Drag City Archive

Passage – February 2017 playlist

Passage“, our new playlist and digital collage, compiling new releases from January and February 2017.

Passage - February 2017 digital collage by GoodMorninCaptn

Passage - February 2017 digital collage by GoodMorninCaptn

Surprisingly, this edition tends to heavily eye California (Foxygen, Ty Segall, Xiu Xiu, Banana, Cherry Glazerr). Hope for a political counterweight? Or is it a mere longing for sun? The latter could be confirmed by the presence of a couple artists from Toulouse in the French South West (Aquaserge, Laure Briard) as well as PVT from Australia. To get us back to the seasonal grayness, let’s welcome a couple Mancunians (Jesca Hoop, Irma Vep), and of course a few brilliant Scandinavians (Rainbrother, Lowly, Linnea Olsson)…

Beyond this reductive geography, let’s notice the first solo adventures of singers breaking away from Ought (Tim Darcy) and The Antlers (Peter Silberman), souls to console (Jesca Hoop, Shannon Wright, Peter Silberman), retro nods (Laure Briard, Molly Burch, Tim Darcy, Foxygen), and joyful or hypnotic loops to fly away (Banana, Aquaserge, Rainbrother, Six Organs Of Admittance, Mind Over Mirrors, PVT, Avec le soleil sortant de sa bouche). Enjoy!

Featuring:

1 — Tim Darcy (Montreal, QC) — “Tall Glass of Water”, from Saturday Night on Jagjaguwar.
2 — Jesca Hoop (Manchester, UK) — “The Lost Sky”, from Memories Are Now on Sub Pop Records.
3 — Xiu Xiu (San Jose, CA, USA) — “Wondering”, from Forget on Polyvinyl Record Company (US) / Teenage Menopause Rds (FR) / Altin Village & Mine (DE) / La Tempesta (IT) / Upset the Rythm (UK, Australia).
4 — Dirty Projectors (Brooklyn, NY, USA) — “Keep Your Name”, from Dirty Projectors on Domino Recording Company.
5 — Foxygen (Westlake Village, CA, USA) — “America”, from Hang on Jagjaguwar.
6 — Banana (Los Angeles, CA, USA) — “Banana C”, from Live on Leaving Records.
7 — Aquaserge (Toulouse / Paris, FR) — “Tour du Monde”, from Laisse ça être on Almost Musique (FR) / Crammed Discs (rest of the world).
8 — Shannon Wright (Atlanta, GA, USA) — “The Thirst”, from Division on Vicious Circle.
9 — Linnea Olsson (SE) — “Weekend”, from For Show EP.
10 — Ty Segall (Los Angeles, CA, USA) — “Orange Color Queen”, from Ty Segall on Drag City Records.
11 — Rainbrother (Copenhagen, DK) — “Riverside”, from Tales From The Drought on General Bird.
12 — Six Organs of Admittance (Holyoke, MA, USA) — “Taken By Ascent”, from Burning The Threshold on Drag City Records.
13 — Mind Over Mirrors (Chicago, IL, USA) — “Restore & Slip”, from Undying Color on Paradise of Bachelors.
14 — PVT (Sydney, AUS & London, UK) — “Another Life”, from New Spirit on Felte / Create/Control.
15 — Avec le Soleil Sortant de sa Bouche (Montreal, QC) — “Alizé et Margaret D. Midi moins le quart. Sur la plage, un palmier ensanglanté II”, from Pas pire pop, I Love You So Much on Constellation Records.
16 — Lowly (Aarhus, DK) — “Mornings”, from Heba on Bella Union.
17 — Cherry Glazerr (Los Angeles, CA, USA) — “Told You I’d Be With The Guys”, from Apocalipstick on Secretly Canadian.
18 — Laure Briard (Toulouse, FR) — “On dit que je ne suis pas sage”, from Sorcellerie EP out on Midnight Special Records.
19 — Molly Burch (Austin, TX, US) — “Wrong For You”, from Please Be Mine on Captured Tracks.
20 — Peter Silberman (Brooklyn, NY, USA) — “Karuna”, from Impermanence on Anti Records / Transgressive.
21 — Irma Vep (Manchester, UK) — “A Woman’s Work is Never Done”, from No Handshake Blues on Faux Discx records.

