Entries tagged with: Bon Iver

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Kanye West

"...On Monday West, who is 33, will release his fifth album, "My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy" (Roc-A-Fella/Def Jam), and it's terrific -- of course it's terrific -- a startlingly maximalist take on East Coast rap traditionalism. And yet that doesn't matter nearly as much as it should, at least partly because of West's insistence on his own greatness. By not allowing for responses to his work other than awe, the value of the work itself is diminished; it becomes an object of admiration, not of study. Instead the focus is on the whole of West's persona and character, which is more fractured and subject to a far wider range of responses. The result is that West becomes a polarizing public figure who happens to be the most artful pop musician of the day, not the other way around.

Nevertheless, West seems virtually incapable of making a bad record. He's committed to pop, and he's savvy and talented enough to make it great, every time. What's more, for him to make something other than a universally accepted smash would be a thing that his ego couldn't bear. Every Kanye West album, until the cancer of the world around him begins to encroach on the parts of his cerebral cortex that control his musical ear, will be excellent and huge. He'll never have an idiosyncratic period.

Even at his most extreme, West isn't an experimenter. His music is ornate, ostentatious, curious and vivacious. But risky? No. All of his fiddling is within recognized formulas. A producer as well as a rapper, West controls all of the major elements of his songs, unlike other artists who have to rely on their taste (or their record label's taste) in outside producers or songwriters.

To work on this album he retreated to Hawaii, as he did during the making of his previous album. And West's gravitational pull is such that he can import talent. Rick Ross, Kid Cudi, Pusha T, Nicki Minaj -- they all made the trip to make music that will appear on the album. The spooky indie folky Justin Vernon from Bon Iver spoke of smoking marijuana with Rick Ross on one of his three sojourns to Hawaii to work with West, about as surreal a tableau as has been created in the making of any pop album this year." [JON CARAMANICA, Sunday New York Times]

"Runaway" video below...

Continue reading "Kanye West 'seems virtually incapable of making a bad album'"

photos by Ryan Muir

Gayngs

Much like they did the night before at Bowery Ballroom, Gayngs played a NYC show with Glasser last night (10/4) at Music Hall of Williamsburg, and covered Sade (and George Michael). The multi-member group, which started with 23 members but became 10 for this tour, includes band leader Ryan Olson, Justin Vernon (Bon Iver), Ivan from the Rosebuds, and members of Megafaun (and opener Glasser). Pictures from the Brooklyn show are in this post, as is the video of their appearance on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon which happened last night too. They played "The Gaudy Side of Town" for what was probably the first and last time they ever appear on TV...

Express Night Out: How does the 10-piece compare to the full ensemble?
Ryan Olson: It's way tighter musically. We had two days to practice with 23 people and make that shit gel. It's starting to feel like a band right now which is really fun. It's ridiculously fantastic, over-the-top fun.

Express Night Out: You've been emphasizing that this isn't a real band.
Ryan Olson: It's kind of more like a surreal band. It won't ever happen again.

Gayngs also recently laid down some tracks for Daytrotter, including "The Gaudy Side of Town", the Sade cover, and others. Grab those.

And speaking of Sade, she has a tour of her own coming up. George Michael is enjoying prison life.

Meanwhile Glasser has a just-announced headlining show of her own on the way. The chanteuse will make an appearance at Music Hall of Williamsburg on 11/16. Tickets go on AMEX presale at noon on Wednesday (10/6) with regular sale kicking off at noon two days later.

More Glasser dates, the Jimmy Fallon video, and more pictures from MHOW are below...

Continue reading "Gayngs played MHOW, Daytrotter & Fallon (pics & video), Glasser adds a NYC show (and other dates) "

DOWNLOAD: Megafaun - "Volunteers" (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Megafaun - "Carolina Days" (MP3)

Megafaun @ Bowery Ballroom in 2009 (more by Kurt Christensen)
Megafaun

Those looking for an excuse for a road trip this weekend:

Megafaun & Fight the Big Bull • 'Sounds of the South'
feat. Justin Vernon of Bon Iver & Sharon Van Etten

Friday, September 17, 2010 | 8:00 pm
Saturday, September 18, 2010 | 8:00 pm
Sunday, September 19, 2010 | 5:00 pm
Hayti Heritage Center
$26 • Duke & NCCU Students $5

The members of Megafaun moved from Wisconsin to Raleigh with Vernon as the band DeYarmond Edison. After Vernon went back north to record as Bon Iver, the Cook brothers and Joe Westerlund stayed on in the Piedmont, crafting a timeless folk-pop that "drinks deeply from the well of the past but could only have been made today" (Drowned in Sound)--an archive of rural America's ghosts.

In this exclusive live recording event, the rustic avant-gardists team with Fight the Big Bull, the "thrilling" (NPR) 9-piece jazz collective from Richmond, VA, along with Vernon and the blisteringly talented Van Etten. Together in Durham for three shows only, they'll cut a live album based on Alan Lomax's collection of shape-note songs and dirt-floor hymns, Sounds of the South, gathered during a two-year trek through the American southeast (1959-1961).

Tickets for the three shows appear to still be available. I would go if I could, but knowing a live album will come of it is nice too.

Sharon Van Etten plays two NYC shows and then tours in October.

Meanwhile, Megafaun's fine new mini-LP Heretofore is out today (9/14). Check out two free songs from that above. Grab a remix the band did for The Acron @ My Old Kentucky Blog. And a video of Megafaun covering Gillian Welch with The Tallest Man on Earth, below...

Continue reading "Megafaun LP out now (MP3s), 'Sounds of the South' shows w/ Justin Vernon & Sharon Van Etten this weekend "

DOWNLOAD: Gayngs - Faded High (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Glasser - Home (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Gayngs - The Gaudy Side of Town (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Gayngs - The Gaudy Side Of Town (live) (MP3)

Gayngs member Justin Vernon (more by Drew Kaiser)
Gayngs

Gayngs have slightly updated their tour dates since we last spoke. Glasser will open all of them, and they've confirmed the following live lineup:

Ten of the twenty-plus contributors on the Relayted album will be there, including Justin Vernon and Mike Noyce of Bon Iver, ringleader Ryan Olson, Zak Coulter and Adam Hurlburt of Solid Gold. Jake Luck of Leisure Birds, Ivan Rosebud of The Rosebuds, Brad Cook and Joe Westerlund of Megafaun, and Mike Lewis of Andrew Bird and Happy Apple will all be there too!
Gayngs played their first show, "The Last Prom on Earth", in Minneapolis in May. Grab the Chromeoesque live version of "The Gaudy Side Of Town", that was recorded at that show, above. Two studio versions of songs from their debut album Relayted, which was released by Jagjaguwar in May, are up there too. "The Gaudy Side Of Town" video is below with all dates (including two happening in NYC which are still on sale).

Glasser's debut album "Ring" will be released by Matador/True Panther on September 28th. Check out "Home" from that album above.

And speaking of Bon Iver,

"The rumors are true. And then some. Bon Iver mastermind Justin Vernon laid vocals down on "at least 10 songs" during three separate week-long trips to record with Kanye West in Hawaii earlier this year. While it's unclear how many of those tunes will actually make Kanye's forthcoming record-- due November 16-- at least one, "Lost in the World", seems to be a lock. In fact, the track-- which features newly recorded vocals by Vernon as well as a prominent sample of his Auto-Tuned song "Woods"-- could very well be the as-yet-untitled album's next single, according to a Kanye Ustream broadcast that aired last week.

All this news comes courtesy of Vernon himself, who excitedly chatted with us about the collaboration yesterday. Talking about "Lost in the World", Vernon said, "We were just eating breakfast and listening to it and Kanye's like, 'Fuck, this is going to be the festival closer.' I was like, 'Yeah, cool.' It kind of freaked me out." Along with West, Vernon met and worked with Nicki Minaj, John Legend, and Rick Ross while in Hawaii. He said, "I was literally in the back room rolling a spliff with Rick Ross talking about what to do on the next part of a song. It was astonishing."" [Pitchfork]

Kanye played a private show with John Legend in NYC last week

BV reporter Frederico Rasperrini, like he did for WAVVES, spoke to Gayngs ringleader Ryan Olson backstage at Lollapalooza. Gayngs didn't play the festival, but Ryan was hanging out (he DJ'd an afterparty). Check out that video with the other video and all dates, and a NSFW Gayngs picture, below...

Continue reading "live Gayngs & new Glasser MP3, Kanye West+Bon Iver=BFF, updated dates & an interview w/ Frederico Rasperrini"

DOWNLOAD: S Carey - In the Dirt (MP3)

S Carey

Fans of Bon Iver won't be disappointed with the new album by Bon Iver member S. Carey. I've been listening to the album, entitled "All We Grow" (out 8/24 on Jagjaguwar), all morning so thought I'd share the fact that "In the Dirt" is now a free download. Grab it above. Catch S. Carey on tour with The Tallest Man on Earth in September. Tickets are still on sale for the show at Webster Hall.

Cover art and full album tracklist below...

Continue reading "S. Carey - "In the Dirt" from "All We Grow" (MP3) "

by Andrew Frisicano

Tallest Man On Earth @ Highline Ballroom in April (more by Dominick Mastrangelo)
Tallest Man On Earth

Sweden's Tallest Man On Earth will be going to Europe after his set at Pitchfork Fest on July 16th. He's back in North America for shows in September, where he'll tour with S. Carey, the project of Sean Carey, who plays with Bon Iver. S. Carey's debut, All We Grow, written while on the road with Bon Iver for the past two years, comes out August 24th on Jagjaguwar. Dreamy, orchestrated tune "In the Dirt" is up on his MySpace.

The Tallest Man On Earth and S. Carey play Webster Hall Monday, September 27th. Tickets went on AmEx presale at noon. General sale starts Friday at noon.

All tour dates are below...

Continue reading "The Tallest Man on Earth touring w/ Bon Iver member S. Carey (who is releasing an album) - 2010 tour dates "

DOWNLOAD: Sharon Van Etten - Love More (MP3)

photo by Kristianna Smith

Sharon Van Etten will be putting out her second record, a seven-song collection called Epic, on October 5th through Ba Da Bing. The track above is the last song off that. If you've seen her live recently (like at the Chris Knox Benefit), you may have caught it. In April, the song was covered at the Music Now Fest in Cincinnati by Bon Iver and members of the National. Their version (captured quite blurily) is posted below, as is a stripped-down acoustic rendition by Sharon.

The new record was recorded at Philly's Miner Street Studios and features vocal assists by Meg Baird (Espers), Cat Martino and Jessica Larrabee (She Keeps Bees). A seven-inch is also due this summer on Polyvinyl.

Live, Sharon will be at Zebulon on July 7th to perform with a screening of The Builder. After that she has a pair of shows in Chicago including the Pitchfork Fest, and then a Saturday, August 7th show at Bushwick Starr with Mike Visser. She's also on the schedule for the Panda Bear- & Public Enemy-hosting Hopscotch Festival in North Carolina this September.

Tracklist for the new album, live videos and dates are below...

Continue reading "Sharon Van Etten releasing 'Epic' - new MP3 & tour dates"

by Andrew Frisicano

DOWNLOAD: Califone - "Ro" (feat. Orso) (MP3 premiere)
DOWNLOAD: Sharon Van Etten - "I Couldn't Save You" (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Sam Amidon - "Cabin in the Corner" (MP3)

The Builder

The members of expansive Chicago group Califone have a soft spot for film. In 2009 they made one of their own, All My Friends Are Funeral Singers, which they toured around the country (and which just came out on DVD on May 27th). So it's no surprise that they've lent one of their tunes, an unreleased number called "Ro," to filmmaker R. Alverson for a package of songs "for or inspired by" his debut feature film, The Builder. The song will be part of a digital-only series to accompany the film's July 27th DVD release on Jagjaguwar (it's the label's first movie release). That Califone song, which features fellow Chicagoan Orso, is posted above, as are two other songs from the series by fellow BV favorites Sam Amidon and Sharon Van Etten.

Music for the film itself is provided by Bon Iver, Gregor Samsa, Pan American, Robert Donne and Spokane (a group that features Alverson and the film's co-producer Courtney Bowles).

The Builder will be make its New York debut at a free screening hosted at cozy Brooklyn bar Zebulon on Wednesday, July 7th. Sharon Van Etten will be playing a set at that.

Filming on Alverson's second feature New Jerusalem, which stars Will Oldham and Builder actor/co-writer Colm O'Leary, finished earlier this year.

The trailer & synopsis for The Builder, along with a video interview with Alverson, and Califone's handful of tour dates (all in the Midwest, besides an August show at Mass MoCa in North Adams, MA) are below...

Continue reading "Califone (& Sharon Van Etten & Sam Amidon) on album inspired by 'The Builder' - MP3s & NYC debut screening info"

photos by Kyle Dean Reinford

Vernon & Shade

John Shade

John Shade, who made his live debut at the BV/BP Haiti benefit at Music Hall of Williamsburg that Justin Vernon (Bon Iver) also played, recorded his debut album at Bon Iver's studio in Wisconsin late last year. Early this year, Shade recorded another version of the record (with string quartet) - it was produced by Paul Kolderie (Pixies, Radiohead, Hole, Dinosaur Jr, Warron Zevon, etc). Paul offered to make the record after coming to a John Shade gig in Boston. We posted an MP3 from that session in our announcement of John Shade's next (and 2nd) NYC show which happens (with string quartet) at Mercury Lounge tonight (Monday, 4/12). John also plays Lizard Lounge in Cambridge on Wednesday (4/14).

Justin Vernon and John Shade sat down (in front of their respective computers) and had an IM chat about various topics including John's new record, movies, books, and sometimes I'm not sure what. That conversation, and more (never-before-seen) pictures from the Haiti benefit, below...

Continue reading "John Shade in conversation with Justin Vernon"

DOWNLOAD: Anais Mitchell - Flowers (Eurydice's Song) (mp3)
DOWNLOAD: Anais Mitchell - Wait For Me w/ Justin Vernon (mp3)
DOWNLOAD: Anais Mitchell - Cosmic American (MP3)

Anais Mitchell

Speaking of The Low Anthem, The Low Anthem's Ben Knox Miller recently joined Justin Vernon (Bon Iver), Greg Brown, Ani DiFranco, and Petra, Rachel, and Tanya Haden to play on the new record by Anais Mitchell, Hadestown, which is due out March 9th on Righteous Babe. The record is a concept album about the Greek myth of Orpheus & Euridice, and each of those singers plays a role...

Hadestown began its existence in 2006 as a live "folk opera" that the Vermont-based singer/songwriter created in collaboration with director Ben t. Matchstick (Bread & Puppet Theater) and arranger/orchestrator Michael Chorney. After loading the sets and the 22-member cast of Vermont performers into a former circus bus and touring New England during "full-on winter," it was time to rework a few songs. Next, Mitchell called upon a few fellow musicians to lend their voices to a recorded version--not a cast album, but a stand-alone, self-contained song cycle. The result is a veritable Who's Who of modern indie folk/rock: Justin Vernon of Bon Iver plays Orpheus; Greg Brown is Hades, Lord of the Underworld ("king of the kingdom of dirt"); and Ani DiFranco plays Hades' strong-willed, subversive wife, Persephone. Also on hand in smaller roles are the Haden Triplets (Petra, Rachel, and Tanya) as the Greek-chorus-like Fates and Ben Knox Miller of The Low Anthem as the messenger Hermes. Mitchell herself sings the part of Eurydice, the character whose (metaphoric) death propels Orpheus into "Hadestown."
The album's cover art is above along with two songs from the new album, one of which features Justin. Full tracklist below.

In other Justin Vernon collaboration news, he recently performed live with St. Vincent two times (one, two) in NYC, and one of his Bon Iver songs is covered on the new Peter Gabriel album.

Anais's upcoming shows include an April 23rd show at Joe's Pub billed as "Anais Mitchell & the Hadestown Orchestra". Tickets are on sale. All dates and a video of Anais performing with Justin, below...

Continue reading "Anais Mitchell playing shows, releasing 'Hadestown' - concept album w/ Justin Vernon, Greg Brown, Hadens, more (MP3s)"

DOWNLOAD: Peter Gabriel - Flume (Bon Iver cover) (MP3)

Peter Gabriel

Peter Gabriel's new record Scratch My Back is an all-cover, orchestra-backed collection of songs from Bowie's "Heroes" to Arcade Fire's "My Body Is a Cage." There's also a Bon Iver cover, a soft-spoken take on "Flume," which you can get above (full track list below). The record is described as "the first part of a series of song exchanges in which Peter and other leading artists reinterpret each others songs." It comes out in UK/Europe on February 15th (through EMI), in Canada on February 16th (through Universal Music) and in the US on March 2nd through Gabriel's own Real World Records.

Gabriel's album-supporting tour is short and sweet. He plays three European cities in March, then there are three North American stops - one night in L.A. and Montreal, and two nights at New York's Radio City Music Hall on May 2nd and 3rd. Tickets go on AmEx presale Sunday, Febraury 7th. General sale starts Tuesday, February 16th at 10am. For all the dates, he'll have a 54-piece orchestra in tow.

In other rock legends playing Radio City news, tickets go on general sale Friday for a show Ringo Starr and his All Star Band are playing at the venue in July.

Full Peter Gabriel tracklist w/ album art, an audio interview with Peter about the album, and tour dates, below...

Continue reading "indie rock-covering Peter Gabriel announces shows - 2 nights @ Radio City Music Hall & other dates, Bon Iver MP3, more"

photos by Chris La Putt

"St Vincent brought out David freaking Byrne!!" - Kari

St. Vincent
St. Vincent

For the second week in a row, Justin Vernon (Bon Iver) and Annie Clark (aka St. Vincent) performed together at a NYC show. Last week it was the Haiti benefit. Last night it was St Vincent's headlining show at Lincoln Center's Allen Room. Last week included a bunch of covers. Last night included the Twilight song. Shara Worden, saxophonist Colin Stetson and a member of Megafaun were surprise guests last week. David Byrne, Budos Band horns, and a member of The National (and Justin) were surprise guests last night.

St Vincent appears on David Byrne's new album, as does Nicole Atkins who shares a bill with David at Bowery Ballroom on February 3rd. Bon Iver and St Vincent are both playing MusicNOW fest in March. The National just announced a new album and a tour that includes Radio City Music Hall, and the Big Ears Festival that St. Vincent is also playing.

St. Vincent heads out on tour with Wildbirds & Peacedrums on February 3rd. More pictures and the setlist from the Allen Room, below...

Continue reading "St. Vincent (and David Byrne, Justin Vernon, Bryce Dessner & more) played Lincoln Center's Allen Room - pics & setlist"

photos by Paul Birman

"Thanks to everyone who came to the BV Haiti benefit last night. You made it really special." - St. Vincent

"St. Vincent and Justin Vernon performing together was easily one of the most beautiful things I have ever seen/heard." - Steph Lo

Brooklyn Vegan and Bowery Presents Haiti Benefit

Wyatt Cenac was funny. Then came Britt Daniel (of Spoon) with White Rabbits frontman Stephen Patterson. They had such a good time on stage together, you can tell they were buds. Janeane Garofalo came next - she has the smartest humor and is a strong rooted New Yorker. Made a ton of jokes about the L train and hipsters which the crowd took very warmly to. Gosh she's tiny. St Vincent went on and sounded like the lovely thing she is. Someone yelled while she was setting up 'show us your bush'????', In which she replied, 'that is the strangest thing someone has ever said to me...on or off stage'. Adorable. Following her was Zach Galifianakis who everyone was undeniably waiting for. It really looked like he just rolled out of bed, picked up some papers from a table and walked on stage totally winging his whole act...hilarious. Alas came Justin Vernon (aka Bon Iver). His voice sounded just as amazing it does on record. The room was at its most quiet during "Flume". Unreal. He was the last act but did say something about a special guest - I heard it was Megafaun/My Brightest Diamond (had to leave early), which I imagine rounded out the benefit nicely. Really awesome that these guys all came together"...
[Stadiums & Shrines]
Thanks for that partial recap S&S. You should have gotten there earlier and stayed later though!

The night opened with a great debut set by singer-songwriter John Shade (previously Dave Godowsky) who brought out Justin Vernon on drums for two songs. Before and after John, and between every set of the night, came comedy by our two able hosts: Bobby Tisdale and Leo Allen. St Vincent's set included a National and a Nico cover. Justin covered John Prine. Britt Daniel did three songs, which was one less than he played at Sound Fix a few hours earlier.

And yep, the special guest after/during Justin's set was in fact Shara Worden (My Brightest Diamond) who (after headlining Bowery Ballroom one night earlier) played two jaw dropping numbers - one with Colin Stetson on his most-insane giant saxophone, and a cover of Prince's "How Come U Don't Call Me Anymore".

But it didn't end there. A supergroup called Songer Singwriter featuring Annie, Justin, drummer, and Brad from Megafaun came back to close the night off right with a set of four more covers. Neil Young's "Harvest Moon", Tom Petty's "Face in the Crowd" (with Brad on lead), Dolly Parton's "Jolene", and Annie Lennox's "Why". Each of those final covers was better than the next. To quote one of my tweets, "To quote my friend, 'Sounds like sonic youth playing a dolly parton song. Sick!' and now Annie Lennox Why! Full room Bon Iver singalong".

We ran almost non-stop for 3.5 hours straight (8-11:30), and raised over $20,000. I'm still waiting for an exact number. More pictures (one of two sets we have) and some videos from the show, below....

Continue reading "Britt Daniel, Justin Vernon, St Vincent, Zach Galifianakis, Janeane Garofalo & others raised money for Haiti @ MHOW - pics & video "

I am very happy to announce....

Red Cross
Red Cross

A Night of Comedy and Music to Benefit Haiti
Presented By Bowery Presents and BrooklynVegan
With short sets by:
Zach Galifianakis, Britt Daniel (of Spoon), Justin Vernon (Bon Iver), St. Vincent, Janeane Garofalo, Wyatt Cenac (of the Daily Show), the live debut of John Shade (ex Dave Godowsky) & possibly more TBA (stay tuned)

Venue: Music Hall of Williamsburg
Date: Sat 1/23 (AKA IN LESS THAN TWO DAYS)
Notes: 18+, Doors 6:30 PM / Show 8:00 PM

Tickets (on sale Friday at noon) are only going to be $35 in advance, and $40 at the door if there are any left. A more expensive VIP option will be available so we can raise as much money as possible. 100% of the proceeds will be split between an orphanage in Haiti (that Zach chose) and the Red Cross.

Note: this show is not to be confused North 6th for Haiti (1/27 @ MHOW) which will also be announced any second (and is already on Ticketmaster)

---

We were lucky to get Justin Vernon who was in town just long enough after tonight's appearance (1/21) for the NY Guitar Festival.

Spoon was also in town tonight for a show, and Britt Daniel will be playing a show at Sound Fix that same day at 7pm (1/23).

Zach Galifianakis speaks to Natalie Portman in the video below...

Continue reading "Haiti benefit SATURDAY NIGHT (Zach Galifianakis, Britt Daniel, Justin Vernon, St Vincent, Janeane Garofalo & more) "

MusicNow

The Big Ears Festival, happening March 26-28 in Knoxville, TN, recently expanded its lineup to include the National, Dirty Projectors, Bang On A Can All-Stars, Iva Bittova, Ben Frost, Tim Hecker, Tracy Silverman, and Buke & Gass. Those are in addition to the previously announced acts of Vampire Weekend, the Calder Quartet, 802 Tour (Nico Muhly/Doveman/Sam Amidon with Nadia Sirota), Joanna Newsom, St. Vincent, Andrew WK, The Ex, Gang Gang Dance, Clogs, The xx, Javelin, DJ/rupture (solo), DJ/rupture and Andy Moor, My Brightest Diamond, Gyan Riley and jj.

Big Ears is being co-curated by Bryce Dessner of the National, who's also bringing some great acts to his hometown of Cincinnati for MusicNOW Festival. For that, the city's Memorial Hall will host three shows: Joanna Newsom on March 30th, St. Vincent and yMusic on 31st, and Justin Vernon April 1st. Annie Clark a.k.a. St. Vincent has been commissioned to write a piece for the fest that yMusic will perform. More guests TBA. Tickets and three-night passes are on sale.

Joanna Newsom is coming to NYC in March. Tickets are now on AmEx presale. Justin Vernon (aka Bon Iver) is here sooner (this Thursday). St. Vincent has a show coming up at Lincoln Center.

Wildbirds & Peacedrums @ The Bell House in September (more by Ryan Muir)
Wildbirds & Peacedrums

Wildbirds & Peacedrums are going on tour with St. Vincent this February. That goes from British Columbia to Philly in one month, but stops short of NYC. The reason for that is probably St. Vincent's appearance, right before the tour starts, at Lincoln Center's Allen Room (as part of their American Songbook series) scheduled for Friday, January 29th (tickets are on sale).

Sweden's Wildbirds & Peacedrums will play their own shows in the city as well, but after the tour is complete. Their first NYC show will happen on Friday, February 26th at Mercury Lounge. Tickets go on sale Wednesday, December 9th (today) at noon. They they play Bruar Falls in Brooklyn the next night (2/27).

All tour dates for both, and St. Vincent's song with Bon Iver that appears on the Twilight: New Moon soundtrack are below.

Since we're mentioning Bon Iver, it should also be noted that eight songs from his April concert with Eau Claire Memorial Jazz I, Justin Vernon's former high school jazz band, has been released...

Just in time for the holiday season, Eau Claire Memorial Jazz I is proud to announce the CD release of their A Decade With Duke concert featuring Justin Vernon of BON IVER.

CDs are available for purchase in Eau Claire, Wisconsin only at Brick House Music, Morgan Music, and the offices of Volume One.

A digital version which includes only the second set, featuring Vernon, is also available digitally worldwide at most online music retailers such as iTunes, Amazon, eMusic, etc.

All proceeds from the local CD sales and digital sales will be donated directly to Eau Claire Memorial High School's band and jazz band programs.

Bon Iver will be back in NYC in January. The classic-looking A Decade With Duke cover, and full tracklist, below...

Continue reading "Wildbirds & Peacedrums & St Vincent touring (but playing separately in NYC) ++ Bon Iver-related CD released"

Deer Tick

According to eMusic, the above picture is John McCauley of Deer Tick as a California Raisin for Halloween. They also collected pictures from Bon Iver, Black Mountain, Dawes, The Black Lips, and many others.

This year Deer Tick is going to be The Sex Pistols for Halloween, a fine choice of activities for that evening, though I may not be able to pass up partying like it's 1994 with Bad Brains & The Jesus Lizard instead. If I do, I'll definitely regret missing the Mt. Eerie show at Market Hotel. And hopefully I'll make it to at least some of the parade.

What are you doing on Halloween? What are you wearing?

Browse the Halloween tag on this site for more Halloween-related posts and shows.

Continue reading "What are you doing on Halloween?"

by Andrew Frisicano

DOWNLOAD: Aaron Dessner - We Were Born (from the Long Count) (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: The Long Count - Bull Run (feat. Kelley Deal) (MP3)

Twins! (the Dessners & the Deals)
The Long Count

The Long Count kicks off its three show engagement at BAM's Gilman Opera House tonight (10/28). Tickets are still available for the show, as well as for the Friday (10/30) and Saturday (10/31) performances.

The 70-minute music and multimedia piece, commissioned by BAM Next Wave Festival, is the work of Bryce and Aaron Dessner of the National and visual artist Matthew Ritchie. But they haven't been working alone. At every step of composing and arranging the Long Count over the past year, the brothers have tapped into their crew of skilled collaborators. The 12-piece orchestra that will be joining them on stage counts talents like NYC violist Nadia Sirota (who played last month's Archipelago series show), sax/bass clarinet player Colin Stetson, and Antony & the Johnsons' guitarist/violinist/conductor Rob Moose (who in particular assisted with some of the arranging duties).

As previously mentioned, the Breeders' Kim and Kelley Deal (twins) collaborated with the Dessners (also twins) on much of the music - they sing for nearly half of the show. Other vocal turns will be taken by the Nationals' Matt Berninger and My Brightest Diamond's Shara Worden.

All four singers play roles in the narrative of the Long Count, which takes its story from the Mayan creation myth of Popol Vuh. In that, multiple sets of twins (in the story and on stage) experience repeated cycles of life and death until giving birth to the world as we know it. The original tale ties in strongly with a ballgame played by its main characters - an element which the Dessners have woven in with their love of baseball, particularly Cincinnati Reds and the Big Red Machine.

Musically, the Long Count sections posted above, both from the show's work-in-progress performance at University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign on September 11th, showcase the piece's diversity. The first, "We Were Born," highlights the minimalist pedigree of the show, while "Bull Run" layers those elements with fearsome orchestral lines and extremely creepy vocals by Kelley Deal.

Paired with the spooky nature of Mathew Ritchie's animation (which you can preview here) the show looks to be a good Halloween night warm-up as any. In fact, the early Saturday night show has the most tickets available, and it follows a pre-show Q&A (ticketed separately) led by Brandon Stosuy (who's curating the Mount Eerie + metal show at Market Hotel later in the night).

Bryce generously answered some of our questions over the phone while in the last week of rehearsal (and in the hectic center of CMJ week). More photos from the production, and that interview, where he reveals the existence of an unreleased Christmas album he made with Sufjan, details on the new National record and more, below...

Continue reading "an interview w/ Bryce Dessner of The National whose show, The Long Count, opens @ BAM tonight ++ 2 MP3's"

P2K

The backstory has been repeated so often with such insistence that three years later it's become a mythic tall tale: Guy breaks up band in North Carolina, decamps to the wilds of Wisconsin, makes a record originally intended to be heard by almost nobody. But what happened next is much more interesting: After Justin Vernon made 500 copies and distributed them himself, the album is picked up by indie juggernaut Jagjaguwar, gets big props from Wisconsin Senator Russ Feingold, holds up to hundreds of repeat listens, and get thousands of festivalgoers singing along solemnly to "The Wolves". Quiet and folkily ambient, For Emma, Forever Ago is an impassioned cry too compelling not to become heard. From those opening strums to the "Flume" to the closing hums of "Re: Stacks", the album communicates acute loneliness and nurses a pain that has dulled but obviously not died-- which is perhaps our own romantic view of ourselves. It's easy to get caught up in the stories surrounding this out-of-nowhere album, but the music pulls you back to the real world. --Stephen M. Deusner
That's Pitchfork's description of the 29th best album of the decade (part of the top 200), Bon Iver's For Emma, Forever Ago. They will announce the top 20 on Friday. What will they be? In Rainbows got #21. Vampire Weekend was #51. Outkast put out the best song.

Thom Yorke has 2, possibly 3, shows coming up in LA.
Bon Iver recently played in a graveyard in LA.

The EraserThe Eraser

"Thom Yorke and Flea's new supergroup will play a Radiohead song at their upcoming debut gigs in Los Angeles., it's been revealed.

The as-yet-unnamed band's drummer Mauro Refosco told Brazilian website Abril.com they will play Thom Yorke's 'The Eraser' album in its entirety, four new songs and one Radiohead track at the shows on Sunday and Monday (October 4 & 5).

It's rumoured the band will air Thom Yorke's song he wrote for the Twilight New Moon soundtrack, 'Hearing Damage', as one of the "new" songs." [gigwise]

LA Weekly is also reporting that their might be a secret Thom Yorke show at the Echoplex this Friday night, October 2.

The new Twilight soundtrack, as you may have heard, also includes tracks by many familiar names including Death Cab For Cutie, Muse, Sea Wolf, Grizzly Bear & Beach House's Victoria Legrand, Bon Iver & St. Vincent, and Editors...

Speaking exclusively to Gigwise, Editors frontman Tom Smith said: "The films aren't aimed at people our age but I look at the bands that we're next to on that soundtrack and it's just a good thing.

"It's not selling out, it's not putting your song on an advert or selling a product.

"It's just being part of something that, to me, as collective seems like a pretty attractive thing."

New Moon is the second instalment of the vampire franchise, which stars British actor Robert Pattinson and Kristen Stewart.

Cover art and tracklist below...

Continue reading "Thom Yorke's LA setlist, a secret show?, Twilight soundtrack"

photos by Darren Kim

Bon Iver

"Those of you reading outside of Los Angeles might need a primer on the cemetery. It's situated in the middle of Hollywood, shares a southern border with the Paramount Studios lot, is this incredibly peaceful and quiet place a five minute drive from downtown Hollywood. Among the American royalty enshrined on the grounds are Charlie Chaplin, Mel Blanc, Cecil B. DeMille, John Huston, Art Pepper, Yma Sumac, Johnny Ramone and Eva Tanguay. Amidst the tombstones are gorgeous mausoleums, quiet ponds, elegant statues and a building with a vast white wall the exact size of a movie screen. For much of the year the ownership opens its gates for film screenings.

So starting at midnight the cemetery and Bon Iver's founder, singer and songwriter, Justin Vernon, programmed an all-night event that culminated in a two-hour performance by Bon Iver. The evening went as follows:

12 a.m.: Doors
12:30 a.m.: Bon Iver DJ Set I (see full set list below)
2 a.m.: The Feature Film: Bottle Rocket
3:30 a.m. Bon Iver DJ Set II (see full set list below)
4 a.m.: Documentary Film: Planet Earth (Jungles)
5:15 a.m.: Blessing of Audience and Stage by Buddhist Monks
5:45 a.m.: Bon Iver Performs
[LA Weekly]"

Darren Kim (our photographer) arrived at 4:15am Sunday morning (9/27). It was "foggy as hell". As you can see in the pictures, people were spread out on blankets and in sleeping bags on a large grass field like a giant slumber party. Before 5:00, Darren wandered over to visit Johnny Ramone. Amazingly, there at the grave was a black cat just hanging out (you can see in the pics). At 5:15 the monks came on like like a giant alarm that woke everyone in time for the sunrise show, though you couldn't actually see the sun ("it just got whiter").

Bon Iver

As the fog slowly cleared and daylight began to break, Bon Iver played an absolutely perfect set, hitting all of their songs. I have to believe even the dead people buried nearby appreciated the resonating beauty of his music, mostly from For Emma, Forever Ago, and some newer work. Justin made a disclaimer that unlike most bands, he would not be playing an encore. "We're a young band still. We don't have that many songs yet." And sure enough a few songs later, about an hour and fifteen minutes after the set began, he said, "This is the last song we know how to play. I'm a little embarrassed," before launching into a beautiful, eerie version of "Wolves," with everyone joining in on the chorus. [Indie Muse]
Megafaun was in the house and also joined Bon Iver on stage.

More pictures, some videos, and the three Bon Iver setlists, below...

