Posts Tagged ‘Lucinda Williams’

Monday, October 20th, 2008


R.E.M.'s Murmur being reissued

Photo via Murmur

Those fancy double-disc deluxe edition reissue sets have become fairly commonplace recently as the labels try to take advantage of the type of people willing to buy the same album over and over again while they’re still alive, but that doesn’t mean they’re not – at least sometimes – getting it right. Case in point, the announcement that R.E.M.’s debut album Murmur will be getting said treatment this Fall.

Pitchfork has your specifics, but basically you’re looking at the standard remastered album on disc one – maybe the same remaster job as the last couple times Murmur was re-released? – and for the second disc, a complete live show recorded here in Toronto circa 1983. The gig was held at a no-longer existent dive called Larry’s Hideaway which if memory serves (and by memory I mean Google – I was 8 at the time and wouldn’t have had the experience with Toronto’s live music dives that I do now) was located just a few blocks from here at Carlton and Jarvis. Anyone know if the place still exists in some form and if so, what it is now? I’m curious.

The Murmur deluxe edition is out November 25. Update: Blurt has some thoughts on what they view as a flawed reissue (thanks to Eugene for the link).

Video: R.E.M. – “Radio Free Europe”

Though guitarist Damian Cox has recovered from his stroke well enough to blog, he’s not sure if or when he’ll be able to play guitar again so as a result, The Long Blondes have called it a day. Details at NME. Singles, the compilation of their early singles, is out in the UK today.

MP3: The Long Blondes – “Once And Never Again”
MP3: The Long Blondes – “Here Comes The Serious Bit”
MP3: The Long Blondes – “Guilt”

Relix has specifics on M Ward’s new record Hold Time, due out February 17.

Pitchfork has an interview with a surprisingly lucid and non-crazy pills Kevin Barnes. Of Montreal’s new one Skeletal Lamping is out tomorrow and they’re at the Queen Elizabeth Theatre on October 28.

The Minneapolis Star-Tribune talks to Lucinda Williams.

Pop Reckoning and Paste interview Rachael Yamagata.

Sloan’s Chris Murphy talks to The Halifax Chronicle-Herald. They’re at the Air Canada Centre on Wednesday night.

So while I usually try and actually get a substantive post up for Mondays, this week will instead kick off only the slim bits above and a weak-ass apology. Rather than actually do any listening or writing this weekend, I was instead coding, trying to get a fairly significant upgrade to this here site working and while it’s tantalizingly close, it’s not there yet. Maybe tomorrow. Maybe the day after. Hopefully before I leave for New York, at the very least.

Thursday, October 16th, 2008

Sing A Song

Photo ByAutumn De WildeSo obviously I’m on record as having thought that Rilo Kiley’s last record (and according to some, their last record) Under The Black Light was a massive disappointment. It sounded like both principals were disinterested and just phoning it in, and made me think that maybe frontwoman Jenny Lewis’ solo career – at that point consisting only of the rather lovely and understated country-soul gem Rabbit Fur Coat – was going to be the actual way forward.

Which put her second solo effort, Acid Tongue, under that much more scrutiny. Was the weak and indifferent songwriting on Black Light an aberration or had the wellspring of inspiration that had served so well up to that point actually dried up? Well, it’s definitely a better record than Blacklight, but coming from me that’s not necessarily saying much. It thankfully eschews the genre-hopping of that last Rilo Kiley record and returns again to the rootsier trappings that suits Lewis’ voice best, though not in as quiet a manner as Rabbit Fur Coat. Acid Tongue is a bolder, brassier record with its share of rollicking moments, but what it gains in energy over the first solo record, it loses in vulnerability.

As her success has grown, it seems Lewis’ willingness to expose herself in her songwriting has diminished or what does make it through is thoroughly encrypted. And that’s fine, emotionally naked, heart on sleeve songwriting isn’t for everyone but Lewis has indulged before and the results have been stirring. So instead of a confessional, she’s enlisted a slew of guest stars – Elvis Costello, M Ward and Zooey Deschanel among them – and hosted a party instead. A party where the theme is loose but impeccably played, ’70s-style country-rock. And parties are great, everyone likes parties, but I’ve always been the sort who preferred the quiet 3AM conversations that follow when things have died down.

The AV Club, The Guardian, The List, Blurt, The Independent and The Skinny talk to Lewis about her new record.

MP3: Jenny Lewis – “Acid Tongue”
MySpace: Jenny Lewis

Feist talks to The Winnipeg Sun about visiting the Arctic. She visits Massey Hall on November 1 and the Air Canada Centre on November 3.

Paste talks to Lucinda Williams.

The Denver Post and Colorado Daily Q&A Stephin Merritt of The Magnetic Fields.

Chart talks to Matthew Sweet.

The McGill Tribune interviews Travis Nelson of Okkervil River.

Gotham Acme talks to Joey Burns of Calexico. They’re at the Phoenix on November 18 and with original support act Bowerbirds having cancelled on account of exhaustion, the opener will now be Cuff The Duke.

In response to my “nothing to write about” comment yesterday, Radio Free Canuckistan gently reminded me that The Awkward Stage, who released the wholly underappreciated Slimming Mirrors, Flattering Lights earlier this year, are at the Horseshoe tonight as part of a west coast-acular bill with Said The Whale, Vancougar and Sylvie. Pulse Niagara has an interview with Awkward frontman Shane Nelken, The Toronto Star features Sylvie.

MP3: The Awkward Stage – “Anime Eyes”
MP3: Vancougar – “Obvious”
MP3: Sylvie – “Please Make It Home”