FYI: Tiny Mix Tapes will be participating in tomorrow’s PIPA/SOPA blackout

FYI: Tiny Mix Tapes will be participating in tomorrow's PIPA/SOPA blackout http://www.tinymixtapes.com/sites/default/files/news-12-01-sopa-blackout_0.jpg

On January 18, a coordinated 12-hour blackout of websites big (Wikipedia, Reddit) and small (TMT) will be taking place in order to protest and raise awareness about the PROTECT IP and Stop Online Piracy Acts. Head here for more information on the blackout and to see the growing list of participating sites. You can also watch this video for a summary of how both bills threaten the current state of online privacy and freedom of speech.

Our participation in tomorrow’s blackout is not meant as a lecture for our readers, but simply as an act of solidarity with the movement. We encourage you to research the bills during the blackout and do what you can to raise further awareness — Congress votes on PIPA on January 24.

• Strike Against SOPA: http://sopastrike.com
• Redefine: http://www.redefinemag.com

PAN hosting a festival in London w/ John Wiese, R/S, Eli Keszler, C.C. Hennix, and more. So forget Bonnaroo and Lollapalooza

I’ve attended one summer music festival. I drove eight hours to get there and waited another eight hours just to get into the venue. I paid too much money for mediocre iced coffee every morning. I didn’t shower, and I often found myself squashed against strangers who also hadn’t showered as I tried to scout out places with somewhat decent views of the stages. I missed a great late-night act because I was so damn exhausted.

Judging from FACT’s report, the PAN Festival appears to be a rather different sort of event. Supported by The Wire, the festival will take place January 27-28 at London’s Café OTO, a venue that’s hosted the likes of Tim Hecker, Thurston Moore, Grouper, and Mount Eerie. Instead of suffering painfully humid weather and wandering through crowds in a dehydrated daze, you can curl up with some organic fruit juice or a ginger beer and listen to cosmic noises, haunted drone, electro-acoustic distortion, and deconstructed classical — pieces that blur the very boundaries of music. The lineup highlights PAN’s experimental roster and includes R/S (Peter Rehberg/Marcus Schmickler), John Wiese, Eli Keszler, C.C. Hennix, Werner Durand, and Valerio Tricoli — acts that might not appear in a standard summer festival lineup. You can snag tickets for just Friday or Saturday, or you can pick up a two-day pass.

Don’t get me wrong, I had a great time that one summer, and I like those festivals just as much as the next music nerd. I’m just not always down to abandon hygiene for four straight days, ya know what I’m sayin’?

• PAN: http://www.pan-act.com
• Café OTO: http://cafeoto.co.uk

Megafaun announce tours of Europe and the US; ask them what their favorite board games are!

I’m not going to mention a certain indie-folk artist who’s recently dabbled in electro-orchestral 80s kitsch, because you probably already know that he chilled with Megafaun back in the day (before they were actually Megafaun, but that’s another story). It’s a damn good thing I came across an A.V. Club interview with Phil Cook, because now I can now rattle off a couple of slightly more obscure Megafaun fun facts:

1. Brad Cook sort of digs Top 40 country.
2. Joe Westerlund happens to be a bit of an expert on French minimalism and musique concrète.

I know that’s not much, so I’ll hazard a guess and say they all like mint chocolate chip ice cream and sometimes spend Saturday afternoons playing The Sims. However, I do know for sure that Megafaun has just announced a tour in support of their self-titled LP, which they released back in September on Hometapes. Don’t fret if they’re not playing anywhere close to you, because they’ll be announcing more dates soon. If you get a chance, ask them about their favorite colors and whether or not they like cats.

Tourdates:

02.01.12 - Groningen, Netherlands - Vera
02.02.12 - Brussels, Belgium - Ancienne Belgique Club
02.03.12 - Nijmegen, Netherlands - Doornroosje
02.04.12 - Charloi, Belgium - L’ Eden
02.05.12 - Gent, Belgium - Kunstencentrum Vooruit
02.06.12 - Luxembourg - Rock Hall Cafe
02.07.12 - Schorndorf, Germany - Club Manufaktur
02.08.12 - Munich, Germany - Das Provisum
02.09.12 - Madonna, Italy - Bronson
02.11.12 - Senigalliano, Italy - Gratis
02.12.12 - Roma, Italy - Angelo Mai
02.14.12 - Zurich, Switzerland - El Lokal
02.15.12 - Paris, France - Cafe de la Danse
02.16.12 - Nantes, France - Maison de l’Entudiantes
02.17.12 - Rennes, France - Ubu
02.18.12 - Bordeaux, France - Le Rocher de Palmer
02.19.12 - Santander, Spain - Cafe de las Artasz
02.20.12 - Zaragoza, Spain - Lata de Bombilla
02.21.12 - Barcelona, Spain - Sidecar
02.22.12 - Valencia, Spain - Sala Loco
02.23.12 - Madrid, Spain - Club Moby Dick
02.24.12 - Lisbon, Portugal - Music Box

(deep breath)

03.15.12 - Washington, DC - Black Cat #
03.16.12 - Philadelphia, PA - Johnny Brenda’s #
03.17.12 - New York City, NY - Highline Ballroom #
03.18.12 - Boston, MA - Great Scott #
03.21.12 - Chicago, IL - Schubas
03.22.12 - Milwaukee, WI - Cactus Club
03.23.12 - Madison, WI - High Noon Saloon
03.24.12 - Minneapolis, MN - Turf Club
03.27.12 - Denver, CO - Hi-Dive
03.28.12 - Salt Lake City, UT - Kilby Court
03.30.12 - Seattle, WA - Tractor Tavern
03.31.12 - Portland, OR - Doug Fir
04.03.12 - San Francisco, CA - Cafe Du Nord
04.04.12 - Santa Cruz, CA - The Crepe Place
04.05.12 - Los Angeles, CA - Bootleg Theater
04.06.12 - Tempe, AZ - The Sail Inn
04.07.12 - Santa Fe, NM - Sol Santa Fe
04.10.12 - Austin, TX - Mohawk
04.13.12 - Atlanta, GA - The Earl
04.14.12 - Saxapahaw, NC - Haw River Ballroom

# William Tyler

• Megafaun: http://megafaun.com
• Hometapes: http://hometapes.tumblr.com

Sleigh Bells hang out with Diplo and Liturgy for Florida tour, ditch Diplo and Liturgy for non-Florida tour

Here’s a classic joke. A blown-out noise-pop duo, a Brooklyn black metal outfit, and a hedonistic globe-trotting DJ walk into a bar… in Florida. There are only dumb things that can end that joke. In real life, it’s less a joke involving a bar and more a tour that is actually happening involving a bit more than a handful of venues… in Florida. Before the release of their sophomore effort Reign of Terror, Sleigh Bells (you know, the blown-out noise-pop duo!) are going on a short tour with Liturgy (you know, the Brooklyn black metal outfit!) and Diplo (you know, the hedonistic globe-trotting DJ!).

All that noise making and carrying on is going to get annoying eventually. That’s why Sleigh Bells are dropping off that dead weight in Diplo and Liturgy after those few dates. Those guys are such dead weight ugggggggggghhhhhhh. Sleigh Bells will play roughly another handful of dates unencumbered, apparently targeting only major cities. You know, like New York! And L.A.! And Toronto! The majorest!

By the way, Sleigh Bells’s Treats (TMT Review) follow-up, Reign of Terror, is still coming out on February 21 through Mom + Pop Music. It still has a title that sure sounds like a Sleigh Bells title. Hear the first single, “Comeback Kid,” below.

Sleigh Bells dates:

02.03.12 - Gainesville, FL - Florida Theater *
02.04.12 - Tampa, FL - The Ritz *
02.06.12 - Pensacola, FL - Vinyl Music Hall *
02.07.12 -Tallahassee, FL - The Moon *
02.09.12 - Jacksonville, FL - Freebird Live *
02.10.12 - Orlando, FL - Firestone *
02.11.12 - Ft. Lauderdale, FL - Revolution *
02.14.12 - Miami, FL - Grand Central *
02.16.12 - Washington, DC - 9:30 Club
02.17.12 - New York, NY - Terminal 5
02.18.12 - Toronto, ON - Phoenix
02.21.12 - Los Angeles, CA - Music Box
02.23.12 - San Francisco, CA - Regency Ballroom
02.24.12 - Seattle, WA - Showbox at Market

* Diplo, Liturgy

• Sleigh Bells: http://reignofterror.tv
• Mom + Pop Music: http://www.momandpopmusic.com

Grooveshark continues to prove it has largest balls of any music service by launching an iOS-compatible mobile site

Before we start, let’s recap Grooveshark’s recent stories of note. First, Apple deleted Grooveshark’s app from the iTunes store, then Google followed suit in the Android Marketplace. Next, Grooveshark was sued by all of the major labels except for EMI, the only group that it had an actual licensing agreement with. Finally, EMI decided to sue as well, claiming Grooveshark owed them $150,000 in royalties. Grooveshark chalked the complaint up as a minor contract dispute, downplaying the ordeal, as it has done with with all of its current setbacks.

With all of that on its plate, what does Grooveshark do? They serve up a big FUCK YOU sandwich to all of the above by releasing what essentially boils down to a mobile app that will work across all phone platforms that include a web browser, but circumvents the need to house the app in an App Store. Previously, you could navigate to grooveshark.com using your phone’s browser and see the HTML-built site, but because the actual streaming service used Flash, you couldn’t access and listen to content. The new mobile site, html5.grooveshark.com, is built completely using HTML5, meaning that it will work on the iPhone’s native browser, Safari, as well as in Google’s Chrome.

Who knew sharks had balls? The site should have been long gone by now, but they keep on plowing ahead with nary a care as to what some of the largest players in the music biz throw at them. Their ultimate extinction is still most likely on the horizon, but good for Grooveshark for not giving a shit. Enjoy free streaming on your phone while it lasts!

• Grooveshark Mobile: http://html5.grooveshark.com

Lower Dens announce new album, drop first single “Brains,” possibly a veiled endorsement of Newt Gingrich

Lower Dens — you know, the newish rock band led by Jana Hunter, former lead singer for the influential band Jana Hunter — are proving once again that they’re the hardest working indie-leaning group with initials LD (sit down, Lavender Diamond and Lucky Dragons) by announcing only 17 days into the new year that they have a new album coming out May 1 AND a first single from said album. The single is called “Brains,” and by leap of faith I’m going to say that the album is called Nootropics, based on what’s written in the “Album” field of the Mp3 once you’ve downloaded it. Hey, the Mp3! Go get it! Click on the big picture here to download, or click here to make less of a commitment and just stream it.

After releasing Twin-Hand Movement (TMT Review) in 2010 on Hunter’s long-time label Gnomonsong, the band was later spotted releasing a 7-inch via Sub Pop on the most recent Record Store Day, and somewhere along the way they lost both their drummer and a guitarist — go here to read about all that, but to summarize: they couldn’t handle the punishing schedule nor the future plans to sell Lower Dens-emblazoned Mike’s Hard Lemonade coozies. The good news is that apparently their replacement drummer is effin’ Nate Nelson of Mouthus and Crazy Dreams Band!

If you’ll allow me to make one last conjecture, given that “Brains” is streaming on Ribbon Music’s SoundCloud page and available for preorder on 10-inch vinyl, plus Ribbon put out that last John Maus record and are going to put out that next Black Dice record, it sure seems like Nootropics is going to be on Ribbon. It’s the way these labels work, man… put your ear to the ground and suck in the fumes. You’re not young anymore. Get wise.

Nootropics tracklisting:

01. Alphabet Song
02. Brains
03. Stem
04. Propagation
05. Lamb
06. Candy
07. Lion in Winter Pt. 1
08. Lion in Winter Pt. 2
09. Nova Anthem
10. In the End is the Beginning

• Lower Dens: http://lowerdens.com
• Ribbon: http://www.ribbonmusic.com