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Weekly Update Om Unit, DJ Empty, Glitter Wizard, Weezer, Holy Strays, and more...

Hola, faithful Normiculturists, I’ve had a week off my usual intro duties while Brian had a go but now I’m back! I’ll be away again next week though because it’s my birthday so you’d better make the most of me while I’m here. Don’t know what you’ve got ‘til it’s gone and all that.

Everyone’s going reissue crazy this week and all. Me and the Business Lady both went nuts when we saw Weezer’s blue album turn up on LP, had a big ol’ singalong and took them home with us the same day. It’s good to see Portishead’s game-changing classic ‘Dummy’ back on vinyl too, not to mention NZ scuzz kings Dead C’s ‘Harsh ‘70s Reality’, and there’s a 20th Anniversary Edition of Ride’s ‘Going Blank Again’, Talk Talk’s ‘Laughing Stock’ has a Back On Black reissue with marginally different artwork to the Ba Da Bing one from a few months ago, and Italo-noise legend Maurizio Bianchi’s ‘Regel’ has had a limited vinyl repress too. Oh, and Harry Pussy’s unlistenable swansong ‘Let's Build a Pussy’ and The Stone Roses’ ‘Second Coming’ have been repressed too, if you’re into that sort of thing.

As for the new records, Mike from Tunng’s got a new band called Cheek Mountain Thief who have an album full of uplifting pastoral indie pop with orchestral touches, prolific guitar voyager Oren Ambarchi has a really impressive new new solo one, and there’s an LP of his ‘Black Plume’ collaboration with Crys Cole and Keith Rowe, plus his excellent ‘Audience of One’ has finally come in on vinyl for the first time too! Busy lad! And speaking of things you’ve been waiting for, Smoke Fairies’ ‘Blood Speaks’ is finally in on vinyl, and we’ve got some long-awaited restocks of the pink vinyl edition of Cliff Martinez’s iconic ‘Drive’ OST. Members of Magik Markers, Sonic Youth and Tall Firs join forces for the schizophrenic new Spectre Folk LP, and if that’s not weird enough for you then maybe you wanna try the limited new LP from Norsk nutcase Nils Rostad.

Blackest Rainbow have sent us four new titles as well as a bunch of old ones at reduced prices that might be worth a gander, Samara Lubelski’s got another album of her intimate guitar pop, Portuguese stoner rockers Black Bombaim have a star-studded 2LP of galloping jams, Atrax Morgue has a horror-themed new LP, and Hibernate offshoot Rural Colours have sent us gorgeous new CDs from drone-meisters Wil Bolton and Hakobune, the latter of whom also teams up with Pleq for a gorgeous CD on Nomadic Kids Republic, who also have a delightful new CD of electro acoustic neoclassical-tinged soundscapes from Giulio Aldinucci. Other new albums this week come from The North Sea, Wishmountain, Spector, The Magic, Holy Balm, Serengeti, Poison Idea, Jason Steel, Oberman Knocks, Edgar Summertyme, Schnitzler/Reihse, Stagnant Pools, Dead Can Dance(!), James Yorkston, Pin Group, DJ Sprinkles, Chris Lee, Bernard Parmegiani and last but not least, various artists.

On to the singles, which might actually be even more exciting than the albums this week! There’s two which are standing way out as the items of the week for me anyway - first we’ve got the return of Woods, who tease us with ‘Cali In A Cup’ from their new album which doesn’t drop for a month or two yet (but we’ve got a promo and it’s fucking brilliant), and as if that wasn’t thrilling enough Great Pop Supplement have got a lengthy split 7” from Spacemen 3 and Sun Araw! What a pairing! That’s not all though - Celer & Machinefabriek’s third in their series of collaborative 7”s has hit our shelves, The Babies have a brand new seven on Woodsist too, and Wolf Eye Nate Young’s synth duo Moon Pool & Dead Band have a cheeky Cramps-sampling 12” that’ll make your head nod all over the place, and Jonas Reinhardt is back with a new EP of fresh kraut-disco goodness. Hip-hop-poppers Why? are back in business with a new 12” EP, indie poppers The History of Apple Pie up their game with a slick and playful newie, Digital Mystikz Coki and Mala have a new offering each, not to mention other short playing options from the likes of (I Am) Ampersand, Bloc Party, Step Panther, Om Unit, DJ Empty, Holy Strays, Splashh, Tashaki Miyaki, Public Service Broadcasting, Glitter Wizard, Terrible Truths, UMA and Tonfedd Oren! Phew!

That’s it. Be nice to each other and don’t smoke anything I wouldn’t.


Grandmikester Flash and the Furious Norms


Best records this week

According to our review team at least...

Monoton

Monotonprodukt 07

10/10 from Brian

We wanted to give this album of the week when we first got it but they sold out too quickly so here we are again! Here's Brian's review for the black vinyl but we now have whi...read on »

Oren Ambarchi

Sagittarian Domain

10/10 from Brian

Not got too familiar with this laddie yet. He’s a pretty eclectic and prolific one yet I’ve only heard a couple of bits, but both Mike and I pricked up our ears wh...read on »

Scald Rougish

Auen Ansici / Bardachd

9/10 from Ant

The excellent Icasea label go from strength to strength as they unleash arguably their finest release yet. Scald Rougish is yet another alias from Chris Douglas (Dalglish, OST...read on »

Nicolas Bernier

Music For A Piano / Music For A Book

9/10 from Brian

I’ve listened to this chapster before. Here he fleshes out his intuitive brain mumbles and musical pondering into a two-disc set of lush neoclassical tinkering and exper...read on »

The Big Eyes Family Players & Friends

Folk Songs II

9/10 from Clinton

Lovely to see a brand new Big Eyes Family Players album and this time it's a stunner. Whilst flipping through this morning's Guardian (alfresco with coffee and croissant, natc...read on »

Maurizio Bianchi / M.B

Regel

9/10 from Brian

The boss ran out of the building to suck nervously at his cigarettes when I opted to stick this on at 9am. He was terrified it was gonna be a load of what he terms as “h...read on »

Nils Rostad

Harmony Hammond

9/10 from Brian

Fuck me this guy is a mad-ass skronk-folk shredder isn’t he? This wonky monkey of an album is mad limited, comes in a rather eccentric sleeve with charming crackers inse...read on »

UMA

Drop Your Soul

9/10 from Brian

Cor, this EP starts off with a well slow tune, like trip-hop/R’n’B slowed down to a crawl propped up with angelic lady on vocals and then halfway through this rico...read on »

Woods

Cali In A Cup

9/10 from Li'l Biz

Woods are absolutely unstoppable! They seem incapable of making bad records and ‘Cali In A Cup’, the first single from their up-and-coming ‘Bend Beyond&rsquo...read on »

Moon Pool & Dead Band

Human Fly

9/10 from Li'l Biz

Dave Shettler (The Sights) and Wolf Eyes’ Nate Young return with a second outing under the Moonpool and Dead Band moniker to delivery three new crusty electronic party j...read on »

Jonas Reinhardt

Foam Fangs

9/10 from Li'l Biz

Jonas Reinhardt (a.k.a Jonas Reiner) returns with four fresh, instantly enjoyable Moroder-esque disco cuts for the untouchable (if slightly expensive) NNF offshoot 100% Silk. ...read on »

Giulio Aldinucci

Tarsia

9/10 from Phil

Here’s a newie on the Nomadic Kids Republic label which in case you didn’t know is run by Ian ‘Home Normal’ Hawgood. He’s been cracking ‘...read on »

Pleq & Hakobune

Adrift

9/10 from Mike

This CD sees prolific lonely dronester Hakobune team up with serial collaborator Pleq for six tracks of detailed, melodic ambient drift. To be honest the two of them have both...read on »

Wil Bolton

Amber Studies

9/10 from Mike

Wil Bolton’s been a busy lad lately, I swear this is at least the fourth or fifth CD we’ve had of his this year if you include collaborations (on the likes of Dist...read on »

Cheek Mountain Thief

Cheek Mountain Thief

9/10 from ReviewBot300

So far in review corner today it’s just been a constant stream of drone, ambient and experimental offerings, so it’s very pleasant to finally have reached an album...read on »

Spacemen 3 / Sun Araw

That's Just Fine / I'm Gonna Cross The River Of Jordan

9/10 from Mike

I’m not certain anybody needs to review this because a Spacemen 3/Sun Araw split 7” on Great Pop Supplement is really going to sell itself, isn’t it? I mean ...read on »

Cut Hands

Black Mamba

9/10 from Ant

Cut Hands AKA William Bennett is back with a superb 12” for Blackest Ever Black. The 12” precedes his forthcoming second album which is of major excitement to me. ...read on »

Rrose

Preretinal

9/10 from Ant

Rrose is back again already with the second slab for his Eaux label. On the topside is ‘23 Lashes’ which as one would expect is a hypnotic techno cut with pristine...read on »

Russell Haswell

Remixed by Regis, William Bennett, Kevin Drumm

9/10 from Ant

When the sales notes for this 12” came through I almost had to scrape myself off the floor. It’s like a techno / noise fiend’s wet dream! Regis kicks things ...read on »

Other Lives / Atoms For Peace

Tamer Animals / Other Side

9/10 from Clinton

I’m so out of touch...I didn’t know Thom Yorke had a band with Flea, or who Other Lives are or that Mr Yorke was sporting a ponytail these days. So I’ve lear...read on »

DJ Sprinkles

Midtown 120 Blues

9/10 from Clinton

This is a re-issue of a 2009 album by Sprinkles (actually campaigner, sound manipulator and theorist Terre Thaemlitz) which is a tribute to the 42nd Street New York trans ...read on »

Tidal

Olympus

8/10 from Brian

I really like what I have heard on Chemical Tapes, it’s a right good label it is! This is a real cool effort by young Jimmy Billingham, someone with one of those names t...read on »

TOY

Dead & Gone

8/10 from Brian

Another limited outing for this latest buzz band on the block before their debut album lands. Not gonna rant on about this teaser twelve much as we’ve already described ...read on »

Touch33

Islands Inbetween

8/10 from Brian

Strange record this, taken from an obscure 28-year-old cassette dating back to Touch’s embryonic days as a field recordings tape label and now mastered lovingly onto vin...read on »

The Beach Boys

That's Why God Made The Radio

8/10 from Clinton

Probably the last thing I expected to happen this year was the announcement and release of a new Beach Boys album, and even then any initial thoughts would turn to their previ...read on »

Black Elk

Sparks

8/10 from Clinton

A veritible supergroup of the great and good of that thing they call electro acoustic pastoral driftiness. This features Ian Hawgood, Clem Leek, Danny Norbury and Tim Martin (...read on »

Keel Her

With Me Tonight / Boner Hit

8/10 from Clinton

As we wait with breath ever more baited for the vinyl version of the ace R. Stevie Moore comp (come on, Tim!), here is a mild diversion from a Winchester based chanteuse in co...read on »

Ozarks

Ozarks

8/10 from Clinton

As we found out last week a lot of musicians are so up their own arses that they couldn’t even spell the word ‘humility’ so its nice to see a bit of humour i...read on »

Oberman Knocks

Beatcroff Slabs

8/10 from Clinton

I’m more confused than ever. The website says ‘splinters’ the sleeve says ‘slabs’ the sleeve on the website looks different from the sleeve I&rsq...read on »

Black Bombaim

Titans

8/10 from Mike

Nice! Often the review pile is slim pickings if you’ve got the Tuesday review shift because often a lot of the good stuff doesn’t arrive until later in the week, b...read on »

Home Blitz

Frozen Tracks

8/10 from Mike

Well this is charming. On this 45rpm 12” EP New York’s Home Blitz knock out half a dozen charmingly ramshackle slices of clumsy but enthusiastic indie pop with occ...read on »

Splashh

Need It

8/10 from ReviewBot300

I’ve just been trying to get my head around the head-scratching newie from The North Sea so it’s nice to have a pop single to review now! On ‘Need It’ ...read on »

Terrible Truths

Lift Weights / Don Juan

8/10 from ReviewBot300

From one guitar-pop debut 7” to another, here I’ve got one from Aussies Terrible Truths, who are peddling an airy, minimal post-punk sort of sound with spindly gui...read on »

Glitter Wizard

Horses

8/10 from ReviewBot300

This is totally fun! Glitter Wizard peddle a brand of hi-octane glam rock with lots of filthy psychedelic guitar tones which isn’t far removed from those Uncle Acid dead...read on »

Samara Lubelski

Wavelength

8/10 from Brian

Well, I’ve listened to this and I enjoyed it so much I slapped the bugger straight on again, the joys of working late after the other boys and girls have gone! Samara do...read on »

Jason Steel

The Weight of Care

8/10 from Brian

Now this guy produces a sweet take on his chosen genre, one that resides in that dusty old field over yonder ie. alt. country/Americana. He’s from Sheffield, erm, Steel ...read on »

Atrax Morgue

I Vizi Morbosi Di Una Giovane Infermiera

8/10 from Brian

Another Italian, another sinister album, this time dedicated (and largely sampled from) cult Spanish underground director’s Eloy de la Iglesia’s no doubt controver...read on »

The History Of Apple Pie

Do It Wrong

8/10 from Brian

God which decade are we in? This is so the favoured “Era of Mike” [That’s “Mr ‘90s” to you, Brian - M] it is ridiculous. I thought HOAP wer...read on »

The Babies

Moonlight Mile / Places

8/10 from Li'l Biz

More reliable psych-pop, this time from The Babies, whose repertoire is growing in strength and confidence with each new release. This is their first single for Woodsist and p...read on »

Hakobune

All The Other Hearts I Knew

8/10 from Phil

We got a couple of newies in this week on the Rural Colours label which in case you didn’t know is an offshoot of the Hibernate label. The one I got here is a CD by Ha...read on »

Spectre Folk

Ancient Storm

8/10 from ReviewBot300

I think it’s pretty fair to call these guys a “supergroup”. It’s Pete Nolan from Magik Markers, Steve Shelley from the Sonic Youths, Aaron Mullan from ...read on »

Oren Ambarchi/ Crys Cole/ Keith Rowe

Black Plume

8/10 from Mike

Oh my days, it’s been drone-ambient central for me in the review pit today. I’ve still got that bloody horrible new Harry Pussy thing left to review and I can tell...read on »

James Yorkston

I Was A Cat From A Book

8/10 from Brian

Once again I’m left with a new album by someone who has been around the block and back around again, then stumbled down a blind alley or two, or the odd ditch. Sadly, on...read on »

Holy Strays

Christabell

8/10 from ReviewBot300

This is pushing my buttons this morning. Mysterious Frenchie Sebastien ‘Holy Strays’ Forrester is back with a little disc of his future techno experimental pop wei...read on »

Matthew Shaw

There Was Never A Time When Your Life Was Not Now, Nor Will There Ever Be

8/10 from ReviewBot300

Here’s another CD from reliable droner Matthew Shaw, where he incorporates city rumbles from Vancouver and plenty of birdsong and pastoral field recordings from the UK a...read on »

Pin Group

Ambivalence

8/10 from Clinton

Back in my early 20s I was something of a New Zealand freak. I couldn’t get enough of the dark skewed music which emanated from the Isle, particularly through the Flying...read on »

Celer & Machinefabriek

Hel/ Sou

8/10 from Clinton

So this is the third in the series of 7”s by these ambient heavyweights, it’s limited to a minuscule 250 copies has delightful artwork and comes with a postcard co...read on »

Swan-Hunter

Live Sheffield 3rd July 2012

8/10 from ReviewBot300

Here on Blackest Rainbow’s ‘Blackest Bootlegs’ series is a 16-minute performance from Swan-Hunter, who doles out an increasingly erratic, filthy drone which ...read on »

Why?

Sod In The Seed

8/10 from Clinton

I’m old enough to know the rules...and so it goes that I generally dismiss each new Why? release proclaiming it not as good as the last and that he’s ‘lost i...read on »

(I Am) Ampersand

Holding The Negative Up to The Light

8/10 from Clinton

New on the Great Pop Supplement, this is the second 7” from the solo project from Fujiya and Miyagi’s Matthew Hainsby. I must have missed the first (it apparently ...read on »

Featured albums

Oren Ambarchi/ Crys Cole/ Keith Rowe
Tonfedd Oren
Wil Bolton
UMA
Atrax Morgue
Hakobune
Maurizio Bianchi / M.B
Nils Rostad
Black Bombaim
The History Of Apple Pie
Harry Pussy
The North Sea
Bernard Parmegiani
Holy Strays
Celer & Machinefabriek
Coki
Various
Oren Ambarchi
Spector
Ride
(I Am) Ampersand
Spacemen 3 / Sun Araw
Jonas Reinhardt
Mala
DJ Sprinkles
Om Unit
Glitter Wizard
Spectre Folk
Moon Pool & Dead Band
Pin Group
Chris Lee
Terrible Truths
Pleq & Hakobune
Giulio Aldinucci
James Yorkston
Bloc Party
Cheek Mountain Thief
Woods
Samara Lubelski
Why?
Dead Can Dance
Step-Panther
Public Service Broadcasting
The Babies
Edgar Summertyme
Stagnant Pools
Tashaki Miyaki
Poison Idea
Conrad Schnitzler / Andreas Reihse
Wishmountain
Serengeti
Jason Steel
Splashh
Oberman Knocks
DJ Empty
The Magic
Holy Balm
Cliff Martinez / Various
Smoke Fairies
Talk Talk
Oren Ambarchi
The Stone Roses
Portishead
The Dead C
Weezer