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The Record Exchange - Culture Spot

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Go Listen Boise is a non-profit, all-volunteer organization with the mission of fostering a vibrant and diverse musical culture in the Boise area.

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[ 2013 staff picks ]

2013 staff picks

After weeks of scrutiny, Record Exchange staffers have completed their 2013 Top 10 lists, and leading up to Christmas we're posting individual lists here on the website. You can also visit the store to view all the lists in realtime and shop our special '13 Staff Picks display. Let the judgment begin!

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Visit The Record Exchange's Amazon Marketplace store to shop for rare and discount CDs, vinyl, DVDs and books. Live in Boise? Order online and arrange for in-store pickup!

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the right price at the rx

Think local. Think indie. Think $9.99 CDs at Record Exchange.

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rsd exclusives list

Okay, here it is: the Record Store Day exclusives list. Over 400 limited-edition CDs, vinyl LPs, 7-inches and more available Saturday, April 19 at The Record Exchange. Follow the link to peruse the list and read about Record Exchange RSD events!

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The Record Exchange is a proud partner with Boise's Payette Brewing Company! Enjoy Payette Brewing Company beer (and for free!) at Record Exchange events such as Record Store Day, the annual holiday Bonus Club Sale and our singer-songwriter Birthday Bash celebrations!

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[ rx top 10 ]

rx top 10

1. Ritual in Repeat
Tennis
2. Songs of Innocence
U2
3. Art Official Age
Prince
4. Plectrumelectrum
Prince and 3rd Eye Girl
5. You’re Dead
Flying Lotus
6. Hozier
Hozier
7. Standing in the Breach
Jackson Browne
8. Down Where the Spirit Meets the Bone
Lucinda Williams
9. This is All Yours
Alt-J
10. Cheek to Cheek
Tony Bennett and Lady Gaga

[ krbx card savings! ]

krbx card savings!

The Record Exchange is proud to be part of Radio Boise's KRBX Card program! Present your card on Sunday and New Release Tuesday (6-9 p.m.) and get 20% off all gift shop items and 20% off used CDs, vinyl, DVD, Blu-ray and cassettes!

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JOHN FULLBRIGHT IN-STORE TUESDAY, OCT. 21 (6PM) – OPENING FOR PATTY GRIFFIN AT THE EGYPTIAN THEATRE!

fullbright-muskogee-jun2014-1316-vfarmer-bw

Grammy-nominated Americana artist John Fullbright will perform live at The Record Exchange (1105 W. Idaho St.) at 6 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 21. As always, this Record Exchange in-store event is free and all ages. Fullbright is opening for Patty Griffin at the Egyptian Theatre later that evening and we have tickets for sale at the store!

ABOUT JOHN FULLBRIGHT

“What’s so bad about happy?” John Fullbright sings on the openfullbrighting track of his new album, ‘Songs.’ It’s a play on the writer’s curse, the notion that new material can only come through heartbreak or depression, that great art is only born from suffering.

“A normal person, if they find themselves in a position of turmoil or grief, they’ll say, ‘I need to get out of this as fast as I can,’” says Fullbright. “A writer will say, ‘How long can I stay in this until I get something good?’ And that’s a bullshit way to look at life,” he laughs.

That plainspoken approach is part of what’s fueled the young Oklahoman’s remarkable rise. It was just two years ago that Fullbright released his debut studio album, ‘From The Ground Up’ to a swarm of critical acclaim. The LA Times called the record “preternaturally self-assured,” while NPR hailed him as one of the 10 Artists You Should Have Known in 2012, saying “it’s not every day a new artist…earns comparisons to great songwriters like Townes Van Zandt and Randy Newman, but Fullbright’s music makes sense in such lofty company.” The Wall Street Journal crowned him as giving one of the year’s 10 best live performances, and the album also earned him the ASCAP Foundation’s Harold Adamson Lyric Award. If there was any doubt that his debut announced the arrival of a songwriting force to be reckoned with, it was put to rest when ‘From The Ground Up’ was nominated for Best Americana Album at the GRAMMY Awards, which placed Fullbright alongside some of the genre’s most iconic figures, including Bonnie Raitt.

“I never came into this with a whole lot of expectations,” says Fullbright. “I just wanted to write really good songs, and with that outlook, everything else is a perk. The fact that we went to LA and played “Gawd Above” in front of a star-studded audience [at the GRAMMY pre-tel concert], never in my life would I have imagined that.”

But for Fullbright, it hasn’t been all the acclaim that means the most to him, but rather his entrance into a community of songwriters whose work he admires.

“When I started out, I was all by myself in a little town in Oklahoma where whatever you wanted, you just made it yourself,” he explains. “I didn’t grow up around musicians or like-minded songwriters, but I grew up around records. One of the most fulfilling things about the last two years is that now I’m surrounded by like-minded people in a community of peers. You don’t feel so alone anymore.”

