In addition to their bi-monthly singles series, Merge Records is celebrating its 25th anniversary by reissuing classic albums from its back catalog each month throughout 2014. “Some of these selections have been long out of print, have great companion bonus material, or were requested by nerds in the Merge office who just wanted to own them on vinyl,” the label explains. On January 28th, the campaign kicks off with the reissue of Lambchop’s fifth album, 2000’s Nixon. (The band also contributed to the aforementioned singles series.)
Lauded as a critical and commercial breakthrough for the Nashville outfit, Nixon is considered “the peak of the 14-person Lambchop,” said frontman Kurt Wagner in a press release, with subsequent records featuring fewer and fewer collaborators. The album is also the last Lambchop effort to be recorded almost entirely with analog methods, something that Wagner “marvels at now, given how complex these songs were to assemble.”
Merge describes the album as the genesis for all of the band’s post-2000’s experimentation, adding, “The album glides easily from one unexpected grace note to the next, peppering in funk, R&B, gospel, country, vintage folk—and integrating them all, not presenting them discretely. Over the years, as Lambchop has continued to experiment, making more albums that are just as conceptual and well executed, Nixon has grown in stature as a sort of origin point.”
The album will be available in 180-gram vinyl and double-CD formats. It’s accompanied by a bonus disc containing White Sessions 1998: How I Met Cat Power. “This was a rare solo performance recorded at Radio France of (with the exception of one) as yet unrecorded Lambchop songs with cassette tape loop accompaniment for a show they had called the White Sessions,” Wagner said of the extra material. “It’s called How I Met Cat Power, which actually is true; we were doing back-to-back promo sessions that day.”
Pre-orders for Nixon are available now through Merge’s online store. Below, check out the album track “You Masculine You”.