Entries tagged with: Belle and Sebastian
"Belle & Sebastian have good luck with weather, actually," remarked Stuart Murdoch three song's into his band's set on the Williamsburg Waterfront. "We've got God on our side." Murdoch was being cheeky but we were all praying -- or crossing our fingers -- that Tropical Storm Nicole would hold off long enough to let Belle & Sebastian make it through their show. The heavens never opened up, making for sticky but a highly enjoyable evening with one of the most genuinely charming bands on the planet.
This is a far different band than the one that shyly made their shambolic American debut at the Angel Orensanz Center at CMJ 1997. Belle and Sebastian know how to do big outdoor shows right, and Murdoch has turned into the kind of funny, charismatic frontman who has the crowd eating out of his hand the entire time. He joked about the percentage of dudes in the audience ("if it gets above 60% I quit"), and threw out autographed footballs to kids in the audience. "That last pass was from something we call 'rugby' which is superior to your American football."
Murdoch also invited some audience members onstage to clap for "There's Too Much Love" and "The Boy with the Arab Strap," including one dude who took the opportunity to unleash his inner Jarvis/Morrissey, clearly loving the spotlight. I think the Secret Service woulda flagged the guy as a threat; here Murdoch just laughed and let him dance and shake the tambourine. He also gave them all medals. "It's like the Indie Olympics!"
The 20-song set was a nice mix of old favorites with only four from the band's forthcoming Write About Love. There was a string section, which had me hoping we might get "Waking Up to Us" which didn't happen, but we did get the Tigermilk gem "We Rule the School," b-side "The Loneliness of a Middle Distance Runner," "The Boy with the Arab Strap" and four songs from If You're Feeling Sinister.
There was also "Step Into My Office Baby" (which I think the whole crowd thought was going to be "White Collar Boy" at first), the Thin Lizzy-esque "I'm a Cuckoo" and "Piazza, New York Catcher" from Dear Catastrophe Waitress and "Another Sunny Day" and "Sukie in the Graveyard" from The Life Pursuit. (I still haven't heard them do "The Blues are Still Blue.") Stevie Jackson's sole number of the night was Write About Love's "I'm Not Living in the Real World" which he enlisted the crowd's help for the "o0h ooh" chorus.
With the threat of rain, some bands might be antsy but the band never seemed to pay it any mind. By midset, I don't think the audience did either. It was a bad night for hair, but a great one for memorable shows. If you'd told me in January that two of my favorite concerts would be big outdoor productions I'd have scoffed. But between Pavement last week and Belle & Sebastian last night, I find it hard to believe anything will top them.
I missed most of opener Teenage Fanclub's set -- got there in time to hear "Sparky's Dream" and "The Concept" -- but I'd seen play a killer set earlier in the week at Bowery Ballroom. It didn't seem like the Sound Gods were doing them any favors, their signature harmonies muffled in the wind and humidity.
Setlists for Belle and Sebastian and Teenage Fanclub, plus lots more pictures below...
After an opening set by Teenage Fanclub, Belle & Sebastian played a rain-free, two hour set at the outdoor venue known as Williamsburg Waterfront in Brooklyn last night (9/30). A full review with pictures is coming soon, but in the meantime check out some Big Ass Lens video of the two-song encore, and a blurry picture of the setlist, below...
"Not to be dramatic but Chavez is kind of blowing me away. Also, brodeo up in Parkside." - gillianmae
"look, if you were not at the chavez show at parkside lounge last night, you were somewhere not good enough. and that's final. #chavez" - coolingpie
"Holy Cobra is Chavez really playing at Parkside Lounge right now?
Anybody there?" - Oksana Baiul
"Chavez show ruled. So glad I paid hundreds to fly to Vegas instead of $7 at Parkside Lounge #oppositeofthat" -uhhAnnie
Chavez @ Parkside Lounge, 9/29/2010 (photo by Jen Barzyk)
Thank you to the helpful people who pointed out that Chavez were playing a secret show at Parkside Lounge in NYC last night (9/29). It was a warm up for the (much more expensive) Matador 21 Festival happening in Las Vegas this weekend.
