Digitalis’ reissue of the amazing UK duo Leven Signs’ only release opens stargate to alternate, cooler past/future

Digitalis' reissue of the amazing UK duo Leven Signs' only release opens stargate to alternate, cooler past/future http://www.tinymixtapes.com/sites/default/files/1302/news-13-02-leven-signs.jpg

Forgotten progenitors of weirdo avant garde electropop and most Googleable band ever Leven Signs are getting some long overdue attention from the good people over at Digitalis. Like almost 30 years overdue. (And seriously, if you Google this band, you get like 10 exact results, and only one is inexplicably for an iPhone 4 case.) In 1985, the experimental UK duo of Peter Karkut and Maggie Turner released their one and only album Hemp Is Here as a cassette on Unlikely Records and as a vinyl LP on Cordelia. And then, like a shifting, shimmering dream of gamelan-studded, organ-washed, minimal electronica from an alternate future, it was gone. Gone from the pressing plant, gone from the wherever tapes are made. Gone from the collective consciousness of post-punk lovers everywhere.

Until an undisclosed date in February, when Digitalis gives Leven Signs a vinyl reissue. The phrase “before their time” gets tossed around a lot, but the mysterious and lovely Leven Signs should stir the hearts of the same people freaking out about the likes of Peaking Lights or Fabulous Diamonds. That sorta thing. Check out the track “Prague Spring” below:

• Digitalis: http://www.digitalisindustries.com/music

Maria Minerva and a pink wig release video for forthcoming EP Bless

We here at Tiny Mix Tapes seem to be writing about Maria Minerva pretty frequently over the past few months. We talked to her late last year, in January of this year we reviewed her collaborative album with LA Vampires, and of course she put out the wonderful Will Happiness Find Me? last year (TMT Review). She’s had a pretty busy year so far and it’s about to get busier.

On April 2, Not Not Fun offshoot 100% Silk will be releasing her new EP Bless. Compared to most of the songs on Will Happiness Find Me? the EP’s lead cut, “Black Magick,” is a little (and I mean “a little”) less hazy with the drums higher in the mix, and a bouncy, synthesized electro bassline pulsing throughout the song. It’s catchy.

Alice Cohen directed a video for “Black Magick” that features a public access meets Halloween-store-in-the-mall aesthetic with healthy dashes of surrealism and collage thrown in for good measure. The video has a sense of humor about itself and is definitely worth the watch:

Not bad, eh? Here is the complete Bless tracklist:

01. Black Magick
02. Space 4 U
03. Symbol Of My Pleasure [Form Of My Pain]
04. Soul Searchin
05. Black Magick (Lady Blacktronika’s Garage Trip Mix)

In addition to the new record, Ms. Minerva is doing some globetrotting. So far she has dates lined up throughout February and into March in enough places that she’ll probably need a new passport.

02.05.13 - Brighton, UK - Green Door
02.06.13 - Manchester, UK - Kraak Space
02.07.13 - London, UK - Shacklewell Arms
02.08.13 - Berlin, Germany - Berghain Kantine
02.09.13 - Stockholm, Sweden - Sodra Teatern
02.12.13 - Geneva, Switzerland - Ecurie de L’ilot
02.13.13 - St. Gallen, Switzerland - Palace
02.14.13 - Strasbourg, France - Strasbourg Museums Auditorium
02.21.13 - Jerusalem, Israel - Uganda
02.22.13 - Tel Aviv, Israel - Levontin7
02.26.13 - New York, NY - The New Museum (DJ Set)
03.02.13 - Brooklyn, NY - 285 Kent*
03.14-17.13 - Austin, TX - SXSW

* 100% Silk Allstars party feat. Octo Octa, Pharaohs, Magic Touch

• Maria Minerva: http://www.facebook.com/mariaminervamusic
• 100% Silk: http://www.listentosilk.com

RIP: Reg Presley, frontman of The Troggs

From WENN:

The Troggs frontman Reg Presley has died a year after retiring from music to concentrate on battling lung cancer.

The Wild Thing hitmaker, 71, died at his home in Andover, England on Monday, surrounded by his family.

The rocker’s daughter Karen tells WENN, “He passed away peacefully at home and myself, my brother and our mother were with him. We’re absolutely heartbroken.”

• The Troggs: http://www.my-generation.org.uk/Troggs

Drag City to reissue Harmony Korine’s 1998 first novel. “It’s about a race war and it happens in Florida.”

Harmony Korine, Nashville native and writer/director of the white trash cult-classic film Gummo, penned a sort-of novel back in 1998 entitled A Crack-Up at the Race Riots. He originally plugged the book to David Letterman, who had taken an interest in Korine as a regular goofy guest since his first visit promoting Kids, and described the book as… “It’s about a race war and it happens in Florida. And the Jewish people sit in trees. And the black people are run by M.C. Hammer. And the whites are run by Vanilla Ice. I wanted to write the Great American Choose Your Own Adventure novel.”

