The revamped store was kicked off with some leftover tour merchandise from the Cold Roses, Jacksonville City Nights and 29 era. Mostly teeshirts, but there was a neon rose watch available, too! There was a limited number of the “Oblivion” pink 7″es available as well. Currently on the site is the promised re-press of Orion that is not in the first pressing chrome gatefold sleeve and is probably not clear vinyl. They are promising some new merchandise to come as well!
The other big news is the next release from the archives– a 2 LP release of Ryan Adams and the Cardinals III/IV. The sessions for Easy Tiger in 2007 produced something in the order of 60 tracks recorded over a marathon six months at the infamous Electric Lady Studios in New York City. Easy Tiger was the release that followed the 2005 trifecta of Cold Roses, Jacksonville City Nights and 29.
The reason this release is called III/IV is because it chronologically follows Cold Roses which can be considered I/II. On a Facebook post from 7/15, Ryan said,
“It’s a double and was originally going to be III as in the Cardinals third album. Then we made IV and then lots of things happened and Easy Tiger came out so it got shelved. In the spirit of honoring these albums as they were intended- when looking back on the sessions it was decided in the last few days of them by the band that we were going to release it as a double record. I believe the thinking was ( by the powers that be and by our friends ) that it was too early for another double LP after Cold Roses so we took two songs off of it and put it away for a future day.”
III/IV comes in a number of formats– CD, download and vinyl. You can see what should be the first pressing vinyl and if it is what Ryan initially said about the vinyl those are 180g red and blue transparent LP’s. On a post to the Ryan Adams Archive boards on 6/12 Ryan said that he worked with Andy West on the art. Andy did the Cold Roses artwork. You can see a download card next to the big III/IV poster. Ryan said in the same post that there would be some extras with the “expanded version” and that they might be available with the download card.
Per the Pax Am site, the pre-order information will be coming soon. I’ll update this article as I get more information. Visit the Pax Am Records site and sign up with your e-mail address to be kept up to date, and they are conveniently providing an RSS feed, too!
Here is the tracklist for III/IV with links to content online where it exists.
My Favorite Song
Death And Rats
Kill The Lights
CLICK HERE TO PRE-ORDER THE VINYL VERSION OF III/IV. It will ship on 12/14.
UPDATE: Amazon already has the III/IV 2 CD set on their site and it lists the release date as December 14th and lists the label as TVT/The Orchard. Ryan had mentioned that he was working on a distribution deal for this and other releases. Click on the first Amazon link below to listen to :30 second samples of the tracks. The second link is for the vinyl edition!
Last February I reported about former Iowa City band Death Ships– a show at the Mill and a new EP that he was going to release on iTunes. Titled Maybe Arkansas, it was a 4-track EP of some really great guitar rock. I said that it was, “a flat-out charmer– hook-filled and standing out in my mind as a testament to the great music that comes from the Midwest. These guitar pop songs draw easy and complimentary comparisons to other Midwest greats like The Jayhawks, The Honeydogs and, yes, Wilco. Each of these songs stick in my head with earworm intensity.”
Over half-year later, I still feel this same way about the EP. Since Dan sent me the songs in order for me to review it, I was one of the fortunate few to get to hear it. Well, except for some tracks he gave to some blogs to post and all of the people to which I excitedly played it.
Last week the EP made it to iTunes and you can download it for $3.96 or Amazon for $3.56. On a post frontman Dan Maloney made to his MySpace page, he announced the EP going to iTunes and also said that there will be a limited CD run of the EP. He also announced that they were going to start recording a new album next month.
I’m really happy about the number of great new releases coming out this fall! One release that I’ve been waiting on for I think two years, is the new album from Iowa City’s own Diplomats of Solid Sound! I first heard songs that would make up What Goes Around Comes Around (Record Kicks, October 28) back in August 2008 when they performed at KCCK’s Jazz Under the Stars. In fact, I’m pretty sure I remember the title song from that show. In the shows I’ve seen since then, I’ve heard most of these songs so I feel like I’m already familiar with the album!
The line up for The Diplomats has changed since their 2008 release The Diplomats of Solid Sound Featuring The Diplomettes which was released on Italian Boogaloo-loving label Record Kicks and domestically on Pravda. The Diplomettes was a trio before Abbie Sawyer moved to New Zealand for a year leaving Sarah Cram and Kathy Ruestow to handle the vocal duties as a duo. Original drummer Jim Viner departed at the end of 2008 and is these days behind the skins for Brother Trucker. Viner was replaced by Paul Kresowik.
Like their 2008 release, What Goes Around Comes Around was mixed and edited by Adam Gibbons aka Lack of Afro. Just listening to the track “Give Me One More Chance” which you can hear below on their Soundcloud link (below) I can hear an evolution in their sound. While still firmly planted in classic Ameican soul and R&B– it seems a little more evolved to me. The strings on this track are a fantastic flourish to the song. On the song “What Goes Around Comes Around” they have developed a hot buttered jazz funk that I’d like to hear more of.
What Goes Around Comes Around is due to release on October 11th and will be available from the band, on Amazon and other places like Dusty Groove (likely) in LP and CD and digital download. Prior to the release of the album there will be a 7″ of “Back Off” and “B-O-O-G-A-L-O-O” the center label will look like this:
Record Kicks has made this single available before its release date of 9/27 as a digital download from their site. You can get both sides of the single in 320Kbps mp3′s for £ 0.79 apiece. After PayPal fees and currency conversion, I got both tracks for $2.77 US.
Click Here to visit the Record Kicks page for the “Back Off” b/w “B-O-O-G-A-L-O-O” single to order your mp3′s or to purchase the 7″ single. You can listen to the tracks here, too.
