Posts Tagged ‘Deer Tracks’

Thursday, June 20th, 2013

Brief Encounters

Franz Ferdinand, Frightened Rabbit, and Travis lead an Autumn Scottish invasion

Photo By Andrew KnowlesAndrew KnowlesIt was amusing to me to hear portions of the internet get all worked up a few weeks ago when Franz Ferdinand announced the August 27 release of their fourth album Right Thoughts, Right Words, Right Action, because those people most excited are almost certainly the same ones who will be first to declare it to be, for the third time, inferior to their 2004 self-titled debut. And it may well be true, but it’s strange that those who’d purport to be the Scottish quartet’s biggest fans are also the first to be disappointed by them. I feel for the band, I do.

But it could also be they’re less excited about the prospect of new songs than the band heaving an excuse to hit the road again – after all, whatever you think of their records, there’s no denying that the band remain a phenomenal live band – this I was reminded of last Summer when I saw them at Osheaga. And so fans will be pleased to know the band have announced a Fall tour that brings them back to Toronto for the first time since V Fest 2009; they’ll be at The Kool Haus on October 24, tickets $35 in advance.

The band have not offered an official taste of the new record, but they did just release a little behind-the-scenes video featurette to whet your appetite, assuming your appetite is whetted by things like this.

Video: Franz Ferdinand – “Walk Away”
Video: Franz Ferdinand’s A Weekend In Glasgow

Buzzy Scots CHVRCHES have just released details about their debut album. The Bones of What You Believe, as well as more North American dates including September 15 at the Danforth Music Hall in Toronto. The album is out on September 24 and this is the newest video from it. The Guardian also has an interview.

MP3: CHVRCHES – “The Mother We Share”
Video: CHVRCHES – “Gun”

Veteran Scots Travis have also regrouped for a new album, their first since 2008’s Ode To J. Smith. Where You Stand will be released on August 19 and be accompanied by a North American tour; their first Toronto show in over four years will be on September 25 at the Sound Academy, tickets $30 general admission and $45 VIP.

MP3: Travis – “Driftwood”
Video: Travis – “Where You Stand”

Frightened Rabbit aren’t as firm believers in absence making the heart grow fonder as their countrymen; Selkirk’s most famous rock band will be back for their third visit in a year with a show at The Kool Haus on October 17, still in support of this year’s Pedestrian Verse. Tickets for that are $25 in advance and Under The Radar has the rest of their tour itinerary. They culled through some live footage recorded on an Australian tour for their latest video.

MP3: Frightened Rabbit – “Scottish Winds”
Video: Frightened Rabbit – “Late March, Death March”

M.I.A. may continue to have problems getting her fourth album Matangi released – Maya Arulpragasam talks to The Guardian about why she thinks that is – but she’s still released the first single to stream and is undertaking a small North American tour, including a stop at Toronto’s Danforth Music Hall on July 18; tickets $35 in advance.

Stream: M.I.A. – “Bring The Noize”

Up-and-coming British electronic duo AlunaGeorge have put together a North American tour in support of their debut album Body Music, which comes out July 29 and has just yielded a new video. Exclaim has the full dates, which include a September 9 stop at The Hoxton. Admission will be $20 in advance.

MP3: AlunaGeorge – “You Know You Like It”
Video: AlunaGeorge – “You Know You Like It”

After high-profile supporting slots for M83 last summer and Marina & The Diamonds last month, Charli XCX is finally ready for the spotlight – she’ll make her local headlining debut in support of True Romance on September 16 at The Hoxton, tickets $15. Exclaim has the complete dates and Billboard and Idolator have conversations with the singer.

MP3: Charli XCX – “Glow”

Editors have released a new video from their forthcoming The Weight Of Your Love, out July 2.

Video: Editors – “The Weight”

Aquarium Drunkard, Willamette Weekly, The Portland Mercury, San Francisco Examiner, and Santa Barbara Independent have interviews with Camera Obscura. They play Garrison Common for the Toronto Urban Roots Fest on July 4.

Guitar Player has an interview with Richard Thompson, who opens up the Bob Dylan/Wilco/My Morning Jacket tour that hits The Molson Amphitheatre on July 15.

Pet Shop Boys have released a new video from their forthcoming Electric, out July 16. They play The Sony Centre on September 25.

Video: Pet Shop Boys – “Vocal”

White Lies are streaming another song from their new record Big TV, out August 21. They play The Opera House on October 1.

Stream: White Lies – “There Goes Our Love”

Bella Union has offered details on the second album from orch-pop ensemble Lanterns On The Lake. Until The Colours Run will be out on September 9.

Also out September 9 will be Summer Camp, the second album from Summer Camp. The Line Of Best Fit have details on the release, or you can just watch the trailer.

Trailer: Summer Camp / Summer Camp

Daughter have released a new video from If You Leave; they play The Phoenix on September 29.

Video: Daughter – “Youth”

They’re not tipping their hat as to a new album that it be taken from, but Arctic Monkeys have released a video to go with a brand new new single.

Video: Arctic Monkeys – “Do I Wanna Know?”

Fans of top-notch dreampop in the Mojave 3 vein take note: Pigeons & Planes has premiered a new song from Anglo-Canadian dreampop outfit The High Wire, with details of a new full-length hopefully to come soon.

Stream: The High Wire – “LNOE”

Gigwise gets Richard Hawley to share his true feelings about festivals like Glastonbury – spoiler alert, not positively – and also about his contributions to the new Manic Street Preachers albums, whenever they come out.

And whilst on the topic of Manic Street Preachers, The Guardian talks to James Dean Bradfield and Tone Deaf to Sean Moore about rugby and music.

Despite being one of the busiest producers and sidemen going, DIY reports that Dev Hynes will release a second Blood Orange record this year, possibly with the title of Cupid Deluxe.

Noisey meets Bobby Gillespie of Primal Scream, whose latest More Light got a North American release this week.

Alex James confirms to Contact Music that Blur did, indeed, hit the studio in Hong Kong recently and that the sessions went “very well”.

Clash and GQ chat with the lads of Beady Eye about their new album BE.

The Guardian has premiered the new video from Foals, taken from this year’s Holy Fire.

Video: Foals – “Bad Habit”

NPR has posted a Tiny Desk Concert with Billy Bragg.

The Guardian chats with Stornoway frontman Brian Briggs.

Figure 8 chats with Dave Gedge of The Wedding Present.

Monday, March 4th, 2013

The Archer Trilogy

The Deer Tracks at The Silver Dollar in Toronto

Photo By Frank YangFrank YangThe nice thing about having written about Swedish duo The Deer Tracks at length over over the past ten months is that rather than bother with any preamble, I can just point you to those past pieces and get right to it. I honestly hadn’t expected them to return to town so soon after NXNE last year, not because they didn’t want to but because of the economic realities of small international acts trying to tour this continent. But with the final instalment of their Archer Trilogy just out and an appearance at SXSW confirmed, they put together a massive tour that brought them back to Toronto for a show at The Silver Dollar on Thursday night.

As with last time, the core duo of David Lehnberg and Elin Lindfors were augmented live by a drummer and keyboardist, and the band as a unit were able to introduce a new dimension of improvisation and urgency to the songs while maintaining the drum-tight arrangements of the electronically-inclined recorded versions. Unlike last Summer, Lehnberg left the guitar at home this time out and played exclusively keys, with Lindfors playing more musical saw along with her melodica, glockenspiel, and percussion duties. And oh yes, they both sang – beautifully, emotively, and with a commitment to the performance and material that you don’t realize is rare until you actually witness it for real.

Their set, a cherry-picked condensed version of the whole of The Archer Trilogy yet still feeling remarkably cohesive with a definite arc, clocked in at under an hour – considerably more than we got at their NXNE showcase, but still feeling too short. In some perfect world, there would be the opportunity to see them perform their Trilogy front to back with the sort of production and presentation you know that Lehnberg and Lindfors see in their mind’s eye, but for now I will be thankful they’ve come around as much as they have and hope it happens again.

The Deer Tracks just released a new video from The Archer Trilogy, Pt. 3 for “Divine Light”.

Photos: The Deer Tracks @ The Silver Dollar – February 28, 2013
MP3: The Deer Tracks – “Bucket Of Sunbeams”
MP3: The Deer Tracks – “W”
MP3: The Deer Tracks – “Okta Crash”
MP3: The Deer Tracks – “Dark Passenger”
Video: The Deer Tracks – “Divine Light”
Video: The Deer Tracks – “Lazarus”
Video: The Deer Tracks – “Bucket Of Sunbeams”
Video: The Deer Tracks – “Meant To Be”
Video: The Deer Tracks – “Tiger”
Video: The Deer Tracks – “Fall With Me”
Video: The Deer Tracks – “Fra Ro Raa / Ro Ra Fraa”
Video: The Deer Tracks – “Ram Ram”
Video: The Deer Tracks – “Slow Collision”
Video: The Deer Tracks – “12sxfrya”

The Chicago Tribune talks to Søen Løkke Juul of Indians, performing tonight at The Drake Underground.

PopMatters goes all in on The Mary Onettes, offering an interview with the band and a stream of their new album Hit The Waves ahead of its March 19 release date. The Quietus has a track-by-track walkthrough of the album by the band.

Stream: The Mary Onettes / Hit The Waves

There’s a fair bit of interesting Scandinavian representation at this year’s Canadian Musicfest, but frustratingly a lot of it is in scheduling conflict with other things I want to see. Happily, Queen West music shop Moog Audio is throwing their hat in the festival in-store ring by hosting, in conjunction with Nordic By Nature and Swede + Sour, a triple-bill featuring Iceland’s Sóley, Norway’s Sandra Kolstad, and Sweden’s This Is Head, on the evening of March 21 from 6:30PM to 8:00PM. And then you can zip up to The Mod Club to see Efterklang and complete your Nordic band bingo card. Or maybe that should be “bíngö”. Also, note that the Kolstad video is tastefully but definitely NSFW.

Video: Sóley – “Pretty Face”
Video: Sandra Kolstad – “Run Away (Where Are We?)”
Video: This Is Head – “Version A-B”

And speaking of Efterklang, NPR has a piece on the band and how they turned an abandoned Russian town into their studio for Piramida. As mentioned, they headline The Mod Club on March 21 for Canadian Musicfest.

The Straits Times and Echoes & Dust talk to Ólafur Arnalds about his new record For Now I Am Winter, out in North America on April 2.

The Oxford Times have an interview with Nanna BryndĂ­s Hilmarsd&ocaute;ttir of Of Monsters & Men, who are back in town on May 25 as part of a massive North American tour. The venue and ticket details are still to come, and maybe it’s wishful think, but the way the “TBA” is phrased, I get the sense that their show is part of something bigger. HMM.

MP3: Of Monsters & Men – “Little Talks”

Vice and Drowned In Sound talk to Copenhagen’s Iceage, who will be in town for NXNE this year for at least a couple shows on June 15 and 16.

And while it’s pure speculation at this point, it’s hard not to look at this and then this, consider this and figure that even if she stops to do some antiquing, Björk will have more than enough time in those six days to make her first visit to Toronto since this. Or at least one would hope.

Thursday, February 28th, 2013

III

The Deer Tracks believe good things come in threes

Photo By Angel CeballosAngel CeballosThe serial as a form of structure is hardly uncommon in art these days; it’s the standard for television, has been used as long as books have been published, and is increasingly the norm in cinema. In popular music, however, it’s almost the complete opposite – the three-minute single – which remains the fundamental unit of currency. But don’t tell that to Gävle, Sweden’s The Deer Tracks – the duo of David Lehnberg and Elin Lindfors have spent the last two years crafting an epic song cycle they’ve called The Archer Trilogy, stretching over an EP and two albums and 103 minutes – to say nothing of the 40-minute ambient prologue.

And what’s more remarkable than the ambition – after all, anyone can come up with a grand concept – is how well they’ve pulled it off. The Archer Trilogy is a remarkably stylistically and thematically cohesive arc of distinctly Scandinavian múm-meets-Postal Service synth-pop that’s by turns atmospheric and anthemic, frail and forceful, mysterious and vulnerable, but always beautiful – and all written, recording, and toured worldwide in a few years. The third and final instalment was released in January and while it doesn’t contain the same heart-bursting moments as “Fa-Fire” or “The Archer” from the middle part, it’s more than a satisfying Jedi to Part 2‘s Empire, veering into more thoughtful if marginally less immediate territory as it glides to the finish line.

As The Deer Tracks tour the complete Archer Trilogy across North America, David was kind enough to answer some questions via email about making a trilogy of records. They’re at The Silver Dollar tonight around midnight and you may recall I skipped The Flaming Lips at NXNE last year to see them play and don’t regret it a bit– so consider that an endorsement.

How far in advance did you plan out the three parts of the trilogy? Was it written as you went along, or was it a fully-conceived whole from the beginning?

We planned to do a trilogy from the start. We wanted to do something that would grow with and on to us over a longer period of time. We had the whole idea story behind it mapped out and then we deliberately took different paths to come up with the end result.

Did you have an actual narrative in mind to tie together the three (or four, counting Prologue) parts of “The Archer Trilogy”? If so, is it meant to be discernable to the listener?

If you listen to the whole thing I think everything falls into place what the whole idea with this trilogy is. That there is a deeper meaning to the four parts and that their bond is obvious. It is like an own microcosms with it’s universal cycle of life, death and foreverness.

Did you have a specific aesthetic you wanted stick to across the albums? Did you find yourselves having to shelve good ideas because they didn’t fit, did you make them fit, or did you let the work evolve as you wanted it to?

The work with this trilogy has been lovely, inspirational, brutal, mind twisting, haunting and everything else in between and beyond. To develop a trilogy of a three part recording series (+ an Prologue) was a big adventure. It helped us understand a lot about ourselves as musicians, friends, spiritually beings and as most of all, what it really is to have a musical bond with someone else.

Should fans expect your next work to sound different from The Archer Trilogy? Are there aspects to The Deer Tracks that you’re looking forward to exploring next?

If you truly believe that only your own imagination and musical mind can hold you back, anything is possible in a universe of creativity. Now we can’t wait to share our journey and discoverys with you on another album. That will probably take on a another shape and form both sound and music wise. Creativity and exploring is what we love the most. Repetition is not.

The Huffington Post and Minnesota Daily also have interviews with the band.

MP3: The Deer Tracks – “Dark Passenger”

The Mary Onettes are streaming the title track of their new album Hit The Waves, out March 19.

Stream: The Mary Onettes – “Hit The Waves”

Junip have released the first video from their new self-titled album, due out April 23.

Video: Junip – “Line Of Fire”

El Perro Del Mar has a new video from her latest album, Pale Fire.

Video: El Perro Del Mar – “I Was A Boy”

Swede-pop veterans Club 8 have announced a May 21 release date for their eighth album Above The City.

Elliphant is the stage name of one Elinor Olovosdotter, a new artist from Stockholm who’s another entry in the ever-expanding electropop field; she’s in town opening up for Twin Shadow at The Phoenix on June 7 so if you’re going or thinking about it, have a listen.

MP3: Elliphant – “Down On Life”
Video: Elliphant – “Live Till I Die”
Video: Elliphant – “Down On Life”

Rolling Stone interviews Iceage, in town for NXNE on June 15 and/or 16.

Paste has premiered the new video from Ólafur Arnalds’ forthcoming For Now I Am Winter, available in North America on April 2.

Video: Ólafur Arnalds – “Old Skin”

Drowned In Sound gets Phoenix bassist Deck d’Arcy on the horn to talk about their new album Bankrupt!, out April 22.

Melody’s Echo Chamber have put out a new video from last year’s self-titled debut.

Video: Melody’s Echo Chamber – “Crystallized”

Esquire offers some style tips from the career of Nick Cave. He will be dressed how he’s dressed at Massey Hall on March 23.

Monday, February 11th, 2013

Only The Wind

Ólafur Arnalds offers taste of Winter, perhaps unaware that Mother Nature has that covered

Photo By Marino ThorlaciusMarino ThorlaciusI didn’t actually bring back a lot of souvenirs from my trip to Iceland in Fall 2011; a super-warm Kaldi hat (which has served me quite well this Winter), a package of Cronions (though I should have brought back a case), a whackload of photos (ponies!), my first car accident (cars on the inside lane of their roundabouts have the right of way, fyi), and a deep appreciation for the music of Ólafur Arnalds.

I didn’t even catch the entirety of his set at Iceland Airwaves, but what I did see from the 25-year old electronic/classical composer – he on piano and laptop, leading a string quartet and accompanied by elegant animated birds – left a deep impression. I immediately got a copy of his 2010 album …And They Have Escaped The Weight Of Darkness – still one of my go-to escapist records, not least of all because it transports me back to Reykjavik, and have been eagerly awaiting the follow-up ever since.

That album is For Now I Am Winter and after offering the first preview track a few weeks ago, he’s now made a second track available to both listen to and play with, as it’s streaming as an interactive web application on his website that allows you to play with the mix in real time, turning channels on and off as you like. Obviously it sounds best as a fully-realized composition, but being able to isolate and analyze the finer details of his work also offers insights into the work. Both advance tracks represent a pretty familiar aspect of Arnalds’ work, but Winter should offer more than a few surprises as well – in addition to enlisting American composer Nico Muhly to assist on the orchestrations, Arnór Dan of Icelandic band Agent Fresco also contributes vocals – yes, vocals – to three tracks. For Now I Am Winter is out February 25 in Europe and April 2 in North America.

Stream: Ólafur Arnalds – “Only The Wind”
Stream: Ólafur Arnalds – “This Place Was A Shelter”

Sweden’s Deer Tracks will release their new album The Archer Trilogy, Pt. 3 tomorrow and are streaming the whole thing right now at Rdio. Yeah, you have to sign up for their streaming service but my understanding is that a) it’s great, and b) it’s free – at least for now and for Canadians; Americans I’m sure can find a similar deal. The Deer Tracks are here at The Silver Dollar on February 28.

MP3: The Deer Tracks – “W”
Stream: The Deer Tracks / The Archer Trilogy, Pt. 3

The Line Of Best Fit has debuted a stream of another track from the new Shout Out Louds record Optica, due out February 26. They play The Opera House on May 14.

Stream: Shout Out Louds – “Illusions”

Spin has an interview with German electro-gaze auteur Ulrich Schnauss, as well as a stream of his new album A Long Way To Fall, out tomorrow.

Stream: Ulrich Schnauss / A Long Way To Fall

Weird World Record Co has posted a stream of a new/old song from Melody’s Echo Chamber, the original version of the song that would be transmogrified into “IsThatWhatYouSaid” on last year’s self-titled debut.

Stream: Melody’s Echo Chamber – “Je Me Perds de Vue”

Clash talks to Veronica Falls about their new record Waiting For Something To Happen, out tomorrow. They play The Garrison on March 12.

Foals guitarist Jimmy Smith talks to Consequence Of Sound and frontman Yannis Philippakis to The Fly about their new record Holy Fire, in stores tomorrow.

James Blake has offered some context to the Spring tour that brings him to the Danforth Music Hall on May 4; Under The Radar reports his new album Overgrown will be out April 8 and the first video from it surfaced this weekend.

Video: James Blake – “Retrograde”

Hat tip to Gorilla Vs Bear for pointing out the HD video of Jessie Ware’s radio session for KCRW. She’s in town at The Opera House on April 6.

State has an interview with Frightened Rabbit, who also offer up a video session to The Line Of Best Fit. They’re at The Phoenix on March 31.

Magnet interviews The Joy Formidable for the position of guest editor of their website for this week. They play The Phoenix April 12.

DIY has details on the debut album from Ireland’s Little Green Cars. Absolute Zero will be out on May 13, which means they won’t have copies for sale when they play The Drake on March 28. The first video from it is also geoblocked in Canada/North America because sometimes people are awful.

Video: Little Green Cars – “Harper Lee”

Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds are streaming their new record Push The Sky Away at The Guardian ahead of its official release on February 19. They’ve also released a new video starring Ray Winstone and various seedy goings-on. Nick Cave and company are at Massey Hall on March 23.

Video: Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds – “Jubilee Street”
Stream: Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds / Push The Sky Away

The Line Of Best Fit has an interview with Shugo Tokumaru.

Friday, January 18th, 2013

Decorate

Get the weekend In Focus? with Shugo Tokumaru

Photo via FacebookFacebookI don’t know what you’ve got planned this weekend – me, I’m going to go buy a curtain rod – but if you think you’ll require a ray of musical sunshine to brighten up the proceedings or, conversely, need a soundtrack to an itinerary full up to the gills with fun, you could do far worse than to fire up the advance stream of Shugo Tokumaru’s new record In Focus?, available to stream now at Under The Radar.

It’s the Japanese composer and multi-instrumentalist’s fifth album, and like its predecessors its overflowing with creative instrumentation, chock full of mesmerizingly intricate pop compositions, and imbued with a childlike whimsy designed to beguile and delight. Its melodicism transcends any language barrier, and really – do you know how to say, “la la la” in Japanese? It’s “la la la”.

MP3: Shugo Tokumaru – “Decorate”
Video: Shugo Tokumaru – “Decorate”
Stream: Shugo Tokumaru / In Focus?

Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds have made a second track from their forthcoming Push The Sky Away available to preview by way of a lyric video. The album is out February 19 and they play Massey Hall on March 23.

Lyric Video: Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds – “Jubilee Street”

Aquarium Drunkard has posted a session with Melody’s Echo Chamber that you can download for your listening pleasure, perhaps while you read this interview with Melody Prochet at Tonedeaf.

The 405 reports that Phoenix are getting ready to release the follow-up to 2009’s absurdly successful Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix, and the record will be called Bankrupt!. Which the band hopefully are not.

Pitchfork checks in with Denmark’s Iceage about their forthcoming album You’re Nothing, due out February 19.

Under The Radar talks to Maria Lindén of I Break Horses about the highs and lows of her 2012, the latter of which included having to cancel their Fall North American tour due to lack of funds. On the plus side, they’re recording a new record this year and will hopefully be making up those aborted dates with new material to play.

The Deer Tracks are ready to mark the February 12 release of The Archer Trilogy Pt. 3 properly – which is to say with a North American tour that includes a February 28 date at The Silver Dollar. They were incredible at NXNE 2012 so you can be sure expectations are high for this show. They’ve also released the first video from the new album, premiering it along with the full routing of their Spring trek at All Things Go. Do catch them if it’s at all possible, and if you happen to make it over to their hometown of Gävle, Sweden, use this handy guide of bands to see they provided to CMJ.

MP3: The Deer Tracks – “W”
Video: The Deer Tracks – “Lazarus”

CBC Music talked to Gustaf Karlöf of Niki & The Dove ahead of their Canadian shows earlier this week.

The Line Of Best Fit has premiered the second video from the new Shout Out Louds album Optica, in stores February 26. They’re in town at The Opera House on May 14.

Video: Shout Out Louds – “Walking In Your Footsteps”

Junip have streamed the first track from their new self-titled album, due out April 23.

Stream: Junip – “Line Of Fire”

Ólafur Arnalds has premiered a sample from his next album For Now I Am Winter over at Drowned In Sound. The album is out February 25.

Stream: Ólafur Arnalds – “This Place Was A Shelter”