Too Pure Singles Club

As someone dedicated to collecting 7″ singles, you can get no better bang for your buck than by joining a singles club. Yet, one of the things I like about this hobby is that it is generally really cheap – four bucks here, six there. So when you have these clubs come up, it kind of takes its toll on the ‘ol pocketbook. The Too Pure series which I only found out about today via Pitchfork will set you back around $60… yikes. Still recovering from Christmas and the Bored Fortress subscription I got this month, so I’ll sit this one out.

Here’s P-Forks rundown:

The January face of the Too Pure Singles Club is chamber popper Anni Rossi, while February brings a split offering between French-born Frànçois (a sometime member of Camera Obscura’s live band) and Ray Rumours, aka Electrelane’s Ros Murray. (If the Rossi and Rumours singles sound familiar, they were previously mentioned here.) Finally, for now at least, March heralds the arrival of an entry from Austin’s the Octopus Project, the crew’s first release outside of North America.

As usual, these singles contain two exclusive, previously unreleased tracks and are limited to an international run of 500 copies. Apart from a few select record stores, the only way to get your hands on one of them is through an annual subscription obtained here.

Bored Fortress 7″ Singles Club

I just saw over at Seven Inches (Everyday) that the Bored Fortress 7″ club is now available from Not Not Fun. If you are a Yank, it is gonna set you back $38 bones, or $50 if you are unfortunate enough to live elsewhere. Limited number of spots in the club, so don’t sleep on this. You get two split 7″ records every other month, starting in Feb, and ending in July. 

This year’s lineup looks pretty amazicon:

CHARALAMBIDES
SLITHER
VAMPIRE BELT
SKULLFLOWER
SHEPHERDS
INCA ORE
MAGIK MARKERS
SECRET ABUSE
POCAHAUNTED
AXOLOTL
THURSTON MOORE
IGNATZ

Afternoon Naps – Can’t Stop the Weather 7″

a1: Can’t Stop the Weather
b1: Clean Bill of Health
b2: Happy all the Time

Available directly from Cloudberry Records

IN which sometimes one can be sucked into the gravitational pull of an unknown band by a list of influences: As Dodge from My Kentucky Blog says “Fans of Voxtrot, Belle & Sebastian, The Beach Boys and Orange Juice will probably love this band.” This is where I think to myself: “I like all of those bands!” and check them out. Guess what, Dodge is spot on, and I have a new band to follow.

This is sunny pop music, that is ultimately really safe (who doesn’t love pop music?), ends up being compelling enough to warrant the “instant order overload” You know, where you listen to a few songs and then order everything you can find? That is what I just did. Check it out.

In the process, I see that Cloudberry records is 73 records into some kind of series… awesome.

UPDATE: I just got word that I ordered a 3″ CD-r, not a 7″. I could take this down, but won’t.

Slumberland Records – In Search of the New 7″ Series

Available from Midheaven  and Slumberland on January 21.

This looks promising – yet another seven inch series to spend your money on. This one isn’t exactly a club, but the label is planning is to release two limited-edition split 7″ singles every ten weeks or so, then compile every eight singles onto CDs to keep them available.   All singles will be pressed on color vinyl and packaged in special sleeves — full-color, letterpress, silkscreen or something else cool.

The first split single will be from  Roy Moller & The Company, (the Company being Gary Thom and Stevie Jackson from Belle and Sebastian) and the Hermit Crabs  (a folk-pop band from Glasgow), and the second one will be “Spectorian pop of Bye! (featuring Archie Moore from Velocity Girl/Black Tambourine) with the suave pop stylings of The Happy Couple”

This actually sounds pretty great!

No Age – Singles Series

dsc00781.jpg

1. Get Hurt 12″ (Upset the Rythm) (Ebay Store in North America)

a1. Everybody’s Down
a2. Switches
a3. Get Hurt
b1. Neck Escapah
b2. Great Faces
b3. I Wanna Sleep

n.jpg

2. Sick People Are Safe 12″ (Deleted Art)

a1. Boy Void
a2. Sick People Are Safe
b1. Vacation Pay
b2. Semi-sorted

o.jpg

3. Dead Plane 12″ (Teenage Teardrops – SOLD OUT)

a1: Dead Plane
a2: Goat Hurt
b1: Never Not Beaten
b2: You is My Hot Rabbit

a.jpg

4. Youth Attack 7″ (Youth Attack Records – Sold Out)

a1: Neck Escaper
a2: My Life’s Alright Without You
b1: Escarpment

g.jpg

5. Post Present Medium 7″ (PPM)

a: Every Artist Needs a Tragedy
b: Loosen This Job

e.jpg

5 singles put out by five labels in one month (March 2007) from three different countries (USA, UK, Sweden). When you collect all 5, they spell “NO AGE.” Limited edition coloured vinyl (i.e. I got one of the 100 “beige swirl” copies of the “Dead Plane” ep). You don’t even need to know anything about the music before you are ready to spend the next week tracking down one of each – this is a record collector’s wet dream.

As a strategy for getting a relatively unknown band from LA some action, this is a perfect way to do it. I remember pulling my hair out the day I heard about this series, trying to figure out where to find all of these. The band didn’t even have a proper website (only myspace) and all it said was “five eps out on five labels!” I had to HUNT.

In the age of eBay, with its saved search functionality, the hunt is mechanized for me. I don’t have to do any work – I just have to be patient. Honestly, this has killed some of my passion for record collecting, as it is just too easy. When something like this series comes along, it go my heart racing (would I get one of the coloured vinyl editions, or would I be too late?!!?). I had fun searching for clues, working my contacts… amazing.

The music is another story – NO AGE are one of my primo musical discoveries of 2007. So fresh sounding, so inventive; the recordings are all messy and lofi enough to suit my taste (I love lofi). I just haven’t heard anything by them that I dislike – it really just doesn’t get any better than this.

#3 and #4 are both sold out, but they don’t say “out of print” which is promising. If you want these, just try emailing the respective labels. This has worked for me (even if they point you towards a distro or record store that might have copies).

Shocking Pinks – Singles Series

Listen to the Shocking Pinks Singles Series Player

dsc00779-1.jpg

Blue: (Rough Trade Shops)
a:This Aching Deal (think The Bats meets My Bloody Valentine)
b: August 3rd (Arkitype remix)

Green: (Rough Trade Shop)
a: Victims (“it’s like a garage band raised on a diet of just Sebadoh or a classic Flying Nun band that you heard on John Peel once”)
b: April May

Red: (Rough Trade Shop)
a: The Narrator
b: Dressed to Please

Pink (7″) (Norman records)
a: End of the World
b: Go to Sleep

Pink (12″) (Norman records)
a1: End of the World
a2: Go to Sleep (Deerhunter Remix)
b1: Go to Sleep
b2: Go to Sleep (Eluvium Remix)

(set on my own shocking pink kitchen table)

I will let the music here speak for itself: kind of like like My Bloody Valentine, New Order, Hood, The Clean, Liquid Liquid, Pavement (also: every free thinking band known to man). Layered, atmospheric, otherworldly, manic pop hooks, wistful psychedelics, frantic basement percussion & breathless energy. Any of these singles in isolation would make my year end list, but the combination is just value added, double plus good. Kind of like Voltron or something.

This series was supposed to ramp up to the LP (out on DFA in September), but I only got the End of the World singles on Friday. Each of these puppies is limited to 500 copies, and from what I can tell, they are only available overseas (I put links to the webstores that these are still available at, as they are already sold out in other places).

This is the song/video (End of the World) that started my obsession with this band: