Entries tagged with: Olympics
photos by Dana (distortion) Yavin
Blur/The Specials/New Order, Hyde Park 8/12/2012
Blur's frontman and driving force, Damon Albarn, had said this might be the band's final performance. But then Albarn has always been a competitive soul, and you wonder if he's just trying to outdo the culmination of the Olympics for significance.Blur headlined the official post-Closing-Ceremony concert in London's Hyde Park, a capper to the last two weeks of Olympics mania. The two-hour set had all the big singles (except "There's No Other Way"), their new song "Under the Westway," and a nice selection of deep cuts (what, no "Blue Jeans"?) that few could really grumble with. Grumbling about the sound was prevalent, however, as Hyde Park noise ordinances kept the volume a little too low for some in the back.
For a while tonight, that appears to be a losing battle. Blur are preceded by the BBC's closing ceremony coverage, shown on a giant screen. As union flags flutter, the 80,000-strong crowd bellows along to the national anthem and cheers as Prince Harry takes his seat. When Madness kick off the entertainment in the stadium, Hyde Park dances along, and you wonder whether everyone's forgotten they've paid £55 to see Blur.
Then, abruptly, Madness are cut mid-song and the screens withdraw to reveal our headliners, under a replica of Albarn's beloved Westway. The band launch into an incendiary Girls and Boys, and, for the next two hours, Hyde Park is theirs. - [The Guardian]
Of course, it wasn't just Blur, as the concert also featured sets by The Specials, New Order (who have North American shows coming up) and youngsters Bombay Bicycle Club. Photos and setlists of all the band's from Sunday night's Hyde Park concert are below.
by Bill Pearis
George Michael at the London Olympics Closing Ceremony
While Kate Bush didn't perform in the London Olympics Closing Ceremonies segment that "Running Up That Hill" was used in (that was cut from the U.S. telecast), NBC did cut a few actual live performances from it, including The Who closing out the whole thing with "Baba O'Riley," "See Me, Feel Me/Listening To You" and "My Generation." (Yet they left in Kaiser Chiefs doing "Pinball Wizard"!). The Who was not deemed as important as letting the world see the first episode of some new sitcom. NBC also cut Ray Davies doing Kinks classic "Waterloo Sunset" and Muse who wrote "Survival," the official song for the London Olympics.
What we did get: a Spice Girls reuinon where Posh, Sporty and the rest of them mostly rode around the track in separate Bentleys; Beady Eye doing "Wonderwall" (Noel must've loved that); Annie Lennox doing "Little Bird"; Eric Idle singing Life of Brian's "Always Look on the Bright Side of Life"; Russell Brand singing "Pure Imagination from Willy Wonka and "I Am the Walrus"; current popstars One Direction and Jessie J, the latter of whom also sang "We Will Rock You" with Queen; Fatboy Slim in a giant inflatable octopus; Pet Shop Boys doing "West End Girls," Madness hoarsely performing "Our House"; and Ed Sheeran with Pink Floyd's Nick Mason and Genesis' Mike Rutherford for "Wish You Were Here."
The highlight, at least with the crowd I watched it with, was George Michael in his first live performance after a life-threatening bout with pneumonia last year. He still had the moves on "Freedom 90," though it seemed a missed opportunity by the ceremonies producers not to have the iconic video's co-stars Kate Moss and Naomi Campbell come out for it, as they were paraded around in a segment set to Bowie's "Fashion" early in the program. NBC cut (maybe not so unkind) the performance of Michael's new single "White Light" which you can watch the video for below that does feature Moss.
After the Closing Ceremonies, Blur performed in Hyde Park with New Order, The Specials and Bombay Bicycle Club and we'll have pictures from that show soon.
Every once in a while, Kate Bush makes an appearance in pop culture, mythical creature that she is. Tonight was not an example of one of those appearances. She did, though, needlessly rerecord her only song to go Top 40 in the U.S., "Running Up That Hill," and give it to the Olympics so people could do weird things with their bodies, recreate some of her interpretive dancing from the video and build a literal hill along to a song that's really about gender-fucking. Also, there are montages of athletes, some of them weeping in defeat. In other words, this was a solid Kate moment, despite her predictable absence. (I believe she literally lives in a castle on a hill.)You can watch the cut Kate Bush song segment at Gawker.
Kate Bush released this song via iTunes today, but it is not available in the U.S. In turn, this performance was broadcast overseas in a much longer version of the ceremonies that were chopped up by the time they hit U.S. shores. So basically, Kate was like, "Fuck the U.S." and then the U.S. was like, "Who?" As usual.
Eternal Summers at Beekman Beer Garden in 2011 (more by Amanda Hatfield)
today in NYC
* ASSSSCAT 3000 @ UCB
* Eric Benet @ Central Park Summerstage
* Eternal Summers @ Fulton Stall Market
* Murphy's Law @ Rocks Off Concert Cruise
* Comedy Night @ The Knit w/ Hannibal Buress
* The Band Band (Levon Helm tribute) @ City Winery
* Jane's Addiction @ State Theater, New Brunswick, NJ
* Kestrels, Blackbinder, Adult Dude @ Public Assembly
* Datalog, Yalls, Some Ember, Portable Sunsets @ Glasslands
* Bird Call, Talain Rayne, Shira Goldberg @ The Mercury Lounge
* Don't Upset the Bear, Emily Peal, Beast Patrol, Wilsen @ Cake Shop
* Cowboy Indian Bear, The Noise FM, Origami Ghosts, Riverwild @ Pianos
* Dan Neustadt plays The Beatles' "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band" @ Le Poisson Rouge
Jane's Addition are on tour and working their way towards Brooklyn where they play Williamsburg Park. Meanwhile you can catch them at the State Theater in New Bunswick, NJ tonight.
Lincoln Center's free outdoor Roots of American Music Festival continues today with Swamp Dogg, Aloe Blacc , an all star gathering for Gil Scott-Heron, and more. It's also the last day of the 2012 Lincoln Center Out Of Doors season.
Eternal Summers play the free Sound Bites Series at Fulton Stall Market today at 3 PM. Check out their video for "You Kill" below.
The Olympics Closing Ceremony is tonight with musical guests The Who, Blur, New Order, The Specials, Madness, and more. It's also been speculated that Kate Bush, who hasn't played live in a very long time will make an appearance too.
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Pictureplane in Chicago in April (more by Tyler Trykowski)
today in NYC
* ASSSSCAT 3000 @ UCB
* Les Hot Club @ Barbes
* Mike Birbiglia @ Union Hall
* Jeff Walton Quintet @ The Stone
* M'lumbo, Gary Lucas @ Joe's Pub
* Bob Jones/Jon Sholle Duo @ Barbes
* Hannibal Buress @ Knitting Factory
* Hallways, Zambri @ Ace Hotel New York
* Ladysmith Black Mambazo @ City Winery
* Sunday Salon Performances @ The Stone
* Catalpa Music Festival @ Randall's Island
* Rachel Potter, The Vanity Belles @ Joe's Pub
* Joe Cocker, Huey Lewis and The News @ Jones Beach
* Ice Balloons, Triple Hex, Two Times The Gun @ Zebulon
* Calls, Midair, Fishing The Sky, Weird Teeth @ Saint Vitus
* Grimes (DJ set), Pictureplane, Arca, Rezzie @ 285 Kent Ave
* CHURCH Comedy Variety Show, Lost Boy?, Gunfight! @ Big Snow
* Quilt, Young Magic, Secret Mountains, Murals @ Mercury Lounge
* Natural Child, Birdcloud, Respect, Hector's Pets @ Union Pool
* The Mystic Underground, The Dossier, Condo Ron @ Cameo Gallery
* Lame Drivers, The Woolen Men, I'm Turning Into @ Public Assembly
* Banned Books, Circle of Buzzards, Beasty, Tank Attack @ Cake Shop
* Dan Neustadt plays The Police's "Synchronicity" @ Le Poisson Rouge
* Death First, Grudges, Dead People Screaming, Pity Party @ The Acheron
* Golden Animals, Shining Mirrors, Divining Rod, Lead Stones @ Glasslands
* Blest Mess, Dust Angel, Gas NYC, Nihilistics, Rejuvenate, Iconicide @ Tompkins Square Park
* B. Dolan, Sage Francis, Grand Buffet, What Cheer? Brigade, Mux Mool, Vockah Redu, Wheelchair Sports Camp @ The Studio at Webster Hall
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The stream of Arctic Monkeys covering "Come Together" at the Olympics Opening Ceremony that we told you about yesterday has been removed, but you can now watch a video of that and the band playing their own "I Bet You Look Good on the Dancefloor" at the Domino website. You can also download the Olympics Opening Ceremony soundtrack, which features a studio version of the "Come Together" cover, via iTunes.
Big K.R.I.T. made a video for his song, "What U Mean" (featuring Ludacris), which you can watch below.
Schoolboy Q made a video for his song, "There He Go," which you can watch below.
by Bill Pearis
Tuning up the ol' Blur piano for today's Twittercast (via @blurofficial)
Blur, who reunited in 2009 and returned earlier this year to perform at the Brits and announce some festival dates, are performing two new songs today live on a global broadcast via their Twitter page. At 6:15PM GMT (1:15PM EDT) they'll perform "Under the Westway" and at 7:15PM GMT (2:15PM EDT) they'll perform "The Puritan." How exactly one performs live on Twitter remains to be seen. The songs will be available to download on iTunes immediately after the performance and there's a 7" single as well. Here's the link for the livestream which now has an archive of the performances.
UPDATE: Listen to the two new songs.
It's going to be a big summer for Blur, who on July 30 will release Blur 21, a giant retrpective box that contains:
All seven newly expanded two-disc studio albumsThere is also a Blur Vinyl Box, containing all seven albums. Details for both sets are here.
Four discs of rarities, exclusive to this set. Includes 3½ hours of previously unreleased material
Three DVDs including over 2 hours of previously unreleased footage. Includes two pivotal live shows and an exclusive disc of video rarities.
Collectable 7" single of the rare and previously unreleased live recording of the Seymour-era track Superman.
Deluxe hard-bound book telling the story of Blur's 21 year career with extensive liner notes based on a brand new interviews with the band, illustrated with imagery of the era, including some previously unseen photos.
The band still haven't played any US reunion shows, just a few in Europe, where they will continue to play some select shows and festivals, including Way Out West, this summer. Then on August 12 the band will play Hyde Park in London as part of closing concert for the 2012 Summer Olympics, a show that also features New Order (minus Peter Hook) and The Specials (minus Jerry Dammers).
After that, the future is uncertain. Damon Albarn has said this may be it for Blur (and Gorillaz) but in a "preview" video for the Twitter performances, bassist and cheesemaker Alex James said "who knows if this is the end... or the beginning of the next chapter."
A list of all dates, cover art for "Under the Westway," plus lyric sheet flyers for both songs and that Alex James video are below.
UPDATE: You can watch "Lyric Videos" for both songs are below as well.
Blur are set to appear in an exclusive NME feature piece to talk about their future. Speculations are that they're going to make a new album with producer William Orbit.Blur are also playing Hyde Park, Way Out West, Smukkeste, and probably other European festivals this year. Stay tuned for more dates (thanks Hiro).
The news about Blur headlining the London Olympics 2012 Closing ceremony concert came on midnight yesterday, just a day before the Brit Awards at 8:00pm tonight at the O2 Arena....
...Speculations for the NME announcement tomorrow is best summed up by dannn, a forum member, who said:
My take on recent developments:
• Blur are active again and that's what we have been craving for years.
• The new song sounds really good and a studio version may not be a piano based ballad and could well be in the same vein as For Tomorrow.
• The gig is a unique opportunity for the band to be part of history. I am sure if it wasn't for the Olympics they wouldn't be going anywhere near Hyde Park.
• Expect some intimate warm up gigs.
• The intention at the Brits (and the Olympics gig) could be to put a line in the sand and celebrate the band's past, whilst looking towards the future as Blur Mark II. I think the band have the desire to continue and produce new music, but I guess we'll find out tonight / tomorrow.
We couldn't agree more - with William Orbit on board, what else can happen? Here's our best guess -
- Under the Westway is the Record Day promo
- They're back "in full" as the article says
- Playing Olympics with some intimate warm up gigs
- Then possibly an album towards December with Orbit
Last night was the Brits (the UK version of the Grammys), and though the winners weren't that exciting (Adele, Lana Del Rey, Foo Fighters, Coldplay, Ed Sheeran, Bruno Mars), Blur did perform. Videos of their performance, video of Graham & Damon Albart playing a new song two nights earlier, with the full list of Brits winners and some Graham Coxon dates, below...
photos by Benjamin Lozovsky, words by Andrew Frisicano
Devo will be performing at the Olympic medal ceremony tonight (2/22) in Whistler, BC, at 10:30pm. They aren't the only band to play the daily ceremonies - Feist and Stars and Wilco already performed and there is still a full schedule of performances through Feb. 27th (The Roots and Burton Cummings both play on February 25).
The Akron band will be putting new song "Fresh" up on its website as a free download after their performance. The site is currently hosting a "color study," which is a survey that asks you to match colors with various scenarios ("What color is this neglected step-child's hair?" is one). It's part of a larger market/faux marketing campaign by the band that's connected to their forthcoming album. They'll also be unveiling new costumes and songs at the Olympic performance.
After conferring with Warner Bros. Records and Mother LA we have decided to permit Devo to debut some new songs and a new look at their Olympics concert. We couldn't have wished for a better testing ground from such a fantastically diverse crowd.A video from Devo Inc.'s COO is below.
Shortly there after Devo will have the opportunity to adjust their set and songs driven by the Olympics crowd input so they can present a truly "kick ass" show (pardon me) as they say, at Coachella. Their desert show will also coincide with the pre-release of new, focus group approved songs from their forthcoming 12 song CD.
There's one problem however. Right now, Devo is committed to more songs than the new release allows. Word from on high is that songs must be removed from the new CD. 12 is the target number. Help DEVO Inc. and its corporate partners to determine the outcome of the album by participating in the proven system of focus-group testing at the Devolution tent. Your involvement is essential and will grant you a free Energy Dome for your efforts.
Devo played two shows at Irving Plaza on November 20th and 21st. The second night they performed Freedom of Choice in full, photographed here. The first night was Q: Are We Not Men? A: We Are Devo! , which is pictured in this post. More pictures, videos and dates are below...