Purchase log, 2019-10-22

[Ali Wong - Baby Cobra]

I catalog my music purchases on Collectorz and Discogs, but they don’t give me a sense of change over time. So I’m noting them here weekly as well.

Catalog

CD
  • Ali Wong, Baby Cobra
  • Betty Davis, Betty Davis
  • Boston, Boston (Remastered)
  • Cutting Crew, Broadcast
  • Drake, Views
  • Electric Light Orchestra, ELO’s Greatest Hits
  • Heartless Bastards, The Mountain
  • Olivia Newton-John, Physical
  • Olomana, Like a Seabird in the Wind
  • Radiohead, Amnesiac
  • Rowlf the Dog, Ol’ Brown Ears Is Back
  • Sunny Day Real Estate, Diary
  • The Gaslight Anthem, The ’59 Sound
  • The Sunday Manoa, Best of the Sunday Manoa, Vol. 1
Vinyl
  • The Dead Milkmen, Metaphysical Graffiti

Reissues

CD
  • Jason Isbell and 400 Unit, Jason Isbell and 400 Unit
Vinyl
  • Geinoh Yamashirogumi, Ecophony Gaia

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Purchase log, 2019-10-15

[Kim Gordon - No Home Record]

I catalog my music purchases on Collectorz and Discogs, but they don’t give me a sense of change over time. So I’m noting them here weekly as well.

New releases

CD
  • Kim Gordon, No Home Record

Catalog

CD
  • Annie Lennox, The Annie Lennox Collection
  • Anton Reicha, Sämtliche Bläserquintette Vol. 1 (Albert Schweitzer Quintet)
  • Anton Reicha, Sämtliche Bläserquintette Vol. 2 (Albert Schweitzer Quintet)
  • BABYMETAL, BABYMETAL
  • Cocteau Twins, Victorialand
  • Cursive, The Ugly Organ
  • John Coltrane, Ascension
  • Kahimi Karie, Kahimi Kaire
  • Kahimi Kaire, K.K.K.K.K.
  • My Life with the Thrill Kill Kult, Confessions of a Knife
  • Patsy Cline, 12 Greatest Hits
  • Thelonious Monk Quartet, Monk’s Dream
  • Various Artists, The Romantics: A Windham Hill Sampler
Vinyl
  • Janelle Monáe, Electric Lady

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Purchase log, 2019-10-08

[Cocco - Star Shank]

I catalog my music purchases on Collectorz and Discogs, but they don’t give me a sense of change over time. So I’m noting them here weekly as well.

New releases

CD
  • Cocco, Star Shank
Vinyl
  • Sturgill Simpson, Sound & Fury

Catalog

CD
  • Balligomingo, Beneath the Surface
  • Butthole Surfers, Electriclarryland
  • David Del Tredici, In Memory of a Summer Day
  • Iron Maiden, Seventh Son of a Seventh Son
  • Iron Maiden, The Number of the Beast
  • Justin Timberlake, The 20 / 20 Experience
  • Meredith Monk, Volcano Songs
  • New Order, Movement
  • Ride, Going Blank Again
  • Saint Etienne, Foxbase Alpha
  • Suzanne Vega, Solitude Standing
  • The Dead Milkmen, Soul Rotation
  • The Ocean Blue, Beneath the Rhythm and Sound
  • The Ocean Blue, Cerulean
  • The Roots, The Tipping Point
  • Thelonious Monk, Underground
Vinyl
  • Kraftwerk, Trans-Europe Express

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Purchase log, 2019-10-01

[The Replacements - Dead Man's Pop]

I catalog my music purchases on Collectorz and Discogs, but they don’t give me a sense of change over time. So I’m noting them here weekly as well.

