New Releases - 2/15/19
Boo Ray - Tennessee Alabama Fireworks CD (Soundly Music)
Alt-country/outlaw guitar-slinger Boo Ray delves deeply into the dire state of communication in the modern world with his new record, Tennessee Alabama Fireworks. The album plays like a southern gothic noir, and in his own words, explores the "nitty-gritty, guts and ugly parts of the human experience today." He is every bit a hard-boiled poet as many of the pioneers that came before him, from the likes of Tony Joe White, Willie Nelson, and Jerry Reed. Boo Ray fervently draws upon the situations and hurdles that make the world such a difficult environment to navigate these days. Continuing the dialogue from 2016's Sea Of Lights, Boo Ray dives head first into even more vulnerable territory as he wrangles themes of heartache, reopened wounds, loneliness and swallowing his pride. With "A Tune You Can Whistle", a raucous honky-tonk boogie that is as sincere and hopeful as it is macabre and melancholic, he laments about "one nation under the influence" of computer screens that have cast our humanity into a shroud of anxiety and detachment. Always self-effacing Boo Ray confesses in the middle-8 "If the pain of the pain wasn't worse than the pain of the change, not a single damned thing'd be different, I'd still be the same." Join us Friday, February 15th, at 6PM, for a free, live in-store performance by Boo Ray at Grimey's on the day his new album is released!
Tedeschi Trucks Band - Signs CD/LP+7" (Fantasy)
Signs is the fourth studio release from Tedeschi Trucks Band and offers another outstanding example of the Grammy-winning 12-piece juggernaut's ability to expand musical boundaries in ways that only a rare caliber of musician can achieve. A new high-water mark in their recording career, Signs showcases the band at their best - combining inventive musicality and provocative lyrics across eleven original tracks, penned by the group and a few dear friends, running the gamut from uplifting soulful anthems, to bittersweet ballads and driving rock and roll. NPR Music calls lead single "Hard Case" an "upbeat, shuffling instant classic." [Deluxe indie-store exclusive CD edition also available.]
Robert Ellis - Texas Piano Man CD/LP (New West)
"Hello. I'm Robert Ellis, the Texas Piano Man. I wanted to take a moment to say a few words about this record and what you might expect from it. Texas Piano Man is a collection of songs specifically written for my piano driven rock & roll band from the great state of Texas. Myself and the guys bring these songs to you in the very spirit of Texas itself; loudly, confidently, over the top, larger than life, at times deadly serious and yet always with a wink and a smile. We invite you to come on in, stay a while, and when you leave take with you the spirit of these songs, the spirit of Texas, and the spirit of the Texas Piano Man himself. Adios!"
Ryan Bingham - American Love Songs CD/2xLP (Axster Bingham)
Ryan Bingham's sixth studio album, American Love Song, finds the South Texas bred singer/songwriter honing his creativity on two distinct levels, the personal and the cultural. He co-produced it with Charlie Sexton, the superb Austin guitarist who has played for years in Bob Dylan's touring band. From the opening track - the spry "Jingle And Go", which recounts his early years as an itinerant open-mic performer working, like the great Texas bluesmen before him, for tips - to the closer, "Blues Lady", a tribute to Janis Joplin, Aretha Franklin, Bingham's own late mother, and all the other strong women this country has produced, the album combines autobiographical reflection with a bittersweet celebration of our collective spirit in the face of enduring difficulties.
Hayes Carll - What It Is CD/LP (Dualtone)
On What It Is, Houston, TX troubadour Hayes Carll is leaving the past behind. "I want to dig in so this life doesn't just pass me by. The more engaged I am the more meaning it all has. I want that to be reflected in the work," Carll says. What It Is continues the artistic risk-taking initiated by 2016's Lovers And Leavers; his voice is strong and assured, and his songwriting as truthful as ever. On the rambunctious, fiddle-punctuated, "Times Like These", he laments political division in America while delivering a rapid-fire plea to "do my labor, love my girl, and help my neighbor, while keeping all my joie de vivre." Carll's signature cleverness and aptitude for so-personal-you-might-miss-it political commentary is as strong as ever. The stark, "Fragile Men", co-written with singer-songwriter Lolo, uses humor and dripping sarcasm to examine his gender's resistance to change in less than three minutes of string-laden, almost Jacques Brel invoking drama. It's new musical territory for Carll, and the result is powerful. His voice is strong and resonant on these songs, and it's thrilling to hear him use it with a new authority. He is alternately commanding and tender, yet always soulful.
