Monthly Archives: September 2010

SHOWCASE: Bowie’s Station to Station Reissue

 

The Thin White Duke’s
transition album sounded like nothing before, nor after – as EMI’s new expanded
special/deluxe edition, out this week, amply illustrates.

 

By A.D. Amorosi

 

It’s been said that 1976’s Station to Station was the transitional center point of Bowie’s
1970s, the testy album that found him exiting princely literate pop,
character-driven glam and plastic soul (Hunky
Dory
, Aladdin Sane, Young Americans) for more experimental
waters (the Berlin trilogy). Yet, with its numb musical web of steely cabaret,
motorik-electro-metal, histrionic balladry and ice queen death disco set below
existentialist themes and an overawing schmaltzy croon, not only is StS an anomaly in Bowie’s ever-shifting
career. There’s nothing else that sounds like it; not before (despite Can/Neu!
influences) not after (despite Beck steeling bits for Midnight Vultures).

 

Stripped of the oxygenated feathered rock and the wily pomp
circumstances of cracked actor-characterization, this Bowie – lean, slicked
back and black-and-white what from the wealth of StS photos and paraphernalia inside the Isolar tour programs and
such that make up the Deluxe edition – sounded as wintry cool and stark as he
appeared. The block red lettering and bleak white-and-gray photography of its
cover (returned to such after the famed Ryko re-issues used the color originals
taken from his starring role in The Man
Who Fell to Earth)
is cutting and spare. The airless StS, despite several lengthy songs, is brief (six songs, no
outtakes or lost tracks) and feels both incomplete (then again, so does Low which followed it), yet perfectly
finite, withdrawn within itself and all worlds around it.

 

The entire package, from inside to out, is hermetically
sealed and severe. Or is it?

 

The music is frozen – stilted angular pianos, brain-rattling
bass and synthetic train sounds mark the title track like a pox even when its
melodies prove ever-reaching and rich; the ice-cavernous production of “Stay”
and its soul-blasting guitar licks are without thaw even when its tasteful solo
raves on. There are tinted, weird whispers to be heard if you listen hard,
blowing like tiny gusts of icy wind. The vocals, whether soaring from low to high
on the mid-tempo disco-flicker of “Golden Years” (“don’t let me hear you say
life’s taking you nowhere… angel”) or swooning through romancing the stony
religiosity of “Word on a Wing” are so chill you can still see Bowie’s breath
hanging in mid-air thirty four years after the fact.

 

And make no mistake – this is Bowie at his powerhouse vocal best. Storied
as one of his most (the most?) cocaine-fueled recording sessions and
coming off the frailty of singing on Young
Americans
, it’s amazing that the singer had any voice at all. Yet, StS – the paranoid studio album and
famed Live from Nassau Coliseum CD
that this box contains – show Bowie
to be pop’s most protean yet elegant singer.

 

That he, the Euro-man cometh, this Thin White Duke, shows
his disconnected connection for wayward television monitors (the jaunty
“TVC-15”) may say that this Bowie
is incapable of loving beyond the alien. “And who will connect me with
love?” asks Bowie
through the raging racing second half of the clinical epic “Station to Station.”
Yet the Christian-themed and hymn-like feel of “Word on a Wing” prove, perhaps,
that Bowie’s
focus was on something higher than modern love or mortal man.

 

Ain’t that close to love?

 

[Photo Credit: Andrew Kent]

 

(A.D. Amorosi is a
BLURT Contributing Editor
)

 

 

Animal Collective Gets Shoe'd

Tennis shoes, that is…

By Blurt Staff

The footwear and indie rock world is apparently all abuzz over the news that Animal Collective is designing its own line of shoes in conjunction with the Keep company. Due next March, initial preorders will also get you a musical bonus: a cassette of unreleased A.C. music. The image above shows a slip-on pair called “The Tobin” (the illustration was created by Avey Tare) and you can check it and more angles out at the Keep website.

The Scocorro Island Conservation Fund will be the recipient of proceeds – always nice to hear of bands doing good works. In a statement, Geologist expressed his love for the Revillagigedos islands saying, in a statement, “Hopefully this project will protect the animals of the [islands] through at least one more fishing season and draw more attention to the global problem of illegal fishing.” (Thanks to Pitchfork for the tip.)

 

 

First Look: New Three Mile Pilot Album

 

 

The
Inevitable Past Is The Future Forgotten, out this week on Temporary Residence,
delivers the inevitable truth: the band that spawned Pinback and Black Heart
Procession was one of Amerindie’s greatest. As it turns out, it still is.

