De Stijl reissues New Zealand singer-songerwriter Peter Jefferies’ 1990 Xpressway solo dazzler

De Stijl reissues New Zealand singer-songerwriter Peter Jefferies' 1990 Xpressway solo dazzler

Take heed, fans of obscure New Zealand singer-songwriter pop gems! You too, people who just straight up like being bummed out! Lasso your cat and your rainfall and your finest tea/malt liquor and find a window to cozy up to/wistfully stare out of! Because the fine folks over at De Stijl are reissuing The Last Great Challenge in a Dull World, the fantastic, and fantastically overlooked, 1990 solo debut by Peter Jefferies of seminal New Zealand post-punk band Nocturnal Projections. The album, which has been out of print since the mid-90s, comes back to life on June 4.

Initially released as a cassette by the New Zealand label Xpressway and later picked up and given CD/LP release by Chicago’s Ajax label, the album has since gone to that great SoundCloud in the sky (whatever that means). Yet music fans have not forgotten; Cat Power has covered Jefferies (see below), as has Amanda Palmer (see somewhere else). And with the De Stijl reissue, fans get two bonus songs from a Jefferies 7-inch, “The Fate of the Human Carbine” and “Catapult.”

Peter Jefferies left professional music in 2002 after a slew of releases with Nocturnal Projections and five solo albums. He now teaches drums, music composition, and recording technology at a high school in New Plymouth, New Zealand. So, if in addition to liking sad music and antipodean singer-songwriters, you’re also one of those weirdos who pretends to be a teenager in order to live that timeless dream of going to high school to hang out with teen girls and cool teachers long after you’re free of its hellish halls, well, there’s that info for you.

• De Stijl:


Recently, I was at a wishing well. You know, hanging out at a wishing well, just like people do on a Saturday or Sunday. Since it was a, you know, wishing well, I threw a quarter in and made a wish. The same wish I always make: that Big Freedia would go on tour with The Postal Service.


As absolutely insane and amazing as it sounds, bounce MC Big Freedia is going on tour with the recently-reunited Postal Service this July. This means that thousands of misty-eyed, sweater-wearing (yes, even in the summer) folk will face a phalanx of shaking butts and the mighty cry of “ASS EVERYWHERE ASS EVERYWHERE ASS EVERYWHERE” this summer. I doubt anything better is happening all year.

Here’s how Freedia herself puts it: “I’m so excited to open shows with The Postal Service. I love being put with artists that people wouldn’t expect — and they are raw as hell.” When I die, put that on my tombstone. “Eric Nagurney 1987-2052 ‘[The Postal Service] are raw as hell’ - Big Freedia”

Big Freedia + The Postal Service dates:

07.16.13 - Vancouver, BC - Rogers Arena
07.17.13 - Portland, OR - Rose Garden Arena
07.18.13 - Seattle, WA - Key Arena
07.20.13 - Santa Barbara, CA - Santa Barbara Bowl
07.21.13 - San Diego, CA - SDSU Open Air Theatre
07.23.13 - Los Angeles, CA - Greek Theatre
07.26.13 - Berkeley, CA - Greek Theatre Berkeley

• Big Freedia:
• Postal Service:

RIP: Jeff Hanneman, Slayer guitarist

From Billboard:

Slayer guitarist and founding member Jeff Hanneman died earlier today of liver failure. He was 49.

The band’s longtime publicist issued the following statement today:

“Slayer is devastated to inform that their bandmate and brother, Jeff Hanneman, passed away at about 11AM this morning near his Southern California home. He was 49. Hanneman was in an area hospital when he suffered liver failure. He is survived by his wife Kathy, his sister Kathy and his brothers Michael and Larry, and will be sorely missed.”

Hanneman co-founded the thrash metal greats with Kerry King in 1981; their breakthrough came in 1986 with the landmark album “Reign in Blood.” Hanneman wrote or co-wrote the set’s standout tracks, “Angel of Death” and “Raining Blood.”

• Slayer:

Ende Tymes doing fundraiser for May festival: Aaron Dilloway, Macronympha, Crank Sturgeon, Pulse Emitter, Bhob Rainey, Andy Ortmann, more

As John spake it in the holy book of Revelation, chapter one, verse seven, “Look, it is coming with the clouds, and every eye will see it; and all peoples on earth will mourn because of the Ende Tymes Festival. So shall it be! Amen.” And so this prophecy shall be fulfilled, once again, for the third time, May 24-26.

But the miraculous advent of Aaron Dilloway, Crank Sturgeon, Work/Death, and countless other noisemakers will require much prayer, conviction, and tithing into the festival’s crowdsourcing fundraiser at IndieGoGo. Thou hast only four days left to contribute and reap the precious swag and benefits of timely responders! Make haste! So that these apostles of harsh sound may be compensated fairly!

Doth thou readers tire of our Biblical humor at every mention of this festival? Then thou art a stick in the mud! Haters doth hate.

• Ende Tymes:
• Ende Tymes Fundraiser:…

Drag City reissuing Royal Trux’s 3-Song EP in June, could not be convinced to rename it

There seem to be two schools of thought concerning Royal Trux. One sees Accelerator (Drag City, 1998) as RT’s magnum opus, the long-awaited distillation of the heroin-damaged chaos that marked their earlier work; the other sees it as an album eight years past their prime, a perversely muted affair in comparison to the monomaniacal purity of 1990’s Twin Infinitives.

Regardless of the poison you pick — and don’t be fooled, it’s exactly that — you’re guaranteed a generous helping of hydrochloric substance. Royal Trux could always be counted on to provide an essence of something altogether broken, whole, dead, and alive all at once. Their sound? A nocturnal, Stooges-like mess of broken glass, smog, motor-oil, and frayed nerves. If Twin Infinitives was an exquisite corpse of shattered parts — the result of a monstrous structure collapsed from unbearable perversity — Accelerator was the sound of putting the Humpty Dumpty back together again. In the two records one can find both poles of the Royal Trux spectrum, a sort of diptych of their delightfully grotesque legacy.

Hanging somewhere in the void is everything else the band recorded, which includes 98’s 3-Song EP. After Accelerator’s unexpectedly warm reception, a tour was soon scheduled. This entailed assembling a full-fledged band, one made up of many Drag City players, most notably bassist David Pajo. After arriving at Royal Trux’s Virginia ranch for rehearsal, the newly formed band was hurriedly prepared for the recording of a new EP. The end result was the 3-Song EP, a relatively straightforward, proggy, and low-end heavy set of songs; which didn’t make them any less intoxicating, mind you. After all, it was still Royal Trux, for fuck’s sake.

The 3-Song EP has been rather difficult to track down as of late, being out of print for almost a decade. But! Drag City (swooping in to save the day) has been unearthing the Royal Trux archive piece by piece, and the next step will be reissuing the 3-Song EP on June 18.

And if you don’t already own the first few albums (as well as Accelerator) don’t worry, everything is going to be okay; you can still rectify your impoverished situation by picking them up at the Drag City store.

• Drag City:

Flying Lotus releases his newsworthy bowels: a jazz album, Brainfeeder compilation, and Captain Murphy tape are all in the works

So clear is the influence that when Flying Lotus says he’s on his “jazz shit,” and that he’s currently “doing a lot of jazz stuff,” the inclination is to sarcastically respond, “Well nooooooooooooooooo kidding,” acknowledging that his previous three albums were noticeably tinged by the genre, and of course, that he’s a relation of the Coltrane family. For a filmic analogy, it’d be like if director Michael Bay elucidated as to his “explosion” plans, and talked about how he’s currently “doing a lot of explosions.” Bay would then release his personal, feature-length version of the Robot Chicken parody, and everyone would be slightly relieved at this final and total indulgence of what is so clearly his obsession.

On a much more refined note, and expanding on now-confirmed rumors of working in the studio with jazz legend Herbie Hancock, Flying Lotus does appear to be working on a bonafide… something — possibly a jazz album. Here’s the relevant quotation from Steven Ellison himself:

Right now, I’m on my jazz shit, man. I’m doing a lot of jazz stuff. We’re trying to make something that’s kind of a geek album. There are crazy time signatures and really intense playing, just because we want to go there. We want to play really fast. It’s gonna be fun, man… At the moment, there’s a lot of people involved.

No, please, elevate my interest even further, Mr. Ellison.

There’s also a Brainfeeder compilation in the works, celebrating five years since the label’s inception, and a tape from Captain Murphy (Ellison’s rapping persona), featuring beats from Madlib, Hudson Mohawke, and Jeremiah Jae. Additionally, Apocalypse from Thundercat, which was produced by Flying Lotus, will be released on July 9. All of this looking forward can’t be good for the neck…

• Flying Lotus:
• Brainfeeder:


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