Unreleased Sun Ra Rome Live Album For Record Store Day 2016

STRUT122 front coverThanks to some inspired detective work by Art Yard Records, an intimate trio performance by Sun Ra in Rome in 1977, ‘In Some Far Place’, is receiving its first release for this year’s Record Store Day on April 16th. Recorded from the sound desk and mastered from original reels, the album features Sun Ra on piano and Moog, drummer Luqman Ali and occasional Arkestra vocalist Thomas Thaddeus in fine form, exploring Ra staples and revisiting some of the traditional jazz pieces from his early Chicago days. Tracks include the reflective ‘Trying To Put The Blame On Me,’ ‘Spontaneous Simplicity’ and the first Sun Ra version of ‘I Cover The Waterfront’ to ever be officially released. New sleeve notes come courtesy of the Arkestra’s Knoel Scott with cover design by Lewis Heriz.

Record Store Day 2016 takes place internationally on 16th April 2016. For details on participating stores, visit http://www.recordstoreday.com/

Record Store Day 2015: Sun Ra & His Intergalactic Research Arkestra: Planets Of Life Or Death

Sun Ra Planets final cover
In celebration of Record Store Day 2015, Strut and Art Yard join forces once more for the first release anywhere of a live Sun Ra performance from Amiens, France in 1973, Planets Of Life Or Death. Recorded direct from the soundboard and mastered from first generation reel to reel, the title is exclusively available for Record Store Day 2015.

Sun Ra and his Arkestra had just completed a residency at the legendary Gibus in Paris in October before traveling to Amiens for a visceral Sunday afternoon concert. “Sun Ra’s use of the Arkestra as his instrument in an onslaught of sound, colour and movement stimulated and even shocked the senses and the shakras of audience participants onto a higher plane of spirit consciousness,” explains the Arkestra’s Knoel Scott.

On Side 1, the session kicks off with the theatrical overture, ‘Enlightenment’ as Sun Ra and vocalist June Tyson invite the audience to “be of our space world.” Ra then moves into a rare instrumental version of ‘Love In Outer Space,’ transforming the perennial Arkestra classic into a raw, ritualistic experience.

Side 2 of the album opens with the glistening ‘Lights On A Satellite’ led by the spiritual tenor sax of John Gilmore. Closing track, the epic, chaotic, anxious ‘Discipline 27-II / What Planet Is This’ features Sun Ra and June Tyson take a thinly veiled psychedelic swipe at life on earth: “If this is a planet of life, why do people die here?”

Planets Of Life Or Death follows 2014’s landmark compilation presented by Marshall Allen, In the Orbit Of Ra. The release features rare photos from Sun Ra’s 1973 European tour by photographer Jan Persson with sleeve notes by Knoel Scott.

Stream a track from the album below. Information on participating stores for RSD 2015 is available here.

Record Store Day 2014 Releases From Rodion G.A. & Dance Mania

RSD2014We have no shortage of reasons to love the Springtime: the long awaited thaw, blooming plant life, young love (or in some cases not so young…). But high on our list of favorite things about the Spring is Record Store Day, which this year falls on Saturday April 19th. Any occasion to celebrate independent music retailers, to create special vinyl-only treasures, and of course to get out there and hit the record bins is aces in our book!

This year we have two very special pieces for the Record Store Day faithful. First we have a never-before-released science-fiction soundtrack from the enigmatic Rodion G.A. We’re also following up our Hardcore Traxx collection with three more rare treats from one of Chicago’s great house music labels, Dance Mania.

For a full list of participating Record Store Day stores and info on Record Store Day releases, head to http://www.recordstoreday.com/

Rodion G.A. – Misiunea Spatiala Delta (Delta Space Mission)

Rodion DSM cover medFor listeners who found our 2013 release of mostly unheard psychedelic / electronic compositions from obscure Romanian outfit Rodion G.A. to be a revelation, we have a treat for you. In the early 80s, Rodion was approached to create an electronic score for a science fiction feature based on a Romanian animated TV series. Rodion’s 15-minute prototype score was unfortunately shelved at a late stage and replaced with more accessible cues from composer Adrian Enescu, but the recordings survived, and it’s our pleasure to present the previously unreleased music on vinyl for Record Store Day 2014. Misiunea Spatiala Delta (Delta Space Mission) is mastered from the original reel-to-reel tapes and is limited to 1000 copies worldwide.

Dance Mania – Revival Traxx EP

Dance Mania EP cover medAmidst the overwhelmingly positive feedback for our Hardcore Traxx collection of classics from Chicago’s Dance Mania label, several keen listeners expressed regret that even more music wasn’t included. We completely agree, which is why we’ve teamed up once again with Dance Mania for an EP that mines the deeper parts of the revered archive for three bona fide dancefloor burners.

The A-side is made up of two key cuts from 1994: Drewsky’s ‘Wigged Out’ (produced by DJ Deeon and mixed by DJ Milton) and Club Style’s ‘Spirit’ (recorded by Paul Johnson and Robert Armani).  On the flip, we feature a previously unreleased cut from Parris Mitchell’s Rhythm II Rhythm moniker. Recorded at the same time as the classic ‘A Touch of Jazz’ in ’92, ‘Mellow Magic’ is another melodic, subtle house gem but was shelved due solely to a packed 12” release schedule on Dance Mania. Vinyl on this one is limited to 500 copies worldwide, available exclusively from participating Record Store Day retailers.

Enjoy supporting your local record shop for Record Store Day, and we’ll see you in the bins!

 

 

Record Store Day 2013 Exclusive: Rare Italian Library LP From Vuolo & Grande

Record Store Day is almost upon us again, and as we have the previous two years, we’ve come up with something really special to add to the festivities.

Following up on our retrospective of the legendary UK music library KPM, we’ve put together a limited, vinyl reissue of one of our favorite Italian library LPs (the originals of which, it should go without saying, are very tough to come by). The 1979 concept gem Desert is composed and arranged by Antonio Vuolo and Elio Grande, originally was released on small Italian label, Cardium.

The instrumentation features early electronics to set a cosmic tone, and the album regularly recalls early Tangerine Dream. Stand-out tracks include the haunting slo-mo breakbeat “Leaving,” mellow electroscape “Transvesuvian” and the solid jazz fusion jam “Take Flight.”

As a Record Store Day exclusive, we’re reissuing the full album, mastered from the original reels for the first time since its original issue, and with artwork restored from the original lithographs.

Record Store Day 2013 falls on April 20th. For more information and participating stores, visit http://www.recordstoreday.com.

Musicians:
ANTONIO VUOLO: Mini Moog, Fender Rhodes, Piano Steinway, Clavinet, Vibraphone, Hammond B3
RINO DIAFERIO: Fender Stratocaster, Martin, Ramirez, Fender Precision Bass
ELIO GRANDE: Jazz Fender Bass, Guild Ramirez
GEGE’ MUNARI: Percussion

A1. TAKE FLIGHT 5.00
A2. DROPS IN THE WIND 4.22
A3. LEAVING 4.23
A4. SOFT MELODY 2.03

B1. DESERT 4.50
B2. BLOW BUBBLES 3.31
B3. TRANSVESUVIAN 3.42
B4. CREATION 2.26
B5. THE END 1.28