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Elastica

BBC Sessions

    THIS IS A RECORD STORE DAY 2019 EXCLUSIVE, LIMITED TO ONE PER PERSON.

    The BBC sessions have never been available on vinyl before. Strange Fruit released the Radio One sessions on CD back in 2001 but this is the first artist curated release. Combining tracks recorded for John Peel, Steve Lamacq & Mark Radcliff, it’s a must for every Elastica fan. Record Store Day exclusive.

    First Time On Vinyl - White Vinyl plus poster.

    Edy Star

    Sweet Edy

      THIS IS A RECORD STORE DAY 2019 EXCLUSIVE, LIMITED TO ONE PER PERSON.

      Edys Star's debut LP, "Sweet Edy" (1974), is one of the key cult albums from 1970s Brazil, never reissued on vinyl until now. Featuring glam rock, funk, samba jazz and songs written by the best composers of the time, anyone looking for a Brazilian take on Marc Bolan, David Bowie, Roxy Music... will love this stunning record. Presented in facsimile artwork and pressed on 180g vinyl.

      What is "Sool"? How is "Sool"? "Sool" is everything, everyone and no-one – "Sool" is a phantasm, a creation, which reflects the album's atmosphere, and also Ellen Allien as a person. Opening with the slowling building atmopheric street / cafe recording of "Einsteigen", the scene is set for a series of minimal electronic tracks, either techno, or more intricate electronica. Featuring precise programming and the subtlest layers of keyboard and synth work, "Sool" is a sparse but beautiful outing for Berlin's BPitch Controller.

      Paul Woolford’s hardcore and rave-indebted Special Request project continues its industrious hot streak, delivering two sublime, peak-time reworks of Erol Alkan’s unstoppable "Spectrum". Since its release in late 2017, Alkan’s hit has been as ubiquitous as Woolford himself, gaining momentum as a staple in the sets of DJs such as Andrew Weatherall, Sven Vath and Mano Le Tough.

      Beginning with the "Kaleidoscopic Mix", SR strips back the high-energy reverie of Alkan’s original into something truly vast, building to an unmistakable and flawless acid bassline, from which emerges a brooding and dystopian network of melodies. Balancing tension and melancholy without ever losing grip of its enormous bass weight, the "Kaleidoscopic Mix" delivers ten-minutes of compelling euphoria with more than subtle nods to the heady times of trance and prog. Infact, you can almost envisage the great Sven Vath turning this track into one of 'Those' moments at his continuing DC-10 residency in Ibiza....

      On the flip, the "Double Vision" mix takes much of the same structure but places the original, glorious riff front-and-centre once more, as if stretching its fizzy, inherent energy out of a warehouse and towards the fields at sunrise. A momentus breakdown culminates in some rather disorientating flurries as the track spins out of control for a moment of unrivelled techno greatness.

      Supreme stuff from one of the masters of innovations. Gonna be huge!


      Erin Anne

      Tough Love

        The debut album from Erin Anne, Tough Love is an unruly yet elegant collage of all the elements that make up her musical vocabulary: wildly shredded riffs and lo-fi acoustic ramblings, punk-rock energy and folky austerity, new-wave whimsy and high-flown pop theatrics. With a narrative voice at turns thoughtful and rebellious, confrontational and shy, the L.A.-based singer/songwriter presents a body of work that bravely documents the slow and strange process of becoming yourself.

        Co-produced with Alex Rogers (Family Hahas, Tambourines), Tough Love offers a potent introduction to Erin’s kaleidoscopic musicality and infinitely unpredictable guitar work. In bringing the album to life, the two collaborators drew from an earlier version of Tough Love self-released by Erin in early 2019, re-recording each song with live drums and Rogers’s lavish collection of analog synths. With Erin playing every instrument except drums, Tough Love bears an expansive sonic palette wholly suited to its emotional thrust—a state of mind she encapsulates as “standing in the doorway between presents you’ve grown out of and futures you’re afraid you’re too small for, and using music as the catalyst to take those steps into the unknown.”

        An album charged with restless intensity, Tough Love reaches a glorious peak on its title track, a song initially informed by Erin’s experience in earning her Ph.D. in musicology at UCLA. “Being a woman in academia can be exhausting,” says Erin. “‘Tough Love’ started when I came from a day at seminar when I was trying to make a very simple point and couldn’t get a word out—I was incredibly frustrated, and tried to write a vaguely ’80s, “9 to 5”-style song that would feel good to Jazzercise to.” But as the track took shape, “Tough Love” eventually morphed into a massive anthem, a thrillingly cathartic refusal to let her voice go unheard.

        On the track “Bedroom Track (Carrie),” Erin transforms sentences lifted from Carrie Brownstein’s 2015 memoir Hunger Makes Me A Modern Girl to deliver a “personal manifesto about wanting things—a very specifically female/queer kind of wanting.” The album’s hypnotic centerpiece, “Gaslighter,” which explores the confusion of abuse, is simultaneously jarring, mesmerizing, and oddly transcendent.



        FORMAT INFORMATION

        Coloured LP Info: Coke bottle green vinyl.

        Coloured LP includes MP3 Download Code.

        Eric Bachmann

        No Recover

          There was something sinister about Crooked Fingers, both the name of the project and the music that Eric Bachmann wrote at the helm of its ever-shifting lineups over 15 years. He retired the moniker a couple of years ago, but with his third album under his own name, the transformation feels gorgeous and final and irreversible: No Recover. The drunken louts and red devil dawns are a thing of the past now, monuments to a different time. Bachmann, husband and recent father, has some new lenses through which to view the world. But while No Recover is decidedly mellow and reflective, do not mistake it for the work of a relaxed, satisfied songwriter, sitting on some Georgia porch with a stalk of wheat between his lips, gently rocking a cradle with his foot and whistling an old tune.

          No, the Eric Bachmann of 2018 seems to view life with a sort of disgruntled maturity and righteous resignation. No Recover is both harrowing and beautiful, and its mellowness can be deceiving. The album is mostly just him, a classical guitar, some treated rhythm tracks, and otherworldly drop-ins from singer Avery Leigh Draut and guitarist Eric Johnson, Bachmann's old pal from their Archers of Loaf days. He's got a lot on his mind, only some of it pretty. The sunset on the album’s cover might be the end of a cruel world for the duo in “Jaded Lover, Shady Drifter,” who introduce No Recover; they feel like flip-side lovers, both sonically and lyrically, of the couple at the center of Bring On the Snakes’ “The Rotting Strip.” But that dark sentiment is quickly reversed with “Daylight,” one of Bachmann’s most stunning vocal performances ever: For a guy who earned his stripes by shredding his vocal cords in the ’90s, he sure can croon.

          And though the words cast some shadows—“fight for your life,” he implores—ultimately there is hope. “If you try, you can be loved.” Same goes, to a less direct degree, for “Waylaid,” the record’s jauntiest song, and a meditation on failure and love that leaves room for Johnson’s bright-but-mournful electric guitar to take center stage. But leave it to Bachmann to save the best for last: No Recover ends with one song for his wife and another for his son.

          Awesome 1997 debut album from Philadelphia's neo soul queen Erykah Badu. After several years of mainstream pop R&B the main output from the soul scene, her more organic boho soul-jazz vibes and Billie Holidayesque vocals came as a breath of fresh air. Includes such classic tracks such as "On & On", "Certainly (Flipped It)" and "Next Lifetime". Essential!

          FORMAT INFORMATION

          2xLtd LP Info: 180g vinyl.

          Erykah Badu

          Mama's Gun

          'Mama's Gun' is the second studio album by neo soul singer Erykah Badu, released in 2000. Recorded at Electric Lady Studios in New York City, the album incorporates funk, soul and jazz styles. Covering themes of insecurity, social issues and personal relationships, Badu delivered a highly intimate and personal album that reached Platinum two months after its release. 'Mama's Gun' features substantial contributions from several members of the Soulquarians outfit, of which Badu was a member. It also features guests such as soul singer Betty Wright and trumpeter Roy Hargrove.

          The album contains the single "Bag Lady" which, with its colorful, artsy music video, shot to #1 on the R&B charts, and also into the Top 10 on the billboard charts. "Bag Lady" was nominated for the Grammy Award for Best Female R&B Vocal Performance and for Best R&B Song. Also the song "Didn't Cha Know?" was nominated for Best R&B Song.

          Rolling Stone magazine applauded her for taking "chances the way Stevie Wonder or Nina Simone did in their prime" and went on to say "she has taken her art to the next level." Entertainment Weekly called the album a "'70s soul homage featuring live musicians and a smooth-funk sound that wouldn't be out of place on a CTI record."



          FORMAT INFORMATION

          2xLP Info: • 180 gram audiophile vinyl
          • Gatefold sleeve

          Recorded live to tape at Toerag Studios, London in January 2015.

          The Toerag Sessions is a collection of solo versions of my songs, recorded live to 2-track tape at Toerag Studios in London with grammy-winning producer Liam Watson (The White Stripes - Elephant).

          Over the last few years, in between touring with my bands The Red Clay Halo and Vena Portae, I've played lots of solo shows. Often people will come up to me at the end of those shows and ask if there is any way to get hold of recordings of the songs as they've just heard them - just me, my guitar and my harmonica.

          Up until now, that hasn't been possible, but with The Red Clay Halo currently on hiatus after their final tour last year, I took the opportunity to go in to the studio to record this selection of songs from my back catalogue. Many of these songs are the ones I usually choose to play at solo shows, with a few additions. The songs go right back to my first UK band the-low-country, through all my albums with The Red Clay Halo, and including a brand new song, 'Anywhere Away', written last year as the theme to the forthcoming British movie Hec McAdam (starring Peter Mullan and Keith Allen).

          FORMAT INFORMATION

          2xCD/DVD Info: Comes in "casebound" book package with bonus DVD containing film of all the songs from The Toerag Sessions, plus exclusive behind-the-scenes footage and interviews.

          Sweet Kind of Blue is her first full studio album since 2013's critically lauded Dear River and marks a new sound for Barker as she returns to the soul and blues influences that first inspired her to become a songwriter and musician.

          Emily Barker's new album was recorded at Sam Phillips Recording Service in Memphis with Grammy winning producer Matt Ross-Spang (Jason Isbell, Margo Price) and an allstar cast of Memphis session players.

          Emily Barker is best known as the writer and performer of the award-winning theme to BBC crime drama Wallander starring Kenneth Branagh. She has released music as a solo artist as well as with various bands including The Red Clay Halo, Vena Portae and Applewood Road. In 2015 she composed her first full feature film soundtrack for Jake Gavin's Hector, which won a Scottish BAFTA for its lead actor, Peter Mullan.

          FORMAT INFORMATION

          Coloured LP Info: Indies exclusive blue vinyl.

          LP Info: 180g audiophile black vinyl.

          Ernest Berk

          Electronic Music For Two Ballets

          Extraordinary unreleased homemade electronics from the late 1960s made by a pioneering ballet dancer and musician. With possibly the best name ever.

          There are very few Ernest Berk recordings. As a pioneering ballet dancer, instructor and electronic music artist he was surprisingly prolific. He made music for all sorts of uses – he even made library music – and of course this very album of his music for two of his ballets.

          Towards the end of his life Ernest Berk gifted his entire collection of works, tapes, documents and all to the Historical Archive Of The City Of Cologne. Tragically, in 2009, a large part of the archive collapsed (due to the construction of an underground railway) destroying 90% of the everything. Berk’s tapes have tragically never been recovered. They are assumed lost forever.

          So these two recording – issued privately circa 1970 – remain precious to say the least. There were no masters, this new pressing was simply transferred from the original copy held by his family. We have done our best to restore the sound. I have also reproduced the original notes, and from what I can gather this album may well have been pressed and given away as promotion for the Dance Theatre Commune.

          Ernest Berk was born in Cologne, Germany and cams to England just before the war. He started a dance company in London and wanted a sound especially suited to his experimental dance style. This he found in electronic music.

          Berk feels that electronic music is able to express the feelings of contemporary society in a more potent and communicative way than conventional forms of music. This is not to say he disregards traditional forms of music, rather, he blends the best elements of both, creating a new and exciting sound.

          Over the years he has gained an international reputation as a composer of electronic music. His works have been heard in Berlin, Cologne, Florence, Edinburgh, United States, to name a few. He has scored a number of films, plays and ballets. Ernest and his wife, Ailsa, opened a new studio at 52 Dorset St, W1, in April, 1970 where they give tuition in modern dance, electronic music and percussion. They also teach at the Guildhall School Of Music And Drama and at ILEA Institute (Stanhope). The studio is headquarters of the Dance Theatre Commune which the Berks created in order to combine their work in dance and music with those already working in similar spheres. 


          Elk Edits is a highly coveted club release of the unearthed gem by Elkie Brookes – The Rising Cost Of Love

          The release features a tour de force 10 min diskomiks by the legendary Prins Thomas on the A Side.

          On the B there is a heavyweight club edit by Percolate residents and Persies edits head honchos Krywald & Farrer.

          The release has been doing the rounds amongst AAA djs for the last 6 months gaining support from the likes of Hunee, Ben UFO, Soul Clap, Chaos In The CBD and Prosumer amongst many others.

          Trad dub cuts here in that authentic stylee from the High Note and Gay Feet labels .A selection of rocking rhythms from The Revolutionaries masterminded by Jamaica's finest female record producer, Mrs Sonia Pottinger, and mixed by Duke Reid's nephew, Errol Brown, chief engineer at the legendary Treasure Isle studio. This is new to me, but sounding lush, dreamy and fully legit. It's definitely in tune with Tubby's original sound, full of squelchy delays, aggressive tape echoes and warbling flange plus that all important magical element - spacial ambience (summat I think the new school of dub producers need to remember when they're utilizing their endless digital multitracks and plug-ins...). Yep, really strong hear, surprised she's never crossed my radar. Get involved! 

          A haunting collection of experimental music by the celebrated electronic artist and sound designer, "Refraction" continues Caminiti’s exploratory path of deconstructed electronic sounds and structures as showcased on his last album (2017’s “Toxic City”), presenting four new pieces created on a Make Noise modular synthesizer with an emphasis on tranquil atmospheres and dub-influenced production.

          This Make Noise Records release was Mastered by Rafael Anton Irisarri at Black Knoll Studios.

          Pressed to 12" Clear (140gm) vinyl and inserted into a black inner dust sleeve and matte jacket featuring artwork by Sean Curtis Patrick.

          This release is pressed in an edition of 500.

          STAFF COMMENTS

          Matt says: Gotta love these Make Noise curated releases using the custom synthesizer. Arresting, dramatic and tension-wraught releases that sound like nothing else on the market.

          FORMAT INFORMATION

          Ltd 12" Info: Strictly limited clear vinyl press. 500 copies. Artwork by Sean Curtis Patrick

          Erasmo Carlos has no counterpart in the universe of Anglophone pop music that could begin to hint at his relevance, popularity and his complex relationship with the only Brazilian pop star more universally recognized than himself, Roberto Carlos. He may be a beloved pop star and household name in Brazil, but hardly because of the music found on the three albums reissued by Light In The Attic. While in retrospect they can be appreciated as some of his most creative, consistent and personal albums, they were also some of the least commercially successful and underappreciated of his long career, at least until recently. Embracing the artistic freedom of the global counterculture of the late sixties and early seventies, over the course of these three albums, Erasmo evolved from his bubblegum beginnings into a sophisticated seventies singer-songwriter. "Erasmo Carlos E Os Tremendões" (1970), "Carlos, ERASMO . . ." (1971) and "Sonhos E Memórias 1941-1972" (1972) collectively find this maturing teeny-bopper delivering a mix of world class psychedelic Rock, traditional Rock ‘N’ Roll, Soul, Funk, Folk, Bossa Nova, and Samba-Rock to an unsuspecting Brazilian audience.

          "Sonhos E Memórias 1941-1972" is truly singular within Brazilian pop fusing rock, soul, jazz and singer-songwriter styles. It’s simultaneously rootsy, funky, modern and nostalgic. The lyrics are highly personal, searching for deeper meaning with lots of flower power imagery and language, while the music is tight, highly rhythmic, melodic and restrained in its delivery and effortless groove. Built around the future fusion trio Azymuth with keyboardist José Roberto Bertrami, drummer Ivan Conti aka “Mamão” and bassist Alex Malheiros, a majority of the album’s tunes make excellent use of this trio’s telepathic tightness, subtle funkiness, and melodic mastery. The album dabbles with a few different styles and rhythms, all telling Erasmo’s musical story be it Bossa Nova, Roots Rock, Hard Rock, ballads, and soulful grooves, but a certain sonic frequency or tempo alongside the autobiographical elements unite this masterwork.


          Eliza Carthy

          Anglicana

          The daughter of guitarist / vocalist Martin Carthy and vocalist Norma Waterson, Eliza Carthy has continued in her parents' footsteps and has become one of the leading lights of the new generation to carry on the folk tradition. She has almost assumed the mantle of Sandy Denny on her brilliant new album "Anglicana", her work again showcasing her ability to breathe new life into England's folk music. Eliza Carthy is one of the few people who can take this wonderful music and perform it in a totally convincing contemporary style - both true to its sources and firmly relevant to today's values. This is what traditional music in the twenty-first century is all about. A true triumph.

          Eva Cassidy

          Eva By Heart

          This album, released shortly after her death in 1996 is a poignant reminder of what a talent was lost. "Eva By Heart" is a demonstration of her versatlity and the depth and range of her vocal skills, some simply wonderful tracks.

          Eva Cassidy

          Live At Blues Alley

          At times this is the blusiest and rockiest thing Eva Cassidy recorded. "She could sing anything and make it sound like the only music that mattered", according to the Washington Post and on hearing this live set you can see why her reputation has continued to grow even after her early death at just 33 years of age.

          Eva Cassidy

          Method Actor

          Eva Cassidy recorded her first tracks as part of a 'scratch' rock band called Method Actor, who recorded songs written by a friend of hers, David Christopher, whose project it was. Since her death and the phenomenon around sales of her few recorded works this album has become much sought after since it only had a limited release on LP and cassette in 1998. Eva sings lead vocals on eight original songs as well as contributing the artwork for the album. It's in a very different rock / pop style to her later work. Original copies of this album have reached up to $500 on e-bay hence the CD reissue.

          Eva Cassidy

          Natural Woman

          A set of session tracks compiled into an album showcasing the late Eva Cassidy's vocal abilities.

          Eva Cassidy

          Songbird

          A compilation of tracks from her various albums. For those unfamiliar with her work Eva Cassidy had "one of the greatest voices of her generation" according to the Guardian and these are tuneful, melodic songs fusing folk, americana and contemporary pop effortlessly. She died aged 33.

          Eva Cassidy

          Time After Time

          Eva Cassidy had a wonderful voice and she chose songs to cover that perfectly suited her moody, yearning style - a fusion of folk and country but with rock leanings. On this release songs by Joni Mitchell, Paul Simon, Bill Withers and Cyndi Lauper rub shoulders with traditional arrangements most comfortably. Her early death was a genuine tragedy.

          Eric Chenaux

          Slowly Paradise

            Eric Chenaux makes conceptual music that’s not meant to sound conceptual. He operates among various ‘traditions’ but perhaps most broadly, Chenaux’s records grapple with the relationship between improvisation and structure in very particular, unique, idiosyncratic ways – and quite without irony or cynicism, through love. Because fundamentally, Chenaux writes love songs, which he sings in a voice honeyed and clear, while his guitar gently bends, frazzes, chortles, diverges and decomposes.

            This juxtaposition of his mellow, dexterous crooning and his highly experimental (and equally dexterous) guitar explorations, explodes even unconventional notions of singing and accompaniment, of tonal and timbral interplay between guitar and voice. As a solo artist, Chenaux’s improvisation methods are in certain literal ways solipsistic: as a singer-songwriter, he plays his guitar around and against his voice, challenging easy notions of harmony/harmoniousness, improvising ‘with himself’ in pursuit of surprising himself (and his listeners) as he unfurls ribbons of voice and instrument often to the point of seeming independence, all the better to capture – and be captured by – unforeseen, intimate moments of interdependence: a definition of freedom, as a profoundly intentional state of openness, presence and play.

            Even within avant-garde currents of folk and jazz balladry, Eric Chenaux feels like an outlier. Yet his music remains wonderfully warm, generous and fundamentally accessible in spite of its irrefutable iconoclasm. Slowly Paradise is Eric Chenaux’s new solo record. It is a lovely collection of mostly long songs guided by soothing, buttery singing and bent, fried fretwork. It is arguably Chenaux’s most assured and essential solo work, building on the critical acclaim his previous releases Guitar & Voice and Skullsplitter have rightly garnered. 

            Eric Chenaux

            Warm Weather With Ryan Driver

            Eric Chenaux is one of Toronto's most prolific and respected musical iconoclasts, an experimental guitar virtuoso with over two decades of dedicated and diverse service to an artistic community that encompasses post-punk, lo-fi, folk, multimedia composition and performance (chiefly in collaboration with modern dance) and free and improvised music.

            "Warm Weather" With Ryan Driver is Eric's third album for Constellation, which has been the conduit for his primary song-oriented solo work since 2006. Building on his fruitful collaboration with piano/synth/melodica player Ryan Driver - whose key role on the new album is signalled by his inclusion in its very title - the new record is without doubt Chenaux's most accomplished and focused work of forward-looking, contemporary balladry.

            The album is available on CD and 180g LP in 100% recycled paperboard jackets.

            New album from the ever prolific Euros Childs following on from his Summer Special album last year on his own National Elf label. This isn't a million miles away from its pop predecessor – it has its fair share of sing-a-long-choruses – but this time the subject matter is much darker. On this one the former Gorky's Zygotic Mynci frontman tackles such topics as: second home ownership (Second Home Blues), serial killer envy (Brides In The Bath), depressed cosmetic saleswomen (Avon Lady) the commodification of the self through the medium of advertising (Ooh La Oona), depressed singer songwriters (Holiday From Myself) Kidnapping (Daddy's Girl) and cyber sex (Good Time Baby). Naturally. Each song is a short story , told though the voice of a different character.

            The album was recorded in Bristol at Toybox studios with Stephen Black aka Sweet Baboo on bass & brass, Laura J Martin on flute, Stuart Kidd on drums and Marco Rea on guitar, a line up that had never played before going into the studio so the backing tracks were recorded live.

            Euros sites the following influences on this album, but does not promise they will be evident listening to the record. Randy Newman, John Prine, Dick Clement & Ian La Frenais, Godley and Creme/ 10CC (well alright), Judee Sill, Penguin Cafe Orchestra, The Roches, Barbara Woodhouse and Bert Jansch.

            Recorded earlier this year at Gus' Dungeon Studio in Cardiff by Stephen Black (aka Sweet Baboo) - House Arrest sees Euros' flair for melody and gift for story telling undiminshed on this his thirteenth album. ''All the characters in the songs are imprisoned by their thoughts and circumstances '' says Euros ''I'm probably in there somewhere but hopefully not too close to the surface''. . Euros sees inspiration far and wide on House Arrest, tackling subjects such as cannibals dining at an all you can eat restaurant (Crystal and Misty), a man throwing himself into coma to escape everyday drudgery (Happy Coma), a songwriter who's stuck in a jar whilst trying to write a song about life in a Jar (Life in a Jar), a celebrity looking back on his life whilst taking a shower (Shower) directions to a whist drive (Whist Drive) and a man who falls in love with a kitchen implement (My Colander). House Arrest is a solo album in every sense of the word, with Euros doing all the singing as well as playing all the instruments.

            "I think around 12 or so keyboards were used in the end. Mostly brought in carboot sales and charity shops over the years. One was found in a skip. They'd been hanging round the house for a long time, it was good to put them to use."

            Edwyn Collins, Carwyn Ellis & Sebastian Lewsley

            The Possibilities Are Endless

            The Possibilities Are Endless is a film, a hymn to happiness about Edwyn Collins. About finding his way back to music, to life, to understanding. Due for release by Pulse Films in UK cinemas on 7th November 2014 ‘The Possibilities. . .’ is the third feature from directing talents Edward Lovelace and James Hall. The film received its world premiere at South by Southwest earlier this year.

            "The thing about the film is....Ed and James listened and listened to me. We talked in my studio and they gave me time to develop my thoughts. It was quiet and peaceful. I knew I could trust them." - Edwyn

            "I called the film a hymn to happiness. The whole thing began with two young men discovering Edwyn's music, then his story and now look at what they've done." - Grace


            "Home Again" is Edwyn's 6th solo long player. Work began on the album at West Heath, Edwyn's North West London studio in late 2004 / early 2005 but was halted as Edwyn was struck down with a serious illness. Work to complete the album was resumed earlier this year following a long period of rehabilitation which sees Edwyn happily back creating music again. Edwyn formed his first band, The Nu-Sonics in Glasgow in 1976 and was later to form Orange Juice and the hugely influential Postcard Records on which they released a string of acclaimed singles including "Falling And Laughing" and "Simply Thrilled Honey" in the late 1970s. They went on to record four ambitious albums which fused the rhythm and drive of Chic and Stax with an edge and attitude born out of their post-punk roots; such a sound was, at the time, completely unique and their influence on subsequent waves of British guitar bands cannot be underestimated. Orange Juice disbanded in 1985 and Edwyn has subsequently enjoyed a successful solo career (his 1994 single "A Girl Like You" was a worldwide hit) and has produced a number of albums, including The Cribs 2004 long player "The New Fellas". He has released five solo albums since his debut, "Hope And Despair" in 1989.

            The 11-track album was self-produced with his long time studio partner Seb Lewsley and recorded at West Heath Studios in London during the 2nd half of 2012, except for a couple of earlier recordings.

            All songs were written by Edwyn, except Love’s Been Good To Me, a Rod McKuen cover and the album features the musicians Barrie Cadogan (Little Barrie, Primal Scream), James Walbourne (The Pretenders, Ray Davies, Pernice Brothers, Dead Flamingoes), Carwyn Ellis (Colorama, The Pretenders), Sean Read (The Rockingbirds, Dexys), David Ruffy (The Ruts, Dexys) & Paul Cook (The Sex Pistols).

            The last 12 months have seen Edwyn concentrate on running his AED record label, produce records for Vic Godard, Colorama, Charlie Boyer & The Voyeurs, Linden and London Mississippi with Seb Lewsley and begin work on a film about his life and music titled In Your Voice, In Your Heart with filmmakers Edward Lovelace & James Hall.

