News from 4/2020

COMMERCE : WED, APR 1, 2020 at 12:00 AM

Sub Pop’s High Def at Low Stakes Sale: All Digital Albums Are 32% off Through April 15!

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Starting today, April 1, 2020 (aka Sub Pop’s 32nd anniversary), and running for 2 weeks, through April 15, 2020, we are having what we have only very recently begun calling the Sub Pop High Def at Low Stakes Sale!

What this means:

- All digital albums are currently 32% off!

- This sale starts April 1st and ends April 15th! Which, if we’re doing the math right, is two full weeks!

- 32% because it is our 32nd anniversary!

- This applies to all digital formats we sell: FLAC, ALAC and MP3 are, as ever, all the exact same price at the Sub Pop Mega Mart!

- All Sub Pop AND Hardly Art High Def digital albums are 32% off right g-d now!

- That’s 1% off for every year Sub Pop is old!

- This includes pre-orders!

- This excludes bundles!

Celebrate in place with us for our 32nd birthday!

Contradict current music industry sales trends!
(Be an Individual, Call Your Own Shots, March to the Tune of a Path Less Taken, and alllllll that jazz)!

Savor all of the relatively unsung advantages of buying digital albums!
(Like: We don’t have to ship them to you! And, you don’t have to wait for them to arrive in the mail and then disinfect them! They don’t warp! They do not require special shelving, nor do they get dusty! They’re super easy to deal with when you move! You get the picture, we think!)

And above all, please shop, buy at a significant discount, and then download and enjoy rich, delicious, lossless (or mp3 - your call) DIGITAL ALBUMS!!


NEWS : FRI, APR 3, 2020 at 8:40 AM

Presenting, The 2020 Sub Pop Loser Scholarship Winners!

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In this time of Covid-19, enduring quarantine and the world seeming to be turned upside down, it’s a welcome reprieve to see something impressive and inspirational (rather than depressing…). And so! We present to you: the Losers who won! This year’s Sub Pop Loser Scholarship winners are a profoundly impressive bunch. Our scholarship committee spent hours poring over the hundreds of applications and through a very difficult decision-making process, we’ve come up with three ultra-inspirational scholarship winners. Congratulations and heartfelt thanks to you all - you have brightened up some dark days.

First up is Jane of Eugene, Oregon. Jane got hit by an egg, and we thought it was beautiful. Her essay showed our committee that she was in touch with the values that Sub Pop stands for. Jane has taken a love for music and turned it into a lightsaber, slashing through injustices in her community. Over the past four years Jane has found time to raise money for families of school shooting victims, start multiple bands that have performed at social justice functions, fought off sexual harassment and bullying in her school by taking the fight to the school board. Through the Planned Parenthood action panel Jane fought to bring safety to those in her school who faced a harmful environment. Because of Jane’s activism, her house was egged and her stuff was destroyed by anonymous high school doofuses. And yet, she persisted! She stands up for what she believes in, she speaks articulately with a powerful voice and uses her musical talents and stellar singing ability to fight off those normies who would seek to oppress her as well as others. Jane rules!

Next up we found Ada, from the great state of Washington. Ada’s story is filled with rejection leading to dejection and social isolation. However, through it all, Ada always found a way to maintain self-love and positive energy to outshine those bullies who tear people down. Ada is an exhilarating musician, guitarist, singer, and songwriter who is able to transform the emotional baggage of the teenage world into high-energy, positive, moshpit-inducing music with the incredible band New Moon. And, as if that weren’t enough, Ada has spent many hours volunteering with youth and supporting the all-ages scene at the Redmond Firehouse. What. A. Loser!

Finally, we were completely won over by Sofia of Seattle. As a teenager, Sofia has found more ways to contribute to the Seattle music scene than most adults. Some of Sofia’s greatest hits include sound engineering for The Vera Project and Easy Street Records, DJing for KEXP’s youth radio program 90.TEEN, as well as participating in the MoPOP Youth Advisory Board. Sofia has found a way not only to navigate some traditionally male-dominated spaces, but to shift the culture of the Seattle scene to be somewhat more inclusive and intersectional. We know Sofia has big things to come!

Thanks for playing to all who applied, you are all an inspiration! And we can’t wait to see what’s ahead for all of you.



NEWS : MON, APR 6, 2020 at 12:00 PM

Aaron Stauffer: Actual Nurse

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We rec’d the note below from longstanding friend of the label, Aaron Stauffer and thought it would be good to share…

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To my sisters and brothers in Nursing,

As we will be/are the tip of the spear in the current crisis facing the world
I have great pride to be amongst your ranks
You never fail to inspire me with your bravery
Together with partner first-responders and other health care workers
We will stand firm and face the coming storm
Doing much more than we have before with significantly less
With love and courage
Happy to care for the people
Whom we hope to god are staying home and washing their hands

Yours in Health,
Aaron Stauffer RN, Emergency Department
(Sub Pop alum from Seaweed and Gardener and current member of Ghost Work)

And a playlist to accompany…


NEWS : WED, APR 8, 2020 at 6:58 AM

Preservation Hall Jazz Band’s “Keep Your Head Up [Feat. Pell]” is available now to stream and watch

Preservation Hall Jazz Band’s “Keep Your Head Up,” is a spirited tune and a standout from their acclaimed A Tuba To Cuba documentary and soundtrack. The song was released in the spring of last year, with Cuban singer Eme Alfonso on the album version and in the official video. Later that summer, an update with rapper Pell was released for Penguin’s Original Tracks series and was performed on the streets of the artists’ hometown of New Orleans. 
 
Last month as a Stay At Home order was declared in Louisiana, Preservation Hall Jazz Band’s Ben Jaffe began performing ‘Keep Your Head Up” every evening from his New Orleans home (and filming it on Instagram Live) encouraging his fellow citizens to participate by opening windows, hanging on their porches, in their backyards, and decks to make musical sounds and rhythms with pots, pans, instruments, and their voices. A daily, uplifting, 5-minute break from everything, bringing people together by connecting families with their neighbors, community through sound, and through music.
 
Jaffe says of Pell’s contribution to “Keep Your Head Up,” “We couldn’t be more grateful to have a dear friend as talented and kind as Pell lend his spirit and voice to our song.”
 
Pell offers this, “This song is more important than ever in reminding us to enjoy every day, despite how much uncertainty and adversity this global tragedy has brought upon us. Stay safe, inside, and keep your head up high. Love.”


[Photo credit: Chris Swainston]
 
Late last week, the Preservation Hall Foundation launched the Legacy Emergency Relief Fund. The fund provides grants to the Hall’s Musical Collective to help with vital living expenses resulting from loss of work due to the Coronavirus. 
 
Jaffe, who is also Preservation Hall Foundation’s creative director, had this to say, “The doors at Preservation Hall are closed for the foreseeable future and our 60-member Musical Collective is facing great uncertainty. We’re focusing all of our attention towards caring for our musicians in helping them weather the crisis.”
 
The Musical Collective performs over 1,500 concerts at Preservation Hall, serves over 30,000 students through numerous education and community engagement activities and performs globally at major music festivals, theatres and performing arts centers throughout the year.

None of what Preservation Hall does is possible without its Musical Collective and community. To learn more or to donate, please visit the Preservation Hall Foundation website: https://www.preshallfoundation.org/legacy-program-emergency-fund.




NEWS : THU, APR 9, 2020 at 7:00 AM

Watch Washed Out’s crowd-sourced video for new single “Too Late”

Washed Out’s Ernest Greene was one of many artists who found themselves in a state of limbo last month after the widespread cancellations of live performances and unexpected travel restrictions. In Greene’s case, the first effect was canceling a long-planned music video shoot in Italy, where he was set to collaborate with an international team of filmmakers.

In response, Greene took the opportunity to engage his fans, launching a collaborative creative project for the new Washed Out song “Too Late.” The result is a beautiful music video touching every corner of the globe that couldn’t have existed a month ago.


Photo by Blair Greene

Greene writes:

I’d spent months planning a music video for a new song called “Too Late.” My inspiration was a Mediterranean sunset I saw late last year, and the plan was to shoot on the coast of Italy with a team of UK and European collaborators. As we got closer to the shoot date, word about the severity and the speed of the virus started becoming daily news, and it became clear it wasn’t going to happen the way we’d planned. We tried to move the shoot several times (to Malta, Croatia, Spain, and eventually the UK), and one after another, countries shut their borders. Seeing Italy hit so hard was especially difficult to see.

I put up an IG post asking for fans to help me come up with the raw footage I had in mind - those first few days, as I was going through photos of my trips and tours, the memories of traveling and experiences I’d had took on a new significance. I wanted the video to capture those same moments for other people in their lives, and give us all an excuse to remember what it’ll look like again when it passes.

I went in thinking if I got 100 clips, I’d have enough to make the video I wanted to make. 30 minutes in, I had the 100 clips, and a few days in, I had over 1,200 clips - from London, Bali, Okinawa, Ann Arbor, Dubrovnik and a few hundred other places around the world. It was pretty amazing for me to see the vids and pics flood in like they did.

I was blown away by the response, and I’m excited to share the project with everyone now. For me, it’s turned out to be a much needed reminder of how connected we can all be when we’ve never been more physically distanced from each other. I hope everyone that contributed and everyone that watches the video gets the joy from it I do.

I don’t know what the immediate future holds for Washed Out… I have a lot of new music in various states, and other projects I was looking forward to working on this summer. I don’t know when I’ll be able to tour again, or when any of the other new music will come out, but I’m staying optimistic about both….  

- Ernest Greene


Washed Out’s “Too Late” is available now at all DSPs worldwide through Sub Pop. The track was produced and recorded by Ernest Greene and mixed by Ben H. Allen in Atlanta, Georgia.






NEWS : MON, APR 13, 2020 at 6:57 AM

Hear Y La Bamba’s and L.O.T.I.O.N. Multinational Corporation’s Sub Pop Singles Club Vol. 5 tracks, available now at All DSPs

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Photo Credit: \Y La Bamba - Emily Krouse  |  L.O.T.I.O.N. MC - Martin Sorrondeguy

Y La Bamba’s and L.O.T.I.O.N. Multinational Corporation’s contributions to the Sub Pop Singles Club Vol. 5 are available now for the first time at all DSPs, like so:

Y La Bamba’s ”Mariposa De Coalcolman” b/w “La Ultima Vez

L.O.T.I.O.N. Multinational Corporation’s “Alphabrain” b/w “War Games


Y La Bamba has been many things, but at the heart of it is singer-songwriter Luz Elena Mendoza’s inquisitive sense of self. They have been living in Mexico for the last year in between tours and wrote a body of work that has a lot to do with ancestral trauma. Spending time In Michoacan, Mexico as an adult has continued to be a strong guide. The writing that has come from the complexities of life and Latin American societies has brought a deeper sense of cultural identity. After releasing the 7-song EP Entre Los Dos, it was only natural to follow the flow of the next manifestation. “Mariposa De Coalcomán” is a song about the mothers in their bloodline, the many lineages that exist in spirit, in dreams, in the heart of the ancestral body. Developing new ways to communicate with the softness and anger of the past. “La Última Vez,” written and recorded in Oaxaca, Mexico, is a love song of boundaries and self-respect. It is clear that Mendoza has found a place to rest all thought and listen to the sound of feeling. Watch the official video for “La Última Vez” directed by Emily Krouse and shot in Los Angeles here (see also Rolling Stone April 13th news story).


Birthed from the intensely creative and genre-bending New York City DIY scene, L.O.T.I.O.N. Multinational Corporation has quickly become one of the most exciting bands of the underground, gaining notoriety for their unique brand of industrial cyberpunk and intense live shows. Masterminded by visual artist Alexander Heir, the group has gained recognition internationally for their fiercely political lyricism and striking visual aesthetic. Blending noisy electronics with live instrumentation, the band draws inspiration from the harsh minimal electronic music of Detroit, 90s rave culture, and the thrashing riffs of hardcore punk. Following their 2013 demo tape, L.O.T.I.O.N. Multinational Corporation released their debut LP, Digital Control And Man’s Obsolescence in 2015 via Toxic State Records. Their last LP World Wide W.E.B (2019) delved even further into the techno-dystopian universe, fusing elements of D-Beat and EBM. Watch L.O.T.I.O.N. Multinational Corporation’s official video for “Alphabrain” directed by Colin Devin Moore here.


Both singles will also be released as limited-edition 7”s only available to Sub Pop Singles Club Vol. 5 subscribers. The series will also include singles by Father John Misty, Ohmme, Julia Jacklin, Clarke and the Himselfs, Guerilla Toss, Sumac, TEKE::TEKE,  Redd Kross, and more. Subscribe here.