Entries tagged with: Ava Luna

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photos by Amanda Hatfield; words by Rachel Kowal

Ok, I'll admit it. The first time I heard about BAM's Crossing the Ferry series, I quickly concocted an idyllic scenario that may or may not have involved sipping white wine on the deck of a boat lit with twinkling Christmas tree lights with Sufjan or an unidentified Dessner brother at my side. (Really, could someone get on the whole ferry show idea, please? Something other than the booze cruise?) Luckily, I had a few days for the disappointment to wear off.

Curated by the Bryce and Aaron Dessner of The National, The Crossing the Ferry series is a three-night, multi-room spectacle of music and film. Many of the likely suspects are there (My Brightest Diamond and Beirut Saturday, Sharon Van Etten on Thursday). But there are also a few wild cards.

Due to an early start time, I missed the first few sets, but arrived on Friday in time to catch a few in rapid succession, starting with the indie-soul outfit Ava Luna, who had a much more raucous, percussion-heavy sound than I remember. Back downstairs in the gorgeous Howard Gilman Opera House, I caught an intense performative DJ set by composer Tyondai Braxton (formerly of Battles) who sat atop a crazy metal table, surrounded by a complex web of blinking lights, laptops, and samplers.

The back and forth nature of the event created a festival-like atmosphere. Following Braxton's set, I headed back to the BAM Cafe to check out another artist I had never seen - Sinkane, whose spacey sound effects seemed a good match for the room's clean, futuristic design. Though the cafe space itself was visually appealing, the acoustics were lacking, so I soon set up camp in the Opera House where impeccable sound and gorgeous lighting provided the perfect accompaniment for The Antlers' brooding, atmospheric sound. With the exception of a song or two (including one that was brand new), The Antlers focused on the material from last year's Burst Apart.

With the upstairs cafe running some 20 minutes behind, I regretfully decided to skip Buke & Gass to ensure a prime seat for St. Vincent. While The Antler's multi-layered, methodical sound encouraged me to sink calmly into my plush red seat, I quickly perked up from the first notes of St. Vincent's set. Clad in rock star black, her hair loose and wild, Annie Clark is a force behind the guitar and a charmer at the mic.

Backed by a talented three-piece band, Clark covered a wide array of songs, from a handful of older favorites ("Actor Out of Work" and "Marrow") to a number from last year's excellent Strange Mercy and a cover by The Pop Group ("She Is Beyond Good and Evil"). During "Krocodil," an aggressive new song (that was released as an exclusive 7" for Record Store Day), Clark catapulted off stage and forcefully made her way through the crowd, stepping onto chairs and reaching out to hit people as she made her way. (There's video below.) After fearlessly crowd surfing in the orchestra pit, she managed to end up back in stage at precisely the last moment of the song, and darted off, only to return for a brief encore ("Your Lips are Red").

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Pictures and video from night 1 are here. Night 3 is on the way. Pictures from all the night 2 bands are below, along with video of St. Vincent performing "Krokodil."

Continue reading "Crossing Brooklyn Ferry night 2 review & pics (St. Vincent, Antlers, Tyondai Braxton, Ava Luna, Buke & Gase, and more)"

ESG

Bronx disco-punk legends ESG, who have called it quits a couple times throughout their career, most recently in 2007 only to reunite in 2008, are once again announcing their end as a group. They'll be going out with the appropriately titled Closure LP, which according to their website, became available on March 30. Listen to the track, "I Feel Tonight," from the new album at the band's website. The artwork and tracklist are below.

ESG will play their final NYC show at Le Poisson Rouge on June 7 with a new generation of NYC funk punks Ava Luna (who also recently opened for the Rapture). Tickets are on sale now. Stay tuned for more dates to be announced. The band says, "We will still be touring for awhile and will post all our shows on this site. So when we come your way, please come out and see us because it may be the last time we will be coming your way. I thank you for 33 years of fantastic fan support. We love you all!"

Ava Luna also play BAM in May.

ESG artwork, tracklist, and a stream of ESG's influential first album below...

Continue reading "ESG finally have 'Closure', announce final NYC show"

photos by Chris Doss

The Rapture

Like they did at Bowery Ballroom one night earlier, The Rapture played to a sold out, hometown crowd at Music Hall of Williamsburg on Saturday (4/7). Here are some pictures, opener Ava Luna included. More of them, along with all upcoming Rapture tour dates (next is Coachella), below...

Continue reading "The Rapture played MHOW w/ Ava Luna (pics & more dates)"

Purity Ring @ SXSW 2012 (photo by SRGN)
Purity Ring SXSW

Purity Ring, currently finishing a post-SXSW tour with Neon Indian in NC tonight, will open for Dirty Projectors at Celebrate Brooklyn on 7/10, as with Wye Oak. UPDATE: I'm told these openers are "not 100% confirmed". Tickets are still on sale. The Prospect Park show is still Dirty Projectors' only announced date.

If you're in DC, catch Purity Ring on Thursday at Red Palace with Ava Luna. Ava Luna's next currently scheduled Brooklyn show is at BAM for the National's "Crossing Brooklyn Ferry" fest on 5/4 (single day tickets recently went on sale).

Wye Oak's only other announced show at the moment is the National's ATP in the UK in December.

All tour dates for these bands are listed below...

Continue reading "Purity Ring & Wye Oak opening for Dirty Projectors"

by Andrew Sacher

DOWNLOAD: Ava Luna - "Ice Level" (MP3)

Ava Luna

Brooklyn R&B/indie rock collective Ava Luna released their new record, Ice Level, this week via Infinite Best Recordings. The album continues in the vein of the band's previous work, mixing Motown harmonies, late 70s NYC funk-punk beats, and disco strings into a tightly packed 8-song LP. You can stream the entire thing at their bandcamp and we're also offering the album's title track/second single, "Ice Level," in this post. Download that track above or stream it below.

The band will support the album with a tour which kicks off with a show on Friday (3/2) at Gottscheer Hall in Queens, where Silent Barn will be holding their first in a series of public meetings, where anyone can come and discuss the NYC DIY scene and the future of Silent Barn. Regarding the show, the band has said, "Every time we've finished a record, we've held a release show at the Silent Barn... so for Ice Level, we're proud to celebrate at the first Public Meeting." Twin Sister, who Ava Luna recently wrapped up a tour with, will be special guests at the show.

Ava Luna are also one of the many artists on the just-announced Crossing Brooklyn Ferry lineup, which was curated by Aaron and Bryce Dessner of The National and goes down from May 3 - 5 at BAM. Ava Luna play on May 4, the day that St. Vincent headlines.

All dates and stream below...

Continue reading "Ava Luna release 'Ice Level', kicking off tour at a 'public meeting' in Queens w/ Twin Sister (dates & MP3)"

Crossing Brooklyn Ferry

Remember that Dessner brother-curated festival, "Crossing Brooklyn Ferry," which is happening at BAM from May 3-5? And remember how when we posted the National-curated ATP lineup we suggested (for obvious reasons) that it might hint at the BAM lineup? Well, the lineup is out now, and there are definitely some similarities to that, and also not surprisingly, to the ongoing Ecstatic Music Festival which is great at highlighting the growing mix between indie rock and indie classical that the Dessners are huge fans of and participants in.

The three day Brooklyn Academy of Music festival includes The Antlers, My Brightest Diamond (w/ yMusic), Sharon Van Etten, and Buke and Gase who are all playing ATP, in addition to The Walkmen, St. VIncent, Beirut, Atlas Sound, Tyondai Braxton (formerly of Battles), Oneohtrix Point Never, Caveman, Sinkane, Twin Shadow, Jherek Bischoff, Pat Mahoney and Nancy Whang (DFA DJ set), Ava Luna, and others which are all listed below. As mentioned, the fest also includes the Brooklyn Youth Chorus and the NOW Ensemble.

3-Day Festival Passes go on sale Monday (3/5) to friends of BAM and Tuesday (3/6) to the general public. More details and schedule at the Crossing Brooklyn Ferry website.

Full lineup below...

Continue reading "National-curated BAM Festival lineup announced (Walkmen, St. Vincent, Beirut, Sharon, Antlers, Zs & many more)"

by Bill Pearis

DOWNLOADHowler - I Told You Once (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Fujiya & Miyagi - Ecstatic Dancer (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Dinowalrus - What Now (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Pre War - Out There (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Royal Baths - Darling Divine (MP3)

Howler
Howler

Welcome to the Stop SOPA edition of TWII. Do you know how hard it would be to do this column without free knowledge via the internet? It would be riddled with factual errors. More so!

Minneapolis underage upstarts Howler are in town playing a whole bunch of shows. The onslaught began last night with an in-store at Other Music (their album came out yesterday), and continues with: an early show tonight (January 18) with Happy People andTiberius,  January 19 at Death By Audio with Grooms andClouderJanuary 20 at Cameo Gallery with St. Lucia, and January 21 at Pianos with Dear LionsCemeteries, and The Everymen.

As mentioned, Howler's debut album came out yesterday and is titled America Give Up which kind of feels like a "just try not to like us" dare. Their sound -- a little Strokes, a little Jesus and Mary Chain, a little West Coast garage -- is indeed easy to like, even if there isn't much "new" about it. But the band have no shortage of hooks and a good dose of hard-to-fake attitude. As previously mentioned, ou can stream the whole thing at NPR.

Most of the hype is coming from the UK press who are still enamored with the Vaccines (with whom Howler's toured). I like Howler better than them and am going to make an effort to catch one of their shows this week. You should too, surely you've got one night free this week?

Fujiya & Miyagi
Fujiya & Miyagi

Also in town this week are Fugiya & Miyagi, playing Glasslands on Thursday (1/19) and Mercury Lounge on Saturday (1/21, sold out). The band have a new single out, "Ecstatic Dancer," that you can download at the top of this post. It's the kind of slinky, glammy stomper you could imagine Goldfrapp doing but with David Best's whispery vocals. No album attached to it as far as I can tell so it seems the single supports the tour, not the other way around as usual.

The band are also on the Power, Corruption & Lies Covered CD that comes with the February issue of MOJO, where the entirety of cover stars New Order's second album is covered by the likes of Destroyer, S.C.U.M. and Errors. Fujiya & Miyagi contribute a fairly wrote version of Side Two opener "Your Silent Face." (Stream it below.) The band are a good time live and are equally adept at both Neu!-style motorik and funky Can rhythms as you may already know. My favorite song is still "Ankle Injuries" but I'm looking forward to seeing them tomorrow.

Thursday's Glasslands show is with Zambri, who really impressed me at Glasslands last month, Rarechild and The Golden Filter on DJ duties. For Saturday's show at Merc, openers are Aimes, Jangulaand Dinowalrus.

Dinowalrus
Dinowalrus

Dinowalrus' second album, Best Behavior, is due out March 6 on Old Flame records. If you haven't seen them in a while, the band dropped the dissonance in favor of a sound under the influenced of late '80s Manchester. While that means some danceable tracks, it also means atmospheric rockers like "What Now" which veers closer to The Chameleons or The Sound. You can download it at the top of this post.

Jonathan Wilson
Jonathan Wilson

If you're looking for something a little more mellow, man, perhaps you should check out onetime Eisley bassist (different Jonathan Wilson!) Jonathan Wilson who is here for three shows this week. He's at Mercury Lounge tomorrow (1/19) for an early show and again  on Friday (1/20) for a late show with Quilt), and then hits the Rock Shop on Saturday (1/ 21).

