Tea and Tracks #2

Hello again tea drinkers and music lovers! This is a bit late but the future schedule will be every other Monday. Got some fun stuff today, music to help you chill out or have fun during those days that seem way to long! Remember, this is a way for you to check out some stuff you may have not otherwise heard of, this is music that I really dig and want to share with all your lovely faces. Now let’s jump in!

The first album to check out is skater/musician Tommy Guerrero with his album, No Mans Land. Tommy Guerrero writes music that is perfect to chill out and have vivid imagery, especially in this album where it feels as if you have just stepped onto an old spaghetti western film. The use of his guitar gives off the picture of what the old west has always been portrayed to the public, this album could have very well been a soundtrack to a Sergio Leone film (the creator of the Man With No Name trilogy).  The simple beats behind creative guitar riffs gives the album so much life and allows each individual track its own story and personality. The album has no lyrics and allows you, the listener, to create the setting and imagery of each track as you listen to the smooth nature of the album. The album is a mix of funk, r&b, and indie rock which gives the album such an incredible unique flavor and I highly recommend it to anyone. My favorite track is “Sticks of Fury,” but each track fits together so well so I highly recommend you listen to each track on this wonderful album.


The next album is titled, The Age of Adz, by Sufjan Stevens another unique album and style of creating imagery in the listener’s eyes. Stevens is a story teller at heart, and this is clearly understood through this album, yet the simplistic traits of a story are used. The album focuses on the theme of unmitigated love (and affection), and comes about this whether talking about a sleepover, old age, illness or the apocalypse. The album is a compilation of pop songs strung together with indie electronic sounds and classic folk music, which comes together into one of the most unique albums I have ever listened to. Sufjan Stevens is a musician that many would consider to be “hipster” due to the unique style and vision in his work. My favorite track is, “Too Much,” which encompasses the main style of Sufjan and speaks about the pressure that many face every day in life.


The next album is actually an EP titled, Bullrider, by Mastah Syphe which goes right along with this theme of unique styles in music. This experimental electronic album may turn some off away at first, but much like other forms of art, is absolutely why it should be listened to. This electronic album is not a typical club beat that one may hear, but an artist’s vision of how one can push their medium to the limit. The tracks stick to a 160 BPM style which allows the energy of the track to stay up, while mixing in distinctive switch ups and heavy bass. My favorite track off the EP is, “Helicopter Krunk.” I highly recommend giving it a listen and take a step into the world of experimental electronic music scene.


Now the final album, which I’m am very excited to talk about is, Charge!!, by none other than “The Aquabats!” This band encompasses the term of being unique and uses fun and can change your mood in an instant. The bands roots emerged from the ska scene, but has since changed into a mainly rock genre of style. Now what makes this band unique is each of the band member’s personas that they use when they play, which adds even more too this already incredibly fun band. The current members include, The M.C. Bat Commander on vocals, Crash McLarson on bass guitar and backup vocals, Jimmy the Robot on keyboards and the occasional saxophone, Ricky Fitness on drums, and of course Eagle “Bones” Falconhawk on guitar. Now you may be saying to yourself, are you serious right now, and to that I say yes! The album I chose, Charge!!, is my favorite because of its great music and fun rock nature that it’s all about. The music is exceptional and great to listen to, which is why more people should listen to what they have to offer. I have never been to one of their concerts, but each show they give is an experience in itself, where they play commercials and play games during the show. I hope to one day go to a show just to experience the good times that would be there. They recently had their own show on the Hub Network titled, The Aquabats Super Show, which is reminiscent of early Power Rangers and Batman television show. So to bring it back, check them out and give it a listen, I can guarantee you will enjoy it! My favorite track is, “Hot Summer Nights (Won’t Last Forever)!”


Now! For this editions’ tea of choice, the Samurai Chai Mate Tea from Teavanna. Since I’m on a theme of uniqueness today, this tea brings together the way of the warrior being strength, skill, fairness, mercy, power, energy and balance. The tea embodies this spirit with an invigorating green mate and green rooibos blend. Cinnamon, anise and cardamom blend with papaya, pineapple, orange and lemongrass. So check it out and remember to stay awesome!

-Joshua Thomas

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