A Ponys Listening Party? You Bring the Whips, I’ll Bring the Chains and Leather.

Barbaro is dead. Multiple fractures in his right hind leg meant multiple operations over the past eight months and resulted in multiple broken hearts from wannabe horse whisperers and shifty bookies throughout the land. Before you think the 2006 Kentucky Derby winner was put down by a cruel ownership conglomerate (Barbaro: "Oh c'mon bosses, you can't do this!" / Owners: "Well, what have you done for me, Barbaro?" / Barbaro: "Uh, I won the fucking Kentucky Derby, ass-wads." / Owners: "Well, what have you done for me lately???"), this sort of thing unfortunately happens all too often with suffering horses. The three-year-old colt whinnied for the last time on January 29 after continually failing to recuperate from shattering his leg at the Preakness Stakes last year. Not all lame horses have to be put down (one even went on to win a Best Actress Oscar for her role in Erin Brockovich), but given Barbaro's devastating injury and subsequent ailments resulting from the broken leg, there was no choice in the matter.

But just as "every time a door closes, another opens," every time a horse gets euthanized another four take its place. Or something like that. Stunned into action by the recent news of its fellow equine's demise, Chicago's quartet of strong studs and fiery mare, The Ponys, have announced the imminent arrival of a new album called Turn the Lights Out on March 20. It is the band's third album and first for Matador Records, who wisely signed the skuzz-rock muckers back in September. Turn the Lights Out was recorded by John Agnello (The Hold Steady, Sonic Youth) at Steve Albini's Electrical Audio.

It's all in the breeding: