The Thing plan new album BOOT! for November; read this article only if you are prepared to laugh your buns right off

The Thing plan new album BOOT! for November; read this article only if you are prepared to laugh your buns right off

The Thing — the Scandinavian free-jazz trio made up of Mats Gustafsson, Ingebrigt Håker Flaten, and Paal Nilssen-Love — are a hard musical group to talk about for a guy like me with a bunch of cut-ups for friends. I’ll be all like “Oh, Greg, did you hear that The Thing have a new record coming out on November 5?” and Greg’ll say, “Which thing? HAHAHAHAHA!” Ha ha, Greg, keep laughing and we’ll see how funny it is when I turn your entire throat inside out, how about that? Or get this, I was telling my friend Stephanie that the album’s called BOOT! and that it’s The Thing’s sixth studio album and she was just like, “BOOT!? Just one? Where’s the other one? Are they waiting… on the other boot to drop?!?!?”

My guy out in San Fran, Rufus, called me up the other night and before I could even get in a single word he just blurted out, “Did you hear that BOOT! was recorded over three ‘intense days?’ Sounds crazy. You wanna hear what I did for three intense days… with your mom?” Geez, Rufus, get a life. And Rory, god, Rory is the worst. She wanted to let me know that BOOT! features re-worked versions of compositions by John Coltrane and Duke Ellington, but she couldn’t pull herself together long enough to even do that. I guess she was too busy inviting me to Applebee’s for dinner just so she could put our name in as Donner and laugh at the host when he called out “Donner, party of two?” I’m sure I don’t have to tell you that I left that Applebee’s in a major huff.

I also told my neighbor Charlie about the impressive list of people that The Thing have worked with either collectively or as individuals, especially because I knew he was a fan of people like Neneh Cherry, The Ex, Peter Brötzmann, Sonic Youth, and Merzbow, but all he could say was, “Heh, I hope you’re checking that list twice… you know? Like Santa Claus would!” Really, Charlie?

But that’s enough about me. Like I tried to tell my friends, BOOT! is out November 5 on The Thing Records. According to the label’s site (which is run by the group), there are also plans to re-issue the group’s entire back catalog, with 2011’s Mono coming first, later this fall. And no, Mitch, a “back catalog” is not a big book where you order new backs and have them delivered to your house. For crying out loud, that doesn’t even approach being funny. Get a hold of yourself man, you’re an adult!

BOOT! tracklist:

01. India
02. ReBOOT
03. Heaven
04. Red River
05. BOOT
06. Epilog

• The Thing:

Black Hearted Brother, featuring former members of Slowdive and Seefeel, announce debut album Stars Are Our Home

The full-fledged return of shoegaze… probably won’t ever happen, because My Bloody Valentine have assured shoegazing aspirants that attempts to replicate their legend will be met with nigh impossible odds and Kevin Shields calling you at home and breathing heavily into the receiver. But there’s an alternative: design sneakers with a smartphone enclosure, so that hypnotized stares can be redirected from the hands down to the feet. Thus, we have the rebirth of shoegaze! One could also predict a simultaneous and unprecedented boon to the chiropractic industry.

Here’s yet another alternative: refer to the music being created as something else entirely, such as “indulgent space rawk” — the phrase used by Neil Halstead, formerly of Slowdive, to describe the debut album from Black Hearted Brother, a band comprised of Halstead, Mark Van Hoen (Locust, Seefeel), and Nick Holton (Opulent Oog). We only have but one single to go on, listenable below, but the fuzziness presides, even if the track ultimately does have a certain “rawk” quality to it.

Stars Are Our Home will be released on October 22 through Slumberland, and proclamations of spaciness aside, Halstead assures us of the album’s intra-diversity: “The idea was to just make a record that was in some ways ‘unedited.’ To not worry about a particular sound or style, but to just go with the flow. We all make quite focused records individually so, as Mark says, it’s our ‘guilty pleasures’ album.” And re: the point about “guilty pleasures,” who hasn’t occasionally spent a weekend dressed in a tinfoil body suit as a means of warding off remote control from extra-terrestrials? Yeah, an alien influence appears, if you judge by the tracklisting. Not the children! Take meeeeeeeee…

Stars Are Our Home tracklisting:

01. Stars Are Our Home
02. (I Don’t Mean to) Wonder
03. This Is How It Feels
04. Got Your Love
05. If I Was Here to Change Your Mind
06. UFO
07. Time in the Machine
08. Oh Crust
09. Take Heart
10. My Baby Just Sailed Away
11. I’m Back
12. Look Out Here They Come

• Black Hearted Brother:
• Slumberland:

Tera Melos to headline tour with Zorch and Fang Island, because I definitely don’t already feel like an asshole for not practicing the guitar more

You ready to feel like a real jerk for all the times you chose to not practice the guitar and instead went out and did silly things with your friends like eating so much cereal it wouldn’t all fit in your mouth? Well you better get ready, because according to both the internet and the cool old lady down my street who is really into math rock, Tera Melos are going on tour this fall. They’re starting off in September opening for Minus the Bear, and once October rolls around they’ll headline with Zorch, and a little bit later, be joined by Fang Island. Tera Melos, Zorch, and Fang Island are all Sargent House label buddies so you know they’re going to get into some zany hijinks and high-five a lot, all while playing their instruments better than you could ever dream of doing.

Tera Melos are touring on their latest release, this year’s X’ed Out. Zorch has a new one out this year, too, called ZZOORRCCHH. Minus the Bear and Fang Island both put out albums last year, because apparently all of these bands are also better at actually putting out records than any of us. You can watch the video for Tera Melos’ “Weird Circles” below, but only do so if you are prepared to see a bunch of fellahs bragging about how they’re so good at music that they’ve transcended “mere practicing.” Now they apparently spend most of their time puttering around the way you wish you could, by eating breakfast like sloppy goofballs and getting in some serious chill-time with their puppet bros.


09.09.13 - San Francisco, CA - Slim’s *
09.10.13 - Los Angeles, CA - The Fonda Theatre *
09.11.13 - Solana Beach, CA - Belly Up Tavern *
09.13.13 - Denver, CO - Marquee Theatre *
09.14.13 - Santa Fe, NM - Railway *
09.16.13 - Austin, TX - Emo’s East *
09.17.13 - Houston, TX - House of Blues *
09.18.13 - New Orleans, LA - Tipitina’s *
09.19.13 - Dallas, TX - Granada Theatre *
09.20.13 - Lawrence, KS - Granada Theatre *
09.22.13 - Salt Lake City, UT - The Depot *
09.24.13 - Pomona, CA - The Glass House *
10.15.13 - Boise, ID - The Crux @
10.17.13 - Denver, CO - Larimer Lounge @
10.19.13 - Columbia, MO - MOJO @
10.20.13 - St. Louis, MO - The Demo @
10.22.13 - Columbus, OH - The Basement @
10.23.13 - Chicago, IL - Subterranean @
10.24.13 - Ann Arbor, MI - Blind Pig @
10.25.13 - Cleveland, OH - Grog Shop @
10.26.13 - Buffalo, NY - Tralf #
10.27.13 - Ithaca, NY - The Haunt #
10.29.13 - Northampton, MA - Pearl Street#
10.30.13 - New York, NY - Bowery Ballroom #
10.31.13 - Allston, MA - Brighton Music Hall #
11.01.13 - Philadelphia, PA - First Unitarian Church #
11.02.13 - Washington DC - Rock and Roll Hotel #
11.03.13 - Richmond, VA - Strange Matter @
11.05.13 - Charlotte, NC - Visulite Theatre @
11.06.13 - Asheville, NC - Isis Music Hall @
11.07.13 - Athens, GA - New Earth Music Hall @
11.08.13 - Birmingham, AL - Bottletree @
11.13.13 - Tucson, AZ - Club Congress @
11.17.13 - Santa Cruz, CA - The Crepe Place @
11.20.13 - Spokane, WA - The Center @
11.21.13 - Bellingham, WA - The Shakedown @
11.22.13 - Eugene, OR - WOW Hall @

* Minus the Bear
@ Zorch
# Zorch, Fang Island

• Tera Melos:
• Zorch:
• Fang Island:
• Sargent House:

Behold! Magik Markers return with a new album on Drag City in November!

If you, dear reader, are like (most of) the staff here at TMT, the headline of this article has made you go from :| to :D in a matter of seconds.

Magik Markers have been uncharacteristically quiet as of late. Considering how prolific the group was between 2005 and 2009, releasing at least two dozen albums, CD-Rs, singles, and EPs, the period following 2009’s Balf Quarry (TMT Review) has seen the well dry up.

If you didn’t know, we here at TMT are long-time fans of Elisa Ambrogio and Pete Nolan’s particular brand of cacophonous, often abrasive musical vandalism and we’ve felt a hollow void at the center of our hearts since 2009. Sure, they’ve put out a cassette or two and played a few gigs here and there (including a show at 2012’s Spy Music Festival presented by the fine folks over at Northern Spy + this very publication) but not enough to fill the emptiness inside us. Seriously, check out the huge gap in their Discogs entry or try searching for them on our site. Needless to say, we are excited.

The record, titled Surrender to the Fantasy, will be available from Drag City on November 19. In addition to being their first proper album in four years, Surrender to the Fantasy marks John Shaw’s first full-length studio recording as a part of the Markers. Shaw, a founding member of both Son of Earth and The Believers, originally joined Ambrogio and Nolan to augment their live sound, fleshing out their sonic assault with some much welcomed low end after the departure of Leah Quimby in 2006. With a few years of touring with the Markers under his belt, Shaw adds a new dynamic to their studio sound, helping the band move forward in their continuing evolution.

If you can’t wait until November, Drag City will be releasing the “Ice Skater” 7-inch in a matter of weeks on September 17. There are miniature previews for both “Ice Skater” and its B-side “Machines” right here. “Ice Skater” definitely seems a bit… different than most of their other work, with “Machines” featuring a good ‘ol splash of skronk and feedback. It will be interesting to see if these short clips are an indication of what’s to come on Surrender to the Fantasy. Check the tracklist below and some upcoming tour dates, with more to come in 2014.

Surrender to the Fantasy tracklist:

01. Crebs
02. Acts of Desperation
03. Bonfire
04. Mirrorless
05. American Sphinx Face
06. Young
07. Empire Building
08. Screams of Birds and Girls
09. WT


09.02.13 - Easthampton, MA - Feeding Tube Records *
09.03.13 - Philadelphia, PA - Johnny Brenda’s %
09.04.13 - Washington, DC - Black Cat
09.05.13 - Charlottesville, NC - Tea Bazaar ^
09.06.13 - Raleigh, NC - The Five Star (Hopscotch Festival)
11.22.13 - Camber Sands, UK - ATP Festival (End of an Era pt. 1)

* Richard Youngs, Dredd Foole/Ben Chasny duo
% Wolf Eyes, Endless Boogie
^ The Beets

• Magik Markers:
• Drag City:

Arp announces MORE LP; is it still cool to reference that Will Ferrell SNL skit?

You can’t rely on your expectations. A religious perspective might promote the theory that the Earth and all of its inhabitants operate like well-oiled cogs in an otherwise incomprehensible machine, but in realty, the next time you open the door to your residence, it could go flying off its hinges and float off into the sky, as you stand there on your porch wondering just how much helium they somehow pumped into that thing. Well no, appreciating the laws of physics, the chances of that happening remain infinitesimal, but deep in the human unconscious lies an interest in holding the door knob just a bit tighter, because given the right circumstances… it could totally happen! Flying doors everywhere! Magic carpet rides are a thing of the past, my friend!

Much more within the realm of possibility, it’s not uncommon for musicians or bands to do a near 180° in terms of the style of their output. As someone who’s principally, though not purposefully, drawn to music-sans-lyrics, I’ve seen this happen with more or less spontaneous decisions to incorporate vocals, but for Alexis Georgopoulos a.k.a. Arp, the change appears to be a bit more stark. Borne from a desire to “challenge himself” by writing songs without the primary use of an analog synthesizer, his new album MORE, due September 17, maintains a melodic similarity, but is otherwise bound to have an appeal separate from the electronic pleasantness of his previous album The Soft Wave.

Expectations belied, much to the satisfaction of Bowie fans everywhere. Maybe I’m imagining things:

• Arp:
• Smalltown Supersound:

OvO bring a new album to their loyal followers on Earth, ride down from heaven on a Supernatural Cat

Using a symbol for a band name instead of pronounceable words has always been cool. For those of you who have been asleep for the past quarter-century, here is Prince’s Wikipedia page. Probably no connection between the poster-boy for pop androgyny changing his name to the “Love Symbol” and Italian death metal/noise/experimental group OvO choosing their non-name, but it’s a sort-of connection. The OvO symbol does somehow capture the character of Stefania Pedretti and Bruno Dorella’s auditory assault. It’s like their screeching, rumbling, crashing sound is a storm and their name-symbol is the face of a terrified baby owl whose tree home is about to get smashed to tinder by the hurricane gales. No, that’s probably too cute. Maybe it’s more analogous to the masks Pedretti and Dorella wear during performances?

Maybe clarification will be found on their new LP Abisso, which is Italian for abyss. Stare into Abisso like a divining pool and all of OvO’s secrets will be lightning-bolted straight into your cerebral cortex. Of course, buying the album when it comes out November 4 will be necessary. Let your fingers do the walking over to Supernatural Cat’s website and bookmark it. Then check it everyday until the album comes out like you have nothing better to do with your time. The mysteries contained therein and the true meaning of OvO’s symbol will be deeply relevant to the future of all humanity. Alternately, it could just be an ear-rending, soul-immolating noise album. There’s really no losing on this one.

• OvO:
• Supernatural Cat: