I was giddy as a schoolkid this morning when I saw news of The Replacements rehearsing “Alex Chilton” off the band’s fifth LP, Pleased to Meet Me. No word yet on who’s playing guitar or drums with Paul Westerberg and Tommy Stinson at their upcoming Riot Fest appearances in August and September. Word is they didn’t even bother asking Chris Mars to play drums because they knew he’d say no. Oh well. Who cares? This sounds great. As long as Tommy and Paul are on board, it sounds like The Replacements to me. They were such a barely strung together ramshackle anyway. The haphazardness of all of this suits.
I feared something fishy was up when the Pixies announced Kim Deal’s departure so … politely. It’s been common knowledge that they wanted to record a new record and Deal was the sole hold-out. I actually don’t care whether this new song is good or not. (And for the record, it’s ok). It just seems silly to try to continue without an integral part of what made the Pixies so beloved. Kim Deal’s simple but memorable bass lines helped define the Pixies’ sound. And her vocal integration with Black Francis’ insanity sent chills down my spine more often than not. So, for the Pixies to continue without Kim is more than just a bummer. It’s a disappointment.
Also when you’ve been in a relationship for a really long time and that comes to an end … you know, so my identity was so tied up with Sonic Youth and my relationship and my marriage and so now it’s also like, who am I? It’s a little bit of, like, going back to the beginning. I mean, I basically feel like I’ve been the same person since I was little, but you know, it does make you really kind of search for who you really are.
Gordon has just completed an album with Bill Nace for a project called Body/Head. Matador Records will release the experimental guitar album on September 10th. Gordon is also at work on her memoirs.
It’s mind-boggling to me that The Dismemberment Plan‘s final album, Change, came out 12 years ago. I used to be able to mark years by what music came out. I lost that talent about a decade ago. Records don’t represent years anymore. Maybe that’s just what happens as you get older. But I still associate Change with 2001. The D-Plan started back in 1993 in Washington DC and broke up ten years later. Reunion shows for charity and the re-release of its masterpiece Emergency & I sparked not only renewed interest in the band but also actual excitement. The band obviously sensed it too and is moving forward with a new album. Uncanney Valley will be released in September on Partison records. Pitchfork revealed the track list today:
01 No One’s Saying Nothing
04 White Collar White Trash
05 Living in Song
07 Daddy Was a Real Good Dancer
08 Mexico City Christmas
09 Go and Get It
10 Let’s Just Go to the Dogs Tonight
The guys debuted a few new songs that will be on the record last summer, one of which is captured here:
Alan Myers, Devo’s “human metronome,” has died of cancer. Myers played with Devo for ten years from 1976 to 1986, leaving after the band’s Shout album over creative differences. Slicing Up Eyeballs has the details. Former Devo band mate Gerald V. Casale has paid tribute on Twitter.
Though not as aggressive as the clanging, reverb-drenched racket of its debut, Gauntlet Hair returns with more cryptic post-goth. The duo’s sophomore LP, entitled Stills, is out July 16 via Dead Oceans. Despite being produced by Jacobo Portrait from Unknown Mortal Orchestra, it actually doesn’t sound like shit. [via Stereogum]
This band has been beaten into my brain via Sirius XMU, and it’s a good thing I like it because I’d have been forced to find a new station by now. Despite the overexposure, this song is still catchy as hell. CHVRCHES debut LP The Bones of What You Believe will be out in September on Glassnote. Lauren Mayberry’s voice sounds just as adorably infectious live as it does on record.
And just like that a new single appears. Arctic Monkeys have thrown a brand new single up on iTunes today. It definitely stays true to Queens of the Stone Age influence that has coursed through the last few records. And it’s certainly an odd choice for a single, ignoring the upbeat aggression of its early sound in favor of a slow, psychedelic burn. Alex Turner sounds even more cocksure than usual over a sleazy, sexy riff.
This YouTube comment sums it up nicely: “I am both in awe of her and utterly terrified of her when she performs.”
Her new album Once I was an Eagle is staggeringly good and easily one of the year’s best.
This has been out a few weeks, but, if you haven’t seen it, you’re missing out. First of all, the new Queens of the Stone Age album is so, so good and on constant repeat on all my devices that play music. “I Sat by the Ocean” would be the song of the summer in a better world. It’s a hard slap to the face to hear a band unafraid to rock like this. Frontman Josh Homme goes heavy on the Bowie throughout the album, but it’s an overall blistering tour de force with Dave Grohl back on drums. This animated short-feature links several songs, including the entire video for the single, “My God Is the Sun,” and it’s a nightmarish interpretation of what Homme has described as a “manic year.” Visuals by Boneface and animator Liam Brazier.
In related news, the gatefold vinyl release is a thing of beauty, and there’s a special edition released only in local record stores, featuring blue artwork. It comes with a scratch off lottery ticket with a download code that I can’t bring myself to scratch to save my life.
Arctic Monkeys debuted some new music at the Northside Festival in Denmark a few days ago. It’s fan-footage, but the sound is remarkably clear. “Mad Sounds” is a slow-burner with a heavy Velvet Underground influence. Ever since the band discovered Josh Homme and the American desert it has seemed to lose momentum state-side for some reason. I’m still on board with the game-plan, though; Alex Turner can do no wrong in my world. [via The Awl]
The band’s music may be more streamlined and accessible than ever, but its videos are not quite so linear. This is one way to make headlines out of a par album.
Kanye West’s narcissism knows no bounds, but his marriage of pop culture over-saturation with Bret Easton Ellis’ novel is, admittedly, an intriguing way to promote an album. [via Kanye West]
Siouxsie Sioux returned from a five-year live hiatus with two nights at the Yoko Ono-curated Meltdown Festival in London this past weekend. She played her legendary former band’s album Kaleidoscope in its entirety with a few other fan favorites sprinkled in. Even though the Banshees’ classic “Spellbound” was on the set list to close the first night, Siouxsie didn’t play it. Thankfully, it made the second night’s set. Siouxsie looks and sounds amazing. [via Slicing Up Eyeballs]
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]