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  • Never Say Die! Never Say Die! Quick View

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    Never Say Die!

    Never Say Die! is the eighth studio album by British heavy metal band Black Sabbath, released in September 1978. It was the final Black Sabbath studio album to feature vocalist Ozzy Osbourne prior to his departure from the band in 1979.


    At the time of the recording of Never Say Die! the members of Black Sabbath were all heavily involved in drug and alcohol abuse. Prior to the recording of the album, vocalist Osbourne quit the band and was briefly replaced by former Savoy Brown and Fleetwood Mac vocalist Dave Walker. Some songs were written with Walker, and the new group even performed an early version of Junior's Eyes with different lyrics on the BBC programme, Look Hear. Osbourne eventually rejoined the band, refusing to sing any of the songs written with Walker. These particular songs were rewritten, including Junior's Eyes, rewritten to be about the then-recent death of Osbourne's father.


    We had a few internal problems, Osbourne admitted to Sounds. My father was dying, so that put us out for over three months with the funeral and everything. I left the band for three months before we got back together to record it.
    The album was recorded at Sounds Interchange Studios in Toronto. We went to Toronto to record it, and that's when the problems started said Tony Iommi. Why Toronto? Because of the tax, really. The studio was booked through brochures because people thought it might be a good one. We got there and it had a dead sound - totally wrong. We couldn't get a real live sound. So what we had to do was rip the carpet up and try to make it as live as we could. They were okay about it, but it took time to get it exactly right. There were no other studios available. Closing track Swinging The Chain features lead vocals from drummer Bill Ward, necessitated by Osbourne's frequent absences from the studio and inability to perform due to substance abuse.


    It's a combination of what we've all been through in the last ten years, said Osbourne. It's a very varied album. Like, we started out playing in blues clubs, because British blues - like John Mayall and early Fleetwood Mac - was the thing at the time. We were into a twelve-bar trip and early Ten Years After-style stuff. So it's part of that sort of trip. Then there's the heavy thing and the rock thing. It's not just steamhammer headbanging stuff all the way through We got rid of all our inner frustrations: what each of us individually wanted to put down over the years but couldn't because of the pressures of work. So we put a lot of painstaking hours into developing this album.

    1. Never Say Die
    2. Johnny Blade
    3. Junior's Eyes
    4. A Hard Road
    5. Shock Wave
    6. Air Dance
    7. Over To You
    8. Breakout
    9. Swinging The Chain
    Black Sabbath
    $17.99
    180 Gram Audiophile Virgin Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
  • A Light That Never Dies A Light That Never Dies Quick View

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    A Light That Never Dies

    On his second album A Light That Never Dies which will be released in North America via Forty Below Records, KaiL Baxley has returned with a hard hitting, lush and beautifully haunting collection of songs. Co-produced with Producer/Engineer Eric Corne whose recording credits include Lucinda Williams, Glen Campbell, Kim Deal and John Mayall, the album was recorded over the last year in three different cities.


    "We used a lot of really old gear on this one to capture that warm analog sound and preserve its truth," says KaiL about the album. "I'm proud of what Eric and I got out of the studio and I'm eager to get out on the road and share it with people."


    Hailing from the small backwater town of Willison-Elko - a town so small that most people in South Carolina don't even know where it is, much less the rest of the world. It's only claim to fame is soul legend James Brown, with whom Baxley shared an unlikely friendship as a child. Perhaps this was one of the leading influences in Baxley's soul-drenched music or perhaps it was the similar circumstances in which they were raised that fuels such deep emotion in an individual.


    Abandoned by both his mother and father as a small child Baxley was raised by his grandfather Woody until age 12. When he passed away, KaiL bounced from one living situation to another, rarely living in one place for more than a year at a time. It was in this constant migration that he found escape in a pair of old RCA headphones.


    "It wasn't all bad really," he recalls. "I got to know quite a bit of music from all different genres during that time period. I'd stay with my uncle for a while and pick up some Van Morrison; my auntie gave me the Stones;friends parents turned me on to gospel. Then I discovered hiphop and it was all over. I was hooked."


    This is the very apparent source of inspiration in KaiL Baxley's genre-bending music that also blends blues, indie rock, soul, gospel, and syncopated hiphop-style beats into a most exquisite and easily drinkable cocktail of sound - a sound that he has dubbed "Soul Swagger".


    KaiL's debut effort, Heatstroke/The Wind and the War, was presented as a double EP which displayed the yin and yang of his musical range. A surprise nominee for NPR's Album Of The Year, it received critical acclaim, including a debut at SXSW, where Baxley was tapped as, "One of NPR's top new artists" by All Songs Considered.


    "His voice falls somewhere between Joe Cocker and Bill Withers with a husky authority. The guy is a whiz-bang folkie-turned-soul-rocker and has a voice which can make you dance or which melts butter, depending upon the tune."

    - Frank Gutch Jr. / Segarini

    1. Light That Never Dies
    2. Mr. Downtown
    3. Tell the Falling Sun
    4. The Ballad of Johnny Steel
    5. Morning Light
    6. Better FeelN' Better Days
    7. Owe
    8. Still Wonder (Interlude)
    9. Troubled Souls
    10. Chasing James Dean
    11. Mirrors of Paradise
    Kail Baxley
    $18.99
    Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
  • Do Make Say Think Do Make Say Think Quick View

    $29.99
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    Do Make Say Think


    • 1998 Debut Album Issued On Vinyl For The First Time


    • Includes Screenprinted Jacket With Die-cut Window And Art Poster Insert


    Do Make Say Think self-recorded its self-titled debut album in Toronto in 1996-1997 and self released the record on CD. It made its way to Constellation's stereo in spring 1998, just as the label was getting off the ground; we immediately fell in love with its blend of space rock, dub, jazz, psych and motorik influences, and with the fact that it was such a great-sounding and fully realized DIY recording. Constellation re-released the album in more extensive and elaborate bespoke CD packaging in early 1999 and Do Make Say Think became the label's fifth release (and the first from a non-MontrÉal band).


    This terrific debut remained one of the very few titles on Constellation that was never issued on vinyl, as the label's limited resources in the early years, along with DMST's continuing output (they already had most of a sophomore record in the can when the debut got its CST release) conspired against a 2xLP pressing at the time. This historical aberration is now being remedied by a lovely deluxe double 180-gram edition of the album, with the CD's unique window-cut artwork and packaging translated to glorious 12-inch dimensions.


    One of the first groups to define a newly genre blending aesthetics and collective/collaborative ethics of (post-) rock experimentation in the Toronto scene, Do Make Say Think also presaged the city's wider indie music reawakening in the early 2000s. The band has released a superb, dynamic and continually inventive series of instrumental rock albums since their auspicious debut (in one of numerous testaments to their quality and consistency, the group's subsequent four albums received ratings of 7.9, 8.1, 8.1 and 7.8 by Pitchfork). DMST's debut album brims with twilight atmosphere, a rich sonic tapestry that weaves a traditional rock configuration, dual drummers and analog synth through a mixing-desk sensibility informed by dub, electronic music, hip-hop and psychedelia. Song titles like "Highway 420", "Dr. Hooch" and "Disco & Haze" nod to the preferred states of altered consciousness that presumably prevailed in the studio, but the results are far from shambolic, hazy or indulgent. The album's long form instrumental excursions are marked by a focus on methodically deployed structures, transitions, flourishes and details that succeed in feeling natural, unlaboured, supplely rhythmic and enchantingly levitational.


    Do Make Say Think has remained defiantly independent, uncompromising and artistically focused within a Toronto scene that's often tended towards hyperbolic fanfare and dubious careerism as the years wear on, continuing to be self-managed and self-produced throughout their long history. The band regrouped in late 2012(following a 3-year hiatus) to play Constellation's 15th Anniversary shows in Europe, where they absolutely killed. They have kept on with select festival performances and mini-tours in 2013. In celebration of the band's return to action - and to commemorate the 15th anniversary of Constellation's 1998 release of the debut CD - we couldn't be prouder to present Do Make Say Think on vinyl for the first time.

    1. 1978
    2. Le'espalace
    3. If I Only...
    4. Highway 420
    5. Dr. Hooch
    6. Disco & Haze
    7. Onions
    8. The Fare To Get There
    Do Make Say Think
    $29.99
    180 Gram Audiophile Virgin Vinyl LP - 2 LPs Sealed Buy Now
  • Goonies Soundtrack Goonies Soundtrack Quick View

    $19.99
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    Goonies Soundtrack

    Goonies never say die! The soundtrack to the 1985 adventure film, featuring Cyndi Lauper's fan favorite theme The Goonies 'R' Good Enough plus exclusive tracks by The Bangles, REO Speedwagon and Luther Vandross. It's the perfect treasure for vinyl fans!
    1. The Goonies 'R' Good Enough (Cyndi Lauper)
    2. Eight Arms To Hold You (Goon Squad)
    3. Love Is Alive(Philip Bailey)
    4. I Got Nothing (The Bangles)
    5. 14k (Teena Marie)
    6. Wherever You're Goin' (It's Alright) (REO Speedwagon)
    7. She's So Good to Me (Luther Vandross)
    8. What A Thrill (Cyndi Lauper)
    9. Save The Night (Joseph Williams)
    10. Theme from the Goonies (Dave Grusin)
    Various Artists
    $19.99
    Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
  • Technical Ecstasy Technical Ecstasy Quick View

    $17.99
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    Technical Ecstasy

    Technical Ecstasy continued the band's separation from its signature doom and darkness that had been such a trademark of the band's early career. While the album's lyrics dealt with topics such as drug dealers, prostitution, and transvestites, the music itself was seldom dark, and tracks like Rock 'n' Roll Doctor and It's Alright (the latter sung by drummer Bill Ward-a decision supported by Ozzy Osbourne), were very different from Black Sabbath's earlier recordings. Also, the band continued experimenting with keyboards and synthesizers more so than previous albums. The track She's Gone features orchestrations.


    Osbourne left the band briefly following the release of the album. He would eventually rejoin for the follow-up album, Never Say Die!.


    Gypsy, Dirty Women, Rock 'n' Roll Doctor and (briefly) All Moving Parts (Stand Still) were played live on the supporting tour.


    It's Alright was often covered live by Guns N' Roses, and included in their Live Era: '87-'93 album.

    The song was also featured in the 2010 film It's Kind of a Funny Story.


    The album was certified Gold on 19 June 1997 and peaked at number 51 on the Billboard Pop Album chart.

    1. Back Street Kids
    2. You Won't Change Me
    3. It's Alright
    4. Gypsy
    5. All Moving Parts (Stand Still)
    6. Rock 'N' Roll Doctor
    7. She's Gone
    8. Dirty Women
    Black Sabbath
    $17.99
    180 Gram Audiophile Virgin Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
  • 13 13 Quick View

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    13

    Black Sabbath's new studio album, one of the most anticipated metal releases of the year, already has a title. It will be called 13, so it is only fitting that the heavy metal band announced it today, on January 13th. We know now that it will be released this June (the exact date will be revealed later). The band also revealed what everyone wanted to know: who was the drummer that joined the recording sessions for the new album.


    The original Black Sabbath line-up, Ozzy Osbourne (vocals), Tony Iommi (guitar) and Geezer Butler (bass), recorded the album primarily in Los Angeles and were joined at the sessions by drummer Brad Wilk of Rage Against The Machine fame.


    13 was produced by Rick Rubin and the album will be released on Vertigo (worldwide) and Vertigo/Republic in the US. The new studio album also marks the band's return to Vertigo, their original label, apart from being the group's first studio album together since 1978s Never Say Die.

    1. End Of The Beginning
    2. God Is Dead?
    3. Loner
    4. Zeitgeist
    5. Age Of Reason
    6. Live Forever
    7. Damaged Soul
    8. Dear Father
    Black Sabbath
    $24.99
    180 Gram Audiophile Virgin Vinyl LP - 2 LPs Sealed Buy Now
  • Dog Beats EP Dog Beats EP Quick View

    $14.99
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    Dog Beats EP

    One of the most legendary and sought-after albums to ever come out of Detroit in the last 30 years, Dog Beats returns to record bins everywhere this spring! Representing the very first official release from the group that would become INSANE CLOWN POSSE, Dog Beats was released when the group were still in their teens and calling themselves Inner City Posse. This EP was sold on the streets of Detroit and original cassette copies now fetch an average of $2,000 on eBay. Despite a mail-order-only CD reissue around 2000, Dog Beats has been out of circulation ever since and has NEVER BEFORE BEEN RELEASED NATIONALLY! This is truly a historic piece of Midwest hip-hop that shows the humor, rap skills, and never-say-die enthusiasm that would eventually catapult INSANE CLOWN POSSE (the band changed their name shortly after the release of Dog Beats) into the worldwide pop culture and underground icons they are today. This is where the story of ICP begins ... and is a MUST OWN for all hip-hop fans!
    1. Ghetto Zone
    2. Wizard of the Hood
    3. Life At Risk
    4. Dog Beats
    Insane Clown Posse
    $14.99
    180 Gram Audiophile Virgin Vinyl 12 EP - Sealed Buy Now
  • Noctunes Noctunes Quick View

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    Noctunes

    Willis Earl Beal was born on the South Side of Chicago. He would never consider it home. An odd kid, he spent a lot of his youth talking with his grandmother, who would entertain his endless questions about the universe and encourage his love of drawing. He developed an obsession with Batman that would last well into his teenage years, when he enlisted in the U.S. Army as a form of vigilante training. Willis Earl Beal died on an army base in Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri. While in boot camp he was plagued with physical and mental abuse, health complications (which would later require surgery and the removal of large portions of his intestine) forced his discharge. He moved back home. "When that all broke down," Beal says. "I lost a piece of myself." Willis Earl Beal was born in Albuquerque, New Mexico. After a stint of homelessness there, he worked odd jobs and rented a studio apartment. Though he'd never learned to play any instruments, he began to record raw, lo-fi albums with hand-drawn covers that he'd leave at coffee shops around town alongside flyers seeking a girlfriend with his phone number written on them. Those artifacts would eventually find their way to the cover of Found magazine, then to Jamie-James Medina at XL Recordings. Beal signed with XL's Hot Charity imprint in 2012. Willis Earl Beal died in New York City. Despite the release of two critically well-received albums on XL-Acousmatic Sorcery, a collection of his early home recordings, and a fully orchestrated studio album he recorded in Amsterdam called Nobody Knows-he was a mess. "I'd drink myself into stupors," he says. "I'd walk around in the daytime, crying, then I'd go downtown. The police would bring me home in the morning." Willis Earl Beal was born on a lake twenty miles outside Olympia, Washington. After ending his contract with XL, Beal went to live in the woods, and began an artistic transformation entirely of his own design, from rough-edged outsider-art provocateur to the kind of mysterious crooner one might expect to haunt the outskirts of Twin Peaks. "People had all these ideas about what I was supposed to be," he says. "I had only ever wanted to make lullabies." Beal's development played out over two self-released EPs and a full-length album, and then Beal built the patient, ambient-leaning Noctunes. The album's twelve songs are moving and meditative, thoroughly soaked with mournful synth strings and simple lyricism that Beal says is intentionally minimalistic. "I wanted to create this persona that could say everything perfectly with very little," Beal says. "The record, to me, is a perfect record. I listen to that thing a lot, and it helps me." Willis Earl Beal has yet to be born. Critics and publicists defined him before he'd had a chance to define himself. Their expectations were inextricably linked with race and gender, two concepts Beal thoroughly rejects. Now, two extremely productive years removed from the spotlight, Beal doesn't feel pressure to define himself against anything. His new music is shockingly original, utterly confident, and as ephemeral as Beal himself. He levitates above definition, concerned only with self-discovery and truth-seeking. "I know it sounds falsely altruistic," he says. "But I think a simple voice like mine can serve as an example of some kind of freedom."
    1. Under You
    2. Flying So Low
    3. Like a Box
    4. Lust
    5. No Solution
    6. Stay
    7. Say the Words
    8. Love Is All Around
    9. Able to Wait
    10. Survive
    11. Start Over
    12. 12 Midnight
    Willis Earl Beal
    $24.99
    Vinyl LP - 2 LPs Sealed Buy Now
  • House Arrest House Arrest Quick View

    $13.99
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    House Arrest


    Sure The Doldrums and Worn Copy had some hits and humdingers on them, but Ariel Pink's 2002 album House Arrest never lets up. Its hit after hit after hit. Sorta like if you listened to your friends boom box mix tape from Top 40 radio around 1985.


    Think you've heard enough Ariel Pink? Well our favorite omnivorous media junkie from LA still has a few tricks left up his sleevelike the left-of-center House Arrest. Sure The Doldrums and Worn Copy had some hits and humdingers on them, but House Arrest never lets up. It's hit after hit after hit. Sorta like if you listened to your friend's boom box mix tape from Top 40 radio around 1985. Some people might think that sounds like a recipe for disaster. We say bring on the Doritos.


    Originally released in 2002 as part of a split double-CD set, then re-released with a couple of bonus tracks (including the multipart epic Netherlands) in 2006, House Arrest, much like every other Ariel Pink release so far, provides a small sampling of Ariel Rosenberg's self-recorded compositions, laid down on a trusty eight-track at home. Unlike so many warbling troubadours who seem to think the recorded-in-a-bedroom approach means a license to be maudlin, Rosenberg brings an exuberant joy to his work, finding something that a full band recording might actually kill the spirit of. The queasy tones and gently distanced verses of the opening Hardcore Pops Are Fun is instant put-a-smile-on-your-face stuff, helping to set the tone for the whole collection. The demented synth pop merriment of Flying Circles suggests an '80s nugget swathed in psychedelic haze, a gentle breeziness apparent on many other songs like the giddy Every Night I Die at Miyagis or the nervous funk of Alisa, easily one of the best songs on the album thanks to some exquisite vocals in particular. Though his connection to personal hero R. Stevie Moore is often mentioned, Rosenberg's role model here often seems to be Andy Partridge instead -- check out the distinctly XTC-like hiccupping on Gettin' High in the Morning, not to mention the quick herky-jerk arrangements. Rosenberg's preference to add layers of echo on his voice means sometimes his lyrics only emerge in fits and starts, but when they do they often are wryly witty or amusingly theatrical -- it fits with the amusing rock pose on the back cover, a knowing embrace of a trope. So when he sings about how West Coast calamities are worth more than the East Coast variety or how he's one of those egomaniacs who just want to siiiing, who's to deny how he plays around with the ideas?

    1. Hardcore Pops Are Fun

    2. Interesting Results

    3. West Coast Calamities

    4. Flying Circles

    5. Gettin' High In the Morning

    6. Helen

    7. Every Night I Die At Miyagis

    8. House Arrest

    9. Alisa

    10. Almost Waiting

    Ariel Pink's Haunted Graffiti
    $13.99
    Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
  • The Beginning The Beginning Quick View

    $34.99
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    The Beginning

    While the title of The E.N.D. was a play on words (standing for The Energy Never Dies), the Black Eyed Peas new album's title, The Beginning, refers to what is actually happening in the world right now, says will.i.am. The Beginning is symbolic of adopting new technologies, such as augmented reality, 3D, and 360 video. It's also about being experimental and taking songs we've liked from the past and playing around with sick, crazy beats. The first single from The Beginning, The Time (Dirty Bit), is as Fergie puts it, a celebration of this amazing time in our lives.
    1. The Time (Dirty Bit)
    2. Light Up the Night
    3. Love You Long Time
    4. XOXOXO
    5. Someday
    6. Whenever
    7. Fashion Beats
    8. Don't Stop the Party
    9. Do It Like This
    10. The Best One Yet (The Boy)
    11. Just Can't Get Enough
    12. Play It Loud
    Black Eyed Peas
    $34.99
    180 Gram Audiophile Virgin Vinyl LP - 2 LPs Sealed Buy Now
  • Nonagon Infinity (Awaiting Repress) Nonagon Infinity (Awaiting Repress) Quick View

    $19.99
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    Nonagon Infinity (Awaiting Repress)

    Pressed On Splattered Vinyl (Dark Vinyl With Light Splatters)


    "Nonagon infinity opens the door," sings Stu Mackenzie, frontman of Australian psych-rockers King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard. It turns out, though, that once the door's open, it never closes. That's because the Melbourne septet has ingeniously crafted what may be the world's first infinitely looping LP. Each of the nine, complex, blistering tracks on 'Nonagon Infinity' seamlessly flows into the next, with the final song linking straight back into the top of the opener like a sonic mobius strip. It's exactly the kind of ambitious vision that prompted Rolling Stone to dub the band "one of the most compelling collectives of art-rock experimentalists in recent years." But far from a simple conceptual experiment, the album is both an exhilarating shot of adrenaline and a remarkable feat of craftsmanship, the result of painstaking planning and an eye for detail years in the making.


    The roots of 'Nonagon Infinity' stretch back to 2014, when King Gizzard recorded their critically acclaimed album "I'm In Your Mind Fuzz," which was hailed by Pitchfork as "dense, intricately crafted, and most importantly, powerful."


    "We actually wanted to do this with 'Mind Fuzz,' but it just didn't work," explains Mackenzie. "We ended up writing songs that needed to be on that record but didn't connect to the others, so we had to abandon the idea, but the seeds were sown."


    To an outsider, it may have seemed like the band had completely given up on the concept, as the ever-prolific group quickly followed 'Mind Fuzz' with two more records in 2015, 'Quarters'-described by The Guardian as "the neon intersection of DIY psych and 1960s beach pop"-and the stripped-down 'Paper Mache Dream Balloon,' which earned praise from NPR to Stereogum. The truth, though, was that King Gizzard was honing in on the 'Nonagon Infinity' material the whole time, test-driving various tracks in their explosive live shows to prep for the monumental task of stitching them all together into one searing, multi-movement epic.


    "We really wanted to focus on things that felt good live," says Mackenzie. "We'd grab a little riff here or a little groove there, and we'd jam on them and form songs out of them, which was the opposite of 'Paper Mache,' where we were making songs in an acoustic, classic-songwriting kind of way. I wanted to have an album where all these riffs and grooves just kept coming in and out the whole time, so a song wasn't just a song, it was part of a loop, part of this whole experience where it feels like it doesn't end and doesn't need to end."


    Recorded at Daptone Studios in Brooklyn, the final result is an intricate and immersive listening experience. Lyrical refrains and musical motifs establish themselves and then submerge beneath the chaos, only to resurface unexpectedly later like familiar companions on a labyrinthine journey. Motorhead-grade riffs give way to King Crimson and Yes-levels of prog complexity, as songs churn through unusual time signatures and shifting rhythms with blunt force, laying waste to everything in their path.


    "I wanted it to feel like a horror or sci-fi movie," explains Mackenzie of the album's dark overtones. "The lyrics came as a stream of consciousness, all of these elements just falling out of my head as it was happening."


    "Big Fig Wasp" references a particularly macabre insect that must kill itself in order to perpetuate the species, while "Gamma Knife," with its 11/8-time drum solo, is named for a surgical tool that burns cuts into the skin, and "People-Vultures" plays like a sinister film soundtrack. Album opener "Robot Stop" pulls more directly from the band's recent experiences, inspired in part by their relentless work ethic and tour schedule, which has included festival performances at Bonnaroo, Glastonbury, Montreux Jazz & Roskilde as well as countless sold out dates in rooms across the USA, UK, Europe and Australia.


    "That song's about feeling overworked, like a bit of a robot that's just going to crash and die or something," he says with a laugh. "But you get yourself up and do it again and you robot on and you're alright. It was one of the early ones we wrote for the record, and I think when that song came together, everybody started to feel like were going to actually be able to pull off this never-ending album idea."


    To say they pulled it off would be an understatement. The record is a force to be reckoned with on par with the road trains Mackenzie references in the album's final track.


