Paul McCartney reissues 1971’s Ram in six dizzying formats, which is just fine by me!

Paul McCartney reissues 1971's Ram in six dizzying formats, which is just fine by me!

It’s a scenario you’re bound to encounter if you spend enough time near the “M” section in any record store anywhere. Or maybe even in “P” if your local LP parlor happens to be yokel-owned and operated:

Sweaty dude #1: Goddammit Paul McCartney sucks.

Sweaty dude #2: Yeah, but Ram is pretty good.

Sweaty dude #1: Yeah. (Wipes nose on Rush shirt)


Yes, bewitching and fully realized fictional constructs, Paul and Linda McCartney’s 1971 album is indeed a good one. So good in fact that the Droopy Dog Beatle himself is reissuing the ever-loving shit out of it on May 22. Presumably still high off of winning 2012’s Best Historical Album Grammy for his mammoth reissue of Band on the Run (seriously) and the McCartney/McCartney II reissues, Sir Paul is letting go of the horns and unleashing Ram on the public in no fewer than six different formats. Fans can choose from the standard single-disc CD with the original 12-song lineup, or the two-disc special edition with eight bonus tracks, or the four-CD/one-DVD/one-112-page-book deluxe box set, or the double-LP 180-gram vinyl, or the single-disc limited edition mono vinyl, or just fucking downloading it on iTunes. Tracklists aren’t available yet for all those bonus features, so keep a close eye on AARP Magazine’s culture section for the next couple weeks or just play “Long Haired Lady” on a constant loop until the answer reveals itself upon the dancing wind or something.

Ram tracklisting:

01. Too Many People
02. 3 Legs
03. Ram On
04. Dear Boy
05. Uncle Albert/Admiral Halsey
06. Smile Away
07. Heart of the Country
08. Monkberry Moon Delight
09. Eat at Home
10. Long Haired Lady
11. Ram On
12. The Back Seat of My Car

• Paul McCartney:
• Concord Music Group:

Locrian sign to Relapse, reissue expanded The Clearing, work on new material. Hardcore, man.

I sort of knew one kid in high school who was really into metal. I remember how he’d roll into the parking lot every morning with his windows down, blaring something frenetic and fast and a little bit scary. I wasn’t sure what to think, because at that point, I just wanted to listen to The Shins and Death Cab for Cutie and Stars.

I don’t listen to much of that same music from high school, but one thing’s definitely still the same: I don’t know shit about metal. I really wanted to crack a clever joke or two about Locrian signing to Relapse, contributing their dark drone-metal to a roster that includes bands with names such as Toxic Holocaust, Dying Fetus, and Agoraphobic Nosebleed, but it looks like I’ll just be spittin’ out the facts, straight up. According to the Chicago Reader, Relapse will reissue Locrian’s vinyl-only The Clearing (TMT Review) as an expanded, two-disc set called The Clearing/The Final Epoch, and before long they’ll be recording new material with producer Greg Norman. Oh, and they recently released a spilt 7-inch with fellow Relapse-ers, Horseback. I’ll just go listen to Chutes Too Narrow now…

• Locrian:
• Relapse:

Warhol Foundation peels away at Velvet Underground lawsuit, moves to get it dismissed

What’s that you hear? Is it the sound of Nico rolling over in her grave, groaning (beautifully, of course) over the recent scuffle between the remaining members of The Velvet Underground (VU) and The Andy Warhol Foundation (AWF) over the licensure of a picture of a banana? Why, yes it is.

Sure, it’s not just any old banana, it’s the Velvet Underground banana! And Apple, with their slick marketing and their scrubbing clean of today’s youth culture, want it! No one ever said to eat a banana a day to keep the doctor away! One might even go so far as to say that the VU banana is one bad apple.

Unfortunately for the VU, their claim to the banana in question is not looking so good. With the filing of their original lawsuit, VU claimed that the banana image comes from the public domain, and now the AWF, the organization trying to license the image to Apple, is claiming that because of this, and because the VU is not actively using their claimed copyright of the image, they should be allowed to do what they want with it. The VU have revised their lawsuit to remove most references to the public domain, but the basis for the AWF’s request that the case be thrown out has been established.

Furthermore, Billboard reports that the AWF’s case states that “‘trademark rights exist only in relation to specific goods and/or services’ and that a word, symbol or design can function as a valid trademark only if the mark is part of an ongoing business.” The last time VU officially licensed the banana was way 11 years ago when they got on the Absolut ad bandwagon (not to mention the fact that they haven’t actually been a band for 40 years). It seems mid-priced vodka is good enough for the likes of John Cale and Lou Reed, but Apple, heavens no!

The question still remains: would the group of consumers that Apple is realistically marketing to even get the reference?

• The Velvet Underground:
• The Andy Warhol Foundation:
• Apple:

Blues Control bequeathing new Valley Tangents album unto Drag City in June, touring Europe w/ Laraaji

Russ Waterhouse and Lea Cho are making up for lost time after a quiet period following the release of Local Flavor (TMT Review) in 2009 (which made the top 20 of our year-end list). In November they released a full-length collaboration with spiritual comedian Laraaji as an entry in RVNG Intl.’s FRKWYS series, which itself contained a near-full-length of bonus jams, and now they’re all finished with a solo album proper, which will be released on Drag City on June 19 as per their contract to release at least one thing on every great label that is currently active.

The new album is called Valley Tangents and was recorded in part at Black Dirt Studios (like the last few releases) and in another part at their peaceful new home in East Pennsylvania. Their new environs and recent ambient work with Laraaji have moved them in the direction of more peaceful sound exploration, in some ways recalling the moody minimal environments of their Watersports alter ego. But don’t even start to entertain the notion that the duo might be abandoning their “signature Debussy via Guaraldi qua Bley qua Hornsby pianisms,” because that’s on the album in spades; Russ Waterhouse told our own Elliott Sharp over at Philadelphia Weekly that the album would be “an expansion on the things we’ve already done.” An East Village Radio interview also reveals that drummer Tatsuya Nakatani will be playing percussion on two tracks. Eventually you’ll be able to preorder the album here — even on cassette if you choose!

In the meantime, Blues Control are bringing ol’ Laraaji on the road with them to spread the belly laughs all over Europe (with one test drive Brooklyn date on March 28). See those dates below, join the thingie on Facebook, and have a truly inspiring day. You are beautiful and you will stay beautiful.

Valley Tangents tracklisting:

01. Love’s a Rondo
02. Iron Pigs
03. Opium Den/Fade to Blue
04. Walking Robin
05. Open Air
06. Gypsum

Blues Control & Laraaji dates:

03.28.12 - Brooklyn, NY - Roulette
04.12.12 - Lisbon, Portugal - Kolovrat 79
04.13.12 - Madrid, Spain - Electrónica en Abril $ #
04.14.12 - Guimarães, Portugal - Centro Cultural Vila Flor
04.15.12 - Vigo, Spain - Club Sinsal
04.18.12 - Bordeaux, France - I.Boat
04.19.12 - Barcelona, Spain - Electrónica en Abril %
04.21.12 - Hasselt, Belgium - KC Belgie ^
04.22.12 - Rotterdam, Netherlands - Worm @
04.25.12 - Paris, France - Le Batofar
04.26.12 - Lausanne, Switzerland - Impetus Fest
04.27.12 - Bologna, Italy - Live Arts Week

$ Hype Williams
# Thomas Köner
% Keith Fullerton Whitman
^ Michael Chapman
@ AU

• Blues Control:
• Laraaji:
• Drag City:

Gorman Bechard directs Grant Hart documentary while everyone else was out acting like Bob Mould was the only dude in Hüsker Dü

Here’s a little history lesson. Hüsker Dü were a massively influential Minneapolis punk rock band comprised of three members: Bob Mould, Bob Mould, and Bob Mould. Well, that’s not true, but doesn’t it seem that way some times? Admittedly, Bob Mould does keep a higher profile, what with Sugar and a million solo albums. And Greg Norton is too busy running restaurants and maintaining that fantastic mustache. What of Grant Hart, though? While not as prolific or mustachioed as his Hüsker Dü compatriots, he’s still put out a fair share of solo material, not to mention his career as a visual artist. If only somebody would make a documentary shedding more light on this unsung punk rock hero.

Well, somebody did. I mean, of course somebody did. Why would I have mentioned it otherwise? That would be insufferable. The alluded documentary is Every Everything by Gorman Bechard, director of Color Me Impressed: A Film About The Replacements and the soon-to-premiere Archers of Loaf concert documentary What Did You Expect?. Every Everything aims to track Hart’s life through one very special interview subject: Grant Hart!!!!?!!! Subjects in Hart’s life that the documentary touches on include Hüsker Dü (duhhhhh), the musician’s early life, his post-Dü music, his art, collaborations with William S. Burroughs and Patti Smith, obsessions with Groucho Marx and Marcel Duchamp, and his love of Studebakers. You know, the cars.

Like Bechard’s other films under his What Were We Thinking Films banner, Every Everything will be partially funded by Kickstarter. Check out the film’s website to donate to the project. If you give more than $10,000, you’ll get (along with a whole lot of other stuff) to have dinner with Grant Hart. Finally, a chance to ask him uncomfortably detailed, annoying questions about “The Girl Who Lives on Heaven Hill”!

Every Everything:
• Gorman Bechard:
• Grant Hart:

Kurt Vile rediscovers the magic of AIM and announces more tourdates

<3tmtnewzzz: hey
xkViLeEeex: hey
<3tmtnewzzz: sup
xkViLeEeex: nm playin sims
xkViLeEeex: u
<3tmtnewzzz: same. chillin
xkViLeEeex: kool
<3tmtnewzzz: heard u added a buncha tour dates!!11!!!
xkViLeEeex: yeah i guess
<3tmtnewzzz: omg can’t wait
<3tmtnewzzz: rly wanna c u and t moore but idk if i can make it!!!1!
<3tmtnewzzz: might c u at roo or something tho!!
xkViLeEeex: g2g


03.22.12 - Baltimore, MD - Rams Head Live # 

03.23.12 - Richmond, VA - Strange Matter #

03.24.12 - Durham, NC - Duke Coffeehouse ^

03.25.12 - Asheville, NC - The Grey Eagle #

04.07.12 - Mexico City, Mexico - Indie O Fest 2012
04.09.12 - Buenos Aires, Argentina - Niceto Club $

04.10.12 - Buenos Aires, Argentina - Niceto Club $

04.11.12 - Porto Alergre, Brazil - Opiniao Bar $

04.12.12 - Sao Paolo, Brazil - Cine Joia $

04.13.12 - Rio de Janeiro, Brazil - Circo Voador $

04.15.12 - Santiago, Chile - Teatro Oriente $
05.17.12 - Lancaster, PA - Chameleon Club %

05.18.12 - Nelsonville, OH - Nelsonville Music Festival

05.19.12 - Ann Arbor, MI - Blind Pig %

05.20.12 - Chicago, IL - Lincoln Hall %

05.21.12 - Madison, WI - High Noon %

05.22.12 - Minneapolis, MN - 400 Bar %

05.23.12 - Fargo, ND - Aquarium %

05.25.12 - Vancouver, BC - Biltmore 
05.26.12 - Gorge, WA - Sasquatch Festival 

05.27.12 - Portland, OR - Star Theater %

05.30.12 - San Francisco, CA - The Fillmore %
06.10.12 - Manchester, TN - Bonnaroo Music & Arts Festival
06.22.12 - Scheessel, Germany - Hurricane Festival

06.23.12 - Neuhausen Ob Eck, Germany - Southside Festival

06.26.12 - Stockholm, Sweden - WWDIS Summer Festival

06.27.12 - Borlange, Sweden - Peace And Love Festival
07.08.12 - Amsterdam, Netherlands - Melkweg

07.12.12 - Benicàssim, Spain - Benicàssim Festival
08.03.12 - Katowice, Poland - OFF Festival

# Supreme Dicks and Sore Ero
^ Supreme Dicks
$ Thurston Moore
% Black Bananas

• Kurt Vile:
• Matador: