Entries tagged with: Stars

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Evan Dando at The Bell House (more by Graeme Flegenheimer)
Evan Dando

Evan Dando & The Lemonheads have a few random upcoming dates scheduled. The Lemonheads will share a bill with The Canon Logic on April 28th at Maxwell's in Hoboken. Tickets are still available. You can also catch Josh Lattanzi of The Lemonheads at Bowery Ballroom on May 26 & 27 as part of the Bob Dylan tribute that will also include members of the Strokes, Hold Steady, etc, etc.

All other upcoming Evan Dando dates are in other countries at the moment, including a June 16th Evan & Juliana Hatfield show in Toronto for the NXNE festival which, like Brooklyn's own multi-venue festival Northside, recently expanded its lineup. Some of the other bands playing are in the title of this post. The rest are listed below.

All Dando-related dates and some videos below too...

Continue reading "Lemonheads playing shows, NXNE expands lineup (includes Descendents, Stars, Devo, OFF!, Juliana Hatfield, more)"

Stars

First came Friday night at Terminal 5 and then a surprise show at Littlefield last night. Now it looks like tonight's day off in Stars' tour schedule is not a day off at all. See above tweet by Gilt City. Location = The Studio at Webster Hall (same building that is housing tonight's Tallest Man show). Let us know if you're able to get in.

photos by Dominick Mastrangelo, words by Rachel Kowal

Stars

Since their Friday night show at Terminal 5 was not sold out, Stars kept their Sunday night performance at Littlefield a secret until the last minute, but word spread quickly, and last night the line to get into the venue continued well down the block.

Seeing Stars play such a small room is a treat. After quite a lengthy wait for the show to begin (the doors were at 8, but the start time was 9:45), the audience was eager to show their support - especially one fan who could hardly contain his excitement. Between nearly every song, he'd lavish some sort of praise on the band. ("I love you!" "You are beautiful!" "You guys blow my brains out!" and my favorite, "You're not REAL!") The crowd's energy helped fuel the band and elevated their performance.

"It's the city so nice, we had to play it twice," joked former New Yorker Torq Campbell when they finally walked on stage. "We're so happy people came out," he continued, then launched into an appropriate introduction for the evening, the slowly building song, "The Night Starts Here."

As per usual, the band scattered long-stemmed white roses and handfuls of petals throughout the crowd between songs - only this time, nearly everyone in the room got showered, not just the people crammed into the first few rows.

Though they seemed a bit tired, Stars played a solid show and creatively drew a handful of more obscure from their discography to reward the T5 attendees for coming out to another show. Initially, Campbell's vocals were way too low in the mix, but (finally) after the ninth song, an audience member yelled out, "Turn up the vocals!" and the sound technician quickly complied. (Yet another benefit of playing such a small space.)

As was the case at their recent T5 show, Stars played a generous 5-song encore, which included a Smiths cover ("This Charming Man") and some banter about global warming, bad vibes, and Amy Millan's pregnancy. After the third song, Campbell addressed the room. "Do we have time for a couple more or is that sufficient?" Upon receiving an enthusiastic response from the audience, he continued as the opening notes of the crowd pleaser "Your Ex-Lover is Dead" rang out. "You know... I'm going to keep playing music until the day when I ask that question and people are silent."

Before their final song, the overzealous fanboy made his way to the front and whispered something into Campbell's ear. "You're going to marry your girlfriend?" Campbell repeated into the mic. "She's a lucky woman. Fantastic. Give it up for this dude. He's been awesome all night. He's half naked, he's in love. What more do you want from this man?" It was a nice moment. Then, after a sarcastic segue about heartbreak and failed relationships ("This probably has nothing to do with you"), Stars concluded their intimate set with "Tonight."

More dates HERE. Terminal 5 pics and setlist HERE. More pictures and the setlist from Littlefield, below...

Continue reading "Stars played little Littlefield (pics & setlist) "

words and photos by Dominick Mastrangelo

Stars

Montreal's Stars and Virginia's Wild Nothing are the latest casualties of the hit or miss sound at Terminal 5. To be fair, Stars are just as culpable for the uneven show Friday night (9/24), especially considering their familiarity with the venue (they played there in 2008).