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2010 – Top 9

GoodMorninCaptn - Top 2010 - Have One On Me, Retold, All Is Falling, Church With No Magic, Until The Point Of Hushed Support, Constellations, The Calcination Of Scout Niblett, All Delighted People EP, I See The SignAND HERE FINALLY COME OUR FAVORITE 9 RECORDS OF 2010… MANY OF WHICH ARE NICELY ORCHESTRATED, SOME PURELY INSTRUMENTAL AND A FEW OTHERS WITH NOTABLE VOICES; SOME GREAT ALBUMS TO FALL ASLEEP TO AND A FEW MORE ENERGIZING ONES TO FUEL OUR MORNINGS… HOPEFULLY YOU’LL LIKE THEM AS MUCH AS WE DO; HOPEFULLY WE WON’T REGRET ALL THE RECORDS WHICH WE HAD TO OMIT, OR FORGOT, OR HADN’T HAD THE CHANCE TO LISTEN TO IN TIME… HOPEFULLY 2011 WILL BE FILLED WITH JUST AS MUCH INSPIRING MUSIC. IN THE MEANTIME, DON’T HESITATE TO SHARE (here or there) WHAT YOU HAVE LISTENED TO OVER AND OVER IN 2010.

Sam Amidon - I See The SignSufjan Stevens - All Delighted People EPThe Calcination - Of Scout Niblett

9) SAM AMIDON – “I See The Sign” (Bedroom Community)

Sam marries ageless folk songs to the avant-garde arrangements of label mate Nico Muhly, unveiling unexpected beauty.

8) SUFJAN STEVENS – “All Delighted People EP” (Asthmatic Kitty)

2010 has delighted fans of Sufjan with no less than 2 great new records: the rambling The Age of Adz, and a so-called hour-long “EP”, slightly more focused, but just as grand and luxurious.

7) SCOUT NIBLETT – “The Calcination of Scout Niblett” (Drag City)

Raw rock-and-roll songs to burn your heart down.

Listen to title-track “The Calcination Of Scout Niblett“:

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Read our review of The Calcination of Scout Niblett.

Balmorhea -ConstellationsGreg Haines - Until The Point Of Hushed SupportPVT - Church With No Magic6) BALMORHEA – “Constellations” (Western Vinyl)

Balmorhea’s compositions got more subtle, welcoming doses of pleasurable silence, and we’ve enjoyed this gentle evolution a lot.

Listen to “Bowsprit“, from “Constellations“:

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5) GREG HAINES – “Until the Point of Hushed Support” (Sonic Pieces)

Strings, church organ, piano, percussions and electronics turn into black magic in the hands of the young and gifted English composer.

Marc’s Descent by Greg Haines

Listen to Until The Point Of Hushed Support on Spotify.

4) PVT – “Church With No Magic” (Warp)

Although the addition of vocals to the Australian trio’s formula may have puzzled a few early fans, it has instilled a touch of immediacy to their music which more than made up for the lost vowels in the band’s name. “Pivot – vowels + vocals = PVT” may have been a winning equation indeed.

PVT – “Window“, directed by Clemens Habicht

Listen to Church With No Magic on Spotify.

James Blackshaw - All Is FallingNest - RetoldJoanna Newsom - Have One On Me3) JAMES BLACKSHAW – “All is Falling” (Young God Records)

Inspired with his new 12-string electric guitar, James Blackshaw has built a more orchestrated suite, which spins and spins, and speaks and sticks to our inner self.

Listen to “Part 7 (edit)“, from “All Is Falling“:

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Listen to All Is Falling on Spotify.

2) NEST – “Retold” (Serein)

Bare landscapes; quiet and haunting.

Retold by Nest

Listen to Retold on Spotify.

Read our review here.

1) JOANNA NEWSOM – “Have One on Me” (Drag City)

With her fingers running across magic strings (and keys, occasionally), and her voice flying high over lengthy compositions, Joanna keeps seducing crowds (and stuffed animals) with a triple LP, which for many towered high above 2010.

Joanna’s magic shall be experienced through analogical means only (i.e. sorry, no official song or video available online).

Read and listen to our top #30 to #19, and top #18 to #10.

2010 – Top 30

GoodMorninCaptn's Top 2010 - Part 1

2011 HAS BARELY STARTED, AND… OH, SURPRISE! GOODMORNINCAPTN ISN’T QUITE DEAD YET. LET’S CELEBRATE AND HAVE A QUICK LOOK BACK AT WHAT EXCITED OUR EARS IN THE LAST YEAR, COMPLETE WITH LINKS, MP3s AND VIDEOS. SET YOUR EARPHONES AND FASTEN YOUR SEATBELTS, AS THE FIRST PART OF OUR TOP 30 RECORDS OF 2010 HAS US TRAVELLING BACK AND FORTH BETWEEN NORTH AMERICA AND NORTHERN EUROPE.

Silje Nes - OpticksThe Besnard Lakes - The Besnard Lakes Are the Roaring NightFaun Fables Light Of A Vaster Dark

30) SILJE NES – “Opticks” (FatCat Records)

Gentle lullabies from Norway -ideal to loosen up on your couch at night while petting your kitten (and writing your end-of-year top list)

Crystals by Silje Nes

> Listen to Opticks on Spotify or Deezer.

29) THE BESNARD LAKES – “The Besnard Lakes Are The Roaring Night” (Jagjaguwar)

Roaring shoegazing from Montreal to slowly awaken.


The Besnard Lakes – “Albatross” directed by Kara Blake

> Listen to The Besnard Lakes Are The Roaring Night on Spotify.

28) FAUN FABLES – “Light of a Vaster Dark” (Drag City)

Let’s now head down to sunny California and witness Dawn McCarthy’s possessed folk invocations.
Listen to a clip from “Housekeeper from “Light of a Vaster Dark“:

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Thee Silver Mt Zion Memorial Orchestra - Kollaps TradixionalesYeasayer - Odd BloodWill Stratton - New Vanguard Blues27) THEE SILVER MT. ZION MEMORIAL ORCHESTRA – “Kollaps Tradixionales” (Constellation)

With a slightly reduced line-up (now only one guitar, 2 violins, contrabass and drums), Silver Mt. Zion seem more focused and inspired on this racy imprint, their 6th full-length in 10 years.

I Built Myself A Metal Bird by Thee Silver Mt. Zion Memorial Orchestra

26) YEASAYER – “Odd Blood” (Secretly Canadian)

A pick whose presence in this selection has been highly debated. All tasteful considerations apart, the psychedelic back-to-the-eighties aesthetics of the album may be quite enjoyable and somehow much representative of 2010.


Yeasayer – “Madder Red” directed by Andreas Nilsson

> Listen to Odd Blood on Deezer or Spotify.

25) WILL STRATTON – “New Vanguard Blues” (self-released)

The young American singer-songwriter recorded and mixed his 3rd album over 48 hours before making it available through the Internet 2 weeks later, with a simple yet charming result.

> Listen to (and/or buy) New Vanguard Blues on Bandcamp or Spotify.

Nils Frahm & Anne Muller - 7fingersBenoit Pioulard - LastedOval - O24) NILS FRAHM & ANNE MÜLLER – “7fingers” (Hush Records)

After 2 much praised solo records, Berlin piano-wunderkind Nils Frahm joined forces with cellist Anne Müller for a post-classical record which in its best moments has us dream of Rachel’s classy compositions discretely but insidiously deconstructed by Oval’s digital experiments.
Listen to “Let My Key Be C (Thriller Edit)” from “7fingers“:

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> Listen to 7fingers on Deezer or Spotify.

23) BENOIT PIOULARD – “Lasted” (Kranky)

Thomas Meluch, better known as Benoit Pioulard, released his 3rd album for Kranky, filled as usual with ethereal, cloud-like layers of evanescent guitar, DIY rythms and lost voices.

Sault by Benoît Pioulard

> Listen to Lasted on Deezer.

22) OVAL – “O” (Thrill Jockey)

9 years after Ovalcommers, Markus Popp undoubtedly proves us that his heart clicks again.


Oval – “Ah!” directed by Darko Dragicevic

Deerhunter - Halcyon DigestUnder Byen - Alt Er TabtThe Morning Benders - Big Echo21) DEERHUNTER – “Halcyon Digest” (4AD)

Bradford Cox delighted us in the Fall of 2009 with his second solo record released under his Atlas Sound moniker, and once again did not disappoint us with the latest Deerhunter album.

Download Revival (MP3) from Halcyon Digest, or listen to the album on Deezer or Spotify.

20) UNDER BYEN – “Alt Er Tabt” (A:larm Music)

While their fellow Danes Efterklang got poppier and brighter on Magic Chairs, Under Byen persist in exploring dark and twistedly beautiful territories.
Listen to title track “Alt Er Tabt“:

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19) THE MORNING BENDERS – “Big Echo” (Rough Trade)

Co-produced by Grizzly Bear’s Chris Taylor, Big Echo, which has turned out a deserved break-through for its creators, is an uplifted and nicely orchestrated pop record, graced with the spontaneity of youth and a pleasantly retro sound.


The Morning Benders – “All Day Day Light ” directed by Jack Ferry

Listen to Big Echo on Deezer or Spotify.

Keep reading and listening to our top #18 to #10, and finally discover our favorite 9 records of 2010

Woman On Fire: “The Calcination Of Scout Niblett”

After almost ten years of career and four full-length albums, British-born singer-songwriter Emma Louise Niblett paired up with Steve Albini once again to record some of her darkest and most straightforward tracks, thus radically parting with the folk tag that caracterized her early works.

The Calcination Of Scout NiblettWith Scout Niblett’s newest album, pressing play feels much like stumbling upon PJ Harvey’s Rid Of Me and 4-Tracks Demos some 16 years ago. “Just Do It” slithers in like a slow and heavy wave of raw energy. Unrefined arrangements, unpolished voice, and heavily saturated guitar. No drums, like on most of the album, but hell this is rock’n'roll. The title track continues in the same direction. Greasy and rusty, bowels and lead, dust and saliva, this is the lady’s “self-made sweat box / This is where (she) takes it all off”. “Cherry Cheek Bomb”’s Hallelujah will make your hair stand on your head before providing the opus’ most advanced drum part. Grunge roots obviously, but a distinctive attitude, a grain that cannot be heard or felt anywhere else.

Listen to “The Calcination Of Scout Niblett”

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From “Kings”‘ throbbing rhythm to “Lucy Lucifer”’s mind-numbing linearity, from the disenchanted lyrics of “Ripe With Life”, to the deafening immensity of “Strip Pluto”, each track will cut you a little more from your civilized self and lay another layer of plastic wrap between your fishy eyes and the rest of the world. With its lo-blues feel and roaring guitar riffs, finale “Meet and Greet” is as heady and intoxicating as a dark nightly road movie. Think Lost Highway. Uncertain, deconstructed, and oppressive. “When you gonna learn to play that thing?” The answer is a shapeless guitar solo that ranges from soft indigo vibratos to flashes of purple sustained chaos. And then silence.

Introspective without being hermetic, direct without being exhibitionist, The Calcination Of Scout Niblett is as obsessive and addictive as it is disarmingly unelaborated. Nothing is forced out and nothing is changed, even though her previous releases may have sounded lighter, if not naiver. Howling and strumming with the heated and apathetic sweet-fuck-it-allness and looks of a rebel teen, Niblett simply delivers her strongest album so far.

Buy The Calcination Of Scout Niblett from Drag City.

Scout around for Scout on tour through Europe:

May 9, 2010 in Brussels (Botanique)
May 10, 2010 in Amsterdam (Bitterzote)
May 11, 2010 in Schorndorf (Manufaktur)
May 12, 2010 in Gent (Vooruit)
May 14, 2010 in Frankfurt (Yellowstage)
May 15, 2010 in Bremen (Spedition)
May 16, 2010 in Aachen (AZ)
May 17, 2010 in Cologne (Subway)
May 19, 2010 in Oslo (Cafe Mono)
May 20, 2010 in Stockholm (Hornstrull Strand)
May 21, 2010 in Malmo (Debaser)
May 22, 2010 in Berlin (Hebbel Am Ufer)
May 23, 2010 in Munich (59t01)
May 24, 2010 in Vienna (Arena)
May 26, 2010 in Lucerne (Suedpol)
May 28, 2010 in Barcelona (Primavera Sound Festival)
May 29, 2010 in Averio (Teatro Aveirense)
May 31, 2010 in London (Borderline)
Jun 1, 2010 in Glasgow (Stereo)
Jun 2, 2010 in Manchester (Ruby Lounge)
Jun 3, 2010 in Nottingham (Spanky Van Dykes)
Jun 4, 2010 in Bristol (The Fleece)
Jun 5, 2010 in Brighton (The Freebutt)
Jun 7, 2010 in Paris (Point Ephémère)
Jun 8, 2010 in Dijon (La Nef, cour intérieure)

Dec 3, 2010 at the ATP Nightmare Before Christmas curated by GODSPEED YOU! BLACK EMPEROR (feat. Neurosis, the Ex, Tim Hecker, Marissa Nadler…)