This Just In: Hairless Toys

Welcome to “This Just In” on its new day – Tuesday. We’ll have it going this way until mid-July when we switch to Fridays, ya know, just to keep you on your toes (and to keep up with “global release day” or whatever they’re calling it). Since I’m feeling especially whimsical today, let’s talk about a new pop record from one of the most (in my opinion) underrated artists working in that structure, Róisín Murphy. If you grew up when trip hop was a thing, you might remember her as the vocalist of Moloko. However, today marks the release of her third, stellar solo record. A less dancey outing than Ruby Blue (2005) and Overpowered (2007), Hairless Toys is Murphy’s first release in 8 years and is more stylistically diverse, showcasing the strength of her voice, literally and figuratively. This stuff is just way too deep to ever be mainstream/radio pop, at points focusing on the sociocultural origins of dance/pop music, and then questioning its current state. This stuff just isn’t for everyone – and that’s the point. But if you’re open to lighter sounds with much more beyond the surface (yes, this shit will actually make you think), check out Hairless Toys. And if you think I’m just hopped up on pixie stix (maybe I am), there’s a ton of other sounds for you to scope out in this week’s in-stock list. Wooooooo!

Róisín Murphy – Hairless Toys LP+CD
Listen: “Gone Fishing”

“For once the PR cliches of ‘eager anticipation’ and ‘welcome return’ are not misplaced. The unmistakable Róisín Murphy returns with her new album Hairless Toys. Her first album in 8 years, Hairless Toys is a career defining tour de force. Tipping its hat to the dark disco of European house music, Casablanca Records and Grace Jones, while seamlessly taking in the freedom and organic spirit of jazz, country and gospel.

The rich, expansive production – by Róisín’s long time musical collaborator Eddie Stevens – is full of inventive loops and unlikely hooks, a grand magical spell exemplified by album opener Gone Fishing. A song inspired by the film Paris Is Burning, where originality, invention and celebration are escapes from the ugly realities of the world around us, a place where ‘The practice of realness, feels so surreal.’

As Róisín explains – ‘This song was written after I watched the documentary film Paris Is Burning, having read an article which referenced it in a discussion about House music’s origins in black, gay culture. I was deeply moved by this film.’ ‘I had to run this far from home’ – it’s about the outcasts who could never fit into mainstream society and how they created a safe place in the drag ‘Ball’ scene of New York in the ’80s. ‘Will we live on? The children of La Beija’ refers to the ‘house’ of Pepper La Beija, who was one of the most notable figures on the scene, Pepper is also quoted in Malcolm McLaren’s song on the same subject ‘Deep In Vogue.’ The culture was a flamboyant reaction to persecution and disillusionment, the imagination and bravery of these kids is simply awe-inspiring. I envisioned Gone Fishing almost as a song from a Broadway musical version of this story. The making of one’s own world, a safer world and the creation of a new, better family in music or youth culture is a theme I touch upon elsewhere on my album Hairless Toys.'” -Play It Again Sam


Other toys – new releases, reissues and restocks…
Abram Shook – Landscape Dream LP*
Al Green – Greatest Hits LP
American Football – American Football 2LP
Amy Winehouse – Lioness: Hidden Treasures 2LP
Andy Stott – Faith In Strangers 2LP
Angel Olsen – Burn Your Fire For No Witness LP
Aphex Twin – Selected Ambient Works 85-92 2LP; Richard D. James Album LP
Apoptygma Berzerk – Imagine There’s No Lennon 2LP*; Unicorn 2LP*
Augustus Pablo – Ital Dub LP
Ausmuteants – Order Of Operation LP
Ava Luna – Infinite House LP
Basic Channel – Q Loop 12″; Lyot Rmx 12”
Beach Boys/Carl & The Passions – So Tough LP
Beach House – Devotion 2LP
Beirut – Gulag Orkestar LP; Lon Gisland LP; March Of The Zapotec & Realpeople Holland 2×12″
Bell Witch – Longing 2LP
Bjork – Vulnicura CD
Black Lips – 200 Million Thousand LP
Blanck Mass – Dumb Flesh 2LP*
Blind Shake – Fly Right 12”
Boards Of Canada – Hi Scores 12″
Bon Iver – Blood Bank 12″; Bon Iver LP; For Emma, Forever Ago LP
Brian Jonestown Massacre – Musique De Film Imagine LP*
Buena Vista Social Club – Lost & Found CD
Butthole Surfers – Hairway To Steven LP; Rembrandt Pussyhorse LP
Can – Monster Movie LP; Soundtracks LP
Caribou – Our Love LP
Cedric Myton & Congo – Image Of Africa LP
Charles Mingus – Mingus Ah Um LP
Chet Faker – Built On Glass 2LP
Craft Spells – Nausea LP
Culture – Harder Than The Rest LP
Danny Elfman – Beetlejuice OST LP*
Death – For The Whole World To See LP
Dick Dale – Surfer’s Choice LP
Dinosaur Jr. – Bug LP; Dinosaur LP
Disappears – Irreal LP
Django Reinhardt – Three Fingered Lightning LP
Dread Zeppelin – Re-Led-Ed (The Best Of) LP*
Drexciya – Harnessed The Storm 2LP
D’Angelo & The Vanguard – Black Messiah 2LP
Elliott Smith – XO LP
Elvis Depressedly – New Alhambra LP*
Eric Dolphy – The Latin Jazz Quintet LP
Etta James – Rocks The House LP; Tell Mama LP
Explosions In The Sky – Take Care 2LP; Those Who Tell The Truth… LP
Far – Inevitable Collapse 12”
Flume – Flume LP
Freddie Gibbs & Madlib – Pinata 2LP
Fumiya Tanaka – UFO Training EP 12”
Furry Lewis – In His Prime LP
Genius/GZA – Liquid Swords 2LP
Godspeed You Black Emperor – Asunder, Sweet And Other Distress LP
Guantanamo Baywatch – Darling… It’s Too Late LP*
Guided By Voices – Bee Thousand LP
HIM – Deep Shadows & Brilliant Highlights (Deluxe) 2LP*; Greatest Love Songs Vol. 666 LP*; Love Metal (Deluxe) 2LP*
Howlin’ Wolf – Howlin’ Wolf Album LP
Iron Maiden – The Number Of The Beast LP
Isis – Panopticon 2LP
J.Cole – 2014 Forest Hills Drive 2LP
Jawbreaker – Bivouac LP
John Cage – Early Electronic & Tape Music LP
John Coltrane & Don Cherry – The Avant-Garde LP
John Lee Hooker & Sticks McGhee – Highway Of Blues LP
Justice – Cross 2LP
Kanye West – My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy 3LP
Kenny Knight – Crossroads LP
Kenny Larkin – Dark Comedy Pt. 1 12”; Dark Comedy Pt. 2 12”
King Khan & BBQ Show – Bad News Boys LP; What’s For Dinner? LP
Lana Del Rey – Ultraviolence LP
LCD Soundsystem – London Sessions 2LP; This Is Happening 2LP
Lee Perry – Roast Fish Collie Weed & Corn Bread LP
Leonard Cohen – Can’t Forget CD*
Loren Connors – Blues LP*
Low – Things We Lost In The Fire 2LP
Marco Bailey – Lost Soul 12”
Mark Knopfler – Tracker 2LP*
Mark Ronson – Uptown Special LP
Marvin Gaye – I Want You LP
Melvins – Ozma + Bullhead 2LP
