Monthly Archives: August 2008

Basia Bulat For September Tour

 

Love that hat…

By Blurt Staff

 

The ever-luscious Basia Bulat will be supporting her debut
album Oh, My Darling (Rough Trade Records) with a short US tour this
September.   The first date is in Louisville,
KY on September 11 and the tour winds up on
the 20th of the month in Cambridge,
MA.    She will be
headlining The Highline Ballroom in New
York City on September 19.

 

Since the release of Oh, My Darling, Bulat and her
band have been crisscrossing the US
touring on their own and with the likes of DeVotchKa and St.
Vincent. Meanwhile, she was recently nominated in her home country
of   Canada
for this year’s Polaris Prize (the winner will be announced on September 29).

 

Don’t know much about Bulat? Here’s the scoop from the
label:

 

  

 

Since
the age of three, Basia has been sitting on piano stools and trying to hammer
things out. It started with her piano-teacher mum, but along the way Basia’s
picked up guitar, autoharp, banjo, ukulele, sax and flute. In high school her
instrument was the upright bass – a lone girl among “eight-foot-tall guys in
the back of the orchestra, goofing off with the tubas”. There’s a sense of play
that still suffuses her music, jostling under the songs of regret and love,
want and joy. 

 

 

In
the summer of 2006, Basia went to live in Montreal.
Through friends she met Howard Bilerman, an engineer and co-owner of the famed
Hotel 2 Tango studio. Basia cashed some student loans to record with Bilerman.
 It was ultimately these rough early takes, hoarse with excitement that
formed the bulk of
Oh, My Darling. Despite the original intention, these
tracks are breathless, thirsty, dislodged from dreary nostalgia. There are
strings, yes, and acoustic guitar, but also a frantic drum-kit gallop; the
influence of the spirits of wild Jeff Magnum, big-voiced Odetta, Emily Dickinson
and all those boisterous soul-music singles. It’s this spark that sets Basia
Bulat apart from the raft of typical singer-songwriters.

 

 

 

 

Basia Bulat Tour
Dates:

 

 

Thu 9/11 Louisville KY
The 9:30 Listening Room

Fri 9/12 Chattanooga, TN
Nightfall Concert Series 

Sat 9/13 Decatur, GA
Eddie’s Attic 

Sun 9/14 Asheville,
NC Grey Eagle

Tue 9/16 Charlottesville, VA
(HOLD)

Wed 9/17 Washington, DC
DC9

Thu 9/18 Philadelphia, PA The Angel

Fri 9/19 New York, NY
Highline Ballroom 

Sat 9/20 Cambridge,
MA Middle East Upstairs

 

 

Leaker of Guns N’ Roses Songs Busted

 

 

The MAN comes a-knockin’ for that Antiquiet kid…
By Fred Mills

We’re not saying that just because BLURT recently published a full-on feature analyzing all the proposed Guns N’ Roses tracks from the forthcoming Chinese Democracy that have found their way to the internet (see “Leaked Peek,” Aug. 1) that it meant the federal authorities ramped up their interest in cracking down on the so-called pirates. At that point there had already been a big dust-up between the Gunners camp and the website Antiquiet (www.antiquiet.com) regarding one of their main bloggers, Kevin “Skwerl” Cogill, who’d posted a number of the high-quality studio tracks to the site; a cease-and-desist resulted in Antiquiet removing the material, and you can read our account HERE.

Yesterday, though, FBI agents placed Cogill, 27, under arrest under suspicion of violating federal copyright laws. Cogill admitted to the agents to having posted the songs to the website, an arrest affidavit reveals. He was taken into custody at his home in Culver City, Calif. and was scheduled for arraignment in a Los Angeles U.S. District Court.

Meanwhile Antiquiet, in a posting titled “Abbie Hoffman, Where Are You?” (accompanied by a pretty funny, over-the-top photo of a SWAT team conducting a military-style exercise), blogger Johnny Firecloud wrote:

“Skwerl got himself hauled in by the FBI today over this whole GNR / Chinese Democracy leak fiasco, which seems to mean that people take this whole copyright thing pretty seriously. We weren’t going to make a big spectacle of this, since it’s obviously a pretty serious situation, but the plankton hacks over at the Los Angeles Times managed to pick up on the story and run it a highly suspicious impressive two hours after the incident went down. So here we are.

