(photograph by Shawn Brackbill)
We tend to start new signings entries to the Matablog with lines like “Matador Records is pleased to announce….”, but could we possibly be more redundant? Of COURSE we’re pleased to announce blah fucking blah, are we gonna say “Matador Records reluctantly admits….” or “we’re obliged to tell you…”?
So with that in mind, we’re REALLY pleased to announce — perhaps more than ever before in label history — an addition to the label roster we currently consider to be one of the more important figures in American music circa 2009. Philadelphia guitarist/vocalist Kurt Vile first came to our attention (and possibly yours as well) with the release of the 2008 CD ‘Constant Hitmaker’ on the Gulcher imprint ( a label whose paw prints extend to dusty genius recordings by the Gizmos and MX80-Sound and contemporary stuff from Home Blitz and Magik Markers). What the homemade ‘Hitmaker’ (recently reissued on vinyl by Woodsist) lacked in fidelity it more than made for in scope —– to dub the album “psych pop” barely scratches the surface of a work that’s as impossibly catchy as it is wildly experimental.
Subsequent exposure to Kurt’s live shows in a variety of settings, both on his own and with crack ensemble The Violators, made it abundantly clear that we’d either have to sign this guy or find someone else who sounded exactly like him. Since the latter task proved impossible, here we are. Having signed a worldwide, multi-album pact with Matador, Kurt Vile’s first full-length for the label, ‘Childish Prodigy’ will be released on LP/CD and digital formats in Autumn 2009. Watch this space for more news & music to follow.