Scott Walker (the musician) working on new album for 4AD and an opera score; Scott Walker (the politician) working on new ways to fuck over schools

Scott Walker (the musician) working on new album for 4AD and an opera score; Scott Walker (the politician) working on new ways to fuck over schools

Scott Walker is in the recording booth right now!! I say so because I know so. I know so not because I saw the man wheeling his meat-punching apparatus into the studio but because 4AD, his label for the last few releases, posted this on his timeline: “2011 — Scott begins to record his new album for 4AD Records.” I remember that part of his career!! It was a really exciting time! Most likely set for release sometime in 2012, the album will close a six-year gap since his last album, The Drift, which was our eighth-favorite album of 2006 back when we were all teenagers, and our 28th-favorite album of the 2000s, back when men where men and women loved them for that.

Also of note on his timeline is the news that Scott is composing a fresh new score for the OperaShots series at the Royal Opera House, to be premiered at an unspecified date in 2012. OperaShots are similar to jello shots, but with more of a focus on commissioning new operatic works outside the mainstream. Walker has worked in the theater realm a few times in the last few years, with the instrumental dance piece And Who Shall Go to the Ball? And What Shall Go to the Ball? — released as a limited album on 4AD in 2007 — and another dance piece earlier this year for a Jean Cocteau-inspired performance at the Royal Opera House, called Duet for One Voice. It seems that Scott Walker and opera go together like meat shanks and a sturdy fist. More details coming when they’re available.

• Scott Walker:
• 4AD:

Nurses tour with The Mountain Goats, and they’ll explain the difference between avant-garde folk metal and Viking glam metal

Remember “The Best Ever Death Metal Band in Denton” from the Mountain Goats’ 2002 album All Hail West Texas? Remember that one line about potential band names, “Satan’s Fingers and The Killers and The Hospital Bombers”? Particularly that last name — not the bombers part, just the hospital part. Nurses work in hospitals. So, it’s pretty wild that the psych pop band Nurses will join the Mountain Goats for a tour of the Southern US early next year, right?! Foreshadowing! How did John Darnielle KNOW?

He didn’t know, obviously. Fuck foreshadowing. This isn’t a high school English class. Regardless, Nurses are most definitely hitting the road with The Mountain Goats. Earlier this fall, Nurses released their third album Dracula (TMT Review) on Dead Oceans, and recently they filmed a session with Brooklyn music blog Hooves on the Turf in which they played spare renditions of “New Feelings” and “Trying to Reach You,” both off their latest record. The tour bypasses West Texas, but I have a feeling that Jeff and Cyrus and all the other death metal bands out there will be just fine.

Nurses tourdates:

12.09.11 - Portland, OR - Crystal Ballroom * SOLD OUT
12.31.11 - Portland, OR - Mississippi Studios &
01.14.12 - Salt Lake City, UT - Kilby Court #
01.15.12 - Denver, CO - Hi-Dive
01.19.12 - Austin, TX - Antone’s $
01.20.12 - Houston, TX - Fitzgerald’s $
01.21.12 - New Orleans, LA- Tipitina’s $
01.23.12 - Tallahassee, FL- Club Downunder $
01.24.12 - Orlando, FL - The Social $
01.25.12 - Tampa, FL - Crowbar $
01.27.12 - St. Augustine, FL - The Original Cafe Eleven $
01.28.12 - Atlanta, GA - The Earl $
01.30.12 - Athens, GA - 40 Watt Club $
01.31.12 - Charlotte, NC - Visulite Theatre $
02.02.12 - Asheville, NC - Grey Eagle $
02.03.12 - Greensboro, NC - The Blind Tiger $
02.04.12 - Saxapahaw, NC - The Haw River Ballroom $

* Portugal. The Man
& Radiation City
# Deleted Scenes
$ The Mountain Goats

• Nurses:
• Dead Oceans:
• The Mountain Goats:
• Merge:

Ticketmaster forced to acknowledge their own malevolence, issue refunds to customers for questionable processing fees

Frequent concertgoers will likely be all too familiar with Ticketmaster’s habitual reaming of the consumer via the exorbitant and seemingly totally unnecessary fees they tack onto ticket sales. Now, it appears as though customers are about to go all Jennifer Lopez in Enough on the company’s ass, through some much-needed financial retribution. As Business Insider reports, due to a proposed class action settlement, Ticketmaster is being forced to credit $1.50 per ticket order — up to 17 orders — to those individuals who used the ticket retailer between October 21, 1999 and October 19, 2011. The refund will come in the form of vouchers, which can be redeemed a maximum of two at a time. The redemption period itself will last four years and isn’t scheduled to begin until roughly April 2012. Reportedly, if less than $11.25 million is redeemed over that period, Ticketmaster will then donate the difference to charity. How gracious.

Unfortunately, there’s nothing in the settlement that requires Ticketmaster to change their processing fees. All they need now is a fancy disclaimer on their website indicating, “WE ARE ABOUT TO CHARGE THE SHIT OUT OF YOU,” and they can continue doing so. A $1.50 per-ticket refund isn’t much when you consider the actual fees that they bludgeon you with, but I suppose it’s better than nothing. Occupy Ticketmaster!

• Ticket Fee Litigation:

Buddha Machine iPad app free for next several days for Xmas e-shopping

The wondrous time-consuming distraction for drone freaks known as the Buddha Machine is always a great stocking-stuffer idea. What better gift for the difficult-to-shop-for Brian Eno fan, who already owns every release from Editions Mego, than a handy, pocket-sized electronic loop creator?

Of course, there are also those types of people who are either environmentally conscientious, tech-obsessed, or pray to the ghost of Steve Jobs before bed each night, for whom you must provide a virtual stocking for their digital avatar to receive after descending their CGI stairway on Xmas morning (or whatever religious equivalent that the cult of Jobs celebrates). Well, patiently tolerating those two excruciating qualities of your droner pal will pay off this holiday season in the form of a free gift opportunity.

For four more days, the Buddha Machine iPad app will be available for free download! So now you can leave a secret surprise on your loved one’s tablet thingy that will bring them cheer through to the new year! Imagine the smell of freshly baked cookies, the warmth of the fireplace, the family sharing funny stories, and then awkward little Timmy, with a hoodie over his head, in the corner poking around on that damned iPad and making all kinds of dissonant noise. “Goddammit Timmy,” Dad will moan, “turn that shit off. It’s time to listen to The Carpenters’ Christmas records.”

• iTunes:
• Buddha Machine:

Dustin Wong can fly! Plus he just announced a new album, out on Thrill Jockey in February.

Is it lame to say that Dustin Wong, former Ponytail guitarist, is a musical magician? A wizard, even? Perhaps, but I’m going to roll with the analogy anyway. With only a guitar and a few effects pedals, Wong conjures alternate realities, dreamworlds where the sky is tie-dyed and the trees are shaped like crazy straws and the rivers flow with melted sequins, worlds that might resemble those of wild psychedelic hallucinations but somehow prove more orderly. Maybe the people speak in rhymes.

Last year, Wong channelled such imaginative possibilities into his Thrill Jockey debut, Infinite Love (TMT Review), and on February 21, he’ll release Dreams Say, View, Create, Shadow Leads. I hope it comes with a choose-your-own-adventure picture book.

In the meantime, check out Wong performing “Evening Curves Straight,” a track from the new album:

Dreams Say, View, Create, Shadow Leads tracklisting:

01. Ice Sheets on Feet Prints
02. Feet Prints on Flower Dreads
03. Abstract Horse Slow Motion
04. Tea Tree Leaves Retreat
05. Triangle Train Stop
06. Toe Tore Oh
07. On/In the Way
08. Pink Diamond
09. Purple Slipped Right
10. Route Through Eyebrow
11. Sprinkle Wet Toes
12. Pencil Drove Hill Moon
13. Evening Curves Straight
14. Back Towards Night
15. Space Tunnel Graffiti
16. Diagonally Talking Echo

• Dustin Wong:
• Thrill Jockey: