Ted Leo Announces Brutal New LP, Considers Ripping A Swine In Half To Celebrate, Rips Soy-Based Swine Substitute In Half Instead

Ted Leo, patron saint of hooky guitar-pop, has the worst luck with labels. The guy released three LPs on legendary pop-punk label Lookout Records, then the label got in all kinds of legal trouble. Jumping over to legendary Chicago punk label Touch and Go probably seemed like a stable move, until that label went belly up. Jeez! Thankfully, the man has once again found himself in the employ of a legendary label, that being Matador this time around. Which is great and all, but, um, please don’t kill Matador, Ted.

Even if Leo does turn out to be the record label reaper the third time around, he’ll at least be able to put out his new record, The Brutalist Bricks, out on Matador. The new collection will be available on CD, LP, and digital formats on March 9. Do you like yellow and/or bees? Then check out the album’s cover. Do you like songs? Then check out “Even Heroes Have To Die,” the first released song from the record. Do you like seeing Leo’s shining visage in real life? Then good news: he’s touring in December

12.02.09 – Philadelphia PA – First Unitarian Church
12.03.09 – Washington DC – The Black Cat
12.05.09 – Cambridge MA – Middle East
12.06.09 – New York NY – Bowery Ballroom (sold out)
12.10.09 – Madrid, Spain – Primavera Club ‘09
12.11.09 – Barcelona, Spain – Primavera Club ‘09
12.12.09 – Barcelona, Spain – Primavera Club ‘09
12.14.09 – Brighton, UK – Engine Room (with Dillinger Four + Hard Skin) *
12.15.09 - Canterbury, UK – Bramleys *
12.16.09 – London, UK – Brixton Windmill *
12.17.09 – Kingston, UK – New Slang *
12.18.09 – London, UK – Grosvenor (with Wat Tyler) *

* solo dates

Tom Waits Reissues Special Vinyl Edition of Orphans, Talks Spider Romance

In the few years I’ve been writing for this website, my love of musicians who look/sound like olde-tyme drifters has been well-documented. If an artist sings about hard-livin’ and seems like they could’ve spent several years traveling with the circus through the backroads of Depression-era America, I’m into it. So you can imagine my delight when I heard about this new limited-edition vinyl release of Tom WaitsOrphans: Brawlers, Bawlers, and Bastards.

Scheduled for a December 8 release on ANTI-, this reworking of the 2006 collection of covers, rarities, and new tracks will feature 62 tracks over seven LPs on 180-gram vinyl. There’s also a fancy new booklet plus six tracks more than on the previously released version of Orphans. Robert Christgau deemed the album “definitive,” and fans agreed; the original Orphans was one of Waits’ best-selling releases. New offerings on the vinyl edition include covers of Fats Waller’s "Crazy ‘Bout My Baby" and Kurt Weill & Bertolt Brecht's "Canon Song.”

In other Waits news, the two-disc collection Glitter and Doom Live was just released on vinyl and CD. The first disc holds the live tracks recorded while on tour in Europe and the U.S., annnnd the second disc “holds nearly 40 minutes of Waits' quixotic ruminations on topics ranging from romantic spiders to injured vultures.” Alllllright! (Now that I think about it, I honestly really would like to hear Tom Waits’ thoughts on romantic spiders.)

This winter, Waits will also be appearing on the silver screen in Terry Gilliam’s upcoming The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus, alongside Johnny Depp, Christopher Plummer, Jude Law, and the late Heath Ledger, as well as in The Book of Eli with Denzel Washington.

Modern Radio Record Label Celebrates 10-Year Anniversary; Regular Radio Celebrates 118-Year Anniversary

Modern Radio, the fan-favorite Twin Cities label, has finally hit double digits and couldn’t be prouder. The label, a fixture in the Twin Cities indie scene, was started in 1999 by Tom Loftus and has slowly been gaining acclaim and cultural importance over the years after releasing a bevy of records by bands like The Plastic Constellations, Deerhoof, Mirah, STNNNG, and Vampire Hands. The label was started with the goal of supporting a burgeoning indie scene but soon developed into a local institution and trend-setter; the label was even named “Best Record Label of the Twin Cities” for 2006 by local weekly newspaper City Pages in 2006.

Modern Radio is so proud of its achievements that it wants to share the celebration with its fans, as it should, since the label was founded on the cornerstones of “friends, community, and music.” The label is putting together a couple shows that will highlight some of its’ current roster and give you plenty of great music to accompany cake-eating (cake not included)

01.22.10 – St. Paul, MN – Turf Club

FT (The Shadow Government)

Daughters of the Sun

The Chambermaids

Double Bird

Sheridan Fox (His Mischief)
01.23.10 – Minneapolis, MN – Cedar Cultural

The Plastic Constellations

Skoal Kodiak

Vampire Hands


and more!

In other news: radio is 118 years old this year and still knows how to get the party started.

Oh shit! Dateline: Barcelona or whatever! Get yer ya-yas out! Annie, get your gun! Get back to where you once belonged! Get Smart! Get up, get-on-up, stay on the scene like a sex machine! Yes, dudes and dudettes; major league butt-kicking is back in town! Primavera 2010 is about to take out a ruler and, you know, rule the fuck out of all those other two-bit spring and summer side-shows that call themselves big, outdoor fests. After already handing Perry Farrell's own Ben Stiller-lookin’ ass on a platter with the announcement of Pavement and Pixies headlining shows, Primavera is taking things up another few notches with their first batch of confirmed artists at the 10th annual fest, which will take place May 27-29, 2010.

Sure, some of the choices were easy enough for the Primavera organizers in Barcelona. Panda Bear? He already hangs out over in Lisbon, so he’s like right across the street. Wilco? Well, they’ve been dressing like a Hispanic Mariachi band for at least the past year or so. The Fall? What’s a better icebreaker than fans from all over the world gathering in Barcelona to muse about a band called “The Fall” playing at a festival named after the spring? It’s the ultimate Dad Joke.

For bands like The New Pornographers, The XX, Wild Beasts, The Antlers, Dum Dum Girls, and Delorean, however, the jokes, puns, and tenuous semantic associations become a little bit more difficult. But hey, that’s why I’m a capital-J Journalist, man. When I’m out of jokes, I just end the story and cut to the stats. And you know what? I make it seamless. This is a skill, folks. You have to earn this kind of power. LATER.

Complete Confirmed Artists as of November 30:

The Antlers, The Bloody Beetroots, Camarón: La Leyenda Del Tiempo 30 Años Después (Duquende and Chicuelo amongst others), Delorean, Dum Dum Girls, The Fall, Ganglians, Here We Go Magic, Hope Sandoval & The Warm Inventions, Joker featuring Nomad, The New Pornographers, Panda Bear, Pavement, Pixies, Wilco, Wild Beasts and The XX.

Tickets are on sale NOW via Ticketmaster, the CD Drome shops, RIFT shops, Seetickets UK, Fnac France and through PayPal on the fest’s website.

European Commission Says No to Three Strikes without Judicial Oversight

As previously reported by TMT, the European Union ain't taking no shit from internet-denyin' heads of government. Now they've told Spain's authorities that "measures that allow for the disruption of Internet access without a fair hearing before a judge, are certain to clash with the European Union."

These words were spoken by Vivane Reding, European Commissioner for Information Society and Media, in response to Spain's proposals to block internet access indiscriminately. She also argued that "disconnections may even run counter to the rights and freedoms which have become part of Europe’s values since the French Revolution.'"

Comrade Obama might like to be reminded of another revolution when considering his own ideas to tackle online pirates. America did not fight a bloody war with the British to have its citizens hand over their health care, SUVs, and internet access to the government.

Spencer Krug Goes Solo As Moonface, Announces Debut EP

How many projects is too many projects? If you’re Bob Pollard, trick question: there’s no such thing. If you’re most musicians, one or two should be enough. If you’re Spencer Krug, the answer lies somewhere between the range of “Bob Pollard” and “most musicians.” Indeed, the man splits his time between quite a few endeavors (Wolf Parade, Sunset Rubdown, Swan Lake, Wolf Eyes?, etc etc.) and he’s about to split in a little bit more, as he launches a solo project by the name of Moonface.

Krug is making his Moonface debut with the awesomely titled Dreamland EP: Marimba and Shit-Drums. Jagjaguwar will release the EP January 26 both digitally and as a one-sided 12-inch vinyl. Sorry, Spencer Krug obsessive with only an old boombox: you must shed bitter, bitter tears. However, you can still enjoy the dream journal that will be packaged with the vinyl! The dream journal will also be included with some of the digital downloads, though it has not been specified what exactly “some” constitutes.

Incidentally, Sunset Rubdown released an EP by the title of Introducing Moonface earlier this year. Whether the new project ties in with this release at all is currently unclear.