Entries tagged with: Obits

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photos by Andrew St. Clair

Obits @ Knitting Factory

Obits played two hometown nights in a row at Knitting Factory in Brooklyn over the weekend. On Friday, November 12th, the packed show was with Shark? and Jawbreaker frontman Blake Schwarzenbach's band forgetters. Saturday night was with Bottomless Pit (ex-Silkworm) and Black Helicopter. Pictures from Friday are in this post, as is a full video stream of Obits' performance, captured by the Knitting Factory livestream, from that night (below in two parts).

Obits are now resting for the holidays, but will head out on a proper, albeit short, Southeastern tour in the new year with Gentleman Jesse and His Men who meanwhile have New Years Eve and New Years Day shows scheduled at the Earl in Atlanta with Gringo Star and Noot d' Noot. Gentleman Jesse and His Men played a show at Knitting Factory back on 10/22 (CMJ), and Knitting Factory taped that, and you can watch that in full below too.

Tour dates and more pictures and those videos, below...

Continue reading "Obits played 2 shows @ Knitting Factory -- Friday w/ forgetters & Shark? (pics & full video stream)"

by Bill Pearis

DOWNLOAD14 Iced Bears - Inside (MP3)
DOWNLOAD14 Iced Bears - Like a Dolphin (MP3)
DOWNLOAD14 Iced Bears - Hay Fever (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: The 1900s - Babies (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Tuung - Don't Look Down or Back (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Blank Dogs - Northern Islands (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Dead Gaze - This Big World (MP3)

14 Iced Bears
14 Iced Bears

I did a double take when I saw that UK indiepop cult heros 14 Iced Bears were playing The Rock Shop on Thursday (11/11). I didn't even know they had reformed. They're associated with the jangly C86 scene (though not actually on that famed cassette) and released singles on seminal indiepop labels Sarah and Slumberland. You can download three songs at the top of this post, all of which are on the Slumberland-released singles comp In The Beginning. A little more on the band from Slumberland:

Formed in 1985 by Rob Sekula, 14 Iced Bears ably blended shambolic pop with a psychedelic punk edge that set them apart from their C86 contemporaries. Inspired by bands like the Stooges, Velvet Underground, 13th Floor Elevators and Echo & the Bunnymen, Sekula injected the then-nascent indie-pop sound with a twisted dose of noise and experimental menace. While still owing plenty to the Byrds/Ramones influences evident in the output of labels like Creation and Pink, it was this dark 60s flavor that always set the 'Bears apart. [Slumberland]
If you can find 14 Iced Bears 1988 debut album, it's an underheard classic of the era. I also really like their fuzzed-out cover of "Summer Nights" from Grease, which was my introduction to the band. If you like Pains of Being Pure at Heart, Dream Diary and Crystal Stilts, here's some OG indiepoppers making a rare, totally unexpected appearance on American shores. The band broke up in 1992 and these are their first shows since then. Highly Recommended. The band are over, ostensibly, for Popfest New England which happens this weekend, but are making a short Northeast tour out of the visit. All 14 Iced Bears tour dates are at the bottom of this post.


The other super-exciting this weekend is the return of Chicago's The 1900s who haven't played NYC in almost two years. They play an early show at Mercury Lounge on Thursday (11/11) and then The Rock Shop on Saturday (11/13). Their new album, Return of the Century, is pretty fantastic, somewhere between Velvet Underground and Fleetwood Mac, brimming with perfectly crafted pop. Says Chicagoist:

The 1900s have many musical precursors, but it seems unfair to name check any of them since the group has obviously labored so hard to create something of their own. And in that they've succeeded. Return of the Century is surrounded by a golden warmth, coursing through every harmony and bittersweet guitar chord. The band has mastered the art of creating a genuine atmosphere, as opposed to taking musical shortcuts to convey sentimentality, and it's impossibly not to lay back and luxuriate in the sound washing over you. Previously The 1900s excelled in mirroring sounds from the past, and the sonic dressings haven't changed, but now there's a genuine and unique beating heart giving their tunes life. It's like watching the difference between four-color print and HD TV, only through gauzy pastels.
You can listen for yourself -- the whole of Return of the Century is streaming via a widget at the bottom of this post. And if you haven't already, you can download an MP3 of single "Babies" at the top of this post. And I do urge you to go see them. The 1900s are just as skilled live, and a lot of fun too.


If you don't mind paying again 'cause it's a separate show, you can stick around after The 1900s play at Mercury Lounge on Thursday (11/11) and catch folky UK act Tunng. They also play Bruar Falls on Saturday (11/13). The band have gone through some line-up changes since their last album, most notably the departure of singer Sam Genders (he of the Robert Wyatt-esque voice).

Losing their singer/songwriter could prove disastrous (see: The Concretes new LP review in P4K) but Tunng's fourth album, And Then We Saw Land, is pretty good, if a little more straight-up folk pop than their previous albums which mixed acoustics with glitchy electronics. Laptops still make appearances here and there, but the new LP is breezy pastoral stuff. You can download "Don't Look Down or Back" at the top of this post, and watch the video for single "Hustle" at the bottom. The Mercury Lounge show is the first of a short North American tour, and all dates are at the bottom of this post.

Blank Dogs
Blank Dogs

There's so much good music coming out on Captured Tracks lately much of it in single form. If you haven't heard Craft Spells' "Party Talk" or Soft Moon's "Breath the Fire," you should definitely seek them out. Don't forget about Blank Dogs, the musical alter ego of C/T major domo Mike Sniper. Blank Dogs new album, Land and Fixed, has come a long way from the murky, effects-overload of their early EPs into new sonic clarity. There's still a lot of delay and chorus effects but it no longer sounds like it was recorded in a bog. If you like the weirder side of early Mute Records (Fad Gadget seem a big influence), or the dark pop of Ohio cult legends My Dad is Dead, give BD's new album a listen. It's pretty good.

