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Posts Tagged ‘Nada Surf’

Wednesday, November 14th, 2012

Stupid Things

Yo La Tengo are coming to town and this photo is hilarious

Photo via TwitterTwitterYo La Tengo haven’t quite spilled the beans on their thirteenth studio album, besides to acknowledge it exists, that recent single “Stupid Things” will appear on it albeit in a different version, that it was produced by Tortoise’s John McEntire, that it’ll be out in late January – the smart money is on the 29th, since the last week of the month is typically when the year’s first big releases are slated – and that a North American tour – of which only a few dates have been revealed – would follow. And while a tweet yesterday implied that today was the day for revelations, details on the Toronto show came yesterday – and so here they are: Hoboken’s finest will be at The Phoenix on February 9 – their first visit since October 2009, not counting their “Sounds Of Science” performance here in April. Tickets for that are $25 in advance and go on sale Friday.

While on the topic, I just finished reading Big Day Coning: Yo La Tengo and The Rise of Indie Rock. You might wonder how interesting a bio of a band that has been rather resolutely drama-free over its career could be, but it’s the understatedness of their story – plus the greatness of their music – and how it intertwines with the transformation of the underground to college to alternative to indie rock scene that makes it an interesting read.

I had hoped to get up this morning and find all the salient new album info conveniently collected in a press release in my inbox, but instead there was an email from the library telling me that the aforementioned book was a week overdue. Not quite the same thing. So I’ll update this post with specifics about the tour and release when they surface today – assuming they do – but in the meantime, marvel at the photo up above, picked up via Matablog, of Yo La Tengo with a trio of Japanese lookalikes. Don’t ask why or how, just marvel.

Update: And Matablog has it: Fade, out January 15, and tour starts the 23rd.

MP3: Yo La Tengo – “Stupid Things”
MP3: Yo La Tengo – “Nuclear War”

Keeping with the New Jersey theme, Titus Andronicus are interviewed by Beatroute, Boise Weekly, and Pitchfork and a couple more tracks from their latest Local Business are available to download. They’re at Lee’s Palace on November 27.

MP3: Titus Andronicus – “In A Big City”
MP3: Titus Andronicus – “Ecce Homo”

And if you were wondering what former Titus guitarist Amy Klein was up to, know that in addition to playing in Leda, she’s got a drum-and-guitar duo called Hilly Eye. Exclaim has some details on their debut album Reasons To Live, due January 22, and a couple of songs are available to stream.

Stream: Hilly Eye – “Jacob’s Ladder”
Stream: Hilly Eye – “Amnesia”

The Village Voice, Red Eye, and Seven Days have interviews with Sharon Van Etten.

Interview talks to Paul Banks about balancing the solo work with Interpol.

Nada Surf have released a video from their latest, The Stars Are Indifferent To Astronomy.

Video: Nada Surf – “Jules & Jim”

Some feel it’s still to early for Christmas music, but Sufjan Stevens is hoping that doesn’t apply to him. He’s made the whole of his six-EP Silver & Gold box set – that’s 58 tracks worth – available to stream and also released a couple more videos for good measure. It’s available to buy as of yesterday.

MP3: Sufjan Stevens – “Ding-A-Ling-A-Ring-A-Ling”
Video: Sufjan Stevens – “I’ll Be Home For Christmas”
Video: Sufjan Stevens – “Silver & Gold”
Stream: Sufjan Stevens / Silver & Gold

Pitchfork has details on the second album from Brooklyn’s Widowspeak; Almanac will be out on January 22 and the first MP3 from it is available to download.

MP3: Widowspeak – “Ballad Of The Golden Hour”

School Of Seven Bells are streaming the whole of their new EP Put Your Sad Down, released this week.

MP3: School Of Seven Bells – “Secret Days”
Stream: School Of Seven Bells / Put Your Sad Down

Filter talks to Grizzly Bear.

Ra Ra Riot are streaming the first track from their new record Beta Love, out January 22. They bring it to Lee’s Palace on March 6. There’s also a feature on the band at syracuse.com.

Stream: Ra Ra Riot – “Beta Love”

Head over to RecordStoreDay.com to stream the whole of Chocomel Daze, the You’re Living All Over Me-vintage Dinosaur Jr live record being released on vinyl-only next week.

