Constellation Records get Fragile with new 3LP sets

Constellation Records get Fragile with new 3LP sets http://www.tinymixtapes.com/sites/default/files/MF01CDcover573.jpg

If I were forced (or simply asked) to list record labels that I consider to be the most consistent and loyal to the craft that they represent, along with an all-around pleasing aesthetic and a back catalog that has true staying power, Constellation would surely be placed toward the top of that list. Being one of the top-notch labels out there, the Canadian mainstay has and always will throw out excellent records, never with a singular distinct sound but always interesting to the ear and head.

That doesn’t change with the next release, or should I say releases? Musique Fragile, a running compilation of three albums from three different artists, shows the label expanding into a whole different territory of physical media. The set features full-length albums from Les Momies De Palerme, Nick Kuepfer, and Khôra, all nestled into one visually stimulating package that can be snagged on 180-gram vinyl or CD. All you package-heads are probably gonna want to swing for the vinyl run in order to grab the three 12-inch screen-printed jackets for each release that are all delicately housed in a cardboard sleeve. If it sounds fancy, it’s because it probably is. Oh, and did I also mention that this is going to be a continuing series? Well now I did.

Treat your senses to some bliss by pre-ordering yourself a copy of Musique Fragile Vol. 1. Check out a track too at the Chocolate Grinder.

• Constellation: http://cstrecords.com

RIP: Ari Up of The Slits

From John Lydon’s website:

John and Nora have asked us to let everyone know that Nora’s daughter Arianna (aka Ari-Up) died today (Wednesday, October 20th) after a serious illness. She will be sadly missed.

Everyone at JohnLydon.com and PiLofficial.Com would like to pass on their heartfelt condolences to John, Nora and family.

• The Slits: http://www.myspace.com/theslits

RIP: Marion Brown, avant-garde jazz saxophonist

From The Washington Post:

Avant-garde jazz saxophonist and ethnomusicologist Marion Brown passed away recently. He performed on John Coltrane’s album “Ascension” and has a deep, forward-thinking discography of his own. Brown was also a professor at schools including Amherst and Brandeis.

• Marion Brown: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Marion_Brown

Message from the law: New Sic Alps album Napa Asylum on Drag City in January

You may have noticed that you haven’t heard much from Sic Alps this past year. Last December, they were on top of the world — after releasing a 7-inch on Slumberland in early fall, they welcomed the holiday season on a tour alongside Magik Markers (solving the question of X-Mas gifts with a noisy 12-inch split on Yik Yak). Better yet, they began 2010 with a handful of dates supporting Sonic Youth. And then they were never heard from again… (except some shows scattered here and there since the end of their European tour in June).

But lo! These boys aren’t in your fancy corporate studio, but they are back! Drag City recently made the victorious announcement of a forthcoming LP from Sic Alps, entitled Napa Asylum. As per usual, the new tracks were recorded in a basement on an 8-track, and according to the band, detail “re-incarnation, magic, and schizophrenia” — themes always welcome from the dank underground of a bandmate’s house. The illustrious follow-up to U.S. EZ is set for release January 25. Early reports sound promising.

• Sic Alps: http://sicalps.com
• Drag City: http://www.dragcity.com

Flaming Lips to play The Soft Bulletin at New Years Eve show (and by “play” I mean “trigger with a bunch of buttons”)

The last time I saw The Flaming Lips, they kicked it off strong with “Race for the Prize,” the opening volley of their 1999 masterstroke The Soft Bulletin. Everyone went nuts. There was confetti. There were balloons. There was, you know, plenty of weed. It felt like a 2076 New Years Eve party on Mars or something. And yet, when that tune was over, I couldn’t help but feel strangely upset that Coyne and his lads didn’t steamroll right into track two with “A Spoonful Weighs a Ton.” The show was still a blast and everything, but as the setlist wore on and nary another track from that record appeared, it became apparent that I wasn’t going to hear the band tear through “The Gash” live anytime soon. I was bummed.

Well, consider that bummer rectified. On their Twitter, the band just dropped the bomb that they are planning to perform The Soft Bulletin on December 31 in their home town of Oklahoma City! Which venue? Who cares! When are tickets on sale? Who knows! Ah, the magic of Twitter. I guess we’ll all have to stay tuned.

And hey, if a hazardous winter-time road-trip to scenic Oklahoma doesn’t sound like your trip (particularly if you don’t live in the U S of A) don’t forget that the Lips are also slated to play The Soft Bulletin in its entirety next July 1 at London’s Alexandra Palace as part of ATP’s “Don’t Look Back” concert series (TMT News). Whichever show you choose, rest assured that you’ve still got plenty of time to practice standing-up and saying “yeah.”

• The Flaming Lips: http://www.flaminglips.com
• ATP Don’t Look Back: http://www.dontlookbackconcerts.com

1,2,3 sign to Frenchkiss Records; what, was every other band name taken?

Apparently it’s getting easier and easier to sign to a record label these days. Not only have 1,2,3 only been together for less than a year, but they also have the worst band name in recent memory, if not all of history. Still, the Pittsburgh duo must be doing something right, because Frenchkiss Records have snapped them up and will be releasing their debut album sometime next year.

For now, 1,2,3 are set to start recording the album in New York City this fall, and they have a 7-inch single for “Little Cure” coming out October 25 via Chess Club Records. They’ll also be getting bloggers excited at CMJ tomorrow, October 21, at the Neon Gold/Chess Club showcase at the Public Assembly in Brooklyn.

• 1,2,3: http://www.myspace.com/1comma2comma3
• Frenchkiss: http://www.frenchkissrecords.com
• Chess Club: http://www.chessclubrecords.co.uk

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