Posts Tagged ‘Songs Ohia’

Lionsesh

The Lioness is the first Jason Molina project to fully turn away from the battlefield folk and deconstructed Americana of earlier Songs: Ohia recordings. At the dawn of the 21st century, the album felt modern. It aligned Molina with a new set of peers – Low, Gastr del Sol, Red House Painters and, most importantly, the influential Scottish band Arab Strap, whose producer and members were crucial in the creation of The Lioness. The avant-garde tones and arrangements of Arab Strap are absorbed here into Molina’s songwriting to create what would become, for many acolytes, the archetypal Songs: Ohia sound. Love and Work: The Lioness Sessions, the box set reissue, will serve as the seminal log of the era, complete with lost songs, photos, drawings, and essays from those who knew Molina best.

We know Molina was diligent in both love and work. He treated songcraft like a job at the mill, and his approach to romance was not so different. We know that when he fell in love with his wife, he was dutiful in his adoration. There were strings of love letters and poetic gesture. Included in this edition are replicated examples of this relentless love – an envelope with a letter from Molina, a photograph of Molina and his to-be wife, a postcard, a Two of Hearts playing card, and a personal check for one million kisses. Some of these items were gifts he would send to his new love from the road; others, like the 2 of Hearts, were totems he’d carry with him around this time as a symbol for his burgeoning love.

And so, the head-over-heels album that is The Lioness has its workman counterpart. Nearly another album’s worth of material was recorded in Scotland during the album sessions. While similar in tone and structure, the songs seem to deal in the grit and dirt of being. These are songs for aching muscles getting soothed in the third-shift pub. But they’re also examples of Molina’s diligence as he constructs what would be the essential elements of The Lioness. In addition to these outtakes, we also have a 4-track session made weeks earlier in London with friend James Tugwell. Comprised of primarily guitar, hand drums and voice, these songs are raw experiments that mostly serve to illustrate Molina’s well of words and ideas. But then, there is the devastating Sacred Harp hymn Wondrous Love. While he may have had his new love in mind, one can’t help but think of Molina’s legacy as he softly warbles “Into eternity I will sing / Into eternity I will sing.” You don’t have to try too hard to mythologize Molina. He did all the work for you.

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lots of new releases and reissues out tomorrow as well, the major titles including  –

New Ed Harcourt album ‘Beyond The End’.
A limited Morrissey 7″ – ‘Back On The Chain Gang’
A very limited Type O Negative coloured vinyl reissue of ‘Bloody Kisses’.
Three more Bauhaus reissues – The Bela Session, ‘The Sky’s Gone Out’ and ‘Press Eject…’.
Vol.2 of the Marc Bolan ‘Home Demos’ is finally out after some delay.
A very lovely looking Chic box set. along with the vinyl version Boxed Set of the Tom Petty American Treasure

And in other news…….
King Gizzard & The Flying Wizard 
coloured vinyl reissues are flying out – have you got your copies yet?
Mumford & Sons 
latest album is also selling fast on coloured vinyl.
the excellent new album from Marianne Faithfull.
Post Malone – ‘Beerbongs and Bentleys’.   

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Songs: Ohia ‘Love & Work: The Lioness Sessions’ ltd vinyl box set

Songs: Ohia – ‘Love & Work: The Lioness Sessions’ limited translucent purple coloured double vinyl LP.

The release also includes a 16-page booklet with photos and meditations by Jason’s family and collaborators, as well as replications of ephemera from Jason’s guitar case & life from the time (a handwritten love letter, a postcard, a 2 of Hearts playing card, and more)

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Hippo Campus – Bambi

Hippo Campus release their second album, Bambi through Transgressive Records. On their sophomore album Bambi, the St. Paul, Minnesota-bred band navigate that upheaval with deliberate self-reflection. The result is a selection of songs that drift into much darker terrain, but unfold with a frenetic yet fragile beauty that makes even the most painful moments feel glorious. Partly recorded at Steve Albini’s Electrical Audio in Chicago, Bambi finds Hippo Campus working again with producer BJ Burton (Bon Iver, Low, Francis and the Lights), who handled production on their 2017 full-length debut Landmark. And in sculpting Bambi’s distinctly inventive arrangements, Hippo Campus significantly expanded their use of drum machines and synth. Throughout Bambi, Hippo Campus match their relentless self-examination with a joyfully adventurous sonic approach, ultimately transforming the emotional experience of the problems they’re exploring.

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Breeders ‘Safari EP’ ltd 12″ reissue

Being released this November as part of Record Store Day’s sister Black Friday event is a faithful repress of the 12” version of The Breeders’ Safari EP, complete with Shinro Ohtake’s 1983 charcoal drawing Nairobi VIII adorning its cover. Originally released in April 1992, sandwiched between their first two albums (Pod and Last Splash), The Breeders’ Safari EP came at a time when Kim’s Pixies commitments were winding down and her new band were on the cusp of releasing a platinum-selling album.

Their first record to feature Kim Deal’s twin Kelley, the EP was recorded in two studios with the bulk coming from a session in New York, which provided an early version of Do You Love Me Now?, Don’t Call Home and a cover of The Who’s So Sad About Us. The title track, Safari, was recorded separately in London by Kim, Josephine Wiggs and drummer Jon Mattock (Spacemen 3 / Spiritualized).

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Iggy & The Stooges – ‘Rare Power’

The untamed energy of Iggy and The Stooges comes to vinyl for Record Store Day Black Friday on Rare Power, a collection of rare tracks from the sessions that produced their landmark 1973 album Raw Power. Eight of these nine outtakes and alternate mixes are available on vinyl for the first time, and composer Josh Mobley’s remix of Gimme Danger (heard in the best selling video game Watch Dogs) is commercially available for the first time ever.

The Byrds – Sweetheart Of The Rodeo (4 X 12″ Vinyl LP)

By the time Sweetheart Of The Rodeo was released in 1968, The Byrds had already changed the sound of rock music twice; from jangling folk-rock to experimental acid-rock, they constantly sought to push the boundaries of what rock music could be. The 1967 departure of David Crosby left a creative void filled quickly by country music-loving Gram Parsons, whose addition led Roger McGuinn, Chris Hillman and company to record an album comprised mostly of authentic country material in Nashville, with the aid of local session aces (including future Byrd Clarence White). For the first time on vinyl—and on the heels of a 50th anniversary tour of the album by original members McGuinn and Hillman—this Legacy Edition of Sweetheart Of The Rodeo showcases this country-rock masterpiece alongside 28 bonus tracks, including demos, outtakes, rehearsal versions and tracks by Parsons’ pre-Byrds outfit, The International Submarine Band.

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Chris Robinson Brotherhood – Betty’s Midwestern Magic Blends

The Chris Robinson Brotherhood is indisputably one of the hardest working bands in rock ‘n’ roll. 2018 marks the fourth year in a row that they’ll play over 200 shows across the U.S. and Europe. Through that prolific touring schedule, the band has emerged a razor sharp, riveting live unit. Each evening The CRB plays two sets of music with a dynamic, ever-changing setlist. Presenting original material stretching across six studio albums, plus a repertoire of covers that runs from Slim Harpo to Bob Dylan and beyond, it’s only fittng that the band would document this output. They’ve done exactly that through a series of live recordings dubbed, ‘Betty’s Blends’ taking its moniker from legendary Grateful Dead archivist and recording engineer Betty Cantor-Jackson who is called upon to capture The CRB’s performances in multi-dimensional, audio-verite. ‘Betty’s Midwestern Magik Blends’ is the fourth volume from the acclaimed series, gathering highlights from three shows in Milwaukee, Madison and Chicago in October 2016. Available as a vinyl exclusive, 3-LP set with only 3500 copies released, the collection finds The CRB in peak form delivering highlights like “New Cannonball Rag,” “Forever As The Moon” and “Shadow Cosmos,” as well as adapting two from The Rolling Stones: “Down Home Girl” and “Let It Bleed” and the seldom played fan favorite, Steppenwolf’s “Magic Carpet Ride.”

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Violent Femmes – Permanent Record: The Very Best Of Violent Femmes

Permanent Record: The Very Best of Violent Femmes provides a comprehensive overview of The Violent Femmes historic recording career – beginning with tracks from their legendary debut up until their 2000 release, Freak Magnet. The compilation includes the original studio recordings for hit singles such as Blister In The Sun, American Music, Gone Daddy Gone, amongst others, and is a must have for both new listeners and devoted fans alike.

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Jeff Tweedy – Let’s Go (So We Can Get Back)

Through his pioneering work in the legendary country-punk band, Uncle Tupelo, to his enduring legacy as the creative force behind the unclassifiable sound of Wilco, Jeff Tweedy has weaved his way between the underground and the mainstream – and back again.

Funny, disarming, and deeply honest, his memoir casts light on his unique creative process and the stories that shaped his life and career, from a childhood spent in Illinois to the release of No Depression in the early 90s – which set the blueprint for alt-country – and later working with Mavis Staples and, posthumously, Woody Guthrie.

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The Go Betweens – Right Here

Grant McLennan and Robert Forster, the founding members of seminal Brisbane band The Go-Betweens had been close friends and collaborators since their late teens some thirty years before. As it unfolds, we discover how relationships – both creative and romantic – are continually tested, challenged, remoulded and, in some cases, destroyed. The film truthfully exposes all the highs, lows, joy, pain, sorrow and beauty of being in a cult band and of trying to survive the harsh, brutal realities of an at times exploitative music industry. Unflinching, insightful and at times painfully honest, the film tells the story of The Go-Betweens from the inside out, from the people who lived it and from those whose lives were transformed by it.

This Week
Art Brut – ‘WHAM! BANG! POW! LETS ROCK OUT!’ LP
Bauhaus – ‘The Bela Session’ LP reissue
Bauhaus – ‘Press Eject & Give Me The Tape’ ltd white vinyl LP reissue
Bauhaus – ‘The Sky’s Gone Out’ ltd violet vinyl LP reissue
Marc Bolan – ‘Tramp King Of The City: Home Demos Vol. 2’ LP
Bouquet Of Dead Crows – ‘Motus Octo’ splatter vinyl LP
Breeders – ‘Safari EP’ limited 12″ reissue
Mansur Brown – ‘Shiroi’ LP
Lindsey Buckingham – ‘Solo Anthology’ 6LP Box set
Calexico – ‘The Black Light’ ltd clear vinyl 2LP reissue
The Chic Organisation – ‘1977 – 1979’ 5LP + 12″ vinyl box set
Ry Cooder – ‘Mambo Sinuendo’ 2LP
Deep Purple – ‘In Rock’ purple vinyl LP reissue
Deep Purple – ‘Fireball’ purple vinyl LP reissue
Ed Harcourt
 – ‘Beyond The End’ LP
Hippo Campus – ‘Bambi’ ltd coloured vinyl LP
Hozier – ‘Nina Cried Power’ ltd 12″ EP
Durad Jones & The Indications – ‘Live Vol. 1’ blue vinyl LP
Laibach – ‘The Sound Of Music’ gold vinyl LP reissue
Levellers – ‘Levellers’ ltd orange vinyl 2LP reissue
Amy Macdonald – ‘Woman Of The World: 2007-2018’ 2LP
Morrissey – ‘Back On The Chain Gang’ limited 7″
OST – ‘Dredd’ ltd red vinyl LP
OST – ‘End Of Days’ 2LP

