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Posts Tagged ‘Archers Of Loaf’

Tuesday, July 31st, 2012

We Fold Inside Of Us

Review of The Daredevil Christopher Wright’s The Nature Of Things and giveaway

Photo via File Under: MusicFile Under: MusicPrior to a few years ago, the city of Eau Claire, Wisconsin wasn’t widely known for very much besides being a convenient stopping point between Madison and Minneapolis. That has largely changed, at least amongst certain circles, thanks to the success of favourite son Justin Vernon of Bon Iver who rather than decamp for the bright lights of the big city with the onset of success has instead further entrenched himself in his hometown, building his April Base Studios just outside of the city and helping bring international attention to the city’s music scene which consists largely of friends and collaborators.

The Daredevil Christopher Wright can count themselves amongst them, what with Vernon having worked on their 2009 debut In Deference To A Broken Back and taken the trio on tour with him, but those looking to their just-released second album The Nature Of Things for that sort of forlorn, epic wilderness spirit will only find it partially satisfying. There are traces of that to be found, certainly, but The Daredevil Christopher Wright are more playful in personality, both musically and lyrically, though one can’t help notice a bit more sombreness around the edges than on their debut. Their impressive three-part harmonies might encourage some to draw Fleet Foxes parallels, but their best reference point, at least to these ears, is the throwback folk-rock of Texas’ Midlake, albeit again with more lightness to their approach. Gentle and genteel but delivered with a sly wink, The Nature Of Things is a record that may not strive to be the life of the party but will also never overstay its welcome.

No strangers to Canadian roads – they opened up for Dan Mangan across the country last November – the band are about to embark on a North American tour that brings them through Toronto to the Horseshoe on August 7 en route to the Maritimes before returning back to the US. It’s a free show and an early show – they’re on at 8:40PM – and since I can’t give away passes, I’ll give away albums. Courtesy of Webster Media Consulting, I’ve got four copies of The Nature Of Things to give away – one on vinyl, three on CD – so if you want one, email me at contests@chromewaves.net with “I want The Daredevil Christopher Wright” in the subject line and your full name, mailing address, and preference of LP or CD in the body, and have that in to me before midnight, August 6. And because I don’t get to do this that often, the contest is open to anyone in Canada.

There’s an interview with the band at CBC Music and the stream of the new album posted at Exclaim when it came out last month is still working.

MP3: The Daredevil Christopher Wright – “Divorce”
Stream: The Daredevil Christopher Wright / The Nature Of Things

The Gossip are touring North America in support of their latest album A Joyful Noise, and will be in Toronto at The Phoenix on September 29. Singer Beth Ditto is interviewed over at The Guardian and The Independent.

Video: The Gossip – “Perfect World”
Video: The Gossip – “Move In The Right Direction”

Matt & Kim are also back on the road with a massive tour in support of their new one Lightning; they’ll be at The Phoenix on October 5. Matt Johnson talks to Spin about the new record.

MP3: Matt & Kim – “Let’s Go”

Chicago’s The Sea & Cake are back with a new album in Runner and a tour that brings them to Lee’s Palace on October 18, tickets $16.50. Full dates are available at Pitchfork and a preview of the new record is available below.

MP3: The Sea & Cake – “Harps”

JAM and Altsounds have interviews and Drowned In Sound a video session with Sharon Van Etten; she’s at The Phoenix tonight.

Stereogum talks to Steven McDonald of Redd Kross about Researching The Blues, their really really really excellent new album, out next week. Don’t believe me? Listen for yourself at NPR.

MP3: Redd Kross – “Researching The Blues”
Stream: Redd Kross / Researching The Blues

The Sugar reissues are now out and awesome, and if you’re unconvinced then read the Pitchfork review don’t give me that look for excellent explanations of why. Bob Mould’s next solo album The Silver Age is out September 4.

A second track from Love This Giant, the collaboration between David Byrne and St. Vincent, is now available to stream. The album is out September 11 and the pair are at the Queen Elizabeth Theatre on September 20.

Stream: David Byrne & St. Vincent – “Weekend In The Dust”

Stereogum is streaming a new song from the forthcoming Calexico record Algiers, out September 11. They’ve also got a video of a live performance of the same song.

Stream: Calexico – “Spitter”

Those hoping that those Grandaddy reunion shows and reissues would lead to new material will have to make do with a new Jason Lytle solo record. Dept. Of Disappearance will be out on October 16 and Pitchfork has details and a stream of the title track.

Stream: Jason Lytle – “Dept. Of Disappearance”

October 16 will also be the release date for the long-awaited second album from Savoir Adore. They released the first video from it last month.

Video: Savoir Adore – “Dreamers”

Tobin Spout talks to Rolling Stone about Bears For Lunch, the third Guided By Voices album of 2012 due out in November, and their plans to release a new one every six months or so after that.

Creative Loafing talks to Eric Bachmann of Archers Of Loaf.

The Guardian tries to get into the head of The Flaming Lips’ Wayne Coyne.

NYC Taper has a recording of one of Wilco’s recent New York-area shows available for download.

Wednesday, July 11th, 2012

Until I Am Whole

New album news from (Mountain) Goats, and (Band Of) Horses, and (Grizzly) Bear(s) – oh my!

Photo By DL AndersonD.L. AndersonA veritable deluge of new album information came across the desk in the last day or so, though it could well have been delivered in a box of animal crackers.

First and least expectedly – at least I wasn’t expecting one – is a new Mountain Goats album entitled Transcendental Youth due out on October 2. There’s no sample track yet – not even one of those album trailers that are de rigeur these days – but instead and arguably better are a couple of essays about the album, one by John Darnielle, and another by way of the official bio by John Hodgman.

You can see the full album art over at Exclaim and, as something to listen to and keeping with the animal theme, a track from their 2000 album The Coroner’s Gambit.

MP3: The Mountain Goats – “Baboon”

Having teased that it was coming but not offering much in the way of specifics, Band Of Horses have spilled the beans on album number four, to be entitled Mirage Rock and due out on September 18; it certainly gives some context to their show at Echo Beach on August 15 opening up for My Morning Jacket. Pitchfork has some specifics and the first video from the album is available below.

Video: Band Of Horses – “Knock Knock”

And while Grizzly Bear had gone so far as to not only confirm a release date for their next record – also September 18 – and book a tour – Massey Hall on September 26 – they’d been coy about the actual title of the record until now. It’s going to be called Shields and you can see the album art and track listing over at Gigwise.

MP3: Grizzly Bear – “Sleeping Ute”

And while I’m not a fan, it’d be kind of ridiculous to not note that Animal Collective have a new one entitled Centipede Hz; it’s out September 4 and the first single is available to stream.

Stream: Animal Collective – “Honeycomb”

Ty Segall isn’t named for any kind of animal but he works like a mule; Pitchfork has details on his third album of the year – Twins is out October 9, giving some context to his show with Thee Oh Sees at The Hoxton on September 26.

San Diego garage-poppers The Soft Pack have announced a couple dates at The Garrison on October 9 and 10 as part of a tour in support of their second full-length Strapped, due out September 25. The first single is available to stream.

Stream: The Soft Pack – “Saratoga”

And shifting gears to some more concert announcements: After selling the hell out of Lee’s Palace back in April before their debut Boys & Girls was even out – the show was a week after the release date but every ticket was gone weeks before then – Alabama Shakes are coming back for a gig at the much more spacious Kool Haus on October 2, tickets for that $26.50 in advance. Full Fall dates over at Pollstar.

MP3: Alabama Shakes – “I Found You”
MP3: Alabama Shakes – “You Ain’t Alone”
MP3: Alabama Shakes – “Hold On”

Of all the band hats that he has to choose from, Conor Oberst has decided to hit the road as Conor Oberst for a show at Massey Hall on December 8. Tickets go on sale Friday at 10AM and run from $39.50 to $60.50.

MP3: Conor Oberst – “Danny Callahan”
MP3: Bright Eyes – “Lover I Don’t Have To Love”
MP3: Desaparecidos – “The Happiest Place On Earth”

Major, the second album from Fang Island, is streaming over at NPR ahead of its official release on July 24.

MP3: Fang Island – “Sisterly”
MP3: Fang Island – “Asunder”
Stream: Fang Island / Major

The title track of Matt & Kim’s next album Let’s Go – release date still to be determined – is now available to download.

MP3: Matt & Kim – “Let’s Go”

NPR and The New York Times have interviews with James Murphy, who reveals that LCD Soundsystem may not be quite completely dead just yet. But close. And then, luggage. The LCD doc Shut Up And Play The Hits is back in Toronto for a couple screenings next week at The Bloor Cinema, on July 18 and 19.

