Ryan Adams has grown up a bit. Well, actually, a lot. Maybe married life is treating him well. Either way, he’s gone from a guy who couldn’t take a “Summer of ’69!” shout out from the audience to a guy who takes weird crowd interruptions and turns them into improvised songs. Adams was notorious for storming off stage and pouting when an old Bryan Adams song title was thrown at him by some drunken hooligan. However, the other night at the Noel Gallagher curated Teenage Cancer Trust benefit in London, Adams misheard an audience heckle as “loaf of bread,” and he just up and wrote a song on the spot and performed it with a full band. Very impressive. [via Stereogum]
I’m coming around on this new Foals record, Holy Fire. The last one took me a long time to get into as well. It’s hard to get past my expectations for a particular style from them. Their debut, Antitdotes, was my favorite record of 2008. Both successive albums have veered off course from that astounding debut, leaning towards a more produced, cultivated, and commercial sound. While I miss frontman Yannis Philippakis’ yelps and the frantic Battles-esque guitar interplay, the darker, more subdued direction is working, albeit painstakingly. It’s just a slower burn. And speaking of dark, this video is crazily dark and violent.
Duran Duran keyboardist and ex-guitarist Warren Cuccurullo began a side-project in the mid-1990′s while working on a Duran Duran album (the underrated and sadly much-maligned Medazzaland). Vocalist Simon Le Bon had lyrical writer’s block, so Rhodes and Cuccurullo started tinkering in the studio by themselves. They produced a mish-mash of samples and beats entitled Bored with Prozac and the Internet?, which was shelved once Le Bon was back in action. Having dusted off the tapes recently, Rhodes decided it sounded fairly current, despite the time delay. So, while Duran Duran is on break, he and Cuccurullo have decided to release the album as TV Mania, which was the name they used as producers back in the 90′s. The album is available as a super limited deluxe edition from The Vinyl Factory. “Euphoria” is the first video, and it was directed by Jean Renard and Dutch Rall, replete with the requisite hot model and artsy vamping from Rhodes and Cuccurullo. [via Paper]
Long-dormant Stephin Merritt disco-themed side-project has follow-up LP in the pipeline for Merge Records, and this is the first taste. Future Bible Heroes also features Christopher Ewen from Figures on a Beach and The Magnetic Fields’ own Claudia Gonson.
Here are the specs on the release from Merge:
Partygoing is available on vinyl in a 3-LP collection containing Memories of Love (1997), Eternal Youth (2002), and three EPs. The collection is also available in a 4-CD set.
Preorders will include a poster and will ship to arrive on or around the release date of June 4.
A friend of mine My friend Pat Wall just messaged me asking if I’d heard Savages yet. I had heard the single “Husbands” the other day on Sirius XMU and almost had to pull over. Savages is an all-female quartet from London, channeling Siouxsie, The Slits, some no wave, and the requisite amount of Joy Division for a bracing, jarring stripe of post-punk that no one else is playing right now. My friend said the band was heavily buzzed last week at SXSW and with good reason. Just watch this video. The debut full-length, Silence Yourself, is being released in May via Matador here in the states. My new favorite band.
[via The Guardian]
Even with the band’s own blasé dismissal of 2011′s Angels, I was just glad there was new music from The Strokes. It certainly wasn’t their best record, but it was better than First Impressions of Earth. And I never could quite get into Julian Casablancas’ solo stuff. Come Down Machine is gearing up to be the comeback record Angels was supposed to be. This second taste is even catchier than “One Way Trigger,” and the video shows a band that actually might be able to stand the sight of one another.
Every time I hear this band on Sirius XMU I reflexively look to see who’s playing and turn it up. Must be a good sign. This is the first single from the Glaswegian trio’s forthcoming debut LP.
Latter day Replacements guitarist Slim Dunlap (who replaced original guitarist Bob Stinson in 1987) had a severe stroke a few months back, wreaking havoc on his finances, despite having insurance. So, core Replacements founders Paul Westerberg and Tommy Stinson decided to raise some cash for their old bandmate to soften the blow. A supremely limited edition 10″ of 250 copies made up of newly recorded covers was auctioned off, raising over $105,000. The music is available to the general public today via Amazon MP3, as well as all of the streaming services. With just a cursory listen it’s hard to tell at first that this is The Replacements, but after a few songs the familiarity of Westerberg’s voice makes it hard to deny.
Never one to disappoint in a live setting, Prince tore it up on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon last Friday night to showcase his new, all-female backing band 3rd Eye Girl and his new single “Screwdriver.” He also played the ultra-deep cut “Bambi” off his second, self-titled LP from 1979. Jimmy Fallon announced a forthcoming tour for Prince to begin on the West Coast in April, although these are the only dates I could verify. [via Stereogum]
The Original Soundtrack from the Ryan Gosling film Drive is being re-released on a special gatefold, double-LP set with new artwork by poster artist Tyler Stout (above) on black vinyl. Random copies will be pressed on hot pink vinyl, however. I never win that lottery, so I expect my copy to be black. But I’m excited, nonetheless, because the music is what pushed this film from great to bad ass for me. The OST features a score by composer Cliff Martinez, as well as unshakably memorable songs by Kavinsky, Chromatics, and College. This reissue is available for purchase via Austin’s Mondo Gallery on March 22, 2013. None of the streaming sites carry this soundtrack, so your options are limited. [via Pitchfork]
Still having trouble getting past that name but digging the record so far. And Thom Yorke’s smooth moves. It’s a good thing that guy can sing.
In Record Store Day News via Slicing Up Eyeballs:
Echo & The Bunnymen’s 1980 debut album Crocodiles will be reissued for Record Store Day in a new 180-gram audiophile pressing on red vinyl by reissue specialist Vinyl 180, the label announced in an e-mail newsletter this week. No further details have been revealed, and it’s not yet known whether it will be a U.K.-only release or also put out in the U.S.
Surely to God, there will be a U.S. version, right? I’m not getting up early and standing in line for nothing. Although, my list is growing out of control. Methinks labels are starting to take advantage of this whole “Record Store Day” business.
When the sound board recording of Survival Knife’s first show appeared last March, forums and blogs exploded with links and opinions about Unwound’s Justin Trosper’s return to music. And I was one of them, scrambling for my copy like a giddy schoolkid. The band consists of two of Unwound’s original members, drummer Brandt Sandeno and, of course, guitarist/vocalist Trosper. Sandeno has switched to guitar but Trosper’s style is hard to disguise, even with a new rhythm section backing him. This is a good thing. Survival Knife may eschew some of Unwound’s noisier tangents, but the riffs are unmistakably driving and Trosper’s growling yelp is in fine form. The band’s first 7″ is being released by Sub Pop on March 5, 2013 with (hopefully) a full length to follow. [via Pitchfork]
This snippet from a quick Guardian review of the new Foals album exactly sums up my feelings on it after three listens: “Foals find themselves on their third album, trying to sound big rather than clever.” Yes, exactly. Too bad.
Best concert cancellation excuse ever.
I am terribly sorry that the next three shows have been moved back. The worst is for the best. I am certainly on the road to recovery, but caution and prevention demand further IV blood work lest I keel over and die before your very eyes. I apologize to an almost annoying degree for any trouble I’ve caused to anyone by way of travel plans and dog-sitters and ticket-outlay and re-molded hairstyles. I should be as fit as a ferret for San Diego. Please don’t be too appalled if you see me out and about this week in the Hollywood area. Perversely, it’s all in accordance with doctor’s orders: to have myself re-integrated with the call of the greasepaint and the smell of the crowd; the flash of light and the full thrust of mosh-pit sound. Illness turns the body into a complete stranger, and I’ll be testing the capabilities of my strides at the most unlikely music shows this week. The will to get on with it runs strong. Even death can be used as a springboard. For those scholars who are heatedly curious, my ulcer is now under reins, even if neither asleep nor dead, but the continued cause for concern is a slightly embarrassing absence of blood – most of which the bleeding ulcer relieved me of. Anemia sets its own terms with quite obvious biological conclusions, and I have spent these last weeks under expert medical care in Los Angeles with an almost erotic dependency on various IV drips. Sitting around reading indecent books is no substitute for continuing the tour, but my progress holds great promise and Flint shall not escape quite so lightly. We are all at the mercy of biological chance, and I once again beg for your liberal tolerance. If you bump into me this week at a heavy rock show, please understand that I’m lowering myself into the cut and thrust after weeks on ice – horizontal, with sockets empty of eyes. In the midst of the abyss, I’m saved by the news that tickets for the tour continue to sell very well, and my straightjacket twitches with excited gratitude. But the patient must be patient. Our goal, now, is San Diego, by which time my blood-work shall have finally taken its course and I shall be shot from a cannon and might even be equipped with an extra eye. We just never know, do we? Being on life’s danger list, I’ve found, actually prevents you from thinking about how you are, and there’s a bread-like warmth in giving in to whatever was meant for you and whatever wasn’t. The only critical mistake might be to confuse your pre-med with creativity – which is certainly worth the confusion if it renders you not fully present in your own life. Finally, I gorge myself on thanks for the many and varied messages of support that I’ve received over these recent four weeks. They have yanked me out of prolonged mood dips and cured a crisis of spirits. I fully realize that the word ‘cancellation’ in every known dictionary is followed by my own name, but no morale drops as low as my own at the mere suggestion of re-jigging shows. I sincerely ask for your pardon and your understanding. As for those of you who claim to now be officially sick to death of me – if this is really true, then why exactly are you reading this? As a matter of fact, I am even prepared to humble myself to nothing before those who carp; you see, any hospital-stay leaves us in danger of becoming unnecessarily agreeable. Life will right itself.
Whatever happens, I love you.
With his first album in a decade not out until March 12, 2013, David Bowie is already announcing his second single, “The Stars (Are Out Tonight),” which will precede the highly anticipated album, The Next Day, by two weeks. His first single, “Where Are We now?,” which sneaked up on the press without warning on Bowie’s birthday, January 8th, kicked off unprecedented buzz for new material from the long-dormant star. His past two albums were met with respectful yet uneventful press. The references in the first single to his time in Berlin have many fans hoping the new material in some way harkens back to what many consider his peak artistic period. [via The Guardian]
The Next Day tracklist:
01. The Next Day
02. Dirty Boys
03. The Stars (Are Out Tonight)
04. Love Is Lost
05. Where Are We Now?
06. Valentine’s Day
07. If You Can See Me
08. I’d Rather Be High
09. Boss of Me
10. Dancing Out in Space
11. How Does the Grass Grow
12. (You Will) Set the World on Fire
13. You Feel So Lonely You Could Die
15. So She (bonus track)
16. I’ll Take You There (bonus track)
17. Plan (bonus track)
Poltergeist, an instrumental trio that reunites Echo & the Bunnymen’s guitarist Will Sergeant and bassist Les Pattison, is streaming its new song “Cathedral” over at SoundCloud via Slicing Up Eyeballs. The collaboration is underway via Pledge Music. I can’t help but be turned off by all these Kickstarter-type fundraisers. It comes off as begging to me. Isn’t it about supply and demand? If you don’t fit into the music business paradigm, do it yourself. Put out your own records. Play shows and raise money. If you suck, people will let you know, either by telling you or by not coming out to shows. I understand bands not wanting to – or not being able to – put up the funds to make the records to their standards or even at all, but doesn’t that mean maybe they shouldn’t be made, especially if no one else is knocking down the door to do it for them? Promising autographs and liner credits and all sorts of other zany things just to get a record made seems sad and desperate to me. A lot of “career” musicians whose careers have admittedly waned have been resorting to this sort of behavior simply out of survival because music is the only thing they know how to do. And maybe a Kickstarter is the only way for them to get a record made. So be it. But I much prefer the not begging way. More importantly, though, how much does Les Pattison hate Ian McCulloch not to be involved in any of Echo & the Bunnymen’s current activities?