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ReckoningWhereas Murmur had been complex and painstakingly deliberate, the bands Bill Berry, Peter Buck, Mike Mills and Michael Stipe, along with producers Mitch Easter and Don Dixon, saw Reckoning as a chance to turn up the volume, tear up the rule book, and capture instead R.E.M.s on-stage mojo. Features the chart hit So. Central Rain and the college radio anthems Pretty Persuasion, (Don't Go Back To) Rockville and Time After Time (Annelise). Reissued here on audiophile quality 180g vinyl with original packaging.
2. 7 Chinese Bros.
3. So. Central Rain
4. Pretty Persuasion
5. Time After Time (Annelise)
6. Second Guessing
7. Letter Never Sent
9. (Dont Go Back To) Rockville
10. Little America$24.99180 Gram Audiophile Virgin Vinyl LP Reissue - Sealed Buy Now
ADAD-ANT-3017xThe Dream Syndicate
How Did I Find Myself Here?The Dream Syndicate are at the foundation of contemporary alternative music because back in 1981 at a time when most bands were experimenting with new technology, they choose to bring back the guitar. Their seminal album The Days of Wine and Roses (1984) has been cited as influential by artists from Nirvana to the Black Crowes. Known for their incredible live performances, the band toured with everyone from REM to U2, before splitting up in 1988.
In 2012 after years apart in solo projects, front man Steve Wynn reunited The Dream Syndicate to perform at a charity festival in Spain. The reunited band took everything in baby steps. A few shows here and there-including a still talked-about set at Wilco's Solid Sound Festival. The shows were exciting---for both the band and the eagerly awaiting fans, many of whom weren't even alive when the band were around the first time. The next step was to see if the excitement and newfound chemistry would extend to the studio. From the first day of recording it was apparent that the band was making an album that would live up its history and take their story into the present. Wynn says, In a way it feels like if The Days of Wine and Roses would have been made in 2017. Which is to say that it's true to what we did before but it's also a whole new thing.1. Filter Me Through You
3. Out Of My Head
4. 80 West
5. Like Mary
6. The Circle
7. How Did I Find Myself Here
8. Kendra's Dream$19.99Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
The Good Earth (Awaiting Repress)It took the Feelies six years to create their follow-up album to Crazy Rhythms. The Good Earth was co-produced by Feelies co-captains Glenn Mercer and Bill Million along with REM's Peter Buck, a Feelies admirer since his days as a record store clerk. The album was an early release on Coyote Records the label started by Steve Fallon of Maxwell's in Hoboken and featured the line-up that continues to this day.
Available for the first time in over a decade, deluxe packaging features liner notes by Jim Derogatis and Jim Sullivan and bonus material including demos, b-sides, EP tracks and new live recordings via download card inserts.1. On The Roof
2. The High Road
3. The Last Roundup
4. Slipping (Into Something)
5. When Company Comes
6. Let's Go
7. Two Rooms
8. The Good Earth
9. Tomorrow Today
10. Slow Down$18.99Vinyl LP - Sealed AWAITING REPRESS Buy Now
2 Steps From The Middle AgesPressed On Translucent Orange Vinyl
Packaging Includes Rare And Previously Unseen Photos From The Band's Photographer, Robert Toren
The Reissue Also Features Essays From Easter, Ken Stringfellow (The Posies, Big Star), And Franklin Bruno (The Village Voice, Salon.com)
Their final studio album - remastered and expanded! Following up 1987's Lolita Nation (whose reissue appeared on numerous year-end "best of" lists for 2016) would be no easy task for Game Theory. But, Scott Miller and company were certainly up for the task.
Re-teaming with producer Mitch Easter (R.E.M., Marshall Crenshaw, Velvet Crush), 2 Steps From The Middle Ages was released in 1988 and showed the band had no shortage of energy, experimentation, and excellent material.
The first pressing of this LP reissue, on vinyl for the first time since its initial release, comes on translucent orange colored vinyl. Packaging includes rare and previously unseen photos from the band's photographer, Robert Toren, as well as essays from Easter, Ken Stringfellow (The Posies, Big Star), and Franklin Bruno (The Village Voice, Salon.com).
The band's drummer, Gil Ray, who was involved in all aspects of the Game Theory reissue series including this title, sadly passed away earlier this year. This reissue is lovingly dedicated to him.
As the first track says, there's "room for one more, honey." That 1 more is 2 Steps From The Middle Ages.1. Room For One More, Honey
2. What The Whole World Wants
3. The Picture Of Agreeability
4. Amelia, Have You Lost
5. Rolling With The Moody Girls
7. In A Delorean
8. You Drive
10. Wish I Could Stand Or Have
11. Don't Entertain Me Twice
12. Throwing The Election
13. Initiations Week$20.99Colored Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
Crazy RhythmsBar/None is proud to release two classic albums by the Feelies, the much-loved group of hyperactive indie rockers from Haledon, New Jersey who did much to influence the sound of college radio in the 1980s.
Their debut album Crazy Rhythms is a masterwork of perfectly honed minimalist rock 'n' roll that leaps and darts into the corners of the listener's consciousness, a true sonic achievement that Rolling Stone called one of the 100 Best albums of the 1980s. Fans of the Velvet Underground, Wire and Brian Eno's early solo albums will surely appreciate their forces at work.
It took the Feelies six years to create their follow-up album. The Good Earth was co-produced by Feelies co-captains Glenn Mercer and Bill Million along with REM's Peter Buck, a Feelies admirer since his days as a record store clerk. The album was an early release on Coyote Records the label started by Steve Fallon of Maxwell's in Hoboken and featured the line-up that continues to this day.
Available for the first time in over a decade, deluxe packaging features liner notes by Jim Derogatis and Jim Sullivan.1. The Boy With the Perpetual Nervousness
2. Fa Ce-La
3. Loveless Love
4. Forces At Work
5. Original Love
6. Everybody's Got Something to Hide (Except Me and My Monkey)
7. Moscow Nights
8. Raised Eyebrows
9. Crazy Rhythms$18.99Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
UNIM-ATO-0713xOld Crow Medicine Show
Carry Me BackATO Records and Old Crow Medicine Show are excited to announce the release of Carry Me Back. Carry Me Back is the band's fourth studio album and features 12 brand new tracks that sonically span the band's career while still pushing them forward in new directions as musicians and songwriters. The album was recorded at the legendary Sound Emporium studios in Nashville (O Brother, Where Art Thou?; REM's Document; Robert Plant and Alison Krauss's Raising Sand).
Carry Me Back was produced by Ted Hutt (Gaslight Anthem, Dropkick Murphys, Flogging Molly). Hutt pushed the band in a whole new way that they hadn't been pushed before. "Ted Hutt asked us to really dig deep as artists, as songwriters, to get to the heart of the matter of these songs and, especially, not to settle for anything less than their greatness," recalls Ketch Secor. Secor is also very proud of the result of the band's songwriting efforts on the album, saying "For me, Carry Me Back is all about the songs, how they line up, intertwine, switch partners, and promenade home. Each of these songs was an accident waiting to happen."1. Carry Me Back to Viriginia
2. We Don't Grow Tobacco
4. Bootlegger's Boy
5. Ain't It Enough
7. Steppin' Out
9. Country Gal
10. Half Mile Down
11. Sewanee Mountain Catfight
12. Ways of Man$19.99180 Gram Audiophile Virgin Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
"When I was young, the artists that I really admired were the ones who always found a way to keep making music and expressing themselves," Matthew Sweet says on the occasion of the release of his 13th solo album Tomorrow's Daughter. "To me, those guys were the real artists, and I've tried to hold on to that attitude in my own work."
The seasoned singer/songwriter/producer/multi-instrumentalist is currently in the midst of a personal musical renaissance that's seen him produce some of the most compelling and ambitious music of his three-decade career.
That description applies to Tomorrow's Daughter, on which such instantly memorable new tunes as "Belong," "Run Away," "Lady Frankenstein" and "Out of My Misery" demonstrate his uncanny ability to tap into a bottomless well of pop history to craft music that's effortlessly catchy yet deeply personal.
Tomorrow's Daughter-the follow-up to the artist's acclaimed 2017 set Tomorrow Forever-is a persuasive testament to the enduring qualities of Sweet's adventurous, emotion-charged songcraft. The new album's 12 songs abound with the punchy melodic sensibility, playful sonic experimentalism and introspective lyrical insight that have been constants in his expansive catalog.
Tomorrow's Daughter is the product of a burst of creative inspiration that followed Sweet's 2013 return to his native Nebraska, where he reestablished his Black Squirrel Submarine home studio. This period yielded 38 brilliant new songs, 17 of which appeared on Tomorrow Forever. It instantly became clear that this potent body of work merited a follow-up release, hence Tomorrow's Daughter.
"It just sort of became my next record," Sweet says of Tomorrow's Daughter, which like its predecessor is released via his own Honeycomb Hideout imprint but this time distributed by MRI / Sony. Both albums feature Sweet's current touring band, comprised of guitarist Jason Victor (also a member of the recently-reformed Dream Syndicate) and his longtime rhythm section of bassist Paul Chastain and drummer Ric Menck (also known for their own acclaimed work with Velvet Crush).
"When I put together Tomorrow's Daughter out of what I'd recorded, the 12 songs totally made sense to me in sequence," Sweet explains. "I enlisted some of the people around me, friends and family, to listen to everything I'd recorded and pick their favorites, and everyone pretty much agreed on what was the top stuff. I think it stands up as a separate record, and as a time capsule of the time that we made it."
The distinctive musical and lyrical qualities that illuminate Tomorrow's Daughter have been hallmarks of Matthew Sweet's work since he began making music as a high school student in his native Lincoln, Nebraska. While attending the University of Georgia in Athens, Georgia, he became active in that town's burgeoning underground music scene, as a member of the now-legendary indie combos Oh-OK and Buzz of Delight, and in collaborations with R.E.M.'s Michael Stipe and Chris Stamey of The dB's.
A demo recorded with producer Don Dixon led to solo deals with Columbia (which released Sweet's debut album Inside in 1986), A&M (1989's Earth) and finally Zoo, which issued his commercial and creative breakthrough Girlfriend in 1991. Girlfriend won raves from critics and established him with a wide international fan base that continues to support him today.
Sweet continued to reveal new layers of songwriting depth and sonic creativity on his subsequent efforts Altered Beast, the spin-off EP Son of Altered Beast, 100% Fun, Blue Sky on Mars and In Reverse. His musical gifts continued to shine into the new century with Kimi Ga Suki, Living Things, Sunshine Lies, Modern Art and the Under the Covers series, a three-volume collaboration with Susanna Hoffs of the Bangles (Sweet also served as producer of the Bangles' 2011 album Sweetheart of the Sun).
"I can barely even fathom it," Sweet says of his massive body of recorded work. "But here I am, so I try to live up to whatever it is I've established so far. To do the work is the really important thing to me, but knowing that I'm connecting with people makes me happy. I've continued touring pretty consistently, and it's nice to see that people still care enough to come out to the shows. There seems to be a real emotional attachment for them, which means a lot to me."
