[ exotica / novelty ] titles at Aquarius Records
search by:
view shopping cart

home
newest arrivals
about mailorder
catalog / list archive

A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O
P Q R S T U V W X Y Z Other

20th century composers
compilation / split
country/folk/blues
country/folk/blues ("no depression")
dvd / video / film
electronic
exotica / novelty
experimental
finland
found sounds, field recordings, oddities
hip hop
hip hop (turntablism)
hiphop
hiphop (turntablism)
international
international (africa)
international (asia)
international (central / south america)
international (cuba)
international (europe)
international (french pop)
international (latin american psych/tropicalia)
international (middle east)
japan
japan (noise/free/psych)
japan (pop)
jazz
local
metal
metal (black metal)
metal (stoner rock)
metal (stoner/doom)
new zealand
print
reggae/dub
rock/pop
rock/pop ('60s psych/garage)
rock/pop (goth/industrial/darkwave)
rock/pop (krautrock)
rock/pop (prog rock)
rock/pop (punk/hardcore)
soul/funk
soundtracks
spoken word & comedy

Records of the Week
Alison's Favorites
Allan's Favorites
Andee's Favorites
Andrew's Favorites
Antaeus's Favorites
Ashley's Favorites
Awvftsatomfl1.mp3's Favorites
Awvftsatomfl2.mp3's Favorites
Awvftsatomfl3.mp3's Favorites
Awvftsatomfl4.mp3's Favorites
Byram's Favorites
Cameron's Favorites
Christine's Favorites
Cup's Favorites
Frank's Favorites
Harry's Favorites
Irwin's Favorites
Jenny's Favorites
Jill's Favorites
Jim's Favorites
Jon's Favorites
Kerry's Favorites
Lauren's Favorites
Matt's Favorites
Michael's Favorites
Nick's Favorites
Pam's Favorites
Sally's Favorites
Scott's Favorites



IMPORTANT (Please read to avoid confusion):
Some items below may be tagged with a bold, red, all-caps "out of print/unavailable" notice. This does NOT mean that all other items not so tagged are, in fact, in stock -- or for that matter, in print and available, though there's a good chance they are. Some folks get confused on this point, and we can see why, so please read this for further clarification and other important before-you-order information. Unlike some mailorder websites, we don't have an electronic inventory system linked to our site, so you can't be sure of what we actually have or don't have in stock at any given moment without asking us -- please email our mailorder department for availability status -- or better yet, just go ahead and place your order using our shopping cart function and we'll get back to you with the status of each item. If you have general non-mailorder questions, email the store.


album cover 'PATE, RON AND HIS DEBONAIRS Raudelunas 'Pataphysical Revue (Alcohol) cd 17.98
THIS IS CURRENTLY OUT OF PRINT OR OTHERWISE UNAVAILABLE TO US AT THE MOMENT, SO PLEASE DO NOT ORDER IT. SORRY.
Not sure how many of you remember the Reverend Fred Lane. He was (is) a maniacal, big band jazz, Las Vegas-style showman, vocalising, testifying and spewing a litany of totally random craziness over a splattery, skronky, surreal big band blast of trainwreck horns, trap-kit down the stairs percussion, and wild octopus piano. Think a musical version of Neil Hamburger, only less pathetic and more disturbed. Or disturbing. Shimmy disc compiled two of his long out of print lps on cd years back, and that cd still ranks as one of our all time favorite records. So fucked, but so catchy and funny and noisy and just utterly damaged. There was a rumour of another Fred Lane record existing and slated for release on Shimmy Disc, but supposedly Lane broke into the Shimmy Disc office, stole the master tapes, and then ran nude through downtown New York unfurling the tape as he ran. How cool is that? So we were super excited when we got wind of this archival release of a 1975 performance, featuring Ron 'Pate's Debonairs, Lane's occasional back up band, and Lane as the MC and featuring loads of local luminaries from the vibrant Tuscaloosa, Alabama art scene. This document is less of a wild jazz free for all like the Lane records, and more like a demented variety show, equal parts wild free improvisation, 'serious' academic minimalism, wacky community theater, skronky jazz, droney tribal ambience, and good old straight up goofiness. Lane makes for an excellent emcee, channelling Wayne Newton through Neil Hamburger, trying to whip what sounds like a TINY audience into some sort of frenzy (with the help of lots of canned, pre-recorded applause) and even belts out a few sort-of-standards: 'My Kind Of Town', 'Volare', etc. But this isn't the Fred Lane show, unfortunately, as Lane mostly conducts raffles and performs random monologues. However, lack of Lane aside, things do get pretty interesting. Random ensembles perform pieces that range in sound from No Neck Blues Band style stumbly tribal folk, to drony medieval chamber music to ambient proto-industrial clang. There's even a performance of Concerto For Active Frogs, that should MOST DEFINITELY appeal to aQ customers, a piece composed for taped frogs, featuring a frog soloist, a frog chorus and various complimetary instruments. Pretty cool stuff. While there are some cringeworthy moments, some of the stand-up is BRUTAL and there's definitely a you-had-to-be-there-and-maybe-it-would-also-help-if-these-were-your-friends vibe, this is still pretty amazing and weird and well worth your time. And definitely try and track down the Fred Lane release on Shimmy Disc for a blast of the weirdest, skronkiest, big band creepiness you will ever hear.
MPEG Stream: "Monologue"
MPEG Stream: "Concerto For Active Frogs"
MPEG Stream: "The Raffle"
MPEG Stream: "The Captains Of Industry"

album cover A JOURNEY TO HAPPINESS ISLAND s/t (Mutable Press) lp 12.98
A children's album of sorts! As its creators Malcolm Felder, Gabe Boyer and company envisioned it, A Journey... is "not so much a parody of children's music, as in fact an exploration of the style of production that goes into the creation of a children's album." That said, it features characters who go by names such as leading man Mr. Tadpole, narrator/dermatologist (?) Dr. Esophagus, Mr. Chipmunk, Mr. Jeebee and the Sunflower Cabaret. The sounds are playful and quirky. Fun for a wider age group than you might expect!
A side note: If you dig this lp you might wanna check out the cd called The Textbook Tapes which is a tweaked, lo-fi sci-fi concept album created by the same folks.

album cover AAVIKKO Back From The Futer (Muysic For Peoples) cd 17.98
Wow! A new Aavikko full length! This just might be the year of the Aavikko. When we first slapped this aluminum disc on our system we must admit we were a little taken aback: Hi-Fi Aavikko? Could it be? For so long these Casio-crazy Finns have championed the most primitive of production aesthetics with a sound only once removed from a ring tone. But here they were in crystal clarity and using the entire spectrum of the audible sound range. Did they get a sponsorship with some big keyboard company? Sources close to Aavikko are keeping tight-lipped about the group's new cache of keyboard equipment. Okay, let's put this in perspective before we go any further: a "hi-fi" Aavikko is still "lo-fi" by most standards, so don't expect any enormous shifts in the Aavikko sound. Bigger than their production changes is perhaps their new-found love of exotica and classic space-age bachelor pad music as a launching pad for their new compositions. Andee pointed out that a lot of the tunes on Back From The Futur sound like a lo-fi Tipsy. Their retro-futurist vision also smacks mightily of Kraftwerk (vocoder makes its way into a couple songs as well), Gershon Kingsley with bubbling and arpeggiating synth lines, catchy melodies and upbeat tempos, and maybe even the soundtracks for Roger Corman sci-fi flicks. We love it!
MPEG Stream: "Una Lira Soluziona"
MPEG Stream: "Erotica"

