ListN Up is a sequence of artist-curated playlists that supply an intimate sonic portrait of up to date artists by showcasing the various and stylistically different music that influences their artistic observe.
A sound can evoke a time, a spot, or a manner of trying on the world. Alex Temple (b. 1983) writes music that distorts and combines iconic sounds to create new meanings, typically in service of surreal, cryptic or fantastical narratives. She has collaborated with performers equivalent to Mellissa Hughes, Julia Holter, Wild Up, Spektral Quartet and the Detroit Symphony Orchestra, and is at the moment an assistant professor at Arizona State College.
Hello, I’m Alex Temple — a composer, performer and educator based mostly in Tempe, AZ. I’m additionally a queer trans girl, and I’m perpetually amazed by the sheer number of nice music that my fellow LGBTQ+ artists are making within the twenty first century. Come be part of me as we take heed to a few of my favorites.
“The Reign of Queer Anarchist Black Steel Begins Now” by Gaylord
Let’s begin off with a bang! The black metallic scene is notorious for harboring far-right extremism, however Canadian multi-instrumentalist Gaylord is pushing again with aggressively anti-fascist music that doesn’t sacrifice the style’s grit and dirt.
“Out Previous Curfew” by Anxious? Anxious!
One other angle on leftist politics: a queer Brooklyn punk band’s autobiographical account of being on the streets through the 2020 rebellion in opposition to police racism. “De Blasio’s not my fucking dad, and if he was, I wouldn’t hear anyway!”
“Sound an Alarm” by Evan Williams, carried out by members of the College of Tennessee at Knoxville Percussion and Saxophone Studios
Sound an Alarm offers with roughly the identical matter as “Out Previous Curfew,” however extra abstractly, with clamorous saxes, clattering percussion, caterwauling sirens, and quotations from the long-lasting Civil Rights anthem “We Shall Overcome.” I heard this piece final yr on a livestream from the College of Tennessee at Knoxville and was blown away.
“Extraordinary Rendition” by The Prince Myshkins
Staying on the political theme, the Prince Myshkins — who I like to think about as a extra radical successor to Tom Lehrer — take a restorative-justice method to the Bush administration’s conflict crimes. (This isn’t to be confused with simply pretending they didn’t occur, à la Ellen.)
“Hollywood Without end” by Heaven Pegasus
Nonbinary synthpop phenomenon Ash Nerve, recording below their former title Heaven Pegasus, tells the story of how Devil and horror films saved them from suicidality and internalized transphobia. The distinction between the darkish lyrics and the tune’s lilting doo-wop sound, together with Nerve’s otherworldly voice, makes me tear up each time.
“Unfold These Hidden Wings” by Xenia St. Charles Iris Llyllyth, carried out by Hattie Bestul
Unfold These Hidden Wings offers with (very) loosely the identical matter as “Hollywood Without end,” however extra abstractly, with frenetic arpeggiators, lush sustained synth chords, and lengthy, semi-improvised delay results. I met Xenia after I visited the College of Michigan in 2020 and we’ve had an awesome ongoing change of concepts (and puns) ever since.
“Digital” by Moe Store & Puniden
Talking of synths, how a couple of journey to the world of futurefunk? With its pastel anime aesthetics, fake clavinets and brain-scrambling excessive side-chaining, “Digital” is a good instance of certainly one of vaporwave’s many, many offshoots within the 2010s — all of them havens for LGBTQ+ musicians.
“Koi” by Le1f
Ethereal trans icon SOPHIE helped outline the pop sound of the 2010s earlier than her premature loss of life in 2021, and you’ll hear her distinctive manufacturing fashion on Le1f’s “candy however lethal” tune about rejecting guys on the bar for not being cool, sizzling, sensible or refined sufficient. His indelible charisma and imperious swagger are completely complemented by her wild, sliding, buzzing chromatic synth traces.
“Cheerleader” by Sir Babygirl
And eventually, on a contrasting word, let’s finish with Sir Babygirl’s joyous tribute to individuals of all genders and physique varieties making out within the locker room!
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