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Loren Connors
Blues : The ‘Dark Paintings’ of Mark Rothko

Family Vineyard

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$39.00 SGD
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$39.00 SGD


A TAV Curator's Pick.

"Blues: The ‘Dark Paintings’ of Mark Rothko is one of Loren Connors’ most cherished and sought after albums. Originally released in a handmade edition of 200 or so copies on Connors’ own St. Joan imprint in January 1990 under the name Guitar Roberts -- Blues has been unavailable in any form until now.

At time of its release, Connors was still an inscrutable guitarist whose matchless and alien rendering of the blues was just gaining recognition despite more than a dozen solo and collaborative releases since 1978. Connors’ classic, song-based In Pittsburgh had only been available for three months when Blues welcomed the new decade with its reformation of the blues as minimalist lines and tone; a compound of influences spanning Louisiana guitarist Robert Pete Williams to painter Mark Rothko.

"Moving with the slow, stately weirdom we expect of Connors' late '80s sound, the music is all shards, all pokes in the eye, as though Rothko's gray scale had exploded, sending shrapnelized paint rocketing through your brain," music historian Byron Coley writes in the liner notes of this reissue. "Just as Connors' notes ricochet hauntedly through its recesses."

For this reissue, engineer Taylor Deupree restored the audio to Connors’ specifications of how these seven instrumentals were intended to sound. Cover art is an untitled 1969 Rothko work -- a painting that influenced the album. The original LP jacket is replicated as a glossy inner sleeve. New liner notes by Coley chart Connors' development and the influence Rothko had on him as a guitarist." - Family Vineyard

“For the last four decades, Loren Connors' guitar miniatures have crept from mysterious and twilit corners, places where bits of blues, jazz, rock, and ambient abstraction formed messy assemblages. Thin little riffs stopped mid-phrase; chords splintered, as if Connors had simply forgotten he was playing them. Background noise cycled through the recording. At first blush, Connors' music can sound casual and even errant, the practice reels of someone learning to play.

But stay with it, and the internal logic of Connors' work becomes evident. Rather than mimic the blues of his forebears and heroes, he splits their style open and reorders the elements. In doing so, he can weep with his guitar, moan, exclaim and even stare (almost silently) into the middle distance. To that end, the newly resurrected Blues: The "Dark Paintings" of Mark Rothko is one of the more revelatory sets of Connors' career, one that finds him vocalizing through six electrified strings and adds another emotional sphere to his repertoire.” – Pitchfork

  • Pressed on pristine 150-gram vinyl by Quality Record Pressing in an 800 edition; includes download coupon.
  • LP cover image by Mark Rothko Untitled, 1969


Item description:          


Loren Connors


Blues : The ‘Dark Paintings’ of Mark Rothko


Family Vineyard


Vinyl, LP, Album, Limited Edition, Reissue



Release Date:





Avantgarde, Guitars, Minimal

Catalog No: