On The Turntable

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    Neil Young

    Neil Young :: Homegrown

    Considered one of the holy grails of the “lost” Neil Young album, the deeply-mythologized Homegrown finally sees an official release this summer, since being shelved by Young in 1975 in place of Tonight’s the Night. The alternate timeline here presents an almost, bizarre Ditch-trilogy version of Harvest. A plaintive and fertile country soil sets the stage, soaked in wistful pedal-steel, but populated by agitated demons.

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    Alabaster DePlume

    Alabaster DePlume :: To Cy & Lee: Instrumentals Vol. 1

    To Cy & Lee is an absolutely gorgeous hybrid, bringing together Ethio-jazz, Britfolk, pastoral/spiritual vibes and more. The mood is somehow both restful and restless as DePlume weaves a rich sonic tapestry. Strings, flutes, guitars, piano, gentle percussion … It feels like springtime is here again.

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    Nina Simone

    Nina Simone :: Fodder on My Wings

    Recorded shortly after her move to Paris, Nina Simone’s Fodder on My Wings was, for almost three decades, relegated to its obscure 1982 French-only release. Finally reissued for the masses earlier this year, the album opens a window into a previously unknown part of the songstress’ career, exorcising her grief and ghosts through excursions in calypso, jazz, and funk, as well as haunted folk chants and, in moments such as the mystifying title track and a breathtaking stark telling of her father’s passing, fusions of a baroque soul and playful outsider pop. Simone has been historically remembered as aloof during this period in her life, but on these songs she bears her soul naked.

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    Jon Mckiel

    Jon Mckiel :: Bobby Joe Hope

    Hailing from Nova Scotia, Jon Mckiel has created one of the great sleeper records of the year. Patching samples from an unknown origin found in a used Teac A-2340 with a wistful cosmic country air, he has made something immediately timeless. As much a Sunday morning coffee record as it is a long, humid summer evening. Lo-fi psychedelic rock, echo-chambers of noise, and bedroom soul converse in an imaginative world where Broadcast and Cotton Jones might have jammed together.

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    Mosses :: T.V. Sun

    A collaboration between Ryan Jewell and Danette Bordenkircher, the debut full-length from Mosses is a kaleidoscopic trip, encompassing a wide swathe of psychedelia. We’ve got Barrett-era Floyd mayhem, Can-y jams, Espers-esque folk (Meg Baird even drops in for a guest spot), OG Modern Lovers boogies and much more …

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    Leo Takami

    Leo Takami :: Felis Catus and Silence

    The Tokyo-based composer and guitarist crafts an enthusiastically imaginative blend of new age sounds, shaping Windham Hill-inspired guitar compositions with elements of jazz, minimalism, classical music, Japanese gagaku, and ambient textures.

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    Pure X

    Pure X :: Pure X

    Such elegies make for unintended eeriness in 2020. America, like rock ‘n roll, can be seduced by myths of its own destruction. And yet this is the sound of a band once again living for its music. What Pure X is bearing witness to, unmistakably, is its own will to rebirth.

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    Brigid Mae Power

    Brigid Mae Power :: Head Above the Water

    The first taste from the Irish singer/songwriter’s third long player—the lush “On a City Night”—is an organ and pedal steel-soaked country shuffle. Plaintively furtive in its imagery, the tune plays like a deceptive still life; its characters in a state of suspended animation while the world blurs in motion.

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Zachary Cale :: False Spring

It’s been almost five years since Zachary Cale’s last full-length (the excellent Duskland) — but he’s made up for lost time with his new double LP False Spring. It’s the songwriter’s best effort yet, understated yet ambitious, polished but never slick. It also feels hauntingly relevant to our current situation, as Cale depicts a chaotic world, confusion around every corner, apocalypse on the horizon.

It’s Only Life, That’s All (A Nap Eyes Mixtape)

With his “It’s Only Life, That’s All” playlist, Nap Eyes guitarist Brad Loughead created a mix “mainly as a way to occupy myself, [to] get lost in beautiful music and turn my brain off.” It encompasses familiar themes—”of love, mortality, troubled times…’ya know, the light stuff,” but like Nap Eyes’ fourth lp, Snapshot of a Beginner, it achieves a powerful effect by just easing on by.

Shirley Collins :: Wondrous Love

There are voices. And then there are Voices. With “Wondrous Love,” Shirley Collins reminds us she’s in the latter category, bringing fresh humanity this early 1800s Sacred Harp hymn (with roots stretching back even further to the British isles).

Transmissions :: 15 Years of Aquarium Drunkard (Live on The Tonight Zone)

And we’re back. Welcome to another installment of Transmissions. For this episode, we’re bringing you one from the Radio Free Aquarium Drunkard’s archives: a live conversation with Ben Kramer and our founder Justin Gage, discussing 15 years of Aquarium Drunkard. Though RFAD is on pause, keep your eyes open for the eventual return of the Tonight Zone, Kramer’s late night call-in show. For now, tune in and drift as Kramer and Gage discuss the evolution and vision behind Aquarium Drunkard.

Tune In, Zone Out :: Silent Ways

Silent Ways offers an immersive submersion into the depths of “In A Silent Way.” Composed by Joe Zawinul and made famous as the title track of Miles Davis’ first all-electric LP, it’s a song that doesn’t attempt to stop time as much as it attempts control time. Speed it up, slow it down, stretch it out, turn it upside down

Pretty Good Stuff :: Episode Six

Bob Dylan historian James Adams’ Pretty Good Stuff. Hosted by Adams himself, the hour-long program dove deep into the depths of all things Dwarf Music.

Fear not, Bobcats: while the signal may be on pause, the revelry continues as we are continuing the show on a monthly basis in this new format.

13th Floor Elevators: A Visual History

Antiquarian bookseller and author Paul Drummond’s new book 13th Floor Elevators: A Visual History gathers together a wealth of materials, including photos, clippings, show flyers, stills, and legal documents. Here, editor Mark Iosifescu discusses bringing the uncanny saga of the Elevators to life.