Tom Petty – ‘An American Treasure’ 6LP Box Set
Planet B – ‘Planet B’ coloured vinyl LP
Irmin Schmidt – ‘5 Klavierstucke’ LP reissue
Songs: Ohia – ‘Love & Work: The Lioness Sessions’ ltd coloured vinyl box set
Mikael Tariverdiev – ‘Sevnteen Moments Of Spring’ LP
Transmaniacon – ‘The Strange World Of Suzie Pellet’ limited colour vinyl LP

Type O Negative – ‘Bloody Kisses’ ltd silver vinyl 2LP
Vessel – ‘Queen Of Golden Dogs’ LP

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Evergreen is a new benefit compilation for Hour Children, an organisation that helps incarcerated and formerly incarcerated women and their children successfully rejoin the community with a view to building healthy, independent, and secure lives. You can pre-order it right now over on Bandcamp, both digitally and on cassette tape.

Released on July 10th, the compilation features  Hand Habits, Free Cake For Every Creature, Sitcom, and much more. Taken from said compilation,Fraternal Twin’s cover of Songs: Ohia’s “White Sulfur”, a tender reworking that sits in the nightly ether between both of the two artists’ work.

Inspired by one of its numerous, crushing passages, the kind of which Jason Molina so excelled at carving out of the paralysing emptiness (“It’s a very powerful, personal and actually pretty political lyric that seems to express something like a friend that lets you down in a big way“) Fraternal Twins’s take on the track is a dimly lit and beautifully fragile homage, Tom Christie’s wavering vocal drifting sullenly above the DIY-instrumentation that makes his own work such a compelling journey.

never forget it was triumph we once proposed
instead, you would trade our mission for mission words

White Sulfur is, since the first time I heard it years ago, one of my favorite songs,” Christie tells us about his choice to cover the track. “The guitar melody is just so bleak and Jason Molina’s voice resonates over the recording. It captures a very specific unnameable feeling for me…”

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Songs: Ohia - Magnolia Electric Co. @LP, Blue Swirl Vinyl, Limited to 600 Pieces, Out 12/16

Newbury Comics have been hoping to release some Jason Molina music ever since they started putting out records three years ago, so couldn’t be happier about announcing this Newbury Comics exclusive edition of Songs: Ohia’s ‘Magnolia Electric Co’. Released midway through his career (and preceding a band name change to Magnolia Electric Co.), this double lp deluxe edition sees the Songs: Ohia sound open up in ways that had been only hinted at on previous releases. The lyrics, as always, are worth the price of admission alone.

Our version is pressed on two slabs of Blue Swirl vinyl, in a lovely gatefold sleeve (with printed inner sleeves) in an edition of 600 pieces (+ download).

Out on 12/16 and available for order now.

Songs: Ohia ‘The Magnolia Electric Co.’ (10th Year Anniversary Edition) out now on Secretly Canadian, a fine year for reissues although none can be more welcome than this 10 Year Anniversary Edition of Magnolia Electric Co confusingly the last album by Songs: Ohia before Jason Molina took the name of this album for his new band. No surprises there, “Magnolia Electric Co” is Molina’s masterpiece and celebrating its decade long existence is right and proper. Molina died at the age of 39 as a result of chronic alcoholism. His music had a dark heart and a desolate core. He sung about it, lived it and possibly died of it. Often compared to Neil Young the music of Jason Molina went well beyond that of a mere copyist. He was a true original, always located on the fringes of success and a man whose recognition that he was “paralysed by emptiness” led him towards destruction that played out in “bad luck lullabies”. His music is Americana gold including classics like the uber powerful seven minutes of the epic “Farewell Transmission”, the quiet wonder of one of his greatest songs “Just be simple”, the power surge of “John Henry Split my Heart” and the wasted country beauty of “Hold on Magnolia”. The album was also unique in that Molina relinquished his vocal duties on two songs, the Merle Haggard-esque “The Old Black Hen” and the sauntering “Peoria Lunch Box Blues”, giving the lead vocals respectively to Lawrence Peters and Scout Niblett.

Beyond the core of the released album the 10th Anniversary Edition are extra rare tracks and a second disc consisting only of demos, which was originally released, in its first pressing. Taking the demo album first this truly does add weight to the originals. Firstly it has Molina doing his own versions of “Old Black Hen” and “Peoria” which are rough, ready and heartbreaking. There are also sterling versions of “Farewell Transmission”, an uber poignant “Hold on Magnolia”, a stripped back version of “I’ve been riding with the ghost” that this reviewer prefers to the original and two acoustic demos of the extra tracks “Whip Poor Will” and what must rank as one of Molina’s greatest songs “The Big Game is Every Night”. The former appeared in a polished version on 2009’s “Josephine” but both sweet versions here beg the question why Molina left them of “MEC”. The lines on “Whip Poor Will” still resonate not least “so all of you folks in heaven not too busy ringing the bell/some of us down here ain’t doing very well/ some of us with our windows open in the Southern Cross motel”. When it comes to the “The Big Game is Every Night” this was originally included on the Japanese pressing of the album. It picks up the whole gamut of Molina themes of the moon, NFL football (“Unitas to Berry – so good its scary”), blues, musicians and a hardy perennial – references to snakes. The acoustic version of the song is actually less harrowing than the electric version which stretches to 10 minutes. In it he finishes with the embittered (and self reflective) observation “Show an American if really I am the snake they’re all saying/If they look up here do they see just my black tail swaying?/If I’m all fangs and all lies and all poison/If I’m really what they’re saying/I don’t want to disappoint them”. Like “Blue Factory Flame” it is utterly engrossing and compelling. The raw power of the songs conclusion sees Molina reach the pinnacle of his recording career.

The passage of ten years and the passing of Jason Molina confirms that “Magnolia Electric Co” is every bit the equal of Neil Young’s “On the Beach”, Will Oldham’s “I See A Darkness” and Johnny Cash’s “American III Solitary Man”. Sadly we just didn’t know how great Jason Molina was.

 

 

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Today is the 13th year anniversary of the album by Songs Ohia ‘Didn’t It Rain’

Last night WXPN in Philadelphia aired the first of it’s Folkadelphia Unsung specials focusing on Jason Molina and Songs: Ohia, specifically ‘Didn’t It Rain’, which was recorded in Philadelphia in 2002.

Listen to the whole show here: http://bit.ly/xpn_songspecial_blog
Hear covers by local Philly artists: http://bit.ly/xpnfolk_sohspecial_covers
Hear the originals on Spotify: http://bit.ly/xpnfolk_songsoriginals

PLEASE Donate to MusiCares in honor of Jason Molina:www.grammy.org/musicares/donate

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Welcome to the first chapter of Folkadelphia’s new project that we’ve gotten in the habit of calling Unsung. In the history of music, there are many unsung artists and albums that we firmly clutch close to our hearts. These artists create the kind of music that we wish other people knew more about or cared more deeply for. We wish that we could share with others our exact feelings about how we’ve been touched and affected by some musicians. We want to show them the light. We want to sing these musicians’ unsung song for everyone to hear. With this series, we hope we can provide a way for people to connect with music that has been influential beyond its commercial impact and, perhaps, appeal. It’s never too late to find a new favourite band and honor their legacy and discography.

For this first part, we focused on what has become one of my favourite albums: Songs: Ohia’s Didn’t It Rain, which was recorded in Philadelphia in 2002. I never knew Jason Molina nor did I ever see him perform live while he was alive. I came to his music pretty late in the game too, just a handful of years ago during my college radio stint, but I always knew there was something special there. He could create these staggeringly beautiful portraits, often just with his words, his voice, and an acoustic guitar. He could also blow you out of the water with these epic guitar-heavy unabashed rock-and-roll tracks. But he always had a dark, brooding, introspective thematic quality I found appealing. I always pondered on the fact that while his lyrics felt so personal and tied to Molina himself, they were universal, they spoke to me, they spoke to others. I guess that’s just the hand of a master songwriter. He certainly was that and a lot more too.

During my years at college radio with my self-imposed solitude in the stacks and the listening room, I stumbled upon most of the Songs: Ohia and Magnolia Electric Co. catalouge. The album I was drawn to, but never felt like I could deal with or easily absorb was Didn’t It Rain. It felt like it was in its own little bubble, a perfect world that I was peering in at, perhaps as if through a glass darkly at the time. Secretly Canadian, Molina’s longtime record label, recently reissued the album with bonus tracks and demos, and it was just last year I finally revisited the record. Something must have clicked. Maybe it’s my age, my position in life, my mourning for the late songwriter, or it was just that time, but I fell for Didn’t It Rain‘s charm. It’s charm is that is without charm; the album is a bare bones affair, stripped of sleekness, studio magic, and flair. It was recorded live in a room in Philadelphia with a handful of people, some strangers to each other, and committed to tape with almost no overdubs or editing. This sounds a lot like some of the straight up folk records I admire from the early years of recording technology. Didn’t It Rain ends up being a snapshot in time, a near-perfect capture of creativity firing on all cylinders. You don’t always need walls of sound to impress, sometimes you just need a simple chord and a harmony, followed by silence to make an impact.

thanks so much to Folkadelphia for all of this article please check out their wonderful and informative site

Watch Glen Hansard and band’s live performance of Jason Molina / Songs Ohia “Hold On Magnolia.”
Glen’s tribute EP “It Was Triumph We Once Proposed … Songs Of Jason Molina” is out next Tuesday

“Hold On Magnolia” is the soul-decimating conclusion to Songs: Ohia’s Magnolia Electric Company,nd the late Jason Molina’s masterpiece of graceful desperation. It’s one of those songs that absolutely flattens you with sadness, an all-time classic in the storied history of weeping country-western laments. So I’m immensely satisfied that Glen Hansard chose to cover it on his upcoming tribute EP It Was Triumph We Once Proposed…Songs Of Jason Molina, and I’m even more satisfied that the Frames/Swell Sweason troubadour and his band do it justice in the live performance.

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Songs: Ohia is Jason Molina. His lyrics and unique vocals make the band.
That’s not to say the delicate, minimal music on this record is bad – far from it. The thoughtful strums on opener The Black Crow play as excellent build up to Molina’s first words on the record. This is perhaps the most epic track on the album with some of his best vocal work…the emotion in his voice during lyrics such as “a dead crow calls out to his wings, “we were lightning across the whole world” and “I’m getting weaker/I’m getting thin/I hate how obvious I have been” is beautiful. The next couple of tracks, The Tigress and Nervous Bride feel much less epic, but just as beautiful, continuing with Molina’s voice dancing over invokful guitarwork. Taken from the album “The Lioness”
Being In Love is one of the most beautiful songs I’ve ever had the privilege of hearing. As if his vocals, at their best, singing of bittersweet tragedy weren’t haunting enough, the use of an organ in this track makes it even more melancholic. This is the kind of song that could be on the soundtrack to many people’s lives. “Being in love means you are completely broken,” he sings hopelessly, making you die inside. The song continues on, with the organ aiding his crys. If lyrics like “We are proof that the heart is a risky fuel to burn” and “If you stick with me you can help me/I’m sure we’ll find new things to burn” don’t give you goosebumps then you have a heart of stone.
If any song on the album is given the job of following that aural delight then The Lioness is the best choice. Coming to life with hopeful melody that counters the depression in the previous track, this is perhaps the track you’re most likely to sing along to. The songwriting, is of course, on top form here,

 

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taken from the SONGS OHIA record store day box set collected singles and rare recordings gathered within are charming haunting and disparate moments over a six year course. A set of nine 7″ singles in a clothbound box with a 24 page booklet.