This Just In: Droney/Twangy Collaborations

There are two new collaborative records we have NOT been able to stop playing at the shop. High Aura’d & Mike Shiflet’s Awake and Steve Gunn & The Black Twig Pickers’ Seasonal Hire are both pure listening bliss! Awake is a noisy, dark storm of an affair, while Seasonal Hire relies on traditional twang to carry its pulse. Both are dark and immersive in their own ways, and very immediate, as they were both recorded live and incorporate little to no edits. Info and sound samples are below, along with this week’s in-stock list.

High Aura’d & Mike Shiflet – Awake LP:
Listen to the whole thing!
“Awake is a collaboration between noise veteran Mike Shiflet and guitarist John Kolodij (aka High Aura’d), and was recorded over the course of three autumn days in Kolodij’s Rhode Island studio. This isn’t your expected by-email collaboration though; rather, the two sat together in the same room with amps humming and strings vibrating, letting the space and the physicality dictate the music.

The sessions were improvisational in nature, and as the recordings were cleaned up and edited, only sparse field recordings were added to enhance the live takes. It’s a record the might sound electronic in parts – indeed echoes of Tim Hecker or Yellow Swans are present throughout – but has the guitar at its core.

Awake is a direct descendent of Godspeed You! Black Emperor or even Glenn Branca, but has been smudged, distorted and delayed beyond recognition. Whats left are traces – the ghosts and outlines of songs, trapped in a fog of white noise and overdrive – and the end result is disarmingly serene.” -Type

Steve Gunn & The Black Twig Pickers – Seasonal Hire LP
Listen: “Trailways Ramble”
“Steve Gunn and The Black Twig Pickers are key figures in the current resurgence of American traditional and folk music. Gunn’s songwriting and inventive guitar playing are driven by his restless mind, having released 9 solo and collaborative albums and appeared as a guest on nearly as many since his debut in 2007. The Black Twig Pickers play a fervent form of traditional music from their Appalachian homeland. The group performs often forgotten traditional songs, especially from their Virginia stomping-ground, creating a living history of old time music. They also have an ongoing residency at the legendary Floyd Country Store. Their individual works have received extensive praise from Rolling Stone, NPR, the BBC, Mojo, Uncut, Maverick, Elmore, and Pitchfork. Seasonal Hire, their first full-length collaborative release, combines Gunn’s circular, meditative guitar playing with the Twigs’ energetic mastery of old time instrumentation in a purely acoustic environment resulting in a warm, energetic, and exceptional album.

Seasonal Hire collects four original tunes and one traditional piece, with Gunn and The Black Twig Pickers’ Mike Gangloff and Sally Anne Morgan all taking turns with lead vocal and songwriting. Like all of the Twigs’ albums, it was recorded live, without overdubs or amplification. Gunn fell right in with this aesthetic and threw down guitar parts like he’d been sparring with banjos and fiddles for years. The majority of the album was recorded at Joseph Dejarnette’s Studio 808a in rural Topeco, Virgina, where Gunn and Gangloff recorded Melodies for a Savage Fix, an improvisational masterpiece of pan-cultural meditations. ‘Echoes of Melodies’ can be heard on Seasonal Hire’s titular b-side, an extended, beautiful ramble equally indebted to old time music and Indian ragas. Additional recording was done closer to Gunn’s New York home at the famed Black Dirt Studios. Black Dirt has been the home for many groundbreaking records by artists such as Charlie Parr, Jack Rose, Bill Orcutt, Expo 70, and Tom Carter. The album was mastered by Patrick Klem. Seasonal Hire shows the impressive range of some of the most talented and imaginative musicians that have made a name for themselves experimenting in folk forms today.” -Thrill Jockey

Get high (aura’d) on new releases, reissues and restocks…
A Tribe Called Quest – People’s Instinctive Travels and the Paths Of Rhythm 2LP
Aphex Twin – Computer Controlled Acoustic Instruments Pt2 EP 12″
Beach Boys – Pet Sounds LP
Best Girl Athlete – Carve Every Word LP
Big Black – Songs About Fucking LP
Billie Holiday – Body & Soul LP; Lady Sings The Blues LP
Black Keys – Brothers LP
Bob Marley & The Wailers – Exodus LP
Bob Marley – Legend (The Best Of) LP
Bonobo – Black Sands 2LP; Days To Come 2LP; Flashlight EP 12″; Ten Tigers EP 12″
Broadcast – Haha Sound 2LP; Tender Buttons LP; The Future Crayon 2LP; The Noise Made By People 2LP
Budos Band – Budos Band II LP; Burnt Offering LP
Burial – Rival Dealer 12″; Untrue 2LP
Can – Ege Bamyasi LP; Tago Mago 2LP
Caribou – Our Love LP
Charlotte Gainsbourg – 5:55 2LP+CD; IRM 2LP+CD
Cut Copy – Zonoscope LP
D’Angelo & The Vanguard – Black Messiah 2LP
Daft Punk – Discovery 2LP
Darkthrone – Plageuwielder LP
Death Cab For Cutie – Narrow Stairs LP
Depeche Mode – Violator LP
Dick Diver – Melbourne, Florida LP
DJ Rashad – Double Cup 2LP
Ed Sheeran – + LP; X 2LP
Ekoplekz – Entropic EP 12”
Elliott Smith – Either/Or LP
Ennio Morricone – The Good, The Bad & The Ugly OST LP
Fences – Lesser Oceans LP
Flying Lotus – You’re Dead 2LP
J.J. Cale – Rewind: Unreleased Recordings LP
Jeff Buckley – Grace LP
Johnny Cash – At San Quentin LP; Rockabilly Blues LP
John Coltrane & Don Cherry – The Avant-Garde LP
Kind Of Like Spitting – Bridges Worth Burning LP
Lou Reed – Transformer LP
Machinedrum – Vapor City 2LP
Marilyn Manson – The Pale Emperor 2LP
Matthew E. White – Fresh Blood LP
Morrissey – Vauxhall And I LP; Your Arsenal LP
Mumford & Sons – Sigh No More LP
Nas – Illmatic LP
Nightmares On Wax – In A Space Outta Sound 2LP; Mind Elevation 2LP
N.W.A. – Straight Outta Compton 2LP
Otis Redding – Dictionary Of Soul LP
Patsy Cline – Walking After Midnight LP
Phoenix – Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix LP
Ramones – Ramones Mania LP
Rhye – Woman LP
Ryan Adams – S/T LP
Sam Prekop – The Republic LP
Sam Smith – In The Lonely Hour LP
Sarah Bethe Nelson – Fast-Moving Clouds LP
Smashing Pumpkins – Pisces Iscariot 2LP
Steve Gunn & The Black Twig Pickers – Seasonal Hire LP
Swervedriver – I Wasn’t Born To Lose You 2LP
Talking Heads – Remain In Light LP; The Name Of This Band Is Talking Heads 2LP
Tame Impala – Innerspeaker 2LP
The Minus 5 – Dungeon Golds LP
The Smiths – Hatful Of Hollow LP
The Unicorns – Who Will Cut Our Hair When We’re Gone? LP
Thelonious Monk Orchestra – At Town Hall LP
Thelonious Monk – Paris 1969 2LP
Thievery Corporation – Culture Of Fear 2LP; The Cosmic Game 2LP; The Mirror Conspiracy 2LP; The Richest Man In Babylon 2LP
Various – Bossa Nova Vol. 2 2LP
Various – Ghostbusters OST LP
Various – Studio One Jump-Up 2LP
Various – Studio One Women 2LP
Youmi Zouma – EP II 10”
Velvet Underground – S/T LP
Will Butler – Policy CD, LP
Woody Guthrie – This Machine Kills Fascists LP
Wu-Tang – A Better Tomorrow 2LP