Entries tagged with: chickfactor

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The Clientele @ Chickfactor 22 (more by Greg Cristman)
The Clientele

The Clientele, who just played Brooklyn as part of the Chickfactor 22 celebration at The Bell House, will be back in the U.S. in July for Merge Record's 25th Anniversary. The band have just announced a short East Coast tour around their Merge 25 appearance, and those dates include a stop at Brooklyn's Baby's All Right on July 19. Tickets for that show are on sale now.

As mentioned, Merge is reissuing The Clientele's genuinely wonderful 2000 album, Suburban Light, as a two-disc special edition which is out May. (Preorder yours.) Before heading to America, The Clientele will play the London edition of Chickfactor 22 at The Lexington on July 11 with Birdie (former Dolly Mixture singer Deborah Wykes' band with husband/filmmaker Paul Kelly), and twee heroes Would-Be-Goods. All tour dates are listed below...

Continue reading "The Clientele touring around Merge 25, NYC included (dates)"

Photos by Greg Cristman

The Clientele @ The Bell House, 3/21/2014
The Clientele

chickfactor: what has the clientele been up to? are you back together for good or just a few shows?

alisdair maclean (the clientele): I've been slowly and painfully writing a novel, and playing in amor de días. mark has moved into a canal boat and is tuning pianos. james has been growing chillis and playing bass for comet gain. ¶ last year I wrote a couple of songs that sounded more clientele than amor de días and it coincided with an offer for the old lineup to play a festival in denmark, which we decided to do for fun. then merge asked us to record a song or two for their 25th-anniversary 7″ singles club so we had a chance to record together again. that's all so far.

why was it important to reissue suburban light?

again, it was merge's decision, as part of their 25-year anniversary reissues series. I over-listened to that record when we mixed it the first time round and I got sick of the songs. james and I were talking about how frustrating that whole time was, we kept losing drummers and we wanted those songs to be on the radio but we were in a little studio trying to cut out the hiss on the tape by sliding the faders up and down. every sound engineer we met tried to make us sound like radiohead. ¶ coming back to it was really positive though--we unearthed a lot of stuff everyone had forgotten. It was weird being in a room and hearing our younger selves bantering on tape. I think the reissue does it justice, and it seems to be a lot of people's favourite clientele record so hopefully it will be enjoyed. - [chickfactor]

Chickfactor 22 happened last week (March 20 & 21), the Friday show featuring the recently reunited The Clientele who were sporting the trio line-up of the group that hadn't played together live in nine years. That same line-up will play Merge 25 in North Carolina this July, and their classic 2000 album, Suburban Light, is getting a reissue this year via Merge with new artwork and a disc's worth of outtakes. That's out May 13 and you can preorder it now.

Also on the Friday Chickfactor 22 bill were fellow Merge band Versus who played mostly new material, but invited up former bandmember Patrick Ramos and Mascott's Kendall Meade during "Blade of Grass." There was also the very entertaining Barbara Manning, and a one-off reunion of early '00s Slumberland band The Saturday People (featuring Pam Berry of Black Tambourine and Glo Worm). More pictures from the second night of Chickfactor 22 below....

Continue reading "The Clientele played 'Chickfactor 22' at The Bell House with Versus, Barbara Manning and The Saturday People (pics)"

by Bill Pearis

WH

Scottish singer/songwriter Dan Willson will release New Gods, his second album as Withered Hand next week (3/25) via Slumberland. It's a sparkling collection of literate pop, and the record features appearances Black Tambourine's Pam Berry, Eugene Kelly of The Vaselines and members of Belle & Sebastian and Frightened Rabbit. It's a really lovely album. We're premiering a stream of the entire album which you can listen to below.

Withered Hand just played SXSW and he'll be in NYC this week for the first night of Chickfactor 22 at The Bell House on Thursday (3/20) with The Jim Ruiz Set, Lilys and Amor de Dias. Joining him onstage at this show are Pam Berry and Kenny Anderson (aka King Creosote) which should make for a special show. Tickets are still available.

Flyer for Chickfactor 22 (designed by Tae Won Yu) and the Withered Hand album stream, below...

Continue reading "stream Withered Hand's new album, see him at Chickfactor 22 this week w/ King Creosote and Pam Berry in his band"

by Bill Pearis

The Clientele
IMAGE

Nice to see that indie zine chickfactor is having a third birthday party -- "chickfactor 22" -- at Brooklyn's The Bell House on March 20 & 21. Headlining the second night are The Clientele, who went on "indefinite hiatus" in 2011 (and haven't played NYC since the year before that); frontman Alasdair MacLean's more current group, Amor de Dias, which is a collaboration with Pipas' Lupe Núñez-Fernández, will play on the first night.

The 3/20 show is headlined by Withered Hand, with sets from Jim Ruiz Set (who has played all three years) and Lilys. The 3/21 show also features Versus, onetime SF Seals singer Barbara Manning and DC area indiepop group The Saturday People (who haven't played in a long time). Tickets go on sale Monday (2/3) at noon, and are $20 for each night in advance and $25 at the door. A $40 two-day pass is available too. You can buy them through Other Music in addition to online.

The Clientele line-up for the chickfactor show will be Maclean, James Hornsey on bass and Mark Keen on drums and this iteration hasn't played together since 2005. The Clientele also have a song on Merge Records' Or Thousands of Prizes 7" subscription, part of the label's 25th anniversary.

Withered Hand
withered

Withered Hand, aka Edinburgh singer-songwriter Dan Willson, has a new album, titled New Gods, out March 25 via Slumberland. The new LP features guest appearances by Black Tambourine singer (and chickfactor co-founder) Pam Berry, Eugene Kelly of The Vaselines and members of Belle & Sebastian and Frightened Rabbit.You can stream "Horshoe" and watch an album trailer below. Withered hand will be over for SXSW so look out for him there as well.

Continue reading "The Clientele, Withered Hand, Lilys, Versus, Barbara Manning & more playing "chickfactor 22" in March"

by Bill Pearis

pastels

Glaswegian indie stalwarts The Pastels released Slow Summits this week via Domino Records and it's an appropriate title for the band's first new album in 16 years. (Not counting the one they made with Japanese group Tenniscoats a few years back.) Recorded with John McEntire, the new record was made with core members Stephen McRobbie and Katrina Mitchell and features guest appearances from members of Teenage Fanclub (TFC's Gerard Love is actually in the band these days), former Pastel Annabel "Aggi" Wright, two-thirds of To Roccoco Rot, and Tenniscoats. The record doesn't pull any surprises, maybe not as shambolic as they were once known for, but that's a good thing. It's the kind of sunny, fuzzy, heartfelt pop the Pastels are known for. You can stream it on Rdio and Spotify and you can watch the video for single "Check Your Heart" below.

As mentioned, The Pastels will be here in a couple weeks for Chickfactor 21, playing The Bell House on June 13 with Dump, The Jim Ruiz Set, Lois and "surprise guests." Tickets for that show are still available. They have added another NYC-area show happening while they're here at Maxwell's in Hoboken on June 15 with The Condo Fucks (aka Yo La Tengo). Maybe at that show we'll get a group version of Daniel Johnston's "Speeding Motocycle" which they've both covered. Tickets are on sale for that show too.

Continue reading "The Pastels released 'Slow Summits,' playing Maxwell's with The Condo Fucks after Chickfactor 21"

by Bill Pearis

The Pastels
Pastels

we had *so much fun* at chickfactor 20 at the bell house in brooklyn, the idea of waiting another ten years seemed too painful too endure. so we made another festival for you! showtime is prompty at 8pm. you may miss a special guest if you get there at 8:10!
Indie pop zine chickfactor is putting on another festival at The Bell House on June 11, 12 and 13 with a line-up that includes The Pastels, Future Bible Heroes, The Cannanes, Aluminum Group, The Jim Ruiz Set and more.

This will be the first Pastels show (6/13) in NYC since 1997 (if memory serves, the last one was at Angel Orensanz Center opening for Belle & Sebastian). The Pastels' new album, Slow Summits, will be out a couple weeks prior (June 11) and you can stream new single "Check Your Heart" below.

As for Future Bible Heroes (Stephin Merrit and Christopher Ewen) who play on 6/12, their new album is out June 8 on Merge. Before you get too excited, do note that Stephin Merrit may or may not appear with them. But it will definitely be Christopher Ewen and singer Claudia Gonson.

Tickets ($25) are on sale now for each night (6/11, 6/12, 6/13), and there are 100 three-day passes ($70) available as well.

Additionally, there will be a retrospective of filmmaker Paul Kelly's work on June 15 at NYU's Michelson Theater, including his Felt/Denim documentary Lawrence of Belgravia, the Dolly Mixture documentary, and his three collaborations with Saint Etienne, Finisterre, What Have You Done Today, Mervyn Day? and This is Tomorrow. This will be free and more info is here.

Chickfactor 21 happens less than two weeks after NYC Popfest, making it a very busy time for lovers of indiepop.

Full Chickfactor 21 line-up below...

Continue reading "The Pastels, Future Bible Heroes, Lilys, Aluminum Group and more playing 'chickfactor 21' in June (tix on sale)"

Merchandise at WIERD, September 2012 (more by Phil Maler)
Merchandise

Freelance writer and DJ Maria Sherman gave us a list of her favorites of 2012, including top shows and her favorite label. Check out her list below.

On that list is Merchandise's performance at 538 Johnson, one of the few early performances to feature now-permanent drummer Elsner Nino (also of Shoxx). The new-look Merchandise will perform twice at 285 Kent this week, including tonight's show WITH Night Sins, Pharmakon, Herzog Rising AND Shoxx.

Maria Sherman's Best of 2012 and a video of Merchandise from 538 Johnson earlier this year, below...

Continue reading "Merchandise are now with drummer; Maria Sherman tells us her Favorites From 2012 (Merchandise with drummer included)"

by Bill Pearis

Chickfactor #17 with Grass Widow on the cover
Grass Widown Chickfactor

Despite Hurricane Sandy playing havoc with area airports, San Francisco trio Grass Widow are here and kick off an Easterly North American tour tonight (11/2) in NYC at 285 Kent with Royal Baths and Habibi also on the bill. $10 gets you in at the door. The band were last here for the Northside fest back in June. All tour dates are listed below.

Meanwhile, Grass Widow are the cover stars for all-lower-case "legendary indie nerd bible" chickfactor's first new issue in over ten years. The issue will also features interviews with Sharon Van Etten, Black Tamborine, Frankie Rose, and many more. You can pre-order the issue via Kickstarter now and get cool extras if you care to pledge extra, or just pick it up at Other Music or other locations when it comes out later this year.

Grass Widow also recently recorded a Daytrotter session which you can listen to here and their new album, Internal Logic, is highly recommended too. You can watch the video for the album's "Goldilocks Zone" below.

Continue reading "Grass Widow launch tour tonight in NYC, on the cover of new issue of 'chickfactor'"

by Bill Pearis

Stevie Jackson at The Bell House, April 2012 (more by Dominick Mastrangelo)
Stevie Jackson

Belle & Sebastian's Stevie Jackson is a genuine charmer. Headlining the final night of Chickfactor 20: For the Love of Pop at The Bell House, he did much of the set solo (and with a scraggly beard and a bushy head of hair, Jackson looked a lot like Angel from The Rockford Files) and held the crowd's attention the whole time, performing a mix of Belle & Sebastian songs (not necesarilly his own), songs from his new solo album (I Can't Get No) Stevie Jackson, and covers (including a surprisingly great take on Elton John's "Rocket Man"). He's also a master of between-song banter and an audience participation leader. It was a great end to the three-day festival that felt more like a party than a series of concerts.
Belle & Sebastian's Stevie Jackson was last here for the chickfactor 20 celebration back in April. He's back in the U.S. for more chickfactor shows, this time on the West Coast, and while here is fitting in another NYC show which happens TONIGHT (8/28) at The Living Room. Tickets are $10 and still available. Stevie's got a few other U.S. dates as well and those are all listed below.

While on the subject of chickfactor, in addition to the West Coast shows in Los Angeles and San Francisco, they'll be doing one in London on November 16 - 18, with The Pastels, Would Be Goods, Amor de Dias and The Aislers Set, Tender Trap, Pipas, Bridget St. John, The Real Tuesday Weld, Legendary Jim Ruiz Group, Harvery Williams, and The Starfolk... plus a film screening and quiz night. More info is here.

And in more chickfactor news, this fall the pop zine will publish issue #17, its first new issue in a decade. That's exciting news.

Continue reading "Belle & Sebastian's Stevie Jackson playing NYC tonight; more 'chickfactor 20' shows on West Coast and London"

photos by Dominick Mastrangelo; words by Bill Pearis

Stevie Jackson
Stevie Jackson

Belle & Sebastian's Stevie Jackson is a genuine charmer. Headlining the final night of Chickfactor 20: For the Love of Pop at The Bell House, he did much of the set solo (and with a scraggly beard and a bushy head of hair, Jackson looked a lot like Angel from The Rockford Files) and held the crowd's attention the whole time, performing a mix of Belle & Sebastian songs (not necesarilly his own), songs from his new solo album (I Can't Get No) Stevie Jackson, and covers (including a surprisingly great take on Elton John's "Rocket Man"). He's also a master of between-song banter and an audience participation leader. It was a great end to the three-day festival that felt more like a party than a series of concerts.

For about a third of the set, Jackson was backed by Honey Bunch, fronted by Jeffrey Underhill who also spent time in Velvet Crush, whose brand of Byrdsian guitar pop has been going on and off since the late '80s. Like the night before, I didn't get there till late so I missed The Softies, The Pines, The Ladybug Transistor and unannounced openers Franklin Bruno and Fan Modine. But we have pictures from the whole night, along with videos of The Softies and The Pines courtesy of Bleary Eyed Brooklyn. Click through for that.

Continue reading "Chickfactor 20 @ the Bell House (night 3 pics/video/review) -- Stevie Jackson, Honey Bunch, The Softies & more"

photos by Dominick Mastrangelo; words by Bill Pearis

The Aislers Set - April 11, 2012
Aislers Set

The second night of Chickfactor's three day 20th Anniversary may not have had the one-two punch of the previous evening's reformed Black Tambourine and Small Factory, but it did have The Aislers Set who hadn't played in NYC (or much of anywhere else) in nearly ten years. Amy Linton and Wyatt Cusik came prepared, however, with a nine-strong Aislers Set that sounded so good it made me want another album. BlearyEyed Brooklyn got some great video of their set which is watchable below.

Undercard duo Pipas were pretty charming, making good use of a iPad as backing band. Lupe Núñez-Fernandez spends more time with Amor de Dias lately, so it was nice to hear these two again as I haven't seen them perform since the first NYC Popfest back in 2007.

I was late arriving to the Bell House that night and missed unannounced openers Franklin Bruno, LD Beghtol and True Love Always' John Lindaman. I was also dismayed to find Bridget St. John and The Legendary Jim Ruiz Group had switched places on the bill. I am a huge fan of Ruiz' 1995 album O Brother Where Art Thou?, and my heart sunk a little to get to the Bell House right as he was saying "thanks and goodnight." He's making a new album as we speak so hopefully he'll make his way out of Minneapolis again soon. Until then, there are videos below.

St. John is legendary in her own right as 1971's Songs for the Gentle Man is a pastoral folk classic. She was given a long set, and though it was lovely, it was maybe just a little too gentle for me and I checked out to the other room for most of it.

Click through for lots more pictures from all the night's performers and video too.

Continue reading "Chickfactor 20 @ the Bell House (night 2 pics/video/review) -- Aislers Set, Pipas, Bridget St. John, Jim Ruiz & more"

photos by Dominick Mastrangelo; words by Bill Pearis

Dump

"I feel like we're some weird meat stuck between two pieces of amazing bread." Small Factory drummer Phoebe Summerquash was referring to her band's placement on the bill between Versus and reformed indiepop legends Black Tambourine at Night One of CF*2012: for the love of pop! The three night event at The Bell House celebrated the 20th Anniversary of the '90s-era zine and co-founder Gail O'Hara has gotten a lot of bands to reform/come out of hiding just for the occasion. "Someone said I am like the mafia," she joked. "No one can say no to me!"

Small Factory haven't played in 17 years but, despite Pheobe's protests, the trio sounded like no time had passed whatsoever and were the clear highlight of night one for this reviewer, a justification of the entire three-day shindig. Songs like "Hopefully," "What to Want" and "Suggestions" haven't aged a bit and the band was together and rockin'. (They also played Cake Shop on Friday.) Small Factory are also in some ways the quintessential chickfactor band. The have a song called "Versus Tape" and their cover of Lois Maffeo's "Valentine" had the entire audience singing. If there was a snapshot of the whole night, that was it.

Lois Maffeo, whose 1993 album Strumpet is a Clinton-era indie rock classic, did her own set earlier in the night, playing a few songs solo before bringing out "The Lois Plus": original drummer Molly Neuman and Heavenly's Peter Momtchiloff on electric guitar. She was a real charmer and the Strumpet-era songs really hold up. Lois is also a very funny person. "I'm so glad I made music in the '90s," she said. "'Magazine' is easy to rhyme. I have trouble working 'Tumblr' into my lyrics."

Versus, who are still a highly functioning band with a recent album on Merge, gave, unsurprisingly the tightest set of the evening but I'll admit to not paying that close attention, as I've seen them probably eight times in the last four years. Richard Balyut looked very Easter Sunday dapper in suit and bowtie.

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Black Tambourine @ the Bell House
Black Tambourine

Headliners Black Tambourine were fun but felt more like you were watching some friends' pick-up band at a party. Which was essentially what happened. The instrument switching between Archie Moore, Brian Nelson and Mike Schulman every few songs felt arbitrary, like the all wanted their turn on drums, bass and guitar.

Which isn't to say it was bad at all. It was fun, and clearly they were having a blast. Schulman, in particular, tore into what ever instrument he was playing. And when Moore was on drums -- usually the more gothy, tribal songs (okay maybe it wasn't totally arbitrary) -- they sounded pretty great. Singer Pam Berry seemed nervous, but her voice was clear and as pretty as ever. And, as chickfactor founder Gail O'Hara said in her introduction, you could actually hear the vocals this time around. I never saw them back in the day, so I'll take her word on that.

In addition to BT classics like "Throw Aggi Off the Bridge," "For Ex-Lovers Only" and "We Can't Be Friends," the band did a number of covers including Love's "Can't Explain," The Ramones' "I Wanna Be Your Boyfriend," and "Dream Baby Dream" by Suicide. Rose Melberg came out to sing Strawberry Switchblade's "Since Yesterday" which had the place dancing. It was a genuine party atmosphere.

The night, which was hosted wittily by Gaylord Fields, started with two unannounced guests. The first was James McNew's Dump who played a low-key set that included a great cover of Prince's "Pop Life." And then Mark Robinson came out to excited cheers to do solo electric versions of Unrest's "Yes She is My Skinhead Girl" and "Isabel".

The chickfactor anniversary party continued on Wednesday with headliners The Aislers Set, Pipas, personal faves The Legendary Jim Ruiz Group and Bridget St. John and more, and then ended Thursday night... but more about those nights later.

Lots more photos and some videos of the first night's fun are after the jump....

Continue reading "Chickfactor 20 @ the Bell House (night 1 pics/video/review) -- Small Factory, Black Tambourine, Dump, Versus & more"

by Bill Pearis

DOWNLOADBlack Tambourine - What's Your Game? (MP3)

Black Tambourine at Artsphere, Washington DC (via Sammich's instagram)
Black Tambourine

Between most songs in Black Tambourine's set, Mike Schulman, Archie Moore, and (Washington City Paper staffer) Brian Nelson switched off between guitar, bass, and percussion. Singer Pam Berry, lectern in tow, stayed in the center--and because it was true to the original recordings, it was OK that her voice was a little low in the mix. Everything was loud, fast, and feedback-strewn. About 5 percent of the audience was absolutely flipping out. Seventy to 80 percent was mostly flipping out, but with less flailing. "We've practiced three times in a row, which is three more times in a row than we'd ever practiced before," Moore said after the show. [Washington City Paper]
Black Tambourine are in the greater New York area, having played Maxwell's last night (with Fan Modine and Rose Melberg) and will headline tonight's first of three chickfactor 20th anniversary shows at The Bell House. Tonight (4/10 with Small Factory, Versus, the Lois Plus) and tomorrow (4/11 with The Aisler's Set, Pipas, Bridget St. John, The Legendary Jim Ruiz Group) are sold out but you can still get tickets to Thursday's closing show (4/12) with Stevie Jackson (Belle & Sebastian), Honey Bunch, The Pines, The Softies).

For those going tonight, there are two unannounced special guests opening the show, so get there at 8PM sharp! Black Tambourine's new EP of Ramones covers (download "What's Your Game?" above) isn't out till May 15 but I wouldn't be surprised if it was at the merch table tonight.

Additionally, for those Small Factory fans who couldn't get tickets tonight (or are maybe going to see Pulp), the reformed Rhode Islanders play Cake Shop on Friday (4/13) with Air Waves.

Click through to see the lovely poster for the chickfactor anniverary, done by Tae Won Yu (who did the art for Built to Spill's Perfect from Now On and Keep it Like a Secret).

Continue reading "Black Tambourine played D.C. & Maxwell's, playing 1st of 3 chickfactor anniversary shows in NYC (tonight @ Bell House)"

by Bill Pearis

DOWNLOAD: Small Factory - Merry Go Round (MP3)

Small Factory

If you didn't get tickets to the opening night (4/10) of the chickfactor 20th anniversary shows at the Bell House but would still like to see Small Factory play in New York, they're playing Cake Shop on Friday, April 13 with Air Waves.

One of the quintessential '90s indiepop bands, Small Factory formed in 1991 in Providence, RI and released two albums before breaking up in 1995. The record to seek out, however, is their 1996 singles comp The Industrial Evolution that culls the trio's many 7" from such labels as Slumberland, Bus Stop, Simple Machines and Pop Narcotic which really exemplifies the band's happy-sad folk pop style. You can download "Merry Go Round" (from one of their Slumberland singles) at the top of this post.

The first two nights of the chickfactor anniversary fest are sold out but you can still get tickets to the Thursday, April 12 night featuring Stevie Jackson, Honey Bunch, the Pines, The Softies and "special guests" not yet announced.

by Bill Pearis

DOWNLOAD: Black Tambourine - What's Your Game? (MP3)

Black Tambourine back in the day...
Black Tambourine

The first night of chickfactor 2012: for the love of pop, which features sets from reunited Black Tambourine and Small Factory, sold out pretty quick, so Black Tambourine have added another show at Maxwells on Monday April 9 for those who didn't get tickets. It's with Fan Modine and Rose Melberg (Tiger Trap/Softies/Go Sailor) and tickets are still on sale and still available.

To commemorate chickfactor's 20th birthday, Black Tambourine have also recorded an EP of Ramones covers which will be released as a double 7" on Slumberland on May 15. Says the Slumberland press release:

It took a pretty special occasion to bring Black Tambourine out of retirement, even temporarily, and the 20th birthday of BT singer Pam Berry's Chickfactor magazine is definitely such an occasion. When the band were discussing the rather complicated logistics (members scattered across two continents) for the reunion shows, the thought of maybe doing some new recordings came to mind. The band quickly agreed that a tribute to one their favorite bands would be a fun project, and of course the Ramones jumped to the top of the list.

After choosing which songs to work on, the band recorded using the same methodology as they did for the bonus tracks on their self-titled 2010 compilation LP. The gentlemen in the band convened in Maryland to lay down the music, the rough mixes were sent to Pam in London so she could add her inimitable vocals, and then the resulting recordings were sent back to Maryland for Archie to mix.

The final result is OneTwoThreeFour, a double 7" and download EP featuring Black Tambourine's versions of four of their most-loved Ramones tunes.

You can download Black Tambourine's cover of "What's Your Game" (from the Ramones' 1977's LP Leave Home) which features backing vocals from the Rinettes (aka Linda Smith, Rose Melberg, Dee Dee from Dum Dum Girls and Jenny Robbins from Honeymoon Diary). You can also stream it below.

In other chickfactor news, in addition to the Maxwell's show, the 20th anniversary party has added a show in Portland on May 30 at the Bunk Bar, with Barbara Manning, Joe Pernice, The Softies and Selector Dub Narcotic (Calvin Johnson in DJ mode).

Speaking of Joe Pernice, he'll appear in NYC at City Winery as part of John Wesley Harding's Cabinet of Wonders with Meg Baird (Espers), Bhi Bhiman, Sloane Crosley, A.M.Homes, Eugene Mirman, and Sondre Lerche on March 10th. Tickets are on sale.

Though the first night of the 3-day Bell House fest is sold out, you can still get tickets to the May 11 show (Legendary Jim Ruiz, Aislers Set, Pipas, Bridget St John) and the May 12 show (The Pines, The Softies, Stevie Jackson, Honeybunch).

There's also chickfactor shows in Arlington, VA's Artsphere on April 6 (Stevie Jackson, Frankie Rose, Honebunch, Dot Dash) and April 7 (Black Tambourine, Lilys, Fan Modine, Lorelei).

Click through for the stream of Black Tambourine's Ramones cover, plus cover art to the new EP...

Continue reading "Black Tambourine add chickfactor show at Maxwell's, releasing EP of Ramones covers"

by Bill Pearis

chickfactor #1 with cover stars Small Factory
Chickfactor

chickfactor will celebrate its 20-year anniversary with five blissful nights of sparkling indie pop on the Northeast Corridor of the USA (three in NY; two in DC) including the first shows in years by Black Tambourine, Small Factory, Pipas, The Aislers Set, A Girl Called Eddy, The Softies, The Lois Plus, The Legendary Jim Ruiz Group and Fan Modine and rare performances from such pop luminaries asStevie Jackson (Belle & Sebastian), Frankie Rose, Lilys, Lorelei, Dot Dash, Versus, Bridget St John and Honey Bunch.

chickfactor started in 1992 in D.C. and New York by pop-loving maniacs Pam Berry and Gail O'Hara, who used to travel up and down the East Coast seeing Small Factory, Honey Bunch, the Wedding Present and any other fine indie-pop bands of the era. We are spoiled silly and lucky as all get-out to be able to present this super-stellar line-up. Get your ticket fast, do not dilly-dally!

Those who followed indiepop in the '90s most certainly read (and probably still have their copies of) fabled 'zine chickfactor, which was written all in lower-case and was read sideways like a calendar. Stephin Merritt was among the regular contributors and it was fun, funny and turned a lot of folks on to cool new sounds like Black Tambourine, Lois Maffeo, Small Factory, The Legendary Jim Ruiz Group, Tiger Trap and many more. Stevie Jackson wrote a song about it for the second Belle & Sebastian album, maybe you heard it.

For chickfactor's 20th anniversary, founders Gail O'Hara and Pam Berry have put together a five-day, two-city festival that gathers many of the zine's most loved bands, many of whom haven't performed in 15 or more years. It happens April 6 and 7 at the Artisphere in Arlington, Virginia and then in NYC April 10 -12 at The Bell House (Maybe some of you went to the 10th anniversary show at Fez?).

Tickets for the Bell House are on sale today (1/12) noon and are $25 for individual nights (4/10, 4/11, 4/12) or $70 for a three day pass.

The shows shows break down like this:

April 6 (Artispace, Arlington, VA): Stevie Jackson, Frankie Rose, Honey Bunch, The Dot Dash

April 7 (Artispace, Arlington, VA): Black Tambourine, Lilys, Fan Modine, Lorelei

April 10 (The Bell House, Brooklyn): Black Tambourine, Small Factory, Versus, The Lois Plus + Special Guests.

April 11 (The Bell House, Brooklyn): The Aislers Set, Pipas, Bridget St. John, The Legendary Jim Ruiz Group

April 12 (The Bell House, Brooklyn): Stevie Jackson, Honey Bunch, A Girl Called Eddy, The Softies

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Black Tambourine (first East Coast shows in 20 years) and The Aislers Set (first in almost 10 years) are the big draws here, but this writer is especially excited about folk pop trio Small Factory who haven't played together in 15 years and Minneapolis' The Legendary Jim Ruiz Group whose 1995 album O Brother Where Art Thou? is a lost '90s classic (they're promising a new album this year too).

This comes a mere month before the sixth annual NYC Popfest (happening May 17 - 20) which means this spring is likely to be a very good year for indiepop fans. NYC Popfest hasn't divulged any of its line-up, but I hear it may be their most ambitious yet.

Click though for a detailed rundown of the chickfactor fest line-up, plus some vintage videos from the groups involved.

Continue reading "Black Tambourine, Aislers Set, Small Factory, Legendary Jim Ruiz Group & more reuniting for chickfactor festival"