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Archive for May, 2013

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Dirty Beaches Drifters/Love Is the Devil (Album Review)

This release isn’t a double album in the traditional, White Album or The Wall sense of the term. Rather, it’s comprised of two entirely separate LPs that share a jacket for purely practical purposes. Of the two, Drifters is more likely to illicit comparisons to Dirty Beaches’ 2010 breakthrough, Badlands, as its taut bass lines and drum loops provide a hypnotically repetitive foundation for reverb-swathed croons and squalling guitar muck. It’s a largely enjoyable voyage into the seedy, neon-lit underbelly of big-city nightlife, but the real treat comes when songwriter Alex Zhang Hungtai turns the focus inward for the largely instrumental Love Is the Devil. Sombre and almost narcotically low key, these cinematic mood pieces range from droning synth dirges to hypnotic guitar sketches. This minimal format emphasizes Hungtai’s talent for setting a skin-crawling mood.


Daft Punk’s Random Access Memories claimed the number one spot on the digital charts in 97 countries in it’s first week of release, moving over a million units worldwide, including 339,000 in the US. It was also the band’s first number one album in the US, as well as in Germany, Australia & Japan. Here’s the press release we received.

Internationally, the album hit the #1 spot on digital charts in 97 countries, dominated UK charts to become the fastest selling album of 2013 and had the biggest first week album sales in France since 2007, where the album is already triple platinum. Daft Punk also earned their first official #1 album in multiple countries, including the US, Germany, Australia & Japan. The album is also officially #1 in France, Canada, Switzerland, Spain, Austria, Mexico, Italy, Belgium, Spain and others. In the US, Random Access Memories sold 339,000 copies, with the vinyl version becoming the biggest selling vinyl album in SoundScan’s LP Vinyl chart history. Random Access Memories is the first album in Billboard’s Electronic/Dance Song chart history to have every song debut simultaneously.

Incredible public demand for the album not only led to unprecedented album sales and radio charting, but also to a steady stream of critical acclaim from media worldwide including features in The Wall Street Journal, Billboard, The New York Times, NME, Rolling Stone, Time, The New Yorker and many more.

“Get Lucky,” the first single from Random Access Memories immediately shot to the top of charts all over the world- selling 2.5 million digital tracks worldwide to date. It is the biggest selling single of 2013 in the UK, and the song is # 1 on national airplay charts across the globe. In the US, “Get Lucky” has garnered airplay across 7 different formats of radio.

Platinum helmets for everyone!

Unknown Mortal Orchestra’s Video for “From the Sun” Sees a Man Become an Art Exhibit

Unknown Mortal Orchestra have had a great run of videos for the singles from their latest album, II, featuring McLovin’ and masturbating puppets. Their latest, for “From the Sun”, sees a man made into an interactive art exhibit, subject to the sexy/disgusting whims of the visiting public. The clip was directed by Rick Alverson, a frequent Jagjaguwar collaborator. Watch below, and read our Director’s Cut feature with Alverson on his video for Sharon Van Etten’s “Magic Chords.

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Queens of the Stone Age – Like Clockwork full concert at The Wiltern

Like Clockwork full concert as broadcast by NPR radio on May 23, 2013


The band’s sixth album, out June 4 on Matador Records, …Like Clockwork features guest performances by Dave Grohl (one of three drummers onboard), Elton John, Trent Reznor, Scissor Sisters’ Jake Shears, Mark Lanegan and more. But QOTSA’s streamlined its lineup for this First Listen Live performance at The Wiltern in Los Angeles on May 23. QOTSA performed …Like Clockwork in its entirety (except “Fairweather Friends” nd Simmessa.), plus a generous assortment of older material, including “No One Knows”, “Feel good hit of the summer” and “A Song For The Dead.”

Set List

“Keep Your Eyes Peeled” 1:40
“You Think I Ain’t Worth a Dollar, But I Feel Like A Millionaire” 6:14
“Sick, Sick, Sick” 8:50
“First It Giveth” 12:32
“No One Knows” 17:14
“My God Is the Sun” 23:00
“I Sat by the Ocean” 27:10
“The Vampyre of Time and Memory” 31:00
“I Never Came” 35:30
“Kalopsia” 41:21
“If I Had a Tail” 46:20
“Turnin’ on the Screw” 51:07
“Burn the Witch” 57:39
“Make It Wit Chu” 1:02:26
“Smooth Sailing” 1:07:17
“Little Sister” 1:12:24
“I Think I Lost My Headache” 1:16:46
“Go With the Flow” 1:24:04
“I Appear Missing” 1:28:27
“…Like Clockwork” 1:39:08
“Feel Good Hit Of The Summer” 1:45:17
“A Song For The Dead” 1:49:51


Awesome. We suggest watching the whole tribute, but we’ve set the video to play when the giant pit broke out, as soon as “Raining Blood” began. (via Uproxx)

and here is Slayer playing it live

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Listen: Earl Sweatshirt: “Guild” [ft. Mac Miller]

Earl Sweatshirt and Mac Miller hop on the pitched-down vocal train on their new collaborative track, “Guild”, which is up now via Fader. The song’s been played live this year and will reportedly appear on Earl’s upcoming debut album Doris. Still no word yet on when we’ll see that release.


Trevor Bolder, the bassist in David Bowie’s Spiders From Mars and Uriah Heep has lost his battle with cancer. He was 62. Bolder joined Bowie’s backing band in 1971 along with Mick Ronson drummer Woody Woodmansey. He contributed his skills to albums such as Hunky Dory, The Rise And Fall Of Ziggy Stardust And The Spiders From Mars, Aladdin Sane and Pin Ups. He later joined Uriah Heep in 1976. Via “Classic Rock Magazine“:

He replaced John Wetton in Heep in 1976 and made his recording debut with them on 1977′s Firefly. He also played on Innocent Victim, Fallen Angel and Conquest, before joining Wishbone Ash. In 1983 he returned to Mick Box’s outfit and played on Equator two years later. He’d appeared on every album since, including their most recent outing, 2011′s Into The Wild.

He announced his hiatus from touring after his health worsened.

Earlier this year he announced what was hoped to be a temporary absence as a result of surgery. He later told Classic Rock: “I had pancreas cancer so I had to have that removed. Not the entire pancreas; but still, it was bad news. They’ve cut out the bad bit. I’ve had a bit of chemo, got to have that, which I’m doing now, in case there’s anything hanging about. Once that’s done, I should be back to doing what I do for a living.” The band had said he was aiming to be back in action in time for Heep’s appearance at the Download Festival.

The following statement was posted on Uriah Heep’s website:

It is with great sadness that Uriah Heep announce the passing of our friend the amazing Trevor Bolder, who has passed away after his long fight with cancer. Trevor was an all time great, one of the outstanding musicians of his generation, and one of the finest and most influential bass players that Britain ever produced.

His long time membership of Uriah Heep brought the band’s music, and Trevor’s virtuosity and enthusiasm, to hundreds of thousands of fans across the world. He joined the band in 1976 and, barring one short break, was a fixture until his ill health forced him to take a step back early this year. Prior to joining Heep he was a founder and ever-present member of David Bowie’s legendary Spiders From Mars band, performing on all of their key albums and at countless shows. He also performed with Wishbone Ash, Cybernauts and The Rats.

Mick Box said, “Trevor was a ‘World Class’ bass player, singer & songwriter, and more importantly a World Class friend. He will be sadly missed by family, friends and rock fans all over the world. We are all numb to the core”.

Bolder shredding:

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Daft Punk, ‘Random Access Memories’ (Album Review)

At just over 45 minutes, 2005’s “Human After All” was Daft Punk’s shortest album. It’s also the only one not to have gone gold. Perhaps in response, the 75-minute “Random Access Memories” is the French electronic act’s longest yet. There’s definitely an epic heft to it, aided by a deep, varied bench of guest talent, from Pharrell Williams (on the rubbery snap-funk of “Get Lucky,” burning up pop radio as you read this) and the Strokes’ Julian Casablancas, to disco kingpins Nile Rodgers and Giorgio Moroder, to Muppets songsmith and ’70s curio Paul Williams, whose soft croak imparts a frail sincerity to “Touch.” Me Decade touches abound — Steely Dan electric piano here, Motown strings there, smooth bedroom pop several places — but they’re given a substantial update. In “Giorgio by Moroder,” the famed producer narrates his tale to a beat, chanking guitar and staccato keyboard line recalling his work before blossoming into a more advanced form of clubby synth-pop closer to Ladytron — who are, after all, Moroder’s musical descendants. And in the closing “Contact,” an Apollo 17 transmission sets up a mathematical keyboard line playing against a full-chord organ while live drums crash and roll in a hyperspace rush that sends “Random Access Memories,” and Daft Punk, back to the future. (Out Tuesday)


That’s exactly what Mick Jones is aiming for – the new box set will be called Sound System and will contain The Clash’s first five albums, three CDs of rarities, singles, and demos, a DVD of previously unseen footage, and reproductions (as well as a new edition) of their fanzine, Armagideon Time. Oh, one more thing: bassist Paul Simonon designed it to look like an ’80s boombox. Pretty sweet. Via The Guardian:

“The concept of the whole thing is: best box set ever,” Clash guitarist Mick Jones – who oversaw the remastering – told the Guardian. “Remastering’s a really amazing thing. That was the musical point of it all, because there’s so much there that you wouldn’t have heard before. It was like discovering stuff, because the advances in mastering are so immense since the last time [the Clash catalogue] was remastered in the 90s.”

All the music has been remastered from the original tapes, Jones said. “We had to bake the tapes beforehand – the oxide on them is where the music is, so if you don’t put them in the oven and bake them, that all falls off, because they’re so old.”

For the band, hearing some of these old recordings was like hearing for the first time.

Bassist Simonon highlighted a guitar line on Safe European Home, from the band’s second album Give ‘Em Enough Rope, saying he’d never even heard it before. “It’s probably some session musician, while I was asleep,” Jones joked.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Watch Queens of the Stone Age’s Like Clockwork 15-Minute-Long Short Film

Queens of the Stone Age have capped their series of creepy animated videos with a 15-minute short film. It’s made of cryptic cartoon images by Boneface (who designed their new album cover) with animation by Liam Brazier and compiles their previously shared …Like Clockwork videos.
The band has released individual videos for Clockwork tracks “I Appear Missing”, “Kalopsia”, “If I Had a Tail”, “Keep Your Eyes Peeled”, and “My God Is the Sun”.

…Like Clockwork, the new Queens of the Stone Age LP, is out on June 4 through Matador.


In a recent episode, the Simpsons traveled to Iceland and ran into Sigur Rós and Björk. Not only that, but Sigur Rós also contributed their version of The Simpsons theme song. Via NME:

Speaking about their involvement with the show previously, Sigur Ros said in a statement: “The band’s music scores Homer’s visit to Iceland, make an unprecedented musical collaboration between the show and a band; with this episode, Sigur Ros have written and performed more original music for The Simpsons than any other outside band in the show’s history.”

Monday, May 20, 2013

The Doors’ Ray Manzarek dead at 74

If ever there was a sonic wail that could compete with Jim Morrison’s haunting vocals, it was the piercing, throbbing wail of Doors’ keyboardist Ray Manzarek’s Vox Continental organ.

That sound has been silenced with Manzarek’s death Monday in Rosenheim, Germany, where, according to the band’s Facebook page, the 74-year-old co-founder of one of the 1960s’ most influential bands had been hospitalized as he battled bile duct cancer.

“I was deeply saddened to hear about the passing of my friend and bandmate,” said Doors guitarist Robby Krieger in a statement. “Ray was a huge part of my life and I will always miss him.”

Manzarek and Krieger had toured together for the past 10 years; drummer John Densmore’s relationship with his former bandmates has been more fractured, mainly because of disagreements over how the band’s legacy should be treated financially.

The iconic rock band famously had its 1965 genesis when Manzarek and Morrison, who were both students at the University of California at Los Angeles, met up at the beach and Morrison recited some of his poetry for his friend.

It was the iconoclastic makeup of The Doors that helped make them a success from the monster debut of the group’s self-titled 1967 album.

There was Morrison’s otherworldly howl, Krieger’s Spanish-influenced guitar work, Densmore’s subtle, jazz-infused drumming and perhaps most striking of all, Manzarek’s keyboard, which did triple-duty as lead instrument, accompanying instrument and the band’s lone bass sound. Together, the group recorded five multiplatinum albums and had hits with L.A. Woman, Break On Through to the Other Side, The End and the Manzarek showcase, Light My Fire.

“You just can’t imagine Light My Fire without Manzarek’s organ,” says Andy Greene, associate editor of Rolling Stone. “He was unquestionably one of the best rock keyboardists ever. But more than that, he was proud of the band’s legacy (after Morrison’s 1971 death in Paris). The Doors came back in a big way in the ’80s and Ray was mainly the one carrying the flame.”

Greg Harris, CEO of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, of which Manzarek was an inductee and at whose ceremonies he was a frequent performer, said the organist was “instrumental in shaping one of the most influential, controversial and revolutionary groups of the ’60s, (which owes) much to Manzarek’s innovative playing.”

For many fans and musicians alike, The Doors’ brooding and sometimes dark sound crystallized the experimental rock music emanating from Los Angeles, which stood in stark contrast to the lighter, soaring sound coming out of the San Francisco Bay Area that was typified by the Grateful Dead and Jefferson Airplane.

“The Doors represent the L.A. sound for me,” tweeted rock guitar legend Slash, whose own debut band, Guns N’ Roses, came to define the raw Hollywood-bred music of the late ’80s and early ’90s. “RIP Ray Manzarek. Words cannot express.”

Fans are being asked to donate in Manzarek’s name to

Tame Impala Lose Bassist Nick Allbrook

Tame Impala’s bassist, Nick Allbrook, has left the band. He played his last show with them at Perth’s Belvoir Amphitheatre on Saturday night, and will be replaced by Cam Avery, who plays in Pond, a band fronted by Allbrook.

A post on Tame Impala’s website stated that Allbrook was “hopping off the Tame Impala band wagon so that he can try and screw his head back on, and make an attempt to assimilate back into society. A task the rest of us fear we will one day have to perform….”
Allbrook told NME, “All bands and projects and stuff will keep going, it’s just hard to keep them all going if you’re touring all the time. The only bad part will be not seeing my mates every day. I love them more than anything.”

Tame Impala continue to tour last year’s Lonerism, and will play this weekend’s Primavera Sound Festival. Check out their tour dates below, followed by a film of the band performing “Feels Like We Only Go Backwards”.

Tame Impala:
05-23 Barcelona, Spain – Primavera
05-25 The Gorge, WA – Sasquatch Festival
05-26 Portland, OR – Crystal Ballroom
05-27 Vancouver, British Columbia – Commodore Ballroom
05-29 Oakland, CA – Fox Theater
06-17 Atlanta, GA – The Tabernacle
06-18 Richmond, VA – The National
06-19 Philadelphia, PA – Electric Factory
06-25 London, England – Hammersmith Apollo
06-26 Paris, France – Olympia Hall
07-03 Berlin, Germany – Astra
07-04 Gdynia, Poland – Open’er
07-11 Toulouse, France – Le Bikini
07-13 Madrid, Spain – La Riviera
07-14 Lisbon, Portugal – Optimus Alive


Pogues guitarist Phillip Chevron has been diagnosed with terminal head and neck cancer. Chevron fought the same disease in 2007. Via Exclaim:

The head and neck cancer for which he received treatment in 2007 and a clean bill of health in April 2012 has in fact returned. In August 2012, Philip and his doctors noticed a new tumour and this one is in a position whereby treatment is seriously ill-advised and would almost certainly cause a stroke or worse. The cancer is, in short, inoperable and will prove fatal in time, though it is at present impossible to measure life expectancy. Chevron, who was last year part of the releases The Pogues In Paris and The Radiators’ Sound City Beat, is currently taking a break from both bands. The Pogues are on a prolonged time out, emerging only in support of matters relating to their 30th anniversary this year, while the Radiators From Space have formed a splinter group, The Trouble Pilgrims, in which Chevron plays no part. In recent times, Chevron has accepted several theatre music commissions, including the Old Vic Theatre in London and Galway’s Druid Theatre.

Philip thanks his friends, colleagues, family and management team for their enduring support and hopes to make some notable musical contributions before, as he puts it, the cancer becomes “lethal.

Chevron played in Irish punk band Radiators from Space prior to joining The Pogues in the mid-’80s.

Thursday, May 16, 2013


“Burn It All Down”

If I Had A Tail