Slowdive officially reunite; London and Barcelona to receive initial auditory drowning

Slowdive officially reunite; London and Barcelona to receive initial auditory drowning

Blah blah blah, history is repeating itself. In three months’ time, I’ll find myself confidently droppin’ Js on my elementary school classmates and crying to the teacher about how a fiendish fourth grader unjustly claimed my best friend as his own. Oh, the forearm smudges of a left-handed-pencil-user practicing cursive — I refuse to endure such graphite-fueled cruelty again! Also during the early 90s: that whole (relatively short-lived, but sweet) shoegaze thing, of which arguably the two most principal emissaries, My Bloody Valentine and now, Slowdive, have reunited roughly 20 years later for some fun-time sneaker perusal. Assuredly, human eye-contact remains overrated.

Forgive the perception of unoriginality. Even if MBV did recently enamor the masses with an extensive global tour, and ultimately, the surprisingly atemporal — it sounded like they’d hardly skipped a beat — m b v (TMT Review), Slowdive are their own, equally worthwhile entity, undeserving of belaboring associations. The band’s collective venture into social networking, with four of the group’s members (Christian Savill, Rachel Goswell, Nick Chaplin, and Simon Scott) doing the initial following, marked the first hint. This week, they publicly confirmed performances at Primavera Sound 2014 in Barcelona, and the Village Underground in London on May 19, with additional shows explicitly said to be announced in the near future. Setlist musings by Goswell over at The Quietus indicate “all the old favourites and a couple of different ones. We’re going for the epic.”

Meanwhile, self-proclamations that Slowdive are back would suggest even more. The first rehearsal after officially reuniting was a “fun” and mostly intuitive experience, Neil Halstead remarked; we’ll see if the “initial impetus” leads to full-length fruition.

• Slowdive:

Heavy rockers The Shrine emerge from the primordial sludge with a new LP for Tee Pee Records

Somewhere in Venice Beach, CA, is a garage that time forgot. A garage filled with ratty brown couches, cheap bear, your long-haired older brother circa 1979, and some heavy riffs. Now imagine… nuclear slime!!! SEEPING INTO THE GARAGE!!! And then from the depths of a slime — in a plot line not dissimilar to the conception of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and like, human evolution in general — emerged The Shrine. The power trio of Josh Landau (guitar/vocals), Courtland Murphy (bass) and Jeff Murray (drums) have toured with Red Fang, Earthless, Dinosaur Jr., Graveyard, and Black Flag’s Chuck Dukowski, who also produced the band’s early output.

Now The Shrine are back with a new album for Teepee Records, Bless Off, which drops March 11. This ish was recorded on reel-to-reel tape with old school gear, and features “The Duke,” a track with lyrics originally written by friend-of-the-band Dukowski in 1983 for Black Flag. The album art includes the band’s favorite animal, the wolf, because DUH all bands like wolves, and is a tribute to the iconography of Dogtown Skateboards and show flyer artist Ric Clayton (Suicidal Tendencies.)

Bless Off tracklisting:

01. Destroyers
02. Worship
03. Tripping Corpse
04. The Duke
05. Nothing Forever
06. Bless Off
07. On the Grind
08. No Penalty
09. Spit in My Life
10. Napalm
11. Hellride

• The Shrine:
• Tee Pee:

Neil Young announces new album A Letter Home; fans can’t wait to hear it in glorious, convenient MP3 format

Okay, here it is, folks. Neil Young doesn’t mince words; so neither will I. Let’s get you your news!

Point 1: Some sort of music industry awards ceremony — wherein people who work in the music industry sit around and pat themselves on the back for continuing to sally-forth as an industry — seems to have gone down over the weekend. And, according to Consequence of Sound, Young received something called the President’s Merit Award at something else called the “Producers and Engineers Wing’s annual Grammy party.”

Point 2: While he was at that thing, he seems to have confirmed that he’ll be releasing his newest album, entitled A Letter Home, in March of this year. Perhaps significantly, in a recent interview with Rolling Stone, Young called the making of this album “one of the lowest-tech experiences I’ve ever had,” and if you’re a fan of his album Tonight’s the Night, that’s kinda saying something.

Point 3: Some people seem to think that Jack White and/or Third Man Records is involved in this record and have been speculating that perhaps the album is an album of duet cover songs, but Young’s Facebook page (yup, he’s got one of those) has indicated that that information is “false.” But that doesn’t necessarily mean that White wasn’t involved in some capacity, now, does it? I mean, maybe White tuned his guitars for him? Or maybe Neil Young used him as a stool to sit on while he was tracking parts? That’d be cool, wouldn’t it?!? Or would it? I don’t even know. Either way, just sit tight. Some Neil Young shit is coming out soon, and it might sound gnarly.

• Neil Young:

Blackest Ever Black release Weekend’s The ‘81 Demos on vinyl (ex-Young Marble Giants, not naughty-sex-man)

Another band named Weekend! Just what the world needed! But wait — this is the first Weekend, the trio of Alison Statton, Spike Williams, and Simon Booth, an ex-Young Marble Giants project that swooned its way through the sad post-punk hearts of 1981-1983. And the good people over at Blackest Ever Black are set to release the band’s The ‘81 Demos as a 12-inch. Doing the Lord’s Work they are, surely.

Out March 3, the Demos include the first versions of “Drumbeat” (a.k.a. “Drumbeat for Baby”), “Red Planes,” “Nostalgia,” and “Summerdays,” all of which appeared on Weekend’s 1982 Rough Trade release La Varieté, but which are even more beautiful and violintacular here. Vinyl Japan released this thing as a CD back in 1995, and the tracks were included as bonus material on the recent Cherry Red CD reissue of the band’s debut full-length, but this limited 12-inch marks the first time it’s been available on sweet sweet vinyl. Check out the gorgeous “Red Planes” here:

The ‘81 Demos tracklisting:

01. Drumbeat
02. Red Planes
03. Nostalgia
04. Summerdays Instrumental

• Blackest Ever Black:

RIP: Arthur Doyle, legendary “free jazz soul” artist

It is with a heavy heart that we confirm the passing of Arthur Doyle, a performer of what he called “free jazz soul.” He died on January 25. We’ll be posting an essay on him next week, so for now, we’ll just leave you with some quotes and a few videos: one solo, one with drummer Sunny Murray, and one of a track off his 1978 debut, Alabama Feeling.

“You can’t separate the singing from the saxophone. You can’t separate the flute from the saxophone. You can’t separate none of it from the saxophone. It all revolves around one instrument, and that is Me, Myself.”

“I love being underground, man.”

“When I play in front of an audience I try to communicate all the things that happen to me in this life, the life before that, and the life after that.”

• Arthur Doyle:

Cloud Nothings to release new album Here and Nowhere Else, share new single on the internet (and nowhere else)

Hey! You didn’t forget about the indie rock band Cloud Nothings already, did you? And so soon after their 2012 release Attack on Memory made us all fall in love with Pixies and Pinkerton-emo all over again? Damn. How quickly we forget! Oh man, if only main man Dylan Baldi would put out another record so that you could remember his band again! Alas and alack!

Oh wait. He totally IS. It’s called Here And Nowhere Else. Say, do you want to hear him talk about it? Sweet! Me too!

For starters, it’s apparently a little less sad than the last one. “I was feeling pretty good about everything so I just made stuff that made me happy,” Baldi says. “I had nothing to be angry about really so the approach was more positive and less ‘fuckeverything.’ I just sat down and played until I found something that I like, because I was finally in a position to do that.” Cool! I feel less angry now than I did in 2012 too! I blame Occupy Wall Street. Anyway, so yeah, Baldi wrote a lot of these songs on the road and is even “pretty sure every song was written in a different country.” Then he met up with hot-shit producer John Congleton at Water Music in Hoboken, New Jersey (which, unfortunately, is only in one boring country) to record it all.

Oh wait, did you still want to hear more quotes about the sound from Baldi? Sure! Let’s do it: “It’s more subtle,” he says. “It’s not just an in-your-face rock record. There’s more going on.” You want some more? BAM: “You can listen to a song 20 times and still hear different little things in there that you didn’t notice before. Every time I listen I notice something that I didn’t even realize we did.” Satisfied? Well, I hope not, because the album will hit us like a wave of mutilation on April 1 via Carpark/Mom+Pop and is available for pre-order as of today on some place called In the meantime, you can stream the first single, “I’m Not Part of Me,” below and maybe make up your own quotes about what it sounds like and share them with your friends on Facebook and Twitter! Yeah! Do that!

Here and Nowhere Else tracklisting:

01. Now Hear In
02. Quieter Today
03. Psychic Trauma
04. Just See Fear
05. Giving into Seeing
06. No Thoughts
07. Pattern Walks
08. I’m Not Part of Me

• Cloud Nothings:
• Carpark: