September 26, 2008

Today's Hotness: The Coctails, Los Campesinos, Ulrich Schnauss

The Coctails
>> Wha? Apparently defunct indie pop superlatives The Coctails are reuniting to perform at the group's former label's Sweet Sixteen party tonight; there are a few more details here at the Carrot Top Records site. Said party will occur both tonight and tomorrow at Chicago's The Hideout, and proceeds after expenses will benefit the Accelerated Cure Project for Multiple Sclerosis. To catch you up, The Coctails were Chicago pop icon Archer Prewitt's band prior to his joining Sam Prekop in The Sea And Cake. There is a very informative Wikipedia entry right here, and we highly recommend it to your attention. Most importantly, The Coctails released several wonderful records during its initial seven-year run between 1988 and 1995, the most wonderful perhaps being its self-titled set. That collection was released on CD in 1996 and opens with an amazing quartet of songs, "When I Come Around," "Circles," "City Sun" and "Cadali." Because it is one of our very favorites, here is "Cadali."

The Coctails -- "Cadali" -- The Coctails
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[buy Coctails records from Carrot Top right here]

>> Things we're not sure we knew about Cardiff, Wales-based indie pop septet Los Campesinos!' forthcoming sophomore set We Are Beatiful, We Are Doomed include: it will be released Oct. 27; it will not be promoted with any singles; it will have a single world-wide pressing and when it sells out it will be deleted; it will be packaged in a rectangular box; the box will also contain a DVD containing a self-made documentary of summer festival dates in Norway and Japan; the box will also contain a 30-page 'zine and exclusive poster. What's more, Los Campesinos! is touring the UK and Ireland in October with Times New Viking and No Age, and the three bands have created a web site at that aspires to be the hub for all things related to the tour. Apparently there are myriad opportunities for fans to publish their own editorial and visual content to the site, and the site will also act as a clearinghouse for contests and insidery-information. Three tracks from We Are Beautiful, We Are Doomed are already streaming at the band's MySpace dojo right here, including the surprisingly dense and glorious title track, so check 'em out.

>> Something else we didn't know: London-based label Independiente will make available Oct. 17 remastered and expanded versions of two records from electropop genius Ulrich Schnauss. Far Away Trains Passing By, originally released in 2001, will be packaged with a bonus disc, and 2003's A Strangely Isolated Place will include two bonus tracks. In addition to the physical articles, both sets will be available via the usual digital music storefronts. The reissue of Far Away Trains Passing By appears to have the very same track listing as the 2001 Domino issue in our collection, except the Independiente version contains one additional track on disc two, "A Million Miles Away." Disc two of that collection deserves special notice because it contains our all-time-favorite Ulrich Schnauss jam, "As If You've Never Been Away." The bonus tracks included with the reissue of A Strangely Isolated Place are two remixes by former Cocteau Twins guy Robin Guthrie for the tracks "Gone Forever" and "On My Own." This week Independiente issued the digital-only Schnauss EP Stars, and to celebrate all of this the label is letting fans download "A Letter From Home" from A Strangely Isolated Place for free, so have at it.

Ulrich Schauss -- "A Letter From Home" -- A Strangely Isolated Place [2008 Reissue]
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[pre-order Ulrich Schnauss records from Independiente right here]

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