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Showing posts from October, 2019

Gene Clark "Back Street Mirror" (2018 Record Store Day EP)

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On Record Store Day 2018, a limited edition EP was issued containing six recently unearthed tracks by Gene Clark. This 12-inch, 45 rpm EP, titled Back Street Mirror, was pressed in 180g vinyl, and was limited to 1,500 numbered copies. As of this writing, 18 months after its RSD release, Back Street Mirror is still not available digitally.

The six tracks on the Back Street Mirror EP were Clark compositions recorded before the 1967 release of Gene Clark with the Gosdin Brothers, the short but solid debut solo album from the late co-founding member of the Byrds.

The three tracks on the first side of the EP were recorded during the Russell-Masekela Sessions in January 1967, so called because they were arranged by Leon Russell and South African jazz trumpeter Hugh Masekela. The title track was intended to be the A-side of a non-album single, but it was rejected by Columbia, and instead became the basis for a 1967 recording by actor David Hemmings. Hemmings’ version used the same recorde…

The Clouds "Tranquil" (1987)

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“Twee pop” is a subgenre of indie pop which typically affects an exaggerated degree of sweetness and innocence, usually in lo-fi fashion. Often marked by jangly guitar sounds and vocals that are either childishly high-pitched or nasal to the point of being foghorn-like, twee pop usually explores the sadness of young unrequited love. The early twee pop scene of the late-‘80’s and early-‘90’s primarily originated in the post-Smiths U.K. The 1986 cassette titled C86, a various-artists indie-pop compilation issued in the U.K. by NME magazine, is widely regarded as twee pop’s defining starting point.

Some of the best-known artists who have worn the twee pop tag – whether they wanted to or not – have hailed from Scotland, including Belle & Sebastian, the Pastels, and Camera Obscura. (Some would also classify Teenage Fanclub as a twee pop band, although I would not). There was once a band called the Clouds who resided in that same country during the C86 era, but they released only one …

Pearl Jam "MTV Unplugged (3/16/92)" (2019 Record Store Day Black Friday LP)

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Pearl Jam were the official Ambassadors of Record Store Day in 2019, and for the other Record Store Day the same year – namely Black Friday – the Seattle grunge band is issuing the LP MTV Unplugged, featuring the 7-song acoustic set which the band performed in March 1992 for that program. This will be the first time this performance will be available on vinyl, and it will be limited to 13,000 copies (which is actually a surprisingly high number for a Record Store Day exclusive print run).

Six of the seven songs were drawn from the band’s 1991 mega-platinum debut album Ten, which was still ascending toward the peak of its popularity at the time of the show’s taping. The other song, “State Of Love And Trust”, turned up later in 1992 on the Singles movie soundtrack. A DVD of the Unplugged show was previously included as a bonus item in the 2009 Deluxe Edition of Ten (Legacy 88697398492).

The opening song “Oceans” (which was excluded from the original TV broadcast) lends itself well to…