What’s up, Mr. Parks? Since I know you’re reading this as you gear up for the release of your new album Songs Cycled, I thought I’d shoot a couple questions your way. Vanny D., do you remember which country raised you? Do you remember which country instilled in you the belief that the only way to make yourself truly valuable was to amass as much property and capital as possible? Do you remember which country taught you that there should be no taxation without representation, and that apple pie and baseball are the only pure pleasures in this world? Have you forgotten???
Dear readers, it would appear as if Mr. Parks has turned his back on the great nation of America! Though, of course, Songs Cycled will be available, eventually, in the US, it won’t be released until July 23. That’s over two months after the UK release date of May 6! This is an OUTRAGE!! A travesty! And, okay, maybe you’re sitting at home saying to yourself, “Chill out a little bit, Taylor. I mean, yes, America is the greatest country in the world and all, but come on, at least we can stream the album ahead of time online, let’s take solace in that!” Well, if you are indeed saying this to your computer, I would first remind you that I cannot hear you, and second, I would suggest that you, as the saying goes, “check yourself before you wreck yourself,” because, dear friends, the online stream of Songs Cycled hosted by The Guardian is NOT AVAILABLE IN THE UNITED STATES! Don’t believe me? Check for yourself right here. (There are rumors, unconfirmed on my end though they may be, that if you can fake a British accent well enough while on the page, it will let you listen to the tracks. I say give it a shot).
So yes, of course Songs Cycled will still feature a probably delightful array of tunes, both covers and originals, with guest vocal spots from the likes of Gaby Moreno and Irana George. And yes, Vanny D. is still very much the king of American songwriters (er… I mean the president), and it’d take a whole lot more than a little British favoritism on his part for us to be able to quit him. We Americans are nothing if not forgiving and possessed of short memories! Even so, it’s stuff like this that wounds the square-jawed and barrel-chested patriot in me, ya know? If you can get over the pain of your wounded patriotism, maybe catch him at a few dates throughout May, listed below.
Songs Cycled tracklist:
01. Dreaming of Paris (original)
02. Hold Back Time (re-recording of song from Orange Crate Art)
03. Sassafras (new recording, originally by Billy Edd Wheeler)
04. Black Gold (a fantasy on the sinking of The Prestige, off the coast of the Bay of Biscay, recorded in 2002)
05. Aquarium (cover of Saint-Saëns piece, recorded in 1971 with the Esso Trinidad Steel Band)
06. Money Is King (picks up where “Wall Street” ends, written with Growling Tiger, a.k.a. Trinidadian Calypso musician Neville Marcano)
07. Wall Street (original)
08. The Parting Hand (version of a Sacred Harp hymn from the 1800s)
09. The All Golden (a re-recording from Song Cycle)
10. Wedding in Madagascar (version of traditional folk song)
11. Missin’ Mississippi (original)
12. Amazing Graces (ft. The Van Dyke Parks Orchestra)
Upcoming Van Dyke Parks dates:
05.05.13 - London, UK - ATP I’ll Be Your Mirror
05.19.13 - Brooklyn, NY - Big Sur Brooklyn Bridge
05.23.13 - Brooklyn, NY - Music Hall of Williamsburg (Speaking on a panel as part of the Red Bull Music Academy)
Do you ever come home from a hard day at work with an urge to unwind by a sea of sludgy monochromatic nihilism? Yeah, me too. Well, that sharp thirst just a got a little easier to slake now that the interweb has gotten a lot doomier; as The Quietus report, sunn 0)))’s ENTIRE discography can now be streamed FOR FREE via their Bandcamp page (and purchased for ~$8 per release if you’re so inclined).
Is there anything more comforting than drone? It’s the wombadelic sound of pre-ego existence, the sonic warmth of a life free from the burdens of the world, music awash in the primal need to express our thoughts through sound. sunn 0))) helped renew popular interest in this musical form, producing albums that act as metallic reflections of Tony Conrad’s seminal drone visions. There’s a certain unplaceable gratification in confronting oblivion head on, facing an aural void of absurd existential derangement with a welcome sense of masochism.