 

By John Schacht

 

This was going to be a much-scrutinized release no matter how
it turned out, because in the 13 years since Three Mile Pilot was last heard from
rumors of an imminent record circulated as regularly as the changing of the
calendar.  In addition, the two bands TMP
split into – Pinback and the Black Heart Procession – are inarguably more
focused than the original, and have remained viable
record-releasing-and-touring entities over that time-frame. So whenever the
rumor rolled around, the question arose: Why bother? Well, now that it’s finally
happened, the fourth full-length from the parent group emphasizes the
“inevitable” in its title because this is precisely the outcome you’d expect
when you merged the musical DNA of Pinback and Black Heart. Just about the only
question was going to be which band’s music the reformed TMP might tilt toward.
One sure thing, it least resembles the old TMP. That incarnation’s three
records varied enough that, even on the third, best and final pre-hiatus record
(1997’s Another Desert, Another Sea),
TMP often sounded like a band in search of an identity – or two, as it
subsequently turned out.

 

They have one now, though, and even if it’s a familiar one,
that doesn’t make The Inevitable Past an academic exercise at all. Trading in some of TMP’s adventurous forays and
punk underpinnings for bouncing-but-brooding grooves and firmer song
structures, the two principal songwriters and singers – Black Heart’s Pall A. Jenkins
and Pinback’s Armistead Burwell Smith IV – sound totally revitalized here: This
is either the best Pinback record since 2004’s Summer In Abaddon, or Jenkins’ best work since 2002’s Amore del Tropico. The inevitability of
the record’s sound also points to the unique musical personalities the two key
members of the trio – along with drummer Tom Zinser, the other original Pilot member
— have forged during TMP’s hiatus. But in recent years both offspring acts
have settled into comfort zones (or ruts, according to some), so you can argue
that The Inevitable Past may be just
the ass-kick both acts needed.

 

If there’s a winner in the “sounds more like” sweepstakes,
it’s Pinback. The majority of these dozen tracks pulse with the same sinewy
momentum as the best Pinback songs: “Still Alive,” “Days of Wrath,” and “What’s
In the Air” share thick bass lines that slither between Zinser’s kinetic beats,
helix-like guitar lines that wind in and out of the melodies and over dense
mists of organ and synth swaths, and vocals that fold back over each other so
often and create so many textures it’s hard to tell who’s singing lead or
harmony. Classic Pinback, in other words, only with the inimitable Jenkins out
front, who sounds far more assured as a singer here than he did in the first
TMP.  Of course, we’ve come to identify
Jenkins’ voice indelibly with the sinister Black Heart sound – as though he’d somehow
swallowed the eerie singing saw that followed him around on Black Heart’s 2 and 3. But the Pinback-tempo songs here find him tapping into a different,
almost up-beat range, and Smith’s intricate harmonies (often in near-falsetto)
provide marvelous leavening for the heaviness.

 

Still, a few songs sound more Black Heart than Pinback. “The
Threshold,” with its midnight stalker-blend of organ and piano, is one of them,
as is “One Falls Away,” whose deliberate 3/4-time and pizzicato strings make it
sound like a gothic Dance of the Opium Addicts. But even these tracks are tweaked
in some fundamental, if subtle, manner as Smith’s input re-tools their rhythmic
underpinning. “Battle”
opens like one of BHP’s jittery paranoid-rockers from The Spell – but Smith’s roiling bass and some Steve Nieve-like Farfisa
add a light relief element that The Spell lacked. Similarly, the marvelous headlong rush of “Same Mistake” trumps any
rocker in the Black Heart catalog and stands tall next to any of Pinback’s.  

 

Despite their fondness for different narrative devices, both
bands traffic in dark and brooding narrative fare as though determined to keep
the shades shut against the terminal and bleaching sunshine of their native San Diego. That was also
the case with the original TMP, of course, so expecting something different
here would be counter-intuitive. But by now both bands excel at it, and that’s
why a typical narrative here like “Grey Clouds” imbues the darkness with solace
when Smith and Jenkins coil their vocals around one another in one of the
album’s – fuck it, one of the year’s — best moments: “It’s a far-off
dream/It’s a long way off” Smith mantra-chants, as Jenkins counter-points “You
can’t stop it.”

 

No doubt some first-incarnation TMP fans who grew up with that
band will express disappointment that little new ground is broken here — that
fact is certainly true – or mourn the final passing of the original if they’re
not fond of the offshoots. But for fans of Pinback and BHP, the familiar ground
covered is like seeing a well-worn field-headed-to-fallow deliver a bumper
crop. The Inevitable Past offers
proof for what many TMP fans suspected way back when — so, that’s where they were headed. It also validates all three
entities in the process, and adds a compelling, sort-of-new hybrid to the mix. That
tilts the balance overwhelmingly in favor of this reunion – inevitable or not.

 

Vashti Bunyan for N. Drake Arranger Tribute

 

Concert slated for this Sunday in London.

By Blurt Staff

Famed British string arranger Robert Kirby passed away a year ago, October 3, and in his time he’d worked with the likes of Elvis Costello, Paul Weller, the Strawbs and Elton John – and Nick Drake in particular. That’s his work you hear on the late Drake’s Five Leaves Left and Bryter Layter. In fact, it was in 2005 that Kirby handled conducting duties with an 18-piece orchestra at Central Park to put on a tribute concert of Drake’s music.

 

 

Now Kirby is getting his own tribute concert, this Sunday at London’s Cecil Sharp House. No less than folk legend Vashti Bunyan (above) is slated to appear, along with Teddy Thompson, Steve Ashley, Ben & Jason and an as-yet-unanounced “special guest.”

If you haven’t gotten your tickets and airline arrangements yet, however, be forewarned – ths show is rumored to be sold out already.

 

First Look: New Tricky LP + Tour Dates

 

 

 

Mixed Race is a mixed bag – but with moments
that rank among his best. It’s due out Oct. 5 on Domino.

 

By
Mark Jenkins

 

Fifteen
years after the epochal Maxinquaye,
it’s clear that the guy who made that richly layered masterpiece is not coming
back. Indeed, in the notes to his new Mixed
Race
, Tricky says he now considers some of his early work “too
cluttered.” That can’t be said of his latest album, which is direct, often
uptempo and only 29 minutes long. It includes some tracks that rank among
musician’s best — and a few that sound like rough sketches.

 

Currently
based in Paris, Tricky recalls his bad-boy Bristol adolescence on
such crackling numbers as “Kingston Logic” (with vocals by Terry
Lynn) and “Murder Weapon” (featuring the album’s principal female
singer, Frankey Riley). The latter track, which reworks an Echo Minott tune,
exemplifies Tricky’s current approach: It’s propelled by an insistent
“Peter Gunn” loop rather than a murmuring, kaleidoscopic array of
samples.

 

Mixed Race dabbles in lounge balladry
(“Early Bird”), techno (“Time to Dance”)
and Arab music (“Hakim”), but the album’s major influences are reggae
and Delta blues. The sultry “Come to Me” is a bluesy vamp, while
“Every Day” features a bleating harmonica and a work chant that might
have come from the Smithsonian Folkways archives. On the latter track, as on
“Really Real” (which features Primal Scream’s Bobby Gillespie),
Tricky drifts toward his trademark ghostly slo-mo. But there’s more guitar and
saxophone than aural mist on this album, the work of a studio wiz who’s become
less painstaking, but no less passionate.

 

TOUR DATES:

December 9th                    New York, NY
                            Le Poisson Rouge

December 10th                   Brooklyn, NY
                             Brooklyn Bowl

December 11th                   Montreal, QC
                    Club Soda

December 12th                   Toronto, ON
                              Mod Club

December 13th                   Chicago, IL
                                Lincoln Hall

December 14th                   Minneapolis, MN
                         Varsity

December 17th                   Seattle, WA
                               Neumo’s

December 18th                   Vancouver, BC
                           Venue

December 19th                   Portland,
OR                               Doug Fir Lounge

December 21st                   San Francisco,
CA                        Independent

Decemeber 22nd                 Los Angeles, CA
                         The Troubadour

 

Black Francis Rock Opera to Premiere

Bluefinger-based play to kick off Nov. 12 in Houstin.

 

By Blurt Staff

 

The Catastrophic Theatre (Houston, TX) announces the world premiere of the new Black Francis rock opera Bluefinger: The Fall and
Rise of Herman Brood, co-produced with the University of Houston School of
Theatre & Dance, featuring songs and concepts by Black Francis and Herman
Brood and adapted for the stage by Jason Nodler from an idea by Pixies
biographer Josh Frank.  

Bluefinger was inspired by the critically
acclaimed 2007 Black Francis album of the
same name.  The album was Francis’ first
concept album and was also significant for marking a return to the stage name
he’d used with his legendary band Pixies after a long solo career under the name
of Frank Black.  The album focuses entirely on the life and death of Herman
Brood, a Dutch artist, rocker and junkie who leapt to his death from the roof of
the Amsterdam Hilton in 2001 at the age of 54.

In 2008, Josh
Frank attended the Austin production of the original Daniel Johnston
phantasmagoria Speeding Motorcycle, created and directed by Nodler.  After the
performance, Frank expressed his longstanding desire to do the same sort of
thing with the work of Charles Thompson (a.k.a. Black Francis/Frank Black).  A few weeks later
Thompson and Frank met and Thompson expressed an interest in a theatrical
version of his recent album Bluefinger.  Frank introduced Thompson to Nodler who
began to listen to the record in the interest of developing the play.
 

Among the songs on the album, one stood out to Nodler as the lynchpin
of any stage version; “Your Mouth Into Mine” seemed to be an almost religious
expression of that phenomenon of taking the work of another artist so personally
that we go beyond identifying with them and almost become them – where the
artist, more than just speaking for us, provides the inspiration for us to speak
for ourselves.  According to Thompson this song is about Brood feeling this way
towards his American rock heroes, but in listening to it Nodler had the same
experience with the music of Black Francis. 
As he further researched Brood’s own music, the floodgates opened.  The deep and
personal connection he felt with the songs of both of these artists would become
the basis for the early development of the play.

All my days, I’ve
been listening to you play
I’ve spent all my days driving, all my nights
trying
You are so big but that don’t make me so small
You rule the world
but now I’m standing tall

I’m taking your mouth into mine

Over
the play’s two-year development, Nodler received useful advice and guidance from
many people: Frank, Francis, and Nodler’s
longtime collaborator Anthony Barilla who joined him in a month-long NEA
fellowship at The MacDowell Colony where early work on the project began in
earnest.  But perhaps the most useful guiding principle came from Brood’s
manager and friend of 30 years Koos Van Dijk when he said, “Don’t worry too much
about Herman.  He will be there.  Use your own blues.”

Bluefinger is the
story of Herman Brood to be sure but it is also the story of each of the artists
that have laid fingers on it, living or not.  It is the story of a long lineage
of artists who have taken the mouths of those that went before into their own,
creating in the process work that spans generations and transcends the work of
any one of them in favor of work that belongs to our historic culture.  In this
case, Brood took from Little Richard and Mose Allison (among so many others),
Francis took from Brood and Nodler took from
them all.  This is how artists become legend, how they outwit
death.

Brood was famous in his native Holland for his music
and art, but he was equally well known for his wild lifestyle.  A masterful
manipulator of the media, he was the subject of a biographical film, various TV
and film documentaries and countless books dedicated to chronicling his
biography, his musical career, his writings and his art.  He was also
notoriously addicted to speed and alcohol and stood apart from other celebrities
by speaking openly and unapologetically about his habits to the media.  He was
also addicted to sex and gambling but his most powerful and enduring addiction
was for the spotlight.  

For more than 30 years, Brood was the most
unique character on the scene in Holland. For weeks at a time he would appear in
public dressed as an airline stewardess or in pajamas or with a parrot on his
head and parrot shit on his hair and shoulders.  For a period he carried two
guns on his waist, though they were illegal in his country. For more than a year
he wore a saxophone around his neck though he could not play it. He was
constantly performing street actions and causing commotions.  He was
romantically linked for a time to the German musician Nina Hagen and appeared in
a feature film with her which launched yet another career for Brood.  Indeed he
was an actor, a poet, a singer, a piano player, a songwriter, a rock and roll
star, a highly successful visual artist and a media phenomenon.

What most
sets Brood’s life apart from other rock and roll stories was his philosophy
toward life and the way in which it played out in public.  He was as famous for
his ever-changing costumes and daily public antics as he was for his music and
paintings.  More than any other contemporary figure, Brood’s life was his art.
 

