Monday, May 10, 2010

Upcoming Shows - Week Ending May 16th

Friday, May 14th - Subterranean - 9:30pm - $10
Headliner: Hurricane Bells
Openers: King Sparrow, Verona Red

Another show that somehow nearly snuck by us, Hurricane Bells is the folk-rock side-project from Longwave frontman Steve Schiltz. Schiltz wrote, played, recorded, and mixed the album entirely himself with his MacBook and an Mbox. His original plan was to release the album himself, but when a b-side ended up on the New Moon soundtrack, the project caught the attention of Vagrant Records. One listen to any of the album, Tonight Is The Ghost, and it is easy to understand why. Definitely a show worth catching.

Saturday, May 15th - The Vic - 7:30pm - $24
Headliner: Josh Ritter
Opener: Joe Pug

Singer-songwriter, Josh Ritter is back on with a new album, So The World Runs Away. Ritter is a classic songwriter, who can tell a story in the space of a song the way only the classic folk writers could. The sparkling folk and homespun, thoughtful lyrics are a rarity nowadays.

Frightened Rabbit and Maps & Atlases - May 8th 2010

Chicago's Maps & Atlases used their opening set in front of Frightened Rabbit at Metro Saturday to win over the sold-out crowd, and succeeded in gaining a boatload of new fans before the June release of their debut album, Perch Patchwork. Though they are often described as 'math rock', the awkward label does not quite do them justice. Take the shifting world-music rhythms of Paul Simon, throw in wildly flickering angular riffs balanced against mellow folksy guitar, and front the project by a second-cousin to Jim James' aching southern-drenched yowl, and you are close to their oddly compelling sound. You would be tempted to hear the wiry, frantic guitars and sharp-turns of the beats and label them progressive, but their strong pop sensibilities made it feel more engaging than what you normally find in music this complex and experimental.

Maps & Atlases somehow succeeded at being the best of both worlds in indie pop and prog-rock, inserting just enough of their jam band tendencies and mesmerizing guitar skills, making their upcoming debut LP a must-hear. In the course of their half-hour set, they won over the room to the point that a large portion of the crowd were dancing and clapping along. Maps & Atlases were refreshingly unique and challenging, proving to be a strangely addictive band worth keeping an eye on in the world of indie rock.

Scotland's finest export, Frightened Rabbit took the stage for the first time in Chicago as a five-piece; having added guitarist Gordon Skene while recording The Winter Of Mixed Drinks. The band opened the show big, with the steady surge from quiet angst that greets "Skip The Youth" to its thrashing conclusion. They made excellent use of the added member on "The Modern Leper" by wisely throwing four guitars at the shaggy crowd-pleasing opener from their 2008 masterpiece, The Midnight Organ Fight, with, front man, Scott Hutchison passionately bleeding out the emotional lyrics. It is Hutchinson's way of urgently belting out the songs as if it were the first time he sung them that keeps Frightened Rabbit so fresh. Even songs like, the piano thrusting plea for loving, "The Twist" feel different and vibrant each time you see the band live because of how willing Hutchison is to throw himself into the songs.

As wonderful as Hutchison is, as evidenced by his haunting encore-opening solo-acoustic performance of "Poke", the band's layered guitars and slamming beats by brother Grant Hutchison hit just as hard as the biting lyrics. The enthusiastic, sold-out crowd needed no cue to jump in on the clap-a-long beat of explosive anthem "The Loneliness And The Scream", where the web of riffs filled the venue brilliantly. Skene worked an extra drum on the right of the stage for "The Wrestle", though Hutchison's expressive, thundering drum skills needed no help. The band did an excellent job with the set list, nailing just about everything they could to please the fans in the hour-and-fifteen-minutes. It was unfortunate to get nothing off their debut, but when the last two albums you release eclipse it by such a large margin, it is hard to argue with the decision.

Hutchison announced, calmly swaying break-up tune, "Swim Until You Can't See Land" as one he wrote after watching The Wackness. The band delivered spiteful rebound rocker "Nothing Like You" with frantically sprayed riffs shooting around the cathartic hook. The blood-pumping shimmy of "Head Rolls Off" and bitter waltz of "Good Arms Vs. Bad Arms" left the crowd too riled up to leave; though the stomping "Living In Colour" and thumping, organ-humming plea, "It takes more than f*cking someone to keep yourself warm", of "Keep Yourself Warm" would do nothing to settle them down. The soul-baring, dazzling songs come through too loud and clear live to send anyone home calm.

At one point, Hutchison took stock of the largest venue they have played in Chicago and commented, "This is still kind of big for us". They had better get used to it, because the crowds will only swell as more get wind of just how fantastic a live band they are. Frightened Rabbit is one of the most honest and exciting bands going, and should not be missed at all costs. Next stop here, on their ascent to indie rock royalty, is Lollapalooza. After that, who knows what size venues they will be filling, but we can assure you that their sound and live chops are more than ready for stadiums.

Skip The Youth
The Modern Leper
Old Old Fashioned
The Loneliness And The Scream
The Wrestle
The Twist
Swim Until You Can't See Land
My Backwards Walk
Nothing Like You
Head Rolls Off
Good Arms Vs. Bad Arms

Living In Colour
Keep Yourself Warm

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Canasta - May 8th 2010

Chicago’s own, Canasta celebrated the release of their sophomore album, The Fakeout, The Tease And The Breather, with two shows at Schubas on Saturday night. With a horn section joining the sextet on stage for several of the songs, the last song of the set sums up the experience of the early show; the sexy, soulful groove of “Reading The Map Upside Down”. At the end of the funk-laced number, front man, Matt Priest’s awestruck expression and uttered “wow” matched the vibe of the crowd. He joked, “We may never play another show after tonight”, expressing just how hard it would be to top the version of the song with horns in tow. If you missed the Saturday night shows, you definitely missed out on a special experience.

The night kicked off with the first four tracks from the band’s excellent new release, which was a gutsy move given the slow-burning build-up of, seven-minute epic, “Becoming You” that opens the album. The gorgeous melody that seeps into your skin in the song came through great live, as did the excellent violin work of Elizabeth Lindau. The band’s ability to pull off the rich, layered sounds on stage made the horns that would show up later in the set feel like the cherry on top; a delicious garnish, but essential to their sonic charms. The gradual climb to eruption on the song led well into the party that broke out on stage for the triumphant “Mexico City”. The shout-a-long hook and fantastic violin solo ensure that it will quickly join “Slow Down Chicago” and “Microphone Song” as a fan favorite, providing them with an early ‘holy shit’ moment.

While bands can easily falter pulling off a note-for-note recreation of the album on-stage, by not giving fans anything unexpected, Canasta’s lush sounds and added oomph songs receive live keep everything feeling fresh and vibrant. When a band can hold a room’s attention for quieter songs they may have not yet heard, like velvety bliss of “I Don’t Know Where I Was Going With This”, you know they have the goods. Explaining that they would not repeat much of the older material in the late show, getting both the jazzy, religious-themed “Shadowcat” and upbeat duet “Sympathetic Vibrations” was a pleasant surprise. It was hard not to hope that the late show also got both of the other two fan favorites, though. The organ-led melody and anthem-ready hook of “Slow Down Chicago” make it feel like it should be the city’s official song, and you should be able to request a refund if you do not hear the addictively jittery “Microphone Song”.

“Magazine (Songwriter On A Train)” served as a reminder of why you were at the show to begin with, pulling together everything the band does so well. The dance of the piano and guitar, the occasional violin flutter, the ticking beat and the great hook made for a snapshot of a band in the zone. The dusty, spaghetti-western tone of “Appreciation”, complete with horns ablaze, was followed by Priest’s well-deserved props to the sound board operator, Fabrese, who he claimed was responsible for 80% of the excellent sound. Regardless of who was responsible, it was impossible not to be impressed by the dynamic range and versatility of the band’s sound. The clever lyrical split of father/mother vocals between Priest and Lindau worked great on the upbeat, custody battle inspired, “Chosing Sides”, and they were able to hold the room’s attention just as intently for the quiet bad-timing ballad “Shortcut”.

Their urgent retelling of “Major Tom (Coming Home)” felt all their own, though the straightforward cover of Blackstreet’s “No Diggity” was hard to resist. The deep funk bass groove and the inclusion of the Dr. Dre rap to kick it off were surprising treats. The band announced a handful of summer shows, and you would be insane not to seek them out at one of them. After you do, good luck resisting the temptation to cancel all other plans any other days they are playing.

Becoming You
Mexico City
Mountains Of Molehills
I Don’t Know Where I Was Going With This
Sympathetic Vibrations
Magazine (Songwriter On A Train)
Slow Down Chicago
Choosing Sides
Major Tom (Coming Home)
Reading The Map Upside Down

Microphone Song
No Diggity

Friday, May 7, 2010

Single Of The Week - Maps & Atlases "Solid Ground"

Check out this reason not to be late for Frightened Rabbits’ tour. This new indie pop quartet is the latest find from Barsuk Records. Look for their upcoming debut, Perch Patchwork, out June 29th.

You can get the single of the week by subscribing to the podcast on iTunes or Zune, or using the feed in any podcast provider.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Kings Of Leon Announce Opening Bands For Summer

Nashville-based Kings Of Leon have announced the opening lineup for their summer trek through the US. While Built To Spill and The Stills are nice for Chicago on July 24th, it is hard not to look a little further down the list and be mouth-foamingly jealous of the cities that get The Black Keys and The Whigs as opening acts.
w/ The Whigs
6/5 Atlantic City, NJ Borgata Event Center
6/6 Saratoga, NY Saratoga Performing Arts Center
6/8 Scranton, PA Toyota Pavilion
w/ Built To Spill and The Features
7/9 San Diego, CA Cricket Wireless Amphitheatre
7/10 Phoenix, AZ Cricket Wireless Pavilion
7/12 Los Angeles, CA Hollywood Bowl
7/14 Irvine, CA Verizon Wireless Amphitheater
7/17 George, WA (Seattle) The Gorge
7/19 Salt Lake City, UT USANA Amphitheatre
7/20 Denver, CO Comfort Dental Amphitheatre
w/ The Stills
7/23 St. Louis, MO Verizon Wireless Amphitheater
w/ Built To Spill and The Stills
7/24 Chicago, IL First Midwest Bank Amphitheatre
7/26 Cleveland, OH Blossom Music Center
7/28 Toronto, ON Molson Canadian Amphitheatre - only The Stills
7/30 Darien Center, NY Darien Lake Performing Arts Center
7/31 Detroit, MI DTE Energy Music Theatre
8/3 Hartford, CT Comcast Theatre
8/5 Camden, NJ Susquehanna Bank Center
8/7 Bristow, VA (DC) Jiffy Lube Live
w/ The Black Keys and The Whigs
9/3 Indianapolis, IN Verizon Wireless Music Center
9/4 Cincinnati, OH Riverbend Music Center
9/7 Pittsburgh, PA First Niagara Pavilion
9/8 Hershey,PA Hershey Park - Pavilion
9/10 Charlotte, NC Verizon Wireless Amphitheatre
9/11 Virginia Beach, VA Virginia Beach Amphitheater
9/13 Raleigh, NC Time Warner Cable Amphitheater at Walnut Creek
9/17 West Palm Beach, FL Cruzan Amphitheatre
9/18 Tampa, FL Ford Amphitheatre
9/20 Birmingham, AL Verizon Wireless Music Center
9/22 Houston, TX Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion
9/23 Dallas, TX Center

Phantogram Extends Tour

NY electro-pop duo, Phantogram continues to ride a well-deserved wave of success, adding a handful of west coast tour dates with, UK buzz-band, The XX to their list of things to do. The June dates come after the end of their run opening for The Antlers and a stretch of May headlining dates stretching from Oregon to New York. Keep an eye on the site for any Chicago dates, but in the meantime, enjoy the Alan Wilkis Remix of "Mouthful Of Diamonds" here.

with The Antlers
4/30 Los Angeles, CA Troubadour
5/1 San Francisco, CA Independent
5/3 Portland, OR Doug Fir
5/4 Vancouver, BC The Biltmore Cabaret
5/5 Seattle, WA Neumo's
Headlining Dates
5/8 Eugene , OR University of Oregon
5/10 Salt Lake City, UT Kilby Court
5/12 Aspen, CO Belly Up *
5/13 Denver, CO Larimer Lounge *
5/14 Kansas City, MO Riot Room *
5/15 Bloomington, IN The Bishop *
5/17 Cleveland, OH Grog Shop *
5/18 Hoboken, NJ Maxwell's *
5/19 New York, NY Bowery Ballroom *
5/20 Lewiston, ME WRBC Bates College *
5/21 Providence, RI Jerkey's *
5/22 Clifton Park, NY Northern Lights *
5/31 George, WA Sasquatch Festival
* w/ Light Pollution
with The XX
6/1 San Francisco, CA Great American Music Hall
6/2 San Francisco, CA Great American Music Hall
6/3 Big Sur, CA Henry Miller Library
6/5 Los Angeles, CA Henry Fonda Theater
6/6 Los Angeles, CA Wiltern
6/8 San Diego, CA House of Blues

Menomena And Lil Wayne Meet In Ramona Falls' "Russia"

We have been fans of, Brent Knopf's (Menomena) dreamy side project, Ramona Falls since last year's gorgeous debut first graced our ears. Seeing them last summer in Chicago almost led us to wish for a new Ramona Falls before a new Menomena. While there are a handful of new west coast tour dates announced for the band (below), we figured we had heard the last of the project until possibly next year. Then, an email trumpeting a "Russia" remix by Chicago-based The Hood Internet showed up. The strangely effective track features a guest appearance by rapper Lil Wayne. Give it a listen here, and keep an eye on our site for any Menomena or Ramona Falls tour announcements.

May 15th Portland, OR [Mississippi Studio]
May 16th Seattle, WA [The Crocodile]
May 19th Santa Cruz [Crepe Place]
May 21st Los Angeles, CA [The Wiltern w/ The National]
May 22nd Los Angeles, CA [The Wiltern w/ The National]
May 23rd San Diego, CA [Spreckles Theatre w/ The National]
May 26th Oakland, CA [Fox Theatre w/ The National]
May 27th Oakland, CA [Fox Theatre w/ The National]
May 28th Eugene, OR [Sam Bonds Garage]

Watch Owl City Live Sunday, May 9th

With it growing ever more difficult to get tickets to see, indie pop sensation, Owl City, the Adam Young-led band is letting you catch the experience from the comfort of your computer this weekend. The band's sold-out show this Sunday at London's O2 Shepherd's Bush Empire is being broadcast around the world through a live stream on and The band is even taking time-zones into account, offering a re-broadcast several hours later. Check the band's site for times and details on the uber-cool offer.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Kate Nash - May 3, 2010

UK-based singer-songwriter, Kate Nash might be lacking a bit of confidence on her recently released sophomore album, My Best Friend Is You, but she had no such issues on stage at Lincoln Hall on Monday night. Joined on stage by a four piece band to flush out the sounds, she jumped right in to the new material with the soaring "Paris" and commanding the crowd to dance before launching into, lead singe, "Do Wah Doo". The poppy, energetic start to the evening created a party-like atmosphere, with jealousy-fuelled old-school rocker set the crowd in motion a bit.

Nash sat at the keyboard, gleefully playing over the thumping beat of fan favorite "Mouthwash" before standing up to limp to the left side of the stage to strap on a guitar for "Kiss That Grrl". Nash proved an engaging, charismatic performer, talking frequently with the crowd between songs; somehow coming off equal parts charming and edgy. She responded to a fan inquiry as to the reason for her injured leg that she injured herself wrestling her grandma. The back and forth between the witty Nash and her fans was as much a highlight as anything that got played, with the most entertaining moment of the night coming courtesy of an intrepid young fan. Nash's sassy vocals, including her frantic spoken word conclusion to "Don't You Want To Share The Guilt", and the harder edge the band gave everything, most notably the explosively ragged "Take Me To A Higher Plane", was just as pleasant a surprise her personality.

She asked for quiet before "I Hate Seagulls", telling the already well-behaved fans, "don't do anything stupid", before explaining that a fan in New York called her a c*nt and yelled for her to stop playing, before showing up at a signing afterwards professing how much he loves her. Before the bliss of "Foundations", with most of the crowd singing along, Nash offered $20 to any fan that crowd-surfed from the back of the venue to the front, so she could high-five them, and then surf back. Midway through, new album standout, rat-a-tat love song "Later On", a fan, barely old enough to get in the eighteen and older show, made his way over fans' outstretched hands to the stage, to the delight of Nash. Not missing a beat on the keys, Nash invited him on-stage to dance (albeit awkwardly) behind her until the song's conclusion.

The song ended with the fan getting his high-five, but Nash surprised him by allowing him to sit at the keyboard and watch "Mansion Song" as she moved again to the side mic. Nash asked for the lights to be darkened for the song, potentially to mask the young fan's blushing face, as she launched into an f-bomb laced diatribe directed at female groupies looking for rockstar loving. The furious prog-pop tune worked great live because of how effectively Nash sold it, leading into the similarly post-punk leanings of "I Just Love You More". The two songs left you wondering what an all-out punk album would sound like from the British pop star. She called for the fan to return to the stage for the closing punk thrasher, "Model Behaviour".

The only disappointment in the set was the absence of "Pumpkin Soup" and the lack of an encore. The set ended with Nash hopping off-stage, using her 'hero' as human crutch. The house lights popped on to the sold-out crowd's amazement, leading to lots of groaning, confusion, shouting to coax her back out, and some 'encore' chants. The stage manager eventually came out to distribute the set lists to the fans, and indicating that she would be doing a meet-and-greet with fans at the merch booth. It is hard to feel short-changed after an hour and ten minute set where the artist hangs out afterwards to meet you. Kate Nash might write lovely pop tunes on album, but live she is all rockstar.

Do Wah Doo
Kiss That Grrrl
Take Me To A Higher Plane
Don't You Want To Share The Guilt
I Hate Seagulls
I've Got A Secret
Later On
Mansion Song
I Just Love You More
Model Behaviour

Monday, May 3, 2010

Upcoming Shows - Week ending May 9th

Monday, May 3rd - Lincoln Hall – 7pm – SOLD OUT
Headliner: Kate Nash
Opener: Supercute

UK-based singer-songwriter is touring in support of her recently released sophomore album, My Best Friend Is You. While it is not as instantly striking as her debut, there is plenty here to warrant the sold out crowd and keep her near the top of the list of UK pop stars worth your attention.

Thursday, May 6th – Park West – 7:30pm - $16
Headliner: Kaki King
Openers: An Horse

It is a pleasant surprise to find tickets still available to see this incredible, unique guitarist in action. Do yourself a favor and get in now, before more people notice.

Saturday, May 8th – Metro - 9pm – SOLD OUT
Headliner: Frightened Rabbit
Openers: Maps & Atlases, Our Brother The Native
This show has been sold out for a month now, with good reason. Consider this your warning to pay attention next time we tell you Scotland's indie darlings come through. Their recently released third album, Winter Of Mixed Drinks, is a fantastic album that has the unfortunate duty of following their modern classic, Midnight Organ Fight. Be sure to catch them at Lollapalooza this year if you are one of the unlucky shut out of this one.

Saturday, May 8th – Schubas – 7pm and 10:30pm - $14
Headliner: Canasta
Openers: Gregory And The Hawk (early), Brighton, MA (late)

Chicago's own orchestral pop geniuses, Canasta are finally ready to release their sophomore album, The Fakeout, The Tease And The Breather, on May 18th. These pair of album-release shows is your chance to both hear the new songs live and get your hands on the new album ten days before the rest of the world finds out how damn great it is; since the ticket price includes a copy of the new album. Head over to their site and check out the new songs, fully streaming, and get yourselves a ticket.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Podcast 14 - Play It, Don't Spray It

After a week away, the guys discuss upcoming shows from Canasta, Kate Nash, Frightened Rabbit, and review recent shows from Phantogram and The Whigs.

You can get to the podcast by subscribing to it through iTunes or Zune, or using the feed in any other podcast provider. Or, you can simply listen with the widget on the right of the page.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Single Of The Week - Charlie Faye and Calexico "Broken Heart Maker"

Our second single of the week this week is from, Austin-based singer-songwriter, Charlie Faye. Faye is currently touring around the country as part of her 'Travels With Charley' experiment, taking up residency in a different city for a month at a time. This track, with Calexico, is from her time spent in Tucson earlier this year. If the rest sound this good, the end result should be fantastic.

You can get to the Single Of The Week by subscribing to our podcast in iTunes or Zune, or using our podcast feed in any other podcast program.

Indie Music Watch

Want to know what we think of the latest from John Butler Trio, Kate Nash, The Mynabird, fun., The Bird & The Bee, and Cloud Cult? Well then click here.

Spoiler alert - we like them.

Ours' Jimmy Gnecco To Release Solo Debut, Tour Dates

Ours frontman, Jimmy Gnecco is set to release his solo debut, The Heart, on July 20th on Bright Antenna Records. Gnecco is prepping for the release with a string of May and June tour dates with California singer-songwriter Greg Laswell. You can get a listen yourself at Empty Bottle on May 15th.

The Heart Track List:
Rest Your Soul
Light on the Grave
The Heart
Bring You Home
These Are My Hands
I Heard Your Singing
Take a Chance
Patiently Waiting
It’s Only Love
Talk to Me

6 Portland, OR - Mississippi Studios
7 Eugene, OR - WOW Hall
8 Seattle, WA - The Tractor
11 Denver, CO - Walnut Room
12 McPherson, KS - McPherson Opera House
14 Minneapolis, MN - 7th Street Entry
15 Chicago, IL - Empty Bottle
17 Toronto, ONT - The Legendary Horseshoe Tavern
19 Ann Arbor, MI - Blind Pig
20 Cleveland, OH - Cambridge Room at House of Blues
21 Columbus, OH - Rumba Café
22 Philadelphia, PA - Tin Angel
24 Washington, DC - The Rock and Roll Hotel
25 New York, NY - Bowery Ballroom
26 Philadelphia, PA - Tin Angel
27 Boston, MA- Paradise Rock Club
30 Charlotte, NC - The Evening Muse
1 Atlanta, GA - Vinyl
2 Birmingham, AL - Work Play Theatre
4 Dallas, TX - The Prophet Bar
5 Austin, TX - Stubb’s Bar-B-Q (Indoors)
8 Phoenix, AZ - Rhythm Room
9 San Diego, CA - Anthology
10 San Francisco, CA - Cafe Du Nord

Brandi Carlile Announces Summer Tour - No Chicago Dates

One of the most amazing voices in music, Brandi Carlile has announced her summer tour dates in support of last fall's Give Up The Ghost. Sadly, there is no Chicago to be found, but there are two tempting Indianapolis dates listed below. We thought about skipping this story, but then we would not have the chance to whine about how much it sucks.

June 3 Atlantic City, NJ House of Blues
June 4 Charlottesville, VA Jefferson Theatre
June 5 Norfolk, VA The Norva
June 6 Richmond, VA The National
June 8 Jacksonville, FL Florida Theatre
June 9 Charleston, SC Music Farm
June 11 Greenville, SC The Handlebar
June 12 Manchester, TN Bonnaroo Festival
June 13 Memphis, TN Minglewood Hall
June 15 Lexington, KY Kentucky Theatre
June 16 Nashville, TN Music City Roots at Loveless Barn
June 20 Telluride, CO Telluride Bluegrass Festival
June 21 Boise, ID Botanical Garden (Co-Headline with Jewel)
June 24 Petaluma, CA Mystic Theatre
June 25 Petaluma, CA Mystic Theatre
June 26 Saratoga, CA The Mountain Winery
June 27 Jacksonville, OR Britt Pavilion
July 7 Chula Vista, CA Cricket Wireless Amphitheatre (Lilith Fair)
July 8 Phoenix, AZ Cricket Pavilion (Lilith Fair)
July 10 Irvine, CA Verizon Wireless Amphitheatre (Lilith Fair)
July 11 Salt Lake City, UT Red Butte Garden Amphitheatre
July 15 Fairbanks, AK Blue Loon
July 16 Anchorage, AK Discovery Theatre
July 23 Fishers, IN Connor Prairie (w/Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra)
July 24 Fishers, IN Connor Prairie (w/ Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra)
July 25 Kent, OH Kent Stage
July 28 Rutland, VT Paramount Theatre
July 29 Morristown, NJ Mayo Center for the Performing Arts
July 30 Hampton Beach, NH Hampton Beach Casino Ballroom
July 31 Newport, RI Newport Folk Festival
Aug 1 Westhampton Bch, NY Westhampton Beach Performing Arts Center
Aug 5 Missoula, MT Wilma Theatre
Aug 6 Sandpoint, ID The Festival at Sandpoint
Aug 12 Pelham, AL Verizon Wireless Music Center (Lilith Fair)
Aug 16 Dallas, TX Center (Lilith Fair)
Aug 21 Bayfield, WI Lake Superior Big Top Chautauqua
Aug 22 Fish Creek, WI Door Community Auditorium
Aug 24 Interlochen, MI Corson Auditorium
Aug 25 Grand Rapids, MI Meijer Gardens
Aug 29 St. Paul, MN Minnesota State Fair – Main Grandstand

The Mynabirds Hit The Road

Former Georgie James member, Laura Burhenn's new project, The Mynabirds is set to take their dusty country-fried soul on the road this summer. The new album, What We Lose In The Fire We Gain In The Flood, just hit store shelves this week (and should already be in heavy rotation on your iPod), sounding like the best classic pop album you never heard. Luckily, they will be here in Chicago for the Do Division Festival on June 6th, with a second show the next night at Empty Bottle. We are a bit jealous of those who get the pairing of The Myanbirds and Josh Ritter, though.

4/30: Des Moines, IA, Vaudeville Mews
5/1: Omaha, NE, Slowdown
5/7: Minneapolis, MN, Cedar Cultural Center
6/1: Cleveland, OH, Beachland Tavern
6/2: Washington, DC, Black Cat
6/3: Brooklyn, NY, The Bell House
6/6: Chicago, IL, Do Division Festival
6/7: Chicago, IL, Empty Bottle
6/8: Iowa City, IA, The Mill
6/11: Birmingham, AL, WorkPlay Theatre *
6/12: Baton Rouge, LA, Manship Theatre *
6/14: Austin, TX, Antone's *
6/15: Dallas, TX, Granada *
* = with Josh Ritter

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

The Whigs - April 23, 2010

The Whigs dipped into local waters for opening acts. Old Fake took the stage first, with a hard-charging sound that perfectly balanced punk and blues that made them an ideal opener for the Athens trio. The trio's sound had a lot in common with The Whigs, if you stripped away the southern influences. Keep an eye for them on upcoming shows in the area, and get there early because they are definitely worth your attention. More established Chicago act, Empires followed with a solid opening set. Their sound was a bit hard to peg, for better or worse, pulling at the corners of classic rock, alternative, adult contemporary, and even metal at times. Their intriguing blend of influences was not enough to stop from wishing Old Fake and Empires were reversed on the set.

The Athens, Georgia rockers took the stage to the Braves’ “Tomahawk Chop”, with the crowd happily joining in on the arm-swinging action. The trio took on light-hearted, keyboard-laced “Nothing Is Easy” first, giving long-time fans something to swoon over before hitting the new material hard. The set was dominated by the band’s two most recent efforts, with the easier-going material from their debut feeling a bit out of place at this point compared to the grittier sounds that followed.

The loose, jangling riffs and thumping bass line of “I Am For Real” served well as a bridge to the edgier rock that would follow. The trio jumped back to Mission Control for the hard-charging “Hot Bed”, showing off the tight sound of the trio and, front man, Parker Gispert’s energetic performance as he strutted across the stage to the beat. This is a band much larger than the stage they were playing. The set dove head-first into a handful off their fantastic third album, In The Dark, only slowing down for the clunky psychedelic clutter of “Dying”. The Tim Deaux’s rolling bass line and the frantic beat of Julian Dorio showed the band to truly be a three-man show.
Gispert’s grizzled vocals on “So Lonely” colored the song wonderfully before they busted out the album’s lead single, “Kill Me Carolyn”. The fluttering rumble of “Black Lotus” closed the pack of new material well, with wiry guitar blaring through. Gispert praised the enthusiastic crowd at the end, calling Chicago “the liveliest big city – New York and LA are a bunch of stiffies”. It felt a bit ironic, given the city’s reputation for standing motionless, but the band’s raucous rockers and no-nonsense attitude brought out the best in the crowd. The rippling beat of “Like A Vibration” led off a string of fan-favorites, leading into the stomping rhythm of “Production City” and explosive, anthem-ready “Right Hand On My Heart”.

Gispert’s move the keyboard took some air out of the set for “Half The World Away”, but the move served the band well; giving Deaux, now on guitar, and Dorio a chance to rock out a bit, and providing the calm before the storm. Shout-a-long epic, “Naked” served as the highlight of the night, where the slow-burn mystery of the verses played great against the snarling, empowering hook. The swaggering “Already Young” closed the regular set, and the band returned to the stage again to the “Tomahawk Chop” for the encore. The easy-going “Say Hello” from their debut kicked things off slowly, but the trio finished strong with southern-tinged, conscious-conflicted “Someone’s Daughter” and thrashing “Need You Need You”. Having seen them previously at Lollapalooza, we confidently say that they have never sounded better, and are a must-see band at this point. Consider yourself lucky if they are coming through your town and there are tickets still available.

Single Of The Week - Pearly Gate Music "Big Escape"

Since the flu seems have derailed the podcast for this week, we will probably double-up on Single Of The Week this week instead - and return with Podcast 14 next Monday.

First up is a ragged, lo-fi folk toe-tapper from Pearly Gate Music. Their self-titled debut, full of carefully constructed gems that seem to fall in line with the recent resurgence in timeless pop, releases May 18th on Barsuk Records.

You can get the Single Of The Week by subscribing to the podcast on iTunes or Zune, or using the feed in any podcast provider.

Portugal. The Man Announce West Coast Dates, About To Record

Alaska's Portugal. The Man has announced a handful of June tour dates with two Portland Bands, The Builders & The Butchers and Morning Teleportation, to lend support. Though there is nothing on the surface here for Chicago fans, they brought Port O'Brien and up-and-coming The Dig last time through, so their ability to pick solid openers should at least send you seeking music from the bands. More dates are set to follow, so keep an eye here for any Chicago date annoucements from this must-see band.

The better news is that the prolific band is already wrapping up writing sessions for the follow-up to this year's American Ghetto, and will be heading into the studio in a few weeks. If you are lucky enough to be in southern Cali, there is a special free acoustic performance from the band this Saturday in support of an art exhibit featuring work from the band's own John Gourley and Austin Sellers. If you are lucky enough to own the acoustic edition of Satanic Satanist, you already know how great this should be.

May 1st Los Angeles - free acoustic performance and art show at Space 15
June 17th Sacremento
June 18th San Francisco
June 19th Anaheim
June 20th Tucson
June 23rd Salt Lake City
June 25th Seattle
June 26th Portland

Findlay Brown Tours With Shelby Lynne, Adds Solo Dates

UK soul singer, Findlay Brown has kicked off his Spring tour dates in support of Shelby Lynne. On the heels of his recently released Love Will Find You, sounding as if pulled out of a time capsule from the late sixties, Brown has announced a couple of solo dates at the end of the tour. If he wants to tour here beyond that, we think The Mynabirds would be an excellent fit for tourmates.
Those hoping to catch him here in Chicago will want to note the new venue - since the show was originally slated to hit Lincoln Hall, and has since moved to Martyrs. Sadly, the show will not feature the opening set from, former Project Rockstar contestant, Ryan Star, as it was originally set up at Lincoln Hall.

4/27 @ The Triple Door, Seattle, WA
4/29 @ Myrna Loy Center, Helena, MT
5/1 @ Dakota, Minneapolis, MN
5/2 @ Turner Hall, Milwaukee, WI
5/3 @ The Ark, Ann Arbor, MI
5/4 @ Martyrs’, Chicago, IL
5/5 @ Beechland Tavern, Cleveland, OH
5/7 @ Iron Horse Music Hall, Northampton, MA
5/8 @ Johnny D’s, Somerville, MA
5/9 @ World Café Live, Philadelphia, PA
5/10 @ The Concert Hall, New York, NY
5/11 @ The Birchmere, Alexandria, VA
5/13 @ The Belcourt Theater, Nashville, TN
5/14 @ WorkPlay Theater, Birmingham, AL
5/15 @ Variety Playhouse, Atlanta, GA
5/17 @ Granada Theater, Dallas, TX
5/18 @ Warehouse Live, Houston, TX
5/19 @ St. David’s Episcopal Church, Austin, TX
5/23 @ McCabe’s Guitar Shop, Santa Monica, CA*
5/25 @ Belly Up Tavern, Solana Beach, CA*
*Findlay Solo Dates

Friday, April 23, 2010

Phantogram - April 22, 2010

here is a reason we like to see a band twice before we like to crown them must-see. In the case of, electro-pop duo, Phantogram, seeing them a second time is essential to find out just how fresh the experience is each time out. With a video-screen display to give the set a more dynamic visual appearance, and a duo made up of a dj and a guitarist, you wonder just how unique the set can really be from one to the next. As the New York duo demonstrated Thursday night at Lincoln Hall, they keep things plenty fresh each outing.

The duo were an energetic, engaging success at Schubas a few months back, but they seem to have evolved even further as a live act since then. A larger screen and new videos to accompany the songs were fantastic, but the biggest changes were in regards to the sound. The duo, Sarah Barthel and Josh Carter, incorporated looping vocals into the songs, allowing them to remix their songs on the fly. It gave the mysterious thump and flickering guitar of "Running From The Cops" a more playful twist. Between the aquatic imagery and thick on-stage fog, the tranquil, Roxy Music-esque "You Are The Ocean" was a definite highlight of the set, showcasing both Carter's unique charm as a vocalist and the duo's great harmonies as Barthel twisted and danced to the beat.

Barthel sang "This Is The Future", heavy on her looping, sampled vocals, over a twitchy beat and thick bass line. The new track feels like it could use a little work, especially to iron out the cluttered prog-rock feeling moments that feel out of place. Barthel seemed a little more involved in the vocals of the bass-heavy "Turn It Off", making it feel more like a duet than the Carter-led version on the album. The set ended with the hauntingly sexy "When I'm Small", with Barthel belting out vocals with a brasher, more passionate edge that displayed just how great her voice is, and left you wishing she used that side of her voice a little more often. They actually got a decent amount of the sold-out crowd dancing for the club-ready jam; a massive accomplishment in Chicago. Phantogram's willingness to tinker with their already infectious songs makes them a band not to miss.

The party unfortunately stopped when The Antlers hit the stage. The Brooklyn-based trio opened with the slow burning falsetto of "Kettering". It showed off the pipes of front-man Peter Silberman, and the gradual climb to the song's eventual fiery explosion was great. The dramatically sparse verses and overwhelming, epic flush of sound of the chorus on "Sylvia" again showed off Silberman's fantastic vocal range. If it were only the near theatrical vocals or their knack for stretching out the last moments of a song for several minutes each, they may have been more effective. Instead, it made everything feel heavy and overly self-important; which is quite the opposite of the feeling you get from them on album. The intense drama of every song made The Antlers a bit of an exhausting downer following on the heels of the energetic duo that opened. In the end, it felt like the sets should have been flipped. Half an hour of the somber, dramatic rock from The Antlers is plenty, but you can always go for more Phantogram.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Single Of The Week - The Mynabirds "Numbers Don't Lie"

Full of smoky, jazz-laced pop that sounds as if just unearthed from a fifty year-old time capsule, The Mynabirds' debut, What We Lose In The Fire We Gain In The Flood, is one of the best debut albums we have come across this year. Full of sultry, cooing vocals and classic soul-dripping pop songs, it is the kind of album you just leave on from start to finish and back again. Enjoy this early listen to "Numbers Don't Lie", and be sure to pick up the album when it hits store shelves next Tuesday, April 27th.

You can get to the Single Of The Week by subscribing to our podcast feed in iTunes or Zune, or by using our feed in any podcast provider.

We Are Wolves At Subterranean Thursday, April 22nd

Like Antti Niemi, sometimes we let a quality chance slip by us. In all the Blackhawk playoff and Chicago baseball excitement, we failed to notice that, Montreal-based electro-punk trio, We Are Wolves are headlining at Subterranean tomorrow night. Their unique, heart-pounding rock is definitely worthy of your attention, so we beg your forgiveness. For the record, we still think we are doing better than Niemi at this point.

Thursday, April 22nd - Subterranean - 9pm - $12
Headliner: We Are Wolves
Openers: El Ten Eleven, Parlovr

Canasta's Latest Streaming In Full

Chicago's orchestral pop geniuses, Canasta are nearly ready to finally release their sophomore album, The Fakeout, The Tease And The Breather. The album, releasing May 18th, is the first on new label RWIM Chicago. To celebrate, the band has announced two album-release shows at Schubas on May 8th - where your $14 nets you entrance and a copy of the new album.

The band also has the album streaming in its entirety on their site, and a quick trip to their Audio page can get you downloads of three of the album's best - the infectious "Mexico City", the haunting "I Don't Know Where I Was Going With This", and the soulful "Reading The Map Upside Down". We could sit here all day and gush over what a fantastic success their sophomore effort is, but we are sure you would rather just be listening to it yourself, or buying tickets to the Schubas shows, or both.

Saturday, May 8th - Schubas - 7pm w/ Gregory And The Hawk opening (18+)
Saturday, May 8th - Schubas - 10:30pm w/ Brighton, MA opening (21+)

Sia's New Album Out June 22

Australian singer-songwriter extordinare, Sia is set to release her latest album, We Are Born, on June 22nd. The first single, "Clap Your Hands" is not even out for another month (May 25th), but you can get an early listen to six tracks off the new album at her site. There are a handful of US tour dates in the near future, including one in Chicago on Sunday night at The Vic.

Track Listing
1. The Fight
2. Clap Your Hands
3. Stop Trying
4. You’ve Changed
5. Be Good To Me
6. Bring Night
7. Hurting Me Now
8. Never Gonna Leave Me
9. Cloud
10. I’m In Here
11. The Co-Dependent
12. Big Girl, Little Girl
13. Oh Father

US Tour Dates
04/19: San Diego, CA @ House of Blues
04/20: Phoenix, AZ @ The Marquee
04/22: Denver, CO @ Gothic Theatre
04/24: Minneapolis, MN @ Fine Line
04/25: Chicago, IL @ Vic Theatre
04/26: Detroit, MI @ St. Andrews
04/28: Toronto, ON @ Phoenix
04/30: Montreal, QC @ Club Soda
05/01: Boston, MA @ House of Blues
05/02: Philadelphia, PA @ TLA
05/04: Washington, DC @ 9:30 Club
05/06: New York, NY @ Terminal 5
05/08: Annapolis, MD @ Rams Head

Mates Of State Announce Crushes Tour

On the heels of the album announcement, Mates Of State have announced The Summer Crushes Tour. In addition to their unique take on a covers album, the duo are bringing a refreshingly different set of opening acts on tour with them. The duo's own Jason Hammel will serve as the tour's resident DJ, and the openers will include party-rock band Free Energy and a couple of stand-up comedians. In Chicago, we get the aforementioned Free Energy and stand-up comedian Todd Barry on June 22nd at Lincoln Hall. See the full listing below:

6/15 Northampton, MA @ Iron Horse * #
6/16 Rochester, NY @ Water Street * #
6/17 Philadelphia, PA @ First Unitarian Church % #
6/18 Pittsburgh, PA @ Mr. Small's * #
6/19 Cleveland, OH @ Grog Shop * #
6/21 Cincinnati, OH @ 20th Century * #
6/22 Chicago, IL @ Lincoln Hall * #
6/23 Minneapolis, MN @ 400 Bar *
6/24 Minneapolis, MN @ 400 Bar *
6/25 Omaha, NE @ Slowdown *
6/26 Denver, CO @ Bluebird *
6/28 Salt Lake City, UT @ In the Venue *
6/30 San Francisco, CA @ Great American Music Hall * ^
7/1 San Francisco, CA @ Great American Music Hall * ^
7/2 Los Angeles, CA @ The Echo * ^
7/3 Los Angeles, CA @ The Echo * ^
7/4 Tucson, AZ @ Club Congress *
7/6 Lubbock, TX @ Jake's *
7/7 Dallas, TX @ Granada Theatre *
7/8 Houston, TX @ Warehouse Live *
7/9 Baton Rouge @ Spanish Moon *
7/10 Birmingham @ Workplay *
7/12 Athens, GA @ 40 Watt * ^
7/13 Asheville, NC @ Orange Peel * ^
7/14 Baltimore, MD @ Ottobar * ^
7/15 Brooklyn, NY @ Music Hall ^
7/16 New York, NY @ Bowery Ballroom ^
* w/ Free Energy
# w/ Todd Barry
^ w/ Nick Thune
% w/ Suckers

Stream Minus The Bear's New Album Now

Those who cannot wait to hear Minus The Bear's Dangerbird Records debut, OMNI, can stream the album now at KCRW's site. Anyone holding off on the temptation can always head over to the band's site to pre-order the album (due out May 4th) and give a listen to "OMNI Says The Game".

There are a boatload of tour dates for the band, but you will have to wait till Lollapalooza to catch them in Chicago.

19 Spokane, WA - Knitting Factory
20 Billings, MT - The Rainyard
22 Omaha, NE - Slowdown
23 Bonner Springs, KS - Sandstone Amphitheatre
25 Detroit, MI - St. Andrew's Hall
26 Columbus, OH - Newport Music Hall
28 Covington, KY - Madison Theater
29 Buffalo, NY - Town Ballroom
30 Hartford, CT - Webster Theater
2 East Rutherford, NJ - Bamboozle Festival
5 Boston, MA - Wilbur Theater
6 Philadelphia, PA - Trocadero
7 Washington, DC - 9:30 Club
8 Richmond, VA - The National
9 Charlotte, NC - The Fillmore
10 Atlanta, GA - Variety Playhouse
11 Ft. Lauderdale, FL - Revolution
12 Tampa, FL - The Ritz
14 Houston, TX - House of Blues
15 Dallas, TX - Granada
16 Austin, TX - La Zona Rosa
18 Albuquerque, MN - Sunshine Theatre
19 Las Vegas, NV - House of Blues
20 Los Angeles, CA - Mayan Theatre
21 Pomona, CA - Glass House
22 San Diego, CA - SOMA
23 Tempe, AZ - Marquee Theater
26 San Francisco, CA - Regency Ballroom
27 Reno, NV - Knitting Factory
28 Portland, OR - Roseland Theatre
29 George, WA - Sasquatch Music Festival

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Rogue Wave - Saturday, April 17th

Things have not been easy for Oakland's Rogue Wave over the last couple of years, but you would not have known it from their energetic performance at the first of two sold-out shows at, new Chicago hot-spot, Lincoln Hall. Zach Rogue may have spent a good portion of last year paralyzed and in pain from to slipped discs, but the brighter outlook found on the latest album came through just as well live.

The band dove into the set with half-a-dozen tracks off their latest release, Permalight. Opener, "Stars And Stripes" felt like it was all vocals and beat, with the two guitars barely audible. Things got a little better with the thumping rhythm and flickering disco ball of the danceable "Good Morning", but the energetic, synth-fuelled party track was still largely lacking guitar to balance out the sound. A quick switch of guitars on "Per Anger" for Rogue helped add a little oomph missing from the first couple of songs. It helped that Rogue's voice began to warm up some, to reveal the same compelling frayed tenor found on the albums.

The acoustic-based "Sleepwalker" and "Solitary Gun" served as definite highlights out of the batch of new material, but even they seemed to lack the same spark found on the album versions. It was clear at the show just how much care went into fine tuning the songs in the studio, which failed to translate in a live setting. The crowd roared enthusiastically when Rogue asked if they wanted to hear some older material, and a few moments into fan-favorite "Publish My Love" revealed why. The older material has a much heavier, more guitar-driven thrust to them. It would serve the new songs well if the band roughed them up a bit live, similar to the more aggressive turn they gave "Permalight" at the end of the encore.

Without exception, the older material trumped the new songs on-stage; despite how great the new material plays on album. Nothing off Permalight came close to matching the feel-good rock-stomp of "Harmonium" or the drum-happy euphoria of "Lake Michigan". It felt a bit like the band has a little work to do with the new material live, but the songs, and the band, are certainly good enough for them to tweak them into crowd-pleasers quickly.

Stars And Stripes
Good Morning
Per Anger
Solitary Gun
I'll Never Leave You
Publish My Love
Every Moment
Bird On A Wire
Lake Michigan

Kicking The Heart Out

Upcoming Shows - Week ending April 25th

Thursday, April 22nd - Lincoln Hall - 9pm - $13
Headliner: The Antlers
Opener: Phantogram

We begged you to catch, electro-pop duo, Phantogram when they played Schubas a few months ago, warning you that it would be a rare chance to catch the rising stars at a smallish venue. Now they are at the larger Lincoln Hall opening for, fellow buzz-band, The Antlers. It will not be long before venues this size will be a memory for them too.

Thursday, April 22nd - Congress Theater - 7pm - $25
Headliner: Passion Pit
Openers: Mayer Hawthorne & The Country

Having sold out Congress Theater earlier this month, Passion Pit return for what should be another sold out performance. Get your tickets while you can, as word of just how great their dance-happy, synth-fuelled rock is spreads.

Friday, April 23rd - Bottom Lounge - 8pm - $15
Headliner: The Whigs
Openers: Empires, Old Fake

You have a choice tonight, but one listen to the latest album from, Athens-based grunge rockers, The Whigs and the decision becomes clear. Blending blues and classic rock with their affinity for nineties grunge this time around works wonders for their already great sound. Get an early listen to a band you should not miss at Lollapalooza this year.

Friday, April 23rd - Park West - 8pm - $27
Headliner: Martin Sexton

Singer-songwriter Martin Sexton provides a great back-up plan for those who will get shut out of the sure-to-sell-out Whigs show. His amazing vocal range, heartfelt songwriting, and music that blends soul, blues, and roots rock is sure to please.

Sunday, April 25th - The Vic - 7pm - $21.50
Headliner: Sia

Sunday is a tough decision, sure to spread concert-loving Chicagoans across a few venues. There is no wrong choice here, and Australia's Sia certainly is a very good one. Her sound is pop, but is as unique, varied, and refreshing as her collaborations – which recently have included appearances on The Flight Of The Conchords' sophomore album, writing songs for Christina Aguilera's upcoming album, and laid down guest vocals on the David Byrne and Fatboy Slim album.

Sunday, April 25th - Lincoln Hall - 9pm - $14
Headliner: The Album Leaf
Opener: Sea Wolf

We do not normally recommend heading out to shows to see an opening act, but Sea Wolf is not normally an opening act. We love the gypsy-flavored acoustic rock of Sea Wolf more than we can possibly explain here. There is nothing quite like them in music today, and Alex Church Brown's knack for storytelling in the lyrics is just as gorgeous as the music. On album, Sea Wolf are a tranquil beauty. Live, they are an indie rock party. If you have never seen them live, you need to be at Lincoln Hall on Sunday night.
Sunday, April 25th - Metro - 9pm - $13
Headliner: White Rabbits
Openers: Here We Go Magic, Pet Lions

All you really need to know about White Rabbits can be seen in the clip of them playing "Percussion Gun" on Letterman last year. Soulful vocals, two drummers, and a ragged, heart-pounding indie rock sound make them a must-see band. Add in Chicago's own up-and-coming indie pop sensations Pet Lions, and we are not quite sure how there can possibly still be tickets available.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Podcast 13 - Is This Thing On?

This week, we discuss the recent Rogue Wave show at Lincoln Hall, drool over upcoming albums from AM Taxi, The Mynabirds, and The Dig. We also recommend a handful of great upcoming shows - including The Whigs this

You can get the podcast by subscribing by iTunes or Zune, or by using the podcast feed in any podcast provider, or just listen to it using the streaming widget on the right side of the page.
**Small programming note - Tonight's Bad Lieutenant show has been canceled due to the volcanic ash cloud travel restrictions.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Upcoming Shows - Week ending April 18th

Thursday, April 15th – Lincoln Hall – 9pm - $14
Headliner: Cloud Cult
Opener: Roma di Luna
We have ourselves an early copy of Cloud Cult's upcoming EP, Running With The Wolves. Every so often you run across a show you know you will regret missing for years to come. This is that kind of show. The EP is comprised of only one track from their upcoming new album, but just that little taste is so amazingly rich and euphoric that it makes this chance to catch a bigger glimpse into the new album a must-see show.

Thursday, April 15th – Schubas – 9pm - $15
Headliner: Adam Green
Opener: The Dead Trees

We saw this tour as the opening act to The Cribs a few months back, and were amazed at the excellence of The Dead Trees and the strangely compelling nature of Adam Green. The punk-lounge singer-songwriter is not everyone's cup-of-tea, but it is hard to take your eyes off his unique, clever act.

Saturday, April 17th – Lincoln Hall – 7pm and 10:30pm - $15/SOLD OUT
Headliner: Rogue Wave
Opener: Man/Miracle (early), JBM (late)

With a Lollapalooza announcement and a great new release, Permalight, on their side, it is no surprise that one of two of Rogue Wave's shows on Saturday night has sold-out. The surprise is that the other one has not… yet. Get your tickets now, because their grungy acoustic pop tunes are an excellent fit for Lincoln Hall.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Podcast 12 - Gutter

This week the guys examine the Lollapalooza lineup, review As Tall As Lions w/ Bad Veins and Kinch. They also recommend some excellent upcoming shows, including Adam Green, Rogue Wave, and Bad Lieutenant just this week.

You can grab our podcast by subscribing in iTunes or Zune, or using our feed in any podcast provider.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Menomena Plant 'Mines' July 27th

Site favorite, Barsuk Records announced a July 27th release date for Menomena's latest album, Mines. The album follows 2007's excellent Friend And Foe from the band, and a 2008 release from, bassist, Danny Seim's side project Lackthereof and last year's gem from, guitarist, Brent Knopf-led Ramona Falls. Without a track listing, all we really know is that it will be equal parts strange and awesome. Stay tuned for more news as we get it, hopefully including some tour dates.

Mates Of State To Reveal Their 'Crushes' This Summer

Husband and wife electronic duo, Mates Of State have announced plans to release Crushes this summer. The album marks the first time the pair has recorded and produced an album themselves. Though the album is a covers album, the band's intention was to "play that song as if we had written it". We would expect nothing less from the inventive, unique duo, who put together a refreshingly varied list of songs for the album.

The full track-listing is below, and the album is set for a mysterious 'Summer 2010' release, but you can get an early listen (and download) of their take on Girls' "Laura" at their site. We will keep you posted on any tour announcements.

1. Laura (Girls)
2. Son et Lumiere (The Mars Volta)
3. Sleep the Clock Around (Belle & Sebastian)
4. Technicolor Girls (Death Cab for Cutie)
5. Long Way Home (Tom Waits)
6. Love Letter (Nick Cave)
7. Second Hand News (Fleetwood Mac)
8. 17 Pink Sugar Elephants (Vashti Bunyan)
9. Roller Coaster Ride (Dear Nora)
10. True Love Will Find You in the End (Daniel Johnston)

6th Shred For Your Life Set To Melt Faces On April 17th

The sixth-annual Shred For Your Life guitar competition is set to take place at Webster Hall on Saturday, April 17th. Webster Hall marks the biggest venue for the competition, which has steadily increased its size each year. The competition pits guitarists, ranging in age from 13 - 54, against each other in the hopes of impressing the judges for a trophy including a three-foot guitar pick by artist Neck Face and a guitar crown. The judges this year include Andrew W.K., Jaleel Bunton (TV On The Radio), and actor/writer Justin Theroux.

Previous winners include, first-year champ, Chris Maxwell (Skeleton Key/Elegant Too), Alex Nemiz (Mod Rocket), who was the first female and teenage winner, and Blake Mills, who went on to work with Band Of Horses, Julian Casablancas, and Jacob Dylan.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Single Of The Week - The Morning Pages "Telephone"

Brooklyn might not scream 'roots-rock', but then again, Lady GaGa's dace-pop hit "Telephone" doesn't exactly seem ripe for a country-fried retelling. Yet, that is exactly what this up-and-coming band does with it, and damn if it is not infectious. Keep an eye out for their debut, Rising Rain, in May.

You can get the single of the week by subscribing to our podcast, either in iTunes, Zune, or in any other podcast provider by using the feed.