    "In the Australian desert, in the outback, there are what's called road trains, which are these massive trucks pulling heaps of carriages that can end up being 50 meters long," he explains. "They drive on the road really, really fast, and they're deadly, with these bars in the front to kill kangaroos and anything else in their path."


    'Nonagon Infinity' has opened the door for King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard, and they're barreling ahead with more momentum than ever before now. Much like those road trains, with a band this good, the safest place to be is onboard.

    1. Robot Stop
    2. Big Fig Wasp
    3. Gamma Knife
    4. People-Vulture
    5. Mr. Beat
    6. Evil Death Roll
    7. Invisible Face
    8. Wah Wah
    9. Road Train
    King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard
    $19.99
    Colored Vinyl LP - Sealed AWAITING REPRESS Buy Now
  • Universal Breakdown Blues Universal Breakdown Blues Quick View

    $18.99
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    Universal Breakdown Blues

    Universal Breakdown Blues is a modern urban blues/rock offering that reflects the soul of blues mastermind Popa Chubby. The album features 12 brand new tracks that capture the fire and energy of his live shows. It represents an entirely new level of his tempestuous, soulful playing. Popa puts it all into the simple language of music and invites us all to the party!


    'This is the blues now. It's the people's blues. The blues belongs to the people and I get to sing it. If there's one thing I want people to know about me, it's that I'm a survivor, says Popa Chubby. 'Here's my story: My dad died when I was seven. I was abandoned and raised myself. I moved to New York City when I was 18 and started playing music. I got a huge heroin habit and ended up strung out on the streets until I was in my early twenties. I started playing again and got away from drugs and never went back, and then I got into the New York blues scene of the early '90s, and here I am today.'


    Universal Breakdown Blues is a monumental blues album fueled by the veteran Popa Chubby.

    1. I Don't Want Nobody
    2. I Ain't Giving Up
    3. Universal Breakdown Blues
    4. The Peoples Blues
    5. Rock Me Baby
    6. 69 Dollars
    7. Over The Rainbow
    8. I Need A Lil' Mojo
    9. Danger Man
    10. Goin' Back To Amsterdam (Reefer Smokin' Man)
    11. The Finger Bangin' Boogie
    12. Mind Bender
    Popa Chubby
    $18.99
    Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
  • I'm Not The Devil I'm Not The Devil Quick View

    $24.99
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    I'm Not The Devil

    Cody 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
    10. Grey
    11. Church at Gaylor Creek
    12. Vampires
    13. Hand Me Down
    Cody Jinks
    $24.99
    Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
  • The Last Spire The Last Spire Quick View

    $37.99
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    The Last Spire

    Import


    And lo, Lee Dorrian, mouthpiece of Cathedral for 23 years, doth solemnly intone the death rites of this mighty British metal Titan. Born in the dying days of Thatcher's Britain, bonding over then-unfashionable, obscure names like Saint Vitus, Pentagram, Trouble and Dream Death, Cathedral's sole ambition was to record a demo tape. In fact they revolutionised doom metal, first pushing their influences into new avenues of grinding extremity, then pioneering groovier forms of '70s-indebted stoner doom.


    They've remained a reassuring and singular presence in our lives, building a rabid following worldwide with their wholly distinctive blend of rollicking British heavy metal, true doom, 70s hard rock, psych-folk, mad prog and spiky crust-punk. There was a worrying hiatus between 2005 and 2010 when some dared to wonder if Cathedral were coming back at all - but they re-emerged with 'The Guessing Game', an overflowing treasure chest of weird and wonderful goodies exploring new, bold variations on their craft. So when news came that Cathedral really were approaching the Endtyme, it was a shock.


    Personally speaking, this is the album I've been waiting to do since the first one (their landmark 1991 debut, Forest of Equilibrium), it almost feels like we made our second album last in some respects. We actually recorded a lot more material but decided to sacrifice many of the tracks to make the overall album feel more complete in its nihilism. I don't like happy endings, I never have. So many good films are ruined by happy endings and I didn't want that to be the case with Cathedral, it was my dream to bring everything full circle. Says Lee Dorrian.


    Clearly there was new impetus for reconnecting with that early spirit of doleful abjection, of sinister obsessions and lamented desires; on 'The Last Spire' Cathedral are literally doomed. We are commiserating the celebration, and in what thrilling style.

    1. Entrance to Hell
    2. Pallbearer
    3. Cathedral of the Damned
    4. Tower of Silence
    5. Infestation of Grey Death
    6. An Observation
    7. The Last Laugh
    8. This Body, Thy Tomb
    Cathedral
    $37.99
    180 Gram Audiophile Virgin Vinyl LP - 2 LPs Sealed Buy Now
  • The Last Spire The Last Spire Quick View

    $29.99
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    The Last Spire

    And lo, Lee Dorrian, mouthpiece of Cathedral for 23 years, doth solemnly intone the death rites of this mighty British metal Titan. Born in the dying days of Thatcher's Britain, bonding over then-unfashionable, obscure names like Saint Vitus, Pentagram, Trouble and Dream Death, Cathedral's sole ambition was to record a demo tape. In fact they revolutionised doom metal, first pushing their influences into new avenues of grinding extremity, then pioneering groovier forms of '70s-indebted stoner doom.


    They've remained a reassuring and singular presence in our lives, building a rabid following worldwide with their wholly distinctive blend of rollicking British heavy metal, true doom, 70s hard rock, psych-folk, mad prog and spiky crust-punk. There was a worrying hiatus between 2005 and 2010 when some dared to wonder if Cathedral were coming back at all - but they re-emerged with 'The Guessing Game', an overflowing treasure chest of weird and wonderful goodies exploring new, bold variations on their craft. So when news came that Cathedral really were approaching the Endtyme, it was a shock.


    Personally speaking, this is the album I've been waiting to do since the first one (their landmark 1991 debut, Forest of Equilibrium), it almost feels like we made our second album last in some respects. We actually recorded a lot more material but decided to sacrifice many of the tracks to make the overall album feel more complete in its nihilism. I don't like happy endings, I never have. So many good films are ruined by happy endings and I didn't want that to be the case with Cathedral, it was my dream to bring everything full circle. Says Lee Dorrian.


    Clearly there was new impetus for reconnecting with that early spirit of doleful abjection, of sinister obsessions and lamented desires; on 'The Last Spire' Cathedral are literally doomed. We are commiserating the celebration, and in what thrilling style.

    1. Entrance to Hell
    2. Pallbearer
    3. Cathedral of the Damned
    4. Tower of Silence
    5. Infestation of Grey Death
    6. An Observation
    7. The Last Laugh
    8. This Body, Thy Tomb
    Cathedral
    $29.99
    Vinyl LP - 2 LPs Sealed Buy Now
  • Pete Townshend's Classic Quadrophenia Pete Townshend's Classic Quadrophenia Quick View

    $25.99
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    Pete Townshend's Classic Quadrophenia

    As a leading icon of the British music revolution of the 1960s, Pete Townshend made his name by creating the power chord, smashing guitars onstage, and penning anthems of teenage rebellion like My Generation.


    Now, at almost 70 years old and half a century after he penned the archetypal rock lyric Hope I die before I get old , Townshend has created a classical version of one of The Who s landmark albums Quadrophenia for a symphony orchestra, opera singer and choir.


    The new symphonised version of Quadrophenia, an album originally released by The Who in 1973, was orchestrated by Rachel Fuller, a professional composer, orchestrator and singer-songwriter in her own right and also the partner of Pete Townshend.


    It will be released by the Deutsche Grammophon label, internationally renowned for its repertoire of classical and opera music, and launched next summer with a world premiere concert at the Royal Albert Hall, performed by the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and London Oriana Choir.


    The project is the latest chapter in Townshend s lifelong mission to break the three-minute mould of the traditional pop song and take rock music to a higher artistic level. In the 1960s he defined the concept of the rock opera with Tommy, taking it a stage further with Quadrophenia.
    Conceived and written by Townshend in 1973, Quadrophenia went on to become a feature film and a theatre production, and was performed in its entirety on The Who s most recent live tour. For the last three years Townshend has worked closely with Rachel Fuller on brand-new arrangements for orchestra, soloists and choir.


