Entries tagged with: Red Mass
February will see the release of Pagan Day, the debut album from PyPy, a Montreal underground supergroup of sorts with Choyce of Red Mass/CPC Gangbangs and Annie-Claude of Duchess Says, plus other members of both those bands. The album veers like a drunk driver from wild, speed-fueled acid rock to ESG style grooves -- and it's pretty unlike either of PyPy's parent bands. You can stream three tracks from Pagan Day below.
I caught PyPy at M for Montreal 2012 and wrote this:
The band formed when Duchess Says and Red Mass shared rehearsal space and some of each decided to jam, the band features both wild-eyed redhead Annie-Claude and Red Mass' Choyce on vocals/guitar, neither of whom shy from the spotlight. No surprise, Annie-Claude dominated the proceedings but here she's in relatively restrained mode, meaning she's still going crazy but not totally in-your-face...a blast to watchPyPy will be touring in February, mostly in Canada, but they'll be in NYC on February 28 at Cake Shop. Perhaps they'll add another show while here?
Dates and streams are below...
by Bill Pearis
PyPy at Club Lambi, 11/16/2012
Freedom...horrible freedom! One thing M for Montreal, part festival part industry conference, was previously known for was its tightly-controlled schedule. There was one show a night with two stages and attendees saw all the bands, no overlap. And while this was still the case for the first two nights of the 2012 edition, Friday and Saturday saw the launch of the M Fest which had shows at about ten different venues each night. So for the first time in the five years I've attended this fest I had to make up my own mind about what to see.
Cousins at Club Lambi, 11/16/2012
I was going to start the night at Sala Rossa with D'Eon but when I got to the club the schedule had been pushed an hour due to Sun Airway canceling their appearance later in the line-up. So, I headed down Saint Laurent to Club Lambi, a place that felt more like a nightclub than a rock venue, complete with "mandatory coatcheck." First band was Halifax, NS duo Cousins who make garage-y pop with an emphasis on the latter. A little rough around the edges but enthusiastic and they've got some good songs. You can stream their album, The Palm at the End of the Mind, below.
Yardlets at Club Lambi, 11/16/2012
Next up were Yardlets which features vocalists/guitarists Sam Goldberg (who spent time in Broken Social Scene) and Montreal scene vet Jeff Edwards. Backlit with strips of blinding light, Yardlets tore out of the gate and never looked back, playing balls-to-the-wall rock n' roll that could be the soundtrack for a trucker's pill-fueled 72nd hour of being awake. ("Ace of Spades" being played on warped vinyl is a good reference point.) DFA 1979's Sebastian Grangier plays drums on the record (em>Middle Ages is streamable below) but not live, but his replacement seemed just as pummeling. The aural equivalent to a shot of tequila and just what I needed to jump-start the night.
PyPy at Club Lambi, 11/16/2012
Though, honestly, if Yardlets hadn't played, certainly PyPy would've had the same effect. The band formed when Duchess Says and Red Mass shared rehearsal space and some of each decided to jam, the band features both wild-eyed redhead Annie-Claude and Red Mass' Choyce on vocals/guitar, neither of whom shy from the spotlight. No surprise Annie-Claude dominated the proceedings but here she's in relatively restrained mode, meaning she's still going crazy but not totally in-your-face. She even played guitar on one song. Musically, PyPy (yes, pronounced peepee) are almost '60s style acid rock, a lot of soloing and riffs, not so much memorable tunes. But a blast to watch.
USA Out of Vietnam at L'Esco, 11/16/2012
From here we cabbed it over to L'Esco for some heavier sounds via MTL hardcore act Dig it Up and the more mathy USA Out of Vietnam and bearded frontman Jonathan Cummins (formerly of Doughboys and Bionic) greeted the crowd thusly: "Hi we're Grimes. We've changed our sound a little and we hope you like our new direction." Their music is not my thing, but I like their attitude.
Pat Jordache, somewhere in Montreal, 11/16/2012
From here we headed to an afterparty at some DIY space I don't know the name of to catch a very late night (3:30 AM) set from Pat Jordache who played almost exclusively new material. While the PA wasn't doing the band a whole lot of favors, you could still get a feel for Pat's new musical direction, rhythm-heavy post-punk with watery bass and saxaphone that tipped its had toward Eno-era Talking Heads (or The Higsons or Pigbag). I was struggling to keep my eyes open at that point but the new material is very promising (and I liked 2011's Future Songs too). While the album won't be out till next year, Pat just dropped "steps (DAMAGED GOODS)" as an appepitizer and it is very tasty indeed. You can stream it below.
Yan Wagner at Cafe Campus, 11/16/2012
Next up that night... sleep. But earlier I did check out some bands at Cafe Campus during the day, the highlight of which was Parisian electronic artist Yan Wagner (who also played CMJ this year). While his mike-and-samplers setup didn't make for the most exciting live show, his style of electropop falls squarely between Depeche Mode and OMD which pretty much guarantees I'll like. And I did.
After that we were treated to a "headphone concert" by Kid Koala at Le SAT which was a very fun, relaxing way to ease into the evening and you can read about here. You can also read accounts of M for Montreal Day 1 here and Day 2 here. Streams are below.
photos by Chris La Putt
Red Mass @ CMJ 2010
M For Montreal, the annual mini Montreal music festival that invites "delegates" from all over the world to come experience Montreal music for a few days is kicking off today, 11/17. And like in 2008 and 2009, Bill Pearis will be up there reporting back.
Some of the artists he'll be seeing in Canada this week, like PS I Love You, AIDS Wolf and Braids, were just in NYC for CMJ. Some weren't, like Gene Simmons (no, not an ironically named band, but that's what I assumed at first) (like he would let that band exist).
The 'M For Montreal' CMJ showcase this year took place at Arlene's Grocery in NYC on Thursday, October 21st. That lineup consisted of Braids, The Luyas (whose only other show was one of our day parties), Uncle Bad Touch, PS I Love You, Random Recipe, Red Mass (who Bill first caught at M For Montreal in 2009), The Pack AD, and Radio Radio. Chris stopped by for the last three bands. His pictures, and a poster for the actual fest in Canada, below...
by Bill Pearis
DOWNLOAD: PS I Love You - Facelove (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: PS I Love You - 2012 (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Suuns - Arena (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Suuns - Up Past the Nursery (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: The High Dials - Chinese Boxes (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Elephant Stone - I am Blind (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: No Joy - Headless (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Parallels - Find the Fire (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Hot Panda - Mindlessnesslessness (MP3)
There's never any shortage of Canadians at CMJ but this year... there seems like more than usual. So lets get to it.
On Thursday (10/21) The M for Montreal folks are back for a second year at Arlene's Grocery with eight diverse bands (not all from MTL) they deem worthy of seeing. The band with the most buzz coming into CMJ is probably Kingston, Ontario PS I Love You who play at 9PM. For a duo, these guys have a pretty giant sound, and their debut LP, Meet Me at Muster Station, recently got a 8.1 on Pitchfork. You can download two tracks from it at the top of this post. PS I Love You are playing five shows this week ( 20th - 23rd) and all dates are at the bottom of this post.
Capping the evening at 1AM are Acadian hip hop group Radio Radio whose album Belmundo Regal was up for this year's prestigious Polaris Prize. (They lost to Karkwa.) You can listen to the whole record via a widget at the bottom of this post. They are, I'm pretty sure, the only act to rap in the Chiac dialect, which is kind of the French Canadian equivalent of Spanglish. I saw them two years ago in Montreal and they were super fun -- even though I had no idea what they were saying. If you have no Last Show tonight, definitely head over to Arlene's Grocery. It's their only CMJ show.
Also playing the M for Montreal show: our good friends The Luyas who will also play our free day party on Friday (their only other show); Red Mass who bring a touch of theatrics to their Damned-esque garage punk; the low fi garagey folk of Uncle Bad Touch (who get the JEFF the Brotherhood Seal of Approval); Vancouver duo The Pack A.D.; and laid back folk-soul-hiphop group Random Recipe (check out their LP widget at the bottom of this post).
If you show up at 6PM you'll be treated to a little pre show action: dream pop outfit Braids and free poutine, the official drunk food of Montreal (though not vegan). Set times for the whole night are at the bottom of this post. Braids play six times this week and all of their shows are listed at the bottom as well.
The biggest bummer about this show is it happens at the same time as the official BrooklynVegan Showcase at Music Hall of Williamsburg. But you can get a taste of Montreal at our show as Suuns are playing at 8:45 PM. You can download two Suuns tracks at the top of this post. If you dig shoegaze, Krautrock, or Clinic, you don't wanna miss this band. I caught them at Mercury Lounge over the summer and was impressed. If you can't make our show but still wanna see Suuns, they also play later Thursday (11:45 PM) at Pianos as part of the Secretly Canadian showcase. Those are their only two shows during CMJ week.
There are more Montreal bands here this week too. One of my favorites, The High Dials, play on Saturday (10/23) at the 269 Bar at 11PM. Their new album, Anthems for Doomed Youth, is another great offering of jangly psychedlia, shoegazy guitars and sunny harmonies. You can download "Chinese Boxes" from it at the top of this post.
You may remember that The High Dials used to have a sitar player who left after the band's first album. That guy, Rishi Dhir, now has his own group, Elephant Stone, whose album The Seven Seas, was up for the 2009 Polaris Prize. Elephant Stone play the Trash Bar on Thursday (10/21, 10PM). If you can't see them then, Elephant Stone will be back in NYC in November.
More Montreal action: No Joy, who split their time between L.A. and MTL and will have your eardrums bleeding from their awesome, sludgy shoegaze. They play seven CMJ week shows, including the BV day party on Saturday (10/23) at Public Assembly. (Official announcement soon.) After CMJ, No Joy head out with Vivian Girls offshoot La Sera (who plays a bunch her own CMJ shows) -- all dates are at the bottom of this post.
Folk band The Barr Brothers play two shows tonight tonight (10/19): Cameo Gallery at 7:30PM and then The Rock Shop at 11PM. They also play tomorrow (10/20, 7PM) at Rockwood Music Hall.
Time, space and sanity doesn't permit me to go through every single Canadian act here for CMJ, but here's a few more of note:
Much-buzzed, glammy, glitzy Diamond Rings plays six CMJ week shows, starting with tomorrow night's (10/20) killer Stereogum/Popgun party at Santos, that also includes Wild Nothing, Tamaryn, Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr., now-revealed headliner The Drums, and more. (Only $5 with RSVP.) All Diamond Rings CMJ dates, including an Underground Press/Distiller day party at Knitting Factory on Thursday, are at the bottom of this post.
Toronto synth-disco duo Parallels play two shows on Wednesday (10/20): Backstage (formerly the Annex) at 1opm and then 11:45PM at The Bell House (that's gonna be cutting it close). Check out their track "Find the Fire" at the top of this post.
Edmonton, Alberta's cute, frenetic indiepop foursome Hot Panda play two shows on Wednesday (10/20): a day show at Fontanas (2:40PM) and then that night at the Trash Bar (11PM). Check out "Mindlessnesslessness" from the band's new album, How Come I'm Dead? at the top of this post.
Two Hours Traffic hail from Prince Edward Island and traffik (sorry) in Weezer-ish power pop. They play the R Bar on Saturday (10/23) at 9PM.
And Woodhands, from Toronto, will bring their somewhat nerdy, definitely catchy snyth rock to The Bell House for a midnight set.
Tour dates, some flyers, videos, album widgets and other stuff are below.
Hunx & His Punx shows the crowd what hes made of (more by Jake Forney)
Hunx and His Punx will bring their zebra-stripe undergarments and trouser snake to NYC on Saturday (10/16), where they'll team up with The Babies + K Holes for night of sexy at Cake Shop. The east coast date is their only live date.
Hunx & His Punx's last show on 10/10 was billed as their "last California show of the year" and featured BBQ (Mark Sultan) on the bill. This time Hunx will go head-to-head with the one-man-band who will bless Mercury Lounge that same night with Two Tears (tickets). The Mercury Lounge show is an early one though (show at 8:30), so with some luck you should be able to catch both BBQ and Hunx & His Punx (doors at 8, and three bands). Cake Shop is right around the corner from Mercury Lounge. More BBQ dates HERE and below.
If you do opt for the double-header on Saturday you will most likely miss all of BBQ's ex-partner-in-crime (literally?) King Khan, as King Khan & the Shrines will be playing Bell House with Live Fast Die that same night (tickets). So if you need your dose of turbans and zebra-prints, then at least you can catch King Khan at Santos the night before (Friday, 10/15) (tickets) with Gentleman Jesse & His Men and Golden Triangle. All dates below.
Golden Triangle will be busy in the coming couple of weeks as well, playing two CMJ shows in addition to their previously discussed support appearance with Crocodiles at Maxwell's on 10/29 (tickets). Look for the band to play the Hardly Art show at Shea Stadium on 10/21 with Woven Bones, Circle Pit, La Sera (aka Katy Goodman of Vivian Girls & All Saints Day), and Xray Eyeballs in addition to a 10/22 show at Live With Animals with Human Eye, Greg Ashley Band, and TV Baby. Full Golden Triangle dates are below.
None of these dates will feature Red Mass, who recently played NYC x2 in addition to a string of dates with King Khan. But Red Mass will also be in NYC next week, playing Arlene's Grocery on 10/21 as part of the M for Montreal showcase featuring Random Recipe, The Luyas, Uncle Bad Touch, PS I Love You & Radio Radio. The show is Red Mass's lone US date, and Bill will soon have much more to say about this show (stay tuned).
Full tour dates and some NSFW video is below..
DOWNLOAD: AIDS Wolf - "Teaching To Suffer" (MP3)
AIDS Wolf kicks off their North American tour TODAY (9/15) in Providence with a short string of dates with An Albatross that include a pair of NYC shows. Cake Shop gets the first look on Aids Wolf/An Albatross with Child Abuse and Forbes / Toung / Walter (as in Weasel Walter) tomorrow (9/16) and Death By Audio gets the second with Sightings and Vaz (2/3 of Hammerhead) on Friday (9/17).
The two month tour is in celebration of TWO LPs due this month via two different labels, March To The Sea on Skingraft and a remix album on Lovepump. Dig on the first track from March To The Sea, "Teaching To Suffer", available for download above.
Red Mass also plays that Providence show tonight before headling to NYC for their own shows Friday and Saturday. They then hook back up with Aids Wolf on September 22nd in Georgia.
All AIDS Wolf dates, and some video is below...
by Bill Pearis
DOWNLOAD: Mystery Jets - Flash a Hungry Smile (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Mystery Jets - Dreaming of Another World (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Dominant Legs - About My Girls (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Frankie Rose & the Outs - Candy (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Red Mass - Saturn (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Tony Castles - Black Girls in Dresses (MP3)
Looks like there are still a few tickets to go see Mystery Jets tonight at Mercury Lounge now that the band have sorted out their visa issues after having to cancel last night's show (which I was going to go to). Frank at Chromewaves caught them in Toronto on Monday night:
Over the course of an hour, they split their set evenly between Serotonin and its predecessor, 2008's Twenty-One, and gave the respectably-sized crowd something to get boisterous about - which they did, right through to the soaring encore-closer "Dreaming Of Another World". Any concerns about what would happen to the rest of the tour were set aside in favour of just enjoying the moment.Looking through Frank's photos of the show, I was happy to see Mystery Jets aren't sporting any fashion disasters (see above) like when they played at Bowery Ballroom last year. That may sound superficial but it is distracting when a band you really like dresses like Blanche from Golden Girls. As I've said before, I was a huge fan of 2008's Twenty One and think their new one, Serotonin, is maybe better even if nothing on it quite reaches the highs of "Young Love" and "Two Doors Down."
If you're going, be sure to get there early for L.A.'s Dominant Legs whose new EP on Lefse records I like a lot. Any band that lists The Style Council as an influence is gonna grab my attention, at least enough to listen to it. They played last night at Mercury Lounge, their first NYC show, and reports on Twitter seemed to be pretty positive.
Frankie & the Outs @ SXSW 2010 (more by Tim Griffin)
Mystery Jets' cancellation last night has thrown a wrench into my schedule. I had planned on spending the evening at Glasslands for the Frankie Rose & the Outs' record release party but now I'm gonna hope the show goes late enough that I can do both tonight (9/15). We'll see how this works out. If nothing else I can pick up the record a week early tonight at the merch table. It's a really good album that, if maybe a little economical in the lyrical department, definitely showcases Rose's ease with hooks and harmonies. Check out an MP3 of the single "Candy" above and you can watch the Carrie-inspired video for the song -- which just premiered -- at the bottom.
It should be a fun night all around. Light Asylum, who the Outs shared the bill for their first-ever show last Halloween, headline the party, with opening slots from psych mystics Mirror Mirror and Pigeon who I can't find any info on. (But there are at least three other bands currently called Pigeon so you might want to rethink the name.) MINKS were originally supposed to play but seem to have fallen off the bill.
Dum Dum Girls
I have to imagine Frankie's pals Dum Dum Girls will be in attendance tonight (you can spot Dee Dee in the "Candy" video near the end) if they can make it in time following the first of their three gigs opening for Vampire Weekend this week at Radio City Music Hall. I would kind of like to see DDGs there, actually, as their echo-y girl group vibe could sound amazing with the venue's acoustics. But I'm not gonna. I might, however, try to catch them on Saturday night (9/18) at Knitting Factory where they'll play with Girls at Dawn and Reading Rainbow. Their self-titled Sub Pop debut has stayed in constant rotation since coming out out in March.
While we're on the subject of bands with whom Frankie Rose used to play drums, Crystal Stilts finally seem to be getting around to making a second record. A new single, "Shake the Shackles," is due out on Slumberland Records on October 21, their first new material in 18 months. The band have struggled a bit post-Frankie, and the last time I saw them play live (Fall 2009 I think) they seemed pretty out of sorts. But both sides of the new single is good -- you can listen to it at the bottom of this post -- and hopefully they've really shaked those shackles and rebounded.
Red Mass @ M For Montreal 2009 (more)
What else? Montreal art punks Red Mass will be here this weekend for two shows: Friday at Party Expo and Saturday at Death by Audio. Both shows are with X-ray Eyeballs. Somewhere between the Damned's goth-tinged punk and Nuggets era psych-garage, Red Mass also bring a sense of theatrics to their live performances. Frontman Choyce (late of CCP Gangbangs) has no problem with high concept and brings the Red to the stage -- both times I've seen them, the band dressed entirely in shades of crimson. But the music still does most of the talking. If you like this kind of thing at all, Red Mass are not to be missed.
Red mass are on their first real tour of the States -- well, the East Coast -- and they'll hook up with King Khan & the Shrines along the way. All tour dates are at the bottom of this post.
And finally, Superchunk are here this weekend, playing Bowery Ballroom on Saturday (9/18) and MHoW on Sunday (9/19). Both shows are sold out, but you can still see them at Other Music on Sunday afternoon (1PM). I've also had good luck getting tickets at MHoW at the box office day of show, so if you're without a ticket it's worth a try.
Even if you don't get to see them, you've still got their seriously awesome new album, Majesty Shredding. No phoning it in here, this is classic Superchunk. Over at Emusic, Michaelangelo Matos wrote a great review of the record and the opening paragraph really nails it:
Superchunk sound like they've been listening to a lot of Superchunk. Well, of course -- what else would they sound like? But think about that for a second. Most bands slow down as they age because most people slow down as they age: Sonic Youth isn't about to start flirting with hardcore again; the Rolling Stones will never cut another "She Said Yeah." That's nature. But Superchunk 2010 could be easily mistaken for Superchunk 1991 -- the tempo hasn't moved and the scrappiness hasn't budged. And scrappy is what this band does.Majesty Shredding is loaded with classic Superchunk Moments, from new single "Digging for Something" (you've seen the video by now, right?) to the manic "Crossed Wires" (a 7" from last summer) to my favorite song, the anthemic "Hot Tubes." It's so great to see a band 20 years into its career knock one out of the park.
That's enough for this week. A few more picks for the week, of things I didn't cover above, day by day:
WEDNESDAY, SEPT 15
I've been listening a lot to this Translations digital single which you can download for free. Both "sides" are really good, kind of Flying Nun/GbV style indie. Haven't seen them live but they play tonight at The Woods in Williamsburg. It's a free show.
Power pop fans should head straight to the Rock Shop for Tommy Keene, Title Tracks and Valley Lodge.
The xx @ Webster Hall during CMJ (more by Vincent Cornelli)
tonight in NYC
* Sharon Jones @ Starland Ballroom
* Darmstadt @ Issue Project Room
* Friendly Fires, The xx @ Webster Hall
* Gnaw, Earthen Grave, Iron Man @ Europa
* Brendan Benson, Cory Chisel @ Maxwell's
* Bowerbirds, Sharon Van Etten @ Union Pool
* Richard Buckner, Milagres @ Mercury Lounge
* Stalkers, The Beets, War Party @ Glasslands
* Golden Error & Red Mass @ Dead Herring
* Espers, Azita, Doug Paisley @ The Bell House
* Hot Tuna, Loudon Wainwright III @ Beacon Theatre
* Alicia Hall Moran, Gordon Voidwell @ The Kitchen
* Ladytron (DJ), Yes Giantess @ Tribeca Grand Hotel
* The Queers, The Leftovers, The Sights @ Maxwell's
* Ghostland Observatory, Slapping Purses @ Terminal 5
* Finding Fiction, Beehive, Picture Picture @ The Cameo
* Sam Champion, Matt Trowbridge, Electric Owls @ Union Hall
* Heloise & The Savoir Faire, Midnight Magic @ Brooklyn Bowl
* El Vez, Los Straightjackets, The Lovely Elvettes @ Bowery Ballroom
* Pants Yell!, The Surprisers, Mike Albo, Fluffy Lumbers @ Bruar Falls
* Air Waves, Talk Normal, US Girls, Total Slacker @ Secret Project Robot
* Black Sheep, Shinobi Ninja, Rad Out Crew, Nacirema @ Santos Party House
* Christina Courtin, Alaska Alaska, Alec Stephen, EJS @ Pete's Candy Store
* Zeke Virant & the Brain Rain Players, Cloud Nothings, Coasting @ Shea Stadium
* Elvis Perkins in Dearland, Himalayas, Max Silvestri @ Music Hall of Williamsburg
* Terra Nova: Sinfonia Antarctica w/ DJ Spooky & ICE @ BAM Howard Gilman Opera House
* Benefit show w/ Tony Conrad & Jutta Koether, Aki Onda, MV Carbon @ ParisLondonWestNile
* Ambergris, Boogie Boarder, Dubknowdub, Graffiti Monsters, Mark Lord, Nick Gazin, Sam Gas Can, Russian Tsarlag @ DBA
Cloud Nothings are in town. They played their first show ever last night at Market Hotel. Their second show is tonight at Shea Stadium.
MARTHA STEWART HOLIDAY CRAFT SALE
Where: Starrett-Lehigh Building, 601 W 26th St between Eleventh and Twelfth Aves, ninth floor (marthastewart.com)There's also a craft fair on Mulberry Street, and the Bust Holiday Craftacular is Sunday.
When: Saturday, December 5, noon-6pm, free
Why go: It's the domestic diva's first-ever holiday craft sale, which features home accessories, jewelry, ornaments and apparel from employees and friends of Martha Stewart Living Ominmedia, as well as crafters who've appeared on the Martha Stewart Show. In other words: by Stepford types, for Stepford types.
Don't miss: BrooklynVegan's DJ Bill Pearis spinning holiday music and indie rock, and the very Martha-esque gift-wrapping station. - Time Out
Sunday is also the day to see Beatles songs performed on ukuleles.
Q: Did Sam Champion break up?Sam Champion member Sean Bones will DJ between sets. Sam Champion's remake of Weekend at Bernie's below..
A: Kind of, yeah, I think so.
Q: Is Saturday, December 5th at Union Hall your last show?
Black Sheep play Santos tonight! Video for "Without a Doubt" below...
by Bill Pearis
DOWNLOAD: The Big Pink - Velvet (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: The Big Pink - Dominoes (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Pants Yell! - Cold Hands (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: JEFF the Brotherhood - Bone Jam (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: JEFF the Brotherhood - Heavy Damage (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Sisters - Accolades (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Sisters - Street Cars (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Coin Under Tongue - Junksmith (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Dinowalrus - Electric Car, Gas Guitar (MP3)
Slow week my ass! The next four or five days are positively packed with shows, at least from a TWII standpoint. No time for small talk, let's get into it.
Tonight/Thursday's the big birthday celebration for Skippy who books The Bell House and Union Hall. I wish I could throw a party for myself and get bands like
Field Music (one of two American Performances in 2009) and Wye Oak to play it, not to mention a rare appearance by the mostly defunct '90s electropop band The Pulsars. Also, a band (or someone) called "Rumours" is on after Field Music play. Skippy has been tight-lipped about what this is, but my money is on some sort of all-star Fleetwood Mac cover band. (And if that's the case I'd bet you $20 it involves Carl Newman.) You're invited, too, to this "Improbable Birthday Concert" as tickets ($12, cheap!) are still available.
I've had the new Field Music album, Field Music (Measure), on repeat for the last couple days and it's another knockout from the Brewis brothers, 20 tracks that further refine their distinctive mix of baroque pop, nervy new wave, prog, krautrock and whatever else they're into at the time. It's a Field Music album, no doubt about it, but it's less buttoned up, more rhythm heavy ("Let's Write a Book" shows that one of them's been listening to Can) and willing to give anything a try. If you've never seen Field Music live before, you should definitely come out, the Brewises are shit-hot musicians as well (David is an especially impressive drummer). There used to be a lot of switching instruments when they were a trio, but now as a four-piece I wonder if that'll still happen.
We'll see tonight
Long-running Upstate New York power pop band The Figgs are are in town for two shows (or three if you count Saturday night in Staten Island): tonight/Thursday (12/3) at Bruar Falls with the Nouvellas and Friday (12/4) at Cake Shop. Both shows are with Detroit's The Sights who open for The Queers at Maxwell's on Saturday (The Queers play Southpaw tonight).
The Figgs are a band who I've always liked but never closely followed. Luckily, my friend Steve, who writes a genuine photocopied fanzine The Reynolds Report (now also available in convenient blog form) is arguably the foremost Figgs authority (and you'd be a fool to argue with him on this subject), so I asked him to write a little guest paragraph for this week's TWII:
The Figgs have been creating great power pop for two decades now, with no signs of stopping any time soon. Steeped in the tradition of The Replacements, Cheap Trick and Elvis Costello, their annual Christmas shows are always a great time to catch them as the coming of winter seems to kick the trio's playing up just a notch. Look for them to break out songs from their upcoming album (due out in April), a choice Christmas cover or two, a wide selection from their nine albums and their brand new 45 "Casino Hayes." I'm pretty sure it's the best song about a gambling-addicted drummer (um, their own) ever.The Figgs rock, so go see them! All dates below.
There's a competition for the power pop dollar this weekend. If you're not going to the Figgs on Friday (12/4), it's probably because you're going to see Sloan at the Bell House. That's where I'll be. My love of these Canadians is no secret, and even when they've made a less-than-totally-awesome album they're always worth seeing in concert, one of my favorite live bands of the '00s. (I'm pretty sure I've seen them at least once a year since 2001.) They've got a new five-song digital-only EP, Hit & Run, which is pretty darn good. Chris Murphy contributes two tracks, including the excellent "Take it Upon Yourself," and the rest of the band each gets one. Tickets ($17.50) are still available. They play with fellow Torontonians, the lovely and talented trio Magneta Lane, and locals Deleted Scenes.
And wait there's more on Friday! Speaking of Canadian, maybe you happened across one of the 37 reports I recently filed from this year's M for Montreal festival. One of that city's more exciting underground bands, Red Mass, make their American debut at Live With Animals Gallery in Williamsburg (same address as Monster Island). Their brand-new EP on Montreal label Semprini is a nice chunk of psych-garage and they definitely put on a good show. The big question is how big a Mass will they be? I've seen them twice -- once there was 10 of them, the second time only four. Safe bet would be somewhere in between. (Canadians love a good excuse to come party in NYC.) If I wasn't already spoken for, I'd definitely being going to see them. Golden Triangle are also on the bill. Singer Choyce told me their might be a house party gig on Saturday too, so look out for that.
The Big Pink
Oh crap, there's still more. The Big Pink, who are making a stink in the UK, are on their first major tour of the U.S., stopping at Bowery Ballroom tonight (12/3) and Music Hall of Williamsburg tomorrow (12/4). Haven't seen them live, but their album A Brief History Of Love is a nice slice of electro-shoegaze that reminds a lot of 30-somethings of early-'90s band Chapterhouse. The anthemic, fist-pumper "Dominos" might not stand the test of time but as an of-the-moment signifier, it's one of 2009's more memorable indie singles. You can download it at the top of this post. I hope they use lots and lots of dry ice and strobes. Crystal Antlers and Von Haze open both shows.
Pants Yell! @ The Bell House on 11/14 (more by Tim Griffin)
If you missed them when they played the Slumberland 20 party at the Bell House a few weeks back, you can download the audio from that show, and you can catch Boston's Pants Yell! at Bruar Falls on Saturday night which might be the last time they ever play the NYC area as they've vowed to break up next year. They'd be going out on a good note if that holds true, as their new album on Slumberland, Received Pronunciation, is another charming slice of deceptively gentle guitar pop. Pants Yell! rock more live than you might expect, they're drummer in particular is kind of a beast on the kit. They also know their indie rock history, from the Pastels and Felt to the Aislers Set, Unrest and beyond. The cover art, complete with a faux Japanese Obi strip, was done by Unrest/Teenbeat/Air Miami/Flin Flon/Cotton Candy maestro Mark Robinson.
JEFF the Brotherhood @ Glenn Danzig's House in Nashville (more by Paul Birman)
BV faves JEFF the Brotherhood, who've had a pretty good 2009, are back in town for the zillionth time this year (seems like they're here as much as Nashville) but that's okay, you don't really tire of their awesome power. Have you heard their album, Heavy Days? It's great. I know I tend to like the cardigan pop, but riffs and grooves this intense can not be denied. And they are just the best live. The vinyl of Heavy Days just got a second pressing with a new back cover, and there's also a new single, "Heavy Damage," which you can pick up at the merch table. The play Saturday (12/5) at Bowery Ballroom opening for Ted Leo (sold out), and then again on Monday (12/7) at Mercury Lounge for what they say is their last show of '09.
The Monday show is solid as a rawk. (Did I just write that? I'm doing this super late at night.) Also on the bill are Death by Audio's Sisters (noise pop backed by a foreboding amp monolith) and Coin Under Tongue (old school riff-heavy hard rock), plus Dinowalrus (kitchen sink psych not unlike early Flaming Lips). Sure it's a Monday, you're tired, but this bill is like aura caffeine. Show's eight bucks and tickets are still available. It's a bit weird to have JEFF in town and not playing Death By Audio, but if they can tear up Pianos on a Thursday afternoon (as they did at the BV day party during CMJ), they can destroy Mercury on a Monday night.
Dinowalrus, fronted by Titus Andronicus guitarist Pete Feigenbaum, are also at Union Pool tonight (12/3) with Dan Friel and others.. The MP3 on top of this post is from their debut album "%" which comes out on Kanine in January.
And finally, Brooklyn indiepop mainstays The Besties are calling it quits. I know, it's sad. Here it is in their words, straight from MySpace:
The Besties are officially done. As happens with many awesome relationships, stuff happens and things get hard, and so you end it and remain friends and all that junk. It's like that. We guess? Well, Kelly moved to Asheville, and Frank renewed his vows with the city of Boston. And other stuff. So there's that.Those two shows are Friday (12/4) at Asbury Lanes in Asbury Park, NJ and then their last-ever performance will be Sunday (12/6) at Bruar Falls, which is made extra special because Bunnygrunt are coming in from St. Louis just to play this farewell show.
Here's the good news! We are playing two last shows around NYC in December, and we plan on going out with a serious bang. So sell some CDs (keep the Lemonheads ones), bodily fluids or organs for plane ticket money, start hitchhiking, do whatever you need to do - let's party!
Like the Besties, I must now say goodbye. But just for this week. Flyers and applicable tour dates follow...
SXSWeek 2010: March 12-21The intial lineup of bands playing the music portion, below...
Interactive: March 12-16
Film: March 12-20
Music: March 17-21
by Bill Pearis
DOWNLOAD: Red Mass - Saturn (MP3)
Red Mass @ La Sala Rossa - Nov 18, 2009
I'm currently up here in Montreal getting ready for the fourth annual M for Montreal, a music festival/industry event mashup that showcases nearly 30 of the city's bands/artists who are ready, in the eyes and ears of festival organizers, to make the leap from a local act to the international stage. Or something like that. In for the fest are journalists, bloggers, talent bookers, concert promoters and music supervisors from around the world (well, mainly North America and Europe) ready to see what Montreal's got.
The action doesn't start proper Thursday tonight but we got an unofficial taste of Montreal Wednesday night at La Sala Rossa, a cool, medium-sized venue that's above a tapas restaurant. The crimson walls and velvet curtains of the club were a perfect backdrop for Red Mass who were having their record release party. Their first-ever gig was at last year's M for Montreal so this served as a one-year anniversary of sorts as well, not to mention being a record release party for their new EP on Semprini Records. You can download "Saturn" from that record at the top of this post. Cover art below.
Last year, there were about 10 folks in the band, including a dude who only wore a Speedo and gold paint. Red Mass have now slimmed to a lean, mean quartet, though a violinist and oboe player were brought out on a couple songs which is maybe not what you'd expect from a band whose sonic influences seem to be of the Stooges/Damned/Misfits variety. Frontman Choyce (late of CPC Gangbangs and a slew of other Montreal garage bands) clearly knows what he wants, no matter how many musicians are on stage. He also carries the whole color thing through -- appearing onstage first in a red cape and hat, and then later in a red smoking jacket; the keyboardist/percussionist had a cherry swath of makeup across the middle of his face. Red Mass tore through eight or nine songs in 20 minutes before taking a 15 minute beer break, returning for a second set of longer, dronier, noisier, weirder material. Good stuff.
Red Mass will make their NYC (and American) debut Friday, December 4 at the Live With Animals gallery (210 Kent, part of the Monster Island space) in Brooklyn, playing with Golden Triangle. I'm told they'll also play the next night too, venue TBD.
Red Mass weren't the only band on the bill at La Sala Rossa. We also got Dead Wife, a very young punk band who've also been together for about a year. All girls apart from their speed machine drummer. What they lacked in chops and songwriting (we're talking straight up shouty shambolic punk) they made up for with attitude. They definitely believe it.
A flyer from the show, a few more pictures and video of Red Mass performing "Saturn" are after the jump...