Entries tagged with: Kurt Vile
Lee Ranaldo & the Dust at Maxwell's in July (more by Kenneth Bachor)
Lee Ranaldo & The Dust (whose lineup includes fellow Sonic Youth bandmate Steve Shelley on drums) are touring in support of their new album this year. That tour was supposed to hit The Bell House on October 25, but has just been moved to January 11. Tickets for the Bell House show are still available.
Meanwhile, Lee Ranaldo & the Dust will still be playing NYC on October 25, as they've been added as an opener to the previously discussed Kurt Vile show at Terminal 5. Beach Fossils are on that show too, and tickets are still available. Perhaps it's Kurt's way of returning the favor after he opened for Sonic Youth at Williamsburg Waterfront in 2011? Updated Lee Ranaldo & the Dust dates are listed below.
Speaking of, earlier today we posted about a bunch of upcoming Kim Gordon shows.
Lee Ranaldo & the Dust's new album, Last Night on Earth, comes out on October 8 via Matador. Stream the single, "Lecce, Leaving," along with the updated list of tour dates, below...
photos by Wei Shi
MGMT / Beach House / giant cat
Before My Bloody Valentine performed, screens on the sides of the stage encouraged fans to pick up complimentary pairs of earplugs. It was not an idle warning: My Bloody Valentine was the loudest band I heard perform at the main stage all weekend, though a friend insists that The Melvins were louder.LA's two-day FYF Fest wrapped up on Sunday (8/25) with one of the few US appearances of 2013 from shoegaze legends My Bloody Valentine (who unfortunately didn't allow photographers), the continuously more psychedelic MGMT, and a mix of metal (Baroness, The Melvins), hardcore (Touche Amore), dream pop (Beach House, Washed Out), garage rock (The Orwells, Mikal Cronin) and more. In this post, we've got shots of MGMT, Beach House, Baroness, and Washed Out, plus Solange, Kurt Vile, Yo La Tengo, Chelsea Wolfe (who is currently streaming her new album), and more.
Shortly after the band's eagerly awaited m b v was released this year, I recall reading that after blowing out a few amps and multiple bouts of tinnitus, My Bloody Valentine was never quite able to fully re-create the Loveless tones in concert. Most of last night's songs sounded a little different, notably "Only Shallow," but the variances in guitar tones kept things interesting. Bilinda Butcher's voice still sounds the same and Kevin Shields still creates the swirling guitar sounds by using countless effects pedals.
The band performed quite a few Loveless tracks, with "When You Sleep" being an early stand out track. m b v's "New You" followed, once again showing off the band's digital effect skills. Even though m b v was released over two decades after Loveless, the band's old and new material meshed together seamlessly. [Phoenix New Times]
Pictures of day 1 are HERE, and more of day 2, below...
by Andrew Sacher
One of the more polarizing bands, as far as indie rock fans are concerned, is the Grateful Dead. But despite all the hipsters who want to make sure no one thinks they're hippies, there's a big chunk of the indie community who actually likes this band, so it's pretty cool that The National have gathered members from a bunch of great indie bands -- Vampire Weekend, The War on Drugs, Bon Iver, The Walkmen, and Kurt Vile & the Violators -- to participate in a Grateful Dead tribute album, as Relix reports. (They announced it yesterday [8/1], aka Jerry Garcia's birthday.)
Like Dark was the Night, which The National's Dessner brothers also curated, this will benefit AIDS organization Red Hot. But unlike that one, which was a compilation, this one "will hone in on a few all-star ensembles assembled for the project as well as select featured guests." The Relix article continues:
The Dessners also cite Sonic Youth's Lee Ranaldo and Yo La Tengo's Ira Kaplan as big-name indie guitarists with an affinity for the Dead who'd fit on the album. In 2012, Aaron Dessner, The Walkmen's Walter Martin and the Devendorf brothers performed with Bob Weir at benefit show held at the Dead guitarist's TRI Studios. Vampire Weekend's Chris Tomson has also performed with Weir at TRI while The War on Drugs regularly cover "Touch of Grey." As they mention in the September issue of Relix, the Dessners riffed on "Eyes of the World" for eight hours during their first jam session with Bryan Devendorf in middle school."Both Lee Ranaldo and Ira Kaplan just helped commemorate the closing of Maxwell's.
"There are all kind of corners of the musical world that are deeply influenced by the Dead that one wouldn't expect," Bryce Dessner says. "Lee Ranaldo is a crazy Deadhead. So that was part of the idea but I think it is broader than that now. Jerry Garcia was a total cat."
Onetime Grateful Dead drummer Mickey Hart is taking his Mickey Hart Band to Port Chester's Capitol Theatre on September 21. Tickets for that show are on sale now.
Grateful Dead lyricist Robert Hunter is playing a few Northeast shows this year, including 9/26 at The Paramount (tickets), 10/5 at Capitol Theatre (tickets), and 10/10 at Town Hall (tickets). All dates are listed below.
Watch a video of members of The National performing with the Dead's Bob Weir in 2012, below...
by Bill Pearis
TOY @ BV SXSW 2013 (more by Sarah Frankie Linder)
UK motorik shoegazers TOY were supposed to play NYC back in March while the band were coming over for SXSW. The Austin shows happened (like at one of our SXSW day shows) but NYC didn't -- a personal bummer to this writer, as their debut album was one of my favorites of 2012. Good news, TOY will be stopping in NYC on their way to the Corona Capital Fest in Mexico City, playing Glasslands on October 10. Tickets to that show go on sale Friday (7/26) at 10 AM.
The Corona Capital Fest happens October 12 & 13 at Mexico City's Hermanos Rodriguez Autodrome. You can check out the line-up -- which includes Phoenix, Arctic Monkeys, QOTSA, Vampire Weekend, The xx and more -- below and tickets are on sale now.
TOY video and Corona Capital Fest flyer are below.
Kurt Vile at 4Knots 2013 (more by Amanda Hatfield)
Kurt Vile released his excellent Wakin On A Pretty Daze this past April and has pretty much been on tour in support of it ever since. He already came to NYC for a relatively intimate show at Bowery Ballroom in May, and more recently he was here for two free outdoor shows: his mesmerizing set at 4Knots and his contributions to the Big Star tribute in Central Park. Now, KV is set to return to NYC in the fall for what will be his largest headlining show here yet, Terminal 5 on October 25. (He's played the venue before, but not as a headliner.)
Support at the T5 show comes from Beach Fossils, who also play the Captured Tracks 5th Anniversary in September. Tickets for the Terminal 5 show go on sale Friday (7/12) at noon with an AmEx presale starting Wednesday (7/10) at noon.
Updated dates are listed, along with a few videos, below...
Big Star tribute @ Summersage (photo via @brunobocchese)
We didn't get the album in order, although the exact ordering of the album has always been a bit ambiguous anyway. One dissenting voice in the crowd was complaining loudly that no-one was mentioning Alex Chilton, the perfect reply came from the stage via Django Haskins (who among performing was the designated announcer) who said "everything we're doing tonight is about Alex Chilton". In essence, what could have been an event laboured with sentimentality was dealt with love, everyone (performers and audience) knew why we were there, because Chilton's songs have touched us, we got a few nice anecdotes during the evening but the songs speak for themselves.Big Star's Third: An Orchestrated Performance happened as part of Central Park Summerstage on Sunday (6/30) with Sharon Van Etten, Kurt Vile, R.E.M.'s Mike Mills, the dB's Chris Stamey, Mercury Rev's Jonathan Donahue, Mitch Easter, Pete Yorn, Ken Stringfellow, as well as only original surviving Big Star member, drummer Jody Stehpens, and more. Did you go to the show? How was it?
One highlight of the evening saw one of my favourite singers, Sharon Van Etten (who also lives in my neighbourhood, I keep hoping I'll bump into her one day!) deliver a beautiful duet with Ken Stringfellow on Dream Lover. - [Some Other Sucker's Parade]
If you're looking for more Big Star, the new documentary on the band, Big Star: Nothing Can Hurt Me, opens in NYC today (7/3) at the IFC Center. Jody Stephens will be at the 7:45 showing (tickets) for a post-screening Q&A, and will also introduce the film at the 10:10 PM screening (tickets). The filmmakers, who will also be around tonight, will participate in a post-screening Q&A at the 5:15 showing on July 4 (tickets). The film, which is also available on demand, opens Friday (7/5) in Los Angeles, with additional cities to follow. All playdates are below.
Forty years ago a mob of rock critics gathered for a convention cooked up by a promoter for the Memphis band Big Star, which played a praised set. That image of a cherished, practically mythic concert for an adoring and grateful few helps lay down the mood for "Big Star: Nothing Can Hurt Me." A well-sourced account of a perfect, broken dream, Drew DeNicola and Olivia Mori's slightly shaggy documentary captures what it's like to discover music so good it seems as if it were made just for you.You can watch a trailer for the film below.
photos by Amanda Hatfield; words by Andrew Sacher and Bill Pearis
Kurt Vile / Fat Tony / White Lung / the scene @ 4Knots 2013
"We're not a daytime band, this is weird," said Mish Way of White Lung during her band's set at the third annual 4Knots Music Festival on the South Street Seaport on Saturday (6/29). It's true that they're better fit for smaller, darker spaces, but despite that comment, White Lung continue to prove how powerful they can be on any stage. Even a hot outdoor sunny one.
Other bands sounded great under the sun too (which burned off any threats of thunderstorms), like Hunters (who already seem to know how to do a festival show), Parquet Courts, who were noisier than I'd see them before, The Men, who delivered their ever-changing brand of punk with country jams running through their whole set, the garage-soul of Reigning Sound, and of course Kurt Vile, who's arguably a better fit for an outdoor show than a dark venue. Kurt and his band (new drummer included) played an excellent set heavy on the first half of his new album, Wakin On A Pretty Daze, and revisited the past for live staples like a solo acoustic performance of "Peeping Tomboy" and the set-ending noise jam, "Freak Train."
On the second stage, which was a more of a proper setup than last year's more DIY feel, there was Heliotropes (laying down Sabbath-y riffs), Fat Tony (who rapped about Guinness beer), The Babies (terrific as always), and proggy hammer-on queen, Marnie Stern.
It was an all-around good-vibes day of free music. More pictures from 4Knots 2013 below...
by Andrew Sacher
4Knots 2012 (more by Chris La Putt)
The Seaport Music Festival might be wrapping up today with a show from Unknown Mortal Orchestra, but that doesn't mean free shows at The Seaport (Pier 17) are done for the summer. This Saturday (6/29), the outdoor venue will host the Village Voice's annual free, all ages 4Knots Music Festival. The fest kicks off early in the afternoon (1 PM) and it will be over by 8, so you'll probably be able to catch any night shows you wanted to go to on Saturday too. It's the festival's third year and this time around they may have booked their most consistently great lineup.
Kurt Vile at Bowery Ballroom in May (more by Amanda Hatfield)
The festival is being headlined by Kurt Vile, whose 2013 album, Wakin On A Pretty Daze, is one of the strongest releases of the year. The weather is looking a little iffy earlier in the day (fest is rain or shine by the way), but it looks like a good chance of sun by the time he's on, and there's not really any better way to see Kurt than outdoors on a pretty day.
The rest of the lineup is excellent too, including Memphis garage punks Reigning Sound, Brooklyn's punks-gone-country-rockers The Men, Brooklyn's Pavement-meets-Modern Lovers indie rockers Parquet Courts, Vancouver's seriously intense punk band White Lung, mathy guitar wizard Marnie Stern, YYYs-inspired Hunters, Woods/Vivian Girls-related project The Babies, rapper Fat Tony, and fuzzy indie rockers Heliotropes.
Also, since we last spoke, Steve Gunn, who is also a member of Kurt Vile's live band, was added to the lineup. His new album, Time Off, is out now, and you can stream two tracks from that release below (via FADER).
If this is your first trip to the Seaport, directions are available at Village Voice's website. It's easy to get there by subway, bus, or car, and you can also valet park your bike. Once you're there, this festival map should be of use if you need it. And, leave your coolers and beach chairs at home. There's good food down there, too, with the Smorgasbar vendors on Front St (at Fulton).
All of that fun happens for free between 1 and 8 PM, and then, if you got tickets, you can keep partying at the sold-out afterparty at Music Hall of Williamsburg with Lil B, Clams Casino, and Keyboard Kid.
Steve Gunn song streams and 4Knots flyer below...
Hunters at Bowery Ballroom in April (more by Amanda Hatfield)
This year's 4Knots Music Festival, which goes down on June 29 at at Pier 17 at South Street Seaport, is looking like its going to be one of the best free shows in NYC this summer. It runs from 1-8 PM across two stages, and during that time we'll get sets from Kurt Vile, The Men, Parquet Courts, Marnie Stern, Reigning Sound, White Lung, The Babies, Fat Tony, and Heliotropes. And now the lineup's got one more addition: local YYYs-inspired rockers Hunters. The new flyer is below. Show is all ages, and like we said, free.
As mentioned, Lil B is playing the not-free (and now sold out) 4Knots afterparty at Music Hall of Williamsburg (6/29) that night. And that lineup's been expanded now too, now including hip hop producers Clams Casino and Keyboard Kid. There are still a lot of second stage acts to be announced. Stay tuned.
White Fence and Paws are also playing a free show at the Seaport this Friday (6/14).
Flyers and some song streams below...
by Andrew Sacher
Kurt Vile at Bowery Ballroom in May (more by Amanda Hatfield)
Kurt Vile released his new album, Wakin On A Pretty Daze, this past April. It's a fantastic double album which takes the style he perfected on 2011's Smoke Ring For My Halo to new, ambitious heights without ever overdoing it or dragging. If you haven't listened, I couldn't recommend it enough.
Kurt just released a video for the third single from that album, "KV Crimes." The video was directed by WFMU host Tom Scharpling (who has also directed videos for Ben Gibbard, Nude Beach, and Aimee Mann) and features lots of people clapping, singing along, and waving KV flags as Kurt is paraded through his hometown of Philadelphia. Check it out below.
Philly has also given their hometown hero another honor as well. Matablog reports...
By mayoral decree, August 28 will officially be Kurt Vile Day in Philadelphia! On that date, Kurt will give a free solo performance in City Hall Courtyard at 5:30pm for the season finale of the City Hall Presents summer concert series. Prior to his performance, the City of Philadelphia will present Kurt with the Liberty Bell Award, the highest honor the City can bestow upon one of its citizens. This award is given only to native Philadelphians, and is presented in recognition of outstanding professional achievements and civic generosity.Way to go, Kurt.
As mentioned, Kurt Vile will be in NYC for the free 4Knots Music Festival on June 29 which takes place on Pier 17 at South Street Seaport. The rest of that lineup is also great, and includes names like The Men, Parquet Courts, Marnie Stern, Reigning Sound, White Lung, and more. Show starts at 1 PM.
The next day (6/30), Kurt will hang around NYC for the previously announced Big Star's Third tribute show on Central Park Summerstage. In addition to KV, that show will also include vocalists Sharon Van Etten, Marhsall Crenshaw, Pete Yorn, Reeve Carney, Jonathan Donahue (Mercury Rev), and Beck Stark backed by a band that includes Mike Mills (R.E.M.), Mitch Easter (Let's Active), Chris Stamey (The dB's), Ken Stringfellow (The Posies, Big Star), Charles Cleaver, and Django Haskins (The Old Ceremony). That show starts at 7 PM, is open to all ages, and is totally free.
Kurt also recently performed live on KEXP. You can watch a video of that performance, the new music video for "KV Crimes," and the list of updated Kurt Vile dates, below...
Long-running Boston dreampop band Swirlies, who seem to reactivate every couple years, have been tapped by Kurt Vile & the Violators to open on a string of dates in July. Fun fact: Rob Laasko, who plays in the Violators, is also a member of Swirlies. While those dates don't hit NYC, Swirlies will play NYC at the end of that run at Knitting Factory on July 22. Pure Sunray open and tickets are on sale now.
All Swirlies dates are listed below...
photos by Amanda Hatfield
Kurt Vile & the Violators @ Bowery Ballroom, 5/16/2013
The set was strong throughout, with certain jaw-dropping standouts. The pulsing "Shame Chamber," arguably the bounciest and most radio-friendly track on Pretty Daze, came to a gripping crescendo of piercing howls, frantic guitar soloing and tireless percussion. It was almost as though Vile was baiting the FM dial only to forcefully back away and maintain his musical independence. "Girl Called Alex," a heady, wafting song that grows increasingly more agitated and electrified as the measures race by, had the crowd applauding before it was even over.-[Williamette Week]The above review comes from the Portland, OR appearance of Kurt Vile & The Violators, who headlined a sold out Bowery Ballroom last night (5/16), joined by openers Angel Olsen and Steve Gunn. Pictures from Bowery are in this post. In other Vile news, the singer recently sat in for a full acoustic performance at XPN. Stream it in full at their site.
Last night's Bowery shows was one of many on Kurt's tour, that will swing through NYC again next month to headline the 4Knots Fest. Tonight (5/16) Kurt will be on The Late Show with David Letterman. More pictures from Bowery Ballroom are below.
LA Fest FYF Fest is celebrating 10 years this year, and will take over Los Angeles State Historic Park on August 24 & 25. Check out the massive lineup in the poster above, and in alphabetical order below...
Kurt Vile at Coachella 2013 (more by Dana (distortion) Yavin)
Kurt's tour brings him to NYC for a sold out show on May 16 at Bowery Ballroom with Angel Olsen (who plays her own show a few days later) and Steve Gunn (whose new album, Time Off, comes out on June 18 -- stream a new track from it here).
He then returns for the free 4Knots Music Fest on June 29 with The Men (who play Union Pool on Saturday [5/4]), Marnie Stern, Parquet Courts, Reigning Sound, White Lung, The Babies (who just played Glasslands), Fat Tony and Heliotropes (who also play a record release show at Glasslands).
Updated dates are listed, along with the new video, below...
Kurt Vile at Coachella, 4/14/2013 (more by Dana [distortion] Yavin)
We already knew that The Men would be playing this year's 4 Knots Music Festival, but the Village Voice have just announced a few more acts: Kurt Vile, Parquet Courts, and Marnie Stern. With two stages and seven hours for each, there are lots more bands still be be announced. Village Voice's 4Knots Music Festival goes down June 29 at South Street Seaport from 1 - 8 PM. It's free and all-ages. Flyer is below.
photos by Dana (distortion) Yavin
Wu-Tang Clan / Father John Misty / Grimes / the crowd @ Coachella, 4/14/2013
As the wind whipped through the final day of Coachella's first weekend, it became clear to those at the front of the stage that the techs getting the stage set up for the Red Hot Chili Peppers' festival-closing headlining set had a choice: take down the video screens that clearly were a part of the Peppers' production, or leave them up, risking them blowing uncontrollably around the stage. So they chose the former, leaving behind grandiose production elements in favor of solid -- but not-quite-revelatory -- musicianship.The first weekend of Coachella wrapped up last night (4/14). with sets from The Red Hot Chili Peppers, Dead Can Dance, Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds, and Staten Island hiphop legends the Wu-Tang Clan who performed much of their classic 1993 album, Enter The 36 Chambers, as well as solo hits from the different members. Earlier Sunday also saw Grimes' energetic set, noisemakers JEFF the Brotherhood and Dinosaur Jr, the mellow gold of Kurt Vile, Australian psych purveyors Tame Impala, crowd-pleasers Vampire Weekend, Gaslight Anthem, and Father John Misty. Pictures of those acts' sets are in this post.
It's a sort of metaphor for this year's edition of the festival, which never quite hit the watercooler moment. On the final day of the first weekend (the lineup repeats next week), there were no superstar surprises, no Daft Punk appearance and, during the Chili Peppers' set, not even a new song: just a major band, playing through their major hits, for a major audience.
It's been the story of this Coachella from the start, when the two-weekend blowout nearly sold out before the lineup was even announced, but on the field it became immediately obvious: This festival, at least this year, no longer was about "music fans" but about "Coachella fans" -- that is to say, the tens of thousands of revelers who packed the field had no specific allegiance to a band, a genre or an affiliation. - [Hollywood Reporter]
Other acts that played Sunday: Cloud Nothings as a three-piece, Ghost BC (who played too early for our photographer to catch), Jessie Ware (who also made an appearance during Disclosure's set) and San Francisco psych-garage kings Thee Oh Sees, who we also missed but were joined on sleigh bells by fellow Bay Area resident Ty Segall.
Kurt Vile @ T5, December 2012 (more by Gretchen Robinette)
Hot Chip @ SS Coachella (more by Greg Cristman)
today in NYC
* Yes @ Beacon Theater
* Serena Jost @ Joe's Pub
* Mika @ Le Poisson Rouge
* Slavic Soul Party @ Barbes
* Yo La Tengo @ The Kitchen
* Kurt Vile @ Apple Store SoHo
* Jon Madof's Zion 80 @ The Stone
* Nymph, Daniel Carter @ Union Pool
* Tokimonsta @ Music Hall of Williamsburg
* Jamie Lidell, Ludwig Persik @ Glasslands
* "Les Yeux," Dinowalrus, Redfoot @ Pianos
* Chris Thile and Brad Mehldau @ Bowery Ballroom
* Lianne La Havas, Jamine N Commons @ Webster Hall
* Rvivr, Dogjaw, Agatha, Tomboy @ NYU Kimmel Center
* Holly Miranda, Jon Shain, Caitlin Canty @ Rockwood Music Hall
* Crinkles, Make Good, Michael Beharie @ Brooklyn Fireproof East
* Hot Chip, Tanlines, The Crystal Ark (DJ Set) @ Roseland Ballroom
* Andrew McMahon, Kate Earl, Erland Wanberg @ Highline Ballroom
* Young Magic, Allah-Las, Reverberation (DJ Set) @ Mercury Lounge
* Slow Country, Oceanographer, Tiger Dare, Sanibel @ Cameo Gallery
* The Beets, Sea Lions, Golden Grrrls, Household, Army Men @ Silent Barn
* Las Supper (Big Daddy Kane, Show Tyme and Lifted Crew) @ Brooklyn Bowl
* The Mystery Lights, Baby Yaga, Mick Lewis and the Fine Print @ The Bowery Electric
* Bam Margera Experience, Fu*k Face Unstoppable, Hunter Moore, Shat, Buckwheat Groats, The Scandals @ The Studio at Webster Hall
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Marissa Nadler already offered an a capella version of the Game of Thrones theme, but Scotland's CHVRCHES (who sold out their upcoming Webster Hall and Music Hall of Williamsburg shows) put their spin on it recently and you can stream that below.
Young Galaxy remixed Born Ruffians' "Needle," the original of which is on their upcoming Birthmarks LP. Stream it below.
Kurt Vile at Sasquatch 2012 (more by Chris Graham & Rae Graham)
Kurt Vile, whose tour brings him to NYC for a "Meet The Musician" talk/performance at Apple Store SoHo on April 9 and a sold out Bowery Ballroom show on May 16, has put his new album, Wakin On A Pretty Daze, up for streaming a week ahead of its April 9 release date. The new album takes Kurt's effortless drawl and summer breeze guitar strums of 2011's Smoke Ring For My Halo and expands them with extended segues and guitar and solos into an 11-track, hour-plus double album, some of which near or pass the 8-minute mark. It's a great album, and you can listen to the entire thing at NPR.
All dates are listed, along with streams of the album's two singles, below...
As mentioned, Kurt Vile will release his new double album, Walking on a Pretty Daze, on April 9. His Bowery Ballroom show on May 16 is sold out, but if you'd like to see him sooner and for free, Kurt will be at the Apple Store SoHo on the album's release date as part of their "Meet The Musician" series. He'll talk with Matt Pinfield about the new record and then Kurt Vile & the Violators will perform live. Doors are at 6:30 PM and the program starts at 7 PM.
Kurt's added a few other dates as well, including Toronto's Urban Roots Festival and Louisvile's Forecastle Festival (both in July) and updated dates are below. Kurt also recently played acoustic on University of Minnesota's Radio K and a couple videos from that session are below.
DOWNLOAD: Kurt Vile - "Never Run Away" (MP3)
Kurt Vile at Summerstage in 2012 (more by Ryan Barkan)
As mentioned, Kurt Vile is releasing his new double album, Wakin On A Pretty Daze on April 9 via Matador. You've already heard the impressive 9+ minute single, "Wakin On A Pretty Day," and now he's revealed the shorter, very catchy second single, "Never Run Away," which premiered on a commercial on Philly's CW network last night (3/20). Download the track above and watch the commercial (which features Kurt's daughter) below (via Matablog).
Kurt's tour in support of the album includes a sold out NYC show on May 16 at Bowery Ballroom with Steve Gunn and Angel Olsen.
by Andrew Sacher
DOWNLOAD: Kurt Vile - "Wakin On A Pretty Day (MP3)
As mentioned, Kurt Vile is releasing his new album, Wakin on a Pretty Daze, this year and since we last spoke, more details on the release have arisen. It's a 69-minute double album and will be out on April 9 via Matador. Like 2011's Smoke Ring for My Halo, it was produced by John Agnello (who also works with Kurt's forefathers, Sonic Youth and Dinosaur Jr). You can download the 9+ minute sort-of-title track, "Wakin On A Pretty Day," at the top of this post or stream it below. It follows in the path of Kurt's cleaned-up sound that he explored on Smoke Ring for My Halo and the subsequent So Outta Reach EP, and if you liked those albums, this new track should be getting you excited for the new album. That's the cover art above and the tracklist is below. You can pre-order the album physically or digitally now.
As mentioned, Kurt will be playing a NYC show this month with Owen at NYU on February 23, and after taking about two months off, he'll head out on a full tour with his backing band, The Violators, which kicks off at Coachella and brings Kurt back to NYC on May 16 at Bowery Ballroom. That show, and many others on the tour, is with Angel Olsen (who we just caught in Chicago) and Steve Gunn. Tickets for the NYC show go on sale Friday (2/15) at noon. All dates are listed below.
Though you'll have to wait until April to get the album in your hands (or you know, on your hard drive), if you're in NYC you can hear it much sooner because BrooklynVegan is presenting a listening party this Tuesday (2/12) at Electric Lady Studios. If you'd like to go, enter via the contest details we've laid out below.
Contest details, song stream, and all dates, below...
Kurt Vile, who has a show coming up at NYU, is set to follow 2011's great Smoke Ring for My Halo this year with a new album, Wakin on a Pretty Daze. No release date has been announced yet, but Kurt just teased the album art by posting a video of him and graffiti artist Stephen Powers (aka ESPO) creating the artwork. Check out the video below...
Kurt Vile at Terminal 5 in 2012 (more by Gretchen Robinette)
Two artists on different sides of the folk spectrum will be teaming up this month for a show at NYU. The psychedelic heartland folk of Kurt Vile and the noodly emo-folk of Owen (aka Mike Kinsella) will grace the fourth floor of the university's Kimmel Center on February 23 with support from NYU band The Young Women. Admission is $5 for students and non-students alike, and tickets can be picked up at NYU Ticket Central (566 Laguardia Place), which is attached to the Kimmel Center.
The NYU show is exactly a month before Owen plays Maxwell's (3/23) (tickets), which is one of his few other upcoming dates. As for Kurt Vile, his only other announced dates at the moment are festival appearances, including Coachella and Primavera Sound.
All lists of dates and a few videos below...
J. Mascis / Frank Black
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...