Filed under: Unwound
As a robust rock underground got swallowed alive by the Major Label Industrial Complex, the very autonomous Unwound—Olympia, Washington’s Great Noise Hope—toed the troublesome line between pay check and Check Engine light. Captured in the gaps of a ruthless touring schedule, defining fourth and fifth albums The Future of Whatand Repetition were issued in the back-to-back springs of 1995 and ’96. Both find the band severing their post-hardcore roots, for gripping detours into Echoplex, kraut, D&B, and Mingus, as guided by a sun-worn copy of Book Your Own Fuckin’ Life.
No Energy collects both of these 1990s masterworks, beginning with Justin Trosper’s home-made haircut stabs on “New Energy,” continuing with Vern Rumsey’s reanimating bass on “Corpse Pose,” and closing in a wall of Sara Lund crash cymbals on “For Your Entertainment.” This 33-song collection is buttressed by singles and period live tracks, a pile of double-exposed photographs, and a 10,000 word essay by latter-day Unwound diarist David Wilcox.
We’re finally accepting pre-orders for this beast, and as is our wont, we’ve created another stellar limited edition bonus LP only available from our website.
6/30/1999: REYKJAVIK, ICELAND
In the summer of 1999, Unwound spent two months crisscrossing Europe. They began in Brussels, hit Germany, the Netherlands, and France twice each, spent a week in London and cut a Peel Session, and finally touched down in Reykjavik, Iceland, for a gig and session at RUV. The trio was on their way to recording their opus, and lingered just long enough in the past to revisit a few marquee highlights, stretching them out into droney sonatas drenched in feedback. A handsome hand screened jacket houses the affair, utilizing the logo of noted Icelandic record store Hljómalind.
Want it? Go here. Orders will begin shipping the second week of September. Not convinced? Watch this:
Filed under: Unwound
Although Darkscorch Canticles was just issued yesterday, we’re already moving full speed into our next opus, Unwound box #2: Rat Conspiracy. Vice just published a glowing review and interview with Sara and Justin, which reminded us that we needed sit down and detail all the elements of the box. As with Kid Is Gone, we spared no expense combining the ’90s DIY aesthetic with our own, which this video illustrates perfectly:
Let’s go through those contents SLOWLY:
LP 1: FAKE TRAIN
Were, Are And Was Or Is.
Pure Pain Sugar
Star Spangled Hell
LP2: NEW PLASTIC IDEAS
Entirely Different Matters
What Was Wound
All Souls Day
LP 3: RAT CONSPIRACY
We’ve replicated the covers and inserts for Fake Train and New Plastic Ideas down to the tiniest detail. For Rat Conspiracy, we blew up the cover to their Troubleman Unlimited LP and reprinted an original setlist and flyer.
The outer box and inner jackets are printed on a 60lb kraft in rich black.
The 24 page page booklet is crammed with period photos (from various house and DIY space shows), and essay by Sara Lund, and a longer piece by David Wilcox.
But wait, there’s more! Order from our website and we’ll send you a bonus LP of Fake Train‘s original Red House demo, cut about a month before the album was tracked. It’s raw and unleashed, and a bit rough around the edges, but it’s an incredible document of these early days.
BONUS LP: RED HOUSE DEMOS
Pure Pain Sugar
New Radio Hit
Filed under: Unwound
We’re about five weeks out from release of our second of four Unwound box sets, and we just couldn’t wait to floss all the bits of this year-in-the-making album. If it moves to quickly for you, use this handy guide to discern what comes inside:
Fake Train LP (with replica sleeve and insert)
New Plastic Ideas LP (with replica sleeve and insert)
Rat Conspiracy LP (1993-1994 anthology of 7”s, stray comp. tracks, plus live and unreleased extras)
Set list from Odd Fellows Hall, 1/30/1993
1994 Troubleman Unlimited flyer
24 page booklet filled with photographs and lengthy essays by David Wilco and Sara Lund
Sturdy box wrapped in buff kraft paper
Download code for entire 32 track box
Faked Train LP (Original demo for Fake Train recorded by Tim Green, ltd to 1000)
Filed under: Dynamic, Good God!, Iasos, JR., Lists, Medusa, Mind & Matter, Unwound
Filed under: Unwound
As of not that many hours ago, Kid Is Gone streams gratis over at Pitchfork Advance. Our own Adam Luksetich culled out the grotty vid loops—”Justin drinks coffee” plus “Justin screams and writhes” plus others—which you get to scrutinize while you listen to Unwound. Skip to Track #29, “Antifreeze,” to get the music to sound like most of what you’re looking at.
Unstreamed, and still available to vinyl buyers only, is the very limited bonus live Unwound LP, about which you gotta admit we’ve told you before.
After a year of tearing out our hair and losing our hearing, the first Unwound box arrives at finer retailers today. We’ve detailed the track list elsewhere, but as you might be able to tell from the above, there’s more to Kid Is Gone than 35 brutal post-hardcore songs and a few black and white photos. Here’s what you get for $40:
A 24-page booklet
3 replica covers
1 download card
A shit ton of chip board.
We’ve still got copies of the limited deluxe edition, which includes a bonus fourth LP, only available on our website.
Kid has arrived. Feel the chipboard majesty of rugged slipcase, inner sleeves, and Henry Owings’ stunning box-sized booklet coursing through our YouTube. Or don’t. Give it a try. Late ’80s VHS fidelity does different things to different people, we have to admit.
We’ve left the bonus live LP un-unboxed, for that joy is yours alone, pre-orderers.
One of the awesome parts about working with somewhat contemporary artists is the fastidious self-archiving. Unwound’s Justin Trosper and Sara Lund saved thousands of photos, flyers, clippings, and ‘zines over their ten year run, but nothing is more impressive then the VHS collection that Lund had stored in a Trader Joes-brand brown bag. We recently had the entire caboodle transferred and are slowly going through the footage in an attempt to catalog for a possible Blu-Ray in 2015.
To hold you over until then, we cut together the scant amount of footage featuring original Unwound drummer Brandt Sandeno into this mini video—which does double duty as a reminder to pre-order Kid Is Gone, the first of four box sets we’re issuing by these unsung heroes from Olympia, Washington, over the next two years. Check it out:
The 3LP box is running in a limited edition of 4000 copies worldwide, but we’re also selling a deluxe edition on our website only, that includes an extremely limited bonus 4th LP, a live Sandeno-drummed set recorded in July of 2001. We’re more than halfway sold out, so if you want a copy, don’t just sit on your hands and hope one magically appears in your mail slot.
We just got photos of our upcoming Unwound: Kid Is Gone 3LP box and they sure are pretty. Chipboard, high density black ink, kraft-wrapped jackets… it’s too much. Check it out:
Oh, you didn’t know that Unwound reunited in July of 2001 with their original drummer Brandt Sandeno for a quick run through their old songs at Olympia’s Phoenix Street House? Neither did we. A decade removed from their post-hardcore roots, with heaps of technical proficiency to go around, the trio blazed through their debut album and a few Giant Henry cuts for a select number of Olympians just prior to the release of their final album, Leaves Turn Inside You.
We’re only pressing 1000 of these LPs, and they are only available when you buy Kid Is Gone from our site. We’ll be shipping the box and bonus around 9/15, which means you’ll get KIG a full two weeks prior to the release date and be the envy of your apartment complex.
Kid Is Gone is the unquiet portrait of primal Unwound. Before 1993’s Fake Train ripped through, they’d been Giant Henry, Supertanker, and Cygnus X-1, short-lived black holes gathering dark material into something built to explode. From Justin Trosper, Vern Rumsey, and Brandt Sandeno’s first restive years, “Crab Nebula” might’ve best prepared the indie-sphere for what Unwound became, had Sandeno’s split not stalled their planned debut. Part 1 in Numero’s 4-part reissue project, Kid Is Gone documents signal chaos in Olympia’s fertile scene before Unwound’s turbulent noise hit stride, in unrevealed period photos, 34 tracks, and three LPs—cassette-only demos, early 7”s, a KAOS radio broadcast, material tracked live in a local basement, and all of what became 1994’s Unwound, on which the band’s prehistory plays out in a feral maelstrom of screaming, distortion, feedback, and abrasive promise.