Tonight I’m thrilled to be hosting in-studio performances by two influential artists: At 9 PM we’ll be broadcasting a session with Robin Guthrie (formerly of Cocteau Twins), followed by another from Brendan Perry (formerly of Dead Can Dance) at 11 PM. And since both those men got their start recording for the iconic independent label 4AD, I’ve decided to dedicate my entire show, from 9 PM til 1 AM to the legacy of 4AD Records, a little showcase I’m calling “4AD 4VR.” Trust me, it seems more clever when you imagine what Vaughan Oliver and the 23 Envelope crew might’ve created for a logo.
Ivo Watts-Russell launched the 4AD imprint in 1979, and it’s still going strong to this day. I’ll be spinning selections from the label’s infancy (Rema-Rema, Bauhaus), through 30 years of classics by This Mortal Coil (pictured above), Throwing Muses and Pixies, right up to recent releases from the National and Deerhunter… even music from the as-yet-unreleased Zomby full-length. Some of my personal favorites you might hear include Colourbox, Frazier Chorus, Insides, and Scott Walker. And I’ll mix things up and throw in a few cover versions, original recordings, and cuts that sample 4AD, too. Is there something from the realms of 4AD you’d like to suggest? E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org, hit me up on Twitter, or leave a comment below.
Adding to the excitement, the 4AD crew have sent us some very special goodies, and we’ll be giving them away during the evening to a few lucky callers. These include the Japanese edition of tUnE-yArDs‘ latest album, W H O K I L L (with exclusive bonus cuts), a copy of the now out-of-print 2010 Record Store Day 12-inch Fragments from a Work in Progress (featuring rarities from Blonde Redhead, Gang Gang Dance, and more), and an exclusive Japanese promotional compilation where contemporary 4AD artists pick fifteen of their favorite selections from the label’s vast back catalog. You think you’re the only one who still cares about X-Mal Deutschland and Clan of Xymox? Ariel Pink begs to differ.
And while KEXP is in the middle of our Summer Drive, I won’t be breaking into this special show with protracted breaks. I’m going to trust that the excitement of “4AD 4VR” will be sufficient to inspire you to give a gift of support to the only station that brings you this type of one-of-a-kind programming: Listener-powered KEXP.
Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to go make sure my vintage Wolfgang Press t-shirt is clean… and still fits.
DJ El Toro hosts the variety mix show on Wednesday nights from 9 PM to 1 AM on KEXP 90.3 FM Seattle and kexp.org. His weekly rant, Weird At My School, appears infrequently on the KEXP Blog. Please follow DJ El Toro (aka Kurt B. Reighley) on Twitter and/or Tumblr!