March Program Titles Released This Week:
Galactic – Already Ready Already CD (Tchoup-Zilla Records)
Galactic’s first new studio album in more than three years, Already Ready Already sees the renowned New Orleans-based instrumental outfit taking a distinctly contemporary approach towards their own progressive sound, interpolating modern rhythms and electronic instrumentation within the house-shaking framework of Crescent City funk pop ‘n’ roll. Produced by the band’s Robert Mercurio and Ben Ellman, the new LP finds Galactic once again enlisting a diverse array of vocal collaborators to assist in their musical exploration, each of whom lend lyrical flavor and individualistic personality to the band’s multi-faceted sonic grooves. Bookended by a high-powered pair of trademark Galactic instrumentals that give the album its title. The album is a short, sharp blast of undeniable creative muscle, from the stripped-down kick/snap verses of “Going Straight Crazy”, featuring New Orleans singer (and YouTube sensation) Princess Shaw, to punk cabaret artist Boyfriend’s quirky speed-rap on the breakneck “Dance At My Funeral”. As ever, Galactic’s omnivorous musical interests make easy classification difficult – Already Ready Already is as all-encompassing and universal as the band’s moniker established long ago.
Eric Gales – The Bookends CD/LP+MP3 (Provogue/Mascot Label Group)
Eric Gales returns with his brand-new album, The Bookends. The challenge of making The Bookends was for Gales to challenge himself. “As a guitar player it’s been established that I can play a little bit, just a little bit,” he says. But for this album he not only wanted to push himself as a musician, but also as a vocalist, to build up his vocal discography. “What spearheaded that was the artists that I have on the record,” he adds which includes B. Slade, Doyle Bramhall II and Beth Hart. If his previous album Middle Of The Road was the rebirth of Eric Gales, then The Bookends is him blurring boundaries and taking flight on a voyage of self-discovery.
Health – Vol. 4 Slaves Of Fear CD/LP (Loma Vista)
Few artists are better prepared to confront the confusion of life in 2019 than L.A.-based band Health. With their new album, Vol. 4: Slaves Of Fear, the trio has not only made the heaviest, most genre-obliterating record of its career; they’ve documented just how frightening it feels to be alive right now. From the sample-triggered thrash metal of “The Message” and “God Botherer”, to the bone-scraping sub-bass of “Feel Nothing”, and “Black Static”, this is Health at their most lacerating. With Lars Stalfors, they’ve upended their sound palette for our post-everything era: “NC-17” feels like Arabic bass music dragged through hell; “Rat Wars” groans with derelict, slow-rolling L.A. funk. In the lyrics, singer Jake Duzsik confronts death, isolation and hopelessness with an uncommon candor and intimacy. Album closer, “Decimation”, is the most radical move in the band’s catalog to date: a gorgeous guitar ballad, a plea for purpose and meaning in a time that makes both feel impossible.
Cass McCombs – Tip Of The Sphere CD/LP+MP3 (ANTI-)
Tip Of The Sphere follows 2016’s Mangy Love, which was named a “Best Rock Album Of The Year” by Pitchfork. While most of McCombs albums have been pieced together in different studios over an extended period, Tip Of The Sphere was recorded quickly and with a strong sense of purpose at Shahzad Ismaily’s Figure 8 Studios in Brooklyn. This new approach for McCombs brought his songs a raw immediacy and a special balance of compassion and experimentation with the intent of making a more consistent statement. The rock songs have more fervor, the ballads are more beautiful, the explorations more confident; the sounds of jazz and Latin music creep in through the back window. The thematic centerpiece, “Sleeping Volcanoes,” is a rousing, rock and roll number that uses a distinct lyrical approach to intensify the narrative. On the main refrain, a key phrase of the song is repeated continuously and taken through its possible meanings, almost like a jazz musician repeating a musical phrase through key and chord changes. As described by McCombs, “Sleeping Volcanoes” is about “people passing each other on the sidewalk unaware of the emotional volatility they are brushing past, like a sleeping volcano that could erupt at any moment.” [Deluxe LP comes in an embossed cover and features three bonus tracks, a poster and a ‘Castillo de la Esfera’ created by fellow Northern California artist and contemporary Tahiti Pehrson as an homage to Brion Gysin’s dream machine. When the ‘Castillo de la Esfera’ is placed on top of the record player, and as the record is played (with or without a lightbulb cantilevered in the center), thoughts are encouraged to wander.]
