Entries tagged with: The xx
Wow...Public Image Ltd, The Specials, Grizzly Bear, Passion Pit, Echo and the Bunnymen, Grace Jones, Fever Ray, Devo, Hot Chip, Phoenix, Orbital, Spoon, Sly and the Family Stone, Charlotte Gainsbourg, Sunny Day Real Estate, Yo La Tengo, Mew, Camera Obscura, Gil Scott-Heron, The xx, John Waters, Dillinger Escape Plan, Deer Tick, Gary Numan... Full Coachella 2010 lineup below....
"As Daedelus I tend to give into all my crazy thoughts, the twists and turns in productions will go this way and that way pretty much as it will. I almost feel like I have little say in the matter. Whilst the Long Lost for instance is two on all decisions (Laura Darlington, my wife and co-conspirator for the Long Lost, is quite good at the recording desk or behind a mic playing instruments or singing), that keeps the crazy much more domesticated. That, and we are interested at this time in songwriting that isn't altogether traditional, but has more elements people can access, I believe." [Daedelus]Daedelus will be going on tour with Jogger and Nosaj Thing across North America this February. They play NYC's (Le) Poisson Rouge on Saturday, February 20th. Tickets are on sale now.
Daedelus's new label, Magical Properties, who's putting on the tour, released Jogger's debut, This Great Pressure, last October. Album info is below and a remix of their song "Napping Captain" is a free download above.
Nosaj Thing is L.A. producer Jason Chung (whose website also lists "01.15.10 NYC? - New York, New York" a possible gig?). His remix of The xx's "Islands" is above. A 2010 Charlotte Gainsbourg remix is also on his resume.
Flyer and tour dates are below...
Joanna Newsom is one of the announced acts for this year's Big Ears Fest in Knoxville, TN, March 26th-28th. Others on the initial lineup include Vampire Weekend, St. Vincent, the Calder Quartet, Andrew WK, The Ex, Gang Gang Dance, Clogs, 802 Tour (Nico Muhly / Doveman / Sam Amidon with Nadia Sirota), The xx, Javelin, DJ/Rupture (solo), DJ/Rupture and Andy Moor, My Brightest Diamond, Gyan Riley, and jj. The fest's artist in residence is composer Terry Riley and a number of his works will be performed (including 'In C'). Bryce Dessner of the National is also one of the curators. Weekend tickets are on sale now. Tickets to invididual shows will be announced later this month, along with the schedule (shows are at different venues around town).
Romy Madley Croft @ Le Poisson Rouge - Jan 2, 2010
Saturday night The xx's female vocalist Romy Madley Croft spun records for her headlining 2AM DJ set at the West Village's Le Poisson Rouge. Finger on the Pulse and VHS or Beta packed the dance floor with their pounding DJ sets before handing the decks off to Romy.The xx will headline Webster Hall in NYC on March 31st, part of their tour with jj. Tickets go on American Express presale Wednesday at noon, and then general sale Friday the same time (thx Phil).
Quite different from what you'd expect to hear on an album by The xx, Romy's solo set consisted of hip hop and pop classics from the likes of Aaliyah, Adina Howard and beyond. It was a great way to kick off the first Saturday of 2010. [Tastes Like Caramel]
DOWNLOAD: jj - Ecstacy (MP3)
Sweden's jj put out a debut single and album in 2009, jj n° 1 and jj n° 2, respectively. The albums got them lots of attention including a spot on Pitchfork's Top 50 Albums of 2009. Their second full-length, jj nº 3, will be released by Secretly Canadian, in conjunction with Scandinavian label Sincerely Yours, on March 9th in the US (UK TBA). The Lil Wayne-sampling "Ecstacy," off their first full-length, is posted above.
Though it says "they," the exact lineup of the live group is unknown. A video below indicates that they've played before as a twosome, with a backing track and live vocals and tambourine. We'll see what happens when the group joins the xx for the previously announced set of shows across North America (their first ever here) in March and April.
The two double letter bands start out together in the South on March 22nd and get to NYC by the end of that month. The NYC shows, which were previously unannounced, are on 3/30 and 3/31, but there's a bit of a mystery at the moment about exactly who is on each bill. jj definitely play both dates including the March 30th show at Knitting Factory which is only $10 and already on sale (no xx listed there, and probably too cheap of a ticket price for them to be added).
The next show is March 31st at Webster Hall
(a venue big enough for the xx). The xx currently have a hole in their tour schedule for both days, so it seems likely they'll play at least the show at Webster Hall (stay tuned for more info)... which is definitely with the xx. Tickets go on American Express presale Wednesday at noon, and then general sale Friday the same time
All jj tour dates and a pair of videos are below...
photos by Paul Birman
"In a recent interview, the xx talked about expanding their sound. So much has happened to them in the short space of time since they recorded this debut that their next record can't fail to be infused with this experience. All the more reason to cherish this album, then. For this was more than just the sound of 2009, it was a distinctive musical statement of the like we may never get to hear again." [The Guardian]The xx finished a tour with Friendly Fires at Webster Hall in NYC on December 5th. We already did a post about that show, but then the very talented Paul Birman mentioned he had a set of pictures that could use a home. Those are the pictures in this post.
Five days after the NYC show, The xx made their network television debut on the Carson Daly show. Video from appearance is below.
And I'm not sure what brings them back, but The xx must be hanging around a bit because they have another NYC appearance scheduled for January 2nd.. It's not a live show though, they are just DJing at Le Poisson Rouge at a late night party with VHS or Beta Dee Jays and Finger On The Pulse. Tickets are $5+fee if you buy them in advance or slightly more if you wait for the door.
Tickets are also still on sale for the show that The xx is playing with Hot Chip at Terminal 5 on April 22nd.
All dates with the rest of those pictures and the video below...
Animal Collective @ ATP NY (more by Ryan Muir)
So how the hell did Merriweather Post Pavilion-- an album closer in spirit to the sub-aquatic psychedelia of 2005's Feels and Panda Bear's 2007 solo Person Pitch than its predecessor-- wind up in the Billboard Top 20 and outsell both the Arctic Monkeys and Franz Ferdinand's most recent albums in North America? That mystery is ultimately the most wonderful thing about the album. Unlike so many indie-rock crossover artists before them, Animal Collective did not breach the mainstream by cleaning up their act, or adopting classic-rock conventions, or scoring a strategic soundtrack or iPod-commercial placement. And, above all, they did little to formalize their defining mercurial quality. [Pitchfork]Pitchfork posted their Top 50 Albums of 2009.
Animal Collective is DJing the Museum of Natural History in January.
"Not that happy w/ the XX's (too short) set tonight. But Friendly Fires blew me away. wow." - TheGreyestGhost
"Lots of cute frat boys at the Friendly Fires concert. Which was surprising. Yum anyway!" - HereAndNow3
photos by Chris La Putt
Friendly Fires @ Webster Hall
"It makes us giddy with delight to announce that New York's finest, Holy Ghost, are going to join the line-up [of our December 11th show at London's Coronet Theatre]. As if their addition weren't early christmas present enough, we're also going to be revealing an exclusive and highly limited 12" at the show. We've recorded an entirely new reworking of 'on board', showcasing the lung capacity of our brass section. On the other side of 'On Board'(pig bag version) is a fun loving remix by the boisterous Joakim. So as not to rub in the face of the ticketless too much, the 12" is also going to be available in a very limited number of record shops as well. Perfect stocking filler for any nan on the scene. [Friendly Fires]"Friendly Fires completed their tour with The xx Saturday night at Webster Hall in NYC (12/5). Pictures from that show are in this post.
The xx start up again in March with US dates running almost to the end of April (aka look for them to appear at both SXSW and Coachella this year). The xx's next NYC show is April 22nd at Terminal 5 with Hot Chip (tickets still on sale). Hot Chip are DJing the above-mentioned UK Friendly Fires show - the show where people will get a first shot at picking up the hot new Joakim remix on vinyl. You can listen to the song now though - thanks to someone ripping it from Annie Mac's BBC show and posting the clip to YouTube.
That video, all dates, and more pictures from Webster Hall, below...
Hot Chip have announced the existense of their fourth studio album. "One Life Stand" will be released by Astralwerks on February 9, 2010. "Fans will have the chance to pre-buy the album on amazon.com starting this week." Track list below.
In other exciting news, the band will return to the United States to play a handful of shows in April with The xx. The NYC date is April 22nd at Terminal 5. All dates below.
In related news, Hot Chip member Al Doyle just got a new tattoo to remember his friend Jerry Fuchs.
Someone uploaded the new song "Take It In" to YouTube. Listen to that with all the other stuff, below...
When I got to the xx show at Bowery Ballroom last night (11/11), I was told by someone reliable that Gil Scott-Heron was planning on joining the headlining UK band on stage for some songs - both with them and on his own for a few. At first I thought that was completely random. Then I realized that the xx's label XL Recordings recently announced that they signed Gil. They'll be releasing "I'm New Here", his first album since 1994's "Spirits", on Jan. 11, 2010. And according to jamespenycate, "The XX are remixing the entire Gil Scott Heron album". You can listen to four song clips, and watch video of Gil in the studio, at imnewhere.net.
Ends up Gil didn't join The xx on stage, though I saw him there after the show and apparently he did sound check with them (it's unclear why the change of plan). Ends up Baria Quresh didn't join The xx on stage either. The band performed as a trio and XL confirms that Baria's hiatus is permanent.
Fellow UK musician Jon Hopkins opened the show with a set of solo electro that had him pushing all kinds of buttons on stage to the delight of those that bothered to check him out. "Hopkins's third album, Insides, was released by Just Music in conjunction with Domino Records on May 5, 2009."
I'm in love the xx album, so seeing them live can't be that bad, which it wasn't, but it's nowhere near as good as the album. The young band will hopefully improve their show over time. The annoying crowd (people were talking through the performance on every side of me... and there was at least one person who answered her cell phone) generally appreciated it though - there was lots of clapping especially for favorites like "Basic Space". The band said it was good to be back in NYC which they said was like their second home. It's true. They played a bunch of shows here before CMJ and then a bunch more during CMJ, and they'll be back again in December with Friendly Fires. Tickets are still on sale for that Webster Hall show.
The video for "Basic Space" and some Gil Scott-Heron clips, below...
Baria Quereshi @ the NBC Experience Store (more by Tim Griffin)
Rumours were rife that The xx guitarist Baria Quereshi had left the group after she decided not to play at their gig at the Village Underground in Shoreditch last night.The xx were just in NYC over the weekend and played a bunch of CMJ-related shows, including one in an NBC store (pictured above), and a Saturday late night set at the Tribeca Grand Hotel. Videos from the latter below...
The band declared they were "devastated" at her absence.
The Quietus favourites took to the stage without Baria, prompting bassist and singer Oliver Sim to tell the crowd: "Obviously this has been a really tough few days for us. This is the first time we've played as a three piece...
...He added that although the band had been forced to cancel their European tour dates, they planned to discuss their future after the weekend, and described Baria's absence as a temporary break rather than anything more permanent.
The statement said: "Baria didn't perform last night after feeling exhausted from The xx's recent touring commitments. As a result, the band performed as a 3 piece in London last night and have postponed some European shows which they are hoping to reschedule. They are next due to play in Frankfurt on 3rd November." [The Quietus]
photos by Vincent Cornelli
School of Seven Bells
Friday night's show at Music Hall of Williamsburg had its share of problems. First it was moved from Webster Hall to Music Hall of Williamsburg (presumably for less-than-expected ticket sales). Then one of its openers, First Aid Kit, couldn't get into the country. They were replaced by the Depreciation Guild. Then the other opener, Warpaint, mysteriously disappeared off the bill and was replaced by Phantogram. Finally, to add insult to injury, School of Seven Bells were supposed to be the headliner, but not surprisingly, some of the crowd cleared out after the much hyped xx played third of fourth on the bill at the sold out show.
"Their stage setup was really xxxxxxxxxx-core, with two large X podiums from the left to the right with the band members dressed up in dark colours. The band's stage presence was very striking; this only complemented their minimalist dream pop sequence.More pictures from the show below....
The XX do not have the energetic stage presence that most bands at CMJ have. They just hammered out each song without any variation. It was as if their hearts did not skip a beat.
If the XX come to your town, expect a good show but not one that's too jumpy. You can shout out the lyrics from the audience but the XX will remain stoic, just to deliver and concentrate on putting on a live show." [B Sides]
photos by Tim Griffin
Next up for Javelin will be opening shows for The Very Best, touring with Lucky Dragons, and playing a couple of dates with the Phenomenal Handclap Band including that December 11th show at Bowery Ballroom (tickets). The Thrill Jockey-signed Brooklyn (via Providence) duo also have a show coming up at Monster Island even sooner. All dates and more pictures from Mercury Lounge below...
photos by Tim Griffin
"Two highly touted bands -- the XX from England and Cold Cave from Philadelphia -- are dedicated, and largely derivative, throwbacks to the late 1970s and early 1980s, when punk met synthesizers. The XX was decidedly understated, matching its austere, quietly morose songs, while Cold Cave deadpanned its way through glum songs with a dissonant wallop, singing, "I've seen the future and it's no place for me." But the Montreal band Duchess Says, whose songs also rode big drumbeats and repetitive synthesizer riffs -- fat ones from a Moog -- was a lot more fun [at the BrooklynVegan day show at Pianos on Thursday]. Its singer, Annie-Claude, had herky-jerk stage moves that she carried into the audience, even climbing onto a fan or two." [NY Times]The xx played a bunch of shows this CMJ including one at the NBC Experience Store on Friday at 2PM.
...What the "venue" lacked in ambiance (they set up & played next to the frozen yogurt counter upstairs), it made up for in lack of crowd noise: dead silent during and between these quiet songs. I don't imagine that will be the case at the Tribeca Grand tonight, but the band was so good that I may give it a shot anyway... [Anonymous]More pictures below...
photos by Tim Griffin
DOWNLOAD: The xx - Basic Space (MP3)
The xx has turned out to be one of the bands everyone wants to see at CMJ this year. Their was a line around the block for their Wednesday night show at Mercury Lounge. It couldn't have been much easier to get into their equally small shows last night at the Apple Store and The Delancey.
