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.