screams, whispers and songs from planet earth

Month: January 2013 Page 1 of 2

Yo La Tengo releases video for new album, premieres Food Network cooking show

Ok, so Yo La Tengo doesn’t have their own cooking show, but they probably could if they wanted to. For their just released new album Fade (on Matador Records), they’ve released two videos. The first one is “Before We Run”. The new video, just released, is for the beautiful acoustic song “I’ll Be Around.” What makes this video so unusual, besides the running on-screen lyrics and commentary that has either everything or nothing whatsoever to do with the lyrics being sung, are the two recipes (for Spicy Tortilla Soup and a Spanish Tortilla – yum!) that are provided over the course of the song, along with footage of the band preparing said recipes. This is either the strangest music video ever produced, the strangest cooking video ever produced, or both.

Another first—the first indie rock band to be interviewed by bon appétit magazine.

They’re touring all over the place, coming to the East Coast (Burlington, Boston, Washington D.C., NYC) but unfortunately all shows, except maybe the Higher Ground gig on 2/12, are already (quite understandably) sold out.

web | facebook | twitter | buy it from matador | buy it on iTunes | buy it on amazon

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Depeche Mode’s “Heaven” – first single from their upcoming album

Depeche Mode will soon be releasing album #13, their first since Sounds of the Universe in 2009. The new album will be called Delta Machine, due out March 26 on Columbia. For now, the lead single “Heaven” was premiered on KROQ. The video for this track will be released on February 1, ahead of the single’s release on February 5th. So far, there’s just a slew of European tour dates for May through July. Listening to the delicious slow burn of this new song, I can tell you I’m really looking forward to hearing the album.

web | facebook | twitter | :::::: LISTEN TO “HEAVEN” ON KROQ ::::::

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George Glass’s nifty new song “Sporto”

I have a theory. If I keep up with cool new music from my Eastside L.A. peeps as they’re putting things out through this fledgling new year, when the time comes to write my yearly ’roundup’ say in December of this year, I won’t have to wonder what everyone has been up to in the past year. I wonder how long this ambitious new project of mine will last?

So here’s a brand new song from George Glass, off their upcoming album. It’s got a nice, dreamy laid back West Coast sound with pretty harmonies and seems somehow to be a song about a hungry monster with beady eyes being lonely living at the top (this is from a few listens on my crappy Netbook; let’s see how far off base I am). The new album called Welcome Home is imminent, as in “any day now.”

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Night 2 of The Airborne Toxic Event @ Webster Hall, NYC

If night #1 was the formal unveiling of the new songs (with Island Records folks in attendance), the first show of 2013 and official “kick off” for the new album and tour, then night #2 of The Airborne Toxic Event in New York City was a goofy get-together with your buddies hanging out in an exceptionally large living room.

After Mikel made the mistake of announcing that this was “the good night,” the technical snafus began and kept coming, making for some off-the-cuff hilarity and loads of great fun. I’ll never stop loving the quirky personality of this band and the sheer joy they have in performing, to the point that even when something screwy happens that might throw someone else off their game, they seem to delight in those unexpected moments. Mikel, ever the showman, especially thrives in those situations. As he says, that’s what rock ‘n’ roll is all about; never really knowing what’s going to happen, where everything can completely go off the rails at any moment. That’s what makes the evening exciting and special. And it most certainly was.

The set list for tonight (more or less) was: All I Ever Wanted, The Secret, Numb, Changing, What’s In A Name, Gasoline, Does This Mean You’re Moving On?, Papillon, Wishing Well, Timeless, This Losing, Welcome To Your Wedding Day, Sometime Around Midnight, Innocence, All At Once // Happiness Is Overrated, Missy.

After a two-night high like that, I’m crashing pretty hard now, but there’s already been the promise of more tour dates being announced next week. Bring it on!

Thanks again to my friend citybug for the great videos.

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A Magical Evening with The Airborne Toxic Event in New York City


It was an incredibly powerful evening with old friends. I’m at a complete loss for words, so don’t expect this to be eloquent, but after a performance like that, I had to stay up and post something.

It’s been over a year since The Airborne Toxic Event played in New York, and from the emotional outpouring of all their fans, it was obvious they had been deeply missed. We witnessed a dramatic unveiling of four new songs from the upcoming album, Such Hot Blood, and there were massive chanting sing-a-longs of beloved favorites (that would be everything else). They opened with “All At Once,” then moved in to “Wishing Well,” and from there, it was a breathtaking, dizzying smorgasbord of the following, in no particular order (apologies if I missed anything): new songs – The Secret, Timeless, The Storm, What’s In A Name. And also… Half Of Something Else, The Graveyard Near The House, The Book Of Love, All I Ever Wanted (with the original lyrics), Gasoline, Sometime Around Midnight, Does This Mean You’re Moving On?, Happiness Is Overrated, Welcome To Your Wedding Day, Numb, Changing, and Missy bedecked in dazzling new clothes, with snippets of Johnny Cash’s “Ring Of Fire,” Tom Petty’s “American Girl,” and a long cover of Bruce Springsteen’s “Born In The USA.” Mind-blowing.

I will speak about the new songs when the album comes out and I do a proper review. Too much to process and absorb, and that takes some time. For now, let’s just say absolutely stunning, and there’s no doubt it’s going to be a HUGE year for them.

Here’s “Timeless,” filmed by my friend Charles (a.k.a. citybug). See his other videos on YouTube. Thanks for handling the filming duties, buddy!





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MojoSlim rocks out at Polcari’s in Saugus – Dec. 14, 2012

Who would have guessed there was a hot nightclub scene in Saugus? Hell, who would have guessed there was any sort of scene in Saugus. But when I skeptically ventured out and into Polcari’s on Route 1 to see R&B cover band extraordinaire MojoSlim, I stepped unwittingly into some kind of cosmic time warp back to a swinger lounge of the 1970s, with the vibe of a North Shore, Boston edition of Jersey Shore.

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Jeff Beam at T.T. the Bear’s Place Tues. night

If you’re in the mood for some lovely singer-songwriter acoustic ‘psych rock’ Tuesday night, head over to T.T. the Bear’s Place for Maine-based Jeff Beam. He’ll be on at 8:45pm, and will be performing with The Sea Life, Old Abram Brow and Wilder Maker.

For now, have a listen to You’ll Find That It’s Stranger Than Known (non-album tracks from 2012), which, just for the record, is an album title I feel a particularly affinity with at the moment.

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Introducing… The Rebel Light

The Rebel Light released their debut self-titled EP back in November. Now based in L.A., the band is comprised of two brothers from Montauk, New York and their “long lost cousin” from Yucaipa, California. In true DIY spirit, the EP was recorded and mixed by the band themselves, with the vocals captured in the bathroom and the drums tracked in a wood shed. They’ve got an exuberant and celebratory sound with lots going on in this 3 song EP (plus radio edit). There’s the pop balladry of “Goodbye Serenade,” the fully orchestrated production of “Wake Up Your Mind,” and somewhere between those two with the Beatlesque “My Heroes Are Dead.”

Have a listen below, and if you like what you hear, give the band a little tip when you download it. You can grab it from bandcamp or noisetrade.

“Goodbye Serenade,” is especially strong, anthemic in its chorus and horn revelry. It achieves a special poignancy when experienced along with their video, which combines brief clips of band members interspersed with a cultural collage of our world’s history, our best and worst moments. I’m not certain of the intention, but it takes a song about a personal relationship to a completely different place with its refrain, “strange days going in circles…” Definitely a band to watch.

web | facebook | twitter | bandcamp | youtube | noisetrade

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Introducing… This Much (from Allston)

Here’s some lovely music from This Much, a relatively new band based in Allston who have recently released their first 2-song EP, “Steady Feet / The Noise” (listen below). Very pretty and contemplative, with some heartwarming acoustic guitar and thoughtful, intelligent lyrics. Note: this is important. A song can have a nice or interesting sound, but lame, last-minute words thrown on top can completely ruin everything. That’s just me, of course. Maybe it’s you too; I don’t know. But when I hear a line “and I can’t wait to see you on steady feet,” that’s something that deserves further attention. I’ll be watching these guys. Their second EP, “Interest / Spiral” will be coming soon.

This Much is: Terrence Mulhern – vocals, guitar, keyboards, recording/mixing; Denny Kennedy – drums, manager; John Stricker – bass. I just love that – “drums, manager.” How’s that for an authentic indie band?

Steady Feet/The Noise by This Much

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Dessa comes to The Sinclair Sunday Night

photo by Kai Benson

photo by Kai Benson

Singer, rapper and lyricist Dessa (of Doomtree) will be performing with her full band at The Sinclair on Sunday, January 13. You can buy tickets here. Also on the bill will be Adeem, H.W. & DJ Emoh and Betta.
::: facebook event :::

Her latest album is Castor, The Twin, and she’ll also be performing new songs from her forthcoming album, due out in the Spring. Castor, The Twin featured reworkings of songs from her debut album, A Badly Broken Code, with an ensemble that will also be featured in her live performance. This will include voila, stand-up bass, grand piano, mandolin, vibraphone and timpani.

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