Katrina: Donate $100, get a call from Brian Wilson
If you donate $100 to Hurricane Katrina relief efforts, Brian Wilson (the Beach Boy) will call you on the phone. Wilson “Here’s my challenge: For anyone who sends a donation of $100 or more, I will call you personally and answer a question you may have, or just say hello. Also, Melinda and I will match the donation.” LINK TO SITE
via boing boing.
Archive for September, 2005
Friday, September 30, 2005
Katrina: Donate $100, get a call from Brian Wilson
White Stripes work with Michel Gondry again
‘Denial Twist’ clip will be surreal look at a day in their life. The White Stripes are reuniting with director Michel Gondry, and to celebrate, they’ve assembled a crew of characters that’s, well, pretty darn Gondry-esque. A cast of little people, giants, roadies, stagehands and one solitary Conan O’Brien “It’s going to be a real — how do you say it? — a mindblower.” director Michel Gondry will join the Stripes in their Gondry-helmed video for the song “The Denial Twist.” It’s the first collaboration between the band and the French auteur since 2003′s “The Hardest Button to Button”and their fourth time working together overall. “It’s going to be a real — how do you say it? — a mindblower,” Gondry said. “It is based on one day in Jack and Meg’s life. It’s re-enacting a day when they went to play on the Conan O’Brien show, in a very bizarre way. We see them playing on the stage, then they talk to Conan, and then they take their car and drive amongst giant people, and then they go home and watch their performance on TV. But the whole time, they will be distorted and stretched.” The video is based on the week in 2003 when, to celebrate the release of their album Elephant, the Stripes had a weeklong residency on Conan’s show, performing a different song each night. But though it sounds like it comes from the White Stripes’ personal memories, the idea for the video was actually all Gondry’s, and much like everything he does, it’s got some really strange roots. “I had made a statue of Conan, as a big square head, and I gave it to them and they gave it to him [while they were on the show],” Gondry laughed. “It was made of plaster and it was like something a little kid would do for their mother. And it got on TV, so I thought it would make for a funny and weird video.” And from everything Gondry said, the “Denial Twist” video is going to be plenty funny and weird. He’s building a compressed set in New York — Conan’s just wouldn’t cut it for the complex camera tricks he plans on using — and he wants to do the video all in one take. He also promises plenty of bright colors and a fair amount of post-production wizardry too. And while Gondry swears that O’Brien will definitely make a cameo in the video, it might not be as the host of his show. “We might have someone wearing his picture on their face, because we have to stretch that person, so we might have to get a [little person] and put a compressed image on their face,” Gondry said. “But who knows? All I can tell you is that Conan will be in the video.” The “Denial” video is scheduled to film in three weeks, and after that, he intends on keeping his collaboration with the band going — he’s already got ideas for videos number five and number six in his head. And sorry, Stripes fans, he says unlike the clip for “Fell in Love With a Girl,” none of them involves Lego bricks (see “Inside The White Stripes’ ‘Girl’ Video Block Party”). “Yes, people are always asking me to redo my older videos, but I won’t ever do another Lego video with the White Stripes. But I do have plenty of ideas,” he said. “I’ve done six videos with Björk, and I want to tie that record with the Stripes, then beat them again by doing another video with her.” (James Montgomery MTV)
Surviving Germs Reuniting For Shows
Seminal Los Angeles punk act the Germs will perform for the first time in nearly 25 years next month, with actor Shane West assuming the lead singer role previously filled by the late Darby Crash. As previously reported, West is portraying Crash in the biopic “What We Do Is Secret,” which is due for release next year. The Germs will be joined at the Oct. 29 show at Los Angeles’ Grand Olympic Ballroom by Suicidal Tendencies, the Dead Kennedys, Marky Ramone and Flipper. The venue was a haven for formative punk shows in the late 1970s and early 1980s. The surviving members of the Germs (guitarist Pat Smear, bassist Lorna Doom and drummer Don Bolles) have not performed together since Dec. 3, 1990. All three served as consultants on “What We Do Is Secret,” which will feature a mix of original Germs music and versions performed by the actors portraying the band members. “[West] got so close to being Darby that it actually freaked out a lot of the scenesters that came by the set,” director Rodger Grossman recently said. “He committed to doing this role in a way that I’ve never seen an actor commit to do anything. He read all the books that Darby read. He got blue contacts and prosthetic teeth permanently affixed to his, which had to be ‘chipped out’ so his teeth were more like Darby’s.” According to a statement, the Germs plan to tour the United States and Europe in the months ahead. Already confirmed is a performance during Riot Fest 2005, scheduled for Nov. 4-5 in Chicago, as well as a Nov. 25 date at the House of Blues in Anaheim, Calif.
Mike Myers to Moon Us
Geez, been hearing about this one for longer than I’ve cut my toe nails. Mike Myers has finally signed on the straight line to play drummer Keith Moon in a biopic based on “The Who” band-member, best known as the finest ‘drum kit’ destroyer in history – and also, a dude with a gift for playing with the sticks. According to Variety, the film has been in the works for about ten years – I’ve never heard anyone else mentioned for the part of Moon but Wayne Campbell himself – with Roger Daltrey and Nigel Sinclair finally getting it off the pavement. The film, being developed by Sinclair’s Spitfire Pictures, will tell of the hard-living rocker Moon – known for his wild behaviour on and off-stage – whose batteries ran out in 1978. Here’s hoping Nicolas Cage is still the firm fave to wear the vest of Pete Townsend. There’s no substitute, really, is there?
Thursday, September 29, 2005
Dirty Three:: Doris
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The Clientele:: E.M.P.T.Y
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Morcheeba:: Lighten Up
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Tenement Halls:: Plenty is never enough
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Killing Joke:: Pandemonium
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Harvey Danger:: Little By Little (ALBUM DOWNLOAD)
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eDonkey Folds to RIAA Demands, Cites Legal Costs
Leading peer-to-peer application eDonkey will soon comply with RIAA demands. In Senate testimony Wednesday morning, company CEO Sam Yagan said that his company would be “throwing in the towel” following the receipt of an RIAA cease-and-desist notice. “I’d like to make it clear to the Committee that we have replied to the RIAA’s cease-and-desist letter,” Yagan said to the US Senate Committee on the Judiciary, in a hearing dedicated to post-Grokster issues. “I have personally committed to [RIAA president Cary] Sherman, which I reiterate today, that we are in the process of complying with their request.” The eDonkey site is currently live, and specifics of the plan going forward were not revealed. The company felt that it could win a legal battle against the RIAA, but could not afford the legal costs involved. Earlier, a Reuters report pointed to an eDonkey shutdown, though that appeared to be a false alarm. Yagan has been a top figure in the P2P space, though it now appears that he could be exiting the game entirely. “I am not here as an active participant in the future of P2P, but rather as one who has thrown in his towel and with no interest in replaying past issues.” Those comments may mean that an RIAA-sanctioned, legitimate version of eDonkey may never surface, creating only a partial win for the trade organization. According to Yagan, the RIAA strategies may create a bigger problem in the long-term. “I fear that the winners in Grokster will not be the labels and the studios, but rather the offshore, underground, rogue P2P developers who will have just lost half a dozen of their biggest competitors,” Yagan warned.
Super Furry Animals: Love Kraft (Album Review)
The sound of guitarist Huw Bunford diving into a swimming pool is the first thing you hear on the Super Furry Animals’ incredibly laid-back seventh album, Love Kraft. Recorded in Spain and completed in Rio de Janeiro, Love Kraft is unhurried, smooth and easy on the ears. Opener “Zoom!” does just the opposite of its titular promise, transmitting space-junk frequencies over stoned grinner melodies. The loose and shambolic sing-along stomp of “The Horn” works in some fibrous harmonica and hammered dulcimer, but it’s more Gomez-style harmless trippy blues than Exile on Main Street-period Rolling Stones lethal indulgences. The closest the band gets to the zany inventiveness of Radiator-era Furries is “Psyclone!,” a rumbling, hilarious declaration of extinction that opens with a Woody Guthrie-worthy send-up: “Pterodactyl, brontosaurus, tyrannosaurus gather ’round…” Overly synthesized tracks like the flow-busting “Lazer Beam” and the fuzzy “Frequency” detract from the weenie-roast beach-chill vibe. Notably, Love Kraft is the first Furries album to feature the writing and singing of all band members, which means less frontman Gruff Rhys and presumably more variety. But aside from the noted exceptions, Love Kraft is a solidly unified-sounding work: No political rants or social observations, and, regrettably, no Welsh-language detours. Just the Furries kicking it in warmer climes and putting aside deeper concerns for the time being. Perhaps On Vacation would have been a more apt title.
Wednesday, September 28, 2005
Big Star:: In Space (Album Review)
There isn’t much arguing that the three studio albums Alex Chilton cut with Big Star between 1972 and 1975 represent the creative high-water mark of his career, but it doesn’t seem to be a period he looks back upon with much fondness. The man rarely plays songs from the Big Star catalog in his solo shows, and while he assembled a new version of the band in 1993 — with Chilton and original drummer Jody Stephens joined by Jonathan Auer and Ken Stringfellow of the Posies — the group has only played sporadic live dates since then (presumably when someone ponies up the right price for a gig), and it has taken 12 years for Chilton to work up the enthusiasm to make a new Big Star album. And to listen to 2005′s In Space, it’s hard to say if that’s what he really wanted to do; In Space sounds a lot more like one of Chilton’s likeably shambolic solo albums than a work of fractured but inspired pop genius in the manner of #1 Record or Radio City, with New Orleans R&B, garage rock, and even old-school funk taking as prominent a role in the mix as the Brit-informed guitar hooks of Big Star’s glory days. It’s probably no coincidence that the two most “Big Star” sounding songs on the album were contributed by Jody Stephens (the lovely “Best Chance We’ve Ever Had” and “February’s Quiet”), while Auer and Stringfellow conjure up the mood of #1 Record with their compositions, “Lady Sweet” and “Turn My Back on the Sun.” Chilton, however, seems to be on another page altogether, and the amusing irony is this not-very-Big Star-ish album sounds like a better Alex Chilton solo set than the man has made since 1987′s High Priest. His revved-up take on “Mine Exclusively” (a tune the Olympics cut in 1966) is a near-perfect garage rock rave-up, “Hung Up With Summer” is a solid early Beach Boys homage, “A Whole New Thing” and “Do You Wanna Make It” are rough and ready R&B workouts, and even the deliberately sloppy “Love Revolution” (a disco-funk homage complete with mirror balls and platform shoes) and “Makeover” find the man sounding more engaged and enthusiastic than he has on record in quite some time. In Space also finds Chilton accompanied by a band that’s worth his while for a pleasant change; Auer, Stringfellow, and Stephens are a potent rhythm section who do lovely harmonies behind Chilton’s still-exciting guitar lines, and these performances sound tighter and more emphatic than what one might expect from Chilton’s solo work. In Space is an album that should appeal to anyone who digs Alex Chilton; however, anyone expecting a Big Star album is going to be more than a bit puzzled by most of these tunes. (by: Mark Deming)
Tuesday, September 27, 2005
The Hives announce new DVD and single details
The Hives are set to return in November with a brand new DVD and single. The band will release ‘Tussles In Brussels’ – their debut DVD – on November 14 which will feature a twenty track gig filmed in the Belgian capital last year. Also included on the disc will be a documentary, directed by Kalle Haglund, charting the history of the band from their first gig in their hometown of Fagersta, all seen through the eyes of fictional investigative reporter D.W. Johnson. The film is narrated by Little Steven Van Zandt of E Street Band and The Sopranos fame. ‘Tussles In Brussels’ will boast eight promo videos as well, with two of them previously unseen – ‘A Little More For Little You’ and ‘Abra Cadaver’. The Hives release a re-recorded version of ‘A Little More For Little You’ on November 7 on 7″ and download, which will feature ‘Abra Cadaver’ and ‘No Pun Intended’ live in Brussels as B-sides.
Monday, September 26, 2005
Belle & Sebastian play ‘classic’ album in London
Belle & Sebastian have played their ‘classic’ 1996 album ‘If You’re Feeling Sinister’ in its entirety London last night (September 25). Tickets for the Scottish outfit’s performance at the Barbican, part of the ‘Don’t Look Back’ series of shows, were reportedly selling for vast sums on internet auction sites before the gig. And those who did get in were treated not only to the album, but a host of other classic tracks, including live rarity ‘Electronic Renaissance’ from their debut album ‘Tigermilk’. They also played a new song, titled ‘Another Sunny Day’.
The set was:
‘Another Sunny Day’
‘The Loneliness Of The Middle Distance Runner’
‘The Stars Of Track And Field’
‘Seeing Other People’
‘Me And The Major’
‘Like Dylan In The Movies’
‘The Fox In The Snow’
‘Get Me Away From Here, I’m Dying’
‘If You’re Feeling Sinister’
‘The Boy Done Wrong Again’
‘Judy And The Dream Of Horses’
‘Dog On Wheels’
‘The Boy With The Arab Strap’
‘The Wrong Girl’
‘I’m A Cuckoo’
‘If You Find Yourself Caught In Love’
Friday, September 23, 2005
The American Analog Set:: Set Free (Album Review)
In contrast to contemporary music world’s penchant for volatility and evolution, The American Analog Set, throughout their decade-spanning career, have changed very little. While they evaded bandwagons and poseur-dom, the Austin-based quintet had, to date, quietly churned out six full-lengths, numerous singles and EPs; given the addition of Set Free to their already impressive collection, it simply gets better.
Set Free gives 2001’s Know by Heart – critically acclaimed and widely regarded as Amanset’s masterpiece – a serious run for its money. Unlike the band’s previous effort, the rather patchy and under-whelming Promise of Love, Set Free reverts to a format of consistency; while Amanset’s subtleties reach certain depths, there is not a dud to be heard. Their qualities lie within, in their precision and abundant maturity: the simplicity in which the typical Amanset song takes root is what makes Set Free tick. To strip Set Free down is to reveal the simplicity in its unvarnished nakedness. The guitar riffs that lace standout tracks “Born on the Cusp” and “The Green Green Grass” would sound unmistakably trite were they not interwoven with a small assemblage of layers. On the contrary, Set Free is far from panoramic; Amanset’s lo-fi tendencies require that the instruments employed do not fight for space, and instead allow for the thread of the album to unravel and slowly expose its suitably flowing hooks. The American Analog Set’s reverence reaches a peak with “She’s Half,” during which a steady and unremarkable progression of chords provides a platform for Andrew Kenny’s raspy whispers. Motionlessness aside, it is moving, duly matched by the hypnotic “Sharp Briar,” which sees Sean Ripple’s vibraphone move to center stage – if a stage were ever set. Upon beholding Set Free, it is obvious that The American Analog Set are a band that have never been destined to move mountains; the band’s long-running consistency suggests their lack of interest in doing so. Set Free is bound with sincerity, exemplifying the workings of a band absolutely content to continue writing subtly accessible indie-pop songs that both relax and conjure warmth. Although fans cannot be certain of Amanset’s presence in a decade’s time, they can be confident that, if still creating together, they will remain as cerebral, wistful and charming as ever. (Reviewed by Mike Wright)
Thursday, September 22, 2005
Voodoo Music Experience Moving To Memphis
The Voodoo Music Experience, which was to be held in New Orleans Oct. 29-30, has been moved to Memphis’ Tom Lee Park in the wake of Hurricane Katrina. Nine Inch Nails is the first act confirmed for the new event, proceeds from which will benefit the New Orleans Restoration Fund. The rest of the festival lineup is still taking shape, according to organizers. “Moving a festival of this magnitude has been no easy task and we are grateful to the city of Memphis for extending their hospitality, to Trent Reznor for voicing his advocacy of NORF and Voodoo, to all the artists dedicating their time and energy to support the cause and to our incredible group of people working on this project for their dedication and support over these last few weeks,” says Voodoo founder/producer Stephen Rehage. Highlights from the show will air Nov. 5 on VH1, while the network’s broadband channel, Vspot, will offer exclusive performances. Additional Voodoo proceeds will be donated to Habitat for Humanity, Mercy Corps and other national and local organizations facilitating aid to victims of Hurricane Katrina and the restoration of New Orleans’ cultural institutions.
Wednesday, September 21, 2005
Peaches album details emerge
Peaches has been in the studio with Eagles Of Death Metal singer Jesse ‘The Devil’ Hughes. Peaches has spent some of this year working on new songs for the follow-up to 2003′s ‘Fatherfucker’ in her Berlin studio, with a view to release early in 2006. Speaking in America, Hughes said that working with the singer was just one of many projects he’s currently working on. He said : “I’ve been recording on Peaches’ album and doing a little writing. I’ve been bing-banging back and forth, living the true Hollywood nightlife dream – studios and sex and drugs and everything. It’s killer!” Eagles Of Death Metal are also due to support Foo Fighters across Europe at the end of the year. Hughes added: “I’ve never played arenas before. Oh my God, it’s still giddy for me to talk about it. I believe the only way to be successful in rock’n'roll is to be a fan first, and I’m the biggest fan of that band. “But for them to have asked us under the circumstances: we were playing a festival show in Belgium, and when I walked off stage, there was Trent Reznor and there was Dave Grohl. They had stayed for the entire show. And then [Foo Fighters] ask us to do the tour with them, and I guess the whole tour is sold out. That’s the testament to the amazement of my moustache. (Via NME)
Clap Your Hands Say Yeah Sidesteps Label Deals
When the self-titled debut from Clap Your Hands Say Yeah landed on the Billboard Top Independent Albums chart last month, the group accomplished the feat without a label or distributor. Instead, the band took its album directly to indie retailers, finding a national distributor in Junketboy, a company owned by the Coalition of Independent Music Stores. Now, the indie rock act is finding that with a well-timed tour and a wealth of Internet buzz, a record label may not be all that important. The five-piece, led by eccentric singer Alec Ounsworth, has sold 12,000 copies of its debut, according to Nielsen SoundScan. College friend and manager Nick Stern says the act has shipped more than 25,000 copies since July, fulfilling most orders itself from a Brooklyn, N.Y., apartment. The band just signed a U.S. distribution deal for the album with Warner Music Group’s Alternative Distribution Alliance, which will give it access to larger retailers. Stern, whose day job is in the publicity department of Atlantic Records, is not ruling out a record deal for the much sought-after band, but says it is not a priority. “We’re much more open to a label situation overseas than we are in the U.S.,” Stern says. “Why would we need it? The distribution we need, but I do think there’s a new way of doing things.” Before CYHSY, CIMS president Don Van Cleave used Junketboy largely to distribute independent retail exclusives to the 28 national CIMS accounts and, sometimes, retailers in other indie coalitions such as the Alliance of Independent Media Stores or Music Monitor Network, or to nonaffiliated indies. ADA president Andy Allen calls his company’s one-off deal with CYHSY highly unusual. “Other than [jam band] O.A.R., who we’ve had a long-term relationship with, we’ve never actually done a deal directly with a band,” Allen says. Tapping into the Web-savvy audience that catapulted the Arcade Fire to the top of the indie community, CYHSY began selling its album to non-New Yorkers via its Web site. When sales started to take off, Stern enlisted the help of online retailer Insound, where the act has been the top seller since June. Of course, being without a label offers some challenges. “We’re paying a little over $1 per CD, so I can’t order 5,000 CDs until I get money for the CDs I just sold,” Stern says. “Since it takes three weeks to print the CDs, there’s been a lag in getting CDs out to stores.” Allen says ADA is ready to ship to larger retailers — Amazon.com and Tower, for instance, have yet to stock the album — as soon as the company gets some discs. “My understanding is that we’ve already had orders for about 9,000 pieces, and we don’t even have stock yet,” he says. Demand is sure to increase, as CYHSY is in the midst of a North American tour with the National. “This is the first time they’ve gone somewhere beyond Philadelphia and Boston,” Stern says. “We’re trying to figure this all out day to day. As far as I’m concerned, this is the tip of the iceberg.”
Tuesday, September 20, 2005
Kayne West:: Late Registration (Album Review)
Kanye West twisted the rap game with his debut album The College Dropout. Although groomed by Jay Z and joining the Roc-A-Fella crew helped matters, a hip-hop icon was born. He exploded in a way that, in recent years, has only been matched by The Neptunes. The follow-up, Late Registration, was eagerly anticipated – and I had no fear of Kanye suffering a second album that would flatter to deceive. Ever since Diamonds From Sierra Leone, with its Shirley Bassey sample, it was clear West would at the very least equal the quality of his debut. The radio friendly track that explores the irony of a people only recently (in relative terms) emancipated from slavery fuelling the diamond trade which in itself is a slave driving industry. It’s sugar-coated “revolution”, but the remix featuring Jay Z is an excruciatingly haunting yet masterful piece of work. The movement from one extreme to another is eased by the album opening with a jovial intro before launching into the happy-go-lucky tune of Heard ‘Em Say. It is tinged with the outlandish statement “I know the government administer AIDS”. But there’s nothing to substantiate that argument, until the heartfelt Roses; “Magic Johnson got a cure for AIDS and all the broke motherfuckers passed away”. He merely asks the questions. Touch The Sky reeks of familiarity. It’s a commercial track and is not exactly overloaded with musical or lyrical merit, but laying the lyrics over Curtis Mayfield’s Move On Up takes you from the bitter to the sweet. Then forthcoming smash Gold Digger, featuring Jamie Foxx, hits you with standard pigeon bashing (refer to the male answer to TLC’s No Scrubs). But it’s a Ray Charles sample that gives the track the feel of a rejuvenated Spiritual song. Crack Music utilises the grittiness of The Game’s rapping style and unrepentant gangster persona to parody the music business with the drug world. Kanye even leaves room to name check and lay into (who else?) George Bush, but it is not much more than a fleeting reference. Lyrics aside, the beat is ridiculously thumping but without being obscenely punishing. Bring Me Down makes you stop. It’s one of those rare tracks that makes everything else seem unimportant for the little over three minutes that it lasts. Whether that’s down to Brandy showing signs that she can take Mary J Blige’s tiara as the queen of hip hop, or whether it’s down to the finalistic beat or the tangible emotion in Kanye’s voice is unclear. But it is a stunning piece of music. Donna Leace’s Today Won’t Come Again provides the basis for the chilled Hey Mama, which funnily enough is an ode to Mrs West met with the unmistakable soulful voice of John Legend in a low key but perfectly suitable performance. Late Registration doesn’t fade away into nothingness but eases you out. There’s no final blaze of glory just a soft sense of closure. It’s a cleverly and thoughtfully composed album, bereft of filler and loaded with style and substance. (- Azeem Ahmad)
Monday, September 19, 2005
The Darkness – album details revealed
The Darkness have named their new album ‘One Way Ticket To Hell… And Back’. The record, the band’s second, will be released on November 28 and is preceded by a new single ‘One Way Ticket’ two weeks earlier (November 14). The album won’t feature any music from ex-bassist Frankie Poullain, who left the band earlier this year. Instead, guitarist Dan Hawkins has helped out in the studio on bass duties. Poullain’s full-time replacement is Hawkins’ ex-guitar tech Richey Edwards. The group have worked on almost 40 songs for the LP, which were then edited down to approximately 15 which are being considered for the final release.