Jonathan Wilson's Gentle Spirit made its way onto many Best of 2011 lists, coming in at #4 on MOJO's year end coverage. Pazz n' Jop notsomuch, only three votes, which landed it in a 21-way tie for #372. Mind you, Wilson's music -- which recalls the heyday of early '70s Laurel Canyon -- is prime fodder for a magazine like MOJO that has a Beatle on the cover at least once a year, but Gentle Spirit is a genuinely gorgeous album that exudes a West Coast vibe even in the coldest New York winter. Spotify users can listen to the album here.

This is the only picture on Pre War's Facebook
Pre War

And finally, for many in New York the phrase "pre war" is code for "not many electric outlets and no sink in the bathroom" but maybe that will change with Pre War the rock band who have dusted themselves off from the recently defunct Conversion Party. Like that band, Pre War traffic in catchy, big-chorused indie rock. Check out "Out There" at the top of this post and you can listen to more at the band's Tumblr.

You can catch Pre War live Thursday (1/19) at Cake Shop where they play with Grand Rapids, Plates of Cake, and Hunny.

That's the big stuff for this week. Day-by-day picks not covered above are below. Fight the power!

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WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 18

Sharon Van Etten is at Mercury Lounge which if you don't have tickets, is sold out. She's got lots more shows coming up, though. Her new album, Tramp, is really good.

continued below...

Continue reading "Howler, Fujiya & Miyagi, Dinowalrus, Pre War, Jonathan Wilson, Royal Baths & more in This Week in Indie"

Ava Luna at BV Holiday Party last month/year (more by Jessica Amaya)
Ava Luna

Wintersleep are going on a short North American tour this month which ends in 2 NYC dates happening on January 24 at Mercury Lounge with Pretty & Nice and January 25 at Glasslands with ARMS and Writer. Tickets for the Mercury show and the Glasslands show are on sale now. All Wintersleep dates are listed below.

Speaking of ARMS, their frontman, Todd Goldstein, is opening for John Roderick (of the Long Winters) at his Mercury Lounge show (1/28), which is three days after ARMS play Glasslands and one day after John Roderick opens for Aimee Mann at her sold out MHOW show. Tickets for the Mercury Lounge show are still available.

In other Glasslands/Mercury Lounge news, Har Mar Superstar has a few shows announced including Glasslands on March 7 with Rewards. Tickets are on sale now.

Rewards were also just announced as the opener for the second School of Seven Bells show at Mercury Lounge (3/1). Their record release show (happening at the same venue on 2/28) sold out and Tickets for the new show go on sale Friday (1/6) at noon.

Both Rewards and School of Seven Bells also DJ in Brooklyn next Friday (1/13) at Cameo Gallery with CREEP, who is also DJing. Doors are at midnight for this late show, which takes place after Radical Dads play the same venue a few hours earlier. Radical Dads recently played a great set at our Brooklyn Bazaar Holiday Party.

The day before that Cameo Gallery show, NewVillager and Avan Lava play Mercury Lounge (1/12). Tickets are available.

Avan Lava is not to be confused with Ava Luna, who just played a BV Holiday Party with Widowspeak and Twin Sister, the latter of which they're heading out on tour with later this month. That tour doesn't include any NYC dates but Ava Luna just announced their own NYC show happening shortly after the tour ends at Mercury Lounge on February 24 with Celestial Shore, Darlings, and Cindy Lou Gooden. Tickets for that show go on sale Friday (1/13) at noon with an AmEx presale starting Wednesday (1/11) at noon.

You can catch Darlings in NYC even sooner when they headline Glasslands on Thursday (1/12) with The Suzan, Fabric, and DAYTONA (mems. of Harlem and Wild Yaks). Tickets for that show are available.

Friends play Cameo on January 24th.

Faris (of the Horrors) and Honor (of Cerebral Ballzy) both DJ cameo this Friday night (tomorrow, 1/6).

More Wintersleep & Har Mar dates below...

Continue reading "Wintersleep, ARMS, Ava Luna, Avan Lava, Radical Dads, Har Mar Superstar, NewVillager, Friends & other upcoming shows"

photos by Jessica Amaya

Twin Sister @ Bowery Ballroom
Twin Sister

You saw one set of pictures from this BrooklynVegan Holiday Party. Here's a second. More shots of Twin Sister, Widowspeak & Ava Luna @ Bowery Ballroom, below...

Continue reading "Twin Sister, Widowspeak & Ava Luna @ Bowery Ballroom (pics part 2)"

photos by Amanda Hatfield

"Thank you The Bowery Presents, Brooklyn Vegan , Twin Sister, WIDOWSPEAK for an amazing night full of holiday cheer and Mexican beer. NYC is the best town in the whole land" - Ava Luna

"So, so happy to see Widowspeak tonight. They are a real dream." - Jaime Chu

Twin Sister @ Bowery Ballroom
Twin Sister

"The five-piece specializes in a mellow style of spaced-out disco, the likes of which might be at home on an easy-listening station--on Mars. Equal parts soothing, chilling, ethereal and danceable, the music contains a unique otherworldly quality, largely due to singer Andrea Estella's singular voice, which ranges from smooth and velvety to a high-pitched coo." [House List]
Twin Sister headlined our third holiday party in a week, at Bowery Ballroom on Saturday (12/17) with Widowspeak and Ava Luna. The sold out Saturday night show was night after we hosted Fucked Up and others at Brooklyn Bazaar and four days after the Anna Calvi show at Music Hall of Williamsburg. Like at Music Hall, we hosted a charity raffle for Toys for Tots. Congrats to all the winners, and thanks to all who donated!

We posted a bit about Widowspeak's set already. And The Girl Rag Doll said:

"Soooo good! The both fo them! I only heard about Widowspeak when I heard they were playing with Twin Sister, but I have been listening to them non stop ever since. And they are from Brooklyn, so even better! Twin Sister was amazing as always, Andrea even gave a little birthday shout out to me :)"
Happy Birthday Emily! More pictures and videos from the whole show HERE, and below...

Continue reading "BV Holiday Party pics: Twin Sister, Widowspeak & Ava Luna (part 1)"

By Bill Pearis

DOWNLOAD: Parlovr - Heaven/Hell (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Atlas Sound - Terra Incognita (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Atlas Sound- Te Amo (MP3)

Parlovr at M for Montreal 2011
Parlovr/MforMontreal

It's that time of year again, so let's sing it up real pretty. Are we all in the spirit? Better be, because there's a zillion holiday parties going on this weekend, including two thrown by this very blog you are currently reading. How these parties differ from the shows we go to the rest of the year? Only a Scrooge would ask such a question. But to answer it: there's maybe more strand lights. And some Christmas songs thrown in sparsely by DJs or as covers by the bands playing. And some snowflakey sweaters. Whatever you call it, there's lot of great music to go see this weekend. Here's some of it.

Montreal's Parlovr are visiting, playing two shows. Tonight (12/15) they play the Popgun Holiday Party at Glasslands and then tomorrow (12/16) at Mercury Lounge with Shout Out Louds offshoot thing Serenades.

I'm on record as being a fan of this trio who I most recently saw at this year's M for Montreal. I'm not sure any of their records have quite captured the band's live energy, which is why you should go see them. But the recorded version of my favorite song, "Hell/Heaven," comes pretty close. You can download it above. Live, there's lots of flying hair (via singer/guitarists Alex and Jeremy) and flying limbs (lanky drummer Louis) that fits well with Parlovr's spiky indie rock. The band have recorded a holiday track called "Spike the Eggnog" which judging from the video (you can watch below) the spiking involves something much stronger than whiskey.

The Popgun Holiday Party tonight looks to be a good time, with Bell and TWII-faves North Highlands playing as well. There's also a "+ Special Guest" listed as well, no idea who that might be but the Popgun folks usually don't throw around that phrase too lightly.

Serenades

Tomorrow's show is with Serenades which is a Swedish super-duo consisting of Adam Olenius from Shout Out Louds and Markus Krunegård of Laakso. Their album Criminal Heaven is out next year in the U.S. and is chock-full of sparkling pop that seems aimed directly at the charts. It's slicker than Shout Out Louds (Laakso were pretty shiny, though they sang in Swedish) but still maintains that sharp melodic sense and shaggy, sad-eyed lyrical bent. You can download a track at the top of this post. Serenades also play tonight (12/15) at Knitting Factory.

Brooklyn Bazaar
BK Bazaar

There's also the Brooklyn Night Bazaar which runs tonight through Saturday. The enormous space (40,000 square feet!), the layout of which was based on the set of Lars Von Triers' Dogville (!!!), is a holiday shopping, eating, drinking and live music extravaganza as you have probably already heard. Tonight (12/15) is James Murphy DJing, along with Poolside, the Crystal Ark Party Machine and Midnight Magic. Saturday night (12/17) is The Hold Steady, Titus Andronicus and Wakey! Wakey!

Friday (12/16) is the BrooklynVegan Presents night with a SPIN Album of 2011 winners Fucked Up, plus Dom, Big Troubles, Caged Animals, and Radical Dads. Frankie Rose and myself will be spinning tunes before the bands start and between sets. And only $10, so that's only two bucks a band. What a bargain! Tickets will be available at the door too. I am DJing starting at 5PM, Frankie will be there from 6PM and bands start at 7PM, with Radical Dads up first. (Then Caged Animals, Big Troubles, Dom, and Fucked Up.) If you're coming, do make an effort to get there in time for them, they're awesome. As are all the bands on the bill I think. Shop, eat, rock out, eat and shop some more, rinse repeat. Say hi.

Frankie Rose
Frankie Rose

In addition to DJing our party tomorrow, Frankie Rose is also playing an acoustic set at Glasslands on Saturday (12/17) as part of a Jonathan Toubin benefit that also features Xray Eyeballs, K-Holes and The Stalkers. Frankie Rose's new album, Interstellar, is out in February and I think will surprise a lot of people. She is definitely out of the garage on this one, ditching the reverb and embracing synthesizers, jangly guitars and her inner pop star. Like a lot of folks this year, The Wake seems to be an influence. Fans of Craft Spells are gonna like it.

As previously mentioned, Frankie will debut her new record and new band at the Knitting Factory on February 21.

And to wrap up BV holiday party related items, Saturday's fest with Twin Sister, Widowspeak and Ava Luna is sold out! Hope you got tickets! If you're going, we're raffling off a load of cool prizes -- like every Domino release of 2011 -- with all proceeds benefiting Toys for Tots.

Atlas Sound
Atlas Sound

And last but not least we've got Atlas Sound here for two shows this weekend:The Bell House on Saturday (12/17, tickets still available) and Bowery Ballroom on Sunday (12/18, sold out). Andrew Sacher wrote about Atlas Sound's new album Paralax a few weeks ago which I'm gonna quote:

The flow of the album subtly works in the slower, more ambient cuts to space out the relatively high amount (for an Atlas Sound record) of pop standouts. Like many pop experimentalists before him, Bradford Cox has mastered the art of leaving his own weird touch on even the simplest tune. This comes across most strongly on "Mona Lisa," a re-recording of a track that appeared on his Bedroom Databank collection. The song is carried by the sort of upbeat acoustic guitar rock that Bowie experimented with on Hunky Dory, and Bradford sings with a fragile falsetto that brings to mind Lennon's "#9 Dream."
I'll add that Parallax has a post-2AM vibe to it and some of Cox's best songs yet. It also reminds me, a bit, of Spoon too.

That's the big stuff. Some more picks, day-by-day, follow.

Continue reading "Parlovr, Fucked Up, Dom, Frankie Rose, Atlas Sound, Serenades, Jonathan Toubin & more in This Week in Indie"

by Andrew Sacher

Twin Sister at Mercury Lounge in September (more by Jessica Amaya)
Twin Sister

Four days after our BV Holiday Party with Anna Calvi at MHOW (12/13) (tickets) we'll be presenting a second Holiday Party at Bowery Ballroom (12/17) with Twin Sister, Widowspeak, and Ava Luna. Tickets for the show are on sale now. And note that both BV Holiday shows are only $8! More details TBA.

The 12/17 show is currently the last show of 2011 for Twin Sister and Ava Luna before they kick off a tour together in January. All dates for this tour are listed below.

Balam Acab, who made his NYC debut at LPR last night (11/17), recently remixed Twin Sister's "Kimmi in a Rice Field," off their debut LP In Heaven. Balam does a great job of alienating Andrea Estella's vocals and creating ghostly atmospheres with his deep ambient beats. Balam also recently gave a similar treatment to Lana Del Rey's "Video Games," like Jamie Woon did just before him. You can stream both of these remixes below, along with the video for the original version of Twin Sister's "Kimmi in a Rice Field."

All dates, song streams and video below...

Continue reading "Twin Sister playing BV Holiday Party #2 w/ Widowspeak, remixed by Balam Acab, touring w/ Ava Luna (dates)"

by Bill Pearis

DOWNLOAD: Quilt - Penobska Oakwalk (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Quilt - Cowboys In The Void (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Lilac - So Young (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Total Slacker - Secret VHS Collection (MP3)

Quilt

2011 is winding down, holidays are on the horizon and bands, for the most part, stop touring till the new year. Not quite yet, but things are starting to slow down significantly. Which is a good chance to check out local acts if you're still itching to go see some live music this weekend.

Quilt are not local but it's a short trip down from Boston they're making to play Glasslands tonight (11/9), the record release party for their debut LP which came out on Mexican Summer this week. Like a lot of music on the label, there's a laid-back psych quality to the music and, as Andrew Sacher noted previously, Quilt have an undeniable late '60s Haight-Ashbury vibe. Maybe a few less flowers in their hair, but it's there. This kind of stuff also evokes New Zealand comparisons too whether they've ever listened to the Clean or Tall Dwarves before or not. It's a terrific record and you can download two tracks off it at the top of this post and the whole thing is up on Spotify. I heard good things about Quilt's shows at CMJ too.

Lilac

It's a pretty stacked bill tonight at Glasslands. Also playing are San Francisco's Lilac who appear to be jetting in just for this show. They've also got a psych-rock thing going on, but it's filtered more through '80s UK acts like Primal Scream, the Bunnymen and the Stone Roses. (Some Velocity Girl in there too maybe.) Organ-heavy and danceable. Lilac released their first EP over the summer which is pretty damn good and you can download the single "So Young" at the top of this post and watch the video below.

Also playing are instrument-destroying, '90s-loving locals Total Slacker who released their debut album, Thrashin', not too long ago. It's a little too '90s at times -- I'm surprised they don't have an Angelfire website -- but I can't deny it's a pretty fun record. The band they remind me the most of, and this is an obscure reference, is late '80s band Christmas who later morphed into Combustible Edison. There's a similar melodic and harmony style to what they did and Total Slacker do, not to mention a love of psychedelics. You can download album cut "Secret VHS Collection" at the top of this post (and watch the video below).

Still more bands playing tonight's Glasslands show: Dive, who seem to be playing every show everywhere these days, and Royal Baths.

I'm Turning Into

Tomorrow night (11/10) at Union Hall is a band who doesn't get enough attention. I'm Turning Into have been around for a couple years, having moved up from the DC area and quickly ingratiating themselves into the Bushwick indie community. (Two of them became My Teenage Stride's rhythm section what seemed like almost immediately.) The band's Parcel of Marbles was released on cassette (and digitally) this summer and is appropriately low-fi given the release format. More in a Robert Pollard kind of way, than the more recent garage scene that people associate with the low-fi tag. I'm Turning Into have plenty of pop smarts and its eminently likeable. You can stream the whole of Parcel of Marbles at the bottom of this post.

Also playing are Pre-War which is some sort of Conversion Party offshoot, and The Thieves.

ARMS

ARMS released their new album Summer Skills this week and they play a record release party for it this Friday (11/11) at Glasslands. Earlier this year, Todd Goldstein described the record as a "sort of sci-fi breakup album" and that comes through, I think, even without focusing on the lyrics. The fat synths give the record an epic, widescreen quality. You can download three tracks from Summer Skills via ARMS' Bandcamp site and get the whole record from your digital retailer of choice. Physical release is still TBD.

Also playing: TWII faves Hospitality, Franz Nicolay and The Building.

Moonmen on the Moon, Man

And finally, Friday is November 11 which makes it 11/11/11 which is kinda cool and might "mean something" to numerologists. (Though not as much as November 11, 1111 did. That was a party.) To the folks at Cake Shop, it's an excuse to have 11 bands play in one night. You might expect an appropriate cover charge, but it's actually half that. Yes $5.50 gets you in, probably the first time ever the door will have had to deal with coins which should make the door person real happy. Amongst the bands playing are Cake Shop house band Moonmen on the Moon, Man who have been gigging around a lot lately and have become pretty good. If you like early '90s indie like Eleventh Dream Day or Madder Rose, check 'em out. There's a whole bunch of songs up on their Bandcamp page to listen to.

Cake Shop is still looking for that 11th band (or maybe its a surprise guest?) but the rest of the line-up is American Darlings, Celestial Shore, Mainland, Birdhand, Young Heel, Corsair, Edelweiss, Night Manager and Normally Important.

That's it for this week. A few day-by-day picks follow for shows not covered above.

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THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 10

It's week two of Miniboone's Thursday's in November residency. If you go tonight you get a free copy of their just-released debut album, On Miniboone Mountain. You can download a couple tracks right now at their Bandcamp.

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Continue reading "Quilt, Lilac, Total Slacker, ARMS, I'm Turning Into, Moonmen on the Moon Man and more in This Week in Indie"

photos by Tim Griffin

Talib Kweli @ Mohawk Friday night
Talib Kweli

As previously mentioned, Black Star will return for a pair of dates at Best Buy Theater, and on the same night. Saturday December 3rd will see Yasiin and Talib Kweli perform their only LP in its entirety at an 8:00 show and an 11:30 show. Tickets are on sale for both. Talib Kweli joined Res and band to form Idle Warship, at the BrooklynVegan Day Party on Saturday (10/22) before heading to the Duck Down vs Blacksmith showcase at Music Hall of Williamsburg next door. Pictures from the BV party are on the way, but we have a set of pictures in this post from the show Talib Kweli played at the Mohawk one night earlier (yes he was in Texas playing a show after midnight the night before he headlined our show at 5pm in Brooklyn!).

In related news, Wu-Tang Clan (billed as with Method Man, RZA, GZA, Raekwon, Ghostface Killah, U-God, Inspectah Deck, and Masta Killa) will also head to Best Buy Theater in the coming months, hitting the venue on December 18th as part of a string of live dates that will also include Starland Ballroom in Sayreville, NJ on 12/15 and Northern Lights in Clifton Park, NY on 12/17. Tickets are on sale for all dates.

Inspektah Deck will also HEADLINE his own show at 285 Kent on 11/4, joining Ava Luna, DJ Dog Dick, and a DJ set from WFMU'S Marty McSorley. Tickets are on sale. The show is meant to wave goodbye to Babycastles, a collective of independent gaming designers that built an arcade inside Silent Barn.

In other "hip hop at Best Buy Theater" news, Jadakiss, Lloyd Banks, Juelz Santana, Fabolous, Meek Mills, French Montana, and Red Cafe will team for a Funkmaster Flex Presents event at the venue on 11/24. Tickets are on sale.

J Cole plays there tonight (10/25).

Talib Kweli's show Friday night at the Mohawk in Austin, TX was with G-Eazy and Franchize. More pictures from that 10/21 performance, and Wu Tang dates, below...

Continue reading "Wu-Tang Clan tour dates, Talib Kweli live pics & stuff"

photos & videos by Jessica Amaya

Twin Sister @ Mercury Lounge
Twin Sister

Twin Sister played the second show of their current tour at Mercury Lounge in NYC on Thursday night (9/29), with Ava Luna (Factory Floor played the same venue earlier that night). Here are some pictures and videos. They continue below...

Continue reading "Twin Sister & Ava Luna @ Mercury Lounge (pics & video)"

Twin Sister @ Bowery Ballroom on 9/19 (more by Diana Wong)
Twin Sister

Twin Sister's previously mentioned tour now begins at Union Pool tonight (9/28). Lost Boy? (who just played Glasslands) opens the 9pm show ($10, no advanced tickets). All tour dates, including Mercury Lounge tomorrow (9/29) with Ava Luna, and a brand new video for "Kimmi in a Rice Field", below...

Continue reading "Twin Sister kicking off tour at just-added UNION POOL SHOW TONIGHT (dates & new video)"

photos by Diana Wong

Great Lake Swimmers @ the U.S. Open
Great Lake Swimmers
Great Lake Swimmers

"Serena Williams failed to put a storybook finish on her injury comeback and instead decided on Sunday to once again turn center court at the U.S. Open into a vulgar outlet for her frustrations.

Williams, whose outburst in the U.S. Open semi-final two years ago cost her the match, is praised for her power-hitting and fighting qualities on the court but has also come to be reviled for a lack of self control toward officials.

Her latest incident, which came during a 6-2 6-3 loss to Australian Sam Stosur in the final, featured repeated outbursts toward a chair umpire who reversed a point against her for shouting "Come On!" while the ball was in play.

"If you ever see me walking down the hall, look the other way because you're out of control. You're out of control. You're a hater and unattractive inside, the 29-year-old told the chair umpire during a changeover. "Code violation for this? I expressed myself, we're in America last time I checked. Don't look at me. Don't look my way."" [Reuters]

Wye Oak kicked off a week+ of musical performances at the US Open that included outdoor sets by Great Lake Swimmers (who also played City Winery last week), Ava Luna (who are heading out on tour with Toro y Moi), Miniature Tigers and others. You saw pictures of Wye Oak already. Pictures from the rest of the week continue below...

Continue reading "Great Lake Swimmers, Ava Luna, Serena Williams & others played the U.S. Open (pics) "

by Andrew Sacher

Toro y Moi at Pitchfork Fest (more by Dominick Mastrangelo)
Toro y Moi

Toro y Moi is releasing the Freaking Out EP on Tuesday (9/13) via Carpark. The EP is the followup to his full length, Underneath the Pine, which came out earlier this year on the same label. You can grab two tracks, "All Alone" and "Saturday Love" (an Alexander O'Neal & Cherelle cover), in exchange for your email address below. Though both will remind you of the disco-y pop of Underneath the Pine, the introductory synth frills on "All Alone" tell you right away that Freaking Out isn't an EP of leftover album tracks.

Toro y Moi's previously announced tour begins this week and hits Webster Hall on September 14 with Unknown Mortal Orchestra and Ava Luna. Tickets are still available. All dates are listed below.

We're also giving away a signed vinyl copy of Underneath the Pine and a pair of tickets to the Webster Hall show. Details on how to win, along with MP3 widgets, album art, tracklist and updated tour dates below...

