Friday Five highlights music by Washtenaw County-associated artists and labels.
This week features hip-hop from Hi Potent C & Omnichron, video-game-inspired music from Test Device and Quality Jones, funk and fusion by Morel Compass, and dance-floor bangers from Price.
Hi Potent C & Omnichron, OmniPotentC
This mini-album has been floating around for a few months, mostly on Ypsi rapper Hi Potent C's website, but it finally hit the streaming services this month. Potent's laconic flow is complemented perfectly by Omnichron's jazzy, atmospheric production—until the last track where both artists must have slammed a bunch of coffee because the duo goes OFF with speed and power. OmniPotentC is an excellent collab and I look forward to their future throwdowns.
Test Device, "Positionlight"
I don't know Ann Arbor's Test Device, but they've been making music for almost a decade going by Bandcamp release dates: the only other recording on the site, Lost Data, is from 2013. "Positionlight" is a chiptune-inspired industrial synth jam.
Quality Jones, Ambassador EP
Ann Arbor's Quality Jones is another chiptune / video-game-inspired composer, and if the universe ever approaches normalcy again, I'm booking a massive concert featuring local artists working in this milieu. It might be an all-weekend festival, too, such is the quantity and quality of musicians exploring these genres in Washtenaw County.
Morel Compass, Demonstration of Insecurities and Abilities
Based on the cover art, I assumed Ann Arbor's Morel Compass might be a metal or punk group. But Jake Kitley's one-man band explores funk, folk, and jam-band styles, and the tunes seem to be built primarily from the bass on up.
Price, Keweenaw Industrial Vol. 1
The none/such label got its start when its creators were University of Michigan students, many of whom have since dispersed to various parts of the globe. But Michigan—the state and the university—still plays a big part of the label's identity. I don't know anything about Price, but I assume they're from the Upper Pennisula because Keweenaw Industrial Vol. 1 is built on field recordings made in the remote Michigan county. But these aren't ambient explorations but rather techno-influenced bangers, including a dancefloor-ready remix by Detroit artist Rebecca Goldberg.
Christopher Porter is a library technician and the editor of Pulp.
Hi everyone! My name is Dan, and I am the artist behind Quality Jones, listed above. I am honored to be featured here next to some seriously great talent.
After discovering a potential name conflict with a business elsewhere in the US, I have decided to be proactive and change my artist name to "Uranium Jones." My bandcamp page is similarly changed, https://uraniumjones.bandcamp.com/ - Thanks to everyone who has checked me out so far.