The remains of the vessel weren’t removed for several days. I walked down with my father to peer inside the boat cabin. Maps, coffee cups and clothing were strewn around inside. “I remember looking only briefly, wilted by the feeling that I was violating some remnant of this man’s presence by witnessing the evidence of its failure. Later I read a story about him in the paper. It was impossible to know what had happened. The boat had never crashed or capsized. He had simply slipped off somehow, and the boat, like a riderless horse, eventually came back home.” The narrative somehow enhances the songs – an achingly beautiful combination of forlorn, reverb-drenched lullabies draped in a veil of isolation reminding us of a more damaged Mark Kozelek, and indeed the classic 4AD sound with which Grouper has been compared so many times in the past.
By the time you reach the closing track ‘Living Room’, however, you come to the realisation that despite her best efforts to obscure her songs, Harris might just be one of the most gifted songwriters of her generation. An incredible album – possibly her finest yet.
Super-Sonic Jazz present a reissue of Beverly Glenn-Copeland’s self-titled debut album, originally released on the Canadian GRT imprint in 1970. The debut release by Afro-Canadian singer, songwriter, and cult figure within new age experimental sounds, has been long been sought after. The soulful jazz release, was original recorded in 1970 alongside musicians Dough Bush, Don Thompson, Terry Clark, Lenny Breau, Jeremy Steig, and Ray Charles collaborator Doug Riley, aka Dr. Music. Written when she was 26, the album is a testament to Copeland’s stand-out songwriting and earnest, beautiful vocal talents, fitting into the realms of spiritual folk. Born into a musical family in Ottawa, Canada, Beverly Glenn-Copeland studied the classical piano repertoire, after being brought up listening to his father’s playing at home. Following his studies, Copeland moved on to songwriting, in order to weave all the different musical cultures he had come to love. He is best known for the 1986 release Keyboard Fantasies, reissued in 2017 by Invisible City, a record described as a mixture of “digital new age and early experimental Detroit techno”. Now going by his name Glenn Copeland after gender transitioning, the singer songwriter also made a name for himself writing children’s music for TV shows Sesame Street and Mr. Dressup. Referring back to his debut record, Copeland states: “I was a fresh-faced kid of twenty-six when I wrote these songs, only a few years out of the classical music world in which I had been immersed since childhood, performing the European classical song repertoire in concerts both live and for radio broadcast. So I sold my oboe, bought a guitar, and began tuning it in wild and wonderful ways to more easily find the chords I had no idea how to find in the regular tuning. I didn’t want to study anymore. I just wanted to write.” Comes in a heavyweight tip-on sleeve.
2018 limited repress. Quadruple LP set. 180 gram vinyl presented in two gatefold sleeves, inside a heavy card slipcase with a 12″ square, 20-page, saddle-stitched booklet on art paper.
Ravishingly beautiful, achingly precious songs and instrumentals, ranging from two performances by the Royal Court Orchestra in 1906 — with futuristic, overlapping trumpets and exquisite clarinet improvisation — through to a hauntingly soulful Hāfez setting by Moluk Zarrābi of Kāshān, from 1933. There are eight selections from more than 300 recordings made in 1909 above the Gramophone Company offices in City Road, London EC1, by the Persian Concert Party. Unrest at home had compelled the group to travel in order to record, paying its way with shows in Baku, Constantinople, Vienna, and Paris. Its music is a striking, experimental combination of European and Iranian elements, impressionistic and exotic, with chimes, castanets and rattles. There is an arrangement of traditional Persian music for pipe-organ; and rueful, imploring, besotted love-songs. “I am crazy with envy of the dress asleep in your arms and the oils rubbed into your skin.” A setting of Rāheb’s poetry by Moluk Zarrābi is drawn from 136 titles recorded at 1925 sessions in Tehran, when Iranian women were for the first time concertedly accepted as serious professional musicians, without the connotation of prostitution. Such was the social stigma borne by musicians, especially female, several of our singers hid their identities behind partial or assumed names. “Parvāneh,” for example, “Butterfly” — represented by her interpretations of Sa’di and Hāfez, with self-accompaniment on setar, a three-stringed lute (“seh,” three; “tar,” string), Iranian ancestor of the Indian sitar: “I am the slave of love…” And Helen, with some boozy Hāfez wisdom: “Keep your cards close to your chest. Kiss nothing except the lips of your beloved and the rim of a cup of wine. Let no one judge you.” Moluk Zarrābi — together with Qamar-ol-Moluk Vaziri — featured on more than half the 1925 recordings. On her return to the studio the following year, she was accompanied on tar by Mortezā Ney-Dāvud, amongst the country’s most acclaimed musicians and composers of all time, from the Jewish community of Tehran. It sounds like another stupendously gifted Iranian Jewish musician — Yahyā Zarpamjeh — accompanying Akhtar. Alongside one of these duets, two of Ney-Dāvud’s solo recordings from the same sessions are instrumental highlights of this epic set, besides a series of staggering improvisations by Abd-ol-Hoseyn Shahnāzi, sublime ney and kamancheh playing by Mehdi Navā’i and the Armenian Hayk, and an anonymous tar solo from the South Caucasus, captured in Tiflis in 1912, red-raw and rocking. The music was restored from 78s at Abbey Road Studios in London.
2017 Awesome Tapes From Africa
A1 My Old Man 3:42
A2 This Old Dog 2:31
A3 Baby You’re Out 2:38
A4 For The First Time 3:02
A5 One Another 2:46
A6 Still Beating 3:02
A7 Sister 1:18
B1 Dreams From Yesterday 3:27
B2 A Wolf Who Wears Sheeps Clothes 2:49
B3 One More Love Song 4:01
B4 On The Level 3:48
B5 Moonlight On The River 7:03
B6 Watching Him Fade Away 2:23
Conceived and recorded between the Autumnal Equinox of 2006 and Easter of 2009 in Waterbury Center, Vermont; Westminster, Colorado; Penafiel, Portual; and vienna and Preßbaum, Austrial. Source recording (“Dragon Sun Summer”) by Bobby Beausoleil recorded at Tracy Prison, California, 1976; adapted by kind permission of the artist. Mastered by the House Of Absinthe, Westminster, Colorado.
The LPs come in 3-panel gatefold sleeve with 12-paged 12″ booklet.
Limited edition of 700 copies on black vinyl
Originally compiled from a variety of sources as a limited edition CD to sell on tour in 2004 (released by VHF, later released on vinyl by Eclipse), Raag Manifestos presents much of Jack’s rawest and most experimental music, cutting across various acoustic styles, but with a much more jagged and aggressive attack than later music. “Black Pearls from the River” and “Hart Crane’s Old Boyfriends” are dense, serious assaults on the 12 string, with the intensity of the latter enhanced by Ian Nagoski’s roaring electronic backdrop. With subtle tabla accompaniment by Eric Carbonara, “Crossing The Great Waters” is another epic modal journey in the style of Pelt’s “Road To Catawba” and Jack’s own “Red Horse.” The traditional “Blessed Be the Name of the Lord” finishes off the LP on a calming note.
Mapache is proud to present the original Joe & Bing’s first album Daybreak.There aren’t many records as magical, as transcendent and as deserving of rediscovery as this one. This is the adventure of two young american songwriters who had the chance to get in the studio with Brazilian composer, arranger and superstar Deodato. The album they recorded is full of magical moments like “Daybreak”, “Summer Sound” or “Sail”. The record was never officially released in the US but different records with different covers and different mixings appeared on different countries like Brazil or Italy.You hold in your hands the album just like should have been. Cover and sound. And we’re sure you’ll love it.
A1 Walking Out On Yesterday 2:31
A2 I’m Not Forgetting Your Name 3:25
A3 It’s Okay 2:59
A4 Summer Sound 2:54
A5 Fennario 3:43
B1 Love The One You’re With 3:09
B2 If Love’s In Season 2:53
B3 Just Plain Livin’ Blues 2:21
B4 Sail 3:14
B5 Drifting With The Time
A hippie-fied, soul-rock, folk-rock, psych-rock gem lost in the vaults for four decades, A Fire Somewhere by Ray Stinnett (best known as a member of ‘60s outfit Sam The Sham & The Pharaohs) sounds as fresh as the day it was cut, and comes with extensive liner-notes detailing the fascinating life of a little-documented ‘60s rock voyager.
Born in Memphis in 1944, Ray Stinnett got his first guitar, aged 12, from Nathan Novak’s pawn shop, where Elvis got his first guitar. Heading back down Beale Street afterwards, the family stopped at a light and a huge pink Cadillac pulled up beside them. “And oh my god – it was Elvis!” recalls Ray, “So I held up my guitar and shouted, ‘Hey Elvis!’ and he looks over and says, “Hey cat.” Ray told his father he was going to work hard and make a gold record… just like Elvis.
Before long, he was putting the plan into action, first in teen group Johnny and the Electros, then as a duo with drummer Jerry Patterson, playing nightly at honkytonks, roadhouses, beer joints, nightclubs and the many Memphis recording studios. He achieved his promise with Sam The Sham & The Pharaohs – Wooly Bully was the number one selling record of 1965. At 21, Stinnett was living a life of world tours and screaming fans – the whole mania. The wheels fell off a year later, amid managerial disputes. The four Pharaohs (including Ray) parted ways with Sam, wrote two stinging rebukes (“The Hanging” and “You Sure Have Changed”) and released them as The Violations. Ray became more and more of a prolific writer.
By 1967, the summer of love, Ray left for Haight Ashbury in San Francisco with his wife and young son, taking up residence at the legendary Morning Star Ranch, where Ray focused on finding his true voice. Returning to Memphis a year later, Ray formed a working friendship with Booker T Jones, who produced Ray’s unreleased Sun Tree at Pepper West album. Eventually, when Jones moved to Malibu and took a contract with A&M, he lined up a deal for his old friend.
Still working in Memphis with (old) friends Jerry Paterson and Mike Plunk on bass, along with Booker T. and co-mixer/engineer Richard Rosebrough (Chris Bell, Big Star), Ray channelled his experiences in the pop machine, at Morningstar and beyond into the songs that would become A Fire Somewhere. It funnelled the vast experiences of this pop star, cosmic traveller and grounded, loving father.
The songs contained the fried country twang and boogie-woogie grooves of his hometown and of his youth, but were also threaded through with the new psychedelia – shreds of distorted guitar, looping experimental jams and acoustic renditions. “Art is a reflection of life,” says Ray of the making of A Fire Somewhere, “and my life was full of reflection at this time.” And it’s perhaps exactly that fact which kept this incredible record unreleased for all these years.
By summer, the album was ready for release. By winter, it remained on the shelf. A&M reassured Ray that they were going to make him a superstar. Ray had already done that; he just wanted the songs released. Soon, they hit an impasse. Ray took his tapes and songs and went on with his life. In the end, A&M’s loss – is our gain. Listen, and enjoy, this message from another time, and from an old head on young shoulders. “It’s a torch that’s been carried forty years through the desert, waiting for this moment to arrive,” says Ray.
A1 Salty Haze
A2 You Make Me – Feel
A3 Silky Path
A4 Wheel Of Time
B2 Long Rivers Flow
B4 You & I
C1 Honey Suckle Song
C2 Liberty Train
C3 Naturally High
D1 Loves In The Answer
D2 A Fire Somewhere
D3 The Rain
2012 Light In The Attic
On Trees’ 2nd album, they add a sharp psychedelic edge to their compositions & arrangements.
2011 Music on Vinyl Reissue
A reissue of Robbie Basho‘s The Grail & The Lotus, originally released in 1966. It’s become an oft-quoted statement that John Coltrane was the Father, Pharaoh Sanders was the Son, and Albert Ayler, the Holy Ghost. It could arguably apply to the holy trinity of steel string guitarists as well. Many claim John Fahey to be the Father, Kottke was considered the Son, and Robbie Basho would certainly be considered the Holy Ghost. The Basho/Ayler similarities are many, and both pushed their idioms further physically and emotionally than all of their respective contemporaries. The Grail & The Lotus was Basho’s second release for the Takoma label, preceding the wildly prolific year of 1967 that produced three absolute classics with the Falconers Arm sets and Basho Sings (C 1012LP). Supposedly the thematics of The Grail & The Lotus came to Basho while recovering from a feverish bout of pneumonia, and in that state Basho envisioned and expressed a simultaneous glimpse of the Feudal Age, European and Japanese evocations side-by-side, both co-mingling with Knighthoods in Flower. A truly outsider take on the American primitive genre, The Grail & The Lotus is finally reissued for the first time on vinyl, 50 years after its initial release. Beautifully remastered; Edition of 500.
A1 The Grail & The Lotus
A2 The Dharma Prince
A3 Oriental Love Song
B1 The Golden Shamrock
B2 Street Dakini
B3 Chung Mei – The Chinese Orchid
Jazz-trained Margo Guryan released Take a Picture in 1968 after about a decade of songwriting – with credits including Ornette Coleman, Don Cherry and Harry Belafonte, among others. The Pet Sounds acolyte’s lone full-length is an early prototype for countless lounge and dream-pop excursions, and bridges the gap between Burt Bacharach and Belle & Sebastian. The hazy production is loaded with horns, strings and sumptuous harmonies; standout “Sunday Morning” became a Bobbie Gentry and Glen Campbell duet. The album received critical praise, but Guryan had no aspirations to tour. “I didn’t want to be a performer,” she said in a 2011 interview. “I wanted to be a songwriter… You needed a manager, an agent, a lawyer, an accountant … people telling you what to wear, what to say, who to be. The whole thing just didn’t appeal to me.”
United States of America, led by respected modern classical avant garde musician Joseph Byrd, cut a wide swath through the 1968 world of rock, just then comfortably settling in to its backwoods dreams of country-rock to find the debut U.S.A. album howling like an infant terrible on its front doorstep. At the center of the U.S.A.?s fiercely experimental universe were the icy-cool vocals of the beautiful Dorothy Moskowitz, keeping this tumultuous sound from spinning out-of-control in every direction. Almost predictably, the U.S.A. disbanded before it could record a second album, but its brilliant, self-titled effort was certainly one for the ages.
Buzzy Lee is the beautiful singer/songwrtier project of Sasha Spielberg. Her lilting Kate Bush-From-The-Canyon voice has us in a puddle. Her debut EP is produced by Nicolas Jaar, and this tape is exclusively available at Mount Analog.