Aquarium Drunkard: Sidecar/August 13, 2018
Welcome to the working week, and welcome to another issue of Aquarium Drunkard's bi-monthly dispatch of audio esoterica, interviews, mixtapes, and cultural ephemera. As always, we're presented by Gold Diggers boutique hotel, bar, and recording studios in East Hollywood, Calif.
The Aquarium Drunkard Guide to ECM Records
Last year, jazz/fusion/classical label ECM's massive output finally made its way to streaming services. Though CDs and vinyl remain “preferred mediums,” both for the label and the crew AD, access to the sprawling discography sent more than a few of us here down the ECM rabbit hole. Last week, we dove in with the first in a series exploring the label's massive discography, outlining 22 lps to start with. Read, then subscribe to our Spotify playlist, too.
The Aquarium Drunkard Reader :: Shantaram; The Stray Bullet: William S. Burroughs in Mexico
If you're looking to ease off the Netflix, here are a couple of recent reads we recommend.
First up, Gregory David Roberts 953-page opus,Shantaram. Published in 2003, and set in the late 1970s, Shamtaram tells the tale of an Australian man seeking redemption after falling into opiate addiction, crime, and subsequently, prison. The novel takes off shortly after our protagonist breaks out of said prison and goes on the lam with a false passport landing in Bombay. From here things get Dickensian with hyper-real vignettes of The Standing Babas, the Indian underworld, life in the sanctioned slums, and much more.
Next up, Jorge García-Robles The Stray Bullet: William S. Burroughs in Mexico. A quick, yet informative, read chronicling Burroughs time spent living in Mexico City between 1949-52 in an attempt to evade extradition to the United States. Picking up in the early 40s, in post-WW II Manhattan, García-Robles sets the scene, laying out how and why Burroughs moved his wife and family south of the border. While this period of the controversial writer's life is noted for the tragic, botched, game of William Tell in which Burroughs killed his wife, García-Robles takes pains to dig deeper, exploring the author's attitudes towards Mexico, her people and culture, during the three years he spent living there - a period in which he penned the seminal works Junky and Queer.
The Lagniappe Sessions: Jess Williamson
Earlier this year Jess Williamson released Cosmic Wink via her new home on the Mexican Summer label. Williamson says the record is her "California album," having moved from her native Texas out west. Coast and canyon throughout, that spirit imbues the below session with a reinterpretation of Bjork’s “Unravel” ("I feel very connected to the lyrics — this idea that when we are apart from someone we love, the love itself unravels and you have to put it back together when you see each other again") and a gothic rendering of Dwight Yoakam’s “1000 Miles From Nowhere” ("It’s celebratory and sorrowful at the same time").
Will Sheff / The Rock*A*Teens :: The Aquarium Drunkard Interview
Fresh off the release of the long-awaited Sixth House, Atlanta's Rock*A*Teens' Chris Lopez sat down with Okkervil River's Will Sheff for a wide-ranging conversation at Aquarium Drunkard. Both a back-and-forth between two songwriters and something of a love letter from a fan to artist, it's a tremendous talk, offering a zoom-in look at the relationship between song and place (in this case, Atlanta's Cabbagetown neighborhood).
AD Recommends :: Music Ads
Over on Tumblr, we've been obsessed with this ace collection of album advertisements. From a mid-'80s Beach Boys advert to a shocking Nico ad for The End, it's built scrolling.
Our weekly two-hour show on SIRIUS/XMU, channel 35, can now be heard every Wednesday at 7pm PST with encore broadcasts on-demand via the SIRIUS/XM app. Here's what you heard (or missed) last week.
SIRIUS 532 (August 8): Jean Michel Bernard – Générique Stephane ++ Basa Basa – African Soul Power (excerpt) ++ Shintaro Sakamoto – From The Dead ++ Sinkane – Yacha ++ Muro – 追跡大作戦 Theme From Chase ++ Muro -「ハードトレーニング」より新しい世界への旅立ち ++ Muro – Conduct: A Library Research ++ The Whitefield Brothers – Safari Strut ++ Daisuke Kuroda – Tropical Valley 307 ++ Gabor Szabo – Caravan ++ Serge Gainsbourg – Requiem pour un con ++ Jack Wilkins – Red Clay ++ Alice Coltrane – Jaya Jaya Rama ++ Air – Moon Fever ++ Andre Previn – Rollerball ++ Brian Bennett – Pendulum Force (excerpt) ++ Deerhunter – Ad Astra ++ Jeff Phelps – Excerpts From Autumn ++ Glenn Mercer – Twenty Nine Palms ++ Guitar Red – Disco From A Space Show ++ Can – All Gates Open ++ David Bowie – Crystal Japan ++ Maston – Swans ++ Paint – Heaven In Farsi ++ Christy Essien – Take Life Easy ++ Myriam Makeba – Xica De Silva ++ David Bowie – Win ++ Rikki Ililonga – Love Is So Strange ++ Ersen – Gonese Don Cicegim ++ The Black Beats – The Mod Trade ++ Medium Medium – So Hungry So Angry ++ Talking Heads – Seen And Not Seen ++ Steel Leg – Unlikely Pub ++ The Only Ones – The Whole of The Law ++ Vivien Goldman – Private Armies Dub ++ Maximum Joy – Let It Take You There ++ David Bowie – A New Career In a New Town / image Kazuo-Shiraga