Wednesday, April 28, 2010

notes part 2

a couple of missed notes:

-The Dear Hunter are apparently going to be RECORDING 9 eps, which are presumably some if not all of the "Colors" eps project this Summer.

When they are released? perhaps all at once, but I guess I would go for them releasing them gradually. Like one every 2 or 3 months, or maybe even 1 a month leading up to Act IV's release sometime I would guess in 2011.

and apparently The Dear Hunter are unsigned now? I thought they were on Triplecrown, but I may have misread something over on the Mars Volta forum (please don't link or misquote me on that).

-Lehto & Wright's album "Children's Songs" finally has shown up on some sites and I spotted the other day on the shelf at Cheapo. So finally, 3+ months later, I can put up some more kind of proper review with the artwork. Although the site I found artwork, cdbaby, it didn't look like it used the frontcover. But I may want to look again. It's still the 2nd best album I've heard of 2010.

-Breaking Bad is heating up, but it really feels like they are heading towards the end of the show

albums should drop and/or announcements about more details and artwork, etc will be coming (or has come) about this among a lot of others soon.

Dead Letter Circus
We Valedictorians
Pure Reason Revolution
Averse (this album can already be ordered, which I may do soon)
Jimmy Gnecco
Avenged Sevenfold
Margot & the Nuclear So & So's
Hotel of the Laughing Tree
Ne Obliviscaris

Notes (lazy entry)

New Rush single will be released to radio stations next month. One of their new songs is called "Caravan" I guess. has an interview with Alex Lifeson where he confirms it and talks about the upcoming tour.

The documentary "Beyond the Lighted Stage" is premiering in theaters and/or VH1/VH1 Classic on June 26th. I don't quite follow that, or I read it wrong.

-I Love You Man still sucks.

-I haven't bought my ticket for their show at the State Fair. I'm wondering if going up there and looking for an extra would be a better move like I have the last 2 tours. I would like to see The Camera Eye and Vital Signs live anyway (and Jacob's Ladder).

Business Cards are coming for this little blog..(and I'm sure people really care!, lol)

I got a virus from vidtomp3 don't go there. Twas a effective youtube audio-riopping site for a little while, but now it's a danger zone for spyware and other shit.

And it cost me a little cash to get my os re-installed. Lesson learned.

-part of the new Menomena album's artwork is up on their myspace now. I want to see it all and more important, HEAR it. As I'm not sure anything has a shot at taking down The River Empires for aoty, but certainly their upcoming album, Mines, would be one.

-I love The River many ways it is like Blood Moon or Set Sail the Prairie all over again. I just want to see 6 months from now, if I'm still putting it on every week or more, then it will make that much sense. It's definitely quite original no matter. And I'm starting to get into Falling Up and wavering but still enjoying The Gloomcatcher as well. A review hopefully should happen soon.

Along those lines though..with the flurry of new albums surfacing or dropping, right now, I'd say basically beyond TRE and The Gloomcatcher, the only thing that has grabbed me a lot is Foals. Fuck that album has some great stuff on it. But beyond that: Judgement Day's new album is impressive for what it is, as a mood album. But it's excellent for that. And the new Jeremy Messersmith is pretty good, although I can't say yet if it's even as good as 2008's "Silver City."

The New Pornographers
Minus the Bear

all hype and lacking impressiveness right now.

MN based extreme metal band The Crinn's new album, on the other hand, I kind of was impressed by.

-Antoine Dufour just arrived
-Walking Sleep should happen soon
-Brain Drill as well
-Pain of Salvation as well (not expecting a lot sadly)
-The Chap hopefully soon, but it may not be easy to hear it even after it drops depending on things.

Bend Sinister also mentioned recently they have a new ep coming with 3 new studio songs, and 2 or 3 live tracks of new songs as well. Kind of sounds like the Fair to Midland Drawn and Quartered EP.

The Reign of Kindo's new album is expected in June. An album title is already picked out I guess.

God is an Astronaut's new album isn't far away either.

TV: the new Dr.Who I dig. Karen Gillan has the most seductive, crazy eyes I've ever seen. She would hypnotize me, easily.

Some kind of wrap-up 2010 fall announcement blog hopefully is coming, although I have a crazy concert calendar in the next 6 weeks. But some 3 weeks from now I think is the lineup announcement week. Castle is back thank gawd. But Chuck, Gary Unmarried, Accidentally On Purpose, Parenthood and Fringe off the top of my head, are the shows I watch, whose fate is unclear about.

i got 3 maybe 4 movies to see soon in theaters.
The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo
Exit Through the Gift Shop
Ghost Writer
The Square

should be within the next 2 weeks. Plus "Timer" on ON DEMAND which was compared to a Charlie Kaufman movie and is/was at the Twin Cities International Film Festival. But with it ON DEMAND through June, I plan to watch it from my couch.

I also have reviews from "Police Adjective," "Greenberg," and "The Joneses" which hopefully soon I'll find a way to write up. All of them were luke warm at best. Best picture I've seen of 2010 remains "Fish Tank" with "City Island" being 2nd best. I hope something soon leaves a stronger mark than those last 3 I saw.

The Apples in Stereo concert is this Saturday, which is the 1st of maybe 8 or more concerts I have soon.

-Soap covering Pink Floyd's "Animals"
-Jeremy Messersmith cd release show
-Jimmy Gnecco
-Pat Metheny
-Annuals/The Most Serene Republic
-Local Natives
-The New Pornographers

maybe Steve Hackett/Renaissance with Annie Haslam in Minneapolis or Milwaukee

Wolf Parade
Roger Waters
Orphaned Land

Saturday, April 24, 2010

The River Empires - The River Empires:Epilogue (2010) (REVIEW)

The River Empires
Release Date:April 06, 2010
A tale of two children- Hayden and River, who stumble upon a mystery that will seemingly cost them their lives.

The River Empires (band) is the soundtrack to the movie trilogy, The River Empires I,II, and II. Six albums will span across three films, two for each installment. Yet as the films will be told from beginning to end of the tale, the soundtracks will be released from end to beginning. This debut record does is not part of the six soundtracks, but an Epilogue to the entire film trilogy that is yet to be revealed. It is not a conclusion, but a thematic look back on what has not yet come to pass. The idea of this first, two-disc debut of The River Empires (band) is to eventually, after the films and all soundtracks are released, be a nostalgic look back on the beginning to the end of a beautiful yet terrifying story known as The River Empires.

Volume 1
1 The River Empires Theme I
2 Overture In Thales Summer
3 Our Neighbor, The Earth
4 The Coventry
5 Galloping Through Day Blooms
6 The Harbourland
7 From Faye To Astral
8 A Toast To The Snake King
9 The First Message
10 Catacombs And Orchards
11 Three Tigers
12 Stag Hollow Fair
13 Lull Of Celeste
14 From Outside The Cellar
15 Vcias In The Pines
16 A Dimmer Lux
17 Lillius

Volume 2
18(1) Witches Blossom
19(2) The Curse Of Maybel Cains
20(3) Wildbriar
21(4) The Motorbike
22(5) The Pelican
23(6) The Backyard In Sparkles
24(7) Land Of Canoes
25(8) Theon, The Fox
26(9) An Elliptic Figure From Borelli
27(10) The Marching Of The Clocks
28(11) The Woods Of Northland
29(12) The River Empires Theme II

After four or five times all the way through hearing this 88-minute two-volume, 2-disc debut record, I have been pretty thoroughly won over. How or why that is? 1st of all, as for something that long that includes 29 track titles, it hardly feels that long. And the reason that is, the themes seem to flow from track-2-track. Many of the tracks are actually just short, under-1-minute movements (or sound bytes). Others are instrumental pieces that hardly over-extend their welcome.

But after a couple of times through, of course a lot of the memorable parts, themes or melodies do stand out.

Our Neighbor, the Earth
The Coventry
The Harbourland
A Toast to the Snake King
Three Tigers
From Outside the Cellar
A Dimmer Lux
Witches Blossom
The Curse of Maybel Cains
The Marching of the Clocks

Many of the elements about this record, that are worth noting, include: Suites, reoccurring themes, various chamber instruments including xylophone, (alto-saxophone?), cello, accordion, french horn, banjo, fiddle, and wonderful female vocal harmonies.

The lyrics and movements give the story a gradual yet still rewarding experience for the listener. Although not necessarily noticed until a few times through. Many songs have these sections that seem very meticulous. The themes are very rich, you can't help but get sucked in. Also it seems likely to notice many new things with each listening. Whether it be lyrically, or some subtle arrangement in the music.

This album very effectively tells a story, or paints a picture, while avoiding cheesiness, melodrama, or even pretentiousness. Something to keep in mind, is the fact it is a soundtrack for what is three motion pictures, the lead creator, Jessy Ribordy, plans to head up. It has the name "Epilogue" as part of it's title due to the fact it is the music that is a soundtrack for the entire story. What order the movies will be made-in, to go with these seven volumes (there will be five more volumes/albums as it states above). And whether the films will be made after the whole series of albums are finished being released, or as they are being-made, remains to be seen. But that is definitely something to follow in the future of this band/project.

This really doesn't include much guitar. In spots, there is some, but it's amazing how well the music works despite that fact. But for that reason, it doesn't seem like it has much actual "rock" sound, if there is such a thing. But the different instruments, including piano and drums, really fill the sound well enough. My guess is Casey Crescenzo had a fair amount to do with that and what is excellent production quality, very much on the level or worthy of the last two The Dear Hunter album's production.

This album could be described as folk, chamber-folk, chamber-bluegrass, progressive-folk, or many other things. I don't find it matters by lacking guitar, a highly technical or heavy part, it's style in no way hurts it's unique quality. In fact, I'd say it makes it more original. How many artists have combined folk and bluegrass music, this way? Not many. Sufjan Stevens or The Decemberists I suppose, but not really how this whole project is being approached with a story-arc and the music accompanying films (or the music really being "soundtracks" for the movies, rather than the other way around).

It also seems to be promoted or mentioned via some christian sources. I guess Jessy Ribordy and Josh Shroy's previous band, Falling Up, had some of their music lumped-in with the Christian Rock scene. But there is not much, if any obvious evidence of christian music on here. At least from hearing it enough times, even without reading the lyrics (yet). King's X and Mute Math were at one point treated as Christian Rock as well, but they never were.

I really can't recommend this record enough as I'd say it's probably the most ambitious album I've heard since Apes and Androids "Blood Moon" in 2008. And The Dear Hunter fans especially could find it worth their while given Casey actually is a member and is quite notice-ably involved with the song writing, album arrangement, and the production.


Do I think it will catch on? it may, but I wouldn't be surprised if it was years from now instead of now. How much have Apes and Androids caught on? nuff said.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Fair to Midland song "Musical Chairs" live with Karnivool's singer

Ian Kenny of Karnivool singing "Musical Chairs" with Fair to Midland the other night.

Minus the Bear - Omni (2010)

4/19/10 12:27AM

the whole album will be available sometime within the 23 hours-en-change (in all likelihood sometime in the afternoon on the 19th) at the link below.

on demand albums on kcrw link

3/4/10 1:31AM

another new song My Time can be streamed here

honestly, it's not bad, but a lot of the comments on the boards are creaming over it more than I would expect. Wait and See still for me. It's only 1 song, albeit the opening track. But still, just 1 song.

3/3/10 1:31AM

itunes pre-order

1. My Time
2. Summer Angel
3. Secret Country
4. Hold Me Down
5. Excuses
6. The Thief
7. Into the Mirror
8. Animal Backwards
9. Dayglow Vista Road
10. Fooled By the Night
11. Broken China [Pre-order Only]

2/22/10 7:35PM

myspace blog

Monday, February 22, 2010

“OMNI” — New album out May 4th on Dangerbird!
..Seattle-based quintet Minus the Bear are very excited to announce the release of their new album, OMNI, set for a May 4th release on Dangerbird Records. Produced by Grammy Award winning producer Joe Chiccarelli (The White Stripes, My Morning Jacket), OMNI showcases the quintet’s remarkable gift to craft visionary and gripping compositions, and with the assistance of Chiccarelli, revealing new layers in their songwriting as they pursue the next level in their inimitable musical style. With the exploration of erotic themes and fascinating tales of human sexual relationships, OMNI is a riveting new album of rich soundscapes illustrated by Minus The Bear’s trademark precision and tremendous growth as artistic lyricists and songwriters. Beginning April 21st, Minus the Bear will embark on a 6-week North American tour premiering these new tracks. Dates to be announced shortly. OMNI marks the first release for the band on Dangerbird.
With deep bass lines, mesmerizing syncopated guitar riffs, provocative lyrics and stimulating keyboards, OMNI explodes with a bursting energy and unpredictable experimentation. From lead-off single, MY TIME, which explores the band’s widescreen synth rock, to the punch of dueling guitars and keyboards on THE THIEF, from the intense psychedelicia of ANIMAL BACKWARDS to the driving rock of HOLD ME DOWN, OMNI continues Minus The Bear’s shape-shifting evolution and is a culmination of their past influences and present inspirations.

Over the years, Minus the Bear has won over legions of fans and critics with an exhilarating live show and a sound that is uniquely their own. With a devoted fan base, Minus the Bear sell out 2000-capacity venues nationwide whether on or off album cycle, have generated more than 13 million plays on MySpace, and continuously release new material (EPs and singles) to fan and critical acclaim.

Tour dates, track listing and more news to be announced shortly.

"Omni" the word/title is verry MtB-sounding. The description sounds as good as that single they released last fall. To say I'm excited for this would be pretty accurate. May 4th it drops..we got how many records that day/week/month? Calendar

The New Porno's and Broken Social Scene that same day. And you have Foals Dead Letter Circus, The Chap, PRR and Cynic (EP) already. Plus a lot of those "Spring" titles/artists could be in May. May 4th could turn out to be a MONSTER day for new releases.

Anyway, this album quite likely will resemble the single "Into the Mirror" they released last fall. If it does, this could be an awfully addictive record.

Friday, April 16, 2010

The River Empires - The River Empires (2010)

4/16/10 4:17AM

this album is really fucking good. Some kind of detailed review is close to coming, but for now, I can say even at 88minutes, it's a top 5 album right now for 2010. Production and careful composition.

Casey Crescenzo's fingerprints are all over this, even without his presence as a lead singer or not even a ton of harmonies.

However, frustration and expectation for this to be a buzz album/band that it should be, I just know the effort isn't worth going through. In other words, i'll love it, praise it, but the logical demographics won't give a shit or even ever hear it. Their fucking loss of course.

The same goes for The Gloomcatcher.

3/25/10 12:14AM

Whoa, 29 tracks! lol.

facebook link

1 The River Empires Theme I
2 Overture In Thales Summer
3 Our Neighbor, The Earth
4 The Coventry
5 Galloping Through Day Blooms
6 The Harbourland
7 From Faye To Astral
8 A Toast To The Snake King
9 The First Message
10 Catacombs And Orchards
11 Three Tigers
12 Stag Hollow Fair
13 Lull Of Celeste
14 From Outside The Cellar
15 Vcias In The Pines
16 A Dimmer Lux
17 Lillius
18 Witches Blossom
19 The Curse Of Maybel Cains
20 Wildbriar
21 The Motorbike
22 The Pelican
23 The Backyard In Sparkles
24 Land Of Canoes
25 Theon, The Fox
26 An Elliptic Figure From Borelli
27 The Marching Of The Clocks
28 The Woods Of Northland
29 The River Empires Theme II

now seeing that, I'm wondering if this could be a feast or famine deal. Casey was involved with that melodramatic rock opera "Razia's Shadow" from Forgive Durden a few years back, and I really had a hard time listening to it.

29 bloody tracks, jeezus. Perhaps many of those are little movements. And the songs I've heard are more like The Dear Hunter style of story telling
rather than like some of the musical style/dialogue emphasized songs on Gavin Castleton's "Home" from 2009.

April 6th is rather soon, but I really didn't expect a track list that extensive. But maybe it's a false alarm, and the more the better. Assuming this project is very focused on *themes* and the music. Although this new interview with Jessy might not entirely suggest that.

He talks some about the films there and more on the origin of the project.

But if this works, I hate to compare again, but this may rival TDH in interest in a larger concept/story arc.

3/21/10 2:12PM
this is apparently the cover art
(see above)

3/3/10 12:41AM

new live song

"This Oregon based five piece outfit is full of talented multi-instrumentalists that give their music a wide range of feel and emotion. They bounce from track to track, sometimes with simple acoustic arrangements, and others with full on production including a full choir. It should be a great night in SODO, and a rare treat for those bold enough to stay out late on a school night."

2/26/10 11:56PM

7 albums, 3 films. That's a lot to live up to. And the Coheed/The Dear Hunter comparisons are probably impossible to ignore.

That being said, the ambition level on this whole thing went up a couple of notches.

A Very Important Message
February 24th, 2010 by Jessy | 10 Comments

The River Empires (band) is the soundtrack for a trilogy that will soon be told in film format- The River Empires I,II, & III (movies). The trilogy will tell the story of two children who, during one particular summer, find a glass bottle with a message in it that changes their lives forever. As the trilogy will tell the story from the beginning to end, the band soundtracks the films from end to beginning. Now this is one of seven records that will soundtrack the films, but because the films have yet to be revealed, there was need for an introduction to the story. Since the soundtrack is from end to beginning, that just wasn’t possible. So the idea was decided that the debut record put out by The River Empires (band) would be the epilogue to the trilogy. Hence the reason why this record is self titled (the following soundtracks will be clear which parts in the films they are scoring). This debut record is a musical journey that sums up thematic ideas weaved throughout the entire tale. The story will not make sense to you after listening to this record, nor will you gain any insight as to the mysteries following the first film of the trilogy. The story hasn’t even begun. This is simply a conclusive presentation to a world of perplexity, oddity, mystery and detail that, after the film trilogy and the other six soundtracks are finished, will be a nostalgic look back on the beginning of a strange and terrifying idea called The River Empires.