If you missed it, and you can't make it to Vegas, don't fret. The Vegas sets by Chavez, along with Pavement, Sonic Youth, Belle & Sebastian, Guided By Voices, Liz Phair and others will be streamed live (and on repeat) courtesy of MySpace Music at myspace.com/matador21.
The full stream schedule, Chavez's NYC setlist, and a few more pictures (thanks Jen and Quilty) including one of the setlist (which replaces parts of song names with "Marsh"), below...
by Bill Pearis
Like veteran indie bands from Glasgow? Want to see them live for free? Read on.
If the $50 price tag of this Thursday's (9/30) Belle and Sebastian show with Teenage Fanclub at the Williamsburg Waterfront has been scaring you off, we're giving away a pair of tickets to the show. Details below.
We're also giving away THREE pairs of tickets to tomorrow night's (9/28) Teenage Fanclub/The Clean show at Bowery Ballroom. Details below.
Wait there's more. We're also giving away TWO pairs of tickets to see The Vaselines on October 6 at Webster Hall. Details below.
The waterfront show on Thursday is the kickoff to Belle and Sebastian's tour. Fellow Glaswegians Teenage Fanclub are opening. Tickets are still available. Let's hope the current rainy forceast changes by then. The band also performs on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon on Wednesday (9/29) night. After the Waterfront show, the band head's to Las Vegas for this weekend's Matador 21 extravaganza, make a short detour into Mexico, and will then backtrack east across North America.
The band's eighth album, Write About Love, will be out October 12 and is Belle & Sebastian's first in nearly five years. A decade and a half into their career, you pretty much know what to expect from Stuart Murdoch, Stevie Jackson and the rest of the band, but since 2001's Dear Catastrophe Waitress the group's quality control has been pretty high. (2006's The Life Pursuit was especially good I thought.) Write About Love is another lovely record in the band's cannon. The vinyl comes with a bonus 7" containing two songs not on the album.
There are a couple of surprising guest vocalists. Carey Mulligan, Oscar-nominated star of An Education, sings on the album's title track (which you can download for free via a widget at the bottom of this post), and Norah Jones features on "Little Lou, Ugly Jack, Prophet John."
The band have taken some interesting routes promoting the new album. Earlier this year they encouraged fans to take pictures with the album's title incorporated into the shot, creating a Flickr pool for the project. Murdoch included his favorites in an entertaining half-hour "television" program (not sure if it aired anywhere but online) that is a mix of live performance, audience Q&A, and a discussion of the current state of the music industry. In a cute, charming way, of course. You can watch it below.
It is also worth noting that Belle and Sebastian have some really impressive openers along the way, including The Vaselines (Mexico dates), Versus in Washington D.C., Dean & Britta doing the Galaxie 500 thing in Boston, and Trashcan Sinatras in Seattle. All dates are at the bottom of this post.
Teenage Fanclub, who open the Waterfront show, have two headlining shows of their own -- tonight (9/27) and tomorrow (9/28) -- at Bowery Ballroom. Tickets are still available for both (click the links). Tomorrow's show is the more desirable of the two, with New Zealand indie rock legends The Clean as co-headliners. Merge labelmates The Radar Brother open both shows other dates on the tour.
If you somehow got this far into this post without reading it, we're giving away tickets to the show tomorrow with the Clean. See details below.
Teenage Fanclub's new album on Merge, Shadows, is the band's seventh. Like what I said about Belle and Sebastian above, you know what you're getting with a new TFC album at this point (midtempo, harmony-laden guitar pop indebted to Big Star and The Byrds) but the band has remained amazingly consistent during their 20-year history. It doesn't hurt that they have three very good songwriters in the band. (Though we can all agree Gerry Love is the best, right? No? Your mileage may vary.) You can stream the whole thing over at Merge's website. And they have always been good live, funny too.
Teenage Fanclub's North American tour with The Radar Brothers takes them across the continent, ending in Vancouver on October 16. All dates are at the bottom of this post.
One of the TFC dates is opening for The Vaselines in DC on Saturday (10/2). That's where the Vaselines are launching their own North American tour. Will there be any musicians over the age of 37 actually in Glasgow next week? The Vaselines tour hits NYC next week when they play Webster Hall on Wednesday, October 6 with openers Jeffrey Lewis and Crystal Stilts. If you haven't heard The Vaselines' new album Sex with an Ex, it picks right up where the band left off 20 years ago: smart, funny, filthy, and catchy as hell. And still genuinely great live.
All tour dates for Belle & Sebastian, Teenage Fanclub and The Vaselines are below, along with videos, contest details, widgets and whatnot.
Isobel Campbell & Mark Lanegan will be in the US this October, to play shows behind their new album, Hawk, due August 16th on V2/Cooperative Music. As previously mentioned, the album's guests include ex-Smashing Pumpkin James Iha and songwriter Willy Mason.
The full tour dates haven't been released yet, but the pair will be playing Bowery Ballroom on Saturday, October 16th and Music Hall of Williamsburg on Sunday, October 17th. Tickets go on AmEx presale Wednesday at noon and then general sale Friday, July 30th at noon.
Two days later, Mark's friend Greg Dulli plays Bowery Ballroom as part of his own solo tour that was just announced.
Mark and Isobel tour in the UK and Europe this September. That's the same month Isobel's old bandmates Belle & Sebastian play in NYC. The two groups are apparently on good terms, as Isobell & Mark are scheduled for the B&S-curated Bowlie 2 ATP Fest in the UK this December.
Tour dates and more are below...
by Bill Pearis
Euguene Kelley and Frances McKee are set to release the first Vaselines album in 20 years and they'll be touring to support it too. They'll be at Webster Hall in NYC on October 6 and tickets go on sale at noon. The new LP, Sex With An X, is out September 14 on Sub Pop. Here's the company line:
Recorded outside Manchester at the Analogue Catalogue studio in Mossley with Julie McLarnon engineering and produced by Jamie Watson who produced that first album Dum Dum, Sex With An X was recorded the old-fashioned way: twelve songs in thirteen days (plus two b-sides). The Vaselines ca. 2010 is Eugene and Frances with guest musicians Stevie Jackson and Bob Kildea from Belle & Sebastian on guitar and bass, and Michael McGaughrin from the 1990s on drums. It may have taken The Vaselines 20 years to get round to making this baby, but it was worth the wait--bringing their solo careers to a climax. The irony has not been lost. Who says indie music can't be fun? No hand-wringing on these tracks--just good clean smut with a twist of bitter.Having heard the whole thing, I can say that it not only doesn't suck but is right up their with their original output -- smart, funny, filthy, and catchy as hell. Surprise of the year. Download "I Hate the '80s" at the top of this post.
And with Jackson, Kildea and McGaughrin in their band, they are probably better live performers than they were back then. Their Music Hall of Williamsburg show last May, one night after they played Bowery Ballroom, was one of my favorites of 2009. It's worth going to see them for the in-between song banter alone -- McKee swears like a sailor.
No support has been announced yet for the Webster Hall show, but Dum Dum Girls, who have upcoming NYC shows of their own, will open elsewhere on their tour. Conversely, The Vaselines will open for Belle & Sebastian and Teenage Fanclub at select (non-NYC) dates as well. All Vaselines tour dates and the new album cover are below...
Minus the Bear @ Sasquatch 2010 (more by Chris Graham)
Kiss play Jones Beach and PNC Bank Arts Center in August. Tickets are currently on a bunch of presales.
We are Scientists are playing Bowery Ballroom on July 14th and Music Hall of Williamsburg on June 17th after Siren. Tickets are on sale for both shows.
Dragonette play Bowery Ballroom on August 13th. Tickets are on sale.
Queensryche are playing Nokia Theatre on August 20th. Tickets are on AmEx presale.
No ticket info yet for Spiritualized at Radio City Music Hall.
"We're still in sunny L.A., in the final stages of recording the album, but plans are already afoot for touring throughout the rest of 2010" wrote Belle & Sebastian at the end of May. Those 2010 touring plans include shows in Europe, Asia and North America (with a TBA trip to South America). As part of that (and as previously reported), the band will be playing Brooklyn's Williamsburg Waterfront on September 30th with Teenage Fanclub (who have a new album of their own coming out). Tickets for the NYC show go on "Internet Presale" Thursday at 10am.
They'll continue on for a show in L.A., a pair in Mexico and a handful more in Canada and the US this fall. Full tour dates are below (Las Vegas still TBA?).
Also due in 2010, ex-Belle & Sebastian singer Isobel Campbell will be releasing her third album with collaborator Mark Lanegan, called Hawk and due August 16th on V2/Cooperative Music. Guests include ex-Smashing Pumpkin James Iha and songwriter Willy Mason.
All B&S tour dates, and Hawk cover art, below...
DOWNLOAD: Teenage Fanclub - Baby Lee (MP3)
"Dogged adherents of the "if it ain't broke" philosophy of music, the Glaswegian quartet have been plying their own brand of harmony-laden guitar pop for two decades and little changes here. Pedestrian? Yes. Derivative? Certainly. But an alchemy exists within the band allowing them to find something newly life-affirming in the most well-worn elements of their Byrds-indebted sound. Current single "Baby Lee" might be twee but boasts a melody so sunny it could persuade grown men to skip down the street. And among this record's bittersweet pleasures, drowsy closer "Today Never Ends" is porch music of a timeless kind." [Guardian]Teenage Fanclub's new album, Shadows, was just released overseas in Europe (where they're touring at the moment in support of it). Merge Records puts the album out in the U.S., on June 8th (the last day of their UK tour). Download "Baby Lee" for free above.
In July and August, Teenage Fanclub will play some European festivals. In December they play the Belle & Sebastian-curated "Bowlie 2" ATP in Minehead. Before that they join their fellow Scots for a show in Brooklyn (and maybe a TBA tour?).
Anonymous pointed out that Matador is hosting their 21st anniversary festival in Las Vegas from October 1-3. That makes it seem very likely that Belle & Sebastian will play that too while they're visiting. Las Vegas Weekly reports...
...the host venue appears to be the Pearl at the Palms, according to a source with inside knowledge. And, yes, Pavement is set to headline, a figure close to the band has confirmed; the just-reunited '90s alt-luminaries play LA's Hollywood Bowl on Thursday, September 30, and will perform in Vegas that weekend... Oh, also on that Hollywood Bowl bill? The legendary Sonic Youth, whose latest album, 2009's The Eternal, was released by, ahem, Matador Records. Hmm...Teenage Fanclub's album tracklist and dates below...
DOWNLOAD: God Help the Girl - Come Monday Night (MP3)
With more shows being added all the time, we thought it timely to offer an update on this year's touring calendar. It's beginning to look like a pretty busy year and we still have more shows up our sleeve...The band is currently working on new material, and as it states above, will be touring the world in 2010. So far dates have been announced in Europe and Asia. NYC is definitely on the way.
For various reasons we cannot announce all the shows at the one time, but (all going to plan) in addition to these listed below we will be squeezing in shows in Canada, Mexico and the USA as well as a trip to South America between now and the end of the year. Of course we will also have some more European festivals and a few UK shows to announce later in the year too...-Belle and Sebastian
Meanwhile singles by/from God Help The Girl, a musical film written by B&S member Stuart Murdoch, are being released . You can stream and buy the newest single, "Baby You're Blind," (it was released on May 24th via Rough Trade) below. Current B&S dates and other stuff is down there too...
DOWNLOAD: God Help the Girl - Come Monday Night (MP3)
Regina Spektor's new album Far pushes the singer-songwriter even closer to pop superstardom without sacrificing any of the melodic or lyrical wit that is so endearing.
The Pavement Brighten The Corners: Nicene Creedence Ed. 4-LP box set is tempting (if a little pricey). The CD version was incredibly well put together, so I'm anxious to see what's in the vinyl edition.
What new music can you recommend this week? What's on your shopping list?
Isobel Campbell and Mark Lanegan are playing Webster Hall in NYC on Wednesday, May 27th. Tickets go on sale Thursday, April 2nd at noon.
Their last album together, Sunday at Devil Dirt, was released in May 2008. Mark last played Webster Hall in March of 2008 with the Gutter Twins. Also last year, Belle & Sebastian's BBC Sessions double-album was released - a collection that features Campbell singing, and pictured on the disc's cover.
Isobel Campbell & Mark Lanegan interview and live video below...
DOWNLOAD: Belle & Sebastian - a short interview with Stevie and Chris (MP3)
To mark the release of the BBC Sessions album on Monday 17th November (in the UK) and Tuesday 18th (USA) we have a short interview with Stevie and Chris, with their recollections of the various trips to Manchester and London.Download the MP3 above. Check out the BBC Sessions tracklist below...
photos by Bao Nguyen
"Carl Newman is currently mixing his as-yet-untitled long-player - set for a January release - and is especially enthusiastic about the lineup of musicians who contribute to the new tunes. "My friend John Wurster, who drums with Superchunk and the Mountain Goats, did most of the drumming," he says. "A singer named Nicole Atkins did a lot of singing on it. She's a really killer singer; she kind of reminds me of a cross between Mama Cass and the Shangri-La's."The New Pornographers played the All Points West Festival last weekend. Neither Neko or Dan were in attendance (though I'm almost positive I saw Neko in the crowd at Bob Dylan's Brooklyn show a few days later.). AC Newman collaborator Nicole Atkins also played All Points West. More pics from the New Pornos set, all tour dates, and the whole Stanley Park Singing Exhibition lineup, below...
Currently in the home stretch of completing the CD, Newman admits that he is his own best friend and worst enemy when it comes to working on the project. "Every time I make a record, I sit there thinking, 'It sounds too different,' and then the next day I think, 'it sounds the same as everything else,'" he says. "The next day, I'll go, 'It's perfect,' and the day after that I'll think, 'Its all wrong.' I just put my head down, try to work hard, hope for the best and hope that people buy it so I can continue doing this for a living." As soon as the solo effort is complete, Newman plans to "immediately" begin work on the next Pornographers record.
As far as their live performances are concerned, the New Pornographers plan to host a two-day, 10-band indie rock extravaganza on Labor Day weekend in Vancouver, calling it 'The Stanley Park Singing Exhibition.' The lineup for both nights was hand-picked by the Pornographers themselves; while their lead singer refuses to play favorites, Newman admits to being especially anticipatory about a semi-solo performance of a band he especially loves. "I saw Stevie [Jackson, of Belle and Sebastian fame] do a solo show in Brooklyn, and it was really good. Bob Kildea -- who is also in the band -- will be playing with him as well, which is pretty cool. Bob is the prettiest man in rock." [AOL Spinner]
photos by Ryan Muir
The Stranger: Why the decision to replace the original rhythm section [James Seenan on bass and Kelly's brother Charles on drums] with members of Belle and Sebastian?
Eugene Kelly: We thought it was going to be a one-off gig in Seattle, but it's sort of expanded. So we asked the guys in Belle and Sebastian because we figured it'd be quick and easy. They're really good at picking up songs and not having to rehearse very often. It's worked out really well. Before, the Vaselines never really played what was on the record. We played a different version. Before, it was much more spontaneous and sometimes you didn't know what was going to happen. We thought we'd get people who could reproduce what's on the record. People are going to come and expect to hear that and we want to deliver it for them.
The Vaselines played their second US show (with members of Belle and Sebastian) at Southpaw in Brooklyn last night (July 10, 2008). Was it much different than the show at Maxwell's the night before? More pictures below...
The Vaselines @ Maxwell's, Hoboken, NJ - July 9, 2008 (Music Snobbery)
The Vaselines played Maxwell's last night.
With their setlist, you pretty much got what you came for, unless you wanted Teenage Superstar. Their set was about 45 minuteslong, focusing on their top songs. Their voices haven't aged at all, even though I'd like to meet the person who saw them back in the day and remembers how they played. I can't emphaisze more how unique and special the night was, and then having it be a tribute to the indie rock of 20 years ago. It seems like it could be made today and not feel dated. [Music Snobbery]Tonight is Southpaw (July 10, 2008). Stevie, Bobby and Richard of Belle & Sebastian are playing as their backing band. Bill also pointed out that UK band The Indelicates are the opener. The Vaselines' only other US show is the Sub Pop Festival in Seattle this weekend. Video of Nirvana unplugged, and the Maxwell's setlist, below....
Stevie Jackson @ Union Hall, Brooklyn, NY - Jan 10, 2008 (CRED)
Andy wrote in to say, "Stevie played before the 1900s. Laura Cantrell came out to do a couple songs w/ him during his set including a cover of Hank Williams “Lost Highway”. The 1900s joined him for his last song and then later he joined them for their last song but they didn’t play together other than that."Tonight it's at Mercury Lounge.
Stevie Jackson of Belle & Sebastian is in town to play two shows with the 1900s. Tonight (Jan 10) they're at Union Hall (with Laura Gibson), and tomorrow they're both at Mercury Lounge (with Richard Buckner).
Then on January 12th, Stevie takes part in the free Guitar Festival show at Royal Albert Hall.
All new interpretations of Dylan classics performed by Laura Cantrell, Kelly Joe Phelps, Stevie Jackson (Belle & Sebastian), Marshall Crenshaw, Oakley Hall, Lenny Kaye & Katrina Kiedis (Sufjan Stevens Band), Jason Isbell (Drive By Truckers), Jim Lauderdale, Toshi Reagon, Freeman & Vernon Reid, Harry Manx & Kevin Breit, The Last Town Chorus/Megan Hickey, Jesse Harris, Richard Julian & Jim Campilongo, Chocolate Genius Inc. and others.
DOWNLOAD: Belle and Sebastian - Are You Coming Over For Christmas? (MP3)
The lovely new song that is streaming on the home page is called 'Are You Coming Over For Christmas?' and was recorded this week in Glasgow, being completed with three days to spare!
It is a brand new recording and the band's first studio output since last year's 'The Life Pursuit' album.
As well as the band members, it features guest vocals by Celia Garcia, double bass by Dave McGowan, saxophones and clarinet by James Swinburne and harp by Helen Macleod. It was arranged by Mick Cooke, engineered by Steven Clark and mixed by Stuart McCredie.
The track can be streamed from the homepage or the band's MySpace profile. As a special Xmas present, we will switch on the download function on the MySpace from midnight 'til midnight on Christmas Day. Happy Christmas! [Belle and Sebastian]
"Maybe I'll read off the sponsors again" the MC joked to the audience yesterday as the rain died off and Belle & Sebastian were about to take the stage. He didn't, but he did quiz us on the founding sponsor of the River to River Festival. Hint: it has the word "American" in it and it's not American Apparel.
I'm not sure exactly what happened, but here are a few reactions...
IN MY EMAIL "River to River screwed a whole lot of Belle & Sebastian fans today. You know how they told everybody they were giving out tickets at the Starbucks starting at noon today? Well, at least at the Barclay & Broadway location, people found out at 11:50am that all the tickets had already been given away. They cited an unspecified 'safety concern' as the reason."
IN THE COMMENTS: "went to the one at woolworth bldg (b'way & barclay st) this morning... got there at 9am and was about 100 ppl back in line. no one knew how many tix they were giving out. at 10:35 or so the line started moving & they were giving out the tix bc the line was like about 500 ppl long (at least) and they had 500 pairs of tix. feel bad for the people who came at noon."
IN THE COMMENTS: "All tickets at the Woolworth Building Starbucks were given away starting a few hours before noon. Lame lame lame."
Tickets are required and space is limited. Two tickets per person will be distributed free, first come – first served on Tuesday, June 27th at the following Starbucks Coffee locations:
"7 World Trade Center, a gleaming 52-floor tower adjacent to where the Twin Towers stood until Sept. 11, 2001, officially opens on May 23. So far, Silverstein only has commitments for less than 25 percent of the new space." [Reuters]
The opening ceremony is at 11:30. At noon there's a free concert and the lineup is pretty impressive: Brazilian Girls, Citizen Cope, Ollabelle, Pharaoh's Daughter, Lou Reed, Ronan Tynan, Suzanne Vega, and Bill Ware Vibes. Flyer below.....
NYC's River to River Festival just announced the official initial lineup of FREE NYC summer concerts. This includes the shows at South Street Seaport, Battery Park, and the World Financial Center. Previously announced highlights include Hot Chip, Richard Hawley, Okkervil River, The Hold Steady, Eels, Smoosh, Alex Chilton, Super Furry Animals, and Son Volt. All of those are now confirmed. New surprises include 4th of July with Belle & Sebastian, Mates of State at Castle Clinton, and a confirmation that Ted Leo is playing the Seaport for the 5th year in a row.
Keep reading for everything....