Copy
May 7, 2015

in this week's update

FEATURED NEW RELEASES

Actress (DJ-Kicks)
Jacco Gardner
Death and Vanilla
James Pants
Mikal Cronin
Glenn Phillips
Holger Czukay
Gruppo di Improvvisazione Nuova Consonanza
Tapes
Michael Vincent Waller
Moral
Palma Violets
 

AVAILABLE ON VINYL

Eduardo Mateo & Jorge Trasante
 

BACK IN STOCK

William Basinski (Cascade)
D'Angelo (Voodoo on 2LP)
 

PRE-ORDER

Mac DeMarco (Pre-Order)
 

announcements

LIMITED RECORD STORE DAY 2015 RELEASES

While at the shop we sold out of most of the exclusive RSD 2015 releases by Record Store Day's end, we do still have a select handful of RSD titles available, which we've posted here on our mail order site. Please note: quantities are extremely limited!

 


EAST INDIA YOUTH TICKET GIVEAWAY

TUESDAY, MAY 12

Rough Trade: 64 N. 9th St. Williamsburg, BKLN  

Next Tuesday, May 12, William Doyle brings the grandiose electro-pop sounds of his East India Youth guise to the stage at Rough Trade NYC, in support of his new full-length, Culture of Volume, out now on XL Recordings. Other Music is giving away a pair of tickets, and you can enter for your chance to win by emailing giveaway@othermusic.com!
Please note: this show was originally scheduled for May 13 at Bowery Ballroom but has since been moved to a day earlier, May 12 at Rough Trade.


BROOKLYN FLEA RECORD FAIR

SATURDAY, MAY 16

East River State Park: 90 Kent Ave. Williamsburg, BLKN
Facebook Event Invite 

Save the date! On Saturday, May 16, the spring edition of the Brooklyn Flea Record Fair returns to Williamsburg's East River State Park, with 50-plus vendors made up of independent labels, record stores (including Other Music), and used record dealers setting up next to Smorgasburg. Like last year, Red Bull Music Academy has put together a great DJ line-up, with Eamon Harkin (Mister Saturday Night), Jack Tatum (Wild Nothing), Justin Miller (Have a Killer Time), Jefre Cantu-Ledesma (Mexican Summer), and Matt Werth (RVNG Intl.) spinning the soundtrack for your crate digging. You can check out a full list of vendors here, and we'll see you on Saturday, May 16!!

this week's update

ACTRESS
DJ-Kicks
(!K7)

DJ-Kicks, the legendary series of house and techno mix albums, has established a rather efficient philosophy for the format. At all times highlighting the DJ as a gatekeeper of good taste, it also predominantly emphasizes impeccable mixing skills, defining the very foundations on which these types of albums have been built. Breaking open these traditions, DJ-Kicks invited British producer Darren Cunningham, a/k/a Actress, for its 49th installment. Cunningham has made a steady reputation by testing the boundaries of dance music towards oftentimes uncompromising, cryptic conceptual statements. His contribution, rather than showcasing immaculate mixing skills, de-emphasizes beat matching, often intentionally interrupting the flow of his mix by colliding one track into another. The result is dynamic, exciting, and resolutely unconventional.

While the mix album traditionally builds momentum through long, atmospheric passages and the meticulous timing of climactic narrative, Actress' feels oddly atemporal, more like an elegiacally built structure which houses a mystic yet highly invigorating selection process. In a recent interview, Cunningham elaborates on his unconventional mixing method, stating that he often bases his "tracklisting purely on how well the track titles work together in a poetic sense," thinking about how specific names of artists, pieces, and labels resonate on a personal level. This approach yields eccentric yet thrilling outcomes, combining classic Chicago and Detroit house and techno with more experimental cuts by the likes of Shit and Shine, Autechre, and Mark Fell. Cleverly reimagining what a good mix album should do, Cunningham sidesteps the genre's often-awkward suspension between having to be both a dance and a listening album. Disregarding such futile considerations, Actress gloriously pays homage to dance music's energetic and quick programming origins. [NVT] (Song Preview Here)

$15.99 CD
$28.99 LP+CD+12" Print

JACCO GARDNER
Hypnophobia
(Polyvinyl/Excelsior)

Young Dutch multi-instrumentalist Jacco Gardner returns with another album of sun-dappled psych-pop nuggets, his first for Polyvinyl. Gardner's sound is meticulously retro, a jangly, baroque pop confection that is both lush and streamlined, and while he expands the influence here slightly beyond the Left Banke's sparkling productions, incorporating a touch of Stereolab or Broadcast's gauzy sheen (tipped by the cover art, from 'Lab/'Cast collaborator Julian House), it's an incremental creep. The record is loaded with lovely vintage vibes, all awash in harpsichord and Hammond, and while it's definitely nothing new, for fans of the genre it's an enjoyable listen, and holds up to Gardner's 2013 debut. [JM] (Song Preview Here)

$14.99 CD
$18.99 LP+MP3


DEATH AND VANILLA
To Where the Wild Things Are
(Fire)

If the recent spate of Broadcast vinyl reissues has whet your musical palate for more groovy sounds, the new offering from Death and Vanilla will be right up your avenue. Straight out of Malmo, the city that gave us the Cardigans and Eggstone, this Swedish trio plays with antique instruments and is unquestionably in thrall to the psychedelic, space-age era. Upon hearing To Where the Wild Things Are, one can connect the dots from '90s/early-2000s acts like Broadcast, Stereolab, Saint Etienne, and Noonday Underground, back to their source material: the United States of America, Julie Driscoll, and Joe Meek. The distinctive cover art was designed by Julian House and it's a mystery why this album isn't on his Ghost Box imprint, as the air of displaced nostalgia throughout the disc shares a lot in common with that label's aesthetic. Marleen Nilsson's deadpan vocals come off like Sarah Cracknell on codeine, though to be honest, they're not quite dynamic enough to hold one's interest throughout the entire record. The treasures, however, lie in the trippy instrumental codas in songs like "Follow the Light" and "Necessary Distinctions," and the two vox-less cuts, "The Hidden Reverse" and "Something Unknown You Need to Know." Death and Vanilla aren't going to trouble the singles charts but they excel at establishing an overall mood. [KV] (Song Preview Here)

$14.99 CD
$27.99 LP

JAMES PANTS
Savage
(Stones Throw)

Underrated yet always on point, this international man of mystery checks in from his new home in Cologne with a great new album for Stones Throw, his first in four years. Though he's not a rapper and he doesn't make rap music, to me James Pants is hip-hop's version of Ariel Pink. Pants, however, is funkier -- less a bedroom producer and more a one-man psych-soul-boogie band. He's that guy you see digging in unmarked boxes tucked away in record stores; yeah, he's into some obscure, weird stuff and the music he makes perfectly reflects, pays homage to, and keeps the outsider soul genre alive. Much like Pink, Pants combines live instruments, vintage gear, and drum machines with a few samples and his own unique vocal stylings, all with an air of what's old is new again. If you took Martin Denny, Joe Meek, and Bruce Haack, and mashed their music with Devo and Alan Vega, you would get a sense of what's going on here.

On Savage, Pants ventures a bit more into '60s pop exotica than usual, fusing those sounds and melodies with his already established brand of his '80s sub-sub genre "fresh beat." He has always done a great job at sequencing his albums; songs move from instrumental to vocal -- some more abstract, some more pop -- and he touches on a lot of things, but consistently with an original sound and style. My only complaint here would be that Savage is too short, as most tracks clock in around the one- or two-minute mark. That said, one of the longest, "Artificial Lover," is also one of the best and it's totally classic James Pants, with school-rhyme xylophone, walking synth bass, searing synthesizers, nice keyboard sample stabs, and a dual vocal between a deep-voiced Pants and a synthetic female. It's slinky and sleazy in a red light district karaoke bar kind of way. He has a great sense of humor that never gets in the way of listenable and honestly intriguing music -- and that's where he differs from Ariel Pink. For fans of Toro Y Moi, Blood Orange, etc., if you don't know the name James Pants, you really should. He's weirder than those guys, but just as good. [DG] (Song Preview Here)

$16.99 LP


MIKAL CRONIN
MCIII
(Merge)

Almost exactly two years after his beautiful Merge debut, MCII, Mikal Cronin returns with a grander, bolder follow-up. The California singer-songwriter welcomes you with open arms into his world of lush orchestras and pop hooks that often reach Shins-ian grandeur. While you can still detect some of his garage-rock roots, instruments like French horn, trumpet, saxophone, and even the tzouras (a traditional Greek instrument) are incorporated alongside his soaring Les Paul solos, with Cronin's yearning melodies at times conjuring the same sense of nostalgia as Beirut -- only MCIII plays like a summer road trip across America as opposed to an afternoon stroll through a village in Eastern Europe. Distinctly divided into two halves, the five tracks that make up the A-side are the poppier excursions, filled with big hooks and big production. Then, turn the record over and tearjerker "Alone" (which starts off as a slow baroque ballad and unfurls into a thrilling climax of Neutral Milk Hotel proportion) begins a six-part coming-of-age story that's far more gritty and personal. That said, each half has its full-on jam sessions (side one's "Say," side two's "Gold") as well as its more somber tracks (one's "I've Been Loved" and two's "Different"), and it all marks significant growth for Cronin on his enjoyable third LP. [MM] (Song Preview Here)

$12.99 CD ON SALE
$19.99 LP+MP3

GLENN PHILLIPS
Lost at Sea
(Feeding Tube)

Glenn Phillips' Lost at Sea is one of those rare LPs that will please Zappa fanatics, prog heads and skronk aficionados in equal measure. A near-perfect collection of homemade instrumental jams recorded in 1975 by the former Hampton Grease Band guitarist, the tunes here show off Phillips' formidable six-string chops without ever taking things too far into the wank zone. But there's just the right amount of wank. Take "Dogs," one of Lost at Sea's most dazzling tracks. It starts off with some beautifully pastoral playing, a bed of gently acoustic guitar, violin and keyboards setting the scene. Yet before you know it, Phillips has launched into a wild solo that sounds like Nels Cline or John McLaughlin at their most ecstatic, zipping up and down the fretboard with abandon, before abruptly shifting back to the mellow coda. Amazing. For this 40th Anniversary Deluxe Edition, Feeding Tube Records has added an entire bonus LP to Lost at Sea, made up of contemporaneous Phillips recordings. In other words, a good thing just got better. [TW]

$34.99 2LP


HOLGER CZUKAY
On the Way to the Peak of Normal
(Gronland)


Following last year's LP-only reissue of Holger Czukay's 1981 ambient yacht rock curiosum On the Way to the Peak of Normal, Grönland now releases this delicious Kraut treat on CD as well. The album presents Czukay's third solo statement after he wrote music history with his comrades of CAN, perfecting his innovative sampling-method and mode of laid-back jamming with a really outstanding collection of environmental late night grooves. A former pupil of the grand German spiritual composer Karlheinz Stockhausen, the mustachioed mastermind's fluid bass movements were a quintessential element of CAN's machine-like collective vision. And, with the great human metronome Jaki Liebezeit providing exquisite drum motifs on some of the tracks, this record hints at a potential direction CAN might have taken had they not dissolved at the end of the 1970s.

On the Way to the Peak of Normal blends world music with vocal samples, and a truly astounding improvisational flow. The title track, with its curving bass, peculiar synth strokes, drunken horn sections, strange vocals, and exotic sounding cut 'n' paste techniques, immediately brings to mind the hypnotic grooves of the former band's pristine sonic patchworks. The Conny Plank-produced "Witches' Multiplication Table" continues this immaculate flow, whereas "Ode to Perfume" and "Fragrance" present yet another ensemble of organic sounding cuts. Characterized by twangy guitars, weird melodic lines, and a mind-boggling mix of musical innovation and more clean-cut Steely Dan-like excursions, this is by all means succulently "off" material. The record simply has to be heard to be believed, as Czukay is pushing his habitual musical lingo towards synaesthetic terrain here, opening up the olfactory dimensions of sonic production. A true delight! [NVT] (Song Preview Here)

$16.99 CD
$25.99 LP

GRUPPO DI IMPROVVISAZIONE NUOVA CONSONANZA
Gli Occhi Freddi Della Paura OST
(Dagored)

The soundtrack to this 1971 film (The Cold Eyes of Fear) is not mere background music. The music and the way it's arranged -- harsh, ephemeral -- would be difficult to integrate and not have the sound dominate the motion, in this case, of a slasher/suspense flick. The only film score Morricone ever recorded with his Gruppo di Improvvisazione Nuova Consonanza, the whole sound is like trying to wear something down by throwing metal shards at it: It's got chaotic movement, yet is not chaos itself. Morricone, on trumpet, leads a flawed call and response (with himself) that's as if he's trying to communicate through a brick wall; there's a jazz rhythm section that goes from scattered to driving; a prepared piano echoes, tingly, next to the jarring vibrations of an out-of-tune violin. It's brilliant, but dead -- blank stares of the underworld, rattlesnake rhythms and a lion's yawn. By the end, you're positively eroded, abraded into accepting an entirely new set of tonal values as 'normal'. [RE]

$25.99 LP


TAPES
Datura Mystic
(Honest Jon's)

Honest Jon's brings us Jackson "Tapes" Bailey's new collaborative release with Calvin Cameron's Rastafari percussion collective, Wareika Hill Sounds. On "Datura Mystic," Tapes' lo-fi and psychedelic-ish electronics are countered by the lyrical and chant-like melodic phrases of Diggory Kenrick's flute playing, which offers a mystical interaction of sorts to this percussion-driven excursion. The flipside, however, is an interesting contrast: a tribal drum track is heavily coated by delay effects processing that flutters throughout its four-minute length, conjuring something that's nothing less than haunting. To put it simply, this two-song EP carries some serious weight. Listeners who are familiar with the catalogues of Honest Jon's, Basic Channel, and Jahtari will probably have copped this 12" already -- if not, what are you waiting for? [HW]

$13.99 12"

MICHAEL VINCENT WALLER
The South Shore
(XI)

Released on Phill Niblock's long-standing Experimental Intermedia imprint, a quality house for all things avant-garde and experimental, neoclassical composer Michael Vincent Waller's debut, The South Shore, arrives as a bold surprise. The record does not consist of the label's signature exploration of new ideas and technologies, but instead delivers thoughtfully composed, short chamber works that feel decisively out of sync with current developments in contemporary music. A graduate of New York University and one-time pupil of La Monte Young, Waller eschews the joyful experimentation of yesteryear, as well as today's atonal preoccupations, and comes up with a unique, courageous proposition of postminimal music freed from the exacting techniques and methodologies of the avant-garde.

According to the liner notes, which are penned by the authoritative "Blue" Gene Tyranny, Waller's music suggests a "welcome and rare alternative to the tempo and noise of modern life." In fact, it wholeheartedly succeeds in offering its complete opposite: stillness, a sense of all-encompassing quietude and immobility. An antidote to today's hyper-connected, fluid world, the record, quite surprisingly, articulates immediacy. This confident approach is richly illustrated across the double-disc's 21 miniature compositions, which explore a unique territory in between romantic reverie, folk miniatures, and repeating (but not repetitive) patterns. Its only flaw being the daunting abundance of material (the album could perhaps have benefitted from a concise editing down), The South Shore is the convincing debut of a promising composer. [NVT] (Song Preview Here)

$15.99 2CD


MORAL
And Life Is
(Dark Entries)

Here's a totally obscure synth-wave record from Denmark, circa 1984. Moral was a short-lived trio of Marco Andreis (guitars, bass), Hanne Winterberg (vocals) and Ingolf Brown (synthesizers, rhythm box, sequencer) who very seldom performed live but still landed opening slots for both Nico and the Monochrome Set. Their sound, while retaining some of the energy of the punk era, was fairly melancholic and mostly driven by Winterberg's achingly nostalgic singing. Like a sped-up Young Marble Giants, Moral's tunes are short and sweet and full of deceptively simple hooks. "Still Remaining" is a futuristic spacy synth anthem with tick-tocking mechanized rhythms while "On Serial Rendau" hints at the kind of emotionally charged, deconstructed vignettes that Broadcast perfected much later. Elsewhere, tracks like "The Average Life" and "Trees in November" are more guitar-driven, with a post-punk womp and shimmering strums reminiscent of Ben Watt or the Wake. Many would agree that this is one of the best "minimal synth" records out there, and those who haven't heard And Life Is until now will consider this a very cool discovery. Dark Entries' excellent re-press will definitely appeal to fans of the above-mentioned as well as Siouxsie and the Banshees, Crash Course in Science, Pink Industry, early 4AD releases and Chairs Missing-era Wire. [RN] (Song Preview Here)

$21.99 LP

PALMA VIOLETS
Danger in the Club
(Rough Trade)

This snotty London quartet made a name for themselves with a barely contained live show and a set of drunken music hall sing-alongs that added little to the cannon of UK punk, but nonetheless lived up to the spirit of many of the band's influences. Not much has changed on their sophomore LP -- it's a bit darker overall, and the hooks are sometimes buried deeper, but fans of this sound will find a lot to enjoy, even if the young group's growth is not amongst its charms. Youthful songwriting, stumbling, tumbling guitars, and rough-and-ready vocal harmonies make the very real impression of a bunch of lads tripping through late-night London together, arms around shoulders, on the prowl for a new adventure, or at least a strong pint. [JM]

$12.99 CD ON SALE
$18.99 LP

now on vinyl

EDUARDO MATEO & JORGE TRASANTE
Mateo y Trasante
(Lion Productions)

Now on vinyl! Here we have what is arguably Uruguayan legend Eduardo Mateo's greatest album, Mateo y Trasante, recorded in the mid-'70s with a young percussionist named Jorge Trasante. Mateo was a notoriously difficult and eccentric character, but widely believed to be the most poetic and talented singer and songwriter in '60s and '70s Uruguay. The production of his first solo LP was fraught with delays owing to Mateo's unreliability and probable mental illness, and several years would pass until he was able to make it into the studio again. But my god, the ideas that must have been germinating in the man's mind, as the results are nothing less than totally sublime. About a year before going into the studio he'd begun rehearsing and constantly hanging out with Trasante, a young veteran of several Uruguayan bands. The liner notes include a lengthy and moving remembrance from Trasante about the difficulties of meeting up with Mateo during the height of Uruguay's military dictatorship, and about how they'd face off and play music all day long, and then spend the evenings listening to ethnic records from all over the world. By the time it came to record the two were in perfect harmony, with Mateo's songs and delivery evincing an even greater depth and maturity than before, as he was abetted by the sonorous rhythms Trasante could conjure on his drums. Apart from one tune fleshed out with a small ensemble, what you hear is simply the gorgeous meeting of voice, acoustic guitar, and percussion, and it is the sound of perfection. [MK]

$24.99 LP

back in stock

WILLIAM BASINSKI
Cascade
(2062)

How does one follow the production of an era-defining musical statement -- one that came about almost by accident? Such is the task resting on the shoulders of the master-composer of sonic disintegration, William Basinski. After recording his illustrious The Disintegration Loops, a gesture meant to anxiously preserve music from his archive as it literally started decaying on the magnetic tapes on which it was stored, the piece came to represent the deep sense of loss and trauma New York City experienced post-9/11. Not so much a gesture of saving that which is lost as one of channeling the most harsh of transformations (or, as the old avant-garde statement expresses, "destroying something in order to make something new"), The Disintegration Loops, quite miraculously, became an agent of change. But, it has also become the template of a hyper individual aesthetic preoccupation, characterized by Basinski's distinguishing hypnagogic, repetitive drowsiness, something the composer would further build upon with each consecutive release.

Upon first listen, Cascade, a luscious 40 minute-long composition, further elaborates on this by now well-established process. The main loop is one of a piano, an ingenuous repetition of two-note phrases, which is elaborately modified by Basinski's use of an echo unit and other mystical crumbling techniques. Followed by an abrupt drop in volume, we are then left with a tarnished, almost choral synth arrangement in the concluding last minutes of the piece. The effect is one of looming claustrophobia turned relief, making Cascade one of Basinski's simultaneously most grave and anticipative sounding works. The piece signifies somewhat of a shift for the master, who, according to some, is often just effortlessly and endlessly replicating previous repetitions. Such a view simply disregards the particulars of the singular sonic world Basinski continues to craft, interminably transforming harmonic developments and deterioration as slowly moving yet life affirming listening experiences. The central shift is to be found in a move towards performance as a compositional device, the deliberate injection of a sense of rebirth within the music, which affects the responses to his most famous, process-based work as a consequence. [NVT] (Song Preview Here)

$13.99 CD


D'ANGELO
Voodoo
(Modern Classics)

Following D'Angelo's long-long-awaited third full-length, Black Messiah, comes this double-LP pressing of Voodoo, the first time his groundbreaking album has been available on vinyl since its original release 14 years ago. One of the most defining records of the early 2000s and as influential now as it ever was, you need this. Enough said. (Song Preview Here)

$34.99 2LP

pre-order

MAC DEMARCO
Another One EP
(Captured Tracks)

Pre-order Mac DeMarco's forthcoming Another One EP, out August 7th. Home-recorded entirely by Mac, by himself in his Far Rockaway, Queens apartment, Another One features eight new songs, many sure to be staples during his summer tour which will include festival appearances at Shaky Knees, Austin Psych Fest, Pitchfork, Outside Lands, Bonnaroo, and Solid Sound, as well as a four-night run in NYC, playing at the Bowery Ballroom, Webster Hall, Music Hall of Williamsburg, and Warsaw. (Your pre-order will be shipped to arrive at your door on or near its August 7th release date.)

$12.99 CD PRE-ORDER
$19.99 LP PRE-ORDER

also available

51717/SILENT SERVANT
Jealous God 06
(Jealous God)

$21.99 LP

ILYAS AHMED
I Am All Your Own
(Immune)

$21.99 LP

ARIEL PINK'S HAUNTED GRAFFITI
Underground
(Vinyl International)

$19.99 LP

ARIEL PINK'S HAUNTED GRAFFITI
Odditties & Sodomies Vol. 1
(Vinyl International)

$19.99 LP

JAC BERROCAL/DAVID FENECH/VINCENT EPPLAY
Antigravity (Blackest Ever Black)

$17.99 CD

 

BEST COAST
California Nights
(Harvest)

$10.99 CD ON SALE
$21.99 LP

 

DJANGO DJANGO
Born Under Saturn
(Ribbon Music)

$15.99 CD
$29.99 LP

BILL FAY
Who Is the Sender?
(Dead Oceans)

$11.99 CD ON SALE
$18.99 LP

HOP ALONG
Painted Shut
(Saddle Creek)

$14.99 CD
$21.99 LP+MP3

HOWLING
Sacred Ground
(Monkeytown)

$15.99 CD
 

PERRY LEOPOLD
Christian Lucifer
(PSI)

$24.99 LP

 

METZ
II
(Sub Pop)

$12.99 CD ON SALE
$19.99 LP

 

MUMFORD & SONS
Wilder Mind
(Island)

$14.99 CD ON SALE
$19.99 DELUXE CD
$27.99 LP+MP3

MY MORNING JACKET
The Waterfall
(ATO)

$12.99 CD ON SALE
$15.99 DELUXE CD ON SALE
$26.99 LP

NOCHEXXX
Plot Defender
(Type)

$26.99 2LP

THE ORANGE PEELS
Begin the Begone
(Minty Fresh/Mystery Lawn)

$13.99 CD

OTHER LIVES
Rituals
(tbd)

$11.99 CD
$19.99 2LP

PALMEIRA
Palmeira
(Pharaway Sounds)

$17.99 CD
$27.99 LP

ROSE WINDOWS
Rose Windows
(Sub Pop)

$13.99 CD
$19.99 LP+MP3

RROSE PLAYS JAMES TENNEY
Having Never Written a Note for Percussion (Further)

$24.99 LP
 

ANGELO NOCE SANTORO
For You
(Pharaway Sounds)

$17.99 CD
$27.99 LP

SUMY
Tryin' to Survive
(Rush Hour)

$17.99 LP
 

TRS-80/DAFT PUNK/ARIEL PINK
Sky Sailor EP (Vinyl International)

$24.99 10" EP (BLUE VINYL)

VARIOUS ARTISTS
Don't Think I've Forgotten: Cambodia's Lost Rock and Roll (Dust-to-Digital)

$13.99 CD

the big picture

UPDATE ARCHIVES
VISIT OUR WEBSITE