It's//NEWMUSICFRIDAY+RSDDROPONE together in one maniacally written burst of energy
with links that you really want to click before we see you SAT JUNE 12 at 9AM.
In this wild, wooly week - first, let’s ring in a few NEW!
QLOWSKI - Quale Futuro? [LP/CD](Maple Death UK)
This UK quartet puts a promising Pop spin on Post-Punk that melds the best parts of early MTV-era Rock with today's ongoing rush toward the abstract and angular. Like Dry Cleaning with a chorus of female voices ("A Woman,") Qlowski regularly join soothing keyboard chords with nervy guitar shards. They are not afraid of electronics (or even the bracing sounds of Throbbing Gristle - check out how distant and dissonant the opener "Ikea Youth Pt.2" becomes,) but their wheelhouse is Pop (the almost Human League-ish rush of "To Be True.) Quite a Futuro here.
SCIENTISTS - Negativity [LP/CD](In The Red)
One of Australia's key Punk bands has been The Scientists. "Last Night" is a playlist staple. 1986's "Weird Love" put them in the hands of a new generation of Indie rockers-ten years into their career. Now 45 years after cranking it up for the first time, Scientists have returned with an album that is as close to Punk as they were in 1976. The garage-y overtones are a surprise, but the trademark swampiness has only gotten more grinding and Ty Segall-ish on "Negativity." Their songs remain structured like Sixties singles, but cuts like "Outsider" are designed to bruise you with clever, caustic lyrics and distortion coming from every angle. While this classic incarnation of the band has not recorded since 1987, "Negativity" never feels like a throwback. Scientists remain just as bludgeoning with their riffs and howl like they have been locked in a cage for decades. In other words, welcome back.
IXTAHUELE - Dharmaland [LP](Subliminal Sounds SWE)
"Dharmaland" is an examination of the lost exotica of Eden Ahbez. Like Martin Denny or the other purveyors of that long-lost dreamlike music, Ahbez's music is largely about traveling without moving. Ixtahuele is a Swedish quartet that goes to painstaking lengths to relive the atmosphere around Ahbez's music. Written in 1961-1963, this music was never recorded. So when they invite Mort Weiss who played with Ahbez on "Wild Boy" in 1959 to come to play with them, "Dharmaland" takes on a whole new life. Music, in large part, is about keeping us alive. "Dharmaland" is that unique album about keeping music alive. The Jazzy overtones are prevalent throughout, but it never succumbs to becoming a production that showcases the players. Ixtahuele makes the sacrifice and often sounds like one instrument - the band. On "Manna" with Kadjha Bonet, instruments drift in and out. The vibraphone slips in, but only to let you know it is there - before you faintly hear it for the rest of the song. In fact, the voices who contribute are instruments too. "Dharmaland" is everything you dream about in an adventurous record - especially if you dream of a faraway place where the sand and surf battle for land daily and the wind whispers in your ears.
And then boldly attempt to give you all the RSD DROP ONE you can handle (there are more in the weekly e-mail)
ALBERT COLLINS AND THE BARRELHOUSE - Live [LP](Munich)
The Seventies were hard times for bluesmen all over the world. After two revivals in the Sixties, the only Blues really playing on the radio from "boogie" based Rock bands. When Disco swept the nation, Blues (like Jazz) found its own roots. Texas' guitar slinger Albert Collins had enough of a trick bag to slip into more adventurous AOR stations but headed for Europe where he was treated like royalty. This 1978 live performance with Dutch band Barrelhouse shows Collins' command of his instrument and how he raises the stakes when he raises the stakes - any backing band must rise to the occasion. Whether running through the favorites ("Frosty") or burning through a new cut ("Conversation With Collins,") Collins plays with astonishing prowess. At times, it is as if he was challenging the audience to say "Singer? What singer? That man sings through his guitar!"
BRAINIAC - Attic Tapes/Brainiac From Dayton OH [2LP](Touch and Go)
Brainiac was doing the impossible for three albums - scaling the heights of Indie Rock without much press hoopla or critical uproar. Each album was becoming more parsed together from disparate resources and weirder sounds. Listening to the "Attic Tapes" is your chance to hear them develop as a band. In the groggy confines of a house, Brainiac pounded out riffs and inserted sounds with skill. Like most demos, you are listening for songs to take shape. So choruses leap out and with the squall being gone, Brainiac sounds like Jeff Buckley playing with Nirvana in places. "From Dayton, OH" puts their all-too-brief career into perspective, placing the disorder in order. Tim Taylor is at his best when being torn asunder from the band. He lays in wait for his next shriek or scream. He howls his words out in melody. He reacts to the band's amphetamine punk thrust with a barrage of words and sounds. Brainiac, the band is blistering. Taylor is sorely missed.
CHEMICAL BROTHERS - The Darkness That You Fear [12"](Imperial/Republic)
Have to say, the advent of the classic Chemical Brothers slipping in a blazing dance track to Record Store Day is a welcome surprise. After Dance music lost a lot of steam over the past year AND we lost Daft Punk, the wizened siblings rage back with a beauty constructed from hypnotic horn breaks, smooth builds that carry you higher without you noticing, and a jumpy beat that sounds fantastic. "The Darkness That You Fear" is House music blended with modern EDM to the point where you cannot tell the difference. Not that you want to do anything to it - but dance.
THE CURE - Faith [PIC DISC LP](Fiction/Elektra/Rhino)
A word about mid-period Cure. The three "gloomy" albums that follow their sparkling/shocking introduction (1979's "Boys Don't Cry" or "Three Imaginary Boys,") remain The Cure at their most mysterious. In hindsight, "Seventeen Seconds," and "Faith" (as well as its bonus album "Carnage Visors") seem to be about doing a lot with very little being played. While The Cure is by no means minimalist, their tendency here to literally pour effects all over their music and vocals makes the songs into shadowy beasts that rise quickly and then descend back into your imagination once the next song comes on. If anything, the legacy of "Faith" is the mood that Cure will be able to conjure for the slower more downtrodden cuts on their way ("Sinking" that ends "The Head on The Door," "If Only Tonight We Could Sleep" from "Kiss Me Kiss Me Kiss Me," and finally how they master wielding ice and light on "Disintegration.") "The Holy Hour" with its phased bass, the propulsive chill (and weird sounds behind) "Other Voices" and painting with dark and light on the grim playground twist "Funeral Party" are all mesmerizing. "All Cats Are Grey" and "Primary" are staples of any Cure diet. In the end, it is far too easy to divide up The Cure's albums into what you want. "Faith" makes a bold step toward where "Pornography" will crush us all with despair AND where "The Head on The Door" will lift us (temporarily) out of our pallid mood.
DJ MARKY - Brazil 45 Boxset Vol.2 [7" BOX](Mr. Bongo UK)
Record Store Day's big prizes tend to be box sets. Elegantly printed and produced, these heirlooms are more than just heroic displays. Mr.Bongo makes bold and brilliant singles year-round. A split 7" is generally two tracks that belong in your arsenal to throw the next party into high gear. Last year's box by DJ Format was spectacular. But, DJ Marky may have actually bested it. It could easily be ruled a "win" just because it starts with Marcos Valle. However, that wise move was probably just to give us something familiar before putting the real treasures out there for all to hear. The best way to judge Brazilian music is on the quality of the break. With South America being the intersection of so many cultures and therefore rhythms, that central beat of a track is everything. So here are (no lie!) 10 exemplary songs that build to a fantastic peak.
Robson Jorge and Lincoln Olivetti follow with a more Eighties funk-based groove with some tight keyboard patterns. Joyce speeds it way up and lets it just joyfully race out of control on “Aldeia De Ogum” just in time for Som Tres to “refine” the speed with a very cocktail-ready “Emilia” - featuring some blistering horn charts. These only make way for the thunder of low horns, seductive string swells, and more on Trio Mocoto’s slow burner “Nao Adianta” - probably the peak moment out of the tracks selected by DJ Marky. Marky, being a Drum and Bass DJ, clearly knows his beats. He truly puts his heart into every selection on this stunner.
ELECTRIC WIZARD - Time To Die [2LP](Spinefarm)
Metal generally finds a great niche for releases on RSD. Electric Wizard is no stranger to the limited release, but make the most on this blinding hot double (vinyl) whammy. In the middle of yet another lineup change, Electric Wizard returns to its Godzilla-esque Doom riff-wreckage. The ten plus minutes of the sample-laden opener “Incense For The Damned” is one of the moments of late-period Wizardry. “Time To Die” is dark and druggy casting a Psychedelic pall over the whole album, while “I Am Nothing” is an epic dive into Sludge. Electric Wizard wails, squeals, and shakes the foundations on this underrated album.
FASHION - Product Perfect [LP](Sundazed/Redeye)
Birmingham UK. Musicians absorbed in the separation of culture based on consumerism and different beliefs inject politics into music - other than Punk. Perhaps it was that scruffy music tearing away at the fabric that led to stripped-down Post-Punk like this. “Die In The West” is tense full of insistent drums. The voice of Luke James is low and unique. Like a sharp croon (or affected by effects on “Citinite,”) Fashion’s lyrics are honed to a sardonic edge (the Magazine-esque “Don’t Touch Me” is a highlight.) With their pre-New Romantic wavy guitars and inventive Ultravox-ian songs, Fashion is back in fashion again.
FOCUS - Singles, Deep Cuts, and BBC Live [2LP](Music on Vinyl)
The Dutch Prog Rock group Focus managed to pound out two major hits (the swinging funk of "Sylvia" and "Hocus Pocus" an American Top 10 in 1973) as well as a pair of Gold albums. Around those accomplishments, they made several wild appearances on BBC shows (The Old Grey Whistle Test and In Concert.) The second LP of live music is actually the band captured at their peak with multiple cuts from "Focus III." However, longtime fans will probably be more thrilled at the first vinyl appearance in decades of lost tracks that were originally found on the odds & sods 1977 release "Sea of Memories."
FRANKIE AND THE WITCH FINGERS - Brain Telephone [LP](Greenway/The Orchard)
Now that Psychedelic Garage is its own defined subgenre (note: it was always Psychedelic - it erupted in the Sixties,) once Bloomington/now Los Angeles rockers Frankie and The Witch Fingers continue to find ways to make their back-catalog sound like the music of the present. 2017’s “Brain Telephone” carries that very Sixties deep reverb and organ to its thrilling zenith on “Learnings of the Light,” while crushing the acidic blues wobble of “Primitive Delight.” Surprisingly, “Brain Telephone” is not as heavy as the previous “Heavy Roller” nor as defined as their move to Greenway on “Zam.” “Brain Telephone” exists as peak early Witch Fingers hinting at the fury of their live shows and what is coming.
GROUNDHOGS - Who Will Save The World?! [LP](Fire Recordings/Redeye)
The UK Blues/Rock band The Groundhogs continue to be omitted from the annals of (British) Rock History. Founder Tony McPhee was one of the original group of performers who backed Blues legends who came to play/visit England in the early Sixties. The Groundhogs not only stayed together but earned the respect of John Lee Hooker. When the British Blues Boom winnowed away, The Groundhogs collected their resources and expanded their vision. 1970’s “Thank Christ For The Bomb” took their Blues/Rock to Prog-ian extremes. Its follow-up 1971’s “Split” followed a more freeform approach to translating their rugged blues into breakneck tempo biker rock (like Pink Fairies.) When they notched a chart single with the immortal wailer “Cherry Red,” they dove into another concept album in 1972.
If “Bomb” was Groundhogs building up and “Split” was Groundhogs building up speed, “Who Will Save The World?!” is their ultimate musical statement of what they should sound like. More subtle than “Split,” “World” swings a bit more (“Body In Mind” rolls through a myriad of changes in both time and sound) and even blister with Blues more than before (“The Grey Maze.”) “Music Is The Food Of Thought” and “Earth Is Not Room Enough” are thought-provoking lyrically and arranged to demonstrate just how multi-layered this trio really was. However, drummer Ken Pustelnik would leave shortly after the release and by 1974 it was all over (for the first incarnation. ) Still with three classic albums, “World?!” carries an eerie finality - but their world-weary Rock feels timeless and plays on just like Tony McPhee and his band.
GOLDEN EARRING - “Twilight Zone”/”When The Lady Smiles” [7”](Music On Vinyl)
The American day in the sun for Dutch Rock legends Golden Earring was a great one. As if they needed to prove “Radar Love” was no fluke and they were far from “one-hit wonders,” 1982’s “Twilight Zone” remains a song almost as dark and desperate as its cinematic video. “When The Lady Smiles” was far more conventional, but weirdly damned from success by a more controversial video. Here’s to Golden Earring getting a singles collection for an upcoming RSD, they have a wealth of great songs to choose from.
LEE PERRY - Roast Fish, Collie Weed, Corn Bread [LP](VP UK)
Scratch’s vocal album from 1978 was a groundbreaker. Playing his studio (Black Ark) as an instrument, Perry turned Dub into an art form, a “version” that became its own song. So, listening to Perry sing along with his generous mixes of thumping beats and weirdness (babies cries, cows moo) just works. “Roast Fish” has a “kitchen-sink” approach to recording, but remains so minimal in places. “Soul Fire” pumps oxygen into the fire beneath “Roast Fish” and the whole thing just cooks.
PSYCHEGROUND GROUP [RED LP](Outside/Light In The Attic EUR)
This 1971 recording of what could qualify as psychedelic "library" music brings you a series of instrumentals that are actually more composed than "jammed" to reality. As the Italian group Nuova Idea runs through the spectrum, they latch on to a good groove and subtlety add to it. At its heart, it remains very English circa 1966 (think UFO and the other Swinging London hotspots) but it progresses into where the Italians (like PFM) will be taking Prog Rock soon.
We are closing in on the bullseye that is Record Store Day-Drop One! With that, we will write as much as we can about those new releases that you simply cannot miss. However, this is no slowdown - it is a ramp-up! Thank you. Share. Comment. Enjoy.
On a final note, T-BONES would like you to know that Record Store Day is coming in two drops - June 12th and July 17th. This list of exclusives, reissues, and just awesome products will be invading our time shared here for the next few weeks. However, it is just another guest at the party. There’s no slowing us down. Tell your friends about us.
Enjoy. Share. And check out the entire RSD list and even WISHLIST us if you like. RSD 21 with T-BONES
A mix of the NEW RELEASES and what to expect on Saturday for RSD DROP ONE!
T-BONES Records and Cafe is a full-service fast-casual restaurant and record store in Hattiesburg, MS. We are a member of the Coalition of Independent Music Stores and are the longest-running record store in the state of Mississippi. If you have questions - we have answers … and probably a lot more information just waiting for you at:
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