SP801-SP900

SP0900

SHABAZZ PALACES

BLACK UP, 2010

Even the most ardent fans of the impressionistic, astral jazz-rap of Digable Planets couldn't have possibly predicted Butterfly's later metamorphosis. Ishmael Butler reinvented himself as Palaceer Lazaro, hit up the studio with Tendai Maraire, Erik Blood, and THEESatisfaction, and the collection of artists created a monolith as spacey as it is dense. Dystopian yet idealistic, fly yet conscious, Black Up is experimental — sometimes even profoundly unmusical — and immersive. Butler's lyrics come in a variety of rhythms: clipped, bouncy, staggered, fluid, choppy. Inanimate objects litter the floors of every scene, whether discarded by kings or by materialistic paupers looking for the next shiny, new thing. It's an enormous record which resists easy categorization, unless you're willing to see it for what it is: Hip-hop music's equivalent to Radiohead's Kid A. — MD

Date Played:  June 27 on The Afternoon Show with Kevin Cole


SP0899

NO AGE

"GLITTER" 7" Single, 2010

Stepping ever-so-slightly away from the florid singles leading the charge of their Sub Pop debut Nouns, "Glitter" represents No Age at their most grayscale. With heavily processed handclaps augmenting an outsized arena-rock beat, the Los Angeles duo remain marvelous at creating texture, trading their colorful, bright distortion for guitars which sound like the snow from a television screen without a signal and squealing power drills. Despite the industrial music vibe and Dean Spunt's low, monotone vocals, the music sounds like it's ascending; No Age can't help but make hopeful noise. On the B-side of the seven-inch is "Influorescence," one of those classic breakup songs perfect for playing at full volume on the open road. — MD

Date Played:  June 27 on The Afternoon Show with Kevin Cole


SP0898

(NO RELEASE)

 


SP0897

DAVID CROSS

BIGGER AND BLACKERER CD + DVD Combo, 2011

Look, even in the distant past of 2010, people have been trying to compartmentalize all of their #content. Maybe you don’t want to have to buy two separate physical discs to get both halves of David Cross’ Bigger and Blackerer stand up special. So Sub Pop was gracious enough to offer a digital version that included both the CD and DVD performances. How sweet of them. - DH

Date NOT Played:  June 27 


SP0896

(NO RELEASE)

 


SP0895

MOGWAI

HARDCORE WILL NEVER DIE, BUT YOU WILL, 2011

How do you live up to such a big statement like Hardcore Will Never Die, But You Will? In the case of Scottish post-rock all stars Mogwai, you make one of the biggest albums of your career. The album, emblazoned with an image of New York’s Hudson River, features some of the band’s grandest musical statements. Sprawling between magnetic guitar riffs and droning rhythms that are just as decadent as they are thrilling. - DH

Date Played:  June 27 on The Midday Show with Cheryl Waters


SP0894

AVI BUFFALO

"REMEMBER LAST TIME" Digital Single, 2011

Avi Buffalo’s self-titled debut found the young songwriter Avigdor Benyamin Zahner-Isenberg grappling with the tail end of teenage angst and sexual frustration, culminating in the astounding seven-and-a-half-minute opus “Remember Last Time.” The song wastes no time getting started, rushing in after a few guitar chord chimes. He runs through a series of self deprecating questions like “How long did I really last, how soon were you sick of me too?” But it eventually builds to the quiet reflections of “I’ve never written a love song, but I will for you.” At this point, the band’s focus turns much more expansive and Zahner-Isenberg delvers the most massive, glorious guitar solo of his career. - DH

Date Played:  June 27 on The Midday Show with Cheryl Waters


SP0893

BLITZEN TRAPPER

"HEAVEN & EARTH" Digital Single, 2011

Blitzen Trapper are at their most tender with “Heaven and Earth” from their sophomore album, Destroyer of the Void. On an album that marked an ambitious departure for the band with maximalist arrangements, “Heaven and Earth” is remarkably grounded and soft-spoken in contrast. Marked by pensive pianos and lush string arrangements, the song may be one of the band’s most notable and cherished ballads. - DH

Date Played:  June 27 on The Morning Show with Troy Nelson


SP0892

NO AGE

EVERYTHING IN BETWEEN, 2011

OTW

Date Played:  June 27 on The Morning Show with Troy Nelson


SP0891

JAILL

THAT'S HOW WE BURN, 2011

The Milwaukee psych-pop quartet had to change their name in order to release this Sub Pop debut (a European band from decades prior had shared the name Jail with them). In a sarcastic gesture, the band tacked an extra ‘l’ to the end of it, and voila! That’s How We Burn, the band’s second serving of energetic lo-fi pop, was recorded at Justin Perkins’ Mystery Room Studio in Milwaukee, and has been their most commercially successful album to date. - KF

Date Played:  June 27 by DJ Abbie


SP0890

KELLEY STOLTZ

TO DREAMERS, 2011

The fifth of five albums released on Sub Pop, To Dreamers found the San Francisco-based psych-pop revivalist sounding decidedly more vintage rock than some of his earlier releases — think Kinks-meets-Harry Nilsson — with melodies so charming and bright that you’d be smart to take them on your next road trip. - KF

Date Played:  June 27 by DJ Abbie


SP0889

THE VASELINES

SEX WITH AN X, 2010

The legendary Glasgow group formed in 1987, released an album and a few singles before breaking up in 1989. Lucky for us, they reunited in 2008 to play Sub Pop’s 20th Anniversary music festival in Marymoor Park, and released Sex with An X, their second studio album (and first on Sub Pop) in 2010. Core duo Eugene Kelly and Frances McKee were joined by Belle and Sebastian’s Stevie Jackson and Bob Kildea (on guitar and bass, respectively), in addition to the 1990s’ Michael McGaughrin on drums. - KF

Date Played:  June 26 on The Afternoon Show with Kevin Cole


SP0888

FLEET FOXES

HELPLESSNESS BLUES, 2011

On the heels of releasing a self-titled debut record that sold over 400,000 copies worldwide, was the Album of the Year for Pitchfork, and made the band the most popular Seattle group since Seth Cohen was having existential freakouts over Death Cab for Cutie tickets on network television, Fleet Foxes upped the ante on Helplessness Blues. Though they know the essential lesson of knowing when to sit out (two songs feature Robin Pecknold’s voice and acoustic guitar, entirely unaccompanied– and they serve as the two most naked and vulnerable emotional moments on the album), their prowess shows in grand scale on the record, as they seamlessly shift from the piano-led thump of “Battery Kinzie” right into the 60’s folk-leaning epic “The Plains/Bitter Dancer”. The interesting thing as Fleet Foxes as musicians (which at this point includes Morgan Henderson, known for his work with Seattle post-hardcore heroes Blood Brothers) is that for all of the acclaim surrounding their harmonies and timeless pop melodies, the band never lets a motif linger for too long; Fleet Foxes songs are built in suites and movements rather than the standard verse-chorus-verse format. It's a deeply affecting, massively lush record, underscored greatly by the depth and emotion of Pecknold's writing, expressive and earnest. - MD

Date Played:  June 26 on The Afternoon Show with Kevin Cole


SP0887

(NO RELEASE)

 


SP0886

(NO RELEASE)

 


SP0885

PAPERCUTS

FADING PARADE, 2011

The first and only Sub Pop release by San Francisco songwriter and producer Jason Robert Quever, this subtle, dreamy album remains one of his strongest. Quever’s gentle, breathy singing provides a lovely match for the warm, heart wrenching melodies that pop up throughout this 2011 release. The album was recorded in 2010 with Quever’s touring band and produced by Thom Monahan (Vetiver, Devendra Banhart, Wild Nothing). - KF

Date Played:  June 26 on The Midday Show with Cheryl Waters


SP0884

COCOROSIE

"LEMONADE" 7" Single, 2010

This 7” single featuring the radio edit of “Lemonade” was released for Record Store Day 2010. The experimental sister duo’s knockout piano ballad was produced by TV On the Radio’s Dave Sitek, and showcases Bianca “Coco” and Sierra “Rosie” Casady’s complementary vocals at their strongest. James Reed of the Boston Globe called the trip-hop-tinged tune a "genuine thrill,” likening Bianca’s voice to a psychedelic Judy Garland. The B-side features a twinkly cover of the Beach Boys’ classic tune “Surfer Girl,” written by Brian Wilson and appearing on the band’s 1963 album of the same name. - KF

