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13 Mar
Surf Drums – All There Is

Birmingham’s Surf Drums released their “Black Tambourine” 12″ in 1987 on Joe Foster’s Kaleidoscope Sound label (most famous for releasing “The New Record By My Bloody Valentine”). While the A-side, “Black Tambourine,” is great in that c86 vain, the B-side “All There Is” is really the track that makes this record worth owning. Total Byrds-y perfection.

The Surf Drums were David Kehoe (guitars and vocals), Annie Taylor (organ), Richard Left (guitar), Colin Packwood (bass), and Paul Tibbits (drums). After the Surf Drums split, Annie, Colin and Paul went on to form Korova Milk Bar (Subway/Chapter 22 band). KMB research led me to a post from Nancy’s I’m Not Always So Stupid blog back in 2007. Fun fact: Annie Taylor married Richard March (bassist of PWEI).

Listen to Surf Drums – All There Is

click to enlarge

10 Mar
Thieves Like Us – Play Music

Today we celebrate the release date of the new Shelflife signing, Thieves Like Us. Their debut album “Play Music” was written, recorded and mixed in the cities of New York, Berlin, Vienna, London, Rio De Janeiro and Stockholm and sounds like an electro-pop soundtrack at a late night discotheque. I first fell in love with their songs from a unreleased demo a few years back. I hadn’t been so impressed with a group of recordings since The Radio Dept’s “Lesser Matters.” After writing to the band merely as a fan, excited that “Play Music” was finally coming out properly in Europe, here we are some four months later releasing their debut LP on Shelflife.

It’s obviously a different vibe than the usual Shelflife artist, but Thieves Like Us are still a pop band at heart. We’re all about releasing records we think are special and this one will not disappoint. The limited vinyl LPs are in shops as of today, while the CD version is coming in April (presale on sooner).

$10.00 + shipping


Read a great review from Eardrums.

Here’s the video for “Desire”

Here’s the video for “Fass”

8 Mar
Hamburg P!O!P! weekender

There are just too many good international pop shows happening in the upcoming months (and not enough vacation days for me)… The Hamburg P!O!P! Weekender, the SF & NY popfests, ATP… The Hamburg Weekender makes me especially sad that I’m missing it. Four nights from April 16-19 featuring amazing bands like Days, Cocoanut Groove, Bricolage, Liechtenstein, Northern Portrait, Manhattan Love Suicides, etc. Maybe you can go and tell me all about it.

5 Mar
The Wild Swans – English Electric Lightning

Good news! The Wild Swans have a new single out now called “English Electric Lightning.” It’s released on 10″ vinyl on the Occultation label in a limited edition of 900 individually-numbered copies. The sleeve artwork was done by keyboardist Ged Quinn and is a little, um… interesting. The current line-up includes only two original members, Paul Simpson and Ged Quinn — unfortunately no Jerry Kelly. You can preview both tracks on their site: English Electric Lightning / The Coldest Winter For A Hundred Years and order the release here. I’m loving “English Electric Lightning!”

5 Mar
Endless Bob Brown

I recently discovered the fantastic 80s band, Endless Bob Brown, thanks to Stephen Walsall’s fantastic Please Rain Fall blog. Their song “Take Your Time” is so amazingly good (!!) and has been playing in the office here on repeat. I so want this on vinyl, but unfortunately none of their material was properly released. Such a shame.

Stephen recently posted more tracks from the band on the blog, including a song called “It’s Harder” – WOW! Where have they been all my life?

Listen to Endless Bob Brown – Take Your Time

Head over to the ‘Please Rain Fall’ blog and download the rest!

4 Mar
Uncapped: Magic Marker Records 10 Years Later

I just received my copy of the Magic Marker 10th anniversary 7″ collection in the mail. Super impressed with the packaging (designed by Todd at Pencrush)! Being a packaging “nerd” myself I can really appreciate the time and energy that went into this. The release features five 7″s in a lovely hand-screened sleeve, pressed in a limited edition of just 200 copies. Magic Marker bands covering the songs of other Magic Marker artists. All for $20. Well done! Definitely pick one up while you still can!

(Sorry my amateur-ish photography doesn’t do the sleeve justice.)

Release details:

7″ #1
The Owls “Springtime Fall” (Dear Nora)
Walker Kong “Bells” (The Bats)

7″ #2
The Manhattan Love Suicides “Superboy & Supergirl” (Tullycraft)
Dear Nora “Air” (The Owls)

7″ #3
BOAT “Nosebleeders on the Track” (The Faintest Ideas)
Galactic Heroes “Former Hero” (Heikki)

Tullycraft “Welcome to the Big Ten Conference” (Vehicle Flips)
Birds of California (Lunchbox) “Kick It back” (The Manhattan Love Suicides)

7″” #5
The Gazetteers “Ordinary Day” (Lunchbox)
Kissing Book “Any Kind of Pain” (The Best Friends Group)

Order a copy here

2 Mar
eBay auctions… round 2

We’ve started listing round 2 of our cd eBay auctions. We’ll be posting some each day (at least that’s the plan). Loads of compilation cds coming up and then we’re onto selling more dupe 7″s… about 200 or so that we ended up with when Laura and I combined our collections. Come help fund some upcoming Shelflife projects and hopefully get a few nice records at the same time!

Check out our eBay auctions

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