SSM Make Sweet, Sweet EP, Tour

If you keep up with the world of news headlines that warrant use of the phrase "this is not a joke," you've probably heard about the unlikely marriage of Nike and LCD Soundsystem. It's all true. The group did indeed record a 45:33 track for the hypergiant-ultramonstrosotile-conglomogasm, aptly titled "45:33." The track is available for purchase on iTunes for slightly more than what an average Nike factory worker makes in one year ($9.99 USD).

Okay, okay, you knew all of this already. But do you know the detailed story of how the track was recorded? It's really quite fascinating. It all started when a Nike board member found himself taking jiu-jitsu classes with LCD frontman James Murphy. Murphy often forces everyone in his workout group to listen to Daft Punk, for reasons obvious to fans - and it just so happened that the board member was a fan of DP's song "Digital Love." Apparently, digital love is something that Nike is actually developing in laboratories, to be heavily marketed, manufactured overseas, and sold in easily consumable units called "Swooshes." (Look for it in your local shopping mall by the end of the decade). Anyway, the two got to talking, one thing led to another, and LCD Soundsystem soon found themselves recording a track for Nike.

After accepting, the band dove into the project. They really wanted to get people pumped up when they listened to "45:33." To really make them sweat. And suddenly it all became clear to them. Murphy and Co. knew exactly what they needed to do. Soon, they boarded a private jet which would take them all the way to a shoe factory at an undisclosed location in Indonesia to learn the art of sweating from those who know it best: employees in a Nike sweatshop. After meticulous observation and detailed note-taking, LCD were finally in the right mindset and ready to record. Afterward, they flew back in the same private jet, which had since been outfitted with an in-plane spa and racquetball court. Nike was very pleased with the results, and even rewarded the group for their efforts with an advance case of 100 Swooshes.

Now you know the full, uncensored, totally factual story. "45:33" can be found on iTunes, and digital love should be out shortly.

Voxtrot Do What They Do Best: Release New EP

I really like EPs. Who's with me? I know, lately everyone thinks of them as some sort of album preview. Wolf Parade, Cold War Kids, and others just compile those (usually newly recorded) EP songs for their first LP. It makes it weird then to think about, because what a good EP does is it makes you want to hear more and wish that group's undoubtedly impending LP (with all new songs, 'cuz you're greedy) would reach your ears toot-sweet.

Austin's own Voxtrot love the EP. They have released two in the last two years (three in the last three, if you count their locally-sold, 2003 CD-R EP), and have just announced their intension to release another one. November 7 will see that EP (on CD and 7-inch), Your Biggest Fan, coming out in the U.S. only on PlayLouder/Beggars Group. While PlayLouder has stated that an LP may come out in early 2007, the V says on their web site that "it's going to be a while before the world sees a Voxtrot long-player" and that this EP will have to hold over you Voxtrot-ters out there. Ramesh Srivastava, (Vocals, Guitar) says on his blog "We [Voxtrot] should (fingers crossed) be recording an album in London during November and December." Until then, you Voxtrot-iacs will just have to take solace in the EP and few tour stops.

Your Biggest Fan tracklist

1. Your Biggest Fan
2. Trouble
3. Sway


10.26.06 - Houston, TX - Walters On Washington #
10.27.06 - Denton, TX - Hailey's #
10.28.06 - Austin, TX - Emo's *#
11.01.06 - Los Angeles, CA - Troubadour &
11.02.06 - San Francisco, CA - Popscene ^
11.04.06 - San Francisco, CA - Great American Music Hall #
11.05.06 - Chicago, IL - Empty Bottle #
11.06.06 - New York, NY - Bowery Ballroom
11.07.06 - New York, NY - Bowery Ballroom

* = w/ Beirut
^ = w/ Love Is All
# = w/ Yellow Fever

posted by c. schell

The Stooges Recording First Album Since 1973; Iggy Pop, Experiencing Writer’s Block, Makes Every Song a Big The Adventures of Pete and Pete Reference

(The only confirmed show so far is an appearance at the All Tomorrow's Parties Nightmare Before Christmas 2006 event, curated by Thurston Moore and running December 8-11. The Stooges will actually be playing two performances there, one on the first night and another on the penultimate. Besides The Stooges, My Cat Is An Alien are also playing — and probably some other bands? If any of you want to read more about the recording process, you should get on the Internet and read Mike Watt's blog about it.)

Gnarls Barkley Hook Up With Red Hot Chili Peppers For Red Hot Tour; Prognosis: HOT!!!

It started a couple of months ago, I guess. Peeping Tom called and asked if I fancied going out for a few beers. I knew that he hung out with Gnarls Barkley, and I had a bit of a thing for Gnarls at the time, so I thought, what the hell. I arrived at the bar, and Justin was already there, chatting with Gnarls. We chatted, got along fine, but it became pretty clear pretty quickly that nothing was happening. This was Gnarls Barkley, with a gajillion platinum records under her belt, and here's me, lowly lil' nunpuncher, with his busted Superstars and unfashionable haircut. Talk all you like about feelings and being genuine, but a girl's gotta have standards, and I fell short. Hey, it's cool. It happens.

Anyway, that's when Red Hot Chili Peppers came over. I had heard of him, although we didn't really move in the same circles. He struck me as a bit loudmouthed, a bit sure of himself, but apparently he's bloody rich, so fair play to him. Gnarls certainly took a shine to him. Laughed like a train when he made some dumb joke about French people. In the end, I got drunk and depressed, so I pretended I had work in the morning and left.

So, that was then and this is now. I can't say I've changed my opinion a lot about Red, but he seems to make Gnarls happy, and that's something, at least. Me, I ended up hooking up with some unsigned band from Coventry. Pleasant enough, but, like, I don't know if it's going to last. I still see Gnarls around quite a lot, although she's busy preparing the deluxe version of her debut album. It's limited edition, with a DVD, a 92-page booklet, four music videos and some new songs. She's getting it all ready for November 7. It's cool, we're friends now. But it all seems to have got pretty serious pretty quick for her and Red. She says that he invited her on a tour. Oh so very romantic. They're gonna play all over the USA, although they haven't decided where yet. You can imagine, though — nothing but the biggest, finest stadiums for good ol' Red. Ah well. I can't say I'm not jealous, but good luck to them.

Figurines are Touring! It’s Totally Time for a Music-Themed Re-Interpretation of Everyone’s Favorite Danish Folk Tale, “The Troll Turned Cat”

The story goes that there lived an aging metal-vocal troll in North Jutland, Denmark. He was mean to all, and we'll call him "King Diamond" because he kind of looked like King Diamond. When King returned home from a long night pissing about at the tavern screaming about "Tetragrammaton," "family ghosts," and other such shit in his trademark makeup and top hat, he found his beautiful young bride in bed with one of the village's talented indie gringos. Some say this punk was fairly decent at handball also, which, as anyone with wits knows, is a proven panty-remover. Even in this notorious liberal country, this was too much for King. It sounds harsh, but imagine if you walked in on a sight like this! The brute was mad with pain and was about to challenge the whippersnapper to a "manhood and melody" clash, as was the mode of duel back then and is still now. He quickly remembered that his one-inch shrivel-pickle and tone deafness might have precipitated his piss-poor predicament in the first place. The shrapnel-voiced troll instead simply threatened the horny homewrecker by promising eventually to take his life. Fearing Diamond's retaliation the young up-and-cummer quickly decided to quit the scene entirely and turned himself into a cat. After all, he had heard tales of King's previous threats. He had often been heard proclaiming "death to false metal!" and believe me, although false metal is still living, it hasn't really been the same since. Anyway, the boy left and uprooted a few towns over with a lonely single man named Splat.

The newborn cat lived for quite a while, as comfortable as any starving-musician-turned-cat could possibly live: saucers of milk at the ready, nibbles of delicious food tossed from the supper table, and plenty of catnip for relaxin'. And who's going to turn down ample time for carefree licks at his own groinal region, I ask you? Life was a big bowl of coziness, or hygge if you prefer.

One day, Cat laid in wait for his master Splat to return from the hard grind at the Danish newspaper Jyllands-Posten, where he worked drawing cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad wearing a turban made of bombs. Upon his return, Splat bounded through the front door and called out to his four-legged friend, "I have to tell you what happened today min kat! I was walking home by way of and a bum rolled out of the bushes and said:

'Herre Splat

Tell yer cat

That King Diamond is dead.' "

The man-as-cat, as man-as-cats often do, stood up on his hind legs and with a bit of a cocky swagger, simply claimed, "Well, if what you say is true, I gotta bolt and go back from where I first came." Much to Splat's amazement, the cat then hurried over the hills (did I mention there were hills nearby?) and sure enough was losing no time at all making advances toward his old flame, the fresh young widow.

There may be more to this bizarre folk tale than I care to remember (or have time to make up right now), but I will conclude the yarn by saying the young music man eventually told his beloved to eff off, and then he went and formed a band with three fellow countrymen called Figurines, who are loved to this day.

Oh Tiny children of the Mix Tape, Figurines have now traveled to the Northern Americas to play their little ceramic hearts out. And because everyone knows how in-demand Danish indie pop is to turntablists, their excellent second album, Skeleton, will be available on vinyl via The Control Group. By the way, here's the moral of the uselessness posted above: don't swear vengence on Figurines at any of the shows below or these well hung, gifted Danes just may steal your girlfriend or turn into a cat or, er, abandon you after a bit of time.

Um, or something.

10.23.06 - Chicago, IL - Schubas
10.24.06 - Minneapolis, MN - 400 Bar
10.27.06 - Los Angeles, CA - Spaceland
10.28.06 - San Francisco, CA - Rickshaw Stop
10.30.06 - Portland, OR - Doug Fir Lounge
10.31.06 - Seattle, WA - Crocodile Cafe #
11.01.06 - New York, NY - Mercury Lounge (CMJ)
11.02.06 - New York, NY - Cake Shop (CMJ Juryrig Party)

* w/ You Am I
# w/ The Ark

Finally, Someone Notices that the Album Needs Saving! Insound to the Rescue!

After years of gradual decline at the hands of irresponsible downloaders across the globe, the album is getting a little push into the limelight for a moment.

Insound, the online music retailer known for its selection of mostly indie CDs and records, has launched its own version of an MP3 store. The twist? To buy a song, you must buy the album as a whole.

As someone who fully endorses albums vs. songs, (see my commentary on How Legal Downloads Will Kill The Album Dead), I am ecstatic that someone is promoting the album-sale concept. Truthfully, I do actually believe that the "songs you hear on the radio" should cost more than the other songs; even if just to get people to buy albums.

Feel free to send me e-mails telling me I'm an old fogie if you want, but I still enjoy putting on a 12-inch slab of wax with my dentures out. When I talk, it sounds something like this: