Entries tagged with: Alan McGee
by Bill Pearis
From 1983-1999, Alan McGee ran Creation Records which began life releasing obscure indie bands (like his own group Biff Bang Pow) but became a major force in the shoegaze/Britpop era thanks to bands like My Bloody Valentine, Ride, Oasis, and Super Furry Animals. When that label ran its course, McGee started Poptones, a much-smaller scale label that was home to Cosmic Rough Riders, Oranger, Ping Pong Bitches and others. Anyone remember Poptones nights McGee used to do at Don Hill's in 2001?
Poptones ceased operations in 2007 and McGee has been quiet since. Till now. He's just announced a new label, 359 Music. Allan fills us in via press release:
Recently I found myself reinvigorated by new music again after being 5 years away from music living in rural Wales, and from which there has been much talk about how I will return to music. As recently talked about in the press, my original plan was to do a deal with major label backing in Japan. But when it came down to it I realised that I didn't want to come back to music through a major music label - that's not what I want to be part of. That's when I had a chat with Iain McNay from Cherry Red and we quite quickly put our heads together and developed between us a much better deal for 359 Music which will be a joint venture with Cherry Red...Among the first signings at 359 are Liverpool singer-songwriter Chris Grant; 15-year-old folksinger John Lennon McCullagh (it's really his name); promising UK/French electronic act Mineral (not to be confused with the '90s emo band, this one features Craig Walker from early-'90s act Power of Dreams); and Gun Club Cemetery which is the new band from Alex Lowe who was the singer for Hurricane #1 (the band Andy Bell started when Ride broke up). You can stream a track from each of them below.
...My vision for 359 Music is a launch pad for new talent and some ignored older talent. We intend to release on average a dozen new bands per year every year - maybe more if I find a lot of new talent I like. Hopefully some of the artists will stick around and make numerous albums with 359 but some will go on to other things and that is just nature of the musical beast.
BEAUTIFUL NOISE is an in-depth exploration of a music movement in the late 20th century, a fascinating period when some innovative musicians mixed guitar noise into conventional pop song structures while maintaining a philosophy of letting the music speak for itself.Legendary shoegaze/dream pop bands My Bloody Valentine, Cocteau Twins, and The Jesus and Mary Chain are subject of new documentary, Beautiful Noise, who have launched a Kickstarter campaign to raise enough money for the film to be distributed in film festivals and released on DVD/Blu-Ray (via Pitchfork). In addition to those three bands, the film will feature interviews with/appearances by members of other shoegaze pioneers like Ride, Slowdive, Lush, Curve, Swervedriver, Medicine, Pale Saints, and more, plus appearances by Wayne Coyne, Trent Reznor, Billy Corgan, and Robert Smith, and performance videos (and some interviews) with current bands like Sigur Ros, M83, A Place to Bury Strangers, Grouper, Serena Maneesh, and others. The Kickstarter campaign has reached just over $17,000 of its $75,000 goal as of this post, and is open until December 15. More info and rewards details at the documentary's Kickstarter project page.
Although many of the people interviewed are notoriously press shy they have opened up about their music and experiences from over 20 years ago; how they defied the rules and became sonic innovators that have inspired so many.
Currently the documentary is in the final stages for worldwide release, and we need your help to raise the $75,000 to pay for limited run licensing and finishing costs to distribute in Film Festivals and on DVD/Blu-Ray.
This documentary will finally be released only if the fans of this music believe in this project and contribute.
This comes shortly after the news that My Bloody Valentine plans to release an album by the end of the year.
Campaign video below...
by Bill Pearis
In other not-till-October news, Echo & the Bunnymen's Ocean Rain show at Radio City Music Hall is coming up sooner than it seems -- October 1 -- and tickets are still available. As much as I LOVE that album, I must admit I haven't pulled the trigger on tickets just yet, though I'm sure I will. Just the idea of hearing "The Killing Moon" and "Silver" with a full orchestra is exciting.
Opening for that show are one of the UK's most-talked (praise and derision) bands of the year, Glasvegas, who former Creation records honcho Alan McGee called "the sound of young Scotland, and the most exciting thing I've heard since the Jesus and Mary Chain in the 80s." Of course he said the same thing about Heavy Stereo and other bands we don't remember, but the Glasvegas hype train hasn't derailed yet. McGee's hyperbolic statement notwithstanding, his comparison to the Mary Chain makes sense. They take a '50s greaser rock n' roll (including doo-wop-y ballads) and covering it in a layer of guitar effects and white noise that's nearly as thick as singer James Allen's nearly impenetrable Glasgow accent. (They've also got a standup drummer, just like Bobby Gilespie, except theirs is a girl.) I have to admit I like them, though the name makes me cringe.
In addition to the Bunnymen show, Glasvegas are doing a short East Coast tour, including a stop at Mercury Lounge on October 4. (Tickets are on sale). All dates and a video below...