Sweet is in the midst of an especially productive period that's seen him continue to generate new material at a prolific pace. He's already recorded
Wicked System of Things, a collection of new original songs to be released as a limited-edition vinyl LP in November 2018 for Black Friday Record Store Day, and is planning his next general-release album.
"I feel like I'm gonna be pretty active for awhile, and it's fun to be releasing a lot of music," he says. "I thought that there might be some resistance to putting out so much stuff, but that hasn't been the case, and that's encouraged me to keep going."
Now firmly ensconced, along with his wife, cats and vintage recording gear, in Nebraska after a two-decade-plus stretch in Los Angeles, Sweet works out of his home studio, which allows him to indulge his bottomless musical imagination, and to engage in long-distance collaborations with musicians in other locations-a method that he employed on both Tomorrow Forever and Tomorrow's Daughter.
"In some ways I think that moving has had a positive effect musically," he reflects. "I think it reconnected me a little bit to what it felt like when I was really young and music was new to me, and maybe that's reflected in the music. But it's hard to say, because making music is so internal for me that it's mostly in my head rather than my surroundings."
Meanwhile, Sweet's catalog continues to be a source of inspiration for longtime fans and new converts. For instance, the Intervention label is planning deluxe two-LP vinyl editions of Girlfriend, Altered Beast, Son of Altered Beast and 100% Fun, which will feature a wealth of rare and unreleased material. But it's creating new music that remains Matthew Sweet's main concern, and he continues to do so with renewed intensity.
"This feels like a really good time for me, and I feel lucky and grateful to still be doing what I love to do," Sweet asserts. "I feel like I'm in a totally positive place, and maybe moving has been a catalyst for that.
"When I meet young people and they ask for advice about a career in music, I always say, 'Do music because it's what you love to do, and because you'd do it no matter what happens,'" he concludes. "I've tried to keep that attitude about it, because that's always worked for me. I just try to keep doing my thing and keep believing."1. I Belong To You
2. Run Away
3. Lady Frankenstein
5. Out Of My Misery
6. Something Someone
7. Girl With Cat
8. Now Was The Future
9. Ever After
10. Show Me
11. Can't Pretend
12. Passerby$19.99Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
Bright Sunny SouthNonesuch Records releases Sam Amidon's label debut, Bright Sunny South in 2013. Produced by Amidon with his childhood friend and longtime collaborator Thomas Bartlett (a.k.a. Doveman) and legendary English engineer Jerry Boys (Buena Vista Social Club, Vashti Bunyan, R.E.M.) and recorded in London, the record features a band made up of Bartlett and multi-instrumentalists Shahzad Ismaily and Chris Vatalaro. Jazz trumpeter Kenny Wheeler also makes a cameo. Amidon himself not only sings but also plays banjo, fiddle, acoustic guitar, and piano on the album.
Amidon describes Bright Sunny South as a "a lonesome record" and a return to the more spare sound of his 2007 self-recorded debut, But This Chicken Proved Falsehearted: "There was an atmospheric quality to my last two records; those albums are like a garden of sounds," says Amidon, "but this one is more of a journey, a winding path. The band comes rushing in and then they disappear. It comes from more of a darker, internal space."
A longtime admirer of Boys' work, Amidon was particularly enamored of his recordings with Martin Carthy in the 1970s, as well as the Ali Farka TourÉ/Toumani DiabatÉ duet albums on World Circuit/Nonesuch: "Those are so beautiful. I listened to all of that. I loved the sense of documentation, the unadorned quality. Everything sounded so clear."
The Vermont-born and raised, London-based Amidon is known for his reworking of traditional melodies into a new form. In addition to country ballads and shape-note hymns, Bright Sunny South features interpretations of traditional and contemporary songs, including Tim McGraw's "My Old Friend" and Mariah Carey's "Shake It Off." The record also includes a version of "Weeping Mary," a shape-note hymn that his parents, Peter and Mary Alice Amidon, had recorded with the Vermont-based Word of Mouth Chorus for Nonesuch Records on the 1977 disc Rivers of Delight: American Folk Hymns from the Sacred Harp Tradition.
Bright Sunny South follows 2010's critically acclaimed I See the Sign, which earned Amidon praise from SPIN for his "quirky alchemy contrasting pretty sounds with violent lyrical undercurrents" and Pitchfork, which said, "[Amidon's] interpretations are so singular that it stops mattering how (or if) they existed before."
Prior to I See the Sign, which was released on the Iceland-based label Bedroom Community, Amidon released But This Chicken Proved Falsehearted (Plug Research, 2007) and All Is Well (Bedroom Community, 2008). In addition to his solo albums, Amidon has collaborated on performances pieces with musical polymath Nico Muhly, toured as part of Thomas Bartlett's group Doveman and the Brooklyn band Stars Like Fleas, collaborated with Beth Orton, and embarked on a series of live shows with the guitarist Bill Frisell.
