Entries tagged with: Wooden Wand
West Coast janglers Craft Spells are heading East next month to play Cincinatti's Midpoint Music Festival (September 27 - 29) which also features the likes of Grizzly Bear, The Walkmen, Dirty Projectors, Sleigh Bells and many more. Tickets for the fest are still available and the whole line-up is at the bottom of this post.
Before the festival, Craft Spells will be in NYC for a show at Glasslands on September 24 with new new romantics Ice Choir. Tickets for that show are on sale now.
You can stream Craft Spells' new-ish EP, Gallery, plus check out the whole Midpoint Music Fest line-up, below.
The second annual Hopscotch Festival will go down in downtown Raleigh, North Carolina, across 12 different venues with over 135 bands, from September 8th through 10th. The lineup this year runs the gamut of independent music... from traditional indie staples (The Flaming Lips, Guided By Voices, Superchunk) to southern-inflected rock (Drive-By Truckers) to noise (Prurient) to hip hop (Beans) to garage (Jeff The Brotherhood) to funk (Budos Band) to metal (Krallice), and everywhere in between (Swans, Rhys Chatham, etc etc). Tickets are currently on sale. Full lineup is below.
Hopscotch happens almost three months after Guided By Voices play a Brooklyn Northside Festival show in McCarren Park (tickets) which is one day after Beirut plays a Northside Festival show on the same McCarren Park stage with... Sharon Van Etten (though she may have been accidentally announced at one point, they officially kept her placement on the bill under wraps until after Saturday's Music Hall of Williamsburg show). Tickets for Beirut/SVE are still on sale, and another opener will be added too.
Hopscotch lineup below...
photos by Stefan Raduta, words by BBG
The Swans are wonderful to look at: three craggy veterans and three younger musicians. One of them is a guy named Thor, who has waist-length blond hair and hammers a set of bells. After he took off his shirt, he looked like nothing so much as a sweating blacksmith. There were three guitars and a pedal steel and another percussionist, all banging away... I saw Michael Gira's lips moving, but I couldn't hear what he was singing. I am told--and I believe--that the loudness is necessary, that it is part of the point. For a while, I found a place on the balcony, right by the railing, and I could look down at the heads of the people below, standing shoulder to shoulder and vibrating. And it was kind of thrilling in a visceral way. It blows everything else out of your head. -[AlternateSideParking]After a triumphant show at Brooklyn Masonic Temple with accompanying after-party on 10/8, Swans completed their NYC run on 10/9 at Bowery Ballroom (where the above review originates) with support from tour-mate Baby Dee. Reports from attendees of both NYC shows say that Bowery featured a less animated Michael Gira (no thumb-sucking or self-flagellation).
The setlist from Bowery (which was identical to Brooklyn Masonic), with more pics and all dates below...
Jack Rose, backstage @ Webster Hall in NYC, 2007
I have more great memories of Jack than of almost any other musician I know. That isn't because I spent more time with Jack - we saw each other somewhat regularly over the years on tour and at the odd festival - but because every encounter with him was memorable in some way. I'd say that Jack and I shared many things, but I know everyone who's ever met Jack has a similar story. His warmth, goodwill, stubbornness, and unflappable candor were all just as inspiring to me as his brilliant guitar playing.I found the picture and James (aka Wooden Wand)'s tribute at a new website set up in Jack's honor.
I'll never forget his unwavering defense of The Doors and Steely Dan even in the face of the erudite Wire-types who rightfully idolized him. I'll never forget his love of crappy detective novels. I'll never forget him making fun of me for liking Richard Pinhas. I'll never forget he and Jexie and I stumbling to find our cabins in the pitch black at Big Sur after a long and revelrous evening. I'll never forget him at Big Jar Books, always taking money at the door to ensure that bands were paid (and nobody - NOBODY - would dare try to slip past Jack!).
Another thing I will always remember about Jack is his devotion to his wife Laurie. Any time he spoke of her, his worship and adoration was palpable. But rather than his gruff exterior melting into something cutesy or soft, he seemed to grow even more serious when discussing his loyalty to Laurie, as if to impart that anyone who might ever dare say a word against this woman would rue the fucking day. It's something that always stuck with me about Jack.
My last communication with Jack was an audacious email proposal - I was interested in adding some vocals to some of his unreleased tunes. Despite even close friends discouraging me from such blasphemy - "we love you but you'll ruin it, James" - Jack was psyched about the idea and gave his blessing, saying that he's always written with vocals in mind. Can't help wondering if we mighta had another Voice Of The Eagle on our hands. Ha!
Dr Ragtime never met Blind Joe Death but I bet the two of 'em are having a good chuckle at all of us Sentimental Sallys right about now.
I loved Jack and will miss him very much. R.I.P, brotherman. It won't be the same without you.