Tracklisting for What Goes Around Comes Around:
2. Back Off
3. Promise Of A Brand New Day
4. Gimme One More Chance
5. No Man
9. What Goes Around Comes Around
10. I Can’t Wait For Your Love (Pistol Allen)
11. Get Out Of The Way (So I Can Get Back To My Life)
In early April, Sherry and I were in the Twin Cities visiting relatives and I managed to get a trip to the Mecca of Records known as the Electric Fetus. While I was flipping through their used vinyl and discount bins an unfamiliar soundtrack was playing overhead. Sherry asked me what it was, and I wasn’t sure but I was as enthralled as she was with the very mellow and groovy music. At one point I found myself singing along with one of the tracks, “You don’t know how to ease my pain, you don’t know…” I asked the guy behind the counter, “Is this a cover of Godley & Creme’s ‘Cry’?” He replied that the thought it was and said, “we’ve been playing this all day and I never noticed that!” He went on to tell me that it was a kind of “Minneapolis Supergroup” called Gayngs(I had to look at the “upcoming releases” board to see how it was spelled). Well, I promptly scoured the file sharing repositories for a leak of Gayngs album titled Relayted and found one. The album quickly entered my regular rotation until it’s release date on May 11th when I purchased the gorgeous 2 LP vinyl in a white gatefold sleeve.
Gayngs is a 23-member (or should I say “participant?”) band/project assembled by Ryan Olson who had an epiphany of sorts waking up one morning to the strains of 10CC’s softrock mega hit “I’m Not In Love.” It was then and there that he decided he wanted to record an album of a similarly-inspired sound. One that would allow them to use all of those cheesy synth patches any self-respecting musician should stay away from. The beginnings of the album started with Ryan andSolid Gold members Adam Hurlburt and Zach Coulter. Over time Ryan added other members to the band drawing from friends and girlfriends until the assembled cast grew to 23. All 23 members don’t play together on any one song on the album. Other notable groups who donated members include Bon Iver (Justin Vernon, Mike Noyce), Megafaun (Brad Cook, Phil Cook, Joe Westerlund), P.O.S., Leisure Birds (Jake Luck, Nick Ryan) and Roma di Luna(Channy Moon Casselle). The album delivered by this large union of musicians is surprisingly singular in vision given all of the participants– which can only be a testament to how Olson managed the proceedings.
A couple of weeks ago we had a family get-together and my relatives from Eau Claire, WI showed up with a present for me– a copy of Relayted on CD and a copy of the May Vita.mn magazine with an article on Gayngs with a focus on the band leader/arranger Ryan Olson. Apparently my aunt is good friends with Ryan’s mom! It turns out that my aunt and uncle went to The Last Prom on Earth show at First Avenue in May and had a great time! Of course, this was a show that Sherry and I had debated on going to, but couldn’t make it and had been kicking ourselves about. Well, thankfully the band will be bringing their 69-beats-per-minute antics to a quick run of dates at the end of September and beginning of October cumulating in a visit to the Austin City Limits Festival on 10/10. While the Last Prom on Earth shows had all of the members of Gayngs, the touring version will only have 10 members– notably without the women but showcasing new arrangements and new material!
Looking through the Sunday fliers in the paper this morning I noticed that Target is going to have an exclusive CD available on Tuesday May 18th in conjunction with the widely-anticipated reissue of the Rolling Stones landmark 1972 album Exile on Main Street. In true fan-exploitative fashion there will be many versions of this release to choose from. Since I was looking into this, I thought I’d help break this down for the casual shopper.
Exile on Main Street in the new century is largely regarded as influential in popular music as Sgt. Pepper’s or Pet Sounds. I think that the Rock/Country/Soul/Blues fusion on Exile singlehandedly created what would be known as “Americana” or “Alt.Country. According to Wikipedia, Exile quickly hit #1 on the UK Top 50 and the US Billboard charts, and charted into the Top 10 in the Hot 100 with “Tumbling Dice” and tracks like “Happy” and “Loving Cup” are regarded as standards.
I picked up a used copy of Exile on CD used many years ago. The version I have is the CBS CD pressing from the 80′s (CGK 40489) which proudly announces “2 RECORD SET ON 1 COMPACT DISC.” When the Rolling Stones Records catalog went to Virgin Records they did a remaster of Exile along with the rest of the catalog which was released in July 1994 based on Amazon’s information and came in packaging that looked like the original LP. When I heard that a reissue and remaster was forthcoming, I was interested in replacing my CBS copy. The sheer number of options is surprising, but likely caters to anyone’s needs.
Exile on Main Street (1 CD “Original Recording Remastered”) This is the one that should tide over most Rolling Stones fans. This is the original 18-track album remastered and– according to Amazon.com– is in a special jewel case which will allow it to fit in the “Remasters Box” which was missing Exile. Should be $9.99 this week.
Exile on Main Street Deluxe Edition (2 CD “Deluxe Edition, Extra Tracks, Original Recording Remastered”) This release expands the 1 CD version to include a second 10-track CD of previously-unreleased tracks that were recorded around the same time as the music on Exile. Should be $19.99 this week. Note: If you buy the Deluxe Edition from Best Buy you will get a bonus interview CD.
Exile on Main Street Super Deluxe Edition (2 CD, 1 DVD, 2LP, Hard Cover Book, Original Recording Remastered) This release expands the 2 CD Deluxe Edition to include two LP’s and a 30-minute DVD which has a documentary on Exile which includes footage from “lost” documentary Cocksucker Blues and Ladies and Gentlemen… The Rolling Stones and Stones in Exile. The Ladies and Gentlemen film was a film which “toured” movie theaters in 1974. The film was based on the Exile tour. Also included is a 50-page hardcover book. A really nice package for certain. Should be around $179.98 list price, with Amazon listing it at $139.
Exile on Main Street 2 LP (2 LP, Original Recording Remastered) This is the 2 180g vinyl LP edition of Exile on Main Street in a double-gatefold sleeve. These are the same LP’s included in the Super Deluxe Edition. Should be $34.99 or less.
Exile on Main Street Rarities Edition (1 CD Target and iTunes Exclusive) This is a Target and iTunes exclusive release. This is effectively the second CD in the Deluxe and Super Deluxe editions. Ten tracks recorded during the same time as the Exile on Main Street songs. These songs have been produced and mixed by The Glimmer Twins and Don Was especially for the Exile reissues. The Sunday Target flier says that the Rarities Edition will be available for $9.99. Target also is offering a “Limited Edition Exile on Main Street Rarities Fan Pack” which bundles the Rarities Edition with a cool teeshirt and guitar pick– all for $19.99.
The cool thing about the Target Rarities Edition is that I can pick this single disc up and buy the LP edition and I get a kind of blend of the Deluxe and Super Deluxe editions. I get the main album on LP’s and the bonus tracks on a CD.
Whichever version of Exile on Main Street you choose, it is an essential album for anyone’s collection.
Last weekend Sherry attended America’s Beauty Show for the third year running and I got the opportunity to have some quality time with Chicago’s record stores. Friday night we went down to a bar called This Must Be The Place in Lemont, IL to see Chicago R&B phenom The Right Now. We got into town late, so we needed to scoot to try and get there in time to get something to eat. Thankfully the folks there were very accommodating and the food was excellent!
The show was a lot of fun– it was the first time I’d seen the band since they played Mahoney’s in Cedar Rapids in 2008 as Eli Jones. The band has come a long way in their stage show. Now the guys in the band all wear matching suits and Steph looked great in a sequined dress and heels. This was the first time the band had played This Must Be The Place and there was a pretty low turnout. Some of the dinner crowd stuck around through the first set but by the second set the audience was made up of Sherry and I and the employees of the bar. The band followed a setlist for the first set, but after the break they decided to loosen up a bit and played some older songs like “Candlelight and Satin Sheets” and “Disco Smooth” and a couple of newly-written songs.
I talked to the soundguy at the break a bit, and he said that the owner of the bar is trying to establish This Must Be The Place as a place for musicians to meet– sort of like The Green Mill or the Empty Bottle downtown. It is a lofty goal for sure as Lemont is about 45 minutes south of the Loop on I-55, and I think that getting the bands to come out of the Loop is a tough proposition. That said, the Metra runs down there so it isn’t an impossibility. It is a really nice venue with a great soundsystem and stage and the food and drinks are good. I’d come back if there was a good band there.
We got to hang out and talk to the band after the show– I was happy that Sherry got to meet them, and we talked a bit about the upcoming Iowa shows the weekend of 4/16 (Iowa City, Davenport and Cedar Rapids).
On Saturday, Sherry attended the first day of the conference at McCormick which started around Noon and I parked in the first floor lobby and worked on blog stuff. On Sunday she went to the second day of the conference and I decided I wanted to hit a Half-Price Books as I had the 50% Off One Item coupon. There are a few Half-Price Books in the Chicagoland area, but all of them are way out in the burbs. The closest one to McCormick Place was down in Countryside, IL off I-55 (pretty close to Lemont, really). So, I dropped Sherry off and hit I-55– it’s exit is right near McCormick Place.
The Countryside HPB has a pretty substantial collection of vinyl as it turns out– and a decent selection of obscure and Chicago-local bands. Unfortunately, I didn’t find a lot of stuff I was looking for. They had a Japanese pressing of the Blind Faithalbum for $30 that I was really interested in. It had the alternate cover featuring the band instead of the topless underaged-girl photo. It had a pretty deep scratch on it otherwise I would have bought it with my 50% coupon. They had two copies of Dave Brubeck’s Time Out– both appeared to be original pressings and one of them was a very worn Mono. I almost bought the Mono, but the wear and the seam-split cover had me passing on it. Plus, I have a very mint Stereo Columbia 6-eye I cherish, so I don’t need another copy, really. They also had Marti Jones’s second album Match Game on LP. Match Game was produced by Marti’s husband Don “Praying Mantis” Dixon. I have this on cassette, and would have liked to have this on vinyl, but it was missing an inner sleeve and was pretty worn. Here’s what I picked up:
Men At Work – Business As Usual (LP, CBS Records, FC 37978, 1982)($0.50) This was clearance-priced, and has a VG cover and vinyl. Fairly quiet on the turntable after I cleaned it. I listened to this and Cargoa lot in junior high school. Three pretty big singles in “Who Can It Be Now?”, “Down Under,” and “Be Good Johnny.” It was their appearance at the US Festival on “New Wave Day” that really helped establish the band and make them the MTV darlings. This album is strong all the way through– the singles are scattered throughout the record and serve as familiar landmarks through the rest of the songs. Men at Work were often considered a band that copied The Police– and quite a bit of this album with it’s bouncy ska rhythms and jazz influences certainly supports that idea. One of my favorite non-single tracks is “Helpless Automation” which recalls a new-wavy Devo. I included this song in a mixtape that I played all the time in High School. I need to get Cargo, next.
The Time – Ice Cream Castles (LP, Warner Bros. Records, 25109-1, 1984)($2.98) This is a title I don’t see very often (though, coincidentally would see again on Monday…). The story goes that Prince was trying to transition from the pop-funk sound that he established leading up to Controversyand apparently had a lot of music he still wanted to release in that vein. He puts his childhood friend Morris Day in front of a Minneapolis funk band called Flyte Time and creates The Time– on record, at least was mostly Prince and Day. By the time Ice Cream Castles is released in 1984, Terry Lewis and Jimmy Jam had been fired by Prince for missing a show and Morris Day quit to pursue an acting career propelled by his appearance in Purple Rain. Although the album cover shows the post-Lewis and Jam version of the band– which has a shockingly-young St. Paul Peterson on the cover. If his birthdate in October of 1964 is correct, St. Paul was 18 when he played in the Time. He wasn’t on the album, however and only apparently played two live gigs in the Twin Cities and he appears in the movie Purple Rain. After Morris Day leaves The Time, Prince gathers the remaining members and his then-girlfriend Susannah Melvoin and creates The Family. The Family are re-united as F Deluxe (Prince denies them the use of the name The Family– apparently still bitter about St. Paul leaving the group). Ice Cream Castles has what amounts to the biggest songs from The Time– “The Bird” and “Jungleland” which are both featured prominently in the Purple Rain movie. The production is credited to “The Starr Company” which is effectively Prince, who sometimes used the alias “Jamie Starr.” The original album inner sleeve is black plastic, interestingly.
My plan was to hit another Half Price Books and spend my 50% coupon, but the next closest one was another 35 miles away. I did a quick Google Maps search for nearby record stores and found one called The Record Dugout(6055 West 63rd Street, Chicago, IL 60638-4317). The Record Dugout is technically in Chicago– although really far south in Chicago. It’s a moderately-sized store that specializes in vinyl LP’s dating up to the 80′s, comic books and sports cards. The day I was there, the guy who handles the vinyl part of the store was working. His name is Bob Miner and he hosts an acapella radio show on The University of Chicago radio station WHPK which airs on Sunday evenings and is called “From the Subway to the Streetcorner.” The store was literally packed with vinyl. There was one row of sorted Rock in record bins, another shorter row for Jazz and folk/country, another “discount bin” with $1-$2 records, and a meticulously-organized bin with 7″ records– the majority of which was R&B from the 50′s/60′s/70′s. Other areas included a “Wall of Shame” as Bob called it, which showcased the more expensive records– rare 7″es with sleeves, etc., a table which had unsorted piles of cheap records in varying degrees of shape– most of which had damaged sleeves, but had serviceable records in them, and two areas on the floor which had $1 and $2 records piled up.
I found most of the haul below in the sorted bins, but the ones for $1 and $2 I found by digging. Bob buys whole collections of records from people looking to get rid of them, so if he hasn’t gotten through them, the good stuff might not be in the bins. Everything seemed to have prices, however. It’s important to note that The Record Dugout only takes cash and the nearest ATMs charge fees, so bring cash. Also, if you buy a lot of stuff, Bob will work with you on price. I spent about three hours here, and probably could have spent more time. I’ll certainly come back!
R.E.M. – Lifes Rich Pageant(LP, IRS Records, IRS-5783, 1986) ($4.00) I might have paid a bit too much for this one. The sleeve was not split, but kind of rough on the corners and the paper sleeve was replaced with another sleeve. The record is pretty clean, and after I gave it a thorough wipe with 91% Isopropyl Alcohol to get it cleaned, it sounds really good– the surface is a bit hazy, however. R.E.M. is tough to find in the bins, so I’ll pick these up when I find them. Lifes Rich Pageant was the follow-up to Fables of the Reconstruction, which was the album that pretty much changed my music listening. R.E.M. called this their “John Cougar Mellencamp album” because it was produced by Don Gehman at Mellencamp’s studio in Indiana. Classic R.E.M. sound on this one– “Begin the Begin,” “Hyena,” “Fall on Me,” “Superman,” “I Believe” are all strong tracks in the R.E.M. canon. The song “Just a Touch” was a song resurrected from the early days of the band and a number of bootleg recordings from the early 80′s have this song.
Bob Seger & the Silver Bullet Band – Nine Tonight(2 LP, Capitol Records, STBK-12182, 1981)($2.00) I found this one in one of the piles on the floor– hence its $2 price. Fabulously clean cover and LP’s! My dad bought this cassette when it was new and we used to listen to this a lot riding around in the car. A live album comprised of songs recorded in Detroit and Boston in 1980. All of his classic tracks are here– “Hollywood Nights,” “Tryin’ to Live My Life Without You,” “Night Moves,” “You’ll Accomp’ny Me,” “Old Time Rock ‘n’ Roll,” “Mainstreet,” “Fire Lake,” “Fire Down Below.” Probably the only album of Bob’s I would care to own, although I’d need Live Bullet to get “Turn the Page.”
Various – The Breakfast Club- The Original Motion Picture Soundtrack(LP, A&M Records, SP 5045, 1985)($2.00) Another one from the floor. Cover is in good condition and the record looks decent, but there seems to be a lot of groove wear on this one– particularly on “(Don’t You) Forget About Me” by Simple Minds. This was a soundtrack that my brother Steve and I listened to a lot– in fact, I think the cassette was actually his. My band in high school with Steve used to cover “(Don’t You) Forget About Me.” Fantastic drum beat in that song, which is why it is so timeless. It’s a kind of well-known story that Simple Minds didn’t write the song– it was penned by Keith Forsey who also wrote “Flashdance… What a Feeling” for Irene Kara. After being turned down by Billy Idol, Bryan Ferry and Simple Minds– it was encouraged by A&M that Simple Minds record the song. It becomes their biggest hit which help propel their career for a couple of albums. This soundtrack always struck me in how different it was to other John Hughes soundtracks in that while it had a huge single in “(Don’t You) Forget About Me,” it was really lacking in every other respect. I became familiar with the other songs by Wang Chung, E.G. Daily, Jesse Johnson, and Karla DeVito but aside from “Fire in the Twilight” from Wang Chung, which frankly sounds like an outtake from Points on the Curve, everything else seems like bargain-basement licensing– particularly if you compare it to the powerhouse soundtrack to Pretty in Pink, for example. The instrumentals by Forsey, while largely forgettable, work really well in the context of the movie.
In the 80′s it really seemed like you couldn’t have a soundtrack to a teen movie that didn’t include songs by E.G. Daily. She contributed her unique vocals to movies like Better off Dead — where she performs her two songs in the movie, Summer School, Thief of Hearts as well as The Breakfast Club. She’s a pretty talented lady, and is a regular for voiceovers. It is she who voices Tommy Pickles in Rugrats, for example.
Talking Heads - Speaking In Tongues (LP, Sire Records, 23883-1, 1983) ($2.00) Another one from the floor piles. The cover and inner sleeve are in tact, if a bit beat up. I have no Talking Heads on vinyl– well except for a bootleg called humorously enough Gimme Heads which has some studio outtakes and live tracks on it and a 12″ to “Blind.” After cleaning this one up, it plays pretty well, but I’ll be on the lookout for better copies. Last year’s Record Store Day had a Rhino reissue for 77– so I was hoping for some other reissues on vinyl. The Dugout also had True Stories on vinyl, but it was in pretty rough shape so I passed on it. Speaking In Tongues is pretty much the Talking Heads pinnacle release with the massive “Burning Down The House” single as well as secondary hits of “Girlfriend is Better,” and “Naive Melody.” Of course, these songs would show up in a bunch of movie soundtracks. I remember “Naive Melody” standing out in the soundtrack to Wall Street, and “Swamp” shows up in Risky Business. These tracks are featured prominently in the Talking Heads concert movie Stop Making Sensewhich was directed by Jonathan Demme.
Fleetwood Mac – Mirage (LP, Warner Bros. Records, W1 23607, 1982)($3.00) Very clean vinyl– cover has a suspicious wear spot, like someone used water to take adhesive off the cover. Also a Columbia House pressing. Clearly I didn’t look very closely at this one. I don’t like to take Columbia House pressings normally due to the uncertain nature of what they used for masters. That said, it is very clean and plays well, and is one of the better copies of Mirage I’ve seen, even with those flaws. The Mac tries to come back from the Titanic expensive failure that was Tusk (still my favorite, however). I really like Mirage– the band comes back to the style and sound of Rumours. The album had six singles released worldwide, but the biggest singles were “Hold Me” and “Gypsy.” The album makes it to #1 on the US charts, so it is clear that their audience wanted another album, but in the canon of Fleetwood Mac, Mirage is not one that people remember.
My first Fleetwood Mac concert was for the Miragetour in 1982. My family saw them in Cedar Falls with Glenn Frey of the Eagles opening on his first solo tour. I’ve seen Fleetwood Mac three more times since then– once during the very sad Time tour with Dave Mason and Bekka Bramlett on guitars and vocals in Dubuque, once for The Dance tour and once for the Say You Will Tour.
Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band – Live/1975-85(5 LP, Columbia Records 40558 LP, 1986)($15.00) This one was a cool find. I bought this new on cassette back in 1986– and still have it. I’ve seen it on CD over the years used, but never on LP. A great collection of Bruce live goodness from what most people would consider the high-point of his career. I think that they should do an official release of the legendary Winterland 1978 show. The version of “Santa Claus is Comin’ to Town” heard at Christmas time is from that show. This box set does, however, include the version of “Fire” from that show. The Winterland 1978 show had been bootlegged many times over the years– since it was aired live on the radio, lots of folks taped it. Wolfgang’s Vault helpfully has the show in their archives, but it is not one that is purchasable. Listen here.
The vinyl on this box is pretty much pristine, even if the box itself isn’t. One I’ll want to kick back and listen to with a glass of wine some night.
Booker T. & The MG’s – “Hip Hug-Her” b/w “Summertime”(7″ Stax 45-211, 1965)($4.00) I hadn’t really planned to pick up any 45′s, but they had a dedicated section just for Stax! So, I flipped through it and they had a few Booker T. & The MG’s singles. I picked this one because it was on the massively cool light blue Stax label. The record is in great shape for being 45 years old!
Wilson Pickett – “Funky Broadway” b/w “I’m Sorry About That” (7″, Atlantic Records, 45-2430, 1967)($3.00) This one is one of the singles I really dig from Wilson Pickett– on the red Atlantic label. Super-clean and in an Atlantic paper sleeve.
The Dangtrippers – “The Masquerade” b/w “Lover’s Again”(7″, Dog Gone Records, DOG 0005-7″, 1989)($3.50) Why is it that if I want to find rare Iowa bands in the bins I need to leave Iowa? The Dangtrippers were Doug Roberson of The Diplomats of Solid Sound’s 90′s band. I still remember seeing The Dangtrippers playing the Loras College gym when I went to school there. The band got signed to Dog Gone records which was the record label started by Jefferson Holt who was the manager for R.E.M. This is the single to the only album released for The Dangtrippers on Dog Gone before it went under (see below). “Lover’s Again” is a non-album b-side!
Prince and the Revolution – Around the World in a Day(LP, Paisley Park W1-25286, 1985)($3.00) A Columbia House pressing, but in superb shape! I’ve never seen this on LP before! I have this in this crazy longbox trifold CD I picked up at a Discount Records in the early 90′s in Chicago. The LP cover is sort of a trifold with a short flap that folds over. The cover art is a painted scene which has in it representations of each of the songs– a tambourine, a ladder, an American flag, a raspberry beret– the ones I found anyway… A pretty progressive album– lots of psychedelica and strangeness– Prince at his most experimental. “Pop Life” and “Raspberry Beret” were the big singles off this album, but I think that most people ignore this album. I liked it back when it came out, but admittedly haven’t listened to it much since the 80′s. Giving it a spin the other night, I’m struck by some of the songs. In fact, I like all of the album other than the track “Temptation.”
The next day I dropped Sherry off at the conference again and I headed up to Lincoln Square to hit Laurie’s Planet of Sound, which I had hit back in October of 2007. The store was pretty quiet when I got there. They changed the parking meters to be able to take credit cards, which is convenient, but still really expensive. I blew $3 to get a couple of hours of parking. Laurie’s has a new arrivals section for their CD’s and LP’s and has a section dedicated to new vinyl as well. Their vinyl prices are higher than places like the dugout, but comparable to places like HPB which is attempting to charge market prices for some.
Ben Harper and the Innocent Criminals – Burn to Shine(2 LP, Virgin Records America, 7243 8 48151 1 0, 1999)($9.99) This was in the new arrivals section and appears to be a cutout of sorts as the barcode is crossed out. Probably a promo or a giveaway, but is in great shape. I hadn’t really paid much attention to Ben Harper until I saw him as part of that 3D concert movie “Larger Than Life” back in December. I was impressed enough to pick up Harper’s new record White Lies for Dark Times on vinyl. Burn to Shine is considered to be one of his good releases so I thought it might be a good gamble. I gave it a spin when I got home, and it’s a good one for the collection.
Bumps (2 LP, Stones Throw Records, STH2157, 2007)($12.99) This was a new purchase. Bumps is the side project of the Tortoise rhythm section of Bitney, McEntire & Herndon. This is a record of beats, essentially. This is a really cool 2 LP version that was price cut from $15.99 to $12.99. This is mostly as a completion for my Tortoise vinyl collection, I don’t see myself playing this often.
Cougar – Law (LP, Layered Music/Play It Again Sam, LR013, 2007/2008)($4.99) Although it isn’t really listed anywhere on the artwork and the LP itself only lists 4 tracks, this appears to be the full Lawalbum that was released in 2007 in the UK by Layered Music. Madison, WI band Cougar is classified as “emergency” music although I think they fit under the “post rock” area. Having your debut album mixed by John McEntire of Tortoise doesn’t hurt this classification either.
The Dangtrippers – Days Between Stations (LP, Dog Gone, DOG 0005, 1989)($2.99) Wow! Another Dangtrippers find? The cover is a bit trashed on this one, but I didn’t know that this was even available on LP! I see on eBay there are a couple of LPs– one for $14.99 and one for $19.99, so $2.99 is a good deal. The vinyl is very clean. As I stated above, The Dangtrippers were a band from Iowa City from the 80′s and early 90′s that got signed to Dog Gone Records. They had this album out on Dog Gone before the label went under. Their second album Transparent Blue Illusionwhich came out in 1991 was only available on the Australian label Zero Hour. The Dangtrippers had a 60′s jangly rock sound that owed a lot to bands like The dB’s. In fact, the song “Talk About Love” on Days Between Stations sounds a lot like The dB’s and it’s pretty much my favorite track on the album.
That song reminds me of a very bad trip to Florida in the early 90′s with my then-girlfriend to visit some friends of hers. The trip started out okay– it was Florida in late December and her friends had a gorgeous house with a pool and a Porsche 928 that was ours for the borrowing. We visited a mall that had a discount book store or something and I found Days Between Stations on CD there in the bins!
The trip took a turn for the worst as she started giving me the silent treatment and wouldn’t talk about why she was upset. So, I was stuck in Florida with someone who clearly didn’t want to be there with me. We had a painful trip to Disney World followed by a really uncomfortable New Year’s Eve get together. By the time we flew back to Chicago to drive back to Dubuque I had enough of this ridiculous situation where she wasn’t talking to me about why she was upset. So, she was rewarded with four hours of “Talk About Love” on repeat in full volume. The relationship didn’t last much longer– she didn’t like not being the center of attention with her friends and I apparently drew some attention from her. I still dig the frustrated energy of that song.
Click Here to hear “Talk About Love” from Days Between Stationsby The Dangtrippers.
Love Tractor – Around the Bend (LP, DB Recs, DB67, 1983)($4.99) This was another very cool find! Of course, this is where I’ll alienate some of the readers. I found out about Love Tractor due to the documentary Athens, GA Inside/Outabout the music scene in Athens leading up to 1987– R.E.M. is just getting to be a big deal in college rock– it was released before Document with “The One I Love” on it– so the movie happens at an opportune time. Included in the movie is Love Tractor who perform a live version of “Pretty” from Around the Bend. The album is largely instrumental with some sparse vocals. I had Around the Bend on a double-cassette which included their debut self-titled album and the follow-up Until the Cows Come Home. I find their unique style to be pretty similar to Athens contemporaries Pylon.
I actually owned the soundtrack for Athens, GA Inside/Outfor a long time before I ever saw the movie. The soundtrack included two acoustic tracks from R.E.M. “Swan Swan H” and a cover of the Everly Brothers song “All I Have To Do is Dream” so I had to get it. By the time the movie came out on VHS, I was very familiar with a lot of the songs in it, including “Pretty.”
Click Here to listen to “Pretty” from Around the Bend by Love Tractor.
I also bought a bag of 100 mylar LP bags for $20. I never seem to have enough of those. I could get these cheaper online from Bags Unlimited, but since I was thinking of it, I thought I’d buy them.
As I was walking back to my car I happened to catch someone out of the corner of my eye– it was Chris Corsale from The Right Now sitting in a window of a sandwich shop playing acoustic guitar and singing! He was suprised to see me as well! So, I moved my car to a side street– which is free and doesn’t require a permit after 11AM. Then I came back to the restaurant and ate lunch hanging out with him in between sets. It was pretty cool– Chris has a pretty wide selection of covers he does and made for good lunchtime entertainment. A great coincidence that sort of made for a good wrap-up of the weekend.
After lunch I made my way back to McCormick Place to pick Sherry up and head home.
With the eventual release of the Neil Young Archives Volume One this year which spanned the years 1963 to 1972, that meant that it was time for Warner’s to work on the remasters of Neil’s releases on vinyl. Most of his popular (sold lots of) back catalog and all of his recent releases have been in print in vinyl for a number of years, but with the work done to release the Archives releases it was time to revisit the vinyl.
On December 1st, a limited edition (3000 worldwide) box set of 180g LP’s entitled Neil Young Official Release Series Discs 1-4will be released and is a remastering of the first four solo Neil Young albums: Neil Young from January 1969, Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere from May 1969, After the Gold Rush from August 1970, and Harvest from February 1972. These four albums are from the same period of time represented by the Archives Volume One.
The records were mastered by Chris Bellman at Bernie Grundman Mastering (source) and pressed by Furnace MFG by their German partner Pallas Group (source) on 180g vinyl. Furnace MFG handled the packaging of the LPs and the box, lovingly recreating the cover art and gold-foil-stamping the serial number on each. In the case of the Harvest LP, they located the last manufacturer in the US that can still make hand-glued gatefold covers to carefully reproduce the original cover. According to the press release, “once the box sets are gone, this limited edition configuration will no longer be available,” which I would take to mean that there will be individual 180g pressings of these releases available. Confusingly, a couple of online retailers seem to be touting that they have the individual 180g LP’s for sale, but I’m also seeing a “standard” vinyl release, which seems to be a 140g pressing, which is confirmed by the Musicangle.com article referenced above.
In keeping with the perpetual delay of the original Archives series, we’ve already experienced one delay with the vinyl box– the original release was going to be 11/24, however there was an e-mail sent out by Warner Brothers late last week that said the new ship/release would be 12/1. Not a big deal, but with all of the press given to the delays surrounding the Archives, this announcement seems ominous– hopefully for no reason.
In any event, this is a respectible effort on the part of Warner/Reprise and really appealing to vinyl collectors. Clearly, Neil Young’s catalog is an important one, and these four albums are landmark releases for him establishing him as one of the great songwriters of our time. At $149.98 plus shipping it is a significant investment. If you break down the 180g individual releases– all of the records are around $22 except for Harvest, which is $34– the box set adds a $50 premium on top.
The Archives Volume 2 is reputed to be released in 2010 and should represent the second decade (1973-1982) if they stay with the established pattern. Interestingly, this would mean that the subsequent box would be a real lunker at ten LPs if he chooses to keep Time Fades Awayunreleased. I would suspect that he will leave it unreleased based on the first Archives. There was a soundtrack associated with the 1972 film Journey Through The Past which he opted not to reissue, which isn’t a huge loss. The film exists as a disc in the Archives, however. This is further substantiated by the fact that Time Fades Away was remastered with HDCD in 1995 according to the Wikipedia article, and was subsequently shelved.
The recorded output represented by Archives Volume 2, then would be On the Beach (1974), Tonight’s The Night (1975), Zuma (1975), American Stars n Bars (1977), Comes A Time (1978), Rust Never Sleeps (1979), Live Rust (1979), Hawks & Doves (1980), Reactor (1981), and finally Trans (1982). Trans will be the first appearance of Neil’s controversial Geffen years. I’m not sure if any of these releases were gatefold, so I’d estimate this box to cost over $220. Live Rust was two LP’s so it will likely cost more than the other releases.
Likely, though, the sheer weight of a 10-180g-LP box would prevent one monolithic box and will probably come out as two 5-LP boxes. This is possible since the contents of the current box is designated simply by “Discs 1-4,” so there could be an Official Release Series Discs 5-9 and Official Release Series Discs 10-14.
Click Here to order the Neil Young Official Release Series Discs 1-4 from BecauseSoundMatters.com
For the band’s follow-up 12″ due to drop on February 16, 2010 they are offering a unique opportunity. If you send in an album cover before January 18th you can have your copy of the 12″ screened in a cover of your choosing! Obvious choices might be an LP of a local high school choir or high school band from the 70′s that recorded an LP– I see a lot of those in the bins. Maybe you have duplicates of a favorite release– I have multiples of Days of Future Past by the Moody Blues for example– from upgrading. These are just two examples of covers you might choose that have unique significance to you.
If you send $5 and a hoodie or teeshirt, they’ll screen that to give you a unique Javelin article of clothing. Very cool. Thrill Jockey stated in a recent e-mail that if you didn’t have a sleeve to send in, there would be more sleeve selected by the band available. Keep in mind that this is a release of 500– so if you plan to participate get your sleeve and mail it to Thrill Jockey!
Here’s how it works:
1) You pick a jacket out and mail it here:
Thrill Jockey Records P.O. Box 08038 Chicago, IL 60608
2) On the inside of the jacket you need to write your name, address, and
email. This is how we will identify which one is yours when you place your
3) When you place your order with our mail order department, be sure to
include MY JACKET in the order message. We will then match up your details
and send you your unique copy!
4) As an added bonus for our special mail order customers, if you include
$5 and a t-shirt or hoodie, we will have your article of clothing screenprinted
and turned into a piece of unique Javelin merchandise and sent back with
Feel free to send in your jacket as soon as you like – no need to wait until
you’ve ordered the records. As long as you follow the above instructions,
we’ll make sure your 12″ comes in the record jacket you sent.
“Number Two” is set for release on February 16th and everyone who sends
in a jacket will be notified in advance of when they can actually place
the order. Of course, if you’d rather cast your lot with Fate, we’ll be
printing up a handful of random jackets just like last time as well.
Doug Roberson of the Diplomats of Solid Sound posted a Facebook event for a yard sale he was having. He was moving across town in Iowa City and decided, like many of us would, that he had some things he didn’t want to move so he decided to have a yard sale. Knowing that Doug is a record collector and having talked with him the night before when the band played Coctails and Company in Cedar Rapids about what he might have, I made the trip down.
It was a drizzly day which was sort of concerning, but I got down there around 1:30 and he had all of the records on his front porch. He was sitting on a lawn chair drinking a Budweiser and chatting with the other people hanging out looking at his stuff. Most of the people, as you might imagine were Iowa City scenesters– people in other bands in town, people who were fans of his bands. So, it was pretty cool.
He was selling a lot of vinyl– almost all of it duplicates he accumulated over the years in addition to some books, magazines, and some music gear like a couple of Farfisa organs used with his prior band The Bent Scepters and a couple of guitar amps. He also had a pretty substantial collection of 7-inch singles– a LOT of King Records releases of James Brown. I think someone could have bought most of a James Brown 7″ collection– if not all– right there!
I was hoping to pick up some rare pieces from Doug’s pretty extensive career and I wasn’t disappointed! I ended up picking up the following records for, I think $35. I good haul, for sure!
The Bent Scepters – “She Freak” b/w “The Curse” (7″, Prescription Records PRE001, 1993) This was a nice find. Doug’s band The Bent Scepters was formed out of the ashes of The Dangtrippers and Head Candy. The Bent Scepters’ certainly fulfilled Doug’s penchant for of 60′s Nuggets-style garage pop. The Scepters were closer in sound to the Dangtrippers than the layered distortion grunge delivered by Head Candy. Doug’s current band The Diplomats of Solid Sound started as kind of a side band of the Scepters. On Prescription Records which is Doug’s “vanity” label.
The Bent Scepters – “My Toyota” b/w The Delstars – “Lustron a Go-Go” (7″ split, Prescription Records PRE002, 1997) While I was flipping through the records, Doug found a box that had record pressing plates and a couple white-label 7″ test pressings for a split 7″ he put out with the Des Moines surfy band The Delstars. “My Toyota” comes from the Scepters second album Hellevator Music.
