Entries tagged with: The Girls at Dawn

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"The thing about 'Doolittle,'" said Santiago, the band's guitarist, "is that it's still as fresh today as it was when we recorded it. I loved it then and I love it now."

Pixies at Hammerstein Ballroom in 2009 (more by Tim Griffin)

The Pixies celebrated the 20th anniversary of Doolittle on a 2009 tour that included 4 NYC dates. They've since continued touring the album and are now embarking on another Doolittle run that they're dubbing the "Lost Cities" US tour. The tour will hit smaller cities in the US that the initial tour didn't stop in. Surfer Blood open most of the tour and Imaginary Cities open the last few dates.

"Two years and counting in this celebration of Doolittle's 20th anniversary," laughed drummer Lovering. "But people keep asking us to bring 'Doolittle' to their city, and we're really happy to do it."
The tour will start in Montclair, NJ, where the band will play on October 27 at Wellmont Theatre with Surfer Blood. The tour moves to Asbury Park the next day and then to CT before continuing to NH, ME, Rochester. It then hits Easton, PA and then Huntington, NY. No NYC dates, but lots of options for those willing to take a short trip. Tickets for all shows go on sale on July 15th.

Speaking of Surfer Blood and the Pixies, Surfer Blood recently covered "Gigantic" for A/V Undercover with Sarah Baldwin from The Girls at Dawn on lead vocals. Watch that below.

"We are all big fans of Surfer Blood," said Pixies' Black Francis. "They're a young and energetic band and write great songs. And it will be terrific to have Imaginary Cities back on the road with us. They were a big success on our Canadian tour earlier this year."
Black Francis has shows coming up too including July 24 at Le Poisson Rouge. Tickets are still available.

All Pixies tour dates with more info on what to expect at the shows, and that video, below...

Continue reading "Pixies announce more Doolittle dates, many with Surfer Blood"

photos by Marcus Lauer


Crocodiles are ready to be criticized. The San Diego group takes much of its aesthetic -- black leather, bubblegum melodies, violent guitar effects -- from the Jesus and Mary Chain, and playing shows like the one it did Wednesday night at New York City's Mercury Lounge, the group does the squalling neo-neo-'60s-pop thing without apology.

"Go home and berate us anonymously on BrooklynVegan," lead singer Brandon Welchez said late in the set, name-checking a website known for its colorful reader comments, presupposing a few haters had snuck in among fans of the band. "I know some of you motherf---ers are going to. Do it -- please!"

...The Crocs played just eight songs, many of which came from their recently released sophomore effort, 'Sleep Forever.' During the fuzz tsunami that preceded 'Mirrors,' keyboardist Robin Eisenberg seemed to mimic the organ riff from Del Shannon's 1961 hit 'Runaway,' which the Crocs' DJ, decked out in rocker threads similar to theirs, had played earlier in the evening.-[Spinner]

Crocodiles headlined Mercury Lounge with support from The Girls At Dawn, Reading Rainbow, and Candy Claws on 9/22. They then played Glasslands one night later with Kria Brekken and her husband DJ Avey Tare.

If you missed it, Crocodiles will be back to play Maxwell's on October 26th. The show is the kick-off date for a tour the west coast band is going on with Golden Triangle and Dirty Beaches. The tour leads up to Fun Fun Fun Fest in Austin on November 7th (which Crocodiles are playing, but not their tour-mates). No NYC dates listed at the moment, but maybe they'll add one before Maxwell's (which happens 3 days after CMJ ends) (Golden Triangle will be playing some CMJ shows).

All dates & more pictures from Mercury Lounge (and the place to comment), below...

Continue reading "Crocodiles played Glasslands & Mercury Lounge w/ Candy Claws (pics), touring w/ Golden Triangle (dates) "

Floyd Bennett Field

"The new location is a pristine secluded beach area called Raptor Point, at the North end of the main (decommissioned) runway of the abandoned airport, right on Jamaica Bay. Gorgeous views of Jamaica Bay, Mill Basin, and of the distant Manhattan skyline; and a pretty phenomenal sunset spot." - Todd P

Details below...

Continue reading "Todd P's Unamplified Acoustic BBQ is Sunday (new location) "

by Bill Pearis

DOWNLOAD: Fergus & Geronimo - Girls with English Accents (MP3)
DOWNLOADFergus & Geronimo - Harder Than It's Ever Been (MP3)
DOWNLOADTy Segall - Girlfriend (MP3)
DOWNLOADTy Segall - Caesar (MP3)
DOWNLOADRoyal Baths - Nikki Don't (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Eternal Summers - Pogo (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Rayon Beach - The Memory Teeth (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Dog Day - Synastry (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Dog Day - Wait it Out (Mp3)
DOWNLOAD: Deerhunter - Revival (ZIP)
DOWNLOAD: Versus - Invincible Hero (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: How to Dress Well - Ecstasy with Jojo (MP3)

Wild Beasts @ Lollapalooza 2010 (more by Josh Darr)
Wild Beasts

Just like the August bounty of tomatoes, corn and zucchini that can be currently found at your local farmer's market, we looking at five extremely fertile days of live music, much of it free. Take advantage now -- this crop is extremely perishable.

Wild Beasts are stopping in NYC tonight on their way back from Lollapalooza, playing Highline Ballroom. Their second album, Two Dancers, was my favorite album of 2009 and a year later I'm still listening to it. It's up for this year's Mercury Music Prize and if anybody is going to beat The xx it'll be Two Dancers. If you missed their shows last September, or their appearances here in February , don't miss them this time. Tickets are still available. The fluid interplay between the band is something to behold -- a real case of four people working as one mesmerizing whole. And those who still haven't gotten used to their vocal style, I say go see them live and everything makes more sense.

Domino Records is offering a free downloadable four-song EP featuring "We've Still Got the Taste Dancing on Our Tongues" in original and remixed form, a track previously only available as a Japanese b-side and an acoustic version of "The Devil's Crayon." The download widget is at the bottom of this post and expires August 14 so get on that. And do go see them live tonight if you can. Denmark's The Kissaway Trail and UK artist Lone Wolf are also on the bill.

Fergus and Geronimo
Fergus and Geronimo

It's been a year since Denton, TX's Fergus & Geronimo were last in town, and while they haven't released anything new since last summer's initial flurry of singles, that should change soon. The band have signed with Sub Pop subsidiary Hardly Art who will hopefully be putting out a record sooner than later. In the meantime, UK label Transparent (who put out "Tell it in My Ear" last year) have offered up a new F&G track "Girls with English Accents" that you can download at the top of this post. Maybe a little more dreamy/folky and less soul-tinged than their previous output, it's still another winner from this excellent four-piece.

I saw them at 92-Y Tribeca last summer and thought they were terrific. Fergus & Geronimo play Cake-Shop tonight (8/11) with Radical Dads and Little Gold. They then play Saturday (8/14) at Don Pedro's with Liquor Store, Home Blitz, Moonmen on the Moon, Man, and Nashville's Pujol. That sounds like a party.

Rayon Beach

Also here from Texas this weekend are Austin's Rayon Beach who play Bruar Falls on Saturday (8/14) and Death by Audio on Sunday (8/15). Like a lot of the bands on Hozac Records (or bands from Austin for that matter), this trio fit under the psych/garage umbrella but there's a decided Brit bent to their music. Baroque garage, is that a thing? Think Syd-era Pink Floyd or The Pretty Things more than Woven Bones. Make no mistake -- Rayon Beach can and do get plenty loud. It's just sometimes with pinkies extended. Check out Memory Teeth's title track at the top of this post.

The Bruar falls show is with Girls at Dawn and Xray Eyeballs; the Death by Audio show also features The Beets and Andrew Graham & Swarming Branch.

Ty Segall

Ty SEgall

We're just getting started. Ty Segall and The Royal Baths are here from San Francisco, playing Cake Shop on Thursday (8/12) and Death by Audio on Friday (8/13). For my money, it doesn't get much better in the new garage scene than this guy, who has been cranking out records over the last two years. Amazingly, they're pretty much all good, and each record goes somewhere new. The latest, Melted, just out on Goner Records, adds some nice '60s paisley pop touches. You can download two tracks from it at the top of this post. And he's great live.

The Royal Baths, meanwhile, are sort of the flip side to Ty's sunshine pop. I wrote before that they're "kind of bad trip acid rock, dark and seedy but not atonal. But it's definitely down the rabbit hole. In a good way." Royal Baths debut LP is due out on Woodsist in September and you can check out album track "Nikki Don't" at the top of this post.

Eternal Summers
Eternal Summers

Still more. Roanoke, VA's Eternal Summers are back -- they were last here for the Northside Festival -- for two shows: Thursday (8/12) at new Williamsburg venue The Pyramids and then Friday night (8/13) at Cake Shop. The band have signed with Kanine records who will put out their first full-length, Silver, in September. You can check out the album's first single, "Pogo," in the popular MP3 format at the top of this post. If you dig C-86 inspired pop like Brilliant Colors or Liechtenstein, you should definitely seek this duo out. Absolutely worth seeing live and nice folks too.

Both shows Eternal Summers are playing have pretty stacked bills. The Pyramids gig is with Philly's Reading Rainbow, all-girl quartet Rescue Bird, the shambly goodness that is German Measles and the wistful surf of Family Trees; Friday's Cake Shop show also has new-ish Brooklyn duo Yvette, the tinny, witty pop of Knight School and Halifax, NS band Dog Day.

Dog Day
Dog Day

Dog Day are actually here playing two shows. They play Thursday (8/12) at Bruar Falls in addition to the Cake Shop show on Friday. It's been a while since Halifax's mid-90s indie explosion that gave us Sloan and Thrush Hermit, but Dog Day are helping put the coastal city back on the map. Led by husband-and-wife team of Seth Smith and Nancy Ulrich, the quartet make moody, melodic indie rock that is not too dissimilar from The Figurines or The Comas. Last year's Concentration was one of 2009's lost gems. There's two songs to download at the top of this post and I highly suggest you do. You might find yourself saying "why haven't I heard these guys before?" Normally a quartet, for these NYC shows Dog Day will just be a duo of Smith/Ulrich and they'll be testing out new songs for their upcoming album.

Savoir Adore @ Coco66 for Northside (more by Don Gochenour)
Savoir Adore

And last but not least, Friday is the last Seaport Music Festival show of the season but they are really going out with a bang with The Wedding Present and Savoir Adore. I'm told we're getting a full 90-minute set from the Weddoes pretty close to what they played at Bowery Ballroom back in April: a career-spanning "hits" set and then they'll play 1989's Bizarro in full.

I saw the Bowery Bizzaro show and it was fantastic, especially the stuff from Side Two of the LP, the long, jangle-on-speed workouts of "Bewitched" and "Take Me!" David Gedge may be 50 but he can still tear into his guitar like Thatcher was still in office. There's video of "Take Me" from Bowery at the bottom of this post. The hits set was peppered with a few new songs too, which I thought were pretty good.

Savoir Adore, one of my favorite new NYC bands of the last few years, are always good live. If you have yet to check out their self-titled debut from last year, you definitely should.


As if this wasn't enough, here are a few more picks by day that weren't already covered above:


Two of the best new bands of the last year -- Twin Sister and Oberhofer -- play Mercury Lounge with Ontario's MemoryHouse. Twin Sister and Memory House also play together on Thursday (8/12) at Monster Island Basement, the start of a two-week tour together. All dates at the bottom of this post.

At Coco 66 it's another installment of Show Off Your Sugar which pairs one band and one author to benefit 826NYC, a non-profit writing center for New York City students. Rock critic Chuck Klosterman reads and Here We Go Magic will rock.

continued below...

Continue reading "Wild Beasts, Fergus & Geronimo, Rayon Beach, Ty Segall, Eternal Summers, Dog Day, the Wedding Present & more in This Week in Indie "

by Bill Pearis

DOWNLOAD: White Wires - Pretty Girl (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: White Wires - Ha Ha Holiday (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: White Wires - Did You Forget My Name? (MP3)

White Wires @ SXSW
White Wires

I think the single best SXSW 2010 performance by a band I hadn't seen before had to have been Canadians The White Wires, who I caught at the Trouble in Mind party at the Longbranch Inn (my vote for Worst Bathroom at SXSW 2010).  The Ottawa trio ripped it up with a short, sharp set of hook-laden rock n' roll that reminded me a lot of late '70s new wave -- think the Nerves, Rezillos or even Tom Petty. Despite being mid-afternoon, they had the crowd dancing and left me wanting more. Seriously awesome.

This week, there's finally more. On their way down to this year's Atlanta Mess-Around (April 23-25), The White Wires are stopping at Cake Shop on Thursday (4/22) where they'll play alongside Alabama's also-good Thomas Function and locals We Are Country Mice. The show is put on by Daed Pizza which is a new label/party night from the Cake Shop/Bruar Falls folks. It's White Wires' only NYC performance, so don't miss it.

There are three White Wires MP3 to download above: "Ha Ha Holiday" from their debut LP which came out last year on Douchemaster Records; "Pretty Girl," the killer A-side to their single on 7"-only label Trouble in Mind; and "Did You Forget My Name" from their upcoming album on Dirtnap Records.

Thomas Function also play on Friday (4/23) at Monster Island with Harlem and Girls at Dawn -- that's a good show too. All tour dates for White Wires and Thomas Function, the full Mess-Around linep, plus some videos, below...

Continue reading "White Wires play NYC, with Thomas Function & this weekend's Atlanta's Mess-Around - MP3s, videos & 2010 dates "

by Bill Pearis

Wedding PresentWedding Present

There's a lot going on this weekend but the show I'm most excited about this weekend is The Wedding Present who are in town performing their 1989 classic Bizarro in its entirety. They'll do it at Maxwell's on Saturday night (4/10, Sold Out) and then Bowery Ballroom on Sunday (not sold out) (4/11).

I won't lie: you're looking at a Wedding Present superfan. Like a lot of Americans, Bizarro was the first album I heard and is near and dear to me for that reason. (1991's Seamonsters is my all-time fave, though.) Bizarro is the peak of their early sound -- jangle pop played hard and very fast -- ten bashers that climax with the nearly ten minute "Take Me!" that might be the band's most manic song ever. Magnet asked frontman David Gedge, who turns 50 on April 23rd, a question I was wondering about.

Magnet:There's a lot of frantic guitar strumming on Bizarro, songs like "Kennedy" in particular. Twenty-plus years later, how worried are you that you might need frequent breaks during the shows?

David Gedge: I'm not going to deny that it's a challenge! With Bizarro, we took the original idea of the Wedding Present--namely, to play songs as fast and for as long as possible--to its logical conclusion. As a result, it's a collection of fairly extreme recordings, and obviously, we've never played them back to back like this before. Rehearsals have been more like training sessions for a marathon, but I have no doubt that we'll get there in the end.

A little clarification: the band are doing the original 10-song UK version of Bizarro, not the 14-track U.S. CD version so don't expect them to play their cover of Pavement's "Box Elder." They are, however, playing about seven songs from throughout the band's career (and a couple new ones) before launching into the album.

White Mystery
White Mystery

Guitar-bass garage rock duos are a dime a dozen, but White Mystery from Chicago stand out and not just because siblings Alex and Francis are flaming redheads. (If they ever need to change their name, may I suggest Firecrotch?) Alex, formerly of Red Orchestra, has a soulful wail that she lets belt out at top register. They're also less blues-y than many of their brethren -- even without the singing nobody's gonna confuse them with The White Stripes, Thee Oh Sees, etc. Their self-titled debut is a lot of fun. And you just know -- you just know -- they're gonna be good live.

White Mystery play Don Pedros on Friday night (4/9) with Girls at Dawn, Medication, Lil Daggers, and The Psyched. They'll also play Cake Shop on Saturday with QXBXRX, Zbornak, and the Richie White Orchestra.

In addition to Serena Maneesh, Here's a few more picks for tonight and Friday...

Continue reading "The Wedding Present, White Mystery, Mon Khmer, ARMS, Zaza, Light Asylum & more in This Week in Indie (part 2) "

by Bill Pearis

DOWNLOAD: Golden Triangle - Jinx (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Golden Triangle - Neon Noose (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: The Sandwitches - Back to the Sea (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Title Tracks - Every Little Bit Hurts (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Pretty & Nice - Tora Tora Tora (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Pretty & Nice - Tora Tora Tora (MP3)
DOWNLOADSummer Cats - Hey You (MP3)
DOWNLOADSummer Cats - Super (MP3)
DOWNLOADSummer Cats - Let's Go (MP3)
DOWNLOADSummer Cats - TV Guide (MP3)

NY Noise

March is consistently one of the most insane months for shows, due to nearly every band being on tour thanks to SXSW. The flood doesn't really kick in till next week, so view this weekend as the relative calm before the storm. Also, before we get into my recommendations, I'd like to mention that New York Noise, the NYC-TV show that has been documenting the local indie scene for eight seasons, is in danger of cancellation. Given it's new Tuesdays at 5AM slot (and its showpage on the website now gone), it almost might as well be off the air -- a worse fate than 120 Minutes ever saw. There are so few outlets to watch music videos on actual television anymore, let alone ones from semi-obscure indie rock bands, and even less done in such consistently clever, funny, fresh ways. (Breakfast at Sulimays was not the first to interview old people about indie rock.)

Music is a huge part of New York City culture and surely the only show on the air about it deserves to continue. If you feel the same way I urge you to sign the Bring Back New York Noise petition. You can read more about it and what's going on with the show over at the Village Voice. And there are some highlights from the show at the bottom of this post.

The Sandwitches
The Sandwitches

Ok, back to the music. San Francisco's The Sandwitches are visiting this weekend for three shows before heading off on a tour that will lead them to Austin for SXSW where they'll play more than a few parties including the BrooklynVegan Thursday day party.

They play the Rockstar Bar tonight (3/5) and then Monster Island on Saturday (3/6) with Golden Triangle.  Singers Heidi and Grace both spent time in The Fresh & Onlys and drummer Roxy used to be in Brilliant Colors. Like Donnie & Marie, they're a little bit country and a little bit rock and roll. In a San Francisco indie sort of way, which means a fair amount of reverb.

Kelley Stoltz says of the Sandwitches: "Imagine a 60's Girl-group is on tour and their van breaks down near a gothic castle high on the hill, Dario Argento invites them in to perform a concert for his tweaked actors in a big dark red room inside and, if the dream is right, it's the Sandwiches - they'd fit right in with those misfits and speak the same language. I'd like to be there to dance." I'm not sure I can top that description. I like their album, How to Make Ambient Sadcake, quite a bit and you can download opening track "Back to the Sea" at the top of this post.

After SXSW they'll play Todd P's MtyMx festival and then tour back to San Francisco with Thee Oh Sees and The Baths.

Golden Triangle
Golden Triangle

That Monster Island show on Saturday is the official record release party for Golden Triangle's debut, Double Jointer, which came out this week on Hardly Art. You can check out two songs from the album at the top of this post. I think you either like this sort of fuzzed out, reverb-soaked garage rock or you don't, but this record is a lot of fun -- a psychedelic art school party band that's part B-52's, part paisley underground, part Cavestomp.

Saturday should be a fun one, with an almost all-girl lineup. In addition to the Sandwitches, there's Girls at Dawn and Coasting, all of whom I like. Golden Triangle are also playing a lot of shows during SXSW including the same Thursday BV show as Sandwitches. All dates are at the bottom of this post.

Title Tracks
Tital Tracks

Playing together two nights this weekend are Washington D.C.'s Title Tracks and Boston's Pretty & Nice. They play Saturday (3/6) at Union Hall and then Sunday (3/8) at Cake Shop.

As mentioned before, Title Tracks is the new band from John Davis, previously of much-loved Q and Not U, and the great but unfortunately shortlived Georgie James. That said, Title Tracks' just-released debut, It Was Easy, is pretty great, full of guitar-centric power pop in a late '70s style that might bring to mind Rockpile, Marshall Crenshaw or the dB's... or more recently Sloan and the New Pornographers. Two songs are at the top of this post. Davis is a fantastic songwriter (and performer) and while we may miss his previous bands, be glad he's still cranking out great tunes.

Pretty & Nice
Pretty and Nice

Pretty & Nice's music tips just the other side of 1980, with slightly nervier pop (XTC and Chris Stamey's songs with the dB's being obvious influences) but just as catchy and their 2008 album, Get Young, didn't get enough attention I don't think. Hopefully they've got a new album out sometime soon and we'll hear songs from it at one of the shows. They're fun live.


And last but in no way least are Australian band Summer Cats who make their NYC debut tonight (3/5) as part of the Mondo! party at Don Hills. They also play Sunday at Bruar Falls. Super-pumped to see these guys live tonight. I wrote loads about them earlier in the week so go read that, won't you? The Bruar Falls show also features local power-poppers Onward Chariots who sound pretty good on their Myspace. I'll be at an Oscar party (I'm bringing Hummus: Based on the Novel Precious by Sapphire) but those who don't care about the Academy Awards should show your support to these Cats. Like most of the bands in this post, they'll be in Austin for SXSW too. And elsewhere. Go see 'em.

That's it for this week. Videos and tour dates are below....

Continue reading "NY Noise, The Sandwitches, Golden Triangle, Title Tracks, Pretty & Nice, Summer Cats & more in This Week in Indie"

by Bill Pearis

DOWNLOAD: Harlem - Friendly Ghost (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Christmas Island - Bed Island (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: North Highlands - Sugar Lips (MP3)

Christmas Island

It's a good week in New York for lovers of no-muss-no-fuss garage rock -- there's a lot of it in town. Austin trio Harlem are playing a trio of shows, the first of which is tonight (2/10) at Mercury Lounge with Girls at Dawn. They then play Friday (2/12) with Frankie & the Outs and The Siberians at Monster Island, and then hit Union Pool on Saturday (2/13) with Jemina Pearl. The band's second album (and first for Matador), Hippies, is out in April and doesn't stray too far from the greasy lo-fi of their debut, but with a bit more, um, finesse. They haven't polished the furniture, just tidied up a bit and the songs don't substitute reverb and distortion, for songwriting chops and attitude. It's a good record.

I'm going to see them tonight Mercury Lounge, but if I had to recommend one of the three shows, Monster Island on Friday seems like the right place to see them with the best and most economical ($7) of the overall line-ups. The Siberians make the kind of garage you would've heard at Cavestomp ten years ago before the genre became cool again -- more Lyres-style organ, less scuzz. Stupid Party are molasses-thick with extra sludge.

The night starts with Blacksburg, VA's Wild Nothing whose dreamy new single, "Summer Holiday," was just released on Captured Tracks. Think a slightly less wimpy Trembling Blue Stars and you're in the general sonic ballpark. Maybe you've already heardhis cover of Kate Bush's "Cloudbusting" that made its way around the internet last year.  I'm pretty sure on record it's just one guy, so what guise Wild Nothing will take live is anybody's guess. And Frankie & the Outs have really come along as a band over the last five months and are coming into their own -- and apparently they've just wrapped up recording their debut album. Hopefully that will be out sooner than later.

Wild Nothing
Wild Nothing

Both Wild Nothing and the Outs will play Monster Island again the next night (2/13) for another great show, this time with Blank Dogs (who haven't played in a while), Sisters and Ireland's So Cow. This will be the first NYC appearance from So Cow since his assault on the U.S. last summer where he charmed nearly everyone who went to see him play.  His new album, Meaningless Friendly, is supposedly out this month though there's no mention of it on the Tic Tac Totally website. Ask him what the hell's up with that at the merch table, won't you? If you can't make it Saturday night, So Cow plays again on Sunday (2/14) at Cake Shop with Vivian Girls/Woods side project The Babies, the Nick Cave-y Preacher and the Knife (who are also playing a fashion show on Friday) and retro doowop stylings of White Blue Yellow and Clouds.  So Cow will be in here for nearly six weeks (including SXSW), playing just about everywhere in North America so do go see him if you can.

Christmas Island
Christmas Island

Monday night at Cake Shop was the kickoff show for Christmas Island Beets Beach Fossils tour which will take them down and up the East Coast over the next ten days. If you missed that show, all three play again on Saturday (2/13) at Death by Audio and then will close the tour on 2/20 at Music Hall of Williamsburg with Crystal Stilts and German Measles (tickets are still on sale for the latter). Matt Volz, who does all the The Beets' artwork, designed a great poster for the tour which you can actually buy via Captured Tracks website and at the merch table on this tour (and is given a CT release number a la Factory Records). You can see a big version of it here.

I've written plenty about Beach Fossils and The Beets before and both bands play here often, they live here, so the real draw here is San Diego's Christmas Island. Their album from last year, Blackout Summer, didn't get much attention but is well worth checking out. You can download a track from it at the top of this post. Not unlike fellow Californians Nodzzz, Christmas Island make somewhat surfy, definitely nasally/nerdy indie rock that at times reminds me of the Dead Milkmen (when Joe Jack Talcum sang).  They were good when I saw them at SXSW last year and look forward to seeing them again on Friday. All tour dates are at the bottom of this post.

North Highlands
North Highlands

Tomorrow (2/11) is the  second of Savoir Adore's three Thursdays in February residency at Cake Shop and I've got another pair of tickets to give away. Just email BVCONTESTS@HOTMAIL.COM with "Savoir Adore" in the subject and I'll pick a winner at random. Openers this week are really good. Both CYHSY/Savoir Adore side project Uninhabitable Mansions and We Are Country Mice have been written about by me before, but I'll like to highlight Brooklyn band North Highlands who make rather lovely piano-driven orch pop. Singer Brenda Malvani has one of those airy but strong voices that seems to have dictated the sound of the band, it all just goes down so well together. They're good live too. You can download title track from their Sugar Lips EP at the top of this post. In between bands this week, Pat from Pop Tarts Suck Toasted (a victim of this week's nasty "Music Blogocide 2K10") will spin tunes. Should be a great night.

A couple more. The Obits anniversary shows are at Cake Shop Friday and Saturday night. Sure to be awesome.

And finally don't forget about Diamond Nights and Cheeseburger (with guest vocalists) this Saturday (2/13) at Brooklyn Bowl. If ever there were two bands to see at a bowling alley, it's these two. The Coco66 show Diamond Nights were originally booked to play on Friday isn't happening so this may be your only chance ever to see them rock it again, as the band has been defunct for over two years. They definitely went before their time. Really looking forward to this one.

That's it for this week. Flyers and tour dates below.

Continue reading "Wild Nothing, So Cow, Obits, North Highlands, Christmas Island, Harlem, Diamond Nights & more in This Week in Indie "

Darius Jones @ New Languages Fest in Sept (more by Andrew Frisicano)
Darius Jones

tonight in NYC
* Whiplash @ UCB Theatre
* Chicha Libre @ Barbes
* Darius Jones Trio @ Roulette
* Rev. Vince Anderson @ Union Pool
* Penny Arcade & Debbie Harty @ Le Poisson Rouge
* Jim Campilongo Electric Trio @ The Living Room
* Les Paul Guitar Tribute w/ Zakk Wylde @ Iridium
* Cheap Trick, Jason Falkner, Roger Joseph Manning Jr @ Irving Plaza
* Girls At Dawn, Bottle Up & Go, No Place, Shining Twins @ Studio @ Webster Hall
* Haiti Benefit w/ Vienna Teng, Amber Rubarth, Ari Hest, Alex Berger, Nate Campany, more @ City Winery

Saxist and composer Darius Jones brings a different band to Roulette for three straight nights. Tonight it's a trio, Tuesday it's a quartet and Wednesday his quintet adds two singers.

Tonight @ LPR: "Penny Arcade: Bad Reputation Book Launch and Performance Gala w/ Debbie Harry and special guests, erotic dancers, performances, music, booze and books!"

James Blackshaw is one of the artists playing LPR on Tuesday.

Beach House play a record release show for their new Teen Dream tomorrow at The Bell House. They played Jimmy Fallon last week, video below.

Of Montreal and James Husband kick off a tour tonight that stops by Highline Ballroom tomorrow.

Friday night was Conan O'Brien's final show on NBC. You can watch it in its entirety below...

What else?

Continue reading "What's going on Monday?"

words by Andrew Frisicano, photos by Jake Forney


Apart from a few deviations, Fucked Up succeeded in performing their 2008 album The Chemistry of Common Life in full and in sequence at the Brooklyn Masonic Temple on Thursday, November 5th. The program even found room for the record's hazy instrumentals "Golden Seal" and "Looking for God," both of which featured guest keyboardist Andrew W.K. On the latter, one of the last songs of the night, W.K. was noodley and playful, tacking pointy chords to the song's building progression.

Vivian Girls were another of the night's guests. They added eerie siren-like back ups to "Crooked Head" and "No Epiphany," as they do (with Frankie Rose who was playing her own show across town) on the recorded version.

Another album guest, Katie Stelmanis, who stole the show with her band's unique opening set, dueted with Pink Eyes on the apocalyptic slow-builder "Royal Swan." Her operatic voice tangled with the burly singer's cryptic proclamations. Andrew W.K. was there too, and led the way with an introductory piano figure, cued with a huge wink by guitarist Ben Cook. The epic took minutes to unfold, and it was one of the night's rarer moments.

The pacing of the album did need some energy injected at times - that came in the form of "Crusades," which the band inserted after "Black Albino Bones" (dedicated to "anyone who collects records"). "Peaceable Kingdom," a ChemCom bonus track almost never performed live, was uneventful, until Pink Eyes decided to join the night's many stagedivers (many annoying and wasted) by falling into the crowd and writhing on the ground for a while.

For the encore, the band treated the crowd to "David Comes to Life" and a full-guest version of "Louie Louie." There was no "Party Hard" as requested many times, and that was for the best. Titus Andronicus hinted at that song by jamming on its opening riff while setting up. They played tightly-packed opening set, which had one brief lull. "I thought it was okay after one string broke, but now I'm down to four..." said singer/guitarist Patrick Stickles before grabbing a seafoam green guitar backstage. "I hope the very nice lady in the first band doesn't mind."

That would be the guitarist for Katie Stelmanis, who joined the singer and a percussionist (also on marimba) to perform gothy pop with a booming, crisp sound. On stage, Stlemanis projected a world of drama with the subtlest gesture. The following act, The Girls at Dawn, did off the cuff, girl-group-inspired punk. Their front-woman (girl) was covered in fake blood.

Pink Eyes stuck around until the last fan got his 7-inch signed and a shirtless hug. More pictures from the show below...

Continue reading "Fucked Up performed an album w/ Vivian Girls, Andrew WK, Titus Andronicus, Katie Stelmanis & The Girls at Dawn @ Brooklyn Masonic Temple - pics & review"

"RT @EducatingEric: It needs to be Thursday already so I can see Fucked Up with @AndrewWK on keyboards and @Viviangirls" -AndrewWK

Fucked Up & friend @ 'Pool Party' in July (more by Bao Nguyen)
Fucked Up

Fucked Up are playing the entirety of their 2008 record Chemistry of Common Life at Brooklyn Masonic Temple on Thursday, November 5th. The 52-minute-and-20-second work will feature additional accompaniment by guests that include Andrew W.K., Vivian Girls and opener Katie Stelmanis. Also opening the show will be Titus Andronicus (who've been busy lately) and Brooklyn's The Girls at Dawn. Tickets are still on sale.

We also have a pair of tickets to give away, along with a copy of Chemistry of Common Life on LP and a Titus Andronicus limited Live in London 12" LP. Details are below.

On January 26th, Matador will be releasing a compilation of rare Fucked Up singles and b-sides called Couple Tracks. The comprehensive breakdown of the double-CD/double-LP is posted below.

Katie Stelmanis, a fellow Torontonian who's collaborated with Fucked Up before, just opened for Tegan and Sara at both of their Town Hall shows (Oct. 30th & 31st). At the gigs, she filled out the one-woman-show with a drummer and guitarist backing her up. A clip of her playing "Believe Me" at the first Town Hall show is below.

After the Brooklyn show, Fucked Up will be playing Fun Fun Fun Fest in Austin on November 7th.

Contest details, show flyer and Couple Tracks info and tracklist are all below...

Continue reading "Fucked Up releasing rarities, playing album show Thurs w/ Katie Stelmanis who opened for Tegan & Sara -- WIN STUFF"

by Bill Pearis

DOWNLOAD: Diehard - Karaoke King (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Small Black - Despicable Dogs (MP3)

Free Energy
Free Energy

Philadelphia's nostalgic party rockers Free Energy are playing The Bell House next Tuesday (11/10). This is the band's first NYC show since a pretty successful CMJ run:

This group's laser-guided desire to be the go-to Dazed and Confused house band makes their ultimate intent curious. Considering the caveman riffs, boogie bass, and lyrics like, "you can do what you want to do," the question is: Are these guys kidding? The answer is (basically), "no."

Because when Sprangers sings, "you can do what you want to do," or, "never give up," or even, "bang pop pop," he means it-- possibly more than a grown man should. So this is seriously fun music, the type of thing Weezer have attempted for the last few years except not as creepy or cloying. [Pitchfork]

After the Bell House show, Free Energy are hitting the road for a string of South West dates that were supposed to be with UK band The Rakes who instead decided to break up instead. (They announced it during CMJ, which somewhat explains why we're only mentioning it now.) The Rakes will be missed, but here's hoping singer Alan Donahoe finds a new band soon. He'll need to do something with that nervous energy. The affected NYC date is November 12th at Highline Ballroom ("refunds available at all points of purchase").

Free Energy are also playing Santos Party House on November 28 with Glint opening.

Back to the Bell House show though. Also playing are another band who had a good CMJ, Brooklyn's Small Black. While they seem a little more song-based than most of the bands lumped in with this chillwave/glo-fi thing, there is a Washed Out remix of their (very good) current single "Despicable Dogs" So let's just lump them in there too and make it easy on ourselves for now. Unlike Washed Out though, Small Black have already figured out how to make their live show interesting. So if you missed them during CMJ, here's another chance. They play Market Hotel on November 7th too, with Pictureplane, Cale Parks, Grass Widow, and The Girls at Dawn. All dates below.

Also on the Bell House line-up are relatively new band Diehard who seem to be actively channeling mid-'90s American indie rock like Superchunk, Archers of Loaf and Pavement, and they do it very well. Check out their song "Karaoke King" at the top of this post, and if you like that they've got two more downloadable MP3s at their website.

Live videos of Free Energy and Small Black from CMJ, plus all tour dates are below.

Continue reading "Free Energy tour dates without the Rakes who broke up, a show w/ Small Black who play Brooklyn w/ Pictureplane too"

Woodsist pic by Tim Griffin, CMJ pics by Ryan Muir (for Metromix)


July 2009 - Dum Dum Girls @ Woodsist Fest in Brooklyn (more by Tim Griffin)
Dum Dum Girls


October 2009 - Dum Dum Girls @ AAM CMJ party in Brooklyn
The Dum Dum Girls

"Dum Dum Girls = West coast Vivian Girls with a tighter beat, black mini-dresses & lacey tights. Total girl-crush." So Melena Ryzik posted to Twitter Saturday night from the Mercury Lounge as I looked over her shoulder.

