Tuesday, May 24, 2011

New Arrivals: Michael Hurley & Byron Coley

Byron Coley, C'est la guerre : Early Writings 1978-1983
Frontline writings from the music war

"Coley was born in Manhattan in 1956. He has written extensively about underground culture since the mid-70s. His work for Forced Exposure and Spin made him legendary. This book shows it all started years earlier at NY Rocker and Take It! Since then he has published poetry, writen liner notes for hundreds of records, spewed for more zines than anyone could ever remember and contributed to various anthologies. His previous book was «No Wave» with Thurston Moore.

C'est la guerre is a perfect snapshot, via letters and early articles, of a time of great changes in american music, that of the emergence of new kinds of wild rock, punk or noise, that would extend the explorations of free jazz or of great innovators like Captain Beefheart. Some of the articles included are about David Bowie, Robert Fripp, Fred Frith, Devo, Hüsker Dü, Suicide, Lydia Lunch, Jim Morrison, The Meat Puppets and the minutemen."

Foreword by Mike Watt. Cover drawn & silkscreened by Simon Bossé. 142 pages,
Bilingual (English/French), translated by Marie Frankland (John-Glassco Translation Price 2007).
6.5 x 6.5 inches.

"Byron used to come by SST Records, where I was living at the time. He would help the label with college radio ads. I would ask him about a band or an artist because it seemed that there wasn't anything or anyone in the world of music he wasn't conversant about."
Henry Rollins, LA Weekly, February 2011

Michael Hurley, The Words To The Songs Of Michael Hurley
Lyrics to 19 songs of the Great American Folk Legend.

"Michael Hurley, is an american songwriter reportedly born in 1941 (aka Doc Snock), whose 40 years of songs have been seeping into the folk unconscious (including covers by Cat Power, Yo la tango, Esper and others). Hurley's melodies and words take flight into a world of plenty, inspiring wonder and humour, sin and slowness, laziness and longing. His music is often coined as "outsider folk." His hobo lifestyle indeed could be looked upon as eccentric, but it might be better to regard him as one of the last insiders keeping alive the traditions of the folk troubadour. Hobo-ing around the country, making music since the days Bob Dylan first set foot in NYC Gaslight club, Hurley recorded his first album for legendary Folkways label in 1964 and continued to release albums for Warner Brothers, Rounder or Devendra Banhart's Gnomonsong label. His mid-'70s Have Moicy album was among the top ten for the decade selected by Rolling Stone magazine. While many of his contemporaries are long past their prime (or deceased), Hurley's muse is still intact.

Hurley is considered by fellow musicians as a master of incomparable songwriting skills. It is easy to see why. His songs can be seen as excentric, with characters including werewolves, sign-painters, tea and whiskey-drinkers, pork chops and hot dogs, wild geese, intoxicated lovers and blue navigators but above all they always manage to be moving and funny. The perfection of his craft is even more obvious on paper. The Words to the Songs of Michael Hurley is the first publication ever of Hurley's lyrics. It includes a foreword by critic Byron Coley and a french version by Marie Frankland, winner of the 2007 John-Glassco price for translation."

Cover drawing by Michael Hurley, cover typographic design by Kiva Tanya Stimac. Songs calligraphed by the author. Hand-stiched by Julie Doucet.
Foreword by Byron Coley.
Bilingual edition, translated by Marie Frankland. 48 pages. Format 5,75 x 7,75.

"I don't know what else to say about what he writes and sings, other than that it is gosh-darned great. What kind of music is it? Hell, what kind of weeds does God grow? Let's just shut up and listen and go to where Michael Hurley is. After all, we can always turn around and come back. He can't." -Nick Tosches

These books, and thousands of others, can be purchased from:

Brickbat Books
709 South Fourth Street
Philadelphia, PA 19147

215 592 1207

Open every day,except Monday, 11am to 7pm.

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