>> This is our final post of the year. See you in 2009.
>> For those of you not monitoring our Twitter feed last week, Philly based shoegaze quartet Relay has been reborn as Arc In Round. The re-christened act will likely make a big splash with its new material during a brief jaunt around the country in January with the fiery Scottish four Frightened Rabbit. As if that supporting slot wasn't auspicious enough, Arc In Round will also play one of the planned Swirlies reunion dates in late February (we've posted all the Arc In Round dates below). As far as the new music goes, get thee over to the band's MySpace casa forthwith and stream "2" and "Sounder." We're pleased with the former in particular, as its bending guitar chords and generally ethereal awesomeness reminds us very much of Lorelei's shuddering "Mimesis" (from the groundbreaking Spin-Art comp ...One Last Kiss). Arc In Round recorded its new tracks at Strange Weather in Brooklyn, and we're hoping there is a new EP or full-length in the offing; Relay's last two releases were issued on Bubble Core (whose own comp The First Bubble Core Records Label Sampler is also quite good, incidentally). We featured Relay and its practice space in our occasion series Show Us Yours here in Aug. 2006; we reviewed the band's Feb. 2007 show at TT The Bear's right here.
01/16 -- Johnny Brenda’s -- Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
01/19 -- Rock and Roll Hotel -- Washington, DC
01/20 -- Talking Head -- Baltimore, Maryland
01/22 -- Courtyard Cafe -- Urbana, Illinois
01/23 -- Maintenance Shop -- Ames, Iowa
01/24 -- Empty Bottle -- Chicago, Illinois
01/26 -- Carnegie Mellon University -- Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
02/26 -- Johnny Brenda’s -- Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
>> Nine-piece chamber pop upstarts Evening Magazine -- also out of Philadelphia -- are slated to issue a debut EP The Ride Across Lake Constance Jan. 27 on Ohso Records. The collective is helmed by former BC Camplight guitarist David Disbrow, who along with recording engineer Kevin Francis and others has created a multifaceted, widescreen and technicolor collection. The desperate tone of lead track "Apple Eye" is more reminiscent of Funeral-era Arcade Fire than most everything else that has been compared to the highly regarded Canadians in recent memory -- but it is slightly more delicate, too: the foundation is acoustic guitar and snare, but horns and burbling space synths provide surprising inflections. Evening Magazine is recording a full-length set in the same North Philadelphia shed in which the EP -- a very strong calling card, the totality of which can be streamed at the act's MySpace wigwam -- was crafted. We'll keep an eye out for release information on that.
Evening Magazine --
[right click and save as]
[stalk the band's MySpace to see when the EP goes on sale]
>> Rock Sellout here was the first to indicate to us that clicky clicky faves Superchunk will issue something called Sur La Bouch -- Live In Montreal on Jan. 13. The set -- the fourth volume in the band's Clambakes series -- contains a live bootleg of the band performing live on March 22 of that year, when the indie rockers were out supporting their amazing release On The Mouth. The performance was at the club Backstreet, and it was recorded by a chap named Howard Billerman, who apparently played drums on Arcade Fire's aforementioned Funeral and currently owns and engineers recordings at Hotel 2 Tango Studios in Montreal. On The Mouth was one of those records that spurred our ever-expanding interest in indie rock, so we're excited to hear a recording from this period. We saw Superchunk for the first time in the summer of '93 or '94, perhaps headlining over Velocity Girl and Sunny Day Real Estate. Or perhaps not -- sometimes our memories get all mixed up.
>> We just got turned on to the site Bandstand Busking via an email from New York dream pop duo Asobi Seksu, who recently were featured on the site here doing stripped-down bet very affecting versions of "Gliss," "Merry Christmas, I Don't Want To Fight Tonight" and "Walking On The Moon." The site currently features about a dozen other sessions from various bands recorded around the greater London area, but the ones you definitely need to look at are these three clips of Frightened Rabbit fronter Scott Hutchison doing acoustic versions of "My Backwards Walk," "Poke" and "I Feel Better" right here. Hot stuff.