Friday, January 21, 2011

band of the week: Smith Westerns

When was the last time a good indie band came out of Chicago? The lo-fi scene in particular has been dominated by kids from Brooklyn, LA, San Francisco and San Diego. But Smith Westerns are ready to change that once and for all, and radically alter your perception of what trippy lo-fi music can be. Going beyond MGMT in terms of psychedelia, Smith Westerns are like a more upbeat, Beatles-inspired Girls minus the Elvis Costello vox and rigidly melancholy stance. Fuzzy, skuzzy and carefree, the songs balance Kinks guitars with simply delightful keys revive the 60’s in all of its glory. Not yet old enough to drink legally, these boys really know what they're doing. Listen below and head out to a show!

Smith Westerns - Weekend [mp3, highly recommended!]

Smith Westerns - Dance Away [mp3]
from Dye it Blonde, their second LP which was released on Tuesday

Fri-Jan 28: Nashville, TN - The End*
Sat-Jan 29: Knoxville, TN - Pilot Light*
Sun-Jan 30: Chapel Hill, NC - Local 506*
Mon-Jan 31: Athens, GA - 40 Watt Club*
Tue-Feb 1: Atlanta, GA - Drunken Unicorn*
Thu-Feb 3: Orlando, FL - Backbooth*
Fri-Feb 4: Tallahassee, FL - Club Downunder*
Sun-Feb 6: Houston, TX - Fitzgeralds*
Mon-Feb 7: Austin, TX - Emos*
Tue-Feb 8: Dallas, TX - The Loft*
Thu-Feb 10: Phoenix, AZ - Rhythm Room*
Fri-Feb 11: Los Angeles, CA - Echo*
Sat-Feb 12: Costa Mesa, CA - Detroit Bar*
Sun-Feb 13: San Francisco, CA - Bottom of the Hill*

(they're also playing a free instore show at Amoeba SF on the 14th)
Tue-Feb 15: Portland, OR - Doug Fir Lounge
Wed-Feb 16: Vancouver, BC - Biltmore Cabaret
Thu-Feb 17: Seattle, WA - Crocodile Cafe
Fri-Feb 18: Boise, ID - Neurolux
Sat-Feb 19: Salt Lake City, UT - Kilby Court
Mon-Feb 21: Denver, CO - Larimer Lounge
Tue-Feb 22: Kansas City, MO - The Record Bar
Wed-Feb 23: Omaha, NE - Waiting Room
Thu-Feb 24: Minneapolis, MN - Triple Rock Social Club
Fri-Feb 25: Madison, WI - The Frequency
Sat-Feb 26: Chicago, IL - Empty Bottle
Mon-Feb 28: Toronto, ON - Legendary Horseshoe Tavern
Tue-Mar 1: Montreal, PQ - La Sala Rossa
Wed-Mar 2: Boston, MA - Great Scott
Fri-Mar 4: Washington, DC - Rock and Roll Hotel
^ = w/ MGMT
* = w/ Yuck

Smith Westerns on MYSPACE

The Strokes Post #607

record review: Cage the Elephant - Thank You Happy Birthday

“taste of blood/broken dreams/lonely times indeed/eyes cast down”

Thank You Happy Birthday is Cage the Elephant’s second album, and it heralds two things above all else: unironic, Cobain-esque self-loathing and PixiesPixiesPixies basslines/anger. “Indy Kidz” is menacing and self critical, spinning a fuzzy, surfer tornado prelude to “Shake Me Down”, a hesitantly hopeful (and ever so endearing) song lost among explosive songs predicting the apocalypse and lamenting the inevitable stings of mainstream success. The 90’s alt-rock influences are abundant, most strongly manifested in the merciless self-disparagement which Matt Shultz uses to reflect his band’s artistic cred (or what’s left of it). Like Nirvana’s tortured frontman before him, Shultz contemplates how fame, radio play and commercial endorsements have blighted his band’s vision. No longer is there a distinct “us vs them”, and that is scary as hell to the Kentucky band that started out with such an undeniably fearless stance. The songs ricochet back and forth from seizure-inducing to Jimmy Eat World tender, but Cage the Elephant resonate best as they rock the living daylights out of your ears and any amps. Nothing’s sacred, and nothing is spared.

the album was released last week, buy it HERE

Classic Track Thursday

this song has been stuck in my head all day:

Herbert Stothart & Harold Arlen - If Only I Had a Brain [mp3]
from The Wizard of Oz (1939)

I know I'm a badass and all, but at the end of the day, I am a school teacher.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

The Strokes Post #606

this song makes me want to do shots and dance

also, I've been obsessed with Julian C's voice on "Alone, Together"

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

ex-Voxtrot frontman releases "The King"

Voxtrot loved The Smiths. maybe Ramesh will have a solo career as prolific as Morrissey's? decide for yourself:

Free Energy: new tour dates (with the Postelles)

catch them for the last time before they head back to studio to record their second lp!

January/February 2011 Tour Dates:
01/20/11 Chicago, IL @ Double Door * - BUY TICKETS
01/21/11 Minneapolis, MN @ First Avenue - 89.3 The Current Party - SOLD OUT
01/22/11 Fargo, ND Winter Carnival 2011/ Fargo Theater * - BUY TICKETS
01/25/11 Seattle, WA @ The Crocodile * - BUY TICKETS
01/26/11 Portland, OR @ Doug Fir Lounge * - BUY TICKETS
01/27/11 San Francisco, CA @ The Independent * - BUY TICKETS
01/28/11 West Hollywood, CA @ The Roxy Theatre * - BUY TICKETS
01/29/11 La Jolla, CA @ The Loft / UC San Diego * - BUY TICKETS
01/30/11 Tucson, AZ @ Club Congress * - BUY TICKETS
02/01/11 Dallas, TX @ The Loft * - BUY TICKETS
02/02/11 Austin, TX @ Emo's * - BUY TICKETS
02/04/11 Baton Rouge, LA @ Spanish Moon * - BUY TICKETS
02/05/11 Tallahassee, FL @ Club Downunder *
02/07/11 Orlando, FL @ The Social * - BUY TICKETS
02/08/11 Gainesville, FL @ Common Grounds * - BUY TICKETS
02/09/11 Atlanta, GA @ The Earl * - BUY TICKETS
02/10/11 Norfolk, VA @ Jewish Mother Backstage * - BUY TICKETS
02/18/11 Philadelphia, PA @ First Unitarian Church * - BUY TICKETS
* w/ The Postelles

COACHELLA 2011!!!!!

The Strokes Post #605

"Angles is the best album the Strokes have made since Is This It because of the stylistic depth and progressive excitement in those crisscross guitars, the tightly wound rhythms and Casablancas' dry trademark croon."

I've known for a long time that Strokes IV will sound unlike your run of the mill conventional alternative rock album, not just because it's the Strokes, but because they've all been exploring a ton of new musical territory as of late. and the word "progressive" is the best one I would use to describe what I imagine it'll sound like. King Crimson through the lens of Joy Division?

anyways, RS has a brand spanking new exclusive about the album (called Angles)

"The Strokes will tour this year — within reason, Hammond claims: "We want to come back strong but slowly, so we can grow live and also make new music. We want to release albums quicker."

"I don't want to make an album every five years," Valensi insists. "I love being in this band, and I want it to be a career thing. It's so worth it — for all of us."