Friday, September 16, 2005
Sigur Rós:: Takk…(Album Review)
A strange thing happens before the two-minute mark in “Saeglopur.” All the twinkling and cooing erupts, at what might seem like eight minutes earlier than normal, into a cathartic blast of tautly constructed group noise — or, as those who prefer songs and motion over moods and atmospheres might say, “The good part comes.” “Saeglopur” is emblematic of Sigur Rós’ fourth album, released nearly three years (!) after ( ). Nothing resembles a drone, and no part of it could be described as funereal. Even so, Takk… is still very much a Sigur Rós album, due in large part to the ever-present otherworldly vocals, but also because the only real changes are the activeness of some arrangements — arrangements that deploy a familiar combination of bass, drums, piano, vocals, lots of strings, and some horns — and some of the colors that are used. Despite opening with what sounds like a happy walk through a snow bank, the album is just as suited for a sunlit spring morning as ( ) was suited for a winter trudge across a foggy moor, so in that sense, it isn’t a repeat and is more tactile than illusory, but it’s not likely to win over anyone who suddenly felt an index finger push against the back of his throat while hearing “Svefn-G-Englar” for the first time. And it’s not as if the band is suddenly writing three-minute pop songs, either. Half of the album’s tracks are longer than six minutes, with extended cresting, sudden bursts of action, and a couple particularly fragile moments that seem to be on the brink of melting away. One thing to consider when wondering whether or not this band has changed in any way: they’ve gone from providing the background music to death announcements to “Sé Lest,” a fluttering children’s lullaby that is briefly crashed by an even more gleeful oom-pah-pah brass band.
Coldplay Delivers Digital EP for Katrina Victims
Coldplay has rush-released a digital EP to benefit survivors of the Katrina disaster, a coordinated effort with Apple, Capitol Records and BMG Music Publishing. The four song compilation, called Fix You, will retail for $2.99 on iTunes, and all proceeds will go to hurricane relief funds established by the American Red Cross and the National Academy of Recording Arts & Sciences (NARAS). Meanwhile, Apple is helping to collect donations from iTunes users, and others in the space like Napster, Audio Lunchbox and XM Satellite Radio have also chipped in. On a wider scale, the music community has responded in force. A long list of superstar artists have become part of the effort, including Usher, Green Day, Dave Matthews Band, Rob Thomas, Ludacris, Alicia Keys, Diddy and Jay-Z. Those artists have either contributed directly or been part of a number of benefit performances aired by MTV, NBC, CBS, ABC, BET, and others. Now, the country is looking at a massive reconstruction effort, which will help to resurrect an American musical gem.
David Bowie Performs With Arcade Fire
Arcade Fire & David Bowie joined his favourite band of the moment, Arcade Fire on stage at a New York gig last night. The 58 year old joined the band at the end of their Central Park gig just days after performing with the band at the Fashion Rocks Concert also in New York. According to the New York Daily News, Bowie came on stage wearing a white suit and performed one of his own tunes with the band before picking up a guitar and joining in with singing on ‘Wake Up’ It is only the second time Bowie has performed since his heart attack last year…the beginnings of a comeback perhaps?
Thursday, September 15, 2005
Tom Waits sues General Motors over adverts
Tom Waits is taking General Motors to court over a series of car commercials that perfectly mimic his singing style. Airing from late winter 2004 to early 2005 in Sweden, Finland, Denmark and Norway, the suit in question names both General Motors’ Opel and the ad agency McCann Erickson in Frankfurt, Germany. Waits is known for his policy of refusing to allow his music to be licensed commercially, and, according to the suit, turned down big-money offers several times from Opel. After the defendants were informed of Waits long-standing policy against doing commercials, their agents hired a sound-alike singer to imitate Waits, according to the lawsuit. “Apparently,” Waits says in a statement, “the highest compliment our culture grants artists nowadays is to be in an ad — ideally naked and purring on the hood of a new car. I have adamantly and repeatedly refused this dubious honour. Currently accepting in my absence is my German doppelganger. While the court can’t make me active in radio, I am asking it to make me radioactive to advertisers.” In countering, General Motors (the parent company of Opel) claiming that it did not seek out Waits or intend to use his voice. The suit also charges the defendants with violating Waits’ personality rights under German law. Waits is seeking recovery of the defendants’ gains, including their profits and cites a recent German case involving misuse of the iconic Marlene Dietrich’s personality rights. Waits was also forced to issue a press release in April of this year, assuring confused fans who had mistaken the sound-alike for him that he had not done the ad or changed his policy to keep his music, voice and image out of commercials.
Wednesday, September 14, 2005
Belle and Sebastian Finish New Album
Belle & Sebastian Twee Scots Belle and Sebastian have finished work on their new album. The band have been working with Beck producer Tony Hoffer in Los Angeles on the follow up to 2003’s ‘Dear Catastrophe Waitress’. The as-yet-untitled long-player is pencilled in for release in early 2006. Soft-voiced frontman said: “The process of making the record has been amazing. “The last record had quite a few older songs on it… and we wanted to give them a proper go with big arrangements. “This record is all new songs – 18 of them – so it’s all very current.” Songs set to appear on the album are tentatively titled ‘A White Collared Boy’, ‘Act of The Apostle Part 1’, ‘Song for Sunshine’, ‘Funny Little Frog’, ‘Sukie in the Graveyard’ and ‘Another Sunny Day.’
Tuesday, September 13, 2005
Harvey Danger Giving Away Third Album
I wanna publish zines! And rage against machines! Yes, yes, most of you remember Harvey Danger only for 1997′s surprise hit “Flagpole Sitta” from the band’s debut Where Have All the Merrymakers Gone?. But in 2000, the Seattle group released the follow-up, King James Version, which in addition to being a solid album, also boasts a fantastic title. I think, like, God used it for something, too. Mr. Danger fell silent as the post-grunge boom faded, but now they’re back with their third record, Little By Little…, released today on the band’s own Phonographic Records. It was produced by fellow Seattleites John Goodmanson and Steve Fisk, who have worked with Sleater-Kinney, Low, Blonde Redhead, and a little band called Nirvana that totally ripped off Harvey Danger. Little By Little… is on the racks at select independent record stores, but it will also be distributed on the band’s website for free, via BitTorrent starting next Tuesday, September 20, and as a straight-up download on September 27. Damn, that’s generous. As a reward for buying the physical disc, however, you’ll get a bonus CD with nine extra B-sides and outtakes. The single for “Cream and Bastards Rise” will be out in November on Kill Rock Stars.
Little by Little… tracklist:
01 Wine, Women, and Song
02 Cream & Bastards Rise
03 Moral Centralia
04 Little Round Mirrors
05 Happiness Writes White
07 Cool James
08 What You Live By
09 War Buddies
10 Diminshing Returns
Harvey Danger will be celebrating the album’s release with several hometown performances, including a September 21 Hurricane Katrina benefit concert at the Showbox with Death Cab for Cutie. If you find yourself in the Emerald City, check ‘em out here:
09-18 Seattle, WA – Sonic Boom (in-store)
09-21 Seattle, WA – Showbox (Katrina benefit) *
09-24 Seattle, WA – Fremont Oktoberfest #
09-26 Seattle, WA – University of Washington HUB Lawn (students only) $
10-15 Seattle, WA – Crocodile Café
10-22 Seattle, WA – Vera Project &
* with Death Cab for Cutie, Viva Voce
# with the Cops, the Pale Pacific, the Divorce
$ with the Presidents of the United States of America, Smoosh
& with Holy Ghost Revival, Racetrack
Monday, September 12, 2005
Antony & The Johnsons:: I am a bird now (Album Review)
There was a memorable description of Antony — the one-named wonder trading under the name Antony & The Johnsons — as having “the voice of a choirboy in the body of a rugby prop.” A little private-school for my tastes, but the descriptive does its job of showing the contrast between the big, bulky frame of the New York songwriter and the astonishing, octave-straddling voice that, incongruously, comes caroling from him. What the descriptive doesn’t do, though, is explore the sense of utter sadness that comes in this spiritual/physical juxtaposition; doesn’t extend to how such manifests, completely and utterly, in Antony’s music, and, especially, in his second album, I Am a Bird Now. Antony’s voice is a songbird’s warble, but it’s a caged bird, held prisoner behind the bars of the body, living in a human form that seems like a prison. It’s easy to talk of Antony’s tunes as being transgender torch songs — played with much dexterity and drama on a grand piano — but it’s another to look them in the eye, to actually read on the compact disc the child’s scrawl that says: “Dear Dr., I do not want to be a boy. I want to be a girl.” It’s easy to be seduced by his striking singing, but it’s hard to keep open ears when he sings of debasing the body that’s keeping him prisoner; “Fistful of Love” is a violent coda to his former record’s “Cripple and the Starfish,” an ode to “getting the shit kicked out of you,” with lyrics lustily recollecting feeling “your fist” and “the whip.” All the while, whilst singing this, he’s dreaming of growing up to be a beautiful woman, of escaping his cage, of taking wing, of soaring. It’s a lyrical line that Antony never strays from across an entirely thematic set. Even when he tries to head away from such, things have a way of turning full circle. “You Are My Sister” was initially written for his actual sister, but by the time he set out recording it as a duet with Boy George, Antony’s ode had seemed to take on entirely different meaning, this full circle reflecting a personal/artistic full circle, Boy having been the first outward representation and reflection back of himself for Antony as a boy, Boy who inspired the boy Antony to dream of being a singer. George is one of two heroes herein: Lou Reed turns up on “Fistful of Love,” too, and two of Antony’s peers, Rufus Wainwright and Devendra Banhart, are on hand to lend their own crooning to the disc. But, as whole, the record is hardly notable for its special guests; the beauty of Antony’s singing, the ferociousness of his delivery, the profundity of his songs, and the unflinching nature make the disc truly transcend such. Transcendence being an apt image for a record whose whole whole is dedicated to transformation and metamorphosis — its title, “I Am a Bird Now,” is a statement that can only come on conclusion, the destination point towards which all the record’s hopes and dreams must build; its closing track, “Bird Girl,” speaks of being born in such a moment. That moment marks the end of the album’s journey, a culmination when the songbird finally gets to fly, free as a bird, free at last. (by Anthony Carew)
COLDCUT RECRUIT SPECIAL GUESTS FOR NEW ALBUM
COLDCUT have teamed up with the likes of JON SPENCER, SAUL WILLIAMS and M’PHO for their new album. The dance pioneers plan to release ‘Sound Mirrors’ in January next year, and have roped in a few friends for their first release since 1999’s remix collection ‘Let Us Replay!’. Ahead of the album comes new single ‘Everything Is Under Control’ on November 14, which features guest vocalists Spencer and Mike Ladd. Remixes come from Trevor Jackson’s Underdog, Solid Groove, DJ Kentaro and The Quemist.
Friday, September 9, 2005
George Bush Doesn’t Care About Black People (The Song)
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The Misfits:: Earth AD
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Dropkick Murphys – Sing Loud Sing Proud
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Bad Manners:: Fatty’s Back in Town
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The Misfits:: Walk among us
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Various Artists – Tribute to Robert Moog
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Hard-Fi Nearly win UK Mercury Prize
Hard-Fi must be reeling today after it was revealed that they only missed out on winning the prestigious Mercury Music Prize by just one vote!!! The weird New York based band Antony & The Johnsons were named winners at the ceremony on Tuesday leaving British based bands like Kaiser Chiefs and Bloc Party stunned. However, Staines crew Hard-Fi were nearly victorious, a reliable ‘source’ told the Daily Star… “Hard-Fi lost by one vote…It was a fight between Antony, Hard-Fi and Kaisers, with M.I.A and Maximo Park also in the running for a bit.” Despite losing out, Hard-Fi were not swayed from their mission to drink £20,000 worth of booze…and managed to get totally hammered. Frontman Richard Archer said of the experience and result: “It’s totally alien for us to be at something like the Mercury’s. “We’d have frittered the money away and given some to our producer. “He made our album for love; it was never about anything else.” Hard-Fi’s new single ‘Living For The Weekend’ is out on September 19.
ARCADE FIRE PLAN NEW ALBUM
ARCADE FIRE are to follow their appearances at the CARLING WEEKEND: READING AND LEEDS FESTIVALS by getting to work on their new album. Despite playing relatively few shows in the UK since the release of ‘Funeral’ earlier this year, the Canadian band say they will not be back until they have recorded the follow-up. Bassist Tim Kingsbury said: “We want to start making a new record. We’ve got a lot of writing to do too. We’ve been touring these songs for a couple of years (‘Funeral’ came out in the US in 2004) so we’re ready to move on.” He added: “Hopefully it will be out within a year but it’s hard to say.” Organist Richard Parry added: “I have no idea how it will sound. I’m sure it will be different, but still have our sound. It’s the same group of people. It’s gonna be the Arcade Fire. And we have our own studio space now so there’s no time constraints. We spend as much time as we want and then see what happens.” (Via NME)
Thursday, September 8, 2005
TV ON THE RADIO write song for victims of Hurricane Katrina
From Tv on the Radio
I hope this finds you well. TV On The Radio has recorded a song expressing their thoughts and feelings regarding Hurricane Katrina. The track entitled “Dry Drunk Emperor” is available as a free MP3, along
with the lyrics, on our site here:
Their statement regarding the track is the following:
“we ( tvotr ) were back in the studio thinking and
feeling again and made this song for all our
everybody… in the absence of a true leader we must
not forget that we are still together…. hearts are
sick … minds must change … it is our hope that
this song inspires, comforts, fosters courage,and
reminds us… this darkness cannot last if we work
together. let us help each other… heal each other
…. look after one another … the human heart is our
new capitol…. this song is for you….
it is free. pass it on.
TO THOSE AFFECTED BY HURRICANE KATRINA : NEW YORK
CITY’S HEART IS WITH YOU… STAY STRONG !
WE LOVE YOU . -tvotr”
R.L. Burnside Dead at 78
North Mississippi guitarist R.L. Burnside died last Thursday in a Memphis, TN hospital of heart failure, according to Fat Possum Records owner Matthew Johnson. The unfortunate news comes a year after Burnside’s heart attack and subsequent bypass surgery, which he never fully recovered from. He was 78-years-old. Burnside remained musically prolific toward the end of his life, with many thanks to Fat Possum. His last album was 2004′s A Bothered Mind and he also appeared in Mandy Stein’s 2004 Fat Possum documentary, You See Me Laughin’. His raw Delta blues will not be forgotten anytime soon.
CBGB Served With Eviction Notice
If it wasn’t obvious to Hilly Kristal last week that his landlord was serious about wanting to cut its ties with CBGB, it is now. Wednesday afternoon — one week after his lease with the nonprofit homeless services organization the Bowery Residents’ Committee expired — Kristal was served with an eviction notice to vacate the building where he established the club more than three decades ago. Muzzy Rosenblatt, the BRC’s executive director, revealed last week that his organization intends to find a new tenant for the space which has always housed CBGB, considered the birthplace of the American punk movement. Kristal and the Save CBGB Coalition responded to the eviction notice in a statement issued late last night: “There is no valid reason why CBGB should leave our present historic location. All we want is the same thing [New York Governor George Pataki, New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg] and 43 City Council members want — that is to sit down with the BRC and negotiate in good faith a new lease that is fair to all parties.”Seven days after CBGB’s lease ran out, Kristal not only refuses to vacate the premises, he continues to book acts. The Adolescents and the Circle Jerks will take the CBGB stage for two shows this weekend, Dinosaur Jr.’s J Mascis plays Sunday night and Helmet are scheduled to perform on September 28. The 76-year-old club owner has vowed to fight the BRC’s eviction attempts; during a free concert last week in New York’s Washington Square Park, Kristal told the hundreds who’d turned out to support the ongoing effort to rescue the punk haven from closure that he’d “cut the locks” if CBGB were ever shut (see “Public Enemy, Blondie Rally For Naught: CBGB Lease Expires”). Just hours before being served with the notice, Kristal said he was to meet with the Save CBGB collective Wednesday night to discuss the next move in the drive to keep the club alive and in its hometown. Kristal said that he’s not interested in trying to preserve CBGB for a few more months — that would be delaying the inevitable. Instead, he’s thinking long term, and wants to focus his efforts accordingly. Kristal believes the next step is to work towards resuscitating exhausted lease-renewal negotiations with the BRC or explore alternate spaces that could house the future of CBGB. In the bid to secure a new lease for the club, Kristal and the Save CBGB Coalition made a proposal to the BRC offering to accept a significant rent increase and provide a substantially larger security deposit. Additionally, Kristal secured two separate third-party guarantors for future rent payments, agreed to contribute $97,500 — the disputed rent arrears that a New York judge ruled Kristal didn’t owe the BRC, plus interest — to the BRC upon receiving a new lease, and offered to raise up to $100,000 in additional funds for the nonprofit through annual concert events. Kristal has also requested a sit-down meeting with Mayor Bloomberg, he said yesterday. Last month, Bloomberg expressed interest in working with both sides on an equitable resolution, calling the venue “a great New York City institution” and “part of our culture.” — Chris Harris
Wednesday, September 7, 2005
Rocket from the Crypt calls it quits
Veteran rockers Rocket from the Crypt, who have slowed down their pace considerably in recent years, will play their farewell show on Halloween in their home base of San Diego. The show, open to fans ages 21 and up, will take place at the Westin Horton Plaza’s Grand Ballroom. Ticket information is available on the band’s website. “After 16 years of scars and ear damage all in the name of spreading goodwill and the Rock N Roll doctrine, we will take the stage for the last time on our favorite day of the year,” reads a statement posted at the band’s website. “We know that it is very difficult for those around the world to be with us for this celebration, but we invite all that have been a part of this awesome ride to come out one more time and give it up for the band.” Rocket from the Crypt formed in San Diego in the early ’90s, and the band developed a loyal grassroots following thanks to its reputation for raucous live performances. The group’s most recent album release is 2002′s “Live from Camp X-Ray.. Earlier this year Speedo’s (aka John Reese) other band “HOT SNAKES” Announced that they were throwing in the towel as well..
Tuesday, September 6, 2005
The Coral:: The Invisible Invasion (Album Review)
Invoking both arcane British naval folklore that’s infinitely less interesting than the literary allusions made by The Decemberists or The Fiery Furnaces and a predilection toward ’60s pop stylings that falls somewhere on the Austin Powers side of “reverential,” The Coral’s third full-length album, The Invisible Invasion, is a pleasant enough album that ultimately does nothing to distinguish itself from the efforts of countless other bands. References to “conspiracy in the corridors” on “Cripples Crown” and the parallel between surrealism and modern politics on “Arabian Sand,” which was inspired by a Salvadore Dali painting and is the only indisputably great song on the album, inscribe The Invisible Invasion with enough of a paranoid streak to pass for thematic coherence, but, like on Coldplay’s X&Y, coherence doesn’t automatically mean depth. Which might be a more readily forgivable offense if The Coral, but for the flat-out awful vocals from frontman James Skelly, weren’t so aggressively anonymous a band, suggesting that The Invisible Invasion could have been recorded by just about anyone. They sound like Interpol, but without the dire sense of self-importance. Like a less TRL-polished version of The Killers. Like The Libertines, without the hoyay or the heroin. Like The Strokes, minus the independent wealth. Like Franz Ferdinand without a good rhythm section, which is to say like Bloc Party. Like Bloc Party without clearly articulated political views. Like The Bravery, but without a ridiculous feud with members of another sound-alike band. Like The Hives, but not so heavy on the treble. And so on indefinitely, even before incorporating the most obvious stylistic influences like Echo & The Bunnymen. All of which means that The Invisible Invasion isn’t necessarily a bad record, it’s just nearly critic-proof, providing all of the evidence for whether or not any given listener will like it entirely by its many points of direct comparison. (by: Jonathan Keefe)
Kingblind Update: Iggy and the Stooges
My god.. Let me tell you first.. I had just about the best Monday I have ever had. I spend last night ON STAGE with The Stooges AND GOT SCOTT ASHTON’S Drumsticks!! I still can’t believe what a great weekend this was.. Oh.. And Friday started with The NY Dolls. Not too bad at all.. Well.. The bar has REALLY been raised now. What a great time. Oh yeah.. This weekend was part of the Bumbershoot music and arts festival in Seattle. A really great event.. Seattle is lucky to have a festival this great..
Monday, September 5, 2005
HAPPY LABOR DAY
Hope everyone is having a good labor day weekend.. Kingblind saw the NY Dolls on Friday and we are going to see Iggy and the Stooges tonight! Sweet… It’s been a very good weekend for music to say the least..
Friday, September 2, 2005
QOTSA’s Homme Collapses In Germany
Already battling an injured knee, Queens Of The Stone Age frontman Josh Homme collapsed after a Monday show in Hamburg, forcing the cancellation of the next evening’s concert in Stuttgart. According to QOTSA’s Web site, Homme “was diagnosed with exhaustion and ordered to bed by a local doctor.” The statement adds that Homme “has been performing every night on this tour despite his physical condition (due to a knee operation less than a week before he left for tour), and it finally caught up with him. He is resting now and in a stable condition.” The remaining dates on the group’s European tour are scheduled to resume tomorrow (Sept. 3) at Spain’s Azkena Rock Festival. Homme is also expected to be healthy enough to begin QOTSA’s North American tour with Nine Inch Nails, which begins Sept. 16 in San Diego. It’s been a rough few months for the California-based rock act, which have found Homme battling the aforementioned knee injury as well as a lung infection that required the cancellation of a February European tour. But QOTSA fans do have a lot to look forward to. An Aug. 23 show at London’s Brixton Academy was taped for an as-yet-untitled CD/DVD due Nov. 22 via Interscope, and the group has also recorded a cover of Joe Walsh’s “In the City” for the soundtrack to the upcoming video game “The Warriors.” In addition, Homme has remixed two songs from Death From Above 1979, which will join QOTSA and NIN on the road this fall. (via billboard)