It's hard to keep up with the People in a Position to Know Records, I hate to say it but I almost dread checking out their site, just because I know there'll be at least 3 new things I have to get and/or talk about, and not just, "Oh I pressed a record from a great band" but I handcut music exclusive to this release with a lathe cutter in my garage! And I letterpress printed them myself at a nearby printshop! I added the exclamation points because PIAPTK is such an inspiration when it comes to elevating the lowly single to and I almost hate to say it, something to hang on the wall and handle with white museum gloves.
Take this R. Stevie Moore and Billy Anderson release, it's hard enough to find R. Stevie stuff on vinyl, and it's usually way out my price range on ebay, and then to have such a cool handscreened, spraypainted matchbook style sleeve puts this over the top for just $5. The track is a great poppy, off kilter, falsetto Stevie number. Super clean production, full of high hat and electric organ bouncing along, I sincerely hope to still be half as much messing around with tracks for this long. To still have that sense of experimentation...totally inspiring. Only 400, a steal.
Then that Wooden Wand box set, and not just any box, a handmade wooden box housing 6 disks of James' archives. Mike assures fans that this isn't just pieces of unfinished songs or alternate tracks, PIAPTK was given free reign to choose work from the hundreds of unreleased songs over his 15 year career...too amazing. The gold vinyl is sold out, but black is still available...check out the disk listing:
Disc One: Hard Bargains – This disc contains the more “rocking” Toth tunes, mostly full band style recording with a heavier groove to it.
Disc Two: Roadside Peaches – This disc contains the lesser seen Toth song-type... the sincere, sweet, love songs.
Disc Three: Visiting Hours and Other Missteps - Full of the more Downer-type tunes. But don’t get me wrong, there are plenty of giggle-worthy moments despite the somber tone. A good disc for fans of Born Bad.
Disc Four: Get Right With The Goddess – A really good mixed bag of mostly acoustic tunes.
Disc Five: Preparing An Audience - Much like Tom Waits, Wand often writes tunes from the perspective of a character. Whereas Waits’ protagonist is a down-on-his-luck, hard living, skid row bum, Toth’s is more of a self-loathing, hard living, smarmy Southern jerk. This disc compiles some of the best tunes from that perspective.
Disc Six: Five Alive / First Songs – A collection of the lower-fidelity tunes, many of which are very old, and give a really good glimpse into a little different Wand than you are used to. Runs the gamut of recording type and vocal style.
You can even make an offer on his picnic plate 7" wedding favor discs! Jad Fair, Carcrashlander...only twenty of these exist! It's like you were there! I can't stop the exclamation!