Trisha Yearwood - Let's Be Frank CD/LP (Gwendolyn)
New release from the country vocalist and TV cooking show host. Let's Be Frank is her tribute to Frank Sinatra, recorded in four days at Capitol records using Sinatra's vintage microphone and a 55-piece orchestra.
Rosie Flores - Simple Case Of The Blues CD (Last Music Company)
Flores lends her soulful voice and fiery guitar to songs by Roy Brown, Wilson Pickett, Heath Wilson, and a spate of new originals. [Vinyl edition due April 12.]
The Long Ryders - Psychedelic Country Soul CD (Omnivore)
With a sound reminiscent of the Buffalo Springfield and The Flying Burrito Brothers but with a harder edge, The Long Ryders anticipated the alternative country music of the 1990s by a decade. Featuring 11 new Long Ryders compositions and a tribute cover of the late great Tom Petty's song "Walls", Psychedelic Country Soul, their first new album in over 30 years, kicks off with the anthemic "Greenville", a track which proves the band haven't lost any of that magic guitar interplay. "Molly Somebody" is an eclectic pop tune that doesn't neglect any of their country and rock sensibilities, while the likes of "What The Eagle Sees" reflects the energy of early punk and power pop that so informed them in the early days. You can still hear their personal connection with the music of the '60s, but as ever The Long Ryders aren't a band who live in the past. [vinyl is import only and available for special order]
Perfect Son - Cast CD/LP+MP3 (Sub Pop)
Sometime in 2016, just as the Polish singer/producer Tobiasz Biliński began to find success through the dim and fractured electropop of Coldair, he knew it was time for a radical change. The songs on The Provider, Coldair's much-lauded second album, had been an exorcism of sorts. Laced with songs about early death, chronic disappointment, and clouded minds, the record was, as he puts it now, his earnest attempt to "get all this old sh*t out." That mission accomplished, he needed something new, a restart - the unabashedly radiant and unapologetically complex pop of Perfect Son, delivered in 10 perfect shots on Cast. In the past, Biliński's music has flirted with and explored the darkness, first in a sort of Transatlantic freak-folk and then with the gothic refractions of Coldair. But on Cast, Perfect Son steps boldly into the light without sloughing off emotional weight or depth. With powerful, sweeping production that recalls the best pop beats of Matthew Dear and arcing melodies that conjure the majesty of Shearwater, Perfect Son animates sensations of lust, belonging, and newfound trust with tumescent electronic arrangements that threaten the safety of any sound system.
Yann Tiersen - All CD/LP (Mute)
All is the first album to be recorded at Tiersen's new studio, venue and community center, The Eskal Project, built in an abandoned discotheque on the island of Ushant, a small island positioned in the Celtic sea between Brittany and Cornwall, Tiersen's home for the past 10 years. The album, mixed by Gareth Jones, continues the themes of environment and a connection to nature first explored on EUSA, incorporating recordings from outside of Brittany, such as the redwood forests of California as well as field recordings from Tempelhof airport in Berlin (on "Tempelhof"), and guest vocalists.
Ladytron - Ladytron CD/LP (Ladytron Music)
Electronic pop quartet Ladytron return with the release of their first new album in seven years. Ladytron is full of catchy hooks, rousing riffs, sweeping melodies, and thick textured harmonies. Thirteen songs that explore the disquiet of our times.
Copeland - Blushing CD (Tooth & Nail)
While they began as a rock band, Copeland's music has explored multiple genres and pulled in various stylistic influences like electronic and symphonic. In the past the musicians have aptly melded these styles, creating a unique amalgam of sounds. This time they wanted to take each sound and style and push it to its logical extreme. "We wanted to take all of the elements that made up our sound in the past and push those elements farther," Aaron Marsh says. "So, rock becomes more rock than we've been in the past. If we've taken elements of symphonic tones, let's now be very symphonic. When we're being electronic, be very electronic. We wanted to emphasize each element of sound harder, like an exaggerated version of Copeland's sound. We could be each thing individually by pushing each facet of our art in a more focused way." "On Your Worst Day" best exemplifies the band's sonic goals for Blushing, opening as a perfectly orchestrated song led by Aaron's voice and strings before transforming into a melancholy electronic number. "Night Figures" is an intimate love song, a theme that threads through the album. [Vinyl edition due March 22.]
Homeshake - Helium CD/LP (Sinderlyn)
Over his first three albums, Homeshake's Peter Sagar followed his own idiosyncratic vision, a journey that's taken him from sturdy guitar-based indie-pop to a bleary-eyed take on lo-fi R&B. Now, with Helium, Sagar is putting down roots in aesthetic territory all his own.
Piroshka - Brickbat CD/LP (Bella Union)
Piroshka is a new chapter from former Lush vocalist/guitarist Miki Berenyi, former Moose guitarist KJ ''Moose'' McKillop, Modern English bassist Mick Conroy and former Elastica drummer Justin Welch. The quartet's thrilling debut album, Brickbat, is named after the word for a missile, which nails the record's heavyweight lyrics if not the music's gorgeous, bittersweet and euphoric pop. Think of Brickbat as a wolf in sheep's clothing. The name Piroshka is taken from the Hungarian take on Little Red Riding Hood. Though Brickbat kicks off with a squeal of feedback, the album is far from a proper punk record, with as much sublime delicacy as physical force. They bring guitars to the fore but also electronic flourishes in all manner of spaces.
Noctorum - The Afterlife CD/LP (Schoolkids)
Noctorum is guitarist/singer-songwriter Marty Willson-Piper (The Church) and producer Dare Mason. This collaboration has an eclectic focus, making the quiet loud and vice-versa, singing words that might be spoken and playing indoor instruments that should be heard outside. It has to be imagined to exist. Afterlife is their fourth album.
Avril Lavigne - Head Above Water CD/LP+MP3 (BMG)
Avril Lavigne's first album in five years, Head Above Water, was written while she was coming out of the darkness surrounding her 2014 Lyme Disease diagnosis. During her battle, she sat behind a piano and sang past the pain, architecting the early framework for the new 12-track journey. 2017 represented a turning point as she slowly but surely recovered strength and started recording again, starting with lead single "Head Above Water". She details each trial and tribulation from a perspective of triumph and emerges stronger than ever before. You're hearing the songstress as she was always meant to sound. "This is me and my fight," she affirms. "This album tells my story." In this headspace, she hit the studio with a bevy of collaborators, including Stephan Moccio, Chris Baseford, Johan Carlsson, Lauren Christy of The Matrix, Ryan Cabrera, Travis Clark, Bonnie McKee, JR Rotem, Mitch Allan and more. "I really took my time to dig deep. Lyrically I pushed myself to be the best I possibly could and pulled from my experiences. Because I had so much quiet downtime, I was able to stay in the zone and get in touch with myself. I sat at the piano and wrote my life." [Indie-store exclusive vinyl edition.]
Sir Babygirl - Crush On Me CD (Father/Daughter)
The pseudonymme of DIY pop diva/producer Kelsie Hogue, Sir Babygirl mixes and matches inspirations as sundry as Charli XCX, Hole, Hey Arnold!, and Tim And Eric Awesome Show, Great Job! into unabashedly bubblegum, unashamedly queer pop for a future free of genre boundary and the gender binary.
Chaka Khan - Hello Happiness CD (Island)
Hello Happiness, Chaka Khan's twelfth studio album, is her first new material since 2007's Funk This. Khan stated that she did not stop making music following the release of Funk This, but simply stopped releasing material, and also needed time to recover following the death of Prince in 2016, which she has since said made her rethink herself and admit herself into rehab for her addiction to prescription drugs. [ Vinyl edition due March 1.]
Czarface/Ghostface Killah - Czarface Meets Ghostface CD/LP (Silver Age)
Fresh off 2018's collaborative LP with the enigmatic MF Doom, Czarface Meets Metal Face, the adventure continues as Czarface faces off with Wu-Tang Clan's Ghostface Killah. Czarface Meets Ghostface brings strictly mind-melting beats and bars as 3 emcees clash like villains & heroes in the Savage Land. Czarface, a hip-hop & comics force comprised of Wu-Tang Clan General Inspectah Deck, Esoteric (who recently penned an X-Men comic for Marvel) and super producer 7L team up with Ghostface aka Iron-Man aka Tony Starks for murderous mayhem!
Sean Price & Small Professor - 86 Witness CD (Duck Down Music)
86 Witness features Rock of Heltah Skeltah, scratches by DJ Revolution, Guilty Simpson, Your Old Droog, Reef the Lost Cauze & more. The CD also features a bonus Sean Price EP; a re-issue of his project, Land Of The Crooks, entirely produced by M-Phazes. [Vinyl edition due March 1.]
Wicca Phase Springs Eternal - Suffer On CD/LP/Cassette (Run For Cover, LLC)
Wicca Phase Springs Eternal is the creative persona of Scranton, PA singer, songwriter, producer, and multi-instrumentalist Adam McIlwee. Since 2010, he has simultaneously established himself as a singular voice, adeptly combining his natural songwriting instincts with the digital culture enveloping his world. Suffer On is the first Wicca Phase record fully written by McIlwee, utilizing guitars and keyboards to create each song's core and building upwards from there.
Cosey Fanni Tutti - Tutti CD/LP (Conspiracy International)
The Throbbing Gristle member's first solo album in 36 years. Tutti's eight soundscapes represent an audio self-portrait, comprising manipulated sound recordings from Cosey's life, music and art: "It's the only album I've made that is an all-encompassing statement expressing the totality of my being. The album is an interpretation of my past and present, of my understanding the shifting perceptions of how they inform one another." These eight pieces were originally conceived as the soundtrack to the autobiographical film Harmonic Coumaction and performed live in February 2017. For this release, the music has been updated and enhanced with elements of the original tracks re-recorded and further processed specifically to create a unique stand-alone document.
J.S. Ondara - Tales Of America CD/LP (Verve)
J.S. Ondara offers a unique take on the American dream on Tales Of America, his debut album. Ondara grew up in Nairobi, Kenya, listening to American alt-rock and making up his own songs for as long as he can remember. After discovering the music of Bob Dylan, he moved to Minneapolis, MN in 2013 to pursue a career in music. There he began making his way in the local music scene, continually writing songs about what he saw, felt and experienced in a place far different from home. From a stockpile he says is hundreds of songs deep, Ondara chose 11 for Tales Of America. They're captivating tunes built around acoustic guitars and adorned with subtle full-band accompaniment for an openhearted folk-rock feel. He sings in a strong, tuneful voice well-suited to the gorgeous melancholy he expresses on the wistfully lovelorn "Torch Song", or his steadfast infatuation on "Television Girl". Ondara sings rueful lyrics in an anguished tone on "Saying Goodbye", and leaves plenty of room for interpretation on "American Dream", the first single.
Anemone - Beat My Distance CD/LP/Cassette (Luminelle Recordings)
Anemone is the brainchild of Soldevila, a Montreal native. Raised in the classical music tradition and formally educated in jazz music, Soldevila came to rock music late, at the tail end of high school, when she discovered krautrock mainstays like Neu! And Can. Traveling as a photographer and filmmaker throughout her early twenties, Soldevila rebelled against her strict musical upbringing, immersing herself into the psychedelic tradition in California, and punk and new wave music in France. The resulting album Beat My Distance is a dreamy psychedelic ride, hopping through genres and moods with exuberance. In the midst of all the swirly shoegaze guitars and krautrock beats, Anemone's songs are anchored by Soldevila's voice, always catchy and direct, powerful enough to cut through the mix and carry the song.
Millencolin - SOS CD/LP+MP3 (Epitaph)
Seminal Swedish skate-punk band Millencolin return with their first album in four years and ninth overall. It's clear the band members are just as unified as they were when they formed Millencolin, roughly 26 years, eight albums and 2,000 live shows ago. "Many Millencolin fans are notorious for having the mentality of 'I like their old stuff better', but Millencolin is not the same band they were 25 years ago when they started in their late teens. These are grown men who have important things to say and who have developed their skills, becoming better musicians and lyricists in the process, and SOS reflects this. It is their most social and political album to date, whilst still maintaining the timeless Millencolin tempo, beat and tone." - Wall Of Sound. [vinyl is available for special order]
Rotting Christ - The Heretics CD/LP/Cassette (Season Of Mist)
"For a band that formed in 1987, had a profound influence on Nordic black metal and continues to innovate-to varying degrees of success-it's a small wonder that Greek legends Rotting Christ are putting out some of their best material since Triarchy Of The Lost Lovers (or Thy Mighty Contract if you're too true for school). The Tolis bros-Sakis and Themis-continue to be the heart of Rotting Christ. While the spirited duo has had their ups (Sanctus Diavolos) and downs (Aealo) over the years, on lucky-number-13 The Heretics, Rotting Christ has delivered a true ace-the culmination of the Greeks' successes, in fact. The record is dark, heavy, mystical, memorable and f**king awesome all the way through." -- Decibel [vinyl is available for special order]
New on Vinyl
Pinegrove - Skylit 2xLP (Pinegrove)
"Completed in 2017 and shelved for almost a year, Pinegrove's third record is smaller, softer, and closer to the chest. Recorded and produced by Hall and guitarist Sam Skinner at a house in upstate New York, Skylight focuses on atmosphere and abstraction. While Cardinal was defined by anthemic eruptions of longing, these 11 songs move patiently and often disregard verse-chorus song structures in favor of loose vignettes." - Pitchfork [Includes an acoustic version of the album. CD edition due March 8.]
Methyl Ethel - Triage LP+MP3 (4AD)
Methyl Ethel has always been an expression of the subconscious. Born in the heat of the Australian summer, the early recordings were built from the ground up in various bedrooms and friends' studios; the same spaces Jake Webb returned to for Triage, the third album in a triptych he started with Oh Inhuman Spectacle (2015) and continued with Everything Is Forgotten (2017), which was named Best Independent Album by AIR, the Australian Independent Record Labels Association. Triage is like experiencing youth as a fever dream. Drawing from experiences that have been erased with time.
SWMRS - Berkeley's On Fire LP (Fueled By Ramen)
Determined to create something new within the rock genre, Swmrs collaborated with envelope-pushing producer Rich Costey (Muse, Death Cab for Cutie) for two months in the Spring of 2018 for an exercise in grand experimentation. Inspired in equal parts by The Breeders, Rage Against The Machine, and de la Soul, the sonic diversity of Berkeley's On Fire is indicative of a generation reared on streaming services.
Volcano - The Island LP (Tee Pee)
Featuring trailblazing musicians from San Diego, CA's groundbreaking psychedelic scene, including members of Harsh Toke, JOY and Loom, Volcano merges Afro-beat rhythms, electric rock guitar and dance floor grooves to forge a sound that is totally new, yet instantly recognizable.
Patti Smith - Radio Ethiopia [Reissue/1976] LP+MP3 (Sony Legacy)
Vinyl reissue of the second studio album by the Patti Smith Group. Radio Ethiopia was the follow-up record to Smith's widely acclaimed debut Horses. In interviews surrounding the album's release, Smith explained that she chose producer Jack Douglas in hopes of making the album a commercial success.
Jewel - Pieces Of You [Reissue/1995] 2xLP (Craft Recordings)
Expanded vinyl edition of the singer/songwriter's 1995 breakthrough album. Features five songs not included on the original CD release.
Eric Church - Chief Red [Reissue/2011] LP (Capitol Nashville)
Limited 180gm red vinyl LP pressing.
Cecil Taylor - Silent Tongues: Live At Montreux '74 [Reissue/1974] LP (ORG Music)
Cecil Taylor's solo piano set at the Montreux Jazz Festival in 1974 drew critical acclaim, earning five-star reviews from the likes of Rolling Stone Jazz Record Guide and All Music's Scott Yanow. The set features Taylor's five-movement work Silent Tongues, along with two encores.
Lazerbeak - Luther LP (Doomtree)
Aaron Mader, known professionally as Lazerbeak, is a Minneapolis-based artist and producer. Luther is Beak's first solo album in six years, and also marks the first solo music he's created since becoming a father of three. The record consists of seven slow-building instrumentals, largely influenced and inspired by a slow dive into mindfulness, meditation, and self-care over the past several years.
Trippie Redd - A Love Letter To You 3 LP (Ten Thousand Project)
Fresh off the release of his video for Topanga and his debut studio album, Life's A Trip, multi-platinum rapper and singer Trippie Redd releases A Love Letter To You 3. The 16-track album includes features from Juice Wrld, Emani 22, NBA YoungBoy, and Nel-Denarro.
Alchemist - French Blend Parts 1 & 2 LP (Alc)
Limited clear vinyl LP pressing. Veteran rap producer The Alchemist spent a few weeks cranking out instrumental projects full of sampled Francophone funk. The two collections are full of the sort of textured, psychedelic, prismatic beats that have been Alc's specialty lately.
Pete Rock - Soul Survivor 2LP (Nature Sounds)
Among the first ever hip-hop "producer albums", Pete Rock's 1998 classic Soul Survivor shined a much-deserved light on one of hip-hop's greatest ever music-makers. While Pete's smooth-as-butter instrumentals take center stage, the album also features a who's who of late 90s hip-hop royalty - artists like Method Man, Big Pun, Common, Black Thought, Kurupt, Raekwon, Noreaga, Ghostface Killah, Prodigy, Large Professor, and many more. Now, nearly two decades after its initial release, Soul Survivor is finally getting the proper reissue it deserves.
The Har-You Percussion Group - The Har-You Percussion Group LP (CuBop)
This super-rare legendary Latin funk release originally came out on ESP in 1969/1970. Although the title says Percussion Group, this is actually a Latin soul group led by master conga player Montego Joe as part of the Harlem Youth program of the 60's. A fantastic raw mix of funky bass, heavy drums, burning horn lines and soulful vocals, this is quite simply one of the great Latin releases of all-time. Includes the monster tracks "Welcome to the Party," "Feed Me Good," and "Oua-Train."
Breakestra - Hit the Floor LP (Ubiquity)
Breakestra performs alongside hip hop luminaries such as Jurassic 5, Dilated Peoples, Company Flow, Cut Chemist, and DJ Shadow. 2001's The Live Mix part 2 put the Los Angeles-based live funk band on the map, but 2005's Hit the Floor goes a step further as the group creates an album featuring all-original compositions and songs. Breakestra's main man Miles Tackett explains the transformation from a cover band into one flaunting their own material as the obvious next step, "While hip hop dj/medley inspired covers are the foundation of Breakestra, it is only natural we'd want to express our own soulful proclamations."
Various Artists - Take Us Home: Boston Roots Reggae from 1979 to 1988 LP (Cultures of Soul)
Boston was the first region in the US to really "get" reggae, with a network of clubs, singers and musicians coalescing to form an organic roots scene. Boston-based music journalists/historians Noah Schaffer and Uchenna Ikonne have compiled an overview of some of the most crucial cuts from the height of the Boston reggae boom in the 1980s, including Zion Initation, a solid, spiritually-inclined Rasta band, the I Tones, an ambitious, multiracial group that set a new standard for pop success, and the Vermont-based Lambsbread, a latter-day reggae reincarnation of the legendary African-American proto-punk trio Death.
Allan Rayman - Harry Hard-On LP (Republic)
Harry Hard-On mixes elements of '80s rock and that familiar '90s grunge sound Rayman utilized throughout his earlier projects; Courtney EP and Roadhouse 01long-player, with R&B and hip-hop influence present throughout the album.
The Momes - Spiralling LP + 7" (Mental Experience)
Originally released in 1989. Featuring Tim Hodgkinson (Henry Cow, The Work) on Hawaiian laptop noisy guitar and keyboards, Mick Hobbs (Family Fodder, The Work, Officer!) on bass, and Andy Wake (Unrest, Work & Play) on drums, The Momes were a unique power trio with an abrasive sound channeling post-punk, psych-prog, and avant-rock. Spiralling, their sole album, was recorded at This Heat's Cold Storage studio by Charles Bullen (This Heat) and originally released on the Woof label operated by Tim Hodgkinson and Bill Gilonis. Recommended for fans of This Heat, Wire, Sonic Youth, Faust, Amon Düül II, Can, Mission Of Burma. "They mix a kind of driving post-punk rock-lurch with beautiful lyrics, lovely Trout Mask guitar moments and plenty of twisted art-rock details" --Byron Coley
Ry X - Unfurl LP (Infectious Music)
Between its rippling beats, mellifluous guitars, poised piano and questing vocals, Unfurl does what it's title suggests: develops as if organically from Ry X's previous work, blossoming in delicate new directions while holding firm to its roots.
Museum of Love - Marching Orders 12" (Museum of Love)
Inaugural release from the label formed by Pat Mahoney of LCD Soundsystem and Dennis McNany of Jee Day. "Mahoney's voice vacillates smoothly between ghostly & falsetto, while McNany's arrangements and instrumentations bump, click, and whirr like a lovingly turned Rube Goldberg jukebox. Not too surprising, perhaps, considering they named the band after a song by schizophrenic outsider Daniel Johnson, and they cite Harry Nilsson and Roxy Music as influences." - Vibe
Eartheater - IRISIRI LP (PAN)
Eartheater (Alexandra Drewchin of Queens) distills foley-filled digital production, a three-octave vocal range, and classical composition into works suspended between obsessively detailed sonic tapestries and almost recklessly romantic and gestural electronica. IRISIRI lays out a shifting network of abstract song craft, laced with sudden structural upheavals, and collisions of mutated tropes from numerous sonic vocabularies. Modular synth staccato plucks hammer out in arrhythmic spirals over a carefully muzzled grid of pumping kicks. Technoid stabs mingle with crushed black metal. Drewchin's whistle-tone vocals drape over relentless harp arpeggios. Eartheater confounds expectations of structure and resolution before threading in a sugary melody that snaps us back into some conception, however hazy, of pop songwriting.
The Alchemist - French Blend Parts 1 & 2 LP (ALC Records)
The veteran hip-hop producer's twin Francophone funk-based instrumental projects, full of textured, psychedelic, prismatic beats, reissued on clear vinyl.
TRDMRK - TRDMRK EP (Hot Plate Records)
DJ Nu-Mark of Jurassic 5 and Slimkid3 of Pharcyde team up again, this time bringing along up-and-coming MC Austin Antoine to form TRDMRK. The EP features Dillon Cooper and Guilty Simpson. The TRDMRK EP gathers some of your favorite textures of classic Hip Hop but with a modern texture and soul!
Christoph de Babalon - Hectic Shakes 12" (Alter)
Four-track EP from veteran Hamburg producer Christoph de Babalon, tireless explorer of the intersections of breakcore, illbient, and drum and bass. Deceptively playful grooves are submerged in eerie, night bus-to-nowhere atmospherics. and familiar jungle tropes are distorted into something even devotees of the sound will find fresh. The EP closes with an homage to '90s ambient techno in a ruff, post-hardcore fashion. Skittering drums weave in and out of longing, futurist synth lines, and enough breakdowns to satisfy the dancefloor.
Billow Observatory - III: Chroma/Contour LP (Azure Vista Records)
The third album from the collaborative project of Danish producer Jonas Munk (Manual, Ulrich Schnauss collaborator) and Michigan native Jason Kolb (Auburn Lull). Much of the album plays out as a study in minimalism: the texture and color of each sound is explored in minuscule detail, with enough space in the sound field to allow each sonic constituent to breathe fully. There's a conceptual dimension to several tracks on the album, with guitars, analog synths and voices being mangled by samplers, computer software, and a broken dictaphone into pure abstraction. But simultaneously there's a melodic undercurrent, revealing a deeply emotional aspect of the music. RIYL: Aphex Twin's Selected Ambient Works, Stars Of The Lid, Slowdive's Pygmalion, Brian Eno.
Hot Water Music - A Flight And A Crash [Reissue/2001] LP+MP3 (Epitaph)
Hot Water Music - Caution [Reissue/2002] LP+MP3 (Epitaph) Limited colored vinyl LP pressings. A Flight And A Crash is a sonic exploration of the pain and triumph of life with an energy and emotion seldom heard. With some of the most intricate yet hard-driving rhythms the band has ever produced, this album pulls at your gut, head and heart all at the same time. It's easy to see why Magnet magazine called them "the best punk band on the planet" at the time. With a unique blend of heartfelt punk, guttural rock, and explorative neo-hardcore, Hot Water Music shirks categorization on follow-up Caution.
Reissues & From The Archives
David Bowie - Let's Dance [Reissue/1983] CD/LP (Rhino/Parlophone)
David Bowie - Serious Moonlight (Live '83) 2xCD (Rhino/Parlophone)*
David Bowie - Tonight [Reissue/1984] CD/LP (Rhino/Parlophone)
David Bowie - Never Let Me Down [Reissue/1987] CD/LP (Rhino/Parlophone)
Co-produced by Chic's Nile Rodgers, David Bowie's 15th album Let's Dance contains three of his most successful singles; the title track as well as "Modern Love" and "China Girl". Serious Moonlight is a previously unreleased live album recorded in Montreal in 1983. Originally mixed at the time by Bob Clearmountain, the double album captures Bowie on what at that time was his most successful tour. Bowie described his 1984 follow-up album Tonight an effort to retain the new audience that he had recently acquired. His 1987 album, Never Let Me Down, has been remastered and reimagined. *the Serious Moonlight live CD set has yet to arrive at the distributor and will ship late.
Megadeth - The World Needs A Hero [Reissue/2001] CD/LP (Sanctuary)
Megadeth - The System Has Failed [Reissue/2004] CD/LP (Sanctuary)
Newly remastered editions of thrash metal band's ninth and tenth albums. Compilations, Best Of's & Sundry Collections...
Various Artists - Sharp Objects (Music From The HBO Series) CD (eOne)
The soundtrack and musical companion to the groundbreaking summer mini-series crime drama Sharp Objects, starring Amy Adams as Camille Preaker, a troubled reporter returning home to an equally troubled assignment. Like the smash limited series and companion soundtrack for HBO's Big Little Lies the Sharp Objects series benefited greatly from the vision of director Jean-Marc Vallée and the Emmy Award-winning music supervision of Susan Jacobs, all drawn from the original Gillian Flynn novel of the same name. The soundtrack includes songs from Hurray For The Riff Raff, Snoop Dogg, Alison Krauss & Robert Plant, Willie Dixon, Sylvan Esso, and more.
Elvis Presley - The Best of The '68 Comeback Special CD (Sony Legacy)
A companion album to Elvis All-Star Tribute, NBC's star-studded special celebrating The King of Rock 'N' Roll's 1968 television special.
Marilynne Robinson - What Are We Doing Here?: Essays BK (Picador)
Marilynne Robinson has plumbed the human spirit in her renowned novels, including Lila, winner of the National Book Critics Circle Award, and Gilead, winner of the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Critics Circle Award. In this new essay collection she trains her incisive mind on our modern political climate and the mysteries of faith. Whether she is investigating how the work of great thinkers about America like Emerson and Tocqueville inform our political consciousness or discussing the way that beauty informs and disciplines daily life, Robinson's peerless prose and boundless humanity are on full display. What Are We Doing Here? is a call for Americans to continue the traditions of those great thinkers and to remake American political and cultural life as "deeply impressed by obligation [and as] a great theater of heroic generosity, which, despite all, is sometimes palpable still."
Ian Hunter - Diary of a Rock'n'Roll Star BK (Omnibus Press)
Long acclaimed as a classic fly-on-the-wall memoir, Diary of a Rock'n'Roll Star is Ian Hunter's candid account of Mott the Hoople's five-week American tour in November and December of 1972. In this diary, the first ever rock autobiography, Hunter strips away the glittering facade of the rock star's lifestyle and introduces readers to the reality of life on the road, from the discomforts of cheap motels to the fatigue brought on by endless travel. Newly republished to include Hunter's 2015 Japanese tour diary.