STAFF PICKS

kimber – the residents reissue
lindsay – donkeys, james supercave
dario – steve reich reissue, radiation city
jeff – steve reich reissue

THIS WEEK’S NEW RELEASES
Basia Bulat – Good Advice CD/LP (Secret City)
Good Advice is the fizzing, phosphorescing new pop LP by songwriter Basia Bulat. Captured and produced by My Morning Jacket leader Jim James in Louisville, KY, it follows on 2013’s Polaris- and Juno-nominated Tall Tall Shadow and two years of tour-dates alongside acts like Sufjan Stevens, Daniel Lanois and Destroyer. Good Advice mixes classic, sterling songwriting with radiant, contemporary sounds – trembling organ, loose drums, lightning-rod electric guitar.These are 10 songs of desire and redemption, lit up with a bottle-rocket of liberated, faintly psychedelic sound. “Basia has something truly unique,” James says, “and her music was a truly extraordinary thing to witness.” Despite a shared love for classic gospel, soul and country, Bulat and James resolved not to make a throwback record.

 

The DonkeysMidnight Palms CD/LP (Easy Sound)
The Donkeys are a Californian band through and through. A four-piece from San Diego, they’ve spent the past few years developing a close relationship to distinctly homegrown source materials, bridging the gap between the Byrds, Flying Burrito Brothers, Buffalo Springfield, and the Grateful Dead.

 

Flowers – Everybody’s Dying To Meet You CD/LP+MP3 (Kanine)
Over the course of ten intensely thrilling pop songs, singer Rachel Kenedy’s ethereal vocals and Sam Ayres’ textured guitar is backed by the powerful, metronomic beat of drummer Jordan Hockley. Produced by Brian O’Shaughnessey (The Clientele, Primal Scream, My Bloody Valentine), the sessions capture the essence of both their dynamic live sound and their distortion-laden home demos. Their musical inspiration from shoegaze, C86 and New Zealand’s Flying Nun label is now evident.

 

The Frights – You Are Going To Hate This CD/LP (Dangerbird)
“The Frights, a San Diego surf-punk band tore up the stage with their enormous energy. Some of their number one fans were crowd diving at every opportunity they had, while singing along to their songs. These guys absolutely rip….” –Grimy Goods. “Swoon-worthy psych guitar riffs rendezvoused with reverb during our hellos. The song then turned 180 degrees and exploded into a raunchy rockabilly tune. Full of raw grit power, Mikey Carnevale’s vocals charged into the backbeat-driven snare before flowing back into those luscious psychedelic riffs.” –Lo Pie. “They drift between drawn-out jangle-pop and sped-up grime-punk riffs, and frontman Mikey Carnevale twists his echoey yells as if Roy Orbison became a surf rat and used an empty metal trashcan as a microphone.” –The Portland Mercury

 

James Supercave – Better Strange CD/LP (Fairfax Recordings)
In 2015 Fairfax Recordings band James Supercave made waves combining Sophie Koko Gate’s award winning animation video Half Wet with their single, “Better Strange.” The video, which premiered via Nerdist, is basically “like if ‘90s cartoons did the same drugs that our music is hooked on. Beautiful, bizarre, hilarious” states the band. Nerdist states that based on this first glimpse that there “appears to be an excellent album on the way with Better Strange…” The title track cuts the familiar slam and glam of psych-pop with the odd details that continually throw James Supercave into the uncanny valley of the pop genre: the lurching groove of the bass, the relentless loop of the synth, the shape-shifting timbre of the vocal. “You’re so much better strange. You’re so much better when you make mistakes with me,” urges Supercave in a fit against normalcy. “Better Strange” dares the listener to commit to the mistakes they’ve always wanted to make.

 

Lissie – My Wild West CD/LP (Lionboy)
My Wild West is Lissie’s third studio album and is a fitting tribute to her life in California, from her arrival as a fresh-faced singer/songwriter to the present, leaving for the Midwest wiser and more self-assured. Bookended by the songs “Hollywood” and “Ojai,” it brings out the two extremes of the past decade the dashed hopes and heartbreak of the former and the stability, joy and peace of the latter. My Wild West represents both a new beginning and a return to Lissie’s Midwestern roots. “Opening with the electric energy of ‘My Wild West Overture’ provides a significant contrast to the gentle piano chords of the slower, steady ‘Hollywood’. This album remains firmly in the same vein as Lissie’s previous work: strong building guitar with a soft western edge. It captures the nomadic, free-spirited style reflected in the album artwork: darkness surrounds her as she walks, one arm shaking her messy blonde hair.” – Qmunicate

 

Radiation City – Synesthetica CD/LP+MP3 (Polyvinyl)
New album from the Portland, Oregon dream pop quintet, produced by John Vanderslice. “Portland, Oregon, act Radiation City convey this synthy style of dream-pop that takes over your senses. Reminiscent of Portishead and Roxy Music, the band takes bits and pieces of trip-hop and art rock and blends it into an art form that’s truly their own.” — MoTiV

 

Steve Reich – Four Organs/Phase Patterns [Reissue/1970] CD/LP (Superior Viaduct)
Steve Reich remains one of the most important figures in 20th century music. As part of the so-called “Big Four” of New York minimalists (along with La Monte Young, Terry Riley and Philip Glass), Reich influenced both the classical world and contemporary pop music. Originally released on Shandar in 1971, Four Organs / Phase Patterns is one of the most highly regarded avant-garde recordings of the past 50 years.

 

The Residents – The Gingerbread Man [Reissue/1994] CD (Cryptic Corporation)
The Gingerbread Man is the story or, maybe more accurately, one of the many journeys of an entity that visits the minds of human beings, and spies upon their thoughts. In the center of these personalities, The Gingerbread Man finds each person’s individual ‘brain song,’ an infectious piece of pop music that floats around in their mind. The Gingerbread Man recognizes this ‘brain song’ as a human’s unconscious attempt at creating order in the quagmire of chaos constantly confusing its mental condition. Because of his ultimately detached position, The Gingerbread Man has no real emotional stake in the lives of these people, but they do represent an ongoing sense of amusement for him. In the end he sums up his feelings toward humanity with a brief song of his own. Bonus tracks: instrumental arrangement, edited condensation.”

 

Snarky Puppy – Family Dinner Volume Two CD+DVD (Ground Up)
This album is the second in the Family Dinner series; which began with 2014’s Grammy Award-winning album, Family Dinner Volume OneFamily Dinner Volume Two includes both the audio album and a companion DVD that features footage of the recording process, artist interviews and behind-the-scenes b-roll. Recorded in New Orleans, a portion of the proceeds from the sales of of the album will be donated to the charity organization Roots Of Music. As their website states, “Roots Of Music empowers the youth of New Orleans through music education, academic support, and mentorship while preserving and promoting the unique musical and cultural heritage of our city.”

 

Eliot Sumner – Information CD (Cherrytree)
“If the name doesn’t exactly sound familiar, there’s no mistaking that furrowed brow — Eliot Sumner is the youngest daughter of Sting (née Gordon Sumner) and his second wife, Trudie Styler. On her solo debut, Information, the 25-year-old singer/songwriter is quick to establish her own identity while staying true to her family’s unrestrained creative spirit. She assertively lays her husky, androgynous voice over the insistent synthesizer rhythms of songs like ‘Firewood,’ ‘After Dark’ and the soaring ‘I Followed You Home,’ all of which have an elegant, instant appeal. There are shades of her father’s work too, especially on the tracks ‘Species’ and ‘Dead Arms And Dead Legs,’ which sounds like an outtake from Regatta de Blanc. And why not? When everyone else with Fender Precision bass is trying so hard to capture that magic, it helps to have a direct line.” – SF Gate

 

Amy Winehouse – Frank [Reissue/2003] LP (Republic)
Second repress (within a year) of Amy Winehouse’s debut album, Frank, which was nominated for the Mercury Music Prize upon it’s original release. She also won an Ivor Novello award in 2004 for album opener (and her debut single) “Stronger Than Me.” If you missed out on last August’s reissue, now is your chance to pick up this classic on vinyl.

 

NEXT WEEK’S NEW RELEASES
ANIMAL COLLECTIVE – Painting With CD/LP get a free AC tote bag or slipmat with purchase while supplies last!!!
WILD NOTHING – Life Of Pause CD/LP
LAKE STREET DIVE – Side Pony CD/LP
WOLFMOTHER – Victorious CD/LP
BIRDS OF CHICAGO – Real Midnight CD
SETH BOGART (HUNX AND HIS PUNX)- Self-Titled CD
CAVE SINGERS – Banshee CD
POP GROUP – For How Much Longer Do We Tolerate Mass Murder CD/LP
RA RA RIOT – Need Your Light CD/LP
RANGDA – Heretics Bargain CD/LP
CARRIE RODRIGUEZ – Lola CD
VARIOUS – Soul Jazz Records Presents New York Noise CD/LP
TEEN – Love Yes CD/LP
MAVIS STAPLES – Living On A High Note CD
CAVERN OF ANTI MATTER (Stereolab) – Void Beats/Invocation Trex CD/LP
MATMOS – Ultimate Care 2 CD/LP
VENETIAN SNARES – Traditional Synthesizer Music CD/LP
FOO FIGHTERS – Saint Cecilia LP
TIFT MERRIT – Bramble Rose LP reissue
SHIVAS – Better Off Dead LP
THUNDERCAT – Beyond/Where The Giants Roam 12″

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