August 11 , 2005  



Other Music has recently acquired a couple of rather large collections of second-hand CDs, and to accommodate this influx of inventory, we'll be temporarily expanding our used CD section. This weekend (Friday, August 12 through Monday, August 15), we will add two more racks of choice titles from these collections. Customers will also see the return of our discount bin, featuring hundreds of cheap CDs priced at $2.99 and less.





The Juan MacLean
Orange Juice
Broadcast (7" single)
Sons & Daughters
Jana Hunter / Devendra Banhart
Gogol Bordello
Tocotronic (CD single)
Texas Funk (Various Artists)



Little Movies, Big Noises (DVD)

Quasimoto (Reissue)

AUG Sun 7 Mon 8 Tues 9 Wed 10 Thurs 11 Fri 12 Sat 13


Other Music is giving away tickets for two Grime Nights at the Knitting Factory. This Friday, the ROLL DEEP CREW (featuring WILEY) will take over the main performance space, and Saturday will be a double-header with DIPLO and KANO. We've got two pairs to offer for each night, so we'll be picking four winners total. To enter to win a pair for the ROLL DEEP CREW, send an e-mail to, and for DIPLO and KANO, e-mail The winners will be notified by 1:00 P.M., on Friday, August 12th. Leave a daytime phone number where you can be reached.

featuring Wiley, DJ A-Trak and DJ Ayresthis

w/ Catchdubs and DJ Cameo of BBC1xtra


AUG Sun 7 Mon 8 Tues 9 Wed 10 Thurs 11 Fri 12 Sat 13


This Friday, Austin's VOXTROT returns to NYC bringing their classic Anglo pop sound (think the Smiths and Belle & Sebastian mixed with the Left Banke) to Rothko. We're giving away two pairs of tickets to this special night. E-mail to enter to win a pair. The winners will be notified by 1:00 P.M., on Friday, August 12th. Leave a daytime phone number where you can be reached.

w/ Domino, Au Revoir Simone and Aero Wave

ROTHKO: 116 Suffolk Street, NYC


AUG Sun 14 Mon 15 Tues 16 Wed 17 Thurs 18 Fri 19 Sat 20
AUG Sun 21 Mon 22 Tues 23 Wed 24 Thurs 25 Fri 26 Sat 27


Monday, August 15 @ 8:00 P.M.

Monday, August 22 @ 8:00 P.M. (Record release party and in-store performance)

15 East 4th Street NYC
Free Admission/Limited Capacity







Less Than Human

"Give Me Every Little Thing"
"Love Is in the Air"

Some 30 years after Kraftwerk proclaimed "we are the robots," electronic dance music is embracing its flesh and blood side. Earlier this year, the cyber-masked disco-bots Daft Punk admitted that they were "human after all;" their not-so-perfect album certainly gave credence to the claim. By naming his debut album Less Than Human, I don't know if Juan MacLean is taking a piss on the famous French android duo, after all, his DFA boss James Murphy (LCD Soundsystem) sure does love them. But underneath all the Ralf and Florian bleeps and robo-styling, it's apparent that this mere mortal has accepted the fact that human life in this mechanized 21st century can be pretty damn soulless. So what does he do? Goes and creates an album that's not only got some of this year's most slammin' electro-funk tracks, but then he adds a healthy dose of human melancholy.

MacLean, who is a former member of Six Finger Satellite, is no stranger to burning out; the drug demons in his past are no secret. This might be why Less Than Human isn't exclusively the coke-tastic house-funk that we've come to expect from his past 12" singles--he knows that there's a price to pay in the end. During "In the Afternoon," Nancy Whang espouses a little disco philosophy advising the listener to "wait until its dark before you step into the light" over a creeping, lo-fi Blade Runner atmosphere. In "My Time Is Running Out," the vocoder voice (usually a Pavlovian disco call to the dance floor) weakly quivers, while repeating the song's title amidst somber Kraftwerk-style production. But ultimately, MacLean doesn't let the come-down get in the way of another human emotion, hedonistic fun. Tracks like the bass-heavy funk of "Give Me Every Little Thing" and the electrofied disco stomper "Tito's Way" are exactly the kind of modern, leftfield dance music that put the DFA crew on the map. Whang's icy vocals in the 14-minute closer, "Dance With Me" are downright sultry and hypnotizing, singing over floating piano passages, sparkling synthesizer accents, and a sexy robot-rhythm pulse. Ah, computer love indeed. [GH]






