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Editor's note: We have activated the Neumu 44.1 kHz Archive. Use the link at the bottom of this list to access hundreds of Neumu reviews.

+ Donato Wharton - Body Isolations
+ Svalastog - Woodwork
+ Tim Hecker - Harmony In Ultraviolet
+ Rosy Parlane - Jessamine
+ Jarvis Cocker - The Jarvis Cocker Record
+ Múm - Peel Session
+ Deloris - Ten Lives
+ Minimum Chips - Lady Grey
+ Badly Drawn Boy - Born In The U.K.
+ The Hold Steady - Boys And Girls Together
+ The Blood Brothers - Young Machetes
+ The Places - Songs For Creeps
+ Camille - Le Fil
+ Wolf Eyes - Human Animal
+ Christina Carter - Electrice
+ The Decemberists - The Crane Wife
+ Junior Boys - So This Is Goodbye
+ Various Artists - Musics In The Margin
+ Rafael Toral - Space
+ Bob Dylan - Modern Times
+ Excepter - Alternation
+ Chris Thile - How To Grow A Woman From The Ground
+ Brad Mehldau - Live in Japan
+ M Ward - Post-War
+ Various Artists - Touch 25
+ The Mountain Goats - Get Lonely
+ The White Birch - Come Up For Air
+ Camera Obscura - Let's Get Out of This Country
+ Coachwhips - Double Death
+ Various Artists - Tibetan And Bhutanese Instrumental And Folk Music, Volume 2
+ Giuseppe Ielasi - Giuseppe Ielasi
+ Cex - Actual Fucking
+ Sufjan Stevens - The Avalanche
+ Leafcutter John - The Forest And The Sea
+ Carla Bozulich - Evangelista
+ Barbara Morgenstern - The Grass Is Always Greener
+ Robin Guthrie - Continental
+ Peaches - Impeach My Bush
+ Oakley Hall - Second Guessing
+ Klee - Honeysuckle
+ The Court & Spark - Hearts
+ TV On The Radio - Return To Cookie Mountain
+ Awesome Color - Awesome Color
+ Jenny Wilson - Love And Youth
+ Asobi Seksu - Citrus
+ Marsen Jules - Les Fleurs
+ The Moore Brothers - Murdered By The Moore Brothers
+ Regina Spektor - Begin To Hope
+ The 1900s - Plume Delivery EP
+ Alejandro Escovedo - The Boxing Mirror
+ Function - The Secret Miracle Fountain
+ Sonic Youth - Rather Ripped
+ Loscil - Plume
+ Boris - Pink
+ Deadboy And The Elephantmen - We Are Night Sky
+ Glissandro 70 - Glissandro 70
+ Calexico - Garden Ruin (Review #2)
+ Calexico - Garden Ruin (Review #1)
+ The Flaming Lips - At War With The Mystics
+ The Glass Family - Sleep Inside This Wheel
+ Various Artists - Songs For Sixty Five Roses
+ The Fiery Furnaces - Bitter Tea
+ Motorpsycho - Black Hole/Blank Canvas
+ The Red Krayola - Introduction
+ Metal Hearts - Socialize
+ American Princes - Less And Less
+ Sondre Lerche And The Faces Down Quartet - Duper Sessions
+ Supersilent - 7
+ Band Of Horses - Everything All The Time
+ Dudley Perkins - Expressions
+ Growing - Color Wheel
+ Red Carpet - The Noise Of Red Carpet
+ The Essex Green - Cannibal Sea
+ Espers - II
+ Wilderness - Vessel States

44.1 kHz Archive

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You Don't Need Darkness To Do What You Think Is Right

Scottish indie-pop icons The Pastels started their Geographic label essentially for the purpose of introducing Maher Shalal Hash Baz's music to the non-Japanese world-at-large. Everything that's come since has sort of fallen in behind Tori Kudo's manic ad-hoc love-in mess-music ensemble. If Geographic has an aesthetic imprint, it's a favoring of ramshackle, sentimental, homegrown, handmade songs assembled in "collage" fashion. This is often the product of a group in which assembled ranks surround a compositional figurehead, like Kudo in Maher Shalal Hash Baz, Sushil K. Dade in Future Pilot AKA, Tom Crossley in International Airport, or Bill Wells with his Trio or Octet. It's "humanism," in a sense, the musical result of such a nefarious phrase sounding rather like melancholy, oft-kilter pop-music. You Don't Need Darkness to Do What You Think Is Right, a 17-song compile subtitled "New Geographic Music," was initially commissioned as an overview/introduction to the label by Cornelius's wonderful Trattoria Sound label in Japan. But, rather than just pick from their discography, the Pastels folk instead took to the front foot and used the licensing fee to fund new recordings by the constituents of their extended Geographic family. The compilation commences with The Pastels themselves covering Sly Stone in the most knit-jumper-clad fashion, seemingly influenced by the rainy-day style they've helped cultivate on their label. Familiar friends International Airport, the Bill Wells Octet, Future Pilot AKA, Appendix Out, Telstar Ponies, and the Org-axis of Maher Shalal Hash Baz and acid-folk evangelists Nagisa Ni Te all turn up on the compile. But the quality of this record is that the smaller artists and known names brought on board fit in with the aesthetic perfectly. Kevin Shields makes a graceful turn on closing, taking pieces from The Pastels' intro and stringing them out amidst wrung-out guitar and crackling static. Linda Reid invites her brothers William and Jim along on her frail and breathy soft-pop number "Farewell, Farewell," sounding much more like the Gentle Waves than the Mary Chain. And Monika sista Barbara Morgenstern fronts with another cold-and-crackly exercise in electro-distress/churning-organ/whispery-singing, responding to the label's request to "have a 'pop moment'" with quite a chipper tune, "Kleiner Ausschnitt." As far as the unknowns go, Plinth, Directorsound, and Pedro all make a case to have an eye kept on them in the future, favoring gentle, pastoral passages of hazy instrumentalism in which the men-as-islands behind the compositions forsake the cheap thrills of clicking their mouse and smacking their glitch up to carefully construct wobbling songs. Directorsound's Nick Palmer evokes heavy nostalgia with an interlude that sounds like it was rescued from some dusty 78.

by Anthony Carew

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