Exclusive Stream: Chain and the Gang, In Cool Blood

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Chain and the Gang should require very little introduction, but for the ignorant among you, here you go: Ian Svenonius, the DC denizen famous from Nation of Ulysses, the Make Up, Weird War, his manifesto The Psychic Soviet, and just general outspoken headiness, slides on in to the famous Dub Narcotic Studios in Olympia, Washington, to record this record with his team of oh-so-cool revolutionaries. Joining him for this record are Katie Alice Greer on vocals; Brett Lyman (of M'Lady's Records, a favorite 'round these parts) playing the frets; and Fiona Campbell of Vivian Girls and Coasting (and also an employee at M'Lady's) on the skins; and the majesterial Chris Sutton on the seductive bass; others chipped in for organ and assorted shaker duties.

As a group, they veer out of Chain's previously ultra-political content and instead slide into the school cafeteria in their socks, wearing sunglasses in the spotty light of the disco ball. The record was recorded in mono, giving it a spacious, original feeling; the bass line leads every track through a den of inequity, into the shadow of rock 'n' roll greats of yore, and finally to the sunlight of the beatnik fingersnappers. Highlights include the two-parter “I'm Not Interested (In Being Interested)”, which really exemplifies that bass line thing; the seduction of the film noir storyline in “Heavy Breathing”; and the most romantic down-tempo “Surprise Party” ever described in song.

The record comes out June 26, aka NEXT WEEK, on K, and is available for pre-order now. This stream will only be available until midnight on June 25, so listen your heart out and then grab the vinyl from the source.