August 22, 2007

Today's Hotness: Lilys, Piebald, Frightened Rabbit

>> Rejoice. We've had a one-day reprieve from our work project, which now starts tomorrow. Here's some odds and sods that have been kicking around for a while.

>> Since we're gaga over the Lilys, you can imagine how pleased we are that the car commercial their music is currently being used in has drawn so much attention (based on the number of Google searches that are hitting :: clicky clicky ::, that is). Coincidentally, we've just encountered some incredibly rare live video of the band via the new, pretty sharp video search thing Chime.TV. The clip atop this item is about 72 seconds of the Lilys doing "Ginger," the tune in the aforementioned car commercial, during the band's all-too-brief 2006 tour supporting the Manifesto release Everything Wrong Is Imaginary. And this is a link to 87 seconds worth of a scorching version of "Touch The Water," the Apples In Stereo tune Lilys have covered for years and which first appeared on the 2001 Selected release on File 13. Or maybe it first appeared on the Send In The Subs bootleg. We'll look into that. Anyway, yeah, the Lilys: they're awesome.

>> We remember Piebald breaking up like five or six years ago, don't we? Well, apparently the Boston emo superheroes are calling it quits again after wrapping their current tour, according to Pun Canoes. Don't care? Then obviously you've never heard the towering rockfest that is "Grace Kelly With Wings," the opening track to 1999's If It Weren't For Venetian Blinds, It Would Be Curtains For Us All. The song starts all (erstwhile label mates) Get Up Kids, and ends all Queen, and it's great. You can download a live version of the cut here, where some cat has posted Piebald's set from the 2001 MacRock fest. Dig it. We've posted the studio version below.

Piebald -- "Grace Kelly With Wings" -- If It Weren't For Venetian Blinds, It Would Be Curtains For Us All
[right click and save as]
[buy Piebald records from EMusic here]

>> You know that Frightened Rabbit single that we noted was right around the corner? AngryApe has some more details about it here, including the fact that the flipside to "Be Less Rude" will be the quasi-title track to the trio's first record, "The Greys." The "Be Less Rude" single streets Sept. 24, and Fat Cat issues a remastered version of the band's debut full-length Sings The Greys in October, if memory serves.

August 21, 2007

From The Admin Cubicle: Man Keeping Us Down

From The Admin CubicleTeam Clicky Clicky has been saddled with a big project at the day job that carries an 8/31 deadline. As such, :: clicky clicky :: will be largely dark through the end of this month. There may be an odd post at the weekend, but we are not optimistic. See you in September. -- The Management

August 20, 2007

That's No Moon, It's A Ringo Deathstarr...

Ringo DeathstarrAfter our initial, breathless assessment of Beaumont, Texas-spawned shoegaze behemoth Ringo Deathstarr here in February, we sort of took our eyes off the ball. It turns out the ball hasn't moved too far in the interim. But a MySpace bulletin from the band today sucked us right back into the trio's world, one that alternately pummels and drifts in beautiful aural shag. The act, led by a fellow named Elliot Frazier, is streaming a new, palindromically titled cut at its MySpace for a limited time. So hit this link and have a listen to "Rats Live On No Evil Star."

The two-year-old Ringo Deathstarr, whose regular lineup changes are detailed in this excellent Austinist interview, is also offering for download at its MySpace hacienda some indispensable tracks. One titled "Your Town" seems to be from the same recording effort as a mysterious and intensely gorgeous RD track we have in our ITunes with no discographical info. The two have identical production values, similar breathy vocals. "Your Town" is a ballad based on layers of guitars, fuzz and murmuring. We're posting an MP3 below to save you the trip to MySpace.

Spoilt Victorian Child Records intends to release in the UK a Ringo Deathstarr EP later this year, and we are eager to hear it. In the Austinist interview linked supra Frazier says the record doesn't have US distro yet, so start saving your nickels for the import. Frazier also says the EP will be self-titled and was to have been mastered late last month. It was recorded at The Bubble in Austin, where apparently The Meat Puppets had just made a record, in case that sorta thing interests you.

Ringo Deathstarr -- "Your Town" -- MySpace download
[right click and save as]
[obsessively click this link to Spoilt Victorian Child Records daily until you can pre-order the planned Ringo Deathstarr EP]

August 18, 2007

Every Band I've Ever Loved Has Let Me Down Eventually

Nosferatu D2, Halloween 2006[Photo CREDIT: Vicky] There are some days when we wish we were the guy who runs the blog Another Form Of Relief, because he turns up amazing music we've never heard of often and, you know, it'd just be easier to cut out the middleman (us). AFOR's most recent post is about the recently defunct Croydon, England duo Nosferatu D2. The fact that the band is no more extends our recent streak of discovering erstwhile UK bands we like a lot to three (the other two being Eddyfink and Distophia). Like :: clicky clicky :: faves Frightened Rabbit, Nosferatu D2 is a brother act, and a duo (although FR started as one dude and ultimately became three dudes). The music -- which constantly references other bands and vomiting in asphyxiating, chain store-filled suburbs -- can be as stark, tense and confessional as early Karate; as misanthropic as vintage Smiths; as obsessed with sickness and decay as Greg Dulli; as desperate and solitary as the aforementioned Frightened Rabbit. In short, this band is the whole package.

Or was. After slogging it out for two years, Nosferatu D2 broke up a couple months ago seemingly at a high point, as their last gig was supporting the hotly tipped septet Los Campesinos! in March (the latter act is now, of course, signed to hip Canadian label Arts + Crafts). That final show was recorded by this fellow and is available for download here. We've haven't gotten to the live tracks yet, but the 10 songs posted for free download at Nosferatu D2's Last.FM page are 1000% quality. Really stunning stuff. While we are supremely disappointed the band is broken up, all is not lost. ND2 guitarist and singer Ben has started a new project called Superman Revenge Squad, which of course AFOR is already all over (read their post here); ND2 drummer Adam is apparently playing in other projects as well. Below are a couple MP3s to entice you, including the undeniable indie geek anthem "A Footnote," but we highly recommend going to the Last.FM pages linked supra and downloading everything you can.

Nosferatu D2 -- "2 People 0 Superpowers" -- Nosferatu D2
Nosferatu D2 -- "A Footnote" -- Nosferatu D2
[right click and save as]

Nosferatu D2: Interweb | MySpace | YouTube | Flickr

August 16, 2007

Perhaps Everyone DID Have It In For Eddyfink...

The late Eddyfink[PHOTO CREDIT: Stew Ruffles] We've been doing a lot of separating the performance from the songwriting lately, particularly as we revisit songs we remember enjoying on radio and mixtapes during our childhood ("Perfect Strangers" by Deep Purple, anyone? Actually, bad example -- that song is awesome). Additionally, we've come across some bands recently that have written great material who aren't presenting it exactly as we'd like. Sure, to a certain extent every band is an acquired taste, and we should just be able to give them all several ample fair shakes. But the truth of the matter is we aren't 11 years old anymore, with scads of time to spend in our rooms staring at the speakers.

Point is, while we have been significantly jazzed by certain songs of bristling British indie rock quartet Eddyfink, an act we discovered one day in July, only to read -- the same day -- that the band had just broken up, we also have some reservations. What's our beef with Eddyfink besides the fact that we didn't get a chance to follow their career at all while it was happening? Well, we think it is the vocal delivery of singer Andrew Pisanu. More use of falsetto than we care for, and occasionally a bit emotional for our tastes. Balancing that out for us, however, are some great songs.

The band's MySpace proclaims it trades in "anthems for the underdog," but we think their best material is deeper and darker than that. The video clip for the track "Do I" opens with a cartoon drawing of a shipwreck and features castaways bleeding blue blood from their mouths. And then there's the excellently titled "Will I Get Through Today Without Being Kicked In The Knickers?" [read our post about that here]. We loved the persecuted paranoia of that song, opening as it does with the ominous line "It's happening again..." before pleading "I can't take this anymore, is there a number I can call, someone to help me through it all?"

Well, imagine our surprise to hear the same white-knuckled urban agoraphobia expressed as brilliantly in a tune the now defunct Eddyfink posted to its MySpace garage more recently called "In For Me." Again, we're a little put off by the vocal delivery. More importantly the song has an absolutely bulletproof lyrical shtick. In the choruses Pisanu lists off the names of ENTIRE TOWNS that have it in for him: "...Nottingham, you know they've got it, Canterbury, they've all got it, Coventry, you know they've got it in... they've all got it in for me..." Pisanu lists TWELVE cities in the UK, and they all have it in for him. Like we said, brilliant. It's pop mixed with urban psychosis, cities as monsters with people for teeth. Incidentally, there is a video for the clip here at YouTube, but it works the funny like an old Men At Work video and kinds of turns us off; however, there are nice shots of the band performing the track spliced in as well. At their best, during its six-year-career Eddyfink was a songwriting force. We're sad to have missed the whole thing, but we're hopeful more recordings will make it to the band's MySpace. For now, here's an MP3 of "In For Me."

Eddyfink -- "In For Me" -- MySpace download
[right click and save as]
[buy Eddyfink songs from ITunes here]

August 15, 2007

Frightened Rabbit Releases Sings The Greys In US Oct. 2

Frightened RabbitIt's been a while since we've talked about brilliant Glaswegian indie trio Frightened Rabbit, but here's some news. The long-awaited US version of the band's 2006 debut Sings The Greys, which has been remastered by Mr. Indie Mastering Guy Alan Douches, will finally be released Oct. 2 on new label Fat Cat. As we reported here in June, Frightened Rabbit is expected to issue a single prior to the re-release of Sings The Greys for the track "Be Less Rude." So that should be out sometime in the next six weeks, in our estimation.

Anyhoo, to celebrate the US issue of the full-length the lads will be returning to the US for a few weeks of dates beginning in mid-October [incidentally, some of the dates listed below are with Pinback, who will be supported in late September by another :: clicky clicky :: fave, The A-Sides -- check out the A-Sides dates here]. Sadly, right now there is no Boston date, but we're hopeful that the band might fill one of those empty nights in the first week of November with a show here in Cambridge, Mass. Maybe they could get an in-store at the Urban Outfitters like the one they had in Austin? Somebody make it happen. Have you heard Frightened Rabbit's live set from SXSW that they've been selling at EMusic for a goodly while now? It's a barnburner, especially the opener "Square 9." To get you back in the mood for Frightened Rabbitamania, here's a version of "Modern Leper" the band was giving away on its MySpace page for a while early this year.

Frightened Rabbit -- "Modern Leper" -- MySpace Download
[right click and save as]
[buy Frightened Rabbit music from EMusic here]

10/15 -- Empty Bottle -- Chicago, Illinois
10/16 -- Pabst Theatre -- Milwaukee, Wisconsin
10/17 -- Fineline Music Cafe -- Minneapolis, Minnesota
10/18 -- Slowdown -- Omaha, Nebraska
10/19 -- Gothic Theatre -- Englewood, Colorado
10/20 -- The Depot -- Salt Lake City, Utah
10/22 -- Showbox Showroom -- Seattle, Washington
10/23 -- Viking Union Multipurpose Room -- Bellingham, Washington
10/25 -- Bimbos 365 Club -- San Francisco, California
10/26 -- Bimbos 365 Club -- San Francisco, California
10/28 -- The Wiltern -- Los Angeles, California
10/30 -- Solar Culture Gallery -- Tucson, Arizona
11/01 -- Emo’s Jr. -- Austin, Texas
11/02 -- Dan’s Bar -- Denton, Texas
11/08 -- Theatre of Living Arts -- Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Previous Frightened Rabbit coverage:

Frightened Rabbit's First American Tour
Show Us Yours #5: Frightened Rabbit
Frightened Rabbit Signs To Fat Cat

August 14, 2007

Today's Hotness: Wannadies, Wicked Farleys, Tony Allen

The Wannadies>> We've been obsessed with our favorite Swedish act The Wannadies since we saw the video for their song "Hit" on MTV Europe a decade ago. Our obsession has been somewhat tempered by the fact that the quintet only had one US release, so virtually all of their records must be purchased from abroad via the Internets. Consequently, at this point we've just gotten the self-titled US release a several of the CD singles released in the UK. With today's exchange rates, we're obviously not buying a lot of their records right now, even though we have a goal of getting all the band's full lengths that use the sleeping people theme we talked about here. The reason we're mentioning all of this is that the band has put together a blog with YouTube links to all of their videos right here. So go there, watch the video for "Hit" -- seriously, this song should have been as big as "Smells Like Teen Spirit" and it pains us every time we watch the video that it was not -- and then check out other clips at your leisure. Some of the early stuff is really bizarre late '80s acoustic pop. Weird. We do love seeing those fashions again, however. Anyway, if you could go to Sweden and buy all the Wannadies records on vinyl you can find for us, we'd be grateful. So what's up with the band now? Well, they've been asking fans to submit tracks for inclusion on a compilation. Wannadies have also recorded new songs it intended to release as a single or EP, but its efforts at releasing the material are as usual being stymied by label stuff.

>> Resurgent blog Built On A Weak Spot has a very nice overview of erstwhile Boston indie rockers The Wicked Farleys. We think we saw the band play a reunion show in our pre-blog days with Logie, and via him we first discovered the band through their inclusion on Holiday Matinee's Pedal Faster, Bicycle Rider compilation from the turn of the century. Built On A Weak Spot has the track from the compilation (with a mix that sounds a little different, we'll have to compare), the excellent "Fitchburg, MA," available for download along with several tracks we've never heard before but about which we are very excited. "Dig The Ring" sounds like an early Lilys cut in places; "Opportune" has a Swirlies kind of edge to it. Anyway, dynamite post, go check it out.

>> If, like us, you didn't know Afro-beat legend Tony Allen from Tony Randall (well, okay, we knew he wasn't Tony Randall) before the renowned drummer joined Damon Albarn's superlative supergroup The Good, The Bad & The Queen, Aurgasm has a couple tunes here to get you caught up. The pair of bumping tracks are from drummer Allen's 2002 release Home Cookin'.

August 13, 2007

Come On Dave, Gimme A Break.

Pop metal legends Van Halen announced its first tour with original fronter David Lee Roth in 22 years today. Please allow us to revert to our ten-year-old selves for one night. Well, and our 33-year-old selves too, apparently. To quote our Feb. 1, 2007 email to fellow participants of Bus Of Rock III: ""'Unchained' Live, with flaming gong action at the end. Holy sh*t this is awesome. The band was never this good again. This is the highlight. FLAMING F*CKING GONG."

August 12, 2007

Today's Hotness: Joy Division, Johnny Foreigner, Distophia

Control>> With the American release of the hotly anticipated Ian Curtis biopic "Control" edging closer, plans have been announced to re-issue post-punk legends Joy Division recordings in expanded editions. Read this NME item for track listings and a bit more information. We got in to Joy Division when cassettes were still a viable format, and as such we don't have these records on CD. As such, we're excited to get these, although we are apprehensive that remixing or remastering might alter the records. We'll see what happens. We're curious what effect if any the death of Factory Records impresario Tony Wilson Friday will have on the release of these reissues. "Control" debuted at Cannes in May; it will have its U.S. premiere Oct. 10 at the Film Forum in New York City. The songs comprising the soundtrack to the film are listed here.

>> Here's your weekly Johnny Foreigner update. The stellar Birmingham, UK noise pop trio did not win the Road To V competition we previously mentioned here. The upside? According to a MySpace post this apparently frees the act from a restriction that required it to remain unsigned while they were involved with the competition. Labels would be idiots not to snatch these guys up. Johnny Foreigner has tons of amazing material, they play tons of gigs, and we expect signing has got to be around the corner.

>> Argh. Another great UK band discovered and found to have broken up in the same day (this previously happened when we discovered Eddyfink last month; more about Eddyfink's brilliant "In For Me" later in the week). This month the find, via a post on the Just Gimmie Indie Rock blog that Johnny Foreigner mentioned in a recent post, is the newly erstwhile, two-MySpaces-having Birmingham quartet Distophia. Based on comments on its MySpace hacienda Distophia seems to have recently broken up. Head here to download the compelling track "Evil Baroness."

>> That A-Sides tour in October we've mentioned previously will be with The Velvet Teen and Say Hi (To Your Mom), which we remember being called simply Say Hi To Your Mom (no parens) when we reviewed their record Ferocious Mopes for Junkmedia here two years ago. According to the most recent news item at its web site, Say Hi To Your Mom is officially changing its name to simply Say Hi as of September and will release a fifth record in early 2008. Anyway, prior to the dates with TVT and Say Hi, The A-Sides will tour out to the west coast supporting vegan posterman and indie rock force of nature Ted Leo. You can check out those dates here. Incidentally, this song never gets old:

Say Hi To Your Mom -- "Let's Talk About Spaceships" -- Numbers And Mumbles
[right click and save as]
[Buy Say Hi records from the band here]

>> This Is Happening To Me has some pics of Dinosaur Jr. in Japan, performing, being mobbed by fans in the streets. Apparently people are just running up to J. Mascis and hugging him? Anyway, cool pictures are here.

August 8, 2007

Review: The Mendoza Line | 30 Year Low [MP3s]

The Mendoza Line -- 30 Year LowIt turns out what seemed like it would be the biggest feel-bad record of the year actually feels pretty good in places. Certainly there are down-in-the-mouth tunes on the final album of new material from long-running indie rock concern The Mendoza Line, the shambling project started by Tim Bracy and Peter Hoffman in Athens, Georgia more than a decade ago. With the dissolution of the marriage that has bound the band's remaining principal songwriters together in The Mendoza Line, the flatly glum tone of Shannon McArdle's album opener "Since I Came" is unsurprising. Even so, as we asserted above, there are cuts on 30 Year Low and its companion set Final Reflections Of The Legendary Malcontent that are absolutely jaunty, particularly Mr. Bracy's imperturbable, Replacements-esque title track. "The unraveling of a grand design..."

So there is a balance -- albeit a slightly uneasy one -- that holds aloft these two records across a fulcrum that wavers between tragicomedy ("Go Shopping") and tragedy ("Withered And Died"). And with some of the songs only the context of the startling announcement of the end of Ms. McArdle and Bracy's marriage lets us know that the two discs contain the sounds of the wheels coming off. The over-driven "31 Candles" or the unabashedly carefree interpretation of the standard "Anything Goes" don't feel weighted down by concerns greater than rocking out and the next drink, respectively. "Now you're rolling down the stairs in a barrel..."

Perhaps the most, ahem, bracing aspect to 30 Year Low etc. is the return of a lackadaisical mania, present in the dysphoric, vertiginous guitars slashing across the stereo field in the final minutes of the pulsing piece of perfection that is the Bracy-sung "I Lost My Taste." As The Mendoza Line's profile grew earlier in this decade the band assumed a traditional formalism. This won, or at least coincided with the arrival of, more than a little acclaim, but in our opinion it came at the cost of the exciting sonic experimentalism of catalogue highlights including the massively under-rated set We're All In This Alone from 2000. There's more of that sort of experimentalism in the howling guitar chords that feed back in the bridge of the aforementioned, sublime ballad "Go Shopping," which is situated in the middle of the second disc next to the stunning original demo for the Slow Dazzle track "Now Or Later Or Never." The latter song was a highlight of the Mendoza Line live set we saw in May [review]. "Now everybody's laughing about the size of your IPO..."

The breadth and depth of material on 30 Year Low and Final Remarks Of The Legendary Malcontent provides a questionably tidy but self-contained (like fraternal twin Capra-esque scenes in snowglobes; like jars full of fireflies) summary of a great, and greatly under-appreciated, American rock band. We expect we'll be hearing more from McArdle and Bracy before too long. Incidentally, the Mendoza Line web site (it seems the MySpace page is no longer) was updated recently with the news that "upcoming Mendoza Line shows will be performed by Timothy Bracy with band." So despite the cancellations we noted here, it would seem Mr. Bracy intends to get out to support 30 Year Low with live dates at some point. For now, enjoy these MP3s. "You were blue chip once, you were quite a ride..."

The Mendoza Line -- "Since I Came" -- 30 Year Low
The Mendoza Line -- "Thirty Year Low" -- 30 Year Low
The Mendoza Line -- "Aspect Of An Old Maid (Alt. Take)" -- 30 Year Low
[right click and save as]
[pre-order 30 Year Low from Newbury Comics here; check out Glurp's e-card with album stream here]

The Mendoza Line: InterWeb | MySpace | YouTube | Flickr

August 7, 2007

Today's Hotness: The A-Sides, Prefuse 73, The Answering Machine

The A-Sides>> Philadelphia's The A-Sides said here a family emergency precipitated the cancellation of its set Thursday night at Cambridge, Mass.'s Middle East Rock Club. So obviously we won't be covering it as we said we would here. The quintet had been slated to support Calla. The A-Sides promised to make up the date during a planned U.S. tour in October. The band will release its sophomore set Silver Storms on Vagrant next month. In a more recent blog post here A-Sides posted a live clip of themselves performing the new cut "We're The Trees." Check it out.

>> Electronic music phenom Prefuse 73 will release the new set Preparations in late October on Warp. The label reports that the first single "The Class of 73 Bells" will be released Sept. 17. It features Prefuse principal Scott Herren collaborating with New York psych band School Of Seven Bells and Battles drummer John Stanier. Mr. Herren will tour the UK and Europe with a band in October, and U.S. dates are planned.

>> Christian Fennesz's solo debut Hotel Paral.lel will be reissued by Editions Mego Sept. 24. Mego released the initial version of the set ten years earlier. Hotel Paral.lel is apparently "an investigation into the sonic possibilities residing in guitar-based digital music, recorded just before mobile computing devices became the norm." The reissue appends two items to the original twelve: the song "5" was originally released as a 7" in 1996 on Syntactic; a video for the album track "Aus" is the other addition. More information including the details on a a pre-order discount are located here.

>> The release of Okay Paddy's new EP Where You Went?, which we recently reviewed here, has been moved to Sept. 4. As planned, label Prison Jazz today released a pretty solid EP from another act, New Motels, entitled Domestic Life.

>> According to a blog post here, scruffy English pop luminaries The Answering Machine are breaking in a new drummer, which sets our mind slightly at ease, because there is something spooky about a guitar band that has no drummer, yeh? Anyway, the new drummer is not named, so maybe he or she still has to prove him or herself or survive some odd hazing or something. The Answering Machine has scads of tour dates booked between now and early November, so the new drummer will certainly have plenty of chances to settle in with the band between now and then. Check all the tour dates at the band's MySpace yert here.

>> It's been far too long since we've mentioned Birmingham, UK-based noise pop trio Johnny Foreigner. So the latest and greatest is that the band will be recording some tracks in London early next week. Can't wait to hear them. Also, in case we didn't already say so, Johnny Foreigner is now booked to support not one, but two Meneguar UK tour dates: Sept. 26 in Leeds and Oct. 4 in Cambridge. Those will be amazing shows. Someone shoot video.

>> With music bloggers all up in the news nowadays, we were wondering when our next star turn will be, which made us wonder what the deal was with Boston's NEMO fest this year (we sat on a panel last year moderated by's Rob Duffy). Anyway, according to the NEMO Internet Home Page, the conference will not be held this year. Here's part of the message: "We have decided to take a year off from the NEMO Music Festival while we focus on the 20th Anniversary of the Boston Music Awards, the [Popular Coffee Retailer] Music Makers Competition, the Verge College Music Conference and other entertainment related projects. We plan to revamp NEMO and do something bigger and better in 2008." You can read more here.

August 3, 2007

From The Admin Cubicle: Long Weekend

From The Admin Cubicle>> See you Tuesday or Wednesday. Things in the hopper include a review of the forthcoming Mendoza Line record 30 Year Low and a review of next week's A-Sides show in Cambridge.

August 2, 2007

Today's Hotness: Bad Brains, Meneguar, TGTB&TQ

>> The heaviest thing you are going to see today is this single video for newly rejuvenated hardcore progenitors Bad Brains' two tunes "Give Thanks And Praises" and "Jah Love." The clip was directed by one of the cats in System Of A Down. It's an exciting jumble of quick cuts. The dynamic editing seems like a good idea, because it is apparent from the live footage that comprises the video that HR, Dr. No and the gang don't get around the stage like they used to. Still, there is plenty of enigma there, driven home by the tight shots of H.R. in insect shades murmuring his prayer into the mic. Do check it out. We reviewed Bad Brains' most recent comeback record Build A Nation here last month. [via BrooklynVegan].

>> Yesterday's big Mobius Band news (scroll down) and a couple tech support/music trivia-related phone calls from Clicky Clicky Dad meant that we had to push off until today reportage about the two new Meneguar tracks the Brooklyn quartet posted to its MySpace cabin recently. Through the magic of a certain sort of dubious but very handy web site we were able to snatch the tracks for copious unfettered home listening. What we can tell you is that the cuts "Freshman Thoughts" and "Hurry Up" sound great. Well, actually, the songs are encoded at an unfortunate 96 Kbps, so they sound a little washy and flat -- but we're willing o suffer with lo-fi MP3s until we can get our hands on the real thing. And the songs, man, the songs... A touch more restrained than the bare-knuckled rockers found on I Was Born At Night [review here], the cuts take the Meneguar you know and love and give it a hint -- just a hint -- of a folksy feel. Maybe it's the hollered choruses that sound like they were recorded en masse in a class room. Maybe it is the less distorted guitars. But fear not, there is still plenty of edge, found in places including the derisive-sounding lyric "you single cell, you little know-it-all..." We'll have to hear all of Strangers In Our House to determine whether these tunes are pieces of the masterpiece we feel like Meneguar has in it. Stream the tracks for yourself here. Strangers In Our House will be released domestically in early October on Troubleman Unlimited. We reviewed a recent Meneguar show here.

>> We've told anyone who will listen that the strongest cut on The Good, The Bad & The Queen's self-titled debut is the throbbing, inexorable title track. This places Damon Albarn's quartet in fine company along with acts including Talk Talk and, well, we think there is a thread at ILM about others. Point being, "The Good, The Bad & The Queen" is really phenomenal. And now there is a mesmerizing video to go with it. We must admit the repurposing of footage of Sufis celebrating some aspect of their religion for the purpose of having interesting pictures for your rock video makes us a little uncomfortable. Some sort of odd colonial voyeurism at work or something. That said, the film maker's shtick of timing fits of religious ecstasy to the pounding surf of the song carries a spark of brilliance. Check out the video over at Pitchfork here.

August 1, 2007

!Mobius Band In Signing To Misra Shocker!

Mobius BandWell, not really much of a shock. We pretty much told you a couple weeks ago here, and someone told us a couple months before that. But today notable independent rock label Misra made it official, announcing here that it will release cyborg pop heroes Mobius Band's sophomore full length Heaven Oct. 2. You can already pre-order the set from Misra here. Perhaps the biggest news to come out of the whole thing is that Misra has posted the first preview MP3, the electropop track "Hallie," which we've linked for you below. The lyric is surprisingly direct for Mobius Band guitarist and singer Ben Sterling. The trio's updated bio notes some of the personal stuff the band has had to collectively weather during the time Heaven was being written and recorded and it is hard not to hear some of that here. The instrumentation is heavy on sampled strings, synth tones and the band's now familiar coterie of electronics, and there is some guitar in the chorus. Mobius Band will support the release of the new set via a tour with old friend Matthew Dear, and we've posted all the dates at the bottom of this item. Sadly, there's no Boston date currently, but we expect we'll be seeing the likes of the Mobius Band around here sometime. In the mean time, check out the new tune and peruse some of our more recent coverage linked below. For a kick, you can read our first Blogspot blog (as opposed to our prior blog, the archives of which are largely lost to the sands of time -- remember when people had blogs that weren't hosted by someone else?) mention of Mobius Band here in Oct. 2003.

Mobius Band -- "Hallie" -- Heaven
[right click and save as]
[pre-order Heaven from Misra here]

Previous Mobius Band coverage:

Show Us Yours #4: Mobius Band
That Was The Show That Was: Mobius Band

10/01 -- Mercury Lounge -- New York, NY
10/02 -- Johnny Brenda’s -- Philadelphia, PA
10/03 -- Satellite Ballroom -- Charlottesville, VA
10/04 -- Rock n’ Roll Hotel -- Washington DC
10/05 -- Local 506 -- Chapel Hill, NC
10/06 -- Drunken Unicorn -- Atlanta, GA
10/08 -- Emo’s -- Austin, Tx
10/09 -- Granada -- Dallas, TX
10/12 -- Hi-Dive -- Denver, CO
10/13 -- Blind Pig -- Ann Arbor, MI
10/16 -- Echo -- Los Angeles, CA
10/18 -- Mezzanine -- San Francisco, CA
10/19 -- Holocene -- Portland, OR
10/20 -- Crocodile -- Seattle, WA
10/21 -- Media Club -- Vancouver, BC Canada
10/24 -- Triple Rock -- Minneapolis, MN
10/25 -- Cafe Montemarte -- Madison, WI
10/26 -- Smart Bar -- Chicago, IL
10/27 -- Grog Shop -- Cleveland, OH