A drum kit sized to fit your fingertips, Sphero’s Specdrums 2 Rings are designed to detect colors and play an assigned musical note for each. Simply wear it with the screen facing down and tap everyday objects to make a beat. Whether using the device’s preset library of instrumental sets or recording your own samples, you can make songs during a commute, at your desk or even on your own clothing. Each box comes with two rings, instructions on how to pair them with Specdrums MIX app, and a multi-colored playing pad.
Legendary DJ/producer/composer Jeff Mills (aka The Wizard) is commemorating the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 landing by releasing a conceptual album inspired by the moon. Available as a double-LP (or on CD), the record, called Moon — The Area of Influence, will be made up of Mills’ nuanced, cinematic and Detroit-rooted techno. In his words, “This album and the imagination that helped to produce it should be considered as a proposition with open-endedness and no foreseeable conclusion. It is a chemistry of facts and feelings based on then, now and forever.” Set for release 19 July, it’s available for pre-order now.
Mother Earth’s Plantasia, originally released in 1976 by beloved composer/songwriter and electronic music pioneer Mort Garson, is a wildly sought-after record—having only been available in very limited numbers at LA’s Mother Earth store (with a purchase of a house plant) and at Sears. The album was composed on a Moog synthesizer with plants as the intended audience. Now, Sacred Bones Records is reissuing the cult album—with the option of a limited green and white “Spider Plant” vinyl. Each record comes with a reprint of the original booklet and with new liner notes.
The next generation of Ultimate Ears’ Wonderboom is the Wonderboom 2: while still portable, Bluetooth-capable, long-lasting and loud, this new iteration has some unbeatable features. New to this iteration is stereo-pairing with another Wonderboom 2, some 13 hours of playback, and a new fabric exterior. We especially enjoy its “outdoor mode,” which equalizes the speaker’s output and ultimately improves its ability to cut through noise (like chatter, cars or other nearby speakers) and is activated with a button on the speaker’s bottom panel. Available for pre-order now, the Wonderboom 2 is available in four colorways and is water- and dust-proof.
Written by respected English music journalist Jon Savage, This searing light, the sun and everything else: Joy Division: The Oral History is essential reading for music fans. Detailing the pioneering band’s existence (from 1976 to 1980), Savage draws from interviews with surviving band members—Peter Hook, Stephen Morris and Bernard Sumner—and contemporaries including their manager Rob Gretton, Factory Records co-founder Tony Wilson, art designer Peter Saville and others. This comprehensive and chronological account of the wildly influential post-punk band offers insights and stories never heard before.
Equipped with Google’s Voice Assistant and Active Noise-Cancelling tech, Master & Dynamic’s new MW65 headphones are available now—and look, feel and sound fantastic. The MW65 melds this ANC technology with their established line without compromising the sound quality they’ve come to be known for. In spite of all the features, they’re easy to set up and manage. Additionally, they come with a 3.5mm cord in case the battery dies and a pouch to stow accessories.
Solange’s 19-track When I Get Home is available on clear vinyl, for those who enjoy the ritual and sound of real-life records. With tracks featuring Sampha, Panda Bear, Tyler the Creator, The-Dream, Abra, Dev Hynes and others, it’s a lush album that waxes and wanes effortlessly between ballads, interludes and beyond.
The first collaboration between Actual Source and Ghostly, this new limited edition crewneck is printed on the front (combining both logos) and embroidered on the reverse. Both brands are celebrating this year, with music and art company Ghostly’s 20th anniversary and publisher, brand and retailer Actual Source hitting five years as an independent publisher. The sweater is made in the USA from 98% cotton and is pre-washed to avoid shrinking, and is available from small to XL.
Made in collaboration with Kvadrat and Raf Simons, B&O’s new headphone case is made from Ria 0281 fabric—new worsted-spun wool with just a little nylon and viscose. The organic-looking pattern reflects the sustainable nature of the material, and the fabric-covered inner helps to protect your headphones. With a simple zip closure, this case is a super-practical but sophisticated accessory.
Recorded at the famed Electric Lady Studios (built by Jimi Hendrix and designed by architect and acoustician John Storyk), Electric Lady Sessions includes live versions of several LCD Soundsystem tracks, as well as a few covers. With tracks like Heaven 17’s “We Don’t Need This Fascist Groove Thang” and The Human League’s “Seconds,” the record offers extra insight into the band’s new wave and synthpop influences. An essential for LCD fans, this two-vinyl set comes with a DFA lightning bolt sticker.
Playing Johannes Brahms’ “Wiegenlied” (better known as Brahms’ Lullaby or “The Cradle Song”) this strange and sweet octopus has been made to help babies get to sleep. Produced with 100% cotton chambray, it’s easily wiped clean. The 11.8-inch tall creature is also soft—in case a young one gets a hold of it.
The legendary Marshall Stanmore II speaker gets a 21st-century addition: Amazon Alexa-controlled operations. This incredibly versatile speaker, from the brand’s classic roster, is renowned for crisp audio—thanks to its two 15 Watt class D amplifiers—and its heritage-inspired look (fit with an “EST. 1962” etched into its front). Listeners can now ask Alexa to change the song, adjust the volume or even provide information for upcoming shows from the track’s maker—all from across the room.
Working with Prince during the late 1970s and early ’80s, photographer Allen Beaulieu documented a wildly significant time for the multi-disciplined artist—from emerging talent to household name. Prince: Before the Rain is filled with behind-the-scenes, candid, live performance and never-seen-before images—all offering insight on the remarkable artist, and the significant era in which he became an internationally beloved superstar.
Native Instruments’ Maschine Mikro is a compact, travel-friendly beat-making station. You can use it to create melodies, “jot down” ideas, or build beats from the base up—all for an incredibly reasonable price. The Mikro can stand on its own as a production tool but it’s also compatible as a plug-in for a number of other audio production programs (like Ableton Live, Logic Pro or FL Studio).
Recommended for ages 14+, this kit, designed by Little Bits and KORG, lets young music-lovers build their own modular synth. Featuring a delay, filter, micro-sequencer, oscillator, synth speaker and much more, the builder has limitless options as far as sound and execution go. Learning how to build a synth is only the first step; playing it is second—and both are equally educational and enjoyable.
40 years after the release of The Sex Pistols’ 1977 album Never Mind the Bollocks, Here’s the Sex Pistols, comes a book that documents that wild year. With photographs, gig posters and album art (much of which has never been published before), there are also plenty of stories about secret shows, media events, recording sessions—and, of course, fights.