13 & God are en extraordinary hybrid ensemble made up of bits of
German band The Notwist (Marcus and Micha Acher and Martin Gretchman);
American rap duo Themselves (Adam Drucker and Jeff Logan); keyboard
player Dax Pierson and ex-Subtle member Jordan "Antonionian" Dalrymple.
(Numerous other friends and associates add additional strings, brass
and woodwind). Their album 'Own Your Ghost' is nothing less than wonderful.
Their music is happy to straddle genres and hops from stylistic lily
pad to lily pad like the most free and happy frog you ever heard!
Electronica, funk, hippie-hearted folk, rap, psychedelia - it's all
here and more besides but is never any less than wholly coherent.
If you appreciate Hamburg's Lali Puna it is likely that you will find much
to enjoy here too. The beats are crisp and hypnotic; the instrumental
arrangements imaginatively conceived; the vocals always entertaining,
whether flowing in gentle harmonic eddies (as in the lovely opening
track 'It's Own Sun') or racing like a manic hare on a sunny spring
morning (the mercurial rapping on 'Death Major' is a stunning example!)
Other highlights include : the crunchy layered confusion of 'Et Tu',
all swampy voodoo and shuffling fidgety rhythms; the impossible-to-sit-
still-to magical Latin clatter of 'Sure As Debt' and the simply beautiful
melodic invention and steady pulse of the captivating song 'Beat On Us'.
The CD artwork (I love the brown paper insert!) deserves a mention too.