All 8 tour albums
finally get a vinyl release. Check latest tour dates, below, along with the “Two Silver Trees” video.
By Fred Mills
Those border radio avatars and desert noir doctors of Tucson,
Calexico, are assembling an 8-LP vinyl box set for a proposed fall release.
Titled Road Atlas, it will appear on
their own Our Soil, Our Strength imprint and comprise the band’s 8 tour albums
they have released starting with 1999’s Road
Map and running through last year’s soundtrack to the indie film Circo. In addition to the albums – they
were originally limited edition CDs the band sold at shows and via their
website – there will be a deluxe book loaded with photos, artwork, personal
commentary from the band members, and detailed album-by-album liner notes.
Calexico’s tour albums have always stood somewhat apart from
similar releases by other artists, who frequently just throw together a batch
of home demos or offer live recordings from the current tour. Each title has
differed sonically and thematically from the rest, with (for example) 2007’s Toolbox (pictured above) consisting of straightforward
songs that founding members Joey Burns and John Convertino recorded across a
whirlwind 3-day recording session, while 2000’s Travelall was an excursion into jazz, ambient and freeform featuring
guest appearances from the likes of Jon Birdson, Rob Mazurek, Doug McCombs and
Noel Kupersmith. And of course the series’ pair of live albums, 2002’s Scraping and 2008’s Ancienne Belgique showcased the group at two key points in its live
evolution – Mariachi horns included.
Fans who have collected the tour albums have long prized
them as standing to the side of Calexico’s so-called “official
releases” from the Quarterstick and City Slang labels; call them an alternate
history of the band.This deluxe box will mark the first time any of them have
been available on vinyl. Those albums are:
98-99 Road Map (1999)
The Book and The Canal (2005)
Ancienne Belgique (Live in Brussels) (2008) – reviewed here at BLURT
Circo-A Soundtrack By Calexico (2010)
Calexico also hits the road this week, starting Aug. 10, for a short tour –
check dates here.