album cover AAVIKKO History Of Muysic (Muysic For Peoples) cd 16.98
At long last, back in stock!! Here's our review from list 207...
Fuck. That's always a great way to start any decent review here at Aquarius. Fuck Yeah! That's even better, and certainly more appropriate for a disc we've been lusting after for so long. Aavikko is one of those elusive bands that we never seem to be able to keep in stock long enough to escape becoming a mere legend and a fading memory. The problem seems to reside in a lifetime of poor distribution and lackluster label attention. But now Aquarius has secured a direct pipeline to the band in the hopes of rectifying this shortage. Aavikko, for those who've yet to experience their magic, are easily the reigning kings of "electronic instrumental rock" (their own genre?). Hailing from Finland -- that in and of itself should be a clue -- Aavikko have honed a lo-fi electro-punk sound that's oft imitated, but never equaled. Using only cheap electric organs (most notably the Yamaha PSS Home Organ), drums and archaic analog recording technology, Aavikko compose Slavic disco, garage surf punk with rumba beats and insanely catchy pop tunes that bring to mind soundtracks to 8-bit videogames of yesteryear. History Of Muysic is an impressive collection of both no longer available Aavikko classics and unreleased tracks dating back to the group's inception in 1995. The latter includes their first rehearsal demo, outtakes from the Derek! ep sessions and their theme for the Kumman Kaa TV series (which has become one of the most popular ring tones in Finland!), among others. In the long lost and now out of print category, we're most excited by the inclusion of the eight tracks from the first, self-titled Aavikko 7". These are a veritable holy grail of primitive electronic rock and expose imitators for the slick hi-fi hucksters they really are. Probably recorded direct to cassette, you can even hear the tape drag and occasional drop outs. Fellow lovers of Bjorn Olsson will be excited by this and all analog anomalies indelibly pitted into the digital realm. All under three minutes in length, the tracks on the eponymous debut are tight and gritty pop ditties, completely trimmed of fat: the words 'overproduced' and 'Avvikko' will never be found in the same sentence but for this one. Also included on this anthology is the entire Oriental Baby CD, their collaboration with Mono Pause "Of Stomping Men", an unreleased live recording off of the beloved WFMU in NJ, their contribution to the Team Yamaha compilation and last, but in no way least, their most recent single, for the first time on CD, the amazing Eye of the Leopard with Kabar. Really folks, do yourself a favor...
MPEG Stream: "Alas Volgaa"
MPEG Stream: "Seikkailu Villi"
MPEG Stream: "Eye of the Leopard"

album cover AAVIKKO Multi Muysic (Hawaii Sounds / Spinefarm) cd 21.00
THIS IS CURRENTLY OUT OF PRINT OR OTHERWISE UNAVAILABLE TO US AT THE MOMENT, SO PLEASE DO NOT ORDER IT. SORRY.
At last, we've gotten some import copies of the latest full-length from this beloved Finnish band! We'd heard rumors of its release for some time, so we were thrilled to finally track it down. At first listen, while the Casios and '80s video game noises are still in full effect, this album is much less frantic and frenetic than the Aavikko we remember -- which means, it's *still* fairly frantic and frenetic! But they're learned some new swanky, suave moves as well. Their old "maniacal monkey jazz" tag doesn't quite fit anymore (the maniacal part, anyway). Maybe they've mellowed into something sort of like a stranger, more disturbed Jimi Tenor? And much as we loved the kooky, chaotic sounds of their old Bad Vugum album "Derek", sometimes change is good and this is a smooth shift from one eccentric realm to another. Even slowed down a bit, they're still our favorite tripped-out instrumental lounge exotica group! Utter smile-inducing retro fun.
RealAudio clip: "New York - London - Siilinjarvi - Tokyo"
RealAudio clip: "Omavastuualue"

album cover AAVIKKO Novo Atlantis (Stupido) cd 17.98
Electronic. Muysic. Finland. When we see those three words, which appear in small type on the top right corner of the cover to this album, we get pretty excited. Even when Music is spelled Muysic. ESPECIALLY when it's spelled like that. 'Cause that's means it's an Aavikko album. The mostly instrumental Finnish synthesizer/synthesizer/drums trio's new disc, Novo Atlantis, is finally here! Now, each album of theirs has always been a little bit different, but we've always loved Aavikko, from their early "maniacal monkey jazz" days as a lo-fi Casiocore band circa 1997's Derek to their more recent and polished productions of space age bachelor pad exotica like 2005's Back From The Futer.
So what's in store for listeners on Novo Atlantis? Initially we were struck by this album's even MORE electronic sound, taking Aavikko into techno-disco territory, more computery, less live band sounding. Though human metronome Tomi Leppanen (also the drummer for AQ faves Circle) is still behind the drum kit, there's plenty of purely electronic beats and rhythms on here it seems. Yet at the same time, this album also features French horn, trombone, trumpet, tuba, and even church pipe organ!! So while on one had it's all very futuristic (in a spaced out cosmic disco way), this also takes inspiration from way way back, the pre-electronic, classical music era in fact. You could call Novo Atlantis the "switched-on Bach" version of Aavikko, or more precisely, "switched-on Hoppel", Egil Hoppel allegedly being an obscure Finnish composer of the baroque period, discussed in the sleeve notes of Novo Atlantis. Supposedly he was some sort of child prodigy (he only lived 1722-1737!), an organist whose music has apparently become a major influence on Aavikko's new direction. We say allegedly and supposedly since we halfway suspect they made him him up, that he's a hoax much like those "funerary violin" fellows. Probably some quick Googling would resolve the question, but we prefer not to know for sure. If Aavikko invented him, they certainly were thorough about it - there are two purported Hoppel compositions included on the cd format as a hidden bonus track (we won't tell you how to find it, but check out our review of the most recent Agoraphobic Nosebleed disc for a clue!). And having heard those, it does seem like you can hear Hoppel's purported influence right in this disc's very first track, "Syntaksis", which definitely has an Aavikko goes classical feel, like a lot of the stuff here having shades of the "classically trained" approach of all those Moog-laden '70s prog keyboard bands a la ELP and krautrockers Novalis... But don't let that make you think this is somehow stuffy, over-serious or highbrow or whatever, nope not at all, far from it as any Aavikko fan would guess. While it's got its moody moments, most of Novo Atlantis is percolating, infectious electronic fun. Super groovy, quirky, krauty - in the Kraftwerk, Giorgio Moroder sense of krauty.
The album ends with what must be Aavikko's longest track ever, the 15 minutes of "Novo Atlantis II". Wow, quite an epic, with echoes of Joe Meek's "Telstar" in its melodies, and long mesmeric burbling sequencer trance-outs, something like early '80s Tangerine Dream, Wolfgang Duren, or Zombi's "Sapphire". A Lindstrom remix seems to be in order, where is it? Certainly Aavikko's new album fits nicely into the current disco craze. It also goes well with our obsession with skweee, too. Electronic muysic Finland, hooray!
MPEG Stream: "Syntaksis"
MPEG Stream: "Dies Irae Discodelico"
MPEG Stream: "Novo Atlantis II"

AAVIKKO Oriental Baby (Hawaii) cd ep 8.98
THIS IS CURRENTLY OUT OF PRINT OR OTHERWISE UNAVAILABLE TO US AT THE MOMENT, SO PLEASE DO NOT ORDER IT. SORRY.
The Finnish Casio-pop band we so adore from their two discs on the Bad Vugum label return with this six-song ep (that we've finally tracked down import copies of). Consider this cd for your next party of circus freaks. With "Oriental Baby" as the soundtrack, it's guaranteed to go on into the very wee hours. A feverishly demented Denny-esque boogie session with no end. The neighbours downstairs will reduce their broom handle to sawdust as they pound away at their ceiling. Definitely music to put a gleeful yet puzzled grin on your face. Featuring occasional Circle percussionist Tomi Leppanen. Wonderfully disturbingly fun.
RealAudio clip: "Pelihelvetti"

album cover AHBEZ, EDEN Eden's Island (Black Sweat) lp 29.00
Yes! One of our favorite beatnik exotica records sees the light of day again in a really nice reissue of this 1960 lp. Eden Ahbez was a unique American figure, a back-to-nature hippie mystic in the 1940's long before popular culture even knew what a hippie was. Ahbez wandered back and forth across the country on foot before landing in LA and hanging in a tight circle of raw food enthusiasts and other colorful off-the-grid characters. He often wrote poetry and played the flute and one fortuitous day in 1948, he left a song at the studio for Nat King Cole called "Nature Boy" and it surprisingly became a number one song and an international hit, covered by Frank Sinatra, Dinah Shore, George Benson and even later by Alex Chilton and Big Star! For a brief moment, the song made Ahbez a pop culture curiosity with magazine interviews and invitations to perform that were politely declined. Using royalties from that song, Ahbez was able to take care of his family and record music and write poetry, the results being this sole lp, Eden's Island. Against a backdrop of flutes, bongos, marimabas and bird calls, Ahbez intones poetic verse about seeking spirituality in natural paradises with the rhythms of the ocean and surf, giving a more meaningful heft to the Martin Denny type of Tiki Room exotica. Its peaceful vibe of removing oneself from the daily hassles and pressures of society towards the spiritual isolation of island life was easily a touchstone of the hippie movement even though it sounds a bit novel nowadays. Still the music with female background singers, island atmospheres and relaxing poetic delivery manages to beguile and transport even the most world-weary listener. An exotica record clearly in a league of its own.

