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Strange Mutations Vol. 2 7" box set ft. Cosmonauts, Teenage Burritos, Fine Steps, and Lenz

Just as we've finished shipping the Strange Mutations Vol. 1 7" box set ft. Eat Skull, Beaters, Audacity/Big Eyes, Stalins of Sound, and Far Corners (limited copies still available here), we're happy to announce Vol. 2, ft. new 7"s by Cosmonauts, Fine Steps, Teenage Burritos and Lenz.  Order the limited copies at our online store or at Bandcamp, where you can also just order a direct download.  Have a listen to some tracks, a look at the new video for "All Day Long" by Fine Steps, and read all the info we've gotten together regarding why I decided to try this shit out.

After many years of playing music, booking shows, and running Volar Records, I’ve had the great fortune to meet plenty of great bands. Over those years, I’ve tried to figure out what most ties together the bands on the label... Volar has released a slew of 7"s and LPs, debuts and otherwise, including plenty of international records: synth, punk, lo-fi, psych, and everything in-between. Though many of the bands have joined me in my own warped vision, they all share in them an authenticity that can sometimes be hard to find in everyday life. There’s a community experience they all share, and to more broadly expore that particular vision is the purpose of Strange Mutations, a 7” series that brings our friends together in unique combinations. Given the origins of our collective mutations and the diversity of bands, ultimately the purpose of the series is to help new bands and stalwarts move forward on a basis of like-minded community.

VOLAR33 - Cosmonauts - "Wear Your Hair Like a Weapon" b/w "Sweet Talk" 7"

Limited color copies available via mailorder only here or as part of the SM2 set here.


I’ve known the Cosmonauts dudes for a few years now.  I didn’t make it out to SXSW this year, but in the two years previous, I hosted Volar showcase alongside Burger Records and some other folks.  Two years ago, between the Volar shows and Burger’s other shows, I ended up seeing Cosmonauts seven times in five days, and I realized by the end that I never got sick of them and actually looked forward to seeing them again.  We talked then about working together at some point, but the next year for Volar was incredibly busy as it was.  Cut to a year later, 2012, and yet again, I saw the band play another seven times in five days, and realized that they’d only gotten better since the year before.  We talked again about working together, and it took a while to come together, but here we are with the “Wear Your Hair Like a Weapon”/”Sweet Talk” double A-side, and I couldn’t be happier.

VOLAR34 - Teenage Burritos - "Danya" b/w "Kamikaze" debut 7".  Artwork by Dusty Dirtweed.
Limited color vinyl available via mailorder here, and as part of the SM2 set here.

I spent the better part of four years or so playing with my best friends in their band Christmas Island, and it was through those shows and tours that I met a lot of the folks that I would eventually work with via Volar.  The band has been inactive for over a year, but in that time, CI’s drummer Lucy Wehrly started this new band, Teenage Burritos, with her friend Kirsten Gundel playing bass and singing, and some rotating members, before sticking with Brian from CI and guitar and Kevin Gist from Plateaus, also on guitar.   They released a great s/t cassette on Burger last year, and the “Danya”/”Kamikaze” 7” marks their vinyl debut, with our friend Andreas Lagerstrom of the great Captured Tracks act Holograms out of Sweden contributing backing vox and synth to the b-side.

VOLAR35 - Lenz - "Frozen Touch" b/w "Airplane Firetruck" 7"
Limited color vinyl available via mailorder only here, or as part of the SM2 set here.

Late last year, Andy Human of Lenz, who produced Uzi Rash’s I Was 30 in 2012 LP for Volar, hit me up about booking Lenz a show here in town.  I was happy to do so, and was immediately sold on the band.  We talked about working together, and after releases on Burger Records, 1-2-3-4 Go! and Tic Tac Totally, we’re proud to present to you the “Frozen Touch”/”Airplane Firetruck” 7”.

VOLAR36 - Fine Steps - "All Day Long"/"Cold Hand" b/w "Stereo 7"
 Limited color copies available via mailorder only here, or as part of the SM2 set here. 

Another guy I’ve known for a while, Fine Steps main songwriter Julian Elorduy has put his time in with great bands as a drummer since he was in high school, namely the amazing Mayyors, who I was fortunate to play some shows with while they were around.  Eventually he picked up the guitar and began writing songs, with his friends from the great Ganglians joining in to fill out the live version of the band while they were all living in Sacramento.  Now that he’s packed his bags and moved to San Francisco, he’s been joined by our good buddy Matt Roberts of the Mantles, and after talking for a while about working together, he sent the three great tracks that make up this “All Day Long” 7” EP.






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