Newsletter Archive

GULLS ALWAYS DO THEIR BEST

ello

Last week’s summer sloth has been somewhat redeemed through spirited in-shop DIY / flatpack assembly that truth be told, isn’t all that impressive or exciting but if we don’t tell you who THE FUCK are we gonna tell?

We’ve got a nice shelf of BOOKS on sale now, we’ll get them all up on the website pronto but come by the shop for a gander. Also worth getting off your deckchair for, we’ve put out another DOD of mixed-up second hand business. Mostly post-punk / 80s experimental business, some posh noise LPs and some other lumped and lauded nuggets. Good shit within!

ALSO we are staying open late tonight, Friday 5th July, having drinks and nurturing sun burns from 6pm till 2330 or so - music from mates Elle, Claire, Gonz and Conrad. Summer will be gone before we know it folks! 

Crazy stuff finally arriving from all over the globe this week. All you tape crackers are especially blessed - with some micro-edition cassettes of mega-clout pulling in…

SMELLY FEET
LEFT ODOURS
INDEPENDENT WOMAN | CS | £9.99

Stop what you're doing! C60 reissue of Left Odours, an extremely rare solo album/compilation of strange, sardonic, demolished folk/DIY from NZ crackpot-visionary Brent Hayward in his Smelly Feet guise, featuring an array of otherwise unreleased material. 

If you're familiar with Hayward it's most likely via The Kiwi Animal (a duo with Julie Cooper), whose beautiful, austere, experimental folkways are venerated round ours, or maybe his stint in Wellington punk outfit Shoes This High (exhumed/championed decades later by Siltbreeze). Smelly Feet, whose main recorded output consisted of three self-released singles all put out in '81, has a more whimsical, private, provisional feel, songs cohering and unravelling when you least expect, but still high on the pop narcotic - think Pip Proud, Bing Selfish, Alastair Galbraith in songwriter mode, Itchy Bugger...all the good stuff! You'll quickly have your own favourites, but take it from us, 'Cadillac', 'Fashion Street' and the oddly poignant 'Pass Me The Rubbish Bag I Want To Be Sick' are bona fide goatfucking genius. 

"Smelly Feet is coming to your town soon. Smelly Feet is a person/band Brent - formerly with Shoes This High. Smelly Feet is travelling the country selling his self-produced single; with the hand battered, fold out, xerox and felt tip cover. This record stinks, metaphorically speaking- of course! Images of death and decay, festured [sic] toes and bloated bodies sloth rampantly over the landscape of ambient untuned guitar on the main course - O.H.M.S.

“I asked Smelly Feet about his guitar turning, thinking he might have swapped the strings around. What really happened was ‘I couldn’t tune the guitar in the studio at the time, and I didn’t want them thinking I was a jerk so I just played it anyway.’

“Smelly Feet is trying to do what hasn’t been done and not copying what is happening in the UK or the US, ike so many other bands. The single is sombre and depressive but his new songs are more humorous.

“‘Its easy to say everything is fucked, and point the finger, but sooner or later you have to look at yourself. You don’t have to stay in the same hole, you can always crawl to another.’”

Edition of 50 tapes, including newsprint inlay and a xerox of the inkie article quoted above, and now sold out at source… seriously, don't miss this stinkin' slice of sweet, scabrous, sub-underground pop nirvana!!!
 

GENERAL STRIKE
DANGER IN PARADISE
STAUBGOLD | LP | £19.99

Finally available again - Steve Beresford and David Toop’s inimitable, emphatically dubwise, deep-sea-diving masterpiece, Danger In Paradise. I always think of DIP as a reggae album, but for all its thiiiick basslines and reverbs, in essence it’s a bizarre hybrid of exotica, art-pop and jazz (Lol Coxhill lends his sax appeal to readings of Sun Ra’s ‘Interplanetary Music’ and ‘We Travel The Spaceways’), all collaged and smeared together by Beresford and an uncredited David 'Flying Lizards' Cunningham’s ingenious tape and synthesiser treatments. It’s all over the place, but it hangs together perfectly, whether nailing Vivien Goldman/Brenda Ray-ish bedsit pop (the sleepy-eyed but swaggering, Dawn Roberts-sung opener ‘My Other Body’) or, on the mighty ‘Sea Hunt’, sounding Lee Perry tearing chunks out of The Shadows. Originally released on tape by Touch in '84, it was issued on vinyl for the first time in 2012 by Staubgold, and quickly went out of print...dankes all-round for this spick n span '19 re-press. 