Miles Davis – Seven Steps To Heaven LP; Sketches Of Spain LP
Millie & Andrea – Drop The Vowels LP+CD
Minor Threat – First Two 7’s 12″; Out Of Step LP
Modest Mouse – Interstate 8 LP*
Muddy Waters – After The Rain LP
Nas – Illmatic LP
Neutral Milk Hotel – In The Aeroplane Over The Sea LP; On Avery Island LP
Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds – Henry’s Dream LP*; Murder Ballads 2LP*
Nick Drake – Pink Moon LP
Nick Klein – Failed Devotee 12” EP
Nicolas Jaar – Space Is Only Noise LP; A Time For Us 12”
Ninos Du Brasil – Aromobates NDB 12″
Nirvana – Live In Buenos Aires 1992 2LP; Nevermind LP
Novella – Land LP+7”*
Null – Almost LP
N.W.A. – Straight Outta Compton 2LP
Ornette Coleman – Ornette! LP
Otis Redding – Lonely & Blue LP; The Soul Album LP
Pallbearer – Foundations Of Burden 2LP
Panda Bear – Panda Bear Meets The Grim Reaper 2LP
Patrick Watson – Love Songs For Robots LP*
Pearl Jam – Ten 2LP
Perfect Pussy – Say Yes To Love LP
Pfarmers – Gunnera LP*
Portishead – Third LP
Prefuse 73 – Rivington Nao Rio LP
Prinzhorn Dance School – Remixes 12”*
Pulp – Different Class LP
Queen – Forever 4LP Box Set
Radiance – S/T 12”
Raime – Quarter Turns Over A Living Line 2LP
Raspberry Bulbs – Privacy LP
Ray Charles – Modern Sounds In Country & Western Music LP
Round 2 – New Day 12”
Rowland S. Howard – Pop Crimes LP
Rush – 2112 LP; Caress Of Steel LP; Fly By Night LP
Sam Cooke – Hit Kit LP
Schneider/Galluzzi – Mario 12”
Snoop Dogg – Bush CD
Songs:Ohia – Songs:Ohia LP
Sonic Youth – Bad Moon Rising LP; Daydream Nation 2LP; Goo 4LP; Rather Ripped LP; S/T 2LP
St. Paul & The Broken Bones – Half The City LP
Stereolab – Emperor Tomato Ketchup 2LP
Sufjan Stevens – Carrie & Lowell LP; Illinois 2LP; Seven Swans LP
Suicide – S/T LP; Half Alive LP
Surfer Blood – 1000 Palms CD*, LP*
Surgeon – Basictonal-remake 12”; Communications 2×12”
Tal National – Zoy Zoy LP
TECH N9NE – Special Effects 2LP*
Television Personalities – The Painted Word LP
The Cramps – Big Beat From Badsville LP; Smell Of Female LP; Stay Sick! LP
The Holydrug Couple – Moonlust LP*
The Juan Maclean – In A Dream 2LP
The Soft Moon – Deeper LP
The Tallest Man On Earth – Dark Bird Is Home LP*
The War On Drugs – Lost In The Dream 2LP
The Weather Station – Loyalty LP
The Wipers – Youth Of America LP
Thee Oh Sees – Floating Coffin LP; Help LP; Warm Slime LP
Thee Silver Mt. Zion Memorial Orchestra – Fuck Off, Get Free… LP
Thievery Corporation – The Richest Man In Babylon 2LP
Tim Hecker – Virgins 2LP
Tori Amos – Little Earthquakes LP
Trickfinger – S/T 2LP
Twerps – Range Anxiety LP
Twilight Ritual – The Ritual LP
Ty Segall – Lemons LP
Various – A Fistful Of Fuzz LP
Various – Attack Dub LP
Various – Drop On Down In Florida 2CD+Book
Various – Electronic Toys 2 LP
Various – Electronic Toys LP
Various – Molam: Thai Vol. 1 2LP
Various – Molam: Thai Vol. 2 2LP
Various – Mystic Soundz From India (Lost Field Recordings ’68-’79) LP
Various – Ska From The Vaults Of WIRL Records LP
Various – The Music Of Tanzania 2LP
Various – The Traveling Archive: Folk Music From Bengal LP
Velvet Underground – Loaded LP; S/T LP
Walls – Urals LP
Wand – Golem LP
White Eyes – S/T LP*
Wovenhand – S/T LP*
Wu-Tang Clan – Enter The Wu-Tang (36 Chambers) LP

*Indicates new release or new reissue