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Jeffrey Lee Puckett The Cure: Documentary Disintegration

This Is 40…

The Cure celebrated its 40th anniversary in 2018 with two concerts that perfectly encapsulated four glorious decades of abject moping, thunderous gloom and head-spinning pop.

Both shows were filmed and they comprise the contents of 40 Live – Curætion-25 + Anniversary, a box set arriving Oct. 18 that will, sadly, only be available in various combinations of DVDs, CDs, and downloads. Vinyl editions are often late to the party, so fetishists can only be patient and hope.

Anniversary: 1978-2018 was filmed at a massive concert in London’s Hyde Park before 65,000 Cure fans who somehow survived their late teens and early 20s — thanks in no small part to Cure leader Robert Smith, who has served as their virtual camp counselor.

The Cure Hyde Park

The second film, Curætion-25: From There to Here/From Here to There. is a clever conceit that finds the band performing songs from each of its 13 studio albums, plus two unreleased songs, at the Meltdown Festival. The first set starts with 1978’s Three Imaginary Boys and moves forward while the second begins at 2008’s 4:13 Dream and moves backward, creating an arc that shows just how durable the band’s aesthetic has proven.

Each film offers multiple highlights and abundant evidence that this version of the band, anchored by longtime bassist Simon Gallup, is capable of great subtlety and enormous power.

From There to Here/From Here to There

From There to Here begins with Three Imaginary Boys, a song that reads like any number of sorrowful tracks penned by bummed-out singer-songwriters. But when you add the band’s artful swirls of dark, hard pop and Smith’s singular vocals, which are simultaneously broken and commanding, you have a blueprint for goth rock.

Smith has described himself as an accidental member of the goth rock scene — in 1978, he was no more than a depressive with an ear for crushing music — but it’s easy to see why the goth scene grew around him.

Tall, angular, black mascara slathered around both eyes, red lipstick applied with disregard for the actual location of his lips, a bush of jet-black hair atop an outfit of jet-black clothes — Smith was the personification of how goth wanted to sound. But The Cure’s music was more complex, and its blend of teenage gloomscapes and exhilarating pop turned the band into a hit machine.

You won’t hear a ton of those hits on From There to Here/From Here to There, which Smith purposely skewed toward the morose. Instead, the band delivers taut, expert versions of deep album cuts and fan favorites such as From the Edge of the Deep Green Sea, If Only Tonight We Could Sleep, Sinking, 39 and Like Cockatoos.

Director Nick Wickham and editor Reg Wrench set a brisk, but not kinetic, pace. Most of the camera’s attention is focused on Smith, who is still pulling off the mascara, lipstick and black clothes like a boss. His odd charisma is intact and his supple tenor voice remains the sad, lonesome sound of a phone call never returned. It’s a strong performance.

The ageless Gallup dominates the stage in both films, prowling around with a bouncy punk-rock lope while rolling out deep, memorable bass lines. He’s joined by Cure veterans Jason Cooper and Roger O’Donnell along with semi-recent addition Reeves Gabrels.

Hyde Park

They pull out all the stops at Hyde Park which is more like a typical Cure set. Director Tim Pope and editor Tim Woolcott chose a more panoramic approach to capture the enormity of the stage and crowd but the sharp pacing is similar to that used in the other film. The two-channel sound, mixed with Smith’s input, is very good but I had access only to streams of the films so I can’t comment on the 5.1 mix.

The Cure Hyde Park

In addition to some choice album cuts, some of which also appear in the first film, the band delivers massive hits such as Lovesong, Just Like Heaven, Lullaby, Friday I’m In Love, The Caterpillar, In Between Days and Why Can’t I Be Like You.

The show was held shortly after the Meltdown Festival and the band remains on fire. The set starts in the late afternoon with a string of songs that pass for light entertainment in Smith’s world, including gorgeous versions of Pictures of You and Lovesong. But as the sun goes down the set grows more aggressive, perhaps peaking with an incendiary Shake Dog Shake and the black grandeur of Disintegration.

Between the two films, Cure fans are treated to 50 songs that capture the desolation and ecstasy of a band that has made its own way in the world to a degree that many others haven’t. The Cure isn’t a goth band. It’s just The Cure.

This article produced in partnership with Eagle Rock Entertainment.

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Kirsten Stoller Discogs Database Guidelines: Now Available In French!

For the first time ever, the Discogs Database Guidelines are available in a language other than English:  the full Discogs Database Guidelines are now available in French!

The Discogs Database Submission Guidelines are the backbone of Discogs; the product of almost 20 years of community-driven discussion about the best way to catalog all of the music in the world.  The Database Guidelines include over 30,000 words detailing precisely how music data should be documented on Discogs. 

Discogs hopes these translations will better support our international community, and further aide Discogs’ vision of building the biggest and most comprehensive music database in the world.

With over 11.5 million releases cataloged and more than 6 million artists documented on the Discogs database, Discogs moves one step closer to a truly complete international discography.

No one knows Discogs like our dedicated Database contributors. Translations for the Discogs Database Guidelines are 100% crowdsourced from the Discogs Community.  

Being part of the Discogs community translation team is an honor. I’m glad I can bring my contribution to that website, since it helped me develop my passion for vinyl records these last 10 years. Thanks to Discogs, I’ve been able to add a lot of records to my collection… sometimes even records that I couldn’t find anywhere else on the internet. So I think the very least I could do was to return Discogs this favor: Helping translate this website, so more and more music collectors who don’t know any other language than French can now join the Discogs community, and develop their own passion for collecting, just like I did!

LetsBoogie


We are currently working to complete Spanish and German translations, along with continuing to improve French translations. 
In the future, we plan to cover more languages based on the progress in these three languages and community interest. We hope our international contributors will join us in this next phase of the Database Guidelines evolution, and considering assisting with translations! Be part of Discogs history and learn more at localization.discogs.com.

Want to learn more about Discogs?
Want to help translate Discogs?
Get started here.
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SoLil The Discogs Guide To Amsterdam Record Shops





With a Discogs office based in Amsterdam, how could we not have a Discogs Guide to Amsterdam Record Shops? Whether you’re into Techno, World Music, Funk, Soul, Rock, Classical Music or Dutch ‘Smartlappen’, and whether you like your record shops spacious and stylish, more cosy or rough around the edges: with around 30 record shops scattered around the city centre, the Dutch capital has something to offer for everyone.

It took me quite a few days of walking and cycling to visit all record shops in Amsterdam, spread out over the first half of this year (hence the different weather in all the photos, nothing like Dutch winter/spring/summer). So if you only have a day or two to spare, and want to spend some time browsing, I’d recommend making a selection. This Discogs Guide to Amsterdam Record Shops is here to help!

Don’t forget that the Discogs ADE Hangover Record Fair 2019 is happening on October 20th! Free entry with excellent vendors from across Europe, daytime DJs, live bands and more. We hope to see you there!

amsterdam2019

Amsterdam Record stores on Vinylhub.com


Amstel Antiques


Amstel Antiques Amstel 110, 1017 AD Amsterdam

Amstel Antiques started out as an antique shop with a few boxes of records. Those few boxes became more and more, at one point taking up half the space. Three years ago, the decision was made to fully focus on music. The antiques moved out, but the name remains. You won’t only find bin after bin filled with records in all genres (don’t forget the bins under the tables!) but there is also a wall full of CDs. Amstel Antiques record shop doesn’t sell online.


Back Beat Records 


Back Beat Records Egelantierstraat 19, 1015 PV Amsterdam

It must have been such an exciting day 30 years ago, when Sweet Soul Music singer Arthur Conley was in De Jordaan to officially open Back Beat Records! The cosy shop has been specialising in Soul, Funk, Jazz, Blues and World Music from the start. The split-level spaces have been dedicated to these sections while you can also find a small selection of Pop/Rock. The ratio of CD to vinyl records seems to be around 50/50 so it’s also a great place to dig if you’re into CDs.


Black Gold


Black Gold Korte Koningsstraat 13-hs, 1011 EX Amsterdam

A 10-minute walk from Amsterdam’s Central Station, Black Gold is a record store combined with a specialty coffee and tea shop. It is a good place to start a day of digging: While most of Amsterdam’s record shops open around 11AM, noon or even later, Black Gold opens its doors early in the morning, at 9AM on most weekdays. Enjoy a coffee while listening to some chilled out music and after that check out their selection of new and second-hand Soul, Funk, Hip Hop, Jazz and Dance records (LPs, 12″s and a few 7″s). While Black Gold does sell on Discogs, they want to offer an incentive to customers who visit their shop, so some of their best finds are available in their shop only.

Find Black Gold on Discogs


Bordello A Parigi

Bordello A Parigi

Bordello A Parigi Oudezijds Kolk 71, 1012 AL Amsterdam

While looking for a bigger space for their label, online shop and distribution, Bordello A Parigi decided to open a physical record shop in Amsterdam last year. At the Oudezijds Kolk, a side street off the Zeedijk, which is only a few minutes from Central Station, they found the perfect spot. Dig through new and used Disco, House, Wave, Minimal, Italo music and more, and pick up some releases from their own label.

Find Bordello A Parigi on Discogs


Charles Muziek

Charles Muziek Weteringschans 193, 1017 XE Amsterdam

Charles Muziek has been around since 1954 and is the last shop in Amsterdam that is completely specialised in Classical music. Besides Classical music ranging from the Middle Ages to contemporary, their selection also includes Ethnic music. Most music is on CD, there are DVDs, a small section with cassettes and a few vinyl records. The lady who runs the shop has an fantastic knowledge about composers and if you let her know what you’re looking for, she can recommend music you might like as well, based on that.

Find Charles Muziek on Discogs


City Records

City Records

City Records Geldersekade 100A, 1012 BM Amsterdam

Close to the Nieuwmarkt with its cafés and bars, is the Geldersekade, where you will find record shops on both sides of the canal. The first one is City Records, a spaciously laid out record store where you’ll find mostly Soul, Funk, Latin, Dance, World and Classical music, Pop and Rock. And Jazz of course. The extensive Jazz section, owner Jasper’s favorite genre, is given a prominent spot in this spacious shop. City Records sells second-hand releases only, mostly LPs, but there is a section with 7″s too. City Records is planning to start selling on Discogs in the near future.


Concerto


Concerto Utrechtsestraat 52-60, 1017 VP Amsterdam

Concerto has been in the same location in the Utrechtsestraat since it opened in 1955 and now takes up 5 storefronts in the street. All that space is used to store their massive collection of new and used vinyl records, CDs and DVDs in every genre you can think of. With dedicated sections (and staff) for example Pop, Soul & World, Jazz & Classical, books and a coffee shop, you can easily spend a few hours (or a full day!) here.

Find Concerto on Discogs


Discostars Record Store 


Discostars Record Store Haarlemmerdijk 86, 1013 JG Amsterdam

Another shop with a long history: Discostars is related to the chain of Disco Star shops that could be found around Amsterdam in the 1960s and onwards. The shop on the Haarlemmerstraat is the one that has stuck around. Although they have moved locations a few times, they have been in their current spot for 17 years now. The large space is home to thousands of CDs, DVDs, quite a few LPs, and cassettes, new and used. There are many racks and stacks with CDs and a separate storage on a different location. The staff knows exactly what they have and where to find it, so don’t hesitate to ask them.

Find Discostars Record Store on Discogs


Distortion Records


Distortion Records Westerstraat 244, 1015 MT Amsterdam

From the outside, it might not look like there is a record shop situated on Westerstraat 244, but once inside it’s very clear that this is a one of a kind place. Distortion records sell a lot of records online, hence the stack of empty record mailers and storage boxes with records at the entrance of the shop. There is not a lot of room to manoeuvre in the narrow pathways between the record bins, but there is a lot to be found. Where to start browsing? Techno, Punk, Soul… just ask owner Amond, he knows exactly where to find what you’re looking for!

Find Distortion Records on Discogs


Eardrum Buzz

Eardrum Buzz Haarlemmerplein 9, 1013 HP Amsterdam

A 10 to 15-minute walk from Central Station, Eardrum Buzz is located at the Haarlemmerplein. It was named after Wire’s single and started out 5 years ago. The shop shares its space with a hairdressing salon with the applicable name “Cut The Crap”. Pop, Soul, Disco, Rock, Punk, Wave: The selection in the shop depends on what they get in stock, but you can always count on finding Hip Hop and Reggae in their bins.

Find Eardrum Buzz on Discogs


Fame

Fame Amsterdam
Fame Amsterdam

Fame Oosterdokskade 67, 1011 DL Amsterdam

Fame has a long history in Amsterdam. The shop was first based in De Kalverstraat, where artists like Crowded House, Slipknot, Keith Caputo, Kiss and Epica came to do in stores and autograph their albums. A few years back it moved into Magna Plaza shopping centre, and more recently Fame moved to its most recent spot. The shop is now located in the spacious basement of MediaMarkt on Oosterdokskade, only a few minutes from Central Station. You can find a big selection of new vinyl records, CDs, boxsets, DVDs and games here.


Flesch Records


Flesch Records Noorderkerkstraat 16, 1015NB Amsterdam

Dutch documentary was made about this Amsterdam record shop, which doesn’t just sell records but is also the place where locals get their apples and pears. Flesch Records offers a selection of Classical music and Jazz as well as Pop and Rock from the 70s and 80s, World Music, singles, Film music and a lot more. Don’t be fooled by the size of the shop; they have a storage location outside the city center with 65,000 records. So if you can’t find what you’re looking for be sure to ask. About a third of the shop space is taken up by vintage audio gear that has been lovingly restored, and if you’re lucky enough to own one of those beauties, you can take it here if it needs repairs.


Game Over?

Game_Over_ext
Game_Over

Game Over?

Right across from Central Station, the biggest part of Game Over? is filled with (retro) games and consoles. One wall of the small shop, however, is dedicated to music. The owner spends a lot of time in Japan which has resulted in an extensive selection of J-Pop, K-Pop, J-Rock and K-Rock on CD, and there is also a good selection of Pop, Rock, Soul and Funk on vinyl. Game Over? doesn’t have an online shop, so you’ll need to do some real life digging!


Homesick Records


Homesick Records Tweede Rozendwarsstraat 24, 1016PE Amsterdam

On a side street of De Rozengracht, Bas Kleijn runs his Homesick Records shop. He started out a few years ago when he got his hands on a collection so big he just had to open a shop. It is THE place to go for Bob Dylan fans: Bas has dedicated the upstairs section of his shop only to Bob Dylan related records, CDs, books and magazines. The ground level part of the shop has a nicely organised selection of Pop, Rock, Soul and Jazz. You can expect to find some of the lesser known recordings by well-known names here.

Find Homesick Records on Discogs


InDeep’n’Dance Records


Indeep’n’Dance Records Rozengracht 60, 1016ND Amsterdam

Just around the corner, on De Rozengracht, two more Amsterdam record shops can be found. The first one is InDeep’n’Dance Records, as the name implies specialised in House and Techno. Indeep’n’Dance is also a record label, and owner DJ Dexon and his partner organise the free event ‘Techno Tuesday’ in De Melkweg in Amsterdam every week. DJ Mag NL recommend the shop as one of the best places to dig for Electronic music, and you can also find a selection of clothing and DJ gear here.


KillaCutz Records 


KillaCutz Records Nieuwe Nieuwstraat 21-hs, 1012 NG Amsterdam

KillaCutz Records can be found close to the Dam square in Amsterdam. There is a section with Funk, Soul, Hip Hop and Pop music, but they specialise in Electronic music. Apart from a few new releases, most of the records are second hand. You can expect to find Techno, Progressive, Minimal, Trance, Garage, Drum & Bass and more. And a bin with Guilty Pleasures to dig through!

Find KillaCutz Records on Discogs


Mary Go Wild

Mary_Go_Wild_Ext
Mary_Go_Wild_Int

Mary Go Wild Zeedijk 44, 1012 BA Amsterdam

After the book Mary Go Wild (about the history of dance music in the Netherlands) was released in 2013, a dedicated shop opened on the Zeedijk in 2014. It has become the place to go for dance-related books, gifts, clothing and vinyl records. Many new, some released on their own label, and some second hand. They organise in-store events regularly and the shop is also affiliated with Amsterdam Dance Event. Don’t hesitate to ask for recommendations for a good night out!

Find Mary Go Wild on Discogs

 


Platypus Records


Platypus_Records

Platypus Records, Zeedijk 45, 1012 AR Amsterdam

Named after the animal known for its digging skills, Platypus Records is the newest addition to this list. The shop was opened only two weeks ago by three friends who have spent years collecting and travelling all over the word searching for records. It’s situated on the Zeedijk, a few doors across from Mary Go Wild, and with Bordello A Parigi around the corner. From Funk, Soul, Hip Hop, Pop, Rock and World music to Dutch artists and aerobics records: If it has an interesting sound there is a place for it at Platypus.


Recordfriend Elpees

Recordfriend Elpees

Recordfriend Elpees Sint Antoniesbreestraat 64, 1011 HB Amsterdam

The Sint Antoniesbreestraat, once home to Rembrandt van Rijn, now houses a wonderful selection of cafés and specialty shops. RecordFriend is one of them, located just below street level, accessible by a few steps. At the entrance, you find yourself in a room full of bins with records priced at 5 Euro each, categorised by genre. Walking through to the next room, there is a small section with new releases, but most of the large space is occupied by second-hand records in just about every genre you can think of.

Find Recordfriend Elpees on Discogs


Record Mania


Record Mania Ferdinand Bolstraat 30, 1072 LK Amsterdam

The beautiful stained glass window in the back of the shop is an eye catcher, but it doesn’t detract from the hundreds of records that are on display at Record Mania. The shop has been around since 1994 and has a broad selection ranging from Rock & Soul to Dutch music, Comedy recordings and World music. There is also a large section with (Soul) singles, 14,000 CDs and a bargain basement. Check out this video and you’ll know why Theo Parrish likes to dig here.


Record Palace 

Record Palace Amsterdam

Record Palace Weteringschans 33A, 1017 RV Amsterdam

Just like Back Beat Records, Record Palace opened its doors 30 years ago, in 1988. The shop’s location, opposite the famous Paradiso concert venue, means that they regularly get visits from artists who are performing across the road. It couldn’t be more fitting that Record Palace celebrates its 30th anniversary at Paradiso, in September. When you’re browsing, you’ll notice many regular customers popping in, too. No CDs here, it’s all vinyl. There is an extensive selection of Jazz music downstairs and Rock, Pop, Soul, Reggae and more on the ground floor.

Find Record Palace on Discogs


Records & Books

Records And Books

Records & Books Nieuwezijds Voorburgwal 371, 1012RM Amsterdam

A five-minute walk from Dam Square, Records & Books is conveniently located near Spui Square and the tram line from Central Station. This is a collective, the shop space is shared between a record seller (In De Marge) and Exalto bookshop. In De Marge has been buying and selling Jazz and Pop music for over 20 years. Let them know what you’re looking for and they can help you find it!

Find In De Marge on Discogs


Red Light Records

Red Light Records Amsterdam

Red Light Records Oudekerksplein 26, 1012GZ Amsterdam

In the middle of the Red Light District, Red Light Records has found its home in a former prostitution window. They have managed to fit a well curated selection into the relatively small space, and although it can be busy it doesn’t feel cramped. It’s in a courtyard, so you’ll need to get in via the gate next to Red Light Radio (ring the bell to open the door).


Rush Hour Records


Rush Hour Records Spuistraat 116 1012 VA, Amsterdam

Rush Hour started out in 1997 and runs a record shop, mail order, label, distribution and events. With their label, they want to provide a platform for new talent and to unearth forgotten classics. The Rush Hour Store on the Spuistraat is light and spacious, with a feature wall full of records. Geared to the dance scene they stock mostly House, Techno, World Music, Funk, Soul and Jazz. New and used vinyl records and singles in abundance!

Find Rush Hour Records (New or Used) on Discogs


Second Life Music


Second Life Music Prinsengracht 366, 1016 JA Amsterdam

On the Prinsengracht you can find Second Life Music, and as the name of the shop suggests, they only sell second-hand items here: LPs, 12″s and singles in all genres, as well as CDs, record players and accessories. Second Life Music doesn’t sell online so head to the shop to find out what they have in stock. With two floors full of records you’re sure to find something!


Velvet Music Amsterdam


Velvet Music Amsterdam Rozengracht 40, 1016 NC Amsterdam

A few doors down from InDeep’n’Dance Records, the Amsterdam branch of the Velvet Music chain has found its home. Velvet Music started out in Leiden in 1990 and now has 14 record shops throughout The Netherlands, each with its own character. The Amsterdam record shop has a large selection of new and second-hand vinyl, new and second-hand CDs, and DVDs. It’s spacious and the table in the centre of the shop (where at the time of my visit a Beatles puzzle was being put together by people visiting the shop) is a nice space to hang out with fellow collectors.

Find Velvet Music Amsterdam on Discogs


Vintage Voudou

Vintage Voudou Records Amsterdam

Vintage Voudou Records Oudekerksplein 26, 1012 GZ Amsterdam

Next door to Red Light Records, in the same courtyard, it feels like Vintage Voudou Records has managed to fit the whole world into a few square meters. An extensive Funk & Soul section on one side and an exciting collection of Reggae and Exotic music on the other side, with original LPs and singles in genres like Bollywood, Latin, Suriname, Caribbean, Brazil, ‘World-Weird’ and more waiting to be discovered.

Find Vintage Voudou Records on Discogs


Waxwell Records

Waxwell Records

Waxwell Records Gasthuismolensteeg 8, 1016 AN Amsterdam

If you’re looking for Soul or Jazz, don’t miss out on Waxwell. And look up from the bins every now and then, because that holy grail item you’re looking for is probably looking right back at you from their wall display. Based in the picturesque 9 Streets shopping district, only a short distance from Dam square, the shop has been around since 2005. Waxwell also has a large selection of Rock, Hip-Hop, Reggae, World Music, Blues, Disco and Pop.

Find Waxwell Records on Discogs


Zap Records

Zap Records

Zap Records Paleisstraat 137, 1012 ZL Amsterdam

Zap Records opened its doors in November 2016 at a central location near Dam Square. This used to be a didgeridoo shop, and while those instruments are still available and displayed in the basement, the biggest part of the shop is now dedicated to vinyl records. The golden sparkly walls lined with colourful record sleeves are a feast for the eye. The shop has a large selection of Hip Hop in stock, and you can find most other genres here as well.

Find Zap Records on Discogs


Zwart Goud


Zwart Goud Geldersekade 89 s, 1011 EL Amsterdam

Zwart Goud is situated in a space just below street level, next to a bike rental shop. The shop opened in 2015, and since the owners of Zwart Goud started off as event organisers and regularly DJ themselves, it’s no surprise that the shop doubles as an event space and art gallery. Expect a selection of new and second hand Techno, House, Wave, Ambient, Synth, Disco Edits, Balearic and Turkish Psychedelic music here, as well as DJ gear and merchandise. By keeping their inventory at around 2,000 records, the owners make sure they have something new to offer all the time.

Find Zwart Goud on Discogs


And if that isn’t enough, from Monday to Saturday you can also find some stalls selling records at the famous market at Waterlooplein!


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Russ Ryan Crate Minds: An Interview With Ewan Of Rarekind Records

Rarekind is a Brighton community pillar and has been for well over a decade, diversifying through trends & generations to meet ever-changing demands whilst staying true to its roots of pushing fantastic soul-drenched records across a cross-section of genres.

An OG Art Gallery turned Record Shop, Owner and Manager Ewan has been behind the counter since day one and kindly took time out last week to have a chat with us about Rarekind’s past, present and future….

An Interview with Ewan Hood of Rarekind Records

How long have you been buying and selling records for and where did it start?

I’ve been buying records since the early ’90s and selling for a little over 15 years.

I used to buy stuff in the first incarnation of the Rarekind Gallery when it first opened and ended up working there part time and taking care of the record part of the store, it grew out of that, I used to do a lot of digging and would turn up stuff often, so when I started working in the shop I was able to introduce second hand stuff I’d found over the years alongside the new releases.

When Rarekind opened its doors how soon after did online sales come into play?

We started selling online when we moved to our current location on Trafalgar St, Brighton, around 2006-7, so 2-3 years after we started.

You’ve seen first hand the evolution in record-buying trends since doors, how healthy is the Brighton scene at the moment?

Brighton has always been a great place for records, being such a musical city and quite alternative, plus close to London there’s always been lots of shops and people interested. I’m constantly surprised by the interesting and unusual stuff that comes through the shop.

Right now I’d say things are very good, there are a few different shops who are good at what they do and everybody specialises in something slightly different. The city center is very compact so you can check most of them out in a short space of time.

The place is packed with music enthusiasts, and we also get a lot of visitors which helps, I think quite a few people head here specifically to check out Brighton’s Record shops

What’s your personal holy grail record?

Ah that’s an ever changing question, the couple that spring to mind are Smiff and Wessun Dah Shining (promo / test press) and Muchos Plus – Nassau’s Discos.

When did you start using Discogs and how do you use it in your day to day?

We joined discogs at the start of 2007 and had probably been using it for a little while before then. It’s integral to how we operate now, obviously for selling, but also the information is fantastic and has totally changed the game.

Any tips for people browsing your crates, in the shop and on Discogs?

Hopefully, our physical shop is a place where you’ll find some interesting and unusual well-priced stuff, my main tip would be to get stuck in and have a rummage, we have lots of cheap crates and new stock going out 4-5 times a week.

We keep most of our second-hand stuff exclusive to the shop, but we do put a few tasty and unusual bits up on our discogs. We generally have around 2,500 titles listed – the vast majority of our new releases are on there and we try to go direct to labels and artists as much as possible, so hopefully our discogs store has some interesting stuff.

What do you predict for the future of Rarekind and where are you aiming?

More of the same really, everyone who works here loves records and all we really try to do is provide the service and selection we would like to see if we were customers ourselves. We’ve done a couple of releases in collaboration with labels and artists in the past and would like to do more of that at some point.

I hope the current interest in vinyl continues and that new releases don’t become prohibitively expensive!

Massive thanks to Ewan for taking the time out to chat to us, if you’re ever in Brighton do go and pay his team a visit or check his online crates out if you’re further afield!

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Russ Ryan Crate Minds: An Interview With Julian Gascoigne of Rook Records

Rook Records opened its online doors in 2016 and has since had a meteoric rise through the Discogs seller charts. Specialising in Soul to Afro and Disco to Techno, Julian’s taste was founded & refined in over a decade of digging and now, luckily for us, shared with the world!

We paid a visit to Rook Towers last week to have a catch up with the man himself, to gain an insight into how this all started and to the inner workings of Rook Record’s operation.

Interview with Julian Gascoigne of Rook Records

How long have you been buying and selling records for and where did it start?

I started Rook Records in 2016. I’d been DJing professionally for the last few years but got tired of the late nights and being forced to take gigs that bored the hell out of me. I always knew I wanted to start a business, and with vinyl being on the up and having always been an avid collector, it seemed like the perfect fit. I had originally planned to open a coffee / vinyl shop in London, but when the application for the place I found fell through, I started trading online as a stop-gap till I found another place. I guess that stop-gap is still going on…

At what stage did the vinyl habit turn into a viable business?

I guess pretty quickly after I started trading. I’d built a decent website and starting listing stuff on Discogs, and pretty soon I was turning over enough for a (very) small wage. I supplemented it with DJ gigs for the first year or so, but after a while it just became apparent that I had no spare time for anything else, and at that time it became my full-time gig.

Tell us about are the benefits and drawbacks of being online only?

As I alluded to in the first question, I had originally wanted a shop. I guess the appeal of that is the social aspect, meeting other vinyl heads and chatting about music is a pretty sweet job. However, there are a tonne of benefits to being online only. One of the main things I love is having my weekends back. Having always DJ’d for money, weekends were always work-time for me. So being online only, I operate normal business hours and it generally means I get to hang out on the weekends now, which definitely pays dividends in my relationships and social life.

Personal holy grail record?

Price Exchange – Deception

It goes in phases I guess, but for the last year or so it’s got to be Deception by Price Exchange on 7″. It’s a killer soul jam with an afro cuban kind of edge used by Madlib in a track he did with Guilty Simpson. I’ve always been hankering for a copy (I’m hoping me saying this doesn’t drive the price up on Discogs?!)

Favourite record you are stocking today?

Hotline – You Are Mine

I’m actually holding an OG of Hotline’s You Are Mine (also titled Can You Do It?). It’s a Nigerian boogie LP from 1986 and is absolute fire. The condition’s pretty mashed though, but I guess that adds to the charm somewhat.

Top three record shops?

Rarekind Records

Lived about 100 yards from this one for a good few years. The owner Ewan is always super helpful, and the shop holds some killer stock, especially if you’re into your hip hop, funk and soul (which I certainly am).

Honest Jons

My bro used to work in this shop, so I used to frequent it whenever I had some spare digging cash as a kid. They’re the ones that put me on to various African and Latin bits that started me off in a love affair with those genres and is definitely one of the key reasons why Rook specialises in those kinds of records.

Alan’s Records

Certainly one of the destination London shops, this one’s bang in the middle of East Finchley and a bunch of A roads. Alan’s got a killer selection of jazz and fusion, among numerous other noteworthy things, and his knowledge and friendly demeanor are second to none. Added in the fact that if you go mid-week, you’ve usually got the place all to yourself to dig to your heart’s content!

How do you use Discogs in your day to day?

Discogs is a vital tool for me. Business-wise I couldn’t run without it, simple as. It accounts for a significant proportion of my sales and is pretty much open constantly on my work laptop. As a general vinyl head too though, it’s the most incredible tool. If ever a tune catches my ear, my first port of call is the Discogs app on my phone so I can check the price and add it to my Wantlist (where it may stay for some time… I tend to have expensive taste).

Any tips for people browsing your crates?

Just enjoy it really, after all that’s what this is all about. We try and put audio clips up for everything on the site, so just see where your ears take you!

What do you predict for the future of Rook Records and where are you aiming?

In general, I guess I’m just hoping for more of the same. I’m one of those annoying people who loves their job, so as long as I can keep doing it, it’s fine by me. We’ve started running a Rook Records YouTube channel where we get DJs to send us in filmed vinyl mixes of their favourite records. I guess I’m hoping to expand this more creative side of the business, and potentially use it to launch a record label and perhaps some events in the near future. I’m planning to set up a little make-shift studio in our new Hackney HQ, so hopefully we’ll get some live stuff broadcasting out from there soon. Watch this space…

Huge huge thank you to Julian for giving us the Rook Records 101. Hugely exciting times ahead, go check out his digital crates for the full picture!

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Javi Gómez Martínez Press It Again, Sam! 15 Albums Which Need To Be Reissued

There is one thing he can’t buy… a dinosaur!

– Homer Simpson

It might be true that the “Simpsons did it first” meme applies to almost every single thing that has happened in the 21st century. In Season 3 of The Simpsons, infamous TV presenter Kent Brockman couldn’t buy a dinosaur with all the money he won in the lottery. Let’s think about how that could apply to the Discogs community. What can you not buy even if you win the lottery? Exactly, records which have never been pressed in vinyl or which are very scarce (well I mean, you can buy the latter but this introduction would sound less dramatic).

Conversations about albums in serious need of a reissue happen all the time in the Discogs forums. In order to do my research, I could use two different methods:

  • The scientific method: Involves a lot of hard work and endless hours of research, most likely leading to disappointment and hitting my head against the keyboard on one or several occasions.
  • The slacker method: Sneakily sharing a meme with our community and wait for all of you to do the work.

Sorry not sorry, I actually never meant for all of this to happen but after reading all of your comments, I knew I had to do something with it. So no, this is not some sort of evil masterplan, this is just me trying to amplify your voice and, who knows, maybe we can get some label out there to reissue these albums in the future.

15 albums that the Discogs Community wants to see reissued:

AFX ‎– Analogue Bubblebath 5

AFXAnalogue Bubblebath 5

As you might know, the mighty Richard D. James goes by plenty of nicknames. With a wildly expansive discography and his eternal status as a cult artist (at the same time as a successful one, which is not a common thing), some of his records have been out of print for decades. Thanks to the magic of blatant lies, 310 Discogs users claim to own this record, while 1,447 would like to own it.

Current availability

There aren’t any copies available for sale at the moment, but feel free to add it to your Wantlist.

Alice In Chains ‎– Facelift album cover

Alice In ChainsFacelift

The first album by Seattle grunge band Alice In Chains has never been properly reissued on vinyl besides several bootlegged copies during the last 29 years, turning it into an obsession for fans worldwide. This is quite special since this album sold more than 2 million copies, but it was released at a time when CDs were already more popular than vinyl records.

Current availability

Just so you know, a NM copy of Facelift won’t be yours for less than $100.

Beck ‎– Midnite Vultures album cover

BeckMidnite Vultures

The year 2000 wasn’t exactly what you would call the hottest year in the history of vinyl. By then, our beloved format was not very popular for new releases. That was the case of Midnite Vultures, the album by Beck containing the megahit “Sexx Laws”. Highly sought after among the fans of the eclectic artist, only a limited run of vinyl records was ever pressed by the label Bong Load Records.

Current availability

Feel free to get it starting at more than $180 if you’re feeling extra.

Fiona AppleWhen The Pawn…

It’s hard to believe that this masterpiece by Fiona Apple (I mean masterpiece like every other Fiona Apple album ever released) has never been released on vinyl. We’ve heard the rumors that some reissue label out there was working on it long time ago, but we haven’t had any further news. And we need to own them all!

Current availability

Forget about it.

Guided By Voices Same Place The Fly Got Smashed album cover

Guided By Voices ‎– Same Place The Fly Got Smashed

It’s easy to get lost in the vast catalog of Guided By Voices, we’re not going to lie. The alternative rock outfit fronted by the endlessly inventive Robert Pollard has released a whopping total of 168 releases since 1987. Fans of the band from Dayton, Ohio aren’t exactly what you would call casual and a lot of them (sorry, us) will kill to be able to have a complete collection of all their output. With a proportion of 74 “haves” and 460 “wants”, this release seems to be the definitive holy grail.

Current availability

There is only one copy for sale for $1,450 (ouch!).

Hope Sandoval & The Warm Inventions ‎– Through The Devil Softly album cover

Hope Sandoval & The Warm InventionsThrough The Devil Softly

Hope Sandoval made the very long hiatus of Mazzy Star easy for fans. Over the late nineties and the 2000s, she collaborated with a lot of other artists like Air, Massive Attack, The Jesus and Mary Chain, The Chemical Brothers…and she also started her own personal project: Hope Sandoval & The Warm Inventions. They have released three albums so far. The one in the middle, Through The Devil Softly, has never been pressed on vinyl.

Current availability

Sorry. It just doesn’t exist in vinyl, but you can still buy a CD if you want to own it.