Stream: Dinoaur Jr / Chocomel Daze

SF Weekly talks to Greg Dulli of The Afghan Whigs.

Jim James is done hiding behind bands and pseudonyms; he’ll release his solo debut Regions of Light and Sound of God on February 5 – details at Pitchfork and the first taste is streamable below.

Stream: Jim James – “Know Til Now”

The Chicago Tribune, Boston Globe, and Newsday talk to Aimee Mann, who has released a new video from her latest Charmer.

Video: Aimee Mann – “Soon Enough”

DIY interviews Benjamin Gibbard.

Wednesday, July 11th, 2012

Until I Am Whole

New album news from (Mountain) Goats, and (Band Of) Horses, and (Grizzly) Bear(s) – oh my!

Photo By DL AndersonD.L. AndersonA veritable deluge of new album information came across the desk in the last day or so, though it could well have been delivered in a box of animal crackers.

First and least expectedly – at least I wasn’t expecting one – is a new Mountain Goats album entitled Transcendental Youth due out on October 2. There’s no sample track yet – not even one of those album trailers that are de rigeur these days – but instead and arguably better are a couple of essays about the album, one by John Darnielle, and another by way of the official bio by John Hodgman.

You can see the full album art over at Exclaim and, as something to listen to and keeping with the animal theme, a track from their 2000 album The Coroner’s Gambit.

MP3: The Mountain Goats – “Baboon”

Having teased that it was coming but not offering much in the way of specifics, Band Of Horses have spilled the beans on album number four, to be entitled Mirage Rock and due out on September 18; it certainly gives some context to their show at Echo Beach on August 15 opening up for My Morning Jacket. Pitchfork has some specifics and the first video from the album is available below.

Video: Band Of Horses – “Knock Knock”

And while Grizzly Bear had gone so far as to not only confirm a release date for their next record – also September 18 – and book a tour – Massey Hall on September 26 – they’d been coy about the actual title of the record until now. It’s going to be called Shields and you can see the album art and track listing over at Gigwise.

MP3: Grizzly Bear – “Sleeping Ute”

And while I’m not a fan, it’d be kind of ridiculous to not note that Animal Collective have a new one entitled Centipede Hz; it’s out September 4 and the first single is available to stream.

Stream: Animal Collective – “Honeycomb”

Ty Segall isn’t named for any kind of animal but he works like a mule; Pitchfork has details on his third album of the year – Twins is out October 9, giving some context to his show with Thee Oh Sees at The Hoxton on September 26.

San Diego garage-poppers The Soft Pack have announced a couple dates at The Garrison on October 9 and 10 as part of a tour in support of their second full-length Strapped, due out September 25. The first single is available to stream.

Stream: The Soft Pack – “Saratoga”

And shifting gears to some more concert announcements: After selling the hell out of Lee’s Palace back in April before their debut Boys & Girls was even out – the show was a week after the release date but every ticket was gone weeks before then – Alabama Shakes are coming back for a gig at the much more spacious Kool Haus on October 2, tickets for that $26.50 in advance. Full Fall dates over at Pollstar.

MP3: Alabama Shakes – “I Found You”
MP3: Alabama Shakes – “You Ain’t Alone”
MP3: Alabama Shakes – “Hold On”

Of all the band hats that he has to choose from, Conor Oberst has decided to hit the road as Conor Oberst for a show at Massey Hall on December 8. Tickets go on sale Friday at 10AM and run from $39.50 to $60.50.

MP3: Conor Oberst – “Danny Callahan”
MP3: Bright Eyes – “Lover I Don’t Have To Love”
MP3: Desaparecidos – “The Happiest Place On Earth”

Major, the second album from Fang Island, is streaming over at NPR ahead of its official release on July 24.

MP3: Fang Island – “Sisterly”
MP3: Fang Island – “Asunder”
Stream: Fang Island / Major

The title track of Matt & Kim’s next album Let’s Go – release date still to be determined – is now available to download.

MP3: Matt & Kim – “Let’s Go”

NPR and The New York Times have interviews with James Murphy, who reveals that LCD Soundsystem may not be quite completely dead just yet. But close. And then, luggage. The LCD doc Shut Up And Play The Hits is back in Toronto for a couple screenings next week at The Bloor Cinema, on July 18 and 19.

As promised, Luna’s seminal 1992 album Bewitched is getting its first-ever pressing on vinyl this Summer. It’s out August 21 and is limited to an edition of 2000, so it’s a good thing you can pre-order it now.

MP3: Luna – “Tiger Lily”

A Heart Is A Spade asks a few quick questions of Peggy from The Pains Of Being Pure At Heart.

The Shins have a new video from Port Of Morrow. They open up for The Black Keys at The Molson Amphitheatre on August 4.

Video: The Shins – “It’s Only Life”

NPR is streaming a World Cafe session with Sharon Van Etten, who’s in town at the Phoenix on July 31.

PopMatters talks to Ira Elliot of Nada Surf.

Rolling Stone and The Boston Globe talk to Mission Of Burma about their new record Unsound, out now and streaming in full at Spinner.

MP3: Mission Of Burma – “Second Television”
Stream: Mission of Burma / Unsound

The Village Voice talks to Eric Bachmann of Archers Of Loaf.

PopMatters interviews Eisley.

Spin has posted their latest cover story on Cali power couple Best Coast and Wavves and thrown in a photo shoot gallery for good measure. Best Coast are at The Phoenix on July 21.

Friday, June 22nd, 2012

Vs The Greatest Of All Time

Archers Of Loaf at The Phoenix in Toronto

Photo By Frank YangFrank YangWhen we left off yesterday, I was biking furiously across town to get from The Rivoli to The Phoenix for Archers Of Loaf. So why not roll this show into the festival coverage? Well, although some wristbands were granted admission and the premiere of the What Did You Expect? live Archers doc was one of the big gets of the NXNE film festival, this show wasn’t technically part of the festival and I am, if nothing else, a stickler for these sorts of things. And having waited this long for the show, delaying it just that much longer seemed appropriate.

Since the Archers reunited in early 2011 and were willing to make it a long-term thing, I’ve been waiting for a local date – a wait exacerbated by the fact that real life commitments for most of the band kept touring restricted to weekends. Hell, Eric Bachmann brought Crooked Fingers through town twice in 2012 without an Archers sighting; certainly not a complaint as I love me some Crooked Fingers, but one couldn’t help wondering if we were being slighted. And of course we weren’t, it just took this long to get the proverbial ducks in a row, and on this night – the busiest night of music in the city in recent memory – it was happening.

And happening early, as it turned out. If they’d stuck to the posted set times there’d have been no problem but as I got into the venue, I could already hear the rumble of “Audiowhore” through the doors. Early? Who goes on early on a Saturday night? Well Archers did, clearly, though only just. The Vs The Greatest Of All Time selection was an unlikely opener, but it segued straight into arguably one of the best songs of the ’90s – “Harnessed In Slums” and we were off. A benefit of still being a sort of cult band was that most everyone in attendance was surely some degree of die hard fan and singles and deep cuts alike would be greeted with roaring enthusiasm, though obviously the likes of college rock classics as “Slums” and “Web In Front” got the mostly middle-aged crowd most rowdy.

After years of seeing Eric Bachmann fronting Crooked Fingers and only offering Archers material via stripped down, Finger-y arrangements, it was astonishing to see him cut loose in full rock fury; he’s a big guy who plays at a sort of gentle giant figure with Crooked Fingers but here, he came out swinging. Despite wanting to distance himself from his old band in the years that it was in mothballs and concentrate on what he was actively working on, it was obvious he was having a blast playing these songs the way they were meant to be played and with the guys he’d written them with. It was great to see, and his bandmates were still having a great time of it as well, even almost a year and a half into their second act. Matt Gentling in particular – who’d incidentally come through town in the Dignity & Shame incarnation of Crooked Fingers in 2005 – was a maniac onstage, striking poses while attacking his bass, contributing vocals, or just bantering with the crowd. Though I’m not sure what his “Sixteen Sixty Four” Maple Leafs-esque shirt was about…

The Archers were loud, tight, and relentless, inciting the audience to behaviour most probably hadn’t engaged in in oh, fifteen years or so, like moshing, stage diving, and crowd surfing though I have to question if it’s really crowd surfing if it’s just the same group of people carrying the guy around? Bachmann applauded the effort, anyways. And after the band closed out their encore with “Plumbline”, the audience did their best to coax them back out for a second encore – I’ve not seen a crowd so insistent that a show not end in forever – but alas, that would be it this time and possibly for all time.

The band have not made any commitment to carrying on after the final two albums in their reissue series – All The Nation’s Airports and White Trash Heroes – come out on August 7. It’s interesting that though their stature in the annals of ’90s indie rock is enormous, their influence is not so easily traced. Not many bands have managed to or even tried to replicate their particular balance of heavy and abstract yet visceral rock, so if they were to put out something new, it’d probably still sound singular and distinct. But that’s getting ahead of things – for now, I was just thankful that Archers were here, that they were great, and that Bachmann had deigned to play “Chumming The Ocean” in the encore of the last Crooked Fingers show since it wasn’t being heard on this night.

BlogTO, Radio Free Canuckistan, and NOW also have reviews of the show, while CBC Music, Beatroute, and Torontoist welcome the band back to Canada for the first time this century.

Photos: Archers Of Loaf @ The Phoenix – June 16, 2012
MP3: Archers Of Loaf – “Dead Red Eyes”
MP3: Archers Of Loaf – “What Did You Expect”
MP3: Archers Of Loaf – “Wrong”
MP3: Archers Of Loaf – “Harnessed In Slums”
Video: Archers Of Loaf – “Harnessed In Slums”
Video: Archers Of Loaf – “Underachievers March & Fight Song”
Video: Archers Of Loaf – “Wrong”
Video: Archers Of Loaf – “What Did You Expect”
Video: Archers Of Loaf – “Lowest Part Is Free!”
Video: Archers Of Loaf – “Might”
Video: Archers Of Loaf – “Web In Front”

Paste has video of a Crooked Fingers set from SXSW back in March.

Mission Of Burma have made a second MP3 from their forthcoming album Unsound, out July 10.

MP3: Mission Of Burma – “Second Television”

Spin talks to Greg Dulli about the Afghan Whigs which makes its only Canadian stop on October 3 at The Phoenix. Stereogum has also taken it on themselves to enumerate the bands 13 “most vicious” songs.

DIY talks to Tobin Sprout about the already so-prolific Guided By Voices reunion, which yields its third album Bears For Lunch around November.

Consequence Of Sound, Philly Burbs, and Metro talk to Doug Martsch of Built To Spill.

Sun Kil Moon has released a new video from Among The Leaves; Mark Kozelek plays these songs and more at The Great Hall on October 3. Boxing Scene also has an interview with the man about the pugilist themes of his songwriting.

Video: Sun Kil Moon – “Black Kite”

Wayne Coyne talks about the new Flaming Lips record to Paste and Rolling Stone. It’s due out later this year.

Paste checks in with Ira Elliot of Nada Surf.

Pitchfork talks to author Jesse Jarnow about his book Big Day Coming: Yo La Tengo and The Rise of Indie Rock, the new book about Yo La TengoYo La Tengo and the rise of indie rock.

Stereogum gets into a turntable.fm session with Ted Leo and talks tunes.

JAM and Beatroute get a moment of Craig Finn of The Hold Steady’s time for some questions.

Stereogum and The Los Angeles Times check in to see what Liz Phair is up to.

Paste has premiered a new video from Mates Of State; it’s a Guided By Voices cover taken from the Science Fair charity compilation coming out July 3.

Video: Mates Of State – “I Am A Scientist”

Interview has premiered the new video from Savoir Adore, whose new album Our Nature will be out this Fall.

Video: Savoir Adore – “Dreamers”

Bowerbirds have released another new video from The Clearing.

Video: Bowerbirds – “Sweet Moment”

Spin have premiered a new video from and Interview has a chat with Best Coast. They’re at The Phoenix on July 21.

Video: Best Coast – “The Only Place”

Consequence Of Sound talks to Munaf Rayani and Nashville Scene and Red And Black to Michael James of Explosions In The Sky.

Wednesday, June 13th, 2012

This Summer

Summer is here; so says Superchunk

Photo By Jason ArthursJason ArthursWe’re still over a week out from the official Summer solstice, but Superchunk don’t need no druidic approval to declare the season of sun and fun officially here. After following up 2010’s Majesty Shredding with a series of reissues, they’ve just released a new 7″ single for the song “This Summer” and if that wasn’t enough seasonal thematicness for one release, the b-side is a cover of Bananarama’s 1983 Summer anthem.

The single is limited to an edition of 1300 pieces worldwide, pressed on white vinyl, and comes with a download code for an acoustic version of the a-side. And as a little bonus, they’ve released a video of the band recording the handclaps that appear on the tune.

“This Summer” is available to stream now. Update: Stereogum has the Bananarama cover up to stream now, as well.

Stream: Superchunk – “This Summer”

Some noteworthy concert announcements came down the pipe yesterday. Chicago’s heavy post-rock trio Russian Circles have made a date at Lee’s Palace on August 21 in support of last year’s Empros. Tickets are $14.50 in advance.

MP3: Russian Circles – “Mladek”

Chicago’s Riotfest has made a name for itself over the past few years as a festival catering to those with louder/punkier tastes, and they’ll be expanding beyond the Windy City this year, touching down at Toronto’s Garrison Commons at Fort York on September 9 with a lineup featuring The Descendents, NOFX, Fucked Up, and more. Tickets are $39.50 and go on sale Friday.

MP3: Fucked Up – “I Hate Summer”
Video: The Descendents – “I’m The One”
Video: NOFX – “Cokie The Clown”

Dinosaur Jr have announced a September 18 release for their next album I Bet On Sky; details and album art at Pitchfork. They’ll celebrate its release with a three-night stand at Lee’s Palace from September 24 to 26.

MP3: Dinosaur Jr – “Almost Ready”

Ty Segall never seems to wear out his welcome in these parts, but just to make sure you stay interested he’s teaming up with Thee Oh Sees for a Fall tour that hits The Hoxton on September 26, tickets $18.50. Segall’s follow-up to last year’s Goodbye Bread should be out by then; Thee Oh Sees’ new one Putrifiers II definitely will – it has a release date of September 11 already set.

MP3: Ty Segall – “You Make The Sun Fry”
Video: Thee Oh Sees – “I Need Seed”

Dr. Dog will be at The Opera House on October 13 in support of their latest, Be The Void. Tickets are $20 in advance.

Video: Dr. Dog – “That Old Black Hole”

Portland’s Menomena have made a date at The Horseshoe on October 17, which kind of implies they’ll have a new record out by then. Tickets to that are $15 in advance. Update: Said new record will be called Moms and be out September 18.

MP3: Menomena – “Taos”

Apparently not a man to hold a grudge, Dan Deacon has made plans to return to Toronto for a show at Lee’s Palace on November 9 – tickets $13.50 – but please, leave his skull alone. His new record America is out August 27.

MP3: Dan Deacon – “Lots”

If you were planning on seeing A Place To Bury Strangers at The El Mocambo tomorrow night for NXNE but were worried about not knowing any of the new songs from Worship, what with it not being out for another couple weeks (June 26), fear not – The Quietus has an advance stream of the album for you. But let’s be honest, it’s all going to sound like “KKKKKKCCCCCCHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH” anyways.

MP3: A Place To Bury Strangers – “You Are The One”
Stream: A Place To Bury Strangers / Worship

Joe Pernice has offered a clue as to who will be opening up for him at The Dakota Tavern on June 22, and if you still don’t get it – and understand why you should be in line well before doors open at 6PM (there are no advance tickets) – then clearly you are on the wrong website. Good day to you.

Fang Island have made another track from their forthcoming Major available to download; the album is out July 12.

MP3: Fang Island – “Sisterly”

Cat Power talks to The Stool Pigeon about her new album The Sun, due out on September 11.

The lead single from Calexico’s new record Algiers – due out September 11 – is now available to download.

MP3: Calexico – “Para”

Pitchfork and The Fly have features on Grizzly Bear, currently trying to come up with a title for their new album before it’s released on September 18. They’re at Massey Hall on September 26.

In a Facebook post, Anna-Lynne Williams updates fans and friends about her various musical projects and notes that the Trespassers William forthcoming career-wrapping compilation has a name – Cast – and should be out in September.

The Music has two separate interviews with Mark Kozelek while Filter only has one. His October 3 date at The Great Hall still hasn’t been canceled.

Daytrotter has a session with Nada Surf, who’ve just released a new video from their latest The Stars Are Indifferent To Astronomy.

Video: Nada Surf – “Waiting For Something”

With the release yesterday of Class Clown Spots A UFO, Consequence Of Sound decides now is the perfect time to take an album-by-album look at the discography of Guided By Voices, though they’ll have to expand it in November when Bears For Lunch, the band’s third album of the year, is released.

School Of Seven Bells have selected a winner in their competition to make a video for their song “The Night” off of Ghostory.

Video: School Of Seven Bells – “The Night”

Bowerbirds have new video out from The Clearing.

Video: Bowerbirds – “Overcome By Light”

Rolling Stone has an excerpt from Big Day Coming: Yo La Tengo and The Rise of Indie Rock – the just-released book about Yo La Tengo and the rise of indie rock – and The Washington Post has an interview with author Jesse Jarnow about the volume.

Wednesday, April 25th, 2012

Jesus Of Cool

Nick Lowe at The Phoenix in Toronto

Photo By Frank YangFrank YangMaybe listening to Jesus Of Cool and Labour Of Lust weren’t the best warm-ups for Nick Lowe’s show at The Phoenix on Monday night. After all, he was many many years removed from being the young pub-rock firebrand who recorded those first two records, having settled comfortably into the role of professorial pop singer-songwriter – a guise that’s suited his still-potent pen quite nicely, as last year’s The Old Magic proved. But if you assumed this meant that his shows would be sedate, sit-down affairs, then you were mistaken. Somewhat.

Though the show was billed as Lowe with band, the man took the stage solo to open things up with something old and something new – “Stoplight Roses” from Magic and “Heart” from 1982’s Nick The Knife – before he took some time to chat up the crowd. He apologized if anyone was confused about the venue, since his recent shows had typically been at The Mod Club but with the positive reception that Magic has gotten and the increase in profile he got opening up for Wilco back in September, an upgrade in venue was not overreaching although what with the Phoenix floor being set up with chairs, the increase in capacity was probably only a couple hundred more at best.

Also in his opening monologue, Lowe mentioned that despite the new record being received quite favourably, it wouldn’t be one of “those” shows and that the set list had been optimized for “quality entertainment,” and the man wasn’t lying. After bringing his band out, he led them through a set that went from jazzy on the slower end of things to rollicking rockabilly at the other and both established the strength of his career’s body of work and affirmed that his recent records were as good as his old ones, in their way. After all, Lowe’s talents have always been his way with words and melodies, not in the fashions they were dressed in. I was a bit surprised how that Jesus Of Cool and Labour Of Lust didn’t get a bit more attention – besides being arguably his most famous records, they were also the ones recently reissued – but Lust was only represented by “Without Love” and “Cruel To Be Kind” and Jesus ignored completely.

No one was complaining, though. The audience was dead silent when they needed to be and whooped it up when appropriate, to say nothing of the sounds of female swooning that periodically punctuated the show; indeed, Lowe was a study in songwriting, charm and aging well. It wasn’t until the finale of the main set – “I Knew the Bride (When She Used to Rock ‘n’ Roll)” – that they finally got up out of their seats – well, five of them at least – to turn the space at the front of the stage into a dance floor. They were joined by many more for the encores, the first of which was highlighted by a hymnal version of “(What’s So Funny ‘Bout) Peace, Love and Understanding” and the second which found Lowe, again alone onstage, performing a song by the other iconic British artist to whom he’ll be forever tied – Elvis Costello and “Alison”, and that he missed a chord change while singing “My aim is true” only made the whole thing that much more perfect.

The Toronto Sun and NOW also have reviews of the show; Interview has an interview.

Photos: Nick Lowe @ The Phoenix – April 23, 2012
Video: Nick Lowe – “Sensitive Man”
Video: Nick Lowe – “All Men Are Liars”
Video: Nick Lowe – “I Knew The Bride When She Used To Rock And Roll)”
Video: Nick Lowe – “Half A Boy And Half A Man”
Video: Nick Lowe – “Cruel To Be Kind”
Video: Nick Lowe – “Crackin’ Up”

The Line Of Best Fit revisits Billy Bragg and Wilco’s Woody Guthrie-saluting Mermaid Avenue releases; Mermaid Avenue: Volume III would appear to only be available in physical form in the Mermaid Avenue: The Complete Sessions. Alas. Maybe take it up with Billy when his North American tour brings him through the Mariposa Folk Festival in Orillia on July 8? It looks like that’s as close as he’s getting to Hogtown this time out.

Tiny Mix Tapes interviews Sleigh Bells, back in Toronto next week on April 27 and 28 at the Air Canada Centre opening for Red Hot Chili Peppers.

With Lower Dens’ new album Nootropics due out next week – May 1 – DIY has both a stream of the whole thing and song-by-song annotations from the band.

MP3: Lower Dens – “Brains”
MP3: Lower Dens – “Propagation”
Stream: Lower Dens / Nootropics

La Sera – aka Katy Goodman of Vivian Girls – brings her new record Sees The Light to The Shop Under Parts & Labour on May 13, part of a North American tour.

MP3: La Sera – “Please Be My Third Eye”

The AV Club has got a stream of Fear Fun – the debut album from Father John Misty, aka J. Tillman ex of Fleet Foxes – ahead of its May 1 release date as well as an interview with the man. He plays The Horseshoe on May 14.

MP3: Father John Misty – “Nancy From Now On”
MP3: Father John Misty – “Hollywood Forever Cemetery Sings”
Stream: Father John Misty / Fear Fun

Billboard has a feature piece on Beach House, whose new album Bloom is out May 15.

Wayne Coyne of The Flaming Lips talks to Forbes about why the band has been so dedicated to making weird records/releases over the last couple of years; basically, just to see if they could. Another of the tracks from their Record Store Day Heady Fwends has just been made into a video. The Flaming Lips play a free show for NXNE at Yonge-Dundas Square on June 16.

Video: The Flaming Lips with Prefuse 73 – “The Supermoon Made Me Want To Pee”

And going on before the Lips and doubling the insane live show quotient will be Of Montreal. They’ve just released a new video from this year’s Paralytic Stalks and NPR is streaming last night’s show in Washington DC. And if you’re curious about some of the other NXNE scheduling that I’ve sussed out, last week’s post is in a constant state of update.

Video: Of Montreal – “Spiteful Intervention”

These United States – whose last attempted visit was derailed, I believe, by something we Torontonians like to call the G20 riots, will give it another go with a show at The Horseshoe on June 22. Update: okay, so they were actually here just a couple weeks ago opening for Trampled By Turtles. Fine.

MP3: These United States – “The Great Rivers”
MP3: These United States – “Water & Wheat”

Their fourth album Magic Hour due out on May 28, New York’s Scissor Sisters have set a date at the Sound Academy for June 28 – tickets are $32.50 for general admission and $42.50 for VIP.

Video: Scissor Sisters – “Only The Horses”

Andrew Bird has extended his Summer tour in support of Break It Yourself to include a July 19 date at Echo Beach in Toronto. Tickets are $35 in advance, full itinerary at Under The Radar.

MP3: Andrew Bird – “Eyeoneye”
MP3: Andrew Bird – “Give It Away”

Rolling Stone talks to Merrill Garbus of tUnE-yArDs. She’s at The Phoenix on August 1.

To everyone reporting that Cat Power had named her new record, Sun – it’s not really news. She named announced it as the name of her next studio album following The Greatest as early as 2007, reported that the album was done in 2008 and then said that she’d shelved it in 2009. The more pertinent question is did she change her mind about those sessions and is releasing five-year old recordings or was she so attached to the album title that she’s using it for a whole new set of songs. In any case, it is news – assuming it’s true – that the record will be out on September 11. I’ll wait for Matador to chime in.

Exclaim solicits an acoustic video session with Nada Surf.

The Blue Indian chats with Bowerbirds.

The Mountain Goats play a video session for Paste and bassist Peter Hughes chats with Tone Deaf.

The Village Voice talks to Kurt Wagner of Lambchop, and if you missed last week’s guest editor run at Magnet, check it out – they discuss the origins of each song on Mr. M.

State talks to Stephin Merritt of The Magnetic Fields.

Clash sends Crispin Glover to interview J. Mascis. Stranger things have happened, but not much.

Proxart talks to Anna-Lynne Williams of Trespassers William; on Facebook this week, she reported that the final Trespassers release – a double-disc cupboard clearing compilation – had gone off for mastering. Details on that release soon, one hopes.

The AV Club has posted their third instalment documenting the history of R.E.M..