Entries tagged with: Fred Armisen

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Ian Rubbish opening for Vampire Weekend last weekend (more by Robert Altman)
Ian Rubbish Fred Armisen

A few weeks ago, Saturday Night Live ran a filmed segment on fictional UK punk Ian Rubbish (aka Fred Armisen) who hated everything except the late Margaret Thatcher. Well, Fred has been carrying on the joke. You may have seen him as Rubbish opening for Vampire Weekend at Roseland on Sunday, and now he's actually released an EP as Ian Rubbish -- including "Sweet Iron Lady" and "Maggie Thatcher" -- as a free download. You may remember when Fred and Dave Grohl had fun with '80s hardcore on SNL a while back.

If you haven't seen the Ian Rubbish SNL short, you can stream it below.

Continue reading "Fred Armisen's punk character Ian Rubbish opened for Vampire Weekend, released an EP (free download)"

photos by Robert Altman

Vampire Weekend @ Roseland Ballroom - 4/28/2013
Vampire Weekend

Vampire Weekend played their very sold out and small (for them) show at Roseland Ballroom last night (4/28) in support of their upcoming album, Modern Vampires of the City (due out 5/14 via XL). If you couldn't get in, did you watch the Steve Buscemi-directed live webcast? Did you maybe watch it at Brooklyn Bowl? Like they said they would, Vampire Weekend previewed material from the new album at the show, and videos of them playing two new songs -- "Obvious Bicycle" and "Everlasting Arms" -- can be watched below (via Consequence of Sound). Comedian/musician Fred Armisen, as Thatcher-loving punk Ian Rubbish, opened the show and Steve Buscemi came out of the control booth for an appearance as well. Pictures and VW's setlist from the show are in this post and you can stream the entire concert below.

Not very surprisingly, like Phoenix did, Vampire Weekend have given fans who missed their small album-preview show a chance to see them in a much larger space this fall, Barclays Center on September 20. Tickets for that huge show go on sale Saturday (5/4) at 10 AM. Also as mentioned, the band will make their return to Saturday Night Live on May 11 when Kristen Wiig hosts.

Updated dates are listed, along with more pictures, the setlist, and videos from Roseland, below...

Continue reading "Vampire Weekend played Roseland Ballroom (pics, videos, setlist), announce Barclays Center show (updated dates)"

White Lung at SXSW 2013 (more by Amanda Hatfield)
White Lung

today in NYC
* Whiplash @ UCB
* Styles P @ BB King's
* Brain Cloud @ Barbes
* Chicha Libre @ Barbes
* Furthur @ The Capitol Theatre
* Joe Pug, Erin Ivey @ Union Hall
* Marc Maron @ Le Poisson Rouge
* Kim Richey & Darden Smith @ Joe's Pub
* Liam Finn, Railbird @ Knitting Factory
* Suuns, Weeknight @ Mercury Lounge
* Marc Broussard, Courrier @ City Winery
* Muse, Biffy Clyro @ Madison Square Garden
* Wyatt Cenac, Mark Normand, Liam McEneaney @ Littlefield
* Bobby Long, Michael Bernard Fitzgerald @ Mercury Lounge
* Matt Costa, The Blank Tapes, Vandaveer @ Bowery Ballroom
* White Lung, Syphilitic Lust, Boca Raton, Goosebumps @ The Acheron
* Jesse Harris, Sophie Auster, Leaves of Green @ Rockwood Music Hall
* The Hysterics, In School, Nuclear Spring, Solid Attitude @ Death By Audio
* J.Period, DJ Concerned, DJ Timoteo Gigante, DJ Wisdon @ Brooklyn Bowl
* Foot Village, Hurricanes of Love, Flaming Dragons of Middle Earth @ Silent Barn
* Living Room, The Reptilian, The Natural Disasters, The Moon Tooth @ Big Snow
* Swaai Boys, Gondola, Horrible Present, Goodbye, Forget It, South Paws @ Pianos
* R. Stevie Moore, Total Slacker, Tropical Ooze, Cassie Ramone (DJ Set) @ Glasslands
* Presidents of the United States of America, Eternal Summers, pow wow! @ Irving Plaza
* Silent Drape Runners, Thelma and the Sleaze, Clinical Trials, Wojcik, Little Band of Sailors @ Cake Shop

If you're headed to Irving Plaza to see The Presidents of the United States of America play their first album in full, get there early for Eternal Summers. They're currently taking pledges/pre-orders for their new album on PledgeMusic.

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This past Saturday's episode of SNL, which featured a performance by Miguel and a new Daft Punk ad, also included a Fred Armisen-led skit, which paid a "punk tribute" to the late Margaret Thatcher. The skit featured a band called Ian Rubbish and the Bizzaros, who write songs about the queen and other British politics (albeit from a different perspective than most punks had). Check out the video of that skit below. And it's not the first time Fred Armisen brought his knowledge of punk to SNL.

Empire of the Sun, the post-Sleepy Jackson pop project from Luke Steele, will release their second album, Ice on the Dune, in June. You can stream first single, "Alive," below.

Did you get your taxes done?

What else?

