Stones Throw alumni Stimulator Jones continues his musical evolution with an exploration in free form jazz and intricate soundscapes on ‘Drama Time’, lifted from the forthcoming album ‘La Mano’ due in January 2021 through Nordic cult label Mutual Intentions.
Drawing on a myriad of influences from Jazz, Soul, Rock, Blues, Hip Hop, R&B and Funk, ‘Drama Time’ delves into the more abstract spectrum of electronic music. Stimulator Jones says: “‘Drama Time’ is a free form jazz fusion exploration with some of my most lyrical drumming. The basis of the track was completely improvised – I later went back and overdubbed more instruments to flesh out the structure and melody. Towards the end of the song a warped tenor saxophone suddenly appears in the mix – the effect was created by running the microphone signal through a Moogerfooger Ring Modulator.”
Stimulator Jones’ sophomore LP finds its way on the Oslo-based record label Mutual Intentions as the artist explores the musical possibilities contained in his hands. La Mano is a striking collage of sonic hues, developed through 13 musical vignettes across the LP. Prodigious and far-reaching influences are re-defined in succinct musical clusters as La Mano travels from Kingston’s bustling yards to serene Parisienne walkways.
A rare talent discovered through the iconic Stones Throw camp, Stimulator Jones broke onto the world with the sensational Exotic Worlds & Masterful Treasures in 2018. Developing a distinctive fusion in his craft, the artist made bold strides on his debut, as rumbling bass-lines and visceral keys, counterpointed Jones’ delicate and tender vocals. The album presented an artist, who could harness the intricacies of the great musical languages of our age in the accessible executions of a pop song.
La Mano finds the artist treading a new, yet familiar path, resting his vocal chords as he puts his hands into action. Playing an arsenal of physical instruments, Stimulator Jones’ dexterity is visceral as he moves between keys, guitars, drums and wind instruments. Arrangements coalesce around organic- and synthetic sounds that live in some tranquil equilibrium with the first vibration of the universe.
Jones explains: “”La Mano” is Spanish for “the hand” – the idea being that all of the sounds you hear on the album were created on real instruments by my hands (and a few other folks’ hands) – there are no samples or programmed drums used on this album at all, as opposed to many of my other beat tapes and productions which draw heavily on those kinds of techniques. I was aiming to create a certain atmosphere that was inspired by all the jazz, funk, blues, boogaloo, Latin, fusion, dub reggae, and psychedelic music that I loved – all filtered through a kind of hip hop sensibility in the form of a hypnotic trance-inducing collection of rhythms and textures. And the concept was to create these sounds on instruments myself with my own hands, not relying on samples of other people’s hands. There was some looping and chopping involved in the construction of the tracks, but the source material was my own recordings of myself and not other people’s records. Everyone’s hands feel a certain way and touch things in a certain, unique way, especially when it comes to how people play musical instruments. “La Mano” is the sound and feeling of my hands.”
Cruising grooves and mellow melodies convey a gauzy touch, breaking down the intellectual barriers of genre for the corporeal intimacy of the soul. La Mano finds the artist diligently pursuing an exploration in a fusion of musical languages, which he channels into novel territory on his debut for the Mutual Intentions collective.