Brace yourselves for April 6, 2010.

Cloud Cult - Light Chasers (2010)

This is their next full-length album, due out on August 17th.

They also have a new ep with 1 new track called "Running With the Wolves" that includes 3 older (b-sides?) tunes.

1 Running With the Wolves
2 Mr. Tambourine Man
3 A Place
4 Where Are You Now?

Mr.Tambourine Man, a cover of the classic 60's tune?

This ep is being released on 4/20 to coincide with Earth Day I guess. But it's already available for $3 digitally at their online store.

2008's "Feel Good Ghosts" was a surprising addiction for me. I knew the band's name, but never expected to like them. I have since checked out some of their older work and enjoy that as well. So, this new album I certainly expect more of the same at this point.

It is still really sad I have yet to see them live still. They should play a show at The Varsity instead of 1st Crapenue. Or maybe even 1 of the theaters, and I'd definitely make an effort to go. Maybe I'll win tickets from Radio K.

Circa Survive - Blue Sky Noise (2010) + "Get Out" single..DAVID BOTRILL

4/16/10 3:16AM

Comments and elaboration about the band, their fan base and this album.

1) When they went on tour with with Ours in 2007, their fan base boo-ed, gave the middle-finger and threw quarters among other things at Jimmy Gnecco of Ours.

2) Upon my 1st positive impression of the band in 2006, some clown posted automatically playing videos of some other band or artist on their myspace page. I messaged the user who did that and expressed my disinterest for the good of the band. The reason being, when someone unfamiliar with a band, clicks on their myspace page, they should hear THAT BAND, not a video of some other band who has some user post a video when signing their page. I explained this to the user in a private message and they ended up taking all sorts of offense to it and had no agreement with me. In fact, I question whether they even understood why what they did was a problem. And it wouldn't surprise me they did the same on many other band's pages. But it's childish behavior like that, which is another example of how tactless many of their fan base are.

And then just recently on this very blog, a few of the responses to this entry I posted expressing my opinion and actually IN SUPPORT of the band in a lot of ways. If people actually follow why I would even include anything about them at this stage, they'd understand it was only because I may actually be able to like them again. But to not include my background and the whole context of my experience with them and their music would just be lacking in telling the honest truth.

But some of their fan base are still as petulant as how Anthony Green can sound, they had to try and reply to said entry no matter. Hardly the only examples (on this blog), but those failed trolling reply attempts were pretty much the end of my allowing ANY COMMENTS on this blog.

But with all that being said, my impressions of this album are this.

This album is better than their other 2 lps, but the biggest fundamental problem with this band still exists, and I'd assume will always exist as long as they have Anthony Green as their singer. He still sounds like a whiny little brat far too often. David Botrill's presence sadly didn't change that much if at all. He sounds like a kid who is sent to his room by his parents kicking and screaming. He annunciates certain words like a girl or a mother. "Grouwwwww-nd" for example at 1 point. No! no! no! Don't sing it like that you little kid! You sound like a spoiled brat when you do!

The sad thing is, he can sound good, or at least older and more mature when he sings in lower registers. In fact there's 1 track, a piano ballad that he does and his vocals sound fine on that song. If the whole album, and pretty much every song he ever sang in the future was that way, his vocals would be not only listen-able, probably pretty good. And actually, there are some moments he does chant or sing out higher, especially when doing harmonies and not using any words, that sound good. Like Jonsi from Sigur Ros or even Jimmy Gnecco in a way. But it's way too few and far between still. Maybe if they made an album with no lyrics, but him just chanting with oohs, ahhs, and la la la's, his voice would work.

It's awful how much of a waste the music on this album is, because there is some really fine guitar work and textural writing here. It would probably be good for the lead guitarist and drummer to do music in another project without Anthony Green, and get a better or at least adequate singer. Get the guy from Minus the Bear even, given Circa Survive is basically like Minus the Bear with a little kid singing. Such a sad waste of good music, and a waste of a major label release and record deal. And a waste that Kaddisfly didn't get said deal. All they need to do is get an acceptable singer, or hell even have him sing like he does in spots, and this would potentially be a fine record..maybe even a top 10 for the year. The cymbals clipping in spots were the only other issue with it, but the music is so good, that it would probably become a minor issue.

But no, I'm done with this band. The best producer in the music business today, David Botrill, couldn't fix their singer, so I don't know why I should believe it'll ever happen.

2/23/10 9:56PM

edit: track list added below.

2/17/10 12:03AM
This 3rd lp is being released on 4/20/2010 as well.

1. Strange Terrain
2. Get Out
3. Glass Arrows
4. I Felt Free
5. Imaginary Enemy
6. Through the Desert Alone
7. Frozen Creek
8. Fever Dreams
9. Spirit of the Stairwell
10. The Longest Mile
11. Compendium
12. Dyed in the Wool

Studio album by Circa Survive
Released April 20, 2010
Genre Experimental, Indie rock, Ambient, Progressive rock
Label Atlantic Records
Producer David Bottrill

key word in this is David Botrill, the man who has a very impressive resume at getting bands to SOUND GOOD. Fair to Midland's breakthrough "Fables From a Mayfly:..." is a perfect example in a lot of ways.

But as maybe I have or yet to have posted in this blog, Circa Survive I more or less cannot stand. I can't stand Anthony Green's 12-year-old-spoiled-brat feminine vocals. And maybe even more than the range of his voice, THE STYLE. the way he expresses himself. Blech..he sounds like Thom Yorke..maybe worse at times. blech blech blech..finger-nails-on-a-chalkbaord.

However, when I learned of Botrill's working with them, I decided I would give them 1 more shot. If ANYONE can get Green to sound listenable it would be Mr.Botrill.

Well, I'm not sure yet, but this 1st single sounds okay from hearing it once. And also what Botrill is a master of, is getting the LAYERS and ARRANGEMENTS to show muscle and punch. Compare the songs from i.f.s to Fables..that is certainly 1 of the big differences.

This album still may suck and Green as well, but like Riverside last year, I won't be shocked to find this to be the only thing this band ever has made/will make worth my time. Hopefully he got Green to start showing some balls and sing thicker and deeper. Not like the pussy he always sounds like on their 1st 2 albums.

And perhaps Botrill has also influenced their music itself to be much better. Which at times, separating what they have had without the appalling singing, has had some moments. But maybe Botrill got their instrumentalists and the band to finally grow up and become a professional band.

But if this sucks more or less as much as their others, I will never have any interest in this band again, until Green is gone as their singer.

also a little ironic and almost annoying how this new single is put up the very day Water & Bodies (the guys from Kaddisfly) release their new EP. This CS album is their major label debut, the deal that Kaddisfly was going for and in-effect lost to this vastly inferior band. ironies..they always force their way into these events..

Jeremy Messersmith - The Reluctant Graveyard (2010)

4/16/10 2:17AM

cover art:

hear the new song "Violet"

3/28/10 3:04PM

released on May 4th digitally. Hardcopies? tba
And I guess the digital sales via his site and bandcamp will be pay what you want. interview

You've been working on a new album. Tell me more about that and when it will be released.

Sure, it's another concept album called 'The Reluctant Graveyard' -- eleven songs about death and dying, which pretty much guarantees no one will buy it [laughs]. Seriously, I think it is my best songwriting so far. I would characterize it as being in a Beatles wrapper so to speak. Oh, and it includes an orchestra, so it's big and epic. I'll be throwing out some mix tapes at SXSW and a few songs from it will be leaking out over the next couple of months. The official release is set for May.

there's also a good interview Jeremy did at SXSW with Radio K here when you scroll about 2/3 down the page (and have to load in all the other videos unfortunately

he talks about the 60's psych/pop bigger-band influence on this new record. I am somewhat optimistic based on the way he's describing this new album. I wonder if the Sufjan comparison will even be relevant hearing it (which might be a good thing).

Thursday, April 15, 2010

The Dear Hunter - Fanclub Membership offer ($125)


Only 250 available!

April 14, 2010 — THE DEAR HUNTER has been taking a much-deserved break after criss-crossing the U.S. for most of 2009 in support of their critically acclaimed ACT III: LIFE AND DEATH, which was released June 23 on Triple Crown Records. That doesn’t mean they’ve stopped working though.

The band has been spending time putting together an extra special, super limited package for fans who sign up for a lifetime fan club membership. For $125, starting on April 14, 250 lucky fans will receive:

ACT I: THE LAKE SOUTH, THE RIVER NORTH and ACT II: THE MEANING OF, & ALL THINGS REGARDING MS. LEADING on clear vinyl with brand new, never-before-seen artwork encompassing both ACT I and ACT II.
A download card that will contain several never-before-heard alternate versions of songs from ACT I and ACT II.
A new digital-only EP featuring 3 brand new songs (unrelated to ACT I-III), available only to members of the fan club upon purchase.
A lifetime “The Dear Hunter Passport,” which guarantees entry into any show, anytime, anywhere in the world. Specifically, a laminated pass with their picture on it. *
A personal thank you in the liner notes of ACT IV, which is currently in the works.
A hand-written letter from singer/songwriter/producer/multi-instrumentalist Casey Crescenzo.
A signed poster of the artwork for the limited edition EP.
To make it even more special, there will be ONE Golden Ticket placed in the vinyl packaging that guarantees the recipient a private performance by THE DEAR HUNTER anywhere in the U.S. of their choosing, whether it’s in a club, living room, back yard, school gym, etc.

“After the past 4 years of operating on the standard record cycle system,” explains Crescenzo, “we had been searching for a way to step out of our box. As soon as this idea was presented, we were offered one creative opportunity after another—re-examining our approach to the visual nature of projects from the beginning of the band at the same time we opened the creative floodgates on new material in our home studio. We have always held our fans and friends in such high regard, so offering something special like this is truly exciting, and it gives fans a chance to become an even bigger part of what this band is about.”

The band’s website, Facebook, Myspace and Twitter pages will feature a video greeting by Casey Crescenzo, which will include information about the package as it’s made available.

* Minimal restrictions will apply (i.e. festivals, etc.). Entry to shows will be done on an RSVP basis, but due to the limited nature of this offer, it won’t cause much restriction.

I would LOVE to do this, especially with the lifetime concert pass option. And I did just save some $ on my taxes. If it were $50, I'd sign-up in a heartbeat. I guess it depends on what happens from the other night and what my budget looks like in the next few weeks.

I was just thinking about something tho as for the lifetime pass thing. Being on The Dear Hunter Street Team I should have chances to be on the guestlist, at least in Minneapolis, anyway. But I have no idea if that group has done much since the initial creation last Summer.

The Antlers - Sylvia (official video)

Just saw this on The Antlers Blog
Very excited to finally see this band next Tuesday (4/20) page

[The Antlers. Darby Cicci, Peter Silberman and Michael Lerner]

Silberman's band, The Antlers, now a threesome have just finished a video for one of those tracks, called "Sylvia." Director Trey Hock explored the depths of the song and found a story about a tortured relationship in sepia there. "I tried to think of examples of truly frustrating or tragic unions," he said of conceiving the narrative structure of the video. "I felt that an argument with someone who was not physically there, would be the pinnacle of this type of torment. A restricted color palette and almost uncomfortably static shots kept coming to mind."

"After talking with the band, I knew that I wanted to explore the style of the silent era of the 1920s," he added. Some of his inspiration came from D.W. Griffith's 1919 film "Broken Blossoms" (about brutal boxer, his young daughter, and the Chinese immigrant who falls in love with her but that's another story).

also some SXSW footage

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Jimmy Gnecco - The Heart (2010)

4/13/10 7:56PM

July 20th is the drop date.

cmj article (which I scratch my head why Radio K has an ad there. Radio K has NEVER played Ours before as far as I know)

Jimmy Gnecco, frontman for the alternative rock band Ours, has announced plans to release his first solo album, titled The Heart. The label Bright Antenna will put out the album on July 20, and its first single, "Bring You Home," will hit radio June 22. In addition to self-producing The Heart, Gnecco performs every instrument heard on the album—guitar, bass, keyboards, drums and others. He also supplied the 13 tracks with his impassioned, melancholic vocal that fans of Ours have come to love.

Track Listing For The Heart:
01. Rest Your Soul
02. Light On The Grave
03. Mystery
04. The Heart
05. Bring You Home
06. These Are My Hands
07. Gravity
08. I Heard Your Singing
09. Take A Chance
10. Darling
11. Patiently Waiting
12. It's Only Love
13. Talk To Me

4/8/10 8:14PM

the 1st single is available to stream/download (from Bright Antenna's site, the label that's releasing it).

Bring You Home

a video I guess was made for that track as well. I like it, although it's just a short little diddy.

Also courtesy of A Good Day For Airplay

here's some of the new songs live.


May. 06 - Mississippi Studios ( Portland, OR )
May. 07 - WOW Hall ( Eugene, OR )
May. 08 - The Tractor Tavern ( Seattle, WA )
May. 11 - Walnut Room ( Denver, CO )
May. 14 - 7Th Street Entry ( Minneaplis, MN )
May. 15 - Empty Bottle ( Chicago, IL )
May. 17 - The Legendary Horseshoe Tavern ( Toronto, Canada )
May. 19 - Blind Pig ( Ann Arbor, MI )
May. 20 - Cambridge Room @ House Of Blues ( Cleveland, OH )
May. 21 - Rumba Cafe ( Columbus, OH )
May. 22 - Tin Angel ( Philadelphia, PA )
May. 24 - The Rock And Roll Hotel ( Washington, DC )
May. 25 - Bowery Ballroom ( New York, NY )
May. 27 - Paradise Rock Club ( Boston, MA )
May. 30 - The Evening Muse ( Charlotte, NC )
Jun. 01 - Vinyl ( Atlanta, GA )
Jun. 02 - WorkPlay Theatre ( Birmingham, AL )
Jun. 04 - The Prophet Bar ( Dallas, Texas )
Jun. 05 - Stubb’s BBQ ( Austin, Texas )
Jun. 08 - The Rhythm Room ( Phoenix, Arizona )
Jun. 10 - Cafe Du Nord ( San Francisco, CA )
2/27/10 10:08AM

a couple of notes about this. Vinyl & a Deluxe Edition are in the works. I haven't seen any other details really yet, but I would expect they will come out soon. Release date and guess it'll be released sometime Late Spring/Early Summer (May-July-ish)

Jimmy is also playing at SXSW not surprisingly.

Bright Antenna here. We were listening to the vinyl master reference of Jimmy's new record yesterday, and, wow, if you don't have a turntable you should get one before this is released! It's like Jimmy is sitting in the room with you. Who out there is a vinyl fan? And Jimmy's will come with a download code for mp3s!

Working with Jimmy Gnecco on some additional material for the deluxe packaging.

2/8/10 11:41PM

Well here's a live video from The Mercury Lounge last Wednesday in NYC. The song "These Are My Hands" which I believe is the 1st single from this record.

More information about this record I gotta believe isn't far away as February was the original projection date. I don't think we're going to have a Mercy/Dancing For the Death... situation again given the label status.

bumpings will occur of course when info is available.

Fair to Midland + Karnivool 4/12/10 Maplewood, MN

It's too bloody late to really write up something in depth. Also this pathetic situation I can't get out of my head at this moment.

there are more trigger-happy asshole c's than I realized.

c: "how much have you had to drink?"

5mins later

c: "How much have you had to drink?"
a: "I've had nothing to drink. I'm sober"
c:"well your driving is horrendous. You might want to ride a bicycle"

a lot more to it, but the whole situation seemed unreal, comical, yet almost something just out of bad odds. It's hardly over though.

The 'Vool floored me pretty much live. Most of the Sound Awake songs they did really do work even better live. I suppose "New Day" still ends up dragging like the album version, but otherwise.

Simple Boy
Set Fire to the Hive
All I Know
New Day

Themata they really bring out well live. Quite epic.

My 8th concert seeing Fair to Midland in 4 years in Minnesota (and they hail from Dallas, TX, 850 miles South of St.Paul) Fair to Midland always seem to change or add new things to their shows. Sometimes subtle, sometimes just new versions or variations.

Walls of Jericho
Uh-Oh (new)
Kyla Cries Cologne

Rikki Tikki Tavi (new)
Musical Chairs (new)

1 or 2 of these 3 new songs
-A Loophole in Limbo
-Bright Bulbs and Sharp Tools
-Mines (name may have more to it)

Seafarer's Knot
Tall Tales Taste Like Sour Grapes
Dance of the Manatee

April Fools and Eggmen

also very cool to learn. Fair to Midland are I guess now able, via the record label they are still with, Serjical Strike Records, receive distribution for their new releases from Rocket Science Distribution. So that is great to know and what it also means if all goes well:

a) the band hits the studio in or around September
b) the new album is released in January or (relatively) early 2011.

i only say this with vague words because me, and most music/entertainment fans know how easily this stuff can get delayed or pushed back. But it's been so long and the band have a ton of material, I would think they want to release something pretty soon. Who knows, maybe a single or ep in November or maybe that in January and the album is in March/April/May 2011.

Monday, April 12, 2010

The Chap - Well Done Europe (2010)

4/12/10 8:00PM

twitter link
official announcement: new chap album WELL DONE EUROPE out on Lo Recordings on may 24th about 7 hours ago via web

2/18/10 10:06PM

new album by the UK Indietronica band. They posted this info on Their Twitter the other day.

here's the artwork for one-of/the 1st single "Well Done You" which apparently has been up on their myspace for awhile now.

the more I hear these guys, the more I enjoy them.


Apes and Androids fans who don't know them may want to check this group out.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Caprica: Midseason

This is something I wrote one day after work soon after the midseason finale.

The 1st season (or 1/2 season) of this show has been maybe as good if not better than I expected. It is a prequel series, but not being done in such an
obvious way. Connecting the dots so predictably and melodramatically as other ineffective prequels have been done. It is not really BSG -1.0. But at the same time, telling the origin of a mechanical or artificial lifeform, can be interesting, if they avoid cheese. Everything with the holo technology and avatars being alive; and how the 1st cylon found it's way out of the v-world. And being the avatar of the daughter of the co's ceo.

I think the girl who plays Zoe (Alessandra Torresani) is probably the most interesting part of the show, which they cast the right actor to play her. She's both beautiful yet compelling. They are selling, like BSG did, the (AI) Cylon-sympathy.

So now how they're going to tell what she does at Gemenon could be interesting. What is in Gemenon? some scientists working on synthesized bodies? More of how the human Zoe was so brilliant to create a seemingly real copy of herself in the v-world? And what is both James Marsters and the head mistress's relationship to whoever she needs to see at Gemenon. I sense whoever it is, we will learn more of what the human Zoe was going there for, and for good reasons why.

Of course the plot with Daniel Graystone and Vergis keeps heating up. And is Amanda dead? I suppose it could go either way, and it may depend on if the actress decided she wants to continue on the show.

We'll see. Merlin takes over Caprica's timeslot this coming Friday and I imagine it will be on for a number of months. Stargate Universe (blech) , Warehouse 13 (yay!), Eureka (blech) or that Amanda Tapping Sanctuary show may also be aired there. But it's supposed to return for the 2nd half of the 1st season next late Summer/early Fall.

Thursday, April 8, 2010


Time Machine tour.

We get "The Camera Eye" and "Vital Signs."

I really don't enjoy the Minnesota State Fair, but I can't see missing this. Perhaps a means to get in or see this show will be made like it has the last couple of shows. Offering a $20 bill on the street works well for me.

06/29 – Albuquerque, NM @ Hard Rock Casino
07/01 – Kansas City, MO @ Starlight Theatre
07/02 – Milwaukee, WI @ Summerfest
07/05 – Chicago, IL @ Charter One Pavilion
07/09 – Sarina, ON @ Rogers Sarina Bayfest
07/13 – Toronto, ON @ Molson Canadian Amphitheatre
07/15 – Quebec City, QC @ Festival d’été de Québec
07/17 – Toronto, ON @ Air Canada Centre
07/19 – Uncasville, CT @ Mohegan Sun
07/21 – Philadelphia, PA @ Susquehanna Bank Center
07/23 – Saratoga Springs, NY @ SPAC
07/24 – Wantagh, NY @ Nikon at Jones Beach
08/05 – Salt Lake City, UT @ USANA Amphitheatre
08/07 – Seattle, WA @ White River Amphitheatre
08/09 – San Francisco, CA @ Shoreline Amphitheatre
08/11 – Los Angeles, CA @ LA Forum
08/13 – Irvine, CA @ Verizon Wireless Amphitheater
08/14 – Las Vegas, NV @ MGM Grand Garden Arena
08/16 – Denver, CO @ Red Rocks Amphitheatre
08/20 – Wichita, KS @ INTRUST Bank Arena
08/22 – St. Louis, MO @ Verizon Wireless Amphitheater
08/25 – Omaha, NE @ Qwest Center
08/27 – St. Paul, MN @ Minnesota State Fair
08/29 – Columbus, OH @ Nationwide Arena
08/31 – Allentown, PA @ Allentown Fair
09/02 – Syracuse, NY @ New York State Fair
09/03 – Holmdel, NJ @ PNC Bank Arts Center
09/14 – Boston, MA @ TD Garden
09/16 – Pittsburgh, PA @ Consol Energy Center
09/18 – Washington, DC @ Jiffy Lube Live Amphitheater
09/21 – Tulsa, OK @ BOK Center
09/23 – San Antonio, TX @ AT&T Center
09/25 – Houston, TX @ Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion
09/26 – Dallas, TX @ Center
09/29 – Atlanta, GA @ Verizon Wireless Amphitheatre
10/01 – Tampa, FL @ Ford Amphitheatre
10/02 – West Palm Beach, FL @ Cruzan Amphitheatre

Godspeed You Black Emperor Reunion!


I am going with this, but there is some mystery and vagueness to that statement. The Refused reunion was a false-alarm so if this happens to be as well, I won't be surprised. It also doesn't say specific plans. A new album, tour, really, etc.

if it is true, I'm looking forward to where there music may be now. I honestly still have to fully embrace their music, especially the stuff other than Skinny Fists. They are 1 of the greatest *mood* bands I've found myself into (Sigur Ros also would qualify, the "post" element to both bands not really having to do with it).

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Warpaint to play Lolopalooza (lalaalalalahhh,smurfs-festival)

edit: some of these new songs are ace!

I can't stand festivals like this..the *scenester* vibe they give off and god awful bands they pimp. They pretty much are a style-no-substance-flavor-of-the-month activity. In 10 years, bands like MGMT and Phoenix won't be promoted by this "scene" but they make their festival out to be where you need to be if you "have a life" or are "hip."

lala smurf-fest Warpaint bio

This would make a good mascot for the festival.

Warpaint is an all-girl quartet from Los Angeles. They weave intricate guitar lines, hypnotic vocals, and driving post-punk rhythms into gorgeous, sprawling songs that skirt the line between the soundscapes of psychedelia and intimacy.

while this isn't the worst description ever, why do they ALWAYS HAVE TO USE THE WORD "Punk" or "Post-Punk" and they rarely use the word "progressive." (although with "progressive" used in the alternative-press post-hardcore/emo scene, it's probably worse than not using it there). "Art Rock" "experimental" or "psychedelic" I would think would suffice well enough.

So having Warpaint and some other actual good bands on the bill (The Antlers, Minus the Bear, Mute Math, The New Pornographers and some others), while it still feels wrong to me, especially a (relatively) new and unknown act like Warpaint getting on there should benefit them in a lot of ways.

Even beyond the skin-crawling vibe that's given from the very idea of seeing all those artists at that festival, promoted by scenesters, zines, hipster blogs, etc (although I'd say the P4K festival would be even worse), all of these bands should be or have come to Minnesota within a year from the festival.

So, why in the blue fuck would I ever want to go to this? I've been to the all-day (or all-night) prog festivals enough times to know, long festivals are

1) far more $ than they are worth
2) far too draining and a job to get through, that the thing you want most is to get the day over and get to bed
3) far too crowded with bands playing for way too short, compared to even an opening set in town.

At least Coachella and some other festivals, an online stream is available. Lolopalooza (even the fact it's the oldest), if they have to happen, should always be stream-able. Watching them online (or on tv perhaps) is really the only way to experience these things for me. Otherwise, they have really no value or importance to me beyond giving EXPOSURE to bands like Warpaint or Local Natives that can really be helped out by it (at least financially and future touring opportunities).

But seeing them announce their lineups with so many horrible acts, on the same bill with artists I like, and I know/feel don't necessarily deserve to be smothered-in, with artists they frankly don't-deserve-to-be, or shouldn't be mixed-with, is just nauseating.

As I just posted on twitter, where the fuck is MY SCENE? (if there is or should be a "scene" at all). It sure isn't "indie" and it isn't really the prog, prog metal scenes either.

Someday, there will be some kind of College-Art-Rock festival, website, etc. There already is in a parallel dimension.

dredg - Leitmotif (Vinyl 2010; April Fools or not?)

This May we will be celebrating 11 years of "Leitmotif" with its re-release on vinyl and a California tour where we'll be playing "Leitmotif" in its entirety.

Check out the tour section to see if we are playing near you!

tour dates
05/13/10The CatalystSanta Cruz, CA
05/14/10The TroubadourWest Hollywood, CA
05/15/10 The Troubadour West Hollywood, CA
05/16/10 Velvet Jones Santa Barbara, CA
05/18/10 Downtown Brewing Co San Luis Obispo, CA
05/19/10 Audie's Olympic Fresno, CA
05/20/10 The Boardwalk Orangevale, CA
05/21/10 Slim's San Francisco, CA

I saw this show in full, but I'd love to again. And if in fact they are doing a vinyl release and this is not an April Fool's joke (it was posted on April 1st) I shall be purchasing at least 1 copy, even with the likelihood I never play it.

Saturday, April 3, 2010

RUSH: Beyond the Lighted Stage (2010)

4/3/10 11:35PM

Premieres April 24th, 25th, 26th, and 30th.


[RUSHD] | 2009 | 106 min | Feature Documentary

Directed by: Scot McFadyen and Sam Dunn

World Premiere
Interests: Documentary, Music
Cast & Credits
Director: Scot McFadyen, Sam Dunn
Producer: Scot McFadyen, Sam Dunn
Editor: Mike Munn
Executive Producer: Noah Segal, Pegi Cecconi, Shelley Nott.
Writers: Scot McFadyen, Sam Dunn, Mike Dunn
Cinematographer: Martin Hawkes
Program Notes

For fans of the legendary Canadian band RUSH, this is the documentary to experience. A comprehensive exploration of the entire history of this extraordinary power trio, from their early days growing up in Toronto, through each of their landmark albums, to the present day. Sit back and revel in the words, music, and wonder of Geddy Lee, Alex Lifeson, and Neal Peart.

With a career spanning four decades, RUSH is one of the most successful bands in the history of popular music, but despite their remarkable career achievements, they have never been recognized as critics' darlings. Directors Scot McFadyen and Sam Dunn instead revel in interviews with the band's admirers and contemporaries, including Gene Simmons (Kiss), Billy Corgan (Smashing Pumpkins), Sebastian Bach (Skid Row), Kirk Hammett (Metallica), Jack Black, and others. Chock-full of rare backstage and concert footage, RUSH: Beyond the Lighted Stage leaves no stone unturned in its creation of an intimate portrait of these immensely talented and iconoclastic musicians.
--Jim Browne

imdb page

Damn, I've wanted to attend Tribeca for quite awhile now (and Sundance, Toronto, Cannes? lol..and SXSW among so many other events). On the day I find out Hollywood Video stores in my neighborhood are dropping/have dropped like flies, I hope this documentary doesn't come down to signing up to NetFlix to see; i.e. I hope Landmark and Lagoon gets it, if not the Multiplex's or even in 3D @ the Minnesota Zoo. Now I would spend the $15+ and the 40+ miles of gas to go see that.

Then again, sometimes this stuff screens with free passes. I just hope I don't miss info about one.

Sam Dunn talks a little about it in this thing on the Iron Maiden documentary

Friday, April 2, 2010

Kiss Kiss - All They Draw (Video, 2010)

entertaining, very well-shot and edited.

I might add, in helping (donating) to help them out make their way down to SXW a few weeks back, they were kind enough to send me some early/pre-Kiss Kiss stuff, including live work that is pretty damn impressive itself. Like, they might want to consider releasing some of it at some point.

Also I am in contact with them, so that is rather cool. They're just normal people, traveling right now on tour. But I sense quite down-to-earth that, especially given they still have yet to play in Minnesota (since I became a fan at least in 2006); at least chatting live with them is pretty cool.

Most of my favorite people who are musicians are like that. Very personal-able and it seems these guys are right in there. Why it is still too bad I haven't seen them play a concert. Hopefully that'll change soon.