Joel Ford takes to the sonic skies as Airbird, the newest chillwave superhero, announces upcoming debut EP

Joel Ford takes to the sonic skies as Airbird, the newest chillwave superhero, announces upcoming debut EP

We all know what the Lopatin half of Ford & Lopatin has been up to since the release of their 2011 album, Channel Pressure (TMT Review), but what about Ford? Making reliable American vehicles fit for the every man? No, definitely not. Ford (first name Joel) has been working on a new solo project, Airbird, that’s set to release its debut EP on Software (the label, not the computer program) on May 19!

Titled Trust, and following a limited tape from early last year, the EP will feature the groovier side of the F&L sound and is said to be inspired by Ford’s move from NYC to North Carolina. Based on “Goodnight,” the first track released, there doesn’t seem to be any reason to worry that Ford has taken a sharp left turn from his exploration of dramatic 80s pop mixed with a gloss of contemporary echoed chillwave for Appalachian folk, as much of the tone of Channel Pressure seems intact. For fans of the 2011 release, this is a very good thing indeed, not that there’s anything wrong with North Carolina hill music.

Ford has “Goodnight” streaming over at the Chocolate Grinder, and check his SoundCloud for a number of other catchy Aibird tunes posted over the last nine months. Grab those headphones and get to listening!

• Airbird:
• Software:

Japandroids announce Celebration Rock, shocking the world by enjoying celebration, rock, going on tour

Japandroids have a new album coming out on June 5 through Polyvinyl. It is called Celebration Rock. I am being straight-forward with you, because Japandroids are being straight-forward with you. By titling their record Celebration Rock, they are performing the greatest act of self-appraisal ever accomplished by a musical act. Never mind, Xiu Xiu put out Dear God, I Hate Myself a few years ago. You’re always the bridesmaid, Japandroids.

Don’t look so down, guys. You do have a new single, one by the name of “The House That Heaven Built,” coming out on May 15. While that song will appear on Celebration Rock, it also counts as the fourth entry in their 7-inch singles series. You remember that one, right? Back in 2010, when we were all blasting “Younger Us” out of our junky old cars and drinking soda pops. Like usual with that series, the single features a cover for its B-side, namely “Jack the Ripper” by Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds. Listen to that single (but not the Nick Cave cover, sorry nerds) over at Japandroids’ website.

In about a month, Japandroids will head out on a pretty lengthy tour, because that’s what Japandroids do. I mean, these guys tour more than a robot built to only go on tours, but not really do anything, just go places to go there and waste some time on stage. Why did somebody build that robot?

Celebration Rock tracklist:

01. The Nights of Wine and Roses
02. Fire’s Highway
03. Evil’s Sway
04. For the Love of Ivy
05. Adrenaline Nightshift
06. Younger Us
07. The House that Heaven Built
08. Continuous Thunder

Japandroids dates:

05.17.12 - Cardiff, UK - Club Ifor Bach
05.18.12 - Brighton, UK - Green Door Store
05.19.12 - Amsterdam, Netherlands - Paradiso
05.21.12 - Bristol, UK - Cooler
05.22.12 - London, UK - CAMP (basement)
05.23.12 - Manchester, UK - Soup Kitchen
05.24.12 - Glasgow, UK - King Tuts
05.25.12 - Leeds, UK - Cockpit 2
05.26.12 - Nottingham, UK - Bodega
05.31.12 - Barcelona, Spain - Pac del Forum (Primavera Sound)
06.11.12 - Seattle, WA - Neumos
06.12.12 - Portland, OR - Doug Fir
06.14.12 - San Francisco, CA - Independent
06.15.12 - Los Angeles, CA - Echoplex
06.16.12 - San Diego, CA - Casbah
06.19.12 - Denver, CO - Larimer Lounge
06.21.12 - Chicago, IL - Lincoln Hall
06.22.12 - Cleveland, OH - Grog Shop
06.23.12 - Toronto, ON - Horseh
06.25.12 - Montreal, QC - La Sala Rossa
06.26.12 - Boston, MA - Brighton Music Hall
06.27.12 - New York, NY - Bowery Ballroom
06.29.12 - Philadelphia, PA - Johnny Brenda’s
06.30.12 - Washington, DC - Rock & Rock Hotel
07.03.12 - Minneapolis, MN - 7th Street Entry
07.07.12 - Vancouver, BC - Biltmore

• Japandroids:
• Polyvinyl:

Pauline Oliveros gets 12-CD box of early tape music and cupcakes from Important Records to celebrate her 80th birthday

Pauline Oliveros, American accordionist and composer who is also a central figure in the development of post-war electronic art music, and recent winner of the John Cage Award, will be celebrating her 80th birthday this year with a 12-CD box set of early tape music released via Important Records. The box set, titled Reverberations: Tape and Electronic Music 1961-1970, will be released May 22. This, by the way, makes Oliveros a Gemini. Uh-oh! Her actual b-day is May 30, if you want to send a card.

The set begins with Oliveros’ very first home-recorded tape in 1961, and then chronologically follows her visits and experiments at various universities’ Electronic Music Studios, the majority of which has never been commercially released. Also included are extensive liner notes by Oliveros herself and essays by Alex Chechile, Ramon Sender, David Bernstein, and Corey Arcangel. And like all album releases these days, this one also has a video trailer; you can watch it below.

Reverberations: Tape and Electronic Music 1961-1970 tracklisting:

Disc 1 (Pauline Oliveros Home Electronic Music Studio 1961):
01. Time Perspectives

Disc 2 (San Francisco Tape Music Center 1964-1966):
01. Mnemonics I
02. Mnemonics II
03. Mnemonics III

Disc 3 (San Francisco Tape Music Center 1964-1966):
01. Mnemonics IV
02. Mnemonics V

Disc 4 (University of Toronto Electronic Music Studio 1966):
01. II of IV
02. III of IV
03. IV of IV
04. V of IV
05. III

Disc 5 (University of Toronto Electronic Music Studio 1966):
01. Team & Desecrations Improvisation
02. The Day I Disconnected the Erase Head and Forgot to Reconnect It
03. Jar Piece

Disc 6 (University of Toronto Electronic Music Studio 1966):
01. Another Big Mother
02. Fed Back 1
03. Fed Back 2

Disc 7 (University of Toronto Electronic Music Studio 1966):
01. 5000 Miles
02. Angel Fix

Disc 8 (University of Toronto Electronic Music Studio 1966):
01. Bottoms Up 1
02. Nite
03. Ringing the Mods 1 Heads
04. Ringing the Mods 2 Tails
05. Three Pieces I
06. Three Pieces II
07. Three Pieces III

Disc 9 (Mills Tape Music Center 1966-1967):
01. Big Slow Bog
02. Boone Bog

Disc 10 (Mills Tape Music Center 1966-1967):
01. Bog Bog
02. Mind Bog

Disc 11 (Mills Tape Music Center 1966-1967 / University of California San Diego Electronic Music Studio 1967-1970):
01. Mewsack
02. 50-50 1 Heads
03. 50=50 2 Tails

Disc 12 (University of California San Diego Electronic Music Studio 1967-1970):
01. A Little Noise in the System
02. Red Horse Headache

• Pauline Oliveros:
• Important:

Kraftwerk claim new album is coming “soon,” which is a German unit of time corresponding to the length of exactly one Ring Cycle.

We all know that legendarily non-chatty German electronic musicians Kraftwerk have been in the news lately for dazzling some lucky mofos at New York’s Museum of Modern Art during their recent eight-night residency there, during which the band consecutively performed eight albums from their classic “catalogue” (Autobahn through Tour de France) in full, as well as a bunch of their favorite Bruce Springsteen and Moldy Peaches covers. Furthermore, we’re all aware now that guys that don’t talk much tend to sound really wise and important when they do open their mouths to say something. So it should come as no surprise that, when founding pocket calulator-operator Ralf Hütter told the New York Times (via The Quietus) that the band are currently at work on a new record and that, in his words, would be ready for release “soon,” everybody in the music scene went totally ape shit! James Murphy brought back LCD Soundsystem, Kurt Cobain came forward and admitted that he’s been alive all this time disguised as Taylor Hawkins, and federal governments around the world quickly passed laws mandating that “Happy Birthday to You” be permanently replaced by all eight sobering minutes of Trans-Europe Express’s “Hall of Mirrors.” Hooray?

Anyway, upon its arrival, said new album will mark the band’s first release in almost a decade (the most recent being 2003’s Tour de France Soundtracks), not to mention the first album following the departure of co-founding member Florian Schneider back in 2008. But why has it been taking so long to press down a special key and play a little melody?

“We didn’t fall asleep,” Hütter says. “The 168-hour week is still going on since the beginning, since 1970 […] Music is never finished. It starts again tomorrow. The record is just a record, but for us it’s nearly boring. We like better the programs that we can operate with. So we are operating, we are upgrading, we are updating continuously. There’s continuous reprogramming going on, and composition and new concepts are also coming […] We learn from noise, and we learn from going to clubs.” So, there. I guess the answer is for you to shut up and stop asking questions.

• Kraftwerk:
• Kling Klang:
• EMI:

St. Vincent and David Byrne to release collaborative album after bonding over their mutual love of glassy-eyed stares

David Byrne couldn’t have been more thrilled to see St. Vincent’s Annie Clark at the NYC Björk/Dirty Projectors benefit show:

And to be honest, Annie Clark wasn’t doing a very good job hiding her admiration for the former Talking Heads leader, either:

Both approached each other after a few shots and rushes of adrenalin and then burst into laughter seeing the other’s nervous grin, realizing before speaking that they had a musical bond needing exploration and positivity:

The duo quickly developed a freewheeling chemistry and decided (with glee) that a full-length collaboration of songs was in order, trading off vocals and penning melodies together in a burst of joyful inspiration. Visions of a dream tour together played in a loop at the back of both their minds:

Finally, the album was complete and the pair parted ways. A release date for the collab was set for the fall of 2012, and as quickly as it began, it was over. Until then they’d both have to knuckle down and return to the drudgery of their separate lives:

• St. Vincent:
• David Byrne:

Sic Alps cover Tronics for their fourth 7-inch of the last 9 months; new album arriving in September

Sic Alps were quiet for the first half of 2011 after dropping their Napa Asylum album-plus (TMT Review) at the top of the year and parting ways with longtime band member Matt Hartman, but as of August, Mike Donovan and [Ty Segall + whoever else] have been piling up even more singing tape experiments in as many permutations of the 7-inch format as possible. First there was the Breadhead EP, led by the first Neil Von Harmonson-penned Alps “smash hit” and carried through two other excursions to a straight garage cover of The Wailers’ “Can’t You See.” Then one month passed and a classy single was debuted, “Battery Townsley” b/w “Cambridge Vagina.”

From there, Alps disappeared and reappeared again in January with a big fat 23-song-slice medley called Vedley and pressed onto a third 7-inch. Next Tuesday, April 24, the 7-inch series takes a bow with four covers of UK spiritual forefathers Tronics, via the Pangea Globe EP. Marvel as Donovan and co. do the “Squiddley Diddley”; thrill to their signature stylings on “Shark Fucks”!

And if that ain’t enough, how’s about a new, as-yet-untitled 10-track LP in September? Consider it done. And head here to download a buncha their best shows for free. 1 Love.

Pangea Globe tracklisting:

A1. Baby’s in a Coma
A2. Shark Fucks
B1. Spending Time
B2. Squiddley Diddley

• Sic Alps:
• Drag City: