Wednesday, December 31, 2008

New Arrivals list #308 + "Top Tens"

In the hustle and bustle of the holidays, we almost neglected to do a blog post calling attention to our latest New Arrivals list... here's a reminder, in case you were so busy with yuletide stuff and suchlike to notice, we sent out New Arrivals list #308 last Friday, the day after Christmas (a heroic effort on the part of Andee and the rest of the skeleton AQ-crew who hadn't gone off on vacation). You can find it on our website, here.
We didn't pick any Records Of The Week, but you'll see there were more than a few excellent contenders amidst the Highlights. Mainly, we just were worried that because of the Christmas/New Year's break that so many of our suppliers were taking, we couldn't or wouldn't be able to get enough of whichever one(s) we might have liked to pick for ROTW.

ALSO, on this list, you'll find the AQ staffers' favorite records of 2008 lists! Which means it's also time for you to send us your Top Ten lists for the year. Please email 'em to

And, everyone, have a very happy New Year!!

Monday, December 22, 2008

Holiday (psych rock) musjic

As all you probably learned if you tried to order a copy of the Wooden Shjips' special limited edition charity Holiday Cassingle that we listed in on New Arrivals #307, they didn't last long... The 35 copies we had were gone in no time flat, raising a total of $175 for the S.F. Food Bank!

However, even if you didn't manage to snag one of those tapes, you still have a chance to knock back eggnog while enjoying the Shjips' psyched-up interpretations of "O Tannenbaum" and "Auld Lang Syne", 'cause they've posted mp3's of these to their website! Just click on the gift-wrapped present, and you'll find 'em. And as the band suggests, please consider making a donation to your local food bank, too.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Remember what we're always sayin' about 1971?

That it would be pretty darn impossible to come up with a "top 10" list at the end of the year, if the year was 1971. 'Cause there were sooooooo many incredible releases, how could you pick? Well, the folks at the Peacedogman website (a great music-fan site that you rockers out there should be browsing anyway) have taken their best shot at compiling an annotated top 25 guide to 1971, demonstrating the difficulty of sorting out the mindblowing godliness of that year, music-wise... Black Sabbath, The Who, Led Zeppelin, Funkadelic, Comus, Can, HawkwindMC5, Alice Cooper (x2)... it makes us want to not even bother with the 2008 Top 20 lists we're working on right now!!

The Peacedog list is pretty right-on, we'd have changed the order and added/subtracted a few records for sure, but like we said, it's a difficult task. Take a look a the list, and then figure out what you could possibly take off - to make room for Flower Travellin' Band "Satori", Neu! "1", Pink Floyd "Meddle", Hampton Grease Band "Music To Eat", Los Dug Dug's, Leaf Hound "Growers Of Mushroom", Culpeper's Orchard, etc. etc....

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

New Arrivals list #307

Of course, we meant to publish this post before now - the list was last Friday, but we were up so late working on it we forgot to blog about it the next day like usual. If you haven't been pouring over it already all weekend, you can find it here.

Our two loopy Records Of The Week:
Loop "Heaven's End" (Reactor) 2cd $16.98
Loop "Fade Out" (Reactor) 2cd $16.98
The first two albums by this late '80s British band. Spaced out, druggy droney psych, hard rockin' and hypnotic. Essential of course!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Dee Dee Ramone had good taste in T-shirts

Pretty cool, eh? Dee Dee rockin' an Aquarius T back in the day. Gabba Gabba Hey. This shot comes from an upcoming "ebook" (?) of pictures from the Ramones '76 West Coast tour by photographer Jenny Lens. There's a post about it at boing boing with more images. Thanks to AQ customer Michael Greenwood for pointing this out to us!

Now we're thinking maybe we should have some retro-AQ T-shirts made up with that design! I remember we used to have letterhead paper with that ol' flaming A-shaped-guitar logo on it, and I was already planning on scanning that and putting it on this blog. Would make a good tattoo as well...

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Preorders, please: Boredoms "77Boadrum" 2cd+book+dvd!!!

Wow. A double cd, photo book, and dvd package documenting the Boredoms' 77 drummer extravaganza that took place in Brooklyn on 7/7/2007! Pretty enticing, eh? It'll sell for $125. Ouch.

We should be getting copies of this fancy item late next week, but since it's such a pricey import we can't really order very many. So, we thought it would be a good idea to solicit pre-orders. So, if you really really want one, please let us know via email (to in the next few days and we'll make sure get enough of 'em and have one set aside for you... One thing though, since it's so expensive, we'll have ask for prepayment, and then we'll tack on shipping later (probably $6.50 UPS if you're domestic).

Here's some more detailed info from our distributor about this crazy thing:
"Deluxe package containing the full 100-minute '77 Boa Drum' performance on 2 CDs, split at the point in between the two sections of the piece. The two CDs are housed inside the front and back covers of a lovely 8"x12" hardcover book containing 28 pages of full color photos from the event. Also included is a DVD (NTSC format, All Region) including approximately 20 minutes of short segments from the performance. The presentation on this is truly top-notch. It's easily the most extravagant Boredoms artefact since 1999's Vision Creation Newsun box. The performance itself is an extraordinary example of the modern-day Boredoms approach to sprawling, rhythmic psychedelia. Their current lineup of three drummers (including mainstay Yoshimi P-We) plus EYE on electronics and vocals is further bolstered by an all-star cast of 74 additional drummers, including Hisham Bharoocha (Soft Circle, ex-Black Dice), Kid Millions (Oneida), Aaron Moore (Volcano The Bear), Tim DeWitt (ex-Gang Gang Dance), Dave Nuss (No Neck Blues Band), ANDEE CONNORS (A Minor Forest, Lumen), Sara Lund (Unwound), Ryan Sawyer (Tall Firs), Josh Madell (Antietam) and Brian Chippendale (Lightning Bolt) at #77."

Some locals-only announcements

A few events of note to San Francisco locals that we thought we'd mention...

• Our pal Peter, one of the amazing artists from Creativity Explored, dropped by the other day to remind us that CE's 2008 Holiday Art sale begins this week. The opening reception is Friday, December 5th, from 6pm to 9pm, and the sale/show runs through Dec. 30th. Original art by over 100 artists! Check it out.
Creativity Explored, located at 3245 16th St. in the Mission near Guerrero, is a non-profit visual arts center devoted to artists with developmental disabilities. Click here for more info on the holiday sale.

• There's some particularly interestin' experimental music stuff going on at The Lab the weekend after next. Details as follows:

23five Incorporated will be hosting two nights of work by the experimental sound art project Illusion Of Safety at The Lab, in celebration of the 25th anniversary for the Chicago based ensemble. These performances will take place on Friday, December 12, 2008 and Saturday, December 13, 2008, and will also include appearances from Thomas Dimuzio, Wobbly, RK Faulhaber, Leticia Casteneda, and Barn Owl.

Illusion Of Safety (Chicago)
Barn Owl (SF)
Leticia Casteneda (LA)

Dan Burke + Thomas Dimuzio (Chicago / SF)
Wobbly (SF)
R.K. Faulhaber (San Jose)

Both performances start at 8pm with an admission of $8.00.

Revolving around its principle artist and founder Dan Burke, Illusion of Safety is now entering its 25th year of existance, having produced a large and challenging body of sound art through performance, installation, and recording. In Burke's own words, "Illusion Of Safety intrepidly charts the terra incognita where sound, silence, noise and music intersect. Using conventional instruments, sound generating devices and random objects, IOS hews sonic sculptures that deliberately provoke, mesmerize and even affront listeners. IOS currently with electronic synthesis, computer composition, and manipulation of historical musical references and highly amplified handled objects. IOS uses semi-recognizable preexisting structural elements and rearrangements of the 'language of error' to convey external stimuli and personal internal context. The results are destroyed music, broken sound, disturbed ambience and the quest for the sublime." Previous participants in Illusion Of Safety include Jim O'Rourke, Thymme Jones, Chris Block, and Mark Klein; and Illusion Of Safety has performed over 200 times throughout the United States and Europe.

