Other Music New Release Update
July 17, 2002

In This Week's Update:

Flaming Lips
Magic Carpathians
The Lone Pigeon
As We Travel (Harmless comp.)
Gold Chains
Rapture (Reissue)
Kenny Dope/Disco Heat (Various Artists)
Cath Carroll (Reissue)


FLAMING LIPS "Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots" (Warner Bros.) CD $13.99
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It's tough to follow up a masterpiece. Like their last record (which
was recorded simultaneously with their unique four-disc opus
"Zaireeka"), "Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots" was not the only
project the Flaming Lips had in mind while making their regular trips
to long-time collaborator Dave Fridmann's upstate recording studio.
While they were building the tracks you'll hear on the new full-length,
they were also putting together two soundtracks: one for the for the
fishing documentary "Okie Noodling" (never released commercially,
the disc includes three tracks of the Lips' unique take on country
music), and another for their forthcoming feature film "Christmas On
Mars," which reportedly finds the band delving further in the electronic
direction than ever before. As you might expect, the sounds of
"Yoshimi" fall somewhere between these two extremes. There are more
keyboards and electronic sounds here than there were on "The Soft
Bulletin," and fewer electric guitars. There are, however, more acoustic
guitars than you've heard on any previous Lips album. If "The Soft
Bulletin" was an orchestral pop record, then you might describe this one
as space folk. The first couple of songs comprise a sort of mini rock opera
about a future world where professional robot fighters battle for spectators;
thematically, it's "A.I." meets "Gladiator." Like the rest of their recent
albums, "Yoshimi" is huge on production, huge on melody, huge on
creativity, and heads above virtually every other major-label release. It's
absolutely essential for anyone who's enjoyed the Flaming Lips in the past
and a great introduction for anyone who isn't familiar with them. This is a
record that I'll be listening to for a long, long time. [RH]

MAGIC CARPATHIANS "Ethnocore 3" (Fly Music) CD $14.99
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I once attended a memorial which featured three women creating
sounds that turned the small schoolroom we were in into a
cathedral, complete with a chorus of weeping banshees and all
without musical accompaniment. (Think the three fates around the
cauldron.) I had actually forgotten about this experience until I
heard this record. It immediately filled me with a sense of both
reverence and mourning; however, it could very well be cries of
joy. I can't decide but they are definitely coming from the deep
inner recess of personal expression. Scott described the first
song as "the lost breakdown from 'White Rabbit'." That makes sense
actually, because it is like wandering on a path in the dark woods.
Your torch light, a murky bass line that takes you past strange
creatures made from cymbals and harmonicas, with strings for legs
and trumpet beaks -- kind of like the Disney Alice in Wonderland
except, (ahem), darker. I played it in the store and immediately our
surroundings did not make sense. People browsing through CDs
seemed way too prosaic for the soundtrack. I urge you, especially
fans of these "electro-acoustic drone" masters to pick it up. [NL]

SUPER_ COLLIDER "Raw Digits" (Rise Robots Rise) CD/LP $15.99/$18.99
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Super_Collider, famous for their melted, murky yet jacked-up funk,
sweaty Prince-like vocals and "underwater watched through a dirty
windshield" production values, made a big impression on us with
their debut album featuring the hit "Darn Cold Way O' Lovin'."
Here with their second album, the dynamic duo of Cristian Vogel
and Jamie Lidell keep it raw and freaky but take the tempo down a
notch to make swampy mutated funk that sits somewhere between
Closer Musik and Aphex Twin's "Windowlicker" with a half drop of
OutKast. Recommended for late night dancing and/or gluing you and
your friends to the couch. Recommended. [SM]
CD //perl-bin/OM/CD_Add_To_Cart.cgi?sku=71875523022&refer_url=email
LP //perl-bin/OM/CD_Add_To_Cart.cgi?sku=71875523021&refer_url=email

THE VINES "Highly Evolved" (Capitol) CD $10.99
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For many young and upstart guitar outfits, the prevalent quandary
is setting up punk/new wave's power/influence with, as I recently
saw an English music paper (who else?) term it, more 'hirsute,'
not to mention vaguely archaic, rock mores. The Vines' method of
negotiating this particular gap potentially speaks to their hailing
from somewhere so tuned-in yet remote like Australia, and then
they're having been shepherded through a full Hollywood rinse as
well. And what, you might ask, is up with that latter part? Well, I
think this has transpired because the resulting record is the type
of thing that could actually be very big. They've clearly hung onto
what must have been early and schizophrenic revelations, from an
American/English/Western Hemisphere standpoint at least.
Resembling Supergrass, and then Fugazi-school emo, and then the
Nirvana formula in the same twenty seconds is absolutely a triumph
of viability over invention and pragmatic dynamite when combined
with a non-retro appearance. It may not be this record that does it
but I'd look out for these dudes. And where's Supergrass anyway?

THE LONE PIGEON "Concubine Rice" (Domino) CD $14.99
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Right when the Beta Band were reaching international acclaim, an
illness forced co-founder Gordon Anderson (aka The Lone Pigeon) to
stay in Scotland while his former bandmates went on to become
globetrotters. At home, Anderson continued to write weird
psychedelic folk songs that were released in limited pressings,
mostly on his brother's small Fence label, and soon created a stir
on BBC radio. While not really resembling anything on the "Champion
Versions" EP, (the first of the 3 EPs which Anderson shares writing
credits), the Lone Pigeon's Stateside introduction will be warmly
welcomed by many fans of the Beta Band's early, more experimental
material. Like his former group, Anderson's songs run a quirky gamut,
from quiet psychedelic folk to toy keyboard funk with abstract bits of
dialogue interspersed. But unlike Beta Band vocalist Stephen Mason's
close-to monotone delivery, the Lone Pigeon chooses a more melodic
route and at times with an almost-vaudeville approach. Imagine Syd Barrett
replacing the John half of the Lennon/McCartney songwriting duo.
"Concubine Rice" is mostly a lo-fi affair, quiet and dreamy one moment and
satirical the next, compelling in the randomness of the track order and
stream-of-conscious lyrics. Lulling, trippy, beautiful. [GH]

KREIDLER "Eve Future" (Wonder) CD/LP $8.99/$8.99
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Minimal post-rock experimentalists Kreidler reveal a new and
interesting facet to their musical personality. "Eve Future" looks
(check the cover art) and sounds like the soundtrack to a
futuristic children's play. Could it be? We can only guess since
no liner notes exist for this one. The music has the same
dramatic soundtrack-y feel as Rachel's but the end result can be
more accurately described as synthesized, minimal, orchestrated
post-rock. Post-chamber-rock? Kreidler's modern streamlined
sound is accented with marching band-esque percussion, trumpet
notes sequenced into rhythm patterns, and various chiming vibe
sounds. Lighthearted in a way that may turn off techno fans of the
"chin-scratching" variety, but the proof is in the pudding, so I hope
you take a listen to this one on our website. [SM]
CD //perl-bin/OM/CD_Add_To_Cart.cgi?sku=71875641552&refer_url=email
LP //perl-bin/OM/CD_Add_To_Cart.cgi?sku=71875641551&refer_url=email

[V.A.] "As We Travel/Make Music Vol. 2" (Harmless) CD/LP $18.99/$24.99
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At first glance, I was ready to dismiss this latest comp. from
Harmless. Shuggie Otis, Isley Brothers, Funkadelic and Terry
Callier… Sure they are all terrific but do I need another funk
compilation and am I not already familiar with these artists? I
was wrong. (Although I believe I've heard "Strawberry Letter 23"
plenty.) There are some serious gems in this collection. The
selections span from the tail end of the '60s to the mid-'70s.
Most of the songs are built around organic instrumentation and
then proceed into their respective soulful or funkful sound. The
meditative title track from Bugsy Maugh (flute jam!!!) stands out
as a highlight, but my favorite is the incredible cover of Neil
Young's "Birds," by funk titans the Meters, which will bring you to
tears -- it's so delicate and stirring. Buy it and enjoy! [NL]
CD //perl-bin/OM/CD_Add_To_Cart.cgi?sku=04799730422&refer_url=email
LP //perl-bin/OM/CD_Add_To_Cart.cgi?sku=501479703042&refer_url=email

GOLD CHAINS "Straight From Your Radio" (Tigerbeat6) CD/LP $8.99/$8.99
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For his second release (and first with a Tigerbeat6 imprint),
Gold Chains has turned up the electro way past 11. "Straight From
Your Radio" is heavy on the bass and full of booty shaking club
bumpers certain to shred thousands of pairs of woofers across this
great land of ours. For his new EP, the San Francisco rapper mixes
a wider range of styles, from techno to punk rock to old-school
Miami bass all the while embracing the age-old adage of sex, drugs
and rock and roll. Guaranteed to make 2 Live Crew blush! Fans of
Peaches and Gonzalez will not be disappointed. [GH]
CD //perl-bin/OM/CD_Add_To_Cart.cgi?sku=75193718572&refer_url=email
LP //perl-bin/OM/CD_Add_To_Cart.cgi?sku=75193718571&refer_url=email

RAPTURE "Mirror" (Gravity) CD $11.99
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Back in print and back in stock... for those of you that are only
familiar with Rapture's current mixture of Gang Of Four-ish disco-
punk, this earlier effort could be something of a surprise. When
this was released back in '99 it immediately became one of my
favorite albums and I am sure some of my co-workers can attest to
the fact that I would recommend it to just about everyone that
would come into the store. It offers an adrenaline charged,
keyboard driven, almost goth mixture of the Cure, PIL, and
Screamers. The first song "Notes..." starts with a siren, a mic
check, then headlong into some brilliant one string guitar riffs;
the dominant phrase is "I am taking notes on the underground".
"Olio" could easily pass for a lost Cure song, Luke's voice sounds
almost identical to Robert Smith... honestly, this song could've been
on "Pornography". The title track is the crowning jewel; an anthemic
guitar part backed by some of Vito's best drumming, he sounds like
Charles Hayward of This Heat. Combine that with my all time favorite
lyric, "Alan Vega, Suicide" -- I am serious, this song is amazing. Also
included is a Kid 606 remix of "Notes..." titled "In Love with the
Underground". Three years have elapsed since its release and I am
sure that Luke and Vito are happy to have put this album in their past.
With their faces on covers of magazines and playing at venues like
Hammerstein Ballroom, they are now on the verge of becoming the
rock stars that they have always wanted to be; but it's this first
album that I keep going back to. I still can't
recommend it enough. If you have ever owned a Cure poster, you've
got to buy this. If you like to wear black in the summertime, you have
to check this out. Even if you're not a fan of what they are doing now,
you should buy a copy. Hell, if you are a Rapture fan, you must buy
this album! [AG]

PIXIES "Pixies" (SpinArt) CD $12.99
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For years, the mythical "Purple Tape" has been traded among Pixies
diehards. Recorded in 1987 at Fort Apache studios with Gary Smith,
the 17-song cassette demo circulated around Boston and finally
across the sea into the stereo of Ivo Watts-Russell (thanks in part to
Throwing Muses who hand delivered the tape.) The head of 4AD was
so enamored that he released eight songs from this session as the
"Come On Pilgrim" EP. Fifteen years later, the remaining nine tracks
have finally seen their official release on this self-titled CD, an exciting
glimpse at the starting point for one of the most revered bands in
recent rock history. Classics like "Here Comes Your Man" are far from
refined while the demo of "Down to the Well" is played with more
abandon than the version that would later appear on "Bossanova."
Songs like "Build High" and "Subbacultcha" wouldn't even make an
official recorded appearance until late in the band's career on their final
LP "Trompe le Monde." Also included is their studio take of "In Heaven"
(a live version appeared on the "Gigantic" single) as well as the never-
before released "Rock a My Soul." Sure, greater things were soon in
store for the band and a year later "SurferRosa" would blow many
people's minds (including mine), but this is where it all began for them,
without producers and recording budgets. This is the band at their
purest. A must for every Pixies fan. [GH]

[V.A.] "Kenny Dope Gonzalez presents: Disco Heat" (BBE/Urban Theory) CD $20.99
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Kenny "Dope" Gonzalez, one half of the legendary house music
production team Masters at Work, has compiled and mixed a
massive three CD collection of freaky underground disco jams.
Disc one is mixed by Kenny and its an excellent selection of
funked-up, rugged and lush floor fillers with sweeping strings, bold
vocal deliveries, and of course, thick basslines. Disc two and
three are unmixed and contain more underground classics from
Dinosaur, Thelma Houston, Harvey Manson, Gary's Gang, First
Choice, among others. Not a bad price at all for three CDs
either! [GA]

AROVANE "Icol Diston" (Din) CD $15.99
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Arovane's music is well received for its ability to meld the drive
of Basic Channel with the edge of early Autechre topped off with a
sense of longing that sets it apart from the "old masters." Though
it may have a bit of that skittering, abstract melodic sense that
has recently fallen out of vogue, the music stays fresh with its
dynamic sound placement, texture and atmosphere. Beats akin to wet
cave drips echo, bump and click through shimmering white
noise. "Icol Diston" is a compilation of previously released 12"
vinyl releases unavailable on CD until now and for fans of SND,
Dettinger, Process, Basic Channel, early Vladislav Delay, etc.

CATH CARROLL "England Made Me" (LTM) CD $15.99
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Finally, the classic solo debut from Cath Carroll is properly
reissued! The Mancunian singer/NME writer (who wrote for the
British music tabloid under the penname of Myrna Minkoff) will
always be associated with Manchester's very fertile '80s period
having been a regular at the Hacienda, a founding member of Gay
Animals and Miaow, and co-editor of the caustic "City Fun"
fanzine. Her record, "England Made Me," is also long rumored to be
the album that led to the demise of the Factory label. (Liner notes
in the reissue discount this gossip attributing its high budget as only
one piece of Factory's "fiscal indiscretions.") The songs, co-written
with Sim Lister, were recorded over the course of two years in
Sheffield, San Paolo, London, and completed in Chicago with Steve
Albini and his former Big Black bandmate (and Carroll's husband)
Santiago Durango. But don't expect Albini's trademark compression
and crunch, "England Made Me" is full of dance beats and flamenco
guitar flourishes. Not at all tied to the 2002's retro-fixation with the early
Factory releases, the mood of Carroll's solo debut is closer in sound
to Everything But the Girl meets "Technique"-era New Order. "Moves
Like You" is an infectious Euro-dance pleaser and includes a lyric that
served as an impetus for Unrest's "Angel I'll Walk You Home." (The
indie pop band's 1993 album "Perfect Teeth" was full of more obvious
Carroll references, from the cover art featuring a photo of the singer
taken by Robert Mapplethorpe to a tribute song named after her.
Unrest's Mark Robinson would later release two singles and Carroll's
second full-length on his TeenBeat label.) "England Made Me" is mainly
dance-oriented pop with light touches of bossa nova and jazz but the
percussive "Train You're On" dips into avant-territory with off-kilter guitar
stabs and a discordant vocal chant. Carroll's solo debut in itself serves
as a refreshing reminder of an era when new digital technology was
steering electronic instrumentation away from cold mechanical tones
and, thanks to MIDI and sampling, now replicating organic sounds and
even feeling. Included in this reissue are re-mixes by Martin Phillips and
John Fryer and a never before released version of "Send Me Over." Fans
of Saint Etienne and Everything But the Girl should absolutely check
out "England Made Me." [GH]

This week's contributors: Geoff Albores [GA], Andy Giles [AG],
Gerald Hammill [GH], Rob Hatch-Miller [RH], Dan Hougland [DHo],
Nicole Lang [NL], and Scott Mou [SM].

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