Why shop with us? 0113 245 4399

Weekly Update Kid Congo & The Pink Monkey Birds, Celer, Wicked Lester, Milieu, Ducktails, and more...

Afternoon, Normcepticles, I hope you’ve got through the cold snap we’ve had this week unscathed and are excited to learn about the latest week in audio retail from your favourite indie stockists, ‘cause that’s what’s about to happen.

We’ve got some pretty exciting LPs this week as usual. For starters, The Heads’ axe-mangler Paul Allen has an album of far-out psychedelic rituals as Anthroprophh on the mighty Rocket Recordings, and Canadian droner Kyle Bobby Dunn has a gorgeous LP of slow swelling minimal on Komino, who have also sent us a gorgeously packaged one-sided LP of dark ambience from Alex Durlak and a hypnotic bit of harmonium-based neoconcrete from the super-team of Chris Dooks & Machinefabriek. We’ve got new cassettes from Celer and Decimus, there’s a gorgeous wooden 3CD ‘Ambiente’ box replete with art cards and over three and a half hours of music by Fluorescent Grey, and a 3LP Aimer et Perdre box with artwork by Robert Crumb! We’ve got three new ultra-rare reissues from noise specialists Urashima this week, too. Two of murky tape loop weirdness from Maurizio Bianchi’s Sacher-Pelz alter-ego, and a particularly provocative one from the legendary Mauthausen Orchestra.

There’s some amazing spacekraut rituals from The Holydrug Couple and Follakzoid on Sacred Bones, the prolific Omar Rodriguez Lopez shakes off the band break-up blues with a surprising LP of dark, woozy experimental synthpop with Butcherette/Bosnian Rainbow Teri Gender-Bender on vocal duties, Scott Walker’s ‘Tilt’ has been repressed, if you’re into your indie-pop you might be interested in new LPs from The History of Apple Pie and Widowspeak, I’m very impressed with the ‘80s DC dark alien P-funk-inspired madness of Em’s excellent Wicked Witch reissue, Ducktails showcases his synthier new direction on a new album, Jar Moff has some weird darkness on Pan, Tenebrous Liar have a ridiculously limited self released LP of noise-rock and moody crooning, and the prolific Milieu has another CD for us too. Other artists with albums out this week include Tetuzi Akiyama, Chris Weisman, Anla Courtis/Okkyung Lee/C Spencer Yeh/Jon Wesseltoft, Josef Van Wissem & Jim Jarmusch, Loren Connors, Karthala 72, Bill Fay, Delphic, Speck Mountain, Marc Carroll, The Ruby Suns, Sonny Smith, Local Natives, Indians, bRUNA, Yoshi Wada, The Walkmen, Big Harp and Shugo Tokumaru.

It’s a good week for compilations too. For starters we’ve got the second instalment of the excellent ‘Music From Saharan Cellphones’ series comprised of varied MP3s harvested from people’s phones in Mali, various earnest folksters take on the songs of Tim Hardin in a tribute compilation, Soul Jazz have a ‘Studio One Ironsides’ anthology, forgotten instruments are revitalised by an impressive line-up on Incunabulum’s ‘New Music For Old Instruments’, and last but not least the ever-awesome Sublime Frequencies have compiled some Korean 78s on their ‘Scattered Melodies: Korean Kayagum Sanjo’ LP.

As for the singles, the immortal reactivated Man Or Astro-Man? continue their series of 7”s on Chunklet reminding us why their brand of sci-fi indie-surf has always been so much better than anybody else’s, unpredictable art-punk types Sauna Youth have an infectious C86-influenced cover of a Pissed Jeans song on their new seven, Spatial has a pair of twin 12”s, noise pop upstarts The Men have are back with a new 7”, while on In The Red, Kid Congo Powers & The Pink Monkey Birds have an ace new 45 of sleaze garage with a screenprinted sleeve and a Seeds cover on the flip. Other singles have arrived courtesy of Tom Morgan, Tullycraft, Frightened Rabbit, Cold Wire, Veronica Falls, Guided By Voices, Jesse Boykins III & Melo-X, The Bug, The Courteeners, Wicked Lester and Pictish Trail/Kid Canaveral!

Heatwave next week apparently, you should celebrate the end of the cold snap with some new records.

Mikeson and the Normonauts


Best records this week

According to our review team at least...

Toro Y Moi

Anything In Return

9/10 from Clinton

Whilst clearing out the loft the other day, I stuck on Justin Timberlake’s ‘Justified’ album and wondered why no-one has made an album quite so good since. T...read on »

The Charlottes

Things Come Apart

9/10 from Phil

Well I’m tearing myself away from the last Beak> album (still...) to write some words about the new spanky reissue of ‘Things Come Apart’ by The Charlotte...read on »

Shoc Corridor

Artificial Horizon

9/10 from Mike

This 12” on Testtoon Records unearths a classic cut by early ‘80s techno pioneers Shoc Corridor, which is then given the remix treatment by Mordant Music, Bepotel ...read on »

Kyle Bobby Dunn

In Miserum Stercus

9/10 from ReviewBot300

Minimalist droner Kyle Bobby Dunn has spent years honing his patient, celestial craft, carving precise melodic swells of treated guitar, and this new LP is no different, altho...read on »

Sauna Youth

False Jesii Pt. II / Oh Joel

9/10 from Mike

Sauna Youth are one of the most interesting UK indie rock bands doing the rounds at the moment and I’m never really sure what to expect from them so imagine my surprise ...read on »

Man Or Astro-Man?

Analog Series Vol.2

9/10 from Mike

Exciting times! Today we’ve got the second instalment in the reactivated Man Or Astro-Man?’s glorious comeback, with three more tracks of sci-fi indie-surf mayhem....read on »

Various

Music from Saharan Cellphones Volume 2

9/10 from Mike

It’s a nice surprise to come to work today and find this LP on the review pile. The first instalment is a regular fixture in my house, providing as it does a varied snap...read on »

Pretty

Mustache In Your Face

9/10 from Mike

The always excellent Numero Group start up a new 7” offshoot where they unearth lost gems from great lost one-single bands in gatefold 2x7” packages with a couple ...read on »

Wicked Witch

Chaos: 1978-86

9/10 from ReviewBot300

The sticker on the front of this CD screams “Obscure evil psycho machine-funk from ‘80s Washington D.C. Psychedelic madness!” which sounds promising. I&rsquo...read on »

Anthroprophh

Anthroprophh

9/10 from Mike

I know from our sales figures that a lot of you are already pretty into cult UK psych titans The Heads, so you probably don’t need me to tell you that Anthroprophh is th...read on »

Masayoshi Fujita

Stories

9/10 from Ian

“Once upon a time, there were mountains, a lake, a river and a waterfall in the forest.”So begin the sleeve notes on this gorgeous twinkle fest of an album, and it...read on »

GNOD

Chaudelande

9/10 from Li'l Biz

This is Li'l Bi's review for the original wax of Vol. 1 Everyone loves Gnod right? These Manchester lads have got the balance between freeform improvised, Krautrock groove an...read on »

Fluorescent Grey

Ambiente

9/10 from Ant

We are very fortunate to be able to bring you this Norman Records exclusive. A co-release between the Record Label Records imprint and Cataclyst. A hand numbered edition of 10...read on »

Scott Walker

Tilt

9/10 from Ian

Well, I’ve been given the mammoth task of reviewing this absolutely now legendary album by Scott Walker, Tilt. Although many people think they are familiar with Scott&rs...read on »

The Holydrug Couple

Noctuary

9/10 from Brian

I didn't like this album particularly at first, I thought it was a bit "whatevers" in fact. Then me got um 'Noctuary' on me massif stereo at home innit and started to soak up ...read on »

JK Flesh/ Prurient

Worship is The Cleansing Of the Imagination

9/10 from Phil

So I’m sat here at home with a large cup of sweets (yes a cup), cos I’m essentially a huge disturbed looking child and it feels good. Soundtracking my sugary fun i...read on »

Various

Scattered Melodies: Korean Kayagum Sanjo

9/10 from Phil

OK I know nothing about vintage Korean Kayagum Sanjo music from the 1920s-1950s. I bet you don’t either, unless you’re Robert Millis who has obsessively been colle...read on »

Jar Moff

Commercial Mouth

9/10 from Ant

This is the vinyl debut for Jar Moff and is my introduction to the artist whom previously has only released digital files. I've played this a few times now and it becomes incr...read on »

Omar Rodriguez Lopez

Octopus Kool Aid

9/10 from ReviewBot300

With the demise of the Mars Volta on everyone’s lips, the ever prolific O-Rod drops his latest solo LP this week, with his cousin Marcel handling drums and programming a...read on »

Yoshi Wada

Earth Horns with Electronic Drones

9/10 from Ant

Over the last few years drone music seems to have been slowly gaining momentum and popularity. At one point the market become so over saturated it seemed like every other rele...read on »

Esben And The Witch

Wash The Sins Not Only The Face

8/10 from Clinton

Matador...Matador???? Just another example of how, despite having somehow reached the age of 40, I know utterly nothing. My life is a series of terrible mistakes and unfortuna...read on »

Various

Pop Ambient 2013

8/10 from Clinton

If one thing in life is dependable it’s...my cat...oh and the Pop Ambient compilations. They must have been doing these for...oh how many years? As I said in a previous ...read on »

Al Cisneros

Dismas / Version

8/10 from Clinton

From the sleeve its almost impossible to tell what this is. Thank god for the press release which tells me that it’s the bassist from Om. Phil insists that this sounds l...read on »

Kwes

Rollerblades

8/10 from Clinton

Described in the press release as ‘the Brian Eno of experimental UK pop’ (though isn’t Brian Eno the Brian Eno of experimental UK pop?) it gives you some ind...read on »

Jeremy Greenspan / Laurie Spiegel

Drums&Drums&Drums

8/10 from Clinton

I sit with my head gently lolling in my hands, the cold working its way into every pore. Outside the window the trees sway gently in the frozen breeze, as if waiting for somet...read on »

Tenebrous Liar

End Of The Road

8/10 from ReviewBot300

Snapper to the stars Steve Gullick’s music band Tenebrous Liar have been slogging away for years now on the thankless indie rock treadmill, and they’re back to pro...read on »

Alex Durlak

Seconds

8/10 from ReviewBot300

This is a beautiful looking thing. It’s on one-sided white vinyl with a story extract printed on the other side, housed in a fancy weird sleeve with one translucent side...read on »

Chris Dooks and Machinefabriek

The Eskdalemuir Harmonium

8/10 from Mike

Sound artists Chris Dooks and Machinefabriek lock horns on this LP, on which they celebrate all things harmonium, in particular a decaying one in Scotland which lends the albu...read on »

The Pictish Trail

Secret Sound Vol. 2

8/10 from Mike

My only previous exposure to this Pictish Trail chappie, alter-ego of Fence honcho Johnny Lynch, was on a wacky album he did not too long ago which contained a gruelling 50 30...read on »

The Pictish Trail

Secret Soundz Vol. 1 & 2

8/10 from Mike

[This is what our Mike wrote about Vol. 2]   My only previous exposure to this Pictish Trail chappie, alter-ego of Fence honcho Johnny Lynch, was on a wacky album he di...read on »

Sacher-Pelz (Maurizio Bianchi)

Cainus

8/10 from ReviewBot300

We’ve got a more mega-limited LPs in from the good noise historians at Urashima and this is one of two made by Maurizio Bianchi in 1979 under his Sacher-Pelz alias. To m...read on »

Rick Redbeard

No Selfish Heart

8/10 from ReviewBot300

This solo album from The Phantom Band’s Rick Redbeard has apparently been eight years in the making, gestating in his parents’ Aberdeenshire house until he was rea...read on »

Kid Congo & The Pink Monkey Birds

Conjure Man

8/10 from ReviewBot300

Kid Congo Powers, veteran of every good sleazy rock’n’roll band ever, is back this week with a 7” on In The Red which comes in sleeves which have been screen...read on »

California X

California X

8/10 from Mike

Ah, this is blasting away the cobwebs. California X, confusingly actually from Amherst, Mass, rocking out with eight perfectly formed slabs of grungey power-pop with Dinosaur ...read on »

Speck Mountain

Badwater

8/10 from Ian

The third release for Chicagoans Speck Mountain isn’t that dissimilar to their other two albums to be honest but that’s not such a bad thing really, if it ain&rsqu...read on »

Follakzoid

II

8/10 from Ian

This is some quality dronerock from Follakzoid’s second full length, this four piece from Santiago Chile really know how to press the right buttons (and knobs!). Opening...read on »

Jozef Van Wissem & Jim Jarmusch

Apokatastasis

8/10 from Ian

The Dutch Lute player has teamed up with Jim Jarmusch again on this glorious album, this is Medieval with a capital M, if you could imagine the Jim O’Rourke/Chris Brokaw...read on »

Jake Blanchard

Archaic Practices

8/10 from Phil

Jake Blanchard is a visual artist who’s been designing all things to do with music and the odd skate park for a while now. If you’re not familiar with his styles t...read on »

Ducktails

The Flower Lane

8/10 from Clinton

There were audible gasps when the promo of the lead track from Real Estate sidesman Matt Mondanile’s new opus was played here at the towers. It has been known for the wr...read on »

Various

Reason To Believe - The Songs Of Tim Hardin

8/10 from Clinton

During a recent crisis, I drove across the pennines with Tim Hardin’s ‘Hang Onto A Dream-  The Verve Recordings’ on repeat. Partly as I just couldn&rsqu...read on »

Frightened Rabbit

Woodpile

8/10 from Clinton

Frightened Rabbit are on Atlantic Records eh? Home of Hall & Oates, Steve ‘Silk’ Hurley and The Pointer Sisters. Who’d have thought? They respond by prod...read on »

Veronica Falls

Teenage

8/10 from Clinton

If you haven’t wept uncontrollably for a while, get onto Youtube and look up the early Kirsty MacColl singles ‘They Don’t Know’ and ‘Terry’...read on »

The Bug

Hardcore Lover

8/10 from Clinton

I’ve spent the last week thinking I’m about to get ill, to the point of annoying everyone around me. Yesterday I spent 30 minutes in the same room as a man sneezin...read on »

Lil Silva

The Split/Venture

8/10 from Clinton

Sadly, I am not street. I’m more of a toasted teacake, cup of tea and double cardigan man. Hence, when I tried to find this on our website I was spelling their name &lsq...read on »

Actress

Silver Cloud

8/10 from Clinton

New 12” from the much heralded Actress, in fact not an actress at all but a man called Darren. The opening track starts with a clicky sound which goes on indefinitely. I...read on »

Featured albums

Kid Congo & The Pink Monkey Birds
Fluorescent Grey
Guided By Voices
Decimus
Alex Durlak
Celer
Milieu
The Walkmen
Sacher-Pelz (Maurizio Bianchi)
Mauthausen Orchestra
Yoshi Wada
Big Harp
Sacher-Pelz (Maurizio Bianchi)
Jar Moff
Kyle Bobby Dunn
Chris Dooks and Machinefabriek
The Pictish Trail / Kid Canaveral
Tenebrous Liar
Life In Film
Delphic
Frightened Rabbit
Anthroprophh
Tullycraft
Follakzoid
Widowspeak
The Men
The Holydrug Couple
Sauna Youth
The History Of Apple Pie
The Ruby Suns
Local Natives
Various
The Bug
Marc Carroll
Sonny Smith
Ducktails
Indians
Veronica Falls
Various
Jesse Boykins III & MeLo-X
Courteeners
bRUNA
Shugo Tokumaru
Wicked Lester
Aimer et Perdre
Anla Courtis, Okkyung Lee, C.Spencer Yeh, Jon Wesseltoft
Various
Various
Speck Mountain
Wicked Witch
Omar Rodriguez Lopez
Karthala 72
Tom Morgan
Jozef Van Wissem & Jim Jarmusch
Various
Tetuzi Akiyama
Man Or Astro-Man?
Spatial
Spatial
Loren Connors
Chris Weisman
Bill Fay
Scott Walker