Too Pure Announces Singles Club; My Birthday Coming Up

A Brief History of the Singles Club:

- Sub Pop had one
- Kill Rock Stars had one
- Several smaller labels currently have 'em
- The Massachusetts/New Hampshire Singles Club is the first result for "singles club" on Google
- Too Pure does one
- First robotic president outlaws distribution and use of all analog media

In a move that warmed the hearts of people the world over who constantly get told they'd like High Fidelity, Too Pure Records announced the beginning of a singles club this October. While artists such as Electrelane, Scout Niblett, and Stereolab have called Too Pure home, the club seems more focused on lesser-known artists the label has deemed worthy of attention. The first handful of artists includes Lone Lady, Vera November (a.k.a. Verity Susman of Electrelane), and It Hugs Back.

Membership costs £30 for British residents, and £35 for international record geeks. The bad news is that it adds up to almost $70 for Americans, but the good news is that you get 12 records, postage paid and the rights to download digital versions of the songs courtesy of Rough Trade Online. Moreover, the records are limited to 500 apiece and will be distributed almost exclusively through the club, with "a very small number distributed to select indies."

Memberships can be purchased via the Too Pure website. And if it's anything like the grilled cheese I purchased for lunch, it will be delicious and have an unplaceable spiciness that will make you want to buy another membership tomorrow or even later today.

Iron & Wine Shaves Beard, Immediately Grows Back In Time For Tour And… The End of the World! Details Below

Late last night, I received a call. No, it wasn’t a “Dear John” from the missus (though that came eventually... look for updates later); instead, a gravelly voice came through the receiver: “Go to YouTube, watch Iron & Wine videos. And wear your 3-D glasses.” I tried to get the caller’s name to no avail, so I gave in and found some videos. The results were shocking.

Luckily, I swiped 3-D specs from my last viewing of Muppet Vision 3-D at Universal Studios. While viewing “Naked As We Came,” directed by Iron & Wine/Sam Beam (not to be confused with Sean Bean), the screen burst into glowing colors; diagrams unfurled before me with dazzling precision... I saw... I saw his plans for the End of the World in the video! Sub Pop scientists explain that they have pinpointed the day of the global-warming apocalypse, just like on the cover of the new Smashing Pumpkins record). The video intimates details of the Iron & Wine Contingency Plan (something about defacing Mount Rushmore like Zod in Superman II, while Beam reigns over South Dakota with an iron beard). It didn’t divulge any specifics, but the closing message promised the answer would be buried somewhere inside the forthcoming Iron & Wine album, The Shepherd’s Dog. Then it was over...

Mysterious 3-D Messages Abound At:

Rilo Kiley to Release Under the Blacklight This August, Five Things Jenny Lewis Did That Are More Valuable than Her Music; Seriously, Jenny, Baby, Sweetheart: There Are Career Opportunities Opening Daily in Real Estate Or As Conor Oberst’s Living Shelf-Doll

Misleading headline:

The remainder of this article DOES NOT provide ANY evidence that Conor Oberst keeps flower-power INDIE!-a-go-go chickys (like Jenny Lewis) on lock-down in His basement to act as concubines-o’-da’-sweet-jams. NO EVIDENCE EXISTS that He sits in that basement, hood-up, playing “First Day of My Life” as many times as He deems fit, while said flower-power INDIE!-a-go-go chickys repeatedly bless themselves on His command to avoid a hefty tongue-lashing, or, another heart-string-pullin’ rendition of “First Day Of My Life.” There is, additionally, NO EVIDENCE that the phrase “flower-power INDIE!-a-go-go chickys” serves as an appropriate catch-all for describing less-fortunate (fictitious) music love slaves of Oberst.

TRUE STORY, though:

Rilo Kiley’s Under the Blacklight is scheduled for release August 21 in the United States. Buy it, reader, else the first time you hear the sweet jams is sure to be on the Grey’s Anatomy-- du jour of the time! GASP!

5 INCENDIARY CAREER MOVES, JENNY:

1. Kicking ass as Hannah Nefler in Troop Beverly Hills
2. Co-starring with Shelley Long in Troop Beverly Hills
3. Appearing on a single episode of Murder She Wrote in 1994
4. (Literally) being in the same room as Angela Lansbury on an episode of Murder She Wrote in 1994
5. (Figuratively) being in the same room as J.B. Fletcher (played by Angela Lansbury) on Murder She Wrote in 1994

Hands down, Angela Lansbury trumps this.

Oh, and Blake “Soper,” nothing beats three episodes on Salute Your Shorts. Puhhhhhleassse.

DON’T NOT QUIT YOUR DAY JOB, UNLESS THE INCENTIVE IS A LUXURY CRUISE WITH ANGELA LANSBURY WHERE YOU BOTH CAN ENJOY FRUIT DRINKS AND BLING SUNGLASSES:

$ Modest Mouse

Doubts arise, I'm sure, as to why Neil Hamburger — a stand-up comedian — gets constant mention in the independent music media.

A small HIStory lesson is in order. Neil Hamburger, Christian name Gregg Turkington, was owner of über-independent music label Amarillo Records in the 90s, with a roster that included Faxed Head, Zip Code Rapists, and The Three Doctors — all containing Turkington as a member. Each of those bands, incidentally, also featured Trey Spruance -- yes, of Mr. Bungle and Secret Chiefs 3 fame, but also of the label Web of Mimicry, which later released Chiropractic, Faxed Head's third album.

The music business being what it is (full of decrepit and drug-addled degenerates), Turkington found only moderate success among those with expendable income for all things entertainment. Each band he was in either broke up or slowly faded from existence, an unfortunate byproduct of a glue-sniffing pastime, and shortly thereafter, Neil Hamburger was born, already middle-aged and suffering from lung cancer. A deal with Drag City followed.

Turkington-turned-Hamburger has circulated some interesting rounds lately, including a stint on Fox News' Red Eye. More recently he was a featured guest on Tomgreen.com. But most importantly, he'll be back 'round the Midwest doing his stand-up routine, replete with new material and magician Dr. El Suavo opening some dates. So, what does his stand-up routine have to do with music again? Why don't you pay the $10 and go find out for yourself, you cocksucker!?

* with Dr. El Suavo

# with Daiquiri

Dirty Projectors Announce Fall Tour, “Rewrites” Black Flag’s Damaged From Memory; I Have No Input at All

I think my brain is malfunctioning this week. I've read the one sheet about the new album a few times in a row this week, but it's still not quite sinking in. You see, Dirty Projectors mastermind David Longstreth has "reimagined" Black Flag's Damaged in an attempt to "stage his own theft of the punk rock spirit." According to the press release:

From beginning to end, Dirty Projectors' new offering, Rise Above, is a reimagining of Black's Flag seminal 1981 record Damaged. It is not a covers record. Longstreth attempted to rewrite his favorite adolescent album word for word, from memory.

Am I missing something? Don't get me wrong. I like Dirty Ps. I like them a lot actually, but I just don't quite get it. Explain it to me, readers! Anyway, Rise Above comes out on Dead Oceans September 11. Members of Grizzly Bear were involved in the recording, or something, and uh... Dirty Ps will tour beginning in August...

Sorry, I have lost all interest in this article. My brain must be shutting down again.

Rise Above tracklisting:

Soft Machine Founder and Living Legend Kevin Ayers Returns with a Fanclub of Ladybugs from Helsinki

Many musicians try to make a go in this absurd industry, solely to savor that delicious power that comes with having someone on the payroll whose primary role is to pick the yellow M&Ms out of the rider bowl with their asscheeks or the satisfaction that comes with trying to break your groupie “hour plow” record nightly. Don’t get me wrong, we love hearing about it, but sometimes it makes us feel a whole lot hollow inside. A few folk have an altogether more refreshing slant on making music. Kevin Ayers, for example, seems to have it all figured out. After running ramshot over listeners’ expectations early in his career with a number of groundbreaking critic’s faves (Soft Machine, Wilde’s Flowers), he realized that it is decidedly better to fade away and rust rather than to burn. Ayers has spent the last few decades playing the nomad, jamming and recording with friends and admirers, and famously, never taking himself too seriously.

Celebrated among the unconventionals for his influential work with Daevid Allen and Robert Wyatt in Soft Machine for a right-smart spell, Ayers has more recently been rightfully given his dues by the wicker men and ladies fair of the psychedelic pastoral scene, mostly because his imaginative late-1960s/early-1970s solo albums, which have been revisited through the power of the reissue. As is increasingly the case, the piper has united with some of his rats to record a new album, due on LO-MAX Records September 3. The Unfairground, Ayers’ first album in 15-odd years, was recorded in pieces in New York, Tucson, Glasgow, and London by Gary Olson, Peter Henderson, and Ayers himself, and is chockablock with impressive collaborators. Here is the full supporting cast and songlist for the album:

Gary Olson (Ladybug Transistor), Jeff Baron (Ladybug Transistor), Heather McIntosh (Ladybug Transistor, etc.), San Fadyl (Ladybug Transistor), Joe McGinty (keyboard wizard, Baby Steps), Norman Blake (Teenage Fanclub), Francis MacDonald (Teenage Fanclub), Euros Childs (Gorky’s Zygotic Mynci), Bill Wells (UK avant-jazz great), Kellie Sutherland (Architecture in Helsinki), Tara Shackell (Architecture in Helsinki), Isobel Knowles (Architecture in Helsinki), Phil Manzanera (Roxy Music), Gus Franklin (Architecture in Helsinki), Frank Reader (Trashcan Sinatras), Robbie McIntosh (guitar hero), Candie Payne (Liverpool’s finest songbird), Robert Wyatt (Robert Wyatt), Hugh Hopper (Soft Machine), Graham Henderson (frequent Ayers sidekick), Julian Koster (Neutral Milk Hotel, etc.), Daisy Martey (Noonday Underground, Morcheeba), Bridget St. John (husky-voiced psych-folk legend), Dave McGowan (Isobel Campbell, Teenage Fanclub).

1. Wide Awake
2. Cold Shoulder
3. Walk on Water
4. Friends & Strangers
5. Brainstorm
6. Unfairground
7. Baby Come Home
8. Shine a Light
9. Run Run Run
10. Only Heaven Knows