Continue reading "What's going on Monday? (Tax Day)"

by Fred Pessaro // BBG

D'Angelo / Elvis Costello + Princess / Chris Rock & more @ Carnegie Hall
Prince Tribute at Carnegie Hall, March 7, 2013
Prince Tribute at Carnegie Hall, March 7, 2013
Prince Tribute at Carnegie Hall, March 7, 2013


Amidst a snowy midtown backdrop, Carnegie Hall generated a little heat when the Michael Dorf-produced Prince Tribute opened last night (3/7). Stacked with performers giving props to the man in purple and paisley, the lineup featured some of the same names from the previous evening's "rehearsal" at City Winery, as well as surprise appearances from names like Chris Rock and more. Backed by The Roots with guitarist Wendy Melvion (of Prince's backing band The Revolution), D'Angelo show-closing numbers "It's Gonna Be a Beautiful Night" / "1999" were the clear highlights of the evening, with performances from Bilal (doing "Sister" and channeling Keith Sweat circa 1990s), Bettye LaVette ("Kiss"), Sandra Bernhard ('Little Red Corvette") and Fdeluxe ("High Fashion/Mutiny") also causing impromptu aisle dances. Fun night, and it was great to see people up and out of their seats, wilding out in a buttoned-up place like Carnegie Hall.

More pics from last night including the setlist, The Waterboys, The Roots, Eric Leeds, Diane Birch, the Cardigans' Nina Perrson, DeVotchka, Bhi Bhiman, Kat Edmonson, Blind Boys of Alabama, Citizen Cope & Alice Smith, Talib Kweli, Princess (Gretchen Lieberum & Maya Rudolph) and all iterations there within, are below.

Continue reading "D'Angelo, The Roots, Elvis Costello, Bilal, Chris Rock, Bettye LaVette & more played the Prince tribute @ Carnegie Hall (pics) "

photos by Robert Altman

Elvis Costello / Nina Persson & Maya Rudolph @ City Winery
Prince Tribute at City Winery
Prince Tribute at City Winery

Elvis Costello, The Roots, Devotchka, The Waterboys, Nina Persson, Maya Rudolph (performing as "Princess" with Gretchen Lieberum), Fred Armisen, Bilal and more all blessed the stage at the "rehearsal" for the Prince Tribute scheduled for Carnegie Hall tonight (3/7). The show, which went down at City Winery last night (3/6), was sold-out and featured a night of all covers of songs by the purple one, including classics like "When Doves Cry," "Nothing Compares 2 U," "Purple Rain" and many many other  staples.

D'Angelo, who played Brooklyn Bowl on Sunday night and will hits Carnegie Hall tonight, did not appear. Neither did Prince Rogers Nelson (the honoree of the evening), but that might have been for the best considering his recent penchant for destruction....

Prince tweet

#rockgodstatus or #dickmove? You be the judge.

Of course Black Thought is of The Roots, Jimmy Fallon's house band. If you missed it, Prince appeared on Fallon late last week.

More pictures from City Winery last night are below.

Continue reading "The Roots covered Prince w/ Elvis Costello, Devotchka, Maya Rudolph & more @ City Winery (pics); Carnegie Hall is tonight"

Demetri MartinDemetri Martin

Demetri Martin is set to release his second book, Point Your Face at This, on March 13 which "contains hundreds of drawings, jokes, and page-long bits, showcasing Martin's particular penchant for brevity and a sensibility all its own." Demetri will be going on tour to support the book's release and that will include five NYC area shows: the NYCB Theatre in Westbury, NY on March 8; Wellmont Theatre in NJ on March 9; the Tarrytown Theatre in Tarrytown, NY on March 15; Gramercy Theatre on March 18 and The Bell House on March 19.

Tickets to his Gramercy Theatre and NYCB Theatre shows go on sale Friday (1/25) at 10 AM; as do tickets for his Bell House and Tarrytown show. Tickets to the Wellmont Theatre go on sale Friday at noon. All Demetri Martin tour dates are listed below.

While on the subject of funny people, you may have seen on our "tickets on sale" post today, Fred Armisen is playing Bowery Ballroom on February 19 and tickets went on sale today and are still available. At the time we were "not exactly sure what he'll be doing" but Fred was kind enough to write in to say that the show will be "some comedy, some drumming, and some friendly guests!" So there you go.

Fred likes to drum, as you may know, from his time spent behind the kit in Trenchmouth, to his character Jens Hannemann's "Complicated Drumming" instructional videos, to his recent appearance with Yo La Tengo on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon, which you can watch below...

Continue reading "Demetri Martin releasing a new book, going on tour (dates); Fred Armisen playing NYC at Bowery Ballroom"

Wheelie

We're not exactly sure what he'll be doing but Fred Armisen is playing Bowery Ballroom on February 19. Tickets are on sale today at noon.

Tickets to see Pissed Jeans at Bowery Ballroom go on sale today at noon.

Tickets to the just-added second Lord Huron show at Music Hall of Williamsburg go on AmEx presale today at noon.

Tickets to see Mac DeMarco at Music Hall of Williamsburg go on AmEx presale today at noon.

Tickets to see Sky Ferreira and How to Dress Well at Bowery Ballroom and Music Hall of Williamsburg go on AmEx presale today at noon.

The Joy Formidable play two shows in NYC: April 17 at Music Hall of Williamsburg and April 18 at Webster Hall. Tickets to both shows go on AmEx presale today at noon.

Tickets to see Everything Everything at Bowery Ballroom go on AmEx presale today at noon.

Tickets to see The Black Angels at Webster Hall go on AmEx presale today at noon.

Tickets to see Suuns at Mercury Lounge go on AmEx presale today at noon.

Tickets to see Fu Manchu at Bowery Ballroom go on AmEx presale today at noon.

Spacehog play a late show at Mercury Lounge on February 26. Tickets go on AmEx presale today at noon.

Tickets to see Akron/Family at Bowery Ballroom go on AmEx presale today at noon.

Lemonade play Cameo on Valentines Day (2/14) and tickets to that show are on sale now.

Little Green Cars play Music Hall of Williamsburg on March 26. Tickets to that show go on AmEx presale today at noon.

Though the lineup won't be announced for a while, 'Early Bird' and 'Three Day' passes for the 2013 Newport Folk Festival are already sold out. It's not too late to get a 'Two Day' or 'Single Day' ticket though.

Graham Parker & the Rumour play Gramercy Theatre on April 14. Tickets are on sale now.

Industrial legends KMFDM play Irving Plaza on March 21. Tickets are on sale now.

Jessie Ware at The Box, Dec. 2012 (more by Amanda Hatfield)
Jessie Ware

Soundgarden at Irving Plaza, Nov. 2012 (more by Dana (distortion) Yavin)
Jessie Ware

today in NYC
* Lady Rizo @ Joe's Pub
* Brian Settles @ Barbes
* Mike Daisey @ Joe's Pub
* Soundgarden @ Terminal 5
* MS MR, Gospels @ Mercury Lounge
* The Mandingo Ambassadors @ Barbes
* John Cale @ Brooklyn Academy of Music
* School of Seven Bells @ Dr. Martens Store
* Andrew James, Dub Trio @ Rockwood Music Hall
* Heliotropes, Gang Signs, Blackout @ Union Pool
* Black Prairie, John Wesley Harding @ Union Hall
* John Darnielle of The Mountain Goats @ Studio X
* WIERD w/ La Misma, Black Boot @ Home Sweet Home
* The Airborne Toxic Event, The Chevin @ Webster Hall
* Agusti Fernandez, Joe Morris, Nate Wooley @ The Stone
* Infected Mushroom DJ, The M Machine DJ @ Brooklyn Bowl
* G. Love & Special Sauce, Swear and Shake @ Irving Plaza
* The Trews, The Constant, the Rotaries @ Bowery Electric
* Child Bite, Firecracker Firecracker, The Flag @ Death By Audio
* Vaudeville, KO.DO.NA, Baby Copperhead, Ed Askew Band @ Cake Shop
* Zedd, Jessie Ware, Twenty One Pilots, Robert DeLong @ Highline Ballroom
* HUERCO S., Anthony Naples, Terekke, Bookworms & Steve Summers @ Cameo Gallery
* Mykki Blanco, Boychild, Psychoegyptian, Fatherhood, Dope Body @ Mercury Lounge
* Big Terrific w/ John Mulaney, James Adomian, Jackie Kashian, Kara Klenk @ Cameo
* Wild International, Jamaican Queens, Ludwig Persik, Steel Phantoms @ Glasslands
* A Sunny Day in Glasgow, Friend Roulette, Desert Stars, Relatives, Heidi Harris @ Pianos
* Electroputas, Beverly, Eye Banner, Metal Mountains @ Secret Project Robot
* Arrington de Dionyso, Greg Saunier, C. Spencer Yeh, Ross Chait Myles Eammons Duo, Lea Bertucci @ Silent Barn
* 'Allen Ginsberg's First Blues' w/ Lou Reed, Anne Waldman, Ambrose Bye, CA Conrad, Steven Taylor, Hettie Jones, Arthur's Landing & more @ Housing Works

Tonight's John Cale show at BAM is a tribute to Nico with a number of guests including Kim Gordon, Mark Lanegan, Sharon Van Etten, Magnetic Fields, and more.

Screaming Females are guests tonight on the Chris Gethard Show which airs tonight at 11 PM.

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Yo La Tengo's new album, Fade, is out this week and the band appeared last night on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon, performing "Ohm" with Fred Armisen on second drums. (He played with them at one of their Hanukkah shows you may remember.) YLT also did "I'll Be Around" as an online exclusive and you can watch both below.

Electronic pop trio Darkstar are releasing their new album, News from Nowhere, on February 5 via Warp, but you can stream the entire thing ahead of its release, below.

What else?

Continue reading "What's going on Wednesday?"

Yo La Tengo + Fred Armisen @ Maxwell's, 12/9/2012 (via @j_maxed)
YLT

Sunday night was the second night of Yo La Tengo's annual Hanukkah Week residency at Maxwell's with surprise openers Fred Armisen and Sun Ra Arkestra. (Lambchop's Kurt Wagner made the night's mix CD.) Fred actually pulled double duty, playing drums for YLT's entire set (!) making for a double percussion evening that included covers of the Velvet Underground's "Who Loves the Sun?" and the Ramones' "Can't Make it On Time." The whole Sunday setlist is below (and check out Saturday's HERE.).

Any guesses as to who will open for Yo La Tengo tonight? UPDATE: It's The Feelies!

While Fred was laying down the beat, his voice could be heard on last night's episode of The Simpsons where he and Carrie Brownstein played a Portland couple who moved next door to Homer and Marge. The episode also featured Patton Oswalt and The Decemberists. In a strange coincidence, Portlandia returns with a new episode this Friday night (12/14) before the IFC sketch show comes back in earnest on January 4 (there's a private premiere party at a museum in NYC tonight).

The Simpsons
The Simpsons

Fred was also on this week's Jamie Foxx-hosted SNL, but just barely.

Fred also recently sat in with Dinosaur Jr. at their You're Living All Over Me 25th Anniversary show at Terminal 5 and will be hosting the Snow Ball Ball at The Bell House this Sunday (12/16) which is now sold out.

Last but not least, Fred recently gave us his Top 10 LPs of 2012. Check that out, and take a look at Blonde Redhead's too (theirs contains Yo La Tengo opener Sun Ra Arkestra).

Yo La Tengo's Hanukkah Night 2 setlist is below.

Continue reading "Fred Armisen joined Yo La Tengo & Sun Ra Arkestra for Hanukkah (setlist), was on the Simpsons w/ The Decemberists; The Feelies open tonight"

(via Yo La Tengo twitter)
Yo La Tengo

Yo La Tengo played their first of eight sold out Hanukkah shows at Maxwell's last night (12/8) with opening sets by a reunited The Raybeats and comedian Emo Philips, and the mixtape made by Tom Scharpling (who was part of his own guest-filled event one night earlier). It was a benefit for the Fund to Rebuild Hoboken.

YLT took to their blog to recap the show, and of the openers, they wrote:

We've been seeing the Raybeats for so long that we remember when they were being billed as the Ex-Contortions (we also recall rotary phones, no-security airline check-in . . . stories? oh do we have stories!). Last night they did a too-short smorgasbord from their two lp's--can we cite the set's brevity to rationalize our not coming up with any photos of them? Perhaps, but how do we explain not wrangling drummer Don Christensen to reprise his impLOG version of Jewish songwriters Leiber and Stoller's "On Broadway"?

---

Am I right to suggest that local Emo Philips appearances are nearly as rare as those of the Raybeats? The jokes were coming so fast, it's difficult for me to pick a favorite. But I'll bet WFMU air personality Gaylord Fields would have no such problem: I could hear his dumbfounded laughter when Emo pulled off a punchline drawing the distinction between the Latin and Greek meanings of "homo." (I'm sure Gaylord will be only too happy to explain.)

You can read more HERE. WFMU DJ Jesse Jarnow has the setlist, which included two new songs, a cover of Richard Hell's "The Kid With the Replaceable Head" (featuring Jody Harris of the Raybeats on guitar) and a cover of The Monkees' "Take A Giant Step."

YLT continue their run tonight. Any guesses on who opens?

UPDATE: Tonight's (12/9) openers are Fred Armisen and The Sun Ra Arkestra, and Lambchop man main Kurt Wagner made the mix CD.

Full setlist and another pic from the show, below...

Continue reading "The Raybeats & Emo Phillips opened for Yo La Tengo, Tom Scharpling made the mix tape (setlist)"

words by Phillip Pantuso, photos by Gretchen Robinette

J. Mascis / Frank Black
Dinosaur Jr.
Dinosaur Jr.

Throughout the 90s and the first half of the 2000s, Dinosaur Jr. was one of the last rock groups you would have expected to get the old band back together, go on tour, and record new music--not to mention new music that's every bit as good as anything the original lineup made in the 80s. When J Mascis unceremoniously kicked out Lou Barlow, his high school friend and longtime bandmate, in 1989, it seemed like a mercy killing of the original lineup, which had devolved into a psychodramatic mess, marred by lack of communication and irreconcilable personality difference between Mascis and Barlow. ("It makes me sick that I spent six or seven years putting my heart and soul into that band," Barlow told Cut zine in 1990. "They're sleazebag snob pigs like no one I have met in my entire life. J's always been an asshole.") Mascis and Murph, and then just Mascis, went on to record a string of major-label records throughout the 90s that, though inconsistent, contain some of Dinosaur Jr.'s best and most well-known songs.

When Mascis killed Dinosaur Jr. in 1997, it seemed inconceivable that, a decade later, Mascis, Barlow and Murph would reunite. Time heals all wounds, I guess. It's perhaps less surprising that the band would be able to ably reprise their sprawling, melodic, blitzkrieg guitar-rock sound. Three records in to the latter-day reign of Dinosaur Jr., the band sounds as good as they ever have.

On Saturday at Terminal 5, Dinosaur Jr. celebrated the 25th anniversary of the release of You're Living All Over Me, their second album and the one that made nonchalance cool, made the extended guitar solo cool (again), and wedded melodic tendencies with noise and feedback in a theretofore unheard of fashion in the indie rock underground. The band opened their set with "Thumb," from 1991's Green Mind, with Suzanne Thorp of Mercury Rev guesting on flute, before Mascis matter-of-factly announced that now they'd be playing You're Living All Over Me in full.

A sleepy-looking Lee Ranaldo came out to share vocals with J on "Little Fury Things." Guests, some announced ahead of time, would be a recurring theme throughout the night, but not until later. Dinosaur Jr. ripped through the songs on their best album as if it were 1987 all over again. "Sludgefeast" was a punishing onslaught of guitar and staccato, gunfire drums, with Mascis's high lonesome whine cutting through the gain and distortion. "Tarpit" set off joyous dancing, propelled by Barlow's chunky bass chords and a deafening roar from Mascis's Jazzmaster that threatened to draw blood from the ears.

Watching Barlow and Mascis play on stage, it's not hard to extrapolate the personality differences that created their rift. Barlow, with his black Rickenbacker slung low, literally bounces from one foot to the other when playing, the joy at doing just this very thing--playing to an audience--so evident. He smiles, he cracks jokes, he acts as if he's living through the music. Mascis, on the other hand, with his laconic, slowhands style and deadpan announcements ("All right. Thanks a lot. That was side one."), plays as if the music lives through him. He's the hermetic savant tuned in to a frequency no one else can hear.

Barlow brought out a ukulele for "Poledo," the "awkward end to the amazing record," in his words. The cavernous space of Terminal 5 made the strident desolation of the song even more acute.

The second half of the show is the stuff legendary bootlegs are made of. A succession of guests filed onstage to help Dinosaur Jr. play their songs, or to transform them into other bands entirely. The first was Frank Black, who sang and played guitar on "Almost Fare," from this year's I Bet On Sky. Next, the band plus Black covered one of Black's songs--"Tame," from The Pixies' Doolittle. Black roared the chorus, tossed a painting into the first rows of the crowd, and exited. Kurt Vile, whose band opened the show, and Al Cisneros from Sleep were next. Cisneros took over bass duties from Barlow for a couple of songs, including the doom metal glazer "Alone" from 1997's Hand It Over. Harvey Milk's Kyle Spence took the drums for that one.

Smiths and Modest Mouse guitarist Johnny Marr and Broken Social Scene guru Kevin Drew emerged to play "The Wagon" with J, Lou and Murph. Then they covered Smiths track "The Boy With the Thorn In His Side," the words to which J was, uh, a little unsure of. Melvins drummer Dale Crover relieved Murph behind the kit for a skin-searing rendition of "Training Ground," a song by Mascis and Barlow's pre-Dinosaur hardcore band, Deep Wound. Don Fleming of Gumball and Dante Ferrando of Iron Cross helped the band cover "Crucified," and Kim Gordon gave a tempestuous performance on "Don't", Barlow's song from Bug that directly addresses the fractured relationship between him and Mascis. Gordon screamed, bellowed and cooed the song's one lyric ("Why don't you like me?") over and over again, dropping to her knees and falling to the stage like she was having an exorcism. It was intense. If Sonic Youth is over, she should start a hardcore band.

The encore began with a cover of the Stooges classic, "T.V. Eye," with Tommy Stinson on bass and Fred Armisen (whose show, Portlandia, will feature an appearance from J Mascis in its upcoming third season) on drums. Dinosaur Jr. closed with two classics: "Start Choppin" and "Freak Scene," the song that invented the slacker generation. It was a poignant, circle-closing moment. "Because when I need a friend," J sang, "it's still you," we all responded. The night was an amazing tribute to a great band, 25 years removed from their (so-far) signature achievement and, improbably, still going strong.

More pictures, some videos, and the setlist from the show (which also counted John Petkovic of Death of Samantha as a guest), below...

Continue reading "Dinosaur Jr. and many guests celebrated 'You're Living All Over Me' at Terminal 5 (pics, videos, setlist)"

by Klaus Kinski (and Fred Armisen)

Fred meditates on his top ten...
IMAGE

In my tenure as BV's tallest and prettiest contributor, I've noticed that one of the most polarizing figures we mention on here is the great Fred Armisen. It's like, any time we mention this dude all the negative-Nancys crawl out of the wood work. Oh well... You know what they say ('they' being people who use terrible quips to express themselves); "Haters gonna hate." The reality is, Fred Armisen rules. He's one of my most favorite, funny, uber-talented oddballs in the biz. He's consistently funny on SNL, no matter how abysmal the sketch may be. His show Portlandia (which returns January 4th 2013 on IFC) is one of the funniest shows to hit the gogglebox in recent memory. And he keeps it real with small-venue residencies and club shows. Fred recently hipped us to the top 10 records of 2012 that floated his boat.

In addition to Portlandia's imminent return (many guest stars included), and the Portlandia book which is currently available, don't forget the Fred is hosting the Snow Ball Ball at the Bell (Ball) House on Sunday December 16. The show also features guest DJs Tunde Adebimpe (from TV On the Radio), Peter Hale (from Here We Go Magic) and more!

Check out Fred's 'Best of' list, below...

Continue reading "Fred Armisen names his Top 10 LPs of 2012; 'Portlandia' Season 3 coming soon"

Map from 'Portlandia: A Visitor's Guide'
Portlandia

Fred Armisen and Eleanor Friedberger are appearing this Thursday (11/15) at Barnes & Noble Union Square in NYC for the bookstore's "Upstairs at the Square" series which is hosted by NPR's Katherine Lanpher. Fred will be talking about his and Carrie Brownstein's new book, PORTLANDIA: A Guide for Visitors and other subjects, with Eleanor Friedberger performing live. Fred's a drummer (among other things), so maybe he'll play along too.

Eleanor just wrapped up recording her new solo album for Merge which she recorded at DFA studios. Maybe you heard her preview new material at the Merge CMJ showcase last month? While you wait for that to come out, Eleanor appears on the new Christmas album Holidays Rule where she contributes a cover of Elvis' "Santa Please Bring My Baby (Back to Me)." Other artists on the compilation include Tame Impala, The Shins, Andrew Bird, Rufus Wainwright with Sharon Van Etten, Paul McCartney and more. You can stream the whole thing via Rdio below.

Meanwhile, Eleanor's brother (and Fiery Furnaces bandmate) Matthew Friedberger is currently on tour with The Sea & Cake which stops in spookily-lit Marfa, TX tonight. All tour dates are listed below.

When not promo-ing his new book (you preview it here and watch the video trailer for it below), Fred Armisen is staying busy on SNL where he recently played Mayor Bloomberg giving one of his post-Sandy NYC addresses, shoutout to "Homeland" included, below...

Continue reading "Portlandia Book out now; new Eleanor Friedberger LP soon; Fred Armisen & Eleanor Friedberger appearing at B&N this week"

photos by David Andrako

Father John Misty / Andrew WK & Matt Sweeney
Petty Fest 2012
Petty Fest 2012

Petty Fest returned to NYC last night (10/24) at Webster Hall for a night of Tom Petty covers with a huge lineup of contributors backed by The Cabin Down Below Band. Cyndi Lauper, Fred Armisen, John McEnroe and Alia Shawkat were surprise guests. Nicole Atkins, Nick Zinner, and Josh Lattanzi teamed up for "Mary Jane's Last Dance," Father John Misty (who also played his second of two sold out shows in NYC last night and will be back at Webster Hall in January) did "Learning To Fly" and "I Won't Back Down," Har Mar Superstar did "Don't Do Me Like That," Andrew WK & Matt Sweeney did "Listen To Her Heart," Albert Hammond Jr. did "I Need To Know" (Fab played the show too), Caveman (who just played our day party and team up with Albert for a show again this Friday) did "Don't Come Around Here," plus a whole lot more.

More pictures from the Jameson-sponsored benefit show (all money went to Sweet Relief), and the setlist, below...

Continue reading "Petty Fest pics & setlist (Andrew WK, Father John Misty, Har Mar Superstar, Nick Zinner, Albert Hammond, Cyndi Lauper, more)"

Flying Lotus @ American Museum of Natural History in 2009 (more by Zach Dilgard)
Flying Lotus

today in NYC
* ASSSSCAT 3000 @ UCB
* New Yorker Festival
* Les Hot Club @ Barbes
* The Four Bags @ Barbes
* Bob Telson @ Joe's Pub
* Blondie @ The Capitol Theatre
* Lotion, Edsel @ The Rock Shop (matinee)
* ZZ Top @ Count Basie Theatre (NJ)
* Celtic Thunder @ Wellmont Theatre
* Leyna Marika Papach @ The Stone
* Ian Anderson @ NJ Performing arts Center
* The Empty Cage Quartet @ The Stone
* The Moth @ Music Hall of Williamsburg
* Believers, Landlady, Railbird @ Glasslands
* Hannibal Buress @ Knitting Factory Brooklyn
* Sewing Machines, Beloved Binge, Poingly @ Cake Shop
* Census, Lantern, Spacin', Acrobat Twin @ Shea Stadium
* Kath Bloom, Ed Askew, Tica Douglas @ Pete's Candy Store
* Flying Lotus, Thundercat, Teebs, Jeremiah Jae @ Terminal 5
* Punch Brothers, Tom Brosseau @ The Paramount (Huntington, NY)
* The Everymen, The Brooklyn What, Secret Country @ Public Assembly
* Royal Baths, Larkin Grimm, Behavior, M. Lamar @ The Bowery Electric
* Nightmare River Band, Jack Grace, Paleface, Jarrod Dickenson @ Littlefield
* The Dearloves, Eastern Hollows, Dead Stars, Memphibians @ Mercury Lounge
* Spectre Folk, Images, Scott & Charlene's Wedding, Gem Trails @ Big Snow
* Kids & Explosions, Steel Phantoms, Dance For The Dying, Ducky @ Cameo Gallery
* Ghost Light, Phone Home, No One & The Somebodies, The Drinkers Themselves @ Deliquency
* Aye Nako, Shady Hawkins w/ readings by Cristy Road, Mimi Nguyen, Osa Atoe, Ana Vo, Mariam Bastani@ Death By Audio
* Kitty Pryde, The World Is A Beautiful Place and I Am No Longer Afraid To Die, Tigers Jaw @ Stevens Insitute of Technology

You can also catch Andrew WK playing with David Blaine at Pier 54 today at 7:30, live and streaming online.

Fred Armisen, who maybe you caught flashing an upskirt on SNL last night, helps close out the New Yorker Festival today along with Carrie Brownstein "for an afternoon With the IFC show "Portlandia," featuring a conversation with Margaret Talbot."

Big Bird also made a more family-friendly appearance on SNL last night. Watch the video below. Muse was the musical guest, and those videos are HERE.

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Perfume Genius made a video for "Take Me Home." Check it out below.

What else?

Continue reading "What's going on Sunday?"

Frank Ocean, Seth MacFarlane & Fred Armisen (who is no longer Obama) @ SNL
Frank Ocean

We actually already posted this in WGO Sunday, but in case you missed the awesomeness:

Frank Ocean appeared on Saturday Night Live last night (9/16) to perform "Thinking About You" and "Pyramids," and was joined by John Mayer on guitar. He also just revealed the music video for "Pyramids," which also features an appearance from John Mayer.
Frank Ocean plays live at ATP NY on Friday night. Watch the videos of his SNL performance and the "Pyramids" music video below.

Continue reading "watch Frank Ocean on Saturday Night Live & his new video for "Pyramids" (videos)"

New Yorker Festival

The 2012 New Yorker Festival happens October 5 - 7, bringing together writers, musicians, filmmakers, chefs, deep thinkers and all other sorts of creative types. Highlights for the 13th annual fest include "Portlandia Live" with Fred Armisen, Carrie Brownstein and special guests performing sketches live; Atul Gawande and the band Vampire Weekend; Sasha Frere-Jones and the singer Norah Jones; Alec Wilkinson and the neo-bluegrass band Punch Brothers; Ariel Levy and the singer-songwriter Lucinda Williams; John Seabrook and the indie-folk band Beirut; and Ben Greenman and singer, songwriter, and producer Raphael Saadiq.

Other notable events: the Wachowskis will present their new film Cloud Atlas with co-director Tom Tykwer; Mad Men's John Slattery hosts a panel on "period acting"; Paul Muldoon will interview Patti Smith and loads more meetings of minds.

Tickets to the 2012 New Yorker Festival will go on sale on Friday, September 14 at noon. Full line-up is below.

Continue reading "New Yorker Festival 2012 schedule (Portlandia, Beirut, Vampire Weekend, Lucinda Williams, Raphael Saadiq, Punch Brothers and more) "

Chloe Sevigny @ Ace Hotel for Pussy Riot event (via jillypeppa)
Chloe

IFC reports:

Academy Award®-nominated and Golden Globe®-winning actress Chloë Sevigny (Big Love, American Horror Story) is packing her bags and heading to Portlandia for season three of IFC's original comedy series. Created by Fred Armisen, Carrie Brownstein and Jonathan Krisel, the Emmy® nominated and Peabody Award-winning show depicts a romanticized and dreamy rendering of the city they love, Portland, OR. Season three is in production now and premieres in January 2013 with ten all-new episodes on IFC.

Sevigny will appear in multiple episodes throughout the third season as Fred and Carrie's roommate named Alexandra. Kyle MacLachlan (Made In Jersey, Desperate Housewives) will also return as the city's mayor. Stay tuned for more new residents visiting Portlandia during season three. Guest stars last season included Jeff Goldblum (Jurassic Park, Independence Day), Tim Robbins (The Shawshank Redemption) and Kristen Wiig (Bridesmaids, SNL).
Speaking of SNL, its news season (sans Kristen Wiig) begins in September.

Chloe recently took part in a reading at Ace Hotel for Pussy Riot who were then found guilty and sentenced to two years in prison. Watch video from the event below...

Continue reading "Chloe Sevigny joins Season 3 Portlandia cast; Watch her read for Pussy Riot"

photos by Chris Graham and Rae Graham

Jack White/The Roots
Jack White
Jack White

The one galvanizing main-stage performance at the Sasquatch festival this year was Jack White's weapons-grade electric guitar soloing on Saturday. Otherwise, it was by the book in the best possible sense. Thousands of people gathered peacefully and everything was on schedule.

The festival, which ended Monday with a performance by Beck, featured dozens of live rock, rap, electronic music and comedy acts packing five stages for four days over the sunny Memorial Day weekend...