Really more of a studio thing, the Blank Dogs Live Experience has been a bit more of a mess, but Sniper has formed a new power trio version of the band and given the strength of the last few records it may be time to revisit. They play Friday night at Glasslands as part of a really good bill. Also on the bill: Mississippi's Dead Gaze (super-catchy bedroom recorded pop, check out an MP3 above); Swimsuit (new band from Fred Thomas of City Center/Saturday Looks Good to Me); and the jangly psych-pop of Minneapolis  Velvet Davenport (who also play Shea Stadium on Saturday [11/13]).

That's the main stuff this week. A few more picks, night-by-night, of things not covered above.


I'd kind of forgotten about Favourite Sons who haven't released an album since 2006's underrated Down Beside Your Beauty. But after a dormant period they're about to release it's follow-up, The Great Deal of Love, and play Union Pool tonight. (Watch a video of the title track at the bottom of this post.) Singer Ken Griffin, who sounds a little like Ian McCulloch, fronted the excellent but mostly forgotten '90s band Rollerskate Skinny (seek out 1996's Horsedrawn Wishes, it's a lost classic).

Tonight at Bruar Falls is what is likely Pursesnatchers' last show for what will likely be a while, as Doug Marvin and Annie Hart are expecting a bundle of joy any second. They're on at 8PM and it's FREE.

continued below...

Continue reading "14 Iced Bears, 1900s, Tunng, Blank Dogs, Obits, Magic Kids, Popfest New England & more in This Week in Indie "

by BBG

DOWNLOAD: Bottomless Pit - "38 Souls" (MP3)

Obits at a Pool Party (more by Chris LaPutt)

I know it's easy to get riled up about the recent impromptu Hot Snakes reunion, but the bands that spawned from that are also great. Obits have lined up a pair of NYC dates in the coming months. Tickets go on sale on Saturday, 8/21, at 10AM for a pair of Obits shows at Knitting Factory: November 12th with forgetters and Shark? & November 13th with Bottomless Pit (ex-Silkworm) and Black Helicopter.

Speaking of Forgetters, the band is preparing it's debut release, a self-titled double 7" due on September 21st. Preorder a copy and stream snippets of it at the distro site.

Bottomless Pit (ex-Silkworm) have just released their new LP, Blood Under The Bridge, via Comedy Minus One. Spanning nine tracks, the LP is the band's second full-length, and features "38 Souls" available for download above.

Full Obits and Bottomless Pit dates, Forgetters album art/tracklisting, and more below..

Continue reading "Obits dates, forgetters 7", Bottmless Pit"

by BBG

Off! (photo by Lindsey Byrnes)

Whether or not the band name Off! is a not-so-subtle reference to another band that featured the great Keith Morris and dealt destruction to the insect populi, one thing is certain, they rule. Besides the incredible vocalist for Circle Jerks/Black Flag, punk supergroup Off! also features a killer lineup including Dimitri Coats (Burning Brides), Mario Rubalcaba (Earthless/Hot Snakes/Rocket From the Crypt) and Steven McDonald (Redd Kross) and the foursome have announced their debut material to be released with Vice Records!

Off!, who you may have caught at SXSW this year, will release the accurately titled First EP via limited edition 7" inch on October 12th. Featuring art and an exclusive poster courtesy of Raymond Pettibon, aka the evil genius behind Black Flag's iconic album covers, the release is the first of four 7"s to be compiled on the First Four EPs (another Black Flag nod) due on November 23rd - a collection of 16 songs which will each feature its own Pettibon sleeve art.

As the tour dates indicate below, Off!, in addition to playing FYFFest and Riot Fest this year, has announced their involvement in Austin's Fun Fun Fun Fest (happening November 6th and 7th). For those of you counting at home, that brings the list of confirmed FFFFest bands to Woven Bones, Suicidal Tendencies, Slick Rick, Best Coast, Dirty Projectors, Cap'n Jazz, The Gories, Yelle, Snapcase, The Dwarves, High On Fire, and The Hold Steady! Stay tuned for more lineup announcements for the great Texas festival.

Meanwhile, Mario Rubalcaba was NOT part of the recent (and impromptu) Hot Snakes reunion that took place on July 29th at an Obits/Night Marchers show in San Diego, CA (the bands were on tour together).

You can view video of the three Hot Snakes songs from that set, as well as all Off! tour dates & a video from their first show in LA, below...

Continue reading "Off! signs to Vice, Fun Fun Fun Fest announces part of the lineup, Hot Snakes reunited (sort of) "

photos by Chris La Putt


Murder City Devils, Obits, JEFF the Brotherhood & Silverghost played the second of seven Pool Parties happening at the Williamsburg Waterfront this summer. Stay tuned for a full report that also encompasses the show MCD played at Maxwell's on Friday. In the meantime, check out more pictures from the Sunday show, below...

Continue reading "Murder City Devils, Obits, JEFF the Brotherhood & Silverghost @ Williamsburg Waterfront (pics) "

@ a 2009 Pool Party (more by Tim Griffin)
Pool Party

I don't know what Veoba is either. The press release explains it though...

For the past 4 years, JELLY has hosted over 200,000 people for what has become one of the most groundbreaking FREE concert series in New York. Summer Sundays in Brooklyn have become synonymous with The Pool Parties and in the series' 5th Anniversary year, Pool Parties promises not to disappoint.

This year, The Pool Parties are again on the Williamsburg Waterfront for 7 dates from July 11th--August 29th. Due to scheduling conflicts, our August 1st date will be moved to a "Block Party" in and around Brooklyn Bowl making it 8 total "FREE Pool Party Sundays".

In celebrating our 5th Year Anniversary, JELLY also would like to give a big thanks to Senator Chuck Schumer and Phillip Goldfeder from the Senator's office for all of their support ensuring JELLY'S return to the Williamsburg Waterfront. JELLY owners Alexander Kane and Sarah Hooper state that, "It has been a long hard road this year to bring this series back to Williamsburg and it 100% could not have been done without Senator Schumer's efforts. "

The Pool Parties will be co-presented by VEOBA, an online resource for artists, managers, and record labels. Based in Chicago, but with global reach, VEOBA provides the music community with select services to progress and maintain their livelihood. VEOBA launched in May 2010 as a collective made up of music industry veterans, writers, managers, artists, and cartoon characters. From co-founder Jay Parkin, "More often than not, musicians rely on others to take their careers to the next level. We're here for those who care enough to do it themselves." Sharing Jelly's values of creativity and innovation, the people at VEOBA are thrilled to be involved in this summer's production. Parkin concludes, "For the independent and the like- minded, VEOBA facilitates the next step."

