Monday, January 31, 2011

The Kills - New Song, Album Info, Tour Dates

Scuzzy blooz duo The Kills have reconvened for their 4th full-length Blood Pressures, out on April 5th via Domino Records. Jamie Hince and Alison Mosshart returned to Key Club Studios in Benton Harbor, Michigan where they reunited with studio owners and Midnight Boom engineers Bill Skibbe and Jessica Ruffins. Produced by Hince, the album was mixed in London by Tom Elmhirst.

Check out the tracklisting, sample the first track "Satellite" and watch a brief promo vid for the forthcoming record. They'll appear alongside other Domino artists at SXSW, and will return to Austin for a headlining show at La Zona Rosa on April 20th with Cold Cave and The Entrance Band. This Is Fake DIY lists all of their tour dates.

Blood Pressures tracklisting:

1. Future Starts Slow
2. Satellite
3. Heart Is A Beating Drum
4. Nail In My Coffin
5. Wild Charms
6. DNA
7. Baby Says
8. Last Goodbye
9. Damned If She Do
10. You Don't Own The Road
11. Pots and Pans

[STREAM] The Kills - "Satellite" by DominoRecordCo


The Kills | Myspace Music Videos

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Ringo Deathstarr - Colour Trip

Ringo Deathstarr is unique to the incredibly fertile Austin scene in that their worn-on-sleeve influences are so clearly British. Listening to their new outing Colour Trip - note the spelling - you can check off the sounds of any number of noisy shoegazers that came before them. You won't be able to listen to the intro of "Never Drive" or "You Don't Listen" without having The Jesus and Mary Chain cross your mind. "Imagine Hearts" and "Chloe" could be Loveless outtakes, and "So High" sounds like it could have been unearthed from The Primitives' catalogue. The unifying feature is the incredibly catchy melodies, whether buried under layers of noise or not, as on the hazy "Day Dreamy". With only one song of eleven longer than 3:30, the 32 minute disc zips by quickly. (BTW - I'm all for shorter, more frequent releases from artists. Just sayin'.)

Formed in 2005, and after releasing several singles and EP's, Colour Trip marks the full-length debut for the trio of Elliott Frazier (gtr, vox), Alex Gehring (bass, vox) and Daniel Coborn (drums). Club AC30 will put it out in Britain on February 14th while North America gets it on March 8th via Canadian indie Sonic Unyon. They band heads to Europe next month as support for Dean Wareham (Luna, Galaxie 500) before returning home to play at SXSW. A US tour will be announced shortly.

If any of the bands mentioned reside in your collection, make room alongside for Ringo Deathstarr. Pre-order Colour Trip from Club AC30, Sonic Unyon. Watch the vids for "Imagine Hearts" and "So High" below.

RINGO DEATHSTARR - SO HIGH from cassandra lee hamilton on Vimeo.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

The Radio Dept. - Passive Aggressive (Singles 2002-2010)

You may not find a more well-timed release than the new singles/b-sides collection from The Radio Dept.. Fresh off last year's Clinging To A Scheme, the shy Swedes are kicking off their most extensive US tour to date on Tuesday. Despite enjoying critical acclaim since their Lesser Matters debut in 2003, the band's lack of tour $upport has limited them to three extremely brief sets of US dates, none of which penetrated beyond the coasts (according to their own gigography, they went nearly 6 years between US performances). To capitalize on increased visibility, longtime label Labrador has just released a 2-CD set of singles, giving the A and B sides their own disc. Here's an instant ccllection for a band whose releases haven't always been the easiest to find. A comprehensive introduction and an essential release. Buy it: Labrador, iTunes.

THE RADIO DEPT. 2011 North American Tour:

Feb 1 Washington, D.C. (Rock N Roll Hotel)
Feb 2 New York (Webster Hall)
Feb 3 New York (Webster Hall)
Feb 4 Boston (Middle East Downstairs)
Feb 5 Montreal (Petit Campus)
Feb 7 Toronto (Lee’s Palace)
Feb 8 Chicago (Empty Bottle)
Feb 9 Minneapolis (7th Street Entry)
Feb 12 Seattle (Crocodile Café)
Feb 13 Portland, OR (Doug Fir Lounge)
Feb 14 Sacramento (Luigis)
Feb 15 San Francisco (The Independent)
Feb 16 Los Angeles (El Rey Theatre)
Feb 19 Mexico City (Teatro de la Ciudad)

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

New Tunes Tuesday - January 25, 2011

I'm going to play a bit of catch up on New Tunes Tuesday this week. Some of these songs have been floating about for a while, so if you consume the blogosphere on a daily or even hourly basis, a few of these might be old news. Nonetheless, they're worthy of bringing to your attention so here they are. I just came across the 120 Days track and think it's mighty solid. Welcome back, boys.

The Beat'cast returns next week. You can review those using the links at the foot of the post.

PETER BJORN AND JOHN "Breaker Breaker" (StarTime International) - In what could be seen as a pivotal release for the trio, this short, rollicking number is a fair preview as to what listeners can expect on Gimme Some, due in late March.

[DOWNLOAD] Peter Bjorn and John - "Breaker Breaker"

CLOUD NOTHINGS "Should Have" (Carpark) - Clevelander Dylan Baldi's proper full-length debut isn't nearly as lo-fi as last year's Turning On compilation. But as this song indicates, it retains nearly all of the sweet, shambolic melodies that earned him notice in the first place. I gotta believe he and Robert Pollard could form a mutual admiration society. (Austin: March 16-19 @ SXSW)

[STREAM] Cloud Nothings - "Should Have" (via Carpark Records)

JESSICA LEA MAYFIELD "Our Hearts Are Wrong" (Nonesuch) - I was a huge fan of her debut, the Dan Auerbach produced With Blasphemy So Heartfelt (my #8 of 2008), so I'm pleased to see they've hooked up again on Tell Me, in stores February 8th. I wrote this introduction back in the day and if you like, download a few session tracks as well. (Austin: March 16-19 @ SXSW)

PAPERCUTS "John Brown" (Sub Pop) - After a few well received releases on some tiny indies, Jason Quever makes the huge leap to Sup Pop for the forthcoming Fading Parade, out on March 1st. His brand of dreampop should make for an intoxicating mix with rumored tour partner Still Corners. (TBB coverage)

[STREAM] Papercuts - "John Brown" (via Sub Pop)

FUJIYA & MIYAGI "Ventriloquizzing" (Yep Roc) - Here's another band I fell hard for a few years ago (my #2 of 2007) but will admit that their last record Lightbulbs left me a but cold. The new Ventriloquizzing includes a few more electronic flourishes, which fit neatly into their krautrock template. They've moved to Yep Roc for this fourth disc. Here's hoping the new partnership allows them to regain some of their mojo.

[STREAM] Fujiya & Miyagi - "Ventriloquizzing" (via indie-teque)

120 DAYS "Dale Disco" (Vice) - I kind of love it when a band disappears completely, only to return with a song that knocks it out of the park. This neo-krautrock instrumental should satisfy anyone who paid them mind the first time 'round. Like their previous work, "Dale Disco" is a lengthy, slow builder that draws the listener in as it picks up the pace. There's a palpable sense of tension as the beat builds, coming to a boil without overflowing. Add this to your workout mix.

[STREAM] 120 Days - "Dale Disco" (via Up Front Artists)

MILLIONYOUNG "Replicants" (Old Flame/Rix) - Sun-kissed electronic indie pop by Mike Diaz from Miami F-L-A. His full-length debut is out now digitally and arrives physically on Feb. 15th via former WOXY DJ Rob Mason's Old Flame label. It's chillwave with a beat that fans of, say, Neon Indian should investigate. (Austin: March 16-19 @ SXSW)

[STREAM] Millionyoung - "Replicants" by Old Flame Records

YELLE "Safari Disco Club" (V2) - This cute-as-a-button Frenchwoman arrived in 2008 buoyed by the support of tastemakers like KCRW & KEXP. She charmed the crowd at last year's ACL Festival with an energetic display of bouncy retro-pop and let's face it, a catchy tune sung in French is pretty farkin' cool, simply because it's so rare. Expect her profile to continue on the upswing with the release of her 2nd album Safari Disco Club in March on the revived V2 label. She starts a month long US tour at Coachella. (Austin: April 22nd @ Mohawk)

[DOWNLOAD] Yelle - "Safari Disco Club"

GANG OF FOUR "Who Am I" (Yep Roc) - The legendary post-punk band is back with their first album on new material since 1995. Only Andy Gill & John King remain from the original lineup: drummer Hugo Burnham retired and bassist Dave Allen returned to his many business interests, including his Pampelmoose blog. But kind of like their contemporaries Wire, Go4's music is fierce and purposeful and no mere nostalgia act. A three week North American tour begins April 2nd.

THERAPIES SON "Touching Down" (Transparent) - Leave it Transparent to discover Californian Alex Jacobs (aka Therapies Son), whose John Lennon cum Wayne Coyne vocals propel the easy charm of "Touching Down". Matter of fact, the song sounds a bit like "Mind Games" with George Harrison on guitar. Nevertheless, it's kind of like a stroll through the field on a warm Spring day. Look for an EP in the coming months. (Austin: March 16-19 @ SXSW)

[STREAM] Therapies Son - "Touching Down" (via Transparent Records)

LYKKE LI "I Follow Rivers" (Atlantic) - Bjorn Ytlling's back to produce Li's second full-length Wounded Ryhmes, out in March. On the heels of the previously released "Get Some", she's poised to reach a wider audience. A US tour begins in May.

[STREAM] Lykke Li - "I Follow Rivers" by LykkeLi

THE GO! TEAM "Buy Nothing Day" (Memphis Industries) - Best Coast's Bethany Cosentino guests (and stars) on this track from Rolling Blackouts, out next week. A short North American tour begins April 10th.

[STREAM] The Go! Team - "Buy Nothing Day" by thegoteam

New Tunes Tuesday / The Big Beat'cast 07 (Jan. 18)
The Big Beat'cast 06 (Austin) (Jan. 11)
New Tunes Tuesday / The Big Beat'cast 05 (Jan. 4)
The Big Beat'cast 04 (Dec. 13)
The Big Beat'cast 03 (Nov. 29)
New Tunes Tuesday (Nov. 23)
New Tunes Tuesday / The Big Beat'cast 02 (Nov. 2)
New Tunes Tuesday / The Big Beat'cast 01 (Oct. 19)

Monday, January 24, 2011

The Joy Formidable announce US Tour

Welsh trio The Joy Formidable will get a fair shot at cracking America with a lengthy tour that starts at SXSW, finishes in New York and includes Coachella in-between. Debut full-length The Big Roar was released in the UK today, hits the EU February 21st and March 15th in the US. The songs which first appeared on A Balloon Called Moaning have all been re-recorded and sound terrific. "Whirring", in particular, is extended by over 3 full minutes by a good ol' fashioned jam. Rock bands, sheesh.

Tickets are available HERE before they go on sale to the general public this Friday. You can also pre-order a digital copy of the album along with your ticket purchase and get access to an exclusive site where you can stream the entire album as many times as you like until street date (March 15) when the digital album is delivered to you via email.

You can use the following login to access this exclusive presale:
username: thejoy
password: formidable

THE JOY FORMIDABLE 2011 North American Tour

March 16 Austin (SXSW)
March 17 Austin (SXSW)
March 18 Austin (SXSW)
March 19 Austin (SXSW)

March 22 Atlanta (The Earl)
March 24 Durham, NC (Duke University)
March 25 Washington, DC (Black Cat)
March 26 Albany, NY (Valentines)
March 28 Providence (The Met)
March 29 Boston (Brighton Music Hall)
March 30 Philadelphia (Johnny Brenda's)
March 31 Princeton, NJ (Terrace Club)
April 1 Harrisburg, PA (The Abbey)
April 2 Toronto (Horseshoe Tavern)
April 4 Columbus, OH (The Basement)
April 5 Chicago (Lincoln Hall)
April 6 Minneapolis (7th Street Entry)
April 8 Denver (Larimier Lounge)
April 9 Salt Lake City (Kilby Court)
April 11 Portland, OR (Mississippi Studio)
April 12 Seattle (Crocodile)
April 14 San Francisco (Bottom of the Hill)
April 16 Indio, CA (Coachella)
April 19 Phoenix (Rhythm Room)
April 20 Albuquerque (Launchpad)
April 22 St. Louis (Luminary Arts Center)
April 23 Kansas City (Riot Room)
April 26 Cleveland (Grog Shop)
April 27 Pittsburgh (The Smiling Moose)
April 29 New York (Webster Hall)

The Joy Formidable - "Austere" vs. "Austere"
The Joy Formidable - New Single, Album, Tour

Still Corners - Confirm SXSW, US Tour

I love this time of year. Records being released, tours being announced, SXSW appearances being confirmed. You get the idea. For me, SX has always been about getting to see bands that don't tour regularly and more often than not, that means they're from overseas. Granted, Austin gets more than its share of touring bands and having SXSW, ACL, and Fun Fun Fun Fest in your back yard is like having three aces in the hole.

One of my favorite new bands, dreamgazers Still Corners, posted this on their Facebook page earlier today: "Sorry, it looks like we 'jumped the gun' on the tour announcement. stay tuned".

Still Corners - "Wish"

So then, it's off to their MySpace page, where SXSW dates were listed in addition to a previously announced date in Brooklyn. Although the Festival has yet to confirm them, that's hardly a surprising development. Next, to Bandcamp. Nothing. Finally to their own site, where a more extensive list of dates is revealed.

UPDATE (2/2): all of the post-SXSW dates, at one time removed from the band's itinerary, are back on.

March 12 Brooklyn (Glasslands)
March 16 Austin (SXSW)
March 17 Austin (SXSW)
March 18 Austin (SXSW)
March 19 Austin (SXSW)
March 20 Austin (SXSW)

March 21 St. Louis (Off Broadway)*
March 22 Bloomington, IN (The Bishop)*
March 23 Chicago (Schubas)*
March 24 Columbus, OH (Wexner Center)*
March 25 Pittsburgh (Brillobox)*
March 26 New York (Mercury Lounge)*
March 27 Boston (Brighton Music Hall)*

* w/ Papercuts

LISTEN: Esben and the Witch - Violet Cries

I've been anticipating the UK trio's debut for a while, so feel free to sample it in its entirety before the official release on January 31st. Watch out the video for new single "Warpath":

[DOWNLOAD] Esben and the Witch - "Warpaint" (edit) (via Matador Records)

Esben and the Witch 2011 North American Tour

March 3 Washington, DC (Red Palace)
March 4 Brooklyn (Bell House)
March 5 New York (Mercury Lounge)
March 6 Boston (Brighton Music Hall)
March 7 Philadelphia (Kung Fu Necktie)
March 8 Pittsburgh (Brillobox)
March 9 Akron (Musica)
March 10 Chicago (Empty Bottle)
March 11 Toronto (Wrongbar)
March 12 Denton, TX (35 Conferette)
March 19 Austin (Mess With Texas)
March 22 Los Angeles (Bootleg Theater)
March 23 San Francisco (Bottom of the Hill)
March 24 Portland, OR (Mississippi Studios)
March 25 Seattle (Sunset Tavern)
March 26 Vancouver, BC (Waldorf Hotel)

There's a noticeable gap in the itinerary during SXSW, so expect their name to be officially added soon to go along with their Mess With Texas appearance. A European tour kicks off on the album's release date. See those here.

MORE from Esben and the Witch:

Mogwai - Hardcore Will Never Die, But You Will

Mogwai's a polarizing band. All instrumental and normally noisy as hell, listeners either buy in - in varying degrees - or tend to stay away entirely. Interestingly though, their softer, ethereal "Hunted By A Freak" is their most listened to song on and admittedly, it's my favorite as well.

After nearly a decade on Matador in the US, their seventh studio record Hardcore Will Never Die, But You Will will be released by Sub Pop on February 15th, and the day before in Europe on their own Rock Action label. They've already released two tracks for download that serves as a healthy preview of the disc, and have mapped out a lengthy US tour. Details below.

Hardcore Will Never Die, But You Will tracklisting:

White Noise
Mexican Grand Prix
Rano Pano (video)
Death Rays
San Pedro
Letters To The Metro
George Square Thatcher Death Party
How To Be A Werewolf
Too Raging To Cheers
You're Lionel Richie

[DOWNLOAD] Mogwai - "Rano Pano" by subpop

[DOWNLOAD] Mogwai - "San Pedro" by subpop

MOGWAI 2011 North American Tour

April 19 Washington, DC (9:30 Club)
April 20 Philadelphia (Starlight Ballroom)
April 21 New York (Webster Hall)
April 22 New York (Webster Hall)
April 23 Boston (Paradise Rock Club)
April 25 Montreal (Olympia Theater)
April 26 Toronto (Phoenix Concert Theatre)
April 27 Pittsburgh (Mr. Smalls)
April 28 Detroit (St. Andrews Hall)
April 29 Chicago (Metro)
April 30 Omaha (Slowdown)
May 2 Denver (Bluebird)
May 3 Salt Late City (In the Venue)
May 5 Portland, OR (Wonder Ballroom)
May 6 Vancouver, BC (Commodore Ballroom)
May 7 Seattle (Showbox at the Market)
May 9 San Francisco (Regency Ballroom)
May 10 Los Angeles (Mayan Theater)
May 11 Solana Beach, CA (Belly Up Tavern)
May 13 Albuquerque (Sunshine Theatre)
May 15 Dallas (Granada Theatre)
May 16 Austin (Stubbs)
May 17 Houston (Warehouse Live)
May 19 Birmingham, AL (Workplay Theater)
May 20 Atlanta (Center Stage)

Their band'll be on the road forever, starting Wednesday (Jan 26) in Scotland. See worldwide tour dates here.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

The Art of the Shuffle, Vol. 2


I have my music sorted out between my aged 40GB iPod (identical to the picture) and my 8GB iPhone. The library resides on my desktop/iPod while I put most of the new stuff I get on my laptop/iPhone. This way, I have one for reviewing the latest but when I want a lengthy mix, I reach for the catalogue.

So, here's the latest long shuffle from my old beast, Version 3.1.1, currently with 5155 songs, meaning I've not added anything to it since Vol. 1. How 'boutcha, Garbage?:

David Bowie - Heroes
Brazilian Girls - Internacional
The Fall - Rollin' Dany
(Ken-L Ration commercial - "My Dog's Better Than Your Dog")
Primal Scream - MBV Arkestra (If They Move Kill 'Em)
Garbage - Stupid Girl
The Futureheads - Area
Pixies - Hey
Garbage - Vow
The Raconteurs - Hands
AC/DC - Shake A Leg
Dido - Don't Think Of Me
Mosquitos - Boombox
Wolf Parade - I'll Believe In Anything
The Beatles - For No One
Deluka - Morning Comes
Midnight Oil - Hercules
Bee Gees - Stayin' Alive
R.E.M. - Orange Crush
Head and Neck Sessions - Months Apart
Sly & The Family Stone - I Want To Take You Higher
Foals - Alabaster
Arctic Monkeys - A Certain Romance
Heart - Dreamboat Annie
Aberdeen - The Boy Has Gone Away (radio mix)
(Gorillaz - Intro [ Lounge Act])
Janelle Monae - Mushrooms & Roses
Love And Rockets - If There's A Heaven Above
Nneka - Heartbeat
Joe Jackson - Real Men
Portishead - Over
Charlie Parker - Embraceable You
The Hold Steady - Sequestered In Memphis
Thievery Corporation - Vampires
The Manhattan Love Suicides - (The Guy On The) 14th Floor
The Strokes - Is This It?
Dum Dum Girls - Blank Girl
Franco - Tika Kondima Na Zolo
The Go-Go's - Our Lips Are Sealed
Propaganda - The Last Word/Strength To Dream
Sade - Your Love Is King

How about you?

The Art of the Shuffle, Vol. 1
In-Flight Playlist - LAX -> PHX -> AUS
In-Flight Playlist – AUS -> PHX -> LAX

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

New Tunes Tuesday / The Big Beat 'cast 07

After a few weeks of gathering music, let's consider this Beat'cast a proper New Tunes Tuesday. I've also gone on a tangent, paying tribute to a few bands from New Zealand. Between there and Australia, it sure seems like those countries are putting out some great music at the moment. Just press play on the show, and you should notice an old favorite has crept back into the fold. Look even closer, and you'll be able to do something you never have before.

Aw, poop! I had to take this Beat'cast down, but here's what was played:

BEST COAST "When You Wake Up" (Mexican Summer), from Summer Is Forever EP - I've had a bit of a rollercoaster feeling about Best Coast. Loved the early singles, got turned off by the hype around the album, was unimpressed by the live show but this song kind of gets me back to the initial feeling. A previously unreleased track included on a split EP with tourmates Wavves and No Joy, this bit of audio sunshine will cut through even the cloudiest winter day.

DJ LANCE LOCKARM "Bring The Muzik Back" (none) - A total guilty pleasure, here's an old skool, bootleg mashup from the pre-Girl Talk days when labels were vowing to hunt down DJ's like lobbyists after a new congressman.

SMITH WESTERNS "Fallen In Love" (Fat Possum), from Dye It Blonde - The indie music media has seemed to coalesce around this young Chicago band's second record, which is nothing more than a good old-fashioned indie rock record of the kind your cool older sibling listened to.

PARTS & LABOR "Constant Future" (Jagjaguwar), from Constant Future - Each of the Brooklyn band's last two outings, Mapmaker (2007) and Receivers (2008), landed on my year-end Top 20 list, proving that there's still a little rock left in indie rock. Guitarist Sarah Lipstate's departure reduced the band to a trio, so we'll see how that affects the sound of the full-length, due on March 8th.

[DOWNLOAD] Parts & Labor - "Constant Future" (via One Thirty BPM)

YUCK "Get Away" (Fat Possum), from Yuck - OK, if someone were to tell me that J. Mascis produced this record, I'd totally buy it. Yuck's the rare British band that, for the most part, sound American and in this case, circa 1992. The album's full of fuzzy grungepop of the kind that's inhabited our radio waves for the better part of two decades. Competent, catchy, interesting? Sure. New, fresh, forward-thinking? Maybe not so much. Still, I expect them to find an audience in the US although I'm guessing the terminally trendy just might say 'ewww' to Yuck.

ANNA CALVI "Love Won't Be Leaving" (Domino), from Anna Calvi - PJ Harvey fans, listen up! This British siren will be someone you'll hear a lot about over the next few months. (TBB coverage)

[STREAM] Anna Calvi - "Love Won't Be Leaving"

WORLD TOUR "Sparks" (Cascine), free download - More chilled atmospherics from Scandinavia that gives hope for what's to come. (TBB coverage)

[DOWNLOAD] World Tour - "Sparks" by Cascine

THE SOFT MOON "Circles" (Captured Tracks), from The Soft Moon - A hat tip to Facebook friend Matt Lacefield for putting this on my radar. The debut from San Francisco's Luis Vasquez is a blend of post-punk, krautrock, and prog: all things that make my heart race a bit. With a bit of goth-y undertones, it's easy to hear this bumping up next to Bauhaus or early New Order.

[DOWNLOAD] BROADCAST "Come On Let's Go" (Tommy Boy), from The Noise Made By People - Trish Keenan's passing last week came as a shock. She'll be missed. (via The Finest Kiss) (TBB coverage)

[DOWNLOAD] THE VEILS "Bloom" (Pitch Beast), from Troubles of the Brain EP - London-based New Zealander Finn Andrews, then and always The Veils, takes the reins of the entire process by issuing this new EP on his own label. Troubles of the Brain is another set of plaintive, darkly-hued indie rock, reminiscent of Nick Cave and U2 at their most melancholic. (via Rollo & Grady)

THE CHILLS "I Love My Leather Jacket" (Flying Nun), from Kaleidoscope World - One of the standard bearers of the seminal Flying Nun label, The Chills are best remembered in the US for their 1990 semi alt-hit "Heavenly Pop Hit". A few years prior, this three minutes of vintage drone pop reached #4 on the New Zealand pop chart in 1986. Their compilation of early singles, Kaleidoscope World, is the band's essential document.

SPLIT ENZ "I Got You" (A&M), from True Colours - Forming at Auckland University in 1971, they'd already released four albums before this smash put them on the world stage in 1979. Vocalist Neil Finn went on to even greater fame with Crowded House before embarking on a moderately successful solo career. In 2009, he spearheaded the charity record The Sun Came Out under the name 7 Worlds Collide that featured Johnny Marr, along with members of Wilco and Radiohead. (This is one of my all-time favorite songs...)

[DOWNLOAD] SECRET KNIVES "The Garden" (A Low Hum), from Affection - Another track from the Affection disc that's fully free to download. One of the best CD's of the past year and worthy of your attention. (TBB coverage)

[DOWNLOAD] DUCKTAILS "Killin' The Vibe" (feat. Panda Bear), from Ducktails III: Arcade Dynamics - Real Estate guitarist Matthew Mondanile offers another solo turn as Ducktails. The digital download that comes with the vinyl version includes this alternate take featuring Panda Bear, which is enough to send Animal Collective fans into a panic. (via ListenBeforeYouBuy)

Monday, January 17, 2011

New PJ Harvey Video - "The Words That Maketh Murder"

The second video from PJ Harvey's forthcoming Let England Shake has been released, "The Words That Maketh Murder". As with the previously released clip for the "The Last Living Rose", it was directed by photographer Seamus Murphy, commissioned to make videos for each of the disc's 12 songs. Oddly, no video has yet been released for the song (and presumed single) issued for free download, "Written On The Forehead". The full-length will be released on February 15th via new US label Vagrant.

Friday, January 14, 2011

World Tour "Sparks"

I used to say that there are two real hot times of the year for new music: right before the return to school in the Autumn (Aug/Sept/Oct), and now (Jan/Feb/Mar). To that end, I've been really happy about the wealth of music that's come my way this week. It'll make programming the next few New Tunes Tuesdays and Beat'casts that much easier. But, it gets to be like filling out a lineup card: who do you put in; who do you leave out?

Say hello to World Tour. Pretty near impossible to locate via Google, and wouldn't you know most of the postings I've seen elsewhere about 'em tend parrot the press copy, which must not have included from where they're from. Damn hippies.

Well, after a bit of digging, I found that they're Swedish and the latest signing to the burgeoning Cascine label. So, is this more of the chilled atmospheric stuff that Scandinavia regularly turns out? Sure is. A bit less electronic than others but equally as terrific. The band says '"Sparks" is a story about dreaming, defying death and fighting the darkness. About the belief of beginning something new and a reliance on your origin.' Expect their debut EP to drop within a few months. Look and listen:

[DOWNLOAD] World Tour - "Sparks" by CASCINE

BBC Sound of 2011 - Anna Calvi

Get ready for Anna Calvi.

One of 15 artists shortlisted for the BBC Sound of 2011, awarded to pop starlet Jessie J, she releases her self-titled debut on Monday in the UK via the terminally cool Domino label (USA, March 1). And what a debut it is...

Instantly recalling PJ Harvey, who at first instantly recalled Patti Smith, Calvi seduces the listener with dark, atmospheric romantic pop. In fact, it's inevitable that she'll be compared to Harvey for several reasons.

Her debut was recorded under the watchful eye of Rob Ellis, who produced both Harvey's own debut Dry in addition to her Mercury Prize winning Stories From The City, Stories From The Sea. Also, one of Calvi's early supporters is Harvey's one-time paramour Nick Cave, who invited her to support his band Grinderman on a European tour this past Autumn.

Additionally, a scan of her press photos and videos reveal an artist clearly tinkering with her image much in the same way Harvey has done throughout her entire career. From the bombshell-like promo shot above to the seemingly stern bandleader in the video below, one gets the sense there's a great deal of depth to Ms. Calvi waiting to be discovered, although you just might have to peel back a few layers to get to the real person.

In any event, early reviews from the UK (where holding reviews until release date doesn't apply) have varied widely, tipped off by a pre-emptive strike that arrived shortly before the new year.

Watch her performing first single "Jezebel", an Edith Piaf cover (seriously, who covers Edith Piaf???) which won't be included on the album.

Sample a few highlights from Anna Calvi here:

ANNA CALVI 2010 North American Tour

March 8 NYC (Joe's Pub)
March 9 NYC (Mercury Lounge)
March 10 Brooklyn (Glasslands)
March 11 Toronto (Wrongbar)
Mar 16-19 Austin (SXSW)

R.I.P. Trish Keenan of Broadcast

Terrible news this morning:

It is with great sadness we announce that Trish Keenan from Broadcast passed away at 9am this morning in hospital. She died from complications with pnuemonia after battling the illness for two weeks in intensive care.

Our thoughts go out to James, Martin, her friends and her family and we request that the public respect their wishes for privacy at this time.

This is an untimely tragic loss and we will miss Trish dearly – a unique voice, an extraordinary talent and a beautiful human being. Rest in Peace.

- Warp Records

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

LISTEN: Casual Victim Pile II

Remember the days when A&R guys and label heads used to sign artists they thought were good first, and worry about how many records they'd sell - excuse me, units they'd move - second? No? Well, thankfully, that's why we're drawn to indie labels that do their best to follow that ethic, right? And that's why I'm a fan of the Casual Victim Pile discs. According to Matador Records co-owner (and Austin resident) Gerard Cosloy, these are bands you need to know about.

He's resurrected his 12XU label for a one-off release: a follow-up to last years Casual Victim Pile: Austin 2010, dubbed Casual Victim Pile II. Like the first, it's loaded with Austin bands he feels worthy of attention and with his track record, I'm inclined to trust his judgment. It'll be released on vinyl February 22nd or you can grab it digitally for $10 now. As with last year's CVP release, most of the bands on this one will be playing at Beerland over the course of three nights: March 3, 4 and 5.

Listen / Purchase, read liner notes on Bandcamp.  Check out an excellent piece on Cosloy & CVP by the Austin American-Statesman (from 2010) here.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

The Big Beat 'cast 06


I've put together a special edition of the 'cast this week, turning the spotlight on some of the bands in this extremely fertile Austin music scene. Mind you, this just barely scratches the surface of the wealth of excellent artists who are either natives or simply got here as fast as they could. It's kind of amazing that the 35th largest city (metro area) has a scene that rivals that of much larger cities around the world. So, Welcome To Austin.

Crap on a stick! I had to take this Beat'cast down, but check the tracklisting:

GIRL IN A COMA "Transmission" (Blackheart), from Adventures In Coverland - I'll bookend the 'cast with the one band not from ATX in the lineup, but they're from San Antonio so for our purposes that's close enough. A quartet of ladies, signed to Joan Jett's label, they issued this disc of cover tunes last year. I love it when bands give an established favorite a new treatment, and the Girls nail it here.

FOLLOW THAT BIRD! "The Ghosts That Wake You" (Matador), from Casual Victim Pile: Austin 2010 - This was perhaps the song universally singled out for praise on last year's Cosloy-curated comp. Their website says we can expect a full-length sometime this year. Sample more music here.

THE BLACK ANGELS "Telephone" (Blue Horizon), from Phosphene Dream - One of Austin's better known bands on a wider level, this single proved that the Angels are capable of much more than languid, hazy trips into space.

[DOWNLOAD] RINGO DEATHSTARR "Imagine Hearts" (Club AC30), from Colour Trip - About to finally release their full-length debut after several singles and EP's, the band enjoys followings in both the UK and Japan and, to this point, will be releasing the full-length on a British-based label. Colour Trip hits February 14th in Britain, March 9th in the US. Recommended if you like lots of reverb (and I SURE DO). (via The Mad Mackeral)

YELLOWFEVER "Cats and Rats" (Wild World), from YellowFever - Austin natives Jennifer Moore & Adam Jones have been fixtures on the local scene for the last few years. Her voice recalls Stereolab’s Laetitia Sadier and their brand of art pop has been singularly unique among Austin bands. The Vivian Girls made a self-titled compilation of the band’s recordings the first release on their new Wild World imprint in late 2009.

MONAHANS "Diamonds" (self-released), from 2010 Recordings - In March, this quartet pledged to release a song a month throughout the rest of 2010, and that they did. Most of 'em will comprise an upcoming full-length release. In the meantime, download this and two others - one features vocals from Sinead O'Connor - here. Bassist Josh Zarbo used to be in Spoon.

HARLEM "Friendly Ghost" (Matador) from "Hippies" - Like many Austinites, myself included, Harlem aren't natives but got here as fast as they could. Their Matador debut from last year earned solid notices, upping the ante for the follow-up that I'll imagine will be recorded sometime later in 2011.

SHAPES HAVE FANGS "Rattle and Confuse Me" (self-released), from Dinner In The Dark - I'm really loving what I've heard from their latest effort, presently available only on cassette. Listen to "The Desert" from last week's New Tunes Tuesday.

UME "The Conductor" (self-released), from Sunshower EP - While the trio's Sunshower EP is a full two years old, I couldn't resist the chance to let more people know about 'em. Reviving the best parts of 90's alt-rock you just don't hear much of any more, singer/guitarist Lauren Larson is a force of nature. Their next release could make them famous.

SCHMILLION "Fuse" (self-released), from Schmillion EP - Five high school girls form a band, and rock. Need I say more? Their debut EP was recently released but you can grab a few downloads at their site.

THE YOUNG "Bird In The Bush" (Mexican Summer), from Voyagers Of Legend - A Casual Victim Pile alumnus, their debut was released late last Spring to excellent reviews. If you yearn for the days of Paul Westerberg at his best, spend a moment listening to The Young.

ENGLISH TEETH "Dear Caesar" (self-released), from Two EP - The band's second release is a two-song EP that's another slab of British influenced garage rock. Catchy, upbeat, and will make you move. Somewhere there's probably a British band named American Waistline.

GIRL IN A COMA "Femme Fatale" (Blackheart), from Adventures In Coverland
- Bringing things full circle, the Girls take the VU & Nico classic and stand it on its head, turning it into a jaunty pop tune.

Friday, January 7, 2011

The Duke Spirit - New EP


The Duke Spirit slipped out an EP of new material a few weeks ago. So far, Kusama hasn't received much coverage and I think I get why. One, it was a digital release right before Christmas. Really, who does that? Second, they no longer fit the profile of a band the indie media's going to keep close tabs on. If at one time you've been even kind of an indie band - reviews on Pitchfork, etc. - and opening an Incubus tour is your reaching for the spoils, well, the same crowd that's pimping No Age, Deerhunter, and Das Rascist will probably let you loose. When you don't dance with who brung ya, don't expect 'em to drive you home. In a sense, they remind me of the trajectory of a Silversun Pickups, lauded by the usual outlets at first, less so as the group ingratiates itself to the commercial machine: mainstream tours, radio shows, and so on. Probably a good example of an indie band now best dubbed alternative.

Indie...alternative....listen and decide for yourself. The EP's single "Everybody's Under Your Spell" is a taut li'l rocker that showcases Leila Moss's husky voice, as seductive as ever.

[DOWNLOAD] The Duke Spirit - "Everybody's Under Your Spell" (via Buzz Bands)

The full-length Bruises follows - presumably in February - on the LA indie Shangri-La. Here's another tune from the disc:

[STREAM] The Duke Spirit - "Procession" (via Buzz Bands)

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Download New EP from Star Slinger for Free

A surefire way to generate notices is to give away music for free, and that's what Star Slinger has done (again). TBB just introduced you to the Manchester-based remixer/producer earlier this week, and he's wasting no time ramping up interest in his US forthcoming tour supporting Baths & Braids.

At just over 13 minutes, Rogue Cho Pa is a 6 track EP that was posted on his Soundcloud page last night, yours to freely stream and download. There's a lot of other goodies to sample there, including the NTT'd "Remedy" and the Cocteau Twins rework "Elizabeth Fraser" that fans of the singer should dig.

A heads-up about the NSFW "Do It Yourself" though: headphones might be the move unless you're OK attracting some attention. Otherwise, go right ahead....

Rogue Cho Pa EP by Star Slinger

Tour dates and more at his Myspace page. Visit his Bandcamp page for more, including his Volume 1 mixtape, too.

(Hat tip to ListenBeforeYouBuy. Dude's a blogging machine.)

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

New Tunes Tuesday / The Big Beat 'cast 05

Welcome to 2011! Welcome to The Big Beat! And a special welcome to the readers of This Is Fake DIY. The Beat 'cast will be a regular feature on their site going forward, so I put together this one with you in mind. The tracklisting follows below, and everything listed is included in the hour long program. Enjoy the tunes.

Aw, damn! I had to take this Beat'cast down, but check the tracklisting:

JAMES BLAKE "Wilhelm's Scream" (Atlas/A&M), from James Blake - His self-titled record, probably the most highly anticipated debut of early 2011, arrives on February 7th with a SXSW appearance scheduled. Hopefully, the weight of the hype hasn't crushed him by then. This gorgeous track may be the disc's highlight.

ELBOW "Lippy Kids" (Fiction), from Build A Rocket Boys! - No strangers to 'gorgeous', the band released a performance video of this track from their new record, scheduled for a March 7th release. (TBB coverage)

LOOMER "Ceiling" (Bon Voyage), from Ceiling - My current infatuation is this quartet from Brisbane, Australia. Status: on repeat. (TBB coverage)

NO JOY "Still" (Mexican Summer), from Ghost Blonde - Kind of a lo-fi, grungier version of Warpaint, their profile's about ready to shoot up as the opener for the Best Coast / Wavves tour that starts later this month.

[DOWNLOAD] AUTRE NE VEUT - "Soldier" (Olde English Spelling Bee), from Autre Ne Veut - This recently crossed my radar, the work of a one-man band from New York City who delivers an offbeat mix of avant-pop and old-style R&B. (via Seattle In High Def)

CHARLES BRADLEY "No Time For Dreaming" (Daptone), from No Time For Dreaming - Bradley's story resembles that of labelmate Sharon Jones: a bonafide soul singer who toiled in obscurity until receiving a late in life opportunity. Now 62, the Florida-born, Brooklyn-raised Bradley is ready for his closeup. His voice drips of authentic sincerity. The Daptone label has built their roster carefully, emphasizing quality over quantity. Bradley's record is no different.

BOUND STEMS "Andover" (Flameshovel), from Appreciation Night - My recent post about 2006 has led me to revisit my favorite record of that year. I remain firmly convinced that this is a great record, and it's just a shame they didn't receive the appreciation so richly deserved. (TBB coverage)

[DOWNLOAD] MAGAZINE "Shot By Both Sides" (Virgin), from Real Life - Released in 1978, this classic single still sounds fresh and exciting. (via Popdose)

SHAPES HAVE FANGS "The Desert [Has A Place For You]" (self-released), from Dinner In The Dark - This Austin band's been around for a few years, and they just unveiled their latest on a self-released cassette, available at select local record stores. There's a bit of everything packed in this tune, with elements of 60's era British Invasion AM radio fare (singer Dustin Coffey rates The Kinks as an influence), Detroit garage rock, and slacker blues reminiscent of fellow Austinites The Strange Boys. Here's hoping the new year brings wider distribution. (Austin: @ Emo's tomorrow night [outside - Free Week])

BRAIDS "Lemonade" (Kanine), from Native Speaker - I can't stop revisiting this tune, so have another go at one of the prettiest songs of the past few months. They hit the road solo later this month before hooking up with Baths and Star Slinger (below) for about two weeks worth of dates. (Austin: Feb. 5th @ Emo's [inside])

[STREAM] BRAIDS - "Lemonade"

STAR SLINGER "Remedy" (Double Denim), single - Darren Williams has forged his name over the past year remixing Deerhunter and Small Black, and has been approached by Broken Social Scene, The Morning Benders, and The Go! Team. A mix tape called Volume 1 was released last summer. "Remedy" is a new single dropping in February, just in time for his first US tour. He should be interesting in a live setting. (Austin: Feb. 5th w/ Baths & Braids @ Emo's [inside])

[STREAM] Star Slinger - "Remedy"

JAMIE WOON "Night Air" (Polydor), from Mirrorwriting - At the opposite end of the playlist from James Blake, both seem to have a reasonable shot of taking their minimalistic take on the dubstep genre - now tagged as 'microstep' - to a wider audience. Granted, Woon seems a bit MOR but has more of a chilled, trip-hop vibe than Blake's near Antony-like gospel spin. I think both men will find an audience. (TBB coverage)

Monday, January 3, 2011

Loomer - Hitting the Ceiling from Down Under


I didn't post a formal list of top CD's as I have in the past but if I did, it would include the records from Tame Impala, Glasser, Deerhunter, Massive Attack, Secret Knives, Weekend, Foals and one that slipped under the wire, Loomer.

From Brisbane, Australia, the quartet named themselves after the My Bloody Valentine song and after a listen to their debut full-length Ceiling, they leave no doubt as to the influence of Loveless to their sound.

As their label's (Bon Voyage) website says, "Drawing upon the collective approaches and musical output of bands like The Dead C, Wire, Sonic Youth and My Bloody Valentine, Loomer bring together elements of harsh volume, and wall-of-noise guitars with understated ethereal vocals, to create an artfully intense exploration into new grounds in song form and harmonic density." Listen closer, though, and you'll hear traces of No Wave-influenced noise bands like Live Skull and Teenage Jesus & The Jerks. (97X aficionados could classify this as prime Gridloxx material.)

All in all, this is exciting stuff. I've had Ceiling on repeat for the past two weeks. Supposedly, Bon Voyage only pressed a limited number of discs and will ship orders worldwide for 15 AUD (presently 15.21 USD - bargain for you). Give a listen, show your support.