Monday, January 09, 2017

Buys & Receipt: Wire, Flying Lotus, Sun Ra

'Twas the season... 

Nocturnal Koreans

Caught Wire's Nocturnal Koreans mini-LP just before 2016 elapsed thanks to my wife who has, interestingly, managed to gift me one Wire album over the last (now) three Christmases.  I think I got the Document & Eyewitnesses compilation in 2014 and Wire's s/t LP last year.  I wouldn't call this a bad tradition.

While I really liked the title track when the album came out, I'll admit this isn't my favorite of the band's recent output.  I may need to give it a few more listens.  I would never accuse the band of phoning it in so to speak, but maybe plateauing a bit.  Either way, I'm always happy to be expanding my collection of Wire LPs.

Flying Lotus
You're Dead
Released: 10.6.14

You're Dead by Flying Lotus slipped by me in 2014 and has been on the "I'll get to it someday" wishlist for the past couple of years.  I should've jumped on this one sooner.

Myself a fan of 70s era jazz fusion and late 60s Impulse!, my appreciation and enjoyment of this album was immediate.  Taking full advantage of hip-hop's standing as a sample genre, its multiple frames of reference coalescing into a fascinating cross-section of sounds akin to Mahavishnu Orchestra, Return to Forever, and Alain Goraguer to name a few, Flying Lotus (a.k.a., Steven Ellison) impresses with some deep jazz arrangements that relate well to some of his more beat-related instrumentals.  You can probably credit this to the track sequencing.  There are moments when the album sounds more like a film score, some of the tracks segmented and short, but that doesn't detract overall from the complete package.  You're Dead is a hip-hop album for fusion heads.

And the physical presentation of the album is gorgeous, foil-stamped and heavily illustrated.

Sun Ra
The Definitive 45 Singles Collection, Vol. 1: 1952-1961
Strut Records
Released: 11.25.16

As I continue with my foolish and impossible quest to amass a complete library of Sun Ra's work, hearing news that a two-volume singles compilation would be released certainly sparked my interest.  Strut Records put out the first volume in late-November in both 3-LP or 3-CD sets and as a limited edition set of 10 45 singles.  I got the 3-LP set and it's been a lot of fun to absorb, though I have yet to listen to the whole set.  I need a solid block of uninterrupted time, which isn't always easy to come by. 

The second volume spans 1962-1991 and is scheduled to release mid-March.

Letters From A Tapehead

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