Good News For Fans of Electro-Orchestral Indie-Funk Tribal-Techno Space-Pop Collectives: Architecture In Helsinki Tour North America

As a TMT reader, you’ve probably heard of Architecture in Helsinki by now. But perhaps you’ve been too insecure to attend one of their concerts. Maybe you’re worried that there are enough members in the band to beat you up if you accidentally singe them with your pants, which you have unconsciously removed and set ablaze while caught up in the swelling energy of the music. Or maybe you’ve never seen a glockenspiel before and don’t want the magic of that word ruined for you.

It’s okay to be afraid. I’ll take you through this step by step:

This fall, the Australian musicians that everyone loves to count, Architecture in Helsinki, will tour across Western Europe and North America. They will be joined on 12 European dates by YACHT, with whom they shared shows earlier this summer.

Architecture in Helsinki will be playing songs from their new album, the half hour of power Places Like These (TMT Review). You can listen to part of the album on their MySpace page and download the single “Heart It Races” for free here. I suggest that you purchase the full album, as you will be required to hum every melody flawlessly in order to enter the concert. Those who fail to do so will be shrunk to the size of a grain of sand and forced to live out their years in Gus Franklin’s hair until they are eventually murdered by lice. Since the new LP is so short (don’t say it), chances are the band will play earlier works as well. So you should also buy the two preceding albums, Fingers Crossed and In Case We Die, just to be safe. Oh, and on their last tour, they played the Degrassi Junior High theme song, so you had better download and memorize that as well, if you want to avoid a most gruesomely absurd fate.

In order to ready yourself for the unfamiliar levels of quirkiness you’ll experience once inside the concert, I suggest that you watch the music videos for “Heart it Races” and “Hold Music.” While in Paris, Architecture in Helsinki recorded two live hootenannies for the zine La Blogotheque. While not typical AiH concert fare, they may provide an essential stepping stone that will save you from the raw shock and trauma of seeing a live band unprepared. In recent years, hundreds of people have lost consciousness due to the sheer number of instruments present at Architecture in Helsinki concerts (science has proven that the average human threshold is a 3:1 instrument-to-performer ratio).

If you’re still uncomfortable, Architecture in Helsinki put out an EP with tourmates Clap Your Hands Say Yeah and Takka Takka containing two live AiH tracks. This precious elixir was only sold on the tour, but I’m sure you can figure that one out on your own if you want the extra safety. Or you can always just carry a pear in your left pocket.

Now you can have fun as correctly and safely as possible:

# YACHT

Hey Mercedes Reunites For Two Shows, Organizes A Symbolic Funeral For The Word ‘Emo’

The word ‘emo’ has caused enough damage. It’s got to go. What used to be a relatively fair descriptor for transitioning ‘80s hardcore and its ‘90s descendents has turned into an unspecific, trite, and all-but-meaningless cliché.

Well, to be fair, it turned into a cliché a long time ago.

But only recently have former ‘emo’ users and abusers been able to realize the destructive nature of their problem. The pejorative connotations of the word make any and all attempts to ‘take back’ the word misguided and ultimately fruitless. Stop. Stop using it. ‘Emo’ is gone. Forever. Damn, I didn't even mean to use it two sentences ago. I better start calling it ‘The E word.’ Yes, that’ll make people forget about it. Genius.

Now: The disbanded pop-punk group Hey Mercedes is getting back together for a two-show stint: one a straight ahead rock gig in Milwaukee (in fact, it's pronounced "mill-e-wah-que," which is Algonquin for "the good land."), the other a grand-opening shindig for Threadless’ new retail store in Chicago. The latter will be free, granted you stop by said retail location after it opens September 10 and pick up, at the most, two tickets. Like those free movie preview passes you sometimes get when you test drive a car, tickets do not guarantee entry.

Note: If you care about what TMT thinks, Nanna’s last City on Film LP featured a certain Minus the Bear backing him up. ‘E Word’ to the max... WOOPS!
09.13.07 – Milwaukee, WI – Cactus Club *
09.14.07 – Chicago, IL – The Metro #

* The Response & New Ruins

# Anathallo & Freer

Deerhoof, Dirty Projectors, Mount Eerie, and TVOTR Contribute to Worried Noodles Album; Stan Lee To Illustrate The Great American Songbook

To quote the early 1980s, tiger-striped, spandex-wearing Rod Stewart, “some guys have all the luck.” The only “artists” I could harass into composing scores to the words in my still unpublished one-part play Pickly!: The Really Sour Pickle was my uncle on drunken kazoo and Daniel Baldwin. I mean, my uncle kicks ass on the ‘zoo, and Baldwin does a mean second-rate Tom Waits impression (especially when sitting behind a miniature piano), but compared to Worried Noodles, it sounds like Impotent Noodles. I am not sure how Scottish artist David Shrigley did it, but he has mustered up contributions from Deerhoof, Dirty Projectors, Max Tundra, Mount Eerie, Franz Ferdinand, Grizzly Bear, David Byrne, YACHT, Liars, TV On The Radio, and 32 more artists who wrote and recorded songs based on his work! To quote the early-1970s, jeans-with-leather-crotch-patch-wearing Rod Stewart (what the... again?), “every picture tells a story.”

Post-Disco Rod and Boozy-Dude Rod would both have to admit that Shrigley’s scribbles lend themselves nicely to a musical liaison. Worried Noodles -- a 39-song double-disc collection -- will be released October 23 through Tomlab (and on 3xLP in 2008). Shrigley is known primarily for designing album covers, creating wry cartoons, sculptures, animated film, videos, and photos... pretty much your average all-around socially sharp, oft-hilarious, multidisciplinary artist. Worried Noodles (The Empty Sleeve) originally came out as an LP-shaped lyrics and illustration book two years ago. Since then, many heroic musicians and worthless civilians have embraced Shrigley’s work. But only artistic admirers are on Worried Noodles, the album.

Disc One:

1. Roger Ferguson - “Welcome Singer”
2. Christopher Francis - “One”
3. Grizzly Bear - “Blackcurrant Jam”
4. R. Stevie Moore - “Live in Fear”
5. Phil Elvrum & Nick Krgovich - “Whatcha Doin”
6. Scarlett’s Well - “Maybe”
7. Psapp - “Sad Song”
8. Aidan Moffat & The Best Of’s - “Your Hands Are Cold”
9. YACHT - “I Saw You”
10. Simon Bookish - “Prince of Wales”
11. Deerhoof - “You, Dog” (AKA “Kidz Are So Small”)
12. Hank - “Baby’s Bible”
13. Marriot 1262 (TV On The Radio Portland Chapter) - “Sweet, Sweet Potato”
14. David Byrne - “For You”
15. James Chadwick - “The Wooden Floor”
16. Islands - “Joy”
17. Cotton Candy - “A Sentimental Song”
18. Franz Ferdinand - “No”
19. Alig Fodder - “The Hole”
20. Cibelle - “Elaine”

Disc Two:

1. Dirty Projectors - “Come Forward”
2. The Curtains - “Show Me the Way Things Work”
3. Max Tundra - “A Truce”
4. Munch Munch - “A Squirrel”
5. Liars - “Panic Button”
6. Tussle (fest. David Shrigley) - “A Clash of Hands”
7. Trans Am - “The Film”
8. John Shankie - “A Song”
9. Scout Niblett - “The Bell”
10. Final Fantasy - “Joys”
11. Mount Eerie - “A Sentimental Song”
12. The Dead Science - “Once I Found a Diamond”
13. Lord Cut Glass - “Maybe”
14. No Kids - “Another Song”
15. Hot Chip - “No”
16. Casiotone For the Painfully Alone - “The Pretty Girl”
17. Mitch Friedman - “Awesome”
18. Pyrolator & Stoya - “Elaine”
19. Les Georges Leningrad - “Manager and Coordinator of Prostitutes”

New York Governor Signs “Truth in Music” Law, Sha Na Na Fans No Longer Discussing Theories on Multiple Existences

New York governor Eliot Spitzer has recently positioned himself in the ever-lumpy, faded, and urine-smelling armchair of fruitless music rights championing.

In an effort to defend the forgettable rights of music-makers Sha Na Na (of Grease... acclaim), The Coasters, and The Platters, Spitzer recently John Hancocked the Truth in Music Law, which fines bands up to $15,000 for passing themselves off as these and other acts they’re in no way affiliated with.

In other words, imposter acts in cheaper toupees are (apparently) posing as the aforementioned B-listers and profiting off their name.

And get this, enlightened precious TMT reader:

THIS HAPPENS A LOT.

Which is preposterous, considering how BIG Sha Na Na is/was, and the plethora of Jon Bauman spreads to grace a Tiger Beat.* I mean, ladies and gents, he was the host of Hollywood Squares, which trumps any ab-pumping David Cassidy pin-up.

Let’s be real. Your parents probably got wasted at the Sha Na Na reunion show, stood in a mosh pit thick with the smothering pungency of b.o. and Old Spice, the drenched armpits of your dad’s Tommy Bahama shirt flailing. Your mom probably threw (sensible) panties onstage.

THE REAL PROBLEM: Those pesky imposters are stealing sloppy rock ‘n’ roll blowjobs from sexually-charged forty-somethings with fried hair, pleather jackets, and menthol cigarette breath.

YOUR REAL PROBLEM: You don’t want your mom blowing a phony Jon Bauman.

*Yea... no.

M83 enjoyed enormous success with 2006's Before the Dawn Heals Us. I liked the album, just not those creepy intros to the songs where a schizophrenic mother is talking to herself and thinking that someone is stalking her. Yes, I'm sure it weirded you out too, but if you haven't heard it yet, pick up the album and prepare to be blown away by Anthony Gonzalez and his AMAZING AMBIENT ELECTRONICA MUSIC. Of course, also be prepared to be weirded out by the aforementioned schizophrenic mother skits.

Talk of the 2006 album aside, it looks as if the new, as-yet untitled M83 album will be released in early 2008. Gonzalez is currently in the studio working on it with Ken Thomas (Sigur Rós, Sugarcubes, Cocteau Twins, Suede) and Ewan Pearson (Tracey Thorn, The Rapture, Ladytron).

Sadly that's all the information released so far about the new M83 album, but lucky for you, we've got info on a side-project called Digital Shades. Featuring tracks that Gonzalez has been slowly working on (sans pressure and time constraints) since 2006, Digital Shades: Vol. 1 is ostensibly the first installment in a series of ambient works. The album is said to be influenced by Eno and Krautrock and is named Digital Shades due to both the process by which it was recorded and the way it will be distributed. Digital, digitally... Cute! I don't quite understand the "shades" part yet (maybe he recorded it under a tree?), but it sounds cool.

Of course, be prepared for extremely creepy vocal introductions to songs about the devil trying to capture little children and their mommies when these new Gonzalez projects drop.

I'm stoked.

Don’t Look So Disappointed, Handsome Furs Tour

"Wolf Parade?"

"This isn't Wolf Parade!"

"Who is this guy and this girl?"

"What is going on?"

"Where did my pants go?"

"Why does that gorilla have a penis?"

Warning: A Handsome Furs show may not specifically be for Wolf Parade fans. Yes, it is true that Handsome Furs features Dan Boeckner of Wolf Parade with his wife Alexei Perry. And yes, it is true that the duo is a side project of Wolf Parade. But we must realize that side projects do not often fully represent the same sounds as the residing band, as science has proved over and over again.

Most importantly, Handsome Furs is a musical act, not a Furry convention. I learned the hard way by showing up to a Handsome Furs show in a sexually explicit gorilla costume. Let's just say the crowd doesn't often take too kindly to Furries.

The Montrealites will be playing a handful of North American shows before heading overseas to play songs from the Sub Pop-released, Plague Park. You can come to any of these shows however you want, but please do not be disappointed that Handsome Furs is not Wolf Parade. You will know this when you purchase your ticket.

"I guess this sort of sounds like Wolf Parade."

Tourdates:

  

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