Inc.: Local Bands We Love

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Inc.’s teens are growing up and are trying to figure out how what it takes to be men.

Formerly known as Teen Inc., the brothers Aged (Daniel and Andrew) are post-millenial LA-stalwarts whose prodigious RnB jazz-funk talents have seen them recording and/or touring with everyone from 50 Cent to Elton John to Beck to Raphael Saadiq.

I saw them perform years ago at a smokey after-hours party (in retrospect, ironically called Grown) and I was a) sure that they were WAYYYY too young to be in that spot at 3am on a Tuesday and b) sure that they were the tightest performers I’d EVER seen play live. Riding a seriously deep, slow kiss groove that hasn’t really been done like this in almost 3 decades, Inc. has less to do with current RnB sounds or even 90s RnB and more closely approximates Prince at his Lovesexiest and Sade at her most Promising.

Signed by 4AD last summer, Inc. has released a couple of singles and is finally set to release their debut album, No World in mid-February. As debuts go, this is a stunningly self-assured release that isn’t afraid to take on “quiet storm” “smooth jazz” vibes is all the stronger for it. On “The Place,” “Seventeen,” and “Desert Rose,” Inc. explore red-lit ambience and whispery come-hither-isms but they don’t fake the funk for even a second.

As words go, I generally resist use of “sexy” as I think it’s rarely (if ever) appropriate. However, No World is definitely that. And much much more. This is one of those albums whose virtuosity, energy and sincerity will change the landscape in 2013 and for years to come.