Universal reissues Kanye’s 808s and Heartbreak on vinyl, rubbing their collective Mr. Burns hands together in glee
Sometimes I forget I’m following Kanye West on Twitter. Occasionally I’ll think to myself, “Hmm, haven’t heard anything from Kanye lately. I guess I must’ve finally decided to unfollow him late one drunken night” (because duh, why else would I make such a misinformed decision, unless under the influence of MIND-ALTERING CHEMICALS). Then lo! Hark! What this? An ALL CAPS rant from Kanye — most recently directed at Jimmy Kimmel — and I’m like “Oh yeah, I am still following this guy.” Well, Universal Music wants to make sure fans of good old-fashioned vinyl records never unfollow Kanye — in their hearts, I mean. Thusly, they’re giving Kanye’s 2008 album 808s and Heartbreak the ALL CAPS equivalent of the record release game: the vinyl reissue. Diamond-encrusted vinyl with previously unreleased tracks and a pull-out booklet with intro by Byron Coley? Nah, probably not. So in reality, it’s really more of a “some caps, some wingdings”-style reissue.
“WHY?” Perhaps you’re asking yourself this right now. “WHY ARE THEY REISSUING THIS ALBUM THAT CAME OUT FIVE YEARS AGO. IT’S NOT LIKE IT EVER WENT AWAY.” Well, because, ye of little faith, Universal wants your money. Nah, J/K! They want you to Respect the Classics, as is the name of their vinyl reissue campaign of releasing remastered versions of “iconic, genre-defining albums,” starting with the October 22 release of DMX’s It’s Dark and Hell Is Hot (gold vinyl, what) and Flesh of My Flesh Blood of My Blood (clear vinyl with blood splatters, whaaaaaaaaat I’m sorry excuse me, my hearing trumpet must be outta whack whaaaaat). The series will continue with releases from 50 Cent, Slick Rick, and Public Enemy this year. Yeezy’s album release is yet TBD, probably because it takes a while to gather all that silky silky unicorn hair that will be pressed into the 24 karat gold vinyl.
Learn 15 debatable vocabulary words AND read about the new Olan Mill LP, all by using this one weird trick!
There are so many cool, kinda necessary words that have no equivalent in English. Take German’s kummerspeck (literally, “grief bacon”), for example. It’s a word meant to describe emotional overeating! Or the Turkish language’s gumusserv, a word referring to moonlight shining on water. The poetry! The romance! Or Persian’s zhaghzhagh — FINALLY, an easy to use word to describe the sound made by teeth chattering from rage/cold. Either/or. Well, at least that’s according to some list I found on the internet. Hell, for all I know some guy made all these words up and is just sitting in front of his computer, rubbing his hands together and gleefully laughing, saying “Yes, yesssss, they believe my made up list! Hrigfashn!” (A Norwegian word to describe the glee one feels upon perpetrating an internet hoax.)
But when it comes to words we don’t have in English, the Welsh word Hiraeth is definitely one of the most evocative — it means “homesickness for a home to which you cannot return.” It’s also the title of British experimental composer and instrumentalist Alex Smalley’s forthcoming album under the Olan Mill moniker (with
Svitlana Samoylenko [Update: Svitlana is no longer in Olan Mill.]). Slated for a late October release on Australia’s rad Preservation label, Hiraeth is the follow-up to 2012’s critical darling Home, a record that garnered comparisons to Maurice Jarre and Vangelis. Hiraeth will be available on both CD and vinyl, with different artwork for each format. So listen to album track “Cultivator” below, and then Gifvalt! — a Lithuanian word for “buy that shit, yo.”
Matt Mondanile releases conceptual book-that-looks-like-an-LP by Title TK (Cory Arcangel, Alan Licht, Howie Chen) on New Images; your move, Beck Hansen!
Yup. It’s just what the headline says. Ducktails dude Matt Mondanile has released a ‘book that looks like a record” on his New Images Ltd. label. By a band that’s not really a “band” so much as three dudes that sat around and talked once.
