Other Music New Release Update
September 5, 2001

In This Week's Update:

Dymaxion compilation
Miles Davis Live 1970
Harvester reissue
Gescom reissue
Bladder Flask reissue
The Faint
Pipes You See, Pipes You Don't
F.S. Blumm
Mogwai/Bardo Pond 10"
Mush Filmstrip comp.
Oneness of Juju reissue
Chris Lee
Airport 5
Boxhead Ensemble
Up Bustle and Out
Preston School of Industry
Turntables by the Bay
Blood and Fire remixes

Just In:
Neutral Milk Hotel "Everything Is" single
Truby Trio "DJ Kicks"
Margo Guryan demos CD

Fugu domestic
"Downtown 81" soundtrack

Featured New Releases:

STEREOLAB "Sound-Dust" (Elektra) CD $15.99
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Described by Tim Ganes, Stereolab's leading technician, as "more
impressionistic," 'Sound-Dust' is also one of the band's most
somber collections in recent years. The two-minute instrumental
opener, 'Black Ants in Sound-Dust,' shares the tone of a classic
sci-fi film score in eerie, multiplying synthesizer bleeps
resolved with dissonant horn crescendoes. With production credits
listing longtime cohorts John McEntire, Jim O'Rourke and Sean
O'Hagan, Stereolab have added to their arsenal new instruments
like the pedal steel guitar and extensive string and horn
arrangements. Noticeably absent, however, are the burps, chirps
and gurgles, once a groop signature. (Also absent is longtime-
member Morgane Lhote.) Still, Stereolab are far from abandoning
their post-modern pop approach, and 'Sound-Dust' is easily the
missing link between "Emperor Tomato Ketchup" and "Dots and
Loops." Their ninth proper release also features some of
the 'Lab's most ambitious arrangements to date. The album version
of 'Captain Easychord' takes an unexpected shift worthy of a
separate track listing. 'Nothing To Do With Me,' featuring
borrowed lyrics from a sketch by English TV comedian Chris Morris,
and 'Hallucinex' are some of the LP's brightest moments, with any
experiment in sounds and structure nicely tempered by Laetitia
Sadier's softly-sung melodies. Make no mistake, Stereolab continue
to go from strength to strength. "Sound-Dust" stands among the
groop's finest, a must for new fans and diehards alike. [GH]
[PLEASE NOTE: Arrival of the limited-edition "Sound-Dust" CDs
and vinyl that were due this week from Duophonic UK has been
pushed back 2 to 3 weeks due to production delays. The version
offered below is the regular domestic edition. We'll announce in
this update when the limited versions are available.]

DYMAXION "Dymaxion x 4 + 3 = 38:33" (Roomtone) CD $12.99
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The first CD release from enigmatic NYC outfit Dymaxion. This
disk collects their long-deleted first 7-inchers and assorted
compilation tracks (on Hemiola, Roomtone, Vesuvius, Duophonic,
Dark Beloved Cloud). Dymaxion's methods during this period were
fun: group member Claudia Newell (also an excellent computer
illustrator) would cobble together collages of popular and obscure
musics into pop songs (a bit like Plunderphonics) on Sound Edit  --
then the band would attempt to play these catchy tracks with odd
rhythms and shifts. 18 works of brilliantly fractured retro-futurist
art-pop and rock. Highly recommended. [TC/RE]

BJORK "Vespertine" (Elektra/Polydor, UK) CD $14.99
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Our Icelandic princess is fully matured. Seeing her on Letterman
last night, it struck me how much she's aged from the infant
presence she had in the Sugarcubes. Now the avant matron, she was
dressed in Icelandic tribal colors, as serious as she ever was. On
her left was harpist Zeena Parkins, on the right, Powerbooks and
all, was Matmos, behind her stood a choir of women from Greenland--
all on national network TV. "Vespertine" reflects her new status;
a beautiful, intimate record of stillness, breadth and breath. Ms.
Goodmunsdottir's inhales and exhales act as an instrument on their
own, more pronounced than ever. To be sure, "Homogenic" was
an unqualified masterpiece: terrestrial, instinctive, and sometimes
harsh. As Bjork has said herself, "Vespertine" is in the opposite
direction: alien, deliberate and sometimes majestically pretty.
Bjork embraces the squibs and glips of Matmos while becoming more
comfortable in her own head. A fierce contender for headphone
record of the year, let "Vespertine" envelope you, and you'll find
little else as comforting. [DD]

MILES DAVIS "Live At The Fillmore East (March 7, 1970)" (Columbia Legacy) 2xCD $23.99
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Subtitled: "It's About That Time". And lovers of "Bitches Brew"
will be shouting exactly that from their rooftops when they get a
load of this top-notch double-disc serving of both sets that found
Miles and crew opening for The Steve Miller Band and Neil Young
& Crazy Horse. These shows also marked Wayne Shorter's last
stand with Davis as a regular before departing the fold. Chick
Corea, Dave Holland, Jack DeJohnette, and Airto Moreira rounded
out this astoundingly muscular sextet. "The contents of these two
volumes contain: epigrammatic themes yielding modal blowing in
overdrive; stabbing, splintered, yet strangely graceful trumpet
phrases; hard, fast or stomping grooves and riotous, utterly free
stanzas; Corea's distorted, Echoplex-triggered keyboard chord
clusters, suggesting Stockhausen debating Sun Ra?"-James Isaacs,
from his liner notes. And then there's Shorter, and his incredible
interplay with Miles, the two horns soaring side by side on
sheer guts and intuition as Moreira's Brazilian percussion fills
augment the rock-solid rhythmic funk laid down by Holland and
DeJohnette. It all must have been kinda overwhelming for the
hipsters at the Fillmore that night; the release of "Bitches Brew"
was still a month away. Sadly, the unfortunate CD booklet/slipcase
combo leaves the usually fly-looking Miles looking more like The
Fly (avec horn!) surrounded by multi-chromatic 3rd-rate
photoshopped Bridget Riley-esque dot patterns (so, like, psych-o-
delic, man!) complete with faux-stenciled "road crew" lettering,
just in case we miss the idea that it's a live album. Jeesh!
Nevertheless, everyone should check this out. [JG]

MAZARIN "A Tall-Tale Storyline" (SpinArt) CD $14.99
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Quentin Stoltzfus' claim to indie-rock fame was his role as the
drummer in the live incarnation of Philadelphia space-rock band
The Azusa Plane. This role as sideman should quickly become a
small footnote in Stoltzfus' biography, now that he has released
his second album under the Mazarin moniker. "A Tall-Tale
Storyline" collects 11 subtly psychedelic pop songs which cover
all kinds of terrain, from the dreamy ('Go Home') to sugary pop
ballads ('A Tell-Tale Storyline').  Playing most of the
instruments himself, Stolzfus songs are equally memorable for
their hooks as their lovely layered production. Mazarin touches
on a who's who of indie-rock past (Unrest) and present (Belle &
Sebastian, Apples in Stereo), but instead of sounding derivative,
it is more likely that only his record collection mirrors that of
his indie-rock peers. "A Tall-Tale Storyline" is successful as it
is simple; rather than trying to rewrite the book on indie-rock,
Mazarin coolly and confidently follows in the footsteps of some of
the finest pop craftsmen of the past and present. [PW]

HARVESTER "Hemat" (Decibel, Sweden) CD $14.99
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Harvester (originally International Harvester) carried forward
from the Swedish tribal geniuses responsible for the brilliant
Parson Sound. In 1969 they released "Hemat" ("Homeward"), their
second album of unbelievably fried trance-rock with traditional
folk flourishes here and there. As essential as any Amon Duul I or
Taj Mahal Travellers record I can think of offhand -- and that is
very high praise indeed. Following "Hemat", Harvester morphed
into Trad Gras Och Stenar for yet another four albums or so of
sustained wonderfulness. Highest recommendation! [JG]

ONEIDA "Anthem of the Moon" (Jagjaguwar) CD $12.99
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Oneida's newest CD (I think it's their fourth), and a remarkable
transformation takes place. They go from being one of the best
ballistic ROK bands around to tempering their sound, shaping it
into something well, more shapely and compelling. With the song
structure of early Pere Ubu, Oneida provide a frenetic screech and
smoothed-out cruise of organs, unison speak-shout-singing, guitar
solos. Plus only Oneida do the impossible (and make it work!),
making a smacked dub song that's acoustically damped--i.e. no
echo! How do they do it? This album is so varied, with new paths
offered at every turn, that I had a damn hard time picking just
two trax for you (above). Better than the Strokes, dammit! [RE]

GORODISCH "Thurn & Taxes" (Leaf, UK) CD/LP $11.99/$11.99
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Stephen Cracknell's debut, with nought under his belt but a track
on a comp and an association w/Badly Drawn Boy to his name. And,
though only twenty minutes long (8 tracks), it's a remarkable
vision of folk melodies, new-age pastorals, and modern lilting
beats, all inscribed within an acoustic jazz ensemble structure.
The piano travels and bounds, tingly beats tickle the mix, drums
and bass (that's real drums, stand-up bass) give a beatnik bed to
the mass. Stan Getz and Brinkmann in a coffeehouse? Penguin Cafe
Orchestra with Plaid? Just sort of, and more. It's really a weird
record (that's a very high compliment, btw!) -- earthy and swanky,
very British as if from both the trip-hop and folk scene at the
same time. Damn, good. [RE]
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GESCOM "Key Nell" (Skam, UK) CD EP $7.99
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Gescom fans, your prayers have been answered. The long-gone and
sought-after "Key Nell" EP is back in print, a 4-track CD encased
in bubble wrap. One listen forces you to think about the hundreds
of so-called "IDM" records released since the initial CD pressing
of "Key Nell" on Skam: how those artists either tried too hard or
not enough, mimicked their idols or tried to escape their immense
influence and failed. In other words, the first track on the EP
still has power to stun five years later. How is that Sean Booth
and Rob Brown can create a drum pattern that sounds like Marley
Marl circa '85 on hallucinogens and speed while writing minor-key
symphonies to rival 20th-century composers like Samuel Barber?
Don't tell me you can't hear echoes of  "Adagio for Strings"
on 'Keynell 1', with its flattened, fat snares and handclaps so
sharp they could double as body piercing instruments. This EP so
effectively captures Booth and Brown before they moved into far
more abstract territory, where their already numerous acolytes
would follow. One is tempted to risk an analogy between those US
jazz players whose music had been co-opted by white musicians like
Benny Goodman, musicians who turned their innovation into just
good-time swing music. Those players then moved uptown to create
bop, and as one musician put, "make music the white man couldn't
play". With their latest (and best) album, Booth and Brown
surprised a lot of fans with an album that is dark, menacing, and
lonely. Is that where they find themselves now? One can only
wonder. But the bouncing funk on "Keynell" captures the pair
having a lot of fun. [TH]

BLADDER FLASK "One Day I Was So Sad?" (Sonaria, Poland) CD $13.99
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"?That The Corners Of My Mouth Met & Everybody Thought I Was
Whistling". One of my favorite early '80s compilation albums
was "Sudden Departure" on the Recloose label. Bladder Flask (one
Richard Rupenus a.k.a. Funeral Danceparty) was featured on a few
of the very best tracks, as were Bourbonese Qualk and EG Oblique
Graph, who would later change names to Muslimgauze. I already love
this album to pieces! Released in 1981 in a numbered edition of
500 on the impossibly obscure Orgel Fesper Music (!) label, "One
Day?" is comprised of two 25-minute side-long tracks of extended
Dadaist reverie, a sublime mixage of musique concrete and
instrumental collage. Bladder Flask and their ilk were spiritual
forefathers to Oval and today's "Clicks & Cuts" generation,
creating a slapdash industrial experimental music that exploited
the idiosyncrasies of analogue tape assemblage and editing.
Incredibly, this sounds as fresh and startling today as it must
have sounded 20 years ago. Like most folks, I missed this one the
first time around, so this reissue really makes my day. Highest
recommendation! [JG]

FAINT "Danse Macabre" (Saddle Creek) CD/LP $12.99/$9.99
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Ultravox, back when John Foxx was at the helm, scratched away a
place for themselves between glam rock and punk. By utilizing
synthesizers, they expanded electro-pop beyond what Kraftwerk had
developed, giving birth to what would be known as the New Romantic
movement. Soft Cell, Human League, OMD, Spandau Ballet, and Duran
Duran (among others) followed (in retrospect, the tour for "Seven
& The Ragged Tiger", as chronicled on 'Arena', effectively served
as a death knell to the movement). It is these particular artists
that The Faint most directly owe a debt to, although their lyrics,
lights, and smoke-machine have more in common with The Cure.
Songs of suicide, murder, death, and betrayal have them riding a
wave much darker than their predecessors. Whether trying to
create something new from old or simply picking up where others
have left off, The Faint are scratching away their own place and
can rest assured that there is a growing legion of emo-kids wearing
Cure buttons out there waiting for more. Having jettisoned the more
indie-rock elements of their prior albums, "Danse Macabre" is
electro-pop of the highest order. Simply put, this is something
fun to dance to... buy it, and enjoy! [AG]
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PIPES YOU SEE, PIPES YOU DON'T "Individualized Shirts" (Cloud) CD  $11.99
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The best song on "Black Foliage", the second album from The Olivia
Tremor Control, is arguably 'I Have Been Floated', which happens
to be the only pop song on either of their first two albums penned
by pianist Peter Erchick. Always a crowd favorite, it made me
wonder what other gems Erchick had up his sleeve. With the release
of Pipes You See, Pipes You Don't, it's apparent that Erchick's
has been honing his McCartney-esque songwriting for a long time,
saving up his immense talent for the inevitable offshoot project.
Essentially a solo album, Erchick is assisted on some songs by
friends from The Olivia Tremor Control and Neutral Milk Hotel,
though it never goes too far into a densely over-produced affair.
While the not-surprising Beatles hooks are apparent throughout,
the production at times teeters away from the late '60s, into
something more akin to the fuzzed-out sounds of Eno's "Another
Green World". Most of Erchicks songs are written on piano (or so
it seems): this classy pop writing style is paired perfectly with
an odd assortment of humorous arrangements, the pop sound
strangely supplemented by the unexpected. With two
fantastic "debuts", Pipes You See, Pipes You Dont and Circulatory
System (last newsletter) are making it perfectly apparent that
life will be quite good after the The Olivia Tremor Control. [PW]

F.S. BLUMM "Mondkuchen" (Morr, Germany) CD $14.99
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Frank Blumm's music, alone and with the duo Sack & Blumm, has a
tendency towards toybox rhythms and naif instrumental sounds--
melodicas, xylophones, kalimba all figure strongly. And it took
until hearing this record that I realized he's not drawing his
inspiration from the music of 'childhood' in using these sounds--
he's drawing lines back, in a very subtle way, to the raw musical
history of his native Germany, from which sophisticated automatic
music sprung during the 19th century (and complex clockmaking
began centuries before). The elaborate cuckoo and civic clocks,
and watchmakers' windups: birds, mechanical orchestras and doll-
like robots that played music--what could be a more appropriate
inspiration to someone making computer music? Blumm's music
here tempers the automatic with some humane brilliant irregularities:
strums on a guitar (and the way fingernails scratch the strings),
out-of-tune air organs, flaws highlighted in irregular structures,
mechanical skitters and hums but a reflection of noises the body
can make with sputtering lips, thrumming fingers. Quite lovely.

FRIDGE "Happiness" (Temporary Residence) CD $12.99
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Fridge's fifth album is a journey across the crystalline
electronic tundra and onto the indie-rock plains. Still clear and
simple, Sam Jeffers, Adem Ilham and Kieran Hebden loop around cut
up drum machines, bells and tones, set off by icy clicks and
samples. But as Hebden has been experimenting with warmer tones
and exotic instrumention with his other project, Four Tet, it
seems the organic sounds seeped and melted most of the
characteristically cold electronics of Fridge. Trombones,
melodicas, glockenspiels, guitar, live drums and children's voices
parade around the atmospherics making for a less minimal, droney
feel and a more interesting collage. Think Takemura meets Pluxus,
as filtered through post rock, especially on the acoustic guitar-
driven 'Harmonics.' This album is not for the serious IDM-er -- for
example, a cheesy, slowed-down drifting casio beat sequence (I
think it's in waltz time) carries 'Long Singing.' Most shreds of
the old Fridge are sandwiched in between the beginning and end of
this album, or conveniently marked by song titles. So keep 'Drums
Bass Sonics and Edit,' as well as 'Sample and Clicks' on repeat to
get your bone-chilling fix.  Otherwise, bask in the warmth, the
summer's not that far gone. [LG]