            STAFF COMMENTS

            Laura says: Edwyn croons his way through a selection of gorgeous slowies and floor filling soul stompers, and as ever his songwriting is second to none. Great stuff.

            Having released his last album, Understated in March 2013, Badbea is Edwyn Collins first release since moving both home and studio to Helmsdale on the North East coast of Scotland in 2014.

            Building a new studio from scratch, the impressive Clashnarrow Studios which sits on the hills overlooking Helmsdale, Collins completed work on Badbea with co-producer Sean Read (Dexys, The Rockingbirds) and long-term musical cohorts Carwyn Ellis (Colorama) & James Walbourne (The Pretenders / The Rails).

            In part inspired by his return to the village where his grandfather lived, and somewhere Edwyn spent time over the years, the album title itself, and title track, are taken from and inspired by Badbea (pronounced badbay), a dramatically located abandoned village on a cliff top five miles north of Helmsdale with a history defined by the Highland Clearances of the 18th and 19th centuries.

            Elsewhere on the album there are poignant moments of reflection, northern soul ‘stompers’ in the classic Edwyn Collins tradition, tracks remembering past times with Orange Juice and lyrics inspired by the discovery of over 30 old pre-illness lyric books unearthed while ‘de-cluttering’ before the move back to Scotland.

            His fourth long-player completed since 2005 when he suffered two strokes (it follows Home Again 2007, Losing Sleep 2010 & Understated 2013), Badbea is an eloquent and contemplative document of his remarkable and on-going rehabilitation.

            “It’s all about looking forward, I guess,” Edwyn reflects. “I’m happy. Content with life.”

            STAFF COMMENTS

            Barry says: A beautifully warm collection from Collins, showing how this legendary artist has managed to maintain his impactful sound whilst showing a more nuanced outlook, with folky songs like 'Beauty' perfectly balancing the fuller pieces, resulting in a rounded and momentous journey through a wide variety of sounds.

            Erland Cooper

            Sule Skerry

              Sule Skerry is the second album by Erland Cooper in a triptych shaped by his homeland, Orkney, and in particular by the air, sea and land as it was celebrated by Orcadian poet George Mackay Brown. His debut album, Solan Goose (an album of the year at 6Music, The Quietus, Music OHM and more) portrayed the air, and on Sule Skerry, the multi-instrumentalist turns his attention to the sea. Erland Cooper explains, “It’s a record about the sea, our relationship with the outside world, forces outside of our control but it’s also about creating a nest within that, nurturing and protecting our own sea havens, those sheltered bays, those safe places, as we step in and out, always returning back in some form”

              STAFF COMMENTS

              Matt says: Enchanted, ambroisial electro-folk meanderings here as Cooper follows up a flurry of albums over the last couple of years. Obviously a man with a lot to say, now that we're listening expect a steady stream of musical conciousness from this skilled artist!

              Eric Copeland

              Courtesy, Professionalism, Respect

              Copeland brings the (schizoid, neon, frenetic) noise for his newest LP on L.I.E.S. Kicking things off with the juddering lo-fi stomp of 'Convoy', pushing hi-passed snares and delayed synth squeals through the mincer and ending up with some mechanically recovered heat, slavered liberally atop a solid foundation of mealy kicks and shuffled hats. 'Qualified' continues where we left off where vox are concerned, taking the mean voice of a hundred robots and gating them with some brutal sample & hold abstractions. In case this wasn't enough of thematic giveaway, bit-crushed synths fire off like lasers into the neon-lit heavens, turning the casual romp through the dystopian wilderness into a climactic white-knuckle boss-fight. 
              Moving further along, and 'Doggy' presents the first indication of rhythmic convention, with lithe bass fragents flickering over a classic four-to-the-floor percussive backdrop before pulling out the flicker-machine once again to heavily treat the melodic overtones into a brittle amalgam of crystalline pulses and terse filter cuts. 
              'Ultimo' veers into lite grime territory with sqelchy digital synths weaving their way around the cut-up vocal snippets and tinny flanged cymbals (it would sound great blaring out of a nokia speaker on the back of the 168). Brilliantly futuristic but with nods to everything that has secured its passage up to this point. Copeland has always pushed the boundaries, and this is no different, it just so happens that his boundary pushing has veered squarely into the wonky lo-fi house/techno/misc zone I find so appealing. RIYL Opal Tapes / Cloudface / SNES.  

              STAFF COMMENTS

              Barry says: Brilliantly eccentric soundtrack to futuristic mishaps, last-life white-knuckle gaming and dusty sampler glitches. Superb.

              I've never met him, but I'm fairly certain Eric Copeland is a total lunatic. Don't get me wrong, he dealt in the deranged during his time in Black Dice, but since going solo on our ass, the NYC musician has disappeared through the looking glass. Wrong speed brain mulch, queasy tape loops, jacking perx, all brought together with the same narcotic glee you find at the heart of the darkweb.
              This time out Eric delivers "Trogg Modal Vol. 2" pushing his 'Freakbeat 4/4' envelope further than ever before. Self-described as “late Night Flight proto tekno,” the tracks pulse with thick layers of percussion, melodic fever dreams, and riffs wrung through a taffy puller.
              Opener "Beat It" is less a reference to a lately disgraced child molesting popstar, and instead a slamming combo of girthy bass and kick, red lining hats and overlapping synth work - generally as demented as it is danceable. "High Score Zed" scoots down the coin slot of a Jamaican arcade game, blasting out a high speed hybrid of digi-dancehall and 8-bit funk, while "United Banana" slides a morbidly obese bass sound under dreamy pads and crashing cymbals for some unorthodox house bizz. A-side closer "Pay Off" is optimistic, off kilter and kinda nonsensical in the best way possible - play this and put your lampshade on your head. Over on the flipside "BS Dropout" stomps and squelches like Krang in a washing machine, "Light Fantastic" flips e-funk and new wave into a new form of drug addled wrongness (Super intense!) and "Blazin" sounds like Mr Fingers after 7 bottles of cough syrup. Last but not least "Falo" picks up the videogame vibe, recreating a Sonic in the labyrinth ambiance but with way more bitrate. Top notch weirdshit from my favourite experimentalist.


              Eric Copeland is a founding member of New York's Black Dice. "Alien In A Garbage Dump" represents almost two years of basement jamming and collecting. At the same time he was immersed in two Black Dice albums. Consequently, there are obvious parallels in the results; an uncompromised sonic landscape. But alone, Copeland has found places one can only find alone: small inner dialogues and isolated mind caves where the idea may only last a moment, but he captures and tweaks it into a fragment of many memories. "Alien" proves to be a strangely curated time capsule of OUR time right NOW; music where birds beat-box with car-stereo subwoofers and the neighbours' espanol sings on top the Sabbath siren. With all this going on, Copeland sometimes disappears into the anonymity, playing a 'behind-the-scenes' role, pushing cords and pulling buttons, laughing because the batteries are dying. The result is a collection of songs at once uniquely urban but still strangely universal in language. Fifteen years strong in the game and somehow it's easier to see where his music is going as opposed to where it's been. The first seven songs of this release appeared as a vinyl EP by the same name put out by Paw Tracks last year. The last six songs appear as a vinyl EP named "Al Anon" put out by Catsup Plate.

              This is the first ever anthology dedicated to one of the most important figures in Guadeloupean music. Erick Cosaque is a singer-percussionist and leading figure of Gwo Ka, the traditional Guadeloupean music with a social and cultural dimension. This long-awaited event will be highly welcomed by many vinyl collectors, DJs and diggers.

              A strong, rough, rounded voice with the typical tone heard in the creole outdoor musical gatherings. Erick Cosaque’s voice is made to go over and above the two boula drums and the makè drum which are associated in general, along a few light percussions, with the Guadeloupean Gwo Ka. Whether heard at an informal street corner kout’ tanbou, during a traditional evening at someone’s place or in the musical léwoz of a community centre, his warm yet imperial voice has been known by West Indians, in the islands and in the mainland through music, radio and television thanks to a career spanning more than forty five years - about twenty solo albums, forty or so participations and collaborations with artists of all generations and genres within the Caribbean music scene.

              Although Erick Cosaque is a major figure in Gwo Ka, he managed to avoid being part of any institutional system - no label, no alliance, no funding. His voice, one of the strongest in that genre, has been significant since the early ‘70s for restoring the original spontaneous and rebellious spirit present in Gwo Ka with artistic creations starting in the age of vinyl and continuing in the digital era.


              Elvis Costello and The Roots have announced a collaborative album entitled Wise Up Ghost which is exclusively released.

              The existence of the record was first revealed by ?uestlove as an aside during an interview with Billboard Magazine in January and a small number of test pressings were distributed as white labels on Record Store Day on the 20th of April. Most of the sessions took place in secret at Feliz Habitat Studios in the dead of night, while others were in plain sight at Costello’s Hookery Crookery Studios.

              Elvis described the record as “the shortest distance between here and there” and containing “both rhythm and what is read”. Ahmir says, “It's a moody, brooding affair, cathartic rhythms and dissonant lullabies. I went stark and dark on the music, Elvis went HAM on some ole Ezra Pound shit.”

              Elvis Costello And The Imposters

              Look Now

                Elvis Costello and The Imposters – Steve Nieve (keyboards), Davey Faragher (bass), Pete Thomas (drums) – have made a sensational new album that ranks alongside the best work this singularly great artist has ever produced.

                Recorded in Hollywood, New York City and Vancouver, British Columbia, ‘Look Now’ is beautiful in its simplicity, reflective in its lyrical vision, surrounded by melodies and orchestrations that are nothing short of heavenly. It’s the first album Costello has made with The Imposters since the 2008 release of ‘Momofuku’ and his first new album since the acclaimed 2013 Roots collaboration, ‘Wise Up Ghost’.

                Anyone anywhere in the world who has seen Elvis Costello and The Imposters live can testify to their unmitigated swagger. Costello’s suspicion that it was time to return to the studio was confirmed while on the ‘Imperial Bedroom & Other Chambers’ tour of the USA, last summer and he realized the power and sheer musicality of The Imposters had never really been fully captured on one record.

                Brought to you by the label responsible for Whitest Boy Alive, Jens Lekman and The Tough Alliance, "Secrets Adrfift" is the new album from Erik de Vahl. Erik is from the abandoned industrial town Kramfors, located in the middle of the majestic nature scenery of the north part of Sweden, which shines through in his mystic work. Here he has prepared a shimmering mini-universe of his own, for you to peep in to. It seems like he built it from the broken pieces and leftovers from conventional song writing. Listening to the anti-structured pop fragments that are "Secrets Adrift" feels like a new friend whispering secrets in your ear.

                One of Brazil’s most prolific artists, Eumir Deodato has participated in the creation of over 450 albums, racked up 16 platinum records, won a Grammy (and received two more nominations), and sold over 250 million records in the USA alone. Over the course of his career, he has written for, arranged music by and played with artists including Frank Sinatra, Tom Jobim, Kool & The Gang, Earth, Wind & Fire, Marcos Valle, Aretha Franklin and Bjork, among others.

                At the height of Deodato’s productivity in the early 70s, Os Catedraticos 73 was recorded between Rio de Janeiro and New York, featuring a Brazilian rhythm section comprising Azymuth drummer Ivan ‘Mamao’ Conti, percussion master Orlandivo, and Sergio Barroso on bass, while the horn section features some of the big apple’s top players from the CTI in-house brass.

                A firm favourite with rare-groove enthusiasts and fans of Latin jazz alike, Deodato melds the musical sensibility of post-bossa nova Brazilian jazz with North American soul & funk, and the explosive Latin influences of ‘70s New York. Os Catedraticos 73 certainly swings harder than some of Deodato’s earlier releases and opening track ‘Arranha Ceu’ (Skyscrapers) is a euphoric dance floor classic, which has been lighting up clubs for years.

                FORMAT INFORMATION

                LP includes MP3 Download Code.

                Rarely does an artist appear, as if out of thin air, with a full body of work where lyrically lush songs carry you into other worlds as if they were your own. Erin Durant's second album, Islands is an odyssey of sorts, with songs that blur the line between reality and fiction. Produced by TV On The Radio’s Kyp Malone, the eight songs deliver clarity within mystery and adventure in their uncluttered vignettes. “The New York-via-New Orleans songwriter recalls Joni circa For the Roses, or Joanna Newsom at her most freewheeling, on this lovely, shaggy piano ode to love lost,” writes The Guardian. Stereogum writes she "makes breezy, romantic songs that boast the vocal effervescence of Regina Spektor with the rootsy introspection of Julie Byrne.”

                Born and raised in New Orleans, Durant has been based in New York for over a decade. She composes most songs on piano, songs that tend to unfold structurally like a memory or a scene from a movie. As a performer, Durant usually transports a 232-pound ¾ size piano to venues without one. To hear her play the instrument makes plain her case for the extra effort. Her music is rooted in an ongoing dialogue between the physicality of her playing and the high, clear tone of her voice. Enmeshed with one another, it’s a display of an artist in full possession of herself and vision. Islands sprawls out in front of you, weaving disparate stories into an overarching narrative. Islands is a continuously shifting landscape, with a knowing nod to the inevitability of these shifts. Durant’s collaboration with Malone introduced an expansiveness in sound. She knew she wanted the songs to be fuller. They welcomed more instrumentation into the fold, including a complete rhythm section, the hum of pedal steel, and warm flourishes of brass and woodwinds. These are generous songs intended to breathe. They never fall into a grid. Instead, they pause and gallop, expand and contract, and pass through time unhurried. 