-James Jackson Toth
James Jackson Toth @ Pianos 8/23 (more)
Earlier this year, James Jackson Toth "aka Wooden Wand aka Wand" put out two albums (both as "Wand," which I think is what he's mainly going by now). One of those was a b-sides and demos release called Hard Knox on Ecstatic Peace. The other was a limited-edition release called Born Bad on People in a Position to Know and Toth's own Mad Monk imprint. Two songs off Hard Knox are posted above.
The People in a Position label has a few more Toth releases in the works, including the debut of his band the Jescos. He also has a record coming out on Michael Gira's Young God Records set for early next year.
Wand will be touring the east coast this summer. Those dates include supporting gigs for Michael Gira, Woods and Akron/Family. The first of his NYC stops will be a show with Gira at the Issue Project Room on Saturday, July 25th.
Then, he'll be playing the Studio at Webster Hall on Sunday, July 26th with Larkin Grimm (who is also on Young God Records and whose upcoming shows include the Musicka Mystica Maxima Fest at Santos in September). Tickets are on sale.
Toth teams up with Akron/Family in mid-August to open several dates on that band's extensive summer/early fall tour. All Wand and Larkin Grimm tour dates are below...
photos by Kyle Dean Reinford, woods by Andrew Frisicano
Last year, the axman known as Wooden Wand (a.k.a. James Jackson Toth) shed his moniker for the Rykodisc-released Waiting in Vain. Also as James Jackson Toth, he played last year's CMJ, with a stop at the Brooklyn Vegan day party at Pianos (that's where the pictures in this post come from).
Now, in early '09, he's back with two albums under the name of WAND: the first, Born Bad, will be co-released by People In A Position To Know Records and Wand's Mad Monk label on March 31st, in limited-edition, LP-only style - "Only 500 copies, repress unlikley."
Then, Hard Knox or, "Are You Sure Hank Jr. Done it This Way?", a disc of demos and home recordings, will come out on Ecstatic Peace, May 26th, 2009.
And all signs point to Toth's next offering, a just-recorded group album, introducing another name to the mix: new band The Jescos (feat. "Timothy Bracy, formerly of The Mendoza Line along with members of alt-country faves Glossary and We Were The States"). Read about the band's recording adventures on his Toth Tells the Truth blog.
Toth remarked about his January 25th Daytrotter session on his Myspace blog:
"[The session's] exclusive covers of tunes by Baptist Generals, Aerosmith, Charlie Walker and Roy Buchanan were recorded in the midst of tour on the occasion of my 30th birthday, aka the worst day of my entire life (so far). Dig you the dispatch from oblivion. And the cute cartoon of me looking all lean and clean. While you're there, check out some other Daytrotter sessions. The TK Webb and Damien Jurado ones are especially terrific."More BV CMJ pics, the WAND album track list, and a Wooden Wand video, below...
James Jackson Toth (ex-Wooden Wand) released an album called Waiting In Vain on 7/29 on Rykodisc. The album features, among others, Nels Cline (Wilco), John Dietrich (Deerhoof) and Andy Cabic (aka Vetiver) on guitar, and it was produced by Steve Fisk (Nirvana, Screaming Trees). You can download two tracks from that above.
Jex Thoth (not Toth, THOTH) is married to James Jackson Toth and used to be in Wooden Wand with him. Jex Thoth is also the name of Jex Thoth's band that used to be called Totem. Jex Thoth (the band) recently released a self-titled album that James (aka Grim Jim) played guitar and bass on. So just to recap: James Toth contributed to Jex Thoth's new Jex Thoth album Jex Thoth (someone please correct me if I messed that up). Stream Jex Thoth HERE. Get an MP3 above.
Jex Thoth has no upcoming shows, but James Jackson Toth is on tour with Hardly Art recording artist The Dutches & the Duke. The NYC shows are Sunday at Mercury Lounge and the day after that at Union Hall. James is also playing some dates with the Silver Jews. All dates below...
DOWNLOAD: Scissors for Lefty - Lay Down Your Weapons (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Scissors for Lefty - Ghetto Ways (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Wooden Wand - The Pushers (Morning Version) (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Wooden Wand - Spitting at the Cameras (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: John Doe - The Golden State (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Joan As Policewoman - The Ride (MP3)
As summer draws near, the music release lists get shorter - especially for new releases. Sonic Youth's remastered edition of their classic album Daydream Nation (as recently performed live in Spain) and several Dick Dale reissues are the highlights of this release week for me.
I can also strongly recommend Joan As Police Woman's Real Life, Former X frontman John Doe's A Year In The Wilderness, former Jayhawk and Creekdipper Mark Olson's solo album, The Salvation Blues, Scissors for Lefty's Underhanded Romance, and Wooden Wand's James and the Quiet.
What new releases can you recommend this week?