Talkhouse Weekend Playlist: Organic Sounds from High Pulp

The Seattle band celebrate their new album with this Earth Day playlist.

High Pulp is a band that eludes any genre categorization. Personally, I love that kind of band. Combining elements of jazz, shoegaze, electronica, and much more, the band’s latest album, Pursuit of Ends, has a rich, raw quality to it. With Earth Day around the corner, drummer Bobby Granfelt handpicked these Earth-y tracks that inspire High Pulp’s organic sound.
—Keenan Kush, Talkhouse Director of Operations

Stereolab — “Brakhage”
It’s almost impossible for us to quantify the amount of inspiration we take from Stereolab, and specifically this record, Dots & Loops. We often talk internally about how so many of the records we love are “one of one,” essentially something that you can’t get anywhere else, something that is authentically unique and breaking into uncharted/undefinable territory. This song, and this record as a whole, is a North Star for us in that sense.

Theon Cross — “We Go Again”
First of all, shoutout to the tuba, a slept-on instrument. Second of all, the whole jazz movement that has gone on in the UK has without a doubt been an inspiration for us.

Shabazz Palaces — “free press & curl”
Seattle’s finest, truest, and most undeniable luminaries: Shabazz Palaces. I could write a book about Shabazz and their inspiration on our music, but I won’t. Just listen and learn.

Erika Dohi, Immanuel Wilkins — “Replicant”
People often ask us to define our music, and it feels short-sighted to say “jazz,” or “fusion” or anything like that to be honest. We think of our music as cinematic, mood-based, vignettes, settings, smells, emotions — and this track from Erika Dohi and Immanuel Wilkins is a great representation of something that falls into those latter descriptions, as opposed to stale and limiting genre-based definitions.

Resavoir — “Resavoir”
The synths! The baseline! The vocals! WHAT?! Come on now…

Joe Henderson — “Invitation”
We’ve been in sort of a Joe Henderson hole for the last few months as a band. His compositions, his tone, and his clarity amongst dense ideas are all inspiring for us as instrumentalists. Maybe the best thing about this track though is not the virtuosity but the composition itself — the way it tells a story so convincingly… The six minutes fly by.

Miles Davis — “Boplicity”
Birth Of The Cool is frequently, if not constantly talked about when we are doing horn arrangements. Gil Evans and Miles essentially left us a holy text with this record. So much game in this.

Tortoise — “In Sarah, Mencken, Christ, and Beethoven, There Were Women And Men”
Numerous times people have brought up Tortoise after hearing our music, but frankly, we hadn’t listened to them a ton (at all, for some of us). After enough comparisons we finally dove in, and our only takeaway is that we should have done it sooner. The combination of drum machines, house music, improvisation, drones, and synthesizers, is what makes this a ground-breaking, genre-defiant, undeniable song.

Immortal Nightbody — “Aufhebung”
I was caught by the album art on this one day when I was cruising around Bandcamp. I’d never heard something that blends hip-hop, ’80s jangly chorus-laden guitars, and genuinely raw emotion. I’ve been bumping this whole album non-stop since. It is one of one.

Kelis, Andre 3000 — “Millionaire”
Andre 3000 catches a Prince vibe?! With Kelis?! Lucid.

(Feature photo credit: Will Matsuda.)