Entries tagged with: The Pains of Being Pure at Heart

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DOWNLOAD: The National - Afraid of Everyone (newest MP3)
DOWNLOAD: The National - Bloodbuzz Ohio (new MP3)

Other Music

Record Store Day is fast approaching and we're looking to make this year the best one yet. If you're in NYC on Saturday, April 17, swing by Other Music where we'll be offering lots of special and exclusive Record Store Day releases in the shop, with a great line-up of guest DJs spinning their favorite tunes throughout the day (including Scott from the National and Liquid Liquid's Sal Principato), plus live performances from the Drums and the Pains of Being Pure at Heart. We'll be announcing more details here and on our website in the coming week. And no matter what town you're in, save the date and please support your local independent record stores on Saturday, April 17.
It's the only scheduled US date for the Drums, who go to Europe this May and June. For The Pains of Being Pure at Heart, the in-store their only NYC date currently (their upcoming tour with Surfer Blood and Holiday Shores in June doesn't have one yet).

One of the DJs at Other Music will be the National's Scott Devendorf. Brassland Records (co-started by the National) reports that the store will be one of two (Soundfix being the other) to carry the National's second album, Sad Songs for Dirty Lovers, on vinyl for the "1st time in 7 years.!"

The National's new LP, High Violet, is out May 11th on 4AD, and they've been steadily offering up songs from it. The new "Afraid of Everyone," which features Sufjan on backup vox, is available above as is the previously leaked "Bloodbuzz Ohio."

More Record Store Day coverage is on the way today. On a non-RSD note, Phosphorescent has an in-store at Other Music on May 10th.

Videos of two more new National songs, done live at Big Ears 2010, are posted below with (UPDATE: the Other Music schedule)...

Continue reading "Other Music's Record Store Day plans, the Drums & TPOBPAH instores, new (MP3, video) & old (vinyl) National (who DJ too)"

by Dominick Mastrangelo

The Pains of Being Pure at Heart

SXSW Day Three started over at the free Dickies Sounds Day Party. Free silk-screened posters with all the bands playing that day (including She & Him and Surfer Blood at the official showcase that night) were printed up and handed out on the spot. People played ping pong next to the house while around the corner Greg Laswell played a few new songs, several old ones, as well as his incredibly depressing take on Cyndi Lauper's "Girl's Just Wanna Have Fun". After a quick dash over to the convention center it was back to Dickies, where there was suddenly a long line, to catch the all-girl quartet, Warpaint, who were fantastic. Then Rogue Wave closed out the day portion. I still can't get excited about their new record, but live Zach Rogue and his newly configured lineup have it down and the crowd we're into it from the start. The highlight being "Lake Michigan" and a slow-building, two-minute intro.

For the evening I set up camp at the Mohawk for the Slumberland/Cake Shop Showcase. Sheffield's indiepop trio Standard Fare opened inside and their performance was great. A better batch of indie pop songs you'll be hard-pressed to find this year. Philadelphia drum-guitar duo Reading Rainbow were next and another indie pop band, the excellent Summer Cats (from Australia), followed. Frankie Rose and the Outs were up next with their hazy, lo-fi rock. I skipped out after that to nip over to the Galaxy Backyard to catch The Antlers (completely forgetting I would see them the following afternoon at another Party.) Their third show of the festival and they just nailed it. People around me who had not heard of them were won over after just one song (the increasingly uptempo "Sylvia".) By the end, one girl put her hands up in the shape of a heart right in front of Peter Silberman, eliciting a smile from the frontman mid-verse. From there it was a quick dash back up Red River to the Mohawk where both inside and outside were at capacity with Miike Snow about to go on outside (followed by Mayer Hawthorne, neither of who I caught) and Pains of Being Pure at Heart inside. "Welcome to the Cake Shop," said Kip Berman at the start of the New York indie pop band's set, pointing at the Cake Shop banner on the wall behind them.

Day One HERE. Day Two HERE. Day Three continued below....

Continue reading "SXSW 2010 day 3 in pics & review (Pains of Being Pure of Heart, Rogue Wave, Antlers, Cake Shop, Warpaint, more) "

photos by Joseph Xu

The National

Happy Holidays! I take on more than I can handle. That results in a lot of unposted content. In the name of catching up, while also taking it easy during this final week of the year, here's some of that lost material.

More pictures from the 2009 Pitchfork Music Festival, below...

Continue reading "pictures from the 2009 Pitchfork Festival "

by Bill Pearis

DOWNLOAD: The Pains of Being Pure at Heart - Come Saturday (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: The Pains of Being Pure at Heart - Young Adult Friction (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: The Pains of Being Pure at Heart - Everything with You (MP3)

Pains of Being Pure at Heart

It's not entirely uncommon, especially these days, for a band to go from playing Cake Shop to headlining Webster Hall in little over a year, but one of the amazing surprises of 2009 is that it happened to The Pains of Being Pure at Heart. Made entirely of genuine indie obsessives who, when not on tour are at other people's shows, the Pains moved beyond the cardigan crowd to what you could almost call... mainstream success? It doesn't hurt that their self-titled debut was chock-full of irresistible pop songs, three of which were actual singles (all downloadable at the top of this post), and the rest could've been. The band rest up until February when they tour Japan, Australia and New Zealand -- tour dates are at the bottom of this post. Singer Kip Berman answered our year-end in questionnaire...

Continue reading "an end of 2009 interview w/ The Pains of Being Pure at Heart"

Insound Design Store

Starting December 17th, Insound, the online indie super-store, known for its impeccable selection of vinyl and well designed music merch and gifts, will open a unique holiday pop-up gallery at 303 Grand St. in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. The gallery will be selling the best designed music gifts from Insound's inventory, including silk-screened, limited edition posters, t-shirts, deluxe LP box sets, art books about music, turntables and unusual audio gear and music gifts.

In a neighborhood filled with great small record stores, Insound will not be selling standard LPs or CDs at the pop up gallery. Instead, the company's staff has curated the space with the intention of showcasing products that express the very best product design and quality applied to a love of music.

Additionally, every night from 7-10pm, in conjunction with The Fader, the gallery will host special live music events featuring surprise guest DJs and complimentary cocktails.

DJing the first night (tonight, 12/17) will be Brooklyn's own Small Black. The full schedule and a flyer are below...

Continue reading "Insound Design Store in Williamsburg (Dec 17th-21st)"

photos by Tim Griffin, words by Bill Pearis

Amy Linton
Henry's Dress

Frankie Rose
Frankie Rose

Influential indie label Slumberland Records turned 20 in 2009 and celebrated this landmark with two big birthday shows -- one in Washington DC (where it got its start) and one in Brooklyn (where much of Slumberland's current roster reside). The Bell House show was a cardigan-clad indie marathon, with a nice mix of Slumberland bands (and fans) old and new. It really did feel like a party. There were favors for the guests (a Slumberland rarities compilation CD) and even a few surprises. Slumberland head honcho Mike Schulman joined Philadelphia's Brown Recluse on stage for some well-played tambourine, and Amy Linton, conspicuously absent from the listed proceedings, turned up for an unannounced, too-brief (and crazy loud) set of Henry's Dress and Aislers Set songs with help from Crystal Stilts. There might've even been a cake. With the label going strong, another 20 years doesn't seem entirely out of the question.

Videos (including the entire Henry's Dress/Aislers Set set), plus pictures of all the bands from the whole long, fun night are after the jump....

Continue reading "pics & video from Slumberland's 20th Anniversary party "

by Bill Pearis

DOWNLOAD: The Cribs - We Were Aborted (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: BOAT - Prince of Tacoma (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: BOAT - We've Been Friends Since 1989 (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: BOAT - Lately (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: BOAT - I'm a Donkey for Your Love (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: BOAT - Last Cans of Paint (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Pants Yell! - Cold Hands (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Frankie Rose - Thee Only One (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Brown Recluse - Night Train (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Brown Recluse - Contour and Context (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: The Ropers - Revolver (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Nord Express - The Natural (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Lorelei - Stale Houses (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Max Tundra - Which Song (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Deastro - Reaction To Substance M (MP3)

Tonight (11/11) and tomorrow are the last two shows of The Answering Machine's extended NYC visit, playing Bruar Falls tonight (with Dinnosaur Feathers and Zambri) and Cake Shop tomorrow (11/12, with Sholi). As I've said before, this Manchester band make superior Brit Indie and like their debut album, Another City, Another Sorry, quite a bit. You can get the whole thing at their bandcamp.com page.

The Cribs
The Cribs

Speaking of superior Brit Indie, The Cribs fourth album, Ignore the Ignorant, was released this week, just in time for their shows at Bowery Ballroom on Thursday (11/12, still tickets available) and Friday (11/13, sold out). As you may know, The Cribs are now a four-piece, having added Johnny Marr to their otherwise all-Jarman lineup for the writing and recording of the new album which actually does sound like what you might expect it to. You've still got the big choruses and raw energy The Cribs are known for, but now with the flourishes and panache the onetime Smith is known for. I'd even say Ignore the Ignorant finds Johnny Marr sounding like Johhny Marr for the first time since his days in The The. It's a really strong record. But The Cribs are almost always better live than on record. I will be curious to see how Marr will affect the usual antics of Gary, Ryan, Ross. Will brothers still act like brothers when there's a legend nearly twice their age on stage?

Boat

The shows I'm most looking forward to this weekend are from Seattle's BOAT, a truly fun live band whose new album, Setting the Paces, is just terrific, loaded with irresistible indie pop, as much as you can fit on tangerine-colored vinyl. We're talking giant hooks, lyrics that are funny without being novelty (and have just enough of the crying-on-the-inside clown thing going on too), and production that is neither slick nor low fi. This is how it's done, and I've no doubt this will find its way into my Best of 2009 list.

BOAT play Union Hall on Friday (11/13) and Bruar Falls on Saturday (11/14) and you really should do yourself a favor and go see one of these shows. They don't make it East very often. Their live shows are fairly interactive -- they pass out bags of confetti and homemade shakers, and often work with signs and props -- but it never feels forced. They just want you to have a good time. The Union Hall show on Friday is with How I Became the Bomb; Saturday's Bruar Falls show is with Miniboone and Shark?

Pants Yell!
Pants Yell

I feel a little bad that BOAT's show on Saturday is competing with the Slumberland 20th Anniversary show at The Bell House for the indie pop consumer's dollar. As someone who spent his college years going on road trips to Washington DC to see shows and go record shopping, Slumberland is intertwined with my musical upbringing, be it thumbing through Velocity Girl, Henry's Dress and Aislers Set 7"s at Arlington's Go Records, or hearing Stereolab's Switched On for the first time at Smash on M Street.

It's kind of amazing that, after a few years of dormancy, Slumberland has come back stronger than ever in the last year with records that have achieved a national level of attention that seemed impossible in the '90s. I'm still stunned at how popular Pains of Being Pure at Heart have gotten. It's a label that continues to be a labor of love for owner Mike Schulman. Maybe the listening public (now with the wide-reaching abilities of the internet) has come around to his way of thinking.

Anyway, Saturday's eight-band spectacular is a hard-t0-pass-up bill for any indie fan, featuring label heavy hitters The Pains of Being Pure at Heart (previously unannounced) and Crystal Stilts. There's also Boston's Pants Yell!, whose new album Received Pronunciation was just released and is what I'd call a textbook "grower," one whose many pleasures don't reveal themselves till maybe the third listen. The band are also swearing it's their last, and plan to break up next year (Check out an MP3 of "Cold Hands" above). Additionally, the show has Philadelphia's baroque-ish Brown Recluse from the label's current roster, and what is likely to be most people's first time seeing Frankie & the Outs, who were really good opening for Grass Widow at the Woodser a week ago.

There's also sets from three bands from Slumberland's dreamy '90s era: Lorelei, who have been back together since 2003, and The Ropers, and Nord Express who I'm pretty sure are playing their first shows since disbanding. While I know some Slumberland fanatics were hoping, wishing, crossing their fingers Schulman and Bell House booker Skippy might pull a rabbit out of their hat with more classic Slumberland bands (The Aislers Set, Black Tambourine, Velocity Girl or Rocketship), it's hard to argue with this lineup. It's gonna be a great night.

Versus
Versus

While on the subject of '90s indie rock, Versus are playing at Knitting Factory on Friday (11/13). Now augmented with a violinist (at least at their fantastic Seaport set this summer), they're sounding as good as they did in the '90s. Maybe even better. I'm told there's a new Versus album in the can and they're just trying to work out the whens and wheres of its release. The whole line-up at the Knit is TeenBeat related actually, with label head (and former Unrest frontman) Mark Robinson's new band Cotton Candy; Plus Minus which features Versus' James Balyut and ex-member Patrick Ramos and who are equally popular in their own right; The Solitary Cyclist which includes John Lindaman of True Love Always, Plus Minus drummer Chris Deaner, and food blogger (and friend of mine) Ganda Suthivarakom who has also performed with Miho Hatori, as well as in David Byrne's Imelda Marcos opera, Here Lies Love. Which leads us to the other band on the bill: Filipino indiepop band Ciudad. They've been playing shows here for the last month or so but this looks to be the final one before they head back to the Philippines.

GhostDigital
GhostDigital

A couple other quick shows of interest. If you ever wondered what became of Einar, the other vocalist in the Sugarcubes (the one who shouted things like "I really don't like lobster!"), his current gig is GhostDigital which matches weird electronics to his particular style of vocals. They play tonight (11/11) at Monkeytown with fellow homemade diode musician Caspar Electronics.

GhostDigital also play on Thursday (11/12) at Town Hall as part of Music For 16 Futurists, which is further described as:

An evening-length concert of original scores and newly commissioned compositions for the intonarumori, or "noise-intoners" As part of its celebration of the 100th anniversary of Italian Futurism, the Performa 09 biennial, in collaboration with the Experimental Media and Performing Arts Center (EMPAC) and SFMOMA, has invited Luciano Chessa to direct a reconstruction project to produce accurate replicas the legendary instruments (8 noise families of 1-3 instruments each, in various registers) that Russolo built in Milan in the summer of 1913. As the first instruments capable of creating and manipulating noises through entirely mechanical processes, the intonarumori can be considered to be the original analog synthesizer, and the ancestors to the latest electronic synthesizers used today.
The night also features Blixa Bargeld, John Butcher, Luciano Chessa, Joan La Barbara, Nick Hallett, Pauline Oliveros, Mike Patton, Anat Pick, Elliott Sharp, Ulrich Krieger, Jennifer Walshe with Tony Conrad, Ghostigital with Skuli Sverrison, Finboggi Petursson, and Casper Electronics.

Sounds pretty cool. Aside: I used to fantasize that Einar formed a band with Fred Schneider. The most annoying band ever created.

OK that's it for this week. Videos and tour dates follow....

Continue reading "The Cribs, BOAT, Slumberland, Pants Yell!, GhostDigital, Versus, Music For 16 Futurists & more in This Week in Indie"

Neko CaseNeko Case

Best of 2009: Top 10 Amazon Picks

1) Neko Case
2) Yeah Yeah Yeahs
3) Phoenix
4) The Pains of Being Pure at Heart
5) The Avett Brothers
6) Girls
7) Animal Collective
8) K'Naan
9) Jay-Z
10) Camera Obscura
Two of Amazon's Top 10 bands are playing shows in NYC tonight (11/6): Girls and Yeah Yeah Yeahs.

I recently noticed that The Pains of Being Pure at Heart were revealed as the headliner of the Slumberland Records 20th Anniversary Festival happening at the Bell House in Brooklyn on November 14th. Tickets are still on sale. Pains will also be making an appearance five days earlier at the same venue to celebrate the same record label, except on November 9th the band will be the DJ for "Monday Night Vinyl Club #13". It's free. More details and all tour dates below...

Continue reading "The Pains of Being Pure at Heart DJing Slumberland Monday Night Vinyl Club, playing Slumberland Festival, other dates"

photos by Jake Forney

DOWNLOAD: The Pains of Being Pure at Heart - Higher Than the Stars (Others in Conversation Mix) (MP3)

Cymbals Eat Guitars / Pains of Being Pure at Heart
Cymbals Eat Guitars
The Pains at Being Pure at Heart

"Pains went on at 9:15 and Webster Hall was packed. I wonder if it sold out? They played a great set, and I finally got to see them play the song that made me a fan of theirs, "A Teenager in Love." But for me, my two favorite songs are "Come Saturday" and "Everything With You." Matt told me that he knows that those are the two songs I like because that's the only time he'll ever see me move. Yeah, at shows I'm pretty dis-affectionate. It seems that Pains get better every time I see them. And on a personal level, it is true that with new music, I really don't like a good 98% of what's out there, but I love Pains and they'll receive my full support. And I'm no one special, but I am blatantly honest. They write such beautiful, sincere, and catchy music, and the members are some of the nicest people I've ever met, and both Kip and Peggy gave me a hug when I ran into them at the show. Aww, you guys are awesome. And interestingly enough, when I got home from the show I had a last.fm friend request from Kip. (we have "very high" compatibility according to last.fm's taste-meter)" [Alex Caprio]
Cymbals Eat Guitars, The Depreciation Guild, and The Pains of Being Pure at Heart played one of the last shows on their tour together in their hometown of NYC, at Webster Hall on Saturday night (10/3). More pictures from the show below...

Continue reading "Cymbals Eat Guitars, Depreciation Guild & The Pains of Being Pure at Heart @ Webster Hall in NYC - pics "

by Bill Pearis

DOWNLOAD: The Pains of Being Pure at Heart - Higher Than the Stars (Others in Conversation Mix) (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Besnard Lakes - And You Lied to Me (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: The Cinnamon Band - Buena Vista (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Princeton - Calypso Gold (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Princeton - Sadie and Andy (feat. Meredith Metcalf (MP3)

The Besnard Lakes
Besnard Lakes

(This Week in Indie Pt 1, in case you missed it.)

North of the border, Pop Montreal 2009 is going on as we speak, yet one of the Canadian city's best bands, The Besnard Lakes, are here in NYC playing a show on Saturday (10/3) at Mercury Lounge. I think they must feel an affinity for New York -- Brooklyn too, as their excellent 2007 album Are The Dark Horse (one of my faves from that year) has a song called "On Bedford and Grand," a tongue-in-cheek ode to Williamsburg. As good as that album is, Besnard Lakes are even better live, though it probably depends on their ever-fluctuating line-up. In addition to scoring actor Mark Ruffalo's directorial debut, the band are working on Dark Horse's follow-up, so it will be good to hear some new material. The show also features Philadelphia duo The Cinnamon Band (2/3s of defunct Jagjaguwar band The Union of a Man and a Woman) and Acrylics who I think are one of the city's best new bands.

We've got a pair of tickets to give away for this 21+ show. If you're interested, send an email with your first and last name to BVCONTESTS@HOTMAIL.COM with the subject line "Besnard Lakes" and we'll pick a winner at random.

Pains of Being Pure at HeartSaturday is a busy night. The Pains of Being Pure at Heart (9pm), who just released a great new EP called Higher Than the Stars, headline Webster Hall (tickets), the penultimate date on their current tour with Cymbals Eat Guitars (7pm) and The Depreciation Guild (8pm). You can download a brand new remix of Higher Than the Stars title track, which strips off the original's sparkly sheen and gives it a rougher, darker coat of paint. The Webster Hall show has an early start with 6pm doors, which will have you out of there by 10pm, in time for a second show of the night if so desired. The band play Philadelphia on Sunday (10/4), then are taking six weeks off before Europe in mid-November. They are also conspicuously absent from either of the upcoming Slumberland Records Anniversary shows.

The Dø
the do

Also also Saturday (that's 10/3 if you forgot), Finland's The Dø wrap up their first-ever American tour with a NYC stop at Hiro Ballroom (tickets). One night earlier (tonight), they play a show at Pop Montreal. Their 2008 album A Mouthful is a schizophrenic mix of indie rock, dreamy folk, tribal rhythms, and even (less successful) forays into hip hop. One woulda thought the band would have been here a year ago, as A Mouthful's hype hit its pinnacle about a year and a half ago, though it still hasn't gotten a proper U.S. release. (You can get it via iTunes or Emusic, though.) The Dø's show in L.A. as part of the Oohlala Festival didn't go so well, apparently, but their show at Chicago's Empty Bottle was a hit according to Popmatters critic (and ace photographer) Kirstie Shanley:

Creating a live performance full of win, French-Finnish duo The Dø could have easily entertained an audience of thousands. Olivia Merilahti was electricity personified. Flipping her long lustrous hair, coming up to the tip on the stage and leaning into the audience were two of her frequent rock moves. Dan Levy chose to engage the audience with his sudden floor kneeling. But despite the sense of developed chemistry between he and Merilahti, it was she who truly stole the show. [Popmatters]
250You've got another chance to catch L.A. band Princeton, who play with Chicago's Maps & Atlases at the new Knitting Factory in Williamsburg on Sunday. Both bands are just now wrapping up a tour supporting Ra Ra Riot. Their debut, Cocoon of Love, is out now and is pretty hard not to like, full of well-dressed scholarly pop not unlike Belle & Sebastian or the Magnetic Fields (or, loathe as I am to admit it, Vampire Weekend, minus the Afrobeat influences). Princeton were to be one the unavoidable bands at this year's CMJ Festival but canceled after being offered an opening slot on Art Brut's upcoming U.S. tour, so this may be the last chance to see them for a while (well, unless you choose the Art Brut show at Maxwell's which is one of the shows they're opening).

And finally, UK legend Frank Sidebottom is visiting NYC again, here ostensibly for the Coney Island Film Festival where he'll debut his film Frank Sidebottom Saves Coney Island. I caught Frank (and his sidekick Little Frank) back in March where he played to confused locals at the 169 Bar, where he first got heckled but eventually won the crowd over with his bizarre, hilarious covers of The Fall, The Smiths, Queen and The Beatles, which includes multiple costume changes. He's playing a bunch of shows throughout the weekend, including two on Sunday (10/4) at Cake Shop and Otto's Shrunken Head. If you're even slightly curious (there are videos below) I recommend you go see him -- there's really nobody else like him.

Videos and tour dates follow...

Continue reading "The Do, Besnard Lakes, Princeton, Pains of Being Pure at Heart & more in This Week in Indie (part 2) "

photos by Lori Baily

Cymbals Eat Guitars @ Brooklyn Bowl

Cymbals Eat Guitars

New York's [Pains of Being Pure at Heart] secured their position as indie-pop darlings earlier this year via their superb self-titled debut album, and are already trekking out in support of another release, the "Higher than the Stars" EP. Manifesting as a quintet (adding another guitar to their usual guitar, keys, bass and drums arrangement), they delivered pensive, breezy, melodious anthems of romantic anxiety such as "This Love Is (expletive) Right," and "Everything With You" with much free-spirited bopping and swaying.

Banter was limited but charming. Pains frontman Kip Berman, himself a former Cambridge resident, made it known that he sympathized with anyone forced to leave early to catch the last train. Attired in what appeared to be an olive colored robe, singer/ keyboardist Peggy Wang announced that her friend was celebrating his bachelor party at the Middle East Downstairs that evening.

Fellow New Yorkers the Depreciation Guild and Cymbals Eat Guitars opened. Performing in front of a video of rapidly flashing, alternating sides of a Rubik's Cube, the Depreciation Guild employed duel guitars and gentle, trebly vocals for hypnotic results. Their shoegazey pop makes for excellent pre-nap-time ambience, which explains why they looked to be on the verge of nodding off.

Cymbals Eat Guitars performed passionately, but always seemed to be cramming four song concepts into one. They could learn a thing or two about the beauty of simplicity from the Pains. [Boston Herald]

That review is from the Cymbals Eat Guitars/POBPAH/Depreciation Guild tour kick off show in Boston on September 5th. Those bands come to NYC's Webster Hall for a show on October 3rd. Tickets are still on sale.

A little more than a week before the Boston show, CEG played Insound's 10 anniversary party at Brooklyn Bowl. Another set of pics from that show, along with info on that new Pains EP, and all tour dates, below...

Continue reading "Pains of Being Pure at Heart (new EP) now on tour w/ Cymbals Eat Guitars (more Brooklyn Bowl pics) "

Monolith Festival

The final lineup for Monolith Festival, which takes place at the Red Rocks Ampitheatre in Morrison, Colorado, on September 12th-13th, is below. The Yeah Yeah Yeahs and Girl Talk headline Saturday night at the festival, and the Mars Volta and MSTRKRFT top the bill on Sunday. Deer Tick, Passion Pit, Doom, The Walkmen, The Thermals, and HEALTH are also some of the bands on the two-day bill.

Tickets and two-day passes are still on sale. We also has a pair of weekend tickets to give away. Details on that, with the full lineup, below...

Continue reading "Monolith Festival - final 2009 lineup ++ WIN a two-day pass"

Pains of Being Pure at Heart @ South Street Seaport 7/10 (more by Tim Griffin)
Pains of Being Pure at Heart

Since their Seaport Music show on July 10th, Pains of Being Pure at Heart have updated their tour schedule to include an NYC show at Webster Hall on October 3rd. Tickets go on AmEx presale Wednesday, July 15th at noon. General sales starts Friday, July 17th at noon.

Pains' tour dates, listed below, take them around North America in September and October. Cymbals Eat Guitars and Depreciation Guild will be joining them on that tour, including the Webster Hall show.

The band also has a short West Coast tour scheduled between their stops at Pitchfork Fest (in Chicago July 18th) and Capitol Hill Block Party (in Seattle July 25th).

Videos from their Seaport show, and a new Pitchfork.TV "Don't Look Down" video with Cymbals Eat Guitars playing on a NYC roof, with all tour dates, below...

Continue reading "Pains of Being Pure at Heart - updated 2009 tour dates (Webster Hall w/ Cymbals Eat Guitars & Depreciation Guild)"

photos by Tim Griffin

The Pains of Being Pure at Heart

Agit Reader: Have you found it difficult to be a band in New York? Given the deluge of music that's here, is it hard to make your mark?

Alex Naidus: We haven't thought of it that way. Other than having to pay for cabs to get to a show, it's fun to be a band in New York. If we started a band with the idea of "making it" then it would be hard, but we just like to play and have fun.

Peggy Wang: In New York, you're lucky because even if you play music that's not trendy or popular, there's still a niche. It's been nice to play a few shows and get momentum where people come see us play. We never had to play Fat Baby, like the last band I was in that had to play there. It's also nice because, while there's so many bands, there's quite a few bands with whom we fit and can play shows. There's always lots of options as far as bands to play with and venues.

Kip Berman: I know there's difficulties with practice space and the logistics of it, but in terms of the scene and culture being supportive of what we do, it's been great. I think of bands that play in other cities that are really good, but don't have other bands to play with and they feel really isolated. Here in New York there's other like-minded people that come to our shows and we go to their shows. It feels like a really good community.

The Pains of Being Pure at Heart (Alex, Peggy and Kip) headlined Friday's free show at the South Street Seaport (a NYC venue, much, much larger than Fat Baby). More pictures from that show below...

Continue reading "The Pains of Being Pure at Heart, Zaza & Ribbons @ South Street Seaport, NYC - pics"

by Bill Pearis

DOWNLOAD: The Pains of Being Pure at Heart - Young Adult Friction (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Japandroids - Young Hearts Spark Fire (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Little Girls - Tambourine (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: The Brunettes - Small Town Crew (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Sharon Van Etten - For You (MP3)

Japandroids
Japandroids

With the weather today in NYC being just about perfect, I imagine the Seaport will be super packed for tonight's show with Pains of Being Pure at Heart (7/10), which will be their biggest hometown show yet. (Jay Reatard may not be there, though.) I don't think a year ago anybody, even those who've loved them from the start, would have thought TPOBPAH would have gotten as big as they have. Their minds have to be kind of blowing, but from what I can tell they're taking it in stride. The band are gearing up for a West Coast tour with Girls (most of TPOPBAH were at Girls' Mercury Lounge show two weeks ago) and then a bigger fall tour with Cymbals Eat Guitars and drummer Kurt's other band, The Depreciation Guild. Kurt has also been known to help out with gothy, atmospheric duo ZAZA who are also on tonight's Seaport Music Festival show.

But what to do after Seaport? Canadian duo (and Pitchfork Best New Music recipients) Japandroids are in town and while Saturday's show at Pianos is sold out, there's still tonight's show at Cameo Gallery in Williamsburg. I'm not 100% sold on the record, though every time a song comes up on shuffle I'm always like "oh who's this?" which makes me more than curious enough to check them out. That loud-and-anthemic quality of their music reminds me both of '80s STT bands like Husker Du or fIREHOSE, and the '90s Halifax scene (Thrush Hermit especially) and I have a feeling Japandroid's live show will put me over into the full-on "yes" category. Tonight's show also features fellow Canadians Little Girls who I wrote about a few weeks ago when they played Littlefield, and local noisemongers Dinowalrus who recently signed to Kanine.

"We just signed to Kanine to put our debut album called "%". it will come out in October.

we already have two 7"s out. one was self-released, the other was a split 7" put out with Bachelor of Arts from Melbourne Australia on EXO (apache beat, slits, japanther)" - Dinowalrus
Cameo's a nice addition to North 6th St, and if you ever find yourself bored by a band there, you can always just stare at the giant hypnotizing psychedelic fiber optic Snuffleupagus head that hangs above the stage.

Japandroids are also playing the Siren Festival next weekend. They go on at 3:00 pm.

Jason Lytle
Jason Lytle

Over at Union Hall, former Grandaddy frontman Jason Lytle plays, supporting his solo debut, Yours Truly, the Commuter. If he'd released it as a Grandaddy record I don't think anyone would've flinched, as it's more of the stoner spacerock about suburban ennui that is Lytle's forte. Maybe it's a little more acoustic based than Grandaddy were, but it's not like he's decided to do anything radically different here. That isn't a criticism per se, as he's really good at it. If you liked Grandaddy, you'll like this. It's a good record. Tonight's show is with The Albertans, who you may remember as one of The L Magazine's 8 NYC Bands You Need to Hear. Jason also plays Bowery Ballroom Saturday (7/11).

The Brunettes
The Brunettes

New Zealand's charming Brunettes have been camped out in New York for a few weeks and I keep meaning to write about them and then I forget. They play tonight (7/10) at The Bell House and if you've never seen them before, here would be a good chance to rectify the situation. They are cute as a button and mix lush, Bacharachian pop and '60s girl group sounds with a bit of New Wave. I guess you could call them the Kiwi Bird and the Bee, but Brunettes have been doing it longer. They are very engaging live (maybe you saw them open for the Ting Tings at Union Hall last year?) and The Bell House seems like a nice place to see them. A new record is due out any time now, and they're heading out on a big North American tour soon, and those dates are at the bottom of this post. Also on the bill: Great Lakes, BV fave Sharon Van Etten and Animal Hands.

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And then of course Sunday is the first of this year's Pool Parties, with what could be the loudest, noisiest of the summer: Mission of Burma, Fucked Up and Ponytail. While I'll miss the decayed allure of the McCarren Pool, the new location at the riverfront park has it's own appeal, and looks to be a pretty spectacular setting. No slip-n-slide I hear, but surely they'll come up with something else cool to replace it. Let's hope. And remember: no hand grenades, Krull stars, or cargo shorts. See you there.

Tour dates, flyers and videos after the jump....

Continue reading "Japandroids, Brunettes, Jason Lytle, TPOBPAH, Little Girls & more in This Week in Indie (part 2) "

Pains of Being Pure at Heart

As pointed out by Stereogum, there's a person who definitely won't be at the Pains of Being Pure at Heart Seaport show tonight.

Brooklyn shut up ! most of your bands all suck and you are total wanna bees ! The pains of being boring at heart ....oh it must hurt being so bland - Jay Reatard on Twitter
Pitchfork also posted the... news, and that's what Jay responded to 6 hours later in a second tweet...

Pains of Being Pure at Heart

Jay played his own outdoor NYC show in Manhattan on July 1st, and a show in Brooklyn the very next day. Did that one not go so well? Video from that show below...

Continue reading "Jay Reatard vs. Brooklyn & The Pains of Being Pure at Heart"

DOWNLOAD: The Pains of Being Pure at Heart - Come Saturday (MP3)

Pains of Being Pure at Heart @ Bell House in March (more by Chris La Putt)
Pains of Being Pure at Heart

The Pains of Being Pure at Heart headline a free show at South Street Seaport in NYC tonight (7/10). Zaza and Ribbons open. Zaza member Danny Taylor has done production work for Pains. Zaza member Jennifer Fraser used to be in The Warlocks. Ribbons, like Zaza, is a Brooklyn based duo - not to be confused with Ribbons aka 'jherek bischoff' who has played in XIU XIU, The Dead Science and Parenthetical Girls.

Last week the Seaport Music series kicked off with a July 3rd Here We Go Magic and Bachelorette show.

All Pains of Being Pure at Heart tour dates, below...

Continue reading "Pains of Being Pure at Heart - 2009 Tour Dates (FREE SHOW @ SOUTH STREET SEAPORT TONIGHT w/ Zaza & Ribbons) "

by Bill Pearis

DOWNLOAD: Amazing Baby - Smoke Bros (MP3)

Amazing Baby
Amazing Baby

"I actually miss the days when you just wrote about Amazing Baby in eeevery post." - BV commenter Eric Serpa | June 4, 2009 4:59 PM
This one's for you, dude. Yes it has been a while since Amazing Baby have graced this column which started almost exactly a year ago and were featured in my inaugural post. Since then, the band have gone through a few line-up changes, expanded, contracted, and toured Europe a couple times (once with buddies MGMT). The band open for Phoenix at Terminal 5 this Friday (6/19) and will release their debut album, Rewild, on Tuesday, June 23. (It's out now on iTunes.) Few are more aware than me that a lot of people seem to dislike this band, though I think most of that comes from the company they keep and their image more than the music itself.

Do they have questionable taste when it comes to fashion, their album covers and music videos? Maybe, but I don't think you can accuse Amazing Baby of the same, musically, or jumping on any bandwagons. Rewild is psychedelic without being being retro, danceable at times, heavy, glammy, catchy as hell and full of inventive arrangements and production. It rocks and swoons and sounds great loud. And they don't sound like any single other band out there. You can download "Smoke Bros" (which reminds me of Shriekback a little bit) at the top of this post. And you can stream the whole album at their MySpace.

Lightspeed Champion

Still reading? Phoenix's openers at tomorrow's (6/18) Music Hall of Williamsburg is Lightspeed Champion. That show is beyond sold-out, but tonight (6/17), he's playing a warm up show at Mercury Lounge, which will be his first in a long time. Dev has become a Brooklyn resident in the last year, which is where he also recorded his still-untitled second solo album (due in Oct.) with help from the Spacecamp boys who will also be his backing band at both shows. As a fan of last year's underrated Falling Off the Lavendar Bridge, I'm anxious to hear Dev's new material. Tickets are still available.

Spacecamp are also playing a set of their own at Mercury Lounge, opening the night, though you'd think it would've made more sense for them to play next-to-last and just have Dev come out and join them for a seamless transition, but I am a blogger not a stage manager. The band now have a full-time keyboardist in the mix which has made them a bit funkier (clavinet tends to do that). You can can get an idea of that in the footage Joly shot from Spacecamp's Annex show two weeks ago (below). In between Spacecamp and Lightspeed are Apache Beat and New Orleans' Hurray for the Riff Raff.

Nobunny
Nobunny

The show I'm most looking forward to this week, though, is this Friday (6/19) at Bruar Falls: Nobunny, Hunx and His Punx, German Measels, Baby Shakes and The Beets. I wrote about Nobunny the last time he was through town, having just caught him at SXSW, and his shows are fun and creepy all at the same time. (It's that mask.) If you haven't heard his debut, Love Visions, it's a lot of fun if you like bare-bones Ramones style punky pop. He recently put out a cassette-only album, Raw Romance, of demos and outtakes that was also pretty good -- it's sold out but maybe he'll have copies on tour with him. Nobunny also plays an all-ages show at Death by Audio two nights later (6/21).

Hunx

The whole evening at Bruar Falls sounds like fun. Hunx and His Punx look and sound like they lept out of a John Waters movie and judging by their music videos I can only hope they bring that level of camp to their live show. Hunx has a new single out, "Teardrops on My Telephone," on Jay Reatard's Shattered label (also home to Nobunny). You can see the video for that song below. Hunx is playing a bunch of shows and parties this week, and all his dates are at the bottom of this post.

Also: the girl group punk of Baby Shakes; German Measels' fake mustache pop; and The Beets who seem to play every four days but I've enjoyed every show I've seen of theirs (including two previous at Bruar Falls).

Other shows of note: there's a TWII-approved line-up at Glasslands on tonight (6/17): Sisters, My Teenage Stride, and Knight School. All the bands are good, but if you haven't seen Sisters yet, you should really rectify that as soon as possible. On of my all time favorite new local bands of the moment.

Crocodiles are back in town, playing Union Pool on Thursday (6/18) and Mercury Lounge on Saturday (6/20). I don't care what Pitchfork says, I think their album is pretty good and they were fun at Pianos earlier this year.

And it wouldn't be a proper TWII column without mentioning this year's Twee as Fuck party at Cake Shop. TaF is a monthy party in London, as well as a fanzine and label, and they bring it over here in June. I went to last year's moderately-attended event which featured Afternoon Naps, Bears, and Pains at Being Pure at Heart who are headlining again this year though it's an understatement to say that things have changed for them. Not that they don't totally deserve it, but it still boggles my mind that the Pains have become a big as they have. TPOBPAH just announced a fall tour and those dates are below. Their next NYC show after Cake Shop is at South Street Seaport (home of tonight's Jon Spencer Blues Explosion Show).

With a lineup that also includes their Slumberland labelmates Crystal Stilts and Cause Co-Motion, as well as London's Hatcham Social, this is gonna be one super-packed, sweaty night at Cake Shop. Advance tickets are sold out, but there are a few available at the door if you get there early. Doors are at 7pm.

That's it for this week. Flyers, videos, and tour dates are after the jump....

Continue reading "Amazing Baby, Nobunny, Hunx & His Punx, Lightspeed Champion, TPOBPAH & more in This Week In Indie "

by Bill Pearis

DOWNLOAD: Hatcham Social - So So Happy Making (MP3)

Hatcham Social

London's Hatcham Social are direct musical descendants of Orange Juice, Echo & the Bunnymen or, more recently, Clearlake: scratchy but melodic, with an occasional flair for the melodramatic, and very, very British. In the UK, they're signed to Fierce Panda, the label that first gave us Art Brut and, um, Coldplay; in the U.S they're with TBD Records, home of White Rabbits and Radiohead. Hatcham Social's long-time-coming debut, You Dig The Tunnel, I'll Hide The Soil, was co-produced by Tim Burgess of the Charlatans with whom they'll be touring this fall.

Before that, they'll be playing a handful of choice NYC shows over the next week or so, including Thursday's (6/18) Twee As Fuck party at Cake Shop that also features most of Slumberland's current roster: The Pains of Being Pure at Heart, Crystal Stilts, and Cause Co-Motion. Tickets ($10) to that show, by the way, can be bought in advance at either Cake Shop or Bruar Falls daily from noon to 10PM. Please note: "ONLY 200 TIX AVAILABLE!" Um... 200 people can fit in Cake Shop? UPDATE: Sold out, but tickets will be available at the door. Go early if you don't already have a ticket and want to get in.

Additionally, Hatcham Social are playing Mondo @ Don Hill's this Friday (6/19), and two dates with The Maccabees and Miike Snow: Saturday (6/20) at Music Hall of Williamsburg and Monday (6/22) at Mercury Lounge.

Check out the MP3 of "So So Happy Making" above, and there are videos, flyers and tour dates after the jump.

Continue reading "Hatcham Social - MP3 & 4 NYC shows including Cake Shop w/ Crystal Stilts & TPOBPAH, Merc/MHOW w/ Maccabees"

Mutek banner in Montreal - May 27, 2009 (bneely)
Mutek

Mutek, the electronic music festival celebrating its tenth year, is currently underway in Montreal. The five-day fest runs to Sunday, May 31st, and it's streaming online. Moderat, the Modeselektor & Apparat supergroup, performed at Mutek on Thursday, May 28th; the group plays NYC's Music Hall of Williamsburg on Saturday, May 30th (the show was originally planned for Webster Hall). Tickets are still on sale.

Speaking of parties up North this summer... three other biggies are Ottawa Bluesfest (July 8th-19th), Vancouver Folk Music Festival (July 17-19th) and Calgary Folk Music Festival (July 23rd-26th). Each of those suitably transcend the "blues" and "folk" labels, hosting bands like The Dead Weather and Yeah Yeah Yeahs (in Ottawa), The Weakerthans and Rock Plaza Central (in Vancouver), and The Decemberists, Apostle of Hustle, Kid Koala and Akron/Family (in Calgary). Full lineup for the Calgary Fest (Ottawa in particular is much too massive to post) and ticket info below.

And don't forget about the previously reported Breeders-headlined Sled Island Fest in Calgary on June 24th-27th, Montreal's Osheaga, NXNE, and Toronto's Olympic Island Fest on July 11th, which will host Broken Social Scene and its Arts & Crafts cohorts.

Across the pond, UK's Glastonbury Festival, which runs from June 24th to 28th, has been sold out since February even though the full lineup wasn't announced until this week. Neil Young, Bruce Springsteen, and Blur will be joined by The Specials, Crosby, Stills & Nash, Spinal Tap, Jarvis Cocker, Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds, Madness, Tom Jones, Animal Collective and many others.

And finally in the States, Monolith Festival, which runs from September 12th to 13th at Red Rocks Ampitheatre in Colorado, has announced its intial lineup, Girl Talk, Passion Pit, and The Walkmen included. The whole thing is posted below.

The weekend before Monolith, Bumbershoot will take place in Seattle (September 5th-7th). That fest's lineup has been updated too. New additions include Vivian Girls, Akron/Family, and Elvis Perkins. All new additions, with previously announced acts, are below. Tickets are still on sale.

In Michigan, the Rothbury Festival over July 4th weekend will feature the only summer fest performance by The Dead, as well as sets by Bob Dylan, String Cheese Incident, Broken Social Scene and more. A few more jam-friendly acts were also just added to the bill. Full lineup below. Tickets are on sale.

Info on all the above fests, with ticket info, below...

Continue reading "Mutek underway, Monolith & Glastonbury lineups, Rothbury, Bumbershoot, Calgary Folk & other festival updates"

South Street Seaport

"It's simple really: Summer. Friday night. New York City. The first port in the new world hosting some of the best new music, as well as those established and influential artists you already know and love. All of this amidst the city's most inspiring views of tall buildings, historic ships and nighttime sky. All for FREE.

Get ready, cause summer is coming and with it another great line up on Pier 17 at the Seaport. Hard to believe we're entering our eighth season of summer shows but 2009 promises to be amongst our best.

Highlights this year include Superchunk, Polvo, Obits, The Pains of Being Pure at Heart and well, pretty much every night is a highlight to us.

Our FREE, outdoor series runs every Friday night from July 3 to August 14. The music starts at 6pm with a Guest DJ and bands go on around 7pm. Join us downtown to take in the stunning backdrop and enjoy New York's best open air venue.

Seaport Music is presented by the River to River Festival."

Updated free NYC show lineup below...

Continue reading "updated 2009 South Street Seaport Music lineup (free shows)"

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"

DOWNLOAD: Suckers - It Gets Your Body Movin' (MP3)

Suckers

ARTIST: Suckers
TITLE: Suckers EP
IAM 026 | Release Date: 04.14.09

Produced by Yeasayer's Anand Wilder
Tracklisting
01. Beach Queen
02. Afterthoughts & TV
03. Easy Chairs
04. It Gets Your Body Movin'

Help Suckers celebrate the release of the EP at Glasslands in Brooklyn tonight (4/23). Tanlines and Suckers are both on the bill ($5 at the door, free Colt 45 from 8-9 PM). Flyer below. Grab one of the four tracks for free above.

And if you miss the show, or even if you don't, there are plenty more chances to see Suckers in town. Their current schedule includes an opening slot on the May 12th Pains of Being Pure at Heart show at Bowery Balllroom, and an opening slot at the MGMT show in Prospect Park, and four shows at Pianos in July (a residency). All dates below...

Continue reading "Suckers - new EP, MP3, a party tonight & a Pianos residency"

South Street Seaport (more by Chris La Putt)
South Street Seaport

South Street Seaport - initial 2009 show schedule
June 13 (noon) - Children's Day
June 27 (7:00) - New York City Opera
July 03 (6:00) - Here We Go Magic & Bachelorette
July 10 (6:00) - The Pains of Being Pure at Heart & TBA
July 17 (6:00) - TBA
July 20-30 --- Sitelines (see below)
July 24 (6:00) - Black Moth Super Rainbow & TBA
July 31 (6:00) - TBA
Aug 07 (6:00) - Moshi Moshi day w/ Casiokids, The Wave Pictures & Slow Club
Aug 14 (6:00) - TBA

NYC's summer-long Seaport Music Series, part of the River to River Festival is back with more free, outdoor concerts in 2009. The initial portion of the always-indie-heavy lineup is here - both above, and in more detail, below...

Continue reading "South Street Seaport - initial 2009 free show schedule is here"