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A Place To Bury Strangers Vinyl Records
PinnedA couple of years ago, A Place to Bury Strangers were in search of a new drummer. Lia Simone Braswell, an L.A. native, had recently moved to New York, and was playing drums in shows around Brooklyn “just to keep her chops up.” As it turned out, APTBS bassist Dion Lunadon caught one of those shows and, after seeing her play, was moved to ask her if she’d want to come to a band practice sometime.
For well over a decade now, A Place to Bury Strangers—Lunadon, founding guitarist/singer Oliver Ackermann, and, officially, Lia Braswell—have become well known for their unwavering commitment to unpredictable, often bewildering live shows, and total, some might say dangerous volume.
This April marks the release of Pinned, their fifth full-length and an album that finds them converting difficult moments into some of their most urgent work to date. It’s their first since the 2016 election, and their first since the 2014 closing of Death By Audio, the beloved Brooklyn DIY space where Ackermann lived, worked, and created with complete freedom.
There are searing meditations on truth and government-led conspiracies (“Execution”), as well as haunting, harmonized responses to the tensions of our current political climate (“There’s Only One of Us”). It all opens with “Never Coming Back,” a frightening crescendo of group vocals, vertiginous guitar work, and Lunadon’s unrelenting bass. It’s a clear and honest statement of intent, not just for everything that follows, but for this band as a whole.1. Never Coming Back
3. There's Only One Of Us
4. Situations Changes
5. Too Tough To Kill
6. Frustrated Operator
7. Look Me In The Eye
8. Was It Electric
9. I Know I've Done Bad Things
10. Act Your Age
$19.99Vinyl LP - SealedBuy Now
Exploding HeadExploding Head is A Place To Bury Strangers' sophomore album and first for Mute. The band had one simple goal during the recording process: The original idea, says vocalist/guitarist Oliver Ackermann, was to create the craziest, most f'ed-up recording ever.
In late 2008, shortly following a support slot on MGMT's U.K. tour, APTBS began tracking new songs at Death By Audio, the rehearsal/recording/living space that Ackermann helped build in 2005. The DIY-or-die building is also an independent venue and the headquarters of Ackermann's Death By Audio company, a customized guitar pedal manufacturer that counts U2, TV on the Radio and My Bloody Valentine among its many happy customers.
During the Exploding Head recording process engineer Andy Smith (Paul Simon, David Bowie) took the band to a whole other level says Ackermann. I love the interplay and contrasts between something that's pretty and something that's scary, he explains. Taking listeners to different places, even in one song, is so important, whether it makes them cry or pissed off. If you listen closely, some of the riffs on this record are actually like Ramones songs or '60s bubblegum pop.1. It Is Nothing
2. In Your Heart
3. Lost Feeling
5. Keep Slipping Away
6. Ego Death
7. Smile When You Smile
8. Everything Always Goes Wrong
9. Exploding Head
10. I Live My Life to Stand in the Shadow of Your Heart
$20.99Vinyl LP - SealedBuy Now
TransfixiationLimited To 2,000 Copies Worldwide
"[A Place to Bury Strangers] sculpts something unexpectedly elegant out of the type of din you'd expect to hear on an airport tarmac" - SPIN MAGAZINE
"Hypnotic and forward-looking, A Place to Bury Strangers sound more vital than ever”- ALLMUSIC
"A real sonic adventure that never relinquishes its grip on structure, despite the fact that the guitar effects pedals are practically stomped into the floor"- POPMATTERS
"That's the most intense fear and feeling—when you go to a show and you're actually scared," says Oliver Ackermann, guitarist and frontman of Brooklyn trio A Place To Bury Strangers.
"Or you can palpably feel the danger in the music," adds bassit Dion Lunadon, "Like it's going to fall apart at any moment and the players doing it are so in the moment they don't give a shit about anything else. They're just going for it. It's a gutter kinda vibe; everything about it is icky and evil and dangerous."
The same could be said the band’s fourth album, Transfixiation. Rather than fixate on the minute details like they may have done in the past, the group, rounded out by drummer Robi Gonzalez, trust their instincts and try to keep things as pure as possible. Music is much more exhilarating when it's unpredictable even on repeat plays, and this is very much an unpredictable record. Gonzalez makes his recording debut with the band here, and it’s obvious that he’s helped pushed the band’s recordings closer to the level of their infamous live shows.
"The one thing we have in common is this fire when we're playing," adds Gonzalez. "I don't know; it's real intense."1. Supermaster
3. Love High
4. What We Don't See
6. Lower Zone
7. We've Come So Far
8. Now It's Over
9. I'm So Clean
10. Fill The Void
11. I Will Die
$18.99Vinyl LP - SealedBuy Now
Onwards To The WallWithout any official testing, Dead Oceans can safely say that the master recording for Onwards to the Wall is the loudest one ever submitted to the label for approval. Usually, they crank the volume to catch any digital pops or hisses that may foil a master. But this one they actually had to, ashamedly, put at half volume. This thing is pummeling. Theres no other way to capture the music of A Place To Bury Strangers than just beyond the boundary of whats considered properly loud. Produced, engineered, mixed and mastered by APTBS themselves, this is the sound of a band in control of making out of control music.
Onwards to the Wall packs every bit of the searing sonic maelstrom listeners have come to expect from APTBS. Yet, the adroit songcraft thats always been there is brought more to the fore, pop hooks are repurposed and more instantly recognizable. Now joined by bassist Dion Lunadon, formerly of The D4, Ackerman has found a crucial companion in pulling timeless melodies from their jet engine textures. Standout So Far Away takes all the pure pop perfection of The Box Tops The Letter and shoots it through with a barely-harnessed dark energy and snarling propulsion. The title track carries a similar balance of classic, '60s-pop hooks and doomed-out vibes, employing a boy-girl vocal trade-off thats at once both sexy and menacing.
Onwards to the Wall is a fresh, complete artistic statement from A Place To Bury Strangers . Its a new chapter, a prelude for what awaits us on the horizon. It is a taste of greatness to come.1. I Lost You
2. So Far Away
3. Onwards To The Wall
4. Nothing Will Surprise Me
5. Drill It Up
$13.99Vinyl LP - SealedBuy Now
WorshipGuitars as jet engines; guitars as haunted electronics; guitars as filling-melting white heat: A Place To Bury Strangers' new album Worship is explosive, visceral, and dark. APTBS' DIY-braintrust of Death By Audio wizard Oliver Ackermann and bassist Dion Lunadon continue the evolution of songwriting that began with Onwards to the Wall, the band's 2011 EP.
Now on Worship, they interweave threads of krautrock, dream-pop, and '80s goth without ever losing the edge that is quintessentially A Place To Bury Strangers. Unhinged dissonance is artfully framed within a fiercely dynamic and assured melodic sensibility. Standout "You Are The One" is a coldwave white squall, with Ackerman coming through like an austere and menacing Damo Suzuki. Later on "Dissolved," the band methodically builds an atmospheric battle charge only to take a hard left mid-song into pure, shimmering Cure territory. There are ambitious, trend-bucking choices at every turn.
"This album was written, recorded, mixed and mastered by A Place To Bury Strangers. It is our vision of what our music should sound like in 2012, not someone else's interpretation," says Lunadon. "Every sound on the album is made by us and our tools; tools created by us, used on no other recordings, and purposefully built for this project. This is real. Some of it is the band being in complete control; bending, shaping and building the songs and the sounds. Other parts are the band relinquishing control and letting the songs and sounds take over and produce themselves.We are not trying to reinvent ourselves, but simply push ourselves further in all aspects of our music."
"We made this, we recorded this, we did everything," adds Ackerman. "Yes, we chose to do this and no, we didn't have to but we think it is pretty cool. No producer made us. We didn't go to school for any of this and we don't have time for tutorials. We invented this and now we are sharing it with you."1. Alone
2. You Are The One
3. Mind Control
6. Why I Can't Cry Anymore
9. And I'm Up
11. Leaving Tomorrow
12. On Every Page
$18.99Vinyl LP - SealedBuy Now