If there’s a recurring motif that jumps out upon first listen to ‘Songs,’ it’s the act of writing, which is one Fullbright treats with the utmost respect. “When I discovered Townes Van Zandt, that’s when I went, ‘You know, this is something to be taken pretty damn seriously,’” says Fullbright. “‘This is nothing to do with business, it has to do with art and identity.’ You can write something that’s going to outlast you, and immortality though song is a big draw.”

But just as important to Fullbright as writing is careful editing. “I can write a first verse and a chorus fairly easily, and it’s important just to document it at the time and come back to it later,” he explains. “That’s the labor, when you really get your tools out and figure out how to craft something that’s worthwhile.”

Fullbright inhabits his songs’ narrators completely, his old-soul voice fleshing out complex characters and subtle narratives with a gifted sense of understatement.

“My songwriting is a lot more economical now,” he explains. “I like to say as much as I can in 2 minutes 50 seconds, and that’s kind of a point of pride for me.”

The arrangements on ‘Songs’ are stripped down to their cores and free of ornamentation. Fullbright’s guitar and piano anchor the record, while a minimalist rhythm section weaves in and out throughout the album. That’s not to say these are simple songs; Fullbright possesses a keen ear for memorable melody and a unique approach to harmony, moving through chord progressions far outside the expected confines of traditional folk or Americana. The performances are stark and direct, though, a deliberate approach meant to deliver the songs in their purest and most honest form.

“I’m a better performer and writer and musician now, and I wanted a record that would reflect that,” he says. “We tracked a lot of it live, just me and a bass player in a room with a few microphones. The basis is a live performance and everything else supports that. I think you just get as much energy and skill as you can into a take, and then start building from there. And what we found is that you don’t have to add too much to that.”

The songs also reflect how drastically Fullbright’s life has changed since the release of ‘From The Ground Up,’ which launched him into a rigorous schedule of international touring. “Going Home” finds him appreciating the simple pleasure of heading back to Oklahoma, which he likens to The Odyssey. “When you’re gone for so long, once you know you’re headed in the right direction to your own bed and your own home, that’s one of the greatest feelings you can have,” he says.

“I Didn’t Know” is a song he premiered live at concert hosted by Emmylou Harris & Rodney Crowell, a story he tells still somewhat incredulously, while “When You’re Here” is a somber piano love song, and “The One That Lives Too Far’ is a raw account of the strain that distance can put on a romantic relationship. “All That You Know,” which features just voice and Wurlitzer, implores listeners to appreciate what’s right in front of them, and the finger-picked “Keeping Hope Alive” is a song of resilience through hard times.

To be sure, ‘Songs’ has its moments of darkness, tracks born from pain and heartbreak, but for a craftsman like Fullbright, there are few greater joys than carving emotion into music, taking a stab at that lofty goal of immortality through song. It makes him—and his fans—happy, and there’s nothing bad about that.

NEW RELEASE TUESDAY: PRIMUS, BUDOS BAND, ANNIE LENNOX, NEIL DIAMOND, PLUS JOHN FULLBRIGHT IN-STORE SET AND VINYL TUESDAY SAVINGS ALL DAY!

vinyl tuesday poster reduced 475It’s New Release Tuesday, and our new Vinyl Tuesday sale continues this week – customers receive up to $5 in used vinyl* with every $25 in new vinyl purchased all day long every Tuesday!

We’re also hosting a John Fullbright in-store performance at 6 p.m. Tuesday. He’s opening for Patty Griffin at the Egyptian and we’re thrilled he’s playing a set at the RX beforehand. Don’t miss it!

* Must be redeemed at time of purchase. Offer valid during regular business hours (10am-9pm) on Tuesdays only. The Record Exchange will not issue store credit for any unused portion of the Vinyl Tuesday used vinyl bonus.

Here’s a quick look at the bright and shiny new releases this week at The Record Exchange:

CD

Primus – Primus and the Chocolate Factory

Budos Band – Burnt Offering

Annie Lennox – Nostalgia

Neil Diamond – Melody Road

Cold War Kids – Hold My Home

Slipknot – 5: The Gray Chapter

Little Big Town – Pain Killer

Bonobo – The North Borders Tour: Live

Sleater-Kinney – Various Reissues

Scott Walker and Sunn O))) – Soused

Jessie Ware – Tough Love

Horse Feathers – So It Is With Us

Ben Howard – I Forget Where We Are

Jerry Garcia – Garcialive 5: December 31st, 1975 Berkeley, California

Mark Lanegan – Phantom Radio

Aretha Franklin – Sings the Great Diva Classics

Thurston Moore – Best Day

T.I. – Paperwork (deluxe edition also available)

Bush – Man on the Run (deluxe edition also available)

Susan Boyle – Hope

Various Artists – Master Mix: Red Hot + Arthur Russell

Various Artists – This Ain’t No Mouse Music!