Continue reading "Bon Iver @ sunrise, monks, a black cat & the ghost (grave) of Johnny Ramone in a Hollywood cemetery - pics, video, setlist "

DOWNLOAD: The Wheel - Whimper and Wail (MP3)

"The Wheel: Stark, eloquent Cash echoes." - NY Times

The Wheel

"Thirteen bands were scheduled to play the BrooklynVegan / Agency Group day party in Austin on Thursday, March 19, 2009. Twelve ended up playing - one of them twice. I think the story is that The Pains of Being Pure at Heart, who had a zillion other shows also scheduled during the SXSW week, got confused about what their set time was. For that reason (and traffic), they showed up too late to go on in their slot. Instead, The Wheel, who was our last-minute addition as opener on the inside stage, immediately went outside and played a second set on the larger outdoor stage in the late band's place. We got at least one "boo" when the "scheduling mixup" was announced, but what could we do? (sorry!) It was awesome of the Wheel to fill on a moment's notice. Hopefully the people outside enjoyed him after they got over the awkwardness. I didn't watch his second set, but he sounded amazing inside." [me]
By "he", I meant Nathaniel Rateliff whose official band name is now "Nathaniel Rateliff & The Wheel". The second Nathaniel left the stage (the first time) I ran up to him and asked if he would please play my CMJ show. He agreed, and now finally over six months later I'm happy to announce it that The Wheel will be appearing at the BV party at Music Hall of Williamsburg on October 20th (the show Fanfarlo are also playing).

On July 22nd of this year, The Wheel opened for Bon Iver (the opener of my CMJ show in 2007) in Nathaniel's hometown of Denver...

"Openers The Wheel were playing to a hometown crowd, but nonetheless got the loudest prolonged-cheer reception I have heard for any local band in a long time. Their intricate, melancholy songs are steeped in goodness and ready for a larger stage. The band is magnetically led by the wry, exceptional voice of frontman Nathaniel Rateliff (Born In The Flood) who in the oddest coincidence that you ever think could sound good, vocally evokes a young and impassioned Neil Diamond minus the glitter. The technicolor songs pack a punch, yet sounded timeless through a symphony of strings, aching harmonica and guitars, piano, intuitive drumming, and vocal harmonies that cut through the venue and held everyone's attention." [I Am Fuel You Are Friends]
If you don't make it to the October 20th Music Hall show, don't worry, it's CMJ. The Wheel (sometimes solo, and sometimes with a band) will be playing more than one show that week. One of those shows is October 23rd at Bowery Ballroom with Portugal. The Man, The Temper Trap, Drug Rug, and All The Day Holiday (tickets). Another one of those shows is a BrooklynVegan day party on Saturday, October 24th, at Pianos (many more details TBA on that one).

One MP3 is above. More songs at MySpace. Dates & videos below...

Continue reading "Nathaniel Rateliff & The Wheel (coming to BV-CMJ)"

Neko Case @ the 2009 Newport Folk Festival (more by Jim Brueckner)
Neko Case

"During the weekend of October 16th through October 18th, The New Yorker will present its tenth annual Festival, a three-day series of events that brings together some of the world's most talented and distinguished people in the fields of literature, art, film, music, humor, business, food, politics, design, and science....

...Pop-music offerings will include interviews with and performances by Neko Case, Bon Iver, Steve Earle, and Loudon Wainwright III; a pub-rock reunion with Ian Hunter, of Mott the Hoople, and Graham Parker, of Graham Parker and the Rumour; and a panel discussion about the music industry with Jace Clayton, Josh Deutsch, Melvin Gibbs, Danny Goldberg, and Livia Tortella. In addition, a special Brooklyn Playlist concert at Brooklyn's Bell House, curated by Sasha Frere-Jones and Kelefa Sanneh, will feature Dirty Projectors, House of Ladosha, Jubilee, and Liturgy."

This is a full three months before Bon Iver's other upcoming NYC show. More New Yorker announcements soon. "Tickets will go on sale on Friday, September 18th, at 12 noon, and may be purchased at newyorker.com/festival"

Bon Iver @ Sasquatch Fest (more by Chris Graham)
Bon Iver

Tickets are now on sale for all of Merkin Hall's upcoming 2009/10 concerts. Those shows include the NY Guitar Festival's Silent Films/Live Guitars series (previously mentioned here), which features David Bromberg and Marc Ribot playing alongside Charlie Chaplin films on January 14th, Bon Iver's Justin Vernon (Charlie Chaplin's The Gold Rush) with Steve Kimock (Buster Keaton's Cops) on January 21st, and more. The full lineup, with details, is below.

The venue is also hosting the New Sounds series, which includes performances by ETHEL and the Bang on a Can All-Stars. Details on those are below. Check out a video of the BoaC All-Stars rehearsing a Steve Reich piece from a few years back below too. You'll notice Bryce Dessner of the National is in the ensemble in that video. He's currently working on his own new piece with brother Aaron and Matthew Ritchie to debut at BAM this fall.

Also, as part of their trio of "Contemporary Contexts" concerts, Merkin Hall will be bringing Signal, who will premiere a new work from Nico Muhly and UK composer Harrison Birtwistle, in May.

The full schedule is below...

Continue reading "Bon Iver, Marc Ribot & other NY Guitar Fest tickets on sale ++ full upcomng Merkin Hall schedule (New Sounds, etc)"

"Bon Iver will perform a concert on Sunday, September 27th, 2009 as morning dawns over graves of silver screen legends at the Hollywood Forever Cemetery in Los Angeles, California. The gates will open at midnight on Saturday night with the performance to commence at 6am on Sunday. Tickets are $25 and include a coffee and pastry breakfast."