Monthly Archives: January 2009

stephaniesid: Blurt Best Kept Secret

Latest pick of cool
artist in our ongoing collaboration with Sonicbids.

By Fred Mills

The BLURT staff put our heads (and ears) together and we
have our January pick for our Blurt/Sonicbids “Best Kept Secret“: it’s stephaniesid,
from Asheville, North Carolina, fresh from headlining their POPAsheville
festival
and currently prepping their new album for a release this spring.
According to the band, they spent “four whole days at Collapseable studio in Asheville and got the
whole new album recorded! It’s gorgeous, y’all. big, beautiful…. Lane
Bryant-style.”

Here’s what we had to say about the band’s previous record,
2007’s Grus Americanus:

Asheville-based
electro/indie rockers Stephanie’s Id are a good indication that the mountains
of Western North Carolina aren’t just for
bluegrass and folk music anymore. On the band’s third release, vocalist
Stephanie Morgan’s fierce, siren-like vocals are set against dramatic,
stripped-down piano and a pulsing vibraphone. The result falls somewhere
between Aretha Franklin soul and Björk’s hypnotic electro-pop, with a
distinctively dark, lean edge. Where the band’s name is an allusion to the
subconscious-the source of instinct and impulses-their music follows suit:
Grus is a collection of raw, emotive tracks, ranging
in style from sweet soul-jazz to the creepy drone of bands like goth-rockers
Garbage. Yet somehow, amid all of the twists and turns, from dark to light,
rebellious to sweet, Grus takes all of the distinctive personality swings, and
never missteps in identity.

We’ll have an interview with bandleader Stephanie Morgan
next week where we give you the full lowdown on the group. Also check the BLURT
radio soon as we’ll have an MP3 by the band cued up and ready to spin. Meanwhile,
check out the band’s MySpace page: www.myspace.com/stephaniesid.
And congratulations to stephaniesid: They’re one of the good ‘uns, trust us.

***

Bands, go to www.sonicbids.com/blurtonline to submit and have us review your materials for feature consideration.

>Our November Best Kept Secret: The Handcuffs, from Chicago.

>Our December Best Kept Secret: Black Swan Green, from Brooklyn

[Photo Credit: Angelique Tassistro]

Tricky Mounts Another US Tour

What, exactly, would a
“special performance” with Devo entail?

By Blurt Staff

After a September US
club tour that ushered his triumphant return to the stage, Tricky announces his most extensive US tour to
date. Kicking off in March, the
five week coast to coast trek includes a special performance with Devo at SXSW and a featured performance at the Langerado Music Festival. Select dates are on sale now.

To coincide with the tour, a digital “Puppy Toy” single with unreleased b-sides, remixes and videos for
“Puppy Toy” and “Council Estate” is set for a March 3rd release.

After the September 2008 release of his acclaimed album Knowle
West Boy
, Tricky
embarked on a mammoth nine week, nineteen country European tour that saw the
iconic British musician and his new band sell out the London Barbican and played for packed houses from Antwerp
to Zurich.
At home in the UK,
Tricky has been invited by NME
to headline three of their Awards shows in February 2009. Tricky will perform at Shockwaves NME Awards shows in Manchester, Glasgow and at London’s Shepherd’s Bush Empire on February 20th .

Tricky will
be performing songs from his entire catalog, as well as tracks from the new
album. Produced by
Tricky, Knowle West Boy is named after the urban ghetto where Tricky was raised. The
album finds Tricky
reaching into the post-punk, Two-Tone, reggae, hip hop and pure pop he grew up
adoring and twisting it all into surreal
songscapes, creating the most varied and accessible set of his career

Tour Dates:

3/2
Farmingdale, NY @ Crazy Donkey

3/3
New York, NY @
The Fillmore at Irving
Plaza

3/6
Miami, FL
@ Langerado Festival

3/7
St. Petersburg, FL @ State Theatre

3/9
Charlotte, NC @ Neighborhood Theatre

3/10
Baltimore, MD @ Ram’s Head Live

3/11
Boston, MA
@ The Roxy

3/13
Chicago, IL
@ Epiphany

3/14
Minneapolis, MN
@ Fine Line Music Hall

3/18
San Antonio, TX
@ The Scout Bar

3/20
Austin, TX/
SXSW Performance with Devo
@ Austin
Music Hall

3/23
San Diego, CA @ Belly Up

3/24
Anaheim, CA
@ House of Blues

3/25
Los Angeles, CA @ Henry Fonda Theater

3/26
San Francisco, CA @ Mezzanine

3/27
Portland, OR
@ Doug Fir

3/28
Seattle, WA
@ Showbox

CHANNEL GUIDE Fri – Sun

Compiled by Blurt Staff

206 digital, satellite and hi-def channels and nothin’ on?
Not likely. Here are BLURT’s top music television picks of the day. The time is
followed by the network/cable/satellite channel, then the name of the program
and/or featured artist(s). All times are EST.

TIME (EST) / CHANNEL
/ PROGRAM / ARTIST(S)

Friday, January 30:

1:00 VH1 Classic: Classic Albums Fleetwood Mac Rumours

9:00 Sundance: Live From Abbey Road – The Kills, Sara Bareilles,
Fratellis

11:30 CBS David Letterman: Gaslight Anthem

11:35 NBC Jay Leno: James Morrison

12:00 Sundance: Stoned (Brian Jones)

12:00 VH1 Classic: Metallica Some Kind of Monster

12:05 ABC Jimmy Kimmel: Benji Hughes

12:30 CBS Craig Ferguson:
Sharon Jones & the Dap-Kings

12:35 NBC Conan O’Brien: Nick Cave
& the Bad Seeds

Saturday, January 31:

1:30 VH1 Classic: Live Aid

8:00 VH1 Classic: Metallica Some Kind of Monster

9:00 NBC: Saturday Night Live Sports Extra

9:00 PBS: Austin
City Limits: Nick Lowe +
The Swell Season

11:30 NBC: Saturday Night Live: Steve Martin, Jason Mraz

Sunday, February 1:

11:30 VH1 Classic: Live Aid

12:00 Sundance: Spectacle: Elvis Costello w/Renee Fleming

1:00 thru 9:00 VH1 Classic: Classic Albums – Pink Floyd,
Steview Sonder, Meat Loaf, The Who, Judas Priest, U2, Nirvana

2:00 HD Net: Guillemots – Live at the Astoria – Premiere

3:00 HD Net: – LIVE!
from Central Park SummerStage: The Best of
w/Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Ben Folds, Stellastar, Guster

4:30 HD Net: Gorillaz – Demon Days Live

5:45 HD Net: The Hives – Live From Terminal 5 in New York

7:00 HD Net: Daughtry – Live in California

8:00 NBC: Super Bowl w/Bruce Springsteen

Coachella Acts Named; McCartney Signs On

“Safe,” “huge” or…?

By Fred Mills

The 2009 Coachella festival’s lineup was announced last
night. The event, of course, takes place April 17-19 at Empire Polo Field in Indio, California.
Among the big headliners: The Cure, My Bloody Valentine and the Yeah Yeah Yeahs
(Sunday), the Killers, Amy Winehouse, Thievery Corporation and Band of Horses
(Saturday) and Paul McCartney, Morrissey, Franz Ferdinand and Leonard Cohen
(Friday).

The selection of McCartney is already raising eyebrows in
some corners. In a ridiculously long, navel gazing blog entry at the Los Angeles Times, Macca’s inclusion is
viewed alternately as a “safe” one for most festivals but, in the case of this
alt-rockin’ gathering of the hoodies, a credibility-stretching booking choice; as
“huge,” considering the man is one of the biggest stars on the planet; and as
evidence of Coachella attempting to display its clout in the face of a souring
economy and a declining festival market – a number of festivals last year
either failed to sell out as usual or took a bit of a beating at the box
office.

For his part, McCartney simply said in an official statement
sent to the Times, “I have heard
that Coachella is one of the greatest festivals in the world. I’m really
excited to get out there and rock!”

Well, all right!

Details, etc. at www.coachella.com,
natch.

