It’s time to have a very pretty dance party: Jon Hopkins to release new 12-inch and tour with Four Tet

It's time to have a very pretty dance party: Jon Hopkins to release new 12-inch and tour with Four Tet

Hey, remember when studio badass and ambient/electronic music whiz Jon Hopkins released Insides (TMT Review) last year? Well, Hopkins is hoping that you don’t, actually, so that he can sell you a couple of its songs all over again. Well, sorta. Let’s read on together!

On August 9, Hopkins’ label Domino is dropping a new 12-inch featuring a “garage-tinged” remix (I think that means he did it in Mario Paint?) of Insides jam “Vessel,” backed with a re-imagining of that same album’s “Wire” courtesy of Nathan Fake. Fans may recall that Hopkins himself recently remixed the Four Tet tune “Angel Echoes” for that eponymous 12-inch single (also via Domino), so I guess it’s only fair that Four Tet hits him back. (This is quite a racket Domino has going, huh?) You can check out the “Vessel” remix over here if your ears are trying to hear that shit. I haven’t listened to it yet, myself. But I’m just assuming right now that it sounds like this.

In addition to all of this generous remix back-scratching, Hopkins also gets the honor of supporting Four Tet on a string of North American dates this fall. Let that be a lesson to you, everybody. If you want to tour with famous electronic musicians, you just have to put your name on their music and sell it back to them!

Jon Hopkins tourdates:

09.05.10 - Long Island, NY - Electric Zoo Festival
10.14.10 - Chicago, IL - Metro *
10.15.10 - Los Angeles, CA - Henry Fonda Theater *
10.16.10 - San Francisco, CA - Treasure Island Music Festival
10.20.10 - Toronto, ON - The Mod Club *
10.21.10 - Montreal, QC - Studio Just For Laugh *
10.22.10 - New York, NY - Webster Hall *
10.24.10 - Washington, DC - 9:30 Club *

* Four Tet

• Jon Hopkins:
• Four Tet:
• Domino:
• Nathan Fake:

RIP: Melvin Bliss, soul singer known for the much-sampled "Synthetic Substitution"

From The Atlantic:

There are few examples of hip-hop’s capacity for preserving obscure nooks of our cultural past than the second life of Melvin Bliss, a relatively obscure 1970s singer whose “Synthetic Substitution,” a throwaway B-side, became one of the most frequently sampled songs of the late ’80s and early ’90s. The-Breaks has a fairly exhaustive list of “Synthetic” samples, Fat Lace has the YouTube links, and here’s a Matthew Africa “Synthetic” mix from a while back.

Bliss passed away yesterday. It’s unlikely he would have been famous enough to merit all that much more fact-checking beyond nailing down his place of birth and exact age (he was believed to be in his 70s). But thanks to old soul devotees like Wax Poetics and others who have wondered where “those drums” came from, we can begin to affiliate a life with that mysterious, perfect name. A soul man named Bliss? Can’t be real. (It wasn’t…)

Check out the different ways in which Melvin Bliss has been sampled here.

The Thermals set tour in support of Personal Life

Playing in a band is no piece of cake, especially when you’ve been together for as long as The Thermals have. For their latest album, Personal Life, due out on September 7 from Kill Rock Stars (TMT News), the trio found themselves in therapy, working out a few of their own personal issues, Some Kind of Monster style. TMT got the chance to sit down with The Thermals’ therapist and find out the story behind the music. Apparently, newest drummer, Westin Glass, was receiving odd hazing rituals from Hutch Harris and Kathy Foster, so much that Personal Life producer Chris Walla had to step in and break things up. Unfortunately, Walla is in Death Cab For Cutie, which makes him a little sensitive by default, so he was no match for Harris and Foster’s ruthless antics. Thankfully, their therapy sessions got The Thermals back on track and Walla’s broken nose healed and all was well. The entire incident is documented thoroughly on Personal Life. Be sure to listen closely for Walla’s whimpering noises in the background.

09.06.10 - Seattle, WA - Bumbershoot Festival
09.08.10 - Bend, OR - The Tower Theatre
09.09.10 - Portland, OR - Crystal Ballroom - MusicFest NW
09.12.10 - Portland, OR - Kennedy School
09.25.10 - Bellingham, WA - Wild Buffalo @
09.26.10 - Spokane, WA - The Seaside
09.27.10 - Billings, MT - The Railyard Ale House
09.29.10 - Fargo, ND - The Aquarium
09.30.10 - Minneapolis, MN - Triple Rock Social Club %
10.01.10 - Iowa City, IA - The Mill %
10.02.10 - Madison, WI - The Annex %
10.03.10 - Chicago, IL - Logan Square Auditorium
10.04.10 - Bloomington, IN - Rhino’s %
10.06.10 - Detroit, MI - Magic Stick %
10.07.10 - Cincinnati, OH - Northside Tavern %
10.08.10 - Cleveland, OH - Beachland Ballroom %
10.09.10 - Toronto, Ontario - Lee’s Palace %
10.10.10 - Ithaca, NY - Castaways %
10.12.10 - Philadelphia, PA - First Unitarian Church %
10.13.10 - New York, NY - Irving Plaza %
10.14.10 - Boston, MA - Paradise Rock Club %
10.15.10 - Washington, DC - Black Cat %
10.17.10 - Mt. Pleasant, SC - Village Tavern %
10.19.10 - Athens, GA - 40 Watt %
10.20.10 - Nashville, TN - Exit/In %
10.21.10 - Birmingham, AL - Bottle Tree %
10.22.10 - New Orleans, LA - One Eyed Jacks %
10.23.10 - Austin, TX - Red 7 %
10.24.10 - Dallas, TX - Granada Theater %
10.28.10 - Denver, CO - The Bluebird Theater
10.29.10 - Salt Lake City, UT - Urban Lounge
10.30.10 - Boise, ID - Neurolux

@ Japandroids
% Cymbals Eat Guitars

• The Thermals:
• Kill Rock Stars:

[Photo: Alicia J. Rose]

Casiotone for the Painfully Alone plans final tour, effectively dismantle the entire genre of sad-sack casiocore

If you’re the peculiarly specific type of personality that’s constantly downtrodden and only enjoys the sound of Casio keyboards, you’ve had a friend for the past 13 years in Owen Ashworth, a.k.a. Casiotone for the Painfuly Alone. That said, if you’re that exact type of person, you may need to sit down for a second. As it turns out, Ashworth has decided to disband his one-man band. He still plans to make music, just not under the Casiotone for the Painfully Alone name. The man may even branch out into the fruitful world of Yamahas.

Before you, the dedicated Casiotone enthusiast who gobbled up last year’s Vs. Children (TMT Review) on Tomlab, start looking for the tragic undertones in Wesley Willis records, know that Ashworth isn’t letting his old project just fall off the face of the earth. No, the guy is sending his Casio to the grave all Viking funeral style, except more “going on an enormous tour” and less “being cremated at sea.” Ashworth will tour North America throughout September and October, and then he’ll head to Europe to tour through late October and November, though those dates have yet to be booked. But don’t take it from me, take it from Ashworth, whose full statement (from the group’s MySpace) lies between here and his North American itinerary:

You may have already heard that I’ve decided to end Casiotone for the Painfully Alone. I’d just like to clarify that this doesn’t mean that I’m quitting music. I love writing & recording songs, & I hope to make lots more records in my lifetime. But, after nearly thirteen years of being the dude from Casiotone for the Painfully Alone, I’m ready for a fresh start & a new challenge. So, after December 5, 2010 (the thirteen year anniversary of my first show), I’m throwing out the old songs & I’m trying something new. I’ll have more news about new projects & plans in the coming months.

Between now & December 5, I’m going to try to play as many Casiotone for the Painfully Alone shows as I can. In September & October, I’ll be touring the United States & Canada with some good friends from Melbourne, Australia. They’re called Otouto & they are so great. Those tour dates are below. Later in October & on into November, I’ll be touring Europe & the United Kingdom. That tour is still being booked, but I should have the dates ready to share in a couple of weeks. I’m coming home for Thanksgiving, & then I’m going to try to do something extra special for the big thirteen year anniversary grand finale. I’m not exactly sure what it’ll be yet, but I’ll let you know as soon as I figure it out.

I imagine I’ll be repeating this sentiment a lot between now & December, but thank you so, so much to everyone who has been so supportive of Casiotone for the Painfully Alone over the past thirteen years. I never would have started playing shows or making records without the encouragement of some great friends, & it’s blowing my ever-loving mind how many more friends I’ve made through music over the years. Seriously, thank you.

Tomlab is planning to release a 10-inch around Christmas as a final goodbye.

Casiotone for the Painfully Final Tour:

09.08.10 - Chicago, IL - Subterranean *
09.09.10 - Iowa City, IA - PS1 *
09.10.10 - Omaha, NE - The Bourbon Theatre *
09.11.10 - Denver, CO - Hi-Dive *
09.12.10 - Salt Lake City, UT - Subterranean/Slowtrain Records *
09.13.10 - Boise, ID - Visual Arts Collective *
09.14.10 - Seattle, WA - Sunset Tavern *
09.15.10 - Vancouver, BC - Biltmore Cabaret *
09.16.10 - Victoria, BC - The Legendary Castle Troyler *
09.17.10 - Victoria, BC - Logan’s *
09.18.10 - Portland, OR - Artistery *
09.19.10 - Portland, OR - The Wail *
09.21.10 - Oakland, CA - 21 Grand *
09.22.10 - Santa Cruz, CA - The Crepe Place
09.23.10 - San Luis Obispo, CA -SLO Art Center *
09.24.10 - Los Angeles, CA - The Smell *
09.25.10 - Phoenix, AZ - Trunk Space *
09.27.10 - Austin, TX - Emo’s *
09.28.10 - Houston, TX - Khon’s Rooftop *
09.29.10 - Denton, TX - Dan’s Silverleaf
09.30.10 - Memphis ,TN - Hi-Tone *
10.01.10 - Nashville, TN - The End (Next Big Nashville Festival) *
10.02.10 - Lousville, KY - Zanzabar *
10.07.10 - Kalamazoo, MI - WIDR Barking Tuna Festival *
10.08.10 - Toronto, ON - The Piston *
10.09.10 - Ottawa, ON - Raw Sugar *
10.10.10 - Montreal, QC - Casa Del Popolo
10.12.10 - Biddeford, ME - The Oak & The Ax *
10.13.10 - Cambridge, MA - TT The Bear’s *
10.14.10 - Manhattan, NY - Mercury Lounge *
10.15.10 - Brooklyn, NY - Monster Island Basement *
10.16.10 - Rochester, NY - Bug Jar
10.17.10 - Pittsburgh, PA - Garfield Arts

* Otouto

• Casiotone for the Painfully Alone:
• Tomlab:

[Photo: MySpace]

Wan bemul! (That’s an anagram for “new album” from Mice Parade, itself an anagram for Adam Pierce)

So what does it mean to be left-handed? There’s got to be more to it than an affinity with Helen Keller, Jimi Hendrix, and Michelangelo, or the need for a left-handed can opener. Mice Parade just might have the answer – or perhaps Adam Pierce simply has no qualms about false advertising. What It Means to Be Left-Handed, Pierce’s next album (marking the first of the second decade in which he has taken on a rodent moniker, and first since 2007) will be released September 14 on FatCat Records.

According to the press release, “splashes of West African Highlife mingle with Flamenco, Brazilian jazz, and the late 80s indie rock that band founder Adam Pierce was stuck on in high school.” Such a trendy hodgepodge of cultures is bolstered by an almost absurdly multifarious list of collaborators: Pierce’s tour lineup includes classical guitarist Dan Lippel, Caroline Lufkin, and Doug Scharin (drummer for HiM – insert shrug), but for various What It Means tracks, he’s also recruited Gregory and The Hawk’s Meredith Godreau, the Swahili singer Somi, and members of Clammbon. To satisfy that “80s indie rock” promise, the album includes a cover of “Mallo Cup” by The Lemonheads, in addition to the swirls of stylistic appropriation encompassing all the rest. There is also a cover of Tom Brosseau’s far more recent song, “Mary Anne” (originally on Empty Houses Are Lonely [TMT Review]) As of now, you can listen to “In Between Times” on Stereogum, a poppy, heavily percussive ditty replete with hand-claps and pleasantly melodic vocals from Caroline Lufkin. Fall tourdates coming soon!

What It Means to Be Left-Handed tracklisting:

01. Kupanda
02. In Between Times
03. Do Your Eyes See Sparks
04. Couches & Carpets
05. Pond
06. Recover
07. Old Hat
08. Mallo Cup
09. Remember the Magic Carpet
10. Even
11. Tokyo Late Night
12. Fortune of Folly
13. Mary Anne

09.23 - Allston MA @ Great Scott
09.24 - Philadelphia, PA @ TBA
09.25 - New York, NY @ Le Poisson Rouge
09.27 - Chicago, IL @ Empty Bottle
09.28 - Cleveland, OH @ Grog Shop
09.29 - Toronto, ON @ El Mocambo
09.30 - Montreal, QC @ Le Divan Orange (Pop Montreal)
10.01 - Washington, DC @ Rock & Roll Hotel

• Mice Parade:
• FatCat Records:

Nite Jewel asks Am I Real?, feel free to reply on her tour

Ramona Gonzalez, better known as Nite Jewel, will be going on a li’l tour across the US in support of her upcoming EP titled Am I Real?, performing alongside a myriad of other artists who you just might know.

Am I Real? is available right now as a digital download on her website and will be released on vinyl via Gloriette Records on August 16. The EP was produced in collaboration with Cole M. Greif-Neill, a former guitarist of Ariel Pink’s Haunted Graffiti, with the title track featuring the Los Angeles duo Teen Inc.

P.S. A second album is in the works, and is scheduled to be available in the winter of 2011.

Am I Real? tracklisting:

01. Another Horizon
02. We Want Our Things
03. Forget You & I
04. Falling Far
05. White Lies
06. Am I Real? [ft. Teen Inc.]

The fun-sized Nite Jewel tourdates:

07.29.10 - Los Angeles, CA - Echoplex *
08.09.10 - New York, NY - Mercury Lounge #
08.10.10 - Wilkes-Barre, PA - Cafe Metropolis $
08.11.10 - Allston, MA - Great Scott %
08.12.10 - New Haven, CT - Cafe Nine &
08.13.10 - Philadelphia, PA - Kung Fu Necktie
08.14.10 - Brooklyn, NY - Glasslands $

* Memoryhouse, Baths, Kisses
# Violens, Prince Rama
$ The Samps
% Glasser

• Nite Jewel:
• Gloriette Records: