John Convertino of Calexico holding the vinyl LP of the new Ancienne Belgique Vol 2
This morning via their Facebook Page, Calexico announced that they will be selling CD’s and vinyl of a new tour-only live release titled Anceinne Belgique Vol 2.
Hey Everyone we have a new tour only album for sale. It’s a live recording from the Ancienne Belgique in Brussels this past September 2012 featuring new songs off of the album “Algiers” as well as some old songs too. Mixed by Craig Schumacher and mastered by Jim Blackwood, it is available on CD and as a double LP on vinyl. Here’s John with a copy hot off the press. We have copies on tour.
This is volume 2, because Calexico released the first album back in 2009 of their October 2008 show, which was also a tour-only release. I wrote about it here. The first volume also got a vinyl treatment in the amazing Road Atlas Box Set of their previously CD-only tour releases. That box is out-of-print and really scarce. I wrote about the Road Atlas Box here, and made a nifty 32-minute mix of tracks from it as a freely-downloadable mp3.
The band will have copies with them on tour– currently underway in Europe and running until March 3rd. In response to all of the people commenting on the post that they wanted to buy it and couldn’t see them on their current tour of Europe, they said that they will have copies in the band’s website store “hopefully soon.” The band helpfully provided me with the tracklisting:
04. Dead Moon
05. El Picador
06. Sinner in the Sea
07. No Te Vayas
08. Maybe on Monday
11. Close Behind
13. The Vanishing Mind
14. Güero Canelo
It’s no secret that I’m a big fan of Bay Area Pop Funk Chanteuse Karyn Paige. Today, I’m happy to announce that she’s dropping a new single to tide us over until she finishes her full length album.
Consistent with her first release, The KP EP (I reviewed here), her latest single “You Know I’ll Always Love You” pays tribute to the Pop R&B heyday of the 80′s with swelling and buzzy synthesizers. Ms. Paige transforms from the sexy fuming diva sitting on the bed in “Stay Away Tonight” to a sunny girl in love that reminds me of Paula Abdul’s great singles.
The smartly spare arrangements, and loping percussion draws us very close to Karyn’s lovely soprano with an adopted affected stuffiness that recalls 1920′s and 30′s jazz singers. Factor in the slightly-kitschy talk box harmony vocal effects and you have one perfect pop song.
I asked Karyn why she chose to release this single ahead of the full length album she’s working on.
“The motivation for releasing the song ahead of the full LP was simple: Fans who have seen us play it live are constantly asking when we are going to put it out. People are really drawn to it, from music heads to moms. I wanted to give my fans something new to enjoy until the LP comes out. It was written by my co-producer and keyboard player Matt Berkeley, and I’ve always been honored to sing it.”
On November 1st, Hiss Golden Messenger will be releasing a new album called Poor Moon. Poor Moon will be released on a new record label, Paradise of Bachelors and will come out in a hand-numbered limited edition of 500 on beautiful 150g vinyl with a tip-on sleeve designed by Brendan Greaves from Paradise of Bachelors featuring a beautifully-detailed illustration by Alex Jako.
As if this wasn’t enough reason to jump on this purchase, there are tiers you can purchase at which get you bonus downloads. The base $20 “Oak” level gets you the vinyl on your doorstep around 11/1/11, but also a digital download of the album via Bandcamp on 10/15, so you can enjoy it whilst you wait for the physical version. (By the way, they are charging a very reasonable $5 domestic shipping and handling, as opposed to typical shipping charges seen via TopSpin these days). If you order at the $25 “Ash” level, you get an EP of demos and outtakes titledLord, I Love the Rain which has some tracks from the Bad Debt sessions as well as some studio tracks from an “conceptual soundtrack” called He Wore Rings on Every Finger. At the $30 “Rowan” level you get the aforementioned EP, plus a live recording from 2008 called Plowed: Live in Bovina which was recorded in upstate New York around the same time that the Root Work radio session was taped.
Notably, the tracks on Lord, I Love The Rain will be the basis of the next HGM release, which is targeted for Spring 2012!
As for Poor Moon itself– the album shares it roots with the kitchen table ruminations of Bad Debt in that most of the songs started there. We get full-band treatments of “Balthazar’s Song,” “O Little Light,” “Jesus Shot Me in the Head,” a driving “Super Blue (Two Days Clean),” Balthazar’s Song” and “Call Him Daylight” (which was a bonus track on the vinyl version of Bad Debt). The Lord, I Love the Rain EP also includes a Bad Debt version of “Westering.” So, you might consider Bad Debt and Poor Moon together as being a “deluxe” edition.
There are few songwriters today that have the ability to capture the sentiment of reaching desire that really grabs me. I think that MC Taylor is in a small group of current songwriters that includes Kurt Wagner of Lambchop and Richard Buckner that excel in this. If you’ve been following the combined story of The Court & Spark and Hiss Golden Messenger, the music on Poor Moon is not as much a revelation as it is a reinforcement of this fact.
Poor Moon captures a certain timelessness in its sound– the production doesn’t stand in the way of the music. Taylor confirms this in a recent conversation, “That was the intention. I wanted sort of a neutral production with the rhythm section fairly up front– which it is– and more acoustic instruments than Country Hai and Root Work. Country Hai was a concerted effort to feature no acoustic guitar whatsoever.”
To that end, Taylor has never been afraid to draw inspiration from his very diverse musical tastes and Poor Moon to these ears has some subtle but definite vibe and tone from early 70′s Van Morrison and Grateful Dead (more American Beauty than Aoxomoxoa, though). Certainly a more rustic setting than Country Hai, I would say, but no less enjoyable.
Below are the Bandcamp links to samples of tracks from Poor Moon and the two bonus releases and the links to order.
This afternoon Ryan Adams posted the link to the preorder for his upcoming release Ashes & Fire to Facebook which is due out on October 11th on PaxAm Records through a distribution arrangement with Capitol Records. The album was recorded at Sunset Sound in Los Angeles and produced by Glyn Johns who produced albums from the likes of The Who, The Clash and The Rolling Stones among many others. Glyn happens to be the father of Ethan Johns who worked on Adams’ Heartbreaker, Gold and 29. The album has garnered a substantial amount of buzz since it is his first studio album of new material since Cardinology in 2008– although he did some housecleaning by releasing some archival material in the form of his Metal Space Opera Orion and III/IV, a collection of songs recorded around Easy Tiger in addition to some 7″es and some digital releases.
Ryan solicited help on the album with some keyboards by Heartbreaker Benmont Tench (what albums is he not on these days?) and some vocals from Norah Jones on several tracks (she provided the guest vocals on “Dear John” for him previously).
Along with the link to access the pre-orders, Ryan posted a bandcamp link to “Lucky Now” which is also a free download with the pre-order. Everyone who pre-orders will get a digital download of the album the day of the release by accessing their online account created at order time.
There are four pre-order options for Ashes & Fire. CD and vinyl ($12.99 and $20.00 respectively) and a Deluxe Bundle which can either be CD ($40) or vinyl ($50) and a Deluxe Bundle with a teeshirt ($50 for CD, $60 for vinyl). The extra goodies for the Deluxe Bundles includes a flexidisc of unreleased track “Darkness” as a 3D Lenticular Photo of Ryan Adams, a Booklet of expanded album artwork including 3D photos, A pair of Ryan Adams 3D Glasses and PAX-AM Bucks (To be redeemed toward future paxamrecords.com store purchases).
The session is a nice cross-section of Pieta’s career:
1. “#807″ is from her 2005 release In The Cool, which was released on Valley Entertainment and apparently is still in print!
2. “Going Away Blues” is a Frank Stokes cover that Pieta also recorded for her self-released 2003 EP I Never Told which is impossibly out-of-print. I managed to get one of these when Pieta discovered a box last year.
I started hearing about a supergroup of Taylor Goldsmith of Dawes, John McCauley III of Deer Tick and Matt Vasquez of Delta Spirit when they performed at “MG+V” at SXSW this year in March. Both Dawes and Delta Spirit played Daytrotter Barnstormer tours (Dawes in October 2009 and July 4th 2010; Delta Spirit in April/May 2010). The guys hit a studio in Nashville last fall to lay down the tracks with Griffin Goldsmith (brother of Taylor, also of Dawes) on drums. The results of those sessions are going to be released in March 2011 under the moniker “Middle Brother” on Partisan Records.
In an interview with Mary Lucia on the Current in Minneapolis, Taylor said that the sophomore release from Dawes is already recorded and ready for release May of 2011. The delay of the release is so that they can release the album for Middle Brother ahead of it. All three bands (Dawes, Deer Tick and Delta Spirit) will go on tour in support of the Middle Brother release and everyone is going to play in each other’s sets. This sounds like one of those tours that people will talk about for years, frankly.
The pre-order for the album is up already and has CD ($12), vinyl ($15) and a limited-to-500 vinyl + 10″ bundle with tracks recorded at the sessions that didn’t make it to the album proper ($25). The vinyl releases also have mp3 and lossless downloads available with them.
One of the vivid memories I have of Daniela Gesundheit of Snowblink is of her standing on the Grand Old Opry-style stage in Green Island, IA during the first Barnstormer tour framed by twinkling strings of Christmas-tree lights– the small crowd armed with small brass bells to ring on cue. Her mellow ambient set was a departure from the mostly-rocking lineup of those shows, but her otherworldly naive charm seemed to dislodge even the most jaded PBR-fueled hipster from their folded arm vantage point. Her music was dew clinging to the small plants on the forest floor. The kind of stuff that faeries would be streaming from their Pandora accounts whilst updating their Facebook statuses.
Daniela and her small band were performing songs from her at-the-time self-released CD Long Live. Songs like “Rut and Nuzzle,” “Ambergris,” and “Stand Where a Fruit Tree Drops the Things It Doesn’t Need” from this album were standout songs I waited anxiously to hear these songs at each of the stops during the Barnstormer tours.
She announced yesterday that Long Live would be re-issued on Fire Records in Europe on November 8th on CD, MP3 and vinyl (yay!) in conjunction with a tour of Europe. Fire will release in the US and Canada in February. The new reissue gets new cover art, too and features the little boy from the “Ambergris” video (below). Long Live is an album I’ve enjoyed for over a year and its one that I always felt should get more exposure, so I hope that Fire can put some promotional support behind it. I plan on picking up the vinyl when it’s available.
Track Listing for Long Live:
1. Rut & Nuzzle
3. The Tired Bees
4. Stand Where A Fruit Tree Drops The Things It Doesn’t Need
6. Green to Gone
7. Bulb, For Later
8. Divining Rod
9. Sea Change
11. Heckling The Afterglow
12. This Is This
13. Go Deep (Fon Frank)
14. The Fish of Little Thoughts
15. The Haunt
Click Here to listen to “Rut and Nuzzle” from Long Live (with lyrics!) Click Here to listen to “Green to Gone” from Long Live (with lyrics!)
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)
Antibalas was formed in 1998 and modeled after Fela Kuti’s Africa 70 band and continues to maintain connections with members of Fela’s bands. In 2008 the band was involved in the off-Broadway and on-Broadway musical of Fela’s life titled Fela! The musical is based on the events of his life and particularly his politically motivated music career and oppression from the Nigerian government.
Antibalas’s influence from Fela Kuti extends further than just their afrobeat style, they also choose to make their music the platform for sharing their political views. No where is this more evident than their third album Who Is This America? which was released in 2004 on Ropeadope records. The band and label felt that their political and social statements on the album are as relevant today as they were during the Bush-era, post 9/11 period they were conceived in.
The re-issue of Who Is This America? will be on CD and digital download with a new bonus track “Money Talks” and with an iTunes-only track “Paz.” Notably, Ropadope is choosing not to release this album on vinyl. As luck would have it, Daptone Records released a vinyl version back in 2004 that seems to still be available on their site for $20 and has the “running man” cover artwork. Daptone also has Antibalas’s 2007 Anti- Records release Security on vinyl as well. Security was produced by John McEntire of Tortoise, incidentally. Ropeadope will have a special edition package that includes the CD, a download and a reprint of the “Running Man” teeshirt ($27.99). You can get just the teeshirt, too.
Click Here to download “Big Man” from Who Is This America?
Click Here to pre-order Who Is This America? from Ropadope.
Click Here to order the original (no bonus tracks) Who Is This America? 2 LP from Daptone.