As promised, Luna’s seminal 1992 album Bewitched is getting its first-ever pressing on vinyl this Summer. It’s out August 21 and is limited to an edition of 2000, so it’s a good thing you can pre-order it now.

MP3: Luna – “Tiger Lily”

A Heart Is A Spade asks a few quick questions of Peggy from The Pains Of Being Pure At Heart.

The Shins have a new video from Port Of Morrow. They open up for The Black Keys at The Molson Amphitheatre on August 4.

Video: The Shins – “It’s Only Life”

NPR is streaming a World Cafe session with Sharon Van Etten, who’s in town at the Phoenix on July 31.

PopMatters talks to Ira Elliot of Nada Surf.

Rolling Stone and The Boston Globe talk to Mission Of Burma about their new record Unsound, out now and streaming in full at Spinner.

MP3: Mission Of Burma – “Second Television”
Stream: Mission of Burma / Unsound

The Village Voice talks to Eric Bachmann of Archers Of Loaf.

PopMatters interviews Eisley.

Spin has posted their latest cover story on Cali power couple Best Coast and Wavves and thrown in a photo shoot gallery for good measure. Best Coast are at The Phoenix on July 21.

Friday, June 22nd, 2012

Vs The Greatest Of All Time

Archers Of Loaf at The Phoenix in Toronto

Photo By Frank YangFrank YangWhen we left off yesterday, I was biking furiously across town to get from The Rivoli to The Phoenix for Archers Of Loaf. So why not roll this show into the festival coverage? Well, although some wristbands were granted admission and the premiere of the What Did You Expect? live Archers doc was one of the big gets of the NXNE film festival, this show wasn’t technically part of the festival and I am, if nothing else, a stickler for these sorts of things. And having waited this long for the show, delaying it just that much longer seemed appropriate.

Since the Archers reunited in early 2011 and were willing to make it a long-term thing, I’ve been waiting for a local date – a wait exacerbated by the fact that real life commitments for most of the band kept touring restricted to weekends. Hell, Eric Bachmann brought Crooked Fingers through town twice in 2012 without an Archers sighting; certainly not a complaint as I love me some Crooked Fingers, but one couldn’t help wondering if we were being slighted. And of course we weren’t, it just took this long to get the proverbial ducks in a row, and on this night – the busiest night of music in the city in recent memory – it was happening.

And happening early, as it turned out. If they’d stuck to the posted set times there’d have been no problem but as I got into the venue, I could already hear the rumble of “Audiowhore” through the doors. Early? Who goes on early on a Saturday night? Well Archers did, clearly, though only just. The Vs The Greatest Of All Time selection was an unlikely opener, but it segued straight into arguably one of the best songs of the ’90s – “Harnessed In Slums” and we were off. A benefit of still being a sort of cult band was that most everyone in attendance was surely some degree of die hard fan and singles and deep cuts alike would be greeted with roaring enthusiasm, though obviously the likes of college rock classics as “Slums” and “Web In Front” got the mostly middle-aged crowd most rowdy.

After years of seeing Eric Bachmann fronting Crooked Fingers and only offering Archers material via stripped down, Finger-y arrangements, it was astonishing to see him cut loose in full rock fury; he’s a big guy who plays at a sort of gentle giant figure with Crooked Fingers but here, he came out swinging. Despite wanting to distance himself from his old band in the years that it was in mothballs and concentrate on what he was actively working on, it was obvious he was having a blast playing these songs the way they were meant to be played and with the guys he’d written them with. It was great to see, and his bandmates were still having a great time of it as well, even almost a year and a half into their second act. Matt Gentling in particular – who’d incidentally come through town in the Dignity & Shame incarnation of Crooked Fingers in 2005 – was a maniac onstage, striking poses while attacking his bass, contributing vocals, or just bantering with the crowd. Though I’m not sure what his “Sixteen Sixty Four” Maple Leafs-esque shirt was about…

The Archers were loud, tight, and relentless, inciting the audience to behaviour most probably hadn’t engaged in in oh, fifteen years or so, like moshing, stage diving, and crowd surfing though I have to question if it’s really crowd surfing if it’s just the same group of people carrying the guy around? Bachmann applauded the effort, anyways. And after the band closed out their encore with “Plumbline”, the audience did their best to coax them back out for a second encore – I’ve not seen a crowd so insistent that a show not end in forever – but alas, that would be it this time and possibly for all time.

The band have not made any commitment to carrying on after the final two albums in their reissue series – All The Nation’s Airports and White Trash Heroes – come out on August 7. It’s interesting that though their stature in the annals of ’90s indie rock is enormous, their influence is not so easily traced. Not many bands have managed to or even tried to replicate their particular balance of heavy and abstract yet visceral rock, so if they were to put out something new, it’d probably still sound singular and distinct. But that’s getting ahead of things – for now, I was just thankful that Archers were here, that they were great, and that Bachmann had deigned to play “Chumming The Ocean” in the encore of the last Crooked Fingers show since it wasn’t being heard on this night.

BlogTO, Radio Free Canuckistan, and NOW also have reviews of the show, while CBC Music, Beatroute, and Torontoist welcome the band back to Canada for the first time this century.

Photos: Archers Of Loaf @ The Phoenix – June 16, 2012
MP3: Archers Of Loaf – “Dead Red Eyes”
MP3: Archers Of Loaf – “What Did You Expect”
MP3: Archers Of Loaf – “Wrong”
MP3: Archers Of Loaf – “Harnessed In Slums”
Video: Archers Of Loaf – “Harnessed In Slums”
Video: Archers Of Loaf – “Underachievers March & Fight Song”
Video: Archers Of Loaf – “Wrong”
Video: Archers Of Loaf – “What Did You Expect”
Video: Archers Of Loaf – “Lowest Part Is Free!”
Video: Archers Of Loaf – “Might”
Video: Archers Of Loaf – “Web In Front”

Paste has video of a Crooked Fingers set from SXSW back in March.

Mission Of Burma have made a second MP3 from their forthcoming album Unsound, out July 10.

MP3: Mission Of Burma – “Second Television”

Spin talks to Greg Dulli about the Afghan Whigs which makes its only Canadian stop on October 3 at The Phoenix. Stereogum has also taken it on themselves to enumerate the bands 13 “most vicious” songs.

DIY talks to Tobin Sprout about the already so-prolific Guided By Voices reunion, which yields its third album Bears For Lunch around November.

Consequence Of Sound, Philly Burbs, and Metro talk to Doug Martsch of Built To Spill.

Sun Kil Moon has released a new video from Among The Leaves; Mark Kozelek plays these songs and more at The Great Hall on October 3. Boxing Scene also has an interview with the man about the pugilist themes of his songwriting.

Video: Sun Kil Moon – “Black Kite”

Wayne Coyne talks about the new Flaming Lips record to Paste and Rolling Stone. It’s due out later this year.

Paste checks in with Ira Elliot of Nada Surf.

Pitchfork talks to author Jesse Jarnow about his book Big Day Coming: Yo La Tengo and The Rise of Indie Rock, the new book about Yo La TengoYo La Tengo and the rise of indie rock.

Stereogum gets into a turntable.fm session with Ted Leo and talks tunes.

JAM and Beatroute get a moment of Craig Finn of The Hold Steady’s time for some questions.

Stereogum and The Los Angeles Times check in to see what Liz Phair is up to.

Paste has premiered a new video from Mates Of State; it’s a Guided By Voices cover taken from the Science Fair charity compilation coming out July 3.

Video: Mates Of State – “I Am A Scientist”

Interview has premiered the new video from Savoir Adore, whose new album Our Nature will be out this Fall.

Video: Savoir Adore – “Dreamers”

Bowerbirds have released another new video from The Clearing.

Video: Bowerbirds – “Sweet Moment”

Spin have premiered a new video from and Interview has a chat with Best Coast. They’re at The Phoenix on July 21.

Video: Best Coast – “The Only Place”

Consequence Of Sound talks to Munaf Rayani and Nashville Scene and Red And Black to Michael James of Explosions In The Sky.

Wednesday, June 6th, 2012

Better And Better

Calexico, Grizzly Bear, and The Antlers ready new albums

Photo via Anti-AntiJust as yesterday offered a flurry of tour announcements, today we’ve got a few pretty high-profile artists offering details on new albums; two from artists who have been away for some time and one from an act that’s barely taken a moment to breathe.

First, you’ve got Tuscon’s Calexico. They’ve kept fans appeased with the Road Atlas compilations of previously tour-only material, but no one’s forgotten it’s been some time since they released 2008’s Carried To Dust – almost four years to the day by the time their new record Algiers is released on September 11, their first for Anti- what with their long-time label Quarterstick having folded in 2009.

The band already have a full slate of Fall tour dates lined up, but they’re mostly all in Europe – fear not, though, the chances they won’t be rolling through so soothe your soul with the sounds of the desert soon enough are slim to none. And in the meantime, there’s a new video that offers the first sample of the new album to savour.

Video: Calexico – “Para”

It’s been three years since we last heard from Brooklyn’s Grizzly Bear and their breakout Veckatimest, and while their break has been well-earned and peppered with solo projects, news that their new album will finally be out on September 18 should please many out there. And while it doesn’t yet have a name, it does have a first track available to stream and a world tour to support it; Toronto can look forward to hearing those harmonies fill Massey Hall on September 26; tickets are $45.89 – fees included – and go on sale Friday at 10AM. Album details and full tour dates can be had at Exclaim.

Stream: Grizzly Bear – “Sleeping Ute”

I don’t think anyone was necessarily expecting to hear from The Antlers anytime soon – they released Burst Apart just over a year ago and even just released a final single from it in the UK at the end of April. But clearly taking a break isn’t for them, as they’ve announced a new release – also their first for Anti- – entitled Undersea due out on July 24. No samples or specifics yet, but there is a website and a trailer. Update: Pitchfork reports that Undersea isn’t a full-length, but a four-song EP.

Trailer: The Antlers / Undersea

The final two installments in the Archers Of Loaf remaster and bonus-laden reissue program – All The Nation’s Airports and White Trash Heroes – will be released simultaneously on August 7; a track from the latter has been made available to download. While it’s great that these editions will finally be out, one hopes that this doesn’t mark the end of the Archers Of Loaf reunion… They’re at The Phoenix on June 16.

MP3: Archers Of Loaf – “Dead Red Eyes”

Bob Mould talks to Clash about the Sugar years, the recorded output of which will be re-released on July 24.

The whole of The Afghan Whigs’ set at Primavera Sound in Barcelona last weekend is available to watch in quite-good audio and video. And if you want to further pretend you were in Spain for the festival, WFMU has audio streams of many of the sets from the first two days; one assumes the third day will be forthcoming.

Video: The Afghan Whigs @ San Miguel Primavera Sound – May 31, 2012

The sixth and final part of The AV Club’s retrospective look at R.E.M. is now up.

Ted Leo writes for Spin about a youth informed by the musical works of Rush.

NPR has a World Cafe session with The Magnetic Fields.

Daytrotter has posted a session with Eisley.

The final installment of Room 205’s video session with Blouse is now up.

Spinner chats with Bethany Cosentino and The Dallas Observer with Bobb Bruno, both of Best Coast. They’re in town at The Phoenix on July 21.

Guitar World talks six-strings with Lauren Larson of Ume. There’s also an interview at Houston Press.

Saturday, May 26th, 2012

CONTEST – Archers Of Loaf @ The Phoenix – June 16, 2012

Photo By Sandlin GaitherSandlin GaitherWho: Archers Of Loaf
What: Legendary ’90s college rock outfit led by Eric Bachmann who unexpectedly reunited last year to mark the re-releases of their back catalog and also to show the kids how it’s done. How what’s done? How EVERYTHING is done.
Why: The Archers have slowly but steadily been hitting major (and minor) markets and finally, it’s Toronto’s turn. And while the show isn’t technically part of NXNE – though a number of wristband-holders will be admitted – the Archers documentary live film What Did You Expect? will be making its world premiere at the festival the night before.
When: Saturday, June 16, 2012
Where: The Phoenix Concert Theatre in Toronto (19+)
Who else: Toronto’s Metz open up.
How: Tickets for the show are $25.50 in advance but courtesy of Collective Concerts and Merge, I’ve got a grand prize pack consisting of one pair of passes to the show and copies of both reissues so far – Icky Mettle and Vee Vee – on LP and a second prize of a pair of passes to the show to give away. To enter, email me at contests AT chromewaves.net with “I want to be an “Archer of Loaf-crosse” (yes, that’s right) in the subject line and your full name and mailing address in the body; if you don’t want the records and just want to be entered for the passes, make a note of that in the email. Contest closes at midnight, June 8.

MP3: Archers Of Loaf – “What Did You Expect”
MP3: Archers Of Loaf – “Wrong”
MP3: Archers Of Loaf – “Harnessed In Slums”