Date Played:  June 26 on The Midday Show with Cheryl Waters


SP0883

DAVID CROSS

BIGGER AND BLACKERER DVD, 2010

As mentioned in the previous entry, the DVD and CD versions of Bigger and Blackerer contain different sets from comedian David Cross. The DVD was filmed by film maker and seasoned music doc veteran Lance Bangs and features some of Cross’ most scathing political commentary as well as his sex store escapades. It’s, uh, not really a good one for family movie night but an excellent document of Cross’ crass, brash, and smart sense of humor. - DH

Date NOT Played:  June 26 


SP0882

DAVID CROSS

BIGGER AND BLACKERER  CD, 2010

David Cross’ name is practically synonymous with modern black comedy. Okay, maybe more so “blue comedy,” a la Tobia Funke. The comedian recorded two sets at Boston’s Wilbur Theatre, splitting the recordings between an audio only CD version and a DVD. The CD includes a theme song composed by Mr. Show’s Mark Rivers and Sub Pop hyped the release boasting his bits about “gastro-intestinal misadventures with his dog Ollie Red Sox” and a “sing along with “The Sultan’s Revenge.” - DH

Date NOT Played:  June 26 


SP0881

HANDSOME FURS

SOUND KAPITAL, 2010

Canadian duo Handsome Furs was a collaboration between Dan Boeckner (of Wolf Parade) and Alexei Perry who, at the time, doubled up as husband and wife. In a press release, Sub Pop describes Handsome Furs as forging “life-affirming anthems taut with muscle and blood”. Perry’s skill as a poet and keyboardist alongside Boeckner’s acerbic musical prowess creates a clear, athletics synth pop. The album emerged out of a 2010 tour to Burma, where the duo performed alongside local bands forced to dodge oppressive censorship laws by performing literally underground with limited accesses to electricity and recording equipment. The track “Serve the People” was written in tribute to local Burmese band Side Effect. - SW

Date Played:  June 26 on The Morning Show with DJ Morgan


SP0880

COCOROSIE

GREY OCEANS, 2010

The globally nomadic and eccentric art rock duo CocoRosie made their Sub Pop debut in 2010 with Grey Oceans. The brainchild of sisters Bianca (“Coco”) and Sierra (“Rosie”) Casady, CocoRosie had been recording music for seven years before they turned to Sub Pop. Grey Oceans is a markedly distinct sonic venture for the duo, turning towards crisper production and broader instrumentation on this album. The duo’s proclivity towards electronically inspired soundscapes is, for a moment, put on the back burner on this release. - SW

Date Played:  June 26 on The Morning Show with DJ Morgan


SP0879

VARIOUS ARTISTS

SP20: CASUAL NOSTALGIA FEST, 2010

Sub Pop celebrated its 20th anniversary in 2008 with a 2-day music festival in Marymoor Park succinctly called “SP20”. The live performances from the festival were collected and compiled onto a release for Record Store Day 2010. This compilation includes some Sub Pop all time favorites – Mudhoney playing “The Open Mind”, Pissed Jeans playing “Caught Licking Leather”, Wolf Parade playing “Fine Young Cannibals” alongside sixteen other incredible performances. It’s a great tribute to the labels’ 20th birthday and it served a good cause: Sub Pop donated all profits from the sale of the 9,200 copies of this release to the Clinton Bush Haiti Fund. - SW

Date Played:  June 26 by DJ Reeves


SP0878

THE ALBUM LEAF

"THERE IS A WIND" 12" Single, 2010

The brainchild of San Diego ambient/post-rock musician Jimmy LaValle, This Album Leaf joins the ranks of 2010 Record Store Day releases with this single. The single features an acoustic version of “There Is A Wind” and a Jamuel Saxon remix of “Falling From The Sun” – two tracks from This Album Leaf’s third Sub Pop release - alongside two previously unreleased tracks. - SW

Date Played:  June 25 by DJ Riz


SP0877

BEACH HOUSE

"ZEBRA" 12" Single, 2010

Having recently signed to the label, Sub Pop released 1,500 copies of this single from Baltimore dream pop icons for Record Store Day 2010. The single featured the UK radio edit of “Zebra” and a leisurely, spacious remix of “Ten Mile Stereo”, from Beach House’s Sub Pop 2010 debut record Teen Dream, in addition to two previously unreleased tracks. Interestingly, the center label of the pressing incorrectly states a playing speed of 33 1/3 RPM. - SW

Date Played:  June 25 on The Afternoon Show with Troy Nelson


SP0876

DUM DUM GIRLS/MALE BONDING

"PAY FOR ME" b/w "BEFORE IT'S GONE" 7" Single, 2010

The unlikely combination of Dum Dum Girls and Male Bonding comes to fruition for their split 7” for Record Store Day. Dum Dum Girls are on the A side with, “Pay for Me,” a tongue in cheek track that culminates in frontwoman Dee Dee repeating one line: “Pay for me to leave this bar.” Male Bonding finishes up with “Before It’s Gone,” a punchy rock track with muted vocals and a pretty sweet riff, that’s unfortunately over almost as soon as it begins. - AK

Date Played:  June 25 on The Afternoon Show with Troy Nelson


SP0875

FOALS

TOTAL LIFE FOREVER, 2010

Despite Total Life Forever being Foals’ sophomore record, it’s on album opener “Blue Blood” that Yannis Philippakis finally really sings. After that point, the British five-piece open up and come into their own, with impressively catchy hooks and riffs, and somehow string very different tracks into a cohesive vision. Tracks from the first half of the record are anthemic and echo in reverb, most notably the title track and “Miami.” However, the culminating point is “Spanish Sahara,” where the group takes a softer step back, before growing into a beautiful full band explosion, where they come together to each shine over the nearly seven-minute track. Although the latter half the record dabbles a bit too far in the atmospherics, Total Life Forever is an inviting departure from their debut where Foals put themselves out there, in terms of both vulnerability and volume. - AK

Date Played:  June 25 on The Midday Show with Cheryl Waters


SP0874

HAPPY BIRTHDAY

"SHAMPOO" b/w "ALIEN" 7" Single, 2010

Happy Birthday comprises a few Sub Pop favorites who hail from the upper right USA. Vermont natives Kyle Thomas, who is also known as King Tuff, plus Chris Weisman and Ruth Garbus (sister of tUnE-yArDs’ Merrill Garbus) played four shows in their home state before being signed to Sub Pop. Shortly after the release of their debut record, the trio teamed up to put out a 7” in honor of Record Store Day. “Shampoo / Alien” continues upon the immediacy of their debut record, and the A side, “Shampoo,” is a buzzy pop number featuring some falsettos and doo-wops that might stay in your head for far longer than you anticipate.

Date Played:  June 25 on The Midday Show with Cheryl Waters


SP0873

RETRIBUTION GOSPEL CHOIR

"HIDE IT AWAY" Digital Single, 2010

Retribution Gospel Choir is the rock n' roller cousin to their mellow, indie labelmate Low — comprising two members of Low, vocalist Alan Sparhawk and bassist Steve Garrington, plus Eric Pollard on the drums. The trio delves into more sludgy, classic rock in RGC, and “Hide it Away” soars far past the volume levels Low maintained, giving Sparhawk a chance to rip on the guitars and do a bit more damage on the vocals than he could in his previous project. - AK

Date Played:  June 25 on The Morning Show with DJ Morgan


SP0872

BEACH HOUSE

"NORWAY" Digital Single, 2010

“Norway,” the lead single off Beach House’s Sub Pop debut, Teen Dream, marked a shift from their laconic bedroom days to sunshine soaked dream pop. With just a bit quicker BPM than before, the Baltimore duo kept what they were known for, a drum machine and Victoria Legrand’s emotive voice, but added twinkling guitars and hushed backing vocals. Legrand said of the track, “It’s not specifically about Norway, it’s what happens when your imagination is triggered by something that is very powerful visually.” The origins of the song were probably pretty impressive — while on tour in Europe, a Norwegian outlet asked if the duo would write a song on a train from Bergen to Oslo. “Norway” is what became of it, and the album recording doesn’t stray too far from the original. - AK

Date Played:  June 25 on The Morning Show with DJ Morgan


SP0871

CHAD VANGAALEN

DIAPER ISLAND, 2011

Upon its release, Sub Pop referred to Diaper Island as VanGaalen’s “closest thing he has done to a rock album.” Looking back at earlier entries in his discography, the description carries a lot of weight. Each VanGaalen record has been a marvelous scattershot of ideas and genres, but on Diaper Island we get to see what it’s like when the Calgary songwriter really tries to hone in on a sound or idea. Self-recorded, his wizardry behind the board feels elevated as he churns through delightfully obtuse and disorienting rock tunes. - DH

Date Played:  June 24 by DJ Evie


SP0870

WOLF PARADE

EXPO 86, 2010

The third (and, at the time, final) Wolf Parade album, Expo 86, feels like the red-headed stepchild of the Wolf Parade catalog. It feels like no-one knows quite what to do with it, seemingly including the band, who only play a select few of its songs live. However, while it may appear opportune to dismiss Expo 86 in favor of twin accomplishments At Mount Zoomer and Apologies to the Queen Mary, it remains a undervalued album that deserves a reconsideration. Dan Boeckner and Spencer Krug's songwriting has rarely been better unified, an impressive feat giving their frequent departures on numerous solo projects. Krug delivers arguably more streamlined work than on previous efforts, perhaps tempered by the explorations of Sunset Rubdown. Strong opener "Cloud Shadow on the Mountain" and "What Did My Lover Say?" are two quite good Krug cuts, as is closer "Cave-O-Sapien," which is a fitting endpiece to a three-album run which Expo 86 culminates. Boeckner holds his own, especially with "Ghost Pressure," but Expo 86 combines their aesthetics to a point where songwriting credits start to not matter. Wolf Parade fans owe Expo 86 another chance, especially considering the band's recent return and run of excellent live performances. - MH

Date Played:  June 24 by DJ Evie


SP0869

DUM DUM GIRLS

"JAIL LA LA" 7" Single, 2010

Before the release of the first Dum Dum Girls album, I Will Be, came this 7" with infectious single "Ja La La," which certainly lays the groundwork for the Dum Dum Girls sound. Also immediately evident is the personality of frontwoman Dee Dee, whose voice is at the dead center of the track. On the b-side is a skilled cover of Rolling Stones's "Play With Fire." -MH

Date Played:  June 24 by Stevie Zoom


SP0868

VETIVER

MORE OF THIS EP, 2014

Vetiver’s More Of The Past was originally intended to be released on Sub Pop before the band’s folky opus Tight Knight, but those cards didn’t play out and the album was released via Gnomonsong. However, Sub Pop did release a digital version of the EP. It’s a much more raucous affair than Tight Knight, allowing songwriter Andy Cabic to flaunt a bit of flair in his performance between rockers like “See You Tonight” and modern bluegrass romps like “Just To Have You.” - DH

Date Played:  June 24 by Stevie Zoom


SP0867

(NO RELEASE)

 


SP0866

DEATH VESSEL

ISLAND INTERVALS, 2014

Jumping ahead to 2014 is the second record for Death Vessel on Sub Pop, titled Island Intervals. This comes years after the previous Death Vessel LP, 2008's Nothing Is Precious Enough For Us. Though six years had passed, Island Intervals feels like a natural progression of Joel Thibodeau's sound, delicate arrangements built around his unique vocal style. While the ornate quality of Death Vessel's music may off put some listeners, it seems tailor made to gather a dedicated following. -MH

Date Played:  June 23 by Troy Nelson


SP0865

AVI BUFFALO

AVI BUFFALO, 2010

Avigdor Zahner-Isenberg was just 17 years old when Sub Pop approached him about signing his project Avi Buffalo, culminating in a label bidding war for the burgeoning talent. Listening to the project’s self-titled debut, you can see the immediacy for wanting to lock down this promising upstart. His lyrics often dealt with sexual frustration in ways that feel both incredibly apropos of a teenager but also with a maturity in its candidness. His alien-like vocals shriek with desperation on the jaunty “Summer Cum” and the twisted “Five Little Sluts.” Then there’s his playing. Epics like “Remember Last Time” and “Jessica” showcased an energy that felt like it could pulverize the room. It’s rare to find the cocktail of candor, doubt, and the prowess to hold it together, but Zahner-Isenberg had it all with this remarkable debut. - DH

Date Played:  June 23 by Troy Nelson


SP0864

AVI BUFFALO

"WHAT'S IN IT FOR" 7" Single, 2009

It only took a year into Avi Buffalo’s formation for the project, fronted by 17-year-old Avigdor Zahner-Isenberg, to get signed and take off. After playing massive shows around the Los Angeles record, the band was building a steady buzz without much of any recordings to their name. This 7-inch featuring “What’s In It For?” was the first pre-cursor to give outside L.A. audiences exactly why this project was so special. Zahner-Isenberg’s mangled warbling voice is deceptively poptimist, crafting an ear worm about trying and failing to make a romantic connection. At 17, I don’t think any of us could say we were much better – which is part of the song’s charm. Complemented with the heartache of “Jessica,” we start to get a vision of the lovesick lover who doesn’t know how to love. It’s something we’d get to hear a lot more of when the band would make their full-length debut in 2010. — DH

Date Played:  June 23 by DJ Morgan


SP0863

RUBY SUNS

FIGHT SOFTLY, 2010

Ryan McPhun has been the only steady member of The Ruby Suns they were called, uh, Ryan McPhun and The Ruby Suns. On Fight Softly, he branches out even further into “solo artist” territory with a record he recorded and produced himself while traveling around the globe. And that sense of sojourn is heavy on the album, implementing sounds from Africa and puling from his new home in New Zealand. It’s one of his most experimental, but also fun, works in the Ruby Suns catalog. - DH

Date Played:  June 23 by Gabriel Teodros


SP0862

(NO RELEASE)

 


SP0861

KING KHAN

"THE FIERY TEARS OF ST. LAURENT" 7" Single, 2011

Garage rocker King Khan teams up with the mysterious Pat Meteor for this 7-inch single memorializing the life and tragic death of Christian martyr St. Lawrence. As detailed in the sleeve of the record, Lawrence was an archivist and librarian in the early church who supposedly knew the locations of the church’s hidden riches as well as holding a list of all the members of the church. Lawrence was captured by Roman Emperor Valerian and told to produce the treasures of the church within two days. Instead of giving his captors gold, he brought forth the diseased, orphaned and crippled and presented them as the “treasures of the church.” While historically this led to his beheading, the legend goes that he was burned to death but happily greeted death to enter the kingdom of heaven, even saying “Turn me over, I am done on this side.” This echo the refrain in Khan and Meteor’s song “The Fiery Tears of St. Laurent,” bellowing against the pensive distortion of the guitars, “Turn me over, I’m crisp on this side.” It’s a bleak tale, but Khan and Meteor strike a balance with the playful lyrics with the tragedy of Lawrence’s plight. - DH

Date Played:  June 22 on The Afternoon Show with Kevin Cole


SP0860

DANIEL MARTIN MOORE

IN THE COOL OF THE DAY, 2011

Daniel Martin Moore had been thinking of making a gospel album for quite some time, but it wasn’t until he arrived at WXVU in Cincinnati for an in studio performance that his brief thought turned into a concrete idea. Once he sat down at their in house Steinway piano, everything came together. Although the piano sparked this record’s conception, Moore’s vocals are the centerpiece of the record. At times soothing and at times powerful, his voice right at home over the keys and folky backing instruments. Several tracks on the record could even rival Jack Johnson’s rotation at any coffee shop. - AK

