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420 E. 4th Street | Long Beach, CA | 90802
(562) 433-4996

Bishop Briggs, RSDv2 (Dream Syndicate / The Alarm/King Tuff) new releases & more

Hello music lovers,Hopefully you’re getting excited about Record Store Day, because it’s coming on like a freight train, like a hurricane, like a rolling stone, and just about any other metaphor from your record collection. By our count it’s a bit over 9 days away, and we’ve got our calendar stacked, and the shelves will soon follow.

The thumbnail: Friday: Bishop Briggs
Saturday: Dashboard Confessional, The Dream Syndicate, King Tuff, & Mike Peters of The Alarm all playing, and Albert Hammond Jr (guitarist of the Strokes) signing his RSD 10″ and his full-length solo release. All the details on all the shows are just down the page, along with a whole pile of other stuff.

Before that: lots of prep, including working on new t-shirts, slip mats, and stickers.

There’s a ton of amazing new releases this past week, and again this coming Friday, so if you’re feeling the jones for some new tunes, stop in and do a little perusing. We’ve also been loading the bins with fresh used and restocks.

Have a great week, see you soon.

BISHOP BRIGGS – Live In-Store Performance
Friday, April 20th 7:00pm
Bishop Briggs, is a child of the world, born in London to Scottish parents, she spent her early years in Tokyo karaoke bars, then on to Hong Kong, then LA and school at Musician’s Institute. She first crossed our radar with her appearance on the Cold Wars Kids song “So Tied Up”. But before we got there, she was already quite the internet sensation, tracking commercials for Acura, and climbing the Shazam search results (apparently that’s a thing).
Bishop Briggs has toured as the opening act for Coldplay, released a couple of very hot EPs, and is poised to deliver her full-length debut, Church of Scars, on April 20th.
Bringing a hip-hop edge and sensibility to her perfect dark pop sound, Bishop Briggs is going to have one hell of a year in 2018.
Rolling Stone picked her in their 10 New Artists you need to Know feature (2016), and described her music as sounding like “Guttural dirges over a Nineties sci-fi film score”, and went on to recommend her to fans of Florence + the Machine, Banks, & PJ Harvey. There’s a lot more going on, but this is a great starting place.
Sample some:
Dream –  Unstoppable and gorgeous
River – Her breakout song.
We have opened the guest list for Bishop Briggs with pre-order of Church of Scars, and we’re well on our way to having a selling it out, so fair warning if you’re still on the fence. Pre-order in person or by calling 562.433.4996. If space allows when we’re closer, we’ll open with free RSVP, but we expect this one to reach capacity first.

So Much Good Stuff

It’s getting to be RSD time again, and this year is shaping up to be among the best ever; the list is so strong, and the early word is we’ve done well in the allocation lottery, and the events fell like Greek Theatre status or better,  check out the details below and see if you agree:

THE RELEASES… are borderline ridiculous, with huge titles coming from Grateful Dead, Run The Jewels, Sundays, Dream Syndicate, David Axelrod, David Bowie, Jeff & Tim Buckley, Chicano Batman, The Cure, Czarface, Daughter, Mac DeMarco, Descendents, The Doors, Duran Duran, Dylan, Eno, Fidlar, Fleetwood Mac, Led Zeppelin, Lil Uzi Vert, Linkin Park, Madonna, Van Morrison, The National, Pink Floyd, Neil Young, and almost 400 other titles, all limited edition, and all varying shades of amazing. Check out the full list at Recordstoreday.com. As always, we will not be able to hold or pre-sell any of these, and all are limited to (1) per title/per person/family.
THE EVENTS: If you told me we would have a day where Dashboard Confessional, King Tuff, The Dream Syndicate, & the Alarm, all play on our humble little stage, on the same day, I would have a hard time believing it, but it’s all happening… and, Albert Hammond Jr., of The Strokes and several solo albums fame, will be dropping in to sign records. Damn. What. A. Day.
THE HOURS: This is where it gets a little crazy. Years ago we decided it would be a good idea to open at 6:00am, and here we are… The getting up early part is rough, but since this is a day to celebrate the record store culture, we couldn’t let it go without having some of our favorite bands in to play, and this is the only way we could figure out how to do it. We’ll be closing at our regular 10:00pm.