Continue reading "Toro y Moi kicking off tour, releasing EP -- 2 MP3s, updated dates & a chance to win tix to Webster Hall & a signed album"

Great Lake Swimmers @ SXSW 2011 (more by Dominick Mastrangelo)
great Lake Swimmers

The private Matt & Kim/Girl Talk show wasn't the only musical portion of this year's U.S. Open which is now underway in NY. Tennis fans will also get to enjoy sets by indie rock bands like Wye Oak (9/1), Miniature Tigers (9/2), Ava Luna (9/3), Great Lake Swimmers (9/4), and others through the competition's September 11th end date.

For Wye Oak the tennis show is a one-off date before they begin touring with Yo La Tengo and the National, and then Okkervil River, and then Explosions in the Sky. All dates are listed below.

For Great Lake Swimmers, it's one of four NY shows, one of which is at City Winery on September 5th. All dates are listed below...

Continue reading "Wye Oak, Great Lake Swimmers & others playing the U.S. Open (and other shows)"

The Hold Steady at Fun Fun Fun Fest 2010 (more)
The Hold Steady

Last month, we announced that Truck America is returning to the Catskills in September (the 9th through the 11th) and will be headlined by The Hold Steady and Okkervil River. The only other confirmed bands at the time were Ra Ra Riot and Wye Oak. The lineup has since been updated to include Fruit Bats, Vetiver, The Felice Brothers, CItay, Gary Higgins, Lady Lamb the Beekeeper, Takka Takka, Hospitality, The Low Anthem and others. Check out the full list below. Early bird tickets are still on sale.

For The Low Anthem, it's one of many dates they just announced including one at Terminal 5 with Iron & Wine.

Speaking of The Hold Steady, frontman Craig Finn posted to his Tumblr that he's making a solo album:

"I'm in Austin TX for a few weeks. Making a record. Staying in a friend's guest house. Got here yesterday. So far so good. I'll be tracking the progress here."
He has also been tracking his progress on the Tumblr.

Check out the full Truck America lineup update below...

Continue reading "Truck America expands lineup, Craig Finn working on solo LP"

photos by Jessica Amaya, wordsy by Rachel Kowal

Twin Sister @ Music Hall of Williamsburg
Twin Sister

The last two nights of Northside were decent, if not a bit predictable. Though I was curious about Kelly Pratt (Arcade Fire/Beirut)'s new band Bright Moments (they played their first show at the Luaka Bop showcase), I decided to play it safe on Saturday night and headed over to the Music Hall of Williamsburg where I was familiar with the last three artists on the bill.

Somehow, the venue was actually running ahead of schedule, leaving me with only one song from the peppy Brooklyn collective Ava Luna. Luckily, I got my fix of group vocals from the next band, London's Allo Darlin'. The mood in the room (both on stage and off) was lively. As if attempting to match the vibrant performance, a number of people near the front of the floor danced enthusiastically (or rather, jumped up and down) for the entirety of the set. The band dedicated one song to Clarence Clemons who passed away earlier that night.

Twin Sister rounded out the evening. With vocalist Andrea Estella's shifting persona, you never really know what you're going to get. This time, Estella was decked out in a long white wig, oversized glasses (sans lenses), and a demure white button-up blouse, complete with matching bowtie. Whether the changing aesthetic is driven by a shyness or confidence is unclear, but it seems to be in keeping with her dramatic and affected vocals.

Toward the mid-section of their set, Twin Sister showcased a handful of songs from their upcoming album, due out in September on Domino. With the combination of charming low-key songs and funkier electro-pop songs, like the new single "Bad Street," the Brooklyn group can sometimes feel a bit schizophrenic to me, but they handled the shifting tempos in their set like pros. After a few punchier songs, nearly everyone in the band cleared the stage save for Eric Cardona and Estella, who stayed on to play a couple of their quieter and more intimate songs, including the lovely "Nectarine" and one from their upcoming album. Far from making the audience lose interest, these were the portions of the show that seemed to garner the most applause.

Mount Eerie @ St. Cecilia's Church (this photo by Michael Barron)
Spectre Folk

After a string of nights traipsing between venues and navigating the particularly unkind MTA service changes, Northside concluded where it began for me - in St. Cecilia's Church.

Though it was definitely Mount Eerie that sold me on the show, one of the biggest surprises of the long weekend was the first opener, Wyrd Visions. The set-up was simple - just a guy and his guitar, but within seconds of starting to play, the crowd was locked in a silent reverence.

With his hair slicked back and white collar shirt, Colin Bergh serenaded crowd with his long, melodious instrumental interludes and soothing vocals. Though I had never heard his music before, it somehow seemed both comfortingly familiar and organic. What better opener for Mount Eerie than a man who sings of things like ghosts and nature? The setting of the church only added to Bergh's stark mystique.

Up next was Nicholas Krgovich who played his own set before joining Phil Elverum for the main act. In his SADE t-shirt, Krgovich paced around the small space, clutching two mics and singing over samples of sultry saxes and hip hop beats. After a few songs, he was joined by Katie Eastburn who lent her vocal talents for a handful of songs, including a cover of the Prefab Sprout song, "Doo Wop in Harlem."

By the time Mount Eerie began, the church had filled out nicely. As a longtime Phil Elverum fan, I was eager to learn what had made the set list, but from a brief conversation with Elverum before the show, I knew not to expect anything too old. The show began and ended with songs from the darker and heavier album Wind's Poem ("Wind Speaks" and "Stone's Ode," respectively). Sandwiched in the middle were even newer songs that Elverum told me hadn't yet been recorded.

Even though he didn't delve too far back into the discography, I was still on the edge of my seat for every song... and yes, a bit heart broken that there was no encore. Whether a product of my ever diminishing attention span or the quickly changing music scene, much of what I listen to has a pitifully short shelf life. Elverum's music is one of the only things that I've held onto year after year, even as he turned in his hushed, lo-fi recordings and ventured into more metal territory. In stark contrast to the "ironic" bullshit that seems to drive some of today's trends, there is something in Elverum's steady voice and calm, down-to-earth demeanor that deeply resonates with me and reminds me why I fell in love with music in the first place.

