It seems so uneventful here now RSD out of the way. But we’re keeping busy! Lots of stuff being restocked. A bunch of new stuff. Buyin’ and pricing up used records. That new Sleep record shipped today, maybe it’ll show up tomorrow…. maybe… Come have a dig!
Also, next Friday, we have a little show going down… more details HERE
…..pick of the week…..
Various: Brown Acid – The Sixth Trip (Riding Easy) LP
In tomorrow… Six volumes worth of licensed tracks released in just three years: doing the Dark Lord’s work isn’t an easy job, but somebody’s gotta do it, so here is Brown Acid – The Sixth Trip, with more lined up. The heads just can’t get enough obscure hard rock, heavy psych, and proto-metal from the late‘60s and ‘70s! This time around Riding Easy present ten deep cuts from across the continental USA and one from the neighbors up North. This trip kicks off with an outrageous number from Gold out of San Francisco circa 1970. The band used to open their sets with this over-the-top frantic jammer which is absolutely mind-blowing! Delving deeper into the depths, Canadians continue to prove that they could bang heads with the best of ‘em! Heat Exchange from Toronto released the rollicking ripper “Inferno” on the Yorkville label way back in 1968 and it’s still thumping almost fifty years later. Some more examples of the mind-melting tracks on this platter: Missouri isn’t a state that brought us a lot of heavy 45s, but there are a handful of outstanding tracks, one of which is the funk-laced anthem “Give Me Time” by Backwood Memory from Kansas City. Youngstown, Ohio, meanwhile, might have been the Hard Rock Mecca back in the day. Travis is yet another Youngstown group that aimed to get asses out of seats and out in the streets. Truth & Janey had their incredible proto-metal masterpiece 1976 album No Rest For The Wicked; released four years earlier, “Midnight Horseman” was a 45-only track, included here! Those are just some of the fruits of months worth of record digging and detective work included on this latest installment. This is the stuff that makes life worth living, at least until the next Trip…
File Under: Psych, Metal, Acid Rock
Arndales: Shops (In The Red) LP
In tomorrow… Arndales hail from the Three Counties (Hertfordshire, Bedfordshire, Buckinghamshire) area of England, a hinterland bolted on to North London. Members of the band have also performed with Country Teasers, Art Brut, Collapsed Lung, Thrilled Skinny and others. They describe their music as “Three Counties Ug-Rock.” On their new album they have taken inspiration from the rich world of retail jargon. The main source of lyrical inspiration was a shared Google Doc where friends could deposit the latest nuggets of retail gobbledygook they’d heard at work. Opening track “Prestige Pricing” is named after the practice of deliberately inflating the price of a product to indicate it’s prestigious status. “Dark Store” takes its name from the customer-free supermarkets used to fulfill online shopping orders. Album closer “Theme from A Big 10-8 Place” is a cover of the Negativland song, transferring the narrative from the Bay Area to mid Bedfordshire, England.
File Under: Punk, Garage
Bonnie ‘Prince’ Billy: Wolf of the Cosmos (Drag City) LP
“Sonata Mix Dwarf Cosmos by Susanna is a record that I’ve spent a lot of time with, and so this has been a long-imagined project, an attempt to understand or, better yet, experience the mysteries of that record. the lyrics are repetitive, almost like nursery rhymes for undead teenagers. Why is it so scary, why is it so sweet, why is it so comforting and disruptive at the same time. After Emmett and Cheyenne and I made Chijimi, I thought we were really onto something, and it felt like we’d made an ideal laboratory/process for reproducing the cosmos record. It’s taken a many years to get back into this lab, though. and I thought to expand the lab personnel by one, Chris Rodhaffer, would be a good way to fuck with the control.”
File Under: Folk
Cut Worms: Hollow Ground (Jagjaguwar) LP
Max Clarke has a knack for conjuring up warmth in his music, like endless summer or ageless youth. The 27-year-old’s debut LP, Hollow Ground, crackles with the heat of a love-struck nostalgia, woven together with a palpable Everly Brothers’ influence and retro sound. It reaches back into decades of plainspoken, unfussy, and squarely American storytelling and pulls it forth into 2018. Some of Hollow Ground bloomed from that same period of driven creativity that yielded his EP Alien Sunset; both “Like Going Down Sideways” and “Don’t Want To Say Good-Bye” find new life on the LP. The rest is new. There’s “Till Tomorrow Goes Away,” a sheepish love song, thrumming with twangy guitar and a two-step rhythm. “Cash For Gold” channels buoyancy; a doo-wop effect on the sleepy backing vocals build out the dreaminess of Clarke’s own affecting croon. Hollow Ground strikes the balance between cerebral and simplicity in his storytelling. His lyrics explore the raw realm of youth, its weightlessness and possibilities, but channeled through a lens of restraint. Someone who’s old enough to know better but still gets drawn back in to the romanticism of teenage feelings – and knows how to take the listener along, too.
File Under: Indie Rock
Drinks: Hippo Lite (Drag City) LP
The latest from Cate Le Bon and Tim Presley as Drinks. “A month spent in an old mill in the under belly of France. River swimming thrice a day. Hot nights soundtracked by the rattle of randy frogs. Scorpion fear. In the sheets, on the face. Hours of bird watching—no phone service. No wifi. 3 DVDs. Jurassic Park 1, 2 & 3. Violin practice. Bread scoffing. Early morning coffee drinking before the sun was too hot to do anything but snooze in the thick walled house. Music in the afternoon after a dip in the river and a cold beer on the square. With all the ease and air needed, in this mysterious place, we made an album made for each other by one another with no hands, eyes or ears piercing the bubble other than our dear friend Steve who slid in under the door and took note of it all.”—Cate Le Bon
File Under: Rock, Post Punk
Freak Heat Waves: Beyond XXXL (Telephone Explosion) LP
In the two years since their last release, Freak Heat Waves have continued a perpetual process of transformation. Shedding familiar influences from the heavily excavated histories of post-punk and krautrock, the band has now beamed into uncharted territory with the otherworldly sound of their third album, Beyond XXXL. Beyond XXXL is 11-song excursion, alien strains of synth-pop and glam-rock are sandblasted with smooth guitar solos, eerie electronics, and pulsating drum machines propelled into skull-shattering breakbeats. Deeply distorted vocals narrate the narcoleptic trip like a DJ Screw mixtape splicing together John Foxx, John Maus, and The Prodigy. The result is Freak Heat Waves’ most cohesive and captivating release to date, amplifying earlier melodic sensibilities while remaining singularly strange.
File Under: Post Punk
Ghastly: Death Velour (20 Buck Spin) LP
In tomorrow… While Finland’s Ghastly may be a new name to many, those who delve deeply enough into the death metal underworld, as 20 Buck Spin often does, will recall the band’s debut album Carrion Of Time released a few years back on cult tastemaker label Me Saco Un Ojo (Morbus Chron, Undergang, Phrenelith). A few years have passed and the band now resurfaces with their masterfully executed second album Death Velour. While there’s no question this is a pure death metal album, it could hardly be confused with most of the current bands making the rounds. The nightmarish hallucinatory sound Ghastly invokes conjures the horror of rotting in incomprehensible obscurity, passing into oblivion guided by a many-colored specter of strange origin across the Styx. An air of psych-induced weirdness and shrieking dread permeates the decomposed palette throughout the album’s cryptic duration. Like discovering a forgotten relic of mysterious brilliance from the early Finnish death metal scene, this album is a phantasm of blinding light onto the foreboding darkness of this mortal coil.
File Under: Metal
Grouper: Grid of Points (Kranky) LP
In tomorrow… Not long after recording her tenth album Ruins, Liz Harris traveled to Wyoming to work on art and record music. She found herself drawn towards the pairing of skeletal piano phrasing with spare, rich bursts of vocal harmony. A series of stark songs emerged, minimal and vulnerable, woven with emotive silences. Inspired by “the idea that something is missing or cold,” the pieces float and fade like vignettes, implying as much as they reveal. She describes them as “small texts hanging in space,” impressions of mortality, melody, and the unseen—fleeting beauty, interrupted. Grid Of Points stands as a concise and potently poetic addition to the Grouper catalog. “Grid Of Points is a set of songs for piano and voice. I wrote these songs over a week and a half; they stopped abruptly when I was interrupted by a high fever. Though brief, it is complete. The intimacy and abbreviation of this music allude to an essence that the songs lyrics speak more directly of. The space left after matter has departed, a stage after the characters have gone, the hollow of some central column, missing.” —Liz Harris
File Under: Ambient, Folk
Jon Hopkins: Singularity (Domino) LP
Jon Hopkins makes his long awaited return with Singularity, his first since the Mercury Prize-nominated 2013 breakthrough, Immunity. Singularity begins and ends on the same note: a universe beginning, expanding, and contracting towards the same infinitesimal point. Where Immunity charted the dark alternative reality of an epic night out, Singularity explores the dissonance between dystopian urbanity and the green forest. It’s a journey that returns to where it began – from the opening note of foreboding to the final sound of acceptance. Shaped by his experiences with meditation and trance states, the album flows seamlessly from rugged techno to transcendent choral music, from solo acoustic piano to psychedelic ambient. Its epic musical palette is visceral and emotionally honest: with a destructive opener full of industrial electronics and sonic claustrophobia and a redemptive, pure end on solo piano. Exploring the connectivity of the mind, sonics and the natural world, Singularity reflects the different psychological states Hopkins experienced while writing and recording. It’s a transformative trip of defiance from his initial sense of frustration at the state of the contemporary world to the ultimate conclusion that a true sense of peace and belonging can only come from nature. Singularity is intended to be listened to in one sitting, as a complete body of work.
File Under: Electronic
Iceage: Beyondless (Matador) LP
Beyondless is the fourth LP from Iceage, produced by the band and Nis Bysted, recorded all-analog by Mattias Glavå at Kungsten Studios Göteberg, and mixed by Randall Dunn at Avast Studios Seattle. Pay attention to the journey, from New Brigade, a juvenile delinquent take on post-punk, full of cold, distant condemnation, and onto the ecstasy of You’re Nothing, shedding the more aggressive hardcore influence and dragging in more light, a tendency followed on Plowing Into The Field Of Love. The intoxication is consistent, this has always been drunk music, but it’s less a stumbling confusion and more a sturdy heartfelt confession with each record. They have finally caught up with their ambition here. Their entire charm has always rested in their running ahead of themselves with blind confidence, taunting you to follow and you follow because wherever they are going is vital, is alive; on Beyondless they are treading with an assurance that is disarming, but there is no loss of charm, you are arm in arm now, whispering intimacies. Intimacies that recall other intimacies: something must have happened when Iceage heard Gun Club’s Miami. Some traumatic event! A wild band has not been tamed, but is in repose, retaining an edge but expressing something less definite, something about hurt or longing or regret. Attention must be directed toward the brilliant lyricism on Beyondless. In the evocations of beauty in profane imagery, in the plumbing of the depths of betrayal and criminality, there are suggestions of Jean Genet and the disgraceful slurring of Leonard Cohen. Love’s Forever Changes is an appropriate reference point for the record, orchestral touches to rock music that reached in a very affected/effected manner toward some transcendent experience. You can hear blissful catatonic evocations of the Waterboys, slurring face down on the bar some holy affirmations. Overall, the strongest suggestion is of the Stones in their Exile period, holed up in some decadent mansion attempting to pay tribute to American music from country honk brawls to sleazy soul revues to cocaine blues, it has this confident air of music written in the midst of excessive reveries.
File Under: Punk, Post Punk
Damien Jurado: The Horizon Just Laughed (Secretly Canadian) LP
Like previous albums, Damien Jurado’s The Horizon Just Laughed started with a dream – though that’s where things change, as they often do. It is Jurado’s first self-produced album in a 20 plus year career, more personal and more rooted than even his Maraqopa trilogy, as though after so much time on the road he’s stumbled upon his home. The Horizon Just Laughed feels like a beautiful collage – its narrative pieced together through letters and postcards, with each part contributing to its greater whole, and providing snapshots of ones journey to find a sense of place and connection to a changing world. The 11 tracks were recorded with Alex Bush in Irvine, CA’s Sonikwire Studio in February and April 2017.
File Under: Indie Rock, Folk
LTD: s/t (In the Red) LP
In tomorrow… What happens when you put King Khan and Sean Wood from The Spits together? The results are Louder Than Death aka LTD. This mini-album is the first collaboration between the two titans of garage-punk and the results are as bonkers as you’d hope. Sci-fi inspired punk meets weirdo synth damage that’s as deranged and dumb as you’d hope. Since the recording of this debut release the band have added Aggy and Looch from the Magnetix to the line up and recorded an album (out later this year on In The Red) of blistering, whacked-out punk rock that is guaranteed to blow minds. Watch for the band on tour!
File Under: Punk, Synth, King Khan, The Spits
Maria Monti: Il Bestario (Unseen Worlds) LP
Maria Monti is an Italian singer and actress with a noteworthy career, performing as a cabaret singer in the ’60s, an ambitious avant-garde folk artist in the ’70s, and starring in films by directors such Sergio Leone and Bernardo Bertolucci all the while. Monti’s 1974 LP Il Bestario is a rare item even in its native country. In addition to lyrics by the infamous poet Aldo Braibanti, Il Bestiario features arrangements and synthesizer from legendary avant-garde composer Alvin Curran, as well as the soprano saxophone of jazz-great Steve Lacy. The music of Il Bestiario is a prime example of “the new art-song” of the 1970s, as Curran calls it – lush, dynamic and full of intelligence and beauty. Sourced from the original master tapes and remastered by Taylor Deupree. Includes lyrics and poster insert. For fans of Juana Molina, Steve Lacy, Alvin Curran, Brigitte Fontaine, Ennio Morricone and Buffy St. Marie.
File Under: Psych, Prog, Jazz, Folk
Liz Phair: Exile In Guyville (Matador) LP
2018 marks the 25th anniversary of Liz Phair’s landmark album Exile in Guyville and Matador Records is celebrating the occasion with the release of the extensive 7LP/3CD Girly-Sound To Guyville box sets and this standalone 2LP reissue of the original 1993 album remastered by Emily Lazar at The Lodge. Ever since her audacious debut, Exile In Guyville, landed in 1993, Liz Phair has been cipher for a certain kind of aesthetic. She’s been called “the female face of indie rock,” a “slacker poet of the first degree” and a “brainy bad girl,” but she forever remains America’s sardonic sweetheart. With Exile…, Phair created what’s considered a track-by-track response to The Rolling Stones’ Exile On Main St by reverse-engineering sexual objectification for the female gaze, all while keeping her tongue firmly in cheek. Fusing lo-fi production with a singer-songwriter sensibility, Phair helped shape what would become “indie rock” and defied expectations of what a female rock star could be. While her sexually provocative lyrics is what first enthralled the indie press, it was her fearless singing, her effortless hooks and the specificity of her lyrics that connected with fans.
File Under: Indie Rock
Liz Phair: Girly Sound To Guyville (Matador) Box
2018 marks the 25th anniversary of Liz Phair’s landmark album Exile in Guyville and Matador Records is celebrating the occasion with the release of the Girly-Sound To Guyville: The 25th Anniversary box set. The extensive 3CD package contains the first official restored audio of all three 1991 Girly-Sound tapes from the original cassettes as well as the Exile In Guyville album remastered by Emily Lazar at The Lodge. Also included is a lavish, thick book, which contains a detailed oral history by Jason Cohen, and essays by Liz Phair and journalist Ann Powers. Ever since her audacious debut, Exile In Guyville, landed in 1993, Liz Phair has been cipher for a certain kind of aesthetic. She’s been called “the female face of indie rock,” a “slacker poet of the first degree” and a “brainy bad girl,” but she forever remains America’s sardonic sweetheart. With Exile…, Phair created what’s considered a track-by-track response to the Stones’ Exile On Main St by reverse-engineering sexual objectification for the female gaze, all while keeping her tongue firmly in cheek. Fusing lo-fi production with a singer-songwriter sensibility, Phair helped shape what would become “indie rock” and defied expectations of what a female rock star could be. While her sexually provocative lyrics is what first enthralled the indie press, it was her fearless singing, her effortless hooks and the specificity of her lyrics that connected with fans. Features:
• Exile In Guyville (remastered)
• Three pre-Exile/Girly Sound cassettes, restored from the original tapes and never before commercially released in their entirety: Yo Yo Buddy Yup Yup Word To Ya Mutha (restored from Girly Sound cassette 1), Girls! Girls! Girls! (restored from Girly Sound cassette 2), Sooty (restored from Girly Sound cassette 3)
• An extensive booklet containing an oral history by Jason Cohen including interviews with Liz Phair, Chris Brokaw, Brad Wood, John Henderson and more, an essay by Liz Phair, and an essay by journalist Ann Powers
File Under: Indie Rock
Chris Reimer: Hello People (Flemish Eye) LP
Flemish Eye is proud to be carrying this posthumous double LP of previously unreleased material by close friend and hugely talented musician Chris Reimer. Chris Reimer was an adventurous and curious musician and composer whose talent was buttressed by generosity, compassion, empathy, gentleness and modesty. Reimer picked up the guitar at the age of eight and drums at the age of twelve. While in high school he formed a band with his closest friends, a group that would later evolve into the critically acclaimed Women. Women released two vital albums under Calgary’s boutique Flemish Eye label, Women (2008) and Public Strain (2010). After the dissolution of the band at the end of a tumultuous tour in October 2010, Reimer would go on to join San Francisco based act The Dodos as a touring guitarist. Throughout his time collaborating with other musicians, Reimer was also a solitary creator with a passion for ambient, noise, and drone sounds. He would spend countless hours spinning together listless guitar notes, subtle waves of washing sounds, or loops of glitches and distortion. Reimer also had an excitement for electronics and their manipulation of sound, frequently constructing his own effects pedals and synthesizer circuits. Noise making was his driving force and he longed to eventually compile a full album from his plethora of material. Chris Reimer passed away unexpectedly and peacefully in his sleep at his home on the morning of February 21, 2012 of a possible heart condition. His close friends and family, knowing of his desire to release his ambient work as well as the perfectionism which had prevented him from doing so in his lifetime, began to listen to his extensive archive of solo works. Over the past five years, Reimer’s family and close friends have been filtering through his extensive catalogue of recorded work spanning nearly a decade and are thrilled to finally present this double LP collection to the public. ‘ Hello People’ is a sometimes confrontational, at others warm and intimate , and always deeply personal document from a multi-faceted artist, compiled from a huge range of recordings spanning lush four-track projects to raw phone memos. Veering from ambient guitar-pedal soundscapes, to delicate acoustic melody and all the way to drone noise experimentation, ‘ Hello People’ takes the listener through an experience of composition and creation from the mind of a deeply talented spirit whose vision was cut short all too soon. The Chris Reimer Legacy Fund Society is a collective of Chris’ closest friends and family who have banded together to keep his tremendous spirit alive. We make a yearly donation to the Decidedly Jazz Danceworks Children’s Bursary Program, and fund the Chris Reimer Legacy Award at the Mount Royal University Conservatory of Music. We are a registered charitable society in the province of Alberta. cjjrlegacyfund.com.
File Under: Experimental, Women
Rival Consoles: Persona (Erased Tapes) LP
Ryan Lee West aka Rival Consoles presents his expressive new album Persona via Erased Tapes. The title was inspired by Ingmar Bergman’s film of the same name, specifically a shot in the opening credits of a child reaching out to touch a woman’s face on a screen, which is shifting between one face and another. This powerful image struck Ryan and it inspired the album’s main theme – an exploration of the Persona, the difference between how we see ourselves and how others see us, the spaces in between; between states, people, light and dark, the inner Persona and the outer persona. Recorded at his studio in south-east London, Persona benefits from Ryan’s exploration of a dynamic production process that combines analogue-heavy synthesizers, acoustic and electric instruments with a shoegaze-level obsession with effect pedals. A greater depth of emotion and confidence can be heard across the album. From the deconstructed movements on “Unfolding” that starts the record with a snap of delayed snares, the apocalyptic drones of the title cut and thundering drums in “Phantom Grip” to more restrained ambient feels of “Dreamer’s Wake,” “Rest” and “Untravel.” The latter transverses six beatless minutes of undulating melodies representing “a limbo space, a feeling of ennui, of not really ever being known to others and others not ever really being known to you.” “Be Kind” reveals a musical connection with fellow Erased Tapes artist Nils Frahm, with its minimal approach and improvisational nature. On the more complex sounding “I Think So” Ryan aims to replicate a color collage with sound. Like a musical kaleidoscope, a flashing and convoluted mass. Written after he saw Slowdive perform live last year, “Hidden” builds from whispers to landscapes of controlled noise. “Fragment” closes the album as an innocent sounding ambient piece, almost nursery rhyme like, yielding time for reflection on how the Persona has changed.
File Under: Ambient, Electronic
Spacemen 3: Playing with Fire (Superior Viaduct) LP
In tomorrow… Spacemen 3 began assembling their third album, 1988’s Playing With Fire, at perhaps the freest, most confident point in their career. Recording began with the band road-tested and rugged, even amidst the functional volatility that famously motivated their course. The sessions’ first offering came in the form of “Revolution,” a single of heroic Stooges-devotion and the most commercially successful release the group had to date. High expectations for the album were soon exceeded, as Playing With Fire would become Spacemen 3’s crowning studio achievement and cement their rightful place on the vanguard of otherworldly rock ‘n’ roll. An exquisite mix of stuttering tremolo guitars and wistful melodies, Playing With Fire sheds any trappings of revisionism and furnishes a nuanced grade of psychedelia. Epic entries like “Suicide” (named after the notorious NYC band) and the mesmeric “How Does It Feel?” catch Spacemen 3 at their celestial apex, the very point where their collective writing, performance and production would crest and wondrously splinter.Includes download card and new insert with liner notes by Marc Masters.
File Under: Rock, Psych
Spacemen 3: Recurring (Superior Viaduct) LP
In tomorrow… 1990’s Recurring, the fourth and final studio album by Spacemen 3, is often considered the introduction of two brilliant solo projects (Spectrum and Spiritualized) rather than the work of a functioning band. While Spacemen 3’s departing statement surely reveals a deep divide within the S3 camp—each side of the LP was written by Sonic Boom and Jason Pierce separately and, unlike previous releases, the two do not play on each other’s songs—Recurring maintains a cohesive, dreamy feel with its chief sonic officers backed by fellow travelers Will Carruthers, Mark Refoy and Jon Mattock. Opening saga “Big City (Everybody I Know Can Be Found Here)” marries ambient haze with narcotized indie rock, while “I Love You” manages to arrange a beautiful flute alongside a defiantly throbbing bass track. “Hypnotized,” a reimagined fuzz-pop hymn, would become the group’s first entry in the UK Singles Charts. Recurring lays bare the essence of Spacemen 3’s persistent sound, rooted in both aural expansion and phenomenal songwriting. Includes download card and new insert with liner notes by Marc Masters.
File Under: Rock, Psych
Diana Ross & The Supremes: Supreme Rarities (Third Man) Box
As the hometown girls who conquered the world, Diana Ross and the Supremes are inarguably the most successful, highest selling girl group of all time. From their inauspicious start as the long-forgotten Primettes, to their ascension past the moniker of “no-hit Supremes” through the ranks of Motown’s rank-and-file to globe-trotting superstars, this group is as pure and quintessential Detroit Motor City as you can get. Originally released on 2CD in in 2008, the Supremes Supreme Rarities from the Motown Lost & Found Series collects the rarities, outtakes and incomparable live recordings from this inimitable group of Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductees. Listen to the story unfold from the innocent teenaged doo-wop of “You Can Depend On Me” from 1960 all the way through the slick, socially-conscious refinement of “I’m Livin’ in Shame” from 1969. Aside from a handful of forgotten vinyl releases decades ago, the majority of this material has not been released on vinyl. Until now. Third Man, in a unique partnership with Universal Music, has taken this double-CD and turned it into a glorious 4LP collection housed in an impeccably-designed slipcase, all watercolor pastel vibrant photos highlight how absolutely impeccable this group is. Of particular interest is that Supreme Rarities are the first Motown records ever pressed in the city of Detroit. Diana Ross attended high school at Cass Tech, a mere mile away from Third Man Pressing where this title was lovingly pressed, which is also just a mile away from the Brewster-Douglass Housing Projects where Ross and fellow Supremes Mary Wilson and Florence Ballard all grew up. The 48 tracks included here include the earliest Primettes tracks, invigorating covers of The Rolling Stones “Satisfaction” and the Beatles “I Saw Her Standing There”, along with renditions of hits for other Motown artists like “Mickey’s Monkey” and “Uptight (Everything’s Alright)” in addition to alternate vocal takes of stone cold certified smashes like “You Can’t Hurry Love” and “Someday We’ll Be Together.” And if you want the hits medley, “Come See About Me,” “Baby Love” and “Stop! In the Name of Love” will wonderfully whet your appetite.
File Under: Soul
Frank Turner: Be More Kind (Interscope) LP
In tomorrow… Produced by Charlie Hugall (Florence And The Machine, Halsey) and White Denim’s Austin Jenkins and Joshua Block, Be More Kind represents a thematic and sonic line in the sand for Frank Turner. The new album combines raw political and personal universal anthems with the intricate folk and punk roar trademarks of Turner’s sound imbued with new, bold experimental shades. “I wanted to try and get out of my comfort zone and do something different,” says Turner. Originally, he contacted Jenkins and Block at their Niles City Sound studio in Fort Worth, TX with the idea of recording a soul album in the vein of Dexys Midnight Runners. He found they were equally enthusiastic when he changed his mind and decided he wanted to record a more rock-led album with tints of electronic pop. “I have an obscure corner of my music taste where I’m into glitch electronic music and Warp Records,” says Turner. “It’s not an electronic record but I got into arpeggiator synths.” While 2015’s Positive Songs for Negative People was cut in nine intense days, Be More Kind was made over a period of seven months giving Turner the opportunity to turn songs on their head, try different versions, and shake up the dynamics within his band. Turner and his band, The Sleeping Souls, were touring America in 2016 “when the world decided to go collectively nuts” and the songs that make up Be More Kind started to come together. “Somewhere in the record, there’s a convergence of the ideas of personal and political, which is a central theme of the album,” Turner says. One of the other driving themes of the album is empathy, even for your enemy. “You should at least be able to inhabit the mental universe of the people you disagree with. If you can’t do that, then how do you communicate with people other than through force of arms, which is something we all agree is a bad idea.” Lead track “1933” is a clattering, state-of-the-nation anthem. Furious and direct, it’s inspired by articles Turner saw that suggested the alt-right was punk rock. “That filled me with a mixture of incredulity and anger,” says Turner. “The idea that Breitbart or Steve Bannon think they have anything to do with punk rock makes me extremely angry.” The other theme in the track is summed up by the line, “If I was one of the greatest generation / I’d be pissed / I’d be screaming at my grandkids / that we already did this.” “These ideas are surfacing again that collectively as a species we’ve already shot down,” says Turner.
File Under: Pop, Rock
…..Late RSD Arrivals…..
Tim Armstrong: A Poet’s Life (Hellcat) LP
Tim Buckley: Live at the Troubador (Real Gone) LP
Five Day Week Straw People: s/t (Morgan Blue Town) LP
The Kinks: Phobia (Friday Music) LP
Los Lobos vs The Shins: s/t (Third Man) LP
The Mekons: Never Been in a Riot (Superior Viaduct) LP
The Mekons: Where Were You? (Superior Viaduct) 7”
Nas: Illmatic Live (Mass Appeal) LP
Molly Nilsson: These Things Take Time (Night School) LP
Sorrow: Under The Yew Possessed (Night School) LP
Swans: Die Tur Ist Zu (Young God) LP
Various: 1+1=X (Erased Tapes) Box
Boards of Canada: Geogaddi (Warp) LP
Boards of Canada: Music Has the Right to Children (Warp) LP
Bon Iver: For Emma, Forever Ago (Jagjaguwar) LP
Bon Iver: s/t (Jagjaguwar) LP
Bon Iver: 22, A Million (Jagjaguwar) LP
David Bowie: Welcome to the Black Out (RCA) LP
Czarface & MF Doom: Czarface Meets Metal Face (Silver Age) LP
Dead Kennedys: Give Me Convenience (Manifesto) LP
Dead Kennedys: Fresh Fruit for Rotting Vegetables (Manifesto) LP
Mac Demarco: Another One (Captured Tracks) LP
Mac Demarco: 2 (Captured Tracks) LP
Earth: 2 (Sub Pop) LP
Earth: Pentastar In the Style of Demons (Sub Pop) LP
Electric Wizard: Dopethrone (Rise Above) LP
Father John Misty: I Love You Honeybear (Sub Pop) LP
Father John Misty: Pure Comedy (Sub Pop) LP
Father John Misty: Fear Fun (Sub Pop) LP
Hot Snakes: Audit In Progress (Sub Pop) LP
Hot Snakes: Automatic Midnight (Sub Pop) LP
Hot Snakes: Suicide Invoice (Sub Pop) LP
J Dilla: Donuts (Stones Throw) LP
Laughing Hyenas: You Can’t Pray a Lie (Third Man) LP
Love: Forever Changes (Rhino) LP
Mariah: Utakata No Hibi (Palto Flats) LP
National: Boxer (Beggars) LP
National: Alligator (Beggars) LP
National: Trouble Will Find Me (4AD) LP
Pink Floyd: Animals (Pink Floyd) LP
Pink Floyd: Atom Heart Mother (Pink Floyd) LP
Protomartyr: The Agent Intellect (Hardly Art) LP
Protomartyr: Under Color of Official Right (Hardly Art) LP
Protomartyr: Relatives in Descent (Domino) LP
Radiohead: A Moon Shaped Pool (XL) LP
Radiohead: In Rainbows (XL) LP
Ty Segall: Freedom’s Goblin (Drag City) LP
Shellac: At Action Park (Touch & Go) LP
Yasuaki Shimizu: Kakashi (Palto Flats) LP
Sigur Ros: Agaetis Byrjum (XL) LP
Sigur Ros: Meo Suo I Eyrum Vio Spilum Endalaust (XL) LP
Sunny & The Sunliners: Little Brown Eyed (Big Crown) LP
Tom Waits: Alice (Anti) LP
Tom Waits: Blood Money (Anti) LP
Tom Waits: Closing Time (Anti) LP
Tom Waits: Mule Variations (Anti) LP
Zazou/Bikaye/CY1: Noir & Blanc (Crammed) LP