Eugene Chadbourne, Pants Yell!, Comet Gain, Borts Minorts & more in This Week in Indie
DOWNLOAD: Comet Gain - Skinny Wolves (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Comet Gain - Why I Try To Look So Bad (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Comet Gain - Love Without Lies (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Crystal Stilts - Love is a Wave (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Pants Yell! - Magenta and Green (MP3)
by Bill Pearis
The big news this week is this Sunday's (4/12) Comet Gain show at Music Hall of Williamsburg. Tickets are $13 and still available. Crystal Stilts, who are opening for them on all three of their U.S. dates, wrote this about them in a MySpace post:
It is our tremendous honor to be reminding you all the we will be playing a series of shows over the next few days with Comet Gain, about whom we could string together some words that would inevitably fail to say what it is that makes them the best band in the world. We tried, failed and decided to spare you the embarrassment of that rambling. Perhaps in that failure there is something that proves the point but that isn't worth delving into. Suffice to say, the best they are and we are floored to be playing with them, so do come out, it has been far too long since they have graced these shores with their presence and it is certainly not to be missed.
As you may have heard, Crystal Stilts just did a killer Daytrotter session that included two new songs, one of which, "Sycamore Tree," has been a highlight of their live shows for some time. (Their new Slumblerland single "Love is a Wave" is great too. You can download it at the top of this post. Also playing with Comet Gain and Crystal Stilts are Philadelphia darkwave synth trio Cold Cave who I'm looking forward to seeing for the first time. All three played last night in DC and tonight (4/9) in Philadelphia.
Almost as exciting for me is that Boston's Pants Yell! are playing Saturday (4/11) at Dead Herring. Their most recent album, Alison Statton (named after Young Marble Giants lead singer), was one of 2007's best records you might not have heard. This is indie pop done just about perfectly, great songs, arrangements full of horns and glockenspiel yet never falling into the dreaded "twee" abyss. They were one of the best bands I saw at last year's NYC Popfest, where I wrote at the time, "On their excellent third album from late last year, Alison Statton, they sound polite, but live it's more hyper-kinetic. You could even say they rocked." They'll play this year's Popfest too (on 5/16 with Radio Dept) but, despite living as close as they do, don't play NYC all that often, so I highly recommend going. The whole bill at Dead Herring is a good one, with Brooklyn locals Knight School, Sisters, and World Atlas.
As mentioned elsewhere on this site, Eugene Chadbourne will be playing the Issue Project Room next week, but first he'll be playing an early show on Saturday (3/11) at Cake Shop. The 1991 edition of The Trouser Press Record Guide says this about him, "On his compulsive own, the guitarist/leader of the late, lamented Shockabilly has spewed forth a ceaseless stream of records and cassettes that easily represent the oddest version of country and folk music ever." From what I can tell, Chadbourne hasn't really mellowed or slowed down since. Chadbourne has collaborated with a Who's Who of improvisational/experimental musicians, including Marc Ribot, Henry Kaiser, John Zorn, and Fred Frith, as well as bands like Camper Van Beethoven and They Might Be Giants... many of whom performed at the two-week Chadfest in August 2007. I don't claim to follow Chadbourne's career closely, but he is a legend and there is a direct through-line from his work to bands like Animal Collective (who just added another Brooklyn show) and Dirty Projectors (who just released the first track off their new album). A chance to see him up close somewhere like Cake Shop should be a treat.
More shows this weekend: If you're looking for something weird and funny, San Francisco's bizarre Borts Minots is at The Studio at Webster Hall tonight (4/9) with Uni & Her Ukulele, Rachel Trachtenburg and Kiwi comedian Griffin Point.
The Wooden Birds, the new group from American Analog Set's Andrew Kenny, play Mercury Lounge on Friday (4/10). Their record is lovely and I caught them in Austin during SXSW, definitely worth seeing.
Flyer, videos and tour dates after the jump...
Comet Gain - Love Without Lies
Comet Gain/Crystal Stilts/Cold Cave - 2009 Tour Dates
4/9 -- Philadelphia, PA -- Kung Fu Necktie
4/12 -- Brooklyn, NY -- Music hall of Williamsburg
Pants Yell! at Cake Shop, 2008
Pants Yell! 2009 Tour Dates
Apr 11 Dead Herring House Williamsburg, Brooklyn, New York
Apr 17 Middle East Upstairs (with BIG BEAR) Cambridge, Massachusetts
May 16 Bell House (w/ RADIO DEPT) Brooklyn, New York
Eugene Chadbourne - Country Music Improvisation
Eugene Chadbourne 2009 Tour Dates
Apr 11 The Cake Shop New York City, New York
Apr 15 Johnny D's Boston, Massachusetts
Apr 16 The Book Mill Montague, Massachusetts
Apr 19 Issue Project Room Brooklyn, New York
Apr 22 Pyramid Atlantic art space Washington DC, Washington DC
Apr 23 The Wind Up Baltimore, Maryland
May 21 Pilot Light Knoxville, Tennessee
May 22 The Downtown Morristown, Tennessee
May 23 WhoFest! Chattanooga, Texas
May 28 Enemy Chicago, Illinois
May 29 Mother Fool's Madison, Wisconsin
May 30 Private party Green Bay, Wisconsin
Sep 15 Frankfurt Jazzfest Frankfurt
Sep 18 Cafe Bohemian Bremen
Sep 19 Silke Arp Bricht Hannover
Sep 21 Madame Claude's Berlin
Sep 22 Jazz Jamboree Berlin
Sep 26 Klangarten Leipzig
Dec 4 Jazzatelier Ulrichsburg: Paul Lovens Festival Ulrichsburg
Dec 8 The Rhiz Wein
Borts Minorts - Oberon V Titania