Posts Tagged ‘Here We Go Magic’

Tuesday, March 30th, 2010

SxSW 2010 Day Two A/V

Photo By Frank YangFrank YangFull writeup of the day over here.

Freelance Whales
– New York twee-popsters whose debut Weathervanes is being re-released on April 13, will be in town twice over the next while; at the El Mocambo on April 6 with Cymbals Eat Guitars and May 8 at the Mod Club with Shout Out Louds. NPR has a World Cafe session with the band, The San Francisco Examiner an interview and they’re keeping a tour diary over at Spinner.
Photos: Freelance Whales @ Eastbound & Found North Stage – March 18, 2010
MP3: Freelance Whales – “Generator 2nd Floor”
MySpace: Freelance Whales

Diamond Rings
– Toronto electro-glam solo artist is prepping his debut full-length Special Affections for release later this year.
Photos: Diamond Rings @ Eastbound & Found South Stage – March 18, 2010
MP3: Diamond Rings – “All Yr Songs”
Video: Diamond Rings – “All Yr Songs”
Video: Diamond Rings – “Wait & See”
MySpace: Diamond Rings

– Austin power trio continue to spread the word of last year’s Sunshower EP while working on a full-length follow-up.
Photos: Ume @ Eastbound & Found North Stage – March 18, 2010
MP3: Ume – “The Conductor”
MP3: Ume – “Pendulum”
MP3: Ume – “Wake”
Video: Ume – “The Conductor”
MySpace: Ume

– Los Angeles quartet will follow up last year’s Exquisite Corpse with a debut full-length due out later this year. Spinner has an interview.
Photos: Warpaint @ Eastbound & Found North Stage – March 18, 2010
MP3: Warpaint – “Elephants”
Video: Warpaint – “Stars”
Video: Warpaint – “Elephants”

Slow Club
– Sheffield duo whose giddy folk-pop debut Yeah, So? just got a North American release after coming out last Summer in the UK.
Photos: Slow Club @ Eastbound & Found South Stage – March 18, 2010
MP3: Slow Club – “It Doesn’t Have To Be Beautiful”
Video: Slow Club – “It Doesn’t Have To Be Beautiful”
Video: Slow Club – “Because We Are Dead”
Video: Slow Club – “Me & You”
Video: Slow Club – “Trophy Room”

The Morning Benders
– San Francisco quartet whose latest Big Echo shows they’ve discovered the joys of noise and drama to go with their unerring pop sensibility. They play the Drake Underground on April 14; Express Night Out and The San Francisco Examiner have conversations with the band.
Photos: The Morning Benders @ Eastbound & Found North Stage – March 18, 2010
MP3: The Morning Benders – “Promises”
MP3: The Morning Benders – “Waiting For A War”
Video: The Morning Benders – “Waiting For A War”
Video: The Morning Benders – “Damnit Anna”
Video: The Morning Benders – “Boarded Doors”
MySpace: The Morning Benders

Here We Go Magic
– New York outfit led by Luke Temple will release their new album Pigeons on June 8; download the first MP3 from Secretly Canadian. They play Lee’s Palace on April 27.
Photos: Here We Go Magic @ Eastbound & Found North Stage – March 18, 2010
Video: Here We Go Magic – “Fangela”

– Spanish electro-poppers bring their Summer-y new record Subiza – out already in the UK and out in North America on June 8 – to the Phoenix on April 3 in support of Miike Snow.
Photos: Delorean @ Eastbound & Found South Stage – March 18, 2010
Video: Delorean – “Stay Close”

Friday, March 19th, 2010

SxSW 2010 Day Two

Slow Club, The Morning Benders, Ume and more at SxSW

Photo By Frank YangFrank YangBeyond the pleasure of being able to attach one’s name to a lineup of great acts that you can (mostly) whole-heartedly endorse, one of the big perks of presenting a day show at SxSW is that it gives you an excuse to NOT run around the city all day from showcase to showcase. If you’ve done your job in curating well enough, there’s no real reason you’d want to be anywhere but your own show. And so most all of yesterday afternoon was spent at a parking lot just on the wrong side of I35 where Eastbound & Found, the party put together by myself and esteemed bloggers and sponsors.

Freelance Whales were generous enough to take one of the earliest spots, their peppy co-ed indie-pop almost the perfect thing to rouse the keeners who were on site at the break of noon. At times I find them almost a bit too chirpy but there’s usually a hook or melody waiting just around to corner to get me back onside. Their show at the El Mocambo with Cymbals Eat Guitars on April 6 is probably a bit too soon for me to need to see them again, but I’m perfectly happy to have them opening for Shout Out Louds at the Mod Club on May 8.

Down the hill at the south stage, Toronto’s Diamond Rings was letting his unicorn flag unfurl, dishing out electro beats perfectly suited to the bright, sunny weather – same songs but somehow different vibe from his Canadian Musicfest gig last week. The crowd was pretty sparse to begin with but as Freelance Whales’ set ended and people discovered there was a second stage (not the easiest to locate without signage), they filled in and danced. And there was even some celeb-spotting, as Little Boots – who’s even littler in person/off stage than you’d think – was in attendance and tweeted her approval.

Back at the mainstage, Austin’s own Ume were setting up to shred some faces – they were one of my top discoveries of last year’s fest so I was very pleased to have them playing our show, and not just because a daytime performance meant I’d have enough light to try and capture Lauren Larsen’s guitar heroics on film (well, digital sensor). As they’ve done every time I’ve seen them, they played a demolishing set of pure rock drawn from their Sunshower EP as well as new material that will hopefully be out sooner rather than later. The only difference from past shows was that Larsen’s axe-mangling didn’t end with her on her knees, strangling notes out of her Fender – the painful-looking skin marks on her legs made it clear that there’d already been a little too much of that before this show.

Next up were Los Angeles’ Warpaint, who despite taking a kind of meandering approach to their set – were they soundchecking? Jamming? Playing songs? – walked a very appealing line of musical experimentation and pop sensibilities. I was only able to stick around for a couple of songs, but was intrigued enough that their remaining shows for the week – and there were a lot of them still – all stayed on my schedule so I could hear some more. Odds are I won’t, but it won’t be for lack of trying. Or wanting to try.

Back down at the second stage was one of my picks for the party, Sheffield’s Slow Club, whose debut Yeah, So? has been one of my favourite debuts of the year (in North America, anyways – it came out in the UK last Summer). Evidently I wasn’t the only one won over by the drum-and-guitar duo, as there was a small but very enthused audience gathered for their set of wonderfully hepped-up folk-pop. Charles and Rebecca are maybe the most adorable pairing since Matt & Kim, and after simultaneously destroying their guitar amp and kick pedal respectively, took to the edge of the stage with acoustic guitars to sing out to their fans unamplified. Giddy and glorious.

I’d seen The Morning Benders back in February of last year and while I found their indie-pop stylings pleasant, with the requisite jangles and hooks, but not especially distinctive. With their new one Big Echo, however, they’ve not only raised the ante but bet the house – it’s a much more massive and interesting record; noisier and moodier than I’d have thought them capable of but still immensely pop at its core. Correspondingly, the live show was much more intense and volume-abusing than I’d expected. Most impressive. They are at the Drake on April 14.

As Here We Go Magic got started on the main stage, I could feel myself hitting a wall in terms of being able to concentrate on new music, or even stand up for any period of time. Their stuff required a little too much attention to properly appreciate, so after a few songs I wandered back down to the south stage where Spain’s Delorean were kicking up a mostly-instrumental electro-pop dance party. That held my interest for a little while, but the need to not be where I was became overwhelming and I had to hoof it back to the hotel to get my head together. Which, sadly, meant missing our headlining set with GZA AND the fact that Bill Murray apparently accepted my invitation and showed up. For serious, people.

Wednesday, March 10th, 2010

Eastbound & Found

Bloggers congregate in Austin, throw a party

Photo via Araba FilmsAraba FilmsIf there’s one thing Austin, Texas needs during Spring Break, it’s some live music. Particularly in the form of a day party. The past few years I’ve been very lucky to have been able to help put on some fantastic parties with some of my favourite blogger buds. And while the Hot Freaks marque has been put to bed for the time being, I’m very happy to be able to announce that You Ain’t No Picasso, My Old Kentucky Blog, Ultra 8201, Yours Truly and, uh, yours truly, will be presenting Eastbound & Found, a one-day, two-stage to-do that will be held on Thursday, March 18 at 1001 East 6th St – a location that’s a parking lot for 51 weeks of the year but on this occasion will be an epicenter of awesome.

What I like most about these blogger-assembled shows is how random the final results end up being. Without teaming up with a specific label, PR company or booking agency and just pursuing acts based on little more than a “what we like” mandate, we get shows that can veer from the sunny indie-pop of Freelance Whales to the insane guitar heroics of Austin’s own Ume, from the electro-glam of Diamond Rings (Toronto represent!) to giddy Anglo-folk duo Slow Club, right through to our headliner – GZA of the motherflipping Wu-Tang Clan. Eclectic? Yeah, a little.

This party is free and all-ages, though you do have to RSVP – information on that at the Sweet Leaf blog. Many many thanks go out to our sponsors Sweet Leaf Tea, Ziegenbock, Dos Lunas Tequila, Knuckle Rumbler and Car Toys for helping make this happen. And despite what the attached image from Jim Jarmusch’s Coffee & Cigarettes might imply, Bill Murray will NOT be making an appearance at the show. Unless he wants to. If any of you know Bill Murray, do let him know he’s invited?

The (almost) full lineup and set times are as follows:

Stage one:
12:15PM Ragen Fykes
1:10PM Freelance Whales
2:05PM Ume
3:00PM Warpaint
3:55PM The Morning Benders
4:50PM Here We Go Magic
5:45PM Maluca
7:00PM GZA

Stage two:
12:30PM Burnt Ones
1:25PM Diamond Rings
2:20PM Kid Sister
3:15PM Slow Club
4:10PM Danielson
5:05PM Delorean
6:00PM White Denim

MP3: Danielson – “Animal In Every Corner”
MP3: Diamond Rings – “All Yr Songs”
MP3: Freelance Whales – “Generator 2nd Floor”
MP3: The Morning Benders – “Promises”
MP3: Slow Club – “It Doesn’t Have To Be Beautiful”
MP3: Ume – “The Conductor”
MP3: Warpaint – “Elephants”
Video: GZA – “Liquid Swords”
Video: Here We Go Magic – “Fangela”
Video: Kid Sister – “Right Hand Hi”

And some concert news for Toronto folk NOT heading down to Texas next week – not content with playing two nights at The Horseshoe, The Black Lips have added a third local appearance during their visit. They’ll be doing an in-store at Sonic Boom on March 28 at 4PM; admission free with a canned good.

MP3: Black Lips – “Short Fuse”

Jakob Dylan has put together a new band to help perform his new solo record Women & Country, out April 10. They’re called Three Legs and you might know them better as a couple of women in country – Neko Case and Kelly Hogan. That got your attention, eh? Jacob Dylan & Three Legs will be at the Phoenix on April 25.

She & Him – yes, Zooey and Matt – will be hitting the road in support of Volume Two and are going to be at The Phoenix in Toronto on June 9. Tickets are $26.50, the album is out March 23 and the new video is just about the most adorable thing ever.

Video: She & Him – “In The Sun”

Stars have announced they will release their fifth studio album The Five Ghosts on June 22 – details at Chart.

Spinner talks to Metric in advance of their appearance at SxSW where they’ll be opening up for Muse at Stubb’s on the Friday night.

Broken Social Scene also talk to Spinner; they’re doing a couple of shows at SxSW and of course have that Toronto Islands show on June 19. Their new album Forgiveness Rock Record is out May 4.

Continuing on with the Spinner-SxSW interviews (there’s lots of them) – they chat with Venice Is Sinking, whose new album Sand & Lines will be out June 15.

Kunstlicher, The Georgia Straight, The Huffington Post and Spinner have interviews with Midlake. They’re at the Mod Club on May 25.

Spinner talks to The Uglysuit. They’re playing Lee’s Palace at 2AM on Friday night as part of Canadian Musicfest and their MySpace implies they’re making the most of their visit to Toronto with a bunch of other unofficial performances.

Spinner asks some pretty banal questions of Nicole Atkins & The Black Sea.

NPR has a World Cafe session with Holly Miranda.

Filter takes all of the fun out of The Bird & The Bee’s internet scavenger hunt for streams of their new Hall & Oates tribute album Guiltless Pleasures Volume 1: A Tribute To Daryl Hall And John Oates , out March 23.

Spinner and NME have collected a number of tributes from musicians for the fallen Mark Linkous of Sparklehorse. And a couple of worthy reads and listens from the Boston area – Buffalo Tom frontman Bill Janovitz has an essay and Sparklehorse cover at his blog Part-Time Man Of Rock while Bradley’s Almanac is sharing some thoughts and a recording of Sparklehorse’s last show in Boston from 2007.

MP3: Bill Janovitz – “Gold Day”

Friday, February 19th, 2010

Made To Disappear

The Twilight Sad loses bassist, finds tourmates, hits road

Photo By Frank YangFrank YangSome sad news out of Scotland this week when it was announced that Twilight Sad bassist Craig Orzel had decided to leave the band, effective immediately. He announced his departure in a blog post, though it’s not really clear what “waking up baw deep in a granny” means and if that had any effect on his decision.

Though losing a founding member is always tough on a band, the rest of the band are clearly ready to soldier on, with another single from last year’s Forget The Night Ahead – “The Room” – set for release on March 29 and a massive North American tour announced for the month of May. Unlike their Fall 2009 tour which saw them teaming up with their countrymen, this jaunt will pair them up with an outfit from considerably further away – Japan’s epic instrumentalists Mono. They have a new live album and film coming out on April 29 entitled Holy Ground: NYC Live with the Wordless Music Orchestra.

I’ve always wanted to see Mono – yes they’ve been through town a number of times, I just haven’t gone – and am always happy to be aurally assaulted by The Twilight Sad, so you can consider May 26, when the tour winds its way through Lee’s Palace in Toronto, circled on my calendar.

MP3: The Twilight Sad – “Reflection Of The Television”
MP3: Mono – “Follow The Map”
MP3: Mono – “Ashes In The Snow”

Other concert announcements this week include an in-store triple bill during Canadian Musicfest at Criminal Records. On March 13, they’ll play host to Aidan Knight, Dan Mangan and Hollerado, playing at 5PM, 6PM and 7PM respectively. As far as their festival showcases go, Knight is at the Global Backpackers Hostel on March 12, Mangan is at the Great Hall on the 11th and the Courthouse on the 12th and Hollerado at the Horseshoe on the 11th. CTV has an Olympics-themed interview with Mangan.

MP3: Hollerado – “Juliette”
MP3: Dan Mangan – “Road Regrets”
MP3: Aidan Knight – “Jasper”

Adam Green has a date at the Mod Club on April 17 in support of his new record Minor Love, tickets $13.50. Clash, The Line Of Best Fit and Spinner have interviews.

Video: Adam Green – “What Makes Him Act So Bad”

On April 18, the Drake Underground will welcome White Hinterland and Dosh, both of whom have new records en route. White Hinterland’s Kairos is out March 9 while Dosh’s Tommy will be available on April 13.

MP3: White Hinterland – “Icarus”
MP3: White Hinterland – “No Logic”
MP3: Dosh – “Subtractions”

Here We Go Magic and White Rabbits are teaming up for a Spring tour that will stop in at Lee’s Palace on April 27. Here We Go Magic’s new album is due out sometime in the Spring; White Rabbits are still working last year’s It’s Frightening.

MP3: White Rabbits – “Percussion Gun”
Video: Here We Go Magic – “Fangela”

Northern Ireland’s Two Door Cinema Club will wrap up a North American tour with a May 17 date at Wrongbar, tickets $10 in advance. Their debut album Tourist History is out on April 27, and if you like mondo-catchy, jangly-dancey guitar pop, it/they should probably be on your radar.

MP3: Two Door Cinema Club – “I Can Talk”
MP3: Two Door Cinema Club – “Something Good Can Work”

Sharon Jones & The Dap Kings are back with a new record in I Learned the Hard Way, out April 6, and will be hitting the road, with a May 25 date at the Sound Academy in Toronto – tickets $25.

Behold the new clip from Caribou’s new album Swim, due out April 20.

Video: Caribou – “Odessa”

Phantogram’s Josh Carter tries to describe what they do to The Washington Examiner. Find out for yourself at the Drake Underground on Saturday night.

El Perro Del Mar’s Sarah Assbring talks to NOW about the Lou Reed influence on her latest record Love Is Not Pop. She is at the Mod Club on Sunday night.

The Daily Record talks to Scott Hutchison of Frightened Rabbit about The Winter Of Mixed Drinks, due out March 9. They are at the Opera House on May 4.

BBC6 talks to Friendly Fires about working on their second album.