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Alternative & Indie - Released July 19, 2019 | Mr Bongo

Hi-Res Distinctions Qobuzissime
Anatolian lo-fi samba, sung in English, French and Turkish! With such a colourful program, Mantra Moderne is poised to be summer 2019’s most iconic album. This indie-world soundtrack is the lovechild of duo Kit Sebastian. Kit Martin, the one-man-bedroom-band, lives between London and Paris, writing and performing the songs on this first album over which his accomplice Merve Erdem lays her voice. The singer from Istanbul cast her anchor in the British capital. These days it seems unexpected stylistic fusions are all the rage, and Mantra Moderne is the flag bearer for that trend. From Brazilian tropicalism to 60s British pop, and turkish psychedelics to analog electronica, Kit Sebastian like to sift through 20th century music just as Stereolab, Broadcast and Khruangbin did before them. Their cabinet of curiosities includes acoustic and analog instruments, tablas, darbukas, a balalaïka, an oud, a Korg MS-20 and a Farfisa organ. The pair crafts a deliciously minimalistic symphony. It’s mischievous, and oh-so-sixties: The most exotic Qobuzissime of the year! © Marc Zisman/Qobuz
CD$5.99

Pop - Released January 1, 2004 | Mr Bongo

CD$5.99

Pop - Released January 1, 2002 | Mr Bongo

When Terry Callier returned to the music scene as an active participant in 1998, after 20 years in self-imposed exile, he jumped headlong into the recording and touring process. His first two recordings, the fine Timepeace and the less-than-satisfying LifeTime, both had songs worthy of anything Callier ever wrote during the 1960s or 1970s. The live album, Alive on Mr. Bongo from 2001, is a testament to that. But finding a producer who could properly illustrate the vast subtleties in Callier's work, which effortlessly blurs the boundaries between jazz, pop, soul, and poetry, proved difficult in the studio. On Speak Your Peace, Callier has found the perfect working mates in Jean-Paul Maunick and Marc Mac (from 4Hero), two men who understand that his work is more about nuance than statement, sense impression than solid image, poetry than prose. Callier's glorious voice and wonderfully fluid acoustic guitar are front and center in the mixes of both men. Mac accents the skeletal angle of Callier's compositions, as on "Monuments of Mars." He underscores them with gentle rhythms, ambient sounds, well-placed strings, hand drums, and space, allowing the poetic, moral message of Callier's vision to come through unimpeded. Maunick's production techniques, as evidenced on all but three of the album's tracks, ranges; there are the shimmering drum loops on "Running Around," propped by scenic strings and a heavier bassline, that bring Callier's voice to a level above the instrumentation -- and this is fine since he sings with such an authority that it doesn't have to be imposing, so there's no overkill. And then there's the single, "Brother to Brother," which Callier co-wrote with Paul Weller, who joins him in a duet. Everything on the track is spare, full of space and ambience, until the end, where the two voices entwine and a keyboard pulls the rhythm section toward the front. "Caravan of Love" could have been written by Curtis Mayfield and performed by MFSB with backing vocals by Hall & Oates. Yeah, it's that good. As for Callier's compositions, they're stronger than ever. Quoting his words in the context of a review is to belittle their achievement in that they are inextricably wedded to his musical frameworks. (Let's just say that if all pop music were as profound, we would all be activists working for peace and harmony.) The upshot is that this is easily the most seamlessly beautiful and wonderfully consistent recording he's made since his return. There are 14 tracks of ethereal, moving soul, groove, and poignancy that would (or at least should) make Bob Dylan and Smokey Robinson cry. Speak Your Peace rates with Callier's Cadet work in its vision, articulation, and execution. Indeed, on this recording one can hear, in the grain of his voice, a plea for wholeness that could only come from profound heartbreak. © Thom Jurek /TiVo
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Pop - Released January 1, 2001 | Mr Bongo

This 2000 live date from an appearance at the Jazz Café in London is perhaps the definitive Terry Callier live document. Recorded digitally with a septet behind him, Callier takes the audience through the stages of his long and varied career with the great verve and poise that have made him a legend. From "Ordinary Joe" and "Step Into the Light," Callier sets up his audience for "Lazarus Man," which takes what is already an emotionally charged performance into overdrive. With poignant saxophone and flute solos from Gary Plumley, and in the pocket percussion from Bosco DeOliveira, Callier lets his songs and his voice do the talking. This is a performance of such warmth and intimacy that he cannot help but perform to the best of his ability. There is adoration from the crowd and with each bit of that expression of gratitude, Callier digs deeper into himself as well as his catalog after he introduces a new song, "Late Lament for A.D." (for Amadou Dialo, an unarmed man murdered by the New York City police department in 2000). Callier is not one to take a tragedy and make it the centerpiece of his show, though, and he doesn't somehow; even in the somber, moody darkness of the song's body, Callier seeks with his voice for empathy and redemption. And this is what makes him such a singular artist. He looks deeply within himself for every utterance, every emotion, and expresses it as honestly as possible with the thunder of a gospel preacher and the elegance of a dancer. When Callier moves on to "African Violet," his audience is hushed, silenced by the stunning revelations in the depth of his lament. But he lifts them up as he has brought them to self-reflection, as the confession of intimate love becomes an affirmation of life once again, Callier coasts into "You're Gonna Miss Your Candy Man," a good-natured blues from early in his career. He stays in the past by offering the definitive version of "What Colour Is Love" that drips with sweet honey and an earthiness that is sensual and impressionistic. This opaque reading gives way to a brazen expression of desire and sexuality in "Dancing Girl." Here, too, with the band pumping behind him, Callier reaches into the song and derives from it not only his original inspiration, but all of the experiences he has had in singing it in the past. He can see the faces of those women in clubs and theaters he sang the tune to, and their faces shine through his voice. Finally, Callier pulls out Curtis Mayfield's "People Get Ready" for a return of balance to the show, wanting to end on a transcendent note. With the crowd literally screaming in "Dancing Girl"'s aftermath, Callier slows it down and does a jazz read of the Mayfield classic -- and they scream even louder (someone even shouts "Hallelujah" and "Amen") before he slips into his final tune, "I Don't Want to See Myself," which features a beautiful duet vocal by Veronica Cowper. It's a stunner -- deep soul, hard groove, and danceable as hell. What a finish. There are other live records by Terry Callier, and all of them have merit, but Alive is the real deal. © Thom Jurek /TiVo
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Pop - Released May 25, 2009 | Mr Bongo

CD$8.99

Alternative & Indie - Released April 10, 2020 | Mr Bongo

Anatolian lo-fi samba, sung in English, French and Turkish! With such a colourful program, Mantra Moderne is poised to be summer 2019’s most iconic album. This indie-world soundtrack is the lovechild of duo Kit Sebastian. Kit Martin, the one-man-bedroom-band, lives between London and Paris, writing and performing the songs on this first album over which his accomplice Merve Erdem lays her voice. The singer from Istanbul cast her anchor in the British capital. These days it seems unexpected stylistic fusions are all the rage, and Mantra Moderne is the flag bearer for that trend. From Brazilian tropicalism to 60s British pop, and turkish psychedelics to analog electronica, Kit Sebastian like to sift through 20th century music just as Stereolab, Broadcast and Khruangbin did before them. Their cabinet of curiosities includes acoustic and analog instruments, tablas, darbukas, a balalaïka, an oud, a Korg MS-20 and a Farfisa organ. The pair crafts a deliciously minimalistic symphony. It’s mischievous, and oh-so-sixties: The most exotic Qobuzissime of the year! © Marc Zisman/Qobuz
CD$6.99

Pop - Released February 14, 2014 | Mr Bongo

CD$1.69

Pop - Released January 1, 2002 | Mr Bongo

CD$4.99

Pop - Released June 16, 2008 | Mr Bongo

CD$1.69

Alternative & Indie - Released May 31, 2019 | Mr Bongo

CD$5.99

Pop - Released January 1, 2003 | Mr Bongo

Terry Callier has earned a reputation as the king of the chillout singer/songwriters, with his soulful voice and folk-jazz songs. So it's not too surprising, since his renaissance, that a remix album happened. It all starts out perfectly with a version of the Motown classic, "Just My Imagination" from Tom Findlay of Groove Armada, with some sweet backing vocals from Mary Lee. In many ways, this style is the ideal frame for Callier's wonderful voice, giving a bit more muscle to the rhythm, but never overwhelming the central figure. Even the spoken word introductions to three of the tracks don't spoil the pace of the disc; instead, they simply set the mood and atmosphere. Everything is excellent, but some pieces are simply outstanding, like the Zero 7 remix of "Love Theme From Spartacus," and the superbly artful "Sierra Leone." Additionally, there's a video for "You're Gonna Miss Your Candy Man" to round out the package. In some ways, perhaps, it's wrong to credit this to Callier, since it is a remix project. But he is the main, unifying figure, and the voice and original music is his. And it proves that he truly is the modern champion of late night music. © Chris Nickson /TiVo
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Pop - Released April 1, 2013 | Mr Bongo

CD$1.69

Alternative & Indie - To be released November 27, 2020 | Mr Bongo

CD$1.69

Pop - Released March 15, 2019 | Mr Bongo