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Every Time I Die'
ADAD-EPI-2312xEvery Time I Die
New Junk AestheticEvery Time I Die is a Southern hardcore rock band from Buffalo, New York, founded in the winter of 1998. Across a series of five albums, they have defined a scene, with their unique blend of metalcore, punk and southern rock. Now with their debut album on Epitaph, New Junk Aesthetic, Every Time I Die return to the sound that made earlier albums like Hot Damn fan favorites. We know that our older stuff, which was a lot faster and a lot heavier, definitely made our live shows a lot more fun, because everyone was moving and singing along, says frontman Keith Buckley. We're kinda going back to the way we started.
Produced by Steve Evetts (He Is Legend, A Static Lullaby, Dillinger Escape Plan, Saves the Day, Lifetime, Story of the Year). Features guest vocals by Matt Caughthran of the Bronx and Greg Puciat of Dillinger Escape Plan.1. Roman Holiday
2. The Marvelous Slut
3. Who Invited The Russian Soldier?
5. For The Record
6. White Smoke
7. Turtles All The Way Down
8. Organ Grinder
9. Host Disorder
10. After One Quarter Of A Revolution
11. The Sweet Life$19.99Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
ADAD-EPI-2814xEvery Time I Die
From Parts Unknown
LP Contains CD Of Full Album
Buffalo's magnificently brutal metallic punk ensemble Every Time I Die is set to
unleash From Parts Unknown. The new album was produced by hard
music legend Kurt Ballou, guitarist of Converge, who has helmed recent buzz albums from Kvelertak, Nails, and High On Fire, and offers an unrelenting onslaught
of ingeniously composed and furiously executed cathartic hardcore. This is the
band's highly anticipated follow up to 2012's raging masterwork Ex Lives. From
the syncopated chaos of the opening salvo "The Great Secret" to the melodic mosh
of "Old Light" - as close as ETID have ever come to a radio-friendly unit shifter -
From Parts Unknown sees Every Time I Die pushing the limits of their own sound.1. The Great Secret
2. Pelican Of The Desert
3. Decayin' With The Boys
5. If There Is Room To Move, Things Move
9. Old Light
10. All Structures Are Unstable
11. El Dorado
12. Idiot$19.99Vinyl LP + CD - Sealed Buy Now
ADAD-EPI-5510xEvery Time I Die
Ex LivesEx Lives, The new album from Buffalo, NY's brutal metallic punk ensemble Every Time I Die was produced by renowned producer Joe Barresi (Tool, The Melvins, Queens of the Stone Age) and offers an unrelenting onslaught of ingeniously composed and furiously executed cathartic hardcore. Ex Lives sees Every Time I Die further tempering their aggression while experimenting with new instrumentation.1. Underwater Bimbos From Outer Space
2. Holy Book of Dilemma
3. A Wild, Shameless Plain
4. Typical Miracle
5. I Suck (Blood)
6. Partying Is Such Sweet Sorrow
7. The Low Road Has No Exits
8. Revival Mode
9. Drag King
10. Touch Yourself
11. Indian Giver$19.99Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
REDD-PUR-6146xFour Year Strong
Four Year StrongFour Year Strong have announce their self-titled fifth studio album on Pure Noise Records. The effort was produced by Converge guitarist Kurt Ballou (Every Time I Die, Code Orange Kids, High On Fire) at his Godcity Studio in Salem, MA.
When asked about the album's sound, guitarist/vocalist Dan O'Connor stated that it's "one of the most raw records we've ever made, it's just us playing. No fancy computer shit. Made for singing along and head banging."1. Hold Myself In Contemp
2. We All Float Down Here
3. Eating My Words
4. Wipe Yourself Off, Man. You Dead
5. Stolen Credit Card!
7. Who Cares?
8. Here's to Swimming with Bow Legged- Women
9. I'm a Big, Bright Shining Star
10. The Sound Of Your Heart
11. Go Down In History$19.99Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
REDD-SUN-5817xThe Pleasure Seekers
What A Way To DieThe archetype for the '60s-era girl group was etched indelibly into stone, like a commandment: three pretty girls with matching outfits and bouffant hairdos would sing, with musical backing supplied by a bunch of guys standing in the shadows. The Quatro sisters shattered that archetype forever with the Pleasure Seekers, an all-girl teenage rock & roll group who played all the instruments themselves and were fully capable of wiping the stage with any male band that crossed their path.
The Quatro girls had been brought up in a musically-minded family, nurtured with classical piano and vocal lessons. As Patti recalls, "By 1964, I had been taking guitar lessons, hanging with musicians in the local music scene. We had seen a Beatles concert, and I was quite dazed and focused at the event, watching the audience cry and scream out of control. It was my epiphany moment, and I was determined to start an all-girl band."
Shortly thereafter, the first lineup of the Pleasure Seekers fell into place with Patti Quatro (lead guitar), Marylou Ball (rhythm guitar), Suzi Quatro (bass), Diane Baker (keyboards), Nan Ball (drums) and vocal duties shared by all. Around the fall of 1965 the girls dared local teen club manager Dave Leone to give them a slot at his popular Hideout Club, claiming they were better than most of the other live bands there. "You're on," responded Leone, "in two weeks. Three songs!"
The Pleasure Seekers were soon a popular feature at the club, honing their skills alongside the likes of the Rationals, the Amboy Dukes and Bob Seger & the Last Heard. "In the beginning, there was a lot of skepticism," remembers Patti, "especially the first night. The boys crowded the stage, the girlfriends pulled them away with laughter, as if 'Girls playing?! Yeah, right!' It was always satisfying to see them be silenced quickly when we began playing. We grew used to seeing slack jaws open in surprise." Next they were asked by Leone to record and release a single on his Hideout label.
That March 1966 release is now regarded as the greatest "girl garage" single of the era: "Never Thought You'd Leave Me" b/w "What a Way to Die." "Dave brought lyrics, and we put the songs together quickly," remembers Patti. "We felt very legit in making this record at a small local studio. Nan was the sexy voice on 'Never Thought You'd Leave Me,' and there was lots of laughter as Marylou added the screams on 'What a Way to Die.'" Suzi Quatro remembers the recording as "very important and memorable."
The Pleasure Seekers were soon in demand in the region, playing teen clubs, parties, colleges and local TV shows. After a series of lineup changes, the band brought in older Quatro sister Arlene (keyboards) and Darline Arnone (drums), the first female drummer sponsored by Slingerland Drums. A short time later, Pami Benford joined-up on guitar and bass (that lineup lasting through most of 1968). "It was a very versatile group," remembers Patti, "with Pami and Suzi sharing bass, and Pami and I sharing lead and rhythm guitars."
"The gender bias was my hot button," recalls Arlene, "along with confidence in our musical abilities. With women musicians dismissed as a novelty, I delighted in watching the audience go from skepticism/ridicule, to shock/cheers." For Suzi, though, this period was where she learned her craft: "I considered myself a musician, and didn't really think about gender too much." Two tracks recorded in 1967, but unissued at the time, "Elevator Express" and "Gotta Get Away," highlight the band's growing musical maturity since their Hideout debut. "Detroit was the best learning ground in the world for musicians," recalls Suzi, "with an amazing energy and creativity that is in every successful artist that has come out of the city." "We were actually one of the earliest Detroit bands traveling the country," adds Patti. "Everyone wanted this unusual all girl band who rocked an entire Motown revue (changing instruments and singers throughout) and an entire Sgt. Pepper/Magical Mystery Tour revue, as well as covering English bands, acid rock and everything in between."
Signing up with Associated Booking Corporation, the group began making the transition from local to national act. Producer Dick Corby caught the Pleasure Seekers at Trude Heller's in New York's Greenwich Village and signed them to a Mercury Records deal in early 1968. To keep rein on their finances in NYC, Patti recalls, "We booked Arthur's nightclub for a month, staying at the infamous rock Gorham Hotel, recording by day-playing by night." Also in residence were the Who, the Blues Magoos and an assortment of other bands. "Hitting NYC as young teens, it was exciting, scary, fun-all emotions churning," she continues. "We felt we had hit the big time, going from the tiny local Hideout session to the huge Mercury professional studio facility, complete with session people adding strings and other elements."
A single pairing "Good Kind of Hurt" and "Light of Love" was released in April 1968, while a third song, "Locked in Your Love," remained in the can. The group then headed out to the Northwest for a lengthy tour. "The Northwest tour was awesome," remembers Patti. "We were billed with Canned Heat, Boyce & Hart and Merilee Rush, and were held over six weeks to tour with Eric Burdon and the Animals. The Mercury single was out, momentum was surging." Both sides of the single were getting airplay, but ultimately it failed to gain any traction. "Really neither song reflected our own sound," admits Patti. "We rearranged 'Light of Love' for live performance, feeling disconnected to the record, yet realizing we had to play ball with the executives to keep us rolling."