Massive Attack ‎– 100th Window album cover

Massive Attack100th Window

You really never know what Robert del Naja is up to. One day he might be releasing game-changing music with Massive Attack and the next one being a world-renowned street artist in disguise (I mean, maybe? ¯_(ツ)_/¯). Either way, there is one album that was mentioned by some of you which could do with a reissue, and that’s their 2003 forward-thinking 100th Window.

Current availability

If you really need this record right now, you can count yourself lucky, prices for a NM copy range from $93 to $356 roughly.

P J Harvey ‎– Rid Of Me album cover

PJ HarveyRid Of Me

Alright, yes, this was our own idea BUT we can see many of you reacted to it, my favorite comment being the one Christopher Convex in our Facebook post: “Never in the history of music did an album from the ’90s deserve a remaster so badly!” Amen, brother. Please, can someone make this happen soon?

Current availability

The record doesn’t reach stratospheric prices, but you won’t land a copy in your Collection for less than $160.

Sparklehorse ‎– Good Morning Spider album cover

SparklehorseGood Morning Spider

Believe it or not, it’s already been 9 years since Mark Linkous took his life. We have to thank him for some of the most beautiful songs an indie rock artist has ever produced. Good Morning Spider, released in 1998, showed an artist and a project at its best. Emotional, raw, complex, candid, and yet poetic and magical.

Current availability

There aren’t many copies available for sale, but you can check it out yourself here.

The Cure - Wish album cover

The CureWish

There isn’t a fan of The Cure on Earth who won’t mention how much Wish deserves a reissue. It’s true, the album was released on vinyl back in 1992 (even though most likely with fewer copies than its CD version) and it hasn’t been reissued since. Every The Cure fan should have the opportunity to listen to classics like “High”, “From The Edge Of The Deep Green Sea” or “Friday I’m In Love” in his/her turntable. Can’t anybody do something about it? We demand an answer.

Current availability

The good news is that there are a lot of copies available in our Marketplace.

The Mars Volta ‎– De-Loused In The Comatorium album cover

The Mars Volta ‎– De-Loused In The Comatorium

This is exactly what I was looking for right now. The Mars Volta insane debut De-Loused In The Comatorium was released in 2003, one of the worst years for vinyl sales. According to the information on Discogs, 15,000 copies of the album were released in total back in the day (first with a batch of 5,000 copies, and then with another one of 10,000 copies). That was it, the album was received with a great deal of critical and commercial success. In 2014, the Dutch reissue label Music on Vinyl answered the prayers of fans worldwide with a new edition in vinyl of De-Loused In The Comatorium. The bad news? Those reissued albums have reached very high prices in our Marketplace as well. Oh, the irony!

Current availability

Be our guest.

The Smashing Pumpkins ‎– Machina / The Machines Of God album cover

The Smashing PumpkinsMachina / The Machines Of God

Even though some of you suggested Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness, after a quick check I realized that there are several versions with pretty decent prices (let’s take into account we’re speaking about four LPs). But that got me thinking… what about the last album The Smashing Pumpkins released during their first run together? Machina / The Machines Of God arrived at a time when CD was set to dominate the music industry forever (little did we know…), and therefore the release on vinyl was limited. Hopefully, some label boss reads this and reissues the album 😉

Current availability

You can land a copy on Discogs, but it won’t be cheap.

Throbbing Gristle with Albrecht/d. ‎– Music From The Death Factory cassette album cover

Throbbing Gristle with Albrecht/d. ‎– Music From The Death Factory

Released in 1976, Music From The Death Factory is the most highly sought album by wreckers of civilisation (sic) Throbbing Gristle. This really needs a reissue! 51 Discogs users claim to own it and it’s never been sold in our Marketplace. Moreover, it was originally released in cassette, so a vinyl edition would be incredible (if you’re into stuff which will probably make you feel extremely uneasy).

Current availability

That’s not a possibility right now.

Tom Petty ‎– Wildflowers album cover

Tom PettyWildflowers

You’re still missing Tom Petty and so are we (it’s hard to believe two years have passed since he left us). In a discography full of great albums, Wildflowers stands out as one of the most beloved releases among his fans. Just by checking the prices on Discogs, it’s clear that we could all do with a cheaper reissue of this album.

Current availability

Up to you, but you won’t be able to find anything under almost $275.

Tool ‎– Ænima album cover

ToolÆnima

I don’t know anyone with equidistant feelings about Tool. Either you love them or you hate them, and normally it goes with sheer intensity in both ways. These days, they are everywhere thanks to the release of their long-awaited comeback album: Fear Inoculum. But back in 1996, their second album Ænima was a huge success, and, for many, it remains their best album.

Current availability

Well…just so you know, Ænima won’t be yours on vinyl for less than $500.

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Russ Ryan Crate Minds: An Interview With Will Baxter of ColdCuts // HotWax

Since its conception & launch in 2015, Will’s ColdCuts // HotWax has grown from strength to strength specialising in the club-centric Electronic, Dance & Disco crossover and never compromising on quality.

ColdCuts // HotWax’s unassuming entrance could lead to any old warehouse, but on entry you have an orderly & perfectly categorised wax wonderland, priding itself on reliability, speed & dope records! ColdCuts // HotWax is strictly online, predominantly selling on Discogs, but Will and his team have an expanded vision of a shop front for the business and much much more.

Big boss man Will took time out to give us an insight into the story, workings & future of ColdCuts // HotWax!

Interview with Will Baxter of ColdCuts // HotWax

Where did it all start, and when you first started out, did you picture this?

ColdCuts // HotWax came about really as a natural progression from my uni days spent listening to, playing and selling records. I always loved curating music for events, pushing new records to my mates and digging around record shops for second-hand bits. So when it came to graduation and the panic set in of what next, I decided to sell some of my record collection and start up ColdCuts // HotWax.

I never pictured it going this far. I always thought I’d try it out for a year, learn some lessons and move on. But thanks to all those independent record labels pushing out great music and the support of our loyal customers, we’re still going strong four years later.

You’ve had a meteoric rise through Discogs, what are the key things you focus on when it comes to selling?


From the start, I wanted to make sure the music in our store was carefully curated. If I didn’t enjoy something I wouldn’t bring it in. Over time that may change as we look to expand into different genres, but at the beginning, I think it’s important when selling records it comes directly from what you love.

Also with selling over the internet, you do lose the personal touch you get with buying a record in a record shop. So, with our service, we’ve focused on making it as personable as possible. Treat people how you’d like to be treated. It’s an often-used mantra but it’s important to remind yourself of that when your back is up against the wall with replying to messages and getting orders out in time.

When did you start using Discogs and how do you use it in the day to day operation of CCHW?

We’ve used Discogs from the beginning. It’s been instrumental in getting us off the ground, especially in helping us shift those second-hand bits. Without Discogs, it would’ve taken a lot longer to get our name and catalogue out there.

Do you have a holy grail record?

I’ve always quite liked finding an obscure record, rather than those holy grails.

JKD Band – Dragon Power

I found a tribute album to Bruce Lee titled Dragon Power by a UK band called JKD Band. ‘Africa’ and ‘Dream Machine’ are the ones that really caught my ear on the album. Real bumping disco-funk tracks, which you’d never associate with a Bruce Lee tribute album!

Bill – I Feel Good With You / Space Lady

Also, another one I’m quite rating at the moment is a 45 single titled I Feel Good With You / Space Lady by Bill. The track on the A is great but that Space Lady on the flip is honestly one of the nicest songs I’ve heard in a while. I guess that one has holy grail potential but you can still pick it up for like 50 or 60 quid, so it won’t rob you of food for a month.

What can we expect from CCHW in the future?

In the near future, we’re hopefully going to take a step into the record label territory. Our idea is to split our releases between two labels; one for contemporary music and the other for reissuing old gems from the past.

Also, in the distant future, we have plans to get a proper brick and mortar shop going. That’s always been the ambition from the beginning, so hopefully we’ll be able to fulfill it one day.

Big thanks to Will for taking the time out, we can’t wait to see his project develop over the coming years and be sure to check the ColdCuts // HotWax catalogue.

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Kat Bein Elbow: An Abbreviated Album History

Every generation has its poets, and Elbow frontman Guy Garvey is an everyman lyricist for the ages. His passionate rhyme and flowering diction make noble the grit of years spent in pubs, the chaos of industrial city streets, and the ho-hum of a modern mind’s musings. The band reflects its home of Manchester through and through, but with grand instrumentation and sweeping emotion, Elbow takes its blue-collar attitudes to lofty heights.

Elbow formed in Manchester in 1990 under a different name but took up this famous moniker in 1997. Garvey is joined by Craig Potter on keyboard, piano and backing vocals, Mark Potter on guitar and backing vocals, Pete Turner on bass and backing vocals, and Richard Jupp on drums. Their mix of droning rhythms and sweet melodies sounds quite inspired by The Velvet Underground, except they layer all these sounds into one, then add big orchestral moments and wonderful use of bright harmonies.

The band has been showered in critical appreciation since its earliest days, with three Mercury Music Prize nominations and a win. Its song “First Steps” became the BBC theme for the 2012 London Olympics, and its eighth studio album is to be released Friday, Oct. 11. Here is a complete breakdown of Elbow‘s catalog thus far.

Elbow: An Album History

Asleep In The Back

(2001)

The songs of Asleep in the Back were written over the course of six years, six of which were rerecorded tunes from those ill-fated Island sessions. The dreamy, dreary 12-track collection spoke to the quiet doubts and everyday shortcomings of the common man. Garvey‘s lyrics speak of addiction (“Red,” “Powder Blue”), boredom (“Any Day Now”), fear of growth (“Presuming Ed [Rest Easy]”), nostalgia (“Scattered Black and Whites”), and sexual desire (“Bitten By The Tailfly”) in a tender way with a somewhat beaten and tired delivery. Even its love songs – including the title track that actually came later as a bonus – are twisted depictions. The music’s ethereal atmospheres and bursts of bright, chaotic boldness give movement to the mood, conjuring a cinematic feeling from start to finish. It’s beautiful in a really modern and relatable way, and it was shortlisted for the Mercury Music Prize while it earned the band a BRIT Award nomination for Best New British Band.

Cast Of Thousands

(2003)

Elbow‘s second record is a celebration on a gray Sunday afternoon. Its 11 official tracks ebb and sway with a calm pace between gloomy moods (“Ribcage,” “Fugitive Motel”), upbeat tempos (“Snooks [Progress Report]”), clashing distortion and emotive exuberance. The title is a reference to their 2002 Glastonbury performance. The band recorded the audience singing, “we still believe in love, so fuck you,” then featured the sample on the climactic track “Grace Under Pressure.” The record plays through with spots of psychedelia a la the Beatles in Magical Mystery Tour, especially on “Fallen Angel” and “Grace Under Pressure,” then wraps with a short and detached sort of ode to love in dreams. Bonus Japanese and American editions include “Whisper Grass,” “Brave New Shave,” and “Lay Down Your Cross” in various arrangements.

Leaders Of The Free World

(2005)

The band’s third album was entirely self-produced and showcases an edgier rock attitude, chock full of catchy melodic hooks with hair-raising electric guitar. “Forget Myself” opens with a rhythm made from industrial clashes and moves toward a triumphant mess. “Leader of the Free World” sees Garvey take on politics, commenting on the re-election of George W. Bush as US President, whom he sees as a sniveling little boy. Even the acoustic ballads pack a bit of an upbeat punch, from the reflective “The Everthere” to sweet breakup anthem “The Stops.” Lots of songs center around loving someone despite their letting you go, as well as familiar themes of nights spent in bars. The cover depicts five characters form the album’s songs. The Japanese version includes bonus tracks “McGreggor” and “The Good Day.” Integrated music and video DVD. “Mexican Standoff” was also recorded in Spanish, a B-side to the titular single release.

The Seldom Seen Kid

(2008)

This LP beat out Radiohead‘s In Rainbows (itself is very reminiscent of old Elbow) for the Mercury Music Prize. It’s highly orchestral and cinematic with lots of rock groove, a clear moment of growth artistically and emotionally. “Starlings” opens with an exciting mix of quiet melodies and startling blasts. The Western-tinged rocker “Grounds of Divorce” became a huge hit for the band. It’s about a friend of Garvey‘s named Bryan Glancy, who died from excessive drinking. He calls him “the seldom seen kid,” a line from which the LP gets its name. The album’s original closing track, a heartbreaker called “A Friend of Ours,” was written by Glancy and sung in tribute. Mostly, though, The Seldom Seen Kid is fresh and upbeat, begetting the band’s biggest hit to date, “One Day Like This,” which has become a popular wedding song. The UK-version of the LP concludes with a hidden bonus track called “We’re Away” that follows the closing-track “Friend of Ours” after five minutes of silence. A special deluxe edition also includes non-album track “Hotel Istanbul” and “lullaby.”

Build A Rocket Boys!

(2011)

An album all about growing up and going through the awkward and important teenage years, Garvey looked to the past to find lyrical inspiration, because success and money had made it hard to write about the present with Elbow-esque discontent. The album was made with the ease of success in the air, but they were conscious not to try to repeat the motions. Indeed, Build A Rocket Boys! Wades between the catchy rock hits of The Seldom Seen Kid (“With Love,” “Neat Little Rows”) and the somber, humming atmospherics of earlier works (“The Night Will Always Win”). It’s sweeping and uplifting on opener “The Birds,” as it welcomes the nostalgia while chiding those that tell old men not to spend too much time in reverie. “Lippy Kids,” the album’s bit hit from which it takes its name, celebrates hoody-wearing teens who get an unjust bad wrap. The self-produced LP is as experimental as ever and was Elbow‘s third Mercury Prize nomination.

The Take Off And Landing Of Everything

(2014)

Imbued with Garvey‘s breakup from longtime girlfriend Emma Jane Unsworth, this sixth studio album plays in blue and grey hues, but everything’s got a silver lining. The Takeoff And Landing Of Everything means that the endings of life’s adventures are as important as their beginnings, and the title track serves as the emotional climax with a sprawling seven-minute epic that settles in a repetitive mantra. The album was also partially inspired by time Garvey spent in New York City, most notably on the uplifting urban wonder of “New York Morning,” while “Charge” and “My Sad Captains” keep the drinking song tradition. The four songs “Real Life (Angel),” “Honey Sun,” “Colour Field” and “Fly Boy Blue/Lunette” featuring music written primarily by other members, and the album’s final song, “The Blanket of Night,” shares an often unheard human side of the refugee story, which remains a hot political point in Elbow‘s England and around the world today.

Little Fictions

(2017)

If The Takeoff And Landing Of Everything was Elbow‘s break-up album, Little Fictions is a record about new love and renewal. It is the first without the band’s founding drummer Richard Jupp who left to pursue other projects, which perhaps explains some of the jazzier rhythms on “Gentle Storm” and “K2.” In the years since The Takeoff, Garvey met the woman who became his wife. The album was released about two months before their first child was born, an immense and joyous change reflected in the lyrics of “Magnificent (She Says)” and the eight-minute title track. “All Disco” was inspired by a comment Pixies frontman Black Francis quipped to Garvey about not taking the specifics of things too seriously, “K2” reflects the chaos of the Brexit vote, and the video for “Gentle Storm” features actor Benedict Cumberbatch.

Giants Of All Sizes

(2019)

The band comes out swinging with distorted guitars and glitchy orchestral clips on this eighth studio album that tackles issues of discord and discomfort at home and abroad. As the band’s native England finds itself further muddied by the chaos of Brexit, Elbow blends a harder alt-rock edge into its signature emotional ambiance. “Dexter and Sinister” kicks things off with a six-minute, two-part musical journey, while “Seven Veils” follows with a poetic ballad. “Empires” is a prog-rock beauty that mirrors personal faults against greater political mess. Hints of the right-wing political wave color the lyrics of “The Delayed 3:15” while “White Noise White Heat” tackles injustice and apathy. It’s the band’s heaviest album yet, in terms of percussion and attitude, though it still swims with moody atmospheres. It’s a strong offering for a band that lives squarely in its own sweet spot for two decades running.

Produced in partnership with Polydor

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Jeffrey Smith Your Guide To Japanese Music, By Light In The Attic’s Yosuke Kitazawa

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We have an incredible guest post from Yosuke Kitazawa from Light In The Attic Records. Yosuke is the Reissue Producer for LITA and is their resident Japanese music expert. He also produced and co-curated Even A Tree Can Shed Tears: Japanese Folk & Rock 1969-1973. In other words, Yosuke knows of what he speaks. Yosuke was kind enough to share a guide to Japanese music with Discogs for those wanting to dive into some incredible tunes out of Japan! If you’re looking for a good jumping-off point for getting into Japanese music, this is it.

A Light In The Attic's Yosuke Kitazawa in a bar in Shibuya talking about Japanese music
Yosuke Kitazawa at BYG in Shibuya.

There’s been a surge of interest in older Japanese music lately, due in part to the number of recent reissues of excellent music that had been unavailable outside of Japan. From the likes of Yasuaki Shimizu, Midori Takada, Hiroshi Yoshimura, or the overlooked folk-rock scene of the ’60s-’70s, the floodgates are slowly opening up to reveal the incredible amount of amazing music that has rarely been heard outside of Japan, at least outside of collector and DJ circles.

It might be a slow trickle, but it’s good to see that labels from all sides of the world are working together to make these releases happen — and that there’s enough interest and fans hungry for new (old) music to make it a worthwhile endeavor.

Five Essential Japanese Albums:



  • A Guide To Japanese Music: GS I Love You Too (Japanese Garage Bands Of The 1960s)

    Compilation – GS I Love You Too (Japanese Garage Bands Of The 1960s)

    (1999)

    There’s been a number of unofficial releases of Japanese “Group Sounds”/garage bands before this, but ‘GS I Love You’ from 1999 was probably the first legitimately licensed compilation of this music to be released outside of Japan. Big Beat/Ace Records and compilation producer extraordinaire Alec Palao did an excellent job introducing the world to classic bands like The Spiders, The Carnabeats and The Tempters, whose take on post-Beatlemania psych beat music puts any garage band to shame – at the very least in the amount of fuzz that shot out of their Vox or Mosrite guitar clones. Big Beat has continued with their lovingly produced archival releases of Japanese music, with a compilation of the “Japanese Link WrayTakeshi Terauchi, two compilations of Japanese “Ye-Ye” style music, and more recently a collection of Japanese disco.

  • A Guide To Japanese Music: Various ‎– Love, Peace & Poetry - Japanese Psychedelic Music

    Compilation – Love, Peace & Poetry – Japanese Psychedelic Music

    (2001)

    The legitimacy of this 2001 compilation may be a bit dubious, but it had a fairly high profile release as part of a massive series of psychedelic music from around the world. Released in the days before music blogs and YouTube uploads, this was ear-opening for many people. The compilation introduced heavy psych bands like Apryl Fool (with Haruomi Hosono and Takashi Matsumoto, soon to form Happy End), Blues Creation and Speed, Glue & Shinki (many of them detailed in Julian Cope’s book, ‘Japrocksampler‘, from 2007), whose records to this day are very rare and have never been released outside of Japan.

  • A Guide To Japanese Music: Maki Asakawa ‎– Maki Asakawa album cover

    Maki AsakawaMaki Asakawa

    (2015)

    In 2015 the fine folks at Honest Jon’s along with “Japan Blues” mastermind Howard Williams put together a deserving retrospective of Asakawa’s dark and smokey folk blues, the first time her music has been released outside of Japan. Interestingly, this compilation was later released back in Japan as “Maki Asakawa UK Selection” – attesting to how a different perspective and context can breathe new life into something familiar.

  • A Guide To Japanese Music: Tokyo Flashback Compilation

    Compilation – Tokyo Flashback

    (1991)

    Japanese underground music from the ‘80s and beyond is much more well represented compared to that of the decades before — bands like Ghost and Keiji Haino have seen relatively wide releases in this part of the globe. Nevertheless, this 2017 Black Editions reissue of the legendary compilation from Tokyo’s PSF Records is an important release, recontextualizing those two and six other singular artists on the label, run by the enigmatic Hideo Ikeezumi, whose Modern Music store became a hub for the scene.

  • Essential Japanese Albums: Even A Tree Can Shed Tears: Japanese Folk & Rock 1969-1973

    Compilation – Even A Tree Can Shed Tears: Japanese Folk & Rock 1969-1973

    (2017)

    The first officially licensed compilation of its kind, this collection features folk and rock artists who went beyond their influences to create a wholly new type of Japanese music that equally embraced their American/British influences and their Japaneseness, deliberately choosing to sing in their mother tongue. It’s refreshing to see and hear that this scene was not merely a copy of their influences, but peers who created timeless music that deserves to be heard around the world.

A few other great Japanese artists whose music is relatively easier to find outside of Japan are Yellow Magic Orchestra, Seigen OnoFar East Family Band, Osamu Kitajima, and Toru Takemitsu.

If you are interested in Japanese vinyl and have time, travel to Japan, visit and dig at Discogs Presents Mystic Crates on November 2nd! See you there!!!

The post Your Guide To Japanese Music, By Light In The Attic’s Yosuke Kitazawa appeared first on Discogs Blog.

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