August 24 , 2005  




Welsh Rare Beat (Various)
Kompakt Total 6 (Various)
The New Pornographers
August Born
Flotation Toy Warning
GRLZ (Various)
Babyshambles (CD Singles)



Tony Conrad
Rogue Wave (CD-EP)
Spoils of War
Ananda Shankar
Black Rebel Motorcycle Club

Xiu Xiu / Devendra Banhart (Split 7")
Interpol (Antics + Bonus CD)

AUG Sun 21 Mon 22 Tues 23 Wed 24 Thurs 25 Fri 26 Sat 27
  Sun 28 Mon 29 Tues 30 Wed 31      

Juan Atkins @ APT on Thursday, August 25th


The Muvment & Urb Magazine presents Pockit Rockit NYC w/ Juan Atkins aka Model 500 (Metroplex, Detroit ­ The Godfather of Techno) & Kimyon (Pockit Rockit NYC). You won't want to miss this night, not to mention hearing the techno legend break in APT's new, slammin' Funktion One soundsystem. Other Music is giving away a pair of tickets! To enter to win, e-mail and leave a daytime phone number where you can be reached. Winner will be notified by 2:00 P.M., Thursday, August 25.

Open Red Bull & Vodka Bar from 9-10PM.
$8 adv tkts @ Other Music / $10 at the door.


J-LIVE @ APT on Tuesday, August 30

Other Music is very excited to be hosting the release party for J-Live's new album, The Hear After (Triple Threat Productions/Penalty Recordings), at APT next Tuesday, August 30. J-Live himself will be rocking the decks, plus special guest DJ sets from Other Music's very own Geoff Albores and Daniel Givens.

Open Boru Vodka Bar from 9-10PM
No Cover

APT: 419 W13th St (9th & Washington)


AUG Sun 21 Mon 22 Tues 23 Wed 24 Thurs 25 Fri 26 Sat 27


This Friday, Other Music is giving away one pair of tickets to this special French Kiss Records showcase at the Bowery Ballroom. The winner will also receive copies of the new CDs from Thunderbirds Are Now! and Rahim. To enter to win, e-mail Leave a daytime phone number where you can be reached. The winner will be notified by 1:00 P.M., on Friday, August 26th.



AUG Sun 21 Mon 22 Tues 23 Wed 24 Thurs 25 Fri 26 Sat 27

Richard Devine

NYC's GLITCH party returns! This Friday, several of IDM's finest producers will take over the main stage of the Knitting Factory. Performing that night will be Richard Devine, Jimmy Edgar, Datach'i, Hearts of Darknesses and Handshake along with DJs G.rizo, Jedi and Alex English. Other Music is giving away two pairs of tickets. To enter to win, e-mail, and please leave a daytime phone number where you can be reached. Winners will be notified by 1:00 P.M., on Friday, August 26.


Tickets available at the Knitting Factory Box Office
$10 Advance/$14 Day of Show







Welsh Rare Beat
(Finders Keepers)

"Breuddwyd" Bran
"Mathonwy" "Huw Jones

From the label that brought you reissues of Jean-Claude Vannier and Yamasuki, as well as the excellent Folk Is Not a Four Letter Word compilation, comes a musical guided tour of Wales in the 1970s. Welsh Rare Beat features 25 folk rock songs released by Sain, a label that defiantly provided a politically charged Welsh-language alternative to the popular music of the time. By far the most well-known artist on the compilation is Meic Stevens, whose Warner Brothers album Outlander was reissued by Rhino Handmade a couple of years ago. He appears as a sideman on a number of cuts, and two of his own songs are on here too. Stevens' "Y Brawd Houdini" is one of the best songs on the CD, with huge acoustic guitars, joyful handclaps, and "la la la"-ing reminiscent of T. Rex's "Hot Love." Another highlight is "Hedfan" by Gillian Elisa, which slowly builds an organ and piano accompaniment behind lovely multi-tracked vocals, before bursting forth with an ebullient instrumental hook dominated by a distorted guitar line that could have been lifted straight from the Spiders from Mars. And the ethereal five-part harmonies of girl group Sidan's "Di Enw" are even more enchanting than they were on the group's song from Folk Is Not a Four Letter Word. The CD's exemplary liner notes include compact but comprehensive biographical information about all of the artists in addition to an informative essay titled "Welsh-Rare-Beat (in political context)" by Super Furry Animals frontman and Sain label expert Gruff Rhys, who helped select the tracks for this fine release. This one's a gem! [RH]