Ultimately Mercury's vision for the Pleasure Seekers clashed rather sharply with the band's vision. "The suits wanted tits and ass," recalls Darline, "wowing Vegas crowds, playing tinkly tunes in lavish costumes." "In that male-dominated music era, we were strictly a novelty, and a high-risk endeavor," adds Patti. "The record executives felt women musicians would fall in love or get pregnant so were not worth investing the time and money. We had to kick down many doors. We were serious musicians, and in it for the right reasons. In the end, we were not happy with a forced direction that Mercury Records had in mind, and ended up leaving the label to rock our music in our own fashion."
After a memorable 1968 Far East tour, playing for wounded returning American soldiers from Vietnam, the Pleasure Seekers (with new drummer Nancy Rogers) returned to a Detroit that was now, in Patti's words, "exploding with heavier sounds. That sparked us to change direction with new ideas we had been exploring. Arlene left the band and we brought in our youngest sister Nancy (vocals). With Suzi's Joplinesque vocals combined with Nancy's wailing 'female Robert Plant' style, we enjoyed a harder edged, 'double-punch' effect."
The last four songs on the album, "White Pig Blues," "Brain Confusion," "Where Have You Gone?" and the atmospheric psychedelic mover "Mr. Power," all date from this 1968-69 period when the Pleasure Seekers were playing the Grande Ballroom alongside the MC5, Alice Cooper, the Stooges, the Amboy Dukes and SRC. With this change in musical direction and the departure of Arlene and Pami, the band forged on as Cradle. Suzi Quatro departed for England in 1971, launching a successful solo career. Patti and Nancy continued with Cradle until 1973 when Patti joined another pioneering female rock group, Fanny.
The Pleasure Seekers reunited recently in April 2012 (minus Suzi) for a well-received show in their hometown, where they were inducted into Detroit's Hall of Fame. "I think all of us Quatro girls are extremely proud of our pioneering days" reflects Patti. "In a renaissance-era of music, we kicked down doors for women to rock heavy. There were key times in our lives of making decisions that may have turned us towards larger fame, but less happiness-depending on your philosophy of such things. The Pleasure Seekers could have been a Las Vegas show act bringing in buckets of money or on Motown, turned very formulaic girlie-soul. But we stayed true to our goals, and I don't think any of us have any regrets of staying our course and playing the music that moved us. It's all been a thrilling ride with great memories."
- Mike & Anja Stax (Ugly Things magazine)1. Intro By DJ The Lord
2. Gotta Get Away
3. Never Thought You'd Leave Me
4. Light Of Love
5. Good Kind Of Hurt
6. What A Way To Die
7. Elevator Express
8. Locked In Your Love
9. White Pig Blues
10. Brain Confusion
11. Where Have You Gone
12. Mr. Power$24.99Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
Rise Or Die Trying (Awaiting Repress)Worcester, Massachusetts. 8 pm. Those who have their hearts set on a Sunday night bingo game or knitting circle at the Quinsigamond Village Community Center will walk away sorely disappointed. Instead, nearly 600 kids spanning all ages and tastes have excitedly packed themselves into the tiny venue. The room is plunged into darkness and the wild shouting echoes in the air; this is the moment they've been waiting for. The first strains of Michael Jackson's "Thriller" filter through the speakers as Four Year Strong take their hometown stage, fully prepared to shred faces, blow minds, and take no prisoners.
Alan Day (Vocals/Guitar), Dan O'Conner (Vocals/Guitar), Joe Weiss (Bass), Josh Lyford (Synth), and Jake Massucco (Drums) are Four Year Strong. At first, this may not raise eyebrows or drop jaws, but it is only a matter of time. Bringing a unique blend of brutal breakdowns and soaring choruses, Four Year Strong have cut their teeth into the Worcester hardcore scene and thirst for more. Their music incites a riot like nothing seen before, leaving live crowds and CD listeners alike simultaneously blown away, and fired up.
Their influences range from Lifetime to Saves the Day, Gorilla Biscuits to New Found Glory. "We just play exactly what we want to hear," describes Dan, explaining their combination of hardcore and pop-punk. Sharing an average age of 20 years old and with a do-it-yourself determination, Four Year Strong do not pretend to be anyone but themselves. The band does not sugarcoat their image, avoiding the pretty-boy front that smothers the scene. Behind the numerous tattoos and grizzly beards, Four Year Strong are the kind of guys you would want to bring home to Mom and Dad. The band does not bother with egos or attitude, determined to connect with every fan on a personal level.
Their debut full-length, Rise or Die Trying, premieres on I Surrender Records. Already, the album has generated an excited buzz across the web, featured on websites like Absolutepunk.net and FriendsorEnemies.com to print magazines Rolling Stone and Alternative Press. The band has nearly 1 Million plays on Myspace with nothing more than a taste of what Rise or Die Trying will bring. Unrelenting spirit, gut-wrenchingly good music, and no flashy gimmicks, Four Year Strong are building themselves to the top with an indestructible foundation.
Four Year Strong combine equal parts melody and mayhem; however, their true talent lies in the ability to use these parts to create one exciting, infectious whole. "We wanted to put out a great record and not just a bunch of great songs." They fully embrace their album title, Rise or Die Trying, and Four Year Strong refuse to stop until they've taken the world by storm.
Brace yourself, let's start the takeover.1. The Takeover
2. Prepare To Be Digitally Manipulated
3. Abandon Ship Or Abandon All Hope
4. Heroes Get Remembered, Legends Never Die
5. Wrecked 'Em? Damn Near Killed 'EM
7. Men Are From Mars, Women Are From Hell
8. Bada Bing! Wit' A Pipe!
9. Beatdown In The Key Of Happy
10. If He's Here, Who's Running Hell?
11. MANIAC (R.O.D.)$14.99Vinyl LP - Sealed AWAITING REPRESS Buy Now
I Got Dem Ol' Kozmic Blues Again Mama! (Speakers Corner)
When Janis Joplin died in October 1970 at the early age of 27, thus involuntarily confirming the beatnik adage live fast, love hard, die young, it was only a matter of time before she was crowned the "Queen of Rock". Of greater importance than this posthumous entry into rock 'n' roll's hall of fame is the recognition during her lifetime of her explosive vocal style, which - so Vogue - turned the whole history of singing upside down.
Janis Joplin's discography is just as short and changeable as her life. After two LP releases with the standard 'cast' of rock musicians in the band Big Brother And The Holding Company, with whose excellent musical support she obtained her first recording contract with Columbia Records in 1968, the company provided her with a group augmented with organ and winds. Their intention was to broaden her vocal expression with blues and funk elements, which, however, her most loyal fans regarded as betrayal of the ideals of rock music. Rock fans in the Old World were less critical, especially since Joplin and her Kozmic Blues Band went on a two-month tour of Europe. For those Woodstock fans whose ears are still ringing with the band's full, meaty wind sound and Janis's bluesy soul singing, this album is an absolute must.
- Janis Joplin (vocal)
- Cornelius Snooky Flowers, Terry Clements (saxophone)
- Luis Gasca (trumpet)
- Richard Kermode, Gabriel Mekler (organ)
- Sam Andrew (guitar)
- Brad Campbell (bass)
- Maury Baker, Lonnie Castille (drums)
Recording: June - August 1969 by Sy Mitchell, Jerry Hochman, and Alex Kazanegras
Production: Gabriel Mekler
About Speakers Corner
At the beginning of the 90s, in the early days of audiophile vinyl re-releases, the situation was fairly straightforward. Companies such as DCC, Mobile Fidelity, Classic Records and, of course, Speakers Corner all maintained a mutual, unwritten ethical code: we would only use analogue tapes to manufacture records.
During the course of the present vinyl hype, many others have jumped on the bandwagon in the hope of securing a corner of the market. Very often they are not so ethical and use every imaginable source to master from: CDs, LPs, digital files, MP3s - or employed existant tools from the 80s and 90s for manufacturing.
A digital delay is gladly used when cutting a lacquer disc because tape machines with an analogue delay have become quite rare and are therefore expensive. When cutting the lacquer, the audio signal is delayed by one LP revolution against the signal, which controls the cutter head, and for this a digital delay is very often employed. Of course, the resultant sound signal is completely digital and thus only as good as this delay.
We should like to emphasise that Speakers Corner Records on principle only uses the original master tape as the basis for the entirely analogue cutting of lacquer discs. In addition, the pressing tool is newly manufactured as a matter of principle. We have one digital recording in our catalogue (Alan Parsons / Eye In The Sky"), but even in this particular case we used the analogue tapes for cutting.
We only employ existing tools for manufacturing if an improved result is not forthcoming, e.g. the title Elvis Is Back, which was mastered by Steve Hoffman and Kevin Gray, or several titles from our Philips Classics series, which in any case Willem Makkee cut from the original masters at the Emil Berliner Studios in the 90s. It goes without saying that we only used the mother and that new tools were made for our production.
To put it in a nutshell: we can ensure you that our releases are free from any kind of digital effects - excluding the exception above - and that the lacquer discs are newly cut.1. Try (Just a Little Bit Harder)
3. One Good Man
4. As Good As You've Been to This World
5. To Love Somebody
6. Kozmic Blues
7. Little Girl Blue
8. Work Me Lord$34.99180 Gram Audiophile Virgin Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
The Home Inside My HeadAs one of the pioneers of the new wave of pop-punk-emo, Chicagoland quintet Real Friends have rapidly and
organically grown a global following of devotees. Produced by Steve Evetts (The Wonder Years, Every Time I Die)
their second full-length sees the band taking their sound to the next level.1. Stay In One Place
2. Empty Picture Frames
3. Keep Lying To Me
4. Scared To Be Alone
5. Mokena, 6.Mess
6. Isolating Everything
7. Well, I'm Sorry
8. Basement Stairs
9. Door Without A Key
11. Colder Quicker$18.99Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
Spit And ArgueProsthetic Records is proud to announce the signing of Long Beach, CA-based miscreants, The Greenery. The band, whose brand of snotty, metallic hardcore punk rock has drawn comparisons to Every Time I Die, The Bronx, Discharge and the Stitches, are recording their full-length debut at BuzzBomb Stuio in Orange, CA with Paul Minor.
Since Forming in 2007, the band has toured the entire U.S. several times and has countless regional runs under their belt. In April of 2011, The Greenery participated in the Road to Metal Fest Tour, along with Lionheart, Legend, The Great Commission and Monsters. The tour routed them through the Jamboree Fest in Toledo, OH and ended at New England Metal and Hardcore Festival in Worcester, MA. The Greenery embody everything that is true to the DIY spirit, and that spirit oozes from every track on Spit and Argue.No Listing Available.$15.99Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
Avalanche United"This band has a nervous energy, an urgency that each of us feel every second of our lives, and this album captures that. We're brothers, we're family. The music we make together binds us together and gets us through all the hard times, together. I feel like all five of us will be able walk with less weight on our shoulders now that we've finished this album after years of writing and recording. And now it's time to perform these songs everywhere, alongside some of my best friends." - Vinnie Caruana
AVALANCHE UNITED is the album I Am the Avalanche and their fans have been waiting on for over six years. The title "AVALANCHE UNITED" also embodies the resilient spirit of this band, and their deep bonds with their families, friends and fans who have supported and sustained I Am The Avalanche through thick and thin.
Vinnie Caruana (vocals), Brandon Swanson (guitar), Michael Ireland (guitar), Brett "The Ratt" Romnes (drums) and Kellen Robson (bass) formed I Am the Avalanche in the fall of 2004 and quickly released their debut self-titled album in 2005. Over the course of the next two years IATA toured the world relentlessly in support of this album, which quickly became a cult favorite among fans and the band's peers. Prior to forming IATA, Caruana had fronted the beloved and influential band The Movielife. His popularity as one of the most respected singers in the punk rock community helped the word spread quickly about his new band's incredible live shows. Before long IATA had established their own intensely dedicated following around the globe.
In 2006, IATA began writing and demoing new music for their follow-up album, and while the band continued to play rare performances and tour briefly over the next several years, they also came to the realization that they wanted and needed to return to their DIY roots and start anew. Self-managed, self-booked and almost completely on their own at that stage, the members of IATA became laser-focused on writing the best album of their careers.
Thus, six years after the release of their debut album, IATA returned to the studio to record their second: AVALANCHE UNITED. Set for release on I Surrender Records, and produced by the band, and executive produced and engineered by their prolific drummer Brett "The Ratt" Romnes and mixed by Machine (Fall Out Boy, Every Time I Die, Four Year Strong), AVALANCHE UNITED is addictively melodic and blisteringly raw to its very core. Featuring 12 anthemic songs and absolutely zero filler, the album includes "Brooklyn Dodgers," the defiant "Holy Fuck", the epic and somber "Dead Friends" and "The Gravedigger's Argument," featuring Anthony Raneri from Bayside. Throughout, Caruana's distinctive voice drips with defiance, humor and proud vulnerability as he sings about hope, heartbreak, death, defying adversity and the bonds between family, lovers and friends.
And just seconds into first listening to AVALANCHE UNITED, it'll be immediately clear that I Am the Avalanche are back with one of punk's most powerful albums in years, unbroken and unbowed.1. Holy Fuck
2. Brooklyn Dodgers
4. I'll Be Back Around
5. Is This Really Happening?
6. This One's On Me
7. Dead Friends
8. You've Got Spiders
9. The Gravedigger's Argument
10. Casey's Song
11. The Place You Love Is Gone
12. Gratitude$14.99Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
$27.99 $22.11 Save $5.88 (21%)
Is Forever No Way (On Sale)Hope I Die Virgin have, with their chaste and low key mix of rainy British indie and Dischord sound, been a cult band reserved for a few seeking souls. Two self released EP's, the most recent produced by Emil Nikolaisen of Serena Maneesh, received nods of approval from besserwissers. Still the band with the strange name have been walking by themselves in the murky mud on the banks of Oslo's underground, barely visible for the past two years.
Hope I Die Virgin let the world be and created an alternate reality in Harrys Gym studio through innumerable sessions in 2009 and 2010. Is Forever No Way was from the beginning a megalomaniac project, a fantasy of a record so extensive, so deep and discomposing that the world had never heard anything like it. The more time the band spent in the studio, the more self-exhausting their ambitions became. Every bass note, every last beating of the cymbals have been subjected to infinite interpretation and association processes. Every chord shift has been analysed with astrological and scientifical intent.1. Intro
2. Panther Streams
3. Acid Lake
4. Anders Giæver (Interstellar Duke)
6. Wolf Head Dress
7. (Soon) Into Heavens
8. No Dwelling
9. At Crude Garbage Falls$27.99 $22.11 Save $5.88 (21%)Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
Feel The NoiseYeah, it's a concept man. Rock n' roll... remember that? Well I do, like it was yesterday. Standing on the corner of Hollywood & Vine in LA or on Columbus & Broadway in front of Aquarius Records in North Beach San Francisco circa 1975... Thinking that all I wanted to do is rock out, so sick of everything I was hearing on the radio, all those bands seemed to suck to me, I couldn't understand what happened to the real rock n roll that I grew up on. Where did it go ? Where were the balls? Where were the guts? Where were the songs that blew my mind, the guitar licks, the harmonies... what happened? For too many years after that all I heard was the same old thing... "rock n roll is dead". Every time I heard it, it made me mad, it made me think... yeah... FUCK YOU! Then I heard the Ramones, and things got better for a while, and then it got bad again. Then I heard Nirvana and things got better again for a while, then they got bad again, but at that point I didn't really care anymore because I knew that Rock N Roll was never gonna die... you know why? Because there will always be a new generation of kids who will dig this shit as much as I do... Feel The Noise! Remember kids, the future is in your hands! Keep on Rocking!
Paul Collins1. Feel The Noise
2. Only Girl
3. Baby I Want You
4. I Need My Rock 'n' Roll
5. Don't Know How to Treat A Lady
6. With A Girl Like You
7. For All Eyes To See
8. Little Suzy
9. Can't Get You Off My Mind
10. Baby I'm In Love With You
11. Reach Out I'll Be There
12. Walk Away$18.99Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
Indoor LivingWith a lot of Superchunk products, it's easy to think there's a simple message because
the music is so direct. But on Indoor Living, typically unfussy guitar hooks and
shout-sung tag lines that beg for an audience to croon along-"Let's burn last
Sunday"-are just the overarching structure of a record that moons over details:
"Marquee" drapes a lazy sonic arm over the seat, pulling you in for a story about egos
twisting apart ("The arc of lights / above your head / is not to be believed").
"Martinis on the Roof " puts a slightly manic, rueful smile on the loss of a friend, a
search for that emotion that lurks in a mix of anger and nostalgia: "Well the wasted
space is mine / Yeah I hardly have the right to sing about it."
Indoor Living is about domestication: The taming and training of human beings to inhabit each others' lives, during which a certain amount of blood is spilled. But anyone
can write a break-up record, anyone can color in a broken heart all black. It takes a
more sophisticated eye to find the light and perfect moments that happen even when
we wish they didn't, and Indoor Living is a scrapbook of those moments. A request
for mercy comes across like an in-joke ("We both know that I've got bad knees") in
"Watery Hands." "European Medicine" is a lively travelog that's by turns amusingly
fatalistic ("All our wine just froze, so much for your sunny coast") and achingly needy
("Hold my hand steady while I write / Look over my shoulder all night"). Even "The
Popular Music," the record's angriest slice of heartache, has a protagonist that can't
quite pull off a fully punk rock tantrum: "I'm smashing not washing the china you left
me to use," but "making mosaics of scenes from the parts of my life that you left me
Angst is easy, hope is hard. Thinking you're going to die from a broken heart is easy,
knowing you won't is hard. Adulthood is about forsaking the black and white
resolutions of youth for a more complicated, and resonant, resilience: From "Burn
Last Sunday," one of the saddest lines in indie rock: "The branches you thought you'd
break / Well, they just bend." In music and with people, maturity happens when the
sharp edges and jangly rhythms of angst and outrage give over to fuller conversations.
Indoor Living shows that you don't have to lose a single joule of energy in becoming a
little more self-reflective. You just have to be willing to take it all in.
Trying to hear Indoor Living the way I heard it sixteen years ago was easier than I
wanted it to be. Though of course-of course!-I've listened to the record on and
off in the intervening time, I had forgotten how familiar this record is to me. I had
forgotten I knew all the words to every song, could anticipate every hesitant drop in
rhythm and wavering chorus. This record was the soundtrack of being 25 and because
of that, it does remind me of a really specific time; but that time is not so much the
late '90s as the turning point between adolescence and adulthood, which happens later
and later to me every year.
-Ana Marie Cox, 20131. Unbelievable Things
2. Burn Last Sunday
4. Watery Hands
5. Nu Bruises
6. Every Single Instinct
7. Song for Marion Brown
8. The Popular Music
9. Under Our Feet
10. European Medicine
11. Martinis on the Roof$21.99180 Gram Audiophile Virgin Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
El RioIt's been one helluva ride to get here, from Nashville to El Paso and back again, but Frankie Ballard's new Warner Bros. Records/Warner Music Nashville album El Rio is finally being released. With growing anticipation, Ballard is especially excited to hear fans' reactions to some of the new music that no one has heard.
Ballard has been playing new songs like "It All Started with a Beer" and "Cigarette" from his third LP live, but not every song has made it into the set. "Good as Gold," co-written by Mando Saenz and Justin Bogart, is a track he's especially proud of that fans haven't had a chance to listen to yet.
"'Good as Gold' is the heart of this record," Ballard said. "Everybody asks, 'What's your favorite song?' I can't pick my favorite, but doggone it 'Good as Gold' is really close to the top. The spirit of this song, the courage in this song is what made me fall in love with it the first time I ever heard it. It's about telling a girl everything you need to tell her all in one moment and not holding anything back. The courage in that inspired me and I hope it inspires other people. It's one of the songs that I'm most excited to see what people think of it, on social media or at shows, or wherever I can talk to people about this album. I'm dying to get feedback. So go listen to the song if you haven't and tell me what you think."
Love and lust play a huge role in El Rio, alternating between tender tracks like "Good as Gold" and "It All Started with a Beer" to more experiential songs like "Cigarette" and "LA Woman," another new song Ballard is excited to unveil.
"This is one that I love to play for people because it's a rockin' song," Ballard said. "Every woman I think has a little bit of an LA side and I think every man has a side of him that wants an LA woman."1. El Camino
3. Waste Some Of Mine
4. Little Bit Of Both
5. L.A. Woman
6. It All Started With A Beer
7. Sweet Time
8. Good As Gold
9. Southern Side
10. You'll Accomp'ny Me
11. You Could've Loved Me$19.99Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
The Oath (Awaiting Repress)To master the dark and wring compelling creativity from its densest shadows requires vision, belief and, perhaps most importantly, a dash of synchronicity. These are all qualities that ooze from every pore of the debut album by The Oath. A band forged around the fizzing, feral chemistry between Swedish guitarist Linnea Olsson and German vocalist Johanna Sadonis, The Oath represent the wild magic that erupts when two blazing souls collide and fate is sent veering off course by sheer strength of the human will. This is heavy metal at its most mercurial and intuitive.
"I had grown tired with the metal scene in Stockholm, and I wanted to experience something new and get out of my comfort zone," Linnea Olson recalls. "This resulted in me going to Berlin, a city where I had no friends, and just exploring everything that makes it so magical the creative energy, the sense of freedom, and the notoriously dark and debauched nightlife. I played my guitar as usual at home, and riffs started to pile up. By the time summer came, I felt the time was right to start a new band. My best friend Henke put me in touch with Johanna. On her end, she had been looking for a guitarist for a band that she wanted to call The Oath. We had an instant connection. And we looked almost identical."
Having found each other and discovered that their obsessions, desires and musical urges were utterly compatible and swiftly and irrevocably interwoven, Linnea and Johanna set about devising an artistic masterplan. The results of that plan are now primed to emerge, fully-formed and thrumming with primal energy and pristine passion, in the shape of The Oath: a nine-song clarion call that simultaneously recalls the hallowed greats of heavy rock, punk and metal - from Sabbath, Trouble and Angel Witch through to the Stooges and Poison Idea, and further to Mercyful Fate and Danzig - while revelling in new ways to express the spirit of those revered archetypes. Recorded in ten days at Studio Cobra in Stockholm with producer Konie Ehrencrona at the controls and the raging rhythm section of Simon Bouteloup (bass, Kadavar/ex-Aqua Nebula Oscillator) and Andrew Prestidge (Angel Witch/Winters) underpinning Linnea and Johanna's otherworldly hymns to the black, The Oath is a triumph for soul and sonic ceremony, with conviction and integrity bursting from every artfully-crafted riff and ethereal melodic motif.
"We had a die-hard dedication right from the beginning - if not, what's the point?" states Linnea. "As for the master plan, there was none. If things fall into place naturally, you don't need one. We felt that this was our shot, and we needed to go for it. We wanted this album to be primitive and minimalistic in the sense that the sound is fairly raw, and we kept overdubs to a minimal - most of what you hear on the album are live takes. But we also wanted to bring out the melody and richness that is within the songs. And these are all strong songs, which is very important to us."
Veering from the strident grooves and shimmering menace of opener All Must Die to the breakneck, Luciferian clatter of Black Rainbow and on to the spine-tingling grandeur and grime of epic closer Psalm 7, The Oath is anything but just another addition to the modern pseudo-occult rock canon. Instead, it is an extraordinary glimpse into its creators' overpowering charisma and chemistry and a thrillingly, hyper-nourishing dose of authentic, 21st century heavy metal sorcery. With input from In Solitude's Henke Palm - who contributes some "improvised Voivod-style solos", according to Linnea - and logo designed courtesy of Watain's Erik Danielson, this is an album that exudes ageless style and irresistible substance: a potent antidote to the flimsy fripperies of the modern age.
"This album represents Johanna and me and our dedication to our music," Linnea avows. "Everything about this band is about me and her - our relationship to each other, our differences as people and musicians, and the unity that we are in The Oath. She possesses strengths that I lack and the other way around. Musically, my riffs are the dirt and her vocals, the diamonds. I have a friend who cleverly put that the world is made up by two kinds of people: the werewolves and the vampires. By that standard, I am a werewolf and Johanna is a vampire. You can interpret that as you like."
And now, this new ritual begins. The Oath has been sworn, the dice have been thrown. All that remains is the propagation of the divine but unholy art that these sisters-in-sound have wrenched from the depths of their harmonised psyches. The future belongs to those who believe
"There are a lot of hopes, plans and ambitions," Linnea concludes. "But what's even more important is that there is only now and that now is forever."
- Dom Lawson, January 20141. All Must Die
2. Silk Road
3. Night Child
4. Leaving Together
5. Black Rainbow
6. Silver and Dust
7. Death Delight
8. In Dream
9. Psalm 7$16.99Vinyl LP - Sealed AWAITING REPRESS Buy Now
AmeriKKKa's Most Wanted (Remastered) (Awaiting Repress)Remastered
When Ice Cube split from N.W.A after the group's seminal Straight Outta Compton album changed the world forever, expectations were high, too high to ever be met by anyone but the most talented of artists, and at his most inspired. At the time Cube was just that. With AmeriKKKa's Most Wanted the rapper expanded upon Compton, making a more full-bodied album that helped boost the role of the individual in hip-hop.
Save the dramatic intro where a mythical Ice Cube is fried in the electric chair, his debut is filled with eye-level views of the inner city that are always vivid, generally frightening, generally personal, and sometimes humorous in the gallows style. Ripping it quickly over a loop from George Clinton's Atomic Dog, Cube asks the question that would be central to his early career, Why there more niggas in the pen than in college?, while sticking with the mutual distrust and scare tactics N.W.A used to wipe away any hopes of reconciliation (They all scared of the Ice Cube/And what I say what I portray and all that/And ain't even seen the gat). What I'm kicking to you won't get rotation/Nowhere in the nation he spits on the classic Turn Off the Radio, which when coupled with the intoxicating Bomb Squad production and Cube's cocksure delivery that's just below a shout, makes one think he's the only radio the inner city needs.
The Bomb Squad's amazing work on the album proves they've been overly associated with Public Enemy, since their ability to adapt to AmeriKKKa's more violent and quick revolution is underappreciated. Their high point is the intense Endangered Species, a live by the trigger song that offers It's a shame, that niggas die young/But to the light side it don't matter none. This street knowledge venom with ultra fast funk works splendidly throughout the album, with every track hitting home, although the joyless You Can't Fade Me has alienated many a listener since kicking a possibly pregnant woman in the stomach is a very hard one to take. Just to be as confusing as the world he lives in, the supposedly misogynistic Cube introduces female protÉgÉ Yo-Yo with It's a Man's World before exiting with The Bomb, a perfectly unforgiving and visceral closer.
Save a couple Arsenio Hall disses, AmeriKKKa's Most Wanted is a timeless, riveting exercise in anger, honesty, and the sociopolitical possibilities of hip-hop.