My only gripe of the evening (apart from the brevity of Elverum's set, of course) is that I didn't have enough money to purchase both The Glow, pt. 2 on vinyl and some music from Wyrd Visions.

---

No mmore pictures from the Mount Eeerie show (which happened at the same time as YACHT and Deervana), but more pictures from Twin Sister/Allo Darlin, below...

Continue reading "Twin Sister, Allo Darlin', Mount Eerie, Wyrd Visions & more (Northside Fest pics & review)"

DOWNLOAD: Secret Cities - "Love Crime" (MP3)

Pujol @ a BV party @ SXSW (more by Amanda Hatfield)
Pujol

"We'll start by letting Daniel Pujol tell you about his debut LP for Infinity Cat: "The X File On Main St. LP stylistically focuses on Nashville and draws from my work in MEEMAW and Saigon Baby/Wizardz. It is an aesthetic and conceptual assemblage of a lot of the recording and narrative ideas I've experimented with since 2007, but all at once. X File is a record for and about everything around in Nashville since I moved here in 2006. Ben Todd of Nashville's Dead, Dillon "Angel Baby" Watson of D. Watusi, and Wez Traylor of Natural Child and MEEMAW play on it. Their science keeps me honest; the truth is way, way, out there.""
[Infinity Cat]
Pujol's new album is out on Jeff The Brotherhood's Infinitay Cat label TODAY (6/14)

Pujol are on tour with Secret Cities. Both bands, both with new releases, are making their way to Toronto for NXNE, but meanwhile are in NYC for two shows. These dates are tonight (6/14) at Death By Audio with Dream Diary and Little Gold and tomorrow (6/15) at Cake Shop with Ava Luna.

Pujol and Secret Cities play NXNE together at Wrongbar on June 17 with Ty Segall and Julianna Barwick. Ty Segall is also on the lineup of the BV/M For Montreal 'Bruise Cruise' one day later.

Pujol are also playing the Sled Island festival in Calgary, AB on June 24-25 with Deer Tick, Dinosaur Feathers, Crocodiles, The Muffs and many others.

Ava Luna also play some dates in September with Toro y Moi including Webster Hall.

Secret Cities recently released the album Strange Hearts via Western Vinyl. Check out th3 MP3 of "Love Crimes" above, and the video for "Always Friends" off that album along with all tour dates below...

Continue reading "Secret Cities & Pujol released stuff, are on tour, in NYC now, on way to NXNE & other dates (MP3 & dates)"

photos by Kyle Dean Reinford

DOWNLOAD: Little Dragon - "Nightlight (Unknown Mortal Orchestra Remix) (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Unknown Mortal Orchestra - "How Can U Luv Me" (MP3)

UMO @ Glasslands
Unknown Mortal Orchestra

Unknown Mortal Orchestra headlined Glasslands on 6/4. Headless Horseman, Balkans, and Fort Lean rounded out the rest of the bill. Despite some gear issues, UMO played an hour long set that concluded with "How Can U Luv Me" to a relatively full crowd. UMO is currrently prepping to release their self-titled debut on Fat Possum on 6/21. Stream three songs at the label site and download one above along with a remix the band did for Little Dragon.

The Glasslands show was one of two NYC dates for UMO, who played Webster Hall with their tour-mates Portugal The Man the night before. They'll return both venues in September while on tour with Toro Y Moi who headlines Webster Hall on 9/14. Ava Luna is also on the bill and tickets are still available. One day later, 9/15, UMO return to Glasslands for another headlining show. Tickets are on sale for that too.

UMO also has a bunch of dates scheduled with Yuck.. All dates and more pictures from Glasslands below...

Continue reading "Unknown Mortal Orchestra played Glasslands (pics), touring with Toro y Moi, playing Glasslands again (dates)"

Laura Stevenson at MHOW in February (more by Andrew St. Clair)
Laura Stevenson

Annual, all ages, Brooklyn DIY music festival Hillstock takes place at 285 Kent Ave on June 3, 106 Emerson Place on June 4 (free admission), and 402 1/2 Park Avenue on June 5. The lineup features a number of local mainstays including So So Glos, Eskalators, Terror Pigeon Dance Revolt!, Ava Luna, and Laura Stevenson (solo) in addition to many lesser known names. Saturday also features a special appearance by Grand Wizzard Theodore. Full lineup and poster below.

Continue reading "Hillstock this weekend (3-day DIY Brooklyn music fest lineup)"

Toro Y Moi at Bowery Ballroom (more by Toby Tenenbaum)
Toro Y Moi

Shortly after enjoying a relatively leisurely summer compared to his year so far (SXSW, Bowery Ballroom, Mercury Lounge) , Toro Y Moi will hit the road after Labor Day for a string of U.S. dates that will include a stop at Webster Hall on 9/14 with Ava Luna. Tickets for Chazwick Bundick's biggest NYC show yet go on sale at noon on Friday (5/20).

Toro Y Moi welcomed the Underneath The Pine LP in February, and will follow it up with the Still Sound Remix 12" via Amazing Sounds on June 13.

Toro Y Moi recently made a mixtape featuring awesome names like King Tubby, Dorothy Ashby, Ennio Morricone, and Goblin. In related news, Goblin's Claudio Simonetti will play Santos Party House on May 24th as part of Daemonia, his metal band that updates classic songs by Goblin. They'll be joined by Wolf Eyes and tickets are still available.

All tour dates and some video is below.

Continue reading "Toro Y Moi announces tour dates (Webster Hall included) & new 12" +++ Daemonia playing Santos w/ Wolf Eyes"