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Rock - Released October 22, 2021 | Ryko - Rhino

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Funny thing about The Replacements; after every album, a certain percentage of their fans could be counted on to complain that they'd changed for the worse, betraying the true spirit heard on their previous album. Their debut Sorry Ma, Forgot to Take Out the Trash reissued here in a 100 track, 5-disc version that includes many unreleased demos, outtakes, alternate takes and a complete live show, is where that dynamic began. This is as close to a punk rock album as the band ever made which means those who despise the later, poppier, work, like the penultimate Don't Tell a Soul, for example, and feel the real Replacements died when Bob Stinson left the band, consider Sorry Ma to be their grail. And yet, despite the band's rhythm section of drummer Chris Mars and 14-year-old bassist Tommy Stinson being supremely tight, and Bob Stinson's schizo-guitar thunder—the band's original foundation—casting chords and notes in every direction, Sorry Ma is also where singer/guitarist Paul Westerberg's songs and evolving vocals first become the star. From the opening rush of "Takin' a Ride," Sorry Ma, recorded between 1980-81 at rudimentary Blackberry Way studios in Minneapolis for Peter Jesperson's Twin/Tone label, is riffy and raw. Based around Westerberg's guitar artifacts that emphasize volume and abandon, tunes like "Don't Ask Why," and "I'm in Trouble," are pure blasts of punk-leaning hard rock energy suffused with the band's insouciance and the irrepressible pugnacity they'd built up over years in their basement rehearsal space. The spark of the Replacements' bright future to come is also present, particularly in their first less-than-headlong-rush near-ballad, "Johnny's Gonna Die." Written for one of their earliest heroes Johnny Thunders—who was indeed doomed—this is where Westerberg dips his toe into pop songwriting for the first time. Thunders, who Westerberg has admitted was an early model for his songwriting, is alluded to in numerous musical gestures on the album like the grand reprise ending of "Rattlesnake." In addition to a band coming into its own musically, Sorry Ma is also audible evidence of the determination among these four dogged, obsessive underdogs to succeed. In the liner notes by co-producer and journalist Bob Mehr, who won a Grammy for his notes for 2019's Dead Man's Pop, an earlier entry in this series of Replacements reissues, Tommy Stinson pegs the band's state of mind: "We basically became the gang of hoodlums that didn't have anything else to do. We weren't thieves and hoodlums per se. But we had a hoodlum mentality in terms of, let's go into the basement and make a bunch of racket." For Westerberg, however, there was a lot more to it than just creating a din: "…it took me a long time to find guys who had no other fucking options in life. I needed desperation. 'Cause that's where I was coming from." Sonically, the original album is heard here in a cleaner, more dynamically rich new remaster that still can't completely rescue the canned sound of "I Bought a Headache," which was recorded during a 1980 tryout concert for Twin/Tone co-owner, Paul Stark. The collection of demos on the second disc is unusually telling as Westerberg works on song ideas, gaining confidence, getting better even in shards that never made a Replacements album like the "She's Firm," "Get on the Stick" and "Raised in the City." There are also flashes of the band's infamous sense of humor like the shave-and-a-haircut coda to the demo of "I Hate Music." These early recordings even include a taste of the hours the band spent rehearsing in the basement of the Stinson house as Westerberg flips into lounge singer mode in "Basement Jam." Confirmation that this band was growing in material and professionalism is provided by a muscular but surprisingly disciplined nearly 30-song live show taken from a radio broadcast recorded in January 1981 at Minneapolis club, The 7th Street Entry as the band was finishing Sorry Ma. Although they're famed for their unhinged live shows where the music often changed on the fly, this concert is audible evidence of how serious they could be when it counted. Even the covers of Slade's "My Town" and The Kinks' "All Day and All of the Night" are restrained. Throughout this pivotal, revealing package there's a sense of a band discovering itself, testing its powers, finding a method to the madness. As Chris Mars marvels in the liner notes: "We'd just kinda listen back and say, "Hey, that was great. How did we do that?" © Robert Baird/Qobuz
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Rock - Released October 15, 2021 | Ryko - Rhino

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Rock - Released September 24, 2021 | Ryko - Rhino

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Rock - Released September 3, 2021 | Ryko - Rhino

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Rock - Released August 13, 2021 | Ryko - Rhino

On their third release, 1995's Yes, Morphine shied away from the more accessible direction they laid down on 1994's superb Cure for Pain, going for a more challenging (but just as rewarding) direction. While the singles/videos "Honey White" and "Super Sex" did contain a pop edge (and were the album's best), other tracks, such as "The Jury" and "Sharks" pushed the envelope by containing lyrics that sound as if they're stream of consciousness. Like its predecessor, it's a highly consistent album -- even the lesser-known tracks are integral to the album's overall makeup. "Scratch," "All Your Way," "I Had My Chance," "Free Love," and "Gone for Good" all sound like the observations of a broken-down man, steeped in despair. But the mood lightens up on such selections as "Radar" and the title track, plus the aforementioned singles. With nearly all alt-rock bands sounding identical and bashing angrily away at their instruments in 1995, Morphine proved to be in a league all by themselves. Yes is perhaps just a shade less spectacular than Cure for Pain, but certainly not by much. © Greg Prato /TiVo
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Rock - Released August 11, 2021 | Ryko - Rhino

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Alternative & Indie - Released June 29, 2018 | Ryko - Rhino

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Deliciously strange and eccentric, the Flaming Lips are one of these bands from the 80s alternative rock scene that have survived remarkably well. Their psychedelic and quirky tendencies are as surprising as they are fascinating. With these madmen from Oklahoma, everything takes a different shape. A sort of mix between exaggerated distortions and sped-up headbanging, or even role-play in a world ruled by hallucinogenic mushrooms. That’s the kind of atmosphere these rock geniuses have maintained from 1983 to this day, and that caught the eye of label Rhino Records. For the first time, the entirety of the Flaming Lips recordings from 1986 to 1990 for the label Restless Records are being released in a remastered version (by Wayne Coyne, Michael Ivins and David Fridmann, the band’s long-time producer) and gathered on six albums under the title Seeing The Unseeable. A huge collection that includes four of their best albums: Hear It Is, Oh My Gawd, Telepathic Surgery and In a Priest Driven Ambulance. And as a bonus, an album filled with rare gems: The Mushroom Tapes. © Anna Coluthe/Qobuz
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Alternative & Indie - Released June 29, 2018 | Ryko - Rhino

Deliciously strange and eccentric, the Flaming Lips are one of these bands from the 80s alternative rock scene that have survived remarkably well. Their psychedelic and quirky tendencies are as surprising as they are fascinating. With these madmen from Oklahoma, everything takes a different shape. A sort of mix between exaggerated distortions and sped-up headbanging, or even role-play in a world ruled by hallucinogenic mushrooms. That’s the kind of atmosphere these rock geniuses have maintained from 1983 to this day, and that caught the eye of label Rhino Records. For the first time, the entirety of the Flaming Lips recordings from 1986 to 1990 for the label Restless Records are being released in a remastered version (by Wayne Coyne, Michael Ivins and David Fridmann, the band’s long-time producer) and gathered on six albums under the title Seeing The Unseeable. A huge collection that includes four of their best albums: Hear It Is, Oh My Gawd, Telepathic Surgery and In a Priest Driven Ambulance. And as a bonus, an album filled with rare gems: The Mushroom Tapes. © Anna Coluthe/Qobuz
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Alternative & Indie - Released April 20, 2018 | Ryko - Rhino

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The loony Flaming Lips are diving back into their old material and, with it, releasing a remastered collage titled Scratching The Door, a sort of family album from their early days. It features recordings from 1985 to 1989, as they were still in their original formation: Wayne Coyne on the guitar, his brother on vocals, Michael Ivins on the bass and Dave Kotska on drums. The opus focuses on their debut and features their first self-produced EP, demos and a completely destroy version of the Who’s Anyway, Anywho, Anywhere. Now fifty something, they were just 20 years old back then and their already battered sound − a sort of raw post-punk carried by gritty and scruffy guitars, thunderous bass (Flaming Lips Theme Song), heightened by harmonica digressions (Handsome Johnny) − more so than their psychedelic convulsions was already spreading through Oklahoma City. In June 2018, they will follow up this album with Seeing The Unseeable: The Complete Studio Recordings Of The Flaming Lips 1986-1990: a compilation of their first albums, of their Restless Records period, before their move to Warner. Fantastic news for their early fans. © Charlotte Saintoin/Qobuz
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Alternative & Indie - Released April 20, 2018 | Ryko - Rhino

