Friday, December 23, 2022

Albums of the Year # 3 Naima Bock - Wild Palm



I had a slightly frustrating time on occasion watching Glastonbury on TV this year. Not all the time, for the most part it was wonderful, but occasionally I had a slightly frustrating spell watching and trying to appreciate the attraction of the highly feted crop of young or youngish British Post Punk bands once again.

I've pretty much given up on Black Midi and Squid now. Dry Cleaning went slightly, ever so slightly up in my estimation. IDLES played a great set. In general though I think I need to give up my struggle against this puzzling modern sub genre of independent music, for fear of boring people.

If asked to choose my favourite band among those, inevitably lazily coralled under the Post Punk label, they would certainly be Goat Girl, a group that I'm always slightly surprised to find rather neglected when this area of music is discussed.

I saw Goat Girl play a few years ago, in their early days, supporting someone, (can't remember who). If I'd known how interested I'd become in them I'd have paid more attention. Naima Bock, played bass in that original incarnation of the band. She's since left, had a pretty tough time personally apparently and come up with this, her debut Wild Palm.

It's a really magical album, quite unlike anything else you'll here this year. It certainly doesn't sound anything like Goat Girl. A hugely ambitious record that touches on Jazz, (Miles and Coltrane come to mind), Bossa Nova, the Avant Gard and mostly Folk. Often it pitches itself somewhere between Sandy Denny, Os Mutante and one of those great personal idiusyncratice personal statements of the late Sixties and early Seventies, Forever Changes, Astral Weeks, Five Leaves Left, Just Another Diamond Day. But really these are just reference points. It's really just an incredibly original album that demands to be be heard..

For the course of its ten track run Wild Palm meanders wherever chooses and makes you want to listen to it again once you're done to try to work out exactly where it might becoming from, because you can't quite believe what you've heard and what you're hearing.

It's magic, pure and simple. Lush, bucolic and pastoral all at once. An incredible act of renewal and recover/ The record has already gathered a small buzz and I can see that gathering in coming months. It's out on Sub Pop. Do yourself a favour.

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