TVD Los Angeles

TVD’s The Idelic Hour with Jon Sidel

Greetings from Laurel Canyon!

Give me time to realize my crime  / Let me love and steal / I have danced inside your eyes  / How can I be real / Do you really want to hurt me  / Do you really want to make me cry / Precious kisses words that burn me / Lovers never ask you why

It’s late in the canyon. Well, late for me I guess. Shit my days have changed. As many of my friends know, I’ve had a trying 2018. This last week was as stressful as any.

The “really” good news is, as I listen to this week’s Idelic Hour, I realize I have a few key things—family, friends, and rock ‘n’ roll.

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The TVD Storefront

TVD Vinyl Giveaway: California Roots Music and Arts Festival’s California Roots Vol. 1

Destined to be a 2018 highlight, the California Roots Music and Arts Festival, kicks off tomorrow, and per last year’s California Roots Vol. 1, they’ve pressed the bands hitting the stage in 2018 onto a second comp, California Roots Vol. 2, which you can pre-order right here. To get you stoked for this weekend’s festival and the arrival of Vol.2, we have a copy of California Roots Vol. 1 to award one of you. (Think of it as one sweet, sweet flashback.) First however, some official background:

The ninth annual California Roots Music and Arts Festival will take place at the Monterey County Fair and Event Center from May 25–27, 2018. To celebrate, California Roots is bringing back a second volume of their popular vinyl release series begun in 2017. The limited edition vinyl album has a unique splatter design, mixing four colors and housed in a gatefold jacket spread. The album features songs from artists on this year’s line-up, including an exclusive unreleased song from Slightly Stoopid.

The release, aptly titled California Roots Vol. 2, is available for pre-order at http://moremusic.at/CaliRootsVinyl. Attendees will be available to purchase the vinyl at the festival, but pre-orders are strongly recommended due to the very limited pressing run. Fans who pre-order can choose to have the record shipped to their house before the festival, or pick it up at the merch booth on site. The album was produced by festival co-producer Dan Sheehan alongside Eric Smith and Lem Oppenheimer of the indie tastemaker label Easy Star Records.

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The TVD Storefront

TVD Radar: Public Image Limited, The Public Image Is Rotten (Songs From The Heart) vinyl box set in stores 7/20

VIA PRESS RELEASE | To celebrate their 40th Anniversary, John Lydon’s Public Image Ltd (PiL) are pleased to announce The Public Image is Rotten (Songs from the Heart) Box Set will be released on 20th July 2018, coming in the form of a staggering 5CD/2DVD, 6LP and Digital.

The box set will feature the PiL Singles Collection (1978-2015), B-sides, Rarities and Radio Sessions, 12” Mixes, Unreleased Mixes and Tracks and a Live concert from New York Ritz in July 1989. The DVD includes PiL promo videos + footage from the BBC’s Top Of The Pops and Old Grey Whistle Test. Just in case that isn’t enough they’ve included two legendary live concerts, the first PiL’s appearance at the Tallinn Rock Summer Festival in Estonia 1988 (still part of the USSR at the time) and the second from 2013’s Enmore Theatre in Australia during the This is PiL tour.

The box set coincides with the release of a career-spanning documentary film about Public Image Ltd (also titled The Public Image is Rotten), which premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival in New York last year and then had its European premiere at London’s Raindance Festival in 2017. Directed by Tabbert Fiiller, it will be released later this year in select cinemas.

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The TVD Storefront

TVD Premiere: Stumptown Coffee Roasters’ Worker’s
Comp, Volume II

It may be a wretched pun to say coffee shop employees nowadays get a lot of perks, but some outfits are now offering its baristas and staff everything from company stock and free college tuition to one-day racial sensitivity training.

Portland’s Stumptown Coffee employs enough musicians to feature their bands on exclusive compilations. Its Workers Comp Vol. I, recorded live in the original shop on Division Street in Southeast Portland, came out in 2001, just a couple of years after the roaster was founded.

By now, Stumptown has expanded to Ace Hotels, with shops in Seattle, New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, and New Orleans. So it follows that the long-awaited Workers Comp Vol. II features a wider geographic array. Eleven bands hailing from New York and L.A. as well as Portland were flown out late last year to record with producer Mike Coykendall at the Map Room in Southeast Portland.

