Baker's Dozen: Leon Vynehall, Tee Grizzley, and Hauntological Mourning

Baker's Dozen: Leon Vynehall, Tee Grizzley, and Hauntological Mourning

Baker's Dozen is usually a weekly thing for paid subscribers of Larry Fitzmaurice's Last Donut of the Night newsletter—but today it's free for all to read, for those who want a taste of what you get when you sign up for a paid subscription.

And, hey, speaking of paid subscriptions! I'm still running an annual subscription sale, $17.40 for 12 months instead of the usual $30. You can get the deal right here, but hurry—I'm gonna pull it on Saturday.

Parannoul, "Sound Inside Me, Waves Inside You"

After spending a little more time with After the Magic, I've decided that it doesn't really bowl me over the way that 2021's instant classic To See the Next Part of the Dream did—but it's still beautiful, obviously Parannoul fucking rules. The massive bass line that crashes through the second half of this song is everything to me, it almost feels like it's reverberating through the atmosphere around you.

Portable, "Foreign to You" [ft. NiQ E]

Alan Abrahams' latest long-player as Portable is brainy and body-moving, anyone who's ever found themselves spinning Herbert's Bodily Functions on repeat would take to his work pretty easily...obviously he's a veteran at this point, someone whose catalogue I need to spend more time with in general.

Blackdown, "This Journey VIP"

Unsurprisingly it's all about that skittering bass line that comes in around 1:30 for me here...god, the Shock Power of Love EP is so good, I'm probably just gonna go ahead and feature the whole damn thing through the next few Baker's Dozen installments. Stop me from talking about "Dark Gethsemane" before I get there, I fucking dare you...

Chime School, "Calling in Sick"

Andy Pastalaniec's debut as Chime School is peak Slumberland and peak San Francisco; the thing is stuffed with effortless-sounding jangles that feel ripped from the fabric of the past, and there's just a touch of the punk-ish slackness that some associate with the SF garage sound that's weaved in and out of view over the last few decades. Some people wonder where this style of indie went after having a greater level of visibility in the early 2010s, but it never really left, and I'd like to think there's still a solid audience for it, too.

Leon Vynehall, "An Exhale"

Love Leon Vynehall but felt like Rare, Forever was a bit of a miss, in general he still smashes it when he's in euphoric house mode but when he hits the "this is an album from an electronic artist, if you know what I mean" side of things I can't quite connect with what he's doing as much. But this is a very cool track, you get a little bit of the pointilist trance stuff that people like Gabor Lazar and Lorenzo Senni have been doing, but streaked with these wild sonic flourishes that almost sound like airplanes passing over the whole thing. Cool.

El Michels Affair, "Fazed Out"

El Michels Affair have obviously been doing their instrumental rap thing for years, they've worked with past and present rap legends, and they also very unsurprisingly dropped a collab LP with Black Thought recently. I thought Yeti Season was a cool record, I feel like they're so good at conjuring a visual vibe with their sounds that the sync opportunities have to be abundant.

Tee Grizzley, "White Lows Off Designer" [ft. Lil Durk]

Tee Grizzley, I like him, don't find myself thinking about him all that often, he's good enough though. Another solid Durk feature here though, in general good hook, I like this song. Yeah, this might be a shoulders-shrug emoji of a critical position, but, like, at least I didn't literally post the shoulders-shrug emoji.

Ho99o9, "SLO BREAD" [ft. BUN B]

Real witch house shit right here...after a decade of me being faintly aware of them, I still don't really know what to make of Ho99o9 other than that there's always music like this floating around with some level of visibility, I've seen these guys on a metal festival lineup or two this year so clearly they're still going with some level of strength. BUN B is a good vibe on this.

Fort Romeau, "Be With U"

Nine minutes of bliss from Fort Romeau, who is simply so goddamn good at this type of gorgeous house sound...It's cool to see Michael Greene continue to pump out the jams like this, I've been following his work for a decade now since his earliest releases while I was running the Tracks section over at Pitchfork and he continues to absolutely nail this emotive, rippling sound better than most others do.

Rosie Carney, "i wanna feel happy"

Nice song, you can definitely tell by the title of the song what you're getting into here before you hear a single note of music...obviously, so much indie music sounds "like this" now, to the point where it's basically defined the sound of indie for several years now and with no sign of letting up. Where your mileage varies is entirely up to you, I still think that when it's done well, it's done well, and Rosie Carney does it well.

Sophia Kennedy, "Seventeen"

Sophia Kennedy's 2021 album Monsters is heavily underrated (Pitchfork didn't review it at all, despite giving a positive review to her debut in 2017), even though she's on City Slang she still has that weird and warm Pampa sound running through her veins. Anyone who's ever gone saucer-eyed while listening to DJ Koze will continue to find what they're looking for from her.

For Those I Love, "To Have You"

Speaking of records Pitchfork didn't review...Jesus Christ, this album, this project, so fucking heavy and intense and in-your-face. For Those I Love comes from a story that's marked by loss and grief, and the sound is so incredibly UK-specific and within a specific niché—a guy basically doing recollective spoken-word over decayed rave samples, recounting Mount Kimbie videos and nights out with mates in a way that makes you feel like he's staring you straight in the eyes, basically what you would get if Mike Skinner went full hauntology—it's a lot! And I have to imagine the appeal is specific and potentially off-putting to a wide swath of listeners, I mean, look, this is the type of shit I'm usually into and it took me a few spins to get on this guy's wavelength. But I feel like what he did here is quite special, maybe even era-defining in its own personal and hyper-specific way. How do you make a follow-up to something like this? Maybe you don't, and maybe that would make a lot of sense—some statements only need to be made once.

L'Orange and Namir Blade, "Nihilism"

Very much enjoy Namir Blade's collab with L'Orange Imaginary Everything, good indie-rap with vibrant production, not sure I have deeper thoughts than that. Sometimes it just ain't that deep either!

Subscribe to Last Donut of the Night

Sign up now to get access to the library of members-only issues.
Jamie Larson