                FORMAT INFORMATION

                Coloured LP Info: Sand coloured vinyl.

                E-Versions #1

                Kahn / Mingo

                  After a string of heavy duty remixes in 2013, Mark E enjoyed a winter break spending quality solo time in the studio to launch the E-version series on Merc. The inaugural release sees Mark making his return to the world of edits he took by storm in 2009. On the A-side, he applies a punchy, peak time rework to Chaka Khan's peerless anthem of female empowerment, "I'm Every Woman". True to form, he rocks a pounding looped intro, subtly dropping conga and bongo rolls, guitar licks and vocal snippets to tease the crowd into a frenzy ("R+B Drunkie" style) before letting loose with the anthemic vocals. The production is perfectly balanced, powered up and filter to make a killer peaktime groove. On the flip, Mark offers something irresistable to the techno crowd in the form of Mingo. A persistent bass loop is driven on by the rapid fire ride, while the smudged and pitched down vocal forms a trippy duet with a depth charge synth note. Just when the intensity is about to take its toll, the Merc man stitches in some rattling ethnic percussion to offer a moment of respite before twisting the beats out again for the close. 


                  “What came before you is why you’re here now,” declares the man born Eric Brandon Pulido. “So embrace both the past and the present.”

                  The current frontman of Texan legends Midlake embraces both past and present times for his glorious debut solo album, To Each His Own, under his new enigmatic alias E.B. The Younger. It’s a deeply personal record, rooted in Pulido’s love of warm, glowing rock, folk and country hues that came of age in the 1970s woven with contemporary recalibrations: guitars ripple, sigh and sizzle alongside gliding keyboards over crisp, choppy and becalmed rhythms. Pulido’s lyrics equally look back and forth, philosophising about his place in the world, the choices he’s made, and where they have taken him.

                  Or, as he describes To Each His Own, “an eleven-song journey through the life and times of a wayward Midlaker seeking to find purpose in an uncharted land. Will he find his way? Listen, and ye shall find.”

                  Pulido’s “wayward” phase began in 2014 with a break from Midlake, “to invest time in kids and musical projects less physically demanding”, he says. His first project was the transatlantic collective BNQT, a self-described ‘poor man’s Travelling Wilburys’ featuring Pulido, Ben Bridwell (Band of Horses), Fran Healy (Travis), Jason Lytle (Granddaddy) and Alex Kapranos (Franz Ferdinand) who recorded the 2017 album BNQT – Volume 1. But To Each His Own is all Pulido – or rather, E.B. The Younger.

                  “It’s an antiquated way of naming a younger member of a family,” he explains. “I’m expressing, simply, that something greater came before me. It’s countering the idea in today’s culture that everything revolves around ourselves, that we’re the most important thing in the world. I feel that humility is a lost virtue – you only have to look at America’s current leader - which I want this record to represent. Honesty, empathy, love.”

                  In this case, honesty begins at home. Solo debutantes typically distance themselves from their musical past, but Pulido freely acknowledges Midlake’s presence on To Each His Own, from the three Midlakers in his backing band to an album title that stems from his memories of band discussions.

                  Says Pulido: “It’s very common in bands to have artistic differences, and we were no exception. Saying ‘To each his own’ was almost a way to collectively acquiesce and move forward when differences would arise. It’s OK that we feel differently, because both opinions are valid. The phrase is also about me doing something on my own, a statement that it’s OK to define who you are outside of what has defined you before.”

                  With Pulido on lead vocals and acoustic guitar, he drafted in Midlakers (and BNQT contributors) Joey McClellan (electric guitar), McKenzie Smith (drums) and Jesse Chandler (flute), who dovetail with Scott Lee (bass), Daniel Creamer (keyboards) and Beau Bedford (keyboards) from local country-funksters The Texas Gentlemen to form an empathic ‘alt.Wrecking Crew’ of session

                  players. Bedford is also the album’s principal producer, while studio engineer and Centromatic drummer Matt Pence acted as the overarching producer, alongside Pulido, as well as adding percussion and occasional drums.

                  As Pulido explains, “Midlake self-produced and recorded everything, but as with BNQT, I wanted to embrace collaboration. I’d present songs with just voice and acoustic guitar and ask the musicians where they heard things going, and so we built the songs up organically.”

                  Within that organic build, Pulido still had specific ideas in mind. He singles out the late, great Harry Nilsson as a key influence. “Midlake songs were often cerebral and minor-key and I wanted some of mine to be more playful and buoyant and major key, which Harry did so well, while still making deep, thoughtful music.”

                  Pulido also hears traces of The Eagles, Cat Stevens, Joni Mitchell, Wings and CS&N in To Each His Own, plus an “eighties vibe” to the record’s freewheeling lead single ‘Used To Be’, inspired by The Last Waltz, the film documentary about Pulido’s all-time favourites, The Band. As he recalls, “The guys are sitting backstage playing ‘Old Time Religion’, and Robbie Robertson says, ‘It’s not like it used to be!’, which has always stuck with me. But it’s OK by me that it’s not like it used to be. Embrace where you’re at, and look forward. Be both the old and the young.”

                  The Old and The Young is a familiar concept to Midlake fans, as a songtitle from the band’s last album Antiphon. In one sense, ‘The Young’ are also represented here by Conrad Lee Pulido, Eric’s three-year-old son, whose uninhibited dancing to calypso rhythms (from Harry Belafonte and Nilsson tracks) inspires the carefree Tropicália of ‘CLP’. A similarly summery vibe energises ‘On An Island’, inspired by an artist retreat (on the island of Nantucket) where Pulido, “focused on, and finished, several of the songs for the album.” But again Pulido finds a double meaning: “To be an island means you don’t live or march to the beat of anyone else’s drum.”

                  Self-determination also defines the sumptuous, soft-rocking “When The Time Comes” where Pulido gently mocks himself as the so-called ‘artist’ who chose to “follow the dream” but without any guarantee of job security or a pension. Moreover, the exquisite ‘Hope Arrives’ recognises that making art typically involves self-doubt, as Midlake experienced. As Pulido recalls, “I felt that fear controlled the obstacles that existed for the band. But when hope arrives, fear will disappear, and peace will come.”

                  Midlake also figure in the acoustic, sparse ‘Monterey’, named after the Californian idyll where the band played their last show to date, after which Pulido suggested a break would benefit all: to step off the merry-go-round for a while after riding it together for 15 years. “I said, we’ll pick things back up if and when it makes sense to everyone, trust me,” he recalls. “And I was at peace with our decision.”

                  The closing title track emanates a palpable sense of peace while crystalising Pulido’s past-present/old-young mindset: “I’ve been about all alone / I’ve never felt so good before… And what we did before / No I do not ignore”. With a new BNQT album in the works and, if all goes to plan, a Midlake album to follow, Pulido is already looking forward. But his present is E.B The Younger, and his effortlessly melodic, gorgeous songs invested with honesty, empathy and love. Listen, and ye shall find.


                  STAFF COMMENTS

                  Barry says: Half way between poppy Americana and folky Indie, Pulido is more than capable of penning an effective tune, with richly textured acoustic instrumental backdrops forming the perfect base layer for his unmistakeable vocal talents. Warm, rich and beautifully immersive.

                  E.C. Illa

                  Grade School Dropout

                  Nice slice of Chicago rap history here with a limited white vinyl release of E.C. Illa's Kanye produced cutz "Strugglin'" and "Mask and Pump". Produced by none other than trainer mogul and celebrated political thinker Kanye West, just before he hit it big with the College Dropout LP on Jay-Z's Rocc-A-Fella. As you'd expect from '02 Kanye, we're in peak Chipmunk Soul territory, all smooth grooves given that sweet MPC bump to compliment Illa's flow and lyrical dexterity.

                  STAFF COMMENTS

                  Millie says: Limited seven-inch Grade School Dropout hits all the right spots, the production from legendary Kanye West is woven in with Dilla-esque beats. Brought back from the depths of 2008 this is what you need to be listening to!

                  E.m.m.a

                  Mindmaze / Pumpkin Emoji

                  Following a series of standout releases on stateside imprint, Astral Plane, E.M.M.A returns to Coyote Records for the first time proper with new 12”, ‘Mindmaze / Pumpkin Emoji’. Having first provided a remix on Spokes’ inaugural EP (‘Green Eyes’) for the label back in 2015, E.M.M.A has since kick-started her Angel Food radio show on NTS alongside Aimee Cliff, and also established Producer Girls - a nationwide workshop initiative aimed at helping aspiring women get into music production.

                  On ‘Mindmaze’, described by E.M.M.A. herself as ‘medieval funky’ and originally made as a special for Mumdance on Rinse FM, she pokes fun at the club, going in sample-heavy and re-fixing anthemic Windows 95-era melodies over a stampeding, heavyset 4x4 beat. “This tune is a homage to the Encarta 95 CD ROM”, she explains. On the flip meanwhile, ‘Pumpkin Emoji’ references the glossy, crystalline textures and lo-slung 808 bass of early E.M.M.A. gems like 2014’s ‘Light Years’; a potent reminder of why she remains one of the UK’s most innovative and quietly rebellious club producers. 

                  Gerard Hanson fans are currently enjoying a feast of new and old music from the electro stalwart, with Frustated Funk reissuing a double 12" a few months ago and now this brand new LP on Forgotten Future.

                  One of the most revered and respected of the knob twiddlers, Hanson's aliases (Convextion, ERP), since 1995, have created some of the most unique and atmosphere-riddled pieces to have graced the techno and electro cannon. His scarce, quality-controlled output, coupled with his shyness towards publicity and an almost none existent touring schedule have earned his a diehard set of fans across the world, culminating in a now historical European debut here in Manchester in 2006 at the old Rampant Lion pub for (Wet Play precursor night), Detroit Public Radio - !!!

                  Anyway, what's in store on "Exomoon" I hear you ask? Well, the most emotion-charged neon-lit futurescapes I've heard for a while. Imagine if you were piloting a drone around nocturnal Tokyo in the year 2055. The reduction in combustion of fossil fuels resulting in a serene, quiet and crystal clear environment. You're darting around at sky-scraper height, surveying the cityscape in your precision, hovering craft. These are the kind of images I get right through "Exomoon", but everyone will have their own interpretation - the common theme evoking lucid dreams of science fiction megaworlds; A.I.-induced calm and an omnipresent, highly sentient, alien-robot hybrid that governs over all.

                  Highly, highly recommended! 


                  STAFF COMMENTS

                  Matt says: Gradually elevating himself to mythical demigod of electro, sitting alongside high priets Drexciya and Aux88, Convextion's ERP alias ushers forth a new era for hi-def electro. Harnessing new energy models and renewable fuels, this wide-spectrum trip should satify the most die-hard electro fans.

                  E&D

                  Not Enough / Runaway - Inc. Mall Grab & Ali Berger Remixes

                  UKG-vocal-tech hybrids here from new project E&D who drop two OGs for FCR.

                  "Not Enough" is anthemic enough to be heard across the mainstream Radio networks whilst being delicious enough to rock your local dance. A typical stylistic vocal is chopped n pitched before being coupled with a flapping sub bass line and shoulder dropped beats. The track is remixed by new school rinser Mall Grab who puts emphasis on a Balihu-styled woodblock rhythm adds some peppery breaks and generally takes the track into subliminal territories.


                  "Runaway" graces the flip, a UKG effort with killer vocal and tight arrangement, rocketing through a verse-chorus structure with a hook to die for. Ali Berger get busy on the remix, taking it proper deep and heady, perfect for extended sessions at Barbarellas, Space or any of the holiday house destinations over party season. Recommended!


                  E+

                  Poison Control EP

                    The second of January’s new Polytechnic Youth releases is a 6 trk 7” EP of lo-fi, 4-track home recordings of minimal synth | primitive drum machine goodness. With heavy leanings towards PY’s favourite era of killer small run, often private press experimental electronic releases, dressed in hand assembled, very DIY packaging. This one not only sounds the part but looks it too.

                    Debuting here, e+ is the performing name for this enigmatic Ontario, Canada based solo, electronic project. 6 dark pieces of exploratory electronica, delivered in the kind of lo-fi tape hiss you’d find those early Flying Saucer Attack drenched in, this in a way is the electronic equivalent; nice n murky and lo-fi and the sleeve it’s delivered in also harks back to those glorious post punk, DIY days- a hand stapled, numbered pressing of 250 in flipover style sleeves just like the old days…. Lovely record, and quite reaffirming in a way, that you still see 7”’s like this….

                    Polish septet EABS apply an innovative approach to jazz, distilling it through the prism of hip-hop, blending it with elements of soul, funk and electronic music. ‘Slavic Spirits’ was 2 years in the making and contains 100% original material. They are joined by 22a head-honcho Tenderlonious who lends his exceptional soprano saxophone and flute playing to all seven tracks.

