Tired of the musical equivalent of small-talk, or the musical equivalent of obnoxious drunkards calling attention to themselves by seeing how many scalding onion rings they can fit down their pants? Despite the “boast rap” impression that you might’ve gotten from their debut LP, Run the Jewels (Killer Mike & El-P) have a remarkably straightforward and unpretentious thing going on here, to the point where you might consider the duo as seriously cool accountants in a parallel universe. As in: the “Run the Jewels” name was chosen because it was “dope.” Success hasn’t fed their ego; instead, they’re motivated by a desire to remain… well, “dope.”
And all signs point to them continuing their bare, direct, and unwavering pursuit of the “dope” on their just-announced sophomore LP — the simply-titled RTJ2, out October 28 on Mass Appeal. There’s talk from El-P himself about the album continuing a natural trajectory toward something “darker,” but in terms of quality, Killer Mike has the ultimate, tremendously bold ruling: “it is the best rap group album since RTJ1!” (which came out last year, btw). Album appearances from Travis Barker and former Rage Against the Machine front man Zack de la Rocha might actually be bold, though.
Check the new single below, and anticipate RTJ’s contribution to Adult Swim’s Singles series on September 15.
Matt Nelson (tUnE-yArDs, Battle Trance) releasing new solo sax LP on October 21 via Tubapede Records
As an instrument, the saxophone has taken a beating to its credibility. Blame it on its overuse as the solo instrument du jour during the 1980s or the fact that Lisa Simpson was its prime advocate during the 1990s… for whatever reason, the instrument was for a long time the aural equivalent of nerd germs.
More recently, though, brave souls like Mats Gustafsson and Colin Stetson have restored the saxophone to the screaming skronky pedestal that it deserves. They even collaborated on an album called Stones last year to remind the world exactly how bad-ass saxophones can be.
Matt Nelson is another genre-bending saxophonist who wears his saxophone (around his neck with one of those little clip things) with pride. After adding his skills to early tUnE-yArDs recordings and setting ears on fire in his saxophone quartet Battle Trance Nelson is now set to unleash his solo record Lower Bottoms.
The record will be available on October 21 via Tubapede Records and features four huge, dizzying slabs of Nelson’s saxophone running through guitar pedals and feeding back into itself. It may not be the type of sax solo that INXS would approve of, but that in itself should be a reason to check it out. Pre-order it here.
The album was recorded live to tape by Eli Crews (Deerhoof, Nels Cline, tUnE-yArDs) and was apparently conceived in the lead-up to saliva gland surgery that Nelson was about to undergo which may have left him unable to wail into the future. Thankfully, Nelson got through the surgery and is now set to release Lower Bottoms and tour extensively on his own and with Battle Trance (who also have an album out soon on NNA Tapes/New Amsterdam).
Lower Bottoms tracklist:
01. Sunk Cost
02. Sworn Enemies
03. Motor Mouth
04. To Believe In What
10.04.14 - New York City, NY - The Stone
10.25.14 - Oakland, CA - Totally Intense Fractal Mindgaze Hut
10.27.14 - Portland, OR - Habesha Lounge
10.29.14 - Seattle, WA - TBA
11.30.14 - Brooklyn NY - Snugs Concert Series (Record Release Party)
Dates w/ Battle Trance:
09.01.14 - Kittery, ME - The Buoy
09.02.14 - Burlington, VT - Jenke Arts
09.03.14 - Montreal, QC - Casa del Poplo
09.04.14 - Ottawa, ON - Mugshots
09.05.14 - Toronto, ON - Array Space
09.06.14 - Cleveland, OH - Now That’s Class
09.07.14 - Chicago, IL - Constellation
09.08.14 - Detroit, MI - Trinosophes
09.09.14 - Kalamazoo, MI - TBA
09.10.14 - Oberlin, OH - Oberlin College
09.11.14 - Buffalo, NY - Silo Sessions
09.24.14 - Brooklyn, NY - Roulette
09.26.14 - Baltimore, MD - The Red Room
09.27.14 - Washington, DC - Union Arts
10.30.14 - Vancouver, BC - Emerald Lounge
11.01.14 - Seattle, WA - Earshot Jazz Festival
11.02.14 - Portland, OR - Habesha Lounge
11.04.14 - Sacramento, CA - TBA
11.05.14 - San Francisco, CA - Center for New Music
11.06.14 - Oakland, CA - Totally Intense Fractal Mindgaze Hut
11.07.14 - Los Angeles, CA - Equitable Vitrines
11.20.14 - Philadelphia, PA - The Rotunda
Hey, dude, can I get a smoke?