If you're going to play T5 then you need to play as many upbeat songs as possible. After starting well, Stars' first misstep was bringing out a bench to perform one of their fastest numbers, "Ageless Beauty", stripped down. Way down. The stripped down versions should be saved for intimate shows (like the one happening at Littlefield TONIGHT, Sunday, 9/26). Any momentum built to that point was gone and didn't return until a singalong of "Your Ex-Lover is Dead" which was the highlight of the show.

That was followed by a confusing and rambling pre-encore lecture about the use of the military, coming out over the PA. Then Amy Millan came out alone to start the 5-song encore with "Celebration Guns." Songs like "Big Fight" and "Going, Going, Gone" never made it into the 23-song set which was dissapointing since the dynamic between the soft-around the edges Millan and the ever-intense, way-over-the-top Torq Campbell is the centerpiece for Stars. They closed the show with "Changes". A picture of the full setlist is below.

Stars are a good band and spent a good part of the night thanking the appreciative crowd, tossing roses and petals into the crowd. Campbell reminded everyone that they were a New York band first. Hopefully on their subsequent trips "home" they opt for playing the cozier Bowery Ballroom and Music Hall of Williamsburg on consecutive nights.

Wild Nothing opened the show, delivering a solid and business-like performance, though it was to a one-third capacity crowd in the echoey venue. More dates, including Littlefield tonight, HERE. More pictures and the setlist from the Terminal 5 show are below...

Continue reading "Stars & Wild Nothing @ Terminal 5 (pics & setlist) "

Stars

Friday night's Terminal 5 show never sold out so they kept this a secret until now. $10 tickets are on sale. All dates below...

Continue reading "Stars played Terminal 5, playing Littlefield SUNDAY"

photos by Chris Gersbeck

DOWNLOAD: Wild Nothing - Golden Haze (MP3)

Wild Nothing

There's a lot going on in Wild Nothing's world. The band, who hail from Blacksburg, VA, are packing their bags and moving to Brooklyn. Not really surprising, except that it took this long. They also have a new EP, Golden Haze, coming out on Captured Tracks sometime in the near future. Apart from the title cut (which you can download above), tracklistings on the CD, 12" and digital versions will vary, which reminds me of the way they used to release multiple versions of UK CD singles in the '90s to get a higher chart position. Fun with formats, or milking the fans? I guess if all the songs are worth hearing it won't matter.

No matter which one you buy, "Golden Haze" is another sparkler from these guys who have been playing a lot of new songs at their shows. And if you haven't picked up their debut Gemini yet, I think it's one of the year's best. And with a permanent line-up (and a new, really solid drummer), Wild Nothing have been a really good live band too. [Bill]

Wild Nothing co-headlined (headlined) a show with their label boss's band Blank Dogs at Bowery Ballroom on Saturday night. The all-Captured Tracks bill also featured sets by MINKS and Cosmetics. It was sold out. Pictures from Wild Nothing's set are in this post.

On September 22nd Wild Nothing will leave on a tour with Stars who they'll support through October 9th in Detroit. That trip includes the September 24th show at Terminal 5 in NYC (tickets still on sale), which will actually be Wild Nothing's 2nd NYC show after today because they also open for Superchunk at Music Hall of Williamsburg on September 19th (Todd Barry is also on that sold out bill).

All WN dates and more Bowery pics, below...

Continue reading "Wild Nothing played Bowery Ballroom (pics), touring w/ Stars, opening for Superchunk (dates)"

by Andrew Frisicano

DOWNLOAD: Young Galaxy - Queen Drum (MP3)

NXNE

We already touched on Young Galaxy in our day 1 roundup of NXNE. Here's another set of pictures from that show, with news that band be coming to the US for a tour in August. Their shows on that include an August 2nd show at Brooklyn's Littlefield. They'll also be touring Canada with Stars (a band that counts Young Galaxy frontman Stephen Ramsay as an ex-member) in October.

Young Galaxy's second album, Invisible Republic, has been out since last year in Canada - it'll get a US release on July 27th on Paper Bag Records. The record is one of 40 on nominee list for this year's Polaris Prize. Co-singer and keyboardist Catherine McCandles sings on the sweltering, moody track above.

More pictures from their June 17th set at Toronto's Mod Club and all tour dates are below...

Continue reading "Young Galaxy tour dates, NXNE pics, MP3 & album details"

photos by Toby Tenenbaum

Stars' Amy Millan @ Le Poisson Rouge - June 5, 2010
Stars

Stars followed up their Music Hall of Williamsburg tour stop at the beginning of June with another two-set show the next night at (Le) Poisson Rouge, which is where the pictures here are from.

The group's new album, The Five Ghosts, comes out today (6/22) through Arts & Crafts. For their next NYC appearance, Stars will be moving on up to Terminal 5 (again) - the show happens on Friday, September 24th. There's currently a fanclub presale for the whole tour, where you can also get a copy of the album and other merch too. Tickets for the T5 show go on AmEx presale Wednesday at 11am. General sale starts Friday at noon.

No Stars members were present at the big Arts & Crafts Fest that was the Toronto Island Festival this past Saturday, but ex-Stars member Stephen Ramsay played with his band Young Galaxy earlier in the NXNE week.

The Terminal 5 show is part of a larger fall tour across North America (which Stars are currently trekking across as part of their previous dates). More pictures from LPR, their video for the new song "Fixed" and all tour dates are below...

Continue reading "Stars album out - new tour dates, a presale, video & LPR pics"

DOWNLOAD: Dean & Britta - Making Me Smile (MP3)

Sing Me to Sleep

"Sing Me To Sleep" is a really fun compilation of lullabies and popular songs re-imagined as lullabies by some of today's best indie artists including: Dean & Britta, Tanya Donelly, The Leisure Society, The Rest, Telekinesis, Jenny Owen Youngs, The Real Tuesday Weld, Snowbird, Neil Halstead, and many more. All proceeds from this wonderful album are donated to The Valerie Fund, a 501(c)(3) non-profit charitable organization that provides support for the comprehensive health care of children with cancer and blood disorders. It's a beautifully produced album for indie-hipsters young and old.
Sing Me To Sleep: Indie Lullabies came out in May on American Laundromat Records (the first pressing came with a bonus 7" with a song by Sigur Rós). Check it out if you can, it's a great compilation (for adults at least - I haven't tested it with kids!)

Coming up, Joe's Pub will be hosting a June 13th show for the album with contributors Tanya Donelly, backed by a jazz ensemble, Jenny Owen Youngs and Julie Peel. This all-ages, kid-friendly (with face painting, free souvenirs and door prizes) starts at noon. Tickets are on sale.

Songs from the record (including Stars cover of the Smith's "Asleep") are streaming, and the Dean & Britta track is available above. Tracklist for the CD and show flyer are below...

Continue reading "Sing Me to Sleep - indie lullabies out now + an MP3 & NY show"

words by Rachel Kowal, photos by Andrew St. Clair

Stars

Between his DJ gig to kick off the evening and the two separate sets he played with Stars, frontman Torquil Campbell was on stage for nearly three hours, but he didn't seem to tire. As people filtered in the Music Hall of Williamsburg on Friday night (6/4), Campbell, billed as "Dead Child Star", selected a number of 80s tunes, delivered an impromptu lecture on Hall and Oates, and occasionally sung along to the songs he chose when the mood struck him.

Following his DJ set, Campbell took a brief respite back stage, and the anticipation in the crowd grew. There was no opening band - at least not in the conventional sense. Instead, Stars played two sets. For the first, they showcased their upcoming album in its entirety. In typical Stars fashion, The Five Ghosts is an album full of somber but danceable numbers for the brokenhearted. Things like shadows, ghosts, dead leaves, and uneasy souls haunt their lyrics. Just take a look at the ghoulish song titles below to get a taste of the pervading tone, and picture Stars performing in front of two gigantic banners depicting what appeared to be dancing spectres covered in shrouds.

But their songs are not tunes tailor-made for the dead and heartless. As on their previous albums, sexual tension permeates their music and really brings it to life. Though it would be hard to top their sexy (and disturbing) hit "One More Night (Your Ex-Lover Remains Dead)," seeing Torquil Campbell and Amy Millan sing the line, "I don't want your body" back and forth to each other with their faces mere inches apart was pretty hot.

Throughout the evening, Campbell referred to Brooklyn with a touch of nostalgia. Before they built up a reputation for themselves in Montreal, the band allegedly spent some time in New York. "You know," Campbell said, "Stars started here in Williamsburg in 1997... but walking around today, I thought I was on acid. Things are so different. But we're honored to be part of the community again."

The audience, equally appreciative, listened to the new songs with rapt attention, prompting Millan to say, "You guys are doing great. Look at you. Who says the whole country has ADD? You don't!"

Following the conclusion of The Five Ghosts' eleven songs, Campbell expressed his delight that their experiment had worked, and the group took a short break while some Motown played in the background.

By the time Stars returned, white roses had been wrapped around the mic stands and placed throughout the stage. "Give it up for the opening band! Stars!" Campbell exclaimed playfully as he took to the stage for the third time of the evening.

From the opening notes on the melodica of "Your Ex-Lover Is Dead," (from 2005's Set Yourself on Fire), the energy level in the room spiked. Drummer Pat McGee conducted the crowd in an early sing-a-long, and Campbell threw handfuls of white rose petals into the crowd as the song concluded.

The songs for the second set were determined entirely based on online votes before the show from fans, which made for a pretty dynamic show. Apparently, New York was the only city that had voted on "A Thread Cut with a Carving Knife," which appropriately features a "hot and sultry" afternoon in June (and of course, an ending love affair).

Between the additional songs about love and death and the constant scattering of roses, it was quite a romantic evening. And yes, the Canadian five-piece totally closed on "One More Night," which was pretty hot ... even if the song is "literally about fucking someone to death" as Campbell unabashedly reminded the crowd. By the time they concluded their second set, only the rose adorning Millan's mic stand remained on stage. The rest were thrown into the crowd throughout the evening and either thrived in the hands of fans or lied abandoned on the floor, beneath feet and empty plastic cups.

The Music Hall of Williamsburg show was the first of two NYC concerts Stars performed over the weekend (part of a larger tour). The next was Saturday night at Le Poisson Rouge. More pictures and the setlist from Music Hall, below...

Continue reading "Stars played 2 sets @ Music Hall of Williamsburg in Brooklyn - pics & setlist"

Lollapalooza

"The 2010 Lollapalooza line-up is official: Soundgarden, Green Day, Lady Gaga, Arcade Fire, The Strokes, and Phoenix will headline, joined by Social Distortion, MGMT, Jimmy Cliff, Hot Chip, and The Black Keys. With 130 bands on this year's bill, its sure to be a weekend long feast for the ears.

It's a monumental year for Lollapalooza, filled with homecomings, reunions, and first-times. Soundgarden, 1992 and 1996 Lollapalooza alumni, return to the Lollapalooza stage for their first performance since 1997. Green Day will rock Grant Park sixteen years after their first Lollapalooza appearance. While Lady Gaga will headline the festival only three short years after playing the BMI stage at Lollapalooza 2007.

Arcade Fire returns to Grant Park, having played the reincarnated Lollapalooza in 2005. This is the first Lollapalooza for The Strokes - and also their first show in four years. And making their Lollapalooza debut: Phoenix." - Lollapalooza
After extremely accurate early leaks and then much teasing, Lollapalooza oficially announces this year's lineup. Check it out below...

Continue reading "Lollapalooza actually announces 2010 lineup "

photos by Bryan Bruchman

Broken Social Scene @ Stubb's (SXSW 2010)
bss

Broken Social Scene is now streaming three songs from their new album at MySpace. The band will next be in NYC in May to play Webster Hall and Music Hall of Williamsburg. More dates HERE. Another set of pictures from the band's SXSW show at Stubb's (with The Besnard Lakes, Drive by Truckers and Band of Horses) continues below.

As previously mentioned, Stars will play their new album, The Five Ghosts (out June 22 and featuring contributions from BSS's Andrew Whiteman), in its entirety on their next tour. They're also taking votes at their website (soon) for what other songs they should play at the shows. That tour has been announced and includes NYC shows at Music Hall of Williamsburg (June 4) (tickets on sale Friday at noon) and Le Poisson Rouge (June 5) (tickets on sale Friday at 4pm). All dates and more album info, with those pictures, below...

Continue reading "Stars announces tour dates & more album info, BSS streaming new songs, played SXSW w/ BOH, DBT & Besnard Lakes (pics) "

DOWNLOAD: Broken Social Scene - World Sick (MP3)

BSS

Jason Collett's new record, Rat A Tat Tat, came out Tuesday (3/9) on Arts & Crafts. His tour with his backing band, Zeus (who just put out an album of their own), and other opener Bahamas starts this week in Canada before getting to SXSW next week. One of Collett's shows there will be the BrooklynVegan/M For Montreal day party at Galaxy Room on Saturday March 20th. His full schedule for the fest is below.

The three-band tour comes to NYC for a pair of shows in April. They'll play Mercury Lounge on April 23rd (tickets) and Union Hall on April 24th (tickets). Zeus will be at both of those shows (previously Mercury Lounge was listed as "Jason Collett only").

Jason Collett's other band, Broken Social Scene, will also be at SXSW, where they're scheduled for two shows. The first is Thursday, March 18th @ Stubb's with Drive By Truckers and Band of Horses. The second is the official Arts & Crafts showcase @ The Parish on Friday, March 19th:

8pm - Still Life Still
09pm - Timber Timbre
10pm - Zeus
11pm - Jason Collett
12am - Broken Social Scene
Arts & Crafts extended family band Metric play a SXSW show at Stubb's on Friday, March 19th (probably with Muse). Timber Timbre play at least one more SXSW show while in Austin and kick off a tour with The Low Anthem later in March.

The collective is currently plotting its support shows for new record Forgiveness Rock Record, which comes out May 4th on A&C. The first song off that is posted above, right above the picture of the boxset version of the album

As far as NYC shows, BSS will play Webster Hall on May 7th, and they're playing Rumsey Playfield in Central Park on September 17th (the weekend before Pavement take over the space). They have summer festival appearances lined up too (Sasquatch, Pitchfork, their own Toronto fest), which are listed below.

Sally Seltmann will also be at SXSW, though she isn't on the lineup of that Parish show. You might remember her from her old moniker, "New Buffalo". Sally's new album "Heart That's Pounding" is out April 6, 2010 on Arts & Crafts. Cover art and all dates below.

Speaking of Arts & Crafts, A&C alums Stars will be putting out a new album, The Five Ghosts, on their own Soft Revolution Records on June 22nd.

We have never written an album with this much cohesion and unity' says vocalist Amy Millan , 'It is the first time we've had the luxury of being together in a huge room writing songs off the floor. The
Five Ghosts is quintessential STARS.'
They're planning a North American tour for this May and June, where they'll be playing The Five Ghosts in its entirety followed by a set of fan-picked songs. The album tracklist, a video of the band in the studio, and tour dates for all of the above are below...

Continue reading "a big Arts & Crafts update - Broken Social Scene, Stars, Jason Collett & more - new albums, MP3s, tour dates"

by Andrew Frisicano

DOWNLOAD: Pavement - Gold Soundz (MP3)

Broken Social Scene @ Masonic Temple, Oct 2008 (more by Kyle Dean Reinford)
Broken Social Scene

Broken Social Scene will be releasing their new, as-yet-untitled album on May 4th, 2010 on Arts & Crafts. Co-produced by the band and Tortoise's John McEntire at Soma Studios in Chicago, with additional recording at Giant Studio and The Schvitz Studio in Toronto, the new album is the follow up to their acclaimed self-titled record, released in 2005.
It's hard to believe that the last BBS record came out more than four years ago. The new album's release will be accompanied by a short set of tour dates in North America and Europe. One of those will be "An Evening With Broken Social Scene" at NYC's Webster Hall on May 7th. Tickets to that are on Arts & Crafts presale now. (as are tickets for their L.A. and San Francisco shows). NYC tickets go on general sale Saturday, 2/16 at noon.

Tickets for BSS's Toronto Centre Island (Olympic Island) show on June 19th are also on sale. Toronto Island Concert will be a full-day festival with Band of Horses and co-headlined by Pavement. More acts are TBA.

Pavement, whose reunion shows are slowly creeping up, recently released the tracklist of their best-of comp, Quarantine The Past: Greatest Hits 1989-1999, coming out March 9th on Matador. Tracklist, album art and updated tour dates are below. A remastered version of "Gold Soundz" from the comp is posted above.

All BSS tour dates, the credits for the new BSS record (which included Feist and Pavement's Spiral Stairs) and more info are below...

Continue reading "Broken Social Scene - new album! & tour dates, Webster Hall & Toronto Island w/ Pavement (who has a 'Best Of' coming)"

Amy MillanAmy Millan

Amy Millan is set to release her sophomore full-length, Masters Of The Burial, on September 8 through Arts and Crafts International. The follow up to her acclaimed 2006 debut, Honey From The Tombs, was recorded earlier this year with renowned producer/sound technician Martin Davis Kinack (Apostle of Hustle/Sarah Harmer/Broken Social Scene) in rural Ontario.
Following the release of that record, Amy will set out on a tour of Canada and the US. That trip brings her to NYC for a Thursday, November 5th show at the Mercury Lounge and a November 6th show at the Bell House. Tickets go on sale for the Mercury Lounge show Friday, August 7th at noon. Bell House tickets are on sale now.

This summer Amy has been playing in Broken Social Scene including at Rothbury and at the July 11th Toronto show that had her back on stage alongside fellow BSS-alums Feist and Emily Haines. She also performed a free solo show at Harbourfront Centre in Toronto on July 25th. The setlist of that show (below) included a cover of Death Cab For Cutie's "I Will Follow You into the Dark" which is a song that also happens to appear on her new album.

Video of that performance, with all tour dates, and the full new album tracklist, below..

Continue reading "Amy Millan (BSS) - new album, Death Cab cover & tour dates "

Ben Folds
Ben Folds

WHAAAAAT?
Current mood: confused
Category: Music

hello everyone-
we don't know who put up their rant against ben folds here.......could have been anyone i guess.........but we don't know what the fuck all this is about... We do love charlie spearin............don't really know ben folds work...........anyway, i find it exciting that i dont even have to know whats going on to be contreversial..... i am now going to change the password on our myspace......i have to say, whoever you are, you've really got my style down!
wow, torq

Stars @ Town Hall (more by Bao Nguyen)
Stars

hi guys...well i know i'm gonna regret this, but i can't help myself. I just heard Ben Folds, who many of you prolly have never heard of because you don't waste your time listening to shitty mid nineties m.o.r. lite grunge, calling my friend Charles Spearins' BEAUTIFUL new record "bad spa music" on the CBC. BEN FOLDS! insulting CHARLES SPEARIN! is he fuckin' nuts? you come to our country and insult a national treasure on the radio? CHARLIE SPEARIN????? the most beautiful talented soulful brother in the whole world? a guy who has written some of the most influential, sublime music this side of heaven? WHo has just completed the Happiness Project, one of the most original and uplifting pieces of music i have EVER HEARD? Ben Folds, ladies and gentleman, is an ASSHOLE for dismissing this extraordinary tribute to life and love as "bad spa music". It makes me wanna......well you know.....kick his scrawny, washed up hipster doofus ass....but instead, i encourage you all to write to his myspace (he could use the visits) and imbed charles' music in your message so that every time some refugee from the nineties wants to hear their favourite ben folds ditty, they get charlie instead. i've said it before, and it feels right, so i'll say it again;
BEN FOLDS IS AN ASSHOLE.

let the games begin!!!
xo love and hate torq@stars

UPDATE: Torq claims he didn't write this!

Wiki say, "Charles Spearin is a Canadian musician. He is a founding member of Do Make Say Think. Along with Kevin Drew, he formed KC Accidental. He also contributes to Broken Social Scene and Valley of the Giants. He is easily recognized on stage by his trademark moustache. His newest album The Happiness Project [was] released on February 14th, 2009 on the Arts & Crafts Label."

Charles Spearin is playing the Wordless Music Series at Le Poisson Rouge on March 15th. Tickets are on sale. Others on the bill will be playing the music "of Stravinsky and Stockhausen". All dates and a video below...

Continue reading "Torq from stars calls Ben Folds an asshole, Charles Spearin is playing some shows (Le Poisson Rouge)"

by BrooklynVegan Mike

Polaris Music Prize

The time has arrived to crown another Polaris Music Prize winner. Last year's Canadian award was met with mixed response as relative unknowns (outside of Canada) Patrick Watson beat Arcade Fire, Feist (my pick to win), and seven others for the top spot.

This is the most open field in the brief history of the award. There are no big acts, though Stars certainly has a large following. Most of the artists on the shortlist have been playing since the beginning of the decade or longer. Coincidently or otherwise, the two youngest artists on the shortlist, Shad (27) and Basia Bulat (24), are two of the favorites this year. With that said, there will be no real "upsets." I can see any of the nominees walking away with the prize. It seems the award has positioned itself more to elevate someone then legitimize a popular artist's success (past losers include the aforementioned Arcade Fire along with Broken Social Scene, and Wolf Parade).

Like last year, I will go over the ten nominees in order of who I think has the best chance of picking up the prize on the 29th. We start with who I think has the least chance...

Continue reading "The 2008 Polaris Music Prize is about to be awarded"

Photos by Fresh Bread

DOWNLOAD: Stars on WNYC, March 2008 (MP3)

Stars

Stars

Saturday night (September 20) Stars played their first New York gig since last October in support of their new EP "Sad Robots". Terminal 5 is the largest venue the band has headlined in NYC, and though it may have not sold out, the place looked packed. Like fellow Canadian Basia Bulat did one night earlier at Highline Ballroom (Oh, My Darling), the band played a good chunk of their 2008 Polaris Prize nominated album (In Our Bedroom After The War).

More photos of Stars and their rose-covered stage below...

Continue reading "Stars @ Terminal 5, NYC - pics & setlist"

Stars

"Stars introduce Sad Robots, September 1 exclusively through www.sadrobots.ca. A free and all new live version of the track "Going, Going, Gone", a fan favorite from the band's first LP, Nightsongs, will also be available exclusively from the website via MP3 beginning [since] that date.

Still in the throes of their theatre-as-life aesthetic and continuing to explore the art of a guarded romance, Stars will unveil the beauty and tragedy of Sad Robots with an all new live show, draped in the Sad Robots visuals while they perform songs from all four full-lengths, including 2008 Polaris Prize nominated In Our Bedroom After The War. For those lucky enough to secure tickets, a limited edition, physical copy of the Sad Robots EP will be available at each show on the tour."

Stars play Terminal 5 in NYC tonight (Sept 20). Those unlucky people who didn't secure tickets are in luck becaeuse the show does not appear to be sold out. All tour dates below...

Continue reading "Stars - Sad Robots EP, free download, NYC show Saturday"

words by BrooklynVegan Mike, photos by Ryan Muir

Basia Bulat

The shortlist for the 2008 Polaris Music Prize was announced last week.

a not-for-profit organization that annually honours, celebrates and rewards creativity and diversity in Canadian recorded music by recognizing, then marketing the albums of the highest artistic integrity, without regard to musical genre, professional affiliation, or sales history, as judged by a panel of selected critics and experts.
Unlike previous years, there are no "heavyweights" among the nominees. Stars is the biggest name on the list that also includes The Weakerthans and Black Mountain, but by no means do Stars tower over the other nominees like Arcade Fire, Broken Social Scene, and Feist did in years past. Except for maybe Stars, this year's shortlist is a collection of artists who haven't crossed over yet, but who have a good following and heavy rotation on college and CBC radio.

Crystal Castles, Born Ruffians, Destroyer, and Sandro Perri are conspicuously absent from this year's shortlist, although they did make the original 40-album long list. I think they should have also made the final cut. As we approach the awards, I will once again give my two cents on who I think will win, looking to avenge picking Feist over Patrick Watson, last year's eventual winner.

Basia Bulat also made the shorlist this year. Basia Bulat opened for Devotchka at Terminal 5 in May. Ryan took some pics that we haven't posted yet, so here they are. More of them and the entire 2008 shortlist, below...

Continue reading "the 2008 Polaris Prize shortlist, pics of Basia Bulat"

Stars @ Town Hall, NYC (more by Bao Nguyen)
Stars @ Town Hall

Stars are going on a North American tour that seems to center around their appearance at Austin City Limits on September 28th. They'll play Terminal 5 in NYC eight days earlier. Tickets for that go on sale Friday. All dates below.....

Continue reading "Stars - 2008 Tour Dates (Terminal 5)"

StarsStars

Stars are not playing NYC again yet, but they are playing a lot of other places. Presale HERE, and all tour dates below...

Continue reading "Stars - 2008 Tour Dates, presale"

DOWNLOAD: Stars - Elevator Love Letter (MP3)

Stars @ Town Hall

Though it happened during CMJ in NYC, a CMJ show it was not. Stars played Town Hall in NYC on Thursday night (Oct 18, 2007). They play Music Hall of Williamsburg in Brooklyn this Tuesday. More Town Hall photos by Bao Nguyen below....

Continue reading "Stars @ Town Hall, NYC - pics"