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Posts Tagged ‘Cymbals Eat Guitars’

Thursday, January 5th, 2012

Having

Trespassers William to trespass no more

Photo via Trespassers Williamtrespasserswilliam.comThe new year is traditionally held as a time for fresh starts and new beginnings, but it can also be a symbolic time for drawing things to an end or perhaps more appropriately, wrapping up something to begin something else. Not that that was the only reason it wasn’t a complete surprise when Seattle duo Trespassers William took to Facebook this week to announce that the band would be shelved for the foreseeable future.

Despite completely winning me over with their second album Different Stars – one of my favourites of the decade – their gorgeously sad and languid dreampop led by Anna-Lynne Williams voice and slide guitar never really seemed to catch on beyond a devoted audience to whom the sound of melancholy captured at 100 frames per second and replayed in exquisitely detailed slow-motion was the best thing ever. Even so and despite seemingly endless lineup changes – Williams and guitarist/multi-instrumentalist Matt Brown were the only constants – they carried on for a decade and a half and are now moving onto other things. Williams records solo as Lotte Kestner and is half of Ormonde, while Brown performs as Disinterested; Trespassers William may now be silent, but the voices that comprised it are not.

Similarly, while we’ll not be getting the follow-up to 2006’s Having that was promised for this year, that won’t be the final word from the band. In 2009, the released the European EP The Natural Order Of Things and at the start of last year, digitally released a compilation b-sides and to coincide with the announcement of the hiatus, have cleared the vaults with another digital release in New Songs & Outtakes, consisting of a couple of new songs that had been targeted for the fourth record and other goodies.

I’m sad that they never managed to put together a North American tour that brought them to Toronto, but am glad I was able to catch them at SXSW in 2008 and again in 2010, and to have had the fortune of living with their music for so long.

Update: Again, via Facebook, the band have announced that their b-sides/unreleased material currently available via Bandcamp will be getting a proper physical release. Details to come, but the digital sales will be ending this weekend.

MP3: Trespassers William – “Lie In The Sound”
MP3: Trespassers William – “Vapour Trail”
MP3: Lotte Kestner – “Crush The Bird”

Iron & Wine have released a new video from last year’s Kiss Each Other Clean.

Video: Iron & Wine – “Godless Brother In Love”

At The Paris Review, Dean Wareham keeps a tour diary about taking the “Plays Galaxie 500” shows to Japan.

Independent Weekly talks to Eric Bachmann of Crooked Fingers.

Nicole Atkins plays a video session for The Huffington Post.

Cursive, accompanied by Cymbals Eat Guitars, will be in at The Horseshoe on March 31. Tickets are $16.50 in advance. Cursive’s new album I Am Gemini comes out on February 7; Cymbals Eat Guitars released Lenses Alien last year.

MP3: Cursive – “The Sun & Moon”
MP3: Cymbals Eat Guitars – “Rifle Eyesight (Proper Name)”
MP3: Cymbals Eat Guitars – “Definite Darkness”

The Huffington Post profiles and interviews Warpaint.

And another Yo La Tengo Hannukah show is up over at NYC Taper; that’s five of them now.

Pitchfork bears bad news for those who thought the new Sleigh Bells album Reign Of Terror would be the perfect Valentine’s Day soundtrack; it has been pushed back a week from February 14 to the 21st.

Thursday, July 29th, 2010

No Place To Fall

Isobel Campbell and Mark Lanegan chart North American tour

Photo via VanguardVanguard RecordsI almost ended up repeating myself verbatim from four and a half years ago when the news that Isobel Campbell was putting together a Fall North American tour in support of Hawk, her new record with Mark Lanegan out August 24. Specifically the “Torontonians haven’t seen Isobel Campbell since she sulked offstage fromBelle & Sebastian’s May 2002 show at the Kool Haus… and then quit the band a couple of weeks later” part. Because, well, it was true then.

The context, however, was that it was supposed to no longer be true as of that following March as Campbell was scheduled to play Revival during CMW in support of her new record Ballad Of The Broken Seas, her first collaboration with Lanegan, and thus give Toronto a fonder memory of she who had by then established herself as a singer-songwriter of repute and not just the girl who used to be in Belle & Sebastian. Alas, that show was cancelled on account of her coming down with the flu and though I was able to see her shortly thereafter at SxSW with Eugene Kelly spotting for Lanegan, fans back home weren’t so fortunate – if fortunate is the correct word, as that SxSW performance was somewhat disappointing.