- David Jeffries (All Music Guide)1. Better off Dead
2. The Nigga Ya Love to Hate
3. AmeriKKKa's Most Wanted
4. What They Hittin' Foe?
5. You Can't Fade Me/JD's Gaffilin'
6. Once Upon a Time in the Projects
7. Turn Off the Radio
8. Endangered Species (Tales From the Darkside)
9. A Gangsta's Fairytale
10. I'm Only Out for One Thang
11. Get off My *** and Tell Yo ***** to Come Here
12. The Drive-By
13. Rollin' Wit the Lench Mob
14. Who's the Mack?
15. It's a Man's World
16. The Bomb$24.99Vinyl LP - Sealed AWAITING REPRESS Buy Now
$19.99 $15.79 Save $4.20 (21%)
Connect (On Sale)Sick Puppies is a three piece rock band that formed in Australia in the late 1990s. The current lineup for the band is Shimon Moore on guitar, Emma Anzai on bass and Mark Goodwin on drums. In the early 2000s the band, which at the time did not include Mark, moved to the states to start their career as a professional rock band. They were signed to Virgin Records and released their second album, Dressed Up As Life which has sold over 200,000 copies in the United States and abroad since it's release in 2007. The band furthered their career and released their third full length album Tri-Polar in 2009 which featured hits such as, You're Going Down, Riptide, Maybe and Odd One.
Connect is an album that takes all types of Sick Puppies sound and combines it all into one. You have hints of Welcome To the Real World, Dressed Up As Life and Tri-Polar in the album. You have the hard rock and heavy bass songs such as, Die To Save You, There's No Going Back, Walk Away, Gunfight and The Trick The Devil Did; and you have the ballads, Poison, Where Did The Time Go, Telling Lies, Connect, Run, Healing Now and Under A Very Black Sky. The album comes together really well and isn't the bad kind of overpowering. Fans, if you've been anxiously awaiting this album to see if it's good; I'm here to tell you that this album is very good and worth the wait.
My Favorite Song Is... There's No Going Back. The song starts right off the bat with a very rhythmic acoustic guitar. The chorus then comes in and hits you with very strong lyrics. There's no going back / when life's a loaded gun / you pull the trigger, trigger / There's no going back / the past is in the past / thank God it doesn't last forever /. The use of Emma as a backup vocalist has always been something I wanted the band to do in every song, and this song, her small presence gives it such a bigger presence on the album. There's No Going Back is also the band's first single off the album.
- aNewRisingDesign1. Die to Save You
2. There's No Going Back
3. Walking Away
6. Where Did the Time Go
7. Telling Lies
10. The Trick the Devil Did
11. Healing Now
12. Under a Very Black Sky$19.99 $15.79 Save $4.20 (21%)Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
Kiss: MTV UnpluggedCelebrating four decades of decibels, KISS, Mercury Records and UMe proudly announce reissuing the legendary KISS albums on 180g audiophile vinyl
starting in 2014. Remastered to high definition 192kHz/24-bit audio for maximum fidelity, these albums have never sounded so amazing and now
vinyl collectors will get what they've been demanding. All posters, sleeve art, stickers, etc that appeared in the original LP release where applicable have
been faithfully reproduced for the KISS Army.
On April 10, KISS will be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame - which will be broadcast in May -
and then will kick off a summer co-headlining tour with Def Leppard starting in June.
After sinking deep into this musical celebration, even the not-so-avid listener will surely know something more about Kiss, a classic rock icon of the '70s roaring back in vibrant and passionate form. This recording of a session done expressly for the program MTV Unplugged in 1996 brought together a special group for a remarkable, if unexpected, reunion. Throughout this record, you can feel the support and raw adoration of the audience present, certainly a mixture of long-time fans and new admirers. The members of Kiss got together to rock hard on their axes and crash big on the drums, bringing a renewed sense of freshness and excitement. Nearly rock & roll legends, they exceeded expectations and, given their newfound energy, charisma, and love for the music, their performance provided the catalyst for the beginning of a successful world reunion tour. Coming Home delivers a feverish and electric opening that gets the crowd on its feet in a hurry. Soon the emotion and presence of this group are brought back with startling grace and wisdom on Plaster Caster, and the beautiful acoustic medley Goin' Blind. The decades of Kiss, their costumes, and their wild stadium shows roll back in a heartbeat through the crashing tune Do You Love Me. Perhaps one of the most bewildering tunes that really reflects the image of Kiss is the rocking blues tune Domino. The crowd is really fired up now, next experiencing the charming and soulful power rock ballad Sure Know Something. A World Without Heroes is very subdued and reflective. Rock Bottom is delicate and mysterious in the opening seconds, with a lush minor harmony delivered picking style on the acoustic. Now it gets rough, expresses Stanley, grooving in a racy blues statement. See You Tonight is a romantic and pretty ballad delivered with sweetness, and the group sings, I'll see you tonight/And if I can't, I'll cry, I'll cry/I see you tonight, outside. Then on comes the darker resonance of the band with I Still Love You, expressing grave longing after a grueling breakup. I got to make you see, is a gripping line in a haunting bridge section, before the shouted, emotional, sometimes painful chorus: Girl, it seems the price I have of losing you/Will be my hell to pay/It makes me want to die/'Cause I still love you. The solo during the bridge is reminiscent of the chord structure of the Guess Who's Undun. After this painful, depressing song, new breath is found with Every Time I Look at You, a song of forgiveness, delivered with sincerity and the feeling of hope: Every time I hold you/The things I never told you seem to come easily/'Cause you're everything to me. The bridge is brilliant and seems to elevate the melody to a gratifying level, before breaking into a chilling guitar improv, layered over with a shimmering string orchestra. Beth is the most heartwarming song of Kiss' power ballads: Beth I know you're lonely/And I hope you'll be alright/'Cause me and the boys will be playing all night. Finally, a Kiss show wouldn't be complete without the ultimate party song, Rock and Roll All Night, a tune still electric without electric guitars.
- Shawn M. Haney (All Music Guide)LP 1
1. Comin' Home
2. Plaster Caster
3. Goin' Blind
4. Do You Love Me
6. Sure Know Something
7. A World Without Heroes
8. Rock Bottom
1. See You Tonight
2. I Still Love You
3. Every Time I Look At You
4. 2,000 Man
6. Nothin' To Lose
7. Rock 'N' Roll All Nite
8. Got To Choose$34.99180 Gram Audiophile Virgin Vinyl LP - 2 LPs Sealed Buy Now
I'm Not The DevilCody Jinks was raised on country music but he cut his teeth on metal. "Metallica was king. They set the tone for me and I spent a good part of my youth wanting to be James Hetfield." After a dedicated stint as a frontman in a thrash metal band, Jinks willingly found himself back to where it all began. "My dad loved the outlaw country icons, Johnny Cash, Waylon Jennings and Merle Haggard. That never ending consistency of incredible music growing up laid some very deep seeds. I'm mean, come on nothing better than mentally diving into 'The Hag' and metal when it comes time for me to write songs."
Always avoiding trends and ferociously choosing his direction was the only option from day one, even though that very path could have prevented success. "What is success if you can't wake up everyday being who you really are. In the end, that will catch up with you." Jinks has been tested countless times by his career choices. The better part of the last 15 years have included numerous empty bar rooms and a never ending financial loss. "Yeah, I've been pretty good at losing money. Not the greatest feeling in the world to be gone from home for long stretches of time, only to walk in the door broke. Luckily I've got a damn good woman in my life. She has stood by me with unmeasurable strength to say the least and it is an absolute fact that I seriously overplayed my hand when landing her."
His long, dark beard and endless array of tattoos are no fad. They unquestionably define Cody Jinks. His prototypical metal/hard rock band frontman look is not a well orchestrated image, but again, define Cody Jinks. Diving into to his album, I'm Not the Devil is the perpetual truth of who he is and where he has found himself at this point in his career. "I'm just glad that I ended up where I am now," Jinks said. "It makes complete sense that I'm at this place in my life. Country music found me when I was young and chased me down as I grew older"
Jinks' latest project is his deepest, darkest and most provocative album to date, with a metal common denominator, the apocalypse, running throughout the record. "It's a pretty scary time," Jinks said. "There are some evil people running things in the world. It hits me since I have a six and three-year old."
There's not a weightier song than the aptly titled "Heavy Load." It's the most apocalyptic song on the album but the dense cut, with a pretty violin break, is a gorgeous tune. The vocal hook grabs ears when Jinks croons "Train Jumps Tracks Some Time Ago/You Can't Root That Heavy Load." "That was the last song I wrote on the record," Jinks said. "I couldn't be happier how that one turned out."
"All You Can" features a pretty piano line and sobering wordplay. When Jinks belts out 'What Are You Living For," you can't help but think about the serious question posed in what is becoming an increasingly shallow existence. "I was really tired when I wrote that song," Jinks said. "We had been on the road for awhile. The bottom line is that if you're not helping people, you're not doing your job as a human being. It's time to quit feeling sorry for yourself and do something."
One of Jinks' favorite songs on the album is "The Way I Am," a cover of a Merle Haggard classic. "I love that song," Jinks says. "I wrapped it up just before Merle died. The song always resonated with me. I relate to that one since there are times I would rather be out fishing."
"No Words" is a stunner of a gritty, autobiographical love song, which is a throwback to how songs used to be written. It is a tuneful gem, inspired by reality. Jinks starts out dark as night. "My Whole View of the World has Changed/ I Guess that Comes with Age/I Don't Believe there is Good in Every Man Like I Did Back Then/I May Drink More Than I Should/You've Seen Me on the Floor/I Spent my Lifetime in this Cage I Built Around Me." But the song is actually a tip of the hat to his beloved wife of 19 years. "There Aint' No Words/ To Say How Much I Need You/With You Here/ You Make This Life I Lead Worth Living." "It's about my wife," Jinks says. "But the funny thing is that she doesn't like it. She thinks it sounds too sad."
With the title track "I'm Not the Devil," Jinks wakes us all up to the realities of mistakes and the heartfelt desire to be forgiven. "We are all guilty of mistakes and very guilty of pointing out the mistakes of others. Forgiveness feels so much better or so I think."
It's impressive how Jinks is getting his message across. Jinks utilizes space well in his songs. Notes aren't crammed in. Jinks lets his songs breathe. "After all I've experienced, I think I've matured," Jinks says. "I think you can hear it in the music. I've grown up."
Even though he still looks the part of the headbanger he was back in the day, he has moved on. "It's all for the best, Jinks says. "I'm where I was meant to be."
It's all about the music and the fans, who are the fuel that drives Jinks. "They come out night after night giving up hard earned money and precious time to see me play," Jinks says. " It's truly is amazing when you really think about it. The best way I can say thanks is by giving back with effort and gratitude."1. The Same
2. I'm Not the Devil
3. No Guarantees
4. No Words
5. Give All You Can
6. She's All Mine
7. The Way I Am
8. Chase That Song
9. Heavy Load
11. Church at Gaylor Creek
13. Hand Me Down$24.99Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
New Gold Dream (Half-Speed Master)HALF-SPEED MASTER : 2016 reissue of 1982 album, mastered at Abbey Road Studios from the original tapes & pressed on 180-gram audiophile quality vinyl!
New Gold Dream is the fifth album by the celebrated Caledonian rockers. Released in 1982, it is widely considered to be a turning point for the band, a bridge between their post punk roots and stadium-filling destiny, and gathered enormous critical acclaim as well as impressive sales. Listed in the estimable tome '1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die' New Gold Dream was a discernible move toward a more a commercial sound and it entered the UK chart at number 3, yielding the hit singles Promised You a Miracle and Glittering Prize.
The latter track and the synth-heavy Someone Somewhere in Summertime in particular represented a shift towards undisguised pop and it's also worth noting that Hunter and Hunted features a solo by Jazz keyboardist Herbie Hancock, a rare distinction for any rock/pop album.
Every band or artist with a history has an album that's their holy grail, remarked lead singer Jim Kerr. I suppose New Gold Dream was ours. It was a special time because we were really beginning to break through with that record, both commercially and critically. The people that liked that record connected with it in a special way. There was a depth to it: it created its own mythology. It stood out."
also worth noting that Hunter and Hunted features a solo by Jazz keyboardist Herbie Hancock, a rare distinction for any rock/pop album.
The artwork caused quite stir due to its religious imagery, so much so that on the version released in Yugoslavia, the cross was removed. Jim Kerr reflected [During the writing of the album] we often went for walks. Around Perth you find a lot of Celtic crosses, crosses that seem to spring up from the earth. We thought it was a very powerful symbol. They were in the ground which produced the water we drank, so why not?1. Someone Somewhere in Summertime
2. Colours Fly and Catherine Wheel Voice
3. Promised You a Miracle Drums
4. Big Sleep
5. Somebody Up There Likes You
6. New Gold Dream (81-82-83-84)
7. Glittering Prize
8. Hunter and the Hunted Keyboards
9. King Is White and in the Crowd$44.99180 Gram Audiophile Virgin Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
Songs In A&EWho would have thought that Jason Pierce's Spiritualized would have had any life in them after the rather uninspiring Amazing Grace in 2003? In the intervening five years, Pierce nearly died from double pneumonia. Near death experiences by their very nature are life-changing events. The music on Songs in A&E were recorded in that aftermath, but most of the album was written two years before he got sick; with so much of it about near death and survival, it feels like life imitating art. From the first notes of Sweet Talk, it's obvious that a very different Spiritualized is up and about; an acoustic guitar, a sparse drum kit, the voice quartet, a few horns, and a minimal bassline fuel it. Pierce sweetly croons to a loved one in waltz time; his words are
simultaneously appeasing and accusatory. The gospel chorus isn't as overblown as it was on Amazing Grace or Let It Come Down. They are in a support role, offering Pierce's reedy voice a fullness and authority it wouldn't have otherwise. The arrangement is lilting but powerful. How strange, then, the sounds of a ventilator that usher in the next track Death Take Your Fiddle: I think I'll drink myself into a coma/And I'll take every way out I can find/But morphine, codeine, Whisky, they won't alter/The way I feel/Now death is not around...Death take your fiddle/And play a song for me. Minor-key acoustic
guitar and ghostly bass frame Pierce singing a mutant folk-blues that evokes Gary Davis' Death Don't Have No Mercy. The backing vocals float
wordlessly like death angels, hovering around the vocalist and giving the tune an otherworldly quality.
But this isn't a song about dying; it's a song about coming close and cheating it; it's eerie. The proof? The next two tracks: I Gotta Fire, and Soul on
Fire. The former is a taut, Gimme Shelter-esque rocker, the latter, a lush, uptempo love song. Sitting on Fire is a beautifully orchestrated love song:
it's an admission of weakness and codependency but celebrates both of them at the same time: Baby, I'm sitting on fire/but the flames put a hole in my
heart/when we're together we stand so tall/But a part of me falls to the floor/Sets me free /I do believe it'll burn up in me for the rest of my life. Strings,
vibes, marimbas, and drums crash in to the center of the mix carrying the protagonist into oblivion. Yeah, Yeah is a scorching rocker that feels like the
Bad Seeds meeting the old Spacemen 3. You Lie You Cheat, crashes in Velvets style with acoustic guitar and screeching feedback. The chorus sings
atop a flailing drum kit, distorted strings, and wailing electric guitar. The marimbas and strings that power Baby, I'm Just a Fool, sweetly underscore a
very dark pop song, complete with da-do-da-do-dat det-det-do's. It descends into beautifully textured chaos led by a loopy violin solo over seven
minutes. Songs in A&E is the most consistent recording Spiritualized has issued since 1997's Ladies and Gentlemen We Are Floating in Space. It
contains the best elements of the band's signature sound, and paradoxically hedonistic yet utterly spiritual lyric themes. That said, newly focused energy,
willfully restrained arrangements, and taut compositions give the set a sheer emotional power that no Spiritualized recording has ever displayed before,
making it, quite possibly, their finest outing yet.
- Thomas Jurek (All Music)LP1
1. Harmony 1 (Mellotron)
2. Sweet Talk
3. Death Take Your Fiddle
4. I Gotta Fire
5. Soul on Fire
6. Harmony 2 (Piano)
7. Sitting on Fire
8. Yeah Yeah
9. You Lie You Cheat
1. Harmony 3 (Voice)
2. Baby I'm Just a Fool
3. Don't Hold Me Close
4. Harmony 4 (The Old Man )
5. The Waves Crash In
6. Harmony 5 (Accordion)
7. Borrowed Your Gun
8. Harmony 6 (Glockenspiel)
9. Goodnight Goodnight$24.99Vinyl LP - 2 LPs Sealed Buy Now
Sorceress (Black Vinyl)Pressed On Black Vinyl
There are few bands that can or will match Sweden's Opeth. Since forming in the tiny Stockholm suburb of Bandhagen in 1990, the Swedes have eclipsed convention, defiantly crushed the odds, and, most importantly, crafted 12 stunningly beautiful, become one of the best bands on the planet; on album or on stage. Ask any Opeth fan. Enquire with any band that's shared the proverbial pine with the Swedes. Or, get a label representative to talk Opeth. They'll all tell you the same thing: Opeth are peerless. And they're only getting better.
Opeth's new album, Sorceress, their first for Nuclear Blast via the band's imprint label Moderbolaget Records, is proof chief architect Mikael Åkerfeldt has a near-endless well of greatness inside. From the album's opener "Persephone" to "The Wilde Flowers" and "Strange Brew" to the album's counterpart title tracks "Sorceress" and "Sorceress II", Opeth's twelfth full-length is an unparalleled adventure, where visions cleverly and secretly change, colours mute as if weathered by time, and sounds challenge profoundly. Sorceress is, by definition, moored in Åkerfeldt's impressive record collection-his one true vice-but, as always, there's more invention than appropriation at play.
"This time around I didn't think about what I wanted to do," Åkerfeldt reveals. "I was forced to write. But once I started, it was easy. This record, like the last record, didn't take long to write. Like five or six months. The thoughts behind this record developed as I was writing. The only thing I was thinking about with this record was to write that songs didn't musically connect. I made sure if I had a song that was new sounding for this record, I'd make the next song completely different. I think the songs are very different from one another. It's very diverse."
Certainly, every Opeth record has had diversity. In 1995, Orchid reset the rules of death metal. Six years later, Blackwater Park hit the high note for musicality in a genre generally devoid of it. Damnation, in 2003, was the work of a band determined to upend the norm. Five years after that, Watershed closed Opeth's chapter on death metal by visiting its darkest corners and holding its native brutality aloft. And in 2014, Pale Communion officially bridged the progressive music gap by twisting the intrepid sounds of '60s, '70s, and '80s into contemporary brilliance. So, really, what's so different about Sorceress?
"My music taste got a little wider," grins Åkerfeldt. "I started listening to jazz. I bought a lot of Coltrane records. I never really thought Coltrane would be for me because I like 'dinner jazz.' I like comfortable, soft, nice, and lovely jazz. Like Miles Davis' '50s stuff. Porgy and Bess, for example. I guess Dave Brubeck fits in there, too. So, that's the only new influx of musical inspiration for me. Other than that, I've been buying the same type of records I always have. Prog, symphonic rock, singer/songwriter, metal, hard rock But there wasn't anything that set me off like The Zombies or Scott Walker. Nothing got me going this time."
Actually, that's not entirely true. Åkerfeldt's always mining for progressive gold. Good, rare music is particularly good at getting his motor running. He found double-gold in one-off Italian outfit Il Paese dei Balocchi and Bobak, Jons, Malone's ultra-obscure Motherlight album. To wit, get Åkerfeldt talking about either and he's all too pleased to discuss the finer points of Il Paese dei Balocchi's string-based darkness or how he fan-boyed Malone via email to get the famed British orchestrator and one-time Iron Maiden producer to contribute to Sorceress.
"I absolutely love Il Paese dei Balocchi," Åkerfeldt professes. "They did one album. It's insanely good. It has everything I love about progressive rock in it. This album is so orchestrated and epic. It's got lots of string sections. It's very moody, dark, and sad. It's a mystery they didn't do any more. As for Will Malone, he did the strings and stuff for the Sabbath records-Sabotage and Never Say Die! But now he does strings for pop artists like Joss Stone, The Verve, Depeche Mode. I looked him up, mostly because he was the house engineer for Morgan Studios in the '60s. He was also in a few bands. Like Orange Bicycle and played on the Motherlight album. He also had a solo record, which is also amazing and superbly rare. It's orchestral. The bulk of it is strings. It's kind of like Nick Drake."
Åkerfeldt's quick to point out, however, his newfound progressive music loves didn't directly inspire him to write Sorceress. The majority of the album was penned in Opeth's rehearsal space, where, nestled comfortably in a corner, a computer, a keyboard, and a microphone sit ready for the next Opeth epic. It isn't plush, but it's exactly the type of environment the frontman needs to focus his creative self into song.
"When I'm in a writing mode, I have tunnel vision," says Åkerfeldt. "I have a really good work ethic. I go down to the studio everyday early in the morning and I work. I absolutely love it. It's so much fun. It's much easier now, too. I write complete demos. I sequence the songs in the order I want them to be on the record. I do mixing. I do overdubs. Once I'm done, I give copies to the guys so they can listen to the album. They practice to it on their own. When it's time to go into the studio, everybody does their own thing. It obviously works."
For Sorceress, Opeth returned to Rockfield Studios in Wales, where the Swedes had tracked Pale Communion in 2014 with Tom Dalgety. The experience was so positive and historical-the countryside studio was also home to pivotal Budgie, Queen, Rush, Judas Priest, and Mike Oldfield recordings-there really was no other option for Opeth and crew. Rockfield Studios or bust! The studio, with Dalgety yet again in tow, provided the necessary isolation, the right bucolic atmosphere, the best gear, and three square meals a day for Sorceress to come out the other end spitting fire. All in 12 bittersweet days, too.
"There was a time when I came out of our recordings a wreck," Åkerfeldt bemoans. "But now I come out with a wish. I wish it wouldn't have gone so quickly. There's emptiness after I leave the studio. I love writing and recording in the studio. It's lovely at Rockfield. It's in the sticks. It's got horses and cows. There's lots of sheep in Wales. But the studio is just a studio. It's so beautiful there. So quiet. It's a residential studio as well, so we live there while we're recording. We have chefs for us, too. So, we can just be there, playing, recording, and hanging out."
If life is like a Peter Max poster, the lyrics to Sorceress aren't. There's color, but they've been treated, corrupted, and befouled. That is to say, they're much darker. Some of bleak lyrical tones stem from Åkerfeldt's personal life-and are thusly contorted beyond recognition-while others touch grimly on topics like love and what happens to people on the other side of it. In fact, some of the lyrical ideas are similar to what was happening on Blackwater Park.
"I made sure to write good lyrics," Åkerfeldt laughs. "This sounds very old-fashioned black metal to say, but the lyrics are misanthropic. It's not a concept record, so there's no theme running through the record. Most of the record deals with love. The negative aspects of love. The jealously, the bitterness, the paranoia, and the mind games of love. So, it's a love record. Love songs. Love can be like a disease or a spell."
Luckily, for Åkerfeldt and crew-bassist Martín MÉndez, drummer Martin Axenrot, guitarist Fredrik Åkesson, and keyboardist Joakim Svalberg-the lineup doesn't have to deal with Sorceress' main theme. They've been together since Heritage was completed, and according to Åkerfeldt he's not been in a better band situation before. Not since Orchid. Not since Still Life. Not since Ghost Reveries.
"It's the best band situation I've ever had. Fans will look at our eras and have their favorite lineup, but this is the best. Even the happiest days of the first and second lineups aren't comparable to what I have now. We never fight. It's like a good work team. We know each other professionally and personally. As much as we're a band, we're also friends. We hang out when we're not doing Opeth."
A core team is a good thing, when Opeth's credibility is in full view of fans and critics. Åkerfeldt's very aware of what the masses have had to say about Opeth since Watershed. While some disliked the musical shift on Heritage, most have applauded it. They've come to expect something new from Opeth. True to form, Sorceress will give long-time fans and weary critics reason to re-think Opeth and what it takes to be musically fearless.
"I hope they'll like the record," posits Åkerfeldt. "I can only talk from my perspective and taste here, but we offer diversity that's not really present in the scene today. Whatever genre. We've always been a special band. We've gotten a lot of shit for being different. We still do. Our time will come, I think. It comes down to perseverance. It comes down to not giving up or giving in to public opinion. Music is about doing your own thing or going your own way."1. Persephone
3. The Wilde Flowers
4. Will O The Wisp
6. Sorceress 2
7. The Seventh Sojourn
8. Strange Brew
9. A Fleeting Glance
11. Persephone (Slight Return)
12. The Ward
13. Spring MCMLXXIV$29.99Vinyl LP - 2 LPs Sealed Buy Now
SavagesMax Cavalera is the walking embodiment of creative energy, of all of the diverse layers of urgency that are possible from that select few whose artistic output defines genres. Mystic shaman, protest singer, revolutionary hero, everyday metalhead, furious consumer of heavy music of all shades, husband, father, leader, songwriter Cavalera reigns as the adoptive tribal chief of a generation of fans, stretching from the roughest slums of South America to the coldest confines of Russia. Anywhere that people are disenfranchised, the songs of SOULFLY serve as their anthems.
Armed with Cavalera's four-stringed guitars, unmistakable growl and instantly recognizable riffage, the muddy tones and constant rhythmic bounce of SOULFLY has retained its gritty edge while pushing the boundaries of what's possible in metal. »Savages« represents a career-defining moment, solidifying the lineup with longtime lead guitarist Marc Rizzo (who has been in SOULFLY almost as long as Max was in SEPULTURA), bassist Tony Campos (Static X, Ministry, Prong) and Max's 21 year-old Zyon, who splits his time between drumming in LODY KONG and now SOULFLY.
"All of the things that make SOULFLY killer are combined in Savages," Max declares.
»Savages« melds the most brutal, the heaviest and overall the most vibrant components that made up each record in SOULFLY's diverse catalog. By Max's own account, »Savages« is possessed of the tribal groove of the first two SOULFLY albums, particularly in songs like 'Bloodshed', 'Ayatollah of Rock 'N' Rolla' and 'Master of Savagery'. But there's also the thrash metal that was found on DARK AGES and OMEN; whereas the CAVALERA CONSPIRACY records contain short, punky bursts, the new SOULFLY record gets into the epic length territory of early METALLICA. The death metal vibe of SOULFLY's »Enslaved« emerges in songs like 'Fallen' and 'Cannibal Holocaust'.
"I really like the name »Savages«. I like single words that sound powerful, like 'Primitive', 'Roots', 'Arise'," Max explains. "It's about the human condition right now. We have the Internet and we're working on missions to Mars, but we are still decapitating each other and blowing up marathons. We're still savages. Even with technology and how far we've come in the world, our spirit is still that of a savage."
A trailblazing pioneer and musician with millions of albums sold who nevertheless retains boundless street cred due to his grimy, raw and undeniable authenticity; Max Cavalera is one of the most prolific artists the realm of heavy music has ever known. There's CAVALERA CONSPIRACY, which reunited Max with his brother and former bandmate, Igor Cavalera. There was the brutal attack of NAILBOMB, Max's collaboration with Alex Newport from FUDGE TUNNEL, which included members of DEAD KENNEDYS, FRONT LINE ASSEMBLY, BIOHAZARD and NEUROSIS on-stage. There's his forthcoming band with members of THE DILLINGER ESCAPE PLAN, MASTODON and THE MARS VOLTA. Of course, there's Max's unassailable work as SEPULTURA's founder, leading the Brazilian band from their badass lo-fi beginnings, through their era of sophisticated thrash classics, up through the cultural landmark that is 'Roots'.
SOULFLY began almost instantaneously after his departure from the band he founded. The eponymously titled debut »Soulfly« sold over 500,000 copies in the United States alone, further expanding upon the tribal foundation of 'Roots' with percussive instrumentation, forays into esoteric sounds and multiple guest performers. Across the seven albums and never-ending tours that followed, Max worked with a who's-who of the heavy music scene as band mates, guest musicians and touring members, including guys from SLIPKNOT, SLAYER, MEGADETH, DEFTONES, RADIOHEAD, STONE SOUR, CYPRESS HILL, MACHINE HEAD, DEVILDRIVER, FEAR FACTORY, MORBID ANGEL, THROWDOWN, S.O.D., SKINDRED, BORKNAGAR, WILL HAVEN and CATTLE DECAPITATION, among others.
In addition to Max's own self-production, a number of important producers have lent their skills to SOULFLY, including »Roots« producer Ross Robinson (KORN, AT THE DRIVE-IN), Toby Wright (Ozzy Osbourne, SLAYER), Andy Sneap (MEGADETH, KILLSWITCH ENGAGE), ex-SOULFLY guitarist Logan Mader (FIVE FINGER DEATH PUNCH, GORJIA) and Zeuss (HATEBREED, SUICIDE SILENCE) and Terry Date (PANTERA, DEFTONES).
Cavalera asked Date, who had mixed for SOULFLY in the past, to produce the new album. Once studio time with the legendary producer was on the calendar, Max kicked into high gear with the material. Max and Zyon worked on the songs that would comprise »Savages« at home. "Zyon came up to me and said, 'Give me a shot. I'll play on the record for you. I won't let you down," explains the elder Cavalera. "I went into a room with him to jam and it felt great. So I said, 'Fuck yeah, let's do it!"
Generally on a SOULFLY album, the drummers would learn the songs in the studio, based on demo recordings from Max. This time, Max had the luxury of working out the songs at home with Zyon. "We jammed every single day for a month. He knew 90% of the material already when we got into the studio. It reminded me of recording the old Sepultura stuff, like Arise and Chaos A.D., Igor knew exactly what he was going to do before we went into the studio. This was very similar."
Cavalera says he must've written at least 1,000 riffs specifically for »Savages«. "The killer riff is what hooks the whole song together," he says. "For me the writing process is about finding the most killer riffs possible. It's a battle; sometimes I struggle with the guitar for hours. You have to throw it down on the floor and take a break. Come back a few hours later. 'Let's try this again, motherfucker!' Grab it again and go to battle, go to war with the guitar until you get the right riffs."
Max points to BLACK SABBATH's 'Symptom of the Universe' as one of the penultimate riffs of all time, citing SABBATH's Tony Iommi and METALLICA frontman James Hetfield as among the riff-masters he most admires. "I think of riff making as an art-form. I take it really seriously. I think it deserves more attention. It has such value."
Speaking of riffs, Rizzo came into the band a decade ago and his love of thrash metal, death metal and collaborative spirit has energized Max ever since. "When Marc entered Soulfly, it was a drastic change. He's the guitar player I've been looking for my whole life. Andreas [Kisser] and I really clicked when we worked together. I never had that again after that. We had other guys that were cool, but it was never 100% there. When Marc came in, I found it! We've developed a great bond since." Rizzo particularly shines on the opening track on Savages, 'Bloodshed.' "There's stuff all over the song - clean guitars, feedback - he just makes the song better."
Campos has a lengthy resume in the world of metal and Max says they bonded over their shared Latino heritage, among other things. "I had this idea about this guy Vargas, a Venezuelan cannibal, they call him 'El Comegente.' He's the Hannibal Lecter of the Andes. We both read about it. Tony sings some of it in Spanish and I sing in Portuguese. He's a great bass player too, fucking amazing. Killer bass tones, distortion, all balls-out metal. He keeps this shit real heavy, great tone. It's great recording with guys who know what they're doing. I don't have to ask if they know."
Max acknowledges the inherent risk in putting a 21 year-old behind the kit for such an important record, but it was a risk he absolutely wanted to take. "To have my son drumming on the album, that's killer. I like risks. I like to start shit up and see what happens. Even if I fail, at least I knew I tried. Rather than knowing I didn't try at all. To me, that's the bigger failure. It took a little bit of courage to put my son on it. I came to the studio and told Terry there was a young drummer who doesn't play to a click. Terry knew what to do and Zyon did great. The drums sound amazing."
Like all things Max Cavalera, does SOULFLY's »Savages is a family affair. Not only does it mark Zyon's recorded debut with the band, but one of Max's other kids throws down some vocals in the opening track, 'Bloodshed'. "My son Igor has a killer punk rock voice that reminds me of the old CORROSION OF CONFORMITY days," Max says. "The chorus has this old punk style riff, almost like a MISFITS type riff. His voice is killer."
Like every SOULFLY album, »Savages« contains an impressive guest list comprised of veterans and up-and-comers. CLUTCH's Neil Fallon turns up on 'Ayatollah of Rock 'N' Rolla', the title of which was inspired by Mel Gibson's classic Mad Max 2: The Road Warrior movie. Jamie Hanks from I DECLARE WAR brought his high and low deathcore vocals to 'Fallen', a death metal oriented song Max says is in the vein of CANNIBAL CORPSE.
Mitch Harris from NAPALM DEATH contributed vocals to 'K.C.S.' Harris has been around the Cavaleras long enough that there are videos of him changing Zyon's diapers when SOULFLY's new drummer was just one month old. "Mitch came to the studio just to hang out during a day off from tour," Max explains. "I'm like, 'You ready to sing some shit on this record?' I put him on the spot. He's like, 'Right now?' I said, 'Fuck yeah, let's do it!' There was one point where we were recording together where he did a scream and I saw his eyeball popping out of his face like a cartoon. I was like, 'Dude that was the most metal thing I've seen in a long time.'"
Even as Max continues to consume new music from band like NINE INCH NAILS, MAN MUST DIE, TRIGGER THE BLOODSHED and I DECLARE WAR, even as he revisits seminal material from METALLICA, SLAYER, C.O.C. and the like, and indulges his penchant for world music, and gets his hands in his other projects and collaborations, it all adds up to a singular, distinct, straightforward and riff-heavy machine known as SOULFLY.LP 1
2. Cannibal Holocaust
4. Ayatollah Of Rock 'N' Rolla
5. Master Of Savagery
1. This Is Violence
3. El Comegente
5. Fuck Reality (Bonus Track)
6. Soulfly IX (Bonus Track)$24.99Vinyl LP - 2 LPs Sealed Buy Now
A Dotted LineThe Grammy Award-winning, multi-platinum selling trio Nickel Creek-Chris Thile (mandolin/vocals), Sara Watkins (fiddle/vocals), and Sean Watkins (guitar/vocals)-officially reunites for the first time since its 2007 self-described indefinite hiatus with a new album, A Dotted Line, in 2014. The band then tours the US in support of the Eric Valentine-produced album this spring and summer, with shows in New York, Boston, Washington, Chicago, Nashville, and Los Angeles, as well as at the Telluride Bluegrass Festival and Newport Folk Festival.
As Nickel Creek's 25th anniversary approached, the band members decided they ought to mark it in some way, so they got together to write music in Chris Thile's apartment last year. They ended up with six new co-written songs, which they eventually took to a Los Angeles studio, along with one tune by Thile, one by Sean Watkins, and two covers: Sam Phillips' Where Is Love Now and Mother Mother's Hayloft. There they worked with Valentine (Queens of the Stone Age, Smash Mouth), who had produced Nickel Creek's previous album, Why Should the Fire Die?.
We were excited every day to be there, Sara Watkins says. Having grown up singing together, there is something natural about our voices and it's really fun to harmonize. Our voices have come to match each other's really well. Sean and I are siblings, and Chris is about as close to a sibling as you could get. Sean Watkins continues: It feels more natural and easy than it ever did, by far. Getting to spend time alone with our own musical personalities has helped us mature. There's a joyful aspect to Nickel Creek no matter what we're doing. Things just steer themselves into that sort of place, concurs Thile. We will go poke around in the dark corners but always with a heavy dose of optimism.1. Rest of My Life
4. Christmas Eve
6. 21st of May
7. Love of Mine
8. Elephant in the Corn
9. You Don't Know What's Going On
10. Where is Love Now$22.99Vinyl LP + CD - Sealed Buy Now