Tag Archives: used

…..news letter #852 – dads…..

It is indisputable fact, DADS WANT RECORDS FOR FATHERS DAY. So, we’ve got you covered. Loads of great stuff in this week, both new and used. Come dig for dad.

Hopefully you’ve had a chance to check out our new webstore… if not CHECK IT OUT!  The inventory is live with the shop, so if it’s in stock there, it’s in stock in the store. We have an instore pick up option, so if you are local, but going out of town, or just don’t want to miss out on something, by all means, buy it through the site and it’ll be here waiting for you when you have time to get in.

…..picks of the week…..

takahashi

Kuniyuki Takahashi: Early Tape Works (1986 -1993) Vol. 2 (Music From Memory) LP
The Japanese producer and DJ Kuniyuki Takahashi is the subject of Music From Memory’s latest retrospective compilation with Early Tape Works (1986-1993). Composed of two volumes, the compilations gather together a selection of tracks from a tiny run of privately released tape only albums, highlighting a fascinating early period in Kuniyuki’s musical output, one of which little is known. After discovering the world of nightclubs in Japan around 1986, and the seemingly boundless freedom expressed there through music as well as art, Kuniyuki became inspired to experiment with electronic music. Excited by the possibilities of new music technology, he would begin to gather together a number of, at that time, reasonably accessible and inexpensive local keyboards, drum computers, and recording equipment. This became for a way for Kuniyuki to explore music not as such made for nightclubs, but certainly inspired by them. Setting up a home studio in his hometown of Saporro, Kuniyuki would record extensively during this period with the equipment he had gathered together, equipment such as Roland’s Juno60, TR-606, TB-303, Casio FZ-1, Korg 770, Boss DE-200, Foster A8, and a Yamaha MT44 track cassette recorder. Driven to develop a musical language derived as much by an exploration of music technology and a desire to create new sounds, Kuniyuki was also looking to evolve the possibilities of what he refers to as a “new Oriental sound”. Early Tape Works )1986-1993) then brings together two albums of material which not only highlights the evolution of Kuniyuki’s own work but also of Japanese electronic music as a whole.

File Under: Ambient, Electronic, Japan
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spiderjazz

Various: Spider-Jazz (Trunk) LP
If you hadn’t already ordered or confirmed a hold on this we are sold out, but we do have a restock coming real soon. If you want one, let us know ASAP to ensure you get one! 
Subtitled: … That We Are Not Allowed To Mention For Legal Reasons. Rare and brilliant music as used in the late 1960s amazing animated series we are not allowed to mention for legal reasons. And the same music was used in all the NFL clip shoes throughout the ’60s and ’70s too. Way back in 1967, an animated superhero cartoon was released into the world. It was created by Grantray-Lawrence Animation and was based on a web-spinning, crime fighting blue-and-red dressed character that had originated in 1962, through Marvel Comics by Stan Lee and Steve Ditko. This amazing series ran on ABC TV in the USA, then Canada, then a few years, it ran in the UK. The series was notoriously low budget. After Series One the company Grantray-Lawrence went bankrupt, so the amazing spider series was taken on by producer Steve Krantz. He brought in new talent, including animation director Ralph Bakshi who later went on to turn a Robert Crumb strip cartoon into the feature Fritz The Cat (1972). Krantz also slashed the already cripplingly small spider budget and brought in the idea of using economic library music. Here, thanks possibly to an independent sync agent production turned to the KPM catalog. This was one of the few really established library catalogs around at the time with a modern edge; it was full of fabulous, modern dramatic music tracks — often all on the same LP. But more importantly all the tracks were far longer than the one-minute musical cuts that many of the fledgling USA library companies were issuing at the time. Krantz produced two amazing spider series, and both were smothered with KPM music. In fact barely a spider second goes by without music playing in either the background or foreground. For many enthusiasts this really is formative music — a junior foray into hip swinging crime jazz and esoteric musical grooviness. So, what features on this Spider-Jazz LP? Well it’s music from the amazing TV series, but, not music from Series One. No, but it is all from Series Two and Series Three. From looking at archival cue sheets, over 50 tracks from various early KPM 1000 series albums were used across the episodes. It’s all distilled down into one exciting and enthralling LP. Features Syd Dale, Johnny Hawksworth, Bill Martin/Phil Coulter, David Lindup, Johnny Pearson, Keith Mansfield, and Alan Hawkshaw.

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

abrams

Joshua Abrams: Excavations 1 (Feeding Tube) LP
“The Chicago-based string genius Joshua Abrams first talked to us about the idea of this album a while back. It took a couple of years to get together, but in a way, it’s cool that it’s being released in 2018 — the 50th anniversary of the recording of the first free bass solo LP, Barre Phillips’ Journal Violone. Issued by Opus One in the U.S., Music Man in the UK (as Unaccompanied Barre), and Futura in France (as Basse Barre), Phillips’ groundbreaking album was a gorgeous and gritty exploration of textures that are usually bound deep inside the creative flow of unit improvisation. Hearing these sonorities explored, at length, without extraneous gabble was revelatory, but not easy to replicate. I could only think of a dozen other LPs of the stuff that have been done in the intervening years (CDs don’t count)*. But Abrams is undaunted by such shit. Anyone who has seen him play or listened to him on record knows he has an aggressively wide palette and a fearless drive to explore new regions of sound. The tones on Excavations 1 have a much gnarlier feel than many of the tones Joshua explores inside group dynamics. Almost more like some of the bassists associated with avant garde composition (Bertram Turetzky, Fernando Grillo, etc.), Abrams’ work here is about pushing against accepted precepts of melody and rhythm, freeing the bass from its accepted role, and allowing it to scream for real.” –Byron Coley, 2018 Edition of 500.

File Under: Jazz
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against all

Against All Logic: 2012-2017 (Other People) LP
Nicolas Jaar shows he is paying attention to the masses by issuing a widely called for vinyl press of his A.A.L. (Against All Logic) album 2012-2017. Originally issued as a digital-only release back in February of 2018, it’s slowly grown to become one of the most cherished releases in the entire Other People discography. Much like Kerrier District did to disco, A.A.L. (Against All Logic) borrows heavily from the samples and sounds ingrained deep within Jaar’s listening habits and evidently a record collection packed to the brim with classic soul, house, and most importantly, funk hooks. Keenly twisting these sounds and filtering them through a studio set up that’s leaning heavily on the beefed-up kick drums and reverb units to make a well-executed homage to these sounds, pieced together with the inherent idea of making the listener unable to resist the urge to move, be it in a bedroom, basement, or just sat in work staring at a computer screen. A.A.L. (Against All Logic) is both a well-executed homage to all of the above references, yet also just a really strong and enjoyable record from Nicolas Jaar. Its undeniable popularity digitally is sure to see the vinyl evaporate in no time at all.

File Under: Electronic
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facetime

Ambarchi/Jaeger/Rushford: Face Time (Black Truffle) LP
Face Time is the second release from the trio of Oren Ambarchi, Kassel Jaeger, and James Rushford, following on from their 2016 debut Pale Calling (BT 020LP). Recorded at the GRM studios in Paris in June 2017, the record immediately returns to the idiosyncratic sound-world of the trio’s first release, a simmering stew of electronic smears, pitched-down animal moans, and mysteriously emotive microtonal organ chords. But before long the record takes an unexpected turn, as sounds that initially enter as occasional percussive pitter-patter build to a halting rhythm. Equally reminiscent of Basic Channel-style dub techno and the sound of a microphone loose in a pocket, these stumbling rhythmic figures provide the framework for the remainder of the record’s two sides, occasionally receding into the background to allow squelching electronics, chiming bells, distorted autoharp, inchoate grunts, and the sound of a Cristal Baschet to take center stage, but each time returning with the inevitability of an idée fixe. Eschewing any clear sense of form, the two side-long pieces move seamlessly through episodes with the organic flow of improvisation, embracing the happy accidents of events conjoined by chance and lingering on liminal moments. Gradually washing out into a cavernous roar, the record’s final moments are suddenly enlivened by shimmering metallic percussion and a sequence of woozy synth chords, combining with the muted rhythms and a distant thunderstorm to become a sort of oneiric tribute to the work of Wally Badarou. Bringing together three of contemporary experimental music’s most individual voices, Face Time is an essential slice of outsider electro-acoustics. Cover design by Stephen O’Malley. Mastered and cut by Rashad Becker at Dubplates & Mastering, Berlin. Comes on neon orange vinyl.

File Under: Experimental
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baschet

Baschet/Deneuve: 4 Espaces Sonores (Transversales) LP
Transversales Disques present a reissue of Bernard Baschet and Michel Deneuve’s 4 Espaces Sonores, originally released in 1982. Rare 1979 recording of Bernard Baschet performing on his Sound Sculptures. The Baschet brothers are known worldwide as creators of Sound Sculptures, fantastic shapes of molded metal and glass, which combine the visual arts with music. François Baschet had always been fascinated by acoustics, by the relationships between the shape and material of an instrument and the beauty of its sound. Bernard Baschet was passionately interested in contemporary music and firmly believed that such instruments were the proper tools for modern music, for they offered, to the artist and performer, a personal means of expression denied by electronic devices. Together the brothers began to design and produce Sound Sculptures, which could also be regarded as musical instruments. Circa 1965, Bernard worked alongside Pierre Schaeffer as a member of the GRM (Musical Research Group) on the elaboration of what was to become Schaeffer’s Traité des objets musicaux (“Treatise on Musical Objects”). The Baschet brothers also created structures and instruments of all sizes, including bell towers, windmills, and fountains, using the natural elements of wind and water to make music. Bernard Baschet was especially proud of his pedagogical work amongst deprived and handicapped children, with the instrumentaium made up of fourteen pieces. Double-LP comes in gatefold sleeve.

File Under: Avant Garde
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dagar

Ustad Zia Mohiuddin Dagar: Ragas Abhogi & Vardhani
(Ideologic Organ) LP
“Around ten years ago, deep into a cozy and hazy night following a concert with my sound brothers Daniel O’Sullivan and Kristoffer Rygg in London (as Æthenor), they graciously introduced me to a recording of rudra veena (a kind of noble deeper bass relative to the sitar, in a way) as performed by dhrupad master Zia Mohiuddin Dagar. Dhrupad, for those who do not know, is a branch of Hindustani classical music said to ‘show the raga in its clearest and purest form’. It’s pacing concentrates heavily on the slow, contemplative alap section and works with specific microtonal gestures and deep characteristics of resonance . . . In early 2015 I was able to make contact with Zia Mohiuddin Dagar’s son Bahauddin and some of his American students/disciples, primarily Jeff Lewis. Over time we developed a friendly and educational exchange, access to a massive archive of recordings and developed these two paired titles for my label . . . I’m proud to be able to reveal these to date unreleased archival recordings of one of the masters of dhrupad, Z. M. Dagar, to the public for the first time. Zia Mohiuddin Dagar was the nineteenth generation in a family tradition known as Dagar gharana, a rich lineage which continued and performed the musical form of dhrupad. Initially, dhrupad was a rigorous, austere, devotional genre that was sung in Hindu temples. But between the 16th and the 18th centuries, it became the preeminent genre in royal courts in North and Central India, and the Dagar gharana developed and continued publicly following the eventual loss of court patronage for dhrupad in the 19th century. The French ethnomusicologist Renaud Brizard covers the story of Zia Mohiuddin Dagar’s life and teaching (a long story also in Seattle, my hometown!), the Dagar family and gharana, the rudra veena and more topics in an extensive set of liner notes in this release. Ragas Abhogi & Vardhaniwere recorded in a private house concert in Seattle at the home of the Benegals in March 1986 (the week before the accompanying release, Raga Yaman, was recorded). The Benegals were friends (and Shantha Benegal was also a student) of Dagarsahib who sometimes hosted Hindustani music concerts in their home. It’s a rare glimpse of a more intimate, personal and perhaps different kind of performance considering the form of dhrupad.” –Stephen O’Malley, March 2018, Paris, France Mastered and cut by Rashad Becker at Dubplates & Mastering.

File Under: World, Middle East
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dagar1

Ustad Zia Mohiuddin Dagar: Raga Yaman (Ideologic Organ) LP
“Around ten years ago, deep into a cozy and hazy night following a concert with my sound brothers Daniel O’Sullivan and Kristoffer Rygg in London (as Æthenor), they graciously introduced me to a recording of rudra veena (a kind of noble deeper bass relative to the sitar, in a way) as performed by dhrupad master Zia Mohiuddin Dagar. Dhrupad is a branch of Hindustani classical music said to ‘show the raga in its clearest and purest form’. It’s pacing concentrates heavily on the slow, contemplative alap section and works with specific microtonal gestures and deep characteristics of resonance . . . In early 2015 I was able to make contact with Zia Mohiuddin Dagar’s son Bahauddinand some of his American students/disciples, primarily Jeff Lewis. Over time we developed a friendly and educational exchange, access to a massive archive of recordings and developed these two paired titles for my label . . . I’m proud to be able to reveal these to date unreleased archival recordings of one of the masters of dhrupad, Z. M. Dagar, to the public for the first time. Zia Mohiuddin Dagar was the nineteenth generation in a family tradition known as Dagar gharana, a rich lineage which continued and performed the musical form of dhrupad. Initially, dhrupad was a rigorous, austere, devotional genre that was sung in Hindu temples. But between the 16th and the 18th centuries, it became the preeminent genre in royal courts in North and Central India, and the Dagar gharana developed and continued publicly following the eventual loss of court patronage for dhrupad in the 19th century. The French ethnomusicologist Renaud Brizard covers the story of Zia Mohiuddin Dagar’s life and teaching, the Dagar family and gharana, the rudra veena and more topics in an extensive set of liner notes in this release. Raga Yaman was recorded at a public concert in Seattle at the HUB Ballroom at the University of Washington in March 1986 (the week after the accompanying release Ragas Abhogi & Vardhani(SOMA 028CD/LP) was recorded) at the end of his last tour of the United States. Yaman was a special raga for Zia Mohiuddin Dagar, one of his signature raags. For centuries, Yaman has been considered as one of the most fundamental ragas in Hindustani music and is one of the first ragas which is taught to students.” –Stephen O’Malley, March 2018, Paris, France Mastered and cut by Rashad Becker at Dubplates & Mastering.

File Under: World, Middle Eastern, Ragas
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flu

The Flu: Patsy: A Collection of Absolute Insanity (Artoffact) LP
“Artoffact Records is proud to offer a this reissue of what is the absolute rarest cEvin Key-related album of all time. Between 1986 and 1989, cEvin Key (Skinny Puppy) and the late Alan Nelson (Hilt) spent countless hours recording out of Nelson’s third story apartment in Toronto as The Flu. The music they produced in those sessions is quite remarkable, blending electronics, guitars, live drums, drum machines, live singing by cats, and recordings from tele-personals, all with Al’s inimitable lyrics and vocals.”

 File Under: Electronic, Skinny Puppy
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harris

Emmylou Harris: Ballad of Sally Rose (Rhino) LP
One of the singer’s most personal albums, Emmylou Harris once called her concept album, The Ballad Of Sally Rose a country opera. Released in 1985, the song cycle is loosely based on her short time with influential singer-songwriter Gram Parsons, who died in 1973. Known more for singing songs written by others, this was Harris’ first self-composed album and it remains one of her favorites. Rhino/Warner Bros. revisit this underrated gem with a 2LP Expanded Edition that features a newly remastered version of the original album along with unreleased demos for most songs on the album. For years, Harris used the name Sally Rose as an alias on tour. So when she started writing songs about a singer whose lover and mentor – a hard-living, hard-drinking musician – is killed while on the road, the name Sally Rose was a natural fit. Harris says the idea for the album had been brewing for years, but she needed time away from the road to write. “That happened in 1982, when, after hearing and being stunned by Bruce Springsteen’s masterpiece, Nebraska, I realized it was time to leave my comfort zone as interpreter, and follow Sally’s muse into the unknown territory of full-time songwriter.” Highlights from The Ballad of Sally Rose include the singles “White Line” – which reached No. 14 on the country charts – and “Rhythm Guitar” with Waylon Jennings on lead guitar. In addition, Dolly Parton and Linda Ronstadt sing harmony throughout the album. Two years later, the friends and frequent collaborators would release their first album together, Trio, which sold more than four million copies and won two Grammy Awards. The Expanded Edition’s bonus LP introduces unreleased demo recordings for 10 tracks. Most feature Harris accompanying herself on acoustic guitar giving these versions a stripped-back intimacy. In the liner notes, Grammy-winning music writer Colin Escott says the demos are the Nebraska edition of Sally Rose. “Stark and haunting. Vulnerability and resilience, always her hallmarks, were never closer to the surface.”

File Under: Folk, Country
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hval

Jenny Hval: The Long Sleep (Sacred Bones) LP
The follow-up to Jenny Hval’s acclaimed 2016 album Blood Bitch is The Long Sleep, an adventurous new EP that sees the Norwegian multidisciplinary artist embracing an instinctive, even subconscious, approach to creating meaning. In contrast to Hval’s more explicitly conceptual work, The Long Sleep foregrounds the act of composition itself, letting the melodies and structures reveal the other elements of the songs. All of the songs on the EP recycle the same compositional motives, but manipulate them into very different shapes that take them further and further out of their original, “life-like” context. Hval recorded The Long Sleep with longtime collaborator Havard Volden and producer Lasse Marhaug, along with an ace new supporting cast of talented players from the jazz world – Kyrre Laastad on percussion, Anja Lauvdal on piano, Espen Reinertsen on saxophone, and Eivind Lonning on trumpet. Hval calls them some of her favorite contemporary musicians, and their musical background helps to give the songs on The Long Sleep their intuitive, improvised feel.

File Under: Indie Rock, Experimental
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long branch

Long Branch: Found the Setting Sun (DWR) LP
“Members of Shadowy Men on a Shadowy Planet, the Good Family and Adaptor 45 Announce Debut Album as Long Branch” “The band brings together a number of music vets, including Lisa Myers and Laura Pitkanen of Adaptor 45, D’Arcy Good of the Good Family, Don Pyle of Shadowy Men on a Shadowy Planet, and Sally Lee of Venus Cures All (and Myers’ all-girl punk group Chicken Milk). After crossing paths at various times and places over the decades — from seeing each other play to rallying together to fight “evil” landlords in Parkdale — the group are finally set to unveil their first full-length. ” – Exclaim!

File Under: Alt-Country, Shadowy Men
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lowman

Leon Lowman: Liquid Diamonds (Music From Memory) LP
2018 repress. Following on from co-compiling one of 2012’s best-received compilations Into the Light: A Journey into Greek Electronic Music, new Amsterdam-based record label Music From Memory sets sail with a compilation of lo-fi beach funk and lazy synth jams from the Rhode Island keyboardist and ocean-loving Leon Lowman. As well as a devoted painter and East Coast surfer, the synthesizer-loving Lowman privately released two albums Syntheseas (1980) and its follow-up cassette-only Sound Horizon (1982). Something of a homage to his love of the local seashore and the women he was trying to woo there, the albums also express Leon’s pure love of the sound of the synthesizer and reflect his unique melodic wanderings. With Leon’s albums meeting little commercial success at the time of their release, both albums have in recent years become highly sought-after. Along with previously-unreleased material from the time, Liquid Diamonds highlights Leon Lowman’s unique blend of lo-fi synth-funk and surf ambience.

File Under: Electronic, Funk, Synth
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piccioni

Piero Piccioni: Al Cinema Con Piero Piccioni (Sonor) LP
Sonor Music Editions present a reissue of Piero Piccioni’s Al Cinema Con Piero Piccioni, originally released in 1968. Originally composed of two volumes and released on the famed RCA SP series in 1968, compiled with a curated selection of the best tracks and presented with renewed striking artwork. Two absolutely cult and impossible to find albums of Italian discography released in a unique LP edition and carefully remastered by from the original RCA master tapes. Includes original soundtrack of the films Il Terrorista (1963), Le Mani Sulla Città (1963), Nude, Calde E Pure (1965), La Donna E’ Una Cosa Meravigliosa (1964), Chi Lavora E’ Perduto (Tinto Brass) (1963), with the huge jazz imprint of maestro Piccioni. 180 gram vinyl. Heavy cardboard sleeve, like the originals; Limited to 300.

File Under: Library
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protoProtomartyr: Consolation (Domino) LP
Protomartyr follow-up their critically acclaimed Domino debut, Relatives In Descent (2017) with the Consolation EP, a 4-track collection of new material recorded in collaboration with Kelley Deal (The Breeders) and Mike Montgomery (R. Ring, Ampline). Captured at Montgomery’s own studio, Candyland, the EP encapsulates the breadth of mood and stylistic variety of a full-length Protomartyr album – from the short sharp shock of the opener “Wait,” through the mutant pop of “Same Face In A Different Mirror,” the epic “Wheel of Fortune,” to the beautiful closer “You Always Win.” Add to this Montgomery’ss recording skills, Deal’s unparalleled vocals, and the arrangements that see the inclusion of Jocelyn Hatch (viola), Evan Ziporyn (bass clarinet), and Lori Goldston (cello), and the EP becomes a truly unique prospect in Protomartyr’s discography.

File Under: Punk
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mirage

Enzo Scoppa & Cicci Santucci: Mirage (Sonor) LP
Sonor Music Editions present a reissue of Enzo Scoppa and Cicci Santucci’s Mirage, originally released in 1971. Absolute mythical Italian library LP out of the New Tape micro-label vaults. Mirage is an album signed by SCOEN, aka Enzo Scoppa, and actually composed and arranged by Francesco Cicci Santucci, originally released in 1971 in an edition of 100 copies only. Dreamy collectors’ item and super obscure gem, this outstanding LP is another must-have jewel from the unlimited Italian music library production of the ’70s and easily one of the top of this game. What we have is mental jazz-funk beats with fat basslines and killer drum breaks, bewitching exotica groove, and dope lounge moods, all driven by a solid groovy key for the whole album. Another monster Italian library is just filed. Edition of 500.

File Under: Library
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selmanWilliam Selman: Musica Enterrada (Mysteries of the Deep) LP
What if music had no beginning, no end? Can music exist “for itself” or “of itself”, without structure constraining it, defining it? Can music be non-linear, non-narrative, simply experiential, existential? The second full-length album on Mysteries Of The Deep, Musica Enterrada from Portland’s William Selman, neither answers these questions nor supposes them. But in listening, one can’t help but wonder: What if I disappeared into this record forever? In another time and place, William Selman was known as Warmdesk, an alias through which he issued a series of sharply precise minimal techno records. In recent past, Selman shifted gears, shedding the dynamics of tension and release that characterized his previous alias’s output. Under his own name, Selman began releasing process-oriented, freeform experimental music on cassette-focused outlets like Digitalis and Hausu Mountain. Now comes Musica Enterrada, a diaphanous, weightless musical vision not unlike the theoretical square root of GRM and Popol Vuh’s early electronic forays. Split into six tracks across two sides of vinyl, Musica Enterrada bubbles, churns, drifts, and dozes. Dulcet tones pile up gently like waves on shore. Patterns repeat and reconfigure, as if heard from different angles. Rhythms appear, shift the frame, then disappear, into the ether whence they came. Play Musica Enterrada on repeat. And if you disappear into it, fret not — you have drifted into solace. Full color jacket — deluxe printed sleeve; 140 gram vinyl; Includes download code.

File Under: Country
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snailmail

Snail Mail: Lush (Rough Trade) LP
Lindsey Jordan is on the brink of something huge, and she’s only just graduated high school. Her voice rises and falls with electricity throughout Lush, her debut album as Snail Mail, spinning with bold excitement and new beginnings at every turn. Recorded with producer Jake Aron and engineer Johnny Schenke, with contributions from touring bandmates drummer Ray Brown and bassist Alex Bass as well, Lush sounds cinematic, yet still perfectly homemade. “Is there any better feeling than coming clean?” sings the 18-year-old guitarist and songwriter halfway through the sprawling anthem that is “Pristine,” the album’s first single. You can’t help but agree with her. It’s a hook that immediately sticks in your head – and a question she seems to be grappling with throughout the record’s 10-songs of crystalline guitar pop. Jordan’s clear and powerful voice, acute sense of pacing, and razor-sharp writing cut through the chaos and messiness of growing up: the passing trends, the awkward house parties, the sick-to-your-stomach crushes and the heart wrenching breakups. Jordan’s most masterful skill is in crafting tension, working with muted melodrama that builds and never quite breaks, stretching out over moody rockers and soft-burning hooks, making for visceral slow-releases that stick under the skin.

File Under: Indie Rock
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thingThe Thing: Again (The Thing) LP
The Thing, recorded July 2nd and 3rd, 2017. Personnel: Mats Gustafsson – tenor and baritone saxophone; Ingebrigt Håker Flaten – electric and double bass; Paal Nilssen-Love – drums, percussion. Recorded July 2nd and 3rd, 2017 by Øyvind Gundersen at Studio Paradiso, Oslo. Mixed October 2017, by Andreas Werliin at Repeat Until Death, Stockholm. Mastered by Lupo at Calyx mastering, Berlin. Liner notes by Brian Morton.

File Under: Jazz
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umiliani 1

Piero Umiliani: Al Cinema Con Piero Umiliani (Sonor) LP
Sonor Music Editions present a reissue of Piero Umiliani’s Al Cinema Con Piero Umiliani, originally released in 1969. One of the true rarities of Italian discography out there and an absolute grail of Italian film music. Originally released in 1968 on the legendary RCA Italiana SP 8000 series (promo-only) in an edition of 100 copies, here’s an impossible jewel by maestro Piero Umiliani that contains various themes from original scores of the ’60s: Il Comandante (1963), Extraconiugale (1964), Tutto Il Bello Dell’uomo (1963), La Bella Di Lodi (1963), Controsesso (1964), La Celestina P… R… (1965). Carefully remastered from the original RCA master tapes. 180 gram vinyl; Heavy cardboard sleeve like the originals; Limited edition of 300.

File Under: Library
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kamaalKamaal Williams: The Return (Black Focus) LP
Whether re-defining experimental fusion sounds with the hugely acclaimed Yussef Kamaal, or his catalog of 12″s for imprints such as MCDE, Eglo, and Rhythm Section as Henry Wu, South London’s Kamaal Williams has been a key figure in his thriving international scene for the past few years. The Return is a natural evolution from the Yussef Kamaal project, mining the influence of visionary jazz but blended with all kinds of texture, sounds and signals from the over-saturated London streets. At times the keyboard work evokes the classic ’70s fusion work of Lonnie Liston Smith or Roy Ayers, but underpinned by rhythms more reminiscent of blunted hip-hop and arrangements subliminally laced with the cut-ups of pirate radio. Progressive, funky, cosmic, exploratory and effortlessly musical, this is the sound of a musician honing his craft into thrilling new shapes. In the US the like of Kamasi Washington and Thundercat have made great strides in opening a whole new dialogue between jazz and hip-hop, drawing in a young, highly engaged new audience in the process. Kamaal Williams mines a similar seam on the other side of the Atlantic alongside other exciting London talents such as Ezra Collective, Ruby Rushton and Shabaka Hutchings. The Return is exactly that: a return and refinement to the sound Yussef Kamaal were progenitors of, and first set the scene for one of the most exciting musical movements London has had in years. Notable tracks for old and new listeners are “Slow,” “Situations,” “Medina,” “London Shuffle” which features Mansur Brown (of Mansur’s Message) and for those die hard Yussef Kamaal fans – they should hear the interpolated roots of “Strings of Light” in the title track “The Return.” And that signature Wu funk can be heard on “Broken Theme” and “High Roller.”

File Under: Jazz, funk
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screamVarious: African Scream Contest 2 (Analog Africa) LP
Who knew that some of the most exciting Afro-funk records of all time were actually made in the small West African country of Benin? Once Analog Africa released the first African Scream Contest in 2008, the proof was there for all to hear; gut-busting yelps, lethally well-drilled horn sections and irresistibly insistent rhythms added up to a record that took you into its own space. Ten years on, intrepid crate-digger Samy Ben Redjeb unveils a new treasure trove of Vodoun-inspired Afrobeat heavy funk crossover greatness. Right from the laceratingly raw guitar fanfare which kicks off Les Sympathics de Porto Novo’s pile-driving opener, it’s clear that African Scream Contest 2is every bit as joyous a voyage of discovery as its predecessor. Ignace De Souza & The Melody Aces’ “Asaw Fofor” would’ve been a killer instrumental but once you’ve factored in the improbably-rich-to-the-point-of-being-Nat-King-Cole-influenced lead vocal, it’s a total revelation. The screaming does not stop there, in fact it’s only just beginning. Already familiar to fans of the first African Scream Contest as a mainstay of ruthlessly disciplined military band Les Volcans de la Capitale, Lokonon André vanished in a cloud of dust at Ben Redjeb’s behest with a list of names and some petrol money, only to return a few days later having miraculously tracked down every single name he’d been given. The source of this Afrobeat bounty-hunter’s impressive people-finding skills — his training with the KGB — highlights the tension between encroaching authoritarian politics and fearless expressions of personal creative freedom which is the back-story of so much great African music of the ’60s and ’70s. Happily, in this instance, Lokonon was tracking the artists down to offer them licensing deals, rather than to arrest them. Samy Ben Redjeb’s determination to track this amazing music to its human sources pays huge karmic dividends. Features Stanislas Tohon, Elias Akadiri & Sunny Black´s Band, Picoby Band D´Abomey, Antoine Dougbé, Orch. Poly-Rythmo de Cotonou, Black Santiago, Lokonon André et Les Volcans, Sebastien Pynasco and L´Orchestre Black Santiago, Super Borgou de Parakou, Cornaire Salifou Michel et L´Orchestre El Rego & ses Commandos, Gnonnas Pedro and His Dadjes Band, and Orchestre Poly-Rythmo de Cotonou. African Scream Contest 2 includes meticulously researched text and effortlessly fashion-forward photography, supplied by the artists themselves.

File Under: Africa, Afrobeat, Funk
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boombox3Various: Boombox 3 (Soul Jazz) LP
Soul Jazz Records’ new Boombox 3 compilation continues their story of the first rap records to be pressed to vinyl. It’s a jam-packed collection of original independent old school hip hop, created with just one thing in mind – to get this party jumping. After the explosion of hip hop in the parks and clubs of The Bronx in the mid-70s, it was in Harlem where the first rap records emerged at the end of ’79 – an avalanche of superb rap tracks released on small independent labels all trying to capitalize on the success of “Rapper’s Delight.” Like hip-hop culture itself, these first rap singles are the product of their own unique set of aesthetics – exciting and innovative rap performed with Bronx block party B-Boy funk breaks, disco jams and Jamaican sound system culture. The extensive sleevenotes discuss hip hop’s trajectory from the first wave of Bronx creativity – the legendary DJs Kool Herc, Grandmaster Flash and Afrika Bambaataa – through to its arrival in Harlem via the entrepreneurism of old-school African-American rhythm and blues producers and émigré Jamaican producers all living in New York. Along the way the notes discuss everything from the New York power blackout of 1977, the Italian mafia involvement in the music industry, the links between rap and Jamaican dancehall and more besides. Boombox 3 features a line-up of stunning, near unknown New York rap artists, classic disco breaks (including Chic’s omnipotent “Good Times,” MFSB’s “Love Is The Message,” Queen’s “Another One Bites The Dust”), proto-electro and more. And by the early-80s the first rap records outside New York began to emerge – L.A., Houston, Milwaukee, Phoenix – and the first of these are also featured here in this new collection. Heavyweight triple vinyl with download code and full notes.

File Under: Hip Hop, Electro

paradiseVarious: Welcome to Paradise (Italian Dream House 90-94) Vol. III (Safe Trip) LP
Safe Trip is taking one final deep dive into the warm waters of Italian dream house with Welcome To Paradise Volume III, the concluding chapter in the label’s journey through the previously overlooked world of one of dance music’s most vibrant and influential underground movements. While the influence of dream house continues to echo through the ages, the style was at its peak between 1989 and 1994, when producers across Italy delivered a high volume of loved-up, wavy, and occasionally blissful productions that fused contemporary deep house tropes — most notably from Chicago, New York, and New Jersey — with elements borrowed from ambient, jazz, and Balearica. It’s this six-year period that provides the focus for Welcome To Paradise Volume III, which draws together a spine-tingling mixture of sought-after classics, unheralded gems, and little-known delights from the original Italian dream house movement. Thrillingly, Welcome To Paradise Volume III co-curator Young Marco has managed to source two previously unreleased tracks during the dream house period: the gently unfurling, sunrise-friendly bliss of Jacy’s “Resounding Seashell” and a special “Longer Edit” of Neurostate’s brilliant “Dance To The House”, a track that — somewhat surprisingly — has never previously been issued on vinyl before. Elsewhere, there are plenty of treats to set the pulse racing, from the must-have deep house brilliance of Leo Anibaldi’s “Universal” — a rare foray into dream house territory from the Italian techno pioneer — and the Afro-bleep-goes-dream-house trip of Golem’s “Sun City”, to the cowbell-driven, New Jersey garage-influenced warmth of Deep Choice’s “Children Trip” and Cosmic Galaxy’s “Walkin’ On The Moon”, a Detroit techno-influenced outing with a deliciously saucer-eyed, extended ambient intro. You’ll also struggle to find a more inspired house record than Green Baize’s “Tramp Heart”, which mixes familiar dream house elements with spacey electronics and tribal chants that recall Italy’s early ’80s Afro-cosmic scene. It all adds up to another essential selection of rich, glassy-eyed dream house treats tailor-made for sound-tracking drawn-out Adriatic sunsets, Mediterranean sunrises, and loved-up parties the world over. Also features Optik, Deep Blue, Lonely Dance, and Don Carlos.

File Under: Italo, House
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yoribaVarious: Yoruba! (Soul Jazz) LP
Soul Jazz Records’ latest collection Yoruba! Songs and Rhythms for the Yoruba Gods in Nigeria was newly recorded in Lagos, Nigeria. The album was co-produced by Laolu Akins, founding member of the legendary 1970s Nigerian Afro-Funk/Rock group Blo, and label head Stuart Baker. The 2LP-set features songs honoring the Nigerian gods of the Yoruba traditional religion – Yemoja, Obatala, Ogun, Sango and others – as well as a selection of instrumental cuts focusing on the Bata and Dundun drums. It comes complete with extensive text and photography showing the influence of Yoruba culture throughout the world and the social and historical context for the music contained here. The enormous impact of Yoruba and West African music and culture is worldwide – from the first Afro-centric explorations of African-American jazz musicians in the 1950s such as Art Blakey, Randy Weston and Dizzy Gillespie, the explosion of Nu Yorican Latin music in New York City starting in the 1960s – Mambo, Boogaloo, Latin funk and soul – through to the sacred and powerful Afro-derived music of the religions of Santería in Cuba, Candomblé in Brazil and Voodoo in Haiti, which all came in to existence on account the Atlantic slave trade which began over 400 years ago. On a wider scale West African music remains the primary root of all African-American musical forms – from New Orleans jazz to Bronx rap, gospel, soul and more. Yoruba! features an array of local master drummers led by Olatunji Samson Sotimirin and singers (featuring the lead vocals of Janet Olufanmilayo Abe) performing heavyweight Afro-rhythms, with talking drums, Bata and Dundun drums and a mass of percussion in these deep spiritual and sacred songs used to honor and worship the traditional and ancient Yoruba gods in Nigeria, West Africa.

File Under: Africa, Percussion

…..Restocks…..

Air: Moon Safari (Parlophone) LP
Bad Religion: No Substance (Epitaph) LP
David Bowie: Ziggy Stardust (RCA) LP
Breeders: Title TK (4AD) LP
Tim Buckley: Hello & Goodbye (Rhino) LP
Che’-SHIZU: A Journey (Black Editions) LP
Cinematic Orchestra: Every Day (Ninja Tune) LP
Ornette Coleman: The Atlantic Years (Rhino) LP
Dead Moon: Strange Pray Tell (Mississippi) LP
Julie Doiron: Desormais/Heart & Crime (Jagjaguwar) LP
Brian Eno & Jon Hassell: Fourth World Vol. 1: Possible Musics (Glitterbeat) LP
Fleetwood Mac: Rumors (Rhino) LP
Hot Snakes: Automatic Midnight (Sub Pop) LP
Joy Division: Unknown Pleasures (Rhino) LP
Madvillian: Madvilliany (Stones Throw) LP
Merzbow: Noisembryo (Hospital) LP
Metallica: Garage Days (Blackened) LP
Metallica: Ride the Lightning (Blackened) LP
Roberto Musci/Giovanni Venosta: Water Messages on Desert Sand (RER) LP
Parker/Bailey/Bennink: Topography of the Lungs (Otoruko) LP
Steve Reich: Music for 18 Musicians (Nonesuch) LP
Klaus Schulz: Cyborg (Brain) LP
Sisters of Mercy: Vision Thing (Warner) LP
Sisters of Mercy: Floodland (Warner) LP
Sisters of Mercy: First and Last and Always (Warner) LP
Smog: Dongs of Sevotion (Drag City) LP
T. Rex: Electric Warrior (Rhino) LP
Wilco: Yankee Hotel Foxtrot (Nonesuch) LP
Zazou/Bikaye/CY1: Blanc et Noir (Crammed) LP
Various: Shaolin Soul 1 (Because) LP
Various: Shaolin Soul 2 (Because) LP
Various: Shaolin Soul 3 (Because) LP

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…..news letter #847 – LPS…..

Well, thanks again UPS for delivering half a shipment today. At least it’s only Thursday, so we should see the rest of it tomorrow. Anyway, LOTS of great stuff this week. Already out of our meager supply of the new Sleep, hopefully we’ll get more very soon. Arctic Monkeys is in, but Beach House is likely going to be late. Lots of neat little piles of used stuff coming in lately too. We’re pricing up as quickly as we can. Come, dig, buy. And thanks to everyone who came out to the show last week. A good time was had by all!

….picks of the week…..

davachi

Sarah Davachi: Let Night Come On Bells End The Day (Recital) LP
In tomorrow… Recital present the newest record by Canadian composer Sarah Davachi. Currently working on her PhD in Musicology at UCLA, her trajectory has been unorthodox. Hailing from Calgary, Alberta, which, if you’ve never been there, doesn’t really scream “avant-garde” (Calgary is the rodeo capital of the world). It is important and interesting that she chose to study esoteric music; as Sarah could have easily been a cowgirl or a concert pianist had her ingrained love of synthesis and sonic phenomenology not taken the wheel. There are few people that have the diligence and resolve to take their time with music… especially in a live context. Recital label head Sean McCann: “The first time I saw Sarah perform, I presumptuously told her that her music reminded me of my favorite Mirror albums (the exceptional project of Andrew Chalk and Christoph Heemann). Sarah was not familiar with Mirror, so the compliment was initially lost on her. Years back I was in the same situation when a review compared my music to Andrew Chalk, who was unknown to me at the time. So I felt a kinship in our magnetic drift towards unspoken and clustered beauty.” Let Night Come On Bells End The Day follows the release of her “sound-wheel” LP All My Circles Run, which examines the isolation of different instruments. Let Night Come On, recorded mainly with a Mellotron and electronic organ, feels like a return to the nest. Burrowed in the studio, Davachi was the only performer on this album. She both splays her compositional architecture and re-contextualizes the essence of her early output. She chiseled careful and shadowed hymns; anchors of emotion. Two pillars of this album are “Mordents”, which may hints of her love for progressive rock music — and “Buhrstone”, comparable to a somber funeral march of piano and flutes. These two examine punctuations of early music, gently plucking melodies and movements. The three other compositions are tonal works, blowing slow jets of lapping harmonics. Includes three 9″x9″photo-prints by Davachi; Includes CD; First edition of 600.

File Under: Ambient, Drone
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msuci

Roberto Musci/Giovanni Venosta: Urban & Tribal Portraits (Soave) LP
Peter Sarram on the release: “While a number of the recordings that comprise this particular work have been (relatively) available — through a ReR anthology that also included tracks from the other Musci/Venosta collaboration, Water Messages On Desert Sand (1987) as well as some integrated in the Music From Memory compilation, Tower Of Silence (MFM 014LP, 2016), released under Musci’s name only this is indeed the first time one can listen to this fundamental work as it was meant to be heard. . . . Urban And Tribal Portraits reaffirms the idea of postmodern pastiche as a multimedia multisensory experience and sound as an ecosystem that is both aleatory and concrete, ephemeral and durable. In these binary paradoxes, a radical notion of the nature of collaboration, that is both chance induced and conversely conceptually worked out, is also established. . . . Urban And Tribal Portraits re-politicizes the notion of pastiche, engaging as it does in a kind of eco-practice, turning the process rather than the musical object into the poetic focus of the work. . . . Like much Italian experimental music from that magical decade of the ’80s this is not your dad’s fourth world music, with all of its ambiguous aestheticism of ‘unifying’ some not so well-defined primitivism of ‘world ethnic styles’ with the futuristic sounds of whatever ‘advanced electronic techniques’ were the platter du jour. In this sound the 8-bits of the E-Mu Emax is as primitive as the Jews Harp while the electronically treated Pygmy chants turn out to be as futuristic as the multi-timbral capacities of the OB-8. From the funk ostinatos of ‘El Lamento De Los Ayatollah’ where Venosta showcases his straight piano playing to the rarefied queer guitar arpeggios in ‘Tamatave’, the peaceful ripples in ‘Dialogue Between A Dreamer And Others’, the playfulness of ‘Starfish & Kangaroos’ or the post-punkish This Heat/Cabaret Voltaire aggression in ‘The Fear Of A Soldier’ this is destabilization as praxis, a shifting of the  ground. . . . A DIY bricolage: a de-structuring of everyday sound objects towards new uses fed by local eco-situated experiences, transformative of performance and listening. Surrealist ‘musicking’ indeed.”

File Under: World, Electronic, Ambient, Experimental
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…..new arrivals…..

abate

Maurizio Abate: Standing Waters (Black Sweat) LP
In tomorrow… With Standing Waters Maurizio Abate recovers the discourse started with Loneliness Desire And Revenge but with a different narrative sensitivity. The symbolic air that you breathe suggests a personal and universal experience in which thoughts and perceptions remain as enveloped in an eternal cosmic wheel. It’s a condition that flows sincerely into an emphatic introspection and identification between the stasis of an inner soul and the flowing vitality of stagnant aquatic landscapes. In this direction the music of Abate always condenses multiple ranges of different emotional spectra evoked by profound naturalistic references. The airy openings of the strings, the distant whispers of the harmonica, cascades of phrasings calmer or more torrential can lead into the magnificent climax of nostalgia. The string arrangement for violin and cello by Lucia Gasti introduces in a dimension of idyll, in elegiac passages of touching poetry almost of chamber music but at the same time wet by the pastoral and bucolic moods of autumn landscapes; they are paintings imbued with different flavors and colors that recall the light and the candor of the Venetian tones or the moving paintings full of meaning. In the darkest and saddest moments, the open chords are like suspensions of unresolved questions and torments, but the cathartic finale with a free and minimalist piano prelude to possible future glares, almost alludes to the idea that even where there’s stasis the sun can still shine the hope for the new on the clearing of the pond. There remains the feeling with that stylistic “freedom of expression”, dear to the visionaries Fahey and Basho, but there is also a clear interpretation of the expressive possibility of the lead guitar, absolutely lyrical and contemporary for refinement of the crystalline sound, which places this work in parallel with the basic acoustic tests of others great like Jim O’Rourke, Jack Rose, or James Blackshaw.

File Under: Guitar, Psych, Folk
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arcticArctic Monkeys: Tranquility Base Hotel + Casino (Domino) LP
Arctic Monkeys return with their sixth album, entitled Tranquility Base Hotel & Casino. Produced by longtime collaborator James Ford and frontman Alex Turner, the highly anticipated 11-track effort was recorded in Los Angeles, Paris and London. Their first release since 2013’s massively successful AM finds the band intent on continuing to explore new musical terrain with each album. Tranquility Base Hotel & Casino ups the ante in a big way; it is a bold and brilliant album reflecting Turner’s ever more comprehensive creative vision. LP includes the album on 180 gram heavyweight vinyl housed in a gatefold sleeve; a 16 page booklet; and a download card.

File Under: Indie Rock
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ben

Jorge Ben: Tropical (Oficial Arquivos) LP
In tomorrow… “One of Brazil’s greatest songwriters, Jorge Ben rarely dwelled on any particular musical style, even the ones he helped create. By the mid 1970s, Ben had already innovated several groundbreaking new twists on the classic samba sound, in the process creating many tunes that became epoch-defining hits for South America’s biggest country — not to mention the world at large. For 1977’s Tropical, he made the controversial decision to rework an album’s worth of his most beloved songs in the new, disco and funk influenced Afro-Samba style he was exploring at the time. As a result, classics like ‘Chove Chuva,’ ‘Taj Mahal,’ and ‘Mas Que Nada’ get polished updates, alongside deeper rarities like ‘Georgia’and ‘Jesus de Praga,’ making Tropical a sensual, sultry counterpoint to other Jorge Ben collections.”

File Under: Brasil, Samba
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bodyThe Body: I Have Fought Against It… (Thrill Jockey) LP
With each release, the duo of Lee Buford and Chip King continue to defy the constraints of what it means to be a “heavy” band, seamlessly combining composition or production approaches from hip hop, pop, classical, as well as rock and electronica resulting in a rich and utterly singular sound. On I Have Fought Against It, But I Can’t Any Longer The Body challenged themselves again by turning their compositional approach on its head, choosing to build the record on their own samples rather than recording the basic tracks of drums and guitars and processing those. The results carry the listener towards the brink of emotional and musical extremes. I Have Fought Against It… conjures the sublime from an unexpected and incomparable variety of sounds. The Body are known for their intense, abrasive live shows, whose waves of dissonance create an abiding dread or an overwhelming sense of terror. They create a volume of sound almost unfathomable from a duo and are unaffected by instrument choice: guitar and drums, or keyboard and synthesizers. Inventive producers, the duo expand their recorded sound palate with regular contributions from the likes of Chrissy Wolpert (Assembly of Light Choir), and Ben Eberle (Sandworm), arranged with help of longtime engineers Seth Manchester and Keith Souza (Machines With Magnets). Wolpert’s ethereal calls and Eberle’s vicious growl are augmented by Lingua Ignota’s Kristin Hayter, whose impassioned voice features on the viscerally emotional “Nothing Stirs.” On “Sickly Heart Of Sand,” vocal trade-offs between King and Hayter’s are punctuated with the howls of Uniform’s Michael Berdan. With The Body’s keen sense of balance, the ferociousness of these extreme performances are underpinned by the elegance of string swells and pensive, even melodies from a lone piano. For The Body, any source of inspiration is fair game to achieve their distinct atmosphere of unbearable dread, pain, and sadness. “Partly Alive” places rolling drum figures, commonly found in pop, and transforms them with a backdrop of horns, skittering synthetic hi hats, and pitched feedback. The oppressive groove of “An Urn” pulls beat arrangement and melodic ideas from disparate electronic influences. Their eclectic sampling choices are both musical and literary from singjay star Eek-A-Mouse to a reading of Bohumil Hrabal to the Clarice Lispector quote on the album’s artwork and beyond. The album title, an excerpt of Virginia Woolf’s suicide letter, is an apt moniker for the pervasive themes of loss, desperation and loneliness throughout. Carefully selected samples and literary references bolster the album’s emotional heft. I Have Fought Against It, But I Can’t Any Longer proves how truly adventurous and diverse a creative force The Body has become. The Body continue to push the boundaries and definition of what is heavy music, their ingenuity unparalleled.

File Under: Metal
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boli

Boli Group: NPDS (Posh Isolation) LP
Boli Group is a new ensemble spearheaded by Copenhagen-based composer and producer Asger Hartvig. Responsible for some of the most fearless and intriguing works to come from the city in recent years, Hartvig is as imposing as he is mysterious, and his debut release for Posh Isolation makes no concessions. Hartvig is perhaps best known for his work with the group Synd Og Skam. And though less known, Brynje 1&2 is just as exceptional. Taking both technology and classicism as allegories, each group charts routes in and out of pop music, somehow arriving at an observer’s distance to the distinct stylistic choices in the process. The label Visage has published the best of this, and the logic has certainly been carried into Boli Group LP, the latest offering from Hartvig and his distinguished ensemble of Nina Cristante, Holger Hartvig, Thea Thorborg, and Cæcilie Trier. N.P.D.S. is willingly dramatic, though it never plateaus into melancholia. Hartvig pirouettes at the edge with the sorrowful string arrangements and the pristine timbre of the piano, the immediacy of the acoustics always binding the listener tightly to the risk. Pastoral and meditative, the electronics don’t tamper with the delicate fabric being woven. They always register as supportive and understated. The synthetic hum, occasionally yielding a doleful melody as it does, manages to imbue a naiveté to this contemporary and subtly idiosyncratic chamber music. The album’s secret, barely kept through the minimalism, is its distinct folk noir quality in holding it.

File Under: Experimental, Chamber
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juri

Juri Camisasca: Evoluzione Interiore (Black Sweat) LP
Four long and vaporous unreleased tracks that document the Juri Camisasca’s first mystical afflatus, bringing to light the moments of “collective meditation” of some events in 1978, including the recordings drawn from the exhibition “L’evoluzione interiore dell’Uomo”, which took place at the Villa Reale in Monza. After his participation in the Telaio Magnetico project in 1975, and in parallel to his contribution in works like Franco Battiato’s Juke Box (1978) and Lino Capra Vaccina’s Antico Adagio (1978), and in Raul Lovisoni and Francesco Messina’s Prati Bagnati Del Monte Analogo (1979), a more general syntony of Camisasca for different aspects of Eastern philosophies seemed to conceive his first personal form of music as a “celestial ocean” in which to break the eternal divine love. The mantra nature of deep drones of a natural reverberated harmonium literally introduce you to another level of consciousness; harmonic chants of dhrupad inspiration expanding the ethereal voice in the transcendental plot of all, while Roberto Mazza’s oboe intervenes to paint this perfect osmotic sound echoing motifs of ancient medieval saltarello. For Camisasca, “the vibration of sound is something primordial which contains the mystery of creation”; and in this sense “the musician is a medium through which the Nature is expressed”. This makes Evoluzione Interiore an intense minimalist work where singing generates a universal and archetypical spiral of purity and candor that suggests the Pandit Pran Nath’s lesson as well as dialogues in concept with the mutability flux of seminal works as Terry Riley’s Persian Surgery Dervishes (1972), Peter Michael Hamel’s The Voice of Silence (1973) and Nada (1977), or with research on the overtones as that of Roberto Laneri’s Prima Materia. Includes liner notes with archival photos.

File Under: Experimental, Drone
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caretaker4

The Caretaker: Everywhere at the End of Time Stage 4 (History Always Favours the Winners) LP
In tomorrow… The Caretaker slips beyond recognition in the first “post awareness” stage of Everywhere At The End Of Time. The ability to recall singular memories gives way to confusions and horror. It’s the beginning of an eventual process where all memories begin to become more fluid through entanglements, repetition, and rupture. Though the metaphoric device of worn-down ballroom 78s and Jack Nicholson’s descent into madness in The Shining (1980), The Caretaker connotes the transitory cognitive breakdown of moderate into severe late stage dementia. Memories of the good times are recollected in glitching pyknoleptic flashes as the music struggles to follow consistent lines of thought, instead fluctuating between a fractured mosaic of ideas and elusive emotive gestures, but still occasionally able to gather coherent thoughts. In aesthetic, the sieve-like mind state of Stage 4 vacillates a serene sort of psychedelia with utterly paranoid and petrifying mental subsidence. Smudged traces of sublimated musical hall memories give way to shocking tracts of atonality and discord with runaway rhythmic logic, perpetually tumbling farther into states of mind perhaps best compared with K-Hole-like dimensions or the babble of after-hours psychonautic journeys. The concision of previous stages is here replaced with wandering, side-long tracts. Three of those are titled “Post Awareness Confusions” and correspondingly explore and reflect agitated, irritable mindsets as they navigate an ephemeral, confusing complexity of structures. The other piece is called “Temporary Bliss State” and starkly contrasts the other parts in a coherently lush traverse of ambient crackle and glittering melody… Artwork by Ivan Seal. Mastered and cut by Lupo. Double-LP comes in gatefold sleeve.

File Under: Ambient, Ballroom
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chains

Chaines: The King (Slip) LP
The King is a remarkably absorbing collection of abstract torch songs by Cee Haines, aka Chaines, a Manchester-based artist in possession of a starkly singular sonic language, who has collaborated extensively with the London Contemporary Orchestra and had their work performed at The Roundhouse, Union Chapel, Printworks, and Tate Modern. Leading a thematic expansion of Chaines’s OST (2015), their second solo release yields a phantasmic and richly evocative soundtrack-esque series of works written over the past three years, including exclusive versions of their commissions by the London Contemporary Orchestra and Union Chapel, all serving to frame an intimate yet beautifully elusive portrait of a unique artist coming into their own. In eight parts, Chaines draws a mercurial line that connects the almost bestial intimacy of purring strings and whispered vocals in “For Your Own Good” to something like Scott Walker-invoking-Fantasia in “Eraserhead”, conjuring a mutably surreal and mystic atmosphere that keeps listeners teetering between knife-edge suspense and sublime relief as they scale from delectably detailed avant-garde psychedelia in “Knockturning” to a bout of Grouper-as-spectral-jazz diva styles of Population 5120, and all in a way that makes the exploded hyaline castles in the sky dimensions of Airship seem totally feasible next to the cavernous avant-techno impulses of Carpathia. Never following a linear path, Chaines is as likely to incorporate doom-laced chamber motifs and asymmetric techno rhythms as operatic vocals and microscopic sounds, always with a sensitivity to the metaphysics of space and spirit which coolly sets their work apart. Held up beside Slip’s celebrated recent releases, Chaines find themselves amid exemplary, boundary-morphing company, whose diversity finds a common strength in the will to express something of a pathos beyond easy comprehension, yet which can be felt and understood immediately and instinctively by anyone with an open mind and a thirst for the new. Artwork by Chaines. Mastered by Giuseppe Ielasi.

File Under: Electronic, Experimental
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deuterDeuter: Princess of Dawn (Black Sweat) LP
Private press library recordings of the early ’70s. Together with Florian Fricke and Peter Michael Hamel, Deuter is certainly mainly responsible for the fruitful encounters between European sensibility and Eastern aesthetics in the German music of the 1970s. Soundtrack was originally produced by Kuckuck in 1973 not for an official and public release, but as a “library” recording to be used for films, TV, and radio. As a library recording. it respects the canonical and typological structure of the genre with 26 short sonic fragments, sequences imagined and conceived like fulminating illuminations. There’s still a solid electronic vocation that, however, has put aside the most disruptive effluvia of D (1971) of pure “kraut” ancestry. In fact, the album is more like an ideal passing bridge between some ritual instances of the previous Aum (1972) and the following successful phase of Deuter during the period when he stays in the Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh’s ashram in Poona realizing, in parallel to a renewed inner life, masterpieces like Celebration (1976), Haleakala (1978), Ecstasy (1979), and Silence Is The Answer (1981). Musically speaking, Soundtrack presents itself as a heterogeneous work with nocturnal, cinematic, galactic and atmospheric-environmental implications. Electronics remains the predominant factor but can vary from mantra drones of more ceremonial and meditative “space-relax” tones of some tracks (“Triad”, “Deep Sea”, “Gothic Velvet”, or “Evening”) to the most amused formulations of pulsating analog synths that in the hands of Deuter become “toy-equipment” to modulate and explore (“Desert Rock”, “Synth Effect”, “Flea Dance”, or “Laser”). There is no lack of acoustic moments more ethnically inspired with Arabian and Indian (“Reed”, “Arabia”) or devotionally solar themes (“Tom Bombaddils Dance”), evoking an air of diffuse peace then completely conquered in the beloved India.

File Under: Ambient, New Age, Library
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distant

Distant Animals: Lines (Hallow Ground) LP
Distant Animals is the artistic output of Daniel Alexander Hignell, a researcher and sound, video, and performance artist from England. He has recorded, written, performed, and researched numerous socially-oriented sound works across Europe, often choosing to work with a diverse range of collaborators, including visual artists, choreographers, theologians, lawyers, and political activists. Drawing upon the works of La Monte Young, Morton Feldman, Eleh, and Mauricio Kagel, Lines employs a highly conceptual approach to its genre, incorporating the notion of the drone as both a compositional method, a spiritual approach, and a participatory tool for engaging its audience. The album contains a pack of four postcards, documenting a land-art intervention undertaken during the creation of the score. Included in each pack is an individually hand-stamped and numbered print, created by artist Layla Tully. 180 gram vinyl.

File Under: Ambient, Drone, Minimalism
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dwarfs

Dwarfs of East Agouza: Rats Don’t Eat Synthesizers (Akuphone) LP
Akuphone in collaboration with Annihaya present Rats Don’t Eat Synthesizers, the long-awaited second album by The Dwarfs Of East Agouza. Hailing from the Agouza district of Cairo, Egypt, this brilliant trio consists of Alan Bishop (acoustic bass, alto sax), Maurice Louca (keyboards, drum machine), and Sam Shalabi (electric guitar). Following their acclaimed first album Bes, this new full-length is composed of two hypnotic journeys: “Rats Don’t Eat Synthesizers” and “Ringa Mask Koshary” which were recorded in Cairo in September of 2015. Mesmerizing electric guitar parts, frenetic beats, both supported by the deep sound of Alan’s acoustic bass create a new magical Egyptian soundscape. LP comes in a beautiful hot-foil stamped sleeve that magnifies the red metallic rats and a wonderful printed inner sleeve; Includes download code. 33 RPM. Edition of 1000.

File Under: Jazz, Egypt, Sun City Girls
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emoElectronic Modular Orchestra: s/t (Soave) LP
Electronic Modular Orchestra: from Neil Young to Stravinsky. Curiosity is the element that allowed the birth of this project. Gabriele Bombardini, Nicola Peruch, Matteo Scaioli, and Max Vicinelli are musicians who have decades of experience in all fields of music. The desire to combine seemingly distant sounds such as the use of old analog synthesizers, a pedal steel that recalls the American folk tradition, and the modular synthesis that leads back to the so-called concrete musical research, was the challenge to face. Freedom of expression, contemporary quotations, improvisation, Stravinsky, Bartok, Reich, psychedelic rock, jazz, all that is musical emotion is taken as a stimulus for this research.

File Under: Electronic, Experimental
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floresMiguel Flores: Primitivo (Buh) LP
In tomorrow… Miguel Flores is, alongside musicians such as Arturo Ruiz Del Pozo, Luis David Aguilar, or Manongo Mujica, one of the most important representatives of that period that spans from mid-70s to mid-80s, when experimenting musically in Peru united modern composing techniques of avant-garde music and the search of the sounds of mother land. A drummer turned into a multi instrument player, who began by playing rock from mid ’60s on, with groups such as The Loop’s, Thee Image, and most pointedly with PAX, iconic hard rock band of the ’70s, Miguel Flores tackled Peruvian folk music by 1974 with his group Ave Acustica, which included non-conventional musical techniques into their performances. Those were times when folk music was widely promoted, as a consequence of the policies of Juan Velasco Alvarado’s nationalistic policies. The appearance of the Talleres de la Canción Popular, headed by Celso Garrido Lecca, in 1974, was decisive to brood a new generation of folk and new song groups. In this environment, and after leaving PAX, Miguel Flores goes deep into his interests in folk and sound experiments as well as free jazz, his attempts to fuse what was considered could not be fused, being rejected by all sides equally. Upon his return to Lima, after an intense tour to Japan in 1980, Miguel Flores was commissioned by choreographer Luciana Proaño to write the score for her new contemporary performance Mitos Y Mujeres. Miguel Flores called Corina Bartra, Arturo De La Cruz, Manuel Miranda, and Aberlardo Oquendo to play the music which brought together folklore and psychedelia, free jazz, electronics, tribal music and ashaninka chants. A hypnotic sound stretches a bridge between ancient and avant-garde, the spirit of psychedelic rock, free jazz and pure sound experimentation. The studio recording of what was the score for Mitos Y Mujeres was kept away for more than 30 years. Now finally has its first edition on LP. This LP is part of Buh Records’ Sounds Essentials Collection, curated by Luis Alvarado.

File Under: Experimental, World, Improv

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jelinek

Jan Jelinek & Computer Soup: Improvisations & Edits (Faitiche) LP
Faitiche present the first vinyl issue of Improvisations And Edits, Tokyo 26.09.2001, originally released on CD in 2002 on Soup-Disk. Jan Jelinek and the Japanese trio Computer Soup (Satoru Hori – trumpet; Osamu Okubo – toys and electronics; Kei Ikeda – toys and electronics) present eight tracks, all recorded one afternoon in the trio’s living room in Tokyo. They are excerpts from a joint group improvisation that subsequently underwent rudimentary editing, on which Jelinek and Computer Soup worked separately. Jelinek met the three musicians at his first concert in Japan in 2001, at Tokyo’s Yellow club, where Computer Soup performed as the support act. Delighted by their free improvisation on pocket-sized electronic toys, trumpet, and oscillators, he arranged to meet Hori, Okubo, and Ikeda a few days later for a session at their apartment. The resulting three-hour recording formed the basis for Improvisations And Edits. A few days later, Jelinek returned to Berlin. Over the following months, they separately chose passages from the recording that were then edited and assembled into an album. Formed in Tokyo in 1996 as a quintet (including Shusaku Hariya and Daisuke Oishi), Computer Soup began by performing with acoustic instruments on the streets of Shibuya. Ikeda und Okubo soon switched instruments, and from then on, the group’s minimalistic but densely woven sound was defined by electronic toys, oscillators and Satoru Hori’s trumpet. Includes download code; Edition of 500.

File Under: Electronic
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jelinek1

Jan Jelinek: Zwischen (Faitiche) LP
Faitiche release a short version of the radio play Zwischen (German for “between”). Devised and produced by Jan Jelinek for German public broadcaster SWR2, Zwischen brings together twelve sound poetry collages using interview answers by public figures. Each collage consists of the brief moments between the spoken words: silences, pauses for breath, and hesitations in which the interviewees utter non-semantic sound particles. These voice collages also control a synthesizer, creating electronic sounds that overlay and merge with the voices to make twelve acoustic structures. We all know the speaker’s fate: you falter, you mispronounce, there are breaks, silences, and false starts. This results in delays, a language noise compared by Roland Barthes to the knocks made by a malfunctioning motor. Such gaps can be disconcerting, standing as they do for a failure of the speaker’s rhetorical skills. But what happens when they become a constitutive, poetic factor? Zwischen consists of twelve answers to twelve questions. The answers were all recorded in interview situations. From the speech of the interviewees — all eloquent public figures — the pauses are extracted and edited together. The result is a series of sound collages of silence. But this silence is deceptive, as it is only meaning that falls silent. What remains audible is an archaic body language: modes of breathing, planning phases, seething word particles in search of sense that can break out into onomatopoeic tumult or drift off into sonorous noise. In a further step, each of the twelve collages controls a modular synthesizer via its amplitude and frequency. Supposedly defective speech acts conduct synthetic sounds and the speakers regain their composure — not via the spoken word, but through sound. The opening questions in the various interviews are answered by: Alice Schwarzer, John Cage, Hubert Fichte, Slavoj Zizek, Joseph Beuys, Lady Gaga, Ernst Jandl, Karlheinz Stockhausen, Marcel Duchamp, Friederike Mayröcker, Yoko Ono, and Max Ernst. Jelinek extends his thanks to Frank Halbig and SWR2. Includes download code; Edition of 500.

File Under: Electronic
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ragnar

Ragnar Johnson: Crying Bamboos (Idealogic Organ) LP
In tomorrow… Crying Bamboos is a translation of the pidgin description of the sound of sacred flutes: “Mambu i cry, i cry, i cry”. Sacred flutes are blown to make the cries of spirits by adult men in the Madang region of Papua New Guinea. Pairs of long bamboo male and female flutes are played for ceremonies in the coastal villages near the Ramu River. There are seven male initiation flute cries from Bosmun, four flute cries from Bak: Borai with occasional single garamut percussion and two flute cries from Kaean, one with vocals and hand drums. The flute players were of the last generation to have learned this skill during a complete cycle of male initiation. These previously unreleased recordings were made by Ragnar Johnson in 1979. Notes by Ragnar Johnson and Jessica Mayer; Photographs by Ragnar Johnson. Tape to digital transfer and mastering by Dave Hunt at Dave Hunt Audio, London; Cut by Rashad Becker at Dubplates and Mastering, Berlin.

File Under: World, Field Recordings
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ken

Sugai Ken: Tele-n-Tech-Da (Discrepant) LP
Japanese artist Sugai Ken presents a kaleidoscopic radio play inspired by the traditional Japanese art of Mingei. In Sugai Ken’s own words: “In recent years I have been researching old Japanese culture and customs in order to deepen my musical production. I am still excited to find that there are many untouched roots yet to be discovered which only motivates me to pursuit my research further. As I dig deeper, I’m always struck with the general idea that ‘everything has its own ground’, otherwise known as rigid ideas and concepts. Indeed, it is important to have a clear ground to explore things from. Especially as our times are overloaded with too much information, things which are spoon fed to us will always be short lived, so for me it becomes a case of those rigid ideas becoming less flexible. One of the many benefits of computer music is being able to separate it from history/traditions and allowing you to simply enjoy mixing sounds and concepts, regardless of its original meaning. By being free from ‘having to’ make sense we can make creation much more enjoyable. When I made this album I put my priority in freedom, rather than being stuck with those rigid ideas and concepts. This way I could really enjoy and get deep into the ‘mixology’ of it all. Like my other works, Japanese is always a fundamental motif and I envision it like an imaginary radio drama by adding spontaneous dialogs throughout. I will be happy if listeners pay attention to these (and other) details and enjoy listening to my work.” Artwork by Evan Crankshaw. Mastered and cut by Rashad Becker. Edition of 500.

File Under: Electronic
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C0261EP_PROD

Will Long/DJ Sprinkles: Purple/Blue (Comatonse) 2LP
We live in an era when “change” is a soundbite to sell more of the same old ideas, and “revolution” has more to do with social trends than social change. Will Long’s deep house debut on Terre Thaemlitz’s Comatonse Recordings examines that pack of lies dubbed “change” from the sweaty dancefloor, sounding the aftermath of failure around attempts at equality in “progressive” societies. Made with a simple setup of rhythm composer percussion, polyphonic synth chords, and rack sampler vocals, these tracks have a minimal rawness that contends we’ve been wrong the whole time about how far the US — and the world — has come. Although they are sonically unlike anything Long has produced as Celer or his other aliases for minimal and ambient experimental audio, they share a stripped-yet-full sound that reacts against overproduction — within the dance music industry, and societies at large. DJ Sprinkles’ overdubbed contributions quite literally and psycho-acoustically resonate that intention, tactfully rending a farther, lush physicality and soulfulness through deftly applied daubs of glutinous sub-bass pressure, airy strings, and subtly shimmering FX, really bringing Long’s tracks to life in a whole other dimension; and via disciplined, stripped-down, full-bodied production values that rank as perhaps the deepest productions yet in the Sprinkles’ canon. They could be taken as a call for humbleness and meditative efficiency over cliched buildups and preening vanities, perhaps a comment on “deep” house as the equivalent of a fresh tattoo or sweatshop t-shirt slogan. Because, you know, it really does stand for a lot more. Tsuji Aiko has provided illustrations of the activists sampled featured on the front and back covers. Mastered by Terre Thaemlitz, cut by Dubplates & Mastering.

File Under: House, Electronic
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C0262EP_PROD

Will Long/DJ Sprinkles: Mint/Clay (Comatonse) LP
You may still be dazed from the first volume (C 026-1EP), but Will Long and DJ Sprinkles have already cued up their second session, with Mint / Clay landing on Terre Thaemlitz’s Comatonse Recordings. The format and aesthetic remains the same as Purple / Blue, namely two raw pieces by Will Long, backed with overdubs by Sprinkles, amounting to the deepest house this side of Larry Heard’s nuclear love bunker, all subtly executed and held up as a comparison to the aesthetics and intentions (or, ironically, the excess and lack of) of that sound in relief of current, conceptually-detached takes on the original, queer NYC deep house sound which Sprinkles was instrumental in shaping as a downtown DJ during that formative era. Again, Will Long, who’s best known for his experimental ambient work as Celer, proves that it ain’t what you’ve got but what you know and can do with it that matters. “Under-Currents” places sparing samples of T.R.M. Howard — a mentor of Jesse Jackson and founder of Mississippi’s Regional Council of Negro Leadership — amidst a dream sequence of carbonated hi-hats and lingering chords urged by a plump bass drum, whilst “Get In & Stay In” nods to civil right activist and current Georgia congressional representative John Lewis in a lush haze of crepuscular chromatics and loping swing. DJ Sprinkles goes on to contribute another pair of incredible overdubs, lending Long’s minimal elements a richer, fleshlier feel, whether with additional breakbeats, or nimbly lowering the bass and layering up spirited flutes and Rhodes. Quite crucially, the concept never gets in the way of the music, perfectly demonstrating the symbiotic nature of the music and politics in the way they most likely intended, especially for the DJs, dancers, and promoters who act as gatekeepers for this music. Tsuji Aiko has provided illustrations of the activists sampled featured on the front and back covers. Mastered by Terre Thaemlitz, cut by Dubplates & Mastering.

File Under: House, Electronic
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C0263EP_PROD

Will Long/DJ Sprinkles: Yellow/ Ivory/ Rust (Comatonse) 3LP
Will Long X DJ Sprinkles’ journey to the heart of deep house culminates in the third and final volume in a series of three, offering the broadest yet most subtle, spine-tingling session of the lot, presenting the former’s raw and ‘floor-ready originals backed by the latter’s inimitably sumptuous overdubs. Conceptually rooted in the queer, black politics of NYC’s late ’80s and early ’90s house scene — where Terre Thaemlitz cut her teeth as DJ Sprinkles — the series can be viewed as a vital reminder of that scene’s original values and sense of social democracy, especially when contrasted with the glut of contemporary, commodified representations of that music which sorely miss the mark, or weren’t even aware of the scene’s provenance to begin with. Make no mistake, though; this is no lecture or snub at younger producers making deep house. Rather, it is evidence of the original form’s latent potential to still generate rare, precious feelings which have been lost or glossed over with subsequent, detached and over-produced translations of its original syntax and intent. “Deep” is the key word here on many levels, from their poignant use of historical samples by civil rights pioneers Bayard Rustin, Jesse Jackson, and Kathleen Cleaver, to the unfiltered innocence of Will Long’s productions and Sprinkles’ corresponding, pensile overdubs, which make utterly incredible use of the frequency spectrum to reveal acres of space in the upper registers and, on the other hand, an honestly breathtaking application of layered sub-bass tones that are just impossible to describe. This one’s a little bit special… Mastered by Terre Thaemlitz, cut by Dubplates & Mastering.

File Under: House, Electronic
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malone

Kali Malone: Cast of Mind (Hallow Ground) LP
Kali Malone’s sophomore LP Cast of Mind investigates the use of harmony as a force of psychological impact through the exclusive use of the Buchla 200 synthesizer in combination with acoustic woodwind and brass instruments. The record begins as a cascade of battle calls from the wind instruments that shift between triumphant and anguished howls. While the other pieces pull from the septimal harmonic framework of the title track, they extract a more confined palette to depict their sonic identities indicated by the song titles. “Bondage To Formula” weaves synthesis, trombone, and bass clarinet in a delicate pattern, conjuring an ambiguous assimilation of the acoustic and synthetic. Dominated by columns of sawtooth waveforms, “Arched In Hysteria” unravels as a sharp and sober harmony perched on the border of violence, ringing in paranoia amongst a foundation of low beating oscillators. The record concludes in the rapture of “Empty The Belief”, swollen with undulating bassoon striving to intonate to the towering stability of machine-generated harmony. 180 gram vinyl.

File Under: Ambient, Drone
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blackpantheOST: Black Panther (Interscope) LP
In tomorrow… Marvel Studios’ Black Panther follows T’Challa who, after the death of his father, the King of Wakanda, returns home to the isolated, technologically advanced African nation to succeed to the throne and take his rightful place as king. But when a powerful old enemy reappears, T’Challa’s mettle as king – and Black Panther  – is tested when he is drawn into a formidable conflict that puts the fate of Wakanda and the entire world at risk. Faced with treachery and danger, the young king must rally his allies and release the full power of Black Panther to defeat his foes and secure the safety of his people and their way of life. Kendrick Lamar curated and produced the soundtrack album to Black Panther along with Anthony ‘Top Dawg’ Tiffith. In addition to the previously released “All the Stars” and “King’s Dead,” Black Panther The Album: Music From and Inspired By includes three more new songs with Lamar’s involvement: “Black Panther,” “Big Shot” (with Travis Scott), and “Pray For Me” (with The Weeknd). Other notable contributors include SZA, James Blake, Ab-Soul, Anderson .Paak, Vince Staples, Swae Lee, Schoolboy Q, 2 Chainz, Khalid, Future, Zacari and Mozzy among others. “Marvel Studios’ Black Panther is amazing, from its cast to its director,” Kendrick Lamar said. “The magnitude of this film showcases a great marriage of art and culture. I’m truly honored to contribute my knowledge of producing sound and writing music alongside [director] Ryan [Coogler] and Marvel’s vision.”

File Under: Hip Hop, OST
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palmPalm Unit: Hommage a Jef Gilson (Super Sonic Jazz) LP
Back in the day, French pianist, composer and all-round jazz superstar Jean-François Quiévreux, aka Jef Gilson, was up there alongside the likes of peers John Coltrane, Oscar Peterson, and Sun Ra. In a fitting homage to the decades-worth of sublime music, and his sad passing away in 2012, French quarter Palm Unit present a lively, honest tribute, upbeat, and contemporary re-interpretative vision of his legacy. Gilson has been noted for changing the face of bebop with free-jazz and Afro. Along the way, his big band featured the likes of Lloyd Miler, Bill Coleman, Michel Portal, and others. With his own recording studio and label Palm Records, Gilson released music from greats including Byard Lancaster, David S. Ware, François Jeanneau, and more. He also helped embed a more ethno style to the world of jazz, inspired by his visits to Madagascar, which resulted in the famous Malagasy jazz albums. Palm Unit, a wildly eclectic super-group of jazz greats, includes uKanDanZ’s saxophonist Lionel Martin, keyboardist Fred Escoffier from Le Sacre du Tympan, drummer Philippe ‘Pipon’ Garcia whose mostly known from his worth with the Erik Truffaz Quartet, and special guest Del Rabenja — who played alongside Gilson in Malagasy — on the Madagascar valiha harp. Palm Unit plays Gilson’s repertoire without any a priori, in a totally complex-free manner, reinventing it whilst preserving its original essence. The keyboards sound almost psychedelic (and often not that far from the style of Eddy Louiss on Jef Gilson’s ’60s albums), the sax scratches, mews, and wails, whilst the drums make the whole thing swing. Even Del Rabenja was surprised to rediscover the songs still sounding so modern, decades after they were created.

File Under: Jazz
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reuben

Reuben & The Dark: Arms of a Dream (Arts & Crafts) LP
In tomorrow… Reuben and the Dark’s sophomore album, Arms of a Dream, features the spirited folk outfit’s most vivid and enveloping music to date. Led by songwriter and vocalist Reuben Bullock, the album’s eleven songs explore the inversion of imagination and reality in the light of dreams. This is Reuben and the Dark at its most empowered, both heartened and broken-hearted, tracking a sound as momentous as the determination within. Produced by Stephen “Koz” Kozmeniuk, Adrianne “AG” Gonzalez and Graham Lessard, and mixed by Matty Green, Arms of a Dream pushes powerful imagery and lush sonic detail to the forefront. Where Funeral Sky, their stunning 2014 debut, lavished in low fidelity, the new album is a high definition dream.

File Under: Indie Rock
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ruizArturo Ruiz Del Pozo: Native Compositions (Buh) LP
In tomorrow… By the end of the 1970s, a new generation of musicians who brought together ancestral and forefront, became visible in Lima as they searched for native sounds and the new tools of technology. Amongst them, we find Arturo Ruiz Del Pozo, composer who studied with Edgar Valcárcel. After studying at the National Conservatory in Lima he traveled to London in 1976 to register himself at the Royal College of Music where he took a master’s degree in electronic composition. Ruiz Del Pozo had left Lima with a bag full of Peruvian native instruments with the idea of utilizing them in his future compositions. In London he was taught by Lawrence Casserly, one the prominent figures of Britain’s electro acoustic composition; a musician who was fascinated by the interaction of instruments and electronic media way back from the times of his fundamental audiovisual experimentation group Hydra. Ruiz del Pozo utilized a series of concrete music resources learnt from Casserly. Based on sounds that came from native instruments and diverse manipulations to which these sounds were subject of, he obtained textures and sonorities, which, at the same time they invoked rituals, they opened a new field of experimentation; a collage of sounds of Andean reminiscence, echoes and abstractions, which will entrance you an unprecedented sound universe. These recordings were named Native Compositions (Composiciones Nativas) and they were released in a cassette tape format in 1984 by the author himself. More than 30 years later Buh Records rescued these recordings to inaugurate its Essential Sounds (Sonidos Esenciales) collection, dedicated to publishing strange and fascinating artifacts of Peruvian experimental music of this period, in a CD edition (2015), which was quickly sold out. Now the label presents its first release on vinyl.

File Under: Electronic, Musique Concrete
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seacakeSea & Cake: Any Day (Thrill Jockey) LP
The Sea And Cake deliver a refreshingly intimate collection of elegantly arranged, singular pop songs. For over two decades and 11 albums, The Sea And Cake have honed a sound all their own, comprised of delicate, intertwining guitar patterns, syncopated rhythms, and airy melodies. Masters of subtlety, their compositions have continually evolved – through minute alterations in texture, unusual approaches to lyrics, and creative production choices. Any Day is testament to The Sea And Cake’s artistry, song craft, and utterly unique sound. The results are intimate songs that speak to the searcher in all of us. Through shifting instrumentation and sonic exploration, the band invites you into a world that is both familiar and unexpected. Written and recorded following the departure of bassist Eric Claridge, Any Day is The Sea And Cake’s first album recorded as the trio of Sam Prekop, Archer Prewitt, and John McEntire. The compositions throughout Any Day, while intricate as ever, rarely employ synthesizers; opting instead for the more organic sounds of stacked guitars and organs. The band were joined on the title track by Paul Von Mertens (a frequent collaborator with Brian Wilson) on flute and clarinet; and Nick Macri on double bass. Prekop delivers some of the most vocal-centric songs in the band’s catalog. His words are chosen and placed for their sound and cumulative meaning. This poetic, painterly approach invites a myriad of lyrical interpretations. One can derive varied personal meanings from each song. The heart of the album’s instrumentation is Prewitt’s intriguing choice of guitar effects, sparingly used to enhance his counter melodies. The combinations create a wealth of textures from surprisingly few instruments. From the distant coos of “Starling” to string like swells of “Into Rain,” Prewitt’s contributions are potent. McEntire’s deft hands behind the drums, bass, and mixing board enliven the album’s minimal approach with a nimble shimmer just as exquisite as the more densely layered earlier albums. Any Day captures The Sea And Cake’s distinctive aural alchemy, melding longing melancholy with hopeful excitement. In other hands the combination seems impossible, but for The Sea And Cake, it’s effortless.

File Under: Indie Rock
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soulafricaHal Singer/Jef Gilson: Soul of Africa (Super Sonic Jazz) LP
Super-Sonic Jazz present a reissue of Hal Singer and Jef Gilson’s Soul Of Africa, originally released in 1974. Considered one of the most important Afro-Parisian jazz records of the ’70s, Soul Of Africa sees Texas tenor sax giant Hal Singer team up with French pianist Jef Gilson, and his Afrocentric, big jazz band. Originally released in 1974 on legendary French imprint French Le Chant Du Monde, and reissued in 2008 on Dutch imprint Kindred Spirits, Super-Sonic Jazz Records provides yet another opportunity to get ahold of this driving, testament to spiritual, ethno-jazz. Full of rhythmic modal jazz, Soul Of Africa plays off the talents of Singer and Gilson with great panache, all the while supported by the sublime percussive talents of Gilson’s finely directed band. During the ’60s, Gilson was equal to the likes of Miles Davis, and was responsible for unearthing the talent Henri Texier, one of jazz’s unrivaled, brilliant bass players. His music spanned various modes of jazz, and was recognized primarily for his Malagasy works, inspired by his trips to Madagascar. Contemporary music fans will be familiar with his work, after a recent Four Tet project sampled, remixed, and compiled a selection of his work. Hal “Cornbread” Singer who, in his long career, played alongside Duke Ellington, Roy Eldridge, Billie Holiday, and far more, was a Mercury Records’ legend whose work with rhythm and blues, and jazz is unparalleled. Originally reissued by Dutchman Kees Heus, aka KC The Funkaholic, on his soulful, and eclectic imprint Kindred Spirits, this is another chance to get ahold of the classic release through his latest adventure, Super-Sonic Jazz. Running a parallel event at Amsterdam’s Paradiso club, Super-Sonic Jazz sets out to push the boundaries of music, through bringing together eclectic, and global rhythmic luminaries, with more contemporary, genre-agnostic musical forms. Comes in a heavyweight tip-on sleeve.

File Under: Jazz
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CREP054LP_CUTasos Stamou: Musique Con Crete (Discrepant) LP
Starting with an artist residency Tasos Stamou visited the Greek island over the course of three summers, collecting field recordings, performing with local musicians, producing electronic compositions and gathering old records and tapes of traditional music of the region. The project resulted in the assembling of a unique sound collage which reflects his personal experience as a music visitor to this part of the Mediterranean. Tasos Stamou is an electroacoustic music composer, performer, alternative music technologist, and tutor. During a decade of sound performances and recordings Tasos Stamou developed a unique style of live electroacoustic composition. Long and continuous pieces are created live using a “portable electroacoustic music studio”. His gear consists of acoustic (prepared strings, reeds, objects) and electronic instruments (handmade electronics, modular synthesizer systems soft synths). Based on sustained tonal textures and free improvised instrumental solos, his live compositions create a particular and unique atmosphere of ritual noise. Artwork by Tasos Stamou. Mastered by Rashad Becker. Edition of 300.

File Under: Electronic, Folk
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staplesVince Staples: Big Fish Theory (Def Jam) LP
In tomorrow… Vince Staples’ second studio album Big Fish Theory limited to 1,000 2-disc printed vinyl copies. With bass-heavy, Detroit techno-inspired production from Sophie, Justin Vernon, Flume, GTA + more and guest vocals from Kilo Kish, Kendrick Lamar, Juicy J, Ty Dolla Sign, Damon Albarn, Ray J + ASAP Rocky, Big Fish Theory features the singles BagBak, Big Fish + Rain Come Down. 2017, Def Jam.

File Under: Hip Hop
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sterile

Sterile Hand: s/t (Ecstatic) LP
Juan Mendez, aka Silent Servant, finds his ideal EBM vocal foil in Ori Ofir under their Sterile Hand moniker. The duo’s first vinyl round for Not Waving’s Ecstatic label is a dark and sleazy run of deviant industrial techno and pugilistic EBM cuts made over the last year. Following Silent Servant’s killer split 12″ with Not Waving and Pye Corner Audio in 2017, and two fierce 12″s with Marcel Dettmann and Phase Fatale in 2018, the L.A.-based artist behind Sandwell District and Jealous God is at the apex of his game right now, combining EBM and techno in faithful but inventive new ways. If there was anything previously missing from Silent Servant’s music, it’s only become apparent through the seamless and natural incorporation of Ori Ofir’s classic-styled but unique vocals. The two L.A.-based artists push each other down tightening alleys of EBM and industrial techno, with Ofir’s stark, blunted declamations haunting and highlighting the most fetid corners of Mendez’s rolled-steel productions.  It’s a style that works to cryptic, head-turning effect in the Voigt Kampff-like probe of “Personality Test”, then with increasing dancefloor force in the Nitzer Ebb-esquer flow of “The Hunter” and the punishing, gnashing bite of “Security”, whereas “Listen For Water” and the creeping figures of “Untitled” explore the esoteric powers and parameters of Sterile Hand in mesmerising psychoactive detail.

File Under: Electronic
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mississippi-tembo-chrisy-zebby-my-ancestors-lpChrissy Zebby Tembo & Ngozi Family: My Ancestors (Mississippi) LP
In tomorrow… “It could be argued that this is one of the greatest rock n’ roll records of all time! Straight from Zambia, we have My Ancestors. A tough rock and roll masterpiece like no other. Over-ridden fuzz guitars, pop melodies and even a Black Sabbathesque sounding song. Comes in an old school ‘tip on’ cover. Must be heard to be believed.”

File Under: Zamrock, Psych
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youn

Young Echo: s/t (Young Echo) LP
“Spread across two 180g discs, spanning 24 cuts and served in a gatefold sleeve designed by members and affiliates, the Young Echo LP is a capsule intended for cementation through time. It’s been almost five years since their last album. As a group, extended radio submissions, prolonged studio sessions and notorious club nights make up the cogs of time. Over the course of these years, the network has grown continually, both as one, and with singular, multi-directional paths from each of the 11 artists that make up the Young Echo collective, counting Jabu, Vessel, Kahn, Neek, Ishan Sound, Ossia, Manonmars, Bogues, Rider Shafique, Chester Giles and Jasmine towards the crew, with projects such as Bandulu, FuckPunk, O$VMV$M, Gorgon Sound and ASDA adding to the table in their individual ways. However, this record aims not to be judged on any single producer or vocalist. It is most effective as a whole, simply titled Young Echo. Of course each of the artists has an important part to play, but it is very much about the act of balance, accepting individualism to form a greater whole. A good example is the welcome addition of new energy coming from Jasmine (1/3 of Jabu) who injects endless space with her vocals, perfectly answered by the cool-killin’ wordplay of Manonmars — who makes his long awaited debut here — sharing stage with the immediate poetry of ASDA’s very own Chester Giles, along the mighty sound of Rider Shafique, and Bogues’ versatile style that can flit between rap & song within seconds. Five very different vocalists that could’ve tried to find a compromise, but instead choose to connect in different ways, finding their niche in the equal range of rhythms and sounds that sprawl in this shared space, the juxtaposition. Detuned soundsystem stylings, love songs swaying in hacked up ambience, skeletal dancehall, microphone technique, dread electronics, outsider pop, this record manifests the outcome of the shapeshifting anarchy which rears its head when no one idea can rule, embracing the diversities when one path must be made up of many.”

File Under: Electronic, Outsider, Experimental
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dutch waveVarious: Dutch Wave (Onderstroom) LP
The first chapter of Onderstroom digging into the history of Dutch minimal synth and wave. Who needs a big, expensive recording studio with all those fancy high-tech machines that only make your weary head spin when you can do it all by yourself at home in your (teenage) bedroom? Way back in the early eighties all you really needed was an idea, quite a bit of guts and some rudimentary equipment. You could basically do whatever you wanted. The means were limited, yet the sky was unbounded. It was the time of the Cold War nuclear threat, social unrest and mass unemployment but at the same time it was an era of infinite possibilities. The future was just around the corner. A lot of music that was being produced sounded just like that: a brave new world of sound and rhythm. Music was simply put on cheap cassettes, easily duplicated, and swiftly distributed in limited quantities into the big world outside. Tracks recorded in Amsterdam, Arnhem of Heiloo ended up in unimaginable destinations such as Brisbane or Buenos Aires. Prolific international underground scenes were informed of this new wave of Dutch electronic artists by means of word of mouth, fanzines, devoted underground tape traders, and sometimes that tiny bit of luck. As their predecessors of the (in)famous Dutch East-India Company (now cult) acts such as The Actor, Ende Shneafliet, Das Ding, Störung, S.M. Nurse, Nine Circles, Beatnik Love Affair, and Van Kaye + Ignit all explored their own paths. Some went straight into oblivion, others had a brief taste of modest upper-ground success. Mind: the names presented here are but the proverbial tip of the iceberg. Some of these early tapes became much sought-after collectors’ items; others gathered dust. The rest, well, is history. Now, decades upon decades later, Onderstroom digs again in history and surfaces with a selection of tracks that illustrate the rich past of electronic Holland. Call it minimal wave, synth-pop, or experimental electronics. Onderstroom call it the real Dutch treat. Features Nine Circles, Beatnik Love Affair, The Actor, Störung, Van Kaye + Ignit, S.M. Nurse, Ende Shneafliet, and Das Ding. Comes in a gatefold sleeve with metallic finishing; 180 gram vinyl.

File Under: Electronic, Minimal

tooslowVarious: Too Slow to Disco Brasil (How Do You Are) LP
In tomorrow… Too Slow to Disco take a dive into an often-overlooked side of Brazilian music: Brazilian soul, funk and AOR. The compiler of this Too Slow to Disco release, a giant of musical endeavor, is the young nephew of Brazil’s legendary soul icon Tim Maia, the “Colossus of Rio”, as he’s known: Ed Motta. At the end of the 1980s, Ed Motta burst upon the music scene as a major singer and one of the writers and producers in the band Conexão Japeri. He’s now fifteen albums into a career that hops from genre to genre, perhaps one of the savviest music makers and curators out there. He is a refined practitioner of jazz, funk, soul, AOR, and much else besides, having worked with everyone from Gilles Peterson to Roy Ayers, 4Hero, Seu Jorge, Patrice Rushen, Greg Phillinganes, Bo Diddley, Incognito, Ryuichi Sakamoto, and many other insanely talented musos. In this collector’s compilation, you’re coming on a kind of expert guided time travel mission — just picture yourself following Ed’s fingers as they trace along the sleeves in his massive library-sized vinyl vault. You’ll dart back through over two decades of music making, dancing in one style then the next from soul to funk to AOR, you’ll feel the air coming out of the horn section right the way through, and a mixologist’s golden touch tying everything together. The artists Ed has play-listed for you include über-obscure figures like Carlos Bivar or Gelson Oliveira & Luiz Ewerling — both of whose songs here derive from privately pressed albums — so rare they’re not even listed on Discogs! He’s also gathered together a real pantheon of Brazilian musical heroes like Rita Lee (who was part of Os Mutantes), Cassiano (one of the founders of Bossa Trio and Os Diagonais), and million sellers like Roupa Nova, lovingly referred to as “the Brazilian Toto”. And as ever with the Too Slow to Disco series, the artists might be new to you, but they’re always bringing a killer tune. Also features Filó Machado, Sandra De Sá, Altay Veloso, Junior Mendes, Don Beto, Lucia Turnbull, Guilherme Arantes, Biafra, Santa Cruz, Jane Duboc, Carlinhos e Soninha Queiroz, Zeca Do Trombone, Kiko Zambianchi, and Brylho.

File Under: Disco, Brasil, Slow Jamz

…..Restocks…..

Black Keys: El Camino (Nonesuch) LP
Black Keys: Attack & Release (Nonesuch) LP
Can: Tago Mago (Spoon) LP
Can: Soundtracks (Spoon) LP
Don Cherry: Complete Communion (Blue Note) LP
Elg: Vu Du Dome (Gravitas) LP
Brian Eno: Another Green World (Universal) LP
Grant Green: Idle Moments (Blue Note) LP
Johann Johannsson: Orphee (Deutsch Grammophon) LP
Kendrick Lamar: Damn (Aftermath) LP
Laraaji: Ambient 3 (Glitterbeat) LP
R.E.M.: Automatic For the People (Universal) LP
Andy Shauf: The Party (Arts & Crafts) LP
Horace Silver: Song For My Father (Blue Note) LP
Horace Silver: Cape Verdean Blues (Blue Note) LP
Soundgarden: Badmotorfinger (Universal) LP
Midori Takada: Through the Looking Glass (WRWTFWW) LP
Temple of the Dog: s/t (Universal) LP
Neil Young: Harvest (Reprise) LP
Various: Shaolin Soul 1 (Because) LP

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…..news letter #795 – jooooon…..

Well, only slightly more stuff in this week than last week. But I can tell you, there’s a lot on the way for next week so, there’s that. There’s also a lot of really great used stuff hitting the bins this week. Come on down for a dig….

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…..pick of the week…..

Oxbow-Thin-Black-Duke-1487864449-640x640

Oxbow: Thin Black Duke (Hydrahead) LP
First studio album in over 10 years! Over the 30 years of Oxbow’s operations, no one has come comfortably close to classifying the Bay Area group. This could arguably be the result of Oxbow’s ongoing evolution, but accurately describing any particular phase of the groups’ seven-album career is no easier than describing the broader metamorphic arc of their creative path. This is especially true with their seventh album Thin Black Duke , where Oxbow’s elusive brand of harmonic unrest has absorbed the ornate and ostentatious palate of baroque pop into their sound, pushing their polarized dynamics into a scope that spans between sublime and completely unnerving. This is new musical territory for all parties involved. The album was engineered and co-produced by Joe Chiccarelli (Beck, My Morning Jacket, Etta james, etc).

File Under: Metal
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…..new arrivals…..

buffalo

Buffalo Tom: Let Me Come Over (Beggars) LP
Buffalo Tom (Bill Janovitz, Chris Colbourn and Tom Maginnis) formed at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst in 1984 – a breeding ground of post punk guitar bands like Dinosaur Jr. and Pixies. They thrived on college radio in the late 1980’s and toured extensively in Europe, the US, Australia and Japan. In 1992 the band recorded their third album Let Me Come Over with a varied group of songs they had been developing at home and on the road – mixing their live power trio sound with some more acoustic based guitar ballads. The album’s single “Taillights Fade” would become their signature song. 2017 marks the 25th anniversary of this album, and to celebrate, Beggars Banquet will reissue it together with a live album – in fact the first ever live release from Buffalo Tom. The show was recorded in early 1992 just prior to the release of Let Me Come Over at U.L.U. which stood for University Of London Union (and is now known as Student Central). The band mixed the live album at Q Division in Boston, and it was mastered at Abbey Road. On its first two albums, Buffalo Tom constructed towering guitar-scapes and mastered a naturalistic version of quiet-to-loud dynamics. So, for its third, we found Buffalo Tom shedding a bit, but not all of the skin it had worn and emerging with its charms more front and center. Let Me Come Over is the sound of the trio exiting the insular underground for the wide world of “alternative” rock – -but more or less bringing its best moves along with it, too. Previously loosely linked with fellow travelers Dinosaur Jr. and Uncle Tupelo via a similar three-piece format, stunning depth of songwriting and association with Boston’s Fort Apache Studios – it’s not hard to imagine Buffalo Tom wanted to stake a claim stylistically. Yet, LMCO never feels like a break with the past, it’s a transition. Inside that abstruse cover are undeniably magnificent tunes. “Staples” is emblematic of a band in flux with a grungy lyrical conceit rendered with hi-fi guitar squalls. It’s the first single “Taillights Fade,” however, where the band appears to find a new comfort zone, at an unhurried speed where Janovitz’s storytelling and car crash metaphors stand the best chance of making an impression. It plays with quiet-to-loud dynamics, and as for emotional expression, it swings for the bleachers – and a place on alternative rock radio. “Mineral” jangles in a similar vein and makes grand gestures. “Darl” and “Larry” are solid but disparate cuts. Colbourn’s “Darl” feels a bit like an outlier with its thrashy feel – it sounds better louder. “Larry” has a sweetness to it that’s augmented by its busker’s strumming. Released as a second single, “Velvet Roof” had given us a taste of what was newly possible, a hook-heavy stomper with a densely woven rhythm matched by tight lyric writing – each piece expertly crafted to go into the next, no frayed ends here – and a snazzy mix by Ron Saint Germain, a pro who would later bring out the best in Soundgarden. A wailing harmonica solo gives it all a swagger that’s kind of new for the band. “Stymied” summons the emotional intensity of Birdbrain – it’s probably the album’s darkest moment. Somehow both life-affirming and wistful “Porchlight” contrasts with the way “Saving Grace” blazes through the barroom like a ‘Mats tribute. There’s no filler to be found here. “Frozen Lake” sees the band caressing acoustic guitars in comedown mode. Let Me Come Over is kind of a short story collection with equal parts thunder and intimacy, hills and valleys, last night’s mistakes and tomorrow’s contrition. Ultimately, it’s possibility, a sense of ‘hey, this just might work’ that makes it such a deep spin 25 years later. Let Me Come Over triumphs.

File Under: Indie Rock
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crimp

Crimpshrine: Duct Tape Soup (Numero) LP
Before Green Day, Operation Ivy, and Lookout Records put the East Bay’s burgeoning punk scene on the map, a trio of Berkeley kids were reinventing the genre with music that was melodic but full of feedback, and a singer who sounded like he gargled glass. Crimpshrine’s debut EP was Lookout’s fourth release, followed by an album, a second EP, and a slew of split singles and compilation tracks before the band imploded in 1989 after a ridiculous two-and-a-half-month tour in a Ford Pinto hatchback. Formed around teenage binary stars Jeff Ott and Aaron Cometbus, Crimpshrine went through a series of lineups in their four-year run, utilizing future Tilt and Go Sailor bassists Pete Rypins and Paul Curran, and briefly including second guitarist Idon Bryant. Not overtly political, their fiery brand of introspective punk touched on homelessness, teenage pregnancy, drug use, friendship, isolation, and a grimy sort of romance. Duct Tape Soup is their Lookout-rejected 1988 debut LP that was parsed out to various compilations and split 7″s before being recompiled for Larry Livermore’s punk institution in 1992. After Lookout’s unfortunate demise at the turn of the century, the album went out of print. In cooperation with the band, Numero has remastered the recordings and freshened up the accompanying booklet to make the perfect legacy edition of this ’80s punk classic.

File Under: Punk
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crim

Crimpshrine: The Sound of a New World Being Born (Numero) LP
Before Green Day, Operation Ivy, and Lookout Records put the East Bay’s burgeoning punk scene on the map, a trio of Berkeley kids were reinventing the genre with music that was melodic but full of feedback, and a singer who sounded like he gargled glass. Crimpshrine’s debut EP was Lookout’s fourth release, followed by an album, a second EP, and a slew of split singles and compilation tracks before the band imploded in 1989 after a ridiculous two-and-a-half-month tour in a Ford Pinto hatchback. Formed around teenage binary stars Jeff Ott and Aaron Cometbus, Crimpshrine went through a series of lineups in their four-year run, utilizing future Tilt and Go Sailor bassists Pete Rypins and Paul Curran, and briefly including second guitarist Idon Bryant. Not overtly political, their fiery brand of introspective punk touched on homelessness, teenage pregnancy, drug use, friendship, isolation, and a grimy sort of romance. Sound Of A New World Being Born compiles their Lookout singles like “Sleep What’s That “and Quit Talkin’ Claude EP with a handful of compilation and split 7” tracks. In cooperation with the band, Numero remastered the 16-track album and freshened up the accompanying poster to make the perfect legacy edition of this ’80s punk classic.

 File Under: Punk
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crystal

Crystal Fairy: s/t (Ipecac) LP
Members of the Melvins (Buzz Osborne and Dale Crover), At The Drive-In/The Mars Volta (Omar Rodriguez-Lopez) and Le Butcherettes (Teri Gender Bender) have formed the roaring new rock band, Crystal Fairy and present their self-titled debut. “When the Melvins toured with Le Butcherettes, Teri would come out at the end of the set and do ‘Rebel Girl’ with us,” explains drummer Dale Crover. “It was almost always the highlight of the show! From doing that, we knew there was some chemistry between us that was worth exploring. We became close friends with both Teri and Omar on the tour and came up with the idea of starting a new band with them.” “Omar caught up with us on the Melvins’ tour because he is an admirer. Through the travels, the Melvins and Omar connected as well,” adds singer Teri Gender Bender. “Sometimes, Omar and I would fantasize loudly of hopefully being able to form a power group together. Before we knew it, we were writing music in the studio (both in El Paso and L.A.) and birthed a magical little gem that I am extremely proud to be a part of.”  “The Melvins have had many different line-ups, and we’ll continue to mix things up but with Crystal Fairy, working with Teri and Omar, I knew this was something different and deserved to have its own identity,” said singer/guitar player Buzz Osborne. Omar Rodriguez-Lopez notes , “While our main bands will still remain our focus and priority, we intend to have as much fun as possible recording and touring with this special and unique project.”

File Under: Rock, Melvins
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elder

Elder: Reflections of a Floating World (Armageddon) LP
It’s time to get euphoric. With Elder’s fourth full-length album, an epic piece of rock music will be released unto the world. And we think that’s a reason to celebrate. Band members and friends Nick Disalvo, Jack Donovan and Matt Couto already dismissed any last remains of stoner metal stereotypes on Lore (2015). Their current album, which was written following the long and acclaimed Lore tour in moments of intense creativity, is a journey into prog rock and psychedelic worlds. Six monumental songs, huge in sound, each of them their own cosmic expedition. What begins as driving mid-tempo rock filled with heavy guitar riffs repeatedly erupts into melodic tangents and clever variations. The high demands that DiSalvo places on his own songwriting seem to become more unfettered from minute to minute—as does the pleasure of listening to him. Guest musicians Michael Samos and Mike Risberg have added additional guitars, pedal steel and keyboards to the trio, making Elder’s sound more voluminous than ever, and the influences found here range from ’70s prog dinosaurs such as Yes, King Crimson or Pink Floyd to their kindred spirits in the European psychedelic and space rock scenes. And it is of course a cliché, but Elder bring their own organism to life from all these influences. Elder will be taking Reflections of a Floating World live to European fans in July and August 2017, followed by a USA tour in the fall. The East Coast trio will be a quartet for the first time ever on these tours with the addition of Mike Risberg on second guitar and keyboards. Anybody who has already seen Elder live know that they shouldn’t miss the opportunity to see them on this tour. 500 LP pressed on clear / green vinyl.

File Under: Metal

fucked up

Fucked Up: Live at Third Man (Third Man) LP
Picture it: peak summer in Nashville, TN in July 2015. The sweltering days and nights are long as ever and the humidity ain’t kind. So what does Third Man Records do? They put on a matinee all ages show with one of the most raucous bands you can conceive of resulting in one of the sweatiest crowds in Blue Room history – Fucked Up. True to tradition, they recorded the whole thing direct-to-acetate and are now unleashing the force unto the world. Fucked Up is a rare band. They’re a mutant strain of post-hardcore, arena-punk super-talents capable of reworking the strange and the beautiful into something cohesive, but never at the expense of their signature, addictive, furious entropy. They are truly a blitzkrieg of song and lyric. Is it work-shy and lazy to call a live record whose songs flow seamlessly into one another “epic?” What if every track is a battering ram of rabid guitar, fugitive vocals, deathmatch bass and roaring drums? No matter how you dice it…one word won’t ever be enough to explain a band like Fucked Up. All substitutions will pale in comparison to the experience itself. But Third Man’s record does the show justice. They’ve been itching to get this one on your turntables and they know you can’t wait to drop the needle. So here it is..a six-track sonic boom of a record now available for your listening pleasure!

File Under: Indie Rock, Punk

gonzalez

Delia Gonzalez: Horse Follows Darkness (DFA) LP
Horse Follows Darkness is the second record by Delia Gonzalez and follow up to her debut In Remembrance. The title is taken from a werewolf genre film her 8 year old son Wolfgang had created. At this time, Wolfgang also turned Delia onto a genre of cinema she had always resisted – the American Western. The narrative is one of re-encountering the frontier mentality that shaped the country but somehow never faded. This time as a foreigner. The genre of the Western remains pertinent, many of the same stories of that brutally deromanticized era are still relevant today. America hasn’t changed – the cast, times and settings have, but we still hold onto the same ideal. Horse Follows Darkness is essentially a modern electronic soundtrack for the Revisionist Western. Even the idea for the record cover is inspired by one of the most well known modern Westerns, Robert Altman’s McCabe & Mrs Miller. The album was recorded with Abe Seiferth at Transmitter Park studios, which Delia likens to “going to the finest tailor.” Abe became an integral part of the recording, playing guitar and helping to suggest experimenting with different synthesizers, something Delia was keen to do. She refers to Abe as “a magical and incredibly intuitive collaborator” regarding the sound of the record. The music that emerged from these recording sessions combines a range of influences – from the compositions of Erik Satie to Salon De Musique, the solo piano record by Su Tissue (of the L.A. punk band Suburban Lawns). The record also took on a much different shape and sound with the introduction of the Sequential Circuits Prophet VS, as well as a vintage Korg Poly synth and the Roland SH-101. The golden era Krautrock recordings of bands like Neu!, Cluster and Harmonia were touchstones as well, the repetition, swirling soundscapes and locked-in rhythm tracks.

File Under: Electronic, Experimental, Minimal
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nys

New Year: Snow (Undertow) LP
First new album in 9 years. National press campaign by Jacob Daneman at Press Here. Track premieres on Pitchfork, NPR, Stereogum. “It’s been nearly nine years since The New Year released any new music. But since the slowcore/indie-rock outfit dropped their last LP, The New Year, band members have stayed busy. Brothers Matt and Bubba Kadane worked on an outstanding comprehensive box set of music from their previous band, the seminal Bedhead. In 2013, they dropped a record as Overseas with compatriots David Bazan and Will Johnson. And the whole way through, they tinkered with and labored over a batch of songs for a fourth LP.” – Paste.

File Under: Indie Rock
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pentagram

Pentagram: Relentless (Peaceville) LP
Cult rock legend Bobby Liebling and his band Pentagram have been churning out genre defining and highly admired hard rock/doom metal for over four decades. At the onset of the 1970’s, they helped birth the behemoth known as ‘heavy metal’ and years later they’d be planting the seed of what would become known as ‘doom’. Though a prolific musical entity throughout the ’70s, due to many band breakups and personnel changes they didn’t issue a full-length album until the release of Pentagram in 1985. In 1993, Pentagram renamed and reissued the album on Peaceville Records under the appropriate title Relentless. “If producing top quality doom records was an Olympic sport, Pentagram would be weighed down by gold medals.” – Kerrang!

File Under: Metal
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solstafir

Solstafir: Berdreyminn (Season of Mist) LP
Iceland’s Solstafir return on Season of Mist with the entrancing new album Berdreyminn. Evolving from their hard rock roots, Berdreyminn is drenched in the glorious buzz of vintage tube amps and classic guitar harmonies. Their bombast is wrought with translucent melodies and an artisans finesse to create soulful, moving songs that are both evocative and anthemic. The band’s graceful, measured approach is cinematic in its scope and resonates long past listening. Solstafir is the genuine article and Berdreyminn another epic moment in their canon of greatness.

File Under: Metal, Iceland

troubled horse

Troubled Horse: Revolution of Repeat (Rise Above) LP
Formed in 2003 in their hometown of Örebro, Sweden (also home to Witchcraft), Troubled Horse erupted into the consciousness of riff-worshippers everywhere with a low-key seven-inch vinyl release in 2010, and then their debut album Step Inside, which was released by Rise Above Records in 2012. An invigorating whirlwind of spiky garage rock, propulsive psychedelia and thunderous, overdriven soul-meets-doom riffing, Step Inside showcased a band with little interest in current or nostalgic trends, instead reveling in a consciously classic but undeniably fresh new take on the most revered and ageless of musical components. With a refreshed line-up, Martin Heppich’s vision of a no-holds-barred celebration of heavy rock in all its colorful, subversive glory has never sounded stronger than it does on their sophomore effort Revolution On Repeat. From the barreling, high-energy thunder of “Hurricane” and “Which Way To The Mob” through to the sprawling head-rush of “The Haunted” and acid-tinged, lo-fi psych of “Desperation,” it’s an instinctive and naturalistic triumph for fire, fury and feel over the forces of plodding revisionism. Throw in a sublime rendition of Warren Zevon’s death-premonition anthem “My Shit’s Fucked Up,” and the album amounts to a bold, pertinent and subtly dispiriting statement on the state of the world, all underpinned by the loudest guitars imaginable. Revolution On Repeat is a diverse, diverting and irresistible slab of curiously timely heavy rock that defies the rulebook and breathes new life into that most enduring and fecund of musical genres.

File Under: Metal
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…..Restocks…..

Amps: Pacer (Plain) LP
Beyonce: s/t (Sony) LP
Buena Vista Social Club: s/t (World Circuit) LP
Can: Future Days (Mute) LP
Miles Davis: Dark Magus (4 Men With Beards) LP
Deathprod: Imaginary… (Smalltown Supersound) LP
Brian Eno/David Byrne: My Life in the Bush of Ghosts (Nonesuch) LP
Fugazi: Repeater (Dischord) LP
Funkadelic: Cosmic Slop (Westbound) LP
Funkadelic: Maggot Brain (Westbound) LP
Funkadelic: Standing on the Verge of Getting it on (Westbound) LP
Gorillaz: Humanz (Warner) LP
Husker Du: Candy Apple Grey (Rhino) LP
Kaleo: A/B (Atlantic) LP
Mazzy Star: So Tonight That I Might See (Plain) LP
Of Monsters & Men: Beneath The Skin (Universal) LP
Of Monsters & Men: My Head… (Universal) LP
Pulp: Different Class (Plain) LP
Rag’n’Bone Man: Human (Sony) LP
Red Hot Chili Peppers: Blood Sugar Sex Magik (Universal) LP
Shellac: At Action Park (Touch & Go) LP
Slates: Summery (New Damage) LP
Spacemen 3: The Perfect Prescription (Fire) LP
Kurt Vile: Square Shells (Matador) 12″
Kurt Vile: So Outta Reach (Matador) 12″
Ween: Chocolate & Cheese (Plain) LP
Ween: The Mollusk (Plain) LP
Ween: White Pepper (Plain) LP
Various: Eccentric Soul: The Capsoul Label (Numero) LP
Various: Titan: It’s All Pop! (Numero) 4LP

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…..news letter #793 – uk raerz…..

Ah, Spring, sweet Spring. The sun is shining. Rain clouds are looming. Kids are playing soccer. People are selling their records. We’ve been getting flooded with used records the last few weeks. Also sorts of stuff, classic rock, indie rock, UK rarities. You name it! And there’s some great new stuff too! All in all a really great week to be buying records. Come stroll through for a dig.

Also, a couple of real nice chaps who also happen to work here are playing a show and releasing some new tunes on May 27th at our friend’s barber shop. So, if you’d like to see Slates, Switches, and Tee Tahs at Barber Ha, you’re gonna need a ticket, and we’ve got em. $15, cash only. Get em while you can.

…..pick of the week…..

moral

Deathprod: Morals & Dogma
(Smalltown Supersound) LP

YES! This album is like, the bleakest, darkest, saddest ambient album. Super hyped for this to finally be released on vinyl, just in time for a beautiful May long weekend. Based in Oslo, Norway, composer Helge Sten has been crafting this music since the early ’90s, a deeply atmospheric, grainy minimalism that slows time down and explores the very particles of sound itself. The Deathprod concept arose in 1991 when Sten realized his complex array of homemade electronics, samplers, sound processing and analogue effects—cumulatively known as the “Audio Virus”—could add a musical dimension above and beyond the merely technical. Almost obsolete samplers and playback devices distort and transform sounds into unrecognizable mutations of their former selves. The virus breeds layers of complex and overlapping sonic debris, creating a kind of cellular composition. Sten is a founder member of Norwegian improvising group Supersilent and has produced records by Motorpsycho, Susanna, Jenny Hval, Arve Henriksen and others. In 1998, alongside Biosphere, he electronically transformed the music of Norway’s leading contemporary composer, Arne Nordheim. More recently he composed music for Harry Partch’s legendary invented instruments for the Cologne based Ensemble Musikfabrik. Now the core trilogy of Deathprod albums are released for the first time on vinyl. Cut to vinyl by Rashad Becker at Dubplates and Mastering in Berlin, they form Deathprod’s complete official canon. HIGHEST RECOMMENDATION!

File Under: Dark Ambient, Supersilent
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…..new arrivals…..

actress

Actress: AZD (Ninja Tune) LP
Actress, real name Darren Jordan Cunningham, known to friends as Daz, returns with a new album, now on Ninja Tune and a new music system called AZD (pronounced “Azid”), a chrome aspect journey into a parallel world. An artist who has always preferred to make music than to talk about it, in AZD he has achieved another remarkable landmark, one which is as resistant to interpretation as it is demanding of it. The album is themed around chrome – both as a reflective surface to see the self in, and as something that carves luminous voids out of any color and fine focuses white and black representing the perfect metaphor for the bleakness of life in the Metropolis as suggested by Anish Kapoor’s Cloud Gate. Take lead single, “X22RME” (pronounced “Extreme”) which elegantly plays between the lines of Oriental classic rave and Balinese warehouse Techno machined in a Rotherhithe lock up welding the grooves into a seamless cracked joint. At the other end of the spectrum is “Faure in Chrome,” a byproduct or development from his collaboration with the London Contemporary Orchestra, in which he “repatterns” aspect of Faure’s Requiem into a piece which sounds like the very institution of classical music being encased in electronic ice and scanned through a high frequency bandwidth. In between are gems like “Runner,” a personal re-soundtracking of Blade Runner ” and “Falling Rizlas,” an alienated music-box ballad. It’s a remarkable piece of work, that harks back both to Actress’ previous productions and to earlier iterations of the (broadly conceived) “techno” project without being beholden to anything but Cunningham’s forward-facing, individual and disembodied vision.

File Under: Elecrtonic, Techno
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gambino

Childish Gambino: Awaken, My Love! (Glassnote) LP
In tomorrow… Awaken, My Love! is the third album from entertainer extraordinaire Childish Gambino aka Donald Glover and first since 2013. As Childish Gambino once again sheds his skin, Awaken, My Love! is a sonic evolution. It has been described as R&B meets Pink Floyd, and an amalgam of rock, funk, and soul influences. It is the groundbreaking next step from the multi-talented artist following the genre blending STN MTN / Kauai mixtape and the twice-Grammy nominated rap album, Because The Internet. Features: • 2 x heavyweight 45 RPM LP box set • Exclusive booklet • Virtual reality headset • Glow in the dark cover • Instructions to access exclusive virtual reality live performances from the PHAROS Experience

File Under: R&B, Psych
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cindy lee

Cindy Lee: Malenkost (w.25) LP
In tomorrow…  Cindy Lee is the brainchild of singer/guitarist Patrick Flegel. While some may know Flegel from his time spent in Canadian experimental indie band Women, Cindy Lee has spent the past four years crafting songs that push and pull in opposing directions – from tales of tragedy laced with haywire distortion to moments of breathtaking beauty. On Malenkost, Flegel combines everything that makes Cindy Lee so essential: heart-wrenching romantic pleas, rough shards of noise and twilit ballads. Featuring the lo-fi pop single “A Message From The Aching Sky,” Malenkost sounds like Deerhunter playing The Supremes or vice versa. Superior Viaduct’s imprint W.25TH presents the first of many Cindy Lee releases. Spectral and timeless, the music of Cindy Lee is hauntingly familiar yet of another plane, a magical collision of Brill Building hooks and uncompromising No Wave. “Cindy Lee is intensely dark and cathartic, an eerie fever dream of fleeting, utterly heartbreaking classic girl-group melodies … one of the best things we have heard all year.” —Gorilla Vs. Bear

 File Under: Indie Rock, Psych, Women, Lo Fi
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coltrane

Alice & John Coltrane: Cosmic Music (Superior Viaduct) LP
In tomorrow…  John Coltrane transformed the inner architecture of jazz, throughout the mid-1950s and 1960s and long after his premature death at age 40 in 1967. No other American musician could be said to be at the spiritual center of the ‘60s musical universe as Trane influenced Albert Ayler, La Monte Young, Jimi Hendrix and everybody in between. Cosmic Music, originally self-released by Alice Coltrane in 1968 and later issued by Impulse!, features two tracks (“Manifestation” and “Rev. King”) by John Coltrane’s legendary final quintet that were recorded in San Francisco on February 2nd, 1966 and two more (“Lord Help Me To Be” and “The Sun”) from Alice Coltrane’s very first session as a bandleader, recorded six months after her husband’s passing. “Manifestation” opens with the group already in mid-flight: Trane’s fierce tenor leads the way with Pharoah Sanders’ blistering sax and Alice’s powerful chords hearing his call. On “Rev. King,” Trane introduces a lyrical theme and then the composition erupts into fiery incantations, while Jimmy Garrison’s bass throbs alongside the propulsive, gravity-defying drumming of Rashied Ali. Foreshadowing her majestic debut, A Monastic Trio, “Lord Help Me To Be” brings Alice’s celestial piano playing and inspired improvisations to the foreground with Sanders, Garrison and drummer Ben Riley rumbling in tow. “The Sun,” a meditative ballad with subtle urgency, perfectly closes the album’s contemplative circle. As John Coltrane recites on the final track, “May there be peace and love and perfection throughout all creation.”

File Under: Jazz
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treetop

Deathprod: Treetop Drive (Smalltown Supersound) LP
Based in Oslo, Norway, composer Helge Sten has been crafting this music since the early ’90s, a deeply atmospheric, grainy minimalism that slows time down and explores the very particles of sound itself. The Deathprod concept arose in 1991 when Sten realized his complex array of homemade electronics, samplers, sound processing and analogue effects—cumulatively known as the “Audio Virus”—could add a musical dimension above and beyond the merely technical. Almost obsolete samplers and playback devices distort and transform sounds into unrecognizable mutations of their former selves. The virus breeds layers of complex and overlapping sonic debris, creating a kind of cellular composition. Sten is a founder member of Norwegian improvising group Supersilent and has produced records by Motorpsycho, Susanna, Jenny Hval, Arve Henriksen and others. In 1998, alongside Biosphere, he electronically transformed the music of Norway’s leading contemporary composer, Arne Nordheim. More recently he composed music for Harry Partch’s legendary invented instruments for the Cologne based Ensemble Musikfabrik. Now the core trilogy of Deathprod albums are released for the first time on vinyl. Cut to vinyl by Rashad Becker at Dubplates and Mastering in Berlin, they form Deathprod’s complete official canon.

File Under: Dark Ambient
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imaginary

Deathprod: Imaginary Songs From Tristan Da Cunha (Smalltown Supersound) LP
Based in Oslo, Norway, composer Helge Sten has been crafting this music since the early ’90s, a deeply atmospheric, grainy minimalism that slows time down and explores the very particles of sound itself. The Deathprod concept arose in 1991 when Sten realized his complex array of homemade electronics, samplers, sound processing and analogue effects—cumulatively known as the “Audio Virus”—could add a musical dimension above and beyond the merely technical. Almost obsolete samplers and playback devices distort and transform sounds into unrecognizable mutations of their former selves. The virus breeds layers of complex and overlapping sonic debris, creating a kind of cellular composition. Sten is a founder member of Norwegian improvising group Supersilent and has produced records by Motorpsycho, Susanna, Jenny Hval, Arve Henriksen and others. In 1998, alongside Biosphere, he electronically transformed the music of Norway’s leading contemporary composer, Arne Nordheim. More recently he composed music for Harry Partch’s legendary invented instruments for the Cologne based Ensemble Musikfabrik. Now the core trilogy of Deathprod albums are released for the first time on vinyl. Cut to vinyl by Rashad Becker at Dubplates and Mastering in Berlin, they form Deathprod’s complete official canon.

File Under: Dark Ambient

domake

Do Make Say Think: Stubborn Persistent Illusions (Constellation) LP
Do Make Say Think has been widely celebrated as one of the preeminent instrumental rock bands of the 90s-00s. Stubborn Persistent Illusions is the group’s first album in eight years – and a brilliant addition to one of the most consistently inventive and critically praised discographies in the ‘post-rock’ canon. They have a well-earned reputation for imbuing their instrumental music with soulful and emotive narrative power that doesn’t rely on obvious tropes or bombastic dynamics. Among the band’s special strengths is an ineffable naturalism that avoids anything too woolly, proggy, purist or clichéd, while remaining a fundamentally guitar-driven group whose ornate four- and six-string interplay balances rockism, pastoralism and electronic-influenced post production in a class of its own. Stubborn Persistent Illusions is built from this distinctive toolkit, at once familiar and as fresh as anything DMST has committed to tape. A short Bhuddist poem about boundlessness and recurrence informs this profoundly imagistic listening experience, amplified by the beautiful commissioned paintings of the deluxe gatefold album art. Stubborn Persistent Illusions testifies to the idea that an honest conviction in the communicative power of cerebral instrumental rock need not imply pretension, escapism, faux naiveté or nostalgia. Do Make Say Think enter their third decade with a new album that helps reaffirm the promise of genuinely emotive, narrative, restorative and life-affirming instrumental rock music – and will surely rank among their best.

File Under: Post Rock, Instrumental
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dreyblatt

Arnold Dreyblatt: Propellers in Love (Superior Viaduct) LP
In tomorrow… Arnold Dreyblatt has been called “the most rock ‘n’ roll of all the composers to emerge from New York’s downtown scene in the 1970s.” Dreyblatt founded The Orchestra Of Excited Strings in 1979, harnessing unusual tuning intervals to an exuberant performance style. Propellers In Love, the Orchestra’s second album – originally released in 1986 on the Stasch imprint, in conjunction with the contemporary art space Künstlerhaus Bethanien – develops Dreyblatt’s rhythmically exacting exploration of the glittering resonances and overtones generated by an ensemble of uniquely-altered stringed instruments and drums. On Propellers In Love, simple song titles – “Odd & Even,” “Harmonics,” “Bowing” – belie intricate harmonic structures. Dreyblatt’s modified instruments – a contrabass and miniature piano fitted with piano wire along with violin, all tuned in just intonation – undergo the Orchestra’s rapid, staccato attacks. Sparkling timbres dance above interlocking rhythmic patterns moored by sparse yet propulsive percussion (“Pedal Tone Dance” and the title track). Throughout, the Orchestra’s perpetual motion achieves a tremulous and exquisite density. Thirty years since its initial release, Propellers In Love remains a peerless work of second-generation American minimalism. This first-time domestic release is recommended for fans of Glenn Branca, Ellen Fullman and Charlemagne Palestine.

File Under: Avant Garde, Experimental
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endless

Endless Boogie: Vibe Killer (No Quarter) LP
New York’s ’60s influenced garage rock act Endless Boogie (no better described than their own name) return on No Quarter Records with their fourth studio effort Vibe Killer. The first single LP of their tenure, the concise six track affair was produced by the band’s own Paul “Top Dollar” Major and recorded at Gary’s Electric in Brooklyn. As on the band’s 2013 album Long Island, guitar nomad Matt Sweeney again joins Endless Boogie’s killer core of Marc Razo (bass), Harry Druzd (drums), Jesper Eklow (guitar) and Major (vocals, guitar). The LP’s accompanying download card also includes the CD-only track “Whilom” plus two further bonus tracks.

File Under:
 Psych
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extremity

Extremity: Extremely Fucking Dead (20 buck Spin) LP
In tomorrow… Gestating in the twisted bowels of the Bay Area for six years, only now, in 2017, has Extremity dislodged itself from the musty climes of obscurity to contaminate the American death metal cesspool. Like a jaundiced plume drifting up from a fetid swamp, on Extremely Fucking Dead the four-piece infects their audience with odiously oozing intentions. From the grisly gore metal of “Crepuscular Crescendo” to the Bolt Thrower ravaged plunder permeating “Bestial Destiny”, Extremity presents a simultaneously studied and loosely devastating specter of death metal cited from the genre’s many epicenters in America, Scandinavia, the UK and beyond. The veteran lineup of Shelby Lermo (Vastum), Aesop Dekker (Worm Ouroboros, Ludicra, Agalloch), Marissa Martinez-Hoadley (Cretin, Repulsion) and Erika Osterhout (Necrosic, Scolex, Trepanation) stirs the salaciously sanguine death and grind sewage on this debut to a crepitating clamor of cacophonous cruelty.

File Under:
Metal
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farah

Farah: The Only Ones (Italians Do It Better) LP
In tomorrow… The enigmatic FARAH is back with her third 12-inch EP on Italians Do It Better. Picking up where “Law Of Life” left off, she alternates between Farsi and English asking: “Can you touch the dying sun?” Features a guest appearance from JOHNNY JEWEL on vocoder. Five unreleased tracks. 17 minutes of music. Pressed on 180-gram transparent copper vinyl in an edition of 500 copies.

File Under: Disco, Synth Pop
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gibson

Jon Gibson: Two Solo Pieces (Superior Viaduct) LP
In tomorrow… For his second album, Two Solo Pieces, Jon Gibson forgoes the dense, multi-layered timbres of Visitations in favor of simple textures and tone. While Two Solo Pieces serves up further evidence of Gibson’s centrality to American minimalism – witness its inclusion in Alan Licht’s famed Minimal Top Ten list – this profoundly intimate record also reveals the beauty of enclosed spaces and infinite harmonic vistas. As its unadorned title suggests, Two Solo Pieces consists of a pair of side-long tracks featuring the composer alone. While “Cycles,” an iridescent improvisation on organ, achieves a downright eerie sense of expansiveness, Gibson’s captivating alto flute on “Untitled” draws the listener inside the instrument itself. The photo on the album’s back cover – a seated Gibson surrounded by cascading rows of organ pipes and the vaulted ceiling in Manhattan’s Peace Church – offers a striking visual complement to these gorgeous recordings. Originally released in 1977 on Philip Glass’ Chatham Square imprint, this first-time vinyl reissue is recommended for fans of Anthony Moore, Roberto Cacciapaglia and Terry Riley.

File Under: Avant Garde, Minimalism
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helium1

Helium: Dirt of Luck (Matador) LP
Led by Mary Timony (Ex Hex, Wild Flag, Autoclave), Helium was one of the most important rock bands of the ‘90s, and finally their influential output is being released on vinyl after a decade of being out of print courtesy of Matador Records. In addition to the reissues of breakthrough 1995 debut The Dirt Of Luck (featuring stellar cuts “Superball” and “Pat’s Trick”) and revered 1997 swan song The Magic City (bundled on a double LP with the No Guitars EP), Helium will also release a brand new collection of rarities, b-sides, and unreleased demos on a 19-track double LP (with 5 bonus downloads) titled Ends With And.

File Under: Indie Rock
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helium

Helium: Ends With And (Matador) LP
Led by Mary Timony (Ex Hex, Wild Flag, Autoclave), Helium was one of the most important rock bands of the ‘90s. No history of American indie should be written without a chapter on Timony, who managed to straddle multiple worlds – among them Boston’s college-borne rock realm and Dischord’s DC-based DIY scene – over the course of her early career. In the Boston band Helium, Timony took center stage, playing rock and roll that was anything but straightforward. Ends With And collects the band’s singles and compilation tracks. Early singles like the liberatory “Hole In The Ground,” from their second 7-inch, and the churning “XXX”-“OOO” diptych, from the Pirate Prude EP, show how immediately Helium’s aesthetic was established; later offerings like the swirling “What Institution Are You From,” off 1995’s Superball EP, and the crystalline “Puffin Stars,” from a 1994 Kill Rock Stars compilation, show Timony’s fluid ability to move between sinewy rock and refracted pop. The collection also contains previously unreleased material including the spindly “Golden Bridge,” the last song Timony wrote for Helium, and buyers can also download rarities including an early version of The Dirt Of Luck’s music-box fantasia “Lucky Charm” and an up-from-the-vaults live version of the slashing (and previously unreleased) “Green Chair.”

File Under: Indie Rock
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helium2

Helium: Magic City + No Guitar (Matador) LP
Led by Mary Timony (Ex Hex, Wild Flag, Autoclave), Helium was one of the most important rock bands of the ‘90s, and finally their influential output is being released on vinyl after a decade of being out of print courtesy of Matador Records. In addition to the reissues of renowned 1995 debut The Dirt Of Luck (featuring stellar cuts “Superball” and “Pat’s Trick”) and revered 1997 swan song The Magic City (bundled on a double LP with the No Guitars EP), Helium will also release a brand new collection of rarities, b-sides, and unreleased demos on a 19-track double LP (with 5 bonus downloads) titled Ends With And.

File Under: Indie Rock
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jewel

Johnny Jewel: Home OST (Italians Do It Better) LP
In tomorrow… The soundtrack to critically acclaimed Flemish director Fien Troch’s fourth film Home. Side A features pop music from Chromatics and Symmetry with Johnny Jewel’s ambient score on the flip. Fourteen songs. Pressed on 180-gram white vinyl and housed in gatefold jackets.

File Under: Electronic, OST
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jjewel

Johnny Jewel: A Beautiful Now (Italians Do It better) LP
In tomorrow… The soundtrack to director and writer Daniela Amavia’s first feature film starring Abigail Spencer, Cheyenne Jackson, Collette Wolfe, Elena Satine and Sonja Kinski. Features music from Johnny Jewel, Desire, Chromatics, and Glass Candy. Pressed on 180-gram red vinyl and housed in gatefold jackets. Edition of 1,000 copies.

File Under: Electronic, Pop, OST

nitejewel

Night Jewel: Obsession (Italians Do It Better) LP
In tomorrow… Nite Jewel returns with a five-song teaser to an upcoming full-length. 20 minutes of music pressed on 180-gram pink champagne vinyl in an edition of 500 copies.

File Under: Electronic

singles

OST: Singles (Legacy) LP
Yikes, the timing on this one is rather unfortunate… The 25th anniversary of Cameron Crowe’s groundbreaking 1992 romantic comedy, Singles, is being commemorated with the release of a newly expanded and remastered edition of the film’s integral Original Motion Picture Soundtrack. The 2LP edition features the album’s original 13 tracks newly mastered and freshly pressed across four sides of collectible 12″ vinyl plus a bonus CD of rarities and unreleased tracks included as a special insert. The newly expanded edition of the film’s soundtrack was produced by Danny Bramson and Crowe and mastered by Mike Piacentini at Battery Studios, New York and includes liner notes – and a track-by-track description of the album’s music written especially for this collection by Crowe. The newly released bonus CD (included with the 2LP-set) features previously unreleased recordings by Chris Cornell, Mike McCready, Mudhoney, and Paul Westerberg in addition to rarities such as Cornell’s 1992 EP Poncier (debuting an early rendition of “Spoonman”) and tracks from the film not included on the best-selling soundtrack album first released on June 30, 1992. It also includes “Touch Me I’m Dick,” the signature track from Singles performed by Citizen Dick (a fictional band created for the film featuring frontman Matt Dillon backed by Pearl Jam’s Eddie Vedder, Stone Gossard and Jeff Ament). 25 years ago, the film Singles and its soundtrack worked together to bring the underground Seattle music scene to the forefront of mainstream consciousness. The album was among the first top-selling movie soundtracks of the 1990s to showcase new material from emerging contemporary acts including Alice In Chains, Pearl Jam and Soundgarden – while Paul Westerberg, in his first solo recordings outside The Replacements – contributed two songs and provided the score for the film. Smashing Pumpkins were also featured on the soundtrack with the song “Drown.” “The album itself was always designed to be sort of an anti-soundtrack, more like a souvenir and a simple mix-tape of some of Seattle’s finest,” said Cameron Crowe. “It really is and was a tribute to those hard-working bands that welcomed me to their city with open arms, and the music so many still love so much. Anyway, here we are now revisiting ‘Singles,’ the film, as well as the soundtrack you hold in your hands, expanded with a special tip of the hat to the fans of the original release. Included are unreleased and raw elements that helped shape the experience of making the movie back in 1991. Hope you enjoy the trip back as much as I did – Viva Seattle!” The expanded edition of Singles: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack is cause to celebrate anew the radical rock sounds that radiated out of the American Northwest a quarter century ago and changed pop music forever!

File Under: Grunge, Rock, OST, RIP
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priests

Priests: Nothing Feels Natural (Sister Polygon) LP
In tomorrow… Nothing Feels Natural is the first full-length by Washington, D.C.’s PRIESTS. Recorded in the fall of 2016, the record is the culmination of two years’ writing, touring, tweaking, and refining. Throughout that time the band has carved out an existence on its own terms,performing mostly all-ages shows booked via a network of like-minded artists both within and outside punk communities. The album represents a major step forward for Priests. It’s the bands most stylistically diverse set of songs to date, expanding on their lo-fi post-punk bona-fides with ideas drawn from pop, R&B, and industrial noise. Thematically, Nothing can be understood as a series of vignettes—nine stories that crystallize into a bigger picture about the economics of human relationships, the invisibility of feminized labor, and the dual purpose of art for both the group and the individual. The album will be the first full-length LP released on Sister Polygon Records, the label that Priests founded and operate. Priests are Daniele Daniele (drums), Katie Alice Greer (vocals), G.L. Jaguar (guitar), and Taylor Mulitz (bass). Formed in 2011, the band has proven a valuable force for strangeness in a city that is increasingly terraformed by norms. More significantly, they’ve helped to raise the general standard of show-going at home through cassettes and singles released on Sister Polygon, including music by bands like Sneaks, Snail Mail, Pinkwash, Cigarette, Downtown Boys, and numerous Priests-affiliated groups like Gauche and Flasher. Still, even amidst thriving hometown creativity, Priests possess a singular gravity. They are physical and combustible, urgent and visceral.

File Under: Punk
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YC-DR-Modern-Pressure-Cover-300x300

Daniel Romano: Modern Pressure (You’ve Changed) LP
Daniel Romano is an Ontario-based artist, poet, musician and performer of international acclaim. A genre-defying student of musical experimentation and a brilliant multi-instrumentalist, Romano is acutely well versed in the languages of melody, shape, lyric construction and song arrangement. Apt in its title, Modern Pressure will surely prove to be his most explorative endeavor to date. The twelve tracks pick up where Mosey left off, boldly asking, “What age is this? What blooming weight do we carry through these stolen streets?” Written in observational scrutiny beneath the overcast atmosphere of 2016, the record vigorously tackles the present-day heaviness we contain in the jotting bones of our guilty expressions. It pleads for the restoration of empathy and resonance, to fill the empty chamber once again. The recording phase for Modern Pressure took place in a minimalistic cabin in secluded Finnsäs, Sweden over the month of August 2016 (with additional string and horn players being added at Baldwin Street Sound in Toronto, ON in October, 2016). Engineered by long-time collaborator Kenneth Meehan, the fevered pace of work lent itself to the unrestrained and undeviated nature of the songs themselves.

File Under: Folk, SSW
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woods

Woods: Love is Love (Woodsist) LP
In tomorrow… “Wisdom comes with age, so it’s no surprise that Woods have grown more sage in the twelve years since they formed, expanding from sylvan drum circles into increasingly elaborate, transcendent psychedelia.”- Pitchfork “We walked down streets and crammed onto trains, our faces masks of fear. Unsure how to react, we, collectively, did not react. We grieved for a country and an ideal we never thought would die. We grieved for a loss of certainty. We argued about what we thought would happen. We preached understanding. We advocated for anger. Some people said that we’d at least get some incredible art, other people said that was a small view of a world we were quickly realizing we’d misunderstood. Everyone was right. Everyone was wrong. Art made in precarious times matters as much as we let it matter. But what are we looking for from the art we enjoy? Escapism? A reckoning with harsh reality? A temporary shared hallucination? Music can heal because it presents the pain of being human as universal. Love is Love was written and recorded in the two months immediately following the election, but it’s not a record borne entirely of angry, knee-jerk reaction to what America is becoming. Instead, it’s a meditation on love, and on what life means now. Taking cues from last year’s City Sun Eater in the River of Light, it feels very much like a record made from living, shoulder to shoulder, in a major city: weaving psychedelic swirls of guitar between languid horns reminiscent of the best Ethiopian jazz—Love is Love is a distinctly New York record. It is a document of protest in uncertain times and an open-hearted rejection of cynicism in favor of emotional honesty. It is bright, and then, unexpectedly, a little dark sometimes too. There will be parts of life where we will watch as events unfold and we will feel helpless. We will not be sure of the future. On good days, we’ll have each other. On the bad ones, we’ll turn to the art that helps us feel something. Love is Love is a document of the new world we live in, proof that light can come from despair and hope is still possible. We just need a little help remembering it exists.”- Sam Hockley-Smith

File Under: Indie Rock
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vortex

Various: Hightlights of Vortex (Etats Units) LP
In tomorrow… The brainchild of visual artist Jordan Belson and electronics polymath Henry Jacobs, the Vortex Experiments ran from 1957 to 1960, first at San Francisco’s Morrison Planetarium and later at the SF Museum of Art. The very name of these events announced their aim: a swirling totality of sensory experience. Around Belson’s richly-colored visuals – making use of the planetarium’s entire dome and featuring luminous, sharply geometric imagery projected through an array of devices – Jacobs ringed a system of roughly 40 multidirectional loudspeakers, each of which could be precisely controlled to produce, in the words of one reviewer, “a living theater of sound and light.” A landmark recording in the history of electronic tape music and an engrossing artifact of proto-psychedelia, Highlights Of Vortex gathers recordings designed for the Vortex system by Jacobs and collaborators David Talcott, William Loughborough, and Gordon Longfellow. Source material including free improvisation, field recording,classical Indian instrumentation, West African polyrhythms and musique concrète is transmogrified through tape manipulation, atomizing swathes of reverb and delay, and other live and recorded effects, making dramatic use of the monumental Vortex soundsystem. An unprecedented marriage of image and sound, Vortex Experiments exercised immeasurable impact on the imagination and practice of countless experimental visual and sonic artists so this album is a must for fans of such visionaries as Stan Brakhage, Tony Conrad, and Jack Smith. Limited edition of 500 numbered copies on clear vinyl.

File Under: Avant Garde, Early Electronic
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…..Restocks…..

Alabama Shakes: Sound & Color (ATO) LP
Aphex Twin: I Care Because You Do (1972) LP
Buena Vista Social Club: s/t (World Circuit) LP
Nick Cave: Skeleton Tree (Bad Seeds) LP
Alice Coltrane: Monastic Trio (Superior Viaduct) LP
John Coltrane: A Love Supreme (Impulse) LP
Crass: Feeding of the 5000 (Crass) LP
Miles Davis: Birth of Cool (Columbiaa) LP
Bob Dylan: Bringing It All Back Home (Columbia) LP
Bob Dylan: Freewheelin’ (Columbia) LP
Bob Dylan: Highway 61 Revisited (Columbia) LP
Bob Dylan: The Times They Are A Changin’ (Columbia) LP
The Fall: Dragnet (Superior Viaduct) LP
The Fall: Slates (Superior Viaduct) 10″
Flaming Lips: Oczy Mlody (Warner) LP DLX
Guided By Voices: Bee Thousand (Scat) LP
Jimi Hendrix: Are You Experienced (Reprise) LP
Billie Holiday: Lady In Satin (Columbia) LP
Hot Snakes: Audit In Progress (Swami) LP
Jay Som: Everybody Works (Polyvinyl) LP
King Gizzard: I’m In Your Mind Fuzz (Castle Face) LP
King Gizzard: Quarters (Castle Face) LP
KMD: Bl_ck B_st_rds (Metal Face) LP
Liquid Liquid: Optimo (Superior Viaduct) LP
Charles Mingus: The Black Saint & The Sinner Lady (Superior Viaduct) LP
Moondog: s/t (Columbia) LP
Oh Sees: A Weird Exits (Castle Face) LP
Oh Sees: Floating Coffin (Castle Face) LP
Oh Sees: Help (Castle Face) LP
Oh Sees: Mutilator Defeated at Last (Castle Face) LP
Oh Sees: Putrifiers (In The Red) LP
Oranssi Pazuzu: Karmokolginen (20 Buck Spin) LP
Oranssi Pazuzu: Kosmonument (20 Buck Spin) LP
Oranssi Pazuzu: Muukalainen Puhuu (20 Buck Spin) LP
Porcupine Tree: Coma Divine (Kscope) LP
Radiohead: A Moon Shaped Pool (XL) LP
Ty Segall: Lemons (Goner) LP
Shobaleader One: Elektrac (Warp) LP
Stereolab: Transient Noise Bursts (1972) LP
Sufjan Stevens: Carrie & Lowell (Asthmatic Kitty) LP
Tool: Lateralus (Zoo) LP
Townes Van Zandt: Live At The Old Quarter (Fat Possum) LP
Kurt Vile: B’Lieve I’m Goin’ Down (Matador) LP
Kurt Vile: Childish Prodigy (Matador) LP
Kurt Vile: Smoke Ring For My Halo (Matador) LP
Various: Guardians of the Galaxy (Hollywood) LP

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…..news letter #792 – too much library…..

Yikes! So much stuff in this week, we’re gonna need an annex! Anyway, loads of great stuff in this week as well as some great fresh used stuff as well. Come have a dig while the weather’s hot!

As a special treat, Constellation Records has sent us an advance copy of the new DO MAKE SAY THINK record for your listening pleasure. This Saturday (May 13th) at 2pm we’ll be playing it in store. If you are dying to hear the new album, stop in and have a listen and enjoy our a/c.

Also, a couple of real nice chaps who also happen to work here are playing a show and releasing some new tunes on May 27th at our friend’s barber shop. So, if you’d like to see Slates, Switches, and Tee Tahs at Barber Ha, you’re gonna need a ticket, and we’ve got em. $15, cash only. Get em while you can.

…..pick of the week…..

spettro

Spettro Records!
It’s no secret that we love library records around here. If don’t know what library records are, well let me tell you… they are basically the music equivalent to stock photography. It was music made for use in radio and film production. Radio stations and studios would have a ‘library’ of music and when they needed music for an ad, or a show they would find something that suited their needs and use it, and then pay based on the usage. Many brilliant composers and musicians made library records in the 60s and 70s but these records were not available to the general public, so it wasn’t until the 80s and 90s, when radio/tv stations started dumping their vinyl libraries as they were going digital, that DJs and crate diggers started to finally get access to more of these records. The other thing is that library records, because they were used for such a specific small purpose, they also tend to be rather limited and rare. So now, in the golden age of reissues loads of great records are being made available again. This Italian label popped up last year and their releases have finally made their way into the shop! If you’ve dabbled in library records, some familiar names are here.. Alessandroni, Rocchi, Fabor, etc. As for the sound, library music is a broad world… everything from romantic chamber music to avant garde electronic, funky jazz breaks to sound effects, quirky electronic to ballroom.

File Under: Library, Italian
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…..new arrivals…..

whigs

Afghan Whigs: In Spades (Sub Pop) LP
From its evocative cover art to the troubled spirits haunting its halls, The Afghan Whigs’ In Spades casts a spell that challenges the listener to unpack its dark metaphors and spectral imagery. On the one hand, In Spades is as quintessentially Afghan Whigs as anything the group has ever done – fulfilling its original mandate to explore the missing link between howling Midwestern punk like Die Kreuzen and Hüsker Dü, The Temptations’ psychedelic soul symphonies, and the expansive hard-rock tapestries of Led Zeppelin and Lynyrd Skynyrd. At the same time, this new record continues to push beyond anything in the Whigs’ previous repertoire – another trademark, along with the explosive group dynamic captured on the recording. Indeed, the chemistry of the lineup –  frontman Greg Dulli, guitarists Dave Rosser and Jon Skibic, drummer Patrick Keeler, multi-instrumentalist Rick Nelson, and Whigs co-founder/bassist John Curley – set the tone for In Spades’ creation. When it came to follow up the band’s triumphant return to recording – Do To the Beast (2014), which was the band’s first ever Top 40 album, – the die was cast. “This is the first time since Black Love [the Whigs’ 1996 noir masterpiece] that we’ve done a full-blown band album,” Dulli says. The joys, sorrows, and upheavals of innocence and experience echo throughout In Spades: it powerfully documents where The Afghan Whigs have been, and where they might go next. For Dulli and Curley, it’s a journey that, since their origins as one of the first Sub Pop acts to be signed from outside the label’s Pacific Northwest base, has spanned decades. Dulli notes they were barely in their twenties when they first started the band, and yet here they are, fulfilling dreams long held and frequently realized. “Having a break from the Whigs helped me remember what made it so rewarding,” Curley says. “Over the course of a lifetime, there are constants, and there’s also change. You see who’s dropped off the vine – who’s going in reverse, and who’s still by your side. It’s interesting to see where life takes you, and where it doesn’t. That’s the journey and it hasn’t stopped.” In Spades was recorded at Rick Nelson’s studio Marigny Sound in New Orleans, LA.

File Under: Indie Rock
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best woman

Vincent Ahehehinnou: Best Woman (Analog Africa) LP
Analog Africa present a reissue of Best Woman, Vincent Ahehehinnou’s first post-Orchestre Poly-Rythmo de Cotonou album, originally released in 1978. In early 1978, Ahehehinnou left the Poly-Rythmo without explanation. He had been one of their principal vocalist since 1968 and had helped transform them from a hard-charging nightclub band into a musical powerhouse and Africa-wide sensation. On a business trip to Nigeria, Vincent met with Ignace de Souza of Benin’s Black Santiago band, who agreed to arrange Vincent’s songs, assemble musicians, and book a session at the legendary Decca Studios in Lagos. With everything in place Vincent returned to Cotonou, gathered together all the money he had saved over the years and set out again for Lagos. The nine-piece band, handpicked by de Souza, learned the songs and set them to tape in the span of only a week … but the results are as timeless and essential as anything to emerge from West Africa in the late 1970s. Vincent’s Afrobeat credentials are in full evidence on opening track “Best Woman” (English) whose driving beat, focused horns, and intricate vocal melody recall the raucous intensity of Poly-Rythmo. But the deep funk of the title track turns out to be only a warm-up for album-highlight “Maimouna Cherie” (French), a moving expression of love and longing which kicks off with a hi-hat and wah-wah guitar workout, but shifts gears mid-way into a more concentrated and contemplative groove. The funk and Afrobeat gems on Best Woman are balanced by songs that draw upon Sato, one of the many Vodoun rhythms of Vincent’s native Benin. Side one concludes with “Vi Deka” (Mina), an epic slow-burner propelled by some of the record’s most soulful vocals, while album closer “Wa Do Verite Ton Noumi” (Fon) all but dares you not to lose yourself in its sublime hypnotic trance. Best Woman was released on Nigeria’s Hasbunalau Records in 1978, and original pressings are now highly-prized collector’s items. Reissued on Analog Africa’s Dance Edition imprint — newly mastered by Nick Robbins, cut by to vinyl by Frank Merritt at the Carvery, and approved by Vincent himself. 180 gram vinyl; Gatefold sleeve with liner notes and pictures; 30×60 inlay/poster.

File Under: African, Afrobeat, Funk
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Alessandro Alessandroni: Il Tempo Dello Spirito (Spettro) LP
Amongst the first bunch of this new label releases, we couldn’t miss a tribute to one of the greatest masters of libraries recordings, Alessandro Alessandroni, born in 1925. In his long career Alessandroni has published lots of soundtracks – and we mean lots of – and for this he’s considered a real star of Italian music. As a friend, and close collaborator of Ennio Morricone, he’s remembered as “the whistle man” for his fundamental contribution to the immortal scores of Sergio Leone’s movies. His class allowed him to range between genres and atmospheres, from beat to avant-garde, from funky to abstract compositions, always reaching and keeping the highest quality. This is immediately clear in “Il Tempo Dello Spirito”, originally published in 1971 for the meritorious Flirt label. It’s an album full of sacred music, gospel and spiritual, yet capable of personal flashes that make it interesting, particular and unique. Simple church songs? In some cases it may seems so – titles as Ave Maria, Gloria In Excelsis Deo, Pellegrinaggio or Messa Solenne do not leave much room for doubt and interpretations – but Alessandroni is able to astonish even in extreme cases like this. The best comes with songs like Il Peccato, Black Hallelujah, Deposizione, Elevazione and Concilio, in a crescendo of mysticism.

 File Under: Library, Gospel, Organ
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Antonia Arena & Fabio Fabor: Superman (Spettro) LP
1983, in the history of synths, is a key year. During the January edition of NAMM (the most important music fair in the US), indeed, MIDI – the standard protocol for electronic instruments interaction – was introduced to the world. Until then, programming and making synths work together was something practiced by a restricted elite of wizards, explorers armed with cables and analog patches, who could create new sonic worlds – but totally temporary, not replicable. Real superheroes of sonic synthesis, scientists of filters who, nowadays, are highly considered by musicians all over the world, after decades of forced exile. In Italy, the seeds of this tradition were planted in RAI’s Laboratory of Phonology (in Milan), in the middle of the 1950’s; later, pioneers like Piero Umiliani, Federico Monti Arduini (aka Il Guardiano Del Faro), Marcello Giombini, Giampiero Boneschi and Fabio Borgazzi (Fabio Fabor) introduced electronic music in pop. Fabor (together with Antonio Arena) is the protagonist of Superman, an album of library music released by the World label (owned by Minstrel group) in 1984. Borgazzi, born in 1920, lived through the whole saga of Italian easy listening music (from big orchestras to the digital revolution), always keeping up with the latest styles and trends. So it’s not a surprise, here, to see him using a LinnDrum and the first Japanes synths; and it’s perfectly natural to find some electro-funk touches (especially Rockit, by Herbie Hancock, which is a clear influence) between cosmic sounds and rock’n’roll songs – and, of course, here you will also find heavy traces of the typical dance pop of the era.

File Under: Library, Italian, Electronic
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The Astral Dimension: Galassia M81 (Spettro) LP
Fabio Borgazzi – aka Fabio Fabor – played literally every known style of music, from baroque to satanic electronic, in his library music albums released during his career which lasted almost seven decades. Born in Milan in 1920, Fabor was one of the great artisans of post-war Italian popular music. Author, arranger and conductor with a classical background, he started writing songs (in the 1950’s and 1960’s) for popstars such as Nilla Pizzi, Johnny Dorelli and Milva; he then turned to music for theatre, cinema and tv, to which he dedicated the rest of his career. In 1981, when he released Galassia M81, Fabor was a veteran in the scene of library music, both as an author and an editor. It was the so-called golden age for the genre, just a moment before the advent of MIDI – which made everything easier, but flatter too, putting an end to the Italian Touch. The tracks featured here (credited to the fictional combo The Astral Dimension: Fabor together with his friend Antonio Arena) still have a definite Seventies taste, reminding the wave of German kosmische musik (especially the Darmstad school), but they also reflect the Moog-mania raging in pop music after the big success of Walter/Wendy Carlos with the Switched On series. Avant-garde and kitsch hand in hand, ambient for documentaries and background music for horoscopes… all in sequence, with the only purpose of being used and generating royalties. Apparently there’s nothing poetic here, but the deepest core of this music is full of substance and genius, mixing a classical background with a futuristic twist – something that made so special a lot of the best music written in Italy during the 20th century.

File Under: Library, Italian, Electronic
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ayler

Albert Ayler: Prophecy (ESP) LP
ESP-Disk present a reissue of Albert Ayler’s Prophecy, originally released in 1975. Recorded in concert at the Cellar Cafe, NYC, June 14, 1964. Three weeks before this trio recorded ESP-Disk’s first jazz album, the epochal Spiritual Unity, it was captured “live” by Canadian poet Paul Haines, who also recorded the New York Eye and Ear Control soundtrack. This is one of the most influential groups in jazz history, a coming together of like-minded innovators who would be considered crucial influences by succeeding generations, so there is no question of the immense value of this material. Yoked, in the CD era, to the one-sided 1965 LP Bells, made with a different band in a very different style a year later, it is perhaps best appreciated on its own. Personnel: Albert Ayler – tenor saxophone; Gary Peacock – bass; Sunny Murray – drums; Paul Haines – engineer. Presented here on opaque yellow vinyl.

File Under: Free Jazz
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bacalov

Enriquez Luis Bacalov: La Seduzione (Sonor Music) LP
Sonor Music Editions present a reissue of La Seduzione, originally released in 1973. An Italian soundtrack holy grail and one of the most highly regarded scores by the majestic Oscar Award winning maestro Luis Enriquez Bacalov. This is the original soundtrack for the drama/erotic film of the same name directed by Fernando Di Leo and shot in beautiful Sicily, Italy. The music on La Seduzione totally destroys all his soundtrack productions with a big orchestra selection, featuring some of the best Italian grooves ever – terrific funk beats, mind-melting scats, Brazilian influenced music with loads of dope exotic vibes. A gigantic Italian music masterpiece finally available for the joy of collectors. Features compositions by I Ninhos Pega (“Tucumania” and “Pinha Tamburim”) and Rosa Balistreri (“Mi Votu E Mi Rivotu”). 180 gram vinyl; Edition of 500.

File Under: Library, Funk
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bpb

Bonnie “Prince” Billy: Best Troubador (Drag City) LP
With Best Troubador, Bonnie ‘Prince Billy pays homage to a long-time and forever hero, the late Merle Haggard. A singer who, some 25 years previously, first performed in public by playing a Merle Haggard song, Bonny has often cited Merle’s work in performance, on records and in conversation with anyone who was around, even talking to Merle himself for Filter magazine in 2009. Merle’s body of work was considered by Bonny for a record such as this for some time, but his passing in April of 2016 almost put a stop to it. The goal was to participate in the handing forward of the songs of a living legend, as Merle had done so many times in his own career. With Merle gone, some of the impetus of the project was in peril. A plan to make the album in Nashville studios was abandoned. The songs still called to be played again, however — and so sessions were endeavored at home, capturing feeling, memory and new expression in familiar confines with the full-hearted playing and singing of the Bonafide United Musicians: Van Campbell, Nuala Kennedy, Danny Kiley, Drew Miller, Cheyenne Mize, and Chris Rodahoffer, with special guests Mary Feiock, Emmett Kelly, A.J. Roach and Matt Sweeney. The songs sung on Best Troubador are pulled from all over — from Haggard’s third album in 1967 though to his 47th in 2011 — but this is no simple hits compilation. Capable only of occupying a shared space between himself and Merle Haggard, Bonny chose personal favorites, singing the songs he wanted to sing, to find Merle and himself together in the music. Dedicated to new life and old, Best Troubador is wistful and bittersweet and no lament at all,v but a tribute instead, for the triumph of a life spent in unending pursuit of the goal: new and expressive music, as our inspirations and heroes once sang it.

File Under: Folk, Country
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caretaker

The Caretaker: Everywhere at the End of Time – Stage 2 (HAFTW) LP
The second of six albums issued under the title Everywhere At The End Of Time, The Caretaker’s fictional first person account of life with early onset dementia, takes a more wistful tack as our protagonist gradually realizes that all is not well and begins to rummage deeper into the recesses of his memory, masking emotions of grief, loss, fear, and uncertainty by deeper dwelling in the recesses of a decaying mind. As The Caretaker’s short term memory functions begin to more rapidly erode, the loop-based punctuation of previous installments begin to subtly unravel, leading his mind to drift off and ponder fuller segments of tea dance strings and horns which appear uncannily more inviting, seductive, and now even more tangible than the abbreviated reels of earlier editions. Loop points wilt away in autumnal greys and russet rustles as new information becomes more difficult to process, back pedaling down memory lane toward an opaque smudge of half-forgotten/remembered spaces, places and un/familiar faces which provide more comfort and clarity than the world around him. It feels strange to recommend undergoing this experience, albeit in such an impressionistic and detached manner, but it somehow feels like a conversely enlightening one for these strange, disingenuous and unpredictable end times that we inhabit right now. Artwork by Ivan Seal. Mastered and cut by Lupo.

File Under: Ambient, Electronic
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Paolo Castiglione: Clouds (Spettro) LP
More than to reward the artistic ambitions of the artist, the majority of Library records were generally functional to sonorizations and conceived for a commercial use. So the main difficulty for the artist was to demonstrate his compositional versatility that allowed the use of his songs in different contests : documentaries, spaghetti western movies, television programs and dramas, news reports. “Clouds”, fourth chapter of this new and exciting Spettro series, is a classic library release in its purest form. Despite being credited solely Pasquale Castiglione, this is in effect a collaboration of the composer with Paolo Casa, here involved in arrangements and in conducting the orchestra. The two are less known respect to Umiliani, Alessandroni and Macchi, but they are surely worth of being rediscovered. Just listen to the super-classic eurofunk “Movimenti di Casa” to understand. “Clouds” was released in 1975 from the label Octopus. Amongst the songs clearly influenced by Ennio Morricone, you’re able to discover funk and jazz rock gems (“Chase” and “Games”), smooth and relaxed moments as in the lush title track, simple pop interludes (“Loneliness”) and even some experimental excursion similar to the ones of other “aquatic libraries” like in the song “Modern Expressions”.

File Under: Library, Jazz, Funk
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Conrado, Scuderi & Montanari: Bass Modulations (Spettro) LP
Released by Octopus in 1973 and now available for the first time on vinyl by Spettro, “Bass Modulations” is a record included in many “hip hop breakbeats” charts and it pays specific attention on bass – as title – and percussions. Composers are Antonino Scuderi, who worked on 2 tracks, ‘Overtime’, with low frequencies and a primitive drum machine, and ‘Range in’, one of the most strange track of this compilation, Roberto Conrado, Roman composer, already member of Gli Apostoli in the 60s, and Piero Romano Montanari, Roman, scores’ author (long-lasting collaboration with cult director Joe D’Amato), bass player and session-musician for many Italian pop stars as Renato Zero, Ivan Graziani, Pino Daniele, Sergio Caputo and Claudio Baglioni, just to name a few. “Bass Modulation” is an easy listening collection of tracks, with no experimental fit and lot of funky hooks and 70s rhythms and dynamics. ‘Likewise’ is a groovy gem, led by guitar, bass and synth; ‘Pledge’ hangs between light psych and flutes, while ‘Properly’ is another little masterpiece of this record, full of fuzz guitar and afro percussions. Just let the groove overwhelm you, every track is devoted to bass modulations.

File Under: Italian, Library, Funk, Groove
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constantine

Constantine: Day of Light (Not on Label) LP
Follow the sound of echoing flutes and sleeping bells; past the willows, far over the hill. Disappear on a journey down the forest path, where kings and magicians are hiding in the trees. Beware the darkness of the forest and enjoy the vibrant colors of the land; harpsichords and Mellotrons as your guide. Come wander til the day has vanished and a new day begins… Day of Light will lead you on a lysergic odyssey filled with Mellotron, harpsichord, sitar, studio effects & more. Fans of the 1969/70 dense, delicate and psychedelic acid folk sound need to get Day of Light into your ears!

File Under: Folk, Psych
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cortini

Alessandro Cortini & Merzbow: s/t (Important) LP
Alessandro Cortini (Nine Inch Nails) and Japanese noise legend Masami Akita (Merzbow) share a mutual love for the EMS Synthi, a British synthesizer from the early ’70s notorious for its patch matrix, portability, and distinct tone. Astonishingly, these two disparate artists meld into a single sound as they flex the analog circuitry of the EMS Synthi in new ways; giving this classic synth a modern workout and proving that, in capable hands, a 40-year-old analog synthesizer is a tool for the ages. Metallic shimmer print on heavy duty jackets; 180 gram vinyl.

File Under: Synth, Noise, Nine Inch Nails
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dangerdoom

Dangerdoom: The Mouse & The Mask (Metal Face) 3LP
Back in 2005, super producer Danger Mouse and masked hip hop supervillain Doom came together for The Mouse And The Mask, a collaborative album released under the name Dangerdoom. Among Doom’s most successful projects both critically and commercially, the album was inspired by Cartoon Network’s latenight Adult Swim programming slate, and includes appearances from several Adult Swim characters, including Aqua Teen Hunger Force, Space Ghost, Harvey Birdman, and more. The full 7-track 2006 Dangerdoom EP Occult Hymn is included, as well as two previously unreleased tracks, making this the definitive Dangerdoom collection.

File Under: Hip Hop
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faust

Faust: Fresh Air (Bureau B) LP
Faust’s new album Fresh Air differs in several respects from its predecessor, Just Us. The recordings were made at Jean-Hervé Péron’s rehearsal studio in Schiphorst in northern Germany, hypnotic pieces with the kind of noisemaking the band is known for. For the new album, Péron and Werner “Zappi” Diermaier were looking for communication with musician friends and the audience. The tracks were recorded in changing ensembles at changing locations in the USA (during a tour in 2016). In these community recordings, with friendly support from Péron’s database of field recordings, a strongly shaded noise music emerged which extends its feelers to the remotest corners of the here and now. Droning, swinging, lusting for freedom, here and there holding out quite stoically as machine-room blues. On board are the freely fabulous Barbara Manning in a live lecture, Jürgen Engler (Die Krupps) in overdub, and Ysanne Spevack as a wonderful wave-maker on the viola. The seven and a half minute title track begins with the poem by a French school friend of Péron (translated and recited in Polish) and ends in an industrial sound inferno. The singer cries for “Fresh Air” as if it is being taken away from him. Jean-Hervé Péron offers a political reading: “Can you breathe calmly here, or are we being poisoned?” “Engajouez Vous!” Péron presents this franco-Faustian artificial word to the audience and rewrites the Marseillaise for the here and now in the track “Chlorophyl”. And finally, Zappi has his mini-dada performance with “Schnobs” and “Bia”: a small dialect-based text piece, which starts with chlorophyl, goes over the meadow past the cow and lands with the farmer who drinks a beer and schnapps and suddenly sees two cows. The story of the band can tell that tale nicely. As Krautrockers, Faust had a worldwide career. On their first three albums in the early 1970s, they inhabited the vast field from improvisation to bricolage to rock’n’roll with the ease of rogues and the determination of declared sonic renegades. One can still feel the breathing of this music in current Faust pieces, in the stone-age thudding of “Fish”, which Faust anticipated in 1972 on “Mamie Is Blue”. “We let the music play through us,” says Jean-Hervé Péron. Jean-Hervé Péron has a little tip for us: Listen to the fish.

File Under: Krautrock
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fourth sensation

Fourth Sensation: s/t (Cinedelic) LP
Cinedelic Records present the first ever reissue of the sought after album Fourth Sensation, originally released in 1970. The band was formed by Ares Tavolazzi (I Giganti, Area) — who later was an active session musician as well as being a leading figure in the Italian jazz scene, accompanying Gil Evans, Steve Lacy, Max Roach, Lee Konitz, Phil Woods, Enrico Rava, Stefano Bollani, Franco D’Andrea, and many others — on guitar, Ellade Bandini on drums, keyboardist Vince Tempera — who, a few years later formed the progressive supergroup Il Volo with Mario Lavezzi and Alberto Radius and, in the late ’70s, composed a myriad of memorable TV and cartoon themes –, and Angelo Vaggi on bass. Musically, the project is precisely within the context of the year it was released, which coincided in Italy with the decline of the beat and the advent of the underground and psychedelic movements; in the Italian scene it inaugurated a trend of records of this type such as The Underground Set (1970), Blue Phantom’s 1971 album Distortions (KIS 4029CD), The Psycheground Group’s Psychedelic And Underground Music (1971), Silvano Chimenti’s Droga (1972) and others, still objects of worship by collectors worldwide. The composers of the songs are known to library music lovers, namely they are Stefano Torossi, Giuliano Sorgini, Massimo Catalano, and Sandro Brugnolini. Musically, it is undeniable the technical skill of the four interpreters in the ten tracks here, all curiously titled with the names of women, they are alternately a mix of acid blues, soul jazz, funk, and psychedelia, with the Hammond organ of Tempera in the foreground. Comes in a solid cardboard cover.

File Under: Library, Funk, Jazz, Psych
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fry

Mark Fry: Dreaming With Alice (Merlins Nose) LP
Merlins Nose Records present a reissue of Mark Fry’s Dreaming With Alice, originally released in 1972. Dreaming With Alice was already an obscurity by the time of its release. Recorded by a 19 year old Mark Fry for an Italian sub label of RCA, it presented a beautifully naive kind of psychedelic folk similar to what the Incredible String Band laid down at the same time just a bit more straight forwarded. Young Mark enchants his listeners with dreamy vocal melodies of utter beauty which create an outmost peaceful atmosphere. The picturesque tunes take the listener on a trip out to the English countryside, on a gentle and warm spring morning, and into a fairytale world. You might get lost within this colorful dream and not be willing to return to grey reality anymore, but this music burns as the flame of love within your heart. The direction, despite all psychedelic elements, is definitely determined by British folk music of the ’60s and ’70s. One charmingly odd aspect of the album is that the title track has been split up over the whole album as short sections flanking the longer tunes. Mark Fry plays his acid folk from the bottom of his soul without thinking about satisfying the demands of the mainstream audience. Dreaming With Alice is intriguing, keen, and absolutely one of a kind, with a mood changing from rainy days to sunny mornings out in the meadows. Original copies in good condition go for about 1600 Euros, so a reissue is welcome among fans of totally psyched-out music, with mostly acoustic instrumentation and vocals. A must have for all fans of acid folk from the late ’60s to the early ’70s era. RIYL: Perry Leopold, Incredible String Band, Steeleye Span, Woods Band, Pentangle.

File Under: Psych, Folk
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Full of Hell: Trumpeting Ecstasy (Profound Lore) LP
Maryland / Pennsylvania experimental death-noise band Full Of Hell have embarked on quite the journey leading up to the their latest full-length album Trumpeting Ecstasy, their most punishing, virulent, and dynamic work to date. The embryonic beginnings of Full of Hell displayed their palette at its most primitive: d-beat and blast-ridden hardcore punk, with spats of noise and caustic rhythm. After the release of their Profound Lore Records debut Full Of Hell & Merzbow in late 2014, their third full-length album, the band began to truly come into their own, combining elements of their previous sound with grindcore, death / black metal, sonically laden power electronics and industrial pounding. The band followed this up with a direct collaboration album with The Body and several EPs, one of them being their most-recent split 7-inch with Nails (which debuted on #2 on the Billboard Top 100 Singles Chart). The band builds upon their Merzbow collaboration and the releases succeeding it with this latest—going into God City Studios with Kurt Ballou at the production helm, the result is their best and strongest. Sky tearing and sonically cataclysmic, this aural deluge also features guest appearances by Aaron Turner (Sumac / Old Man Gloom / Mamiffer / Isis), Nate Newton (Converge / Old Man Gloom), Andrew Nolan (Column Of Heaven / The Endless Blockade), and Canadian singer/songwriter Nicole Dollanganger.

File Under: Metal
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gas

Gas: Narkopop (Kompakt) 3LP+CD/CD
In the body of work of Cologne artist Wolfgang Voigt – who, like few others, has informed, shaped and influenced the world of electronic music with countless different projects since the early 1990s – Gas stands out in particular, a saturnine sound cosmos based on heavily condensed classic sequences. Even after nearly 20 years, the sound of Gas doesn’t seem to have lost any of its luster, as shown by the commanding success of Kompakt’s fall 2016 re-release of the essential back catalogue as a box set. The overwhelming feedback from a loyal international fan community and worldwide media outlets attests once again to the sheer timelessness of Gas. Which is why it will feel like hardly a day has passed since the release of the last official album Pop nearly two decades ago in 2000, when Wolfgang Voigt resumes this specific creative path with the upcoming new full-length Narkopop. Even in the here and now, the unmistakable vibe of Gas immediately hits home, taking the listener on an otherworldly journey with the very first sounds, drawing them into an impervious sonic thicket, down to the depths of rapture and reverie. From wafts of dense symphonic mist emerges a floating and whirling feeling of weightlessness, before the listener steps into an eerily beautiful forest of fantasy, pulled in by the allure of a narcotic bass drum. While earlier Gas tracks were often based on the hypnotic effects of looping techniques, the ten new pieces on Narkopop unfold their magic in a more entwined manner, sometimes with the sonic might of an entire philharmonic orchestra, at times subtle and fragile. A main characteristic of Voigt’s oeuvre, the coalescence of seemingly contradictory stylistic aspects such as harmonious and atonal, concrete and abstract, light and heavy, near and far is also a decisive feature of Narkopop. In accordance with the transgressive spirit of his collective work, Voigt carries the aesthetic conceptions of his music over to the realm of the visual. Based on his abstract forest pictures, the Gas artwork addresses Voigt’s artistic affinity to romanticism and the forest as a place of yearning. For the first time, a closer look at the cover of Narkopop reveals signs of architectural fragments which hint at another, maybe parallel world behind Voigt’s forest. Truth is the prettiest illusion.

File Under:
 Electronic, Ambient, Techno
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imarc

I Marc 4: G.L.P. 1001 (Sonor Music) LP
Sonor Music Editions present a reissue of I Marc 4’s G.L.P. 1001, originally released in 1970. The first volume in the Nelson Records series by the infamous Italian Jazz quartet. A seminal, deep underground session by a legendary Italian library studio combo, equipped with tons of sleazy sounds. Psychedelic guitar riffs, crazy tough funk and sharp groovy beats, to lovely jazz-arranged theme music, all influenced by the samba, bossa nova, and easy listening vibes of the time. I Marc 4 provided some of the best cinematic and theme music of the late sixties and early ’70s, and this is one of their deepest productions. Top Italian library LP production. 180 gram vinyl; Edition of 500.

File Under: Library, Jazz, Funk, Groove
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imarc4

I Marc 4: G.L.P. 1002 (Sonor Music) LP
Sonor Music Editions present a reissue of I Marc 4’s G.L.P. 1002, originally released in 1970. G.L.P. 1002, marking their second record in the Nelson Records series, was the toughest session by the great I Marc 4 Italian jazz library combo. A killer album that is easily one of the top three albums from the Nelson Records series with no weak tracks at all. The music goes from insane psychedelic tunes to jazz, funk, and bossa and lounge tracks, with plenty of fuzz guitars, an amazing Hammond job, and totally catching drum breaks. An insane trip into early, golden Italian psychedelia and underground, with loads of laden beats and grooves, all with the mark of the legendary Italian quartet. Another essential jewel on Sonor Music Editions. 180 gram vinyl; Edition of 500.

File Under: Library, Jazz, Funk, Groove
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Modern Sound Quartet: Horoscope (Spettro) LP
Rome was, of course, the pulsating heart of Italian library music – it is the place where tv and movies are made, so editors and musicians tend to gather there. But we must not forget what was happening, at the same time, in Milan – where there was a very active music industry, but leaning more on the pop and jazz side. The Roman style was more connected to the classic and orchestral tradition, but the musicians in Milan adopted a more urban and international approach, in the vein of contemporary pop with some US jazz-funk instrumental deviations. It’s not a coincidence that among the most active artists in the library world we find people who – in the Seventies and Eighties – played in many records by Mina, Fabrizio De André, Gaber, Branduardi and Fausto Papetti. The quartet featuring pianist Oscar Rocchi, bassist Gigi Cappellotto, drummer Andy Surdi and guitarist Ernesto Verardi is behind many great library music albums, most of which released via the labels owned by Edizioni Minstrel. Horoscope was released in 1978, in a few hundred out of commerce copies, credited to Modern Sound Quartet (one of the many monikers used by the band), on Ring label. This album is a manifesto of the band’s style, using the concept of horoscope and zodiac signs to lay down a dozen of tracks perfectly reflecting their age: a good dose of disco (Lion, Aries, Sagittarius, Scorpion, Gemini), a hint of melodic pop (Virgin, Balance), a touch of prog (Fishes, Cancer), some light jazz-funk fusion (Capricorn) and b-movie atmospheres (Acquarius, Taurus).

File Under: Library, Italian, Disco, Jazz, Funk
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moore

Thurston Moore: Rock n Roll Consciousness (Caroline) LP
In tomorrow… Thurston Moore entered The Church studios in London to record new songs with producer Paul Epworth. Thurston, the founder of seminal US alternative rock experimentalists Sonic Youth and Paul, the celebrated producer and co-writer of Adele, The Pop Group, Florence & the Machine et al created a dynamic vibratory match (with the realization that they were both Leos, on the cusp of Cancer, born on July 25.) The session was mixed by Randall Dunn (Marissa Nadler, Sunn 0))), Earth, Boris) at Avast! Studios in Seattle. Thurston Moore Group had been touring since the critically acclaimed release The Best Day (2014, Matador) that introduced the core members James Sedwards (guitar), My Bloody Valentine’s Deb Googe (bass) and Sonic Youth’s Steve Shelley (drums). Rock n Roll Consciousness is Thurston’s focus on this group’s strength, beauty and promise, with an unleashing of Sedwards’ brilliant guitar play, Googe’s minimalist groove ethic and Shelley’s in-the-pocket swing dynamism. The songs Thurston introduces here are expansive, anthemic and exploratory with lyrics, co-written with poet Radio Radieux, investigating and heralding the love between angels, goddess mysticism and a belief in healing through new birth. They range from the opener “Exalted,” an unfolding and emotional journey in homage to sacred energy and exaltation, to “Cusp” a springtime charging, propulsive piece with a feeling of Sonic Youth mixing in with My Bloody Valentine to “Turn On” a pop-sonic poem to holy love both intimate and kosmiche to the contemplative mystery of life-defining time travel in “Smoke of Dreams.” The record concludes with “Aphrodite,” a strange and heavy no wave rocker in salutation to the idol of love, beauty, pleasure, and procreation. Rock n Roll Consciousness is a new and exhilarating chapter for Thurston Moore, and promises to be a creative highpoint for anyone interested in his legacy of avant-garde music and writing, as strong a statement as anything he has recorded these last three decades – serious and precocious and strangely accessible.

File Under: Indie Rock
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mpunga

Denis Mpunga & Paul K: Criola (Music From Memory) LP
A mini LP of works by Denis Mpunga and Paul K., all recorded between 1980-1984. Combining elements of traditional African music with experimental electronics, the Belgian/Congolese duo released only a handful of tracks, scattered across a few rare LP and cassette compilations that were put out in the mid-eighties by obscure European labels. This release also includes a few previously unreleased songs that were found on the original master tapes. Relocating with his family from the Congo to Belgium in 1973 at the young age of 13, Denis Mpunga grew up in Liege and quickly became deeply embedded in its musical scene, forming the group Gomma Percussions in 1979; a percussive group driven by West African influences. A side project Eko-Kuango formed by the Gomma Percussion members also saw the release in 1985 of the now much sought after 12″ Fura (1986), which also includes Denis Mpunga on vocals. Denis has continued to produce and compose music, perhaps most notably writing the soundtrack for the Dardenne brothers’s La Promesse (1996). Patrick Stas, who would release with Denis under the “Paul K.” moniker, was a well-known local musician in Liege and considered something of a luminary figure in the electronic and experimental music scene in Belgium. Patrick would set up the independent cassette and vinyl label Home Produkt. Both well-known figures in Liege’s music scene, the two of them would join forces in 1980 to work together on a soundtrack for a children’s animation company called CAMERA etc, recording the Intermezzo tracks which are included here. Keen to experiment further as a duo, Denis would propose the idea of combining some more traditional songs or percussive African elements with Patrick’s experiments with drum computers and synthesizers. Working around more conventional instruments such as guitar and bass, Denis would also bring balafons, senzas, and a zither to their recordings whilst Patrick would work with an array of synthesizers and drum machines, such as the Roland MC 202, TB 303, and TR 808, and the Korg MS20 and Monopoly. The recordings set out to play with and challenge preconceptions and expectations of African music and African culture. Together, Denis Mpunga and Paul K.’s, if somewhat brief, musical adventure would create a fascinating new musical language: African music born out of an industrial European landscape. 180 gram vinyl.

File Under: African, Electronic, Experimental
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SPL10

New Sound Quartet: Crazy Colours (Spettro) LP
Rome was, of course, the pulsing heart of Italian library music – it is the place where tv and movies are made, so editors and musicians tend to gather there. But we must not forget what was happening in the library music world, at the same time, in Milan – where there was a very active music industry, but leaning more on the pop and jazz side. The Roman style was more connected to the classic and orchestral tradition, but the musicians from Milan adopted a more urban and international approach, in the vein of contemporary pop with some US jazz-funk instrumental deviations. It’s not a coincidence that among the most active artists in the library world we find people who – in the Seventies and Eighties – played in many records by Mina, Fabrizio De André, Gaber, Branduardi and Fausto Papetti. The quartet featuring pianist Oscar Rocchi, bassist Gigi Cappellotto, drummer Andy Surdi and guitarist Ernesto Verardi is behind many great library music albums from the golden age, most of which released via the labels owned by Edizioni Minstrel. Crazy Colours (originally marketed in 1979 via BAM label, credited to the New Sound Quartet), is quite a big effort for a library music album, since it features a whole orchestra to back the quartet and soloist Hugo Heredia (always present on sax and flute in the albums by the four musicians). In these eight tracks, orchestral disco music is the main focus: in the vein of late Seventies, the biggest influences are to be found in Quincy Jones and Barry White. But the future is already there, since a few synths can be heard in the mix. To this landscape, Rocchi, Cappellotto, Surdi and Verardi add their personality, their experience in the pop field and the love for jazz – all with that peculiar Italian feel.

File Under: Library, Disco, Jazz
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SP02

Bruno Nicolai: Femmine Insaziabili (Spettro) LP
Second release from the vaults of Spettro and another classic Italian gem of the late Sixties, a wonderful score from the genius of Bruno Nicolai, renowned for his long collaboration with Ennio Morricone and for countless and beautiful works for tv and cinema. Femmine insaziabili – also known as Carnal Circuit – is a 1969 Alberto De Martino giallo flick (with a young Romina Power) whose best part is without doubt the original soundtrack. With the help of the voice of the sublime Edda Dell’Orso, Nicolai delivers an amazing Italian giallo soundtrack, regarding an “insatiable female” as the title suggests, full of beat sound, orchestral landscapes, unbelievable themes and at least two or three classics like I Want It All (two versions, the instrumental ones being the best), I tuoi sospiri and Nostalgia di un incontro – some of the finest examples of Nicolai’s penchant for wordless female vocals in an instrumental setting.

File Under: OST, Library
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tempo

Bruno Nicolai: Tempo Sospeso (Cinedelic) LP
Cinedelic Records present a reissue of Bruno Nicolai’s Tempo Sospeso, originally released in 1975. Bruno Nicolai was a leading figure in the world of Italian soundtracks although he is primarily known for being the most important of Ennio Morricone’s collaborators and his orchestra conductor in the period of Morricone’s greatest productions in the ’60s and ’70s. But Nicolai’s solo works are certainly not of lesser artistic relevance. Tempo Sospeso (“Suspended Time”) is one of the most representative albums in the sense that it was produced by Nicolai in 1975 without any filters or restrictions, in the period of his greatest artistic maturity. The style of his thriller soundtracks of the time, such as 1971’s The Night Evelyn Came Out Of The Grave, 1972’s The Red Queen Kills Seven Times and Your Vice Is A Locked Room And Only I Have The Key, and 1975’s Eyeball, is evident here, as well as the vibe of the “electrified” western, thanks largely to the acid fuzz guitar of Alessandro Alessandroni. The instrumentation is varied and the maestro plays piano, harpsichord, organ, and synth. What is presented here is library music that is definitely above average. The new graphic design of this edition was created by Daniel Martin Diaz from Tucson, Arizona, known for his symbolist works that have been published in The LA Times, NY Times, Juxtapoz, High Fructose, and Low Rider Magazine, as well as four of his own art books. Inside the LP is a postcard/photo of maestro Nicolai, a portrait in front of his Moog. Comes in a solid cardboard cover.

File Under: Library, OST, Italian
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bobs

OST: Bob’s Burgers (Sub Pop) 3LP
Bob’s Burgers premiered on the Fox network January 2011, and quickly became one of the most watched series on television. After enjoying the highest-rated new season premiere of the 2010-11 season, Bob’s Burgers quickly settled into an average viewership of over 4 million per episode. The show has won an Emmy award and been nominated five times, including a current nomination for Outstanding Animated Program. It has inspired many popular spinoff items, including a recent, best-selling cookbook. With the seventh season currently in progress, Bob’s Burgers’ cultural influence only grows. Now comes The Bob’s Burgers Music Album, featuring 109 songs from the first 107 episodes (all six existing seasons), plus five special cover versions of songs from the show. Originally broadcast within the episodes – and often in abbreviated form – these songs appear here in their freestanding glory for the first time. The Bob’s Burgers Music Album – in both its standard edition and its impressive deluxe edition – is sure to be a must-have for any fan of the show (and, really, any sentient life-form). The album features the main cast members – Bob (Jon Benjamin) and Linda (John Roberts) and their children Tina (Dan Mintz), Gene (Eugene Mirman) and Louise (Kristen Schaal) – singing original songs that build on the show’s unique sense of humor. Also featured are many of the show’s recurring and special guests, from comedians like Aziz Ansari, Sarah Silverman, Kevin Kline, Bill Hader, Zack Galifianakis, and Fred Armisen, to musical guests Cyndi Lauper and Carly Simon. Includes five never-aired “Bob’s Buskers” cover versions of songs from the show performed by St. Vincent, The National, Lapsley, and Stephin Merritt of Magnetic Fields.

File Under: OST, Indie Rock

fight

OST: Fight Club (Mondo) LP
Mondo are proud to present the soundtrack to Fight Club on vinyl for the first time in over 15 Years. The Dust Brothers only film score to date, Fight Club is arguably one of the most enjoyable soundtrack albums to come out of the 90’s and part of that has to do with the fact that it is one of the best sequenced scores of all time. Weaving all of the films cues from the film into 16 songs, the album winds up feeling like the best instrumental Trip-Hop album you’ve never heard. Buy it, or you will be incomplete. But be warned, this album is not beautiful, clean or perfect. It is not Mint, or even VG+. It is Fair at best. Just like you. You are not your record collection.

File Under: OST, Mondo
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girl with

OST: The Girl With All The Gifts (Death Waltz) LP
We are absolutely thrilled to finally work with composer Cristobal Tapia de Veer. His work on the UK TV show Utopia is one of our most played records of the last few years, and he is surely one of the most original and unique voices in the world of soundtracks of the last decade. The fact that we get to work with him on one of THE best zombie films in years is the icing on the cake. Breathing new life into a stale genre is so hard to do, but The Girl with All the Gifts turns the genre on its head, managing to be intelligent, thrilling, scary and funny without sacrificing the gore or characterization. De Veer’s score is haunting, beautiful and so multi-layered I still haven’t tired of it after six months of constant listening. This truly is one of the best scores of 2017.

File Under: OST, Horror, Death Waltz
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silent hill

OST: Silent Hill (Mondo) LP
Set in the eponymous town of Silent Hill, you play as Harry Mason after a car crash leaves you stranded and searching for his missing adopted daughter, Cheryl. But this town is not what it seems, and Harry quickly discovers that his daughter’s disappearance may be a connected to the town’s mysterious cult activity. Mondo is proud present the premiere Vinyl release of the soundtrack to the haunting, original Playstation title Silent Hill. Don’t let the tone of the plucky mandolin driven opening track fool you, this is one of the most haunting soundtracks we’ve ever released. Full of hair-raising, pulse-pounding, industrial cues – this soundtrack is the stuff of nightmares – which is important, since Silent Hill (and its subsequent sequels) has it’s feet planted firmly in the legacy of survival horror gaming.

File Under: OST, Horror, Video Games

pancrace

Pancrace: s/t (Penultimate Press) LP
Penultimate Press present the debut recording from French outfit Pancrace. Music for pipe organ Stiehr-Mockers 1848, bird calls, baroque violin, tin whistle, boîtes à bourdons, landscape piano, motorized bow, Standuino Pi synth, microphones, hurgy toys, AM radio, church bells, uilleann pipes, and hulusi. Pancrace is an improvising quintet comprising French, British, and Austrian performers. The members include Prune Bécheau, Arden Day, Julien Desailly, Léo Maurel, and Jan Vysocky. Pancrace is also the name of the church in Dangolsheim Alsace located next to where the instrument inventor Léo Maurel lives. Maurel makes ingeniously designed instruments inspired by the hurdy gurdy. The recording emerged from a disruption of the traditional elements within the church, namely the church organ which was prepared inside out whilst the performers challenged its gregarious authority with an array of constructed and modified instruments. On Pancrace, one can hear many of these shape-shifting instruments and devices being twiddled without quite knowing which are bowed, plucked, hammered, or rubbed. The results are a maelstrom of sound and song which see-saw between the harrowing and the sublime with incredible detail to sonic content. Pancrace instigates proceedings in the confinement of an organ; a cyclops puffing its continuous and raucous breath only to be woken by instruments who, like horseflies, mischievously start tormenting proceedings with microtones and striated polyrhythms. The journey ends four sides later with the language of the birds imposing an unadorned silence on the church. Edition of 500.

File Under: Ambient, Drone
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SPL07

Oscar Rocchi & Tullio De Piscopo: Metamorphosis (Spettro) LP
The early Eighties marked a transition in popular music, especially for a generation of musicians (still heavily influenced by the previous decade) trying to assimilate the changes in aesthetics and technology which were occurring. Disco music is dead, so is prog, synths are still too expensive and unreliable, jazz is lost somewhere and the term fusion has become really popular. This the environment in which this album – released in 1981 by library music label Ring – was recorded by a bunch of jazz players and session men from the Milan area, led by pianist Oscar Rocchi and world famous drummer Tullio De Piscopo (respectively credited for seven and four tracks of the album). The stellar line-up features bass player Julius Farmer (from New Orleans), guitarist Sergio Farina, Argentinean sax and flute player Hugo Heredia and Cicci Santucci (trumpet and saxcorn). Metamorphosis is not the typical fragmented collection – something pretty common in the world of library music; this is a body of heterogeneous songs with a common ground, a solid body of work (which would surely fit in De Piscopo’s and Rocchi’s personal discographies). The genre is fusion, still positively influenced by jazz-funk (no muzak effect here!) but also following the impulse to experiment typical of the most progressive jazz-rock. De Piscopo is in top shape (it’s not a coincidence that, in 1981, Vai Mo by Pino Daniele was also released), sporting a bit less exuberant style of playing compared to his jazz albums of the same period – so he sounds really effective and sharp. With Farmer (who was playing with Dr. John and Professor Longhair before moving to Italy) he makes one of the best rhythm sections of Italian music of the Seventies and Eighties (if you’re not convinced, just listen to Carta Straccia and America Good-Bye, two amazing pop albums with a funk soul).

File Under: Library, Italian, Jazz, Funk
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roelens

Puccio Roelens: La Musica Di Puccio Roelens (Sonor Music) LP
Sonor Music Editions present a reissue of La Musica Di Puccio Roelens, originally released in 1969. This album by the great maestro and orchestra conductor Puccio Roelens, who’s responsible for some for the funkiest productions made in Italy, is considered a legendary album among Italian library junkies and Euro groove hunters. Music swings from jazz to funk and psychedelia, with loads of terrific beats, laden grooves, and top breakbeats simply to die for. Breathtaking psychedelic jazz arrangements, lounge funk tunes, catchy bossa, and terrific drums groove. One of the most desired items of the genre is finally available. Holy Grail Alert! 180 gram vinyl; Edition of 500.

File Under: Library, Italian, Jazz, Funk, Psych
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SPL01

Ruscigan: Disagio Sociale (Spettro) LP
Ruscigan is Guido Baggiani, neapolitan composer and trumpet player & Piero Umiliani, one of the most important Masters in Italian music, author of dozens of soundtracks and library recordings. “Disagio Sociale” was always considered as Umiliani’s solo work, even though it’s not part of his detailed and official discography as, i.e., “Viaggio nel domani”. Despite all the mystery and the discomfort of not knowing, the re-release of “Disagio sociale” is now available for the first time on vinyl. Title songs were and still are actual and prophetics: ‘Disoccupazione’ (unemployement), ‘Classe operaia’ (working class) (yes, but which one now?), ‘Campagne abbandonate’ (forsaken farmlands), ‘Casa di riposo’ (rest home), ‘Riformatorio’ (Reformatory), speak about Italy in the ‘70s, outdated yet still existing. Moods and textures belong to those years – we are in 1971, when ’68 political echoes still resound in citizens’ ears and minds. The Morriconian’s and almost western theme of ‘Movimento sindacale’ (labour movement) stands for redemption and labor and human rights, but melancholy and frustration are the main concepts of the album, highlighted by flutes and acoustic guitars (‘Casa di riposo’, unhappy starting from the title, and the two versions of ‘Riformatorio’). The strange experimental intermezzo in ‘Mano d’opera’ (manpower) is just an interlude, leading the listener to the last song “Coscienza di classe’ (class consciousness), expression of the social distress this record refers to. “Disagio Sociale” is a rare and beautiful album and it’s important that’s the first release of the newborn Italian label Spettro.

File Under: Italian, Library
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stapleton

Chris Stapleton: From A Room Vol 1 (Mercury) LP
In tomorrow… Chris Stapleton will follow up his Grammy Award-winning, double platinum 2015 debut Traveller with not one but two albums in 2017. From A Room: Volume 1 will be issued in May while second installment From A Room: Volume 2 will appear later in the year. The album takes its name from Nashville’s historic RCA Studio A, where it was recorded during the winter of 2016-2017. Once again produced by Grammy Award-winning producer Dave Cobb, Volume 1 features eight original songs as well as a rendition of “Last Thing I Needed, First Thing This Morning” written by Gary P. Nunn and Donna Sioux Farar and made famous by Willie Nelson. Other highlights include “Second One To Know” which Stapleton recently premiered at the 52nd Annual Academy of Country Music Awards as well as the album’s first single, “Either Way.” In addition to Stapleton on vocals and guitar and Cobb on acoustic guitar, the album features Morgane Stapleton on harmony vocals as well as longtime band-members J.T. Cure on bass and Derek Mixon on drums and musicians Mickey Raphael on harmonica, Robby Turner on pedal steel and Mike Webb on keys. “I’m real proud of this record,” Stapleton exclaimed at a record release party at RCA Studio A in Nashville, TN. “We made it right here in (RCA Studio A) like the last one. We camped out in here…and had a lot of fun recording things.”

File Under: Country
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sugar

Sugar: Copper Blue (Demon) 3LP
Late UK RSD…. 2017 is the 25th anniversary of Copper Blue, the Top 10 debut album by American alternative rock band Sugar. In 1992 NME voted it Album Of The Year, and it was also included in the book ‘1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die’. This limited edition reissue includes the classic album and a double LP of ‘Live At The Cabaret Metro, 1992’. The live show has never been available before on vinyl. Format: 3LP Gatefold on silver, gold & blue coloured vinyl.

File Under: Alternative Rock
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ugly things

Ugly Things #44
“Our headline stories this time include a candid, in-depth new interview with Dean Torrence of Jan & Dean, and a feature of ’60s Southern rock ‘n’ soul heroes The Uniques. We also reveal the stories of Sloan & Barri pop protégés The Thomas Group, Australian shock rocker Geoff Crozier, Swedish R&B long-hairs Sooner Or Later and New York garage teens Johnny Farfisa & The Individuals. Meanwhile Mike Medina delves into the mystery of drumming genius Eddie Hoh, who played with MFQ, the Monkees, the Mamas & the Papas and others before disappearing into night and fog at the end of the sixties. Our story about Southern California garage psych cult heroes Things To Come concludes, and Hunter Bennett interviews Tony Kinman of The Dils and Rank & File. Plus much more, including a new installment in Cyril Jordan’s ongoing Flamin’ Groovies saga, and our extensive review sections, the ultimate consumers’ guide to all the latest vinyl and CD reissues and rock’n’roll-related books.”

File Under: Magazines, Reading

vink

Jaap Vink: s/t (Recollection GRM) LP
“The Institute of Sonology in Utrecht has earned its international reputation mostly for pioneering work in the field of computer-assisted algorithmic composition and digital sound synthesis by composers such as Gottfried Michael Koenig, Werner Kaegi, Paul Berg, and Barry Truax. Anyone familiar with the music of these composers would have to admit that even within this ‘genre’ there were no stylistic dogmas. The stylistic range of the Institute’s artistic output becomes even broader when the work of other staff and frequent guests is taken into account, for example the compositions based on field recordings and audio-visual projects by Frits Weiland, the radiophonic works and pieces for tape and instruments by Luctor Ponse, the cybernetic tape compositions by Roland Kayn, or the experiments with computer graphics by Peter Struycken, to name just a few. And then there was Jaap Vink. Jaap Vink studied engineering at first, but then became interested in electronic music. He attended courses in electroacoustics at Delft University of Technology and installed a pedagogical studio for electronic music in 1961 at the Gaudeamus Foundation . . . Jaap Vink always tried to break out of the periodicity of the sounds so abundantly available in the electronic music studio. Although his music was entirely produced with purely electronic sound material, its textures resemble the richness of orchestral sounds, or large natural sound-complexes, as a result of recursive processes. The density of this sound material increases and decreases by careful control of feedback networks with configurations of analog tape recorders (delay lines), filters, and modulators. It should come as no surprise that his work is being rediscovered at a time when a new generation of musicians has conquered the stage with modular synthesizer setups and ‘no-input mixers’, in which feedback of audio and control signals plays an important role. And although Jaap Vink’s music wasn’t performed live but produced and recorded on magnetic tape in the studio, it is exactly the human interaction with feedback processes that connects his work with the current generation of live electronic music performers. To some extent Jaap Vink’s pieces are indeed recorded live improvisations, and extending his patches and ‘rehearsing’ with them was an ongoing process. . . . The selection presented here gives an overview of Jaap Vink’s works made in Utrecht, ranging from his first composition Screen up to Tide 85.” –Kees Tazelaar Works selected by: François Bonnet and Kees Tazelaar.