Read on for all of the details, and stay tuned to our social media for spotlights on some of our favorite RSD releases.

The Dream Syndicate – Live In-Store Performance
Saturday, April 21st 2:30pm (RSD)

When the call came in saying that Steve Wynn wanted to celebrate Record Store Day with us, my little indie-rock heart felt like Meg White was on the drum stool.

Combining the guitar drenched sounds of Neil Young and Television with the art-rock of the Velvet Underground, and running it through the post-punk, paisley infused, free-for-all that was Los Angeles in the early 80s, the Dream Syndicate soundtracked more than an evening, they soundtracked our youth. They came up in the same scene that nurtured X, The Blasters, Opal, and The Three O’Clock, making several seminal albums, including Medicine Show, The Days of Wine & Roses, and Ghost Stories. Happily, 2017 saw the release of the amazing How Did I Find Myself Here? featuring a reunited band, with the addition of our old pal Chris Cacavas on keys, and Kendra Smith joining in with a song and a guest vocal.  Pitchfork described it as “…the atmospheric, guitar-focused rock that veer(s) between noise and subtlety; Wynn’s moody and angsty, enigmatic lyrics that evoke noir cinema and literature; and a penchant for extended instrumental jamming.”  which is better than anything we could have come up with on short notice.

Live on KEXP – Live Session, from the US leg of their recent triumphant world tour.

We are opening the guest list for this very special live RSD performance with pre-order of the RSD exclusive album, How We Found Ourselves… Everywhere!, a collection of out-takes and Live Tracks from the 2017 tour. Pre-order in person or by calling 562.433.4996. We will be holding some copies (and space for the in-store) back for RSD shoppers, but we expect this one to fill up, so we encourage you to make your arrangements early.

THE ALARM – Live In-Store Performance
Saturday, April 21st 8:00pm (RSD)

Mike Peters, of the Alarm, will once again be bringing the rock for Record Store Day. If you grew up listening to the golden era of KROQ, chances are good that songs like Sixty Eight Guns, The Stand, Rain in the Summertime, and so many more are part of your eternal mix-tape. Mike brought the boys with him last year, but this year he’s flying solo… literally. Mike’s gonna wake up in London and head to the studio to record 4 versions of The Alarm’s new single Transatlantic, from their first new album since 2013. Those performances will be lathe cut live onto 7″s for in-store contests, Mike then heads to Rough Trade in London to play for the line, and from there it’s off to the airport and a flight to New York and an in-store at Looney Tunes, then once again into the sky for a quick bound over to our shop, where he’ll take the stage at 8:00 for his final performance of the day. Three shows in three time zones on the same day; Take that Phil Collins!

All this to set up The Alarm’s Record Store Day release, Where Two Rivers Meet, an 8-song mini-album made up of new material, including three songs from the upcoming new album, due in June, with the rest being acoustic tracks and an out-take or two. Billy Duffy of The Cult plays one of the tracks.

Sixty Eight Guns – From the remastered version of their debut album, and still an epic rocker.

Full Show – Complete live show, recorded in Glasgow last year. This is a band still very much riding the crest of their best work. There are at least a couple of the new songs on this set list.

We are opening the guest with pre-order of the RSD exclusive Where Two Rivers Meet mini-ep. If space allows when we’re closer, we’ll open first come first served. Pre-orders include a +1 and priority entry. Pre-order in person or by calling 562.433.4996.