"Arriving early [to the Apple Store] was key and grabbing a seat right in third row center, I was shocked to get a full 50 minute set, when I was just anticipating 3-4 songs. The xx walked on stage as if they just shopped down the block at Topshop / Topman and seemed a bit scared to play to us few hundred in attendance. The xx, whose sound is a cross between Glasvegas meets Mono, are an interesting band to witness and listen to. They are not the type of band you want to be standing when you see them, they can certainly make you relax and unwind, but in no way is their music dull and boring. In fact it is the opposite, its very intricate and involved. With two singers, a programmer and a backing guitarist / synth op set a nice mood in a non traditional venue. The Apple store's sound was very good and the show was being recorded for iTunes." [Sal]There are two more chances to see them tonight (10/23) - first at Music Hall of Williamsburg where they open for School of Seven Bells and then late night at Tribeca Grand. Jamie is DJing the Pitchfork party at Market Hotel on Saturday (and Cold Cave was just added to that bill). More pictures from Mercury Lounge below...
by Andrew Frisicano
If looking for a way to see some of CMJ's top bands without a badge or tickets, three stores - Sound Fix, Other Music and Apple Store Soho - are all offering free in-store performances through the week.
Other Music in Manhattan hosts El Perro Del Mar tonight (10/20 @ 8pm). El Perro - real name Sarah Assbring - was to play a Joe's Pub show on November 9th. That's been canceled. She's opening for Peter, Bjorn & John this November - their Nov. 10th show was moved from Terminal 5 to Webster Hall and bumped a day earlier (now Nov. 9th).
If you're out today (10/20), El Perro Del Mar will be DJing (4-5pm) at Pianos this afternoon. Perhaps she'll spin something from her new record, Love Is Not Pop, which is out today (there's some nice dance remixes on at the end of it).
Also at Other Music, The Very Best play a daytime in-store (noon) on Thursday (10/22), which is probably less than 12 hours after they play (Le) Poisson Rouge's Green Owl CMJ showcase on Wednesday night with Theophilus London, Violens, Grandchildren, Ninjasonik and Nat Geo Music (the late show after LPR's New Amsterdam/Cantaloupe Recs showcase).
At Sound Fix (all shows 7pm), Antlers play a short acoustic set on Wednesday (they also play a BV showcase tonight, 10/20, at Music Hall of Williamsburg), and Cymbals Eat Guitars (at BV Pianos party Saturday afternoon) perform on Thursday. Tonight (10/20) at Sound Fix, you can catch Brooklyn's own Bell. More dates below.
Speaking of the xx's busy schedule, let's just go through it: They're also at Mercury Lounge on Wednesday (10/21), Music Hall of Williamsburg on Friday with School of Seven Bells (now sold out) and a late-night Tribeca Grand party on October 23rd with FIXED's DJ JDH + Dave P (RSVP).
If you're after the Antlers and the xx together in one convenient spot, they're both playing a late-night NME CMJ party on Thursday, October 22nd at The Delancey with We Are Enfant Terrible, Reni Lane, Yes Giantesses and Ultra Violent Lights. The xx are the "special guest" on that show.
All times for the CMJ in-stores, tour dates and details are below...
DOWNLOAD: The xx - Basic Space (Micachu Remix) (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Florence and the Machine - You've Got the Love (The xx Remix) (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: School of Seven Bells - Iamundernodisguse (Alt Mix) (MP3)
The xx @ South Street Seaport in August (more by Chris La Putt)
UK's the xx will have already played a large amount of shows in New York City by the end of 2009, and there are more to announce. The xx have augmented their CMJ schedule with a performance at the Apple store in Soho on Thursday, October 22nd. Before that, they play at Mercury Lounge on Oct. 21st with Javelin and Lia Ices (tickets and CMJ badges at the door). Then the xx play an Oct. 23rd show with School of Seven Bells and First Aid Kit. That gig was supposed to be at Webster Hall, but it has now been moved to Music Hall of Williamsburg. Tickets are still on sale.
School of Seven Bells has a deluxe release of 2008's Alpinisms that's coming out digitally on October 13th. The first song on that, an alternate version of "Iamundernodisguise," is posted above.
The xx's November 11th show at Bowery Ballroom also changed venues - it was originally scheduled for at Mercury Lounge. It's now sold out. Finally, they play December 5th at Webster Hall with Friendly Fires. To recap:
The xx back in NYCMore TBA? I think so.
Oct 21 @ Mercury Lounge New York (CMJ)
Oct 22 @ iTunes Instore (Apple Store, SoHo)
Oct 23 @ MHOW w/ School of Seven Bells (CMJ)
Nov 11 @ Bowery Ballroom
Dec 05 @ Webster Hall New York w/ Friendly Fires
Speaking of the Apple Soho store, Phoenix was just there last week (9/24) and Ladyhawke played the store the week before that (9/15). That same day (September 15th), Sonic Youth was to release an iTunes-only four-song EP of their June performance at the store. The record never came out, and seems to be delayed for an unknown period of time. Sonic Youth play NYC's Terminal 5 on November 21st with Cold Cave and Dinosaur Jr. It's sold out, but the Feelies show happening the same night at Maxwell's isn't yet.
The xx recently remixed Florence and the Machine's "You've Got the Love." That is posted above. Florence will come from the UK to play an October 27th show at the Bowery Ballroom. It's sold out, but I wouldn't be surprised if they add another show too.
The xx's debut self-titled record comes out October 6th on Young Turks/XL Recordings. All tour dates for the xx (and Florence) and videos for the xx's two singles are posted below...
The xx @ South Street Seaport in August (more by Chris La Putt)
"Strongly influenced by modern R&B-- the [xx] made hay with an early cover of Womack & Womack's "Teardrops", while UK copies of xx come packed with their version of Aaliyah's "Hot Like Fire"-- the xx use a drum machine to complement their copiously tidy compositions. Unlike contemporary R&B fetishists Hot Chip or Discovery, who have clearly spent long hours internalizing Timbaland, the Neptunes, and other radio cognoscenti, the xx incorporate more abstract elements of the genre: a liberal use of bass tones and an unwavering focus on sex and interpersonal relationships." [P4k - Best New Music]The xx's December 5th show with Friendly Fires at Webster Hall is still on sale, but a bit far off. The band has some sooner shows lined up for NYC.
The xx play a show on November 11th at Bowery Ballroom - the new date and location for their previously-scheduled November 12th show at Mecury Lounge ("All tickets will be honored."). Tickets are currently listed on Ticketmaster (for "November 12"), but not actually back on sale yet.
And before that, they'll be in NYC for a CMJ show with School of Seven Bells (who they opened for at the Seaport this August) on Friday, October 23rd. Also on this Webster Hall bill are First Aid Kit and Magic Wands. Tickets are still on sale (and we assume some CMJ badgeholders will be let in). More SOSB dates HERE.
Clips from an August 20th in-store in Brighton, UK, with updates tour dates (including a few more new November shows) are below...
DOWNLOAD: The xx - Basic Space (Micachu Remix) (MP3)
The xx @ South Street Seaport on 8/14 (more by Chris La Putt)
"The XX played 972 shows in NYC this weekend but the one we saw at Mercury Lounge after they played [Mark] Ronson's Authentic Shit on [East Village Radio] was mangled by bad sound until Ronson himself handed singer/guitarist Romy Croft a new guitar and the band played one more song. Their mics worked the whole time though, along with the drum machine for the most part, so aside from some light picking, not much was missed. In fact, their eerie spareness was enhanced, and for the first time in recent memory, the people in the back stopped talking to hear what was going on." [FADER]After their epic run of NYC dates, culminating in their South Street Seaport gig on August 14th (which ones did you see?), the xx are planning another round of NYC appearances. The band opens for Friendly Fires (again) at their sort-of-previously-announced December 5th show at Webster Hall (and at other shows on that Friendly Fires tour). Tickets for the NYC Show are on AmEx presale now, general sale on Friday, August 21st at noon.
The xx also have their own headlining gig at the Mercury Lounge on November 12th. Same deal with tickets for that.
Friendly Fires and The xx played Music Hall of Williamsburg (where the girl danced) one night after Friendly Fires played Le Poisson Rouge with The Phenomenal Handclap Band (who play PS1 this Saturday, 8/22). Micachu, who remixed the xx song available for download above under the name M.A.T.H.E.S., was scheduled to play Le Poisson Rouge on October 3rd, but that has been canceled.
All FF & xx tour dates are below...
photos by Chris La Putt
"The xx, a four-piece from the United Kingdom, were a competent enough opening band, with interesting song structures and crystal-clear guitar lines. However, we haven't seen a more morose crew of characters in a while, and the fact that all four of them stood rooted to their positions on stage throughout the performance made them a less than inspiring live act. Still, their wistful vocals and rhythmic drum machine beats were enough to keep most the crowd entertained and happily spaced out.Friday night's show (8/14) was the final free Seaport show of the summer. Reminisce HERE. More pictures from Friday below...
School of Seven Bells, appropriately, were the highlight of the night. Only consisting of three members -- twin sisters Alejandra and Claudia Deheza and The Secret Machines' Benjamin Curtis -- the ethereal, full-bodied sound they established on their debut LP Alpininisms shone through uncommonly well. Live, their sound is similar to that of dream-pop godfathers Blonde Redhead -- unsurprising considering they've toured together -- but School of Seven Bells manages to get a lot more done in their live show." [20 Watts]
by Bill Pearis
DOWNLOAD: Lights On - John and Anne (MP3)
Glasgow's Trashcan Sinatras have been with us for 20 years now, having perfected their brand of sparkling, literate guitar pop that initially garnered them comparisons to The Smiths. Like fellow Glaswegians The Blue Nile, the Trashcan Sinatras take their time between albums -- the brand new In the Music is only the band's fifth. (It should be noted that time between albums is not entirely their doing -- the band have had colossally bad luck with record labels.) The band made the album here in New York with Ivy guitarist Andy Chase behind the boards. Like their other four records, it's loaded with gorgeous songs, arpeggiated guitar lines and swoon-worthy harmonies. Weirdly, it's also got Carly Simon singing backing vocals on the song "Should I Pray?" How did that come about? Guitarist Paul Livingston explained to Bullz-Eye.com:
PL: Well, after we recorded the backing tracks in New York, the producer, Andy Chase, was going to set up a studio at his house in Martha's Vineyard. And he said, "Come on, Carly Simon lives here." And we were floored, and thought, "That would be great if we could meet her." And so he asked her to sing on a song, and we got her a lot of the songs we were working on. But the disappointing thing was, when we were in Martha's Vineyard, she was in New York. So we didn't meet her, which is kind of a bummer.Maybe Carly will show up at Trashcan Sinatra's show this Saturday at Bowery Ballroom (8/15). Tickets are still available. Either way, they tour here about as often as they make records so don't miss this chance to see them. Opening is Andy Chase's other band, Brookeville, who definitely owe a little to Trashcan Sinatras and other pristine '80s pop.
BE: Oh, that's no fun.
PL: Yeah, that's shit, isn't it? The idea was that she'd come to Martha's Vineyard and sing, and that'd be great. And then when people asked us in interviews, 'what was it like,' we thought we'd have a better answer than, "We didn't meet her." But we're going to invite her to some of these gigs, see if she'll come. But it was really nice of her to be so into the music.
You could make it a night of late-'80s/early-'90s UK pop Saturday (8/15) if you bolted from Bowery Ballroom right after the Trashcans and hit Cake Shop where former (and sometimes current) Wonder Stuff frontman Miles Hunt will be performing. For those who don't remember, the band were originally part of the short-lived UK "grebo" scene (bands that looked like hippies but sounded punk-ish) that also included Pop Will Eat Itself (Hunt was their original drummer) and Neds Atomic Dustbin, but the band soon developed a celtic pop sound that got them into the British charts many times. In those days of the most unfortunate fashion in modern history, The Wonder Stuff were staples on U.S. college and commercial alternative radio too, with cheeky songs like "A Wish Away," "Don't Let Me Down Gently," and "Welcome to the Cheap Seats." Miles is touring with Wonder Stuff violinist Erika Nockalls which is nice since fiddle played heavily into their sound.
Also this week: San Diego's Lights On make their first trip to NYC, playing four shows starting Thursday night (8/13) at Club NME at the Annex. I don't know a whole lot about them, but their self-released debut EP is a nice collection of '80s-influence pop -- most reviews I've read bring up New Order and Echo & the Bunnymen, both of which are pretty easy to detect in their sound. But it's definitely more influence than imitation, and I like them enough to check out one of the four shows (all dates at the bottom of this post). If you could go to any of the four, I'd recommend the Saturday (8/15) show at Union Hall in which they're part of a solid lineup that also includes Philly's can-banging Drink Up Buttercup, Kiwi-influenced Brooklynites Beach Fossils, and Florida buzz band Blind Man's Colour.
Blind Man's Colour
Blind Man's Colour make the sort of cut-n-paste psychedelia that gets you quick comparisons to Animal Collective, and they've been praised by Kanye West ("SOME DOPE SHIT FOR MY APARTMENT"), as well as by people you might more expect (Ed Droste, Stereogum, Pitchfork). Their debut album, Season Dreaming, which I like about half of, is out next week on Kanine Records (Grizzly Bear, Chairlift, Princeton) but I'd have to imagine they'll be selling it at the merch table. These guys had their first-ever live show a couple weeks ago, so you might want to go in with lowered expectations. BMC are playing a number of shows this weekend, and all area dates are listed at the bottom of this post.
Other shows happening this weekend: Tonight (8/13) at Hudson River Park at Pier 54 we've got a free River Rocks show with Yeasayer and Amazing Baby. I haven't seen Yeasayer since All Hour Cymbals was still fresh (circa CMJ 2007?), so I'm curious to hear some of their new material and check out the now five-strong lineup. As for Amazing Baby, it's well documented on this site I'm a fan but realize many are not. Chacun à son goût.
Friday is the final show of this year's Seaport Music series, ending strong with School of Seven Bells and The xx. The forecast looks good, and shows have been sounding great at the Seaport all summer so this is how I'd recommend you kick off the weekend, though I realize many will be at Prospect Park for Animal Collective. But Seaport is free.
Too much going on Friday. If you want to dance, Littlefield has Canada's slightly nerdy duo Woodhands and the Latin-loving Project Jenny/Project Jan.
And if shambly DIY pop is more your thing, The Beets (who will soon be hitting the road with Vivian Girls), German Measles, Pop.1280 and the new-but-quite-promising Fluffy Lumbers play Silent Barn. It's a birthday bash for my pal Rachel (full disclosure!) but everyone's welcome. Flyer below.
I think that about does it. Tour dates, videos and flyers are after the jump...
Grace Potter @ the 2009 Clearwater Festival (more by Chris La Putt)
Kaki King @ Stuytown Oval in July (more by Tim Griffin)
Casiokids @ the Cameo in 2008 (more by Ryan Muir)
tonight in NYC
* The Drums @ Don Hill's
* Awesome New Republic @ Pianos
* Antifolk Festival @ Sidewalk Cafe
* Kaki King presents The Exhibition @ Littlefield
* Joe Pernice, The Walsh Brothers @ Bowery Ballroom
* The Sundelles, Darlings, Knight School @ Glasslands
* Asphalt Orchestra @ Lincoln Center's Josie Robertson Plaza
* Casiokids, The Wave Pictures, Slow Club @ South Street Seaport
* Child Abuse, Harry Merry, Ga'an, Eats Tapes, MNDR @ Silent Barn
* Jana Hunter, Inoculist, Virgin Forest, Julia Weldon @ Bruar Falls
* Buke & Gass, Adventure, Why I Must Be Careful, Von Haze @ Market Hotel
* Pterodactyl, Paper Mice, That Ghost, The Fucking Ocean @ Death By Audio
* Free Energy, Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros, The xx @ Mercury Lounge
* Jessica 6, Light Asylum, Shannon Funchess, Something in Spanish @ Coco 66
* Grace Potter & the Nocturnals, Deer Tick, Jones Street Station @ Prospect Park
* Lincoln Center's Out of Doors Fest w/ Raul Midon, Meshell Ndegeocello @ Damrosch Park
Free outdoor music tonight includes a Celebrate Brooklyn show with Grace Potter & the Nocturnals, Deer Tick (who have many more shows coming up) and Jones Street Station at the Prospect Park Bandshell, Lincoln Center's Out of Doors Fest presenting Raul Midon and Meshell Ndegeocello (subbing for Rokia Traore ) at Damrosch Park, the Asphalt Orchestra at Lincoln Center's Josie Robertson Plaza, and Casiokids, The Wave Pictures and Slow Club (all on Moshi Moshi's 10th anniversary tour) at South Street Seaport.
The Grace Potter afterparty is at Brooklyn Bowl.
Next week's final Seaport Music of the season will feature School of Seven Bells and an opening set from The xx. The latter band kicks off its week of NYC gigs with a show at the Mercury Lounge tonight. Also on the bill are Free Energy, Sean Bones and Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros. The xx's video for "Basic Space" is below.
Author and Pernice brother Joe visits the Bowery Ballroom with another set of Brothers, The Walsh Brothers.
Antifolk Festival at the Sidewalk Cafe kicks off tonight with sets from BJ Snowden, The Young Dads, The Venn Diagrams and more. It runs through August 16th.
Kaki King, who recently played the Stuy Town Oval, presents an exhbition of guitar art at Littlefield.
Lollapalooza is happening in Chicago.
Arctic Monkeys' official video for "Crying Lightning", below...
by Bill Pearis
DOWNLOAD: Casiokids - Finn Bikkjen! (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Casiokids - Fot I Hose (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Casiokids - Verdens Storsteland (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: The Wave Pictures - Avocado Baby (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: The Wave Pictures - Just Like a Drummer (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Slow Club - It Doesn't Have to Be Beautiful (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Slow Club - Because We're Dead (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: The XX - Basic Space (MP3)
Slow Club in the crowd @ the Moshi Moshi showcase, SXSW 2009
There is one unmissable show this week, in my opinion, and it's a free one: Friday's Seaport Music Series (8/7) with three excellent bands from the Moshi Moshi label: Casiokids, Slow Club and The Wave Pictures. This is part of a tour celebrating the UK label's 10th Anniversary that kicks off in full tonight in Toronto (8/5). Moshi Moshi, and their influential Singles Club, has launched the careers of Bloc Party, Hot Chip, Kate Nash, Lykke Li, Au Revoir Simone, Friendly Fires , Florence and the Machine and others.
I'm well documented as a big Casiokids fan and these Norwegians are a lot of fun live (like when they played a BrooklynVegan party at SXSW this year). There's a couple MP3s at the top of this post, including their brand-new single "Finn Bikkjen!" (Though "Fot I Hose" is the real jam, also above.) I've also written about Slow Club before who are one of the most charming bands I've seen this year. Their album might be a bit twee for some, but I dare anyone not to be won over by their live show. They were at SXSW too (picture from one of their shows above).