...Oakland's Tune-Yards mesmerized at the Bigfoot Stage Saturday. Leader Merrill Garbus faced the full yellow sun and belted out powerful melodies in her alto voice that seemed beamed in from African radio. She used looping pedals to blend the vocals with drums and modified ukulele, which she also played live. But her bassist and jazz horn players sent the music through the roof, chipping in on junkyard percussion -- dented pieces of metal hit with drum sticks. [Seattle Times]

The Sasquatch Music Festival happened Memorial Day Weekend in Gorge, WA and Day 2 (Saturday, May 26) insanely packed with talent, featuring sets from Jack White, The Roots, tUnE-yArDs, Purity Ring and lots, lots more. It was so overstuffed, we're breaking Saturday's pictures into two parts. See more pics of Jack White and The Roots' Sasquatch set, plus other artists below, with more to come. Check out Day 1 photos HERE.

Continue reading "Sasquatch 2012 in pics - Day 2, Part 1 (Jack White, The Roots, tUnE-yArDs, Purity Ring, Alabama Shakes, Kurt Vile and more)"

by Bill Pearis

"AT THE THAT DOG REUNION SHOW OMG THEY ARE THE BEST!!!!" - @cassieramone

that dog mhow

As mentioned before, it's 90's Week in NYC, with Garbarge and Afghan Whigs making big returns to the stage and the flannel-era hat trick was completed last night at Music Hall of Williamsburg with alt-rockers that dog. I was never a giant fan, but I knew more songs that I thought I would, and the band sounded great, nailing those close, three part harmonies -- and Petra Haden's violin is still a force. The crowd was really singing along and that dog. were in great spirits too, especially bassist Rachel Haden and drummer Tony Maxwell who both cracked jokes the whole night. Anna Waronker was her sarcastic self too, though tempered a bit by motherhood, cutely saying hi to her baby in the balcony between songs. An extended, five-song encore brought the set to 22 songs, about an hour and a half. The crowd really didn't want it to end.

Of course, they can go to see that dog play again tonight (5/25) at MHoW -- tickets are still available.

Speaking of cracking jokes, ex-SNL castmember (and ex- Petra Hayden bf) Fred Armisen opened the show with a loose, very funny, music-based set, where he did impressions of Elvis Costello, a man at a doo-wop concert in the '50s, and some audience participation too, some of it unwanted. Kurt Braunohler opens tonight's show.

that dog.'s MHoW setlist is below.

Continue reading "that dog. played Music Hall of Williamsburg (setlist) and will again tonight (tickets still available)"

that dog

As reported previously, '90s alt-rockers that dog. are playing Music Hall of Williamsburg on May 24, the band's first NYC show in 15 years with Fred Armisen opening. That show sold out and the band added a second MHoW show the next night, Friday, May 25 with comedian openers Kurt Braunohler and Baron Vaughn. Tickets are still available to that one.

If you'd like to go for free, we're giving away a pair of tickets to the show of your choice. Details are below.

Oh, and speaking of Kurt Braunohler, he isn't playing the "Tell Your Friends! It's The Spring Fling!" at the Bell House tonight (5/15), but his partner in crime Kristen Schaal is along with host Liam McEneaney and fellow comedians Janeane Garofalo and Christian Finnegan, plus musical guest Hand Job Academy. Tickets are still available.

Continue reading "that dog. playing 2 Brooklyn shows (win tix); Kristen Schaal & many more playing the Bell House (tonight)"

by Klaus Kinski

Fred Armisen & a fan @ Coachella
Fred Armisen

Did you go to Coachella this year? I didn't. More importantly, just like he did back in February, Klaus favorite and Buzzcocks fan Fred Armisen will have another 3 Sunday long residency at Brooklyn's Union Pool! The shows will take place May 6, 13, and 20 and are currently on sale now!

by Bill Pearis

that dog

And the '90s reunions just keep coming! that dog. will play their first NYC show in 15 years on Thursday, May 24 at Music Hall of Williamsburg. Their old pal Fred Armisen will open. Tickets are on sale this Friday (3/9) at noon (though AmEx presale starts today at noon).

The progeny of LA music biz folks, that dog. formed in 1991 and released three albums of poppy punk, distinguished in part by Petra Haden's scratchy violin playing. "He's Kissing Christian" and "Never Say Never" were staples on alt-rock radio and 120 Minutes. that dog. was put to sleep in 1997 after their third album but the original line-up got back together last August for two sold out hometown shows at the Troubador. Catch up via Spotify or watch a few of their classic videos (some directed by pal Spike Jonze) at the bottom of this post.

Continue reading "that dog. playing Music Hall of Williamsburg in May"

Justin Timberlake

Last night on SNL. Official (high quality) video below...

Continue reading "watch Justin Timberlake impersonate Bon Iver on SNL (video)"

St. Vincent @ Portlandia @ Bowery Ballroom (more by Dana (distortion) Yavin)
St Vincent

Look for St. Vincent "on a special Valentine's Day episode of Gossip Girl, Feb 13, performing "Cruel" and "Cheerleader." The show airs Monday, February 13, at 8pm/7pmc on The CW." I honestly didn't even realize Gossip Girl was still a thing until I heard this news. I do however religiously watch Portlandia which featured a guest spot by Annie this week, about two weeks after she was Fred & Carrie's guest at Bowery Ballroom. You can watch her clip from the TV show (Isaac Brock was on the episode too), with a bunch of tour dates and other stuff, below...

Continue reading "St. Vincent was on Portlandia (video), will be on Gossip Girl"