Entries tagged with: Sonic Youth
photos by Lori Baily, words by Andrew Frisicano
Sonic Youth ended the second night of 2009's No Fun Fest with a seated set of distorted guitar noise and drums. Instead of Lee Ranaldo (who was busy at Cannes?), guitarist Bill Nace performed with the band. (No Mark Ibold either.) The noise shifted from heavy chords, made by drum stick on guitar, to strangely tender sustained feedback and sample-and-hold-esque, skittish riffs. Like a standard SY set, Steve Shelley's tom-heavy drums weighted the action and marked changes in movements. His pummels echoed the intro to "Wipe Out" as the three others on stage took to twisting SY's sonic palette into a No Fun appropriate adventure. After one 20-minute-or-so sustained set, the musicians left the stage. A brief encore continued in the same vein. Kim Gordon intoned into the microphone ("I don't want to leave you behind," I think), causing not a few crowd-members to peak up with hopes of some classic or The Eternal material. No such luck. After four more minutes of music, the band left for good.
Radio23.org, who streamed the SY set and other parts of the fest live, tweeted, "I think we can excuse the Youth as no one else has delved into short-form improv so far... We liked the 3min30sec encore :)" Other bands on the night's bill included Blank Dogs, Mattin, C Spencer Yeh, and Pedestrian Deposit. Hearts Arena wrote...
Pedestrian Deposit: Most thrilling set of the fest so far. Even the dillweeds in the audience were quieted by the end of this. Pedestrian Deposit explores and exploits the frayed edges of sound and texture, wherever they find them on the spectrum. Moving with aplomb from penetrating high ends to heaving silences pulled back from the edge of explosive noise and percussion and then off to the final gorgeous tones of the cello. Soft landing. Everybody in that room knew that something special had just happened. Me, ecstatic.TripWire said....
Yellow Tears was the unexpected surprise of the night, winning over everyone in the room with their meticulosuly warped sample manipulations and sounds. Out of all the bands, here's one that took the twenty minute time slot and really found inspiration, breaking into sweat and taking off their shirts, and getting genuinely into it. The stage was illuminated by a single bright red light bulb. The best part of the set was the member who kept striking a large scrap of metal and sending it through various effects processors, throwing it onto the ground and making a spectacle yet wrenching some pretty freaking insane and wicked sounds from it. Their energy was welcome and the crowd response was thunderously approving from the sold-out crowd. A dude on the L train was raving about them on the way back, displaying the record he bought of theirs; I have a feeling he's not the only one.Bardo Pond played a set right before Sonic Youth, and a few others played the second night too. Who was your favorite? Review and pictures from Night One, HERE. More pictures and videos from Night Two, below...
The Zombies, The Yardbirds, and The Spencer Davis Group are going on a "Rock Royalty" tour. They NYC show is at Hammerstein Ballroom on July 10th. Tickets are on sale.
The Slip are playing Bowery Ballroom on June 26th. Tickets are on AmEx presale today (@ noon).
Tickets are on sale (@ noon) for the Orb shows at Bowery Ballroom and Music Hall of Williamsburg.
Some videos of The Zombies below...
The 2009 Capitol Hill Block Party takes over Seattle's Capitol Hill neighborhood July 24-25. The Block Party is an annual music festival that draws upon and showcases the best indie and underground rock in the US, with a special focus on its Northwest artists. Launched 12 years ago, the Block Party has evolved into Seattle's most anticipated outdoor party. With over 40 bands on 3 stages, great food, and plenty of cheap beer, this is by far the best party of the summer.Initial lineup (including Jesus Lizard) and more info below...
!!! is playing ACL 2009 (more by Chris Graham)
"The 2009 Austin City Limits Music Festival will showcase a diverse blend of acts both fresh and familiar at the eighth edition of the event in Zilker Park October 2-4. Pearl Jam, Dave Matthews Band, and Beastie Boys are performing for the first time at the Festival, with Kings of Leon, Ben Harper and Relentless7, and Thievery Corporation returning to Zilker Park once again. John Legend, The Dead Weather, and The Levon Helm Band will also make their ACL Festival debut, while Austin's own Ghostland Observatory will no doubt deliver another memorable set for festival goers.The entire 2009 lineup is below...
With over 130 artists on this year's bill, the list of acts awes at each note with the likes of Sonic Youth, Mos Def, Toadies, Flogging Molly, The B-52s, Lily Allen, Citizen Cope, Arctic Monkeys, The Decemberists, Coheed and Cambria, Andrew Bird, Girl Talk, and many more.
In the tradition of the TV show from which it was born, the Festival has always aimed to offer musical discovery for the fans. The 2009 lineup is rich with pop, country, folk, bluegrass, blues, reggae, indie rock, hip-hop, and gospel, to name a few, spanning cultures and countries from New Orleans to Venezuela to France."
Thurston Moore at Santos on April 7th (more by Lori Baily)
"Sonic Youth announce their North American tour for this summer. General tickets are on sale Sat May 2. Presale tickets on sale Friday May 1. Buy Early Get Now exclusive presale tickets available April 30."
The Buy Early Get Now presale means that you pre-ordered their new album which also gets you access to early tickets for the tour. That also means you got a free recording of the band's July 4th, 2008 show in Battery Park. It will be good listening on the train up to Washington Heights (if you don't live near there) for their July 3rd, 2009 show at United Palace. Hopefully Lee has his old guitar back by then. All dates below...
by Black Bubblegum
DOWNLOAD: John Wiese & C. Spencer Yeh - "Swedish Couch" (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Paul Flaherty, C. Spencer Yeh & Greg Kelley - "Track One" (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Paul Flaherty, C. Spencer Yeh & Greg Kelley - "Track Two" (MP3)
Tony Conrad & Keiji Haino
Experimentalists collide when Keiji Haino and Tony Conrad team up for a show at The Studio At Webster Hall on April 25th (tonight), one of only three US shows for the duo. Tickets for the NYC show are still available. Full tour dates are below.
Although the duo has not recorded anything, Keiji Haino recently dropped a new record under the moniker The Haino/Masataka Fujikake Duo, on the Japanese label Full Design Records on February 11. A collection of live material from a batch of 2005 shows in Yokohama, the record is currently available to us yankees here.
Opening The Studio show will be another violinist of the avant-garde persuasion, C Spencer Yeh, who recently dropped two collaborative LPs: Cincinatti with noise technician John Wiese (available on CSY's label, DroneDisco) and New York Nuts and Boston Beans with Paul Flaherty and Greg Kelley (available here). April 25th will be the only solo show for CSY over the next few weeks, but he does have dates as part of a duo (with Michael Johnsen) and a trio (with Rafael Toral & Trevor Tremaine). One of those trio dates will take place in NYC in the next few weeks, as part of the No Fun Fest featuring headliner Sonic Youth.
Hopefully SY's Lee Ranaldo gets his long lost Fender Mustang back by then.
The guitar (pictured above) was stolen from Lee in July 1999. Then, last week, someone unknowingly bought it on eBay, and before even receiving it (he still hasn't received it as of this post), the buyer coincidentally was "just looking at Sonic Youth´s guitars", and recognized the guitar that he had just bought as Lee's stolen guitar.
He posted his story in a thread (that is currently 35 pages long) on Offsetguitars.com. Lee was then contacted, offered the guitar back (at the eBay auction cost) and accepted. In another coincidence, the buyer lives in the Netherlands and Sonic Youth is in Europe this week. Unfortunately the guitar didn't arrive from seller to buyer in time for the buyer to hand it to Lee in person, but...
"So my brother, a friend and me went to Dusseldorf yesterday to see Sonic Youth. We spent the whole afternoon in museums to see the Sonic Youth exhibition, which was really great. I can recommend it to anyone with the possibility of going there. It made me want to start reading William Burroughs and Allen Ginsberg immediately.Awesome story. (thx Raymond)
The concert was supposed to start at 20:30 and we arrived at that time, we figured it probably wouldn´t start until 22:00 or so as that´s what we´re used to. Surprisingly, they started exactly on time so I missed a chance to get onto the balcony for special guests. So we watched the gig among the ´common´ people , which wasn't so bad, though it´s sometimes hard to stand the smell of those puny creatures. Tongue The concert was amazing, as usual with these guys, they played a normal set but when it was over it felt like they had only played for 15 minutes. The highlight for me was Kim´s singing, her voice sounds better than ever. The new songs (I think they played 4) sounded good too, but I can´t comment on the specific songs as I don´t know the titles.
After the gig was over I pushed my way up to the front row and called the guitar tech, Eric Baecht, he came up to us, gave me a mastery bridge (from one of Lee´s guitars, he even included the allen wrench keys!) on which Lee had written a thank you note, along with a couple of picks with Sonic Youth prints on them. Can´t wait to try it on my Jazzmaster! Eric then told me to wait for him to finish clearing the stage and took us to the backstage where I met Lee. We had a little chat about the guitar, Mark Ibold also showed up briefly. I met Eric again who told us we can get on the guest list for any SY gig in the future (!!!). I also spotted Thurston but he left quite early , Kim was there the whole time, didn´t see Steve.
So my friends and me hung out at the bar for a while feeling quite awkward and trying to think of something to talk to Lee about without sounding cliché but it seemed impossible so we left soon after. It was a bit of shame because they´re really kind and approachable people, but I just didn´t know what to talk about.
After all we had a great day and I´m looking forward to going to their gigs in the future. For free! HA! Plus I won´t have to worry about the show being sold out or anything." [Sauerkraut the guitar finder]
Speaking of Sonic Youth, Thurston Moore will perform as part of a trio with saxophonist Daniel Carter and Ryan Sawyer (Tall Firs, Stars Like Fleas) at Union Pool on May 2nd, with Trevor Dunn's Madlove, and Pink Noise. Madlove recently announced the release of their new album, White With Foam on Ipecac Records.
DOWNLOAD: Sonic Youth - Sacred Trickster (MP3)
photos by Lori Baily, words by Andrew Frisicano
Thurston Moore came out with Okkyung Lee, and Ikue More. I was optimistic. Thurston with a circuit bent guitar on his lap with all sorts of homemade attachments. Then a lap top and a Cello. It seemed harmless and intriguing. It wasn't. Explosions of beats, randomized harmonics and bends from the cello mixed with the constant screaming of the guitar played with knives. I took my pictures and then left. I was loosing it. This music was definitely for someone else. I had to catch my breath outside and let my mind calm back down. I was truly affected by what I had seen. So in a since I guess it did it's job. Truly Experiential Sound had been made. I really wouldn't even call it music. Do I have the jurisdiction to say that? [Quiet Color]The pictures in this post are from that show.
Matador has released a new MP3 (above) of song "Sacred Trickster" from Sonic Youth's forthcoming record, The Eternal, due June 9th. Preorders for that disc through Matador's Buy Early Get Now program get a bunch of extras (including an LP of Sonic Youth at Battery Park last July 4th). Matador also reports that SY is confirmed for the "My Bloody Valentine-curated ATP Nightmare Before Christmas...in Minehead [UK] from December 4th - 6th, 2009."
Last week, Sonic Youth performed four unique shows at BAM.
More details on The Eternal preorder plus info on a "secret" Sonic Youth London show, with all photos, below...
Merce Cunningham & Sonic Youth & friends @ BAM (more by Stephanie Berger)
EVENING STARS: MERCE CUNNINGHAM DANCE COMPANY Location to be announced Co-produced with The Joyce Theater, Merce Cunningham Dance Company will create a site-specific Event featuring a unique combination of new material and movement from past and current repertory. Come celebrate one of the most extraordinary contemporary masters in his 90th year!The above picture comes from the four-performance run that ended at BAM yesterday (4/19). More pictures from that HERE. The above description is of a free event happening in NYC this summer as part of the River to River Festival (location TBA). More 2009 River to River Fest events listed HERE.
August 1 6:00pm & August 2 2:00pm, 6:00pm
location TBA, FREE
photos by Stephanie Berger
"It is not unusual these days to hear Merce Cunningham called the world's greatest living choreographer. I go further: I have long thought that he is the greatest living artist since the death of Samuel Beckett, almost 20 years ago.The show's 4th of four performances takes place today, Sunday the 19th, at BAM. More pictures below...
His latest world premiere, "Nearly Ninety," presented at the Brooklyn Academy of Music on Thursday (his 90th birthday), is not a perfect work of art...
...The music, composed and performed by John Paul Jones, Takehisa Kosugi and Sonic Youth (Kim Gordon, Thurston Moore, Lee Ranaldo, Steve Shelley), sounds now like a rock musician's worst hangover, as if the pot and the kettle were calling each other every color under the sun before settling down and breeding a whole tribe of tintinnabulations. One powerful guitar chord out of the blue happened on Thursday to coincide with the most electrifying gear change in the Goggans-Squire duet, but even such moments are mere effects... [NY Times]
by Andrew Frisicano
Dan Graham (blue stripes), Thurston & Kim? @ the MOCA (ricardodiaz11)
Dan Graham has been a central figure in contemporary art since the 1960s. [Dan Graham: Beyond], his first American retrospective, traces the evolution of his art from his early conceptual projects and performances, to his films and videos, architectural projects and pavilions, and sculptures as well as his collaborations with musicians and rock bands such as Sonic Youth and Japanther.Dan Graham: Beyond will be on display at the Whitney Museum of Art from June 25th to October 11th.
Graham (b. 1942) has been a central participant in the development of contemporary art since the 1960s --- from the rise of minimalism, conceptual art, video art, and performance art, to explorations of architecture and the public sphere, to collaborations with musicians and the culture of rock and roll. [press release]
Graham has a strong connection to the rock and avant music world. As the press release below documents, Graham has written about bands like the Kinks, the Fall (who recently signed to Domino Records), and the Sex Pistols. And his hour-long "video-essay" Rock My Religion (1982-84) uses "footage of Patti Smith, Sonic Youth, and Black Flag, mingled with historical images of a rapt Ann Lee, the founder of the Shaker religion to trace a continuum between the Shakers, the early-American religious sect that sought spiritual transcendence through collective dance and song, and rock music."
Kim Gordon and Thurston Moore performed as Mirror/Dash at Beyond's debut opening at L.A.'s Museum of Contemporary Art in February. The pair also joined Graham for a panel discussion as part of that event (video below).
During Beyond's run in New York, the Whitney will host a series of free Friday concerts. The shows, held in the museum's Lower Gallery, are scheduled for July 10th, 17th, 24th, and 31th at 7pm. No word on who specifically, but the museum writes, "These events feature young bands that have inherited the New York rock scene from bands that Dan Graham has written about and/or worked with, such as The Feelies, Television, and Sonic Youth. As always, admission to the Whitney on Friday evenings is pay-what-you-wish from 6 to 9pm."
Last year, the Whitney's free shows included Dan Deacon on February 8th, May and April Biennial-related-shows by Gang Gang Dance and Lucky Dragons, and four free Wordless Music showsin June (with Prefuse 73, Times New Viking and others).
Other plans for the Graham exhibit include:
A music event to kick off the series; the U.S. premiere of "Put Blood in the Music" (1989), an experimental documentary on the late-nineties New York downtown music scene, introduced by filmmaker Charles Atlas; a conversation between Dan Graham and Glenn Branca, followed by a screening of Graham's "Westkunst (Modern Period): Dan Graham Segment" (1980); and a roundtable discussion exploring key themes in the work, such as sound, perception, and performance.Among Dan's music related works on view in the show will be the above-mentioned "Rock My Religion" (which features music by Glenn Branca and Sonic Youth), and "Minor Threat", a 38 minute video of the band performing at CBGB.
The Feelies will play an acoustic set at the Whitney on Friday, June 26th (presumably the 'music event to kick off the series').
We recently talked about The Feelies' continued reunion - including their big show last July 4th (when they played with Sonic Youth). Other upcoming dates for the Feelies include July 3rd & 4th at Maxwell's in Hoboken, NJ (tickets on sale) and September 11th at ATP NY, where the band will perform its debut Crazy Rhythms in full (tickets on sale).
The above-mentioned videos of Dan Graham talking with Thurston Moore and Kim Gordon, Mirror/Dash live, and an interview with Graham, all from his L.A. MoCA exhibit earlier this year, plus full Whitney press release, below...
by Andrew Frisicano
DOWNLOAD: Sonic Youth - The Eternal (montage) (MP3)
Sonic Youth @ Battery Park (4th of July) (more by Jason Bergman)
Along with your preorder of 'The Eternal' on LP or CD, you'll get an instant stream of the album when BEGN launches on April 28, and later (either picking it up at your fave local record store or through the auspices of the U.S. Postal Service) a bonus limited edition live LP [while supplies last] culled from Sonic Youth's July 4, 2008 show in Battery Park, which will contain an exclusive poster. Additional MP3's will be delivered via the BEGN site before or after the album's physical release date (June 9).As reported previously, Sonic Youth is also releasing two exclusive split 7"s (one with Beck, one with Jay Reatard) for Record Store Day on April 18th.
Tuesday, April 7th (tonight), Thurston Moore curates and performs at the Sessions at Santa's at Santos Party House. You may remember the Stereogum-hosted series from its Tuesdays in March at the venue. The bill includes performances by Thurston Moore/OkkyungLee/Ikue Mori Trio, Fat Worm of Error and Noise Nomads. (Tickets are on sale.) Flyers for the next three Sessions are below.
STEREOGUM: No Fun is coming up as well. Will [Sonic Youth] be playing material from the new album at that? Doing a noisier set?That might shed a little light on Sonic Youth's No Fun Fest plans, but not on the program for the group's four-night run (April 16th-19th) at BAM. Those unique performances will celebrate the 90th birthday of dance choreographer Merce Cunningham. Also on the BAM bill are "former Led Zeppelin bassist John Paul Jones and mixed-media sound composer Takehisa Kosugi."
TM: We're going to compose something distinct for No Fun -- it will be fucking insane...
SY's Lee Ranaldo just performed an original composition with the Bang on a Can All-Stars on Thursday, April 2nd. How was that?
Flyers (NSFW) for the April dates of the Sessions at Santa's series (minus the unannounced April 28th lineup), plus a 1991 Nardwuar interview that includes Kim Gordon complimenting Led Zeppelin (at the end), and all SY tour dates (with a bunch of European festival stops) below...
by Andrew Frisicano
Dan Deacon fans @ the 2008 Bang on a Can Marathon (more by Leia Jospe)
On April 2nd, 2009, New York's electric chamber ensemble Bang on a Can All-Stars return to New York's Merkin Hall for their annual People's Commissioning Fund Concert.Tickets are on sale.
The All-Stars will perform three world premieres by international up-and-coming composers Kate Moore (Australia-Holland), Lok Yin Tang (Hong Kong), and New York's David Longstreth, also known widely for his ground-breaking indie rock band Dirty Projectors. The second half of the concert is a terrific double-feature: a recently commissioned work by the legendary American composer Alvin Lucier, and the New York Premiere of a live collaboration composed for the group by Lee Ranaldo of Sonic Youth, for which Ranaldo will join the All-Stars on stage. The concert is a special edition of WNYC's New Sounds Live, hosted by John Schaefer.
David Longstreth has been keeping busy. He just premiered the Dirty Projectors' new 6-person line-up in anticipation of new album Bitte Orca, out June 9th on Domino. The MP3 above is his band's collaboration with David Byrne for the new Dark Was the Night charity album. On May 3rd they'll be performing at Radio City Music Hall for the same cause.
Ranaldo is also playing with Sonic Youth April 16th-19th at BAM, at No Fun Fest on May 16th, and on the band's 16th album, The Eternal, also out June 9th (on Matador).
Last year's Bang on a Can Marathon, the all-night fest happening this year at World Financial Center on May 31st, included a 4am Dan Deacon set (pic above). The lineup last year also included Signal (a.k.a. large ensemble w/ So Percussion) performing Steve Reich's Daniel Variations.
This Thursday (3/19), Reich will be speaking at Japan Society with Nobukazu Takemura and WNYC's John Schaefer in the first New Yorker/Nihonjin: Contemporary Cross-cultural Dialogues Series to "discuss post-minimalism, emerging trends in contemporary classical music and their collaboration on Reich Remixed." Tickets are available here. Reich Remixed (w/ tracks by DJ Spooky, Coldcut & more) is out now on Nonesuch (click for clips).
Signal (Brad Lubman, conductor) will be performing Michael Gordon's "Trance" at Le Poisson Rouge on April 22nd. The show is co-presented by the Wordless Music Series and Bang on a Can. Tickets are on sale. Signal will perform Philip Glass' Symphony No. 3 and Suite from The Hours with pianist Michael Riesman at the same venue on May 17th. Tickets are also on sale.
The Bang on a Can All-Stars (line-up below) are also performing at this year's Look & Listen Festival 2009 in New York (May 1-3) - which includes a So Percussion performance of John Cage's Third Construction and Child of Tree, and a Todd Reynolds and So Percussion collaboration on Meredith Monk's Gotham Lullaby (video below).
Full April 2nd Merkin Hall program and line-up below...
"April 16 marks the 90th birthday of Merce Cunningham--one of the most important choreographers of our time--whose radical approaches to space, time, and technology continue to redefine the way we experience dance. Over the course of his celebrated career, he has forged a distinctive language of movement, illuminating the body's inherent drama and limitless capacity for change. And as a longtime collaborator of John Cage, Robert Rauschenberg, and Jasper Johns, he has played a leading role in fostering innovation across art forms.This show is happening at the BAM Howard Gilman Opera House on Apr 16 at 7pm, Apr 17 & 18 at 7:30pm, and Apr 19 at 3pm. Its running time is 90min with intermission. Tickets are ON SALE (thx Hiro).
In celebration of his birthday, Merce Cunningham Dance Company returns to BAM with the world premiere of a dazzling evening-length work created in collaboration with and performed live by underground rock legend Sonic Youth, former Led Zeppelin bassist John Paul Jones, and mixed-media sound composer Takehisa Kosugi. With an intriguing multi-tiered décor by world-renowned architect Benedetta Tagliabue, lighting by Tony and Obie-winning designer Brian MacDevitt, and costumes by Romeo Gigli, this new masterpiece is testament to the boundless imagination of a man who, on the cusp of his ninth decade, still keeps us on our toes."
It's not totally clear to me if Sonic Youth will be playing any of their own songs at the four BAM performances (I'm looking into though). What they'll decide to put on the setlist at the No Fun Fest show they're playing in Brooklyn in May is also somewhat of a mystery.
Sonic Youth's 16th album, 'The Eternal', is out via Matador Records on June 9th. Maybe we'll get a plain old Sonic Youth concert some time around then.
by Andrew Frisicano
Record Store Day - a nationwide event created to support independently owned record stores - will take place on Saturday, April 18, 2009. A list of participating NYC stores is available online at the Record Store Day venue list.
On RSD, Generation Records (210 Thompson Street, NY, NY) will host an acoustic in-store by punk band The Bouncing Souls, free for customers who pick up a copy of the band's 20th Anniversary Volume 1 7-inch the day of the show.
Other events, such as in-stores at Williamsburg's Sound Fix, which announced its intent to celebrate the event with live music despite ending shows after losing its liquor license in February, are still being announced.
Many record labels are supporting the event with limited-edition records. Matador, for example, will be pressing 2500 copies each of Jay Reatard/Sonic Youth and Sonic Youth/Beck split 7-inches, plus a Pavement Live In Germany LP. Thrill Jockey is sending out 900 copies of Records Toreism, an LP that includes tracks from Mountains, Tortoise, White Hills, Trans Am featuring Tim Soete, and Baltimore's Double Dagger (who cover "Stagger Lee") and will be packaged with two zines (feat contributions from Ian MacKaye and more).
Record Store Day, which coincides with the 2009 Coachella Festival, will also be running a record shop at the fest. The press release, copied below, notes that the Coachella on-site store, "previously operated by Virgin, is noted for its high profile foot traffic and good vibe." Both events come in the same month that the Times Square Virgin Megastore will close - the NYC shop is notable for having the nation's highest sales volume. Its sister location in Union Square will be gone soon after.
Full list of Record Store Day exclusives, in the form of a press release, below...
DOWNLOAD: Sonic Youth - The Eternal (montage) (MP3)
Marissa Nadler @ the Lutheran Church (more by Nathan Miller)
today in NYC
* Young Galaxy @ Pianos
* Bjorkestra @ Jazz Standard
* Marissa Nadler @ Joe's Pub
* Holy Hail & Paper @ Cake Shop
* Van Morrison at the Beacon Theatre
* Thursday & Cancer Bats @ Nokia Theatre
* Anathallo & Sam Amidon @ Mercury Lounge
* Twi the Humble Feather @ Glasslands Gallery
* Early Man & Red Fang @ the Studio @ Webster Hall
* Rufus Wainwright (blackoutsabbath) @ City Winery
* Maps & Atlases, Pattern is Movement & So Many Dynamos @ Maxwell's
Tonight's show at Issue Project Room is cancelled.
Marissa Nadler's new album is streaming at AOL.
I saw a screening of Watchmen last night. I always meant to read the graphic novel, but never did, so even the story was pretty much completely new to me and I didn't judge how it was adapted from the original comic to the screen. That said, I loved it. Could have done without the My Chemical Romance cover of Bob Dylan though. Smashing Pumpkins-soundtracked trailer below.
Coney Island's future collides with current realities at hearing.
U2 play Letterman for the third night in a row tonight.
Tea Lounge opening in Brooklyn Heights.
Clap Your Hands Say Yeah play a new song on Jimmy Fallon tonight.
The MP3 on top of this post is a preview of the new Sonic Youth album.
Video of Real Estate playing at Glasslands below...
by Ryan Barkan
Duffy @ Lollapalooza 2008 (more by Bao Nguyen)
The cola war has been heating up globally in the last couple of months with music as the weapon of choice.
Pepsi's image rebranding campaign, including a new smile-esque logo, launched right after Christmas with a tv commercial featuring The Apples in Stereo song, "Energy". They then went deep during the Super Bowl, dropping a spot featuring Bob Dylan and Will.I.Am singing "Forever Young" as the beverage's new anthem.
Coke counters with a European spot for Diet Coke that features a playful Duffy doing things on her time during an encore break at a concert. In the commercial, she sings a cover of Sammy Davis Jr's "I Gotta Be Me."
When Sara Tate, a senior planner at the London advertising agency Mother, was asked to find a new face for Diet Coke, she knew what she didn't want. "Definitely no rent-a-face," says Tate, whose ad with Duffy will launch on British television, before rolling out across Europe. "We steered clear of yet another glamorous star with a six-figure fee who will promote anything if the price is right. The public is getting smart to that. We wanted someone who is well known, but not hugely famous. Someone who is on the rise, for whom fame is recent enough that they remember what it is like to have a regular life. Duffy was a perfect fit because, although she is extremely successful, she's still incredibly down to earth." [Via Times Online]Duffy has since cleaned up at the Grammys, at the British version of the Grammys, and - per Paul McCartney's request, recorded a cover of his song "Live And Let Die" for the new War Child Heroes comp that is released in the US this week. You may have heard the Beck/Dylan track from the same album, when it was played during the credits of last night's Oscars (more on the Oscars in a second...).
Coke's second attack is from Justice - Coke enlisted the duo along with Ed Banger Records' So_Me to design a glow-in-the-dark bottle and provide the soundtrack, their massive jam "D.A.N.C.E.", to a commercial. The bottle will be available in clubs throughout Europe. See the bottle in the commercial below.
The third assault from the Coke comes in their Full Throttle NHRA spots; three of the five have licensed songs: The Faces has "Blue Moon" by the Mavericks, The Machine kicks it country with Merle Haggard's "Working Man Blues", and Left Behind features Operator Please's "Zero Zero."
The final wave occurred as I was writing this article. A one-two punch during the Oscars with both The Boy Least Likely To's "Be Gentle With Me" and Sea Ray's "Revelry" showing up in Coke spots during the telecast on ABC (no video available yet). For those not familiar with the band, Sea Ray broke up in 2005.
Other Notable Licensing News:
(album artwork features a painting by John Fahey)As previously announced, Sonic Youth is headlining one of the three No Fun Fest nights at Music Hall of Williamsburg in May. Here is the three-day breakdown:
Sonic Youth's 16th album, 'The Eternal', will be released on double vinyl, compact disc, and digital album by Matador Records on June 9. Produced by John Agnello and the band, 'The Eternal' not only marks Sonic Youth's return to the independent label sphere (titles on their own SYR label excepted) after a long association with Geffen, but more importantly, ranks as one of their more inspired efforts in a 28 year career.
Recorded through November and December of last year at the band's Echo Canyon West studio in Hoboken, NJ, 'The Eternal' features many firsts for a Sonic Youth album, including a number of shared vocals between Kim, Thurston, and Lee, and the studio debut of former Pavement/Dustdevils bassist Mark Ibold, a member of Sonic Youth's touring band for the past few years.
No Fun Fest 5/15/2009 (tix)
Bastard Noise / Thrones / Grey Wolves / Xeno and Oaklander / Carlos Giffoni / Chris Corsano / Axolotl / Raglani / Noveller / DJs: Greh Holger, Steve Lowenthal
No Fun Fest 5/16/2009 (tix)
Sonic Youth / Bardo Pond / Rafael Toral with C. Spencer Yeh, Trevor Tremaine / Sons of God / Pedestrian Deposit / Blank Dogs / Yellow Tears / Mattin / Pulse Emitter / DJs: Invernomuto, DJ JONBENET
No Fun Fest 5/17/2009 (tix)
Merzbow / Skullflower / Con-Dom / Black Pus / Emeralds / Peter Rehberg/Marcus Schmickler / Cold Cave / Jazzfinger / Conrad Schnitzler Con-Cert / DJs: Mike Bernstein,CG Warrior
All SY tour dates and the new album tracklisting below...
photos by Nathan Miller
Pitchfork: Are you anxious about your first post-Be Your Own Pet show this weekend?Jemina Pearl and new solo band played that first show on Saturday night (1/17) at Music Hall of Williamsburg. She was opening for The Fluid. Thurston Moore was there, as you can see in one of the pictures below...
Jemina Pearl: Oh no, I'm super excited. It's been so long since I've played a show. I've been compensating by doing karaoke and stealing the microphone from people. So it's probably good for all my friends that I'm getting back onstage.
Pitchfork: Do you want to go into any more detail about the breakup?
JP: That's a loaded question, my friend. I probably shouldn't! I feel like it's been a scab that I keep picking at. It's just now starting to heal, so I need to leave it alone. I'll probably talk about it eventually, but right now it's too fresh.
Pitchfork: Fair enough. Let's move onto your new project, which includes BYOP drummer John Eatherly, right?
JP: Yeah, me and John started writing songs when BYOP was still a band. We'd write these kind of 60s girl group-sounding songs. Once the band broke up and I was trying to figure out what I wanted to do, John brought me some music that he'd written, but he was having a hard time coming up with lyrics and vocal parts. He moved into my house in Nashville and we would just stay up all night writing and it felt really natural.
We had both been wanting to move to Brooklyn, so we just left Nashville and took a Chinatown bus up to the city for like $40. It was kind of like, "Fuck it, there's no reason to be here." Nashville's an interesting city but it's one of those places that's better to visit. I'm sure everyone in Nashville's going to be like, "fuck you," but I'll say "fuck you" right back to them. It was really a spur-of-the-moment move. I brought two suitcases and my guitar; John brought one suitcase.
Pitchfork: Have you started recording?
JP: We're actually about to go do our first real batch of demos in Northampton [Massachusetts], where Thurston [Moore] lives, after the show. We want to record the album in March. And I think we're going to try and start playing around New York and New Jersey pretty frequently.
Thurston Moore @ ATP NY 2008 (more by Zach Dilgard)
1. Eight Miles High (Das Wilde Leben) - German movie about Uschi Obermaier, super 60s Rolling Stones groupie who was a commune radical in Berlin.
No Fun Fest 2009. May 15,16,17 at Music Hall of Williamsburg in Brooklyn. Daily Schedule,ticket info/prices will be announced by January 12.Full lineup below...
photos by Zach Dilgard, words by Black Bubblegum
Part one HERE. Part two below...
Friday night (sept 19) was the "Don't Look Back" night of the All Tomorrow's Parties festival at Kutscher's in upstate NY. That means bands on the bill played one of their older, well-regarded albums in its entirety.
Tortoise played Millions Now Living Will Never Die, sounding super tight and extremely impressive. Dueling xylophones were heavenly against the backdrop of synth/noise looping, and Doug McCombs definitely knows his way around a baritone guitar and bass.
Thurston Moore was up next, and if you have ever seen Sonic Youth or happened to read our recent review of Thurston's solo show in MA, you know what to expect.... Thurston wailing on the guitar, hand sliding up and down the neck like he's jerking it off, and feedback squalls even for a record which I found to be relatively poppy. Joining him on stage was "the only remaining member of the Psychic Hearts" band, Steve Shelley.
"Do you realize this record was written in a day?" Thurston said somewhat incredulously. "Recorded that day and mixed that night." Yeah, we can't believe it either.
I cut the Thurston Moore set a tad early to catch the last 5 minutes or so of Eugene Mirman's set (I completely missed Joe DeRosa and Maria Bamford) followed by Patton Oswalt. The comedians were playing the second stage, more of a ballroom-conference room-y space adorned with odd crystal chandeliers and lots of chairs set up for the comedy set. It might be tough to see the bands there, I guess I'll find out Saturday.
photos & review by Georgia Kral
There are many sides to Thurston Moore and each are represented when he plays- or rather, shreds- his Fender Jazzmaster so hard you can barely catch your breath. Last night (September 19, 2008) he gave the crowd at the Pearl Street Nightclub, in his hometown of Northampton, Mass., the goofy, fun and relaxed Thurston.
I've seen him with Sonic Youth many times- in venerable venues like McCarren Park Pool, Central Park SummerStage and even the tiny Maxwell's in Hoboken. I've seen him play guitar noise in dingy Bushwick lofts and at the tavern at Hampshire College in Amherst. But it was last night that Thurston came alive as a human and not just a rock star.
photos by Lori Baily
Thurston Moore has always been the guy who gets around, jamming with free jazz heavies or making noise with youngsters half his age, but Lee Ranaldo, his mate in Sonic guitar battery, has also been a consistent (if less prodigious) source of compelling audio documents. Veering from near-industrial loops of pealing feedback and heavy guitar to intimate pairings of acoustic guitar and poetry, Ranaldo's catalog is one of satisfying diversity. Maelstrom From Drift, the guitarist's latest, is a microcosm of Ranaldo's catalog as a whole, a collection that spans 11 years, a variety of collaborators, and a sundry mix of approaches and sounds. [DUSTED]Bagpipe player David Watson, drummer Tony Buck and Lee Ranaldo play as a trio called Glacial. Last night (Sept 15) they played at (le) poisson rouge here in NYC. More pictures from that show below...
Ian MacKaye & Thurston Moore in Brooklyn Heights Sunday (David Shankbone)
Aug 30 - Sonic Youth played McCarren Pool
Sep 12 - Thurston Moore & Lee Ranaldo played Fenders
Sep 14 - Thurston Moore & Ian MacKaye talked about books
Sep 15 - Glacial (David Watson, Lee Ranaldo, Tony Buck) @ LPR (tonight)
Sep 19 - Thurston Moore plays ATP NY
Sep 26 - Thurston Moore & Byron Coley discuss No Wave @ B&N Tribeca (7pm)
Sep 27 - Northampton Wools (Thurston Moore & Bill Nace) @ the Stone
Oct 13 - Northampton Wools open for The Dead C @ Bowery Ballroom
Oct 29 - 31 - a week of Noise curated by Thurston Moore @ Issue Project Room
Check Sonic Youth's site for more events outside the NYC area.