Wave Pictures' frontman David Tattersall has the angst of Hefner's Darren Hayman, and the witty wordplay of the Morrissey ("My tongue is on the run and it's only just begun" may be this year's "Bigmouth Strikes again."), and band play it fast and loose like early Modern Lovers. Tattersall's vocals may be too idiosyncratic for some at first, but so were Moz and Hayman's probably, so keep listening, because they're excellent! And if you like this, there's about five more albums where that came from. (And if the Hefner comparisons intrigue, Tattersall and Hayman have a bluegrass band too. Don't wince, it's good too.)The Wave Pictures have a new album out, If You Leave it Alone, which is nearly the equal of Instant Coffee Baby. The band have almost played here at least three times only to drop out, but I'm told they're really going to play this time. And it's not just NYC that's getting them: The Moshi Moshi Road Trip features all three bands, though some dates don't feature Wave Pictures and some don't have Casiokids, but any permutation of the three is still a good time. Check the tour dates below to see which bands will hopefully be near you on this tour. Weather looks to be nice, but the Seaport fest folks have said that if it does end up looking like rain... it will move indoors, locale TBD. But let's hope for sunny skies.
The Wave Pictures
Joe Pernice plays Bowery Ballroom on Friday (8/7) as part of his book tour promoting his enjoyable debut novel, It Feels So Good When I Stop which I just finished reading. It's about a twentysomething slacker as he tries to figure his life out in mid-'90s Amhurst, Mass. There's not a lot of plot, it's more a snapshot of a time a lot of us have been through (or will soon), but he gets the details right and there's a lot of well-observed humor, as well as a lot more filthy talk than I was expecting. It also features a cameo (I know that's not the right term) from Lou Barlow (who has a new album coming out and tour dates announced). While it's not about a musician per se, music figures heavily into the characters lives and Joe has just released a companion album with covers of some of the songs written about in the book, including The Dream Syndicate's "Tell Me When It's Over" and Del Shannon's "I Go to Pieces," all done in that lush, breathy style Pernice is known for. There's also a Sub Pop single out this week credited to the fictional band Young Accuser who also figure into the story's proceedings. Confusing I know, but it'll make more sense once you read the book. Which I recommend you do. The Bowery Show will feature songs from the It Feels So Good album but I'd imagine he'd throw in some Pernice Brothers songs as well. Tickets are still on sale.
And finally, this Friday (8/7) is the first of UK band The XX's many upcoming NYC shows at Mercury Lounge with Philly's '80s-rockin' Free Energy. I've been listening to the XX's self-titled debut a lot lately, and I dig the minimalist approach they bring to their songs which reminds me a little of Young Marble Giants with a twangy Chris Isaak thing going on too. There's a lot of space in their songs and that breathing room is nice in today's climate of over-processed, over-compressed recordings. You can download their new single, "Basic Space" at the top of this post. Will they be any good live? One would think you wouldn't play six shows in a week without being able to make an impression with an audience but I guess we'll find out soon enough. Their show at Bruar Falls on Saturday is free, and they're also opening for School of Seven Bells at next week's final Seaport show of the season. And five shows in between. The August 13th show at MHOW is with Friendly Fires who they'll be back in the States in November and December for some more touring. A December 5th Friendly Fires show at Webster Hall was announced yesterday (though the opener wasn't listed), but then disappeared. Stay tuned to see if that comes back.
Tour dates for all the bands in this post and select video after the jump...
The XX, four young, sullen-faced youths dressed in black, have that alluring band-as-a-gang aura about them. They spent their youth at south-west London's Elliott School (fellow alumni: Four Tet, Burial and Hot Chip) obsessively tinkering with instruments in the music room before signing a deal and self-producing their album in their record company's back office.The xx's debut record, conveniently called xx, will come out October 20th via Young Turks/XL Recordings (just to keep it straight: the xx is releasing xx on xl).
At first glance, you'd expect them to make basement rock'n'roll songs serrated with guitar feedback, but they're more interesting than that. For starters, they're fronted by a boy/girl combo - Romy Madley Croft (guitar) and Oliver Sim (bass) - whose interplay lends their debut an intimate tension. Along with bandmates Baria Qureshi (keyboards/guitar) and Jamie Smith (programming/samples), Croft and Sim craft languid, sparsely arranged love songs that recall atmospheric 80s acts such as the Cocteau Twins and Mazzy Star. Better still, they betray their south London roots: gentle, plaintive melodies are framed by minimal beats that nod to dubstep and R&B. [Guardian UK]
In August the band is visiting NYC for a bunch of shows. As previously announced, they're opening for School of Seven Bells' South Street Seaport show on August 14th, but they're here at least a week before that. Their first NYC show comes on August 7th when they play the Mercury Lounge with Free Energy, Sean Bones and Edward Sharpe & the Magnetic Zeros (tickets). Then, they play Bruar Falls on the 8th, Monkey Town on the 10th, Pianos on the 12th, and Music Hall of Williamsburg with Friendly Fires on August 13th. I wouldn't be surprised if they add even more.
The video for the band's song "Crystalized," with all tour dates, below...