Excellent new things, excellent old things and some excellent rare things.
Record of the Week over here is the superb new Deleted Scenes from Oakland’s Once & Future Band. Released on Castle Face, it is an album full of immaculate production. Audio rays of sunshine that sound like studio deep cuts from the Wilson, McCartney or ELO vaults. Few bands around create such joyous music, utterly filled with smartness.
+ We released this album as a Dinked Edition. We are sold out BUT, we fancy we'll have a few more copies early next week so keep an eye on the website.
+ If you head to the site, we have some signed copies of their self titled and Brain releases.
A huge return this. The New Abnormal is the long awaited new album from The Strokes, the band’s first album in seven years. It's often said that the bands first albums (2001 debut Is This It and its superb 2003 follow-up Room On Fire) were so good that they could literally do no wrong. Although there have been moments in-between that have felt flat, The New Abnormal is a really glorious return to the tense jangling riffs and drive of their earlier work, but played by an older band who sound introspective and self-aware. In many ways it's the perfect album for them to have made. They don't pretend to be that young band, but you can just tell that it's them.
+ CD/Tape in stock and shipping now, LP formats due in a couple of weeks.
Zero Dollar Bill EP is the debut release from Do Nothing. Really good this, excited to see where they go. It's full of post punk shapes and smart pop rhythms... It has that Talking Heads off-kilter to it in places.
Squarepusher returns with the new Lamental EP, a follow up to the Be Up A Hello (more stock due shortly) from earlier in the year. Such lush ambience here, Midi Sans Frontieres in particular has a beautiful low key to it.
Queen & Slim is the second full-length feature film score composed by Dev Hynes (aka Blood Orange), following his work for Gia Coppola’s Palo Alto in 2013. Man, it's pretty special stuff this. There are little moments that bubble away with such prettiness and then the strings swell and it's heartbreaking. Really looking forward to catching the film. Lush raised embossing on the sleeve for fans of texture and type.
Rock Bottom Rhapsody is the eighth studio LP from Pokey LaFarge. It's all about redemption and the music does feel lighter than before on it's stylistic tour-de-force of the American songbook. He's always pretty captivating.
The most excellent Bo Ningen return with a super limited clear vinyl 7" of B.C, the first taster of their forthcoming new LP. A slow prickling start unfolds into a new gear for the band, really excited to hear more.
Also very very very limited is the new Bias 12" from Floating Points, one of the many stand out moments from his excellent new LP. We will have stock landing shortly and the vast majority have already gone, so don't miss out on this one!
We have a fantastic compilation of Fuzz & Soul Sega from 70's Mauritius this week on the French Born Bad label. The meeting point of Western and Indian cultures, with pop, soul and funk arrangements whirled through psychedelic haze. Some quite primitive arrangements and call and response vocals get ripped apart with some deep funk wah-wah. We totally thought Moris Zekler was a person... A Mauritian Svengali with a killer record collection. Really enjoying this, blasting it out to the sunny (empty) streets this morning.
Another couple of excellent editions on Blue Note, with Dexter Gordon's A Swingin' Affair and Jackie McLean's A Fickle Sonance. Both are actually en route so we might end up shipping them next week, but you're cool with that right?
Staying on the Blue Note, quite a few of you asked for a nudge when Chet Baker Sings is back in stock... GUYS, CHET IS BACK.
A great reissue on Alcopop! Records, with a limited edition fifteenth anniversary gold vinyl pressing of Art Brut's Bang Bang Rock And Roll. Eddie Argos' delivery still has so much snarling charm. Bloody good this.
+ For further reading, here is a very young Pitchfork dishing out a stonking 8.9 review.
Lastly this week, to mark the 10-year Anniversary of their modern classic, Merriweather Post Pavilion, Animal Collective release Ballet Slippers. Mixed by Ajay Saggar and edited by Noah Lennox (Panda Bear) this is a live release, culled from several shows from that album's North American tour and sequenced to reflect a full concert experience, complete with song transitions and interludes. The album was already pretty dreamy, but this edition has got a really lush vibe to it.
Playlist is up on the news pages, some great stuff to check out. Hope you're all able to poke your toes out into the sun safely. Stay safe, stay in touch.