Urusei Yatsura - We Are Urusei Yatsura 2LP (clear vinyl)
Urusei Yatsura - We Are Urusei Yatsura 2LP (Rocket Girl/UK)
Listening Notes: 1993 manic pop from Scotland draped in rollicking feedback, walls of noise adjacent to the year that punk broke scene (Pavement! Nirvana! Sonic Youth! Dino Jr!) rolled into one joyously chaotic band, 30 year anniversary reissues that still sound fresh - perhaps preserved by their cocoon of distortion, and I gotta be honest here ... on top of top notch explosive indie rock, they could have also lead double lives as models in the grunge era of casual cool kids.
You probably don't know this band - but you should. BURIED TREASURE ALERT! Best reissue of 2023? Likely!
Mood: Slackers gone wild
Release date 3/3/2023
Limited edition clear vinyl 2xLP
Rocket Girl Records announces a remastered 30th anniversary reissue of We Are Urusei Yatsura. The debut full length album featuring the original album in full plus a second LP of previously unreleased demos and B-Sides.
“I am so excited about the forthcoming double vinyl album which we have been working on for some time” said Vinita Joshi, Label Head at Rocket Girl.
In the days before “landfill indie" and in rebellion against a developing Britpop orthodoxy, there were some weird but melodic bands coming of age outside London that drew inspiration from the US underground and the sparkly retro-futurism of Japan. Primitive guitar noise with art rock leanings, post punk DIY and fanzine culture. The best known of these bands was maybe Urusei Yatsura; “noisy stars”, named in honour of Rumiko Takahashi, legendary manga creator.
Back in 1996, after several increasingly well-received 7"s, the band travelled to Leamington Spa to record their debut album with John Rivers, producer of Swell Maps and Glasgow scene godparents, The Pastels. The resulting album won the group legions of new fans and gained them their first Independent #1 chart placing, alongside peers Ash and Super Furry Animals.
“These were fertile years in Glasgow, a scene with no name, no single sound, where the magic thread tying everyone together was words and works so personal, they couldn’t be mistaken for anyone else’s. We Are Urusei Yatsura is a cascade of ‘why not?’ thinking. The way ‘Phasers on Stun’ spirals into ‘Sola Kola’; the sunburned 23-second improv at the end of ‘Pachinko’; the slack-echoing strings of the outro to ‘Road Song’ sprayed with the shrapnel of toy electronics. Pure pop magic, Ren & Stimpy on upstairs, ray-guns, Ian’s homemade walkie-talkie speaker, a beatbox, all sealed with a “Talking Tina” doll’s emphatic endorsement: “I love it”” – Nick Soulsby
The vinyl-only double LP set comprises the original 1996 album recorded by John Rivers, accompanied with an extra disk of unreleased demos, rare singles and B-sides which have not been available since the '90s. It documents the time leading up to the release of the LP and the singles that came from it, capturing the development, lost pop moments and essential experiments from the eccentric and joyful Glasgow band. The cover has been completely remixed using archive photos and artwork from the time, with new interviews and extensive notes. The release marks 30 years since the official birthday of the band, 9/3/93.
“When I drove the transit van that took them down to Leamington Spa to record their first proper LP, there was a sense of quiet, assured anticipation. I couldn’t wait to hear it and when I came back a couple of weeks later to pick them back up, I remember so clearly when they played it from the van’s tape deck. Fergus and Graham were hunched over, focusing intently on what they wanted to change about the mix. The reverb wasn’t right or something. Maybe they didn’t like how high the vocals were in the mix. I said to them, you’re listening to the details, but missing what is most important–this is a fantastic record! It was. It is. It is a fantastic record. They were a brilliant live band and I am so lucky to have been able to have been there to see their formation.” – Alex Kapranos.
“[The record is] a document of something. Who you are, where you are: We Are Urusei Yatsura, here we are.” – Graham Kemp
2. First Day On A New Planet
3. Pow R Ball
4. Kewpies Like Watermelon
5. Phasers On Stun/Sola Kola
6. Black Hole Love
7. Velvy Bood
8. Plastic Ashtray
9. Death 2 Everyone
13. Road Song
14. It Is
15. On Yr Mind
16. Teen Dream
18. Burriko Girl
19. Got The Sun
20. Silver Krest
21. Sucker/Kitty Litter
22. Lo-Fi Scary Balloons
23. The Power Of Negative Thinking/The Love That Brings You Down