Monthly Archives: December 2011

Watch New Ting Tings Video; LP Due March

 

Inspired by the
Beastie Boys’ Paul’s Boutique, eh? Check out the video for new single below.

 

By Blurt Staff

 

It’s hard to guage just yet whether or not the sophomore
album from Britain’s Ting Tings (Jules De Martino and Katie White), titled Sounds From Nowheresville (Columbia) and
due out in the US in March (exact date tba), will rank among the proverbial “highly
anticipated” releases of 2012. Since their much-buzzed, heavily-hyped,
Grammy-nominated 2008 debut We Started
Nothing
, featuring hit singles “That’s Not My Name,” “Shut Up And Let Me
Go” and  “Great DJ,” a lot of the buzz
and hype has definitely subsided. And 4 years in the modern era is an eternity;
everyone’s moved on to, like Deadmau5 or something.

 

At any rate, here’s what we are being told about the band
and the album:

 

“The Ting Tings have
fought a hard battle to find themselves back at square one: emotionally,
earnestly and even for a moment, geographically. Despite their mainstream
success, they aimed to stay true to the punk ethos that had always defined and
inspired the music they created together. 
A year and half after making a record (in East Berlin) and scrapping
it,  and making another one (in Southern
Spain) and loving it, they are ready to share what they’ve been fashioning with
their fans. The move from the thawing ice of Berlin
that homed the writing to their first global onslaught to the dustbowl of late
Spring in Murcia, Southern Spain, proved a success and the band were
instantly enthused and cranked into fourth gear.

 

“At the start of 2011,
The Ting Tings were pointed in the direction of the unequivocal classic Beastie
Boys album, Paul’s Boutique. Having played the record many times before, they
were overawed when they delved back into the album and discovered its many
nuances. If they needed a bounce-off point to set their muse free, this was it.
What they had learned most implicitly was a freedom to move around musically.
Hence the title: Sounds From Nowheresville.  Musically, the album has
really let The Ting Tings rip.”

 

 

The current press release goes on to namecheck, in addition
to the Beasties, the likes of OMD, the Tom Tom Club, the Rezillos and, uh, TLC.
Well, 4 out of 5 ain’t bad! First single “Hang It Up” is billed as displaying “their
new, expansive palette, set against a firing two chord guitar riff,” so check
it out, below (it actually does sound like Beastie Boys in place), along with a
Bag Raiders remix for the track “Silence.”

 

A tour is being planned for next spring as well.

 

 

 

 

Merry XXmas from The xx

 

Demo of “Open Eyes” unveiled just in time for the holiday.

By Fred Mills

With buzzband The xx currently working on the followup to 2009’s The xx debut, it remains to be seen whether or not the young Londoners can avoid the dreaded sophomore slump, particularly considering that when the record does get finished and released it will probably have been a 3-year gap. Everyone’s moved on since then, listening to, say, Florence & the Machine.

At any rate, just to make sure they get their name back into the press and onto the blogs, they’ve offered up a demo of new song “Open Eyes” and yo can check it out below.

 

Vid: Full 3hr 12-21 Guns N’ Roses Show

 

Band performed Dec. 21
in L.A.

 

By Fred Mills

 

Why yes, yes – that IS Axl Rose above, looking like a somewhat
portly cross between Jim Morrison, Kid Rock and the homeless guy who hangs
around near the entrance of Walgreens, asking for spare change so he can get
his “prescription filled.” No matter
– it’s also proof that the Guns N’ Roses mainman is alive and well and still
willing to kick out the jams.

 

The Gunners performed Dec. 21 at the Forum in L.A., and
needless to say the video cameras were out in force, including one wielded by a
YouTuber going by the handle “Mraxlfuckinrose1985,” appropriately enough (he’s obviously
a big GNR fan, given that name, and he’s also got a slew of Slash videos posted
to his YouTube channel).

 

The entire show has been uploaded, if you can believe that. There
are plenty of rough spots here and there, but the video also appears to be the
result of multiple cameras and some quick but serviceable post-event editing.
The sound, for its part, is above-average bootleg quality and quite listenable.
Take a look quick, before it gets taken down… Oh, in case you were wondering: “Sweet Child O’ Mine” kicks in at about the 1 hour and 25 minute mark…

 

 

 

Report: Scratch Acid/Dinosaur Jr Live in Portland

 

At the Crystal Ballroom in Portland, Ore.,
December 16, a pair of postpunk icons delivers the goods a quarter century
after the fact.


By Tim Hinely

 

This was the
show of the year a far I was concerned. Also on the bill was Portland legends Pierced Arrows, featuring
Fred and Toody Cole from Dead Moon, but unfortunately I was not able to get
there in time to catch them. Years ago I caught Scratch Acid at a club in
Philly called Revival, on April 29, 1987. On that evening vocalist David Yow
was sick as a dog and asked if anyone in the crowd had any antibiotics (no one
did) and with that launched into an incredible version of “Mary Had a Little
Drug Problem.” Now, on this night, nearly 25 years later, they launched head
first into the same song to open with the set but not without Yow first
addressing the crowd with “This had better be good.” 

 

And it was. Very, very good. They’re all excellent
player and Yow’s prowess as a vocalist (with both S.A. and later the Jesus Lizard)
doesn’t need to be mentioned here, but when my pal turned to me midset and
said, “Man, (Rey) Washam, and (David Wm.) Sims are the greatest rhythm section
in rock history. And I don’t mean indie rock, I mean rock history,”  he was dead
serious (and just may be right).  Also
torn to bits that night were stellar versions of “Cannibal,” “Owner’s Lament,”
“Crazy Dan,” “Amicus,” “Damned for All Time,” “For Crying Out Loud” and
plenty  more.  For those who missed it, pray they do one
more tour. [Ed. Note: no immediate plans
for that, based on comments from both Yow and Sims in the recent BLURT
interview
.
]

 

 

Prior to
Dinosaur Jr going on the band was interviewed by Henry Rollins for about 15
minutes. Rollins said it was Dinosaur Jr’s idea to do it and that he jumped at
the chance. He asked some interesting questions about what the transition was
like for the band from their 1st to their 2nd record but
the best part was when he stated that music was the most difficult art form to
which Lou Barlow laughed and said, “”What??!! Oh man…I think it’s the easiest!” 

 

About 15  minutes later the reformed Dino Jr came back
out and performed their entire 3rd record,  Bug,
from start to finish, after opening up with non-album tracks  “Keep the Glove” and “In  Jar.” I’m still not sure why they didn’t tour
for their amazing You’re Living All Over
Me
, easily their best, but still, Bug is a worthy record to revisit, especially that amazing first half – and yes
“Freak Scene,” “No Bones,” “They Always Come” and “Let It Ride” all sounded awesome.
For the set-ending “Don’t” (the one that Barlow sings, where he screams “Why
don’t you like me?!” over and over again) he asked if anyone from the crowd
wanted to come up and sing…and asked …and kept
asking. He then said it had to be someone who looked like him and finally a
thin, bespectacled kid came up and shredded his vocals for about 15 minutes
which was our cue to head home.

 

The night was as
a good as advertised though, two bands in their prime 25 years both came back
and showed the kids they can still deliver. And they did. And hopefully will again.

 

 

Huge Elvis Museum Opens… in Dusseldorf!

Forget visiting Graceland for Christmas. Hey, with the value of the Euro
currently in the toilet, now’s a good time to book that plane flight to Germany!

 

By Blurt Staff

 

Elvis is definitely in the building — in Germany — featuring the largest private
collection of memorabilia outside the US. Presley’s public and inner life
are documented, with a special focus on his years as a soldier in Germany, in
1,800 pieces from his career and 2,000 original pictures and writings, with
many pieces on display for the first time.  

 
Düsseldorf, Germany — A new museum housing one of the world’s largest private
collections of Elvis Presley memorabilia, and the largest outside of the US, is
now open to the public and offers new insights into his professional and
private life with pieces that have never before been shown in public. The
museum is a new attraction in Düsseldorf’s center, the historic Old Town,
home to several world-class museums and the “longest bar in the world” (260
bars, pubs, and breweries in under a mile).

The extensive collection sheds new light on the artist’s career during the
1940s-70s, with more than 1,800 original pieces and documents, among them his
first order for a single and his transfer papers from Sun Records to RCA Victor
at a fee of $40,000, an astonishing amount at the time and a move that
contributed to his becoming a superstar.

The exhibit also illuminates little-known aspects of his inner life, such as
his humor, faith, and intellect, and offers signs and explanations of his
personal development in visual arts and spirituality.  Examples include
personal notes he made in his favorite book The Prophet, by the philosopher
Khalil Gibran, as well as his mother’s journal entries and the personal
appointment book he kept in 1959 in
Bad Nauheim, Germany.

The museum owns a great deal of memorabilia from the time Presley spent in
Germany, serving in the army from 1958-60, including items Presley left behind
when he returned to the US in 1960, such as jewelry, furniture, clothing, and
other home and personal objects. The records he had shipped to himself from the
US to Germany, for
example, reveal his personal taste in music at the time, and documents and
letters from those years reveal his thoughts and emotions.

The exhibit also includes 2,000 original photographs that show stations of
Presley’s entire life, and even includes his last hand-written letter from
August 15, 1977.  Various aspects of his life will be highlighted with
changing configurations and showcases of this extensive collection.

For more information on the new Elvis
Presley Museum
in Düsseldorf and exhibit hours, visit www.elvis-duesseldorf.de

 

 

Radio Birdman Reissues, Box Set Due?

 

Slew of unreleased
material being eyed, along with a classic live concert and possibly a DVD.

 

By Fred Mills

 

Along with the recent arrival in the mail of concert
recording Radio Birdman Live in Texas (go here to read the BLURT review), we were chuffed to get word that 2012
promises to bring a slew of Birdman archival releases. According to Career
Records and Crying Sun, “ultimate reissues” of the group’s early records – 1976’s
Burn My Eye EP, 1977’s Radios Appear and 1981’s Living Eyes – that will feature fresh
mixes from the original master tapes.

 

Also slated for inclusion: “20+ studio outtakes as well as a
superlative 70 minutes of their historic December 1977 Paddington Town Hall
concert.” All this is previous unreleased (much of it has eluded bootleggers as
well, although the Paddington show surfaces from time to time in varying
quality), and hopes are for a DVD boasting “vintage footage.” Plans are for a
limited edition box set collection all this material at first, followed by
individual releases.

 

Brian Wilson Gives Fans Free Xmas Gift

 

Version of “Little
Saint Nick” that was left off this year’s Christmas album reissue.

 

By Fred Mills

 

Long suffering Beach Boys fans got a special gift this week
from BB maestro Brian Wilson: the original, more-or-less unreleased version of “Little
Saint Nick” from 1963 that was cut prior to the ’64 recording sessions that
would yield 1964’s The Beach Boys’
Christmas Album
.

 

Wilson
has posted the track at his BrianWilson.com blog,
noting that he “later took
this backing track and used it as the foundation for the song ‘Drive In’ for
the 1964 All Summer Long album.
 This version with the ‘Little St. Nick’ lyrics remained unreleased until
Mark Linett discovered it while preparing the first CD releases of the Capitol
Beach Boys catalog, and it first saw the light of day as a bonus track on a now
out of print CD edition of The Beach Boys Christmas Album.”

 

As you may remember, Capitol reissued the band’s back
catalog in 1992, and the CDs typically included a slew of bonus tracks – but after
those editions went out of print and Capitol got around to a fresh round of
reissues, the extra material went missing. That’s the case with this year’s CD
reissue of the holiday record; it reproduces the 12-song tracklisting of the
original ’64 LP, with no added bonuses, whereas the ‘92 CD had 16 cuts.

 

Listen to the “Little St.
Nick” tune at the above link. The Beach Boys recently announced a 50th anniversary reunion tour (with Brian included) plus a studio album for 2012.

 

Hall & Oates Phone Line Goes Viral

 

Hey, why not Dead
Kennedys? Or even GWAR?

 

By Fred Mills

 

You know, the one thing you probably forgot to put on your
Christmas list this year was a Hall & Oates ringtone, right? Right? C’mon,
folks, I know you’re out there – I can hear you humming “Maneater”…

 

At any rate, don’t laugh. As The Atlantic Wire reports, this week an entrepreneur established
the 719-26-OATES phone line, aka the “Callin’ Oates emergency hotline,” where,
we are advised, “you’ll be offered a handful of options
from the band’s catalog, such as, ‘To hear “Rich Girl,” please press 2,’ or, ‘To
hear ‘Private Eyes’ press 4′.”

 

Hoo boy. Er, no. Well, apparently overt 60,000 people said “yes”
as of Tuesday, which made the developer Michael Selvidge happy. He describes San Francisco based
Twilio company as offering an API for handling calls and texts, and this was
designed to draw attentioni to the startup. He told reporters, “I’m not trying
to make fun of Hall and Oates. I do sort of recognize the cheesy factor but I
actually do appreciate their music and I do actually listen to it and they are
one of my favorite bands. It’s definitely an affectionate thing.”

 

Incidentally, this doesn’t appear to specifically be a
ringtone-download service. As the article points out, calling the number just
allows you to reach the answering machine – plus, there’s no mention of whether
or not Hall or Oates or anyone associated with their publishing has approved of
or granted permission for any of this. So you’ll have to look elsewhere to get
an actual ringtone for your cellphone.

 

Watch Yuck, er, Oupa, Cover Smog

Lo-fi + lo-fi = no fi?

 

By Blurt Staff

 

British band Yuck’s Daniel Blumberg has a nom du rawk pseudonym, Oupa, and on his
recent Forget album released by
Boiled Egg, he covers a song by another artist who operates under a nom du rawk. That would be Bill
Callahan, aka Smog.

 

Check out the appropriately lo-fi video of the lo-fi song “It’s Rough,”
directed by Porcelain Raft, below.

 

Oupa – It’s Rough from Boiled Egg on Vimeo.

Hall & Oates Phone Line Goes Viral

 

Hey, why not Dead
Kennedys? Or even GWAR?

 

By Fred Mills

 

You know, the one thing you probably forgot to put on your
Christmas list this year was a Hall & Oates ringtone, right? Right? C’mon,
folks, I know you’re out there – I can hear you humming “Maneater”…

 

At any rate, don’t laugh. As The Atlantic Wire reports, this week an entrepreneur established
the 719-26-OATES phone line, aka the “Callin’ Oates emergency hotline,” where,
we are advised, “you’ll be offered a handful of options
from the band’s catalog, such as, ‘To hear “Rich Girl,” please press 2,’ or, ‘To
hear ‘Private Eyes’ press 4′.”

 

Hoo boy. Er, no. Well, apparently overt 60,000 people said “yes”
as of Tuesday, which made the developer Michael Selvidge happy. He describes San Francisco based
Twilio company as offering an API for handling calls and texts, and this was
designed to draw attentioni to the startup. He told reporters, “I’m not trying
to make fun of Hall and Oates. I do sort of recognize the cheesy factor but I
actually do appreciate their music and I do actually listen to it and they are
one of my favorite bands. It’s definitely an affectionate thing.”

 

Incidentally, this doesn’t appear to specifically be a
ringtone-download service. As the article points out, calling the number just
allows you to reach the answering machine – plus, there’s no mention of whether
or not Hall or Oates or anyone associated with their publishing has approved of
or granted permission for any of this. So you’ll have to look elsewhere to get
an actual ringtone for your cellphone.