Posts Tagged ‘Domino Record Co.’

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Serfs Up! April 19th

I suppose it was almost exactly two years ago that myself and what was left of this band exiled ourselves to Sheffield in search of yet another renaissance, with only our unshakable dedication to the struggle and a copy of The Commodores ‘Nightshift’ to pull us through. Most Londoners never have and never will fully understand the true horrors of a northern winter, what that much grey sky can do to the human heart. We baptised ourselves again and again in her bitter drizzle, feeding on the monotony of it all as if it were the nectar of the elect. And by the side of a rotten canal in a room half the size of a public toilet, armed with a limited equipment budget, our wits and time, we once again set upon revealing the true face of God, measuring out his/her/their glorious countenance in rhyme, meter, groove and melody.

It is with deep and terrible glee therefore that i can at long last announce the arrival of our 3rd full confession ‘Serfs Up!’ on April 19th of this very year. The first single ‘Feet’ marks our re-entry and is featured below,

Band Members
lias, saul, nathan, adam, taishi, severin

Fat White Family – “Feet”, from ‘Serfs Up!’, out 19th April 2019 on Domino Record Co.

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If the whole gender debate/subject matter puts you off, don’t let it. Like with Christine and the Queens such concepts and subject matter can rather get in the way of some great songs. This year for Anna Calvi and Christine and the Queens and on both occasions a interviewer hardly asked them about music at all, so pre-occupied were they about ‘gender journeys’, sexuality etc. (Calvi wasn’t impressed with the female journalist asking her about ‘big dick energy’!). Not that that these discussions aren’t interesting, but hey, I’m here for the songs, and luckily her latest album “Hunter” is full of great ones. ‘As A Man’ is a fine and strident opener and has some lovely guitar playing, while ‘Don’t Beat The Girl Out Of My Boy’ was the hooky number that got me interested in the first place. Calvi is a brilliant performer and the songs on ‘Hunter’ bristle with atmosphere, intimacy and menace, like something you might find on a David Lynch soundtrack. Thoroughly Recommended.

Anna Calvi – “As a Man” from Hunter, out now on Domino Record Co.

This single from Dirty Projectors’ Lamp Lit Prose maintains the band’s trademark indie/art rock fusion while continuing the electronic/R&B sound from last year’s self-titled record. The song and album mark “a recommitment to the sounds and ideals of Dirty Projectors, embracing the band’s trademarks while pushing forward the sonic envelope” with guitars and intricate harmonies returning to the fold, as evidenced by “Break-Thru.” The lyrical content is another shift for the group, as frontman Dave Longstreth seeks “a restorative balance” after his breakup with former Dirty Projectors bandmate and ex-girlfriend Amber Coffman. Longstreth sings, “She’s a break-thru / Under the sun, there’s nothing new / But she keeps it 100 in the shade, she’s a break-thru / It’s cold out here, that’s nothing new / But she keeps it 100, she’s a break-thru.”

This album by one of the powerhouses of indie rock, released by a major indie label might feel like a weird inclusion here, but when the Dirty Projectors make their best album since Bitte Orca , and it’s met with a muted response, it ends up here. David Longstreth’s narrative was too tidy for 2017’s Dirty Projectors — guy breaks up with his creative muse, they make albums from different sides of a breakup — so this album, which is largely about new love and finding personal fulfillment and salvation in a new lover, felt like it was tacked on as a coda to a story that’s already been written. But songs like “I Found It In You” and the bonkers doo-wop of “What Is The Time” deserved better; they should be soundtracking the artisanal bakeries and kombucha bars of Williamsburg and the Highlands and Silver Lake right now.

Dirty Projectors – “Break-Thru” from ‘Lamp Lit Prose’, out now on Domino Record Co.

Villagers

Conor O’Brien’s fourth Villagers album further confirms the supreme talent of the man. Where his lyrical prowess and ear for a tune has always been present, The Art Of Pretending To Swim adds to the Dubliner’s credentials by being largely written, recorded and produced by him too. As such, it’s affirmation of the songwriter’s talent while providing evidence of a leap in sonic progress that builds on a foundation of acoustic folk. O’Brien has been an artist willing to share his innermost thoughts and, yet, The Art Of Pretending To Swim feels like a new chapter in the Villagers story. O’Brien isn’t afraid to tackle the existentialism that comes with modernity whether it’s writing insightfully about creative renewal, technology, historical figures or personal confessions. The results are so moving, and so relatable, is a testament to his artistic vision.

Villagers – “Fool” from ‘The Art of Pretending to Swim’, out now on Domino Record Co.

 

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Washington D.C. trio Flasher released their debut album Constant Image earlier this year via Domino Records and it made its way into our albums of the year list. “Material” is one of the album’s most infectious, vibrant cuts as Flasher’s ping-ponging, overlapping pop vocals make for possibly the most satisfying vocal tradeoff you’ll hear all year. Bassist Danny Saperstein’s snotty, playful vocal delivery circles around Emma Baker’s snappy drums as guitarist Taylor Mulitz joins Baker for an unparalleled, ethereal shoegaze vocal rapture (“Construct / Interrupt / Material”). The video is a post-modern, late-capitalist deconstruction of Internet culture, and its surreal humor sheds a light on just how pervasive and crazy that culture has become. Twenty seconds in, they purposely freeze the video—spinning onscreen circle, cursor, groans and all—before clicking onto a fake lyric video of the song and resuming the tune. What follows is a series of absurd Internet parodies of the band performing the track—an a cappella version, an instructional dance video, a cringeworthy karaoke version and a behind-the-scenes clip.

They even make a satirical advertisement for socks so high they can’t fall down and a fake conspiracy theory video that accuses the band of having Illuminati ties. It closes with the band being devoured by a devil-like creature—perhaps a reference to the real-life, often ignored ramifications of constant entertainment, connection and sensory overload.

Flasher – “Material” from ‘Constant Image’, out now on Domino Record Co.

Way back in July last year, Cat Power announced she had her tenth album “ready to go“. Now almost a year later, the follow up to her 2012 album Sun has been announced. Wanderer  released on October 5th via Domino.

The trailer for the new album, accompanied by new music. From what we’ve heard so far, it’s a step back into her folk rock roots. A big change after Sun which featured a lot of electronic elements.

Produced entirely by Chan Marshall AKA Cat Power herself, the album features guest vocals from Lana Del Rey whom Marshall was recently supporting on tour. The new record tells the story of “my journey so far” over 11 tracks says Marshall. “The course my life has taken in this journey – going from town to town, with my guitar, telling my tale; with reverence to the people who did this generations before me. Folk singers, blues singers, and everything in between. They were all wanderers, and I am lucky to be among them.”

In 2006, Chan Marshall was visiting a shop in Memphis when she happened upon an instrument—not necessarily one that most readers of this magazine would find covetable—that spoke to her. It was an abused, no-name nylon-string that cost only $40. Marshall, who performs under the stage name Cat Power (borrowed from a trucker’s hat decorated with the phrase Cat Diesel Power), has since relied on the instrument as her songwriting muse, and she used its subdued voice to excellent effect on her latest album, Wanderer, her first in six years.

At 46, Marshall, whose first name is pronounced Shawn, has long been an indie-rock icon. After a childhood spent in Georgia, North Carolina, and Tennessee, where she absorbed the region’s Baptist, blues, and country sounds, she moved to New York City in 1992 and was exposed to an entirely different scene of free jazz and improvisation. Her earliest shows in the city were semi-improvised, but beginning with her first full-length album, 1995’s Dear Sir—which she recorded with Tim Foljahn (Two Dollar Guitar) and Steve Shelley (Sonic Youth)—she focused on her songcraft.

On the strength of her earliest efforts, Marshall was signed to Matador Records, a premier indie-rock label. Over the course of seven albums for Matador—from 1996’s What Would the Community Think to 2012’s Sunshe laid the groundwork for contemporary independent singers like Phoebe Bridgers and Angel Olsen.

With songs like “The Greatest,” “Good Woman,” and “American Flag,” Marshall has created a body of work that is both strong and fragile—music that, in contrast to much indie rock, draws frequently from blues, country, and gospel.

Marshall’s guitar work—on the acoustic or her customary Danelectro or Silvertone—has always been a study in understatement. On the electric, she plays chiming, reverb-drenched parts, with rolling arpeggios and the occasional off-kilter harmony that perfectly complement her soulful, whiskey-toned vocals.

She was once known for sometimes-erratic performances, owing to anxieties and struggles with substance abuse, but in recent years she has made some transformations. Marshall recently cut ties with Matador, due to mutual creative differences. In interviews, Marshall’s explained that when she presented her latest album to the label, an executive played her an Adele recording to demonstrate how he thought it should sound. That obviously did not go over well.

At the same time, Marshall has stepped into the role of single mother. Her toddler son appears on the cover of Wanderer, next to the neck of her Danelectro. Motherhood has put her in a protective and nurturing place, which is apparent in the album’s generally quiet and cozy vibewith guitar- and piano-based songs that are produced much more sparsely than those on Sun, with its shimmering electronic layers.

The record will be supported by an international tour, For many years Cat Power had a reputation for disappointing live performances and cancelling tours. However in recent years, her performances have become more consistent.

Chan Marshall last visited to perform her album Moon Pix in full. The one off show was in celebration of the album’s 20th anniversary. Moon Pixwas recorded in Melbourne and is often referred to as her breakthrough album.

‘Wanderer’ is the new album from Cat Power, released 5th October on Domino Record Co.

“Words I Heard” is a literary deep-dive into a world of sensory warmth that serves as a contrast to Julia Holter’s examination of what she called “the cacophony of the mind in a melting world.” The song’s orchestral accompaniment swirls like fog, a picturesque landscape for Holter to stroll through as she draws on sources from Dante to Lebanese-American poet Etel Adnan for lyrical inspiration.

“Tall trees of so many kinds, from redwoods to manzanitas, oaks, madrones, maples and elms, plants and bushes, flowers and seeds, acorns and grass, they all are the last chance of the earth and they all make a thick and permanent coat, a cover, a bath of perfume, a touch of healing, a royal procession, music and fanfare, they rise and talk to Tamalpais, and sing lullabies and songs of love.” – Etel Adnan, ‘Journey to Mount Tamalpais’ “When Julia told me that the title of her album was inspired by Etel Adnan, one of my favorite writers, I felt that I had to make a film for one of the songs on Mount Tamalpais, a recurring subject in both Adnan’s visual art and her writing. I filmed on a few hikes down the Dipsea trail, and in the last section of the song combine this with footage made during the studio sessions of the album.” – Dicky Bahto .

Directed by Dicky Bahto Devin Hoff – Double bass Julia Holter – Vocals, piano, synth Dina Maccabee – Violin, viola Andrew Tholl – Violin

Julia Holter – “Words I Heard” from ‘Aviary’, released 26th October 2018 on Domino Record Co.

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Normally I’d say you’re setting yourself up for a very public and humiliating defeat by trying to cover the ever popular Rihanna, but there’s nothing normal ever about Cat Power. Chan Marshall has the voice of an angel with a pack-a-day habit, so whatever she sings sounds like some sort of badass divine intervention. Her cover of Rhianna’s 2012 hit ‘Stay’ is the second single off her new album, “Wanderer”and it’s really something special. According to Chan, covering songs is a tradition that is “one of the highest compliments you can pay another artist. It’s one of the great traditions in American music and one of the true pleasures of music history.”

“Stay” features on ‘Wanderer’, the new album from Cat Power, out 5th October on Domino Record Co.

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I’m so happy to share news of my new record “Aviary”, due out October 26th.

I hope whoever listens will choose their own way to listen and find their own path with it, not necessarily start to finish or all at once. It’s all the winged things flying around in the head, the memories and the current thoughts, all at once. This is a record I feel so fortunate to have been able to make–a lot of it is built upon different improvisatory moments of cathartic music-making at a time where it’s hard to find the words to express oneself, indulging in sound, almost like therapeutic or something. And then working with old friends/collaborators Cole MGN and Kenny Gilmore to develop the sounds of these moments and record many more of them in the studio with great musician friends (Corey Fogel, Devin Hoff, Dina Maccabee, Sarah Belle Reid, Andrew Tholl, Tashi Wada). It was a wonderful journey. Thanks as well to my good friend Dicky Bahto for his beautiful artwork.

Thank you so much for listening

Julia Holter“I Shall Love 2” from ‘Aviary’, released 26th October 2018 on Domino Record Co.

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Last month, Chan Marshall, aka Cat Power, teased the release of her 10th album with 80 seconds of scenic views and husky, hymn-like vocals. The visual featured a snippet of the album’s title track: Wanderer, out this fall via Domino Recordings, The release will break the artist’s six-year hiatus following the release of Sun.

Marshall has now shared the first single from Wanderer: “Woman,” featuring supporting vocals from her former tour-mate Lana Del Rey. It’s a pulsing Americana track, with thick vocals from Marshall intermingling with Del Rey’s whispery tones. The track is bolstered by a solid guitar riff that reflects hazy late nights and Marshall’s southern roots. The singers repeat “woman” over and over until it becomes an icy affirmation against the backdrop of a vast landscape. “I’m a woman of my word / Now you have heard / My word’s the only thing I truly need”—a testament to feminine power.

The song also comes with a video directed by Greg Hunt. It’s a simple visual, switching between shots of Marshall and her band on a rooftop at sunset, and in a studio with deeply saturated blues and pinks.

Wanderer was written, recorded and produced by Marshall herself, and it reflects the themes of rootlessness that come with being a touring musician. The album comes out on October. 5th, but you can watch the video for “Woman” below.

“Woman (feat. Lana Del Rey)” features on ‘Wanderer’, the new album from Cat Power, out 5th October on Domino Record Co.

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