Various Artists – Tru Thoughts 15th Anniversary

Kiesza – Sound of a Woman

Blaze Ya Dead Homie – Gang Rags: Reborn

Transit – Joyride

Echosmith – Talking Dreams

Bear’s Den – Islands

Jukebox the Ghost – Jukebox the Ghost

Avid Dancer – I Want to See You Dance

The Men They Couldn’t Hang – Defiant

Rory Gallagher – Irish Tour Special Edition

Rory Block – Hard Luck Child: A Tribute to Skip James

Alice Cooper – Raise the Dead: Live from Wacken

Dennis DeYoung – The Music of Styx Live in Los Angeles

Boyz II Men – Collide

Dan Mintz – The Stranger

VINYL

Primus – Primus and the Chocolate Factory (numbered indie exclusive white vinyl version also available)

Sleater-Kinney – Various Reissues

Sleater-Kinney – Start Together (box set)

Budos Band – Burnt Offering

Scott Walker and Sunn O))) – Soused

Mineral – Endserenading

Mineral – The Power of Failing

Coheed and Cambria – In Keeping Secrets of Silent Earth: 3

Thurston Moore – Best Day

Mark Lanegan – Phantom Radio

Horse Feathers – So It Is With Us

Nightmares on Wax – Mind Elevation

Nightmares on Wax – Smokers Delight

Of Montreal – The Gay Parade

Slipknot – 5: The Gray Chapter

Circle Jerks – Live at the House of Blues

Jeff the Brotherhood – Dig the Classics

The Lights – Little Machines

DVD/BLU-RAY

Alice Cooper – Raise the Dead: Live from Wacken DVD

Deep Purple with Orchestra – Live in Verona

October 20th, 2014

RECORD EXCHANGE TOP 10 SELLERS (WEEK ENDING OCTOBER 19, 2014)

tennis1. Ritual in Repeat, Tennis
2. Songs of Innocence, U2
3. Art Official Age, Prince
4. Plectrumelectrum, Prince and 3rd Eye Girl
5. You’re Dead, Flying Lotus
6. Hozier, Hozier
7. Standing in the Breach, Jackson Browne
8. Down Where the Spirit Meets the Bone, Lucinda Williams
9. This is All Yours, Alt-J
10. Cheek to Cheek, Tony Bennett and Lady Gaga

October 17th, 2014

SATURDAY’S BLUE AND ORANGE SALE EMAIL HAS BEEN SENT; CHECK YOUR INBOX NOW AND SAVE TOMORROW!

If you’re a Record Exchange email subscriber, check your inbox now for the post-game details on Saturday’s Blue and Orange Sale on used CDs, DVDs and vinyl LPs.

If you’re not a subscriber yet and want all the details, email us HERE today with the subject “Blue and Orange Sale” and we’ll send you the info. Go Broncos!

October 17th, 2014

BARREL OF LAUGHS PHOTO CONTEST: VISIT THE RX, GET WEIRD, WIN PRIZES!

barrel of laughs contestIn case you haven’t noticed — and it’s kinda hard not to — there’s a lot of construction going on outside The Record Exchange (as well as a lot of nothing despite blocked parking spots and other wacky impediments to our natural order of things). And that means barrels, oh so many orange barrels.

With that, we give you The Record Exchange Barrel of Laughs Photo Contest.

The rules are pretty simple: Visit The Record Exchange, take a funny/strange photo (preferably of you and/or some friends) that somehow incorporates the store and surrounding construction, post it to our Facebook, Twitter or Instagram page with the hashtag #rxbarreloflaughs and we’ll select first-place, second-place and third-place winners.

What exactly does a winning photo make? Basically, it has to make us laugh and/or creep us out. Suggestions for accomplishing this include befriending an orange barrel (inappropriate behavior, while championed, has to fall within the parameters of various social media photo guidelines), incorporating real live construction workers or recreating a scene from your favorite movie set in a post-industrial wasteland from the near-distant future. In short, wow us with your creativity.

The prizes are as follows:

First place – $25 Record Exchange Gift Card, vinyl LP, album cover canvas print and T-shirt prize pack from Royal Blood (who successfully drowned out the din of the construction with their blistering Record Exchange in-store) and a pair of tickets to an upcoming Duck Club Presents show of your choice*.

Second place – $10 Record Exchange Gift Card, Delta Spirit Into the Wide vinyl LP and a pair of tickets to an upcoming Duck Club Presents show of your choice*.

Third place – $10 Record Exchange Gift Card and a pair of tickets to an upcoming Duck Club Presents show of your choice*.

Record Exchange Facebook: facebook.com/recordexchange
Record Exchange Twitter: twitter.com/recordexchange
Record Exchange Instagram: instagram.com/therecordexchange
Deadline to enter? Well, we’re really not sure. When the construction is finally over and the barrels have been removed, we’ll consider the contest over. But that could take while.
* Tickets subject to availability.