File Under: Early Electronic

weaver

Jane Weaver: Modern Kosmology (Fire) LP
Modern Kosmology sees Jane Weaver’s melodic-protagonist channeling new depths of creative cosmic energy within. After the huge critical acclaim of 2012’s Fallen By Watchbird, followed by 2015’s exploratory Silver Globe LP winning her unanimous “record of the year accolades” and hefty measures of radio play-listing Jane Weaver’s conceptual trajectory has sent her neo-kosmische penchants to the point of no-return. Jane Weaver’s unwaning yearning for psychoactive pop energy has just reached a new level of magnetism. As snowclones go, Modern Kosmology is the new Silver. Another Spectrum to add to the tension. Jane Weaver also announces a short run of album launch shows in the UK this May, ahead of more extensive UK and European touring to be announced later in the year.

File Under: Kosmische, Pop
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brown acid4

Various: Brown Acid: Fourth Trip (Riding Easy) LP
If you thought we were getting close to the end of the Brown Acid series with our last Trip, you were dead wrong…we’re only just getting rolling. The well of privately released hard rock, heavy psych, and proto-metal 45s is deep and we are nowhere near tapped out.  Most of these records were barely released and never properly distributed so they ain’t easy to find, but they’re out there if you’re willing to dig…and we aren’t afraid to get our hands dirty.  Hard calluses have formed from handling the shovel and we’ve sifted through a lot of dirt, but we’ve dug up another ten tremendous records to share with all the heavy heads out there.  This volume brings together eight insanely rare and skull-crushingly heavy 45s as well as two previously unreleased bangers. You may remember the Zekes’ jaw dropper “Box” from the First Trip.  If you don’t, you better go back and refresh your memory, you stoner.  That song rips!  And so does this previously unheard recording we legally obtained from the Beverly Hills records vaults.  “Comin Back” is the longest tune we’ve yet to include on this series and it’s a full-on rager!  The only surviving copy of this recording came to us on the original 1/4” master tape from  Hollywood’s long-defunct Demars & Duffy Music.  We did our best to preserve the recording and we think you’ll appreciate the rawness. There have been numerous groups named Bad Axe over the years, but the one you hear here is the baddest.  This five-piece fresh outta high school kicked out this jam (and a few others) in a Chicago studio in 1973 just for the hell of it.  As a garage band, they were previously named The Burlington Express and they went on to be known as Bitch, but these dudes hit their stride as Bad Axe and “Coachman” is their crowning achievement.  It went completely unreleased until 2014 when Permanent Records issued it and “Poor Man, Run” as a limited edition 45 with a killer picture sleeve.  It’s long out-of-print and only obtainable now on Brown Acid. The rest of the records included on this volume vary in rarity, but at least two of them were virtually unknown until we discovered them.  You’ll win the lottery before you find copies of all of the original 45s in even the best record stores.  Many of the records included in this volume are owned only by the members of the bands and some of the band members don’t even have personal copies.  That’s just how hard these guys hit it back in the day!  We’re lucky some of these guys are still alive and well enough to give us permission to use their masters. And for that, we thank them.  And you, for all your support.  Brown Acid is here to stay…as long as you’ll have us.  Plug in, turn up, and freak out…this is what RocknRoll is all about.

File Under: Rock, Psych

mono

Various: Mono No Aware (Pan) LP
Mono No Aware is the first compilation to be released on PAN, collating unreleased ambient tracks from both new and existing PAN artists. Featuring Jeff Witscher, Helm, TCF, Yves Tumor, M.E.S.H., Pan Daijing, HVAD, Kareem Lotfy, ADR, Mya Gomez, Sky H1, James K, Oli XL, Bill Kouligas, Flora Yin-Wong, Malibu, and AYYA, the compilation moves through more traditional notions of what is called “ambient”, to incorporating wider variations that fall under the term. “Mono no aware”, “the pathos of things”, also translates as “an empathy toward things”, or “a sensitivity to ephemera”. A term for the awareness of impermanence, or the transience of things. A meditation on mortality and life’s transience, ephemerality heightens the appreciation of beauty and sensitivity to their passing. In investigating the passing of time, the boundaries between memory and hallucination become blurred; between fiction and reality. The movement of time transforms into an eternal present. James K’s “Stretch Deep” features Eve Essex. Features photography by Molly Matalon; Design by Bill Kouligas. Mastered and cut by Rashad Becker at Dubplates & Mastering.

File Under: Ambient, Electronic
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…..Restocks…..

Joshua Abrams: Simultonality (Eremite) LP
Alabama Shakes: Boys & Girls (ATO) LP
Antibalas: s/t (Daptone) LP
TL Barrett: Like A Ship… (Light in the Attic) LP
Black Mountain: In The Future (Jagjaguwar) LP
Karen Dalton: In My Own Time (Light in the Attic) LP
Del: I Wish My Brother George Was Here (Traffic) LP
Fleet Foxes: s/t (Sub Pop) LP
Fleet Foxes: Helplessness Blues (Sub Pop) LP
Frost/Bjarnason: Solaris (Bedroom Community) LP
Serge Gainsbourg/Jane Birkin: s/t (Light in the Attic) LP
Mort Garson: Plantasia (Great Thunder) LP
Lee Hazlewood: Cowboy in Sweden (Light in the Attic) LP
Karen Krog: Don’t Just Sing (Light in the Attic) LP
La Femme: Psycho Tropica Brazil (Bornbad) LP
La Femme: Mystere (Bornbad) LP
Clara Mondshine: Luna Africana (Great Thunder) LP
Monks: Black Monk Time (Light in the Attic) LP
Morphine: Cure for Pain (Modern Classics) LP
Picchio Dal Pozzo: s/t (Goodfellows) LP
Public Image LTD.: First Issue (Light in the Attic) LP
Arthur Russell: Calling Out of Context (Audika) LP
Shocking Blue: At Home (Music on Vinyl) LP
Elliott Smith: Either/Or (Kill Rock Star) LP
This Heat: S/t (Modern Classics) LP
Virgo Four: Resurrection (Rush Hour) LP
Wipers: Is This Real (Jackpot) LP
Wipers: Over The Edge (Jackpot) LP
Wipers: Youth of America (Jackpot) LP
Yamasuki: Le Monde Fabuleux (Great Thunder) LP
Various: Africa Airways 1 (Africa Seven) LP
Various: Africa Airways 2 (Africa Seven) LP
Various: Hillbillies in Hell 2 (Iron Mountain) LP
Various: I Am The Center (Light in the Attic) LP

…. and much much more…..

Tagged , , , , , , ,

…..news letter #779 – rip the axe…..

Another slim week, although I suppose a bunch of random, unexpected things could show up tomorrow. We’ve been getting lots of choice used LPs through lately, so I took advantage of the short list and gave some highlights of some recently priced used goodies to whet your appetite. Next week promises to have some wonderful new releases, although I can tell you already, the FIRE WALK WITH ME reissue is going to be late, but it’s coming.

…..pick of the week…..

sleep

…..new arrivals…..

diamond

David Bowie: Diamond Dogs (Parlophone) LP
Driven by an entirely deeper dynamic than most pop artists, David Bowie inhabited a very special world of extraordinary sounds and endless vision. Unwilling to stay on the treadmill of rock legend and avoiding the descent into ever demeaning and decreasing circles of cliché Bowie continually evolved blurring genres and identities while remaining artistically radical and relevant throughout his trailblazing career. Bowie’s first album of original material since killing off Ziggy Stardust, 1974’s Diamond Dogs was conceptually built off of George Orwell’s dystopian classic 1984, brimming with tension and angst which stood in stark contrast to the disco music that was beginning to crowd the airwaves. It also displayed hints of Bowie’s interest in the music he heard in America. However, authentic soul with a unique UK perspective meant this was far from being a homage. Propelled by the signature single “Rebel Rebel,” Diamond Dogs hit the No. 1 spot in the U.K. and served as Bowie’s big breakthrough in the U.S. where it climbed into the Top 5.

File Under: Rock
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nassauDavid Bowie: Live Nassau Coliseum ’76 (Parlophone) LP
Driven by an entirely deeper dynamic than most pop artists, David Bowie inhabited a very special world of extraordinary sounds and endless vision. Unwilling to stay on the treadmill of rock legend and avoiding the descent into ever demeaning and decreasing circles of cliché Bowie continually evolved blurring genres and identities while remaining artistically radical and relevant throughout his trailblazing career. Recorded live at the Nassau Coliseum Uniondale, NY on March 23, 1976, this double album is the official document of the Isolar/Station To Station tour. Known to fans for many years as the Thin White Duke double album bootleg (among various other titles), the record didn’t get an official release for over thirty years, when it was finally issued as part of the Station To Station deluxe set in September 2010. The bridge between Bowie’s plastic soul days and the Brian Eno infused Berlin trilogy, Live Nassau Coliseum ’76 captures top flight performance of songs from such landmark albums as Hunky Dory (“Changes,” “Queen Bitch,” “Life On Mars?”), Ziggy Stardust (“Five Years,” “Suffragette City”), Aladdin Sane (“Panic in Detroit,” “The Jean Genie”), Diamond Dogs (“Rebel Rebel,” “Diamond Dogs”) and the most recently released Station To Station (“Station to Station,” “Word on a Wing,” “Stay,” “TVC15”).

File Under: Rock
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stationDavid Bowie: Station to Station (Parlophone) LP
“The return of The Thin White Duke…” So begins David Bowie’s tenth studio album, 1976’s Station To Station. In part influenced by his role in Nicolas Roeg’s film The Man Who Fell To Earth, ever the innovator, Bowie became the character The Thin White Duke; a composite, part his character from the film, alien Thomas Jerome Newton, part Buster Keaton and part European cabaret artist. After the release of 1975’s soul and funk-inspired Young Americans, Bowie and the album’s guitarist Carlos Alomar, Earl Slick (guitar), the E-Street Band’s Roy Bittan (piano), Dennis Davis (drums), George Murray (bass) and Warren Peace (backing vocals) entered Cherokee Studios in Los Angeles to record its follow up. Touching on his love of German electronic bands, American R&B and even film music plus the talents of his American band, Bowie crafted an album drawing on both European and American sensibilities; a transition between his recent Plastic Soul period and what would become his re-acquaintance with European culture when he moved to Berlin the following year. The opening 10-minute title track leaves the listener in no doubt that another ground-breaking Bowie transformation is taking place. From the sound of a moving train and two-note intro, through the introduction and intention of The Thin White Duke – taking in Crowley, Cocaine and Kabbalah and Romanticism – the song is a piece of paranoid and dislocated electronic-funk. This is followed by the distinctive UK and US Top 10 single “Golden Years,” which hints at the funk and soul of his previous album. “Word On A Wing” is the first of the album’s two ballads, with a decidedly Christian theme – a song which in later years Bowie said was something of a cry for help. The back-to-back “TVC15” and “Stay” provide the album with a funkier feel, the former having said to have been influenced by being sprawled in front of a dozen TV monitors and a dream about a girlfriend being eaten by a TV set. A great admirer of Nina Simone’s version of the song, the album’s second ballad and final track is a cover of Dimitri Tiomkin and Ned Washington’s ballad “Wild Is The Wind,” generally considered an inspired and classic Bowie vocal performance. Station To Station was a top 5 success in the U.K. and U.S. It would, as many authorities said, divide the decade for Bowie. He thereafter left the US for Berlin with Iggy Pop and embarked on a journey which saw the creation of his seminal Berlin Trilogy, as well as playing a major role in Iggy’s acclaimed The Idiot and Lust For Life albums.

 File Under: Rock
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young

David Bowie: Young Americans (Parlophone) LP
1975’s Young Americans spent almost a year on the U.S. charts, peaking at No. 9 on Billboard’s Albums chart, while its single “Fame” hit No. 1 on the Pop Singles chart. Bowie’s Diamond Dogs had cracked the U.S. Top 5 the previous year, so while Young Americans was not the album that initially broke Bowie in America, it was certainly the one that aligned him with Rod Stewart and Elton John in the top ranks of the decade’s Stateside superstars. Young Americans, representing the zenith of Bowie’s influential soul period, contributed in no small measure to breaking white soul music into the mainstream. The album was, in theory, about “emotional drive,” but came to represent much more than that, both upon its release and over time. Young Americans is Bowie’s vision of and reply to a wide swath of above-board and underground musical and socio-political influences, including soul music, politics, sex, drugs, dancing, and the cultural scenes of downtown New York and uptown Philadelphia. A No. 2 U.K. chart peak made it Bowie’s first studio album in three years not to reach the top spot. Nonetheless, the album’s legacy would be profound, as a new movement of U.K. soul drew inspiration from Bowie’s cool version of Americana and revolutionized British pop in the process. Bowie’s soul boy look and haircut, later to be known as ‘the wedge,’ became the hallmarks of classic clubland cool, not just for the soul boys themselves but across the greater New Romantic era, as well. It is not often that an album makes such a sweeping musical, cultural and subcultural impact. David Bowie’s Young Americans is one of the rare, era-defining records that altered the course of both popular music and modern style.

 File Under: Rock
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homeshake

Homeshake: Fresh Air (Royal Mountain) LP
In tomorrow… Born in the bleak isolation of the secluded prairie city of Edmonton, Canada, Homeshake’s Peter Sagar worked with friends in a number of local bands before picking up and moving to Montreal in 2011 to begin recording under the Homeshake moniker. Following two self-released cassettes (The Homeshake Tapes and Dynamic Meditation) and two acclaimed full lengths (In The Shower and Midnight Snack), Sagar cracks a window open with his third album for Sinderlyn – Fresh Air. Started immediately following the recording of Midnight Snack, Fresh Air continues Sagar’s exploration of dreamy, downtempo bedroom R&B and draws inspiration from such disparate artists like Sade, The Band, Broadcast, Prince, and Angelo Badalamenti. As the title Fresh Air suggests, Sagar’s songs were created to clear his listeners’ minds of negativity. Full of smokey, laid back love songs and airy productions, Sagar’s decidedly stoned sound is a breath of fresh air.

File Under: Indie Rock
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hoop

Jesca Hoop: Memories Are Now Included (Sub Pop) LP
Jesca Hoop’s new album Memories Are Now,, wastes no time in making clear its confidence, confrontation, and craftsmanship. The stark and reverberant title track opens the album with “a fighting spirit,” says Hoop, serving as an anthem to push through any obstacle and put forth your very best work. And she has unequivocally done that here, with an album of stunningly original songs – minimalist yet brimming with energy, emerging from a wealth of life experience, great emotional depth, and years of honing the craft of singing. As riveting as it is reflective, the album, produced by Blake Mills (Fiona Apple, Alabama Shakes), is a fresh debut of sorts for Hoop, as the first of her solo records made outside of Tony Berg’s Zeitgeist Studios where she and Mills were mentored. Says Hoop, “Blake is so utterly musical and emotionally intelligent in his expression. I wanted to see what we could do, just he and I out from under Tony’s wing.” Mills pushed her to strip away layers, keeping it as close to the live experience as possible, using whole live takes and working very quickly. “It’s still covered in embryonic fluid, for lack of a better way to put it,” says Hoop. However fast the work, Memories Are Now covers a great deal of ground, showcasing every edge and curve of Hoop’s captivating voice, with sounds and themes ranging from the mythic to the deeply intimate. She sings of the religion that weighs heavily on her past and the world, of the imagination of myth, of the cruel nature of life and love. The defiance that permeates Memories Are Now is both a product and necessity of a career that has been independently driven and self-funded from the beginning. “All of my successes have been won on the grassroots level, with handshakes and hugs from great people who believe in me,” says Hoop, more than a decade into her career and with new paths to forge. As she sings in the title track, “I’ve lived enough life, I’ve earned my stripes. That’s my knife in the ground, this is mine.”

File Under: Indie Rock
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oldcrow

Old Crow Medicine Show: Best of (Nettwerk) LP
Two-time Grammy Award winners and Grand Ole Opry members Old Crow Medicine Show release Best Of, which features 12 of the most memorable and beloved songs from O.C.M.S. (2004), Big Iron World (2006), Tennessee Pusher (2008) including Wagon Wheel” as well as two previously unreleased tracks: Black Haired Quebecoise and Heart Up In The Sky.

File Under: Folk
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oxbow

Oxbow: An Evil Heat (Concrete Lofi) LP
Oxbow is one of THE avant-garde rock bands of our generation. We are proud to present their groundbreaking 2002 album, An Evil Heat, on vinyl for the first time. Remastered double album for maximum effect with Oxbow’s preferred studio, Golden Mastering. The original artwork had been lost over time, so we carefully restored and crafted the artwork for the 12″ format. Hailing from the San Francisco Bay Area, Oxbow is a collective of radical musicians that are anti-formula rock machine murderers. They make chaos a publicly accepted art form, alongside fellow “in need of a mental hospital sojourn” musicians such as Mr. Bungle, Fantômas and the Melvins. At any time they may shift from music concrete to a stoner-type jam to pure insanity and madness. However, things sound incredibly calculated, making this bunch worthy of suspicion and wariness, which is the trait of any true artist.

File Under: Avant-Rock, Metal
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ultimate

Ultimate Spinach: Behold & See (Sundazed) LP
It was legendary record producer Alan Lorber that came up with the concept of “The Bosstown Sound” – “The Sound Heard ‘Round The World” to market and promote the best and brightest of the Bean Town sixties psychedelic scene. (Boston’s key groups at the time included Orpheus, Beacon Street Union, Ultimate Spinach, Chamaeleon Church and others). Ultimate Spinach, arguably the finest of them all, produced magnificent examples of surreal psychedelic record-making, now prized by crate-diggers and outsider music fans alike. The Spinach’s self-titled debut album is now considered a psychedelic classic, but it’s the group’s second record, Behold and See, that is perhaps their finest achievement. Ostensibly a concept album, it’s centered around lead singer/songwriter/keyboardist/guitarist Ian Bruce-Douglas’ cynical worldview. He skewers “normal” society with all the fervor of Zappa and all the surreality (and insanity) of Bob Markley on songs like “Visions of Your Reality” and the four-part “Suite: Genesis of Beauty.” Add in the lush, floating vocals of Barbara Jean Hudson, fuzz guitar and some great late-60s psych jangle and you’ve got the formula for an unhinged classic that stands up to the best of the non-coastal psych sounds of the late-60s. For decades, the only available version of Behold and See was a heavily-edited “director’s cut” which omitted an entire song and presented edited versions of others. On this edition, Sundazed proudly presents the album in its rare, original, superior dedicated mono mix, unexpurgated and unedited. This “ultimate edition” is presented on (of course! and at last!) custom spinach-colored vinyl and nestled into a jacket with beautifully restored artwork. Behold and See is the perfect place to dig into the “Bosstown Sound” – a tremendous and beautiful album now on Sundazed!

File Under: Psych
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weeknd

Weeknd: Starboy (Republic) LP
In tomorrow…. Academy Award-nominated, 2x Grammy Award-winning, and 9x JUNO Award-winning alternative R&B artist The Weeknd’s third studio album Starboy has finally arrived! The highly anticipated follow-up to his triple platinum 2015 release Beauty Behind the Madness captured the No. 1 spot in a staggering 90 countries and debuted atop the Billboard 200. The 18-track double album features four songs that have been soaring up the charts since their release – “Starboy,” “False Alarm,” “I Feel It Coming” and “Party Monster” plus incredible features from Daft Punk (album opener and lead single “Starboy and funky closer “I Feel It Coming”), Kendrick Lamar (“Sidewalks”), Lana Del Rey (“Stargirl Interlude”) and Future (“All I Know”).

File Under: R&B, Pop
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…..Restocks…..

David Axelrod: Auction (Decca) LP
Courtney Barnett: Sometimes I Just Sit (Mom & Pop) LP
Courtney Barnett: The Double EP (Mom & Pop) LP
Bing & Ruth: Tomorrow Was the Golden Age (RVNG INTL) LP
Biosphere: Departed Glories (Smalltown Supersound) LP
Bjork: Debut (One Little Indian) LP
Blue Cheer: Vincebus Eruptum (Sundazed) LP
David Bowie: Hunky Dory (Parlophone) LP
David Bowie: The Next Day (Columbia) LP
Broadcast & The Focus Group: Investigate Witch Cults (Warp) LP
Budos Band: III (Daptone) LP
Vic Chesnut: Little (New West) LP
Constantines: Kensington Heights (Arts & Crafts) LP
Death Grips: The Money Store (Sony) LP
Bob Dylan: The Real Royal Albert Hall (Sony) LP
Flying Lotus: Cosmogramma (Warp) LP
Green Day: Dookie (Universal) LP
Billie Holiday: Lady in Satin (Legacy) LP
Norah Jones: Day Breaks (Blue Note) LP
Albert King: Born Under A Bad Sign (Sundazed) LP
Albert King: The Big Blues (Sundazed) LP
Fela Kuti: Live w/ Ginger Baker (Knitting Factory) LP
Kendrick Lamar: Good Kid M.A.A.D. City (Aftermath) LP
Charles Mingus: Mingus Ah Um (Music on Vinyl) LP
Mitski: Puberty 2 (Dead Oceans) LP
Neurosis: Eye Of Every Storm (Relapse) LP
Night Beats: Who Sold My Generation (Heavenly) LP
Angel Olsen: My Woman (Jagjaguwar) LP
Pink Floyd: Obscured By Clouds (Pink Floyd) LP
Portishead: Third (Mercury) LP
Otis Redding: Dictionary of Soul (Sundazed) LP
Lou Reed: Transformer (Legacy) LP
Rolling Stones: Blue & Lonesome (Polydor) LP
Royal Headache: s/t (What’s Your Rupture) LP
Run The Jewels: s/t (Mass Appeal) LP
Sturgill Simpson: A Sailors Guide to the Earth (Atlantic) LP
Sturgill Simpson: Metamodern Sounds (Thirty Tigers) LP
Solange: A Seat At The Table (Columbia) LP
Taake: Noregs Vaapen (Dark Essence) LP
A Tribe Called Quest: Midnight Marauders (Jive) LP
Tribes of Neurot: Grace (Relapse) LP
Jack White: Lazaretto (Third Man) LP
Jack White: Blunderbuss (Third Man) LP

…..Used Goodies…..

AFX: 2 Remixes by AFX (EFA) 12″
Badbadnotgood: II (Innovative Leisure) LP
Badbadnotgood & Ghostface Killah: Sour Soul (Lex) Gold LP
Badbadnotgood & Ghostface Killah: Sour Soul (Lex) Sealed Gold LP
Black Dice: Beaches & Canyons (DFA) LP
The Books: Lemon of Pink (Tomlab) LP
Camel: Mirage (Deram) UK LP
The Doors: Morrison Hotel (Warner) LP
Ella Fitzgerald: Sings the Gershwin Song Book 2 (Verve) LP
Fleetwood Mac: Tusk (Warner) LP
Ghost: Hypnotic Underworld (Drag City) LP
Hawkwind: Domi Fasol Latido (United Artists) LP
Hawkwind: Space Ritual (United Artists) LP
Hawkwind: Warrior on the Edge of Time (United Artists) LP
Bobby Hutcherson: Total Eclipse (Blue Note) LP
Bob Marley & The Wailers: Catch A Fire (Island) LP
Pablo Moses: A Song (Mongo) LP
Klaus Nom: Simple Man (Spindizzy) UK LP
Ozzy Osborne: Randy Rhoads Tribute (CBS) LP
Pink Floyd: The Wall (Columbia) LP
Plasmatics: Beyond the Valley of 1984 (Stiff) LP
Rush: 2112 (Anthem) LP
Rush: Hemispheres (Anthem) LP
Rush: Moving Pictures (Anthem) LP
Stars of the Lid: Tired Sounds of (Kranky) Sealed 1st press LP
Toots & The Maytals: Pass the Pipe (Mongo) LP
Bunny Wailer: Blackheart Man (Mongo) LP
Bunny Wailer: Rock n Groove (Solomonic) LP
Bunny Wailer: Tribute (Solomonic) Jamaican LP
Wolf Eyes: Burned Mind (Hanson) LP
Zoviet France: s/t (AKA Hessian) (Red Rhino) LP
Zoviet France: Norsch (Red Rhino) LP

Tagged , , , , , ,

…..news letter #776 – plaster…..

Another stacked week around here… assuming that Run The Jewels shows up tomorrow. Loads of other great new stuff in too. AND a ridiculous amount of new used stuff hitting the bins too. AND nice warm weather still. You owe it to yourself to come for a dig.

…..pick of the week…..

bender

John Bender: Plaster Falling (Superior Viaduct) LP
Plaster Falling was recorded at the same time as John Bender’s first album, I Don’t Remember Now / I Don’t Want To Talk About It. Released in 1981 on the artist’s own Record Sluts label, copies of Plaster Falling’s initial pressing came hermetically sealed in plaster (and later latex). Thus, listeners had to literally break open the record to find what’s hidden inside. Produced in relative isolation, Plaster Falling is a beacon of brilliance in the nascent minimal-wave sphere. Veering towards skeletal urgency, these recordings set bright analogue melodies against half-whispered vocals and expand Bender’s electronic cryptography thru a series of lone signifiers: “Station,” “Plaster,” “Women,” etc. As Bender explains in the liner notes, “I began to distance myself from the present and describe scenes as if in a movie – seeking concrete, terse, juxtaposed imagery.” This first-time standalone reissue is recommended for fans of Gareth Williams & Mary Currie’s Flaming Tunes, Minimal Man and Grouper. Pressed on translucent blue vinyl in a limited / numbered edition of 1,000 copies.

File Under: Electronic, Cold Wave, Minimal Wave
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…..new arrivals…..

basinski

William Basinski: A Shadow in Time (Temporary Residence) LP
World-renowned as one of experimental music’s most vital and impressionistic composers of the past few decades, William Basinski’s tape loop works have been especially influential, particularly on the historic series, The Disintegration Loops, where distorted, orchestral tape samples burrow deep into the listener’s psyche through meditative repetition. On his new album, A Shadow In Time, Basinski plunges deeper than ever for the plaintive solitary eulogy to David Bowie, aptly titled “For David Robert Jones.” Conversely, the title track, “A Shadow In Time,” is a subtle, celestial escalation of melody and drone. The result is one of the most truly transcendent pieces of music he has ever committed to – or wrung from – tape.

File Under: Ambient
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bbq

BBQ (Mark Sultan): s/t (In The Red) LP
This is the first album by BBQ since 2005’s Tie Your Noose on the historic Bomp! label. BBQ is Mark Sultan, who also has recorded many other albums and 45s, as well as playing in bands like The King Khan & BBQ Show, Almighty Defenders, Ding-Dongs and Les Sexareenos etc., etc. BBQ is his preferred monicker for playing as a very strict live-recorded one-man band. This album serves as a little wink goodbye to any complexities past and a strong “welcome back” to the primitive, brusque and airy rock’n’roll which has made Sultan beloved since 2003. Forgoing lo-fi, BBQ is reinventing the one-man band, taking it back, for a loud, clear and raw sound; helmed by great songs, sung truly and passionately. Recorded by himself in his basement, live in one to two takes — twelve brand new killers.

File Under: Lo-Fi, Punk, Rock

carlos

Erasmo Carlos: Carlos, Erasmo… (Light in the Attic) LP
In tomorrow… Erasmo Carlos has no counterpart in the universe of Anglophone pop music that could begin to hint at his relevance, popularity and his complex relationship with the only Brazilian pop star more universally recognized than himself, Roberto Carlos. He may be a beloved pop star and household name in Brazil, but hardly because of the music found on the three albums reissued by Light In The Attic. While in retrospect they can be appreciated as some of his most creative, consistent and personal albums, they were also some of the least commercially successful and underappreciated of his long career, at least until recently. Embracing the artistic freedom of the global counterculture of the late sixties and early seventies, over the course of these three albums, Erasmo evolved from his bubblegum beginnings into a sophisticated seventies singer-songwriter. Erasmo Carlos E Os Tremendões (1970), Carlos, ERASMO . . . (1971) and Sonhos E Memórias 1941-1972 (1972) collectively find this maturing teeny-bopper delivering a mix of world class psychedelic Rock, traditional Rock ‘N’ Roll, Soul, Funk, Folk, Bossa Nova, and Samba-Rock to an unsuspecting Brazilian audience. As a student and fan of Elvis, Little Richard, Bill Haley, and Chuck Berry, Erasmo indulged his primal rock urges on these albums, notably getting sufficiently psychedelic and fuzzy on Carlos, ERASMO . . . Arriving in 1971 while Caetano and Gil were still in exile, Rita Lee had recently quit Os Mutantes and Gal Costa was onto a new sound, Erasmo’s 1971 album was the closest thing to Tropicália around. Carlos, ERASMO . . . was co-produced by the Tropicália producer, Manoel Barenbein, including a new composition from Caetano, a few arrangements courtesy of Rogério Duprat and the musical talents of no fewer than three Mutants: lead guitarist Sergio Dias, drummer Dinho Leme and bassist Liminha, not to mention Brazil’s undisputed psychedelic axe-master, Alexander Gordin, aka “Lanny”, Carlos, ERASMO. . . is a virtual all-star team of Tropícalistas (not in exile). This album is considered a bedrock album within the Brazilian rock scene and a notable late entry in the Tropicália tradition, rocking harder than any album in his catalog, but also including wispy love songs, soul and funk moves, brassy pop tunes and a marimba-driven ode to marijuana.

 File Under: Samba, Latin, Funk, Soul, Brazilian, Pop
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carlos1

Erasmo Carlos: Erasmo Carlos E Os Tremendoes (Light in the Attic) LP
In tomorrow… Erasmo Carlos has no counterpart in the universe of Anglophone pop music that could begin to hint at his relevance, popularity and his complex relationship with the only Brazilian pop star more universally recognized than himself, Roberto Carlos. He may be a beloved pop star and household name in Brazil, but hardly because of the music found on the three albums reissued by Light In The Attic. While in retrospect they can be appreciated as some of his most creative, consistent and personal albums, they were also some of the least commercially successful and underappreciated of his long career, at least until recently. Embracing the artistic freedom of the global counterculture of the late sixties and early seventies, over the course of these three albums, Erasmo evolved from his bubblegum beginnings into a sophisticated seventies singer-songwriter. Erasmo Carlos E Os Tremendões (1970), Carlos, ERASMO . . . (1971) and Sonhos E Memórias 1941-1972 (1972) collectively find this maturing teeny-bopper delivering a mix of world class psychedelic Rock, traditional Rock ‘N’ Roll, Soul, Funk, Folk, Bossa Nova, and Samba-Rock to an unsuspecting Brazilian audience. Collectively, the songs on Erasmo Carlos E Tremendões sound like an attempt to appeal to nearly every relevant genre of Brazilian popular music at the turn of the decade. From the cover tunes alone there’s a Caetano song “Saudosismo” (Tropicália), an Antônio Adolfo song “Teletema” (Pilantragem/art-pop), and not just any Ary Barroso song, but the unofficial Brazilian national anthem “Aquarela Do Brasil”. Of the new songs, “Menina” is a Soul ballad and “Jeep” brings the Funk. Maybe it was exactly that, a chance for Erasmo to stretch his creative muscles in a lot of different directions as it became clear his Jovem Guarda character and sound had run its course, along with the TV show of the same name. Erasmo Carlos E Os Tremendões is greater than the sum of its pop-rock spitballs. It’s a creative, and at times experimental and groundbreaking album that remains a thrilling listen.

 File Under: Brazilian, Samba, Latin, Funk, Soul, Pop
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carlos2

Erasmo Carlos: Sonhos E Memorias 1941-1972 (Light in the Attic) LP
In tomorrow… Erasmo Carlos has no counterpart in the universe of Anglophone pop music that could begin to hint at his relevance, popularity and his complex relationship with the only Brazilian pop star more universally recognized than himself, Roberto Carlos. He may be a beloved pop star and household name in Brazil, but hardly because of the music found on the three albums reissued by Light In The Attic. While in retrospect they can be appreciated as some of his most creative, consistent and personal albums, they were also some of the least commercially successful and underappreciated of his long career, at least until recently. Embracing the artistic freedom of the global counterculture of the late sixties and early seventies, over the course of these three albums, Erasmo evolved from his bubblegum beginnings into a sophisticated seventies singer-songwriter. Erasmo Carlos E Os Tremendões (1970), Carlos, ERASMO . . . (1971) and Sonhos E Memórias 1941-1972 (1972) collectively find this maturing teeny-bopper delivering a mix of world class psychedelic Rock, traditional Rock ‘N’ Roll, Soul, Funk, Folk, Bossa Nova, and Samba-Rock to an unsuspecting Brazilian audience. Sonhos E Memórias (1941-1972) is truly singular within Brazilian pop fusing rock, soul, jazz and singer-songwriter styles. It’s simultaneously rootsy, funky, modern and nostalgic. The lyrics are highly personal, searching for deeper meaning with lots of flower power imagery and language, while the music is tight, highly rhythmic, melodic and restrained in its delivery and effortless groove. Built around the future fusion trio Azymuth with keyboardist José Roberto Bertrami, drummer Ivan Conti aka “Mamão” and bassist Alex Malheiros, a majority of the album’s tunes make excellent use of this trio’s telepathic tightness, subtle funkiness, and melodic mastery. The album dabbles with a few different styles and rhythms, all telling Erasmo’s musical story be it Bossa Nova, Roots Rock, Hard Rock, ballads, and soulful grooves, but a certain sonic frequency or tempo alongside the autobiographical elements unite this masterwork.

File Under: Brazilian, Samba, Latin, Pop, Funk, Soul
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come

Chemical Brothers: Come With Us (Astralwerks) LP
In Tomorrow… Undisputed masters of brain-altering, transcendent electronica, The Chemical Brothers (comprised of the duo of Tom Rowlands and Ed Simons), have been producing some of the world’s greatest dance music for the better part of two decades. Their star hasn’t stopped rising since their groundbreaking early albums changed the game altogether. On their tight fourth full-length outing, 2002’s Come With Us, The Chemical Brothers got back to their roots and the kinetic energy they made their name on. Simons noted, “The first three or four numbers do remind me of those days when we were so excited about putting together little grooves and beats – that whole cut-up era of hip-hop.” Home to the trio of high octane singles “It Began in Afrika,” “Star Guitar” and “Come with Us”/”The Test,” and featuring Richard Ashcroft and Beth Orton as guest vocalists, the album debuted at No. 1 on the U.K. Albums Chart and immediately became one of the biggest releases of 2001. The Chemical Brothers’ first seven studio albums will again be available in the U.S. Each comes repackaged in the original sleeve artwork from the first pressings. Audio has been cut from the original lacquers directly from the studio of the original engineer, Mike Marsh, and is fully approved by The Chemical Brothers’ Ed Simons and Tom Rowlands.

File Under: Electronic, House, Downtempo
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further

Chemical Brothers: Further (Astralwerks) LP
In tomorrow… Undisputed masters of brain-altering, transcendent electronica, The Chemical Brothers (comprised of the duo of Tom Rowlands and Ed Simons), have been producing some of the world’s greatest dance music for the better part of two decades. Their star hasn’t stopped rising since their groundbreaking early albums changed the game altogether. 2010’s Grammy-nominated Further is an 8-track masterpiece of modern psychedelia effortlessly fusing freeform analogue wig-outs with juggernaut dancefloor dynamics. Further is the culmination of years of psychedelic exploration, an immersive collection that finds The Chemical Brothers at their least-restrained and most-melodic best. The Chemical Brothers’ first seven studio albums will again be available in the U.S. Each comes repackaged in the original sleeve artwork from the first pressings. Audio has been cut from the original lacquers directly from the studio of the original engineer, Mike Marsh, and is fully approved by The Chemical Brothers’ Ed Simons and Tom Rowlands.

 File Under: Electronic, House
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push

Chemical Brothers: Push the Button (Astralwerks) LP
In tomorrow… Undisputed masters of brain-altering, transcendent electronica, The Chemical Brothers (comprised of the duo of Tom Rowlands and Ed Simons), have been producing some of the world’s greatest dance music for the better part of two decades. Their star hasn’t stopped rising since their groundbreaking early albums changed the game altogether. Innovative and inspired fifth studio effort, 2005’s Push the Button, contains the explosive Middle Easton-flavored single “Galvanize,” which immediately shot to the Top 5 on the British charts. A year later, both earned The Chemical Brothers Grammys for Best Album and Best Single. Featuring guest appearances by Q-Tip, Tim Burgess, Kele Okereke, Anna-Lynne Williams, Anwar Superstar and The Magic Numbers. The Chemical Brothers’ first seven studio albums will again be available in the U.S. Each comes repackaged in the original sleeve artwork from the first pressings. Audio has been cut from the original lacquers directly from the studio of the original engineer, Mike Marsh, and is fully approved by The Chemical Brothers’ Ed Simons and Tom Rowlands.

File Under: Electronic, House
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cherry

Cherry Glazerr: Apocalipstick (Secretly Canadian) LP
Society would deem a prodigious girl can’t be in a progressive rock band while also being in complete control of its creative vision, business plan and social messaging. Society is wrong. Clem, a 19 year old teen Queen dreamed up Cherry Glazerr in her LA bedroom alone and is perhaps more capable of figuring a music career out than anyone who attempts this treacherous life path. Back in 2014, much-loved Cali imprint Burger Records released their intoxicating debut Haxel Princess and Suicide Squeeze released the Had Ten Dollaz 7-inch. On Apocalipstick the band worked with “rock ‘n’ roll wizard” Joe Chicarelli (White Stripes, The Shins, The Strokes) and Carlos de la Garza (Bleached, M83, Tegan and Sara). With their help and the band’s newfound self-discipline and motivation, Cherry Glazerr has evolved into a wildly complex, hugely guitar heavy, and unapologetically loud machine.

 File Under: Indie Rock
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dixon

Bill Dixon Orchestra: Intents & Purposes (Superior Viaduct) LP
After spending the early ‘60s playing in groups with Cecil Taylor and Archie Shepp, trumpeter Bill Dixon recorded his singular and visionary masterpiece in 1967. Intents And Purposes remains not only Dixon’s defining statement as a composer, but also one of the most luminous moments in the history of avant-garde jazz. Combining orchestral timbres with free jazz intensity, Dixon leads a ten-piece ensemble including such heavyweights as Byard Lancaster, Robin Kenyatta, Jimmy Garrison and Reggie Workman. Closing each side of the album, “Nightfall Pieces I” and “Nightfall Pieces II” are evocative duets featuring Dixon’s flugelhorn accompanied by flautist George Marge. With Intents And Purposes, Dixon creates a work focused as much on sculpting and defining space—emphasizing moments of resonant stillness around which the compositions thrum and swell—as on purity of expression. This first-time vinyl reissue is recommended for fans of Art Ensemble of Chicago, Anthony Braxton and Henry Cow. “One of the richest and most compelling LPs to taunt and tempt listeners into a life of freakdom.” —John Corbett

File Under: Jazz
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grotesque

The Fall: Grotesque (After the Gramme) (Superior Viaduct) LP
Bursting into the 1980s on a new label (the then-upstart, now-legendary Rough Trade) and with an augmented, audibly panicked lineup, The Fall’s Grotesque is the true pure-bred Fall release from the Marc Riley era. Released in the immediate wake of The Fall’s most beloved single (Totally Wired), the album carries over that righteously famed teeth-chattering, bolstered in no small part by the drumming of new addition Paul Hanley, brother of bassist Steve Hanley and aged only 15 at the time of recording. “Pay Your Rates” negates the notion of easing into things, opening the album with pure jitter, guided by hornet-buzz guitars and Mark E. Smith’s commanding shout, allowing for breath only during the brief, lumbering waltzes that appear at unexpected intervals. “New Face In Hell” is an entirely alien take on dancehall post-punk – a kazoo-driven rave-up that holds an unshakable position in the band’s canon. Many significant firsts surround Grotesque, including The Fall’s inaugural production partnership with Mayo Thompson and the debut of Suzanne Smith’s wonderful artwork, both of which would play key roles in the band’s following phase. Superior Viaduct’s edition is the first time that Grotesque has been available on vinyl domestically since its initial release in 1980. Liner notes by Brian Turner.

File Under: Punk
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hex

The Fall: Hex Enduction Hour (Superior Viaduct) LP
Hex Enduction Hour was originally conceptualized as the death knell for The Fall. Beleaguered by career uncertainty and guided by vague premonitions of collapse, Mark E. Smith declared that one full hour was needed to thoroughly and perhaps finally state his case with The Fall. This framework resulted in a true classic of the post-punk era and an album that gave The Fall their first taste of album chart success, thankfully removing surrender from the equation. Recorded in haste in both Iceland and England in late 1981, the performances on Hex Enduction Hour are among the band’s most urgent and distinctive. The album begins with the severe provocation of “The Classical” and the terse punk of “Jawbone And The Air-Rifle,” but it’s “Hip Priest” that stands out as Smith’s calling-card theme, a song that would become inextricable from his character (or perception thereof) in the years that followed. The elongated “And This Day” fittingly positions the band as spell-casters, closing the hour by filling every conceivable bit of space with wild, primitive percussion and whimsical electric piano. Superior Viaduct’s edition is the first time that Hex Enduction Hour has been available on vinyl domestically since its initial release in 1982. Liner notes by Brian Turner.

File Under: Punk
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room

The Fall: Room to Live (Superior Viaduct) LP
On Room To Live, The Fall take the hurried, all-or-nothing approach of their preceding Kamera Records releases to extreme ends. Forged via Mark E. Smith’s continual disassembling of players and focus on previously unrehearsed material, the album collects The Fall’s most experimental and improvisational recordings. As proclaimed on the album cover, “Undilutable Slang Truth!” would be revealed throughout Room To Live. With the album’s comparatively lo-fi production and always- teetering performances, the title track comes closest to a stab at pop (by The Fall’s standards), built on fantastically bent saloon swaying under one of Smith’s by-now characteristic dressing-downs of square life. “Detective Instinct” is an unshakeable creeper, as languid and ominous as the band would get during the Marc Riley years. “Marquis Cha Cha” is a post-punk rhumba, beginning with fury and then easing into something only The Fall could conjure. Superior Viaduct’s edition is the first time that Room To Live has been available on vinyl domestically since its initial release in 1982. Liner notes by Brian Turner.

File Under: Punk
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lips

Flaming Lips: Oczy Mlody (Warner) LP
The Flaming Lips present their long-awaited new studio album, Oczy Mlody. Produced by the band and long-time producer Dave Fridmann, the highly-anticipated LP is the follow-up to their globally acclaimed 2013 album, The Terror. On Oczy Mlody, The Lips return to form with an album no less experimental in nature, but perhaps more melodically song-oriented, recalling the best parts of their most critically applauded albums The Soft Bulletin and the gold-certified Yoshimi Battles The Pink Robots. Oczy Mlody will be released in several configurations including a 12-song double-LP edition – pressed on colored vinyl and an 11-song single-LP edition (both of which include a digital download card of all 12 songs). Frontman Wayne Coyne explains: “When asked (about our newest album Oczy Mlody) what does your new stuff sound like? My current response has been that it sounds like Syd Barrett meets A$AP Rocky and they get trapped in a fairy tale from the future. Knowing full well that if you know who Syd Barrett is (original founder of classic rock/space opera group Pink Floyd) you probably don’t know who A$AP Rocky is (current badass psychedelic rapper) and if you know and like A$AP Rocky you probably don’t care or wouldn’t like Syd Barrett…perhaps, it is only within The Flaming Lips world that these 2 (Syd and A$AP) could accidentally find themselves. “But somehow they have gone through a hole in the night sky and arrived in a fucked up, day glow, fairy tale world in the future. A future where Oczy Mlody is the current cool powerful party drug of choice and sleeping is the ultimate cure for everything… sleeping for, like, 3 months. So if you want to lose weight. Ping!! You are put to sleep for 3 months and you wake up thin. If you are addicted to drugs. Ping!! You sleep yourself out of withdrawals and cravings and wake up sober. “And it all takes place inside a gated community that has been made into a replicant fantasy fairy tale city where the mega-mega rich folks live and have self indulgent psycho parties (maybe I’ve been spending too much time around Miley Cyrus) where everyone takes Oczy Mlody (the drug uses your own sub conscious memories and transports you to your perfect childhood happy mind) and everyone has sex while riding unicorns. There are frogs and wizards and spiders and painful emotional therapy sessions where every primal desire is allowed and encouraged.”

File Under: Rock, Psych
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foxygen

Foxygen: Hang (Jagjaguwar) LP
Hang is Foxygen’s third album for Jagjaguwar, and their first proper studio record, recorded in Los Angeles, CA at Electro Vox Studios. Hang features Steven Drozd of the Flaming Lips, as well as Brian and Michael D’Addario of the Lemon Twigs as players on the album. Hang also features a 40+ piece symphony orchestra on every track. Trey Pollard from Spacebomb arranged and conducted the orchestral parts, with additional arranging from Matthew E. White. Foxygen is the Big Bang of two combusting minds. It’s the splayed Galaxy of polar geniuses Sam France and Jonathan Rado. It’s a handshake with a knife behind your back. A sleepless night in a five star hotel. You listen to Hang properly. You take in each moment. Each new melody that threads forward from the fingertips of one of this generation’s finest piano men in Rado. And you fall in line behind France’s sprawling and reckless lyric. Witness his mastery. Feel them struggle against the walls of their own creations. Follow them there. To the perimeter. To the exit sign. Notice that the two young guys aren’t there anymore. They’re outside looking for another joint to haunt. They’re already out of sight.

File Under: Indie Rock
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georgia

Georgia: All Kind Music (Palto Flats) LP
In tomorrow… On All Kind Music, NYC production duo Georgia (Brian Close and Justin Tripp) return for their third full length: ECM-era Don Cherry global jazz meets contemporary electronic avant-garde, true world dance music for the next millennium. With guest turns on every track, Georgia explore a new approach to studio production, incorporating the sounds of world and jazz music into their digital funk and combining and processing improvisation and composed elements to create a unified, distinct voice. This approach can be heard on “Ama Yes Uzume,” as a primally incandescent vocal from Caroline Polachek (Chairlift) blends with glistening waves of piano and synth to form a euphoric rhythm that materializes out of curved air. Blending live performance with sampling and editing, Georgia constantly revise and revisit their work, breaking down, collaging, and refracting sounds. On lead track “Slow Dance,” vocals by performance artist India Menuez waft over a loping bass line (sampled from a performance by Matt Werth of RVNG) while digital flutes cluster in the background. The outcome is a kind of new age mutant funk, not unlike the sound of Annette Peacock or 23 Skidoo jamming in the studio with Jon Hassell. Additional collaborators include avant-garde harpist Mary Lattimore, saxophonist Wednesday Knudsen, and Gabonese vocalist Abang Essone Sarah Maya. As the title suggests, this is music of many multitudes. RECOMMENDED!

File Under: Electronic, Ambient, Jazz, World
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13

Lee Hazlewood: 13 (Light in the Attic) LP
In tomorrow… 13 was never supposed to be a Lee Hazlewood album. It is perhaps the strangest record in one of the most varied discographies in music. The bombastic brass-heavy funk, deep blues and soul paired with Hazlewood’s subterranean baritone would be best enjoyed with a tall Chivas in an off-strip seedy Vegas lounge. It also features one of Hazlewood’s greatest lines ever “One week in San Francisco, existing on Nabisco, cookies and bad dreams, sad scenes and dodging paranoia.” By 1972 Lee Hazlewood had settled in his new homeland of Sweden. His days were spent carousing, making movies with Torbjörn Axelman and releasing albums. To keep up his prolific recorded output, Lee began to mine the recently defunct LHI Records archives for material. One such gem, was an unreleased album by Larry Marks. In what became the final days of LHI, staff producer Larry Marks’ sonic fingerprints were on nearly everything; songwriting, producing, arranging, and singing. His most profound contribution was steering the creative direction of the label towards soul and R&B, arranging the downright funky LHI singles by Barbara Randolph and Jon Christian. Larry’s concept was to take Hazlewood’s strongest compositions and arrange them in a soul vibe. An album was completed, but with no distribution in America and no funding, Lee had no vehicle to release Larry’s record. The tapes were taken to Sweden, Larry’s voice was wiped and Hazlewood’s was dubbed….13 was born.

