It’s Curtis Harding New Vinyl Thursday at The Vinyl Underground at 7th Heaven. Check out this week’s list of new vinyl arrivals:
Andrew Gabbard – Homemade (Camo Green Colored Vinyl, Indie Exclusive)
Bardo Pond – Amanita (Gatefold LP Jacket, Purple Colored Vinyl, Purple)
Bill Frisell – Valentine
Bill Withers – Live at Carnegie Hall (180 Gram Vinyl)
Billy Idol – Happy Holidays (White Colored Vinyl, Indie Exclusive)
Bush – Razorblade Suitcase (in Addition) (Colored Vinyl, Pink)
Bulbous Creation- You Won’t Remember Dying
Billy Strings – Home
Bob Marley- Best of Bob Marley
The Beatles – Revolver
Curtis Harding – If Words Were Flowers
Cat Stevens- Teaser And The Firecat
Courtney Barnett – Things Take Time Take Time (Gatefold LP Jacket, Blue Colored Vinyl)
Christone “Kingfish” Ingram- 662 (Purple Colored Vinyl)
Can – Live In Brighton 1975 (Limited Edition, Colored Vinyl, Gold)
Cody Jinks – Mercy (Blue, Black, Clear Vinyl)
Czarface & MF DOOM – Czarface Meets Metalface
underground rapper and producer MF Doom. Now Czarface have reissued Czarface Meets Metal Face,
their first partnership with MF Doom.
Both Czarface and MF Doom base their aesthetic around comic books, 1970s cartoons, inside jokes and
obscure pop-culture references. What seems like a perfect match on paper works even better on the
2018 album. With old-school production from 7L, Doom, Wu-Tang Clan member Inspecta Deck and
Esoteric trade rhymes packed with references to comic book artist Steve Ditko, San Antonio Spurs coach
Gregg Popovich and jazz pianist Dave Brubeck.
MF Doom has always been an artist of interest, with dedicating fans searching for diligently for any
morsel of sound they can find. Since Doom’s unexpected death in October, 2020, (though not
announced until two months later) the hunger for all things Doom has only intensified. Czarface Meets
Metal Face will not only please these Doom fans, but anyone who enjoys a more laid-back style of hip
hop more interested in having fun than tough posturing – with better lyrical and rhyming skills to boot. -Joel Francis
Doors – L.A. Woman (50th Anniversary Deluxe Edition, With LP, Anniversary Edition)
Depeche Mode- Ultra
DREAMVILLE – Revenge Of The Dreamers III (J.Cole)
Descendents- 9th & Walnut
Nearly 40 years after their debut album, So-Cal punk rockers the Descendents have gone back to their
roots. In 2002, drummer Bill Stevenson invited former members Tony Lombardo, bass guitar, and
guitarist Frank Navetta to record songs from the early days that for whatever reason never made it onto
an album. During last year’s shutdown, Stevenson sent the tapes to singer Milo Aukerman to add vocals.
Although the musicians in their 40s and 50s performed songs written as teenagers or 20-somethings,
the Descendents don’t have any problem summoning their youthful energy. Guitarist Navetta wrote
more than half of the songs 9th and Walnut. He died in 2008, so the album also serves as a memorial to
his writing and talents.
Named after the quartet’s old rehearsal space, 9th and Walnut’s 18 songs go by in a high-octane blur of
25 minutes. This blink-and-you’ll-miss-it approach makes it tough for any songs to stand out from the
others – they are each done in about 90 seconds – but a few do make the jump. “Tired of Being Tired”
has nice harmony vocals. Hearing a grown man passionately deliver childish insults on “You Make Me
Sick” and throw a tantrum on the next track, “It’s My Hair,” is amusing. An exuberant cover of the Dave
Clark Five’s “Glad All Over” ends the album on a high note.
A couple of the songs on 9th and Walnut were released as the band’s first single back in 1980, before
Aukerman joined the band. The new version of “Ride the Wild” lacks the lo-fi, surf guitar charm of the
original. The re-recording of “It’s a Hectic World” maintains the original tempo, but misses the nervous
It would be unrealistic to expect the nuance and growth the Descendents showed on later albums in this
collection of early songs. For what it is, 9 th and Walnut is an instant party, brief though it may be. Just be
sure to have a few more Descendents albums ready to cue up to keep the good times rolling. -Joel Francis
Fela Kuti – Box Set 5 (Poster, With Booklet)
Garbage – beautifulgarbage (180 Gram Vinyl, 20th Anniversary Edition)
Gillian Welch and David Rawlings – All The Good Times
Over the course of folk/Americana performer Gillian Welch’s 25-year career, she’s written songs
recorded by Emmylou Harris, Trisha Yearwood, Alison Krauss, Jimmy Buffett and many others. Now,
after releasing five albums of all-original material with husband and collaborator David Rawlings, Welch
flips the script with an all-covers album.
All the Good Times features 10 songs written by expected influences, such as Bob Dylan, John Prine and
Norman Blake, and several traditional numbers. Surprisingly, the album takes a few tracks to get off the
ground. The arrangement of “Oh Babe, It Ain’t No Lie” is so delicate and pretty it is hard to believe
Welch when she signs “I wish to my soul that old woman would die” in the first verse of the opening
song. Rawling’s treatment of Dylan’s “Senor” lacks the patient beauty that made Willie Nelson and
Calexico’s reading so transfixing on the I’m Not There soundtrack more than a dozen years ago.
Fortunately, All the Good Times lifts off on the third song, “Fly Around My Pretty Little Miss.” Welch and
Rawlings’ arrangement of this traditional number rests somewhere between a lullaby and a singalong.
Welch nails the loneliness at the heart of Prine’s “Hello in There.” The duo have a lot of fun with
“Jackson,” a big hit for Johnny Cash and June Carter in 1967.
That All the Good Times is Welch’s first album in nearly a decade is cause enough for many to pick up
this release. Fortunately, Welch’s impeccable quality control is nearly as strong on her choice of covers
as it is with her own material. -Joel Francis
GoGo Penguin – Ocean In A Drop
Greta Van Fleet- The Battle At Garden’s Gate
Hotline – You Are Mine
J. Cole – The Off-Season
Jerry Garcia / John Kahn – Garcialive Volume 14: January 27th, 1986 The Ritz
Jerry Garcia- Jerry Garcia Band (30th Anniversary, Deluxe Edition, 180 Gram Vinyl)
Joe Bonamassa – Now Serving: Royal Tea Live From The Ryman (Clear Vinyl)
Kacey Musgraves- star-crossed
Kendrick Lamar- Good Kid, M.A.A.D City
Kenny Burrell- Midnight Blue
Liam Kazar- Due North
Tweedy, Chance the Rapper and Daniel Johnston, Liam Kazar finally dropped his solo debut.
Putting Due North on the turntable is like turning on a light – it makes everything in the room glow a
little brighter and radiate warmth. Album closer “Something Tender” manages to combine ‘80s
synthesizers with pedal steel guitar offers words of comfort about an ex-girlfriend. Single “Frank Bacon”
finds Kazar offer support to a friend over a tight, funky drum pattern from Spencer Tweedy, son of Wilco
frontman Jeff Tweedy.
The senior Tweedy’s influence can be felt on Due North, but never blatantly, mostly manifest in phrasing
and arrangements. Similarities to David Byrne are evident in Kazar’s vocal delivery and sometimes-
serpentine guitar lines, but Kazar has progressed well beyond the game of spot-the-influence.
Two years ago, Kazar moved from Chicago to Kansas City. We are fortunate to have him as part of our
music community. It will be fun to see where Kazar goes. After so much time on the sideline, it is
obvious Kazar has absorbed a lot and is ready to lead. -Joel Francis
Michael Jackson – HIStory: Continues
Michael Jackson – Dangerous (180 Gram Vinyl)
Mammoth Wvh- Mammoth WVH
Mark Knopfler – Down The Road Wherever (With CD, Boxed Set)
Metallica – 5.98 Ep – Garage – Garage Days Re-revisited
The Muslims – F*** These F***in Facists (Pink Colored Vinyl, Indie Exclusive)
Mono – Formica Blues
No – not THAT band Mono from Japan. THIS Mono was a British electronic duo consisting of Martin Virgo on sounds and female vocalist Siobhan de Maré. It was criminal of Mercury Records not to back this duo up, resulting in only one album, “Formica Blues” – a late 90s gem of a trip-hop album that harkens Portishead, Massive Attack and Saint Etienne vibes. Luckily for us, Music On Vinyl is reissuing this album on vinyl.
Originally released in 1997, “Formica Blues” leads off with their biggest single, “Life In Mono”, which was also featured in the 1998 movie “Great Expectations”. It also was the subject of many club mixes. One mix entitled “Alice Band Mix” which was included on the CD version has a great bass-line groove with spooky strings in the background. I’m hoping it’s included here.
“Silicone”, “Slimcea Girl” and “High Life” were also released as singles, the latter being a homage to Martin Virgo’s self-stated biggest influence, Phil Spector. He wanted to capture that “wall-of-sound”, Ronettes style of 60’s pop, and “High Life” delivers in spades. Track 4, “The Outsider”, has a dark, mysterious ambiance that just envelopes the listener and is probably my favorite.
Breathy vocals, sample loops, trip-hop and downtempo beats permeate every track on this album. Siobhan’s dreamlike delivery over the hypnotic soundscapes makes this album a worthy addition to any record collection. -David Lombardo
Naughty By Nature – Naughty By Nature (30th Anniversary) (Yellow & Green Splatter Vinyl, 140 Gram Vinyl)
Nikki Giovanni – Like A Ripple On A Pond (Blue Clear Vinyl)
Nikki Giovanni – Way I Feel (Red Clear Vinyl)
The New Pornographers – Mass Romantic (Red Colored Vinyl, Limited Edition, With Bonus 7″)
Norah Jones- I Dream Of Christmas
Neutral Milk Hotel- In the Aeroplane Over the Sea
Nirvana- In Utero
The Notorious B.I.G. – Ready To Die (140 Gram Vinyl)
Nas – Illmatic
Olivia Rodrigo- Sour
Osees – Levitation Sessions II (Red, Blue, Colored Vinyl, Indie Exclusive)
The dearth of live shows in 2020 has revealed an unexpected bounty in 2021. Because live performances
were so rare, most acts recorded them. The steady trickle of those professionally recorded shows is a
treasure for dedicated fans.
In the autumn of 2020, California-based garage/psych rockers Oh Sees played a concert in the desert
that was livestreamed and now released on vinyl. This 15-song, 50-minute set encompasses classic
numbers, such as “The Fizz,” as well as newer material like “Terminal Jape.”
Band leader John Dwyer delivers a tight set, with each song building off the previous number,
culminating in the nearly 12-minute finale “Block of Ice.” The performance is blunted because its
placement on a bonus 7-inch single, necessitating an inconvenient fade in/fade out in the middle when
the side needs flipped. Despite this, band plays with a passionate abandon that will not be denied.
Perhaps the best news about the Oh Sees’ Levitation Session is that a second volume is also available
(and nearly twice as long). It almost makes up for not being able to be there in person. -Joel Francis
Prince – Purple Rain (Picture Disc Vinyl LP)
Prince – Welcome 2 America (Gatefold LP Jacket, 150 Gram Vinyl, Etched Vinyl)
Prince – Welcome 2 America (With CD, With Blu-ray, Boxed Set, Deluxe Edition)
Puss N Boots – Sister
Queen – Greatest Hits
Radiohead – Kid A Mnesia (Gatefold LP Jacket, 3LP)
Robert Plant & Alison Krauss – Raise The Roof (180 Gram Vinyl, Indie Exclusive, Alternate Cover)
Sam Cooke – Portrait of a Legend 1951-1964
Steve Lacy – Distant Voices
The Silvertones – Silver Bullets (Limited Edition, 180 Gram Vinyl, Orange Colored Vinyl)
Slothrust – Parallel Timeline (Yellow Colored Vinyl, Indie Exclusive)
Sturgill Simpson- High Top Mountain
Townes Van Zandt – Rear View Mirror
Warlock – Warlock (140 Gram Vinyl)
William Hooker – Symphonie Of Flowers
Velvet Underground & Nico- The Velvet Underground & Nico
Wolf Alice – Blue Weekend
It only takes a few moments listening to Blue Weekend to realise that is not a fate which awaits Wolf Alice. This is an album which feels like a huge step forward, a statement of intent even. The choice of Markus Dravs as producer is a wise one – the man who remoulded the sound of the likes of Arcade Fire and Florence And The Machine has created a huge canvas for the band to properly develop on.
Like all the best albums, Blue Weekend hops from genre to genre. There’s mosh-friendly punk on Play The Greatest Hits, which follows the beautiful FM rock ballad sheen of How Can I Make It OK. There’s sad break-up songs like No Hard Feelings and defiant, gnarly rock like Smile. Above all, there’s a swell and confidence to the entire album – about two minutes into the opening track The Beach, you realise you’re listening to something very special.
Smile has a bite and thrust about it which grabs you right from the start – it almost feels like a musical manifesto with lines like “I am what I am, and I’m good at it, and if you don’t like me, well that isn’t f@#&ing relevant”. It bursts into life in the chorus, with the sort of irresistible swagger that you can only imagine how great it would sound in the live arena.
The more reflective moments work equally well. How Can I Make It OK is a synth-heavy ballad with an understated chorus that buries itself deep inside your head. It’s The Last Man On Earth which really marks Wolf Alice’s arrival into a whole new stratosphere though – beginning as a fragile piano ballad before swelling gloriously into a huge, choral-led number.
By the time The Beach II rolls around to close the album, you’ll want to go back to the start and listen to it all again. Blue Weekend is Wolf Alice’s best work yet – a confident and blistering spin that’s guaranteed to be on many people’s ‘best of’ lists at the end of the year. Never mind the Mercury Prize – this is an album with its sights firmly set on the Grammys. Pick up a copy while they last from your friends at the vinyl underground. – Albert Schmurr
Wiz Khalifa- Rolling Papers
Pittsburgh rapper Wiz Khalifa’s major-label was hotly anticipated on the back of mixtapes and the sports
anthem “Black and Yellow.” What arrived didn’t match those expectations, but still holds up as a fun
listen a decade later.
Rolling Papers found Khalifa embracing big pop hooks and working in the same vein as B.o.B. or a more
accessible Kid Cudi or Curren$y. Cries of sellout quickly arrived from the hardcore hip hop community,
but everyone else was having too much fun dancing and singing along to care.
“No Sleep,” one of two Top 40 singles from Rolling Papers, is an upbeat jam about partying all weekend
that never fails to bring a smile to my face. On the synthed-out bliss of “Roll Up,” the album’s other Top
40 single, Khalifa promises to be boyfriend every woman deserves.
Other high points include, “Wake Up,” another jubilant party track, the break-up song “Get Your Sh-t”
and “Rooftops,” where Khalifa gets an assist from Curren$y. Production from StarGate, Eric Dan and
others splash the songs with day-glo ‘80s synthesizer tracks and handclaps, which make the album feel
like a continuous party. A few introspective, downbeat tracks pause the good times just long enough to
offer a moment to rest before the next fiesta hits high gear.
In subsequent releases, Khalifa has dialed down the fun to demonstrate his hip hop cred. Good for him,
but he’s never released an album as accessible and infectious as Rolling Papers. -Joel Francis
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Which records, tapes, and CDs are your favorite local artists buying? On this episode of Record Shopping with Shuttlecock, we head to The Vinyl Underground at 7th Heaven (7621 Troost Ave., Kansas City, Missouri) with Kansas City-via-Chicago singer-songwriter Liam Kazar to do some digging. Tune in to find out what he copped. Liam Kazar’s debut album, Due North, is out now via Mare/Woodsist and is available at record stores and on all digital streaming platforms. Follow @ShuttlecockMag on social media and visit www.ShuttlecockMusic.com. Grab a t-shirt, button, or magazine from www.ShuttlecockMag.BigCartel.com to support the channel. Make sure to like, subscribe, and share.
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Enjoy the music and we will see you soon. Your loving Vinyl Underground at 7th Heaven staff:
Sherman, Gordon, Cat, Matt, Dylan, Doyle, Heather, Dave and Lain