Friday, September 22, 2023

New music: Duran Duran, Firefall, The Foreign Films

Duran Duran is the focus of an essential new concert film available on DVD while Firefall and The Foreign Films are back with essential new albums.

Duran Duran
Title: A Hollywood High (Cherry Red Records)
You might like if you enjoy: Duran Duran, Roxy Music, Arcadia
Tell me more: A Hollywood High is a true celebration of modern British rock group Duran Duran's special relationship with Los Angeles. In addition to interviews with singer Simon Le Bon, keyboardist Nick Rhodes, bassist John Taylor, drummer Roger Taylor as well as unseen archival footage dating back to the early 1980s, the docu-concert film features a 12-song show filmed at The Aster in Los Angeles on March 17, 2022. Visually stunning (the location features the iconic Capitol Records Tower as a backdrop), the high-rise rooftop performance features 4K video and is enhanced by 5.1 and Dolby Atoms surround sound that fully capture the band at the height of their powers. The setlist includes a mix of Duran Duran's hits and shining new material. Among the many outstanding songs performed are the powerful opener "A View To A Kill," lovely "Come Undone," explosive "Pressure Off," a crowd pleasing cover of "White Lines," moving "Ordinary World" (the latter dedicated to the people of Ukraine) and festive closer "Hungry Like The Wolf." A Hollywood High is available on both Blu-ray and DVD. Information: 

Title: Friends & Family (Sunset Blvd Records)
You might like if you enjoy: The Doobie Brothers, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Firefall, Loggins & Messina, Poco
Tell me more: Because many of 1970s hitmaker Firefall's band members have also played with some of the most beloved artists of the 70s' and '80s  including The Byrds, Flying Burrito Brothers, Spirit, Heart, Dan Fogelberg and Gram Parsons  it's not surprising that the quintet's latest album Friends & Family is such a resounding success. The disc (due Sept. 22 via Sunset Blvd Records) showcases Firefall's solid ability to recapture the spirit and sound of the classic rock era that gave rise to their outfit and so many of their beloved contemporaries; Firefall offers up their own versions of 13 classic tracks originally recorded by others artists between the late 1960s and early '80s. Highlights include the mostly-faithful performance of the Doobie Brothers' "Long Train Running," harmonies-adorned take on Fogelberg's "Part of the Plan," inspired folk rock reading of the Marshall Tucker Band's "Can't You See," poignant version of Lynyrd Skynyrd's "Simple Man" (the latter bolstered by John Magnie's sublime accordion work) and delightfully driving version of Spirit's rocker "I Got a Line On You." They also rework Heart's 1985 rocker "What About Love" into a winning countrified version, while bringing a magic to versions of the Flying Burrito Brothers' soaring "Colorado" and Parson's rowdy country rocker "Ooh Las Vegas." Information:

The Foreign Films
Title: Magic Shadows (Kool Kat Musik)
You might like if you enjoy: The Three O'Clock, XTC, Jellyfish
Tell me more: In the official press notes for The Foreign Films' album Magic Shadows, band leader Bill Majoros notes "I love the idea of taking the listener on a musical adventure, creating a sonic and emotional experience...I think of music as a time machine  visiting the past, present and future." Indeed, Magic Shadows does transport the listener on a wide-ranging sonic journey. The songs here recall the past while also celebrating the here and now. The luxurious "Cinema Girl" draws favorable comparisons with top-flight Jellyfish while the propulsive "Perfect Future" exudes an urgency in tune with our troubled times. Other memorable tracks include the Baroque pop nugget "Sparks In The Dark (Merry-Go-Round)," dreamy "Midnight Movies" and "Lost In Time," and Beach Boys-minded "Daydream In The Sun." My favorite track is the shimmering "Rain Clouds," a swirling cut that blends '60s' psychedelic stylings with the sound of '80s Paisley Underground heroes The Three O'Clock in glorious fashion. Information:

Robert Kinsler

The Church release Deluxe Edition of "The Hypnogogue" + Companion on tour this fall!