Mercury Rev – Bobbie Gentry’s The Delta Sweete Revisited CD/LP (Partisan)
Mercury Rev’s tribute To Bobbie Gentry’s 1968 album, The Dela Sweete, features guest contributions by Hope Sandoval, Norah Jones, Lucinda Williams, Laetitia Sadier (Stereolab), Phoebe Bridgers, Margo Price, Rachel Goswell (Slowdive), Beth Orton, Marissa Nadler, Vashti Bunyan, Kaela Sinclair, Susanne Sundfør & Carice van Houten. In October, 1967, while Gentry’s debut album Ode To Billie Joe was still in the Top Five, she began recording The Delta Sweete, a connected set of a dozen songs that extended the narrative dynamics of that single with personal reflection and set her folk-siren charisma in a richer frame of dream-state orchestration, swamp-rock guitars and big-city-R&B horns. But the album – released in March 1968, only three months after Bob Dylan’s John Wesley Harding and right as The Byrds came to Nashville to cut Sweetheart Of The Rodeo – was too soon in its precedence. The Delta Sweete, the first country-rock opera, was ignored on arrival, not even cracking Billboard’s Top 100. It was as if Billie Joe had risen out of the Tallahatchie River and thrown that record off the bridge instead. This reimagined version of Delta Sweete is her long-delayed justice – Mercury Rev’s committed and an affectionate resurrection of an album that anticipated by three decades their own pivotal expedition through transcendental America, 1998’s Deserter’s Songs.
Bob Mould – Sunshine Rock CD/LP+MP3 (Merge)
Ever-evolving artist Bob Mould – whose face belongs on the Mount Rushmore of alternative music – decided to “write to the sunshine,” as he describes it, not because he likes the current administration. It comes from a more personal place – a place found in Berlin, Germany, where he’s spent most of the last three years. Here, Mould would draw inspiration from the new environments. “‘Sunshine Rock’was such a bright, optimistic song, and once that came together, I knew that would be the title track, and that really set the tone for the direction of the album,” Mould says. The theme, the cathartic vocals, and the strings on Sunshine Rock all amount to his catchiest album since Copper Blue, the acclaimed 1992 debut of his trio Sugar. Back then, Mould’s work in Hüsker Dü, as a solo artist, and in Sugar, helped define the sound of guitar rock in the alternative age. Sunshine Rock finds him doing it again for an era that has ostensibly eschewed rock. [Limited indie-exclusive vinyl pressing also available.]
Panda Bear – Buoys CD/LP+MP3 (Domino)
From the opening minutes of Buoys, Noah Lennox’s sixth solo album as Panda Bear resembles something both wholly new and intimately familiar to fans and followers of the musician and Animal Collective member’s body of work. Lennox’s bright, sincere voice is still front-and-center, along with his beatific approach to melodic structure and vocal phrasing – but there’s miles of space surrounding it, a guitar and a few textured samples here and there fleshing out Buoys‘ dubby sparseness. The off-white loveliness of his 2011 LP Tomboy is recalled, as well as the sampledelia of 2007’s landmark Person Pitch – but Buoys otherwise represents a surprising and intimately pleasurable new direction for an artist who’s embraced not repeating oneself as its own creative ethos.
Jessica Pratt – Quiet Signs CD/LP (Mexican Summer)
Jessica Pratt is not a loud performer. She does not have to be. In a club of a few hundred, even the bar staff are known to go quiet while she’s on stage. Her third album, Quiet Signs, feels like a distillation of this power. The album leads off with “Opening Night”, a nod to Gena Rowlands’ harrowing, brilliant performance in the John Cassavetes film of the same name. It’s also an emblem of where this spare, mysterious collection of songs falls in the course of Pratt’s career. Her first album fully recorded in a professional studio setting, Quiet Signs finds Pratt’s songwriting and accompanying guitar work refined – more distinct and direct. Songs like “Fare Thee Well” and “Poly Blue” retain glimmers of Oyola’s hazy day afternoon spells, yet delicate flute, strings sustained by organ arrangements, and rehearsal room piano now gesture towards the lush chamber pop and longing of The Left Banke. On the album’s first single, “This Time Around”, Pratt hits on a profound, late-night clarity over just a couple of deep chords, evoking Caetano Veloso’s casual seaside brilliance. And before the curtain drops on Quiet Signs, Pratt provides a show-stopping closer, “Aeroplane”. [Limited indie-exclusive vinyl pressing also available.]
Mavis Staples – Live In London CD/2xLP+MP3 (ANTI-)
Recorded at London’s Union Chapel (which Mavis Staples calls “the best place in the world to sing”) and produced by the singer herself, Live In London reveals that Mavis retains astonishing power after seventy years as a performer, and that while her repertoire continues to expand, her philosophy is unchanged since her days in the groundbreaking family group, the Staple Singers.
For this project, Staples – who is still on the road almost 200 nights a year – welcomed the spontaneity and vulnerability of recording live. The album captures the spirit and energy, the commitment and intensity, that she brings to the stage every night. Ironically, her last live record – 2008’s Hope At The Hideout – was cut against the background of her fellow Chicagoan Barack Obama’s historic election, while the new album inevitably addresses the horrors of the Donald Trump era. Mixed in with these new songs (and “Let’s Do It Again”, which she notes is “the only secular song that the Staple Singers ever recorded”) are a few selections chosen just to bring the funk – Funkadelic’s “Can You Get to That” and “Slippery People” by Talking Heads.
