Posts Tagged ‘Howe Gelb’

Newly remastered double LP beautifully repackaged gatefold sleeve with new artwork and expanded liner notes. Second disc includes the Mad Dog Studio sessions from 1991

A firm fan favourite, Giant Sand’s essential 1991 album ‘Ramp’ was the second of three revered albums the band released in the early 90s. Now set for a remastered special indie store exclusive, the new edition released on 17th July comes beautifully repackaged in a gatefold sleeve with new artwork and expanded liner notes from MOJO’s Dave Henderson.

‘Ramp’ is a magical trip with a host of guests including Victoria Williams, Rainer and Pappy Allen. Featuring piano lounge music for an off-world colony interrupted by an onslaught of guitar when needed. Reverb on, fuzz friendly. Up to 11, it’s light and dark and the better for it, a musical journey on a road less travelled. All sounds are welcome; banjo, dobro, pedal steel, plaintive harmonica, whistling all wrap themselves around the flow of consciousness; those truly memorable words. With Gelb’s lyrical invention to the fore: “His thoughts unfold in long, rolling sentences that don’t always follow conventional rules of grammar or syntax.” (The Quietus).

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The Tucson sound at it’s very best.

Releases July 17th, 2020

No photo description available.

If you’re not sold based on album title alone allow us a moment to convince you of the genius of Howe Gelb’s latest. And indeed his work to date. Never a dull moment, in this lifetime he has flirted with flamenco, adventured into Americana and gone for it with gospel choirs. The result is a back catalogue packed with great ideas, and inspiration for more great ideas. Enter Giant Sand, where artist dons disguise and revisits his old classics to make them fresh and different. Here Gelb, or Giant Sand, takes on the second Gelb album, “The Ballad Of Thin Line Man”. First released in 1986, when New Hollywood was kicking Reaganite attitudes to the curb in favour of modern high plains drifters influenced by the preceding LSD decades, that same ethic is here, only louder and more urgent. A strange but familiar and abstract Americana, with roughness turned up to 11.

it’s a re recording of a 1986 album that never saw the light of day in USA distribution. here now entitled “Recounting the Ballads ( of Thin Line Men) “ with original drummer(s) Tommy Larkins for a most of it and Winston A Watson Jr. for a minute too. ( just the opposite of their involvement of the previous re recording on last year’s re do of “Returns to Valley of Rain”. This album also features good ol’ Thøger Tetens Lund on low frequency ( as he has provided for the last 15 years ) and Annie Dolan for a minute too. Plus special visitation by Paula Jean Brown. The album was co produced by Gabriel Sullivan and the beautiful cover is by Rosson Crow.

We will be touring on it in Europe ‘tween Nov. 9th – Dec. 8th. .. a kind of fare-thee-well escapade. hind sight being 2020, am looking forward to something else next year. Thank you all so severely mucho. – howe

In early 2016, Howe Gelb announced that, three decades after the release of Giant Sand’s first album, he decided the time had come to retire his long-running alt-country band, issuing a statement in which he declared, “30 years seems an adequate number to aptly utter ‘I kinda quit.'” Apparently, that qualifying “kinda” was included for a good reason, and in the fall of 2018, Gelb revealed he had put together a new lineup of Giant Sand and was returning to duty.

But where to start over? From the beginning, obviously, and the first album from Gelb’s new incarnation of the group, Returns to Valley of Rain, finds him re-recording the 11 tunes from Giant Sand’s 1985 debut, Valley of Rain. Exactly why Gelb would make a fresh start by revisiting a handful of songs he cut in the mid-’80s is hard to fathom, especially since he and his bandmates attack these songs in a manner that’s noticeably different than the original recordings but not so much that it qualifies as reinvention.

If the production on Valley of Rain marks it as a product of the era of too much digital reverb, Returns boasts a cleaner and more direct sound, and the vague jangle of the 1985 recordings is replaced by a harder, buzzier guitar attack; remarkably, Giant Sand sound more like a rough-and-tumble garage band in 2018 than they did the first time they cut these tunes. The guitar attack of Gelb, Gabriel Sullivan, and Annie Dolan is scrappy but full-bodied, and drummer Winston Watson and bassistsThøger T. Lund and Scott Garber hit hard enough without overpowering the natural dynamics of the performances. And there’s a welcome spontaneity to the sessions that flatters the dusty introspection of Gelb’s lyrics and the determined drift of the melodies. Figuring out the why of Returns to Valley of Rain is probably fruitless, but if Gelb wants to move forward into the past with Giant Sand, at least he’s doing so with style and swagger.

GIANT SAND 2

The Sun Is Setting On Giant Sand… as the band announce their final year of touring , plus Fire America set to release ‘The Sun Set’ Box Set Vol 1,2,3.

After this upcoming European tour in April, Giant Sand shall bid a final adios. No more albums. No more tours. The occasional festival ? Could be. Maybe.

Howe suggests that these last 2 years of touring felt like the best runs ever. Regardless if his memory has misspoken, he maintains the band is not breaking up cause there’s nothing broken. It’s just being put to bed, maybe one day to be awoken.

Good night little giant. .. good night. ..
mr. sand man .. bring me a dream. ..

As a parting farewell gift, Fire America will release a dreamy three volume box set of vinyl entitled; “The Sun Set”.

The complete A-Z of Giant Sand will be released alphabetically rather than chronologically, highlighting the careening career and wandering muse of Howe Gelb and his assembled sun blasted slingers.

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