Rich Allen Poop 2014

Favorite Things ~ 2014 ALBUMS

Buy Gazelle Twin ~ Unflesh New or Used via Amazon   Buy New or Used via Amazon           Rent via iTunes [?]
Gazelle Twin ~ Unflesh (Anti Ghost Moon Ray/Last Gang)
Something bad happened to Elizabeth Bernholz between 2011’s The Entire City and 2014’s Unflesh. The details are foggy, but hints can be gleaned from interviews and the way the artist performs hunched over with her face obscured by a hoodie (and replaced on the album cover by a slab of meat). The suffering has made her an astonishing artist; she’s channeled her pain into genius.

Birds of a Feather EPs box set Birds of a Feather EPs box set Buy from Flaming Pines
Various Artists ~ Bird Box (Flaming Pines)
For the past few years, Kate Carr’s Birds of a Feather series has been releasing CD3s from various artists, each of whom was invited to contribute an extended track inspired by a specific bird. An antidote to the plethora of generic avian inclusions, this joyful series was eventually collected in a hand-painted wooden bird feeder: an attention to detail that served as a perfect coda to the series.

DJ Food ~ Solid Steel Radio Show 16/5/2014 Part 3 + 4 (Ninja Tune)
It’s been a decade since Ninja Tune released an edition of its Solid Steel series, but the broadcast continues weekly on the waves. This mix celebrates the origins of the 12″ by interspersing interview snippets and songs from the era. Bow Wow Wow, Frankie Goes to Hollywood and Talking Heads all get their due, but the set’s primary attraction is its playful perspective on vinyl history.

Rent Lullatone ~ while winter whispers mp3 via Amazon   Rent mp3 from Amazon           Rent via iTunes [?]
Lullatone ~ while winter whispers (Self-Released)
The third and finest of the Japanese duo’s seasonal series, while winter whispers is a recognition of little moments and quiet joys; this is music for “warming your hands on coffee mugs” and “watching your breath come out like little clouds.” The band’s Patatap App (fun to say, even more fun to use) followed in its wake, a toddler’s dream that even an adult could love.

Rent  Ian William Craig ~ A Turn of Breath mp3 via Amazon    Rent mp3 via Amazon           Rent via iTunes [?]
Ian William Craig ~ A Turn of Breath (Recital)
A Turn of Breath is an exploration of the human voice, paired with its highest aspirations. Craig’s operatic voice is layered, reverberated, distorted and filtered through reel-to-reel tape. His falsetto represents the purity of humanity, attempting to plod forward, accumulating dust and detritus, sorrow and anger, guilt and sin. Yet the feet still stumble onward, even against a stiffening wind.

Rent Rumour Cubes ~ Appearances of Collections mp3 via Amazon    Rent mp3 via Amazon          Rent via iTunes [?]     Rent Digital Album or Buy CD via Bandcamp
Rumour Cubes ~ Appearances of Collections (Self-Released)
Rumour Cubes ups the ante significantly with Appearances of Collections, morphing from a small band to a small orchestra. The violin and viola are now joined by cello and cornet, sax and harp. This is post-rock retooled for a new generation, a sign of progress from a genre in need of reinvention.

Rent Death Blues ~ Ensemble mp3 via Amazon    Rent mp3 via Amazon           Rent via iTunes [?]
Death Blues ~ Ensemble (Rhythmplex)
This hugely ambitious project, a shared love of love from Volcano Choir’s Jon Mueller and multi-instrumentalist William Ryan Fritch (whose own 10-album Leave Me Sessions was another of the year’s highlights), Ensemble is a colorful conglomeration of orchestral sounds inspired by masks. The hardback vinyl presentation and internal essays make for a complete collector’s package.

Buy or Rent Thibault Jehanne ~ Eskifjörður via Kaon    Rent or Buy via Kaon           Rent via iTunes [?]
Thibault Jehanne ~ Eskifjörður (Accueil)
The raw material for Thibault Jehanne’s soundscape was captured in Iceland’s eastern fjords, a thinly-populated area that serves as a battleground between the old ways and the new. By merging the sounds of environment and industry, the artist underlines the drama without provoking the politics.

Rent Valerio Tricoli ~ Miseri Lares mp3 via Amazon    Rent mp3 via Amazon           Rent via iTunes [?]
Valerio Tricoli ~ Miseri Lares (PAN)
Featuring dialogue from Dante, Ecclesiastes and Lovecraft, it’s clear that this will not be a cheerful record. Miseri Lares represents the subtlety of collapse, the “irrational horror within.” Creaks and clanks abound, the evidence of unvanquished ghosts. Eventually the album creates its own haunting.

Buy Katie Gately ~ Fatcat Split #23 Vinyl New or Used via Amazon    Buy New or Used Vinyl via Amazon           Rent via iTunes [?]
Katie Gately ~ Fatcat Split #23 (Fatcat)
Arriving on the heels of 2013’s self-titled mini-album and blue tapes eight, Katie Gately’s quarter-hour track “Pivot” establishes her as one of the most exciting artists around. Tlaotlon’s side of the split is decent, but it can’t compete with Gately’s multi-tracked vocal attack. Sometimes meditative and sometimes playful, Gately runs the gamut of emotions and leaves the listener happily enervated.

Songs: Vocal Instrumental
The Liturgists, “Vapor” Anna Thorvaldsdottir, “Aeriality”
Cageless Birds, “Mt. Zion” Lech Nienartowicz, “Czynnoski”
Jake Hamilton, “Beautiful Ryder” Christina Vantzou, “Going Backwards to Discover What Was Left Behind”
Hillsong Worship, “Broken Vessels” For the Fatherless, “The Time of Singing
North Side Drive, “Snow Has Come” Gidge, “Norrland”

Various Artists, Bird Box (Flaming Pines)
Ian Humberstone & David Chatton Barker, Theo Brown & the Folklore of Dartmoor (Folklore Tapes)
Death Blues, Ensemble (Rhythmplex)
Monolyth & CobaltPolarlicht (Time Released Sound)
Michael Pisaro, Continuum Unbound (Gravity Wave)

Music Videos   (in alphabetical order)
BRAAINZZ, "oops" (directed by Johnny Chew)
Carly Paradis, "The Hope of a Favourable Outcome" (directed by The Brothers Lynch)
Chella Ride, "Dog Blood" (directed by Golden Wolf)
Daniel Koren, "Walking Contest" (directed by Vania Haymann)
Jonas Reinhardt, "Ganymede" (various directors; DVD on Constellation Tatsu)
Katie Gately, "Pivot" (directed by Louis J. Morton)
Last Ex, "Girl Seizure" (directed by Gabe Mangold)
Robert Curgenven,"They tore the earth" (directed by Robert Curgenven)
Sculpture, "Plastic Infinite" (directed by Sculpture)
Throwing Snow, "The Tempest" (directed by Rick Robin)

Art Books
Stefan Fischer, Hieronymous Bosch: The Complete Works
Stuart Tolley, Collector’s Edition: Innovative Packaging and Graphics
Ingo F. Walther, Codices Illustres: The World’s Most Famous Illustrated Manuscripts
Michael Benson, Cosmographics: Picturing Space Through Time
Elion Paz & Sheila Burgel Dust and Grooves: Adventures in Record Collecting

Fiction & Non-Fiction Children’s Illustration
Anthony Doerr, All the Light We Cannot See Newgarden & Cash, Bow Wow’s Nightmare Neighbors
Alain de Botton, The News Jen Bryant & Melissa Sweet, The Right Word
Trevor Cox, The Sound Book Yamada & Besom, What Do You Do With An Idea?
Pico Iyer, The Art of Stillness Rebecca Chaperon, Eerie Dearies: 26 Ways …
Emily Carroll, Through the Woods Dan Santat, The Adventures of Beekle

Favorite Films of 2014
Captain America: Winter Soldier, Guardians of the Galaxy & The Lego Movie (all repeat views!)

Richard Allen
A Closer Listen

1 Comment on "Rich Allen Poop 2014"

  1. Matthew Nerney | January 24, 2015 at 5:57 am |

    Hey, Rich. Your list is as intriguing as always. I always find a few things to pick up after researching your choices. Thanks!

Comments are closed.