Yak – The Pursuit Of Momentary Happiness CD/LP (Third Man)
Few albums in rock ‘n’ roll history have seen its creator’s obsession veer so close to self-destruction, as London trio Yak’s The Pursuit Of Momentary Happiness. For singer, guitarist and driving force Oli Burslem, making his band’s second album became about pursuing his artistic vision at the expense of all else, including his own financial security and mental health. Who else these days invests every single penny available to them into recording, to the point where they become homeless? The result is a rare white-knuckle ride of an album in which his extreme commitment pulsates through every moment – much like Spiritualized’s Ladies And Gentlemen We Are Floating In Space and Tame Impala’s Innerspeaker, both of whose creators had a part to play in its genesis – ranging from the gonzo-fuzz chaos of tracks like “Blinded By The Lies” through to the Roy Orbison-inspired heartbreak of “Words Fail Me”. [Limited indie-exclusive vinyl pressing also available.]
Y La Bamba – Mujeres CD/LP (Tender Loving Empire)
Y La Bamba has been many things, but at the heart of it is singer-songwriter Luz Elena Mendoza’s inquisitive sense of self. Their fifth record, Mujeres, carries on the Portland-based band’s affinity for spiritual contemplation, but goes a step further in telling a story with a full emotional spectrum. Mendoza forges new narratives from old stories of heritage and family, tracing history while forging modern Chicana feminism. The raw honesty of Mujeres is in fact the raw honesty of Mendoza. Armed with the emotionality of traditional música Mexicana and the storytelling of American folk, Y La Bamba’s artistry is not just their musical ability but Mendoza’s search for unadulterated truth. It is in an ancestral journey in which Mendoza comes to terms with the influence and limitations of her upbringing. While there is a celebration of the Mexican creativity that has informed Mendoza’s life, there is a darker side to reconcile with.
CDs + Vinyl:
Árstíðir – Árstíðir [Reissue/2009] CD/LP (Season Of Mist)
Árstíðir – Svefns Og Vöku Skil [Reissue/2011] CD/LP (Season Of Mist)
Not many bands can lay claim to the kind of dramatic career development that the Icelandic band Árstíðir can. Their music defies genre borders and might best be described as classically influenced indie folk rock.
Beast In Black – From Hell With Love CD (Nuclear Blast)
New album from the Helsinki, Finland-based metal band.
Beechwood – Trash Glamour [Reissue/2014] CD/LP (Alive)
Released in 2014 on cassette – now available on CD and vinyl. Nuggets-style true psych/rock and roll inspired by everything from Stiv Bators to the Electric Prunes to Johnny Thunders.
Bloodest Saxophone – Texas Queens 5 CD (VizzTone)
Formed in Tokyo, the jump blues & swing band, Bloodest Saxophone has been playing old-school vintage sounds since 1998. The group’s leader, Young Corn Shintaro, established the band with the ambition to rule the world with the saxophone. Over the years they have gotten together with the likes of sax icon Big Jay McNeely and vocalist Jewel Brown, and established themselves on international stages.
Bright Light Social Hour – Jude Vol. I CD/LP+MP3 (Modern Outsider)
Released last week on vinyl – now available on CD. The Bright Light Social Hour is a psychedelic rock band from Austin, Texas. Known for their incredible live shows, The Bright Light Social Hour has performed at major festivals including Lollapalooza and Austin City Limits in addition to their own international touring. They have received acclaim from KCRW and Huffington Post.
Michael Chapman – True North CD/LP (Paradise Of Bachelors)
The masterful follow-up to his universally celebrated 2017 album 50, Michael Chapman’s True North finds the elder statesman of British songwriting and guitar plumbing an even deeper deep and honing an ever-keener edge to his iconic writing. This authoritative set of predominantly new, and utterly devastating, songs hews to a more intimate sonic signature -more atmospheric, textural, and minimalist than 50, stately and melancholy in equal measure. [Limited ‘red wine’ colored vinyl pressing also available.]
Alex Chilton – From Memphis To New Orleans CD/LP (Bar/None)
Alex Chilton – Songs From Robin Hood Lane CD/LP (Bar/None)
Some know Alex Chilton as the lead singer of The Boxtops who had a number one hit in 1967 with “The Letter”, others know him from the majestic Beatlesque pop of Big Star or as the name in a song by the Replacements (“Children by the millions sing of Alex Chilton…”). Others know him as the songwriter of the theme song for That 70s Show. He was at the height of his cult star fame in the mid-1980s when he recorded the songs collected on From Memphis To New Orleans. Songs From Robin Hood Lane is a set of jazz standards he recorded in the 1990s.
DAWN – New Breed CD/LP (Local Action)
Recently released on vinyl – now available on CD. Following her acclaimed trilogy of solo albums, electronic R&B innovator DAWN (formerly Dawn Richard) returns with a new album-length project that dates back to her upbringing in New Orleans, taking in the city’s rich traditions and musical heritage. New Breed sees DAWN at her most eclectic, drawing on a wide range of influences and includes contributions from Cole M.G.N (Christine & The Queens, Ariel Pink), Kaveh Rastegar (John Legend, Sia), and Hudson Mohawke.
The Dip – The Dip Delivers CD/LP (The Dip)
Second full-length LP from the Seattle soul outfit. Vintage rhythm-and-blues combines with classic pop storytelling for an album that is simultaneously raw and polished, and perpetually danceable.
John Diva and The Rockets Of Love – Mama Said Rock Is Dead CD/LP (Steamhammer)
A flashy band in the style of the ’80s, John Diva and The Rockets Of Love carry the torch once held by Van Halen, Aerosmith, Bon Jovi, Whitesnake, Scorpions, Guns N’ Roses and Mötley Crüe.
Anton Eger – Æ CD/LP (Edition)
For over a decade, Anton Eger has made his mark in Europe as one of the most exciting and energetically virtuosic drummers on the scene. Following his captivating live performances and recordings with the likes of Phronesis and Marius Neset, Æ, his eponymous debut, is full of high-energy drumming, complexity and unpredictability, drawing on an eclectic genre-defying mix of electronica, hardcore contemporary beats and retro musical guilty pleasures.
Emarosa – Peach Club CD/LP+MP3 (Hopeless)
Sixth studio album from the alternative rockers – their most pop-laden and personal album to date.
Front Line Assembly – Wake Up The Coma CD/LP (Metropolis)
New album from electro-industrial act. A fearless leading force, Front Line Assembly provides surprising new elements, such as a cover of Falco’s “Amadeus” (feat. Jimmy Urine), & contributions from Robert Görl (DAF), Nick Holmes (Paradise Lost), & Chris Connelly (Revolting Cocks, Cocksure).
Herman Frank – Fight The Fear CD/LP (AFM)
Guitarist Herman Frank (Accept, Victory) has been an integral part of the German metal scene since the early ‘80s. [Limited translucent orange colored vinyl pressing also available.]
Goatpenis – Anesthetic Vapor [Reissue/2017] CD (Nuclear War Now)
Through its output over the past twenty-five years, Goatpenis has rightfully earned its reputation as one of the most venerable black metal bands in existence. Up for a Grammy-nomination, their 2017 album is back in-print on CD.
H.E.R. – H.E.R. [Reissue/2017] CD (RCA)
CD reissue of the enigmatic R&B singer’s Grammy-nominated 21-track compilation which comprises songs from her two prior EPs along with six new tracks, including the duet “Best Part” from Daniel Caesar’s album Freudian (2017). The six new songs were also released on a third EP, H.E.R., Vol. 2: The B-Sides.
Hajk – Drama CD/LP (Jansen Plateproduksjon)
Hajk burst onto the Norwegian scene with their acclaimed 2017 self-titled debut, garnering broad appreciation way outside of their home country. Blending analogue and digital sounds, switching between programmed arrangements and live takes from the studio, drawing on three lead vocalists and several guest musicians, Hajk continue to fulfill their creative vision with their second album, Drama.
Humble Pie – Joint Effort CD/LP (Cleopatra)
Digitally remastered lost album recorded in 1974-75 at Clear Sounds Studio with the classic line-up of Steve Marriott on guitar/vocals, Greg Ridley on bass, Dave Clempson on guitar, and Jerry Shirley on drums. [Limited colored vinyl pressing also available.]
Legion Of The Damned – Malevolent Rapture/Sons Of The Jackal [Reissue/2006/2007] 2xCD (Napalm)
Legion Of The Damned – Feel The Blade/Cult Of The Dead [Reissue/2008] 2xCD (Napalm)
The ideal moment to complete your Legion Of The Damned collection: In celebration of the bands 15th anniversary comes the reissue of the band’s first four albums as two double-disc sets –must-haves for death/thrash metal fans.
The Lemonheads – Varshons II CD/LP+MP3 (Fire)
The Lemonheads follow up the critically acclaimed Varshons from nearly ten years ago with another eclectic collection of covers. Varshons II brims with the slowly-matured vocal of Evan Dando as he lures a host of personal faves to his melodic lair.
Colin Linden & Luther Dickinson with The Tennessee Valentines – Amour CD (Stony Plain Music)
Amour is the first collaboration between famed Colin Linden (Blackie and The Rodeo Kings, ABC’s hit TV show Nashville) and Luther Dickinson (North Mississippi Allstars, Black Crowes). It is made up of a collection of classic Americana love songs featuring vocalists from Nashville.
Rebecca Loebe – Give Up Your Ghosts CD/LP (Blue Corn Music)
Rebecca Loebe is not just another talent. She’s a sophisticated, mature writer with a relevant point of view and an assured, nuanced voice that’s both elegant and earthy, powerful and delicate, with a range and depth she hints at more than flashes. When the moment’s right, however, she’ll glide up a scale like Norah Jones, or drop right into a crag in Fiona Apple’s sidewalk.
Sean McConnell – Secondhand Smoke CD/LP (Big Picnic)
13 modern folk songs. Over his career to date McConnell has written songs for Tim McGraw, Martina McBride, Brad Paisley, Rascal Flatts, Meat Loaf, David Nail, Brothers Osborne, Buddy Miller and Plain White T’s.
Prince – Musicology [Reissue/2004] CD/2xLP (Sony Legacy)
Prince – 3121 [Reissue/2006] CD/2xLP (Sony Legacy)
Prince – Planet Earth [Reissue/2006] CD/2xLP (Sony Legacy)
Digitally remastered CD and limited purple vinyl reissues now available. Musicology was the first album in five years that Prince released through a major label, having previously broken from WB and settling on his own NPG Records imprint.
Said The Whale – Cascadia CD/LP+MP3 (Arts & Crafts)
The Vancouver trio’s sixth album is a big-hearted blend of indie rock and atmospheric folk.
Sister Hazel – Fire CDEP (Croakin Poet)
New six-track EP and follow-up to their Billboard chart-topping EP, Water And Wind.
Talos – Far Out Dust CD/LP (BMG Rights Management)
While Eoin French aka Talos will always be deeply connected to his native Ireland, his stunning sophomore album, Far Out Dust, draws on a far wider perspective, melding tracks written and recorded in New York, Los Angeles, London, Dublin, Cork, and Reykjavik. The influence of the unknown runs deep here, invigorating French’s haunting blend of organic and electronic music with a gorgeous sense of discovery and wonder.
Cosey Fanni Tutti – Tutti CD/LP (Conspiracy International)
Tutti is comprised of eight soundscapes: an audio self-portrait comprising of 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. A sense of the past in relation to the present and everything in between.”
Jozef Van Wissem & Jim Jarmusch – An Attempt To Draw Aside The Veil CD/LP (Sacred Bones)
Experimental lute player Jozef Van Wissem and acclaimed film director and musician Jim Jarmusch have a working relationship that dates back to 2006, when they ran into each other on the street in New York City and quickly struck up a friendship. The mostly instrumental An Attempt To Draw Aside The Veil finds much of its power in minimalism. Van Wissem’s unadorned lute traces the outlines of subdued electronics and ominous guitar drones laid down by Jarmusch. It’s a subtle album, and repeat listens reveal vast depths in its dark corners. [Limited brown colored vinyl pressing also available.]
Various Artists – Reggae Mandela CD/LP (VP)
12 revolutionary recordings that mashed down apartheid from the likes of The Mighty Travelers, Johnny Osbourne, Yami Bolo and more.
Andrea Von Kampen – Old Country CD/LP (Andrea Von Kampen)
Nebraska-based songwriter Andrea Von Kampen has quickly established herself in the recording studio and on the road. Her deft guitar work and intuitive song construction display striking maturity, and her effortless vocal delivery has been praised by Hear Nebraska as soulful and worn-in. Andrea has shared the stage with Tall Heights, Gregory Alan Isakov, Dead Man Winter, John Moreland, Dead Horses, Ira Wolf, and more.
Worriers – Survival Pop [Reissue/2017] CD/LP (6131)
This newly expanded version of the Brooklyn punk band’s second album contains two additional songs (one previously unreleased in any form and another featuring a new mix/master) and a reworked track list. Worriers have been one of the hardest working bands over the past few years, having taken their brand of punk-meets-indie balladeering across the globe touring alongside the likes of Anti-Flag, Against Me!, Julien Baker, The Hold Steady, John K Samson & The Winter Wheat, The Wonder Years, Camp Cope, and many more.
Xiu Xiu – Girl With A Basket Of Fruit CD/LP+MP3 (Polyvinyl)
“Xiu Xiu’s new album is imbued with the agitation, tension, sorrow and anger that has permeated the daily lives of so many over the last few years. ‘Scisssssssors’ charges back into the band’s eccentric discomfort. The drums move frenzied and tribal over frontman Jamie Stewart’s possessed mutterings. It all sounds like a dark, experimental ritual.” – Stereogum. [Limited 180gm colored vinyl LP pressing also available.]
DVDs + Blu-ray:
Thelonious Monk – Straight No Chaser [Reissue/1988] DVD (Warner Archives)
Michael and Christian Blackwood’s extensive 1968 footage of modern jazz pianist/composer Thelonious Monk including the very private Monk offstage along with footage of him in the studio, on tour and behind the scenes.
This Week’s Vinyl Exclusives:
Airbag – All Rights Removed [Reissue/2011] LP (Karisma)
Limited red colored vinyl LP pressing of the second album from the Norwegian atmospheric progressive rockers.
Alone In The Woods – Alone In The Woods LP (Burning Of Witches)
Jon Dobyns and Lonn Bologna make up Alone In The Woods. Their eponymous instrumental debut features downtempo beats, ambient production and takes cues from orchestral music as well as hip-hop. Limited green colored vinyl LP pressing.
August Burns Red – Phantom Sessions 12” (Fearless)
Limited salt and pepper colored vinyl LP pressing. Comprised of songs leftover from the metalcore band’s 2017 album Phantom Anthem, Phantom Sessions includes their cover of a medley of music from The Legend Of Zelda video game franchise.
Albert Ayler and Don Cherry – Vibrations [Reissue/1965] LP (ORG Music)
Recorded in Copenhagen in September of 1964, Vibrations is the second album released by American free jazz saxophonist Albert Ayler’s quartet featuring Don Cherry, Gary Peacock and Sonny Murray. Originally issued by the Freedom label, it was also released under the alternate title, Ghosts. 180gm audiophile vinyl pressing.
Jeff Ballard – Fairgrounds LP (Edition Records)
Recently released on CD – now available on vinyl. Jeff Ballard ranks among the most inventive and adventurous drummers of his generation. He makes music that feels like the 21st century – open, fluid, ever-developing; a sound informed by jazz but truly coming to life where musical worlds collide: acoustic and electric, swinging and ambient, analogue and digital, accessible and experimental. With a rich and flexible musical language, embracing influences as diverse as jazz, rock, pop, electronica and West African music, Fairgrounds is a unique insight into his distinctive sound world.
Band Of Horses – Acoustic At The Ryman [Reissue/2014] LP+MP3 (Brown)
A 10-song virtual greatest hits set of acoustic renditions of songs from across the BOH catalog, recorded at Nashville’s legendary Ryman Auditorium over two magical nights in April 2013. Repressed on 180gm vinyl.
Danny Bensi and Saunder Jurriaans – Autopsy Of Jane Doe LP (Death Waltz)
If you haven’t seen the Autopsy Of Jane Doe please rectify that immediately. It’s a genuinely chilling tale of a father and son mortuary team who get a body delivered that is unlike any they have ever examined – an unidentified female ‘Jane Doe’. As they begin to perform the autopsy in the dead of night, they begin to uncover the story of the corpse and slow creeping dread turns to all out horror. Masterfully directed by André Øvredal, this is essential viewing for any horror fan. The score by Danny Bensi and Saunder Jurriaans is tense, brooding and a genuinely scary listen (not recommended for late nights if you want to sleep)! It’s pitch-perfect in creating mood and atmosphere one minute and letting loose into complete madness the next. Limited 180gm clear and pink colored pressing.
Billow Observatory – III: Chroma/Contour LP (Azure Vista)
III: Chroma/Contour is the third album from Billow Observatory, the collaborative project of Danish producer Jonas Munk (Manual, Ulrich Schnauss collaborator, and more) and Michigan native Jason Kolb (Auburn Lull). Blue vinyl. 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.
Bliss Signal – Bliss Signal LP (Profound Lore)
Released last October on CD – now available on vinyl. Bliss Signal, formed by James Kelly (Wife, Altar Of Plagues) and respected UK DJ/producer Mumdance, is an electronic metal band in which Kelly returns to making harsh and heavy music with a guitar for the first time since the last and final groundbreaking Altar Of Plagues album Teethed Glory & Injury. While not a direct continuation from that, the music enveloping this debut captures the vibe and essence of the more ambient and experimental moments found in Altar Of Plagues, most notably on that final album.
Bowery Electric – Lush Life [Reissue/2000] LP (Beggars Banquet)
Bowery Electric formed in late 1993 and was comprised of Lawrence Chandler and Martha Schwendener. Lushlife, their third and final album, was nearly two years in the making and took even greater strides forward from their previous releases. “Lushlife is a morphine drip of an album, so clear and precise in its smokey, sexy grooves…Bowery Electric are a distinctly New York after-hours consortium, showing up on your doorstep at 2am looking like a sad, soggy kitten, hungry for milk and more.” – The Austin Chronicle
Clarence “Gatemouth” Brown – Live From Austin TX LP (New West)
Whether playing one of his blistering blues guitar solos or teasing a country or Cajun melody out of his ever-present fiddle, Gatemouth’s versatility reflected the musical palette of his home turf – a potpourri of blues, jazz, Cajun, R&B, Texas funk and honky-tonk. Gate also borrowed heavily from the Big Band sound, and his music could swing with the best of them, as he demonstrated during his fourth and last appearance on Austin City Limits in 1996.
John Carpenter – Halloween [Original Soundtrack/Reissue/1979] LP (Sacred Bones)
For the first time, Sacred Bones Records is making the formerly mail-order exclusive art edition of John Carpenter, Cody Carpenter, and Daniel Davies’s Halloween soundtrack available to indie retail. This edition features deluxe packaging with unique art by Chris Bilheimer, as well as a massive foldout poster and is pressed on ‘blood puddle’ colored vinyl (clear vinyl with inset red puddle).
Albert Collins – Live From Austin TX LP (New West)
They called him the The Ice Man and The Master of the Telecaster, but above all else, Albert Collins was a consummate Texas bluesman and entertainer. He was on fire the night of his Austin City Limits performance on October 28th, 1991.
Chick Corea – Now He Sings, Now He Sobs [Reissue/1968] LP (Blue Note)
Chick’s brilliant trio album from 1968, Now He Sings, Now He Sobs, is held in the same kind of rarefied esteem as the classic Bill Evans trio sessions. One listen will tell you why… The exquisite interplay between Chick, Czech bassist Miroslav Vitous and drum master Roy Haynes make it abundantly clear why this album has achieved such legendary status among jazz piano trio recordings. 180gm audiophile vinyl pressing.
Def Leppard – The Story So Far – The Best Of 2xLP (Mercury)
Def Leppard’s 2018 greatest hits album is now available as a standard double-vinyl pressing.
Richard Einhorn – The Prowler [OST] LP (Waxwork)
Limited double 180gm green with red splatter colored vinyl pressing. Released in 1981, The Prowler is one of the earliest films to become part of the American-Slasher genre. The film’s music by Richard Einhorn (Shock Waves, Don’t Go In The House) introduces the composer’s departure from the primitive, monophonic synth scoring of his earlier work, and implements a blend of orchestral cues and mature electronic soundscapes.
Fog Window – Fog Window LP (Sympathy For The Record Industry)
Gary Panter, Emmy award-winning designer of Pee Wee’s Playhouse, RAW magazine’s quintessential punk cartoonist and author/creator of Jimbo & Daltokyo, reveals Fog Window, a dreamy and lysergic landscape containing a multitude of textures and tones at every turn, resulting in a very colorful and intimate musical journey.
Lukas Graham – 3 (The Purple Album) LP (WB)
Released last October on CD – now available on vinyl. New album from the Danish soul-pop band. Easy pop hooks alongside soul-baring poignancy.
Khana Bierbood – Strangers From The Far East LP (GuruGuru Brain)
Recently released on CD – now available on vinyl. Khana Bierbood (translated as Strange Brew in Thai), formed in 2012 in Bangsaen Beach, Thailand. After hours of jamming together they started creating their unique sound influenced by ‘60s surf music, ‘70s garage rock and Thai traditional music.
Kid Rock – Greatest Hits You Never Saw Coming 2xLP (WB)
Released last September on CD – now available on vinyl. Comprised of fifteen remastered tracks, all recorded since 1998, Greatest Hits You Never Saw Coming reflects 20 years of cross-genre hits from the superstar during his Warner Music Group era. The tracklist plays out like the ultimate Kid Rock set, reflecting his indelible imprint on rock, country, pop, and hip-hop.
LCD Soundsystem – Electric Lady Sessions 2xLP (Sony)
Recorded at the famed Electric Lady Studios in NYC’s Greenwich Village, Electric Lady Sessions is a live collection featuring classic LCD Soundsystem songs, three covers, and newer material from their 2017 album American Dream.
Julie London – Julie Is Her Name 1 [Reissue/1955] 2xLP (Analogue Productions)
Sultry singer/actress Julie London’s recording career was launched on the silver screen in the 1940s and in 1955 she made her debut album proper on the newly formed Liberty Records. Recorded in August of that same year, in state-of-the-art mono sound with Barney Kessel on guitar and Ray Leatherwood on bass, the first of two Julie Is Her Name installments is regarded by jazz buffs and ’50s pop enthusiasts alike as a genuine classic. Mono 200gm 45rpm double LP pressing.
Månegarm – Urminnes Hävd – The Forest Sessions [Reissue/2006] LP (Black Lodge)
First-time on vinyl. Månegarm is a Swedish Viking/black metal band from Norrtälje. Urminnes Hävd is an EP of purely folk music.
Meat Loaf – Bat Out Of Hell II: Back Into Hell [Reissue/1993] 2xLP (Sony)
Meat Loaf – Welcome To The Neighborhood [Reissue/1995] 2LP (Sony)
Vinyl reissues of Michael Lee Aday’s sixth and seventh albums. The original release of Bat Out Of Hell II returned Meat Loaf to the top of the charts, fueled by its Grammy-winning smash single, “I’d Do Anything For Love (But I Won’t Do That)”.
Kevin Morby – Harlem River Dub (Peaking Lights Remix) 12” (Woodsist)
Two extended Harlem River Dub remixes by Aaron Coyes aka Peaking Lights.
Motörhead – England 1978 LP (Cleopatra)
Limited edition red vinyl pressing of Motörhead’s 1978 live album.
Emile Normand – Emile Normand LP (Majik Bus Entertainment)
Limited 180gm vinyl LP pressing. This soul meets spiritual jazz album by vibes and marimba master Emile Normand is a super rare treat. Recorded in 1968 only for internal use on CBC radio stations and never released commercially until now, the LP features super covers of Yusef Lateef, Horace Silver and Jorge Ben.
Rita Ora – Phoenix LP (WB)
Released last November on CD – now available on vinyl. Second studio album from the British vocalist.
ORB – The Space Between LP (ATO)
The third full-length album from the Australian progressive and psychedelic heavy rock pilots. Limited colored vinyl LP pressing.
Queen – Bohemian Rhapsody [Soundtrack] 2xLP (Hollywood)
Released last October on CD – now available on vinyl. Audio tracks from Queen’s legendary performance at Live Aid are included as part of the soundtrack album to the Grammy-nominated biopic. Recorded at the historic Wembley concert in July 1985, these Live Aid songs are among the rare gems and unheard versions from the band’s rich catalogue. Alongside the show-stopping Live Aid performances of “Bohemian Rhapsody”, “Radio Ga Ga”, “Hammer To Fall” and “We Are The Champions”, the album features other rare live tracks spanning Queen’s entire career, new versions of old favorites, and a choice selection of the band’s finest studio recordings, among them some of Queen’s biggest hits.
Razorlight – Up All Night [Reissue/2004] LP+MP3 (Motown)
Razorlight – Razorlight [Reissue/2660] LP+MP3 (Motown)
180gm vinyl reissues of the English indie rock band’s first two albums.
The Relentless – American Satan [Original Motion Picture Soundtrack] LP (Sumerian)
Released last October on CD – now available on vinyl. From the mind of Ash Avildsen (founder of Sumerian Records), American Satan is a film Matt Pinfield says is “a must see for any true rock fan.” The soundtrack features material from Korn’s Jonathan Davis, Crosses, The Pretty Reckless, Deftones, Circa Survive, Skid Row and The Dillinger Escape Plan among many more.
Rose Tattoo – Scarred For Live – 1980-1992 LP (Cleopatra)
Limited edition white vinyl companion to the monster box set of unreleased live material from the Australian gods of hard rock.
Wayne Shorter – Etcetera [Reissue/1980] LP (Blue Note)
Limited 180gm vinyl LP pressing. Recorded on June 14, 1965 at the Van Gelder Studio, Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey, Etcetera was not released on Blue Note until 1980. The band features Cecil McBee (bass), Joe Chambers (drums), Herbie Hancock (piano), and Wayne Shorter (tenor saxophone).
Soul Asylum – Say What You Will… [Reissue/1984] LP (Omnivore)
Soul Asylum – While You Were Out [Reissue/1986] LP (Omnivore)
Soul Asylum – Made To Be Broken [Reissue/1986] LP (Omnivore)
Soul Asylum – Clam Dip & Other Delights [Reissue/1988] LP (Omnivore)
Soul Asylum – Twin/Tone Extras LP (Omnivore)
Soul Asylum first hit the Minneapolis music scene in early 1981 and stood out immediately because of their work ethic and smart, punky hard rock sound. On the heels of their recent expanded CD reissues, the band’s Twin/Tone discography is back in-print on vinyl. Twin/Tone Extras is a new vinyl compilation featuring tracks from early Soul Asylum (then known as Loud Fast Rules) and select bonus tracks from the CD reissues.
Thin White Rope – The Ruby Sea [Reissue/1991] LP (Frontier)
On their 1991 album The Ruby Sea, Thin White Rope honed their unique blend, of punk, country and rock into a deeply satisfying record that at times has a ferocious intensity, punctuated by a stark and lonely widescreen sentimentality.
Twin Peaks – Sweet ’17 Singles 12” (Grand Jury)
Throughout the second half of 2017, Chicago’s Twin Peaks released a run of a half dozen limited-edition 7” singles the band affectionately dubbed Sweet ’17. Only 300 copies of each 7” were made, and subscriptions sold-out almost immediately. Due to popular demand, Twin Peaks have compiled all the songs from the series onto a 12”.
Undantagsfolk – Den Ondes Fingrar 7” (Nordvis Produktion)
Limited white colored 7”. Undantagsfolk is a duo from Västra Götaland, Sweden. Their barren folk music, based on arcane tales originating from rural Sweden, is performed on harmonium and nylon stringed guitars interwoven with ambient vocal harmonies.
Vangelis – Nocturne (The Piano Album) 2xLP (Decca)
Recently released on CD – now available on vinyl. Fascinated by space and having previously collaborated with NASA, Vangelis, the godfather of electronic music, releases a new album inspired by nighttime, along with solo piano versions of his best-loved hits, including the Chariots Of Fire and Blade Runner themes. Tracks will be released at nightfall throughout the winter, tying in with moon cycles and key events in the astronomical calendar.
Tony Joe White – Home Made Ice Cream [Reissue/1973] 2xLP (Analogue Productions)
You may or may not be overly familiar with Tony Joe White, but should know his two most famous songs – “Polk Salad Annie” and “Rainy Night In Georgia”. Homemade Ice Cream is up to the standards of those great numbers. So soulful, humid, rich and textured. Or as Tony Joe would say, “It’s swampy”. Homemade Ice Cream was originally released in 1973 on Warner Bros. and was co-produced by White and legendary Atlantic producer Tom Dowd. This is very much a back porch acoustic affair. 200gm 45rpm double LP pressing.
Nick Zammuto – We The Animals [OST] LP+MP3 (Temporary Residence)
We The Animals is the award-winning new film from Jeremiah Zagar (In A Dream). Based on the best-selling novel by Justin Torres, We The Animals is Zagar’s first narrative feature. It reunites Zagar with Nick Zammuto, the renowned composer and co-founder of beloved collage-pop pioneers, the Books. Inspired by the film’s setting in rural upstate New York – and influenced by the early ambient electronic music that galvanized the Books two decades ago – Zammuto pairs that earthen, wooded isolation with dynamic pulses of customized electronics and sparse, crystalline layers of melodic soft synths.