Indie / Alternative

64 products

Showing 1 - 24 of 64 products
Explosions In The Sky - Those Who Tell The Truth Shall Die, Those Who Tell The Truth Shall Live Forever (LP)
Explosions In The Sky - Those Who Tell The Truth Shall Die, Those Who Tell The Truth Shall Live Forever (LP)Temporary Residence Limited
Somehow, Jeremy deVine (self proclaimed Temporary Residence "overlord") convinced us to leave the mild December climate of Austin, Texas and to drive northeast to Baltimore (where Temporary Residence was based at the time) and record what would be our second record and our first for TRL. This was in 2000 and our means of transportation was a barely functioning, deathtrap of a family van loaded with our equipment, our clothes, several bags of snacks and a massive boombox (there was not a working stereo in the van). The trip took us a few days and we think we played some shows on the way there, but the memories are a bit clouded. We found Jeremy's house and knocked on the door. He answered and invited us inside. The place was in shambles. Boxes of records and CDs scattered about, art supplies crammed into every corner. The physical manifestation of our new record label was a shelf made of cinder blocks and a few planks. Also, it was freezing cold. Jeremy informed us that the house had no heat because nobody had paid the bill. We were concerned. We all slept that night in our parkas and hats and gloves. Then Jeremy woke us all up at seven in the morning (Jeremy doesn't really sleep much and apparently doesn't need to) and piled us all into the van. We would be driving to DC where we would be recording the album. Our first actual day of recording was discouraging. We couldn't play any of the songs right and we were all really nervous. The four of us were convinced that we had made a terrible mistake thinking that we could record an album that a label would actually send to stores for people to buy. At the end of the day, we got back into the van and headed back to Jeremy's house. None of us were feeling very good. We then stayed up all night talking with Jeremy. We told him how badly we thought the first day of recording went and how it might be best if we just packed up and went home. He didn't seem concerned. He said he had faith and that he knew that it would turn out alright. Actually, he didn't talk much about this horrible first day at all. Instead he talked about music and movies and art and food and growing up. He made us all laugh a lot. Eventually we fell asleep. Jeremy woke us at seven again and we drove to DC. And things went well. We recorded for the next few days, waking up early, driving to the studio, recording, eating at the famous Ben's Chili Bowl, recording some more, driving back to Baltimore, talking, sleeping, dreaming. Less than a week later, we had a finished record and it was time to go home. We said our goodbyes to Jeremy. We were happy and sad. Happy that we had just recorded a record that we were all excited about. Sad because we had made a new, great friend and we weren't sure when we would see him again. We left. (We scheduled some shows on the way home. One was in Syracuse. The show was in the basement of a house. The police came during our second song and made us stop. The next day our van wouldn't start. We were stranded. We lived in the attic of some kind strangers. For eight full days we read books and watched blizzards and ate Chinese food and went sort of nuts. We almost missed Christmas. But eventually we made it home).
Spain - World Of Blue (Moody Blue Vinyl LP)Spain - World Of Blue (Moody Blue Vinyl LP)
Spain - World Of Blue (Moody Blue Vinyl LP)Shimmy Disc
The first vinyl release of five previously unreleased tracks recorded prior to 1995's landmark "Blue Moods Of Spain" album by the band Spain. Includes the original studio version of signature tune "World Of Blue" featuring Petra Haden on violin. The LP was re-Mixed & re-Imagined by Kramer at his Noise Miami Studio in 2021 for Shimmy-Disc. The LP “World of Blue” features Ken Boudakian and Merlo Podlewski on guitars, and Evan Hartzell on drums. Evan and I attended the same high school, and Ken was my college roommate. Merlo was the final piece of the puzzle. I first met Merlo in 1994. My sister Rachel Haden, who had been working with him at the Rhino Records store in Westwood, knew I was looking for a new guitarist for my band, and introduced us. Merlo is one of those guitarists whose playing is so smooth and effortless he makes anyone feel like they can play. His playing is magical. He had an instinctual grasp of harmony and theory, which brought a great counterpoint to the technical knowledge and finesse of lead guitarist Ken. From our first practice together I knew he was the right