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Albums out Nov. 13: Crystal Castles, The Weeknd, Lust For Youth and More

Posted by Billy Gil, November 12, 2012 05:40pm | Post a Comment

Album Picks:

Crystal Castles III

Crystal Castles IIICD $12.98

LP $17.98

Early interviews about Crystal Castles' stunning third album have seen frontwoman Alice Glass discussing oppression at length with Bono-ish fervor — not something typically associated with an image-conscious electronic duo known more for its antagonistic records and brawling live shows than its politics. But Glass and synth stud Ethan Kath can have it both ways, as III is another visceral attack of a record from Crystal Castles that ups the meaning behind their furor, both explicitly and implied, without losing any of their hedonistic attitude. In fact, III, while lacking some of the shock value of the first two records, is Crystal Castles’ most consistent statement to date. Tracks like “Plague” and “Wrath of God” still pack walloping beats, but they are more of mood pieces than, say, something like II’s “Baptism,” full of moody, heaving passages that draw you in and keep you rapt across the record. III is also smartly paced, keeping some of its more crowd-pleasing moments for later in the record, whereas previous albums were front-loaded. The fourth song in, “Affection,” shares a chord-scheme with MGMT’s “Kids,” though its warped vocals sound like they’re echoing from an abyss — not exactly radio-friendly material. Glass quits whispering and unleashes her trademark echoed yelps on the spare “Pale Flesh,” sure to be a live favorite, while “Sad Eyes” charges forth with unabashed club glee and hard-hitting beatwork. The album’s final quarter features some of its most remarkable moments, full of seedy club bangers, while its last song, “Child I Will Hurt You,” is a typically gorgeous closer from the band, layering Goblin-style keyboards over Glass’ haunting vocals, which often sing of pain inflicted upon the vulnerable, echoing the statement of that album cover, calling to mind suffering and comfort in equal doses. That concept isn’t as overt as it could have been, but when it does come through, as when Glass sings “I’ll protect you from all the things I’ve seen” on “Kerosene,” Crystal Castles create the aural equivalent of gunfire and a helping hand.

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10 Black Friday Releases to Look For

Posted by Billy Gil, November 12, 2012 03:21pm | Post a Comment

As with Record Store Day, the list of exclusive releases this year for Black Friday (the day after Thanksgiving, typically the biggest shopping day of the year) is staggering. A list of the available titles is here. I’ve pulled out 10 releases that are particularly interesting — to me, and perhaps to you. Show up at Amoeba Nov. 23 for your chance to own any one of these.

 

Lee HazlewoodYou Turned My Head Around: Lee Hazlewood Industries 1967-1970 (11 x 7 box set)

Lee Hazlewood You Turned My Head AroundNamed after an awesome duet ’60s psych-folkie Lee Hazelwood did with singer/actress Ann-Margret, this set collects forgotten records issued on Hazelwood’s label, Lee Hazelwood Industries. The singer-songwriter was also a notable producer, perhaps most famously writing and producing Nancy Sinatra’s “These Boots Were Made For Walkin.’” The set includes 11 45s from such artists as Suzi Jane Hokom, Honey Ltd., Kitchen Cinq and Hazlewood himself. From psych to country-pop, the set offers a view of Lee as an aesthetic director of sorts, setting forth a cultish sound that would come to be oft mimicked and appreciated far greater in later years than during its initial run.

 

 

Captain BeefheartAbba Zabba; Plastic Factory; Upon The My-Oh-My

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Weekly Roundup: New Videos from Crown Plaza, So Many Wizards, IO Echo, Line & Circle

Posted by Billy Gil, November 8, 2012 02:02pm | Post a Comment

A whole batch of awesome videos from LA-based artists were released this week. Check ’em all out like it’s 1994 and you’re home watching MTV.

Nima So Many WizardsCrown Plaza – “Reactor” video; So Many Wizards’ “Lose Your Mind” video

The solo project of So Many Wizards’ Nima Kazerouni, Crown Plaza, is dreamier and lo-fier than his band’s indie power-pop. “Reactor” is lonely and lightly melancholic bedroom pop of the finest order, while the video calls to mind visiting your hometown and feeling like a stranger. Chem Waves Volume 1 is out now on tape on LA’s Vanity Projects, while So Many Wizards’ fine Warm Nothing was released earlier this year. That album’s “Lose Your Mind” video was also released this week. Crown Plaza play a free show at the Bootleg Theater Nov. 12. So Many Wizards will be all over LA this month and next, starting with a show at USC with the Allah-Las tonight; see all their dates here.

 

 

IO EchoIO Echo – “Berlin, It’s All a Mess” video

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Remastered Beatles Catalog Releasing on Vinyl Nov. 13

Posted by Billy Gil, November 7, 2012 04:40pm | Post a Comment

The BeatlesAll 14 albums by The Beatles will be released in remastered stereo on vinyl Tuesday, November 13, following their previous release on CD (remember Beatles Day 9/9/09?) and digitally.

The 12 original UK albums, plus Magical Mystery Tour and B-sides collection Past Masters Volumes One & Two, will be released on vinyl and will include such goodies as a reproduction of the White Album poster. Additionally, a limited-edition box set includes every album and a hardbound book by radio producer Kevin Howlett, with a chapter on each album’s creation and remastering, as well as photographs from across the band’s career.

These vinyl releases mark the first time that The Beatles’ first four albums will be available in stereo on vinyl in North America. Watch for the mono vinyl releases coming in 2013. Each record is available for $22.98, except for Past Masters, The White Album and the box set. Links to preorder each of the releases are below:

 

Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band

Beatles for Sale

With the Beatles

Abbey Road

Let it Be

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'Dual Form' Cassette Out; Golden Ticket May Be at Amoeba Hollywood

Posted by Billy Gil, November 7, 2012 10:11am | Post a Comment

Dual FormA little while ago, I blogged about a new release from Leaving Records and Stones Throw Records called Dual Form, a cassette-only compilation of Leaving Records artists to kick off Stones Throw serving as a distributor for Leaving Records. The cassette is on sale now at various LA record stores including Amoeba Hollywood, and a few lucky buyers of the Dual Form cassette will get a golden ticket for an exclusive Leaving Records mixtape! The LA labels are throwing an all-cassette DJ night tonight to celebrate the release at The Virgil (4519 Santa Monica Blvd.), hosted by Leaving Records co-founder Matthewdavid and Dublab's Frosty. If you get the golden ticket, you can redeem it there. It starts at 9 p.m. and is free, though it's part of Dublab's Proton Drive, so donations are welcome. The event will be streamed live at Dublab.com.

Read more about Dual Form here, which includes The Cyclist's "Visions."

 

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