Tag Archives: Cocteau Twins

Review: Beneath The Serene – Mercury’s Antennae

MercurysAntennaeBeneathTheSereneMercury’s Antennae is not only an intriguing name for a band, it also represents a band of intriguing possibilities. Mercury’s Antennae is made up of three members, all of whom are closely tied to the Darkwave movement. The angelic voice of Dru Allen, who originally sang with two legendary ethereal bands, Mirabilis, and This Ascension, highlight the vocal ranges on Mercury’s Antennae’s latest album, Beneath The Serene, released by noted ethereal and ambient label, Projekt Records. She’s assisted by Erick R. Scheid (Translucia), who supplies the band’s heavy dose of guitars and electric ambient flows, along with newcomer, Cindy Coulter, previously of This Ascension, and, Faith and The Muse, who completes the trio with her bass guitar.

Mercury’s Antennae uses a blend of ambient, heavenly vocals, and lush ethereal groundwork on their latest album, Beneath The Serene, to create a captivating selection of seven hypnotic tracks. Among them, you will hear enticing tunes that recall the mystery of Lycia, and the lush sound clouds of The Cocteau Twins. The opening track, “Le Spectre Concubine” exhibits an audio display of an unsettling ambient composition designed to open your mind to the possibilities of what Beneath The Serene can accomplish. After this short introduction, “Ivy Tree Shore” begins with a Lycia-fueled soundscape that is bewitched by the voice of Dru Allen. In fact, the influence of Lycia is felt throughout in a complimentary way. There are three extraordinary sound tracks (“Le Spectre Concubine”, “Silivren”, “Migration”). All seven tracks have directions that give Mercury’s Antennae a sense of beauty and rapture, a sense of deep purpose and depth. and, if you’ll forgive the usage, an absorbent serenity that the title promises.

You’re not going to come away untouched.

MercurysAntennae_2016w

Aside from the digital download issue, Beneath The Serene is only being released in a Limited Edition of 300 CD copies.

 

 

Favorite Songs That Get Constant Replay

Music is certainly a subjective experience. What works for me likely won’t work for you (besides shared appreciation selections). But I’m always interested in what others find wonderful.

A few days ago, I got caught up in what I feel are songs that somehow transcend the usual “I like that” assignation. The songs that I listened to were tunes that come back far more frequently than many others. In fact, I son’t usually have to cycle back to them, they just seem to be always there.

And so, I thought I’d ask what some of your most important songs are. For example, I have “Heart Of Gold” by Neil Young always finding its way into my mind at least once or twice a week. Another is “So Far Away” by Carole King (who also has “Sweet Seasons”, “Jazzman”, Been To Canaan”, and “It’s Too Late” in that cranial jukebox of mine). There’s “Stone Cold Sober” by Crawler, “Ballad Of The Beacon” by Wishbone Ash, “Mainstreet” by Bob Seger, “Closer To Home” by Grand Funk Railroad, “Both Sides Now” by Joni Mitchell (who also has a few more that show up frequently). There are more, of course. Which is why I’m not asking for a Top Ten list. but rather the first batch that easily rolls from your memory.

While I’m at it, it’s cool to see that Night Moves by Bob Seger will be arriving on 180g vinyl LP reissue on June 16. PLUS, there are four Joy Division titles coming to LP, and two Cocteau Twins LPs. The Joy Division sets (Substance – 1988, Still – 1981, 2LP sets planned for July 17, and Unknown Pleasures – 1979, Closer – 1980, 1LP sets planned for June 30), all coming from Rhino! The Cocteau Twins LPs are coming from 4AD on July 17, and includes The Pink Opaque – 1985, and Tiny Dynamine (EP) – 1985 with Echoes In A Shallow Bay (EP) – 1985 together in one set. (I HAD to get something new coming out in here!)

Bob Seger Night Moves LP

TAPSheet: Release Notes – 06/12/2014 (US Report)

Fuel Records have two title on the calendar for July 29. Those CD releases will be Jesus Is The Answer from Dorothy Norwood, and Para Siempre En Mi Corazón by Freddy Fender.

Captured Tracks has the new album from Naomi Punk on the release calendar on CD, DD, and LP. Their new 10-track album, Television Man, is slated for August 5.

NaomiPunk Television Man

Merge Records have a CD, DD, LP release of Frozen Letter by Spider Bags planned for August 5.

Roadrunner Records have saVages, the new album from Theory Of A Deadman, on the calendar for July 29.  The new album is scheduled for CD (PA and Edited), and vinyl LP (with download rights).

Mute Records will release The Grand Tour from gorgeous sound-crafters, Land Observations, planning releases on CD, DD, and vinyl LP on July 29.

The two previously announced Cocteau Twins 180g LP remasters scheduled by 4AD will find their way to a US release (YAY!). The albums, Blue Bell Knoll, and Heaven Or Las Vegas are slated for July 15 at a very reasonable price point.

I’m very pleased to hear that Mozart’s Sister (Caila Thompson-Hannant) will be release her first full-length album, Being, by the excellent Asthmatic Kitty label (home to Lily & Madeleine). If you have heard her 4-track EP, Hello, then you already know what I mean. Being is slated for August 5.

MozartsSisterBeing

UDR will release Aftershock – Tour Edition from Motörhead on CD planning for July 29.

Plain Records will reissue Let It Come Down, the 2001 Spiritualized album, on a  Limited Edition 2CD set and a vinyl LP. These are scheduled for July 15.

Caroline Records will reissue The Power And The Glory by Gentle Giant in a new 5.1 Surround DVD-Audio or Blu-ray-Audio remix package, slated for US release on July 22. The packages will include a CD as well.

Gentle Giant Power And TheGlory

Legacy Recordings will reissue That’s the Way It Is (1970) by Elvis Presley in a HUGE 8CD/2DVD Box planned for August 5.

Elvis Presley Thats The Way it Is

Varese Sarabande will prepare for the US release (FINALLY!!!) of Snowpiercer by issuing the Motion Picture Score by Marco Beltrami on July 22.

Astralwerks have an electronic release by Porter Robinson called Worlds. Worlds is scheduled for August 12. Worlds will be made available on limited edition translucent vinyl, black vinyl, CD, and DD. All autographed copies of the title have been sold out.

WorldsPorterRobinson

Dick Hayd Records will release a Slash title on September 16 called World On Fire. The set will feature Myles Kennedy & The Conspirators.

Dead Oceans Records will have a new album from psychedelic band, Bear in Heaven called Time Is Over One Day Old scheduled for CD, DD, and LP release on August 5.

Jenny Lewis (Rilo Kiley) will release her first solo effort in six years since Acid Tongue (2008) on July 29. The 10-track album is slated for CD, DD, and vinyl LP via Warner Brothers Records. The new album is being called The Voyager.

Jenny The Voyager

Eagle Rock Entertainment will release a Justin Hayward live set called Spirits…Live, Live at the Buckhead Theatre, Atlanta, on August 19.

Mercury Records will release John Mellencamp Performs Trouble No More Live At Town Hall, on July 8, CD, DD, and vinyl LP.

Culture Factory will release Beauty And the Beat, and Vacation, both by The Go-Gos on limited edition replica vinyl LP CDs, on September 2.

Republic Records will release They Want My Soul by Spoon on August 5.

SpoonTheyWantMySoul

Cocteau Twins Classics, Blue Bell Knoll, Heaven Or Las Vegas, To Be Reissued On Remastered 180g Vinyl

Cocteau Twins, a Scottish band from the tail end of the 70s, with their highly original form of music that included the elusive soprano-voice of Elizabeth Fraser, was, in essence, a short-lived phenomena. It doesn’t matter whether you were a fan of the band or not, the fact remains that over their 18-year period, they only produced nine studio albums, one of them a collaboration with Harold Budd. More surprising is the sudden disappearance.

Cocteau Twins

They released their final album, the extraordinary Milk and Kisses in 1996. By then, the relationship between Robin Guthrie and Elizabeth Fraser had strained, which led to the aborted recording of  their “ninth” (not counting the Budd effort) album, and the complete break-up of Cocteau Twins. And while there were hints of reformation, we may never hear them again, nor their likes.

Cocteau Twins left behind a grand trail of excellent albums beginning with Garlands in 1982. As far as I’m concerned, there were no bad Cocteau Twins albums. One of the albums that was favored by the band was Blue Bell Knoll released in 1988 via the legendary UK label, 4AD (Capitol in the US). Another classic would be Heaven Or Las Vegas, issued in 1999.

CocteauTwins BlueBellKnoll

On July 14, 4AD will repress Blue Bell Knoll, and Heaven Or Las Vegas, both on 180g BLACK vinyl, and are being cut from NEW 96/24 HD masters. What’s NOT to love here.

CocteauTwins Heaven Or Las Vegas

What’s best is that the label is not charging an arm and a leg for them (a nasty trait usually perpetuated on the US vinyl buying public by domestic labels). Each album will sell for slightly over $20, making them excellent bargains.

Thank you, 4AD!

I hate frustrating some of you who may be fans but are NOT vinyl collectors with this post, but this is too good not to mention.