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August 27, 2014

by Bill Pearis

Hookworms @ BVCMJ 2013 (more by Chris La Putt)
Hookworms

Leeds psychedelic screamers Hookworms have announced details of their new album. It's called The Hum and will be out on Weird World / Domino on November 11. "The Impasse" is the first-released track from it and is another full-throttle careen down a winding mountain road with frontman MJ belting it out like a Pentecostal preacher. You can stream it in this post and preorders of the album are available now.

Hookworms made my #1 album of 2013 and their first and only visit to the States was for CMJ (including one of our day parties). Let's hope we see them back in North America sooner than later.

Song stream and The Hum cover art below...

Continue reading "Hookworms announce new LP, 'The Hum' (stream a track)"

by Andrew Sacher

Honey at The Studio at Webster Hall in July (more by Amanda Hatfield)
Honey

Brooklyn's Honey are a new-ish band (with ex-members of Psychic Ills, Amen Dunes and Stupid Party) that have been playing around their hometown a good deal lately. You may have caught them recently with Destruction Unit, Crystal Stilts or The Men. They take the swirling riffs and wah-pedal freakouts of late '60s psychedelic rock, and inject it with garage punk energy that has made their shows something you can zone out to but also something you can bang your head to. They recently mentioned on their website that a debut album is on the way, and you can get a taste of that now from the single "Born." Listen below.

Honey's next show is opening the final free Summer Thunder show of the summer in Union Pool's backyard this Saturday (8/30) afternoon (2 PM start). It's headlined by J Mascis' psychedelic blues jam group Heavy Blanket, which should be a great fit. Hopefully this goes better than last year's Heavy Blanket show at Summer Thunder.

Flyer for Saturday's show and song stream below...

Continue reading "Honey (ex-Psychic Ills, Amen Dunes) releasing an LP, streaming a track, opening for Heavy Blanket at Summer Thunder"

Lavell Crawford

You might know him best as everyone's favorite Breaking Bad character Huell, but Lavell Crawford is also a stand up comedian. This year he has live dates coming up in Knoxville, Washington DC, Denver, Fort Lauderdale, Dallas, NYC and NJ. The SIX NYC shows are this October at comedy club Caroline's on Broadway (tickets). The NJ show was just announced at Wellmont Theater in Montclair on December 5. Tickets for the NJ show are available now for $30 VIA GROUPON. Friday they go up to at least $50 when they go on sale via Live Nation.

Breaking Bad just took home a whole bunch of Emmys for its final season which seems like it happened so long ago...

As "True Detective's" cosmically attuned sleuth Rust Cohle put it: "Someone once told me time is a flat circle. Everything we've ever done or will do, we're gonna do over and over and over again."
[Washington Post]
Breaking Bad spinoff, Better Call Saul, which is based on Bob Odenkirk's Saul Goodman character (Huell's boss), will premiere on AMC in February 2015. Meanwhile they've released a few very short teasers which you can watch below...

Continue reading "Lavell Crawford (Huell) playing shows, Breaking Bad winning Emmys; Better Call Saul"

by Andrew Sacher

Jazz June

Earlier this year, emo veterans The Jazz June put out their first new song in 12 years on a split with Dikembe, and mentioned that a full length produced by Into It. Over It.'s Evan Weiss was to follow. That album has now officially been announced. It's called After The Earthquake, and it will be out on November 11 via Topshelf (the same label that released Braid's comeback LP this year). It follows 2002's Better Off Without Air. That's the album artwork above and you can check out the tracklist, which includes "Over Underground" from the Dikembe split, below. (Their latest dates also say they play Fun Fun Fun Fest. A new addition to the Austin fest? We're not 100% sure yet, but stay tuned for confirmation on that.)

Into It. Over It. will be involved with other emo veterans this year too. His tour schedule includes opening the 10/11 date of American Football's three night run In NYC, and opening most of the Mineral tour.

Speaking of, Mineral singer Chris Simpson (also of The Gloria Record), is releasing a new album with his Zookeeper project this year, Pink Chalk, which is due out on October 14 via Count Your Lucky Stars (the label run by Empire! Empire!, whose new LP features a guest appearance from Chris). Chris stopped making music you can accurately call "emo" a while ago, and this new song is more along the lines of singer/songwriter indie. Good stuff no matter what genre name you give it, as you can hear (via Stereogum) below.

Continue reading "The Jazz June detail new LP, 'After The Earthquake'; Mineral singer Chris Simpson streaming a song from new Zookeeper LP"

by Bill Pearis

gutteridge

North American fans of '80s/'90s kiwi pop have had it good lately. The Clean are touring in support of Merge's great (and affordably-priced) Anthology box set; Flying Nun has set up American offices and have reissued LPs by The Bats, The Verlaines and The Clean; and just today we got the news that Peter Jefferies would be touring for the first time in 20 years.

More news, though mainly just for folks in (or visiting) NYC. Peter Gutteridge happens to be in town and has been convinced to play a show while here -- his first-ever American performance. Gutteridge spent time in original line-ups of both The Clean and The Chills before starting noise-rock band Snapper in the early '90s. In 1989, he put out a solo album, Pure, which was reissued recently by 540 Records and which he'll be performing in full at the show. You can stream that in full below.

Also on the bill is Mega Bog, aka Seattle resident Erin Birgy, whose new album, Gone Banana is out September 23 on Couple Skate. (That label is now part of the Omnian Music Group umbrella which includes Captured Tracks, Flying Nun and more.) It's hazy, charming bedroom indiepop and you can stream a couple tracks from it below.

The Palisades show also has IJI of which Birgy is also a member, plus EZTV who make Marshal Crenshaw / Nick Lowe style powerpop (they were pretty good at Baby's All Right opening for Jacco Gardner earlier this month). $10 at the door. Flyer for the show, plus streams of all on the bill, below...

Continue reading "Peter Gutteridge (The Clean, The Chills) playing first-ever US show in NYC; Seattle's Mega Bog & more also on the bill"

by Andrew Sacher

PRD

Brooklyn psych rockers Prince Rupert's Drops are releasing the followup to 2012's solid Run Slow with a new album, Climbing Light, on November 11 via Beyond Beyond is Beyond Records. Its first single, "Dangerous Death Ray," is a trip back to the acid-induced sounds of the late '60s with groovy basslines, wah-pedal guitar solos, and equally throwback vocal melodies. It premieres in this post and can be streamed below.

The band plays around their hometown a good amount, and their next show will be this Friday (8/29) at Baby's All Right with Love As Laughter and August Wells. Tickets are on sale now.

Song stream below...

Continue reading "Prince Rupert's Drops releasing a new LP (stream a track), playing Baby's with Love As Laughter on Friday"

by Ian Chainey

drummandlesca

The prolific Kevin Drumm and Jason Lescalleet have crossed paths before, cutting the EP The Invisible Curse last year which received the wink-wink Soundcloud tag of 'power ballad.' Their newest collaboration is The Abyss, out on Erstwhile Records and available at Jason Lescalleet's Discogs store. For this album, both droners sink their teeth into something darker. Or, at least, that's the spin I put on it. That filtered-through-the-self reaction is one quality making drone unique and fascinating to those who regard it as more than a wall of noise. Good drone, the stuff we have here, is like an executable program rather than a concrete statement of purpose. It'll swallow what you're feeling, run it though its internal workings, and spit something out that tells you as much about yourself as the artists that made it.

The nine minute preview we've received of the near-50 minute "The Echo Of Your Past," a cut culled from the second of The Abyss's two discs, opens with a deep bass rumble, sounding like a plane damned to taxi for eternity. It's an expansive tone, something of a sound engineering marvel. More abstractly, it's like Drumm and Lescalleet uncovered the pitch of a planetary body grinding against dark matter. But, like good drone, it operates under the idea that there's an infinite amount of infinity within every nook and cranny. Phantom tones rise and fall in the background before another set of machinery starts crunching away in the sample's middle. From there, "The Echo Of Your Past" modulates into a stinging major chord.

So. . . what does it mean? Is it Proustian recall in slow motion? Is it a way to engage with the fact that recorded sound is always in the past, never in the present or future? Or is it just meant to inspire whatever it inspires, a brief detour to mindfully explore our existence, a pursuit we usually avoid while attending to self-imposed day-to-day tasks? As music's mood ring, drone would probably just answer, "Yes. Yeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeees." Drumm and Lescalleet do a great job providing the right confines for that Q&A.

Kevin and Jason will celebrate the new album with a release show on September 4 at Trans-Pecos with support from violinist C Spencer Yeh. $10 at the door gets you in.

In addition to The Abyss, Kevin Drumm will release Trouble via Editions Mego on October 13 which the label has tagged as one of his quietest albums. You can hear a sample here. And Jason Lescalleet dropped Much to My Demise this year, the album that he toured to support in April.

You can hear "The Echo Of Your Past" below.

Continue reading "Kevin Drumm & Jason Lescalleet have a new collaborative album (stream an excerpt), playing NYC w/ C Spencer Yeh"

by Bill Pearis

IMAGE

Grimes new single with Blood Diamonds, "Go," now has a video, co-directed by Claire herself with her brother Mac Boucher under the collaborative name Roco-Prime. It's like some kind of Tarsem/NABIL collaboration as imagined by Hype Williams. There's swordplay and flowing scarves in the desert, hypercolor slo-mo dancing, splashing about...pretty much the whole gambit of over-the-top music video imagery. Also: voice of Solid Snake David Hayter reading from Dane's Inferno. But what does it mean? Claire offers some insight:

It's our take on Dante's inferno. The circles of hell reflect more contemporary issues though. We shot a bunch at the salton sea which is basically an apocalyptic wasteland filled with dead fish because of human carelessness, the bullet hole hallway a la korn freak on a leash etc etc. If you look closely you can find clues. Haha, but in the usual fashion it is also abstract enough to just be a trippy visual accompaniment to the song.
Interpret for yourself -- check out the "Go" video below...

Continue reading "Grimes made a video for "Go" (watch)"

Alt-JAlt-J

The new Alt-J album is less than a month away (due 9/23 via Canvasback), and though their tour doesn't hit NYC until November 16 at Beacon Theatre (sold out), they'll be here much sooner for an intimate show on September 2 at Le Poisson Rouge at 9 PM. It's one of NPR's 'First Listen Live' shows, which means they'll be playing the new album in full and it will stream at NPR Music's site. You have to RSVP for a chance to get in. Follow NPR Music on Twitter to find out how.

Updated tour dates are listed below...

Continue reading "Alt-J playing NPR 'First Listen Live' at LPR before tour (RSVP)"

by Andrew Sacher

Bellows

Bellows is the project of Brooklyn songwriter Oliver Kalb, who you may also know as a member of Eskimeaux and Told Slant, whose main members Gabby Smith and Felix Walworth (respectively) are both in Bellows. Rounding out the Bellows lineup is Henry Crawford, aka Small Wonder, who like Oliver, Gabby and Felix is a member of the art collective The Epoch. Bellows' new album, Blue Breath, comes out next week (9/2) via Dead Labour (pre-order), the same label that released this year's Big Ups album. It's an album of bedroom folk/pop that's more than a little indebted to early Sufjan Stevens, but it's refreshing to hear someone keeping that kind of stuff alive in 2014. A full stream of the album premieres in this post and can be listened to below.

Bellows and Eskimeaux will be heading out on a tour together which begins at Brooklyn's Shea Stadium on Friday (8/29). Also on that bill is The Ugly Club, Terrible Terrible and Stargazy. The tour continues at SUNY Purchase the next night with The Hotelier and hits other NY and NY-area places including Rochester, Albany, Bard College, Troy, and New Brunswick. All dates are listed below.

Continue reading "Bellows releasing an album, touring w/ Eskimeaux (dates and LP stream)"