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Jane From Occupied EuropeNoisy and experimental, Britain's Swell Maps experienced little commercial success during the course of their chaotic career, but in hindsight they stand as one of the pivotal acts of the new wave: not only was the group an acknowledged inspiration to the likes of Sonic Youth and Pavement, but their alumni - most notably brothers Nikki Sudden and Epic Soundtracks - continued on as key players in the underground music community.1. Robot Factory
2. Let's Buy A Bridge
3. Border Country
4. Cake Shop Girl
5. The Helicopter Spies
6. Big Maz In The Desert
7. Big Empty Field
8. Mining Villages
9. Collision With A Frogman
10. ...Vs. The Mangrove Delta Plan
11. Secret Island
12. Whatever Happens Next...
13. Blenheim Shots
14. A Raincoat's Room
15. The Stairs Are Like An Avalanche
16. New York$17.99Vinyl LP Reissue - Sealed Buy Now
A Trip To MarinevilleBrothers Nikki Sudden and Epic Soundtracks started the Swell Maps in the early 1970s while in their teens. The band's chaotic mix of arty experimentalism, garage primitivism, and punk rock gumption established a template for the British DIY post-punk movement of the late '70s and early '80s. The band's 1979 debut, A TRIP TO MARINEVILLE, perfectly captures the band's two disparate yet strangely compatible elements. Songs such as Spitfire Parade, Another Song, and the rousing opener H.S. Art burn with youthful abandon and a glammy, knowingly primitive cool. Yet by Don't Throw Ashtrays at Me and Bridge Head, the listener is presented with an almost completely different band, as improvised noise, clattering percussion, found sounds, and ambient piano soundscapes overtake the more straightforward rock elements that introduced the album. The hypnotic pulse of Krautrock creeps in on Full Moon in My Pocket and BLAM!! and the Sonic Youth blueprint is presented fully formed on Gunboat. For the Swell Maps, the call to arms of punk rock wasn't about empty gestures toward anarchy and social rebellion, but rather the notion of a personal revolution via the limitless possibilities of art. A Trip To Marineville perfectly captures this realization.1. H.S. Art
2. Another Song
3. Vertical Slum
4. Spitfire Parade
5. Harmony In Your Bedroom
6. Don't Throw Ashtrays At Me!
7. Midget Submarine
8. Bridge Head (Pt.9)
9. Full Moon In My Pocket
11. Full Moon (Reprise)
13. Adventuring Into Basketry
14. My Lil' Shoppes 'Round The Corner
15. Loin Of The Surf
16. Doctor At Cake
17. Steven Does
18. Bronze and Baby Shoes$17.99Vinyl LP Reissue - Sealed Buy Now
WomenWomen's self-titled debut touches upon Velvet Underground, Swell Maps and This Heat while not really having any obvious precursors. A lo-fi masterpiece cloaked in layers of vibrato and guitar wash. Women effortlessly mix noise, static and infectious hooks that manage to lean towards progressive psychedelia without pretense. The band is made up of Patrick Flegel, Matthew Flegel, Michael Wallace and Christopher Reimer and they reside in Calgary, Canada.1. Cameras
4. Black Rice
5. Sag Harbor Bridge
6. Group Transport Hall
7. Shaking Hand
9. January 8th
10. Flashlights$17.99Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
ADAD-NUM-2112xNikki Sudden and the Jacobites
TexasIn a year when overproduced rock-fluff flooded radio
waves, Texas-Sudden's 1986 solo debut for Creation-
blasted through the saccharin for a damaged and masterful
invocation at the imperfect alters of Chilton and Bolan,
sonic influences the Brit bore proudly on his velvet sleeve
throughout the course of his polarizing prolificacy. As the
increasingly splintered Rolling Stones cultivated "Harlem
Shuffle" cover cheese, the former Jacobite leader looked
to the ragged Exile On Main St. and Sticky Fingers roots
of his icons for a raw, 12-song predication melding tender
jangle and staggering swagger. Widely considered Sudden's
solo magnum opus, Texas is an exquisite mÉlange of the
off-kilter sub-terrestrial songwriter.
In founding Swell Maps, the post-punk prefacing
Birmingham art-snots, Nikki Sudden and his drumming
brother Epic Soundtracks charted new territory for racket
and corrosive guitar. But after folding Swell Maps at the
dawn of the '80s, Nikki Sudden plowed through another
decade's worth of terrifically fertile ground. Drawing on
his devotion to the Rolling Stones and T. Rex-alongside
guitarist Dave Kusworth as Jacobites, plus a cheekily named
cohort of British sidemen-Nikki Sudden cut a string of
raw, inspired rock 'n' roll records, etched with double-edged travel melancholia and hard-bitten punk dejection.1. Jangle Town
2. Death is Hanging Over Me
3. In Your Room
4. Glass Eye
5. Such A Little Girl
6. Broken Tooth
7. Dumb Angel
8. Basement Blues
9. Wedding Dress
10. When I Left You
11. Captain Kennedy's Lament
12. Deppers Bridge$24.99Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
ADAD-NUM-2310xNikki Sudden & The Jacobites
Dead Men Tell No TalesDead Men Tell No Tales takes a stripped-down turn with plaintive lyrical confessions as pretty as they are prescient, summoning Syd Barrett?s wild spirit through a seance of simple reverb burbles and acoustic incantations. Front-and-center vocals recounting love, loss and death's lurking presence are presented against airy guitar shimmer in a demented yin and yang seemingly forecasting the scarf-swathed, underground dandy man's abrupt fall nearly 20 years later. In the midst of such weighty tomes are less downtrodden peeks into the studio, where Sudden and his Jacobites are caught on tape in a few joyful fits and starts, adding another complex layer to this celebrated post-punk. In founding Swell Maps, the post-punk prefacing Birmingham art-snots, Nikki Sudden and his drumming brother Epic Soundtracks charted new territory for racket and corrosive guitar. But after folding Swell Maps at the dawn of the '80s, Nikki Sudden plowed through another decade's worth of terrifically fertile ground. Drawing on his devotion to the Rolling Stones and T. Rex - alongside guitarist Dave Kusworth as Jacobites, plus a cheekily named cohort of British sidemen - Nikki Sudden cut a string of raw, inspired rock 'n' roll records, etched with double-edged travel melancholia and hard-bitten punk dejection.1. When I Cross The Line
2. Before I Leave You
3. Dog Latin
4. Wooden Leg
5. Dog Rose
6. How Many Lies
7. Cupful Of Change
8. Kiss At Dawn$24.99Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
How We LostHow We Lost is actually a celebratory album. It's a reflective record and, in its own way, celebrates the Windsor For The Derby continuum that's been culled from their first release, Calm Hades Float in 1996 to their last, Giving Up the Ghost from 2005. Each of these recordings is a sequel to the next both musically and in narrative, especially since the band found themselves in constant dialogue about their body of work and the paths they'
d chosen due to the rerelease of their first two records Calm Hades Float and Minnie Greutzfeldt. Also a part of that ongoing dialogue were the records that the band found itself consistently re-visiting, Swell Maps, Section 25, Psychic TV and what it was that made those recordings timeless and resonate in a personal way to the band. The songs on How We Lost is about the ways they've changed over the years, the things they hold onto and what's been left behind.1. Let Go
3. Robin Robinette
4. Fallen Off The Earth
5. Hold On
8. What We Want
9. Good Things
10. Spirit Fade$14.99Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
ReflectionChalk Circle existed in the Washington, DC metro area punk/hardcore scene between 1981 and 1983. They were the first all-female rock/punk band to ever record and perform in DC, and in January of 2011 their recorded output will finally be available in one place: on the Re flection LP, released by both Mississippi Records and Post Present Medium. The 12 songs on this release are from compilations on Outside Records and WGNS, live shows and unreleased recordings. It also comes with a 16-page booklet compiled by guitarist/vocalist Sharon Cheslow that tells the Chalk Circle story in its entirety for the first time. The booklet features photographs, press clippings and extensive liner notes by renowned musician and producer Don Fleming, whose band Velvet Monkeys headlined Chalk Circle's first shows.
Chalk Circle, although personally part of the birth of hardcore as friends and fans of the Discord scene, musically never fit into the stringent rules of that scene. They sound like they were from a time where experimentation was rewarded, where new ideas were examined and transformed by people who were curious and excited to live in the moment. The ideas were then transformed again, when the moment changed.
In an interview by Alex Guiness in 1982, in response to a question about how to label Chalk Circle, vocalist/guitarist Mary Green answered, We'll create our own tag. For those who want a tag, well, think about the raw experimental U.S. punk of Flipper, Bush Tetras, and The Minutemen, or the innovative post-punk of Delta 5, The Swell Maps, Liliput, and The Slits. Think about the youthful energy of DC Hardcore and the enthusiasm of teenagers making music that comes from the heart and not from copying ri ffs from rock records. Think about the straight-laced nature of the nation's capital and the joy of creating your own culture. Think about the promise of punk to teenage women. Chalk Circle expresses all this through music that is spirited, unique, creative, powerful and fun.1. Re fection
2. Uneasy Friend
4. Private Lie
5. Turning Up The Collar
6. The Look
7. The Slap
8. Run So Far
9. Side By Side
10. Easy Escapes
11. High Stress
12. Subversive Pleasure$13.99Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
Blood // Sugar // Secs // TrafficHey, what's this? Well that, my friend, is the newest album from The
Gotobeds, entitled Blood // Sugar // Secs // Traffic. It's their second
full-length LP and their first for Sub Pop. Whoa, whoa, please slow down.
I'm already completely lost. What you just said sounded like a stream of
complete gibberish. Okay, I'll lay it out for you and if you have any
questions could you yell them at me? SOUNDS GOOD. The Gotobeds
formed vaguely around 2009 in Pittsburgh and play a mutant strain of rock
music that is often filed under punk, indie rock, or 99-cent discount bin.
WAIT, THE GOTOBEDS? I HEARD THEY WERE KNUCKLEHEADS! Only if
the knuckle is the part of the human body that contains the brains. Much
like their previous releases on underground stalwart labels like Mind Cure
and 12XU, this new album artfully slips intelligence and experimentation
into a dying art form. It's a harder feat than you'd think.
And sure, their live shows have often been compared to an all night party
where I feared for my life and the lives of everybody in the five block
radius, and their recorded output is akin to the sonic manifestos of four
men deprived of human love and raised on beer and Swell Maps, Mission
of Burma, and old Fall records. But what you get with The Gotobeds,
delivered in spades on this album, is smart, noisy rock with just the right
amount of stupid.
FAIR ENOUGH. SO HOW'D THIS GET MADE? It was recorded in bursts
over several months of 2015 in their friend My War Matt's basement in
Pittsburgh. Unlike previously, the songs were conceived and recorded in
blocks, which resulted in a more experimental feel. But this is no chin
stroking curate's egg. You like loud, double guitar leads? OF COURSE I DO.
WHO DOESN'T? You're in luck, because this album is carpeted with em,
thanks to Eli Kasan and TFP. On a song like 'Bodies,' it sounds as if
you've walked into the biggest Guitar Center, but, you know, not terrible.
Keeping it all locked down is the rhythm section of drummer, Cary Belback
and bassist, Gavin Jensen. They allow the downright prettiness of a song
like Red Alphabet to shine, and the lyrics on the anti-sexism thrash of
Crisis Time to punch through.
THIS ALL SOUNDS WONDERFUL, IS THERE ANYTHING ELSE I NEED
TO CARE ABOUT? Eh, probably not. Except that Tim Midyett (Silkworm,
Bottomless Pit, Mint Mile) and some bum (Protomartyr) are featured as
guest vocalists on Rope and Why'd You, respectively. Also, I'd be remiss
to not mention the fact that the band's live show is a testament to the
cathartic nature of speed, skill, repetition, noise, and red stage lights. If
you don't believe me, ask the bands they have played with, like Total
Control, Tyvek, or The Replacements. Also, they rep Pittsburgh harder than
anyone possibly could and come off better for it...which is saying
I THINK I UNDERSTAND. BLOOD // SUGAR // SECS // TRAFFIC IS THE
GREATEST ALBUM SINCE THE LAST GOTOBEDS RECORD? Yes. Now
please stop yelling. -Joe Casey, Protomartyr1. Real Maths/Too Much
3. Brass Not Rash
5. Why'd You
6. Red Alphabet
7. Cold Gold (LA's Alright)
8. Crises Time
10. Glass House
11. Amazing Supermarkets$17.99Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
Strict JoyThe Swell Season are Glen Hansard (from the Irish band the Frames) and Marketa Irglova (classically trained Czech pianist and vocalist). In 2007, Once, a film about two people meeting and falling in love on the streets of Dublin, became an indie phenomenon, as audiences everywhere responded to the unassuming charm of the two leads, Glen and Marketa, and the beautiful music they made together. On the way to going gold, the Once soundtrack brought the Swell Season onto the stage of the Academy Awards, where the band won the Best Original Song award, and into the hearts of the audience and host Jon Stewart. Since then they have toured to sold-out venues as the Swell Season, Once has become a perennial top DVD rental and seller, and now the film is in development for a Broadway musical to open early in 2010.
Now comes the much anticipated follow-up, Strict Joy, and from the first notes of first track Low Rising, the musical magic audiences found in Once is back. The band returns to map the rocky peaks and valleys of relationships in songs like the haunting I Have Loved You Wrong, a Marketa feature, and the driving, anthemic The Rain. A feature documentary will make the festival rounds this fall, covering the making of Once and Glen and Marketa's musical coming together, but in the meantime, the beautiful songs of Strict Joy will tell their story.1. Low Rising
2. Feeling the Pull
3. In These Arms
4. The Rain
5. Fantasy Man
6. Paper Cup
7. High Horses
8. The Verb
9. I Have Loved You Wrong
10. Love That Conquers
11. Two Tongues
12. Back Broke$19.99Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
An Argument With MyselfIn the symbology of Jens Lekmans songbook, motion is a means to stave off insanity or succumb to it and the songs on the An Argument With Myself EP deal with many types of movement, both big and small, from why he moved to Melbourne to the societal change/movement in his old hometown of Gothenburg to simple map directions.
The opening song and title track begins with this excellent Jens archetype, recounting an inner battle while walking home through the central business district of Melbourne, Australia. While on its face, Waiting For Kirsten seems to trace an ultimately futile odyssey to track down Kirsten Dunst while she films in Gothenburg, its really an attempt to work out the complex relationship one has with ones hometown. The comfort and disappoint of whats changed, and what seems to never change. Alternately, the horn driven New Directions brings a slightly manic roadmap of directions to any place but here and any time but now. The songs are witty, literal, and impeccably location-specific, and theyre all heading somewhere as a means to either go crazy or keep from doing so.
With more fractured textures that combine horns, flutes, string swells and arpeggiated guitars, the opening of the EP finds Jens in constant state of transition, musically, as well. However, as An ArgumentWith Myself comes to a close the arrangements get looser,more reggae-tinged and relaxed, like a music box winding down. For a moment, the motion almost stops. For now.1. An Argument With Myself
2. Waiting for Kirsten
3. A Promise
4. New Directions
5. So This Guy At My Office$14.99Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
180 gram, 45 RPM Mono 2LP + Poster
Daniel Romano refuses to be confined to narrow classification - in fact, out of necessity he created his own genre: Mosey Music. With the release of Daniel's fifth solo record Mosey on New West Records, we get a fresh new vista into the mind of the prolific singer-songwriter, the masterful lyricist and the multi-instrumentalist. His most ambitious affair to date, Mosey will undoubtedly catch many by surprise. New sonic territories are mapped, genres are splintered, conventional rules discarded. Imagine Rolling Thunder Revue era Bob Dylan conspiring with Lee Hazlewood, Tom Waits and Peter Green. You'll hear heavy swells of fuzzed out electric guitar, horns, and keys delivered with a fire and fury that demands your close attention. There are even some surprise guest cameos to boot.1. Valerie Leon
2. I Had To Hide Your Poem In A Song
3. Toulouse (feat. Rachel McAdams)
4. Hunger Is a Dream You Die In
5. Mr. E. Me
6. One Hundred Regrets Avenue
7. I'm Alone Now
8. Sorrow (For Leonard And William)
9. (Gone Is) All But A Quarry Of Stone
10. Maybe Remember Me
11. The Collector
12. Dead Medium$24.99180 Gram Audiophile Virgin Vinyl LP 45 RPM Mono - 2 LPs Sealed Buy Now
Hurry Up, We're Dreaming (Colored Vinyl) (Awaiting Repress)Pressed On Clear Pink & Clear Blue Vinyl
With these soft spoken words on the simply-titled opening track-"Intro"- M83 mastermind Anthony Gonzalez introduces us to his sixth record and first double disc album, Hurry Up, We're Dreaming.
Dauntlessly singing into the void that was left behind since Saturdays=Youth, Gonzalez suddenly surges with overwhelming emotion as the music mounts an invisible precipice. Historically, he softly eased you into his world, introducing you to the lush and radiant spaces between captivating melodies and intimate lyrics, but not this time. Not on this record.
Graduating from the fuzzy, fumbling emotional cobwebs and draped ambiance of past records, Hurry Up, We're Dreaming careens past its audience. Brazenly stretching out along the horizon, spilling glittery, golden arms of sound across the landscape, it holds your breath hostage without you even noticing you were missing it. If it seemed that Anthony was basking in the sunshine-drenched days of his youth when he released Saturdays in 2008, then it can be said that in 2011, at the age of 30, he is tempestuously charging towards his future with Hurry Up, We're Dreaming.
Relocating to Los Angeles from Antibes, Gonzalez surrounded himself with players pivotal to completing his childhood dream of a double disc record. Producer Justin Meldal-Johnsen (Beck, NIN, The Mars Volta, Goldfrapp) and guitarist Brad Laner (from 90s band Medicine) had been hugely influential on Anthony growing up and now were central to the new record's creation.
"In France there is this show on TV where at the end there is a musical guest who plays one or two songs. I remember one night when I was a teenager being at home watching the best of performances and looking at this crazy bass player with a big afro and thinking, 'Wow this guy is so cool.' "And now I am working with him. It's so intense that thinking about it makes me feel weird. But it's weird in a super good way. Same thing with Brad, I was listening to his music when I was first getting into music and now he's on my album."
Anthony and Justin met backstage in 2009 at Scotland's T In The Park. Later, "he came to me very genuinely stating that 'he was a fan and that he would love to work with me,'" explains Gonzalez. "I love when people do that because I can tell it's coming from the heart. He was sincere and that's the way I like to work with people."
Stepping away from his work with producers Ken Thomas and Ewan Pearson on Saturday, Gonzalez freckles his new chapter with signature M83 fingerprints while pushing himself beyond the constricting emotions of a guarded musician. Bored with being frustrated and shy, Anthony is respectful of the precious time given to him and doesn't want to leave behind any regrets, thus thrusting himself into the spotlight vocally. He tests out different ways of singing, ranging from a spectral breathy whisper to a howling scream, and each voice clings to us like a dew-heavy spider web at dawn.
Fans will recognize band member Morgan Kibby, her vocals flirting with the shadowy places in between verses, leaping off the record in spoken word or blending with an adult choir. Morgan will join Anthony on tour but she was never meant to sing as much on this record as she had on pervious projects. Quenching his desire to work with a different person on each record, Gonzalez added LA-based chanteuse Zola Jesus to the mix for the completion of "Intro." "The song was already written but I really wanted a female vocal on it and I was kind of struggling to find the right person, but then I heard her music and it just made sense."
Where Saturday=Youth is drenched in lustful exploration and hungry adolescent wonder, Hurry Up is decadently cunning and seductive. "Intro" and "My tears are becoming a sea" eerily croon to you, swirling all of the glitter and growth from the past records into an epic swell, mysteriously and dramatically warning you of the impact you are about to experience. "Midnight City" (disc one) and "OK Pal" (disc two) are humid, adrenaline driven dreams unlike anything we have heard from M83 in the past. "Midnight City" adeptly sweeps you through abandoned concrete streets swimming in broken neon light and aggressively pushing and pulsating to synthetic beats. While "OK Pal" catcalls you to a locker full of mapped out Peter Gabriel-esque echoing lyrics, leaving you stranded in a post-apocalyptic landscape. These journeys are about awakening, craving and conquering. Throughout Hurry Up, We're Dreaming Anthony carries the listener to different countries of sound in his own universe, "We didn't need a story, we didn't need a real world. We just had to keep walking and we became the stories- we became the places." Drifting away from his previous records and reigned in politeness he unleashes all that he has been dreaming of and yearning for. Even when he takes a second to look back on "Echoes of Mine" the velvety, elderly voice of a woman heartbreakingly tells the story of a girl drenched in the shadows of her youth, knowing she has to grow up.
Grandiose in scale and inspired by Smashing Pumpkin's revered double disc Melancholy & The Infinite Sadness, Anthony has long had the goal to create his own monumental double disc record. "I saw when I was a teenager that I could dig into it [the album]. It was like a treasure. If I were a teenager nowadays I would try to find something as creative as this album. They had so much to say in their songs."
Impressed with the juxtaposing sun and moon artwork featured on Melancholy, Anthony focuses in on another natural duality: siblings. The cover artwork mirrors this relationship, featuring a photograph of a little boy with a little girl sitting on a bed. The photograph perpetuates the conversation for the two distinct voices we behind each disc, representing two sides of an overall piece that are almost the same. "I want people to listen to it as two different human beings that are connected somehow, but every song on the album has a secret on the other side."
Soaring and scraping up against the sky while sharing each uncharted frontier with new collaborators is what M83 does best. Gracefully coming into the next decade of his life, Anthony delivers what makes each record sincere, innocent, and full of joy: he gives us his past and his future.
"I think it is a reflection of my 30 years of being a human being. It's a compilation of all my previous music together. It's a retrospective of myself."LP 1
2. Midnight City
4. Where The Boats Go
6. Raconte moi une histoire
7. A Train To Pluton
8. Claudia Lewis
9. This Bright Flash
10. When Will You Come Home?
11. Soon, My Friend
1. My Tears Are Becoming A Sea
2. New Map
3. OK Pal
4. Another Wave From You
6. Year One, One UFO
8. Steve McQueen
9. Echoes Of Mine
10. Klaus I love You
11. Outro$28.99Colored Vinyl LP - 2 LPs Sealed AWAITING REPRESS Buy Now