Yellow Ostrich - The Mistress: Deluxe Edition [Limited Yellow with Black Splatter Color Vinyl Record]
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Yellow Ostrich - The Mistress: Deluxe Edition [Limited Yellow with Black Splatter Color Vinyl Record]

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Barsuk presents Yellow Ostrich's The Mistress (Deluxe Edition), a 10th Anniversary reissue of the beloved debut, long out of print, and available now on colored vinyl LP. An accompanying download code includes the original 10-track album, plus 18 bonus tracks including the 2011 Barsuk bonus material, four previously unreleased b-sides, an early alternate version of the hit "WHALE," plus 10 covers (recorded in 2010) of songs that inspired founder Alex Schaaf during the writing and recording of The Mistress: songs by Beach House, Jon Brion, Dirty Projectors, The National, Joanna Newsom, The Replacements, The Rural Alberta Advantage, The Tallest Man on Earth, Sharon Van Etten, and Yeasayer.

The focal point of Yellow Ostrich's magnificent debut is Schaaf's tender, pleading voice. It's reedy and childlike, and on the mistress it gets looped and layered, stretched, manipulated; it's stacked up several high and, most often, it's used as an instrument, fleshing out the empty spaces in his bare, searching songs. These songs exist within that push-and-pull, the allure of blind fantasy chased by the bitter sting of reality. Nowhere is this more apparent than in "Mary," a song that begins with optimism and encouragement but crests on a sudden, startling note of despair: "Mary, you are doing drugs – don't you think we know?" Schaaf sings, crestfallen. The confrontation is followed by a crushing silence, before Schaaf's voice – all six harmonizing iterations of it – returns, a soothing cascade of sound. He sings only a single open syllable, but the meaning is clear: Schaaf's intention is not to judge – it's to comfort.

  1. I Think U Are Great
  2. WHALE
  3. Hate Me Soon
  4. Hold On
  5. Libraries
  6. Hahahaohhoho
  7. I'll Run
  8. Campaign
  9. Mary
  10. Slow Paddle