Friday, May 24th, 2013
An introduction to Field Mouse
Shervin LainezIf it were as recently as last year, I would be spending this post – hell, yesterday’s post – talking about how after arriving in Chicago last Saturday, I went almost straight to Beat Kitchen to see Laura Stevenson and Field Mouse play, on account of missing the Toronto show of their tour this past Tuesday because of this little vacation. But because I’ve grown as a person and am no longer spending all my time and energy trying to make it to shows and write about them, I have nothing to say about that show because I didn’t make it anywhere near the club, though I can’t say that I didn’t look up where it was and write it in my calendar. Just in case.
But that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t make the acquaintance of either of the acts. Stevenson I wrote about way in August 2010 – her new album Wheel is plenty solid, by the way, fans of country-pop would do well to check it out – but Brooklyn duo Field Mouse have had but a passing mention here, and I’d like to give them a little bit more because if your musical tastes align with mine – and why would you be here otherwise – they’re worth a listen.
Their name brings to mind – or is maybe confused for – English twee-pop forebears Field Mice, but while there are some points of intersection, particularly in their facility with melody and dreamy texture, the singular edition of Rachel Browne (vocals, guitar) and Andrew Futral (guitars) is much less navel-gazing and their shoegazey roots give their sound some wonderfully shimmering bite without overwhelming their tunefulness. It’s a formula that’s all about balance, and Field Mouse get it right. With a discography limited to just a few singles right now, they’re prepping their full-length debut for release later this year and have released a new video – presumably from said full-length – via Spin and recorded a video session for BrooklynVegan; as always, don’t read the comments. But do, however, hope they keep touring and make their way back to town soon, ideally when I’m also in town.
MP3: Field Mouse – “Tomorrow Is Yesterday”
MP3: Field Mouse – “Glass”
Stream: Field Mouse – “You Guys Are Gonna Wake Up My Mom”
Stream: Field Mouse – “Happy”
Video: Field Mouse – “Revenge Is Yesterday”
WNYC has a stream of one of the new Savoir Adore songs that will appear on the wide-release edition of their latest Our Nature when it comes out on June 4.
Stream: Savoir Adore – “Beating Hearts
Pitchfork has rightly devoted one of their fancily-presented cover story in-depth features to The National, and The Irish Times, The Hollywood Reporter, and 680 News also have features. They play Yonge-Dundas Square for NXNE on June 14.
Spin has premiered a new song from Florida’s Beach Day, whose debut Trip Trap Attack is out June 18 and who are here for NXNE on June 15 with a show at Handlebar in Kensington Market. DIY has a feature.
Stream: Beach Day – “Stay”
Exclaim has details on the new full-length from Crocodiles; Crimes of Passion is out August 20 and there’s a first track to hear courtesy of Stereogum. They’ll preview the album at the Adelaide Music Hall on June 17 when they support Japandroids.
MP3: Crocodiles – “Cockroach”
Chicago talks to Smith Westerns, who are streaming another new song from their forthcoming Soft Will. It’s out June 25 and they play Lee’s Palace on July 29.
Stream: Smith Westerns – “3AM Spiritual”
She & Him keep up the cutesy on the new video from Volume 3. They headline the first night of the Toronto Urban Roots Fest at Garrison Commons on July 4.
Video: She & Him – “I Could’ve Been Your Girl”
Beatroute and The Georgia Straight have interviews and NPR a session with Yo La Tengo, playing the final day of TURF at Garrison Commons on July 7. DIY also has an interview with bassist James McNew about the reissue series for his Dump side-project.
Loud & Quiet and The Fly have features on Kurt Vile, also here for TURF day four at Garrison Common on July 7.
Merge has announced a deluxe reissue of the last, great lo-fi Mountain Goats album All Hail West Texas on July 23, which is great new if for no other reason as it gives these imaginary liner notes by comics scribe a reason to exist, if only online.
Because he never needs to rest, Ty Segall has announced an August 20 release of his next album, entitled Sleeper. Details on the release at Consequence Of Sound, trailer below.
Trailer: Ty Segall / Sleeper
Pitchfork has details on the new record from The Dodos, entitled Carrier and out August 27.
Stream: The Dodos – “Confidence”
Noisey talks to Jack Tatum of Wild Nothing, who have a date at The Kool Haus on September 21 supporting Local Natives.
The Journal News chats with Sam Beam of Iron & Wine, in town at The Sound Academy on September 28.
Kevin Barnes talks to Rolling Stone about the next of Montreal record Lousy with Sylvianbriar, due out sometime this Fall.
Jim James tells Rolling Stone that My Morning Jacket plan to return to the studio to record their next record in October.
Rolling Stone Q&As Thurston Moore of Chelsea Light Moving, who’ve released a new video from their self-titled debut.
Video: Chelsea Light Moving – “Lip”
The 405 talks to Jon Ehrens and eMusic and City Paper to Jenn Wasner, who together are Dungeonesse.
The Cleveland Plain Dealer has an interview and Rolling Stone an acoustic video session with The Thermals, who’ve just released a video for the decidedly non-acoustic new single from their latest, Desperate Ground.
Video: The Thermals – “The Sunset”
Spin has an oral history of The Breeders’ Last Splash on the occasion of the record’s 20th anniversary.
And Mike Mills uses the occasion of the Green quarter-century reissue to tell Rolling Stone that when R.E.M. said no reunion, they meant no reunion. So no reunion.
Thursday, May 23rd, 2013
I am back in town. Chairlift are coming to town. Coincidence? Absolutely.
Tom HinesSo Chicago was great, thanks for asking. Terrible weather forecasts came not to pass, though storms yesterday did wreak a little havoc on getting out of town. But that’s neither here nor there, and I am now here, not there. And here is a very short post to confirm that I am, indeed, still alive.
It’s not entirely clear to me what the mandate of the Soundclash festival coming to Harbourfront Centre in July is, but at least part of it is to bring Brooklyn electro-pop duo Chairlift to town for a free show on the Harbourfront mainstage on July 12 – I only realized I really dug their last album Something after they’d finished touring it – so it’s cool with me. That’s in addition to the Born Ruffians and Belle Game bill on the evening of the 13th, so if there’s a better place to hang out that weekend than on the lakefront, I can’t imagine what it is.
MP3: Chairlift – “I Belong In Your Arms”
If you didn’t know, the NXNE schedule is now live and should be your go-to for updates on who’s playing the festival, which kicks off June 12. One of the new adds worth noting is California’s We Are Scientists, who will anchor the Lee’s Palace lineup on June 14 and play Yonge-Dundas Square on June 15 at 4PM. Their last album was 2010′s Barbara but should be due a new record later this year.
MP3: We Are Scientists – “Impatience”
When you’re talking about Björk, some degree of strange is always implied, but that Californian experimental hip-hop outfit Death Grips will be opening for her at Echo Beach on July 16 is extra strange. Well, not when you consider Zach Hill and Björk are chums and collaborators, but musically? There’ll be some confused Björk super-fans up front that night, I wager.
MP3: Death Grips – “Spread Eagle Cross The Block”
The CNE circuit is usually reserved for family-friendly, throwback nostalgia acts, but it appears that The New Pornographers will be one of the performers at this year’s Ex, presumably playing the Bandshell on August 17. Shows are free with admission to the Exhibition.
MP3: The New Pornographers – “The Laws Have Changed”
Whilst on the topic of free (or free with admission) outdoor shows around the city, Plants & Animals and Cadence Weapon will be part of the Indie Fridays concert series at Yonge-Dundas Square on the evenings of August 23 and August 30, respectively.
MP3: Plants & Animals – “Song For Love”
MP3: Cadence Weapon – “Conditioning”
Because he doesn’t give a damn what you or anyone else thinks, Peter Hook and his band The Light will be in town on September 19 as part of his tour of complete album recitals of New Order’s Movement and Power, Corruption & Lies. It is worth noting, however, that The Hoxton is a good deal smaller than The Phoenix, where he first performed Unknown Pleasures in Fall of 2011. Tickets are $18 in advance, which isn’t bad to see a legend up close and personal.
Trailer: Peter Hook & The Light / Movement and Power, Corruption & Lies live
Brooklyn-based electronic/ambient artist Julianna Barwick will release her new album Nepenthe on August 20 and be in town at Double Double Land on September 26 to play songs from it.
MP3: Julianna Barwick – “Never Change”
Trailer: Julianna Barwick / Nepenthe
Laura Marling talks to Interview, The Age, NOW, and Spin about her new album Once I Was An Eagle, out next Tuesday, May 28, and streaming now at NPR. She plays 99 Sudbury this Saturday night, March 25.
Stream: Laura Marling / Once I Was An Eagle
The National released Trouble Will Find Me this week, and are thus the topic of feature pieces at The Grid – who send Hayden to interview Matt Berninger – as well as The Toronto Sun, Entertainment Weekly, Consequence Of Sound, Billboard, NPR, and The National Post. NPR also has a World Cafe session with the band, who headline NXNE at Yonge-Dundas Square on June 14.
Okay I’m going to go lie down now.
Saturday, May 18th, 2013
Frank YangWho: Laura Marling
What: English folk artist whose prodigious talent is dwarfed only by her prolific output; Once I Was An Eagle will be her fourth album in just over five years, and she’s barely 23 years old.
Why: Eagle is out May 28, but Marling is kicking off her North American tour behind it a full ten days earlier. In fact, it’s on right now.
When: Saturday, May 25, 2013
Where: 99 Sudbury in Toronto (19+)
How: Tickets for the show are $25 in advance but courtesy of LiveNation, I’ve got two pairs of passes to give away for the show. To enter, email me at contests AT chromewaves.net with “I want to see Laura Marling” in the subject line and your full name in the body, and have that to me by midnight, May 22.
What else: The San Francisco Examiner and The Irish Times have interviews with Marling, The LabTV puts her and Eddie Berman in a room and make them cover Bruce Springsteen, and another new track from the new album is available to stream.
Stream: Laura Marling – “Once”
Stream: Laura Marling – “Where Can I Go?”
Video: Laura Marling – “Master Hunter”
Friday, May 17th, 2013
This is the new Club 8 record and now I am on holiday
Kjell B PerssonKnow what the worst thing about not going to SXSW this Spring was? Not missing SXSW, but not having my previously annual late-Winter vacation. In fact, save for a weekend jaunt to New York last November, the last time I got out of the 416 was Labour Day – that’s well over eight months ago, and right mental. And while I’d like to say that the European theme of this post is a hint as to where I’m getting away to, it unfortunately is not. I still hope to make it across the Atlantic later this Summer – who wants to go to Stockholm? – but for now, an extra-long weekend getaway to Chicago is going to have to scratch my “get out of EDT” itch. I’ll check back in before next week’s end, but we be going dark for a bit after this. Or after tomorrow, because I have a quick contest to put up. Anyways.
To keep you company – and to build up the Swedish travel karma – you can now stream in whole Above The City, the new near-perfect blend of dancefloor beats and indie-pop moping from Swede-pop veterans Club 8, which is officially out on May 21. And to go along with the stream, the Johan Angergård half of the band talks to Billboard about his and Karolina Komstedt’s first record in three years, the status of his other project The Legends, and what’s coming next from his label Labrador, and over at DIY he offers a track-by-track walkthrough of the record.
Stream: Club 8 / Above The City
With their debut album No One Dances Quite Like My Brothers out now, Copenhagen’s Vår have posted the thing up at Pitchfork for your streaming pleasure.
Stream: Vår / No One Dances Quite Like My Brothers
The Vancouver Sun and The Province interview Icelandic ambassadors Of Monsters & Men, in town at Echo Beach for CBCMusic.ca Fest at Echo Beach on May 25.
Camera Obscura have made another new track from their forthcoming Desire Lines available to stream. The record is out June 4 and they play Garrison Commons for TURF on July 4.
Stream: Camera Obscura – “Fifth In Line To The Throne”
Russell Lissack talks to The Miami New times about new music that Bloc Party might be releasing later this Summer. They play the Arts & Crafts Field Trip fest at Garrison Commons on June 8.
Though of small comfort to those of us who missed out on seeing it in person thanks to the illness that tanked their show during CMF, 4AD has announced they will release a live Efterklang album recorded in Fall 2012 with the Copenhagen Philharmonic. The Piramida Concert will be available as a digital download and vinyl package and be out June 10.
Stream: Efterklang – “The Living Layer + Vælv” (live)
Jónsi þór Birgisson gives Premier Guitar a guided tour of his live guitar rig with Sigur Rós. Their new record Kveikur is out June 18, and they’re on The Simpsons this Sunday night.
Stereogum talks to Bobby Gillespie of Primal Scream, whose new album More Light is out in North America on June 18.
The Los Angeles Times reports that former Belle & Sebastian bassist Stuart David will be writing his memoirs about his time in the band, which started from its very inception – he founded it with Stuart Murdoch in 1996 – through his departure following Fold Your Hands Child, You Walk Like A Peasant in 2000.
aux.tv has a feature-length interview and NPR a video session with Savages, coming to town for a show at The Mod Club on July 16.
Billboard and USA Today check in with the ladies of Icona Pop, coming to town as part of the Grove Fest lineup at Garrison Common on August 3.
Franz Ferdinand have announced the August 27 release of their fourth record, Right Thoughts, Right Words, Right Action; The Line Of Best Fit has details and Domino has an album trailer, but the important thing is it’s only three more months until people can complain that the new record isn’t as good as their first.
Trailer: Franz Ferdinand / Right Thoughts, Right Words Right Action
Dreamy English folk-pop purveyors Lanterns On The Lake aren’t offering any specifics on their second album besides that it’ll be out later this year, but they have released a first video from it.
Video: Lanterns On The Lake – “Another Tale From Another English Town”
Melody’s Echo Chamber have a new video from last year’s self-titled debut.
Video: Melody’s Echo Chamber – “Some Time Alone, Alone”
The Quietus gets an interview with The Knife.
The Independent profiles Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds.
The Line Of Best Fit grabs Neil Halstead for a video session.
The Line Of Best Fit interviews British Sea Power.
The Province, Seattle Weekly, and The San Francisco Examiner interview Kate Nash.
Thursday, May 16th, 2013
Majical Cloudz streams debut Impersonator; has no use for your so-called “spelling”
Denis NazarovThough at least some of his current profile comes from being associated with the same Montreal scene that produced Grimes, those expecting more electro-pop cotton candy from Devon Welsh of Majical Cloudz had best adjust their expectations. His full-length debut Impersonator is electronic, yes, but is also spare, haunting, and unflinchingly emotional, circling heavy lyrical topics like death and desire. One would expect that at the Matador company picnic, he’ll be keeping more company with Mike Hadreas of Perfume Genius than, say, Belle & Sebastian’s Stuart Murdoch.
Even so, Impersonator is one of the more eagerly-anticipated debut records coming out of Canada this year, and with its May 21 release date almost upon us, it’s time for an advance stream of the record courtesy of Pitchfork. There’s also interviews with Welsh at Stereogum and Flavorwire, and while the venue is still TBA, he’ll be one of the bigger draws at NXNE on June 15. Update: It’s BLK BOX underneath The Great Hall.
MP3: Majical Cloudz – “Bugs Don’t Buzz”
MP3: Majical Cloudz – “Childhood’s End”
MP3: Majical Cloudz – “Turns Turns Turns”
Stream: Majical Cloudz / Impersonator
And a few noteworthy album streams originating from right here in Toronto: Exclaim is streaming the self-titled debut from glam/New Wave outfit Decades, though they should technically be called “Decade” since the only one that matters to them is the ’80s. The record came out this week and they play a record release show for it at The Garrison tonight, May 16.
Stream: Decades / Decades
Hooded Fang are streaming their new record Gravez over at Hype Machine ahead of its May 28 release date. They play a hometown record release show for it at The Horseshoe on May 31.
Stream: Hooded Fang / Gravez
Local country-pop newcomers Beams have made their debut album Just Rivers available to both buy and stream. There’s a video session with the band at Exclaim and they’ll be at The Central on June 14 for NXNE.
Stream: Beams / Just Rivers
Exclaim and NOW find out what METZ are up to, besides making a triumphant homecoming at Lee’s Palace tomorrow night, May 17; expect a new song and video sooner rather than later.
Young Galaxy have released another new video from Ultramarine. They’re at Lee’s Palace on May 31.
Video: Young Galaxy – “Fall For You”
Daytrotter welcomes Hayden for a session. He’s at Field Trip at Garrison Commons on June 8.
Noisey has a video session with Stars, also partaking in Field Trip on June 8.
With their debut album Beyond Wilderness out as of this week, Vancouver’s Gold & Youth have released a new video from it and are the subject of feature pieces at Exclaim, The Georgia Straight, and The Vancouver Sun. They play the Arts & Crafts Field Trip fest at Garrison Commons on June 8 and will stick around town to play a NXNE showcase at BLK BOX on June 14.
Video: Gold & Youth – “Jewel”
The Dumbing Of America has an interview with No Joy, who are back in town at BLK BOX on June 13 for NXNE.
Stereogum talks to Katie Stelmanis of Austra, whose second album Olympia is out June 18.
Diana are poised to become Toronto’s next great synth-pop export, having signed a deal with Paper Bag Records and Jagjaguwar for the August 20 release of their self-titled debut. Exclaim has details and a new video from the record. All of this is very exciting, of course, but sadly probably means that we won’t be seeing anything anytime soon from frontwoman Carmen Elle’s Army Girls. Alas. Diana have a June 13 showcase at The Horseshoe for NXNE and will support Tegan & Sara and fun. at Downsview Park on July 6.
Video: Diana – “Born Again”
It sounds as though The Hidden Cameras will release a new record this Fall under the title of Age.
Exclaim and The Verge talk to Jim Guthrie about his years in the making yet totally worth the wait new record, Takes Time.
Exclaim has an interview with The Besnard Lakes. Frontman Jace Lasek also details his dream band lineup for The Independent.
Beatroute and Austinist interview Suuns.
Stephen McBean talks to Exclaim about what’s coming next from his Pink Mountaintops project.