8 DAWN: Second Line

2019 #11, 2013 #24

DAWN (née Richards) is quietly becoming one of the world’s most astonishingly unique, progressive and essential artists. Well, I say ‘quietly’, there is absolutely nothing ‘quiet’ about her sixth studio album. It’s an extravagant, extraverted, shameless parade of confidence. Continuing the dissection and celebration of what New Orleans means to her that began on the (already fucking amazing. Already fucking. It fucks. That album fuuuuuucks. This one might even fuck harder. I have been violently pegged by this album for eight months now) 2019 album ‘New Breed’.

But ‘Second Line’ expands its focus far past the Louisiana city, aiming to use its Afrofuturism to comment on wider instances of black people migrating across state lines and why they ever felt moved to do so. Even when the lyrics or the spoken word montages from DAWN’s mother don’t explicitly make the statement, DAWN’s incredible amalgamation of seemingly every black musical culture of the last 500 years – jazz, obviously, but DAWN also ensures that you’d be able to consider her but never box her in as an artist performing funk, R&B, soul, hip-hop, blues or even grime – is still a pronounced statement on both the artist’s continued existence despite so many barriers, and also to the communities that were able to inspire that. There’s a lot going on here! Which is one of the reasons I love it!!

SO WON’T YOU CLICK LIKE ME?

9 Kid Cudi: Man on the Moon III: The Chosen

2020 #20, 2016 #5 (Kid Cudi) 2018 #8 (Kids Sea Ghosts)

Released in December last year, don’t make me come at you.

Kid Cudi, if you don’t love him your opinion and emotions are wrong and you should be extraordinarily ashamed. He could very well be argued to be one of the absolute most important musical artists of the past twenty years, so maybe that could be a reason you don’t love him. You don’t like ‘modern music’, right? Because you’re a cantankerous old fool? Well, the way it sounds is very much Kid Cudi’s fault, so boohoo him all you want. You do realise that everyone who ever loved you is now dead and you’re likely to follow them off this mortal coil sometime very soon? Cool. Just making sure you were aware how grossly old you are and how you are now impossible to love.

u/Sharp_Vermicelli8470 (who seems to have deleted their account)

I can actually do a pretty good Kid Cudi impression. No, wait, come back! I promise it’s not racist!! Well, not that racist… It might be a little racist, but not that much! I can basically write a fictitious Kid Cudi song, with all the ‘Mmmmmm‘s and all the ‘Woah-uh-woah’s and all the ‘Yes yes yes yes yes’ followed by ‘No!’, or potentially the other way around. It’s fucking uncanny. But I don’t know anyone who would appreciate it. Sigh, I can’t wait to start my TikTok, it’s gonna be freaking lit bruh!!

FALL INTO THE VOID

10 Jazmine Sullivan: Heaux Tales

Top ten! Whoop whoop! Top ten! Whoop whoop! Feeling good?? Feeling stoked?? In that case, let’s bring the mood down a bit with an Andrea Dworkin quote:

Being Female in this world is having been robbed of the potential for human choice by men who love to hate us. One does not make choices in freedom. Instead, one conforms in body type and behaviour and values to become an object of male sexual desire, which requires an abandonment of a wide-ranging capacity for choice

From ‘Intercourse

Or maybe I’ll share a quote from a Joan Didion novel, between Grace and Charlotte, two women sojourning in the fictional central American country of ‘Boca Grande’:

I recall telling Charlotte about a village on the Orinoco where the female children were ritually cut on the inner thigh by their first sexual partners, the point being to scar the female with the men’s totem. Charlotte saw nothing extraordinary in this. “I mean that’s pretty much what happens everywhere , isn’t it?” she said. “Somebody cuts you? Where it doesn’t show?”

A Book of Common Prayers
MEAUX TALES

11 Lorde: Solar Power

2017 #2, 2013 #16

God,I hate writing this blog sometimes. I introduce ideas and introduce you to complex calculations, but unfortunately the vast majority of you pricks don’t read every post sequentially – which is the only way you can properly appreciate the art! – and instead drop in and out of the artists you like. Maybe you just googled ‘Michael McIntyre spanking Hugh Dennis with a cucumber’ and it’s brought you here. Because I just said it. Necessary Evil shames no kinks. You’re all welcome here.

Except you’re not! Because now I have to re-explain concepts I only just introduced a few posts ago! I’m writing Homer’s Iliad here, and you bozos are forcing me to reiterate where Greece is at the start of every paragraph. Only this blog (and its continuing narrative) is fucking better than The Iliad, That piece of trashy macho posturing is only 24 parts, whilst this entry is the five hundred and seventieth part of the ongoing Necessary Evil saga! Suck my contemporary dick, Homer, you ancient Greek prick. Oh, what’s that? You can’t? Oh yeah, because you’re dead. #pwned.

SECRETS OF A BLOG THAT’SSEEN IT ALL

12 Taylor Swift: evermore

2020 #32, 2019 #45, 2018 #59, 2014 #24

Nanananananananana na-na-na, Taylor Swift, Tayor, Taylor Swift! Nanananananananana na-na-na, Taylor Swift, Tayor, Taylor Swift!

Fuck, man, It’s Taylor, you bunch of fucking cunts! Somehow, amongst all the brouhaha, amongst all the controversies and talking points, amongst all the will shes and the won’t she’s and the have shes and the would shes, Taylor fucking Swift has now snuck five consecutive albums onto the Necessary Evil list. For a bit of context, Young Fathers – one of my absolute favourite modern acts – have had three. Radiohead have had two. Her talents are seriously beyond serious debate now, aren’t they?

NO BLOG, NO CRIME

13 Lingua Ignota: SINNER GET READY

“Aren’t you concerned you could infect other people if you get sick inside?”

“No…”

“People who don’t go to this church-”

“No, I’m covered in Jesus’s blood. I’m covered in Jesus’s blood.”

Woman interviewed by CNN entering a church in April 2020, sampled at the beginning of THE SOLITARY BRETHREN OF EPHRATA

On her phenomenally intense and altogether astonishing latest album, Lingua Ignota/Kristen Haytor sticks her claws deeply and violently down the throat of Christian theology, pulling out bloodies entrails that even fellow damned theological researcher Nick Cave feel a little queasy. She highlights the duality and crazed hypocrisy of blind devotion, while also seeming to float the thought of requesting the all-powerful dominance (you could almost call it ‘biblical’) of that good old fashioned Old Testament God to help soother her own wounds by inflicting painful reckoning on the people that have hurt her. Well, I say ‘people’… Men. It’s not a nice story. It’s a grim and horrific story that seems to have been continued recently in her relationship with Daughters‘ frontman Alexis Marshall. I’m not going to cover any of this in detail in this piece, but I feel it is important to be aware of.

The anger and malicious retributory intent reaches such an apex on I WHO BEND THE TALL GRASS, when Hayter sems to collapse to her knees, shivering with rage as she references Corinthians 2:14 and begs God’s help to ‘Take hold of my gentle axe and split him open/Gather up my quiet hammer and nail him down/Use any of your heavenly means/Your golden scythe/Your holy sword/Your fiery arrows studded with stars’ before abandoning any pretence of deference and simply screaming ‘I don’t give a fuck/Just kill him/You have to/I’m not asking’. It’s an absolute fucking trip.

SINNER, GET READY TO READ MORE

14 CHVRCHES: Screen Violence

2018 #58, 2015 #10, 2013 #13

Ow! No, seriously, owowowowow! I can actually barely type right now, both my arms are seriously kejiggerd. Owwwwww! After the (I think we’ll all agree, era-defining) Magdalena Bay post, I went downstairs to get a new cup of tea. My dopy, disabled, Cauda fricking Equina infested body wasn’t paying enough attention to its much compromised balance, I slipped on the stairs and fell down the fucking lot of them!

So, although I planned to write about the wonderful CHVRCHES return to form tonight, I am in no physical shape to perform my usual duties, so I’ll be leaving it until tomorrow. I’m still going to leave this bit in though, because I am meta as fook, you hear?

VIOLENT DELIGHTS

15 Magdalena Bay: Mercurial World

Aaaaargh! Eeeesh! Oooof! Concerned faces! Furrowed brows! Isn’t the internet just awful?! Social media! SOCIAL FUCKING MEDIA! Facebook and Myspace and shit!! They’ve ruined the world! They’ve destroyed a whole generation!! That teenager who you follow on Instagram who keeps posting pictures of her pert young tiddies straining against a tight vest provided by Shein’s new line? Don’t you just hate her?? Her narcissism is destroying society! Havea look at the next photo. Eugh! I’ve never seen such a narcissistic bitch! Scroll down. My God! Look at those tight narcissistic abs and those horrendously self-absorbed nipples visible through that egotistical Pretty Little Things top! Let’s see how bad the next photo is…

The internet’s ruined everything, hasn’t it? Wasn’t Trump elected because of social media, or something? Brexit definitely wouldn’t have happened if it weren’t for Nigel Farage’s TikTok dances. You know how America has roughly eight mass shootings per day, and a couple of school shootings every week? The internet has to be responsible for a decent percent of those, right? Every ritualistic animal murder – the Hip New Trend for Teens 2022™ – has its own enthusiastic Reddit community.

ENDLESS SCROLLING

16 Sharon van Etten: epic Ten

2019 #8, 2014 #3

Don’t think aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaah know?? Y’only tryna sa-ha-haave, yourself! Fuck, yes! I motherfucking love this shit! And I’m not only referring to the original songs on Sharon van Etten’s original 2010 album, her second release and one that indisputably catapulted her into that vaunted selection of artists you should perhaps, maybe, kinda care about. A lot.

While we’re here, can more artists do this please? I have a deeply psychological issue where I will only listen to records released in the same calendar year as when I’m encountering them, with the odd annual exception if you’ve died or if you’re, erm, Yeasayer. Or Prince. If you’re an artist that I’ve discovered in the past five years or so -when this strange affliction really started to take hold and become near dictatorial – then I’m just never going to have the chance to go back and appreciate your earlier stuff unless you rerelease it. Ideally encased with as many bells and whistles as possible, making it an official reissue and eligible for that year’s list. Like, Lupe Fiasco, I’ve fallen in love with you, but only since 2014, so can you rerelease your older stuff that people say is, actually, much better? Kid Cudi, you too, I only started appreciating your majesty as recently as 2016. Could you rerelease that terrible rock album you did, I am beyond curious. But not, like, curious enough to disobey the list.

TO READ THE REST WOULD BE A CRIME