Although you can still get the book on Amazon, Drag City is reissuing it for those of us unwilling to pay $70+ for a book, and on April 16, you can own the second edition of this bizarre compilation of print, photographs, drawings, news clippings, handwriting, poetry, and clip art for a reasonable price.

The book’s release will closely coincide with the theatrical release of Korine’s latest exploitation of sub-culture, Spring Breakers, a film which, due to its star-studded cast and viral marketing, may accidentally earn money at the box-office from ticket buyers who misunderstand the stylish irony and instead watch for the bikinis and beach MTV atmosphere.

• Harmony Korine: http://www.harmony-korine.com
• Drag City: http://www.dragcity.com

The Twilight Sad to tour the US this spring in order to raise awareness about US spring tours

On November 20 of last year, while everyone in America was busy pre-cooking their spectacular Thanksgiving dinners and not reading music websites for news concerning UK bummer-core bands, FatCat Records quietly released a remixed version of the UK bummer-core band The Twilight Sad’s saddest album to date, No One Can Ever Know. The collection, unfussily titled No One Can Ever Know - The Remixes, featured, you guessed it, “takes on cuts from The Twilight Sad’s acclaimed recent album No One Can Ever Know by established acts such as Liars, Tom Furse of The Horrors, and Com Truise.” How totally unsurprising! And, at the same time, utterly surprising!

Anyway, since an entire continent was not paying attention at the time, the band has announced that they’re coming over to the US this spring (a notoriously slow news season) as a “stripped back 3-piece” to support that remix album… and, I guess, the album it was remixed from… and, I guess, the band Frightened Rabbit, with whom they’ll be touring. No, seriously; they really did “announce” it. Here’s the announcement:

We’re very happy to announce that we will be supporting our good friends Frightened Rabbit on their West Coast dates in North America. During a night in the pub with FR we both agreed we’d love to tour with each other again and they suggested we come do some shows with them as a stripped back 3-piece which they have seen us do back home in Scotland many times before. We agreed, so that’s what we’re doing. These stripped back shows will give people in North America the opportunity to see the band in a different way. We’re hoping it will showcase how important our songwriting process is and having a good song to begin with before adding the production is to our band.

I hope for the band’s sake that none of these dates interfere with America’s Downton Abbey schedule. Because I don’t know about you, but I’ve only got room for so many UK bummers.

03.08.13 - Seattle, WA - Showbox *
03.09.13 - Portland, OR - Hawthorne Theatre *
03.11.13 - San Francisco, CA - The Fillmore *
03.12.13 - Solana Beach, CA - Belly Up *
03.13.13 - Los Angeles, CA - Music Box / Fonda *
03.18.13 - Denver, CO - Gothic Theatre *
03.19.13 - Lincoln, NE - Bourbon Theatre *
03.21.13 - Minneapolis, MN - Varsity Theater *
03.22.13 - Milwaukee, WI - Pabst Theater *
03.23.13 - Chicago, IL - Riviera Theatre *
03.24.13 - Nashville, TN - 3rd & Lindsley*
03.26.13 - Cincinnati, OH - Bogarts*
03.27.13 - Louisville, KY - Headliners Music Hall*

* Frightened Rabbit

No One Can Ever Know - The Remixes tracklisting:

01. Sick (Brokenchord Remix)
02. Sick (Com Truise Remix)
03. Nil (Liars Remix)
04. Not Sleeping (Tom Furse Dub mix)
05. Alphabet (Instrumental) (JD Twitch/ Optimo Remix)
06. Not Sleeping (Warsnare Remix)
07. Nil (Breton Remix)
08. Alphabet (Ambassadeurs Remix)
09. Sick (Brokenchord Remix 2)

• The Twilight Sad: http://thetwilightsad.com
• FatCat: http://fat-cat.co.uk

RIP: Cecil Womack, R&B singer

From Spinner:

R&B singer Cecil Womack has died at the age of 65.

According to Soul-Source, Womack was living with wife and musical partner Linda Womack in Africa when he passed away on Friday, Jan. 31.

He was the brother of Bobby Womack and started out in a gospel group singing with him and their other brothers, Harry, Friendly and Curtis. Sam Cooke spotted them and changed the group’s name to the Valentinos.

Cecil was also a producer and writer, and wrote songs for Teddy Pendergrass, Patti LaBelle, and Motown’s Mary Wells, his first wife.

• Zekuumba Zekkariyas: http://www.zekenlightkingdom.com

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