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Tuesday, April 25th, 2006

Blue By Late

One of the promo companies I get stuff from has the pleasant habit of putting little Reader’s Digest press release stickers on the jewel cases of stuff they send me. This is nice, because it means I don’t have to dig up the full-sheet press release to see if something completely unknown is going to (potentially) turn my crank. So there’s no surprise that when the case for Sorry About The Flowers, the debut from Athens, Georgia’s Venice Is Sinking, declared acts such as Low, Mojave 3 and Galaxie 500 as reference points, the disc went in my short list pile. Even if that’s all PR hyperbole, it’s still a good start.

And while I find those specific comparisons a little tenuous (they’re much less quiet than Low and more orchestrated than G500), they’re not without merit. The best comparison I can come up with are Scotland’s Zephyrs. String-laden and lush, Venice Is Sinking offer a beautifully hazy sort of space-country/folk with an appropriately southern gothic slant to it. Daniel Lawson and Karolyn Troupe’s voices are pure and simple and lovely through nine songs of wistfulness and yearning, while track 10 is a 19-minute “Less Than You Think”-ish sound collage comprised of bits and bobs from the rest of the album. Curiously hypnotic if you’re inclined to pay attention. But if you couldn’t tell, I’m quite taken with this record. I get a lot of unknown stuff sent my way, and a lot of it I find I’m indifferent to – but every once in a while you find something unexpected that makes the whole exercise worthwhile.

I had intended to save this writeup till closer till the album’s wide-release date of June 20, but really wanted to get the word out now. And technically, the record is already out though exclusively from athensmusic.net until the official release date. Since they just recently played a hometown CD release party for the album, the local Athens press has been offering a wealth of features. Check out interviews from Flagpole, Athens Exchange, Creative Loafing and Red & Black. And whaddayaknow – great minds blog alike.

Check out the MP3 below and there’s more MySpace and PureVolume. You can also watch the video for “Pulaski Heights” on their website.

MP3: Venice Is Sinking – “Pulaski Heights”

And speaking of Venice Is Sinking reference points, Mojave 3 have made what appears to be the final mix version of “Big Star Baby” available on their MySpace page. Even though the page is titled “official”, the patchy edit and lack of anything about an official MP3 from 4AD makes me think it’s just someone being extra-enthusiastic with the album leak… but whatever. You’ll recall I linked the demo version last week. Check it out. Puzzles Of You is out June 20.

MP3: Mojave 3 – “Big Star Baby”

Meanwhile The Zephyrs have made the video for “So Called Beau”, taken from their 2005 record Bright Yellow Flowers On A Dark Double Bed, and are sharing it on their website. And if you’re not familiar with the Zephyrs, check out my post from last December.

And finally, whilst on the topic of dreamy sorts of bands, Trespassers William recorded a Morning Becomes Eclectic session for former hometown radio station KCRW last week. In between playing some songs from Having, Anna-Lynne Williams mentioned that they’d be releasing an internet-only EP in the next month or so with some new songs, covers and whatnot. The Los Angeles Times asked the band why they chose to flee the City of Angels for the rainier climes of Seattle.

Pitchfork gets some exclusive interview action from Emily Haines about her piano-driven solo album Knives Don’t Have Your Back, out on September 26.

24: Man, that “Previously on 24” took FOREVER. That cost Jack valuable minutes! You know, Robocop never would have yelled “Damn!” if he ran out of ammo… Everyone who expected Secretary Heller to drive off a cliff, hands up? Liars. Wow, the First Lady is some kinda dumb. It’s like they said, “We have candy for you. In this dark room”. Okay, do all these bad guys have Bluetooth headsets? Are those supposed to be sinister? “We have no wires. Fear us.” Okay, so wait a minute – there was a big-ass explosion at Van Nuys airport less than an hour ago when Jack blew up the fuel truck, and yet they’re still letting this flight, presumably loaded with important British and French diplomatic type people, take off from there, business as usual? Either way, looks like Jack’s going for a ride.

np – The Concretes / In Colour

By : Frank Yang at 8:43 am
Category: Uncategorized
RSS Feed for this post12 Responses.
  1. sp says:

    Venus is Sinking is a nice little band for sure. I guess it was TC that sent you their record, since VIS’s drummer Lucas works there. Nice to see they are putting out a new record.

  2. Eric Grubbs says:

    I recently reviewed Venice is Sinking’s record for Punk Planet. A nice review will appear in issue #74 in a few months.

  3. ed says:

    Hi,

    the mojave3offical webspace is run by Neil, so the page is legit. The version of Big Star Baby is still ‘demo’, but a more advanced version than the one previously released..

    Cheers,
    Ed

  4. Frank says:

    thanks for the clarification, Ed. The MySpace version definitely sounded more "produced", but still didn’t sound quite done to me.

  5. Lucas Jensen says:

    So I guess I’ve been outed, so to speak. This is awesome, Frank. Thanks so much for the support. One quick thing: our violist/singer is Karolyn, not Kelly. All the best,
    Lucas

  6. Frank says:

    Ha! I should have been suspicious when the CD came wrapped in $100 bills. Actually, I had no idea of your extra-cirricular activities, I didn’t read the press release that closely… Either way, it’s a great record. Congrats.

    And sorry about the typo, it’s fixed.

  7. Lucas Jensen says:

    Haha. I wish I had $100s to send. Another typo: I go by Lucas "The Body Electric" Jensen.

  8. ajl says:

    Was this missed?

    Smashing Pumpkins Reunion Is a Go
    Amy Phillips reports:
    "It’s official, the Smashing Pumpkins are currently writing songs for their upcoming album, their first since 2000. No release date has yet been set, but the band plans to begin recording this summer."

    Well, there you have it– the latest update on the Smashing Pumpkins reunion, taken straight from the band’s official website. That’s all. Nothing else to report, sorry!

    No, we don’t know who exactly is in the band now, although we assume it’s some combination involving Billy Corgan and Jimmy Chamberlain, since Billboard.com reported earlier this year that the pair signed a management deal under the Smashing Pumpkins name.

    In related news, last night I was watching Fuse and the "Tonight Tonight" video came on. That video rules.

  9. Frank says:

    missed? no, just ignored. I haven’t cared a whit about Smashing Pumpkins in about 12 years and this "reunion" without James or Darcy/Melissa will be many degrees of pathetic. Mark my words. Alt.rock’s own Chinese Democracy.

  10. sam says:

    Frank! you forgot to mention that 24 is raiding the Robocop casting sheet!!! Paul McCrane, Robocop’s Emil (the melting face dude??), is the number one bad guy with the Bluetooth headset!! love him.

    i was hoping we’d get to see Jack land in London or something but we only have 5 hours left. barely enough to see him land. can he really blast his way out of the cargo hold and into the Secret Security-laden airplane??

  11. Dave says:

    Aquarium Drunkard actually got to them before I did!

    Great band, glad you’re enjoying them as well.

  12. bebek says:

    great review Frank…..Venice is Sinking has got an original sound that is definetely worth checking out.