Totally true, of course. The tights, in particular.

Dum Dum Girls, from Los Angeles, is the project of singer Kristin Gundred, who goes here by Dee Dee, and who sings tart lyrics in a sweet tone buried beneath layers of haze. She has a knack for flawless song construction, her rigor dating somewhere to the late 1950s. And unlike the Vivian Girls, who manage to muster a slight optimism with a similar toolbox, Dum Dum Girls never appear happy, almost gothically gloomy. "Blissed out buzzsaw" is the descriptor on the group's MySpace page.
[Jon Caramanica @ The NY Times]

That NY Times blurb refers to the Dum Dum Girls' not-full Saturday night Mercury Lounge show. It was the Sub Pop / Hardly Art showcase and they were 2nd on the 8-band bill. The tights picture is from their not-full (private) AAM party they played at Music Hall of Williamsburg earlier that day (10/24). More pics from that below.

According to their MySpace, the Sub Pop-signed band's full member list is Dee Dee, Jules, Frankie Rose, and Bambi. And though I'm pretty sure Frankie will continue to play with the band for their upcoming short tour with King Khan and BBQ (including at Bowery Ballroom and The Bell House), and at their Monday (10/26) Brooklyn show at Bruar Falls (with The Girls at Dawn), it is unclear if Frankie will continue with them after that. As you can see above, the band has already gone through one major change since their first-ever show at the Woodsist Festival, and Frankie (ex-Vivian Girl, ex-Crystal Stilt) may be looking to just focus on her own new band (who play the Woodser on November 7th).

More AAM party pics and all Dum Dum Girls dates below...

Continue reading "Dum Dum Girls played CMJ - all girls, all in black (pics) ++ playing Bruar Falls Monday before King Khan & BBQ tour"

by Bill Pearis

DOWNLOAD: The Fresh & Onlys - Dude's Got a Tender Heart (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: The Fresh & Onlys - Invisible Forces (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Blue Jungle - Here We Go Again (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Valleys - Silent Woods (MP3)

Thee Oh Sees @ 2009 Siren Fest (more by Chris La Putt)
Thee Oh Sees

Why oh why are there so many shows I want to see all happening on the same night? Tonight is jam-packed. Top of my list is the return of San Francisco's Thee Oh Sees and The Fresh & Onlys who play tonight (10/8) at Mercury Lounge and tomorrow (10/9) at the Bell House. Thee Oh Sees also play Maxwell's on Saturday (10/10) without the F&Os (but with Pierced Arrows).

Both last played NYC together at the Woodsist / Captured Tracks Festival on July 4. They also both just released their second of two albums this year, and weirdly enough, The Fresh & Onlys' Grey Eyed Girls is on Woodsist, and Thee Oh Sees' Dog Poison is on Captured Tracks. (More crossover trivia: Captured Tracks' honcho Mike Sniper did the art for Grey Eyed Girls.) I like both albums a lot. Grey Eyed Girls is darker than the F&O's self-titled album from the spring, at times (like on "Invisible Forces" which is downloadable above) a bit like early Echo & the Bunnymen. Elsewhere it's pretty and sweet ("Dude's Got a Tender Heart," also downloadable). The new Oh Sees album is rather different for John Dwyer and company, trading sonic assault for acoustic guitars and the occasional flute. It's still perfect beach music, but this is more sundown than shooting the curl. In addition to new albums, both have released something like 23 new 7"s between them since the summer, so look out for all that stuff at the merch table.

Both bands really bring it live. John Dwyer beats the crap out of his guitars, while shoving his microphone all the mouth for maximum distortion. His eyes bug out a little. The dude gives 110%. If that were possible. And The Fresh & Onlys are great too, though I hear singer Tim Cohen's wrist is still in a cast (bassist Shayde Sartin shoved him down some stairs during some spirited horseplay) so he'll be on keyboard duty, but they managed to whip up a storm back in July -- none of the band seem to be able to stand still.

The Girls at Dawn
Girls at Dawn

Opening bands are worth seeing too. At Mercury Lounge, it's Toronto's Still Life Still, who also opened for Kurt Vile at the same venue last night, as well as locals The Girls at Dawn. The latter are an all-girl trio who draw influence from both Phil Spector and C-86, and if that sounds like something you're heard before (Brilliant Colors, Liechtenstein, a certain other bunch of Brooklynites), I'll say Girls at Dawn do it pretty well and manage to carve out their own little corner of a crowded market. I like what's on their MySpace and tonight's show is a record release party for their debut 7" on HoZac, and they'll soon have records out on Tic Tac Totally and Captured Tracks, so expect to hear their name (and their music) more often in the coming months.

At the Bell House, Fresh & Onlys are on first, and then it's the wild world of Golden Triangle whose debut album is due out early next year on Hardly Art (whose CMJ showcase they're also playing). Their live performances are usually pretty fun, ranging from the somewhat chaotic to completely out of control, but I'd say it'll be the former given your average Bell House crowd. But then again, this may not be your average Bell House crowd.

All dates and flyers below...

Continue reading "The Fresh & Onlys and Thee Oh Sees are touring & in NYC -- The Girls at Dawn play Mercury Lounge + other show dates "