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Dean & Britta live stream
Dean & Britta live stream

Dean & Britta have announced another couple of live stream shows for the 26th September - they will be playing an early show at 12:00 PDT, which is a suitable time for European fans, and a later show at 18:00 PDT.

Once again the shows will be streamed using Veeps and tickets are $11.50 per show (of $23 with an audio download after the event).

More details and links to buy tickets can be found here:

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Galaxir 500 - Copenhagen Twitter listening party
Galaxir 500 - Copenhagen Twitter listening party

On Thursday evening, ahead of Galaxie 500’s Copenhagen arriving on vinyl for the first time on Saturday, (Damon Krukowski @dada_drummer) will be on Twitter listening to the album and chatting/commenting on it - and answering questions.

The online listening party will be hosted by @newburycomics and we’ll all be pressing play at 7PM EDT on Thursday 27th August (that’s midnight in the UK and Portugal and 1am in the rest of western Europe) - follow the hashtag #Galaxie500xNewbury.

Listen along using one of the following methods (or one of your own)

Copenhagen will be hitting your local indie record store of choice in the first of the Record Store Day drops on Saturday - check with your store to find out how they’re managing things in the current climate - some are opening physically while others will be doing online sales only. Good luck.

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Lovely new vinyl This Is Our Music had arrived. Details link in profile #galaxie500 #thisisourmusic #vinyl #lp

OK, I’ve left this a bit late so timescales are a bit short but I think, if I can get enough interest I’d like to do something for the 30th anniversary of This Is Our Music which will be in October.

I’d like a cover version of each track on the album and, if possible a piece of visual art (preferably square or as close to square as possible).

This will be released as a CD(R) and a booklet.

If you’re interested in contributing please give me a shout and suggest which track you might like to cover (it might help if you have a second choice in case the first has already been assigned).

Please NOTE the short timescale - I would like all contributions in by the end of September.

If you can contribute please get in touch - if you know a band or artist who might like to contribute please pass this information on to them.

Track listing

  • Fourth of July
  • Hearing Voices
  • Spook
  • Summertime
  • Way Up High
  • Listen, the Snow Is Falling
  • Sorry
  • Melt Away
  • King of Spain Part Two

This is what was released for On Fire’s 30th last year - still available to buy over on Bandcamp!

On Fire | 30 - deluxe package

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Luna - Marquee Moon
Luna - Marquee Moon

1996 to 1999 era Luna have just released a cover of Television’s Marquee Moon. The track was recorded in Auckland (Justin), Los Angeles (Dean), Austin (Lee) and San Francisco (Sean) in June 2020 and mixed by Justin.

Here is how we did it. Lee Wall laid down a drum track at his home studio in Austin. Sean mapped out and played the bulk of the electric guitars in San Francisco, I sang and added a bit more guitar here in Los Angeles, and Justin recorded the bass in Auckland, New Zealand (where he has lived since leaving the band some 20 years ago); he also mixed the track and made a very cool video which he assembled from iPhone footage we each sent him.

It is available to buy for $1.99 (or more) on Bandcamp.

Update: Now with a video…

During the current pandemic, with Luna members spread around the globe, our former bassist Justin Harwood suggested that we record Television’s epic track “Marquee Moon.” We recorded the song one instrument at a time in four different locations; Lee Wall recorded his drum track in Austin, Sean Eden tracked the guitars in San Francisco, Justin played the Fender bass in Auckland, New Zealand, and Dean Wareham sang and added guitar in Los Angeles. Britta Phillips sat this one out but does appear in the video. Justin Harwood mixed the song and assembled the video from iPhone footage made by the band members.

Luna - Marquee Moon (2020)

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Dean & Britta - Quarantine Box (PIAPTK, 2020)
Dean & Britta - Quarantine Box (PIAPTK, 2020)

Available now from Dean Wareham’s website is this lovely box set of lathe-cut singles all recorded during Dean & Britta’s lockdown in Echo Park either during their live sessions or in their home studio. They are also available from the PIAPTK website

The box-set contains six square, clear plastic, two-sided 7” singles and will come with a bonus star shaped (although … is that a star?), one-sided single.

Track listing as follows:

Disc 1

  • Massachusetts (The Bee Gees)
  • Air (The Incredible String Band)

Disc 2

  • Sadness (Donovan)
  • Ride Into The Sun (The Velvet Underground)

Disc 3

  • Neon Lights (Kraftwerk)
  • Neon Lights (Holy Shit remix)

Disc 4

  • I’m So Bored With the USA (The Clash)
  • Drive (The Cars)

Disc 5

  • Most of the Time (Bob Dylan)
  • Indian Summer (Beat Happening)

Disc 6

  • He Dines Out On Death (Cristina)
  • 23 Minutes in Brussels (Luna)

These six singles can also be bought separately for $12.99 and includes a download of all the tracks.

Bonus “star” shaped single only available with the box

  • Parking Lot (Galaxie 500)

Buy from Dean Wareham’s shop or the PIAPTK website for $74.99 plus postage - there’s a warning about international shipping being rubbish so … make your choice!

Related link: And 99 cents my ass - Justin Harwood (for FuzzyWuzzy 1999)

You can also buy downloads of all the tracks except Plastic Bird from Dean & Britta’s Bandcamp

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Luna - Penthouse cassette (Beggars Banquet, 1995)

Happy 25th birthday to Luna’s third album, the masterpiece that is Penthouse!

Obviously an efficiently run fan-site would have been ready for such a milestone but as yesterday was the anniversary and this morning I’m hastily throwing together this celebration it would seem I’ve rather failed in that!

But here goes anyway:

Laura Lee Davies in Time Out, August 1995

In the opening “Chinatown” and the lilting “Moon Palace” the album sprawls its soft, sleek self out like a pet waiting to be adored
[…]
Whatever the mood, though, “Penthouse” is Dean Wareham’ achieving low-slung, urban cool without having to try too hard, which is the only way it should be done.

Stephen Dalton in NME, 12 August 1995

It’s a safe bet that Dean Wareham’s record collection is huge,meticulously catalogued and cross referenced to death. His anal fanboyapproach has often stymied previous Luna outings with AOR staidness,but now, perhaps mindful of this, he’s made his most feisty album yet.The Prozac has worn off, his eyelids are propped up, and Luna areready to rock. Sort of.

Mark Luffman in Melody Maker, 12 August 1995

“Penthouse” is one of those records with its own internal logic, one of those records that, for one delicious moment, shifts your perspective. After playing it, the next dozen records you play, no matter what they are, will all sound strangely WRONG.

Dean was interviewed about Penthouse for the Life of the Record podcast

It was a good time to be in Luna. We were having fun, I think. I mean not that there weren’t some struggles in the making of this record, and was it a little more difficult than we anticipated. But yeah, I guess we took like, I’d say this record took seven weeks to make, which was certainly the longest I had spent making a record. But that’s nothing compared to some other people. When you’re signed to a multi-record deal to a major label, there’s this impetus I suppose to get off the road and you’re like, “Ok we better make a record so we can get paid again” (laughs). There’s good and bad in that. It’s not a terribly good reason to make a record but on the other hand actually it is a good reason to make a record (laughs). It’s pretty understandable. And like I say, it gets you working.
Well Penthouse remains my favorite Luna record. It’s unusual that you hear a record that works from beginning to end and I think this one does that just kind of casts a spell and maintains this mood from track one to track ten. Often times, it’s just like two interesting songs and a bunch of filler. But I think this one, Penthouse, really captured us at our best.

The always fab NYCTaper has a couple of recordings of Luna playing the album in full:

In October 2015 Luna played Penthouse in full for the first time in Atlanta.

In October 2019 Luna played three albums over three nights at The Bowery Ballroom, here’s a full download of the Penthouse show.

The album, famously, turns up in Rolling Stone’s 100 best albums of the 90s

Dean Wareham made his name with the Eighties dream-pop trio Galaxie 500, but he really found his muse in these scandalously beautiful guitar ballads. His foxy voice slinks along the languid guitars as he plumbs his foolish heart in the back of a New York cab, going home alone after another night of fancy drinks and lucky toasts. Wareham purrs some sly one-liners (“It’s no fun reading fortune cookies to yourself”) but the music celebrates the pleasures of being too young, too rich, too pretty and too single, shopping for true love while getting lost in Chinatown.

Back in 2017 a double LP deluxe edition of Penthouse was released for Record Store Day - I think some Spotify regions might have it to listen to - but if not it’s worth hunting down - you can stream/download it from Amazon.

I Hope the band don’t mind me popping this up here but this is an early/rough of Moon Palace from the Penthouse sessions:

Audio: Luna - Moon Palace (Penthouse outtake, 1995)

Source: Penthouse Rough Mixes and Outtakes

Penthouse deluxe (2017)

… better late than never - happy birthday you beauty!


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Galaxie 500 (photo R. Deluze)
Galaxie 500 (photo R. Deluze)

In the far distant past, before all of … this, this year’s Record Store Day back in April was to include the first ever vinyl release of Galaxie 500’s live album Copenhagen … and to accompany that release was planned a concert of Galaxie 500 covers at Roght Trade in Brooklyn …

… and then …

… but, the vinyl release of Copenhagen will still be released, that’s happening in the first of the Record Store Day drops on the 28th August - and while the concert can’t happen some of the performers have recorded locked-down home videos which are going to be presented online in the run up to release day.

For the twenty weekdays from today (Monday 3rd August) until release day one video will be released online each day featuring a host of talented artists covering Galaxie 500 songs, some very familiar names will be cropping up featuring members (or former members) of bands such as Beat Happening, Sonic Youth, Mercury Rev, The Feelies and The Pains of Being Young at Heart

The website is here:

… and Rolling Stone has some details and hints at what’s upcoming:

The series, curated by David Newgarden (formerly of WFMU around the time Galaxie 500 were active), opens with Kiwi Jr. covering Tugboat.

Here’s a YouTube playlist of all 24 covers in the series.

Galaxie 500 Copenhagen - Record Store Day 2020 edition
Galaxie 500 Copenhagen - Record Store Day 2020 edition

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Britta looks

Last night Dean & Britta played their third fourth livestreamed concert since lockdown and the first one at a sensible time for European fans. For this one they also roped in Roger Brogan to help with the sound and to play drums.

Dean calls the helpdesk

The duo have decided to used the Veeps platform for the concerts which consensus seems to suggest was a wise decision as the sound quality is pretty good although for the first ten minutes of last night’s performance you wouldn’t have known that as the show started without sound. After a couple of minutes of their opener the message that the only people who could hear the show were the three folk in D&B’s living room the event ground to a halt. With some knob twiddling and a call to tech support things were finally resolved and the concert restarted with My Rifle, My Pony and Me from Dean and Cheval Sombre’s album of cowboy songs from a couple of years back.

Once the sound was restored it became clear that this show was a step-up from previous ones, the addition of drums and Roger’s hand at the engineering wheel was certainly making a difference - next up was Galaxie 500’s Leave The Planet followed by Opal’s Hear The Wind Blow.

The set continued with a run of Galaxie 500 tracks with Dean & Britta’s You Turned My Head Around slotted in the middle (always a joy to hear and see Britta during that one). Dean also gave a couple of poetry readings and threw in some banter and told some stories.

Among the Galaxie 500 tracks was a beautiful rendition of Sorry - written by Damon and a heartbreaking insight into a band crumbling - “Seems it doesn’t make a difference, and were sorry all the time” - it was beautiful to hear and probably hasn’t been performed live by any former Galaxie 500 members since their last tour in 1991 - the late Tom Rapp covered it at a Terrastock show back in 1998.

The show finished with an encore of a cover of Donovan’s Sadness and then a perfect Ceremony.

B-a-a-a-a-b-y

Definitely the best of the three shows so far - and an absolute joy to see them live. The Veeps platform has a chat that was quite active during the show and was nice to have some level of interaction with other fans … lovely to see so many familiar faces in there.

You can still buy and watch the show on Veeps for a week or so - so head over and check it out.

The one thing that was really missed was band/audience and inter-audience feedback.

  • the band tried to keep an eye on the chat but it clearly isn’t possible in any meaningful way - the delays and the silence of it mean that they aren’t really reacting at all - this was most blatantly clear during the silent rendtion of the opening track - the fact that it took two minutes before Dean & Britta realised that nobody could hear was telling.
  • audience interaction with each other, while better, was also hard. Chat went past too quickly at times - the Veeps platform didn’t allow @ comments or private comments or for the audience to break into smaller groups (not sure if this would work at all).
  • the inability to actually hear an audience made things feel a little off, it’s almost as if you want a second stream so the audience and the band could see and hear each other - again not sure how/if this would work but I missed that probably more than anything else - I’m not a social person but I do miss being among fans!

Dean suggested that they may release audio of the shows at some point … so watch this space. He also mentioned the series of lathe cut singles that would be released soon - not too much additional information, except that their cover of Donovan’s Sadness would be included. Again… watch this space for more details.

Dean & Britta

Roger

Full setlist (posted to Dean’s Instagram):

  • My Rifle, My Pony and Me
  • Leave The Planet
  • Hear The Wind Blow
  • When Will You Come Home
  • poem: The Canoeing Trip by Russell Eldon
  • King of Spain
  • Parking Lot
  • Snowstorm
  • You Turned My Head Around
  • Blue Thunder
  • poem: Extract from The Lichtenberg Figures by Ben Lerner
  • Sorry
  • Victory Garden
  • Don’t Let Our Youth Go to Waste
  • Sadness
  • Ceremony

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Dean & Britta - Massachusetts / Air
Dean & Britta - Massachusetts / Air

Dean Wareham gave a 50 second sneak preview of a new Dean & Britta lathe-cut single on his Instagram yesterday. The single will be live versions of The Bee Gees Massachusetts and The Incredbible String Band’s Air, both recorded during one of their live stream concerts.

It’s another clear, square, plastic disc - more details when I get them - watch this space.


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Bandcamp

A collection of AHFoW related releases on Bandcamp

A collection of AHFoW related releases on Bandcamp
Bandcamp releases
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On Fire | 30

A 30th anniversary celebration of Galaxie 500's masterpiece

On Fire 30 CD sleeve (design: John Conley)
Buy On Fire | 30

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