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Big Lo

The Amazing Luxurious Adventures of Baron von Lowenstein Esquire III

Independent

Pensacola’s provocative hip-hop artist is back with an EP that touches on the power of class and societal dilemmas. One of Big Lo’s biggest assets is his ability to dish out poignant material while maintaining his sense of humor. This quality is best showcased in “Cheat Codes”—as shallow as wishing you could transform life as easily as a video game, or as deep as an indictment of bravado culture.

– Nikki Hedrick

Julian Lage

Arclight

Mack Avenue

Guitarist Lage, who several years back recorded the excellent duet album Room with Nels Cline, goes electric on his own big time on Arclight, accompanied by Scott Colley (bass) and Kenny Wollesen (drums). His cover choices—which include stuff by W.C. Handy (“Harlem Blues”), Spike Hughes (“Nocturne”) and Sammy Fain (“I’ll Be Seeing You”)—are not exactly rock anthems, but he’s a genius, so I trust his judgment. Anyone who can conjure Bill Frisell and Django Reinhardt with the flick of a wrist is trustworthy. Lage’s playing is diamond-sharp, powerful but restrained, and effortlessly, drivingly swinging.

– Bruce Collier

Lucky Mud

Lucky 13

luckymudmusic.com

This local husband-wife folk duo seems to always have new music up their sleeves. Their newest full-length album is a mix of folky, southern-inspired whimsical tunes like “Blackberry Jelly” and stories about people who didn’t quite do right (“Amber Alert”). But it’s the two ballads that steal the spotlight with emotional intimacy and authenticity.

– Nikki Hedrick

Sarcophagi

Slaves to the Dream

facebook.com/Sarcophagimetal/

Pensacola deathcore band—essentially a mashup of early death metal influences with distinctive breakdowns and the blast-beat drumming style associated with metalcore rolled up into one. Sarcophagi nicely rides the line between their influences, making it easy to find something to latch onto if you’re a fan of either flavor of extreme metal.

– Nikki Hedrick

Esperanza Spalding

Emily’s D+Evolution

Concord Jazz

If you are into jazz-as-theatre or high concept performance art, the kind that requires doing anything but just sitting back and listening, you might enjoy jazz bassist-vocalist Spalding’s Emily’s D+Evolution. If you like an artist to stay the same record after record, prepare yourself for potential disappointment. Spalding’s previous releases seem rather old school compared with this. It instantly made me think of Joni Mitchell, especially “The Hissing of Summer Lawns.” It’s part eccentric covers, part coffee house poetry, part sound for sound’s sake. It’s best listened to one track at a time. Otherwise things can get overwhelming.

– Bruce Collier

Tangemeenie

the big dismal

tangemeenie.bandcamp.com

Tallahassee based Tangemeenie dishes out modern dream pop with leanings of both British psychedelia and indie pop. Utilizing sweeping soundscapes and electronic samples, it is often a daring undertaking with building layers that peel away to reveal a very human story told in part through the liner notes on the Bandcamp link.

– Nikki Hedrick

 

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