Morning Becomes Eclectic playlist, April 10, 2023

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Meridian Brothers get down live in KCRW’s Annenberg Performance Studio. Photo by Anthony Valadez.

Meridian Brothers are the latest in a series of legendary acts to darken KCRW’s doorway (See: recent sessions with Lee Fields, The Church, and Seal to name a few). Formed in 1998 as a vehicle for the experimental whims of Colombian guitarist and composer Eblis Alvarez, the group has since evolved into a touring five-piece to bring Alvarez’s wild imagination to life.  

The band, consisting of Alvarez (lead guitar and vocals), Maria Valencia (saxophone, clarinet, percussion and synthesizers), Mauricio Ramirez (Percussion), Cesar Quevedo (bass), and Alejandro Forero (electronics and synthesizers) bring a playful energy to the Annenberg Performance Studio that’s sure to add a pep to your step. Their style finds them channeling popular Latin American rhythms, augmented by sampling techniques, elaborate effect processing, and Eblis’ quirky and theatrical vocals into the imaginary characters of the group’s Best Of 2022 album, the conceptual Meridian Brothers y el Grupo Renacimiento (the first release from the newly-revived Ansonia Records).

Album highlights like “Bomba Atomica,” “Donde Estás Maria,” and “Metamorfosis” are all in the mix for today’s set, which also features a conversation between Alvarez and MBE co-host Anthony Valadez touching on Alvarez’s past life as a professor, his childhood music conservatory experience, and creating the fictitious El Grupo Renacimiento.

Plus, the (surprisingly) UK-based LA Priest drops the extra-wavy single “It’s You” ahead of forthcoming LP Fase Luna (due May 5 via Domino). We also dip further into soul sensation Devon Gilfillian’s sophomore album Love You Anyway (out now), and drop a few classics along the way — including the Avalanches sampling Nancy Wilson circa 1964, and a peek into what Kate Bush was up to in 1981.





Anna Chang