Sic Alps: "Glyphs"

If you've been reading Letters From A Tapehead long enough, you know that Sic Alps has been a point of coverage since before this band had any albums available on Amazon.  So, I can't but feel some pride in the fact that even Pitchfork has deemed the band worthy of notice, even if, in the words of Light from Repo Man, "I was into these dudes before anybody."  Seriously, I believe Sic Alps canceled out the legitimacy of the garage rock revival, simply because they were the most genuinely damaged band to revel in the genre's lack of fidelity, but not for the purposes of sounding vintage.  There was no gag or novelty to what this band did, and it's not as if they can be accused of riding Jack White's jock when so very few people even knew who they were.  But, they persisted and now Sic Alps seems to be enjoying some notoriety, which makes me very happy.

Anyway, this was my attempt at being self-congratulatory.  This rarely happens, so savor the moment.

Sic Alps are releasing a new self-titled LP on September 17th and "Glyphs" is its new single and video.  I think I've reviewed all of their long-players at this point, so if you're interested, peruse the links below.

Pleasures & Treasures (2006)
A Long Way Around to a Shortcut (compilation) & U.S. EZ (2008)
Napa Asylum (2011)

Info about the new release comes courtesy of Rarely Unable.


In their new fever-dream of a video, which premiered this week on, Sic Alps set up an audience of one, a jean jacket-clad scarecrow, while they “perform” for him. The performance includes instrument smashing, smoke bomb bashing, and other examples of entertainment, interspersed with flashes of romanticism. Their concert eventually ends and it’s time to send the rapt spectator home. The Alps won’t recycle a tired principle, though. Set fire to their instruments? F*ck that; they set fire to their audience.


We’re looking at another fresh dawn in the storied history of a band. But what really is the story anyway?

During Pavement’s “One More for the Money” tour of 2010, Sic Alps played some British gigs with them – it’s been written that during one long night in Brixton, Stephen Malkmus was heard uttering within shot of a microphone that Sic Alps would be one of the most important bands of the next ten years. Not that we’re inclined to disagree, but Malkmus is a habitual liar, so who knows how apocryphal one can really be about that.

All speculation aside, here are the facts as we know them: Sic Alps be the fifth album from Sic Alps, if you include the compilation album Long Way Around to a Shortcut, which we do. There’s been a number of singles and some splits and who knows, we may be looking at a second way around to a shortcut someday soon. First though, we deal with the cracking and recasting of the mould that is apparent when you start to hear the sounds of Sic Alps.

Where on previous recordings there was space and distance, this time, they have carved a fuller sound, fleshed out with instrumental textures and classic vocal melodies, expanding upon the playful experimentation for which they're known.

Sic Alps Tracklisting:
1. Glyphs
2. God Bless Her, I Miss Her
3. Lazee Son
4. Polka Vat
5. Wake Up, It’s Over II
6. Drink Up!
7. Thylacine Man
8. Moviehead
9. Rock Races
10. See You On The Slopes

Finally, stay in touch with Sic Alps Online:

Letters From A Tapehead


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