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Hard Days Night'
MTV Unplugged - Summer SolsticeIn the land of the midnight sun, the clocks tick slightly different than they do elsewhere. This is especially true during the summer solstice, when the sun hardly sets at all, bathing the small Norwegian island of Giske - where a-ha played their first ever two acoustic concerts - in an eerie twilight.
Giske is a tiny island in close proximity to the city of Ålesund on the shore of the North Atlantic Ocean - a popular city much frequented by day trippers arriving on huge cruise ships during Norway's short yet intense summer season. But a-ha's audience didn't get to Giske on such boats. Coming from destinations all over the world, for them getting to Giske meant embarking on a plane to Oslo and from there to Ålesund. And from there you finally have to drive through a series of seemingly endless and frighteningly deep undersea tunnels to reach Giske, an island so beautiful and, well, remote, that one immediately wonders why a-ha handpicked this specific location to play their long awaited first MTV Unplugged shows on the night of the 2017 summer solstice, right where the world seems to end.
Pål Waaktaar-Savoy: "Choosing Giske is like most of the things we do: It's been 50% chance and 50% planned. We were discussing many different places to play these special shows - among them Manaus in the Amazon jungle, Berlin, London and New York. At the end of the day it was the Ocean Sound Recordings studio in Giske that made the difference. We knew that we could rehearse undisturbed in an extremely good sounding facility."
a-ha booked the Ocean Sound Recordings studio, which looks out onto the ocean, to revisit their own back catalogue for two weeks together with producer Lars Horntveth, who had already been working on the acoustic arrangements for more than half a year. The nearby Øygardshallen (Giske Harbour Hall) turned out to be the perfect venue to stage their two first ever acoustic shows: They simply had to lay cables from A to B and then were able to use the studio at Ocean Sound Recordings to capture the shows perfectly. a-ha performed in front of an audience of just 250 people - the Øygardshallen's glass front allowed the audience to gaze out into the pale night and onto a number of LED video steles that had been set up behind the band, serving as a minimalist backdrop to the concert. Suffice to say, the concerts were sold-out within minutes, as a-ha were to play "concerts so close to our audience like never before". As Magne Furuholmen puts it: "These were by far the most intimate concerts we've ever given."
Yet the beauty of the North Atlantic Ocean, the light of the midnight sun and the exclusivity of the concerts are only one half of the story. The other half is that the idea of a-ha playing their vast catalogue of world hits stripped down to their very essence is indeed a promising endeavor.
Pål: "We've talked about this idea for so many years. And in many of our concerts we've also played some acoustic songs. But if you consider that we don't use much technology at all when we write the songs, the idea an entirely acoustic show makes total sense. Playing all these songs now in their acoustic versions is like returning to their origins."
Magne expands the thought in a more universal direction: "Most of our songs draw inspiration from a childhood directly exposed to Norwegian culture, even the folk music tradition, perhaps more so than we thought. We were constantly faced with questions from journalists implying how our 'Norwgian-ness' was a unique part of our sound, even though we lived and worked in London.
As a creative person it is almost easier to tap into this nordic mindest from a distance. History is full of good examples of how iconic Norwegians in the past did their best work away from home; The writer Henrik Ibsen wrote on universal topics with a strong Norwegian tone while living in Italy, Edvard Munch's melancholic force defined expressionism while living in Berlin - yet he simply couldn't be from anywhere but this country. And of course there is Edvard Grieg, who took a lot of inspiration directly from folk music. His music always felt particularly resonant in our ears growing up. With such strong figures and influences defining what it is to be a Norwegian, it becomes part of what you are. Our darker, melancholic streak definitely harks back to these early influences. We feel connected to all that, which is why we thought returning home for this project was a very natural step.
Morten Harket stresses the fact how crucial it was to have arranger/producer Lars Horntveth on board as a catalyst and fearlessly driving force behind the scenes: "He confronted our music by presenting completely new arrangements, also taking out 'untouchable' parts, which easily came across as being disrespectful. I say this as a compliment, by the way... And of course we hated it! But we also needed it! This was exactly what we had asked of him. We needed someone who would boldly question everything that we stood for as a band - someone who could stand up to us. Of course it led to shouting matches. It's part of the creative process. Lars deserves the credit for bringing the band closer together than we have been for a very long time."
For the MTV Unplugged shows, a-ha played 17 songs in completely new arrangements as well as two new songs and two cover versions on vintage acoustic instruments, accompanied by a backing band featuring Karl Oluf Wennerberg on drums, Even Ormestad on acoustic bass, Morten Qvenild on piano and various acoustic keyboards, Lars Horntveth on multiple instruments and Madeleine Ossum on violin and vocals, Tove Margrethe Erikstad on cello and Emilie Heldal Lidsheim on viola and backing vocals. Furthermore, a total of four guest stars served as duet partners for Morten Harket. Most notably, Echo & The Bunnymen's Ian McCulloch had been invited by Magne Furuholmen to sing "Scoundrel Days" and Ian's very own "The Killing Moon" on the first of the two shows. On the second night, a-ha were joined by Alison Moyet of Yazoo fame to duet with Morten on "Summer Moved On". Highasakite's Ingrid Helene Håvik guested on "The Sun Always Shines on TV" on both nights, while, last but not least, American singer Lissie did the same on "I've Been Losing You".
"In the cacophonic world of popular music, with its high-impact effects and productions, the music is often somewhat lost as it ends up being premeditated." Morten Harket addresses the subject of subtlety: "The world of pop is a world where everything always has to be more than anything else."
Attending the concerts and the last full day of the rehearsals, you could tell that the whole group and especially Morten did indeed try to reveal the soul of each and every song performed. During the last run-through on the day before the first night the band took things extremely seriously. Songs were started, stopped and deconstructed. Discussions between Morten and the group as well as with the recording engineers dealt with the tiniest details of sound, cohesiveness and attitude. As a result, the two shows benefited profoundly, both in terms of microstructure (the new arrangements reveal so much of the songs' essences), as well as in that the overall dramaturgic arc of the concerts, which steadily built towards a climax that would astound even the most dedicated follower of the group. During the encore, a-ha would play - "as usual" - their first and biggest hit to date, "Take On Me". But an unexpected chord change in the chorus and the skeletal arrangement not only allowed a new perspective on the song's lyrics, it also left the audience with tears in their eyes.
Magne: "When you rearrange songs for an acoustic rendition it is also an opportunity to do more than to just simplify them. I especially like what happened when we took a fresh look at Take on me, which went from being an uptempo syntheziser-driven popsong to a much more melancholic, yearning ballad in this slowed down arrangement, it shows with much more clarity how the song at its core is not some standalone upbeat track, but belongs squarely inside our catalogue alongside more thoughtful, darker songs like scoundrel days etc.
There are only a few bands in the world who can look back on similarly close ties with the music channel MTV as a-ha. Alongside the likes of Duran Duran and Yello, in 1985 a-ha were worldwide pioneers who immediately understood the power of the music video as both a narrative and commercial tool. Steve Barron's classic "Take On Me" clip is still a milestone of music video and in 2003 was voted by the MTV audience as one of the top ten best videos ever made. There have long been efforts by a-ha and MTV to organize an Unplugged concert.
The fact that the two MTV Unplugged concerts in June 2017 actually took place on Giske also left a deep impression on a-ha themselves. Like every other band that has been successful on a worldwide scale for over three decades, a-ha have had their share of problems, split-ups and re-unifications. A thoughtful Magne reflects: "After such a long time, a-ha have now become a band that simply continues from project to project. This turned out to be a very healthy approach for the three of us, because going acoustic also had the taste of a new project."
Pål: "When we recorded our last few albums, we were sometimes working pretty isolated from each other. We should do this again - sitting and recording in the same room together for a couple of weeks or months and see what comes out as a result. We may argue about a lot of things, but we are also a band that has very close ties."
After the closing applause that seemed would never end, the band left the stage and walked out of Øygardshallen into the living daylights. Having performed two triumphant concerts together, the three band mates climbed into three separate vehicles and headed off into the sunlit night. But everybody in the audience had a feeling that a-ha had now just opened a brand new chapter in their unparalleled career. To quote a line from one of the highlights of these unplugged shows: "Cause I've been told / Stay on these roads / We shall meet, I know."
-Max DaxLP 1
1. This Is Our Home (Live from MTV Unplugged, Giske / 2017)
2. Lifelines (Live from MTV Unplugged, Giske / 2017)
3. I've Been Losing You (Live from MTV Unplugged, Giske / 2017)
4. Analogue (All I Want) (Live from MTV Unplugged, Giske / 2017 / LP Edit)
5. The Sun Always Shines on TV (Live from MTV Unplugged, Giske / 2017 / LP Edit)
6. A Break in the Clouds (Live from MTV Unplugged, Giske / 2017)
7. Foot of the Mountain (Live from MTV Unplugged, Giske / 2017 / LP Edit)
1. Stay on These Roads (Live from MTV Unplugged, Giske / 2017 / LP Edit)
2. This Alone Is Love (Live from MTV Unplugged, Giske / 2017)
3. Over the Treetops (Live from MTV Unplugged, Giske / 2017)
4. Forever Not Yours (Live from MTV Unplugged, Giske / 2017 / LP Edit)
5. Sox of the Fox (Live from MTV Unplugged, Giske / 2017 / LP Edit)
6. Scoundrel Days (Live from MTV Unplugged, Giske / 2017)
7. The Killing Moon (Live from MTV Unplugged, Giske / 2017 / LP Edit)
1. Summer Moved on (Live from MTV Unplugged, Giske / 2017 / LP Edit)
2. Memorial Beach (Live from MTV Unplugged, Giske / 2017 / LP Edit)
3. Living a Boy's Adventure Tale (Live from MTV Unplugged, Giske / 2017)
4. Manhattan Skyline (Live from MTV Unplugged, Giske / 2017 / LP Edit)
5. The Living Daylights (Live from MTV Unplugged, Giske / 2017 / LP Edit)
6. Hunting High and Low (Live from MTV Unplugged, Giske / 2017)
7. Ake on Me (Live from MTV Unplugged, Giske / 2017)$45.99Vinyl LP - 3 LPs Sealed Buy Now
A Hard Days Night (Awaiting Repress)Ranked 388/500 on Rolling Stone Magazine's 500 Greatest Albums of All Time.
Pressed on 180g Vinyl
Cut from the original master tapes at Abbey Road Studios!
And for the first time, the North American LP debut in stereo
A Hard Days Night is the 3rd studio album from The Beatles and was accompanied by a film of the same name. This album really showcases the bands Rock and Roll instrumentation and song structure and also spawned some of their most famous songs, A Hard Days Night, with its pulse pounding and recognizable opening chord, to the previously released "Can't Buy Me Love" .
The album is a landmark for the band seeing as how it is the first Beatles record to feature all original songs, some of which ended up on the movie of the same name. With Lennon handling most of the songwriting doing a total of ten out of the thirteen tracks, this is also one of 3 albums to not feature a Ringo Lead song. The album is also considered as opening up the flood gates for more British rockers like the Rolling Stones and The Kinks to sweep there way to the U.S.
A team consisting of some of the best producers and engineers in the recording industry were brought together and would spend 4 long years mixing and mastering with some of the most state of the art recording equipment. Treating these records much like a science experiment, engineers ran extensive tests before copying the analog master tapes over into a digital format using 24-bit/192 kHz resolution, and carefully removing clicks, vocal pops and poor edits. Never altering the original songs themselves, just polishing them up a bit.1. A Hard Day's Night
2. I Should Have Known Better
3. If I Fell
4. I'm Happy Just To Dance With You
5. And I Love Her
6. Tell Me Why
7. Can't Buy Me Love
8. Any Time At All
9. I'll Cry Instead
10. Things We Said Today
12. When I Get Home
13. You Can't Do That
14. I'll Be Back$22.99180 Gram Audiophile Virgin Vinyl LP - Sealed AWAITING REPRESS Buy Now
REDD-PRO-5945xJason Boland & The Stragglers
Hard Times Are RelativeOur favorite songs are like one-night stands: passionate or sad, capable of recalling moments with Proustian power. Our favorite artists are lifelong companions: fixtures we turn to for comfort and highs.
Over the last two decades, Jason Boland and the Stragglers have delivered and become both.
"We've always just wanted to entertain ourselves and put out music that would be a part of people's lives, not just something passing to them," says Boland. "We want to be something more monolithic." He pauses and grins as he adds, "We're just a social experiment at this point."
Boland is talking about the deep body of work he's created with his band of jangly honky-tonk aces, the Stragglers--Grant Tracy on bass; drummer and background vocalist Brad Rice; Nick Worley on fiddle, mandolin, and harmonies; and Cody Angel on guitar and pedal steel. Fronted and co-founded by Boland with Tracy and Rice, the band has featured only a handful of other members over the last 20 years, all of whom--whether they're currently Stragglers or not--are like brothers. As they've independently sold more than half a million albums, the outfit has packed iconic dancehalls, theaters, and other big rooms across the country.
With their new record Hard Times are Relative, Boland and the Stragglers stack the smart, road-ready outlaw country longtime fans have come to expect alongside creative risks that flirt with punk and psychedelic sounds. The 10-song collection is a rare blend of instantly gratifying and rewarding of closer listens--a definitively Stragglers accomplishment. "It's an upbeat album--a lot of fast songs, but it doesn't try to be fast," Boland says with characteristic insight. "It just sits in the pocket."
No one has combined Woody Guthrie's conscience with Waylon Jenning's panache quite like Boland and the Stragglers. Since debuting in 1999 with the Lloyd Maines-produced Pearl Snaps, the band has matured without taming their refreshing irreverence. "We always joke that we try to take as much as we can from Lloyd and apply it to producing our own records," Boland says. "We've worked with him so many times. The most obvious thing he taught us is: just be musical. Don't hammer through the songs like a garage band all the time."
That mix of subtle musical sophistication and unruly Oklahoma junkyard pedigree has resulted in some of the best independent honky tonk in recent memory. "You just have to be where you are--keep plugging away and doing the best you can at any moment," Boland says, reflecting on their career thus far. "For a bunch of slackers [like us], that's not too terribly tough."
Co-produced by the Stragglers, David Percefull, and Adam Odor, Hard Times are Relative is the band's ninth studio record. All songs were recorded live to tape and without the use of any computers--now a Stragglers' hallmark. Upbeat steel guitar kicks off album opener "I Don't Deserve You" before Boland's signature baritone thunders in, smooth and stronger than ever. When fellow sly honky-tonk champ Sunny Sweeney joins him in out-front harmonies, the two become the rootsy dream team you never knew you always wanted.
The album's title track is a masterpiece: an epic story song about a young orphaned brother and sister depending on the land and one another. Rich details layered over strings paint a scene that's compelling and lush. The song has become one of Boland's favorites. "Folk music is hard to write. Country music is hard to write," he says, reflecting on the difficulty of spinning a long tale while keeping it simple and engaging. "When you hit your own little tuning fork in your head, that one is a hard sell, even to me. But I enjoy that song."
"Right Where I Began" sounds like vintage Stragglers: clever wordplay and muscly guitars ready for two-steppers. Fiddle and vocal showcase "Searching for You" shows off Rice's and Worley's harmonies that are downright divine. Crunchy guitars drive "Dee Dee OD'd" as Boland offers another round of wry observations. Easy gem "Going Going Gone" makes a solid argument for fiddle in rock-and-roll as Boland deftly turns a baseball metaphor into a classic leaving song.
Gorgeous waltz "Do You Remember When" bemoans some of modern life's emphasis on disposability and the dismissal of heritage. Rollicking "Tattoo of a Bruise" picks up the same idea, and is tongue-in-cheek country doo-wop, fueled by fiddle, steel, and drums. "I'm not judging anybody," Boland clarifies. "Our music has always called it like we see it, right or wrong, smarter or dumber."
Praise for the past but acknowledgement of nostalgia's limitations is a career-long theme for Boland, and one that this record continues to carry. "We don't want to lose the chili recipes and the Schroeder Halls because people are moving on to faster, louder, and newer," he says. "But instead of just hemming and hawing, remembering what's old and gone, we want to have new experiences within those frameworks--make memories with what's left of the good stuff."
With lines like "Empty pockets don't mean you need money / It's just another place to put your hands / And focus on that rock you've been kicking / One day it's going to be a grain of sand," "Predestined" challenges listeners as it soothes. The song is a lyrical victory for Boland, who's long-since become a master of distilling heady ideas into digestible nuggets.
Penned by Oklahoma music godfather Randy Crouch, "Grandfather's Theme" serves as the album's climactic closer. Attacked with psychedelic ferocity by the band, the song picks up the record's recurring concepts of the ground's insistence on shifting, inevitability, and our complex relationship with the past. Stripped down as Boland sings, the song soars off into a trippy, robust jam-band send-off--a serious triumph especially considering it's a defiantly analog recording. "We're fighting the digital world because they can make it so huge," Boland says, discussing the balancing act of filling out songs while letting them breathe. "I'm really proud if what we did."
As he mulls over where the Stragglers have been and where they're headed, Boland comes back to one idea over and over again: he and his band are who they are, and with that genuineness comes grit, beauty, and staying power. "We're fortunate that we're not trying to fool anybody," he says. "That's what it comes down to. We're all loners but somehow a team. Now that I can look at it all, I can see: it's been fun."
Here's to the next 20 years.1. I Don't Deserve You
2. Hard Times Are Relative
3. Right Where I Began
4. Searching For You
5. Do You Remember When
6. Dee Dee OD'd
7. Going Going Gone
8. Tattoo of a Bruise
10. Grandfather's Theme$18.99Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
Saturday Night WristThe Deftones' 2006 full-length Saturday Night Wrist is the band's fifth overall and first since their eponymous 2003 self-titled album. Produced by Bob Ezrin (Pink Floyd, Alice Cooper, Kiss, Jane's Addiction) and former Far guitarist Shaun Lopez, Saturday Night Wrist is bombastic yet vulnerable, aggressive yet thoughtful, combinations that have made the Deftones among the most respected and acclaimed bands in hard rock. Lead singer Chino Moreno considers Saturday Night Wrist, The most diverse record we've done.1. Hole In The Earth
4. Cherry Waves
9. Pink Cellphone
12. Rivière$19.99Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
Perdition Hymns (Discontinued)Since 2008, Night Horse has caught the ears of critics and fans with their unique ability to blend the classic sounds of hard rock and blues with a much needed breath of contemporary fresh air. Now they return with their highly anticipated sophomore effort Perdition Hymns, produced and mixed by Matt Bayles (Pearl Jam, Mastodon, The Sword). Perdition Hymns is a patent demonstration of a group that has quickly become a well-refined song-writing machine. The band has chiseled the six-minute jam style of their debut into hook-laden gems with riff driven catchiness and soaring melodies that stick.1.Confess To Me
6.Come Down Halo
7.Blizzard of Oblivion
8.Hard To Bear
9.Shake Your Blues
10.Choose Your Side
11.Same Old Blues$18.99Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
All American MadeA lot can change in a year: markets boom and bust, trends come and go, presidents
get elected. In 2015, Margo Price was a country underdog just trying to keep
enough gas in the tank to get to the next gig, but by the end of 2016, she was one
of the genre's most celebrated new artists and a ubiquitous presence on late night
television and at major festivals around the world.
It's the kind of year most musicians can only dream of, and the arrival of Price's
spectacular sophomore album, "All American Made," proves that she hasn't taken a
moment of it for granted. Delivering on the promise of her debut and then some, the
record finds Price planting her flag firmly in the soil as a songwriter who's here for
the long haul, one with the chops to hang with the greats she so often finds herself
sharing stages with these days.
A prolific writer with a knack for candid self-reflection, Price has never had to look
too far for inspiration, and on 'All American Made,' she and her songwriting partner/
husband, Jeremy Ivey, continue to depict the trials of everyday life with unflinching
honesty, painting poetically plainspoken portraits of men and women just trying to
Highs and lows, long nights and hard days, wild women and cocaine cowboys,
politics and sexism, it's all in there, singularly filtered through Price's wry, no-bullshit
perspective. Throughout the album, her contemporary take on classic sounds is at
once familiar and daring, an infectious blend of Nashville country, Memphis soul,
and Texas twang that tips its cap to everyone from Waylon and Willie (who makes
a guest appearance) to Loretta and Dolly, all while flipping a middle finger to the
cookie-cutter pop that dominates modern country radio. Rich with swirling pedal
steel, honky-tonk rhythms, and Price's stop-you-in-your-tracks vocals, 'All American
Made' is deeply reverent of tradition even as it challenges conventions, a nuanced
exploration of conflicted emotions for our deeply conflicted times.1. Don't Say It
3. A Little Pain
4. Learning to Lose
5. Pay Gap
6. Nowhere Fast
7. Cocaine Cowboys
8. Wild Women
9. Don't Say It
10. Do Right By Me
12. Don't Say It$17.99Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
NVMLike a fluorescent-lit snack-aisle oasis in some desolate interstate road stop, brimming with Skittles and limited-edition Sno Balls, Tacocat's Easter-egg-hued pop-punk-pop is bubblegum-sticky with hooks, bound to brighten up the most drab stretch of bummer backroad.
The band's four-person, seven-layer-burrito came together organically: Lelah Maupin (drums) and Eric Randall (guitar) met in their native Longview, WA-two hours south of Seattle, the very town that Green Day named their breakout debut single after. Lelah's family room was wallpapered with framed Magic Eye posters, hence Stereogram, the cross-eyed love letter to that bizarre '90s optical fad. She met lanky Eric while both worked at Safeway, wearing the chain's distinctive navy aprons before breaking north to Seattle. Eric's band The Trashies practiced and played in the basement of the 24/7 House in the Central District, where Long Beach, CA native Bree McKenna (bass) was living, amongst the dust, boxes, and spiders. Lelah met Butte, MT native Emily Nokes (voice, tambourine) in one excruciatingly early/boring graphic design class, slipping her a doodled-upon note; she soon noticed Emily's big voice while she sang along with R. Kelly on the radio. Emily and Bree hit it off one sloshy night at the Comet. Eric impressed Emily with his reenactments of scenes from Anaconda. Sometime around 2007, via countless raucous house party shows, the legend of Tacocat was born.
The foursome would quickly make a name for themselves with their simply energizing power pop, drawing on classic Northwest energy with an uncommonly upbeat, surfy swag that could only come from gray skies and hydroponic sunshine. Their sly and unabashed '90s revivalism has, in the past, found the band pondering Evan Dando and Waterworld-and Bree herself explains finding about riot grrrl via Napster and Julia Stiles in 10 Things I Hate About You. They've described themselves variously as Feminist sci-fi and Equal parts Kurt and Courtney; oh well, whatever NVM.
NVM-Tacocat's second full-length album and first for Hardly Art, opens up like some mystery shoebox, wistful, instantly nostalgic: snapshots of mortifying exes (You Never Came Back) and sketchy party situations (Party Trap), maybe a postcard with an alien smoking a joint. Cigarette cellophane-wrapped weed nugs, pain pill crumbs and wrapped tampons (all the girls are surfing the wave, surfing the crimson wave today"), all serve as a roadmap through Tacocat's bong-ripped reminiscences, scenarios all-too familiar and hilariously improbable. There's the notoriously inconsistent #8 Metro line (F.U. #8) and the accountability-allergic, black-clad brick-heavers of This Is Anarchy. The protagonist of Psychedelic Quinceañera-based on Bree-just wants to dance with rainbows, mind-expansion style, instead of having to wear a frilly dress in front of her whole family. Emily daydreams of a Bridge to Hawaii, where even the destitute could walk their asses to paradise-before being snapped out of it by cat-calls from construction workers, business dads, and drunk hobos (Hey Girl); sweaty jerks telling her that she should smile!
NVM all that, though: you should, and will, smile-either a wry little corner-lifter or a big ear-to-ear equator-and shake what's yours, when you hear the whippet-smart latest album from the world's favorite palindromic band. Text a friend.
--Larry Mizell1. You Never Came Back
2. Bridge to Hawaii
3. Crimson Wave
5. Pocket Full of Primrose
6. Psychedelic Quinceañera
7. Time Pirate
8. This is Anarchy
9. Hey Girl
10. Party Trap
11. F.U. #8
12. Alien Girl
13. Snow Day$13.99Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
Navigated Like The SwanYoung Moon aka Trevor Montgomery is a craftsman. By day he's a skilled tile setter, a job taxing to both the mind and body. By night he's an equally meticulous and hard working musician, coaxing just the right tones out of his vintage drum machines and synths to carry his tales of love and redemption. As a tile setter and as a musician, his job is the same: assembling things of beauty to fill empty spaces. It's those exact skills that are employed to great effect on this 13-song collection entitled Navigated Like The Swan.1. The Crystal Text
2. Walk in White
3. Winds Light
4. Northern Earth
6. A Reason
7. Ages of Youth
8. Cold Day Solstice
9. On the Verge
10. Summit and Blue Air
11. Emma Jane
12. The Ponds
13. Painting on Waves$18.99Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
Voices In A Rented Room (Discontinued)Sometimes it's best to see the world in black and white. Shades of grey are for p**s, right-and NEW BUMS have ridden the hard road all the way to this, their album debut. They've played around and they've hit the singles scene (haven't you turned up "Slim Volume"? 7EP of the year, man!), but Voices in a Rented Room tells their whole life story and probably more of yours than you'd care to admit. The voices are two, spinning harmonies both heavenly and salt-pickled. Picking their direction and floating along on a pair of acoustics, New Bums are the sound of old drunk America, dancing out of the shadows, coming forth again to stand in the light, in the hopes of repopulating those sad old single-occupancy hotels before they're all torn down. New Bums is the grudging match-up of DONVAN QUINN (SKYGREEN LEOPARDS) and BEN CHASNY (SIX ORGANS OF ADMITTANCE, COMETS ON FIRE, 200 YEARS, RANGDA). They didn't like each other at first, but now make sweet and sour music together over the light of the magical Sterno (if there's anything left in the can, that is!). The ideas go back and forth between Ben and Donovan in what seems to be a true partnership. Their songs are all that: songs, with lyrics set in a space to speak to the human buried in you. People's music, with all the stark confessions, tall tales, bleak humors and punch lines that the people can bear. Behind the acoustics and voices is lots of space, but there are a few extra instruments that come and go and tinge the scrim as the boys move from stately processional to streetcorner sing-around to bluesy weeper to low-rolling rock n roll and back again, with slide-guitar lines erupting in the dark night air and classical-tinged filigrees curling around the tarnished and rusting edges throughout.1. Black Bough
2. Pigeon Town
3. Your Girlfriend Might Be a Cop
4. Sometimes You Crash
5. The Killers and Me
6. Your Bullshit
7. It's The Way
8. Welcome to the Navy
10. Town on the Water
11. Mother's Favorite Hated Son
12. Cool Daughter$19.99Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
Long Players 92-99 (Box Set) (Awaiting Repress)Limited To 1000 Copies
Pressed By Gotta Groove On 150 Gram Vinyl
Contains 5 Original LPs Released From 1992-1999
Includes An Additional "Rarities" LP Only Available With This Box Set
In 1992, Dean Wareham followed the posthumous buzz of Galaxie 500 by forming a new band: Luna. Initially joined by Justin Harwood (of the Chills) and Stanley Demeski (of the Feelies), the group went on to sign to Warner Brothers sub-label Elektra, tour with the Velvet Underground, collaborate with Tom Verlaine and Sterling Morrison and ultimately release five stunning albums over the course of the 90s.
Deemed "the best band you've never heard of" by Rolling Stone, Luna remained under the radar for most of their career despite gathering a rabid cult following. It's not hard to see why this is the case, as the three albums featuring the original lineup (plus guitarist Sean Eden on the latter two) act as a perfect synthesis of the members past bands, blending the simplicity of Galaxie, the heavenly pop melodies of the Chills and the quick and intensely precise drumming of the Feelies into one fluid package. This is particularly evident on 1995's fan-favorite Penthouse, in which the band created a masterpiece of lush, late night music that's now considered one of the best of the 90s.
Following Penthouse, the band saw the replacement of Stanley with Lee Wall on drums but no slump in quality. The psychedelic textures of 1997's Pup Tent and the clean and beautiful pop of 1999's Days of Our Nights proved that Luna was a consistently reliable band and not one that would wane with age. Elektra didn't feel the same way, though, and eventually decided not to release Days of Our Nights after paying for the recording.
This box set gathers together those five albums from the 90s as well as a compilation of demos and B-sides recorded contemporaneously, all housed in a beautiful textured canvas box. Accompanying the records is a 12" x 12" book featuring archival imagery, an interview with Dean Wareham conducted by Noah Baumbach and an oral history with the band and their producers. As the majority of these records were never released on vinyl outside of limited pressings, this is a boon to longtime fans and new listeners alike.LP 1: Lunapark (1992)
3. Slash Your Tires
4. Crazy People
7. I Can't Wait
8. Hey Sister
9. I Want Everything
10. Time To Quit
12. We're Both Confused
LP 2: Bewitched (1994)
1. California (All The Way)
2. Tiger Lily
3. Friendly Advice
5. This Time Around
6. Great Jones Street
7. Going Home
8. Into The Fold
9. I Know You Tried
10. Sleeping Pill
LP 3: Penthouse (1995)
2. Sideshow By The Seashore
3. Moon Palace
4. Double Feature
5. 23 Minutes in Brussels
6. Lost in Space
7. Rhythm King
10. Freakin' And Peakin'
LP 4: Pup Tent (1997)
2. Beautiful View
3. Pup Tent
4. Bobby Peru
5. Beggar's Bliss
6. Tracy I Love You
8. City Kitty
9. The Creeps
10. Fuzzy Wuzzy
LP 5: The Days of Our Nights (1999)
1. Dear Diary
2. Hello, Little One
3. The Old Fashioned Way
4. Four Thousand Days
5. Seven Steps To Satan
6. Superfreaky Memories
7. Math Wiz
8. Words Without Wrinkles
9. The Rustler
10. U.S. Out Of My Pants!
11. The Slow Song
12. Sweet Child O' Mine
LP 6: Rarities
1. Egg Nog
2. Indian Summer
3. Ride Into The Sun
4. That's What You Always Say
5. Anesthesia (Demo)
6. In The Flesh
7. Bonnie And Clyde
8. I Know You Tried (Demo)
9. Roll In The Sand
10. Dear Paulina$188.99Vinyl LP Box Set + Book - 6 LPs Sealed AWAITING REPRESS Buy Now
Includes CD With Bonus Tracks
The March entry in our 25th anniversary reissue series is Bloomed, the 1994 debut album
from Richard Buckner. The album will be remastered and released on 180-gram
vinyl and will include a CD containing 11 bonus tracks of radio sessions, live
performances, and original recordings of songs that appeared on future releases.
Spin magazine described Buckner as "equal parts Bay Area bohemian and dust bowl
traditionalist" and named Bloomed one of its best albums of 1994, while Pitchfork
wrote, "It's a traditional outsider-country record in the lineage of Townes Van Zandt.
Buckner's voice is all honey and oak, his guitar style elaborately twanging, his constant
subject matter heartache."
Richard Buckner provides some background on the album:
Bloomed was originally (erroneously?) released on an unnamable German label in 1994.
I was living in San Francisco at the time, having just moved out of a residential hotel
and into the 1906 hilltop prefab that adorns the cover. At the time, I was heading a
band called The Doubters. We were playing high profile events such as The Covered
Wagon Saloon's Musical Barstools, but weren't making much headway. We had been
turned down consistently every year by SXSW, but I was somehow finagled in as
an unannounced guest onto an already unofficial SXSW showcase created by Butch
Hancock at his gallery in downtown Austin. There, I met up again with Lloyd Maines,
who agreed to produce my first record.
Maines and I met in Lubbock, TX, a few months later, where we worked with
Lubbock musicians in a small recording studio walled in wooden shingles Sharpied
with bible passages from various church groups that also enjoyed working there.
It was 112°F the morning I arrived under the suspicious (Californians are merely
B-grade yankees) gaze of downtown's Buddy Holly statue. That first night there, it
hailed so hard that heaven's angry pellets were storming in under my motel door. It
only let up for a few moments that first night, allowing me to run across the street to
get a butter burger and fries to go. We finished four days later and I flew back to San
Francisco, dismembered the band, and embarked on a tour that would last about 20
years (or a few days, if you count what I actually remember).
Nothing's changed. I'm still dodging the sky and busking to strangers.LP
1. Blue and Wonder
5. Six Years
6. This is Where
7. Gauzy Dress in the Sun
10. Up North
11. Surprise, AZ
12. Cradle to the Angel
1. The Last Ride
2. Settled Down
3. The Worst Way
5. Hutchinson (Recorded in 1995 at Black Eyed Pig in San Francisco by Kyle Statham)
6. Surprise, AZ (Recorded in 1996 at World CafÉ)
7. Blue and Wonder (Recorded in 1997 at KCRW)
8. Still Lookin For You-Townes Van Zandt (Recorded in 1997 at World CafÉ)
9. Up North
10. Six Years
11. Gauzy Dress in the Sun (Recorded live at The Starry Plough, Berkeley CA 2/25/1995)$19.99180 Gram Audiophile Virgin Vinyl LP + CD - Sealed Buy Now
Something Else!!!! The Music Of Ornette ColemanThis 1958 debut recording by the Ornette Coleman Quintet, which featured Coleman on his trademark white plastic alto, Don Cherry on trumpet, Billy Higgins on drums, Walter Norris on piano, and Don Payne on bass, shook up the jazz world -- particularly those musicians and critics who had entered the hard bop era with such verve and were busy using the blues as a way of creating vast solo spaces inside tight and short melody lines. Something Else!!!! is anathema to that entire idea, and must have sounded like it came from outer space at the time. First, Coleman's interest was in pitch, not being in tune. His use of pitch could take him all over -- and outside of -- a composition, as it does on Invisible, which begins in D flat. The intervals are standard, but the melodic component of the tune -- despite its hard bop tempo -- is, for the most part, free. But what is most compelling is evident in abundance here and on the next two tunes, The Blessing and Jayne: a revitalization of the blues as it expressed itself in jazz. Coleman refurbished the blues framework, threaded it through his jazz without getting rid of its folk-like, simplistic milieu. In other words, the groove Coleman was getting here was a people's groove that only confounded intellectuals at the time. Coleman restored blues to their classic beginnings in African music and unhooked their harmonies. Whether the key was D flat, A, G, whatever, Coleman revisited the 17- and 25-bar blues. There are normal signatures, however, such as Chippie in F and in eight-bar form, and The Disguise is in D, but in a strange 13-bar form where the first and the last change places, altering the talking-like voice inherent in the melodic line. But the most important thing about Something Else! was that, in its angular, almost totally oppositional way, it swung and still does; like a finger-poppin' daddy on a Saturday night, this record swings from the rafters of the human heart with the most unusually gifted, emotional, and lyrical line since Bill Evans first hit the scene. ~ Thom Jurek, Rovi1. Invisible
2. The Blessing
5. The Disguise
6. Angel Voice
8. When Will the Blues Leave?
9. The Sphinx$21.99Vinyl LP Reissue - Sealed Buy Now
Good News For Modern Man
First Time On Vinyl For This 1999 Solo Album From Ex Husker Du Drummer/songwriter!
No one has to ask what the hell happened to Grant Hart? anymore. When last heard from in 1994, he was releasing his second LP with Nova Mob. His absence since was perhaps atypical, but here he is again, resuming his solo career for the first time in ten years. The good news is that Good News doesn't sound like Nova Mob or 1991's visceral Last Days of Pompeii, nor does it repeat his more introspective 1989 solo LP Intolerance or 1988's accomplished 2541 EP. Production-wise, this is the most pleasant Hart has come across. A sugar rush is added to his pronounced hooks, adding warmth without robbing the attack of vitality. It's hard to describe -- the first thought might be the exuberance of Cheap Trick on Surrender, only not so thumping. Songs such as Nobody Rides for Free and Seka Knows are not traditional power pop as much as vaguely restrained, crunchy-under-the-surface melodic rock songs with slight '60s influence. This steady, understated exhilaration is consistent with Hart's affable personality. You see it most on the lightest selection, Run Run Run to the Centre Pompidou, a jaunty pop romp to nowhere in gay Paris. But it's just as prevalent in the slower, demure tracks such as You Don't Have to Tell Me Now and, most unique of all, the Chills-like New Zealand hush of Teeny's Hair. Hart's control now is as impressive as when he was contrarily blistering the night with such incredible intensity behind the drums in 1984. His best LP since he parted company with Bob Mould and Greg Norton? Very likely!
- Jack Rabid (All Music Guide)1. Little Nemo
2. Think It Over Now
3. Nobody Rides For Free
4. Run Run Run To The Centre Pompidou
5. You Don't Have To Tell Me Now
6. Teeny's Hair
7. A Letter From Anne Marie
8. In A Cold House
9. Seka Knows
10. Remains to Be Seen
11. Let Rosemary Rock Him, Laura-Louise$16.99Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
UNIM-FAN-0364xFlanagan / Coltrane / Burrell / Sulieman
The Cats (Pre-Order)In 1957, the greatest year for recorded music including modern jazz, Detroit was a hot spot, a centerpiece to many hometown heroes as well as short-term residents like John Coltrane and Miles Davis. It was here that Trane connected with pianist Tommy Flanagan, subsequently headed for the East Coast, and recorded this seminal hard bop album. In tow were fellow Detroiters -- drummer Louis Hayes, bassist Doug Watkins, and guitarist Kenny Burrell, with the fine trumpeter from modern big bands Idrees Sulieman as the sixth wheel.
From the opening number, the classic Minor Mishap, you realize something special is happening. Flanagan is energized, playing bright and joyous melody lines, comping and soloing like the blossoming artist he was. Coltrane is effervescent and inspired, hot off the presses from the Miles Davis Quintet and searching for more expressionism. The other hard bop originals, Eclypso and Solacium, easily burn with a cool flame not readily associated with East Coast jazz. Flanagan himself is the catalyst more than the horns -- dig his soaring, animated solo on Eclypso as he quotes Jeepers Creepers. The near 12-minute blues Tommy's Tune is the perfect vehicle for Burrell, a prelude for his classics of the same period All Day Long and All Night Long. The lone trio session, on the standard How Long Has This Been Going On?, is regarded as quintessential Flanagan, and quite indicative of the Midwestern Motor City flavor Flanagan and his many peers brought into the mainstream jazz of the day and beyond. One yearns for alternate takes of this session.
The Cats is a prelude to much more music from all of these masters that would come within a very short time period thereafter, and cannot come more highly recommended. It's a must-buy for the ages.
-Michael G. Nasto (All Music Guide)1. Minor Mishap
2. How Long Has This Been Going On?
5. Tommy's Time$21.99Vinyl LP - Sealed PRE-ORDER Buy Now
We're All Young TogetherNot wasting much time since The Walkmen announced their hiatus (and then reneged that announcement for a night), the band's multi-instrumentalist and co-writer Walter Martin has revealed details of his debut solo outing. Entitled We're All Young Together, the record is due out in 2014 from Family Jukebox.
The label name is especially apt as the spark for the album came when Martin's wife was pregnant with their first child. "It wasn't that I wanted to write songs to suit my new situation as a parent," Martin said in a press release. "It was more parenthood made relevant writing the kind of songs I've always loved most." He continued, "I began to imagine a record I really wanted to hear: something new and original that captured the essence of early rock 'n' roll - innocent but mischievous, romantic but funny, and unabashedly sweet."
Martin brought in the help of some big name friends for the record, including Yeah Yeah Yeahs' Karen O and Nick Zinner, The National's Matt Berninger, Clap Your Hands Say Yeah's Alec Ounsworth, and - proving that their are no hard feelings - The Walkmen's own Hamilton Leithuaser and Matt Barrick.
Subject matter ranges from sibling similarities ("Hey Sister") to a treatise on the difference amongst The Beatles ("The Beatles (When Ringo Shook His Mop)"). Our first taste of the record, however, comes in the form of the acoustic lullaby "Sing To Me", featuring Karen O.
- Ben Kaye (Consequence Of Sound)1. We're All Young Together ft. Alec Ounsworth
2. We Like The Zoo ('Cause We're Animals Too) ft. Matt Berninger
3. I-M-A-G-I-N-A-T-I-O-N ft. Kat Edmonson
4. Rattlesnakes ft. Karen O and Nick Zinner
5. Sing To Me ft. Karen O
6. The Beatles (When Ringo Shook His Mop) ft. Hamilton Leithauser, Nick Stumpf, Josh Wise, and Matt Iwanusa
7. If I Were a Tiger ft. Martin McAlevey & Nina Dhongia
8. Costa Rica
9. Hey Sister ft. Kat Edmonson
10. It's a Dream$19.99Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
Bringin' ItIconic bassist Christian McBride has been doing what the title of his upcoming big band album implores for years: Bringin' It. This highly anticipated release, which follows the Christian McBride Big Band's 2011 Grammy® Award-winning debut, The Good Feeling, puts his status and skills as an all-around entertainer on full display. With a list of growing accolades including his recent appointment as Artistic Director at the Newport Jazz Festival, hosting shows on SiriusXM ("The Lowdown: Conversations with Christian") and NPR ("Jazz Night in America," as well as frequent online contributions to various programs including "All Things Considered"), speaking engagements, and occasional DJ performances under the alias DJ Brother Mister, he's more than just a bandleader: Christian McBride is transcending that title to something more complete.
If it is true that jazz is a sponge for musicians to absorb and then squeeze out what they hear to produce their own sound, McBride has been "bringin' it" for quite a long time. From his amazing quintet, Inside Straight, to his avant-garde leaning quartet, New Jawn, the contemporary sound of his fusion group, A Christian McBride Situation, to the critically acclaimed music he's made with his trio, the bassist has always disseminated his own unique 360-degree view of jazz.
While the music played by the Christian McBride Big Band is on the cutting edge of 21st century large ensemble music, the orchestra's presentation, like its sound, respects the past while looking forward. Danny Ray, the legendary stage announcer for James Brown, travels with the group to give the leader an old-school intro before playing his thoroughly modern music. "I love having the show aspect of it as well, with Danny Ray there, and being able to create somewhat of a show while also having Melissa there as our vocalist."
That would be Melissa Walker, who graces Bringin' It on two tracks: "Upside Down," originally done by Brazilian superstar Djavan, and the unlikely slick arrangement of "Mr. Bojangles." In addition to maintaining a career in jazz, Walker is also the co-founder of Jazz House Kids, the award winning jazz education center and she's Mrs. Christian McBride.
Only two tracks on this 11-song set were not arranged by the leader: the "Upside Down" arrangement was contributed by Norman Simmons, while "Optimism" is from the person he's known the longest in his band, trombonist Steve Davis. Davis has the distinction of being the very last Jazz Messenger that Art Blakey hired before he died in 1990.
"I saw that last Jazz Messengers band that Steve was in," McBride remembers. "Blakey was a huge influence on me and because of that, Steve and I share the same compositional and arranging DNA. You see, even though I've been influenced by every great big band and every great arranger I've ever heard, three of my greatest influences - not just as composers but also as improvisers - are Freddie Hubbard, Wayne Shorter and Cedar Walton. I mean before, after and during the period when they were with Art Blakey & the Jazz Messengers."
McBride played bass for Freddie Hubbard's quintet for nearly three years starting when he was 18. One of the songs he loved to play with the legendary trumpeter was "Thermo." A few years ago he brought this arrangement to a gig with Wynton Marsalis and the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra. When the four trumpeters had to work hard to go over the riffs in the tune, McBride felt a certain pride. "I just thought that Freddie was somewhere up in heaven laughing," says McBride.
Perennial poll-topping arranger Maria Schneider has also been an influence on McBride. He cites times when he'd just bug her for hours, peppering her with questions, particularly on a recent trip to Europe. He honors her with his rendition of "I Thought About You." "She has an arrangement of 'Giant Steps' where she arranged the melody over a D pedal so I said let me try something like that," McBride recounts. "That's where that came from. She really gave me a lot of information and has been a great influence on me."
Another aspect that has helped the bassist find his voice as an arranger is the fact that, except for drummer Quincy Phillips, this is the exact same band that recorded with him six years ago. "These guys know my sound. They know my style. They know what my compositional and arranging DNA is. I've been able to keep the exact same unit, so like Duke Ellington used to do, I can write for my guys because I know their sound and style.
"As for my originals, they all have been recorded with my small groups," he continues on about the tracks "Gettin' To It," "Youthful Bliss," and "Used'ta Could." "As an arranger I'm still in the early stages of my development so it seems to me the best way to really make my hopeful ascension into a better arranger is to obviously take a song I've already written and try to add to that and make it a worthy large ensemble song."
While the Wes Montgomery smoker "Full House" isn't a McBride original, it is part of his development as an arranger - it's a big band chart he first created for guitarist Russell Malone at Jazz Aspen in 2009. He says he's tweaked it since then for his go-to guitarist Rodney Jones. For the McCoy Tyner classic "Sahara," the bassist channeled his 20+ years of playing with the legendary Chick Corea, for which McBride won two of his five Grammys. Another one of his Grammys came from a co-op project with Tyner. "I always thought of Chick, in his early years, as being a branch from the tree of McCoy Tyner, if you will," he commented.
McBride's work ethic is evident in the challenge he set for himself on the steamy old ballad "In The Wee Small Hours of the Morning." "I decided to torture myself by writing that arrangement in the key of B. To me that's a very pretty key, but it is a very hard key for a double bass because I get to play no open strings," McBride explains. "When I play it live, every bass player in the house comes to me and says, 'is that in B? Why do you do that?' Maybe it's because I'm crazy, but I really wanted to do something difficult and keep myself on my toes."
Planning to keep this group simmering while he simultaneously resurrects his Inside Straight band and introduces his new trio, Tip City, McBride is most excited to embrace the golden age of big bands while they continue bringin' it with more gigs and their first European tour. "With my big band I try to combine all of my journeys and goals as a musician and then try to put it in a wrapper of show business," the five-time Grammy® Award-winner comments. "I really think in that sense I'm following something of a big band tradition."1. Gettin' To It
3. Youthful Bliss
4. I Thought About You
6. Upside Down
7. Full House
8. Mr. Bojangles
9. Used 'ta Could
10. In The Wee Small Hours Of The Morning
11. Optimism$34.99180 Gram Audiophile Virgin Vinyl LP - 2 LPs Sealed Buy Now
Strangers AlmanacWhiskeytown, a highly acclaimed founding band of the alt-country/No Depression scene, launched the solo career of four-time Grammy®-nominated singer-songwriter-guitarist Ryan Adams as well as that of fiddler-singer-songwriter Caitlin Cary. Now the groups 1997 major label debut album, an overlooked gem from a band considered one of the genres most promising, is being released for the first time ever on vinyl.
1997's Strangers Almanac was Whiskeytown's major-label debut and the album that first introduced Ryan Adams to a wide audience, but at the same time it marked the beginning of the end for the group. When Whiskeytown went into the studio to record Strangers Almanac, the band had undergone the first of what would become a long line of personnel shakeups, and in addition to Ryan Adams, the only proper members of the group on hand for the sessions were violinist and vocalist Caitlin Cary and guitarist Phil Wandscher; session musicians filled out the lineup, while the new rhythm section, Jeff Rice (bass) and Steve Terry (drums), was hired only two weeks before recording began. Despite its chaotic creation, Strangers Almanac sounds stronger and more cohesive than its ragged but forceful indie predecessor, Faithless Street, and there's a deeper resonance in Ryan Adams' tales of wasted nights and wasted lives, such as Inn Town, Losering, and Dancing with the Women at the Bar. Strangers Almanac doesn't rock as hard as Whiskeytown's earlier material, but when the guitars kick into high gear on Yesterday's News and Waiting to Derail, it reveals just how good a match Ryan Adams and Wandscher were, and Excuse Me While I Break My Own Heart Tonight and 16 Days are as strong and moving as their country gestures got. Strangers Almanac captures Whiskeytown when they still had some business calling themselves a band rather than just Ryan Adams' backing musicians, and the glorious world-weariness of its best moments makes it a far more satisfying listen than most of what would follow once Ryan Adams struck out on his own.1. Inn Town
2. Excuse Me While I Break My Own Heart Tonight
3. Yesterdays News
4. 16 Days
5. Everything I Do
6. Houses on the Hill
7. Turn Around
8. Dancing with the Women at the Bar
9. Waiting to Derail
12. Somebody Remembers the Rose
13. Not Home Anymore
Live in the Studio Radio Performances September 1997 Houses on the Hill*
14. Nurse with the Pills*
15. I Dont Care What You Think About Me*
16. Somebody Remembers the Rose*
17. Turn Around*
*previously unreleased$24.99180 Gram Audiophile Virgin Vinyl LP - 2 LPs Sealed Buy Now
Spreading RumoursSpreading Rumors is Grouplove's second full-length album.
Hannah Hooper met Christian Zucconi late one evening on the lower east side of Manhattan. They had both been living in New York for years and had never crossed paths before. But from that night forward the two could hardly be pulled apart. Soon after their connection Hooper was invited to an art residency in Greece on the island of Crete and Hooper insists without any hesitation she invited Zucconi to join her on this journey. Seriously, we had only known one another for a few days but are both so inspired and alive when we are together that going to Greece seemed like a magical and natural thing to do recalls Zucconi.
On Crete, in a small remote mountain village, Hooper and Zucconi met the members of their future band Grouplove a year before it was officially formed. Sean Gadd, a natural songwriter and guitar player, born and bred in London instantly bonded with the two eccentric New Yorkers. Their relationship became apparent through the music they were making day in and day out. Andrew Wessen, a pro surfer and musician from Los Angeles and his childhood friend Ryan Rabin, an accomplished drummer and producer, were also at the residency and quickly joined in with the musical trio. These five musicians make up the members of what we now know as Grouplove.
Like all good things, the summer and the residency came to an end and the five friends scattered back to their homes all over the globe. With Sean in London, Christian and Hannah in Brooklyn and Ryan and Andrew in Los Angeles Grouplove was faced with the challenge of what to do now. We all understood how rare it is for five strangers to feel as close as family and create passionate music together. We couldn't just return to Brooklyn and let the music we all made fade into a memory of that summer we had in Greece, explains Zucconi. Everyone pulled their funds together and Sean, Christian and Hannah made their way to Ryan Rabin's studio in LA to record their album. We seriously had the best time of our lives doing that record, says Zucconi. And the result is an incredibly special album where soaring harmonies coupled with sweeping anthems lead you through their powerful journey. Like the members of Grouplove, their music is diverse in influence and style but bonded together by an undeniably creative kinship.
Their experience back together and recording together was so potent that Hooper and Zucconi packed up their lives in Brooklyn and moved to LA to live and play their music.
We never could have dreamt this up says Zucconi, but at the same time we're not at all surprised - GROUPLOVE is meant to be. Our story a testament to fate, and our music is something we are ready to share.1. I'm With You
2. Borderlines And Aliens
4. Ways To Go
5. Shark Attack
6. Sit Still
7. Hippy Hill
8. What I Know
9. Didn't Have To Go
10. Bitin' The Bullet
11. News To Me
13. Save The Party For Me$20.99Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
Home Cooking (Discontinued)A monstrous batch of instrumentals from the deep funk underground The Soul Investigators hail from the icy north of funky Finland where somehow theyve managed to carve out a sound thats harder, fiercer, and more kicking than most of the other funk acts recording in more southbound parts of the globe.
The drums are hard, the guitars are scratchy, and the organ cooks like a space heater in a fire trap on a cold Chicago night! All tracks are instrumentals, and the albums recorded with a messed-up sound that makes the whole thing feel like youve found a box of rare funky 45s! These guys are truly the kings of dirty funk as youll hear on titles that include Micro Popcorn, Mommas Gravy, Deep Fried Chitlins, Good Food, Greasy Pork, Midnight BBQ, and Greens Pleasetoo much Funky!
Re-packed with authentic old school extra heavy cardboard sleeve + voucher for digital download + The Soul Investigators Fan-Club postcard.1. Home Cooking Pt. 1
2. Mo' Hash
3. Greasy Pork
4. Greens Please
5. Ti-Ki Tofu
6. Midnight Bar-b-q
7. Good Food
8. Home Cooking Pt. 2
9. Micro Popcorn
10. Electric Cooker
11. Deep Fried Chitlings
12. Momma's Gravy
13. Baby It's Delicious$19.99Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
Kansas City Suite: The Music Of Benny Carter (Pure Pleasure)A session from 1960 with Basie and his Orchestra on absolute top form. It's hardly surprising when you see the line up of star players and also the fact that every single selection was written by Benny Carter.
The Kansas City that Count Basie found himself in had become the hard core of vital new jazz. It was a place where the musicians who expressed this new jazz could, from night through morning, and on again the next night, sit in on numerous jam sessions.It was a place where musicians like Walter Page, Benny Moten, Lester Young, Ben Webster, Andy Kirk, Coleman Hawkins and many more, could be found working, experimenting and living their music. This was Count Basie's Kansas City, and this is the Kansas City that Benny Carter has dedicated this music to. He has written an original modern jazz suite that is flavored with the elements of Kansas City stomp jazz, and tailored for the big brash sound of the Basie band of today. To Benny Carter, the different streets and places in Kansas City, where so many of these jazz greats lived and worked, and where so much of jazz history was written, evokes a mood, a rememberance of things past. He has, for this reason, titled the selections of this suite after these very same streets and places. The Kansas City of the '20s and 30s is now a legend, and the music that saw it's beginnings there has since developed and moved into the mainstream of today's jazz. It has reached its full maturity and greatness in the music of Benny Carter, and through the dynamic force of the great Basie band!
- Sonny Cohn (trumpet)
- Thad Jones (trumpet)
- Henry Coker (trombone)
- Benny Powell (trombone)
- Marshall Royal (alto saxophone,clarinet)
- Billy Mitcheel (tenor saxophone, clarinet)
- Charles Fowlkes (bassoon, bass clarinet, flute)
- Count Basie (piano)
- Freddie Green (guitar)
- Eddie Jones (bass)
- Sonny Payne (drums)
Recording: September 1960 at United Recorders, Los Angeles, by Wally Heider
Production: Teddy Reig
About Pure Pleasure
At the beginning of the 90s, in the early days of audiophile vinyl re-releases, the situation was fairly straightforward. Companies such as DCC, Mobile Fidelity, Classic Records and, of course, Pure Pleasure all maintained a mutual, unwritten ethical code: we would only use analogue tapes to manufacture records.
During the course of the present vinyl hype, many others have jumped on the bandwagon in the hope of securing a corner of the market. Very often they are not so ethical and use every imaginable source to master from: CDs, LPs, digital files, MP3s - or employed existent tools from the 80s and 90s for manufacturing.
A digital delay is gladly used when cutting a lacquer disc because tape machines with an analogue delay have become quite rare and are therefore expensive. When cutting the lacquer, the audio signal is delayed by one LP revolution against the signal, which controls the cutter head, and for this a digital delay is very often employed. Of course, the resultant sound signal is completely digital and thus only as good as this delay.
We should like to emphasize that Pure Pleasure Records on principle only uses the original master tape as the basis for the entirely analogue cutting of lacquer discs. In addition, the pressing tool is newly manufactured as a matter of principle.
We only employ existing tools for manufacturing if an improved result is not forthcoming, e.g. the title Elvis Is Back, which was mastered by Steve Hoffman and Kevin Gray, or several titles from our Philips Classics series, which in any case Willem Makkee cut from the original masters at the Emil Berliner Studios in the 90s. It goes without saying that we only used the mother and that new tools were made for our production.
To put it in a nutshell: we can ensure you that our releases are free from any kind of digital effects and that the lacquer discs are newly cut.1. Vine Street Rumble
3. Miss Missouri
4. Jackson County Jubilee
5. Sunset Glow
6. The Wiggle Walk
7. Meetin' Time
8. Paseo Promenade
9. Blue Five Jive
10. Rompin' At The Reno$34.99180 Gram Audiophile Virgin Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
I'm Not The DevilCody Jinks was raised on country music but he cut his teeth on metal. "Metallica was king. They set the tone for me and I spent a good part of my youth wanting to be James Hetfield." After a dedicated stint as a frontman in a thrash metal band, Jinks willingly found himself back to where it all began. "My dad loved the outlaw country icons, Johnny Cash, Waylon Jennings and Merle Haggard. That never ending consistency of incredible music growing up laid some very deep seeds. I'm mean, come on nothing better than mentally diving into 'The Hag' and metal when it comes time for me to write songs."
Always avoiding trends and ferociously choosing his direction was the only option from day one, even though that very path could have prevented success. "What is success if you can't wake up everyday being who you really are. In the end, that will catch up with you." Jinks has been tested countless times by his career choices. The better part of the last 15 years have included numerous empty bar rooms and a never ending financial loss. "Yeah, I've been pretty good at losing money. Not the greatest feeling in the world to be gone from home for long stretches of time, only to walk in the door broke. Luckily I've got a damn good woman in my life. She has stood by me with unmeasurable strength to say the least and it is an absolute fact that I seriously overplayed my hand when landing her."
His long, dark beard and endless array of tattoos are no fad. They unquestionably define Cody Jinks. His prototypical metal/hard rock band frontman look is not a well orchestrated image, but again, define Cody Jinks. Diving into to his album, I'm Not the Devil is the perpetual truth of who he is and where he has found himself at this point in his career. "I'm just glad that I ended up where I am now," Jinks said. "It makes complete sense that I'm at this place in my life. Country music found me when I was young and chased me down as I grew older"
Jinks' latest project is his deepest, darkest and most provocative album to date, with a metal common denominator, the apocalypse, running throughout the record. "It's a pretty scary time," Jinks said. "There are some evil people running things in the world. It hits me since I have a six and three-year old."
There's not a weightier song than the aptly titled "Heavy Load." It's the most apocalyptic song on the album but the dense cut, with a pretty violin break, is a gorgeous tune. The vocal hook grabs ears when Jinks croons "Train Jumps Tracks Some Time Ago/You Can't Root That Heavy Load." "That was the last song I wrote on the record," Jinks said. "I couldn't be happier how that one turned out."
"All You Can" features a pretty piano line and sobering wordplay. When Jinks belts out 'What Are You Living For," you can't help but think about the serious question posed in what is becoming an increasingly shallow existence. "I was really tired when I wrote that song," Jinks said. "We had been on the road for awhile. The bottom line is that if you're not helping people, you're not doing your job as a human being. It's time to quit feeling sorry for yourself and do something."
One of Jinks' favorite songs on the album is "The Way I Am," a cover of a Merle Haggard classic. "I love that song," Jinks says. "I wrapped it up just before Merle died. The song always resonated with me. I relate to that one since there are times I would rather be out fishing."
"No Words" is a stunner of a gritty, autobiographical love song, which is a throwback to how songs used to be written. It is a tuneful gem, inspired by reality. Jinks starts out dark as night. "My Whole View of the World has Changed/ I Guess that Comes with Age/I Don't Believe there is Good in Every Man Like I Did Back Then/I May Drink More Than I Should/You've Seen Me on the Floor/I Spent my Lifetime in this Cage I Built Around Me." But the song is actually a tip of the hat to his beloved wife of 19 years. "There Aint' No Words/ To Say How Much I Need You/With You Here/ You Make This Life I Lead Worth Living." "It's about my wife," Jinks says. "But the funny thing is that she doesn't like it. She thinks it sounds too sad."
With the title track "I'm Not the Devil," Jinks wakes us all up to the realities of mistakes and the heartfelt desire to be forgiven. "We are all guilty of mistakes and very guilty of pointing out the mistakes of others. Forgiveness feels so much better or so I think."
It's impressive how Jinks is getting his message across. Jinks utilizes space well in his songs. Notes aren't crammed in. Jinks lets his songs breathe. "After all I've experienced, I think I've matured," Jinks says. "I think you can hear it in the music. I've grown up."
Even though he still looks the part of the headbanger he was back in the day, he has moved on. "It's all for the best, Jinks says. "I'm where I was meant to be."
It's all about the music and the fans, who are the fuel that drives Jinks. "They come out night after night giving up hard earned money and precious time to see me play," Jinks says. " It's truly is amazing when you really think about it. The best way I can say thanks is by giving back with effort and gratitude."1. The Same
2. I'm Not the Devil
3. No Guarantees
4. No Words
5. Give All You Can
6. She's All Mine
7. The Way I Am
8. Chase That Song
9. Heavy Load
11. Church at Gaylor Creek
13. Hand Me Down$24.99Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
Live From Austin, TX (Buck Owens)Maybe it was an epiphany of sorts. As Buck tells it, One day I was watching Austin City Limits and Dwight Yoakam was on, then he dedicates the program to 'Buck Owens.' So I said, I'm going to see what this kid is like. It wasn't long after that he was on stage with Dwight singing his old hits. Buck was bitten by the bug to return to music, after calling it quits almost ten years earlier. This man from Sherman, Texas - probably best-known as the wide-grinning rube on Hee Haw for so many years - started a country music revolution. Or more accurately, a counter-revolution. It was called The Bakersfield Sound. He and fellow revolutionary Merle Haggard were cranking out raw, hard-driving honky-tonk music that stood the country-pop coming out of Nashville on its head. When Buck Owens and the Buckaroos would launch into I've got a tiger by the tail, it's plain to see....! the packed crowds would be on their feet and headed for the dance floor. Along the way Buck inspired none other than The Beatles to record their first country song, his classic Act Naturally, and the master of soul, Ray Charles, to immortalize one of the best-known country songs ever, Crying Time. Buck always loved his home state, and once flew to Austin on his private jet to make a surprise visit to a club that celebrated a Buck Owens Birthday night every year. He was also one of the few artists to ever write a handwritten note thanking us for inviting him on the show. Many thanks, he wrote, it is very representative of what I am all about. In my mind, Buck Owens will always be a rock star.
- Terry Lickona (producer Austin City Limits)1. Act Naturally
2. Together Again
3. Love's Gonna Live Here
4. Crying Time
5. Tiger By The Tail
7. Hot Dog
8. Put Another Quarter In The Jukebox
10. Under Your Spell Again (With Dwight Yoakam)
11. Johnny B. Goode$21.99180 Gram Audiophile Virgin Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
The RiverRanked 253/500 On Rolling Stone Magazine's 500 Greatest Albums Of All Time
Mastered By Bob Ludwig Working Under The Supervision Of Springsteen & Engineer Toby Scott
The River is the fifth studio album, and the first double album by Bruce Springsteen.
The sources of The River go back into earlier parts of Springsteen's recording career. Independence Day, Point Blank, The Ties That Bind, Ramrod, and Sherry Darling were leftovers from his previous album, Darkness on the Edge of Town, and had been featured on the 1978 tour, as had parts of Drive All Night as a long interpolation within Backstreets. The River had premiered at the September 1979 Musicians United for Safe Energy concerts, gaining a featured spot in the subsequent documentary No Nukes.
Originally, Springsteen intended The River to be a single set entitled The Ties That Bind and released in late 1979 with 10 tracks. Springsteen added darker material after he'd written the title track. Indeed, The River became noted for its mix of the frivolous next to the solemn. This was intentional, and in contrast to Darkness, for as Springsteen said during an interview, Rock and roll has always been this joy, this certain happiness that is in its way the most beautiful thing in life. But rock is also about hardness and coldness and being alone ... I finally got to the place where I realized life had paradoxes, a lot of them, and you've got to live with them.LP1
1. The Ties That Bind
2. Sherry Darling
3. Jackson Cage
4. Two Hearts
5. Independence Day
6. Hungry Heart
7. Out In The Street
8. Crush On You
9. You Can Look (But You Better Not Touch)
10. I Wanna Marry You
11. The River
1. Point Blank
2. Cadillac Ranch
3. I'm A Rocker
4. Fade Away
5. Stolen Car
7. The Price You Pay
8. Drive All Night
9. Wreck On The Highway$39.99180 Gram Audiophile Virgin Vinyl - 2 LPs Sealed Buy Now
Live On Fire (Awaiting Repress)Colored Triple Vinyl Set of This Amazing Live Show!
Despite having planned his career meticulously over the past 25 years or so, even in the camp of German hard rock master Axel Rudi Pell surprises cannot be ruled out: Before playing in front of a sold-out Cologne crowd on the second leg of his wildly successful Circle Of The Oath tour, the opportunity arose for taping the whole show, with cameras being all over. Well, Axel gave it a try. And that was a good move. Ten years after his last live album Knights Live (2002), you can - again - be a witness of a complete concert from the Bochum-based guitar virtuoso and his German-American all-star band. To round out the Axel Rudi Pell live package, the recording of the co-headlining gig at last year's Rock Of Ages festival was added to Live On Fire, the name of his newest live oeuvre.
Obviously, a live album doesn't have the same importance and significance as a new studio output, but it nevertheless is a perfect snapshot in time, because 2012 was the most successful year in Axel Rudi Pell's solo career by far. Circle Of The Oath, album No. 14, was released on March 23 and rode high on the charts all over Europe: in his homeland Germany, the critically acclaimed disc made it up to No. 16 in the first week, Switzerland welcomed good old Axel on No. 30, Austria on No. 55, Norway on No. 69 and in Sweden he went up to No. 51. And last but not least, he received another gold award for selling out three consecutive nights at the famous Zeche venue in his native Bochum. Apart from that, he rocked the summer crowds at the legendary Sweden Rock and Wacken Open Air festivals, as well as the open-air Rock Of Ages in Germany together with his band.
Even though Axel loves the composing part at home and the recording business in the studio, home is where the heart is and that's being on stage. Being musically socialized in the Golden Age of hard rock (the Seventies) he's probably a bigger fan of live albums than he would admit. As they say: applause is the performer's meat and drink. But without sometimes being anarchistic spontaneously and playing with the audience's emotions, without the sweat coming off the ceiling and the priceless energy being trapped in the middle of an adventure that is called live concert, when the lights go down and every amp is on fire - the life of a true rocker would be incomplete. Speaking of which: besides his success, Axel Rudi Pell has always been that down-to-earth guy and mainly the fan he was turned into when he first heard DEEP PURPLE's Fireball back in the day. With Live On Fire, he accomplishes a long-desired wish and gives his fans what they desperately want for quite some time.
No surprise at all that the main focus is set on the newbies: here's the striking chords of fast and furious opener Ghost In The Black, the hard rocking pounding of Before I Die and without a doubt one of Axel's best songs written in a decade: the brilliant Circle Of The Oath, which would make Jimmy Page cry out loud. But there's more to listen to on Live On Fire: the passion for medleys (The Masquerade Ball/Casbah/Dreaming Dead) combined with some all-time classics here and there (ZEPPELIN's Whole Lotta Love or PURPLE's Mistreated).1. The Guillotine Suite (intro)
2. Ghost In The Black
3. Strong As A Rock
4. Before I Die
5. The Masquerade Ball / Casbah / Dreaming Dead / Whole Lotta Love / Dreaming Dead
6. Drum Solo
7. Mystica / Mistreated / Mystica
8. Oceans Of Time
9. Circle Of The Oath
10. Fool Fool
11. Keyboard Solo / Carousel / Jam / Carousel
12. Tear Down The Walls / Nasty Reputation
13. Rock The Nation$25.99Vinyl LP - 3 LPs Sealed AWAITING REPRESS Buy Now