The San Francisco duo Barn Owl is comprised of Jon Porras and Evan Caminiti, who in the words of Foxy Digitalis, "work out their engaging blend of drone drift, spectral blues, and subterranean rumble to near perfection." Barn Owl has released music on Root Strata, Foxy Digitalis, and Not Not Fun.

Leticia Castaneda is an audio engineer and sound artist living in Los Angeles, California. Recent compositions examine the ability to abandon personal inhibitions while simultaneously reacting to acoustical interference. The quality or the protean nature of amplification has a direct affect upon Castaneda's composition. Her live work combines extreme external confusion with deep innate clarity to build a dramatic pause of time and sound.

San Francisco-based Thamas Dimuzio is a composer, multi-instrumentalist, sound designer, experimental electronic musician, collaborator and recording studio owner. Dimuzio has been busy doing his thing since the late 1980's, but is still only known to a small circle of electronic music enthusiasts. A true sonic alchemist who can seemingly create music events out of almost anything, Dimuzio's listed sound sources on his various CDs include everything from "modified 10 speed bicycle" and "resonating water pipe" to short-wave radios, loops, samplers and even normal instruments such as clarinet and trumpet. And while his wide range of musical interests make it impossible to pin a label on him, Dimuzio clearly has an insider's knowledge of older experimental musical forms such as musique concrete and electro-acoustic, as well as more current ambient-industrial, noise and post-techno styles.

R.K. Faulhaber is something of a mysterious figure, looming around such ensembles as Nurse With Wound and irr. app. (ext.) while keeping his own work of textured electro-acoustics a hermetic secret. Nurse With Wound's Steven Stapleton will be pulling Faulhaber out of obscurity, as Stapleton's United Dairies is to publish Faulhaber's debut album sometime in 2009.

Wobbly began as an improvised live mix radio program in Santa Barbara In 1990 and since 1994 has become the unintentional pseudonym of Jon Leidecker. Live performances are still laptop free and search for the extended narratives spun from countless layers of samples, polyphony improvised from musicians who have yet to meet. Tonight's concert will be the fourth performance of 'Refuge' for quarter-speed throat singing, artifacts captured from malfunctioning software, 1024 oscillators, tape echo, aluminum gamelan, bowed attic springs and falling grandfather clocks paused on impact. Selected recent albums are freely available online. Previous and ongoing collaborators include Thomas Dimuzio, People Like Us,
Matmos, Anne McGuire, Negativland, Tim Perkis, Antimatter, Blevin Blectum, Lesser, the Evolution Control Committee, Otomo Yoshihide, Zeena Parkins & MaryClare Brzytwa.

for more information:

• Thursday, December 18th at Slim's, Yahowa 13 are back in town! If you missed 'em last year at Du Nord, you've got another chance to see this legendary spiritual psych rock outfit in action. Their first new album in over 30 years (!) "Sonic Portation" is also quite recommended, you can find our review of it here.

We're giving away 2 pairs of tickets to this show, as well. Send an email to store@aquariusrecords with "Yahowa 13 tix" in the subject line, and we'll enter your name in a drawing to win 'em.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

New Arrivals list #306

Just the usual notice in case you didn't see it on our website already, it's there...

Our Records Of The Week this time:
Coh "Strings" (Raster-Noton) 2cd $23.00
Amazing minimal electronica assembled from manipulated stringed instrument recordings, piano-techno to heavy metal guitar drone to Middle Eastern oud-glitch, very cool in both concept and execution.
Fennesz "Black Sea" (Touch) cd $15.98
Digital electronics-meets-guitar bliss from another big AQ fave. These cold soundscapes may be his best yet!
Ulaan Khol "II" (Soft Abuse) cd $14.98
Steven R. Smith's Ulaan Khol trilogy reaches its second installment, one whose majestic guitar radiance wows us like a more psych-rock version of Zomes. We liked the first Ulaan Khol a lot too but this one's even better!

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving!

FYI, we'll be closed all day tomorrow, Thursday 11/27. Busy giving thanks, feasting, and (oh yeah) writing reviews for our New Arrivals list #306 on Friday. Locals, see you then, we'll be open at 10am on Friday as per usual, albeit with turkey or tofurkey hangovers. Mailorderers sending us emails, you may have to wait 'til Saturday to hear back from us, since no-one's going to be in the office tomorrow and Friday will be a hectic list-day... Ok, have a terrific holiday everybody!

We're in the movies, sort of...

Here at AQ, we're often writing things about Harvey Milk. But, being AQ, it's always stuff about the band Harvey Milk, and not the man for whom the band was named.

So, we encourage everyone to go see the new the new movie, Milk, which opened in theaters today. Directed by Gus Van Sant and starring Sean Penn, Milk is about the life and times (and tragic assassination) of '70s San Francisco supervisor and gay rights leader, Harvey Milk, the nation's first openly gay elected official. We're looking forward to seeing it, and plan on doing so at the Castro Theatre, naturally, where it'll be playing all month.

And not only do we know a few fellas who were extras in the film (including one of Allan's housemates, and one of the guys from Sic Alps) but Aquarius itself gets some screen time! Well, not our actual store here on Valencia Street, but a Hollywood re-creation of our storefront exactly where it used to be back in the day on Castro Street, where we started off, right next door to Harvey Milk's camera shop. That's what's pictured above.

When the film was shooting, someone from the Milk production team actually called here to see if we had an old sign they could use... we didn't, so they made their own. It's supposed to be very '70s psychedelic, though it looks kinda rave-y to us. If you look closely at the posters in the window, they're all for made-up bands.

We asked old AQ owner Butch if the Milk version of Aquarius looked at all authentic. He said, nope. But it's still cool they tried!

The Milk folks did their best to give the whole Castro area a retro makeover for the filming. Our pal Matt Wobensmith blogged a bit about it here when it was happening. (That's where the picture above came from, thanks Matt).

And on the New York Times website today, there's a photo essay slide show thing about Milk that includes a shot of the "fake" old AQ.

So, on a related note: does anyone have any old photos of Aquarius on Castro St. they'd like to share? We'd be curious, we've never seen what either of AQ's early incarnations on Castro St. looked like (we were in two different locations there in the '70s before moving to Noe Valley in the '80s and then over to where we are now in the Mission in 1996).

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Jinxed it

Dang, the Joust machine is already acting up. The screen seems to be on the blink. We probably jinxed it by blogging about it the other day. Fortunately, we're grateful to have a friend, Brett, who knows a thing or two about vintage video game machines (he has an arcade's worth of them in his house) and he's gonna be coming by soon to take a look at the Joust and the Rastan and see if he can fix 'em...

Monday, November 24, 2008


Here's a close-up view of our cassette cabinet (which, we forgot to mention when we described how we fit a new arcade game and new LP rack in the store, we moved from near the listening station, over to the wall next to the new metal cds). The usual lo-fi black metal and floorcore noise cassettes, which primarily populate this cabinet, have been joined by some South American and Indonesian '60s garage psychedelia reissued by the new cassette-only label Plus Tapes...

Between-lists new arrivals roundup

Here's some (but not all) of the stuff we got in since list #305 went out. Some (but not all) of these will be reviewed this Friday on list #306.

One of the more eagerly-awaited items you'll see listed below is the Jewelled Antler Library box set. We have just a few of those left over from the shipment we received, 'cause we had so many pre-orders! So if you didn't preorder it, and want one, better let us know asap! (Those who pre-ordered it should have heard from us already, and in most cases we've already shipped your Jewelled Antler Library box off to you. Thanks!)

There's also the Buddha Machine II (new loops, new colors, and pitch control!!), a few new Mississippi releases, that trilogy of Hawkwind tribute split 7"s on Trensmat, a new issue of The Wire, a new NWOFHM effort from Steel Mammoth, and well, see for yourself, kinda crazy...

Acid Mothers Temple And The Cosmic Inferno / White Hills "Sonic Attack (Psychedelic Warlords)" (Trensmat) 7" $5.98
Animals & Men "Never Bought, Never Sold" (Mississippi) lp $10.98
Aidan Baker "Letters" (Basses Frequences) lp $17.98
Bible Of The Devil "Freedom Metal" (Cruz Del Sur) cd $11.98
Bible Of The Devil / Valkyrie "The Auld Dirt Road / False Dreams" (Heavy Birth Vinyl Records) 7" $5.98
Blood Ceremony "s/t" (Rise Above / Candlelight) cd $13.98
Brethren Of The Free Spirit "The Wolf Also Shall Dwell With The Lamb" (Important Records) cd $14.98
William S. Burroughs "Break Through In Grey Room" (Sub Rosa) cd/lp $14.98/$16.98
David Byrne & Brian Eno "Everything That Happens Will Happen Today" (Todomundo Ltd. / Opal Ltd.) cd $14.98
Colossal Yes "Charlemagne's Big Thaw" (Ba Da Bing) lp $13.98
Dara Puspita "A Go Go" (Plus Tapes) cassette $5.50
Dara Puspita "Green Green Grass" (Plus Tapes) cassette $5.50
Dara Puspita "Jang Pertama" (Plus Tapes) cassette $5.50
Dragging An Ox Through Water "The Tropics of Phenomenon" (Awesome Vistas) lp $14.98
Earthless "Live At Roadburn" (Tee Pee) 2cd/2lp $14.98/$15.98
Fennesz "Black Sea" (Touch) cd $15.98
Flaskavsae / Light Shall Prevail "split" (E.E.E Recordings) cd-r $13.98
FM3 "Buddha Machine II : Brown" (FM3) battery powered soundbox $26.00
FM3 "Buddha Machine II : Burgundy" (FM3) battery powered soundbox $26.00
FM3 "Buddha Machine II : Grey" (FM3) battery powered soundbox $26.00
Grouper / Inca Ore "split" (Acuarela) cd $21.00
Kieran Hebden and Steve Reid "NYC" (Domino) cd $15.98
J.T.IV "Cosmic Lightning" (Galactic Zoo Disc / Drag City) lp+dvd $24.00
Jackie-o Motherfucker "The Cryin' Sea" (Awesome Vistas) lp $14.98
Jarboe "Mahakali" (The End) cd $12.98
The Killers "Day & Age" (Island) cd $15.98
Kinski / Bardo Pond "Sonic Attack (Lords Of Light)" (Trensmat) 7" $5.98
Los Holys "Sueno Sicodelico" (Plus Tapes) cassette $5.50
Mudhoney / Mugstar "Sonic Attack (Motorheads)" (Trensmat) 7" $5.98
The Rats "s/t" (Mississippi) lp $12.98
Sacros "s/t" (Shadoks) cd $17.98
Sad Horse "North Portland Music Series, Volume #2" (Mississippi) 7" $3.98
Sorc'henn "Faro" (Crucial Bliss) cd-r $8.98
J. Spaceman & Matthew Shipp "SpaceShipp" (Treader) cd $17.98
Steel Mammoth "The Kingdom Of The Golden Hammer" (SuperMetsa / Ektro) cd $14.98
Susanna "Flower Of Evil" (Rune Grammofon) cd $17.98
Ulaan Khol "II" (Soft Abuse) cd $14.98
v/a "Dancehall: The Rise Of Jamaican Dancehall Culture" (Soul Jazz) 2cd $25.00
v/a "Dancehall: The Rise Of Jamaican Dancehall Culture Vol. 1" (Soul Jazz) 2lp $25.00
v/a "Dancehall: The Rise Of Jamaican Dancehall Culture Vol. 2" (Soul Jazz) 2lp $25.00
v/a "The Jewelled Antler Library" (Porter) 4cd box $61.00
Watain "Rabid Death's Curse" (Season Of Mist) cd $14.98
Kanye West "808s & Heartbreak" (Roc-A-Fella) cd $15.98
The Wire "#298 November 2009" magazine $9.98
Wooden Shjips "Vampire Blues / I Hear The Vibrations" (Sick Thirst) 7" $4.50

Friday, November 21, 2008

A new addition to the family

If you've been in the store lately, you've already seen it. Joust! The classic video arcade game from 1982. We have one here at AQ now, joining our other arcade machines, Andee's Tron and Allan's Rastan (which is currently out of order, but hopefully soon to be fixed). Andee surprised Allan with the Joust for his birthday a few weeks back, and as far as Allan is concerned, it's about the best birthday present ever. Understandably, Andee says it's Allan's Christmas present, too... C'mon in and play! (Andee is the current high score holder, with 111,900 175,550 points.)

Of course, Joust is best in 2-player mode, wherein you try to cooperate and not accidentally kill each other (except during the "gladiator" levels), so at some point we'll have to have a proper tournament...

If you're wondering where we put this Joust machine in our increasingly crowded store, well we put it where the magazine rack used to be, with the Rastan beside it. We then moved the Tron into the window space vacated by the Rastan. The magazines all went on a new spinny rack. And, somehow, we were able to also fit a whole new LP rack in where the Tron machine used to be! So vinyl browsers will have an easier time of it, and we can stock MORE LPs, yay!

If (if? when!) we get more arcade machines, though, it remains to be seen where we'll squeeze 'em in. And Allan and Andee are planning to attend a video game auction next month, uh oh...

Speaking of new additions to the family, also, we should formally introduce our newest (and tallest) staff member, Nick Ott. What with Cameron leaving to move to NYC, we're really glad to have Nick on board.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Andee doesn't hate these bands

Just can't seem to stop blogging today... Thought some folks might want to take a look at this, it's the latest installment our pal Brandon Stosuy's metal column for Pitchfork, Show No Mercy. As a year-end wrap-up, he's got his top ten of 2008... along with similar lists from a bunch of cool folks with good taste, members of Krallice, Gates Of Slumber, Skeletonwitch, Ludicra, Matmos, Enslaved, and others. Among 'em, a metal top ten from AQ's own Andee! (And some of his picks, we even still have copies of in stock, maybe!).
Even cooler, one of the other top ten lists, by Cosmo of the Invisible Oranges blog, includes haiku about each album.

Bogner fun

Our customer Steven Johnson in Baltimore emailed to say: "Hey there Aquarians... as usual your new arrivals email is helping me tear off the sleepy cobwebs of an early Saturday morning after the work week is done. Ursula Bogner made my week! So inspired I was, I took a gander at the Faitiche website for more morsels. What I found may excite you - should you not already be aware! You can play all the tracks on their website. But more importantly, you can play them at the same time! So one can take Bogner to a whole new level - everyone can be a Bogner mixmaster. I am still messing around with combinations, but so far my favorite is tracks 1 & 2 in combination. You can adjust volumes as well. Perhaps you may want to cue "Aqua-world" in to this little bit of web-fun?!"

Thanks Steve, indeed we do, everybody check it out here:

And while you're there, you can also read more about the fascinating Ursula Bogner... or perhaps we should say "Ursula Bogner"? The skeptical amongst us couldn't help noticing that there's a page on the Faitiche site that gives a definition of the label's name as being "a combination of facts and fetishes, and makes it obvious that the two have a common element of fabrication." Hmm.

9 Beet Stretch

In case all the drone records you've been purchasing here at Aquarius aren't quite enough, you can always tune into this:! It's a internet audio stream of Beethoven's 9th Symphony stretched, without pitch distortion, to 24 hours duration, basically turning it into a gorgeous "pop ambient" drone. It's been streaming on continuous loop since May of 2005... One of the best drone pieces ever!

Saturday, November 15, 2008

New Arrivals list #305

Has been uploaded / emailed out. For the next two weeks you can find it here if you haven't seen it already.

The 2 Records Of The Week, this week:
Ursula Bogner "Recordings 1969-1988" (Faitiche) cd/lp $19.98/$19.98
Hadn't ever heard of her before either, but as soon as we heard her lovingly packaged Recordings 1969-1988, we were smitten, fascinated by the secret sonic life of a mother and housewife, and entranced by her homebrewed hobbyist minimal analog electronic music that's so wonderfully playful and dreamy. Wow. And even if the compelling story of Ursula Bogner were not true (if, say, this was an elaborate hoax perpetrated by Jan Jelinek) we'd still love the music...
Tobacco "Fucked Up Friends" (Anticon) cd/lp $14.98/$14.98
Fuzzed out swap meet synths and vocodered '80 vocals in a WTF? electro pop concoction with guest rapping from Aesop Rock! In heavy rotation here at AQ...

Also, there's a new tUMULt release on this week's list:
The Memories Attack "s/t" (tUMULt/Noyes) cd $13.98
Nope, it's not any sort of black metal, not this time. This one's for the pop lovers out there, it's an album from a Canadian indie noise pop duo featuring one of the dudes from Eric's Trip.

Something to do next Wednesday nite (if you're in SF)

Our friend Ms. Maiko over at Alternative Tentacles passed this along... Ian Svenonius (Make Up, Scene Creamers, Nation Of Ulysses) interviews Richard and Alan Bishop of the Sun City Girls, and Jello Biafra, for a taping of Ian's show on Vice's, this coming Wednesday 11/19, 6:30pm at Cobb's Comedy Club in North Beach. It's free to attend but you gotta RSVP at if you want to go. Could be pretty interestin'!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Thanks for the plug!

This interview with the former music director at KFJC makes a nice mention of Aquarius, and also our pals at one of our other favorite radio stations, WFMU.

Oh and speaking of plugs, did you see our top ten sales chart in Rolling Stone magazine recently? It was in the one with AC/DC on the cover. Cute picture of Scott's band The Alps in there too...

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Midweek new arrivals roundup

These are some of the interesting items to have shown up here since last Friday's list...

Asva "Futurists Against The Ocean" (Southern) lp $23.00
Azrael Rising "s/t" (Primitive Reaction) cd ep $10.98
Bass Communion "II/III" (Beta-lactam Ring) 2cd $19.98
Bixobal "Number 5 October 2008" (Ri Be Xibalba) magazine $2.00
Blood Of The Black Owl "A Feral Spirit" (Aurora Borealis) lp $17.98
Bohren & Der Club Of Gore "Dolores" (Ipecac) cd $15.98
CSS "Move (Remixes)" (Sub Pop) 12" $4.98
Free Blood "The Singles" (Rong / DFA) cd $14.98
Low "Santa's Coming Over" (Sub Pop) 7" $4.98
Lucky Dragons "Dark Falcon" (Marriage) lp $15.98
Lucky Dragons "Dream Island Laughing Language" (Marriage) lp $16.98
Brother Jack McDuff "Gin & Orange" (Dusty Groove) cd $14.98
Megadeth "Rust In Peace" (Capitol) lp $22.00
Megapuss "Surfing" (Vapor) cd $15.98
Metallica "...And Justice For All" (Warner Bros) 2lp $25.00
No Age "Teen Creeps" (Sub Pop) 7" $3.98
Pelican / These Arms Are Snakes "Gold Diggers / Pink Mammoth" (Hydra Head) 10" $14.98
Piano Magic "Dark Horses" (MMM) cd $14.98
Pig Heart Transplant "Hope You Enjoy Heaven" (Sweatlung) cd $10.98
Rahdunes "Musick" (Sweatlung) cd $10.98
Reverend Bizarre "Dark World / Deceiver" (Primitive Reaction) 7" $9.98
Thou "The Retaliation of the Immutable Force of Nature" (Gilead Media) 12" $12.98
Tipsy "Buzzz" (Ipecac) cd $15.98
v/a "Titan: It's All Pop!" (Numero Group) 2cd $26.00

Both the Blood Of The Black Owl and the Pelican/These Arms Are Snakes split we will be getting in on cd, soon, too.

So, it seems we won't be moving Aquarius to Canada anytime soon, after all

Saturday, November 1, 2008

New Arrivals list #304

Haven't blogged much this week, sorry, that's 'cause we were busy working on the latest New Arrivals list, which you'll find here. Hope everyone had a Happy Halloween!

The four Records Of The Week, this week:
Nahvalr "s/t" (Enemies List) cd $13.98
Buzz upon buzz upon buzz. The first "open source" black metal record, from the same guys behind the blissed out blackened gloom metal of Have A Nice Life!
Fripp & Eno "(No Pussyfooting)" (DGM) 2cd $16.98
Fripp & Eno "Evening Star" (DGM) cd $15.98
Two crucial legendary albums by Fripp & Eno, remastered and reissued, sounding as good as ever, with a whole bonus disc on No Pussyfooting, ready to be worshipped by a new generation of listeners into the likes of Expo '70 and Growing.
Gore "Hart Gore/Mean Man's Dream" (Southern Lord) 2cd $17.98
Finally reissued together on two cds, two of THE most awesome records ever of groundbreaking minimal metallic crunch from this legendary Dutch trio.

PS. Vote vote vote!!!

Friday, October 24, 2008

The answers to yesterday's quiz

Hope you all enjoyed trying to figure these out! Our band-name-abbreviations quiz inspired a few comments (thanks!), so it seems like some folks did have fun with it.

For those of you who haven't taken the quiz yet, and still want to try, we're going to put the answers in the comments section, below. So you can still go try the quiz (to be found in a previous blog post from yesterday) without having accidentally glimpsed any of the answers yet.

Since yesterday, we also thought of a bunch more band initials we could have used, there's so many more... Ferinstance: VU, VBS, ZP, ZG, ANP, COF, JSBX, TGOS, BIN!, and of course WITTR.

SRB reminder

Don't forget, this Sunday 10/26/08 at 4pm, Sir Richard Bishop, guitar guru from the Sun City Girls, will be doing a free, acoustic instore performance here at Aquarius!

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Pop quiz time

Often in our reviews, to avoid wearisome typing, we'll use initials in place of lengthy band names. Of course, we would (or should) only use the abbreviation after mentioning the full band name at least once. Like, for example, if we were writing a review of an album by one of Allan's favorite bands, the Red Hot Chili Peppers, we might begin to refer to them as RHCP part way through the review. Sometimes the abbreviated version is in common use among fans of the band, sometimes it's just us.

Another example would be NWW = Nurse With Wound. Or, ADII = Amon Duul II.

Got it? Ok. Here's a whole bunch more to figure out (in no particular order). Some are probably pretty easy, some really, really tough. Let's just say, that while several AQ staffers aced this quiz, some other folks here could have done better. A lot better.

I think everyone got NWW, but HGP stumped almost everybody... And there's two (maybe three) special unfair tricky ones included below too.

Ready? Grab your number 2 pencils and see if you can guess who these bands/artists are:

1. BCM
2. OTC
3. SCG
4. BOC
5. FFB
6. DSO
8. BBA
10. 6FS
11. RFTC
12. DRC
13. NNCK
14. BBML
15. BMSR
17. MITB
18. DCD
19. NMH
20. FTB
21. BSBC
22. AMT
23. HGP
24. SRB
25. EITS
27. DRS
28. GBV
29. MBV
30. DCFC
31. FSA
32. 3MP
34. SRS
35. YLT
36. FOB
39. BTC
40. BPB
41. VDGG
42. TFUL282
43. W&C
44. B&S
45. IAS
46. AMF
49. DMBQ
50. MGR

We'll post the answers on the blog tomorrow. Good luck!

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Heavy metal raver psych punk friend rock alert

Another announcement for San Francisco locals: the band Wildildlife, featuring former AQ-er Matt, who are AWESOME, and we're not just saying that 'cause we love Matt, have two shows this coming weekend here in SF. They used to be based here, but moved up to Seattle earlier this year. Fortunately they tour a lot so we still get to see them, and Matt, now and again.

On Saturday, they're playing at The Hemlock with the mighty Mammatus (with whom they're touring). Three Leafs is also on the bill.

And then Sunday, we're told they're playing outdoors in the afternoon at the Potrero Del Sol Skatepark, at 25th and Utah. Shred! Not sure what time this show is, sorry. (Anyone know?). Hopefully not at 4, when we're having our Sir Richard Bishop instore...

Here's our review of their most recent release, the "'Live On WMFU" cd-r on Crucial Blast:

While we were sad to see our coworker Matt leave us a while back, if it meant helping unleash the true force of the wild beast that is Wildildlife upon the world, then we're happy to have done our part. As kick ass as their most recent full length was, playing live is where Wildildlife truly destroy, three mild mannered hairy dudes transformed into a fierce six legged, six armed, long haired, face melting, tripped out drug addled behemoth. And while their most recent tour was rife with drama, broken bones, stolen equipment and extortionist cabbies, the shows that did take place were the sort to not be soon forgotten. And while they were on the East Coast, they got to play live on the radio, on Brian Turner's show on WFMU, and this is the proof that it did indeed take place. Hard to imagine a band can kick up such a shitstorm with no crowd to react to, holed up in a little glass room, but Wilildlife bring it, hard. They open with “Metal”, from their full length, and manage to make it sound even more freaked out, the effected little girl vox have them channeling the Butthole Surfers even more than usual, the extended free-jam outro goes on for minutes, letting the band explore the outer reaches, before launching into another downtuned tribal workout. The sound is surprisingly clean, a few folks here like it even better than the record proper. Some of the songs are oldies, revamped and supercharged, some are altered versions of tracks from 6, those creepy high pitched vocals return throughout, and the band is on fire, the songs complex and convoluted but hooky and catchy as fuck, folks who bought the full length will for sure dig this. And if you've yet to discover the mysteries of Wildildlife, this is as good a place to start as any… Plus there's a pretty funny interview with the trio at the end...

That review makes the point, but we'll reiterate: Wildildlife are a super rad live experience. And we wouldn't want you to miss 'em (like we did their show last week at The Stork in Oakland, whoops).

Even more new arrivals

FYI, here's some neat stuff that's showed up here since we did our list on Friday:
An Albatross "The An Albatross Family Album" (Eyeball Records) cd $14.98
The Blithe Sons "The Great Orthochromatic Wheel" (Family Vineyard) lp $14.98
Darkestra "The Great Silk Road" (Paragon Records) cd $12.98
Frightened Rabbit "Liver! Lung! Fr!" (Fat Cat) cd ep $10.98
Gnaw Their Tongues "For All Slaves A Song Of False Hope" (Burning World) cd ep $13.98
Grails "Doomdayer's Holiday" (Temporary Residence Ltd.) lp $16.98 now on vinyl!
Hammers Of Misfortune "Fields / Church Of Broken Glass" (Profound Lore) 2cd $14.98
Kemialliset Ystavat / Sunroof! "split" (Fat Cat) lp $13.98
Of Montreal "Skeletal Lamping" (Polyvinyl) cd $15.98
V/A "Eccentric Soul: The Young Disciples" cd (Numero Group) cd $16.98
Woven Hand "Ten Stones" (Sounds Familyre) lp $13.98 now on vinyl!

Saturday, October 18, 2008

New Arrivals list #303

Obligatory blog post to alert you to something you hopefully already know: our new list went out last night... at like almost 4am... so this morning really. We're a little sleepy now. Please give it a gander here. Thanks!

Record Of The Week:
Aidan Baker & Tim Hecker "Fantasma Parastasie" (Alien8 Recordings) cd/lp $15.98/$22.00
The work of two of our favorite artists, it's even more awesome than we were expecting... a breathtaking exploration of both distortion and dreaminess. Wow.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Tomorrow's T-shirt, today

That's our very grim new t-shirt design that we'll have for sale on our website tomorrow, when we send out our New Arrivals list #303. The awesome art is by killustrator Justin Bartlett. It's the first in a "Special Limited Artists Edition" series of shirts we've got planned...


Ripley and Rich, the organizers of last Saturday's Frisco Freakout event, report that the one-day festival (which featured such bands as Earthless, Crystal Antlers, Wooden Shjips, and Ascended Master, among many others) was a rousing success, raising more than $2500 to benefit San Francisco's wonderful Creativity Explored nonprofit arts center for the developmentally disabled.
Right on! Looking forward to next year's Freakout...

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Rodriguez coming to SF

The Light In The Attic label, who just did a long overdue, deluxe domestic reissue of the awesome 1970 fuzz-soul-psych record "Cold Fact" by Detroit urban poet Rodriguez, just passed along this exciting bit of news - Rodriguez is hitting the road, and will be playing in San Francisco next month. Here's the details:

(((folkYEAH!))) presents...

Great American Music Hall, Sunday, November 23, 2008
Doors at 7:00 Show at 8:00

RODRIGUEZ performing songs from his LOST CLASSIC LP "Cold Fact"

With THE ENTRANCE BAND (co-headlining),
Sleepy Sun, and the Matt Baldwin Electric Band
plus DJ sets

info: &
advance tix:

Should be cool!

Friday, October 10, 2008

Don't forget, Frisco Freakout TOMORROW

Freakout, Frisco! Click poster art above for more info.

Random review of the day

For some reason, AQ staffers Jon and Antaeus (in particular) have been playing the heck out of this double cd in the shop lately. I guess they just discovered it or something. I just know, I'll go up front to see what craziness is on the store stereo, and it's so often this, originally reviewed by us on AQ New Arrivals list #232 back in 2005:

Todd Tamanend Clark "Nova Psychedelia (1975-1985)" (Anopheles) 2cd $22.00
In a word: WEIRD. Man, listening to this we veered from thinking it was the best thing ever, to totally painful, and back again. The truth of course lies somewhere in between (and in each of us as individuals). But it's hard not to be intrigued by this, anyway... This Todd Tamanend Clark guy was (is) a psychedelic, avantgarde rock n' roller who toiled in obscurity for many many years though clearly he should at the very least have a cult following. Thankfully the diligent Anopheles label has put together this chronological collection of a large part of Mr. Clark's out-there output, and more folks will have a chance to appreciate what a few lucky collectors (and Mr. Clark's friends) must have been amazed and amused by for years! He's a bit of a Roky Erickson-like figure, though fortunately not so tragic. Inspired by the comic books and sci-films of his childhood (he was born in 1952), Pennsylvanian part-American Indian Todd Tamanend Clark's musical career was perhaps destined for weirdness. Especially after seeing Monkee Mickey Dolenz playing a Moog on TV in 1968, the same year the United States Of America LP came out, both of which were life-changing musical experiences for Clark... his love of '60s garage psych (borne out by covers of the Electric Prunes and Paul Revere & The Raiders found here) warped into a realm of DIY electronics. Thus the list of synths and effects used on this 2cd set is a long one!! Yup, heavy doses of spacey synth and distorted garagey punk riffery (a '60s-ish Lightning Bolt meets Sun Ra??) are the norm here throughout Clark's varied output, which includes lengthy psychedelic epics, weird experiments in murky electronics, earnest songsmithery, and brash rockers. There's an atonal droning "outsider art" quality to a lot of this that will make and/or break it for most folks. The vocals are the toughest part... an over the top, slurred mix of Jim Morrison and Jandek, perhaps? All the weird poetry he's spouting sure goes with the freaky music even though you'll probably have no idea what's he on about. And with all the prog twists and haunted house synth noises going we're sure it makes perfect sense somehow. The earlier stuff at the beginning of the first disc is heavy on the primitive electronics (best example: the overwhelming 13 minute opening soundscape "March Of The Legion") and druggy vocal delivery, while later in the two-disc set, when we enter the '80s, the songs get more "pop" Clark's mind anyway. Things have tightened up a bit, though that doesn't preclude the appearance of a 14 minute track ("The Grim Rider") nor a fucked up, computerized version of the "Star Spangled Banner"! And the use of new wave '80s technology only makes things kitschier. If you dug the Happy Dragon-Band and Zolar X reissues, you might find this stuff to tickle the same fancies. All the tracks are taken from Clark's various ultra-rare, self-released LPs and 7"s spanning the years 1975-1985, including all the material from such albums as New Gods: Aardvark Thru Zymurgy, We're Not Safe!, and Into The Vision, released under various names (The Eyes, Todd Clark Group, The Stars). He didn't do all of this alone, y'know. Over the course of these 33 tracks (150 minutes of music!!) you'll hear contributions from many of Clark's friends, and family too. In fact, a few famous names appear, with one track featuring the voice of William S. Burroughs and on others, instruments played by Cheetah Chrome of the Dead Boys and Pere Ubu's Allen Ravenstine! With typical Anopheles throughness, this comes with a 20 page booklet stuffed with biographical information, photos, equipment lists, musician credits, and liner notes, including track-by-track comments from Clark himself. Not everyone's gonna need/want all 150 minutes of this, to be honest. Could have been a short, more bearable "best of". But then again, WE want to hear it all. So maybe you do too. And you can always make your own best of after you've listened to the whole crazy shebang. We'll end this review the way it began, with a word it seems most AQ customers respond to well: WEIRD.

Look it up on our website if you'd like to hear the sound samples...

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Between-lists new arrivals roundup

Some of the cool new items we've received this week - but by no means all of 'em:

The Alps "III" (Type) cd $15.98
Aidan Baker & Tim Hecker "Fantasma Parastasie" (Alien8) cd $14.98
Black To Comm "Fractal Hair Geometry" (Dekorder) cd/lp $16.98/$16.98
Loren Chasse & Michael Northam "The Otolith" (The Helen Scarsdale Agency) cd $14.98
Ensemble Economique "At The Foot Of Nameless Roads" (Digitalis) cd $12.98
The (Fallen) Black Deer "Requiem (Latitudes 0:15)" (Latitudes/Southern) cd $13.98
Jolie Holland "The Living And The Dead" (Anti-) cd $15.98
Machinefabriek "Dauw" (Dekorder) cd $16.98
Menace Ruine "The Die Is Cast" (Alien8) cd $15.98
Miss Lana Rebel "All I Need" (Wantage) lp $12.98
Moha! "One-Way Ticket To Candyland" (Rune Grammofon) cd $17.98
Daniel Padden "Pause For The Jet" (Dekorder) cd/lp $16.98/$14.98
Pedal "s/t" (Staubgold) cd $17.98
Steve Roden "Slow Moving Boat" (In Between Noise) 3"cd $7.98
Rusted Shut "Hot Sex EP" (Dull Knife) 12" $14.98
Uton "Straight Edge XXS" (Dekorder) lp $16.98
Uton "We're Only In It For The Spirit" (Digitalis) cd $12.98
v/a "1970's Algerian Proto-Rai Underground" (Sublime Frequencies) lp $25.00
White Magic "New Egypt (Latitudes 0:13)" (Latitudes/Southern) cdep $13.98
Zebulon Pike "Intransience" (Unfortunate Music) cd $11.98

Look out for reviews of (hopefully, most of) this stuff on our next list, #303. And of course, if you want to come in and buy any of these items now, by all means do so. Likewise, mailorder customers feel free to email and ask for any of these now. Thanks!

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Malleus in SF

Our friend Urlo from the Italian psychedelic art collective Malleus - who we know best in the form of their sonic incarnation, those very, very heavy, AQ fave space metallers, UFOmammut - emailed to let us know that he and other representatives of the Malleus Rock Art Lab (they do a lot of way cool silkscreened rock poster art) would be visiting San Francisco real soon. They have a few art show / book signing type events planned. Here are the dates:

Oct 10, 2008
Artrock Gallery
893 Folsom Street

October 11, 2008
10am - 5pm
TRPS Festival of Posters
Hall of Flowers
Golden Gate Park

October 16, 2008
book release / signing
Green Apple Books
506 Clement Street
7pm - until late
book release celebration and art show
right down the street at the 540 Club

They're on a "USA Tour", actually, so if you live in Seattle, Denver or LA they'll be coming through your towns too. See their website for details.

NYC's Orphan at Donuts

Locals who picked up the debut LP from Orphan we reviewed recently might be interested to know that they're coming to town soon, playing at the Knockout next Monday night, October 13th. Late Young is also on the bill. It's a Donuts Party if that means anything to you. Here's our review of Orphan's album, "Aborted By Birth":
Armed with drums and (ultra distorted) bass only, this heavy, hellbound girl-boy two-piece from Brooklyn crashes and bashes though ten trashed tracks of roughhewn rumble, making quite a crazed art-metal-noise racket. The drummer (girl, Speck Brown) pounds the skins with brutal abandon. Meanwhile the bassist (boy, Brendan Majewski) sings, in the most vicious nasty shriek he can muster, which is indeed brutal too, all the while ripping out the distorted riffage - which can get kinda catchy, on such negative creep cuts as "Love Is For The Birds". Elsewhere they lay waste to such troubling topics as "Penis Farm", "Swan Blood", and "Jane Fonda". Titling their album Aborted By Birth may be intended to draw comparisons to death metallers Cannibal Corpse, if only to stress their metallic bona fides, since otherwise they probably get a lot of Lightning Bolt references, due to the bass-drums duo setup. Naturally, godheadSilo, Jucifer, and Israel's Barbara would be other good comparisons. Released on evil white vinyl only, limited to 666 numbered copies (isn't that convenient?). We have but a handful.

And here's the flyer for the show:

Monday, October 6, 2008

Sir Richard Bishop instore Oct. 26th!

We're extremely pleased to announce that Sir Richard Bishop, of Sun City Girls fame, will be playing here at AQ later this month! Sunday, October 26th at 4pm. He'll be doing an acoustic guitar set, in advance of his show the next night at the Cafe du Nord (where he'll be playing electric). So mark your calendars, you don't want to miss this!

