Sonic Youth, Boris & more artists with new Bandcamp special releases out today
It's another Bandcamp Friday, which means Bandcamp will be waiving their cut of sales for 24 hours (midnight to midnight Pacific) and giving all profits directly to artists and labels. Like the previous Bandcamp days, a handful of artists released stuff today -- like Sonic Youth (who have been putting out a lot of archival material lately) and Boris (who just added several archival releases) -- and of course you can still purchase many of the special releases from previous Bandcamp days, as well as plenty of new albums or old albums you never got around to buying. It's a great way to help support artists during these tour-less times.
Here are some of the special releases out today...
Sonic Youth - Live in Denver 1986
Sonic Youth were a force on stage, and though we may never see them perform together again, any live recording of theirs is worth hearing. Here's one from the Evol tour. Brian Turner penned the Bandcamp description and he writes in part, "Seems like a lot of those tour setlists understandably hit heavy on Evol tracks, even the previous year's Bad Moon Rising tunes took a backseat ("Death Valley '69" reportedly only played once this whole tour). But the Denver kids at the Turnverein (German Castle?) got the band midtour in ferocious form though with only five new tunes, six if you count the later-released "White Kross". The mix on this is perfectly hot-board, guitars skull-split left and right, drums sounding amazing, the whole band almost blurry and slo-mo at times. Very much woozin it up through an especially-psychedelic middle stretch of "Death To Our Friends"/"I Love Her All the Time"/"Flower"/"Green Light" that must have melted stoner kids' brains."
Sonic Youth - World Trade Center Benefit 2001
This was recorded at Bowery Ballroom shortly after 9/11. From Lee Ranaldo: "Thurston Kim and I all lived downtown, and our studio on Murray Street was downtown. In fact pieces of one of the engines landed on the roof of our studio building, that's how close we were. The events of 9/11 were traumatic for so many, and too close for comfort for some of us. Many people were doing heroic work around the clock in the aftermath. This benefit show at The Bowery Ballroom was literally put together in a weeks time, shortly after we regained access to the studio and our gear. The show was in benefit for Central American workers killed in World Trade Center attacks and featured the following performers, in addition to SY: Tom Verlaine band, Paul Flaherty/Chris Corsano duo, Eileen Myles-Kim-Jim-DJ Olive quartet, Cat Power and a set by DJ Olive. Five new songs that we'd been working on - that later appeared on the Murray Street album - were debuted at this show in nascent forms."
Sonic Youth - Rarities 1
"The first in a series of rare recordings selected from various out-of-print and hard-to-find compilations. This collection begins in 1982 at The Kitchen in NYC (with James Sclavunos on drums), journeys through the 80's and 90's and ends in 2009 at Bad Bonn Festival in Switzerland."
Sonic Youth - Spinhead Sessions
To quote the Bandcamp description, "The slow-burn sounds of Sonic Youth’s 1986 rehearsals to score Ken Friedman’s spooky highway film Made In USA are yet another mile marker in the band’s long and varied existence, now being issued as Spinhead Sessions (named for the North Hollywood studio used by SST label acts like Black Flag and Painted Willie). These jams were later built upon for a full-on (and quite different) soundtrack production, but the rough sketches here find the band taking time with truly new and introspective sound worlds. It was basically a brand new way of working for Sonic Youth, albeit a challenging one, under the auspices of major Hollywood film production overlords, routing their way into the world of soundtrack scoring. And it all comes at a key time and place."
Lee Ranaldo - Ambient Loop For Vancouver
Lee writes, "These recordings were created utilizing sessions in 2003 with Alan Licht, Christian Marclay and William Hooker, and initially conceived as backing tracks for a live performance by myself and Leah Singer in Vancouver, BC. Four short excerpts were released in 2004 as a 7” on Important Records; each of the 500 copies came with a numbered and signed fine art print as the cover. The following year the full-length piece was released as an exclusive CD which was packaged with select copies of the 10th Anniversary edition of my first book, Road Movies, from Soft Skull Press. In 2015 Important Records released a limited edition of this full piece as a special digi-pak CD. Playing on 'repeat' is encouraged."
Carlos Giffoni / Lee Ranaldo / Jim O'Rourke - North Six: Giffoni/Ranaldo/O'Rourke
The description reads, "Originally released as a 3" CD in a series by label Antiopic in June 2004, this documents a first meeting of Carlos Giffoni (computer, synth, gutiar)), Lee Ranaldo (guitar, fire bell), and Jim O'Rourke (synth). The gig took place at North Six in Williamsburg, Brooklyn on August 31, 2003."
Boris - Volume Zero "Early Demo"
"9 songs selected and compiled from 3 independently produced demo tapes, from the early period of Boris’s formation.
The final 10th track, “Soul Search You Sleep”, was recorded in 1996 during Boris’s first tour of the US west coast, and has been brought out of a long slumber to complete Volume Zero."
Boris - Volume One "Live 96-98"
"Originally released in 2005 from the US label “aRCHIVE”, limited to 600 copies which sold out immediately. Compiled from live recordings during Boris’s “Power Violence” period 1996 - 1998, including songs from the 1998 studio album “Amplifier Worship” and Archive Volume Zero “Early Demo”."
Boris - Volume Two "Drumless Shows"
"Originally released in 2005 from the US label “aRCHIVE”, limited to 600 copies which sold out immediately. Includes 2 songs recorded live from Boris’s 1998 studio album “Amplifier Worship” and 1 song from “Early Demo”, all arranged for a drumless performance. The beginning of Drone Metal history in 1997."
Boris - Volume Three "2 Long Songs"
"Originally released in 2005 from the US label “aRCHIVE”, limited to 600 copies which sold out immediately. A precious live recording from their early days, of Boris’s 1996 debut single song release, “Absolutego”, and “flood”, released in 2000, performed live together as “1 song, 1 production”."
Boris - Volume Four "Evil Stack Live"
"Full set live recording that was broadcast on Japanese government-owned radio. The setlist is compiled from songs representative of their “Uppercase BORIS” distinction, including tracks from “Heavy Rocks” (2002) and “Akuma no Uta” (2003)."
Boris - Volume Five "Pink Days"
"Recorded live in New York during Boris’s 2006 US tour. Selections from “dronevil” "mabuta no ura" and “Akuma no Uta” combined with songs from “PINK”, during the period of its release that transmits wild enthusiasm; the songs in this full set recording could even be called their greatest hits."
Jason Isbell and the 400 Unit - Live at Red Rocks - Morrison, CO - 9/7/17
One of the best things to come out of this weird year is all the Jason Isbell live albums, and here's another one. This one's from the iconic Red Rocks amphitheatre, and as usual, you get to stream one song for free ("Anxiety"), and you have to purchase it to hear the other 18.
Robyn Hitchcock - The Man Downstairs: Demos & Rarities
"These songs were mostly recorded in 2013 as demos for The Man Upstairs" says Robyn. "These tracks were recorded in Cardiff by Charlie Francis in his attic, and in many cases didn’t survive being re-cut with Joe Boyd in London when it came to session time." It includes previously unreleased versions of Nick Drake's "River Man," Pink Floyd's "Arnold Layne," and Hitchcock's "I Pray When I'm Drunk," plus demos for "All Love And No Peace" and "Cavendish Square" and more.
Engine Kid - Astronaut (reissue)
Seattle post-hardcore/noise rock vets Engine Kid reissued 1993's Astronaut, remastered in 2020 by Brad Boatright, on Engine Kid member Greg Anderson's (also of Sunn O))), Goatsnake, and more) label Southern Lord.
Marissa Nadler - unearthed: 2
Marissa writes, "This is an album of demos that I hope that you enjoy! I personally love the lo-fi and intimate experience."
Bonny Light Horseman - Green/Green
Bonny Light Horseman recently released the great non-album single "Green Rocky Road," and today its b-side "Greenland Fishery" is out too.
Lingua Ignota - "Wicked Game" (Chris Isaak Cover)
You're probably tired of hearing "Wicked Game" covers, but this one is like no other.
Edsel - A Lost Language EP
DC post-hardcore vets Edsel (who had releases on Dischord, DeSoto, Jade Tree, Grass and others) put out a "lost" EP from 2001, and you can read much more about it here.
Emma Ruth Rundle - "Dead Set Eyes" (Demo)
Emma Ruth Rundle has shared a demo version of this track from her 2018 album On Dark Horses for this Bandcamp Friday. "These bandcamp days are really helping to keep us going," she writes. "Many artists, myself included, were not able to get the unemployment promised to gig workers - so it’s things like this, support from Sargent House and y’all that mean the world. Stay safe and thanks again."
Oixisha (Toby Driver) - "Neverflash Safary"
Kayo Dot's Toby Driver writes, "Happy Bandcamp Friday! Along with a bunch of t-shirts leftover from the March COVID tour, I wanted to direct your attention to a brand new track, "Neverflesh Safary," by my Producer-oriented solo project, OIXISHA. I thought you folks might be interested in this because it features Greg Massi (our old guitarist from the first few years) and David Bodie (our drummer from Coyote) and this song has a bit of an early-Kayo Dot vibe anyway. Head on over to the bc, pick up a shirt (longsleeve season is approching!), check out the new OIXISHA track, and follow me on the socials if you dare..."
Christian Lee Hutson - Covers of blink-182, Sum 41 & Kid Cudi
Phoebe Bridgers collaborator Christian Lee Huston has released stripped-down folk covers of Sum 41's "Fat Lip," Kid Cudi's "Pursuit of Happiness," and blink-182's "Going Away to College." It's a little silly, but, idk, the blink song kinda works like this! Proceeds benefit the Downtown Women's Center, "the only organization in Los Angeles focused exclusively on serving and empowering women experiencing homelessness and formerly homeless women."
It's Never Over Til It's Done - A blink-182 Covers Comp
Joyce Manor, Rozwell Kid, Adult Mom, Spirit Night, Lisa Prank, Retirement Party, and others released a tribute to blink-182's Dude Ranch, which you can read more about here.
Best Coast - "Boyfriend" (10th Anniversary Version)
Best Coast reimagined "Boyfriend" for its tenth anniversary, and proceeds are going to The Trevor Project.
Mutoid Man - "Bandages" (Demo)
This demo version of "Bandages," recorded at Saint Vitus in Brooklyn in 2016, is streaming today only.
Cave In - Live at Club Soda
Mutoid Man's Stephen Brodsky also released a new live album with his band Cave In, recorded in Montreal in 2010. Making this doubly exciting is that it's also a newly-released recording that features the late Caleb Scofield (RIP).
Krallice - Mass Cathexis
Not only did Neurosis' Steve Von Till release a great new album today, Neurosis' Dave Edwardson teamed back up with his past collaborators Krallice on their new album, Mass Cathexis, which is yet another killer offering of experimental black metal.
MSW - Obliviosus
Krallice's Gilead Media labelmate M.S.W. (aka Hell) also has a very cool new album that recently came out on Bandcamp, Obliviosus. It's a thrilling, experimental blend of black metal and doom with guest clean vocals by Karli Mcnutt with Jess Carroll that add yet another dimension to M.S.W.'s sound.
Mass Observation - S/t EP
Mass Observation is a new project from Hewson Chen of Lake Ruth and The New Lines, and Davis White who led DC shoegaze/postrock band Lorelei (and also was in The New Lines). Hewson and Davis describe it as a "remote collaboration" and describe it loosely as post-punk, but "with a slightly different character" than their other bands. There's a dreampop element, with roots in the Velvet Underground and nods to baroque psych and other '60s touchstones, yet these songs are painted with a distinct widescreen canvas. And a lot of talent.
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Browse the Bandcamp tag for more.