Date Played:  June 22 on The Afternoon Show with Kevin Cole


SP0859

J MASCIS

SEVERAL SHADES OF WHY, 2011

After fronting Dinosaur Jr. for over two decades, J Mascis brought his first solo effort to the table at the ripe age of 45. Despite Dinosaur Jr.’s reliance on the electric, Several Shades of Why is almost entirely acoustic and often confessional. At times it’s just Mascis, a mic, and an acoustic guitar, but at others he’s recruited some special guests to help extrapolate his vulnerability. Band of Horses’ Ben Bridwell and Kurt Vile make appearances, just to name a few. However, the most compelling addition is the strings from Godspeed You! Black Emperor violinist Sophie Trudeau, who adds some significant sentiment to the title track. - AK

Date Played:  June 22 on The Midday Show with Cheryl Waters


SP0858

ROGUE WAVE

EVERYDAY  Digital Single, 2011

On this release, Rogue Wave reanimates Buddy Holly’s “Everyday” for a very special occasion: the official soundtrack for Stubbs the Zombie. If you’re unfamiliar, it’s a video game starring a businessman-turned-zombie looking for revenge and cerebrums. For the single, Rogue Wave turns the classic lighthearted key tune into an intense, acoustic-driven moment, topped off with the necessary “Nah nah nahs” for any video game anthem. Rogue Wave also joins an all star track list including Death Cab for Cutie and The Flaming Lips to give the game a dynamic mesh of tracks to soundtrack the undead. - AK

Date Played:  June 22 on The Morning Show with John Richards


SP0857

OBITS

MOODY, STANDARD & POOR, 2011

Obits, the brainchild of Hot Snakes vocalist/guitarist Rick Froberg and Esdel’s Sohrab Habibion, were invited to play Sub Pop’s 20th anniversary before they were even signed to Sub Pop. In fact, they were invited to play based merely on a live bootleg of their first show that an A&R rep obtained. Granted, Froberg was an integral member of the previously signed Hot Snakes, it’s still an impressive feat. The sophomore attempt for Obits, Moody, Standard and Poor, continues on their trajectory of metal infused garage rock from their previous release (and previous projects), and of course, a metal record isn’t complete without some angsty song titles like “You Gotta Lose” and “I Blame Myself.” - AK

Date Played:  June 22 by DJ Atticus


SP0856

RETRIBUTION GOSPEL CHOIR

2, 2009

The side project of Low's Alan Sparhawk, Retribution Gospel Choir released a promising debut on Mark Kozelek's Caldo Verde Records. Their sophomore record, aptly titled 2, is a curious extension of Low's sound. Sparhawk's rather beautiful vocals remain a draw, but his melodies now accompany droning guitar workouts that could give most Low fans dire heart palpatations. The songs remain characteristically gorgeous at times, particularly on "Hide It Away" and "Bless Us All," but Retribution Gospel Choir gives listeners a different side of Sparhawk's creative capacities and guitar playing. This remains the group's only full-length on Sub Pop-- a third record, 3, followed in 2013. - MH

Date Played:  June 22 by DJ Atticus


SP0855

DANIEL MARTIN MOORE/BEN SOLLEE       

DEAR COMPANION, 2009

Dear Companion marks the first collaboration between three native Kentuckians — Daniel Martin Moore, Ben Sollee, and Jim James. Moore is one of the few Sub Pop signees who was signed through an unsolicited demo, and on this record he enlisted the help of Sollee, a cellist from Cold Spring, KY, and James on the production, who is most notable for singing in a little old band called My Morning Jacket. Together the three explore the challenges Kentucky faced in 2005, ranging from the ecological destruction caused by mountaintop removal mining, to the less literal cultural shifts occurring in the South. While the record is based on some concrete ideas, the record often sounds and feels much more free — folky choruses and soft guitars guide the moving, nostalgic feel of a sticky summer night in the South. - AK

Date Played:  June 22 by DJ Atticus


SP0854

MALE BONDING       

NOTHING HURTS, 2009

A decade into the new millenium and D.I.Y. scenes still refused to D.I.E. Born out of the ramshackle scene emerging from the Dalton district of London, the trio Male Bonding cut their teeth playing house shows and self releasing music through their own label Paradise Vendors, Inc. In the true “start something out of nothing spirit” of D.I.Y. culture, the band quickly built up buzz around their sweaty, rapid, and undeniably hooky brand of punk and indie rock. So much so, in fact, that Sub Pop scooped them up to release the band’s debut LP Nothing Hurts. It’s a record that moves at breakneck speed, squeezing in 13 songs in just shy of half-an-hour. But really it’s hard to not just want to loop each song over and over again, letting the flurry of guitar noise and distant sounding hooks wash over you indefinitely. - DH

Date Played:  June 21 by DJ Sean


SP0853

(NO RELEASE)

 


SP0852

SUNNY DAY REAL ESTATE       

LP2 (2009 EDITION), 2009

On the heels of 2009's Diary reissue, came a reissue of Sunny Day Real Estate's LP2, occasionally referred to as The Pink Album. Predictably enough, the record comes on pink vinyl, as well as brand new liner notes. Breaking up during the original recording sessions for the album, it is still remarkable that Sunny Day Real Estate managed to deliver a top-notch sophomore record despite inter-band turmoil. Even the simple pink album cover feels intentional after all these years. — MH

Date Played:  June 21 by DJ Sean


SP0851

THE DUTCHESS & DUKE       

SIDE BY SIDE  7" Single, 2009

Throughout their shirt-lived career, Seattle folk act The Dutchess & The Duke released music almost exclusively on Sub Pop subsidiary Hardly Art, but they made a foray into the parent label with this 7-inch single for the Sub Pop Singles club. The disc encapsulates the earnest charm of the act, implementing aspects of garage rock into their blissful harmonies and rustic aesthetics. The band broke up in 2010 after only two albums. - DH

Date Played:  June 20 by DJ Hans


SP0850

HAPPY BIRTHDAY       

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, 2009

Happy Birthday consisted of Kyle Thomas, better known as King Tuff, bassist Chris Weisman, and drummer Ruth Garbus (sister of Merrill Garbus, mastermind behind Tune-Yards). Their self-titled debut record, released in 2010 bridges a gap between C86-esque Twee and heavier sounds of the Northwest, to quite good effect. Highlights like "Pink Strawberry Shake" and "Subliminal Message" sound like lost jukebox classics with a solid dose of mania. All in all, it is a thoroughly charming debut record, and sadly remains the sole full-length from the trio. King Tuff's Sub Pop debut came out a few years later, but we can only hope and wait for the Happy Birthday reunion for Sub Pop's 35th birthday. Until then, "Girls FM" will remain on repeat. - MH

Date Played:  June 20 on The Afternoon Show with Kevin Cole


SP0849

THEE OH SEES       

IN THE SHADOW OF THE GIANT  7" Single, 2009

It's fitting that Thee Oh Sees made a contribution to the Sub Pop Singles Club, because some intrepid and overly ambitious music obsessive could easily document their discography in a similar fashion as this lengthy list of Sub Pop's releases. Somewhere in the glut of music the California psych/garage mainstays released in 2009 — right in the middle of their catalog's sweet spot, in this longtime Oh Sees fan's opinion — is the slow-moving, acoustic-driven "In the Shadow of the Giant," featuring off-center harmonies and a pulsating, wobbly organ (which carries on like the extended dialogue of someone on their death bed, offering their final wishes). On the b-side is a demo of "She Said to Me," a playful number interrupted by brass and a flutter of woodwind, and "Where People Do Drugs," digressive and noisy in a way unique to Thee Oh Sees. — MD

Date Played:  June 20 on The Afternoon Show with Kevin Cole


SP0848

THE YOUNG ACCUSER      

UNSOUND  7" Single, 2009

To state upfront, The Young Accuser is not a real band. In the 2009 debut novel from Joe Pernice (formerly of Scud Mountain Boys, Pernice Brothers), It Feels So Good When I Stop, the narrator plays in a band called The Young Accuser, who sends a demo tape to Sub Pop after the narrator's departure from the group. Naturally, Sub Pop decided to put out a real recording by the fictional band, as performed by Pernice and several other musicians. Although the Unsound EP contains one of the stranger backstories for a Sub Pop release, one has to appreciate the audacity required for a record label to release music by a band who does not exist. - MH