In our reviews of SRB's recent solo outings for the Locust, Latitudes and Drag City labels, we've said things like:
Killer alchemical guitar compositions
... Bishop's frame of reference varies wildly from flamenco to the early jazz stylings of Django Reinhardt ... Combines Indian mysticism with old-world European romantic beauty ... Very much in the spirit of the current American Primitive / neo Appalachia sound, exploring similar territory as Jack Rose, Stephen Basho-Jungans, Charlie Schmidt and of course John Fahey ... Moody and emotional, dark and dense, dreamy and lyrical ... Just Bishop and a steel string guitar unfurling dense tangles of intricate fingerpicking, as well as slow contemplative melodies, all rich with Spanish flavor ... Occasionally Bishop goes for an Eastern raga like vibe instead, and ends up sounding closer to UK guitarist James Blackshaw or Rose at his most drone-y ... So so lovely indeed!

Sunday, October 5, 2008

New Arrivals list #302

You probably know this already, but we emailed/uploaded another New Arrivals list on Friday, like we do every two weeks. Please check it out on our website here.

Record Of The Week:
Group Inerane "Guitars From Agadez" (Sublime Frequencies) cd $16.98
Brain melting, heart wrenching, psychedelic "Tureg Guitar" jams.

Friday, October 3, 2008

Frisco Freakout update

We mentioned the upcoming Oct. 11th "Frisco Freakout" all-day psych rock festival on our last New Arrivals list, but ought to blog about it too. It's gonna be far out, we're really looking forward to it. Here's the latest on this exciting event that we're pleased to help sponsor...

PRESS RELEASE: October 1, 2008
Dear friends,
It's getting close to October 11 ...
We are proud to announce the addition of three more groups to the lineup for the Frisco Freakout: MYTHICAL BEAST (from Kansas City), ART LESSING and the FLOWER VATO, and SEQUIN TRAILS ...

Good trips, organic eats, and the best in California psychedelic rock:

Crystal Antlers
Wooden Shjips
The Bad Trips
Sleepy Sun
Assemble Head in Sunburst Sound
Greg Ashley
Ascended Master
Art Lessing and the Flower Vato
Mythical Beast
Sequin Trails

to benefit the artists of Creativity Explored

October 11, 2008,
Thee Parkside, 1600 17th Street @ Wisconsin
San Francisco, CA

Tickets are $15, on sale now, online here!

Contact: Ripley Johnson / Richard B. Simon

our proud sponsors:
Arthur Magazine
Aquarius Records
Ruby Tubes

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Preorders, please: Jewelled Antler Library

Folks have already started asking us to reserve copies of the upcoming Jewelled Antler Library boxset for them, which is actually a pretty good idea, since this thing's going to be limited to 1,000 only and we'll probably just get one chance to order any in.
So, we figured we should post some info here about it. Due out on November 18th, via Porter Records, it's a deluxe 4cd boxset compiling the tracks from all dozen of the long-out-of-print 3" cd-rs that Jewelled Antler released five years ago in their "Library" series. Artists include: Thuja, Hala Strana, Kemialliset Ystavat, The Ivytree, Dead Raven Choir, Fursaxa, Claypipe, Muons, Uton, and more... you can look 'em up on our site and read our reviews of the original 3"s, if you like. These discs will include some extra bonus tracks, too: an unreleased 13th library installment by Ways Of God To Man and 12 new field recordings by Loren Chasse. All in all, 4 1/2 hours of nature-friendly, experimental dronefolkfreakpsych from California, New Zealand, and Finland. It should sell for around $60, not really sure yet exactly. Cheaper than trying to pick up the individual cd-rs on eBay, in any case!
If you'd like to preorder a copy from us, please email our mailorder dep't. ( and let us know. We'll put your name down for it and notify you when they show up. Thanks!

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

The proverbial hotcakes are back too

Just in today, a Mississippi Records (and Change) restock:

Mysterious Thai LP (Mississippi/Exiled) lp $10.98
Irma Thomas "The New Orleans Series" (Change) lp $11.98
v/a "I Don't Feel At Home In This World Anymore 1927-1948" (Mississippi) lp $10.98

They probably won't be here for long, though...

Dead Channels is baaaaack

AQ is co-sponsoring this rad film fest:

2nd Annual
October 2 - 10, 2008

Last year's fest featured tons of new and vintage sci-fi, fantasy, horror, action, exploitation and beyond including the U.S. premiere of UWE BOLL's Postal, TAKESHI MIIKE's Big Bang Love: Juvenile A, and a live soundtrack performed by Spoonbender 1.1.1 (featuring our own Cup!) to DAVID CRONENBERG's Crimes Of The Future.

This year, don't miss the U.S. theatrical premiere of Puffball (an adaptation of FAY WELDON's book of the same title) by NICHOLAS ROEG (The Man Who Fell To Earth, Performance, Don't Look Now, Walkabout, and more), Surveillance by JENNIFER CHAMBERS LYNCH (aka DAVID LYNCH's daughter), the amazing sexy, psychedelic thriller The 10th Victim from 1965 starring URSULA ANDRESS and MARCELLO MASTROIANNI, an early '70s super-computer flick Colossus: The Forbin Project, a rare early '70s ultra-violent western from Spain titled Cut-throats Nine (La Decima Vittima), and more!
Psst, share your popcorn with Andee at the 10pm showing of Tokyo Gore Police on Saturday!
Oh, and the opening night party will feature Toomorrow, a 1970 musical confectionery starring OLIVIA NEWTON JOHN (no, it's definitely no Xanadu or Grease, but it's pretty remarkable unto itself). Plus Cup and her IAS comrade Dustin will be DJing the closing festivities!
Don't miss!

The fest will be taking place at The Vortex Room (SF), The Roxie Film Center (SF), and Parkway Speakasy (Oakland).

For a complete schedule and more info...

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

French connection

Y'know the speedfreek French acidpunkpsych act Gunslingers, whose fuzz-filled album No More Invention we highlighted on list #299? Well we just learned something interesting about 'em we didn't know before. The rhythm section of Gunslingers is the same Antoine and Matthieu who play in two other AQ faves: krauty post rock/metal act Aluk Todolo and black metallers Diamatregon! Thanks to J.R. from the Public Guilt label for passing along that info, we hadn't made the connection. Now the question is, are those guys in any other bands, 'cause if so, we need to hear 'em!

Monday, September 29, 2008

Kerry and Christine have blogs too

We're sure that AQ mailorder customers who've been with us for more than a year or two, must have fond memories of our former mailorder staffers Kerry and Christine. Apparently K&C's current jobs elsewhere allow them a lot of free time, 'cause Kerry emailed - in response to our blog - to say "OMG! I started a blog too!" which you can find at She also teamed up with Christine to start yet another blog, The URLs for both should give you a fairly accurate idea as to the respective contents of these blogs. Neither have much to do with music (well, the radduderadkidradlady blog does sometimes, sorta) but should provide some, uh, amusement nonetheless, so we thought we should pass these links along! Check 'em out.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Heads up, heavy vinyl junkies

Thought you might want to know we got in stock today, these two lp releases:
Harvey Milk "Courtesy And Good Will Toward Men" (Chunklet / Reproductive Records) 2lp $30.00
SUNNO))) "Domkirke (Live In Bergen Cathedral 031807)" (Southern Lord) 2lp $17.98
Both of 'em on many, many grams of precious vinyl, housed in fairly substantial, handsome packaging. And limited too, of course. We'll be reviewing these on list #302 next week, if we don't run out.
But if you're reading this, and you want a copy of either or both, just hop on down to the store or email us to grab you one for mailorder.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

White Hills instore! also, Krautrock videofest...

If you didn't already read about it on our email list, we'd like to remind locals to come down to Aquarius tomorrow, Wednesday Sept. 24th, to see AQ fave spacerockers White Hills play an instore show here, 6pm.

Also, they'll be performing at a Klaus To The Edge projekted krautrock video extravaganza at the Knockout, Monday the 29th... here's the flyer:

Monday, September 22, 2008

Neon gone

neonYou know the blue neon sign hanging in our window, that says "Aquarius Records"? Well it's not there anymore. Sadly, it bit the dust sometime after we closed on Friday. When Andee came to work on Saturday morning, he found that the wires holding it up had snapped or something, and it had crashed to the floor, smashing into a million tiny bits. R.I.P. neon sign, we'll miss you.
Thankfully, though, this happened in the middle of the night, and not during they day when the store was full of people!
So, anyone know where we can get a deal on getting a new neon sign made?

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Death Magnetic, distilled

As you may be aware, there's a new Metallica album out. We just 'reviewed' it on list #301. We mentioned that it's hard to be objective about that band, after everything they've put their original fans through over the years. But parts of it were definitely pretty cool, harking back to the Metallica of old. We have proof of that for those of you who might have doubts about the new album.

It's a 98% percent instrumental edit of Death Magnetic "that distills the album into one decent 14 minute song". Check this "Death Magnedit" out here.

And there's also this, a 33rpm rip of the 45rpm vinyl version of "Ride The Lightning"!

Thanks to AQ pal Jace for directing our attention to these.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

New Arrivals list #301

Might as well make a habit of mentioning that another edition of our New Arrivals list has been uploaded to our website. You'll find #301 right here. Of course, you probably also got our New Arrivals #301 email telling you the same thing, especially since how else did you know we had a blog? 'Cause we only just publicly announced its existence in the intro to #301.

Records Of The Week:
Ishikawa Akira & Count Buffalo "Uganda" (Tiliqua) cd $28.00 
Mind blowing reissue of this '70 Japanese psychedelic artifact. Intense African drumming meets jazz meets acid rock proto metal prog.
Darsombra "Eternal Jewel" (Public Guilt) cd $12.98 
Second disc of brooding kraut flecked, spaced out blackened ambience, definitely for fans of Expo '70 and other dark droners...
Woven Hand "Ten Stones" (Sounds Familyre) cd $14.98 
Latest disc of apocalyptic bluegrass gothic folk from David Eugene Edwards, formerly of 16 Horsepower. The heaviest WH yet!

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Return of the KFJC Penny Pitch! This Saturday at AQ!!

We're excited to play host to this fundraising event for one of our favorite community-supported radio stations, KFJC (98.7 fm). It's this weekend, Saturday afternoon, September 20th from 1 o'clock to 6 o'clock pm here at Aquarius Records (that's 1055 Valencia St. in San Francisco, but you know that).

We had a lot of fun with the KFJC folks when they did this here last year, looking forward to it again! Glad to help them out with this kickoff to their fundraising season.

There'll be a bunch of KFJC DJs here, broadcasting live from a tent set up on our sidewalk. Maybe a guest AQ DJ too. And snacks. Please come on by and check it out, it'll be fun. Or at least tune in, if you can't come out - KFJC can be heard over the internet, via the links on this page of their website.

Here's the schedule for the live KFJC DJs:
1pm Morris Minor
2pm Cadillac Margarita
3pm Belladonna
4pm Maybelline
5pm Capt. Jack

Monday, September 15, 2008

Hey Ma, look we're in the New York Times!

A bunch of folks pointed out to us that we got a nice mention in Sunday's NYT travel section, as part of a piece entitled "36 Hours In San Francisco", focused on the Mission District.

"A friendly sanctuary for music lovers" they said. And we were like, oh yeah, we remember a photographer coming by to take some pictures a little while ago, that's right! Pretty cool, we're given props alongside other favorite Mission places to go like Creativity Explored, Weird Fish and Dolores Park. Check out the whole article (with slide show) online at the link above.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

New in stock

Well we got a heck of a lot of cool new stuff in this week, we're not even gonna try to list much of it here quite yet. But if you're a Deathspell Omega fan, you might want to stop in. Also if you're looking for the new Blue Sabbath Black Cheer LP.
We're still working on a way to list new stuff in stock on this blog, with a button that will allow you to actually order it via our website, with a "buy it now" button... should be some progress on that next week, with luck.

Leaky leak

It got just a little bit damp here Friday night. A plumber had been installing a new bathtub in the apartment upstairs during the day, and late that evening, Jon (working at the front counter) detected, with his keen senses, a drip drip drip coming from our mailorder room... thankfully, the leak was a minor one, and no equipment or merchandise was damaged. Longtime local customers have probably been here when we've had similar (but worse) emergencies in the past, with our racks moved around and plastic sheeting over everything. It's an old building! But fortunately our landlord is super conscientious & responsive about stuff like this, and had the plumber back down here first thing in the morning Saturday to fix things up. Fingers crossed that's the last of this particular leak.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Rock n' Roll All Night, tonight

Y'know how I (Allan) have been on a KISS kick lately, reviewing a bunch of old Kiss cd reissues for the AQ website? Well, you can imagine how stoked I am to be about to see Destroyer (not the Dan Bejar band, which is what SF Gate mistakenly thinks, but the local Kiss tribute band) at Annie's Social Club tonight. And it's sort of friend rock too, 'cause an old pre-AQ co-worker of mine is Ace Frehley in this band. Should be rad.

This just in

One of today's new arrivals:
DARSOMBRA "Eternal Jewel" (Public Guilt) cd 12.98
Should be reviewed on list #301!

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

New internet is go

All right! Today is our first day with our new, faster cable internet connection turned on here at the store. We flipped the switch and, lo and behold, it worked. Our local network didn't get screwed up, our emails seem to come and go as they should, yay! Supposedly it's 16x faster than our old internet service. Dunno about 16x exactly, but it IS faster. Of course, our old DSL seemed like dial-up. So... we can get more done, more quickly. Or that's the idea. And 'cause we're so excited about our new internet, we're also gearing up on some of the internet-related projects we've been planning for a while - like this here blog. The idea is, soon we'll be posting something every day or two. Right now we're just trying to get used to the concept. And it's a bit weird, posting to this blog now, 'cause we haven't actually told anybody about it (yet) so that there's very little chance that anyone (right now as I post this) is gonna be reading it. Still, it's worth doing it now, as an exercise!
The other internet related projects? Perhaps an AQ podcast, and some (gradual) graphical redesign of our website, among other things.... we'll keep you posted.

Monday, August 4, 2008

In today...

So, the idea is that every day when new, exciting arrivals show up, we can mention 'em here in advance of our usual bi-weekly New Arrivals update. That way, folks who read the blog can get a jump on everyone else, without waiting for our reviews... We'll see if this is a good idea or not. In any event, today we got the Ghast/Yoga split cd, and Seepia "Portal" on vinyl.

Friday, August 1, 2008

We're blogging now...

Greetings! Thought we'd start an AQ-records blog, or even a couple of 'em (Andee's also doing one all himself at As if doing our email update/website bizness every two weeks wasn't enough! Now you can check here daily (ha) and see what's happenin'. Hopefully. If we stay on it that is. We'll post about cool stuff that just came in, what to look for on the next list, things going on in the store and in the Mission, whatever. We'll try to figure out a way to let you click and order stuff we might mention here, but of course (until that happens, and after) you should just go to our regular website,, to order and read about all the crazy music we're selling! So, this is in 'beta' stage as it were, we'll experiment with the blogging and see how it goes. Thanks for reading! (And commenting, if/when you do). -Allan/AQ