Merge To Reissue Big Dipper Discography Including Previously Unreleased Album; Tom Scharpling Soars Into The Night Sky On A Jet Of Satisfaction

Perhaps you are unfamiliar with the fertile Boston music scene of the late ‘80s -- like most of the TMT staff, I wasn't born until 15 years later - but one of the most highly-regarded and under-appreciated rawk bands of that time was Big Dipper. Formed in 1985, the band managed to release one EP (Boo-Boo) and two bitchin' (my word is law) LPs (Heavens, Craps) before throwing in the sweat-soaked towel in ‘92. After that year, the Boston area entered a police state and no one dared mention the band for fear of immediate castration.

UNTIL NOW: the kind folks at Merge have announced that they will be remastering and reissuing all of the band's output March 18, 2008 in a 3-disc anthology, including an unreleased album culled from their final recording sessions in the early ‘90s, entitled Very Loud Array -- hopefully a description of the sounds within. The set is called Supercluster: The Big Dipper Anthology, and as an added feature, it will include nine bonus tracks, one video, and liner notes by "The Best Show on WFMU" host and fellow latter-day Seinfeld hater, Tom Scharpling, who campaigned to reunite the band in 2004 but was cruelly denied.

Speaking of reuniting the band, the original lineup of Big Dipper is currently working out their abs and investing in Rogaine before a planned East Coast reunion tour in April 2008. Precise dates are still being hammered out, but depending on how many drunk guys spill beer on their amps, shorting them out halfway through the shows, there may be a tour of the midwest later in the year.

Yes, no precise dates yet, but until then, may I recommend some other, far more delectable precise dates?

Tracklisting:

Disc 1:

New Kate Bush Song for Movie; Song Will Play During Credits

Kate Bush will release her first new material since 2005's Aerial in the
form of a song on a soundtrack. The soundtrack is for the film The Golden
Compass
, a film based on a fantasy novel by Philip Pullman.

The track, "Lyra," is named after the title character in the film, Lyra
Belacqua. Written and produced by Bush and also featuring the
University of Oxford's Magdalen College choir, the song will play during the closing credits of the film.

The Golden Compass will play in theaters starting December 7, 2007, while the soundtrack will be released December 11, 2007 via New Line records.

‘Tis the season for a Björk tour; New UK and Japan Dates

What does the holiday season mean to you? As the snow starts to fall, the days grow shorter and the Salvation Army Santas reappear after their summer hibernation; families come together from all around the world to share in the love and warmth of the holidays. For most people, the whatever-December-holiday-you-celebrate season is a time to enjoy elaborate feasts and a healthy serving of alcoholic holiday cheer.

Seriously, %*@^ those people. Must be nice. Last year my family watched The Coneheads movie and my grandma gave us a rundown of all the people in their town who had died that year. There were lots of awkward silences and no wassail whatsoever. I got towels for a present. Not that I’m complaining or anything; the whole experience just made me realize the importance of inviting at least one super fun, totally interesting person to ensure the success of your festivities. Logically, this person would be Björk.

Just imagine. There’s absolutely no way this could go wrong. Björk is just so vibrant and vivacious, you have to love her! She would bring magical pies full of candy, and when conversation flagged, she would hop up onto the table and perform an innovative and beautiful song that she had written just for the occasion. Wherever she walked, sparkles would fall! It would be the best holiday season ever.

Now, this might not end up happening exactly as outlined in the above scenario, but the magic of Björk is guaranteed to make an impression on lucky concertgoers in Britain and Japan this spring. The lovely Icelandic lady and some musician friends will be touring in support of the single “Declare Independence,” ensuring that the post-holiday months will truly be the most wonderful time of the year.

* Big Day Out Festival

[Photo: Zach Klein]

Joe Lally (Fugazi bassist) and Capillary Action Tour Van Broken Into

On Thursday night, thieves broke into the van of Joe Lally and Capillary Action, stealing a shitload of their equipment. The theft occurred sometime between 3 AM and 10 AM "on the corner of Valencia and Clinton Park in San Francisco," according to Capillary Action frontman Jon Pfeffer*.

Here's a list of what was stolen:

- Roland KC350 Amp with bent corner
- Yamaha S03 Keyboard with cracked side
- Alesis QS7 Keyboard
- Sharp VLNZ50U MiniDV Recorder w/ 3" Color LCD Screen (you'll find footage from last night's show in Palo Alto inside)
- Samsonite Brown Suitcase

Please contact Jon (capillaryaction@gmail.com, 267-934-6537) if you have any information regarding the theft. And a message to the thief/thieves: c'mon!

Joe Lally's latest solo album There to Here was released in 2006, while his side project Ataxia released its second album AW II earlier this year. Meanwhile, Capillary Action's second "official" release So Embarassing came out on their own Pangaea Recordings.

Joe Lally and Capillary Action have a handful of dates left on the tour, where Capillary Action is both opening each show and serving as Joe Lally's backup band.

Joe Lally + Capillary Action tourdates:

* Jon Pfeffer is a former TMT writer.

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