    Recorded with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra in October 2014 at London s legendary Air Studios, the new incarnation of this classic rock opera is conducted by Robert Ziegler and features popular British tenor Alfie Boe on vocals, with Townshend himself on electric guitar and performing cameo vocal roles. Townshend will reprise his roles at the live world premiere at the Royal Albert Hall in London on 5 July 2015, alongside the RPO, Ziegler, Boe and other star guests.


    The rock superstar began work on the project as part of his plan to leave a legacy of all his work arranged for orchestra as sheet music, for future generations to enjoy. Townshend hopes the new work will go on to become a regular part of the orchestral repertoire and boost attendance at classical concerts.


    A lot of major symphony orchestras are in trouble because their audience is getting old and the younger audiences prefer softer stuff, such as film soundtrack music, he explains. I think that Quadrophenia would reinvigorate their audiences and bring in people who might not otherwise go to see a symphony orchestra perform without lights and fireworks and a movie screen.


    Rachel Fuller, who was born in the year Quadrophenia was first released, admits she had never heard The Who s album until several years after she first met Townshend in a London recording studio, while he was rehearsing for The Who s 1996 tour of that album and she was working with Ute Lemper.


    I loved it as soon as I heard it about ten years ago, she says. For me it's been an act of love to orchestrate it for Pete. It's also been a joy to work on because it is very orchestral by nature, even as a rock album, so it was very easy to arrange for an orchestra. And I've remained really faithful to the original tracks because he's the composer and I want to honour his work.

    1. I Am The Sea
    2. The Real Me
    3. Quadrophenia
    4. Cut My Hair
    5. The Punk And The Godfather
    6. I'm One
    7. The Dirty Jobs
    8. Helpless Dancer
    9. Is It In My Head?
    10. I've Had Enough
    11. 5:15
    12. Sea And Sand
    13. Drowned
    14. Bell Boy
    15. Doctor Jimmy
    16. The Rock
    17. Love Reign O'er Me
    Pete Townshend
    $25.99
    Vinyl LP - 2 LPs Sealed Buy Now
  • Abandoned Abandoned Quick View

    $19.99
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    Abandoned

    Boston's most devoted and steadfast hardcore band, Defeater knows what it takes to remain credible in a scene where fans demand both unapologetic, in-your-face power and intense emotional honesty. For Defeater and their die-hard fans, this honesty is key, and with their Epitaph debut Abandoned, Derek Archambault (vocals) and fellow band members have created their masterpiece. Carrying on the narrative thread they have built across four previous albums, Abandoned is the band's most powerful and uncompromising album to date, powered by a renewed sense of artistic ambition and a plot twist no one could have expected. Defeater has never sounded more bleak and intense. The seething black-hole hardcore songs that served as finales "Cowardice" and "Bled Out" on Travels and Letters Home just barely touch the full-throated primal desperation on display in the first track here, and the momentary respite halfway through on "Borrowed And Blue" only makes the utter collapse that follows more punishing. This is the first album where the entire band was involved from the ground up, says Archambault, and that let Defeater push itself to a new level of discipline and depth.
    1. Contrition
    2. Unanswered
    3. December 1943
    4. Spared In Hell
    5. Divination
    6. Borrowed & Blue
    7. Penance
    8. Remorse
    9. Pillar Of Salt
    10. Atonement
    11. Vice & Regret
    Defeater
    $19.99
    Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
  • Terry Riley: In C (Pure Pleasure) Terry Riley: In C (Pure Pleasure) Quick View

    $34.99
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    Terry Riley: In C (Pure Pleasure)

    If ever there were a popular work of minimalism, one that stated its purpose so clearly it could not be mistaken, Terry Riley's legendary composition In C is the one. It is a work that needs no explanation for its pulsing sequences of pitch all centering around the 53 phases of no duration played on the note and its performances have been numerous--even if there have been relatively few recordings of it. The Bang on a Can all-stars have recorded perhaps the most innovative version of the work thus far, after Riley's own, which was issued in the 1960s on Columbia's long defunct Odyssey label. This version reads minimalism as popular music and popular music as, finally, classical. The Bang on a Can version is outrageously wonderful. This single repeated note, meditatively engaged and then played upon in modulation, is taken by Bang on a Can and torn apart, with gritty, urban vision, rock & roll energy, and pure New York street smarts. Using a wide array of instruments (from piano, vibes, glockenspiel, cello, Wu man's pipa, clarinet, mandolin, soprano saxophone, electric guitar, marimba, chimes, and bass) for 45 minutes, this mind-flexing composition is moved through the sequence of all these instrumentalists, each coloring it just a bit, moving it a tad further outside and into the future, the dynamics shift subtly and change, direction becomes fluid, and the drama becomes white-knuckle tense after such a meditative beginning and then releases again.


    This is the creation of language, tonal, timbral, and spatial. There is an architecture at work in this version that erects small towers of meaning in sound and piles them atop each other until a sonic Tower of Babel is finally fully erected. The pulse never stops; it never disengages no matter which instrument or group of instruments enters or leaves the fray. It is there, constant, always being born and always dying and being transformed, reincarnated as some other sound, some other phrase, but always identified by the pulse. This is more hypnotic than any rock & roll, and more powerful than any Beethoven symphony is taken in with openness. This is music -- ultimately made by a truly gifted and disciplined ensemble that share a singularly optimistic vision for modern music -- that can, and will, change your life.



    Musicians:



    • Terry Riley (conductor, saxophone, organ)

    • Margaret Hassell, Lawrence Singer (oboe)

    • Darlene Reynard (bass)

    • Jon Hassell (trumpet)

    • Jerry Kirkbride (clarinet)

    • David Shostac (flute)

    • Stuart Dempster (trombone)

    • Edward Burnham (vibraphone)

    • Jan Williams (marimba)



    Recording: 1968 at Columbia's 30th Street Studio, New York, by Fred Plaut and Russ Payne

    Production: David Behrman

    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.


    This title is not eligible for discount.

    1. In C
    Terry Riley
    $34.99
    180 Gram Audiophile Virgin Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
  • Psychic Temple II Psychic Temple II Quick View

    $19.99
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    Psychic Temple II

    It may seem hard to imagine a place where indie rock visionaries like Sufjan Stevens and Castanets' Ray Raposa could meld minds with the genius of Brian Wilson, where death metal pioneer Paul Masvidal might wield his legendary six-string chops on a blissed-out soul ballad, where adventurous young jazz players like Kris Tiner and Devin Hoff share credit with Mars Volta keyboardist Ikey Owens and singer/songwriter Aaron Roche.


    Long Beach composer, producer and multi-instrumentalist (not to mention truck driver) Chris Schlarb has not only imagined such a place but has now made it manifest for a second time. Released by Asthmatic Kitty, Psychic Temple II is a labor of love, envisioned by Schlarb to bring his most far-ranging inspirations to life - as he puts it, "a dream ensemble that could never actually exist." The ensemble's sophomore release was painstakingly constructed over more than a year with the cooperation of some of the most progressive musical minds from a staggering variety of genres.


    "I love interesting juxtapositions, where you bring together people from different communities," Schlarb says. He cites iconoclastic predecessors like Bill Laswell's ever-changing group Material, which once brought together a young Whitney Houston with jazz legend Archie Shepp and future Soundgarden and Red Hot Chili Peppers producer Michael Beinhorn to cover a song by Hugh Hopper of English prog-rock pioneers Soft Machine. On 2010's Psychic Temple, Schlarb assembled a 29-member ensemble that included Minutemen bassist Mike Watt, vocalist Julianna Barwick, and pianist Mick Rossi of the Philip Glass Ensemble.


    "It seems like a crazy combination of people," Schlarb says, "but they're all just musicians. Why not bring them all together? It may not always work, but it's always worth reaching further."


    Psychic Temple II reaches beyond the long-form experiments of its predecessor for a more tightly focused yet conceptually dense collection whose songs are no less exploratory for their briefer durations. "I never see the point in continuing to regurgitate," Schlarb says of the new album's unique direction. "What was natural at that time would now feel contrived. I have to keep moving forward."


    Schlarb also includes three cover songs by composers who share his boundary-demolishing mindset: Joe Jackson's "Steppin' Out," Frank Zappa's "Sofa No. 2," and Brian Wilson's "'Til I Die," a gorgeous, lesser-known Beach Boys song that features vocals by Sufjan Stevens, Castanets' Ray Raposa, and Cryptacize's Nedelle Torrisi.


    Psychic Temple had its origins in Create (!), a large improvising ensemble with which Schlarb used to perform. The free-form group would often incorporate multiple drummers, a concept that Schlarb decided to pursue in a more composition-oriented setting. No matter how much Psychic Temple mutates from track to track, the rhythmic possibilities of its two drummers (in this case, Tabor Allen and Andrew Pompey) remain intact.


    Schlarb's imaginative leaps are evidenced from the outset of Psychic Temple II, on the intoxicating opening track, "Seventh House." Featuring the sinuous vocals of Sarah Negahdari, who recently served as touring bassist for Silversun Pickups, the song weaves together lyrical and musical references to Neil Young's "Will To Love," to the Art Blakey & the Jazz Messengers album Pisces, and to Sheena Easton's notorious Prince-penned pop hit "Sugar Walls."


    Then there's "The Starry King Hears Laughter" and "She Is the Golden World," two songs that pay simultaneous homage to poet William Blake and jazz legend Bill Evans; or "Solo in Place," Schlarb's attempt to filter classic soul through his own "weird prism," a missing link between the Isley Brothers and the Alan Parsons Project that features guitar wizard Paul Masvidal of the death metal bands Death and Cynic.


    Despite such a mind-blowing array of talent from the farthest reaches of the musical spectrum, Psychic Temple II is a surprisingly cohesive album, a testament to Schlarb's clear controlling vision. "One of the fundamental flaws of modern music is the idea of the record as a pastiche," he says. "With hip-hop and R&R records starting in the '90s, you had ten tracks with ten different producers so every track sounded completely different. There was no aesthetic where you could just put on a record and listen to it beginning to end. I admire people who are control freaks."


    Schlarb has wielded control over a number of vastly different projects himself. The New York Observer called his debut solo album, Twilight & Ghost Stories, "40 minutes of avant-garde bliss," while Interoceans, recorded with experimental jazz duo I Heart Lung, was chosen by NPR as one of the top five jazz albums of 2008. He composed the score for Nicklas "Nifflas" Nygren's video game Nightsky and has received grants from the Canada Council for the Arts and Meet the Composer. In 2001, Schlarb founded the eclectic Sounds Are Active record label, which has released music by the likes of Nels Cline, Mike Watt, and Castanets.

    1. Seventh House
    2. The Starry King Hears Laughter
    3. Solo In Place
    4. Bird In The Garden
    5. 'Til I Die
    6. She Is The Golden World
    7. Steppin' Out
    8. All I Want Is Time
    9. Sofa No. 2
    10. NO TSURAI
    11. Hyacinth Thrash Quarter
    Chris Schlarb
    $19.99
    Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
  • Visuals Visuals Quick View

    $23.99
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    Visuals

    Mew frontman Jonas Bjerre has worked on the projections for the band's live shows since their early days. Usually, the Danish trio finish an album and Bjerre gets to work on the visuals. For their seventh record, though, the singer decided to turn things upside down, working on the visuals first and seeing if they informed the music. The resultant record feels like a culmination for one of rock's most ambitious and inventive groups: Visuals is where Bjerre and his bandmates, bassist Johan Wohlert and drummer Silas Utke Graae Jørgensen, join the dots of a career that has spanned over two decades. "We do everything on this album ourselves," says Bjerre. "We produced it ourselves, I did the artwork, I'm doing the visuals. Visuals felt like a fitting title. I like the idea that each song has a visual aspect to it somehow."


    Mew have a tradition of, as Bjerre puts it, hiding away in a cave for three or four years between albums. The tour that accompanied 2015's +- album found the band reaching a creative peak that they felt was too exhilarating to be dampened by a period of extended cave-dwelling. They arrived home with demos that had been written on the road and the spark was lit. They wanted to break the cycle and make an album quickly. "We just felt like, "if we do it the normal way, it's gonna be another three or four years before we get to do it again'," says Bjerre. "If you keep doing it like that, ultimately you make a handful of albums and then you're ready for retirement." The trio wanted to make an album spontaneously, keeping the energy they'd generated on the road going.


    They set to work in Copenhagen and started knocking the demos they'd written on tourbuses and in hotel rooms into shape. At the same time, new songs were emerging in reaction to what was going on around them. Mew aren't a political band but couldn't help but be affected by rolling news and the death of an icon. "It was pretty dark last year, so some of the darkness in the lyrics comes from that. You definitely get the feeling that things don't last forever when someone like David Bowie dies." Visuals was completed in just under a year - what Bjerre describes as an "incredible" feat for a band used to periods of prolonged tinkering. "Spending less time on it, you can still maintain the feeling you had when you first wrote it," says Bjerre.


    Bjerre doesn't know where Mew songs come from. He finds it hard to pin down his lyrics, his melodies, himself. It's what makes his band so special, that thrill that songs could go anywhere, that understated verses could suddenly rocket skyward, anthemic choruses could implode into beautiful soundscapes or sophisticated grooves could be crushed like a tincan. "I don't consciously know why the songs come out the way they do," says Bjerre. "It's a lot of trial and error for us. Even though a song is on an album, it keeps growing because we get to go out and perform it for an audience. I like the thought it can keep growing. It's never really finished."


    Visuals is Mew at their most compact, their chemistry at its most potent. With only one song over five minutes, it's their most concise album. Bjerre says there was no need for a grand, overarching concept. Each song on Visuals represents its own little chapter and story: nothing needed to be overly long. "Each album is like a collection of thoughts and ideas that fit the time we're in," he says. "They're like little diary entries, except they're a little bit more veiled perhaps. To me, albums are memories of times in my life."


    The song that led the way was the slow-building euphoria of Nothingness And No Regrets. Bjerre says that Mew lyrics often have two or three different meanings, and the opener is a reflection on life and death at the same time as "imagining this team of people trying to accomplish something and ultimately failing." The expansive 80s-style pop of The Wake Of Your Life is about legacy and what's left after you've gone. "These are things you think about more and more the older you get." It started out as a synth-pop track with lots of programming before taking on a different shape when the band added guitars over the top. "We try to change the method of how we reach the destination all the time cos if you do things the same way all the time, the results will often be very similar," says Bjerre.


    The discordant stomp of Candy Pieces All Smeared Out came about after Bjerre went back over some demos he'd made as a youngster on an Omega 500. "Some of them were interesting sonically so I kept some of the programming. We built the song on top of this really weird 8-bit computer track." The song sums up the emotional to and fro and ca

    ptivating contrariness at the heart of Visuals: it's an album that's both nostalgic and contemporary, that looks back whilst marching forward.

    The blissful glide of In A Better Place is a prime example of the impulsive environment that the songs were written in, a drumbeat by Jorgensen inspiring Bjerre to write a song immediately, whilst the atmospheric rock of Ay Ay Ay was based around a choir part that Bjerre had come up with a few years ago. All of the vocal parts were recorded in the booth that Bjerre had constructed in his apartment in Copenhagen. "I like waking up in the middle of the night and feeling inspired by something and being able to go in my booth and just sing it," he says.


    Bjerre says that the celebratory groove of Learn Our Crystals "is one of our weirdest songs." Poppy and fantastical, it had a familiar feeling to the singer as soon as he wrote it. The soulful sway of Shoulders has an R'n'B feel to it, whilst Bjerre had earmarked the mesmerising intricacy Carry Me To Safety as the album's closer as soon as it'd been written. "I just like how it twists and turns," he says. "It's a reflection on life and being in a band, what it means to be in a band, dedicating so many years of your life to this thing."


    Twenty years into their career, Mew have the irrepressible ebullience of a band on their debut album. Visuals feels like the beginning of a new chapter. "Mew is what I always come back to, it's a companion to my life. It's always been there, as long as I can remember. It's a big part of the footprint that we'll leave behind," says Bjerre. Mew march on: this is the sound of a band seizing the moment.

    1. Nothingness and No Regrets
    2. The Wake of Your Life
    3. Candy Pieces All Smeared Out
    4. In a Better Place
    5. Ay Ay Ay
    6. Learn Our Crystals
    7. Twist Quest
    8. Shoulders
    9. Videos
    10. Zanzibar
    11. Carry Me to Safety
    Mew
    $23.99
    Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
  • Dad Country Dad Country Quick View

    $17.99
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    Dad Country

    Nashville songwriter Jonny Fritz's work ethic and boldness have paid off in spades. It's been a big year for Jonny with opening stints for Alabama Shakes, Deer Tick, Dawes, Shooter Jennings and kudos from CMT and Rolling Stone, among many others. He signed his deal this week (he actually signed the deal with gravy at Nashville landmark Arnold's Country Kitchen), and his third full-length album, Dad Country, is set for release on April 16, 2013.


    Produced by Jonny and Dawes' Taylor Goldsmith, recorded at Jackson Browne's Los Angeles studio and finished up in Music City, USA; this breakthrough album balances Jonny's trademark earthy humor and unfiltered worldview with some of his darkest material to date. Co-producer Goldsmith says, "Funny as they can be at moments, his songs access realities and experiences that we're all familiar with but sometimes fail to consider the depths of."
    While immersing himself in the music world, Jonny began running marathons from Philadelphia to Barcelona and pounding out his signature leather works - the dog collars and guitar straps - seen all over Nashville and half the musical universe. He found himself in NYC for year trying to save a relationship, and its slow, painful unraveling (and demise) inspired Dad Country's bleakest, heartrending tracks, including "All We Do Is Complain" and "Have You Ever Wanted to Die."


    These days, life has never been better for Jonny Fritz. He's back in Nashville again and putting down roots- and has even gone and bought himself a house. "It just keeps getting better. Now, the band is getting paid, I'm getting paid, everybody's happy, and we're packing 'em in when we play."
    "This is the dream life. I couldn't really ask for anything else."

    1. Goodbye Summer
    2. All We Do Is Complain
    3. Holy Water
    4. Social Climbers
    5. Ain't It Your Birthday
    6. Shut Up
    7. Wrong Crowd
    8. Have You Ever Wanted to Die
    9. Fever Dreams
    10. Trash Day
    11. Suck In Your Gut
    12. Instrumental
    Jonny Fritz
    $17.99
    Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
  • Rarities Vol. 1: The Covers Rarities Vol. 1: The Covers Quick View

    $15.99
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    Rarities Vol. 1: The Covers

    No Use For A Name is one of THE most successful and prolific acts to come out of the 90's skate-punk scene. But there's a lot more to it than that. Just have a look at their family tree, it has bands like Spazz, Foo Fighters, and Suicidal Tendencies to count among its branches. No really, think about that: the dude from that infamous grindcore band was in NUFAN?!? Their long, unpredictable journey has been full of twists, turns, and alternate routes that led them to be one of the best-selling outfits of their genre. They've done it all: Warped Tour's main stage, MTV, a live record, and an even a recent greatest hits album entitled, All The Best Songs. Hey, you know you've made it when you finally get a greatest hits collection! Not bad for some goofy kids from San Jose who started out with a couple hardcore 7s

    Early No Use releases appeared on New Red Archives, a San Francisco punk label operated by Nicky Garratt of the UK Subs. Believe it or not, in the late 80's it actually made sense that they would be labelmates with Reagan Youth, Social Unrest, and Christ On A Crutch. An AllMusic review describes their early material as, hulking hardcore with mighty fists full of metal. Angry and Threatening. This was a gritty, hardcore punk band, known mostly for their growling vocals and dark lyrical themes. Then came the first unforeseen occurrence: frontman Tony Sly unexpectedly developed into a proficient songwriter and mastered melody like few punk bands can ever do. Nobody knows where those gifts come from and you never see it coming, but suddenly No Use For A Name was starting to make music that people actually liked.

    As is natural, the band kept evolving, and things changed in a major way for the band when they signed to Fat Wreck Chords in the mid-90's. Their 8-song Fat debut, The Daily Grind EP, drew comparisons to Bad Religion and was a marked step up, but it was 1995's, ¡Leche con Carne!, that would cement No Use For A Name as a successful band for years to come. The album was their best yet and bore a hit song (Soul Mate) that landed them on alternative radio charts, which, for a scrappy punk band, was a complete deviation from industry norms. Stranger yet, was that they made a music video and MTV even played the damn thing! What followed obviously was commercial success in the form of six-figure album sales, another anomaly in the world of indie-punk bands and something that would set the stage for later melodic punk bands like Blink 182, et al. From then on it was steady sailing with a string of successful records and tours from the band. Most notably was 1997's darker, and somehow faster, Making Friends; followed by 1999's hyper-catchy More Betterness!. It was during these halcyon days that Chris Shiflett held down 6-string duties for NUFAN before accepting an offer to join Foo Fighters on lead guitar.

    The years went by for the perennial punk powerhouse and the band did numerous world tours, amassing album sales that would eventually total in the 7 figures. Pretty remarkable when you think about it. The new millennium was also a fruitful time for the boys. It started in 2001 with the release of their Live In A Dive album, which was very successful abroad where people were especially hungry for No Use's live performances. In 2002 they released their poppiest effort, Hard Rock Bottom, which was stocked with upbeat tempos and radio-friendly melodies. Their most recent and seemingly final studio album came in 2008. Ironically titled The Feel Good Album Of The Year, the album was a tinge darker and more aggressive than their recent releases and the band reminded us all that their songs still had urgency and bite.

    After 25 years, No Use For A Name disbanded in 2012 when frontman Tony unexpectedly passed away. Anthony J. Sly (November 4, 1970 - July 31, 2012) died at home, in his sleep on a Tuesday morning, at age 41. Fat Mike-label head and long-time friend to Tony-was staggered by the news and offered, One of my dearest friends and favorite songwriters has gone way too soon. Tony, you will be greatly missed. No one could've predicted his passing, and needless to say, it shook the very foundation of the Fat Wreck family and the underground music community as a whole. Tony was loved and respected by a wide variety of artists and musicians, and nowhere is that more evident than the roster of contributors to The Songs of Tony Sly: A Tribute; a compilation of NUFAN songs covered by bands like Bad Religion, Frank Turner, The Gaslight Anthem, Alkaline Trio, and many more. Bands from the Americas, Europe, Australia, UK, and even Israel contributed to this final chapter in the storied career of No Use For A Name. The collection will be released on October 29th, 2013, and all proceeds will go towards the Tony Sly Memorial Fund, which has been established to help Tony's wife Brigitte and their daughters, Fiona and Keira.

    1. Turning Japanese
    2. Hybrid Moments
    3. I've Heard
    4. Selwyn's Got a Problem
    5. Enjoy the Silence
    6. Badfish
    7. Dream Police
    8. Fairytale of New York
    9. Making Our Dreams Come True
    10. 1945
    11. Don't Cry for me Argentina
    12. The Munsters' Theme
    13. Beth
    No Use For A Name
    $15.99
    Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
  • Adrian Younge Presents: The Delfonics: Instrumentals Adrian Younge Presents: The Delfonics: Instrumentals Quick View

    $19.99
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    Adrian Younge Presents: The Delfonics: Instrumentals

    Linear Labs Now Brings You Adrian Younge Presents: The Delfonics In A Never Before Issued Instrumental Edition


    The Delfonics is the quintessential sweet-soul group. Hailing from Philadelphia, the crew formed in the mid-'60s, with the definitive original lineup as lead
    vocalist and songwriter William Hart, his brother Wilbert Hart, and mutual high-school friend Randy Cain (later replaced by Major Harris). With the help of
    producer/arranger Thom Bell-and with William's signature falsetto-the Delfonics set the tone for all other sweet-soul groups that would follow.


    Between 1968 and 1974, the Delfonics had twenty charting singles and won a Grammy for their massive hit Didn't I (Blow Your Mind This Time). Out of
    their twenty hits, William Hart wrote or co-wrote eighteen of them, thirteen with collaborator Thom Bell, like La-La Means I Love You, He Don't Really
    Love You, and Ready or Not Here I Come (Can't Hide From Love).After five albums, the Delfonics would break up for good in 1975. Brothers William and
    Wilbert parted ways and over the years often toured separately with different forms of the group. But over forty years after writing his first hit, lead singer
    and songwriter William Hart has put his unmistakable falsetto back on analog tape and reinvented the Delfonics brand for a new generation.


    Los Angeles producer/composer Adrian Younge envisioned a modern-day Delfonics album and pitched the idea to William Hart, who hopped a plane from
    Philly to L.A. and began work on a new album. Younge helped to reshape the Delfonics by bringing on board two excellent young vocalists, Loren Oden
    and Saudia Mills-as well as Om'Mas Keith on the single Stop and Look (And You Have Found Love)-to work alongside William. Adrian Younge is a
    self-taught multi-instrumentalist who traded in his MPC sampler for a carefully curated studio of authentic gear. Younge rocketed to international
    recognition after composing the original score for the film Black Dynamite and has since release ground-breaking projects including The Souls of
    Mischief's "There Is Only Now" and Ghostface Killah's "Twelve Reasons to Die" concept albums.


    Younge brings a unique perspective on modern rhythm and blues. I was studying Delfonics stuff for years, Younge reveals. I studied Delfonics to do the
    Black Dynamite stuff. I've been a fan, and I've just studied their music for so long that when I got the opportunity to do this, it just really blew my mind.
    From the very beginning, it was Younge's intention to create an old-school Delfonics vibe but offer a very hip-hop-informed perspective. There are
    distinguishing musical elements that Delfonics fans will recognize, like the electric sitar guitar, the French horn, string arrangements, and the tympani. I
    want people to expect something classic but not expect to hear the same thing rehashed, Younge says. I want to push it forward. William and I strived to
    push this forward.


    Younge now makes this breath-taking musical outing available once again on his own Linear Labs imprint.

    1. Stop And Look (And You Have Found Love) [Instrumental]
    2. Lost Without You (Instrumental)
    3. True Love (Instrumental)
    4. Silently (Instrumental)
    5. Enemies (Instrumental)
    6. To Be Your One (Instrumental)
    7. Stand Up (Instrumental)
    8. Just Love (Instrumental)
    9. So In Love With You (Instrumental)
    10. I Can't Cry No More (Instrumental)
    11. Lover's Melody (Instrumental)
    12. Party's Over (Instrumental)
    13. Life Never Ends (Instrumental)
    The Delfonics
    $19.99
    Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
  • Dawning Dawning Quick View

    $21.99
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    Dawning

    Might the time finally be right for Mouth of the Architect? For a decade, the Ohio band has largely been ghettoized to cult status, familiar to Midwestern kids or those paying more than casual attention to what's clumsily called "post-metal," at least post-Isis. Between 2004 and 2008, Mouth of the Architect released three rather convincing-- if sometimes haphazardly indulgent-- records of unified doom and grace. Dependent upon extreme dynamics and grand composition, with track lengths that ticked into the teens and albums that stretched past the hour mark, Mouth of the Architect seemed like a natural recipient of the same "brainy metal" laurels then distributed by outlets as illustrious as The New York Times.


    But the ascendance never came, and since 2008's teetering Quietly, the band instead lingered at the threshold of self-destruction. They released an EP in 2010, but, as a revealing Invisible Oranges look into the band's last half-decade suggests, they mostly tried not to die-- as a group, really, or as people. "Some of us were convinced that the end was coming, either the big picture or individually," drummer Dave Mann told Brad Sanders. "Some of us, me in particular, were in a downward spiral in a lot of ways."


    The appropriately titled new album Dawning is their first in five years and their first featuring bassist Evan Danielson. It's also their best work to date, a fully realized resurrection. Dawning showcases a band that now moves with an intricacy and immediacy that indicate just what Mouth of the Architect is: a veteran group comprising members with long rÉsumÉs, who've now gotten a chance to begin again and know what to do with it. A wonder of tension and release, Dawning is designed to throw listeners into tailspins and, then, to lift them above the mess. That drama not only reflects the survival of the band that stuck around long enough to make this album but also of a group that's now pushed past the cloister of post-metal: Despite the hardened visage of tough-guy screams, burly guitar tones, and Mann's aggressive drumming, Dawning is a compulsively likable record, full of anthems meant for memorizing and environments meant for immersion. (Hell, "Sharpen Your Axes" could pass for millennial Incubus.) If you've ever liked Isis there's plenty for you here; on the other hand, if you like, say, Abbey Road-- or any music that tries to outstrip the structure of a single song while not abandoning its magnetism-- Dawning deserves your time, too.
    Should the metal prefixes "progressive" or even "post-" suggest long-winded, self-invested excursions nestled within songs that require an almanac, scrap the notion for Dawning. Yes, these songs stretch between seven and 11 minutes each, but even the longest, centerpiece "How This Will End, hinges upon narrative thrust and musical selflessness. If there are any guitar solos here at all, they come toward the start and the finish of "How This Will End, when a neon electric tone arches over a mounting cavalcade of drums and bass. Rather than serve as breaks in the momentum, though, both passages lead tremendous swells that rise to meet the troika of vocalists in another instance of triumph. Not one moment among these 11 minutes seems squandered or lost, as the quintet keeps rising and falling, churning and rebuilding.


    Opener "Lullabye" establishes that principle from the jump, or as soon as traipsing acoustic guitar and twinkling piano concede to a heroic riff wrapped within three-part, gang-style harmonies. Mouth of the Architect move constantly between parts; at various points, they leap from near-silence to a quake viscous enough to make plenty of stoner metal sound thin, from guitar leads that suggest Chicago blues moan to math-rock redirection. Behind the kit, Mann serves as the expert rudder, keeping the songs steady even as he navigates the transfers. This constant swivel also depends upon the split vocal duties of Steve Brooks, Kevin Schindel, and Jason Watkins. They trade verses, flip-flopping between pristine radio rock leads and malevolent growls, sometimes only for a line at the time. They often share choruses, delivering them the sort of group-vocal abandon that hints at a darkened Danielson Family. Their singing-- here, more charged and urgent than it's ever been-- gives all of the band's moving pieces a through-line from one side to the other.


    Talk of the tide of intelligent or somehow otherwise-elevated heavy music hasn't faded during Mouth of the Architect's temporary absence. Though both Sunn O))) and the late Isis have only released one album since MotA's last one, the acceptance of and debate over nominally black metal acts such as Liturgy, Wolves in the Throne Room, Krallice and Deafheaven has kept that conversation current. Mouth of the Architect only nods to that au courant talking point during Dawning, most notably with the blizzard of tremolo guitars that open "It Swarms" and the clattering way the band emerges from an instrumental break during "Sharpen Your Axes". But at the very least, Dawning deserves mention alongside Deafheaven's Sunbather, a record that's most notable for its holistic approach to drama and romance and the complete cinema of itself. Mouth of the Architect has long written from a vantage of imminent apocalypse, a perspective Dawning does not forego. There's talk of collapsing systems and prevailing darkness, spent luck and idolized disrepair. But at record's end, when Mouth of the Architect's three singers trade and share lines about risking it all even if they come up short, it's hard not to hear a core of redemption and potential hope within the music itself. And after returning from the brink to make one of the year's most rapturous records, metal or post-metal or whatever, there had better be.

    - Grayson Currin (Pitchfork)

    1. Lullabye
    2. It Swarms
    3. Sharpen Your Eyes
    4. How Will This End
    5. Patterns
    6. The Other Son
    Mouth Of The Architect
    $21.99
    Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
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