Out May 25 via Sub Rosa Curation on vinyl—as well as limited edition coffee vinyl— Workers Comp Vol. II is also making its debut today here at TVD. In addition to being a better than average compilation showcase, it may cause the mother company some worry—as talented as these bands are, how long can they be expected to still keep pouring cold brew?

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The TVD Storefront

Graded on a Curve: Brownsville Station,
Yeah!

Some albums make such a small and unprepossessing mark on rock history that it’s easy to forget they’re there. And so it is with 1973’s Yeah! by Brownsville Station, the hard-rocking Detroit power trio whose soul claim to fame is that great anthem to juvenile delinquency “Smokin’ in the Boys Room.”

Brownsville Station was one of the lesser bands to emerge from the vibrant Detroit rock scene of the late sixties–compared to the likes of Iggy and the Stooges, the MC5, Grand Funk Railroad, and even the Bob Seger System, Brownsville Station ranks as an almost forgotten footnote.

But Cub Koda, Mike Lutz, and Henry “H Bomb” Weck had some good music in them, and they scored a minor triumph with the covers-heavy Yeah! The late Cub Koda was both a music writer and a walking musical encyclopedia, and he obviously chose the album’s very diverse assortment of covers–by artists ranging from the Velvet Underground to Jimmy Cliff to Hoyt Axton to fellow Detroiters Terry Knight and the Pack–with loving care.

This is party music by a party rock band that doesn’t aim too high but hits the target right in the bull’s eye; these boys didn’t have grand musical ambitions, they just wanted to show you a good time. And they do; all ten of the songs on Yeah! are guaranteed, in their own small way, to help you get your party started.

And Brownsville Station will surprise you too–their take on Lou Reed’s “Sweet Jane” is bona fide sweet, and the last thing you would expect from these rock’n’roll animals. And they turn Robert Parker’s horn-driven rock’n’soul classic “Barefootin’” into a T-Rex/MC5 hybrid and unfettered guitar rave up. The axe is straight-up Marc Bolan; the vocals are pure Rob Tyner.

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A morning mix of news for the vinyl inclined

In rotation: 5/25/18

Iowa | Vinyl records are making a comeback, and there’s a new store in the East Village where music fans can get their record fix. Marv’s Music opened its doors for the first time on Tuesday, selling everything from jazz to heavy metal. “What I want to bring back is the experience of going to the record store. My generation, we grew up, that’s what we did. On Fridays you went and checked out what the new releases are. I want to encourage people to use this as a communal space just to come and talk about music, as well as to hopefully get back into vinyl if they aren’t already, and to actually enjoy holding the physical copy of the album,” owner Brian Davis said. Davis named the store after his late father who told him, “Never have regrets.”

Connecticut | Vinyl classics valued at Replay Records in Hamden: It was records that brought them together and records that have kept them jointly and happily running one of the more unique businesses in the area for almost 30 years. Doug and Mary Snyder own and operate Replay Records at 2586 Whitney Avenue — a place where vinyl classics in various genres are immensely valued, and where being part of the small network of independent Connecticut record stores is also considered very important. Just recently the store was honored as the best record store in CTNOW’s 2018 Best of New Haven’s Readers’ Poll. “I’ve loved records since I was a kid,” said Doug, who began his career working as a recording engineer in Wallingford. “I’ve always had a big collection.”

Japan | Proof That Shimokitazawa Is Tokyo’s Hippest Neighborhood. Many are calling it the Williamsburg of Tokyo in reference to the trendy Brooklyn enclave. …As in Brooklyn, there’s an abundance of unique shops and restaurants in Shimokitazawa. At New York Joe Exchange, which is housed in an old public bathhouse, you can find ironic hipster-vintage wear as well as on-trend secondhand clothes from Comme des Garçons, Supreme, Alexander Wang, and Levi’s. In the same area—known as the “neon district” for their signage—Flamingo, Haight & Ashbury, and Chicago (Shimokitazawa is the Tokyo chain’s largest branch) are other musts for secondhand shopping. Record shop standouts include Flash Disc Ranch, Jet Set, Best Sound Records, and City Country City, which, in a welcome twist, serves pasta and beer along with selling vinyl.

Game-changing reggae label Trojan Records to release 50th anniversary vinyl box set: With hits and rarities from Desmond Dekker, The Upsetters, The Ethiopians and more. Iconic UK imprint Trojan Records has a new 50th anniversary box set on the way, this June. Established in summer 1967 as a sub-label by Lee Gopthal and Island Records’ founder Chris Blackwell, the Trojan was instrumental in bringing reggae sounds to Europe in the seventies. During its heyday, Trojan released hundreds of records including music by Desmond Dekker, Toots and the Maytals, Bob & Marcia, and The Ethiopians. Trojan Records’ 50th anniversary box set includes hits alongside rarities, as well as two recordings from new label Trojan Reloaded, with 4xLPs, 2×7″ singles, 2xCDs, a 50 page book, a Trojan slipmat, and a Trojan 7″ single adapter.

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TVD Washington, DC

TVD Live: Okkervil River at the Black Cat, 5/20

On the inaugural night of the new Okkervil River tour Sunday at DC’s Black Cat, frontman Will Sheff kept saying what a joy it was there to be there and perform. He brought up that word joy more than once, possibly because he has been accused of being a Gloomy Gus in recent years, sending out sad song after song for a band that itself imploded a couple of albums ago.

But he recruited the road band he hastily assembled for his last tour as his new permanent band, with which he recorded the new In the Rainbow Rain album that came out last month on ATO Records. It also contains a number of contemplative songs, but one by one, each one seems to fight to become anthemic by the time they are over. That, mixed in with favorite songs from five of the band’s earlier eight albums, made the night seem absolutely upbeat.

With long hair, wire framed glasses, and bushy beard, Sheff was the spitting image of “Give Peace a Chance” era John Lennon, and his ambition wasn’t far from that with his personal, expansive, and poetic songs from throughout his career, with lyrics fans in the audience were seen to sublimely sing along to all night.

The most simplified of the new songs seemed to work best live, from the loping and catchy opening advisory, “Don’t Move Back to LA” to probably the only song to ever focus on “Famous Tracheotomies.” That terrific tune begins as a personal history—as Sheff gave his parents a scare with the necessary procedure as a baby, and then recounts a litany of famous names who had the same experience—from Gary Coleman of Diff’rent Strokes to Motown queen Mary Wells to Dylan Thomas to Ray Davies, whose experience at 13 at the St. Thomas Hospital gave him a chance to witness a scene he’d write about a decade. And Sheff’s song ends with the memorable melody of that Kinks classic, “Waterloo Sunset.”

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The TVD Storefront

TVD Radar: Willie Nelson, Things To Remember–The Pamper Demos 2LP red vinyl set in stores 7/13

VIA PRESS RELEASE | For the series of sessions that laid the foundation for Willie Nelson’s career and thus changed the course of modern country music, these recordings have been treated pretty cavalierly over the years.

But first, a little history…Willie Nelson was a struggling songwriter, hungry for work and maybe even just plain hungry, when he moved to Nashville in late 1960 with his wife and kids and met Hank Cochran, who was a writer for Pamper Music. Pamper, which was owned by country star Ray Price, fiddle player Hal Smith, and a baker from Pico Rivera, California named Claude Caviness, was the hottest publishing company in town, thanks to writers like Cochran and Harlan Howard and songs like “Heartaches by the Number” and “I Fall to Pieces.”

At first, Willie wasn’t going to sign with Pamper because Hal Smith wouldn’t give Willie the draw he needed, but Cochran told Smith to front Willie fifty bucks a week from his own draw. So Willie, determined to reward Cochran’s trust, got to work. “I was writing to prove I could write,” he said. “To get the money and feel like I was earning it.” He would end most work days with a new song, and then he and Cochran would call a session with A-team musicians who didn’t have major label studio work that day. The result: a body of work that just may well represent the most fertile creative period ever to issue from a country songwriter.

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The TVD Storefront

TVD Radar: Manfred Mann, The Albums
’64–’67 vinyl reissues
in stores 6/22

VIA PRESS RELEASE | Manfred Mann, one of the most popular, much-loved of British Bands to emerge in the post-Beatles pop explosion of the mid-sixties, have their first four albums – namely The Five Faces of Manfred Mann (1964), Mann Made (1965), Mann Made Hits (1966) and the instrumental set, Soul of Mann (1967) reissued by Umbrella Music on Friday, June 22nd 2018. The four individual albums are reissued on CD and top-quality vinyl.

The four vinyl albums are also released as a limited edition deluxe box set, which includes a full-colour vintage band photo print, and a DVD featuring exclusive interviews filmed in 2017 with original band personnel Manfred Mann, Paul Jones, Tom McGuinness, and Mike Hugg. Apart from a limited vinyl pressing of Five Faces in 2012, this marks the first time in over thirty years that the albums have been released on vinyl. The reissues are in their original mono, taken from first-generation quarter inch master tapes, the sleeve art was taken from original negatives, and the quartet of titles come under the ‘Artist Approved’ banner, released with the full sanction of the band.

Manfred Mann started off as a driving rhythm and blues combo (with a strong Jazz influence!), taking their name from their keyboard playing leader, at the insistence of their EMI producer, John Burgess (before that, they were known as The Blues Brothers!). Fronted by vocalist and harmonica player Paul Jones, they quickly became consistent singles chart hit-makers. After making their breakthrough by way of the intense “5-4-3-2-1,” which was adopted as the theme tune for the classic TV Pop show, Ready, Steady Go, the band moved imperceptibly in to the music mainstream, with smash hits such as “Do Wah Diddy Diddy,” “Pretty Flamingo,” “Oh No, Not My Baby,” and “Come Tomorrow.” They were also one of the first bands to recognise the commercial potential of Bob Dylan, taking his “If You Gotta Go, Go Now” into the singles charts worldwide.

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The TVD Record Store Club

Graded on a Curve:
New in Stores, May
2018, Part Three

Part three of the TVD Record Store Club’s look at the new and reissued releases presently in stores for May, 2018. Part one is here and part two is here.

NEW RELEASE PICKS: GAS, Rausch (Kompakt) The latest from Wolfgang Voigt’s reignited ambient-electronic project is a 60-min piece designed to be listened to in one sitting. Out on CD and standalone digital, the 2LP comes with a download allowing for the realization of Voigt’s aim, this pairing exquisitely combining the beauty and heft of the tactile (a reliable component in Kompakt’s output, and distinctively in the oeuvre of GAS) with the possibilities opened up by technological advancement. But y’know, this wouldn’t really be worth noting if the music was merely okay. The good news is that Rausch is impeccably constructed, with nary an inch of excess or traces of ran-through motions. Offering many unexpected (and dark) turns along the way to a splendid finale, it’s amongst Voigt’s finest work. A

The Mystery of the Bulgarian Voices featuring Lisa Gerrard, BooCheeMish (Prophecy Productions) Initially assembled by Swiss ethnomusicologist Marcel Cellier, The Mystery of the Bulgarian Voices released an LP back in 1975 (as Le Mystère des Voix Bulgares) that roughly a decade later was reissued on 4AD (Nonesuch did the honors in the US), so this collab with vocalist and Dead Can Dance co-founder Gerrard has roots in precedent. Furthermore, the MotBV has always been dedicated to combining the traditional and the modern, so even after a break in recording of over 20 years, the music here unfurls comfortably but intensely (likewise, Gerrard’s contribution) and without straining for the up-to-date. And while the instrumentation holds a consistent allure, it’s the singing that’s really where it’s at. A

REISSUE/ARCHIVAL PICKS: Bark Psychosis, ///Codename: Dustsucker (Fire) After some notable singles and EPs, ’94’s debut LP Hex put this UK act (led by sole constant member Graham Sutton) at the forefront of the New. An essential post-rock acquisition, it was reissued by Fire late last year, and now here’s the ’04 follow-up (and Bark Psychosis’ final statement). Musically, a decade is a long time. Although a whole lot had transpired in the post-rock realm since Hex helped to define it, these selections display no hints of being eclipsed. Overall, if not quite rising to the level of its predecessor, Codename reliably hangs in the ballpark of excellent, and everything still sounds fresh in 2018. How ‘bout that? If you dig Hex, you’ll want this one, too. Featuring guest drums by Lee Harris of Talk Talk. A

Franco Battiato, Clic (Superior Viaduct) Italian experimental pop/ avant-garde composer Battiato’s three prior LPs have recently been reissued by Superior Viaduct, and this one, originally issued by Bla Bla in ’74, is the latest in a program that’s scheduled to culminate with ’78’s L’Egitto prima delle sabbie. Sometimes tagged as the Italian Brian Eno, Battiato’s work occasionally offers similarities to Krautrock/ kosmische (“Propriedad Prohibida,” here), but much of this alb’s sonic motion is resistant to easy comparisons. The saxophone in opener “I Cancelli Della Memoria” delivers a nice surprise, and twists are common. However, there are recurring gestures toward classical experimentation (Clic is dedicated to Karlheinz Stockhausen), and the sampling of Henry Cowell’s ’50s Folkways recordings is tremendous. A

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