Listed: To Rococo Rot + The Red Thread
To Rococo Rot
When To Rococo Rot started making music in 1996, the intermingling of organic samples and electronic tones was far from ubiquitous. In that sense, Stefan Schneider, Robert Lippok and Ronald Lippok are prescient bunch. Eight years hence, replicas of their cyborgenic lockgrooves scatter the underground landscape, but the trio deserves credit for being one of the first to update Neu’s sensibilities for the CD generation. The band’s latest recording, the excellent Hotel Morgen, was released on Domino Records on May 18. It merits mention that To Rococo Rot is bursting at the seams with other esteemed projects – Ronald Lippok is one-half of Tarwater and Schneider records dub as Mapstation. Schneider took part in this week’s Listed.
1. Chosen Few/I-Roy vs. Isaac Hayes - Tougher Than Tough (Flash ep 002, 10") – Killer production from the early ’70s. Comes with an excellent version of I-Roy chatting all over the piece and pushing it forward.
2. Paul Wirkus - Inteletto D'amore (Quecksilber/Staubgold, CD) – In times when most electro music is standardized by the use of Apple and Albleton, it is precious to hear somebody with a personal way of combining un-synched MS 10 loops, a bit of hiss and tremolos. Best electronic record in quite some time.
3. Hauschka - Substantial (Karaoke Kalk, LP/CD) – Wonderful piano record from this Düsseldorf musician. Powerful and subtle.
4. Theo Parrish - Sun Ra rmx (12") – Like most of his tracks, a great tune that does not exploit (in this case) Sun Ra's music, but adds a respectful Parrish-ness to some of the most challenging music of all time.
5. Gregory Isaacs - Beautiful Africa (African Museum, 10") – The dancehall crooner at his best. Comes with harsh Tubby versions. Tougher than tough.
6. Hannas Barber - Hannas Yard (Dalriada/Broch, LP) – A new act from Leeds and Glasgow. A fresh view on Reggae that does not deny its European electro perspective. Worth checking out for those who love Theo Parrish and Pole.
7. Arthur Russell - Pop Up Your Funk (Soul Jazz, 12") – I had totally overlooked his work at the time it was recorded. This ’80s music is the most unique 'groove chamber music' I have ever heard.
8. VA - Jah Loves Rockers: Revolutionary Sounds From ’75-’80 (Trojan, 2xCD) – Collection of rarities and lost tracks. If the Bible were a soundtrack, here it is.
9. Virginia Astley - From Gardens Where We Feel Secure (Rough Trade, CD) – Lovely, fragile sounds from the countryside. Sounds of sheep, bees, church bells and a piano are set to describe a hot summer day in southern France.
10.Carl Craig/Pepe Bradock - Angola remixes (BMG/Sony, 12") – Original African sounds combined with Detroit sequencers.
The Red Thread
Hailing from San Francisco, the Red Thread play music with a slow, southwestern feel, along the lines of their west coast compatriots the Beachwood Sparks. However, where the Beachwood Sparks emphasize the Gram Parsons end of the Southwestern spectrum, the Red Thread craft songs more along the lines of contemporary rock artists like Low and the Red House Painters, but with gentle added twang. Their debut record, After The Last (Badman) was released early in 2003, and their brand new record, Tension Pins (Badman) was released this past March.
1. Tindersticks - s/t (the first one) (Bar/None) – This is the most exciting Tindersticks record to me. It was also the first one I heard. The sound of the entire record, the drumming, the patchwork of songs is perfect.
2. Talking Heads - '77 (Sire) – The record you hear when you really find out how great the Talking Heads were.
3. Bad Brains - s/t (ROIR) – A classic. My first punk rock album.
4. The Who - Sell Out (Polygram) – It's a tough call with other Who albums, but this one comes out on top. We covered "Melancholia" once or twice.
5. Swell - 41 (Warner Bros.) – This was the first "local" album I heard when I moved to San Francisco. At first I thought “the drums sound like shit” and then I thought “the drums sound perfect...”
6. The Smiths - The Queen is Dead (Sire) – How do you pick a Smiths album?
7. Joy Division - Unknown Pleasures (Qwest) – In high school I remember this being spooky as hell...liking it, but not knowing why. It's stood the test of time well.
8. Hot Snakes - Automatic Midnight (Swami) – Yes, Drive Like Jehu was great and so was Pitchfork, but this is just pure. One of my favorite live shows as well.
9. The Cure - Seventeen Seconds (Elektra) – I'm just praying no one covers The Forest. I know it's going to happen.
10. The Fall - This Nation's Saving Grace - There are a ton of the Fall albums I like - and a ton of Fall albums in general - but this one sticks out as being the most memorable...most melodic.
By Dusted Magazine