Sault - What's the story?

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Album is here -

Just from the first track I can detect traces of ESG, The Jellies, The Dixie Cups & Holland–Dozier–Holland era Motown if it had been produced by Norman Whitfield. The production is timeless but state of the art at the same time. Ace songwriting.

My inner cynic reckons with the smart low key underground anti-marketing it is going to end up that Sault are some long time music business insiders, the album will eventually get a full release on say XL with a massive marketing push and it'll end up being thee essential album of 2020. Or not. But whatever, it doesn't detract from it being a great record.

stirmonster, Monday, 16 September 2019 20:42 (two years ago) link

I hate that the vinyl sold out like in a day and I was constantly checking if a release date was published. The whole willful obscurity of the project is frustrating but I guess it’s working. I heard Danger Mouse was involved but that might be fake.

Music wise I posted in the songs of summer 2019 thread that I absolutely love the combination of northern soul vocals + krautrock styled drums.

✖✖✖ (Moka), Monday, 16 September 2019 20:58 (two years ago) link

i think vinyl is still available from here -

stirmonster, Monday, 16 September 2019 21:00 (two years ago) link

It's groovy, but I'm not really hearing the ace songwriting.

#YABASIC (morrisp), Monday, 16 September 2019 21:02 (two years ago) link

i guess it comes down to what kind of song writing you dig?

stirmonster, Monday, 16 September 2019 21:04 (two years ago) link

Xpost: Huh that’s weird last time I checked they were sold out! I guess they restocked, thank you for the heads up, already ordered.

✖✖✖ (Moka), Monday, 16 September 2019 21:07 (two years ago) link

People on discogs were selling them for twice or thrice the price which I thought was ridiculous as a second print was surely around the corner.

I see two sellers still have it for 50 pounds.

✖✖✖ (Moka), Monday, 16 September 2019 21:11 (two years ago) link

Oh I see there’s snippets of a new album called 7 on their instagram account and it also sounds great. Seriously who are behind this project? I can’t find anything on them only name I see attached is Dean Inflo Josiah which is also very obscure on info and... maybe an alias of another artist?

✖✖✖ (Moka), Monday, 16 September 2019 22:36 (two years ago) link

i thought i read somewhere that 00s blog fav kid sister was involved?

just sayin, Monday, 16 September 2019 22:40 (two years ago) link

There is another name attached too - Cleopatra Nikolic.

She has written for Little Simz.

I'm not on Instagram so didn't know about '7'. Curioser and curioser.

stirmonster, Monday, 16 September 2019 22:41 (two years ago) link

Some of these new tracks sound very “Danger Mouse” I wouldn’t be surprised if he is in fact attached to this one. I see there’s a connection between this “Dean Inflo” mystery man and Danger Mouse on a Michael Kiwanuka album.

✖✖✖ (Moka), Monday, 16 September 2019 22:51 (two years ago) link

I kinda like how this band is a mystery. Really cool album!

(•̪●) (carne asada), Tuesday, 17 September 2019 00:38 (two years ago) link

This sounds great, thanks for the heads up.
allmusic has the following bio information: "A rhythm-forward heavy rock ensemble formed by members of American power metallers Kamelot and groove metal outfit Arcanium." LOL, that seems highy unlikely

willem, Tuesday, 17 September 2019 08:39 (two years ago) link

It’s actually true! There’s another band called Sault who play metal. one of them might need to change their name eventually.

✖✖✖ (Moka), Tuesday, 17 September 2019 15:02 (two years ago) link

Never heard of them before this thread. Listened to a couple tracks so far - I like it but the ESG influence is PROMINENT. Also hearing Tom Tom Club as filtered though, I don’t know, something from the era of late 90s electronica’s-the-next-big-thing.

sctttnnnt (pgwp), Tuesday, 17 September 2019 16:40 (two years ago) link

The song is the second single from Sault, a trio that features London-based musician Dean “Inflo” Josiah Cover (writer of audio mainstays “Black Man in a White World” by Michael Kiwanuka, “House in LA” by Jungle, “Offence” by Little Simz, and many, many more). It’s released via Forever Living Originals, an independent label that counts Melisa Young among its cohort, better known as Chicago rapper Kid Sister (whose Kanye-featuring “Pro Nails” was a bonafide smash upon its release in 2011, as was the track’s magnificently massive Rusko remix).

sctttnnnt (pgwp), Tuesday, 17 September 2019 16:47 (two years ago) link

Oh nevermind I see you already figured this much out.

sctttnnnt (pgwp), Tuesday, 17 September 2019 16:48 (two years ago) link

I listened to and enjoyed the album but also thought that almost every song seemed geared for placement on a modern Southern Gothic HBO-type show. (N.B.: I am watching Sharp Objects at the moment which may have influenced this conclusion).

monotony, Wednesday, 18 September 2019 02:18 (two years ago) link

new album already?

just sayin, Monday, 30 September 2019 05:24 (two years ago) link

that should probably be 'new album already!'

just sayin, Monday, 30 September 2019 05:26 (two years ago) link

7? Have I missed 6?

mmmm, Monday, 30 September 2019 10:08 (two years ago) link

Haha I half wonder if they're just releasing individual discs from a huge boxset-sized debut album

7 is the one, I think (so far)--5 is pretty great debut for a 'sound' band--foregrounding those influences that seemingly nobody will ever tire of--but some of those songs on 7 really hit me deep in the soul

the cretin hits the cast (Drugs A. Money), Wednesday, 2 October 2019 04:15 (two years ago) link

two weeks pass...

Both albums are amazingly consistent, hard to really choose one over the other. Huge low-end throughout. I feel wrong saying it, but this is what I wish ESG sounded like.

Mario Meatwagon (Moodles), Monday, 21 October 2019 23:12 (two years ago) link

My copy of the 2nd one should arrive tomorrow. I'm perfectly happy with how ESG sound already and wouldn't change anything about their sound, but if their more recent recordings had sounded more like this I'd probably play them more.

stirmonster, Monday, 21 October 2019 23:44 (two years ago) link

"why, why why" is an earworm and a half even on a first listen.

What a ridiculous clusterfuck of totally uncool jokers (jed_), Tuesday, 22 October 2019 00:02 (two years ago) link

one month passes...

Damn totally missed the second release!

(•̪●) (carne asada), Friday, 22 November 2019 19:28 (two years ago) link

It's really good too, although I feel ever slightly more favorably toward 5.

Mario Meatwagon (Moodles), Friday, 22 November 2019 19:37 (two years ago) link

They're both pretty fucking amazing. Love the trend of bands popping out 2 albums this year

octobeard, Saturday, 23 November 2019 02:03 (two years ago) link

Really enjoy the slight layer of polish distinguishing the second album from the first. Even more, I enjoy trying to figure out if it’s the songs as a whole or the brilliance of the rhythm section that’s the force of what’s captivating me.

file of unknown origin (bendy), Saturday, 23 November 2019 04:45 (two years ago) link

For me it’s the brilliance of the rhythm section. They are amazing. Apparently there’s a tour planned next year so I guess we’ll finally meet the people behind it.

✖✖✖ (Moka), Saturday, 23 November 2019 07:15 (two years ago) link

yes, all about the rhythm section for me. is anybody else's copy of the second album warped?

stirmonster, Saturday, 23 November 2019 16:54 (two years ago) link

Gradually, I'm growing to feel like this is ace songwriting, both wishing I could articulate why and knowing that I like it because I can't pin it down. It's Sly & Robbie, but it's also Sly and Robbie and Black Uhuru.

file of unknown origin (bendy), Sunday, 24 November 2019 13:52 (two years ago) link

The grooves carry them on tracks that are less fleshed out, but there's definitely some standout songwriting too. "Why Why Why Why Why", "Masterpiece", and "Friends" leap to mind as A+ writing.

Mario Meatwagon (Moodles), Sunday, 24 November 2019 14:03 (two years ago) link

Yes, the grooves are what drew me in to begin with but the songwriting is what elevates it into something very special. it will be very interesting to see how it works live.

stirmonster, Sunday, 24 November 2019 15:58 (two years ago) link

two weeks pass...

I missed the previous discussion on this but gave it a listen after seeing it listed as Bandcamp’s second best album of the year. Rhythm section really shines.

I am using your worlds, Saturday, 14 December 2019 10:31 (two years ago) link

Jesus Christ these records are so utterly, completely everything I want/need in new music. Even things I love wholeheartedly, it's incredibly rare to hear something where just every decision feels so exactly right.

This has to be related to Little Simz, no?

The only connection I really hear to ESG (whom I adore) is that it's so perfectly minimalist--there's never more than like three or four sound sources. I hear some Library tendencies, some high sophistication a la Adrian Younge/Midnight Hour or Michael Kiwanaku but with so much more restraint. If there's an Afrobeat component it feels more like Lijadu Sisters than Fela... I mean, they definitely get the "who does this call back to" synapses firing, but ultimately I really don't care too much because it's just so perfectly timeless--never retro or overtly futurist, just. . . what it needs to be to do what it's trying to do.

Soundslike, Monday, 23 December 2019 05:32 (two years ago) link

If this is Danger Mouse related, it's by far the best thing he's ever been involved with. The restraint would seem uncharacteristic. . .

Soundslike, Monday, 23 December 2019 05:40 (two years ago) link

If you're not hearing this group, you're missing something pretty damned wonderful:

Soundslike, Wednesday, 1 January 2020 06:08 (two years ago) link

^ you piqued my interest with those previous posts, so thanks! 7 is especially good, I quickly decided.

Nag! Nag! Nag!, Wednesday, 1 January 2020 13:04 (two years ago) link

i wish the "dancing in the rover" (?) voice from "up all night" would reappear elsewhere. that little refrain is my favorite part of 5 !

budo jeru, Saturday, 4 January 2020 19:31 (two years ago) link

we're all voting for "up all night" as the song to represent sault at the 77 best tracks ILM 2019. i said it first that means you have to do it

budo jeru, Saturday, 4 January 2020 19:34 (two years ago) link

Kind of wish "Don't Waste My Time" was nominated, but don't want to further dilute the choices.

Mario Meatwagon (Moodles), Saturday, 4 January 2020 20:06 (two years ago) link

i love don’t waste my time! still haven’t heard the new album.

Fizzles, Saturday, 4 January 2020 20:11 (two years ago) link

I'll go with that just to get them seen/heard--but I don't think I could pick fewer than 10 favorites across the two albums.

I'm pretty firmly sold on '7' as the better of the two albums, though both are top-5 of the year for me...

Soundslike, Saturday, 4 January 2020 20:19 (two years ago) link

7 has grown on me but 5 is thee one i reckon. hard to choose between "don't waste my time" and "up all night".

stirmonster, Saturday, 4 January 2020 21:11 (two years ago) link

I need to try 7 again, definitely dismissed it too quickly.

Good taste, bit Victorian but who isn't? (jed_), Saturday, 4 January 2020 21:28 (two years ago) link

I can't figure getting one and not the other? They're hardly miles apart--tracks could be interchanged freely, other than '7' having a slightly more serious tone overall perhaps?

Soundslike, Saturday, 4 January 2020 21:45 (two years ago) link

you're probably right tbh.

Good taste, bit Victorian but who isn't? (jed_), Saturday, 4 January 2020 22:02 (two years ago) link

okay, there are songs on 5 that it sounds like had existed for many years but which I had only just heard (where has this been all my life?) whereas this one sounds more current and more like a straight RnB record at times (albeit a very good one). I was singing along with Up All Night, Why Why Why... and others after one listen (this is not always a good thing but is in this instance) but I struggle, so far, to have that connection on 7. 5 also sounds like a weird compilation of unheard tracks from various groups whereas 7 sounds like a record by a group (MAYBE) and that is not a negative, it just doesn't seem uncanny in the way 7 does.

Good taste, bit Victorian but who isn't? (jed_), Saturday, 4 January 2020 23:00 (two years ago) link

I also want to add how much I love Sault as a band/project name.

Good taste, bit Victorian but who isn't? (jed_), Saturday, 4 January 2020 23:08 (two years ago) link

Glad if anyone digs this, and props to them for following their muse, but I feel like I went to the ice cream store and Sault was like, “Sorry, no ice cream today, all we’re serving up is pretzels,” and I was like, “You do you, but Phil Glass’s place down the street does better pretzels. I’ll pass.”

war mice (hardcore dilettante), Saturday, 16 April 2022 05:04 (one month ago) link

hope you can get your money back

beepy fridges (sic), Saturday, 16 April 2022 05:13 (one month ago) link

Sounds like someone bought some new plugins for Logic.

29 facepalms, Saturday, 16 April 2022 08:18 (one month ago) link

this is fine for what it is but not something i'll want to come back to

ufo, Saturday, 16 April 2022 08:52 (one month ago) link

I wouldn't be surprised if this was all VST's. I don't think this is an attempt to confound expectations as much as showcasing what they can else they can do, maybe with an eye on a movie soundtrack/t.v. music gig. It can be a very lucrative platform to get into, especially when you are a prodigious studio producer and a creative, technical vocalist that seem to be reticent about performing live shows. I might be wrong but aren't Cleo and Inflo now husband and wife or partners with kids? moving in this direction makes sense to me, given their talents and options.

Swanswans, Saturday, 16 April 2022 13:10 (one month ago) link

given that this is basically a homage to David Axelrod, i think i will be listening to this a lot more than anything else for a while.

mark e, Saturday, 16 April 2022 16:43 (one month ago) link

Glad you like it so much. What about it reminds you of David Axelrod?

(I'm a huge Axelrod fan and know his records extremely well. Nothing on Air recalls Axelrod. I'm curious what you're hearing.)

Let's disco dance, Hammurabi! (Austin), Saturday, 16 April 2022 18:14 (one month ago) link

it's not a direct groove,
but the use of excess orchestral and choral vibes,
definitely makes me think this is the kind of thing that the axe would make had he had the chance again.

mark e, Saturday, 16 April 2022 18:27 (one month ago) link

I feel like an Axelrod or Jankovic sound (i.e. with drums, bass and guitar surrounded by orchestration) would've been more ehat I would've expected in a wide-screen Sault record. Might've sounded something like an Adrian Younge/Midnight Hour sound. But the beat-less/bass-lessness seems intentional...

Soundslike, Saturday, 16 April 2022 20:40 (one month ago) link

Oh, absolutely. Axe's 90s recordings are mostly without drums, but very dissonant. Can definitely hear how some of the weirder high register harmonics on Air are somewhat reminiscent of Earth Rot. If pressed, I'd say Air reminds me of Charles Stepney meets Alice Coltrane, but if you just broke both of those core sounds down to their barest of bare essentials.

Let's disco dance, Hammurabi! (Austin), Saturday, 16 April 2022 21:02 (one month ago) link

Yeah this is not my cup of tea but I still love they aren’t afraid of pushing themselves in a different direction.

I’m going to imagine this is like Pink Floyd’s “more” and the best is yet to come.

✖✖✖ (Moka), Sunday, 17 April 2022 03:22 (one month ago) link

I simultaneously am impressed that they are always willing to try new stuff while secretly wishing they had continued on the vibe of 5 and 7, which were just two perfect little albums.

Tsar Bombadil (James Morrison), Sunday, 17 April 2022 09:04 (one month ago) link

really like "heart," but i feel like the vast majority of the stuff on the album has been done better elsewhere

in places all over the world, real stuff be happening (voodoo chili), Monday, 18 April 2022 16:55 (one month ago) link

Yeah, I'm always going to check out anything they release, but this is the first time I'm not going to fork out for a physical version. I totally respect the experimentation and will anxiously await the next project, but this is just not my cup of tea.

a superficial sheeb of intelligence (jon /via/ chi 2.0), Monday, 18 April 2022 16:59 (one month ago) link

this certainly can be my cup of tea at times lol, i will definitely return to "heart" often and "solar" less occasionally.

in places all over the world, real stuff be happening (voodoo chili), Monday, 18 April 2022 17:09 (one month ago) link

i don't think i'll get the physical release of this either. i do appreciate it but don't imagine i'll return to it too often.

this Bandcamp review made me chuckle.

.... I love all your previous albums. LOVE THEM. But man....I am just dumbfounded. I wanted some smooth soul and something to dance to to make me forget the stresses of this world...and I didn't get that from this.

stirmonster, Monday, 18 April 2022 19:43 (one month ago) link

Now watch the next album is the one where they go physical only and the one preview song available online just absolutely kills.

Let's disco dance, Hammurabi! (Austin), Monday, 18 April 2022 19:57 (one month ago) link

That silly Bandcamp review makes me think, maybe a small motivation for this record could be sensing they were starting to be critically/popularly pinned down, and they don't strike me as having been interested in being defined and hence constrained. I always expect the unexpected from them.

Soundslike, Tuesday, 19 April 2022 02:14 (one month ago) link

i think it's just inflo doing whatever he wants really

ufo, Tuesday, 19 April 2022 02:46 (one month ago) link

Guardian review seems to imply only Inflo is involved with this one

groovypanda, Tuesday, 19 April 2022 13:45 (one month ago) link

cleo is definitely on at least “time is precious”

in places all over the world, real stuff be happening (voodoo chili), Tuesday, 19 April 2022 13:47 (one month ago) link

i think she's on the title track, too?

in places all over the world, real stuff be happening (voodoo chili), Tuesday, 19 April 2022 14:29 (one month ago) link

looking on Tidal, she has co-credits on both those songs

I should probably bump the hyped releases diss thread now that there's a 5-star review to complain about rather than my fellow ilxors' opinions, but I would really love for that Guardian reviewer to draw me a diagram explaining how this album sounds anything like World Galaxy

rob, Tuesday, 19 April 2022 15:31 (one month ago) link

World Galaxy comparison is a BIG reach, as is A Rainbow In Curved Air

a few of the comments compare it to Atom Heart Mother which i didn't really get from it either.

stirmonster, Tuesday, 19 April 2022 15:49 (one month ago) link

it sounds like a hans zimmer 2004 score or a massage cd

kurt schwitterz, Tuesday, 19 April 2022 17:21 (one month ago) link

xp i'm glad that alice coltrane is more popular than ever before but the annoying flipside is how lazy writers use her as an automatic touchstone reference anytime they hear a harp

nobody like my rap (One Eye Open), Tuesday, 19 April 2022 17:33 (one month ago) link

i mean: big string charts with sparse harp passages and quasi-religious chanting. it doesn't sound exactly like any alice coltrane records. but it doesn't sound exactly like any charles stepney records either.

still very reminiscent of both.

(and that's okay. i like all parties involved.)

