In the new issue of The Wire, I contributed an extended review of the new record by "conflicted retromaniac" Luke Haines - New York in the '70s, an oddly blank regeneration of proto-punk idioms from the CBGBs / Max's Kansas City / Mercer Arts Center era.
A fun record to think about, although I had much more fun listening to its immediate predecessor, Rock and Roll Animals - on which Haines turned rock history into an anthropomorphic children's story. For the line - for the thought - "a badger called Nick Lowe" alone, Haines deserves a knighthood. Or at least a CBE.
New York in the '70s is a teensy bit like one of those Top of the Pops compilation albums you used to get where a session band pallidly covered choice items from the top forty (except that Haines is offering pastiches and forgeries, rather than covers, and none of his models -- Suicide, Lou Reed, New York Dolls, Richard Hell, Jim Carroll etc - ever came close to charting).
Still it connects faintly with this theme issue of Wire which explores "game-changing compliations, anthologies, a-chronologies and lists".
A meaty issue, with lots of mindfood and entertainment strewn across its "22 page survey of paradigm-busting compilations, anthologies, mail order lists, mixtapes and other collections" involving most of the magazine's sharpest writers. (Particularly enjoyed Joe Stannard's remembrance of the Moving Shadow / Suburban Base 1993 collaborative compilation The Joint).
Other commitments prevented me from contributing but if I had, I think I'd probably have written about the "introduction to the New Music" samplers and compilations that classical music labels put out in the Sixties and, tapering off signficantly, the early Seventies. The major labels like Columbia, with series like "Music of Our Time", curated by David Behrman, and issued via its budget imprint Odyssey; Deutsches Gramophon, with those attractive color-varied but uniform-styled comps; Nonesuch, obviously, but also Folkways had an odd penchant for electronic music.
But of particular interest to me are specialist labels like Turnabout, about which it's very hard to find any information these days. (Like, who were they, beyond being a subdivision of Vox, and why did they decide to focus on this segment of the market?).
postscript: triggered by Bollops comment below, even more avantclassical samplers, from the RCA Victrola New Music series