Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Amoeba Records interviews Doctor Who

Nice interview! I imagine it was convenient to do when Matt Smith and Karen Gillan were appearing at Comic-Con in July. Sadly, I have not seen more than 1st part of the Series 6 Premiere thus far, and didn't even know there'd be a *spoiler* in this interview revealed.

But so be it. Having finally watched the Psych Season 6 episode Dual Spires tonight, and being completely caught-up with that show (and now really, even more wanting to watch/revisit Twin Peaks, given that episodes cast and obvious theme), I am kind of wanting to catch-up on Doctor Who. Funny too, as the two stars agree on the band "The Who" given the name of the show, lol.

Now, if only Cheapo or The Electric Fetus could bring those two, or any other television series stars in for a similar kind of appearance or interview. But we don't have anything as big as San Diego's Comic-Con I suppose.

Steven Wilson - Grace For Drowning (2011)

9/1/11 12:04AM
Official video for "Remainder the Black Dog." Well, it's not without curiosity, but Lasse Holle's style is rather samey and predictable, as the style looks very much like so many other Porcupine Tree and Steven Wilson videos. Then again, save for some jazzy elements (soprano sax), the song itself will remind people of Steven's other work. I guess without hearing the rest of the record, this track I am skeptical will be one of the bigger highlights for me. But we'll see.

  8/10/11 3:50PM
Song and Video for "Track One" (off disc 2)

7/17/11 11:37PM - 7/20/11 1:13AM

I know this is a few hours late, but you can download the track "Remainder the Black Dog" by going here and signing up for the KScope email list.

There's also samples of every song on this album on the streaming player here

Release date September 26/27th, 2011.

Disc 1:
1. Grace for Drowning 2:00
2. Sectarian 8:00
3. Deform to Form a Star 8:00
4. No Part of Me 5:45
5. Postcard 4:30
6. Raider Prelude 2:30
7. Remainder the Black Dog 9:15

40 minutes

Disc 2:
1. Belle de Jour 3:00
2. Index 4:45
3. Track One 4:15
4. Raider II 23:15
5. Like Dust I Have Cleared From My Eye 8:00


Says Wilson, "“'Insurgentes' was an important step for me into something new. This record takes that as a starting point, but it’s more experimental and more eclectic. For me the golden period for music was the late sixties and early seventies, when the album became the primary means of artistic expression, when musicians liberated themselves from the 3 minute pop song format, and started to draw on jazz and classical music especially, combining it with the spirit of psychedelia to create “journeys in sound” I guess you could call them. So without being retro, my album is a kind of homage to that spirit. There’s everything from [Ennio] Morricone-esque film themes to choral music to piano ballads to a 23 minute progressive jazz –inspired piece. I’'ve actually used a few jazz musicians this time, which is something I picked up from my work remixing the King Crimson records.”"

US Tour Dates: Minneapolis of course isn't allowed.

Tuesday, November 8th – Orlando, FL – House of Blues
Thursday, November 10th – Baltimore, MD – Ram's Head Live
Friday, November 11th – NY, NY – Best Buy Theater
Saturday, November 12th – Philadelphia, PA – Temple Performing Arts Center
Sunday, November 13th – Boston, MA – Berklee Performance Center
Friday, November 18th – Chicago, IL – Park West

6/24/11 8:42PM

This new teaser for 1 of his 2 solo records I guess expected to drop this Fall (Deform to Form a Star / Like Dust I Have Cleared From My Eye being the other). The new teaser video right below has more than the original trailer. I guess the artwork in it is the cover.

edit: or some are saying there are not 2 albums, but rather 1 DOUBLE ALBUM in fact titled "Grace For Drowning" with the individual discs being "Deform to Form a Star" and "Like Dust I Have Cleared from My Eye."

Color me a tad more optimistic.

Steven Wilson - Grace for Drowning (album cover reveal) from Kscope on Vimeo.

Steven Wilson - Grace for Drowning (album teaser) from Kscope on Vimeo.

Monday, August 29, 2011

The Faceless - TBA (2011) (1.0) (re-Signing with Summerian)

8/29/11 12:48AM

new interview with guitarist Michael Keene and new bassist Evan Brewer. Again, good info, but nothing concrete about a title, time frame really, or anything more than just a few vague comments about the new album. It is kind of cool to hear how Evan had a role in helping them out, long before joining the band.

8/23/11 12:42PM

They've posted some stuff on facebook here and there this year, but nothing definitive other than the fact their longtime vocalist Derek Rydquist left (on good terms I guess), and they replaced him with a guy named Geoff Ficco.

But this video is a bit of an update, and who knows exactly when it was all shot. It could have been a month ago. But the important information, other than the intrigue about this record, is, there is no info about when it's coming out still.
And the clock is ticking as it's only about 5 weeks until the ending of the window for late-in-the-year promotion. I..e in a little over 5 weeks, if nothing specific is announced, in all likelihood, it'll have to drop in 2012. And along with Painted In Exile announcing Spring 2012 as a projection for their new record, it's not exactly helping the quality and depth of Extreme Metal releases in 2011.

However, if Ne Obliviscaris does come out as it seems more likely now, that may help.

2/9/11 6:30PM


Los Angeles- based progressive death metal titans THE FACELESS have re-signed with Sumerian Records. The band will enter guitarist's Michael Keene's studio in March to begin recording its third album for a summer release.

Commented Sumerian Records founder Ash Avildsen: "Of every signing in the history of Sumerian Records, I feel the re-signing of THE FACELESS is the most symbolic and monumental of all.

"Back in 2006 when I stopped touring, I was living in a one-bedroom Venice Beach apartment as an aspiring but struggling DIY booking agent trying to pay the bills. With a dream of having a record label built upon the spirit of family and perseverance and comprised of a heavy, cutting-edge roster, I set out to find the perfect first band. I could not have chosen a better group than THE FACELESS to begin the story of Sumerian Records. With no office or staff, just sheer determination and a vision, we shook hands and decided let's show the business what the little guys can do together with all the odds against us.

"Both as a huge fan and a true friend, I have watched the members of THE FACELESS go from being an unsigned, struggling local L.A. band to a critically acclaimed, internationally renowned, touring force that have been chosen to travel the planet with MESHUGGAH, LAMB OF GOD[IMG], CANNIBAL CORPSE, IN FLAMES, BETWEEN THE BURIED AND ME, NECROPHAGIST, THE BLACK DAHLIA[IMG] MURDER, CYNIC and more.

"One of the greatest joys of my job is to be able to help incredibly talented musicians build and grow a career.

"THE FACELESS have undoubtedly become an influential, timeless, progressive metal act that continues to evolve before the world's eyes. Now, with their songwriting at an all-time high and their forward-thinking approach to music showing no signs of slowing down, I believe 2011 will be the biggest year THE FACELESS has ever seen and I am very grateful to be a part of it."

Added Keene: "After five years and two successful albums, we've decided to sign on with the sphinx-obsessed, record-pedaling Sumerian Records for some more! We've worked together from the start of both of our respective careers and have grown together the whole way.

"That brings me to the question, if it ain't broke, why fix it?

"There is no doubt that Sumerian has been there for us time and time again when we've needed them and they continue to grow and expand as a label every day. I'm very confident in their work for us and am proud to not only call everyone at Sumerian our business partners, but also our great friends.

"This next record is going to be the most musical and progressive record we've made.

"Since recording 'Planetary Duality', the goals of THE FACELESS have changed a bit. You can still expect a fast, technical and blistering record, but I personally am less focused on a musical aesthetic and more on musicality and making an expressive, unique, moody and expansive record. Speed picking, flying double bass and skin melting guitar solos are certainly still in order. However, you can also expect more clean vocals with big harmonies, some unique instrumentation, dark moody passages, interesting keyboards, synth guitars, vocoder and sequenced segments. It's going to be the most focused and depressive FACELESS record to date.

"I'll also be filming as much of the recording process on my FlipCam and posting frequent webisodes along the way.

"I'm really excited to show our fans a glimpse into the daily life of THE FACELESS, the recording process and my little world at Keene Machine Studios. We hope you enjoy it as much as we do."

THE FACELESS is scheduled to headline the Sumerian showcase during the South By Southwest (SXSW) at Emo's Annex in Austin, Texas on March 16 with VEIL OF MAYA, ANIMALS AS LEADERS and UPON A BURNING BODY.

I could have sworn I read they entered the studio in January, but I also may be thinking of Decapitated or a band whose also on Summerian Records.

2008's Planetary Duality = huge disappointment. Get rid of those digitized/Cynic-wannabe vocals and do something cool/original, or at least go back to where things really worked on their debut record Akeldama.

The Faceless are among the most talented Tech/Death bands still around, they easily could do their best work on this 3rd record of theirs. With a March studio recording schedule, it's probably looking like a late Summer/Early Fall release.

Ian Anderson:Thick as a Brick Tour 2012!

tull homepage link

Ian Anderson Announces the Thick As A Brick Tours for 2012.
Ian Anderson performs Thick As A Brick in its entirety for the first time since 1972, going out for a world tour commencing in the UK in Mid-April. Then, it's on to European countries in the late SprThick as a Brick Live Tour 2012ing and Summer before landing in the USA for two tours spanning September, October and early November.
This tour will feature a more theatrical production with video, additional musicians and a troupe of dancing elephants. (Just kidding about the dancing elephants: they don't dance.,...)
In 1972, Ian wrote the music (and the lyrics which were credited at the time to the fictitious character, 8 year-old Gerald Bostock, whose parents lied about his age) and recorded with Jethro Tull, Thick As A Brick. The record became a number one Billboard album and enjoyed huge commercial success in most countries of the world. The album featured only one song, lasting nearly 45 minutes. To accommodate the album on LP vinyl and cassette, the seamless track was split on both sides of the record. It reached number one on the US Billboard Pop Albums chart.

Tull then dutifully took the somewhat theatrical show on the road in the Great Britain, USA, and other world markets.

Since 1972, the album has never been performed in its entirety although a few minutes of the material have been a regular repertoire staple in both Tull and IA solo shows over the years.

Now, scheduled for performance again in 2012, Ian will take the original album to a theatre near you. It will be performed in its entirety in a theatrical setting with band, and additional guests.

Well this past Summer (2011), Tull did the complete Aqualung live, which I missed unfortunately (but saw The Book of Right On and Zebulon Pike instead at least). But while I like Aqualung, Thick as a Brick is a bloody fucking masterpiece to me, my favorite Tull record, and one of my favorite records of all-time. So this very much will seem to mean a lot more to me.

Ticket prices? who knows, but given it's not the actual "Jethro Tull" name, the cost very easily could be less. Regardless, as long as there's a show in Minnesota (Fitzgerald, Orpheum, State or somewhere else), and I don't have another conflict, I certainly plan to see this.

A bump hopefully will come once the dates are announced.

Friday, August 26, 2011

St.Vincent - Strange Mercy (2011)

8/26/11 6:10AM-7:00PM

"Hey Everyone - going to be on the Late Show with David Letterman this Monday night!"

new video for "Cruel"

7/14/11 5:00AM - 9:25PM, 7/22/11 3:30PM Click on the "Surgeon" link below to hear and/or download said new track.


Track listing

1. Chloe in the Afternoon
2. Cruel
3. Cheerleader
4. Surgeon
5. Northern Lights
6. Strange Mercy
7. Neutered Fruit
8. Champagne Year
9. Dilettante
10. Hysterical Strength

8/25 – New York, NY — Metropolitan Museum of Art
10/2 – Minneapolis, MN — McGuire Theatre
10/3 – Milwaukee, WI — Pabst Theater
10/5 – Chicago, IL — Metro
10/6 – St. Louis, MO — Old Rock House
10/7 – Lawrence, KS — Liberty Hall
10/8 – Boulder, CO — Boulder Theater
10/10 – Salt Lake City, UT — Urban Lounge
10/12 – Vancouver, BC — Commodore Ballroom
10/13 – Seattle, WA — Neptune Theatre
10/14 – Portland, OR — Crystal Ballroom
10/18 – Los Angeles, CA — Music Box
10/20 – Phoenix, AZ — Crescent Ballroom
10/23 – Dallas, TX — Kessler Theater
10/24 – Austin, TX — Moody Theater at ACL Live
10/25 – Houston, TX — Fitzgerald’s
10/28 – Atlanta, GA — The EARL
10/30 – Charlottesville, VA — Jefferson Theater
11/1 – Washington, DC — 9:30 Club
11/2 – Philadelphia, PA — Union Transfer
11/3 – New York, NY — Webster Hall
11/4 – Boston, MA — Royale

6/2/11 11:32AM


St. Vincent, the nom-de-stage of Annie Clark, has confirmed the release of new album Strange Mercy, on 12th September. Having worked together on 2009's Actor, Clark reunited with producer John Congleton, recording the album in her hometown of Dallas, TX at Elmwood Studios. The 11 new tracks showcase Clark's inimitable gift for melody, packing elegant arrangements with hefty emotional punches. Clark's virtuosity has long been recognised, and Strange Mercy finds her redefining the idea of the guitar hero, utilizing the instrument as a pointillist artist might wield a brush. On 'Cruel' she elicits punchy bursts like an R&B horn section. 'Cheerleader' froths and boils, with deep and fuzzy guitars bubbling up to the surface, while 'Surgeon' twirls about endlessly, Clark's vocals dancing amid a blizzard of notes. Strange Mercy isn't an entirely solitary affair either, with Clark joined by a host of other musicians. Included among them are Beck keyboardist and musical director Brian LeBarton, Grammy Award winning musician Bobby Sparks on mini Moog, clavinet, Arp and Wurlitzer, Midlake’s MacKenzie Smith on drums, Daniel Hart on violin, Evan Smith on woodwinds and Phil Palazzolo. Since the release of her 2009 album Actor, which debuted on the Billboard Top 200, Clark has collaborated with some of the biggest names in indie music. She recorded with Bon Iver's Justin Vernon for the Twilight soundtrack, had her song 'The Strangers' sampled by Kid Cudi (who she later performed with), and has been working with David Byrne on a forthcoming project. More recently, just last month she blew away a sold-out New York crowd at Michael Azerrad's "Our Concert Could Be Your Life", with a performance of Big Black's 'Kerosene', which the NME described as "a revelation of biblical proportions". Watch her performance below.

Actor was rather disappointing and pretty overrated to be honest. Although it had some moments, time has proved her 2007 debut record Marry Me to be superior. But that write-up intrigues me. She needs to show her chops and also do something different. Her live shows do slay her 2 studio albums no matter, and the Actor stuff was better live.

So, September 13th (or sooner) we'll find out if her studio work will take the leap.

The Reign of Kindo welcomed by Brazil

8/24/11 5:23PM - 8/26/11 2:01PM
Check out this update. I suppose their next album could somehow make it out in 2011 afterall. If not, likely the 1st quarter of 2012.

facebook update

we've been individually and/or together demoing for the new cd... and pretty unbelievably excited about it so far. but this week was the final straw. danny was inspired by all the stories/pictures/videos of the brazil trip, and sent an idea that literally made me scream. a lot. at babies. many babies. so that's it, we're done waiting. time to start recording the next album. -s

niice. Now hopefully they will find their way out to my home in MINNESOTA soon.

Also, the quality isn't too great, but there's a few videos from their show in July DVD show on Youtube. When that's released? my guess would be 1st quarter of 2011.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

The Dear Hunter - PacSun Fall Tour with Manchester Orchestra

From the latest The Dear Hunter newsletter

Ladies and Gentlemen,

We are ecstatic to finally announce our fall United States tour schedule! We will be hitting the road as part of the Pacsun Tour with the fine musicians in Manchester Orchestra, White Denim and Little Hurricane. Thrice, La Dispute, Moving Mountains and O’Brother will also be joining us for one show in Magna, Utah.
We can’t wait to get back out there and hope to see you all when we come through your town!

Check out the tour dates below and Click Here to Pre-Order Your Tickets!
Tour Dates, Venues, & Cities
10/21/11 Warehouse Live-Houston, TX
10/22/11 Stubb’s BBQ-Austin, TX
10/23/11 The Palladium Ballroom-Dallas, TX
10/25/11 Rialto Theatre-Tucson, AZ
10/26/11 House of Blues-San Diego, CA
10/28/11 The Regency Ballroom-San Francisco, CA
10/29/11 Wonder Ballroom-Portland, OR
11/01/11 Saltair-Magna,Ut W/Thrice, La dispute, O’Brother, Moving Mountains, Manchester Orchestra, White Denim
11/02/11 The Summit Hall-Denver,CO
11/04/11 Bourbon Theatre-Lincoln, NE
11/05/11 Cabooze on the West Bank-Minneapolis, MN
11/07/11 House of Blues-Chicago, IL
11/08/11 Clutch’s Cargo-Pontiac, MI
11/09/11 Club Zoo-Pittsburgh, PA
11/11/11 Electric Factory-Philadelphia, PA
11/12/11 House of Blues-Boston, MA
11/13/11 Wellmont Theatre-Montclair, NJ
11/14/11 9:30 Club-Washington, DC
11/16/11 The National-Richmond, VA
11/17/11 Cat’s Cradle-Carrboro, NC
11/18/11 Amo’s Southend Music Hall-Charlotte, NC
11/19/11 Cannery Ballroom-Nashville, TN
11/21/11 Revolution-Ft Lauderdale, FL
11/22/11 House of Blue-Lake Buena Vista, FL

Have you purchased The Color Spectrum album yet? No? What are you waiting for!?

The good: we got a date, November 5th.

The bad: it's not at The Varsity Theater. And frankly, The Cabooze, while not my least favorite venue, is definitely not high on my list. The dredg show there last November kind of supported that. Although I've seen some other, better shows there like House of Fools. Rafael Saddique I'll admit wasn't bad, but still, seeing those acts at The Varsity or The Cedar would be much more preferable. Although I guess after the Fair to Midland show, perhaps any venue is more desirable than Station 4.

The Unknown: Manchester Orchestra I've known about for years, and recall hearing a few songs off and on, but not really caring for them. I recall they were kind of in your Scenester/Emo vein. Although I do like the couple of songs with their singer on The Color Spectrum, so the odds of seeing those tunes live add something. White Denim someone added to the New Prog list recently in Wikipedia. I did sample a song or 2 from them, and thought they were okay. But I can't be sure at this point what I think of them.

The other obvious thing is the Lifetime Membership. If TDH aren't headlining, I guess only 5 spots are available. I just sent in my email, so the odds are pretty good I'm 1 of the 1st 5. But of course there's no guarantee they will receive it based on the experience in June/July for the headlining show. But we'll see. Worst case scenario, I walk up with my laminate and mention the guest list thing and I'll be allowed in.

Umphrey's McGee - Death By Stereo (2011)

8/24/11 11:17AM

1. Miami Virtue 3:49
2. Domino Theory 3:47
3. Search 4 6:18
4. Booth Love 3:39
5. The Floor 5:30
6. Wellwishers 4:52
7. Dim Sun 1:51
8. Conduit 4:11
9. Deeper 3:51
10. Hajimemashite 3:46

Bonus Tracks
11. We Believe
12. Go To Hell
13. Keefer
go here for more details about Pre-Orders and a download of "Miami Virtue"

7/7/11 11:59PM post

Hot Dates and a New Album

—Thu, Jul 7th, 2011
We have a few big announcements we wanted to share with you today!

Our new album "Death By Stereo" is officially coming your way September 13th. Loads of details coming at you shortly including track listing, cover art & pre order info. We are pretty jazzed about this one - we think you will be too.

Bring this bad boy on! 2009's Mantis is outstanding, and a record I still put on some 2 1/2 years later. Live? that's another story, but I'm very much looking forward to another album from these guys. Let's see if they can even come close to matching Mantis.

And coming on September 13th as well, like Dream Theater, Arch/Matheos and St.Vincent. And the week before Opeth and possibly Steven Wilson.

East of the Wall - The Apologist (2011) (1.0)

8/24/11 6:05AM

Here's a nice sample of "Whiskey Sipper." Uh, I'm liking this, and not hearing the cymbals clip. Good sign?

8/18/11 1:44PM

Facebook announcement

drop date is October 25th.

3/12/11 11:14PM

east of the wall's homepage

March 11th, 2011
EAST OF THE WALL Announce Recording Plans For New Album

EAST OF THE WALL is extremely excited to announce that they will enter the studio on May 8th to begin work on their next record, The Apologist. The New Jersey-based technical metal unit will be recording at Translator Audio in Brooklyn, New York with Andrew Schneider, renowned for his work with Cave In, Pelican, Keelhaul, Unsane, Rosetta, City of Ships, Made Out of Babies and many others.

The tentative track listing for The Apologist is as follows:

“False Build”
“Linear Failure”
“My Favorite Society Guy”
“Precious Memories”
“The Apologist”
“Running Tab of Sweetness”
“Horseback Riding In A Bicycle World”
“A Functional Tumor”
“Nurser of Small Hurts”
“Whiskey Sipper”

The Apologist will be released this fall by Translation Loss Records, as with their acclaimed previous album, 2010’s Ressentiment. EAST OF THE WALL will be supporting the record with extensive touring.

In addition, Ressentiment, will be released on vinyl in Europe on March 11th, via Germany’s I.Corrupt.Records. Preorders for American import copies are currently being taken at the band’s official website:

EAST OF THE WALL upcoming shows:
3/24/2011 Union Pool – Brooklyn, NY w/ Meek Is Murder (record release show) and Wizardry
4/02/2011 Dingbatz – Clifton, NJ (Jay Sica benefit) w/ Abacinate, The Binary Code, Fit for An Autopsy, Sydbarret, The Ghost In Black and White, many more

Stay tuned for continuous updates on the band’s live actions as well as updates on the upcoming album. Contact Earsplit PR for all press requests for EAST OF THE WALL.
- East Of The Wall

While their follow-up record (in a way), 2010's Ressentiment, I didn't care for, I am still certainly interested to hear this. 2008's Farmer's Almanac is one of the best instrumental/heavy post/prog-rock albums in recent years. Ressentiment did have vocals on it, which actually, I recall wasn't really an issue I had with it. The highly compressed cymbal mixes/masters are largely what made me struggle to get through it. I remember trying twice to play it, and it was almost painful. I forced myself to partly due to the fact they were playing a concert in town soon after hearing it. And partially due to how much I enjoyed Farmer's Almanac.

And at that show last Summer, which was a last-minute booking at Tarnish & Gold, which I sadly arrived too late to see them, I got to chat with 1 or more of the members, and I recall them not denying the production issues. They were cool guys anyway. But believing them following my take on their last album, I hope those compression issues on the cymbals will not be evident again with this next record The Apologist, and is one I and many others will enjoy.

The other thing about Ressentiment was how it was a collection of old demos re-recorded I guess, whereas this new album is ALL NEW music which gives more reason for optimism. They're really more of a "band" now, as opposed to before being members of 3 different projects (Postman Syndrome, Day Without Dawn, and Biclops)

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Team Me - TBA (2011)

no time for lengthly details, but this Norweigan band's debut EP Team Me EP, came out earlier this year, and I've enjoyed a bit over the last few weeks, amongst a handful of good new bands to me (Typhoon, Gotye, The Minor Canon).

Their music is kind of a mix of pop, dreamy psych and textured rock. I guess when this full length comes out, that style might be more clear. They remind me a bit of Early Ghost and some other layered Pop bands from Europe.

I didn't expect a full-length this soon from them, but actually in some ways I'm not surprised, as often when an EP is released, it's just a fraction of the music that was written at that time.

Now will they become Hipster and will Hip4K grab onto them and fuck with how they are promoted? hopefully not.


Monday, August 22, 2011

Vuvuzela - TBA (2011)

8/11/11 12:35AM - 8/16/11 4:30AM, 8/22/11 12:28PM

Kickstarter campaign is a Success! Sometimes, you can't be sure how unlikely $ may come in, even down the stretch. Can't frigging wait to hear their ep.

See the page

$2,190 and there's still about 34 hours to go!

an updated video from the other day. 7 days left and about $1600 to go. Odds?

I guess I'm not sure if I understand the thinking or projections for some of these Kickstarter campaigns. The amount of $ I get, at least to a point. But the AMOUNT OF TIME I rarely follow. $2,100, while not an outrageous amount, in a few weeks or even a month, really is a bit high for such a short window of time. I suppose had they mentioned the kickstarter thing many times over the last few months, and then launched it on August 1st or whatever date they did recently, at least the pre-campaign campaign would have been done.

A few other campaigns that I tried to help out, that failed, ran into the same problem. Now one of them being Water & Bodies album, ended up being relaunched and lowering the goal, and was successful the 2nd time around. Perhaps if this initial Vuvuzela Kickstarter campaign isn't successful, they'll try again like Water & Bodies and have success the 2nd time around.

But in the mean time, perhaps a lot more help will come in down the stretch here over the next week. I guess we'll see.

just pledged $25 to their campaign. 5-8 songs they want to start recording on August 24th. They need $2,150 to reach their goal by the end of the 23rd. I hope a lot of the Kiss Kiss fans find out about this SOON.

4/19/11 10:59PM

Assuming they reach their goal for the campaign, this should have a chance to come out this year. New songs sound nice.

Related: Vuvuzela - (Kiss Kiss's Josh and James new project)

Friday, August 19, 2011

Gotye - Making Mirrors (2011)

In just reading a topic on 1 forum I go to regularly, I noticed a lot of discussion about this song "Somebody I Used to Know" (featuring Kimbra) and this guy, who goes by the solo moniker Gotye. Which I want-to, and may always pronounced "Got-ya" but I guess it's pronounced "Gore-ti-yeah" lol.

Today I checked out Gore-tih-yeah's last album from 2006 Like Drawing Blood and liked a fair amount of it. Although I'm not sure how much he plays, and what is sampled or programmed. Namely the drums. But regardless, many good tunes on it, some instrumentals and cool sound clips from things. Almost reminding me of artists like DJ Shadow or even Stateless a bit. But also music like Peter Gabriel (an obvious, almost blatant comparison), Imogen Heap and maybe even George Michael on one or two tracks.

So, now as I'm home on a Friday afternoon, I'm checking out this new record of his, which I may not find to be as good as his last record, but I'm so new to his music, that's pretty unclear right now.

But I can say, that single is receiving a lot of praise, and frankly, for good reason. The lyrics and vocal lines especially are ear-worm worthy, and relate-able. It may end up as one of the best songs of 2011.

oh and also Karnivool, of all bands, covered one of his songs off Like Drawing Blood, "The Only Way" clipping cymbals and all. Not all that surprising though, given Ian Kenny of Karnivool also is in the more pop-oriented band Birds of Tokyo.

Russian Circles - Empros (2011)

sputnik news story

Chicago post-rock trio Russian Circles will release their fourth album, Empros, on October 25.

The album was produced by Brandon Curtis, who manned the decks for Russian Circle the group's 2009 release, Geneva.

1. 39
2. Mladek
3. Schipol
4. Atackla
5. Batu
6. Praise Be Man

blah, dunno if I even mentioned their upcoming album recently, but if not, here's some of the info. Last time I was thinking about them, was how Geneva was their 2nd attempt to follow-up Enter their great debut record, and more or less failing to do so.

I guess at some point, I won't expect much great work from them. They're a lot like a band like Zero Hour in that sense, 1 great record, a band member then leaves, and they put out many records after that don't really capture even close to the level of that breath-of-fresh-air debut album.

But as someone whose found a reasonable list of other "post" bands I enjoy really since discovering these guys in 2006, I'm just kind of impartial to what they do. If this album is better than their last 2, well, I might begin to start believing in them again. But my expectation level is not all that high here, which probably is the safest approach at this point for myself.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Dream Theater - A Dramatic Turn of Events (2011)

8/17/11 1:17AM

Petrucci and LaBrie breaking down the album:

6/29/11 11:44AM

1 On the Backs of Angels
2 Build Me Up, Break Me Down
3 Lost Not Forgotten
4 This is the Life
5 The Shaman's Trance
6 Outcry
7 Far From Heaven
8 Breaking All Illusions
9 Beneath the Surface

new song/single "On the Backs of Angels" and cover art.

I haven't heard it yet obviously. From many of the comments, I'm pretty curious, but still not expecting my jaw to drop or anything. The comments online are comparing it to oldschool Dream Theater, Six Degrees, Falling Into Infinity and Awake. And I guess there is piano, audible bass guitar, and not any solos that over extend their welcome.

I guess I'll know later today, whether that linkg is pulled or not.

The cover art is nothing amazing, but not terrible. But cover art rarely means a ton to me anyway.

a few more words about the album from Petrucci in this viedeo.

1 On the Backs of Angels
2 Build Me Up, Break Me Down
3 Lost Not Forgotten
4 This is the Life
5 The Shaman's Trance
6 Outcry
7 Far From Heaven
8 Breaking All Illusions
9 Beneath the Surface

edits are pending...

September 13th is in fact the official release date.

RoadRunner press release

Progressive titans Dream Theater have announced the title/release date of their new album. Check out the press release!

(New York, NY): The recent announcement that Mike Mangini would be joining Dream Theater, replacing departed drummer Mike Portnoy caused such fanfare that Mangini was a trending topic on Twitter, second only to England's Royal Wedding. Now, the band is revealing more information about their upcoming album. The new album is titled A Dramatic Turn of Events. The much-anticipated platter, which marks Mangini's recorded debut, will be released via Roadrunner Records on September 13th and will be supported by a massive world tour.

"I'm incredibly psyched with the way this album came out and can't wait to share it with everybody," guitarist John Petrucci, who also serves as the producer for A Dramatic Turn of Events, said. "We are currently in the mix stage with the great Andy Wallace and it's all sounding amazing!"

"We have poured our hearts and minds into the creation of this album," keyboardist Jordan Rudess offered. "All the life changing events that surrounded us before, as well as during the whole process, fueled our desire to dig deep within ourselves and create the best music we possibly could."

Vocalist James LaBrie said, "In the grand scheme of Dream Theater's career, the last several months have been such an incredibly positive, fulfilling and rewarding experience. The new songs and sound has never been so spirited or rejuvenating. I cannot wait for every one of our fans to sink their audio senses into this batch of tunes."

My take is, it's a title, so what? The music itself will determine how good or bad it is of course. But the criticism on so many of the forums over the title and even song names is pretty much to be expected. "Haters gonna hate" a cliche. I hope in a few years that phrase does fade, but it is relevant in the days of web meme-ing and internet trolling everywhere.

I guess the cover art and more info about it should be posted soon (like later today 6/8/11) in fact.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Jonas Bjerre - Songs and Music from the Movie Skyscraper (2011)

1. Colours 1:24
2. Waste It 4:03
3. The Story of a Would-be Traffic Light 4:53
4. Kids Don't Fight 2:43
5. Twins 0:53
6. Fireflies In Central Park 1:01
7. Until Tomorrow Finds You 4:56
8. Picking Up All the Oranges 0:59
9. Edith 1:58
10. Like Something Out of a Dream 0:34
11. Ben & Jon 1:31
12. Running 2:56
13. Spill the Beans 2:29
14. In a Small Town 1:34
15. There's a Cloud In My Brain 3:19
16. Squirrel Made Safe 1:44
17. Jon's Window Pane Daydream 2:48
18. Colours (slide Version) 1:25

it appears a sample/percentage of the songs are available to stream here or just use this

It's not Mew obviously, but some of it sounds like music that could grow.

Monday, August 15, 2011

The Age of Rockets Album Update

8/15/11 12:32AM

This was sent directly to those who are part of the successful Kickstarter campaign. The samples I've heard since the last update still sound awfully promising, and the progress, certainly reasonable. I am looking forward to getting to hear it around X-Mas or early in 2012. I just hope Andrew doesn't have to bend over backwards after facing the changes in recording time crunch (along with that 1 backer who apparently *backed out*).

But to expect it as part of the 2011 Index probably pretty unlikely now. So be it, here we may have the early leader for 2012 for that reason.

The Age of Rockets
Monday Aug 15, 12:06am EDT

Here is a long update on album progress. It's difficult for me to properly explain some things, so I hope you will not be offended at some of the vagueness. Due to some unforeseen circumstances, the album ended up falling 100% into my lap. Saul, Bess and Adam will be a part the record, but not nearly as much as originally planned. This bummed me out for a while, but it is what it is, you know? I took a small break from recording while I produced the most recent mc chris record, but that is done and I am hoping to finish up the basic recording of the record by the end of November. The first disc is just missing vocals, one track of cello and a few electric guitars. Not including vocals, it will be done by mid-September and then the rest should be far easier and quicker.

Disc one is the "over the top orchestra record", and while it's one out of three discs, it was 50% of the total time and work the album needed. I am hesitant to give an exact release date because some final lyrics are not done and I am just beginning to work out artwork & things like that, but I would like to think that you Kickstarter backers will have the full three-disc album by Christmas. The goal is for you to be sick of it by the time it's actually released.

Not really.

Certainly if it's not completely done by Christmas it will be done soon after that, and by mid-Autumn you will surely have another big update on the progress.

While it pains me greatly to acknowledge the haters, I must address what Kickstarter backer Mike Finkel angrily said on the comments section today. I will gladly give him his money back and have his name appear nowhere on this project because he addressed his concerns in a totally inappropriate way, but he is right about there needing to be more updates. You all deserve that.

As always, you can hear some clips of the new record on and see how things are coming along on my blog. You can always message me on Facebook if you have any specific questions or concerns. I love talking to you guys and I hope you know that you can always reach out to me.

I really, really appreciate all the people who took to the comments section of the Kickstarter project and defended me and this record. It warms my heart to know how patient you all are and that you have my back against mean-spirited people. While I am sure this won't be the last Age of Rockets record, I am wary of doing anything else after it because I don't know how to top it. I am truly excited about this album and I can't wait for you all to hear it.

Additionally, I am going to record disc three alone in a cabin in the woods in the late Fall for a week. I think I am going to document it because it will probably be spooky and there is no interent there, so I will need a camera to talk to/go insane The Shining-style at. If that sounds at all interesting I'll send you guys the results.

Thank you again for everything you've all done for me. Knowing that people truly believe in something I care about so much is all I could ever hope for.

Much love,
Andrew Futral

4/21/11 8:31AM
a couple of bits:

4/20/11 Facebook post
sneak peek clip of a new song
still missing vox and cello

SNEAK PEEK by theageofrockets

sounds a bit like Kiss Kiss, which is a good thing.

Holy shit. Disc 1 is going to be hard to beat. Nothing like a 16 piece string section to make an album feel like the end of the world!

all violins for disc 1 are done. Disc 1 might actually be done this month.

Good to read about progress. Whether it'll be done and available in 2011 is still up in the air tho.

12/1/10 1:28AM

By The Age of Rockets For Backers Only

Hey guys and gals,

some of you recently and kindly have asked for an update on this album. I will totally give you one. I have been working with all of my free-time to get this sucker done. I decided to tackle this album 1 disc at a time. So far I am extremely happy with the progress. Currently there is about 2-3 more days of guitar tracking for the 1st disc and then all of the strings and horns and then i will move on to disc 3 (disc 2 will be recorded last) . As some of you may or may not know Hannah was made mostly by myself. Saul, Adam and Bess did vocals but only helped on The End of Faith and Actors/Ghosts. I am thrilled with how that record came out but I really want the whole band to be part of this record and so that means it will take a little longer (as they are all doing their own musical things all over the place). The end product will also be a little better. The concepts behind the discs are: Disc 1 is the over the top disc, meaning that it will be huge and loud and have giant orchestras everywhere. Disc 2 will be the subtle album. It will be full band as well but will be made with a "less is more" attitude. Disc 3 will be the weird album. It will kind of be like If I made "The Drive Home" now. The concept behind disc 3 is that songs will be recorded for the sake of a weird idea more than for the sake of the song. For example one idea is that there is a song that I am going to learn how to play backwards, record backwards, then reverse and record some additional stuff on top of it so that the whole thing sounds like a reversed track but also sounds 100% correct. Something like that totally excites me as a person but I would never have the balls to actually release it if it were just 1 disc. Disc 1 so far has been pretty much arranged by just me and Adam. Disc 2 will be much more collaborative and I am hoping disc 3 will have tons of friends on it.

If you want to hear any clips from songs you should follow the official age of rockets webpage / blog at i have been posting lots of recording things there. The album is going to (hopefully) be done by the late spring and around that time I am going to start to deal with kickstarter prizes. A lot of the prizes are musical things and I would really like it if all my creative energy was spent on 1 thing at a time.

I am really excited for everyone to hear this new record / new direction.

thanks so much for all of your patience.

A lot of what makes Age of Rockets special to me is that I make sure I am always "earning it". In that I have tons of other projects going on all of the time so that this record is the thing that I am working FOR. I think it makes for a better product. It keeps me passionate but also makes things take a hair longer. I am sorry I work like this BUT there will be new Field Mouse music soonish, a Lauren Zettler EP that I am producing and a bunch of other fun things.

Some of you may have seen the Favorite Day music video for Bess Rogers. I edited that footage and also helped direct it. I am about 24 hours away from launching a second kickstarter to get a camera so that I can help make music videos for age of rockets, field mouse, jenny owen youngs, weiss, and Rogers. Probably more people as well. Making videos is something that it is hard to do cheaply and so I am trying to make it be something that requires less doing. I want to make sure you all don't feel weird about me launching a second kickstarter. This will in no way slow down kickstarter 1 or album 3 progress and will only add to the amount of fun things I am able to do.


I care about you all.
also if we are not currently facebook friends we should be


- Andrew

Okay, so reading about this, obviously the best news is it's coming along and let's hope it actually is released next Spring or Summer ("late Spring" unless it's a digital download, probably means Summer with printing, promotion, etc) sometime. On the surface, the 3 cds on this "super-pretentious choose-your-own-adventure-style concept record"

-the 1st CD is the meat for me. That's The Age of Rockets I would assume that will resemble the work to a point from 2008's Hannah.

-The 2nd more subtle, "less is more" sounds to be good as a blending. Perhaps in the whole mixing of songs off each record together, etc..maybe a little like The River Empires: Epilogue, the last dredg album, or of course The Dear Hunter Act III in some ways. Who knows.

-And the 3rd disc it sounds like is out of left-field a bit. That one may make or break just how unique this record really is. That's the "avant-garde" or actual "experimental" side to this thing. Sort of the maudlin of the Well, Deerhoof approach in some ways.

So now thinking about this, I can say I'm probably as, if not more intrigued. But the proof will be in the pudding. It could end up disappointing, but I'd rather that happen than it never happen at all of course.

edit: of course it's mentioned in that update about sound clips being up.

um, wow. This stuff sounds potentially awesome! the most recent clip marching piece "Darling Street (Unmixed Clip)" namely...Fuck, I wish I had known about these clips months ago when they were shared, lol. Better now than later of course.

Now Andrew has also launched a NEW kickstarter campaign for making videos I decided to put $10 towards it, in the hope/belief that it will lead to some cool things and more long-term work for him, Field Mouse (who I also donated to), and The Age of Rockets of course as well. I guess we'll see.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Sigur Rós - Inni (2011?)

embeded video removed (it kept forcing your browser to load it's actual page, i.e. going away from this page).


just passing this along. Sigur Rós, a band who I highly respect, but have never found to be addictive. Perhaps they'll make something soon I will, or just hearing this new record could change my feeling about their other work, some of which I do find pretty breathtaking (namely the documentary DVD Heima).

The Felix Culpa RIP


August 10th, 2011

To whomever is reading this,
Eight years ago we decided to be a band. Tonight we decided to stop. Whether you have been with us since the Divine Cup days in Rockford, IL or you heard us for the first time tonight, thank you. With every ounce of our four hearts, thank you. You have been the reason we were The Felix Culpa and each one of you were with us all along. For those of us in this band, it has been a life changing experience that profoundly shaped who we are as people, but seasons change and songs end. Now, we humbly ask you to be with us one last time as we celebrate the music, friendship and memories that were made along the way in a final performance in Chicago. We'll let you know the details as soon as they are available. Until then, chin up. No tears. Only from endings can new beginnings be born.

Final show info & ticketing details will be available soon at Keep checking back.


God I feel terrible in some ways about reading this. Not only are they a band I have gotten into recently with their album from 2010 Sever Your Roots, and with Pure Reason Revolution's announcement just yesterday. But I owe them/others/myself a review of Sever Your Roots still. Plus I talked to 1 of the members whom I'm blanking on at this time, I talked to and told him about this blog. And he was genuinely interested. But I mentioned to him about As Tall As Lions and band breakups and things, and how I hope they don't.

WTF..that's almost like when I talked to 1 of the twins from School of Seven Bells about Warpaint and the industry last year; she then goes ahead and leaves the band in the middle of the tour.

Do I curse these bands/people? or is it pure coincidence? I would think I have NOTHING to do with it, but somehow, in the back of my mind, I can't help but wonder.

Fuck I'm sorry :(. But also at some point, I am going to expect band after band to breakup. It's going to happen every month probably. I really hope it's for the best.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Annuals - TBA (2011 or 2012?)

8/3/11 11:35AM - 8/10/11 8:05PM

facebook post

new song "Bother" there, posted on Sunday actually (I know I'm a few days late)

Facebook Post

Good news! Recording will be done in 2 weeks!!!! Look out for a new tune by weeks end!

So, this is just early info, but I'm pretty excited to hear their next work. 2010's Sweet Sister has some *sweet* tunes on it, as well as both of their full lengths, 2008's Such Fun and 2006's Be He Me and their other releases.

I'll try and elaborate more now or when the next info (song upload?) is available to pass along.

Warpaint - The Fool [Deluxe] (2011)

The track is mixed by Pulp bassist Steve Mackey and is a complete re-working of the original version from the band's debut EP Exquisite Corpse, produced by John Frusciante (ex-Red Hot Chili Peppers).

This new version of 'Billie Holiday' will appear on the band's deluxe album (also out on 19th Sept). The album consists of their current album The Fool, Exquisite Corpse and various remixes.

why did they have to in-effect EDIT and (what sounds like poorly) REMIX Billie Holiday? lol. Who is this Steve Mackey and what gave him the brilliant idea to do this? a friend of the bands? as that description says, he plays for the band Pulp. Yeah, I'm sure they do a lot of mixing of mellotrons in that band, lol.

This "deluxe" edition, I probably will pick up, but it reeks of another case of a record label trying to Milk something good until it becomes overdone. Something special, becomes less special.

Sometimes, it's best to just to leave things alone *shrug*

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Pure Reason Revolution BREAK UP

facebook announcement

Dear PRR peeps,

**BREAKING NEWS** For all of us PRR has been a labour of love for many years, but our individual changing circumstances necessitate its time to finish. It’s been a long & winding journey & we want to say a huge thanks to you all for the support you’ve given.

We’re so sorry that due to extenuating circumstances we are unable to perform at Moonloop Festival, Ukraine & the two Holland shows 11th &12th November.

However we have 6 final UK shows booked to enable us to say a fond farewell to you all:

23/11/2011 Nottingham, Rescue Rooms

24/11/2011 Bristol, Thekla

26/11/2011 Norwich, Arts Centre

Website B/O: 01603 660352

27/11/2011 Holmfirth, Picturedrome

28/11/2011 Glasgow, King Tuts B/O: 08444 999 990 /

Nov 30th – London, Heaven

The show will be a 2-hour performance & we’ll be playing all the chart hits from “AVO” & “Hammer & Anvil” plus the almighty zenith, “The Dark Third” in full!

Buy a ticket in advance & on the night you will have a choice of claiming a free DVD or a £5 discount on any merchandise.

Extended apologies to our fans on the continent, but the reason for solely UK shows is due to fixed time constraints.

We’ve some delectable offers at: & there’ll be further swag at the November shows.

Looking forward to seeing you in November.


blech, these things always happen at non-opportune times. I have yet to write up a memorial about Oceansize, lol. But perhaps as sad as this now is (and that is/was), this will force me to do some kind of in-depth writing about the 'Size and of course these guys as well (and others who are not broken up).

But man, Battle Circus, Silverchair, Oceansize and many others. Tis the way of the industry. These bands and the people in them (and fans of course) deserve better.. But a silver lining could be the ole not ruining their legacy. And a reunion someday.

But for now, this afternoon, this is another bitter pill to swallow. Rest In Peace guys.

MuteMath - Odd Soul (2011) (1.0)

7/18/11 11:33PM - 7/20/11 1:10AM, 8/9/11 1:51PM
Another new track "Blood Pressure" (no, haven't heard it yetof course).

cover, track list I imagine isn't far away.

Video for new title track/single

more including some kind of remix contest

6/28/11 11:31PM

"Odd Soul" due on October 4th.

6/13/11 5:47PM

A couple of songs being worked on in the studio. The 1st video in particular has me curious.

4/5/11 1:00AM

The album is finished.

"So if everything stays on course, the album should be out by September… but I’m hopeful you’ll start hearing things sooner than that.

Also, another bit of news is that back in October, our guitarist, Greg decided to leave the band. It might be a complete surprise to some, I know to others it’s not, but there were a lot of reasons that have been building up to this. However, it just came down to… a change of scenery was overdue. And it seemed best to happen before we went into making another record. The last record took more of a toll on us than we ever really let on, and once it came time to do it again, it became obvious that we couldn’t. Some kind of change had to happen. The split was certainly amicable and there are no hard feelings. We’re grateful for all the years Greg spent with us and wish him all the best."

2/2/11 11:04PM

This is I'm sure the 1st of 2 or 3 different entries referring to said untitled (and unfinished right now) album from these guys. But I think it's significant enough to post on its own already.

I will say, the live cd/dvd Armistice Live from 2010 didn't do a ton for me. For one, the cymbals clipped constantly on it. But I also think the live tracks on the re-release of the Self-Titled record were better. I'm not sure what that may mean for this upcoming record of theirs. 2009's Armistice is a pretty good record, regardless of the fact many fans didn't care for it as much as the S/T debut album from 2006. But, it's good to read the time frame between that record and this 3rd LP is shorter. Hopefully it won't sound like it was rushed or anything. But those answers will only be known in due time of course.

twitter/facebook post on 2/2/11

Slowly moving out of the perspiration stage into the sense of accomplishment stage. New record is getting close!

Mercies - Three Thousand Days (2011)

1. Questions 3:41
2. Sleep 3:18
3. Animals 5:04
4. Birds of Prey 4:09
5. Clouds 3:03
6. Tortured Souls 6:36
7. In My Mind 4:29
8. Stranger 2:12
9. Roads 4:27
10. Call or Write 4:28

released today (August 9th, 2011), from members and ex-members of The Dear Hunter. I was rather impressed by it. Less is more, but not bland. Poppy, in a The Dear Hunter way in some respects. Their singer sounds a little bit like the lead singer from Other Lives/Kunek, but maybe with a little more energy.

Power-Pop and experimental/layered Power-Pop fans will want to hear this.


Bed of Stars - Nothing Left to Lose [Single/MP3] (2011)

This is I guess the 1st single Bed of Stars aka Evan Konrad is releasing for the upcoming debut EP. Nice tune. I am not clear on where the download link may be on the Bed of Stars bandcamp. I thought I saw Evan or Daniel Victor post an Itunes link as well, but I don't see it at this time. Moot point anyway for me given I don't buy from Itunes.

Evan is seemingly one of the best young/up and coming singer/songwriters, and I say that not hearing a ton of music from him, but I trust receiving attention from Daniel Victor of Neverending White Lights, and the influence Jimmy Gnecco has had on him, I have reason to be curious.

I know he and Daniel have worked rather hard on both this music and the coming NWL record, and I am banking/believing it'll all pay off soon. This 1st track I can say already supports that. More people should give it a listen to find out.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Whale Music (1994)


Maury Chaykin and Cynthia Preston star in this little seen dramatic gem from 1994, that I guess is highly similar, if not almost directly influenced by Brian Wilson of the Beach Boys.

I first heard about this here and ever since then I've been rather curious to see it.

Chaykin plays a gold and platinum selling songwriter, like Wilson, whose brother (Paul Gross) died many years before the movie takes place in a slightly mysterious incident with his car driving off of a cliff on or near Chaykin's estate, which is located on or near an Ocean (the Pacific?).

Throughout the movie, Chaykin's character Desmond (or "Des") Howl is visited (well, maybe best described as traumatized) by memories and the spirit of his dead brother Daniel. Daniel had been a songwriter or at least musician in the same pop band with Des.

Early on in the movie, a young woman named Claire breaks in to his large, isolated estate and somehow manages to bring him slowly out of his shell. Des likes to dive, swim, and even bathe in a way, in what is referred to as a "pool" at his place. But really what it appears to be is a bit of an extensively designed dock (with a wall on at least 2 sides) off the body of water that his home is located off of.

But it's filthy; as it probably hasn't been cleaned for months if not years. But Des doesn't care (or notice?). Claire offers to clean it for him, and she ultimately cleans a lot of the rest of his home. A home that is worth a lot, including the extensive amount of recording equipment and instruments.

Des is composing and recording "whale music" with all his equipment. The music ultimately ends up being a way to connect to his brother's spirit I suppose.

Claire and Des do connect on many levels, even though they have much different backgrounds. They do have some qualities in common though, asd they both are misunderstood, and struggling to find out where their lives should go next. Both have some level of mental instability. But maybe misery loving company, or even misery finding misery leads to happiness and less unstable mental health.

Having read a bit more about this movie and Maury Chaykin specifically, it feels even more sad and maybe powerful in a way given he died last year, July 27th, almost one year to the day I purchased this DVD. He won a Genie? (or Gemini?) award for his role in this movie, which is I guess Canada's version of the Academy Awards. But also looking at his biography, he was a prolific actor, starting out in 1975, and working more or less up until the time he died. Perhaps more people will find this and his other work in the future and appreciate him.

I also can't help but think of some others in this story, of course one being the tragic tale of Kevin Gilbert. There is something to be said about brilliant artists having traumatic experiences to inspire their muse to greatness. Kevin had plenty of it, as did others. And the music in this movie is one of the best and most memorable parts of it. From the hook for Des's group song "Torque Torque, the beast needs more Torque" to the piece titled "Claire." And of course the actual *Whale Music* is both catchy, yet symphonic (or "progressive"?). I definitely would like to find a soundtrack from this sometime soon, and even just to find out all the people involved in the writing and recording (their backgrounds, etc).

Well recommended, especially for fans of Brian Wilson, The Beach Boys, Maury Chaykin, and anyone who knows about misunderstood artists stories.

Diablo Swing Orchestra - TBA (2012)

facebook post

given they were talking about their next album coming this year, maybe as far back as last Summer, it's good to receive a more realistic and up-to-date projection. Their last record Sing Along Songs for the Damned & Delirious is rather good, so this is something, I for one, want to know about when it's coming.

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Mastodon - The Hunter (2011)

7/7/11 4:16PM - 8/6/11 2:04AM

Cover art + Track List:

1 Black Tongue
2 Curl of the Burl
3 Blasteroid
4 Stargasm
5 Octopus Has No Friends
6 All the Heavy Lifting
7 The Hunter
8 Dry Bone Valley
9 Thickening
10 Creature Lives
11 Spectrelight
12 Bedazzled Fingernails
13 The Sparrow

6/10/11 6:27PM
b-mouth link

a title that does go with their others certainly.

There's a video interview there where 2 of the members talk about it, that I'm not finding an embed code for.

5/28/11 9:54AM article

After two years of touring behind Mastodon's prog-metal epic Crack the Skye, guitarist Brent Hinds is gearing up for a big return this year: The heavily tatted frontman has worked up two records with his side-projects West End Motel and Fiend Without a Face — and is putting the finishing touches on Mastodon's fifth album, due out later this year.

"It's very close," he tells SPIN of the Mastodon LP. "I have two guitar solos left to record, and one or two vocal parts and a couple of keyboards and that's it."
For the follow-up to Skye — a loose concept album about Tsarist Russia that remains Mastodon's highest-charting album yet — Hinds, bassist Troy Sanders, guitarist Bill Kelliher, and drummer Brann Dailor are getting back to basics.

"Blood Mountain and Crack the Skye — those albums took too long to make," says Hinds. "This only took us a couple weeks to record and there's a totally different feeling to it. It's a jump-on-your-bed, get naked, and go streaking kind of record. I haven't had this feeling about a Mastodon record since [2004's] Leviathan. It's just fucking awesome.

"We've got a song about fighting, there's a song about lifting heavy stuff, there's a song about people on meth creeping around in trees trying to get the best wood grain out of a tree to sell it at Lowe's for [drug] money... The album is kind of silly. We're taking the piss out of things."

Of the final tracks, produced by Mike Elizondo (Fiona Apple, Eminem), Hinds is particularly stoked for "Blasteroids," which he calls "pretty spastic and fun and bouncy," as well as "All the Heavy Lifting," which is a sludgy tribute of sorts to one of the group's favorite metal bands. "It kind of sounds like Neurosis, with that evil, minor, creepy sounding stuff.

Still, the album won't be totally "silly" — it will also include reflections on personal tragedies the band has undergone over the last year. For "The Sparrow," Hinds penned a tribute to his brother, who died unexpectedly last December while hunting. (In fact, Mastodon have two working titles for the album in honor of Brad: The Hunter or Brother.)

"Me and my family are in the phase where we've accepted it and now I'm paying homage to him," says Hinds. As for its sonic vibe, "It sounds like Zeppelin with these smooth buttery vocals and a huge Jimmy Page-style guitar solo. Me and Brann play off each other also in this sort of proggy way. There's a lot of stuff for the listener to tweak their ear to."

Prior to Mastodon's new disc, Hinds will release a double-album set on June 7 featuring his two side-projects Fiend Without a Face (his mid-90s band prior to joining Mastodon) and West End Motel. (Stream music below.) The records, which feature material that he recorded in the mid-'90s, are a welcome departure from Mastodon's thrashy, progged-out fare: Fiend Without a Face finds Hinds digging into his love of old garage rock bands like the Mummies and Mothers of Invention-era Zappa. Highlights include "Tsunami," which tips its hat to Dick Dale's twangy surf guitar, and "Get Straight," which features snatches of Devo's "Whip It." "I love '80s New Wave music and I'm a gigantic Devo fan," Hinds says. "I've got the whole Devo costume and everything."

But Hinds' music with West End Motel is far weirder — and cooler. A collaboration with his best friend (and local Atlanta musician) Tom Cheshire, the group's music sounds like Tom Waits and Tim Burton co-hosting the creepiest vaudeville show ever. Lyrically, the two offer up a deranged snapshot of American culture — many of the tunes were inspired by spontaneous freight-train trips they took years ago.
"It's all about that experience of traveling on trains and along the rails, that nomadic, once-in-a-lifetime, last hurrah kinda thing that you had," says Hinds. "Don't get me wrong. It's not like I was sum bum or anything — I had a construction job — but this is something I see kids doing all the time nowadays, and these songs are all about that experience."

But even though Mastodon are gearing up for a return, Hinds won't abandon his work with his other bands: he's hoping to plot a run of East Coast dates this summer with Fiend Without a Face, and has two more records already in the bag. "I've just been dying to get this stuff out there," he says. "And I think Mastodon fans will like it — they're open minded."

Well, my feelings about Mastodon maybe haven't been as documented as they could be in here. But I did write up this back in 2009 about

Mastodon - Crack the Skye

"The Last Baron" is awesome. And the truth is I probably enjoy more than half of this album. But I think hype and expectations hurt it. It's 3.5 stars, and many people made it out to be their best work. Sort of in the Muse-disease. They haven't gotten over the hump. Baroness made a record at a similar level this year, but I guess my expectations weren't as high for that. I also think the vocals for this band, while not all that different than Burst or Baroness stylistically, kind of stick-out like a sore thumb at times. I feel like I'm hearing dumbed-down singing to be honest. And of course to mention Burst, I would rather just listen to them instead overall. They're gone, so that idea for new music may never happen again. I think Leviathan still remains their best work, but even that I don't feel is hardly at Burst's level.

and I still feel that way, as Burst just are or were more my thing. But, I still enjoy Mastodon enough to be interested in their next work (unlike some of the shark-jumping bands, or bands who I've never got their hype, even among prog and metal fans). And Burst sadly are no more.

From the article though, this sounds like a less serious kind of writing. Maybe it'll be more Motorhead influenced or something. If it's more like Leviathan, I may get more into it as I probably consider that album my favorite still (not by any large margin mind you). But we'll see.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

dredg + The Dillinger Escape Plan Fall (2011) North American Tour?

Traversing post. As it says there, TDEP mentioned dredg early in the year on twitter, and then dredg posted something about TDEP around February. Apparently 1 date or maybe more could see the 2 of them on the bill with Between the Buried and Me (without Animals as Leaders and TesseracT).

However, this is nice and all, without a date in Minnesota, it means very little to me personally. But I would be happy for dredg to get exposed to another, different audience.

I guess when more, including dates and things come, this could be bumped.

Monday, August 1, 2011

Cloud Cult at Orchestra Hall 7/29/11

So I had been looking forward to this gig for awhile being the last *Big* show this July (The Dear Hunter last week, the week before Fair to Midland, 2 weeks before that The Monkees), except I hadn't been able to acquire a ticket. Why that was, pretty much not desiring to order one online, and failing to go down to Orchestra Hall in person before I learned of it selling out last week.

The Electric Fetus wasn't even selling tickets (unlike the show I saw last November at 1st Ave).

But I was fortunate enough to find some folks with an extra ticket, outside before the show.

Cloud Cult at Orchestra Hall. A rock band at Orchestra Hall is kind of an unusual idea, but with Cloud Cult or actually a number of bands I enjoy that include the classical or chamber instrumentation in their sound, it really doesn't sound as odd or incongruous as it sounds on the surface.

Now in one sense, it was still as for much of the show the crowd was standing and some dancing around. Something you'll see at The Cedar and many clubs like The Varsity Theater or 1st Ave. But a classical music hall, it probably doesn't happen too often.

I suppose one of the biggest things about the show was the crowd. While a high percent of the crowd were people I'd expect to see at a club show, there were most definitely many folks there who came out of curiosity and to fill their Orchestra Hall season pass lineup. This may be stereotyping a bit, but it reminded me of seeing the 70 or 80+ aged folks at Trans Siberian Orchestra. Those folks would never know or listen to Savatage, but because TSO is/has and does a Christmas-themed show, they find appeal to a wider/different demographic.

One thing Craig Minowa mentioned is how by playing at Orchestra Hall, and seeing the crowd size there, a hope (dream?) is to come back and play their with an actual orchestra.

A friend of mine wasn't too interested in going on Friday, but mentioned to me if they were with an actual orchestra, it would intrigue him more. So, perhaps the next time they will.

As far as the performance and music (and visuals), it was pretty spectacular at times. The video screen they had accompanying them added a lot visually. Many songs had videos that went with them. Some I believe are on youtube like "Everybody Here is a Cloud" and "Running With the Wolves."

The set list that's listed is frankly, pretty incomplete.

Today We Give Ourselves To The Fire
There's So Much Energy In Us
You'll Be Bright
Forces of the Unseen
Running With The Wolves
Transistor Radio
The Exploding People

I'll add/edit what I remember, maybe even later this week. But the songs I know they also played (which included in the 2 encores they did).

Everybody Here is a Cloud
Love You All
No One Said It Would Be Easy
Dance for the Dead

They also played at least 2 or 3 new songs. And I knew they were going to, having asked Sarah Ehlhardt, their keyboard/piano/trumpet/french horn/vocalist vaguely about the show. I happen to be lucky enough to be taking piano lessons from her, so I couldn't help but ask about the show last week.

I suppose to sum up this Cloud Cult show, compared to the last/1st one I saw last fall. It was probably as memorable and as much if not more of an *Event* than that other show. Although, overall it probably didn't grab me as much given it wasn't my 1st time seeing them live, nor have I been listening to Cloud Cult's music so much recently as I had been back last Fall.

Plus it was a pretty different dynamic at Orchestra Hall. I suppose the ENERGY and even the group drumming maybe wasn't quite as memorable. The paintings of course happened as they always do from Connie Minowa and Scott West. Compared to the show I saw last Fall, I guess the style and layering were the opposite, comparing the works I saw them make at the show in November. Connie's this time was much more less-is-more than Scott's. But I guess it's unpredictable and I imagine both of them don't think about that when making those paintings during the show.

Also new Cellist Daniel Zamzow was quite good, replacing longtime Cellist Sarah Young. He has good chemistry with violinist Shannon Frid. Almost to the point I forgot he was new. Although I ended up in the 4th row, to the far right of Sarah Ehlhardt, which kind of isolated those 2 and some of the rest of the band to the opposite side of the stage from me.

That was one thing I wanted to ask Sarah about, and maybe I will soon, as to why her side of the stage seemed less involved than the other. The band seemed more connected on the left side, and I almost felt bad for her. Craig came over to use the piano a few times, but other than that, she was kind of on her own on the right side. Plus as wonderful as her french horn was, it at times seemed drowned out by the strings. Perhaps that is/was intentional?

Another thing to mention is opening act Caroline Smith and the Goodnight Sleeps. I had no idea she was opening, and she mentioned she has a cd release show coming on September 16th at the 1st Ave Main Room. In short, I like her and liked seeing her back in January 2009 with Jeremy Messersmith and Best Friends Forever. But I haven't thought about her since. Save for the fact Arlen Peiffer, Cloud Cult's drummer, mentioned to me at the show last Fall, how he played with her. He wasn't on stage with her on Friday, but her opening for them probably had something to do with that connection.

Just a thought, might Jenny Dalton open for CC at some point as well? (her band has used CC's old rhythm section anyway).

But I may try and see that show in September, and am certainly going to check out her new album Little Wind.

After the show it was pretty crowded in the hallways, but I was able to say hello to Sarah, Caroline and a few other performers. And then actually stumbling upon some fans being quoted for the Star Tribune. I actually chimed in, and talked to the Strib reporters. Kind of in my typical "I have a blog like so many others, blah blah blah" and how Cloud Cult are progressive rock, and stuff about other bands like The Dear Hunter and Apes and Androids. The reporter doing the photography actually suggested I could freelance write for them or somewhere else. And that was really nice of her to say. I guess I wish I knew how to have an opportunity like that, beyond just calling Citypages or one of the other publications and suggesting it. Could it actually be that easy? I wish it was, but I suppose I'll never know unless I try.