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For the past year, Third Man Records has been working closely with Touch and Go Records and the surviving members of Laughing Hyenas to craft deluxe vinyl reissues of the entire Laughing Hyenas' catalog. The seminal Michigan group’s releases have been lovingly re-mastered for vinyl and cut by Bob Weston at Chicago Mastering. Watch a teaser video for the reissue series below...
"These were the mid to late 1980s and in the USA it was a time when so much more of the USA underground post-punk-hardcore-new wave-no wave etc scene (Butthole Surfers, Dinosaur Jr, Green River, Big Black, Mission of Burma et al) just slayed, continually. Each group different and strange and fun and blowing open a hole for the future. Laughing Hyenas were one of the defining jewels in this era and have since come to where fate has brought us all in a dynamic variance of good, better, bad, worse and everything in between."
Meet John Brannon and Larissa (Stolarchuk) Strickland, front people of Negative Approach and L-Seven respectively. John and Larissa were the surrogate "Den Parents" of the Detroit punk rock and hardcore family in the early 80's. They hosted many legendary shows at their place, known across the country as "The Clubhouse" located on the same block as TMR Cass Corridor. Both bands also shared the stage with virtually every touring punk and hardcore band that would dare to set foot in Detroit at The Freezer, The Clubhouse, Bookie's, Clutch Cargos and The Graystone and anywhere else that would put on a show. One such show, L-Seven opened for Australian by way of England newcomers The Birthday Party featuring a young Nick Cave. It has been said that this show is the show that planted the (Bad) seed in John and Larissa's heads, a (Bad) seed that would go on and grow into the criminally underrated but highly influential LAUGHING HYENAS.
The original line up of John (on vocals) and Larissa (switching to guitar), with the addition of the pocket-locked rhythm section of Kevin (Monroe) Strickland (bass) and Jim Kimball (drums) recorded Merry-Go-Round, You Can't Pray A Lie and Life of Crime. These seminal 12"s and the live shows that this line up played around these releases are among the scariest music the world has ever heard or seen. Seriously, life changing stuff. Laughing Hyenas WERE the underground. Brannon had (STILL has) a howling shriek and stage presence unlike any other frontman in history, with the stare of a perverted street evangelist and voice full of pain like gargling shards of glass. Larissa was a guitar strangler in a very true sense. Highly original and influential, she wrangled possessed sounds out of that instrument that redefined what we think of as a "blues riff". She made it scary and real. The rhythm section was downright frightening. Lock tight hillbilly refugees from the hardcore scene.
The HYENAS stormed across the country and the world and made instant musically sympathetic pals with other fledgling bands / boundary pushers like Sonic Youth, Scream, Mudhoney, Minutemen, Husker Du, Pussy Galore, Die Kreuzen and Fugazi. A peer group that suited them quite well.
After the departure of Kevin and Jim to form Mule, John and Larissa added Kevin Reis on Bass and Founding Necros Drummer Todd Swalla for the every bit as fierce Crawl ep. Their final LP, Hard Times, saw one more line up change. Kevin Reis left and one time Gerbil and Necros Ron Sakowski stepped in.
All the Laughing Hyenas records were originally released (and continue to be available digitally) on Chicago-via-Detroit label Touch and Go Records (our partner on these vinyl re-issues). Touch and Go’s catalog also includes the early ‘80s Negative Approach and L-Seven records. Third Man has been working very closely with Corey Rusk and Touch and Go Records as well as the surviving members of the band to make sure that these reissues get the attention they deserve. Each record will include unseen photos and images of "Damn, that would have been a sick show!" flyers as well as testimonials/thoughts/stories/liners by Thurston Moore, Butch Vig, Brian Turner, Ben Swank, Aaron Dilloway, Allyson Baker to name just a few.
Today, we are excited to release three new live albums, its last releases of 2017: 7" records by Viva L'American Death Ray Music and Ó, and a 12" record by Chain and the Gang. Each of these was recorded live in Third Man's famed Blue Room, and a bundle containing all three titles is available for purchase HERE.
V.L.A.D.R.M. began in 1999 as "American Death Ray," the brainchild of Memphis garage scene stalwart Nicholas Ray. Since then, the project has twisted, turned and head-tripped nominally, to its current moniker, and sonically, from Velvets-influenced jams into an amalgam of truly exploratory punk, no wave, electronic and psychedelic rock music. This live 7" will be their first music since their 2013 single, a 7" split released by Memphis big wigs Goner Records. The tracks featured are "The Painter" and "Falling", both previously unreleased!
The latest from the world's greatest frontman, Ian Svenonius, is the excellent live document of Chain and the Gang! Having put out full-lengths with K Records, In the Red Records and Dischord Records, Third Man is proud to join the ranks of Chain disciples in presenting their first ever live recording. This LP captures the raucous yet sagacious social commentary of Svenonius perfectly supplemented by the shaken soulful punk stylings of The Gang. This ain't 3am party dulled garage rock; this is sharp, socio-political and intelligent critique, as many DC artists have had a rich history of representing. This also must be Chain & the Gang's decidedly lo-fi sound at its most crystal.
Ó (formerly Eskimeaux) is the bedroom indie recording project of Brooklyn songwriter and producer Gabrielle Smith. She and her band's live 7" features two intimate yet momentous songs, "Alone at the Party" and "Broken Necks", both from 2015's O.K, the indie pop tour de force released on Double Double Whammy Records. "Broken Necks" is notably arresting as the first 40 seconds is a finger-picked invitation to the audience to join in singing the chorus, only to explode into full band ferocity with Smith's saccharine, solid vocals uniting naturally with her backing band.
On May 19th, Margo Price will headline Nashville's legendary Ryman Auditorium for the first time. Tickets go on sale this Friday, December 8th, and Tyler Childers will support. Ticket and pre-sale info here. Full tour routing below.
This announcement caps a historic year for Price, who put out one of 2017's most acclaimed albums - All American Made. So far Price has landed on year-end lists from FADER, American Songwriter, and Rolling Stone - who say "No other country act, and precious few from any genre, went nearly as deep as Price did this year." 'All American Made' also earned profiles with the New York Times, Vice Noisey, Cosmo, an interview with Terry Gross for Fresh Air, a Daily Show segment, American Songwriter cover story, and a #1 spot on the Billboard Americana chart.
More raves for All American Made:
"An artist with a voice as big as the Batman Building and a facility for wryly updating old-school country conventions" -Pitchfork
"Anyone seeking a new country album will lose their minds over powerhouse Margo Price" –Variety
"One of the best country records of the year" -The Ringer
"Brings the feisty spirit and independence of Loretta Lynn fully forward into the 21st Century" -LA Times
Margo Price tour dates:
Jan 20 – Headliner’s Music Hall – Louisville, KY
Jan 21 – The Ready Room – St. Louis, MO
Jan 23 – Knucklehead’s – Kansas City, MO
Jan 24 – ACM@UCO Performance Lab – Oklahoma City, OK
Jan 26 – Kessler Theater – Dallas, TX
Jan 28 – Sam’s Burger Joint – San Antonio, TX
Jan 30 – Emo’s – Austin, TX
Jan 31 – The Heights Theater – Houston, TX
Feb 1 – Manship Theatre – Baton Rouge, LA
Feb 4-11 – Cayamo Cruise – New Orleans, LA
Feb 18 – The Crescent Ballroom – Phoenix, AZ
Feb 20 – Fox Theatre – Boulder, CO
Feb 21 – Bluebird Theater – Denver, CO
Feb 23 – The State Room – Salt Lake City, UT
Feb 24 – The Olympic – Boise, ID
Feb 25 – Neptune – Seattle, WA
Feb 26 – Revolution Hall – Portland, OR
Feb 28 – The Independent – San Francisco, CA
Mar 1 – The Fonda Theatre – Los Angeles, CA
Mar 2 – Belly Up – Solana Beach, CA
Mar 3 – Pappy & Harriet’s – Pioneertown, CA
Mar 9 – C2C Country 2 Country – Glasgow, UK
Mar 10 – C2C Country 2 Country – Dublin, Ireland
Mar 11 – C2C Country 2 Country – London, UK
May 19 - Ryman Auditorium - Nashville, TN
Join us December 10th from 10-4 as Third Man Records' Nashville headquarters brings everyone together to spread a little holiday cheer and celebrate friendship old and new. We will have free activities for kiddos including a bounce house, Mr. Steve performance, haircuts, face painting, and holiday crafts, a few things to keep kiddos-at-heart happy, like used record bins from your favorite local record shops, holiday cocktails, family photo opps, raffles of exclusive records and merchandise, a charitable giving, and DJ's with the best taste in Nashville will be there to provide holiday cheer, plus plenty of present ideas to help you get through your list with a portion of the day's retail proceeds going to benefit Detroit Goodfellows. Arcade Nashville will also be in the Nashville storefront selling some of their merch.
The limited, exclusive deluxe edition (includes limited edition 7"single) of the best-selling children's book We're Going To Be Friends will be for sale at our storefront for the first time to the general public. Even more exciting, its author, our own Jack White, will be present for a special reading and book signing that afternoon.
Here's how to be present for this special appearance:
In addition to all the free fun, tickets for the signing will be available first come, first served beginning at 10am in the storefront. Tickets are complementary with purchase of We're Going To Be Friends (standard or exclusive edition) or a toy (brand new and unwrapped, please) to donate to Toys for Tots. Half of the available tickets will be reserved for those with children in their party, and space is very limited.
The reading will begin at 2pm in the Blue Room, followed by a book signing. Only We're Going To Be Friends books, purchased in advance or day-of, are eligible for autographing.
Full schedule of the day's activities:
King of cult John Waters has long been an idol of the the creative hive of maladjusted artsy types here at Third Man Records. Earlier this year, we released the spoken word accompaniment to "Make Trouble," Waters' subversive commencement speech published earlier this year by Algonquin Books, and read here by Waters himself. Make Trouble, the record, is available digitally and as a 7" of the same name, featuring Waters' reading of his commencement speech at RISD in its entirety. The recordings are produced by Grammy-winner Ian Brennan (Tinariwen, Ramblin' Jack Elliot, Zomba Prison Project).
Waters will make dreams come true as he joins us in-the-flesh at our Third Man Records Nashville storefront (623 7th Avenue South) on Sunday, December 17th from 6-7pm. Limited, exclusive, red vinyl copies will be available for sale while supplies last. Arrive early to guarantee your place in line, as the signing will end at 7 on-the-dot regardless of line length.