Every Monday through Friday, we deliver a different song as part our Song of the Day podcast subscription. This podcast features exclusive KEXP in-studio performances, unreleased songs, and recordings from independent artists that our DJs think you should hear. Today’s selection, featured on the Afternoon Show with Kevin Cole, is “Emanuel Ciccolini” by The Cactus Channel from the 2012 album Haptics on HopeStreet Recordings.
The ten Melbourne teenagers who comprise the retro-funk instrumental group The Cactus Channel first discovered the classic soul sounds of the 70s when they were 14, and since then, they’ve taken the traditional values of that era to heart. Their first releases were on 7″ vinyl, their analog-recorded debut album was recorded and released soon after, and to top it all off, they did it all before they all hit the age of 18. Now (barely) legal, the group have left their jazz band days behind them and are embarking on dates across Australia, bringing an undeniably youthful energy to every venue that they can
legally enter play. The soundtrack to a 1960s chase scene, “Emanuel Ciccolini” moves along with a slinky bass line as stabbing horns and scratching guitar accent the peaks and valleys of the song’s intensity. Not unlike something one would find on the similarly-minded Daptone Records, “Emanuel Ciccolini” is a prime slice of classically-indebted funk: raw, youthful, and the epitome of cool.
The Cactus Channel’s next gig is in their native Australia, but in case they ever make it up to the Northern Hemisphere, keep an eye on the teens’ website and Facebook. In the meantime, watch a video of the band playing “Emanuel Ciccolini”: