Maritime Went: (1) On Tour Yesterday; (2) Back To Being Slept-On

What happened? In 2005, when Maritime released their sophomore LP, We, The Vehicles (Flameshovel), they were praised for their sped-up Midwestern-Smiths sound, and rightly so. Since the release of the band's latest LP, Heresy & the Hotel Choir, just a few weeks ago on Flameshovel, the accolades have been slow to appear, calling to mind the response to the band's first, more understated LP from 2004, Glass Floor. So why have Maritime gone back to being more slept-on than your Narcoleptic, pot-smoking roommate's bed?

The new album is, if i may speak frankly, Mr. or Mrs. TMT reader, better than anything the band has ever done. It is absolutely brimming with songs that are just waiting to thrill audiences at home or in a dark and smelly public venue. I dare you to go to one of the group's shows and not be swept up in the fuzzbox guitar-hook frenzy. In fact, they have a tour that started (this is where the article turns a bit hypocritical) YESTERDAY! What the hell are you waiting for? Go to a venue on the list below and camp out until Maritime arrives. Show them some freakin fanaticism for once.

Tourdates:

* The One AM Radio

Los Campesinos Says: You! Me! Touring!

GREETINGS FROM LAS VEGAS--

Dear John,

Thanks for the package. It was very nice, particularly the sweets. I'm in one of the cities that never sleeps, but this one says that what happens here, stays here -- except the mail. Don't worry, I'm not hitched yet! But Elvis says hello! How's Vermont? Be home soon, bye love!

SEE YOU IN SEATTLE--

Dear John,

Vegas was a bore. Hitch-hiked up the coast. Almost lost my virginity on the way, but remembered it was lost in Hollywood. I thought of you. Seattle is colder than you said. Remember? I think I'll keep moving, bye love.

OLYMPIA, OH BOY!--

John,

Washington's nice, real cool. Maybe I'll keep going up, real gold rush. Ran into my cousin Deb, she's living here. Divorced now, her kid's got no direction. Going to California. So easy. He doesn't know what it's like coming from the east. Bye.

VANCOUVER, ITS THE PLACE--

"Billy,"

I jumped the border. Can't come home now, laying low. Anyway, found someone new. Your replacement is here; he says hey. He's into music, you'd love it. I read poetry before some concert, me, can you believe it? Follow the music, he says.

REMEMBER CALGARY!--

"Steven,"

Moving around, police after me. Calgary is wet, if you can get that. Your replacement says we're in Calgary because of this band, Los Campesinos. Come up to Ottawa? You, me, dancing. Wish you were here, but don't come to this address.

TAKING IT EASY IN OTTAWA--

John,

Police gave up, Canada's not Dirty Harry enough. Los Campesinos recorded an album with some guy -- Dave Newfeld I think. They're calling it Hold On Now, Youngster... and releasing it through something called Wichita. Maybe I'll go there. My poetry's really taking off.

BEST WISHES FROM WINNEPEG--

John,

Fell in love with Los Campesinos, but they broke my heart. They keep moving. I love you, sort of. I hate Canada, sort of. Your replacement won't sleep with me anymore, which is okay, really. You, me, dancing, that's all I think about. If only I could get back in the US.

TOURDATES:

Corporate Blob That Is EMI Vows to Suck Up “Smaller-Scale Indie Labels”; Sex Pistols Quote Seems Inappropriate Considering How Bad Their Leno Appearance Was

In what, with proper care and handling, could balloon into a full-on debate about the nature of ‘independent’ music, EMI handlers Terra Firma have, via a NY Post report, indicated that, along with other cost-cutting/profit-enhancing measures, the label plans to allocate between $100 million and $200 million for acquiring ‘smaller-scale indie labels.’

Additionaly, Terra Firma, the private equity firm that now owns EMI (TMT News), is looking to cut $223 million in expenses from the bedraggled EMI, including a $31 million slice from U.S. sales and distribution costs and a shift away from business in ‘non-strategic countries.’ The report also indicates that Terra Firma is banking on digital distribution and online marketing to pick up the money-making slack at a lower cost. Just maybe, perhaps, and with a little luck, the practice of having an A&R bro in a blazer drop bucks to schmooze the next hot young band may find itself gone the way of the dodo. Then again: There's unlimited supply.

PLUG Award Nominees Announced

Last night, while watching Grey’s Anatomy (shut up, you love it too), I saw an ad for the American Music Awards. Apparently this year, they’re allowing the public to vote on the winners, instead of having them chosen by a bunch of record industry bigwigs and insiders.

Sorry, AMAs, but no matter what scheme you concoct to make people pay attention to your aging award show, you’ll never match the PLUG Awards. Go ahead and keep Jimmy Kimmel as your host; all of us PLUG fans know that Conan is far superior anyway.

Err, getting back on track, the 2008 PLUG nominations are in, and it should come as no surprise to any of you that the top contenders consist of Battles and Of Montreal -- each with seven nominations.

Like voting? Enjoy democracy? Do your part — place your vote in the PLUG Awards here and let your voice be heard. The last day to vote for such categories as Artist of the Year, Album of the Year, and a veritable slew of others, is February 8.

The winners will be announced at the PLUG Awards Ceremony and Concert, taking place March 6, 2008 at the new Terminal 5 venue in New York City. Maybe Jimmy Kimmel and AMA performers like Alicia Keys and Maroon 5 will even be there. Or maybe I’m just trying to find a way to connect the end of this news story to the beginning of it. Figure it out for yourself... and vote, damnit!

Band of Horses Reject Wal-Mart’s Advances, Lose Potential Cash Money, or: Ben Bridwell Kills Future Chances of Becoming a Wal-Mart Greeter When He Is Old and Grey

It was (apparently) a mix of negative fan reactions and ye good ol’ fashioned righteousness that brought Band of Horses frontman Ben Bridwell to kill a deal with Wal-Mart that would have released rights for the track “The Funeral” to the aforementioned Warehouse O’The Man.

Though Band of Horses did previously release some rights for Cease to Begin tracks to Ford (corporate vroom vroom), Bridwell obviously decided that selling artistic output to big, bad Wal-Mart would make TMT writers too smug in their metaphors. In other words, people like me rushing to finish a story and take the easy way out (i.e., poking fun at Bridwell’s almost-deal-with-the-devil as symbolic of modern-day corporate-American-dream-killing1).

Apparently, profiting from Ford is fine by Bridwell, since calling Ford a corporate dream-killer nowadays is far too grossly anachronistic for any history-loving, metaphor-making fan to muster.

Had this been the 1920s, that metaphor could have been more palpable. If you didn’t have a Model T.2

LONG STORY SHORT: your favorite ponies are touring, continuing to tour, and picking up ladies with sweet Model Ts, and touring, and touring:

Current dates:

Interpol Extend Tour with 2008 Dates, More Great Mysteries Unraveled After These Messages

Maybe Joy Division just didn't reach the same level of prowess in Europe (this is a lie, BTW), but for some reason, Europe is just a-clamorin' for the unique and fresh sound of Interpol in the coming months. Don't get me wrong, "Obstacle 2" appears on one of my favorite driving mixes of all time, eloquently titled "CAR JAMS," but... yeah, that's all I got.

The band has been touring for most of 2007 in support of Our Love to Admire (TMT Review), and as we previously reported (TMT News), a new toy drops during this leg: a deluxe edition of the album arriving November 19 in the UK, including a live performance disc and some of them newfangled music videos. Sheeeit.

Tracklist:

* Blonde Redhead

Oh, and don't even think about naming your band The Interpols. Confused? Keep it tuned right here on TMT...

  

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