Saturday, May 31, 2008

Of Submarines and Headlights @ Mercury Lounge

Submarines; Headlights
@ Mercury Lounge
New York, NY - May 30, 2008

There is some debate, including among the bands themselves, as to whether the definite article belong at the helm of each band's name, so we're just going to skip it.
Submarines are shiny pop from Los Angeles (look at the City of Angels making a comeback) and though they mean to recall 60's flowers and sunshine and something between mods and hippies, there is a slick, city of shining light, edge to them. It doesn't seem to make much sense to use a laptop full of beats when you have two guitars, drums, and a glockenspiel, but somehow it works. Cute lead Blake Hazard recalls Laugh-In era Goldie Hawn with her aw shucks sentimentalism and when she sings the band's towering "You and Me and the Bourgeois" she is absolutely sensational.
Headlights are a lot darker than Submarines and yet the best way to describe them: like the Strokes...but happy. Gallant flourishes of soft guitars, more keyboard and xylophone-like prancing make for smiles but it is balanced by heavy fuzz, a little distortion, and some dark vocals. It all comes together with a thorough, consistent percussion, and they know what to add and when to add it.

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Thursday, May 29, 2008

Remembering Harvey Korman

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Dirtbombs to Tour With Spiritualized

But before they do, they'll return from Europe with dates at Maxwell's on Friday July 11, Fort Greene Park on July 12 (as part of the Afro-Punk festival on a bill that also features the Noisettes and Michelle N'degeocello), and Asbury Lanes on July 13.

Then they tour, making stops in Indianapolis, Atlanta, Nashville, Washington D.C., Cleveland, and Buffalo. In the midst of all that, the Dirtbombs will make their Terminal 5 debut on July 27th.
Live at the Troubador on May 17th:

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Dream Ticket: Gogol Bordello and Murder by Death

June 20
McCarren Park Pool

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The XYZ Affair, Action Painters, Airborne Toxic Event, Tullycraft, My Teenage Stride, Others All in a Single Week

Tue June 10 - XYZ Affair and Action Painters at Music Hall of Williamsburg...for FREE.

Thu June 12 - Airborne Toxic Event at Pianos (the night before they open for the Fratellis at Webster Hall)

Fri June 13 - Tullycraft at Pianos as part of the NYC Popfest

Sat June 14 - My Teenage Stride (as well as well the Pains of Being Pure at Heart and others) at the Music Hall of Williamsburg

So to recap - Music Hall, Pianos, Pianos, Music Hall

Last time I saw the A.T.E., they played Pianos and I had to run after they played to go catch another a show at...the Music Hall. It's all connected.

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The Pastrami Chronicles, Volume 3: The Joys of Yiddish Cooking

The overall history of Yiddish cooking here:

Tune in about 20 minutes in for the Pastrami discussion. Arthur Schwartz needs a little correcting: Adelman's is NOT in Williamsburg, it is on Kings Highway near Ocean Ave - right where Gravesend/Sheepshead Bay meets Midwood. A long ways away from Williamsburg. But he's right about something - order "juicy".

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Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Airborne Toxic Event Return to New York Via Fratellis

The Fratellis exploded last year with their one hit and have retracted a bit, playing Webster Hall on June 13. That show sold out quick, and now the Airborne Toxic Event have been added to the bill. They say on their MySpace bulletin they will attempt to play their own NYC show the night before. They're also playing the Virgin fest in Toronto on September 6th.

In the meantime, the debut full length album art is up and the album will be released August 5th.

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First The Blogger, Then The Blog Commenter

First, the New York Times magazine has a cover story on the drama in the life of some dopey Gawker blogger. Now New York magazine focuses on the mystique of a commenter on the blog Brownstoner...with a cover story! A cover story!

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Monday, May 26, 2008

A Meditation on Punk and Architecture

No not these guys, but a piece involving a Gang of Four/Mission of Burma gig many, many years ago.

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Sunday, May 25, 2008

Adventures in Living in New York on the Cheap

After my little job/poverty rant, it was redemptive to see this piece in the Times about twenty-somethings scrimping and taking short cuts to live a fun life while waiting for that big break to come through. It's always nice to not feel alone. In fact one of the people in the piece make an exception in their fiscal conserving for Bumble & Bumble hair product...just like me! (No foolin'!)


The BellRays @ The Delancey

The BellRays; The Architects; Nathan Halpern
@ The Delancey
New York, NY - May 24, 2008

There is no band in the world quite like the BellRays. Not a one. They could be playing hard charging rock or they could be playing blissful soul ballads, and you know who you are hearing in each method and that is amazing. Of course when they find ways to mix it up within songs, that's also amazing. Lisa Kekaula's voice is beyond reproach, and the boys in the band are top of the line. Two extra shouts of praise for drummer Craig Waters - first for his drum solo of the year and second for wearing a marathon running outfit. Brilliant.
Little bitty Delancey lounge could barely contain the sheer force of the band's sound, but not only did it contain the sound, it sounded great. This is one of the best venues in the city, and it seems to be rarely used.

When the Architects from Kansas City began their set, I thought to myself "Gee, these guys seem to be really inspired by AC/DC". Then lead singer Brandon Phillips (sporting a Wonka Vision shirt of all things) added the end of "Highway to Hell" to one of their songs. Then I saw his AC/DC brand belt. So it all made sense. One would like to think that this is what AC/DC sounded like on the club circuit in the 70's but with a slight touch of modern American punk. It's mostly pretty damn good.

Nathan Halpern began his set with a cover of Buddy Holly's "Everyday" and then launched into a real boogie-woogie Elvis Presley-like romp with his fun band. And it was great. The more contemporary alt-pop ballads and bar band-ish rockers were fine enough but they didn't top the opening.

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Remembering Dick Martin

Barbara Feldman alert! Barbara Feldman alert!

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Saturday, May 24, 2008

Updates From the Camera Obscura Recording Session

Kenny locked himself out of the temporary apartment and then suffered from a sore hand.

Gavin reports that the week's worth of recording is done and there's an ABBA-like picture to be released to the world soon. Oh and that the album will probably come out next year.

Traceyanne is feeling grand.

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Thursday, May 22, 2008

Clare & The Reasons on Fair Game

Fair Game has been in repeats this week and tonight's show is from last September and it's with Clare Muldaur.

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New from Action Painters: "Supermarket"

The brand new single is up on the MySpace page. They are playing in just a couple of hours at the Mercury Lounge. They are also playing a party on June 4 (stay tuned for details) and they are playing, along with La Strada, at the Deli Magazine party at Galapagos on July 3. They also recently put out their first video.

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Camera Obscura Recording New LP!

They're in Stockholm! And they're using ABBA's studio! And maybe even their equipment! Bjorn from Peter, Bjorn, and John is arranging the strings! They make me use a lot of exclamation points!

They're blogging about it!

Day 1 from Carey
Day 2 from Gav
Day 3 from Gav
Day 4 from Carey

Camera Obscura covering ABBA's "Super Trouper":

ABBA is one of John McCain's favorite bands by the way - no foolin'.

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Jena Malone is in That Zooey/M Movie...She Also Invents Instruments

Jena Malone - another young actress turned Indie singer - is in The Go-Getter, the movie starring Zooey Deschanel and featuring M. Ward's acting debut.

The Go-Getter - Trailer

Meanwhile, Pitchfork reports that Malone has actually built her own instrument.

Da Gum has photos and related clips from the set of She & Him's first video.

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Decemberists + Obama = Mega Party

The record setting Obama rally in Portland this past weekend is still being talked about, and conservative pundits, who obviously having no idea who the Decemberists are, just sort of assume that the record setting crowd was mostly there for the band. Pitchfork isn't obviously taking into account that the Decemberists scored the Best Album of 2005 back under this old blog's list system, and, considering they also had a noted album in 2006, it is clear that this past weekend's party had little to do with Obama but with the much-renowned Pennypacker-Bump. This isn't to be confused with the Colbert-Bump, that the Decemberists also, presumably, benefited from.

I don't care...I still think the nomination will be taken away from him. That's cynicism I can believe in.

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Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Tom Waits Interviews Himself

The press conference with himself wasn't enough.

From his record label website

Here are some highlights:
Q: What's the most curious record in your collection?
A: In the seventies a record company in LA issued a record called "The best of Marcel Marceau." It had forty minutes of silence followed by applause and it sold really well. I like to put it on for company. It really bothers me, though, when people talk through it.

Q: What's heaven for you?
A: Me and my wife on Rte. 66 with a pot of coffee, a cheap guitar, pawnshop tape recorder in a Motel 6, and a car that runs good parked right by the door.

Q: What's hard for you?
A: Mostly I straddle reality and the imagination. My reality needs imagination like a bulb needs a socket. My imagination needs reality like a blind man needs a cane. Math is hard. Reading a map. Following orders. Carpentry. Electronics. Plumbing. Remembering things correctly. Straight lines. Sheet rock. Finding a safety pin. Patience with others. Ordering in Chinese. Stereo instructions in German.

Q: What's wrong with the world?
A: We are buried beneath the weight of information, which is being confused with knowledge; quantity is being confused with abundance and wealth with happiness. Leona Helmsley's dog made 12 million last year... and Dean McLaine, a farmer in Ohio made $30,000. It's just a gigantic version of the madness that grows in every one of our brains. We are monkeys with money and guns.

Q: What is on Hemmingway's gravestone?
A: "Pardon me for not getting up."

Q: What remarkable things have you found in unexpected places?
08. Most unlikely location for a Chicano crowd: A Morrissey concert.
11. A Chinese man with a Texan accent in Scotland.

Q: What are some sounds you like?
01. An asymmetrical airline carousel created a high pitched haunted voice brought on by the friction of rubbing and it sounded like a big wet finger circling the rim of a gigantic wine glass.
02. Street corner evangelists
03. Pile drivers in Manhattan
04. My wife's singing voice
05. Horses coming/trains coming
06. Children when school's out
07. Hungry crows
08. Orchestra tuning up
09. Saloon pianos in old westerns
10. Rollercoaster
11. Headlights hit by a shotgun
12. Ice melting
13. Printing presses
14. Ball game on a transistor radio
15. Piano lessons coming from an apartment window
16. Old cash registers/Ca Ching
17. Muscle cars
18. Tap dancers
19. Soccer crowds in Argentina
20. Beatboxing
21. Fog horns
22. A busy restaurant kitchen
23. Newsrooms in old movies
24. Elephants stampeding
25. Bacon frying
26. Marching bands
27. Clarinet lessons
28. Victrola
29. A fight bell
30. Chinese arguments
31. Pinball machines
32. Children's orchestras
33. Trolley bell
34. Firecrackers
35. A Zippo lighter
36. Calliopes
37. Bass steel drums
38. Tractors
39. Stroh Violin
40. Muted trumpet
41. Tobacco Auctioneers
42. Musical saw
43. Theremin
44. Pigeons
45. Seagulls
46. Owls
47. Mockingbirds
48. Doves
The world's making music all the time.

Q: What's scary to you?
01. A dead man in the backseat of a car with a fly crawling on his eyeball.
02. Turbulence on any airline.
03. Sirens and search lights combined.
04. Gunfire at night in bad neighborhoods.
05. Car motor turning over but not starting, its getting dark and starting to rain.
06. Jail door closing.
07. Going around a sharp curve on the Pacific Coast Highway and the driver of your car has had a heart attack and died, and you're in the back seat.
08. You are delivering mail and you are confronted with a Doberman with rabies growling low and showing have no dog bones and he wants to bite your ass off.
09. In a movie...which wire do you cut to stop the time bomb, the green or the blue.
10. Mc Cain will win.
11. Germans with submachine guns.
12. Officers, in offices, being official.
13. You fell through the ice in the creek and it carried you down stream, and now as you surface you realize there's a roof of ice.

The European part of the tour has been's not looking good for the Northeast USA and Canada...Australia, Asia, Africa...

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DeVotchKa; Basia Bulat @ Terminal 5

DeVotchKA; Basia Bulat; Fancy Trash
@ Terminal 5
New York, NY - May 20, 2008

DeVotchKa are the true gypsies of rock n' roll, taking big hunks of everything, notably Mexican and Russian sounds, and putting it together for both thunderous and symphonic purposes. When backed by their string section, they are luscious, atmospheric. But when they are at their basic 4, they are whip-snapping, Moricone-rock connoisseurs. This dynamic can be summed up purely in lead singer/guitarist Nick Urata, who can serenade like a crooner before sending the crowd straight to hell. Mad professor of strings and various keyboards Tom Hagerman and drummer/horn man Shawn King administer their departments with the upmost duty, and Jeanie Schroder is a thumping, solid bass player when she isn't possibly the only woman who can dance around in a dress while playing a sousaphone.
Terminal 5's sound was hard on that big sousaphone but other than that, the now notoriously crampy and difficult hall was generous to the Colorado contingent. Or it could have just been that DeVotchKa conquered the difficulties.
DeVotchKa & Basia Bulat together - Photo by Pennypacker

Nick has fun with a theremin on SPTV:

Basia Bulat, by all rights, should be the next mega female Indie rock singer. Her voice may very well be unparalleled in her generation. To call it exquisite is to do it injustice. It is beyond anything as humble as the word "exquisite". Her songs are little blankets of joy and melancholy, and her choice of covers - like Daniel Johnston - are as sweet and adorable as her demeanor. She tamed big, bad Terminal 5 with that sensational voice and her tiny, little catalog of music. She's a big dose of sunshine in a sad world.
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Photo by Justin Wagner

SPTV insta-clip of Basia's "In The Night":

Fancy Trash are from Massachusetts and they seem like it. These guys should be working the door to the Newhart mountain hotel. These guys define safe, older, acoustic pop. That's not a swipe, though. They construct and perform pretty substantive songs.

Photos by Justin Wagner via KevChino

Sonic Parthenon photos (the old camera is on its last legs, sorry for the poor quality).

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Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Always Look On The Bright Side of Life

  • It is entirely possible, maybe even likely, in the span of the next few weeks to months that, for several reasons, the gig reporting and even operation of this blog may come to a halt for an indefinite period of time. In fact, by typing this out, I am hoping it does not become the case as it then would make me look wrong, something I frequently am.
  • On some, but not entirely, related note: once again, if anyone out there knows of any good jobs that pay well, that have openings, please contact me.
  • Is cheese cloth really made out of cheese?
  • I still say Clinton will win the nomination. There is no way the establishment in the Democratic party will feel comfortable with a candidate like Obama. Look at how he makes the poor Appalachian white folk feel. That's the entire electorate we're talking about. It can't be like this. Stop him before he stops the hate.
  • I will say she will win the nomination the day after he loses to McCain, that's how sure of it I am.
  • So I had a job interview a couple months ago. Corporate recruiter. They were looking for new corporate recruiters. The woman on the phone would not let me answer a single question. She'd let me say two words, and then cut me off to go on a long, standard stump speech. At one point she says "I know you're just super excited for this opportunity" to which I said "not really" and she of course didn't hear that because she was off to the next bit. The best bit was when she just assumed that I was a football player because all the guys that did this job were athletes and they took that aggression and energy into the corporate world. So I go for the interview anyway, and I meet her boss first. And he hates me from the first moment. I'm not wearing a four figure suit, I have a bit of facial hair, etc. When I ask him what is his motivation for the job, he tells me it's not just the money, it's the ability to "conquer people". And you can tell he didn't like that I could even ask that question. And he tells me - to my face - that I am not presentable. That I don't have what it takes. It was like out of a movie. I didn't even bother to stay to talk to the woman who called me. Which was a shame because she was hot.
  • Isn't it scary how personalized cover letters get ignored but using a widely-passed around standard cover letter gets responses?
  • One thing I have never understood about human nature in the career world, is the ability of "have to". You have to say this , you have to say that. You have to do something one way and never another way. And no one knows why. You just have to. And if you question any of it, with a simple "why?" then there is something wrong with you.
  • On the other hand, who wouldn't success in the big world? 175 dollar burgers are just the start of it. Think of all that money. Think of all the conquering. More importantly than all that, think of the bills that no longer weigh you down. Think of the food on your table. Think of the debt that vanishes...that debt...all that debt.

  • Labels:

    New Hold Steady; National; El Madmo - All Out Today

    The new single from the forthcoming Stay Positive is out today on Itunes but you can hear it on the Hold Steady's MySpace page right now. SAXOPHONE!

    The National's film - A Skin, A Night - is out on DVD today.

    El Madmo - the new Norah Jones project - are out with their debut record today.

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    Adventures in Ironic Dining?

    You thought 81 bucks for a hamburger was crazy? Gothamist has the details on this one again but... the Wall Street Burger Shoppe offers an all-day menu of interesting burgers ranging from $4-$6. And their bar menu has a burger for $18, and nothing else on their menu comes remotely close to costing what the "Richard Nouveau" burger one has to wonder what the restaurant is trying to say? In fact, google the name Richard Nouveau...interesting stuff. In fact, you don't even have to do that, read the "About Us" page on Pocket Change, the site that offered the video from the Burger Shoppe. In fact, just look at the whole site - it's an ironic comment on the state of the super rich today.

    In other words...this appears to be some kind of a joke. Or some kind of attempt at Ironic Cuisine. How ironic can it be though if you're actually charging that much for it and people are able and willing to buy it? Actually, that's very ironic.

    Strange times are here...

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    Monday, May 19, 2008

    Airborne Toxic Event - "The Girls in Their Summer Dresses"

    The Airborne Toxic EventThe Girls in Their Summer Dresses

    Yet another way to hear yet another song as the countdown till the LP release rolls on.

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    Foxboro Hot Tubs are Green Day

    I have no clue when this was actually confirmed, but it turns out that this whole time, the mysteriously ambiguous and shy Foxboro Hot Tubs are in fact, Green Day - in pure, garage rock, Little Steven-esque, alter-ego form. They're even touring under this moniker.

    It's Green Day...


    The album (for preview and purchase)

    "Mother Mary":

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    New (of sorts) from Pela - "Good Foot on a Bad Door Step"

    After kicking around as a demo on their site, this song has been given the full band treatment and was recently the KEXP song of the day. It carries on the band's signature sound, and with McCarthy back to health (after that incident) and back on the road, expect a fine show on the 6th of June at the Bowery.

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    Sunday, May 18, 2008

    Leggy Long Blondes @ Bowery

    The Long Blondes; Drug Rug; The Subjects
    @ Bowery Ballroom
    May 16, 2008

    The Long Blondes are a pretty snappy, and very solid British rock outfit out of Sheffield. Led by spunky yet vampish singer Kate Jackson, who has legs up to her neck, the band's eclectic nature most readily identifies them with Blondie. Not that every eclectic disco-punk band led by a sassy chick needs to be compared to Blondie, but in this case it's obvious. And it works. How they aren't dominating radio is a mystery.
    Three times now this band called Drug Rug has snuck onto a bill I already intended on attending. This time the band was slightly stripped down by a member or two and it had a bit of an affect as they seemed to lose a tad step in the country rock stomp department that they previously did so well. Let's get back to full strength kids.
    The Subjects began strong and ended with a sleek flourish of Indie pop but the middle was kind of...lacking. But their affable nature, and devotion to their sound, should spell big things to come.

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    Friday, May 16, 2008

    Dirtbombs at Golden Plains; Black Lips at Other Music

    Performance of "Underdog"

    The Dirtbombs' session at Other Music will premiere on June 27th.
    Past recorded sessions include:
    White Williams
    Richard Hawley
    No Age
    St. Vincent

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    Wednesday, May 14, 2008

    Wow! Nick Cave Reads My Mind With New Video "From Nowhere"

    So Nick Cave's new record is decent. The best songs, as of the current listens, are the bookends - the opener title track of "Dig Lazarus Dig!!!" and the last track, the 8 minute "More News From Nowhere". Earlier this week, the video for "Night of the Lotus Eaters" was posted on the web. Today on the treadmill, listening to "More News..." I thought, "I know it's a long song, but gee what a great video could be made for this song". I come back from the gym and...voilà!:

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    Monday, May 12, 2008

    Three Bands I Like as of Today That I Probably Won't Be Seeing: The Heavy, The Blacks, and Titus Andronicus

    Soul-thing known as the Heavy are in town this week for three dates.
    The Blacks are in the middle of a four night swing through New York - 3 nights at Pianos, described on their site as an audience participation extravaganza, and the fourth night at Union Pool opening for...the Heavy.
    Also you gotta give it to the Blacks - the most used color/adjective in rock music today and they just decided they would just take it on its own. There. Eat that all you Keys, Angels, Lips, Hollies, Rebel Motorcycle Club, Halos, Mountain, etc etc etc. Eat it!

    Titus Andronicus will be playing this coming Saturday at Silent Barn and will be opening for Los Campesinos! (themselves a not too shabby work-up of poppy rock n' roll).

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    New (and First Ever) Action Painters Video - "Sooner or Later"


    The band is playing a week from Thursday at the Merc.

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    The Charlie Browniest NPR Segment

    Scott Simon + Charie Brown = NPR's In Character series

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    Jukebox the Ghost; Morning State @ Mercury Lounge

    Jukebox the Ghost; Morning State
    @ Mercury Lounge
    New York, NY - May 10, 2008

    I know the XYZ Affair headlined the show. I know that. But something came up and I had to leave. I'll make it up to those boys, I promise. I know they put on another fine show.
    Jukebox the Ghost, for what I saw of them, offered very friendly pop in a very friendly manner and in all senses, they were quite...friendly. A little hokey...but in a good way.
    Morning State were by the book pop. Not "by the numbers". By the book. "By the numbers" is bad. "By the book" is good. Get it? They know what they're doing, and they're doing it right.

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    Thursday, May 08, 2008

    American Mars in Chicago

    Well, with Blanche on the disabled list, it's time to check in with the band members to see what else they are up to. Feeny is back at work with one of his other projects, American Mars, an excellent alt-country band. They recently played Chicago:

    Video for "Long Walk Home"

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    New AC/DC Album This Year

    The official word came today via e-mail:

    The boys have been holed up in a Vancouver studio with producer Brendan O'Brien and longtime audio engineer Mike Fraser, cooking up their first collection of new material since the 2000 release of Stiff Upper Lip.

    Perhaps this will be the long awaited acoustic pop ballad album...

    ...yeah right...

    Brian Johnson on some morning radio show a few weeks ago. The show fools (lord those FM morning voices are awful) made reference to something called Totally Baked. The sentiment seems right though the actual comedy seems pretty bad. Brian's songs are not exactly the greatest, but they are interesting to hear if only because he's definitely trying to preserve his voice. Could the next AC/DC record be full of bluesy, controlled, calm, vocals?

    Last check, Brian is STILL working on his stage musical for Helen of Troy. That's no joke.

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    Goldfrapp on Fair Game; Langhorne Slim on BPP

    Goldfrapp was all acoustic and non-disco with Faith

    Langhorne was all Langhorne with Alison

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    More on Gen X vs. The Boomers

    Continuing from this:

    Ahh ha! It's The Silent Generation. Yep, them and the Lost Generation. Cast my lot with them.


    Wednesday, May 07, 2008

    Steampunk in the New York Times

    Behold! Gotham's most important periodical of record (now that the Tribune-World-Herald bit the dust), has a profile of New Yorkers adopting the steampunk style for entertainment and fashion. The fashion appears to be a bit much (frankly, anything smacking of any effort is always a bit much), but of all the things for people to dawdle about, this has to be the least offensive, most pleasant of subcultures.

    Inter-hypernet linkage to the reportage by one Ruth La Ferla of the New York Times

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    Monday, May 05, 2008

    Tom Waits' "Press Conference"

    Tour dates have been posted but no New York date (or any Northeast dates for that matter)...



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    More on Gotham City and Brooklyn Development

    Changes coming to 125th St?

    Brooklyn is busy again, despite the recent club problems:
    The IKEA store/sore (depending on how you feel about it) is finally coming to Red Hook, which has taken, or never did take, off as a trendy neighborhood (depending on how you feel about it, and which block you walk on).

    Speaking of eye sores, there can be no debate on what Frank Gehry now has planned for Atlantic Yards. Is this punishment for the shiny, slick tower being scrapped?

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    Sunday, May 04, 2008

    Anna of Airborne Toxic Event Perfoms With Vampire Weekend

    The headline is pretty self-explanatory but it can also be pointed out that, as per the report from the Airborne Toxic Event's MySpace bulletin, Anna was a dorm-mate of the VW boys at Columbia.
    Vampire Weekend - "Ladies of Cambridge" in the studio

    You can see the rest of Vampire Weekend's MySpace Transmissions performance here.

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    She and Him and NPR and Nick Cave And Cormac McCarthy and Michael Chabon and Coens and Movies

    Zooey and Matt were interviewed last week on Day to Day, while Zooey was interviewed on Fresh Air a little over a month ago.

    By coincidence, I caught The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford this weekend, and it's a film that has, as part of its thoroughly sharp cast, Zooey and Nick Cave (also recently on Fresh Air). Nick - along with Warren Ellis - scored the film's music.

    Here's the IMDB page of The Go-Getter, the upcoming film which stars Zooey and includes Matt in his acting debut. And for good measure, here's the IMDB page of Nick's upcoming scripted project, to be directed by John Hillcoat, who directed Nick's previous scripts, notably The Proposition. Hillcoat is currently working on the film adaptation of Cormac McCarthy's The Road, which - based on its own merit as a novel and on the strength of No Country For Old Men - promises to be the movie event of the year. Nick is indeed scoring the music for that adaptation.

    Speaking of No Country For Old Men, that adaptation was of course directed by the Coen Brothers, who are putting the finishing touches on Burn After Reading, which stars George Clooney and Brad Pitt, the latter of whom I just watched this weekend in The Assassination of Jesse James. The internet campfires state that after the Coens work on their next film, the rumored about A Serious Man, they will get to work on an adaptation of Michael Chabon's The Yiddish Policeman's Union, which I happen to be reading right now.

    Nick Cave was in The Assassination of Jesse James with Zooey Deschanel who was in The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy with Sam Rockwell (who was also in Jesse James) who was in Confessions of a Dangerous Mind with George Clooney who was in Ocean's 11 with Brad Pitt (also in Jesse James) and Julia Roberts the latter of whom was in Flatliners guessed it...Kevin Bacon.

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    Saturday, May 03, 2008

    Langhorne Slim, Be Your Own Pet on VIMBY

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    Faith Salie Meets Ira Glass

    It's public radio heaven.

    The second season of the This American Life TV show begins tomorrow.

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    Friday, May 02, 2008

    The Hold Steady; The Virgins @ Webster Hall

    The Hold Steady; The Virgins; Republic Tigers; Bad Veins
    @ Webster Hall
    New York, NY - May 2, 2008

    This was the second consecutive Hold Steady show that was part of a special corporate event, in this case a Target sponsored showcase as part of the Tribeca Film Festival. THS served as the celebratory nightcap for what seemed to be a battle of the bands. Taking it easy on the new material, and serving up delectable renditions of their usuals as well as songs like "Multitude of Casualties" and "How A Resurrection Really Feels", Craig and the boys were in fine form.

    The Virgins are the latest in the long of line blog-buzz-hype bands and guess what? They actually lived up to said hype. If the Strokes and the Cars had a baby, this would be it. They were fun, sprightly, colorful, and full of pep. They also join the Dirtbombs as the second band this year to cover INXS' "Devil Inside".

    Remember a few years ago when a lot of bands had the word "republic" in their name? And a handful had "tigers"? Well these guys may be a bit behind in hipster etymology (maybe "Republic Bears" and "Republic Wolves" were already taken) but they've tapped into cacophonous indie pop rather...well? Some of it worked, most of it didn't. They also need to lighten up a bit.

    Bad Veins also had a little bit of a Strokes thing going on. If only in that the lead singer of this odd duo used a bullhorn and an old telephone to get that Casablancas singing style down. But these Cinci kids were more like the Republic Tigers than the Virgins, and they were even a little bit more out of it than said Republic Tigers and yet somehow they won $10,000 out of this event.

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    Thursday, May 01, 2008

    Scarlett vs. Starlett Johansson

    Despite the fact that her rendition of "Summertime" was very good, Scarlett Johansson's stab at an album of Tom Waits covers appears to be very, very bad - at least based on the new single. Meanwhile the band called the Teenagers have a creepy song called "Starlett Johansson" and it is much better than what Scarlett has put out.

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    The Triumph of Langhorne Slim...@ The Mercury Lounge

    Langhorne Slim; Hoots & Hellmouth; Miles Benjamin Anthony Robinson; J Roddy Waltson & The Business
    @ Mercury Lounge
    New York, NY - April 30, 2008

    Why is Langhorne Slim so damn good? Is it the showmanship and the skill? Is it the class act good nature stage presence? There may not be a nicer fella making music today. His guitars kept going out of tune, he broke a string, other stuff was amiss - at his big record release party, and he took it all in stride, having fun to the very end. It was a special night - after years and years of working hard, Langhorne was headlining a sold out (way in advance) show on a Wednesday night at the Mercury Lounge. And just fresh off the heels of opening for Josh Ritter at the Music Hall, where he himself will be headlining in a month. With his excellent War Eagles in tow, Langhorne Slim is settling in comfortably for a long career of well deserved success.

    Hoots & Hellmouth remain an exceptionally fun and well-oiled bluegrass stomp machine out of Philadelphia. They are still one of the best kept secrets in the Northeast but for how much longer?

    Miles Benjamin Anthony Robinson has too long of a name and a terrible, lazy, out of tune singing voice. Except for a few songs that had something to latch on to, most of it was adrift in nothingness. What the heck was this?

    J Roddy Waltson & The Business are essentially a 70's arena rock band doing boogie woogie blues. It would be almost uninspired and devoid of creativity if it wasn't for the fact that this was about as energetic and fervent a band as has been seen in awhile. The energy, the raw thunder, was off the scale. And they attracted some interesting people in their other words, stay tuned because you may be seeing this band in some bigger places real soon.

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