Let's disco dance, Hammurabi! (Austin), Tuesday, 19 April 2022 17:57 (one month ago) link

Gonna be fun watching music reviewers who don’t know anything about modern classical music or black music tripping over their dicks with this one

Whiney G. Weingarten, Tuesday, 19 April 2022 21:29 (one month ago) link

ftr i like this a lot and its cool that sault does whatever tf they want and its free so why complain!? sheesh

kurt schwitterz, Tuesday, 19 April 2022 21:32 (one month ago) link

Yeah, this is cool

Whiney G. Weingarten, Tuesday, 19 April 2022 21:35 (one month ago) link


Whiney G. Weingarten, Tuesday, 19 April 2022 21:36 (one month ago) link

I don't see many complaints here tbh, just people acknowledging this isn't their thing, which I don't think is bad.

a superficial sheeb of intelligence (jon /via/ chi 2.0), Tuesday, 19 April 2022 21:36 (one month ago) link

i predict next one will be more esg meets d'angelo and then like a transcendent black metal album. plz venmo chakifunk $10 if im right about this.

kurt schwitterz, Tuesday, 19 April 2022 22:05 (one month ago) link

Good counterpoint to the new Johann Johannsson

Whiney G. Weingarten, Wednesday, 20 April 2022 17:47 (one month ago) link

listened again and it's growing on me. also inspired me to go back and listen to some old rotary connection and axelrod, so we're all winners here

in places all over the world, real stuff be happening (voodoo chili), Wednesday, 20 April 2022 17:57 (one month ago) link


Let's disco dance, Hammurabi! (Austin), Wednesday, 20 April 2022 18:17 (one month ago) link

yeah same - I tried again and I guess I went in with a different mindset, not bad

TWELVE Michelob stars?!? (seandalai), Wednesday, 20 April 2022 21:30 (one month ago) link

Not into this at all. Fitting that Pitchfork finally gave them a BNM for this.

Indexed, Thursday, 21 April 2022 20:41 (one month ago) link

i like choral music and contemporary classical and i don't really like this very much

oh well, different strokes!

sean gramophone, Friday, 22 April 2022 03:33 (one month ago) link

Is This Sault?

Ned Raggett, Friday, 22 April 2022 03:35 (one month ago) link

Not into this at all. Fitting that Pitchfork finally gave them a BNM for this.

― Indexed

Lol, I don’t follow pitchfork actively but this is somewhat hilarious. It’s the only Sault album I wouldn’t recommend to someone as an introduction to them… hopefully most people reading pitchfork were already familiar with them.

✖✖✖ (Moka), Friday, 22 April 2022 06:08 (one month ago) link

It feels like a consolation prize. “Hey sorry we slept on this project’s amazing run of albums in the past years, here’s a BNM to make up for it”

✖✖✖ (Moka), Friday, 22 April 2022 06:12 (one month ago) link

They did review two others…

begrudgingly bound by duty of candor (morrisp), Friday, 22 April 2022 06:18 (one month ago) link

Untitled albums got reviewed like 7 months after they came out - possibly for reader’s eoy lists? It was a strange move to release a review so many months later… no idea the reasoning behind it - And neither got BNM.

✖✖✖ (Moka), Friday, 22 April 2022 15:23 (one month ago) link

I so would like to at least, see Cleo perform live sometime. I keep checking her website but to no avail. sadface

― Swanswans, Tuesday, April 5, 2022 11:35 PM (one month ago)


Hiiiii my first headline show in London 🇬🇧
Tickets go on sale tomorrow at 10am
Looking forward to seeing all your beautiful faces ☺️

— Cleo (@cleosol) May 5, 2022

groovypanda, Thursday, 5 May 2022 11:13 (three weeks ago) link

Thanks for the tip! I have high expectations for this one.

mmmm, Friday, 6 May 2022 09:25 (three weeks ago) link

Luos Higher made me think of Biophilia (Moon / Solstice) and is the track that stood out for me

Nabozo, Friday, 6 May 2022 11:37 (three weeks ago) link

amazing, except I'm not in London, hives me hope she'll do a European tour tho

Swanswans, Friday, 6 May 2022 16:03 (three weeks ago) link

This new single's a Cleo Sol cowrite

Ned Raggett, Friday, 6 May 2022 23:42 (three weeks ago) link

'Barry' on HBO used "Foot On Necks" as the over-credits track on the newest episode. Hope a lot of people Shazam'ed them...

Soundslike, Wednesday, 18 May 2022 00:53 (one week ago) link

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