The Diplomats of Solid Sound featuring the Diplomettes – “If You’re Wrong” b/w “If You’re Wrong (Lack of Afro rmx)” (7″, Record Kicks RK45 023, 2008) This one sort of took me by surprise because I didn’t know that there was a second 7″ from Record Kicks. The first single was “Plenty Nasty” backed by “Hurt Me So (Lack of Afro Remix).” I hadn’t heard about this release, but apparently the band has been carrying this 7″ in their merch box. The remix by Lack of Afro is pretty similar to the remix he did for “Hurt Me So”– it adds a clubby groove to it.
The Shy Strangers – Indian Name (LP, Pravda Records PR-2616, 1986) Doug had an unopened box of still-sealed copies of Doug’s pre-Dangtrippers band The Shy Strangers. This record is still in print and can be ordered from Pravda for $4.99! I haven’t dropped a needle on this one, yet. The Shy Strangers was Roberson, Jim Merrick on drums and Scott Stecklein on bass. Doug and Scott were in The Dangtrippers and The Bent Scepters together.
I was hoping for some rare Head Candy stuff, but according to Doug there really wasn’t much more than the CD. There was promotional purple 7″ for “At The Controls” / “Watching the Sun’s Trail” I need to pick up some time, but Doug didn’t have any of those. Here’s the other non-Doug stuff I picked up:
Eric Dolphy – Out to Lunch (LP, Blue Note BLP-4163/84163, 1964) Sax player Eric Dolphy’s first and only release for Blue Note as a solo artist. The album was recorded by the legendary Rudy Van Gelder in February 1964. Soon after Dolphy moved to Paris and died in June 1964 from a diabetic coma. Out to Lunch is considered to be one of the essential free jazz records– considered by some to be on par with A Love Supreme. The label says “Blue Note – A Product of Liberty Records.” This release came soon after Blue Note and Liberty were purchased by Avnet in 1965. This also explains the “84163″ catalog number. According to this label breakdown, my copy of Out To Lunch is a post-1968 repressing as my label art says “Blue Note Records – A Division of United Artists Records, Inc.” United Artists was a division of Transamerica which picked up Liberty and its associated imprints in 1968.
Lonnie Smith – Drives (LP, Blue Note Records BST 84351, 1970) This was a still-sealed reissue of Dr. Lonnie Smith’s funky, organ-fueled Blue Note release. The label shows the old 304 Park Ave. South address which I’m not sure would have been right. This would have been a UA release and I think they changed the labels to look like the Dolphy release above. I think this was a 90′s reissue done by EMI. Covers of “Spinning Wheel” by BS&T, the great “Twenty Five Miles” originally done by Edwin Starr, and “Seven Steps to Heaven” by Miles Davis.
Donald Byrd – The Cat Walk (LP, Blue Note Records BL-4075, 1961) This was also a still-sealed reissue of trumpet player Donald Byrd’s 1961 solo release with regular sidekick Pepper Adams. I wasn’t very familiar with Donald Byrd’s work other than a couple of compilation tracks– notably “Blackjack” which was included on the Blue Note Rare Grooves comp. An easy bop record.
Julian Cope – Saint Julian (LP, Island Records/ATCO 90571-1, 1987) This was a nice find- not a record I was actually looking for, but one for the memories. I wasn’t familiar with Cope’s first band The Teardrop Explodes when I heard “World Shut Your Mouth” all those years ago. I listened to this record a lot in ’87 and found a guy in college who was a fan as well and got me to dig a bit deeper into Cope’s catalog. I still find myself coming back to this record. These days Julian Cope has become a strange cultish figure and I’m not following him as much, but this record is pretty much the best of his releases in my opinion.
Richard & Linda Thompson – Hokey Pokey (LP, Carthage Records CGLP 4408, 1983) This is the 1983 reissue of the 1974 Island release of Hokey Pokey. According to this thread on the stevehoffman.tv boards Carthage Records and Hannibal Records were run by Joe Boyd who discovered Pink Floyd among other things. These reissues and sometime new releases were centered around UK Folk groups like Fairport Convention. It would be cool to pick up Shoot Out the Lights by Richard & Linda on vinyl. I have it on 24kt CD today. I wasn’t familiar with this album, but I picked it up because the record seemed in good shape and Richard & Linda are notable musicians. I haven’t had a chance to listen to it yet.
It’s week #2 of the Pax-Am reboot and we are treated with another digital single from Ryan Adams’s archives. This time we get a track that was dropped from early consideration for Cardinology and another track that surfaced a bit as a “foggy” video. The third track is another demo from Cardinology.
Side A is the track “Allumette” clocking in at 1:43 and according to the Ryan Adams scholars on the ryanadamsarchive.com site was listed on an early proposed tracklisting for Cardinology.
Apparently the song is in reference to the 1974 book by Tomi Ungerer titled Allumette; A Fable, with Due Respect to Hans Christian Andersen, the Grimm Brothers, and the Honorable Ambrose Bierce. The Ungerer book is a re-imagining of the Hans Christian Andersen story “The Little Match Girl” where the girl this time lives and carries out her wish.
Side B is the track “What Color Is Rain” which showed up as a video on the old version of Ryan’s video blog, affectionately called “Foggy.”
Again we are treated to a home demo of Cardinology– this time “Go Easy.”
All three songs are 160Kbps mp3′s and there aren’t any FLAC’s or cover art.
As you might imagine this caused quite a stir on the boards since this release differred in content from the first single’s inclusion of FLAC’s. Another point that upset some was that these songs weren’t the same quality as the songs on the first single, which were ostensibly multitrack recordings that were mixed for release and these songs were sketches. But for $1.49 who should complain? All of these songs are unreleased and we’re lucky that these songs are seeing the light of day– AND Ryan is excited to release them!
Both “Allumette” and “What Color Is Rain” are relatvely short songs but sound like they might have been written about the same time– both using multitracked guitar picking and utilizing a similar drum track. According to Ryan’s retorts to the complaints he used GarageBand to record them.
Both songs are very pretty songs with Ryan singing in a soft but urgent voice. These are songs that would have fit comfortably on Easy Tiger.
Click Here to purchase Pax-Am Digital Single No. 2
Click Here to read my review of Pax-Am Digital Single No. 1