Quantcast

Posts Tagged ‘Saturday Looks Good To Me’

Tuesday, July 9th, 2013

Toronto Urban Roots Fest Day Three

The Hold Steady, Frank Turner, Dawes, and more at TURF 2013

Photo By Frank YangFrank YangWait, what happened to Toronto Urban Roots Fest day two? Exhaustion and a backlog of Hannibal happened, but I was mostly recharged and ready to go for the full-day programmes down at Fort York over this past weekend; Saturday, in particular, was not to be missed as it would be the day that the “R” in “TURF” would stop standing for “roots” and most definitely stand for “rock”.

Los Angeles’ Dawes straddled those two solitudes quite nicely, mind, with their sweet Laurel Canyon-inspired harmonies and songwriting and edge-of-jam-band – yet always totally tasteful – guitar solos courtesy of frontman Taylor Goldsmith; it was an ideal balance of crunchy and smooth, if you’re given to peanut butter analogies. But as solid a frontman as Taylor was, the band’s secret weapon was his brother Griffin, who contributed astonishing backing vocals from behind the kit along with some killer drummer face for good measure. They didn’t draw the biggest mid-afternoon crowd – possibly because they had another headlining show slated for Lee’s Palace later that night – but when those who were there were called on to sing along in “When My Time Comes”, they sounded legion. Very impressive.

The Minneapolis Star Tribune has an interview with Dawes.

Photos: Dawes @ Garrison Commons, West Stage – July 6, 2013
MP3: Dawes – “If I Wanted Someone”
Video: Dawes – “From A Window Seat”
Video: Dawes – “When My Time Comes”
Video: Dawes – “Time Spent In Los Angeles”
Video: Dawes – “Love Is All I Am”

You could arguably file Dartmouth’s Matt Mays alongside Dawes in record stores where “roots-rock” is a distinct thing, but he definitely dwells far more toward the rock end of that spectrum – those who found Dawes a bit sedate or polite was probably delighted by the balls-out approach favoured by Mays and his crew. Though undoubtedly still shaken by the sudden passing of guitarist Jay Smith barely a month earlier, from a performance point of view they were firing on all cylinders with a stock of tunes tailor-made for playing loud in the Summer sun. Theirs was a set of dueling guitars and whipping sweaty hair, and I think my favourite part of their set was after a a particularly energetic number, Mays mouthed “how long?” to the stagehand and incredulously repeated, “Twenty-five minutes?!?” – they were not pacing themselves, and the show was all the better for it.

Photos: Matt Mays @ Garrison Commons, East Stage – July 6, 2013
Video: Matt Mays – “Indio”
Video: Matt Mays – “Take It On Faith”
Video: Matt Mays – “City Of Lakes”
Video: Matt Mays – “Cocaine Cowgirl”
Video: Matt Mays & El Torpedo – “On The Hood”
Video: Matt Mays & El Torpedo – “Tall Trees”

Though as I understand it, he’s a pretty big star in the UK now, I’d somehow managed to never hear Frank Turner & The Sleeping Souls before their set, and all I had to go on was that apparently he gets compared to Billy Bragg a lot. Which is cool, because I like Billy Bragg. As it turns out, that’s not the best reference point because Turner really doesn’t sound like Billy Bragg. Handsome and poshly-accented, his songs sound political but are far vaguer than anything Bragg has ever penned, favouring pub-friendly anthemicism to fiery activism and commentary; more Pogues than Clash. But while it’s unlikely to incite a revolution, that everyman approach makes for some rousing music and there’s no debating his ability to stir up a crowd. Energetic and charismatic, he was quick with the banter and expressing his appreciation for the city – he’s no stranger to Toronto stages – and curried some domestic favour with a sharp cover of The Weakerthans’ “A Plea From A Cat Named Virtue”; a canny move, as everyone loves a cat song.

RTE has an interview with Turner.

Photos: Frank Turner & The Sleeping Souls @ Garrison Commons, West Stage – July 6, 2013
MP3: Frank Turner – “The Roads”
Stream: Frank Turner – “Plea From A Cat Named Virtue”
Video: Frank Turner – “The Way I Tend To Be”
Video: Frank Turner – “Recovery”
Video: Frank Turner – “Four Simple Words”
Video: Frank Turner – “Sailor’s Boots”
Video: Frank Turner – “Wessex Boy”
Video: Frank Turner – “If I Ever Stray”
Video: Frank Turner – “Peggy Sang The Blues”
Video: Frank Turner – “I Still Believe”
Video: Frank Turner – “Try This At Home”
Video: Frank Turner – “Isabel”
Video: Frank Turner – “Poetry Of The Deed”
Video: Frank Turner – “The Road”
Video: Frank Turner – “Long Live The Queen”
Video: Frank Turner – “I Knew Prufrock Before He Was Famous”
Video: Frank Turner – “Reasons Not To Be An Idiot”
Video: Frank Turner – “Photosynthesis”
Video: Frank Turner – “The Real Damage”
Video: Frank Turner – “Vital Signs”
Video: Frank Turner – “Casanova Lament”

My relationship with Toronto’s own Lowest of The Low is a long one. Anyone who knew me in my late teens/early twenties – or read this post from 2007 knew that they were easily my favourite band going and hugely important to me, and so when they announced that after their 2000 reunion turned into a going concern, they were again hanging it up for good with a final hometown show that December, it stirred all kinds of memories and nostalgia and whatever, and I bid them farewell. Well, of course they didn’t actually split up, as some 2010 one-off shows turned into tours and more shows and though I probably wouldn’t have gone to them anyways, I felt that I needed to boycott them on principle. Happily, I’ve gotten over myself and allowed that the band is allowed to do whatever the hell they want, and thankfully was able to actually enjoy their TURF set rather than grumble about it.

Interestingly, they were back down to a four-piece – founding bassist David Alexander remained absent, but utility player Lawrence Nichols was no longer in the fold – and while they did roll out some new songs, noting that they were going back into the studio to record a fourth album, it was the old tunes that made the day. I still know all the words to “Eternal Fatalist”, “Bleed A Little While Tonight”, and “Rosy & Grey” and probably will until the day I die – and even though Stephen Stanley’s guitar was nearly inaudible in the mix for the first half of the set, I was able to hum every solo as well. They weren’t that tight up there, certainly not compared to the full-time touring outfits sharing the bill with them, but were good enough for rock’n’roll and Hawkins is still a sharp and funny frontman. Not sure about that hair, though, Ron.

Photos: The Lowest Of The Low @ Garrison Commons, East Stage – July 6, 2013
MP3: The Lowest Of The Low – “Gamble”
MP3: The Lowest Of The Low – “The Dogs Of February”
MP3: The Lowest Of The Low – “Bleed A Little While Tonight”
MP3: The Lowest Of The Low – “Subversives”
MP3: The Lowest Of The Low – “The Unbearable Lightness Of Jean” (live)
Video: The Lowest Of The Low – “Rosy & Grey” (live)
Video: The Lowest Of The Low – “The Last Recidivist”
Video: The Lowest Of The Low – “Eternal Fatalist”

And then The Hold Steady. Because I’d seen them so so so many times in a three-year span, I didn’t realize that it had actually been over four years since I saw Craig Finn and the boys do their thing. The upside of this is that it made our reunion at TURF all that more joyous, though anything Hold Steady is bound to be joyous regardless.

After a series of introductions – festival organizer intro-ed sportscaster Dave Hodge who intro-ed superfan Frank Turner who finally intro-ed the band before running down into the pit to rock out to the show – The Hold Steady took the stage to the biggest cheers of the day and put on a clinic about the power and celebratory spirit of rock’n’roll. Powering through a seventeen-song set that gave about equal time to all their records including the new one they’d be going into the studio to record this week, the band were in excellent form with Finn in extra-good spirits from seeing his Minnesota Twins shut out the hometown Blue Jays down the street earlier in the afternoon. Having missed the Heaven Is Whenever tour entirely, it was my first time seeing them without keyboardist Franz Nicolay, and while his keyboard flourishes and sartorial flair were missed, new guitarist Steve Selvidge endeared himself with some Thin Lizzy-esque lead lines with Tad Kubler. And even after it was done, it wasn’t as the roaring audience demanded that rarest of beasts – an encore from anyone but the last act of the night, they rip-roared through “Stay Positive”; Frank Turner leapt onstage to add vocals, but we all knew the “whoa-oh-oh”s. Exhausting and exhilarating.

Photos: The Hold Steady @ Garrison Commons, West Stage – July 6, 2013
MP3: The Hold Steady – “Hurricane J”
MP3: The Hold Steady – “Sequestered In Memphis”
MP3: The Hold Steady – “Stay Positive”
MP3: The Hold Steady – “Chips Ahoy!”
MP3: The Hold Steady – “Stuck Between Stations”
Video: The Hold Steady – “Stay Positive”
Video: The Hold Steady – “Chips Ahoy!”
Video: The Hold Steady – “Stuck Between Stations”
Video: The Hold Steady – “Your Little Hoodrat Friend”
Video: The Hold Steady – “The Swish”

Speaking of rock… Drive-By Truckers haven’t been through town in a while – not since November 2011 behind their last full-length Go-Go Boots, what with both Patterson Hood and Mike Cooley working on solo projects and the departures of bassist Shona Tucker and guitarist John Neff, but the Truckers are back on the road and will be at The Phoenix on November 2 with Old 97’s, who themselves haven’t been to town since Spring 2011, along as support. Not sure if this means there’s new records on the way from either of them, but I get the feeling folks will be perfectly happy to hear the old stuff. NYC Taper has posted a recording of an Old 97s show in Brooklyn last week, if you want to hear what Rhett and the boys are sounding like these days.

MP3: Drive-By Truckers – “Used To Be A Cop”
MP3: Old 97’s – “Brown-Haired Daughter”

Exclaim has specifics on the new double-album from Quasi, who are marking their twentieth anniversary as a band with Mole City, out October 1. There’s a trailer and advance MP3 to inspect.

MP3: Quasi – “You Can Stay But You Got To Go”
Trailer: Quasi / Mole City

Cincinnati CityBeat welcomes home native sons The National with a feature interview.

NPR has a World Cafe session with Black Rebel Motorcycle Club, who also just rolled out a new video from Specter At The Feast.

Video: Black Rebel Motorcycle Club – “Hate The Taste”

Daytrotter has posted a session with Saturday Looks Good To Me.

Future Bible Heroes have released a new video from their latest album Partygoing, which will surely make up for the sting of knowing that their show at Lee’s Palace, originally set for later this month, has been canceled. But that happened ages ago, so you already knew that, right? Right.

Video: Future Bible Heroes – “Living, Loving, Partygoing”

Titus Andronicus have rolled out a new album from last year’s Local Business and are already taking preorders for their fourth album, due for release next year.

Video: Titus Andronicus – “Still Life With Hot Deuce And Silver Platter”

Under The Radar interviews Wayne Coyne of The Flaming Lips.

Consequence Of Sound has compiled and impressive oral history of Big Star.

Friday, June 28th, 2013

Daddy Was A Real Good Dancer

The Dismemberment Plan still have a plan to dismember you. And a new record.

Photo By Shervin Lainez Shervin Lainez 2013 has been a pretty great year for reunited/formerly retired acts releasing good to excellent new albums after many, many years – hat tip to David Bowie and My Bloody Valentine – and now it’s time to hope that Washington DC’s Dismemberment Plan keeps that streak going. This isn’t to suggest that the D-Plan are or ever were of the status of those others; a unique and spazzy/funky amalgam of post-punk, hardcore, and experimental art-pop, they were never fated to be more than a cult act but those who liked them, liked them a lot.

Still, they disbanded in 2003 and after frontman Travis Morrison’s solo debut Travistan was Pitchfork-ed through the heart, the odds of hearing from him again in any context seemed unlikely. There was a one-off D-Plan reunion show in 2007, sure, but in 2009 Morrison, after one more solo album in All Y’All, declared himself retired from music. Of course that proved to be untrue, and the Plan reunited for sporadic shows in 2011, continuing into 2012 with some new material thrown in the mix.

Which brings us to Uncanney Valley, the band’s fifth album and first in 12 years since 2001’s Change, out October 15. The Dismemberment Plan was always so unique and no one ever replicated what they did so well – or even tried – that a new record might well prove to simultaneously be a very welcome breath of fresh air and a blast from the past. Pitchfork has details on the new record as well as an interview with Morrison – nice to see no grudges are held – and while no samples of the new record have been released, we can still dig up some classic tunes and tilt the expectation-o-meter a little more towards excitement than trepidation.

And one can only hope that the new album will result in more touring – the band’s final Toronto show at Rockit in July 2003 and the “Death & Dismemberment” tour with Death Cab For Cutie at The Reverb in early 2002 were off-the-charts fun. Would love the opportunity to see them again (without hopping on a plane).

MP3: The Dismemberment Plan – “It’s So You”
MP3: The Dismemberment Plan – “You Are Invited”
MP3: The Dismemberment Plan – “The Things That Matter”
MP3: The Dismemberment Plan – “Superpowers”

Calexico has released a new EP led by a track from last year’s Algiers and intended for physical sale – at least for the moment – on their European tour only, though they promise a North American release is to come and you can get it digitally as of June 29. But you can stream Maybe On Monday right now, including its covers of Elvis Costello’s “Shabby Doll” and The Replacements’ “Unsatisfied”.

Stream: Calexico / Maybe On Monday

Yeah Yeah Yeahs have become the first band to record a video atop the Empire State Building and proven that the only thing you can really do atop the Empire State Building is run around it. The song is the latest single from Mosquito and the band are at Echo Beach on July 1.

Video: Yeah Yeah Yeahs – “Despair”

Spin has got a stream of Iron & Wine’s contribution to the soundtrack to The Lone Ranger. The soundtrack is out July 2, the movie July 3, and Iron & Wine play The Sound Academy on September 28.

Stream: Iron & Wine – “Rattling Bone”

You can now hear a couple songs from the new Scud Mountain Boys record Do You Love The Sun? courtesy of BrooklynVegan. The record is out July 9.

MP3: Scud Mountain Boys – “Double Bed”
Stream: Scud Mountain Boys – “Do You Love The Sun?”

NYC Taper has got a recording of Wilco’s amazing all-request, mostly-covers set at their Solid Sound festival last weekend. Look at that set list and tell me you don’t want to spend the time it’ll take to download it. I imagine we’ll get a more conventional show when they play The Molson Amphitheatre supporting Bob Dylan on July 15.

The next record from Explosions In The Sky won’t be a proper follow-up to 2011’s Take Care, Take Care, Take Care, but the soundtrack to the Paul Rudd film Prince Avalanche. The film is out August 9, the soundtrack August 6, and one of the songs – written with composer David Wingo – has a video. Explosions In The Sky play The Air Canada Centre on October 4 opening for Nine Inch Nails.

Video: Explosions In The Sky w David Wingo – “Wading”

Under The Radar has more specifics on Okkervil River’s new full-length The Silver Gymnasium, out September 3. They play The Phoenix on September 28.

Matablog offers details on Kim Gordon’s first post/side-Sonic Youth project, entitled Body/Head and releasing their first album Coming Apart on September 10.

Janelle Monáe’s new album finally has a release date; The Electric Lady will be in stores on September 10. And damn, is her handwriting nice.

Willis Earl Beal has announced details of his second album, Nobody Knows. It’s out September 10 and a first track is available to stream below. More details at Under The Radar.

Stream: Willis Earl Beal – “Everything Unwinds”

Spin has compiled an oral history of Liz Phair’s landmark Exile In Guyville on the occasion of the record’s 20th anniversary.

I’ve been meaning to give Katie Crutchfield’s Waxahatchee and her second album Cerulean Salt a proper write-up for a little while now, but just haven’t gotten around to it. But given that with the record’s European release, it’s available to stream in whole at NME right now, you may as well just go and listen to it and not worry about what I have to say about it save that it’s really terrific. There’s feature interviews with Crutchfield at The Guardian, The Line Of Best Fit, NPR, and Time.

Video: Waxahatchee – “Coast To Coast”
Stream: Waxahatchee / Cerulean Salt

Also from NYC Taper and Solid Sound is Low’s set from the festival, as well as one from Brooklyn a few days earlier.

Chart talks to Fred Thomas of Saturday Looks Good To Me.

It was more shrugs than tears when it was announced Kim Deal was leaving Pixies earlier this month, what with the band having been more nostalgia profiteers than trailblazing artists since their reunion in 2004, but with the surprise drop of a new song – with Deal on it – this morning, we are reminded of how great they still could have been in the 21st century had they wanted to, and yes, a tear. Unless, of course, this isn’t the end but some sort of beginning…?

MP3: Pixies – “Bagboy”
Video: Pixies – “Bagboy”

Wednesday, May 8th, 2013

Sleepwalking

Deerhunter coming to town to play you songs, raid your mom’s closet

Photo By Robert SemmerRobert SemmerOn the list of ideal days on which to announce a tour itinerary, there’s not many occasions better than the day the album you’re actually going to promote goes on sale. And so yesterday, with the official release of their latest full-length Monomania, Atlanta’s Deerhunter have announced the itinerary for their Fall tour behind it. It’s an outing that brings them to The Phoenix in Toronto on September 12, and that leg of the tour also includes support from Marnie Stern, who herself released The Chronicles Of Marnia in March. Tickets for the show will run $20 in advance.

Also good to run on or around the release date of an album are feature pieces on them. And so, peruse these interviews with the ever-quotable Bradford Cox at The Salt Lake Tribune, MTV Hive, Pitchfork, and Interview. Marnie Stern is interviewed by The Washington Examiner, Soundcheck WNYC, MTV Hive, and Heeb.

Video: Deerhunter – “Monomania”
Video: Marnie Stern – “Immortals”

Also coming to town – chiptune champtions Anamanaguchi are going to be at The Hoxton on May 23, tickets $12. Their Kickstarted new album Endless Fantasy is out May 14.

MP3: Anamanaguchi – “Meow”

Los Angeles indie-R&B sibling duo Inc. have announced a North American tour that brings them to The Garrison on June 4. Their debut No World came out back in February.

MP3: Inc. – “5 Days”
MP3: Inc. – “The Place”

Also from LA but working a more electro-pop yet still soulful angle are Superhumanoids, who will be in town at The Drake on June 18. Yours Truly recently posted a video session with the band.

MP3: Superhumanoids – “Simple Severin”

Bear In Heaven have been announced as support for Wire for their July 10 date at Lee’s Palace.

MP3: Bear In Heaven – “The Reflection Of You”

Following her triumphant local debut in February, there wasn’t much question that Solange would be back sooner rather than later. And just like that, she’s made a date at The Kool Haus on July 13, tickets $26.50.

Video: Solange – “Losing You”

Also subscribing to the Deerhunter model of “announce your tour the day your record comes out” are Savages, who accompanied yesterday’s release of their debut Silence Yourself with a brace of North American dates announced via Matablog; they’ll be back in Toronto on July 16 for a show at The Mod Club, tickets $16.50. Interview has a brief feature on the band.

Video: Savages – “Shut Up”

Australian songstress Lenka – she did that adorable song in Moneyball, that Aaron Sorkin film about baseball that you of course would remember adorable songs from – will be at The Drake on July 24, tickets $15. Her new album Shadows will be out on June 4.

Video: Lenka – “The Show”

Brooklyn’s Oberhofer haven’t released a full-length follow-up to last year’s Time Capsules II yet, but the Nostalgia EP that came out last month seems to be enough pretence to hit the road; they’re at The Garrison on August 1, tickets $11.50.

MP3: Oberhofer – “Dontneedya”

We’ve only just started gotten to enjoy Spring and/or Summer, but if you need a reason to look forward to Autumn, perhaps the double-bill of Toro Y Moi and The Sea & Cake – the former touring this year’s Anything In Return and the latter last year’s Runner – will do it. The solid double-bill will be at The Phoenix on October 27, tickets $20. The Independent has an interview with Toro Y Moi’s Chaz Bundick.

MP3: Toro Y Moi – “Saturday Love”
MP3: The Sea & Cake – “On And On”

That star-studded yet endlessly contentious Great Gatsby OST came out this week and has also been streaming at NPR. So if you want to hear what next year’s CD dollar bin – if such a thing still existed – sounds like, head on over.

Stream: The Great Gatsby original soundtrack

Pitchfork has an advance stream of the self-titled debut from Dungeonesse, due out next week on May 14.

MP3: Dungeonesse – “Nightlight”
Stream: Dungeonesse / Dungeonesse

Vampire Weekend are a week out from the release of their new record Modern Vampires Of The City, and so of course it must be streaming. And so it is, at iTunes. They’re at the Sony Centre on May 16 and are the subject of feature interviews at Pitchfork and The New York Times.

Stream: Vampire Weekend / Modern Vampires Of The City

FVCKTHEMEDIA and CMJ have interviews with Laura Stevenson about her new record Wheel, which she’s in town to promote at The Drake Underground on May 21.

aux.tv, Blurt, Georgia Straight, and The Fly talk to Hutch Harris of The Thermals, coming to town to play The Horseshoe on May 21.

Paste has an advance stream of the new Saturday Looks Good To Me record One Kiss Ends It All, out May 21.

Stream: Saturday Looks Good To Me / One Kiss Ends It All

NPR has premiered the first video from Kurt Vile’s latest, Wakin’ On A Pretty Daze. He and his Violators play the Toronto Urban Roots Fest at Garrison Commons on July 7.

Video: Kurt Vile – “Never Run Away”

Yeah Yeah Yeahs have released a video for the title track of their latest, Mosquito.

Video: Yeah Yeah Yeahs – “Mosquito”

The Flaming Lips have a new video from The Terror – the NSFW caveat pretty much goes without saying, doesn’t it? – and there’s interviews at Stereogum, Loud & Quiet, and Bon Appetit.

Video: The Flaming Lips – “You Lust”

Janelle Monáe has released the first video from her next album The Electric Lady, due out later this year.

Video: Janelle Monáe w Erykah Badu – “Q.U.E.E.N.”

NPR, Seattle Weekly, and Aquarium Drunkard talk to Caitlin Rose.

Blurt profiles The Men.

NPR has a World Cafe session with Low.

Pitchfork gets an update from the studio from Spoon. Who are in the studio.

Monday, April 8th, 2013

The Stand-In

Caitlin Rose and Andrew Combs at The Garrison in Toronto

Photo By Frank YangFrank YangThough I’m probably a bit late to the Caitlin Rose party, her 2010 full-length debut Own Side Now having completely flown under my radar, I’m thankful that I was able to get it into my ears earlier this year before her follow-up The Stand-In came out because it gave me a reference point to appreciate just how good The Stand-In is. Which is not to say that there’s anything wrong with Own Side Now at all – it’s a charming slice of old school country that frames Rose as something of a wide-eyed ingenue, a character well-suited to her sweet, clear vocals – it just felt a touch more demure than it necessarily needed to be.

The Stand-In doesn’t trade in the back porch for a roadhouse, mind you, but it’s more electrified, dynamic, and bristling with bona fide pop hooks that don’t compromise Rose’s natural rootsiness, just gives it a swagger that looks and sounds great on her. Where Own Side politely asked to come in and sat genteelly, The Stand-In barges in and demanded attention – which I was happy to give it, as it currently stands as one of my favourite records of the year. So obviously I was going to be at The Garrison on Friday night to see her tour new record through town.

And an efficient tour it was, with Andrew Combs doing double-duty as both Rose’s rhythm guitarist and opening act. Also hailing from Nashville – if the cowboy hat, denim shirt, and boots didn’t make that clear – Combs started out solo and then slowly enlisted the rest of Rose’s band to back up his voice, possessing the right balance of twang and rasp without sounding affected, and fill out a set of satisfying country-rock drawing from his debut Worried Man. If Combs can make the sort of leap that Rose did between his this album and his next, he could be one to watch.

Warmed up from their opening set, all the band needed to kick off the main set was for Caitlin Rose step out from behind the merch table and take centre stage. A six-piece band might have seemed like a lot of musical overhead for a still-emerging artist playing small rooms, but there was no arguing with the results. Even though the songs on The Stand-In are strong enough to have been able to impress with a simpler presentation, it was wonderful to be able to hear all the lines and textures of the recordings rendered live and enhanced in parts – the four-part backing harmonies on “I Was Cruel” were unexpected and beautiful.

And with such a high performance bar set by her band, Rose actually had trouble keeping up for the first portion of the show. Not in voice – she sounded great – but despite some warm and friendly banter she seemed somewhat detached onstage, often staring up at the ceiling when she stepped back from the mic; less leading her band than fading back into it. It didn’t feel like disinterest as much as a sort of shyness, which was surprising considering how brassily she comes across on record.

Happily, this improved as the set progressed – helped out with a few drinks – and while she charming throughout the show, she was visibly more at ease by the end of the main set, comprised of a lot of The Stand-In, a healthy dollop of Own Side, and ceding the spotlight back to Andrew Combs for one of his own songs on which they duetted. “Everywhere I Go” would have been wonderful to hear, but probably didn’t fit the flow of the show. Following a solo reading of “Sinful Wishing Well”, she called the band back out for a raucous interpretation of Buck Owens’ “Tiger By The Tail” and Own Side highlight “Shanghai Cigarettes”. According to the set list, this should have been the end of the encore but Rose was called back by the audience and obliged with a real encore of an a capella ode to a Dave Edmunds t-shirt. A winning finale to a show that didn’t necessarily start slow, but certainly ended on all cylinders.

The Singing Lamb and Panic Manual also have reviews of the show, and The Washington Examiner and Red Eye have interviews with Rose.

Photos: Caitlin Rose, Andrew Combs @ The Garrison – April 5, 2013
MP3: Caitlin Rose – “I Was Cruel”
Video: Caitlin Rose – “Only A Clown”
Video: Caitlin Rose – “Piledriver Waltz”
Video: Caitlin Rose – “Own Side”
Video: Caitlin Rose – “Shanghai Cigarettes”

With the 10th anniversary edition of Give Up out this week, Jimmy Tamborello of The Postal Service gives CBC Music the inside story on some of their most beloved songs and confesses to Exclaim that the new songs on the anniversary edition of the album aren’t Give Up outtakes but remnants of an aborted second album; he also talks about the record with The Irish Independent. The Postal Service are at The Air Canada Centre on June 11.

Iron & Wine’s new album Ghost On Ghost is out next week and doing the advance stream thing at NPR. Sam Beam talks about the new album with The Hollywood Reporter.

Stream: Iron & Wine / Ghost On Ghost

Noisey has got last week’s listening party/Q&A of the new Yeah Yeah Yeahs record Mosquito archived on their site; it’s presently the only place to hear the whole of the new record before its out April 16.

The Sun and Spinner asked questions of Flaming Lips frontman Wayne Coyne, who also hosted a Reddit “Ask Me Anything” last week. Their new album The Terror is out next week on April 16 and streaming in whole at NPR.

Stream: The Flaming Lips / The Terror

NPR has a World Cafe session and MTV Hive an interview with Jim James, who hits The Phoenix on April 24.

Buzzfeed elicits some serious Morrissey hate from Bradford Cox by way of a Deerhunter interview. Their new album Monomania is out May 7.

Drowned In Sound interviews Black Rebel Motorcycle Club, in town at The Kool Haus on May 9.

Finally, the first official taste of the new National album Trouble Will Fine Me, out May 21. They headline Yonge-Dundas Square for NXNE on June 14.

Video: The National – “Demons”

Spin has premiered another track from the new Saturday Looks Good To Me album One Kiss Ends It All, out May 21.

Stream: Saturday Looks Good To Me – “Break In”

Though the existence of Centro-Matic/New Year/Pedro The Lion supergroup Overseas was announced way back last Spring, the fruits of the Will Johnson-David Bazan-Kadane Brothers alchemy will finally be available to hear via their self-titled debut on June 13. Two songs are available to stream on their site, and it sounds exactly as you’d think a combination of those talents would – wonderful.

The Skinny talks to Kurt Vile, who brings Wakin’ On A Pretty Daze to the Toronto Urban Roots Fest at Garrison Commons on July 7.

Also playing TURF that day are Yo La Tengo, whose James McNew is interviewed at Loud & Quiet.

Cat Power has released a new video from Sun.

Video: Cat Power – “Manhattan”

The Current has got a video session with Low.

Wednesday, March 6th, 2013

Silver Age

Bob Mould and Now, Now at The Horseshoe in Toronto

Photo By Frank YangFrank YangUnderstand that I am in no way, shape, or form complaining, but I was pretty surprised when it was announced that Bob Mould would be playing The Horseshoe this past Friday night. Not that one legendary artist doesn’t deserve a legendary venue, but considering that his profile arguably higher than its been in years thanks to a 2012 that included the 20th anniversary Sugar reissues and tour, the publication of his memoirs, and his best-received new album in some time with Silver Age, to say nothing of the fact that he hadn’t played Toronto in almost half a decade, I thought he’d have been booked into a larger room. At least something on the scale of Lee’s or The Mod Club, where he played the last two times through including the last time I saw him here at home in Fall 2005. But no, it was to be The Horseshoe and so unsurprisingly it was sold out and jammed and primed to go off.

Amidst the… older demographic that was gathered to see Mould celebrate his 30-plus year career, were a smattering of decidedly younger attendees who you could reasonably assume were here to see the opener. Minneapolis trio Now, Now – formerly Now, Now Every Children – have been through town a number of times, but usually attached to bills of a more pop-punk-emo persuasion. That’s why, despite having liked them for a few years, I’d only finally gotten to see them live at SXSW 2011 where I wouldn’t have to sit a half-dozen sets of tattoos and asymmetrical haircuts. Which is not to say that that’s not their natural scene – their thoughtful grunge-pop with downcast lyrics but delivered with big smiles is definitely of a genre – but thanks to Cacie Dalager’s terrifically emotive vocals and their sharp sense of melody, they’re also better than most of that genre and can definitely break to broader appeal. Their latest album Threads was both produced and released by Death Cab For Cutie’s Chris Walla, and his band’s path is one that, with a few lucky breaks and soundtrack placements, Now, Now could reasonably follow them down.

Local fans might have felt disappointed that last year’s Copper Blue tour, wherein Mould, bassist Jason Narducy, and drummer Jon Wurster played the whole of 1992’s seminal Sugar debut in its entirety, didn’t come to town – I was lucky enough to catch one of those shows at SXSW 2012 – but if anyone thought that meant he wouldn’t continue to lean heavily on one of his most-loved records… well they’d have been dead wrong. Mould could have exulted in the roaring response from the audience as he took the stage – it’d have been well-earned – but instead he and his band got straight to work, tearing through side A of Copper Blue in sequence with brutal efficiency. This accomplished two things – it got the audience further worked up into a sweaty lather and got those songs out of the way.

The next block of songs focused on Silver Age and confirmed that these compositions were, as many have pointed out, Mould’s most Sugar-like in years, their balance of melody and white noise existing quite comfortably alongside the older numbers. The new material also elicited more furious guitar soloing from Mould, perhaps him feeling these songs still had room to improvise whereas the Sugar songs were fixed for the ages. Silver Age properly serviced, Sugar material began creeping back into the set, first with a couple of unexpected songs from Beaster – I don’t know that I’ve ever heard any Beaster material live – and then “Your Favorite Thing” from the underrated File Under: Easy Listening.

Finally, inevitably, it was time to reach into the Hüsker Dü songbook for “I Apologize” and “Chartered Trips” before wrapping back in the 21st century with Silver Age standout “Keep Believing”. The first encore contained the only non-Silver Age selection from his solo repertoire – “Egoverride” from his 1996 eponymous effort – and one more Copper Blue selection in “If I Can’t Change Your Mind”, while the second encore deviated from their regular set by inviting local music scribe Sam Sutherland onstage to lead a quick and furious cover of The Viletones’ “Screaming Fist” before closing for good with another trifecta of Hüsker songs.

It was a pulverizing set start to finish – the 15 songs of the main set clocked in at under an hour – but with Mould’s glasses fogged and shirt soaked from the sweat and steam of the crowd and Narducy and Wurster somehow managing to match his energy joule for joule, there was no question they’d given their all. And it answered the question of why they played a smaller room than they probably could have – small space, huge pressure, massive explosion. Legendary.

NOW and Backstage Rider also have reviews of the show and The Sydney Morning Herald an interview. Mould is back in the region on August 3 as part of The Grove Festival in Niagara-On-The-Lake.

Photos: Bob Mould, Now, Now @ The Horseshoe – March 1, 2013
MP3: Bob Mould – “The Silence Between Us”
MP3: Now, Now – “Dead Oaks”
MP3: Now, Now – “Thread”
MP3: Now, Now – “School Friend”
MP3: Now, Now – “Neighbors”
MP3: Now, Now – “Roommates”
MP3: Now, Now Every Children – “Everyone You Know”
MP3: Now, Now Every Children – “Sleep Through Summer”
MP3: Now, Now Every Children – “Cars”
Video: Bob Mould – “Star Machine”
Video: Bob Mould – “The Descent”
Video: Bob Mould – “Egoverride”
Video: Bob Mould – “Slay/Sway”
Video: Bob Mould – “It’s Too Late”
Video: Sugar – “Gee Angel”
Video: Sugar – “Believe What You’re Saying”
Video: Sugar – “Tilted”
Video: Sugar – “Helpless”
Video: Sugar – “Changes”
Video: Sugar – “If I Can’t Change Your Mind”
Video: Hüsker Dü – “Could You Be The One”
Video: Hüsker Dü – “Don’t Want To Know If You Are Lonely”
Video: Hüsker Dü – “Makes No Sense At All”
Video: Hüsker Dü – “Love Is All Around”
Video: Now, Now – “Dead Oaks”
Video: Now, Now – “Thread”
Video: Now, Now Every Children – “Friends With My Sister”

Caitlin Rose has marked the release this week of her new record The Stand-In with a new video, premiered over at Billboard. She plays The Garrison on April 5.

Video: Caitlin Rose – “Only A Clown”

Brooklyn’s The Men are the topic of conversations at Consequence Of Sound, The Village Voice, Spin, and Interview what with their new record New Moon coming out this week.

The new Son Volt album Honky Tonk, out this week, is available to stream in whole over at American Songwriter. Blurt, The Wall Street Journal, Rolling Stone, and The Riverfront Times have feature pieces on the band.

Stream: Son Volt / Honky Tonk

Ra Ra Riot have premiered a new video from their latest Beta Love. They play Lee’s Palace tonight – March 6 – and are back on June 8 as part of the Field Trip fest at Fort York.

Video: Ra Ra Riot – “Dance With Me”

Drowned In Sound talks to Alan Sparkhawk of Low. They play The Great Hall on March 16 and The Invisible Way is out March 19.

The Dumbing Of America has an interview with Black Rebel Motorcycle Club, who are prepping for the March 19 release of their new album Specter Af The Feast by giving away an EP for the first single from their website. They play The Kool Haus on May 9.

Also at Dumbing Of America – an interview with Local Natives, who’re at The Phoenix on March 28.

The Black Angels are streaming a new song off their forthcoming Indigo Meadow, out April 2, with some supporting words at Rolling Stone. The new album brings them to The Danforth Music Hall on April 13.

Stream: The Black Angels – “Evil Things”

Even though The Flaming Lips have a new record in The Terror coming out April 2, Pitchfork wants to talk about their old albums, offering up a video oral history of The Soft Bulletin.

Steve Earle has released the first video from his forthcoming album The Low Highway, due out April 16.

Video: Steve Earle – “Invisible”

CBC Music talks to The Thermals, whose have a bunch of reissues out this week and a new record in Desperate Ground out April 16.

Billboard and Rolling Stone have features on Yeah Yeah Yeahs and their new record Mosquito, which comes out April 16.

Exclaim and Men’s Journal has questions for Jim James. He is at The Phoenix on April 24.

Saturday Looks Good To Me have announced details of their comeback album One Kiss Ends It All, out May 21, and made the first song from it available to stream.

Stream: Saturday Looks Good To Me – “Invisible Friend”

Consequence Of Sound has details on the 25th anniversary reissue of R.E.M.’s Green, which will come with the requisite remastering and second disc of period-correct live show. It’s out May 14.

Entertainment Weekly reports The Hold Steady will contribute a new song to the soundtrack of the upcoming season of Game Of Thrones. The show premieres March 31 and they play the Toronto Urban Roots Fest at Fort York on July 4.

NPR has a video session with Yo La Tengo, back in town at the Toronto Urban Roots Fest on July 7.

Spinner interviews Ted Leo on the occasion of Hearts Of Oak‘s tenth anniversary.