“In all likelihood, he’ll be back fighting the good fight from his couch by this evening. But anyone who feels like getting as equally theatrical as the feds (who were anything but quiet and graceful during their ass-crack-of-dawn descent on Skwerl’s sleepy house this morning) can come show their support with Britney and I today at the LA District Court on 255 East Temple. 2 PM. Bring your MP3 players.

“In the meantime, well-wishes in the comments, lawyer-fund donations in the PO Box, and on we rock.”

***

As of this writing there have been over 40 responses posted to the Antiquiet site, most of them expressing support for and solidarity with Cogill. Some of them pointed out the obvious, that he clearly violated copyright laws and this shouldn’t come as any surprise, but just the same… can you spell OVERKILL?

If Axl Rose approved or instigated of all this, and it’s likely that his lawyers had a lot to do with pushing the Feds into acting, then he should be ashamed. Perhaps he should take a lesson from when Metallica’s Lars Ulrich sanctioned the authorities coming down on file-sharers: for a good while, Ulrich was the most despised man in the metal community. Not that Axl Rose gives a shit…

Rodriguez Comes Alive!

 

Does first NYC show ever at Joe’s Pub next week.

By Fred
Mills

 

 

In my recently-published review of
Light In The Attic’s amazing reissue of late ‘60s folk/funk/psych legend
Rodriguez’ Cold Fact album, I noted
that as the songwriter continues to be discovered by new fans and new
generations, he’s gradually found his footing as a performing entity (following
years of obscurity). “Will the American buying public be similarly
tweaked and treated to some of Rodriguez concert magic?,” I mused?

 

Well, as it turns out, following a low-key performance a few
weeks ago marking his first show in the U.S.,
the man will be doing a show in New
York. Next week, in fact: Wednesday,
September 3rd, Rodriguez will play an intimate show at the world famous Joe’s
Pub in New York
as a part of Wax Poetics Magazine
launch party.

 

It takes place at 9:30, and you
better get your tickets in advance: only 150 people will be admitted.
Cratediggers, start your engines!

 

In addition to BLURT, Rodriguez’s Cold
Fact
has already received rave reviews from print publications such as MOJO, UNCUT, Spin, The Fader, and many
more, as well as online music sites like Aquarium Drunkard, Pitchfork, I Rock
Cleveland and You Ain’t No Picasso. Clearly, there is a buzz afoot about this
man and his cult-fave album. That’s a stone cold fact.

Rodriguez on the web:

www.lightintheattic.net/releases/rodriguez/

 

Animal Collective Pal Rusty Santos in Present

 

Hauling ethos over its shoulder and trampling
musical boundaries.

By Blurt Staff

 

 

The Present
is the new music project of New York
musician and producer Rusty Santos
(Panda Bear Person Pitch, Born Ruffians Red Yellow & Blue,
Animal Collective Sung Tongs). Described by one band who worked
with him as a hyper boy genius, Rusty has always fixed his attention on
producing music that is experimentally rich while remaining accessible. By
attempting to create music that arises unconsciously through improvisation, The
Present’s debut album, World I See, is set for release in the US on LOAF Recordings (The Chap,
Johan Agebjorn/Sally Shapiro, Black Devil Disco Club).

 

 

 

According to the label, the recordhauls this ethos over its shoulders as it tramples on musical
boundaries and preconceptions, whilst leaving an album that is still capable of
relating musically and emotionally to a wide audience.”

 

 

 

After many years and variant modes of collaboration, Rusty
formed together with Jesse Lee and Mina, who bring a plethora of extra
dimensions to the sound of The Present. Mina’s background in classical piano
and the love of Japanese traditional songs meets at intense and imaginative
levels with the expressive attitude of the band, while the long standing
musical partnership between Jesse and Rusty, which began when they were in high
school together, provides the cemented sound giving the songs one voice and the
band the sound of a single instrument.

 

 

Adds the label, “Though the instruments on World I See aren’t necessarily new (the basic elements are piano, guitar and drums), guided
by intuition the band attempt to make timeless music by using the most
minimalist methods in innovative new ways. The result of capturing and
developing these sounds is the beautifully elegant yet emotionally powerful
sound of The Present.”

The Present World I See Track Listing:
1. Heavens On Ice
2. World I See
3. Love Melody
4. Symbols On High
5. Africanized Beatniks
6. The Hunt

 

Tijuana Hercules – Down In the Bottom Lines

BLURT’s old pal John Forbes (ex-Phantom 309/Dirt/Mount
Shasta) is at it again – this time with a killer new animated video for his
band Tijuana Hercules. It’s rendered in his signature “ultra modern surrealist
primitive” style, which make sense because Forbes himself is an ultra modern
surrealist primitive!

The tune “Down in the Bottom Lines” comes from Tijuana Hercules’
new platter The Almanack of Bad Luck,
an awesomely thumpin’ slice of minimalist blooze and ragged glory rawk, powered
of course by Forbes’ coal-lungs vocals and larger than life persona. (You can check out the band’s music at www.myspace.com/tijuanahercules,
natch.)

From the Jam Announces Tour, CD/DVD

 

 

 

 

Meet the Mod-stepfather.

By Randy Harward

 

So scab-staffed reunion tours aren’t just for classic rockers and hair metal bands.

 

Original frontman Paul Weller thinks reuniting The Jam would be “sad” and “embarrasing,” and swears his family would have to be destitute before he considered such a thing. Yet it’s happened. Sorta. In late 2007 and early 2008, founding members Bruce Foxton (bass/vocals) and Rick Buckler (drums)–joined by new members David Moore (guitar, keys) and Russell Hastings (vocals, guitar)–toured in the UK and US as From the Jam. Now they’ve packaged the London show as a CD/DVD titled A First Class Return (Invisible Hands Music). Here’s a clip.

 

 

As usual with these reunions (like The New Cars), From the Jam plays the hits and promises new stuff. Of course, the hits sound good enough–and that’s good enough for some. But to fans, Weller–his songs, his voice, his presence–was The Jam. Though Hastings (shall we call him the Mod-stepfather?) sounds a bit like his predecessor, and sorta looks like him, it’s just not the same.

 

Not that they aren’t trying very, very hard. For this tour, they’ve pared the lineup down to a trio, just like the old days. From the Jam nonetheless feels like Eton shit.

 

Tour dates:

 

09/23:  Foxboro, MA @ Showcase Live
09/24:  Washington, DC @ State Theater
09/25:  Asbury Park, NJ @ Stone Pony
09/26:  New York, NY @ Blender Theater at Gramercy
09/27:  Philadelphia, PA @ Theatre of Living Arts
09/29:  Montreal, QC @ Club Soda – Montreal Pop Festival
10/01:  Toronto, ON @ Opera House
10/02:  Buffalo, NY @ Town Ballroom
10/03:  Cleveland, OH @ Beachland Ballroom
10/04:  Chicago, IL @ Abbey Pub
10/06:  Denver, CO @ Cervantes Masterpiece Ballroom
10/08:  San Francisco, CA @ Great American Music Hall
10/09:  Los Angeles, CA @ El Rey Theatre
10/10:  Pomona, CA @ Glass House
10/11:  San Diego, CA @ Brick by Brick
(photo: Paul Brown)

Leaker of Guns N' Roses Songs Busted

 

 

The MAN comes a-knockin’ for that Antiquiet kid…
By Fred Mills

We’re not saying that just because BLURT recently published a full-on feature analyzing all the proposed Guns N’ Roses tracks from the forthcoming Chinese Democracy that have found their way to the internet (see “Leaked Peek,” Aug. 1) that it meant the federal authorities ramped up their interest in cracking down on the so-called pirates. At that point there had already been a big dust-up between the Gunners camp and the website Antiquiet (www.antiquiet.com) regarding one of their main bloggers, Kevin “Skwerl” Cogill, who’d posted a number of the high-quality studio tracks to the site; a cease-and-desist resulted in Antiquiet removing the material, and you can read our account HERE.

Yesterday, though, FBI agents placed Cogill, 27, under arrest under suspicion of violating federal copyright laws. Cogill admitted to the agents to having posted the songs to the website, an arrest affidavit reveals. He was taken into custody at his home in Culver City, Calif. and was scheduled for arraignment in a Los Angeles U.S. District Court.

Meanwhile Antiquiet, in a posting titled “Abbie Hoffman, Where Are You?” (accompanied by a pretty funny, over-the-top photo of a SWAT team conducting a military-style exercise), blogger Johnny Firecloud wrote:

“Skwerl got himself hauled in by the FBI today over this whole GNR / Chinese Democracy leak fiasco, which seems to mean that people take this whole copyright thing pretty seriously. We weren’t going to make a big spectacle of this, since it’s obviously a pretty serious situation, but the plankton hacks over at the Los Angeles Times managed to pick up on the story and run it a highly suspicious impressive two hours after the incident went down. So here we are.

“In all likelihood, he’ll be back fighting the good fight from his couch by this evening. But anyone who feels like getting as equally theatrical as the feds (who were anything but quiet and graceful during their ass-crack-of-dawn descent on Skwerl’s sleepy house this morning) can come show their support with Britney and I today at the LA District Court on 255 East Temple. 2 PM. Bring your MP3 players.

“In the meantime, well-wishes in the comments, lawyer-fund donations in the PO Box, and on we rock.”

***

As of this writing there have been over 40 responses posted to the Antiquiet site, most of them expressing support for and solidarity with Cogill. Some of them pointed out the obvious, that he clearly violated copyright laws and this shouldn’t come as any surprise, but just the same… can you spell OVERKILL?

If Axl Rose approved or instigated of all this, and it’s likely that his lawyers had a lot to do with pushing the Feds into acting, then he should be ashamed. Perhaps he should take a lesson from when Metallica’s Lars Ulrich sanctioned the authorities coming down on file-sharers: for a good while, Ulrich was the most despised man in the metal community. Not that Axl Rose gives a shit…

THE END CREDITS: The Crazy Homicides

 

 

THE CRAZY HOMICIDES: Twilight of the Old Brooklyn

Waxing nostalgic for a stylish street gang and the spirit of the city they tormented.

 

 

Last
month I took a car service into Manhattan from my neighborhood in
Brooklyn. The driver was a Dominican or Puerto Rican about my age. The
conversation quickly embarked on “the changing of the neighborhood,”
the most common form of small talk in NY since ‘Where were you on
9-11?’ This stroll down memory lane turned into a’Where are they now?’ of a peculiar group of Brooklyn residents in the late 70’s-mid 80’s: The Crazy Homicides.

 

You could easily pick them out all over Park
Slope, Sunset Park and Gowanus, cause they had a specific style. They
all wore Civil War-type, Union cavalry hats–the kind with a small
bill and a flat droopy top, and motorcycle-type leather jackets. My driver gleefully boasted, “My brother was one of their leaders. He
was a very, very funny guy.” I was stunned and shot back, “I was
mugged once by a group of the them, and the one who did all the
talking, was in fact, very, very funny!” The driver, without any
sign of discomfort retorted “yep, that was probably my brother.”

 

He continued with a gushing description of one of his brother’s top
career accomplishments–a victorious battle about eight blocks from where
my recording studio was then, and is now. “[The rival gang] left
the pool hall and were hanging on 10th St. My brother knew that they
were waiting for more guys, so when they were about 30, he sent 20 of
his guys down from 5th Ave., and another 20 up from 4th Ave. He had them
trapped–six or seven of them ended up in the hospital.” Ahhhh–epic
Brooklyn history.

 

So, this is how my own “funny” encounter with The Crazy Homicides went, 27 years ago.

 

I
was walking near my recording studio with Bill Laswell (Material, and
major record producer). He was my studio/roommate at the time. Three
Crazy Homicides approached from behind: “Hello, we’re Brooklyn muggers,
and you have to give us your money.” The put-on announcer voice was
disarming. I turn around to see three guys with big smiles, grasping
big screwdrivers, in Union cavalry hats. The jovial tone made me
decline the demand for money, and we kept walking.

 

Me and Laswell made
the mistake of starting to talk about music. “Oh, artists,” the funny
guy says. “Now we’ll have to throw you in the Gowanus Canal.” The canal
was, and is today, a fetid and toxic body of water on the edge of Park
Slope. I quickly coughed up $40.

 

The mugging really ate Laswell
up. A couple weeks later, we had seminal hip-hop artist Afrika
Bambaataa at the studio. Bam, as everyone calls him, had himself been
the leader of a gang in The Bronx called The Black Spades, that he
later transformed into the pacifist and utopian Zulu Nation. There
always were a handful of young devotees from the group following him
around. Laswell had the vision of a great moment, The Zulu Nation
taking an assertive stand against The Crazy Homicides in a defiant
display of confidence. So, off they all go for “a walk,” unbeknownst to
Bam, to find the Homicides.

 

 

Laswell spots a few of them in a Blimpie.
“Yo, why we goin’ to Blimpie?” Bam inquires.

 

 

Now Bam had quite a
gregarious style, as you might imagine an African king–leopard cap,
lots of  jewelry, a staff. As they walk into Blimpie, the Homicides
turn to face Laswell and Bam in a moment of silence. Then one of them
bursts out: “Yo, it’s Mr. T !” The two watch stonefaced as the
Homicides burst into a torrent of laughter, practically falling out of
their seats. “Hey, Mr. T!”

 

 

(For those too young to remember, Mr T.
was a very popular black action movie and TV star who sported a heavy
gold jewelry style, years before mainstream rappers like LL Cool J and
Run DMC wore heavy gold chains.)

 

 

Back in the cab–2008–two
men from Park Slope, Brooklyn are reminiscing about a neighborhood
that’s practically been erased from memory. I found myself lamenting the
demise of a violent neighborhood gang, who had style and humor, and in
that sense seemed kind of smart. We arrived at my destination, and the
tone in the cab changed.

 

Sadness overtook the driver’s face
as he says, “Sorry about the $40.” I don’t think the look of sadness was
about the $40, because he still charged me $30 for the ride. I think
that in apologizing, it became clear that we’d moved forward, but that
there’s a trade-off. And that part of us that is mythologized with
Jesse James and the OK Corral, and Don Corleone in The Godfather, is
really just below the skin, periodically finding a toehold in our
aspiring utopias.

 

By coincidence, I decided to buy a new lock
for my door tomorrow, because I didn’t feel safe enough. I think that
ties it together nicely.

 

Martin Bisi is an American producer and songwriter. Visit him at
www.myspace.com/theendcredits.

 

 

CHANNEL GUIDE: Thursday Music

 

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. For a comprehensive hour-by-hour
listing, go to the VH1 Rock On TV site.
Note that for certain channels, shows frequently repeat during the day on or
subsequent days.

 

 

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

 

8:30 AM MOJO: London
Live!:  Morrissey , The Futureheads , Phoenix , Pink

 

11:00 AM RAVE HD: Other Voices: Sinéad O’Connor , The Answer
, Juno Falls , Seasick Steve

 

12:00 PM VH1C: Rock Fest: Judas Priest

 

1:30 PM FUSE: Loaded: Kid Rock

 

4:00 PM Biography: *NSYNC

 

4:15 PM Showtime 2: Beastie Boys Awesome; I F**kin’ Shot
That!

 

5:00 PM CSPAN: Democratic National Convention 2008: Michael
McDonald , Stevie Wonder , Sheryl Crow , Will.I.Am , John Legend , Jennifer
Hudson

 

7:05 PM Starz Edge: High Fidelity (2000)

 

9:00 PM RAVE HD: From The Basement: Beck , Jamie Lidell ,
Jarvis Cocker

 

11:00 PM MTV2: Top VMA Opening Moments: Madonna , Bruce
Springsteen , Kid Rock , Britney Spears , Christina Aguilera , Jay-Z

 

11:00 PM Ovation: Bonefish Grill’s Notes From The Road: Ben
Folds

 

11:35 PM NBC: The Tonight Show with Jay Leno: Missy Higgins

 

12:05 AM ABC: Jimmy Kimmel Live: Staind

 

12:35 AM NBC: Late Night with Conan O’Brien: Lykke Li

 

 

 

 

 

Live Exclusives: Aesop Rock, Broken Social Scene

 

All the concert news
‘n’ reviews that’s fit to print.

By Blurt Staff

 

More concert coverage from your friendly neighborhood BLURT
– this time, we’ve got Aesop Rock in D.C. and Broken Social Scene in Salt Lake City.

 

 

 

 

  • *Jamie Gadette was on hand in SLC on August 21 for a free show from Canadian collective Broken Social Scene – and our
    correspondent also got to hang with the band at the aftershow. “Later that evening,” writes Gadette, “Broken
    Social Scene left the venue to dance with locals at a nearby bar featuring Ted
    Dancin, an eclectic DJ night. Watching the scruffy Canadians get crunk to James
    Brown, T.Rex and Biggie Smalls was surreal, to say the least. Who says white
    men can’t jump?”
  • *The night before, Roxana Hadadi and ace
    shutterbug Adam Fried caught Aesop Rock, Rob Sonic and the crew for a hip-hop
    throwdown in Washington.
    “Underground rap was out in full force – wordy lyrics, New York pride and all –
    and the packed crowd was beside itself the entire time, screaming along with
    every song like some kind of new hip-hop gospel,” advises Hadadi, who we
    suspect was down in front with the screamers.

 

 

 

 

Check ‘em out at the provided links, or simply scroll down
the BLURT front page to the reviews section. We’ve also got new book, DVD and
CD reviews being added daily.

 

 

[Aesop Rock photo by Adam Fried]