Thanks, pal. Got a little info for you. TEEN, you know TEEN, right? Band from Brooklyn, but who isn’t, right? Yeah, well, they put out a record earlier this year, think it was called The Way and Color, pretty sure it came out on Carpark. Pretty cool record, man, pretty cool record. Anyway, what I was getting at is, TEEN, they’re going on tour with Sondre Lerche later this year, after touring with Islands. You know Sondre Lerche? Yeah, great stuff, dude. Great stuff. Oh yeah, forgot to mention, TEEN just finished a tour in Europe. I went to Europe once. You know, screwed around in Italy, backpacked, stayed in some hostels, met some cool chicks, pretty sweet stuff.
Hey. Check this out. It’s TEEN doing a session for Insound. That’s a dope store, Insound, you should check it out. Song’s called “Toi Toi Toi” which is pretty funny. I don’t know, it just sounds funny. Ah, I’m just talking. You guys get outta here.
08.30.14 - St. Louis, MO - Firebird *
08.31.14 - Columbia, MO - Mojo’s *
09.02.14 - Kansas City, MO - The Riot Room *
09.03.14 - Norman, OK - Opolis *
09.04.14 - Dallas, TX - Club Dada *
09.05.14 - Austin, TX - The Parish *
09.06.14 - Houston, TX - Walter’s *
09.07.14 - Baton Rouge, LA - Spanish Moon *
09.09.14 - Tallahassee, FL - Club Downunder *
09.10.14 - Gainesville, FL - High Dive *
09.11.14 - Orlando, FL - The Social *
09.12.14 - Atlanta, GA - The Earl *
09.13.14 - West Columbia, SC - New Brookland Tavern *
09.15.14 - Chapel Hill, NC - Local 506 *
09.16.14 - Charlottesville, VA - The Southern *
09.18.14 - Pittsburgh, PA - Altar *
09.19.14 - Cleveland Heights, OH - Grog Shop *
09.20.14 - Louisville, KY - Zanzabar *
09.23.14 - New York, NY - Bowery Ballroom #
09.25.14 - Philadelphia, PA - Underground Arts #
09.26.14 - Washington DC - U Music Hall #
09.27.14 - Cambridge, MA - The Sinclair #
10.04.14 - Phoenix, AZ - Musical Instrument Museum #
10.05.14 - San Diego, CA - House of Blues (5th Avenue Side Stage) #
10.08.14 - Los Angeles, CA - Troubadour #
10.09.14 - San Francisco, CA - The Independent #
10.11.14 - Portland, OR - Doug Fir #
10.12.14 - Seattle, WA - Nectar Lounge #
10.15.14 - Denver, CO - Bluebird Theater #
10.16.14 - Lincoln, NE - Vega #
10.17.14 - St. Paul, MN - Turf Club #
10.18.14 - Chicago, IL - Lincoln Hall #
10.19.14 - Detroit, MI - Magic Stick #
10.21.14 - 25 Halifax, NS - Halifax Pop Explosion
# Sondre Lerche
Boston Hassle Fest 6 announces killer lineup: Body/Head, Lescalleet/Dilloway duo, Bill Orcutt, Jana Hunter, more
Another day, another festival with a killer lineup that I probably can’t attend.
Boston Hassle Fest VI, which last year featured Lightning Bolt, Black Dice, and Keith Fullerton Whitman, is BACK. The festival, put on by the Boston Hassle arts organization (which oversees the Boston Hassle website, the Boston Compass newspaper, and an extensive list of shows happening in the Boston area) will take place November 7 and 8, with day passes costing $17-$20.
And this year’s lineup is just as spectacular: Kim Gordon and Bill Nace’s project Body/Head, Nautical Almanac, Bill Orcutt, No Joy, and Jana Hunter are all slated for this year, plus Aaron Dilloway and Jason Lescalleet will be performing as a duo, PLUS Horse Lords and Prostitutes and Quicksails and so many more and I think my head just exploded.
Boston Hassle Fest 6 promises “ear exploding sonic exploration, pop that sticks to your rib, undead rock music, fearless electronics, sounds of Underground USA” and more. Don’t sit this one out.
• Boston Hassle Fest 6: http://bostonhasslefest.com
Cassette Store Day tape meetup in Brooklyn featuring rooftop flea market, cassette-only set by C Monster himself, every tape in existence
Wait. What? You wanna party on Cassette Store Day (September 27, FYI) and you come to me, a dude who is an Indiana-bound desk jockey by day on this gummed-up morrow of Midwest rain and clouds to be all like, “Taylor, you got a Facebook link to an event in Brooklyn?” I mean, yeah, I do, but how did you know I would have one? Seems like a weird misuse of your psychic abilities to predict that I would have the event link instead of, you know, just predicted the details yourself. It’s cool though. I really like typing the HTML code for link embeds, so here you go: a link to the Cassette Store Day Tape Meet in Brooklyn, hosted by Paxico Records. Come fly with me to paragraph two where, as I’m sure you have psychically predicted, several details will be paraphrased!
Okay, where to start? The whole deal is a rooftop slammer/jammer and it kicks off at 3 PM, reportedly running until 9. There will be tapes everywhere, piled ankle-high at least. It’ll look like a giant monster of tapes suddenly just fell apart and its innards (which were tapes) just fell into neat, easily-gripped piles everywhere. Certified tape-slingers like Bootleg Tapes, Dirty Tapes, Never Normal Records, and more will be in attendance, popping up shop and knocking off those glistening Norelcos, gooey centers and all. Corbinjam.es will hang to slang clothing, and representatives from TMT and Potholes in My Blog will be there to hold down the “web-based-shareable-careable content” angle, too. There will also be a special limited edition of Staycation 2 by Josh Hey, a tape art exhibition by Chris Hound, and all manner of BBQ chicken and rice dishes catered by Chef Boy P. If you’re feeling saucy (or, if you prefer, Soused), you’re also encouraged to bring your own tape collection to the party.
And! On the head, shoulders, knees, toes, ones, and twos, they’re gonna have a crew of heroic cassette jockeys reeling out jams all day, including Lord $M$, Da Ruffneck, Zona Tapes, and C Monster. “Wait, you mean that C Monster?” One and the same, pal. He, the monster of the deep and unknowable C will emerge forth from the four walls of the Choco and the occasional sick feature piece and walk amongst us meatbags, $wagged up maximum. Get there.
Italian techno producer Nick Anthony Simoncino (who I shall refer to as NAS for the remainder of this article because things are getting a little too perspicuous around these parts) is following up his slew of amazing 12-inch singles with, whoop-de-do, another presumably great 12-inch single. This one’s coming out on L.I.E.S. on August 22.
Speaking of lies, NAS dropped his new single recently, and don’t be fooled, it is not remotely beyond the dance. It is deep in the bowels of dance and the 808 handclaps start less than a minute into the song, which is a great reason to listen to a track, but dammit if Simoncino didn’t lie straight to my face. Actually, slightly to the left or right to my face. My ears.
Abele Dance tracklist:
01. Abele Dance
02. Beyond the Dance
03. Spirit of Transmat
04. iO Rhythm
• Nick Anthony Simoncino: https://soundcloud.com/simoncino
• L.I.E.S.: https://www.facebook.com/longislandelectricalsystems
New York musicians Nicolas Jaar and Dave Harrington started their Darkside project just a few years ago, and now they’re already calling it quits. Along with the announcement, the duo shared their final tour dates, which will see them hit Los Angeles, cross Europe for a string of festivals, and bow out with one last show at Brooklyn’s Masonic Temple on September 12. Tickets for this show sold out promptly after they went on sale, and right now they’re going for as much as $200 a pop online. Because if there’s one thing that card-carrying Brooklynites love, it’s telling everyone that they saw [insert band name or short-lived DIY venue here] for the last time, everrrr. [Full disclosure: I will be at this show guys!]
It seems Darkside knew that this sad news would jaar your systems (had to), so they saved two B-sides from Psychic to cushion the blow. “Gone Too Soon” takes a dingy disco approach, with some David Byrney yelps and a tribal cadence, and “What They Say” rides a skeletal, analog sequence blended with pinging guitar lines. Both cuts and the final tour dates can be found below; if you want to see Darkside play one last time, jump on those tickets soon before Kiev is your only option. Keep in mind, the band’s break-up tweet did say “darkside is coming to an end, for now” after all. There’s always room for a reunion tour.
Darkside tour dates:
08.24.14 - Los Angeles, CA - FYF Fest
08.27.14 - Pula, Croatia - Dimensions Festival
08.29.14 - Zurich, Switzerland - Zürich Openair
08.31.14 - Izmir-Cesme, Turkey - Orange Date
09.02.14 - Istanbul, Turkey - Orange Date
09.03.14 - Kiev, Ukraine - Studio G13
09.04.14 - Vilnius, Lithuania - Loftas Fest
09.05.14 - Berlin, Germany - Berlin Festival
09.06.14 - Isle of Wight, UK - Bestival
09.12.14 - Brooklyn, NY - Brooklyn Masonic Temple (sold out)
[Photo: Jed Demoss]
What to make of Craig Clouse and his music as Shit and Shine? He does not give a damn about you, clearly. Yet that does not seem to matter. His music is “difficult,” noisy, freewheeling between rock, disco, and techno, proving those terms pretty ineffective. His live shows are occultish affairs, with multiple drummers syncopating or just banging away over blasts of synthesized noise. Then there’s Clouse’s recorded music, which sounds as though he’s found an old song on a cassette and then overdubbed it and then pulled the tape out of it and then crumpled it all up in his hands, cackling, and then spooled it back in. And it sounds oh so good, which I can assert with no concern for judgment because you’re a TMT reader and you tend to like unappealing things (and links).
Shit and Shine’s last album was 2012’s Jream Baby Jream for Riot Season and there’s no use in describing that one, so just listen to this. Next will be Powder Horn, Shit and Shine’s second release (the first being a self-titled EP) on techno-deconstructionist, electro-anarchist, rave-reactionist Powell’s totally whack label Diagonal. As of this Tuesday it’s available for purchase. The press release describes the album as “deviant funk, wiry disco and burnt-out acid,” but also “tactile and affectionate.” Well hey, sounds good!
Listen to “Pearl Drop” below and check out the tracklist down below.
Powder Horn tracklist:
01. Astro’s Hat
02. Who’s Your Waitress
03. Pearl Drop
06. Acid Minor
07. You Can’t
08. PG 13
09. Spray Bottle
Thurston Moore is now on record as saying, “Black metal is music made by pussies of the lowest order.” That’s a fitting epitaph for the guitarist, maybe, although it’ll have to beat out “Confusion is sex” and “All the girls there playin’ on a jelly roll” (because tombstones should be nothing if not emblematic of a person’s work and also completely perplexing).
So Moore has come out against the “sound and attitude” of the current black metal scene, calling it a “loss of self, life, light and desire,” but don’t worry — he’s also going to fix it, supposedly, with his new record Full Bleed, a collab with drummer John Moloney.
Moore and Moloney have worked together a bunch in various projects, including Chelsea Light Moving. Oh, and they also know each other from the time when Moore’s old band — you know, that ol’ troupe called Sonic Youth — enlisted Moloney’s collective Sunburned Hand of the Man for a tour.
The new album contains “nine Herculean sludgefests dripping of gnarly-metal damaged heaviosity and punk-jazz-skronk-splattered fury,” per Northern Spy, who will be releasing the album. Okay! The album includes tracks with titles like “Arguing With a Balloon” and “Rubber Grandma,” so… it all sounds like fun.
Full Bleed is out October 21, which, coincidentally, is the new release date for the Scott Walker/sunn O))) project. Hopefully you don’t have to choose between the two collaborations. That would be brutal.
Full Bleed tracklist:
01. Age Limit
02. Nothing Glamorous
03. Full Bleed
05. Arguing With a Balloon
07. Reverse Funeral
09. Rubber Grandma
SoundCloud adding ads and artist payments; I break down the changes as an extended Gossip Girl metaphor
SoundCloud’s makin’ it rain, y’all! Well, a little bit of rain at least, for a select few. But hey, musical artists, like the great state of California, are always at least sort of in the middle of a drought. Here’s the deal: SoundCloud recently launched an exciting, exclusive new Premier Partner Program. It’s by invite only, which makes it easier to understand how the new SoundCloud membership system, called On SoundCloud, will work according to a ratings system based off the mid-2000s CW network teen drama Gossip Girl.
The first level, Partner, is basic. Like, BASIC basic. So this is the Vanessa level. It’s free and it allows new users to join the “community,” post a song, and then get feedback and basic stats on it. It works in a coffee shop and goes to public school, where it hates on the kids who got invites to the Premier Partner Program. As time goes on and the series runs out of plotlines, the Partner Level will run around Manhattan trying to sneak into gala events to “teach people a lesson” yet somehow drunkenly hook up with the hottest cast member on the show for a regrettable 2-3 episode mini arc.
Next comes the Pro level. After a lengthy debate (20 seconds) I have concluded that this is the Dan Humphrey level. The Pro level gets more upload time and more detailed stats, which it will spout out at you in a whimsical and awkward fashion so that you get it — really get it — that this level is the smart, ambitious kid from Brooklyn. You’re well off in comparison to most of America because you live in an insane loft/art gallery with your sensitive rocker dad, but you, like, don’t have a yacht or checkerboard flooring in your foyer, so you’re forever looking in, tapping on the frozen window like that orphan in A Christmas Carol. “Daaaaaaaad where’s my lunch kombucha daaaaaaaaad!!!!!! I like the works of George Saunders.” That’s this level.
Finally, the almighty Premier Partner level. The invite-only level. The Skull and Crossbones Society level of SoundCloud. You have to murder an underling and bathe in his or her blood to get into this one. (Just kidding, we’re sure it’s a complicated algorithm that’s very scientific and shit.) This level gets exclusive features, promotional opps, and the chance to make $$$ on the new advertising platform. You might say this is the Serena van der Woodsen of levels, but then you would be wrong. You watched Gossip Girl all wrong. You wasted your life. Because no, this is the Blair Waldorf of levels.
According to an actual SoundCloud statement, “In addition to supporting creators, ads will keep the service free and open for people to listen to SoundCloud. Audio ads will only be served on the content of Premier Partners with their explicit consent. If you have a Free, Pro or Pro Unlimited account, you will not have any audio ads placed on your tracks.” The statement did not reveal whether specific details of the ritual sacrifice one must enter into in order to join Premier, or whether the company swings more toward Team Blair or Team Serena. XOXO.
• SoundCloud: https://soundcloud.com