album cover AKIYAMA, TETUZI & JASON KAHN Till We Meet Again (For 4 Ears) cd 14.98

album cover ALESSANDRONI, ALESSANDRO I Cantori Moderni Di Alessandroni (Penny / Flipper Music) lp + cd 27.00
THIS IS CURRENTLY OUT OF PRINT OR OTHERWISE UNAVAILABLE TO US AT THE MOMENT, SO PLEASE DO NOT ORDER IT. SORRY.
Another amazing Italian Library missive from the same folks who brought us the Daniela Casa we reviewed a while back. Alessandroni, most famously known for being the whistler for Ennio Morricone's Spaghetti Western soundtracks, was a fantastic composer in his own right as we heard previously on Prisma Sonoro, a haunting library score reissued on the Australian Roundtable label last year. On this 1970 release he created the vocal group, I Cantori Moderni Di Alessandroni, an eight to sixteen person choir, who have lent their talents to many soundtracks by Morricone, Piero Umiliani, and many other Italian composers of the 60's and 70's (and were also featured recently on Quentin Tarantino's Django Unchained soundtrack). This was the only full length the choir recorded. Through 12 original compositions by Alessandroni, the choir evoke a lilting cinematic pop sound of Italian Bossa vibes and moody themes, augmented by harpsichord, flutes and twangy guitars. The choir not only featured Alessandroni's first wife, Giulia De Mutiis, but also the incomparable Edda Dell'Orso whose wordless vocals epitomize many of Morricone's Italian western and horror scores. Fantastic and Limited!!
MPEG Stream: "Una Storia"
MPEG Stream: "Verso l'infinito"
MPEG Stream: "Insieme A Te"

album cover ALGUERO, AUGUSTO Todas Sus Grabaciones En Polydor 1968-1971 (Rama Lama Music) 2cd 25.00
A vibrant mix of early Serge Gainsbourg, Burt Bacharach, Ennio Morricone and Carl Stalling, Augusto Alguero was a Spanish composer for film and televison and this two disc survey is an incredible journey of his best output from 1968-1971. From space age bachelor pad music to ye ye pop with big lush orchestrations and swinging tunes. GROOOOOVY, baby!

album cover ALPERT'S, HERB TIJUANA BRASS Whipped Cream & Other Delights (Shout! Factory/A&M) cd 13.98
Had to list this. As old favorites go, they don't get much older, anyway. I was into this record when I was a little kid and my parents had a cassette (or was in an 8-track?) of it... You've probably heard it a million times. Tracks like "A Taste Of Honey" and "Whipped Cream" (written by Allen Toussaint) are imbedded in our cultural conciousness aren't they? Certainly the "racy" album-cover shot of the lady wearing all the whipped cream sure is - Soul Asylum thought so anyway. Trumpeter Herb Alpert and his Tijunana Brass (LA studio musicans, not real Mexican mariachis) were a '60s pop sensation, and this hit 1965 album was one of Alpert's best. Oh so swank instrumental jazzed up pop, Alpert's arrangements demonstrating his knack for mixing stick-in-the-head melodies with south-of-the-border exotica. You've got your bombastic, toe-tapping numbers, your Latin-tinged party-pleasers, your lush romantic themes, and a Tijuana-ized version of "Love Potion #9".
Now, as part of a "Herb Alpert Signature Series", this classic has been reissued on cd in a digipack, all deluxe-like, complete with two bonus tracks, a booklet full of photos and liner notes, and a poster of that cover. Can't always be listening to new wave rock, glitchy electronica, droning dirge, and avant-garde jazz now can we? Dated but delightful.
MPEG Stream: "Bittersweet Samba"
MPEG Stream: "Whipped Cream"

album cover ALPERT, HERB AND THE TIJUANA BRASS Going Places (Shout! Factory/A&M) cd 13.98
Ok, while I don't think we're gonna stock and review EVERY entry in Shout! Factory/A&M's new "Herb Alpert Signature Series", we did just list the reissue of the all-time classic Whipped Cream & Other Delights by Herb and his Tijuana Brass (and sold a bunch to some happy customers) so we'd be remiss then if we didn't also give some attention to this other classic Tijuana Brass album, Whipped Cream's follow-up Going Places. Also from 1965, this LP sported a bandolier of boppy south-of-the-border styled instrumental pop hits like "Tijuana Taxi" and "Spanish Flea" (which will ring bells with some of your for sure from its use on the old TV game show the Dating Game). Then there's the sweet "More And More Amor" and the lush va-va-va-vooom of "Mae". Also: Herb's Tijuana version of surf nugget "Walk Don't Run" alongside other familiar tunes like "I'm Getting Sentimental Over You", "Zorba The Greek" and the "3rd Man Theme". It's hard to keep a smile off the face while listening to this, really! Sunny fun from a pop world very different from today's.
MPEG Stream: "Tijuana Taxi"
MPEG Stream: "Walk Don't Run"

album cover ANDERSON, LEONNA Music To Suffer By (Trunk) cd 16.98

album cover ANDROID SISTERS, THE Best Of The Android Sisters (EM Records) cd 24.00
The robots are coming, indeed! And their latest invasion (released with much thanks and gratitude to our favorite record label of late, Japan's EM!) takes the form of this sexy electronic pop concept duo, The Android Sisters. Originally created by ZBS studios, a nonprofit audio production company from upstate New York whose purpose was to raise consciousness through media, namely via new-age-tinged sci-fi inspired radio plays, The Android Sisters began life in the early eighties as the house band in the radio series, Ruby the Galactic Gumshoe. Taking cues from Bruce Haack's electronic children's records from the '60s and '70s, The Sisters perform satirical "speak-songs" in a polyphonic monotone that goofily riff off of everything from Philip K. Dick inspired silliness ("Electronic Sheep") to Old McDonald ("Down On The Electronic Farm"). They soon developed their own cult following, so an album was released on Vanguard in 1984 called Songs of Electronic Despair. Using wonky keyboards, funky beats and spacey synthesizer passages, The Sisters frequent use of terrible puns and android-inspired humor didn't quite fit in with the wry detachment of the New Wave music of the time and has since been relegated to the realms of pop oddity, occasionally resurfacing as samples in trance, techno and hip-hop ("Ray-Dee-Oh", Sss-x Minus One"). But as radio-plays they are highly entertaining and engaging, silly and goofy for sure but as The Android Sisters themselves say, "Dumb is Fun! " Includes 48 page booklet with song lyrics and illustrations for each song.
MPEG Stream: "Invasion"
MPEG Stream: "Robots Are Coming"
MPEG Stream: "Dumb Is Fun"
MPEG Stream: "Sss-X Minus One"

album cover ANTON MAIDEN s/t (Nihilism Records) cd 9.98
THIS IS CURRENTLY OUT OF PRINT OR OTHERWISE UNAVAILABLE TO US AT THE MOMENT, SO PLEASE DO NOT ORDER IT. SORRY.
We've listed this before, but it's finally available again after what seemed like an eternity. The fans clamored for more, and they will have more.
Anton Maiden was a 19 year old from Sweden who loved Iron Maiden, and to prove it, he stole computer midi files of his favorite Maiden tunes, and sang tunelessly, but energetically over them karaoke style. Like I need to tell you that this is absolutley fucking brilliant.
So if you missed out on this the first time, or you just want to upgrade your xeroxed cover for the new improved color copied cover, go for it.
Plus, it's no longer a cd-r, this is Anton Maiden in all his aluminum glory.

APPLE BRAINS Get Fruity!! (Slovenly) lp 13.98

album cover AQUARIUS BUTTONS 2 x 1" buttons 1.00
Hey, we just got another batch of AQ buttons made up...
Spread the word! Show the world your true aQ colors! COOL COOL COOL aQ buttons, now in 6 different vibrant color combinations. 5 new color combos (blue on pink, red on dark grey, dark blue on blue, orange on black, and yellowish green on dark green) and a popular one we had previously (brown on yellow).
TWO FOR $1!!! Colors are random, but buy enough and you'll be guaranteed to get 'em all! And of course all feature our spiffy James Gang style logo!! So stylish!

album cover ARBOGA TEENAGE RIOT Ugly Crew Demos (Daft Alliance) cd 7.98
This crazy slab of awesome noisy weirdness back in stock again!!!
Once again, we can just tell when a record is going to be a hit here. Something intangible that tells us that everyone is going to absolutely love (or absolutely hate but still need to own) this record. We felt it about the Conet Project. Hatebeak. Daddy's Curses. The Thai Elephant Orchestra. And now Arboga Teenage Riot.
The story goes like this. Our pal Nathan was on tour in Europe and while traveling through Sweden, two young ladies handed him a tape. The tape sat in the bottom of his bag, unlistened to for months. On his return to the states he remembered the tape, put it in the stereo, pushed play and had his mind promptly blown. And we'll have to admit we feel exactly the same way. Imagine ultra lo-fi, high energy techno / gabber, all four on the floor beats and cheesy synths, whistles and those kinds of melodies usually reserved for cheerleading competitions. "You All Ready For This?!?!" DONK DONK DONK DONK DONK DONK DONK! You know of what we speak. So now imagine two teenage girls, sometimes making up Swedish lyrics and chanting them in cute sing-songy harmonies, but more often, just screaming and growling hysterically in their best approximation of black metal vocals, sounding like they were just dubbed over the music on a boombox (which they probably were). This is the real digital hard core! Or more accurately ANALOG HARD CORE!!! If Alec Empire had any balls Arboga Teenage Riot would be the next DHR superstars. ATR take techno and black metal and riot grrl and DIY recording and turn it into a totally bizarre, fascinating, fun and funny masterpiece! The cover is pretty sharp too, a huge swamp beast thing emerging from the water, beneath a hot pink totally illegible Arboga Teenage Riot black metal style logo! Fuck yeah!
MPEG Stream: "Two"
MPEG Stream: "Three"

album cover BABY BUNNY SLIPPERS (Four Inch Feets by Cup) baby slippers 16.98
No, there isn't a new band called Baby Bunny Slippers (tho' maybe there should be!). These are actual baby slippers! Cozy cute polar fleece ones handmade by our own Cup. We wish she'd make some for us grown-up kids, but alas, not yet. These are size 0-6 months, about 4" long, and the ankle opening will stretch to 6". Current color available: chocolate brown with light pink ears (but feel free to ask about other color combos - custom orders are possible!). Adorable!

album cover BAHLU, KALI ...Takes The Forest Children On A Journey Of Cosmic Remembrance (Kismet) cd 17.98
This week the Kismet label brings us two rare sitar infused flower power psychsploitation oddities: The 1971 sitar and electronics groove of Holland's Okko (reviewed elsewhere on this list) and this far-out mindwarping "children's" record for the hippie acid kids: Kali Bahlu Takes The Forest Children On A Journey of Cosmic Remembrance from 1967.
Incredibly strange music indeed! This album is 4 long drugged out sitar, flute and gong meditations narrated by the child-like Kali Bahlu as she talks (a bit ditzily, we might add) to leprechauns, trolls, gnomes, witches, devils and moonchildren about comic consciousness or something to that effect. If anyone is familiar with Lucia Pamela, the eccentric bandleader and musician who made the hopped up Into Outer Space with Lucia Pamela album about an imaginary trip to the moon, Kali Bahlu sounds like Lucia Pamela if she had discovered marijuana, opium and acid at the same time and then soon after found God. We can definitely appreciate the exotic novelty of such a record, and this would be excellent and fun to sample in a DJ set or mixtape, but it might be a stretch to appreciate it for anything deeper than that.
MPEG Stream: "A Game Called Who Am I"
MPEG Stream: "Cosmic Remembrance"

album cover BAKER, JOHN The John Baker Tapes (Trunk) lp 16.98
THIS IS CURRENTLY OUT OF PRINT OR OTHERWISE UNAVAILABLE TO US AT THE MOMENT, SO PLEASE DO NOT ORDER IT. SORRY.
If 79 tracks over two volumes was a little too much to digest of John Baker's strange and jazzy electronique miniatures, than this vinyl version might be just the thing for you, as it condenses the most interesting 25 tracks from both volumes.
Delia Derbyshire may embody the otherworldly beauty and mystique behind the sounds of the BBC Radiophonic Workshop, but John Baker was its alchemical heart. Who else could take a simple tone from air being blown over a bottle and make it into a warm and electrifying panorama of melodious sound? In this LP, we find TV adverts, library pieces, jazzy soundtracks, radiophonic pieces and home recordings as well as an interview on how he made the sounds contained here, and his broadcast obituary. Baker had a knack for melody, and often imbued his mechanically made recordings with a warmth and playfulness that his more mathematically-inclined contemporaries lacked. The jazz and library compositions (made for the Southern and Peer International organizations) are similar in form and sound to Basil Kirchin and Michael Garrick (two other Trunk luminaries), urgently spright and pastoral, sometimes soft and spacey. Yet he could also establish veils of mystery and drawn out suspense in his carefully composed themes. Our favorite in particular is "Jazz Advert" a track we suspect Broadcast or Stereolab must have been very aware of. However, Baker's real talent is brevity. With most of the tracks contained here lasting under a minute, he evokes a complex and engaging sound world that is perfectly encapsulated within its miniscule timeframe.
Covering his entire musical career from 1954 up until his death in 1985, and exhaustively culled from boxes and boxes of often unmarked tapes, this is a great and essential purchase for anyone interested in early British electronic music.
MPEG Stream: "Codename"
MPEG Stream: "Vendetta: The Sugar Man"
MPEG Stream: "Jazz Advert"
MPEG Stream: "Piano Strokes"

album cover BAKER, JOHN The John Baker Tapes, Volume 1 (Trunk) cd 16.98
THIS IS CURRENTLY OUT OF PRINT OR OTHERWISE UNAVAILABLE TO US AT THE MOMENT, SO PLEASE DO NOT ORDER IT. SORRY.
Delia Derbyshire may embody the otherworldly beauty and mystique behind the sounds of the BBC Radiophonic Workshop, but John Baker was its alchemical heart. Who else could take a simple tone from air being blown over a bottle and make it into a warm and electrifying panorama of melodious sound? This is the first of two volumes of rare and unreleased pieces from the heyday of the BBC; this one covering the years 1963-1969. In it we find TV adverts, library pieces, jazzy soundtracks, radiophonic pieces and home recordings as well as interviews on how he made the sounds contained here. Baker had a knack for melody, and often imbibed his mechanically made recordings with a warmth and playfulness that his more mathematically inclined contemporaries lacked. Yet he could also establish veils of mystery and drawn out suspense in his carefully composed themes. But Baker's real talent is brevity. With most of the 49(!) tracks contained here lasting under a minute, he evokes a complex and engaging sound world that is perfectly encapsulated within its minute long timeframe. Baker is the first of the BBC Radiophonic Workshop composers to get such a retrospective overview. Hopefully this means we'll see more individual overviews from this important laboratory of recorded sound very soon.
MPEG Stream: "Big Ben News Theme"
MPEG Stream: "Codename"
MPEG Stream: "John Baker Interview"
MPEG Stream: "Tom Tom (Theme)"
MPEG Stream: "Vendetta: The Sugar Man"

album cover BAKER, JOHN The John Baker Tapes, Volume 2 (Trunk) cd 16.98
Volume number Two of BBC Radiophonic workshop guru, John Baker's amazing recorded output. This time focusing on his jazz compositions, homemade electronic experiments and library music, most of it largely unheard. Less small themes and interludes than volume one, which also means less of what he made exclusively for the BBC. But that should not deter the BRW fanatics out there from picking this up. It's even stranger because it's so varied, covering his entire musical career from 1954 up until his death in 1985. Exhaustively culled from boxes and boxes of often unmarked tapes, there's homemade musique concrete pieces made early in his musical development, as well as his early recordings with a jazz combo. The jazz and library compositions (made for the Southern and Peer International organizations) are similar in form and sound to Basil Kirchin and Michael Garrick (two other Trunk luminaries), urgently spright and pastoral, sometimes soft and spacey. There is also soundtrack music for an early Ridley Scott short film, Boy on A Bicycle, and advert music, one of which we suspect the group Broadcast must have been very aware of ("Jazz Advert"). A great and essential companion to Volume One, and for anyone interested in early British electronic music.
MPEG Stream: "Requioso "
MPEG Stream: "Jazz Advert"
MPEG Stream: "Power Source "
MPEG Stream: "Pot's 'n'Pans"
MPEG Stream: "Piano Strokes"

album cover BANANA SPLITS Doin' The Banana Split (Hanna-Barbera) 7" 6.98

BARRY, JOHN The EMI Years Volume One: 1957-1960 (Scamp) cd 14.98
John Barry's pioneering rock'n'roll and instrumental music recorded prior to his James Bond film scores. The Wire says: "John Barry is the toast of the Easy Listening revival...[His music] has inspired a generation of musicians, from Portishead to John Zorn...In-your-face electric guitar, surging big band swing and cool minor key 'anxiety' harmonies." 37 tracks, over 75 minutes of music, illustrated booklet.

BASHO, ROBBIE Bashovia (Takoma) cd 17.98
"In fact, as usual, when Robbie spoke to me, I didn't understand what in the world he was talking about" -- from John Fahey's liner notes to this new 72-minute compilation of Robbie Basho recordings from three of his albums (The Falconer's Arm I, The Falconer's Arm II, and Song of the Stallion) originally released on Fahey's Takoma label circa '67-'68. Basho (or Daniel J. Robinson, Jr., as he was known before he was realized, via a peyote trip, that he was a reincarnation of the 17th century Japanese poet Basho) was a Fahey protege of sorts, and, in seems -- just look at the cover -- a complete weirdo. Fahey's notes (written before he passed away last year, with this collection in mind) go on to call Basho a "goof" but they also celebrate his undeniable talent, vision, and originality. The booklet also includes Basho's original notes for each track.
Bashovia is composed of "Orientalist" raga-folk-guitar improv with some of the man's unique vocalizations on a few of the tracks -- but most are instrumental, darkly gorgeous and inspired examples of six-string and 12-string manipulation. Moreso than Fahey and other contemporaries, though, there's a super intense, almost scary, impassioned element to Basho's playing.
RealAudio clip: "The Falconer's Arm"
RealAudio clip: "The Haji"

BASHO, ROBBIE Guitar Soli (Takoma) cd 17.98
New Age guitar hero? Hmm. More freaky than that I think. Definitely into the mystical/exotic/"oriental" thing though. Here's a compilation of tracks from three LPs Basho released on John Fahey's Takoma label back in '65 and '66. Beautiful stuff from Seal of the Blue Lotus/Guitar Soli, The Grail and the Lotus, and even one track from Basho Sings (that's when it gets really weird). Brilliant steel string guitar action!

BASHO, ROBBIE The Voice of the Eagle (Comet / Vanguard) cd 16.98
THIS IS CURRENTLY OUT OF PRINT OR OTHERWISE UNAVAILABLE TO US AT THE MOMENT, SO PLEASE DO NOT ORDER IT. SORRY.
Wow. This is one ridiculous record. Solo 6 & 12 steel string guitar and singing by '60s acoustic guitar hero Robbie Basho (plus a little South Indian Log Drum accompaniment by Ramnad V. Raghavan). This record (a reissue of Basho's 1972 Vanguard debut) might have been almost passable (for solo proto-nu-age guitar in the usual mode of Basho and his contemporaries Fahey and Kottke) had Robbie not opened his mouth to moan pseudo-Native American vocal stylings (with similarly themed lyrics that may have been quite sincere but come across as very silly). It's only a surprise that the Mad Deadly Worldwide Communist Gangster Computer God label (of "Celebrities At Their Worst" fame) didn't get around to re-issuing this themselves. Indeed, although the absurd, wavering vocals might ruin one's enjoyment of Basho's fine guitar playing, they also really do make this a hilarious listen. Connoisseurs of the weird/kitsch should check this out, it's like a cross between "Ein Wigwam" and a Fahey album. For fans of the Sun City Girls, Yahowah, Telly Savalas, and other absurdities. Allan finds this record to be quite enjoyable on those grounds, and once you're done laughing, you'll see that some of it is quite beautiful and Tim Buckley-esque as well. "I am the voice of thu-u-und-rrrrr" etc. Reissued in a nice mini-LP style sleeve.
RealAudio clip: "Voice of the Eagle"

BASHO, ROBBIE The Voice of the Eagle (Comet / Vanguard) lp 21.00
THIS IS CURRENTLY OUT OF PRINT OR OTHERWISE UNAVAILABLE TO US AT THE MOMENT, SO PLEASE DO NOT ORDER IT. SORRY.
Wow. This is one ridiculous record. Solo 6 & 12 steel string guitar and singing by '60s acoustic guitar hero Robbie Basho (plus a little South Indian Log Drum accompaniment by Ramnad V. Raghavan). This record (a reissue of Basho's 1972 Vanguard debut) might have been almost passable (for solo proto-nu-age guitar in the usual mode of Basho and his contemporaries Fahey and Kottke) had Robbie not opened his mouth to moan pseudo-Native American vocal stylings (with similarly themed lyrics that may have been quite sincere but come across as very silly). It's only a surprise that the Mad Deadly Worldwide Communist Gangster Computer God label (of "Celebrities At Their Worst" fame) didn't get around to re-issuing this themselves. Indeed, although the absurd, wavering vocals might ruin one's enjoyment of Basho's fine guitar playing, they also really do make this a hilarious listen. Connoisseurs of the weird/kitsch should check this out, it's like a cross between "Ein Wigwam" and a Fahey album. For fans of the Sun City Girls, Yahowah, Telly Savalas, and other absurdities. Allan finds this record to be quite enjoyable on those grounds, and once you're done laughing, you'll see that some of it is quite beautiful and Tim Buckley-esque as well. "I am the voice of thu-u-und-rrrrr" etc. Reissued in a nice mini-LP style sleeve.

