If you purchased a snake plant, asparagus fern, peace lily, or what have you from Mother Earth on Melrose Avenue in Los Angeles (or bought a Simmons mattress from Sears) in 1976, you also took home Plantasia, an album recorded especially for plants. Subtitled "warm earth music for plantsâ€¦and the people that love them," it was full of bucolic, charming, stoner-friendly, decidedly unscientific tunes enacted on the new-fangled device called the Moog. Few characters in early electronic music can be both fearless pioneers and cheesy trend-chasers, but Garson embraced both extremes, and has been unheralded as a result. When one writer rhetorically asked: "How was Garson's music so ubiquitous while the man remained so under the radar?" the answer was simple. Well before Brian Eno did it, Garson was making discreet music, both the man and his music as inconspicuous as a Chlorophytum comosum. Julliard-educated and active as a session player in the post-war era, Garson wrote lounge hits, scored plush arrangements for Doris Day, and garlanded weeping countrypolitan strings around Glen Campbell's "By the Time I Get to Phoenix."
Pirouetting on decadence, meeting eyes with a dizzy sensation, falling and flying at the same time - Lust For Youth have continually held poise through the most vitalising of times. Their new album, a self-titled collection of eight songs, is sure-footed where they had earlier feared to tread, and light-headed for a new set of reasons. The album is driven by a dance-pop agenda, hustling its way through upbeat peaks that level out into reflective ballads. While still taking clear cues from a crop of austere synth-pop, Lust For Youth sound brighter than they ever have before, taking tips from some of the flirtiest Eurobeat to aid their new direction.
Readjusting the Locks is the first Institute album written across the country, with half the band relocating from Texas to NYC. The band has seamlessly incorporated more '77 rock n' roll into their sound, some songs feeling like they could've been a Stiff Records single. This sound is emphasized by Ben Greenberg's (Uniform) expert production - crisp but still blown out and dirty. Lyrically, Readjusting the Locks moves away from the traditionally personal words of frontman Moses Brown. Rather than attacking the internal workings of his brain or its socialization, as on previous records, this album attempts to address the societal atmosphere in which his agita exists.
Blaming Neoliberalism and the irresponsible notions of utopia fostered under it, Brown argues that in recent decades the Western world's assumption that humanity would continue to prosper into the future has, on the contrary, created a disastrous political vacuum. Without a true plan for a sustainable future those in power will continue to offer humanity new policies, technologies, and politicians that promise change but are only capable of "readjusting the locks" on our incomprehensible existential predicament.
Droneflower is in bloom. The new collaboration between Marissa Nadler and Stephen Brodsky (Cave In, Mutoid Man), is a sprawling and expansive exercise in contrasts. It is the sound of the war between the brutal and the ethereal, the dark and the light, the past and the present, and the real and imagined.
Brodsky met Nadler for the first time in 2014 at Brooklyn's Saint Vitus Bar when he came to see her play on her July tour, and they quickly became friends. Both of them had been wanting to explore songwriting that didn’t fit into their existing projects, and they soon became energized by the prospect of working together. One of the first ideas they discussed was a horror movie soundtrack, and while Droneflower isn't that, it is a richly cinematic album. It's easy to imagine much of the record set to images, though it wasn't composed that way.
Mazy Fly, the second full-length by the Bay Area artist SPELLLING, explores the tension between the thrill of exploring the unknown and the terror of imminent destruction. Chrystia Cabral spent the summer of 2018 in her Berkeley studio reflecting on the thresholds of human progress and longing for a new and better tomorrow. She was struck by the way the same technologies that have given humans the ability to achieve utopian dreams of discovery have also brought the world to the precipice of dystopic global devastation. Despite the darkness of this reality, Mazy Fly is defiantly optimistic. It is a celestial voyage into the unknown, piloted by Cabral.
Mazy Fly musically traverses the spaces between languid, honey-soaked vocals and distant angelic whispers, from thumping 808 club beats to crunching tape loops, and from silky, smooth R&B to whirling organ sonatas. Cabral became enamored by the idea of flight as a harbinger of both progress and apocalypse, and that was expressed in the textures and compositional techniques she utilized. Swarms, flocks, flies, angels, spaceships, flying saucers â€“ all are represented sonically by Cabral and her Juno-106 synthesizer.
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Experimental lute player Jozef Van Wissem and acclaimed film director and musician Jim Jarmusch have a working relationship that dates back to 2006, when they ran into each other on the street in New York City and quickly struck up a friendship. Van Wissem contributed to the soundtrack for Jarmusch's 2013 movie Only Lovers Left Alive, and the two have collaborated on three previous studio albums - Apokatastasis, Concerning the Entrance Into Eternity, and The Mystery of Heaven. An Attempt to Draw Aside the Veil is their second release as a duo for Sacred Bones Records, following The Mystery of Heaven, and its narrative picks up where that album left off.
Musically, the mostly instrumental album finds much of its power in minimalism. Van Wissem's unadorned lute traces the outlines of subdued electronics and ominous guitar drones laid down by Jarmusch. It's a subtle album, and repeat listens reveal vast depths in its dark corners. Above all, it's an album that sees two formidable collaborators complement each other brilliantly.
The new EP by Zola Jesus sees Nika Roza Danilova revisiting a pair of songs from her 2017 album, Okovi, alongside prolific composer and musician Johnny Jewel. In a nod to the maxi singles of the 1980s, the album features multiple remixed versions of the two songs, "Ash to Bone" and "Wiseblood." The track "Wiseblood (Johnny Jewel Remix)" is featured in the soundtrack to the film Beautiful Boy, directed by Felix Van Groeningen and starring TimothÃ©e Chalamet and Steve Carell.
Emily Noyes Vanderpoel (1842-1939) was an artist, collector, scholar, and historian working at the dawn of the 20th century. Her first and most prominent work, Color Problems: A Practical Manual for the Lay Student of Color, provides a comprehensive overview of the main ideas of color theory at the time, as well as her wildly original approaches to color analysis and interaction. Through a 21st century lens, she appears to stumble upon midcentury design and minimalism decades prior to those movements.
This book has for too long languished in antiquarian book markets, never receiving its proper audience. With this publication, we aim to change that, and have taken meticulous measures to reproduce the original artifact with this new edition. Using the most current digital methods and archival printing production, we aim to do justice to Vanderpoel's forgotten legacy as visionary and pioneer.
NYC's The Men have made a name for themselves as wayfaring musicians, constantly evolving and eluding their listeners. Before they were genre-hopping through country, post-punk, noise rock, and more, they were applying that experimental nature within the more confined space of punk. Within that genre they were wildly adventurous, playing noise shows, hardcore shows, rock shows, and switching up the instrumentation as they saw fit, while always operating within a general punk ethos. Their first demo was a hand-dubbed and spray-painted run of 32 copies, half of which worked, and their first shows were at New York dives like Tommy's Tavern, Matchless, and Don Pedro.
That hand-dubbed demo kicked off a furious run of creative output from 2008 to 2011, much of which is now collected on the new compilation, Hated. The songs on Hated are pulled from a variety of sources - the debut demo tape, a split with Nomos, a 7", a 12" EP, and a slew of unreleased demos, outtakes, and live recordings. These songs show the huge range and potential of a band still in its infancy, when they were just beginning to blaze the path they're still on to this day.
By the time Twin Peaks' second season had aired and Fire Walk With Me had just began principle production, Thought Gang had been born. The esoteric jazz side-project of David Lynch and Angelo Badalamenti evolved from the seeds of Twin Peaks' trademark slow cool jazz and blossomed into more experimental pastures: horizonless vistas of acid-soaked free-jazz, laced with spoken word narratives and sprawling noisescapes. Fire Walk With Me's soundtrack would ultimately showcase two preliminary tracks ('A Real Indication' and 'The Black Dog Runs at Night') from a full-length album that wouldn't see release for the next two and a half decades. Between May of 1992, and continuing throughout 1993, the bulk of the remaining material for the album was recorded in pieces. This dove-tailed into a string of contracted sessions for other Lynch-Badalamenti projects.
To celebrate the release of the 2018 Halloween film scored by John Carpenter, Cody Carpenter, and Daniel Davies, Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross (Nine Inch Nails) are releasing their version of Carpenter’s iconic Halloween theme as a limited edition 12", b/w Carpenter’s version. Reznor explains: “I clearly remember my friends and I at 13 years old conning our parents into letting us see Halloween when it came out in 1978. We left the theater forever changed. We were damaged and scarred, with the shit genuinely scared out of us and that theme stuck firmly in our heads. John Carpenter, it’s your fault that I turned out the way I did.”
Speaking about the new version, John Carpenter states, “Moody and dark, â€ªTrent Reznorâ€¬ and Atticus Ross’ version of Halloween does amazing justice to the original. I’m impressed."â€¬â€¬â€¬â€¬
The 2018 Halloween movie has the distinction of being the first film in the series with creator John Carpenter's direct involvement since 1982's Halloween III: Season of the Witch. Carpenter serves on the new David Gordon Green-directed installment as an executive producer, a creative consultant, and, thrillingly, as a soundtrack composer, alongside his collaborators from his three recent solo albums, Cody Carpenter and Daniel Davies.
The new soundtrack pays homage to the classic Halloween score that Carpenter composed and recorded in 1978, when he forever changed the course of horror cinema and synthesizer music with his low-budget masterpiece. Several new versions of the iconic main theme serve as the pulse of Green's film, its familiar 5/4 refrain stabbing through the soundtrack like the Shape's knife. The rest of the soundtrack is just as enthralling, incorporating everything from atmospheric synth whooshes to eerie piano-driven pieces to skittering electronic percussion. While the new score was made with a few more resources than Carpenter's famously shoestring original, its musical spirit was preserved.
THE HALLOWEEN (2018) SOUNDTRACK, NOW AVAILABLE ON A NEW FORMAT: For the first time, Sacred Bones Records is making the formerly mailorder-exclusive "art edition" of John Carpenter, Cody Carpenter, and Daniel Davies's Halloween soundtrack available for wide distribution. The art edition features deluxe packaging with unique art by Chris Bilheimer, as well as a massive foldout poster. This version is pressed on "Blood Puddle" color vinyl (clear vinyl with inset red "puddle") and is limited to 2000 units. The new Halloween movie has the distinction of being the first film in the series with creator John Carpenter's direct involvement since 1982's Halloween III: Season of the Witch. Carpenter serves on the new David Gordon Green-directed installment as an executive producer, a creative consultant, and, thrillingly, as a soundtrack composer, alongside his collaborators from his three recent solo albums, Cody Carpenter and Daniel Davies. The new soundtrack pays homage to the classic Halloween score that Carpenter composed and recorded in 1978, when he forever changed the course of horror cinema and synthesizer music with his low-budget masterpiece. Several new versions of the iconic main theme serve as the pulse of Green's film, it's familiar 5/4 refrain stabbing through the soundtrack like the Shape's knife. The rest of the soundtrack is just as enthralling, incorporating everything from atmospheric synth whooshes to eerie piano-driven pieces to skittering electronic percussion. While the new score was made with a few more resources than Carpenter's famously shoestring original, it's musical spirit was preserved. "It was great," Carpenter said of the experience. "It was transforming. It was not a movie I directed, so I had a lot of freedom in creating the score and getting into the director's head. I was proud to serve David Gordon Green's vision."
Exploded View, the international music project of Annika Henderson, Hugo Quezada, and Martin Thulin has returned and taken flight with their second full-length, Obey. The album was recorded at Hugo’s and Martin’s studios in Mexico City with Annika visiting from Berlin. Leaving behind their raw, live recording process, and embracing overdubs and multi-instrumentalism, the band has crafted their most ambitious work to date. The four-piece that recorded the band’s self-titled debut album and Summer Came Early EP became three to create a more concise collection of songs. Their motivation for creating together remains purely passionate and the improvisational spark the band is known for has morphed into the emotional flames of being close friends with a deep desire to make music with each other.
Cavegirl Monologue is artist Heather Benjamin's most substantial collection to date. Much of the art in this collection is new and unreleased, but it also contains a selection from her artist's books and foldout zines, including the recent Romantic Story collection that was wildly popular and is now out of print. "Because of my roots in DIY zine and comics culture, visual narratives are important to me, though I tend to pursue them in less traditional and more non-linear ways," Benjamin explains. "I'm interested in the stories that form within a singular image as well as in how the images relate to each other through shared use of iconography and theme." The subjects of her recent art are a logical continuation of the larger narrative of Benjamin's body of work: She works to excavate the female human experience as she knows it. Benjamin muses on intimacy, sexuality, self-perception, body dysmorphia, and trauma through her avatars. Her work is diaristic, approaching her subjects through the lens of her own personal experience; each piece can easily feel like a self-portrait. Her women are simultaneously self-assured and crumbled, standing defiantly on their own two hairy legs, yet seeking the shoulder of an empathetic viewer to cry on. Benjamin uses her art to sort through her own trauma and self-analysis, and seeks to give faces, bodies, and narratives to the different facets of her own womanhood. Through that excavation, she reaches for more universal ideas and truths about the relationships people have to each other and to themselves, hoping to guide herself through the abjections and frustrations of her womanhood toward a greater sense of self-acceptance and actualization.
25 years after its initial release, Julee Cruise's sophomore album The Voice of Love is being issued for the first time on vinyl and returning to print on CD, via Sacred Bones Records.
In 1992, after the release of Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me, David Lynch, Angelo Badalamenti and Julee Cruise returned to the studio with new compositions as well as the intent to craft previously instrumental score-based material from Fire Walk With Me and Wild at Heart into Julee Cruise songs. The result was 1993's final studio album The Voice of Love.
The eighth album from Marissa Nadler, For My Crimes, is the sound of guilt giving way to truth. The songs stare down the dark realization that love may not be enough to keep two people together through distance and differing needs. By asking these difficult questions about her relationships, Nadler has found a stronger sense of self and a sharper voice as both a songwriter and a vocalist, culminating in her most evocative entry in an already impressive discography.
It was 10 years ago, in a house on the outskirts of Santiago, Chile, that Ives Sepulveda Minho and Manuel Parra started playing music together, and The Holydrug Couple was effectively born. A decade later, they've made Hyper Super Mega, an album that represents the culmination of everything they've learned in their years as a band.
If Hyper Super Mega feels like a classic pop record, that’s because Sepulveda and Parra spent much of the recording process thinking about the classic pop records of the '60s and '70s. Masterpieces by bands like The Beatles, The Beach Boys, and Fleetwood Mac were all reference points, not always explicitly in sound, but certainly in spirit. The duo approached the mythos of the "classic album" from their own inimitable psych-pop perspective, hoping to make a record that felt authentically like The Holydrug Couple that could fit into the same canon. By that criterion, Hyper Super Mega is a massive success. All the elements that made the band's previous albums Noctuary and Moonlust great are distilled to their purest essence and rendered in obsessive detail.