Entries tagged with: Sonic Youth

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Art of Touring

Hello Everyone,

Myself [Mia Clarke of the indefinitely-on-hiatus band Electrelane] and Sara Jaffe (formerly of Erase Errata) have co-edited a book called The Art of Touring. The book features artwork, photography and writing reflecting life on the road, plus a DVD of live footage. Contributors include Sonic Youth, Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Devendra Banhart, Electrelane, the Ex, Le Tigre, Explosions in the Sky, Jem Cohen, Tara Jane ONeil and many more.

The book is published by the wonderful Portland-based imprint, Yeti.

We are going to have a couple of events to celebrate the release of the book. The first will be in NYC on August 4th 2009. We will have a reading at Bluestockings bookstore in Manhattan from 7pm, featuring Sara Jaffe, Jem Cohen, Sara Marcus, myself and others. Then, from 10pm-2am, I will be DJing as one half of DARK HABITS at Bruar Falls in Brooklyn.

Any NYC-based people, it would be lovely to see you there!

Mia

The above-mentioned NYC reading & DJ sets are tonight (8/4) (not to be confused with the reading @ Union Hall) (or the Nick Cave one happening in September) .

Then tomorrow (8/5) at Bruar Falls:

FRIENDS WITH BENEFITS reading series:
SARA JAFFE [ERASE ERRATA]
SUSAN HWANG [BUSHWICK BOOK CLUB]
AARON HARTMAN [OLD TIME RELIJUN]
SHARON VAN ETTEN 8PM
Portland, Oregon's Fontanelle Gallery is hosting an exhibition of photos from the book, which opens August 6th. The gallery is also holding a special event on August 22nd with Sara Jaffe, Tara Jane Oneil, and Julianna Bright (The Golden Bears). More info on the exhibit and event below...

Continue reading "The Art of Touring - a book w/ related NYC events (tonight) "

photos by Bao Nguyen, words by Martin Longley

Sonic Youth

The 'A' train is not carrying its accustomed load, up at 175th Street. Droves of downtown rock'n'rollers are arriving at the relatively underused United Palace Theatre, on the less-frequented Washington Heights section of Broadway. It's an architectural wonder, impressively elaborate even before entering. Once inside, the exotica magnifies, as the foyer is encrusted on all sides by highly detailed work that can only be described as a decorative fusion. This joint must surely be one of the city's most ornate theatres, and on a particularly grandiose scale. It's best described as a dripping melange of Moorish, Hindu, Gothic, Rococo and Coney Island motifs. A huge organ sits waiting, greeting arrivals upon entry. Upstairs, the sealed manager's office has a David Lynchian metal lozenge of a sign hanging above its door. Down the corridor (with its infinity of mirror-reflection lamps) is another shuttered room with a keyhole that reveals an empty banquet table. The Room Of Rest has a row of porcelain urinals to covet. Upon entering the loges (balcony, to ordinary mortals), the full scale of this massive space is revealed, the vast walls continuing the densely barnacled theme. Although grand, there's also a sense of faded decadence, an almost morbid aura of decay. Upstairs, though, the acoustics are reverberational in the extreme.

review continued w/ more pictures & setlist, below...

Continue reading "Sonic Youth & The Entrance Band @ United Palace Theater in NYC - pics & setlist"

by Black Bubblegum

DOWNLOAD: Nebula - "Pulse" (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Nebula - "The Dagger" (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Night Horse - "Good Bye Gone" (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: The Entrance Band - "Grim Reaper Blues" (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Naam - "Kingdom" (MP3)

Nebula, inna black-metal stylee
Nebula

Call it the unofficial Tee-Pee-clusterfuck week if you want, but for nine days this August, four separate tours featuring bands on their label will pound NYC with a barrage of shows, with a few shows falling on the same day.... sigh.

First up, the psychedelic LA band Nebula have announced a US tour with The Entrance Band. That includes a stop at Santos Party House on August 22nd with Naam. Tickets are on sale. Nebula are touring to promote their Heavy Psych (the LP name and in practice), which will pounce on an unsuspecting public on July 7th via Tee Pee. Check out "Pulse" and The Dagger" from that LP, both of which are downloadable above.

The Entrance Band (an Ecstatic Peace-signed band who are sometimes just called "Entrance") are also touring with Sonic Youth even sooner. In fact they are playing United Palace in NYC with them on July 3rd (tickets are still available).

The Entrance Band is one of a few openers that are scheduled for the Sonic Youth tour which has Sonic Youth taking July 4th and 5th off. The Entrance Band aren't taking as long of a vacation though. You can catch them headline Southpaw in Brooklyn on the 5th (this Sunday) with TK Webb & the Visions. Tickets are on sale.

Meanwhile, another Tee Pee band from the westside is hitting the eastern shores within a week of Nebula's show at Santos AND have a release coming on the same day as Heavy Psych. Night Horse, who share guitarist Justin Maranga and drummer Brandon Pierce with the mighty Ancestors (not the black metal band), have scheduled a pair of NYC area dates for the second week in August. They play Pianos on August 13th with TK Webb & The Visions and Union Pool on August 16th with Tournament and Orphan. Night Horse will release the first of a three part split 7" series planned for this summer with Dirty Sweet. Look for that 7" on July 7 and check out the first track, "Good Bye Gone", available above.

Next up, Swedish doom-proto types (or is that doom-prototype types?) Graveyard are scheduled to tour the US with CKY (yes, the one with Bam Margera's brother) which includes a NYC date at Gramercy Theater on 8/13, same night as Night Horse at Pianos. Tickets are on sale.

Oh, and did I mention The Warlocks shows at Bowery Ballroom and Maxwell's on August 14th & 15th respectively? Tickets are still available (BB here, Maxwell's here).

Although Ancestors are NOT on the road in any significant fashion, they recently announced their new album, the massively epic Of Sound Mind. Featuring contributions from David Scott Stone (Unwound, Melvins) and Sera Timms (Black Math Horseman), look for Of Sound Mind to hit stores on Oct 6th via Tee Pee Records. MUCH more on this record to come... highly recommended.

Full tour dates for Nebula, Night Horse, The Entrance Band, and Graveyard are below.

Continue reading "Nebula, Graveyard & Night Horse & the Entrance Band tour (not together) - 2009 dates (Sonic Youth, TK Webb too)"

photos by Lori Baily

Sonic Youth

If you hung out in New York's Soho neighborhood in the early 1980s, chances are you could've caught an early Sonic Youth performing in an avant-garde loft space. A lot has changed in the last three decades. Last night, to celebrate the release of their terrific new album The Eternal, the indie-rock heroes returned to the now-gentrified neighborhood to perform a short-but-sweet set at the Apple store. [Rolling Stone]
More pictures and the setlist from Tuesday's show, below...

Continue reading "Sonic Youth @ the Apple Store in SoHo in NYC - pics, setlist"

Band of Horses @ ACL 2008 (more by Kyle Dean Reinford)
Band of Horses

tonight in NYC
* DANCE
* THIS WEEK IN INDIE
* MORE NORTHSIDE SHOWS
* Fleetwood Mac @ MSG
* Vision Festival @ Abrons Arts Center
* Band of Horses, Arboretum @ Carnegie Hall
* Previously On Lost, Anamanaguchi @ Maxwell's
* Gods & Monsters w/ Gary Lucas @ Gramercy Theatre
* Joe Lally, The Glorytellers, Outpost @ Cake Shop
* The Fiery Furnaces, Newspeak @ (Le) Poisson Rouge
* Marco Benevento, White Out w/ C. Spencer Yeh @ The Stone
* Rooftop Films w/ The Hungry March Band @ Automotive High School
* The Hold Steady, Hype of the States @ Music Hall of Williamsburg
* Northside w/ Tanlines, Solid Gold, Free Energy @ Public Assembly
* Northside w/ Gigantic Hand, Himalaya, Discovery, Me @ Spike Hill
* Northside w/ Brightblack Morning Light, Zomes, Mariee Sioux @ Studio B
* Northside w/ Men & Women, Real Estate, Julianna Barwick, SSPS @ The Cameo
* Northside w/ Class Actress, Miho Hatori, Autodrone, Exit Clov @ Glasslands
* Robyn Hitchcock & The Venus 3, Ken Stringfellow, Takka Takka @ The Bell House
* Asa Ransom, Graffiti Monsters, The Johns, The Mood, Randall Shreve @ Union Hall
* Meat Puppets, Retribution Gospel Choir, TK Webb & The Visions @ Mercury Lounge
* Northside w/ Olof Arnalds, Lisa Li Lund, Sharon Van Etten, Ivana XL @ Union Pool
* Cymbals Eat Guitars, Paragraph, The Great Unwashed, Kilgore Tout Is Dead @ Martini Red
* Loud Fast Jews! w/ Tommy Ramone, Handsome Dick Manitoba, Lenny Kaye, Chris Stein @ YIVO Institute
* Northside w/ Henry Wolfe, The Albertans, Bravo Silva, The Pleasure Circus Band, Bonnie Baxter @ Coco 66
* Northside w/ Magik Markers, Marnie Stern, The Fly Girlz/Nine 11 Thesaurus, Dynasty Handbag @ Shea Stadium
* Northside w/ This Frontier Needs Heroes, Art Sorority For Girls, The Brunettes, Kittens Ablaze @ Pete's Candy Store
* Adult Swim at Santos w/ Andrew W.K., Cherie Lily, Aleister X, Bad Brilliance, Natalie Portman's Shaved Head @ Santos

Joe Russo played Sullivan Hall last night; the other half of the Benevento-Russo, keyboardist Marco Benevento plays tonight at The Stone.

Did we mention the Northside Festival is happening? The other four-day fest kicks off today in Tennessee.

Old school guitar guys Robyn Hitchcock and Gary Lucas bring the The Venus 3 and Gods & Monsters, respectively, to the Bell House and Gramercy Theatre.

Andrew W.K. and friends kick off the Adult Swim Summer at Santos series tonight with a free show at the Party House.

Sonic Youth performed on David Letterman last night. Video below...

What else?

Continue reading "What's going on Thursday?"

DOWNLOAD: Sonic Youth - Sacred Trickster (MP3)

Thurston Moore @ ATP NY 2008 (more by Zach Dilgard)
Thurston Moore

Sonic Youth will celebrate the release of their new record 'The Eternal' by giving a special free live performance Tuesday, June 9th at at the Apple Store, Soho in NYC . Doors are at 7:30 and the performance is at 9:00.

Guest passes are required to attend this event and are available for pickup at 10am Monday June 8th at the Apple Store, SoHo. One non-transferable pass per person (with photo ID) will be granted on a first come, first served basis. Please also bring your ID to the event along with your guest pass.

Tickets are also still available for the show Sonic Youth is playing at United Palace Theater on July 3rd. All dates below...

Continue reading "Sonic Youth playing the Apple Store - passes available today"

photos by Lori Baily

The Homosexuals

Matador Records helped Sonic Youth celebrate the release of their new record The Eternal with a party at Home Sweet Home on the Lower East Side of Manhattan last Friday. The semi-private show had local bands playing Sonic Youth covers while the actual Sonic Youth was hanging out in the crowd.

Bands included The Antlers, Tiny Masters of Today, Apache Beat, The Homosexuals (backed by members of Fiasco), and "The Goo Believers" (at least that's what I think they called themselves). They were Chris Brokaw (Come, Codeine), Jemina Pearl (Be Your Own Pet, Ecstatic Peace label), Matt Krefting (Ecstatic Peace label), Zachary Cale, John Maloney (Sunburned Hand of the Man), and Jaiko Suzuki (Electroputas). You can see Thurston Moore watching them from the sidelines in some of the pictures below...

Continue reading "pics from Sonic Youth's 'Eternal' party @ Home Sweet Home (Homosexuals, a supergroup of Thurston's friends, more)"

Sonic Youth @ No Fun Fest 2009 (more by Lori Baily)
Sonic Youth

Maybe you caught Sonic Youth's noise set at No Fun Fest or have been streaming The Eternal through Matador's Buy Early Get Now program.

If both left you wanting more, you'll have your chance tonight (May 22nd)

First, Bill Nace, ie. the guy who wasn't Lee at NFF, will play the late set at The Stone tonight (10pm). Joining him will be Greg Kelley on trumpet and Jake Meginsky on percussion. Before that, the Stone's May curator, Grey Gersten, performs with tape-guy G. Lucas Crane and drummer Ryan Sawyer.

If you'd rather follow the The Eternal route (ie. you're sick of listening to the record in your home), Matador is hosting a listening party for the album tonight (5/22) at NYC's Envoy Gallery (131 Chrystie St.) It's free admission, capacity permitting, but RSVP is required. Flyer below.

After that party, there's also an invite-only after-party with LIVE music at Home Sweet Home, which will be closed to the public. Local bands will be playing Sonic Youth covers. Those local bands include The Antlers (who played Bowery Ballroom last night), Suckers (who have a lot of other shows coming up), Joan As Policewoman (who recently played with Iggy Pop), Tiny Masters of Today (who are playing Citysol this year), and The Homosexuals (who are now Bruno Wizard with Fiasco as his backing band according to someone that got to the Dan Deacon show last week early enough to see their unannounced set), AND "more are being confirmed" (for tonight's show). We have three pairs of tickets (guestlist spots) to give away for the afterparty. Info on how to win them, below...

SY played a free 4th of July show last summer in Battery Park (to be released as a bonus disc with some copies of the new record). That gig was within eyeshot of the Statue of Liberty and other iconic landmarks. This summer the band is playing a free show under St. Louis' famed Gateway Arch on July 17th as part of that city's Live on the Levee summer festival. It's just one of the many dates on Sonic Youth's summer North American tour, the openers for which were recently announced.

Listening party flyer and contest details below...

Continue reading "Sonic Youth listening & after-party (w/ live bands covering SY) - WIN TIX +++ Bill Nace at the Stone TONIGHT"

HEALTH @ Knitting Factory (more by Ryan Muir)
HEALTH

HEALTH returns to NYC on Saturday, June 20th for a New York Night Train show in Brooklyn - possibly at Danbro Studios, and possibly somewhere else (stay tuned). Other bands on the bill are Awesome Color and Kid Congo Powers. Go go artist Anna Copacabanna, drum and trapeze act Wolf and Cub, projection artist Spencer Bewley and projection artists Mighty Robot AV Squad will all also be there along with DJ Josh Styles and DJ Jonathan Toubin.

HEALTH last visited NYC on November 7th, 2008 at the Knitting Factory - a one-off date connected to their tour with Nine Inch Nails.. This summer, the band is also scheduled to play Sled Island Fest in Calgary, as well as a pair of European festivals.

HEALTH's new disc, GET COLOR, comes out September 8th on Lovepump United. A single for the song "DIE SLOW" came out in April. It's now streaming with its b-side/remix on the band's site.

Awesome Color, who are on the bill of the June 20th Danbro show, will be touring this June/July with with Black Dice (June 14th Bowery Ballroom show included), and then with Sonic Youth (but not in NYC).

Sonic Youth have announced all the opening bands for their The Eternal tour kicking off at the end of June. Besides Awesome Color, other openers on the tour will be White/Light, Endless Boogie and The Entrance Band, the last of which opens Sonic Youth's NYC show at the United Palace on July 3rd. Tickets for that show are still on sale. SY's most recent NYC show took place at the Music Hall of Williamsburg as part of the No Fun Fest.

HEALTH CD art and track list, and all upcoming HEALTH, Awesome Color and Sonic Youth tour dates, below...

Continue reading "HEALTH - new CD, tour dates, and a NYC show w/ Awesome Color who is touring w/ Black Dice & Sonic Youth "

photos by Lori Baily, words by Andrew Frisicano

Sonic Youth

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...

Continue reading "No Fun Fest @ MHOW - night 2 (Sonic Youth) - pics & video"

Sonic Youth

Tickets for the Sonic Youth show at United Palace are now on AmEx presale. They go on general sale Saturday at 10am. All dates HERE.

Clyde Concert Band

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.

Tickets are on sale for both NYC Vaselines shows (Bowery Ballroom and Music Hall of Williamsburg)

Tickets are on AmEx presale (@ noon) for the Eagles of Death Metal show at Webster Hall.

Tickets are on AmEx presale (@ noon) for the Lemonheads show at Bowery Ballroom.

Yo La Tengo is opening for Wilco at Keyspan Park. Tickets are still on sale.

There are Ticketmaster pre-sales starting on Thursday and Friday for the Sonic Youth show at United Palace.

Sonic Youth is also playing Austin City Limits and the Capitol City Block Party.

Some videos of The Zombies below...

Continue reading "the Zombies, the Vaselines, the Orb, the Slip & other tickets "

Capitol Hill Block Party

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...

Continue reading "Capitol Hill Block Party in Seattle - initial 2009 lineup"

!!! is playing ACL 2009 (more by Chris Graham)
chk chk chk

"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.

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."
The entire 2009 lineup is below...

Continue reading "ACL (Austin City Limits) - 2009 festival lineup announcement"

Thurston Moore at Santos on April 7th (more by Lori Baily)
Thurston Moore

"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...

Continue reading "Sonic Youth - 2009 Tour Dates (United Palace)"

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
keiji

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.

Sonic Youth Guitar

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.

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]

Awesome story. (thx Raymond)

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.

Sonic Youth's new album, The Eternal, drops on June 9th. Check out "Sacred Trickster" here.

Trevor Dunn will play bass with the Melvins when they play all of Houdini at Webster Hall.

Tour dates, and some videos from Sonic Youth's exhibition in Germany, below...

Continue reading "Lee Ranaldo's stolen guitar recovered, Tony Conrad playing w/ Keiji Haino, a Thurston show & stuff"

DOWNLOAD: Sonic Youth - Sacred Trickster (MP3)

photos by Lori Baily, words by Andrew Frisicano

Thurston Moore

Thurston Moore played at Santos Party House on Tuesday, April 7th as part of a trio with Okkyung Lee and Ikue Mori. The Moore-curated line-up also included Fat Worm of Error and Noise Nomads.

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...

Continue reading "a new Sonic Youth MP3 & Thurston Moore Santos show pics"

Merce Cunningham & Sonic Youth & friends @ BAM (more by Stephanie Berger)
Merce Cunningham

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!
August 1 6:00pm & August 2 2:00pm, 6:00pm
location TBA, FREE
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.

photos by Stephanie Berger

Merce Cunningham

"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.

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]

The show's 4th of four performances takes place today, Sunday the 19th, at BAM. More pictures below...

Continue reading "Merce Cunningham at 90 - Sonic Youth, John Paul Jones & more @ BAM, Brooklyn - pics"

by Andrew Frisicano

Dan Graham (blue stripes), Thurston & Kim? @ the MOCA (ricardodiaz11)
Dan Graham

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.

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]

Dan Graham: Beyond will be on display at the Whitney Museum of Art from June 25th to October 11th.

Rock My ReligionGraham 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 FeeliesThe 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...

Continue reading "Dan Graham exhibit @ The Whitney, The Feelies performing"

by Andrew Frisicano

DOWNLOAD: Sonic Youth - The Eternal (montage) (MP3)

Sonic Youth @ Battery Park (4th of July) (more by Jason Bergman)
Sonic Youth

Sonic Youth's new record, The Eternal, is still set for a June 9th release on Matador Records and the label is taking preorders for the album through its Buy Early Get Now program...

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.

Moore talked with Stereogum about the improv evening and future projects, including Sonic Youth's No Fun Fest performance scheduled for May 16th...

STEREOGUM: No Fun is coming up as well. Will [Sonic Youth] be playing material from the new album at that? Doing a noisier set?

TM: We're going to compose something distinct for No Fun -- it will be fucking insane...

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."

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...

Continue reading "Thurston @ Santos (tonight), July 4th recording (w/ album pre-order), No Fun set info & other Sonic Youth news"

by Andrew Frisicano

DOWNLOAD: Sonic Youth - The Eternal (montage) (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: David Byrne & Dirty Projectors - Knotty Pine (MP3)

Dan Deacon fans @ the 2008 Bang on a Can Marathon (more by Leia Jospe)
Dan Deacon

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.

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.

Tickets are on sale.

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...

Continue reading "upcoming Bang on a Can, Signal & Steve Reich events - David Longstreth, Lee Ranaldo & Nobukazu Takemura included"

Merce Cunningham

"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.

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."

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).

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

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...

Continue reading "Record Store Day 2009: lots of bands releasing exclusive vinyl, a Bouncing Souls in-store & more..."

DOWNLOAD: Sonic Youth - The Eternal (montage) (MP3)

Marissa Nadler @ the Lutheran Church (more by Nathan Miller)
Marissa NAdler

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 Alternative Side has pictures of people preparing for U2's show at Fordham.

The MP3 on top of this post is a preview of the new Sonic Youth album.

Video of Real Estate playing at Glasslands below...

What else?

Continue reading "What's going on Wednesday?"