£25.99Abduction Records present the first vinyl LP release of Hound Dog Taylor's Hand.Visit product page →
The trio consists of Jeffery Taylor (Climax Golden Twins/AFCGT/Spider Trio) on electric guitar, Mark Ostrowski (Monktail/Wally Shoup Quartet) on drums and John Seman (Monktail/Ask The Ages) on contrabass.
The music is a heavy dose of jazz, blues, and improvisation. Sharp and destructive yet cerebral and clever, these tracks finally expose one of Seattle's best-kept secret treasures to the world as the only way you could have heard them, before would have been at one of their extremely rare live shows in the Puget Sound area or from their locally produced cassette from a few years back. The second track on side one titled "Beatrice", features Climax Golden Twins and Beatrice Harrison. Edition of 500.
"Hound Dog Taylor's Hand bring a highbrow brutalism and cranky chaos to jazz rock. [They] sound like Hound Dog Taylor's actual hand looks: scary and slightly off - Fans of Sonny Sharrock and Billy Cobham's Spectrum, take note." -- Dave Segal, The Stranger.
"A new trio from Seattle, led by the guitar work of Jeffery Taylor of Climax Golden Twins. The material is blues based instrumental improvisation over a jazzoid rhythm section. Something like a cross between Taste and Rangda, I guess. With all traces of Sri Chinmoy wiped clean." -- Byron Coley, Wire Magazine.
£25.99Robert Millis is known for many things - co-founder of Climax Golden Twins, Messenger Girl's Trio, and AFCGT; filmmaker and producer for the Sublime Frequencies label; co-producer of the Victrola Favorites book and cassette series. Now, thanks to The Lonesome High, he'll be known as a singer/songwriter.Visit product page →
After listening to his stunning debut album, you'll be wondering where the fuck this side of Millis has been lurking all along. He's been performing some of these tracks live for the past few years crafting them to where they are now - tilted perspectives lodged somewhere between the grittier climate zones of the the Rain Dogs (1985) plateau and a more psychotic trailer park way out on the Death Of A Lady's Man (1977) peninsula. Millis really delivers the goods here. The songwriting has depth, stinging clarity and vaporizing ambiguity.
The more upbeat tracks like "The Run Around", "Down In The Hold" and "Tricky" have an immediate classic familiarity - hear them once and you're hooked. But The Lonesome High becomes a monster statement thanks to "Marvelous Fool", "Charming Chisel", "Notes On A Scandal", and "Drowsy Sleeper". It's the stark cryptic beauty and detached awareness of these four ballads that define the heart and soul of this record.
So if you're looking for a contemporary troubadour who can actually deliver a solid 40 minutes of listening pleasure (not an easy task these days), you'll find it right here in spades.
Features percussion by Dave Abramson (Diminished Men/Master Musicians Of Bukkake), backing vocals by Alan Bishop (Alvarius B/Sun City Girls).
Front cover art by Jesse Paul Miller; Includes a download card.
£19.99Debut album and new project from Alvarius B. (former Sun City Girl, Alan Bishop) - Recorded in Cairo, featuring musicians Cherif El Masri, Aya Hemeda, and Sam Shalabi - Alvarius B. sings 11 new tracks presented through his dark lens of songwriting - Drenched in lovely psychedelic folk arrangements and vocal choruses.Visit product page →
The Invisible Hands is the English translation of the band's original Egyptian Arabic name: El Ayadi El Khafeyya. Taking almost two years to create amidst an unusual and challenging backdrop, this is the brand new project of Alvarius B. (Alan Bishop of Sun City Girls).
Eleven highly-crafted new songs projected through his typically dark lens of songwriting and a band of brilliant musicians from Cairo, the premier, self-titled CD version of this album is the English language vocals edition (see below) delivered in AB's patented sinister style; drenched in lovely psychedelic folk arrangements and vocal choruses with a nod to what could have potentially been an album that surfaced decades ago but instead found its way into the future superimposed over historic and tumultuous times in the center of the Arab world.
The group was established during the summer of 2011 and the album was recorded in Cairo in May of 2012. Band members include Cherif El Masri and Aya Hemeda (both former members of popular Egyptian group Eskenderella) with drummer Magued Nagati. On a handful of songs, several other players from the Cairo scene are featured including Sam Shalabi (Shalabi Effect/Land Of Kush) on oud and Mohamed Medhat on violin and viola.
£27.99Visit product page →In 2005, Sublime Frequencies released Choubi Choubi: Folk and Pop Sounds from Iraq, and in the ensuing years it has become one of the most beloved and venerable titles in their catalog.
Now almost 10 years later, this highly-anticipated second volume is finally here. Compiler and producer Mark Gergis has once again put forth a revelatory and poignant collection of Iraq's national folk music. What has happened to Iraq since the 2003 U.S. invasion and eventual occupation? Endless death, destruction and chaos, the complete take-down of a functional and sovereign secular government (regardless of your opinion on that government), puppet installations, contrived sectarian divisions, the wholesale looting of culture, rampant opportunism, and apparently no lessons learned -- all at the Iraqi people's expense. Naturally, music has continued to be produced in Iraq -- however, since 2003, musicians and artists have been consistently targeted and attacked by extremists, who have also bombed music shops and forced the closing of venues and music halls.
The musical style most prominently focused on in this volume is the infamous Iraqi choubi, (pronounced choe-bee), with its distinct driving rhythm that feature fiddles, double-reed instruments, bass, keyboards, and oud over its signature beat. Choubi is Iraq's version of the regionally popular dabke, another celebratory Levantine folkloric style of rhythm and line dance. What really defines the Iraqi choubi sound are the crisp, rapid-fire machine-gun style percussive rhythms set atop the main beat. To the uninitiated, they sound almost electronic. Sometimes they are, but more often this is the work of the khishba -- a unique hand-drum of nomadic origin (aka the zanbour -- Arabic for wasp), which appears across the board in many styles of Iraqi music today, with extensions of it also heard in Syrian and Kuwaiti music.
Among other styles featured in this volume are Iraq's legendary brand of mawal -- an ornamental vocal improvisation that sets the tone of a song, regardless of the style, and the outstanding Iraqi hecha, with its lumbering and determined rhythm pulsing beneath sad, antagonized vocals -- as heard on tracks A4 and B2. The tracks on this collection were produced during the Saddam era -- between the 1980s and early-2000s. An important goal within the Iraqi Baathist agenda was to promote its brand of secularism, which saw the establishment of cultural centers, and a fostering of the arts.
Music was more encouraged, albeit more institutionalized than ever -- particularly folkloric and heritage music such as choubi. In an Iraqi army comprised of seven divisions, Saddam referred to singers as the eighth. Still, unless a rare level of stardom has been achieved, being a singer or musician isn't usually encouraged or viewed as a respectable lifestyle in much of the Arab world.
It's often those deemed social outsiders that tend to find their niche in music -- particularly the "party music" heard on this collection. Among them are the Rom Gypsy Iraqis (known as Kawliya in Arabic). A number of female singers wear masks and adopt pseudonyms to protect their identities, as some are runaways or prostitutes making ends meet in the seedy nightclub scene. Occasionally, they end up with successful recording careers.
Side A:1. Sajida Obeid Hala Ya Nour Einy (Sweetheart, The Light Of My Eyes)2. Unknown Artist Ma Yefareqna El Zaman (Time Can't Come Between Us)3. Obeid Ensemble Instrumental Choubi Segment4. Akram Al Ramal Ya Makhtheen Al Welif (Oh, Those Who Take My Love)5. Salah Abdel Ghafour* Al Asmar (The Brunette)6. Iraqi Children's Song* Ya ZakariyyaSide B:1. Unknown Artist Khil Wa Khalileh (A Man And A Woman)2. Adiba Azezine Ya Makhthat Al Welif (Oh, Those Who Take My Love)3. Habib Al Drouly A'shka (Girl In Love)4. Sajida Obeid Mesafrah (Traveler)Side C:1. Sajida Obeid Mawal Introduction2. Souha Abdel Amir Kolli Ala Al Makshouf (Be Honest With Me)3. Salah Abdel Ghafour* Oyouna Shamiyat (Her Beautiful Eyes)4. Kathim Al Saher Helwa Ya 'Em Oyoun Al Soud (Pretty, With Black Eyes)Side D:1. Salah Abdel Ghafour* Yil'ab Choubi (Play Choubi On My Wounds)2. Sobeha Thiab Ataba And Choubi3. Ahmad Al Indibat* Bye, Bye, Bye4. Khodeir Hady Watad (The Stake)