This Just In: Sons Of Soul

Tony! Toni! Toné – Sons Of Soul 2LP
Listen: “If I Had No Loot”
Essential reissue of a landmark 90’s R&B album! There’s a reason you don’t readily find used vinyl copies of Tony! Toni! Toné’s Sons Of Soul even though the album sold in the millions – it’s something most people have kept in their collections since ’93. Now, nearly 25 years later it’s available on vinyl again, and this pressing will probably get scooped up fairly quickly. Considered their best album by critics and fans alike (although they didn’t make that many albums), what’s truly remarkable about Sons Of Soul is that the band made it exactly the way they wanted despite their preferences going against the grain of most other 90’s pop/R&B acts, both stylistically and logistically. None of their contemporaries were self-producing their own albums, let alone writing/arranging all the material and playing the principle instruments live and in the studio. While these choices may have proved to be hurdles for the group, their uncompromising vision was documented fully on their terms, and the album’s strength is undeniable. And the jams hold up! Come pick this one up before it’s gone again, and check out this week’s in-stock list below AND the immense new collection of previously-love jazz, world, funk and more hitting the shelves in the coming days! -MLE

Music Musique μ-Ziq – new releases, reissues & restocks…

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This Just In: Asphixiation

Hell yeah – this year’s output of incredible Australian reissues from Chapter keeps flowing! A couple months ago they dropped David Chesworth’s 50 Synthesizer Greats, which we played at the shop more than most reissues of the past 5+ years. Now Asphixiation’s What Is This Thing Called ‘Disco’? will join its ranks and be played over and over again, possibly to the point where regular customers might think it’s the ONLY thing we play now. Yes, it’s that good (if you’re into electronic-y post-punk). It’s dark, dancy, edgy, and sexy – full-frontal cover included. Take a listen below, contemplate disco, and rejoice with us over the superb work Chapter is doing. Also, check mo’ in-stocks in the weekly list below the naked album cover! -MLE

Asphixiation – What Is This Thing Called Disco? LP
“Chapter is excited to announce the first ever reissue of What Is This Thing Called ‘Disco’? , a landmark Australian post-punk artefact originally released in 1981 as an LP with accompanying 12” single. One of the first records from the Australian underground to incorporate disco elements into the reigning post-punk asethetic, What Is This Thing Called ‘Disco’? sits alongside records by international counterparts like Flying Lizards or Yellow Magic Orchestra in its combination of art school formalism and dancefloor hedonism. Melbourne artist Philip Brophy is best known for his work with 70s/80s art-punk provocateurs Tsk Tsk Tsk (pronounced with three clicks of the tongue). Asked to stage an exhibition in Melbourne in 1980, Brophy decided to put disco into an art gallery context. He created ‘fake’ band Asphixiation to mime on stage along to tape, and recorded What Is This Thing Called ‘Disco’? as the backing tracks.

In 1981, iconic Melbourne label Missing Link released a two song 12”, and later that year the band released the album themselves, repressing the 12” and including it in the package. 36 years later, Chapter has lovingly remastered and reissued the album + single package, with new liner notes and photos.”

What’s this thing called new releases, reissues & restocks?…

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This Just In: The Book Of Mormon

I still haven’t seen The Book Of Mormon, but I’ve listened to the soundtrack A LOT. If you’ve heard the music or been lucky enough to actually see the production, you know how brilliant it is. What’s even more brilliant is that they were clever enough to press the Original Broadway Cast Recording to vinyl, in a deluxe package as a 2LP with golden-colored discs; embossed album cover artwork; a full-color, LP-size booklet, including liner notes by Frank Rich and complete lyrics; never-before-seen production photos and set model illustrations; an exclusive set of removable stickers featuring characters from the show; and an MP3 download card for the full digital cast recording. For those of us who still haven’t seen it, this is pretty close (and much cheaper) than a flight and/or tickets. Obviously this package is limited, so haul ass down here to baptize yourself in gold. -MLE

Making things up again – new releases, reissues & restocks…

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This Just In: Helium

Mary Timony and Helium are often overlooked in the (indie)rock world at large, but all actual fans are die-hard. I’ve either encountered “who’s that?” or “Mary Timony is one of the most important musicians of the 90’s,” but no in- between. So here we go with an excellent expanded reissue campaign from Matador that’s suitable for beginners and even has a collection of rarities for the die-hards. One listen and you can taste Timony’s influence in so much of modern indie rock. If you’re into that sound NOW, go in reverse and learn the framework. -MLE

Helium – Ends With And 2LP, The Dirt Of Luck LP, The Magic City & No Guitars 2LP
Listen: “Pat’s Trick”

“No history of American indie should be written without a chapter on Mary Timony, who managed to straddle multiple worlds—among them Boston’s college-borne rock realm and Dischord’s DC-based DIY scene—over the course of her early career. In the Boston band Helium, Timony took center stage, playing rock and roll that was anything but straightforward… and finally their influential output is being released on May 19th on vinyl after a decade of being out of print. In addition to the reissues of 1995’s renowned The Dirt Of Luck and 1997’s The Magic City (bundled on a double LP with the No Guitars EP), Helium and Matador Records will also release a brand new collection of rarities, b-sides, and unreleased demos on a 19-track double LP (with 5 bonus downloads) titled Ends With And.” -Matador

Lift off – new releases, reissues & restocks…

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This Just In: The Bob’s Burgers Music Album

Sup Pop pulled out all the stops with The Bob’s Burgers Music Album, especially the box set version. This thing is INSANE! Besides getting 107 songs from the first 6 seasons of the show (and 5 “Bobs Buskers” covers) on “condiment colored” vinyl, it comes with a bonus 7″, hardcover illustrated lyrics book, sheet music sampler, six pc. sticker pack, three 24″x36″ posters and one iron-on patch. The price is also incredible considering all the extras – easily one of the most comprehensive, bang-for-your-buck box sets I’ve ever seen. And if you’re not a super fan but still want the tunes, the 3LP and 2CD versions are also excellent quality and value. Pick up a copy today and get ready to lift up the skirt of the night!!! -MLE

The Bob’s Burgers Music Album 3LP Box Set, 3LP, 2CD
Bob’s Burgers premiered on the Fox network January 2011, and quickly became one of the most watched series on television. After enjoying the highest-rated new season premiere of the 2010-11 season, Bob’s Burgers quickly settled into an average viewership of over 4 million per episode. The show has won an Emmy award and been nominated five times, including a current nomination for Outstanding Animated Program. It has inspired many popular spinoff items, including a recent, best-selling cookbook. With the seventh season currently in progress and airing through May 2017, Bob’s Burgers’ cultural influence only grows.”

Butts, butts, butts, butts – new releases, reissues & restocks…

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This Just In: Overload

IT’S A NEW RELEASE OVERLOAD!!! Seriously – this is a mega-stacked release day. To feature just one thing wouldn’t suffice and to feature all the notable releases would take forever, so instead you can just be excited that (probably) one of your favorite bands is releasing something today. This list includes The Afghan Whigs, Alice Coltrane, Bibio, Forest Swords, Luke Vibert, Mac Demarco, Slowdive (first new music in TWENTY-TWO years!), and so much more. Plus a huge in-stock list (below), and, yes I’ve said this before – we’re putting out more used titles on the shelves than ever! Stop by and leave happy. -MLE

Records make ears happy – new releases, reissues & restocks…

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This Just In: Bad Neighbor

At this point Madlib shouldn’t need an introduction. He makes even the busiest, most productive people I know question what they do with their time. Seems every few months or so he’s dropping something leaps and bounds above and beyond most active hip-hop/electronic producers – and he’s been doing it at a steady pace for like 20 years. Whether it’s collaborative, solo, or under an array of pseudonyms, he’s everywhere, whether you know it or not. Despite the fact that he’s already infiltrated your head space (maybe even against your will), I want to point out the latest Madlib drop, Bad Neighbor Instrumentals. This is the verse-less version of the 2015 MED/Blu/Madlib Bad Neighbor album, which is also excellent. Stylistically, the “instrumentals” range from hip-hop to funk, r&B, soul, and downtempo jazziness, all with steady low end, well-placed samples, and cuts/arrangements that keep each listen fresh. Check it out for yourself below, and if you’re head’s not nodding in the first 20 seconds, then I’ve got nothing (well, besides an excellent in-stock list, also below). -MLE

Madlib – Bad Neighbor Instrumentals 2LP
Listen: Full Album!
“Bang Ya Head Entertainment is gearing up to release the Instrumentals to the critically acclaimed Bad Neighbor LP by MED and Blu. All beats produced by Madlib. 15 banging instrumentals and 3 bonus beats for your enjoyment. Everything Madlib creates is innovating but the production on Bad Neighbor LP is timeless.” -Fat Beats

Like a good neighbor – new releases, reissues & restocks…

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This Just In: 50 Song Memoir

The other day I said I’d love to watch Stephen Merritt and Robert Pollard arm wrestle. I’ve been on a steady diet of Pollard the past few weeks with the Circus Devils’ Laughs Last and Laughs Best releases, and now Merritt’s dropped a 50 song beast on us. I suppose America’s two most prolific songwriters will be arm wrestling, in my brain at least. So yeah, Magnetic Fields sees your 69 Love Songs and raises with 50 Song Memoir. Sure, it’s technically less songs, but it has a lot of bonus content like interviews and facsimile hand-written lyrics, making it a worthy addition to the MF cannon. Check out the video for “’68 A Cat Called Dionysus” below and read more about Merritt’s incredible musical autobiography, along with our weekly in-stock list! -MLE

Magnetic Fields – 50 Song Memoir 5LP Box Set
Listen/Watch: “’68 A Cat Called Dionysus”
“Nonesuch Records releases the Magnetic Fields’ 50 Song Memoir on March 10, 2017. The five-CD / five-LP set chronicles the 50 years of songwriter Stephin Merritt’s life with one song per year; it was produced by Stephin Merritt with additional production by Thomas Bartlett and Charles Newman.

Merritt began recording on his 50th birthday: February 9, 2015. Unlike his previous work, the lyrics on 50 Song Memoir are nonfiction—in Merritt’s words, ‘a mix of autobiography (bedbugs, Buddhism, buggery) and documentary (hippies, Hollywood, hyperacusis).’ As he says in the album’s liner note interview with his friend, the author Daniel Handler, ‘I am the least autobiographical person you are likely to meet. I will probably not write any more true songs after this than I did before, but it’s been interesting working on it.’

In addition to his vocals on all 50 songs, Merritt plays more than one hundred instruments on 50 Song Memoir, ranging from ukulele to piano to drum machine to abacus. In concert, the music will be played and sung by a newly expanded Magnetic Fields septet in a stage set featuring 50 years of artifacts both musical (vintage computers, reel-to-reel tape decks, newly invented instruments), and decorative (tiki bar, shag carpet, vintage magazines for the perusal of idle musicians). The seven performers each play seven different instruments, either traditional (cello, charango, clavichord) or invented in the last 50 years (Slinky guitar, Swarmatron, synthesizer). The stage extravaganza will be directed by the award-winning Jose Zayas (Love in the Time of Cholera, Aunt Julia and the Scriptwriter).

To date, Stephin Merritt has written and recorded twelve Magnetic Fields albums, including the popular and critically acclaimed 69 Love Songs. A song from that record, ‘The Book of Love,’ has been covered by Peter Gabriel and has appeared in numerous TV shows and films; notably, the Nairobi Chamber Orchestra performed the song at an official state dinner in Kenya, before Presidents Barack Obama and Uhuru Kenyatta delivered their toasts. Merritt has also composed original music and lyrics for several music theater pieces, including an off-Broadway stage musical of Neil Gaiman’s novel Coraline, for which he received an Obie Award. In 2014, Merritt composed songs and background music for the first musical episode of public radio’s This American Life. Stephin Merritt also releases albums under the band names the 6ths, the Gothic Archies, and Future Bible Heroes.” -Nonesuch

Stranger than fiction – new releases, reissues and restocks…

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This Just In: World Eater

I’m not entirely sure how to categorize the new Blanck Mass album without simultaneously being too broad and too specific. Sure, “electronic” conveys something, but where to next? Glitch, noise, ambient, darkwave, industrial, IDM, techno, even some straight-up house-esque stippling. It really is all over the place stylistically but is also an extremely concise package mood-wise. Maybe that’s the point – to just feel it and not overthink. Stream the entire album below to feel for yourself, and check out all the week’s in-stocks for more sounds!  -MLE

Blanck Mass – World Eater LP
Listen: Full album
“As humans, we are aware of our inner beast and should therefore be able to control it. We understand our hard-wired primal urges and why they exist in an evolutional sense. We understand the relationship between mind and body. Highly evolved and intelligent, we should be able to recognize these genetic hangovers and control them as a means to act positively and move forward as a compassionate species. Unfortunately, this is not the case. Recent global events have proven this. The human race is consuming itself.

World Eater, the new album by Benjamin John Power’s Blanck Mass project, is a reaction to this. There is an underlying violence and anger throughout the record, even though some of these tracks are the closest Power has ever come to writing, in his words, ‘actual love songs.'” -Sacred Bones

Wax eater – new releases, reissues & restocks…

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This Just In: The Mysterious Production Of Eggs

Andrew Bird’s The Mysterious Production Of Eggs is finally available on vinyl again since it’s initial release in 2005! Eggs was his third proper full-length and second release on Ani Difranco’s Righteous Babe label. Bird’s unique approach to pop/rock, incorporating violin and “professional” whistling with varied accompanying instrumentation and incredible wordplay make for an album of unlikely earworms, despite none of the compositions being conventionally “catchy.” The phrase “challenging pop” definitely applies here, and throughout Bird’s subsequent career. Take a listen to a track below and definitely scope out this week’s broad in-stock list for more great listening, challenging and otherwise! -MLE

Andrew Bird – And The Mysterious Production Of Eggs LP
Listen: “Fake Palindromes”
“Andrew Bird is a previously unimaginable combination of songwriter, violinist, guitarist, vocalist and professional whistler. His unfailingly unique and striking music has been dumbfounding us for years. Bird’s first studio album in nearly two years, The Mysterious Production of Eggs, is his second on Righteous Babe Records. The album follows Weather Systems, his critically-acclaimed mini-LP, released in spring 2003.

The recording sessions for Mysterious Production saw Bird scrap the album three times and travel between studios in Chicago, Los Angeles and his own home studio on a farm in Northern Illinois. The album took final shape with the production help of David Boucher, whose credits include Paul Westerberg, Lisa Loeb, and Randy Newman. Bird plays most of the instruments on Mysterious Production, and is joined by a handful of special guests complimenting his already lush sonic palette. The results are magnificent, a powerhouse of a record dealing with nothing less than the mysteries of childhood, creativity and modern science – epic in scope and minute in detail.” -Righteous Babe

The mysterious production of wax – new releases, reissues & restocks…

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