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Posts Tagged ‘House Of Love’

Wednesday, November 20th, 2013

It Is What It Is

Review of Blood Orange’s Cupid Deluxe

Photo By Stacey MarkStacey MarkTo say that following the musical career of Dev Hynes is an adventure is rather an understatement. Starting out with the deliberately sophomoric art-punk Test Icicles, he recast himself as an orch-folk troubadour on Falling Off The Lavender Bridge, his 2008 solo album under the Lightspeed Champion name. It was an identity he quickly found himself outgrowing, his second and last record in that guise – 2010’s Life Is Sweet! Nice To Meet You – had its share of high points but felt unfocused, like at a creative crossroads. Focus came with another new identity, Blood Orange, and 2011’s Coastal Grooves – a stripped-down and decidedly solo soul/disco record that sounded made in and for the bedroom that was criminally overlooked.

But crucially, while refining and redefining his own artistic identity, Hynes was becoming a highly sought-after producer, particularly after becoming Solange Knowles’ co-writer, producer, and sideman. That all-consuming role through most of this year, not to mention his other production duties, made it unclear if he’d be able to return to his own work anytime soon but somehow he still found time to not only record and release his second Blood Orange album Cupid Deluxe, out this week.

The most marked difference between Cupid and its predecessor is the sheer number of hands on deck. Coastal Grooves was entirely Hynes’ show, a fact emphatically made by his live shows – but Cupid finds Hynes more than happy to be allowing the likes of Chairlift’s Caroline Polachek, Friends’ Samantha Urbani, Dirty Projectors’ David Longstreth from his indie rock world and Despot, Skepta, and Clams Casino from his hip-hop world take centre stage while he remains the producer and songwriter running the show. And that show is akin to a dazzlingly diverse r&b revue built around themes of both alienation and community in New York City, coupling heartfelt sentiment to slick grooves.

Dev Hynes has been making music now for almost a decade, and what in isolation might seem like random and disparate creative shifts, when viewed as a whole, paint the picture of an impressively complex and immensely talented artist. Cupid Deluxe is, thus far, the most cohesive assemblage of his gifts – ironic, since it overtly showcases him the least. I personally would have liked to have his guitarwork given a little more prominence – the man can shred, as anyone who’s ever seen him live can attest – but for the time being, the brilliant missed riff key change at 2:43 of “Uncle ACE” will keep me going.

Hynes talks influences with The New York Times and is the cover feature of The Fader, for whom he’s also assembled hour-long mixtape containing new material. But if you’re waiting on tour dates to support the new record, don’t hold your breath.

Video: Blood Orange – “Time Will Tell”
Video: Blood Orange – “Chamakay”

Noisey has premiered the video for the title track of Rose Elinor Dougall’s new EP Future Vanishes, out officially this week.

Video: Rose Elinor Dougall – “Future”

NME has got the new video from Beady Eye, taken from their second album BE which is apparently getting a North American release this week because North Americans have been clamouring for it…?

Video: Beady Eye – “Soul Love”

Rolling Stone is streaming another new song from Kele’s forthcoming Heartbreaker solo EP, out November 25.

Stream: Kele – “God Has A Way”

The Guardian and Drowned In Sound talk to Welsh singer-songwriter Cate Le Bon; she’s in town at The Drake Underground on January 21.

NME has details on the new album from Maxïmo Park, entitled Too Much Information and due out February 3. They’ve released a video for the first single, which you can also download in exchange for an email address from their website.

Video: Maxïmo Park – “Brain Cells”

Fanfarlo have announced details of their third studio album: Let’s Go Extinct will be out February 10, and of course there’s a trailer.

Trailer: Fanfarlo / Let’s Go Extinct

The Guardian talks to Lily Allen about her impending return to music with a separate piece about the brouhaha surrounding her comeback video.

Anna Calvi lists off ten life-changing albums for MusicRadar.

Metro has an interview with M.I.A., who has released a new video from her latest, Matangi.

Video: M.I.A. – “Y.A.L.A.”

Consequence Of Sound interviews Charli XCX.

Little Boots has made a couple of extended edits of songs from Nocturnes available to download via HungerTV.

MP3: Little Boots – “Broken Record” (Nocturnal version)
MP3: Little Boots – “Strangers” (Nocturnal version)

Franz Ferdinand salute Australia with a cover of The Go-Betweens in a video session for Triple J. They’ve also released a new official video from Right Thoughts, Right Words, Right Action.

Video: Franz Ferdinand – “Bullet”
Video: Franz Ferdinand – “Was There Anything I Could Do?” (live)

Black Book interviews CHVRCHES and The Alternate Side welcomes them for a session.

Drowned In Sound gets a look at Summer Camp’s tools of the trade (read: their musical gear).

The Huffington Post gets some EDM smack talk of out reigning Mercury Prize champ James Blake.

A Music Blog, Yea? talks to drummer Rick McMurray of Ash.

BrooklynVegan interviews Johnny Marr.

The Quietus revisits the first House Of Love album on the occasion of its 25th anniversary.

Under The Radar talks to Mark Gardener and Andy Bell of Ride about the enduring legacy of their debut album Nowhere.

Thursday, July 25th, 2013

Vandals

An introduction to Arthur Beatrice

Photo by Richard Round TurnerRichard Round TurnerYou know what’s awful? Even though London quartet Arthur Beatrice have been on my radar for a little while now, I didn’t make the connection between their name and the late, great Golden Girl until about half an hour before writing this sentence. Not that it’s relevant in any way, I’m just amazed that I didn’t see it earlier.

Assumptions that the cheekiness of their name would imply a jokey band are sorely misplaced, though. Although evidence of their first two singles – “Midland” and “Charity”, released last year – have curiously been stricken from the internet, their just-released debut EP Carter, which is available to stream via Under The Radar, makes a strong first impression. It offers just three songs and a remix but strongly establishes their aesthetic, which evokes the danceability of ’90s British house but rendered with the instruments of vintage soul and the sultry boy-girl vocals reminiscent of The xx, though forgoing their icy detachment for something much more warm-blooded. There’s no such thing as a guaranteed formula for success, but if you were to try and come up with one, you could do much worse than theirs.

One assumes that a full-length album is in the works. Maybe those two redacted songs will resurface there?

Video: Arthur Beatrice – “Carter”
Stream: Arthur Beatrice / Carter

Under The Radar talks to Palma Violets, who’re back in town August 3 as part of The Grove Festival lineup.

The Vaccines are streaming another new tune from their forthcoming Melody Calling EP over at NME. That comes out August 12 and they support Mumford & Sons at The Molson Amphitheatre on August 26.

Stream: The Vaccines – “Everybody’s Gonna Let You Down”

NME gets Bloc Party bassist Gordon Moakes to chime in on the whole hiatus/no hiatus thing following the release of their new EP Nextwave Sessions on August 13.

Stereogum have got the whole video of a show Franz Ferdinand played for David Letterman’s audience when they were on last week, and they’ve also released a new official video from the new record Right Thoughts, Right Words, Right Action. It’s out August 27 and they play The Kool Haus October 24.

Video: Franz Ferdinand – “Love Illumination”

Rolling Stone declares Scotland’s synth-pop heroes CHVRCHES a band to watch and offers a live performance video as proof, while Gigwise has a two-part interview with the band. Their debut The Bones of What You Believe is out September 24 and they play the Danforth Music Hall on September 15.

Manic Street Preachers have made another track from their forthcoming album Rewind The Film available to stream; it’s out September 16.

Stream: Manic Street Preachers – “Show Me The Wonder”

Filter gets to know English newcomers Peace, who will support Two Door Cinema Club at the Danforth Music Hall on October 15.

Elvis Costello and The Roots have offered up the first official sample of their collaborative album Wise Up Ghost by way of video; the record is out September 17.

Video: Elvis Costello & The Roots – “Walk Us Uptown”

Slicing Up Eyeballs reports that The House Of Love will be playing a couple of intimate London shows in November for the purpose of releasing a live CD/DVD set next year.

Tone Deaf talks to Tom Smith of Editors.

Beady Eye hope to sway some of the generally unfavourable response to their second album BE with a new video full of nudity. Because everyone likes nudity, right?

Video: Beady Eye – “Shine A Light”

Alphabet Pony chats with Victoria Hesketh of Little Boots.

Interview talks to Johnny Marr.

The Daily Swarm has words with Savages guitarist Gemma Thompson.

Thursday, April 4th, 2013

Gimme Shelter

England’s oldest hit makers The Rolling Stones are coming to town and other notes from abroad

Photo By Mark SeligerMark SeligerApologies for going for the low-hanging fruit with this one, but I don’t have the time or energy to squeeze out something more interesting. So you get this. And pro tip: providing a current photo with credit really goes a long way towards leading off a post.

Anyways, The Rolling Stones – perhaps you’ve heard of them – finally announced their long-rumoured, basically inevitable 50th anniversary North American tour yesterday, and while it’s only nine dates long, at least for now, Toronto makes the cut – the Stones will be at the Air Canada Centre on May 25, with tickets running a not surprising but still eye-popping $147.25 to $597.25, on sale April 8 at 10AM. Update: And a second show has been added for June 6. No, it’s not any cheaper.

The Chicago Tribune has a well-timed interview with Mick Jagger where such topics as, “why arenas and not stadiums?”, “why so expensive?”, and “what special guests might we expect?” are covered – the last of which was already covered earlier in the day when it was confirmed that former Stones guitarist Mick Taylor would be making appearances with the band on all of the North American dates – good news for those for whom the early ’70s is their favourite Stones era. And who have lots and lots of money to spend on a single concert.

Video: The Rolling Stones – “Brown Sugar” (live)

To celebrate the North American release of For Now I Am Winter this week, Ólafur Arnalds submitted to an “Ask Me Anything” at Reddit, is the subject of features at Interview and Live High Five, and has a video session up at Yahoo!.

The Quietus, The Guardian, and Digital Spy talk to Guy Chadwick of The House Of Love, whose new album She Paints Words In Red was finally released this week.

Exclaim and BBC America talk to Jessie Ware, who has also compiled and annotated a mixtape for The AV Club. The makes her Toronto debut at The Opera House on April 6 and releases Devotion in North America on April 16.

James Blake has released a new video from Overgrown, out next week on April 9. He plays The Danforth Music Hall on May 4.

Video: James Blake – “Voyeur”

Pitchfork have the advance stream of Shaking The Habitual, the new opus from The Knife, while Filter has an interview. The album is due out next week on April 9.

Stream: The Knife / Shaking The Habitual

The Joy Formidable talks Record Store Day – for which they’re releasing a cover of Springsteen’s “Badlands” as a b-side on a 7″ – with Rolling Stone and answers other questions for Columbus Live, The Chicago Sun-Times, and London On The Inside. They play The Phoenix on April 12.

Charli XCX has rolled out a new video from her debut True Romance, due out April 16. She opens up for Marina & The Diamonds at Echo Beach on May 23.

Video: Charli XCX – “What I Like”

Spin, MTV, Rolling Stone, WNYC, and Stereogum talk to Phoenix about their new album Bankrupt!, which is out April 23.

And that provides a good segue into some developments with The Grove Fest that Phoenix were supposed to headline in Niagara-On-The-Lake on August 3. You’ll note the use of the past tense there, and that’s because it’s no longer happening in Niagara-On-The-Lake, but as of yesterday was moved to Garrison Commons at Fort York in Toronto, with the lineup being trimmed of Macklemore, Pretty Lights, and Bob Mould and ticket prices being dropped to $59.50. And before you chalk it up to a dearth of Phoenix and Hot Chip fans in western New York, this Hamilton Spectator piece hints that it may have been as much NIMBY-ism as soft sales responsible for the relocation and doubling-down on the GTA market. In any case, it’s a bit of 416 festival nostalgia as the lineup that felt mostly like a Rogers Picnic is now enjoying some V Fest-esque drama.

Consequence Of Sound interviews Palma Violets, who are in town at Lee’s Palace on May 3 and again on August 3 at Garrison Common as part of the relocated Grove Fest.

Clash, The Province, Vancouver Sun, The Guardian, and Beatroute have interviews with Billy Bragg, in town at The Danforth Music Hall on May 3.

Cosmopolitan and The Line Of Best Fit talk to Victoria Hesketh of Little Boots about her new album Nocturnes, out May 6.

Primal Scream have released a new video from the forthcoming More Light, out May 13.

Video: Primal Scream – “It’s Alright, It’s OK”

Still Corners have released a new video from their forthcoming Strange Pleasures, out May 7. And their previously-announced June 14 NXNE date is now the endpoint of a full North American tour – dates at Spin.

Video: Still Corners – “Berlin Lovers”

Exclaim talks to Savages ahead of the May 7 release of their debut Silence Yourself.

A Music Blog, Yea chats with Stornoway, in town at The Horseshoe on May 9.

Le Blogotheque has an Empty Space video session with Foals. They play The Kool Haus on May 11.

DIY gets a look at the making of Desire Lines from Camera Obscura’s Tracyanne Campbell. The album is out June 4 and they play Garrison Common for the Toronto Urban Roots Fest on July 4.

The xx stop in at NPR for a World Cafe session. They stop in for a big-ass show at Downsview Park on June 6.

Daytrotter have posted a session with Bloc Party, in town at Garrison Common as part of the Field Trip fest on June 8.

Spinner, Spin, and Consequence Of Sound chat with CHVRCHES, who’ve just premeired a new video from their debut full-length, due in September. They’re at The Hoxton on June 12.

Video: CHVRCHES – “Now Is Not The Time”

DIY, Clash, and Artrocker profile Peace, coming to town as part of NXNE on June 15.

At this point, I suspect only Chris Olley knows on any given day if Nottingham’s Six By Seven are a going concern or not, but for the moment it appears they once again are with a new album in Peace And Love And Sympathy slated for a June 10 release. And while it’s been a while since they’ve done anything really memorable since 2004’s :04, the two sample tracks they’ve got available to stream sound way more intense and focused on either Artists Cannibals Poets Thieves or If Symptoms Persist, Kill Your Doctor – “Truce” is all kinds of angry, and an angry Six By Seven is a potent Six By Seven. And if you’re not familiar with this criminally underappreciated band, treat yourself to a free compilation of what band principal Olley has been up to over the past decade. Or just listen to “Bochum” on repeat all day.

Stream: Six By Seven – “Sympathy”
Stream: Six By Seven – “Truce”

Polly Scattergood has a video for the first single from her forthcoming album Arrows, slated for June 14 release.

Video: Polly Scattergood – “Wanderlust”

For those waiting for some east coast Bat For Lashes dates in support of The Haunted Man, good news and bad news. The good news is word has it she’s here on September 2. Bad news is it’s at the Molson Amphitheatre opening for Depeche Mode. Now if you’re a Depeche Mode fan as well, great. If not, then… oh well.

MP3: Bat For Lashes – “Oh Yeah”

NPR welcomes Richard Thompson for a World Cafe session.

PopMatters has excerpted some of The Stone Roses: War And Peace, the new book about – wait for it – The Stone Roses.

NPR serves up a video session with Frightened Rabbit.

Spinner talks riot grrl with Kate Nash.

The Line Of Best Fit has a video session with Melody’s Echo Chamber.

A Heart Is A Spade interviews The Deer Tracks.

Friday, March 15th, 2013

What We Done?

Austra album news and giveaway lead weekly wrap-up

Photo By Norman WongNorman WongIncreasingly, Friday posts are for clearing off the decks of whatever hasn’t gone out earlier in the week, but that doesn’t mean the content isn’t quality – this ain’t no fire sale, son. But it also doesn’t mean I’m not giving some stuff away. Because I am.

Earlier this week, Toronto electro-operatic sensation Austra announced details of their second album, to be entitled Olympia and due out June 18. And because they believe in deeds, not words, they also made the first single from the new record available to stream. And if you want to hear more new material – or are now in the mood to hear some Feel It Break material – you’ll probably want to be at The Danforth Music Hall next Saturday night, March 23, for their late-add Canadian Musicfest performance.

Though a limited number of festival wristbands and passes will be admitted, lineups and attendant stresses can be eliminated with advance tickets. Those are going for $24 in advance, but courtesy of Embrace, I’ve got four pairs of passes to give away for the show. To enter, email me at contests@chromewaves.net with “I want to see Austra” in the subject line and your full name in the body and have that me by midnight, March 20.

Stream: Austra – “Home”

The Line Of Best Fit talks to Alan Sparhawk of Low, who are in town at The Great Hall on Saturday night and release their new record The Invisible Way on Tuesday.

Brett Anderson of Suede chats with DIY. Their new record Bloodsports is out on March 18.

Brightest Young Things has an interview with Philip Ekstrom of The Mary Onettes about their new album Hit The Waves, due out next Tuesday, March 19. Ekstrom also proves game for mini Swede-pop summits, with The Line Of Best Fit having Sambassadeur’s Joachim Läckberg interview Ekstrom and vice-versa – Sambassadeur’s new record is due out later this year – and Q gets his label boss – Johan Angergård of Labrador – to ask him some questions.

Southern Souls has a video session with July Talk, taking part in Canandian Musicfest at Lee’s Palace on March 21.

The National Post has a feature interview with Nick Cave; he leads The Bad Seeds into Massey Hall on March 23.

The Strokes have rolled out the first video from their forthcoming Comedown Machine, out March 26.

Video: The Strokes – “All The Time”

The first video from The House Of Love’s forthcoming She Paints Words In Red – the one that went up last month and was almost immediately pulled – is back up, hopefully for good. The album is out April 1.

Video: The House Of Love – “A Baby Got Back On Its Feet”

In addition to announcing a local tour that includes a free show at the Parkdale Library on April 27, Dusted have made an unreleased track available to download and another rarity available to stream.

MP3: Dusted – “No Trouble”
Stream: Dusted – “In Yr Skull”

Exclaim and MTV Hive have interviews with Rachel Zeffira, coming to town as part of a two-date North American tour on May 2 at The Drake Underground.

MTV Hive talks to Airick Wooded of Doldrums. He’ll be at The Horseshoe on May 11.

I don’t know that a musical from the pens of Stephen King and John Mellencamp is something that I’d necessarily want to know existed, let alone hear, but that the Ghost Brothers of Darkland County soundtrack features performances from the likes of Neko Case and Elvis Costello, I can’t not pay a little attention. The album is out June 4 and a couple tracks are available to stream now. Neko Case is in town at the Toronto Urban Roots Fest at Garrison Commons on July 7.

Stream: Neko Case – “That’s Who I Am”
Stream: Elvis Costello – “That’s Me”

The 405 meets Ra Ra Riot, coming back to town on June 8 for Field Trip at Garrison Commons.

Ira Kaplan of Yo La Tengo compiles a list of his favourite albums for The Quietus. They’ll be at Garrison Commons for TURF on July 7.

The Von Pip Musical Express brings the good news that Nicole Atkins has just about completed her third album, entitled Slow Phaser, and while specific release details are still forthcoming, a first track from it is available to stream.

Stream: Nicole Atkins – “Red Ropes”

The AV Club is running a series of video session musical tributes to various states, and have kicked off in Texas – of course – with Iron & Wine’s Sam Beam offering an unreleased Texas-themed song in the first one and Shearwater’s Jonathan Meiburg covering Roy Orbison in another.

Also in interesting covers: Joanna Newsom tackling a Sandy Denny song in a performance for a Los Angeles clothing designer; watch the video at Spin and get a little background on the session at Style.com.

Exclaim talks to Mark Perro of The Men.

If you hadn’t heard, School Of Seven Bells guitarist Benjamin Curtis was recently diagnosed with T-cell Lymphoblastic Lymphoma. While treatable, they have set up a website through which they are soliciting support and donations to help cover the costs. Help out if you can.

