August 9, 2010
Today's Hotness: Little Gold, Philistines Jr.
>> One of the more recent Sound Opinions podcasts discussed bands or artists that had "gone off the rails," which is to say the band or artists changed styles or suddenly produced such terrible work that critics Greg Kot and Jim DeRogatis felt betrayed them. We have a similar disappointment with erstwhile, Brooklyn-based indie punk gargantuans Meneguar. As far as we can tell, the quartet never formally broke up, it just dissolved into other acts. The most notable of these is the new-wave-of-American-psych outfit Woods, whose music simply doesn't connect with us. Meneguar's final record The In Hour was a sprawling lo-fi effort that hinted change was coming, but we can't help hoping that eventually Meneguar will reconstitute itself and deliver a lacerating set of angular, guitar-heavy indie rock akin to the contents of Strangers In Our House -- our favorite record of 2007 -- and I Was Born At Night (the band's stunning debut, so nice it was released twice).
Last month brought word that Meneguar guitarist Christian DeRoeck's more recent project Little Gold was releasing a new single and planning to record later this year a sophomore album (Little Gold's debut On The Knife, released in 2009, slipped completely under our radar). And the very good news is that Mr. DeRoeck's music is short sharp bursts of melodic, guitar-centric indie rock. It's not Meneguar, but it has a shambling charm and an edge that is incredibly appealing. Little Gold's "Completely Fucked!" is available now in a limited run of 300 singles pressed onto orange vinyl (!) by Heartbreak Beat. You can download the A-side below; the B side is available for streaming at the Little Gold MySpace cabin right here. We are happy to know that if we can no longer see DeRoeck doing this, at least we have his wonderful Little Gold project to help fill the Meneguar-shaped hole in our heart. Little Gold embarks on a U.S. tour this week, and we've posted the band's full itinerary below (which includes a Louisville date with the wonderful State Champion).
Little Gold -- "Completely Fucked!" -- "Completely Fucked!" b/w "Chainsaw"
[right click and save as]
[buy the Little Gold 7" right here]
08.11 -- Cakeshop -- New York, NY
08.13 -- Garfield Artworks -- Pittsburgh, PA
08.14 -- The Hideout -- Chicago, IL
08.16 -- The Medusa -- Minneapolis, MN
08.17 -- Vaudeville Mews -- Des Moines, IA
08.18 -- Replay Lounge -- Lawrence, KS
08.19 -- The Dairy -- Memphis, TN
08.20 -- Discoteca -- Chattanooga, TN
08.21 -- Skull Alley w/ State Champion -- Louisville, KY
08.22 -- Al's Bar -- Lexington, KY
08.23 -- Kingbee Ground Sound -- Kingbee, KY
08.26 -- Allways Lounge -- New Orleans, LA
08.27 -- Argentum -- Houston, TX
08.28 -- 2908 Cole St -- Austin, TX
08.31 -- YOBS -- Tempe, AZ
09.01 -- Tin Can Alehouse -- San Diego, CA
09.02 -- The Smell -- Los Angeles, CA
09.04 -- Hemlock Tavern -- San Francisco, CA
09.05 -- Mudai Lounge -- Portland, OR
09.07 -- Sunset Tavern -- Seattle, WA
09.08 -- S.S. Josephine -- Seattle, WA
09.11 -- Yellow Feather -- Denver, CO
09.11 -- Rockaway Tavern -- Denver, CO
09.16 -- The Happy Dog -- Cleveland, OH
>> Back when we were music director of the radio station of our small liberal arts college in the mid-'90s, we got our share of free stuff, often just duplicate copies of CDs or records (hello The Bends on vinyl). Most of these extras were jettisoned forthwith because -- even 15 years ago -- there was a lot of crap being serviced to radio, yes, even in the pre-Pro Tools era. Like today we'd take a flyer on certain things, and one that worked out marvelously was The First Bubble Core Records Sampler [Amazon], which featured a bunch of acts that we think were sort of centered around the scene at Yale? Maybe? Anyway, the comp had some amazing cuts, including the explosive and transcendent "Adam's Living Room" by an act called Me + Dave and a few standout cuts by a quirky combo going by the name Philistines Jr. Years later we would learn that the latter act featured now-prominent-recording-guy Peter Katis, whose name you probably recall is attached to records by Interpol, Mobius Band and The National. Anyway, imagine our surprise last week when we learned that Philistines Jr. never actually broke up, and that the act has finally gotten a new record in the can. If A Band Plays In The Woods...? will be released Oct. 5 on the band's own Tarquin Records. The set apparently took 10 years to record (Mr. Katis is quite busy), and you can stream the entire thing on SoundCloud right now, and it is well worth hearing, as strong as any of the early material. Have a listen. If you try just one track, make it "If I Did Nothing But Train For Two Years." No buy link for the set yet, but we expect it will eventually be listed here.