Today marks the release of the deluxe edition of The Hypnogogue; get all the details on the new collection from The Church, including where you can catch the groundbreaking group on tour...Robert Kinsler

"There’s a warm intimacy to this trippy, low-key affair that invites you to trance out into contemplative bliss. Elements of the goth, new wave, and space rock worlds that intermingled when they started still coalesce here ('Antarctica' is a standout). Given the throwback vibes of so many modern tunes, The Hypnogogue works equally well as retro and timeless music." - A.V Club

"On The Hypnogogue, the quintet creates fluid moods, moving in idiosyncratic directions while maintaining the shadowy gaze that has defined The Church’s style." - American Songwriter

"The Church’s usual melodic, psychedelic sound takes a stark turn into a concept album about a sci-fi dystopia, perfectly suited for singer Steve Kilbey’s plaintive voice." -


 Release The Hypnogogue – Deluxe Edition 
with Six New Tracks Added to the Original Album

 Also Announce Brand New Companion CD
Eros Zeta and the Perfumed Guitars
 Available ONLY At the Merch Table on Tour

Kicks Off Fall North American Tour Sept. 28th

Photo credit: Hugh Stewart

SEPTEMBER 22, 2023 (Melbourne, AUS) – 
Some stories don’t quite have endings… Such is the case with THE CHURCH’s latest album THE HYPNOGOGUE which was originally released on February 24, 2023. A visionary album with a narrative thread - a first for the band who is entering their fifth decade of making music, The Hypnogogue’s retro-futuristic, dystopian narrative reads like a short story from visionary science fiction author Philip K. Dick (“A Scanner Darkly,” “Electric Dreams”), revolving around a fictional machine (the "Hypnogogue") that extracts music directly from subconscious dreams.

Now, as the band kicks off their second U.S. leg of their worldwide tour (tour dates below), the story of “The Hypnogogue” extends with a newly-released, expanded deluxe digital edition. With six added tracks, the deluxe package includes the recently released single and video “Realm of Minor Angels” which described as “hypnotic and ever-catchy” and bassist/vocalist/founder Steve Kilbey cites as “without doubt one of my favorite singles The Church has ever released.”
The Church "Realm of Minor Angels (Official Music Video)"
Going beyond the initial storyline of The Hypnogogue, The Church will be releasing Eros Zeta and the Perfumed Guitars, a companion CD that includes 15 brand new tracks, serving as a continuation of the storyline. The limited-edition CD will only be available at merch tables on the tour.

The original dream-pulling storyline,” as Kilbey explains, “follows Eros Zeta, the biggest rock star of 2054, who has traveled from his home in Antarctica (against his manager’s advice) to use the Hypnogogue to help him revive his flagging fortunes. In the midst of the toxic process, he also falls in love with Sun Kim and it all ends tragically (of course, as these things often do).”

In the progression of the 15 tracks, the story of Eros Zeta and the Perfumed Guitars expands the mythos, as explained by Kilbey:
“Eros Zeta and the Perfumed Guitars were formed in 2048 in Antarctic City in Antarctica. They had many hits including ‘Realm of Minor Angels’ and ‘Sublimated in Song’ and in all released six collections of music. They toured the postwar world incessantly during the early 2050s and were capable on a good night of selling out concerts in most countries that still had gigs. The band were troubled with personnel and substance problems culminating in Eros Zeta's addiction to Sky and his subsequent inability to write new songs.

In 2054, he journeyed to Korea where he used the Hypnogogue to create new music. After the disastrous effects these songs created, he died in a traffic accident whilst on his way to the airport to return home. The songs were thereafter prohibited in most places. In recognition of his services to Antarctican music, a statue was built to honor him in the Australian Quarter of Antarctic city. The band continued on without him but to little success which led to them disbanding in 2057.”
The Hypnogogue resulted in arguably some of the best reviews in the band’s 40-year history. A.V. Club lauded, “There’s a warm intimacy to this trippy, low-key affair that invites you to trance out into contemplative bliss. Elements of the goth, new wave, and space rock worlds that intermingled when they started still coalesce here… The Hypnogogue works equally well as retro and timeless music.” Brooklyn Vegan adds, “Forty some years into their existence, these Aussie psych legends are making some of the most vital music of their careers.” Under the Radar assures, “The Hypnogogue reaffirms why this band have been held in high esteem for so long.”

Starting out in 1980, The Church have continued to expand their highly cinematic and atmospheric blend of indie rock, shimmering post-punk, icy dreampop and psychedelic post-rock without retreading their steps. Their expansive music career yielded a string of hit songs including “Under the Milky Way,” “Reptile,” “The Unguarded Moment” and “Almost With You” amongst others and their equally stellar live shows have been deemed “spectacular” by MAGNET Magazine, citing their “dreamy psychedelia that will daub your evening with shades of paisley.”

The 2022 epic five-piece line-up is bassist, vocalist and founder Steve Kilbey; with long-time collaborator Tim Powles, drummer and producer across 17 albums since '94; guitarist Ian Haug,formerly of Australian rock icons Powderfinger, who joined the band in 2013 and Jeffrey Cain (Remy Zero), touring multi-instrumentalist who is now a full-time member of The Church since the departure of Peter Koppes in early 2020. The band have also recruited Ashley Naylor, long-time member of Paul Kelly’s touring band and one of Australia’s finest and most respected guitarists (Even, The Grapes, The Stems).

The Hypnogogue (Deluxe) is released now and available at

Sep 28Seattle, WANeptune Theater
Sep 30San Francisco, CAHardly Strictly Bluegrass 2023
Oct 1Mill Valley, CASweetwater Music Hall
Oct 2Ventura, CAVentura Music Hall
Oct 4Pomona, CAThe Glass House
Oct 5Las Vegas, NVBrooklyn Bowl
Oct 6Chandler, AZThe Showroom at Wild Horse Pass
Oct 7Santa Fe, NMThe Lesnic
Oct 9Omaha, NEThe Waiting Room
Oct 11Ferndale, MIThe Magic Bag
Oct 12State College, PAState Theater
Oct 13Covington, KYMadison Theatre
Oct 14Atlanta, GAVariety Playhouse
Oct 15Birmingham, ALSaturn
Oct 17Ponte Vedra, FLPonte Vedra Concert Hall
Oct 18Orlando, FLThe Abbey
Oct 19Clearwater, FLCapitol Theatre
Oct 20Fort Lauderdale, FLCulture Room
Oct 21Fort Lauderdale, FLCulture Room
Oct 23Pensacola, FLVinyl Music Room
Oct 24New Orleans, LAHouse of Blues
Oct 26Austin, TXLevitation Festival
Oct 27Houston, TXHeights Theater
Oct 28Dallas, TXKessler Theater
Oct 29Oklahoma City, OKTower Theater
Oct 31Evanston, ILSPACE
Nov 1Evanston, ILSPACE
The Hypnogogue - Deluxe Edition

  1. Ascendence
  2. C'est La Vie
  3. I Think I Knew
  4. Flickering Lights
  5. The Hypnogogue
  6. Albert Ross
  7. Thorn
  8. Aerodrome
  9. The Coming Days
  10. No Other You
  11. Succulent
  12. Antarctica
  13. Second Bridge
    - Added content -
  14. Realm of Minor Angels
  15. Amanita
  16. Song 18
  17. Sublimated In Song
  18. Pleasure
  19. A Strange Past
Eros Zeta and the Perfumed Guitars

  1. Realm Of Minor Angels
  2. Pleasure
  3. Amanita
  4. 2054
  5. Manifesto
  6. The Immediate Future
  7. Sublimated In Song
  8. Song 18
  9. The Weather
  10. Korea
  11. Song From The Machine Age
  12. Sleeping For Miles
  13. Last Melody
  14. A Strange Past
  15. Music From The Ghost Hotel

Wednesday, September 20, 2023

R.E.M.'s "Up" 25th Anniversary Edition due Nov. 10 via Craft Recordings; previously unreleased “Daysleeper (‘Party of Five’ recording)

The 25th Anniversary Edition of R.E.M.'s bestselling 1998 album Up is due November 10 via Craft Recordings. The newly remastered reissue featuures a never-before-heard 11-song set from the band's taping of the TV show "Party of Five" along with expansive liner notes, new interviews with the band, HD-restored music videos, performance footage and more.

In celebration of the forthcoming reissue, the band is debuting the previously unreleased "Daysleeper ('Party of Five' Recording)" -- stream the track HERE. Check out the official media release below...Robert Kinsler
Craft Recordings is celebrating the 25th anniversary of R.E.M.’s bestselling 11th studio album Up with a series of expanded and remastered reissues, all of which are available for pre-order now and set for release on November 10. Created in partnership with the band, the Deluxe 2-CD/1 Blu-Ray edition offers a wealth of material for fans, including the band’s previously unreleased set from their guest appearance on the hit TV series “Party of Five. Captured in 1999, the performance includes an 11-song setlist—including enduring hits like “Man on the Moon,” “Losing My Religion,” and “It’s the End of the World as We Know It (and I Feel Fine)”—plus a spoken-word introduction. The accompanying Blu-ray features HD music videos from the 1998 album (“Daysleeper,” “Lotus” and “At My Most Beautiful”), a six-song performance from the era (titled Uptake) recorded in a London studio, the album’s original EPK, plus stunning hi-resolution and 5.1 surround sound audio. Housed in a 32-page hardcover bookthe collection also includes new liner notes from journalist and Talkhouse Executive Editor Josh Modell (A.V. ClubSPIN, Rolling Stone, Vulture) featuring new interviews with the band members.
The expanded reissue, which features the album plus the “Party of Five” performance in its entirety, is also available in 2-CD, digital and hi-res configurations, while the 14-track, 2-LP album will be reissued on 180-gram vinyl. A limited-edition pressing on Green Marble vinyl is also available exclusively at R.E.M.’s official store along with special Up merchandise. All reissue formats feature newly remastered audio by Bob Ludwig at Gateway Mastering.
Available to stream now is the remastered version of “Daysleeper,” as well as the band’s never-before-released performance of the song from the “Party of Five” taping. R.E.M.’s appearance on the teen drama (which launched the careers of Matthew Fox and Neve Campbell, among others) remains a fond memory. “The intersection of visual and musical art is always interesting, so it was cool to be a part of TV,” recalls bassist Mike Mills. Stream/share the “Party of Five” recording of “Daysleeper” HERE. Stream/share the remastered album version of “Daysleeper” and pre-order Up on 2-CD/1-Blu-ray, 2-CD, or 2-LP, and pre-save the deluxe digital album HERE.
The intimate concert, recorded at Los Angeles’ Palace Theatre, was populated by R.E.M. fan club members and served as an opportunity for the band to rehearse their latest material—plus beloved hits—ahead of touring. “There are dozens of great R.E.M. live sets out there, but nothing quite like this up-close oddity,” writes Josh Modell. “Loose and happy, the band runs through a good chunk of Up in front of a small crowd…Stipe is chatty, telling stories about accidentally ripping off Billy Corgan (and telling Corgan about it), playing with the Human League on a funny stage at that very venue, and more.”
About R.E.M.:
Having established a powerful legacy as one of the most enduring and essential rock bands in popular music history, R.E.M. pioneered the alt-rock movement of the ’90s, influencing the likes of Radiohead, Nirvana, Pavement and Pearl Jam. Formed in 1980, the group enjoyed an extraordinary three-decade-long run of creative vitality and multi-platinum sales before amicably disbanding in 2011. Despite great success, the band members never lost track of their core values—remaining outspoken in their views about political, social, and environmental issues, and never wavering when it came to artistic integrity. Throughout the course of their career together R.E.M. released a total of 15 studio albums, won three GRAMMY® Awards and were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2007.
About Craft Recordings: 
Craft Recordings is home to one of the largest and most essential collections of master recordings and compositions in the world. Its storied repertoire includes landmark releases from icons such as Joan Baez, John Coltrane, Creedence Clearwater Revival, Celia Cruz, Miles Davis, Isaac Hayes, John Lee Hooker, Little Richard, R.E.M., Joan Sebastian and Traveling Wilburys. Plus, the catalog recordings of celebrated contemporary acts including A Day to Remember, Evanescence, Alison Krauss, Nine Inch Nails, Taking Back Sunday and Violent Femmes, to name just a few. Renowned imprints with catalogs issued under the Craft banner include Fania, Fantasy, Fearless, Musart, Nitro, Panart, Prestige, Riverside, Rounder, Specialty, Stax, Vanguard, Varèse Sarabande, Vee-Jay and Victory, among many others. Craft creates thoughtfully curated packages, with a meticulous devotion to quality and a commitment to preservation—ensuring that these recordings endure for new generations to discover. Craft is also home to the Billie Holiday and Tammy Wynette estates which preserve and protect their respective names, likeness and music through day-to-day legacy management of these cultural trailblazers. 
Craft Recordings is the catalog label team for Concord. For more info, visitCraftRecordings.comand followonFacebook,Twitter, InstagramTikTok andYouTube.
Photo credit Patrik Andersson

Deluxe Edition (2-CD/1-Blu-Ray):
Disc 1 – Up (remastered audio)
1. Airportman
2. Lotus
3. Suspicion
4. Hope
5. At My Most Beautiful 
6. The Apologist
7. Sad Professor
8. You’re In The Air
9. Walk Unafraid
10. Why Not Smile
11. Daysleeper
12. Diminished
13. Parakeet
14. Falls To Climb
Disc 2 – Party of Five Recording
1. Introduction
2. What’s The Frequency, Kenneth?
3. Lotus  
4. Daysleeper
5. Country Feedback
6. Walk Unafraid
7. Losing My Religion
8. Parakeet
9. The Apologist
10. It’s The End Of The World As We Know It (And I Feel Fine)
11. I’m Not Over You
12. Man On The Moon
Disc 3 – Blu-ray
1. Up – 5.1 Surround Sound
2. Up – Hi-Resolution Audio
3. This Way Up (press kit)
4. Uptake (six-song performance)
5. Daysleeper (music video) 
6. Lotus (music video)
7. At My Most Beautiful (music video)
Expanded Edition (2-CD/Digital):
Disc 1 – Up (remastered audio)
1. Airportman
2. Lotus
3. Suspicion
4. Hope
5. At My Most Beautiful
6. The Apologist
7. Sad Professor
8. You’re In The Air
9. Walk Unafraid
10. Why Not Smile
11. Daysleeper
12. Diminished
13. Parakeet
14. Falls To Climb
Disc 2 – Party of Five Recording
1. Introduction
2. What’s The Frequency, Kenneth?
3. Lotus
4. Daysleeper
5. Country Feedback
6. Walk Unafraid
7. Losing My Religion
8. Parakeet
9. The Apologist
10. It’s The End Of The World (And I Feel Fine)
11. I’m Not Over You
12. Man On The Moon 
Up (2-LP Remastered Vinyl):
Side A
1. Airportman
2. Lotus
3. Suspicion
Side B
1. Hope
2. At My Most Beautiful
3. The Apologist
4. Sad Professor
Side C
1. You’re In The Air
2. Walk Unafraid
3. Why Not Smile
4. Daysleeper
Side D
1. Diminished
2. Parakeet
3. Falls To Climb