The loony Flaming Lips are diving back into their old material and, with it, releasing a remastered collage titled Scratching The Door, a sort of family album from their early days. It features recordings from 1985 to 1989, as they were still in their original formation: Wayne Coyne on the guitar, his brother on vocals, Michael Ivins on the bass and Dave Kotska on drums. The opus focuses on their debut and features their first self-produced EP, demos and a completely destroy version of the Who’s Anyway, Anywho, Anywhere. Now fifty something, they were just 20 years old back then and their already battered sound − a sort of raw post-punk carried by gritty and scruffy guitars, thunderous bass (Flaming Lips Theme Song), heightened by harmonica digressions (Handsome Johnny) − more so than their psychedelic convulsions was already spreading through Oklahoma City. In June 2018, they will follow up this album with Seeing The Unseeable: The Complete Studio Recordings Of The Flaming Lips 1986-1990: a compilation of their first albums, of their Restless Records period, before their move to Warner. Fantastic news for their early fans. © Charlotte Saintoin/Qobuz
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Rock - Released July 14, 2017 | Ryko - Rhino

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Rock - Released May 26, 2015 | Ryko - Rhino

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Rock - Released May 26, 2014 | Ryko - Rhino

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Dance - Released December 10, 2013 | Ryko - Rhino

This Norwegian trio follows up its Special EP with this full-length effort, a lightweight but winning mixture of lounge-y ambience, electronic pop, and funky chill-out acid jazz. Its centerpiece is the insanely catchy and fun "Think Twice," which features vocalist Christine Sandtorv and some great cheesy clavinet work by someone billed as the Batmans. But most of the rest of the album is just as good: "Special Morning" is a chilled but faintly sexy instrumental in which faraway whistling weaves around a mellow synth line and softly percolating drums; "Casino" is a greasy retro-'60s romp (this time with vocals from Leslie Ahern); "You Never Come Closer" sounds, believe it or not, like a cross between Sade and the Doobie Brothers. Word has it that their live show involves multiple drummers and "elements of danger." Neither is easy to imagine while listening to this very pleasant album, but it does kind of make you wonder.... © Rick Anderson /TiVo
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Dance - Released December 10, 2013 | Ryko - Rhino

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Funk - Released December 3, 2013 | Ryko - Rhino

This live double set overcomes some of the tentative feeling of Collins' 1994 debut on Rykodisc and builds some of the thump back into the funk, with Collins and band (which includes longtime P-Funk supporters like keyboardist Bernie Worrell, vocalist Mudbone Cooper and drummer Frankie "Kash" Waddy) putting serious energy into an 18-number set recorded in Tokyo, Japan. Curiously enough, Bootsy trades off bass duties with guitarist Flip Cornett, so some cuts feature Bootsy playing rhythm guitar rather than his famous Space Bass -- the latter not always being needed on some of the songs. The playing is tight and cheerful, with lots of call-and-response going on with the audience. Fun was obviously had by all concerned, and that projects nicely on this double set, making it an entertaining listen even though the majority of the numbers will be more than a little familiar to longtime passengers on the Mothership. © Steven McDonald /TiVo
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Rock - Released December 2, 2013 | Ryko - Rhino

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Punk / New Wave - Released November 19, 2013 | Ryko - Rhino

With the Killer Klowns EP restoring the band to more of an active duty, the Dickies fully got their act back together with Second Coming, amusing angel/sainthood cover and all. The core Stan Lee/Leonard Graves Phillips partnership remains the same, while the core band, including bassist Lorenzo Buhne, guitarist Enoch Hain, and drummer Clifford Martinez, backs up everything with the expected élan. Things aren't quite at the same all-out just-insane-enough level of the original band in terms of performance -- volumes are sometimes lower, arrangement a touch less hyperactive -- but in terms of good spirit and good fun, Second Coming is an entertaining romp. Two covers continue the tradition of out-of-nowhere "you're covering that?" reactions -- while "Hair" and "Town Without Pity" aren't given the sheer high-speed/slam-dance treatment of times past, it's nice to see the group still tweaking the nose of what's hip and acceptable. The latter in particular is an amusing effort -- straightforward enough, but hearing Phillips instead of Gene Pitney's wailing makes for an interesting change! As for the originals, mostly from the pen of Phillips, things are off-kilter enough, as always, to make for a good time. "Magoomba" reappears from Killer Klowns, guest vocals from Phillips' mom and all, while "Monster Island" celebrates the legendary locale from the Godzilla series with surfy vibes. "Cross-Eyed Tammy" slots into the vein of sweet and silly power pop à la "Pretty Please Me" and "Out of Sight"; "Caligula" reads like the world's weirdest Iron Maiden parody ever (and why not?); and "Booby Trap" makes for a new way to look at goth girls. Even "Goin' Homo," which on the face of it would seem insulting, is good-natured silliness at quick speed -- "Why did god make men with nipples?" indeed. © Ned Raggett /TiVo
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Pop - Released May 21, 2013 | Ryko - Rhino

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Pop - Released May 21, 2013 | Ryko - Rhino