Mule Musiq announce their new label, Studio Mule. Midnight In Tokyo Vol. 1 is a compilation of Japanese disco, boogie, and soul music. The compilation starts off with the Afro disco classic “Mi Mi Africa” by harmonica player Nobuo Yagi. “Silver Spot” is a jazzy fusion disco track taken from composer, arranger, and multi-instrumentalist Nobuyuki Shimizu’s first album (1980), released when he was 19. The track features singer Epo. “Samba Night” is by vocalist Keisuke Yamamoto and his band Piper, from their masterpiece second album Summer Breeze (1983) — a delightful city pop number for fans of Tatsuro Yamashita. “Akogareno Sundown” is a Japanese soul classic, sung by singer Haruko Kuwana (sister of Masahiro Kuwana). Produced by Mackey Feary Band, known for the soulful classic “A Million Stars”. “Koiwa Saiko (I’m In Love)” is a mellow and groovy track by singer Aru Takamura, the great-grandchild of sculptor Kouun Takamura. It can be thought of as Japan’s answer to Cheryl Lynn’s “Got To Be Real”. “What The Magic Is To Try” is a cult electropop track by Honma Express, a project helmed by producer Kanji Honma. Hailed as Japan’s Trevor Horn, he is also known as the producer of legendary techno pop band TPO. “Colored Music” is a song by Colored Music, a duo of pianist Ichiko Hashimoto and her partner Atsuo Fujimoto. Taken from their sole album (1981), the Japanese rare groove treasure is a mesh of new wave, synth pop, and jazz influences. The dubby electronic new wave disco “Electric City” is a B side of pop idol group Shohjo-Tai & Red Bus St Project’s debut 12″ single. “Love Is The Competition” is a breezy disco jam by Okinawa-born bilingual artist Hitomi Tohyama, originally featured on her album Next Door (1983). Taken from Mariah project’s diva Yumi Murata’s first album (1979), “Krishna” is a funky and soulful rockin’ disco cut. Reminiscent of Chaka Khan’s “I Know You, I Live You”, “Live Hard, Live Free” is a song by jazz vocalist Eri Ohno who is known for her work with DJ Krush. “Rocket 88” is a melancholic disco number by singer Minnie originally released through Sapporo’s independent label Paradise Records. Closing out the 13-track compilation is Japanese disco staple “Tokyo Melody”, sung by Shoody and backed by Tetsuji Hayashi’s disco band the Eastern Gang. Compiled by Toshiya Kawasaki. Mastering by Kuniyuki Takahashi. Cover photo by Mika Kitamura.
Academy award nominated film and winner of the 2015 Cannes Film Festival Jury prize (among many others), ‘The Lobster’ is a dystopian comedy-drama directed by Yorgos Lanthimos (Dogstooth, The Killing Of A Sacred Deer) and co-written by Efthymis Filippou that stars Colin Farrell, Rachel Weisz and Olivia Colman. Love is a crazy thing that’s as perverse as the relationships that come with it, living in the digital age of love-matching and profiling, ‘The Lobster’ tackles humanity’s struggle with love, the fear of loneliness and societal issues. Forced by the government to find a partner in forty-five days under their watchful eye and extreme training program or you’ll be turned into an animal to survive in the woods. The absurdist sci-fi horror movie sees residents out hunting for ‘Loners’ who once caught are sent off to face their fate in return for extra time to find love that keeps them alive. Out in the woods alongside them are celibate freedom fighters that have joined the resistance, it is here a love story unfolds. Curated by Lanthimos and music supervisor Amy Ashworth, the soundtrack “brings the film’s edgy tension and menace to the fore” (Screen Daily) with orchestral renditions of Beethoven, Stravinsky and Shostakovich alongside Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds with Kylie Minogue on ‘Where The Wild Roses Grow’ and Sophia Loren with Tonis Maroudas on ‘Ti Ein Afto Pou To Lene Agapi’.
Years in the making – ‘Hillbillies In Hell’ (Volume Five) presents a further 18 timeless testaments of sinners, winners, troubles, tribulations, shallow graves and hot flames. An abandoned catacomb of subterranean 45s, some of these sides are impossibly rare and are reissued here for the very first time. All for your primal listening pleasure.
2017 repress. Mono No Aware is the first compilation to be released on PAN, collating unreleased ambient tracks from both new and existing PAN artists. Featuring Jeff Witscher, Helm, TCF, Yves Tumor, M.E.S.H., Pan Daijing, HVAD, Kareem Lotfy, ADR, Mya Gomez, Sky H1, James K, Oli XL, Bill Kouligas, Flora Yin-Wong, Malibu, and AYYA, the compilation moves through more traditional notions of what is called “ambient”, to incorporating wider variations that fall under the term. “Mono no aware”, “the pathos of things”, also translates as “an empathy toward things”, or “a sensitivity to ephemera”. A term for the awareness of impermanence, or the transience of things. A meditation on mortality and life’s transience, ephemerality heightens the appreciation of beauty and sensitivity to their passing. In investigating the passing of time, the boundaries between memory and hallucination become blurred; between fiction and reality. The movement of time transforms into an eternal present. James K’s “Stretch Deep” features Eve Essex.
This compilation presents 12 of the most memorable and sought-after songs of the era recorded by female artists. The music is a reflection of the unbridled optimism, technological achievement, excess and exuberance of Bubble-era Japan. More than catchy melodies and funky baselines, these are reflections of a time when Japan was the center, and future of the world.
The 1980s. Neo-liberal excess. Crumbling communism. Military juntas ruling with an iron fist. And of course, freaked out music. Contort Yourself are turning back the clock and returning to an unholy fount of inspiration with “80s Underground Cassette Culture Volume 1.” A buffet of beaten up and brutalized tracks are on offer from unknown outfits and respected experimenters. Across two LPs expect to find noise reductions, post punk bitterness, no wave grunts, distortion soaked strings and vocals lost in a hail of pain. A road map into the weird and wild world of DIY back alley artists who, armed with only a tape and an idea, gave the established music norms a sharp fist to the throat…Contort Yourself
Various Artists “Lysergic Saviours: A Psychedelic Prophecy! The Holy Grail Of Xian Acid Fuzz 1968-1974” (Particles)
Particles present a hallowed collection of psychedelic evangelists, hell-bent on summoning the Lord and armed with the latest fuzz pedals and hallucinogenic. Let us embrace the sound of the heavens with a toxic mix of wild garage punk and prayer recorded between 1968 and 1974. This pious platter delivers 13 lysergic sermons from the depths of revelations on this LP, plus a CD with six bonus tracks. Holy fuzz pedals, let us pray. Features: Our Generation, The New Folk, The New Dawn, The Search Party, Whispers Of Truth, Concrete Rubber Band, Mind Garage, Earthen Vessel, Out Of Darkness, Exkursions, The Sheep, and Azitis. Included CD feature six bonus tracks, featuring Mind Garage, Koinonia, Eden, The Accompany, The Search Party, and Agape. Speckled (gold, blue, purple) 180 gram LP (hand-numbered sleeve); Includes CD; Includes insert with comprehensive liner notes are rare color photographs. Professionally re-mastered original sound recordings.
Black Editions present the first ever vinyl edition of Tokyo Flashback, the legendary 1991 compilation that defined the Tokyo psychedelic movement and first brought it to the outside world. Tokyo Flashback is one of the most iconic compilations in the history of underground music. Originally released by Japan’s P.S.F. Records, Tokyo Flashback defined the breathtakingly unique and previously obscured musical movement that had been developing in Japan since the late 1970s. The compilation features some of the earliest released recordings by Keiji Haino, High Rise, Masaki Batoh’s Ghost, White Heaven, Fushitsusha, Kousokuya, and Marble Sheep. It captures the excitement and energy of a Tokyo awash in Technicolor and deep blacks; the music echoing krautrock, psychedelic freak-outs, garage, and no wave. At the same time it reveals astonishing, totally idiosyncratic expansions of rock music. In time, Tokyo Flashback expanded to a synonymous nine volume series that, over the following two decades, unveiled Japan’s ever evolving soundscapes to the rest of the world. Tokyo Flashback is a defining statement of late 20th century Japanese psychedelic music and an essential primer to the world of P.S.F. All tracks are exclusive, this edition features the first time translation of the original liner notes. Black Editions’ deluxe edition is entirely re-mastered and marks the first release of Tokyo Flashback outside of Japan and it’s first ever vinyl issue. Also features Verzerk. Newly created artwork and design expanding on the original by Rob Carmichael at SEEN Sudio; Housed in custom printed deluxe Stoughton gatefold jacket and slipcase, including full color printed inner sleeves and inserts with soft touch and spot UV gloss finishes; Remastered and cut by Pete Lyman at Infrasonic Sound; Pressed to high quality vinyl at RTI.
The hits just keep coming—for this fifth lysergic journey, Riding Easy assembles ten heavy slabs of obscure rock the likes of which have never been seen before… not in this form, anyhow. And as usual, the tracks from these impossibly rare records have all been fully cleared through the artists themselves. Great lengths were gone to in order to get the best possible master sources, the worst case scenario being an original 45.
The legendary Captain Foam kicks off this trip like an anvil to your skull with a rollicking stomper sounding like The Who with Matt Pike’s thunderous guitar tone. “No Reason” wasn’t easy to find, but lo and behold, the super sleuths located him and got his blessing to include the A-side of his sole single. Good luck finding an original copy of the record. It’s rarer than raw beef—and that’s just the tip of the iceberg. The other nine tracks continue the onslaught in typical Brown Acid form: George Brigman’s charmingly disjointed bedroom-fi production of “Blowin’ Smoke,” Finch’s way out of time and place grungeadelic anthem “Nothing In The Sun,” Cybernaut’s heavy prog, Fargo’s hallucinogenic BBQ-sauce soaked “Abaddon,” Mammoth’s fittingly beefy eponymous riff-monger, Flasher’s “Icky Bicky” boogie, Ohio-based screamers Lance, Zebra’s gritty rendition of “Helter Skelter” and finally, the mysterious and previously unheard Thor appears here exclusively and for the first time ever with their unknown 45 track “Lick It.” – LIMITED OPAQUE YELLOW VINYL
There was something in the air in the urban corners of late ‘60s Japan. Student protests and a rising youth culture gave way to the angura (short for “underground) movement that thrived on subverting traditions of the post-war years. Rejection of the Beatlemania-inspired Group Sounds and the squeaky clean College Folk movements led the rise of what came to be known in Japan as “New Music,” where authenticity mattered more than replicating the sounds of their idols.
Some of the most influential figures in Japanese pop music emerged from this vital period, yet very little of their work has ever been released or heard outside of Japan, until now. Light In The Attic is thrilled to present Even a Tree Can Shed Tears, the inaugural release in the label’s Japan Archival Series. This is the first-ever, fully licensed collection of essential Japanese folk and rock songs from the peak years of the angura movement to reach Western audiences.
In mid-to-late 1960s Tokyo, young musicians and college students were drawn to Shibuya’s Dogenzaka district for the jazz and rock kissas, or cafes, that dotted its winding hilly streets. Some of these spaces doubled as performance venues, providing a stage for local regulars like Hachimitsu Pie with their The Band-like ragged Americana, Tetsuo Saito with his spacey philosophical folk, and the influential Happy End, who successfully married the unique cadences of the Japanese language to the rhythms of the American West Coast. For many years Dogenzaka remained a center of the city’s “New Music” scene.
Meanwhile a different kind of music subculture was beginning to emerge in the Kansai region around Osaka, Kyoto, and Kobe. Far more political than their eastern counterparts, many of the Kansai-based “underground” artists began in the realm of protest folk music. They include Takashi Nishioka and his progressive folk collective Itsutsu No Akai Fuusen, the “Japanese Joni Mitchell” Sachiko Kanenobu, and The Dylan II, whose members ran The Dylan cafe in Osaka, which became a hub for the scene.
Even a Tree Can Shed Tears also includes the bluesy avant-garde stylings of Maki Asakawa, future Sadistic Mika Band founder Kazuhiko Kato with his fuzzy, progressive psychedelia, the beatnik acid folk of Masato Minami, and the intimate living room folk of Kenji Endo.
Nearly 50 years on, this “New Music” is born anew.
Milan Records and Nicolas Winding Refn are thrilled to release the amazing score to the cult Japanese animated feature AKIRA directed by Katsuhiro Ohtomo. This game changer in the world of animation is celebrating its 30 year anniversary! The Symphonic Suite features the original unremixed and complete versions of the music created by the group Geinoh Yamashirogumi under the supervision of mastermind Shouji Yamashiro. The director wanted Yamashiro to compose the music for AKIRA, and asked him to take total control over the content of the soundtrack. This album features the best recording and most accurate representation of the music to AKIRA.
Gerd Janson’s label is celebrating 15 years in operation by inviting Tony Humphries to compile and mix Running Back Mastermix. It will be available as a unmixed double-vinyl LP. The tracklist is made up of Running Back releases, including productions from artists like Mr. G, Redshape, Leon Vynehall and Todd Terje. The unmixed vinyl release also features Dixon’s edit of the “The Voice From Planet Love” by Precious System, which previously only appeared on a limited run 12-inch. Humphries is an essential figure in the development of New Jersey and New York dance music and is especially lauded for his residencies at Zanzibar and Ministry Of Sound and his radio mixes on KISS FM.
More Country Gospel diatribes and Hellfired Hillbilly laments originally waxed on microscopic labels and distributed in minuscule amounts. These troubled but largely forgotten Hayseed troubadours sing of damnation and infernal choices, tormented sinners, Devil trains, Luciferian trysts, evil dope schemes and fallow final dreams.
Years in the making – ‘Hillbillies In Hell’ (Volume Four) presents a further 16 timeless testaments of sin, tribulation, cold graves and warm temptations.
An unholy stash of subterranean 45s, some of these sides are impossibly rare and are reissued here for the very first time. All for your prurient listening pleasure.
This musical mausoleum of malformed freak funk and dreadful discothèque pop has been resurrected from the maligned cinematic subculture of Bombay’s bloodthirsty horror film industry and witnesses the cognoscenti of the Bollywood pop scene at their most creative, destructive, and experimentally effective. Bollywood Bloodbath features India’s finest composers, such as Bappi Lahiri, R. D. Burman, Sapan Jagmohan, and Laxmikant-Pyarelal, making the kind of radical risk-rock that would, under normal circumstances, have studio security escorting these overworked maestros off-set for a well-earned break or a relaxing exorcism.
“David Lynch’s lauded cult TV series Twin Peaks has returned in 2017, with a cast of beloved characters and some notable new additions. As with the original series the music used in the show is a beloved character in itself, lead by Angelo Badalamenti and a reprised version of the iconic Twin Peaks theme.
Rhino present ‘Twin Peaks (Music From the Limited Event Series)’, featuring music used in the returning show including music from Chromatics.”
Over the last five years and as many volumes of their Beach Diggin’ compilations, Guts and Mambo have explored the reefs of five continents, dredged the sea beds of countless seas and oceans, examined every single seashell with the aim of making sure that no vinyl pearl should escape their notice.
Tunisian reggae, Japanese disco, West Indian jazz-funk, the duo’s aesthetic dribbling skills would stop the savviest Brazilian football player dead in his tracks, and it was with this in mind that they proceeded to select their discoveries. With a marked preference for meditative free-diving rather than tour package scuba diving, and isolated spots rather than massively overdeveloped beachfronts.
For this latest instalment of their adventures, Guts and Mambo have organised another expedition around the world, to salute the spots where for the last five years they have uncovered rare specimens, saving some of them from total extinction, while shining a light on others that amply deserved it.
Though each Beach Diggin’ compilation can be listened to independently of the others, the five together now form a kind of navigational chart signalling with its green flags the places where, in Africa, Europe, Asia, America, and the South Pacific, they gambolled on sandy beaches, avoiding the well-trodden path, becoming more and more demanding with each passing year.
Beach diggin’ is a state of mind…
Welcome To Paradiso is an expansive retrospective of the Italian dream house sound co-compiled by label founder Young Marco.
At the tail end of the 1980s, a new take on deep house began to emerge from Italian studios. ‘Dream house’ drew inspiration from key U.S deep house records of the period – the spacey melodiousness of Larry Heard’s productions, and the rich jazziness of tracks originating in New Jersey in particular – but sounded distinctly different. Its’ ‘head-in-the-clouds’ feel – all rich chords, tactile basslines, fluid piano lines and starry electronics – made ‘dream house’ a uniquely Italian proposition.
First and foremost, the style echoed the wavy, glassy-eyed positivity of the period more than any other. While music in the UK and the low countries was getting faster and heavier, Italy’s ‘dream house’ producers continued to create music shot through with warmth and colourful musicality until 1993. While few ‘dream house’ records were made after then, its’ sounds and loose aesthetic influenced subsequent styles such as trance and progressive house.
During its’ peak, dream house – or, as it was tagged by leading Italian label DFC, ‘ambient house’ (echoing the similarly minded work of UK pioneers such as The Orb and The KLF) – could be heard blaring from club sound systems across Europe. The style’s popularity was fuelled, in part at least, by the runaway international success of “Sueno Latino”.
Welcome To Paradiso gathers together some of the finest examples of the style for the first time since the turn of the 90s. It includes a smattering of scene anthems – Key Tronics Ensemble’s peerless “Calypso of House”, Morenas’s “Sonnambulism”, the ambient mix of Last Rhythm’s Italo-house classic “Last Rhythm” – alongside a swathe of hard-to-find, in-demand and forgotten gems.
There are cuts from key players in the movement – the likes of Don Pablos Animals, Sasha (later to find fame with a strong of bouncy, piano-heavy Italo-house cuts), and Dreamatic – plus a string of lesser-known names whose contribution to the evolution of the sound should not be overlooked. Young Marco has also found space for Leo Anibaldi’s “Elements”, a rare deep house outing from a producer who later helped define the sound of Roman techno.
Menace II Society is the name of the official soundtrack for the movie of the same name. It was released May 26, 1993 by Jive. It peaked at number 1 on the Billboard Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums and at number 11 on the Billboard 200. Several songs heard both in the movie and in the closing credits, such as “Got to Give It Up” by Marvin Gaye, “Love and Happiness” by Al Green, “Dopeman” by N.W.A, “Ghetto Bird” by Ice Cube, “Computer Love” by Zapp, “For the Love of You” by The Isley Brothers”, “Honey Love”, “Slow Dance (Hey Mr. DJ)”, and Dedicated (all performed by R. Kelly), “Atomic Dog” by George Clinton, “Fly Away” by Hi-Five, “Only The Strong Survive” by Jerry Butler, and a remix to “Streiht Up Menace” by MC Eiht, were not included in the soundtrack album.
**LIMITED EDITION GREEN VINYL** Here is the second part of the long anticipated follow up to Psychemagik’s Magik Cyrkles and Magik Sunrise compilations, out on Leng Records. The UK duo, known for their beautiful production work, prolific remixing skills, obscenely vast record collections and transcendent mixtape journeys, have been heralded as a truly unique and positive presence across today’s music scenes. Magik Sunset Part Two is yet another fine selection of tracks mainly released in extremely small numbers, sometimes only on private presses and only reaching specific parts of the world. Many of the tracks offered little information when searching for the original artists, some were discovered living in remote parts of the US and some had changed their names making the search that bit harder. This long and difficult search took over a year but at the end of it there was more than enough music to make the album into a two-part finale.
**LIMITED EDITION RED VINYL** After more than a year in the making Leng has released the final chapter in Psychemagik’s ‘Magik’ series. Due to incredible responses from the artists we contacted we ended up with more tracks than we needed for one album so it was decided to release Magik Sunset in two parts. Both albums contain yet more of the long lost and obscure tracks that the previous compilations have presented.
Young Marco mines deep into the 90s era Italian house underground and strikes absolute gold… Part 1 of 2.. In spring of 2017 Safe Trip released Welcome To Paradiso, an expansive retrospective of the Italian dream house sound co-compiled by label founder Young Marco. At the tail end of the 1980s, a new take on deep house began to emerge from Italian studios. ‘Dream house’ drew inspiration from key U.S deep house records of the period – the spacey melodiousness of Larry Heard’s productions, and the rich jazziness of tracks originating in New Jersey in particular – but sounded distinctly different. Its’ ‘head-in-the-clouds’ feel – all rich chords, tactile basslines, fluid piano lines and starry electronics – made ‘dream house’ a uniquely Italian proposition.
Mondo in partnership with Lakeshore Records, are proud to present the soundtrack to Aziz Ansari’s critically acclaimed Netflix Original Series: Master Of None – Season Two. Aziz Ansari’s Netflix Original Series Master Of None has been critically acclaimed for various reasons, including its incredible use of music. The music of season one (which Pitchfork called “prolific and distinctive”) set the tone of Aziz’s character Dev, and his initial misadventures in New York. But season two’s narrative launch in Italy takes the soundtrack into equally distinct, if not more diverse musical directions.
Soul Jazz Records’ new Space, Energy and Light is a collection of music by early electronic and synthesizer pioneers (from the 1960s through the 1970s), mid-1970s proto-new age gurus and 1980s guerrilla D-I-Y cassette-era electronic artists, spanning in total over a near 30-year time frame. All of these artists used electronic advancements in music technology as a means of exploring not only space and the idea of the future, but also of looking inwards to the soul and of creating music in harmony with the natural world. From computer software and hardware experimentalists and sound pioneers such as Laurie Spiegel and Kevin Braheny, as well as Mother Mallard’s Portable Masterpiece Company – the first synthesizer ensemble created in collaboration with Robert Moog – through to the earliest musique concrète experimentation of Tod Dockstader, the album shows how technological advancements and creative artistic expression went hand in hand.
In the mid-1970s artists Steven Halpern and Iaxos were instrumental in creating proto-new age music, experimenting in both the healing properties of sound and its relationship with the natural world. These artists also pioneered a new self-contained and underground D-I-Y approach to music, creating their own record labels, forming new distribution networks (with albums sold in meditation centres, health food stores and ashrams) far away from the commercialism of the mainstream music industry. In the early 1980s after the revolution of punk, these D-I-Y attitudes and ideas appeared once more in the growth of the distinctly anti-commercial and underground cassette-only careers of artists such as Germany’s Stratis and Carl Matthews in Britain.
Explore Zambia’s liberation and its impact on the country’s rock revolution. The book, written by Eothen Alapatt and Leonard Koloko is the first investigation into the Zamrock scene, and is filled with original record artwork and rarely-seen photos of Zamrock’s best ensembles. LP comes with a download/wav files to the entire release. By the mid-1970s, the Southern African nation known as the Republic of Zambia had fallen on hard times. Though the country’s first president Kenneth Kaunda had thrown off the yoke of British colonialism, the new federation found itself under his self-imposed, autocratic rule. Conflict loomed on all sides of this landlocked nation. Kaunda protected Zambia from war, but his country descended into isolation and poverty. This is the environment in which the ’70s rock revolution that has come to be known as Zamrock flourished. Fuzz guitars were commonplace, as were driving rhythms as influenced by James Brown’s funk as Jimi Hendrix’s rock predominated. Musical themes, mainly sung in the country’s constitutional language, English, were often bleak. In present day Zambia, Zamrock markers were few. Only a small number of the original Zamrock godfathers that remained in the country survived through the late ’90s. AIDS decimated this country, and uncontrollable inflation forced the Zambian rockers that could afford to flee into something resembling exile. This was not a likely scene to survive – but it did. Welcome To Zamrock!, presented in two volumes, is an overview of its most beloved ensembles, and a trace of its arc from its ascension, to its fall, to its resurgence.