Friday, August 20, 2010

Ben Sollee Announces Tumblr for Bike Tour

follow his "Ditch the Van" tour HERE

Aug 20 - Long Beach, CA - {Open} ,- that's the name of the space, not "open date"
Aug 21 - Los Angeles, CA - Bootleg Theater
Aug 22 - Santa Monica, CA - Santa Monica Museum of Art
Aug 24 - Santa Barbara, CA - SoHo
Aug 25 - Salinas, CA - The Steinbeck Center
Aug 26 - Santa Cruz, CA - The Crepe Place
Aug 28 - San Francisco, CA - Rickshaw Warehouse
Sept 04 - Ft. Collins, CO - Tour De Fat
Sept 05 - Denver CO - The Oriental
Sept 08 - Baltimore MD - 2640
Sept 09 - Havre De Grace MD - Biller's Bikes
Sept 10 - Havre De Grace MD - Biller's Bikes
Sept 12 - Philadelphia, PA - Bike Philly
Sept 12 - Philadelphia, PA - Johnny Brenda's
Sept 15 - Doylestown, PA - Puck Live
Sept 16 - Bethlehem, PA - Wild Flower Cafe
Sept 18 - Kempton, PA - Renewable Energy & Sustainable Living Fest
Sept 20 - Lancaster PA - Fair Trade Cafe @ FMU
Sept 21 - York, PA - The Depot
Sept 23 - Frederick, MD - Cafe Nola
Sept 24 - Bethesda, MD - Mansion at Strathmore
Sept 25 - Washington, DC - Edmund Burke School
Oct 07 - Richmond, KY - Eastern Kentucky University
Oct 08 - Frankfort KY - The Grand Theatre

new video - Antony and The Johnsons - Thank You For Your Love

the forthcoming LP Swanlights will be released on October 12.

preorder HERE

The Strokes Post #539

current favourite Strokes song:

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Classic Track Thursday

you know that Cold War Kids lyric?
"I give a check to tax deductible charity organizations"
that's a tribute to Dylan. to this song specifically.

Bob Dylan - Ballad of a Thin Man [mp3]
from Highway 61 Revisited (1965), and probably my favourite LP by Bobby

I have an explosive cover of it that I'll post on Sunday. stay tuned!

film review: Mogwai - Burning (+ screening dates!)

It takes a special brand of musician to release a live album. Mogwai not only meet all of the standards necessary, but pour forth their guitar heavy brand of post rock from the very beginning of the film. No introduction, no credits; they let the music speak for itself.

And it does.

With levels of blissful distortion unparalleled this side of White Light, White Heat, the viewer gets their first “break” from the music 16 minutes into Burning. Aptly titled, the film and accompanying live album, Special Moves, document the band’s stirring 2009 live performance in Brooklyn. The live film is the band’s first and was directed by Vincent Moon and Nathanael Le Scouarnac, the same brilliant minds behind La Blogotheque’s Take Away Shows. It’s a haunting spectacle—not solely because of the ethereal yet turbulent music which refuses to be contained by the venue itself—or the ominous black and white aesthetic, but also because of the delicate interplay of the Scottish band’s traverse in the hardy city, followed by their explosive feeds into the amps on stage. The camera’s constant fluctuation between the streets of Williamsburg and the concert stage results in a dazzling accentuation of everything, from the graffiti to the blinding lights on stage. It’s comforting to be reminded that even though bands like Mogwai often go without widespread fame or fortune, their fellow artistic innovators can be counted on to hold a candle recognizing their achievements.

Burning drops on 24 August, buy it HERE

Mogwai - New Paths to Helicon Pt. 1 [mp3]

The film will be screening at San Francisco’s Roxie Theatre on Saturday 4 September at 11PM. tickets are $10 and can be purchased HERE.

not in SF? here's a complete list of cities screening the film

08/21 ORLANDO, FL Park Ave CDs

08/23 SEATTLE, WA Northwest Film Forum

08/23 DALLAS, TX Good Records

08/24 BROOKLYN, NY Music Hall of Williamsburg

08/24 VANCOUVER, BC Pacific Cinematheque

08/26 CAMBRIDGE, MA Brattle Theater

08/28 LONG BEACH, CA Art Theater of Long Beach

08/29 CHICAGO, IL Smart Bar

09/02 PONTIAC, MI The Crofoot

09/04 SAN FRANCISCO, CA Roxie Theater

09/10 PORTLAND, OR Bagdad Theater

09/10 NEW YORK, NY Metropolitan Museum of Art

09/12 LOS ANGELES, CA Echoplex

09/14 TORONTO, ON The Underground - The Drake Hotel (10:30pm)

09/14 TORONTO, ON The Underground - The Drake Hotel (11:55pm)

09/23 DENVER, CO Bluebird Theater

10/03 MONTREAL, QC Ukranian Federation

new video: Arcade Fire - Ready to Start


Free Energy to play SJ's Blank Club in October

Saturday, Oct 30, 2010 (9:00 doors)
Blank Club, San Jose, CA
21 years and over

tickets are eight bucks, buy em HERE

Free Energy - Dark Trance (daytrotter) [mp3]

The Strokes Post #538

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Rock Make Festival this Sunday

a bunch of local artists, including: Tartufi, AB & the Sea, Still Flyin, Leopold and his Fiction, Social Studies, Butterfly Bones, The California Honeydrops, Sunbeam Rd, Sea of Beas, Jhameel, Billy & Dolly, The SHE's, The Thrashers, The Psychotherapists, Wizard Lizard, The Romane Event

Arcade Fire are coming to Berkeley's Greek (presale tomorrow!)

presale: Thursday, August 19th at 10am - Saturday, August 21st at 11:59pm
buy tix HERE
password: suburbs

Arcade Fire - (Antichrist Television Blues) [mp3]

The Strokes Post #537

some great Outside Lands photos via HAD

photos by Rick Audet

new song: The National - You Were a Kindness

The National - You Were a Kindness [mp3]
why are they so brutal? I think I have a codependent relationship with Matt Beringer, who is abusive to the core.

video: Delta Spirit - Bushwick Blues

jeeeeeeeeeesus I miss DS.

Delta Spirit - Bushwick Blues (acoustic, live, KCRW) [mp3]

Delta Spirit- White Table (alternate version) [mp3]

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

review & photos: Outside Lands: Day 2

15 August 2010 (Sunday)
San Francisco, CA
(day 1 reviewed HERE)

The Devil Makes Three
Wow, these guys sure could get a California crowd square dancing. I hadn’t seen the likes of this since the third grade and learning about the Oregon Trail. With a rose painted on an acoustic guitar, could you expect anything short of heartfelt Americana? The Santa Cruz band is a simple three piece, and their delivery is basic while simultaneously accentuating their strengths. They really hit home with “Help Yourself”, as Pete Bernhard sang with lighthearted exuberance: “I done some bad things but I like to have my fun.”

Edward Sharpe & the Magnetic Zeros
With an abundance of Near Eastern clothing and an aesthetic that could only be described as psychedelically inspired, lead singer Alex Ebert was espousing George Harrison vibes like no other. Before the first song even commenced, Ebert jumped down in a sprightly manner and dove right into the crowd. When he finally made it back to the stage, he was dancing as if he were trying to shake bugs off of his legs. Never ceasing to monkey around, he and female counterpart Jade Castrinos (who, for the record, had some impressive pipes) tried to summon the sun to the dreary San Francisco sky. The duo were grinning, harmonizing, and radiated an infectiously giddy energy. The band brings to mind 50’s style rockability, as the communal dancing, singing and frolic gave way to American Bandstand type submission to primal instincts. Whereas the music is not inherently spectacular, what makes ED&tMZ an act that is hard to forget is their matchless delivery. Ebert’s vocal style seemed to be inspired by the likes of James Brown. Edward Sharpe & the Magnetic Zeros is composed of eleven members who inspire, rather than awe. The only worries I have for this band come in terms of longevity: how long can this remain fresh?

Al Green
Covering the Temptations and howling delightfully on the main Lands End stage, Al Green and his fantastic backing band proved that soul, more than any other genre, is timeless. He slyly interjected that he was singing all of these love songs with no hopes of getting a special lady and therefore encouraged the crowd to grab a hold of a lover. The horns soared, Al danced and absolutely everyone in the audience had a grin on their face.

Oh, Phoenix. Why must you embody everything I love about indie rock, from the constant obsession with perfection in tone to the unshakable humbleness of leading man Thomas Mars? I don’t think our French boys could deliver a disappointing set if they tried, they are just programmed for excellence. The highlights of the set included the strange, decelerated version of “Rally” and the explosive closer, “1901”, complete with Thomas Mars crowd surfing during the reprise. During the set, Mars seemed to be overflowing with nervous energy and climbed atop everything including the speakers to his right. Edward Sharpe may have showmanship, but Phoenix have staying power. Their music has so much substance, and their impeccable sets will surely be relayed by fans to generations of forthcoming grandchildren.

Social Distortion
One of the few disappointments of the weekend, Social D were diametrically opposed to The Strokes: although the California punk outfit have a new album coming out in November, their set left me thinking “why do these guys even bother?” They were desperately trying to cling onto the times of past, but failing utterly, down to the tastelessly over-propped stage. They rendered a mediocre version of the Cash classic “Ring of Fire” and even failed to strike a chord with “Ball and Chain”. Unfortunately, some bands should only be reachable through well-worn records and trips down memory lane, not in the live concert setting.

Kings of Leon
The band opened up with “Closer”, and I almost thought that they had replaced their bass player, because Jared looks a hell of a lot older than what I remembered. From the first few moments, seeing Nathan pound away made my heart ache for Kings of Leon, whom I had forsaken because of how far they’ve strayed from their badass origins. I had originally planned on watching their whole set, but after hearing them butcher “My Party” (which is a relatively new song, pretty detached from their first two albums), I couldn’t stick around. How they managed to water down a track from Because of the Times, I don’t know. It’s so unfortunate to see such a talented band piss away their potential by delivering half-assed, mom-approved rock, but what pained me the most was seeing Nathan—the lone remaining good element of the band—drumming in the background as if nothing had changed. They aren’t trying to go back to their roots at all, they’re milking this corporate bullshit for all its worth. I, for one, refuse to be a part of this nonsense.