Talib Kweli has a new LP due out in April; also, don’t expect the second Black Star album this year

Talib Kweli has a new LP due out in April; also, don't expect the second Black Star album this year http://www.tinymixtapes.com/sites/default/files/1301/news-13-01-talib-kweli.jpg

In the time honored hip-hop tradition of vaporware albums, Talib Kweli has confirmed in Rolling Stone that the follow up to Black Star’s landmark 1998 album Mos Def & Talib Kweli Are Black Star won’t be out this year.

The long-teased-about, oft-delayed album isn’t on the back burner due to animosity between Kweli and Yasiin Bey (the dude who used to go by Mos Def) but commitments to other projects, with Kweli adding “I would love to get back into it whenever he’s ready.”

The duo is still considering making the (hopefully) forthcoming record themed around Aretha Franklin, inspired by a late-night listening session in 2011, the same late-night collaboration that led to “Fix Up.”

With that unsurprising news out of the way, Talib Kweli has a new solo album coming up. Prisoner of Conscious, available April 23, has been in the works for quite a while, apparently since before Kweli even began production on 2011’s Gutter Rainbows (TMT Review). Kweli is putting the album out on his own Blacksmith/Javotti Media label. Look for guest spots from Kendrick Lamar, Busta Rhymes, Nelly, and probably some others.

Tourdates:

01.19.13 - Washington, DC - Little Miss Whiskey’s Golden Dollar (DJ set)
01.20.13 - New York, NY - S.O.B.S.
01.31.13 - New York, NY - IFC Center (movie screening and discussion)
02.09.13 - Detroit, MI - The Fillmore (Dilla Day)
02.22.13 - Lawrence, KS - The Granada
02.26.13 - Cambridge, MA - The Middle East
02.27.13 - Providence, RI - Fete

• Talib Kweli: http://www.talibkweli.com

The Men announce new album, call it New Moon, offer new track, unveil new tourdates, generate new press coverage

The Legend of The Men

Back in the dark ages of 2012, things were looking dire for Brooklyn rock dudes The Men. Mighty once, they had lost their way and fallen on hard times. They put out their third album last year, no one really wrote about it, and they probably played a few shows here and there at a handful of university student union halls. A few stalwart fans probably came out, but generally, I don’t think anyone would have been surprised if the band sullenly slinked away into annoying solo-project land in 2013. From this reporter’s iron-clad point of view, it was looking very bleak indeed.

BUT LO! Just when things looked their bleakest, A HUGE, multi-bazillion-dollar magazine called Tiny Mix Tapes zoomed in from on high and saw fit to bestow that 2012 album the tremendous accolade of being its 36th favorite album of the year! Literally overnight, everything changed for The Men, and they found themselves suddenly equipped with the opportunity to make a fourth album for the Sacred Bones label in 2013. Thus it has come to pass that The Men proudly present New Moon, an intensely personal and wholly immersive triumph of underdog grit and TMT facilitation. According to the press release, it was recorded in a converted “studio home” that the band constructed in the upstate New York village of Big Indian and once again features guitarists Nick Chiericozzi and Mark Perro and drummer Rich Samis (all fresh from the last record), as well as friend and producer Ben Greenberg on full-time bass duties and Kevin Faulkner “dreaming aloud on lap steel” (and let me hereby be the first to pretend that dreaming aloud on a lap steel doesn’t sound terrible).

Speaking of off-beat, “keepin’ it fresh for album #4” instrumentation choices, it seems like we can expect such affectations as “piano, mandolin, harmonica, four-part vocal harmonies and even no-input harsh noise.” And yes, in case you were wondering, “New Moon is simultaneously an expansion of palette and a contraction of focus. It is a love letter devoted in bowed humility to the grand continuum, exposing the hoax of the great divide.” Hmm. I’m starting to regret giving TMT full credit for this album’s existence all of a sudden… oh well. Either way, the first single, “Electric,” will be out on 7-inch vinyl on January 22. Check it out below (as well as a bunch of 2013 tourdates), and do not, I repeat, DO NOT, write us any hate mail if you don’t like it. Love mail if you DO like it is fine.

New Moon tracklisting:

01. Open the Door
02. Half Angel Half Light
03. Without a Face
04. The Seeds
05. I Saw Her Face
06. High and Lonesome
07. The Brass
08. Electric
09. I See No One
10. Birdsong
11. Freaky
12. Supermoon

Tourdates:

01.28.13 - Auckland, New Zealand - Silo Park
01.30.13 - Sydney, Australia - Goodgod Small Club *
01-31.13 - Wollongong, Australia - Beaches Thirroul *
02.01.13 - Brisbane, Australia - Laneway Festival
02.02.13 - Sydney, Australia - Laneway Festival
02.03.13 - Melbourne, Australia - Laneway Festival
02.06.13 - Melbourne, Australia - Northcote Social Club
02.08.13 - Adelaide, Australia - Laneway Festival
02.09.13 - Perth, Australia - Laneway Festival
03.07.13 - New York, NY - Bowery Ballroom
03.09.13 - Los Angeles, CA - Troubadour
03.14.13 - Paris, France - Point FMR
03.15.13 - Kortrijk, Belgium - De Kreun
03.16.13 - Bruxelles, Belgium - Magasin 4
03.17.13 - Amsterdam, Netherlands - Paradiso
03.18.13 - London, UK - Rough Trade
03.19.13 - London, UK - Garage
03.20.13 - Nijmigen, Netherlands - Merlyn
03.21.13 - Copenhagen, Denmark - Stengade
03.22.13 - Berlin, Germany - Festaal
03.23.13 - Prague, Czech Republic - 007 Club
03.24.13 - Vienna, Austria - Arena
03.25.13 - Budapest, Hungary - Gozsdu Mano Klub
03.26.13 - Ljubljana, Slovenia - Menza
03.27.13 - Zagreb, Croatia - Club Mocvara
03.28.13 - Belgrade, Serbia - Grad Beograd
03.29.13 - Skopje, Macedonia - Menza Pro Koritu
03.30.13 - Tessaloniki, Greece - 8 Ball Club
03.31.13 - Athens, Greece - AN Club
05.31.13 - Austin, TX - Chaos in Tejas
06.01.13 - Austin, TX - Chaos in Tejas

* Royal Headache

• The Men: http://wearethemen.blogspot.com
• Sacred Bones: http://www.sacredbonesrecords.com

Album sales for 2012 show a moderate decline; industry execs petition to change the word “moderate” to mean “apocalyptically severe”

In contrast with 2011, when overall album sales in the US miraculously increased by 1.4% over the previous year (in part, courtesy of a green-eyed British idol), Nielsen SoundScan reports that albums sales for 2012 fell by 4.4%, from 331 million to 316 million units. Time to pack it in. We’re back to the downward trend that began in 2004, and major record labels can continue cynically (and now, justifiably) prophesying the death of the music industry, right?

Well, not so fast. There are a couple of statistics that suggest more of a settling around a new normal than a resumption of industry hemorrhaging. First: the 4.4% decrease in 2012 is mild, relative to the near double-digit losses that were experienced between 2006 and 2010. Album sales in 2007 fell by 9.5%, for instance. Second: digital sales of individual songs grew by 5.1% last year, which is slower than in previous years, but again, that points to a new normal. Digital sales of individual tracks were growing by around 30-40% at the same time that physical album sales were decreasing markedly, so what does it say if both aren’t moving much in either direction? Someone let me know if I’m missing a variable here. The music industry lives on, it appears…

Within the realm of overall album sales, CDs continued their reign as the increasingly uncool music medium — according to Billboard, sales decreased by 13.5% to 193.4 million units. Meanwhile, sales of vinyl records increased by 17.7% to 4.55 million units, and the numbers for digital albums grew as well, by 14.1%, improving its share of overall album sales to 37%.

To another year of fiscally inadvisable music purchases!

• Nielsen SoundScan: http://www.nielsen.com/us/en/links/Soundscan-BDS.html

With nowhere to find free streaming music online, turntable.fm launches Piki

Do you like Pandora, but hate the fact that it chooses music for you using a lame-o algorithm? Well, you’re in luck! Hypebot tells us that the friendly people who brought you Turntable.fm, the social set list site where you can take turns playing DJ with your friends, are now hocking a brand-new, state-of-the-art social media music listening experience (minus the math) called Piki. It’s not an encyclopedia of Pokemon characters, but rather a new way to listen to streaming music online that draws heavily from the Pandora model, shifting the focus to social-driven song selection (yay!) instead of robot mind control (boo!) or whatever it is they use over at Pan-snore-a.

I imagine most people use Pandora because their friends have shit taste in music and they need a computer to help them find new tunes, but if you want to let the people you’ve collected online to be in charge of what song comes piping into your ear holes next, then by all means sign up to be a beta tester here. An accompanying mobile app (for iPhones) is said to be on the horizon.

It’s yet to be seen if it’s a good idea to go into this market, what with Apple’s rumored upcoming entrance, but as a listener, it’s always good to have options.

• Piki: https://piki.fm

Mouse on Mars tour North America, but they’ve missed the chance to play in space

Even though I don’t really understand the science of space or the math of space or anything like that, I still like reading about space. And I just read about a meteorite from Mars that’s 10 times as old as any other one that’s been found and contains a pretty decent amount of water, which apparently brings up the possibility of life on Mars 2.1 billion years ago.

So here’s my question for Mouse on Mars: shouldn’t you guys be touring the red planet instead of North America? Just to check things out? Maybe look for fossils or alien dinosaur skeletons? Bring a few copies of your 2012 albums, Parastrophics (TMT Review) and WOW so you can see how the Martians dig them? At the very least, how about if you guys beam up the video for “Polaroyced”? And maybe the one for “They Know Your Name” too? I’m sure whoever’s hanging out on Mars could be in the mood for something electronic.

Dates:

02.15.13 - San Diego, CA - The Soda Bar
02.16.13 - Los Angeles, CA - The El Rey
02.17.13 - San Francisco, CA - The Independent
02.19.13 - Portland, OR - Doug Fir
02.20.13 - Seattle, WA - Neumo
02.22.13 - Salt Lake City, UT - The Urban Lounge
02.23.13 - Denver, CO - Summit
02.25.13 - Minneapolis, MN - 7th Street Entry
02.26.13 - Chicago, IL - The Mayne Stage
02.27.13 - Detroit, MI - The Pike Room
03.01.13 - Montreal, QC - Il Motore
03.02.13 - Boston, MA - Great Scott
03.03.13 - New York, NY - Santos Party House
03.04.13 - Philadelphia, PA - Johnny Brenda’s
03.05.13 - Washington, DC - U Street Music Hall

• Mouse on Mars: http://www.mouseonmars.com
• Monkeytown: http://www.monkeytownrecords.com

Iannis Xenakis to have vintage works collected on new Recollection GRM LP

Did you guys get what you wanted for Xmas? I sure as fuck didn’t. I got some sort of fancy cork. But here’s your chance to make it up to me, mom. You see, just in time for my birthday, Greek experimental composer Iannis Xenakis is to have some of his vintage works collected by Editions Mego.

According to FACT, “GRM Works 1957-1962 collects material recorded during the Greek composer and architect’s stint with Pierre Schaeffer’s highly influential Groupe de Recherches Musicales, a mid 20th century lodestone for electro-acousic composers and avant-garde musical operators.” This record, titled GRM Works 1957-1962 will be released via Mego’s Recollection GRM archive sub-label, active since early last year.

You don’t even have to wrap it. You can just mail it to me.

GRM Works 1957-1962 tracklisting:

01. Concret PH
02. Orient-Occident
03. Diamorphoses
04. Bohor

• Iannis Xenakis: http://www.iannis-xenakis.org
• Recollection GRM: http://editionsmego.com/releases/recollection-grm

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