This double LP is an expanded edition of the 2000 CD of the same name. That disc collected Califone's first two EPs (on Perishable and Road Cone), plus two new songs. For this vinyl reissue Jealous Butcher Records has located four more songs – unreleased outtakes from the final Red Red Meat recording sessions – to complete the package. It's all you need when it comes to the genesis of this well-regarded Chicago-based group.
Califone started as the solo project of singer/ guitarist Tim Rutili in the late 1990s, after the dissolution of his band Red Red Meat. Soon enough, Red Red Meat members Ben Massarella and Tim Hurley joined the group, who recorded with RRM's Brian Deck as well as at their own space and with Warren Defever in Livonia, MI.
"On the first two Califone EPs, we were definitely trying to allow some deep change and possibility into what we were doing, and the door was always wide open to accidental music and automatic writing," Rutili explains. "We built a lot of this music on accidents and chance occurrences. Some of the songs are really good; some of it sounds like an expedition that got lost in the woods. I was still playing with toy drum machines, cheap or borrowed synths and a cassette 4-track, trying to make songs out of all these insane sounds."