Monthly Archives: October 2011

Report: Duran Duran Live in NYC


At Madison Square
Garden on Oct. 25, the
iconic New Wave group was on a creative roll.


Text/photos by David Chiu

Duran Duran’s recent performance at New
York’s Madison
Square Garden
was a testament to the group’s ongoing popularity and longevity since the
self-titled debut album from 1981. Whereas some of their contemporaries from
the early ‘80s have come and gone, Duran Duran have matured from their
photogenic boy band years to being an influence in terms music, art and
fashion. One can trace the band’s impact on several of today’s electronic pop
and alternative rock acts such as Scissor Sisters.


The tour stop in New
York this past Tuesday seemed appropriate as the
group – singer Simone Le Bon, keyboardist Nick Rhodes, bassist John Taylor and
drummer Roger Taylor — is currently on a creative roll. Duran Duran’s recent
album, All You Need is Now, is
probably their strongest album in years as its sound recalls the group’s first
three albums – Duran Duran, Rio and Seven and the Ragged Tiger – for its arty electronic music, while
it still retains Duran Duran’s pop and dance sensibilities.


And because the music from All You Need is Now is a throwback to Duran Duran’s early past, the
new songs (“All You Need is Now,” “Leave a Light On,” and “Blame and the
Machines”) fit perfectly with the familiar hits during their Garden show, with
stylish imagery and graphics projected on screens behind the band. Thus, one
didn’t feel impatient or exasperated when Duran Duran launched into a song from
All You Need is Now – whereas perhaps
for other acts breaking in a new song, it would have been tempting to say, “Get
to the hit!”



Of course, the cheers from the audience, which was a cross
section of both young and old fans, grew a bit louder when they recognized
their favorites: the rollicking “Is There Something I Should Know”; the
pulsating “Hungry Like the Wolf”; the moving ballad “Ordinary World”: and the
funky “Notorious.” Other hits included from Duran Duran’s glory period were
“The Reflex,” “A View to a Kill,” and “The Wild Boys.”


The band also delved deep in their catalog with the
aggressive rocker “Careless Memories,” from the Duran Duran album, and the jazzy instrumental “Tiger Tiger,” from Seven and the Ragged Tiger. The show
closed with a performance of “Rio” with the
famous Patrick Nagel album cover art shown in the background.



The New York
show was also special because of two guest appearances. Ana Matronic from
Scissor Sisters reprised her rap singing from the recent album for the very
disco-influenced “Safe (In the Heat of the Moment).” Then later, Mark Ronson, the
producer who’s helmed All You Need is Now, performed with the band on “Girl Panic!”, another fine track from the
recent album.


As for the band members, they’ve lost none of their touch as
far as their musicianship is concerned:  Nick Rhodes’ keyboard work is so integral to
the Duran Duran sound as is John Taylor’s groove-inspired bass work; Roger
Taylor’s solid drumming – especially when one thinks about his hiatus from the
mid ‘80s to the early ‘00s – is what this band needed; and Simon Le Bon’s
vocals sounds ageless.


If their Madison Square Garden performance and the recent
album are any indications, Duran Duran still maintain the stylish exuberance
and electricity that fans have come to expect from them for these many years.


Set List:


Before the Rain

Planet Earth

A View to a Kill

All You Need is Now

Blame the Machines

Come Undone

Safe (In the Heat of the Moment) (with Ana Matronic)

The Reflex

The Man Who Stole a Leopard

Girl Panic! (with Mark

Is There Something I Should Know

Tiger Tiger

Careless Memories

Leave a Light On

Ordinary World


Hungry Like the Wolf

(Reach Up For The) Sunrise


The Wild Boys





Listen to Lana Del Rey Remixes


Yet more versions of “Blue
Jeans” and “Video Games”…


By Blurt Staff


The Lana Del Rey machine keeps a-rollin’ this week. While
fans and critics alike have posted mixed reviews of the Brooklyn songstress’
prowess as a live performer – her actual singing earns kudos, but her stage
presence/charisma apparently is fairly stiff/nonexistent – her “Video Games”
single did top Billboard‘s singles
chart, and she won a “Next Big Thing” trophy at the annual Q Awards in Britain.


And two more remixes have come down the pipeline, “Blue
Jeans” by Odd Future’s Syd the Kid (under his monicker The Internet), and “Video
Games” by Jakwob & Etherwood. Check ‘em out, below – and go here if you
want to listen to the original versions.


BLUE JEANS Odd Future’s The Internet Remix by P5757575757575

VIDEO GAMES Jakwob & Etherwood Remix by P5757575757575

MP3: Live Gov’t Mule from 2002


Track hails from
forthcoming Christmas Jam collection The Benefity Volume 4.


By Fred Mills


With news of the 23rd annual Warren Haynes
Christmas Jam
still fresh – this year’s installment, Dec. 10, features Gov’t
Mule, Phil Lesh & Friends, Los Lobos and a ton of other killer bands – Haynes’
label Evil Teen has just announced the impending release of Warren Haynes Presents: The Benefit Volume



 The 2-disc live
benefit release drops Dec. 6 and features Gov’t Mule, Bob Weir & Friends,
John Hiatt & The Goners, Robert Randolph & The Family Band, moe. and
more, recorded at the 14th annual Warren Haynes Christmas Jam in Asheville, NC
on December 21, 2002. Yours truly was there and can personally testify to the
potency of the evening – there were moments when the entire joint was
levitating, like during Randolph & Haynes’ duel during Slim Harpo’s “Shake
Your Hips,” when moe. Was joined onstage by Bob Weir and during the Mule’s
extended version of signature track “Sco-Mule.”


Proceeds from the album will Benefit the Asheville Chapter
of Habitat for Humanity. Now let’s listen to some Mule:




Worried Down With the Blues – Gov’t Mule (The Benefit Concert Vol 4) by Warrenhaynes





1. Carolina In My Mind –
Warren Haynes w/Don Lewis
2. 111 – Sons of Ralph
3. Nine Pound Hammer – Sons of Ralph w/Warren Haynes
4. The Kind Of Place – Jerry Joseph
5. Climb To Safety – Jerry Joseph w/Robert Randolph,
Dave Schools & Matt Abts
6. Looking Out My Window – Robert Randolph & The Family Band
7. Shake Your Hips – Robert Randolph & The Family Band w/Warren Haynes
& Danny Louis
8. Dark Star Jam > Mexico
– moe.

9. Opium – moe. w/Warren Hayne

Disc 2:
1. Ride Along – John Hiatt & The Goners
2. Tiki Bar Is Open – John Hiatt & The Goners w/Jon Smith
3. Memphis In
The Meantime – John Hiatt & The Goners w/Warren Haynes
4. Shakedown Street – Bob Weir & Friends
5. Truckin’ – Bob Weir & Friends
6. The Other One – Bob Weir & Friends
7. Worried Down With The Blues – Gov’t Mule w/Greg Rzab
8. Sco-Mule – Gov’t Mule w/Greg Rzab, Dr. Dan Mattrazo, Jon Smith, Mike Barnes
& DJ Logic
9. Simple Man – Gov’t
Mule w/Dave
Schools, Artimus Pyle,
Audley Freed, Mike Barnes & Rob Barraco


MP3: Meet Thee Cormans & Happy Halloween!


They’re a modern
stoneage family! Sorry, kids, ya gotta be over 17 to check ‘em out…


By Blurt Staff


In the grand tradition of Frankie Stein & his Ghouls and The
Deadly Ones, In The Red is releasing Thee Cormans’ Halloween Record w/ Special Effects – a bonafide Halloween
rock n’ roll album. The first 200 copies are pressed on glow in the dark vinyl
(download card included).



Southern Californian biker/surf instrumental combo Thee Cormans
have been bashing out their brand of Davie Allan & The Arrows meets the
Ventures on meth thrash for several years now. Theirs is a sound informed by
scratched up 60’s instrumental records, KBD punk records and exploitation B
movies chock full of monsters, bikers and mayhem. What this group of weirdos
does to the surf instrumental genre is very similar to what The Mummies did to
Pacific Northwest 60’s rock back in the 90’s: they speed it up, drag it through
the mud, pour a can of politically incorrect attitude over the top of it and
call it a pie. In this case the pie is filled with rubber bats, plastic fangs
and novelty shrunken heads.



Thee Cormans – “Open The Gates” by forcefieldpr



The label describes Halloween Record w/ Special Effects as “spine-chilling sounds guaranteed
to make you shiver! Flesh-ripping guitar playing! Skull pulverizing drum beats!
Gore-spattering bass lines! Spooky, hair-raising sound effects! The bloody
horror of this record is positively sinister!”



Well, all right then!



In The Red adds, in an ominous note that may or may not be for
real, “no one under 17 will be allowed to purchase this record without written
permission from a parent or guardian.” So just write your Uncle Blurt and we’ll
be glad to forge that note for ya.


John Lennon Comic Book?!?


Is this what we’ve been waiting for
over the past 30 years…?



By Blurt

Bluewater Productions has announced plans to tell John Lennon’s story as part
of Bluewater Comics “Orbit” series. Orbit: John Lennon will hit comic book
stores in Dec. 2011 in time for the anniversary of his passing.

“No one could begin to estimate the contribution the Beatles have had on our
world,” said Darren G. Davis, president of Bluewater Comics. “And John Lennon
is the perfect choice for our ‘Orbit’ series. He was so much more than just a
rock star, because he used his stardom to make the world a better place.”

Comic book writer Marc Shapiro (Selena
Gomez: The Graphic Novel, Female Force: Cher
said he painstakingly worked to capture the essence of Lennon’s story. “I
approached writing Fame: John Lennon as an exploration of a life full of
potential and promise that was, sadly, cut short,” said Shapiro. “We all know
the importance of John Lennon as part of The Beatles. But I felt it was more
important to concentrate on his post Beatles’ life and career, both good and
bad, so that readers would get the clearest possible idea about who he was as a
creative entity, husband and father.”

However, Shapiro takes the next step and explores “what might have been” in the
32-page comic book.


No word on
exactly what that means yet, however, so be very, very afraid…

Subjects of Bluewater’s “Orbit” have included Keith Richards, Stephen King, and
Howard Stern.  Also launched this week are Kindle versions of the
biography comic books of Steve Jobs, Selena Gomez, Anne Rice and more.


Mercury Rev, Morphine Get LITA Treatment


Light In The Attic
launches new imprint for ‘90s reissues, Modern Classics Recordings.


By Fred Mills


Unless your bag is something like, I dunno, Journey or
Rihanna, you know the name Light In The Attic: just like the man on the TV
says, you can trust your car to the man who wears the star, or in this case,
you can trust your musical edification to the label with the dangling
lightbulb. Pretty much anything that comes down the pipeline from the esteemed
musicologists and archivists at LITA clicks with us at BLURT. (Case in point: the recent anthology of South
Korean rocker Shin Joong Hyun
, or those awesome reissues from Rodriguez.)


So now comes word that the label is branching out with a new
imprint, Modern Classics Recordings, with a focus more on the semi-recent past,
e.g., the Nineties. (Raise your hand if you read that sickening piece in USA Today this week about ‘90s
nostalgia.) First up: Mercury Rev’s 1998 album Deserter’s Songs, to be followed by the 1993 classic by Morphine, Cure For Pain. Each will be pressed up
on 180-gram vinyl – the first time either has been reissued on LP – boasting
remastered sound  and deluxe gatefold
packaging featuring new liner notes and interviews with the protagonists. A
download card will be included as well, and in the case of the Mercury Rev
platter, 100 random copies will contain an autographed photo of Grasshopper and
Jonathan Donohue.


Here’s what LITA co-owner Matt Sullivan had to say about the
new label: The selections are “from our personal stash, as they came out. An
era of those shiny, futuristic things called CDs and whatever bands were
actually putting out vinyl in the ’90s. I was born in ’76 and we’ve never reissued
much past that. These were the days of Reagan and the contras, sipping
Everclear from cola war bottles between the Bushes, bouncing off our parent’s
walls to classics like Straight Outta Compton and Nevermind!”


He adds, “The goal with these elegant reissues via Modern
Classics is to provide the same attention to detail that Light In The Attic has
become known for, while having the artist involved in their re-release through
extrapolative liner notes, helping to curate their unique historical importance
and creative exceptionality, albums which snared the overflowing creativity of
the zeitgeist in which they were released, and influenced the best semi-pop
music for years to come.”


Full details at the LITA website.


Dance to the New Black Keys Single


Let’s Twist again,
like we did last summer, y’all.


By Fred Mills


It’s a concept that ain’t a concept: a person dancing in a
rock video! We’re in the middle that new oral history of MTV, so this one, uh,
definitely clicks with us.





It’s the Black Keys, doing “Lonely Boy,” the first single
from the forthcoming Danger Mouse album El
, due Dec. 6 on Nonesuch.


“Lonely Boy” will also be a 12″ release for the upcoming
Black Friday sale at indie shops courtesy Record Store Day


Win Rolling Stones DVDs at BLURT


Contest ends Monday,
Oct. 31, so don’t delay.


By Blurt Staff


Rolling Stones fans, heads-up! We have a very special item
to give away. You can win a copy of the newly released DVD from the Rolling
Stones 4 Ed Sullivan Shows, a
two-disc set containing the Sullivan
performances from May 2, 1965; Feb. 13, 1966; Sept. 11, 1966; and Jan 15, 1967.
(These are the full broadcasts, by the way.)


Read more details of the release elsewhere on the BLURT


What an amazing item. All you have to do is this: whoever is
the biggest fan and “shares’ this link with the most friends or gets the
most “likes” to their post and gets the most friends to sign up to
“like” this at our Facebook page will win the DVD. (Once you are at
our Facebook page, scroll down until you spot the Stones DVD image pictured


We will compile all three to see who wins. Contest ends Oct 31st. Get your friends
to support you and why you should win this DVD…


First Look: New Atlas Sound Album


Deerhunter’s Bradford
Cox returns in his solo guise with
out Nov. 8 on 4AD.


By Jhoni



As the
original outlet for Deerhunter’s Bradford Cox, Atlas Sound has always leaned
toward the strange, fuzzy and abstract. But Cox sings a decidedly different
tune on Parallax, making the title –
which relates to a shift in perspective that makes background objects appear to
move slower than those at the forefront – incredibly suiting.



Atlas Sound – Terra Incognita by stopshakehoneygo


The album is elaborately layered, lush and
melodic, an obviously far stretch from the four volumes of Bedroom Databank recordings Cox released online. And though Cox
found a more accessible sound on 2009’s Logos, the LP has more in common with Halcyon
Deerhunter’s most recent offering. Though Cox maintains his
signature subtle desolation, he’s more self-assured than ever this time. Gentle
introspection – instead of the outright melancholy he often exudes-paired with
sway-worthy melodies make Parallax the
most listenable Atlas Sound album to date.


that’s not what Cox intended, but pushing the avant-garde wallowing into the
background this time around is a surprising, lovely relief.

Video Premiere: New Jason Isbell


Brand new clip, “Alabama Pines,”
one of the key tracks on Isbell’s latest record.


By Fred Mills


We’ll come right out and admit it: here at BLURT we consider
Jason Isbell one of our patron saints. He has yet to put out a bad record, and
it seems like every time he steps on stage, either solo or with his band The 400
Unit, magic happens. So we’re dead chuffed to bring you his new video, for the
song “Alabama Pines” off his latest album Here
We Rest
(Lightning Rod Records).


It’s a sleek, country-flavored, deceptively upbeat
toe-tapper of a tune that contrasts with its moodier, contemplative lyrical
thrust; the images convey a range of emotions that’ll be familiar to fellow
musicians and road warriors alike (and pay attention to the little girl).






More Isbell at BLURT:


Here We Rest review


Jason Isbell & the
400 Unit


“Leap Of Faith” interview (April 2011)


The Blurt Video Interview + Unplugged Performance



Isbell and The 400 Unit will be on tour from now until Nov. 13, plus selected additional dates in Nov. and Dec. Check the itinerary at his official website.