JELLY as well wants to give a shout out to all of their partners this summer from the new faces to old friends. Special thanks to AllSaints and Vans. As well as Amp Energy, vitaminwater®, SESAC, ZICO Pure Premium Coconut Water, ZYNC from American Express^(SM), Spin Magazine, KEXP, and Main Drag. Along with OSA sponsors: Time Out New York, Brooklyn Brewery, and Heineken.

Now onto our official Pool Parties 5th Year Anniversary lineup! Check back soon for surprise guests we cant announce yet, the official DJ lineup for The Pool Parties 2010, and more fun things that are SURE to make the 5th Year Anniversary series one you will never forget!

The Official After-Pool Parties, presented by Sailor Jerry Spiced Rum, will be held at Brooklyn Bowl following every Sunday's Pool Party!

They didn't announce who is playing the Brooklyn Bowl block party on August 1st. One complication might be that one of the bigger bands cancelled.

The only difference between the leaked lineup and the official lineup is the addition of another "SECRET SPECIAL GUEST" and the listing of some curators. You can see the full list of confirmed free shows, below...

Continue reading "Jelly & Veoba confirm Williamsburg Waterfront 'Pool Party' lineups ('Secret Special Guests', Brooklyn Bowl afterparties)"

Obits @ Mercury Lounge - CMJ 2009 (more by Jake Forney)

I have reason to believe that Anonymous knows what they're talking about when they say that Obits will share a bill with JEFF the Brotherhood and Murder City Devils in Brooklyn on July 18th.

On July 20th, Obits kick off a west coast tour. Later in the year they head to Europe. All Obits dates below...

Continue reading "Obits playing a Pool Party? (and other tour dates) "

DOWNLOAD: Ted Leo & The Pharmacists - The Mighty Sparrow (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Ted Leo & The Pharmacists - Even Heroes Have To Die (MP3)

Ted Leo @ doing karaoke at Studio B in 2008 (more by Ryan Muir)
Ted Leo

Ted Leo and the Pharmacists did a karaoke set at Studio B in December of 2008 with Andrew WK (who did a Q&A show last night).

With their new disc, The Brutalist Bricks, out March 9th, Ted & The Pharmacists are again letting you take the mic with a Record Release Karaoke Party at Knitting Factory Brooklyn the night of its release. Tickets are on sale. ("A list of available songs will be posted at the door, as well as in advance at the new look TedLeo.com.").

The band will also be on Jimmy Fallon the night before, on March 8th. You can still apply to be on the 'band bench' (and for Silversun Pickups and Allman Brothers too).

Ted Leo has a full tour coming up with Obits and Screaming Females (who played Death by Audio last night - 2/23) opening. That includes an April 9th show at Irving Plaza with both those bands. Tickets are still on sale.

Two tracks from Ted's new album - including the bold opener, "The Mighty Sparrow" - are posted above. All Ted Leo tour dates (with openers) below...

Continue reading "Ted Leo schedules a karaoke party (tix), playing Fallon (see it), releasing album (MP3s), touring w/ Obits (dates)"

by Bill Pearis

DOWNLOAD: Harlem - Friendly Ghost (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Christmas Island - Bed Island (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: North Highlands - Sugar Lips (MP3)

Christmas Island

It's a good week in New York for lovers of no-muss-no-fuss garage rock -- there's a lot of it in town. Austin trio Harlem are playing a trio of shows, the first of which is tonight (2/10) at Mercury Lounge with Girls at Dawn. They then play Friday (2/12) with Frankie & the Outs and The Siberians at Monster Island, and then hit Union Pool on Saturday (2/13) with Jemina Pearl. The band's second album (and first for Matador), Hippies, is out in April and doesn't stray too far from the greasy lo-fi of their debut, but with a bit more, um, finesse. They haven't polished the furniture, just tidied up a bit and the songs don't substitute reverb and distortion, for songwriting chops and attitude. It's a good record.

I'm going to see them tonight Mercury Lounge, but if I had to recommend one of the three shows, Monster Island on Friday seems like the right place to see them with the best and most economical ($7) of the overall line-ups. The Siberians make the kind of garage you would've heard at Cavestomp ten years ago before the genre became cool again -- more Lyres-style organ, less scuzz. Stupid Party are molasses-thick with extra sludge.

The night starts with Blacksburg, VA's Wild Nothing whose dreamy new single, "Summer Holiday," was just released on Captured Tracks. Think a slightly less wimpy Trembling Blue Stars and you're in the general sonic ballpark. Maybe you've already heardhis cover of Kate Bush's "Cloudbusting" that made its way around the internet last year.  I'm pretty sure on record it's just one guy, so what guise Wild Nothing will take live is anybody's guess. And Frankie & the Outs have really come along as a band over the last five months and are coming into their own -- and apparently they've just wrapped up recording their debut album. Hopefully that will be out sooner than later.

Wild Nothing
Wild Nothing

Both Wild Nothing and the Outs will play Monster Island again the next night (2/13) for another great show, this time with Blank Dogs (who haven't played in a while), Sisters and Ireland's So Cow. This will be the first NYC appearance from So Cow since his assault on the U.S. last summer where he charmed nearly everyone who went to see him play.  His new album, Meaningless Friendly, is supposedly out this month though there's no mention of it on the Tic Tac Totally website. Ask him what the hell's up with that at the merch table, won't you? If you can't make it Saturday night, So Cow plays again on Sunday (2/14) at Cake Shop with Vivian Girls/Woods side project The Babies, the Nick Cave-y Preacher and the Knife (who are also playing a fashion show on Friday) and retro doowop stylings of White Blue Yellow and Clouds.  So Cow will be in here for nearly six weeks (including SXSW), playing just about everywhere in North America so do go see him if you can.

Christmas Island
Christmas Island

Monday night at Cake Shop was the kickoff show for Christmas Island Beets Beach Fossils tour which will take them down and up the East Coast over the next ten days. If you missed that show, all three play again on Saturday (2/13) at Death by Audio and then will close the tour on 2/20 at Music Hall of Williamsburg with Crystal Stilts and German Measles (tickets are still on sale for the latter). Matt Volz, who does all the The Beets' artwork, designed a great poster for the tour which you can actually buy via Captured Tracks website and at the merch table on this tour (and is given a CT release number a la Factory Records). You can see a big version of it here.

I've written plenty about Beach Fossils and The Beets before and both bands play here often, they live here, so the real draw here is San Diego's Christmas Island. Their album from last year, Blackout Summer, didn't get much attention but is well worth checking out. You can download a track from it at the top of this post. Not unlike fellow Californians Nodzzz, Christmas Island make somewhat surfy, definitely nasally/nerdy indie rock that at times reminds me of the Dead Milkmen (when Joe Jack Talcum sang).  They were good when I saw them at SXSW last year and look forward to seeing them again on Friday. All tour dates are at the bottom of this post.

North Highlands
North Highlands

Tomorrow (2/11) is the  second of Savoir Adore's three Thursdays in February residency at Cake Shop and I've got another pair of tickets to give away. Just email BVCONTESTS@HOTMAIL.COM with "Savoir Adore" in the subject and I'll pick a winner at random. Openers this week are really good. Both CYHSY/Savoir Adore side project Uninhabitable Mansions and We Are Country Mice have been written about by me before, but I'll like to highlight Brooklyn band North Highlands who make rather lovely piano-driven orch pop. Singer Brenda Malvani has one of those airy but strong voices that seems to have dictated the sound of the band, it all just goes down so well together. They're good live too. You can download title track from their Sugar Lips EP at the top of this post. In between bands this week, Pat from Pop Tarts Suck Toasted (a victim of this week's nasty "Music Blogocide 2K10") will spin tunes. Should be a great night.

A couple more. The Obits anniversary shows are at Cake Shop Friday and Saturday night. Sure to be awesome.

And finally don't forget about Diamond Nights and Cheeseburger (with guest vocalists) this Saturday (2/13) at Brooklyn Bowl. If ever there were two bands to see at a bowling alley, it's these two. The Coco66 show Diamond Nights were originally booked to play on Friday isn't happening so this may be your only chance ever to see them rock it again, as the band has been defunct for over two years. They definitely went before their time. Really looking forward to this one.

That's it for this week. Flyers and tour dates below.

Continue reading "Wild Nothing, So Cow, Obits, North Highlands, Christmas Island, Harlem, Diamond Nights & more in This Week in Indie "

by Bill Pearis


Almost 25 months to the day of their live debut, Obits return to Cake Shop on two consecutive nights: February 12 and 13. Says guitarist Sohrab Habbibion:

We've been wanting to play the Cake Shop again, but haven't since our first show there. This is our quasi two-year anniversary of that show, so we thought it'd be fun to do two shows and play a bunch of the new songs we've been tinkering with. We're working on a new record and have whittled down at least 40 songs ideas to about 20 more fully formed tracks. And of those 20-ish, we have a half dozen or more that should be ready to play.

Also, these shows are the first NY area ones we've played that are ours since our record release show in March. Everything else has been either an event like New Year's Eve or opening for Pinback or Polvo or random CMJ stuff. So we figured it was about time to headline a proper show and just have a good time with it, getting our friends to open and test out some new stuff before we head back to Europe.

Those friends opening the Feb. 12 show are Gray Goods and Rope. The Feb 13 show has Buenos Dias and Wrong Dots. Both shows are $10, no advance tickets. After the Cake Shop shows, Obits head to Europe and then return to play some U.S. dates opening for Ted Leo. All dates are at the bottom of this post.

In other Obits-related news, two members of the band have upcoming art shows. Drummer Scott Gursky (who designed the Cake Shop poster above) is part of "Vision Quest - A Group Show of Neo-Shamanic Art" which is running now through February 21 at the Observatory in Brooklyn. Meanwhile, singer Rick Froberg has a solo show at Fuse Gallery that has its opening reception the same night as the second Cake Shop show.

Sohrab also tells us, "Greg, our bass player, and I are recording a King Crimson-ish prog jam with Alexis from GvsB that I wrote for a project to celebrate the paperback release of our friend Jeff Rotter's really awesome and hilarious novel The Unknown Knowns. There's going to be a totally absurd video involving a complex underwater world and lyrics like, 'The parchment culled from lamprey gills / And with a waterproof kind of quill / The rhymes are writ in a font of yore / Unavailable at any store.'"

There's more. "The Forgery Series show I played [opening for That Petrol Emotion] was satisfying enough that I'm going to record a single. Phil Palazzolo, who's an old school NJ hardcore guy that's also worked with Okkervil River and on A.C. Newman's last record, is hopefully gonna produce it. It should be fun and, with a bit of luck, find a balance between pop melody and Kraut drone."

All Obits 2010 tour dates are below.

Continue reading "Obits working on new songs, playing two shows at Cake Shop ++ other dates, solo & art projects "

by Bill Pearis

DOWNLOAD: Obits - Two-Headed Coin (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Obits - Pine On (MP3)

So we asked a load of NYC-area bands to tell us how their 2009 went, via a handy questionnaire. As we get them back we're gonna post them.

Obits on the Jimmy Fallon show - November 2009

This one is from Brooklyn's Obits, a band that features a bunch of indie rock veterans, including frontman Rick Froberg (Hot Snakes, Drive Like Jehu), guitarist Sohrab Habibion (Edsel) and drummer Scott Gursky (Shortstack). Legend has it, a bootleg of their first gig (Cakeshop, Jan 2008) got them signed to Sub Pop, who earlier this year put out Obits debut, I Blame You -- one of my favorite straight-up rock records of 2009. Obits' next gig is New Years Eve Rock n' Soul Party at The Bell House that also features Eli "Paperboy" Reed (tickets are still on sale).

Sohrab (who you may have caught solo on Saturday when he opened for That Petrol Emotion at the Bell House) was kind enough to answer the questionnaire below... very candidly I might add...

Continue reading "an end of 2009 interview w/ Sohrab Habibion of Obits"

Bell House

"Join us at the Bell House on New Year's Eve for a legendary ROCK and SOUL blowout! Subway Soul Club's DJs will be spinning until the wee hours as well as special performances from OBITS and Eli "Paperboy" Reed. FREE cans of Sofia Blanc de Blanc champagne with admission. Food vendors! Party favors! Door prizes! Let's get it on." [Tickets are on sale]
Mercury Lounge just announced a late show with Titus Andronicus.

DOWNLOAD: The Moondogies - Changing (MP3)

photos by Jake Forney

Pissed Jeans
Pissed Jeans

Sub Pop/Hardley Art held their CMJ showcase at Mercury Lounge on Saturday night. Among those on the lineup was the Dum Dum Girls, in what was their second show that day. They since played again last night (10/17) at Bruar Falls and they'll open for the King Khan & BBQ Show this week. At that Monday show, Bill Pearis took a video of their song "Hey Sis" (posted below). After Saturday's, he wrote:

This was the first day of Dum Dum Girls existence as a live band, but clearly they spent a lot of time working out the details, from the look -- bangs, gorgeous Silvertone guitars and bass, extremely short black dresses and stockings -- to the sound, which is somewhere between the Velvet Underground and '60s girl groups. It was an impressive debut, hot and cool at the same time. I kept thinking, "this is what the Velvet Underground might sound like if all the members were Nico."

Now technically Dum Dum Girls played before Saturday, at the Woodsist / Captured Festival, and some West Coast dates, each with different line-ups. Which could happen again. But this felt like the first real version.

As Bill pointed out, it was their first "day" because they had also performed at Music Hall of Williamsburg that afternoon.

London garage punks Male Bonding, who played NYC shows all week, held down the absolute last slot of the night, while The Dutchess & the Duke (who also played earlier in the week at the BrooklynVegan loft party) warmed the crowd up for Pissed Jeans (who play "NYU Halloween Hardcore Fest" on October 30th at LPR) ...

[The Dutchess and the Duke's] Lortz and Morrison make a good musical pair, trading off guitar leads and contrasting his grainy bark with her smoother harmonies. That's apparent enough on their two albums, but onstage, their chemistry keeps their music from dissolving into Dylan pastiche. In fact, in their best moments-- particularly "Scorpio", whose downhearted call-and-response seemed especially emotionally alienated-- they made an audacious effort not simply to re-create old sounds, but to mold those influences to suit their own modern ends. [Pitchfork]
The Moondoggies were also on the Mercury Lounge bill and had performed in flannel at the BrooklynVegan Bowery Presents show at Pianos earlier that day.
Easily categorized as "Americana," The Moondoggies marry alt-country with 1970's folk, but Quick's twinkling keyboard brings the band immediately into the 21st century. [KEXP]
The Mercury lineup also included Unnatural Helpers, Obits and Golden Triangle. Pictures of all the bands plus the above-mentioned Dum Dum Girls video and more, below...

Continue reading "pics from the Sub Pop CMJ showcase @ Mercury Lounge - Obits, Pissed Jeans, Dum Dum Girls (who played Bruar Falls)"

Dum Dum Girls @ Woodsist Fest (more by Tim Griffin)
Dum Dum Girls

2009 Sub Pop / Hardly Art CMJ Showcase
Sat 10/24/2009 @ Mercury Lounge in NYC

Male Bonding 2:00
Obits 1:00
Pissed Jeans 12:00
Golden Triangle 11:00
Dutchess & the Duke 10:00
Moondoggies 9:00
Dum Dum Girls 8:00
Unnatural Helpers 7:00
No Advanced tickets. CMJ badges or $12 at the door.

Dum Dum Girls are are also opening shows for King Khan & BBQ later in the month.

DOWNLOAD: Obits - Two-Headed Coin (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Obits - Pine On (MP3)

Obits @ Brooklyn Bowl 7/31 (ameliaaah)

Obits teamed up with Polvo for the first Brooklyn Seaport Music show at Brooklyn Bowl on July 31st (it moved there due to rain). Next the group will be opening three dates on Pinback's upcoming tour. One of those will be an October 30th (mischief night) show at Irving Plaza. Tickets are still on sale.

Obits were recently visited by Vice TV's Practice Space, which came to their Gowanus lair to discuss age-ism, time traveling and to tape them playing a bunch of songs. That with all tour dates, below...

Continue reading "Obits - 3 dates w/ Pinback (NYC), MP3 & practice space video "

DOWNLOAD: Polvo - Beggar's Bowl (MP3)

Polvo @ Brooklyn Bowl - July 31, 2009 (backharlowroad)

Philly Weekly: During the time Polvo was inactive, did you ever have a sense that the band would someday get back together in some form or for some reason, or did you feel like it was permanently over?
Ash Bowie: I didn't really have a feeling about it one way or the other. We never ruled out playing together again, but I don't think any of us were counting on it. Actually, I thought it was pretty unlikely.

PW: When you talk to fans after shows, are there a couple of questions that keep popping up? What do people generally have to say or want to know when they approach you?
AB: Sometimes people tell us how far they traveled to see us play. Otherwise, just questions about what our plans are and things like that. I've just started to realize how hardcore some of our fans really are. The response so far has been amazing and kind of surreal.

On Friday, July 31st, Polvo played a Seaport Music show that ended up happening at the Brooklyn Bowl (not the only show that got moved to the venue this weekend). Obits opened the Friday show that happened around the time Jay-Z was closing out the first night of All Points West in Jersey City.

And the Polvo reunion continues. They're currently putting the finishing touches on In Prism, their first studio album since 1997's Shapes, set to come out September 8th on Merge (who are also releasing a new album by Lou Barlow soon). "Beggar's Bowl" from that Polvo album is posted above.

The band played the XX Merge festival in July, not long before the Brooklyn Bowl show. On September 24th they will play the the Bell House in Brooklyn. Tickets are on sale.

More tour dates from the band, the In Prism tracklist, with re-posted videos from Friday's show, below...

Continue reading "Polvo played Brooklyn Bowl w/ Obits, playing the Bell House (tour dates) ++ new Merge record on the way (MP3)"

Arctic Monkeys @ All Points West (more by Tim Griffin)
Arctic Monkeys

tonight in NYC
* Whiplash @ UCB Theater
* Peter, Bjorn & John @ Cake Shop
* Steely Dan: Aja @ Beacon Theatre
* Rev. Vince Anderson @ Union Pool
* Los Campesinos!, Girls @ Union Pool
* Les Paul Trio w/ Larry Coyell @ Iridium
* Laurie Anderson & Colin Stetson @ The Stone
* Noisettes, Apache Beat @ Santos Party House
* Arctic Monkeys, Modey Lemon @ Highline Ballroom
* Catfish Haven, Stranger Waves, Demander @ Pianos
* Bela Fleck, Toumani Diabate @ Central Park Summerstage
* Foreign Born, The Veils, Faces on Film @ The Bell House
* Depeche Mode, Peter, Bjorn & John @ Madison Square Garden
* Stupid Party, Songs for Moms, Bad Blood Revival @ Cake Shop
* Religious Knives, Love Tan, German Measles, Purple Mountain @ Bruar Falls
* Small Beast w/ Vera Beren, Vovete, Thomas Simon, Willie & Babe, The Dead Sextons @ The Delancy
* Precious Metal w/ Three Faces of Eve, Clinging to the Trees of a Forest Fire, Pyrrhon, Sea of Bones @ Lit

Bela Fleck and Toumani Diabate play a free outdoor show at the Central Park Summerstage.

Depeche Mode and Peter, Bjorn & John play Madison Square Garden. They return to the same venue the next night. Peter, Bjorn & John do a semi-private late show at the Cake Shop tonight.

Rev. Vince Anderson continues his Monday residency at Union Pool. Before he goes on, Los Campesinos! and Girls, who kick off their tour tomorrow at Webster Hall, play the venue.

Laurie Anderson and Colin Stetson play a special Monday show at The Stone.

Noisettes, who played the Bell House and APW, play Santos Party House tonight.

Foreign Born, The Veils and Faces on Film are at the Bell House. It's also the second of two NYC on their tour.

Arctic Monkeys go from APW to a show at the Highline Ballroom. They spent a day at the Osheaga Festival in Montreal in between.

Two weekly nights,
Small Beast and Precious Metal, take place at their respective venues, The Delancy and Lit Lounge.

Whiplash brings Jim Gaffigan, Marc Maron, Andy Blitz, Sean Patton, Kumail Nanjiani and London's Glenn Wool to the UCB Theater. The free comedy lineup at Pianos has free comedy tonight too. The lineup is John Mulaney, Anthony Jeselnik, Julian Mccullough, and Alex Castle.

Then Catfish Haven plays Pianos tonight.

Obits played Brooklyn Bowl on Friday. Video from that show below...

What else?

Continue reading "What's going on Monday?"

Brooklyn Bowl (more by Chris La Putt)
Brooklyn Bowl


For the first time in it's history, Seaport Music is ducking the rain and headed to Brooklyn, to save tonight's scheduled concert featuring Polvo with Obits. The show will be held at Brooklyn Bowl located at 61 Wythe Avenue (between N 11th and 12th Streets) in Williamsburg. Doors to the 600-person venue will open at 6 p.m., with bands scheduled to perform at 10p.m. First come, first served.

Just like Friday nights on the Pier, admission is free and on a first-come basis ONLY for the first . Keep in mind, show is 21 and over only. We apologize to our all ages fans but we are doing what we can!

Come out to Brooklyn and check out Brooklyn Bowl tonight, come for the show, stay for drinks and dinner. Show your support for your favorite series by 21 and up only Brooklyn Bowl is accessible via the L Train to the Bedford Ave. stop or the G Train to the Nassau Ave. stop.

This is the awesomest bad news ever.

In the meantime, those at All Points West (many on the BV team included) are getting soaked at the moment.

Due to rain. Obviously. :(

UPDATE: It looks like this show will be moved has moved.

by Bill Pearis

DOWNLOAD: The Veils - Killed by the Boom (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Foreign Born - Vacationing People (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Foreign Born - Early Warnings (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Jaguar Club - Sleepwalking (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Hospitality - Betty Wang (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: The Horse's Ha - The Piss Choir (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Polvo - Beggar's Bowl (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Obits - Two-Headed Coin (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Obits - Pine On (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Blacklist - Flight of the Demoiselles (MP3)

Jarvis Cocker @ MHOW in 2008 (more by Ryan Muir)
Jarvis Cocker

There is a ton of stuff going on this weekend, but clearly the gig of the week is Jarvis Cocker (who is also on Jimmy Fallon tonight) at Music Hall of Williamsburg (7/30). The last last two years Jarvis held my top spot for Show of the Year and I have no doubt he will deliver tonight as well. He's truly on another plane of existence when it comes to performers. But I'm like a lot of you this year, I didn't buy tickets for Terminal 5 (a venue I'm kind of proud I've never been to) and then kicking yourselves when the show got downgraded to MHoW. It's kind of killing me that I won't be at this show, but luckily there are a lot of other good options.

The Veils
The Veils

If you are an Anglophile, I think your best bet tonight (7/30) is at Mercury Lounge for The Veils and Foreign Born. Tickets are still available. The Veils' new album, Sun Gangs, is a little more palatable, in my opinion, than 2006's Nux Vomica with singer Finn Andrews' vocals a little more reigned-in and less histrionic, though I realize that was a selling point for some people. (I was more of a fan of the first album, The Runaway Found, than the second album.) The new record is good, for fans of moody, heart-swelling anthemic rock. Check out "Killed by the Boom" at the top of this post. Having seen The Veils play for both previous albums (and both times at Mercury Lounge) I have not doubt that Andrews (son of XTC/Shriekback's Barry Andrews) will give 110%, if only that were possible. He will also likely wear a big hat.

Foreign Born
Foreign Born

Foreign Born, meanwhile, are from L.A. but clearly were raised on classic KROQ and the influence of The Smiths, Echo & the Bunnymen, and House of Love was an undeniable presence on their 2007 debut, On the Wing Now, of which I was a fan. Their new album, Person to Person, still bears those influences but they've folded them in more delicately with their distinctly American sound so that it's more nuances than nods. (I do still hear a lot of House of Love in the guitars, though.) It's a really good album. They got a boost back in March when Ed Droste gushed about their new record on Grizzly Bear's blog:

I was pretty vocal about my love for their last album On the Wing Now, and this time around it's even better. I gotta say, something about the production of this album is really doing it for me. Crisper sounds, and Matt's voice sounds wonderful. This track "Vacationing People" is a lovely little pop gem, and it's not even scraping the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the album. I hope that you all enjoy the song and check these guys out.
You can download Foreign Born's "Vacationing People" and "Early Warnings" at the top of this post. If you are going, do try and go early and catch locals Jaguar Club who definitely fit well with the night's proceedings. Their debut, And We Wake Up Slowly, is out September 1 and is a nice distillation of various gloomy Brit-rock influences. They're young, still evolving, but worth checking out.

If you can't make Mercury Lounge tonight, both Foreign Born and the Veils are playing on Monday at The Bell House and you can get tickets here.

The Horse's Ha
Horses Ha

Another good option tonight (7/30) is at Bruar Falls which has the first Hospitality show since late May, as their bassist pulls double-duty in White Rabbits who were on tour the last two months (and play Saturday at All Points West). I previously wrote in May: "Singer Amber Papini's delicate, airy voice matches so perfectly with her songwriting: jazzy pop that kind of reminds me of '60s chanteuse Claudine Longet or Austin's Yellow Fever. I've yet to see them live but I'm kinda in love with the songs." I've listened to their swoon-worthy CDR EP I don't know how many times since then and was quickly won over when I saw them live. Check out "Betty Wang" at the top of this post and see if you don't feel the same way. They've promised to play a whole bunch of new songs tonight, too.

Also on the Bruar Falls bill are Chicago's The Horse's Ha which is reason enough to go. Primarily a duo of James Elkington of The Zincs (kind of the Windy City's American Analog Set), and Janet Beveridge Bean who has spent time in the great '90s indie rock band Eleventh Dream Day as well as '00s folkies Freakwater. The Horse's Ha are their homage to late-'60s/early '70s Euro-hippy-folk like Fairport Convention and Pentangle, and their voices sound great together on their debut album, Of the Cathmawr Yards, which, like their name, is a Dylan Thomas reference. With a backing band of ace improv-jazz players (Fred Lonberg-Holm, Nick Macri, and Charles Rumback), this should be something. You can download their song "The Piss Choir" at the top of this post.

The Mekons
The Mekons

The Horse's Ha are also playing two more shows this weekend, both of which are opening slots for The Mekons who also call Chicago home these days: Friday at The Bell House and a sold-out show at Mercury Lounge on Saturday. What do you say about the Mekons these days beyond that they are probably the only band from the original punk/post-punk era to rival The Fall on longevity, relevance, line-up changes, and essential output -- the only constant being change. The band are working on their 27th album, recording in Wales, so expect some new tunes at these two gigs: the Bell House show being semi-acoustic, the Mercury Lounge being full electric. Anyone who's seen the Mekons before should know to be prepared for a marathon, booze-soaked performance with a crowd of die-hard hard fans who match the band shot-for-shot, pint-for-pint. It can be a bit much for the uninitiated (or casual fan) but worth the effort. They are legends.


It's a great double-bill at the Seaport Music Series on Friday: Polvo are in town fresh off their appearance at XX Merge, have just re-signed to the label who will put out In Prism, the band's first album in ten years. You can check out "Beggar's Bowl" from it at the top of this post and if it represents the rest of the album, it definitely sounds like the Polvo I remember: intricate guitar lines, rhythmically complex, shredding indie rock. And Obits have put out one of my favorite rock albums of the year: full of pedal-to-the-metal, cheap trucker's speed style jams. I've seen them twice already this year, and Rick Froberg hasn't lost any snarl. Two downloadable tracks off their I Blame You album at the top of this post.

Modern EnglishA complete 180 from Obits are... Modern English. Yes that Modern English, whose classic '80s single "I Melt With You" has been used at least twice in commercials to sell various things with cheese on it over the last 10 years, will be performing at The Studio at Webster Hall on Friday CANCELLED. While that may be the only thing anyone remembers about them, the album that song came from, After the Snow, is actually a really solid platter of goth-tinged pop which, you may not remember, came out on 4AD (home of Cocteau Twins, This Mortal Coil and The Wolfgang Press). It also contains the absolutely brilliant single "Life in the Gladhouse," probably the best thing the band ever did. The two albums that surrounded it (1981's Mesh and Lace and 1984's Ricochet Days) aren't bad either. I have no idea who is in this version of the band -- certainly singer Robbie Grey, probably guitarist Matthew Shipley -- or whether they're any good, but Modern English were more than a one-hit flashback fave.


I wonder if the members of Blacklist wouldn't be watching Modern English if they weren't playing at Cameo on Friday (7/31). Surely they've got a copy of Mesh & Lace in their record collection somewhere. Blacklist's debut, Midnight of the Century, was released this week and would've sounded at home on 4AD or Beggars Banquet in 1984. They've worked out the best bits of '80s goth: killer pumping basslines, effects-drenched guitars, the just-melodramatic-enough singing, and giant anthemic choruses. If you ever liked Sisters of Mercy, The Bolshoi, Death Cult, Xmal Deutschland, you're gonna dig Blacklist. It's pastiche, but it's done to perfection. You can check out "Flight of the Demoiselles" at the top of this post.

The Cameo show also features Austin's loud-as-hell shoegazers Ringo Deathstar who are way better than their name might suggest. Might be a good way to prep your ears for the My Bloody Valentine aural assault that will happen at All Points West on Saturday (7/31).

Justin Ripley
Justin Ripley

This is a big column this week! And it's almost over. Seattle's Justin Ripley is also in town this weekend. You may remember The Pamonas, the band he had in Lawrence, KS a couple years ago. Since relocating to Seattle, he went on a songwriting binge and has released three downloadable albums this year so far. It's a lot of material, wildly ranging in styles and fidelity, but quality across the tracks is surprisingly high. Plus, he's got power pop at his core and I'm gonna guess that's what you can expect from this weekend's shows, especially with half of the awesome, raucous Rooftop Vigilantes as his backing band. He plays Glasslands on Friday (7/31, with Midnight Masses), the Alphabet Lounge on Saturday (8/1) and Monkeytown on Sunday (8/2).

And finally I would be remiss to not mention All Points West, which is at Liberty State Park this weekend as I'm sure BV readers are already aware. I think it's a better lineup overall than last year (no Jack Johnson) and Saturday and Sunday are both pretty strong, though I'd have to give a slight edge to Sunday, what with Echo & the Bunnymen, Elbow, MGMT, Slilversun Pickups, Mogwai and Lykke Li. (Also La Roux, who I'm curious as to what they're like live.) I am no fan of outdoor festivals, but I had fun last year and am looking forward to this weekend.

Tour Dates and videos after the jump....

Continue reading "The Veils, Foreign Born, Hospitality, Horse's Ha, Mekons, Polvo, Obits, Modern English, Blacklist, Jarvis, Justin Ripley, Ringo Deathstarr, APW & more in in This Week in Indie"

South Street Seaport

"It's simple really: Summer. Friday night. New York City. The first port in the new world hosting some of the best new music, as well as those established and influential artists you already know and love. All of this amidst the city's most inspiring views of tall buildings, historic ships and nighttime sky. All for FREE.

Get ready, cause summer is coming and with it another great line up on Pier 17 at the Seaport. Hard to believe we're entering our eighth season of summer shows but 2009 promises to be amongst our best.

Highlights this year include Superchunk, Polvo, Obits, The Pains of Being Pure at Heart and well, pretty much every night is a highlight to us.

Our FREE, outdoor series runs every Friday night from July 3 to August 14. The music starts at 6pm with a Guest DJ and bands go on around 7pm. Join us downtown to take in the stunning backdrop and enjoy New York's best open air venue.

Seaport Music is presented by the River to River Festival."

Updated free NYC show lineup below...

Continue reading "updated 2009 South Street Seaport Music lineup (free shows)"

a shot from Sled Island 2008 (more by Rae Holtsabum)
Sled Island 2008

The Sled Island Music and Arts Festival -- taking place at various venues in Calgary, Alberta from June 24 to June 27 -- is pleased to announce the initial line-up and the inclusion of Olympic Plaza as the main venue on Friday, June 26. This year will include over 200 bands performing at 23 venues plus art shows, film screenings, and a comedy component at the Sled Island Music and Arts Festival.

Sled Island 2009 will feature performances by the influential indie rock darlings The Breeders (featuring Kim Deal of the Pixies) making their first Calgary performance, NYC post-punk revivalists Liars bringing the noise, the legendary Canadian metal band Anvil the recent subjects of the critically acclaimed documentary Anvil: The Story of Anvil and the garage rock assault of Tel Aviv's Monotonix known for their incredible live show. New Orleans-based musician and mad genius inventor of the 'drum buddy' Quintron & Ms. Pussycat will bring the party along with blood-soaked party rocker Andrew W.K. and Toronto-based electro tour-de-force Holy Fuck on the more 'offensive' front. Phil Elverum's (of The Microphones) latest moniker Mount Eerie will deliver a symbiotic balance of fuzz and folk matched by Owen Pallett's Final Fantasy surrealist violin stage performance. Calgary-based experimental icons Azeda Booth aim to mystify crowds along with their all-male psychedelic pop counterparts Women making their second festival appearance...The complete festival line-up and schedule will be revealed on June 1. [pr]

Festival passes are on sale now.

As previously reported, Colin Newman, vocalist and guitarist for Wire, will be guest curating this year's festival. Full lineup below...

Continue reading "Sled Island - 2009 fest lineup (Breeders, Liars, Anvil & more) "

Bishop Allen @ Other Music - March 10, 2009 (Modern Mystery Blog)
Bishop Allen

Record Store Day (April 18, 2009) at Other Music...

Continue reading "Other Music's 2009 Record Store Day schedule "

by Bill Pearis

DOWNLOAD: Micachu - Lips (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: The Chap - Proper Rock (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Choir of Unbelievers - Next Summer (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Youth Group - "Start Today Tomorrow" (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: The Fumes - "Automobile" (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Deastro - Parallelogram (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Deastro - Light Powered (MP3)

Micachu @ Cake Shop (more by Tim Griffin)

Welcome to the SXSW Hangover edition of This Week in Indie. Those who went to Austin might not want to go see live music, but for everyone else it's a boon. Most of these bands have been covered before so I'm just going to go night-by-night of the shows I'd recommend...

Continue reading "Deastro, Obits, White Lies, WAVVES, Ladyhawke, Efterklang, Primal Scream & more in This Week in Indie"

DOWNLOAD: Obits - Pine On (MP3)


As previously mentioned, tickets are on sale for a March 27th Obits show at the Bell House with Lycaon Pictus, The Browns, and Rope. The show will celebrate the March 24th Sub Pop release of their new album, I Blame You.

"We're not into innovation as a band," says Froberg, who's already done his fair share of innovating with Drive Like Jehu and Hot Snakes. "I think innovation is overrated and an overestimated quality. Anything that's going to be original is going to happen without your control. Things that make your band sound like you, are things you wouldn't be able to change anyway. We just go ahead and play the stuff we like, and we don't worry about originality per se, because that takes care of itself."

Produced by Geoff Sanoff, Eli Janney and Obits, I Blame You is the band's debut full-length album.

Download track two, "Pine On" above. Full tracklist below.

Orphan is not playing the Brooklyn show, but they will play the five dates with Obits leading up to that one. Instead you can catch Orphan in NYC this Wedneday (tomorrow, 2/11) when they open for Warship and Goblin Cock at Highline Ballroom. All GC tour dates HERE. All Obits & Orphan dates below...

Continue reading "OBITS - new MP3, 2009 tour dates, some w/ ORPHAN"