Tess Roby is an artist with a vision. The Montreal-based photographer and musician, an eight-year veteran of the Canadian Children’s Opera Company, seems utterly original, moving with a restless energy toward the sublime. Her sound betrays an intrepid longing to discover and explore, to reject convention and transcend cliché: Roby is a born traveller, absorbing everything she hears and making it new. Ethereal and crystalline, bathed sumptuously in synths, her music is heady, dreamy, singular — a transmission from parts unknown. The classical training and aesthetic omnivorousness combine like worlds colliding.
Roby’s debut album Beacon was written in 2015, following the death of her father. She collaborated with her brother Eliot to create what they describe as a kind of spiritual homage — both to her father and to the Beacon, where the family travelled often. Roby recorded these songs with the drum machines and synthesizers she found in her father’s recording studio, and galvanized by his spirit she imbued the music with love, movement, whispers, memories, and pain. “All the while the Beacon remained effervescent in my mind,” Roby remembers. “Visions of it ablaze on the hilltop, standing motionless while I searched for understanding.”
STAFF COMMENTSBarry says: Tender, Balearic chimes and languid strummed guitar meet with Roby's enchanting voice and tentative arpeggiated synths, Beacon is a brilliantly written and perfectly measured triumph.
STAFF COMMENTSPatrick says: One of the finest moments in the Italians Do It Better gets a welcome revisit here, as the Carpenter styled "Tick Of The Clock" finally gets its moment in the spotlight. Alongside an extended version which flips the arrangement for added drama, we have the condensed intensity of the "Drive" version alongside the Daft Punk punch of Visione's chugging re-edit.
FORMAT INFORMATIONLtd 12" Info: 180g vinyl pressed on ultra-clear dipped in icy blue vinyl.
The 19 movements of Digital Rain are three dimensional beds of analogue warmth encompassed in raw electronic moisture. The result is an expansive pallet of soft color amid canyons of jagged oscillations. According to Jewel, "Digital Rain is a mirror image of itself designed to play as a singular liquid movement."
"After living a few years in a desert climate, I realized I was nostalgic for the constant presence of precipitation from every city I once called home. The sound of hail ricocheting off my roof in Houston...The floods crashing in from the Gulf of Mexico that would destroy my mother's house three times...The constant kiss of drizzle on the streets of Portland, and the morning rain against the windshield of Trimet city bus number 15 that I would ride home after recording all night...The snow buried row houses of Montreal where my daughter was born, and the rhythmic feel of ice cracking under my boots for six months straight."
"The desert is constant, and I love this repetitious ritual of Los Angeles so much. As moisture and humid weather seem more and more like a dream I once had or a fading memory of the places I fell in love with...I wanted to make a record without drums, without lyrics, vague in form. Each track morphing and eclipsing the next like the ever-changing movement of clouds obscuring the moon."
STAFF COMMENTSBarry says: It's pretty rare that Johnny Jewel / Chromatics / Italians Do It Better as a whole put anything bad out. This is no exception. Brimming with the sort of tender arpeggio's and kosmische atmospherics that make my eyes go all dewy, this is absolutely stunning.
FORMAT INFORMATIONColoured LP Info: LP pressed on Pink Champagne coloured vinyl – limited to 2000 units world wide.
STAFF COMMENTSPatrick says: Moonlit, melancholic majesty from the early days of Glass Candy. Before "B/E/A/T/B/O/X/" and their superb Belle Epoque cover on "After Dark", Johnny Jewel and Ida No were holed up in Portland, perfecting their VHS-hazed brand of nocturnal Italo pop with this set of floor oriented gems.
FORMAT INFORMATIONColoured LP Info: Lavender coloured vinyl.
Archival Reissue Originally Recorded 2004-2006 In Portland. Out Of Print For Over A Decade
Ltd LP Info: Pink coloured vinyl.
Archival Reissue Originally Recorded 2004-2006 In Portland. Out Of Print For Over A Decade
STAFF COMMENTSPatrick says: Italians Do It Better go back to their roots with this mega reissue of the impossibly rare "Nite" LP from back in 2006. A perfect example of the early sound of IDIB, "Nite" perfectly captures the world of neon-tinged diners and 80s movies with a super cool combination of Italo synths, dark disco and post punk guitars. Warriors...come out to play.
FORMAT INFORMATIONLtd LP Info: Limited edition red vinyl.
"Dark Day" first appeared on the unexpected breakout label sampler, "After Dark". On this original version of "Hands In The Dark" 808 bass pummel your speakers, and the guitars remember Martin Hannett's colouring of Joy Division. Meanwhile, synthesizers crash into the beat as Ruth hums a melody at the top of the lighthouse. Side one closes with the slow motion "I'm On Fire". A cover of the Bruce Springsteen classic.
Next, the record takes a moment to breathe with the abstract instrumental, "Tears Of Pain". Revisiting the spacial elements of Morricone & Krzysztof Komeda overlooking a city of bridges. The vocoder driven "Lady" sounds like a Japanese sequencer on its death bed struggling to arpeggiate its last electronic breath. Then the band gives a nod to one of the greatest bands to ever come out of Portland, Dead Moon. Their cover of "Dagger Moon" hovers in a thick synthetic waltz from 2005 that predates all drag. The record closes with the unreleased instrumental version of "In The City". Meant to appear on the original 12", but got destroyed at the pressing plant in a warehouse fire. Chromatics is the blood and guts of American imagery, with a taste for European noir. Despair... Romance... Hope... Beauty... Pain. All in under 103 beats per melody.
Full color artwork with the classic drawing of Ruth glaring into an uncertain future with a single tear. Comes with a full color insert with lyrics on one side, & a drawing of dueling Peggy Moffitts on the other. Peggy Moffit was the 1960's muse for the visionary fashion designer, Rudi Gernreich. Vinyl version includes a free digital download code with a bonus track titled, "The Long Road Home". Due to Chromatics' disregaurd for music industry laws, and a blatant Francoise Hardy vocal sample, this track cannot be sold. So IDIB decided to give it to us for free. This record has it all.
FORMAT INFORMATIONColoured LP Info: Bubblegum pink vinyl repress.
20 Traxxx...79 Minutes...11 Artists...9 Cities
Includes tracks from Chromatics, Nite Jewel, Glass Candy, Johnny Jewel alongside new label signings such as Heaven
This Summer Is Gonna Be Sick...
Solely based on song titles, you’d say "Missing Pages", "Strobe Lights", "Slow Dreams", "Motel", "Between Worlds", and "The Flame" were written for Twin Peaks, and except for maybe "Strobe Lights", it’s a safe assumption. The jazzy vibraphones on "The Crimson Kiss", another title that could easily be a reference, and "Motel", an instrumental in collaboration with another Johnny Jewel project called Glass Candy - made them instant adds to the Audrey Horne-inspired Isn’t It Too Dreamy playlist.
FORMAT INFORMATIONColoured LP Info: LP repress on blue mist vinyl.
CD Info: Limited Edition Of 2000 CD. Packaged in Wallet Slipcase
The record opens at the end of a long night with our heroine making a phone call to her lover. In the background through the muffled walls of a sweaty nightclub you can hear music playing. She drives to the coast to clear her head, with "Night Drive" on the car stereo. As the hi-hat attacks your speakers, her hair blows in the breeze. This is the opening of the record that continues to define Chromatics' unique sound. The music is drenched in reverb echoeing the death of hope and the price of nostalgia. The most powerful example of this is Chromatics daring take on the Kate Bush classic, "Running Up That Hill," a favorite amongst fans and critics alike. With ethereal songs like "Tomorrow Is So Far Away", "Tick Of The Clock", & "Let's Make This A Moment To Remember", they give the listener the space to breathe. We get a glimpse of their chequered past with the post punk sheen of Joy Division on "Healer".
The lost side of the album is dark and abstract. Opening with the almost funerial "Shining Violence". Where detuned analog synths collide and struggle to hang onto a fading melody. Followed by the sleeper hit, "Circled Sun", and the Vangelis-inspired reflection of life's duality in "The Gemini". "Night Drive" closes with an arpeggiated musical refrain from the beginning of side one. "Acelerator" reinterprates elements of the chord progression from "Night Drive" while leaning heavily on the gear shift. As painted lines in the road begin to strobe, Chromatics propels full speed ahead into an uncertain future.
FORMAT INFORMATIONColoured LP Info: Pink champagne coloured vinyl.
19 NEW ITEMS
206 NEW ITEMS
MorrisseyAll The Young People Must Fall In Love (Bob Clearmountain Mix) / Rose Garden (Live At The Grand Ole Opry, Nashville)
Various ArtistsA Disco Fantasy - Inc. Sylvester, Louie Vega, Amp Fiddler, Sweet Tooth T & Greg Wilson
Various ArtistsSpider-Jazz - KPM Cues Used In The Amazing Animated Series - That We Are Not Allowed To Mention For Legal Reasons
Mon 21st - 3:23
Mon 21st - 2:41
Sun 20th - 11:47