album cover BATHTUB SHITTER Bathtub Shitter Xmas (tUMULt) 3"cd 4.98
Every kid dreads finding a lump of coal in their stocking come Christmas morning, so much so that many spend the weeks or months before the big day doing their very best to ensure their spot on Santa's 'Nice' list. No more teasing the siblings, no more grousing about yardwork, cheerfully doing all their chores, eating all their vegetables, doing all their homework. Whatever it takes. But now kids have something else entirely to worry about. Sure finding a lump of coal is a drag, but how about finding your stocking full of shit!! Well around here, that's something to be excited about. Better prepare yourselves, cuz Brown Santa is coming to town. And who better to fill our hearts with Christmas cheer and regale us with tales of Brown Santa than Japan's shit obsessed grind lords Bathtub Shitter? That's right, it's a Bathtub Shitter Christmas. Record! Forget your Nat King Cole, and Perry Como, and Bing Crosby, and Barbara Striesand, this is the only Christmas record you need! And it's conveniently stocking sized, a cute lil' 3" cd, jam packed with furious grind, howling pummeling brutality, and lots and lots of shit.
For those of you new to the wonderful world of Bathtub Shitter, let's refer to a past review that perfectly and succinctly describes the Bathtub Shitter Experience:
Imagine some strange mix of Drop Dead, the Boredoms, Brutal Truth, CSSO, death metal, grindcore, and well....um...shit! Crunchy riffs swing from almost-surf rock, to Zeppelin groove to metallic crunch, but spend most of their time in grind mode, splattered and speeding out of control. Crazy drumming, farting bass and some wicked guitar noodling add to the sick sonic stew. But the vocals are where things get really weird. The main vocals are of the burping, grunting, cookie monster death metal variety, belching out indecipherable tales of shit and shitting, but their foil is a squealing, squeaking little girl of a man voice, sounding either like a babblingly hysterical middle age housewife shrieking at the top of her lungs or a horror movie cheerleader being eviscerated, screaming in that terrified way only dying cheerleaders in horror movies do. The two vocal styles swing and switch and battle and butt heads like some sort of bastard grindcore Beastie Boys. Or imagine Chuck D as Chris Barnes in his Cannibal Corpse days and Flavor Flav as the aforementioned shrieking dead cheerleader. With the everpresent S1Ws made up of members of S.O.D. and Angelcorpse. Other sorts of vocals are occasionally introduced like the 'dog barking underwater' and the 'asthmatic yodel'. The truly strange part is that all of the various vocals come from the very same guy!
Speaking of vocals, our Bathtub Shitter Xmas starts off with the a cappella "Brown Santa", a confusing and brilliantly bizarre series of shrieks and gurgles, grunts and wheezes. This guy could very well give Jaap Blonk a run for his money. Track two is the reverential hymn "Holy Shit", a grinding blast of Japanoise flecked surf-sludge-grind-rock, with insane squiggly guitars, chugging downtuned riffs, blasting octopoidal drumming and of course the 'Shitter hi / lo, shriek / growl vocal battle is in full effect. And finally, what better way to finish things off, than with a classic holiday chestnut, this time roasted over roaring hellfire!! WOOOAHHHAAAA. "Little Drummer Boy" turned into a sludgy slab of slow motion drone metal, huge churning guitars, the only glimpse of the original being the martial snare drum rat a tat tat-ing beneath all that sludge and of course the impossibly guttural growling cookie monster vocals spewing out a barely recognizable "parumpapumpum".
Wow! Now if that doesn't sound like something everyone would want to find in their stocking or under the tree Christmas morning then we don't know what does!
"We're dreaming of a... Brown Christmas!"
MPEG Stream: "Holy Shit"
MPEG Stream: "Brown Santa (A Cappella Version)"

BAXTER, LES Black Sunday / Baron Blood (Citadel) cd 14.98
THIS IS CURRENTLY OUT OF PRINT OR OTHERWISE UNAVAILABLE TO US AT THE MOMENT, SO PLEASE DO NOT ORDER IT. SORRY.
Mostly known for his exotica work, Les Baxter did compose a few stirring horror scores. "Black Sunday" and "Baron Blood" (both from the early 60s) are blood-and-thunder compositions for dissonant chords of cymbals, timpani, and brass. According to the liner notes: "It scarred a generation."

BAXTER, LES Cry of the Banshee / Edgar Allan Poe Suite (Citadel) cd 14.98
THIS IS CURRENTLY OUT OF PRINT OR OTHERWISE UNAVAILABLE TO US AT THE MOMENT, SO PLEASE DO NOT ORDER IT. SORRY.
"Whatever caused this, some said that during this particular passage they thought they saw Satan materialize - others were not sure just who the spiritual image was, but I feel I must warn those who might have a fear of the supernatural of the possibility of such an occurance" - Les Baxter, referring to the unexplained mysteries which were perported to occur when listening to his scores of "Cry of the Banshee". Truely scary stuff. Also featured on this disc are his score for "The Edgar Allan Poe Suite" and John Cacavas' "Horror Express."

album cover BAXTER, LES Fruit Of Dreams (El Records) cd 16.98
You usually know that you are either an obsessive music addict or totally eccentric or hell both when Les Baxter records start making their way into your collection. And we are the first to admit that most of us fit in those categories, so yes, of course we love the king of exotica, Les Baxter. Most of you are familiar with Baxter but maybe you didn't know that he was the in house conductor and arranger for Captiol records in the 50's making hits for folks like Nat King Cole. Always searching for new instruments, bigger orchestras and sounds filled with exclamation points and a whole lot of flavor, Baxter became a perfect fit for motion pictures as he would go on to score over 120 films with his specialty being Roger Corman films and teenage exploitation flicks. The Fruit Of Dreams combines two of his late 50s and early 60's albums on which he travels to "exotic" places in the world and brings those sounds back to people's suburban living rooms. Something so totally charming about the naivety and dramatic flair of these recordings. With titles like "Hong Kong Cable Car" , "Harem Silks From Bombay", "The Feathered Serpent of the Aztecs" you know this is that great over the top exploitive stylistic travelogue that you can't help but get swept up by. Brilliant and twisted minds like George Kuchar, John Waters, Beck and Jello Biafra all count themselves as unabashed Les Baxter fans...and so do we.
MPEG Stream: "Hong Kong Cable Car"
MPEG Stream: "Harem Silks From Bombay"
MPEG Stream: "Pyramid Of The Sun"

BAXTER, LES The Lost Episode (Dionysus) cd 13.98
Previously unreleased. From an old tv show.

BAXTER, LES The Lost Episode (Dionysus) 10" 10.98
THIS IS CURRENTLY OUT OF PRINT OR OTHERWISE UNAVAILABLE TO US AT THE MOMENT, SO PLEASE DO NOT ORDER IT. SORRY.
Previously unreleased. From an old tv show.

album cover BEAKS PLINTH Kai Kohola Leo (Gigante Sound) cd-r 6.98
Jared Blum is back with a new alter ego - Beaks Plinth! In case you didn't guess from the title, it is a Hawaiian themed project. That said, don't be expecting warm sandy beaches, luscious fruity concoctions and gently swaying palm trees. Nope, instead imagine yourself in the depths of a not-so-dormant island volcano, molten lava creeping forth and sizzling in the heady ocean mist!
It's like a tropical fever dream in which the shadows of giant tiki figures loom and ominous giant birds of prey menace and peck at you from above. It's a bit murky and mysterious with sounds smeared into dank cavernous echoes. In fact, we might suggest that the dozen foreboding soundscapes on Kai Kohola Leo meld quite nicely in between aQ faves Nurse With Wound's Salt Marie Celeste and Coelacanth's Glass Sponge. Recommended.
MPEG Stream: "Voices Of The Lagoon"
MPEG Stream: "The Stringer Bells"
MPEG Stream: "Wind Speak "

album cover BEAKS PLINTH Kai Kohola Leo (Gigante Sound) cd-r 6.98

MPEG Stream: "Voices Of The Lagoon"
MPEG Stream: "The Stringer Bells"
MPEG Stream: "Wind Speak "

album cover BEATALLICA Sgt. Hetfield's Motor Breath Pub Band (Oglio) cd 16.98
Yep, you guessed it... Beatles songs rocked out Metallica style! Like us, you might've marvelled at Beatallica back in 2001 when a number of their mp3s were making the rounds around the thing called the Internet. Over the years they've received the blessing from the Metallica camp, but were threatened with legal action by Sony (who hold a major chunk of The Beatles publishing rights).
This is the first time their tunes have been available in the retail arena, so it seems nothing further came of that scare.
Anyhoo, 'twas funny then and it's funny now. Don't know if we really need a full album's worth. We got our yuks'n'chortles out after a couple tunes, but we do give these Milwaukee-ites kudos for their stamina and gusto and good taste in music. A hoot in small doses.
MPEG Stream: "Sandman"
MPEG Stream: "Helvester Of Skelter"

album cover BEAUSOLEIL, BOBBY Mantra (Qbico) Picture Disc 25.00
THIS IS CURRENTLY OUT OF PRINT OR OTHERWISE UNAVAILABLE TO US AT THE MOMENT, SO PLEASE DO NOT ORDER IT. SORRY.

album cover BENIGHTED LEAMS Ferln Centesms (Supernal) cd 15.98
THIS IS CURRENTLY OUT OF PRINT OR OTHERWISE UNAVAILABLE TO US AT THE MOMENT, SO PLEASE DO NOT ORDER IT. SORRY.
THE RETURN OF POSSIBLY THE MOST RETARDED BLACK METAL BAND EVER!!! That may not sound like the ideal way to start a review that's goal is to convince you just how fucking crucial this record is. But then maybe you're not familiar with Benighted Leams or our absolute, possibly-misguided worship of their last two (sadly, out of print) records. Benighted Leams is another grim, cult, one man black metal band, but that's where any similarities end. Benighted Leams are so weird and so damaged and so completely fucked it boggles the mind. On past records, the rule of the day was utter chaos, levels would fluctuate EXTREMELY, with the vocals so high in the mix they threatened to blow your speakers, the drumming would wander from almost blast beats to clumsy midtempo stumbling, guitars were a murky muddy blackened beast, riffs smeared into fuzzy rooooaaaars and the whole thing a dizzingly nightmarish blackmetal soundscape and a completely baffling trip through the a dark musical minefield. We're happy to report that very little has changed. Could have something to do with the fact that the music on Ferln Centesms was composed 7+ years ago and the lyrics written over the past 4 years. Not that the lyrics matter all that much, as the vocals this time around are buried and totally indecipherable (enough so that a few people here thought it was instrumental). This is droning buzzing, stumbling mid tempo blackness. All the songs seem to almost follow some sort of template, a minute or two of blasting buzz, then a minute or two of hushed gurgling forestdrone, and then more buzzing. Very hypnotic and repetitive. And did we mention weird? The blurb we initially read about this new record compared it to Voivod and we must admit we were pretty skeptical. However, the songs are indeed surprisingly reminiscent of classic Voivod, jagged and complex, with convoluted song structures and weird arrangements. However, to be fair, it sounds much more like some random, slightly inept garage band covering Voivod's Dimension Hatross! So, to understand Benighted Leams, imagine the weirdest 4-track oustsider metal you've ever heard, mix in a stumbling, blackened Voivod, include song titles like "The Ormod Liss Of Transuranical Nortivagations" or "Sullen Slumber Of Swooning Gloom" and a record called Ferln Centesms, include gorgeous forest-y artwork and a band photo that appears to be Mr. Leams himself captured in mid stride, running through the snow, and strangely headless (?). Wow. We LOVE this band. Some (just some) of you might too...
MPEG Stream: "The Ormod Liss Of Transuranical Nortivagations"
MPEG Stream: "Sullen Slumber Of Swooning Gloom"

album cover BETTER BEATLES, THE Mercy Beat (Hook or Crook) cd 11.98
A couple lists ago we had the Easy Beatles compilation... now we've got some not-so-easy Beatles! This reissue will drive some folks crazy, but we're lovin' it. Hooray for East Bay label Hook Or Crook for getting their hands on this great outsider classic out of Omaha, Nebraska circa 1981. The Better Beatles played Beatles songs with a naive and fucked up post-punk charm. While there are no shortages of Beatles covers and tribute records, none have been made that suit our bizarre tastes better than this one! With primitive electronics that sounded like they could break at any moment and a detached delivery that gives these songs a feeling somewhere between cold wave, new wave and no wave. Not far off from what The Flying Lizards were doing around this same time but much more out of the loop and less self-conscious.
It's super interesting to see how while being one of the most famous and mainstream appreciated bands of all time, the Beatles have spawned so many outsider fanatics from Daniel Johnston to Bobb Trimble. What makes The Better Beatles so damn cool is that they truly made these songs something else, it's not just novelty (though that is a factor), there is a lot of intensity in their delivery. They might have been joking about being "better" but maybe they meant it, they certainly sound like they mean it when they sing John and Paul's lyrics, which are often the only recognizable parts of the songs. We can't count the times we've had a customer in the store get reeled in by this record without even knowing that it's Beatles covers and when they find out they say something like 'I don't even like The Beatles but this is fucking cool!' and even for those of us who love the Beatles as well we can agree, this IS fucking cool!
MPEG Stream: "Penny Lane"
MPEG Stream: "I'm Down"

album cover BETTER BEATLES, THE Mercy Beat (Hook or Crook) lp 14.98
THIS IS CURRENTLY OUT OF PRINT OR OTHERWISE UNAVAILABLE TO US AT THE MOMENT, SO PLEASE DO NOT ORDER IT. SORRY.
A couple lists ago we had the Easy Beatles compilation... now we've got some not-so-easy Beatles! This reissue will drive some folks crazy, but we're lovin' it. Hooray for East Bay label Hook Or Crook for getting their hands on this great outsider classic out of Omaha, Nebraska circa 1981. The Better Beatles played Beatles songs with a naive and fucked up post-punk charm. While there are no shortages of Beatles covers and tribute records, none have been made that suit our bizarre tastes better than this one! With primitive electronics that sounded like they could break at any moment and a detached delivery that gives these songs a feeling somewhere between cold wave, new wave and no wave. Not far off from what The Flying Lizards were doing around this same time but much more out of the loop and less self-conscious.
It's super interesting to see how while being one of the most famous and mainstream appreciated bands of all time, the Beatles have spawned so many outsider fanatics from Daniel Johnston to Bobb Trimble. What makes The Better Beatles so damn cool is that they truly made these songs something else, it's not just novelty (though that is a factor), there is a lot of intensity in their delivery. They might have been joking about being "better" but maybe they meant it, they certainly sound like they mean it when they sing John and Paul's lyrics, which are often the only recognizable parts of the songs. We can't count the times we've had a customer in the store get reeled in by this record without even knowing that it's Beatles covers and when they find out they say something like 'I don't even like The Beatles but this is fucking cool!' and even for those of us who love the Beatles as well we can agree, this IS fucking cool!
MPEG Stream: "Penny Lane"
MPEG Stream: "I'm Down"

album cover BEYOND DAWN The Righteous Underground (Duplicate Records / Purple Soil) 2cd 19.98
Ahhh, how nice is it to see the name Beyond Dawn again? One of the great unsung heroes of the '90s Norwegian metal scene, Beyond Dawn never quite got the accolades they deserved . Maybe because even in their early heavier days they were a hard band to pin a genre to. Maybe because they were one of the first metal bands in Norway to abandon metal altogether for more experimental territory. Maybe because every record sounded so drastically different than the last. Maybe it's because they almost never played outside of their native country. Or maybe it's just because they had, like, A TON of trombone. Whatever the reason, a band who should have enjoyed a career as illustrious and respected as their countrymates Ulver (who the band played some of their earliest shows with in 1993) instead dissolved over a decade ago with the most cult of followings. But thankfully Duplicate Records has done all fans of heavy downer weirdness a great service in releasing this retrospective. But in classically unpredictable fashion, this isn't a greatest hits package so much as it is a two cd chronological collection of odds & sods: album demos, alternate mixes, outtakes and live recordings. Despite how that may sound, it works surprisingly well as an introduction to this band's surreal shadowy world, touching neatly on everything that made them interesting. Even in their earlier days of brooding gothic doom there was a touch the modern and avant garde, a somber and mournful dirge in the tradition of early Anathema complimented perfectly by Espen Ingierd's vocals, deep and commanding but strangely emotionless and distant, at times a dead ringer for Michael Gira. And like we mentioned earlier there's that trombone, which is never far away, and man, if Beyond Dawn don't make a good argument for the trombone being the saddest sounding instrument of all time (in fact this release inspired this topic of conversation in the store the other day: Why don't more metal bands use trombones???), but at the same time it lends a certain regal timeless quality to their music that really sets it apart. The second disc tackles the 2000's when the band left metal behind entirely, and began flirting with downtempo electronics, nocturnal dub, post punk and melancholy pop. While it's aesthetically a much quieter approach, it was no less emotionally captivating, engrossing and at times devastating. And while the band certainly evolved drastically as they progressed, this collection provides a nice way to follow the threads that ran through the band's sound, especially the general mood they always seemed to conjure up no matter what genres they were experimenting with: a sort of lonely distinguished elegance. Nocturnal and shimmering, depressive yet strangely proud, like putting on your best suit in preparation for the gallows. Highly recommended for fans of Vaura, Swans, Beastmilk, Ulver, and all things strange, sad and loud.
MPEG Stream: "I Am A Drug"
MPEG Stream: "When Beauty Dies"
MPEG Stream: "Cigarette"
MPEG Stream: "Addictions Are Private"

album cover BIKNEVA Even Stars Burn Out On Their Own (Big John) cd 12.98
Jeepers, we've an abundance of Bikneva for you! Two equally lovely cds, their self-titled debut from 2002 and this, their second slightly more outerspace sounding full length. Ultra lush, atmospheric keyboard-laden music that occasionally drifts into easy listenin' lounge territory. Not in a bad (i.e, cheesy) way though! Not at all. I've also seen Bikneva listed online under 'ambient' and 'new age"' but I can't really say that either of those tags fit. Each smooooth, languid track soothes in its own moody way that's often very reminiscent of Angelo Badalamenti's gorgeous work on the Twin Peaks soundtrack. You almost expect Julee Cruise to flutter in with her angelic vocals, but instead there's a gentlemanly chorus of ba-da-ba's in the track "I'm In I'm Walking". Very nice!
MPEG Stream: "Guncleaning"
MPEG Stream: "I'm In I'm Walking"

album cover BIKNEVA s/t (Big John) cd 12.98
Jeepers, we've an abundance of Bikneva for you! Two equally lovely cds, their second full length called Even Stars Burn Out On Their Own and this, their self-titled debut from 2002. Ultra lush, atmospheric mostly keyboard-laden (organ and piano) music that occasionally drifts into easy listenin' lounge territory. Not in a bad (i.e, cheesy) way though! Not at all. I've also seen Bikneva listed online under 'ambient' and 'new age"' but I can't really say that either of those tags fit. Each smooooth, languid track soothes in its own moody way that's often very reminiscent of Angelo Badalamenti's gorgeous work on the Twin Peaks soundtrack. You almost expect Julee Cruise to flutter in with her angelic vocals, instead you get a gentlemanly chorus, some loudspeaker spoken word samples, maybe some gentle banjo and guitar as well as static-y crackles that sound like dust on your turntable needle. Very nice!
MPEG Stream: "Seed The Clouds"

album cover BIRDFLESH / HATEBEAK Happy Death / The Thing That Should Not Beak (Relapse) 7" 3.50
THIS IS CURRENTLY OUT OF PRINT OR OTHERWISE UNAVAILABLE TO US AT THE MOMENT, SO PLEASE DO NOT ORDER IT. SORRY.
Finally! The return of our favorite parrot fronted grind metal outfit, Hatebeak! And as if realizing that a bird squawking along to death metal might be a one trick pony, the band has gone and mixed things up, turning their jokey avian death metal into something way more weird and damaged and in the long run, an even better (and more musically complex) joke.
It's still high concept: Waldo the parrot is lead vocalist for the band Hatebeak, a play on the band Hatebreed we can only assume. This time, the cover is some horrible creature (Cthulhu we presume) with a parrot perched on its shoulder. Titled "The Thing That Should Not Beak" coupled with the track "Hellbent For Feathers" (Metallica and Judas Priest jokes respectively for the metallically dim out there) and the Hatebeak logo is done in the style of the Relapse Records logo... it's all very funny, metal nerd inside jokes, but the thing is, as a band, Hatebeak totally shred!
The two tracks are bookended by what ends up being a parrot prank call, but in between it's raging, complex, super technical grinding death metal. Another one of those bands that had they ditched the whole bird on vocals angle, could probably be huge! And this time it's not just regular old bird squawks and squeaks, Waldo's 'vocals' are bizarre, obviously overdubbed, they go from strange almost talking, to screeches, to weird guttural almost death metal vocals, all tangled up amidst insanely brutal, super stop start grinding metal mayhem. Awesome!
On the B side are Swedish goof grinders Birdflesh, chosen for their monicker as much as their sound we'd assume, but sonically, they are the perfect match, a whole bunch of songs crammed onto their side, fast and furious, technical and brutal, and just a little bit goofy, like their bizarre, costumed band photos on the cover.
Pressed on swirled lime green vinyl and as with most things like this, extremely limited!

album cover BJORKK, HENRIK NORDVARGR Vitagen (Essence Music) cd 14.98
THIS IS CURRENTLY OUT OF PRINT OR OTHERWISE UNAVAILABLE TO US AT THE MOMENT, SO PLEASE DO NOT ORDER IT. SORRY.
Finally back in stock!
The newest release on AQ pal Uirajara's stellar Essence label, home to the awesome dark ambience of Wolfskin, the splattery noise onslaught of Merzbow's Sha Mo 3000, and soon to release the Brazilian version of Boris's most recent Mabuta No Ura, with completely different artwork and extra music, comes the latest in a recent spate of releases from Scandanavian dark ambient technician Henrik Nordvargr Bjorkk, who also records as Folkstorm, Toroidh and began his journey down the darkened path with his black ambient outfit MZ412. This newest release is as dark and bleak and sonically terrifying as they come, which is quite odd considering Vitagen is dedicated to his daughter Indra (the dedication reads: Dedicated to Indra, the light which guides me through the darkness), the cover features all antique photos of little girls, and the super limited deluxe version (now out of print, so don't ask) even came with a handmade porcelain doll. But there is nothing loving or childlike here, unless of course it's meant to be the musical probing of the darkest recess of a child's mind, all monsters and nightmares, things that go bump in the night, shadows outside the window, demons waiting in the closet, all brought to life by disembodied rumbles, slow building industrial swells of shivering blackness, ominous smears of demonic minimalism, and occasional cracks and crashes, like brief bursts of lightning illuminating the terrors hidden in the night, just for a moment, but that moment is enough to fill your soul with dread as you are plunged back into utter darkness. And while the sound of Vitagen is definitely brutal and barren and hauntingly grim, it's also quite beautiful, and even soothing at times, with small stretches of tranquil ambience scattered here and there, melodies slowed down and pulled apart into dark shapes that sort of drift and hover, a nice balance between the hellishly malevolent and the soothingly serene. Beautifully packaged in a six panel, embossed cardboard sleeve.
MPEG Stream: "Steril "
MPEG Stream: "Voidum"

album cover BLANKETSHIP Klangwunder / The Sound Of Fun Surrounds You (Gigante Sound) cd-r 9.98
Following up last year's Teen Sounds, SF's Blanketship comes cruisin' along with more delightful aural collage adventures. This time things are a bit more drivin', maybe a bit darker and more aggressive. And unlike many of his past recordings which kept the listener constantly teetering off-kilter with their rapid fire juggling together of puzzle piece samples and mad rhythms, the nine tracks that comprise The Sound Of Fun Surrounds You has a few longer stretches that your ears and toes can catch a grasp of and groove along to for a few bars at least. But that's not to say this cd-r is without its fair share of surprise bursts and giggly bits, those come in spades on the Klangwunder half! Those eight tracks were composed with like-minded People Like Us on WFMU! Always a deliriously good time!
MPEG Stream: "Viva Butterfly"
MPEG Stream: "The St. John River"

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 »

top of page