New releases

CD
  • Sturgill Simpson, Sound and Fury

Catalog

CD
  • Aretha Franklin, Young, Gifted and Black
  • Dolly Parton, Jolene / My Tennessee Mountain Home
  • Dr. Dre, 2001
  • Dusty Springfield, Dusty in Memphis
  • Elvis Costello and the Attractions, Imperial Bedroom
  • Goldfrapp, Black Cherry
  • Gossip, Music for Men
  • Prince, Dirty Mind
  • Sharon Jones and the Dap-Kings, 100 Days, 100 Nights
  • Scissor Sisters, Night Work
  • The B-52’s, Funplex
  • Tracey Ullman, You Broke My Heart in 17 Places

Reissues

CD
  • The Replacements, Dead Man’s Pop
Vinyl
  • Pinback, Summer in Abaddon

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Purchase log picks, September 2019

[The Bad Rackets - Full On Blown Apart]

Infomatik, Technologies

This album is one of those extremely rare, regional finds that will either be selling for $0.50 at a thrift store or $30 on Discogs.

Kanye West, 808s & Heartbreak

When this album was first released, my record store co-workers liked it enough to recommend it. Kanye had already gone headlong into celebrity insufferability by then, and I passed. It was that endorsement that prompted me to pick this album up at the thrift store. What I like best is the lack of raps, and thus, the lack of posturing. It’s also restrained, something refreshingly unbecoming of an artist with the size of Kanye’s ego.

The Bad Rackets, Full On Blown Apart

This album is the intersection of garage rock and punk that my Waterloo Records co-workers would play to death. It’s been about 15 years since, so I’m not so severe in my reaction to this kind of music. I’ve also met the band’s drummer, and he’s hotter than a straight guy has any business being.

Art of Noise, Re-works of Art of Noise

At the time of its release, I wasn’t interested in live tracks, which is half of this compilation EP. I was wrong to be so dismissive. Art of Noise had to adapt to a live setting, giving these tracks new facets the studio versions don’t capture. “Hammersmith to Tokyo and Back” is worth the price of the EP alone.

R.E.M., Monster

I skipped this album when it was released. All the pre-release press described Monster in terms that didn’t hold much appeal to me. I didn’t share everyone’s breathless acclaim for Automatic for the People, so I approached Monster with a level of skepticism that stopped me from listening to the album for 25 years. How foolish.

The Cult, Sonic Temple

I read about this album in a lot of magazines back in high school, but I never made the plunge. I like how it’s not quite heavy metal.

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Looking ahead, October-November 2019

[Shiina Ringo - Newton no Ringo]

Kim Gordon, No Home Record, Oct. 11

Kim Gordon’s music career spans numerous decades, but only now does she release a solo album. Of course I’m curious.

The Police, Every Move You Make: The Studio Recordings, Nov. 8

I bought a used copy of Message in a Box, so I really don’t need this set. I want it, but I don’t need it.

Shiina Ringo, Newton no Ringo ~Hajimete no Best Ban~, Nov. 13

Many popular Japanese artists release multiple career-spanning retrospectives. Shiina Ringo releases her first after 20 years.

Sam Amidon, Fatal Flower Garden EP, Nov. 15

Billed as “A Tribute to Harry Smith,” this 4-track, 7-inch EP features Amidon performing songs from Smith’s Anthology of American Folk Music.

Clannad, In a Lifetime Anthology, March 13, 2020

No details have emerged yet of this career-spanning compilation, but the Brennans embark on a farewell tour to support it. They will be missed.

Vinyl

Everything But the Girl, Walking Wounded, Nov. 8

Yes, please. Thank you.

Shiina Ringo, Sandokushi, Dec. 11

Rule of thumb for Shiina Ringo vinyl releases: place a pre-order because they will be gone.

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Purchase log, 2019-09-24

[Torche - Harmonicraft]

I catalog my music purchases on Collectorz and Discogs, but they don’t give me a sense of change over time. So I’m noting them here weekly as well.

Catalog

CD
  • Brandi Carlile, By the Way I Forgive You
  • Interpol, Turn on the Bright Lights
  • Kraftwerk, Trans-Europe Express
  • Madonna, Remixed and Revisited
  • Men at Work, Business As Usual
  • Modern English, After the Snow
  • R.E.M.: Essential R.E.M.: In the Attic
  • Simon and Garfunkel, Bridge Over Troubled Waters
  • Soundgarden, Screaming Life / Fopp
  • Torche, Harmonicraft
  • Torche, Meanderthal

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Purchase log, 2019-09-17

[Art of Noise - Re-works of Art of Noise]

I catalog my music purchases on Collectorz and Discogs, but they don’t give me a sense of change over time. So I’m noting them here weekly as well.

New releases

CD
  • Sassyblack, Ancient Mahogany Gold

Vinyl

  • Torche, Admission

Catalog

CD
  • Art of Noise, Re-Works of Art of Noise
  • Charlie Robison / Jack Ingram / Bruce Robison, Unleashed Live
  • Common, Like Water for Chocolate
  • Grizzly Bear, Yellow House
  • Kanye West, My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy
  • The Cult, Sonic Temple
Vinyl
  • Johnny Cash, American Recordings
  • Rick Springfield, Tao
  • The Xx, Xx

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Purchase log, 2019-09-10

[Infomatik - Technologies]

I catalog my music purchases on Collectorz and Discogs, but they don’t give me a sense of change over time. So I’m noting them here weekly as well.

New releases

CD
  • Kronos Quartet, Terry Riley: Sun Rings

Catalog

CD
  • Carole King, Tapestry (Remastered)
  • Infomatik, Technologies
  • Jack Ingram, Live at Adairs
  • John Wesley Harding, The Confessions of St. Ace
  • Kanye West, 808s & Heartbreak
  • R.E.M., Monster
  • The Bad Rackets, Full On Blown Apart
  • The Manhattan Transfer, Brasil
  • The Manhattan Transfer, The Best of the Manhattan Transfer

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Thrift store find: Infomatik, Identify

[Infomatik - Identities]

Sometimes, you have to judge an album by its cover.

In the case of Identities by Infomatik, it’s an intricate jewel case wired with electronics.

I ran across a copy of the EP during a volunteer shift at Lifelong Thrift Store. The case was falling apart because the electronics had been dislodged. At first, I thought someone was crazy enough to ditch a copy of Tristan Perich’s 1-Bit Symphony, but a closer examination of the album credits ruled that out.

Then I had to wonder — what kind of band would go this amount of effort to craft such complex packaging?

I reached a dead end when I attempted to visit the band’s web site, which had long been surrendered to domain squatters. The Wayback Machine gives some hint of who this band was. A Google search on the band’s requires the use of quotations, otherwise Google will assume you want to search “informatik” instead of “infomatik”. (The best terms to use: “infomatik” band.)

In the mid-2000s, the band got a lot of good press in Seattle, eventually releasing a full-length album, Technologies. Obviously, Infomatik is no longer, the band’s members scattered to the wind and any evidence of their existence relegated to difficult web searches and a scant entry in Discogs.

It’s a pity.

Infomatik threw its hat into the ring of ’80s revivalism so prevalent at the time. The synths are grimy, the live beats as danceable as anything found in a machine, and the vocals a satisfying balance of deadpan and angst. They may descend from Killing Joke and Wire, but they understood what made those bands good.

I was so thoroughly impressed with Identify that I tracked down Technologies. All the tracks from Identify found their way to Technologies, but it’s none the worse for it.

In the mid-’00s, the infrastructure to get music online was in its infancy, so none of these releases are available through any of the usual digital services. As of this writing, a single copy each of Identify and Technologies are for sale on Discogs in the $30 range.

With my volunteer discount, I took Identify home for $0.83. I snagged the last remaining copy of Technologies on Amazon Marketplace for less than $2. The shipping cost more than the disc.

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