L.A.’s Abe Vigoda sounds like a completely different band on its latest album, Crush, released this week.
The band ditched the tropical punk sound of Skeleton altogether in favor of a more new wave vibe. Check out a sample below.
The Super Tuesday of new album releases may have been two weeks ago but today’s smaller group of offerings are better.
New albums by Deerhunter, No Age and Neil Young are destined for year-end lists. Le Noise is a blast from Young playing alone with a tricked-out guitar. No Age gives us its most accessible album yet with Everything In Between and Deerhunter makes another fascinating record, Halcyon Digest.
Here are a pair of new videos making the rounds. I tweeted both earlier. Feel free to vote for your favorite in the comments section.
Both albums by Mt. St. Helens Vietnam Band were savaged in Pitchfork reviews. Listening to Where the Messengers Meet, the latest release from this Seattle band, I can’t say that the latest review (and a lowly 3.3 rating) is deserved. Sure, it’s an overwrought sound in stretches and the album overall is uneven but there are high points, including the songs At Night, Messengers and Hurrah. The band, which may appeal to fans of Grizzly Bear or Dirty Projectors, plays the Empty Bottle tonight.
Check out Thee Oh Sees at Lincoln Hall tonight.
Today is being called the Super Tuesday of new music because of the abundance of album releases. On my radar: Black Mountain, Superchunk, Walkmen, Vaselines, Mavis Staples and Grinderman.
Back in the day, Pavement didn’t always put on the most stunning shows. I know this because I saw Pavement back in the day … in a gym. These days, Pavement is playing to big, enthusiastic crowds. And the band sounds great. The Pitchfork performance was stellar.
So, we get another look tonight and tomorrow. Pavement plays a show at Millennium Park tonight and at the intimate Pabst Theater in Milwaukee tomorrow. Can it get any better? Sure it can. No Age opens both shows.
The very cool San Francisco psychedelic band Wooden Shjips plays the Empty Bottle tonight, opening for High Places. Wooden Shjips songs feature a repetitive drone that’s often compared to the Velvet Underground or the Krautrock band Can. The show is part of the Adventures in Modern Music festival.
A subset of metal, stoner rock traces its roots to Black Sabbath. Sleep made two albums in the early ’90s before signing with London Records, which turned out to be the beginning of the end for the band. As the legend goes, Sleep produced a more than one-hour-long song called Dopesmoker. The record company refused to release the album, so the band trimmed the song to 52 minutes and renamed it Jerusalem. London refused to release the shorter album and the band split. Both Jerusalem (which was broken into parts) and Dopesmoker were released later.
Krautrock is a term thrown about for decades to describe the experimental and electronic sounds coming out of Germany in the late ’60s and early ’70s. Though the bands differ in approach, Can, Faust, Kraftwerk and Neu! (formed by two members of Kraftwerk) are probably the best-known names of the disparate genre.
Neu! had an influence on some of my favorite bands, such as Joy Division, Sonic Youth, Yo La Tengo and Wilco (compare Wilco’s Spiders (Kidsmoke) to Hallogallo by Neu!). Neu! drummer Klaus Dinger died two years ago but guitarist Michael Rother is reviving the band’s music with the help of Sonic Youth drummer Steve Shelley and guitarist Aaron Mullan of Tall Firs. The three play Lincoln Hall tonight as Michael Rother and Friends.
Interpol is back with indie label Matador and the band’s fourth album, Interpol, is out Tuesday. There are a couple of additions to the band (added this summer for the tour). Slint’s Dave Pajo replaces bass player Carlos Dengler, who quit. Brandon Curtis of the Secret Machines plays keyboards.
In case you missed it, here’s the video for the Drums’ ballad Down By the Water.
Jeff the Brotherhood headlines a show at Empty Bottle Thursday, the second time in the last three months. To quote someone who commented on this blog recently, these two guys from Nashville rock supahard.