In light of our many debts to sunn 0))), go on, get comfortable, and gratify yourself already; and while you’re at it, you might as well digitally purchase a masterwork or four for good measure. I know I will.
• sunn 0))) Bandcamp: http://sunn.bandcamp.com
Big Freedia going on tour with The Postal Service; HEIGHTS EVERYWHERE HEIGHTS EVERYWHERE HEIGHTS EVERYWHERE
Recently, I was at a wishing well. You know, hanging out at a wishing well, just like people do on a Saturday or Sunday. Since it was a, you know, wishing well, I threw a quarter in and made a wish. The same wish I always make: that Big Freedia would go on tour with The Postal Service.
LOOKS LIKE MY WISH CAME TRUE.
As absolutely insane and amazing as it sounds, bounce MC Big Freedia is going on tour with the recently-reunited Postal Service this July. This means that thousands of misty-eyed, sweater-wearing (yes, even in the summer) folk will face a phalanx of shaking butts and the mighty cry of “ASS EVERYWHERE ASS EVERYWHERE ASS EVERYWHERE” this summer. I doubt anything better is happening all year.
Here’s how Freedia herself puts it: “I’m so excited to open shows with The Postal Service. I love being put with artists that people wouldn’t expect — and they are raw as hell.” When I die, put that on my tombstone. “Eric Nagurney 1987-2052 ‘[The Postal Service] are raw as hell’ - Big Freedia”
Big Freedia + The Postal Service dates:
07.16.13 - Vancouver, BC - Rogers Arena
07.17.13 - Portland, OR - Rose Garden Arena
07.18.13 - Seattle, WA - Key Arena
07.20.13 - Santa Barbara, CA - Santa Barbara Bowl
07.21.13 - San Diego, CA - SDSU Open Air Theatre
07.23.13 - Los Angeles, CA - Greek Theatre
07.26.13 - Berkeley, CA - Greek Theatre Berkeley
Slayer guitarist and founding member Jeff Hanneman died earlier today of liver failure. He was 49.
The band’s longtime publicist issued the following statement today:
“Slayer is devastated to inform that their bandmate and brother, Jeff Hanneman, passed away at about 11AM this morning near his Southern California home. He was 49. Hanneman was in an area hospital when he suffered liver failure. He is survived by his wife Kathy, his sister Kathy and his brothers Michael and Larry, and will be sorely missed.”
Hanneman co-founded the thrash metal greats with Kerry King in 1981; their breakthrough came in 1986 with the landmark album “Reign in Blood.” Hanneman wrote or co-wrote the set’s standout tracks, “Angel of Death” and “Raining Blood.”
• Slayer: http://www.slayer.net
Ende Tymes doing fundraiser for May festival: Aaron Dilloway, Macronympha, Crank Sturgeon, Pulse Emitter, Bhob Rainey, Andy Ortmann, more
As John spake it in the holy book of Revelation, chapter one, verse seven, “Look, it is coming with the clouds, and every eye will see it; and all peoples on earth will mourn because of the Ende Tymes Festival. So shall it be! Amen.” And so this prophecy shall be fulfilled, once again, for the third time, May 24-26.
But the miraculous advent of Aaron Dilloway, Crank Sturgeon, Work/Death, and countless other noisemakers will require much prayer, conviction, and tithing into the festival’s crowdsourcing fundraiser at IndieGoGo. Thou hast only four days left to contribute and reap the precious swag and benefits of timely responders! Make haste! So that these apostles of harsh sound may be compensated fairly!
Doth thou readers tire of our Biblical humor at every mention of this festival? Then thou art a stick in the mud! Haters doth hate.
• Ende Tymes: http://halfnormal.com/endetymes
• Ende Tymes Fundraiser: http://www.indiegogo.com/projects/ende-tymes-festival-of-noise-and-exper…
There seem to be two schools of thought concerning Royal Trux. One sees Accelerator (Drag City, 1998) as RT’s magnum opus, the long-awaited distillation of the heroin-damaged chaos that marked their earlier work; the other sees it as an album eight years past their prime, a perversely muted affair in comparison to the monomaniacal purity of 1990’s Twin Infinitives.
