Jim O'Rourke/Eureka (Drag City))
Chicago wunderkind has examined everything from surreal soundscapes to
Derek Bailey/John Fahey-influenced guitar excursions to minimalist techno
to concrete. Here he's made a bonafide pop record, covering Ivor Cutler and
Burt Bacharach and the results are lovely.
Linda Perhacs/Parallelograms (The Wild Places)
Lovely and long overdue reissue of the elusive folkie legend's 1970 record.
Drifting voices amidst lovely Drake-ish guitar and even bits of electronics.
Various/RRR 500 (RRR)
What else can be said? 250 locked grooves on each side of this amazing 12".
Prick Decay, Thurston Moore, all the usual suspects add their 2 cents, or
two seconds. Kenny G has already aired an entire side.
Family Fodder/Savoire Faire (Dark Beloved Cloud)
FF were a big indie influence on the folks who paid attention (Stereolab,
Mark Robinson, etc.) and this wonderful overview gives a great look back at
this Anglo-French art popsters catalog. Singer Dominique was the last-ever
guest at the old FMU house at 580 Springdale.
Fever/Too Bad But True (DHR)
One of the best ever Digital Hardcore releases, a strange, surreal hip-hop
record (one of the duo looks like Kim Fowley, at least in the back cover
shot!). And quite slow and deep compared to the usual 2000 BPM stuff the
label usually does.
Soundtrack/Carnival of Souls (Birdman)
Utterly scary Gene Moore score to the low-budget 1960's flick documenting
the fictional tale of a woman who survives a car wreck and slowly slips
into an imaginary world, while working as a church organist. The dark,
dramatic organ and soundbites from the film make this soundtrack an amazing
Various/0161 Skam (Skam)
Great overview of one of the most innovative electronic labels going.
Abstract, warped, and highly static tracks from Jega, the Fall, V/VM, and
more. Luckily some of these artists have found some US licensing.
Brast Burn/Debon (Paradigm)
UK's Paradigm label seems to be specializing in reissues of records that
pretty much nobody by Nurse With Wound paid attention to. This is a killer
psychedelic record from Japan that, like Magical Power Mako, has borrowed
heavily on prime-era German Krautrock.
Screws/The Screws (In the Red)
Yet another rip-roaring post-Gories outfit from Mick Collins, whose John
Lee Hooker-meets-Crime take on scuzz-crash-and-burn guitar is yet another
reason to not pull out the noose everytime Sugar Ray comes on TV.
Steve Earle and Del McCoury Band/The Mountain (E-Squared)
Two of country music's best contemporaries join together for an amazing
session that will transport you to the Smokeys. The slobber still remains
on the carpet at 580 Springdale from McCoury's visit back at the old radio
Crust Brothers/Marquee Mark (Telemomo)
Impromptu, sloppy-n-fun recording of Silkworm live at the Crocodile Cafe in
Seattle ripping through Dylan, Byrds and more with Stephen Malkmus of
Godspeed You Black Emperor/Slow Riot for New Zero Kanada (Kranky)
2nd Kranky release from this huge Montreal ensemble which plays rushing,
cinematic, spacious rock music. Cellos, surging guitars, quite beautiful.
Dion McGregor/Dreams Again (Tzadik)
1960's recording of a raving madman talking in his sleep. As recorded by
his roommate, whom, amazingly enough, stayed around for a while.
Betty Davis/Betty Davis (UFO Music)
Miles' wife even outdid her hubby's "On the Corner" circa 1971 with an even
nastier, rawer funk groove. An amazing record, and she looks incredible too!
Great mid-20th century sounds of the Greek underworld.
Great collection of 1970s African funk, hot on the heels of FMU hit records
from the Daktaris and the Ethiopiques series.
Abstract electronic strangeness from the bedroom of Darryl Fitton. Right up
the alley of Autechre and Aphex fans.
Men's Recovery Project/Grappling with the Homonids (Vermiform)
Mutant, inexplicable hardcore from California where everyone seems to have
to bathe in something the Residents were in.
Doug Gillard/Malamute Jute EP (Cushion)
One of the Ohio so-called "lo-fi" scenes most hidden treasures (and he
really doesn't record lo-fi. Veteran of Cobra Verde, Gem, and one of the 80
incarnations of Guided By Voices, Gillard's sweet-sounding pure pop comes
off not too coy ane nodding more than once to "Kronikles"-era Kinks.