Entries tagged with: Pet Shop Boys
by Bill Pearis
#1 LP of 2013 according to 'The Quietus'
Online UK music mag The Quietus started five years ago and quickly became (I think) one of the best sources for music writing on the web, giving a home to many former NME, Select and Q writers who are still seeking new music but are not so interested in the flavor of the month. The Quietus are not staffed by contrarians, nor sheep. To wit: the site just published its Top 100 LPs list of 2013 and topping it is Glynnaestra, the third album from UK duo Grumbling Fur which came out via Thrill Jockey back in August. From The Quietus' write-up:
Grumbling Fur make me want to take drugs. And I don't mean drugs like a few puffs on a spliff before bedtime or on a lazy Saturday afternoon, or a cheeky dabble at a rave to keep the energy flowing - I mean proper, don't-eat-for-18-hours-beforehand, make-sure-you've-got-a-couple-of-good-people-around-you, psychically prepared voyaging, preferably on a warm and sunny but slightly overcast afternoon in a field somewhere in the West Country, or in a friend's house cluttered to the rafters with fascinating and peculiar objects.The Quietus' Top 10 also includes some records you might have heard (David Bowie, Nick Cave, Foals, Factory Floor) but probably some others you haven't. And if you haven't heard Glynnaestra (I hadn't) you can stream it in full below.
You can check out The Quietus' entire Best LPs of 2013 list in this post, and they also made a Spotify playlist to accompany it. Their list, along with the Grumbling Fur album stream, is below..
by Bill Pearis
Bill Calahan's album Dream River has topped MOJO magazine's Best Albums of 2013 list which is in the new year-end issue. Seems about right for a magazine that had both Paul McCartney on the cover of one issue this year and The Beatles on another (also the Stones, Dylan, Pink Floyd, Johnny Marr). Their #2 was a bit of a surprise, at least to me. The Arcade Fire's Reflektor only came in at #18 but they can just be happy with being the issue's cover stars. Check out that cover -- and the entire Top 50 list - below...
photos by Dana (distortion) Yavin
Blur / Pet Shop Boys
Berlin's aptly named Berlin Festival went down over the weekend (9/6-7). The first day included sets from Blur, Pet Shop Boys, Mike Patton's experimental alt-metal band Tomahawk, Omar Rodriguez-Lopez's new band Bosnian Rainbows, The Sounds, Capital Cities, Big Black Delta, and more. Pictures of those bands and more, plus Blur and Pet Shop Boys' setlists, are in this post.
Day 2 pictures coming soon. More day 1 pictures below...
The big festival season may be coming to a close now that Labor Day is behind us and it doesn't really feel like summer anymore, but of course that doesn't mean there aren't any to still look forward to (though many are in warmer places than here in the Northeast).
One festival that will take an airplane ticket and a passport to get to from the US, but has a lineup that might make it worth it, is the Berlin Festival in -- you guessed it -- Berlin. It goes down this weekend from September 6-7 and includes Blur, Bjork, Pet Shop Boys, My Bloody Valentine, Klaxons, Savages, Justice (DJ), John Talabot (live), and more. Tickets for the festival are on sale now. Full schedule here.
In October, Austin gets the previously discussed Austin City Limits Festival for two weekends (10/4-6 & 10/11-13) with Depeche Mode, The Cure, Atoms for Peace, Phoenix, Wilco, Vampire Weekend, The National, passion Pit, Queens of The Stone Age, Arctic Monkeys, Kendrick Lamar, Franz Ferdinand and more. Weekend passes for weekend 2 and VIP options for both weekends are still available. Check out the schedule here. If you'll be in Austin for the festival, don't forget to catch some of the official late shows too.
Later on in the year, Austin gets the previously discussed Fun Fun Fun Fest (Nov. 8-10) which includes Descendents, Quicksand, Television, Deerhunter, MGMT, M.I.A., Snoop Dogg, Cut Copy, The Walkmen, Kurt Vile, Body Count, Cloud Nothings, Title FIght, White Lung and more. Tickets are still available. Check out the full lineup.
Around that same time, New Orleans hosts the previously mentioned Voodoo Experience festival (11/1-3) with Pearl Jam, Nine Inch Nails, The Cure, The Gaslight Anthem, Desaparecidos, Cults, Rudimental and more. Tickets are still available. Check out the full schedule.
Though it's not quite a "festival," NYC will be bombarded by a whole slew of bands this fall when a big portion of the music industry heads our way for the 2013 CMJ Music Marathon, which runs from October 15-19. Confirmed artists include The Dismemberment Plan, Pelican, Jacco Gardner, Good Riddance, Godflesh, Eagulls, Courtney Barnett, The Long Winters, Savages, Yamantaka // Sonic Titan, Eleanor Friedberger, Kevin Drew, Obits, Fuck Buttons, Quadron, Speedy Ortiz, Lawrence Rothman and more. Badges are on sale now.
Right before CMJ, NYC will be getting the 2013 CBGB Music & Film Festival which goes from October 9 to 13 across various venues and includes Andy Shernoff, Arto Lindsay, Bass Drum of Death, Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr., Ginger Baker, Hanni El Khatib, Meat Puppets, Obits, The Spits, Tommy Ramone, and more. Badges are still available.
And right as CMJ is ending in NYC, San Francisco will be getting its two-day Treasure Island Music Festival (10/19-20). That festival includes Atoms for Peace, Beck, Animal Collective, James Blake, Japandroids, Disclosure, Tricky, Little Dragon, and more. Tickets are still available. Check out the full schedule.
Pet Shop Boys will release their 12th studio album, Electric, on July 15. The album comes less than a year from 2012's Elysium and will be their first since leaving Parlophone to start their own label, x2. The album was produced by Les Rhythms Digitales' Stuart Price who co-wrote Madonna's "Hung Up," wrote music for the 2012 London Olympics opening ceremony, and has worked with New Order, Scissor Sisters and others. You can check out the video for "Axis" from Electric below.
Neil Tennant and Chris Lowe will be going on tour to support the new album as well, and will play two nights in NYC at Beacon Theatre on September 16 & 17. Tickets go on VIP presale on Wednesday (5/1) at 10 AM (password is "PSB2013") with the regular on-sale happening Friday (5/3) at 10 AM. All tour dates are listed, along with the new video, below.
Niki and the Dove @ MHOW, 9/27/2012 (More by Amanda Hatfield)
Niki & the Dove were last in North America in October for a few shows with fellow Swedes Miike Snow but will be back early next year for a headlining tour, including Bowery Ballroom on January 12. Tickets to that show go on sale Friday (11/16) at noon with an AmEx presale starting Wednesday (11/14) at noon. All tour dates are listed below.
In addition to their debut album, Instinct, which came out via Sub Pop in August, Niki and the Dove keep busy doing remix work as well. Most recently they remixed the Pet Shop Boys single "Winner" which you can stream 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.
photos by Ryan Muir
"The set is a wall of white boxes with Chris Lowe's sound stage on stage left. The last time I saw the Boys was at the Tabernacle in Atlanta in 2006. Hammerstein is bigger and grander, and perfectly suited for this show. Frontman Neil Tennant and Chris finally emerge from two towers of boxes to "Heart." If the PSBs are good at anything, it's sticking to a concept! They entered wearing boxes on their head, as were their back-up singers and dancers. They quickly moved into their new material with "Did You See Me Coming," and "Pandemonium," and an oldie but goodie, "Left to My Own Devices." Once "Building a Wall" got going, the stacks of boxes collapsed and stage hands in white reconfigured the boxes into a different set, a trend that occurred throughout the show. How cost efficient, simple and so visually effective? Pet Smart Boys." [CenterOrch]Pet Shop Boys kicked off their U.S. tour with their first of two shows at Hammerstein Ballroom in NYC last night (9/1). They do it again at the same venue tonight. More pictures and the setlist from Tuesday, below...
Franz Ferdinand @ the Virgin Fest in Canada - Aug 29, 2009 (Chromewaves)
"Somehow, in its fourth year on Hogtown soil, the Virgin Festival has pulled off the impossible: Amalgamating endlessly changing variables into a cohesive, enjoyable affair. It pleases with just the right ratio of talent to timing and music to distractions. Packed with everything from singer-songwriters and hip-hop to indie gods and blues freaks, the 2009 edition of Virgin Festival was an endless onslaught of sensory overload. Yet despite a stream of diversions such as Thai massage, autograph tents and burlesque pole dancing, music was still the focus.Pet Shop Boys are now on a tour of North America that includes two NYC shows at Hammerstein Ballroom this week (Tuesday and Wednesday). Tickets for both shows are still on sale. All dates are below.
Starting off modestly, the first day was a slow burner. Not until early-evening did the ample audience show enthusiasm as Scottish outfit Franz Ferdinand revved 'em up. Garnering the most praise, no doubt due to their influencing virtually every other band on the bill, The Pixies nailed a set full of favourites...
...it was the double finale of 25-year-old electronic duo Pet Shop Boys and sinister cult hero(es) Nine Inch Nails that ensured the festival was a raucous success. With PSB boasting the only full-fledged multimedia extravaganza via video, lights, iconic '80s imagery and, er, shoulder pads, their spirited commingling of past and present was as engaging as it was fun.
As for Nine Inch Nails' reportedly final Canadian show, it was a shocking shot of stellar rage delivered with professionalism and gusto, especially when main man Trent Reznor started smashing instruments a mere three songs into the set. While Reznor shows no signs of slowing down, it was still sad to think that such a spotless gig could be the last time we catch him." [Metro Toronto]
For Nine Inch Nails, the Virgin Fest was the seventh, and only Canadian, stop on this final leg of their "Wave Goodbye" tour. Peter Murphy did not join the band in Canada, but he was at both Chicago shows at Aragon Ballroom the two nights prior. After a night off, NIN will play their first LA show at the Hollywood Palladium on 9/2. The setlist for the first Chicago show is HERE. The setlists for Chicago Night Two and Virgin, are below...
Live Nation santas outside Irving Plaza - 7/14/2009 (Jason DeCrow/AP Images)
Live Nation has been dealing with the recession, or at least their recession, by putting tickets on sale like crazy this summer. They've been continuing week after week with their No Service Fee Wednesdays (for lawn tickets at amphitheater shows). This past Tuesday they sent multiple Santa Clauses to give out tickets outside Irving Plaza here in NYC. And there are $5.00 ticket promotions running for both Citi Cardmember holders and Subway sub eaters (code = Subway$5tix). NYC show tickets you can get for $5.00 include Pinback, Bob Mould, Son Volt, Alice in Chains AND STRYPER, Suffocation (playing with Necrophagist on Sunday), Marduk, Obituary, Vader and KMFDM, Brian Wilson in Westbury, and Motorhead, Psychedelic Furs, Happy Mondays, and Islands. Supposedly Pet Shop Boys are $5.00 too, but I can't get that to work.
Alt-rock kingpins the Pixies will make their live return to the U.S. this fall!In the meantime there are plenty of side projects to keep us busy including two NYC-area Grand Duchy shows this week, one of which will take place in Coney Island at 5:00pm on Saturday (7/18).
Frontman Frank Black tells SPIN.com that the Boston-born quartet will celebrate the 20th anniversary of their groundbreaking release, Doolittle, by playing the album in its entirety in Oakland, Los Angeles, Seattle, Denver, Chicago, Boston, Washington DC, New York City, and "maybe Montreal" this fall.
"I believe we're doing the Wang Center in Boston," he says of his hometown gig at the 3,600-capacity venue.
Exact dates have yet to be confirmed. The U.S. tour is expected to follow a run of Doolittle shows in Europe scheduled for October.
The gigs will coincide with the release of the Pixies' ambitious Minotaur box set, which will arrive in October on 4AD Records (order yours now via Artist in Residence).
It was also just announced that the Pixies will play the Ontario Virgin Festival on August 29th. The full lineup of that two day festival also includes Grizzly Bear, Sloan, The Rural Alberta Advantage, Pet Shop Boys, Plants and Animals, and one of Nine Inch Nails' final performances. All European Pixes dates below...
Pet Shop Boys will tour North America at the end of August into September. Those shows include two night at NYC's Hammerstein Ballroom on September 1st and 2nd. Presale tickets for the tour are available now.
The tour is in support of the band's latest album, Yes, which came out in the US April 21st on Astralwerks. The videos for the record's first two singles, "Love Etc." and "Did You See Me Coing," are posted below.
Earlier this year, the band received an Outstanding Contribution to Music award at the Brits. At the show they performed a medley of their songs, with guest spots by Lady Gaga and Brandon Flowers.
A video of that performance, with the above-mentioned vids and all tour dates, below...
Bob Mould two nights ago @ Joe's Pub (more by Jacob Blickenstaff)
Last night (4/9), while some were enjoying (or not enjoying) a Passover Seder, others caught Bob Mould at his second of two shows at Joe's Pub. Anonymous wrote,
Unfortunately it was not an ideal venue tonight.We have a review and pictures from the first night, HERE. Tonight (4/10), Bob switches it up a little and plays DJ (and maybe performs live?) at Highline Ballroom for his popular gay dance night Blowoff. (Tickets are on sale.)
It could have been, but the atmosphere just wasn't the way most BM solo shows usually are.
Still not bad, and the audience was with him, but people were eating dinner....that's an ideal venue for Bob Mould?? I don't think so.
Paper Magazine held their "Beautiful People Party" at Hiro Ballroom last night. Past musical guests at the annual get together have included Antony and Joanna Newsom (whose music is now featured in a bra commercial). This year it was Paper cover-girl Katy Perry who was already in town playing multiple nights at Irving Plaza and humping bananas.
Speaking of humping bananas, Chris Cornell played two shows at Webster Hall this week. In the YouTube video below you can see that he.... shaved his guitar player's head on stage while they were playing at one of them.
Also featured in Paper's new "Beautiful People" issue is comedian Aziz Ansari who co-stars with Amy Poehler in the TV show Parks and Recreation which premiered last night. Did you catch it? What did you think?
New Ditmas Park/Flatbush venue Sycamore hosted its third-ever live show last night. Check out the schedule for what they have coming up.
The Books paid a somewhat rare visit to NYC. The band, noted one showgoer, "debuted some sweet new tunes." Those'd be from the group's forthcoming record, which, according to the Columbia Spectator, is due next year. The Spectator also noted the lack of promotion for the show - which according to the Books' Twitter sold out less than a day before it happened. One student, on the minimal on-campus promotion, said, "I had no way of knowing they were playing at Columbia...I found out about the concert on a random music blog that I was casually browsing -- I don't even remember which site it was."
As NYC's summer concert lineup comes together, two shows were added to calendar yesterday - Casiokids at South Street Seaport and Shilpa Ray at Castle Clinton (as part of a Sly Stone tribute concert). Shilpa played Death by Audio last night. Look for more summer-show announcements today (in addition to Simian Mobile Disco at the Williamsburg Waterfront).
UK band Pet Shop Boys almost became Rescue Shelter Boys.
What did you do last night?
Paul Weller and Adele @ the Brits
Success in the Brits - 18th Feb 2009That message was posted in the news section of Paul Weller's official website. Other 2009 Brit Award winners were Duffy, Kings of Leon, Katy Perry, Iron Maiden (for best live act), Elbow, Florence and the Machine, Kanye West, and Girls Aloud. Pet Shop Boys were also honored at the event.
As you probably know by now, PW was successful in tonight's Brit Awards winning Best Male Solo Artist. OK so he wasn't there to collect it in person but we did get a video with Adele passing the award over.
What can you say? Well deserved for a top year.
Well done feller.
As previously announced, PW will be visiting the United States to play Coachella on April 19th. Add to that trip a pre-Coachella San Francisco show, and an April 24th show at Nokia Theatre in NYC. Tickets for the latter go on sale Friday at noon. All known dates below...