Khruangbin: The Universe Smiles Upon You (NightTimeStories/Southbound)

 |   |  <1 min read

Khruangbin: Two Fish and an Elephant
Khruangbin: The Universe Smiles Upon You (NightTimeStories/Southbound)

As summer arrives our attention turns to slower sounds, but if the thought of more barbecue reggae makes you queasy then this (mostly) instrumental trio originally out of Texas can oblige with something special and pleasingly unexpected.

Owing a little to the slow end of surf instrumentals (think the theme to The Endless Summer), a bit to the romantic side of the Shadows and psychedelic soul grooves, they also weave in some supple trip-hop and a bit of subtle South East Asia funk.

Quite an amalgam of reference points but the dreamy, distant sound of the lightly fuzzed guitar, head-nod rhythms, gentle exoticism and the occasional vocal passage to add another dimension make for something which commands repeat-play.

There aren't too many instrumental bands out there which – as they do here on Dern Kala -- can start somewhere on a Thai beach at dusk, have you subliminally humming a Marvin Gaye tune and then take you home via Hawaii.

Their name suggests something like “flying engine” or “aeroplane” in Thai apparently.

But whatever it is, the take-off is smooth and there's no turbulence in these 40 minutes of flying first class.

Share It

Your Comments

post a comment

More from this section   World Music articles index

Various Artists: Next Stop Soweto Vol 3; Giants, Ministers and Makers (Strut)

Various Artists: Next Stop Soweto Vol 3; Giants, Ministers and Makers (Strut)

Subtitled "Jazz in South Africa 1963-1984" this is the third volume in the excellent Strut excavation of crucial SA music which has previously picked up Township jive music and mad... > Read more

The Yamato Ensemble: Japanese Music by Michio Miyagi, Vol 1 (ARC/Elite)

The Yamato Ensemble: Japanese Music by Michio Miyagi, Vol 1 (ARC/Elite)

Although he lived in the first half of the 20th century, the famous Japanese composer Michio Miyagi -- whose works are featured here -- actually belonged to a much older world. He wrote in the... > Read more

Elsewhere at Elsewhere

TURIN BRAKES INTERVIEWED (2004): Something in the ether

TURIN BRAKES INTERVIEWED (2004): Something in the ether

So you're travelling to the States soon and wondering about that new fingerprinting and high-security thing at the airport on arrival? Tell it to Gale Paridjanian of Turin Brakes. He's been down... > Read more

South west China: Give me land, lots of land

South west China: Give me land, lots of land

In Guizhou province they move mountains. Literally. Here in this vast region of south west China – two thirds the area of New Zealand and with a population around 40 million –... > Read more