MALVERN BRUME
EXHAUST TRAILS
INFANT TREE | CS | £6.99


New decaying kosmische spools from the bedroom of local seer Brume... Marble-rattling, synth stabbing works-for-industry Exhaust Trails takes us on a more melodic slant than previous MB haunts. Maybe melodic isn’t the right word, but it’s as if the NYC ambient school (K. Leimer / Marc Barreca etc) took a field trip across the pond and got dusted down in all the car-fart and truck-belch of central London. For all the playful, pathfinder synthesis that takes the lead, there’s a sorta agoraphobic atmosphere that hangs thick in the air throughout the whole 40 minutes or so, with delay units commanding and contorting an array of bric-a-brac powered sound design in the background. A real development of an already singular sound. To have such quality music / art so humbly documented and disseminated is rare these days, and properly exciting. 
LES RALLIZES DENUDES + BE
THERE'S NO HEAVEN LIKE HELL
IDOL / ALTERNATIVE FOX | 2LP | £22.99 

Psycho electronic whirlwind rescued from 1976 - Horacio Vaggione and Eduardo Polonio’s maiden voyage before becoming seasoned synth nutters ( Vaggione’s “La Maquina De Cantar” and Polonio’s “Acacia La Mañana” WELL worth a gander).

In perfect cadence with the bustling, blossoming coral reef sleeve, “Viaje” is a vivid, glistening electronic ecosystem that could go head to head with all of the we-are-not-worthy astral synth spooling of all the other finest Creel Pone’d gear (Jack Tamul / Jean Hoyoux / Michael Lobel ++) that evolves with an impulsive, at times aggressive balance of improvisation / composition.

The three long-form pieces see melodies rapidly sprouting and developing in the spaces between the sprawling synthesiser tones, like plants amidst the fissures in a rock, the sonic void rapidly overflowing to shattering what anyone would think to be the limitations of the sonic spectrum!

I guess in that sense it has the properties of a noise record, all the dense, electronic landscaping and psychedelia that escalates into climactic studio pile-ups (easy lads!!) subsiding and leaving you with more space than you ever knew existed, like you’ve just realised you are trapped in a cave that is the size of the earth. Help!!

Nowt banal or bearded about this planet crashing summer scrambler. MENTAL.

CIRCAEA 
THE BRIDGE OF DREAMS

FARAWAY PRESS | LP | £16.99
 
Lush, poetical, high-romantic interfusings of mind and landscape from Tom James Scott (piano), Andrew Chalk (arrangements) and new foil Ecka Mordecai (cello). Mordecai’s plangent strings bring a whole new energy and colour-palette to Chalk/Scott’s well-trodden ethereal terrain, both reinforcing and revitalising it, and while there’s shortage of the wise ambient passivity we expect from and adore in all Faraway Press offerings, there are also moves towards more of a muscular, quicksilver chamber-trio dynamic - see ’Butterflies’, with Mordecai’s volatile bowed tones crescendoing across a backdrop of lush lunar synth drones and carefully portioned minor-key chords. Where in the past Chalk and Scott have typically favoured amorphous, almost vaporous compositional structures, and an emotional inscrutability that sometimes borders on constipation(!), Circaea’s pieces are relatively open, expressive, and not averse to linear narrative - a track like ‘Mirages’, for instance, combines brooding atmosphere with subtle rhythmic momentum/uplift in a manner that is positively cinematic. But not too cinematic, don’t worry…a sense of mystery and deep English reserve still prevails.
 
DEATH IS NOT THE END
BRISTOL PIRATES
DEATH IS NOT THE END | CS | £8.99

Cut ups of 80s/90s Bristol Pirate Radio broadcast, amazing snapshots that capture the spirit of the city through advertisements, phone-ins, hip hop, jungle, dancehall, house, dub + + ....SO good. 

“Smithies is the one - the place you have to come, the steak is nice, the chicken is nice, it’s Jamaican spice - down at Smithies! 126 Cheltenham Road, Telephone 241452”

ONLY BROUGHT ONE FORMAL SHIRT

Heatwave! Businesslunch! 

We’ve been working hard if working hard is threatening to paint walls, budget furniture shopping and working on a theory based around the axis of cool / lame which Sanjay has been developing in his spare time.

If Grandad could see me now..

Maintaining focus, some dead gid stuff showing up. Haven’t had THE BUZZ outta a mail-out as much as this one in wee while, so hopefully it should lift some sweaty spirits amidst your commute to/from HELL. Bleugh!!! 
Also some timely restocks in - that REQ double cassette is back on a second edition, the lost Israeli wildcard that apparently loads of people were waiting for - Amnon Raviv's "Mirror" and that garden-shed sheathed SCREAMER comp on Kashual Plastik, "No Order In Destiny".
See below!

LC xx

ROBERT TURMAN
FLUX
SPECTRUM SPOOLS | 2LP | £25.99

TURMANATOR TRANCE! Nerve-damaged, hallucinatory zoners non pareil...Robert Turman’s Flux is back in print on eat-yer-dinner-off-it 2LP and as mesmerising, whacked-out and unsettling as ever. Fuck me, it’s so good. I have no idea where RT’s head was at when he made this, but it feels like a vision of minimalism as mental illness, ambient as analogue for numbness and despond. It was his first solo release, and marked a conscious turn away from the nihilistic industrial muse he’d pursued in his previous work with NON, Z.O. Voider and others. But its meditative, measured, often breathtakingly pretty long-form pieces - each one “a complex bed of interweaving micro-stasis” made with simple configurations of tape-loops, piano, kalimba and Mini Pops Jr drum machine – have a scarred, PTSD feel, their gently eddying currents of sound suggestive of all kinds of suppressed nastiness. But hey that’s just me! Maybe the guy was genuinely jus' relaxing. It’s hard to think of many comparable records, but there’s an unmistakeable Satie influence in the gently climbing piano motifs, and elsewhere the smeared pastorals of Andrew Chalk and Vikki Jackman come to mind, but the zombie andante / zen-techno pulsations of its second half are of another planet entirely. All-timer.

SKEPTICAL
FIBONACCI SEQUENCE
EXIT | 12" | £9.99

Everything we wanted from dnb in 2019 but were afraid to ask...Skeptical's stuff sometimes leaves us a bit cold but these four dubwise, armour-plated, ultra-technical steppers are the business, with minimal, dungeon-decimating bassline torpedo 'Charge' the pick of the bunch. The production is unbelievable, seemingly sent back from the future with express orders to KILL KILL KILL, and unlike so many of is contemporaries Skep doesn't ruin every breakdown / drop-out with dodgy samples of film dialogue, instead keeping dance and bonce properly dialled-into the eternal dystopian moment. Required wreckers! 
POLONIUS
TAURUS
IKUISUUS | CS | £6.99

Rabid Finns BLASTING out some smash and grab free muzak voodoo with deformed, blown-out grooves and brooding, midnight atmospheres that give ye the same high-torque hairdryer treatment as you would get sat in the front row at a Cairo Free Jazz Ensemble gig or listening to a Vermonster LP full blast in a shipping container. 

Unsettling as it is INVIGORATING, layers upon layers of elastic electronics and graceful keys lurking around - spectators to the reoccurring elephant seal deathmatch between the soaring brass and frantic percussion and leaving the whole thing feeling a bit like the soundtrack to some demented ritual that involves throwing a pile of Albert Ayler records down the stairs on the stroke of midnight, fuck knows - where’s me inhaler!?
Edition of 75.

Psycho electronic whirlwind rescued from 1976 - Horacio Vaggione and Eduardo Polonio’s maiden voyage before becoming seasoned synth nutters ( Vaggione’s “La Maquina De Cantar” and Polonio’s “Acacia La Mañana” WELL worth a gander).

In perfect cadence with the bustling, blossoming coral reef sleeve, “Viaje” is a vivid, glistening electronic ecosystem that could go head to head with all of the we-are-not-worthy astral synth spooling of all the other finest Creel Pone’d gear (Jack Tamul / Jean Hoyoux / Michael Lobel ++) that evolves with an impulsive, at times aggressive balance of improvisation / composition.

The three long-form pieces see melodies rapidly sprouting and developing in the spaces between the sprawling synthesiser tones, like plants amidst the fissures in a rock, the sonic void rapidly overflowing to shattering what anyone would think to be the limitations of the sonic spectrum!

I guess in that sense it has the properties of a noise record, all the dense, electronic landscaping and psychedelia that escalates into climactic studio pile-ups (easy lads!!) subsiding and leaving you with more space than you ever knew existed, like you’ve just realised you are trapped in a cave that is the size of the earth. Help!!

Nowt banal or bearded about this planet crashing summer scrambler. MENTAL.

FRANK HURRICANE
PYMP WORLD
ULTRA ECZEMA | LP | £17.99

 
Trust ol’ man Tyfus to unleash this American psychobilly, Frankie Hurricane, onto unsuspecting European audiences. The album (originally a self-released tape, then issued as a CDR on Joshua Burkett's Mystra label) is tie-dye Manson Family folk meets the ear-worm vocal melodies and loner-jazz/orchestral arrangements of Blod’s Knutna Nävar. Throw in the heart-bleed blooz of ‘One Night At Wildorado’ and it’s only a sidestep to the ‘gangstrous’ hip-hop excursions of ‘Who U Is?’ and ‘Pymp World’ around the corner (neither of which would be out of place on Del-boy Edwards’ L.A. Club Resource). It’s an art-damaged-folk DIY-hip-hop-country travelogue clearly patched together at different times with borrowed equipment and with no mind paid to consistency (refreshing!). The fact that the LP was written in Georgia might be the only thing that gives it any sense of plausible context. But only maybe. Approach this one with an open mind and you shall be rewarded time and time again. Edition of 250 copies with insert. 
REQ
TAPE TRANSPORT: 1994-2000 (SECOND EDITION)
SEAGRAVE | 2CS | £13.99