KING TUFF – Live In-Store Performance (RSD)
Saturday, April 21st 6:00pm
When asked to describe the title track from his new record, Kyle Thomas-aka King Tuff-takes a deep breath. “It’s a song about hitting rock bottom,” he says. “I didn’t even know what I wanted to do anymore, but I still had this urge-this feeling-like there was this possibility of something else I could be doing… and then I just followed that possibility. To me, that’s what songwriting, and art in general, is about. You’re chasing something, there is something out there calling to you and you’re trying to get at it. ‘The Other’ is basically where songs come from, it’s the hidden world, it’s the mystery. It’s the invisible hand that guides you whenever you make something. It’s the thing I had to rediscover-the sort of voice I had to follow-to bring me back to making music again in a way that felt true and good.”
With wizard hat firmly in place, Thomas embraced his world-weary ennui, and with a mountain of unfamiliar equipment headed into the Pine Room, his wood paneled spaceship of a home studio, and settled in for a cage match with his muse. The result represents a kind of psychic evolution for the King Tuff. No less hooky than previous records, the new songs ditch the goofy rock and roll bacchanalia narratives of earlier records in favor of expansive arrangements, a diversity of instrumentation, and lyrics that straddle the fence between painful ruminations and reconnecting with that part of oneself that feels childlike and creative and not corroded by cynicism. The soulful and cosmic new direction is apparent from the album’s first moments: introduced by the gentle ringing of a chime, acoustic guitar, and warm organ tones, “The Other” is a narrative of redemption born of creativity. It’s glorious.
Of the new album, Thomas says “I’d never played a show with just an acoustic guitar… it just seemed like the scariest thing. I knew I wanted to write some new songs that could stand up in that kind of setting, which really opened the door to a new way of working.”We are happy to announce that King Tuff will be joining us for a very special acoustic set on Record Store Day. We’re hearing he’s only done a handful of shows this way, and the word is not only do the songs hold up, it is breathtaking.

Sample some of the new songs:

We are opening the guest list with pre-order of The Other beginning today. While they last, we will have the colored vinyl Loser Edition of the LP. The Other is also available on CD and Cassette. IF space allows when we’re closer, we will open the guest list free with RSVP, but pre-orders include a +1 and priority entry. Pre-order in person, or by calling 562.433.4996.

ALBERT HAMMOND JR – Record Signing
Saturday, April 21st 5:00pm (RSD)

Among the swirling hyperbole and fan cries about Francis Trouble being “His best album yet”, there is a fascinating story at the root of the Strokes guitarist’s new solo release, and that’s the story of how he was originally going to be a twin. His sibling, Francis, wasn’t carried to term, but instead left Albert to find him, and eventually himself, through his ghost-brother’s “lost persona”. Francis, it seems, would have been more of a romantic, a deeper thinker, and a legendary lover; in other words, all of the things we imagine when we picture our better selves, yet because it wasn’t himself he was picturing, there is strange mix of longing and playfulness on this, his fourth solo release.

Check out:
Far Away Truths
Set to Attack
Muted BeatingsAlbert Hammond Jr is currently out on his headline North America Tour, and just recently supported The Killers on a string of dates, including their Staples Center show, as well as a UK run with Franz Ferdinand. We are very excited to announce that Albert Hammond Jr will be joining us for Record Store Day to sign copies of his limited vinyl 10″ release, Etchings From Francis Trouble, a collection of b-sides from Francis Trouble, as well as the full length Francis Trouble.

We will be offering priority wristbands with pre-order of either the limited RSD title, Etchings From Francis Trouble, or with the full-length Francis Trouble on LP or CD. To pre-order either drop in or call us at 562.433.4996.

Saturday, April 21st 1:00pm (More tickets available on RSD)
2018 finds Dashboard Confessional releasing their first album of new music in over eight years, and to celebrate the new album, Crooked Shadows, and Record Store Day, Dashboard will be stopping in for a very special stripped down acoustic Record Store Day performance.
Crooked Shadows was produced by band leader Chris Carrabba alongside Jonathan Clark and co-producer Colin Brittain. It includes the single ‘We Fight’. Carrabba says, “When I wrote ‘We Fight’ I thought it was just about the music scene that I came up in – a place where people who’d never quite fit in anywhere felt they actually belonged. When we began playing the song live on our summer tour, I realized that ‘We Fight’ held a much broader meaning. It’s a song for people who, in spite of their differences, can find common ground in their convictions and foster those into something bigger than themselves. That, to me is something worth fighting for.”Check out We Fight

We’ve capped out our initial guest list for this event, but we’ll be opening approximately 50 additional spots on RSD morning. These will only be available in the shop, sorry no phones for these. This is so we can adjust the capacity based on the line, and to reward RSD shoppers, but mostly to keep the Fire Marshall happy. 
Dashboard Confessional will be playing a full show, plugs and all, at the Palladium later this same evening. Tickets are still available (as of this writing) at this link.

All Available Now
Dr Octagon – Moosebumps: An Exploration into Modern Day Horror (CD/LP)
Blackberry Smoke – Find a Light (CD/LP)
Special insert with LP purchase.
Eels – Destruction (CD/LP)
Loving this new Eels music. 
Hinds – I Don’t Run
Album number 2, this time co-produced by Hinds and Gordon Raphael (The Strokes, Regina Spektor), and engineered by Grammy winner Shawn Everett (Alabama Shakes, Perfume Genius, The War On Drugs, John Legend).
Hop Along – Bark Your Head off, Dog
Third album of thoughtful, political, and weighty topics, but this time around, they’ve added strings, more intricate rhythms, lush harmonies along with a momentary visit with a vocoder.
Kylie Minogue – Golden (CD/LP/DLX)
Kylie’s latest is a mix of Kylie’s signature dance pop with some real Nashville twang. The deluxe has 4 extra songs, and a better package.
Jeff Beck – Live at the Hollywood Bowl (CD/LP)
Chicago – Chicago VI Decades Live (Box)
Micah P Hinson – At the British Broadcasting Corporation (CD//LP)
Love – Forever Changes (DLX)
Box Set Release with DVD, LP, and lots of outtakes and live tracks.
Rainbow Kittens Surprise – How To: Friend, Love, Freefall (CD/LP)
30 Seconds to Mars – New Album
Underoath – Erase Me (CD/LP)
E-40 / B-LEGIT            Connected & Respected 
Lil Xan – Total Xanarchy
New face on the hip hop scene, releasing his first proper release, which is said to be an homage to the late/great Tupac.
Alison Wonderland – Awake
Frank Sinatra – Baby Blue Eyes (CD/LP)
Johnny Cash – Total Sun Collection
Elvis Presley – Searcher Soundtrack
Various – Restoration: Reimagining the Songs of Elton John & Bernie Taupin
Covers album, featuring a load of Nashville’s biggest and brightest, including; Dierks Bentley, Rosanne Cash and Emmylou Harris, Miley Cyrus, Vince Gill and Don Henley, Miranda Lambert, Little Big Town, Maren Morris, Kacey Musgraves, Willie Nelson, Brothers Osborne, Chris Stapleton, Rhonda Vincent and Dolly Parton and Lee Ann Womack.
Various – Revamp: Reimagining Songs of Elton John & Bernie Taupin
Covers album v.2, but this time it leans towards the urban and pop world. Artists include; Mary J. Blige, Alessia Cara, Coldplay, Miley Cyrus, Florence And The Machine, Lady Gaga, The Killers, Mumford and Sons, P!nk and Logic, Q-Tip ft. Demi Lovato, Queens of the Stone Age, Ed Sheeran, and Sam Smith.
Diet Cig – Over Easy (CD/LP)
John Fogarty – Centerfield
Goat Girl – Goat Girl
Island – Feels Like Air
Jungle Rot – What Horrors Await
Sloan – 12 (CD/LP)
Son Volt – Search
Lisa Stansfield – Deeper
Unknown Mortal Orchestra – Sex & Food (CD/LP)
We still have a couple of these left on colored wax, and it’s excellent, so if you’re thinking about it, I wouldn’t leave it for too long.
Wye Oak – The Louder I Call, The Faster it Runs (CD/LP)
Absolutely stunning new album. When a band you love for their guitars does an album that’s keyboard heavy, it’s a little scary; well I’m happy to save this album would be amazing palyed on a kazoo. We have colored vinyl, and might even have a signed copy still kicking around.
Daniel Avery – Song For Alpha
Wonder Years – Sister Cities
Notable Vinyl, Not Covered Above: 

Blackberry Smoke – Find a Light (CD/LP)
Bob Dylan – Freewheelin Bob Dylan (LP)
Eels – Deconstruction (10″)
Mike Ness – Cheating at Solitaire / Under the Influence (LP)
Jack Kerouac – Blues & Haikus (LP)
Jack backed by classic jazz players.


Web Trawling

Interesting Clicks That Came Up On The Net


We were shaking – One of the greatest live performances I’ve ever seen was Trent Reznor (NIN) doing a version of Piggy, accompanied by a string section, but dominated by egg shaker. With that in mind, here are some shaker tips for you budding percussionists.
Jonathan Wilson – La Isla Bonita, acoustic in Norway 2016. It’s kind of fun to picture the resident hippy listening to Madonna albums, and trying to chose a song to cover.
King Gizzard & the Lizard Wizard – Live on KEXP, recorded late last year.
Nirvana – Heart Shaped Box (live), the final song from the final show Nirvana did. Esquire has a great article about it. Kurdt died 24 years ago this week (makes pouring one out motion).
Cover Art – Interesting article about a photographer who spent years looking for the original locations of 40 of his favorite (mostly reggae) LP covers, and then taking pictures of the albums in place.
Howlin’ Rain – A collection of beautiful words about the band, some chat about the new album (and it’s electric Crazy Horse moments), and the first single. Thank you NPR. Look for an in-store announcement closer to street date.
Mapache  – In the Morning Light, live on KEXP. Look for them touring with Howlin’ Rain later this spring.
Arthur Buck – There’s a new project coming from Joseph Arthur and Peter Buck, this is the first track from it.
Miley Cyrus – Covering Dolly Parton’s Jolene for Backyard Sessions. I’m gonna guess as many of you will be surprised as not. It’s old, and it’s already got 150M views, but it’s still worth a repost.
Lake Street Dive  – Taking a swing, so to speak, at A-Ha’s Take On Me. It’s more fun than being a vegetarian at a Cambodian street food festival.
Peter Nalitch – Guitar is the song, and it was found by our friend Larry Inditch, who loves Sigur Ros and Radiohead. This doesn’t sound like either of them, but the video has its moments.
Calendar Filling

Sugary Delights to Fill Up Your Nights  

04.21 – Record Store Day – In case you skipped everything else up there /\
04.21 – RSD Party 4th Street Vine – Dogfish Head sponsored RSD playback party, bring your RSD purchases down and they’ll play them for you.
04.29 – Smiths/Morrissey Convention –   Hollywood. Tickets available here at the shop.
05.08 – Pokey Lafarge – Moved to the Yost Theater in Santa Ana now that Don the Beachcomber is getting out of the music game.
05.17 – Summer and Music (SAM) Season kick off, happening here at the shop. Live music and all the news that fits.
05.26 – The Blasters
 – Up Top at Shannon’s on Pine/Broadway.
06.23 – SAM – fka720 – Our annual skate dance party
07.07 – SAM – Twisted at the Pike – Twisted indie rock with a carnival theme
08.08 – SAM – Buskerfest – Our annual celebration of local music in the East Village
09.29&30 – Music Tastes Good – The cheap tickets are gone, but that just means we’re getting closer to the announcement of who’s going to play, and that is a very good thing to look forward to, but then there’s the I should have gotten the cheap tickets crash, followed by the inevitable calls asking when can I get my tickets at Fingerprints. The “repeat the cycle” races are coming to town…

Cash or Trade for Used CDs, LPs, & More
We Want Your Old Records, CDs, and More
Cleaning out your garage? Paring down your collection? We’re always looking for albums, CDs, books, cassettes, and music related memorabilia. We pay the best prices in town (cash or store credit), and if it’s a big collection, we’ll be happy to come to you to check it out. Call us at 562.433.4996 and let’s get this off your to-do list.
Thanks for supporting local businesses, Long Beach is cooler because of it. Some of our favorites are Berlin, Rainbow Juices, Salud, The Hip Pea, Long Beach Creamery (Now open on the Promenade, South of Broadway), Congregation, Lola’s, & there are so many more. Go forth and love them.