Sam Amidon, sing, banjo, fiddle, acoustic guitar; piano (8)
Thomas Bartlett, piano, Hammond organ, Wurlitzer, Moog synthesizer; percussion & electric guitar (11)
Shahzad Ismaily, electric & acoustic guitars, electric bass, Moog bass; drums (2); shaker egg (7)
Chris Vatalaro: drums & percussion; flute (6); a taste of the Wurli (2)
Kenny Wheeler, trumpet (2, 5)
Doug Wieselman, clarinets (11)
Tyler Gibbons, electric bass (10)
Produced by Sam Amidon, Jerry Boys, and Thomas Bartlett
Engineered and Mixed by Jerry Boys
Recorded at Snap Recording Studios and Livingston Studios, London
"Weeping Mary" Engineered by Patrick Dillett at No Fat Studios, New York, NY
Violin and bass on "Streets of Derry" Recorded by Tyler Gibbons at Red Heart Studios, Marlboro, VT
Assistant Engineers: Ben Mclusky at Snap; Sonny at Livingston
All songs are traditional, reworked & arranged by Sam Amidon, except track 4 written by McEwan/Wiseman, arranged by Sam Amidon and Thomas Bartlett; track 8 by Cox/Carey/Austin/Dupri, arranged by Sam Amidon; track 11 by McCurry/Power, arranged by Sam Amidon and Thomas Bartlett
Design by John Gall
Executive Producer: David Bither1. Bright Sunny South
2. I Wish I Wish
3. Short Life
4. My Old Friend
5. He's Taken My Feet
7. As I Roved Out
8. Shake It Off
10. Streets of Derry
11. Weeping Mary$24.99Vinyl LP + Bonus 7 - Sealed Buy Now
Let Me Come Home (Discontinued)Broken Records' second album Let Me Come Home started out as a series of sketches and song fragments in frontman Jamie Sutherlands kitchen, later taking form in demo sessions at an old distillery grain store in the Scottish Highlands. The follow-up to 2009's Until The Earth Begins To Part, the album was recorded and produced by Tony Doogan (Mogwai, Delgados, Belle & Sebastian) at his Studio in Glasgow.
An idea started to form about the direction of the new record based on several films and albums that I became gradually obsessed with at that time. Watching the widescreen emptiness of films Badlands, Rumble Fish and East Of Eden, as well as records such as Bruce Springsteens Nebraska, Nick Caves Murder Ballads, Calexicos Feast Of Wire, and REMs early back catalogue all became a strong influence on the direction of the new songs. It was also during this time that the lyrical theme of the record started to take shape, thinking about what was going on around me in the form of fears and concerns over making relationships work, and a need for security. - Jamie Sutherland1. A Leaving Song
2. Modern Worksong
3. Dia dos Namarados!
4. The Motorcycle Boy Reigns
5. A Darkness Rises Up
7. I Used To Dream
8. You Know Youre Not Dead
9. The Cracks In The Wall
10. Home$16.99Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
After a limited self-financed release, this self-titled album can be seen as the proper debut by Indigo Girls. The album immediately boosted them up the charts, earning them a Grammy back in 1989, eventually reaching platinum in 1991. Featuring the complementing songwriting of Emily Saliers and Amy Ray and guest vocals by R.E.M.'s Michael Stipe, the album is a showcase for jangling folk-rock, beautiful balladry and poetic lyrics.
In the wake of the new acoustic song-based styles of Suzanne Vega, Tracy Chapman and 10,000 Maniacs, Indigo Girls would manage to garner respectable mainstream success and maintain their rabid core following throughout the three decades after this release.1. Closer To Fine
2. Secure Yourself
3. Kid Fears
4. Prince Of Darkness
5. Blood And Fire
6. Tried To Be True
7. Love's Recovery
8. Land Of Canaan
9. Center Stage
10. History Of Us$34.99180 Gram Audiophile Virgin Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
REDI-YEP-62812xSoft Boys, The
Underwater MoonlightSwarming hymns of 2nd generation psychedelic pop mastery, The Soft Boys' two most influential and groundbreaking albums are finally back in print via Yep Roc Records. Main man Robyn Hitchcock, along with demon guitarist Kimberley Rew, bassist Matthew Seligman and drummer Morris Windsor manage to bottle '60s guitar pop, shake it up with caged teenage fury and cut it all with a healthy dose of lyrical levity. A Can of Bees and Underwater Moonlight, seen as fatally un-hip when originally released would go on to be seen as seminal albums and become catalysts for '80s jangle pop and college rock, directly inspiring band's like R.E.M. and The Flaming Lips.1. I Wanna Destroy You
2. Kingdom of Love
3. Positive Vibrations
4. I Got the Hots
5. Insanely Jealous
7. You'll Have to Go Sideways
8. Old Pervert
9. Queen of Eyes
10. Underwater Eyes$17.99180 Gram Audiophile Virgin Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
REDI-YEP-2713xSoft Boys, The
A Can Of BeesSwarming hymns of 2nd generation psychedelic pop mastery, The Soft Boys' two most influential and groundbreaking albums are finally back in print via Yep Roc Records. Main man Robyn Hitchcock, along with demon guitarist Kimberley Rew, bassist Matthew Seligman and drummer Morris Windsor manage to bottle '60s guitar pop, shake it up with caged teenage fury and cut it all with a healthy dose of lyrical levity. A Can of Bees and Underwater Moonlight, seen as fatally un-hip when originally released would go on to be seen as seminal albums and become catalysts for '80s jangle pop and college rock, directly inspiring band's like R.E.M. and The Flaming Lips.1. Give It To The Soft Boys
2. The Pig Worker
3. Human Music
4. Leppo and the Jooves
5. The Rat's Prayer
6. Do the Chisel
7. Sandra's Having Her Brain Out
8. The Return of the Sacred Crab
9. Cold Turkey (John Lennon)
10. School Dinner Blues (Live)
11. Wading Through A Ventilator (Live)$17.99180 Gram Audiophile Virgin Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
March 16-20, 1992March 16-20, 1992 is the third release from the alt-country pioneers Uncle Tupelo, named in reference to the five-day span in which the album was recorded. Produced by R.E.M.'s Peter Buck at John Keene Studios in Athens, GA, the almost entirely acoustic 15-song set is split equally between material written by Jay Farrar and Jeff Tweedy and traditional Appalachian folk songs.
Although the album's originals offer up early warnings of the growing differences between the two gifted songwriters with Farrar's earnest fare and Tweedy's more nihilistic leanings, the pristine sounding March 16-20, 1992 single-handedly re-energized rock's return to traditional country origins and forever solidified Uncle Tupelo as the boldest and brightest purveyors of the alt-country movement.1. Grindstone
3. Wait Up
5. Shaky Ground
6. Satan, Your Kingdom Must Come Down
7. Black Eye
9. I Wish My Baby Was Born
10. Atomic Power
11. Lilli Schull
13. Fatal Wound
15. Wipe the Clock$24.99180 Gram Audiophile Virgin Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
Back To Forever (Awaiting Repress)Since the release of her critically acclaimed 2010 debut album 'Catching a Tiger', expectation has been steadily growing for the hugely talented, enigmatic rock-singer's follow up. 'Back To Forever' is Lissie's 2nd studio studio album.
Produced by Garret Jacknife Lee (REM, Bloc Party, Snow Patrol) in Topanga Canyon LA, the record sees Lissie return on blistering form, writing a collection of stunningly frank and beautifully crafted tracks showcasing her captivating and heartfelt voice which has never sounded better.
Lissie grew up in Rock Island, Illinois, near the Mississippi River, speaking her mind and writing songs from an early age. Her full-length debut, 'Catching a Tiger' which was co-produced by Bill Reynolds of Band of Horses and Jacquire King (Kings of Leon) was released in 2010 and won her widespread critical acclaim. Festival performances (including Glastonbury, iTunes Festival, Bonnaroo, Coachella and Lollapalooza) television appearances and film/TV song placements followed. Along the way, Lissie also released a live CD/DVD of her sold-out show at London's Shepherds Bush Empire, racked up more than five-million cumulative views for her live videos of songs like Lady Gaga's 'Bad Romance', Kid Cudi's 'Pursuit of Happiness' and Metallica's 'Nothing Else Matters', collaborated with cult hip-hop artists Schoolboy Q and ASAP Rocky for their hit track 'Hands on the Wheel' and developed her own brand of special edition Mezcal.1. It's The Habit
2. Further Away (Romance Police)
4. They All Want You
6. I Don't Wanna Go To Work
7. Mountain Top Removal
8. Love in the City
9. Bet on You
10. Cold Fish
11. Can't Take It Back
12. Back to Forever$16.99Vinyl LP - Sealed AWAITING REPRESS Buy Now
More RainM. Ward has released a string of acclaimed solo albums over the past
several years, along with five LPs with Zooey Deschanel as She & Him
and a 2009 collaborative album with My Morning Jacket's Jim James
and Bright Eyes' Conor Oberst and Mike Mogis under the moniker
Monsters of Folk. In addition to his celebrated work as a musician,
Ward is an accomplished producer, handling those duties for such
luminaries as Mavis Staples, Jenny Lewis, and Carlos Forster as well as
his own musical projects.
More Rain, Ward's eighth solo affair, finds the artist picking up the
tempo and volume a bit from his previous release, 2012's A Wasteland
Companion. Where that record introspectively looked in from the
outside, More Rain finds Ward on the inside, gazing out. Begun four
years ago and imagined initially as a DIY doo-wop album that would
feature Ward experimenting with layering his own voice, it soon
branched out in different directions, a move that he credits largely to
his collaborators here who include R.E.M.'s Peter Buck, Neko Case,
k.d. lang, The Secret Sisters, and Joey Spampinato of NRBQ. The
result is a collection of upbeat, sonically ambitious yet canonically
familiar songs that both propel Ward's reach and satisfy longtime fans.1. [More Rain]
2. Pirate Dial
3. Time Won't Wait
5. I'm Listening (Child's Theme)
6. Girl From Conejo Valley
7 .Slow Driving Man
8. You're So Good to Me
11. Little Baby
12. I'm Going Higher$18.99Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
Temporary People (Awaiting Repress)Temporary People is the second LP by Joseph Arthur And The Lonely Astronauts, a NYC-based collective. Arthur, along with guitarists Kraig Jarret Johnson (The Jayhawks) and Jennifer Turner (Fur Slide, Natalie Merchant), drummer Greg Wieczorek (Twilight Singers) and bassist Sibyl Buck, descended upon the Catskill wilderness to conjure what Arthur testifies as a fully-realized, awesome explosion of rock and roll. The best and truest things are born out of necessity, Arthur explains. I hung onto the recording of this album like a man in the middle of the ocean would to a a piece of wood floating by, you can hear it in the songs and you can hear it in the band pulling together. This album is the sound of survival. The follow up to 2007's Let's Just Be, Temporary People finds the Astronauts steeped in rattling anthems (Faith, Temporary People), unearthly rock revivals (Dead Savior, Look into the Sky) and classic country inspired hymns (Say Goodbye, Turn You On).
Jo is one of those rare writer-performers where you get the sense, whatever your belief, that something greater is being channeled through his music and voice. Like Patti Smith, Grant Lee Phillips, Thom Yorke, he trances and the voice, the meaning, becomes bigger than him, bigger than a few pop chords or words strung together. It touches something very deep and universal. - Michael Stipe, R.E.M.1. Temporary People
3. Say Goodbye
4. Dead Savior
5. Look into the Sky
6. Sunrise Dolls
7. Dream is Longer than the Night
8. Heart's A Solder
9. Turn You On
10. Winter Blades
12. Good Friend$12.99Vinyl LP - Sealed AWAITING REPRESS Buy Now
Sometimes the catalyst for creating great art is simply being in
the right place at the right time. For Arthur Buck, the new collaboration
between singer-songwriter Joseph Arthur and guitarist Peter Buck,
that place was Mexico, and that time was the fall of 2017. Specifically, a
little town off the Baja coast named Todos Santos, with the Sierra de la
Laguna mountains to the east and the bright blue Pacific stretching out
infinitely to the west. It is here that Buck has held the Todos Santos Music
Festival for the last several years, which he created in 2012 with his
wife, Chloe Johnson, shortly after R.E.M. called it a day. Among the many
artists who have played the festival is Joseph Arthur, who also happened
to leave behind a guitar-a Dobro, specifically-after his last appearance
there. And so last year he made the trek down to Todos Santos to pick up
the instrument. Which is where he ran into Peter Buck.
That was the beginning of Arthur Buck. The creative result of this
relationship is a vibrant 11-song collection that captures the spontaneity
at the heart of the project-right down to the 1-2-3-4 count off from Buck
that opens the record-with sounds and styles meshed together in an
easy, almost playful manner. Tchad Blake was brought in to mix the
proceedings, and the product is the new Arthur Buck-the outcome of a
shockingly productive burst of inspiration.1. I Am The Moment
2. Are You Electrified?
3. The Wanderer
4. Forever Waiting
5. If You Wake Up In Time
7. American Century
8. Forever Falling
9. Before Your Love Is Gone
10. Wide Awake In November
11. Can't Make It Without You$20.99Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
New York Before The WarJesse Malin returns in the New Year with a brand new album: New York Before The War, preceded by a single, Addicted.
Arriving almost five years on from his last record (2010's Love It to Life), Jesse's artistic ambitions for New York Before the War, were high: he knew he had to make it count. "I wanted to make a record that encompassed everything I've done, since I started with my hardcore band, Heart Attack, when I was twelve or or thirteen through bands like D Generation and then my solo career, but I also wanted to challenge the listeners who have been with me - and challenge myself."
Pared down from close to forty songs, New York Before the War album more than matches that ambition: A soundtrack to a life lived with meaning. "This is an era when music is so disposable," Malin worries. "People talk about the death of the album and even the death of rock & roll. But this is not just a shuffle of songs. There is a cinematic thread, a story."
Sessions for the album began in Virginia, Nashville before moving on to New York, finishing up at the Magic Shop in Soho. Players include such downtown New York all-stars as guitarist Derek Cruz, bassist Catherine Popper and drummer Randy Schrager. Don Dilego produced early sessions for the album in Virginia, and Malin and Cruz co-produced in New York. Brian Thorn, who worked on David Bowie's The Next Day, engineered and mixed the album.
Opening with The Dreamers, a haunting ballad that evokes both the alienation and the sense of deep connection that travel can bring (and very nearly became the album's title track), the album moves on through darker meditations like She's So Dangerous and Bar Life. Elsewhere, taut, upbeat rockers like Freeway (which features a blistering solo by the MC5's Wayne Kramer) and Turn Up the Mains (with Alejandro Escovedo on backing vocals) dictate the pace and Peter Buck contributes a vintage R.E.M.-style guitar part to I Would Do It For You, a tale of personal loyalty filled with longing and an aching sense of conviction.1. The Dreamers
3. Turn Up The Mains
4. Oh Sheena
5. She's So Dangerous
6. The Year That I Was Born
7. Boots of Immigration
9. Bent Up
10. She Don't Love Me Now
11. Death Star
12. I Would Do It For You
13. Bar Life$16.99Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
SuperchunkThe remastered LP features updated artwork and includes an 11 × 17 replica of an early Chunk show flyer, with photos and notes from the band on the reverse.
Mac shared his memories of these early days of Superchunk: When I listen to our first album now, other than cringing at some clams and the vocals and the juvenile attitude of the whole thing what was I angry about? You'll have to ask 21-year-old me because in my memory, we were having fun. I hear the accumulation of our influences, which I suppose is normal for a first album-weaving all the things you loved up to that point into your own first thing. The Buzzcocks, HÜsker DÜ, Dinosaur Jr, and Sonic Youth are all right there and what we were listening to. Hearing this record recently, though, I was surprised at how southern some of it sounds, and I think the influence of bands like Drivin' n' Cryin' and of course R.E.M. is there under the fuzz. I remember thinking the solo 4-track demo of Slack Motherfucker sounded like Tom Petty. I can't find it now to prove it to you, but take my word for it. I was living in NYC finishing school when we made this record, so rehearsals and recording were all rushed. I'm surprised we knew this many songs well enough to record them. Twenty-seven years later, we still play at least three or four of these songs live occasionally (one of them all the time ), which says something good about a few of the songs, anyway! We got so much better as a band, and as songwriters, that it's hard to even see this as any kind of template for what Superchunk would eventually be, but it's definitely where we were at in 1989/90.1. Sick to Move
2. My Noise
3. Let It Go
6. Slack Motherfucker
8. Down the Hall
9. Half a Life
10. Not Tomorrow$19.99Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
With Loving And Open ArmsTHE CAUSEY WAY IS NOT A CULT. They wish they were, but they are not. Sure, they are building a compound in a remote and undisclosed place, outside of Gainsville, Florida.(oops) Sure they offer Causey Blood (vegan) in communion cups before their services. And, of course, concert goers are encouraged to fill out membership nametags at their concerts. And it goes without saying that they're more than merely terrified about Y2K. But they are not a cult. They can't be because Alternative Tentacles Records can't sign cults; they're supposed to sign bands.
Causey formed the band in 1997. His requisites were stringent in recruiting his flock. The future parishoners were not allowed to have been in a band - not in their current life nor in prior lives. They made one exception though, they allowed Boy Causey to join the band. Boy, aka Brian, you see, is currently in a ROCK N ROLL band called Man Or Astroman? as well as serving in Servotron. Causey, believe it or not, used to be a professional skateboarder using the phony last name Stanton. He used to defy gravity with corporate sponsorship emblazoned upon his bosom (in interviews he would explain it was the closest feeling approximating that of walking on water) when one day he landed on his nose and finally saw the light. This revelation changed Causey. He wanted to start anew, he suddenly felt a greater purpose. He needed to remain true to his new self while at the same time start something new & exciting and not merely regurgitate putrid bile like some old Linda Blair movie. He dreamed that his followers would release doves in asking for an encore, rather than lighting lighters. He had a mission, and the mission was THE CAUSEY WAY.
Shortly after this period Jello Causey received a care-package from THE CAUSEY WAY. It contained a digital testament of their musical sacrifices, and some thoughtful Y2K preparedness items such as generic bleach, generic toothpaste, and enough cotton swabs to clean out an entire chapel-full of ears. Shortly after receiving the package, he quickly filled out his membership nametag, and the rest is history. (Jello has adamantly denied journalists' claims that he was 'brainwashed'.) It was exactly the type of new 'testament' wave, and pulpit punk that was missing in his life. (Some heathen have made references to Devo due to the presence of keyboards.)
Jello wasn't the only soul converted. Rain Phoenix (sister of late River Phoenix) quickly signed up and did penance by singing background vocals on With Open and Loving Arms. One openly famous musical celebrity superstar, Michael Stipe of the rock quartet REM, was so healed upon experiencing THE CAUSEY WAY service, that he invited the pulpit back to his house for a serving of grits to show his gratitude. The band declined.
Prior to their debut full-length sermon With Open and Loving Arms, THE CAUSEY WAY released an ep by the name of WWCD (that rose to #30 on CMJ's charts) and released an ep called Testimony for the skankedly trendy label Fueled By Ramen.(Less Than Jake's label) before releasing their latest one Causey vs. Everything on Alternative Tentacles in January 2001.1. Message From The Pulpit
3. Carousel Of Progress
4. What Power Is
5. The Electronic Church(You Sell God)
7. Fact Finding Mission
8. Light Of The World
9. Institutional Man
10. Bed Is Where
11. Love Me
12. Word Problems$7.99Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
Blackberry LightCharlie Mars has been a journeyman artist with all the ups and downs that entails. He has gone from uncertainty to redemption with major label releases and high profile gigs opening for the likes of R.E.M., KT Turnstall, Citizen Cope and Steve Earle, among others. Now, with the extraordinary new Blackberry Light, the Mississippi-based troubadour builds his distinctive musical approach employing supple grooves and ambient Daniel Lanois-inspired production to enhance the elemental force of his classic songwriting influenced by Bob Marley, Bill Withers and Dire Straits.
From the dreamlike Nothing But The Rain, to the shimmering Picture of An Island, Blackberry Light sees Mars delving deep within to offer insight and a path to self awareness and ultimately transcendence via a gracefully beatific distillation of folk, rock, and smooth acoustic soul. Mars took a modest tack towards overall recording of Blackberry Light, which took place at Austin's Treefort Studios under production prowess of Billy Harvey (Bob Schneider), looking to capture those perfect uncalculated moments where everything just clicks.
Upon the sessions' conclusion, Mars sought out one of his dream collaborators legendary producer/engineer/mixer Tchad Blake. The Grammy-award winner, known for his distinctive work with such artists as Elvis Costello, Richard Thompson and Sheryl Crow, ultimately agreed and helped give Blackberry Light much of its uniquely spacious warmth. Like any songwriter worth his salt, Mars employs his art as a channel towards personal discovery, candidly exploring all the human limitations, from pride and fear to cynicism and self-doubt, that stand in the way of his attaining true happiness. 180g gatefold vinyl.1. Let The Meter Run
2. How I Roll
3. Nothing But The Rain
4. Blackberry Light
5. Pacific Oceans
6. Back of the Room
7. I Do I Do
8. Picture Of An Island
9. Sometimes The Sky
10. Great Wall of Chine$17.99180 Gram Audiophile Virgin Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
A TreasuryA singular talent who passed almost unnoticed during his brief lifetime, Nick Drake
produced three studio albums of sombre beauty: FIVE LEAVES LEFT (1969),
BRYTER LAYTER (1970), and PINK MOON (1972). It's impossible to
keep count of the contemporary artists who cite Drake as an inspiration,
but a cursory round-up includes R.E.M., Paul Weller, Travis, Portishead,
The Coral, Coldplay, David Gray, Super Furry Animals and Beth Orton.
Along with household names of his creative lifetime - the Stones,
The Beatles, Marley, Hendrix - his albums have become an unofficial set text
for anyone passionate about music.
A Treasury is the definitive collection of 15 classic songs by Nick Drake.
With all the profile that he received earlier in the year for his 'rarities' release,
this is the perfect album for curious music lovers to pick up.1. Introduction
2. Hazey Jane II
3. River Man
4. Cello Song
5. Hazey Jane I
6. Pink Moon
7. Poor Boy
9. Place To Be
10. Northern Sky
12. Fruit Tree
13. Black Eyed Dog
14. Way To Blue
15. From The Morning$34.99Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
WildnessSnow Patrol is set to return with Wildness, their first album in seven years, which finds the band searching for clarity, connection, and meaning, while staying true to the melodic songwriting prowess that brought them to prominence. Wildness taps into something raw and primitive, and lead-singer and songwriter Gary Lightbody says of the album: "There are many types of wildness, but I think it can be distilled into two: the wildness of the modern age, all it's confusion, illogic and alienation and a more ancient wildness. Something primal, alive and beautiful that speaks to our true connectivity, our passion, our love, our communion with nature and each other. This is the kind of wildness the album is centered around. The loss of it. Trying to reconnect with it. To remember it."
Since their 1998 debut, Songs for Polarbears, Snow Patrol have racked up an impressive number of critical and commercial accolades, including 15 million global album sales, 1+ billion global track streams, 5 UK Platinum Albums, and are Grammy and Mercury Music Prize nominated. After their Fallen Empires tour ended in 2012, band members -which also include multi-instrumentalist Johnny McDaid, guitarist Nathan Connolly, bassist Paul Wilson, and drummer Jonny Quinn - decided to take a step back from the band, and focus on their own projects. Gary Lightbody continued his work with his Tired Pony side project with members of Belle and Sebastian, R.E.M, Reindeer Section and Fresh Young Fellows and moved to Los Angeles to begin writing songs for movies (including "This Is How You Walk On" for 2017's Gifted), and doing a number of high-profile co-writes with Ed Sheeran, Taylor Swift and One Direction. Taking this extended break from Snow Patrol proved to be a source of inspiration, and writing songs that were not pulled directly from his own psyche helped heal what Lightbody considered to be not so much writer's block as life block.
It's in this search for clarity and connection that these songs were written and refined. "I think it's the first record I've ever written that I haven't just asked a bunch of questions. I actually tried to figure out why I was unhappy, why I feel out of place, why I'm afraid," says Lightbody. "There's nothing really to protect myself for-- it's all in the album. I want to remember." This impulse was partially inspired by Lightbody's father, who is suffering from dementia. "I think the album is defined by memory in a lot of ways," says Lightbody, "including my father's loss of memory."
The songs are surefooted, displaying a newfound sense of self and purpose, and the rest of the band members rose magnificently to the occasion. The album is produced once more by the great Jacknife Lee, Snow Patrol's longtime producer and collaborator. "Life on Earth" opens the album with its mission statement, "this is something else, this is something else." "Heal Me" feels like an ancient hymn: "Finally, after way too many years of smashing my body to bits with booze, I met someone who helped me find my way back to health and clarity, says Lightbody. "This song is about her, that journey and is dedicated to her." "Empress," written for Lightbody's goddaughters, is fierce and heartfelt, with runaway drums and keen words of wisdom. "What If This Is All The Love You Ever Get?" is a heartstring-puller, posing the question nobody wants to ask. The last track, "Life and Death," is a rumination, and a human story of love and forgiveness- mostly self-forgiveness for Lightbody, demonstrating that perhaps everyone ought to take this long between albums to reflect long and hard before they write.
"Seamus Heaney, my favorite poet of all time, said at 71 that he was only discovering what some of his poetry means, and this is coming from a Nobel Prize-winning poet. It's a great testament to inspiration," says Lightbody. "Sometimes it takes you five years to write the thing. Like now. And you know for sure when you finish an album like that, where you've poured over every detail and put every atom of yourself into it, everything makes sense and I bet you I'm never not proud of this record."1. Life On Earth
2. Don't Give In
3. Heal Me
5. A Dark Switch
6. What If This Is All The Love You Ever Get?
7. A Youth Written In Fire
9. Wild Horses
10. Life And Death$29.99Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
TweenThe word "tween" implies a certain, very specific kind of awkwardness, and
those implications are rarely positive. But think about it like this: Something
"tween" is in the process of becoming something else, and there's a very
specific kind of beauty in that becoming. There's something rewarding in
recognizing and celebrating it-in meeting it halfway.
Tween is a collection of eight songs born, raised, and almost abandoned for
various reasons during the years between 2011's breakthrough Civilian and
2014's reinvention-of-sorts, Shriek.
Jenn Wasner and Andy Stack described these songs as "not emblematic of
a step forward, but a step sideways in time." In other words, they just didn't
make sense for album number five-which will happen at some point in the
future. But just because they didn't belong there doesn't mean they don't
belong anywhere. To wedge them onto Shriek would've been dishonest; to
orphan them would've been somewhere on the line between criminal and just
Now that your expectations are lowered, let's build them back up, because
Tween is full of gorgeous Wye Oak songs whose only crime was timing and
context, made by two people at the height of their game. At first these songs
sounded too disparate to me to be called an album, but the more Tween sank
in, the more it made sense: One minute Jenn and Andy are embracing their
floatiest Cocteau Twins instinct ("If You Should See"), the next they're back
in Civilian territory a bit ("No Dreaming"), and later they're slinky and
electronic and gorgeously '80s ("On Luxury").
The common thread: These are no castaways or cutouts. In fact, pound for
pound, Tween might actually be more directly accessible than Shriek. It should
join the pantheon of amazing not-albums of history whose names try to
downplay how good they actually are, like R.E.M.'s Dead Letter Office, The
Who's Odds and Sods, maybe even Dinosaur Jr.'s Whatever's Cool With Me.
Who knows what an album is at this point, anyway? Here's what Jenn and
Andy had to say: "We rejoice in being free to make what we like and release it
in a way that feels true, and you are free to enjoy it or dismiss it as it suits you.
We hope, of course, for the former. But-all gimmicks aside-we created this
thing with love and are so happy to share it with you, whoever you are."
-Josh Modell1. Out of Nowhere
2. If You Should See
3. No Dreaming
4. Too Right
5. Better (For Esther)
6. On Luxury
7. Trigger Finger
8. Watching the Waiting$17.99Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now