Monthly Archives: May 2009

Vivian Girls Prep New LP For Sept.


How can everything go
wrong when everything’s going right for the trio?


By Blurt Staff


The Vivian Girls are set to drop their second album, Everything Goes Wrong, via In The Red on
September 8. To get things rolling, the band’s handlers want you to read a few
pertinent quotes from the gals – whose guitarist, Cassie Ramone, appears on the
cover of the latest issue of BLURT, incidentally – culled from a recent Pitchfork interview, conducted by Tom
Breihan. Read on…





“Last time, the album was really rushed,” says
guitarist Cassie Ramone. “We were just go, go, go, go. And now we’re
taking our time with every step of the process, making sure we’re really happy
with everything before we move on.”


With this band, though “taking our time” means
they’re taking six days to record the entire thing instead of the three days
they used for their first album. Ramone says, “We recorded 15 songs, but
if we put them all on the album, that’ll be an hour’s worth of music, so we’re
going to have to cut some of them out. Our last album was like 22 minutes, so
we figure if this album is longer than 44 minutes that’ll just be insane. It
would be twice as long.”

“We’re aiming for around 35 minutes,” adds bassist Kickball Katy. So
you’ll probably still be able to plow through the whole Vivian Girls album on
your morning commute.

On the first album, the two longest, slowest songs, “Tell the World”
and “Where Do You Run To”, were clear standouts. The band says
they’ll focus more on that side of their sound on the second album. “The
songs are longer,” says drummer Ali Koehler. “I think it’s moodier. I
think we have basically the same influences as on our first album, but with
more influences added.”

Katy elaborates: “We have a few songs that kind of sound like the Gun
Club. We have, like, a Neil Young-inspired song.”

Ali: “We’re using No Doubt’s hi-hat.”

Cassie: “That’s not actually an influence. We actually are using No
Doubt’s cymbals, though. That was an accident.”

But the band is still making sure to keep the raw, fun edge that animated the
first album. They’re recording most of their songs in single takes, they’re
producing it themselves, and they’re not bringing in any guests. “We
haven’t turned into perfectionists,” says Ali.

Tour Dates

Sat-Jul-04 Brooklyn, NY 979 Backyard / Captured Tracks & Woodsist Fest
Thu-Jul-09 Mexico City, MX El Almacén *
Thu-Jul-16 Toronto, ON Phoenix Theater #
Sun-Jul-19 Chicago, IL Pitchfork Music Festival
Fri-Jul-31 New York, NY Whitney Museum

# = w/ F***ED UP, WOMEN



Femi Kuti Shut Down By Nigerian Cops


Son of legendary
Afro-beat pioneer Fela Kuti target of possibly trumped-up accusations.


By Fred Mills


With an American tour slated to start just next week, Afro-beat
star Femi Kuti got some rude news earlier this week from Nigerian authorities:
they shut down his new Africa Shrine music venue, using as a basis somewhat
vague environmental laws and citing “noise nuisance, illegal street trading, indiscriminate parking,
blocking of access roads and obstruction of traffic.”


According to a
report filed by Agence France Presse, Yeni Kuti, eldest child of Fela
Kuti (who passed away from AIDS in 1997), and co-manager of the club with Femi,
said the state government gave the Kuti family 48 hours “to abate the
nuisance and restore the land to a conducive environment” but closed the
club less than 24 hours after the delivery of the letter. “I’m shocked,
indignant,” Yeni told reporters. “They [authorities in Lagos] dropped the note on Monday evening and
the next day at 9:00 am they had closed the place.”


No other details are known at this time.




Big Star Box Details, Tracks Announced


Seriously – this is
fan manna and critical catnip. Get those preorders in, folks.


By Fred Mills


Exactly one week ago your friendly neighborhood BLURT broke the news nationally that, as had been rumored, Rhino was
planning a Sept. 15 release for a 4-CD Big Star box set – at the time, the
label would not officially confirm the details, but sources close to the
project assured us that it was a “go.” You can read comments from those sources at the above link.


And indeed, today comes word from the label that the box has
been finalized and the title is Keep an
Eye on the Sky.
It’s stuffed to the gills with band rarities, demos and
outtakes as well as material cut by Alex Chilton and Chris Bell both solo and
in earlier bands Icewater and Rock
City. Included is a live
concert from January 1973 in Memphis,
and the Sister Lovers album (aka Big Star Third) is represented as well.


See the full tracklisting, below.


As we also told you previously, a Deluxe Edition release of
Chris Bell’s solo album I Am The Cosmos will be coming, and it’s set for September 14 from Rhino


You can read all the details, including notes about some of
the specific sources for the unreleased material, HERE at the Rhino site, and
also take a listen to the song “Lovely Day” which is being streamed. You can
also preorder the box at the site; it will retail for about 70 bucks.


This has been a public service announcement – with guitars.
And don’t forget, you read it here first.





Disc 1

01 Chris Bell: “Psychedelic Stuff”
02 Icewater: “All I See Is You”
03 Alex Chilton: “Every Day as We Grow Closer” (Original Mix)
03 Rock City: “Try Again” (Early Version)
04 Rock City: “The Preacher”
05 Feel
06 The Ballad of El Goodo (Alternate Mix) *
07 In the Street
08 Thirteen (Alternate Mix) *
09 Don’t Lie to Me
10 The India Song
11 When My Baby’s Beside Me (Alternate Mix) *
12 My Life Is Right (Alternate Mix) *
13 Give Me Another Chance (Alternate Mix) *
14 Try Again
15 Chris Bell: “Gone With the Light” *
16 Watch the Sunrise
17 ST 100/6 (Alternate Mix) *
18 In the Street (Second Recorded Version)
19 Feel (Early Mix) *
20 The Ballad of El Goodo (Alternate Lyrics)
21 The India Song (Alternate Version) *
22 Country Morn
23 I Got Kinda Lost (Demo)
24 Motel Blues (Demo) *

Disc 2

01 There Was a Light (Demo) *
02 Life Is White (Demo) *
03 What’s Going Ahn (Demo) *
04 O My Soul
05 Life Is White
06 Way Out West (Alternate Mix) *
07 What’s Going Ahn
08 You Get What You Deserve (Alternate Mix) *
09 Mod Lang (Alternate Mix)
10 Back of a Car (Alternate Mix) *
11 Daisy Glaze
12 She’s A Mover
13 September Gurls
14 Morpha Too (Alternate Mix) *
15 I’m in Love With a Girl
16 O My Soul (Alternate Version) *
17 Back of a Car (Demo)
18 Daisy Glaze (Alternate Take) *
19 She’s a Mover (Alternate Version)
20 Chris Bell: “I Am the Cosmos”
21 Chris Bell: “You and Your Sister”
22 Alex Chilton: “Blue Moon” (Demo) *
23 Alex Chilton: “Femme Fatale” (Demo) *
24 Alex Chilton: Thank You Friends” (Demo) *
25 Alex Chilton: “You Get What You Deserve” (Demo) *

Disc 3

01 Alex Chilton: “Lovely Day (aka Stroke It Noel)” (Demo)
02 Alex Chilton: “Downs” (Demo)
03 Alex Chilton: “Nightime” (Demo) *
04 Alex Chilton: “Jesus Christ” (Demo) *
05 Alex Chilton: “Holocaust” (Demo) *
06 Alex Chilton: “Take Care” (Demo) *
07 Alex Chilton: “Big Black Car” (Alternate Demo) *
08 Manana *
09 Jesus Christ
10 Femme Fatale
11 O, Dana
12 Kizza Me
14 You Can’t Have Me
15 Nightime
16 Dream Lover
17 Blue Moon
18 Take Care
19 Stroke It Noel
20 For You
21 Downs
22 Whole Lotta Shakin’ Goin’
23 Big Black Car
24 Holocaust
25 Kanga Roo
26 Thank You Friends
27 Till The End of the Day
28 Lovely Day *
29 Nature Boy

Disc 4 (Live at Lafayette’s Music Room, Memphis, TN)

01 When My Baby’s Beside Me *
02 My Life Is Right *
03 She’s a Mover *
04 Way Out West *
05 The Ballad of El Goodo *
06 In the Street *
07 Back of a Car *
08 Thirteen *
09 The India Song *
10 Try Again *
11 Watch the Sunrise *
12 Don’t Lie to Me *
13 Hot Burrito #2 *
14 I Got Kinda Lost *
15 Baby Strange *
16 Slut *
17 There Was a Light *
18 ST 100/6 *
19 Come On Now *
20 O My Soul *

* previously unreleased





Cheap Trick: New LP + “Sgt. Pepper’s” Disc


“It’s kind of like a
trilogy.” – Rick Nielsen, speaking to BLURT.


By Fred Mills


It’s not just a cheap trick: the mighty Cheap Trick is
laying plans to be the hippest thing happening this summer, with a new studio
album set to drop June 23, a song on in the new Transformers film, a summer tour with Def Leppard and (urk!) Poison
– well, one-third of that bill is hip, but that bill will certainly PAY the
bills – and, possibly, a concert disc from their 2007 Hollywood Bowl
performance where they covered the Beatles’ Sgt.


Regarding the new album, The
will be sold as a CD, LP and – get this – 8-track, exclusively at for the first month. The band is already taking pre-orders; details
at It’s the followup to 2006’s Rockford.


Speaking to BLURT several months ago prior to naming the
album, guitarist Rick Nielsen disclosed that the record was already finished,
joking, “It’s called The One After This
Next One
. No, I don’t have a title for it yet.” Clearly he was on the right
track, however, as “The Latest” seems to be a reasonable evolution from “The
One After This Next One.”


Nielsen paused to laugh, then added, “It’s kind of like a
trilogy: 3 songs, 3 songs, 3 songs. Then 1 song. So it’s not a real triology –
it’s our bad math version of a trilogy.”


In a report filed today by, drummer Bun E. Carlos observed,
“We wanted to make a record that sounded like 2009, get something that
sounds like us this year.” Nielsen weighed in as well, saying, “I think it
seems like we kinda grew up but didn’t too old, ’cause musically there’s a lot
of different aspects to it. When you hear something like (‘Sick Man of
Europe’), you think, ‘This can’t be the same guys.’ It sounds too energized for
what people expect from somebody who’s been around as long as we have…But
musically I think it sounds like we grew up a bit.”


 Meanwhile, news about the Hollywood Bowl recording was initially posted at then subsequently removed for reasons not clear – possibly
because the group hadn’t prepared an official announcement yet. Here’s the
original Billboard text as it appeared prior to being deleted:


The group is also
planning to release some sort of document from its 2007 Hollywood
Bowl performance of the Beatles’ “Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club
Band” but is not ready to announce it yet. That performance, a
40th-birthday tribute to the classic album, featured such guest vocalists as
Aimee Mann on “Fixing a Hole” and Joan Osborne on “Lucy in the
Sky With Diamonds.”




New Dirty Projectors LP Streams at NPR


Here’s hoping there’s
nothing about Black Flag or Don Henley on the rec, however…


By Blurt Staff


Fire up those browsers at exactly 11:59 p.m. on Monday
night, June 1: that’s when NPR
Music is streaming the entire
new album from the Dirty Projectors
ahead of its release date. The
album, Bitte Orca, is being made available for free, on-demand
listening a full week before it arrives in stores as part of the site’s “Exclusive First Listen” series.


Longstreth formed Dirty Projectors in 2002, and the group now also counts Angel
Deradoorian, Amber Coffman and Brian McComber as principal members. Bitte
is their fifth studio album; NPR Music calls the record
“awe-inspiringly executed and marked by sparkling imagination.”



track listings and album information are available at NPR
Music, where there are also extensive archives of concerts,
interviews and reviews of Dirty Projectors, including the band’s set during NPR
Music’s SXSW showcase
. Dirty Projectors also performed with David
Byrne during the recent Dark
Was the Night Concert
in New
York City; that entire concert is streaming now at NPR Music.




Ozzy Osbourne Bitch-slaps Tony Iommi


Please do the right



By Blurt Staff


With Ozzy Osbourne having filed a suit with the
Patent/Trademark office against his erstwhile partner Tony Iommi, things are
getting catty, as the statement just issued by Ozzy suggests. Apparently Ozzy
is seeking a 50% stake in the Black Sabbath name (which is trademarked,
naturally) and therefore a portion of the profits Iommi has gotten whenever he
used the Sabbath name minus Ozzy’s involvement.


There’s all kinds of fun other details HERE, but to heck
with the legal crap, let’s get on to the Ozzmeister’s (obviously ghostwritten)
words, reproduced in full, below. Hey, Ozzfest has sucked for years! Can you
spell “preemptive damage control for the inevitable fan backlash”? Have a good
weekend everybody!




Statement from OZZY OSBOURNE:


“It is
with great regret that I had to resort to legal action against my long term
partner, Tony Iommi, but after three years of trying to resolve this issue
amicably, I feel I have no other recourse. 
As of the mid-1990’s, after constant and numerous changes in band
members, the brand of “Black Sabbath” was literally in the toilet and
Tony Iommi (touring under the name Black Sabbath) was reduced to performing in
clubs.  Since 1997 when Geezer, Bill and
myself rejoined the band, Black Sabbath has returned to its former glory as we
headlined sold-out arenas and amphitheatres playing to upwards of 50,000 people
at each show around the world.  We worked
collectively to restore credibility and bring dignity back to the name “Black
Sabbath” which lead to the band being inducted into the UK and US Rock
& Roll Hall of Fames in 2005 and 2006, respectively.  Throughout the last 12 years, it was my
management representatives who oversaw the marketing and quality control of the
“Black Sabbath” brand through OZZFEST, touring, merchandising and album
reissues. The name “Black Sabbath” now has a worldwide prestige and
merchandising value that it would not have had by continuing on the road
it was on prior to the 1997 reunion tour. 
Tony, I am so sorry it’s had to get to this point by me having to take
this action against you.  I don’t have
the right to speak for Geezer and Bill, but I feel that morally and ethically
the trademark should be owned by the four of us equally.  I hope that by me taking this first step that
it will ultimately end up that way. 
We’ve all worked too hard and long in our careers to allow you to sell
merchandise that features all our faces, old Black Sabbath album covers and
band logos, and then you tell us that you own the copyright.  We’re all in our 60’s now. The Black Sabbath
legacy should live on long after we have all gone.  Please do the right thing.”






Wynn to Cover 2nd Dream Syndicate LP



Goin’ down to the medicine show one
mo’  time…


By Fred



Back in
2001, Dream Syndicate founder Steve Wynn pressed his band The Miracle 3 into service
to perform D.S. album The Days of Wine
and Roses
in its entirety as a combined tribute to his old band’s
groundbreaking classic and to mark the release of Rhino’s remastered/expanded
reissue. By all accounts, from both band and fans, the series of shows where Wine was covered was a rousing success.


 Now word comes that Wynn and the M3 – Jason
Victor, Dave Decastro and Linda Pitmon – will be doing a pair of shows, one in
NYC and one in L.A., in which they cover the Syndicate’s second album, 1984’s The Medicine Show, to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the LP.


As Wynn
& Co. quipped in a press release announcing the events, “Ronald Reagan
makes a run at a second term as president, the Berlin Wall is still intact, Boy
George tops the charts and has yet to spend a day in jail or collecting trash
in lower Manhattan, MTV seems to be a fad that might just stick around, cell
phones and the internet aren’t much more than space-age rumors alongside
jet-packs and time travel.  Most of the more dire predictions in George
Orwell’s book haven’t come true.  Yet. And the Dream Syndicate releases The Medicine Show.”


always loved this record and felt it has lived in the shadows of The Days of Wine and Roses,” said Wynn.
“So it will be nice to have a couple of nights to let it stand up on its own
and see how it stands up to a quarter of a century.”


Medicine Show performed admirably on
the charts, it confused a lot of the critics who expected the band to replicate
the nu-psychedelia of its predecessor. Apparently it fared better overseas,
however; BLURT is advised that it even made the London Guardian‘s
“Top 40 Albums of the First 40 Years of Rock” list in the mid-90s. And not
without cause, either, as it’s long been a fan favorite, particularly around
BLURT manor.


It’s different
from the first album, that’s for sure, but harder-edged, tauter in some places
and more sprawling in others, and with a tunesmith’s ear for classic hooks.
From the subtly incendiary anthemism of “Burn” and the jangly vivaciousness of “Tell
Me When It’s Over” to the chooglin’ raveup that’s “John Coltrane Stereo Blues”
and the thumping, thudding thug-rock of “The Medicine Show,” Medicine Show remains one of the era’s
stone classics.


“‘Medicine Show is the weirdest, most
idiosyncratic, nastiest, funniest and most revealing record the Dream Syndicate
ever made,” said Wynn in the liner notes from the record’s 1991 reissue. 
“It’s also my favorite.”


If anyone
reading this is keeping count here, this makes two classic releases for one band. How many groups can lay a claim
to one, much less two? Of course, anyone reading this who also knows Wynn’s
career also realizes that the hits just keep coming from this ever-prolific



Be there or be square:



            BROOKLYN, NY





Assembly Of Dust Offers ½ of LP Free


Start nabbing those tracks starting next week, kids.


By Blurt Staff


Assembly Of Dust has come up
with a cool fan program that lives up to the album title ‘Some Assembly Required.’ In advance of the release of the new album,
out July 21 on Missing Piece/Rock Ridge Music, the band will give their fans a
chance to have their very own a part of the album, giving away 7 of the albums
13 tracks as free downloads at the bands website:



Beginning June 2, a new
track will be available for free download every Tuesday leading up to
release.  Each download will be available
for a limited time.



The schedule:



June 2: “High
Brow” – Featuring Al Schnier (moe)

June 9:  “Leadbelly” – Featuring Jerry

June 16: “Arc of the
Sun” – Featuring Mike Gordon (Phish)

June 23: “All That I am
Now” – Featuring Richie Havens

June 30: “Borrowed
Feet” – Featuring John Scofield

July 7: “Straight”
– Featuring Theresa Andersson

July 14: “Pedal
Down” – Featuring The Gabbard Brothers (Buffalo Killers)



Some Assembly Required is an intriguing record boasting a hip-hop album’s
worth of guests. Every musician recruited (including Bela Fleck, David Grisman,
Grace Potter, John Scofield, Mike Gordon, Richie Havens, and Martin Sexton)
lends their considerable talents in service of band leader Reid Genauer’s compositions,
an inspired, inventive and spirited version of American rock and roots music.





WTF?!? Juan MacLean NookaNooka Toy?


Somebody’s been
playing with their kid’s Lego set lately….



By Blurt Staff



The DFA label, which recently
released The Juan MacLean’s fine new platter The Future Will Come (reviewed at BLURT here), has now teamed up
with design company Nooka to create The
Juan Maclean x NookaNooka


What, pray tell, be that?



“Born from the sci-fi influences
and music of DFA Records’ The Juan Maclean, and Nooka’s decidedly different
approach to design,” we are advised, “this little friend is the not-too-distant
relative of Nooka’s official mascot, the NookaNooka. Designed by DFA’s art
director Mike Vadino, and sculpted by LCD Soundsystem’s Pat Mahoney, this
little guy is a DFA collaborative masterpiece!”


View the video of the making of
the toy, below.


The Juan Maclean x NookaNooka making “personal appearances” at these shows:


    5/21    Boston,
MA @ Middle East
    5/25    Atlanta,
GA @ The Earl
    6/9     Vancouver,
BC @ Richards on Richards
    6/12    Denver, CO @ Beta
    6/20    New York, NY
@ Webster Hall


 Full list
of tour dates w/The Field:


05/21: Cambridge, MA @ Middle East

05/22: Philadelphia,
PA @ Pure

05/23: Washington,
DC @ Black Cat

05/25: Atlanta,
GA @ The Earl

05/27: Miami,
FL @ Liv @ Fountainbleu

05/29: Austin,
TX @ The Mohawk

05/30: Houston,
TX @ Numbers

05/31: Lobbock,
TX @ Cactus Courtyard

06/03: San Diego,
CA @ Casbah

06/04: Pomona,
CA @ The Glass House

06/05: Los Angeles, CA @ Avalon Hollywood

06/06: San
Francisco, CA @

06/07: Portland,
OR @ Doug Fir Lounge

06/08: Seattle,
WA @ Nectar Lounge

06/09: Vancouver,
BC @ Richards on Richards

06/11: Salt Lake
City, UT @ Urban

06/12: Denver,
CO @ Beta

06/13: Aspen,
CO @ Belly Up

06/16: Chicago,
IL @ Double Door

06/17: Cleveland,
OH @ Grog Shop

06/18: Toronto,
ON @ Tattoo

06/19: Montreal,
QC @ Les Saints




Black Mtn. Offshoot Lightning Dust Returns



New album incoming
from Jagjaguwar…


By Blurt Staff



Vancouver duo Lightning
Dust’s sophomore album for Jagjaguwar, Infinite Light (due August 4) is an album
that ups the ante of the band’s minimalist, self-titled debut and lays to waste
any “side project” chatter. As Lightning Dust, Amber Webber and
Joshua Wells harness a gentler sound than as founding members of Black Mountain,
though this sound is no less loaded with tension and an enviable fluency in the
most classic of psych-rock.



For the album, Webber and Wells called upon the powers of classic pop
arrangements and made the most of five days with a Steinway Grand piano. While
Webber and Wells met through their involvement in what they described as two of
the saddest bands in Canada,
the songs written for Infinite Light found the two moving away from the uniformly downbeat. Rather, the songs were
more suited to lush and melodramatic arrangements. Cue the strings. Lightning
Dust have delivered a cosmic record about the adventure in finding love and the
journey in losing and rediscovering “the light.”



While Infinite Light is definitely more
layered and lush than previous efforts, Lightning Dust’s minimal aesthetic
works well in the economy of musical theater, an influence for the record,
wherein each song’s movements aim to be more inspiring than the one before it.
And this is suiting in that Infinite
is a nod to “the light of inspiration” that
inspires us to keep dancing, creating and loving in spite of an encroaching
darkness. It’s a reminder that what makes the mountains so very, very black is
a distant light
somewhere on the other side.



First mp3 “I Knew”
is a shining example, an unlikely cross between Suicide  and Fleetwood Mac. Catch a preview here:








Antonia Jane

I Knew


The Times

Never Seen


Honest Man

Waiting On
The Sun To Rise

What Everyone Knows

Taking It