Michael Gira Responds to Swans “Reunion” Claims, Releases Limited-Edition CD/DVD to Raise Money

Yay! The rumored new Swans album/tour which we reported last year is less of a rumor! Details about the legendary post-punk/no wave group’s upcoming new album and “tour(s)” are fairly scant, but the important thing is that THIS SHIT IS ON.

Last week, frontman Michael Gira announced that the band would be reforming on Swans’ MySpace page and posted a new acoustic track, “Jim,” one of several potential songs to be recorded on the new album. In order to raise money for recording costs, Gira is releasing a CD of these potential Swans acoustic tracks that will come with a DVD of two live shows. Entitled I Am Not Insane, the release will be limited to 1,000 copies.

Ordering info and further explanation from Gira can be found here. Just don’t call it a “reunion.”

The new Swans lineup, according to the MySpace post:

• Michael Gira / gtr / voice / mendicant friar act (original Swans)
• Norman Westberg - Guitar (original Swans)
• Christophj Hahn - Guitar (mid period Swans and most Angels of Light)
• Phil Puleo - Drums, percussion, dulcimer etc etc (final Swans tour and
most Angels)
• Chris Pravdica - Bass and gadgets (Flux Information Sciences /
Services / Gunga Din)
• Thor Harris, Drums, percussion, vibes, dulcimer, curios, etc etc…
(Angels, now also with Shearwater)

No word on tourdates yet, but Mr. Gira, if you’re sitting around reading news stories about your band getting back together, just let me ask that you to puuhhlllllllleaaaaaase come to Minneapolis!

Radiohead’s Kid A at #100 on Billboard Charts

Kid A is back on the Billboard 200, at #100. Of course, placing high on all those decade lists (posted before the decade was over) surely helped, but if we’re talking aesthetic posterity, it’s hard to think of a better example than Kid A. Check out this interesting Kid A-era Thom Yorke interview:

By the way, Kid A is also #24 on the digital albums charts, so the significance of the re-entry ain’t so easily attributed to the digital/physical dichotomy. Sorry!

Just like heaven: Kurt Vile joins Dinosaur Jr. for the dreamiest of all tours

Some musical pairings just naturally go together. Sonny and Cher. Morrissey and Marr. U2 and recent tour openers Black-Eyed Peas. (Wait, what?) And now we can add to those elite ranks the legendary Dinosaur Jr. and new tourmates Kurt Vile & The Violators. J.Mascis recently listed Vile’s Childish Prodigy in his top picks of 2009. Mr. Mascis, you’re one of my top picks for 2010… for making this tour happen. Ahhhhh….

01.15.10 - Milford, CT - Daniel Street #
01.16.10 - New York, NY - Bowery Ballroom #
01.17.10 - Brooklyn, NY - Music Hall of Williamsburg #
01.19.10 - Ithaca, NY - Castaways #
01.20.10 - Kingston, ON - The Ale House #

February shows with Fucked Up:

02.12.10 - Oberlin, OH - The �Sco (Dionysus Disco) @ Oberlin College @
02.13.10 - Chicago, IL - Empty Bottle @
02.14.10 - Bloomington, IN - Video Saloon @
02.15.10 - Newport, KY - Southgate House @
02.16.10 - Baltimore, MD - Ottobar @
02.18.10 - Hoboken, NJ - Maxwell’s @
02.19.10 - Brooklyn, NY - Europa @
02.20.10 - Boston, MA - Middle East Downstairs @
02.21.10 - Montreal QUE, UE - La Sala Rossa
02.26.10 - Toronto, ON - Opera House @

# with Dinosaur Jr.
@ with Fucked Up

Mos Def, K’naan Play Austin City Limits’ First Hip-Hop Show, Thus Destroying Genre Barriers Forever

Hey kids! You want to know some fun facts about Austin City Limits, everybody’s favorite PBS-broadcast live music program? Well, here we go!

• Fun Fact #1 - Every performer on the show has breathed oxygen.
• Fun Fact #2 - Every performer on the show needs food and water on a fairly regular basis to survive.
• Fun Fact #3 - In the show’s 35-year history, there has never been an all-hip-hop show.

Now, facts #1 and #2 will, barring a robot invasion of the music industry, remain intact in the future. However, the days of fact #3 are numbered. On January 16, Austin City Limits will broadcast their first hip-hop show, featuring up-and-coming Somali-Canadian MC K’naan. Also, some guy named Mos Def, who you may have heard of. I believe he was in Be Kind Rewind.

Air to Tour North America in Support of Love 2

Nicolas Godin and Jean-Benoît Dunckel, a.k.a. Air, will be returning to the U.S. for a set of live shows, their first in three years barring a date in New York on their last international tour. The duo will be taking on full vocal and instrumental duties, the only tour addition being drummer Alex Thomas. You can expect a mixture of the new and old, with re-interpretations of cuts from their latest album Love 2, as well as songs from their burgeoning back catalog. Before coming to the U.S., Air will be playing numerous dates in Europe, which can be checked out in full here.


03.13.09 - Miami, FL - Fillmore
03.14.09 - Orlando, FL - Hard Rock Live
03.15.09 - Atlanta, GA - Centerstage
03.17.09 - Washington, DC - 9:30 Club
03.18.09 - Philadelphia, PA - Electric Factory
03.19.09 - New York, NY - Terminal 5
03.20.09 - Boston, MA - Berklee Performance Center
03.22.09 - Montreal, QC - Metropolis
03.23.09 - Toronto, ON - Phoenix Concert Theatre
03.24.09 - Chicago, IL - Riviera Theatre
03.26.09 - Oakland, CA - Fox Theatre
03.27.09 - San Diego, CA - 4th & B
03.28.09 - Los Angeles, CA - Walt Disney Concert Hall