…..news letter #782 – full up…..

Oi! Big week, some great soundtracks and some super great reissues. As well as some sweet new releases too. Another busy evening for me here so I’ll leave you to it. Enjoy….

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…..pick of the week…..

un uomo.jpgEnnio Morricone: Un Uomo Da Rispettare (Superior Viaduct) LP
In Tomorrow… Un Uomo Da Rispettare translates to “A Man to Respect,” which can easily be said of Ennio Morricone himself—the unparalleled maestro of the soundtrack. This 1972 crime film stars Kirk Douglas as a master safecracker at a crossroads in his life, emerging from prison yet tempted by one last big job. Morricone builds the main theme around Cicci Santucci’s flugelhorn as riveting leitmotifs reprise amidst variations of noir-jazz abstraction to frame the composer’s grand vision. A strident, two-note piano phrase sets the mood of heightened tension, while muted timpani and trance-like descending bass patterns sweep dramatically across the cinematic stereo field. On “18 Pari,” slinky rhythms and softened wah-wah guitars offer a distinctly Italian library music, adding elements of lightness to the overall avant-garde score. Un Uomo Da Rispettare’s dissonant chords and angular arrangements recall Morricone’s free improvisation work with Gruppo D’Improvvisazione Nuova Consonanza. This first-time vinyl reissue is recommended for fans of Krzysztof Penderecki, Harry Partch and Sun City Girls. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!

File Under: OST, Maestro
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…..new arrivals…..

barreca

Marc Barreca: Music Works for Industry (Freedom to Spend) LP
Music Works for Industry is a layered assertion, a phrase to turn over in the mind like so many loops on these recordings. Made with performance artists, musicians, and an instrument maker, Marc Barreca has spliced multiple labors into a collective whole. Barreca’s album offers succinct electronic compositions with social subtexts. Friend and fellow musician K. Leimer names Cluster, Steve Reich, and Iannis Xenakis as Barreca’s contemporaries. Using synthesizers and altered, modified, and looped instruments and voices, Barreca manipulates sound into minimal arrangements. Ranging from under two minutes to just over four, each song is a fragment of modern life. On the second track, “Shopping”, ominous, whooshing, mechanical sounds are layered over with light, playful tones, perhaps representative of the clash of  production versus exchange values. On “Hotcake” we hear men’s voices, chains and hissing steam in a methodical but urgent progression that could be a soundtrack to the silent film, Metropolis. “Georgetown” assembles a dark, warm, video game ambiance slowed down to a walking pace. A woman’s voice coos seductively “Nerve Roots are Uncontrollable,” on the track of the same name. And on “Organized Labor” the music wobbles along quite appropriately as a voice speaks the acronym I.W.W. and you realize he is speaking of the International Workers of the World, also known as the Wobblies. On the cover is a black and white photo of a figure in silhouette, backlit at a window, softened with curtains and plants. Maybe this is the room where the music was made: a private space, a refuge from industrial work. In a way, listening to the music is entering a space without work. One can imagine photographer Chauncey Hare listening to Music Works for Industry while documenting American office interiors. Soon after, Hare was driven to leave photography and become a therapist, publishing the self-help book, Work Abuse, in 1997. Perhaps peering into industry led to Barreca’s own career move. While exploring the original cassette, we found a business card was found tucked inside: Marc Barreca—bankruptcy judge in Seattle. Material traces of the cassette are evident in the record’s packaging. The album is a new form for the reissue. But even in post-industrial times, Barreca’s music offers listeners easily consumable musings on current work conditions.

File Under: Electronic, Abstract, Industrial
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besnard

Besnard Lakes: Are the Divine Wind (Jagjaguwar) LP
Early in 2016, The Besnard Lakes released their finest album to date, the magisterial A Coliseum Complex Museum and toured worldwide throughout the following months. Jace Lasek and Olga Goreas, the couple at the heart of the band, had spent the previous summer on their annual retreat to their namesake Besnard Lake. In a place with so much personal significance, they spent time writing the music that was to form the album. Culling the tracks down to an album proved a difficult task and inevitably there were tracks they loved that just didn’t quite fit with the overall album. So it is with delight that almost exactly a year on, the band are able to release this 12″ of two brand new, exclusive tracks written and recorded at the same time as the album. “Laura Lee” is a sibling track to the album’s illustrious first single, “The Golden Lion” – spacious reverb-y drums echo around an almost sci-fi vocal line sung by Goreas. Meanwhile, the title track “The Divine Wind” is the Besnard Lakes at their expansive, psychedelic best: a sustained keyboard building through to a bombastic coda, complete with Lasek’s unmistakable falsetto. If you ever needed a reminder of just how unique, beautiful and far-reaching this band is, then The Besnard Lakes Are the Divine Wind delivers.

File Under: Indie Rock
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bevis

Bevis Frond: It Just Is (Fire) LP
Released in 1993 ‘It Just Is’ was dedicated to one of Nick Saloman’s favourite guitarists Ollie Halsall, this beautifully poignant album is stripped back similarly to the earlier Bevis Frond releases with Nick going solo. Playing everything on the record, the hard hitting ‘Desperate’, ‘What’s It All About’ and ‘Can’t Stop Lying’ are notably more downbeat whilst the psych pop of ‘Dreamboat Sinking’ and ‘Day One’s lyrics make “this album for the dedicated Frond obsessive more than anyone else” (Allmusic).

 File Under: Psych, Power Pop
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beyene

Girma Beyene & Akale Wube: Ethiopiques 30 (Heavenly Sweetness) LP
Girma Bèyènè is a true legend when it comes to Ethiopian music. After an exile to the United States and a radio silence that lasted 25 years, he jubilantly accepted the invitation from the French group Akalé Wubé to return to the spotlight and perform once more. The comeback took place last September during a memorable concert alongside Akalé Wubé at the Studio de l’Ermitage (Paris 20). Tracks (Arte), Le Monde, Libération relayed this major event, which aroused many strong emotions amongst fans of Ethiopian Music. The adventure could not stop just yet… Under the direction of Francis Falceto (director of the famous Ethiopiques series) Girma and Akalé Wubé came together and recorded this album in order to immortalize this renaissance.

File Under: World, Ethiopian
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blanck-mass

Blanck Mass: World Eater (Sacred Bones) LP
As humans, we are aware of our inner beast and should therefore be able to control it. We understand our hard-wired primal urges and why they exist in an evolutional sense. We understand the relationship between mind and body. Highly evolved and intelligent, we should be able to recognize these genetic hangovers and control them as a means to act positively and move forward as a compassionate species. Unfortunately, this is not the case. Recent global events have proven this. The human race is consuming itself. World Eater, the new album by Benjamin John Power’s Blanck Mass project, is a reaction to this. There is an underlying violence and anger throughout the record, even though some of these tracks are the closest Power has ever come to writing, in his words, “actual love songs.” “Maybe subconsciously this was some kind of countermeasure to restore some personal balance,” Power explains. On World Eater, Power further perfects the propulsive, engrossing electronic music he has created throughout his impressive decade-plus career, both under the Blanck Mass moniker and as one-half of Fuck Buttons, as he elaborates upon the sound of 2015’s brilliant double album Dumb Flesh. As massive as the sonic world of the new record often feels, its greatest achievement is in its maximization of a limited set of tools, a restriction intentionally set by Power himself.