                    After their very well-received 2017 debut album ‘Repetitions (Letters to Krzysztof Komeda)’, focusing on the lesser-known works of the legendary Polish composer, the Wroclaw-based EABS decided to further expand this lead and released two more vinyl records, ‘Live At Jazz Club Hipnoza (Katowice)’ and ‘Kraksa / Svantetic’, the latter recorded directly on tape and released via 22a, which crowned the “Komeda triptych”. The astounding reception of these releases built up loyal following outside of their native Poland and whet listeners’ appetite for completely new recordings. For this LP the musicians turned to Slavic mythology and Polish demonology, while pondering upon the contemporary spiritual condition of Poles. The enigmatic “Slavic melancholy” remains the main inspiration, as the band tried to extract it from their own DNA. ‘Slavic Spirits’ is an endeavour to get in touch with the world of a long and brutally llost culture which, due to lack of sources, will never be thoroughly explored.

                    STAFF COMMENTS

                    Millie says: EABS continue to impress with their unique jazz sound on the 22a label, paving the way on the nu jazz era.

                    Each Other (aka Justin Strauss & Max Pask)

                    Be Nice To Each Other

                    Justin Strauss and Max Pask have joined up to form the new project Each Other, who will release their self-titled debut EP ‘Be Nice To Each Other’ on February 7th, 2020 via Soulwax/2manydjs label DEEWEE. While Strauss and Pask have DJ’d together on numerous occasions, this is the first time that they’ve collaborated on a production project.

                    The EP finds Each Other creating an eclectic range of sounds in the space of just three tracks. The opener ‘Same As It Never Was’ is the most immediate of the set, becoming more hypnotic as the minimalist topline buries itself into your subconscious. The downtempo ‘Burn It Down’ then darkens the mood, feeling closer to a dystopian sci-fi soundtrack than an underground club classic, before the playful and progressive ‘Six Weeks’ up the energy with jittering beats, sparkling synths and a cooly understated vocal.

                    “What we were trying to do and what we’ve hopefully achieved was to merge our influences with a nod to what many consider to be the ‘golden age’ of New York,” explains Justin Strauss. “You don’t realise that these periods were becoming important markers in history when we were living through them. It only comes later with the added benefit of time. I hope that in years to come, history will find a place for what we’re doing now” - Each Other.

                    As with all DEEWEE releases, ‘Be Nice To Each Other’ was recorded produced and mixed at DEEWEE

                    Long awaited new full length album from Sonic Boom, and it's packed full of atonal wonder.

                    FORMAT INFORMATION

                    CD Info: Limited edition (500 copies) available in triple colour neon case.

                    Earl Brutus

                    Tonight You Are The Special One (Expanded Edition)

                      Earl Brutus achieved notoriety and cult status with the release of their debut album Your Majesty… We Are Here. Their attention grabbing interviews and gigs attracted wider interest and they sign to Island Records via Fruition. They released a second long player, Tonight You Are The Special One, and several singles including The SAS And The Glam That Goes With It and Come Taste My Mind (“masterful examples of raging techno-pop” - Select ) and Larky.

                      The band continued to play chaotic shows and the last ever gig is at Hammersmith Working Men’s Club on 7th April 2004 and the last track from that gig, Teenage Taliban, is included on the 2CD edition along with a demo recorded in William Reid’s (Jesus And Mary Chain) front room. Other bonus tracks include all the single b-sides sequenced by the band.

                      The art direction on this re-issue has been done by Scott King who realised the concepts for the original release and singles. The album sleeve is included in Q magazine’s 100 Best Album Sleeves Of All Time in 2001.

                      FORMAT INFORMATION

                      2xCD Info: The 2CD set is packaged in a tri-fold digipack and comes with a 16 page booklet with sleevenotes by Ian Harrison.

                      Earl Brutus

                      Your Majesty...We Are Here (Expanded Edition)

                        Earl Brutus are Nick Sanderson (Clock DVA, Jesus And Mary Chain, World Of Twist), Gordon King and Jim Fry (World Of Twist), Rob Marche (JoBoxers, Subway Sect) with Shins and Stuart Boreman.

                        Earl Brutus formed in 1993 and release a handful of singles before their debut album Your Majesty… We Are Here on Deceptive Records in 1996. They are chaotic, glam-rock, glitter-stomp British Pop. They think Bowie, T-Rex, Kraftwerk and The Fall. Their chaotic live shows became folklore and their reviews and interviews were always impressive. Your Majesty… featured in Q Magazine’s Top 50 Albums of the Year in 1996 and in 1000 Albums To Hear Before You Die.

                        Your Majesty… has been long unavailable and is now re-issued.

                        The two CD edition also includes all the b-sides sequenced by the band and an unreleased David Arnold remix of Life’s Too Long, the rare Alan Vega (Suicide) version of On Me Not In Me and Earl Brutus Display Purchasing Power, both commercially available for the first time.

                        FORMAT INFORMATION

                        2xCD Info: The 2CD set is housed in a tri-fold digipack sleeve with a 16 page booklet, all designed by artist, Scott King, and contains sleevenotes by Ian Harrison

                        Earl Sweatshirt

                        Doris

                        'Doris' is the debut studio album by Odd Future member Earl Sweatshirt. Doris features guest appearances from Odd Future members Domo Genesis, Frank Ocean, Casey Veggies, Tyler, the Creator, along with Vince Staples, RZA and Mac Miller. Production was primarily handled by Sweatshirt under the pseudonym randomblackdude and production duo Christian Rich. Additional production was provided by Matt Martians, The Neptunes, RZA, Samiyam, BadBadNotGood, Frank Ocean, and Tyler, The Creator.

                        Upon its release, 'Doris' was met with universal critical acclaim from music critics, including perfect scores by The Guardian and Los Angeles Times, which praised Sweatshirt's rhyme schemes and lyrics along with the gritty underground production.

                        FORMAT INFORMATION

                        LP includes MP3 Download Code.

                        Earl Sweatshirt

                        I Don't Like S**t, I Don't Go Outside

                        Odd Future rap collective member Earl Sweatshirt returns with his sophomore long player. From the album title onwards 'I Don’t Like S**t, I Don't Go Outside' in another introspective set of rhymes from Sweatshirt (Thebe Neruda Kgositsile to his mum) which eschew the wide scope of Kendrick or bombast of Kanye in favour of something smaller, more intimate. His mainly self-produced beats are pitched down and sludgy, lifted from the gloom by light-fingered jazzy keyboards here and there, while his vocal flow tongue-twists around the rhythms like a verbal dexterity veteran. At just 30 minutes in length the album doesn't have room for the usual look-who-I-know roll call of guest MCs, with just a handful of cameos from A$AP Mob’s Dash, Ratking’s Wiki, Cutthroat Boyz member Vince Staples and skateboarder Na’kel, leaving Sweatshirt to provide the lion's share of raps - a good thing in our book. A record that will leave you wanting more.

                        FORMAT INFORMATION

                        LP includes MP3 Download Code.

                        "Some Rap Songs" is the follow-up to 2015’s critically acclaimed "I Don’t Like Shit, I Don’t Go Outside". In the New Year of 2018, Earl promised the release of new music on Twitter, which would bring an end to his close to 4 year absence from the rap game.

                        After performing multiple unreleased tracks during live shows, and following a personally rough year for the rapper, including the death of his father, Keorapetse Kgositsile, Earl indicated on social media that new music was imminent as we neared the closure of 2018.

                        During the first week of November, Earl’s social media pages released three daily videos, each featuring complex visuals and snippets of forthcoming audio, strongly believed to be linked to the forthcoming album, with the final video confirming an upcoming single titled “Nowhere2go.”

                        The album was finally announced on Earl’s Instagram account, after having released the second single for the album, “The Mint.” Fans will not be disappointed: his distinctive, effortless drawl winding through suffocated, sweltering beats; taking cues from the stop-start, cut-n-paste ethic of Madlib and with a similar, trunk-boppin' weight in the low end. Infact, it's this attention to the low end that I guess sets it apart from the two albums which precede it, which tended to be lo-fi in nature and somewhat tailored towards headphone listening. This new album is gonna BANG in the jeep or the club, while his lyrical content is as on point and as poignant as ever; immediately introspective, cryptic and littered with observation. In short, there's no one quite like Earl, and "Some Rap Songs" sees the troubled rapper working through his trials and tribulations with an honest, analytical and at times heartfelt methodology. A masterpiece!


                        Steve Earle & The Del McCoury Band

                        The Mountain

                          Originally released in 1999 and widely regarded as one of the best albums of that year, New West is proud to reissue one of Steve Earle's finest works. Released in 1999, The Mountain marks a radical departure from Steve Earle's previous works as it was his first wholly bluegrass album. He later revealed that he had made the album as a tribute to the founder of bluegrass music the legendary Bill Monroe, who had died in 1996. In order to help flesh out the songs he had written for the album, Steve Earle called upon the famous bluegrass band of Del McCoury; widely regarded as one of the finest bluegrass bands on the planet who at that point. The album was a critical success and yielded Earle's 7th Grammy nomination when it was nominated for 'Best Bluegrass Album' in 2000.

                          FORMAT INFORMATION

                          2xLP Info: Available for the first time ever on heavy duty 180g vinyl.

                          ‘The Saint Of Lost Causes’ is the eighth album from American roots troubadour Justin Townes Earle. Earle’s latest album finds a songwriter and artist who is unflinching and unequivocal in his truth.

                          When writing this album, Earle focused on a different America - the disenfranchised and the downtrodden, the oppressed and the oppressors, the hopeful and the hopeless. There’s the drugstore-cowboy-turnedcop- killer praying for forgiveness (‘Appalachian Nightmare’) and the common Michiganders persevering through economic and industrial devastation (‘Flint City Shake It’); the stuck mother dreaming of a better life on the right side of the California tracks (‘Over Alameda’) and the Cuban man in New York City weighed down by a world of regret (‘Ahi Esta Mi Nina’); the ‘used up’ soul desperate to get to New Orleans (‘Ain’t Got No Money’) and the ‘sons of bitches’ in West Virginia poisoning the land and sea (‘Don’t Drink The Water’). These are individuals and communities in every corner of the country, struggling through the ordinary - and sometimes extraordinary - circumstances of everyday life.

                          Stacey Earle And Mark Stuart

                          Never Gonna Let You Go

                          Husband and wife team who have both enjoyed previous success in their own right as well as together. Stacey's endearingly evocative style was first heard in 1990 in duet with her older brother, country renegade Steve Earle. "Never Gonna Let You Go" is their second album, built around the couple's obvious chemistry together.

                          The Earlies

                          Gone For The Most Part

                            The final piece of the Five-Part 10" series that completes the vinyl version of the fantastic album "The Enemy Chorus". These three songs show the band at their most cinematic… soaring above the high rise buildings and into the clouds then collapsing into a monster funk jam before descending into the angular dark prog of "Bad Is As Bad Does".

                            FORMAT INFORMATION

                            Ltd 10" Info: Ltd edition of 500 copies only – this 10" is packaged in a very nice box with room to house all five 10"s from this series. ONE PER PERSON!

                            The Earlies follow their critically adored 2004 debut "These Were The Earlies", with the release of their second album, "The Enemy Chorus". Produced by The Earlies and Tom Knott and recorded in Texas, Manchester and Burnley, "The Enemy Chorus" builds on the approach of "These Were The Earlies" with a rich and expansive sound, textured with an original progressive edge. Standout tracks such as "Burn The Liars", "Foundation And Earth", "Enemy Chorus" and "When The Wind Blows" evoke elements of The Flaming Lips, Spiritualized, Brian Wilson and Sigur Ros, yet the Texan/Mancunian quartet remain resolutely individual. The sound here is deep, lush and with a tasty, more electronic bottom-end (Warp Records?) this feels like a more modern record than their debut. The layers and attention to detail are staggering; it's shaping up to be a proper headphone masterpiece, an album to go on a journey with and another mysterious chapter for one of our most trusted bands. They're magicians!

                            Earl

                            What Are You Waitin' For?

                            "What Are You Waitin' For?" is a provocative and instantly engaging electro-pop offering, with heavy bass lines, scratchy guitars and a melody so catchy you'll be stuck with it for weeks.

                            Early Day Miners

                            The Treatment

                              The Early Day Miners new album, "The Treatment", speaks to the powers of reinvention in more than one way. After years of building gorgeous and sprawling guitar rock epics, Early Day Miners have trimmed their sound into shorter, tighter songs with a decidedly pop edge to them. They have also slimmed their line up down from as many as eight members to the lean four-piece outfit of Dan Burton (guitar, vocals, keys), John Dawson (guitar), Marty Sprowles (drums) and Johnny 'Yuma' Richardson (bass). Even in the album's lyrics, the yearning allure of reinvention is ever present.

                              Early Mammal

                              Take A Lover

                                Early Mammal are a 3-piece based in the home of South London Sludge, Dropout Studios. Formed in 2012

                                Early Mammal are: Rob Herian - guitar, drone box & vocals, Ben Davis - drums & Ben Tat - bass & baritone guitars

                                The band released two albums in 2013 and received strong reviews. Debut album 'Horror at Pleasure' was released in April of that year on Devouter. Denis Belindir provided cosmos expanding synth on this brooding dark invitation through the woods of the mind. The album, as with all to date was recorded live at Drop out over the course of 3 days. The LP streams continuously combining raw power and claustrophobic psyche blues, coaxing and sometimes dragging the listener through its journey. Influences of Captain Beefheart, Aphrodite's Child, White Hills, Hawkwind and Uncle Acid and The Deadbeats can be heard:

                                Less than half a year later the band released 'My Fire' on Convoy records. This album found Dan Davies (Wolf people) joining to record a more experimental late night driving experience through psych-rock, Denis Belindir's distinctive Turkish tinged synth really taking the trip to different levels.

                                ‘I have been blown away by this promo twice today! Think Pink Floyd soundtrack work circa 1970 and Irmin Schmidt's incredible 3 album run of 'filmmusik' + 'Toy Planet' 1980-81. Yes THAT good! Eurorock pulses; a bit of SanFranjam; driving around mainland Europe in the early 70's in a lorry left over from the war, worried about the last generation's involvement...easily the best recording I've yet heard from them but, once again, nothing like their tremendous live show, Valve amps wall of cabs- everyone dies overdrive...but the grooves are still tight’ TOBY MEARING RADIO SHOW

                                Two well received albums on Devouter and Convoy lead to the band supporting Bong, and Baba Yaga’s Hut gigs around London, including the Raw Power Festival 2014

                                Third album, 'Take a Lover' is proudly released September 2015 through Riot Season records. After the sudden departure of Denis Belindir on synth, the band regrouped with a reinvigorated sound. Taking the experimentation of My Fire, the narcotic muscularity of Horror at Pleasure, this album represents a new chapter out of the woods and showing greater depth. With the arrival of Ben Tat on bass and baritone guitars, the band shares two common ancestors now: Elks and 85bears. The upcoming release reflects the sound of a lineup finding order through the entropy of extended jams and developing their sound. Recorded at Dropout studios by the band. Take a Lover is live and captures a stream of single takes from two days of winter, December 2014. It has become the catalyst to yet again prolific recording and sets the tone for where Early Mammal are going next.

                                FORMAT INFORMATION

                                LP includes MP3 Download Code.

                                George Earnest & Der Opium Queen

                                Time Heals All Wounds

                                Echovolt have proven themselves excellent exponents of high grade house music. Through some expertly timed re-issues and ingenious originals they've become a fully established tour de force on the modern landscape.

                                "Time Heals All Wounds" is a new EP from George Earnest & Der Opium Queen containing three tracks that perfectly encapsulate the deep, epic and euphoric sides of house music that seem to epitomize Echovolt's ethos.

                                "Ultralush" kicks off with swirling pads, ascending arps and evocative bird song; it's that hi-def deep house sound with rainforest inflections that we go absolutely ape shit for here at Picc HQ.

                                "Rainy Day" blends wistful pad lines, dewy-eyed keys and beautifully formulated sfx with a smooth and simple broken beat for a moment of dreamlike relaxation with just enough thrust for you to bob your head to it.

                                Finally, "Time Heals All Wounds" ends the journey on a heavenly high note, a meandering organ part highlighting all that is good in the world as it travels through shuffled house drums, woozy synth riffs and a raise-your-sprits-to-the-sky chord progression. Add that impeccably timed, incredibly evocative spoken word vocal part (that appears just at the right time) and you have, my friends, a slice of deep house perfection few will rival all year! Form an orderly queue please!




                                STAFF COMMENTS

                                Matt says: The title track, "Time Heals All Wounds" is a beautiful and blissful house track that's gonna be in my box all Summer and probably all Autumn. I suggest you check it out!

                                Earth Girl Helen Brown

                                Four Satelittes Vol. 1

                                  The Earth Girl Helen Brown Center For Planetary Intelligence Band (E.G.H.B.C.F.P.I.B.) is pleased to join forces with In the Red Records and Empty Cellar Records, presenting the first vinyl release of their protolanetary series Four Satelittes Vol. 1. Double gate-folded LP (three sides + etching), the release is a collection of songs and information from the band’s 2017 consumer recycled cassette series: Spring: Mercury: Fire, Summer: Mars: War, Fall: Saturn: Communication, and Winter: Venus: Love.

                                  The band, related media artists and technicians includes: Heidi Alexander, Jamie Barron, Jamin Barton, Eric Bauer, Aylin Beyce, Emilee Booher, Ryan Browne, Tim Cohen, Grace Cooper, Dave Cousin, Brad Caulkins, Mikal Cronin, Bart Davenport, Brigid Dawson, John Dwyer, Chris Fallon, Lars Finberg, James Finch Jr., Davin Givhan, Dylan Hadley, Dustin Hamman, Kiran Harlow, Wilder Harlow, Graeme Gibson, Tahlia Harbour, Anna Hillburg, Douglas Hilsinger, Warren Huegel, Emmett Kelly, Nora Keys, Shannon Lay, Raven Mahon, Rusty Miller, Charlie Moonheart, Jack Name, Ethan Novikoff, Tim Presley, Ty Segall, Dave Sitek, Sean Smith, Sonny Smith, Kelley Stoltz, Enrique Tena, Alica Vanden Heuvel, Lida Vanden Heuvel and Mikey Young.

                                  FORMAT INFORMATION

                                  2xLP includes MP3 Download Code.

                                  Earth The Californian Love Dream

                                  Porn Star

                                  Following on from their limited edition 7" only release "In The Garden", and fresh from being one of the most talked about bands at this years SXSW festival, Nottingham's Earth The Californian Love Dream return with another short blast of riffy, rock'n'roll. There's a touch of Queens Of The Stoneage about it with it's heavy chugging guitar and drums, but with a more youthful, punchy arrogance, and weighing in at under 90 seconds, it leaves you wanting more....

                                  FORMAT INFORMATION

                                  7" Info: The 7" is limited to 500 copies.

                                  CDS Info: The CD single is limited to 200 copies only.

                                  The label Ziemia (Polish for earth) is centred around a growing group of friends from Poland. Administered by Bartosz Kruczyński (Earth Trax), Adam Brocki and Jan Wójcicki (Private Press), it is a natural extension of a studio in the heart of Warsaw, where the majority of their music is being created. Ambient sounds and club vibes make the foundation layers of this collaboration, and you can see this theme evolving in some of their first releases on labels such as Growing Bin, Shall Not Fade, Indigo Aera, Phonica Records and Dopeness Galore. Ziemia's focus positions itself between club music and ethereal with an Eastern European background.

                                  The first release encaptures a moment when all three label founders started to utilise dub techniques in their club sound. Private Press explore an ethereal side of techno, which is in contrast to the duoís previous releases. A1 and A3 are essentially beatless and meditative, while B2 plunges into reggae sounds with a pulsating kick drum, strong bassline and plucking synthesizers emerging from an echo chamber. Earth Trax expresses a darker sound, all with biting stabs, deep sub and frenzied pads on A2. As we flip to B1 (when heís teaming up with Newborn Jr. again) the release develops an ambient house feel (as featured on a couple of previous records) with a slightly more experimental approach.

                                  STAFF COMMENTS

                                  Sil says: Clean and spacey sounds emerging from the new breed of Polish techno producers - the Basic Channel, Chain Reaction, Maurizio and Moritz Von Oswald inspiration is difficult to hide but that's never a bad thing when done this well!

                                  Earth, Wind & Fire

                                  The Best Of Vol. 1 - Picture Disc Edition

                                    Some of the era's most needed, heeded messages ran deep and sweet atop Verdine White's bass grooves (front and centre on "Getaway"), brother and leader Maurice's drum and percussion tracks honed over years with Chess Records' rhythm section Louis Satterfield's horn section scrambling through jazz-rock mazes every track, and Phillip Bailey's high, clear falsetto on "After The Love Has Gone," the prom dance standard "Reasons," the soaring chorus of "September," and the elegant "Fantasy".

                                    FORMAT INFORMATION

                                    Coloured LP Info: *ONE COPY FOUND!*

                                    Earthboogie

                                    Creepy Steve / Human Call - Inc. Joel Harrison Remix

                                    Since debuting on the label in May 2017, East London duo Earthboogie has been part of the extended Leng family. In that time, Izaak Gray and Nicola Robinson have delivered a swathe of superb singles and a fine debut album, 2018’s critically acclaimed "Human Call". Here they present their sole single of 2019, a two-track fusion of intergalactic, terrestrial and tribal elements reflective of their by-now trademark style.

                                    Fittingly, lead cut "Creepy Steve" - a previously unheard workout recorded during the sessions for "Human Call" - contains many of the musical ingredients that made Earthboogie such an enticing proposition. It boasts a raw, fuzzy and driving analogue bassline, densely layered tribal percussion, dub disco-influenced guitars, woozy electronics and sporadic blasts of African style chanting. As if that wasn’t enough to get the blood pumping, Gray and Robinson have also thrown in some extended, rock style guitar solos and more cowbells, bongos and timbales than you can shake a stick at.

                                    It comes accompanied by a previously unheard remix of “Human Call”, the title track from their superb debut album, by friend and fellow musical fusionist Joel Harrison. His version is warm, woozy, driving and percussive, brilliantly re-imagining Earthboogie’s original version as a supersonic slab of peak-time ready deep house. The band’s original chanted vocals, guitars and melodies slowly rise above bustling, all-action drums, weighty bass, alien-sounding electronic flourishes, poignant trumpet parts and seriously dreamy sustained chords. 


                                    STAFF COMMENTS

                                    Sil says: Percussive rich and with plenty of cosmic warmth and... boogie! Or is it disco? A belter nonetheless.

                                    Earthen Sea

                                    Grass And Trees

                                      Jacob Long’s reductionist rhythmic ambient vessel, Earthen Sea, ebbs towards a more purely elemental state on his second excursion for Kranky, Grass and Trees.

                                      He describes the creative process as one of “simplifying things as much as possible,” designing uncluttered spaces traced in nothing but breath, field recordings, and “sounds that could be played by hand but weren’t.”
                                      The results feel decentralized but dynamic, low-lit evocations of ambiguous nocturnal environments – dub techno disassembled into stray pulses and spare parts. It’s a music both interior and infinite, languorous yet transformative, made in the outer boroughs of a metropolis but existing in its own liminal wilderness.

                                      Long’s vision is a grounding one, rooted in the physical body but attuned to larger currents: “In response to living in a fairly hectic city, and at a very hectic time for the world at large, creating something more drawn back and restrained felt appropriate.


                                      Earth

                                      Full Upon Her Burning Lips

                                        Commemorating thirty trips around the sun as one of metal’s most monolithic bands, Earth release their ninth studio album, Full Upon Her Burning Lips. A purge of the embellishment and panache from previous releases, Full Upon Her Burning Lips intimates Earth’s commitment to the minimalism of their primordial days.

                                        Deconstructing the tried-and-true dynamic consisting of Dylan Carlson on guitar and bass and Adrienne Davies on drums and percussion, Full Upon Her Burning Lips taps into the Platonic ideal of Earth—an incarnation of the long running band bolstered by the authority of purpose, where every note and every strike on the drum kit carries the weight of the world. In addition to scaling back the flourishes of their hulking, drone-driven opuses, Full Upon Her Burning Lips was composed sans narrative, relying instead on their collective subconscious to hone in on the overarching muse as the songs developed.

                                        The record was engineered, mixed, and mastered by long time associate Mell Dettmer at Studio Soli. Showcasing Carlson’s sepia-toned Bakersfield Sound guitars and Davies’ death knell drums, Full Upon Her Burning Lips mines for the expressive, nuanced, and tonally rich components of Earth’s arsenal of sound. And indeed, anyone that’s followed Earth on their journey will bask in the unadulterated hums, throbs, and reverberations conjured by Carlson and Davies.

                                        “I feel like this is the fullest expression and purest distillation of what Earth does since I re-started the band,” Carlson says in reflection of Full Upon Her Burning Lips. And indeed, anyone that’s followed Earth on their journey will bask in the unadulterated hums, throbs, and reverberations conjured by Carlson and Davies.

                                        Earthless

                                        From The West

                                          On the eve of the release of Black Heaven, their debut for Nuclear Blast Records, Earthless turned in this incredible live performance in San Francisco on March 1st, 2018, captured released on vinyl by Silver Current Records. Since their inception seventeen years ago, this band has become an icon of 21st century heavy music and a cult unto themselves.

                                          On From The West the band’s signature high-volume drive and unbridled horsepower create an almost mantra-like repetition as a framework for infinite improvisation. That, and beer-can crushing, fist-pumping riffs and solos delivered by an unstoppable rhythm section. This album is a complete, hypnotic, psychedelic experience in a way that remains totally unique to the band’s virtuosic expression. A live album that captures the band at peak powers and a quintessential fan piece from one of the best live rock bands in the world. Album tracks includes looser, rawer versions of Black Heaven favorites, a nearly twenty minute version of their instrumental titan “Uluru Rock,” and a blazing cover of Led Zeppelin’s “Communication Breakdown.” The album jacket is also a meticulous reproduction of the band’s favorite TMOQ (Trademark Of Quality) Zeppelin bootleg.

                                          East River Pipe

                                          The Gasoline Age (Reissue)

                                            Next in the Merge25 reissue series is East River Pipe’s 1999 classic The Gasoline Age.

                                            East River Pipe (AKA F.M. Cornog) signed to a major label that folded before he released a note. But he kept his advance money and moved out of his tiny apartment in Queens and bought a house in New Jersey and, apparently, a car. Whereas previous East River Pipe albums focus on a solitary man who only breaks his loner streak for the love of his good woman, The Gasoline Age takes to the highway in a “Shiny, Shiny Pimpmobile.” Sometimes it’s a “Cybercar” for a “Party Drive.” He hits the town with “Atlantic City (Gonna Make a Million Tonight).” Imagines where his car has been (“14th Street Boys Stolen Car Club”) and takes it onto the New Jersey highways where he drops “Tenafly,” “Hackensack” and Routes 26 and 22 like an experienced pro. The music is still recorded on his home recording unit while his ambitions remain Phil Spector high and deep. The keyboards bleed into the jangly guitars and the over-compressed reverbed vocals. For the first time, Cornog sounds excited and relieved, alive and glowing.

                                            FORMAT INFORMATION

                                            LP Info: 180 gram vinyl. First time available on vinyl. LP includes coupon for full album download plus 10 previously unreleased bonus tracks also via the download coupon.

                                            Easter / Bromide

                                            Doubt Rings / I'll Never Learn

                                              One friend. Two bands. And so it was that Manchester's 'Easter' and London's 'Bromide' met in their mutual pal Dave Armes's address book (he of Last Harbour, LCR Records and A-Sun Amissa sidekick repute). Soon after Easter were on their way down t'smoke to play at Bromide's place, namely the Birds Nest in Deptford. And verily did they smash it! So much so that Bromide singer Simon immediately thought about putting something out on his Scratchy Records label.. and why not keep the threads twisting and make it a joint release! Especially as both bands share a love of alt. sounds from across the pond back in dem 90s days. Easter feasting on Buffalo Tom's heavier riffs, Yo La Tengo and San Francisco's 'Swell', while Bromide reminded Easter's mainman Tom of 'Nada Surf and Big Star and that New Zealand power pop stuff..' So the split-single was born.. Easter taking the A with 'Doubt Rings', a propulsive guitar-lashed gallop thru the relationship forest with Bromide on the AA offering 'I'll Never Learn' from last year's 'I Woke Up' album on Scratchy, an up/downbeat reflective tale that dries solid on the choruses when the fuzz kicks in. Easter - 'A welcome throwback to the wry, self-lacerating alt.rock of the early 90s'Uncut Bromide -‘if you like Dinosaur Jr and The Replacements, you’ll love this’.


                                              Eastlink

                                              Angel Gun

                                              Eastlink is a section of freeway in the suburbs of Melbourne, Australia. Eastlink is also a band from Melbourne that delivers a blown-out, three-guitar assault, equal parts riff-fueled rock and noise-fucked psych. If it matters (and you know it does!), Eastlink features members of such notable Australian flag-bearers as Total Control, UV Race, Repairs, Lakes, Straightjacket Nation, Interzone, Teargas, etc. Really, they are just a f’n great band. Watch for their debut album in 2014 on In The Red!

                                              Founded in Manchester in 2013 by members: Theo Tobias, Ronan Clowes, Alex Howes and Thomas Short, Easy Kill refer to their music as Doom-Pop - a sort of melancholy made catchy.

                                              Following the success of lead single 'Samson' and follow-up ‘Not Even Lovers’ - which received airplay on 6 Music and BBC Radio 1 (the former was selected by Huw Stevens as his 'Tip of the Week’) - the Manchester quartet have released their stunning EP ‘Sermons’. Released digitally and on 12” vinyl on 26th February the four track collection has been described by DIY as “timeless storytelling” and by Goldflakepaint as “a rich, swooning thump of pop music”, drawing comparisons to The National, Wild Beasts and Future Islands along the way… 

                                              Easy Life

                                              Junk Food

                                                7 track mini album from hotly tipped Leicester 5 piece Easy Life. They take elements of hip-hop, funk, soul, jazz and r&b and shake 'em up into an infectious blend of modern essential pop, spearheaded by their talismanic singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Murray Matravers.




                                                FORMAT INFORMATION

                                                Coloured LP Info: Red ketchup coloured vinyl.

                                                Easy Star All-Stars

                                                Dub Side Of The Moon

                                                Approaching a dub reggae version of Pink Floyd's "Dark Side Of THe Moon" might strike fear in the hearts of prog and reggae fans alike. If that's the case then you're in for a pleasant suprise as the Easy Star All-Stars "Dub Side Of The Moon" works. Not only does it compliment the Floyd, it's a rich and fascinating re-working that innovates as well as entertains, AND it still matches up perfectly with 'Wizard Of Oz'...!

                                                Following the quick fire sell out and widespread acclaim of the bands‘ second LP “Heavy Electrics“ in 2012, ELBL release their third full length via The GPS and Rocket Girl, just in time for Summer.

                                                Building on the bands’ trademark multi layered motorik groove, “Modular Living” adds a more organic, electronic approach in places. Where once, listening to Eat Lights might have focused perhaps on the adored kraut groove of Neu! / La Dusseldorf etc, “Modular Living“ seems to add the key ingredients of slow burning Popol Vuh and Cluster-esque pieces into the mix. Eternally building and evolving resulting in a far better balanced listen than the previous full lengths, arguably.

                                                The momentum attained with the last LP should build nicely here- rave reviews were pretty common spread via the likes of Stuart Maconie’s “Freak Zone”, Andrew Weatherall’s 6music show and Gideon Coe. Even a year on, tracks from “Heavy Electrics” are aired pretty regularly so the new full length comes at the perfect time for longterm devotees and the newcomer alike. Live shows are currently incredible- a real intense, dual drummer stage set up with these new tunes sounding just fabulous. The band play a number of shows in support of the album, including a slot at the always amazing Liverpool Festival of Psychedelia in September.

                                                Eat Skull return with a follow-up of sorts to last year's Siltbreeze released debut, "Sick To Death". Three new tracks, "Jerusalem Mall" is a newer Christmas time jingle for these hopeful times. Backed with two "Sick To Death" outtakes unavailable on vinyl till now. Limited edition pressing.

                                                STAFF COMMENTS

                                                Darryl says: An essential slab of distorted noise scuzz from this Portland, Oregan four piece.

                                                Christopher Eatough writes and performs songs. His heartbreaking perspective on life has led people compare him to Ryan Adams, Rufus Wainwright, Neil Young and Sufjan Stevens. Over the past two years Christopher has played alongside Neal Casal, Lisa Mitchell, William Fitzsimmons, Rox, Starsailor and Mark Morriss, along with many others whilst attempting to recreate the tender atmosphere of his live performances on record. "A Creak in the Cold", his debut album, is the result of these efforts.

                                                In a world of music lined with acoustic troubadours from basement to bar and venue to vault, it takes something truly inspirational to stand out from the crowds. "A Creak in the Cold" is proof of Christopher Eatough’s startling talent and vindication of a voice that has been stirring up so many words of acclaim around the North West for the past year. This is a record that will speak to you and sooth you. This is a record that will soften the edges. This is a record for anyone who has a heart, no matter if it is barely beating through the aching weight upon your chest.

                                                “London electronica trio Eaux sound like Fuck Buttons on a comedown: all glacially moving synths and snowdrift vocals.” Q – '5 Songs You Must Hear'

                                                When Ben Crook - one third of spectral electronic trio Eaux - describes his group's songs as "never finished, just abandoned" he's describing a creative process that burrows its way down and down until each track has to be wrenched away from their originator's hands, given the sheer amount of avenues that the three-piece manage to open up during conception. However Eaux's debut LP Plastics, out on ATP Recordings, also has the feel of abandonment to it, in the sense that to listen to it is to come across some long-lost gem, an unknown discovery amidst a box of records, an electronic album where influences past and present cancel each other out in stasis to create an album that exists in a timeless era.

                                                Formed in London in early 2012, Crook, alongside Sian Ahern and Stephen Warrington, centre their foreboding towers of shadowed sound around the hypnotic release and repetition of techno; however, although Plastics does display minimalist tendencies, the group never allow their rhythmic patterns to become static, a heavily analogue approach to everything they do putting a very human face to this machine-made music.

                                                Much of Plastics has evolved from live jams, the group holing themselves up in a personal rehearsal and studio space so that ideas form and bounce off each other. Having all come from more orthodox band set-ups, they found a freedom in experimenting with comparatively unfamiliar electronic technology, their limited knowledge of their tools meaning they could approach them with very little baggage. Ahern's vocal is another key element to the group's sound, offering a softer-edged, higher range than much of the simmering murmurs and oscillations rising and falling below her. Though aerial, sweeping through the likes of the Broadcast-esque ‘Movers and Shakers' and flowering above the pulsating after-dark drone disco of ‘Peace Makes Plenty', her voice largely works as another layer amidst what's a darkened but rich tapestry, an ethos of equality driving the group, all roles on a level with each other.

                                                So it is that Eaux's music feels like it's trying to reach out from that clutter and acceleration of technology, tracks like ‘Evoke' pushing hard to find space away from their synthetic frequencies. Plastics, like its name suggests, is a collection of moulded, shaped forms; the result of collective electrical process. It's an album that takes in the bigger picture, with each component unable to do without any of the others.

                                                Delfonic stumbled upon the tracks that make up this release during a none-descript warehouse party around 2013. After founding out they were actually made in 2008, Oye Black hunted down the artist, Martin Georgi and signed two tracks off the original EP, and backed them up with a DJ friendly edit by Delfonic.

                                                The first track is a mid tempo, low-NRG MPC house jam - well constructed drums, an eyes down pad pattern and a catchy female vocal hook. It could easily be a lost Sound Signature jam, or, finds new alliances with Bastien Carrara and Eddie Danielle. The second unnamed track keeps the vibe flowing as organs, strings and picked guitar lines are gleefully chopped up and rearranged across the MPC's 16 pads. 


                                                Ebony & Ivory

                                                Blow Dem Away / Fraud

                                                Two nice young men dropped into the shop over the weekend with their UK garage (or whatever we're calling it these days!) white label, which I present to you here. Both sides feature rough digital beats with fat bassline punches, topped off by strong MCing by Ivory. Not to be confused with Paul McCartney and Stevie Wonder!

                                                Cross-Pennine musical experimentalists The Eccentronic Research Council (Sheffield electronic musicians Dean Hohner - I Monster, and Adrian Flannagan - Kings Have Long Arms, and actress Maxine Peake) return with a fabulous fourth album, ‘Johnny Rocket, Narcissist & Music Machine… I’m Your Biggest Fan’, released on Fat White Family's Without Consent imprint. Written from the persuasive point of view of an obsessional fan of a (fictional?) local band - The Moonlandingz, who gig around the (fictional?) South Yorkshire district of Valhalla Dale. Musically we're treated to more analogue synth invention and twisted exotica, while Maxine Peake's increasingly dark, yet hilarious dialogue (written by Flannagan) is as spot on as previous ERC albums.

                                                The album sees The Eccentronic Research Council team up with Lias Saoudi and Saul Adamczewski of South London’s The Fat White Family, who ably play the role of The Moonlandingz.


                                                STAFF COMMENTS

                                                Barry says: It sounds a bit Radio 4, but this album is a story.. It is a rousing tale (no spoilers) of a woman and her struggles with her passion for music, and her love of a band. Through this we get to hear some back-story, and reasons behind her eccentricities. Sounds weird, right? Now add to that the fact that said woman is inspiringly voiced by Maxine Peake, and the fictional (but now real) band is two members of the Fat White Family, and you have an altogether more promising concept. It delivers wholeheartedly. Fantastically northern voice narrates her life atop a brilliantly written and performed (not to mention historically accurate) fuzzy indie backdrop. When listening as a whole, this is the full package, rousing, moving, rawkous and witty. Truly an experience.

                                                FORMAT INFORMATION

                                                2xLtd LP Info: Includes CD of the album and a limited edition Moonlandingz (Fat White Family) 12" EP. Limited to 1000 copies only.

                                                The collaborative reactions of Adrian Flannagan (Kings Have Long Arms), actress Maxine Peake (Shameless / Silk) and Dean Hohner (I Monster) - under the umbrella moniker The Eccentronic Research Council - take their collective experiences in theatre, music technology, television, pop cultural archiving and radio to reimagine a time and place, barren of authority and religious faith, where the unified working classes and alternative thinkers are mocked and persecuted at the hands of a flawed and paranoid government and monarchy.

                                                As The Eccentronic Research Council recognise, “Socially and politically things haven’t changed so much in 400 years, people are poor again and have to do bad things too eat, individuals who don't fit in are still beaten down with bats, and there are hypothetical witch hunts all around us.”
                                                Stylistically, The ERC opt for a vast array of mechanical music machines and synthesised effects to create this conceptual non-populist pop using analogue and acoustic equipment alongside tape manipulation, vocalisations and spoken word, remaining faithful to a pre-digital and unpredictable era taking cues from Mort Garson, Suzanne Ciani, Sorel Hayes, Joe Meek, Daphne Oram, JP Massiera and Delia Derbyshire amongst others.

                                                Conceived with the same ambitions and goals as an electronic Smithsonian Folkways record, ‘1612 Underture’ is a concept album that aims to reevaluate and positively recontextualise an important historical and cultural feminine incident, but also hopes to encourage listeners to rethink how they process modern folk and popular music 400 years after the events in the eye of this project’s unique subject matter.

                                                Released to coincide with the 400th anniversary of the Pendle Witch Trials, which should bring with it plenty of fanfare and live events. Check out this YouTube video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Dxh6LrwET0U


                                                STAFF COMMENTS

                                                Philippa says: The collaborative reactions of Adrian Flannagan (Kings Have Long Arms), actress Maxine Peake (Shameless / Silk) and Dean Hohner (I Monster) - under the umbrella moniker The Eccentronic Research Council

                                                Adolfo Echeverria Y Su Orquesta

                                                Sabroso Bacalao

                                                First ever reissue of "Sabroso bacalao" by Adolfo Echeverria y su Orquesta, released on Colombia's Discos Fuentes in 1977. In addition to hot, driving hardcore salsa tunes, the LP includes some cumbia and porro plus cuts in the Afro-Cuban oriza rhythm and the cumbela style, which is a variant on the bomba, an Afro-Puerto Rican folkloric drum-based genre. The album yielded the hit 'Fantasia marina', but in recent years 'Noches de cumbia' and the title track have become tropical DJ dance floor standards across the globe, making this record a must-have for collectors, disk jockeys and aficionados of the classic Fuentes sound. Presented in facsimile artwork and pressed on 180g vinyl. Part of Vampisoul's reissue series of classic Fuentes LPs.

                                                Echo & The Bunnymen

                                                It's All Live Now

                                                  One of the most acclaimed British rockers from the 1980’s, this legendary band formed in Liverpool in 1978 and were forefathers of the neo-psychedelic movement. Their line up consisted of vocalist Ian McCulloch, guitarist Will Sergeant, bass player Les Pattinson and drummer Pete de Freitas, eventually replacing the original drum machine.

                                                  The band’s cult status eventually waned with mainstream success in 1983 after they scored a UK top 10 hit with “The Cutter” and attendant album Porcupine which hit #2 in the UK. 1984’s album Ocean Rain is considered a landmark post-punk release, featuring the lead single “Killing Moon.”

                                                  The band split in 1988 but regrouped in 1997, releasing an album in 2014 that was their first UK Top 40 entry since 1999. The band’s popularity never quite made the same impact in the US as it did in Europe so they are ripe for rediscovery for anyone interested in bands such as Suede, Radiohead, Arcade Fire, Blur, Interpol and Oasis.

                                                  This brand new collection of their legendary live material recorded in Sweden in 1985 includes classic Rock-N-Roll covers of legendary tunes by the Doors, Rolling Stones, Velvet Underground, Television and more available on vinyl for the first time. Many of the tracks from Sweden were recorded live for Swedish National Radio at the Karen Club. Also included here is a legendary extended version of “Do It Clean” recorded live in concert at the Royal Albert Hall in 1983.


                                                  FORMAT INFORMATION

                                                  Ltd LP Info: 1-LP, 180g, black vinyl pressed at Record Industry comes in a single sleeve aqueous-gloss, old school tip-on Stoughton sleeve with brand new artwork and hard stock insert.
                                                  Never before seen photos of the band.
                                                  Liner notes by guitarist Will Sergeant.

                                                  Echo & The Bunnymen

                                                  Ocean Rain

                                                  Singer Mac, ever the self-publicist, took the mickey in May '84 declaring "Ocean Rain" to be 'The Greatest Album Of All Time', on all the posters and advertisements on its release. The thing is though; it is! OK, well it's one of them! There was only one song left with the weird, turbulent dynamic (the incredible "Thorn Of Crowns"), the rest was the lushest, most tuneful blend of acoustic guitars pure romanticism, sweeping orchestral arrangements and the sweetest happy / sad songs they ever laid down. Not one duff track, the whole thing flows, and "Killing Moon" is probably their greatest ever moment. This version includes the "Life At Brian's" 7" doublepack (remember them?) from July that year, and never before released live versions of "My Kingdom" and the title track, from their best ever live event, at St George's Hall in Liverpool, in May '84. Something very special is caught on this LP. It's dazzlingly imaginative, big hearted, beautiful pop music.

                                                  STAFF COMMENTS

                                                  Andy says: An absolutely incredible pop record which overflows with mystery, magic, romance and most importantly, massive tunes! This Liverpool band were already adored, but in 1984 nobody could have predicted the huge step up in song-writing and just the sheer overall magnificence on display here. It's that classic pop thing of being heartbreaking but simultaneously life-affirming, in every song and across the whole album. One of the best LP's ever made.

                                                  Echo & The Bunnymen

                                                  The John Peel Sessions 1979-1983

                                                    Echo & The Bunnymen - ‘The John Peel Sessions 1979-1983’ is a collection of all the Radio 1 John Peel sessions that they performed in the formative years of the band, and in celebration of these early recordings, a double black LP and a 1CD of this set will be released.

                                                    Significantly, this collection of 21 tracks are from the very beginning of the bands existence. With little money, the band used them to demo new material. Many of the songs were written due to the fact a Peel session had been booked, not because the show loved the new songs - demonstrating the level of trust, confidence and love they had for the band.According to Echo & The Bunnymen guitarist Will Sergeant, these recordings could quite simply be some of the most significant in the bands career - “Without John Peel sessions, Echo And The Bunnymen in my opinion, would not exist! It’s that simple. The band got so much support from him and John Walters (Peel’s producer). Recording a Peel session was essential to the development of our songwriting skills while at the same time giving us amazing exposure and self-belief.”


                                                    Echo & The Bunnymen

                                                    The Stars, The Oceans & The Moon

                                                    Bunnymen Classics Transformed & New Songs With Strings & Things Attached.

                                                    ‘I’m not doing this for anyone else. I’m doing it as it’s important to me to make the songs better. I have to do it.’ Ian McCulloch

                                                    This new studio album sees The Bunnymen, still lead by the indominable Ian McCulloch and Will Sergeant, revisit some of their greatest songs to rearrange and transform them with co producer Andy Wright…and strings and things. Also included is two brand new tracks to accompany the classics.

                                                    Echo & the Bunnymen's dark, swirling fusion of post-punk and The Doors/The Velvets-inspired pop psychedelia has brought the group twenty top 20 hits and nine top 20 albums in the UK so far in their 40 year career. The band have come a long way from the group's infamous first concert as a three-piece with a drum machine in 1979 at the legendary Erics club in Liverpool, The Bunnymen still perform sell-out concerts across the world today.

                                                    Their seminal albums 'Crocodiles', 'Heaven Up Here', 'Porcupine' and 'Ocean Rain' have been a major influence for acts such as Coldplay, The Killers and The Flaming Lips whilst later albums 'Evergreen' and 'What Are You Going To Do With Your Life?' and 'Siberia & Meteorites' demonstrate what an amazing body of work the band have.

                                                    The Bunnymen are still revered by those in the best of popular culture. In the past year alone, the highly acclaimed and culturally phenomenal Netflix series 'Stranger Things' has used the song 'Nocturnal Me' whilst the equally comparable '13 Reasons Why' has used 'The Killing Moon', a song also used on another Netflix show, 'Dead of Summer'. 

                                                    Echo And The Bunnymen

                                                    Crystal Days 1979-1999

                                                    A wealth of classic tracks on this superb 4CD set from one of the greatest Indie bands of the late 70's and 1980's. Echo and the Bunnymen's vision and originality shine through on tracks like "Rescue", "Over the Wall" and "A Promise". The set includes 17 rare B-sides and live tracks (many appearing on CD for the first time), an absorbing colour booklet and remastered original recordings. The sort of retrospective a band of this quality deserves.

                                                    Echo & The Bunnymen

                                                    Crocodiles

                                                    Heralded upon its release (in July 1980) as the first great album of the new decade, the crucial thing about "Crocodiles" was that whilst its authors were of the Punk Generation, the record itself was a clear cut away from Punk. Grandiose, doomy, dead catchy but edgy too, the sound was a bit psychedelic with nods to Syd's Floyd, the VU's minimalism, The Doors otherworldly poeticness and dynamism and a clear fondness for the trashier sounds found on Nuggets and Pebbles. But how they got so good so fast is still astonishing (singer Mac was only 20!) This reissue collects 1981's "Shine Scotland Live EP" and some smart early versions for the first time onto one disc. And OK, I suppose you better add 'slightly Gothy' to that list of sounds! And the word 'incandescent'!

                                                    Echo & The Bunnymen

                                                    Echo & The Bunnymen

                                                    Whilst only Mohammed Ali could big himself up more than Ian McCullough, the Bunnymen vocalist could also be disarmingly honest. He said they'd got straight A's at A level with "Ocean Rain", tried to graduate with this record and failed. They'd gone for a mainstream, clean rock production with all their special quirks shorn off and a lot of it misses the mark. However "The Game", "Lips Like Sugar" and "Bedbugs And Ballyhoo" are right up there with their very best. As is "Bring On The Dancing Horses" included here in its gloriously indulgent 12" extended-version-majesty.

                                                    Echo & The Bunnymen

                                                    Heaven Up Here

                                                    When this was released in June '81, the Bunnymen were the cult band in the UK. And to many of those fans this LP represents their finest hour. They loved the weirdness, because to my ears this is easily the Bunnymen's least poppy album: dark, mysterious and requiring repeated listens before it unfurls itself. From another planet, really, properly moody and complex, but out of the labyrinthine confusion of angular guitars and weirdly melodic bass, rose the truly epic "Over The Wall". An absolute classic and influence on The Roses own epic "I Wanna Be Adored". There's five bonus tracks here, including a great live version of the album's other highlight "All My Colours".

                                                    'Legendary Liverpool band Echo & the Bunnymen release their 12th studio album and first since 2009, Meteorites. Produced by Youth (Killing Joke, The Verve), the album contains ten hand-picked new songs written by founder Ian McCulloch and performed by Bunnymen stalwarts Mc Culloch and Will Sergeant along with Gordy Goudie (guitar) and Stephen Brannan (bass).

                                                    It’s an intimate song cycle written by Ian McCulloch performed by the band with a renewed sense of purpose showcasing all of their unmistakable musical hallmarks while taking them to a new level. Says McCulloch: “’Meteorites’, the new Bunnymen album…at long last we’ve made the worthy successor to ‘Crocodiles,’ ‘Heaven Up Here,’ ‘Porcupine’ and ‘Ocean Rain.’ ‘Meteorites’ is what Echo and the Bunnymen mean and are meant to be—up there in heaven--untouchable, celestial, beautiful and real. It has changed my life”

                                                    STAFF COMMENTS

                                                    Andy says: Massive sounding return to form. Deep, doomy and beautiful. Return of The Mac.

                                                    Echo & The Bunnymen

                                                    Porcupine

                                                    'Porcupine' is Echo & The Bunnymen’s most profound & personal album from their early period. Weathering band turmoil, rejections from their record company & spans of song writing drought, the group emerged with a passionate & compelling set of songs described by vocalist Ian McCulloch as “coming to terms with the opposites in me.” Following their fourth Peel session in early 1982, the band chose Ian Broudie, leader of The Lightning Seeds and co-producer of Echo’s 1980 album Crocodiles, to produce Porcupine. 

                                                    While the album includes both “The Back of Love” & “The Cutter” (two of their most upbeat & successful singles), most of the material was fairly introverted & autobiographical. Unfortunately suffering negative reviews upon release (including a misguided hate-piece in the NME), Porcupine has since become a gold standard for both the band & British underground rock from the ’80s. It’s also simultaneously their most retro album & their most forward looking. The production is full of guitar effects that must have set the mind of Kevin Shields onto the path to My Bloody Valentine’s own masterpiece, Loveless. In addition to the “The Cutter” & “The Back of Love”, Porcupine includes songs such as “My White Devil,” “Heads Will Roll,” & “Porcupine” that transcend & enlighten to this day. It’s an essential album from one of the most influential bands of the post-punk movement.

                                                    STAFF COMMENTS

                                                    Andy says: Heavy, powerful, totally original, sometimes melodic sometimes fractured post-punk rock. An amazing band.

                                                    Echo & The Bunnymen return with their 10th studio album. As bashful as ever Ian McCulloch affirms 'It's our best album since "What Are You Gonna Do With Your Life?" No actually, I'm gonna say it's the best album since "Ocean Rain". "The Idolness Of Gods" is possibly the greatest song I've ever written'.

                                                    Echo Collective

                                                    Echo Collective Plays Amnesiac

                                                      Over the past few years orchestral instrumental music from outside the classical establishment has become huge, and Neil Leiter and Margaret Hermant of the Belgian Echo Collective have witnessed the evolution and extraordinary rise of this movement right up close. They've worked with some of the most important players, including Stars Of The Lid, Dustin O’Halloran and Adam Wiltze’s A Winged Victory For The Sullen and O’Halloran’s solo projects, as well as Jóhann Jóhannsson. And though the Echo Collective members themselves very much do come from within the classical music establishment, they don't care which side of the fence they are seen to be on. It was this which grabbed the attention of German music hub !K7's new sub-label 7K! - who have signed them for a two album deal: first to release the Amnesiac reinterpretation, then for a record of Echo Collective's own compositions.

                                                      Echo Ladies

                                                      Echo Ladies

                                                        Their mixture of guitars, synths and drum machines is more like a Venn diagram of your favourite bands and records. At various points you can hear The Cure’s ‘Disintegration’, The Jesus And Mary Chain’s ‘Automatic’, New Order and A Place To Bury Strangers’ total sonic annihilation, but crossed with the soaring indie-pop melodies of The Radio Dept, Alvvays, Camera Obscura and even a little bit of Saint Etienne. 

                                                        FORMAT INFORMATION

                                                        10" Info: Gold vinyl version


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