File Under: Folk, Pop, Country
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jack-orion

Bert Jansch: Jack Orion (Superior Viaduct) LP
In tomorrow… Jack Orion, Bert Jansch’s third album, may have surprised some fans upon its 1966 release, as it features no original compositions by Jansch. While nearly all of the eight tracks (four of which include guitarist John Renbourn) are interpretations of traditional folk songs, Jansch’s experimental approach breathes new life into this repertoire through his exploratory use of open tunings and passionate, gritty vocals. According to Melody Maker, “his interpretations illuminate the songs from a completely new angle. As sung by him, with brilliant accompaniments, the brutal world that created the old ballads doesn’t seem so very far off.” The ten-minute title song foreshadows the future through the past: with his sublime retelling of this dark tale of desire and revenge, Jansch embarks on a musical trajectory he would further develop with his group Pentangle. In “Black Water Slide,” a haunting ballad he first heard from Anne Briggs, Jansch plants the seeds for future versions by Led Zeppelin and Sandy Denny. Jack Orion’s unique combination of medieval themes and progressive arrangements would pave the way for the next wave of the British folk revival and beyond. This vinyl release has been carefully remastered from the original master tapes and features liner notes by Richie Unterberger. RECOMMENDED!

File Under: Folk
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joan

Joan of Arc: He’s Got The Whole… (Joyful Noise) LP
“Twenty years now there’s been this thing, our band, Joan of Arc. Sometimes we forget about it and let it fizzle out for a year while we tend to our lives. Sometimes we cling to it for a year and wake up surprised and exhausted every day for months on end, given walking tours of old Italian towns, browsing dreary British pedestrian malls or barefooted organic grocers on the Pacific coast. We know how lucky we are. “The less we feel like a band – the more we can continue to be a band, but escape that feeling of doing all those shitty, corny things expected of bands – the truer to ourselves we feel. And you all know it, everyone knows it even if everyone has to bury it to get on with their day-to-day: the truer to ourselves we feel, the better everything gets. We have shifted shapes and modified our approaches quite a number of times in the course of twenty years. And we’ve done so always aiming to stay true to ourselves at that moment, by instinct and with conscious intent. This time, it took us a long time to figure out how to start back up. We threw away a lot of songs and started over, over and over. “But here’s the thing: We are getting better at being ourselves. So many of the postures of youth just fall away with time. Most bands break up by that point, or become caricatures of their younger selves. Because money is tricky, or I should say, it comes to be that energy is tricky to muster after all of it goes into the basics of sustaining yourself. Every day, at some point, it occurs to me that Richard Brautigan killed himself at the age that I am now. But I got this community of weirdo collaborators to lean on that he never had. We’ve never had an audience that gets any validation of its coolness through liking us. We’ve mangled, juxtaposed, and collaged too many elements for that social contract. But we trust each other. “This time, finally, we trusted each other enough to throw all the songs away, to even throw away every preconceived idea about which one of us should take position at which instrument. We hit Record and played, and our collective tastes emerged. And they, our tastes in the moment, were the only standards in all the expanse of the stupefying and beautiful unknown universe, that we regarded as relevant in the least.” – Tim Kinsella

File Under: Indie Rock
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leimerLeimer: Land of Look Behind (Palace of Lights) LP
The Land of Look Behind soundtrack returns to vinyl in a remastered and expanded edition that includes a download of three previously unheard and unreleased tracks from the original sessions. Alan Greenberg, who wrote and directed this film documenting the funeral of Bob Marley, provided K. Leimer with location tapes which were used to originate many of the rhythmic patterns for Land of Look Behind. Loops of the monologues and phrases that exhibited more distinctive cadences and pacing, the words, glottal stops, clicks and coughs of witnesses were used as cues for the percussion instruments. In effect, speech became the organizing principle of the musical score. By eliminating the accuracy of click tracks, musicians were prompted to rove through the inconsistent intervals of the voice-derived patterns. Also included is a four-page insert featuring an essay by Paul Dickow. K. Leimer founded Palace of Lights in 1979. Leimer’s early work has recently been reissued by Autumn and RVNG, and his early cassette work is in the critically acclaimed VOD box set American Cassette Culture. Leimer has been actively producing music since the mid 1970s — his current catalog includes seventeen albums plus two collaborative albums with Marc Barreca. Leimer’s work is included in the collection of The British Library.

File Under: Ambient, New Age
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loscil

Loscil: Monument Builders (Kranky) LP
NOW AVAILABLE ON VINYL!!! Monument Builders is the new album from loscil, the ambient/electronic project of prolific composer Scott Morgan. It was primarily created on sample-based instruments in Morgan’s century old Vancouver home. Like that aged space, this music is also rough-hewn, with rickety samples of boiling kettles and resonant moving air. Recordings from a vintage micro-cassette recorder contribute distortion, rattles and textures that serve as both percussion and abstract aural color. According to Morgan, the genesis for the album may have begun as he viewed an old VHS copy of the American experimental film Koyaanisqatsi. “Something about the time-tarnished visuals and the pitch warble on Philip Glass’s epic score added a new layer of intrigue for me,” says Morgan. “Glass has always been an influence but lo-fi Glass felt like a minor revelation, as if the decay was actually enhancing the impact of the film’s message.” The investigations on Monument Builders also took inspiration from the anti-humanist writings of influential philosopher John Gray, as well as photographer Edward Burtynsky’s iconic aerial photographs of pollution and environmental destruction. “Gray’s writing, particularly his book Straw Dogs: Thoughts on Humans and Other Animals, reinforced a bleak notion I had that we humans don’t have much say in how it all turns out,” says Morgan. “With Burtynsky, I was struck by the fact that something so strikingly beautiful could be the result of large-scale waste and exploitation.” Monument Builders was composed during a period in which the life-and-death battles of close friends and family forced Morgan to examine his own feelings on mortality. In the course of that introspection, Morgan found himself buoyed by a feeling of celebration and a stubborn sense of survival—an acknowledgement of what it means to be able to breathe and create amidst the clash of love and chaos. Ultimately, Morgan hopes the music here can offer listeners solace while leaving room for exploration and surprise.

File Under: Electronic, Ambient
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esp

Egisto Macchi: E.S.P. (Cometa) LP
In tomorrow… In the 70′s, the Italian public television RAI used to broadcast disturbing paranoiac dramas, weird documentaries on the bottom of the sea and indigestible so-called “educational” movies. Obviously, all that stuff needed some music. Or “sonorizzazioni” (soundtracks), as they were called. These soundtracks were handled by shady characters, on the border between avant-garde classical, electronic space age and a healthy Italian pop touch. Some names are familiar: Ennio Morricone, for example. Or the mythological Piero Umiliani, too.But the biggest of all was Egisto Macchi. His Voix, a ghostly fresco of lunar vocals and abstract phonemes, is one of the masterpieces of the Italian “library music”.ESP is a four-part television series produced by Rai in 1973, directed by Daniele D’Anza, and aired from Sunday, May 27 1973 to Sunday, June 17, 1973 on the National Program.

File Under: Library, Italian
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11183_JKT

Lee Morse: Sweeping The Cobwebs (Asherah) LP
In tomorrow… Lee Morse (born Lena Corinne Taylor on Nov. 30., 1897 in Cove, Oregon) is perhaps best remembered as a torch singer and performer on the jazz and bluegrass circuits of the Pre-War era. However, what is not yet reckoned with is that she was one of the earliest female singer/ songwriters to ever be recorded in the United States. Morse learned to sing and play guitar from her older brothers, both of whom played in the bluegrass style, at a very young age touring in the Portland-Seattle area with their preacher father. This is how she developed her distinctive low-register voice as she tried to impersonate them, something that when coupled with her very small frame made her a successful performing musician on the vaudeville circuit and in silent film. This also lead to a rather large recording catalog, both credited as a solo artist and with band “Her Bluegrass Boys.” Despite this success, early critics dismissed her “coos” and “yelps” in her singing style as being gimmicky even though they’d become standard uses of expression in jazz vocalizing throughout the 30’s, 40’s and 50’s — a style she helped invent and develop. In an era that did not see anything particularly special about a singer who also wrote music outside of the burgeoning folk/ blues movement, Morse’s substantial portfolio of well-written and thoughtful songs from this period (mostly with no co-writer) have often been neglected. Lee’s performing career waned in the years before WWII, and she died without much fanfare in 1954 at the age of 57. While not focused on her most popular recordings, the purpose of this collection is to instead position Lee Morse in her rightful place as a musical pioneer for both American music and gender equality in the music community.

File Under: Jazz, Blues
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greasy

OST: The Greasy Strangler (Death Waltz) LP
In tomorrow… Death Waltz Recording Company are proud to present The Greasy Strangler. The film was featured on Sundance’s Midnight section and drew immediate hype for its singular vision. The Fright File wrote “Complementing every scene in an incalculable way is one of the most pronounced and inspired music scores and soundtracks in recent memory, an instantly catchy, appropriately playful lo-fi orgy of electronic synth compositions from Fuck Buttons band member Andrew Hung”. Hung’s score reflects the onscreen insanity perfectly offering an extremely twisted musical electronic soundtrack reminiscent of 80s video games complete with chiptune vocals, children’s keyboards and playful bouncy beats, it’s the kind of off kilter musical styling’s you might find from the residents in some of their more delirious pop moments.

File Under: Electronic, OST
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tp0009c_SP_Gate_Cover

OST: The Howling (Waxwork) LP
In tomorrow… Waxwork Records is proud to present the Original Motion Picture Score to THE HOWLING. Composed by Pino Donaggio (Carrie, Don’t Look Now, Tourist Trap), Waxwork’s new, deluxe vinyl release of THE HOWLING has been expanded, re-mastered for vinyl, pressed to 180 gram colored vinyl, and features full package artwork by Francesco Francavilla. Directed by Joe Dante (Gremlins, The Burbs), THE HOWLING follows a newswoman sent to a remote mountain resort after a string of fatal incidents with a serial killer, unaware that the resort inhabitants are werewolves. THE HOWLING is regarded as one of the greatest werewolf films of all time, and since it’s 1981 release, has accumulated a cult following. The success of THE HOWLING aided in propelling director Joe Dante’s career, and prompted Warner Bros. to hire him to direct GREMLINS. The score by Pino Donaggio blends classic-horror orchestral cues as well as minimal synth and sound effects. The new Waxwork Records release of THE HOWLING is expanded with 12 bonus tracks previously unavailable of the original 1981 soundtrack LP.

File Under: OST
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perfect-blue

OST: Perfect Blue (Tiger Lab) LP
In tomorrow… Well over a year in the making, Tiger Lab Vinyl and Madhouse Production Studios teamed up to present Masahiro Ikumi’s original score to to the classic 1997 psychological thriller on vinyl for the first time ever. Once again, Tiger Lab enlisted the impeccable work of Heba Kadry of Timeless Mastering NYC to remaster Ikumi’s mesmerizing compositions. Not so different from the sounds of Brooklyn’s own Sacred Bones or the Tri Angle Records catalog, Ikumi’s score is an electronic tour de force filled with ambient layers, eerie vocal choirs, infectious rhythms, and ghostly melodies. A short but powerful listen (six tracks clocking in at 31 minutes), PERFECT BLUE will haunt your speakers for days.

File Under: OST
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confessione

OST: Confessione di un Commissario di Polizia al Procuratore Della Repubblica (Four Flies) LP
In tomorrow… One of the rarest and most beautiful library soundtracks composed by Riz Ortolani for the crime noir film, Confessione Di Un Commissario Di Polizia Al Procuratore Della Repubblica, directed in 1971 by Damiano Damiani, with Franco Nero, Martin Balsam and Marilù Tolo. A tense and dramatic that’s interspersed with explosive jazz-funk and beat grooves. A must-have for any serious Italian sound digger!

File Under: OST, Library
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inside_out_discs_5_newsletter_1024x1024

OST: Inside Out (Mondo) 7″s
In tomorrow… Mondo in collaboration with Walt Disney Records is proud to present the Inside Out 7-Inch Single series. Each featuring Michael Giacchino’s theme from Disney•Pixar’s Inside Out “Bundle Of Joy” and a exclusive B-Side. Featuring artwork by Phantom City Creative, inspired by classic album covers. Composed by Michael Giacchino, the theme from Inside Out is an absolute earworm. Capturing the whimsy of childhood is no small task, but Giacchino is able to craft a score that is emotionally resonant (no pun intended).

File Under: OST, Disney

evelyn

OST: The Night Evelyn Came Out of the Grave (Death Waltz) LP
In tomorrow… Death Waltz Recording Company is proud to exhume another classic soundtrack from the world of horror cinema with Bruno Nicolai’s incredible score to the 1981 Emilio Miraglia giallo The Night Evelyn Came Out Of The Grave (aka La Notte Che Evelyn Usci Dalla Tomba). The film is as mad as its title; Evelyn is dead before it starts and her previously institutionalized husband Alan, who has begun to murder strippers as a form of therapy, is duped by his cousin who wants to rid of his heir. Oh, and there’s the matter of Evelyn’s resurrection and a whole dose of other murders – it’s unreal.Adding to the surrealism of the situation is Nicolai’s deranged score that mixes super effective jarring orchestral with electronic effects and speed jazz that has truly disconcerting time signatures. It’s absolutely creepy and utterly terrifying with queasy quivering synthesizers that sound like an entire waves of insects and the juxtaposition of a fantastic bass line with a sawing string effect that is just sickening. And then there’s the beautiful typical romantic giallo melody that really stands out, with vocals courtesy of the iconic Edda Dell’Orso. (Charlie Bridgen – Editor: Films On Wax)

File Under: OST
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OST: Star Trek II – Wrath of Khan (Mondo) LP
In tomorrow… This year marks the 50th Anniversary of Gene Roddenberry’s inimitable Star Trek franchise and Mondo is honored to kick the year off with an expanded soundtrack release of arguably one of the greatest chapters in Trek history: The Wrath Of Khan. This expanded edition soundtrack features audio never before released on vinyl. This deluxe 2XLP vinyl release features original artwork by Matt Taylor, and has been remastered for vinyl by James Plotkin.

File Under: OST
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malibu

Anderson .Paak: Malibu (Steel Wool) LP
Finally available again! Welcome to Malibu by Anderson .Paak, the second installment and full sound recording album from OBE partnered with Steel Wool Entertainment and ArtClub International. This new album by the hip-hop/Nu R&B wunderkind features production from 9th Wonder, DJ Khalil, Madlib, Kaytranada, Pomo, Dem Jointz, Callum Conner, Hi-Tek and The FreeNationals while featured vocalists include ScHoolboy Q, Talib Kweli, BJ The Chicago Kid, Rhapsody and The Game. Malibu is the maturation of .Paak’s journey from soul and R&B over into hip-hop and even modern dance, all the while giving listeners a deep look into his personal experience. Dive into the deepness that makes Malibu a special time and place, and enjoy!

File Under: Hip Hop, R&B
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venice

Anderson .Paak: Venice (Obe) LP
Venice is the breakout 2014 debut album from Los Angeles, CA Afro-Korean hip-hop/Nu R&B wunderkind Anderson Paak whose production and vocals were famously featured all over Dr. Dre’s long awaited Compton. His eclectic style, songwriting and production abilities, and musical chops allow him to effortlessly blend genres borrowing from hip hop, alt-rock, R&B, jazz and electronica. Supported by the seductive singles “Drugs” and “Miss Right.” For fans of The Weeknd, Miguel and Frank Ocean.

File Under: Hip Hop, R&B
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awa

Awa Poulo: Poulo Warali (Awesome Tapes From Africa) LP
Awa Poulo is a singer of Peulh origin from Dilly commune, Mali, near the border with Mauritania. Largely pastoral and often nomadic, Peulh (or Fula) speaking peoples are found from Senegal to Ethiopia but predominate in the Sahel region of West Africa. Awesome Tapes From Africa is proud to release Poulo’s newest recording of highly virtuosic folk-pop, fresh from the studio, broadcasting her vision of Peulh music beyond the grazing grounds and central markets of her remote home region in southwestern Mali. It’s not very common to find a female singer performing publicly among the Peulh. But Poulo’s mother’s co-wife is Inna Baba Coulibaly, who is a celebrated singer most Malian music fans know. Coulibaly herself was brought into music by forces outside her control when a regional music contest required an entry from her village and she was chosen to be a singer. So, set in motion by a surprising series of events, young Poulo’s entree into the music world was auspicious as she gained popularity across the region. After several locally released tapes and CDs, this record is Poulo’s first internationally-distributed record. On Poulo Warali, she and her band combine the hallmarks of Peulh music – warm flute floating over cross-rhythmic n’goni (lute) riffs and resonant calabash gourd hand percussion – with broader Malian sounds like lightly-distorted guitar and a heavier, rollicking inertia. Shape-shifting layers of rhythm and woody overtones match Poulo’s commanding voice in a jocular yet deliberate dance. This is a relatively rare example of Mailian Peulh music played in a modern, cosmopolitan context, reflecting the mixed society of Dilly, where Bambara, Soninke and Peulh-speaking people live among each other. Poulo’s conscious lyrics about community concerns speak to the distinctive identity of her broadly-flung people. While Peulh represents less than 10% of Maili’s melting pot of languages, the dynamic music here powerfully resonates well beyond the linguistic borders.

File Under: Africa, Afrobeat
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rhead

Rhead Brothers: Black Shaheen (Preservation) LP
In tomorrow… Preservation Records are so proud to offer, for the first time, the official release of the Black Shaheen album. It was recorded shortly after the Dedicate album, but unfortunately it was shelved by EMI. Only a handful releases was uncovered. Recorded in the late 70’s in the legendary Muscle Shoals studio, this album represents some of the finest smoothest, funkiest blue eyed soul’n AOR ever committed to wax.

File Under: Soul, R&B
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lion

Roaring Lion: Cairi Calypso (Asherah) LP
In tomorrow… Roaring Lion was born Rafael Arius Cairi Llama Deleon on February 22, 1908 in Aroquita, Trinidad, an area in the northern hills of the island country. “Cairi,” where this compilation gets its title, was another name for Trinidad in the indigenous tongue of the island. Lion, a Caribbean Creole, spent much of his early life in orphanages before being adopted by Muslim Indian parents from the migrant working class in San Fernando. This unusual upbringing and displacement greatly influenced his compositions and performances, which subsequently influenced Calypso music as a whole since Lion became such a looming figure in its popular development. Inspired by early, mostly unrecorded practitioners like King Fando and Lionel Belasco, Lion started writing and performing his own music and adaptations in the 1920’s. As a composer, Lion stood out ahead of the pack with his lyrical wit and a rare ability to sight-read and draft music to paper. By helping to create the “War”-style of Calypso in which two performers would “battle” each other lyrically between 78rpm releases, his influence persevered into similar battles in Reggae and Hip Hop cultures decades later. By the 1930’s, the period from which this music is culled, Lion became one of the first Calypso musicians to record and perform in the United States. Despite his humble beginnings, Roaring Lion’s fame grew with each passing year, and he became a figurehead of Calypso as its popularity grew in the U.S. and Europe. These early recordings are a glimpse of the Lion coming into his own, showing all the swagger and bravado of a young man ready to become an international star, while also expressing the realities of working class life from the Trinidad of his youth.

File Under: Calypso
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run-the-jewels

Run The Jewels: 3 (Run The Jewels) LP
In tomorrow??? After two years off, Killer Mike and El-P – known collectively as Run The Jewels – return with their highly anticipated third studio album, Run The Jewels 3, which comes preceded by the Boots-featured “2100,” “Talk To Me” and “Legend Has It.” Additional guests on the record include Joi Gilliam, Danny Brown, Tunde Adebimpe, Trina and Kamasi Washington. Previously, the duo have released Run The Jewels and Run The Jewels 2, two of the most critically-acclaimed albums of their respective years (2013 and 2014), while each artist has continued to expand their place in the sphere of social commentary. Killer Mike spent a significant portion of the last year, in which RTJ didn’t release an album, urgently supporting one-time Democratic Presidential candidate Bernie Sanders. Concurrently, El-P has expressed his own stout views on the nation’s glaringly changing political landscape. That said, their return to the scene is now imminent.

File Under: Hip Hop
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spectrum

Spectrum: Forever Alien (1972) LP
When Spacemen 3—the seminal, drone-indulgent English psych duo comprised of Peter Kember and Jason Pierce — split in 1991, Pierce shuffled off to acclaim in Spiritualized. Meanwhile, Kember charted a less predictable course. As Sonic Boom, he released Spectrum in 1990, then, after taking a liking to that handle, released Soul Kill (Glide Divide) as Spectrum in 1992. Kemper alternated between those monikers and Experimental Audio Research (E.A.R.) throughout the 1990s, building a rich, probing catalog of synth and electronic explorations of which 1997’s Forever Alien is an undeniable highpoint. With theremin, vocoder, and an array of modular analog synthesizers (depicted lovingly in the cover art) Kemper, along with Alf Hardy and Pete Bassman, fused kosmische abstraction and the pulsation of minimalist composition to more traditional psych elements epitomized by early Pink Floyd. Landing between the unfettered experiments of E.A.R. and Spacemen 3’s songcraft (“How Does it Feel?” is scarily reimagined), Kemper crafts unnerving atmosphere on the title track and an enduring catalog high point on the consummate opener, “Feels Like I’m Slipping Away.” Forever Alien leaves no doubts about the reasons for Kemper’s sought-after production today (he played a vital role for Animal Collective and sculpted Panda Bear’s most recent album)—nor the essential status of his post- Spacemen 3 output.

File Under: Electronic, Spacemen 3
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NEW 12"TEMP_4-21-2016

Stone Alliance: s/t (Tidal Wave) LP
In tomorrow… Tidal Waves Music proudly presents the reissue of this long out of print Jazz/Funk classic originally released on PM Records in 1976. Featuring an all-star line up comprised out of Steve Grossman (best known for his saxophone performances & recordings with Miles Davis), Gene Perla (Nina Simone) & percussionist Don Alias (Jaco Pastorius Big Band, Blue Note). Included is a hip rendering of Stevie Wonder’s “Creepin’” & the album’s best-known song “Sweetie Pie” (mentioned in the track ‘Root Down’ by the Beastie Boys & sampled by rap-outfits like Original Flavor, Leaders of the New School amongst others). Stone Alliance’s eponymous debut album hits hard like a sonic hurricane, this landmark album is a rebellious effort and a must hear for ’70s jazz fans. Officially licensed from PM Records and featuring the original artwork created by Anne Maria Schnider. Now back available as a deluxe limited vinyl edition (1000 copies) for the first time since 1976.

File Under: Jazz, Funk
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carnet-turistico

Amedeo Tommasi/Gerardo Iacoucci: Carnet Turistico (Four Flies) LP
In tomorrow… From the legendary DENEB series, comes some of the grooviest Italian library ever. Amedeo Tommasi and Gerardo Iacoucci (alias H. Caiage) at their best. An explosion of heavy organ sounds, jazz & psych-beat, with killer drumming breaks and mellow tunes. Highly recommended for dj’s! From the legendary DENEB series, comes some of the grooviest Italian library ever. Amedeo Tommasi and Gerardo Iacoucci (alias H. Caiage) at their best. An explosion of heavy organ sounds, jazz & psych-beat, with killer drumming breaks and mellow tunes. Highly recommended for dj’s!

File Under: Library
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tycho

Tycho: Epoch (Ghostly) LP
Epoch is the final album in the trilogy beginning with 2011’s Dive, then 2014’s Awake. This period between Dive and Epoch marks a significant maturation for Scott Hansen’s continually expanding project, one that has taken him from a solo performer and bedroom artist to fronting a live 4-piece band on large stages across the world. Epoch hones the sonic aesthetic of Dive while drawing on the kinetic energy of Awake, it explores darker themes and new musical territory. The album was produced and recorded by Hansen predominantly in his home studio in Berkeley, CA. The album was arranged alongside long time collaborator and partner in the project, Zac Brown. Brown contributed bass and guitar parts to the songwriting process. Rory O’Connor performed drums on the album. Hansen sees Epoch as a multi-dimensional artistic vision at the confluence of his graphic design work via ISO50 and music with Tycho. The graphic presentation of album artwork is as important as the music itself. The keystone is the central image of Epoch and the colors scheme red and black. This is a stark contrast to the almost rainbow palette of Awake.

File Under: Electronic, Ambient
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u3erk5

UJ3RK5: Live From the Commodore (Primary Information) LP
A legendary 1980 performance (opening for Gang Of Four) by this strongly visual Canadian post-punk / art-rock group with an affinity for Devo, Talking Heads, and the Vancouver School of photo conceptualism. KITTY BYRNE (drums), RODNEY GRAHAM (guitar), FRANK CRASS (guitar), DANICE MACLEOD (violin), FRANK RAMIREZ (vocals), JEFF WALL (vocals, keyboards), IAN WALLACE (bass), and DAVID WISDOM (vocals, keyboards). Pronounced “you jerk” (the five is silent), UJ3RK5 formed in Vancouver in 1978, originating from Ramirez and Graham’s guitar-and-bongo duo, THE GENTLEMEN TWO, with occasional participation by friends such as MEFV HUTCHINSON and author WILLIAM GIBSON. In addition to appearing on Canadian compilations, in 1980 the band released a self-titled, four-song EP on Quintessence Records, reissued that same year by PolyGram. This sound board recording includes “Naum Gabo,” “The Anglican,” “Booty Dread,” the Dan Graham-inspired “Eisenhower and the Hippies,” and eight previously unreleased tracks. Edition of 600.

File Under: Post Punk, No Wave

cometa

Various: Rare Music from the Cometa’s Archives (Cometa) LP
In tomorrow… The world of Italian library music is a confusing, mysterious and expensive one. It’s confusing as some tracks appear across different libraries, some appear in the UK or in France, It’s mysterious because there is little documentation about anything, old labels still emerge out of nowhere, and often in Italy no one knows who owns what or why or how. And it’s expensive to buy original Italian library records, even more expensive if they are good. One of the most collectible and consistently entertaining Italian labels was SR, set up as part of the Sermi Cable Company in the late 1960s. This is the compilation of music from that very company. Many of the music from that original catalogue is now owned by Cometa. But not all of it. Bearing that in mind we believe this is the best compilation we could put together using the resources available. The music is incredible. And beautiful. And not expensive now. And that’s why we did it. Killer percussion, superb jazz, odd global sound, beautiful library music.

File Under: Italian, Library

…..Restocks…..

Aphex Twin: Selected Ambient Works II (1972) LP
Olafur Arnalds: Island Songs (Mercury) LP
Autechre: Amber (Warp) LP
Badbadnotgood: IV (Arts & Crafts) LP
Battles: Mirrored (Warp) LP
Beirut: Gulag Orchestra (Ba Da Bing) LP
Beirut: Flying Club Cup (Ba Da Bing) LP
Bing & Ruth: City Lake (RVNG Intl) LP
Black Angels: Passover (Light in the Attic) LP
Black Keys: Attack & Release (Nonesuch) LP
Bon Iver: 22/Million (Jagjaguwar) LP
Johnny Cash: Man Comes Around (American) LP
Johnny Cash: A Hundred Highways (American) LP
Johnny Cash: At San Quentin (Columbia) LP
Johnny Cash: Now Here’s Johnny Cash (Dol) LP
Leonard Cohen: Songs of Love & Hate (Columbia) LP
Leonard Cohen: You Want It Darker (Columbia) LP
Constantines: Kensington Heights (Art & Crafts) LP
D’Angelo: Voodoo (Modern Classics) LP
Betty Davis: The Columbia Years (Light in the Attic) LP
Betty Davis: s/t (Light in the Attic) LP
Face to Face: Big Choice (Fat Wreck)LP
Face to Face: Don’t Turn Away (Fat Wreck) LP
Face to Face: s/t (Fat Wreck) LP
Faust: s/t (Lilith) LP
Fuzz: s/t (In the Red) LP
Fuzz: II (In the Red) LP
Serge Gainsbourg: Historie de Melody Nelson (Light in the Attic) LP
Galaxie 500: On Fire (20/20/20) LP
Galaxie 500: This is Our Music (20/20/20) LP
Galaxie 500: Today (20/20/20) LP
Grizzly Bear: Yellow House (Warp) LP
Lee Hazlewood: Cowboy in Sweden (Light in the Attic) LP
Bert Jansch: s/t (Superior Viaduct) LP
Jim James: Eternally Even (Universal) LP
Norah Jones: Day Breaks (Blue Note) LP
Kaleo: A/B (Atlantic) LP
King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard: Quarters (Castle Face) LP
King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard: Nonagon Infinity (ATO) LP
The Louvin Brothers: Satan is Real (Light in the Attic) LP
Barbara Lynn: Here is Barbara Lynn (Light in the Attic) LP
Magnolia Electric Co.: What Comes After The Blues (Secretly Canadian) LP
Angel Olsen: Halfway Home (Bathetic) LP
Angel Olsen: Strange Cacti (Bathetic) LP
Oranssi Pazuzu: Varahtelija (20 Buck Spin) LP
Tom Perry & The Heart Breakers: Volume 1 (Universal) Boxset
Public Image Ltd: First Issue (Light in the Attic) LP
Red Hot Chili Peppers: Blood Sugar Sex Magic (Universal) LP
Replacements: Twin/Tone Years (Rhino) LP
Arthur Russell: Calling Out of Context (Audika) LP
Arthur Russell: World of Echo (Audika) LP
Scientist: Introducing Scientist (Superior Viaduct) LP
Sturgill Simpson: A Sailors Guide… (Atlantic) LP
Sturgill Simpson: Metamodern Sounds (Thirty Tigers) LP
The Smiths: Queen is Dead (Rhino) LP
The Smiths: Strangeways Here We Come (Rhino) LP
Songs: Ohia: Ghost Tropic (Secretly Canadian) LP
Songs: Ohia: s/t (Secretly Canadian) LP
Songs: Ohia: Hecia & Griper (Secretly Canadian) LP
Sonic Youth: Daydream Nation (Goofin) LP
Jim Sullivan: UFO (Light in the Attic) LP
Talking Heads: Remain In Light (Rhino) LP
This Heat: s/t (Modern Classics) LP
Tinariwen: Radio Tisdas Sessions (Modern Classics) LP
Various: I Am The Center (Light in the Attic) 3LP Box
Various: (The Microcosm) (Light in the Attic) 3LP Box

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…..news letter #769 – decembur…..

Holy moly! Thanks to everyone who came out last weekend for our big anniversary sale! What a bonkers weekend. Lots of wonderful folks dropped in, and lots of wonderful albums went out the door. BUT! Lots of wonderful albums have come in since, and lots of wonderful used records have been put out in the bins. You should check out our Instagram for a video of what went out this week, some choice rarities this week.

Also, NO ONE HAS CLAIMED THE REGA RP1 WE ARE GIVING AWAY!!! Check your tickets against the number posted on Monday on our website, Facebook, Twitter, & Instagram! Since, it’s Christmas,  I am going to redraw on Monday if no one has claimed the turntable by then.

…..pick of the week…..

supersilent

Supersilent: 13 (Smalltown Supersound) LP
You can’t accuse Supersilent of keeping the noise down. Ever since the ‘Big Crunch’ of 1997, when Norway’s finest free music outfit came together for the first time, their unpredictable noises and rapturous textures have been heard all around the world—and maybe somewhere outside the stratosphere too. Currently a trio featuring Helge Sten, Arve Henriksen and Stale Storlokken, Supersilent’s album number 13 marks a turning point in the group’s two-decade career. After a dozen recordings under the umbrella of the diverse Rune Grammofon label, Supersilent have now signed to Oslo based Smalltown Supersound, where they join the likes of Lindstrøm, DJ Harvey, Prins Thomas and Andre Bratten as labelmates. Supersilent is a platform for a highly physical improvised electronic music, made by a trio that’s a kind of supergroup of Norwegian players in their own right.

File Under: Electronic, Improv, Jazz, Ambient
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…..new arrivals…..

amber

Autechre: Amber (Warp) LP
1994’s Amber, the second full-length from Autechre, returns to vinyl after being out of print since 2001. Amber contains 11 tracks of sparse Ae minimalist machine modules that blur the boundaries between isolationist electronica and richly vivid techno soundscapes. Considered by many fans to be the most crucial recording from the group, it contains some of their most immersive soundscapes to date. Steering away from the post-hardcore dynamics that shone through on Incunabula, Amber moves further away from anything resembling ‘techno’ and more into territories of abstract ambience. These 11 crystal-like cubes of sound came together to produce some of the most mind-bendingly hypnotic sounds to be committed to wax during the 90’s. Placing Ae up in the ranks of legendary composers such as Steve Reich and Manuel Gottsching as well as their Artificial Intelligence contemporaries with whom they were crafting the building blocks of the future. There is something uniquely immersive about Amber, it’s almost as if as you are playing it the sounds are fading away before they even begin. When played from the start you can lose a lot of time within the endless gradients that adorn its cover, before the sounds just seemingly, disappear. Included with this release is a download of an original Autechre live set, previously only available in the Autechre webstore, with artwork by long time creative collaborators The Designers Republic.

File Under: Electronic, Experimental
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autechre

Autechre: Incunabula (Warp) LP
Incunabula, the debut full-length offering from Autechre is finally back on vinyl after being out of print since 2001. Having first emerged onto a post-acid house 1993, Incunabula was released as part 7 of the now legendary Artificial Intelligence series of albums and compilations from Warp. A series that gave us early records from artists who went on to sculpt the electronic landscape both in and out of the club. Incunabula set the tone for the following landmark albums from Ae, huge caustic dissections of sound that almost resemble vast mathematical equations more than they do club fodder (though tracks like the breakbeat whip crack of “Doctrine” and the acidic euphoria of “Maetl,” which when deployed by the right DJ will go off). For those just arriving at the edge of Ae’s world and are looking for an entry point into the sprawling discography of the group, or those of you looking to delve into the pre-MaxMSP archives, this is the record for you. This truly is a landmark album of UK electronica, a legendary recording that still even after 26 years still sounds like a future we are yet to arrive at. Included with this release is a download of an original Autechre live set, previously only available in the Autechre webstore, with artwork by long time creative collaborators The Designers Republic.

File Under: Electronic, Experimental
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trirepatae

Autechre: Tri Repetae (Warp) LP
1995’s Tri Repetae, the third album from Autechre, returns to vinyl after being out of print since 2001. On reflection, Tri Repeate stands tall as one of the most out-there and boundary-pushing releases from Ae ever. Going back to the group’s roots as b-boy’s, Tri Repetae features ten variations on street sounds from hip-hop and techno to industrial and jungle. Released at a time when producers were ripe with ideas for cosmic breakbeat experimentation, the album mixed the glitchy twisted dynamics of EPs such as the criminal justice bill protest Anti and sculpted a long player that resembles some of the most ‘floor friendly’ Ae to ever grace a packed nightclub soundsystem. The ten tracks pulled influence from previous outings, from the glacial Amber chug of “Overand” to the Incunabula acid of “Leterel.” But the overall sound is one of mixing influence from the avant-garde of Iannis Xenakis, Edgard Varese and Tod Dockstar with the mid 90’s post-hardcore sound of jungle. For anyone looking to get to grips with Ae but wanting something that bridges the gap between the early analogue escapism and the latter deconstructionist stance of elseq, Tri Repetae is the perfect point to dive into. Mixing elements of groups such as Coil at their most industrial, the austere techno of the Downwards crew and the cold yet funky electro of Man Parrish, they composed an album that still, twenty one years since its release, has one of the most singular sounds for anything resembling electro techno, and what other group can you think of who have you can say have ever managed that? Included with this release is a download of an original Autechre live set, previously only available in the Autechre webstore, with artwork by long time creative collaborators The Designers Republic.

File Under: Experimental, Electronic
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baird

Baird Sisters: Until You Find Yourself (Ba Da Bing) LP
Considering they’ve collaborated ever since they were kids living under the same roof, The Baird Sisters arguably could have made an album like Until You Find Your Green years ago. They’ve released two live recordings (the first recorded by their dad) and made plenty of demos, but this marks the first time Laura and Meg Baird decided to write and record a full-length on their own terms. The songs, recorded in Laura’s house, have a familial intimacy joined by skillful depth, the ideal blend for a folk record, an equal mix of comfort and talent. Growing up surrounded by music, the sisters have traveled separate paths while remaining close. Laura studied piano and trombone in school and has collaborated with Glenn Jones on his recent releases. Meg has played in Espers, Watery Love, and currently drums/sings in Heron Oblivion. She’s also released a few solo albums on Drag City. Laura’s first solo record will be released by Ba Da Bing early next year. These recordings capture the complexity of seventies progressive folk rock, emphasizing acoustic instrumentation with a lack of self-consciousness that can only come from a private domestic environment. Meg plays guitar,Laura banjo, singing in harmony, and ornamenting their songs with flute, cello, fiddle, mandolin, upright bass, percussion and a cricket chorus. Until You Find Your Green’s songs seem traditional, but that’s deceptive, and they unfold in greater depths the deeper attention paid to them.

File Under: Folk
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guerro

Beck: Guerro (Universal) LP
Since introducing himself to the world in 1994 with his genre-defying, multi-platinum debut, Mellow Gold, Beck has blazed a path into the future while simultaneously foraging through the past. Throughout his singular career he has utilized all manners and eras of music, blurring boundaries and shattering expectations with each album. From the world-tripping atmospherics of 1998’s Mutations and the florescent funk of 1999’s Midnite Vultures through the somber reflections of 2002’s Sea Change, 2005’s platinum tour de force Guero and 2006’s sprawling The Information, no Beck record has ever sounded like its predecessor. In the fall of 2016, UMe will begin to reissue Beck’s entire envelope-pushing DGC/Geffen/Interscope catalog on vinyl, beginning in October with the trifecta of his 1996 Grammy Award-winning game-changer, Odelay, 2002’s beautiful, brokenhearted, Sea Change, and 2005’s Guero, which saw Beck reunite with the Dust Brothers. Sea Change will be released as a double LP while Guero will be made available for the first time ever as a single LP. Mellow Gold, Mutations, Midnight Vultures, The Information and Modern Guilt will follow at a later date. Beck kept fans and critics guessing about how he’d follow up Sea Change and in 2005 released the genre-mashing Guero which shot to No. 2 on the Billboard Top 200 – his highest charting album to date. Beck’s eighth album saw him reuniting with the Dust Brothers with an assist from producer Tony Hoffer (Midnite Vultures), for a tour de force of Latin rhythms, rhymes, guitars, beats, samples, 8-bit electronics, turntables and vocoder for a fun and freewheeling ride through rock, hip-hop, boss nova, country-blues and soul. Album opener and lead single, “E-Pro” went to No. 1 on the Billboard Modern Rock Chart, while “Girl,” “Hell Yes,” “Go It Alone” (featuring Jack White on bass) and more became instant fan favorites. The album was a hit with critics as well with New York magazine enthusing, “Beck integrates his personae into a fairly seamless whole, and his knack for synthesizing disparate musical elements (hip-hop, robot funk, blues, country, jazz, garage rock, etc.) extends beyond samples and individual tracks. The songs migrate smoothly from one to the next; there aren’t any throwaway numbers to sabotage the album’s momentum; the whole thing coheres,” while Rolling Stone dubbed it “his liveliest and jumpiest music in years.”

File Under: Indie Rock
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built

Built To Spill: Ancient Melodies of the Future (1972) LP
Formed in 1992 in Boise, Idaho by guitarist and vocalist Doug Martsch, Built to Spill has since evolved radically, shed members, linked eras, and all the while endured as one of the most tuneful and rewarding acts of the lauded Northwest indie-rock tradition. The group signed to Warner Brothers in 1995, but Martsch was wise enough to retain control over production, and by 1999 he’d helmed the group towards commercial and critical success with Keep it Like a Secret. It was a touchstone album, and yet 2001’s Ancient Melodies Of The Future bested that career highlight with considerable grace and craft. Marsch’s studio proficiency is immediately evident in the alternately delicate and devastating mix of mellotron, keyboard, and inventive guitar overdubs that characterize Ancient Melodies Of The Future’s sonic palette. Melodic curlicues distinguish the minor hit “Strange,” while woozy grooves propel the mid-tempo ballad “Trimmed and Burning” through an incendiary solo section. As the album title suggests, Ancient Melodies Of The Future stands outside of history in a realm of its own.

File Under: Indie Rock
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bush

Kate Bush: Before the Dawn (Concord) 4LP
Before the Dawn was recorded during the incredible run of 22 sold-out shows performed by Kate Bush at London’s Hammersmith Apollo in 2014. In March 2014 Kate announced plans to perform 15 shows in London in August and September that year, her first live shows since 1979. The shows sold out so quickly that a further 7 were immediately added, with all shows selling out in 15 minutes. The first night of the shows prompted a complete media frenzy with the Evening Standard declaring that the show was “an extraordinary mix of magical ideas, stunning visuals, attention to detail and remarkable music – she was so obviously, so unambiguously brilliant, it made last night something to tell the grandchildren about.” Later that year the show won the special Editor’s award at the highly prestigious London Theatre Awards, the only contemporary music show to do so. The audio document of those mesmerizing, historic shows is now presented on the 4LP box set Before The Dawn. Produced by Bush herself, nothing on the 29-track program was re-recorded or overdubbed and the sound here is astonishing. Features modern takes on such beloved songs from her extraordinary catalog as “Running Up That Hill,” “Hounds of Love,” “And Dream of Sheep,” “Waking The Witch” and “Cloudbusting” among others.

File Under: Rock, Pop
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drakulas

Drakulas: Raw Wave (Dirtnap) LP
Drakulas present Raw Wave, a collection of songs told from the different points of view of various characters in a fictional metropolis in the not-too-distant past. A bustling city center not unlike Times Square in the ’70s filled with sin and sex is the backdrop where gangs, street preachers, sex addicts, pimps, prostitutes and pornographers live and work. People of this world describe the time period of these songs as the Raw Wave—a wave of new analog technology that hit the city, wiping away many of the mores and pretense of the past. Drakulas are from Austin, TX, and feature members of Riverboat Gamblers and Rise Against, amongst others. This is their debut LP, following a 7-inch on Red Scare. They pretty much nail the sound for which the Texas branch of the extended Dirtnap family is infamous—vibrant, high energy, and dangerously catchy. Raw Wave is tailor-made for fans of The Marked Men, The Dickies, and vintage-era Riverboat Gamblers / High Tension Wires. And then there are the lyrics: high-concept / low-brow weirdness that could only have come from the twisted mind of Gamblers frontman Mike Wiebe. Call it a super-group if you must, but don’t call it a side-project.

File Under: Punk
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eye

Eye: Other Sky (Ba Da Bing) LP
Other Sky is Eye’s masterpiece. Recorded 12 years after their initial formation, the Dunedin trio of Peter Stapleton (The Terminals, The Pin Group, Flies Inside The Sun), Peter Porteous (Empirical) and Jon Chapman (Double Leopards, Rory Storm and the Invaders) have never sounded more on target and immense. Not that their past releases are anything shabby! With this record, there’s a distinct communication going on between the players as they freely explore the dregs and corners of what is arguably still considered rock music. Recorded at The Anteroom, an old Masonic lodge in Port Chalmers, it took a steady three years to cobble together. The five tracks here alternately strike with intensity and drift with menace, with Eye casting new lines of cohering musical language into a sea of babble. Be prepared to transcend.

 File Under: Rock
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feral

Feral Ohms: Live in San Francisco (Castle Face) LP
The white-hot set of Live In San Francisco not only features Feral Ohms’ shaggy guitar heroics captured directly to ferromagnetic medium for your grokking, but also happens to be their debut record. From zero to vertical from the get of the set, the ’Ohms muscle this one out fast and hot, featuring Ethan Miller of Howlin Rain, Comets On Fire and recent psych-folk breakouts Heron Oblivion. Miller gives free rein to his most pyro-psycho-technic guitar fancies, not to mention a full-throated demon-worthy wail, with Chris Johnson on drums (previously of Drunk Horse and currently of Andy Human and the Reptoids) full MC5 style with freight train pummel, with rides so heavy in the mix it sounds like early Damned. Josh Haynes (of the unGoogle-able Nudity) is a total forehead smacker on bass as he bi-amps a filthy sound while wearing some weirdo humility leather strap face harness—it’s just dirty. “Teenage God Born To Die” indeed. Expect great things from them and this concise set is just long enough to get a dander up for a proper full length, set for release on Ethan’s Silver Current label in 2017. In the meantime, keep an eye out for their live shows and don’t forget the ear plugs, they’ll singe your minge…

File Under: Psych, Garage
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flesheaters

Flesh Eaters: Forever Came Today(Superior Viaduct) LP
In the wake of the star-filled A Minute To Pray A Second To Die, The Flesh Eaters’ frontman Chris D. assembled a leaner, meaner band to deliver his next unbound vision. Forever Came Today, the group’s third full-length album, was originally released on Ruby Records in 1982 and features Don Kirk on guitar, Robyn Jameson on bass, Chris Wahl on drums, Steve Berlin on sax and Chris D.’s unmistakable voice. “My Life To Live” and “Shallow Water” are masterfully wrought punk tunes, reverberating with heart-wrenching vocals that turn on a dime from desperate whispers to blood-curdling screams. “Drag My Name In Mud” dives deeper into full-throttle rock demonology, bluesy primeval swagger and obsessive imagery, inspired in equal parts by William S. Burroughs and Edgar Allan Poe. This first-time vinyl reissue has been carefully remastered and comes with lyric sheet. Forever Came Today is the perfect introduction to The Flesh Eaters’ dark sense of humor and positively bleak form of rock ’n’ roll.

File Under: Punk, Rock
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gessesse

Tilahun Gessesse: Sima! (Mississippi) LP
Great songs form one of Ethiopia’s most beloved singers – Talhoun Gessesse (English spelling varies). These recordings span from 1969 to 1975 and cover the range of Talhoun’s styles and moods. Some mystical modal songs, some straight up rockers, and some ballads. All totally killer songs from the golden age of Ethiopian Soul Music. Talhoun’s voice, alongside Mahmoud Ahmed’s, is one of the strongest in the land. Don’t miss out on this monstrously good LP.

File Under: Ethiopia, Jazz
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guebruEmahoy Tsegue-Mariam Guebru: s/t (Mississippi) LP
At last! The second LP in our ongoing series of releases from Mariam – Tsege Gebru! More 1960’s recordings of her truly unique solo piano performances. Mariam – Tsege Gebru is a true original – her playing is somewhere between Erik Satie, Debussy, liturgical music of the Coptic Ethiopian Church, and Ethiopian traditional music. It is some of the most moving piano music you will ever hear! All original compositions available for the first time on vinyl beyond the original early 1960’s editions, which are completely impossible to find. Old school “tip on” cover with gold foil printing. A must have master piece for anyone who needs some spiritual comfort.

File Under: Ethiopia, Traditional, Piano

stormcock

Roy Harper: Stormcock (Science Friction) LP
Stormcock was born in 1969 as Harper began to stretch his wings. He’d been there a few times before, but this time he gave himself the space to go deep and stay there. “Hors D’Oeuvres” is perhaps the lightweight in the collection, but after all, it’s the starter… The Same Old Rock records Harper’s opposition to continued dependence on the cheap opium of convenient mass religion. This year marks two important milestones for Roy Harper – his 75th birthday and 50 years of recording music. To celebrate, Roy will be performing four special concerts in September and releasing the first vinyl reissues of his classic albums, none of which have been available on vinyl for well over 20 years.

File Under: Folk
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lifemask

Roy Harper: Lifemask (Science Friction) LP
Lifemask was made at the height of the ‘flower power’ expression/boom. The songs catalog spontaneous interpretations of how we are interacting with the planet. It was never aimed at mass market and is just a poem for friends and kindred spirits. The poem was inspired by a collage of Geronimo in an eighteenth century English landscape drawing given to Harper by his friend and artist James Edgar whilst he was in the mind altering substances period of his life. Jimmy Page plays throughout. The rest of the album is more conventional in structure, with two songs that are still regularly featured in Harper’s live set list. As a live song Highway Blues is a different song now than the song David Bowie once tried to record. And ‘South Africa’ is a dream come true. A love song to calm the fears and wash away the horror and stain of apartheid. Some of the songs comprised the soundtrack for the movie ‘Made’ which was on general release at the time in which Harper co-starred with Carol White. This year marks two important milestones for Roy Harper – his 75th birthday and 50 years of recording music. To celebrate, Roy will be performing four special concerts in September and releasing the first vinyl reissues of his classic albums, none of which have been available on vinyl for well over 20 years.

File Under: Folk
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flat

Roy Harper: Flat Baroque and Berserk (Science Friction) LP
Flat Baroque and Berserk was the first record of Harper’s to go into the charts. Peter Jenner was assigned by EMI Records to produce the recording – the two have been good friends ever since. EMI Studios, Abbey Road was at that time the most advanced studio in Europe, and over the next ten years Harper was to record in near-perfect conditions. Over those years, the studio buzzed with four separate Beatles, some Stones, The Pink Floyd, Cliff and the Shadows, Gracie Fields, three of four musical knights, Kate Bush, Olivier Newton-John, The Hollies, Yehudi Menuin, Stefan Grapelli, The Plastic Ono Band, Eric Clapton; you name them, they were all there. It was a creative hotbed where the technical staff, headed by Ken Townsend, were second to none. The song that Harper was best known for in those days, ‘I Hate the White Man,’ was recorded live for this album, and still stands as a testament to my lifelong devotion to espousing equal rights for all humans. Harper has long since wondered about the wisdom of stating that you have the capacity to hate your own race for it’s misdemeanours, but as a polemic it has been both an effective tool and somewhere of a place for a humble humanitarian to stand. This year marks two important milestones for Roy Harper – his 75th birthday and 50 years of recording music. To celebrate, Roy will be performing four special concerts in September and releasing the first vinyl reissues of his classic albums, none of which have been available on vinyl for well over 20 years.

File Under: Folk
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cowboy

Lee Hazlewood: Cowboy in Sweden (Light in the Attic) LP
Lee Hazlewood spent a good part of the late 1960s traveling the globe, cutting records and inking business deals. A string of hits with Nancy Sinatra enabled Lee to build a mini media empire Lee Hazlewood Industries and afforded him nearly unlimited resources…for a time. By the end of the decade LHI Records had burned piles of cash, gone through a half dozen distributors and failed to achieve the kind of chart success “Boots” had promised. Fortunately for Lee there was a land where he was still on the top of the charts, a place where women flowed like Brannvin…Sweden was calling. While on an LHI promotional tour in Stockholm, Lee crossed paths with Swedish director Torbjörn Axelman. “I met Lee through my script girl, in Stockholm in 1969,” remembers Axelman. “We noticed we had very many similarities, interests, and the same backgrounds. It led to many productions during our 38 years of close partnership and friendship.” The partnership showed Lee the way forward and allowed him an easy exit strategy from the LHI house of cards that was crumbling in Los Angeles. Light In The Attic Records is proud to continue its Lee Hazlewood Archival Series with this expanded reissue of Cowboy in Sweden. Released as the last LHI LP, Cowboy in Sweden was a soundtrack to the 1970 cult classic film of the same name starring Lee Hazlewood. The film was a surreal psychedelic account of Lee’s journey to his new homeland, while the soundtrack was a perfect compilation of Hazlewood’s strongest songs recorded over a prolific globe trotting three year period. The production scope of the album was the most ambitious of his career, recorded in Paris, London, Los Angeles and Stockholm with a slew of talented session musicians, producers and arrangers. Cowboy in Sweden is quite possibly the purest distillation of the Hazlewood sound; lush melancholy country pop with a pinch of humor (“Pray Them Bars Away”), a dash of bummer (“Cold Hard Times”), some beautiful ladies to sing with (“Leather & Lace” & “Hey Cowboy”) and even a couple anti-war protest songs to be topical (”No Train to Stockholm” & “For A Day Like Today”). The David “Bitter Sweet Symphony” Whitaker arranged orchestral pop of “What’s More I Don’t Need Her” and the stone cold Hazlewood classic “The Night Before” cement the album as Lee’s peak on LHI Records and ironically the label’s swan song.

File Under: Country
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iggy

Iggy & The Stooges: Telluric Chaos (Skydog) LP
Iggy & The Stooges practically invented punk rock.  They split up in 1974.  30 years later, The Stooges reformed, and first released a live album documenting the reunion performing in Japan – appropriately on Skydog Records who released their infamous final gig album ‘Metallic K.O.’ in 1976. Recorded in Tokyo in 2004, the album features 17 tracks over 70+ minutes, including the old Stooges classics plus new songs.  A documentary film on The Stooges, Gimme Danger directed by Jim Jarmusch, is being promoted by Amazon Studios and following film festival showings is released in USA on 28th October and in the UK 18th November.

File Under: Punk, Rawk

jansch

Bert Jansch: It Don’t Bother Me (Superior Viaduct) LP
Bert Jansch recorded his second album in 1965, just after his self-titled debut earlier that same year. The sessions were a step-up from the intimate, field-recording setting of his first album, although still not labored over too much in the studio. “I figured that the faster I put down the tracks, the faster I could get out of the place,” Jansch told NME, “so I just ordered about a dozen bottles of wine, put the microphone in front of me and off I went, for three hours.” The lyrics of It Don’t Bother Me shift vividly between pure poetic imagery and the hollow resonance of pain. The LP’s underrated title song stands as a manifesto for the way Jansch lived at the time. “My Lover,” featuring guitarist John Renbourn, has almost sitar-like drones, while “Lucky Thirteen” is a captivating, melancholy instrumental that shimmers with brilliant fingerpicking. This first-time domestic release is remastered from the original tapes and features liner notes by Richie Unterberger. Bert Jansch’s It Don’t Bother Me remains another essential British folk LP that belongs next to Nick Drake, Roy Harper and John Martyn in every record collection.

File Under: Folk
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swift

Damien Jurado/Richard Swift: Other People’s Songs (Secretly Canadian) LP
Over the weekend of August 21-22, 2010, not long after Damien Jurado and Richard Swift first collaborated to produce Damien’s 2010 record, Saint Bartlett, the pair hunkered down with a 4-track recorder and one Coles 4038 ribbon microphone to record a collection of cover songs that run the gamut from John Denver to Chubby Checker to Kraftwerk. The timing was perfect. On Other People’s Songs Vol 1, we can see the scaffolding of what would become a creative turning point for the pair – later seen with the release of Jurado’s Maraqopa, the first record in his Maraqopa trilogy – less than 2 years later. The opening drum hits of “Be Not So Fearful,” the falsetto vocals of “Sweetness,” and the Spaghetti-Western swing of “Radioactivity” are, by now, hallmarks of the Jurado/Swift sound, but Other People’s Songs Vol 1 is a transitional fossil, a marking of the pair’s collaborative evolution.

File Under: Indie Rock
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khemmis

Khemmis: Hunted (20 Buck Spin) LP
Khemmis’s first album, Absolution, was released by 20 Buck Spin in July 2015 and steamrolled all that came in contact with its unforgettable heaviness and classic melodicism. Virtually unknown outside Denver at the time, by year’s end they had landed in the #9 spot on Decibel’s annual top 40 albums of the year. Hunted reveals a Khemmis fortified in its purpose and vision, forging an unrivaled synthesis between immense doom riffs and Maiden-esque harmony. Overall song length has increased, yielding expansive arrangements and dramatic storms of elegance and melancholy. Not content to plod through a sea of tears, and always a rock band first, they approach a High On Fire-like pace with the pummeling “Three Gates.” The lauded singing of vocalist Philip Pendergast reaches ascendent new heights on tracks like “Candlelight” and “Beyond The Door,” while the tasteful use of harsh vocals remains, providing a dark, foreboding contrast. The thirteen-minute title track closes the album with an epic stunner. Hunted will solidify Khemmis’s place at the vanguard of doom’s most notable modernmanifestations, in large part because they transcend the label itself.

File Under: Metal
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afrodisiac

Fela Kuti: Afrodisiac (Knitting Factory) LP
The four (lengthy, as usual) songs occupying this album were originally recorded in Nigeria as 45 rpm releases. Afrodisiac consists of re-recordings of these, done in London in the early ’70s. While it’s true that Fela Kuti’s albums from this period are pretty similar to each other, in their favor they’re not boring. These four workouts, all sung in Nigerian, are propulsive mixtures of funk and African music, avoiding the homogeneity of a lot of funk and African records of later vintage, done with nonstop high energy. The interplay between horns, electric keyboards, drums, and Kuti’s exuberant vocals gives this a jazz character without sacrificing the earthiness that makes it danceable as well. “Jeun Ko Ku (Chop’n Quench)” became Kuti’s first big hit in Nigeria, selling 200,000 copies in its first six months in its initial version.

File Under: Afrobeat
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gentleman

Fela Kuti: Gentleman (Knitting Factory) LP
Fela Kuti’s rich discography stretches from the mid 1960s with Fela Ransome Kuti & His Highlife Rakers, to the early 1990s with Egypt 80, and there are masterpieces all along the way. But the 1970s, with Africa 70 and then Afrika 70, was the decade during which Fela’s Afrobeat went through its most dramatic changes – musically and politically. It begins with 1971’s Shakara and ends with 1980’s I.T.T. (International Thief Thief). It also includes London Scene (1972), Afrodisiac and Gentleman (both 1973) and Upside Down (1976). The penultimate selection is 1976’s Zombie, which was a huge hit in Nigeria. The title track of this excellent album has often been hailed as Fela’s masterpiece. Musically innovative, melodically addictive, Fela got it all right in this politically scathing song in which he opposes Westernization and those who imitate Western ways. “I’m no be gentleman at all,” Fela sings, and then goes on to detail the ways in which he’s a “true African original” – and therefore superior to those who wear three-piece suits and hold tight to their colonial mentality. Fela follows this track with “Fefe Naa Efe,” which derives its name from an Ashanti proverb describing the beauty of a woman holding her breasts as she runs. Fela, who had many Ghanaian fans (and more than a few Ghanaian wives and girlfriends), sings this lush track as a tribute to Ghana. Finally, “Igbe” again shows the artist breaking cultural taboos by singing literally and figuratively about “shit”, as the word translates to, attaching the word to those friends who may betray you.

File Under: Afrobeat
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london

Fela Kuti: London Scene (Knitting Factory) LP
Fela Kuti’s rich discography stretches from the mid 1960s with Fela Ransome Kuti & His Highlife Rakers, to the early 1990s with Egypt 80, and there are masterpieces all along the way. But the 1970s, with Africa 70 and then Afrika 70, was the decade during which Fela’s Afrobeat went through its most dramatic changes – musically and politically. It begins with 1971’s Shakara and ends with 1980’s I.T.T. (International Thief Thief). It also includes London Scene (1972), Afrodisiac and Gentleman (both 1973) and Upside Down (1976). The penultimate selection is 1976’s Zombie, which was a huge hit in Nigeria. Fela’s London Scene, released in 1972, is a top-notch affair, made with a smaller band but one that punches above its weight. There is no tenor guitarist and no call-and-response choir, though sing-along vocals are a feature of “Egbe Mi O” (“please carry me”). Throughout, Fela’s electric piano is gymripped and razor sharp, and Igo Chico turns in three stirring tenor solos. “Buy Africa,” written in 1970, was one of Fela’s first politically-informed songs. The lyric was written in support of a government campaign to encourage local industry. “J’Ehin J’Ehin” (“eat teeth eat teeth”) is along similar lyric lines as “Shakara.” This time Fela is lampooning people who are so greedy that they eat their own teeth. In “Who’re You,” Fela channels James Brown’s vocal style over an angular funk groove. “Fight To Finish” draws on Yoruba folklore to offer advice: once you have started something, be prepared to finish it.

File Under: Afrobeat
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itt

Fela Kuti: I.T.T. (Knitting Factory) LP
Fela Kuti’s rich discography stretches from the mid 1960s with Fela Ransome Kuti & His Highlife Rakers, to the early 1990s with Egypt 80, and there are masterpieces all along the way. But the 1970s, with Africa 70 and then Afrika 70, was the decade during which Fela’s Afrobeat went through its most dramatic changes – musically and politically. It begins with 1971’s Shakara and ends with 1980’s I.T.T. (International Thief Thief). It also includes London Scene (1972), Afrodisiac and Gentleman (both 1973) and Upside Down (1976). The penultimate selection is 1976’s Zombie, which was a huge hit in Nigeria. At the time of its release, the name of this album (and the eponymous title track) would have been recognized by any Nigerian as the acronym for “International Telephone and Telegraph,” Nigeria’s biggest telecommunications conglomerate. In this track, however, Fela satirically used the acronym to mean “International Thief-Thief.” The song is a 24-minute direct attack on multinational’s CEO, Moshood Abiola, who also happened to own Decca, the label Fela was signed to at the time, and with whom Fela was in full battle mode based on the label’s refusal to release his albums. Fela takes this opportunity to publicly disgrace Abiola for, in Fela’s eyes, becoming a stooge for the white man through his general colonial mentality, and specifically for his collusion in the CIA-led effort to dislocate Chile’s democratically elected Marxist president Allende. The lyrics also include a pointed history lesson outlining the way, in the days of slavery, the white man would find a willing African who would sell his own people into slavery.

File Under: Afrobeat
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shakara

Fela Kuti: Shakara (Knitting Factory) LP
Fela Kuti’s rich discography stretches from the mid 1960s with Fela Ransome Kuti & His Highlife Rakers, to the early 1990s with Egypt 80, and there are masterpieces all along the way. But the 1970s, with Africa 70 and then Afrika 70, was the decade during which Fela’s Afrobeat went through its most dramatic changes – musically and politically. It begins with 1971’s Shakara and ends with 1980’s I.T.T. (International Thief Thief). It also includes London Scene (1972), Afrodisiac and Gentleman (both 1973) and Upside Down (1976). The penultimate selection is 1976’s Zombie, which was a huge hit in Nigeria. Shakara is one of a clutch of early-70s albums, on which Fela’s Afrobeat transitioned from foetal stage to something approaching full-grown form. Shakara is a two-track release of 13-minute songs that showcase Fela’s satirical side. “Lady,” perhaps one of Fela’s most popular tracks, criticizes westernized African women who he felt had been corrupted by their embrace of the new feminist movement of the time. And “Shakara” is another lyrically lambasting track that takes on braggarts and blowhards who boast false claims about their personal power and influence.

File Under: Afrobeat
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upside

Fela Kuti: Upside Down (Knitting Factory) LP
Fela Kuti’s rich discography stretches from the mid 1960s with Fela Ransome Kuti & His Highlife Rakers, to the early 1990s with Egypt 80, and there are masterpieces all along the way. But the 1970s, with Africa 70 and then Afrika 70, was the decade during which Fela’s Afrobeat went through its most dramatic changes – musically and politically. It begins with 1971’s Shakara and ends with 1980’s I.T.T. (International Thief Thief). It also includes London Scene (1972), Afrodisiac and Gentleman (both 1973) and Upside Down (1976). The penultimate selection is 1976’s Zombie, which was a huge hit in Nigeria. Upside Down and Zombie, both released in 1976, were made at the mid-point of an extraordinary three-year period during which Fela recorded 24 albums of new material. Upside Down – meaning back home in Africa everything is totally disorganized – is unusual in that it includes a second lead vocalist, Fela’s American friend Sandra Izsadore, who he’d known since touring the US in 1969. Izsadore, a black rights activist, introduced him to the writings of Malcolm X, Angela Davis, Rap Brown, Stokely Carmichael, Huey Newton and other revolutionary thinkers.”Go Slow” was one of several songs Fela recorded which critiqued the consequences of over-rapid urbanization – in this case, traffic jams – using them as a metaphor to describe deeper social breakdowns.

File Under: Afrobeat
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zombie

Fela Kuti: Zombie (Knitting Factory) LP
Fela Kuti’s rich discography stretches from the mid 1960s with Fela Ransome Kuti & His Highlife Rakers, to the early 1990s with Egypt 80, and there are masterpieces all along the way. But the 1970s, with Africa 70 and then Afrika 70, was the decade during which Fela’s Afrobeat went through its most dramatic changes – musically and politically. It begins with 1971’s Shakara and ends with 1980’s I.T.T. (International Thief Thief). It also includes London Scene (1972), Afrodisiac and Gentleman (both 1973) and Upside Down (1976). The penultimate selection is 1976’s Zombie, which was a huge hit in Nigeria. On the title track of 1976’s Zombie, Fela and the backup singers ridicule the mindset of men in uniform over an urgent, quick-march accompaniment from Afrika 70. “Attention! Quick march! Slow march! Salute!” sings Fela, “Fall in! Fall out! Fall down! Go and kill! Go and die! Go and quench!” Each phrase is followed by the women singers’ taunting response, “Zombie!” Fela paid a big price for this bold condemnation of the military institution. One thousand members of the Nigerian army attacked and burnt down his house after the release of the record. The tribunal set up to investigate the cause of the attack as a result of the public out-cry against the army, heard, as part of the evidence presented, an example of the Zombie album cover with the military uniform and boots displayed boldly. The army justification of the attack was that Fela treated the military institution with levity.

File Under: Afrobeat
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mandell

Harvey Mandel: Snake Pit (Tompkins Square) LP
Harvey Mandel is among the most innovative guitarists to emerge from the Chicago blues scene of the late 1960s. His career began at Twist City and other local hotspots, sharing stages with Muddy Waters, Howlin’ Wolf and Buddy Guy. He came up in that scene alongside Charlie Musselwhite, Mike Bloomfield, Barry Goldberg and Steve Miller, leading to an invitation from Bill Graham to open for Cream at San Francisco’s Fillmore Auditorium in August 1967. Mandel was a member of Canned Heat, appearing with them at Woodstock. He played on numerous John Mayall albums, and on the Rolling Stones’ 1975 LP Black and Blue (“Hot Stuff”, “Memory Motel”), having auditioned for Mick Taylor’s job, which ultimately went to Ron Wood. Known for his “tapping” technique and sinewy, sustain-driven phrasing (thus his nickname, “The Snake”), Mandel’s solo albums such as Cristo Redentor, Baby Batter and Righteous have been sampled and drooled over by guitar geeks, DJ’s, and fans of funky, soulful, otherworldly composition. Harvey’s fifteenth studio LP and his first widely distributed album in 20 years, Snake Pit was recorded in two days at Fantasy Studios in Berkeley, CA. Harvey teamed with fellow Chicago-based musicians Ben Boye (keys), Ryan Jewell (drums), Brian Sulpizio (guitar), and Anton Hatwich (bass), who have all played with singer/songwriter Ryley Walker, among their many other musical pursuits. Harvey and the band had not met previously, nor had they rehearsed. He played snippets of song ideas for the band on his iPhone, and then they would lay down a track in one or two takes. Hard to believe when you hear the album, but that’s exactly how it went down. Minimal overdubs with strings and percussion were added, but mostly what you hear is what happened spontaneously in the studio. The album contains six new original compositions by Mandel and two revisited songs : “Baby Batter” from his 1971 Janus LP of the same name, and “Before Six” by Larry Frazier, which appears on his first album, Cristo Redentor. Snake Pit marks a spirited return in a career that now spans six decades — all the more intense and poignant given Harvey’s recent battle with cancer.

File Under: Blues, Rock
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marsBruno Mars: 24k Magic (Warner) LP
Multi-Grammy-winning megastar Bruno Mars returns with his highly-anticipated third studio album, 24K Magic, his first piece of solo music in nearly four years. Written and produced by Shampoo Press & Curl, lead single “24K Magic” sees Bruno bringing back his signature bounce with the singer proclaiming, “You can call it my first single, but I call it the invitation to the party.” The critically acclaimed singer, songwriter, producer, and musician scored his first five “Hot 100” No. 1’s faster than any male since Elvis Presley. Mars most recently dominated the charts with hit single “Uptown Funk.” The worldwide smash is the longest-leading Billboard Hot 100 single of the 2010s, and is only the tenth single in the Hot 100’s 57-year history to spend at least 14 weeks at No. 1. “Uptown Funk” took home 3 Grammy Awards this past year, including the coveted Record of the Year award.

File Under: Pop, Soul
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montgomery

Roy Montgomery: R: Tropic of Anodyne
Roy Montgomery: M: Darkmotif Dancehall
Roy Montgomery: H: Bender
Roy Montgomery: Q: Transient Global
(Grapefruit) LP
It’s been over a decade since Roy Montgomery’s last album, and R M H Q is a hell of a return. H: Bender harkens back to his nineties work, where guitar riffs ensconced themselves in dynamism. Montgomery’s trademark reverb-laden guitar offers a fluidity like pulsing blood, coloring in each motif’s corners and rewarding every deeper listen with heightened profundity. Montgomery was in his rock band period in the eighties, when the dark, minimalist post-punk of The Pin Group lead into the gloriously open-ended freedoms of Dadamah. After a quiet spell, he returned in the late nineties, producing towering spires of guitar lines that exposed fragility between the strums. With his solo releases and in collaboration with Flying Saucer Attack, Bardo Pond (Hash Jar Tempo), and Chris Heaphy (Dissolve), his focus shifted from the truth-mining of rock music to epic celestialism. His ambitious yet humble tracks outstrip their origins, and Montgomery toured the world sitting cross-legged on the floor, playing twenty-plus-minute compositions. A long period of silence followed, marked only with a split album with Grouper (who lists Montgomery as a primary influence), involvement in Torlesse Super Group, and a couple thematic variations serving as soundtracks for films. Instead, he focused on his personal and professional commitments. Unfortunately, two horrific events preceded his return: the Christchurch earthquakes of 2011 condemned Montgomery’s entire neighborhood save for his home, stripping his street of a community; and, as a volunteer firefighter, he saw first-hand the destruction and loss of life in the city center. Additionally, since 2014, illness in the family has dominated his life. Self-expression once again demanded an outlet. R M H Q is four albums conceived and recorded over a very short period, each of them carrying a distinct focus and mood.

File Under: Rock, Experimental
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moon-pool

Moon Pool & Dead Band: Humanizer (Midwich) LP
The duo of Nate young (Wolf Eyes, Regression) & David Shettler (Viands, SSM) return with their highly-anticipated full-length follow-up to MEQ 2LP remixes, released by Midwich in 2015. Humanizer is sonically diverse featuring varied modes of production throughout. Humanizer jettisons with their live staple ‘New British Blues,’ the 10-minute track recalling Shettler’s long-form work in Viands, putting synthesizers in space, as live drums invigorate the track with an earthbound brashness. ‘Cycloid’ is the album’s most concise, bracing and dare-we-say catchy number–a real ear-worm. ‘Sea Dust’ is a blasting electronic collage also featuring live drums (we think). The title track ‘Humanizer’ is classic MOON POOL, creepy and menacing with an off-kilter bass thump. ‘A Gray Glow’ continues in classic mode with thumping bass and queasy synths. ‘Hospital Quiet’ features pleasing, sunward-facing ambience to reassure listeners that all is good. MOON POOL AND DEAD BAND have been a Detroit cult techno favorite since Shettler and Young joined forces in 2011. Uninitiated listeners are caught off-guard by the funkiness of the group, shaking assumptions about the group’s perceived roots. We’ve all heard bad noise-techno records–this isn’t one of them. The danceable style is one that grows organically from the duo’s life experience. Moon Pool and Dead Band approach the music with respect, knowledge and humor. Humanizer is a party-starter that could have only come from Detroit.

File Under: Electronic, Techno, Wolf Eyes
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morning-dew

The Morning Dew: s/t (Lion) LP
Morning Dew have been psych collector faves for ages. Their sole release, “At Last” (much like the Morgan album) becomes more obviously crucial with each passing year. After recording their legendary album for Roulette in 1969, Morning Dew headed back to Topeka feeling good about their prospects. But Roulette had problems. They did finally release “At Last” late in 1970… and marketed it so well it became a psychedelic rarity and a cult favorite. Even so, Morning Dew’s producer at Roulette urged the band to record a demo of songs for a second album. They went to a local studio in August 1970 and blasted out eight songs, bolstered by new recruit Ferdy Baumgart’s Hammond B3. Band leader Mal Robinson also made acoustic two-track recordings in his basement: new songs, plus others from the Morning Dew repertoire—just vocal and guitar. The band gigged while Roulette and it’s honcho Morris Levy withered under scrutiny by law enforcement. A second album came to nothing. Still under contract with Roulette and still dealing with broken promises, burnt out and broke, Morning Dew disbanded in June, 1971. But those demos… they need to be heard. That’s where we come in. Two records, chock full of your new favorite Morning Dew songs, plus solo acoustic versions of band classics like the monumental ’Crusader’s Smile,’ alternates, and more, most of which is previously unreleased. One more thing: all of this material is making its vinyl debut.

File Under: Psych
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root

MV & EE: Root/Void (Woodsist) LP
“MV & EE take their homespun hypnotics and cosmic country sounds to new levels on Root / Void. I love this album— it trips hard and hauntingly—a gift for languid golden afternoons or late night moonlight powwows. Anthem-worthy tape edits on some cuts crack open surreal and cinematic vistas. While joined by fellow travelers here and there, this album remains in essence a fecund duet from two entwined souls, updating and re-defining their unique pool of sound. Intrepid audio bathers: get thee immersed!” —Lee Ranaldo, Italy, July 2016

File Under: Psych, Blues

oddentrance

Oh Sees: An Odd Entrance (Castle Face) LP
From the same misty mountaintop tape spool as August’s A Weird Exits, Thee Oh Sees bring the companion album An Odd Entrances. Delving more towards the contemplative than the face-skinning aspects of its predecessor, this sister album is a cosmic exercise en plein aire with John Dwyer and company double-drum shuffling, lounging with cellos, following a flute around the groove, and spooling a few Grimm-dark lullabies along the way. Lurking in the grass are a snake or two, like the celestial facing instrumental buzz of “Unwrap The Fiend Pt. 1.”… But for the most part this is a relatively hushed affair, a morning rather than evening listen. The band plans on donating half their profits from the first pressing to Elizabeth House, a local charity in Pasadena that specifically helps homeless women with children get back on their feet.

File Under: Punk, Garage
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golden-axe

OST: Golden Axe 1 & 2 (Data Discs) LP
For Data Discs’ seventh release in partnership with SEGA of Japan, they are delighted to bring together the complete music from the classic Mega Drive games, Golden Axe (1989) and Golden Axe II (1991), in one special package. This release features the unforgettable artwork from both games, supplied on two thick lithographic prints, with the record itself pressed on heavyweight translucent gold or classic black vinyl. The outer sleeve features rare artwork from the 1989 Japanese edition, sourced from the SEGA archives and presented on 425gsm cardstock with gold flood printing. As always, the audio has been carefully restored and mastered using the original console as the source, ensuring these memorable soundtracks are preserved for many quests to come!

File Under: OST, Videogames

losthighway

OST: The Lost Highway (Music on Vinyl) LP
Lost Highway is the 1997 French-American neo-noir-horror mystery film written and directed by David Lynch. It stars Bill Pullman as a man convicted of murdering his wife (Patricia Arquette), after which he inexplicably morphs into a young mechanic and begins a new life. The film’s score was composed by Angelo Badalamenti, with additional music by Barry Adamson, however Trent Reznor from Nine Inch Nails was responsible for assembling the soundtrack. David Bowie’s “I’m Deranged”, Rammstein’s “Heirate Mich”, Lou Reed’s “This Magic Moment”, Marilyn Manson’s “Apple Of Sodom” plus more tracks from Trent Reznor, The Smashing Pumpkins all appear on the double album to accompany the Angelo Badalamenti and Barry Adamson theme music. Lost Highway premiered in 1997 in the United States on a limited theatrical release and has developed a cult following. Director David Lynch received three Academy Awards nominations, a Golden Lion award from the Venice Film Festival for lifetime achievements as well as a Palme d’Or at the Cannes Film Festival for Wild At Heart in 1990.

File Under: OST

maniac

OST: Maniac (Death Waltz) LP
Death Waltz Recording Co. is proud to present a re-issue of Jay Chattaway’s soundtrack to the 1980 classic Maniac. An absolutely phenomenal, sleazy synth score from Jay Chattaway, perfectly capturing the unease and grime of Times Square in its pre-Disney clean up era. Its minimal synth lines, full to the brim with dark brooding menace, exaggerated ring modulations and discordant strings manage to echo the utter despare of Joe Spinell’s character on screen. This stands head and shoulders above similar 80’s synth scores which often riffed on John Carpenter’s Halloween score a little too much. Maniac sees Chattaway going wild, adding layers of noise & dialogue into the mix, giving the score an utterly claustrophobic feel that manages to be both terrifying and exhilarating at the same time. This is a genuinely uncomfortable listen and it is easy to see why it has become such a classic amongst synth-heads and horror fans alike.

File Under: OST
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twin-peaks

OST: Twin Peaks (Death Waltz) LP
Twin Peaks – Original Score LP. Music by Angelo Badalamenti. Artwork by Sam Smith, full package design by Jay Shaw. Pressed on 180 Gram vinyl. One of the greatest scores ever recorded is finally back in print for the first time in 25 years! Death Waltz went back to the Warner archives, where engineer Tal Miller cut brand new vinyl masters. They then worked with Dave Cheppa at Plush Vinyl to cut new lacquers. Finally they asked Rainbo to press the record on 180g vinyl for the best possible sound quality. The record comes housed inside a 425gsm gatefold sleeve featuring lyrics and liner notes by composer Angelo Badalamenti; the cover image by Sam Smith comes approved by David Lynch himself! The gatefold sleeve is then housed within a bespoke die cut outer jacket designed by Jay Shaw featuring super subtle white spot varnish text. The whole affair is finished with a top loading obi strip. “I’m glad that after 25 years, Death Waltz Recording Company has re-released the original soundtrack for Twin Peaks for a new audience to enjoy. This is my defining work as a composer and I’m happy it will get a fresh listen” – Angelo Badalamenti, 2016

File Under: OST
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rachels

Rachels: Systems/Layers (Quarterstick) LP
Louisville-based avant-garde chamber group Rachel’s present the vinyl debut of their 2003 full-length album Systems/Layers. This double LP album release also includes the vinyl debut of Rachel’s 2005 EP, Technology Is Killing Music. Numerous recording sessions make up systems/layers, home recordings, field recordings, and several large ensemble sessions with members of the Louisville Orchestra. Preliminary work for Systems/Layers began in 1997, when Rachel’s took to the streets of NYC armed with a DAT recorded in search of interesting sounds. This project, intended to address the issues of modern urban life, was set aside while other projects kept the band’s attention. However, when Rachel’s started working with the innovative New York based SITI theatre group in 2000, these recordings were given an environment to be completed. Included on the last side of this 2LP release, Technology Is Killing Music is an ideal companion to Systems/Layers. Assembled in the same cut up style, this 20-minute EP is a long-form suite comprised of material sourced from studio sessions, live performances and field recordings.

File Under: Chamber, Neo-Classical
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ratelife

Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats: A Little Something More From (Stax) LP
Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats’ new 8-track EP, A Little Something More From, serves as a companion to the band’s critically acclaimed 2015 self-titled debut. The release features new studio recordings of live favorites including “Parlor,” “Out On The Weekend,” and “I Did It,” original album B-sides including the soulful ballad “What I Need,” “How To Make Friends” and a live version of “Wasting Time” recorded at the Stax Museum of American Soul Music in Memphis, TN. This collection follows what has been a phenomenal 18 months for Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats. The band, along with their loyal hometown fans, just celebrated the one-year anniversary of their debut album with a sold-out headlining show at Denver’s renowned Red Rocks Amphitheatre. The breakthrough year has also included a number of important milestones – their hit single “S.O.B.” blasted the nation’s airwaves for months as did follow-up tracks “I Need Never Get Old” and “Look It Here.” Their latest single, “Wasting Time,” is finding similar success as well. Additionally, their eponymous debut has now sold over 650,000 copies worldwide.

File Under: Funk Soul
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sparks

Sparks: s/t (1972) LP
Sparks’ eponymous 1971 debut presents the singular compositional, lyrical and singing voices of Ron and Russell Mael fully formed. Originally released under the moniker Halfnelson, Sparks’ prescient debut prefigures Queen, power pop, and especially Southern California’s late ’70s skinny-tie explosion. It’s a landmark of Todd Rungren’s early production career, and clearly the backing band of brothers Earle and Jim Mankey brought Sparks’ pop idiosyncrasies to their later work with The Dickies, The Quick and 20 / 20. Infectious, daring, and delightfully flaunting camp theatricality throughout, Sparks is the first installment in an unparalleled series of some of the decade’s most classic albums. Careening melodies soar through space-detritus electronics on the strikingly original “Roger,” which evokes the early solo work of Brian Eno, but the deranged art-rock closing track “(No More) Mr. Nice Guys” is the unequivocal classic of Sparks’ early career and a staple of the band’s live set ever since. Rundgren’s restrained production wisely sets the Mael brothers at the fore of Sparks. With just subtly treated cymbal flourishes keeping the pace, album opener “Wonder Girl” is pared down and mixed to showcase two things: Ron’s twinkling piano trill and Russell’s fluttering high-register. As Rundgren perceived, and a multi-decade career confirms since, their fraternal chemistry is a consummate force.

File Under: Art Rock, Pop
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telefon

Telefon Tel Aviv: Fahrenheit Fair Enough (Ghostly) LP
The late 1990s was a fertile time in the American electronic underground. A growing body of artists, spread around the nation, were engaging in the latest round of a decades-long transatlantic musical conversation. At the convergence of hip-hop, electronic, and soul music, these artists sought to carve out their own lane. In September 2001, New Orleans’ Telefon Tel Aviv, high school friends Joshua Eustis and the late Charles Cooper, joined the conversation with their debut album, Fahrenheit Fair Enough, released by Hefty Records. A labor of love, Fahrenheit… was an attempt by the pair “to contribute something meaningful” Eustis says today, “something definitely American, and kinda southern too.” On the 15th anniversary of its release, Ghostly International is reissuing Fahrenheit Fair Enough on double vinyl with an accompanying download featuring bonus material. Living in New Orleans in the late 1990s, Eustis and Cooper were in the thrall of two musical orbits: black America – New Orleans’ bounce, Detroit’s techno, Chicago’s house – and British electronica – Autechre, Aphex Twin, Jega. Recorded over the course of a year in Eustis’ childhood bedroom in the Riverbend neighborhood of New Orleans, Fahrenheit… mapped out a potential for American electronic music in a time of hope. The music features delicate Rhodes and guitar instrumentation wrapped in a southern bounce shell, smothered in R&B, and cut up by digital rhythm programming. The tracks were meant to be “constantly, evolving sculptures.” Fascinated by IDM, the pair sought to inject “some swagger into it, loosen it up a little but also make it hyper romantic.” Eustis and Cooper had imagined making a “hard club record,” but instead Fahrenheit… came to be seen as a delicate slice of electronica by fans and critics who misconstrued its stylistics roots. This was, perhaps, hardly surprising. Telefon Tel Aviv arrived at a time when there was no roadmap for an American electronic music scene comparable to what the UK had produced in the ’90s. They were the latest artists to find themselves in a strange middle ground between hip-hop and electronic music that had yet to be understood. The music sounds all the more relevant in 2016 because the roadmap Eustis and Cooper desired then exists today. And because today everyone listens to what the South has to say.

File Under: Electronic, Ambient, IDM
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blurry-live

Twenty One Pilots: Blurryface Live (Fueled By Ramen) 3LP
Twenty One Pilots landed at the top of the Billboard Charts in 2015 with their triumphant sophomore studio album Blurryface and its hit singles “Fairly Local,” “Tear My Heart Out” and “Stressed Out.” The record took the band’s explosive mix of hip-hop, indie rock and punk to the next level, with soaring pop melodies and eclectic sonic landscapes. Billboard stated that Blurryface, “…serves as evidence that one of pop’s most daring duos isn’t about to slow down,” while Alternative Press proclaimed that Twenty One Pilots, “ramped up everything, from new influences to the number of producers (four) to the metric ton of uncertainties and fears multiplying in frontman/songwriter Tyler Joseph’s cranium. And it’s wonderful.” Blurryface: Live is an awesome new document of the songs from the album performed in concert at The Fox Theater in Oakland, CA, presented on stunning tri-gatefold triple picture disc vinyl adorned with stylized shots of the band.

File Under: Rock, Pop

tyvek

Tyvek: Origin of What (In The Red) LP
Tyvek have long stood as one of the more steadfast and dependable punk institutions of the last decade. Each record has been great and has improved on the one before it without struggling to reinvent or overwrite their past. Line-ups and life events shift but the energy always comes through as new and raw as it did on the first single. Origin of What, their fourth album, is something of a departure, if a cryptic one—all the familiar elements are in place and yet a pervasive darkness that these strangely disjointed songs. Working again with Fred Thomas who recorded their most recent album, 2012 burner On Triple Beams, band members from the earliest incarnations to its most recent showed up for various recording sessions, with initial tracks captured quickly. Later, far more extensive editing, mixing and overdubbing ensued, resulting in a fragmented production style that slowly disintegrates the standard punk fare until it starts to resemble dub experimentation before decaying even further. Tyvek’s future, like its origin, is up for grabs.

File Under: Punk
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ween

Ween: Godweensatan Live (ATO) LP
Uncertain whether or not to cancel their re-release party for GodWeenSatan: The Oneness on Sept. 14, 2001, just days after the tragic events of 9/11, Ween took the stage at their local bar, John & Peter’s, in New Hope, PA. What unfolded was pure catharsis for both the band and the packed crowd. Ween ran through the album in its entirety and captured the show on 24-track tape. This release, the band’s first since 2008, is that never-before-heard recording. GodWeenSatan: Live was mixed from the multitrack recording and mastered by Tom Ruff. This 2LP set is pressed onto 180g colored vinyl and includes a free MP3 download of the album.

File Under: Rock

wiltzie

Adam Bryanbaum Wiltzie: Salero (Erased Tapes) LP
Adam Bryanbaum Wiltzie, the creative force behind A Winged Victory For The Sullen and Stars Of The Lid, presents his score for the motion picture Salero on vinyl courtesy of Erased Tapes. With Salero Wiltzie weaves some of his finest work to date and delivers an expertly distilled accompaniment to director Mike Plunkett’s sprawling, uncompromising visuals. Set in Bolivia’s Salar de Uyuni, the world’s largest salt flat, the narrative follows the region’s Saleros – those who have for generations gathered salt and earned enough to somehow carve out an existence in such a barren landscape. It’s with the discovery of huge Lithium reserves – a mineral used frequently throughout the tech industry – under the scorched earth that acts as a catalyst for exploitation of the environment and its people; holding a microscope to the drastic effect industrialization has on local culture and tradition. “I have always said that composing music is infinitely easier when you have beautiful images to be inspired by,” Wiltzie explains. “It was a pleasure to write a score over this captivating place of endless, glimmering salt before its impending demise. I was fascinated by this mythical space and its ability to define the identities of the people who live in its vicinity, where this vast salt flat itself would be a central character.”

File Under: OST, Ambient, Stars of the Lid
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womack

Bobby Womack: Fly Me to the Moon (Premium Cool) LP
1968’s Fly Me To The Moon was Boby Womack’s first solo long-player, after a decade of forging a singular path as R&B morphed into soul music, first with the Sam Cooke-sponsored VALENTINOS, and subsequently as a songwriter and guitarist for the likes of Wilson Pickett. Indeed, the album features Womack’s version of Pickett’s ‘Midnight Mover,’ along with very groovy interpretations of ‘California Dreamin” (a small hit at the time),’ ‘Moonlight In Vermont,’ and the title cut. But it is the singers own superlative material—’What Is This,’ ‘Somebody Special,’ ‘Take Me’—that shines best on this fantastic debut, produced by the estimable CHIPS MOMAN at his American Studios facility in Memphis, utilizing one of the finest session crews in southern soul.

File Under: R&B, Soul
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womack1

Bobby Womack: My Prescription (Premium Cool) LP
Bobby Womack returned to American in 1969 to cut My Prescription, also produced by Chips Moman, at a time that the venue was becoming exceptionally hot with visits from the likes of Elvis, Dusty Springfield, Neil Diamond and others. Womack’s sophomore album may however well be one of the most demonstrative showcases of studio and session crew, incandescent on a finely-honed program of classy and soulful performances, with the singer in full control. Tracks like ‘How I Miss You Baby,’ ‘Arkansas State Prison’ and ‘I Can’t Take It Like A Man’ stand as some of Womack’s greatest moments, and taken as a whole, My Prescription stands not only the man’s first truly great solo album, but also a timeless slice of sophisticated southern soul-making.

File Under: R&B, Soul
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live-womack

Bobby Womack: The Womack ‘Live’ (Premium Cool) LP
In 1970 Bobby Womack and manager Ed Wright decided to capitalize on his new-found solo visibility by capturing an in-person performance at a Los Angeles nightclub. The Womack “Live” was the result, a compelling, cathartic session where, as the original liner notes attest, Womack “held church,” agonizing, pleading, exhorting and testifying to a crowd fully in rapture to him. As well as extended jams on album material like ‘How I Miss You Baby,’ the playlist featured killer versions of ‘Something’ and ‘Everybody’s Talkin” and some outrageous stage patter. All in all, it’s an incredible recital capturing Bobby Womack in his prime, and even comes with an uncredited appearance from Percy Mayfield.

File Under: R&B, Soul

young

Neil Young: Official Release Series 8.5-12 (Reprise) 5LP Box
Neil Young’s “Official Release Series” continues with the Discs 8.5-12 limited edition 180g 6LP box set, the next collection of chronological titles which includes: 1976’s Long May You Run (The Stills-Young Band); 1977’s American Stars ‘N Bars; 1978’s Comes A Time; 1979’s Rust Never Sleeps (Neil Young & Crazy Horse); and 1979’s Live Rust (Neil Young & Crazy Horse). Discs 8.5-12 checks in after 1975’s Zuma and follows Discs 1-4 which were issued in 2009 and Discs 5-8 which were issued in 2014. Long May You Run served as the lone release from the short lived Stills-Young Band, featuring Neil and his old Buffalo Springfield cohort Stephen Stills splitting the songwriting duties with backing from Stills’ polished session musician fitted band. Roots rock affair American Stars ‘N Bars offers a mixed bag of the many styles Young had explored on previous efforts. There’s beautiful country-rock material (“The Old Country Waltz,” “Star of Bethlehem”), introspective acoustic solo numbers (“Will to Love”), and extended ragers (“Like a Hurricane”) plus guest appearances by Linda Ronstadt, Emmylou Harris, Nicolette Larson and Crazy Horse. Comes A Time finds Young largely returning to his lush acoustic-based Harvest sound with uplifting harmony vocals from Nicolette Larson. Tender and inspired in all the right places, it became his first Top Ten album in over half a decade. Rust Never Sleeps features new material recorded live during Young’s 1978 tour with Crazy Horse and it’s split into compelling acoustic material and powerful electric numbers. The set kicks things off with the state of rock ‘n’ roll anthem “My My, Hey Hey (Out of the Blue),” before offering up a lovely “Pocahontas,” scathing epic “Powderfinger” and closing with a rowdy reprise of “Hey Hey, My My (Into the Black).” 1978 concert recording Live Rust featuring an on fire Crazy Horse on select tracks – issued months after its spiritual guide Rust Never Sleeps – was captured at the Cow Palace in San Francisco, CA and finds Young wearing his folksinger and bandleader hats and mixing early classics and then newer material in what adds up to be one hell of a show.

File Under: Rock

bobo

Various: Bobo YeYe: Belle Epoque in Upper Volta (Numero) Box
From his studio in central Bobo-Dioulasso, photographer Sory Sanlé documented a nation’s transformation from colonial foothold to cosmopolitan oasis. Bobo Yeye: Belle Epoque in Upper Volta provides an intimate look into the landlocked nation’s pop culture explosion of the 1970s. A melange of community elders and emboldened youth spill from the brightly lit confines of Sanlé’s Volta Photo into the dimly lit nightclubs of Upper Volta’s cultural capital. Accompanying this hardbound monograph are dozens of rare and evocative recordings spread over three discs by Bobo-Dioulasso’s musical titans: Volta Jazz, Dafra Star, Echo Del Africa, and Les Imbattables Léopards.

File Under: African, Latin, Jazz, Funk, R&B
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allnight

Various: All Night Long: Northern Soul Floor Fillers (J&D Records) LP
Whilst not the first UK dance scene – the mods had that covered – northern soul is the longest running. Those northern clubbers who eschewed late 60s psychedelic fripperies for obscure old soul records with the requisite beat, couldn’t have known what they started. After using up all the UK released sides they began digging in the United States and after nearly 50 years the northern soul scene has probably unearthed more great music than any other. All Night Long is our tribute to those pioneers and includes current in-demanders such as The Sensations ‘Demanding Man’, classics by The Chandlers and Ernest Mosley and a host of other dancefloor friendly masterpieces. On the 14th October 2016 J&D Records release three exceptional compilations that look at vintage African-American music through the prism of UK club culture. All Night Long, Can You Feel That Beat and Extra Added Soul will be available on CD & double vinyl and are compiled by DJ and award winning compiler Dean Rudland, with stunning artwork from his long-time collaborators The Unknown. Across the three volumes there are 60 tracks of soul, funk and boogie.

File Under: Northern Soul
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canyou

Various: Can You Feel that Beat: Funk 45s & Other Rare Grooves (J&D Records) LP
Funk was the syncopated groove that emerged in the mid-sixties through hits from James Brown and Dyke and The Blazers. It was a natural development out of rhythm and blues. Thousands of local bands tried to emulate Brown’s success, and in the process created a plethora of rare and sought after 45s and album cuts that have been mined by DJs and producers to fill floors or provide breakbeats. Whilst the 20 tracks on this compilation would cost you thousands of pounds to own on their original issue, that isn’t really the point. Instead you get to listen to magnificent grooves such as Mickey & The Soul Generations explosive ‘Iron Leg’, Andrew Brown’s blues tinged ‘You Made Me Suffer’ or the message music of 24 Carat Black. On the 14th October 2016 J&D Records release three exceptional compilations that look at vintage African-American music through the prism of UK club culture. All Night Long, Can You Feel That Beat and Extra Added Soul will be available on CD & double vinyl and are compiled by DJ and award winning compiler Dean Rudland, with stunning artwork from his long-time collaborators The Unknown. Across the three volumes there are 60 tracks of soul, funk and boogie.

File Under: Funk, Soul
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extra

Various: Extra Added Soul: Crossover, Modern & Funky Soul (J&D Records) LP
There is a lot of confusion with regards to the modern soul scene. An off-shoot of northern soul, it initially mixed new release independent soul, with post late-60s soul that didn’t fit with the northern scene. They championed a lot of great records, but this was the mid-80s and it now seems odd to describe nearly 50 year old records as modern soul – but somehow the name has stuck. Extra Added Soul luxuriates in this contradiction, as it allows us to mix up the boogie like ‘Love Explosion’ by Donnell Pittman, with two-step Chicago classics by Elvin Bishop or El Anthony, or the danceable sweet soul of Dyson’s Faces with Gil Scott-Heron alike ‘Patience’ by Rokk. Amongst the twenty tracks there is also room for a touch of Prince on 94 East’s exceptional ‘If You See Me’ and the cosmic soul of Karriem’s super rarity ‘I Love You’. On the 14th October 2016 J&D Records release three exceptional compilations that look at vintage African-American music through the prism of UK club culture. All Night Long, Can You Feel That Beat and Extra Added Soul will be available on CD & double vinyl and are compiled by DJ and award winning compiler Dean Rudland, with stunning artwork from his long-time collaborators The Unknown. Across the three volumes there are 60 tracks of soul, funk and boogie.

File Under: Funk, Soul
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laggniappe

Various: Lagniappe Session 1 (Light in the Attic) LP
Founded in Los Angeles, CA by Georgia transplant Justin Gage, the Aquarium Drunkard blog has long served as a haven for discerning and adventurous listeners since 2005. Digging globally, AD offers an eclectic array of features, interviews, mixtapes, and reviews spanning vintage garage, psych, folk, country, soul, funk, R&B and beyond. The scope is wide, but the motto is simple: Only the good shit. Pardon the blue language, but it tracks. Release dates and hype aren’t driving forces at AD; the material featured on the site is there because Gage and the staff dig what they’re writing about. In 2011, Gage launched the Lagniappe Sessions, a regular recording series on the website and the weekly Aquarium Drunkard Show on Sirius/XMU featuring freeform selections, songs culled from artist’s record collections and inspirations. This co-release between Light In The Attic Records and Aquarium Drunkard Recordings documents the first five years of the series, collecting on vinyl for the first time a diverse lineup of obscure gems and familiar tunes refashioned into surprising and unexpected things. Psychedelic Swedes Dungen cover electronic pioneer Aphex Twin; of Montreal tap into the classic folk ballad “All My Sorrows”; troubadour Kevin Morby configures the blistering hardcore of the Germs into something more mystical. Some of the most familiar songs on Vol. 1 are the farthest out in terms of reinterpretation — White Fence reimagines the Gin Blossoms as a Paisley Underground outfit; guitarist William Tyler draws lines connecting the ragas of Sandy Bull to the progressive rock of Blue Oyster Cult. “Songs like this play on long after the record is done and become more like truths to me,” songwriter Jennifer Castle wrote for AD regarding her cover of Bob Dylan’s “Walkin’ Down the Line”. The songs of Lagniappe Sessions Vol. 1 share that quality equally.

File Under: Indie Rock

…..Restocks…..

Alabama Shakes: Boys & Girls (ATO) LP
Alabama Shakes: Sound & Color (ATO) LP
Tori Amos: Boys For Pele (Warner) LP
Arcade Fire: Reflektor (Sonovox) LP
Black Sabbath: Vol 4 (Rhino) LP
Boards of Canada: Music Has the Right to Children (Warp) LP
Boards of Canada: Geogaddi (Warp) LP
David Bowie: Hunky Dory (RCA) LP
David Bowie: Ziggy Stardust (RCA) LP
Danny Brown: Atrocity Exhibition (Warp) LP
Can: Future Days (Spoon) LP
Cat Power: You Are Free (Matador) LP
Nick Cave: Abattoir Blues (Mute) LP
Nick Cave: Murder Ballads (Mute) LP
City & Colour: Sometimes (Dine Alone) LP
Daft Punk: Homework (EMI) LP
Daft Punk: Random Access Memories (Columbia) LP
Drive By Truckers: American Band (ATO) LP
Flaming Lips: Soft Bulletin (Warner) LP
Flaming Lips: Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots (Warner) LP
Flying Lotus: Cosmogramma (Warp) LP
Flying Lotus: Los Angeles (Warp) LP
Flying Lotus: You’re Dead (Warp) LP
Fucked Up: Chemistry of Common Life (Matador) LP
Marvin Gaye: What’s Going On (Universal) LP
Marvin Gaye: Let’s Get It On (Universal) LP
Godspeed You! Black Emperor: Asunder… (Constellation) LP
Jamie XX: In Color (Young Turk) LP
Sharon Jones: 100 Days, 100 Nights (Daptone) LP
Sharon Jones: Soul Time! (Daptone) LP
Lemon Twigs: Do Hollywood (4AD) LP
Tim Maia: Nobody Can Live Forever (Luaka Bop) LP
The National: High Violet (4AD) LP
Radiohead: A Moon Shaped Pool (XL) LP
Radiohead: A Moon Shaped Pool (XL) DLX LP
Rural Alberta Advantage: Hometowns (Paperbag) LP
Schoolboy Q: Blank Face (Universal) LP
Stone Roses: Sally Cinnamon (Universal) LP
Stooges: s/t (Rhino) LP
Taylor Swift: 1989 (Universal) LP
Talk Talk: Laughing Stock (Universal) LP
Cecil Taylor: Conquistador (Blue Note) LP

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…..news letter #750 – bags…..

Once again, not a huge list this week. This will likely be a running theme for the next few weeks, as it is every summer. But all that 90s stuff is priced and available now. And, I just bought a bunch of 80s hard rock/metal. More mainstream than last summer’s metal haul, but still some cool stuff to look for in the bins soon.

…..pick of the week…..

mtumeMtume Umoja Ensemble: Alkebu-Lan – Land of the Blacks
(Live at the East) (Strata-East) 2LP

180-gram exact repro reissue, originally released in 1972. Hyper-afro spiritual jazz teetering between avant-garde inventiveness and free jazz madness. “This album is a mean motherfucker. It’s an amazing document of the pure fire of Black Nationalist Free-Jazz. I discovered it during a period when I was picking at the outer reaches of Leroy Jenkins’ discography (he’s a member of this ensemble). At the time I had exhausted his output as a band leader and as a member of the Revolutionary Ensemble and was desperate to hear more. It begins with an Afro-Spiritual/Political monologue. Even before the music started, I knew I was onto a good thing. When its first notes cried out, I nearly fell out of my chair. It’s astounding. I spent years desperately trying to track down a copy. It doesn’t turn up often and when it does, it’s rarely cheap. I waited it out and got lucky. The ensemble is lead by James Mtume, a percussionist who during this period was playing regularly with with Miles Davis, Buddy Terry, Sonny Rollins, Pharoah Sanders and others. He released two albums as a leader. Both are great representations of 1970’s New York Free-Jazz, and among the best displaying the possibilities of larger ensembles. Alkebu-Lan – Land Of The Blacks was recorded at The East, a radical venue in the Clinton Hill Neighborhood of Brooklyn, remembered for the Pharoah Sanders album bearing its name, and notable for not allowing White people to pass its doors. Mtume left the world of Jazz in the late 70’s and went on to have a fairly successful career as a Modern Soul and Disco artist. This phase in his career didn’t produce many things I like, and is probably most noted for the track Juicy Fruit, which was famously sampled by Notorious B.I.G. Of all the albums I’ve chosen for this list, Alkebu-Lan stands slightly at odds. Most of the artists featured here, like Mingus, use complex orchestration to capture the depth of their anger and emotion. To achieve this, they exacted remarkable control over the emotional realization of their music. Alkebu-Lan is the other end of the spectrum. It is a howling storm set forth on the world. There isn’t an ounce of restraint on its four sides. It makes the emotional onslaught of Punk and Hardcore sound like a childish temper tantrum. Despite all that it unleashes, somehow its sound still returns me to Mingus. It’s not only the scale of the ensemble, but how the musicians play off each other. The album embraces the rising tide of the whole rather than the brittle interplay of single musicians. The dissonances they create despite their energy and emotion feel considered and composed. It’s a rare and wonderful thing. If you spend the time it takes to hunt it down, you won’t be disappointed.” The Hum

File Under: Free Jazz
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…..new arrivals…..

aphex

Aphex Twin: Cheetah (Warp) LP
In tomorrow…. The new Aphex Twin Cheetah EP uses digital sound generation techniques combined with wave sequencing technology to bring you sounds with movement and depth rarely found on records today. To assure you that your Cheetah EP will give you many years of enjoyment, please be sure to read the owners manual carefully before attempting to operate. All forms of the EP come encased in high gloss packaging with silver foil detailing to ensure a high quality product experience.

File Under: Electronic
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avalanches

Avalanches: Wildflower (Astralwerks) LP
In tomorrow... Sixteen years after the release of their critically acclaimed, award winning debut Since I Left You, The Avalanches return with their second album, Wildflower. Astralwerks is thrilled to be releasing the long-awaited album from the influential and genre-defying Australian band stating, “It is an absolute honor to be working with The Avalanches on their return. They made an incredible impact with their first album and fans all over the world have been waiting for this. The wait is over.”  Created by the band’s core duo – Robbie Chater and Tony Di Blasi – Wildflower is like The Beach Boys’ Smile re-imagined in the Daisy Age: a mind-bending cartoon road movie that’s best viewed with closed eyes and an open mind. The first single, “Frankie Sinatra,” draws from a variety of eras, cultures and genres, and exemplifies the rich tapestry of samples and sonics that is distinctly The Avalanches. An infectious, old world, carnival-inspired rollercoaster of a song, “Frankie Sinatra” features Danny Brown and MF Doom on vocals and masterfully weaves in 20th century works by influential calypsonian Wilmoth Houdini and the musical theatre team of Rodgers & Hammerstein. Since I Left You – released in Australia in 2000 and in the U.S. and the U.K. in 2001 – perfectly captured the hazy millennial zeitgeist. Pitchfork awarded it a 9.5/10 rating, noting, “Since I Left You sounds like nothing else…this is an album brimming with spontaneity, joy, sadness, humor, reflection, and general human-ness” while NME hailed the album as a “joyous, kaleidoscopic masterpiece of sun-kissed disco-pop.” Since I Left You was named one of 2001’s best albums by numerous critics – and its enduring influence was underscored when it placed in the top 10 of Pitchfork’s Top 200 Albums of the 2000s. The Avalanches, meanwhile, have become the stuff of folklore. The announcement of the release of Wildflower comes after years of speculation and rumors. “What kept us going during the making this record was a belief in the day-to-day experience of music as a life force – as life energy,” says The Avalanches’ Robbie Chater. “Hearing a certain song on a certain morning can change your day; it can make the world look different, changing the way you perceive light refracting through the atmosphere for the rest of the afternoon. Literally changing the color and feeling-tone of your world.”

File Under: Electronic, Hip Hop
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barreca

Marc Barreca: Twilight (Palace of Lights) LP
“Marc Barreca has been creating and performing electronic music since the mid 1970s. Following recent vinyl reissues of Barreca’s 1983 cassette Music Works for Industry via the RVNG spin-off Freedom To Spend, and a compilation of early cassette tracks on Vinyl On Demand’s acclaimed American Cassette Culture, Palace of Lights has reissued the artist’s first album for the label. 1980’s Twilight was one of the earliest releases on Palace of Light, and is part of an ongoing program of documenting the roots of the Pacific Northwest independent impulse. This remastered and expanded edition includes one previously unreleased track on the LP and an additional six bonus tracks via the enclosed download card. Twilight struck out in a distinct direction, taking steps into the ambient and industrial while carrying along a phonographic sensibility. Using sounds derived from a variety of acoustic as well as electronic sources, Twilight foreshadowed the diversity and pliability of sampled, industrial and lowercase musics, ensuring the album was remarkably prescient and remains resiliently fresh to this day. Textura (reviewing Tremble) said ‘Barreca’s lava-like soundworlds are heady constructions whose sounds spill forth in thick clusters and collectively present themselves as heaving conglomerations of shape-shifting sound… a word like organic is less applicable than geologic, given the immense tectonic force with which its material convulses.'”

File Under: Electronic, Ambient
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fantasy

Sharon ‘Mhati’ Chatham: Fantasy (Cinedelic) LP
Cinedelic Records presents a reissue of Fantasy (1973) by Sharon “Mhati” Chatam. Originally released in 1973 on RCA, this obscure library music title was produced by Maestro Gian Franco Reverberi using the pseudonym of Ninety as previously done before for other records like Psycheground Group Library on Lupus and the two Underground Set releases. The style is different from the aforementioned albums and is closest to the style of murky erotic cult soundtracks created for Renato Polselli as “Fire Shadows In The Sunset” features congas, groovy piano, spacey synthesizers and vocals. It contains many other amazing tracks like “I’ve Got An Idea” which includes insane fat drums, hypnotic bass, trippy piano and beautiful phased flutes, or the jazz groove “Closed In a Drugstore”, the up-tempo funk “You’re So Vain” (Carly Simon), the hip-hop drum on the cover versions of “Daniel” (Elton John, Bernie Taupin), “Sylvia’s Mother” (Shel Shilverstein) and “Vincent” (Don McLean), and the slow psychedelic cinematic lounge of “Quel Che Non Saprei Dirti Mai A Parole”. Comes in glossy cover. Includes digital download code. Edition of 500.

File Under: Library
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CNLP047LP_PROD

Stelvio Cipriani: Rhythmical Movement (Cinedelic) LP
Cinedelic Records presents a reissue of Rhythmical Movement (1980) from Stelvio Cipriani. Maestro Cipriani is one of the most known and appreciated composers of Italian soundtracks, whose unmistakable style makes it one of the most appreciated and collected. Rhythmical Movement came out only as a promo-library LP for CAM records in 1980 and is therefore a very rare album pressed in limited quantity. But what impresses most is the high level content and, as explicitly expressed in the title, no rhythm decreases. After a jazz intro depart sequentially tunes full of funk, soul, samba and disco, with references also to the classic tradition of Italian poliziotteschi films for which Cipriani is the absolute master. Alternating on a drum and congas base are wah-wah guitar, but also often distorted as in fierce riffs of “Storm In A Teacup” and “Do Not Tamper With My Things”, piano-electric and horns. Two tracks, “What Can I Do” and “Living And Loving” were composed with Michael Fraser, the famous UK musician and producer very active in Italy since the early ’70s. Also of note are the curious “Percussion Gun” and “Chicago U.S.A.” built on the popular bassline of “In-a-Gadda-da-Vida” by Iron Butterfly. An unmissable record to listen and dance to. Comes in a wonderful minimal mirror-cover. Includes a digital download code. Edition of 500.

File Under: Library
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miles ahead

Miles Davis: Miles Ahead OST (Legacy) LP
Miles Ahead tells the story of a few lost days in the life of Miles Davis (Don Cheadle), the virtuoso, fighter and genius, as he bursts out of his silent period, conspires with a Rolling Stone writer (Ewan McGregor) to steal back his music, and relives the years he had with his great love, Frances Taylor (Emayatzy Corinealdi). Davis’ mercurial behavior is fueled by memories of his failed marriage to the talented and beautiful dancer. During their romance and subsequent marriage, Frances served as Davis’ muse. It was during this period that he released several of his signature recordings including the groundbreaking Sketches of Spain and Someday My Prince Will Come. “Miles was many things…a supreme artist and a national treasure but also an enigma to those around him, especially during his so-called quiet period,” said director and star Cheadle. “With the family’s blessing and Miles’ tenets on creativity as our guide, we used these cloistered years as a jumping off point to compose the story of a self-exiled artist creating his own ‘centrifugal adventure’ to spin himself back into playing music again.” The accompanying original motion picture soundtrack features 11 essential tracks spanning 1956 to 1981, select dialogue from the film featuring Cheadle in character, and five original compositions written, co-written, produced and/or performed exclusively for Miles Ahead by Robert Glasper. These include “What’s Wrong with That?” (a jam that closes the movie imagining Cheadle as Miles playing in the present day with guest performers Glasper, Herbie Hancock, Wayne Shorter, Gary Clark, Jr., Esperanza Spalding and Antonio Sanchez) and “Gone 2015,” an end-credits song featuring guest verses from rapper Pharoahe Monch. Comes complete with revelatory new liner notes penned by Cheadle.

File Under: Jazz, Soundtrack
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inter

Inter Arma: Paradise Gallows (Relapse) LP
After already having taken forward-thinking extreme music to unprecedented heights over the course of their short but propulsive career, Richmond’s Inter Arma are back with another opus of epic proportions. Like the band’s previous works, the new album Paradise Gallows is direct and foreboding while maintaining a nuanced, artful perspective. Inter Arma’s signature palette of dissonant high-end and abyssal low-end has been augmented with swathes of thick, impressionistic melody that lend Paradise Gallows a truly biblical sense of scale, both lyrically and in terms of the album’s sonic content. Harsh and acoustic passages (including the band’s first-ever foray into clean vocals) spar with complex rhythmic structures across nine sweeping tracks over 71 minutes of expansive, progressive heaviness. Dense, funereal, and richly evocative, Paradise Gallows is a vibrant blend of doom, post-metal, sludge, avant-garde, black and death metal, and is a singular and powerful new addition to the band’s already monumental discography.

File Under: Metal
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leimerK. Leimer: Closed System Potentials (Palace of Lights) LP
“Following the RVNG reissues of A Period Of Review (ranked the #7 reissue of 2014 by The Wire) and Artificial Dance (ranked the #2 reissue of 2015 by The Wire), Closed System Potentials, recorded in 1979 and originally released in 1980, finds its way back to vinyl in a completely remastered and expanded edition. The LP includes two previously unreleased tracks, and the download card includes an additional two unreleased tracks, all taken from the original Closed System Potentials sessions. In their review of A Period of Review, Pitchfork said, ‘These pieces most closely evoke the work of Roedelius and Moebius in Cluster: meditative, wistful, lovely, giving off gentle glimmers of light. In trying to think if the closest American corollary for this set, the possibility emerges that Kerry Leimer is one of the lone examples of American kosmische music, that elegant hybrid that falls somewhere between the Velvets-style mesmerism of Can in the early ’70s and the placid tones of new age music that arose in the next decade. It’s a sound that applies to mid-’70s Cluster, Ash Ra Tempel, Popul Vuh, the second side of Kraftwerk’s Autobahn, and others.’ K. Leimer founded the Palace of Lights label in 1979. Leimer’s early work was reissued by Autumn and RVNG in 2014 and 2015, and his early cassette work is in the critically acclaimed Vinyl On Demand box set American Cassette Culture. He has been actively producing music since the mid 1970s – his current catalog includes 16 still-in-print albums plus two collaborative albums with Marc Barreca.”

File Under: Electronic, Ambient
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crash

Dave Matthews Band: Crash (Legacy) LP
RCA Records and Legacy Recordings celebrate Dave Matthews Band’s 25th anniversary in July 2016 with the first-ever vinyl release of Crash, the group’s best-selling second studio album. Newly re-mastered from the original flat analog tapes, Crash will be available as a 2LP set, pressed on 180g 12″ vinyl and housed in a gatefold jacket that features an eight-page booklet packed with previously unpublished photographs of the band. Produced by Steve Lillywhite (U2, The Rolling Stones, Peter Gabriel, The Pogues), and originally released on RCA Records on April 30, 1996, Dave Matthews Band’s Crash brought the band three Grammy nominations and one award for Best Rock Vocal for the hit single “So Much To Say.” The album peaked at No. 2 on the Billboard 200 and has been certified seven times platinum by the RIAA, in recognition of seven million copies sold. Following its success with Crash, the Virginia-based Dave Matthews Band – singer/guitarist Dave Matthews, drummer Carter Beauford, saxophonist LeRoi Moore, violinist Boyd Tinsley and bassist Stefan Lessard – became the first band in history to have six consecutive studio albums debut at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 – Before These Crowded Streets, Everyday, Busted Stuff, Stand Up, Big Whiskey and the GrooGrux King and Away from the World. The group has sold a collective 38 million albums and DVDs combined and more than 20 million tickets to its live performances.

File Under: Alt-Rock
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minor

Minor Victories: s/t (Fat Possum) LP
Comprised of Mogwai’s Stuart Braithwaite, Slowdive’s Rachel Goswell, Editors’ Justin Lockey and his brother James, Minor Victories were born out of Justin’s desire to create an extreme noise EP topped off with delicate female vocals. It became quickly apparent that the power of the resulting tracks was more than enough to lay the foundation stones of a full album, and so Minor Victories became a cinematic ten-track LP. Masterfully crafted by four band members who have somehow never all been in the same room together, it was also produced and engineered by Justin.

 File Under: Shoegaze
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drive

OST: Drive (Lakeshore) LP
Available again! Original Motion Picture Soundtrack to the acclaimed 2011 Nicolas Winding Refn film Drive compiled and composed by Cliff Martinez. The film stars Ryan Gosling as a Hollywood stunt driver moonlighting as a wheelman who discovers that a contract has been put on him after a heist gone wrong. In addition to Martinez’s own late-’60s German experimental inspired compositions, the soundtrack features material by French DJ Kavinsky (“Nightcall”), The Chromatics (“Tick of the Clock”) and College featuring Electric Youth (“A Real Hero”). “[Driver] is half man, half machine,” says Refn. “But the machinery, his car, is an antique. Late ’70s bands like Kraftwerk inspired my idea of making a movie where the score was electronic, but at an infant stage – crude in its technology, yet extremely poetic. Drive is like Pretty in Pink with a head smash. When I was cutting the movie, people kept asking, ‘Why are you using the entire songs?’ I said, ‘Because John Hughes did.’ He never played just a clip. It almost becomes a musical in that sense.” “One thing that was unique for me about this project was having songs exert such a strong influence on the score,” said Martinez. “That helped to create a unified, one-size-fits-all, style of soundtrack…the 80s electronic pop style made a lot of sense to me. I knew that Nicolas (Refn, director) was in love with that sound and I saw a way to acknowledge it with vintage synth sounds and cover most of the dramatic food groups while referencing that style.”

File Under: OST
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rodier

Roger Rodier: Upon Velveatur (Sagara) LP
Canadian folk-rock from Roger Rodier, featuring acoustic guitar, lush orchestral arrangements, and fantastic female backing vocals. Drawing inspiration from British contemporaries such as Al Stewart and Nick Drake as well as a major talent to the south in Crosby, Stills, & Nash, Rodier is a talented crafter of songs, ranging from lilting to eviscerating, and all points in between. Fetching outrageous sums in the online market, this Canadian singer-songwriter rarity is finally back in print on LP.

File Under: Folk Rock
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sonic youth

Sonic Youth: Murray Street (Geffen) LP
Murray Street is Sonic Youth’s twelfth full-length studio effort and first to feature the all-out collaboration (writing, playing and production) of the great Jim O’Rourke. Named after the New York street where the band’s studio was situated and where a plane engine landed on September 11, 2001, Murray Street finds the band building their signature avant garde explorations within a more song oriented framework. The results are obliquely melancholic yet tuneful and the album moves effortlessly and enjoyably between tones, structures, textures and melodies with new found purpose and precision. Songs like “The Empty Page,” “Disconnection Notice,” and “Rain On Tin”) easily hold their own among the many highlights in SY’s vast and varied catalog.

File Under: Indie Rock
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…..Restocks…..

Aesop Rock: Impossible Kid (Rhymesayers) LP
Air: Moon Safari (EMI) LP
Alabama Shakes: Boys & Girls (ATO) LP
Black Mastiff: Music Machine (New Damage) LP
Black Mountain: IV (Jagjaguwar) LP
Boards of Canada: Geogaddi (Warp) LP
David Bowie: Heathen (Columbia) LP
Can: Future Days (Mute) LP
Nick Cave: Push the Sky Away (Bad Seeds) LP
Miles Davis: Birth of Cool (Waxtime) LP
Dr. Dre: The Cronic (Interscope) LP
Durutti Column: LC (Factory Benelux) LP
Earl Sweatshirt: I Don’t Like Shit… (Columbia) LP
Ella Fitzgerald/Louis Armstrong: Ella & Louis (Waxtime) LP
Dexter Gordon: Our Man in Paris (Blue Note) LP
Iron Maiden: Number of the Beast (BMG) LP
Iron Maiden: Powerslave (BMG) LP
J Dilla: Jay Love Japan (Vintage Vibes) LP
Shelia Jordan: Portrait of Shelia (Blue Note) LP
King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard: Nonagon Infinity (ATO) LP
Kendrick Lamar: Good Kid… (Aftermath) LP
Kendrick Lamar: To Pimp A Butterfly (Aftermath) LP
Love: Forever Changes (Rhino) LP
M83: Junk (Mute) LP
John Mayall: And Blues Breakers (Sundazed) LP
MF Doom: Special Herbs 1 & 2 (Metal Face) LP
Hank Mobley: No Room for Squares (Blue Note) LP
Modest Mouse: Lonesome Crowed West (Glacial Pace) LP
Thelonious Monk: Brilliant Corners (Original Jazz Classics) LP
Thelonious Monk: Monk’s Dream (Waxtime) LP
Mumford & Sons: Babel (Glassnote) LP
Joanna Newsom: Have One On Me (Drag City) LP
Nine Inch Nails: Downward Spiral (Interscope) LP
Jim O’Rourke: The Visitor (Drag City) LP
Iggy Pop: Post Pop Depression (Loma Vista) LP
Public Enemy: Fear of a Black Planet (Def Jam) LP
Lou Reed: Transformer (Legacy) LP
Terry Riley/Don Cherry/Karl Berger: Live in Koln (Modern Silence) LP
Sigur Ros: Takk (Krunk) LP
Sturgill Simpson: A Sailor’s Guide to Earth (Atlantic) LP
Soul Asylum: Grave Dancer’s Union (Brookvale) LP

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…..news letter #749 – more lies…..

Well, I’ve got some good news, and some bad news for you this week. The good news, is that this week’s list isn’t nearly as big as the last few. Don’t get me wrong, there’s some killer wax this week, but just less than the last couple of weeks. Now the bad news… I purchased a lovely batch of some killer high end 90s-00s indie rock/alternative original pressing LPs and a boatload of 45s. The likely won’t start going out until next week but, be warned, bring a hanky.

If you haven’t listened to it yet, our pal Jeff interviewed me about the ins and outs of running a record shop for his excellent podcast Cups n Cake last week. AND as an added bonus, they also interviewed James and Lee from Slates about their upcoming tour. Check it out here.

Did you know you can receive this weekly update in your email inbox? Click here to subscribe.

…..pick of the week…..

iwc

Ian William Craig: Centres (Fat Cat) LP
HIGHLY RECOMMENDED! ‘Centres’ is the stunning new album from Vancouver-based vocalist / composer Ian William Craig, and his first release for Fat Cat (Max Richter, Hauschka, Dustin O’Halloran, Jóhann Jóhannsson, etc) following two critically lauded back to back albums for Recital Program. Ian William Craig is a trained operatic vocalist who combines his voice with analogue synthesizers, reel-to-reel machines, and faulty tape decks to create sublime cascades of unpredictable decay and beauty. Though classically trained and grounded in the choral tradition, Craig’s early albums were centered significantly around the piano, with his voice merely a marginal presence. But in recent years his practice has come to focus increasingly around his powerful voice, as can be witnessed on ‘Centres’. Fundamentally distressed yet texturally lush, ‘Centres’ is an immensely deep, rich and rewarding listen. It was recorded in an assortment of studio and other locations across his Vancouver hometown: in concert halls and classrooms; train-yards and live rooms, as well as Craig’s own home. It was created using a mixture of sources – synthesizer, Hammond organ, guitar, accordion, wire recorder, loop station, Craig’s array of re-purposed tape decks and “cassette choir”. The songs were created manipulating tape loops through two or three decks at once to create strange deteriorating delays with different colors. Craig would then circuit-bend the bias to create odd kinds of distortion, or bend the sound back into itself so it feeds back in unpredictable ways.  Continually honing and pushing this process, the album shows a quite brilliant attention to textural detail. Morphing, swirling, scouring, shimmering, it continually expands and contracts around you. Forging a harmonically gorgeous and utterly immersive listening experience, it pulls you from the rousing, slow-build of the opening ‘Contain (Astoria Version)’ through the standout ‘A Single Hope’, with its huge bass and Hammond organ swells, and through shifting cloud-zones of ‘Drifting to Void on All Sides’ or ‘Power Colour Spirit Animal’, the Nico-esque accordion opening of ‘The Nearness’, and back to the cyclical ending of ‘Contain (Cedar Version)’, one of the cleanest and sparest tracks here – pared back to the purity of a single voice and guitar. ‘Centres” is a stunning album that stands with a similarly unique sense of vision and integrity as the likes of William Basinski or Colin Stetson.

File Under: Ambient, Electronic
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…..new arrivals…..

big business

Big Business: Command Your Weather (Joyful Noise) LP
Big Business’ 5th studio album Command Your Weather. Recorded in Joshua Tree, CA, Command Your Weather sees Big Business return to its original two-man lineup of Jared Warren and Coady Willis.  It’s a haunting dream about the struggle for dominance of will over the power and unpredictability of nature. Or it’s just a really great rock record, it depends on how weird you’re willing to get. But you’ve never had so much fun being crushed in the cogs of the universe’s great machine, that much is for sure! I mean, there’s no law against having a couple cold beers while we all burn in the fire of time, am I right?! Founded in 2003 in Seattle, WA., Big Business has spent the last 13 years touring the world and making records. In 2006 Jared and Coady joined forces with the Melvins and moved to Los Angeles. Performing as members of the Melvins and staying autonomous as their own band, they have been there ever since.

File Under: Metal, Stoner
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boris

Boris: Pink (Sargent House) 3LP
Pink, the landmark 2006 album by Boris, which earned widespread critical praise – including Pitchfork’s Top 10 Albums of 2006 – will be reissued in a deluxe edition in the summer of 2016 to commemorate the album’s 10th anniversary. The deluxe 3LP box set features an entire album of previously unreleased tracks recorded during the Pink album sessions in 2004-2005. The bonus Forbidden Songs collects 9 tracks of the same hyperactive, accessible and aggressive caliber of the original album, available here for the first time, mixed (with additional editing and arrangement) in 2015 and mastered in January 2016. Like the original U.S. vinyl release, the Pink (Deluxe Edition) LP set also has three longer edits of songs that were truncated on the original CD issue (“Farewell”, “Pseudo-Bread” and “My Machine”). And, Pink (Deluxe Edition) additionally features the artwork of the original Japanese release, made by the band members themselves. Pink was Boris’ tenth album and a major breakthrough that earned new fans outside of the underground metal community – the track “Farewell” was even featured in Jim Jarmusch’s classic film The Limits of Control. The album landed on countless “best of the year” lists from underground metal sites to mainstream rock magazines. And the praise was certainly well deserved for its more accessible sound and explorations into shoegaze and ambient structures alongside brutal noise, searing psychedelia and apocalyptic doom. Pink succeeds at what most bands cannot do: swiftly changing styles from song to song, while always sounding distinctly like themselves. The seamless, explosive set of fan favorites from the classic longtime lineup of drummer/vocalist Atsuo, guitarist/vocalist Wata and bassist/guitarist/vocalist Takeshi still sounds as mindblowing as it did a decade ago. And, Forbidden Songs continues with the same unbridled creativity and ferocity. These songs aren’t outliers, they’re rather more like the director’s cut version of the original album.

File Under: Psych, Japanese
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comet control

Comet Control: Center of the Maze (Tee Pee) LP
Toronto space rock cosmonauts Comet Control re-enter the atmosphere with their stargazed sophomore album, Center Of The Maze. Flooded with swirling synths, ghostly vocals and fuzz-bomb guitars that burst into flames in electrifyingly airborne ways, the record effortlessly merges the ethereal and the terrestrial; the end result a 43 minute collection of blinding explosions and brilliant fade-outs. Overdriven riffs reign supreme and songs build with mantra-like power before collapsing into majestic dreaminess. Like watching a rocket take off at close range, the sound of Comet Control is both exhilarating and mesmerizing, propelled into orbit by unwavering melody and unhinged creativity. Comet Control features Andrew Moszynski (guitar) and Chad Ross (vocals/guitar), formerly of Canadian psych rock champions Quest For Fire. For fans of: Black Mountain, Swervedriver, The Black Angels, Catherine Wheel, The Brian Jonestown Massacre and Medicine.

File Under: Space Rock
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headwound

Head Wound City: A New Wave of Violence (Vice) LP
Head Wound City might just be the supergroup to end all supergroups. Not just end them, scorch the earth behind them. Armed with Jordan Blilie and Cody Votolato of The Blood Brothers, Nick Zinner of Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Gabe Serbian of Cattle Decapitation and The Locust on drums, and – thrown in for good measure – Justin Pearson, known for his work in every band ever to obnoxiously violate your eardrums. Their aptly titled debut album, A New Wave of Violence (taken from the Raymond Pettibon zine), sounds like what one might imagine the sum total of five people known for innovation in discordant audio assault would sound like. Just an unwavering offensive launched on your brainwaves. Head Wound City has been kicking around more or less since 2005 when they released a debut EP, but now they’re back full-length style courtesy of Vice Records.

File Under: Indie Rock, Yeah Yeah Yeahs
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SOREN-JUUL-PUSHING

Soren Juul: This Moment (4AD) LP
Danish artist Søren Juul releases his new album, This Moment, on June 17th. This is the first album under his own name, having previously recorded as Indians. It’s a deeply personal account of Juul’s life over a tumultuous three-year period, and a first taste of the record, ‘Dear Child’ can be heard at 4ad.com. Recorded mainly in Copenhagen and finished in Los Angeles with producer and fellow Dane Peter Stengaard, ‘This Moment’ is an uplifting and redemptive work. The immersive soundscapes of the songs reach heights Juul’s work as Indians only hinted at. As Indians, Juul scored the song “Oblivion” for the major motion picture The Fault In Our Stars, composed works for the Copenhagen Philharmonic, and was nominated in four categories for the prestigious Danish music awards, Gaffa Prisen. Juul has toured the world with Julia Holter, Beirut and Perfume Genius.

File Under: Indie Rock
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kayodot

Kayo Dot: Plastic House on Base of Sky (Flenser) LP
Kayo Dot has never made the same record twice. From chamber music to progressive black metal, from goth to jazz and avant-garde classical, Kayo Dot is undeniably experimental and utterly unclassifiable. Since its inception in 2003, the band has released seven full-length albums, including their debut Choirs of the Eye (2003), the conceptual double-album Hubardo (2013) and most recently Coffins on Io (2014, The Flenser). Now, Kayo Dot is gearing up for the release of a new LP: Plastic House on Base of Sky, due out June 2016 from The Flenser. On Plastic House on Base of Sky, Kayo Dot fully embraces Coffins on Io’s electronic allusions, incorporating a variety of synthesizers (many of them vintage analog) to create another work of ambition and magnitude that fuses the explosive musical imagination of a band like Magma with the forward-thinking experimentalism of Conrad Schnitzler or Morton Subotnick. This 40 minute-long, 5-song LP goes beyond the future-noir theme of Coffins on Io and is an innovative and biomechanical work of art. Think seemingly impossible architecture, dead satellites, trashed space stations, wasted old lady heroin addicts hanging out by cheap motel pools, broken people, and a hopeless dead and polluted world transitioning into artifice and mechanism and reacting by being self-destructive, either to the point of utter obliteration or a glorious transhuman condition. Toby Driver, the primary composer and bandleader of Kayo Dot, has been fiercely productive over the years, and while that usually refers to how many songs or albums an artist has made, with Driver the productivity is in the realm of ideas as much as music itself. In the course of a single Kayo Dot song, the amount of risks and liberties taken with form and convention usually outnumbers what other artists cover in a full album. For as much ground as they cover, it’s always in the service of a carefully curated mood and this is apparent on Plastic House on Base of Sky’s exploration of our mechanical post-human future-present. The core of Kayo Dot might be that mood – one that lies at the crossroads of darkness and mystery. In film, music that accompanies mystery is often nocturnal, playing on a primal relation in our brains between the unknown and the night. It’s this intersection that is the essence of Kayo Dot. Driver, who recorded Plastic House on Base of Sky in various locations from August 2014 to December 2015, again collaborates with lyricist Jason Byron. Byron, a lifelong student of the occult, gives the listener a feast of words to unpack that are as elusively satisfying as the labyrinths of sound they travel through. Whether by way of menacing guitars, ethereal woodwinds, or aggressive electronics, there’s always a sense that a new passage could open, that around the next corner could be anything.

File Under: Experimental, Prog
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king gizzard

King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard: Nonagon Infinity (ATO) 2×10″
In tomorrow… Double Custom Die Cut Picture Disc in Clear Plastic Gatefold / Limited to 1,000 Units. “Nonagon infinity opens the door,” sings Stu Mackenzie, frontman of Australian psych-rockers King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard. It turns out, though, that once the door’s open, it never closes. That’s because the Melbourne septet has ingeniously crafted what may be the world’s first infinitely looping LP. Each of the nine, complex, blistering tracks on Nonagon Infinity seamlessly flows into the next, with the final song linking straight back into the top of the opener like a sonic mobius strip. It’s exactly the kind of ambitious vision that prompted Rolling Stone to dub the band “one of the most compelling collectives of art-rock experimentalists in recent years.” But far from a simple conceptual experiment, the album is both an exhilarating shot of adrenaline and a remarkable feat of craftsmanship, the result of painstaking planning and an eye for detail years in the making. The roots of Nonagon Infinity stretch back to 2014, when King Gizzard recorded their critically acclaimed album I’m In Your Mind Fuzz. “We actually wanted to do this with ‘Mind Fuzz,’ but it just didn’t work,” explains Mackenzie. “We ended up writing songs that needed to be on that record but didn’t connect to the others, so we had to abandon the idea, but the seeds were sown.” To an outsider, it may have seemed like the band had completely given up on the concept, as the ever-prolific group quickly followed Mind Fuzz with two more records in 2015, Quarters and the stripped-down Paper Mache Dream Balloon. The truth, though, was that King Gizzard was honing in on the Nonagon Infinity material the whole time, test-driving various tracks in their explosive live shows to prep for the monumental task of stitching them all together into one searing, multi-movement epic. Recorded at Daptone Studios in Brooklyn, the final result is an intricate and immersive listening experience. Lyrical refrains and musical motifs establish themselves and then submerge beneath the chaos, only to resurface unexpectedly later like familiar companions on a labyrinthine journey. Motorhead-grade riffs give way to King Crimson and Yes-levels of prog complexity, as songs churn through unusual time signatures and shifting rhythms with blunt force, laying waste to everything in their path. “Big Fig Wasp” references a particularly macabre insect that must kill itself in order to perpetuate the species, while “Gamma Knife,” with its 11/8-time drum solo, is named for a surgical tool that burns cuts into the skin, and “People-Vultures” plays like a sinister film soundtrack. Album opener “Robot Stop” pulls more directly from the band’s recent experiences, inspired in part by their relentless work ethic and tour schedule. The record is a force to be reckoned with on par with the road trains Mackenzie references in the album’s final track. “In the Australian desert, in the outback, there are what’s called road trains, which are these massive trucks pulling heaps of carriages that can end up being 50 meters long,” he explains. “They drive on the road really, really fast, and they’re deadly, with these bars in the front to kill kangaroos and anything else in their path.” Nonagon Infinity has opened the door for King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard, and they’re barreling ahead with more momentum than ever before now. Much like those road trains, with a band this good, the safest place to be is onboard.

File Under: Psych
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landing

Landing: Third Sight (El Paraiso) LP
Connecticut’s Landing have specialized in a mild and rural kind of psychedelia since the late ’90s; they have since moved closer to post-punk and shoegaze territory, but Third Sight — recorded specifically for El Paraiso Records’ Impetus series — builds on the hallucinatory soundscapes of the band’s earliest days. There’s a unique sense of motoric drift to these four long pieces, and an organic blend of rock instrumentation and analog electronics that brings to mind Eno’s best collaborations in the 1970s. But the group’s flair for fuzzy drones and commune-folk also betrays their affiliation with the experimental American east coast scene — these guys have played shows with their friends in Bardo Pond, released a split EP with Windy & Carl, and played numerous Terrastocks throughout their existence. And despite releasing one brilliant album after another, the band remains appallingly underappreciated. Perhaps because the tryyps Landing take are rooted in self-exploration. As trends in krautrock, drone, folk, and psychedelia ebb and flow, Landing remain unfazed. The door to Landing’s world is open, but there isn’t a flashing neon sign above it. These guys are far removed from the hustle and bustle of geographic cultural bubbles, both physically and spiritually. Listening through this LP is likely to stimulate mental images of rural winds blowing across vast American fields of grass, bonfires, blue rivers and power lines sailing through rolling hills. Landing’s psychedelia possesses a rare timelessness.

 File Under: Ambient, Post Rock
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macchi

Egisto Macchi: Biologia Animale e Vegetale (Cinedelic) 3LP Box
Cinedelic records present a reissue of one of Egisto Macchi’s major works, Biologia Animale e Vegetale, produced by Renato Pent. Biologia Animale e Vegetale was recorded in Torino in 1976 and originally published as double LP. Egisto Macchi, often remembered as a member of Gruppo di Improvvisazione Nuova Consonanza, the historic Italian improvising collective (that also included Franco Evangelisti and Ennio Morricone, among others), was a major figure within the contemporary music field from the fifties to the eighties. The life path of Egisto Macchi seemed to be devoted to the multiplicity of aesthetic choices and musical expressions. While tracing his life and work, one notices an interesting duality based both on a very inclusive approach towards all kind of expressive needs and full control of the level of communication. A complex personality revealing the coherence of a man trying to connect elements usually kept separate; the inherent need for approaching different sources and the ability to be inspired by a wide range of intuitions. Macchi has explored and experimented in the field of sound and music without ever forgetting about his moral and civil engagement. His compositional work takes shape from the idea that music and arts should be able to create a symbiotic contact between the creator (composer) and the beneficiary (listener). All his work finds its origin in the need to integrate the sound language with the feeling of a new developing society. In fact music was just one factor in a more complex chain which included his humanistic and sociological engagement; a syncretic philosophical narrative and a symbolic tale revealing deep anthropological aspects. The 3LP box set is a limited edition of 600.

File Under: Italian, Library
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metallica

Metallica: And Justice For All (Blackened) LP
Metallica’s 1988 release …And Justice For All is the thrash giants’ commercial breakthrough. The follow-up to 1996’s Master Of Puppets and the band’s fourth full-length overall, it was Metallica’s first album to reach the Top 10 (#6), first to earn a Top 40 single (“One”), and first to win a Grammy Award (“One”). Having gone platinum in just nine weeks, …And Justice For All has since sold over 8 million copies in the U.S. alone. The ambitious album is also Metallica’s first without original bassist Cliff Burton, who passed away in 1986 when the band’s tour bus overturned in Sweden while they were on tour promoting Master of Puppets. Seldom has a band recovered from such tragedy with such a triumphant statement of power, aggression, speed, and heightened social awareness. Replete with stunning riffs and immense songwriting, …And Justice For All is a landmark record in every sense of the word. …And Justice For All produced three singles (“Harvester of Sorrow,” “Eye Of The Beholder” and “One”), bringing the band unknown levels of success. They also chose this time to delve into new territory with their very first music video for “One” which was hardly the typical music video of the time. A dark, monochromatic, violent, and emotional piece, which pulled no punches, Metallica continued to prove that they were anything but typical.

File Under: Metal, Thrash
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omni

Omni: Deluxe (Trouble in Mind) LP
Omni – the band, not the hotel – are from the former home of the Braves: Atlanta. Playing lo-fi pop that channels the spectre of the late ‘70s and early ‘80s, Omni brings you back to an era where any sane person was reeling from the unfulfilled promise of the Space Age and Age of Aquarius bleeding into the looming threat of “Morning in America.” Omni distills the buzz and grit that snakes through the best of Television, Devo, and Pylon into surprisingly danceable, hook-laden slabs of raw, angular, sonic bliss. It’s still the summer of ’78, and pushing the roots of rock & roll to its limits remains in vogue. “Deluxe” serves as a fresh reminder that rock music can work outside of blues rooted, formulaic progressions without playing it safe behind a wall of effects. Arty enough to impress record enthusiasts, yet melodically attractive enough to transcend to those who’ve never asked: “’Sister Midnight’ or ‘Red Money’?” “Deluxe” is a decidedly hometown affair, recorded by Nathaniel Higgins (Carnivores) in their Atlanta practice space & mastered by Travis Thatcher. Released by Trouble In Mind Records on compact disc & black vinyl & includes a download code.

File Under: Indie Rock
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starwarsOST: Star Wars – The Force Awakens (Disney) LP
In tomorrow… Lucasfilm and visionary director J.J. Abrams joined forces to take you back again to a galaxy far, far away with the return of the Star Wars franchise via the worldwide phenomenon that was Star Wars: The Force Awakens. Five-time Academy Award-winning composer John Williams also returned to score the film which is presented here on limited edition Holographic 3D 180g double vinyl. Williams’ ubiquitous Star Wars “Main Title” theme has become part of popular culture since it was first heard accompanying Star Wars: A New Hope in 1977. It is no surprise that Williams’ orchestral compositions for Star Wars are among the most beloved and recognizable themes in cinematic history, from the classic “Main Title” theme introduced in Star Wars: A New Hope to the ominous “Imperial March” from Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back to the stirring “Duel of the Fates” from the prequel trilogy. After creating the scores for all six of the previous Star Wars films, Williams returned to compose and conduct his signature sweeping music for The Force Awakens. “I’ve loved doing the Star Wars films with all their fanfares and flourishes,” says Williams. “I actually feel as though I am still in the galaxy far, far away. I really never left it, having worked on all of the films. I’m happy to be continuing to be part of the whole fun of doing it. This is new. This is different. But it’s wed perfectly with the corpus of what Star Wars is. I’ve been lucky in my working life, especially with situations like Star Wars. It’s been a challenge, and fun and it’s been a privilege. I don’t think there’s anything quite like it in the history of film.” The Force Awakens was the first Star Wars score to be recorded in the United States as all the previous films in the saga were scored at Abbey Road with the London Symphony Orchestra. For the recording of the score in Los Angeles, Williams worked with members of the highly regarded freelance orchestra with which he’s recorded numerous film scores over the years. The music for The Force Awakens was recorded over several months while working in tandem with the film’s editorial and special effects teams on the West Coast. Audiences can expect to hear quotations from earlier Star Wars themes as Williams musically explores the story in the new film. For Williams, incorporating the previous themes is part of the fun of scoring film after film in the Star Wars saga and helps create what he calls “the fabric of the films.” Director J.J. Abrams comments, “Of the many unreal opportunities working on The Force Awakens provided, none was more thrilling than collaborating with John Williams. His mastery of his craft has never been more evident than on this soundtrack, which embraces his earlier, classic Star Wars themes while creating soaring, powerful new cues that, amazingly, integrate seamlessly. How he does it, no one will ever know!”

File Under: OST
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space dimension

Space Dimension Controller: Orange Melamine (Ninja Tune) LP
In early 2008, age 18, Space Dimension Controller (R&S, Clone, Royal Oak) made his first album in his bedroom in Belfast, now set for a release in May 2016 via Ninja Tune. Crunchy, tattered and enjoyably odd – Orange Melamine is a lovingly produced and deeply personal album that laces supernatural sounds and translucent synths with a sense of overflowing harmony. Washed in reverb and draped in hiss, the album draws influence from the old VHS tapes handed down to Space Dimension Controller from his older brother and cousins, as well as artists like Boards of Canada, Brian Eno and William Basinski. The album is also steeped in audio and visual references from 80’s and 90’s sci-fi films and animations; from The Guyver, Short Circuit, The Gobots, and Ghostbusters through to The Fifth Element, Escape from New York and Power Rangers – also reflected in the album’s visual identity created by Jacob Chabeaux.

File Under: Electronic
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stockhausen 1

Karlheinz Stockhausen: Kontakte (Modern Silence) LP
Modern Silence presents Kontakte written by Karlheinz Stockhausen. Kontakte (1959-60) was Stockhausen’s first piece to use both electronics and traditional instruments together, marking a turning point in his career, when his music was beginning to show the influences of American avant-garde jazz and composers like John Cage. In Kontakte, live musicians play alongside a tape recording of percussion sounds that have been altered by different electronic devices (i.e. a ring modulator or a reverberator). Stockhausen wanted the musicians to improvise over the prepared tape, but the musicians were at such a loss that Stockhausen eventually had to score the instrumental parts as well. 180 gram vinyl. Edition of 500.

File Under: Avant Garde, Experimental
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stockhausen 2

Karlheinz Stockhausen: Studie I & II (Modern Silence) LP
Modern Silence presents Studie I & II, Gesang der Jünglinge, Zyklus für zwei Schlagzeugern featuring compositions written by Karlheinz Stockhausen. A collection of Stockhausen’s most important works from the 1950s, particularly “Gesang der Jünglinge” (“Song of the Youths”) (1955-56) which is probably the most iconic piece of electronic music ever written. Only because of Stockhausen’s complete understanding of electronic equipment, along with his creative genius, was he able to produce this masterwork, the first piece of music to unify vocals and electronics. 180 gram vinyl. Edition of 500.

File Under: Avant Garde, Experimental
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stockhausen 3

Karlheinz Stockhausen: Beton-Studie (Modern Silence) LP
Modern Silence presents Beton-Studie / Zeitmass für fünf Holzbläser / Klavierstuck XI compositions written by Karlheinz Stockhausen. A collection of some of Karlheinz Stockhausen’s earliest work, including his earliest piece of musique concrète “Beton-Studie” (aka “Étude”) written by Stockhausen in 1952-53 at Pierre Schaeffer’s studio at the RTF in Paris. Until 1992 this piece was believed to have been lost. The LP also includes the celebrated “Zeitmass” (1955), and “Klavierstück XI, parts I-IV” (1956), both of which helped to cement Stockhausen’s role as one of the leading German composers of the 20th century. 180 gram vinyl. Edition of 500.

File Under: Avant Garde

…..Restocks…..

A Tribe Called Quest: Low End Theory (Jive) LP
Air: Moon Safari (EMI) LP
Alabama Shakes: Sound & Color (ATO) LP
Kevin Ayers: Joy of a Toy (Vinylissimo) LP
Bat For Lashes: Bride (Parlophone) LP
Nick Cave: Dig! Lazarus Dig! (Mute) LP
Converge: You Fail Me Redux (Death Wish) LP
Descendents: Milo Goes to College (SST) LP
Descendents: Somery (SST) LP
Dinosaur Jr.: Dinosaur (Jagjaguwar) LP
Dinosaur Jr.: You’re Living All Over Me (Jagjaguwar) LP
P.J. Harvey: Let England Shake (Island) LP
Kendrick Lamar: To Pimp A Butterfly (Aftermath) LP
Lumineers: Cleopatra (Dine Alone) LP
Hailu Mergia & Dahlak Band: Wede Haraer Guzo (Awesome Tapes From Africa) LP
Moondog: s/t (4 Men with Beards) LP
Radiohead: A Moon Shaped Pool (XL) LP
Radiohead: OK Computer (XL) LP
Joe Strummer: Global A Go Go (Anti) LP
Kamasi Washington: The Epic (Brain Feeder) 3LP

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