For real. It’s called Rock$ and is literally “a transcription of a private conversation” between Alan Licht, Howie Chen, Cory Arcangel (collectively being referred to as Title TK).
Still not getting it? Here: have a look. This explains it all. It costs $30, by the way.
In related news, I just wrote, produced, and directed a Hollywood blockbuster film disguised as a news story. Something tells me Mondanile and I are both gonna be rich!
• New Images Ltd.: http://www.newimageslimited.com
I love Nils Frahm — firstly, because he (along with Keith Jarrett) has honorably spared me the tediousness of having to manually enter and edit complicated metadata tags often associated with pianists or classical music in general (I realize this is a very first-world problem), and secondly, because seeing him perform in concert never fails to be a breathtaking experience. Literally, Frahm has ensured the dropping down of jars from the ceiling mid-concert in order to steal our breath. The ultimate motive remains a mystery, but compliance is a worthwhile trade-off for watching the man do his thing, seemingly without effort.
Not quite as dastardly as stealing our breath, Frahm has been doing something else during these concerts, and over the course of two years: gathering potential pieces to include on his next album Spaces, set for release November 19 on Erased Tapes. Described by a press release as an “ode to the joy of live performance,” but straying from the convention of a traditional live album, Spaces was recorded in multiple locations and using different mediums, including old portable reel-to-reel recorders and cassette tape decks. A conscious decision to include takes that have people coughing (and other such show behavior) was not done out of a special appreciation for auditory phlegm, but for the purposes of capturing the whole experience and putting it to record.
A word from the Berliner himself on the subject:
What I love most about playing in front of people has something to do with a certain kind of energy exchange. The attention and appreciation of my audience feeds back into my playing. It really seems as if there is a true and equal give and take between performer and listener, making me aware of how much I depend on my audience. And since the audience is different every night, the music being played will differ too. Every space I performed in has its own magic and spirit.
01. An Aborted Beginning
03. Said And Done
04. Went Missing
06. Improvisation for Piano, Laughs, Coughs and a Cell Phone
08. For-Peter-Toilet Brushes-More
9. Over There, It’s Raining
11. Ross’s Harmonium
[Photo: Tracy Morter]
Brian DeGraw from Gang Gang Dance announces new solo album as bEEdEEgEE, which I already hate typing out!
Ahh, where you been at, Brooklyn art-noise-cum-top-40 scene? Feels like it’s been a while, doesn’t it? Especially if you work around here, where we generally pick up what bands like Gang Gang Dance have been puttin’ down in recent years. And now that everyone’s gotten a little more comfortable with their erstwhile secretive opinions that Animal Collective kinda sucks, it’s starting to seem more important than ever that we hear from those dudes from time to time.
So lookout, motherfuckers; here comes lead Gang Gang Dancer Brian DeGraw as an official “solo artist” to keep the dream alive. Yup, he recently announced that he’ll be releasing his debut solo album, SUM/ONE, under the name bEEdEEgEE on the 4AD label. Written and recorded “over the course of a year in his Woodstock studio, the W0RMB1N” and employing a few notable guest stars like Alexis Taylor (Hot Chip), Lovefoxxx (CSS), Lizzi Bougatsos (Gang Gang Dance), and Douglas Armour, I’ve been assured that the thing will be just chock-full of the “deep synth soundscapes” and “audacious pop moments” that we’ve all been missing in our pathetically un-art-damaged lives. What a relief! I’ve felt so goddamn sane and un-fucked-up for so long that I can’t even tell you…
Anyway, the record is set for release (on CD, vinyl, and digital) on December 3, after which good ol’ bEEdEEgEE (see, rolls off the tongue already, right?) will be making his live debut supporting none-other-than Animal Collective when they trek out on North American tour this winter. Who knows, he might even get to do a few headlining sets if everyone in Animal Collective gets sick again! :( Either way, check out the first single down below. Then be sure to share it on the blogosphere, just in case this whole Brooklyn noise thing blows up again. You never know!
01. Helium Anchor
02. Like Rain Man (feat. Lizzi Bougatsos)
03. Empty Vases (feat. Douglas Armour)
05. (F.U.T.D) Time of Waste (feat. Alexis Taylor and Lovefoxxx)
07. Flowers (feat. Lovefoxxx)
08. (intellectual property)
09. Quantum Poet Riddim
11.30.13 - Brooklyn, NY - Glasslands
12.01.13 - Washington, DC - 9:30 Club *
12.02.13 - Portland, ME - State Theatre *
12.04.13 - Royal Oak, MI - Royal Oak Music Hall *
12.05.13 - Covington, KY - Madison Theater *
12.06.13 - Cleveland, OH - House of Blues *
12.08.13 - Nashville, TN - Marathon Music Works *
* Animal Collective
Fis to release Preparations EP on Tri Angle, take seat at gorgeous Tri Angle dinner table with beautiful cornucopia
There are labels, and then there are families. Some musical artists sign to labels, but so what? All that means is they’re gonna put out your music. Guess that’s fine (for some people), but don’t you want more? Don’t you want a label that really cares? Merge isn’t going to bail you out from jail (NOTE: Merge is a wonderful label, but this is probably true). When you want a label, but what you really want is a family, there’s only one choice. That choice is Tri Angle.
Hence why New Zealand producer Fis is putting out his Preparations EP through the label on November 18. Since the EP will be his debut for the label, it’s also his entry into a beautiful family. They’ve already set out a place for him at the family table, the long one where they eat roast duck on holidays, the centerpiece a gorgeous cornucopia made by one of the label’s many children (probably Balam Acab). Preparations will be released in digital and limited-edition vinyl formats, because Tri Angle accepts any lifestyle you choose for yourself.
Listen to Preparations track “DMT Usher” below via the label’s SoundCloud. Once you’ve done that, please pen Tri Angle a letter. They miss you.
01. Magister Nunns
02. DMT Usher
03. Mildew Swoosh
04. CE Visions
Current 93 plan new release for early next year; David Tibet says, “The apocalypse is actually going to happen this time, I swear”
Alright, no one freak out, but FACT is reporting that Current 93 have a new record coming out February 8 of next year. It’s called I Am the Last of all The Field That Fell a title which, yeah, I know, is kinda murdery in that special-plan-for-this-world-perfect-mind-thundering-David Tibet-y kind of way. Beyond the date and title, there’s not much detail on the album just yet. Trust me, I understand going into the apocalypse with information so scant can seem a little intimidating. I mean, I have a wife and kids at home too (and I actually told my wife I’d pick up some organic milk on the way home so I’m double screwed if we all get consumed by a spontaneous lava flow or whatever), but please try to remain calm.
Pay no mind to the hooded figure that just handed me a package. He’s just here to drop off my advance copy of the book of Tibet’s lyrics, Sing Omega, that’s also coming out on February 8 of next year. That’s right, review copy, bitches! Even in the apocalypse, being a part of the liberal media has its perks. I also got some advance tickets to the Current 93 performance on the day that’s also on February 8 at London’s Union Chapel. To be honest though, I’m probably going to throw them up on StubHub or something. I’ve heard from an anonymous source close to Satan himself that the whole apocalypse thing will be full speed ahead by then, and the Union Chapel will be at the bottom of a crater and filled up with beasts whose taste for human flesh cannot be slaked. A Current 93 concert at the bottom of a crater combined with the opportunity to use the word “slaked” in a sentence? Yes please! Attending that concert while beset by unearthly beasts on every side? Thank you very much, sir, but I think I’m busy that night.
• Current 93: http://copticcat.com
People on a budget finally permitted to hear the decay of a nation with new Disintegration Loops CD-only box set
In the decade-plus since their release, William Basinski’s Disintegration Loops have become the artistic embodiment of the grief and transformational furor felt in the wake of 9/11, a status which is both burdensome and gratifying for their creator. As Basinski told TMT last year when asked about his now ubiquitous association with the tragedy:
It’s such a mixed blessing. It… I wish I never had to talk about 9/11 again, you know? But, you can’t ever forget it, and everything changed that day, the world…
I do feel like it was such an honor that was given to me, at a time when I was completely broke and didn’t really know what would happen next. I felt like I was somehow being given this incredible task. With the Disintegration Loops there came a whole new level of meaning that up until that day wasn’t part of it. Filming the last hour of daylight that night and bouncing it to the computer next day, pairing it with “dlp 1.1,” it became an elegy, and over the next weeks and months, seeing everyone in New York falling into their own disintegration loops — fear, terror, very odd ways — it felt like it had to be an elegy of some kind.
Around the time of this interview, Basinski was promoting the box set reissue of The Disintegration Loops. This 9-LP/5-CD behemoth includes a live performance DVD as well as a 148-page book chronicling September 11, 2001’s waning daylight. While no doubt exhaustive, the set is also expensive: a number of copies are still available at Temporary Residence for $225 (prepare to fork over even more on Discogs.) Thankfully, for those in need of some post-9/11 reflection in this post-2008 economy, The Disintegration Loops is being reissued in box set form again with everything except the vinyl. While this may not sit well with audiophiles, the $80 price tag should make this exquisite set accessible to more people. Plus, a portion of the profits will go to the National September 11 Memorial Museum, which will soon formally induct the loops into its collection. Preorder the set in anticipation of its November 12 release here.
Grab your parkas, your ski masks, and your little hand warmer things, friends, because Arbouretum are going on tour this winter and it’s gonna get hella cold. Imagine if Lance, that guy from your office who always turns the thermostat way down because he “runs hot,” was a band. The band you are imagining is Arbouretum. Shiver, right? Double shiver, even. I mean, I would imagine the fellahs in Arbouretum talk a little bit less about their mother-in-laws than Lance does, but the comparison’s pretty close. At any rate, they’ve definitely got one thing in common: the ambient temperature in the office park drops several degrees when they’re around. I bet you didn’t think doomy psych-inflected folk rock had the ability to actually effect the weather, did you?
Except for the first date in mid-November, Arbouretum are joined for the length of their winter jaunt by none other than the human puffy-coat himself, Cass McCombs. McCombs has an album of his own coming out pretty soon. It’s called Big Wheel and Others and it’s out October 15 on Domino. I’m telling you right now you’d better bundle up for this one. Seriously, I recommend layering. Watch Arbouretum’s video for the title track to this year’s Coming Out of the Fog below to get a sense of whether or not your parka is going to cut it. Honestly, it probably won’t.
11.16.13 - Baltimore , MD - Ottobar #
12.02.13 - Cambridge, MA - The Sinclair
12.03.13 - Montreal, QC - Il Motore
12.04.13 - Toronto, ON - Great hall on Queen Street
12.06.13 - Chicago, IL - Empty Bottle
12.07.13 - Louisville, KY - Zanzabar
12.08.13 - Nashville, TN - High Watt
12.09.13 - Atlanta GA - The Earl
12.12.13 - New York, NY - Bowery Ballroom
12.13.13 - Philadelphia, PA - Boot and Saddle
12.14.13 - Baltimore, MD - The Ottobar
# Wooden Shjips, Purling Hiss
From The Guardian:
Philip Chevron, who played guitar for the Pogues, has died at the age of 56. He had been treated for head and neck cancer in 2007 and was given a clean bill of health in April 2012. A new tumour appeared in August 2012, however, and was deemed inoperable. He died on Tuesday morning.
Chevron joined the Pogues following the release of their debut album, Red Roses for Me, initially on a temporary basis. He was a full-time member by the time they recorded their second album, Rum, Sodomy and the Lash. Although the Pogues’ songwriting was dominated by Shane MacGowan, Chevron contributed one of the band’s best-loved songs, Thousands Are Sailing.
• Philip Chevron: http://www.pogues.com/PastPogues/PChevron/PChevron.html