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Posts Tagged ‘Dandy Warhols’

Tuesday, April 2nd, 2013

Mutual Core

It’s the return of Björk to Toronto, starring Björk. And maybe you. But definitely Björk.

Photo By Inez van Lamsweerde & Vinoodh MatadinInez van Lamsweerde & Vinoodh MatadinIt might seem like Björk doesn’t tour much anymore – after all, it’s been nearly five years since she was last here headlining V Fest 2007 in support of Volta, but that was actually her last album before 2011’s Biophilia. So besides the fact that she’s been working at a slower pace than when the ’90s triumvirate of Debut/Post/Homogenic made her one of the most unconventional pop stars of Alternative Nation, there’s also the demands of raising a family, and anyways – if you could live here just watching TED talks or in hotels on the road watching ESPN, where would you rather hang out?

In any case, Biophilia initially came with an ambitious slate of live shows, but the preference for more intimate, in-the-round, month-long residencies over conventional shows limited the cities that could host her to the likes of New York, Paris, and Manchester and even if there were intentions of adding more cities, the need for vocal polyp surgery last Fall would have probably ixnayed those. All of which is to say, yes Björk has been away for a while but she’s not forgotten us – as I speculated last month, she is indeed making a stop between already-announced engagements at Ottawa Bluesfest and Pitchfork Festival, and will be at Echo Beach on July 16 with whatever wild, weird, and wonderful show she’s put together for this North American jaunt.

Tickets for the show are $64.50 and $85.00 for VIP, but courtesy of LiveNation, I’ve got one pair of passes to the show to give away before the regular onsale happens this Thursday morning at 10AM. To enter, email me at contests@chromewaves.net with “I want to see Bjork” in the subject line and your full name in the body, and have that in to me by midnight, April 3. Yes, that’s tomorrow night. Winners will be informed before the general on-sale goes live.

MP3: Björk – “Verandi”
MP3: Björk – “It’s In Our Hands”
MP3: Björk – “Cosmogony”
Video: Björk – “Mutual Core” (in Times Square)

Titus Andronicus have announced a May 2 date at Lee’s Palace in support of last year’s Local Business. Yes they’ve already been through for that one and yes, they’ll probably be back yet again before all is said and done. And you know why? Because people keep going. Tickets for this show are $18.50 in advance.

MP3: Titus Andronicus – “Ecce Homo”

Australia’s Presets are coming back to town behind last year’s Pacifica with a date at The Danforth Music Hall on May 10, tickets $25 plus attendant fees.

Video: The Presets – “Promises”

A PSA that the Marina & The Diamonds/Charli XCX show originally scheduled for May 23 at the Sound Academy has been moved to Echo Beach, a development that will probably be welcomed by everyone unless it rains, in which case it will be cursed. Noisey talks to Charli XCX about her debut album True Romance, due out April 15, and Consequence Of Sound has a stream of one of the new songs off of it.

Video: Marina & The Diamonds – “How To Be A Heartbreaker”
Stream: Charli XCX – “What I Like”

British rockers The Boxer Rebellion have announced a North American tour in support of their new album Promises, out May 14, and will be at The Opera House in Toronto on May 24, tickets $18.50. They talked to Billboard about what to expect from the new album.

MP3: The Boxer Rebellion – “No Harm”
Video: The Boxer Rebellion – “Diamonds”

With their new album Ultramarine ready for an April 16 release, Young Galaxy have made a May 31 date at Lee’s Palace to celebrate its release, tickets $15. The Line Of Best Fit has an interview with the band.

Stream: Young Galaxy – “Pretty Boy”

Marking the physical release of last Fall’s Heavyweight EP, Rachael Yamagata will be in town at The Mod Club on June 4 as part of her Dealbreaker Tour, tickets $16.50 in advance.

Video: Rachael Yamagata – “Even If I Don’t”

Perhaps realizing that the royalties from the Veronica Mars movie won’t start rolling in for a while, The Dandy Warhols have announced a lace anniversary tour for the only record of theirs anyone ever really cared about and will play Thirteen Tales Of Urban Bohemia in its entirety at The Phoenix on June 5, tickets $32.50.

Video: The Dandy Warhols – “Bohemian Like You”

Rancid will headline the Avenues and Alleways Fest at Echo Beach on June 12, featuring all manner of Rancid-approved punk bands. Tickets for that are $35 in advance.

Video: Rancid – “Ruby Soho”

British soul-funk saviours The Heavy have made a return engagement in support of last year’s The Glorious Dead; they’ll be at The Phoenix on June 19, tickets $17.50.

Video: The Heavy – “What Makes A Good Man”

Barely making himself scarce after being pretty much everywhere during Canadian Musicfest, Mac DeMarco will be at The Hoxton on June 30, tickets $14.

MP3: Mac DeMarco – “Freaking Out The Neighbourhood”

A second official batch of NXNE acts was announced last week, with notable names including punk vets Social Distortion, who will be headlining the free Yonge-Dundas Square show on the Thursday night, confirmation of Big Boi doing the same on the Sunday, Coeur de Pirate making her first appearance post-motherhood, and Fucked Up doing their thing at The Horseshoe on the Saturday night. Also likely to be a hot ticket is Montreal’s Majical Cloudz, recently signed to Matador for the May 21 release of Impersonator. In addition to the NXNE appearance, he/they’ll be at The Great Hall on May 13 supporting Youth Lagoon. And if you’re interested in all the artists officially announced for NXNE thus far, hit the artists page.

MP3: Majical Cloudz – “Childhood’s End”
MP3: Majical Cloudz – “Turns Turns Turns”

Some more additions to Toronto Urban Roots Fest of a decidedly domestic nature; joining a host of others at Garrison Common from July 4 to 7 will be Toronto twang-duo Whitehorse and ascendant Vancouver singer-songwriter Hannah Georgas. The former is playing on the Sunday, July 7, the latter on the Saturday, July 6.

Video: Whitehorse – “Achilles’ Desire”
Video: Hannah Georgas – “Somebody”

Noel Gallagher-approved, One Direction-baiting, Olympic-soundtracking, chart-topping English singer-songwriter Jake Bugg will make his Toronto debut at The Mod Club on August 3, tickets $15.

Video: Jake Bugg – “Lightning Bolt”

Thursday, May 31st, 2012

Fragrant World

Yeasayer are now big enough to play The Sound Academy, and other assorted sundry news items

Photo By Anna PalmaAnna PalmaIt used to be that the room that every concert-goer in Toronto hated was The Kool Haus, a ridiculously-named concrete box on the waterfront that usually marked the point where a percentage of long-time fans would decide a band had gotten too big and would peel off to find the next big thing, only to have their places happily taken by folks from the more mainstream side of things who could care less that said band had been grinding it out in the clubs for years – they were that band with that one song that they’d heard on the radio/on a soundtrack/in and ad/whatever.

It was the circle of life, and it still applies now except that instead of the 2000-capacity Kool Haus marking that demarcation point, lately bands have been jumping straight from the clubs to the Sound Academy – an even more despised concrete box on the waterfront that, despite the number of people who swear they will never go to a show there, still sells out its 3000+ capacity with regularity. But on the plus side, people look at the Kool Haus a lot more affectionately these days.

All of which is to say that I’m mildly surprised – and yet not – that Brooklyn’s Yeasayer have booked themselves into The Sound Academy this Summer for their North American tour in support of their third album, Fragrant World. I guess I just didn’t think that Yeasayer had the sort of mass appeal that would justify a move from the 1000-person Phoenix, where they were their last time through in June 2011, to a room three times larger this time out. But hey, it’s happening – much to the dismay of many, I’m sure – on August 21, which also happens to be the day that the new album comes out. Tickets for that one will be $22.50 general admission and $32.50 for VIP balcony seats.

The first track from Fragrant World has been made available to download, and there’s a piece in Spin from last Fall where singer Chris Keating talked about the song, specifically.

MP3: Yeasayer – “Henrietta”

In other show announcements – The Dandy Warhols will play an in-store at Sonic Boom’s Annex location on June 3 at 4:30PM before their show at The Phoenix later that night. There’s interviews with the band at The Philadelphia Inquirer, Boston Phoenix, and Vancouver Observer.

MP3: The Dandy Warhols – “Country Leaver”

Brooklyn’s Ava Luna have made a date at The Drake Underground for July 14, tickets $10 in advance. Their debut album Ice Level was released earlier this Winter.

MP3: Ava Luna – “Wrenning Day”

California’s RACES – yes, I believe the all caps is mandatory – will be at The Drake on July 23 in support of their debut Year Of The Witch, which is also available to stream in its entirety.

MP3: RACES – “Big Broom”
Stream: RACES / Year Of The Witch

Los Angeles ambient-electronic artist Julia Holter will be at The Horseshoe on September 22 in support of her widely-acclaimed second album Ekstasis. Tickets for that are $12 in advance and The Quietus has an interview.

Video: Julia Holter – “Our Sorrw”

Beachwood Sparks have released a second MP3 from their comeback record The Tarnished Gold, out June 26.

MP3: Beachwood Sparks – “Sparks Fly Again”

Rolling Stone has premiered the new animated video from Andrew Bird, taken from Break It Yourself. He plays Echo Beach on July 19.

Video: Andrew Bird – “eyeoneye”

Filter has a video session with School Of Seven Bells.

Room 205 has posted the second installment of their video series with Blouse.

Pitchfork solicits a guest list from Jana Hunter of Lower Dens, in town at Lee’s Palace on July 17.

Coup de Main and Tulsa World talk to Annie Clark of St. Vincent.

Ume’s Lauren Larson chats with The Dallas Observer.

The Village Voice finds out what Amy Klein has been up to since leaving Titus Andronicus last Fall – mainly starting a new band, Leda. Which sounds like this.

MP3: Leda – “Halfway”

The Stool Pigeon talks to both Victoria Legrand and Alex Scally of Beach House.

The Quietus profiles The Men, doing up NXNE with shows at The Garrison on June 14 and Wrongbar on June 15.

Blurt talks to Brett Netson of Electronic Anthology Project about synth-ing up the likes of Built To Spill and Dinosaur Jr.

Rolling Stone has a video interview with Greg Dulli about the Afghan Whigs reunion.

Bob Mould takes an in-depth look back at the Sugar years for The Quietus. Their catalog gets reissued in fancy form come July 24.

Wednesday, April 11th, 2012

Put Your Back N 2 It

Perfume Genius and Parenthetical Girls at The Drake Underground in Toronto

Photo By Frank YangFrank YangIf you thought that any combination of it being a Sunday night and Easter would result in a lightly-attended Perfume Genius show at The Drake on Sunday night, you’d have been wrong. Which is to say that I was wrong; the handful of tickets remaining were snatched up when doors opened and by the time I got there, it was officially sold out. And with good cause – Mike Hadreas’ second album under as Perfume Genius – Put Your Back N 2 It – is a stunning record, giving his emotionally stark songwriting with just enough sonic adornment to make it not just palatable, but delicious.

Perfume Genius weren’t the only draw; supporting them on this tour were fellow Pacific northwesterners Parenthetical Girls from Portland, who’ve garnered their own loyal fanbase over the past decade and added to it locally having been here for two nights in January supporting Los Campesinos. While there were enough similarities that this bill made sense in some ways, in others you couldn’t imagine a more disparate pairing. Fronted by the magnetic Zac Pennington, their set was more musical theatre than conventional concert with his flamboyant yet dry delivery leading the band through what felt like selections from a synth-rock opera, enhanced by some great audience repartee and a few forays into the crowd. Importantly though, for all the theatrics, they still had immediate and hummable tunes underneath it all and their sincerity was never obscured by camp or irony. Even if it had, it’d still have been fun but that it wasn’t was even better.

Irony wasn’t any kind of risk with Perfume Genius; Hadreas is all about raw, unvarnished honesty. Seeing him at Matador 21 in 2010, circa his debut Learning, it was impossible to not be impressed how he silenced the theatre with just two keyboards and his voice. This time, he was again accompanied by Alan Wyffels on synths but also a third player alternating on guitar and drums, and while the extra instrumentation went a long way to filling things out and pushing them forward, the live readings of the Back material still felt more immediate and stripped down than the record, yet still dramatic in their content and often abrupt in their finish – when the songs were done, they were just done.

He played for barely 45 minutes, drawing mainly from Put Your Back N 2 It, including a faux encore that Hadreas distinguished from the main set by ducking under his piano for a few seconds before re-emerging. He commented that the last time he played this room, back in the Fall of 2010, there was maybe a tenth of the people who were here this time but even so, the packed house remained dead silent and respectful throughout the set. Considering how personal and intimate Hadreas’ music is, it’s hard to imagine him having to establish the sort of connection with the audience that was so evident here on a larger scale, but considering how powerful that connection is it’s hard to imagine it not reaching and resonating with more people. What happens next is for the future to tell, I suppose, but this night was near perfect.

The Republican and NOW have interviews with Mike Hadreas while The Montreal Mirror profiles Parenthetical Girls.

Photos: Perfume Genius, Parenthetical Girls @ The Drake Underground – April 8, 2012
MP3: Perfume Genius – “Hood”
MP3: Perfume Genius – “Dark Parts”
MP3: Perfume Genius – “All Waters”
MP3: Perfume Genius – “Learning”
MP3: Parenthetical Girls – “The Pornographer”
MP3: Parenthetical Girls – “A Note To Self”
Video: Perfume Genius – “Hood”
Video: Perfume Genius – “Lookout, Lookout”
Video: Parenthetical Girls – “The Privilege”
Video: Parenthetical Girls – “Careful Who You Dance With”
Video: Parenthetical Girls – “The Pornographer”
Video: Parenthetical Girls – “The Common Touch”
Video: Parenthetical Girls – “Young Throats”
Video: Parenthetical Girls – “Evelyn McHale”
Video: Parenthetical Girls – “A Song For Ellie Greenwich”

I suppose credit where credit is due; The Dandy Warhols have somehow maintained a fanbase that allows them to continue to play a room the size of The Phoenix and collect $30 for the privilege of hearing “Bohemian Like You”; they’re there on June 3 in support of their new record This Machine, which comes out April 24.

MP3: The Dandy Warhols – “Country Leaver”
MP3: The Dandy Warhols – “Sad Vacation”

Also straight out of Portland – Blind Pilot are going to be at The Opera House on July 25, continuing to tour last Fall’s We Are The Tide. Tickets for that are $17.50 in advance.

MP3: Blind Pilot – “Keep You Right”

Straight off of announcing a July 10 release for their new record Swing Lo Magellan, Dirty Projectors have slated an extensive tour that brings them to the Music Hall on July 6 with recent 4AD-signees Purity Ring as support; their own debut album will be out on July 24.

Stream: Dirty Projectors – “Gun Has No Trigger”
Stream: Purity Ring – “Belispeak”

The Head & The Heart stops in at The AV Club to participate in their Undercover series with a Fleetwood Mac cover.

Exclaim, The Georgia Straight, and The National Post talk to Alexis Krauss of Sleigh Bells, who are back in town on April 27 and 28 at the Air Canada Centre warming up for Red Hot Chili Peppers.

Pitchfork talks to the boys of POP ETC – née The Morning Benders – who inaugurate their new identity on June 12 with a self-titled album. I guess the all caps is mandatory, eh? Feh.

Spin and The Daily Texan chat with Bowerbirds.

Kurt Wagner of Lambchop reviews his musical upbringing with Pitchfork.

NPR, The Line Of Best Fit, and The National Post all talk to M. Ward on the occasion of the release of his new record A Wasteland Companion.

The AV Club has posted the second part of their extensive history/salute to R.E.M..

Thursday, July 22nd, 2010

Cold War (Nice Clean Fight)

The Morning Benders want ice cream, may as well move to Toronto

Photo By Pieter van HattemPieter van HattemSo all manner of things have been piling up over the past week while I’ve been reminiscing about warm Summer sojourns to Chicago. Let’s get to them.

San Francisco’s Morning Benders are no strangers to Toronto this year, having already come through town twice – once in April for their own show just after their latest album Big Echo was released, and again in June opening up for Broken Bells. They’re back in a couple weeks supporting both Black Keys dates at the Kool Haus on August 3 and 4, but in addition to those performances, they’ve announced they’ll be playing a free acoustic show at the corner of College and Manning in Little Italy on August 4 at 5:30PM in what probably would have been a Soundscapes in-store had the weather not been so nice (or so everyone is hoping). There are rumours that there will be free BBQ and ice cream, but even without refreshments it’ll be a fine, free afternoon of pop music.

MP3: The Morning Benders – “Promises”
Video: The Morning Benders – “Promises”

At long last, after watching her Lilith Fair, Of Montreal and own dates skip us over, Toronto has a date with soul/r&b superstar-in-waiting Janelle Monáe – she is joining The Sadies in supporting Arcade Fire on the Toronto Islands on August 14. Why yes, that is a wacky-ass bill, how good of you to notice. But also an excellent one. Watch this video and tell me that Arcade Fire doesn’t run a real risk of being upstaged by her.

Video: Janelle Monáe – “Tightrope”

Unpronouncable Californian dance-punk outfit !!! (chk chk chk to their friends) have slated a North America tour in support of their forthcoming album Strange Weather Isn’t It?, due out on August 24. Grab an MP3 from their website and look for them at Lee’s Palace on September 26, tickets $16.50 in advance.

MP3: !!! – “Must Be The Moon”
Video: !!! – “AM/FM”

The Dears look to be about done with the follow up to 2008’s Missiles as they’ve scheduled a three-night stand at the Garrison from October 13 to 15 where they’ll surely be previewing new material; tickets on sale Friday (via Singing Lamb). Update: Their label reports that they’ll play the entire new album at the shows and the record isn’t due out till early 2011.

MP3: The Dears – “Disclaimer”

Only in town last month, Swedish sister act First Aid Kit are coming back to North America and will be at the El Mocambo in Toronto on October 15.

MP3: First Aid Kit – “I Met Up With The King”

Blonde Redhead have plotted a North American tour in support of their forthcoming album Penny Sparkle, due September 14. They’ll be at the Phoenix on October 17 with Pantha Du Prince as support; tickets $24.

MP3: Blonde Redhead – “Here Sometimes”
MP3: Pantha Du Prince – “The Splendour”

Helmet are still around and will be at Lee’s Palace on October 17 in support of a new album, Seeing Eye Dog, out September 7.

Video: Helmet – “Unsung”

There are apparently still enough people who want to see The Dandy Warhols live that they can not only book The Phoenix for them, but charge $30 a head. They’re there November 1.

Video: The Dandy Warhols – “Bohemian Like You”

Delorean are back on November 18 for a date at the Mod Club with Lemonade as support.

MP3: Delorean – “Real Love”
Video: Lemonade – “Big Weekend”

Blitzen Trapper tell Spinner that even though Destroyer Of The Void only came out last month, they’re already writing its follow-up. Look for them at the Opera House on August 3.

If it ever looks like Ben Curtis of School Of Seven Bells is sleepwalking through a show, it’s because he may very well be. Hopefully their new live drummer will keep him on his toes when they play the Mod Club on September 15. He also chats with New York Magazine.

Chart has a chat with Beach House; they’re at the Molson Amphitheatre on September 27.

Spinner serves up an Interface session with Stars. They play Massey Hall on October 23.

NPR has a World Cafe session with The National.

Jeff Tweedy talks to Billboard about Wilco’s future as an independent band.

Their own major label experiment come to an ignoble end, Margot & The Nuclear So And So’s will release Buzzard on September 21 on their own.

Paste catches up with John Roderick of The Long Winters, who are so overdue for a new album it’s not funny.

Interview talks to She & Him’s Matt Ward and Zooey Deschanel.

Spinner interviews Holly Miranda.

Rest in peace, Andy Hummel of Big Star.

The final volume of Scott Pilgrim came out this week – The Toronto Star and National Post look at the comic book phenomenon and the film that will be released on August 13, while Exclaim looks at the movie’s soundtrack.