WHOA. Much needed second edition of this staggeringly well-presented double-cassette compilation of unreleased tracks from the archives of one of our all-time favourite producers: UK graffiti pioneer and Brighton native REQ, whose deep, droning, dub-smudged hip-hop scapes quietly deconstructed and remodelled the genre in late 90s - for those who were listening, anyway. We’re paraphrasing slightly, but it was another avowed fan, Lee Gamble, who said that REQ’s 1997 album One is to hip-hop what A Guy Called Gerald’s Black Secret Technology is to jungle. Like B.S.T., REQ’s music has a strung-out, quiet, reflective, Isolationist intensity to it, it’s music made not for the dancefloor but for intense private zoning… proper head music, unerringly rhythmic but constantly threatening pure ambient drift, and sounding as alien, smoked-out and futuristic today as it did 20+ years ago. Curt, tuff boom-bap rhythms are smeared and smothered into space-curdling abstraction, loops are sustained and hooks repeated for way longer than any right-thinking rap producer would dare - yeah REQ’s music feels, at times, like hip-hop extrapolated into a new kind of minimal B-boy techno. Not to mention the foregrounding of crackle and tape-hiss, reverb and delay, which is rooted in classic 90s sampledelia but clearly prefigures the early 2000s micro/dub experiments of Jan Jelinek, Pole etc and the kind of ultra-spatialised sound design we take totally for granted today. The lost tunes assembled across this set of two tapes feel like tunes too long, too cerebral, too fucked-up to fit in the context or duration of a conventional, commercially released album, and as such they represent REQ at his most bold, idiosyncratic and avant-garde. Seriously, fucking hell, this is nothing short of the MOTHERLODE. I need to have a lie-down. 

Pair of pro-dubbed cassettes - 1 black, 1 white - with contrasting on-body prints from REQ's 90's graffiti blackbook. Supplied in a double butterfly case with full-colour double-sided j-cards. Includes download code and die-cut sticker designed by REQ.

THIS KIND OF PUNISHMENT
IN THE SAME ROOM
SUPERIOR VIADUCT | LP | £23.99

This Kind of Punishment’s third and final album: reverberant art-rock death-jag In The Same Room. If TKOP’s self-titled debut was the sound of a band finding its feet, and if the texturally adventurous chamber-pop on Beard of Bees is represents their artistic zenith, then In The Same Room is… what? Well it's my favourite, for what its worth. Beautifully, vividly recorded - its title couldn’t be more apt, this now extremely rare swansong for one of New Zealand's best ever bands offers an embarrassment of riches: ‘Immigration Song’ and ‘Don’t Go’ hark back to the post-punk slash-and-burn of the pre-TKOP grouping Nocturnal Projections, the spiky, jangling folk implosions of ‘Overground In China’ and ‘The Men By The Pool’ anticipate Peter Jeffries’ surly solo masterpiece Last Great Challenge In A Dull World, while the windswept widescreen ‘On Various Days’ surely numbers among the very best songs in the Flying Nun catalogue. Absolute belter. 

WHAT TIME DID YOU WAKE UP THIS MORNING?

Strictly business today!

Slight and possibly unnecessary modifications made to the website today, apologies to anyone who’s browsing experience was terrorised.

Ye, not got much time for chat tonight (its barbecue weather! kinda!), loadsa wicked stuff arrived today though, see below.


xx

LC

NOOR
WONT TO WANTON EYEBATH / SYNAPSE FUSION REFUSAL
ULTRA ECZEMA | 7" | £9.99

WILD two-tracker from Lebanese-American artist akimbo Nour Mubarak turned one-woman band for Dennis the mennis Tyfus' Ultra Eczema imprint. It's disorderly, desirous pop in rapid, low fidelity transit. A joyride with the breaks cut listening to some Kas Product / Neon tapes, the impulsive, sorta self-conscious bedroom jangle of Itchy Bugger, the unlikely summer balladry of Brenda Ray. Fark. Yes, THAT good. 

“Synapse Fusion Refusal” offers five minutes of phasing, subway-station recorded guitar riffs chasing their tail around distant, tin rhythm-box presets and wrung-out, violently manipulated vocals - all the elements feeling as chaotic and THRILLING as going downhill in an old, rickety, unmanned streetcar, the friction between them acting as the only component to give any direction.

“Wont to Wanton Eyebath” bears all the stealthy, rhythmic shadow boxing of an early Lena Platoons cut, Mubarak’s FX drenched poetics and deep spoken word moving like dry ice between the sluggish low-end beat patterns, that could be mistaken for one of those oddball NYC electro 45’s from the mid 80s playing at the wrong speed. Perfect 7”!!

SPELEOCOMBO
SPELEOCOMBO SPEELT VU
ULTRA ECZEMA | 7" | £9.99

Boozy, Belgian covers of Velvet Underground from the late 80s. Only 200 copies of this party-starter!
SARAH HUGHES & JON COLLIN
WASHINGTON DC, 11 APRIL 2019
EARLY MUSIC | CD | £7.99

SARAH HUGHES & JON COLLIN

Live 10 April, 2019
EARLY MUSIC | CD | £7.99

CD-R. Cold, refined but utterly transcendental blues minimalism, documenting a duo performance by Jon Collin and Sarah Hughes that took place barely two months ago at Rhizome in Washington, DC. With its small-hours echoes of John Surman’s classic ECM outings and the mighty Vor Der Flut compilation, this disc has knocked us for six - Collin using his treated, tremulous guitar sorcery to create sparse, impressionistic but utterly absorbing environments for his collaborator’s woodwind and reeds to roam in and grapple with. Hughes’ interventions begin as ghostly residue, a droning spirit-world rebuke to the alive and unseeing and ungrateful, but then swell unexpectedly, and ecstatically, to climaxes of weeping, plangent, unaffected jazz lyricism. And back again. If this one does anything for you, make sure you check Collin and Jordan Perry’s Charlottesville, 10 April 2019, which is also newly available courtesy of Early Music. You need both sets, to be honest, but the Hughes/Collin disc is just extraordinary… one of the year’s finest, no doubt.

RAP (THOMAS BUSH & GUY GORMLEY)
EXPORT
JOLLY DISCS | LP | £10.00

**Vinyl edition, housed in full picture sleeve.** Free, fresh, rowdy-cum-wistful rave/blooz mutations from Thomas Bush and Guy Gormley (Special Occasion, Enchante), improbably applying hardstyle tempos to breezy, dub-scuffed pop songs with soca/funky-derived rhythms and eerie, ambient/folk textures (what?). Hashed out over a few sessions at GG’s studio over the road from us back in December, it’s a looser, spacier excursion than the duo’s last RAP outing, the brightly lit and tightly wound ‘Originals’ - and in true Jolly Discs fashion it goes down so easy it takes a few listens before the true extent of its craft and daring and attention to detail becomes apparent. Those of us craving more from Bush after last year’s banging Old & Redought to be first in line - his distinctive young-druid vocals are used sparingly, but very effectively, here, while as co-producers he and Gormley deliver something more than the sum of themselves, folding upful, bashy UK house tropes into a more private, moody, crepuscular sphere - a world where floatation-tank techno chords, steel-drum vamps and LFOish sub-bass plasma-bursts co-exist with eldritch swirls of woodwind and stately, high-lonesome piano nocturnes. It could be music imagined from a point so far in the future, or by a civilisation so far away, that they perceive the temporal and cultural distance between Gareth Williams and Karizma to be effectively zero. Or just people making stuff to suit themselves, and kindly sharing the spoils with you>>>>

SPECIAL OCCASION
IBIZA REDUX
JOLLY DISCS | 12" | £8.99

Dunno how it’s going wherever you are in the world, but - UNTIL TODAY AT LEAST - summer in London 2019 has been, to use the official meteorological term, “utter shite”. Thank god then for this factor-30-slathered 6-track 12” from Special Occasion, Guy Gormley and David Gray’s first new material together since 2017’s brilliant The Word tape (so brilliant, you may recall, that we were moved to give it a vinyl release via our shoppe label a year later). They’re back with the Jolly Discs mothership now for Ibiza Redux’s salt-breezed, sun-gilded and all-instrumental paeans to the White Isle – we’re assuming they have in mind its more secluded, er, more More-ish spaces rather than the paved-with-Englishman’s-vomit main drag. Not that this stuff isn’t dance music / wouldn’t sound good if you were mullered – opener ‘Sandstone’ occupies the no man's land between Virgo Four and Double's ‘Captain Of My Heart’ (eek!), while ‘Rampling’’s bruk, soca-ish snares and heat-warped steel-drums evoke more of a London thing, finding magic at the crushed-tinny-and-chicken-bone-strewn outer edge of carnival. 'Jet Ski' and 'Big Wheel', with their triumphantly twee synth lines and trilling coin-op FX, split the difference between peak Metro Area and the soundtrack to Sonic The Hedgehog: Amnesia '87. But generally the SO MO is more sensitive, melancholic, exposed: see especially the bittersweet empyrean jazz of ‘Let Me In’, with its echoes of Antena, Crépuscule, The Sea and Cake’s Oui... before 'Rupies' brings you back to port on a raft of ruff, rolling dub-house. The prevailing mood throughout is WISTFULNESS. Our favourite thing. Azure skies and seas recollected from behind rain-lashed English windows. Ecstasy meets unrequited love. Yeah Ibiza Redux is pretty much my favourite celebration / deconstruction of the Balearic experience since the Pet Shop Boys' 'Domino Dancing' vid. No higher praise than that! 
THISTLE GROUP
THISTLE GROUP
SOFT ABUSE | 7" | £7.99

On first listen this new 7" from Claire Mahoney's "slowly scrambled solo endeavour" Thistle Group seemed a bit slight, bit wispy, but more fool me... it's a wild animal, a blinder, but the kind you have to meet in the middle. 'Hold On' lays down the sleep-deprived, hyper-sensitised, high-lonesome vibe: Mahoney's drowned-folk vocalisations bobbing and weaving amidst industrial flotsam / ice-floe, strangled guitar and funereal one-armed-drumming. Party! 'High' gestures in the direction of pop bliss, with its spacey Fisher Price keyboard tones (think Pickle Factory, Call Back The Giants etc) and gently climbing lullaby melody, and 'Always The First Sleep' combines righteously involuted axe-melt in the tradition of Mahoney's countrymen Brian Crook and the Dead C with cold machinic death-throb, and 'Into The Night' comes over like some unholy hybrid of CDF and early '90s Whitehouse.  

BRUCE RUSSELL & LUKE WOOD
VISCERAL REALISTS
VHF | LP | £21.99

Top drawer garage band abstractions and droning, static-clash hauntology from the Dead C's Bruce Russell and fellow Christchurch racket-maker Luke Wood, previously released as a micro-edition lathe cut on Wood's Illam Press. A small child just walked in the shop as we were playing "Visceral Realists" for the first time and dubbed it "engine music". Not far off, kiddo! 
MOPE GROOVES
THE WAVES
SEE MY FRIENDS RECORDS | LP | £12.99

Twisted,  strangled bedroom pop from Portland. Part synth pop / new wave / garage / post-punk. Sounds like a outta-tune Glaswegian indie troupe (think a slowed down Vital Idles) in a head-on collision with RAP/Special Occassion/Jolly Discs crew.  Skittish and unwieldy in the best possible way - never the same on the next go-‘round. One of last year’s gems that slipped our attention.

NOW YOU'RE JUST BEING RIDICULOUS

Evening, 

Apologies for the late mailout, much interruptus this week, with a certain west country reggae* enthusiast coming to town on ardkore radio ops yesterday and stopping by to talk shop / shite all evening, which was most welcome, but you know, not a little bit distracting. This garbage doesn't write itself... 

*LOADS OF TOP NEW REGGAE BITS IN. LOOK SEE.

Heavier and maybe a tad out of place in this rag, but it was a man called Paul’s funeral today. Paul built the counter and racks and all the other nice-looking stuff in our wee shop. He was a good man and way, way too young to be leaving us. Love and strength to his family and friends. Safe passage eh.

LC
xxx

 

OROSKALLAN
OROSKALLANS MUSIKALISKA RESA I TRO, MISSMOD OCH FANTASI
FORLAG FOR FRI MUSIK | LP | £16.99

The Gothenburgers are back with their unique chop of tangent taking free-folk music, the debut of this new Oskrallan guise (feat. Blow and Neutral’s Dan Johansson) feeling like all the psychosis / privacy / BEAUTY of a year's worth of daydreams, rolled into one 40 minute soundscape. A short, serene walk from 2017 (pah!) and the whole crew’s Det Finns Ett Hjärta Som För Dig, it’s sedate campfire jamboree whittled into a more mystical, instrumental strain of Enhet alchemy, with vocals, for the most part, scaled back on - forming a forest coven-style collage of splintered ragas and acid-folk sketches. Hand drums and an arsenal of primitive wind instruments roll over a backdrop of fell-down-a-well field recordings and subtle, humming synthesisers - it’s the Third Ear Band at 4am, half of them listening to a Graham Lambkin’s Draining The Vats tape, the other half trying to stay warm by soundtracking the documentary about the Pendle witch-trials that one of their kooky pals has been threatening to make for years. The real deal! **Burned through our first box of this badboy, but last remaining copies soon come - hopefully here mid-next week, together with the long-awaited Monokultur LP**

COÏTUS INT.
COÏTUS INT.
BUNKERPOP | LP | £17.99

Self released 1981 braindamaged-punk unit’s debut LP and follow up to the stormy “Dead Excitement” EP. Sedated, introspective slurs in murmur'd English over a unit of granite-trapped schoolboys hashing out the kinda tense but meditative, harmonic guitar-bleeding and knife slit water bass lines that made you fall in love with all this sorta gear in the first place - depressive, pressure caving themes played with an inventive, resistant will to LIVE. Sounding off a bit like Ski Patrol or Rema Rema sans the art-school melodrama, this one's got us back on that fucking wagon to nowhere. Uh-oh.
 

MATTHEW SULLIVAN
MATTHEW
RECITAL | LP | £19.99

Been gearing up to try and relay the MAGIC felt by all when the first few copies of "Matthew" arrived at the shop a couple of months ago (they flew before these shiftless souls could add them to the website). Now realising this might be a good time to not inflect our own misguided imaginations and wrap the usual splurge, Sean McCann's words setting a perfect backdrop, calling this intensely personal record into context for all. Stunner!!

"Matthew is nailed together with driftwood from around the world. The waters of Italy, the pubs of London, birds of Japan, a phone call in Los Angeles. Sullivan moved from California to London in 2016. Living in London was a pivotal time for Matt, as I see it. This record digests that time. Each sound on Matthew means something very specific to the artist. Locales and memories focus to mind as passages rise and sink. Us listeners cannot know what transpires across the speakers, however. Our own narrative is quietly built. I like records that don’t concern the audience, ones that make you invest yourself; this is one of those records. Fans of Sullivan’s music know that he never gives an inch more or an inch less than he needs to. Bold and looming with few extraneous elements. Ekhein, Matt’s former cassette label, and his new label, as of yet without name, also carry this motif. Two side-long pieces, expertly woven, constitute this album. I admire Matt’s ability to play with proximity and depth of field: fading sirens, ripping waters, and digitized breath. Like an hallucinating Bill Fontana, the two works are sensory travels folding into themselves. Matt is once again living in Los Angeles, and thus the nostalgic mist that forms within Matthew is all the more meaningful."

YABBY YOU MEETS KING TUBBY
WALLS OF JERUSALEM
PRESSURE SOUNDS | 2LP | £19.99

Woi!! Monstrous revive, surely one of the most vital dub/reggae reissues of recent years? Previously nigh-on impossible to acquire, these sessions feature a whole squad of talent at their best - Pat Kelly, Sly + Robbie, Errol Thompson, Tommy McCook +++ KNOCK-OUT. Also features a whole disc of bonus material / studio outtakes, which we ourselves haven't quite got to yet having got disc one seemingly glued FIRMLY to our turntable. Loads of other new reggae/dub bits new in too, have a sniff.
 

TELEVISION PERSONALITIES
SOME KIND OF HAPPENING: SINGLES 1978-1989
FIRE | 2LP+7" | £24.99

God-given 2LP+7” compilation bringing together all of TVPs’ 1978-1989 single releases, fully remastered, from evergreen self-released debut '14th Floor’ through to ‘Salvador Dali’s Garden Party’. A monument to the heartbreaking staggering genius of Dan Treacy.

Broadly speaking, the first half of the comp reps the Ed Ball and Joe Foster years - tracking the group’s passage from shambling, self-effacing post-punk unlikely-lads to the none-better-dressed overlords of the Living Room scene, their pop-that-eats-itself gradually taking more on more of the speedy mod-revival swagger that Ball would push to its logical conclusion with The Times, and with lyrics that remind/reassure us that London has ALWAYS been full of wankers.

The second half of the comp sees the arrival of Jowe Head into the band's creative nucleus, shepherding the sonics and arrangements into a more spaced-out, multi-instrumental and pungently psychedelic zone, while Treacy’s writing is more vulnerable, more emotional, more obviously drug-damaged. All the classics are there: ‘Oxford St, W1’, ‘Where’s Bill Grundy Now?’, ‘Posing At The Roundhouse’, ‘I Know Where Syd Barrett Lives’, ‘Smashing Time’… The bonus 7” features a brace of songs that Treacy, Bernie Cooper and Mark Sheppard recorded as The Gifted Children for an ’81 Whaaam! outing, and their version of The Creation’s ‘Biff Bang Pow’ that appeared on a flexidisc given away with Alan McGee’s Communication Blur zine. Download included with all of that plus extras.

Still shocks me how few people are properly acquainted with ver Television Personalities - if you’re one of them, I can recommend no better place to start. If you’re already a believer, this CAPACIOUS set will fill the gaps in your collection and your shot-to-shite excuse for a memory. On my life, it doesn’t get better than this.

HOW D'YA SPELL THE SPIES?

Hullo der,

Set times announced (kinda) for our birthday bruise-cruise next weekend - ANOTHER fucking Bank Holiday Sunday - get organised folks

RUNNING ORDER:

Live Room: open from 16:30 - CIVILISTJÄVEL!, BRIDGET HAYDEN, O YUKI CONJUGATE, THOMAS BUSH, DENNIS TYFUS + HELM (!), BOBBY WOULD, LOLINA // Ends around 10 probably.

PUB QUIZ 1500-1600, if you want involved - don’t be late. V nice prizes (tbd) - cheaters shall be expelled - d’ya hear?!

DJ action in the bar 14:00-midnight with unhinged shambolics from the full Wah Wah Wino crew in amongst a host of friends, enemies and staff members - can’t wait!

Tickets available from the site, limited capacity!

LC xx
CIVILISTJÄVEL!
2
NOT ON LABEL | LP | £17.99

Ships Monday! Edition of 199 numbered copies with hand-pasted sleeves, one per customer please. The second volume of previously unreleased material from cloak-and-dagger Swedish electronics project Civilistjävel!. Until last year's 1 LP their work - created mostly in the 1990s, using Juno60 and Korg MS20 - had never been officially documented or disseminated. The tracks assembled on 2 pivot away from the lonesome, levitating kosmische themes of 1, and into a dronal, dubwise, heavily psychoactive minimal techno realm. We've never heard anything quite like the steamrolling, monolithic, kickdrum-centered epic that spans all twelve icy minutes of Side 1 - never, that is, outside of a recurring dream we've had since childhood about a recommissioned Northern Rail train smuggling munitions behind enemy lines in a future rural Yorkshire as part of humanity's guerilla war effort against shadowy, possibly entirely imaginary Mysteron-like oppressors. Erm...The other two pieces that constitute this LP are paranoid, broken, sub-heavy constructions that have echoes in Jan Jelinek's Gramm or latterday stuff from Hidden Hawaii, but always with that reserve and austere, out-of-time feel peculiar to the true European mutant/drone underworld. Seriously, how had this stuff not come to light before now?! Civilistjävel! plays live as part of Low Company's 2nd Birthday all-dayer on Sunday 26th May at London's New River Studios.   

REDNESS
KILLER BEES

NOT ON LABEL | LP | £15.99

Welcome exhumation of unheard, sizzlin' 1980 6-track'er from Cleveland. Uncompromising art-punk spew and righteous clatter, a depressive and WRITHING tour de farce recorded in some dank basement at a time when there was still a chance for such humble, OUTRAGEOUS projects to cross over into the “real world”. No such luck for this swarming post-punk obscuro though, forever destined to buzz away in the shadows with a sting that KILLS. 150 copies - FFO The Residents, Captain Beefheart, Electric Eels +++

DIDAKTISCHE EINHEIT
DOSIS 6
ZZK TAPES | CS | £6.99

 

Replica version of the pulsing, minimal synth and Suicide styled, glass smashing live action featured on one of the seven self-released tapes by Didaktische Einheit in 1982. Manic, dilapidated rhythms and hopeless, zoned-out chants from the German underground - one please! Edition of 150.

DIÄT
POSITIVE DISINTEGRATION
BLACKEST EVER BLACK | LP | £12.99

Long-time-coming (four years!) second album from Diat, and, we're told, the penultimate ever release from BEB. The demand for this puppy (Iron Lung, who did the US release, are already onto their second pressing) speaks for itself eh: the German/Aussie band’s debut, Positive Energy, a belter for the ages, channelled no small amount of rage and disaffection into songs of pure disarming chest-bursting JOY, speaking to punks first and foremost but with enough going on to trickle down to a much wider audience. 

Fairly sure they were taking the piss when they once described their music as "tough new wave" - but it's stuck, cos it's spot-on. They deliver the bleak outlook and angular hooks of post-punk, but ditch the implied space and minimalism in favour of a huge, head-crushing wall of sound, and some of the belligerent, bonehead swagger of, I dunno, Coitus Inc. Positive Disintegration is a more fractious, bruised, MOROSE record than its predecessor (clue's in the title!) - youthful brio replaced with uncertainty and ennui and a mounting wariness towards the no-sleep-til-Dienstag Berlin vampires who once seemed so enviably free and glamorous, dahlink. Lyrically, they make a subject, and for the most part a virtue, of that uncertainty - most vividly on ‘Missed The Bus’, an all too relatable elegy for the whole terrible aggregate of wasted/thwarted opportunities we call LIFE (it's also the gentlest song they've ever recorded, its schweet soft ache enhanced no end by backing vocals from Fran of the motherf***king CANNANES - returning the favour for Diat’s banging cover of the Oz legends’ ‘Blue Skies Over The Ocean’ on Positive Energy). Some experiments don't come off as well, but when they find their feet they’re a force of nature: see full-throttle rippers ‘Foreign Policy’ and ‘Only My Own’, both showcases  for Tobi Lill and Josh 'Itchy Bugger' Neutron’s scream-to-a-sigh, Killing Joke-meets-Chameleons twin-guitar fireworks. 

THE FLYING LIZARDS
THE SECRET DUB LIFE OF THE FLYING LIZARDS
STAUBGOLD | LP | £19.99

Finally back in print: Staubgold's vinyl edish of David Cunningham's peerless The Secret Dub Life of The Flying Lizards. The source tapes for this LP were recorded in Jamaica by Jah Lloyd circa '73-'74 as a part of a series he was making for Virgin's Front Line imprint, but were never used for their intended purpose. Instead, Front Line's Jumbo Vanrennen (we should all have a friend called Jumbo) passed them to Cunningham and invited him to remix them as he saw fit. 

Cunningham continues: "I accepted the project, expecting lots of time in one of Virgin's studios to play with the music and the equipment, only to be presented with a mono master tape. So I began to invent (or perhaps re-invent) techniques of editing, looping, filtering and subtraction to deal with unremixable mono material (these were the days before samplers).

"The subsequent work took a long time: as I thought it might be something of an indulgence I worked on it at weekends and evenings rather than let it interfere with other projects. The techniques used here expanded my vocabulary of musical electronic (as opposed to electronic music) treatments and appear in a very different form on records made at that time. Notably 'Fourth Wall', my collaboration with Patti Palladin, and my production work on Michael Nyman's records."

The result - which lay unreleased until a CD on Cunningham's Piano label in 1995 - is one of the most strikingly inventive and immersive dub sets of all time, radical yet rootical, properly tuff rhythm-wise but at the same taking reggae into a truly meditative, ethereal space, exploring the limits of form and technique while staying true to the spirit of Lloyd's tunes and his (unidentified) musicians' playing (truer than the brace of '95-produced tracks Cunningham added for the CD issue - both brilliant, but occupying more of a date-stamped ambient-techno zone). The original cache of '74 versions remain uniquely sumptuous, aqueous, ineffable, awe-inspiring. 

No home etc etc!