Regardless of the poison you pick — and don’t be fooled, it’s exactly that — you’re guaranteed a generous helping of hydrochloric substance. Royal Trux could always be counted on to provide an essence of something altogether broken, whole, dead, and alive all at once. Their sound? A nocturnal, Stooges-like mess of broken glass, smog, motor-oil, and frayed nerves. If Twin Infinitives was an exquisite corpse of shattered parts — the result of a monstrous structure collapsed from unbearable perversity — Accelerator was the sound of putting the Humpty Dumpty back together again. In the two records one can find both poles of the Royal Trux spectrum, a sort of diptych of their delightfully grotesque legacy.
Hanging somewhere in the void is everything else the band recorded, which includes 98’s 3-Song EP. After Accelerator’s unexpectedly warm reception, a tour was soon scheduled. This entailed assembling a full-fledged band, one made up of many Drag City players, most notably bassist David Pajo. After arriving at Royal Trux’s Virginia ranch for rehearsal, the newly formed band was hurriedly prepared for the recording of a new EP. The end result was the 3-Song EP, a relatively straightforward, proggy, and low-end heavy set of songs; which didn’t make them any less intoxicating, mind you. After all, it was still Royal Trux, for fuck’s sake.
The 3-Song EP has been rather difficult to track down as of late, being out of print for almost a decade. But! Drag City (swooping in to save the day) has been unearthing the Royal Trux archive piece by piece, and the next step will be reissuing the 3-Song EP on June 18.
And if you don’t already own the first few albums (as well as Accelerator) don’t worry, everything is going to be okay; you can still rectify your impoverished situation by picking them up at the Drag City store.
• Drag City: http://www.dragcity.com
Flying Lotus releases his newsworthy bowels: a jazz album, Brainfeeder compilation, and Captain Murphy tape are all in the works
So clear is the influence that when Flying Lotus says he’s on his “jazz shit,” and that he’s currently “doing a lot of jazz stuff,” the inclination is to sarcastically respond, “Well nooooooooooooooooo kidding,” acknowledging that his previous three albums were noticeably tinged by the genre, and of course, that he’s a relation of the Coltrane family. For a filmic analogy, it’d be like if director Michael Bay elucidated as to his “explosion” plans, and talked about how he’s currently “doing a lot of explosions.” Bay would then release his personal, feature-length version of the Robot Chicken parody, and everyone would be slightly relieved at this final and total indulgence of what is so clearly his obsession.
On a much more refined note, and expanding on now-confirmed
Right now, I’m on my jazz shit, man. I’m doing a lot of jazz stuff. We’re trying to make something that’s kind of a geek album. There are crazy time signatures and really intense playing, just because we want to go there. We want to play really fast. It’s gonna be fun, man… At the moment, there’s a lot of people involved.
No, please, elevate my interest even further, Mr. Ellison.
There’s also a Brainfeeder compilation in the works, celebrating five years since the label’s inception, and a tape from Captain Murphy (Ellison’s rapping persona), featuring beats from Madlib, Hudson Mohawke, and Jeremiah Jae. Additionally, Apocalypse from Thundercat, which was produced by Flying Lotus, will be released on July 9. All of this looking forward can’t be good for the neck…
Jim Jarmusch starts his own music project SQÜRL, readies debut EP for ATP, because suck it David Lynch!
I guess I don’t really know from firsthand experience, but if I had to smoke a bunch of weed and start monologue-ing about it at the top of a news story in order to pad it out a little (stop twsting my arm, readers!), I’d guess that one probably don’t end up being a film director/actor/writer/editor/etc. for 30+ years without getting the itch to score a film project or two with some sounds that you’re already hearing in your genius-y, grey-haired head. Besides: video takes up a LOT more space on a computer than audio does… so SOLID ASS LOGIC would dictate that making music must be like, 70% easier than making movies. Eh? Right? Right!
Anyway, so yeah, let’s all assume that what I’ve outlined above comprises the reasons why Jim Jarmusch — along with Carter Logan and Shane Stoneback — is starting a new project called SQÜRL and releasing a debut EP on May 20 courtesy of ATP (a festival for whom he’s already totally coincidentally also making an appearance at this summer) on “deluxe limited edition 12-inch Picture Disc vinyl with download (limited to 1000 hand-numbered copies), and digital download,” according to the band’s press release. Because heck, the only other motivations I could think of for the project would be to try and get in a crazier-names-for-things-contest with David Lynch. And I don’t really want that to be the reason. Do you?
Heck, I’m sure that press release will back me up here, won’t it? Let’s see… ah, here we go:
SQÜRL began in 2009 when Jim and Carter teamed with producer/engineer Shane to record some original music for the film THE LIMITS OF CONTROL. Echoing the varied Spanish landscapes captured in the film, the three emerged with a set of slow-motion psychedelic rock’n’roll songs (releasing them as Bad Rabbit).
Following these scoring sessions Jim, Shane, and Carter continued to record new originals while also exploring the back-alleys of American country, noise, and psychedelia. Now having changed their name to SQÜRL the group has readied a series of EPs of these songs, recorded over a 3 year period by Shane at Treefort Recording in Brooklyn, NY.
Ha, see? Makes perfect sense. Check out the first track below, and for god’s sake, stop making all this harder than it needs to be!
SQÜRL EP tracklisting:
01. Pink Dust
02. Dead Naked Hippies
03. Little Sister
04. Some Feedback For Jozef Van Wissem
From Mercury News:
Authorities in Georgia say Chris Kelly, a member of the 90s rap duo Kriss Cross, has died in Atlanta.
Investigator Betty Honey of the Fulton County Medical Examiner’s office said the 34-year-old Kelley was pronounced dead around 5 p.m. Wednesday at the south campus of the Atlanta Medical Center.
Honey said authorities are unsure of Kelly’s cause of death and that an autopsy has yet to be performed.
Kelly, known as “Mac Daddy” performed alongside Chris Smith, known as “Daddy Mac,” in the early and mid-90s. The duo might be best remembered for the song “Jump” from their 1992 debut album, “Totally Krossed Out.”
• Kriss Kross: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kris_Kross
Pere Ubu’s weirdness is seemingly eternal. I mean, David Thomas’ monster has been a continuous presence in music since the mid-70s. Every time I see that they’ve come out with something new, like this year’s Lady From Shanghai on Fire Records (TMT Review), it’s a bit like the sun rising again each morning; comforting and expected.
I would say it’s surprising to hear that they’re touring again, but with their massive back catalogue and their previously stated hyper-activity it’s more like an expected present that is exactly what you wanted. At the very least, Pere Ubu is never boring, so seeing them live is a pretty safe bet. Maybe it won’t just be a “normal” show and they’ll do something like their soundtrack to It Came from Outer Space. Not terribly likely, as this is one band that tends not to do repeat performances, but something equally cool may be just around the corner. I mean, their first show of this run is at the same festival as Pharmakon, Spiritualized, and John Cale; anything can happen. The Ubu Projex “corporate slogan” is, after all, “Art is forever, the audience comes and goes.”
Pere Ubu fall tour:
09.06.13 - Raleigh, NC - Hopscotch Music Festival
09.07.13 - Atlanta, GA - The Earl
09.08.13 - Nashville, TN - Mercy Lounge
09.10.13 - Washington, DC - Rock And Roll Hotel
09.11.13 - Philadelphia, PA - North Star Bar
09.12.13 - New York, NY - Bowery Ballroom
09.13.13 - Providence, RI - Fete Lounge
09.14.13 - Allston, MA - Brighton Music Hall
09.15.13 - South Burlington, VT - Higher Ground Lounge
09.16.13 - Ottawa, ON - Maverick’s
09.17.13 - Montreal, QC - Le Cabaret du Mile End
09.18.13 - Toronto, ON - Lee’s Palace
09.19.13 - Cleveland, OH - Beachland Ballroom
09.20.13 - Detroit, MI - Trinosophes
09.21.13 - Chicago, IL - The Empty Bottle