And yet, apart from a brief period of success in the U.S. during the
late 1970’s (a period that ended abruptly with a disastrous New York showcase),
his notoriety was confined almost exclusively to his native Holland.  He has
been called The Netherlands’ “most famous and only rock star,” his paintings are
omnipresent throughout his country, and millions of words have been used to
explore the impact he made.  But they are all in Dutch.  Until Black Francis
made the record dedicated to him, few on this side of the Atlantic even knew
Brood existed.  The true story of his life is one of the most interesting,
dynamic and dramatic stories still to be told and yet, until the album and the
upcoming play, one had to go to Holland to hear it.

Inspired
by Black Francis’ characteristically
abstract lyrics, the play’s story is told in a non-linear fashion, emphasizing
themes over biographical narrative including the desire to make a mark on the
world before departing it and to live life fiercely and to its fullest. 
Stylistically the play takes a cue from Brecht in its use of stand-alone scenes
and songs which accrete into larger ideas. The audience will be free to draw its
own conclusions and those conclusions will likely be as diverse and far-ranging
as those his countrymen had to Brood’s own life and work.

The play has
been conceived and will be directed by The Catastrophic Theatre’s Artistic
Director Jason Nodler, a playwright and director who has collaborated with
artists as eclectic as legendary outsider artist Daniel Johnston, Pulitzer
prize-winning playwright Suzan-Lori Parks and Emmy award-winning actor Jim
Parsons.  Nodler has worked closely with Francis to realize the theatrical
adaptation of his album.  

Texas musicians Matt Kelly (as Brood) and
Michael Haaga (as Black Francis) will star. 
During the 1990’s, Kelly and Haaga fronted two of the most influential and
popular bands in Texas: the funk act Sprawl and the metal explosion Dead Horse,
respectively.  Kelly’s subsequent bands The Joint Chiefs, Rugrash, middlefinger,
Les Saucy Pants and Lick Lick, which alternately combined punk, rock, pop, blues
and lounge music, have each been wildly popular in Houston and Austin.  Haaga
went on to play with Superjoint Ritual before creating his acclaimed solo album
The Plus and Minus Show which featured an all-star line-up, swept local award
shows and was universally praised in the press as the best pop album produced in
Texas in recent memory.  

The music, more than 20 songs by Francis and Brood, will be performed by two live
bands comprised of some of the best musicians in Houston and
Austin.

Nodler’s longtime collaborator Anthony Barilla, a resident of
Kosovo, will travel to Texas to provide support in creating and arranging the
play and music. Barilla is an accomplished and prolific writer, musician,
composer and theatre artist. His work, both for Infernal Bridegroom Productions
and his band seximals, has received extensive play on college radio stations and
was included in NPR’s official release of music from This American Life. 
Houston composer, musician and arranger John Duboise, best known for his
participation in local string quartet Two Star Symphony and his own original
compositions inspired by the work of Edward Gorey, will direct the music from
onstage.  Tony-nominated designer Kevin Rigdon, an early and frequent
contributor to Chicago’s Steppenwolf Theatre with numerous Broadway credits,
will serve as production designer.

The play will be performed
in the intimate, 100-seat theater at DiverseWorks Artspace, 1117 East Freeway,
Houston, TX 77002.

Bluefinger runs Wednesdays through Saturdays at 8 p.m.
from November 12 – December 18.

 

 

Troika Music Fest Bands Announced

 

 

Dillon Fence, Valient
Thorr, Chatham County Line, Jack Oblivian, Wesley Wolfe, Birds of Avalon and
Dan Melchior are among the dozens of bands announced for Nov. event in Durham,
NC.

 

By Blurt Staff

 

 

Defying the notion that music festivals are outdoor summer
happening, the 6th annual Troika Music Festival will take place in Durham, NC,
on Nov. 4-6.  This year’s lineup–which
includes bands from more than a dozen labels from 307 Knox, Mammoth, Trekky,
Churchkey and Odessa among many others–promises to continue in the vein of
previous years, with the Triangle’s own new-traditionalists Chatham County Line
on board to play a headlining set at the brand new Motorco Music Hall while
other local favorites, including fist-pumping rockers Red Collar and
standard-bearers Dillon Fence are on tap to play throughout the festival’s
three days. Newcomers including the very buzz-worthy Cassis Orange, from the
brand-new Grip Tapes label is also set to perform alongside other favorites
like Old Bricks, another Triangle band that garnered heaps of praise during
this month’s inaugural Hopscotch festival in Raleigh. 

 

Troika organizers also announce the inclusion of two new venues in
this year’s lineup, making the 2010 festival a strictly-downtown event that is
for the first time entirely walkable. The Casbah, located on West Main Street and booked by former Yep
Roc label head Steve Gardner, and Motorco, on Geer Street, are opening this fall just
in time for Troika programming. Motorco is booked by Chris Tamplin, formerly of
Raleigh’s Tir
Na Nog which played host to the extremely popular WKNC-sponsored Local Beer
Local Band series every Thursday for the last several years.

 

“Bring your walking shoes and sample all the offerings of
this year’s festival,” Director Melissa Thomas said.  “Look out for some
close-to festival weekend announcements on Twitter and Facebook.  We are
excited about our line ups this year and as always are looking forward to three
days of great music in Durham.” 

 

Organizers are also happy to announce the inclusion of three
events being curated by local favorites. Greg Humphreys, of Dillon Fence, is in
the process of curating a songwriter’s night, Craig Powell, of Layabout House
and local DJ fame will present a showcase and Independent Weekly music editor and Hopscotch organizer Grayson
Currin will also present an evening of bands. 

 

Additional lineup announcements, including a full schedule, will
be announced in coming weeks. The full list of bands announced this week
includes:

 

Americans In France * Billy Sugarfix’s Carousel * Birds &
Arrows * Birds of Avalon * Cassis Orange * Chatham County Line * Dan Melchoir
und Das Menace * Decoration Ghost * Dillon Fence * Double Negative * Filthybird
* Free Electric State * Futurebirds * Gross Ghost * Hammer No More The Fingers
* Hog * I Was Totally Destroying It * In The Year of the Pig * Jack Oblivian *
Joe Romeo * Justin Robinson and the Maryannettes * Last Year’s Men * Mandolin
Orange * Midtown Dickens * Minor Stars * Mount Moriah * Naked Gods * North
Elementary * Old Bricks * Onward, Soldiers * Organos * Phil Cook and his Feat *
Pink Flag * Red Collar * Shipwrecker * Spider Bags * The Jackets * The Sames *
The Small Ponds * The Wigg Report * Valient Thorr * Veelee * Wesley Wolfe *
Wood Ear

 

Details on the web:  http://troikamusicfestival.org/

 

Deer Tick Bus Auction Raises $2k for Oxfam

 

 

Touring bus sells
after being on eBay for less than a day.

 

By Blurt Staff

 

Last week Deer Tick announced they were auctioning off their
2001 GMC Savana Schoolbus (mileage: 122,134 miles) – dubbed “The Flagship” –  in order to raise money to donate to Oxfam’s flood
relief efforts in Pakistan.

 

“The
situation over there is so critical, but it seems that very few people are
aware of it,” said Deer Tick frontman John McCauley, at the time.
“Maybe it’s the stigma with that part of the world, I’m not sure. Either
way, we feel really strongly that people should be more aware of the situation
and hopefully we can help with that.”

 

“At Oxfam
America, we are lucky to
have some of the world’s most amazing artists support our mission and campaigns,”
said Bob Ferguson, Senior Advisor of Music Outreach for Oxfam, “We’re very
pleased that Deer Tick has joined that group in advocating on behalf of our
flood relief and recovery efforts in Pakistan.”

 

The auction
began Sept. 21 and was to run for up to 3 weeks at eBay (viewable at http://tiny.cc/deertickbusauction) – but
after an opening of $500, the thing was gone within 24 hours when a bidder
opted for the Buy It Now price of $2,000.

 

Said
bidder has no bidding history at eBay so here’s hoping the whole deal
progresses to completion to everyone’s satisfaction. And nice showing, Deer
Tick.

 

The
band hits the road for another tour, and presumably in another bus, next week:

 

10/06 Chapel
Hill, NC – Local 506
10/07 Athens, GA – 40 Watt Club *#
10/08 Greenville, SC – Fall For Greenville *
10/09 Auburn, AL – Bourbon Street *
10/10 Birmingham, AL – Zydeco +
10/11 New Orleans, LA – One Eyed Jacks +
10/12 Houston, TX – The Bronze Peacock Room @ House of Blues +
10/13 Austin, TX – Emo’s +
10/14 Laredo, TX – Old No. 2 +
10/16 Tempe, AZ – Sail Inn +
10/17 San Diego, CA – The Loft / UCSD +
10/19 Los Angeles, CA – El Rey +
10/20 San Francisco, CA – Regency Ballroom +
10/21 Portland, OR – Crystal Ballroom +
10/22 Vancouver, BC – Biltmore Cabaret %+
10/23 Bellingham, WA – Wild Buffalo +
10/24 Seattle, WA – Neumos +
10/26 Salt Lake City, UT – Urban Lounge
10/27 Denver, CO – Larimer Lounge
10/28 Omaha, NE – Bourbon Theatre
10/29 Minneapolis, MN – Triple Rock Social Club
10/30 Chicago, IL – Bottom Lounge
10/31 St. Louis, MO – Off Broadway !
11/02 Washington, DC – Black Cat
11/03 Philadelphia, PA – First Unitarian Church
11/05 Providence, RI – AS220
11/06 Providence, RI – AS220 (matinee show)
11/06 Providence, RI – AS220 (late show)
11/10 Brooklyn, NY – Music Hall of Williamsburg
11/11 Boston, MA – Royale
11/12 Newport, RI – Newport Blues Café
11/13 Newport, RI – Newport Blues Café

* = w/ Jason Isbell
+ = w/ J. Roddy Walston and the Business
# = w/ Blitzen Trapper & Malcomb Holcolmbe
% = w/ Phosphorescent
! = w/ Band of Heathens

 

Watch: New Fran Healy (of Travis) Video

 

Song “Buttercups” taken from debut solo album Wreckorder, due next week.

By Blurt Staff

 

Fran Healy, lead singer and main songwriter of Scotland combo Travis, has his debut solo
album WRECKORDER set for an October 5th release on Ryko, and he’s got the video for the first single, “Buttercups,” set to go. Check it out, and watch BLURT for a review of the album very soon. Did we mention that both Neko Case and Paul McCartney guest on the rec?

 

 

Metric Crowdsources New Remix Album

 

 

Top 10 remixers to be
awarded $1000 prize. Winners announced early next year.

 

 

By Blurt Staff

 

Metric have partnered with Indaba Music, Topspin and RCRDLBL.com
to launch a remix program designed to source an entire album’s worth of remixes
of the songs from their album Fantasies. The album, which was shortlisted for the 2009 Polaris Music Prize for Album of
the Year, and won the Alternative Album of the Year at the 2010 Juno Awards,
will undergo a reinvention at the hands of
Indaba
Music’s musician community. The band will pick its favorite remixes of each of the
album’s 10 tracks.

 

 

Metric believes that directly
engaging their fans, as well as Indaba Music’s community, will provide them an
ideal forum for sourcing remixes while at the same time deepening the
connection with their supporters. The band’s decision to self-release Fantasies in 2009 in approximately 20 countries across 5 continents without the
backing of a record label marked the beginning of a new chapter in their career
and has given rise to an explosive growth in the band’s worldwide profile and
popularity. Despite becoming the first band to achieve their first ever top 20
hit at US commercial radio without label support (a feat they repeated with
their second single) and a slew of other impressive accolades, above all else
Metric credits the tenacious support of their fans as being most responsible
for taking the band to new heights.

 

 

Says Metric, “We’ve always
believed that if we could just cut out all the extraneous middle men and
interact as directly as possible with our fans that we would win. The more we
engage with them, the better we do. The more we do it, the better it gets! With
people in 205 countries and territories able to participate in remixing Fantasies,
this will become the thing we’ve done with the furthest reach to date. We know
how many talented musicians there are around the world that are just looking
for a chance to be heard and this seemed like a good way to potentially offer
some of them an opportunity to see that happen!  We’re super excited to
see what’s going to come of it!”

 

 

Not only is the program
forward-thinking for the band, the program also marks a first for Indaba Music,
as Topspin Media’s direct-to-consumer sales technology will be incorporated
into all Metric remix competition pages. A long standing Metric collaborator,
Topspin’s involvement will enable fans and musicians to purchase advanced stem
packs straight from each contest page for $1.99/song, providing musicians with
dozens of isolated stems, and thus enhanced sonic flexibility. Additionally, as
with all Indaba Music remix programs, the competition will also offer a free
basic set of stems for each song.

 

 

Nate Lew Head of Marketing,
Business Development at Indaba Music said, “More than a third of Indaba
Music’s users spend over $1,000 annually on instruments, equipment and offline
tools. Clearly they invest in their craft, and we’re thrilled to be working
with Metric and Topspin to offer our global community of musicians, many of
whom are active remixers, with a musician-specific version of the Fantasies record
(via advanced stems), as well as an incredible career opportunity.”

 

 

Entrants should register at http://www.indabamusic.com/studio_access/metric.