Entries tagged with: Jim Ruiz

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by Bill Pearis

The Clientele
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Nice to see that indie zine chickfactor is having a third birthday party -- "chickfactor 22" -- at Brooklyn's The Bell House on March 20 & 21. Headlining the second night are The Clientele, who went on "indefinite hiatus" in 2011 (and haven't played NYC since the year before that); frontman Alasdair MacLean's more current group, Amor de Dias, which is a collaboration with Pipas' Lupe Núñez-Fernández, will play on the first night.

The 3/20 show is headlined by Withered Hand, with sets from Jim Ruiz Set (who has played all three years) and Lilys. The 3/21 show also features Versus, onetime SF Seals singer Barbara Manning and DC area indiepop group The Saturday People (who haven't played in a long time). Tickets go on sale Monday (2/3) at noon, and are $20 for each night in advance and $25 at the door. A $40 two-day pass is available too. You can buy them through Other Music in addition to online.

The Clientele line-up for the chickfactor show will be Maclean, James Hornsey on bass and Mark Keen on drums and this iteration hasn't played together since 2005. The Clientele also have a song on Merge Records' Or Thousands of Prizes 7" subscription, part of the label's 25th anniversary.

Withered Hand
withered

Withered Hand, aka Edinburgh singer-songwriter Dan Willson, has a new album, titled New Gods, out March 25 via Slumberland. The new LP features guest appearances by Black Tambourine singer (and chickfactor co-founder) Pam Berry, Eugene Kelly of The Vaselines and members of Belle & Sebastian and Frightened Rabbit.You can stream "Horshoe" and watch an album trailer below. Withered hand will be over for SXSW so look out for him there as well.

Continue reading "The Clientele, Withered Hand, Lilys, Versus, Barbara Manning & more playing "chickfactor 22" in March"

by Bill Pearis

The Jim Ruiz Set @ Chickfactor 20 (more by Dominick Mastrangelo)Jim Ruiz Set

Legendary Minneapolis resident Jim Ruiz hasn't released an album since 1998's Sniff but but that has now changed with Mount Curve Avenue, which marks the debut of his new combo The Jim Ruiz Set. Like his classic 1995 LP O Brother Where Art Thou? and Sniff, the new album, produced by The Orange Peels' Alan Clapp, owes much to '60s pop and jazz, and '80s UK acts like Everything But the Girl, The Monochrome Set and The Jazz Butcher (whose Max Eider plays a stellar solo on "Neo Acoustic Ambassador"). All of which is filtered through Ruiz's funny, romantic, world-weary lyrics. It's a charmer of an album and an extremely welcome return. You can stream the whole thing below. Welcome back, Jim!

The Jim Ruiz Set played a too-short set at Chickfactor 20 back in April at The Bell House, so hopefully with the new album we'll get him back on the East Coast for some proper shows. Until then, stream the new album below.

Continue reading "The Jim Ruiz Set released new LP (stream it)"

photos by Dominick Mastrangelo; words by Bill Pearis

The Aislers Set - April 11, 2012
Aislers Set

The second night of Chickfactor's three day 20th Anniversary may not have had the one-two punch of the previous evening's reformed Black Tambourine and Small Factory, but it did have The Aislers Set who hadn't played in NYC (or much of anywhere else) in nearly ten years. Amy Linton and Wyatt Cusik came prepared, however, with a nine-strong Aislers Set that sounded so good it made me want another album. BlearyEyed Brooklyn got some great video of their set which is watchable below.

Undercard duo Pipas were pretty charming, making good use of a iPad as backing band. Lupe Núñez-Fernandez spends more time with Amor de Dias lately, so it was nice to hear these two again as I haven't seen them perform since the first NYC Popfest back in 2007.

I was late arriving to the Bell House that night and missed unannounced openers Franklin Bruno, LD Beghtol and True Love Always' John Lindaman. I was also dismayed to find Bridget St. John and The Legendary Jim Ruiz Group had switched places on the bill. I am a huge fan of Ruiz' 1995 album O Brother Where Art Thou?, and my heart sunk a little to get to the Bell House right as he was saying "thanks and goodnight." He's making a new album as we speak so hopefully he'll make his way out of Minneapolis again soon. Until then, there are videos below.

St. John is legendary in her own right as 1971's Songs for the Gentle Man is a pastoral folk classic. She was given a long set, and though it was lovely, it was maybe just a little too gentle for me and I checked out to the other room for most of it.

Click through for lots more pictures from all the night's performers and video too.

Continue reading "Chickfactor 20 @ the Bell House (night 2 pics/video/review) -- Aislers Set, Pipas, Bridget St. John, Jim Ruiz & more"