Other Music New Release Update
July 25, 2001

In This Week's Update:

Ellen Allien mix
Steve Reid
KMD reissue
"Downtown 81" soundtrack
"Asian Takeaways" comp.
Nagisa Ni Te
Marine Girls reissue
Echo & the Bunnymen box set
Gene Clark reissue
Dillard and Clark reissue
High Rise
Edith Frost
Greenpot Bluepot
Swan Dive
Beikoku Ongaku
Mark Grant house mix
Apples in Stereo single

Reiko Kudo
Mahar Shalal Hash Baz

Featured New Releases:

ELLEN ALLIEN "Flieg Mit Ellen Allien Mix" (Bpitch Control, Germany) CD $15.99
RealAudio: /ramgen/othermusic/allimix1.rm
RealAudio: /ramgen/othermusic/allimix2.rm
Ellen Allien's summer mix CD. Allien, who runs hard-ass
electro/dance label Bpitch Control, selects some of her recent
favorite tunes, mostly (if not all) from Germany. Great modern
new-wavish pop techno with a lot of retro sounds but no retro
imitations--I think of it as Neue NDW, to be redundant. Standouts
include the poppier numbers by Meinrad Jungblut, Paula (mixed by
NDW stalwart Andreas Dorau!), Aeric mixed by Miss Kittin & the
Hacker. This is as fun to me as I-F's "Mixed Up in the Hague" CD
was last year around this time (especially since "Mixed Up in the
Hague 2" seems to be in total limbo). Allien is better than Chicks
on Speed all by her lonesome, and pulls off what I think the
Ersatz Audio label _want_ to be doing. Excellent. [RE]

STEVE REID "Nova" (Universal Sound, UK) CD/LP $18.99/$18.99
RealAudio: /ramgen/othermusic/SixthHou.rm
RealAudio: /ramgen/othermusic/LongTime.rm
Featuring: The Legendary Master Brotherhood. And, boy, do they
ever live up to that name! Art Ensemble-style tribal out damage
led by under-recorded drummer extraordinaire Reid, who made his
reputation as a sideman for the legendary Charles Tyler, played in
Sun Ra's Arkestra and recorded only one other session (the
killer "Rhythmatism") as a leader. A conscientious objector, Reid
spent two years in prison toward the end of the '60s. He emerged
determined to teach and ultimately received grants from the
National Endowment for the Arts. So he formed his own label,
Mustevic Sound, a radical venture along the lines of the AACM,
Black Artist Group, Strata-East, or Tribe. "Nova" was recorded in
1976. There's a sophisticated elegance, yet gritty immediacy to
these proceedings; imagine "Bitches Brew"-era Miles really tossing
it all in, joining Sun Ra and going entirely DIY; no entourage, no
fly threads, no Betty Davis or even Cicely Tyson -- all spiritual
quest and uncanny instinct. An ideal balance of fire music,
compositional innovation, and Reid's ability to anchor them both
in tasty harmony. Highest recommendation. [JG]
CD  //perl-bin/OM/CD_Add_To_Cart.cgi?sku=502632820152&refer_url=email
LP  //perl-bin/OM/CD_Add_To_Cart.cgi?sku=09999160671&refer_url=email

KMD "Mr. Hood" (Metal Face) CD $13.99
RealAudio: /ramgen/othermusic/NittyGri.rm
RealAudio: /ramgen/othermusic/kmd.rm
Formed in 1990, KMD's ability to marry militancy and humor was
almost unheard-of at the time. Onyx, Zev Love X (MF Doom) and the
late Subroc are wry, angry, forthright, and laugh-out-loud funny,
all at the same time. This album came out in 1991, and the label
it was on (who shall remain nameless in shame) dropped the ball,
nearly did their best to keep KMD down. With an iota more
promotion, historically, "Mr. Hood" would have stood next to "3
Ft. High and Rising", "Done in by The Forces of Nature",
and "Peoples Instinctive Travels and the Paths of Rhythm" as one
of the defining albums of early '90s hip-hop. Aesthetically it's
quite on a par already. That this album went out of print was an
injustice; that it's back is a relief and a joy. A stone cold hip-
hop classic, period. [RE/GA]

[V/A] "Downtown 81 Soundtrack" (Virgin, France) CD $11.99
RealAudio: /ramgen/othermusic/coatimun.rm
RealAudio: /ramgen/othermusic/grayD81.rm
NYC in 1981 was the locus of some major musical changes and shifts-
-with new genres rolling out seemingly monthly, they got all mixed
up with existing styles and the music of the city became something
exciting, unpredictable. It was a time when punk swiped from hip-
hop and vice versa, when new wave and disco were heard on the same
dancefloor and no one thought it odd. Latin music trickled down
from the north end of the island, ska came across not one but two
seas, and no-wave had a second birthday party. The movie "Downtown
81" follows artist Jean-Michel Basquiat around the city in a
(somewhat) invented scenario that paralleled his own life, and
into clubs where Japan's Plastics, Kid Creole, and James White
played to audiences where John Lurie and Andy Warhol lurked. The
whole reflective melange is not only captured on film but on this
soundtrack as well. If you are a no-wave aficionado you'll have a
bit of this (tracks from DNA, Tuxedomoon, Suicide, for instance)
but here you get them next to Pablo Calogero's intense Latin jazz,
Coati Mundi Hernandez' noisy hip-hop latin disco, Basquiat's own
band Gray, and lots more. [RE]

[V/A] "Asian Takeaways" (QDK, Germany) CD $14.99
RealAudio: /ramgen/othermusic/changsia.rm
RealAudio: /ramgen/othermusic/chungaea.rm
There's some obsessive collector close to QDK media with a varied
collection of '60s and '70s Asian pop music, and they've called on
him (or her) just as they did with someone else for their "Doob
Doob O Rama" collections. While bits of Japanese music of that
period have trickled over here on CD (on the "Toshiba Express"
collection, at least), this one covers Korea, Malaysia, Hong Kong,
and Singapore. Western influences are integrated similarly to the
way rock steady absorbed soul--the fundamentals of the pop and
rock are here, but given over often to Asian melodies or themes.
Nothing but fun (and mostly cheesy fun), traditional songs get
backgrounds of twanging guitars, blasting horns, or piano (Yao Su-
Yong's 'At Three Springtime' and 'Sacred Wind in Spring' in
particular) and even mambo or even rock steady rhythms. Chang
Siao Ying's Singapore swing is set into British-style Big-Beat rock
with totally fuzzed out guitars. The juxtapositions here are all --
the weirder they are, the better the song is, and they've dug up a
number of songs that span hemispheres in one broad, usually
bizarre stroke. It's a little condescending for me to say
it's 'wacky', but it _is_ wacky and that's how QDK intended this
collection, even if the artists themselves didn't. [RE]

NAGISA NI TE "Feel" (P-Vine, Japan) CD $21.99
RealAudio: /ramgen/othermusic/nagisani.rm
RealAudio: /ramgen/othermusic/nagisate.rm
The music of Nagisa Ni Te is sun-drenched, thoughtful, and
patiently executed. On "Feel", their most recent offering,
recorded in 2000 and 2001, Shinji Shibayama and his muse Masako
Takeda slow the outside world down to lead the listener into their
own world, to magical effect. The songs are extended verses and
choruses in which the two vocalists complement each other
wonderfully in a manner that is sometimes certain and focused, at
other times lazy and dreamy. Once again the CD is presented as a
miniaturized reproduction of an exquisite gatefold LP package,
complete with lyric booklet and English translation. "Feel" acts
as a metronome for a summer day, calm enough to absorb the warmth
in every moment while attempting to extend that moment into
infinity. [CK]

MARKANT "Infam" (Markant, Germany) CD $15.99
RealAudio: /ramgen/othermusic/markant1.rm
RealAudio: /ramgen/othermusic/markant2.rm
Finally! Carsten Endrass has released a full-length CD. This
painfully elusive electronic producer released no less than thirty
EPs in the past few years. Spending the last four years in a small
town in Bavaria, he's made a point of remaining completely
anonymous, insisting that he never traveled to the more
cosmopolitan centers such as Frankfurt, Cologne, or Berlin,
thereby remaining untainted by the influences he undoubtedly would
have encountered. But one would do well to take that tale with a
pinch of salt, because Endrass' music is certainly not without
influences. There are traces of early Autechre and Aphex Twin to
be found, and Markant does fashion tracks that are suffused with a
certain melancholy that runs as deep as the basslines themselves.
The latter is a feature of his music that many of his peers seem
incapable of sustaining over time. Considering that his previous
vinyl EPs were merely numbered, without track names or any
tantalizing information in the run-off grooves, this is
practically a celebrity display. [TH]

MARINE GIRLS "Lazy Ways/Beach Party" (Spin Art) CD $14.99
RealAudio: /ramgen/othermusic/marineg1.rm
RealAudio: /ramgen/othermusic/marineg2.rm
It's amazing that record(s) this fundamental have been 20 years
without a domestic release. The Marine Girls formed when
schoolchums Tracey Thorn, Gina ?, and Jane Fox formed a band
(Jane's sister Alice replaced Gina early on). It was 1980, and
their favorite band was Young Marble Giants. Somehow the Marine
Girls became the only other band to use that stark sound,
accentuated by the fact that Stuart Moxham from that group
recorded "Lazy Ways", actually their second album. Where do Marine
Girls diverge from YMG? There's but the faintest echo of the girl
group sound in their music, a shadow outline of Phil Spector in
the harmonies and arrangements, reduced to a frame around an empty
picture--like folksongs by Lesley Gore and Lulu, and also quite
unlike that, too. There's a lure to the near-monotone which the
three (they traded off on vocals) sang with, an enticing reserve
that's quite British, feminine and at a complete, relaxed peace.
Their music is the equivalent to someone talking intensely in a
low voice--so devastatingly intriguing, you _have_ to lean in
closer. Thorn's solo album followed this in a quite similar style,
and you can still hear the residue of this charismatic stateliness
in her more recent work with Everything But The Girl and Massive
Attack. These albums have been in print in the UK for years, but
if you don't have this yet, the domestic issue is a wonderful
excuse to finally get it. [RE]

ECHO & THE BUNNYMEN "Crystal Days 1979-1999" (Rhino) 4xCD Box Set $54.99
RealAudio: /ramgen/othermusic/bunymen1.rm
RealAudio: /ramgen/othermusic/bunymen2.rm
When I was in high school, my three favorite bands in the world
were New Order, the Smiths, and Echo and the Bunnymen. I used to
snicker derisively at teachers and anyone older who romanticized
the music of their youth--like say, the Stones or the Beatles. I
wondered why they didn't listen to anything contemporary.  It was
after all 1986. In the last gasp of my 20s, with 30 right around
the corner, I realize that my three favorite bands in the world
are still... New Order, the Smiths, and Echo and the Bunnymen.
Never having seized the world with an iconic figure like Morrissey
or achieved massive dancefloor success with a 'Blue Monday'-type
smash, Echo and the Bunnymen were nonetheless as crucial as your
first kiss. At their best, they were simply brilliant; capable of
evoking the stir of a heart with the string swell of 'Ocean Rain'
or the duel euphoria and sadness of 'Bring on the Dancing
Horses'. "Crystal Days 1979-1999" neatly surmises Echo's history
into pictures, commentary, and four discs that span all their
studio albums (minus the Ian McCullough-less "Reverberation")
along with B-sides, alternate takes, and live tracks. Even later
period material, like 1999's overlooked 'What Are You Going to
Do With Your Life?', still resonates with the sensation of youth
fading and the resolve against growing old. Truly, "...fate, up
against your will." Echo and the Bunnymen were contributors to the
adolescent experience, like old pictures, ticket stubs and the
occasional black concert t-shirt. And in the best way, that is
what nostalgia is all about. [KC]

GENE CLARK "Roadmaster" (Edsel, UK) CD $15.99
RealAudio: /ramgen/othermusic/genclar1.rm
RealAudio: /ramgen/othermusic/genclar2.rm
Gene Clark was the original songwriter/singer for the Byrds. Due
to a fear of flying, he was forced to quit the band (being unable
to tour). However, he continued to record, both solo and with the
Flying Burrito Bros., Dillard and Clark and the Godsin Bros.
("Roadmaster" was recorded between 1970-1972 with the Flying
Burrito Bros. and the Byrds as the backup musicians!) It mystifies
me that Clark has never received nearly the amount of acclaim that
Gram Parsons has -- even as they both explored a very similar
terrain in their music. If you set them side by side, I truly
think Clark comes out on top: not only in terms of songwriting
skill, but also his voice, which is much more soulful than
Parsons'. So please help Clark reap the posthumous acclaim he so
rightfully deserves! For all fans of  'Cosmic American Music'. [MK]

DILLARD & CLARK "Fantastic Expedition of" (Edsel, UK) CD $18.99
RealAudio: /ramgen/othermusic/dilclar1.rm
RealAudio: /ramgen/othermusic/dilclar2.rm
The amazing bluegrass group the Dillards opened for the Byrds on
tours throughout 1965 and 1966--during which time Doug Dillard
made the acquaintance of Gene Clark, who was still in the Byrds at
that point. Clark became fired up at the idea of forming a modern
bluegrass band--sort of the bluegrass equivalent to what the
Flying Burrito Brothers were to country music--and this was their
first album of that collaboration. And that's what this sounds
like--Dillard's wicked banjo playing a lacework around Clark's
heartfelt vocals, that wide-open Californian pop production sound
meshed with the tight speed of bluegrass. I can't think of another
record that sounds quite like this one, of solid bluegrass and a
vague dreamy swirl of R&B heartache, well-chosen covers and
masterful musicianship. [RE]

HIGH RISE "Psychbomb" (PSF, Japan) CD $20.99
RealAudio: /ramgen/othermusic/Mira.rm
RealAudio: /ramgen/othermusic/Psychede.rm
I've been nursing a serious Hawkwind fetish of late. You know, the
kind where a band can do absolutely no wrong; even the stuff
others might consider dreck sounds so insanely right at any given
moment. High Rise took their name from a Hawkwind track. They're
from Japan and they play heavy and very fast. This was recorded
live on their Year 2000 tour of the United States. I had the
privilege of attending the NYC show that comprises more than half
of this set. This is by no means the best High Rise album, but
nothing in the world sounds better to me at this very moment. Not
even Hawkwind. [JG]

EDITH FROST "Wonder Wonder" (Drag City) CD $13.99
RealAudio: /ramgen/othermusic/efrost1.rm
RealAudio: /ramgen/othermusic/efrost2.rm
It is with great anticipation that one looks forward to a new
Edith Frost record. Like Barbara Manning, Frost hardly releases a
record every other month, and thus her albums have a careful,
thoughtful quality about them. When Drag City released her aching,
desolate "Telescopic", its production values attracted an entirely
new group of fans, those who were already listening to Bill
Callahan (Smog) and Cat Power. But her new record stands alone,
separating her once again from her ostensible peers (has she _any_
at this point?). "Wonder Wonder", produced by Rian Murphy, points,
quite subtly, in a country direction. But "alt-country" fans
beware; you won't find an excess of steel guitar or 'new country'
conceits here. Rather, she sounds like a contemporary Phoebe Snow,
writing songs of regret and isolation that sit well beside more
optimistic numbers.  In other words, there is more than a glimpse
of redemption here though it is always tempered by an honesty that
doesn't flinch in the face of romantic defeat. Her songs are
sometimes difficult, not always keeping time, and perhaps that is
what makes this record so compelling. You'd love to sing along or
hum one of the songs on "Wonder Wonder", but the unexpected
twists and turns prevent that. [TH]

GREENPOT BLUEPOT "Daymares and Nightdreams" (Global Buddy) LP  $11.99
The first signs of Miss Greenpot Bluepot arrived here via our
notice board. Her show announcements were meticulously hand-sewn
creations of yarn, cloth, feathers and miniature red pillows. A
week later came her LP. On first listen, five Other Music
employees and myself were fully stunned; all scrunched-up noses
and raised eyebrows, unable to speak. Because no matter how fast
you play "Daymares and Nightdreams", it sounds like it's on the
wrong speed. Miss Greenpot Bluepot and her keyboard warble in
eerie lands of their own, with castles of reverb, swampy moats of
organ. Untrained combinations of major and minor keys clash
confidently, at times cacophonous. Her work is most like that of
Annette Peacock, Ann Magnuson, Marianne Nowottny, Ed Askew,
Jandek, even Peter Grudzien. I've added Miss Greenpot Bluepot to
my list of favorite nutballs. [GF]

REPLIKAS "Koledoyuran" (Ada Musik, Turkey) CD $13.99
RealAudio: /ramgen/othermusic/replika1.rm
RealAudio: /ramgen/othermusic/replikas.rm
What does Turkish post/Kraut/space rock sound like? Formed in the
early '90s, the group Replikas have Can's urgency and drive, a
strange sense of the song construct (a la many post-rockers),
played with the instruments and wavery melodic lines of Turkish
music. Arching guitars and hollowskin drums stab forward, and
trailing behind are trembling electronics, radio short-outs and
faulty wiring, whispers and weird breathing, strings bending and
falling. As teenagers, Replikas were all into heavy metal, and you
can hear the echoes of that kind of grandeur and melodrama in
their music today (like the super gruff chanting on one of the
trax), mixed with arcane Islamic ritual 'zikir' frenzifying. To
use the band's own words (not to describe them, but it fits here),
there's something 'crude and passionate' (and marvelous) here. [RE]

SWAN DIVE "Words You Whisper" (Siesta, Spain) CD $10.99
RealAudio: /ramgen/othermusic/swandiv1.rm
RealAudio: /ramgen/othermusic/swandiv2.rm
Swan Dive, the Nashville-based duo of (girlfriend and boyfriend?)
Molly Felder and Bill DeMain have as their main fan base the
country of Japan, where they've hit the top 10 and have written
songs for Chocolat, among others. On the other hand, they're
Nashville music scene stalwarts; closer to home, DeMain's songs
have appeared on albums by Jill Sobule and Marshall
Crenshaw. "Words You Whisper" is Swan Dive's stab at smooth,
electronic ez-listening pop, the kind that you imagine populating
the set of Casino Royale or the JFK TWA terminal, even if piped in
internally, via sets of jelly-plastic headphones on the heads of
the stylish. Felder's voice is innocuous and pretty, set into
sparkling settings. Like a low-energy Pizzicato 5: fans of April
March, Sergio Mendes, even Stereolab will find something here to
like. Nine high-gloss songs, 28 minutes. [RE]

HELENA "Azul" (Tricatel, France) CD $21.99
RealAudio: /ramgen/othermusic/VidaNunc.rm
RealAudio: /ramgen/othermusic/BabyButt.rm
Helena is Helena Noguerra, a multi-talented Belgian model/
actress/musician born to Portuguese parents. On "Azul", her
first album for Bertrand Burgalat's Tricatel label, she enlists
the talents of French indie superstar Philippe Katerine for
inspiration and production. In addition to writing (or co-writing)
all 11 songs on the album, Katerine generously provides his
backing band, the Recyclers, to round out the project. In keeping
with her musical roots, Noguerra and Katerine craft wispy, dreamy -
- almost lazy -- bossa nova crossed with a jazzy edge sung mostly
in Portuguese. The production is warm and intimate. Helena's
delivery is soft and sultry, possessing a hazy quality that blurs
distinctions between songs. Gentle, sophisticated, and quite nice.

MARK GRANT "Sound Design V.2" (Om) CD $15.99
Chicago native and deep house ambassador Mark Grant has put
together a sophisticated mix of vocal garage, a little latin
flavor, lots of house and some disco ditties, for volume two in
Om's "Sound Design" series. Relentless boogie in an unstable
groove that shifts like thick sand under your feet. [GA]

BEIKOKU ONGAKU "Issue 18" (Beikoku Ongaku, Japan) Magazine+CD  $17.99
New issue of this ultra-styley Japanese mag (+CD) with features on
artist Guy Peelleart, Air, Michele Lockwood, the next installment
of their 2000 discs of the century series, more. CD contains
tracks by Tipsy, Peggy Honeywell, Ursula 1000, Monokini, Steven,
Mia Doi Todd, and many others.

APPLES IN STEREO "Let's Go!" (Spinart) CD EP $6.99
RealAudio: /ramgen/othermusic/applesSS.rm
Apples in Stereo capitalizing on the gem 'Signal in the Sky' they
wrote for the Powerpuff Girls' album. With a few demos and
outtakes (5 songs total, including a cover of the Beach
Boys' 'Heroes and Villians'). Though fun and great, I keep
thinking this was a missed opportunity to add a bunch of remixes
of this song (It could _easily_ be made into a big slamming dance
hit by way of Basement Jaxx or someone) or at least a video!
Kiddie-friendly with silly lyrics and sweet harmonies. [RE]


REIKO KUDO "Rice Field Silently Riping In The Night (Majikick/Periodic Document, Japan) CD  $14.99
RealAudio: /ramgen/othermusic/Rkudo1.rm
RealAudio: /ramgen/othermusic/Rkudo2.rm
A short, sweet album of lilting beauty and disarming fragility.
Essentially, Maher Shalal Hash Baz in everything but name, but
from the feminine perspective of the very talented Reiko, wife of
M.S.H.B. leader Tori Kudo. " 'Rice Field...' sees Reiko
(establishing a) pattern of short songs mostly based around one-
finger piano motifs, so structurally simple as to be virtually
transparent. This time, additional flashes of sensitive
instrumental colour are added by husband Tori and various members
of the Puka-Puka Brians on wavering backing vocals, violin,
guitar, euphonium and percussion. The music treads a sure and
private path between a perfect childlike naivete and the amateur
aesthetic that has long been Tori's goal. Reiko sings of life,
dying flowers, love, and nursing home residents with the unforced
naturalness of a mother alone with her child, a bird in the
forest, her pellucid melodies seemingly accidental. It is nothing
short of heart-stoppingly gorgeous. And as an honest-to- god
example of happiness glimpsed through the quotidian, artistic
perfection all the more perfect for not being striven for, you
couldn't wish for anything more. A perfect prescription for those
moments of fragility when you doubt your own pulse." -Alan
Cummings. [JG]

MAHER SHALAL HASH BAZ "Souvenir de Mauve" (Majikick, Japan) CD  $18.99
RealAudio: /ramgen/othermusic/MHSB1.rm
RealAudio: /ramgen/othermusic/MHSB2.rm
MSHB keep their ineptitude as inspiration (much as, say, Nihilist
Spasm Band does), but once they start playing, their songs are
cohesive, melodic, tangible and precious, even as they're made
from tuneless singing, off-key trumpet, and drums that seem
compact but loosen and fall apart in places. Imagine Burt
Bacharach trying to use calm, poised preschoolers in his
arrangements. Or '60s beat rock as if practiced by Buddhist monks.
About half of it documents one of Tori Kudo's solo piano
performances, with one track, aptly titled 'The Day My Piano
Came', of aimless, naive noodling. Footing is regained with a 24-
minute piano jazz number that meanders while staying in a
subconscious rhythm, as if guided by an underground river.
Enigmatic. [RE]

This week's contributors: Geoff Albores [GA], Tom Capodanno [TC],
Kris Chen [KC], Robin Edgerton [RE], Gian Carlo Feleppa [GF], Jeff
Gibson [JG], Tim Haslett [TH], Casey Keenan [CK], Michael Klausman

The Big Picture:

To see a complete list of Other Music new releases for the
week ending July 24, 2001, use this link as a shortcut:

To see a list of new releases from previous weeks:

To see new release updates from previous weeks:

To order any of the items you see on these pages simply click
the links following each review or visit our Web site at

Phone orders are accepted at (212) 477-8150 (ext. #2, mailorder).

For general inquiries or other information, please email
"sales@othermusic.com". Do not reply to this message.

Thanks for reading.
-all of us at Other Music

Other Music NYC
15 E. 4th Street
New York, NY 10003

Other Music Harvard Square
90 Winthrop Street
Cambridge, MA 02138