File Under: Experimental, Electronic
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brokeback

Brokeback: Illinois River Valley Blues (Thrill Jockey) LP
A sense of place has been essential to the music of Brokeback since guitarist/bassist Douglas McCombs first launched the project in 1995. Initially conceived as a solo outlet, the Chicago group has taken on new dimensions over the past two decades, morphing from the lean, pastoral ambience of the first album, Field Recordings from the Cook County Water Table, to the more muscular, taut arrangements and dynamic swells of the last release, Brokeback and the Black Rock, for which McCombs assembled a new quartet lineup. Each album develops with exacting detail, revealing McCombs’s gift for dialing in the essence of a mood, feeling, or distant locale with a handful of reverb-laden guitar tones, elegant and sustained, strategically placed and sparingly deployed. The instrumental landscapes he creates on Illinois River Valley Blues are utterly transportive, evoking familiar open-frontier soundtracks and charting out new sonic territory. Thematically this is McCombs’s most personal offering yet, reflecting on his early years growing up along the Illinois River corridor between Peoria and Chicago. The sepia-toned opener “Ride Ahead and Light the Way for Me” is drawn from memories of evening rides on the river with his father, while the noir album bookend “Night Falls on Chillicothe” is named for a river town north of Peoria near where McCombs’s grandparents lived. Though the inspiration is McCombs’s, the execution is wholly a group effort. With the same instrumentation and mostly the same lineup as the previous album, the band stretches its leader’s eternal fascination with the roots of American guitar music in bold new directions. A serpentine mystique runs through “Rise, Fernanda, Rise!,” and “Cairo Levee” conjures a desert atmosphere closer to the Sahara than the American southwest. Side one of the album closes with a moody, meditative take on “Spanish Venus,” a ballad written by cornetist and sometime Brokeback collaborator Rob Mazurek. Several songs feature lush, multi-layered vocals by Amalea Tshilds (the Paulina Hollers), who made a deep impression on McCombs with a spellbinding a cappella performance a couple years ago. McCombs’s singular approach to guitar and bass, characteristic of his work with Tortoise, is expertly enhanced here by James Elkington (Tweedy, Steve Gunn) on second guitar (moving over from drums on the last record). The two salute one of McCombs’s favorite bands, Television, with latticed dual leads on the stately yet aggressive “On the Move and Vanishing,” while Elkington’s subtle layers of pedal steel and organ burnish more ruminative forays like “Andalusia, IL” and “Ursula.” Their intertwining flights are anchored by the sturdy yet versatile rhythm team of bassist Pete Croke (Exit Verse, Tight Phantomz) and drummer Areif Sless-Kitain (the Eternals), the newest member of Brokeback. Illinois River Valley Blues is a winding, wistful travelogue that not only captures darker textures but mines their depths. That’s been part of McCombs’s vision for Brokeback from the start: “To me a song is not worth writing if it doesn’t have a strong sense of melancholy,” he says.

File Under: Post Rock
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astral

Coil: Astral Disaster (Prescription) LP
In 1998, Coil were invited to record at Sun Dial’s studios beneath the London Bridge Hop Exchange—a studio originally know as Samurai Studios, originally built and owned by Iron Maiden. The premises in Victorian times was an old debtors prison which had three underground levels, and still had the original chains, manacles and wrought iron doors from the old prison. This caught the attention of John Balance, who was very keen to record there. Coil spent a number of days recording at the studio during Halloween 1998. With Gary Ramon’s help, they developed a number of tracks, some of which resulted in this LP. Ramon produced and mixed the Astral Disaster recordings, as well as playing guitar and sitar on these sessions. A version of the album was later remixed by the band and released on their own label—but the Prescription mixes as released in 1999 are unique. This rare album was part of the legendary subscription-only Prescription label album series in the late 1990’s, issued in an edition of 99 signed and numbered copies, long since sold out. (If you are wondering, originals fetch £700+). This is the first time the album is being released officially since 1999. Taken from the original masters, this reissue comes with original sleeve artwork, insert, and the facsimile signatures of John Balance and Peter Christopherson that came with the first issue.

File Under: Ambient, Electronic, Industrial
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b85Coscia – Formini B85 (Schema) LP
Fonit’s “B 85”, part of the legendary Serie Usignolo, which bears the signatures of the mysterious Coscia (perhaps a moniker of accordionist Gianni?) and Formini, is another cult library music release: an orchestral pop record whose tracks are curiously recommended to accompany ‘viewings of vast parks, footage of agriculture, ads, moving crowds and congested traffic jams, American working-class districts’ with hilarious titles such as “Dayda”, “Schizzo”, “Palmas”, “Murlak” (which casts an incredible fuzz guitar), “Bronx” and “Ciresa Facaud”. In two words: a must! Although library music has always had the purpose of accompanying TV and radio shows, documentaries and TV news, it is difficult to track down most of these masterpieces composed by some of the greatest composers of those years. Anonymity is one of the distinctive traits of this music genre, being in most cases difficult, if not impossible, to find out where these tracks had been used. The liner notes of these works often spark the reader’s curiosity: the notes are in fact detailed descriptions of the instruments used and the atmospheres the music aimed to reproduce. Fonit’s “B 85”, part of the legendary Serie Usignolo, which bears the signatures of the mysterious Coscia (perhaps a moniker of accordionist Gianni?) and Formini, makes no difference in that sense. It is absolutely brilliant to read how these tracks are highly recommended to accompany ‘viewings of vast parks, footage of agriculture, ads, moving crowds and congested traffic jams, American working-class districts’ with hilarious titles such as “Dayda”, “Schizzo”, “Palmas”, “Murlak” (which casts an incredible fuzz guitar), “Bronx” and “Ciresa Facaud” (the latter a probable homage to Piedmont’s dialect that potentially translates in “Cherry, it’s hot!”). The music can be labelled as ‘orchestral pop’, to use terms that made Italian Library music worldwide famous. No hints of ‘country’ as the title seemed to suggest…

File Under: Italian, Library

davachi

Sarah Davachi: All My Circles Run (Students of Decay) LP
All My Circles Run is the third full-length release by Montreal-based electro-acoustic composer Sarah Davachi and her second outing for Students of Decay. In a move which may surprise followers of her previous output, the five compositions on this record eschew synthesizer entirely, each focusing on a different instrument, including strings, voice, organ and piano. What remains consistent, however, is her striking attention to detail and a commitment to tonal possibilities that characterize all of her work. The sinewy “For Strings” opens the album, with keening overtones stretching out in all directions to form a massive, slow-moving, radiant sound. “For Voice” charts an even more celestial course, as wordless vocals ebb and flow to awe-inspiring effect. The stunning, melancholic “For Piano” closes the record and is a high watermark in Davachi’s oeuvre, with plaintive piano figures nestled atop a shimmering string drone to create a rich, reverent atmosphere. All My Circles Run is a step forward from an exciting artist whose compositional and aesthetic tendencies steer her steadfastly toward both the subjunctive and the sublime.

 File Under: Ambient, Drone, Classical
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deep

The Deep: Psychedelic Moods of The Deep (Lion) LP
Expanded deluxe edition of The Deep’s one and only album, originally released in 1966 and now well-established as a psychedelic classic. One night in a darkened Philadelphia studio, the Deep (Rusty Evans, songwriting partner and producer Mark Barkan, the legendary David Bromberg, whose credits include playing with Bob Dylan and many others, plus a bevy of talented musicians) laid down tempestuous garage punkers, sweetly-twisted ballads and ambiguous weirdness, all rife with hyper-psychedelic lyrical flashes of a rolling midnight expressway through the subconscious mind. A perfect representation of the psychedelic sound: free-form poetry, infectious drum beats, fuzzed out guitar, and playfully plucked bass (and vibes and tympani and so on), swirl together, coalescing into some of the most impressive psychedelic rock you’ll hear. Cuts like ‘Your Choice To Choose,’ sound very Seeds-like or proto-Velvet Underground, Lou Reed snarl and all; others like ‘Shadows On The Wall’ and ‘Wake Up and Find Me’ are haunting acid ballads: the whole point of the album was to thoroughly explore the hallucinatory agony and ecstasy of a 12-hour Technicolor dream… although the end result is more amphetamine edgy than acid-soaked trippy. The Deep “Psychedelic Moods” pre-dates its closest kindred sprit in sound and energy (albeit not subject matter): “The Velvet Underground and Nico” came along five months later, and the world of music shifted on its axis—but too late for the Deep. This 3xLP release of “Psychedelic Moods” is taken from the original four-track master tapes. In addition to the superlative master takes, there are three sides of out-takes and alternates from the Deep original four-track session tapes. This set also marks the vinyl debut of all known recordings by Inner Sanctum (aka Hydro Pyro), another LSD trip project produced by Mark Barkan in 1966. Tip-on gatefold art has liner notes detailing the mysterious rise and fall of this New York City band. Made with full co-operation of original Deep producers, Mark Barkan and Rusty Evans. A definitive example of the psychedelic sound.

File Under: Psych, Garage
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b82

Fabio Fabor: B81/B82 – Ballabili Anni 70 (Schema) LP
Fabio Fabor is a mysterious composer and musician who wrote mostly operas, symphonies and chamber music,but also experimental and electronic library music, the latter being the case of this release: short tracks aiming to accompany radio and TV shows, orchestral Pop à la Bacharach, space age pop, hints of bossa and beat from the previous decade. Originally published by the legendary Seri e Usignolo, a sub-label of Fonit, this hard-to-find title is finally available again thanks to Schema Records. Due to an overwhelming number of reissues and to the steady and meticulous work of collectors and passionate music lovers who have been spreading the word about it, the realm of Italian library music has moved from being some kind of hidden cult to becoming a well defined niche. Authors such as Alessandroni, Umiliani, Sciascia, Tommasi and Sorgini have become more accessible to the uninitiated, while prices of the original presses of their records keep surging. Among the multitude of composers that wrote library music in their careers, Fabio Fabor is still surrounded by an aura of mystery. Born in Milan in 1920, Fabio Borgazzi (this was his real name) was a composer and musician who wrote mostly operas, symphonies and chamber music. Lingering between his love for the classic canon and pop and electronic experimentalisms, Fabor developed a parallel career as author of Italian pop music (his songs had been interpreted by popular singers as Fred Buscaglione, Nilla Pizzi e Nicola Arigliano at the renowned Festival di Sanremo) and – more interestingly for us – as a composer of experimental and electronic library music. Among the numerous releases he left, “B 81” and “B 82”, Ballabili “Anni 70” (Underground) are worth remembering: both published by the legendary Serie Usignolo, a sub-label of Fonit, these titles are available again now thanks to Schema Records. “B 81” and “B 82”, both released in 1970, are library music in its most traditional meaning: short tracks aiming to accompany radio and TV shows, orchestral Pop à la Bacharach, space age pop, hints of bossa and beat from the previous decade. If we take for good the description of “Paradiso Hippy”, one of the tracks on the record, the release is a ‘moderato pop, melodic, effectively nostalgic but vibrant’. Enjoy!

File Under: Italian, Library
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Precision 12" Elongated Spine

Funkadelic: Live – Meadowbrook, Rochester, Michigan – 12th September 1971 (Tidal Waves) LP
Contained here is a unique snapshot of Funkadelic’s live performance at the height of their powers. Recorded live at Meadowbrook, Rochester, Michigan on the 12th of September 1971, this is the only official in-concert recording from their early career. The crystal clear recordings here (taken from the soundboard master tapes) provide you with an overdose of free-floating psychedelic black rock and spaced-out jams that can only be described as ‘Jimi Hendrix, James Brown & Sun Ra making a love-child live on stage’. This release also includes extensive & exhaustive liner notes from the Grammy-award winning professor of ethnomusicology ‘Rob Bowman’ who goes over each track in detail and also wrote down quotes from Bernie Worrell & Billy Bass. Featuring an all-star line up that includes George Clinton, Fuzzy Haskins, Calvin Simon, Grady Thomas, Ray Davis, Tyrone Lampkin, Eddie Hazel, Billy Bass Nelson, Bernie Worrell & former Isaac Hayes sideman Harold Beane.

File Under: Funk, Psych
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Precision 12" Elongated Spine

Funkadelic: Finest (Tidal Waves) LP
Compilations are tricky and hard to get right … Finest is that rare one that knocks it out of the park. This release focuses on George Clinton and crew at the height of their career & on their most renowned work. Comprised out of sixteen carefully selected tracks and covering a six-year period (1970-1976)Finest may be the best-assembled Funkadelic collection from this period yet, as both renowned band standards share space with several oft-overlooked tracks. The early tracks “I Got a Thing” and “I Wanna Know if It’s Good to You” show the band members still honing their rich ‘n’ funky sound, before they hit their stride with selections from the classic ‘Maggot Brain’ album. As a result, you get a healthy sampling of some of the best funk the ’70s had to offer, including “Hit It and Quit It,” “You and Your Folks, Me and My Folks,” “Loose Booty,” “Cosmic Slop,” “Red Hot Mama,” and “Get Off Your Ass and Jam.” Finest is an exceptional sampler for those discovering the wild and wacky universe of Funkadelic. Out of print since 1997 and transferred from the original analogue master tapes, now finally back available as a deluxe Double-LP set with some of the craziest psychedelic crumb-style artwork you’ll ever see.

File Under: Funk, Psych
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copeland

Beverly Glenn-Copeland: Keyboard Fantasies (Invisible City) LP
Beverly Glenn-Copeland is already known amongst collectors and music heads for two sought-after albums of folky jazz in the key of Joni. But it was this album, originally self-released on cassette in 1986 that really caught our attention. The album, entirely recorded on DX-7 and TR-707, lies somewhere between digital new-age and (accidentally) early Detroit techno experiments. The inimitable style of BGC here is both peaceful and meditative while simultaneously rhythmic and bass heavy. The album was recorded in the northern Canadian town of Huntsville where BGC was living at the time and is a beautiful fusion of personal vision, technology and place.

File Under: Psych, New Age, Electronic
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harrison

George Harrison: All Things Must Pass (Apple) 3LP
While it’s generally accepted that George Harrison bloomed late as a Beatles songwriter, there’s no denying it was worth the wait. The release of yearning masterpiece All Things Must Pass, in 1970, was like unstopping a bottle. An ambitious triple-album, it includes such unimpeachable classics as “My Sweet Lord,” “Wah-Wah,” and its contemplative title track. It also set the template for the nine studio albums that would follow. Co-produced with Phil Spector, the landmark All Things Must Pass topped the charts around the world and George became the first Beatle to have a solo No. 1 single in both the UK and America with “My Sweet Lord,” which also introduced his signature slide guitar playing. Harrison co-wrote the album’s opening track, “I’d Have You Anytime” with his friend Bob Dylan, who also penned “If Not For You.” The album also boasts a broad spectrum of all-star guests including Eric Clapton, Ringo Starr, Billy Preston, Pete Drake, Gary Wright, Klaus Voormann, John Barham and members of Badfinger and the Delaney and Bonnie band. “It is both an intensely personal statement and a grandiose gesture, a triumph over artistic modesty, even frustration. In this extravaganza of piety and sacrifice and joy the music itself is no longer the only message.” – Ben Gerson, Rolling Stone

File Under: Pop, Beatles
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hayward-masin

Charles Hayward/Gigi Masin: Les Nouvelles Musiques De Chambre Volume 2 (Modern Classics) LP
Following the reissue of the entire recorded output of South London-based experimental act This Heat and its successor, Camberwell Now, Modern Classics Recordings holds the lens up to a special split album created by one of the driving forces behind those groups – drummer Charles Hayward – in collaboration with Italian musician Gigi Masin, whose looping, rhythmic, electronic compositions have seen his cult following grow in his four decades as a recording artist. Originally released on Belgium’s Sub Rosa label in 1989, Les Nouvelles Musiques De Chambre Volume 2 is a split LP on which Masin’s eight tracks occupy side A and Charles Hayward’s long-form piece (at 21 minutes long), “Thames Water Authority”, occupies side B. Geography may have separated the two artists, who each recorded their pieces in isolation from the other, but there’s a commonality to their approach. Previously, Masin had released the inspired 1986 album Wind, while Hayward’s music had long been influenced by the landscape and society of London and the UK. For this album, the label challenged the two musicians to write about the waterways of their respective cities, Venice and London. For Masin, that meant describing the human interactions related to the Italian city’s famous landmarks. “Places, faces, memories… that’s what most of the people love to find when they travel to Venice – some kind of magic that’s deep in the city,” he writes in the new liner notes accompanying this new re-release. For Hayward, it meant describing the physicality of water, the “densities and energies” as he puts it, and the politics of it too. Writes Hayward: “Water was being privatized at the time, the profit margin had been factored in, cost-cutting was implicit, people were being poisoned. Water was a political thing; it still is.” Dive in.

File Under: Ambient, Drone, Experimental, This Heat
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high-plains

High Plains: Cinderland (Kranky) LP
High Plains is the duo of Scott Morgan and Mark Bridges. Morgan, based in the Canadian Pacific Northwest, is predominantly known for his drifting, textured soundscapes released under the pseudonym Loscil. Bridges is an accomplished, classically-trained cellist residing in Madison, Wisconsin. The two met in Banff, Alberta, while they were there on residencies at the Banff Centre for the Arts in 2014. In early 2016, the duo embarked on a collaborative set of compositions in the oxygen thin air of Wyoming, spending two weeks holed up in a refurbished school house in the town of Saratoga, where this album was recorded. Inspired by Schubert’s Die Winterreise and the rolling landscapes of their surroundings, the recordings evoke a shadowy, introspective and dizzying winter journey. Cinderland takes cues from classical, electronic and cinematic musical traditions but is mostly a product of the rugged, mythic landscape: vast and sprawling with a wild, uncertain edge. The recording was made with a portable studio and all sounds were sourced on site, most notably from Bridges’ cello, the resident Steinway D piano, and field recordings collected from the local soundscape. The results are a site-specific, wide-scope view of the high valley terrain — a mix of analog and digital, neoclassical and modern electronic sounds, a complementary series of tracks to become absorbed in, a truly deep listening experience.

File Under: Electronic, Classical, Ambient, Loscil
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first-narrows

Loscil: First Narrow (Kranky) LP
This is the first vinyl issue of the classic Loscil album originally released in May of 2004. First Narrows is the third Loscil album and the first where Scott Morgan uses real instruments and input from other musicians. Sound sources ranged from sampled instruments to miscellaneous lo-fi mini-cassette recordings with Morgan generating music on computer by custom programming sequencing and processing designed so that no two performances of the patches would be exactly the same. In turn, Jason Zumpano on fender rhodes piano, Tim Loewen on guitar and Nyla Rany on cello improvise over the electronic sequences. Morgan then edited and mixed the live and premixed sections together. Contains a bonus track not on original CD.

File Under: Ambient, Electronic
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lusine

Lusine: Sensorimotor (Ghostly) LP
From his early releases as Lusine onward, Jeff McIlwain’s electronic explorations make up one of the more diverse discographies of the past decade and a half. Effortlessly blurring the lines between techno, electro-pop and experimental composition, the Texas-raised/Seattle-based producer’s arrangements are meticulously constructed, but also filled with emotion and soul. With an introspective turn that’s hinted at in the record title, Lusine’s fourth album for Ghostly sees McIlwain diffusing the pop-leanings of 2013’s The Waiting Room with opaque, brush-stroked melodies washing over these new buoyant productions. Sensorimotor is a visceral album, with gorgeous opener “Canop”” slowly building into an empyrean cloud of music box chimes and an amorphous thrum. The following “Ticking Hands” is just as beguiling yet also more formed, with the processed melancholy vocals of McIlwain and his wife Sarah filtered into a chilling lament that unfolds over the song’s light skitters and Kraftwerkian pulse. Sensorimotor finds other past Lusine collaborators returning as well: Benoit Pioulard’s narcotic croon loops into a swirling arpeggio during “Witness,” and Vilja Larjosto’s sun-kissed vocal melodies are spliced and splayed across the steady pulsing bass and fluorescent synth pads of “Just a Cloud,” and later on “Won’t Forget.”

File Under: Electronic, Ambient
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canterel

Martial Canterel: Navigations Volume I-III (Medical) 3LP
Medical Records proudly presents a special limited edition of all 3 “Forgotten Tracks, Sketches and Unfinished Work 2002-2004” by Martial Canterel as a triple gatefold set. Volume I was released previously in 2013, and Volume II and III are simultaneously being released by Medical Records as standalones. Sean McBride has been producing work under the Martial Canterel moniker dating back to 2002 as well as working as half of Xeno And Oaklander. These tracks capture the allure and depth of Sean’s early work exploring rhythms and perfectly crafted pop songs using a very early incarnation of limited instrumentation. Fans of Martial Canterel’s early work (think “Austerton” and “Sister Age”) will be instantly elated. This is the first time these tracks have been released on vinyl and have been remastered for this release by Martin Bowes at the Cage, UK.

File Under: Electronic, Minimal, Synthwave
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hayes

Hayes McMullan: Everyday Seems Like Murder Here (Light in the Attic) LP
Bluesman. Sharecropper. Church deacon. Civil Rights activist. Hayes McMullan should be a name on every Blues aficionados’ short-list and thanks to the preservation fieldwork carried out by one of the genre’s greatest researchers some 50 years ago – it might soon be. Born in 1902, Hayes McMullan was discovered by the renowned American roots scholar, collector and documentarian Gayle Dean Wardlow. Wardlow, author of the seminal blues anthology Chasin’ That Devil Music – Searching for the Blues, may be most famous for uncovering Robert Johnson’s death certificate in 1968, finally revealing clues to the bluesman’s mysterious and much disputed demise. Moreover, in his tireless and committed mission to preserve the Blues for future generations, he captured McMullan’s raw talent on tape and on paper. Wardlow recorded these sessions, transcribed the songs and now, writes the sleeve-notes for this landmark release. Wardlow and McMullan met by chance on one of the former’s record-hunting trips, in Tallahatchie County, Mississippi, in 1967. Having introduced himself to McMullan on a hunch, it turned out this unassuming elderly man had not only heard of Wardlow’s idol, Charley Patton, but had played alongside him in the 1920s, as part of a brief musical journey that took him from the plantation to the open roads and juke joints of the Depression-era South. Striking up a friendship that was deemed unorthodox in 1960’s Mississippi, Wardlow traveled to McMullan’s sharecropper’s shack and convinced him to play guitar for the first time since he quit the Blues for the Church in the 30’s. “Hayes was playing like no one I had ever heard,” Wardlow writes with amazement. Wardlow visited McMullan on a handful of occasions, always taking his recorder, a guitar and some whiskey with him. It was during these visits that Wardlow captured – with surprising clarity – the songs that make up Everyday Seem Like Murder Here. Hayes McMullan passed away at the age of 84 in 1986, his talent and legacy largely unknown. “Reflecting now on our brief time together, I marvel at the small glimpse of something much larger I was lucky to have captured,” writes Wardlow. “The few old snapshots I took, the handful of tunes we recorded, and his brilliant performance of “Hurry Sundown” captured on film are all that’s left of the musical legacy of Hayes McMullan, sharecropper, deacon, and—unbeknownst to so many for so long—reluctant bluesman.”

File Under: Blues
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meat

Meatbodies: Alice (In The Red) LP
With Alice, MEATBODIES return ascending toward ground level. A “heavy-pop” concept, metal on molly. Chad Ubovich, Patrick Nolan, and Kevin Boog step out in new form, soaring through diverse stories, tones, and characters. Dancing between quiet and loud, funk and doom, pop and noise. Their message preached is celestial and deafening, a sacred scripture for today’s world: a warbling rhodes piano, a liquifying electric guitar, a ghostly synthesizer skating across the sands of a twelve-stringed acoustic. The band digs deep into the rich soils of Earth to reveal the chaotic sensual vibrations underneath the fields we walk upon. Connecting our limbs, our mouths, our consciousness to the microcosms of the grime, all while being lit by black light. Captured wriggling and alive in San Francisco by Ubovich and Eric Bauer at The Bauer Mansion, this album is a step in the right direction, a new direction, a new way of thinking. Watching the futures, watching the world burn. Vinyl includes digital download.

File Under: Garage, Psych, Hard Rock
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melvins

Melvins: King Buzzo (Boner) LP
Melvins: Dale Crover (Boner) LP
Melvins: Joe Preston (Boner) LP
In 1992 the Melvins’ fascination / adoration / denigration of the mighty Kiss rock and roll universe compelled them to excrete out three solo masterworks inspired by the Kiss solo LPs. The first in the series is King Buzzo, from the Melvins’ giggling guitar grumpus. Four songs of atmospheric clanging and rockin’ banging. Also features the many talents, drumming and otherwise, of a famous Grunge superstar, whose name sort of rhymes with New Wave Asshole. The second in the series is Dale Crover, from the Melvins’ sleepy drum caveman. Four songs of gloomy heaviness, with Dale doin’ the drummin’, singin’, guitarin’, and dancin’. The third in the series is Joe Preston, from the Melvins’ electronic beard warlord. Three songs of fuzz bass computer drone temper tantrum. All three 12-inches reissued on vinyl after 100,000 years out of print. Each with a magical digital download included.

File Under: Metal, Stoner
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minusbear

Minus the Bear: Voids (Suicide Squeeze) LP
On their sixth album Voids, Minus the Bear started with a blank slate, and inadvertently found themselves applying the same starting-from-scratch strategies that fueled their initial creative process. Album opener “Last Kiss” immediately establishes the band’s renewed fervor. An appropriately dizzying guitar line plunges into a propulsive groove before the chorus unfolds into a multi-tiered pop chorus. From there the album flows into “Give & Take,” a tightly wound exercise in syncopation that recalls the celebratory pulse of early Bear classics like “Fine + 2 Pts” while exploring new textures and timbres. “Invisible” is arguably the catchiest song of the band’s career, with Jake Snider’s vocal melodies and Dave Knudson’s imaginative guitar work battling for the strongest hooks. “What About the Boat?” reminds us of the “math-rock” tag that followed the band in their early years, with understated instrumentation disguising an odd-time beat. “Erase,” recalls the merging of forlorn indie pop and electronica that the band dabbled with on their early EPs, but demonstrates the Bear’s ongoing melodic sophistication and tonal exploration. By the time the band reaches album closer “Lighthouse,” they’ve traversed so much sonic territory that the only appropriate tactic left at their disposal is a climactic crescendo, driven at its peak by Cory Murchy’s thunderous bass. Not since Planet of Ice’s “Lotus” has the Bear achieved such an epic finale. All in all, it’s an album that reminds us of everything that made us fall in love with Minus the Bear in the first place, and a big part of that appeal is the sense that the band is heading into uncharted territories. First pressing on 180g vinyl with die-cut jacket. Mastered by Greg Calbi at Sterling Sound.

File Under: Indie Rock
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monopol

Monopol: Weltweit (Medical) LP
Medical Records collaborates with their good friends Anna Logue across the pond in Germany to present the long out of print Neu Deutsche Welle cult classic album Weltweit by Monopol. Released in 1982, Weltweit was the sole output of the band. It has appropriately become quite rare and difficult to find with the resulting high prices to obtain an original copy. Inspired by the greats such as Kraftwerk, YMO and Klaus Schulze, the three members crafted an exquisite collection of pop songs played on a very impressive collection of analog synthesizers, self-builds and drum machines that were considered cutting edge at the time. The band would have recorded a second album but split up before that was possible. Members of the band continued to be involved in the music industry at least peripherally but didn’t participate in further collaborations or bands. Also interestingly, Monopol was basically a studio-only project and actually never played live (despite some TV appearances). The album has been remastered by Martin Bowes at the Cage, UK.

File Under: Electronic, Synth Pop
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firewalk

OST: Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me (Death Waltz) LP
Fire Walk With Me is an altogether more brooding affair than the Twin Peaks series soundtrack. Badalamenti won a grammy for the title track of this LP and it’s not hard to see why- it’s dangerous, and bursting with smokey jazz thanks to Jimmy Scott. We went back to the master tapes in the Warner Archives and had this recut to fit across two LPs as the score clocks in at 51 minutes. It sounds incredible and punchy, but super nuanced too.

File Under: OST, Jazz
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peltier

Tommy Peltier feat. Judee Sill: Chariot of Astral Light (Mapache) LP
Tommy Peltier was born in New Orleans and came out to Los Angeles with his mom on his 13th birthday. A decade later he was a regular playing cornet with his group the Jazz Corps at the famous jazz club, The Lighthouse. In 1966 the Jazz Corps cut an album for Pacific Jazz and featured the fantastic Roland Kirk. In 1970, due to an injury, Peltier could no longer play the horn and looked for other means for expression. Not one to be undone, he took a few chords that he had learned from friends like Jude Sill – who became occasional collaborator, sometime lover, and lifelong friend – and set out as a singer-songwriter. None of that music saw the light until It was collected together as Chariot of Astral Light. They worked together on a lot of Peltier’s material, and Judee pops up on half of the disc handling backing vocals, guitar and organ lines. He had a house in Echo Park where he held weekly Saturday recording sessions in his front room that a number of peripheral scenesters would attend (Lynn Blessing, Wolfgang Melz, Dave Parlato, and Barry McManus – all of whom appear here). Aside from the few takes done at actual studios, the bulk of the stuff was recorded in that tiny room.

File Under: Folk
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pow

Pow!: Crack an Egg (Castleface) LP
POW! continue their danse macabre in the laser glow of hi-beam synthesizers, with a new batch of synth-punk candy that will rot your teeth: Crack An Egg. Vacuum-sealed, chrome gleaming, propulsion pounding, eyebrows arched and slightly pixelated, this album is like the cupie-doll face beckoning from a digital billboard outside your hovercraft window. From a none-too-distant dystopia and on to your turntable — VCFs slowly open across a smogged-out horizon as they urge you to take that “Necessary Call,” warn moodily against a “Cyberattack,” and inexplicably “Crack An Egg” in honor of the human race. Synthetic earworms squirm into and out of view like twinkling city lights through evening’s opaque air, feasting on terse punk skeletons. The neon is buffed to an aerosol sheen by Chris Woodhouse behind the blinking motherboards, with a streetlight or two of Gary Numan’s slanting through the door. The automatons know where the party’s at — follow them.

File Under: Synth Punk
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power-glove

Power Glove: Trials of the Blood Dragon (Invada) LP
Power Glove’s crushing, synth-heavy soundtrack to the retro-futurist adventure game Trials Of The Blood Dragon, released through Invada in collaboration with Ubisoft. The follow up to their 2013 soundtrack to Farcry 3: Blood Dragon is delivered in true Power Glove fashion, with 31 tracks of ’80s-inspired nostalgia, rippled with vast arpeggios, power synths and the odd patch of proto-house. This soundtrack will appeal to fans of John Carpenter, Lazerhawk, Carpenter Brut and Miami Nights 1984.

File Under: Experimental, Ambient, Drone, Noise
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ricci

Vito Ricci: A Symphony for Amiga (Intellegent Instruments) LP
“Last year’s stunning Music From Memory retrospective introduced a fresh generation of listeners to Vito Ricci’s obscure downtown magic, leaving young and old anaesthetized and invigorated in equal measure. But with no new material hitting the shelves since 1985, further digging proved a fruitless and disappointing endeavor. Good news then that Vito’s been back in the studio to put together another total masterpiece then! Working exclusively on the Commodore Amiga (with its infamous sound chip), Vito composed all the pieces found on this LP in ‘Music Mouse’, Laurie Spiegel’s pioneering software from the mid-80s. Traversing warbling ambient, warming drone, hypnotic minimalism and elements of aleatoric music, ‘Symphony’ sounds a million miles away from the Team17, Bullfrog and Gremlin games of my youth. Adding his own delicate guitar parts and Laurie Anderson styled vocals from Lise Vachon, Ricci successfully fuses the digital and the organic to create and intricate and expansive listening experience completely in tune with his earlier works. It’s time to drift into Vito’s unique sonic world once again.” (Piccadilly Records).

File Under: Ambient, Drone, New Age
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skyway-man

Skyway Man: Seen Comin’ From a Mighty Eye (Yewknee) LP
Seen Comin’ From a Mighty Eye is the follow-up to singer-songwriter-producer James Wallace’s More Strange News From Another Star. It’s a stew of B-movie sci-fi, cosmic boogie and psychedelic American music: an immersive, fully realized song cycle with a cinematic flair. Wallace has travelled a few skyways in his day. He brings this new batch of songs, intertwined by a fascination with UFO religion along for his debut outing as Skyway Man, a name he kept running across again and again. Was it the trickster of mythology, the soul of some long missing astronaut, or an old storyteller from another planet trying to get through? The answer is unclear, but the result is a nice slice of musical imagination. Recorded between Nashville and his hometown of Richmond, VA, the album features the Spacebomb house rhythm section of Pinson Chanselle & Cameron Ralston, who also provided horn arrangements, and Matthew E. White in a slide guitar cameo appearance. Seen Comin’ From a Mighty Eye offers the kind of sounds you would want on the radio for a first or last kiss, the songs playing in the bar scene from some forgotten Spielberg adventure, a soundtrack for the later (not quite latter) days of earth. Music for driving along the skyway, thank god the skyway is made of music anyway.

File Under: Folk Rock
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sleaford-english

Sleaford Mods: English Tapas (Rough Trade) LP
Call them minimalist agit-rock, beat-based political punk, or…don’t, but what you can’t call Sleaford Mods is half-assed. They’re aggressive, abrasive, and unabashed in their lyrical support for England’s working class and in railing against the oligarchs who deny people their basic human and civil rights. Vocalist Jason Wiliamson shouts against austerity-era Britain’s malaise and stagnation with plenty of profanity, but even more cleverness and wit; and while his lyrics specify conditions in his home country, his anger and call-to-arms can unite all of us who witness and work under a system that privileges the wealth of the few over the bare comfort, and even the survival, of the just-as-worthy many. With Andrew Fearn’s deceptively simple beats and melodies underpinning Williamson’s virtuosic vocal performances, this would be a fascinating record, message or no; but the drive, meaning, and compassion behind these catchy, and even dancefloor-ready tunes make this album as vital politically as it is artistically. Sleaford Mods are at their sneering, yowling best with English Tapas. “Undoubtedly, absolutely, definitely the world’s greatest rock ‘n’ roll band.” – Iggy Pop

File Under: Punk, Raps
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t2

T2: T2 (Lion) LP
Featuring the original line-up of Dunton/Cross and Jinks; with blistering lead guitar, mellotrons, flutes, and lengthy heavy/melodic tracks. For fans of classic well crafted UK hard rock and progressive music we think this must rank as one of the most important archival releases in this genre. Even though fame and fortune never came to pass for T2, their Decca album “It’ll All Work out in Boomland” has become an all-time classic amongst collectors of progressive and psychedelic music—and even in the techno and dj scenes. Apart from a BBC radio session, fans long assumed that “Boomland” was both the beginning and the end of the group’s recorded legacy. But some time back, Acme Records unearthed an eponymous second album of material, recorded in 1970 with the original line-up as demo tracks for a planned second album. This second T2 album, had it been released in 1970, could have put the band on the same level of fame with the likes of Deep Purple, Free, and King Crimson (bands with whom T2 shared a stage). It’s hard-driving opener ‘Highway,’ ablaze with wailing guitars, gives way to moody introspection, culminating with the LSD induced finale ‘T2.’ Those of you who were lucky enough to snap up a copy of the earlier limited edition of the Acme Deluxe pressings of this album can testify to the importance of these recordings. For those of you who missed out the first time around—or who have only recently discovered the greatness of the mighty T2—all we can say is, enjoy the power and glory of the second T2 album! “The original line-up of T2 only lasted for one year, and the music we recorded reflected a specific time and place. We are very grateful that so many people all over the world have continued to enjoy the music, and that our albums are still being released 40 years later. Thank you for your support” — Peter Dunton

File Under: Hard Rock, Psych
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thought-forms

Thought Forms: Songs About Drowning (Invada) LP
With their third full length release ‘Songs About Drowning’, Thought Forms kick it up yet another notch, pushing the boat out even further to create a strange, intoxicating album, their most accomplished to date and certainly their most fascinating. A contributing factor of this sea-change was the addition of bassist Jim Barr (Portishead, Get The Blessing), who also produced and recorded the album. Blending refined and colossal noise-scapes with a beautifully hypnotic and seductive style delivered with confidence, ‘Songs About Drowning’ is a richly deserving album which could see the band carrying the proud lineage of off-kilter noise-pop. This release will appeal to fans of My Bloody Valentine, Portishead, Thurston Moore, Beak> and White Hills.

File Under: Noise Pop, Shoegaze
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industria

Piero Umiliani: Gli Italiani e L’Industria (Four Flies) LP
From the legendary Omicron label secret archives, one of the rarest and nearly impossible to find album signed by Piero Umiliani. Gli italiani e l’industria is the soundtrack of a mysterious TV documentary by Romolo Marcellini broadcasted in 1967, and never appeared again from then, which was focused on virtue and vice of Italian post-economic boom industrialization. The music perfectly reflects the contrasts of the Italian society of that period, equally divided by consumerism and alienation, with a number of tracks deliberately easy-jazz and pop-beat on the one hand (with gorgeous ballads for vibraphone, like Natascia or Negozi alla moda, and killer organ tracks, like Music Box, later reused in some movies of the 70s, as Aragosta a colazione), and on the other with a bounce of compositions ultra-jazz, close to free jazz, with electronics and avant-garde solutions that Umiliani will explore completely in the further years (it is not by chance that 3 of those tracks are also included nine years after in a new library Umiliani’s LP named Atmospheres). An essential album of easy-listening and experimental sound, necessary to comprehend the richness of a genius of Italian soundtracks.

File Under: Italian, Library, OST
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wcpa

West Coast Pop Art Experiment Band: Part One (Jackpot) LP
Formed in Los Angeles in 1965, The West Coast Pop Art Experimental Band were considered by many to be the West Coast’s answer to the Velvet Underground. The group created California psych/rock music that was both fragile and dreamy. Part One was originally released in 1967 on Frank Sinatra’s Reprise Records. Though they didn’t achieve the fame or notoriety of other bands from the area, they have nonetheless achieved a cult status among collectors and people curious about a rich, albeit short-lived musical genre known as West- Coast Psychedelia. First time reissued in MONO, from the original master tapes.

File Under: Psych
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wcpa2

West Coast Pop Art Experiment Band: Vol 2 (Jackpot) LP
Released in 1967 on Reprise Records as a follow up to Part One, Vol. 2 takes the band into more ambitious territory. Reaching out to more psychedelic territory than the debut LP, Vol. 2 maintains their unique pop sound mixed with ominous fuzz guitar, jumping from graceful folk-rock to wailing guitar freakouts, to multilayered avant-garde compositions at a moment’s notice. First time reissued in MONO, from the original master tapes.

File Under: Psych
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why

Why?: Moh Lhean (Joyful Noise) LP
The final words sung on the sixth album by Why? are an apt place to begin: “Hold on, what’s going on?” Because while there’s much familiar about the oddly named Moh Lhean – mastermind Yoni Wolf’s sour-sweet croon, his deadpan poet’s drawl and ear for stunningly fluid psych-pop-folk-whatever arrangement – a great deal has changed in the four years that have passed since 2012’s Mumps, Etc., an LP that honed the band’s orchestral precision and self-deprecating swagger to a fine point. It’s significant that this is the first fully home-recorded Why? album since the project’s 2003 debut. Made mostly in Wolf’s studio and co-produced by his brother Josiah, the result is obsessive, of course, but also intimate, and flush with warmth and looseness. While Moh Lhean never stoops to outright optimism, it chronicles our hero finding peace in the unknowing, trading the wry smirk for a holy shrug, and looking past corporeal pain for something more cosmic and, rest assured, equally weird. A low tone opens the album on “This Ole King” as acoustic pluck and upright bass form a Western bedrock beneath Wolf’s fragile voice. But as the song pushes on, the playing gets brighter and the vocal becomes a mantra-like hum inspired by Ali Farka Touré’s blues, before rolling into a second part rich with chiming keys and twisting harmony – Brian Wilson’s kaleidoscopic vision of pop. “The Water” handily morphs a moody folk tune into some strange new form of full-band dub while “One Mississippi” bounces along happily over a flurry of bizarre percussion, whistled melodies, and trippy synthesizer blips. Perhaps most impressive is “Consequence of Nonaction,” which vacillates between a quiet meditation for guitar/voice/clarinet, and wild, sax-strewn astral art-funk. Movement is a key theme of Moh Lhean. It’s a breakup album without a romantic interest – coded within the lyrics is a tale about fleeing the seductions of a wintry figure for something synonymous with spring. “Easy” plays like a ward against the old ghost who haunts “January February March,” while “George Washington” places our host in a tiny watercraft, “paddling for land/hand on heart and heart in hand” as that faceless malevolent force stays ashore. Moh Lhean’s gorgeously psychedelic closer, “The Barely Blur” with Son Lux, puzzles over the nature of existence. But rather than leave us with the macabre chill of death, as many a Why? LP has, the song dissolves into the infinite – the sound of the Big Bang.

File Under: Hip Hop
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cold4

Various: Cold Wave of Color Vol 4 (Lion) LP
Fourth volume of the completely sold out electronic compilation series from the 1980’s color tapes label. As with the other volumes you can find great examples of cold wave, minimal wave and synth electronics made by obscure British bands such as Disintegrators, Mystery Plane, Berserk In A Hayfield and Lives of Angels—all recorded between 1980-1985, vestiges of the 1980’s UK cassette underground scene. Comes with poster insert and reproduction of issue 3 of Color Tapes’ own in house “Purple Twilight” fanzine from 1985 that features articles on Insane Music, Space Brothers and Lives Of Angels. “Great stuff. A worthy companion of the “Cold Waves : Minimal Electronics” and “Mutazione” CDs. Anyone who is a fan of Cabaret Voltaire/Human League/Throbbing Gristle/Robert Rental/Chris & Cosey/Coil era electronics will find something they love on this.” ★★★★★ Amazon review “This retrospective is well overdue. As you might expect, much of the material sounds like a cross between early Depeche Mode, curious Italian coldwave and proto-EBM. Pleasingly all the material has been remastered by legendary engineer Denis Blackham, giving the original analogue sounds a whole new lease of life. Essential stuff” -Juno review “A must have collection of English post-punk rarities sourced from the legendary Color Tapes label” – Boomkat Review

File Under: Electronic, Coldwave

ghana

Various: Ghana Soundz (Soundway) LP
Ghana Soundz was the first ever Soundway compilation and became recognised worldwide due to the licensing of the Oscar Sulley track, ‘Bukom Mashie’ to the soundtrack of Hollywood blockbuster, ‘Last King of Scotland’. Pounding rhythms, blaring horns and pumping vocals – the music is a document of a time forgotten when flares and Cuban heels strutted the streets and night-spots of Accra, the sizzlingly hot and humid capital of Ghana.  Influenced as much by traditional rhythms and local highlife as by the music of Fela Kuti, James Brown and Santana, these tunes had almost become extinct – until now! Ghana Soundz was the first of three collections of rare afro-beat, afro-funk and afro-fusion that Miles Cleret painstakingly travelled the length and breadth of Ghana to assemble, the third compilation to be released late 2009.

File Under: World, Afrobeat, Funk

hell3

Various: Hillbillies in Hell Vol. 3 (Iron Mountain) LP
Down, down…deeper into the infernal depths. More unknown and unheralded Hillbillies and Delinquent Hayseed Balladeers. They croon. They yodel. And the flames leap ever higher. Cut on microscopic or private-press labels and distributed in minuscule amounts, these Tormented Troubadours sing of Satan, His diabolical offspring, the Grim Reaper, sinful trysts, suicide, murder, Devil trains, inebriates, cuckolds and lustful cadavers – all in one handy LP package. Years in the making – ‘Hillbillies In Hell’ (Volume Three) presents a further 16 timeless testaments of sin, tribulation, cold graves and warm temptations. Originally issued on forgotten 45s, some of these sides are indescribably rare and are reissued here for the very first time. All for your licentious listening pleasure.

File Under: Country

…..Restocks…..

Arctic Monkeys: AM (Domino) LP
Arctic Monkeys: Bumbug (Domino) LP
Baird Sisters: Until you Find Your Green (Ba Da Bing) LP
Bing & Ruth: City Lake (RVNG) LP
Blonde Redhead: Misery is a Butterfly (4AD) LP
Blonde Redhead: 23 (4AD) LP
Dan Brown: Atrocity Exhibition (Warp) LP
Butthole Surfers: Brown Reason to Live (Alt. Tentacles) LP
Butthole Surfers: Locust Abortion Technician (Latino Bugger Ville) LP
Julie Byrne: No Even Happiness (Ba Da Bing) LP
Camberwell Now: The Ghost Trade (Modern Classics) LP
John Carpenter: Lost Themes (Sacred Bones) LP
Cat Power: Covers Record (Matador) LP
Cat Power: The Greatest (Matador) LP
Cat Power: You Are Free (Matador) LP
Childish Gambino: Camp (Glassnote) LP
Daft Punk: 2007: Alive (EMI) LP
Daft Punk: Discovery (EMI) LP
Daft Punk: Tron: Legacy (EMI) LP
Emperor: Anthems to the Welki (Spinefarm) LP
Emperor: In the Nightside… (Spinefarm) LP
Flesh Eaters: Forever Came Today (Superior Viaduct) LP
Gonjasufi: A Sufi & A Killer (Warp) LP
Dexter Gordon: Our Man In Paris (Blue Note) LP
Grimes: Geidi Primes (Arbutus) LP
Grimes: Visions (Arbutus) LP
Herbie Hancock: Maiden Voyage (Blue Note) LP
Isis: Wavering Radiant (Robotic Empire) LP
Bert Jansch: s/t (Superior Viaduct) LP
David Kauffman & Eric Caboor: Songs From Suicide Bridge (Modern Classics) LP
Kaytranada: 99.9% (XL) LP
Philip Lewin: Am I Really Here All Alone? (Thompkins Square) LP
Bob Marley: Legend (Universal) LP
Metallica: And Justice For All (Blackened) LP
Metallica: Hardwired to Self-Destruct (Blackened) LP
Metallica: Kill Em All (Blackened) LP
Metallica: Master of Puppets (Blackened) LP
Metallica: s/t (Blackened) LP
Misfits: Walk Among Us (Rhino) LP
Mission of Burma: Calls, Signals & Marches (Matador) LP
Lee Morgan: Sidewinder (Blue Note) LP
Nirvana: Bleach (Sub Pop) LP
Nirvana: Unplugged (Geffen) LP
William Onyeabor: Who is…? (Luaka Bop) LP
Parliament: Mothership Connection (Universal) LP
Pavement: Crooked Rain, Crooked Rain (Matador) LP
Pavement: Brighten The Corners (Matador) LP
Preoccupations: s/t (Flemish Eye) LP
Rodriguez: Cold Fact (Light in the Attic) LP
Rolling Stones: Sticky Fingers (Universal) LP
Ty Segall: s/t (Drag City) LP
Six Organs of Admittance: Burning The Threshold (Drag City) LP
Sufjan Stevens: Illinois (Asthmatic Kitty) LP
Sufjan Stevens: Michigan (Asthmatic Kitty) LP
Suicide: s/t (Superior Viaduct) LP
Suicide: Alan Vega Martin Rev (Superior Viaduct) LP
Survive: MF064 (Monofonus) LP
Kamasi Washington: The Epic (Brainfeeder) 3LP
Yo La Tengo: I Can Hear The Heart Beating As One (Matador) LP

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