Hydra Head Records entering second stage of rehab
By Brendan Sudol on Feb 1 2013
Last September, after nearly 20 years of releasing some of the best in metal and its various related styles and subgenres, Hydra Head Records announced they were closing their doors. Truly a major loss for music fans, the label had to cease most of their operations in the face of financial difficulties due to the realities of running an independent record label and a rapidly changing music industry (I blame you kids and your downloading). In November, the label announced a rehab plan to hopefully raise enough funds to keep their back catalog available for the long haul.
Well, now it’s the new year and the next phase of their Financial Rehab Program is in effect. The label has acquired enough funding to roll out another series of rare and limited-edition releases. Highlights include a new t-shirt designed by label and Isis co-founder Aaron Turner, some (ab)used music gear Turner used in Greymachine and House of Low Culture, as well as some Isis vinyl rarities. Hurry and look between the couch cushions and under your mattress because a lot of this stuff is selling fast.
Unfortunately, it’s “[s]till highly unlikely” Hydra Head will be putting out any new material. In the meantime, the label is planning a large-scale repressing of items from their back catalog. For complete details, check out this blog entry on the Hydra Head site.
In addition to the re-releases, a few bands associated with the label are touring this Spring. Tourdates below.
Old Man Gloom (all dates w/ Converge):
02.10.13 - Auckland, New Zealand - Basement Bar
02.12.13 - Perth, Australia - Amplifier
02.13.13 - Adelaide, Australia - Fowlers
02.15.13 - Melbourne, Australia - Billboards
02.16.13 - Sydney, Australia - Manning Bar
02.17.13 - Brisbane, Australia - Hi Fi
02.19.13 - Shibuya, Japan - Club Quattro
02.20.13 - Imaike, Japan - Bottom Line
02.21.13 - Umeda, Japan – Akaso
02.06.13 - Charlotte, NC - Tremont Music Hall
02.07.13 - Chapel Hill, NC - Local 506
02.08.13 - Atlanta, GA - 529
02.09.13 - Savannah, GA - The Jinx
02.10.13 - Jacksonville, FL - Jack Rabbits
03.02.13 - Brooklyn, NY - Saint Vitus
05.23-26.13 - Baltimore, MD - Maryland Deathfest
• Hydra Head: http://www.hydrahead.com
RIP: Leroy "Sugarfoot" Bonner of The Ohio Players
By Shane Mack on Feb 1 2013
Leroy “Sugarfoot” Bonner, leader of the funk band the Ohio Players, has died at the age of 69. No cause of death has yet been reported.
The Ohio Players had seven Top 40 hits in the 1970s, including “Love Rollercoaster,” “Fire” and “Skin Tight,” and helped define a movement that included Parliament Funkadelic and Kool & the Gang. The band’s success stemmed partly from Bonner’s playfully commanding lead vocals and gusto.
• The Ohio Players: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ohio_Players
!!! announce new album, THR!!!ER (which is pronounced “Thr-Chk-Chk-Chk-Er” by those in the know)
By Dan Smart on Feb 1 2013
Jeez, I knew all the good band names were taken, but I guess it’s slim pickings with regards to album titles these days too. No, you’re not having a small stroke or anything. NYC dance punk granddads !!! have announced the April 30 release of their fifth album for Warp (and follow-up to 2010’s Strange Weather, Isn’t It?), and it is indeed titled THR!!!ER. Well, shit. I guess there’s probably no time like your fifth album to set the bar a little higher?
And speaking of doing that, guitarist Mario Andreoni seems to have no problem throwing down in his press release, not just with the likes of Michael Jackson, but with a whole slew of heavy hitters.
Over the course of many long van rides and post-coffee verbal riff sessions, Thriller didn’t merely come to represent the selling of a lot of records…it became synonymous with an artist(s)’ and/or genre(s)’ artistic high-watermark. INXS’ Kick is the Australian Thriller…Alanis’ Jagged Little Pill is the Canadian Thriller…Wham!’s Make It Big is the blow-dryer’s Thriller…every recording by the 13th Floor Elevators is the dosed-man’s Thriller…”Sister Ray” by the Velvet Underground is the Thriller of musical fever dreams. One day at the studio, Nic [Offer, vocalist] drew THR!!!ER on a napkin and I liked it…then we made our THR!!!ER.
I guess this isn’t going to be a terribly humble affair, huh? But then again, how much humility can you expect from a man who’s apparently apparently on a first name basis with Alanis Morissette? The press release also said that the bulk of it was recorded with Spoon drummer/badass Jim Eno, which I thought was really cool… but then it went on to say something about “tighter song structures” and “weirder sounds” and “unexpected changes,” and I just kinda fell asleep for a few hours. So, I hope it all turned out good for them, because it’s quittin’ time. Here comes the tracklist and trailer.
01. Even When the Water’s Cold
02. Get That Rhythm Right
03. One Girl/One Boy
04. Fine Fine Fine
07. Except Death
09. Station (Meet Me at The)
Atom™ readies HD on Raster-Noton, and no, you won’t need a Monster cable to listen to it
By Mike Reid on Feb 1 2013
A rare and oddly beautiful form of schizophrenia, known among the medical community as hypotensivelectroglitchbiodisintegration, has thankfully lessened its grip on the alias-almost-too-friendly German composer/producer Uwe Schmidt. Deferring to Wikipedia, Schmidt has apparently assumed more than 60 monikers over his roughly two-decade long musical career, but lately, and much to the dismay of those who gigglingly enjoyed his limited work as Candy Ballsak, he’s focused on releasing material through two names in particular: the explicitly latin-themed Señor Coconut, and Atom™, whose 2009 album Liedgut brought some welcome romanticism to the Chemnitz-based Raster-Noton label.
The R-N release of Liedgut’s sequel, Winterreise, was released just last year, and already, Atom™ has a new LP in the works, this time with some very special (is there any other kind?) guest contributions.
HD will be released on March 18, and it features aural appearances from Raster-Noton co-founder Alva Noto a.k.a. Carsten Nicolai, Chilean singer Jorge Gonzales, and Warp-resident Jamie Lidell, who offers vocals on the track, “I Love U.” The album itself consists of entirely new tracks, and basically new tracks — the latter of which refers to re-workings of recordings that date back to 2005. I’ll leave you with Schmidt’s own words regarding the album, and below that, listen to three HD teaser clips.
The first recordings for HD were made in 2005. Back then the album still carried another title which was Hard Disc Rock… The initial selection of songs for Hard Disc Rock was of course a very different one, and while the years passed by most of those songs which did not continue to please, were one by one replaced by newer compositions (in fact the track “Stop (Imperialist Pop)”, which entered the album around 2009, does contain a fragment of an Atom track from 1998 called “Hard Disc Rock (don’t stop)”.) All of the ‘early’ tracks for the later re-entitled HD album necessarily were subject to profound changes in music and words, and I can say that by the time around 2012 Hard Disc Rock had completely transformed into something else.
01. Pop HD
03. I Love U
04. The Sound of Decay
06. Riding the Void
07. Stop (Imperialist Pop)
08. My Generation
09. Ich bin meine Maschine
Iron and Wine’s sexy wraith-porn-themed new album Ghost on Ghost due in April
By Liz Louche on Feb 1 2013
Sam Beam’s quiet pensive dude project Iron and Wine is bringing sexy back (quietly, of course) on his upcoming album Ghost on Ghost. It’s a concept album about a sexy teen ghost who finds redemption in a surprising place: the ghost porn industry of California’s San Fernando Valley. (Just kidding. It’s not about that at all. PROBABLY.) Whatever it’s about, it’s due April 16 on Nonesuch here in the United States. For Europe, Japan, Ghost California, Australia and New Zealand, 4AD is putting this thing out on April 15.
Produced by longtime Beam collaborator Brian Deck (Modest Mouse, Califone, Fruit Bats), Ghost on Ghost features the single “Lovers’ Revolution.” You can preview the track below and envision yourself drenched in sweat, sipping juleps with Sam Beam as he sings you a merry New Orleans-style song about sad things, laughing the night away as the twilight casts a haze of nostalgia and lost dreams over Bourbon Street. Who knows? Maybe that dream will even become a reality. Tourdates are in the works.
Ghost on Ghost tracklisting:
01. Caught in the Briars
02. The Desert Babbler
04. Low Light Buddy of Mine
05. Graces for Saints and Ramblers
06. Grass Windows
07. Singers and the Endless Song
08. Sundown (Back in the Briars)
09. Winter Prayers
10. New Mexico’s No Breeze
11. Lovers’ Revolution
12. Baby Center Stage