Well, that worked out well… not a lot of new releases this week, and then BOOM! A nice stack of used goods walks through the door. Not to say that the new releases this week aren’t good, cuz there’s some great stuff in there too, but now you’ve got the best of both worlds!
…..pick of the week…..
Tim Hecker: Mirages (Kranky) LP
This is the first vinyl issue for Tim Hecker’s classic 2004 album! “Incredibly rich, sumptuous album from Tim Hecker, layering his particular blend of organic ambience with slivers of piano, found sounds and the quiet hum of abandoned machinery. Playing counterpart to the processed acoustic transmissions of Fennesz, Hecker takes a much darker route, only offering relief from the mass of textures he concocts with deep buried remnants of melody and light. As a follow-up to Mille Plateaux’s sublime “Radio Amor”, “Mirages” is an even more majestic album, striding with a confident heaviness further out into the wilderness, deep into the night..” – Boomkat // “…the keyboard parts on Mirages are prettier, and the overall mood is more contemplative, but there’s a deep pit of melancholy at the center of the record, a mood with a strongly cumulative effect.” – Pitchfork // “The opener, Acephale,” first erupts into a teeth-gnashing guitar solo before nodding off into an absinthe stupor, while the highlights, “Neither More or Less” and “Celestina” are both brooding stroboscope soundtracks.” – XLR8R
File Under: Electronic, Ambient, CanCon, Kranky
Bill Callahan: Dream River (Drag City) LP/CD
Cabin crew, prepare for landing! Gliding through low altitudes, Bill Callahan has set his sites on the runway. It is 2013 and he’s ready to land again, with a full cargo for the people down below on earth. From way up high, everything looks so small. But then you land and it swallows you whole. You disappear into the little models, and the trains keep rolling by. And the lights go on and off again. And the trucks on the highway, bound for parts unknown. In the song-world of Bill Callahan, the present realities tumble ecstatically like cloth in the wind – sheets and flags and clothes. These things borne aloft are not simply physical details in the landscape, but the contours of an emotional one as well. Bill’s a cartographer way out there, tracing the coastlines, telling the tales he has discovered along the way. Some seen in life and others in mind’s eye, they float down Dream River with humble eminence. Dialed into the mindset, the Dream River instrumental crew man a hovercraft that bears the songs along, humming deeply with bass and percolating with the abiding resonance of hands drumming on skins, the lively popping of claves. Guitar strums fan into blooms of smoke, sliced through by other guitars taking other forms – shards of mirrors, plumes of ignition, telephone wires, snakes and ladders plunging through the depths of the sky. The musical modes are exquisite, aquatic; shifting in delicate but deliberate undetectable time as Bill’s lyrics wander from yard to yard.
File Under: SSW, Indie, Smog
Crystal Stilts: Nature Noir (Sacred Bones) CD
Crystal Stilts first came to attention with a self-titled EP in 2005 and 2008’s Alight of Night, an early ripple in what would soon be perceived of as a wave of fuzzy, reverb laden bands memorably dubbed “Jangle-Schrammelpop” by one German reviewer. The intervening years have seen the band grow and evolve, with 2011’s robust In Love With Oblivion, and the Radiant Door EP, their debut release for Sacred Bones. Founded by vocalist Brad Hargett and guitarist JB Townsend, Crystal Stilts have since come to include Andy Adler on bass, Keegan Cooke on drums, and organist Kyle Forester. Together the five-piece have crafted the band’s latest LP, Nature Noir. Recorded in the damp spring of 2013, this newest offering finds the group expanding their palette to include strings, percussion, and synthesizers, to create a record that is both more sonically adventurous and a more personal and humane statement than their previous work. On tracks such as “Star Crawl” and “Sticks and Stones,” Hargett’s vocals have a striking clarity and soulfulness, while the musical arrangements throughout display a sophistication that may be surprising to those who previously thought of the band as “lo-fi.” Meanwhile, album opener “Spirit in Front of Me” and the ripping “Future Folklore” showcase the psychedelic grit that has long been a trademark sound.
Destruction Unit: Deep Trip (Sacred Bones) LP
Destruction Unit is an American band formed in the Sonoran desert of Arizona. Dug up from the sonic landfills of the cosmos, these radical desert dwellers have built a reputation for both mesmerizing and terrorizing crowds with their sheer power and intensity. Formed by Ryan Rousseau, D. Unit was initially a synth-heavy three piece whose other members were Jay Reatard and Alicja Trout (Lost Sounds); likewise Rousseau was also in the Reatards before Jay went solo. Born out of the nucleus of the Memphis Goner Records scene and transplanted into Tempe, AZ, Rousseau has grown the band in the last few years into a full sonic assault, which now includes three guitar players (himself, Nick Nappa and Jesco Aurelius), his brother Rusty Rousseau on bass, and a 19 year-old classically trained drummer, Andrew Flores. This line-up has released several cassettes on their own label Ascetic House, a small run LP, Void on Jolly Dream and most recently a limited edition 7″ on Suicide Squeeze. Deep Trip is their first proper studio album, produced by Ben Greenberg of The Men, Hubble, and Pygmy Shrews at Vacation Island in NY. It’s the first long player which truly captures their burning spirits. Morphine boogie for the 21st century noise addict. A spiritual odyssey of sadomasochistic self-loathing with songs about love and freedom. Selling drugs to make music to sell drugs to; aggressive psychedelic sprawl at its finest. The future of Rock and Roll burning through three twin reverbs and a pound of grass.
El-P & Killer Mike: Run the Jewels (Fool’s Gold) LP
El P + Killer Mike = Run The Jewels. Rap’s most dangerous duo have teamed up with Fool’s Gold for their debut album. Ten tracks of speaker obliterating beats and razor sharp verses, laced with searingly honest emotion and pitch black humor. “Best New Music” – Pitchfork. “Album Of The Week” – Stereogum. “A rambunctious, flying elbow drop of an album” – CMJ.
File Under: Rap, Hip Hop
John Foxx & The Belbury Circle: Empty Avenues (Ghost Box) 10”/CD
The EP features four songs, an instrumental and a remix of the title track Empty Avenues by Pye Corner Audio. The Belbury Circle is Jim Jupp of Belbury Poly and Jon Brooks of the Advisory Circle, and for this debut collaborative EP on Ghost Box they are joined by stalwart of British Electronica, John Foxx. The music of The Belbury Circle occupies the overlapping territories of Belbury Poly and The Advisory Circle. Foxx’s songs are perfectly framed by haunting pastoral electronics, with perhaps a stronger pop sensibility than previous Ghost Box releases. Brooks and Jupp readily site Foxx as a key influence on their work and as a result his distinctive voice occupies their soundworld effortlessly. Like all Ghost Box records, it comes in Julian House’s elegant and luxurious packaging, with variant covers for the CD and 10″ vinyl versions. The 10″ also comes with free download codes.
File Under: Ghost Box, John Foxx, Ultravox, Library Pop
Jacuzzi Boys: s/t (Hardy Art) LP
In the year 2007, Jacuzzi Boys hatched inside a vulture’s nest from deep within the Florida wilds, three radioactive chicks cawing for their piece of the electric rock pie. With No Seasons (Florida’s Dying) they freaked their way through the swamps, a psycho stomp of a record, all hallucinations and hand claps. Glazin’ (Hardly Art) found a more polished sound. They installed AC units inside their mobile homes, found a way to turn neon into ice cubes. Now, with their third full-length and second for Hardly Art, the self-titled Jacuzzi Boys, they’re going grand, building limestone monuments to those that boogied before them, while writing hypnotic ear worms by the light of a cigarette. Gone is the swamp-thing snarl. In it’s place, the indestructible cool of the casino slot-jockey with nothing to lose. Recorded at Key Club Recording Co. in Benton Harbor, Michigan – same as 2011’s Glazin’ – the new record takes full advantage of expert engineers Bill Skibbe and Jessica Ruffins’ sonic sandlot, with Kramer in charge of mastering. The end result is a smashing set of tunes as dazzling as a sparkler. It’s like that movie you once saw. The one with the boy and the girl and the plastic lounger on the beach. “Be My Prism” was the invitation. “Black Gloves” and “Double Vision” the promise. “Dust” was the rising tide. “Rubble,” the dirty uncle. “Hotline” was the lightning storm, and “Ultraglide” was the ending, the part where he drove her home with the windows down. You remember you liked it. It stayed with you while you swam alone in your pool that night. LP includes digital download.
Ketamines: You Can Only Serve One Master (Mammoth Cave) LP
“Eleven songs shot straight to yer heart in the time it takes to make a well done cheese pizza. That’s my real time summation of the newest Ketamines platter. Cleaner guitar tones than in the past, lots of fancy panning, a real classy affair and, above all, a step forward. TUNES, dude! The folks really stepped up the melodies and manicured some freaking grand pop confections this time. “Everybody Gets Down” has some horny Motown bump and snotty Archies snarl. Is that a thing? Well, it is now. The ‘verb has been stripped back, letting the sunshine in. Lots of high points here, and it takes a few listens to horn it all into your noggin. Not cuz it’s a prog-tastic burble-fest – quite the opposite, in fact. Brevity is the order of the day here, in and out, real sneaky-like. A ripped Paul Revere and the Raiders has words with Johnny Ramone lookalikes behind the 7-Eleven (DOUBLE ELEVENS). “Thank Me Forever” ends the whole enterprise with a nice kiss on the lips and some alligator tears raining down a neon street. Unexpected. Fun. Honest. Light a smoke and get out there. It’s happening. Y’know what I mean? (Oh yeah, and I like my pizza WELL DONE).” – Weird Canada
Blind Willie McTell: Complete Recorded Works Vol 3 (Thirdman) LP
Third Man Records is thrilled to announce the release of the first three records in their highly-anticipated Document Records reissue series. This is a collaboration with Document Records in making the most important of American blues music available on vinyl. Blind Willie McTell’s Volume 3 from Third Man’s highly-anticipated Document Records reissue series on black 180-gram vinyl, remastered by Document’s very own Gary Atkinson and features brand new artwork by Grammy-award-winning designer Rob Jones. The recordings we’ll be presenting in this reissue series are the building blocks and DNA of American culture. Blues, R&B, Elvis, teenagerism, punk rock… it all goes back to these vital, breathtaking recordings.
Mississippi Sheiks: Complete Recorded Works Vol 3 (Thirdman) LP
Third Man Records is thrilled to announce the release of the first three records in their highly-anticipated Document Records reissue series. This is a collaboration with Document Records in making the most important of American blues music available on vinyl. The Mississippi Sheiks’ Volume 3 from Third Man’s highly-anticipated Document Records reissue series on black 180-gram vinyl, remastered by Document’s very own Gary Atkinson and features brand new artwork by Grammy-award-winning designer Rob Jones. The recordings we’ll be presenting in this reissue series are the building blocks and DNA of American culture. Blues, R&B, Elvis, teenagerism, punk rock… it all goes back to these vital, breathtaking recordings.
Obits: Bed & Bugs (Sub Pop) LP/CD
Obits is a four-piece band who currently live in Brooklyn, NY, and whose music is probably considered an occupant of the rock music genre, specifically in the areas of garage, punk, surf, surf-punk, and garage-punk (though, not surf-garage). On their new album, they’ve also covered a song (“Besetchet”) from volume 23 of the excellent Ethiopiques series. Entitled Bed & Bugs, it is the third full-length album by Obits, following 2009’s I Blame You and 2011’s Moody, Standard and Poor. Bed & Bugs was recorded somewhere in Arlington, VA at an unnamed recording studio, simply titled “upstairs.” This recording was accomplished by Nikhil Ranade, and the resulting songs were later mixed, variously, by Ranade with Eli Janney and Geoff Sanoff. On listening to Bed & Bugs, the discerning listener may well note more than a passing similarity to such bands as Hot Snakes, Edsel, Drive Like Jehu, Girls Against Boys, Pitchfork, possibly Television or the Wipers. This is un-coincidental! With the exception of those last two, Obits share members with all of those bands. There are scenes and there are connections; trending hashtags and experiences. It’s cool, these are not either/or propositions and there’s no need to postulate any us vs. any them, the kids today and the back in my day. Much of what’s best about any music, all art, across genres, within and beyond the latest craze, is the way it speaks to some definition of “us.” Proving, as Obits sing in Bed & Bugs’ “Receptor,” that “You ain’t the world’s lone receptor,” is deeply valuable. Because we’re all headed to the same place: me today, you tomorrow. And, in that waning interstitial space, let’s go ahead and have what we want. No need to choose: make ours both Bed & Bugs. Die cut single-LP sleeve with custom dust sleeve and MP3 coupon from Sup Pop. Includes bonus 7″!
Charlie Patton: Complete Recorded Works Vol 3 (Thirdman) LP
Third Man Records is thrilled to announce the release of the first three records in their highly-anticipated Document Records reissue series. This is a collaboration with Document Records in making the most important of American blues music available on vinyl. Charley Patton’s Volume 3 from Third Man’s highly-anticipated Document Records reissue series on black 180-gram vinyl, remastered by Document’s very own Gary Atkinson and features brand new artwork by Grammy-award-winning designer Rob Jones. The recordings we’ll be presenting in this reissue series are the building blocks and DNA of American culture. Blues, R&B, Elvis, teenagerism, punk rock… it all goes back to these vital, breathtaking recordings.
Refused: Everlasting EP (ORG) LP
After a short lived reunion in 2012, Swedish hardcore legends Refused reissue their Startrec EP Everlasting in coordination with the Original Recordings Group. Recorded in 1994 but not released in the US until 1997, Everlasting is more metallic than Refused’s earlier releases, and showcases the band in their prime. Rated alongside the band’s 1998 full-length masterpiece The Shape of Punk to Come as among the band’s best work, the raw 7-song set represents progressive hardcore at its best with frank, well executed political edicts throughout. Everlasting gets its first pressing in 15 years and comes repackaged for a limited edition run of 3,000 copies with new, exclusive artwork.
Sebadoh: Defend Yourself (Joyful Noise) LP
In 1986, Lou Barlow split off from Dinosaur Jr. and eventually teamed-up with Jason Loewenstein to pursue a strain of musical ideas and aspirations that didn’t fit in with Dino’s sound. The project he started working on came to be known as Sebadoh, named after a string of nonsense lyrical filler syllables Barlow would frequently murmur into the microphone. Along with Pavement and Guided By Voices, Sebadoh is credited as the deathless ‘primal father’ of the lo-fi aesthetic. Sebadoh now returns with their first new full-length LP in 14 years entitled Defend Yourself. The 13-song set finds longtime collaborators Barlow and Lowenstein joined by Bob D’Amico of the Fiery Furnaces on drums. Ending a substantial hiatus, Defend Yourself is more of an organic reformation than a comeback album. Defend Yourself is saturated with songs of heartache relating to the divorce from his wife and partner of 25 years. The new album also marks a return to the self-recorded DIY ethos of early Sebadoh albums (Sebadoh III, Bakesale). A handful of sour experiences with major labels led Sebadoh to self-record and self-produce their new album. Though this is hardly the band’s first experience with home recording, technological advances beyond the 4-track cassette have allowed Defend Yourself to easily rank among Sebadoh’s most sonically-engaging albums to date.
Shadowy Men On A Shadowy Planet: Savvy Show Stoppers (Mammoth Cave) LP
Mammoth Cave Recording Company is proud to release the first in a series of reissues of the Shadowy Men On A Shadowy Planet catalogue. Remastered from the original tapes and presented on deluxe 180-gram vinyl with a gatefold sleeve, featuring new artworkby Shadowy Men’s Don Pyle himself. Featuring such classics as the Having An Average Weekend (The Kids In the Hall Theme), Zombie Compromise and Shadowy Countdown. 18 classic hits, don’t miss out!
File Under: Surf, Kids in the Hall, CanCon, Classic
The Advisory Circle: Mind How You Go (Ghost Box) CD
The Advisory Circle: As The Crow Flies (Ghost Box) CD
Beach Boys: Pet Sounds (Capitol) LP
Belbury Poly: Farmers Angle (Ghost Box) 10″
Belbury Poly: From An Ancient Star (Ghost Box) CD
Belbury Poly: The Willows (Ghost Box) CD
Broadcast: Berberian Sound Studio (Warp) LP
City & Colour: Bring Me Your Love (Dine Alone) LP
John Coltrane: A Love Supreme (Impulse) LP
Miles Davis: Kind of Blue (Legacy) LP
Dead Kennedys: Gimme Convenience… (Manifesto) LP
Death: For The Whole World to See (Drag City) LP/CD
Faust: iv (Virgin) LP
Flaming Lips: Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots (Warner) LP
Flying Lotus: Los Angeles (Warp) LP
Focus Group: Sketches & Spells (Ghost Box) CD
Focus Group: Elektrik Karousel (Ghost Box) LP
Focus Group: We Are All Pan’s People (Ghost Box) CD
Funkadelic: Maggot Brain (4 Men With Beards) LP
La Planete Sauvage OST (Pathe) LP
Thelonious Monk: Straight No Chaser (Music on Vinyl) LP
Mount Vernon Arts Lab: The Seance at Hobs Lane (Ghost Box) CD
New Order: Brotherhood (Rhino) LP
New Order: Low Life (Rhino) LP
New Order: Power, Corruption & Lies (Rhino) LP
New Order: Technique (Rhino) LP
No Age: An Object (Sub Pop) LP
Notorious B.I.G.: Ready to Die (Rhino) LP
Pop Group: For How Much Longer… (Rough Trade) LP
Propaghandi: How To Clean Everything (Fat) LP
Pye Corner Audio: Sleep Games (Ghost Box) LP
Roj: The Tansactional Dharma of (Ghost Box) CD
Skip Spence: Oar (Sundazed) LP
Talking Heads: Fear of Music (Rhino) LP
Tragically Hip: Up To Here (Music on Vinyl) LP
Jack White: Blunderbuss (Thirdman) LP
Wilco: Yankee Hotel Foxtrot (Nonesuch) LP
Frank Zappa: Freak Out! (Zappa) LP
AC/DC: Back in Black (Atlantic) LP
AC/DC: For Those About to Rock (Atlantic) LP
Luther Allison: Luther’s Blues (Motown) LP
The Band: Last Waltz (Warner) 3LP
Beach Boys: Spirit of America (Capitol) LP
Beatles: Abbey Road (Apple) LP
Beatles: !962-1966 (Capitol) LP
Beatles: 1967-1970 (Blue) (Capitol) 2LP
Bealtes: Magical Mystery Tour (Capitol) LP
Beatles: Hey Jude (Capitol) LP
Beatles: Revolver (Capitol) LP
Beatles: Rubber Soul (Capitol) LP
Beatles: White Album (Apple) LP
Black Sabbath: Paranoid (Warner) LP
Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young: Deja Vu (Atlantic) LP
Marvin Gaye: Greatest Hits (Motown) LP
Marvin Gaye: Let’s Get it On (Motown) LP
Buddy Guy: A Man & The Blues (Vanguard) LP
Johnny Hammond: Breakout (Kudu) LP
Jimi Hendrix: Axis: Bold as Love (Reprise) LP
Jimi Hendrix: Essential Jimi Hendrix (Warner) LP
Jimi Hendrix: Electric Ladyland (Reprise) LP
Buddy Holly: Greatest Hits (MCA) LP
John Lee Hooker: Driftin’ Through the Blues (United) LP
Howlin’ Wolf: London Sessions (Chess) LP
Iron Maiden: Piece of Mind (Harvest) LP
B.B. King: The Soul of (United) LP
B.B. King: Indianola Mississippi Seeds (ABC) LP
B.B. King: Take It Home (MCA) LP
Led Zeppelin: s/t (Atlantic) LP
Led Zeppelin: II (Atlantic) LP
Led Zeppelin: IV (Atlantic) LP
Memphis Slim: Raining the Blues (Fantasy) 2LP
Wilson Pickett: Greatest Hits (Atlantic) LP
Otis Redding: Best of (Atco) 2LP
Rolling Stones: Goat’s Head Soup (WEA) LP
Rolling Stones: Let It Bleed (London) LP
Rolling Stones: Some Girls (WEA) LP
Run D.M.C.: Raising Hell (Profile) LP
Otis Spann: Cryin’ Time (Vanguard) LP
Otis Spann: Heart Loaded with Trouble (Bluesway) LP
Small Faces: There Are But Four Small Faces (Immediate) LP
Small Faces: Ogden’s Nutgone Flake (Daffodil) LP
Bruce Springsteen: Darkness on the Edge of Town (Columbia) LP
Takin’ Care of Business OST (Motown) LP
Muddy Waters: Can’t Get No Grindin’ (Chess) LP
Muddy Waters: After the Rain (Chess) LP
Stevie Wonder: Fullfillingness’ First Finale (Motown) LP
Neil Young: After The Gold Rush (Reprise) LP