addition to the band. Back in those days my sisters Rachel & Petra Haden were in a band called That Dog. They had a strong following in L.A. and were getting ready to sign to a major label. When I first started Spain they were a big inspiration to me. It was an exciting time for music in L.A. Beck and Weezer were just starting out, and this mad scientist/producer named Tom Grimley was recording all the best bands in his converted auto repair shop studio called Poop Alley Studios. Spain played their first official L.A. gig with Merlo at a club called Pan, which shortly thereafter changed its name to Spaceland. We opened for Beck and That Dog. We played at Spaceland a lot (a performance from which can be found on youtube) and at other small clubs and coffee joints like the Troy Cafe (owned by Beck’s mom), Congo Square Coffee House in Santa Monica, Alligator Lounge, and others. At a certain point that year we were ready to record our first 7” single, and I reserved some time at Poop Alley. Poop Alley didn’t seem like the ideal recording setting. The walls and floors were made of concrete, and there was no soundproofing. The fix-it area was the tracking room. The ceiling was so high there almost wasn’t a ceiling. A steep curving staircase with no guardrail led up to a loft area where the console was located, and next to it, on a custom-built, guardrail-less ledge, a queen-sized bed where Tom slept. Also, it wasn’t a nice neighborhood. Up the street, while walking to my car late one night from the nearby Jabberjaw Coffeehouse, a local drunk begged me not to rob him. That’s how bad it was. I paid for the session with weed I grew in my closet. We set up and it starting raining. Tom put a microphone outside. For lunch we’d walk through the alley over to India Sweets and Spices, on Fairfax just north of Pico. After tracking was finished, Petra came over and overdubbed violin. There was a cushioned area where I remember sitting during mixdown. There were little stacks of Aphex 16-track tape everywhere. We stayed good friends with Tom. We recorded a couple more songs with him the following year. Tom recorded lots of bands at Poop Alley. My sisters’ band That Dog, Beck, the Rentals, Rod Poole, Tom’s band Waldo the Dog Faced Boy, and many others. There were parties in the alley. There would be a keg of beer. Everyone was well-behaved. The most dangerous it got was when Kenny asked Beck if he was a Scientologist. I remember laughter and happiness the most from those parties. Not long afterwards Tom shut down the studio. Luckily for us, the tapes still exist. On those tapes are five songs, all of which are represented here. “I Lied” and “Her Used-To-Been” were released on the 7”, the remaining three have never been released before now. I can’t remember who I sent copies of the 7” to but shortly after it came out I got a call from an A&R executive at Geffen inviting me to their offices to talk. “I love your songs,” I remember him saying to me, “but my boss [David Geffen] won’t let me sign you because he doesn’t know how to market you.” Eventually a label that did want to sign us got in touch with me. Restless Records was a local indie record company that had flirted with major label success with bands like Poison and Stryper. Their office was an old rickety house off Sunset Blvd. in Hollywood and they had decent distribution, so I said to myself, “Why not?” This eventually lead to the recording that produced our debut LP “Blue Moods of Spain”. -Josh Haden
The Hated - Best Piece Of Shit Vol. 4 (2LP)
The Hated - Best Piece Of Shit Vol. 4 (2LP)Numero Group
This one’s been teased for awhile, decades even. The Hated box set was an idea before Numero was an idea. Today we’re pleased to announce the first of five planned Hated collections that we’ll be rolling out over the next several years. Up first is Best Piece Of Shit Vol. 4, which compiles the Annapolis quartet’s earliest explorations into revolution summer emo. Spread across two LPs is the band’s 1985 debut cassette, the No More We Cry EP, and 14 period bonus tracks from these hardcore hooligans. We’ve also made a limited 7”+CD+tape edition with an additional five bonus tracks. Andrew Gephardt and Ken Shipley provide lengthy essays on the band and scene, illustrated by dozens of photographs from the band’s archive. We’ve got 500 copies broken bone white wax on both, but not for long. The Hated on Numero… Never said it’d be like this, right?
Eerie Wanda - Internal Radio (Lavender Vinyl LP)
Eerie Wanda - Internal Radio (Lavender Vinyl LP)Joyful Noise Recordings
On Internal Radio, the new album by Eerie Wanda, visual artist and musician Marina Tadic welcomes you to her inner world. Guided by intuition, Tadic's songs use haunting, ethereal space, growing whole universes from the seeds of ideas. Internal Radio documents Tadic becoming the artist she wants to be, working through some things, and even exorcizing a few demons. The result is the most realized Eerie Wanda album yet, building on the project's guitar pop past for a more experimental, otherworldly, serious grown-up affair that ventures into sensitive, emotional territory.
Unknown Mortal Orchestra - Blue Record (12")
Unknown Mortal Orchestra - Blue Record (12")Jagjaguwar
The ​'Blue Record' is a 5 track acoustic mini album expanding on 'II' and including a cover of Dirty Projectors' 'Swing Lo Magellan' and Beck's 'Puttin' It Down' . Everything was recorded straight to tape in a basement with a one mic set up.
Marlon Williams - Make Way For Love (LP)
Marlon Williams - Make Way For Love (LP)Dead Oceans
インディ系大名門〈Dead Oceans〉からの作品の数々で知られるニュージーランド・クライストチャーチ出身のシンガーソングライターのであり、今年度新作の『My Boy』も傑作だったMarlon Williamsが2018年に同レーベルから発表したアルバム『Make Way For Love』がリプレス。若いころはクラシック歌手の道に進むことも考えたというこの人、オルタナ・カントリーを通過したチェンバー・フォーク・サウンドを非凡で個性的な歌声で彩った傑作。〈4AD〉作品でもおなじみAldous Harding (!!)が一曲参加しています。
Japanese Breakfast - Soft Sounds From Another Planet (LP)
Japanese Breakfast - Soft Sounds From Another Planet (LP)Dead Oceans
Japanese Breakfast's 'Soft Sounds From Another Planet' is less of a concept album about space exploration so much as it is a mood board come to life. Over the course of 12 tracks, Michelle Zauner explores a sonic landscape of her own design, one that's big enough to contain her influences. There are songs on this album that recall the pathos of Roy Orbison’s ballads, while others could soundtrack a cinematic drive down one of Blade Runner's endless skyways. Zauner's voice is capacious; one moment she's serenading the past, the next she's robotically narrating a love story over sleek monochrome, her lyrics more pointed and personal than ever before. While 'Psychopomp' was a genre-spanning introduction to Japanese Breakfast, this visionary sophomore album launches the project to new heights.
Wild Nothing - Nocturne (10th Anniversary Edition) (Blue Marble Vinyl LP)Wild Nothing - Nocturne (10th Anniversary Edition) (Blue Marble Vinyl LP)
Wild Nothing - Nocturne (10th Anniversary Edition) (Blue Marble Vinyl LP)Captured Tracks
Nocturne, the sophomore album by Wild Nothing, is a window into singer/songwriter Jack Tatum's "ideal world" of pop music. Written largely while living in Savannah, GA during 2011, the songs that became Nocturne speak to a new Wild Nothing where the lines between Jack's influences and personality have been further blurred. The album features some open references to past music just as his critically acclaimed debut Gemini did, but it's also an album that feels much less rooted in anything in particular and, well, more adult. Gemini was written before there were Wild Nothing fans or even a live band; Nocturne is different. With an unexpected fan base to turn to, Jack spent more time perfecting his craft. The obsessiveness of Nocturne is inherent in it's gentle harmonies, orchestrated synths, wandering voice, and songs that speak of his post-Gemini experiences as he explores new paradoxes of pop. And yet, Nocturne isn't obvious, it is a strange and distinctive musical beast, the product of an obsessive pop vision that creates its own reality.
Sufjan Stevens - Fourth of July (Opaque Red Vinyl 7")Sufjan Stevens - Fourth of July (Opaque Red Vinyl 7")
Sufjan Stevens - Fourth of July (Opaque Red Vinyl 7")Asthmatic Kitty Records
Both versions were recorded around 2014: “Fourth of July (April Base Version)” was recorded in Eau Claire, WI at Justin Vernon’s April Base studio, and “Fourth of July (DUMBO Version)” was recorded in Sufjan’s old studio in Brooklyn, NY. The original version of “Fourth of July” appeared on Sufjan’s 2015 album, Carrie & Lowell. As is (and was) his custom, Sufjan would often rework different versions of his songs while recording an album, and “Fourth of July” was no exception. (Other versions & remixes of the song were released on “The Greatest Gift” mixtape and on the “Exploding Whale” 7” single.) These two latest versions were recently found on old harddrives. The refrain of the song, “We’re all gonna die,” invokes a meditation on human mortality and fragility, even as it acts as an anchor of stoic hope. Its solemnity invites listeners to feel comfort, connection — even joy — wrought from great pain and loss. The song has recently had a resurgence with listeners — which may speak to a deep national grief and sense of loss. A limited run physical 7" in red will be released in December 2022, which marks the 10-year anniversary of Carrie’s death.
The Zenmenn - Enter The Zenmenn (LP)
The Zenmenn - Enter The Zenmenn (LP)Music From Memory

The latest act to emerge from MFM's new album series is another super-powerful one. Heisei No Oto" is a masterpiece that presents even Japan's unique book-off style digs to the world, and "Virtual Dreams" is a must-have 90's techno and house compilation that looks through the prism of the new age revival. The Zenmenn, a mysterious new band from the newly established Music From Memory label, has released their debut album. Their fresh and organic indie music is a combination of oriental lefty pop, new age/ambient, Sufjan Stevens, and even Shintaro Sakamoto. The band's name may also come from the word "Zen"? Their timeless sound and vibes make for a great listening experience no matter where you are!

Tim Bernardes - Mil Coisas Invisíveis (2LP)
Tim Bernardes - Mil Coisas Invisíveis (2LP)Psychic Hotline
Limited white vinyl specifications. This is the second solo album since the masterpiece "Recomecar" by Tim Bernardes, the vocalist / guitarist of São Paulo's soul / guitar rock band O Terno, who is attracting attention as the bearer of the new generation of Brazilian music. His father is Maurício Pereira, a musician who is also a member of Os Mulheres Negras, which was also recorded in the Brazilian compi "Outro Tempo: Electronic And Contemporary Music From Brazil 1978-1992" of , and his unusual musical sense is the same. Outstanding in the generation. It has been praised by the original Tropicália, Caetano Veloso, Gal Costa and Tom Ze, as well as recent free folk music such as Fleet Foxes and Devendra Banhart from outside Brazil, as well as David Byrne. He also participated in O Terno's 7inch release on in Japan with Shintaro Sakamoto and Devendra Banhart. Love songs, sadness songs, change songs, and inclusive singing voices resonate with emotions and provide healing. Expected work that will be able to enjoy the talent that can be called the flag bearer of this Neutropicaria!
Horse Lords - Comradely Objects (Indie Exclusive) (White Vinyl LP)
Horse Lords - Comradely Objects (Indie Exclusive) (White Vinyl LP)Rvng Intl.
Horse Lords return with Comradely Objects, an alloy of erudite influences and approaches given frenetic gravity in pursuit of a united musical and political vision. The band’s fifth album doesn’t document a new utopia, so much as limn a thrilling portrait of revolution underway. Comradely Objects adheres to the essential instrumental sound documented on the previous four albums and four mixtapes by the quartet of Andrew Bernstein (saxophone, percussion, electronics), Max Eilbacher (bass, electronics), Owen Gardner (guitar, electronics), and Sam Haberman (drums). But the album refocuses that sound, pulling the disparate strands of the band’s restless musical purview tightly around propulsive, rhythmic grids. Comradely Objects ripples, drones, chugs, and soars with a new abandon and steely control.
Karate - The Bed Is In the Ocean (CS)
Karate - The Bed Is In the Ocean (CS)Numero Group
A lingering guitar note. A cushion of a bassline nudging along a hushed cadence unspooling impressionistic poeticism one halting line at a time; the sparse snap of a snare providing punctuation. This is how Boston’s Karate opened their third full-length, 1998’s The Bed Is In The Ocean. Perhaps this was a reaction to the aggressive punk tones that marked their previous album, or maybe they hoped to capture the somnambulant dusk on one of those pristine fall days that make living in a town whose population swells when colleges welcome back students all worthwhile. Then again, Karate never made a point of chasing the same idea twice, and “There Are Ghosts” remains in line with the band’s stylistic intrepidness and unpredictability. Even the group’s lineup appeared constantly in flux. After expanding from a trio to a quartet and employing a dual-guitar attack with 1997’s In Place of Real Insight, founding member Eamonn Vitt hung up his axe to attend medical school. Karate soldiered on as a trio, with mid-stream addition Jeff Goddard’s bass work helping establish a sidewinding path forward through the smoky jazz melodicism and sun-beaten blues brushstrokes that hung in the background of the band’s catalog. In their short time together, Karate helped bolster the national punk ecosystem, a scene in which individual artistic vision was prized but rarely achieved. Their exacting precision and emotive interplay helped recombine the DNA of the dignified grace of slowcore, the hot-and-sweaty atmospherics of the blues, and the high-wire tension of post-hardcore to deliver drawling instrumental curveballs and a furtive riptide climax with a controlled grace on “Outside Is The Drama.” Singer-guitarist Geoff Farina frequently teased out the emotional nuances of each song, his worn-in voice shading in the complexities of his enigmatic lyrics; no matter how difficult it may be to parse his snatched-from-daily-life wisdoms, on The Bed Is In The Ocean Farina sounded like a guy who knew exactly the right thing to tell whoever may be listening. And with Karate’s snaking turns through quasi-punk reveries no one else appeared capable of mustering, it’s comforting to hear it accomplished by a band that knew exactly what they were doing.
Karate 'Time Expired' (Cacophony Splatter 5x Vinyl LP Box Set)Karate 'Time Expired' (Cacophony Splatter 5x Vinyl LP Box Set)
Karate 'Time Expired' (Cacophony Splatter 5x Vinyl LP Box Set)Numero Group
This five LP box includes the Karate's Unsolved, Some Boots, and Pockets albums, a first time vinyl pressing of their Cancel/Sing EP, and recently unearthed rehearsal recordings of two unreleased tracks.
Duster - Capsule Losing Contact (Diamond Clear Vinyl 4LP BOX)Duster - Capsule Losing Contact (Diamond Clear Vinyl 4LP BOX)
Duster - Capsule Losing Contact (Diamond Clear Vinyl 4LP BOX)Numero Group
Numero Group boxset providing chapter and verse on American slowcore pioneers Duster. Although short-lived, the trio dealt in uniquely spaced-out post-rock soundscapes over the course of two albums, one EP and a handful of singles and compilation contributions around the turn of the millennium.
Duster - Contemporary Movement (Diamond Dust Vinyl LP)Duster - Contemporary Movement (Diamond Dust Vinyl LP)
Duster - Contemporary Movement (Diamond Dust Vinyl LP)Numero Group
A muffled cry into the technological darkness, Contemporary Movement slid into the world right as the MP3 was seeping out of college dorms. A 39-minute drift into the void, drenched in Cold War-era reverb and then submerged in four track hiss for good measure. Duster constructed a Brutalist masterpiece on the outskirts of a suburban mall, as if to say, “We were here.” “Music for dark spaces and closed eyelids, deeply psychedelic but without sprawl, ambient music with a serrated edge of punk.”—The Ringer “Warm, fuzzed-out sounds that hit home like a tight, melancholic embrace from your favorite person.”—Viceiframe style="border: 0; width: 350px; height: 472px;" src="" seamless>Contemporary Movement by Duster
Say She She - Prism (Indie Exclusive) (Pink Rose Vinyl LP)
Say She She - Prism (Indie Exclusive) (Pink Rose Vinyl LP)Karma Chief Records
The highly anticipated debut LP from Say She She, the all female discodelic soul band that will transport you with their dreamy harmonies, catchy hooks and up tempo grooves! The band's sound is a hat tip to late 70’s girl groups with the three strong female lead voices of Piya Malik (featured in El Michels Affair, and backing singer for Chicano Batman), Nya Gazelle Brown, and Sabrina Cunningham - whose vocals soar through a set doused heavily with funky bass lines, rhythmic wah guitar, melodic synths and lilting bansuri flute lines, bursting into a seamless blend of dreamy harmonies and catchy hooks. A multicultural, multi-instrumental, collaborative melting pot, pulling sounds and styles from all corners of their record collections. The largely self-produced debut album Prism features contributions from Dap Kings Joey Crispiano and Victor Axelrod, Max Shrager (The Shacks), Bardo Martinez (Chicano Batman), Nikhil Yearwadekar (former Antibalas), Andy Bauer (Twin Shadow) and Matty McDermot (NYPMH). For Fans Of: Aasha Puthli, Grace Jones, Minnie Ripperton, The Supremes, Love Apple and Kendra Morris.
Juana Molina - Segundo (21st Anniversary) (2LP+DL)Juana Molina - Segundo (21st Anniversary) (2LP+DL)
Juana Molina - Segundo (21st Anniversary) (2LP+DL)Crammed Discs

To celebrate the 21st anniversary of Juana Molina’s breakthrough album Segundo (2000), here’s a very special reissue, remastered from the original tapes, and augmented by a rich booklet recounting the eventful start of Juana’s musical career, and containing numerous notes, anecdotes, original drawings and previously unreleased pictures.
Segundo is the album which started Juana Molina’s international trajectory as a musician, and its making was a wild story: after dropping her highly-successful career as a TV comedian, and signing with a major company who got her to record her debut album, Juana set out to find her own direction in music and started working on a new record (aptly titled Segundo). This journey took four years, and included sessions in Argentina and in several houses where she lived on the US West Coast, the involvement of several possible producers and of four successive record labels, who each had their own idea of what Juana should be doing... Juana remained untamed, forged ahead and, during the course of this sometimes complicated process, developed her own method and her own characteristic sound. She writes:
From the moment “Segundo” took shape, I began to walk a path that I have not yet abandoned. That is why it’s so important to me. I feel that this was the seed of everything I have done ever since. I discovered the flair of composing in real time, the charm of discarding the very idea of demos, the grace of documenting these moments of searching and finding. Everything else became dispensable.

In 2000, Juana finally self-released Segundo in Argentina. The album semi-accidentally made its way to Japan where it very spectacularly took off, and was eventually picked up by the Domino label in 2003. The reception of Segundo set Juana Molina on course for starting to perform around the globe, garnering a large, devoted fan base, and going on to record five more extraordinary studio albums (including the widely-acclaimed Halo in 2017) and a live record (ANRMAL, 2020).
All this and much more is narrated in the lovely booklet, which includes notes by several people who were involved in these events (including Bruce Springsteen producer Ron Aniello) and by early adopters such as KCRW DJ Chris Douridas, Domino Recording’s Laurence Bell (who discovered Segundo by chance, in Will Oldham’s car), and David Byrne who, as soon as he heard the album for the first time, invited Juana to open for him on his 2003 US tour. 

Aksak Maboul - Ex-Futur Album (LP)
Aksak Maboul - Ex-Futur Album (LP)Crammed Discs

Written and recorded in 1980-83 by (Aksak Maboul & Crammed Discs founder) Marc Hollander and (Honeymoon Killers/Aksak Maboul vocalist) Véronique Vincent, this trailblazing avant-pop album album predated certain hybrid musical trends which may have emerged later on (think pop meets proto-techno, with African, Middle-Eastern, dub, jazz & cinematic French flavours…)

The album remained unfinished and unreleased for 30 years, and finally came out for the first time in Oct 2014.

Aksak Maboul - Un peu de l'âme des bandits (LP+CD)Aksak Maboul - Un peu de l'âme des bandits (LP+CD)
Aksak Maboul - Un peu de l'âme des bandits (LP+CD)Crammed Discs

Originally released in January 1980, the second album from (Crammed founder) Marc Hollander’s band was more intense and experimental than Aksak Maboul’s debut album, yet often as playful. Containing complex written sections, free improv, and a wild variety of elements, Bandits was recorded with a band comprising revered UK musicians Fred Frith & Chris Cutler, and is described by All Music Guide as “a pinnacle of the RIO movement” (RIO being Rock In Opposition, the late-‘70s radical, pan-European coalition of bands, of which Aksak Maboul was part). The album reached #3 in the NME’s top ten European albums of 1980 (after Yello and The Nits, before Steve Reich and Faust!).

For this reissue, the album was remastered from original analogue tapes, and includes a booklet with abundant liner notes, documents, and recollections by all the participants.

Also included in the LP is a bonus album entitled "Before and After Bandits" (CD+download), containing previously-unreleased live and demo recordings featuring seventeen of the band’s successive members and guests. Over the course of ten tracks and 78 minutes of music, this collection charts the sinuous evolution of the ever-morphing Aksak Maboul sound, from the 1977 debut "Onze danses pour combattre la migraine" through the "Bandits" album, a little-documented avant-No Wave phase in 1980, the atypical, eclectic electropop of "Ex-Futur Album", and until the project’s current live incarnation, which started in 2015 after a hiatus of some 30 years.

According to US writer Mikey IQ Jones (who penned the liner notes):

"Aksak Maboul are a brilliant, covert unit that managed to absorb the operations and thoughtforms of many seemingly oppositional aesthetics, fusing them into a sound that few really managed to extend or even emulate.

Each of Aksak Maboul’s three LPs stands as a sibling to the others, each with very distinct personalities and physical characteristics, yet sharing a very foundational chemical and aesthetic makeup– listening to their entire oeuvre, one recognizes melodies or polyrhythmic patterns from a song on one album subtly integrated into the body of one elsewhere.

The roots of Aksak Maboul’s appeal and longevity lie within the collective’s shapeshifting lineup and their chameleonic aesthetic abilities; the group’s ever-mutating sound is akin to a sonic möbius strip, always digesting and recontextualizing itself, where seams and edges show but continually fold in upon themselves as the madness evolves. The best part? That evolution hasn’t yet ceased."

Indeed… following the acclaimed 2014 release of its long-delayed 3rd opus Ex-Futur Album (assembled from unfinished material dating back to the early '80s, and issued under the name Véronique Vincent & Aksak Maboul), Aksak Maboul has taken to the stage in 2015 with a new line-up, and a fourth album is currently in the works. 

Aksak Maboul - Onze danses pour combattre la migraine (LP)Aksak Maboul - Onze danses pour combattre la migraine (LP)
Aksak Maboul - Onze danses pour combattre la migraine (LP)Crammed Discs
In the spring of 1977, two young Belgian musicians who call themselves Aksak Maboul (aka Marc Hollander & Vincent Kenis) set out to record an album, "Onze danses pour combattre la migraine", in which they playfully fused and deconstructed all kinds of genres to create their own musical world. Three years later, Hollander founded the Crammed label. Many ingredients came in and out of the Aksak blender : fake jazz, electronics, imaginary African & Balkan music, minimalism... there were even pre-techno aspects such in as Saure Gurke and its characteristic keyboard stab pattern which will mysteriously find its way into many classic Detroit techno tracks some ten years later. Onze Danses became a cult album, and seems retrospectively to have mapped out the way for the various directions which have been explored by Crammed during the next two decades.
Aksak Maboul - Figures (2LP)Aksak Maboul - Figures (2LP)
Aksak Maboul - Figures (2LP)Crammed Discs

The legendary experimental pop outfit returns with a brand-new record entitled Figures, written, conceived and produced over the last couple of years by Marc Hollander (founder of Aksak Maboul and of the Crammed label) and Véronique Vincent (former singer with The Honeymoon Killers).

Figures is a double album containing 22 tracks and interludes, resulting from the flow of creative ideas which arose after a gap of over thirty years (see the Aksak story overleaf). Drawing again from the multiple sources which have always inspired the band (from electronic music and pop to experimentation, jazz, minimalism, contemporary classical etc), Aksak Maboul transcends and reconfigures them with its inimitable style, to create an impressive, rich and unclassifiable piece of work.

Seamlessly weaving electronic and acoustic instrumentation, improvisation and programming, songs, beats, found objects and sound collages, the album works as a labyrinth, full of secret passages and interconnections. Figures clocks in at 75 minutes, thus deliberately shunning the laws of instant gratification and the myth of today’s reduced attention span: the Aksak Maboul aficionados will surely be happy to engage in an immersive session of deep listening (in two halves), in order to enjoy the album’s many layers and details.

Véronique Vincent & Marc Hollander wrote the album together, by following parallel courses with their own respective internal logic, while remaining closely connected. Enigmatic and finely chiseled, feeding on her love for painting and literature, Véronique’s texts form a dense fabric which mirrors the sonic kaleidoscope assembled by Marc, who wrote and arranged all the music (aside from a track co-written and sung by Véronique and Julien Gasc). Véronique also made the drawings and paintings which illustrate the cover and inserts.

The two protagonists recorded most of the album in their own studio, with contributions by the young members of Aksak Maboul’s current live line-up: Faustine Hollander (bass, vocals, co-production), guitarist Lucien Fraipont and drummer Erik Heestermans. Also featured are performances by several friends and guests, including revered improvisor Fred Frith, Tuxedomoon’s Steven Brown, members of Aquaserge (Julien Gasc, Audrey Ginestet & Benjamin Glibert), former band members (including Michel Berckmans and Sebastiaan Van den Branden), and several others 

Mount Kimbie - MK 3.5: Die Cuts | City Planning (Clear Vinyl 2LP+DL)Mount Kimbie - MK 3.5: Die Cuts | City Planning (Clear Vinyl 2LP+DL)
Mount Kimbie - MK 3.5: Die Cuts | City Planning (Clear Vinyl 2LP+DL)WARP
MK 3.5: Die Cuts | City Planning shows how Dom Maker and Kai Campos have grown over the past decade, and demonstrates the two sides of Mount Kimbie’s aesthetic coin - each side produced entirely by either member. Dom’s side, Die Cuts, is colourful and melody-led, thriving on the spark of collaboration; Kai’s, City Planning, is tactile and unpredictable, the product of a deeply personal aesthetic voyage. The two sides complement each other through their contrasts. But in other ways they’re not so different. Both artists present a unique vision which stands apart from their peers; neither side could have been made by anyone but Mount Kimbie.
Trio SR9 - Déjà Vu (LP+DL)Trio SR9 - Déjà Vu (LP+DL)
Trio SR9 - Déjà Vu (LP+DL)No Format!

TRIO SR9 is composed of French classical percussionists (Paul Changarnier, Nicolas Cousin and Alexandre Esperet) from the Conservatoire de Lyon. They play orchestral percussions such as marimba but also plenty unique "second-hand" objects collected in a breaker's yard (crystal glasses, metals, etc).

Their Déjà vu project was created after an encounter with French composer and arranger Clément Ducol. Together they decided to embark on a project which would see them taking on pop hits of the kind that are produced in mega studios on the other side of the Atlantic and dazzle with a thousand lights and special effects. They wanted to make pop without machines, guitars, bass or synths. 100% Acoustic.

This interest in global hits by the likes of Rihanna, Billie Eilish, Ariana Grande, Lana Del Rey, Franck Ocean or Pharrell Williams might come as a surprise to some, but it’s basically pretty logical for these three conservatoire-educated mavericks, who are all well aware of the fact that many classical themes were adapted from popular dance tunes that have been long-forgotten.

They have invited talented singers such as Blick Bassy, Camille, Camélia Jordana, Malik Djoudi and Sandra Nkaké to cover those global hits.
All have inspired the music with their own particular energy, tenderness, the grain of their voice and their craziness, and a thousand other nuances that play their part in that troubling sensation that English speakers express using the French term déjà vu. 

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