2008’s Sunday At Devil Dirt found Campbell working with Lanegan again and this time, the dynamic between the two, which was a bit forced their first time out, was much more natural and consequently, the blues and Americana-drenched results far more compelling. All signs point to Hawk continuing in that direction, which makes the fact that the tour is happening and that Lanegan is going to be along for the ride rather exciting news. Campbell’s immune system willing, the Toronto date will be October 20 at Lee’s Palace (and not the Mod Club as the Under The Radar piece states – this from the promoter).

This track is from Sunday At Devil Dirt. A couple of new songs are streaming at Campbell’s MySpace.

MP3: Isobel Campbell & Mark Lanegan – “Trouble”

The working relationship with BBQ apparently done for good, it’ll be King Khan & The Shrines causing shit at Lee’s Palace on October 8.

MP3: King Khan & The Shrines – “Land Of The Freak”

With the September 7 release date for Personal Life drawing ever near, The Thermals have slated a North American tour supported by Cymbals Eat Guitars that stops in at Lee’s Palace on October 9. They talk to Spinner about writing their single “Canada” on stage at a gig in Buffalo.

MP3: The Thermals – “I Don’t Believe You”
MP3: Cymbals Eat Guitars – “Wind Phoenix”

Though the initial salvo of dates seemed so skip over Toronto, the full itinerary for Gorillaz’ Autumn North American tour will indeed be stopping here – at the Air Canada Centre on October 13, to be precise.

Video: Gorillaz – “Stylo”

Exclaim talks to Versus, whose new record On The Ones And Threes is out on Tuesday and available to stream now. They’re at Lee’s Palace on August 13.

Stream: Versus / On The Ones And Threes

NME gets some bon mots from Emmy The Great about what to expect from album number two, already 99% funded and due out in February of next year.

NPR has a World Cafe session with Tift Merritt.

GQ and Time Out have interviews with M.I.A.. Cussing ensues.

Pitchfork solicits a guest list from Bethany Cosentino of Best Coast; they’re at Lee’s Palace on September 25.

NYCTaper is sharing audio from The Flaming Lips’ show in Central Park on Monday night.

They Shoot Music solicits and acoustic set from A Place To Bury Strangers.

Noizefests chats with Mel Draisey of The Clientele. Their new release Minotaur is out August 31.

The Quietus has an extensive, career-spanning interview with Dean Wareham of Dean & Britta.

The Village Voice talks to Jason Pierce about the lasting legacy of Spiritualized’s Ladies & Gentlemen We Are Floating In Space

Friday, April 2nd, 2010

CONTEST – Cymbals Eat Guitars, Bear In Heaven & Freelance Whales @ The El Mocambo – April 6, 2010

Photo via MySpaceMySpaceWhere do bands these days get their ridiculous names? If there were still a working marquee over the El Mocambo, this coming Tuesday night it would read like a litany of the absurd – Cymbals Eat Guitars? Cymbals are inanimate objects and cannot eat anything, and even if we were to anthropomorphize them sufficiently that this isn’t an issue, why would they feed on their musical brethren? Nonsense! Bear In Heaven? Everyone knows there are no bears in heaven, bears never die. They just hibernate for really, really long times and when they all eventually wake up – look out! Freelance Whales? You can’t sign whales to contracts, they have no fingers with which to hold a pen. Poppycock.

Of course, that’s how it’d read – pronounced out loud, the lineup would sound more like “buzzzzz” with all three bands drawing significant attention for their latest (and in two cases, first) records – Cymbals Eat Guitars with Why There Are Mountains, Bear In Heaven with Beast Rest Fourth Mouth and Freelance Whales’ Weathervanes. The odds of catching all of them together for one (low) price ever again are pretty much nil.

Tickets for the show are $10 in advance but courtesy of Collective Concerts, I’ve got a pair of passes to give away for the show. To enter, email me at contests AT chromewaves.net with “I want to see CEG/BIH/FW” in the subject line and your full name in the body. Contest closes at midnight, April 4.

In addition to this show, Cymbals Eat Guitars will be back in town at the Phoenix on April 20 opening up for Los Campesinos! and Freelance Whales are back on May 8 with Shout Out Louds at the Mod Club – don’t even get me started on either of their names. Bear In Heaven have no return engagement set yet, but they are the subject of features at The List and The Georgia Straight.

MP3: Cymbals Eat Guitars – “Wind Phoenix”
MP3: Bear In Heaven – “Bag Of Bags”
MP3: Bear In Heaven – “Lovesick Teenagers”
MP3: Bear In Heaven – “Whole Hearted Mess”
MP3: Freelance Whales – “Generator 2nd Floor”

Tuesday, January 26th, 2010

Hot Tips

The D’Urbervilles, Forest City Lovers, Evening Hymns and Jenny Omnichord at The Garrison in Toronto

Photo By Frank YangFrank YangIf you were at The Garrison on Friday night and felt a sense of deja vu, it was with good reason. Though the occasion was the third anniversary party for Toronto label Out Of This Spark, you might have also been at the second anniversary party a year ago at The Tranzac which featured 3/4 of the same performers in The D’Urbervilles, Forest City Lovers and Jenny Omnichord, or maybe the Evening Hymns release show in December, or perhaps at the Summerworks show in August which showcased The D’Urbervilles and Forest City Lovers, both separately and together. Maybe you were at one of these shows. Maybe you were at all of them. I was, anyways, and so trying to write this one up without overtly repeating myself is a bit of a challenge. But here we go.

As with last year, Jenny Omnichord (née Mitchell) was batting leadoff, armed with a couple of her namesake electronic instruments and a brace of odd and entertaining songs and banter. Her stuff was unapologetically twee and childlike, but also with a distinct streak of black humour running through them. Not necessarily the sort of stuff I’d listen to on my own, but as a way to kick off an evening, you could do far worse.

Following her were Evening Hymns, who’d crafted one of my favourite records of last year in Spirit Guides and while many artists spend their careers trying to capture the energy of their live show on record, the challenge of Evening Hymns is how to recreate the scope and grandeur of the album on stage. They came close at the record release show, but that required something like a dozen players and liberal use of smoke machines. This time out, they were a compact five-piece unit less concerned with recreating the songs as they were recorded than rendering them as best they could with what they had, and by and large it worked. While it was clear there was still some gelling necessary before they’d be at their best, all the parts needed to do these songs justice were in place – if this is the unit to take Spirit Guides on the road and out into the world, then it’s in good hands.

Much of the appeal of Forest City Lovers is their understatedness, and the way their melodic folk-pop insinuates itself into your mind subtly, rather than jump all about in your face. That said, it’s been quite nice to see them becoming more engaging and extroverted with each show and release of new music without losing those qualities – in particular, the two sides of their recent “Phodilus and Tyto” 7″ don’t even clock in at seven minutes, but offer a very exciting look at where their third album, currently being recorded, could be heading. Goodness knows they were the highlights of their live set, and considering the selections from Haunting Moon Sinking and The Sun And The Wind were no slouches, that’s saying something. The new record is easily one of the local releases I’m most looking forward to this year.

Considering how quickly frontman John O’Reagan’s Diamond Rings electro-pop solo project has taken off, it would be understandable if he opted to shelve the rock keep the eyeshadow on all the time. But happily, the man can multitask and The D’Urbervilles are wrapping up work on a new record and a number of new tunes were showcased in their set. Each time I see them, I further appreciate how they manage to evoke New Wave-ish/dance-rock touchstones without sounding like every other New Wave-ish/dance rock acts. Their set was short, punchy and would have been a fine cap to the evening and a testament to the quality of talent on the label, but they weren’t quite done yet.

As they did at the Summerworks show, the encore for the entire night brought Jenny Omnichord, Forest City Lovers and The D’Urbervilles out on stage together to perform one each of their songs in massive lineup-style. It wasn’t quite the prepared reimagining of the material as they’d done in August, but still good fun to see and hear regardless. And then they were done.

Narratives and Singing Lamb also have reviews of the show. Many of the performers are in action again over the next while – Forest City Lovers frontwoman Kat Burns is opening up solo-style for Asobi Seksu at the Drake on February 1, Evening Hymns are at the Music Gallery on February 10 as part of Wavelength 500 and The D’Urbervilles are opening up for Fucked Up at the Opera House on February 26.

Photos: The D’Urbervilles, Forest City Lovers, Evening Hymns, Jenny Omnichord @ The Garrison – January 22, 2010
MP3: The D’Urbervilles – “Dragnet”
MP3: The D’Urbervilles – “Spin The Bottle”
MP3: The D’Urbervilles – “Hot Tips”
MP3: Forest City Lovers – “Scared Of Time”
MP3: Forest City Lovers – “Oh Humility” (live)
MP3: Evening Hymns – “Dead Deer”
MP3: Evening Hymns – “Broken Rifle”
MP3: Evening Hymns – “Cedars”
Video: Forest City Lovers – “If I Were A Tree”
Video: Forest City Lovers – “Pirates”
Video: Forest City Lovers – “Song For Morrie”
Video: Forest City Lovers – “Please, Don’t Go”
MySpace: The D’Urbervilles
MySpace: Forest City Lovers
MySpace: Evening Hymns

Speaking of Diamond Rings, the final seven copies of their split-7″ with PS I Love You – which with a “Best New Music” honorific for each of its sides may well be the bestreviewed piece of music in the history of Pitchfork, at least from a linear or temporal density perspective – are now up on eBay with new hand-screened arwtork and signed by the artists, and with proceeds of the auction going to Haitian relief efforts. Diamond Rings also has a couple of Canadian Musicfest showcases announced – March 11 at the Garrison and March 12 at The Silver Dollar – to go with their February 11 show at the Steam Whistle Roundhouse for Wavelength 500.

MP3: Diamond Rings – “All Yr Songs”
MP3: PS I Love You – “Facelove”

Pitchfork has details on the new album from Caribou, entitled Swim and due out April 20 – get the first MP3 in exchange for your email address.

Woodpigeon has paid tribute to the passing of Kate McGarrigle with a cover of what is probably their most famous song to those of a certain generation who grew up watching NFB shorts – “The Log Driver’s Waltz”. Woodpigeon plays the Drake Underground on February 11 and have an in-store at Soundscapes on February 14.

MP3: Woodpigeon – “The Log Driver’s Waltz” (live)

Celebrate the release of Basia Bulat’s new album Heart Of My Own today with a stunning performance of “The Shore” for Le Blogotheque’s Takeaway Shows, video sessions and interviews at Baeble Music’s Guest Apartment and interviews at The National Post, Canadian Press, Exclaim and Ca Va Cool.

Macleans has made available online the feature piece on Owen Pallett that came out of the multi-part interview posted at Radio Free Canuckistan last week. Pallett also plays cover boy of this month’s Exclaim, which I’ll link up when it goes up later today is live. He plays the Queen Elizabeth Theatre on April 8.

Southern Souls have posted a video session with The Balconies. They’re at the Drake Underground on February 10.

Kelowna.com talks to Joel Plaskett. He and the Thrush Hermit reunion are at Lee’s Palace on March 26 and 27.

Soundproof has an interview with Amy Millan, who is putting the solo thing on the back burner this year with both new Broken Social Scene and Stars records in the works.

Singing Lamb chats with Ohbijou’s Casey Mecija.

Those disappointed by the collateral damage from Fanfarlo’s canceled show last December will be pleased to know that the opener, Freelance Whales, will be joining the previously-announced Cymbals Eat Guitars tour and be at the El Mocambo on April 6. Express Night Out and The AV Club have features on the band, whose debut Weathervanes is getting a re-release on March 16.

And the best news of yesterday was that The National’s new album – previously rumoured to be entitled Shine but currently nameless – will be out in May and they’ll be on tour shortly thereafter with a Toronto date at Massey Hall on June 8. Massey Hall. This will be majestic. Ticket presale goes this morning at 10AM – your password is “bloodbuzz” – with tickets ranging in price from $32.50 to $53.50.

Tuesday, December 8th, 2009

Cover Your Tracks

An introduction to Blue Roses

Photo By Danny NorthDanny NorthI had spent the last few days getting contradictory answers as to whether the December 15 Fanfarlo show at the El Mocambo I’d been so looking forward to and the Montreal date the following night were cancelled or not, but yesterday afternoon the band settled the matter – frontman Simon Balthazar’s passport was stolen in Portland and there was no getting a replacement in time to make the Canadian dates. They’ll surely visit us another time, but not next week.

But goodness knows I’m nothing if not someone who always sees the bright side of things (stop laughing) so if there’s a silver lining here, it’s that the evening is freed up to head down to the Drake Underground to see the Canadian debut of Blue Roses. Both the stage name of Ms Laura Groves of England as well as the title of her debut album, the thing that will strike you first about Blue Roses is her voice; Groves possesses a soprano that will stop you in your tracks, then watch in amazement as it soars and swoops around you. The paths it traces are more than a little reminiscent of Kate Bush or, using a more contemporary reference point, Joanna Newsom albeit less boundary-pushing than the former or potentially polarizing than the latter.

Whether accompanied by elegantly fingerpicked guitar or dramatic piano, the music of Blue Roses maintains a light, airy feel, even when the lyrical matter gets weighty or melancholic. And putting aside the arrangements and their delicate balance of traditional and modern tones, the sense of wide-eyed optimism remains – it’s just inherent in Groves’ 21-year old voice. It’s the sound of youth and hopefulness, though not necessarily naivete – these songs have been lived in. Just as Bush or Newsom sound like their songs belong to some dark and mysterious, fairy-inhabited woods, Groves’ songs inhabit a simpler, more pastoral place – one of open fields and meadows, where the skies might be overcast but are worth celebrating nonetheless.

Groves digitally released a new EP yesterday entitled Does Anyone Love Me Now and is currently on her debut tour of North America supporting Marcus Foster and, as previously mentioned, will be at the Drake Underground on December 15. Stereogum collected a series of live performance videos recorded in assorted idyllic locales while Off The Beaten Tracks captured a couple of songs on tape at this Summer’s Edinburgh Festival before the rains came. The Quietus talked to Groves about her hometown of Shipley, Yorkshire.

MP3: Blue Roses – “Doubtful Comforts”
MP3: Blue Roses – “I Am Leaving”
Video: Blue Roses – “I Am Leaving”
MySpace: Blue Roses

The Drake will also be hosting another young and talented English singer-songwriter in the coming months, though I would think that Laura Marling could easily fill a much larger room than the Underground. Perhaps the February 9 engagement is intended to be a deliberately undersized and intimate show to mark the release of her second album, which currently has no name or street date but February is as reasonable a guess as any. Either way, expect the $13.50 tickets, which go on sale Friday, to go fast.

MP3: Laura Marling – “Ghosts”

Marling will also be heading to India this month to do some shows accompanied by Mumford & Sons, with whom she made her Toronto debut last October. Spinner talks to Marcus Mumford about how that tour came about. Mumford & Sons play the decidedly less exotic but much more easily accessible El Mocambo on February 15, their debut Sigh No More will get a North American release on March 2 and you can download a free stripped-down version of their “White Blank Page” over at The Times.

The February 16 release of Lightspeed Champion’s next proper album Life Is Sweet! Nice To Meet You may still be a couple months off, but those looking for a more immediate fix need look no further than Dev Hynes’ own website where he’s begun posting what he calls a series of bootlegs, which are essentially off-the-cuff albums of Hynes messing about. The first to be made available is House-Sitting Songs, which as the title implies, was “recorded mid May 2009 within a week whilst house-sitting for a friend of mine in Manhattan”. Hynes talks to Spinner about his reasons for releasing the record and what else is yet to come.

ZIP: Lightspeed Champion / House-Sitting Songs

Guy Garvey of Elbow gives Teletext an update on how things are progressing with their next album, likely not due out until 2011.

The Music Magazine and Blurt talk to Frightened Rabbit’s Scott Hutichison about their new album The Winter Of Mixed Drinks, due out March 16 in North America.

I had thought that Asobi Seksu’s last visit in October might be an acoustic set, given their quieter tourmates in Loney Dear and Anna Ternheim and the impending release of their new acoustic record Rewolf but no – it was as big and loud a performance as ever. They will, however, be busting out the acoustics – and presumably leaving the strobe lights at home – for their February 1 show at the Drake. Tickets for that will be $10 in advance. Flavorwire talks to Yuki Chikudate about the decision to make an acoustic record.

MP3: Asobi Seksu – “Thursday” (acoustic)

French duo Air has announced a Spring 2010 tour in support of their latest record Love 2 – look for them on March 23 at the Phoenix.

Though they were just here, The Big Pink have announced another tour for next Spring where they’ll be accompanied by fellow strobe junkies A Place To Bury Strangers. Deafness and blindness guaranteed. The Toronto date is March 24 at the Mod Club.

MP3: The Big Pink – “Dominos”
MP3: The Big Pink – “Too Young To Love”
MP3: A Place To Bury Strangers – “In Your Heart”

Cymbals Eat Guitars have set an April 6 date at the El Mocambo as part of a Spring tour, tickets $10. They recently released sessions at both Laundromatinee and Daytrotter.