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Posts Tagged ‘Richard Buckner’

Wednesday, April 10th, 2013

Heard The News

Guards, Mates Of State, and other support acts elevated to blog post headline status

Photo By Olivia MaloneOlivia MaloneSome weeks, the inbox is a veritable cornucopia of interesting concert announcements for acts big and small. Compiling the blog posts that collect those up is a genuine delight. And easy. Generally so easy. This was not one of those weeks. Indeed, most of the news was of the “support announced” variety, which isn’t necessarily uninteresting – sometimes it’s more interesting than the headliner – but it is less easy.

Anyways, we’ll kick off with New York’s Guards, who will be supporting Palma Violets at Lee’s Palace on May 3. They’re fronted by one Richie Follin, whose did time in Cults with sister Madelin and also worked with Caroline Polachek of Chairlift, and while either of those reference points are probably enough to garner attention, the sun-kissed, retro-styled power pop of their debut album In Guards We Trust, released in February, are far more in line with the former than the latter. It’s not revolutionary by any measure, but it is well-executed and likeable.

The Bay Bridged has an interview with Richie Follin.

MP3: Guards – “Silver Lining”
MP3: Guards – “Crystal Truth”
Video: Guards – “Ready To Go”
Video: Guards – “Silver Lining”

It’s a bit of an odd pairing, but throwback jangle-poppers DIIV will be supporting Trent Reznor’s How To Destroy Angels at The Sound Academy on April 25. They were also here in December supporting Japandroids, but I’m sure there’s enough fans of Oshin that a headlining show – which they last did in September – would also be welcome.

MP3: DIIV – “Sometime”

Not that Titus Andronicus need any help drawing a crowd, but their May 2 date at Lee’s Palace announced last week just got a boost regardless with the announcement that they’re being joined by Brooklyn’s So So Glos for what they’re calling the “Bring Back The Dudes” tour – which will be a pretty apt description of the demographic at the show. Their new record Blowout is out April 23 and there’s an interview at The L.

Video: So So Glos – “My Block”

Some bands worry about announcing multiple upcoming dates in a given market out of fear that one show may cannibalize ticket sales from the other; Ra Ra Riot clearly do not. They spent most of the lead up to their early March headlining show for Beta Love with their name also on posters for the Arts & Crafts Field Trip festival at Garrison Common on June 8, and now they’ve also announced that they’ll also be in town a couple weeks prior to that supporting The Shins at The Sound Academy on May 22. I don’t know if there are Ra Ra Riot fans so dedicated to hit up every one of their local shows, but if so, they’re probably pretty happy.

MP3: Ra Ra Riot – “Beta Love”
MP3: Ra Ra Riot – “Dance With Me”

Ra Ra Riot will also be opening up some of the dates on the upcoming Postal Service tour, but not Toronto – according to the itinerary released yesterday, we’ll have Mates Of State opening up at the Air Canada Centre on June 11 and that’s a-ok with me, though I can’t say I wouldn’t love to see peoples’ faces when Big Freedia shakes what she’s got on those west coast dates.

MP3: Mates Of State – “Maracas”
MP3: Mates Of State – “My Only Offer”

And in headlining announcements – Spencer Krug will appear as Moonface in a solo piano context on May 12 at The Great Hall in something called The Conversation Room. I don’t know what/where that is, but I kind of hope it’s like The Champagne Room. Tickets are $16.50 and there is probably no sex.

MP3: Moonface – “Teary Eyes and Bloody Lips”
MP3: Moonface – “Headed For The Door”

One of the buzzier bads at CMF this year were German electro-pop duo BOY, and those who missed out on their shows will be pleased to know they’re back in town at The Great Hall on May 16 in support of their debut Mutual Friend. Tickets for that are $17.50.

Video: BOY – “Little Numbers”

I could be wrong but I don’t think Richard Buckner has been to Toronto since the “two really big dudes with gravelly voices” tour with Eric Bachmann in September 2006. In any case, the upcoming release of Surrounded – about which there’s no other information besides that it exists and will be called Surrounded – will bring him back to The Horseshoe on May 23, tickets $13.50.

MP3: Richard Buckner – “Escape”

One of the unfortunate casualties of the canceled Efterklang show during CMF last month was the local debut of Philadelphia’s Nightlands, who were supposed to open up. They’ll make that show up at The Drake Underground on June 3, playing songs from their debut Oak Island, from which they’ve just released a new video. The Concordian also has an interview with band principal Dave Hartley.

MP3: Nightlands – “300 Clouds”
MP3: Nightlands – “Suzerain (A Letter To The Judge)”
Video: Nightlands – “Born To Love”

Brooklyn’s Yeasayer will circle back behind their third album Fragrant World with a show at The Phoenix on July 2.

MP3: Yeasayer – “Henrietta”
MP3: Yeasayer – “Longevity”

Two-tone legends The Specials are coming back to town, slating a July 9 date at The Kool Haus, tickets $39.50.

Video: The Specials – “Message To You Rudy”

“Edge” certainly doesn’t mean what it used to. Traditionally the region’s premier bro-fest, the CFNY-sponsored Edgefest has gone acoustic and plaid for 2013, taking advantage of Lollapalooza weekend to present a lineup headlined by The Lumineers and Band Of Horses at Downsview Park on July 31. Quite an about face from past editions of the festival, which has in the past been closed out by the likes of Billy Talent, A Perfect Circle, Stone Temple Pilots, and Our Lady Peace. Tickets for the day are $49.50 plus fees.

MP3: Band Of Horses – “No One’s Gonna Love You”
Video: The Lumineers – “Hey Ho”

Okay, so as it turns out there was more announced this week than I thought. Elsewhere…

Philly.com talks to Redd Kross’ Steve McDonald, who will tear things up at The Horseshoe tomorrow night, April 11.

The Thermals are streaming their new super-short but super-intense new album Desperate Ground at Pitchfork before its out on Apri l6. They play The Horseshoe on May 21.

Stream: The Thermals / Desperate Ground

Another new track from Steve Earle’s Low Highway – out April 16 – has been made available to stream.

Stream: Steve Earle & The Dukes (and Duchesses) – “Calico County”

DIY talks to Flaming Lips frontman Wayne Coyne ahead of next week’s release of The Terror.

Under The Radar interviews Black Rebel Motorcycle Club, in town at The Kool Haus on May 9.

NPR has a Mountain Stage session with Calexico, coming to Toronto for a NXNE show at the Mod Club on June 12.

Exclaim, The Village Voice, Pitchfork, and Consequence Of Sound all want to talk to Kurt Vile about his latest album Wakin’ On A Pretty Daze, out now. He plays the Toronto Urban Roots Fest at Garrison Common on July 7.

Lissie has rolled out a lyric video fro the first sample of her second album, due out this September.

Lyric Video: Lissie – “Shameless”

NPR has a World Cafe session with Caitlin Rose.

Friday, August 5th, 2011

What Did You Expect

This is not an Archers Of Loaf review

Photo By Jason SummersJason SummersThis isn’t a review of the double-disc edition of Icky Mettle, released earlier this week and the first of four Archers Of Loaf reissues to come over the next year and a bit – for that, hit up the excellent Pitchfork writeup. I’ve had Icky Mettle for years but it hasn’t become such a part of me that I can offer any sort of explanation as to why it’s such a great record – in fact, I’ve only really come to that realization recently. So go read Matt LeMay’s writeup.

This also isn’t a broader discussion of why Archers were such a great and important band, and why their reunion is so exciting, even for those who are super-jaded about reunions in general. For that, check out this The Village Voice piece that gets The Hold Steady’s Craig Finn, Band Of Horses’ Ben Bridwell and members of Les Savy Fav to articulate their love for and influence of the band.

No, this is just me trying to clear out some links and make it to the weekend while listening to All The Nation’s Airports. So if you’re looking for some Archers content, check out the interviews with the band at The Village Voice and Washington Post and hope that the promises that Eric Bachmann made last month while here with Crooked Fingers to bring Archers through town sometime next March prove to be true.

MP3: Archers Of Loaf – “What Did You Expect”
Video: Archers Of Loaf – “Web In Front”

Also being reissued with bonuses is Superchunk’s 1994 album Foolish, out on September 13. Full details available at Exclaim.

Video: Superchunk – “Driveway To Driveway”

Pitchfork reveals that super-deluxe, super-limited remastered reissues of Olivia Tremor Control’s two albums – Dusk At Cubist Castle and Black Foliage: Animation Music Volume One – are coming on November 15. That’s too late to grace the merch table on their upcoming Fall tour, including the September 16 show at Lee’s Palace, but considering there’s only going to be 1000 of each made, it’s doubtful they’d make it past the first few cities on the itinerary anyways.

Not a reissue, but Old 97s are revisiting their past by giving away MP3s of all the demos for their 1997 album Too Far To Care.