Date Played:  June 20 on The Midday Show with Cheryl Waters


SP0847

ZAK SALLY      

WHY WE HIDE  7" Single, 2009

“Why We Hide” was the first peek at the debut solo LP from Low’s Zak Sally. From 1994 to 2005, he served as the bassist for Low, the ruggedly handsome, Harrison-Ford-esque guy standing off to the side. Following a rocky few final years, Sally eventually made his departure in October 2005, focusing instead on his cartooning career. He started his own independent press, La Mano, and released a few books via Seattle’s own Fantagraphics Books. But he couldn’t escape music. The resulting full-length was appropriately titled Fear of Song. This single proves, Sally had nothing to be afraid of. — JH

Date Played:  June 20 on The Midday Show with Cheryl Waters


SP0846

SUNNY DAY REAL ESTATE      

DIARY (2009 EDITION), 2009

Not to be confused with the 2017 reissue of Diary, 2009 saw the first vinyl reissue of Sunny Day Real Estate's debut record on translucent red vinyl. The release also contained two bonus tracks, "8" and "9", both recorded by Kurt Bloch. 2009 marked the 15th anniversary of the record, so a new vinyl release seems a fitting tribute to one of the most successful LPs in Sub Pop's history. - MH

Date Played:  June 20 on The Morning Show with John Richards


SP0845

BEACH HOUSE      

TEEN DREAM, 2009

Beach House's Teen Dream is in many ways a watershed release for Sub Pop. While the roots of Sub Pop's slow embrace of pop music go back many years, Beach House remains one of the most commercially successful and critically acclaimed pop acts in Sub Pop's history, likely introducing the label to a new generation. Sub Pop's relationship with the band began with 2010's Teen Dream, on which Beach House hit a sweet spot with their brand of dream pop, crafting an utterly gorgeous record that features many of their signature tracks. From the languid melody of album opener "Zebra," to the yearning optimism of closing track "Take Care," it is no surprise that untold couples have fallen in love to Teen Dream. It is an album still worth swooning over, and arguably Beach House's finest achievement to date. - MH

Date Played:  June 20 on The Morning Show with John Richards


SP0844

TWILIGHT SINGERS      

DYNAMITE STEPS, 2009

Best known as Greg Dulli's creative outlet apart from Afghan Whigs, The Twilight Singers released their fifth full-length, Dynamite Steps, in 2011. This was their first LP on Sub Pop, in spite of Dulli's lengthy relationship with the label dating back to 1990's Up In It. The recording of Dynamite Steps was a quite collaborative affair, including guest spots from Ani DiFranco, Joseph Arthur, Petra Haden, and Mark Lanegan, among others. Dynamite Steps remains the final Twilight Singers LP, apart from a live record released later in 2011. Afghan Whigs officially reunited in December of 2011. - MH

Date Played:  June 20 on The Morning Show with John Richards


SP0843

A-FRAMES/CLIMAX GOLDEN      

AFGCT, 2009

This collaborative album combines the talents of A-Frames and Climax Golden Twins, resulting in a thoroughly strange release on Sub Pop. AFCGT mixes the unrelenting drones of Climax Golden Twin's work with layers of sound collage and guitar. It would not be an overstatement to characterize the album as upsetting, but it is also an intriguing, singular work of atmospherics. Upon its release, AFCGT was described by The Stranger's Dave Segal as "like being tackled by a 300-pound defensive end, repeatedly, for three minutes, then getting mercilessly tased." A cruel image, but admittedly not that far off. - MH

Date Played:  June 20 by DJ Abbie


SP0842

(NO RELEASE)

 


SP0841

DEERHUNTER      

"VOX CELESTE 5" 7" Single, 2009

Atlanta art-rockers Deerhunter were operating in a rare space in 2009. Theirs was the confluence of many, many styles — including but not nearly limited to Sonic Youth, the Breeders, Pylon, the Crystals, and Neu! — synthesized and spat out through the cracked kaleidoscope that is the artistic vision of Bradford Cox, arguably reaching its peak on the double LP opus Microcastle/Weird Era Cont.. Their Sub Pop Singles Club entry features reworked versions of two highlights from that weird, weird journey: The a-side, "Vox Celeste 5," carries all the punch of the version that appears on Weird Era Cont. with an added dose of clarity, while on the flip is "Microcastle Mellow 3," a swaying, psychedelic, acoustic-led version of Microcastle's title track. — MD

Date Played:  June 19 on Larry's Lounge with Larry Rose


SP0840

DUM DUM GIRLS     

I WILL BE, 2009

The fact that Dum Dum Girls’ name pays homage to both Iggy Pop’s “Dum Dum Boys” and The Vaselines’ Dum Dum almost tells you everything you need to know before you even put on their debut LP, I Will Be. The spirit of those artist are so core to the ethos of what principle songwriter Dee Dee, aka Kristin Welchez, envisioned for the project. Welchez started Dum Dum Girls as a solo outlet while she was still fronting the San Diego trio Grand Ole Party. After the band broke up in 2009, she shifted her focus to DDG, built up a new band lineup, and emerged with the project’s debut full-length I Will Be. The album originally was conceived as a concept record about an Italian women’s prison before the idea was abandoned after copyright issues with the album cover. Nevertheless, I Will Be still feels like an ambitious thesis statement for the project. At just under half an hour, Welchez crafts sublime pop-rock tunes with an underlying homage to the sounds of the 60s. Like Iggy and The Vaselines, she spits venom in her poppy prowess. Her punk rock heart still shines through in these summery, upbeat and timeless tunes. - DH

Date Played:  June 19 on Larry's Lounge with Larry Rose


SP0839

IRON & WINE     

NORFOLK 6/20/05 7" Single, 2009

For Record Store Day 2009, Sub Pop released this live full-length, limited to 5000 copies. As the title implies, the show was at The Norva in Norfolk, VA, part of the 2005 Woman King Tour. Frontman Sam Beam was joined by his sister Sarah on backing vocals. The set list was heavy on Woman King songs, with a few early LP additions and some rarities, like the “Passing Afternoon” single (#SP0664) B-Side "Communion Cups and Someone's Coat” and the at-the-time unreleased “The Trapeze Swinger.” Both eventually emerged on the 2009 singles comp LP Around The Well (#SP0808). — JH

Date Played:  June 19 on The Afternoon Show with Kevin Cole


SP0838

FLEET FOXES     

"MYKONOS / FALSE KNIGHT ON THE ROAD"  7" Single, 2009

“Mykonos” has been a calling card of Fleet Foxes since their earliest days – a fan favorite and a watershed moment for the folk balladeers. B-side “False Knight on the Road” is the real surprise treat on this 7-inch. The song is an adaptation of an ballad from the third volume of the 1903 British songbook anthology Child Ballads. Fleet Foxes aren’t the first modern artist to attempt to interpret this grim tale of a child meeting the devil in guise as a knight while traveling down the road – the first recording being cited as by The Blue Velvet Band. Fleet Foxes proclivity for medieval themes and iconography (as evidenced by the use of the Netherlandish Proverbs painting as the cover for their debut album) is an asset in interpreting this historical tune. Lead singer Robin Pecknold’s voice sounds like it’s being transported from a bygone era, trading in a traditional lute for the pensive tones of an acoustic guitar. - DH

Date Played:  June 19 on The Afternoon Show with Kevin Cole


SP0837

BLITZEN TRAPPER     

LIVE SESSION (ITUNES EXCLUSIVE), 2009

In ye ol’ times of 2009, you could tell a band was on the rise if they popped up with their own iTunes Live Session. Such is the case with Blitzen Trapper, who shared this six song set featuring songs from their debut album Furr. The band sounds pristine on these recordings, aptly recreating the clean mix of the originals and highlighting their prowess as live musicians. The band also shares a stripped down version of the title-track “Furr,” accompanied with only sweet harmonies before erupting into a full band fervor. - DH

Date Played:  June 19 on The Midday Show with Cheryl Waters


SP0836

TINY VIPERS     

LIFE ON EARTH, 2009

One of the most profound attributes attached to the music of Tiny Vipers — at least during the singer/songwriter project's days on Sub Pop — is the way empty space is used as an instrument. The lion's share of songs Jesy Fortino wrote for Hands Across the Void (SP0739) and Life on Earth are made up of just her voice, acoustic guitar, and a symphony of silence. The music's haunting quality is apparent from the former two components — especially Fortino's voice, which has the tone and timbre of a ghost taking residence in a long-abandoned cabin — but is wholly emphasized by the latter. The steady rumble of low drone can be detected in parts throughout the album (as well as metallic vocal processing on "Twilight Property"), but songs like the utterly arresting "Dreamer" only need the ache of Fortino's vocals, the melancholy circling of her guitar, and the dead air threatening to swallow everything whole. — MD

Date Played:  June 19 on The Midday Show with Cheryl Waters


SP0835

NO AGE     

LOSING FEELING, 2009

Following the twin successes of Nouns and Weirdo Rippers, No Age returned to their roots with the release of the Losing Feeling EP. Proceeding Weirdo Rippers, the band released a slew of quite good EPs, later culled for their first full-length. Losing Feeling finds the band continuing the approach that first brought them to Sub Pop's attention, while adding further diversity to their sound and approach. Both the titular "Losing Feeling," and excellent closer "You're a Target," remain highlights of the band's catalog. - MH

Date Played:  June 19 on The Morning Show with John Richards


SP0834

NIRVANA     

BLEACH: DELUXE EDITION, 2009

It doesn’t feel like much of a hyperbole to call Bleach the biggest album in the Sub Pop catalog. And if it’s not the biggest, it may be one of the most significant in term’s of the label’s history given Nirvana’s historic emergence from the underground to dominating airwaves (a type of ascension that is nearly impossible to replicate in the digital age, making them the last of the breed of phenom). So it’s not really a surprise that the label would reissue the band’s debut album on its 20th anniversary. The album gets the full remastered treatment, overseen by original producer Jack Endino.

In lieu of bonus tracks and demos like a typical deluxe edition affair, Sub Pop opted to include a second disc featuring a full Nirvana performance at Portland’s Pine Street Theatre on Feb. 9, 1990. It’s a rare snapshot of the band before they’d become a cultural force, but you can feel what the band would become in this freewheeling, walloping performance. Kurt Cobain’s voice sounds on the brink of cracking apart at any moment, yet keeps it together through particularly pissed off renditions of “School” and non-Bleach singles “Dive” and “Sappy.” It’s hard to believe that in just a year’s time the band would be headlining stadiums and knocking Michael Jackson off the top Billboard spot. The myth of Nirvana will be perpetuated and discussed forever, but recordings like this give context to just how massive this band sounded and how unlikely it was that they would become so massive themselves. - DH

Date Played:  June 19 on The Morning Show with John Richards


SP0833

FLIGHT OF THE CONCHORDS     

"PETROV, YELYENA AND ME" ITUNES SINGLE, 2009

So we thought Flight of the Conchords were at their freakiest with “I Told You I Was Freaky,” but really “Petrov, Yelyena, & Me” might be the most obtuse and disturbing song in duo’s catalog. The song tells the tale of three Russian sailors lost at sea before the narrator “Burthult” is consumed alive by his friends Petrov and Yelyena, before eventually poisoning himself with arsenic so they would die from eating his flesh. Yeah, it’s pretty weird. - DH

Date Played:  June 18 on The Afternoon Show with Troy Nelson


SP0832

FLIGHT OF THE CONCHORDS     

"I TOLD YOU I WAS FREAKY" ITUNES SINGLE, 2009

The title track to Flight of the Conchords’ sophomore album is an apt homage to the freakiest freak to ever freak, the Purple One himself – Prince. Bret McKenzie does his best to channel the sexiness of Controversy as he give some seriously kinky propositions like, “Let's take a photo of a goat in a boat and then we can float in the moat and be freaky.” Wow, how did this one get away without a parental advisory sticker? Super freaky. - DH

Date Played:  June 18 on The Afternoon Show with Troy Nelson


SP0831

FLIGHT OF THE CONCHORDS     

"FASHION IS DANGER" ITUNES SINGLE, 2009

Alright, everybody loves “Business Time” and “Hiphopopotamus vs. Rhymenoceros,” but allow me to make the argument that “Fashion Is Danger” may be one of the best Flight of the Conchords songs. The 80s pastiche of the song beats with a new romantic heart as the band warns of the perils of looking so damn good. The allusions to Ronald Regan and Margaret Thatcher are hilariously 80s enough and the duo plays up to the dramatization of the era expertly. But more than being funny like every other FotC track… this song just sounds so damn good. Those beefy synthesizers blurting and echoing out against their sneering, monotone vocals would make a hell of a Human League hit. Strip this song out of the realm of “parody” and it still holds up, kitsch and everything. - DH

Date Played:  June 18 on The Afternoon Show with Troy Nelson


SP0830

FRUIT BATS     

THE RUMINANT BAND, 2009

Calling Fruit Bats a “band” has been a sort of stretch. Throughout their career, songwriter Eric D. Johnson has been the only consistent band member with a rotating cast of musicians coming and going between records and tours. But with The Ruminant Band, Johnson solidified a lineup and recorded it in the studio – giving a much more tangible and physical feel to the record in comparison to previous releases. In a 2016 interview with Blurred Visionary, Johnson says, “I had put together a band and it was very much all recorded live and it has a band sound and we toured on it in that way. People really loved that and I was surprised how much people responded to that. I think it’s just being a product of being a child of the 1990’s indie rock stuff. I liked bands like Guided by Voices and Palace, where it’s a dude, but it has a band name. That’s kind of where it all came from for me.”

Much like the bright cartoon landscape that adorns the cover, The Ruminant Band is a vivid and eye-popping collection of life affirming rock sounds. Johnson’s voice feels giddy against the live instrumentation, at time even channeling “Going to California” era Robert Plant. It’s maybe the most alive the band has felt and a joyful high point in their career. - DH

Date Played:  June 18 on The Afternoon Show with Troy Nelson


SP0829

FLIGHT OF THE CONCHORDS     

"DEMON WOMAN" ITUNES SINGLE, 2009

Who hasn’t found themselves caught in an ominous relationship where your partner insists you cosplay as Art Garfunkel? Okay, so maybe most of us haven’t. But that’s the scenario Flight of the Conchords’ Jemaine Clement find himself in in the episode “Prime Minister” from the band’s eponymous HBO show. As things start to get out of hand, Clement and bandmate Bret McKenzie perform this homage to Cliff Richardsd’s “Devil Woman,” donning freaky skeleton costumes and lots of leather. - DH

Date Played:  June 18 on The Midday Show with Stevie Zoom


SP0828

FLIGHT OF THE CONCHORDS     

"WE'RE BOTH IN LOVE WITH A SEXY LADY" ITUNES SINGLE, 2009

There’s nothing that can put a bigger wedge in a friendship than both parties falling for the same person. That’s exactly what happens with “We’re Both In Love With A Sexy Lady.” The Conchords start positive enough, happy for each other as they both describe a woman they’ve made a romantic connection with. But as the song progresses, they realize they’re talking about the same woman (and going even further, they’re talking about the same moment – meeting a woman trying to find her epileptic dog). Suddenly the mood changes. In the “Love Is A Weapon Of Choice” episode of their HBO show, this all culminates in a duel for Barbara’s affection (or what is it Brahbrah?). - DH

Date Played:  June 18 on The Midday Show with Stevie Zoom


SP0827

FLIGHT OF THE CONCHORDS     

"CAROL BROWN" ITUNES SINGLE, 2009

Apparently Jemaine Clement, who once penned songs like “Ladies of the World” and “Most Beautiful Girl (In The Room)”, is not so well versed in the ways of love. On “Carol Brown,” he sings about his past failed relationships – complete with a choir of all his ex-girlfriends. The song originally appeared in the Flight of the Conchords episode “Unnatural Love,” in which Clement falls in love with an Australian woman named Keitha (an apparent taboo for a New Zealander like himself). He tries to take a chance on love, despite both their friends trying to keep them apart. However it doesn’t go well in the end, with Keitha robbing him blind. I guess Keitha will be joining that choir now too. - DH

Date Played:  June 18 on The Midday Show with Stevie Zoom


SP0826

FLIGHT OF THE CONCHORDS     

"FRIENDS" ITUNES SINGLE, 2009

Flight of the Conchords get a little bit of help from their friends on “Friends.” Rhys Darby (who plays their manager Murray on the duo’s eponymous HBO show) and comedian Jim Gaffigan create the a cappella foundation for this ode to platonic companionship. It’s hard to not have your heart warmed with cute lines like “If you get drunk and vomit on me, I’ll make sure you get home safely” and “If you get murdered I’ll avenge your death.” I believe this is what the kids these days call “#friendshipgoals.” - DH

Date Played:  June 18 on The Morning Show with John Richards


SP0825

BLITZEN TRAPPER     

DESTROYER OF THE VOID, 2009

Portland’s Blitzen Trapper embrace their most ambitious tendencies with Destroyer of the Void. In their previous works like Furr, the band openly embraced aesthetics and Americana themes of the 60s and 70s, but on their second record they fully immerse themselves in decades long gone. Critics were quick to pinpoint comparisons to Queen and Electric Light Orchestra, and one listen to the title-track and you can feel that grandiose vision coming into focus withs its sprawling, multi-part structure. It’s maybe the biggest the band has ever sounded and had this album come in the halcyon days of the 70s, it’s easy to imagine them thriving alongside the likes of their inspirations Neil Young and The Band. - DH

Date Played:  June 18 on The Morning Show with John Richards


SP0824

FLIGHT OF THE CONCHORDS     

"HURT FEELINGS" ITUNES SINGLE, 2009

Rappers have feelings, too! Though Drake just recently dropped his not-a-Pusha-T-response-track “I’m Upset,” hip hop heads will remember that Flight of the Conchords did it first with “Hurt Feelings.” The track opens up the comedy duo’s sophomore album I Told You I Was Freaky, starting with banter about the the Kiwi folksters not being real rappers and revealing that they are, in fact, vincible. You have to feel for Bret and Jemaine here. It’d hurt my feelings too if someone made fun of me for being too small to fit into a wetsuit or if no one complimented my casserole. - DH

Date Played:  June 18 on The Morning Show with John Richards


SP0823

FLIGHT OF THE CONCHORDS     

"SUGALUMPS" ITUNES SINGLE, 2009

Flight of the Conchords pen an ode to the male bulge with “Sugalumps.” There are too many double entendres in this song about male genitalia than you can shake a stick at. While much of it is pretty on the nose, a personally favorite line is “my dungarees make her Hungary.” But really, how can you not want to sing along to the chorus of “All the ladies, they want a taste of my sugalumps”? Okay, I hear you. I can see why you wouldn’t want to do that. - DH

Date Played:  June 18 on The Morning Show with John Richards


SP0822

BLACK LIPS     

"DISCONNECTION"  7" Single, 2009

The merry pranksters of the Atlanta garage-rock scene, Black Lips have been just as well-known for their onstage antics — some which go far beyond the edge of full-frontal nudity — as their music; in some circles, probably more so. Thankfully, "Disconnection," their contribution to Sub Pop Singles Club, was released in that fruitful period where the quality of their music could hold up against regularly vomiiting during their sets. The song is very much in the vein of the funky soul/garage of their old friend King Khan, with piano twinkles and drunken slurring heavily peppered all over. The b-side, "99 Victs," is an enormously catchy garage-punk tune plucked right out of the playbook of their best work. — MD

Date Played:  June 17 by DJ Evie


SP0821

ARTHUR & YU    

DON'T PISS INTO THE FIRE  7" Single, 2009

Given the title “Don’t Piss On The Fire,” you’d think this track would come from a hardcore punk act like Pissed Jeans. Instead, we’re treated to the blissfully, stripped down tunes of Seattle folk act Arthur & Yu. The song feels more akin to Woody Guthrie, invoking a certain Americana with Grant Olsen’s wobbling voice tipping around his open chords. Likewise, b-side “Magic Mtn” sweeps with delicate harmonies and an airy mood, truly feeling like some sort of magic. - DH

Date Played:  June 17 by DJ Evie


SP0820

BLITZEN TRAPPER    

BLACK RIVER KILLER EP, 2009

Named after and featuring the murderous ballad from the band’s Furr LP, Blitzen Trapper offers up some more treacherous treats with the Black River Killer EP. The six new songs on this collection were originally featured on a CDR the band would sell during the 2008 tour, getting their first “official” release here. You can see why they’d want to resurface these songs for a larger audience. Each track feels like it could’ve been slipped in on Furr, with their chugging acoustic guitars and swirling synthesizer leads that are oddly reminiscent of west coast g-funk. - DH

Date Played:  June 17 by Stevie Zoom


SP0819

BLITZEN TRAPPER    

WAR IS PLACEBO/BOOKSMART BABY 7" Single, 2009

As you may have noticed in this part of the Sub Pop count-up, the label released a slew of singles for Record Store Day in 2009 from some of their flagship artists at the time. This 7-inch from Portland's Blitzen Trapper was limited to 1,500 copies and was pressed to pink and white vinyl. "War Is Placebo" leans into the band's country tendencies, with a gorgeously twangy slide guitar and vocal harmonies. - DH

Date Played:  June 17 by Stevie Zoom


SP0818

PISSED JEANS    

KING OF JEANS, 2009

Sludgy, histrionically loud punk music isn't normally the standard method of sensationalizing the mundane, but Pissed Jeans have made a pretty solid career out of it. The Pennsylvania band's second full-length for Sub Pop (their third overall) is a towering monument made of stacked papers in a pile and the type of hardcore your parents would implore you to turn the hell off. Matt Korvette stands in front as the bard for too-smart-for-this-stupid-job 9-to-5 office dwellers, shouting and sneering about the emotional exhaustion from doing the same thing every Monday through Friday, hair loss, and what is likely the creepiest song ever about getting a professional massage. — MD

Date Played:  June 16 on Sonic Reducer


SP0817

FLIGHT OF THE CONCHORDS    

PENCILS IN THE WIND 7" Single, 2009

Put your lighters up and have your handkerchief ready. Flight of the Conchords wax poetic about the meaning of life with their Record Store Day 7-inch featuring “Pencils in the Wind.” The song includes heart-tugging metaphors like “Lives are like retractable pencils/If you push them too far they're gonna break” and “Love is like a roll of tape/It's real good for making two things one.” The social commentary doesn’t stop there. B-side “Albi The Racist Dragon” tells the life-changing tale of a bigoted magical beast who is so touched by the kindness of an Albanian boy that he cries a dragon tear that turns into a jellybean of all the colors of the rainbow. And suddenly, Albi wasn’t racist anymore. - DH

Date Played:  June 16 by Gabriel Teodros


SP0816

VETIVER    

WISHING WELL/PAY NO MIND 7" Single, 2009

Another Record Store Day single, Vetiver grooves as hard as you can with an acoustic guitar on the previously unreleased track “Wishing Well.” B-side “Pay No Mind” previously appeared on the “Everyday” 7-inch, but the bluesy jam pairs nicely here. There were only 1,500 copies of this single pressed, so hopefully you snagged one...in 2009. - DH

Date Played:  June 16 by Gabriel Teodros


SP0815

FLEET FOXES    

FLEET FOXES + SUN GIANT EP, 2009

Do you ever wish you could just have both Fleet Foxes self-titled debut and Sun Giant on the same disc? Do you live in Australia? Well, then this release is for you! This Aussie version of the band’s debut gives you just that. What a convenient way to enjoy some of your melancholy folk jams, uh, mate. - DH

Date Played:  June 16 on Friday Night with Michele Myers


SP0814

OBITS    

I CAN'T LOSE/MILITARY MADNESS  7" Single, 2009

Released in one of the earliest iterations of Record Store Day, this 7-inch from the Obits was limited to only 1,500 copies. A-side “I Can’t Lose” features the band’s trademark garage rock classicism, featuring chugging riffs and a beastly sing-a-long chorus. Keeping with tradition of “the good ol’ days,” the band opted to perform a cover for the b-side. Their take on Graham Nash’s “Military Madness” puts a harsher, psychedelic tone to the 70s classic protest tune. - DH

Date Played:  June 15 on Friday Night with Michele Myers


SP0813

FLIGHT OF THE CONCHORDS    

"ANGELS"  ITUNES SINGLE, 2009

To truly understand what Flight of the Conchords are trying to say on “Angels” from I Told You I Was Freaky, I find it best to turn to lyric annotation site Genius. As user Leftoutside15 explains, the first line, “There are angels in the clouds doing it,” actually means “up there in the clouds are angels having sex.” Wow. Kinda changes what you think of the song, right?

The New Zealand comedy duo’s homage to celestial intercourse is one of the most delicately constructed song in their catalog, with Jemaine Clement and Bret Mckenzie elegantly cooing over acoustic guitars. Anecdotally, when I saw FotC perform at Sasquatch! Music Festival in 2008, actual raindrops fell from the sky after the band sang “Up there they're playing the lovin' game/Makin' rain.” I guess miracles really can happen. - DH

Date Played:  June 15 on The Afternoon Show with Kevin Cole


SP0812

DNTEL    

DUMB LUCK REMIXES, 2009

DNTEL’s 2007 LP gets the remix treatment with this eight song collection. While not every track is reimagined from the original LP, producers from all around the world take a stab at putting their own mark on the spacious beats, including Metronome, Danton Eeprom, Lawrence, Gudren Gut, and more. - DH

Date Played:  June 15 on The Afternoon Show with Kevin Cole


SP0811

MARK SULTAN    

HOLD ON  7" Single, 2009

Mark Sultan, the Quebecois garage-rock lifer, has had skin in the game since 1989. If you haven't heard his work in cult favorites the Spaceshits, perhaps you recognize him as the "BBQ" in The King Khan & BBQ Show or any of the dozen different bands and aliases he has performed under. Released under the name that's as close to the one his parents gave him as we're going to get, Sultan delivers a chunk of rock worthy of the Nuggets compilation with "Hold On," a sublime garage-pop tune fit for a sock hop with the dirtiest dance floor imaginable. On the b-side is a twilit, glockenspiel-assisted cover of Joe Meek's "I Hear a New World," which is somehow not quite as weird as the original. -- MD

Date Played:  June 15 on The Afternoon Show with Kevin Cole


SP0810

THE VASELINES    

ENTER THE VASELINES (DELUXE EDITION), 2009

Is this a reissue? A reimagining? An expanded deluxe edition? Yes. All of the above. In 2009, Sub Pop revisited The Vaselines’ cult classic compilationThe Way of the Vaselines for a reissue but just couldn’t stop there. With years of archival material to pull from, Enter The Vaselines expands on the original trackless and includes everything from the Son of A Gun and Dying For it EPs, as well as their LP Dum Dum, plus demos and two sets of live recordings on this three disc set. They even included a new cover image to boot, making this whole set feel like an entirely new work from the classic act. - DH

Date Played:  June 15 on The Midday Show with Troy Nelson


SP0809

TYVEK    

DUCK BLINDS  7" Single, 2009

Exceedingly raw and too smart for their own good, Tyvek's eccentric brand of lo-fi garage-punk has been frequently compared to underground legends Urinals and Swell Maps, unwilling to let something as frivolous as recording quality stand in the way of their creativity. "Duck Blinds" is indicative of this idea, taking poetic, hastily scrawled observations, gnashing guitars, and drums sounding like they're being played as not to wake the neighbors upstairs and fashioning them into a moony and swaying soundtrack for a lazy afternoon. Led by the vision of Kevin Boyer, the band — long associated with Detroit even after Boyer decamped to Philadelphia — summons the artful-but-rudimentary styles of civic forebears such as the Gories and the White Stripes, as the single's b-side "Pamphlet" can attest. — MD

Date Played:  June 15 on The Midday Show with Troy Nelson


SP0808

IRON & WINE   

AROUND THE WELL, 2009

When Iron & Wine wasn’t churning out seminal albums in the 2000s folk revival, songwriter Sam Beam was continually churning out jaw-dropping singles and covers in-between. With Around The Well, he finally collected them all in one spot. This compilation features notable covers of The Postal Services’ “Such Great Heights,” The Flaming Lips’ “Waitin’ for a Superman,” New Orders’ “Love Vigilantes,” and Stereolab’s “Peng! 33.” Not just that, but there’s some Iron & Wine fan favorites thrown in the mix in this double-disc set, particularly the massive epic “The Trapeze Swinger.” - DH

Date Played:  June 15 on The Morning Show with John RIchards


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CIRCLE   

ODOTTAMATON  7" Single, 2010

Finnish experimental art rock outfit Circle bring a certain brand of weirdness that harkens back to the label’s early days with their Singles Club 7-inch. The band has been churning out weirdo kraut rock anthems since 1991, but this 2009 single sounds like the band still amped up on youthful energy, crafting squirrellyy rhythms in their basement. Their music moves and fiery speeds with feverish breaks and swells, making it not for the faint of heart. - DH

Date Played:  June 15 by Atticus


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EUGENE MIRMAN  

GOD IS A 12 YEAR OLD BOY WITH ASPERGERS, 2010

In their press release, Sub Pop referred to Eugene Mirman’s third comedy record as “possibly offensive, but most likely charming,” and that pretty much hits the nail on the head. Recorded in Chicago, Mirman makes jokes about the city’s history for being the landmark location of Abraham Lincoln losing his virginity and the smokiness of the room. It’s quintessential Mirman comedy, embracing absurdity and pushing his own comedic limits. - DH

Date NOT Played:  June 15


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THE ALBUM LEAF  

A CHORUS OF STORYTELLERS, 2010

So much of The Album Leaf’s music is about defining a sense of mood and space. And that sense of space is crucial to the project’s fifth album, A Chorus Of Storytellers, which was recorded in Seattle during the cold of February and mixed in Iceland in the warmth of June. While the project has primarily just been Jimmy Lavelle since its inception, A Chorus Of Storytellers is the first Album Leaf record to be recorded with a full band. That presence is felt in the music, which feels much more propulsive than Lavelle’s previous works and ventures closer to post-rock territory. - DH

Date Played:  June 15 by Atticus


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BLUES CONTROL  

SNOW DAY  7" Single, 2009

Avant garde experimental duo Blues Control get in the holiday spirit with this far out, not-so-merry 7-inch for Sub Pop’s Singles Club. The expansive instrumental “Snow Day” personifies the gracefulness of falling snow with wobbling piano notes and tape loops, with a slight homage to “Jingle Bells” alluded to in sections of the melody. “Paul’s Winter Solstice” also embraces the group’s ambient tendencies, utilizing sleigh bells against droning synthesizers. Throw this disc on at your next family holiday gathering and tell your grandma about your love of Boards of Canada – she’ll definitely appreciate it. - DH

Date Played:  June 15 by Atticus


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GRAND ARCHIVES 

KEEP IN MIND FRANKENSTEIN, 2009

Seattle’s Grand Archives returned with another set of a breezy, quiet folk rock with their sophomore album Keep In Mind Frankenstein. This time around the band opted to write in the studio, recording at Paradise Sound Studios in the semi-remote town of Index, Washington. The album doesn’t stretch much beyond their self-titled debut, but executes the band’s dreamy vision. Lead vocalist Mat Brooke even manages a semi-Carissa’s Wierd reunion in a duet with former bandmate Sera Cahoone on "Siren Echo Valley (Part 1).” After the release of the album, the band started working on a third LP that was rumored to be titled Villains. The album has yet to materialize, but the band has also never officially broken up so, you never know! - DH

Date Played:  June 14 by DJ Shannon


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(NO RELEASE)

 


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LOW 

"SANTA'S COMING OVER" / "THE COMING OF JAH" 7" Single, 2008

Leave it to Low to come through with one of the most fearful and anxiety inducing Christmas songs of all time. “Santa’s Coming Over” feels like a David Lynch reinterpretation of the classic The Night Before Christmas. Santa is not something to bring gifts; he’s bringing nightmares. To make the whole affair even weirder, the b-side “The Coming of Jah” sees the band feeling some positive vibrations with their reggae Christmas tune. It must be a trip hanging out with Low around the holidays. The single also came with a puns-out paper ornament, so you can decorate the tree while you have an existential crisis about jolly ol’ Saint Nick. - DH

Date Played:  June 14 on The Afternoon Show with Troy Nelson


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