Indie Exclusive Releases
Omoiyari is Kishi Bashi's fourth album, following the acclaimed 151a (2012), Lighght (2014), and Sonderlust (2016). Channeling the hard-learned lessons of history, Omoiyari reflects the turbulent socio-political atmosphere of present day America. "I was shocked when I saw white supremacy really starting to show it's teeth again in America," Kishi Bashi says. "My parents are immigrants, they came to the United States from Japan post-World War II. As a minority I felt very insecure for the first time in my adult life in this country. I think that was the real trigger for this project." Kishi Bashi recognized parallels between the current U.S. adminis- tration's constant talk of walls and bans, and the xenophobic anxieties that led to the forced internment of Japanese-Americans in the months following the attack on Pearl Harbor. So he immersed himself in that period, visiting former prison sites and listening to the stories of survivors, while developing musical concepts along the way. The unique creative process behind Omoiyari has been documented in a film scheduled for release in early 2020. "I didn't want this project to be about history, but rather the importance of history, and the lessons we can learn," Kishi Bashi reflects. "I gravitated toward themes of empathy, compassion, and understanding as a way to overcome fear and intolerance. But I had trouble finding an English title for the piece. Omoiyari is a Japanese word. It doesn't necessarily translate as empathy, but it refers to the idea of creating compassion towards other people by thinking about them. I think the idea of omoiyari is the single biggest thing that can help us overcome aggression and conflict." The strong conceptual elements of Omoiyari are driven by Kishi Bashi's captivating musical score. Stepping away from his past loop-based production model, he embraced a more collaborative approach when recording, and for the first time included contributions from other musicians, such as Mike Savino (aka Tall Tall Trees) on banjo and bass, and Nick Ogawa (aka Takenobu) on cello. Kishi Bashi's spectacular trademark violin soundscapes are still an essential component of his sound, but the focus of Omoiyari is centered squarely on it's songs. While the theme of Omoiyari is rooted in 1940s America, the album's message is timeless. In exploring the emotional lives of the innocent Japanese-Americans who were unjustly incarcerated, Kishi Bashi hopes to nurture a sense of empathy, or omoiyari, in all who hear the album.
David Hillyard & The Rocksteady 7 have become one of the most prominent rocksteady groups based in the United States over the last several decades. Band leader David Hillyard (The Slackers, Hepcat) has assembled a rotating team of expert players for both studio sessions and live shows, featuring such recurring members as Larry McDonald (Carlos Malcolm, Lee Scratch Perry, Toots & the Maytals) and Eddie Ocampo. Playtime is group's first official record, originally released in 1999 by Hellcat Records. This lively mix of American jazz, world music, and roots is coming to vinyl for the first time in 2019.
Vinyl: $19.98 PRE ORDER
4-track, picture disc single from the rarities release, "The Other Sides"
It was on a mountainside in Cumbria that the first whispers of Cate Le Bon’s fifth studio album poked their buds above the earth. “There’s a strange romanticism to going a little bit crazy and playing the piano to yourself and singing into the night,” she says, recounting the year living solitarily in the Lake District which gave way to Reward. By day, ever the polymath, Le Bon painstakingly learnt to make solid wood tables, stools and chairs from scratch; by night she looked to a second-hand Meers — the first piano she had ever owned — for company, “windows closed to absolutely everyone”, and accidentally poured her heart out. The result is an album every bit as stylistically varied, surrealistically-inclined and tactile as those in the enduring outsider’s back catalogue, but one that is also intensely introspective and profound; her most personal to date.
Vinyl: $24.98 PRE ORDER
Amyl and The Sniffers are a grimy pub rock band from Melbourne, Australia. The band take their cues from a diverse mix of hard rock, Aussie punk, and country. They set out to have as much fun as possible and scared up a whole lot of fans along the way. AATS were brought to ATO’s attention when they opened for King Gizzard. The Sniffers have since been selling out headlining dates in the US and have sold through three pressings of their "Some Mutts" single. Their full-length album releases 5/24.
Vinyl: $29.98 PRE ORDER
With their latest album 'Full Upon Her Burning Lips', Earth have stripped away the layers and auxiliary instrumentation that embellished some of their previous records and have deconstructed their dynamic to the core duo of Dylan Carlson on guitar and bass and Adrienne Davies on drums and percussion. The ten tracks on 'Full Upon Her Burning Lips' came together in bits and pieces. Some songs stemmed from a handful of musical phrases and repeating patterns concocted in moments of downtime during their 2017 tour schedule, while others came from rehearsals in the months leading up to recording or in moments of divine inspiration in the studio. The record was engineered, mixed, and mastered by longtime associate Mell Dettmer at Studio Soli. Knowing their process and their sound, Dettmer helped harness, shape, and document the songs in a manner that highlights the depth of Earths sparse components, capturing a hidden dimension to the patterns and creating a kaleidoscope of auditory activity.
Limited Red Vinyl, 45th Anniversary Edition of DIAMOND DOGS featuring the 2016 remaster.
New Vinyl: $29.98 $28.98 Buy
I Am Easy To Find is The National’s eighth studio album and the follow-up to 2017’s GRAMMY®-award winning release Sleep Well Beast. A companion short film with the same name will also be released with music by The National and inspired by the album. The film was directed by Academy Award-nominated director Mike Mills (20th Century Women, Beginners), and starring Academy Award Winner Alicia Vikander. Mills, along with the band, is credited as co-producer of the album, which was recorded at Long Pond, Hudson Valley, NY with vocal contributions from Sharon Van Etten, Brooklyn Youth Chorus, Lisa Hannigan, Mina Tindle and more. On September 3, 2017, director Mike Mills emailed Matt Berninger to introduce himself and in very short order, the most ambitious project of the National’s nearly 20-year career was born and plans for a hard-earned vacation died. The Los Angeles-based filmmaker was coming off his third feature, 20th Century Women, and was interested in working with the band on...something. A video maybe. Berninger, already a fan of Mills’ films, not only agreed to collaborate, he essentially handed over the keys to the band’s creative process. The result is I Am Easy to Find, a 24-minute film by Mills starring Alicia Vikander, and I Am Easy to Find, a 68-minute album by the National. The former is not the video for the latter; the latter is not the soundtrack to the former. The two projects are, as Mills calls them, “Playfully hostile siblings that love to steal from each other”—they share music and words and DNA and impulses and a vision about what it means to be human in 2019, but don’t necessarily need one another. The movie was composed like a piece of music; the music was assembled like a film, by a film director. The frontman and natural focal point was deliberately and dramatically side staged in favor of a variety of female voices, nearly all of whom have long been in the group’s orbit. It is unlike anything either artist has ever attempted and also totally in line with how they’ve created for much of their careers.
FULL OF HELL make their Relapse debut with their most explosive album to date, Weeping Choir. Dynamic, pissed, and wholly urgent, the highly anticipated Weeping Choir is a definitive statement of intent by one of the underground’s most dynamic and virulent entities. FULL OF HELL have once again culled the extreme elements from hardcore, metal, and power electronics to redefine darkness and sheer brutality. Distorted guitars, and ominous, disparate electronics grind and gnash against rapid-fire drumming, as FULL OF HELL take themes of religion, loss, hatred, and set them ablaze. Recorded by the critically acclaimed Kurt Ballou at GodCity Studio, Weeping Choir sees FULL OF HELL fully unleashed. Abrasive, confrontational, none equal!
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New Vinyl: $21.98 $20.98 Buy
Mac DeMarco returns with his newest album, Here Comes the Cowboy, the first album to be released on his new independent label, Mac’s Record Label. The album features lead single “Nobody,” and is available on May 10.
The Mystery Lights's sophomore album on Daptone's rock subsidiary, Wick Records, finds the group digging deeper into their well of eclectic influences, enriching their sound without echoing the past. It mixes the eerie, insistent synth sounds of groups like The Normal and Suicide, the energy and swagger of punks golden age, the pop sensibility of The Kinks, and the stark, deliberate execution of Television. The Mystery Lights are taking their idiosyncratic brand of rock and roll to dizzying new heights.
Vinyl: $27.98 PRE ORDER
12" Vinyl 2LP, 4th side etch, split gold and yellow colored. Limited to 500.
The Saint Of Lost Causesis the 8th album from American roots troubadour, Justin Townes Earle. Earle’s latest album finds a songwriter and artist who is unflinching and unequivocal in his truth. When writing this album, Earle focused on a different America—the disenfranchised and the downtrodden, the oppressed and the oppressors, the hopeful and the hopeless. There’s the drugstore-cowboy-turned-cop-killer praying for forgiveness (“Appalachian Nightmare”) and the common Michiganders persevering through economic and industrial devastation (“Flint City Shake It”); the stuck mother dreaming of a better life on the right side of the California tracks (“Over Alameda”) and the Cuban man in New York City weighed down by a world of regret (“Ahi Esta Mi Nina”); the “used up” soul desperate to get to New Orleans (“Ain’t Got No Money”) and the “sons of bitches” in West Virginia poisoning the land and sea (“Don’t Drink the Water”). These are individuals and communities in every corner of the country, struggling through the ordinary—and sometimes extraordinary—circumstances of everyday life.
Since their inception in 2008, Defeater have stood apart as storytellers in the world of hardcore. Hailing from Boston, Massachusetts, the band’s lineup consists of Derek Archambault (vocals), Adam Crowe (guitar), Jake Woodruff (guitar), Joe Longobardi (drums) and Mike Poulin (bass). They have toured with the likes of La Dispute, Comeback Kid, and August Burns Red. Defeater will be the band’s fifth studio album
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Inclusivity is at the heart of Barrie, the Brooklyn five-piece made of Barrie Lindsay, Dominic Apa, Spurge Carter, Sabine Holler and Noah Prebish. And on their debut LP Happy To Be Here, their multidimensional take on classic pop sounds awake and present, like a group that’s daydreaming but firmly there with one another. Barrie, the band, is primarily her project; on the record, which she co-produced with Jake Aron (Snail Mail, Solange, Grizzly Bear), Lindsay plays guitar, piano, synth and bass. But still, Barrie is distinctly not a solo project, and Happy To Be Here—out May 3, 2019 via Winspear—is very much a full band record.
Happy To Be Here offers snapshots of the band coming together in the city, after having lived all over: Boston, Baltimore, upstate New York, London, São Paulo via Berlin. “The scaffolding of this album is moving to New York and finding t
Emerald Valley is the sophomore effort from supergroup Filthy Friends, out May 3 on Kill Rock Stars. This album finds Corin Tucker, Peter Buck, Scott McCaughey, Kurt Bloch, and new drummer Linda Pitmon flexing their muscles both sonically and thematically: the music contains more surprises and sophistication, while the lyrics take on the current state of our planet and our people. The album title and title track come from another name for Eugene, OR, Tuckers home city, and evolved, in her words, into a sort of manifesto about the kind of place we are at as a country but also as a region. Just taking stock of where were at and feeling like I cant believe we let things get this bad.
2019 release. Frank Carter & the Rattlesnakes return with their third studio album End of Suffering. Recorded at Chapel Studios with Cam Blackwood (George Ezra/Jack Savoretti) and mixed by Alan Moulder (Nine Inch Nails/Queens of the Stone Age) - End of Suffering (named after the Buddhist term for enlightenment) is the sound of a band entering an entirely new realm of the senses, a forty minute rock 'n' rollercoaster of molten-hot bangers, scorched-soul ballads and grunge lullabies laced through with a lacerating lyrical honesty.
New Vinyl: $22.98 $21.98 Buy
When PROTOMARTYR—vocalist Joe Casey, guitarist Greg Ahee, bassist Scott Davidson, drummer Alex Leonard—stepped into a studio together for the first time, in November of 2011, they didn’t know they were about to record an album. With only four hours of studio time booked and one case of beer between them, their plan was to walk out with enough songs for a seven-inch single. Instead, at the suggestion of engineer Chris Koltay, the newly formed Detroit outfit recorded as much as they possibly could, in what little time they had. They left with 21 songs—enough material for two singles *and* a full-length album that, years later, is still vital listening. Sold out and out of print shortly after its original release on Urinal Cake Records in 2012, NO PASSION ALL TECHNIQUE is a sometimes messy look at one of rock’s most magnetic bands—and lyricists—just as they were coming to life. Primal, cerebral, heartbreaking, funny—it’s an accidental tour de force that’s also become an unlikely collector’s item. “My memory is shot,” Casey says, “but I appreciate now, looking back, how raw and off-the-cuff it was. There’s tons of mistakes in it and that wasn’t because we planned on it. We still can’t really admit that it’s as good as it is. You never want to say that your first is the best, but I’m happy that the first ended up not being terrible. It gave us doorway to what we’d want to do later. ”
Deluxe Edition-- Double LP on yellow & green marbled vinyl in double gatefold jacket, housed in debossed dragon scale pattern slipcase. Bonus 7-inch (same as peak version, black vinyl) & collectible Dragon Leaguemembership card inside packaging. Includes coupon for full download. Indie Only. Limited Edition
The Mountain Goats are John Darnielle, Peter Hughes, Jon Wurster, and Matt Douglas. They have been making music together as a quartet for several years. Three of them live in North Carolina and one has moved back to Rochester. Their songs often seek out dark lairs within which terrible monsters dwell, but their mission is to retrieve the treasure from the dark lair & persuade the terrible monsters inside to seek out the path of redemption. As Axl Rose once memorably asked, in the song “Terrible Monster”: “what’s so terrible about monsters, anyway?” This is the question The Mountain Goats have been doggedly pursuing since 1991. They will never leave off this quest until every option has been exhausted. Thank you.