MP3: Old 97’s – “Daybed” (demo)
MP3: Old 97’s – “Timebomb” (demo)

The Chicago Daily Herald talks to John Darnielle of The Mountain Goats.

The Awl has an interview with Amy Klein of Titus Andronicus.

My Morning Jacket drummer Patrick Hallahan discusses the band’s approach to playing live with Billboard. The Indianapolis Star also chats with guitarist Carl Broemel.

Writers On Process and Blurt go under the creative hood with Richard Buckner. Both are two-parters though the back half of the Writers piece is still forthcoming.

Drowned In Sound talks to Ra Ra Riot bassist Mathieu Santos. They play Lee’s Palace on October 6.

Exclaim reports that Ryan Adams – who apparently ended his retirement last year and has already released like fifteen albums – will put out his first proper solo record in some time with Ashes & Fire, due out October 11.

Rachael Yamagata will release a new album in Chesapeake on October 11; grab the first MP3 below.

MP3: Rachael Yamagata – “Starlight”

Spin has premiered the video for EMA’s contribution to their Nirvana tribute album Newermind.

Video: EMA – “Endless Nameless”

Decemberists bassist Nate Query confirms the band’s upcoming hiatus to Billboard but assures them it’s just a break, nothing permanent. The Arizona Republic and Cincinnati Citybeat also get to query Query (oh come on).

Brooklyn rockers Obits have set an October 25 date at The Rivoli in support of their second record Moody Standard & Poor. Tickets are $13 in advance.

MP3: Obits – “Shift Operator”
MP3: Obits – “You Gotta Lose”

San Francisco’s Wooden Shjips will release their latest West on September 15 and follow up with a show at The Horseshoe on November 7.

MP3: Wooden Shjips – “Lazy Bones”

NOW has put Bon Iver frontman Justin Vernon on their cover with accompanying interview, while NPR is streaming their show in DC from earlier this week. Bon Iver play The Sound Academy on Monday night, August 8.

NOW also checks in with Kathleen Edwards, whose next album will be produced by Vernon. And who’s also his girlfriend. Not that that matters.

The Toronto Star and NOW welcome The Doughboys back to active duty – they’ll play a free show at the Bovine Sex Club on Monday night as a warm-up to opening up for Foo Fighters at the Air Canada Centre the next night.

Emily Haines gives The Grid a status report on the next Metric record.

MTV gets Broken Social Scene’s Kevin Drew to respond to comments made by guitarist Andrew Whiteman about the band’s last video for “The Sweetest Kill”.

The Line Of Best Fit has a video session with Dan Mangan, whose next record Oh Fortune is out September 27 and who plays The Queen Elizabeth Theatre on October 28.

The Thrill Is Back got Rural Alberta Advantage into the back of their van at Hillside a few weeks ago and videotaped him playing a couple songs, including one new one.

Metro chats with The Wilderness Of Manitoba.

Tuesday, August 2nd, 2011

Sun Hits

Review of Memory Tapes’ Player Piano and giveaway

Photo via Windish AgencyWindish AgencyI’ve no doubt that Dayve Hawk loathes the term/scene/epithet “chillwave” that was attached to his musical identity of Memory Tapes when he emerged last year, and fairly so – its connotations were rarely positive, or at least applied without some snark, and many of the acts who would been considered his peers were kind of terrible. But if I hadn’t done the cursory, “so what the hell is this all about” investigation, I might not have ever heard his debut Seek Magic and that would have been a shame.

Though it technically passed the chillwave checklist test – homemade dreamy textures made with burbling synths and ’80s electropop echoes – Seek Magic possessed a degree of craftsmanship and songwriting that lifted it well above the also-rans. And the fact that he made it compelling in live performance, as I saw at SXSW 2010, confirmed that while it was probably safe to ignore anything bearing the aforementioned metatag, Memory Tapes deserved to stay on my radar.

The just-released second Memory Tapes record Player Piano takes everything that was good about Seek Magic and reinforces it, offering stronger songs, sharper hooks and less instrumental haze. The guitars still shimmer and echo and Hawke’s voice remains high and pleasantly pinched, but the overall experience is just bigger, in both dynamics and sonic scope – some of Player Piano is M83-scale ambitious. I do find myself wishing there was a little more weight in the low end, be it in the drums or bass, to give it that extra bit of presence but that’s a minor complaint and weighed against Player Piano‘s many merits, a negligible one. File under one of the best dream-pop records you’ll likely hear this year.

Memory Tapes is currently on tour and will be at Wrongbar in Toronto on August 13. Tickets for the show are $12 in advance but courtesy of Embrace, I have two pairs of passes to give away for the show. To enter, email me at contests AT chromewaves.net with “I want Memory Tapes” in the subject line and your full name in the body, and have that in to me before midnight, August 10.

SF Weekly has an interview with Dayve Hawk.

MP3: Memory Tapes – “Wait In The Dark”
MP3: Memory Tapes – “Today Is Our Life”
Video: Memory Tapes – “Yes We Know”

After some time off turned into a hiatus turned into a disbandment, James Mercer and a new passel of bandmates have reconvened as The Shins and while a new record won’t be out until next year, there will be some Fall tour dates to get folks reacquainted and one of them is September 22 at The Phoenix in Toronto. Ticket prices still TBA but they’ll go on sale Friday.

MP3: The Shins – “So Says I”
MP3: The Shins – “Kissing The Lipless”

Everyone’s favourite family-friendly hip-hop collective Odd Future are coming back to town as part of a massive Fall tour that will allow them to get up close and personal with their fans, and possibly kick them in the faces. The Toronto date comes October 16 at the Sound Academy. Interview has a talk with Wolf Gang leader Tyler The Creator and the collective are featured on the cover of this month’s Exclaim

Video: Tyler The Creator – “Yonkers”

The Black Angels will be back in town at Lee’s Palace on October 24 with Dead Meadow; both are continuing to work 2010 releases – the former with Phosphene Dream and the latter with Three Kings.

MP3: The Black Angels – “Telephone”
MP3: Dead Meadow – “Good Moanin'”

New York DFA-affiliated electro-poppers Holy Ghost! will be at 69 Bathurst on November 1 in support of their self-titled debut.

MP3: Holy Ghost! – “Do It Again”
MP3: Holy Ghost! – “I Will Come Back”
MP3: Holy Ghost! – “Wait & See”

Wears The Trousers interviews Merrill Garbus of tUnE-yArDs. She plays Lee’s Palace on September 24.

Spin finds out some of Mates Of State’s favourite things. The indie-pop duo are readying their latest album Mountaintops for a September 13 release and will be at The Phoenix on September 28.

They Shoot Music has a video session with Wye Oak, who will be at The Sound Academy on October 7 opening up for Explosions In The Sky.

My Morning Jacket have released a video from their latest record Circuital.

Video: My Morning Jacket – “Holdin’ On To Black Metal”

Pitchfork has got a nice Yours Truly-shot video of EMA at the recent Pitchfork Festival.

Magnet Q&As Richard Buckner in advance of making him their website guest editor for the week.

The Montreal Gazette, Boston Herald, Detroit Free Press and Tourisme Montreal talk to members of Death Cab For Cutie.

Monday, July 25th, 2011

Butterfly Knife

EMA at The Garrison in Toronto

Photo By Frank YangFrank YangIn case anyone was wondering – and I certainly was earlier on on Saturday night – there is no air conditioning at The Garrison. Had I known this for sure beforehand, it would have been another compelling reason – right behind a week-old broken bone and backlog of television to watch – to stay home and just not deal with the world. But EMA was in town and easing myself off prescription meds as I was, getting out for a show was the sort of distraction I could use.

I confess to no familiarity with Erika Anderson’s last band Gowns, but her debut under the acronym identity Past Life Martyred Saints has been on fairly heavy rotation over the past couple months. Its a fascinating balance of rawness and poise, grunge and folk, all tied together with Anderson’s almost uncomfortably bare and confessional lyrics – I quite wanted to see how it would all come off live.

As did a healthy number of other people – a couple hundred by my guesstimate – all adding to the general sweatiness of the proceedings but also providing plenty of incentive for Anderson and her three bandmates to turn in an impressive show despite looking like hot messes before even playing a note. Throughout their hour-long set they alternately and simultaneously evoked Sonic Youth – thanks in no small part to Anderson’s Kim Gordon-esque vocals – and The Velvet Underground – duelling violins in a rock context will do that – all with a distinctly ’90s alt-rock vibe that was equal parts Nirvana and Pavement.

Between songs Anderson was chatty, a bit dorky and a lot funny, a decidedly different character than you might expect given the open wound vibe of the album’s stream of consciousness confessionals. But expecting every live show to be some sort of catharsis would be unreasonable and probably unhealthy – instead the show contained a healthy dose of attitude and snarl and was delivered with a surprising degree of theatricality. Things weren’t so polished, however, that after closing the set with a properly intense and stage-messing “California”, Anderson had to spend a little while putting her pedals and gear back together before being able to close out with one more song. Short, sweet and satisfying. And sweaty. Oh so sweaty.

Photos: EMA @ The Garrison – July 23, 2011
MP3: EMA – “Milkman”
MP3: EMA – “The Grey Ship”
Video: EMA – “California”
Video: EMA – “Milkman”

St. Vincent has set up a StrangeMercy.com to build anticipation for album number three, Strange Mercy, before its release on September 13 and via a Twitter campaign, the first MP3 from the album was made available last week.

MP3: St. Vincent – “Surgeon”

Dum Dum Girls have also offered the first preview of their new record Only In Dreams, due out September 27. They play Lee’s Palace on October 16.

MP3: Dum Dum Girls – “Coming Down”

And Ume have shared the first sample of their new record Phantoms, out August 30.

MP3: Ume – “Captive”

The Chicago Tribune gets to know Wild Flag, whose self-titled debut drops September 13. They play Lee’s Palace on October 11.

Exclaim and The Globe & Mail talk to Eleanor Friedberger about her solo works and what’s next for The Fiery Furnaces. Though here just last week for a solo show, word is Friedberger will be back with a full band sometime in October. A new video from Last Summer also came out a few weeks ago.

Video: Eleanor Friedberger – “Roosevelt Island”

The Calgary Herald profiles The Head & The Heart.

Black Book checks in with Ivy about their return to active duty with All Hours, in stores September 20.

The Big Takeover, AV Club and Austin 360 have chats with Andrew Kenny of The Wooden Birds.

The Quietus interviews Zach Condon of Beirut. They play The Phoenix on August 2 and 4 and release a new album in The Rip Tide on August 30.

The new single from Bon Iver is up for grabs. Their just-started tour hits The Sound Academy on August 8.

MP3: Bon Iver – “Holocene”

Spinner has got a new MP3 from Richard Buckner’s next album Our Blood available to download while NPR is streaming the album in whole ahead of its August 2 release date.

MP3: Richard Buckner – “Escape”
Stream: Richard Buckner / Our Blood

Stereogum gets a progress report on the new Crooked Fingers record Breaks In The Armor, due out October 11, and the Archers Of Loaf reunion.

Pitchfork has streams of the latest Flaming Lips releases – the ones that come on USB sticks embedded in gummy fetuses – and there’s also a video for a track they recorded with Lightning Bolt. The Boston Herald and Montreal Gazette have interviews with Wayne Coyne.

Video: The Flaming Lips with Lightning Bolt – “I Want To Get High But I Don’t Want Brain Damage”

FFWD and The Montreal Gazette chat with Yo La Tengo.

The AV Club offers a newcomer’s guide to the works of R.E.M..

Crawdaddy talks memoirs with Bob Mould.

Tuesday, May 10th, 2011

We Need A Myth

Review of Okkervil River’s I Am Very Far

Photo By Alexandra ValentiAlexandra ValentiIf Will Sheff has ever felt too predictable in what people expect from Okkervil River, he’s really got no one to blame but himself. Since their breakout 2005 record Black Sheep Boy, the band in which he’s been the only real constant has made a habit (okay, twice) of releasing literarily-inclined multi-volume sets with a very specific narrative and musical themes; Black Sheep Boy being a mythically-tinged folk-rock study of the Tim Hardin song and the 2007-08 season’s production of The Stage Names/The Stand Ins was his ruminations on fame and the rock’n’roll life set to a soundtrack appropriately indebted to classic sounds of the ’60s and ’70s.

It’s an approach that has worked, clearly; each of Okkervil’s releases has brought the band more and more acclaim and all have been favourites around these parts. But based on their new record I Am Very Far, it’s one that required a little shaking up. Or a lot. While time will tell if there’ll be a companion record released in the near future, those looking for an easy angle on what Very Far is about, thematically, will be disappointed – having essentially put novels and memoirs to song, Sheff has now assembled his short story collection with each of the record’s eleven songs standing self-contained, both lyrically and musically. And it’s on the latter point that I Am Very Far really stands apart from its predecessors.

With a markedly different lineup from their last recordings, it’s inevitable that Okkervil would sound at least a little different. But rather than simply accept those variances, Sheff has opted to exploit them and give the band a new sonic identity. His own perfectly imperfect vocals remain the most identifying trait, but everything around it is bigger and broader-sounding than ever before. This is easily Okkervil’s most produced record ever, but rather than the extra gloss that that usually implies, here it means density. Overdubs and extra players, musical styles heretofore unexplored – dig the almost disco-ish groove of “Piratess” – and crazy echos and reverbs pervade the record as does an almost manic (or maniacal) sense of relentless restlessness; its bloodshot energy is almost as uncomfortable to listen to as it is invigorating. Some might suggest that I Am Very Far is the band’s bid to break into the mainstream but I think that if that was their intention, they’d sound like they’d have gotten a little more sleep before pressing “record”.

But for all the tumult that has obviously gone into making I Am Very Far, after a few acclimatizing listens, something quite beautiful emerges. The freedom gained from putting everything that defined Okkervil on the table with this record combined with Sheff’s already formidable skills as a songwriter, lyricist and arranger have produced the sort of album that I imagine most bands of a certain tenure long for; one that the more you thought you knew what the band were about, the more you’d be surprised by and which is like discovering one of your favourite bands again for the first time.

Spinner talks to Will Sheff and Pat Pestorius about making the new album. They play The Phoenix on June 10.

MP3: Okkervil River – “Wake And Be Fine”
Video: Okkervil River – “Wake And Be Fine”
Stream: Okkervil River / I Am Very Far

San Diego’s Crocodiles, whom I’d begun to think had some personal issue with Toronto for their never touring up this way, will make up for their absence in a big way for NXNE as they will play a three-night residency at The Silver Dollar over the course of the festival, June 17, 18 and 19, with a different undercard each night.

MP3: Crocodiles – “Sleep Forever”

Chicago emo/math-rock veterans Joan Of Arc have a date at The Garrison for August 5, ticket $12.50. Their new record Life Like is out today.

MP3: Joan Of Arc – “Love Life”

The best of news, the worst of news. With their self-titled album due out on June 21, Bon Iver have announced a Summer tour that brings Justin Vernon and company back to Toronto on August 8… to The Sound Academy. Well at least it’ll be warm. Tickets are $35 general admission, $45 VIP and go on sale Friday. Support will come from Vernon’s old bandmates The Rosebuds, who themselves have a new record out in Loud Planes Fly Low, out June 7.

MP3: Bon Iver – “Blood Bank”
MP3: The Rosebuds – “Second Bird Of Paradise”

New York singer-songwriter Lia Ices has announced a date at The Rivoli for August 9, tickets $12, and has also released a video for the title track of her debut album Grown Unknown. The Georgia Straight has a profile.

MP3: Lia Ices – “Daphne”
Video: Lia Ices – “Grown Unknown”

The National have taken their two recent non-album releases – songs from the Win/Win film and Portal 2 video game soundtracks – and put them on a 7″ single for those who like physical things made of vinyl.

Sufjan Stevens talks to The Guardian about the nervous breakdown that informed The Age Of Adz.

NYC Taper is sharing a recording of an Antlers show in New York from earlier this week. Their new record Burst Apart is out today and Pitchfork has an in-studio video performance of one the new songs with an assist from Neon indian. There’s interviews with the band at The Huffington Post, eMusic and Village Voice. They play The Mod Club on June 14.

The AV Club chats with Bon Iver drummer S Carey about his solo work.

Pitchfork talks to Robin Pecknold of Fleet Foxes. They’re at Massey Hall on July 14 and tonight’s show in Austin is going to be webcast live on NPR.

Richard Buckner fields questions from Aquarium Drunkard about his new record Our Blood, due out August 2.

PopMatters interviews Lissie, in town for a show at The Phoenix on May 28.

Death Cab For Cutie have released a second video from Codes & Keys, out May 31. They’ve got two local dates coming up – May 18 at The Phoenix and July 29 at The Molson Amphitheatre. Tickets for the latter will range from $29.50 to $49.50 and go on sale Friday at 1PM. Black Book talks food with Ben Gibbard.

Video: Death Cab For Cutie – “Home Is A Fire”

NYC Taper has posted a recording of The Pains Of Being Pure At Heart’s show at New York’s Webster Hall last week. The band are at The Opera House on August 2.

Beatroute interviews Explosions In The Sky.

Low steps into The AV Club’s Undercover studio and records a cover of Toto’s “Africa”, and damn if they don’t sound amazing.

Wayne Coyne of The Flaming Lips discusses the viability of gummy skulls as the next medium of music delivery with Billboard.