Well, not a LOT of new stuff in this week, but that’s obviously due to the fact next Saturday is RECORD STORE DAY! Still some great slabs in and moving fast, the new Blood Incantation is the least metal, and most metal thing all at the same time. The new comp on Forager is great. The new PUP finally showed up. As usual, there’s some new Blue Note reissues.
This weekend we are only open 12 – 5 on Friday. 11 – 5 on Saturday and closed Sunday.
OH ALSO, we are now open on Saturday until 5pm. This will be permanent going forward.
And as for Record Store Day… we’ve started posting the exclusive releases we’ve received on our RSD page on the website. You can take a look there to keep up with what’s come in already. We’ll be opening up early that day… we’re thinking 9am, just to get the line moving as quickly as possible. We’ll also be having a sale that day. While not required, due to the high number of people we expect to see that day we will be limiting the number of people in the store at any given time, and we would appreciate masks.
And while there are no longer any health restrictions we are currently operating….
– in-store shopping/pick ups – 11 – 6 pm Monday – Friday, 11 am – 5 pm Saturday (if you don’t want to come into the store for a pick up, call and/or use the back door) – We will be wearing masks, if you want to, great! If not, that’s also fine, but please be respectful of other people’s space and decisions. – Sanitize your hands (we’ll have some)
…..picks of the week…..
Blood Incantation: Timewave Zero (Century Media) LP Spawned in the Fall of 2011, Cosmic Death Metal initiates BLOOD INCANTATION, spent the past decade establishing a reputation for creating powerful Athmospheric Death Metal with progressive elements, while gradually incorporating more Psychedelic & Ambient components with each new release. The inevitable zenith of these increasingly exploratory excursions was finally reached during the summer of 2021 and captured once again on analog tape at World Famous Studios in Denver, Colorado. Epitomizing their Cosmic essence and Experimental nature, this new recording reveals an alternate dimension for experiencing the mind-bending songwriting of BLOOD INCANTATION´s dense otherworldly sonic landscapes: Beyond the limitations of genre and free to travel among the stars. Echoes of TANGERINE DREAM, PINK FLOYD, LUSTMORD, POPOL VUH & DEAD CAN DANCE synthesize in an archaic planetarium soundtrack, taking the listener on a cinematic journey through the Stargate, into the vast darkness of Outer Space, and beyond the infinite transcendental luminosity of the Mind´s Eye.
FIle Under: Ambient, Synth, Metal, Kris’s Picks Buy Here
Various: Sky Dust Drifter (Forager) LP An anthology born out of isolation and deep introspection, Sky Dust Drifter is a cosmic medley of sun-soaked AOR, psychedelic folk, and soft rock. This soundtrack was driven by the lonesome cowboy, a lockdown savior leaving me adrift in desert winds and dimly lit country bars. Long-distance trades and masked meetups yielded a collection of private press LPs and 45s from ten different artists spanning 1973 to 1980. This seemingly random stack of records revealed songs living entangled in themes of hard luck, heartache, and the inevitable loneliness of existence. Adorned in cracked leather and chrome, this album is an aimless wander from the soil to the stars. Featuring an unreleased English version of the compilation’s title track “Sky Dust Drifter,” (originally released only in Hebrew), the record shifts from laconic afterthoughts to bold proclamations. From Michael Andrews’ blue-eyed soul assertion “Something Bad’s Better Than Nothin’,” to the searing electric guitars and bold synths of Sunburst’s “Special Lady,” Sky Dust Drifter thrives on solitude in a universe of unconditional self-rule where loneliness is not darkness but rather a blazing light of autonomy. Original artwork by Arina Kokoreva
File Under: Psych, Folk, Soft Rock, Kris’s Picks Buy Here
Alabama Shakes: Boys & Girls (ATO) LP 2012 debut album from the Athens, Alabama-based outfit. The band was originally formed when lead singer/guitarist Brittany Howard approached bassist Zac Cockrell during a high school psychology class and began meeting after school to write songs. Howard and Cockrell experimented with many different styles of music including roots rock, progressive rock, soul music, country music and classic rock.
Bedhead: s/t (Numero) LP Sophomore effort from the Wichita, Texas, slowcore masters. Originally issued in 1996 on King Coffey’s Trance Syndicate label, Beheaded is a dark and brooding affair. The braided, triple guitar attack of brothers Matt and Bubba Kadane and Tench Coxe is more reflective than bracing, each note simultaneously sustaining and building. The rhythm section of drummer Trini Martinez and bassist Kris Wheat breath effortlessly along, anxious only for more space.
Bedhead: WhatFunLifeWas (Numero) LP Their shambolic 1994 debut, remastered from the original tapes and presented in lavish, gatefold form. A mix of restrained loud and purposeful quiet, WhatFunLifeWas’s eleven tracks unfold at a marathon runner’s pace, picking up speed when necessary, but its eye on completing a personal race. Singer Matt Kadane’s soft, semi-drawl is buried in the mix, letting brother Bubba and Tench Coxe’s guitars weave cleanly around drummer Trini Martinez’s all-ride-all-the-time timekeeping.
Jackie McLean: Tippin’ The Scales (Blue Note) LP Jackie McLean’s 1960s Blue Note output is a fascinating body of work, especially viewed with the benefit of hindsight. In between recording 2 venturous modernist sessions – Let Freedom Ring and One Step Beyond – that would set the tone for the alto saxophonist’s future explorations, came the seemingly more conventional and relaxed quartet date Tippin’ The Scales. Recorded in September 1962 but not released until 1979, the date featured McLean with Sonny Clark on piano, Butch Warren on bass, and Art Taylor on drums delivering a swinging hard bop set that presented 2 originals by McLean (“Tippin’ the Scales” and “Rainy Blues”) along with 3 by Clark (“Nursery Blues,” “Nicely,” and “Two For One”), as well as a tender version of Vernon Duke’s “Cabin in the Sky.” Blue Note Records’ acclaimed Tone Poet Audiophile Vinyl Reissue Series continues in 2022. Launched in 2019 in honor of the label’s 80th Anniversary, the Tone Poet series is produced by Joe Harley (from Music Matters) and features all-analog, 180g audiophile vinyl reissues that are mastered from the original master tapes by Kevin Gray of Cohearent Audio. Tone Poet vinyl is manufactured at RTI in Camarillo, CA, and packaged in deluxe Stoughton Printing “Old Style” gatefold Tip-On jackets. The titles were once again handpicked by Harley and cover the crème de la crème of the Blue Note catalog along with underrated classics, modern era standouts, and albums from other labels under the Blue Note umbrella including Pacific Jazz and United Artists Records. Every aspect of these Blue Note/Tone Poet releases is done to the highest-possible standard. It means that you will never find a superior version.
Ponderosa Twins Plus One: 2+2+1= (Numero) LP An American soul vocal group that would go on to shape the sound of pop music much farther beyond their imaginations, The Ponderosa Twins Plus One featured two sets of identical teenage twins, Alfred and Alvin Pelham, and Keith and Kirk Gardner, along with Ricky Spicer. The group released a couple of singles and a lone album for Cleveland’s Saru label in 1971, breaking up and disbanding as adolescence waned. A recent sample darling of both Kanye West and Tyler The Creator, “Bound” has revealed the Ponderosa Twins Plus One as the real Midwest kid soul deal. Numero is proud to present the first official American repressing of the original 1971 release, with fresh remasters from the original analog tapes, two previously unissued bonus tracks, and a replica tip on sleeve, making this an album you’re bound to fall in love with.
Prince Paul: Prince Among Thieves (Tommy Boy) LP Tommy Boy presents a colored vinyl 2LP pressing of Prince Paul’s A Prince Among Thieves as part of the label’s 40th anniversary celebration. While he may be best known for his work with groups like De La Soul, Stetsasonic and Handsome Boy Modeling School, it is often his solo work that fans turn to when craving that unadulterated Prince Paul sound. Released in 1999, his long out of print sophomore album, A Prince Among Thieves, has since become an undeniable classic amongst hip-hop enthusiasts and record collectors alike. Featuring an all-star ensemble of golden era MC’s like Sadat X, Xzibit, De La Soul, Biz Markie, Big Daddy Kane and more, this ambitious piece of humorous hip-hop storytelling is like an odyssey of 90’s rap, even earning praise from music essayist Robert Christgau, who called it “the closest thing to a true rock opera you’ve ever heard.” What lies beneath, however, is biting satire which plants listeners right in the thick of the struggle, the hustle, the rough underground from which great hip-hop is so often inspired.
Pup: The Unravelling of Puptheband (Universal) LP Pup return with their fourth album, The Unraveling of Puptheband, which finds the Toronto outfit teaming up with Sarah Tudzin (Illuminati Hotties), Kathryn McCauhey (Nobro), Mel St. Pierre (Casper Skulls) and Erik Paulson (Remo Drive), as well as producer Peter Katis. “It’s hands down my favourite PUP record, and I don’t think it could’ve been made under any other circumstances,” bandleader Stefan Babcock said. “As the weeks passed, we seemed less and less rational, objective, and sane. You can hear the band start to fall off the cliff, and because of that, I think this record is our truest and most genuine to date. There is nothing more Pup than a slow and inevitable descent into self-destruction.” The 12-track collection is introduced by the singles “Robot Writes a Love Song,” “Waiting,” and “Grim Reaping.”
Kristen Roos: Universal Synthesizer Interface Vol. 2 (Hotham Sound) CS Hotham Sound is pleased to announce the much-anticipated second volume of Kristen Roos’s ‘Universal Synthesizer Interface’ series; an ongoing audio exploration of early algorithmic MIDI sequencing programs for personal computers. Where Vol I showcased a wide variety of vintage programs, Vol II sees Roos narrowing his focus down to two of his personal favorites: Laurie Spiegel’s ‘Music Mouse’ and Frank Balde’s ‘Diablo.’ One of the first ‘intelligent instruments’ ever created for the personal computer, Speigel’s ‘Music Mouse’ was, for many people in the 1980s, a remarkably intuitive introduction to the world of MIDI sequencing. Mouse position controls the placement and parameters of MIDI data, allowing the user to quickly select and alter the scale, chord voicing and volume of their work on the fly. The keyboard is used as a control panel, with various shortcuts outlined on a digital ‘cheat sheet’ provided with the software. While the program is limited to outputting four separate MIDI notes (which can then be ordered into short musical phrases or loops) within these constraints lies an enormous capacity for musical variation and complexity. Roos plays the software with a light touch, maintaining a delicate balance between playfulness and precision. Frank Balde’s ‘Diablo’ allows for MIDI data to be literally ‘drawn’ into a window very similar to early digital paint programs like MacPaint. The user can then record the data into loops, alter the note parameters (tonality, duration, velocity, tempo, etc), and capture ‘snapshots’ of their settings that can then be clicked between in real time. The program is limited to three separate loops at a time, but like Music Mouse, its limitations conceal a surprisingly powerful tool for musical expression. In Roos’s hands, the repeating loops overlap and intertwine with one another like patterns on a digital loom, slowly forming themselves into enormous tapestries of sound.
Run The Jewels: s/t (Seeker) LP Due to an overwhelming high demand, RTJ are re-issuing a physical version of their now-classic first album, Run The Jewels, for the first time since 2013. CD and Vinyl releases will include a cool new iron-on Run The Jewels patch. This album was named Pitchfork’s “Best New Music” upon release and features Big Boi, Prince Paul and Until the Ribbon Breaks. Run The Jewels released their sophomore album Run The Jewels 2 in October 2014, which went onto universal critical acclaim. The album went on to receive multiple year end accolades including: 2014’s #1 Album of the Year (Pitchfork, Stereogum, USA Today, Complex, London Evening Standard, etc), Album of the Year List (Billboard, Consequence of Sound, Rolling Stone, NME, NPR, Entertainment Weekly, Spin, Newsweek, etc), Song of the Year List (Spin, NME, Time, etc) and more! T heir press coverage has extended to far beyond just music publications, with features running in Slate, Gizmodo, Fast Company, CNN, US Weekly, Huffington post, etc. Since the album release, the duo has gone to finish a nearly sold out 45+ date World Tour. Furthermore, a kickstarter project based off of remixing the album with cat sounds, entitled “Meow the Jewels” went viral and raised over $65,000; this project is set to release later this summer.
Horace Silver: 6 Pieces of Silver (Blue Note) LP Blue Note Records has announced the continuation of the Classic Vinyl Reissue Series which presents 180g vinyl LP reissues in standard packaging mastered by Kevin Gray and manufactured at Optimal. The pressings are all-analog whenever an analog source is available, with Gray mastering directly from the original master tapes. While the first 16 titles of the series focused on the best-known Blue Note classics from the 1950s and 60s, the new run of titles curated by Don Was and Cem Kurosman broadens its scope to span the many eras and styles of the legendary label’s eight-decade history presented by themes: Bebop, Hard Bop, Soul Jazz, Post-Bop, Avant-Garde, The 70s, The Rebirth, and Hidden Gems. At 27 years, Horace Silver’s tenure as a Blue Note recording artist was the longest of any artist in the history of the label. The legendary pianist and composer cut his first Blue Note session Horace Silver Trio in 1952 and his session for Silver ‘N Strings Play The Music of the Spheres was the very last recording date before the label went dormant in 1979. In between, Silver recorded some of the most beloved albums in the Blue Note catalog, traversing bebop, hard bop, soul jazz, and charting his own path through the 1970s fusion movement. With his 1956 album 6 Pieces of Silver, Silver struck gold with a sterling set of hard bop that introduced one of his greatest compositions, “Señor Blues.” The indelible theme is one of five excellent Silver originals (plus the standard “For Heaven’s Sake”) performed by an ace quintet featuring Donald Byrd on trumpet, Hank Mobley on tenor saxophone, Doug Watkins on bass, and Louis Hayes on drums. Other highlights include the hard swinging opener “Cool Eyes,” the stunning ballad “Shirl,” the intricate stop-start rhythm of “Camouflage,” and the beguiling Latin beat of “Enchantment.”
Fuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuudge. Seems to be another one of those days when the site and the news letter aren’t syncing, so a real rag tag news letter today, but there’s a LOAD of new stuff up on the site this week! Some real big new releases…. New Orville Peck, Father John Misty, Jack White, Wet Tuna, a couple new Blue Note reissues, the newest addition to the Japanese jazz/funk series on 180g, and so so so much more! But on top of those, our picks this wee… the long awaited MASSIVE Karen Dalton super deluxe set, another great Ghost Box release, and the lofi Troth album! Lots of fresh used out in the bins in the store too so come down for a dig!
OH ALSO, we are now open on Saturday until 5pm. This will be permanent going forward.
Also, they’ve announced the Record Store Day exclusives list. You can find the list HERE or the Canadian list HERE , but it’s also worth noting, that we deal with tons of suppliers so we also can sometimes get some of the UK & European releases. Needless to say we’ll be ordering all the stuff we would stock if it was just a regular release, but if there’s something on the list you hope to find in our shop on that day, be sure to let us know ASAP so we can be sure to order it for you. Don’t worry, we’ll order a ton of Viktor Vaughn, Art Pepper, Karen Dalton, Voivoid. As usual, unfortunately, just because we order 20 doesn’t mean we’ll get 20. So keep an eye out closer to the date to see what we’ll actually have in. Oh and it’s important to note as well, no more Remote RSD, this year, in store only.. good thing we’ve all been practicing standing in line for the last 2 years.
And while there are no longer any health restrictions we are currently operating….
– in-store shopping/pick ups – 11 – 6 pm Monday – Friday, 11 am – 5 pm Saturday (if you don’t want to come into the store for a pick up, call and/or use the back door) – We will be wearing masks, if you want to, great! If not, that’s also fine, but please be respectful of other people’s space and decisions. – Sanitize your hands (we’ll have some)
…..picks of the week…..
Karen Dalton: In My Own Time (Light in the Attic) CS/LP Karen Dalton’s 1971 album, In My Own Time, stands as a true masterpiece by one of music’s most mysterious, enigmatic, and enduringly influential artists. Celebrating the album’s 50th anniversary, Light in the Attic is honored to present a newly remastered (2021) edition of the album on LP, CD, cassette, and 8-Track. The LITA Anniversary LP edition features the original 10-track album, pressed on clear wax at Record Technology Inc. (RTI) and housed in an expanded gatefold LP jacket, while the album makes its long-overdue return on the almighty 8-Track format. Both the CD and cassette editions feature 9 bonus tracks, including 3 alternate takes from the In My Own Time album sessions, along with 6 previously unreleased tracks captured during Karen’s 1971 European tour, including live at The Montreux Golden Rose Pop Festival and Germany’s Beat Club. All audio has been newly remastered by Dave Cooley, while lacquers were cut by Phil Rodriguez at Elysian Masters. A newly expanded booklet—featuring rarely seen photos, liner notes from musician and writer Lenny Kaye, and contributions from Nick Cave and Devendra Banhart—rounds out the CD (32-pgs) and LP (20-pgs) packages. The Oklahoma-raised Karen Dalton (1937-1993) brought a range of influences to her work. As Lenny Kaye writes in the liner notes, one can hear “the jazz of Ella Fitzgerald and Billie Holiday, the immersion of Nina Simone, the Appalachian keen of Jean Ritchie, [and] the R&B and country that had to seep in as she made her way to New York.” Armed with a long-necked banjo and a 12-stringed guitar, Dalton set herself apart from her peers with her distinctive, world-weary vocals. In the early ‘60s, she became a fixture in the Greenwich Village folk scene, interpreting traditional material, blues standards, and the songs of her contemporaries, including Tim Hardin, Fred Neil, and Richard Tucker, whom she later married. Bob Dylan, meanwhile, was instantly taken with her artistry. “My favorite singer in the place was Karen Dalton,” he recalled in Chronicles: Volume One (Simon & Schuster, 2004). “Karen had a voice like Billie Holiday and played the guitar like Jimmy Reed.” Those who knew Dalton understood that she was not interested in bowing to the whims of the record industry. On stage, she rarely interacted with audience members. In the studio, she was equally as uncomfortable with the recording process. Her 1969 debut, It’s So Hard to Tell Who’s Going To Love You The Best, reissued by Light in the Attic in 2009, was captured on the sly when Dalton assumed that she was rehearsing songs. When Woodstock co-promoter Michael Lang approached Dalton about recording a follow-up for his new imprint, Just Sunshine, she was dubious, to say the least. The album would have to be made on her own terms, in her own time. That turned out to be a six-month period at Bearsville Studios in Woodstock, NY. Producing the album was bassist Harvey Brooks, who played alongside Dalton on It’s So Hard to Tell Who’s Going To Love You The Best. Brooks, who prided himself on being “simple, solid and supportive,” understood Dalton’s process, but was also willing to offer gentle encouragement, and challenge the artist to push her creative bounds. “I tried to present her with a flexible situation,” he told Kaye. “I left the decisions to her, to determine the tempo, feel. She was very quiet, and I brought all of it to her; if she needed more, I’d present options. Everyone was sensitive to her. She was the leader.” Dalton, who rarely performed her own compositions, selected a range of material to interpret—from traditionals like “Katie Cruel” and “Same Old Man” to Paul Butterfield’s “In My Own Dream” and Richard Tucker’s “Are You Leaving For The Country.” She also expanded upon her typical repertoire, peppering in such R&B hits as “When a Man Loves a Woman” and “How Sweet It Is.” In a departure from her previous LP, Dalton’s new recording offered fuller, more pop-forward arrangements, featuring a slew of talented studio musicians. While ‘70s audiences may not have been ready for Dalton’s music, a new generation was about to discover her work. In the decades following her death, a slew of artists would name Karen Dalton as an influence, including Lucinda Williams, Joanna Newsom, Nick Cave, Angel Olsen, Devendra Banhart, Sharon Van Etten, Courtney Barnett, and Adele. In the recent acclaimed film documentary Karen Dalton: In My Own Time, Cave muses on Dalton’s unique appeal: “There’s a sort of demand made upon the listener,” he explains. “Whether you like it or not, you have to enter her world. And it’s a despairing world.” Peter Walker, who also appears in the film, elaborates on this idea: “If she can feel a certain way in her music and play it in such a way that you feel that way, then that’s really the most magical thing [one] can do.” He adds, “She had a deep and profound and loving soul…you can hear it in her music.”
Pneumatic Tubes: A Letter from TreeTops (Ghost Box) LP “Grounded here in his own bucolic makings, Chandler opens his imagination to the world with this very personal and contemplative album. It’s a kind of American Kosmiche Music, a paean to the wild landscapes of the Adirondacks and Catskills of Upstate New York where he grew up. (TreeTops is the name of a summer camp, fondly remembered by several generations of the Chandler family.) The album came to Chandler almost as an automatic transmission. Shortly after the death of his father, he holed up alone in the old family home with a few synths, a couple of vintage keyboards, percussion instruments and of course his beloved flutes and clarinets – the “pneumatic tubes” of his nom de plume. Channelling raw memory and landscape, Chandler laid down most of the material for this mystical and elegiac suite of music in just a few days. He later called on some talented friends to flesh out the final recordings; Paul Alexander on bass, Bill Campbell on drums, Marissa Nadler backing vocals and Robert Gomez on electric guitar. The result is a series of beautifully faded musical photographs. Gentle melodies are propelled along by synth arpeggiators or laidback sidestick and felt beater drums. Chandler’s wind instruments are woven throughout like wild vines binding the elements together. Towards the end of the album an underlying note of melancholy swells into grief during the very moving Witch Water, which is subtly underpinned with Marissa Nadler’s haunting voice. The clouds soon clear, the mountains reappear, and the wheel of the year and of the generations turns again as A Letter from TreeTops signs off with the same lilting melody on which it began. A Letter from TreeTops is not his first appearance on Ghost Box, he also contributed organ and flute on the Soundcarriers’ incredible Entropicalia album.”
File Under: Electronic, Kosmiche, Psych, Kris’s Picks Buy Here
Troth: Oak Corridor (Knekelhuis) LP Oak Corridor is the second full-length album from Newcastle, Australian duo Troth (Amelia Besseny & Cooper Bowman). It follows 2020’s warmly received album, Flaws In The Glass (Altered States Tapes) and 2021’s Small Movements In Radiance mini-album (Not Not Fun). While the same themes and intentions remain, this time Troth channel their ambient experiments into an environ located somewhere closer to minimal-wave and synth-pop. While Oak Corridor is their most ‘song-based’ album to date, it continues the respectful treatment of natural themes found in their previous releases, further tying in elements of balance, truth, justice, humility, strains of mysticism from varied origins and an opposition to the encroachment of ill-advised development surrounding them in Newcastle (and Australia more broadly). The album is a truly collaborative affair and offers something of a sound-diary of the two’s relationship.
File Under: Electronic, Lofi, Post Punk, Ian’s Picks, Kris’s Picks Buy Here
Marco Bosco: Fragmentos da Casa (Discos Nada) LP Reissued for the first time, “Fragmentos da Casa” by Brazilian percussionist Marco Bosco, was originally released in 1986, by Carmo, owned by Egberto Gismonti. Carmo also released albums by Gismonti, Piry Reis, Fernando Falcao, Nando Carneiro and Andr Geraissati, among others. In 1986, Marco Bosco’s percussive arsenal was unique and extremely peculiar, containing chizanzhi, caxixis, purrinhola, requo-requo, shequeres, berimbaus and lingo drum, among other instruments. This fusion of acoustic and synthetic, promoted by some Brazilian artists in the 80’s and celebrated worldwide, still brings memories to the percussionist. For him, the arrival of those electronic gadgets “was the best thing that happened on the planet”. This reissue includes a reproduction of the original artwork, new testimonies by Marco Bosco and a a long article signed by Bento Araujo, author of the series of books “Lindo Sonho Delirante”, which investigates audacious and fearless music produced in the Brazilian underground.
Blut Aus Nord: 777 – The Desanctification (Debemur Morti) LP Having prophesized impending disaster on predecessor, 777 – Sect(s), Blut Aus Nord moved deeper into a nightmare realm, i.e. reality on The Desanctification, the second installment in their groundbreaking 2011-2012 trilogy. The second chapter illustrates the precise moment when man finds himself embraced in frightening, almost unbearable solitude in a deconstructed world void of all material and spiritual elements. 777 – The Desanctification captures the shocking aftermath of mankind’s liberation from the constraints of culture, history and superstition – he is freed of idols but now stands alone in a massive, empty universe. Devoid of emotion; without purpose or reason. It’s a terrifying place to be, yet, as modern man, we all reside here. With political, religious and philosophical power negated – and time (our great companion) annihilated – the celestial being is stripped bare, reality altered amid irreversible illumination. Unmistakably Blut Aus Nord, 777 – The Desanctification is typically swarming, manic and cascading but also more ambient and atmospheric than 777 – Sect(s). With speed and violence eschewed in favor of morose moods and unsettling soundscapes, this journey is meditative, trance like and intriguing. Are you ready to be desanctified? Gatefold colored vinyl LP with printed innersleeve and poster.
Blut Aus Nord: 777: Cosmosophy (Debemur Morti) LP The denouement. The calm after the storm (but, still, disquiet interrupts the serenity); when the floods have washed away the debris. The circle is closed. Haunting, dreamlike, an altered state has been achieved. All-knowing wisdom prevails. At one with all – omniscient. Soaring, alive with insight, bursting with extra-ordinary energy. Almighty. At the center of an infinite structure in perpetual deconstruction, 777 – Cosmosophy represents the instinctive manifestation of human and obsolete conception of time. Where the light feeds the darkness, where every second is the eternity and sounds the death knell – the monumental work of the eccentric soul gets lost in a deep echo…and this echo is the sublime sound of the universe. A beautiful tragedy; a tragic beauty. Devastatingly restrained, the climactic movement in the monumental 2011-2012 trilogy represents the culmination of a rapturous evolutionary process. Arguably one of Blut Aus Nord’s most-daring ventures, the third and final chapter represents both the beginning and the end. Gatefold colored vinyl LP with printed innersleeve and poster.
Blut Aus Nord: 777: Sect(s) (Debemur Morti) LP In the first installment of a groundbreaking 2011-2012 trilogy, Blut Aus Nord performs six new desanctification rituals, stripping bare the age-old illusions of life and existence. Life is less than the meat; the body less than the raiment. Existence is no more than a nebulous concept; knowledge and wisdom just fading delusions. With trademark tortured chords and haunting shrieked mantras – twisted and contorted to painful extremities – 777 – Sect(s) represents Blut Aus Nord’s most nightmarish voyage yet. Choke on the suffocating dust of decay as all your lost acts [life] are consigned to utter nothingness [death]. The faces … the gestures … the laughs … the screams … the corpses. Centuries of ignorance and frustration have taught us that only the last second before the fear is real. All illusive life will culminate in mass burial. From an infant’s first cry to the death rattle of decayed flesh, we are on a collision course with MoRT(re)ality. Logical reasoning is a lie. 777 – Sect(s) is an organic, cascading volume of deviant, dark art that exhibits Blut Aus Nord’s natural habitat, a cleansing blade amid transitory moments of non-importance. Hypnotic guitars, discomforting beats and alienating voices clash with the ferocity of aural tectonic plates to produce horrific black metal decadence for an anonymous, lost, irrelevant generation. Gatefold colored vinyl LP with printed innersleeves.
Blut Aus Nord: Ultima Thulee (Debemur Morti) LP Originating in 1994 from the ashes of Vlad, Blut Aus Nord are undisputable French black metal pioneers, always managing to progress and move forward, evolving in perpetual mutation, developing their own vision of the genre. Choosing, from the start, the total opposite path of regressive bands, Blut Aus Nord eschews all the inherent black metal clichés. The group’s approach is a fist in the face of mainstream mediocrity, becoming more macabre and sinister through a blend of innovative musical research, subliminal mental manipulation, and an incredible haunted, nightmarish feeling based on disharmony. 1995’s auspicious Ultima Thulee was the group’s first full-length as Blut Aus Nord written when composer Vindsval was still in his teens. Vindsval displays a penchant for emotional dreamlike soundscapes of coldness and isolation and offers a hint at the brilliance that was yet to come. The ground-breaking decadence of Ultima Thulée is presented here with artwork as close as possible to the original release and with enhanced audio mastered specifically for vinyl.
Donald Byrd: Places and Spaces (Blue Note) LP Blue Note Records has announced the continuation of the Classic Vinyl Reissue Series which presents 180g vinyl LP reissues in standard packaging mastered by Kevin Gray and manufactured at Optimal. The pressings are all-analog whenever an analog source is available, with Gray mastering directly from the original master tapes. While the first 16 titles of the series focused on the best-known Blue Note classics from the 1950s and 60s, the new run of titles curated by Don Was and Cem Kurosman broadens its scope to span the many eras and styles of the legendary label’s eight-decade history presented by themes: Bebop, Hard Bop, Soul Jazz, Post-Bop, Avant-Garde, The 70s, The Rebirth, and Hidden Gems. Donald Byrd’s 1975 fusion classic Places and Spaces was the culmination of the legendary trumpeter’s vibrant latter Blue Note years. Byrd had begun recording for Blue Note in 1958, and over two decades evolved from a top-notch hard bop trumpeter into a pioneer of R&B/funk fusion, leading the label’s own creative direction along a similar path. Byrd had begun to introduce elements of fusion to his music with his 1969 album Fancy Free and shadowed Miles Davis early-1970s moves with experimental sessions like Electric Byrd and Ethiopian Knights. It wasn’t until Byrd hooked up with visionary producer Larry Mizell for his 1972 album Black Byrd that a new sound coalesced: funky and sultry, sophisticated yet accessible, with intricate arrangements that allowed Byrd’s trumpet to soar over top. A string of commercial successes followed, reaching a creative peak with Places and Spaces, the fifth Byrd-Mizell collaboration which was co-produced by Larry and his brother Fonce Mizell. The album featured some of the most enduring hits this legendary creative team conjured up including “Wind Parade,” “Dominoes,” and “Places and Spaces,” all of which were sampled heavily by hip hop artists in the decades that followed.
Carcass: Swansong (Earache) LP Liverpool’s legendary death metal pioneers Carcass are often credited with shaping the entire death metal genre, pushing boundaries with their shocking imagery whilst evolving and innovating with each new album. One of Carcass’ most accessible efforts, 1996’s Swansong was the band’s last studio release for over 17 years, until the release of Surgical Steel in 2013, and the last to feature drummer Ken Owen. Guitarists Bill Steer and Carlo Regadas steal the show here on highlights like “Tomorrow Belongs to Nobody” and “Child’s Play.”
Careless Hands: When Dreams Slip Through (Smiling C) LP Once again the label look to little-heard nooks and shoeboxes of tapes from northern England, chasing aces by Cheshire’s Kevin McCormick & David Horridge, and M’bro’s DJ Mad A & Dr. Stevie The Ambient Guru, with a perfectly innocent and endearing batch of songs written by then students, Brian Keaney and Jim Halson aka Careless Hands. Lifting their name from a 1949 song by Mel Torme, in which he sang the line “Careless Hands don’t care when dreams slip through”, the duo made a sound charmingly symptomatic of late ‘70s/early ‘80s Liverpool, drawing as much influence from nights spent listening to Trinidadian music at Fast Eddie’s in Toxteth, as they did from the city’s nuclear pop afterglow left by The Beatles. Tragically, their catalogue was cut short after a sole 7” in 1982 when Jim died in a freak drowning accident, and Brian went on to become a novelist, but their music now endures like a hazily recalled dream. ‘When Dreams Slip Through’ packs both tracks from their debut single, namely the haunted tropical pop bliss-out of ‘Looking For a Secret’, and the dusky Durutti Column-in-dub styles of ‘New Lamps for Old’, beside master tape relics that survived house moves and bin tosses over the intervening decades. They range from the Aladdin-inspired dub orientalism of ‘Lawrence’, to deliciously stoend lope of ‘Seeing Double’, and perkier early ’80s new wave gilded with palm wine-style guitars in ‘On The Bridge’, and the fast/slow gauze of ‘Dream My Dream’, with standout ‘Just Like Strangers’ delivering uncanniest sort of déjà entendu nostalgia from first meetings.
Charli XCX: Crash (Atlantic) LP Iconic global pop star Charli XCX returns in 2022 with her highly-anticipated fifth album, Crash. The release is ushered in by the single “New Shapes,” (feat. Caroline Polachek and Christine And The Queens), a huge pop tune which swaps hyper-pop for synth-pop. It’s a song built for a night out, and all three vocalists shine on the track. “…Crash follows my latest single, ‘Good Ones’, a track signalling a new chapter for me in which I embraced all that the life of a pop figurehead has to offer in today’s world – celebrity, obsession and global hits,” Charli notes. “I was able to possess and persuade an incredible group of producers and collaborators to contribute to Crash by using my femme fatale powers and a multitude of dark spells and curses. Some of these include A. G. Cook, George Daniel, Deaton Chris Anthony, Lotus IV, Caroline Polachek, Christine and the Queens, Oscar Holter, Digital Farm Animals, Rina Sawayama, Ian Kirkpatrik, Jason Evigan, Justin Raisen, Ariel Rechtshaid, Ilya, Oneohtrix Point Never, Jon Shave and Mike Wise.”
Daft Punk: Tron Legacy OST (Disney) LP Continuing to exploit their creative urges to their ends, multi-platinum electronic duo Daft Punk (Guy-Manuel de Homen-Christo and Thomas Bangalter) took on one of their most ambitious projects to date in 2008, when they agreed to score the modern remake of the hugely influential 1982 film, Tron. Daft Punk’s reverence of the original film and the themes that define it (the evolving relationship between humans and technology, specifically) rendered them discontented working within the means of their own studio. “We knew from the start that there was no way we were going to do this film score with two synthesizers and a drum machine,” stated Guy-Manuel. Enlisting a 100-piece orchestra, they emerged from the studio after two years with a work whose importance superseded the editing process of the actual film – the movie was cut to the score, atypically. Tron: Legacy peaked at No. 4 on the Billboard 200 albums chart and was certified gold shortly thereafter. 180g vinyl 2LP-set housed in a gatefold jacket with glow-in-the-dark lettering.
Peter Davison: Glide (Infinite Fog) LP The Fact of Being is happy to inform you about the second step in a series of reissues of early works by Peter Davison. The long-awaited re-edition of a highly acclaimed and innovative album “Glide” 1981 to celebrate its 40th anniversary. “Glide” was the second artist’s album. Released in 1981 on vinyl and urgently repressed in 1982 due to high demand it was sold out fast again and has not been reissued since that. To date, this is one of the rarest and wanted ambient recordings that finally available again with original artwork and short liner notes from Peter Davison himself. A fascinating ambient album less new-age more minimal ambient. An absolute classic in the spirit of Iasos, Brian Eno, Jon Hassell, Michael Stearns… Peter Davison has composed music scores for Indie Features, the History Channel, A+E, Biography, PBS, Warner Bros., Disney, Universal, Discovery, Gaiam (Yoga/Relaxation music), and others. Over 25 CDs of his music are available on EMI/Higher Octave, Gaiam, Davisounds, and TSR/Baja. His instrumental “Sip of Wine” (from his CD “Future, Present, Past”) received the Best Song of the Year Award, Hollywood Music in Media Awards, (New Age/Ambient), 2010. Both “Fern Valley” and “Mount Tahquitz” from his CD “Forest Home” and “Possibility” (from his CD “Possibility”) have also received nominations. Peter’s score for the PBS Series “The Endless Voyage” was nominated for the “Best Score of the Year, TV Show. Peter Davison has composed memorable music for over 45 of GAIAM’s award-winning DVDs featuring master instructors yoga and meditations Rodney Yee, Patricia Walden, Suzanne Deason, David-Dorian Ross, and others.
The Fall: Dragnet (Cherry Red) LP The Fall’s second studio album, reissued as a massively expanded 3CD clamshell box-set and a limited splatter vinyl LP with 7” single replica of their ‘Rowche Rumble’ single. “Founded by its only constant member, Mark E. Smith, The Fall formed in Manchester in 1976 and were one of the most prominent post-punk groups in the world. Musically, there may have been several stylistic changes over the years, but it was often characterised by an abrasive guitar-driven sound and frequent use of repetition, always underpinned by Smith’s distinctive vocals and often cryptic lyrics. “They are always different; they are always the same…” John Peel “Dragnet” is the second studio album – released 26th October 1979 – these editions celebrate the fortieth anniversary of this seminal album. Originally released through record label Step-Forward, it predicated 2 major factors in the group’s career – high productivity and high group turnover. The album has historically garnered excellent reviews, including 4/5 in MOJO, 8.7/10 on Pitchfork and 4/5 in Q Magazine. Featuring the one and only Mark E. Smith alongside Steve Hanley (bass), Marc Riley (guitar), Craig Scanlon (guitar), Mike Leigh (drums), Kay Carroll (backing vocals) and Yvonne Pawlett (keyboards). This is the second release in Cherry Red’s new series of deluxe Fall reissues: “Fall Sound Archive”. The 3CD version comes housed in a clamshell boxset. Alongside the full album are several b-sides and alternative takes plus live shows from Retford in 1979 and Los Angeles in 1979. The boxset also features a booklet of new sleeve notes by Daryl Easlea and has been remastered by long-term Fall engineer Andy Pearce.”
Father John Misty: Chloe and the Next 20th Century (Sub Pop) LP Loser edition! Father John Misty returns with Chloë and the Next 20th Century, his fifth long-player and first new material since the release of God’s Favorite Customer in 2018. Chloë and the Next 20th Century was written and recorded August through December 2020 and features arrangements by Drew Erickson. The album sees Josh Tillman and producer/multi-instrumentalist Jonathan Wilson resume their longtime collaboration, as well as Dave Cerminara’s return as engineer and mixer. Basic tracks were recorded at Wilson’s Five Star Studios with strings, brass, and woodwinds recorded at United Recordings in a session featuring Dan Higgins and Wayne Bergeron, among others. Chloë and The Next 20th Century comes introduced by the singles “Funny Girl,” “Q4,” “Goodbye Mr. Blue,” and “Kiss Me (I Loved You).” Colored vinyl 2LP-set with tip-on gatefold jacket, custom dust sleeves and insert.
Freundliche Kreisel: s/t (Stroom) LP Emerging from Lower Franconia’s hidden reverse, Johannes schebler, known as ambient-poltergeist “Baldruin” and surreal folklorists Christian Schoppik & Katie Rich of “Brannten Schnüre”-fame have puzzled and amazed outernational audiences from the stranger end of the avant/lo-fi spectrum in recent years. The trio is now collectively dreaming as “Freundliche Kreisel”,reaching for terra incognita rather than common ground on their most bewildering and accessible outing to date. Arch-pontifices of the electro-acoustic and outsider-art realm, they fill in gaps and invent missing links on the go with somnambulistic ease, confusing the hypersensitive and hyaline timbres of contempo-electronic aesthetics with the naïve charm of Germany’s obscure Kassettentäter and mutant-NDW. Think Daniele Mana and Lorenzo Senni digitally rewiring the 4-track recordings of Gareth Williams’ Flaming Tunes or sometimes, much scarier, it feels as if it’s the other way round. There certainly is an air of whimsical yet post-ironic romanticism to the songs contained here, a madcap, tongue-in-cheek ghost story as filtered through the transcendental senses of a childhood perspective. This attitude is best personified in the disarming innocence of Katie’s vocals whose intonation touches on nursery rhymes as much as on dirges and bizarre ‘schlager’ kitsch. Heirs to the tradition of magic realism, examining fragments of an arcane sacred mundanity like a crack in the concrete of everyday life, Freundliche Kreisel dwell on this often neglected microcosmic topography, yielding an adventurous and visionary piece of a decidedly Franconian next-level post-modern folklore.
Ryo Fukui: Scenery (Slow Boat) LP Japanese pressing! Ryo Fukui is a famous pianist born in Hokkaido. His fresh and delicate playing has attracted many listeners, and his first album, “Scenery”, has been highly acclaimed worldwide. Fukui, who started playing piano at the age of 22, recorded this album at the age of 28. The earnest performance of his youthful days shakes the emotions of the listener in a pleasant way. The swinging “It Could Happen To You,” the exhilarating and joyful “Early Summer,” and the late-autumn night air of “Scenery” are just a few examples.
Ryo Fukui: Mellow Dream (Slow Boat) LP Japanese pressing! This is their second album, recorded about a year after “Scenery”. The delicate yet emotionally rich performance is still there, but this album has more power, and the world that Fukui depicts comes closer with a clearer outline and a sense of three-dimensionality. The sweet and sad melody of “Mellow Dream” and the dynamic and fast-paced “Horizon” are among the dazzling performances. In addition, this album has three original songs, compared to only one in the previous album, and it is a pleasure to enjoy Fukui’s musicality even more. In light of its maturity and richness of content, it can be said to be a masterpiece that surpasses the first album. Sadly, Ryo Fukui passed away in 2016. His delicate touch, rich tone, and beautiful musicianship. I would like to express my deepest gratitude for the “earthly dreams” he showed me. (From the manufacturer’s information)
Hellacopters: Eyes of Oblivion (Nuclear Blast) LP Swedish High Energy Rockers THE HELLACOPTERS return with a new studio album! “Eyes Of Oblivion” contains absolutely addictive tunes with all of the juicy riffs and in-your-face swagger you could’ve possibly hoped for, topped off with captivating hooks that won’t leave your head any time soon. Produced by Nicke Andersson & Chips Kisbye (who has overseen every Hellacopters album since “High Visibility” in the year 2000), it will be the band’s first full-length since the release of their temporary farewell record “Head Off” in 2008. Considered one of the most important and influential Swedish rock bands ever, they have achieved two Gold certifications, won the Swedish Grammy and a Kerrang! Award, have amassed 100 million streams to date and have supported and toured with the likes of The Rolling Stones, Kiss, Black Sabbath, ZZ Top and the Foo Fighters. After celebrating a triumphant return to stages all across the world in 2016, 2022 will now mark an exciting new chapter in the history of THE HELLACOPTERS, with an album that sums up what the band delivers like no other: soulful and energetic rock’n’roll!
Iasos: Inter-Dimensional Music (Fact of Being) LP A “Fact of Being” was lucky happy to invite you to Iasos dimension and presents 3 epic ambient/new-age releases from a remarkable artist. Iasos is a Music Creator, specializing in celestial, heavenly, inter-dimensional music. He is also one of the original founders of “New Age,” named “the Duke Ellington of New Age and the “Creator of New Age” by the New York Times. His albums often appear in lists like “the list of 50 Best Ambient Albums of All Time.” by Pitchfork, and “The 20 best new age albums“ by Factmag, to name just a few. Since 1968 Iasos has remained focused and dedicated to his original intention – composing and recording his music, giving seminars, and doing multi-media concerts around the world. His music has been used by NASA, LAZARIS, ENCYCLOPEDIA BRITANNICA, LASERIUM, and HEWLETT PACKARD, as well as by numerous hospitals, health clinics, therapists, mental health clinics, and surgeons throughout the world. Despite this, we found that some of Iasos’s masterpieces are criminally rare and hard to get on physical formats. In 2019 through discussions with Iasos, we have chosen 3 albums for the first part of the reissues of Iasos’s music on the Fact of Being on vinyl and audio CD. May this music be an OASIS for your Soul. In 1975 Iasos, published his first work “Inter-Dimensional Music” which during the years became an absolute classic of a new age and ambient music. This is probably a first “new age” album ever released. In addition, a year after in 1976 Steven Halpern, with his well-known masterpiece “Spectrum-Suite” cemented the existence of style. Being unique, the music lays at the crossroads of ambient, new age, psychedelic, prog, and space music. Recommended for fans of Peter Davison, Popol Vuh, Brian Eno, Robert Fripp, Steven Halpern, and Michael Stearns’ early works. Now, after 45 years since its first publishing, the album is available again on limited CD and VINYL with its original artwork.
Inre Kretsen Grupp: Raoul (Fasaan) LP The artist name of Inre Kretsen Grupp (translates to ‘Inner Circle Group’) was conceived as a humorous homage towards the curious lingo of private press loners & multi-instrumentalists padding out their image with fantasy band members. For Martin Blomberg, the man behind the name, it was also the mental safe zone of someone breaking out into a solo career after decades of playing in bands. Through the social melting pot of the now defunct Wildlife record shop operating out of Malmö, Martin was introduced to the Fasaan Records crew, who released his debut solo EP Dorisk Ordning in 2019. Bonding over mutual goals in music and ergonomic footwear for men, Martin would soon join the label as co-conspirator. This full length album grew out of the live-sets Martin devised around that first EP. Sifting through these after a number of concerts, he brought them back to the studio for an arduous process of finding the right sound. With a kind of gritty and minimalistic new wave in mind, he has gone out of his way to find the right balance without falling for tropes and clichés. But however far he steers the controls for the leftfield, there is always a pop sensibility to his productions. Emerging through ambient textures and echoes, opening track “Arpa” sprawls out over a curious soundscape, dragging a rusty guitar loop around mysterious samples and dazed synth pads. The following “Buffo” is an entirely different story, kicking off with a dry motorik rhythm and haunting arpeggios that sets the stage for some epic chords. The same kind of epic pop chords that will resurface later on title track “Raoul”. The recipe for kosmische repetitions continues on with “Habo” but sets off on a more wobbly path, landing in a sinisterly funky bassline and brooding gothic synthwork. Its closest relative is found later on in “Svit” – which also seems to have been conjured in the same dark universe as Joel Graham’s rediscovered masterpiece “Night”. While the drum machines are hard at work throughout, it’s on “Vyn” where the drum beat truly gets to speak – and it does – in a crunchy, head-nodding late 80’s New Beat fashion banging with reverb and pierced with staccato synth stabs of the pseudo-Jamaican variety. Most tracks here chugs away on a steady groove, coupled with firm yet dreamy melodies. One can sense the lingering scent of the Factory Records catalogue imbued in the machinery of the album, yet there is also a crisp Nordic ambiance that demands its rightful space here. Perhaps it’s the presence of fellow label runner Ivar “Golden Ivy” Lantz providing his stark trademark violin as guest musician on “Bonum”, or simply the cold temperatures of Sweden coupled with cheap and badly insulated recording spaces in the industrial areas of Malmö. Whatever the case, get ready for some cold waves ahead.
Johan Johannsson: Drone Mass (Deutsche Grammophon) LP The previously unrecorded Drone Mass was described by its composer, the late Jóhann Jóhannsson, as “a contemporary oratorio”. Written for voices, string quartet and electronics, it was commissioned and premiered by the American Contemporary Music Ensemble, aka ACME, who toured and recorded with Jóhannsson for almost ten years. Now they have made the world premiere recording of this richly atmospheric work, in collaboration with Grammy Award-winning vocal ensemble Theatre of Voices, conducted by Paul Hillier, also a multiple Grammy Award-winner. The members of both ACME and Theatre of Voices worked closely with the composer many times, both in the studio and in multiple live performances and tours, before his untimely death.
Klaus Kruger: Advanced Dance (Early Sounds) LP After more than 30 years Early Sounds and Halfway Ritmo release unpublished recordings (1982-1989) from former Tangerine Dream and Iggy Pop’s drummer Klaus Kruger. Advanced Dance combines a sweeping mix of Kruger’s handcrafted acoustic drums and distinctive electronic sounds of the late Berlin-School years, creating a unique blend of advanced polyrhythms. Kruger achieved a balance between creativity and classic drum patterns giving birth to an unconventional and avant-garde type of music that could be easily defined as a precursor of techno. His progressive mentality led him to delve further into the tape collage technique and unique ways of triggering his drums. It was a whole new world of music – sustained by his artistic surroundings, which included collaborations as well as friendships with other influential artists such as David Bowie, Martin Kippenberger and Helmut Newton. In the time of German division, the pulsating West Berlin became a melting pot of creativity and international encounters. Advanced Dance is the result of the blazing heat feeding the unstoppable thirst of discovery which characterized that generation, creating tunes that transform the listener’s experience into one blissful moment amidst beautiful confusion.
Bill MacKay & Nathan Bowles: Keys (Drag City) LP Keys, the debut album from Bill MacKay and Nathan Bowles, is, on first blush, a collection of guitar and banjo duets – but from the opening moment, it is clear that Bill and Nathan’s agreed-upon duo is a living organism, growing as it goes. Behind the stately figures of “Idumea,” a 19th-century southern hymnal played out on their stringed instruments, a low organ drone hums persistently, signaling that this music, while coming from traditional places, is asking more of itself, seeking sparks of inspiration to light the path forward. Spirited 21st century folk music made of equal parts bluegrass, classical, country, gospel and improv.
Mashabe Band: Mandela (Sharp Flat) LP Important document from Zambia, 1987. A deep treasure this one. Despite notable forays into the global sounds of rock and disco, the local heart and soul of Zambian popular music in the 20th century lies in the Kalindula sound. With it’s ceremonial tribal roots on homespun guitars, traditional double bass and percussion, Kalindula evolved into a modern, electric sound over the course of the Zamrock years in the 1970s and lived it’s golden age as Zambia’s most popular groove in the 1980s. There to document the prodigious outpouring of creativity was Zambia Music Parlour, the independent outfit that had launched the likes of WITCH, Ngozi Family and Amanaz a decade earlier. One of the label’s principal Kalindula talents was the Mashabe Band, led by songwriter James Chisenga. Deeply Afrocentric with a name that refers to mystical spirits, the Mashabe Band often performed in traditional dress with body paint. Of the band’s three albums and numerous singles issued by ZMPL, Mandela from 1987, named to honour the political prisoner who would go on to lead South Africa’s first democratic administration in 1994, is the group’s most compelling point of entry and an excellent primer for the Kalindula style as a whole. Restored from the master tape vault of the Zambia Music Parlour label, Sharp-Flat presents an essential slice of Zambian music history from a period ripe for investigation and rediscovery. Complex African rhythms with crisp electric amplification and tribal roots presentation, the Mashabe Band formula is mesmerising and infectious.
Jammin’ Sam Miller: Donkey Kong Country OST Recreated (Musique Pour La Danse) LP Musique Pour La Danse is proud to present its first release in the field of video game OSTs, with the first-ever physical release of the much appreciated and globally followed Donkey Kong Country OST restoration / recreation project led by Louisiana-based composer and producer Jammin’ Sam Miller. As far as video game soundtracks go, the OST for 1994 SNES game Donkey Kong Country has always been a fan-favorite. Composed mostly by David Wise, with additional tracks by Eveline Fischer and Robin Beanland, it featured atmospheric music with melodic and percussive elements, spanning many genres and vibes with many brilliant musical moments in the OST that have not only left a mark on generations of gamers, but have also earned this OST recognition far beyond the usual video game OST spheres. Indeed, from 1940s swing, to atmospheric ambient matching the various landscapes encountered in the game, via danceable bangers and highly evocative library pieces, this OST has it all. However, hardware limitations at the time meant that the music on the SNES cartridge was highly compressed and difficult to enjoy without having a console handy. Enter Jammin’ Sam Miller. Using hex SPC data crudely converted to MIDI, the producer painstakingly recreated DKC’s soundtrack note by note, by finding the original equipment used to create it. He then translated the MIDI into a modern studio context, adding in keyboard samples, and re-mixing the sounds with added effect and mastering. As a result, the covers he crafted can be considered faithful HD recreations of the originals. They are breathtakingly musical, elevating the original OST to new heights and further underlining how brilliant it always was, while also making the point that video game soundtracks should not be looked down upon, quite to the contrary. Remastered for vinyl, officially licensed and presented in a limited edition banana yellow double LP.
Ofege: Try And Love (Tidal Waves) LP Ofege was formed in the early 1970s by a bunch of teenagers at the St. Gregory’s College in Lagos Nigeria. They were largely influenced by the guitar solos of Carlos Santana, Jeff Beck & Jimmy Page while closer to home, they were influenced by the music of ‘BLO’ (Berkley Jones, Laolu Akins and Mike Odumosu), ‘Monomono’ (led by Joni Haastrup), The Funkees, and Ofo The Black Company. Due to their vibrant combo of sweet harmonies, hooks & fuzz, Ofege would become one of the most legendary Nigerian groups of all time, with expressive sales and national stardom. At the turn of the century (and because of tracks appearing on various psychedelic music compilations) Ofege would receive international acknowledgment for being the first of their kind and the ultimate West-African psychedelic funk band! Their first album was recorded while the band members were still in high school (average age of 16), Ofege’s debut album ‘Try And Love’ was originally recorded and released in 1973 on EMI Nigeria. ‘Try And Love’ is wild and uncompromising blend of soul, funk and rock with complex and groovy rhythms. Ofege succeeded in creating a debut album drenced with fuzzy guitars, plaintive/wailing vocals and a backbeat as influenced by James Brown as it is by Fela Kuti. It’s a unique, raw and beautiful take on the psychedelic sound. The ingenuity allied with the inexperience of its members makes this album a real treasure. Tidal Waves Music now proudly presents the first OFFICIAL reissue of this landmark Nigerian album. This RARE classic (original copies tend to go for large amounts on the secondary market) is now finally back available as a limited BLACK ICE color vinyl edition (300 copies) complete with the original artwork and exclusive liner notes/pictures provided by Ofege’s founding member ‘Melvin Ukachi’ who also supervised this reissue.
Organizatsiya: Vlug (Raakvlak) LP After two archival releases, Raakvlak appears in the frontline of contemporary sonics, and it is the French collective Organizatsiya that gets the label’s feet wet. Vlug, Dutch for rapid, is a work marked by a sense of being in transit. Bent under lockdown circumstances and corresponding feelings, all tracks were created in a car (!) and on the road throughout various places in Europe. Haunted by good old escapism, yet already too remote from anything to really drive away from. This translates to a dreamlike album that provokes the past and the present by taking elements of both, and stirring it up until something in-between comes out. The organic and the digital blend effortlessly, as acoustic guitar and bass sit next to intelligent electronix and similar FX. Sometimes this takes centre stage, while at others it forms a natural canvas for spoken words. On Akzident and Een Lied Voor Jou these words are provided by that other lyrical maverick, Rik van Boeckel, whose archives had been subject of Raakvlak’s second release Deze Hoofden Praten. Here too, old and new blend, into an in-betweenness that forms an entity of its own.
OST: Castle in the Sky: Soundtrack (Studio Ghibli) LP Soundtrack includes the insert song ‘’Kimi o Nosete.’’ Jacket image is the Tiger Moth, the airship of the Doras the air pirates, which appeared in ’’Castle In The Sky.”
Pavement: Terror Twilight: Farewell Horizontal (Matador) 4LP Matador’s complete series of expanded editions of Pavement’s five studio albums culminates with this deluxe reissue of their 1999 fifth studio album Terror Twilight, originally released in 1999. This expanded vinyl 4LP box set contains numerous unreleased recordings, plus “Be The Hook” – one of three never-before-heard songs; the original Terror Twilight album remastered from the original tapes, and presented in the original Nigel Godrich track order; B-Sides from the Spit On A Stranger and Major Leagues CD EPs; Stephen Malkmus home demos; tracks from the scrapped recording sessions in New York; full band rehearsal demos; and 6 live tracks from 1999. An accompanying perfect-bound book includes never-before-seen photos, a roundtable discussion with Bob Nastanovich, Mark Ibold and Steve West, interspersed with an interview conducted with producer Nigel Godrich, an essay by Scott Kannberg, and a Tape Op interview with Stephen Malkmus. It also contains previously unseen photos, handwritten lyrics, notes about ideas for the song titles and album title (where this edition’s titled comes from…Farewell Horizontal), photos of the reels and cassettes, faxes to/from band members, internal marketing timelines, and a 1999 hospitality rider.
Orville Peck: Bronco (Columbia) LP Bronco is the new album from country artist and songwriter Orville Peck. A consummate storyteller, the country rock inspired Bronco plays upon the horse theme so often found in Orville’s work, but this time with an exploration of freedom, breaking free from that which binds us and all that is wild and untamed. Bronco builds upon and follows Peck’s previous album Pony and EP Show Pony, which explored themes of love, loss and loneliness but advances the story arc in a bolder, newer and warmer trajectory. “This is my most impassioned and authentic album to date,” says Peck. “I was inspired by country rock, 60s & 70s psychedelic, California and even bluegrass with everything being anchored in country. Bronco is all about being unrestrained and the culmination of a year of touring, writing in isolation and going through and ultimately emerging from a challenging personal time.”
Plastikman & Chilly Gonzales: Consumed in Key (Turbo) 3LP Triple LP version. White vinyl. Turbo Recordings present its grandest achievement yet, a reimagining of Plastikman’s 1998 magnum opus Consumed, transformed as a new collaborative composition between original artist Richie Hawtin and musical genius Chilly Gonzales. This is an album three decades in the making, brought into the world by executive producer Tiga. A masterpiece of restraint, depth, and music as architectural vision, Consumed was profoundly influential, defining the soon-to-emerge minimal movement. Shortly after its 20th anniversary, Chilly Gonzales was inspired to compose accompanying piano pieces (counterparts) for each of the tracks and shared them with Tiga, who became the conduit between both artists and led the project to fruition on his label. Hawtin mixed the new combined work, allowing each artist their own space within the project, more of a sonic conversation between them than a conventional collaboration. The artwork is a reinterpretation of the original album’s, flipped to black-and-white and with the cutout size transposed to the dimensions of a piano key, the die-cut in the white outer sleeve revealing a shiny black foil stamp on the black inner sleeves. Vinyl and packaging were made using recycled materials.
Sonny Red: Out of the Blue (Blue Note) LP The Detroit born alto saxophonist Sonny Red made only one album as a leader for Blue Note, but Out of the Blue remains a gem of the catalog deserving of much wider recognition. Red’s lightly swinging style shines on this 8-song set of bluesy originals and obscure standards, which was drawn from two different quartet sessions. The first session – recorded in December 1959 with Wynton Kelly on piano, Sam Jones on bass, and Roy Brooks on drums – yielded six of the album’s final cuts including the buoyant opener “Bluesville” and the stunning ballad “Stay As Sweet As You Are.” Red returned to the studio in January 1960 once again with Kelly on piano, but this time joined by Paul Chambers on bass and Jimmy Cobb on drums, a trio that was also Miles Davis’ rhythm section at the time having just recorded on Kind of Blue the year before. The album’s final two tracks feature this quartet on Red’s original “The Lope” and the ballad “Stairway to the Stars.” Blue Note Records’ acclaimed Tone Poet Audiophile Vinyl Reissue Series continues in 2022. Launched in 2019 in honor of the label’s 80th Anniversary, the Tone Poet series is produced by Joe Harley (from Music Matters) and features all-analog, 180g audiophile vinyl reissues that are mastered from the original master tapes by Kevin Gray of Cohearent Audio. Tone Poet vinyl is manufactured at RTI in Camarillo, CA, and packaged in deluxe Stoughton Printing “Old Style” gatefold Tip-On jackets. The titles were once again handpicked by Harley and cover the crème de la crème of the Blue Note catalog along with underrated classics, modern era standouts, and albums from other labels under the Blue Note umbrella including Pacific Jazz and United Artists Records. Every aspect of these Blue Note/Tone Poet releases is done to the highest-possible standard. It means that you will never find a superior version.
Zito Righi e Seu Conjunto: Alucinolandia (Mr. Bongo) LP Some things take time to happen, some things perhaps take a bit longer than they should but, finally, we are delighted to present an issue of the iconic, and sought-after, Brazilian album Alucinolândia; by Zito Righi e SeuConjunto from 1969. The trippy, surrealist 60s cover design with hands holding eyeballs is somewhat confusing. Rather than the stoner acid rock record that the art may suggest, Alucinolândia; is actually a quintessential 60s gem, mixing samba, MPB, bossa nova, quirky organ-led mod-jazz groovers and easy-listening crooners with a relaxed cool swagger. Zito Righi aka Isidoro Righi, the Brazilian saxophonist, instrumentalist, conductor and composer brought together an illustrious cast for this masterpiece, including the much-loved vocalist Sônia Santos. Sônia delivers a masterclass on the album’s opener, and maybe its crown-jewel “Poema Ritmico Do Malandro” The song is fierce and driving with an enticing funk intro that bursts into a Samba / Batucada workout. A real monster that works magic on the dancefloor. Sônia would later re-visit this track in 1971 on a recording for Copacabana Records, which Mr Bongo released as part of the Brazil45 series. The Brazilian songwriter Roberval penned three tracks on the record, including another highlight and the far too short “Birimbau” a catchy Brazilian jazzy-samba dancer at its finest. Other musicians include the drummer Fernando who also recorded with the greats Dila Guilherme Coutinho. The fact the record was released in 1969 meant it was probably a bit out of step with its contemporaries in comparison to the works of artists such as Os Mutantes, Gilberto Gil et al. The core of Alucinolândia is that of a more optimistic early to mid-sixties party feelgood vibe rather than the angsty, psychedelia, and rebellion of the Tropicália movement. Over 50 years since its release, the work can finally be judged on its own merit; and what a beauty it is.
Rocket from the Crypt: Group Sounds (Vagrant) LP Vagrant Records continues their 25th Anniversary celebration with a colored vinyl LP reissue of Rocket from the Crypt’s Group Sounds. Rocket from the Crypt’s ninth full-length album and debut for Vagrant, Group Sounds was originally issued in 2001 and features 13 blasts of the most explosive and dense rock & roll ever committed to tape. The new “Wall of Sound” is erected only to be kicked over. Bricks continuously toppling over without mercy. Passionately out of control and adventurously violent. Past promises are made good and old allegiances are unapologetically broken. These are the Group Sounds. The perfect combination of everything you could ever want.
Rocket from the Crypt: Live from Camp X-Ray (Vagrant) LP Vagrant Records continues their 25th Anniversary celebration with a gatefold colored vinyl LP reissue of Rocket from the Crypt’s Live From Camp X-Ray. Live from Camp X-Ray is the seventh and final studio album from Rocket from the Crypt, originally released on Vagrant Records in 2002. Contrary to the title it’s not a live recording and plays off of the temporary detention facility Camp X-Ray in Guantanamo Bay. Wild guitars, party vocals and upbeat horns are delivered in the band’s signature urgent and explosive fashion throughout the brief yet bold swan song from opener “I’m Not Invisible” through closer “Too Many Balls.”
Roedelius & Story: 4 Hands (Erased Tapes) LP 4 Hands, an intimate and surreal musical conversation on the piano from German sound pioneer Hans-Joachim Roedelius and American composer Tim Story, is an example of all the warm yet otherworldly beauty that can come from approaching a shared love for a singular instrument from overlapping directions. Recorded sequentially but on one and the same grand piano, Roedelius laid down a few impromptu piano études in May 2019 whilst visiting his transatlantic friend Story. Tim then learned all their intricate phrasings to add his own parts in the following months.
Daniel Rossen: You Belong There (Warp) LP Daniel Rossen knew there was a lot to learn if he was finally going to finish his debut solo album. For nearly two decades, Rossen had been a crucial component of Grizzly Bear, the era-epitomizing act whose shared harmonies and interlaced textures meant he was responsible for only part of a whole. But Rossen left the close-knit nest of Brooklyn many years ago, first for an isolated patch of land in upstate New York and then for the high desert climes of Santa Fe. The whole, as it were, was now his. So Rossen bought an upright bass (one of his instruments as a kid) and played all the parts himself, along with the cello. Best known as a guitarist, he took up woodwinds, too, buying several cheap student models and learning just enough to understand the rudiments. And then, largely at home in Santa Fe, he slowly built the world that is You Belong There, a riveting 10-song reintroduction to a voice that sounds both entirely familiar and fully reenergized by the act of unfettered expression.
Suso Saiz: Resonant Bodies (Music From Memory) LP Music From Memory are excited to present the latest chapter in their ongoing collaboration with seminal Spanish ambient musician Suso Saiz. ‘Resonant Bodies’ is Suso’s seventh album project with the label and again raises the bar of his musical output, embracing a conceptual approach of which Suso himself says the following: “A body vibrates producing a sound that reaches another body and makes it vibrate and generate a new sound that makes another body vibrate that generates another sound… Imagine an infinite orchestra of bodies multiplying their sound vibrations creating the symphony of RESONANT BODIES. Resonance as a principle of COMMUNICATION; sound as a builder of ties and interrelations between men. RESONANT BODIES pieces are part of a whole and are both generators of it. Unlike other works, during the approximately two years it took me to finish RESONANT BODIES, the pieces were gradually completed and small sound particles were added caused by the vibrations generated by the previous layers until creating imperfect and synchronized sound objects. COMMUNICATION.”
Pharoah Sanders: Pharoah (Alternative Fox) LP Experimental jazz giant Pharaoh Sanders made an indelible impact with his unorthodox approach to tenor sax. Born Farrell Sanders in Little Rock, Arkansas in 1940, he was given the nickname Pharaoh by his grandmother for his African heritage. Playing clarinet in church during his youth, he began playing tenor sax at high school. In 1959 he moved to Oakland, California, where he played with rhythm and blues bands and befriended John Coltrane. Moving to New York in 1961, he drifted into Sun Ra’s Arkestra and gained kudos upon joining Coltrane’s band in 1965 (the same year he issued a self-titled debut on ESP Disk), where his discordant solos formed a strong contrast to Trane’s melodiousness, though each had strong impact on the other. In 1977, Sanders cut another set called Pharaoh for the New York-based underground jazz label India Navigation, with the excellent laid-back epic, “Harvest Time,” featuring Pharaoh’s wife Bedria on harmonium, as Ohio-born double-bassist Steve Neil and former Mongo Santamaria guitarist Tsiji Munoz and former Joe Thomas keyboardist Jiggs Case craft subtle melodic backing; on side two, percussionist Lawrence Killian and drummer Greg Bandy drive the rhythm, as Sanders himself sings.
Hiroshi Sato: All of Me (Universal Japan) LP After working for Shigeru Suzuki’s hackle back, he also participated in many Tin Pan family sessions. Japan’s leading keyboardist, producer, and music director who receives tremendous respect from big names such as Haruomi Hosono, YMO, Eiichi Otaki, and Tatsuro Yamashita. This work, which was released in 1995 as the first transfer to Toshiba EMI, is the first album of his solo work “Full Japanese Lyrics”. The ultimate pop album that can be called “AOR’s highest peak” with its mellow style full of humanism, which was created by welcoming a variety of guests, centered on single-person overdubbing using electronic musical instruments. Released the first analog vinyl record.
Hiroshi Sato: Oracle (Universal Japan) LP After working for Shigeru Suzuki’s hackle back, he also participated in many Tin Pan family sessions. Japan’s leading keyboardist, producer, and music director who receives tremendous respect from big names such as Haruomi Hosono, YMO, Eiichi Otaki, and Tatsuro Yamashita. The second Toshiba EMI transfer album released in 1996. A mellow AOR work full of humanism, created by welcoming a variety of guests, centered on single-person overdubbing using electronic musical instruments. A must-listen record that has pioneered new frontiers by incorporating DJ-like techniques. Released for the first time on analog vinyl record.
Wet Leg: s/t (Domino) LP Wet Leg’s eponymous debut album was recorded and produced in the main by Speedy Wunderground’s Dan Carey (“Chaise Longue” and “Angelica” were produced by Jon McMullen and Josh Mobaraki respectively). The album was mostly recorded in London, in April 2021, meaning they had a finished album before the world had even heard debut single “Chaise Longue” or played live. “I guess how it happened was unconventional,” admits Hester Chambers. Right from the start of Wet Leg, Rhian Teasdale and Chambers focus was fun, and a dry sense of humor ripples through the album. “I wanted to write fun songs, I didn’t want to indulge sad feelings too much, I wanted to write stuff that’s fun to listen to and fun to play,” reveals Rhian. “But then, the sad seeps through, as well.” Wet Leg is sad music for party people, and party music for sad people. It is cathartic and joyful and punk and scuzzy and above all, it’s fun. “Wet Leg was originally just supposed to be funny,” says Rhian. “As a woman, there’s so much put on you, in that your only value is how pretty or cool you look. But we want to be goofy and a little bit rude. We want to write songs that people can dance to. And we want people to have a good time, even if that might not possible all of the time.”
Wet Tuna: Warping All By Yourself (Three Lobed) LP The kaleidoscopic sonic agriculture of Wet Tuna has long inhabited its own universe. Over the past five years, they have established themselves as one of the most forward thinking and anarchic of the many groups rethinking and reconceptualizing the notion of the “jam band,” all the while frustrating critical attempts to slot the group’s music into any scene, sound, or easily classifiable genre fad. For Wet Tuna’s latest, “Warping All By Yourself,” Matt “MV” Valentine—occasionally aided by longtime collaborators Samara Lubelski, Erika “EE” Elder, Mick Flower and Doc Dunn—flies mostly solo. Continuing the Tuna’s m.o. of homegrown, dubwise psychedelia that eternally pivots on the edge of chaos and funk, “Warping All By Yourself” is as radical and beguiling as anything in the band’s—or, for that matter, its principle architects’—discography. There remains a beautiful simplicity at the core of Matt “MV” Valentine’s workbench alchemy; as with the music of Can, there is in his productions almost always a lodestar fixed within the eye of whatever maelstrom or fragmented primal abstractions surround it. On “Warping All By Yourself,” funk and soul are both the unifying principles and the unlikely bedrocks upon which everything else orbits and rests, resulting in a concoction of iconoclastic, free-dancing music that has as much in common with Funkadelic as it does Crazy Horse. The kinetic, psychedelic, and downright fun “Warping All By Yourself” serves as further proof that the most visionary, truly original American art continues to be made on the margins.
Jack White: Fear of the Dawn (Third Man) LP Astronomical Blue vinyl! Jack White returns in 2022 with not one but two brand new albums – his first new full-length collections in over four years! Fear of the Dawn arrives everywhere in April 2022 while Entering Heaven Alive will follow in July 2022. White has been writing and recording music throughout the entirety of the past several years, creating two entirely distinctive albums – each defined by different inspirations, different themes, different moods. Introduced by the blazing single “Taking Me Back,” Fear of the Dawn is the fourth solo studio album from the founding member of The White Stripes, The Raconteurs, and The Dead Weather. True to his DIY roots, this record was recorded at White’s Third Man Studio throughout 2021, mastered by Third Man Mastering, pressed to vinyl at Third Man Pressing, and released by Third Man Records.
White Stripes: Get Behind Me Satan (Third Man) LP The White Stripes redefined the alternative in alternative-rock by striving for sheer power with simplicity rather than excess. From its rock duo lineup to its musical minimalism, the band stormed onto the scene at the dawn of the 21st century and achieved massive critical acclaim, multiple Grammys and platinum sales. More acoustic and less electric, with more piano and less guitar than previous efforts, 2005’s Get Behind Me Satan charted at #3, won the Grammy for Best Alternative Music Album while the track “My Doorbell” was nominated for Best Pop Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocal. On the Modern Rock chart, “Blue Orchid” hit #1, “The Denial Twist” #5 and “My Doorbell” #13. “Truth is sort of the number one theme throughout the whole album,” White told NPR ahead of the record’s original release, and the power of the truth is readily apparent here. In honor of its ten year anniversary, the pivotal Get Behind Me Satan is being released commercially on standard 180g double vinyl for the first time!
A.R. Wilson: Old Gold (Impatience) LP Melbourne auteur Andrew Wilson (Andras, A.R.T. Wilson, Wilson Tanner) soils the ‘Australian songbook’ with a collection of fragile, private and deranged songs of parrots, pancakes and gelignite amidst the Victorian Gold Rush of 1850s. Old Gold is filled with fakes and fools, rumbling stomachs and acousmatic terrors – a lonely, self-pitying search evoked by faintly medieval folk music that sounds almost period-perfect but somehow, oddly, wonderfully spoiled. Gut string guitars, water-logged mandolins, bar room banjos and no-fidelity piano all sound perfectly organic – except they’re not. No acoustic instruments were handled in the making of the record, including environmental sounds which were generated during a residency at Melbourne Electronic Sound Studio. The reproduction of familiar sounds via inorganic means situates the record in a moonlit, melancholy hole of its own. Old Gold was written, played and recorded by Andrew Wilson, and mastered by Mikey Young. Artwork is by Luca Schenardi. Andrew Wilson has released records as Andras, A.R.T. Wilson, Berko and House Of Dad and he is one half of Wilson Tanner. His work has appeared on labels including Beats In Space, Efficient Space, Growing Bin Records, Public Possession, Dopeness Galore, Mexican Summer and his own Punp imprint.
Various: Err Rec Library Vol 1 – Espaces Urbains (ERR) LP “ERR REC Library Vol.1/ Urban Spaces” features 8 Parisian composers. These soustractive synthesis quakers, obsessed by a certain idea of electronic, electro acoustic, film and library music that one produces by tweaking potentiometers and filtering waveforms. Those few who are able to turn into “chamber multi-instrumentalists” and studio wizards, in order to experiment and create some never-heard-before soundtracks. Imagine such a inspired and meticulously referenced vintage machine gospel that would undoubtably, and unfortunately, end up on the hard drive of a macbook. All of the participants followed the French library music tradition, signing their jewels under a pseudonyme: And thus the plot thickens like moist concrete.
Various: Fralst! Swedish Christian Grooves 1969-1979 (Subliminal Sounds) LP This 2LP album collection presents some of the best and unique music that could be found on rare records released by the Swedish Christian communities between 1969-1979. Between doubt and faith, there was way out pop, gospel, funk, rock and psychedelic sounds with wah-wah fuzz guitars and conga rhythms. The common determinator: to spread the Christian message through music. Several of these cuts are from ultra-rare records that are known only to collectors, while others are from records so obscure that only a few copies are known to exist. One can compare some of the musical expressions of the Swedish Free Churches with the burgeoning Swedish “progg” music movement of the time. They share the same experimental musical moods, lyrical messages about love and community, justice, and international solidarity, but the recordings presented here also incorporate the Holy Trinity. Like the man it praised, much of this music was misunderstood in its time. But to a new generation of listeners, whether they seek salvation or soulfulness, these tracks may be a gospel that finally reaches its true believers.
Various: Mike Taylor Remembered (Lantern Heights) LP “The Syd Barrett of the avant-jazz scene” British jazz composer, pianist, songwriter, Mike Taylor died tragically young, leaving just two albums as well as co-writes with Ginger Baker for Cream’s Wheels Of Fire album to his name. In 1973, under the direction of Neil Ardley, several of the performers who had worked with him recorded an album of Taylor’s surviving orchestral music, jazz tunes and songs as a memorial to him and to preserve his work as a composer and song writer for posterity. Taken from Ardley’s master tapes, this is their critically-acclaimed tribute to a master of his art by friends and colleagues, themselves representing a cross-section of the cream of modern British jazz talent of the day. 180 gram vinyl. Personnel: Tony Fisher, Greg Bowen, Henry Lowther, Ian Carr (trumpets, flugelhorn); Chris Pyne, David Horler (trombones); Ray Premru (bass trombone); Barbara Thompson (flute, alto flute, soprano sax); Ray Warleigh (flute, alto sax); Stan Sulzmann (flute, alto sax, soprano sax); Bob Efford (oboe, tenor sax, bassoon); Dave Gelly (bass clarinet, clarinet, tenor sax); Bunny Gould (bass clarinet, bassoon); Peter Lemer (piano, electric piano, synthesizer); Alan Branscombe (vibraphone); Chris Laurence, Ron Mathewson (bass, bass guitar); Jon Hiseman (drums, percussion); Neil Ardley (director); Norma Winstone (vocal) Composed by Mike Taylor. Music direction by Neil Ardley. Recorded by Denis Preston at Landsdowne Studios, London, 1973. Mastered by Martin Mitchell at Moorend Studios, February 2007. “You’ll be returning to this for eons to fully unlock its genius.” –Record Collector “From the eerie opening sounds, like an orchestra tuning up, through a searing chord, and then into the frantic countermelody under long brass on ‘Brown Thursday’, and the baleful march-time of ‘Land of Rhyme in Time’, Taylor’s audacity is plain.” –The Guardian
Various: Needs (Not Wants) – Retrospective Part 1 (Rush Hour) LP Part 1 of the Needs (not wants) retrospective, comes with an insert with a collage of archival photos and liner notes by Gerd Janson. Re-mastered by François Kevorkian. Sometimes, three words are enough to tell it all. Accordingly, the core story of Needs – the musical adventure of brothers Lars and Marek Bartkuhn and their partner Jan “Yannick” Elverfeld – can be understood from the inspiration behind this compilation’s title. Paying homage to the title of a lesser-known Marshall Jefferson and Ce Ce Rogers production for Strictly Rhythm, Needs (not wants) typifies their aesthetic, ethos, innovations and modus operandi. Materializing in this collection are some of the outfits’ best takes (from 1999 to 2006), moments of glory and predictive flashes of genius paint a beautiful picture of what can happen if devotion and imagination are paired with moxie and skill.
Various: Needs (Not Wants) – Retrospective Part 2 (Rush Hour) LP Part 2 of the Needs (not wants) retrospective, comes with an insert with a collage of archival photos and liner notes by Gerd Janson. Re-mastered by François Kevorkian. Sometimes, three words are enough to tell it all. Accordingly, the core story of Needs – the musical adventure of brothers Lars and Marek Bartkuhn and their partner Jan “Yannick” Elverfeld – can be understood from the inspiration behind this compilation’s title. Paying homage to the title of a lesser-known Marshall Jefferson and Ce Ce Rogers production for Strictly Rhythm, Needs (not wants) typifies their aesthetic, ethos, innovations and modus operandi. Materializing in this collection are some of the outfits’ best takes (from 1999 to 2006), moments of glory and predictive flashes of genius paint a beautiful picture of what can happen if devotion and imagination are paired with moxie and skill.
Various: WaJazz: Japanese Jazz Spectacle Vol. 1 – Deep, Heavy, and Beautiful Jazz from Jazz 1968 – 1984 (180g) LP Universounds, HMV Record Shop and 180g team up for an exceptional release: from blazing hard bop to free jazz, to introspective saxophone solos and massive big band sounds, renowned Japanese jazz expert Yusuke Ogawa presents an essential 14 track collection of “WaJazz” music taken from the Nippon Columbia vaults. Featuring Jiro Inagaki, Minoru Muraoka, Hiroshi Suzuki, Hozan Yamamoto, Count Buffalo, Takeshi Inomata, and much more! “Japanese jazz has been recognized and celebrated by music lovers worldwide for decades. The origins of this trend may be traced back to the rare groove movement that flourished in the 1990s, but its current deep and wide popularity seems to be connected to the fact that Japanese people have been reevaluating their own jazz since the mid-2000s, locally referred to as WaJazz (“Wa” meaning Japan but also the Shōwa emperor period, from 1926 to 1989). Since the beginning of the 2000s, there has been a growing trend to move away from the DJ-focused perspective and to appreciate jazz with a deeper understanding. Nowadays, there is more and more interest in the background and roots in which jazz has developed in Japan, with Japanese jazz as a whole now considered as its own distinctive genre. Of course, even if we speak about “WaJazz” as one genre, there is a truly wide variety of styles within it. However, when Japanese musicians play, there is something uniquely Japanese flowing through that creates a kind of synergy. It may be the melody, the rhythm, or even something deeper, like an inexpressible flicker. I would be happy if some of its charms and secrets emerge from the fourteen tracks included in this collection.” (Yusuke Ogawa) Yusuke Ogawa has been running the Universounds store in Tokyo since 2001, specializing in jazz and second-hand, rare, and collector records. He is also a reissue supervisor, label manager, DJ, and music writer. Known for his vast musical knowledge, eye for detail, and archival skills, Ogawa has worked on more than 250 reissues and compilations – including the highly praised Deep Jazz Reality and Project Re: Vinyl series. He is the co-author of the Wa-Jazz Disc Guide and the Independent Black Jazz of America books.