Robyn Hitchcock discusses his new album Love From London with Spinner.

Wednesday, March 13th, 2013

It Starts And Ends With You

Stream a little stream of Suede, Billy Bragg, Stornoway, and more

Photo By Roger SargentRoger SargentI find it equally amusing/confounding that veteran artists who return after long hiatuses or breakups are almost always initially met with open arms – my favourite band when I was a teenager is back! – but it’s rarely long before that goodwill starts turning a bit sour. Tour the greatest hits that everyone thinks they want to hear, and it’s all “you’re just cashing in on my nostalgia!” but have the audacity to record new material, and with few exceptions the best they can hope for is a tepid, “it’s not as good as your old stuff” or “it just sounds like you”. Which is hilarious because if it didn’t sound like them, the complaint would be, “it doesn’t sound like you”. Who else should they sound like? And how many revolutions do they owe you? 33-1/3 or 45, but that’s it.

I’ve heard the “more of the same” argument leveled against recent releases by My Bloody Valentine and David Bowie – both very good records, by my reckoning – and expect to hear it again now that the release of the first Suede album in over a decade – Bloodsports – is out next week. No, it’s not a return to the glam-rock drama and decadence of their first two albums, nor does it have the, “we’re not dead” defiance that made post-Butler Coming Up such a surprise. It doesn’t even meet the bar of “amazing” that Brett Anderson had said would be needed for the sessions to be released. But it is concise, hooky, and energized in a way that neither Head Music or A New Morning were, and most importantly its swagger and romanticism feel authentically Suede in a way no one else has done in many, many years. And that’s all I would have asked for.

NPR has an advance stream of the new record, and Clash has an interview with the band. And tangentially, Louder Than War has an interview with former Suede guitarist-turned-producer Bernard Butler about what he’s up to these days.

MP3: Suede – “Barriers”
Video: Suede – “It Starts And Ends With You”
Stream: Suede / Bloodsports

In other advance streaming news, CBC Music has a Q&A with Billy Bragg as well as a stream of his new record Tooth and Nail, in stores next week. He’s at The Danforth Music Hall on May 4, and is also interviewed by Music Radar. Update: Apparently the CBC stream is geoblocked to Canada; others should try The Quietus and their Soundcloud-powered stream.

Video: Billy Bragg – “No One Knows Anything Anymore”
Stream: Billy Bragg / Tooth and Nail

PopMatters has got an advance stream of the new Stornoway record Tales From Terra Firma; it’s out March 19 and they play The Horseshoe on May 9. There’s also an interview with frontman Oli Steadman at Music Radar.

Video: Stornoway – “Knock Me On The Head”
Stream: Stornoway / Tales From Terra Firma

Rolling Stone is hosting the advance stream for Black Rebel Motorcycle Club’s new album Specter Af The Feast, out officially on March 19, while Elle has a quick chat with drummer Leah Shapiro. They’ll tour the new album through the Kool Haus on May 9.

Stream: Black Rebel Motorcycle Club / Specter At The Feast

Belfast post-rock instrumentalists And So I Watch You From Afar are streaming their new album All Hail Bright Futures, out March 19, over at Noisey.

Stream: And So I Watch You From Afar / All Hail Bright Futures

And finally for advance listens, NOT out next week but already available to stream is the first album in seven years from The House Of Love. She Paints Words In Red will be out April 1.

Stream: The House Of Love / She Paints Words In Red

Beatroute and The Province talk to Efterklang, coming to town for a Canadian Musicfest show at The Mod Club on March 21.

Ólafur Arnalds offers The Quietus a list of his favourite albums. For Now I Am Winter gets a North American release April 2.

The Knife have released a second, characteristically batshit video from their new record Shaking The Habitual, out April 9.

Video: The Knife – “A Tooth For An Eye”

DIY and Clash have features on Iceage, coming to town for NXNE on June 15 and 16.

Empire Of The Sun have finally, improbably, announced the release of their second album – Ice On The Dune will be out in June, and to get you excited there’s the inevitable album trailer.

Trailer: Empire Of The Sun / Ice On The Dune