Tuesday, August 21st, 2012
I've Got Your Music
Saint Etienne to deliver Words & Music in person
Elaine ConstantineThe show was only announced last night, but I’m just going to go ahead and say that I don’t think people are nearly as excited about Saint Etienne’s first show back in Toronto in, if my calculations are correct, in almost a decade. I know this a) because I made note of this in the very salad days of this blog, and b) because I’ve regretted my indifference to that show since I finally wised up to the dance-popping glory of the London trio.
Granted, they met me a little of the way in, what with them moving away from being just a dancefloor concern to a properly brilliant pop band. Of course that’s not really an excuse since that transition started as early as their second album, So Tough, but in my defence for the longest time I only really knew their discotheque-friendly debut Foxbase Alpha and guys, this was in the ’90s when buying imported UK albums was effin’ expensive. Also, my musical tastes were less refined in my twenties; Saint Etienne were far too happy for my tastes. Yeah, I know. I inevitably saw the error of my ways when I picked up a copy of their 1996 Too Young To Die compilation, but that was too late to catch that November 2002 show at The Opera House in support of Finisterre.
So hooray for second chances, even if they’re a while in coming. The band are returning to North America for some dates in support of this year’s Words & Music By Saint Etienne, and it includes an October 24 date at The Mod Club, tickets $28.50. The tour – I don’t have the other dates yet, sorry, but understand it’ll run from October into November so it’s not that short – also coincides with the DVD release of the What Have You Done Today, Mervyn Day? documentary. The 2005 film was written by and featured a soundtrack by the band and examined the Lower Lea Valley area of London, much of which became the site of the 2012 Olympics. A precise date for the release is still forthcoming, but details on it can be had at Pitchfork.
Also a pleasant surprise – less so because he never visits, because he does, but because when the dates for Neil Halstead’s Fall tour were announced, we weren’t on there. Happily that’s been rectified and Neil will be here with songs from his new solo album Palindrome Hunches – out September 11 – and snappy rejoinders to anyone who yells out a Slowdive request. And lest that discourage you from attending, know that he’s generous with forays into the Mojave 3 songbook – so at least there’s that. He’s at The Dakota Tavern on October 8, so if you don’t have plans for Thanksgiving Monday and $22.50 burning a hole in your pocket, you’re all set.
It could have been a hat trick of excellent concert announcements from across the pond yesterday if, say, Richard Hawley announced a jaunt to support the North American release of his latest Standing At The Sky’s Edge – out next week – but no luck. We’ll have to make do with the fact that it no longer costs an arm and a leg for a physical copy and a free MP3 from the record courtesy of Rolling Stone. And also this interview with the man at The Yorkshire Evening Post.
Video: Tender Trap – “Step One”
Frightened Rabbit have released a video for the title track of their new EP, behind which they’re touring North America this Fall. State Hospital is out September 25 and they play The Mod Club on October 10. Forres Gazette chats with frontman Scott Hutchison about the Rabbit’s return.