Kompakt Total 6

"The Difference It Makes" The MFA
"Panic Room" Thomas/Mayer

Kompakt have returned to form with an essential volume in their Total series. Kompakt Total 6 is, hands down, the best compilation that the label has released, and despite the lengthy 24-track double CD package, there is not a bad song in the bunch, not even a mediocre one. It has some of the hits that we all know and love, but it also has a bunch of those vinyl only tracks that CD buyers are dying for. (MFA's "The Difference It Makes" anyone?) The compilation also contains a slew of new cuts that are either exclusive or are not yet released, like Dirk Leyers' "Wellen." (Yes, he was one-half of the now defunct Closer Musik, along with Aguayo). There is not much more that I can say about this collection and the Kompakt label in general. They can do pop, they can do dance, and they can do ambient…and yes, they do it better than anyone else around at the moment. If you are a fan of electronic music, or if you have ever bought a Kompakt record, you need this! [JS]







$10.99 LP


Twin Cinema

"Broken Beads"
"Twin Cinema"

Fresher than Cream, twice as cool as Velvet Revolver, more Canadian than CSN&Y, the New Pornographers may be the only super-group ever that is truly greater than the sum of its parts. On their own, Carl Newman (Zumpano), Dan Bejar (Destroyer), and Neko Case have all sung some great songs. But while they have spent their musical careers in pursuit of their "art," somehow the confines of the New Pornographers focused pop sound has liberated the three main creative forces in the group to wake up and have fun making music again. On Twin Cinema, their third full-length, the band sounds as fresh and energized as ever. This is not vapid party music (which, by the way, I do love), but it is undeniably fun pop that passionately throws together elements of A.M. radio, glam-pop, and old-fashioned rock and roll. The intelligent lyricism and honest emotions paired with the chiming guitars, soaring harmonies, and slight hint of danger makes this record hard to deny. If not for the 99-cent bin cover art, I might call this one of the year's minor masterpieces, but you're probably going to read this review and go download the tracks anyway, so who really cares how the thing looks? It sounds great. [JM]






August Born
(Drag City)

"Birds & Sun & Clay"
"A Thousand Butterflies"

August Born is a collaboration between Ben Chasny (Six Organs of Admittance) and Japanese underground luminary Hiroyuki Usui (once a member of Ghost and drummer of Keiji Haino's Fushitsusha), who's more recently known for his minimal psychedelic work as L, whose Holy Letters album was rereleased by VHF recently. The self-titled album is a product of a lengthy period of tape trading between the two, with Chasny mostly sticking to vocals and guitar, while Usui plays a wider array of instruments, including banjo, tambura, and vibes.

August Born is a beautiful piece of drifting drones, understated psychedelia, and meditative folk, with Usui seemingly at the helm slightly more often than Chasny, that bridges Holy Letters with the Six Organs back catalog. While I'm not going to break down the album song by song, fans of Chasny's will recognize the plaintive and haunting "Birds & Sun & Clay," one of the standout moments on the record, as it's been a Six Organs live staple for quite some time. Obviously, this comes highly recommended, and coupled with the Gary Higgins reissue, I think we can agree that the Drag City boys done well this summer. [AK]






Bluffer's Guide to the Flight Deck

"Happy 13"
""Popstar Researching Oblivion"

London's Flotation Toy Warning are a strange bunch. Their bizarre story of formation--which involves a former flying machine test pilot, a few rival musical instrument inventors and their mutual passion for rare butterflies and astrophonics (huh?)--doesn't really prepare you for this lovely, lulling record. They've obviously studied up on their psych-pop; with lush arrangements and tons of ear candy, these 10 tracks (which average out to be seven-minutes each) pay tribute to classic albums by Van Dyke Parks and the Beach Boys, not to mention Jack Nitzsche's cinematic productions. However, I don't detect that the five-piece ensemble were looking to record Song Cycle Pt. II, but rather create some sort of modern, eccentric baroque pop out of traditional and homemade instruments, and a small library of found sounds.

At times, Bluffer's Guide to the Flight Deck has the dreamy detachment of Kid A, except instead of Eskimo-kissing Richard D. James, FTW substitute Radiohead's icy electronica flirtations for a substantial human grope, by way of their penchant for Scott Walker-esque melodrama. I still can't quite pin down whom the warbly, slightly operatic vocalist Donald Drusky reminds me of. Names like Thom Yorke, Jeff Buckley, Antony and even Freddie Mercury have crossed my mind, but it's none of those, or maybe a combination of all. Regardless, his floating, tremolo melodies are perfect for these melancholic songs, which may move at a snail's pace but still pull you into a soothing pop narcosis, amidst a slow, unfolding soundtrack filled with chirping birds, singing saws, music boxes and the occasional harpsichord. I'm willing to bet that in between producing Mercury Rev and Flaming Lips records, Dave Fridmann will be giving Flotation Toy Warning a call. [GH]








"Inferno No Mundo"
"Rock Dream"

A blazing Brazilian reissue hot on the heels of Lula Cortes' Paebiru, also on Shadoks Germany. Although, sounding worlds apart from their mystical psych-folk labelmates, Bango's self-titled album, originally released in 1970, may just as well fall in the same league of treasured psychedelic bygone-brilliance. The first cut will already be a familiar head-nodder for those that copped the Brazilian volume of the Love, Peace and Poetry compilations. Bango delivers originative, well-crafted songs in both endearing English and Portuguese--poppy, hip-shaking rhythms (a quasi-glam-fluenced album from Brazil?) with hard rock sensibility, swirl-fuzzed axes, flying back-breakin'-beats, and psyched organs for a fist-pumping go-go-pogo good time. [MT]






Bright Ideas

"Through with People"
"I Wanna Know Girls"

Mac McCaughan, Superchunk, Merge Records…if there was indie-rock royalty, these names would feature prominently on the coat of arms. But as far as I can tell, the twin plagues of corporate raiders and drum 'n' bass decimated the kingdom sometime before the turn of the new millennium, and the royal family went deep underground (almost funny in these more enlightened times to conceive of the primal fear drum 'n' bass could wield in those dark days…but jeez, remember Goldie…I still shiver at the mere mention of his name).

Flash forward to 2005, and we find Superchunk in some sort of suspended animation, not over and done, but no longer a full-time band, sporadically releasing new material and touring infrequently. Running Merge, the label McCaughan co-founded with fellow 'Chunk Laura Ballance, should be a full-time job, as the label is likely charting its biggest year ever with the huge successes of the Arcade Fire and Spoon, but alas, Merge was started as a home for McCaughan's own music. He has kept his label vital and relevant during changing times, and has also released one of the best albums of his career with Bright Ideas. The record is a wonderful mix of pop, energy, and subtlety that will thrill any longtime fans of Superchunk or Portastatic, and should win over more than a few younger fans of bands like the Shins and the New Pornographers, who clearly learned a thing or two from the man himself.

Originally conceived as an outlet for his lo-fi, acoustic, and generally less balls-out rock and roll songs that were not fitting into the Superchunk cannon, McCaughan has released folk, bossa nova, and laid-back rock records under the Portastatic moniker, always with his patented pop sensibility. But as this has become his primary creative outlet of late, the new album is more diverse and varied than previous offerings, and contains several exhilarating rockers alongside more relaxed and introspective numbers. Bright Ideas is a great record, whose depth and variety make for a rare album-length listening experience well worth an hour of stereo time, and several trips to the repeat button. You think you know Portastatic, and you are right, but you are wrong too…this record is as good as you could imagine, and carries with it the hope and promise of a time few dare to remember…the king is dead, long live the king. [JM]







GRLZ: Women Ahead of Their Time
(Crippled Dick)

"Mind Your Own Business" Delta 5
"Softness" Dorothy

Here's a long needed ode to a few of the trail-blazing women of punk and post-punk. GRLZ is an impressive collection of the forgotten and the renowned, and serves as evidence of what punk actually broke. Fast forward 20 years and it still sounds raw and fresh, and so perfect it makes my heart swell. Every song is a gem, from the cherished Slits and Delta 5 to the lesser known Dorothy and Ludus. Also featured is Rip, Rig and Panic, an early and impressive project of a teenaged Neneh "Buffalo Stance" Cherry. The booklet includes the original cover art and a love-letter-forward from Flying Lizards' Vivien Goldman. [JO]







Capture & Release
(Hydra Head)


Those already familiar with Khanate, as well as Julian Cope's phrase "slow is the new loud," will not be let down by Capture & Release. Forty-minutes of spatial, foreboding noise punctuated by feedback, cymbal crashes, throat tearing vocals and plenty of low-end are revealed in two epic songs. Fans of the SunnO))) aesthetic (and other Steven O'Malley projects, including Burning Witch) will know what this 'brooding black doom metal' brings.

"Capture" stays on an even keel of dark, dramatic guitar chords, broken up only by drum rolls, cymbal washes, and the odd scrape and mumbled phrase. Oddly enough, it proved a scarily fitting soundtrack to the book I'm reading, The Historian, which chronicles generations of historians who disappear while inadvertently keeping alive the Dracula legend.

"Release," the longer track of the two, subtly snakes away from the constant dirge, beginning with almost lucid, subsonic bass rumble and guitar pick-up clicks. It explodes with Alan Dubin's searing vocals and is carried and cued by distorted guitar strums until all other noise drops out, except one reverberating bass note. Whispered lyrics weave in and out of this bass note amid sparse, spooky post-punkish guitar mid-song. Then the dirge begins again, signaled by warbling low-end, finally unleashing the spatial but thick pandemonium.

It's impossible to describe this effect done live--emotional, gut wrenching and raw with only the tribal drums leading the painfully slow tempo, exploding in intervals with sheer noise. But this song comes close. Go see them live, then pick up this album to shake off your disbelief. [LG]







$9.99 Maxi CD w/Video

F**k Forever
(Rough Trade Import)

"F*ck Forever"
"Babyshambles" (Only available on the Maxi-CD)

On a particularly boozy night, Babyshambles might be your new best friend, with one arm around your neck and reaching for your beer (or your girl) with the other. A new friend so charming, he may possess the power to convince you to do something that you may regret in the morning. "F**k Forever" could be the lackadaisical anthem to what remains of our fleeting summer. So until the morning comes, drink and be merry as you get dizzy from dancing and singing, without really knowing what you're singing and you're not sure if anyone is still by your side. But as long as Babyshambles is in your ears you're safe as you punch your lazy fist into the night air. (CD-single features "F**k Forever" and "Monkey Casino." On the maxi-CD, "F**k Forever" is backed with "East of Eden," "Babyshambles" and a video.) [JO]






Bryant Park Moratorium Rally
(Table of the Elements)

"Moratorium Rally (1969)"

Tony Conrad, proud papa of American minimalism, and coiner of choice koans such as "Music is like history, completely in the present," returns with another zinger: "The media and reality: It's hard to attend both." Such a statement is one to keep in mind for both the recently resuscitated Table of the Elements imprint and this recently excavated tape that Conrad made out of his loftspace on 42nd Street. With a mic aimed out at the sprawl of war protesters and one aimed back at his television set, Conrad opens a huge can of worms: the relationship of reality vs. presentation of 'reality,' sound in space vs. sound in time, the '60s vs. the '00s, the aware vs. the oblivious, the heightened spike of history vs. the onslaught of the everyday, etc. As you listen to this document, the two components start to shake free from the grasp of the other, presenting conflicting stories of 'what is happening.' The cries of protest get washed over by crosstown traffic noise, the echoes resonate not just through Midtown but through the boob tube, a parade of crucial stars and voices who have been lost to time (save Woody Allen) are but a shout in the street. A fascinating snippet of time and place. [AB]






(Sub Pop)


Upon hearing that Zach Rogue was recording his new album with a full band, I have to say that I was pretty wary. Last year's Sub Pop reissue of Out of the Shadows was one of those records that took me by surprise. It was like if the Shins had moved to California and soaked up some sun. It is a great pop record. In October, Rogue Wave are back with their first full-length as a "proper" band and from what I have heard the album is just as good, if not better than its precursor. 10:1 is a teaser of sorts, as it features one track from the album and three unreleased gems. As you might've guessed, "10:1" is the single. While it's a good song, it's actually probably my least favorite from the forthcoming record. The other tracks on this EP are great, and slightly stripped down compared to the album. Keep an eye out for this bunch, their forthcoming full-length is a stunner. [JS]







"Big Sugar Plantations"

It's a curious cocktail, this one. What went on in Jim Cuomo's head we'll never know, but what came out is best explored by open minds. This second Spoils of War release is a compilation of unreleased studio and live recordings made between 1968-70, and runs the gamut from bubblegum pop and folk rock, via Zappa-inspired madness and noodly organ jams, to a 10-minute drum solo ("Big City Frank's Drum Solo," natch) and electronic experimentation. Regarding the latter, Cuomo's music teacher (some guy named John Cage) might've been of some influence there.

Truly unique music for its time, with reference points as far apart as the length of the drum solo. Fans of the mostly heavy psych of the first album are bound to be disappointed but how about a highball of Krautrock, Mothers of Invention, and Henry Cow? Take a sip. [AK]






And His Music
(Fass Import)

"Streets of Calcutta"
"The Lonely Rider"

With that imminent buzz of sitar on most '60's sides, said meeting of East and West usually sounds dated and extremely hokey, a cheap fastening of disparate cultures with regard for neither. Be wary of such a knee-jerk reaction with the music of Ananda Shankar though. It may be easy to hear him as some Bollywood precursor with his early covers of "Light My Fire" or "Jumpin' Jack Flash" (which is an amazing hypnotic track nonetheless) and his melding of sitar, tambura, and tabla to Moog, backbeats, and female cooers on his first album, but his second record goes beyond the pale. With a large group of players, Shankar works toward a true meeting of cultures with an album that resonates much like a spiritually minded jazz album of the time (think Alice Coltrane). Two of his heaviest dancefloor tracks, "Streets of Calcutta" and "Dancing Drums", bookend this very strong disc. [AB]








Black Rebel Motorcycle Club had a rough couple of years. Not too long after the release of their sophomore album Take Them On, On Your Own, the trio lost the support of their label and were all but grounded. It's certainly enough to make most bands call it a day, but two years later, Black Rebel Motorcycle Club are back on their wheels with a third full-length. Naming their new album after Allen Ginsberg's famous beat outcry, I expected them to come back with a vengeance, pissed off with backs turned to the audience (Jesus and Mary Chain-style) and amp volumes ratcheted up to 11. But Howl is quite the opposite. B.R.M.C. has put away the Marshall stacks and taken out their acoustic guitars, creating an introspective album that is much less proto-punk Stooges and Velvets, owing more to mid-to-late-'60s Dylan and Stones. Perhaps partially inspired by their recent reconciliation with estranged drummer Nick Jago, songs like "Gospel Song", with its bluesy gospel chorus, are reminiscent of Spacemen 3's lethargic enlightenment, pointing towards redemption amidst a folky backdrop. [GH]







Split Single

A split-single featuring two of today's most unique vocalists, Xiu Xiu's Jamie Stewart and Devendra Banhart. Each artist covers the other's song, Xiu Xiu taking on "The Body Breaks" and Banhart sings a stripped-down version of "Support Our Troops Oh." Extremely limited.







Antics: The Special Edition

Attention Interpol completists, diehards, and those few of you who might have slept on last year's Antics. Matador has just released a special, limited edition of their second album which comes with a bonus CD that features five songs (including the unreleased "Song Seven" and four other tracks remixed by Interpol), plus videos for "Slow Hands," "Evil" and "C'Mere."




  All of this week's new arrivals.

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[AB] Adrian Burkholder
[LG] Lisa Garrett
[GH] Gerald Hammill
[RH] Rob Hatch-Miller
[AK] Andreas Knutsen
[JM] Josh Madell
[JO] Jennifer Orozco
[JS] Jeremy Sponder
[MT]Mahssa Taghinia

- all of us at Other Music

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