The Glasgow School

"Blue Boy"
"Satellite City"

The story of Postcard Records is one that is yet to be written. Born in the wake of punk's demise, yet retaining that era's DIY ideals, enthusiastic Glaswegian maverick Alan Horne formed the label in 1980. Fuelled with a love of the Velvet Underground, Vic Godard and his Subway Sect, Chic disco, and soul, the dozen or so records that Postcard released are essential. One album and four singles by Josef K, a single each by Aztec Camera and the Go-Betweens, and, maybe most importantly, four seminal singles by Orange Juice.

The early Orange Juice 45s ("Falling and Laughing", "Blue Boy", "Simply Thrilled Honey", and "Poor Old Soul", all featured on The Glasgow School) are a beautiful mess. Poppy yet raw and shambling, like a group of punks armed with Al Green and Maxine Brown records, that had grown sick of watching Sid and Johnny making fools of themselves on television. Punks that wore schoolboy uniforms and had stolen Roger McGuinn's haircut. Perhaps as a result of increased musical competence, Orange Juice moved away from the androgynous, stumbling punk, and into perfect pop territory, as vocalist and front icon Edwyn Collins' voice seemed to drop a tiny bit for every new song they recorded.

Also included on The Glasgow School is Ostrich Churchyard, an album which was intended as the band's debut LP on Postcard. But as Orange Juice sought a proper recording deal and Postcard started losing steam (and fizzled out in 1982), the album was scrapped and never saw the light of day (not counting a now scarce reissue in the early-'90s by a briefly resurrected Postcard). The tracklisting is very similar to that of You Can't Hide Your Love Forever, OJ's eventual major label full-length, but the recordings are quite different. These versions are rougher and without a brass section, and personally I prefer them over the smoother sounding Polydor takes. Possibly the best album that never was. Additionally, The Glasgow School includes a few unreleased tracks and comes in a luxurious flipbook style package, complete with extensive liner notes by original Orange Juice drummer Steven Daly.

All in all, an essential purchase for anyone interested in the history of pop music. As the saying goes, you gotta hear Orange Juice, to dig Jesus & Mary Chain, the Smiths, and Franz Ferdinand! [AK]





7" single

"America's Boy" / "Tender Buttons"

"America's Boy"

The upcoming Broadcast album is really good. But this single is a teaser and as fine as it is, it contains not nearly the best songs on the album. "America's Boy" and "Tender Buttons" both have buzzing vintage synths that show a slight, surprisingly tasteful '80s influence(!), but don't be afraid; it seems that Broadcast are incapable of treading new ground without fully digesting it. There's a slight coldness to the sounds, even in Trish Keenan's vocal delivery, that is then warmed by the flow of the melodies. It's mostly from the use of similar equipment, but a noticeable Broadcast meets Magnetic Field's Charm of the Highway Strip feel is definitely in there, yet not in a derivative way at all. There's a lot more I want to say, but I'll save it for the album review. You just wait. (These are the last remaining copies of this limited edition single. It's already out-of-print, so pick this up now before we sell out.) [SM]







The Repulsion Box

"Taste the Last Girl"

I've got to admit, I've spent most of my recreational time this summer listening to reissues of older records, and generally if it's been a new album it's probably an electronic release. But then there's Glasgow's Sons and Daughters. The first time I heard these guys (and girls), was last year when they were warming the stage for Franz Ferdinand at a very packed and overheated show at Volume. Normally, I would have skipped out on the opening act and headed to the bar for a cooling drink, but Sons and Daughters held my attention till the end with a set of frantic rock 'n' roll rave-ups. Formed in 2001 by guitarist Adele Bethel and drummer David Gow (who both put in some time as part of Arab Strap's touring band), this four-piece's new album, The Repulsion Box, was produced by Victor Van Vugt (Nick Cave/PJ Harvey) and, strangely enough, recorded at Conny Plank's Cologne studio--a Krautrock institution where groups like Kraftwerk and Neu! made their records during the '70s.

Fronted by Bethel and guitarist Scott Patterson, the two trade vocals in much the same effect as X's Exene Cervenka and John Doe. Not in the same harmonic dissonance per se, but their call-and-response interaction is as urgent and, often times, just as erotically charged. Of course it helps that their dark, murder ballad inspired musings are supported by a gritty mix of bluesy punk, country and folk. Musically, album opener "Medicine" reminds me of early PJ Harvey, with its hectic pace and tightly wound guitars. One would expect the band to finally let loose at the end, only here, Sons and Daughters show great restraint whipping the song into a controlled frenzy that feels cheap, dirty and leaves you wanting more. And luckily there is. "Dance Me In" is propelled by a chugging steam train rhythm and a frantic guitar, while Bethel's husky voice is reminiscent of Siouxsie Sioux, only with a sultry, dramatic southern inflection. In contrast, Patterson's vocals sometime recalls Lou Reed--during "Rama Lama" his lazy sing-speak tells a dark suicidal tale over the bare accompaniment of a bass, kick drum and some spaghetti western atmosphere. Though Sons and Daughters obviously display a great love for traditional music, they've created a sound that's very much their own. I can't think of any other new rock record that I've enjoyed as much this summer as this one. [GH]





$10.99 LP


Split LP

A vinyl-only release that takes the concept of a split seven-inch, and tacks on another five inches to the platter. On the a-side is Jana Hunter, while the b-side features a full suite of Devendra Banhart material. Although Jana Hunter lives in Brooklyn, her style hints at her past dwelling in the Southwest. Her flowery vocals remind one of a young, whispering Billie Holiday (not unlike Banhart's). The sound has a late-night campfire vibe--lots of joking and laughing, and nonsensical lovely lyrics. There is a subtlety in her presentation, a blending of vocals and drumming that makes it quaintly harmonized. Mr. Banhart presents a pleasant romp on the b-side, as played before an audience. Reworking a few old favorites, some previously unheard gems, and an R. Kelly cover to boot, the recordings present Devendra's departure from the solo man on stage to a much more fleshed-out live experience, as he is able to open the material up with the band in tow. Add the two sides together and you have a perfect folk-lullaby, soothing and familiar as it murmurs on. [AC]







Gypsy Punks
(Side One Dummy)

"Underdog World Strike"
"I Would Never Want to Be Young Again"

The last few years have been kind to gypsy punk underdogs Gogol Bordello and their mustachioed and leering leader Eugene Hutz, as the group's drunken live shows have become must-see theater. Hutz's local DJ nights have become legendary events and he even landed a featured role in the forthcoming major-motion picture Everything Is Illuminated. But it takes more than success and recognition to break these punks' underdog spirit, and although Steve Albini cleaned up the production a bit (the sawing fiddles and pumping accordions still threaten to veer out of control, but now we're confident that we won't lose them in the din), the group was careful not to sacrifice their chutzpah. Hutz's maniacal growl stops just short of self-parody, and then he throws caution to the wind and jumps in full-force, as he screams and chants and howls his silly tales of Gypsies, vodka, revolution, sex and other important underdog work. What else can I say, you will like them or you will not, this is one band that really leaves little room for middle ground. Stop reading and listen. [JM]






Pure Vernunft Darf Niemals Siegen

"Pure Vernunft Darf Niemals Siegen"

"Pure Reason May Never Win," the new single from Ladomat artist Tocotronic, is given a Superpitcher/Wassermann collaborative remix then released on the Kompakt Pop label. The original version has a British D.I.Y. pop feel, with a one-note guitar melody and a "steins filled with beer swaying in the pub" cadence that grows into an uplifting pop song. The remix gives it a low rumbling groove and adds some echoing synth for the dancefloor without cutting all the vocals out. An instrumental version of the remix is included for all non-German speaking Kompakt fans. [SM]







Texas Funk: Black Gold from the Lone Star State
(Now Again/Jazzman)

"I Turn You On" Latin Breed
"Clean Up Man" Eddie Finley

Another Jazzman volume of regional vintage funk from the late-'60s and early-'70s. This region of Texas had a very healthy local scene during this era, and crate diggers such as Josh Davis (DJ Shadow), Egon, Dante Carfagna and others have been collecting these records to make sure that the vibrant music that took place during that time is documented and recognized. This is an excellent continuation of this work. I guess what separates this scene from the Detroit and west coast scenes is that it seemed a lot more self-contained and a bit rawer and more ferocious; this is the same state that produced 13th Floor Elevators, Red Crayola and Geto Boys after all. Highlights include the Kashmere High School Stage Band's furious rendition of "Super Bad," the cantina-esque Mexican funk of Latin Breed's "I Turn You On" and the Brother Seven's version of "Evil Ways." Another excellent comp for those who can't get enough of that funky stuff. [DH]






Love Bites

"Love So Strong"

Birthed from a popular, Bangkok-based electro party, Futon are back with Love Bites, their second full-length. If you need a little refreshing, this pansexual, poly-continental five-piece (featuring Thai, Japanese and British members--including the recent addition of former Suede drummer Simon Gilbert) had a couple of underground club hits last year with "Gay Boy" and a remake of the Stooges' "I Wanna Be Your Dog," and are pop stars in Thailand. Filled with buzzing synthesizers, stomping glam-disco beats, and plenty of attitude, their debut album Nevermind the Botox was perfect for NYC's body-taped black eyeliner and pointy boot sect, but by the time it reached Brooklyn CD-players electroclash was in its waning days. So I was curious as to what this band would do as a follow-up; after all, Thailand is a long ways from New York's always-changing fashion and music scenes. But Love Bites isn't at all what I was expecting, and Futon have, dare I say, matured with their sophomore effort.

The band seems to have dropped some of their ironic edge; and many of the dozen or so tracks contain a more accessible, song-oriented influence of '80s electronic pop. And I mean this in the best way possible, detecting traces of Alphaville, Icehouse, Ultravox and even Duran Duran in many of these cuts. Gene Futon's voice often recalls the croon of both Bryan Ferry and Simon LeBon. That's not to insinuate that Futon have gone all soft on us though. The latter half of the record has a fair share of electro-garage stompers, ("Dead Husband Collection," "Token Hetero") plus some bonus remixes--the Pramface remix of "Rich Baby" could be 2005's answer to Fischerspooner's "Emerge." All in all, a really enjoyable album, I won't be surprised if they find some success on these shores with this one. (In future weeks we'll be featuring other new Thai artists on our store shelves and in upcoming Other Music Updates.) [GH]







Definitive Works
(Very Friendly)

"War Booty"

I got my first exposure to Mutamassik when she was a member of Village Voice music writer Greg Tate's free-flowing, cross-genre improv collective Burnt Sugar. As the DJ, her sets featured an explosive concoction of Arabic and Egyptian music, with hip-hop, dancehall and jungle seamlessly blended together. And in the process she blew my mind. So now, six years later, she has moved to Italy (via Egypt and New York) and dropped her debut album, a collection of singles and remixes from 1996 to the present. It definitely retains the spirit of her DJ sets, which is to say, a potent mix of Sa'aidi hardcore and Afro-Oriental roots music. From the opening tracks, you know this is going to be a brutal affair. On "M28" (Mutamassik's brilliant remix for Arto Lindsay), a huge kettle drum break gets injected with stabs of classical Arabic strings. Then, as if the bass bins weren't rattling enough, rapid-fire jungle breakdowns and piercing EFX are added to the barrage of digital pan-Afro-Arabic-punk. For added unsettlement, the occasional sample of Lindsay's gentle crooning is dropped into the mix. This is quickly followed by an interlude of rolling, trance drumming and echoed vocals that swell only to recede under the surface. Those familiar with her split-mix CD with DJ/Rupture probably have an idea what this all about, but for those who are uninitiated, be forewarned. This is not for the faint of heart! [GA]







Little Movies, Big Noises
(Definitive Jux)

Hey kids, just in time for back (pack) to school comes a collection of videos and music from Definitive Jux. Little Movies, Big Noises brings all the names you know and love (El-P, Aesop Rock, RJD2, Mr. Lif, Murs, and C-Rayz Walz) to the little screen. Extras include live footage from Aesop, Hangar 18, Perceptionists, and more, plus a separate disc containing multi-track sessions of four songs (El-P, Lif, RJ, and Cage) that can be loaded into your computer (if you have a PC?!?!) and manipulated and tailored to your own liking. Ah... something for the aspiring remixer in all of us. [DG]







The Difference Between Houses and Homes
(Saddle Creek)

"A Disruption in the Normal Swing of Things"

This latest set from Cursive has been brewing for some time, a six-year spanning retrospective if you will. The Difference Between Houses and Homes, subtitled Lost Songs and Loose Ends 1995-2001, is definitely aimed at the completists. The Ugly Organ it is not. In other words, don't expect to hear the same multi-layered orchestrations and big production that graced their 2003 breakthrough; most of the tracks on this collection are raw, punkish and pre-MTV emo. These 12 songs were mostly culled from three early 7" releases and peppered with a couple of unreleased tracks, and are more or less in the style of their first album, The Storms of Early Summer: The Semantics of Song. That said, these recordings show that even during their first few years of existence, Tim Kasher and company were masters of arrangement, exerting great control of dynamics with emotional crescendos and interesting fractured guitar work. I'm sure that if he had grown a 'fro, Kasher's raspy wail could have earned him a vocalist position in At the Drive-In. While the production is mid-fi at best, The Difference Between Houses and Homes is still a strong odds and sods collection, and fans who missed out on these long out-of-print singles will finally have a chance to hear them. The CD is accompanied by a 24-page story written by Kasher, that charmingly reads like Clement Clarke Moore's T'was the Night Before Christmas, with cartoon illustrations by Yuriko Yoshino. [GH]








The Unseen
(Stones Throw)

"Good Morning Sunshine"
"Astro Black Instru."

Stones Throw has just rereleased Quasimoto's debut album, packaged as a double CD set. The bonus disc contains the long out-of-print The Unseen Instrumentals, which are all Madlib productions. Here's the original review from our update five years ago, when the record was first released:

Quasimoto is the imaginary friend of the Bay Area's Madlib of the Lootpack crew, who digs every day deep into the grooves of records by David Axelrod, Stanley Cowell, the Art Ensemble, or on the Strata-East label, searching for beats. On The Unseen, Quas is given a voice--a sped-up, helium-tainted version of Madlib's own--and a set of fused heavy chunks of rare soul and jazz breaks, and black nationalist sound bites (courtesy Mario Van Peebles, Last Poets, etc.). Q and M hold engrossing, seamless hip-hop dialogues about smoking weed, record shopping, and getting harassed by cops, all next to an amazing aural backdrop that recalls DJ Shadow at his most brilliant, DJ Premier at his most experimental, and Slick Rick at his goofiest. But on "Good Morning Sunshine," the hook is "I ain't the cat y'all saw yesterday/At least tomorrow I won't be anyway." One wonders if Quasimoto visited Ralph Ellison 50 years ago--or Prince Paul 15 years ago--in order to help other introverted young black men find their creative voice. [DH]




  All of this week's new arrivals.

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[GA] Geoff Albores
[AC] Amanda Colbenson
[DG] Daniel Givens
[GH] Gerald Hammill
[DH] Duane Harriott
[AK] Andreas Knutsen
[JM] Josh Madell
[SM] Scott Mou

- all of us at Other Music

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