Category: Audio

HUM planning vinyl reissue of You'd Prefer An Astronaut and Electra 2000

2020 was a nice year for HUM, and it looks like 2021 has a few good things in store as well from the crew. They released their outstanding new record, Inlettheir first record since 1998, to critical acclaim. Now, the band plans to reissue some of their previous records, You'd Prefer An Astronaut and Electra 2000.

The announcement came today on their Facebook page, which you can read below. Though there is no release date for these reissues, they are in the works, says guitarist Tim Lash. The band reissued Downward is Heavenward a couple of years ago.

Hi all,
First off, the band sincerely appreciates all of the generous support and kind words we've received after releasing Inlet.  We're not the best at responding, but it means a lot.  So thanks again, from all of us!
Over the last few months, we've successfully navigated through some licensing stuff allowing us to re-release updated versions of Electra 2000, and You'd Prefer An Astronaut on vinyl.  Our plan involves re-mastering and cutting higher quality pressings of these two records.  Our hope is to do CD's as well if possible.  We'll post another update once we iron out all of the details on release dates, label, etc...  Since we've seen some inflated prices on the secondary market for our older records, we wanted to let people know as soon as possible.  If folks don't mind waiting a little longer, we'll be able to produce a higher quality pressing that we have control over, and are proud of.  We'll also have more copies of our Downward is Heavenward re-issue available in the near future as well. 
We hope you all are healthy and well, and 2021 turns out to be a little easier for everyone.  Take care.

Top image from HUM's Facebook page.


Sandman Slimm, formerly Truth AKA Trouble, releases new EP beautiful chaos

Dontiel Allison has a new name for his rap project: Sandman Slimm. You might recognize Allison, as he's been in the scene for quite some time releasing music as Truth AKA Trouble. Plus, there's his collaboration with Chase Baby as Trouble Chasin' to refer to as well if you want to check out his previous work.

Sandman Slimm's new EP, beautiful chaos, is a 16 minute release that you can stream now on your platform of choice. I've embedded it here via Bandcamp, but head over to the LinkTree page to steram where you wanna stream.

Sandman Slimm's album art for beautiful chaos, a predominantly pink background and an illustration in the center.
Album art from Sandman Slimm's Bandcamp.

Top image by Sandman Slimm.


Listen to this D&D podcast made by two C-U kids

Gabrielle and Genevieve Thomas, two kids in Champaign-Urbana, have put together a Dungeons & Dragons podcast called Centaur Party. The kids (and their dad) play the game in the Mythic Odysseys of Theros Campaign setting. From the description:

Join centaurs, June and Lama, as they explore the Wild Woods and resist the encroaching colonization of the City of Stratos.

I admittedly do not really understand that particular combination of words, but if you are in the know, then you know. Gabby and Evie are exceptional hosts, and with the help of their co-host/producer dad Grant, they take you through the game with humor and wit and a joie de vivre we all need.

Four photos in a quadrant feature twin girls making podcast. In some of the quadrants they are looking at the camera, in others they are not. They are seated at a big table with microphones and papers and dungeons and dragons style dice. Photo courtesy of Grant Thomas. Photo courtesy of Grant Thomas.

Episodes are about 30 minutes long, and there are currently nine available, with more to come.

Give the pod a listen, and as they say in podlandia, subscribe and leave a review.

Top image screenshot from the Centaur Party Apple podcasts page.


Mermaid Heaven releases new track “The Thorn”

Indie synthpop outfit Mermaid Heaven released a new song, "The Thorn", via their Bandcamp page over the weekend. You can stream it now below, as well as check out their post on Instagram which teases a new video is coming soon.

Read our interview with Elizabeth Allen about the project from last July, though certainly there looks to be much more on the horizon now that 18 months have passed since our chat with her. 


the thorn out on bandcamp video 2 come #hashtag #music #imesseduptgefirstpostsmh

A post shared by @ mermaid.heaven on

Top image by Anna Longworth.


Warm Darn's new album Take the Pain is out now

The experimental pop/ambient project Warm Darn has released a new record, Take the Pain, which you can stream below. Released just this past Friday, this is Warm Darn's follow-up (though there was an EP in between) to last year's full-length record, Word Search (which you can read more about here). Head over to Bandcamp to learn more about the album and what went into its creation.

Top image is Warm Darn's album art.

Check out Big Wild House Party, a new C-U label for house, hip-hop, and bass music

Big Wild House Party is a new record label, created by Matt Harsh, Kevin Miller (aka DJ Belly), Zack Ware, and Adam Jackson. They have their focus set on house, hip-hop, and bass music through their new label, which features a few releases already (as of September 24th, at least). You can check out a few of the releases below via YouTube, but be sure to head over and see what they are doing on Facebook, Instagram, and elsewhere (which you can find on their Facebook page).

Interested in reading more about another new label in C-U? Read up on Failed Poem Records while you're at it. It's nice to see a few of these pop up during such an uncertain time.

Top image from Big Wild House Party's Facebook page.


Listen to Voldrega the Black Mage's new EP, Hold This L

Voldrega the Black Mage is a rapper in C-U, and he just released his new EP at the end of August, Hold This L, which you can stream below. This is a collaborative EP, produced by The Letter L Beats and mixed and mastered by Humbly G. Black Mage placed second in the recent Champaign Cypher Series tournament, falling to Chase Baby in the Championship bout. Chase Baby recently released an EP of his own, produced by Curb Service.

Check out Hold This L on your platform of choice.

Album art for Hold this L, featuring a gold edging border, and a person wearing a purple wizard outfit, holding a doll in front of the camera. PHoto provide by Artist.
Album art provided by artist.

Hold This L:

  1. Earthbound
  2. Main (Player Two) ft. $oJo DaPoet
  3. Black Magic ft. KD
  4. Blue Moon ft Indigo Pipez
  5. Pyramids

Top image by Robert K Recordings.


Chase Baby releasing Curb Service-produced The Dissociation EP this Friday

Rapper Chase Baby is dropping a new project, The Dissociation EP, this Friday, August 28th. The four track EP was produced entirely by Curb Service (who just released an album not too long ago). You can pre-save the EP here on a few streaming services, but be on the lookout for this on Friday.

Album art featuring vertically-written text THE DISSOCIATION EP in yellow. There's a purpose and red blurred figure on top of a black background.Album art provided by Chase Baby.

The Dissociation EP:

  1. Murder
  2. Lifelines (feat. AMS)
  3. Sleep Paralysis
  4. Turn the Page

Top image from Chase Baby's Facebook page.


Listen to this PSA about mask-wearing from Champaign native Tom Bodett

Tom Bodett, whose voice you know from the Motel 6 commercials and perhaps Wait Wait Don't Tell Me on NPR, was gracious enough to lend his recognizable voice to a public service annoucement for the Champaign-Urbana Public Health District.

The Champaign-Urbana Public Health District (CUPHD) is excited to announce the release of a public service announcement (PSA) featuring Champaign-native, Tom Bodett. Tom Bodett graciously agreed to record a 30-second PSA to encourage Champaign County residents to wear a face covering to help prevent the spread of COVID-19.

“We were excited that Tom Bodett was willing to make a PSA for us to use in Champaign County. He has such a recognizable voice from his commercial work, and I am personally a fan of his from his appearances on “Wait, Wait...Don’t Tell Me” on National Public Radio,” said Julie Pryde, CUPHD Administrator.

CUPHD would also like to thank Chris Powers, retired journalist from Rantoul, for his efforts to make this possible.

Take a listen here.

Photo from


Curb Service releasing Ready Set Ghost this Friday, first new album in seven years

Curb Service is set to release its first new record in a good portion of a decade this Friday, Ready Set Ghost. This is the follow up to 2013's Romeo Jive, and you can tune in for Larry Gates' livestreaming event of the new record this Friday, July 10th at 8 p.m. to hear the new album. He'll be donating all the first week proceeds from streaming/pay sites to Buy Black Chambana's Black-Owned Business Fund.

Here's some more information about the release from Gates:

Ready Set Ghost is the first Curb Service release in 7 years. When the world went into lockdown, I went into songwriter/producer mode. I put a fair amount of my time into creating something I'm proud of, now it's time for everyone else to enjoy it. With the exception of a few backing vocals and percussion bits, everything else was written, performed, recorded and mixed by yours truly at The Little Red Recovery Room in Urbana, IL. Mastering by Anthony Gravino at The Drake (Chicago, IL).

I will be livestreaming a listening party this Friday, July 10th at 8pm central on my Instagram and at 9pm central the album should go live on most platforms (Spotify, iTunes, Tidal, Pandora, SoundCloud, Bandcamp, etc).

Here's the album art, and pre-save the record on Spotify here. Read my interview with Gates from a few months ago about his InstaGates series while you're at it.

Image by Larry E. Gates II

Top image by Larry E. Gates II


Youth Climate Justice Forum launches new podcast

Champaign-Urbana's Youth Climate Justice Forum is a youth-led group of climate activists from schools around Champaign-Urbana working to collectively create change by empowering and inspiring their peers and their community, particularly through raising awareness about the harmful effects of climate change and steps we can all take towards a solution. During the COVID-19 pandemic, they've sought to answer how we can ensure that climate activism is strengthened, and not undermined, by these uncertain times. To that effect, they've begun a podcast series in collaboration with radio station WRFU in which they interview local legislative leaders and activists to learn their opinions on the coronavirus, climate change, and what we as community members can do. 

Listen to their first three episodes, with interviewees including Urbana Sustainability and Resilience Officer Scott Tess, Illinois State Representative Carol Ammons, and Prairie Rivers Network water resources engineer Andrew Rehn on their website, and tune in to WRFU 104.5 at 5 p.m. this Friday to hear their fourth episode, featuring Traci Barkley, Director of Sola Gratia Farm.

Top image from CUYCJF's website.


HUM release Inlet, the band's first new album since 1998

HUM have announced the release of their new highly-anticipated record, Inlet. You can stream the album right now on their Bandcamp page.

Updates about the new record have been few and far between, which comes as no surprise, but it was September 2018 when they announced the reissue of Downward is Heavenward while providing an update about the record's progress. Inlet is the band's first album since Downward was released in 1998. You'd Prefer An Astronuat turned 25 this year.

Here's a statement from the band:

Hum is happy to announce the release of our new album, Inlet. Vinyl (180g double LP), CD, and shirt bundles are available for immediate pre-order via, with all pre-orders including a free digital download.

The record is also available for consumption at and will ripple out to all digital platforms within the week.

Vinyl manufacturing has been delayed a bit due to Covid. We are hoping we can ship late Summer. We’ll keep you posted. The band is extremely thankful for the kindness we have received over the years, and we hope everybody is healthy and well!


IMAGE: View of an arch in a canyon, all in purple. Photo design by Ohio Girl, and Hum.
Design by Ohio Girl, and HUM.