Other Music New Release Update
October 10, 2001

In This Week's Update:

Daft Punk live
Death Cab for Cutie
"500% Dynamite" reggae comp.
"Champion Sound" reggae comp.
"Simply Rockers" reggae comp.
Beachwood Sparks
Kit Clayton
Christian Kleine
Sun City Girls
Jenny Toomey
Joe Pernice reissue
James William Hindle
De La Soul
This Heat "Deceit" remastered
Heavenly reissue
Coupla Prog reissue
Fashion Pink reissue
Stewart Walker reissue
Golden Boy w/Miss Kittin
Low CD single
Roky Erickson live
Radioactive Man (Keith Tenniswood)

Just In:
Kid Loco
Nurse With Wound debut album reissue + bonus
Susumu Yokota
Negativland 'U2' reissue

Mink Lungs
the Strokes
Philip (now on Momus' label)

This Week:

DAFT PUNK "Alive 1997" (Virgin, UK) CD/LP $18.99/$13.99

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This is a live recording from November 1997, one continuous 45-
minute track. "Alive" documents an earlier, stripped-down Daft
Punk, minus the synth-pop frivolity of the more recent "Discovery"
album. The duo are all about the dancefloor on this one, tweaking
effects and stretching and distorting loops so stealthily that,
six minutes in, your head nod morphs into a full body stomp.
When they speed it up -- paydirt! -- intense throbbing beats reach
multi-climactic heights and ricochet between hard minimal house
and raw electro funk.THIS IS SO HOT, you won't be able to stop
moving. It's clear they owned the crowd that night in Manchester.
CD //perl-bin/OM/CD_Add_To_Cart.cgi?sku=72438111392&refer_url=email
LP //perl-bin/OM/CD_Add_To_Cart.cgi?sku=72438111391&refer_url=email

GERBILS "The Battle of Electricity" (Orange Twin) CD $12.99
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A record which scratches so many Elephant 6 itches--so much so
that the Gerbils can almost seem like a parody of those groups at
the same time as holding their unique place in the fortress. (Half
of the Gerbils [Jeremy Barnes and Scott Spillane] are also half of
Neutral Milk Hotel, which immediately links them in sound. The
other half of the Gerbils, John D'Azzo and Will Westbrook, pinch-
hit for NMH, too.) The album has 8 short, lovely instrumental (or
instrumental + hums) interludes and 10 songs. They do a Jeff
Mangum-esque whine on 'Meteoroid From the Sun Strikes A Dead
Weirdo', though the majority of the disc is like getting an NMH
record minus Mangum -- D'Azzo and Spillane have much more
normal-boy voices. There's the bash-crash of NMH, the pop
soaring of the Apples, a noble psychedelia a la Olivia Tremor
Control (especially on 'The White Sky'). This is their second
album, though the first was mostly a comp of singles -- so this
is really their first album, and it is an admirable 'debut'. [RE]

DEATH CAB FOR CUTIE "The Photo Album" (Barsuk) CD $13.99
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Bellingham, WA's indie pop favorites are back with their third
full-length, "The Photo Album."  Alongside Built to Spill and
Modest Mouse, Death Cab For Cutie are rare standouts from most of
the other bands of this emotive ilk for the simple fact their well-
executed arrangements and self-effacing singers don't feel
calculated. Supported by a trademark swirl of guitars,
frontman/lyricist Benjamin Gibbard's languid vocal delivery covers
more personal territory and is less obscure than previous efforts.
Although Gibbard's words and melodies are obtuse enough to make a
love song compelling, the subtle push and pull of the  guitars are
still the Cab's greatest strength. The angular interplay of
acoustic versus electric in 'We Laugh Indoors' slowly circles
around a steady drumbeat until finally exploding into a guitar
break that would bring a smile to Doug Martsch's face. [GH]

[V/A] "Champion Sound" (Virgin, France) CD/LP $15.99/$16.99
[V/A] "500% Dynamite (Soul Jazz, UK) CD/LP $18.99/$18.99
[V/A] "Simply Rockers: Jamaican Music From The Vaults" (Trojan, UK) CD/LP $15.99/$18.99

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Roots reggae enthusiasts are presently enjoying an embarrassment
of riches. Beyond the domain of the Pressure Sounds and Blood &
Fire imprints, there are now innumerable roots, dub, and
rocksteady re-issue labels. And who's complaining? This
renaissance couldn't be more timely. It is becoming more apparent
that Jamaican music of the 70s underpins every form of dance and
electronic music. That phrases such as "dub version" passed into
common parlance at the beginning of the disco era and remains in
circulation is no surprise. It's also not a shock to find that
each of these three distinct, brilliant collections contain Ken
Boothe's 'Is It Because I'm Black?', a cover of the gem originally
recorded by Syl Johnson in 1968. This is heartbreak pressed on
wax. "Champion Sound" is novel in that it brings together
contemporary 'conscious' dancehall artists such as the visionary
Sizzla, Beres Hammond, and Mr. Vegas alongside Peter Tosh and
Johnny Clarke. The Soul Jazz label is run by sub rosa genuises.
That is the only way to explain the beautifully selected "500%
Dynamite", the fifth in this stellar series. This collection makes
clear that funk was a part of the Jamaican musical world. The
inclusion of Augustus Pablo's 'East of the River Nile' makes this
a mandatory acquisition already, and then Sister Charmaine's 'The
Body' begins and your body goes limp. Marcia Griffith's aching,
desolate rendering of Freda Payne's 'Band of Gold' has the same
bodily effect on "Simply Rockers". This also contains Derrick
Harriott's 'Psychedelic Train', a rarity with a swaying rocksteady
skank and hallucinogenic properties to boot. And U Roy, The
Ethiopians, and Tommy McCook provide more Trenchtown rhythmic
soul. Taken together, these three compilations have the effect of
having a down pillow injected into one's bloodstream. You won't
get any closer to the sublime. [TH]
"Champion Sound" CD
"Champion Sound" LP

"500% Dynamite" CD
"500% Dynamite" LP

"Simply Rockers" CD
"Simply Rockers" LP

BEACHWOOD SPARKS "Once We Were Trees" (Sub Pop) CD $13.99
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Beachwood Sparks have certainly avoided the dreaded sophomore
slump with their second full-length, "Once We Were Trees." Picking
up from last year's wonderful debut, the boys of Southern Cali
still proudly wear their Buffalo Springfield and Flying Burrito
Brothers patches on their western shirtsleeves, but their
kaleidoscopic country stylings are far from imitation. Recorded
last spring in J. Mascis' studio with producer Thom Monahan
turning the reverb up a few notches, "Once We Were Trees" is much
more expressive than their previous album. The continuity between
rave-ups, ballads and psych-outs is perfectly held together by a
melancholy pedal steel. Song for song, Beachwood Sparks have
delivered a perfect and aptly-titled record for a little bit of
California dreaming, right when the leaves are changing. [GH]

KIT CLAYTON "Lateral Forces (Surface Fault)" (Vertical Form, UK) CD $16.99
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San Franciscan Kit Clayton's newest is, quite possibly, his best
yet. One continuous 38-minute mix (thoughtfully indexed) in which
he does with mist/water sounds what Vladislav Delay does with a
space 20 fathoms under the ocean. The concept for the album --
which may drive it's structure -- is scientific: seismic activity seen
worldwide from 1999-2001. In fact, the activity/inactivity
patterns on the whole take the same path as an earthquake's
graph, with peaks and aftershocks that turn into beats in
sections. "Lateral Forces" takes the next step of ambient music,
not making a pulseless environment, but with one that's so divided
it's close to being a continuous grain of white noise. Full of a
shimmering calm, thrilling and modest. [RE]

BROTHOMSTATES "Claro" (Warp) CD $14.99
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Brothomstates, aka Lassi Nikko, releases his first album (another
one, in mp3 form, online notwithstanding) on Warp. Not a broad
departure for the label, "Claro" is also an industrial record. Not
one that would stand (or would want to stand) anywhere near NIN --
remember, Kraftwerk were once considered industrial (before that
aesthetic was entirely co-opted by Goths), and this is an
extension of their rhythmic explorations of the mid '70s, merged
with an early '90s Warp sound. The melodies aren't drilled into
your head a la K-werk -- they usually are delicately lifted above
the clanking and metallic slaps. The rhythms are interrupted as
often as they are drawn out; a careful crafting to the music, no
barrage in evidence. A few tracks keep the repetitions of the
early minimalists (Reich, Riley) in mind as they bring those
structures into the age of electronics. For all that this reads
like it would sound like every other record made, Brothomstates
actually works this into, admirably, his own thing, even if it's a
little hard to describe what exactly that thing is! How
about 'industrial disco'? [RE]

CHRISTIAN KLEINE "Beyond Repair" (City Centre Offices, Germany) CD/LP $14.99/$12.99
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A strange record, with sweepy, tinny synths a la the Cure (real
mid-'80s synths) and minimal German beats, tingly Boards of Canada
bells, dub, and, well, lots more. Kleine's newest keeps a beat but
it's almost inadvertent -- he's trying to make atmospheres most of
all. All electronic, there's seemingly not a shred of anything
acoustic, yet he's still obtaining warmth out of all the ice cubes
he throws in the mix. A conglomerate of a record, in the
geological sense -- a number of substances wedded together in
a sealed, dense mass. Fans of Pilote, Monolake, even some of
Brinkmann's more active work will probably like this. [RE]
CD //perl-bin/OM/CD_Add_To_Cart.cgi?sku=09999165262&refer_url=email
LP //perl-bin/OM/CD_Add_To_Cart.cgi?sku=09999165321&refer_url=email

SUN CITY GIRLS "Carnival Folklore Resurrection #8: The Handsome Stranger" (Abduction) CD $13.99
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The latest installment of the Carnival Folklore Resurrection
series is most reminiscent of 1996's "Dante's Disneyland Inferno".
Full of vocals, "the Handsome Stranger" has some of the Bishop
brothers' creepiest and funniest rants to date. The music is
sparsely arranged, from Partch-like microtonal clonkings and
thunkings to swinging jazz. Some songs consist only of piano,
drums, and Bishop's constant sneering. Be sure to hide the kids
during 'Foley's Halloween', a twisted piece set at "the River Styx
Saloon", where the Bishop's storytelling gets as strange as ever.
Richard Bishop's piano playing is quite lovely throughout the
album, but you're in for it when he starts singing. A bizarre new
Sun City Girls volume. [CK]

JENNY TOOMEY "Antidote" (Misra) 2xCD $14.99
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Throughout the nineties, the musical output of Jenny Toomey was a
never-ending flow of creation and contribution via her main band
Tsunami, numerous side-projects and her very respected Simple
Machines record label. So it seems strange that following the 1997
release of Tsunami's elegant swan song, "Brilliant Mistake," she
would take such a long absence from music. Granted, Toomey's hands
have been pretty full the past year or two spearheading the
musician's rights advocacy group, Future of Music Coalition.) Four
years later she returns with her first-ever solo record -- also her
finest to date. Spread over two CDs, "Antidote" pulls all of
Toomey's strengths, from the quiet restraint of Liquorice to the
ambitious arrangements of latter-day Tsunami, and then fills in
any holes with a wider array of influences. "Antidote" is also an
obvious document to the painful breaths of a tumultuous
relationship about to expire; Toomey has never sung so personally
as now. Disc one, "Chicago," is produced with the assistance of
the Pulsars' David Trumfio and features a who's-who lineup of
Tsunami cohorts Amy Domingues and Trip Gray as well as Dan
Littleton (Liquorice/Ida), the Aluminum Group's John Navin, Edith
Frost and Andrew Bird. More upbeat than disc two, "Chicago" is
still quiet, driven by plenty of strings, piano and pedal steel
and stands on that quiet nicely. Disc two, "Nashville", is far
more introspective and soulful. Joined by gospel/country producer
Mark Never (Vic Chesnutt) and six members of Lambchop, it is also
more daring in its arrangements. The painfully honest 'The Smell
of Him' drifts into a quiet jazz break with piano and trumpet
solos and transforms into perhaps one of the most beautiful "fuck-
you's" ever recorded. And while Toomey's rendition of Curtis
Mayfield's 'Fool for You' is faithful to the original, she sings
it as if it were her personal confession. Simply brilliant! [GH]

JOE PERNICE "Big Tobacco" (Ashmont) CD $13.99
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Thank your lucky stars that Joe Pernice still writes beautiful pop
songs about feelings most people would rather not talk about,
because there are very few songwriters in that league. Pernice's
chord changes resound with the pain and bitterness of someone who
so thoroughly damaged both psychically and physiologically his
life. That he can sing his shattering songs without a trace of
self-pity is what makes him one of North America's great poets of
despair in a lineage that can be traced to Townes Van Zandt or
Neil Young. The songs on "Big Tobacco" were mostly written when
Pernice was in his former band, Scud Mountain Boys, but the
players are drawn from the Pernice Brothers, and thus this sublime
record has the feeling of a lost session by the latter band,
though Pernice's voice and guitar dominate. This is an album of
rare genius. [TH]

JAMES WILLIAM HINDLE "s/t" (Badman) CD $12.99
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James William Hindle's self titled debut on Badman collects eight
somber and sweet songs that seem perfectly appropriate on a label
responsible for releasing the solo work from Red House Painter
Mark Kozelek. These slow songs are nothing short of heart-
wrenching, earnest and sincere. Originally hailing from Yorkshire,
England, Hindle's delivery pairs British folk influences with
subtle country touches, bridging the gap between Nick Drake and
the Scud Mountain Boys. Like Kozelek, Hindle transforms others'
songs with his distinctive voice: his renditions of 'I Started A
Joke' (Bee Gees) and 'Less of Me' (Glen Campbell) are simply
lovely. Sometimes the hardest records to describe are the ones
that are made up of great songs without any trickery or excessive
arrangements, and Hindle's debut is the classic example of this;
a sparse collection of simple and timeless songwriting. [PW]

DE LA SOUL "3 Feet High And Rising" (Tommy Boy) 2xCD $16.99
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When all is said and done, there is no argument about De La Soul's
debut. It's clearly one of the top five most influential hip-hop
records of all time. Regardless of your opinion of their politics,
their fashion choices, or their ultimate place in the hip-hop
cosmos, there is no trio that turns a party out like Amityville's
finest. For Tommy Boy's 20th birthday, the label has remastered
the original album (it does sound better than ever). They have
also kindly offered a second "limited edition" CD of outtakes,
some clearly too racy for 1989, and a couple of bangin' remixes of
the singles -- like 'Me, Myself And I', 'Say No Go' and an amazing
extended remix of 'Plug Tunin''. If you're having a party soon,
get this immediately. If not, in the next week or two. It's worth
every penny. [DD]

THIS HEAT "Deceit" (These, UK) CD $18.99
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Hi! My name is Dan, I work here, and this album, which has been re-
issued on CD, is, in my opinion, among the finest albums ever, in
both conception and execution. Hyper-political and visceral yet
organic and "complete" feeling: It not only meets the aesthetic
criteria that I have naturally arrived at in my life, it is one of
the works of art that has determined them for me (to myself, I
mean...er....see! words fail!). It ranks alongside: Spacemen
3's "Playing with Fire", Big Star's "3rd", Miles Davis/Gil
Evans' "Porgy and Bess", Dead C's "Harsh 70's Reality" and Amon
Duul's "Psychedelic Underground". [DHo]

HEAVENLY "Heavenly Versus Satan" (K) CD $13.99
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Heavenly weigh in with an expanded reissue of their finest
album. "Heavenly Versus Satan" was released in England and Japan
in 1990 but has remained inexplicably out of print worldwide for
nearly eight years. Formed out of the remnants of C86 icons
Talulah Gosh, Heavenly had a wonderfully sparkling and uniquely
propulsive sound enveloping Amelia Fletcher's wistful yet
determinedly self-assured singing that somehow managed to keep
them above the twee fray. K have added six tracks from rare
singles releases, bolstering an already fantastic record. [JG]

COUPLA PROG "Sprite" (Long Hair, Germany) CD $16.99
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Bring out yer Druids! These two sessions recorded for Germany's
SWF Radio between 1970 and 1971 from this heretofore undocumented
heavy Krautrock ensemble beckon devotees of Hawkwind, Xhol
Caravan, and Pink Floyd alike. Coupla Prog (either short for A
Couple Of Progs or reputedly the name of a sorcerer from the
Middle Ages) gigged extensively through Bavaria and Baden-Baden in
the early '70s but were never able to secure a record deal. They'd
even worked out a 60-minute "space-opera" as well (a forthcoming
Long Hair release) but found no takers in an era well before DIY.
Decidedly underground stuff full of extensive psychedelic jamming
laced with blues and classical references, free improvisation and
electronic flourishes, "Sprite" unveils a long-forgotten gem that
almost never was. Seven lengthy tracks; 55 minutes. [JG]

FASHION PINK "?To Brainstorm" (Long Hair, Germany) CD $16.99
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Another enigma thought to have been lost in the ether, Fashion
Pink, as they're known on this release, went on to become
Brainstorm, one of Krautrock's more notorious acolytes in the
Church Of The Mothers Of Invention. Fortunately for us, they were
all chops and managed to dispense with the incumbent silliness
that might be expected as such. This CD presents two previously
unreleased sessions recorded for Germany's SWF Radio between
1970 and 1971 and finds the group in full-flower, showcasing their
distinct blend of songs and reeds-driven instrumentals, treading
on ground shared by Soft Machine, Caravan and Holland's
brilliantly underrated Supersister. Following a brief period as
Fashion Prick (somebody please revive that one!), the band settled
on Brainstorm and released two highly-acclaimed masterpieces on
Spiegelei. 64 minutes of electric-progressive mayhem! [JG]

FIGURINE "The Heartfelt" (March) CD $13.99
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I was first exposed to Figurine by stumbling across them on
Napster. At the time, not knowing anything about the band, I was
convinced they were the genuine article: circa-1980 new wave. Even
though they're not, I can still utterly respect what they're
doing. In fact, this newest Figurine album is a complete surprise.
Their last CD was a bit of hard-edged, upbeat electropop a la '80s
superstars such as OMD or Depeche Mode. This one is rendered soft
and subtle, with electropop beats filtered soft in the background,
wispy vocals (male and female) in the foreground. Think an early
urban indie-pop (like Postcard records) aesthetic given over to
Thomas Dolby's production methods -- shimmery and whisper-thin
and so heartbreaking. If you love the first two Magnetic Fields
records ("Distant Plastic Trees" and "The Wayward Bus"), you'll
probably love this too. [RE]

STEWART WALKER "Reclamation: 1997-1999" (Persona) CD $12.99
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The peripatetic Stewart Walker has finally settled down. But not
at all in the late middle-aged sense,. Instead, he has decided to
retain control over all his music and release all forthcoming
material on his own Persona label. The first CD to be released on
the new imprint is an impeccable collection of tracks recorded
and/or released before "Stabiles". What is immediately evident is
that Walker's imagination is broader than many of the clicks n'
cuts panoply. The opening blast, 'Meer-Mir' has hi-hats sliding
into the mix like the silver ball in a pinball machine, before the
paddles send them hurtling upwards. A grainy synth pulse
complements the thin but tense melody. The unreleased 'Intonation'
surprises with its squirming acid bassline, nearly out of fashion
these days, which is why it is so refreshing--particularly in a
track with this kind of compressed energy and gothic tones. From
his first releases on, there was never any doubt that Stewart
Walker was an artist of considerable skill. This collection of
tracks confirms that and leaves the listener wanting more. And
more will come. [TH]

GOLDEN BOY W/MISS KITTIN "Or" (Ladomat, Germany) CD $15.99
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(Another) electro-disco (mini) album. Tracks are alternately poppy
and dancefloor friendly for your listening pleasure. What's
special about this one? Well, first, Ms. Kittin of "...and the
Hacker" graces us with her vocal presence, most effectively on the
soon-to-be-a-hit, 'Rippin Kittin': an ill-fitting track name,
since the track is neither grinding nor macho at all. Instead it
has that '80s disco-pop feel-cum-integrity that the Ladomat label
pulls off so well. Other tracks vary from the J-pop-
ish 'Autopilot', to the full-on rumbling dancefloor
grinder, 'Nix'. The whole package is very tastefully wrapped up
w/the sophisticated,deep disco of 'kopfstand'...my vote for 2nd-
best track on the album. [SM]

LOW "Last Night I Dreamt That Somebody Loved Me" (Chairkicker's Music) CD single $6.99
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Low's newest single combines a simply grand, glossy (for them)
cover of this Smiths' tune with an original and a Quicktime video
of 'Dinasaur Act'. On the band's own label, Chairkicker's Music.

ROKY ERICKSON AND THE EXPLOSIVES "Casting the Runes" (Re, Germany) CD $13.99
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Originally released as a limited edition picture disc in 1987 (but
recorded several years earlier), this live album is an amazing
snapshot of Roky at the peak of his solo career, howling with the
vampires and walking with the zombies. The story goes that this
band was together for only one show. Indeed there is not a single
member in common with the Aliens (the band that recorded his all-
time classic 1980 CBS record), but these guys are far from hacks,
in particular, Cam King's lead guitar is a fierce compliment to
Roky's wail. The band whips these songs into a fury, (literally)
playing the hell out of most of the finest gems from that album.
Sound quality is superb, an excellent board recording, with almost
no crowd noise or stage patter even between songs (was anyone
even there to hear this blistering set?). The versions are similar
to the studio recordings in form, but live the band has a punk-rock
immediacy and fire that makes this record essential for longtime
fans as well as those uninitiated to the cult of this Texas fire
demon. [JM]

RADIOACTIVE MAN "Machine Rock Specialists" (Rotters Golf Club, UK) CD/LP $15.99/$16.99
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When the infamous Two Lone Swordsmen want to pursue solo projects
under other pseudonyms, they turn to their superb Rotters Golf
Club label, which has, thus far, released three singles and now a
full-length record by Keith Tenniswood in his Radioactive Man
guise (royalties paid to Matt Groening?). When Andrew Weatherall
and Tenniswood are apart, they make music that bares little
resemblance to their collaborative work. The track that really
burns is 'Strong Booze,' remixed by Transparent Sound and
turned into a giant, angry spheric groove with hi-hats that snap
like wafers under the pressure of the bassline. 'Major' is another
juggernaut, plowing through city streets. It functions in two
ways: testing the limits of your eardrum and the kick drum.
Tenniswood knows very well that repetitive 4/4 beats are going
to bore pretty much everyone, so he embellishes his tracks with
idiosyncratic noises, reverse kick drums and asbestos scraping.
This is one strictly for the hardheads. [TH]
CD //perl-bin/OM/CD_Add_To_Cart.cgi?sku=80965145012&refer_url=email
LP //perl-bin/OM/CD_Add_To_Cart.cgi?sku=80965145011&refer_url=email

Just In:

KID LOCO "Kill Your Darlings" (Atlantic) CD $16.99
His pop record! Full review next week.

NURSE WITH WOUND "Chance Meeting On A Dissecting Table..." (World Serpent, UK) CD $16.99
The 21st anniversary reissue of Steven Stapleton's debut
(originally released in 1979), now remastered and bolstered by
one, long bonus track. Psych chaos and noise freedom. Even
includes the famous NWW list in the booklet!

SUSUMU YOKOTA "Zero" (Exceptional, UK) CD $17.99
Yokota's work, over the years, falls into two distinct categories:
the experimental electronic, and the rollicking house/trance. This
is the first to branch from one towards the other -- it's solidly a
house/trance record but has traces of the experimental and
plenty of vocals, both welcome changes in the formula.

NEGATIVLAND "These Guys Are From England...And Who Gives a Shit" (Seelard) CD $13.99
Now that copyright and fair use issues are on the back
burner, Negativland slip out this 'reissue' which includes
their famous 'U2' cover, the subject of their "Fair Use" book,
with 9 extra tracks, all of which relate to this and its
subsequent court case in some way, including the original
piece from Don Joyce's "Over the Edge" radio show, a clean
version, and seven live pieces. Cleverly released on
'Seelard' records -- to sidestep any subsequent lawsuits?


MINK LUNGS "The Better Button" (Arena Rock) CD $13.99
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The debut album from quite possibly NYC's best live band--at least
the most eclectic one around. On "The Better Button", their
singsong indie rock has a thin layer of fuzzy love guitar (which
sometimes burns up into cinders) and clarion keyboard. Some new
wave roots show in twisted songs of romance coupled with the
absurd, and this quartet like to throw the unexpected about (a lot
of sped-up and slowed-down samples become rhythm accentuators
or rhythm-busters). An unusual aspect to "The Better Button" is that
it masks a marvelous sense of literary/storytelling beneath a
veneer of indie sloppiness--there's much to dive for inside a song,
and it takes a few listenings to fully grasp. Fun through and
through, even though it's awfully catchy, all signs point
to "Rock!" -- they have a spine and know how to use it. [RE]

THE STROKES "This Is It" (RCA) CD $14.99
RealAudio: /ramgen/othermusic/LastNite.rm
RealAudio: /ramgen/othermusic/strokeIT.rm
In less than a year, the Strokes have become the most sought-after
rock band by record labels and fans as well as a pursuit of
paparazzi normally reserved for royalty. The band charismatically
wear their influences (most often the sounds of downtown NYC circa
1977), but several months of constant playing and the
reward of a recording budget has let these Bowery boys show they
have more than a few colors on their musical palette. Guitarists
Nick Valensi and Albert Hammond play nicely off of each other as
they alternate between strums, choppy upstrokes, and yes, the
occasional rock solo.  Meanwhile, singer Julian Casablanca's
supercharged croon-and-sneer falls somewhere between Mark E.
Smith and David Gedge. The bouncy rhythm and Johnny Marr-
inspired plucks of 'Someday' are convincing enough to earn them
the key to the gates of Manchester. Forgive the hype.
[Please Note: One track ('NYC Cops') has been removed from this
domestic release but another track track has been added in its place.
Also features different artwork than the imports.] [GH]

PHILIP "Pet Cancer" (American Patchwork) CD $12.99
RealAudio: /ramgen/othermusic/philip2.rm
Musically, Philips' going for a a merging of old lo-fi Beck and
glossy new Beck: rambly vocals and strummed acoustic guitar with
burbling electronic beats and dazzling flashes of pop psychedelia.
Like Tall Dwarfs if they were one hermitlike guy: his cool
rhythmic textures struggle like a mouse caught in a trap; the lo-
fi blippage and rhythms list out of key (how do you make a Casio
do that?). A record seemingly directly inspired by both the
Residents' use of cyclical, seasick paths of electronic sound and
Sebadoh's ("III"-era) weakling accusation-rock. Both bouncy and
disturbing -- what more could you want? Now an official release on
Momus' new label, with new cover art. [RE]

This week's contributors: David Day [DD], Robin Edgerton [RE],
Jeff Gibson [JG], Gerald Hammill [GH], Tim Haslett [TH], Dan
Hougland [DHo], Casey Keenan [CK], Nicole Lang [NL], Josh
Madell [JM], Scott Mou [SM], Phil Waldorf [PW].

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