Tickets go on sale TODAY, Friday, January
30 at 9:00 AM (PT) at all Ticketmaster locations. Three-day weekend passes are $269.00 +$3
charity + $9 facility fee ($1 charity/$3 facility fee per day) and single
day tickets are $99.00 +$1 charity + $3 facility fee. The same layaway plan that Goldenvoice
successfully implemented for STAGECOACH:
California’s
Country Music Festival will be available for weekend passes ONLY for this
year’s COACHELLA. Festival goers now have the option to purchase 3-day festival
tickets and onsite camping tickets on a payment plan.

Layaway options (available online
ONLY through February 28) are as follows.
50% down: this payment option
allows purchasers to pay a 50% deposit of the total order now, with the
remaining 50% automatically deducted April 1; 3-payment plan: purchasers initially pay 10% of the total
order, with the remaining amounts automatically deducted in equal payments on
March 1 and April 1.

FRIDAY
APRIL 17: Paul McCartney, Morrissey,
Franz Ferdinand, Leonard Cohen, Conor Oberst and the Mystic Valley Band,
Beirut, The Black Keys, Girl Talk, Silversun Pickups, The Ting Tings, The
Crystal Method, Ghostland Observatory, Crystal Castles, The Airborne Toxic
Event, We Are Scientists, N.A.S.A., Patton & Rahzel, M. Ward, The Presets,
The Hold Steady, A Place to Bury Strangers, Felix da Housecat, Buraka Som
Sistema, Ryan Bingham, Bajofondo, Peanut Butter Wolf, Noah & the Whale,
White Lies, The Bug, Alberta Cross, Los Campesinos!, Craze & Klever,
Molotov, Switch, Gui Boratto, Steve Aoki, The Aggrolites, People Under the
Stairs, The Courteeners, Cage the Elephant, Dear and the Headlights.

SATURDAY,
APRIL 18: The Killers, Amy Winehouse,
Thievery Corporation, TV on the Radio, Band of Horses, Fleet Foxes, MSTRKRFT,
Michael Franti & Spearhead, Atmosphere, Mastodon, TRAV$DJ-AM, Henry
Rollins, Crookers, Turbonegro, Hercules and Love Affair, Superchunk, Glasvegas,
Dr. Dog, Drive-By Truckers, Booker T & the DBT’s, Amanda Palmer, The Bloody
Beetroots, Surkin, Para One (Live), Calexico, Liars, Bob Mould Band, Zane Lowe,
Electric Touch, Blitzen Trapper, James Morrison, Drop the Lime, Glass Candy,
Thenewno2, Gang Gang Dance, Billy Talent, Ida Maria, Ariel Pink’s Haunted
Graffiti, Zizek, Cloud Cult, Tinariwen.

SUNDAY,
APRIL 19: The Cure, My Bloody Valentine,
Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Throbbing Gristle, Lupe Fiasco, Paul Weller, Peter Bjorn and
John, X, Antony & the Johnsons, Roni Size, Public Enemy, Jenny Lewis,
Groove Armada, Paolo Nutini, Christopher Lawrence, Lykke Li, The Kills,
Okkervil River, M.A.N.D.Y., Clipse, Sebastien Tellier, Fucked Up, Perry
Farrell, The Horrors, Late of the Pier, K’naan, Junior Boys, Brian Jonestown
Massacre, Supermayer, No Age, Vivian Girls, Shepard Fairey, Themselves,
Gaslight Anthem, The Knux, Mexican Institute of Sound, The Night Marchers,
Marshall Barnes.

Ettes w/New EP, Tour Dates

Where do you go after
you’ve scaled the media heights and penned an installment in BLURT’s recurring
series “Most Fucked Up Thing I’ve Ever Seen“? Why, if you are the mighty Ettes,
you release a new records and get ready to hit the road so’s to outrun all the
outraged villagers!

By Blurt Staff

Retro beat-punk band The
Ettes, currently melting hearts and stages nationwide with their
intense, hard-driving sound, are releasing a new EP, Danger Is! on April 7 through Take Root Records. A
limited-edition vinyl single of “No Home”/”Lo And Behold,” recorded
with friend/fan Dan Auerbach of
the Black Keys, will be
available as well. The 5-track EP, a follow-up to their recent
full-length, Look at Life Again, includes two tracks with
Auerbach, one unreleased track from the band’s UK Toe Rag sessions with Liam
Watson and two unreleased live tracks. You can listen to the single, “Go Home,”
and check out tour dates on the band’s MySpace page at www.myspace.com/theettes.

Featuring frontwoman/guitarist/chanteuse Coco, drummer Poni and Jem on bass, THE ETTES’
unique sound combines the band’s musical loves — early punk anthems, ‘60s pop
and country (think Patsy Cline and Nancy Sinatra embracing ’70s NYC punk) —
with their own raw, combustible sound. Add enough attitude and live
presence to ignite the dance floor and you’ve got THE ETTES, who continue to blow away audiences at clubs and fests
such as SXSW, CMJ and more. They also conquered Spain, where the Spanish edition of
Rolling Stone dedicated five pages to a spread on the trio.

Tour Dates:

SXSW
(more shows to be announce):

FRI,
Mar 20 @ THE MOHAWK, 10pm (main stage) – Take Root Records, Rock River
Music and Noisepop Official SxSW Showcase featuring The Hold Steady, The
Blakes, Radio 4 and more.

UK DATES (European shows
announced soon):

WE Apr 1 2009 GLASGOW, Scotland
@ Captain’s Rest 9:00P

TH Apr 2 2009 DERBY, UK
@ Rockhouse Club NME 9:00P (

FR Apr 3 2009 YORK, UK
@ Duchess 9:00P

SA Apr 4 2009 COVENTRY, UK
at Kasbah 9:00P

SU Apr 5 2009 CARDIFF, Wales @ Barfly
9:00P

MO Apr 6 2009 LONDON, UK
The Windmill in Brixton, 9:00P

TU Apr 7 2009 CAMBRIDGE, UK
@ Portland Arms
9:00P

Der Zappa Krappa: Family Loses Lawsuit

The ever-litigious
Gail Zappa strikes out this time around…

By Fred Mills

Some time ago Frank Zappa’s estate, headed up by widow Gail
Zappa, sued the German Frank Zappa fan club over the use of the late composer’s
name in their annual get-together in called the Zappanale festival. She’d filed
for damages of $325,000 and demanded the removal of a bronze sculpture of FZ.
Last week, however a German court ruled against Zappa, saying that her “rights
were not violated and that she could not prove she uses the Zappa brand in
Germany herself [and] has had knowledge of the festival since it began in
1990.”

The festival organizers are free to continue on with the
festival as well as use Zappa’s image on festival-related logos and merch. Said
Zappa fan club president Thomas Dippel, “We have always been certain that
we have the older rights,” he said. “We have also patented the name
of the festival with the German patent office. Gail Zappa only applied for the
patent of her own rights in 2002.”

The 2009 festival takes place August 12-16 in Bad Doberan
and will feature a number of bands performing Zappa music.

Of Montreal’s Live Sex Show Continues

Er, the
headline is only partially tongue in cheek…

By Blurt Staff

Everyone’s favorite orgiastic popsters continue apace with their
acclaimed Skeletal Lamping tour. If
you haven’t discovered the sordid fruits of Kevin Barnes & Company’s stage
show, you ain’t lived. So while you wait for the band to return from overseas,
settle in and read BLURT’s recent profile of Of Montreal HERE.

2/1 — Strasbourg, France — La Laiterie
2/19 — Pomona, CA — The Glasshouse
2/21 — Honolulu, HI — Loft Gallery & Lounge
2/25 — Auckland, NZ — King Arms
2/26 — Wellington, NZ — San Francisco Bath House
2/28 — Perth, AU — Perth International Arts Festiva
3/3 — Sydney, AU — Manning Bar
3/4 — Brisbane, AU — The Zoo
3/5 — Melbourne, AU — The Hi Fi
3/7 — Golden Plains, AU — Golden Plains Festival
3/10 – Osaka, JP — Club Quattro
3/12 — Tokyo, JP — Duo Music Exchange
3/15 — Singapore, SG — Mosaic Music Festival / Esplanade Theatre
4/13 — Carrboro, NC — Cat’s Cradle
4/14 — Baltimore, MD — Sonar
4/15 — New York, NY — Music Hall of Williamsburg
4/16 — New York, NY — Music Hall of Williamsburg
4/17 — New York, NY — Music Hall of Williamsburg
4/19 — New Haven, CT — Toad’s Place
4/20 — Boston, MA — Paradise
4/21 — Boston, MA — Paradise
4/22 — Philadelphia, PA — Trocadero
4/23 — Covington, KY — Madison Theater
4/24 — Columbia, MO — The Blue Note
4/25 — Norman, OK — Norman Music Festival

[Photo Credit: Courtnee]

Antony, Fennesz, Glass at Big Ears Fest

 

 

Amazing lineup
next weekend includes Antony,
Philip Glass, Michael Gira, Fennesz, Dan Deacon and Negativland.

 

By Fred Mills

 

 

Holy crap. While everybody’s busy pissing themselves
over the (admittedly stellar) lineup for this year’s Langerado Festival that
takes place in Florida March 6-8, clued-in hipsters know that the 2009 festival
season officially begins a month earlier in, of all places, Knoxville, TN.

 

That’s right: next week, Feb. 6-8, marks the inaugural
BIG EARS 2009 festival in Knoxville, and as the organizers put it, “The
festival will offer an exciting and dynamic platform of musical and artistic
discovery, presenting a variety of adventurous, exploratory concerts and
performances, installations, discussions, and interactive experiences by
artists possessed of singular and unique visions that stand apart from the
mainstream.”

 

Boy howdy to that – just glom onto this list of
artists set to appear:

Philip Glass w/ Wendy Sutter
Antony and the Johnsons
Jon Hassell + Maarifa Street
The Necks
Michael Gira
Negativland
Fennesz
Fennesz collaborating with Mark Linkous and Scott Minor (of Sparklehorse);
Matmos
Pauline Oliveros
Neil Hamburger
Dan Deacon + Baltimore Round Robin
Burning Star Core (C Spencer Yeh)
San Agustin
David Daniel
Luminescent Orchestrii
Sxip Shirey
Fence Kitchen
Nicolas Collins
Larkin Grimm
Ned Rothenberg
The Shaking Ray Levis

 

 

I mean, a festival with Antony,
Negativland, Dan Deacon, Christian Fennesz (making an incredibly rare U.S.
appearance), Philip Glass and The Shaking
Ray Levis
?!? WTF!! (While we’re on the subject, let us all congratulate the
Shaking Ray Levi society for over 20 years of service and dedication…)

 

Events will kick off Friday at 5 pm (Sat/Sun shows
begin at noon) at venues around Knoxville’s
downtown area, with the big shows taking place at the storied Bijou Theatre.
While festival passes are being sold (see below for details), individual
tickets for the Bijou concerts are also on sale at the box office
(865-684-1200) or the Big Ears website.

 

 

 

 Those shows
are:

 

 

Fennesz Friday, February 6, 2009 at 8pm

Jon Hassell + Maarifa Street
Friday, February 6, 2009 at 10:30pm

Philip Glass Saturday, February 7, 2009 at 3pm

Antony &
The Jonhsons Saturday, February 7, 2009 at 8pm

The Necks Saturday, February 7, 2009 at 11pm

Negativland Sunday, February 8, 2009 at 2:30pm

Festival Finale: Michael Gira & Fennesz/Linkous/Minor and Larkin Grimm Sunday,
February 8, 2009 at 7pm

There will also be various workshops taking place
throughout the weekend, including the “Mooglab” (hosted by the Bob Moog
Foundation), a lecture by Pauline Oliveros, the “Hardware Hacking” workshop
with Nicolas Collins and a drum workshop by the Levis. For all the details, schedules and
ticketing, go to the official website at www.bigearsfestival.com.

 

***

 

BIG EARS WEEKEND PASSES:
Two weekend festival passes are available:

The Inner Ear Pass:
A limited number of Inner Ear festival passes are available for $195. An
Inner Ear festival pass entitles you to admission to ALL festival events
during the Big Ears weekend. This includes first-tier reserved seats to all
theater performances, including Philip Glass w/ Wendy Sutter, Antony and the Johnsons, Fennesz (solo), Jon Hassell + Maarifa Street, The Necks, Negativland ³It¹s All In Your Head,² and others.

The Outer Ear Pass:
A limited number of Outer Ear festival passes will also be offered for $100. Outer Ear passes include admission to all Big Ears performances (excluding Philip Glass w/ Wendy Sutter, Antony
and the Johnsons, and Michael Gira & Fennesz/Linkous/Minor with Larkin Grimm).

