It has been that rarest of things - a relatively quiet week here at the Towers. Yes, we’ve launched our ‘Christmas Gift Guide’ which we hope will help you navigate around the vagaries of present-buying, as well as providing with you with a few ideas of what you might want from Santa. Yes, we’ve taken delivery of some wonderful posters designed by hot-shot artist Drew Millward. Yes, we’ve launched our new Gift Voucher range which includes designs by Savage Pencil, James Green and the very same Drew Millward. And, yes, in between all that we’ve been working away on our ‘Album of the Year’ list which will be unleashed on Thursday 27th November. 1PM to be exact. Set your watches.
But still, it has been relatively peaceful. Which isn't to say that there haven't been any fine records arriving into these bleak concrete towers of ours. There have. Take a peek below at the highlights, and why not treat yourself to a little something. You deserve it!
- Sleaford Mods are back (again) with a brand new 12” Tiswas which you can get on yellow or orange vinyl you lucky people. Bonus unheard tracks too...
- Also by Sleaford Mods is their collection Chubbed Up + with all your singalong favourites, plus four unreleased tracks. Good for beginners.
- Kevin Drumm causes ‘Trouble’ with his one song 50 minutes long effort . It’s fun, insists Jim.
- Pefkin make wonderful sound collages with some folky guitar and Grouper-like atmospheres. Very limited (to 100!) vinyl LP on Morc.
- Shooting Guns ‘Wolfcop’ is recommended to you if you've ever wanted to watch a version of 'Top Gun' scored by Electric Wizard.
- Working in our concrete slab, we’ve found it hard to find a lighter side to concrete but The Twelve Hour Foundation have managed such a thing.
- Pheonix York is the address of a rather nice pub in the fair city but is also the name of an ambient artist who wants to play his synth for us.
- Ex Aberfeldy lassie Poppy Ackroyd now makes angelic neo-classical sounds on her own. Nice.
- Londoners Saint Etienne have curated their ‘Songs For a London Winter’. Let the stabbings cease as we dream by the warmth of the nearest exhaust pipe to Wally Whyton and pals.
- Freddie Gibbs and Madlib drop an essential remix 12” with some new material for you.
- Several oddball curios this week, including this spoken word rendition of an Ian Rankine story with celeb couple Nik Void and Tim Burgess doing something or other on it.
- Another curio is Joshua WF Thomson’s reworked and imagined versions of the music sent into space aboard Voyager I by NASA.
- Veteran German madcaps Faust do what the hell they like on the skeletal, seemingly improvised ’Just Us’.
- Ambient minstrel Eluvium makes an fx laden 10” on Vinyl Films with a glow in the dark sleeve. This will sell fast - Cameron Crowe owns the label y’know.
- Endless Melancholy is this week’s cheer-up band name of the week and they do what they say on the tin by composing haunting neo-classical compositions in the manner of Yann Tiersen.
In ELECTRONIC/weird/beatery news…
- Balearic-gazers Seahawks release a remix 12” that features a Pye Corner Audio mix.
- Murcof releases a collaborative album with Erik Truffaz. Our reviewer, it’s fair to say, ‘struggled’ with the trumpet aspect of it.
- A dad makes a song each year on his young lad's birthday. You could think it a sickeningly sweet mawk-fest? Not so. Instead, we get the warming electronica of tem’s ‘Jacktapes’. Lucky old Jack we say.
- “Proper rainbow shit” says Ant about 'Collected Works Vol. 2 - New Process Music' by M. Geddes Gengras.
- This Ekoplekz 12” took it’s time to arrive but it’s electronic treatery has been well worth the wait.
- Naka Nak’s creepy dark house/ lo-fi techno hits the sweet spot for Ant despite him listening to it at 7.20 am in his dressing gown.
- Finally, German electronic producer Lawrence releases a beat-free album of glistening exploratory moods.
The run up to Christmas wouldn’t be the run up to Christmas without a shed load of RE-ISSUES...and this is just the start!
- Bright and breezy Factory types Stockholm Monsters get the Captured tracks re-issue treatment.
- You can buy everything left-ish, Marxist indie poppers McCarthy ever did housed in a handy-sized box for just £18.
- Weatherbox continue to re-package the miserable body of work Echo & The Bunnymen have left us with, this time ‘Porcupine’ in 2LP hard-backed book edition.
- Fans of the Shins will want to check out James Mercer’s pre-Shins outfit Flake Music - sorta like the Shins but more indie rock.
- There’s a lost Sun Ra album, originally due back in ‘72 out now on vinyl.
- Velvet Underground’s sweet third album originally came out as a 1LP set. It’s now available as a 6CD set. Does that mean it's better?
- Fans of scary cults and out there experimental rock music should check out this Father Yod re-issue or failing that, this one.
- There’s an obscure and under-appreciated work from Brian Eno in collaboration with percussionist and trumpeter Jon Hassell.
- One of the best selling minimal electro comps we've ever had on pre order is now in - ‘Cold Waves Of Color’ won’t let you down as it's jammed full of unearthed treats.
- Fans of scary music should check out this three plus hours of scavenged hate that takes place three rather gruesome records by Kranium.
- Out there retro electronic madness by Tom Dissevelt on ‘Fantasy in Orbit’ .....and alongside Kid Baltan he introduces you to the ‘Fascinating World of Electronic Music’.
- Our endless quest to find the most ridiculous record ever released is possibly at a close with this Ski-A-Delics re-issue. The US experimentalists were dissatisfied by the ski’s main function in sport and instead whacked on some pickups and stuff and used them as musical instruments.
Small records are available from indie grunge upstarts Kid Wave the marvellous jangle poppers Triptides and bluesman Jack White who asks ‘Would You Fight For My Love?’ And...er.. that’s it. We’re finished for the week.
Tune in next time to find out who has triumphed in our coveted ‘Album of the Year’ prize and get ready for what probably will be the last exciting week of new releases before the Christmas run up really starts in earnest. Have great weekends and enjoy the cloud/rain.
Clint and the team