ACL Fest Hosts Online BOTB; Relive High School, Vote Now, Vote Often

High school was the best. You could figure out someone’s personality just by looking at them; girls with belly rings were easy, guys who did musicals were gay, fat chicks could never make cheerleading, and kids in bands were smelly burnouts. It was a simple, easy time when trans fats were legal and status was ascribed.

And remember your high school’s battle of the bands? Longhaired Cobain-wannabes, sexually confused folkstresses, soccer players in eyeliner, and Zeppelin cover bands all competed for BOTB champion, the rocker’s equivalent of prom queen (minus a tiara and plus a double kick pedal).

You may have graduated from your teenage stereotype, but for those smelly burnouts with guitars, high school really doesn’t ever end. Take, for instance, Austin City Limits Festival’s online band competition, “The Sound and the Jury.” Texan bands and global groups will be vying for votes to play ACL Fest late this September, along with internationally recognized artists like The Mars Volta, David Byrne, Beck, and Foo Fighters.

Sure as hell beats the $100 music store gift certificate that 1st place bands won at my school’s BOTB. Plus, it won’t be in a high school gym; it’ll be on a massive stage. Not to mention that The Sound and the Jury is sponsored by Dell computers instead of the local Boys’ Club. Or that over 600 bands will compete instead of, like, ten. And voting happens online, not by a good ol’ show of hands. But the sentiment’s still there, and maybe if you vote for one of the awesome artists it’ll make up for that time in high school you called me -- er, one of those grungy rockers -- an angst-ridden lesbian.

of Montreal Announce Tourdates; Skeletal Lamping Cover Features a Cartoon of My Hairdresser Naked; Let’s Go Outback Tonight

I’m pretty pumped about of Montreal (yes, we've decided to go with the "official" way of presenting their name) heading out on tour. Not because they are coming to my town, but because they are from my town, and I get a vay-cay from those asses for about two months. Suh-weet! Just kidding, they’re awesome kids.

The band is heading over to Europe in early August for a few festival dates, followed by a small European tour in October and about of month of U.S. dates. The band is doing all this mess to promote their new album Skeletal Lamping, due on Polyvinyl October 7 (TMT News). The cover features some naked people, one of which I recognized as the dude who cuts my hair. I’m pretty sure it’s him. It looks exactly like him, and he’s friends with the band. I don’t know those other nudies.

Skeletal Lamping tracklist:

^ Sinkane

* HEALTH

July 17 to July 19 marks the days of the difficult-to-pronounce Slottsfjell Festival in Tønsberg, Norway. I have no idea how to say that name, but I do know how to say the names of most the bands that are playing... except for Ólöf Arnalds, but it doesn’t seem too hard. I can say Fuck Buttons. I say fuck a lot, though.

Slottsfjell Festival features a healthy mix of hype-y bullshit indie rock bands and Scandinavian bands. The lineup includes Stereolab, The Little Ones, Gogol Bordello, Fuck Buttons, Cadence Weapon, Annie, Lukestar, Ida Maria, Woven Hand, The Floor Is Made Of Lava, and tons more. But don’t worry kids... there will also be death metal. I mean, if you’re in fucking Norway, you better hear some metal, right? Hopefully everyone looks like Rob Darken from Graveland (yeah, I know he’s Polish):

The festival is held in the medieval ruins of the city of Tønsberg. I did a Google image search of Tønsberg, and it looks pretty amazing. Information on where to sleep, where to eat lutefisk, and how to get around the city are posted on the festival website, which is available in English -- sorta.

Broken Social Scene Whore Themselves Out Once More with Tour

Sometimes I like to think that Kevin Drew, ringleader of Broken Social Scene (BSS to cool people), was ostracized from clubs and scenes as a youth. I picture that Simpsons episode where Homer wasn't allowed into the secret "No Homers Club" ("But you let in Homer Glumplich!"). Perhaps as a subconscious revenge, Drew has developed his own keen pecking order upon U.S. citizens: If you're not American, you're not allowed in. Bullcock! Drew has spoken out against our beloved President Bush for the last time! Ironically enough, the so-called Broken Social Scene have been quickly dissipating away from their most famed collaborators, including Feist, Emily Haines, and Amy Millan. Now this group of Canadian hooligans is beginning to look more like the Buena Vista Social Club.

The band will be touring with a collage of previous material and supporting the latest Broken Social Scene presents... Blah, Blah, Blaaaaaah. Actually, the album is Brendan Canning's Something for All of Us, due July 22. But really, this article is a call out to everyone fed up with "exclusive scenes": pay the $475 to see BSS (I'm cool now) at Lollapalooza, sneak up onstage while Drew collapses over a tired drunken tirade spiel before the encore, and commence in playing with the band to show just how badass us Americans can truly be. Do it naked or don't do it all.

You can't fix what was always broken:

* Yeasayer

Comcast Ordered to Stop Interfering with BitTorrent Traffic, Faces FCC Sanctions

Comcast, like many internet service providers, has been accused by consumer groups and press sources of interfering with customers' connections in order to block peer-to-peer traffic and disconnect BitTorrent seeds. Yet after months of denials and false promises, as well as an FCC investigation that began in January, the nation's largest cable company has been ordered by the Federal Communications Commission to stop throttling its users' traffic.

On Friday, the Associated Press reported that FCC chairman Kevin Martin will not only demand that Comcast cease its interference, but also plans to recommend FCC sanctions against the company. While the punishment will not include a fine, it will stipulate that Comcast disclose where and when it interfered with traffic in the past and announce full details of its new "protocol agnostic" traffic management plan, which will ostensibly try to control all Comcast traffic as opposed to focusing on peer-to-peer networks. Martin explained that the relatively light punishment was designed "to try to clarify what is allowed and what isn't."

The decision has been claimed as a victory by some involved in the net-neutrality movement. According to TorrentFreak, Free Press lawyer Marvin Ammori declared, "This is an historic test for whether the law will protect the open Internet. If the commission decisively rules against Comcast, it will be a remarkable victory for organized people over organized money." Martin (a Bush appointee, surprisingly enough) echoed the broad, broad political significance of this policy announcement in an interview with The New York Times, saying "The Internet is based upon the idea that consumers can go anywhere they want and access any content they want."

Comcast Ordered to Stop Interfering with BitTorrent Traffic, Faces FCC Sanctions

Comcast, like many internet service providers, has been accused by consumer groups and press sources of interfering with customers' connections in order to block peer-to-peer traffic and disconnect BitTorrent seeds. Yet after months of denials and false promises, as well as an FCC investigation that began in January, the nation's largest cable company has been ordered by the Federal Communications Commission to stop throttling its users' traffic.

On Friday, the Associated Press reported that FCC chairman Kevin Martin will not only demand that Comcast cease its interference, but also plans to recommend FCC sanctions against the company. While the punishment will not include a fine, it will stipulate that Comcast disclose where and when it interfered with traffic in the past and announce full details of its new "protocol agnostic" traffic management plan, which will ostensibly try to control all Comcast traffic as opposed to focusing on peer-to-peer networks. Martin explained that the relatively light punishment was designed "to try to clarify what is allowed and what isn't."

The decision has been claimed as a victory by some involved in the net-neutrality movement. According to TorrentFreak, Free Press lawyer Marvin Ammori declared, "This is an historic test for whether the law will protect the open Internet. If the commission decisively rules against Comcast, it will be a remarkable victory for organized people over organized money." Martin (a Bush appointee, surprisingly enough) echoed the broad, broad political significance of this policy announcement in an interview with The New York Times, saying "The Internet is based upon the idea that consumers can go anywhere they want and access any content they want."

When Bodies of Water’s Ears Will Pop & Eyes Will Blink was released independently on the band’s own 1000 Tongues imprint it was rightfully met with rabid acclaim. Before long, Secretly Canadian got wise and jumped in to sign the band, resulting in a redistribution of said debut album and the discharge of forthcoming sure-to-be-super-duper new album A Certain Feeling on July 22. We are not into referencing but there may be reason for being excited; any PR gush that name-drops Upsetters, Steve Reich, ESG, Velvets, an imaginary Morricone/Spector score collaboration, Wagner, Sabbath, musique concrète, and five-time tropicalia has to be good. After hearing the album, we have to admit that all of the above is true but the label forgot to mention Starship, the Like Mike soundtrack, new rave, Chris de Burgh's "Lady in Red," a Gap commercial song montage, B.O.C., "The Bartman," grime, and "Jingle Cats." Believe the hype!

I've got a certain feeling that this is the song list for A Certain Feeling. I also have a certain feeling that that line you just read sucked.

1. Gold, Tan, Peach, and Grey
2. Under the Pines
3. Only You
4. Water Here
5. Keep Me On
6. Darling, Be Here
7. Even in a Cave
8. If I Were a Bell
9. The Mud Gapes Open

Regardless of any possible metamorphoses Bodies of Water may have undergone from first to second record, or will undergo from song to song, the band will assuredly still be a live spectacle of the highest order, with members perched on the stage full-throatingly testifyin' and singing pop psalms as only they can. Their next clump of dates is bookended by two dates in Bodies of Water's hometown, Los Angeles, where the spectacularly overpaid and underproducing superstar Andruw Jones plays Major League Baseball (that %$#&ing bum! -- Dodger fan)

07.17.08 - Los Angeles, CA - Echo #
08.06.08 - Madison, Wisconsin - Café Montmartre $
08.07.08 - Chicago, Illinois - Schubas $
08.08.08 - Cleveland, OH - The Grog Shop %
08.09.08 - Toronto, Ontario - El Mocambo $
08.10.08 - Montréal, Quebec - Le Divan Orange $
08.12.08 - Cambridge, MA - The Middle East Upstairs $
08.13.08 - New York, NY - Mercury Lounge $
08.15.08 - Brooklyn, NY - Union Hall $
08.16.08 - Philadelphia, PA - Johnny Brenda’s $
08.17.08 - Washington, DC - Black Cat Backstage $
08.18.08 - Columbus, OH - Café Bourbon St. Annex $
08.19.08 - Indianapolis, IN - Locals Only $
08.23.08 - Los Angeles, CA - Sunset Junction Street Festival
09.02.08 - Vancouver, British Columbia - The Media Club ^
09.03.08 - Seattle, WA - Chop Suey ^
09.04.08 - Portland, OR - Holocene (Musicfest NW) *
09.05.08 - Salem, OR - IKE Box ^
09.07.08 - San Francisco, CA - Bottom of the Hill +
09.08.08 - San Luis Obispo, CA - SLO Art Center +
09.09.08 - San Diego, CA - The Casbah +
09.10.08 - Los Angeles, CA - Echo +

# record release show w/Seasons and The Henry Clay People

$ Port O'Brien

% Parts & Labor and Port O'Brien

^ Karl Blau

* Deerhunter

+ Throw Me the Statue

Oasis Unfurl a Red Velvet Tapestry Containing Tracklist and Title for New LP Written in Solid Gold Thread; That’s How Fancy, Awesome and British Oasis [Still] Is

Just when you thought you were safe from the near-constant barrage of "Britpop" tagged bands being hurled around the world by these the British Press's comically oversized medieval wooden catapults... here comes Oasis again, and they look as determined as ever to make sure that you NEVER forget who The Beatles were. Okay, so you don't think this is all getting a bit predictable? Let’s run down the checklist, shall we?

Two irascible brothers and competing writing forces in Liam and Noel Gallagher? Check. A heady band that won't let you forget for one damn SECOND that "British Music" is supposed to sound THEIR way, Coldplay and their lite-FM-Radiohead stylings be damned!? Check, again. Oh, music that's huge, spacey, lush, cloyingly melodic, "druggy," just a little bit longer song-per-song than it actually needs to be? Check, check, and double check, ladies and gentlemen. They've got it all down!

And, well, why shouldn't they? After all, the boys who won't let us forget that they speak the Queen’s English are now slated to release their seventh studio album in twice as many years. Aaaaand, let's seeeeee... psych-twinged album title? Uh, check. This newest effort, produced by Dave Sardy (who worked with the band last time out on 2005's Don't Believe the Truth), is titled Dig Out Your Soul and is slated for release October 7 in the United States and October 6 worldwide.

Want more proof of Oasis's "Britishness?" Well, lets see, Dig Out was recorded at Abbey Road... umm, oh, and they're releasing it independently (on their own label, Big Brother Recordings, to be exact) just to keep up with the Joneses (Yorkes, Greenwoods, etc.). So, does all of this mean that you are going to "dig" it? Oh come, now, reader. I think we both know that you've already made up your mind on that one.

Dig Out Your Soul tracklist:

Peanut Butter Wolf to Play 8 Shows in 8 days at 8 Clubs, Me to Eat 8 Peanut Butter Sandwiches

Continuing his numerically themed, yearly DJ sets, Peanut Butter Wolf has scheduled eight shows at eight different clubs over eight days, starting August 1 and culminating with a show on August 8. This celebration of the Triple-8-Date follows his Heavy Metal DJ set on 6-6-06 and a Gospel-themed set of seven shows that ended on 7-7-07.

Each one of the eight shows will have a specific theme that PB Wolf illustrates through the use of eight separate styles of music, one for each night, accompanied by music videos from that genre. Wolf promises a good time by hand-picking each venue and guaranteeing that no song or video will be repeated.

To show my support of both Peanut Butter Wolf and the numerically themed events, I will be eating a peanut butter and grape jelly sandwich on each day between the dates of August 1-August 7, culminating in eating eight peanut butter and jelly sandwiches on August 8.

If you’re in the L.A. area around these dates, CHECK OUT THE SHOWS and revel in Peanut Butter Wolf’s DJ abilities:

Stonesthrow.com has released an info line: 1-888-WOLF4LA, call it! Leave a message.

Gang Gang Dance Set to Release New Album, Saint Dymphna, on The Social Registry and Warp

If you’re like me, you like music that’s both haunting and danceable. Something that kind of scares you, but makes you two-step at the same time.

So, if you’re like me, unidentifiable indie-gems Gang Gang Dance will certainly leave you happily flustered on the dance floor. The Brooklyn-based quartet plans to release their fourth LP, Saint Dymphna, October 21, their follow-up to 2005's God's Money (TMT's #4 favorite album of 2005). The new album will be released via The Social Registry in the U.S. and on Warp in the UK.

Known for their experimental approach to rock, electronica, and tribal music, the group has a knack for juxtaposing intricate, bizarre songs with catchy beats. If you take a look at the bands Gang Gang Dance have played with in the past -- Black Dice, Spank Rock, TV on the Radio, Architecture in Helsinki -- you’ll find it easy to see how they fit into the category of “unexplained indie rock.” Oh, just give a listen to their MySpace material, which includes new song “House Jam” remixed by XXXChange.

Gang Gang Dance will embark on a brief U.S. tour of the Northeast at the end of July, hit New York's Central Park SummerStage in August, and will head off to Japan in September.

[Photo: Georg Gatsas]