 

Modest Mouse Announce Tour Dates

Mimicking Birds Will
Open Shows; No Johnny Marr w/MM

By Blurt Staff

Modest Mouse will hit the road for a brief run of dates beginning February 22
in Oakland, CA. The dates include a stop in Los Angeles at the Hollywood Palladium and a headlining
slot on the Langerado Festival in Miami,
FL on Mar. 8. Jim Fairchild of
Grandaddy will be playing guitar with Modest Mouse on this tour (he replaces
Johnny Marr, who’s busy with other duties, including work with The Cribs). Mimicking
Birds, the newest signing to Isaac Brock’s Glacial Pace label, will be the
opener on all dates.

Modest Mouse with Mimicking Birds Tour
Dates:

Feb 22 Oakland, CA Fox Theater
Feb 23 Visalia, CA
The Fox Theatre
Feb 24 Los Angeles, CA
Hollywood Palladium
Feb 25 Tempe, AZ
The Marquee
Feb 26 Albuquerque, NM
Albuquerque Convention Center
Feb 28 Boulder, CO
Balch Fieldhouse
Mar 2 Kansas City, MO
Uptown Theater
Mar 3 Oklahoma City, OK
Diamond Ballroom
Mar 4 Austin, TX
Stubb’s
Mar 5 Oxford, MS
The Lyric Oxford
Mar 7 Atlanta, GA
The Tabernacle
Mar 8 Miami, FL
Langerado Festival

All tickets go on sale January 29. Please visit www.modestmouse.com for
more details.

Black Mountain Sets W.Coast Tour

 

Still “high” on last
year’s album…

 

By Blurt Staff

 

 

Last year Black
Mountain released their
critically-acclaimed album “In the
Future
“, hailed by critics as one of the best of 2008.  “In the Future” was shortlisted for
the prestigious Polaris Prize – an award for the best full-length Canadian
album based on artistic merit. Black
Mountain performed
“Stormy High” for the tall red-haired gentleman Conan O’Brien and his
audience in February during their “Friendship Tour Two Thousand and
Great” with Bon Iver.

 

 

Here’s what we had to say about the album:

 

 

The Canuck quintet
clears the bong and coughs up another masterpiece. Once more devoted, but not
bound, to the psychedelic aesthetic, Stephen McBean and crew weave a tapestry
of trippy tunes both heavy and deep. Opener “Stormy High” couches big dumb
riffs in ominous organ and Amber Webber’s moans, which dovetail with McBean’s
own Young-meets-Osbourne yowl. Black Mountain also shows its gravitas by
employing both profundity and puissance in its tunes, like “Bright Light”: a
17-minute epic that starts as a quiet lament/rumination and builds to a
900-foot tall (though also subterraneanly equidistant) jam where guitar and
organ do a perverse West Side Story knife
dance ritual as pointless as it is significant. Coming after 250 shows behind
2005’s Black Mountain, it’s a tight, intense ride-all
sound and fury signifying awesome.

 

 

 

2008 saw some significant travel: SXSW, Coachella, All
Tomorrow’s Parties, The Glastonbury Festival, Brazil, the Czech Republic, and
many more festivals and countries.  Much of it was chronicled in bassist
Matt Camirand’s excellent blog:
http://www.matthewmeridian-wishinonehand.blogspot.com/

The band’s friends and brothers in Canuck-dom, The Sadies, will be joining the
band on a West Coast tour in late March following Black
Mountain’s tour in Australia. 

All dates will be performed with The
Sadies:

03/20/09 San Francisco, CA – Rickshaw Shop: BUY
TICKETS

03/21/09 Los Angeles, CA – The Echoplex: BUY
TICKETS

03/22/09 San Diego, CA – Casbah: BUY
TICKETS

03/23/09 Santa Cruz, CA – The Crepe Place: BUY
TICKETS

03/25/09 Portland, OR – Hawthorne Theatre: BUY
TICKETS

03/26/09 Bellingham, WA – The Wild Buffalo  
03/27/09 Seattle, WA – Neumos: BUY
TICKETS