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Dire Wolves – The Compleat Trancing Master

Another Bandcamp Friday pick here rounds up a huge collection of rarities from Dire Wolves. Their releases are notoriously hard to keep up with, between live tapes, full LPs, lathe cuts, and cassettes, but they help out with a wealth of seldom heard fodder here. The band’s long been known for their live prowess and this comp culls together 172 minutes of live and rare compilation cuts that don’t make the rounds too often. It’s a lot to wrap your head around, but well worth a deep dive to let this one seep into your skin over the next couple of days. The band throws in covers of The Clean and Faust, along with a ton of unheard gems that are sure to please the Wolves fans out there. Hard to pick a favorite from this bunch but check out “Spyhopping” below.

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Wet Tuna – Eau’d To a Fake Bookie, Vol. 2

Hey whaddaya know it’s another Bandcamp Friday — no fees and no holding back. I’m going to run through a few releases worth your hard earned cash today and I’m going to star with the Tuna we all know and love. Seems quite a few no fee days have brought with it a new batch from Wet Tuna and they’re all essential. This one’s tagged as a follow-up to their July EP Eau’d To A Fake Bookie and Vol. 2 lays into some deep, damp vibes that feel just as necessary hiding out in September as they did in the heatwave summer of this cursed year. Matt n’ Pat dial in the dub-dripped haze and hold steady before they land in a goo n’ blues territory further on. At this point I shouldn’t have to convince any heads to hook up with a new Tuna offering, just putting out there on a day of good will. Check out “Deal > Dealin’” below.




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Howlin’ Rain announces Under The Wheels Vol. 2

With us all in stasis regarding the reinstatement of live shows, Howlin’ Rain’s second installment of their live album series couldn’t come at a more opportune time. Under The Wheels: Live From The Coasts, Vol. 2 is drawn again from recordings across the band’s 2018 and 2019 tours and it boasts another vital link to Howlin’ Rain’s ability to expand on their catalog once under the lights. Incidentally, the last show I saw before quarantine was Howlin’ Rain. It seemed worth the couple hour drive to head down to Brooklyn from Upstate NY for the night to see them pack out Union Pool and I was proven right time and again as the band tore into many of the songs that appear on this volume. Like its predecessor, this one’s on limited colorways and wrapped up in Arik Roper cover art. They’re leading with a scorched version of “Calling Lightning Pt 2” from 2008’s Magnificent Fiend that you can preview below. Live Rain, rainbow foil printing, crazy color vinyl, what’s not to love here? Official pre-orders start on Friday to coincide with this month’s Bandcamp ‘no fee’ day.



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Tim Presley – Under the Banner of Concern

Just because it’s mainly music around here doesn’t mean I don’t have time for a little book love, especially when the book is from site mainstay Tim Presley. I’ve been revisiting some of Tim’s earlier works lately and this news item couldn’t come at a better time. Presley’s pairing up with Mexican Summer’s archival and print arm Anthology Editions to produce a book of drawings, paintings, and poetry that should feel familiar to anyone who’s been absorbing some of his album covers over the years. The aesthetic here pays particular attention to his work as Drinks with Cate LeBon. Under the Banner of Concern features art that was previously part of Tim’s shows in Chicago and L.A., showing at Soccer Club Club and The Pit respectively. Any fans of the site know that just a touch under the music obsession lies an obsession with album art and artists, so this one hits quite nicely. The book is out August 25th and follows his previous collections You Don’t Have Your Eyes Yet  (2010) and Mush (2016).

Preview the book here and check out some pages below.



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Sub Pop Singles: Kikagaku Moyo & Terry

The ranks of the Sub Pop Singles Club are always a good place to keep an eye, and usually a good bet to go in blind when they announce. The label embraces the edges of what they’d normally consider for full releases (through sometimes I wish this embrace would extend beyond just a one-shot 7”) and they shine a light on some of the more deserving artists in their sphere. Last year’s series is now getting out in to the physical world, but that also means those who didn’t go all in can still grab the digital delights as they come piecemeal. Yesterday saw the release of two RSTB regulars and both are in fine form.

First up is a new single from longtime faves Kikagaku Moyo. The band lights into a searing cover of “Gypsy Davey,” and English folk traditional that’s been most often associated with Sandy Denny’s version. The band, rounded out with vocals from Kandice Holms (Bells), gives the cover a good nod, mixing the earthen smolder of the original with a bit of their own psychedelic smoke. On the flip they enter the folk-tinged whisper of “Mushi No Uta,” which laps at the listener with a gorgeous simplicity and tender soul.

The label sweetens the release day with a new single from Aussie’s Terry as well. The band has been pretty low key since their 2018 full length I’m Terry only releasing a short and sweet EP last year. “Take The Cellphone” hits all the right sweet spots for Terry – as post-punk throbber that’s tinged with a squeamish pop sense and winking all the way. The b-side’s an instrumental with a laconic feel, despite its rather political title, “Debt and Deficit Disaster.” The song’s a slow creeper, but as with anything from the band, its no throwaway. Both singles are great shots for the series, though I’d think that along with the earlier inclusion of Minneapolis’ Uranium Club, all of these could welcome full lengths from these bands into the Sub Pop roster.




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White Heaven Out Reissued by Black Editions Group

More great news from the Black Editions Group. As they work through the PSF catalog, they continue to put great records back in their proper place among the stacks. This time the label has a reissue of White Heaven’s scorching 1991 LP Out. The record features guitar from Michio Kurihara (Ghost, Cosmic Invention) and it marks a high watermark of ’90s psychedelic Japan. Originals of the LP will set you back upwards of $300 so its an amazing piece to have back in circulation. The album is a feedback chomping monster of riff and riot that cannot be denied. Check out the slow-burn freakout of “Mandrax Town” and get over to the site, where they have a mailorder-only gold edition of the LP.


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Garcia Peoples – Live @ Nublu

As I may have mentioned, its a particularly good year for official live recordings, with everyone from Mythic Sunship and Dungen laying down platters to Cool Ghouls, Chris Forsyth, and even an Only Ones rarity floating around out there. Add Garcia Peoples to the list. It should come as no surprise that the band’s into the boots, Archive.org is practically littered with GP shows at this point, but it’s nice to have an official piece coming out. The band’s residency at Nublu last year saw the band in top form and this official tape (recorded by NYC Taper) captures them going all in on their title cut from One Step Behind. Tapes are limited to 300, so snap ’em up.



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Ten Years Gone: A Tribute To Jack Rose

I didn’t have a chance to mention this one yesterday, but essential news nontheless. Its been ten years since Jack Rose vanished from this earth too soon and its still the decade hasn’t lessened the tragedy one bit. My fondest memory is of seeing him and Wooden Wand in the back of a small bar in Greenpoint. Jack’s presence was magnetic and made any venue come alive with the movement of his strings. Tompkins Square has released a touching tribute to Jack, curated by Buck Curran and it features “original instrumentals made as tribute to Jack by a few of his friends (Mike Gangloff, Sir Richard Bishop, Helena Espvall, Buck Curran, Micah Blue Smaldone, Nick Schillace) and by a group of emerging artists inspired by his music (Andy McLeod, Simone Romei, Matt Sowell, Joseph Allred, Prana Crafter, Paolo Laboule Novellino, Mariano Rodriguez).”

There are a ton of RSTB favorites in this list, and the album carries on the spirit of Jack Rose with beauty and grace. I’d highly recommend tucking into this one on a crisp winter’s morning and letting it wash over you for the rest of the day.



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Prana Crafter Split for Robert Hunter on Baked Tapes

A surprise release snuck out over the weekend from Baked Tapes. In the wake of Robert Hunter’s death this year both Will from PC and ragenap wound up processing their feelings on the matter through the only medium that seems appropriate, turning their sorrow to song with a split tape that cracks open like a call to heaven. For his side Will invokes the “Beggar’s Tomb,” churning grief into a miasmic haunt that’s fried through to the bone by guitar exorcisms on the back half. The tape serves as a nice cap on Prana Crafter’s already stellar year and a celebration of a poet and songwriter whose imprint will be felt long after his mortal years.



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Rose City Band Signs to Thrill Jockey, Reissues Debut

One of the greatest surprises of 2019 was the debut from Rose City Band, the mysteriously shrouded band (with a strangely familiar voice and guitar sound) on Ripley Johnson and Sanae Yamada’s Jean Sandwich Records. As I mentioned in a review previously, “Rose City Band slides in on an autumnal glow of golden shivers, slow-motion choogle, honeyed hues, and cedar swoons. “Rip City” plays right into the hands of the Cosmic American cavalcade that’s building steam in all the best nooks and nodes across the tattered tableau of 2018-2019.” If you missed out on the initial pressing, now’s the time to right some wrongs. The original Jean City pressing in green is long gone, but, Thrill Jockey’s got a limited red version of the LP up on their site for sale now. It’s one of 2019’s essentials for sure! Here’s hoping the signing bodes well for a sequel. We can always use more RCB in our lives.




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