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   May 29, 2013  
Mount Kimbie
Otis G. Johnson
The Pastels
King Tuff
Good God! Apocryphal Hymns
Rinse 22: Mixed by Kode9
Miles 12"
Henry Flynt
Grim Tower
Damien Jurado
Sean Nicholas Savage
Foxygen 7"

Kyle MF Hall

Broken Hearted Dragonflies: Insect Electronica from Southeast Asia

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This Saturday, Brooklyn Arbor PS 414 is throwing a benefit with a fun-filled afternoon featuring arts, crafts and games for the kids, food from the likes of Urban Rustic, Allswell, Van Leeuwen, and Papabubble, and lots of musical performances including appearances from Lee Fields & the Expressions and Charles Bradley! Tickets are $10 per adult and free for kids under 12, with proceeds going to support the school's music program.

BROOKLYN ARBOR PLAYGROUND: Keap Street, Between S. 2nd & S. 3rd Streets, Williamsburg, BKLN
J/M/Z Marcy Street Stop or L/G Lorimer/Metropolitan Street Stop

Other Music's summer Monday residency at New York City's Ace Hotel kicks off on June 3 and goes through to the end of August! During those months, you'll find a different member of our staff DJing their favorite records and countless varieties of music inside the gorgeous lobby bar every Monday evening from 8pm to midnight, and we hope you'll come and join us as we shake off those dog days that are finally here. So mark your calendar: Other Music's Summer DJ Residency at Ace Hotel, every Monday in June, July and August. Here's the full schedule:

6/03 - Gerald Hammill
6/10 - Ryan Naideau
6/17 - Chris Pappas
6/24 - Gerald Hammill
7/01 - Mikey IQ Jones
7/08 - Amanda Chouette
7/15 - Pam Garavano-Coolbaugh & Michael Stasiak
7/22 - Andreas Knutsen
7/29 - Scott Mou
8/05 - Amanda Chouette
8/12 - Chris Pappas
8/19 - Ryan Naideau
8/26- Pam Garavano-Coolbaugh & Michael Stasiak

ACE HOTEL: 20 W. 29th St. NYC
8:00pm to Midnight | Facebook Event Page





$14.99 CD
$17.99 CD Deluxe
$24.99 LPx2+CD


False Idols
(False Idols)

"Nothing Matters"
"Tribal Drums"

After a number of records that seemed to turn away or alienate longtime fans, and a tumultuous, uneven stint on Domino Records that showed promise and fleeting moments of brilliance, Tricky has returned with a new label and album that share a name; to say that it's arguably the best thing he's created since Angels with Dirty Faces is a bit of an understatement. False Idols returns to a sound that both looks back to his "golden era" of Maxinquaye through to Angels, yet updates it with a sleek, sharp focus that he's never seemed to have been able to manage over the course of an entire full-length since that early era. It helps that countless others have caught up and learned from Tricky's early work; Kevin Martin's King Midas Sound helped make this sonic environment more critically acceptable again over the last few years, and everyone from the Tri Angle label's roster to Demdike Stare and even James Blake have taken key elements of the magic Tricky conjured and have brought them further into contemporary consciousness without the trappings and pitfalls of all of the "trip-hop" clones that sprouted like fungus throughout the early 2000s.

It helps matters that Tricky has found excellent female vocal foils with whom he collaborates throughout the album, and that he returns to the foggy, dirt-encrusted hot-boxed textures that first earned him attention. His knack for taking classic, seemingly untouchable material and re-contextualizing it for his own private insights has returned as well, with the man mutating Them's "Gloria," Chet Baker's rendition of "My Funny Valentine," and even a bit of his own classic work, leading to some of the album's highlights. What makes False Idols work so successfully, though, is its casual nature; he's not reaching for an ambition that is out of reach, but tempering his strengths into an environment that makes perfect sense. I'll be the first to admit that this album took me by complete surprise; as a longtime fan, and someone who still regularly listens to those classic early records, looking to them for constant inspiration, I can honestly say that this is sitting pretty high up on my shortlist of personal favorites for this year. If you've been a fan, pick this up immediately, and if you've been digging on the sounds of those aforementioned acts who've been creating with recipes from his musty cookbook, grip this and get re-schooled. Welcome back, Tricky. I missed you. [IQ]




$14.99 CD


Cold Spring Fault Less Youth

"Made to Stray"
"You Took Your Time"

In 2010, Dominic Maker and Kai Campos released their debut album as Mount Kimbie on the Hotflush label, and Crooks & Lovers was a much-acclaimed leftfield offering of post-dubstep minimalism and bass/house abstraction. Now with their sophomore effort on new home Warp Records, the duo has shifted their focus from lonely bedroom beats to a brighter and poppier sound. Much like James Blake, Darkstar, or Disclosure, Mount Kimbie have successfully reestablished themselves as a proper band with proper songs, adding vocals, choruses, and some great melodies and sonic tweaks to their signature production style. In fact, Cold Spring Fault Less Youth shares lots of similarities to Blake's recently released Overgrown album; the growth showcased on both records is a wonderful thing to witness, as both artists have moved well beyond being novice producers, with their song craft maturing, expanding and deepening. A variety of structures are used throughout Cold Spring Fault Less Youth, from silky smooth ambient moments to bubbling and thumping house, to accomplished melodic pop and satisfying UK rap (I do consider King Krule a rapper, by the way), as well as some instrumental electronic/acoustic shoegaze moments. Alongside Campos' very British vocals and delivery, the aforementioned King Krule does a great job with his two songs ("You Took Your Time" and "Meter, Pale, Tone"), accomplishing the pub-crawl atmosphere that RZA attempted to capture on Blake's latest, but with better results. Though I thoroughly enjoyed Mount Kimbie's debut, this new album is overall a more complete and solid release, and the transition in sound feels natural, effortless, and in my opinion, an improvement on something that was already great. Mount Kimbie have taken their place as one of the best exports of the ever-shifting sound of post-post-dubstep UK electronic pop, and Cold Spring Fault Less Youth is a solid contender for my best of 2013 list; you may even see it sitting higher than James Blake by year's end. Let's just say I highly recommend this record! [DG]




$16.99 LP


Everything - God Is Love 78
(Numero Group)

Simply floating out of the aether, Detroit denizen Otis G. Johnson's Everything - God Is Love '78 is by far one of the most spectral, unclassifiable listens I've heard all year. Ostensibly a gospel record, it swaps that genre's sometime exclamatory exhortations in favor of a supremely personal vision that's much more akin to a private conversation between Johnson and God, with crepuscular tempos provided by a Hammond Rhythm Ace. Almost dirge-like, with tinkling keys and compelling bum notes and an obfuscating cloud of tape hiss providing a near celestial backdrop, the haunting late-night vibe present throughout proves simply undeniable. Johnson had a track on last year's genre-defining Personal Space compilation, but this Numero Group LP reissue thankfully provides us with a much more complete portrait of this man's affecting sound world. This is just an absolutely incredible and deeply moving album, and by far one of my favorite releases this year. ESSENTIAL. [MK]




$16.99 LP+MP3


(In the Red)

"I'll Be Gone"
"Woke Up in a Police Car"

The Oblivians are back with their first studio album since '97's Play Nine Songs with Mr. Quintron and it shreds! Greg, Jack, and Eric O. split up songwriting duties and the gritty garage atmospherics you've come to expect are in full force! Cartwright kicks Desperation off with the strong opener, "I'll Be Gone," which is a reminder of his ability to blast out perfect garage-pop anthems effortlessly, with a rollicking rhythm and snappy blown out tambourine dominating the mix. For fans of Greg's recent Parting Gifts project there's a lot to love on here... Other highlights include "Pinball King," a '50s-style catchy rocker, and "Fire Detector," which spins outta control in a distorted guitar haze. Nothing groundbreaking here, but totally solid for fans of garage punk and the Goner/In the Red back catalogue. [RN]




$18.99 LP+MP3


Slow Summits

"Check My Heart"
"Wrong Light"

More than three decades into a career that has, by design, generally shrugged anything approaching careerist ambition, the Pastels are back with a supremely enjoyable album that again shows why these DIY lifers are one of the more influential and important indie bands ever, while still remaining totally unknown in the mainstream. Some things change, some things stay the same with the Pastels, and while Slow Summits is the group's most refined and best-sounding recording to date, it is still a quietly personal and deeply intimate journey into Pastel-land, with Stephen and Katrina and a broad cast of more than 20 supporting players, including many familiar and always-welcome names, like Gerard Love and Norman Blake, both of Teenage Fanclub, Ronald Lippok of To Rococo Rot, and famed arranger Craig Armstrong. As ever, these songs dwell on the pains and pleasures of everyday life, the small victories and heartbreaks of human existence, yet here, in an embracing production from John McEntire, the bedside whisperings and often simplistic strumming are couched in a lush and lovely orchestration that owes much to classic pop turns from the likes of Burt Bacharach, with perfectly placed strings, horns and percussion flourishes filling out these tracks without ever detracting from the raw simplicity that always defined the band. It's understated yet grand, homespun yet meticulously executed, and if you are not already on this bus, this is as good a place as any for fans of groups like Belle & Sebastian, Yo La Tengo, Magnetic Fields, etc. to get on board. [JM]




$17.99 LP


King Tuff Was Dead

Originally released back in 2008 as a limited-run LP and cassette, King Tuff's debut album was a total mind-melter amongst the then current crop of indie bands. It was a perfect blast of power-pop weirdness and pseudo-sincerity in a sea of music that was either too ironic or too self aware or too trying to be something or just plain boring. Fast forward to now, King Tuff Was Dead still sounds amazing and blows pretty much everything else pop, punk, and indie outta the water some five years later.

Equal parts glam rock, power pop, and DIY punk, this LP was a summer soundtrack for many when it came out. Tightly home-recorded and catchy, singer/songwriter Kyle Thomas was sitting on this particular batch of tunes hot off the heels of former folk-rock group Feathers and decided to record the album by his lonesome. "Dancing on You," the opening track, kicks the whole thing off with driving electric guitars, sliding acoustics and a killer chorus. "Connection" is another highlight -- landing somewhere between the bubblegum sweetness of Hubble Bubble and raw realness of the Exploding Hearts. Album highlight "Sun Medallion" finds Thomas trading in electric for acoustic in a Middle Eastern-tinged mid-paced burner with psychedelic lyrics and shaky percussion. Any way you look at it, it's great to have this album back in stock and it really speaks volumes on its importance in the trajectory of modern indie music. Play it loud!!! [RN]





Tales of a Grass Widow

"Tears for Animals"

Once a sort of punch line for haters of the toxic "freak folk" moniker, CocoRosie have turned out to be far too slippery to let that silly subgenre tie up their creativity for long, and on their fifth full-length, the Casady sisters have made one of their more compelling (or least annoying, if their early affect rubbed you the wrong way) albums to date. Recorded with Valgeir Sigurosson, it's largely a loop-based electronic production -- pulsing rhythms and acoustic samples that could rightly be called trip-hop -- and coupled with the sisters' quavering vocal delivery gives the record an almost Bjork-ian vibe. Ancient and futurist, poppy yet somewhat experimental and abstract, along with some guest appearances from longtime collaborators like Antony Heggarty, this might not be the CocoRosie album to upend all of your preconceptions, but it is accomplished and interesting, and well worth a listen for the longtime fans. [JM]






(Root Strata)

Brooklyn duo and Psychic Ills crew Messages tap into the deepest stoned zone with their new long player, Mirage. Side-A opens with a heavy electronic 'drone gourd' wave, with tremolo-ed wah guitar sprinkled on top. Second track "Snake" introduces taiko percussion moves and chanted vocals. The flip side is one long, soupy, extended drone wall titled "Magaraga," and is beautifully harrowing in its length and density. This album sounds really great and it's interesting to hear the multitude of traditional instruments utilized during the recording sessions. There's something about the basement vibe that not only recalls La Monte Young's work with vocalist Pandit Pran Nath, but also reminds us that amazing cabals like Double Leopards and Hototogisu once existed and played this kinda stuff 'cross the globe in the early '00s. It's cool to bring it back... [RN]




$22.99 LPx2


Good God! Apocryphal Hymns
(Numero Group)

"Get Involved" Jonah Thompson
"A Message Especially from God" Robert Vanderbilt and the Revolution

The Numero Group have really outdone themselves with this one. Good God! Apocryphal Hymns is a deep, stunning compilation of private-press psychedelic-gospel soul that ties together elements of classic, early Westbound-era Funkadelic and Invictus-era Parliament, the smooth urban preachings of Curtis Mayfield, and the DIY weirdness of Sly's There's a Riot Goin' On and the recent Personal Space collection. The comp is overflowing with flanged, phased guitar solos, thumping and skittering drumbox beats, loose and almost drunken rhythm sections, and a passion deeper than the Grand Canyon. This is honestly one of the nest gospel collections I've heard precisely because it so effortlessly combines the teachings of the Big Man Upstairs with the secular pleasures of then-contemporary R&B music. These songs are also filled with esoteric little production touches and subtle (or not-so-subtle) flourishes in the arrangements that make each cut stand out, which tends to be a problem with many of Numero's comps -- after a while, the tracks can tend to all blend together. Not here. It's masterfully sequenced, and is honestly one of the label's best releases to date. If you dig the sounds of leftfield soul, deep psychedelic grooves, or a bit of private-press oddball magic, you definitely NEED this. It's wonderfully cracked in all the right places, yet is also straight enough to play for your churchgoing grandparents; how can I give this anything but my highest recommendation for that reason alone?!? [IQ]






Rinse 22: Mixed by Kode9

"Pusher Taker" Morgan Zarate
"Uh" Kode9

The UK-based Rinse radio station and label continues their nicely-curated mix series with this, their 22nd installment, featuring multifaceted artist, producer and Hyberdub label head Steve "Kode9" Goodman. The Hyberdub imprint is as influential as Rinse, and across these 37 tracks the many sides of the UK bass movement collide with ease. Starting off with a beautiful blend of Burial and Theo Parrish, Kode9 steadily builds a great mix that is dense yet accessible, featuring cuts from a globe-spanning who's who of current favorites in the underground electronic scene. Over the CD's hour-long playtime, the likes of Joy O, Jam City, Kuedo, the Bug, Rustie, S-Type, and Faze Miyake form an intricately layered web of bass, beats, and vocals. Another one of the more interesting elements of the mix is how the tempos rise from around 120 bpm into the 160s, with the last half-hour or so featuring a great collection of footwork tracks from some of Chicago's top producers including RP Boo and DJ Rashad. In describing his DJ style, Goodman told the press, "Generally, these sets start relatively simple rhythmically, and then get more fucked up as the mix goes on," which sums this disc up perfectly. I've been a fan and follower of both the Rinse and Hypedub labels through the years and this is one of the best sets from either of those established entities. Spanning house, dubstep, grime, bass, techno, and footwork, Kode9 delivers a balanced selection of hits, exclusives and rarities, with each fleeting sonic moment from start to finish top-notch and highly enjoyable. These Rinse mixes always serve as timely primers of the sound and personalities who are keeping the airwaves and dance floors around the world spinning, sweating, and ever expanding, and this edition is no exception. It's definitely a must-have for the upcoming open air-season, with the days of the escalating temperatures finally arriving, but be warned: your heart rate will rise upon listening. [DG]






(Modern Love)

Unsecured is a 30-minute follow-up EP to the recent killer full-length by Miles, best known as a member of Demdike Stare and Pendle Coven. While the album was mostly centered on textures and dark ambient spaces peppered with rhythmic anchors, these four extended cuts are more focused toward bodily movement, overflowing with jagged, clattering metallic edges, deep dub bass grooves, and dystopian synth textures that echo back toward house and techno histories. It's brutally warped, cracked material, but sharper than shrapnel and absolutely KILLER on a good system. I loved the Faint Hearted album, but this EP honestly wipes the floor with it; it's everything that was great about the full-length with an added kick in the kinetic balls. If you're still feeling wishy-washy, I'll say this: it's worth it solely for the massive industrial house banger "Infinite Jest," which sounds like Theo Parrish cutting an Ugly Edit of an old Z'ev track. Absolutely monstrous 12", and worth every penny. [IQ]




$25.99 LPx2


(Superior Viaduct)

Graduation documents Henry Flynt's mid-'70s and early-'80s output for the first time on vinyl. Here we find Flynt expanding on his new American tape music in more of a song-based style. Infectious, meandering singing is accompanied by a loose backing band on many tracks, bringing to mind kindred, fried songsmiths Mayo Thompson and even Fear-era John Cale. These songs ebb and flow, and are accompanied by lonesome violin and full-band tinkering. However, for fans of the New American Ethnic Music series on Locust, there's no shortage of instrumental moments and repetitive avant moves. On tracks like "A Portrait," Flynt shreds away at his stringed instrument, bringing to mind Appalachian roots music, 20th century minimalism and hillbilly country. It's really a great collection, as there's no lack of experimentation and a variety of song styles. To round things out, side D is comprised of one long track, "Celestial Power," and will most definitely appeal to fans of La Monte Young, Terry Riley, etc. For new and old fans alike, this is truly great stuff. [RN]




$18.99 LP


Anarchic Breezes
(Outer Battery)

"Soft Séance"
"All the Beautiful Things"

Self-described as "acoustic death folk," this new project from Black Mountain main man Stephen McBean and Imaad Wasif (who is best known for his work with Lou Barlow and as a touring guitarist with Yeah Yeah Yeahs) is a dark, rootsy rock set that should appeal to fans of McBean's other projects, without exactly sounding like any of them. Both "acoustic" and "folk" are only occasionally central to the actual makeup of the recordings ("death," maybe more so), but there is a plainspoken simplicity to the sound here -- strumming guitars and the occasional finger-picked banjo or acoustic guitar -- that gives this vaguely gothic, usually hushed rock a sort of primal pagan vibe that does sort of fit the descriptor, and comes off like a tribal punk take on '70s-era British folk rock -- I'm sure they are fans of later Current 93 stuff, but it's not nearly as creepy or weird as that. With the rhythm section of Darker My Love filling out the band, it's a darkly melodic, churning album that drifts by mellow and gloomy, but with a simmering intensity that belies pitch-black waters below. [JM]




$17.99 LPx2

Where Shall You Take Me - Deluxe Reissue
(Secretly Canadian)

Essential reissue of Damien Jurado's classic 2003 side, Where Shall You Take Me. Lovingly packaged with demo versions and an additional EP, this new presentation really shines and solidifies Take Me's place in indie rock history. As is with most Jurado albums, this record is a beautiful collection of hushed and slow poetic verses, with the occasional laidback rocker thrown in for good measure. If you haven't heard this man's music yet and fancy yourself some Songs:Ohia, Sun Kil Moon, Iron & Wine, or even Pedro the Lion, now's the time! [RN]




$16.99 LP+MP3


Other Life

"She Looks Like You"
"More Than I Love Myself"

Arbutus records has been blowing up as of late, bringing artists like Grimes, Majical Cloudz and Doldrums to the world stage, yet Sean Nicholas Savage is not an arty new Montreal discovery, but he is a seminal scenester -- he was one of the label's very first signings, and this is supposedly his sixth full-length, though it's the first we've seen. There is no better way to describe this than as adult contemporary -- it's pure '80s slow jam, with classic preset keyboard sounds and thin Casio rhythms, plus the occasional sax solo, but rather than coming off as mustachioed kitsch (yes he sports one on the cover shot), Savage's singing is so heartfelt and raw, these songs seem truly sincere, with an impassioned "True Colors" vibe to the best tracks -- and there are a few. [JM]





No Destruction

We love Foxygen, truly, but in describing their songs there is no better way than referencing their references -- the A-side is the album track with that Stones' verse, the Bowie lyric quote, and that snippy line about Brooklyn that is not suitable for a family publication like this. (BTW, did The Deli really just name them the best up-and-coming band in NYC? We're pretty sure they have arrived, and they live in LA, right?) The exclusive B-side sounds like an album outtake; it's a nice mid-tempo track about love and money, not necessarily in that order.






The Boat Party
(Wild Oats)

Released on his own Wild Oats label, Kyle Hall's The Boat Party knocks debut LP expectations out of the park by doing exactly what he's been doing so well for the last so many years since being announced as the new up 'n' coming young gun of Detroit: confounding expectations! I mean, a double-LP album coming out on the heels of the recent Zug Island EP??! What were we supposed to expect after being delightfully flummoxed by that one? Something as ill, loose and psychedelically unhinged as that can only make us throw up our hands and say, "Okay, whatever you wanna do, just don't stop!" And with The Boat Party, he manages to push his style forward while making it even less precious.

First thing about this record: listen to it loud! Not that it is an album of mindless big-room bangers, but it's just that we made the mistake of playing this in the shop at a medium-low volume the first time and missed some of its special, subtle qualities that are revealed when turned up on the stereo or headphones -- the main one being that this is a really l-o-o-s-e and r-a-w batch of tracks with many of the cuts sporting select bits tastefully pumped into the overdriven red-zone. There's a very "live," controlled yet on-the-fly/jamming feel to these tracks that keeps your ears perked. At times samples, kicks and snares come and go at what seem like randomly varied volume levels, but when played loud the composition of these volumes prove to be an integral part of the Kyle Hall sound. (It's almost in the same way that the vinyl-esque clicks and pops in Stefan Betke's Pole project prove to be set into a delicate pattern, rather than just random as they first seem to be.)

The "live feel" also extends to the sounds themselves -- some seem like they were mic'd acoustically with foot pedal-driven metal percussion, and there's lots of well-placed swinging, (soft) clanging, banging, bumpin' and thumpin' goin' on here!!! There's a very intentionally un-polished, imperfect quality to the sounds that ultimately arrive at perfection in the way he arranges and delivers them. This quality, mixed with the typical space between the elements that Hall does so well, just sets this record even farther apart from the pack than expected. And finally we have the effectively wonderful, careening style shifts that range from the rather pretty, sultry "Crushed" to the straight-up juke of "Finna Pop," to the raw, jamming "Dr. Crunch" and "Spoof" and then back to the soulful, beautiful, almost turntable-edited, side-long "Measure2Measure," all given the patented rough-edged, deep, heady treatment by KMFH. While Omar S is doing such a great job of refining his sound, Kyle Hall seems to be inviting even a bit more wildness in his "Wild Oats." It works beautifully here. Another early best of the year! [SM]




$19.99 LP


Broken Hearted Dragonflies: Insect Electronica from Southeast Asia
(Sublime Frequencies)

Now available on LP. Broken Hearted Dragonflies: Insect Electronica from Southeast Asia was recorded by producer/musician Tucker Martine in Laos, Thailand, and Burma in the year 2000. The name is a bit of a misnomer, as these four long recordings of dragonflies, cicadas, and other insects haven't actually been put through any kind of electronic processing whatsoever. Alan Bishop's liner notes repeat a folk legend told to him by his Burmese wife. The story goes that the male Pazinne, or Broken Hearted Dragonfly, emits a bizarre sound and explodes from the chest immediately after mating with the female. The sounds that these insects make, whether they're actually dying of heartbreak or not, are totally otherworldly. Many moments really do sound like ultra-minimal electronic music, with oscillating static noise and seemingly unnatural changes in pitch and volume. It's difficult listening to be sure -- one person who heard it complained that it made him feel itchy -- but it's really rewarding. This is probably one of the most unusual of Sublime Frequencies' releases, equally hypnotic and bizarre. [RH]
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[DG] Daniel Givens
[RH] Rob Hatch-Miller
[[IQ] Mikey IQ Jones
[MK] Michael Klausman
[JM] Josh Madell
[SM] Scott Mou
[RN] Ryan Naideau

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