MOGWAI/BARDO POND "Split Tour EP" (Matador) 10" EP $9.99
Two unreleased tracks from both Mogwai and Bardo Pond are offered
on this split 10", previously available only at their Spring 2001
shows. Unlike a lot of divided efforts, this split works well as a
whole, with Mogwai acting as the atmospheric calm before the
storm. Their instrumental side has a warm, languid feel to it that
never really blossoms into something more dynamic; this is
definitely one of Mogwai's gentler moments. Labelmates Bardo Pond
dish out the sonic outburst here, slowly creeping into that bluesy
sludge they do so well. Isobel's vocals are compelling as always,
shifting from airy to strangled and proving she can easily cut
through all the fuzz when she needs to. An essential teaser for
fans of either band. [KS]

[V/A] "Mush Filmstrip" (Shadow) CD $15.99
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A CD compiled from assorted Mush records 12" (most of which were
super limited and hard-to-get) and a few full-lengths (like Aesop
Rock, cLouddead, etc.--as well as ones that aren't out yet). Like
a filmstrip, it consists of discrete points that tell a story,
even if the story is but the history of the Mush label. Not
everything here is hip-hop--a lot of the projects on Mush are
downtempo or 'abstract beat' projects--mostly atmospheric stuff
that's off-course from the rest of the world in the same way that
their rap projects stray from the path. But the best stuff on here
is the hip-hop, like Odd Nosdam's bizarre opera-sampling number
that will appear on his forthcoming album (due for over a year!
where the hell is it? I want it now!) and the track from Boom Bip
and Doseone (revealing them, quite obviously, to be the Pere Ubu
of hip-hop). [RE]

ONENESS OF JUJU "African Rhythms 1970-1982" (Strut, UK) CD $17.99
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The fourth Oneness of Juju CD reissue to surface (that I know of),
and this one is a broad overview, 2 CDs worth, a selected history
of Plunky, Juju, and Oneness of Juju. Over the span of their
history (from S.F. to NYC, on the labels Black Fire (a label co-
founded by Plunky Branch, head of Juju) and Strata-East. Theirs
was jazz music that stood on soul and African rhythms and took
heavy steps into funk. With an ear to the funkiest, poppiest, or
spaciest tracks of this twelve-year segment of the Juju career,
Strut records put together what they thought best represented the
band's diversity. Rather than laying it down earthy, Oneness of
Juju's method was flights of soaring soul, light breathy jazz
arrangements whose drums and bass deflected their sound back up
into the atmosphere. With strong political/revolutionary/personal
messages, rendered strong and supple from singer Lady Eka-Ete
Jackie Lewis. Imagine a meeting of Curtis Mayfield and Sun Ra on a
cloud. By the second CD, the group settles into an excellent, more
straight-jazz vibe w/African percussion. CD includes a thorough
biography, and tons of rare singles, unreleased demos, etc. [RE]

CHRIS LEE "Plays & Sings Torch'd Songs, Charivari Hymns & Oriki Blue-Marches" (Smells Like) CD $12.99
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For his second album, the sweet-voiced Mr. Lee takes a slight
turn; while his debut album had the foundation of soul, this one
filters that through an implied framework of roots, blues and
folksong. The arrangements favor trumpets (spectacularly on 'In
Yellow Moonlight'), simple guitars, acoustic bass. Though not
alike at all in sound, Lee has an affinity with the work of Chan
Marshall (Cat Power), in that both are envisioning their own forms
of North American folk musics, including the pop landscape of
the '60s and '70s in that vision (Lee covers Neil Young's 'On the
Beach' to make this explicit). His snaky, soulful voice wouldn't
sound out of place in background music on a WB TV drama, but his
music lands ultimately closer to the work of Will Oldham. [RE]

MUSLIMGAUZE "Kashmiri Queens" (Staalplaat, Netherlands) CD $17.99
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Opus 127 in the canon and none too soon, I must say, as the
spacing between this release and the last (two, maybe three
months) was leading me to worry about Bryn Jones' diminishing
productivity. "Kashmiri Queens" is the latest in Staalplaat's
numbered, 1000 copy, limited edition series in yet another
spectacular package. An etched jewel case is inlaid with multi-
colored iridescent foil containing the titles over an evocative
cinemascopic image depicting a throng of anonymous Arabic
women at prayer. Musically, this latest sixty-minute work finds
Jones eschewing the frenetic breakbeat pace of some of his
latter-day releases in favor of a return to a more elemental
ambience featuring elegant drones (accordion and harmonium)
augmented by hand-percussion, reeds, and occasional vocal
samples swirling into hypnotic minimalism. Indeed, four of these
tracks are rumored to have been drawn from 1995's "Nadir Of
Purdah", a most sought after and long out-of-print 12". An
outstanding release for Muslimgauze aficionado or novice alike.

AIRPORT 5 "Tower in the Fountain of Sparks" (Friendly Captain) CD $13.99
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The first collaboration between Robert Pollard and Tobin Sprout in
a number of years, and the material is more calm and thoughtful.
Not the usual big-rock Guided by Voices setting: instead picture
an empty, dirty rock club on a weeknight, with the two friends
playing to the handful of drunks at the bar. All instrumentation
was recorded by Sprout, and Pollard provided lyrics and vocals.
Traces of organ and backwards guitar give a more spaced-out sound
to some of the songs, but most of the album is slower, more
reserved than previous efforts. Airport 5 won't please everyone,
but clearly Pollard and Sprout were out to please each other with
this one, and fans will certainly appreciate this more delicate
offering. [CK]

AROVANE/PHONEM "Aer (Valid)" (Vertical Form, UK) CD/LP  $16.99/$16.99
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Part Arovane, part Phonem, and a four tracks done as a
collaboration. The slick synthy sound of someone like Kitaro or
Jean Michel Jarre, with a fricasee of twitches and static stabs
poured in (staggered, pointillist) -- smooth, but very prickly at
the same time, like milkweed, or getting the chills. Phonem owes a
bit of a debt to Aphex Twin (and a little, maybe, to Ussachevsky)
on his tracks--there's a placid energy that's similar -- Arovane's
work is more forcibly active in comparison, it gets little hooks
into you and drags you along with it. [RE]
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UP BUSTLE & OUT "Master Sessions 2" (NinjaTune, Canada) CD/LP  $14.99/$15.99
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The fifth album from Up, Bustle and Out is also part two of
their 'Rebel Radio' Project, which involves 75-year-old Cuban
flautist and composer Richard Egues (formerly of Orquestra Aragon)
and his Orquestra.  With 19 musicians participating, the results
(of which this is volume 2) are Cuban-flavored nubeat acid jazz,
both stark and fuzzy, clear in its structure but dusty 'round the
edges for an antique feel to some of the sound, like they'd
stained the contemporary recordings with tea and tobacco (and
dub). This is a rare record in that it a book was made in
conjunction with its recording--Guardian writer Jonathan Glancey
detailed the project (and musings on 'post-colonial space' in
modern Cuba) in 'The Rebel Radio Diary'. (Film footage accompanies
this disc, and, unlike #1 doesn't have any radio footage [which I
found disruptive anyway, probably the point]). An unusual project
that it's nice to have more of--in fact, better than Volume 1. [RE]
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PRESTON SCHOOL OF INDUSTRY "All This Sounds Gas" (Matador) CD/LP $13.99/$15.99
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Spiral Stairs' project (he formerly of Pavement). You know how
Pavement, for the first few records at least, were obviously
modeling their work on the Fall, specifically the Fall of the
early '80s? Well, Preston School of Industry jumps forward a few
years for some models--mid-'80s rock--the plungy rock of New
Zealand of that period (pre-jangly, pre-shimmery) and even a
little Blue Aeroplanes and perhaps even early Nothing Painted
Blue. And 'Doping for Gold', smack dab in the middle of the
record, is, I swear, a conflation of the sound of The Clean and
J.C. Mellencamp. Stairs' songs, like burrs, work their way in (I
found myself thinking of choruses when it was over, unawares of
their power through the actual listening experience). What throws
the songs 15 years into the future is, believe it or not, the
arrangements, where he'll add one instrument or another to the
bass/guitar/drums rock sound -- violin on one, trumpet another.
While the sound is both mild-mannered and propulsive, his lyrics
walk that Pavement line between evocative and purely cryptic. [RE]
CD //perl-bin/OM/CD_Add_To_Cart.cgi?sku=74486105202&refer_url=email
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PULLMAN "Viewfinder" (Thrill Jockey) CD/LP $13.99/$13.99
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Wow! I've heard this referred to as 'Tortoise doing John Fahey' or
simply 'Acoustic Tortoise', but really what Chris Brokaw, Ken
Brown, Tim Barnes, Doug McCombs and Curtis Harvey have put
together here in "Viewfinder" is a whole set of new songs (sans
vocals) as if for James Taylor! It's got that classic early '70s
lite-rock/folk sound, just arranged into innocuous and pleasant
selections with one foot in roots music (more blues than anything
else) -- except that that foot is still wearing a lovely, polished
paddock boot and therefore doesn't really pick up any mud from the
experience. This, like Fahey's music, is yet another to approach
(deconstruction, even) of American music, from a new perspective.
(BTW, this will probably earn them a guest spot on 'Prairie Home
Companion'.) [RE]
CD //perl-bin/OM/CD_Add_To_Cart.cgi?sku=79037700902&refer_url=email
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[V/A] "Turntables By The Bay" (Hip Hop Slam) CD $13.99
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This CD includes selected tracks from the three vinyl-only LPs in
the "Turntables by the Bay" series, plus a few new nuggets, one,
slightly flawed conceptual piece that's a collage from all three,
and a few tracks from the Invisibl Skratch Piklz "Shiggar Fraggar"
CDs. Covering 1996-2001, it's ironic that the best tracks here are
from this past year! (a couple above). There's a lot of self-
referencing, and a lot of the turntablism makes it clear that the
musicians haven't quite jumped to the next level, at least studio-
wise (and what am I complaining about? Most of these tracks were
caught live and that's quite impressive enough!). This is still a
great resource for the turntablist world, with pictures of lots of
albums, a resource guide to turntablism Web sites, and a
summarizing bio for each artist included. Thorough it is, and
includes Peanut Butter Wolf, Eddie Def, the Piklz, Live Human, and
a few lesser-known workers of the decks -- the excellent DJ Stoic,
DJ Relm, DJ Marz, and more. 20 tracks, 66 minutes. [RE]

[V/A] "Select Cuts from Blood and Fire Chapter Two" (Select Cuts, UK) CD $14.99
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Someone thought "hey, lets do remixes of all that great shit on
Blood and Fire Records--and then lets do another one", and this
was born. I'm not sure it needed to exist, but it's a lot more
useful as dancefloor/DJ mixing fodder than improvements on the
glorious dub originals. Of course, how could classics by Yabby
You, Horace Andy, King Tubby, Glen Brown, I Roy, etc. be improved?
Mixers chipping in talents: Smith and Mighty, Avatars of Dub,
Stereo MCs, many more. Rocking bouncing echoes welded to big
beats. [RE]

Just In:

NEUTRAL MILK HOTEL "Everything Is" (Orange Twin) CD EP $8.99
Still absolutely Neutral Milk Hotel's finest recorded moment
(yet), now on CD with one extra song.

TRUBY TRIO "DJ Kicks" (Studio K7) CD/LP $16.99/$18.99
Newest installment in the "DJ Kicks" series; full review
next week.
CD //perl-bin/OM/CD_Add_To_Cart.cgi?sku=73000371042&refer_url=email
LP //perl-bin/OM/CD_Add_To_Cart.cgi?sku=73000371041&refer_url=email

MARGO GURYAN "25 Demos" (Oglio) CD $15.99
Rare unreleased recordings and also different versions of
songs than released on Guryan's lovely "Take A Picture"


FUGU "s/t" (Minty Fresh) CD $14.99
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Fugu (Frenchman Mehdi Zannad) lays out his first real (and
completely swoon-worthy) album. It reveals a major Brian Wilson
fixation, with a French backbone: intricate, sweet pop sung in
three languages where melodies shine via horn, harpsichord and
strings. His 25-piece orchestra gives his work a mechanical, yet
classical edge, the songs floating through are immensely
pleasureable and positively inescapable. Guest appearances
from Stereolab members just add to the cake. [RE]

[V/A] "Downtown 81 Soundtrack" (Virgin, France) CD $11.99
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NYC in 1981 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. The movie "Downtown 81" follows artist
Jean-Michel Basquiat around the city and into clubs in a
(somewhat) invented scenario--captured not only 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]

This week's contributors: Tom Capodanno [TC], David Day [DD],
Robin Edgerton [RE], Lisa Garrett [LG], Jeff Gibson [JG], Andrew
Giles [AG], Gerald Hammill [GH], Tim Haslett [TH], Casey Keenan
[CK], Katie Serva [KS], Phil Waldorf [PW].

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