Shugo Tokumaru to Take Concept of “European Tour” to NEXT LEVEL

Everyone's favorite European history buff will be returning this fall with a European tour. How perfect, right? Shugo Tokumaru will retrace Napoleon Bonaparte's exact steps across the continent, complete with bloody military defeat at Waterloo and exile on the isle of Elba when the tour is over. Furthermore, Shugo will be wearing 19th-century French military uniforms for every show, crossing treacherous terrain from gig to gig on a white horse. To top it all off, he is having reconstructive surgery to shorten himself to 5'2", the rumored height of the French king. Best of luck Shugo, and stay the hell away from Russia!

THIS JUST IN: The surgery, I'm afraid, has gone terribly, terribly wrong. Instead of Napoleon Bonaparte, the surgeon made him look exactly like... oh, Jesus Christ.... Napoleon Dynamite. No worries, this could be fun. Haha, hey Shugo, I caught you a delicious bass... oh, too soon? That was insensitive, and I apologize.

Well, whichever Napoleon he looks like, I'm sure his expansive pop — especially the stuff he plays from his last album, L.S.T. — will still be top notch:

10.19.06 - Tarragona, Spain - Scumm
10.20.06 - Castellon, Spain - Teatre Conino Gurillo
10.21.06 - Barcelona, Spain - Niu
10.24.06 - Evreux, France - L'abordage
10.25.06 - St. Brieuc, France - La Passerelle
10.26.06 - Boulognes Billancourt, France - Festival BBMiX
10.27.06 - Dijon, France - Festival Novosonic
10.28.06 - Nantes, France - Le Lieu Unique
10.29.06 - Bordeaux, France - L'INCA
11.01.06 - Malmo, Sweden - Inkonst
11.02.06 - Stockholm, Sweden - Debaser
11.03.06 - Gothenborg, Sweden - Pustervik
11.04.06 - Copenhagen, Denmark - Rust
11.07.06 - Paris, France - Studio de l'hermitage

Predictable News Title from Us? Never! Chin Up Chin Up… Tour Album Tour Album (Thanks for the lame idea, bitch-ass internet hacks!)

Art-rockPost-rockArt-rockPost-rockArt-rockArt-Art-rockPost-Poster-Artist-rock!!! You love it, and we've got it! Or you think you love it. And we might have it. More often than not, bands described in these seemingly endorsing terms seem to be as common and dry as snot on a urinal wall. (Sorry for the visual ladies, but it's true.) As with any insensitive media construct, you always have to sort the wheat from the shafting. Those already hit by the charms of Chicago's Chin Up Chin Up don't need anyone to tell them that there's something special about the band, that they have overcome and paid tribute to great loss in grand style and have made and will make many musics that divorce them from the huge blobs of barf in post-art-rock-whatevs wonderland.

Those who haven't had the pleasure yet soon will, as CUCU will release a new album and embark on a tour to spread their general loveliness and twitchy energy nationwide. When the greenhorns finally hear the sound, involuntary hands will reach upwards to gently stroke their weird beards, and with Tourette's-like yelps will confirm that "Yes! Yes, this is quite good!" About the band name and predilection for strange-sounding album titles? Well, they're not completely messed or disturbing, but certainly fit between a new girlfriend requesting "Do the Bartman" at a bar and my mom calling me to announce, "Guess what son? I'm pregnant!" on the perplex-o-scale.

Like the band's We Should Have Never Lived Like We Were Skyscrapers, the new album has a whippit-indebted title too. This Harness Can't Ride Anything was recorded by hometown producer/village bicycle Brian Deck at his Engine Studios and will be out October 10 on Suicide Squeeze. Village bicycle? Why, because everyone rides him? As a producer? What? I dunno what the hell I'm talking about. Regardless, here's the tour which includes lots of shows with Oxford Collapse, Cursive, and The Thermals and none with Farty McGillicuddy and the Tittie-twister Sisters:

10.06.06 - Pittsburgh, PA - Brillobox
10.07.06 - Brooklyn, NY - Grasslands *
10.08.06 - New Haven, CT - Bar Night Club *
10.09.06 - New Britain, CT - Semesters *
10.10.06 - Buffalo, NY - Mohawk Place *
10.11.06 - Cleveland, OH - The Spot at Case Western *
10.12.06 - Urbana, IL - Courtyard Cafe *
10.13.06 - Chicago, IL - Empty Bottle +
10.14.06 - Omaha, NE - O'Leavers
10.15.06 - Denver, CO - Ogden Theatre #
10.16.06 - Colorado Springs, CO - The Black Sheep
10.17.06 - Salt Lake City, UT - In the Venue #
10.18.06 - Boise, ID - The Venue #
10.19.06 - Walla Walla, WA - Whitman College Coffeehouse
10.20.06 - Seattle, WA - Neumos #
10.21.06 - Portland, OR - Roseland Theatre #
10.23.06 - San Francisco, CA - The Fillmore #
10.24.06 - Los Angeles, CA - Safari Sams
10.26.06 - Denton, TX - Rubbergloves *
10.27.06 - Austin, TX - Emos Lounge *
10.28.06 - Baton Rouge, LA - Spanish Moon *
10.29.06 - Atlanta, GA - The Earl $
10.30.06 - Mt. Pleasant, SC - The Village Tavern *
10.31.06 - Wilmington, NC - The Soapbox Laundrolounge *
11.01.06 - Washington, DC - Black Cat *
11.03.06 - New York, NY - Knitting Factory ^
11.05.06 - Philadelphia, PA - Johnny Brenda's %
11.06.06 - Covington, KY - Madhatters
12.02.06 - Notre Dame, IN - Legends of Notre Dame

* w/ Oxford Collapse
+ w/ Oxford Collapse and Make Believe
# w/ Cursive and The Thermals
$ w/ The Album Leaf and Oxford Collapse
^ CMJ Music Marathon Extravaganza To the Max! Woohoo!
% w/ Irving

This keyboard can't type anything, except these songs:

1. This Harness Can't Ride Anything
2. Water Planes in Snow
3. We've Got to Keep Running
4. Islands Sink
5. Mansioned
6. I Need a Friend With a Boat
7. Blankets Like Beaver
8. Landlocked Lifeguards
9. Stolen Mountains
10. Trophies for Hire

Wooden Wand, Don’t Hurt ‘Em (There, I Told You I Could Write the Most Irrational Title for a Wooden Wand News Story Ever)

Sometimes speculation is all we have. For example, we know little about the man known as Wooden Wand. We do know that he releases just about everything he puts on tape under a bunch of shifting stage names with a load of helping henchmen and women. We can listen to his songs that head trip a variety of philosophical and political persuasions and straddle traditional and non-so-traditional sounds. But the rest of the story is lost in obscurely pieced-together background bios full of strange road stories and faux-mysticism. What do we really know about the prolific and reflective Wooden Wand? Does he put his pants on just like the rest of us? Does he believe in pants? Does he strictly wear low-rise jodhpurs or chaps? We need our hard facts!

Now, I normally wouldn't merely reprint press release info, but parts of a recent WW fac-sheet outlining "10 Misconceptions and Things You Didn't Know About Wooden Wand" bare repeating (and it fleshes out my bone-thin news story, right eds?). Among the revelations are the facts that he prefers Tennessee to New York, Steely Dan to Pink Floyd, and tequila to bourbon (at least at this point in his life). There are also the following:

07. He is an avid gun enthusiast, and and is a life member of both the National Rifle Association and Gun Owners of America.*
04. His extended family includes late actor Vincent Gardenia, Chicago Cubs general manager (and former Met) Ed Lynch, "Desperate Housewives"' Andrea Bowen, and Type-O Negative's Peter Steele.**
01. Scott Ian of Anthrax once lectured a 12-year-old Wand that he was "too young to be smoking joints." He was right (They totally got high together anyway).***

* had us at "avid gun enthusiast."

** Oh yeah, yet another case of a relative to Tinseltown, television and Triple-A baseball royalty trying his hand at music (sorry Cubs fans, I couldn't resist... let's go Dodgers, clap, clap, clap-clap-clap...war-ning track po-wer, clap, clap, clap-clap-clap!!!).

*** The same thing happened to me, but it was "generic guitarist" from Canadian 8Ts metal band Exciter, and it was huffing solvent (we totally got brain damaged together anyway, but just a little).

Figuring out what makes our boy Wooden Wand tick is tougher than a 20x20x20 Rubik's Cube. Listening is only a little less taxing, but it's a whole lot more fun. One can only imagine what a live Wooden Wand show would be like; I won't have the pleasure because the bastard isn't playing anywhere near me! So unless I finally book that long-overdue fantasy trip to Eugene, Oregon, I will have to rely on word of mouth reports which will probably muddy the Wooden Wand myth even more. The tour includes some shows with Skygreen Leopards, many with Wand's wife (the "Voice" of The Vanishing Voice, Satya Sai), and a number with recent collaborators the Sky High Band (featuring members of both Skygreen Leopards and The Vanishing Voice, and Davenport). Now is the time to sing ye, from the wilds, from the hillsides, and from your heart because the tour has already started! And if I had sent this story in last week like I was supposed to, you could have gone to those first few dates crossed off below.

10.01.06 - New York, NY - Glassland Gallery *
10.02.06 - Cleveland, OH - The Church *
10.03.06 - Chicago, IL - Empty Bottle *

10.04.06 - Des Moines, IA - Vaudeville Mews *
10.05.06 - Denver, CO - Hi-Dive *
10.06.06 - Salt Lake City, UT - The Broken Record *
10.12.06 - Oakland, CA - 21Grand
10.13.06 - Sacramento, CA - Fools Foundation #$
10.14.06 - Davis, CA - Delta of Venus #$
10.15.06 - San Francisco, CA - Hemlock Tavern #$
10.16.06 - Eugene, OR - Cozmic Pizza #$
10.17.06 - Portland, OR - Someday Lounge #$
10.18.06 - Olympia, WA - 1320 5th Ave SW (early show)
10.18.06 - Seattle, WA - Gallery 1412 #$
10.19.06 - Nevada City, NV - National Hotel
10.20.06 - Big Sur, CA - Fernwood Lodge #$
10.21.06 - Los Angeles, CA - Palace Theatre %
10.22.06 - Phoenix, AZ - Modified Arts ^
10.23.06 - Albuquerque, NM - Atomic Cantina
10.25.06 - Austin, TX - Red's Scoot Inn ^
10.26.06 - Houston, TX - The Proletariat ^
10.27.06 - New Orleans, LA - Eldon's Place
10.28.06 - Nashville, TN - Ruby Green
10.29.06 - Knoxville, TN - The Pilot Light ^
10.30.06 - Chapel Hill, NC - Night Light ^
10.31.06 - Washington, DC - Rock and Roll Hotel ^
11.01.06 - Baltimore, MD - Golden West ^
11.02.06 - Philadelphia, PA - TriTone ^
11.03.06 - New York, NY - Mo Pitkins (CMJ Fanatic Promotion Acoustic Afternoon)
11.04.06 - Brooklyn, NY - Uncle Paulie's (Free Agency Showcase)
11.08.06 - New York, NY - Knitting Factory *
11.09.06 - Purchase, NY - Purchase College *
11.10.06 - Harrisonburg, VA - James Madision University *
11.11.06 - Roanoke, VA - Static house
12.10.06 - Somerset, England - ATP The Nightmare Before Christmas

* w/ Satya Sai
# West Coast Revue (featuring members of Sky High Band, the Vanishing Voice, and Skygreen Leopards
$ w/ Skygreen Leopards
% solo show at Arthur Nights
^ w/ Sky High Band

RIAA Forced To Drink Coke With LimeWire, Told To Like It

LimeWire, the popular peer-to-peer network, recently filed an antitrust lawsuit against the massively unpopular RIAA. Did that just raise your eyebrows? No? Well, read the text from LimeWire's counterclaim:

goal was simple: to destroy any online music distribution service they did not own or control, or force such services to do business with them on exclusive and/or other anticompetitive terms so as to limit and ultimately control the distribution and pricing of digital music, all to the detriment of consumers. (Counterclaim, paragraph 26, page 18)... This case is but one part of a much larger modern conspiracy to destroy all innovation that content owners cannot control and that disrupts their historical business models.(Counterclaim, paragraph 28, page 18)
The case is Arista v. LimeWire, by the way, and this is a countersuit to the ongoing copyright infringement and blah blah blah. LimeWire, whether you agree with what they do or not, makes an argument against the RIAA that is too accurate to deny. Go LimeWire, stick it to suits! But wait, why do they bother? Why are they going to the trouble of filing an antitrust lawsuit over the RIAA, the Dr. Claw of the music world? Do they feel an honest and civic duty to stand up for the rights of consumers and keep the labels in check? Hmm... let it fester.

The RIAA alleges that LimeWire is profiting from illegal downloading. Would that be motive for trying to keep the shop open? Did LimeWire's head honchos kill their wives in order to cash in on the life insurance? I don't know. If its motives are less than wholesome, I'm going to stick with the devil I know. LimeWire is doing us all a favor by elucidating an argument that needs to be discussed. Technology is angering the curmudgeon that is the RIAA because it does "disrupt their historical business models."

Oh xenophobic RIAA, you're adorable, like an old grandfather yelling racial slurs because that's how it always was. Times have changed, and while you embrace the money of the iPod and the MP3, you better accept the consequences that come with it. Maybe the RIAA will make a good point, but wait, no, I think their lawsuits against old women and the deceased speak for themselves.

Jeepers! Matador Releases (Gosh and Golly!) Expanded Wowee Zowee! Shucky Darn!

Since David Berman’s been all kinds of awesome with the Silver Jews lately, you gotta wonder what the fuck Stephen Malkmus is doing. Staring at a wall? Wondering if he’s to blame for boys in girls’ pants? Sometimes an indie rock icon gets depressed.

Enter Matador Records, accompanied by various trumpets and patchy facial hair... issuing a proclamation from an unnecessarily long piece of parchment: On November 6, there shalt be a third installment in the biannual Pavement deluxe reissue series. I dub thee, sir: Wowee Zowee: Sordid Sentinels Edition!

Of course, this “series” can only last as long as the Pavement catalog... and Matador still lists ’em on the “Active Roster”... !!! Wink, nudge?

Either way, loyal minions shall be graced with a buttload of liner notes, live tracks, outtakes, etceteree, etcetera. Oh, we ain’t kidding.

Tracklist... check it.

Disc 1:

1. We Dance
2. Rattled By The Rush
3. Black Out
4. Brinx Job
5. Grounded
6. Serpentine Pad
7. Motion Suggests Itself
8. Father To A Sister Of Thought
9. Extradition
10. Best Friend's Arm
11. Grave Architecture
12. AT & T
13. Flux = Rad
14. Fight This Generation
15. Kennel District
16. Pueblo
17. Half A Canyon
18. Western Homes
19. Sordid [previously unreleased Wowee Zowee session outtake]
20. Brink Of The Clouds [Rattled By La Rush b-side]
21. False Skorpion [Rattled By La Rush b-side]
22. Easily Fooled [Rattled By La Rush b-side]
23. Kris Kraft [Father To A Sister Of Thought b-side]
24. Mussle Rock [Father To A Sister Of Thought b-side]
25. Give It A Day [Pacific Trim EP]
26. Gangsters & Pranksters [Pacific Trim EP]
27. Saganaw [Pacific Trim EP]
28. I Love Perth [Pacific Trim EP]
29. Sentinel [previously unreleased Wowee Zowee session outtake]

Disc 2:

1. Sensitive Euro Man [I Shot Andy Warhol soundtrack]
2. Stray Fire [previously unreleased Wowee Zowee session outtake]
3. Fight This Generation [recorded March 3, 1994 at Hilversum, Holland]
4. Easily Fooled [recorded March 3, 1994 at Hilversum, Holland]
5. Soul Food [Wowee Zowee jam session w/Doug Easley on piano]
6. It's A Hectic World [from Homage To Descendents tribute album]
7. Kris Kraft [BBC in-studio; Steve Lamacq Evening Session, March 15, 1995]
8. Golden Boys/Serpentine Pad [BBC in-studio; Steve Lamacq Evening Session, March 15, 1995]
9. Painted Soldiers [BBC in-studio; Steve Lamacq Evening Session, March 15, 1995]
10. I Love Perth [BBC in-studio; Steve Lamacq Evening Session, March 15, 1995]
11. Dancing With The Elders [from Medusa Cyclone/Pavement split 7"]
12. Half A Canyon [live; Wireless JJJ Radio, Australia, July 7, 1994]
13. Best Friend's Arm [live; Wireless JJJ Radio, Australia, July 7, 1994]
14. Brink Of The Clouds/Candylad [live; Wireless JJJ Radio, Australia, July 7, 1994]
15. Unfair [live; Wireless JJJ Radio, Australia, July 7, 1994]
16. Eaily Fooled [live; Wireless JJJ Radio, Australia, July 7, 1994]
17. Heaven Is A Truck [live; Wireless JJJ Radio, Australia, July 7, 1994]
18. Box Elder [live; Wireless JJJ Radio, Australia, July 7, 1994]
19. No More Kings [from Schoolhouse Rock! Rocks comp]
20. Painted Soldiers [from Kids In The Hall In Brain Candy soundtrack]
21. We Dance (alternate mix) [previously unreleased Wowee Zowee session outtake]

Pernice Brothers Return This Week, Outline Brief Tour of States

With full facial hair, Joe Pernice looks alot like Walt Whitman, or Santa Claus. The first example is a fitting tribute considering that Pernice has become one of the more respected elder statesman of singer/songwriter fare. We may all still be waiting impatiently for the next Chappaquiddick Skyline LP, but Pernice is apparently happier recording and releasing Pernice Brothers records, and God bless him for it.

The band released Live A Little (Ashmont) this week, and it's another stellar offer by a band that has yet to mistep, going all the way back to 1998's delightful Overcome By Happiness (Sub Pop). Those lucky enough to pre-order the CD directly from Joe (Ashmont Records) were treated to an extra bonus disc loaded with demos and outtakes, or as referred to at the band's HQ, "the bonus/demo outtakes thingie." The CD boasted songs Pernice recorded at home and later re-worked or "edited the living shit out of."

The Brothers Pernice have a short tour planned to coincide with the LP's release, set to begin November 7.

Where Would I Be If I Was A Screwdriver?:

11.07.06 - Detroit, MI - Lager House *
11.09.06 - Chicago, IL - Schubas *
11.10.06 - Madison, WI - High Noon Saloon *
11.16.06 - Seattle, WA - Tractor Tavern *
11.17.06 - Portland, OR - Doug Fir Lounge *
11.21.06 - San Francisco, CA - Cafe du Nord *
11.22.06 - Los Angeles, CA - Spaceland *
12.06.06 - Washington, DC - Black Cat *

* w/ Elvis Perkins

Live A Little tracklist:

1. Automaton
2. Somerville
3. Cruelty To Animals
4. Zero Refills
5. Microscopic View
6. How Can I Compare
7. B.S. Johnson
8. PCH One
9. Conscience Clean (I Went To Spain)
10. Lightheaded
11. High As A Kite
12. Grudge Fuck