Monday, August 3, 2015

Footings - "High" [EIS Premiere]

Footings is a new project from Peterborough, NH's busiest singer/songwriter Eric Gagne. The founder and driving force behind Peterborough's Thing in the Spring Festival, Gagne has been prolific over the past few years, releasing solo records as Passerine (including albums on both Sophomore Lounge and Hidden Temple Tapes) as well as with his bands, Death to Tyrants and Dweller on the Threshold. Recently, Gagne has switched his focus to Footings, transforming Passerine's contemplative folk songs into lush arrangements, joined by Bunny's A Swine's Dustin Ashley Cote (drums) and Candace Clement (vocals) as well as Elisabeth Fuchsia (viola/violin). With a full length debut on the way, Footings have released the "High" Tour Tape, a collection of two original songs and a Merle Haggard cover just in time for their Summer tour dates with Pile's Rick Maguire... aka Rick from Pile.

"High," the first glimpse at Footings' new line-up, is a delicate folk song that firmly plants the listener in their world with vivid imagery of pushing cars up the street and the age ol' pastime of stealing sodas from Helmet shows. Much like Peterborough itself, there's an undeniable quaintness to the song, a beauty that resides in minimalism. Gagne's songwriting benefits from the fleshed out qualities that come with having a full band as he and Clement's voice harmonize beautifully over the strings and sparse drums, but "High" remains as personal as they come. Gagne's lyrics lowly paint a weary yet hopeful picture of friendship and togetherness. It's in that togetherness that Footings finds life and we're looking forward for all that is to come.

Check out "High" and all of the band's upcoming tour dates below. The "High" Tour Tape can be streamed HERE.

Rick from Pile / Footings Tour Dates:

8/06 - Peterborough, NH @ Toadstool Bookshop w/ Bunny's a Swine & Ryan Davis
8/07 - Hudson, NY @ Spotty Dog w/ Metal Mountains
8/08 - Burlington, VT @ The Sink w/ Wren Kitz & Francis
8/09 - Ogunquit, ME @ Cornerstone Pizza (2pm show!)
8/09 - Portland, ME @ Space Annex w/ Nat Baldwin & GREEF
8/10 - Dover, NH @ Needful Things w/ Rick Rude & Little My
8/11 - Boston, MA @ HI Boston Hostel w/ Digital Prisoners of War, Bashful Slasher & Warren
8/12 - New Haven, CT @ Thee House in New Haven w/ Procedure Club & Laundry Day
8/13 - Brooklyn, NY @ Tiger Lounge / Shouldertap w/ Yazan & Nixon Mask
8/14 - Philadelphia, PA @ The Great Indoors w/ Turbosleaze & Cave Cricket
8/15 - Becket, MA @ The Dreamaway Lodge

Sunday, August 2, 2015

Vundabar Stream "Gawk" In Full via Consequence of Sound

[consequenceofsound.net] Boston has been churning out a slew of exciting indie rock bands in recent years. While many of these acts hang on angular minor chords, Vundabar stands out from the DIY crowd thanks to a jangly lean on pop sounds. Case in point: their catchy-as-hell sophomore album, Gawk, due July 24th on their own Gawk Records. Ahead of the street release, the LP is streaming in full below.

After a year of hard, international touring behind their self-released Antics debut, Vundabar came home to some rough times. The trio had no choice but to lean on each other for support, channeling the frustrations of their life into an album tackling “alienation, identity, perception, detachment and a quiet bitterness,” all with a sardonic lyrical wit courtesy of frontman Brandon Hagen.

The band recorded in Medford, Massachusetts’ Mystic Valley Analog Recording Studio, providing the album a level of polish the GarageBand-made Antics only dreamed of. Yet the sound is still distinctly Vundabar, assuredly dipping into dark territories with a sense of lightness wrapped in complicated, playful musicality. “We’re not really as heavy as some of the bands from the area, but we still love a lot of the bands,” Hagen told Confront Magazine. “I feel like it’s impossible for environment not to bleed into what someone is making, so maybe our style is a bit reactionary to the predominating style in the area.”

Speaking of this particular record’s influences, he added, “Over the last year I’d gotten really into writers like Joseph Heller, Albert Camus and Vonnegut. They use humor to show the absurdity of serious topics, and that’s something I’ve always responded to. Satire is able to be sardonic and earnest at the same time and I like approaching writing that way, walking the line of that contradiction.”

Take a listen to Gawk below, and order it here.

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Krill Share "Torturer" Video via NPR Music

[nprmusic.org] The music of Krill is all about tension just waiting to be released. Seething anxiety runs through the lyrics of bassist and singer Jonah Furman, who deploys drawn-out, sentence-like phrases that tease out pent-up emotions, self-doubt and neurosis. It makes Krill's songs feel jittery and claustrophobic one moment and satsifyingly cathartic the next, as the trio erupts into distortion. It's a formula that's firmly placed Krill alongside its Boston peers Speedy Ortiz and Pile as one of the city's best live bands, and it's on full display throughout the band's 2015 album A Distant Fist Unclenching — and especially in its highlight, "Torturer."

Recorded with Justin Pizzoferrato (who's worked with Dinosaur Jr, Sonic Youth and Speedy Ortiz), "Torturer" is a brooding song punctuated by Aaron Ratoff's wiry and snarling guitar lines, Ian Becker's sudden barrages of drums, and feedback that flares up when you'd least expect it. That loud-then-quiet-then loud dynamic also plays a role in the band's new video for the song.

Directed by Kathleen Hancock and Doug Ross, the video depicts a young caretaker at one of those old New England mansions — complete with ornate oil paintings and intricate wallpaper that appears both lovely and perhaps a little unsettling. The day starts like every other: He wakes up, washes his face, meticulously prepares breakfast and works through various chores. But as isolation and monotony allow the mind to wander, paranoia kicks in — and odd, childlike people (or figments of his imagination?) in animal masks appear eerily around every turn. Soon, they begin to wreak havoc.

As the song builds through the band's waves of noisy outbursts, the caretaker gives in to his more primitive impulses — just as Furman's conversational chorus becomes a sort of dialogue between him and those tormenting creatures (or perhaps with himself): "I asked, 'What did you come here for?'" he sings. "And you said, 'Whatever you need me for' / I said, 'I don't know what you're for.'" It's all a little surreal, sure. But the story and its imagery matches the low, rumbling turmoil lurking in Krill's complex, chaotic music.

Monotony to Release Debut on Vinyl via Faux Discx in August

[press release] Faux Discx is FINALLY putting out the first 6 songs written by the band Monotony on vinyl. Previously only available as a download and fleetingly as a limited cassette on Comfortable On A Tightrope, these six rough, instant and infectious songs were created without any intentions but soon took on a life of their own. The 12” repeats on both sides for a fully monotonous experience with hand screen-printed artwork by The Positive Press and limited to 300.

Monotony, known for their simplistic dirge punk, formed in the summer of 2014 when they wrote 5 songs in an hour, recorded them on a Sunday with Mark Jasper at Sound Savers in Homerton, put them on the internet and thought nothing more of it. BBC 6 DJ Marc Riley heard them, started playing them and refuses to stop, ruining dinner time for many people across the UK.

Since then they have made various attempts at being a real band by playing the Middlesbrough Institute of Modern Art, DRILL festival on personal invitation from Wire, a 6 Music session for Marc Riley, a BBC Television performance (also for Marc Riley, on his All Shook Up program) and a UK tour. They’ve also played at Power Lunches.

Monotony is comprised of Lindsay Corstorphine (vocals), Christopher Murphy (guitar), Richard Phoenix (bass) and Jen Calleja (drums).

140g black vinyl in a screen-printed sleeve. 300 copies. Some are printed in black, some in teal. Repeats both sides. Comes with digital download code.

In shops 14 August 2015. Pre-order HERE.

Monday, July 20, 2015

CROSSS Set To Tour With Built to Spill

[press release] CROSSS, who are on tour now in the US, are pleased to announce extended 2015 tour dates which will wrap up with a month of shows opening for Built To Spill in September - see full list of dates below.

CROSSS is a Canadian trio who take inspiration from 70's proto-drone, lo-fi indie, noise and metal. Their dirge, punishing volume, and composition intensity is offset by haunting and memorable vocal melodies. Prodigious drumming and ambitious improvised guitar create moments of complex prolonged trance and meditative phrase.

The group began in Halifax, Canada in 2012 as a duo, but following several relocations and lineup shifts, is now based in Toronto, Canada and has grown into a trio.

CROSSS' debut 12" Obsidian Spectre was released on Telephone Explosion in 2013. Their follow-up LP titled LO was released on June 16th, 2015.

"Crosss conjure the sound of empires crumbling-theirs is a tremorous, ominous, eerily isolating squall tailor-made for dilapidated castles rotting from mildew and overrun with vermin. The Toronto-via-Halifax trio's sludgy psych-rock may be too alternately scabrous and cerebral to be classified as metal, unless you're talking about the actual physical material: This stuff is leaden and impenetrable, with visible signs of rusting and corrosion." - Pitchfork

TOUR DATES:

07/21 - Cincinnati - The Woodward Theatre ^
07/22 - Columbus - The Basement ^
07/23 - Buffalo - Mohawk Place ^
07/24 - Montreal - Bar Le Ritz !
07/25 - Quebec City - Sous Circle !
07/26 - Fredericton - Shifty Bits Circus !
07/28 - Halifax - Khyber
08/02 - Sackville - Sappy Fest
08/15 - St.John's NFLD - Shed Island
08/22 - Toronto - Double Double Land $
08/23 - Montreal - Brasserie Beaubien $
09/04 - Toronto - Smiling Buddha +
09/05 - Montreal - Death House +
09/11 - Lincoln, NE - Vega *
09/12 - Maquoketa, IA - Codfish Hollow *
09/13 - Chicago, IL - Subterranean *
09/14 - Bloomington, IN - Bluebird *
09/15 - Columbus, OH - The Basement *
09/16 - Cleveland, OH - Grog Shop *
09/17 - State College, PA - State Theatre *
09/19 - Montreal, QC - Club Soda *
09/21 - Buffalo, NY - Town Ballroom *
09/22 - Lancaster, PA - Chameleon Club *
09/23 - New York, NY - Bowery Ballroom *
09/24 - New York, NY - Bowery Ballroom *
09/25 - New York, NY - Bowery Ballroom *
09/26 - Brooklyn, NY - Brooklyn Bowl *
09/27 - New Haven, CT - College Street Music Hall *
09/28 - Portland, ME - Asylum *

* = with Built To Spill
^ = with Metz and Viet Cong
+ = with Babysitter and Hag Face
$ = with Ursula and The Channels
! = with New Fries

Mark Lanegan Set to Release Unreleased Demos Collection "Houston (Publishing Demos 2002)"

[press release] Mark Lanegan releases a 12-song collection of previously unreleased demos as Houston (Publishing Demos 2002) via Ipecac Recordings on Aug. 21.

At the time of these recordings, the Screaming Trees had fairly recently disbanded and the ever prolific Lanegan was in the early years of his solo offerings.

Houston (Publishing Demos 2002) track list:

1. No Cross
2. Two Horses
3. When It’s In You (Methamphetamine Blues)
4. High Life
5. I’ll Go Where You Send Me *
6. Grey Goes Black *
7. The Primitives
8. Blind
9. Halcyon Daze *
10. Nothing Much to Mention
11. A Suite for Dying Love *
12. Way To Tomorrow

* Previously released

Justice Records’ Randall Jamail produced the album and the album art was done by The Mekons’ Jon Langford.

Windhand Share New Single "Two Urns" From Upcoming Album "Grief's Infernal Flower"

[press release] Windhand floor us with "Two Urns" - the leading single from their third full-length album, Grief's Infernal Flower. Produced by Jack Endino (Nirvana, High On Fire, Soundgarden), the album stands to see Windhand cementing themselves as one of the premier metal bands of our time. Windhand convey an irrepressible sense of motion even within the slowest of songs. It's a massive sound, heavy, personal and a modern testament to the power of doom and stoner metal's legacies.

On Grief's Infernal Flower, front woman Dorthia Cottrell firmly establishes herself as one of today's most powerful vocalists - perfectly balancing beauty with enormous force. The twin-guitar attack of Garrett Morris and Asechiah Bogdan weaves together nine songs of perfect riffs and fuzzed-out bliss. That often-delicate splendor is all tempered by the colossal rhythmic mastery of bassist Parker Chandler and drummer Ryan Wolfe, whose lower-register expertise serves as the backbone of the new record.

Windhand Live Dates:

Jul 28: AS220 - Providence, RI
Jul 29: Cambridge, MA - Middle East Upstairs
Jul 30: Montreal, QC - RRROOAAARRR
Jul 31: Toronto, ON - The Garrison
Sep 18: Richmond, VA - Strange Matter
Oct 21: New York, NY - Gramercy #
Oct 22: Buffalo, NY - Waiting Room #
Oct 23: Pittsburgh, PA - Smiling Moose #
Oct 24: Chicago, IL - Empty Bottle #
Oct 27: Seattle, WA - Neumos #
Oct 28: Vancouver, BC - Astoria #
Oct 29: Portland, OR - Mississippi Studios #
Oct 30: San Francisco, CA - The Chapel #
Oct 31: San Diego, CA - Night of the Shred ^
Nov 01: Los Angeles, CA - Roxy #
Nov 02: Mesa, AZ - Club Red #
Nov 03: Albuquerque, NM - Sister #
Nov 04: Denver, CO - Bluebird Theater #
Nov 06: Dallas, TX - Dada #
Nov 07: Austin, TX - Fun Fun Fun Fest Nites #
Nov 08: Little Rock, AR - White Water Tavern #
Nov 11: Columbus, OH - Ace of Cups #
Nov 12: Ferndale, MI - Loving Touch #
Nov 13: Cleveland, OH - Grog Shop #
Nov 14: Baltimore, MD - Metro Gallery #
Nov 15: Philadelphia, PA - Underground Arts #

# - w/ Danava and Monolord
^ - w/ Monolord

Windhand - Grief's Infernal Flower Track List:

1 - Two Urns
2 - Forest Clouds
3 - Crypt Key
4 - Tanngrisnir
5 - Sparrow
6 - Hyperion
7 - Hesperus
8 - Kingfisher
9 - Aition

More on Windhand:

For a band who traffic in measured, unhurried riffage, Richmond's Windhand have moved awfully quickly over the last few years. Founded in 2009, the VA quintet have been making waves since the release of their 2010 practice space demo, a two-track CD that garnered the band comparisons to artists like Electric Wizard, The Devil's Blood, and Black Sabbath. That auspicious start was further realized in March 2012 when the band released their self-titled debut, which quickly became an underground hit and sold out of multiple vinyl presses in a matter of months.

A year later, the band officially signed to Relapse Records. After a steady touring schedule, the band collaborated with Richmond brethren Cough on a split entitled Reflection of the Negative, which was released on Relapse in April 2013. Pitchfork deemed the split Windhand's "best music to date," and the record's positive critical reception helped pave the way for Windhand to release the highly anticipated album Soma in September 2013. Stereogum, Spin, and LA Weekly featured Soma prominently on their overall best-of lists. The album was heavily represented in countless metal publications including Revolver, Invisible Oranges, MetalSucks, and Metal Injection. Rolling Stone, NPR, and Pitchfork all took note of Soma as well; the former considered the album the third-best metal release of 2013.

Soma was no flash-in-the-pan internet phenomenon. In 2013 and 2014, the band embarked on a series of support and headlining tours across North America, Europe, and Australia, sharing the stage with the likes of Sleep, High on Fire, Dead Meadow and Kvelertak. In addition, Windhand appeared at major festivals including Roadburn, SXSW, Scion Rock Fest, Day of the Shred and Maryland Deathfest.

Now Windhand return with their third full-length, Grief's Infernal Flower, a multifaceted slab of thundering stoner doom that Noisey has called "doom metal's most anticipated album of the year."

Protomartyr Announce New Album "The Agent Intellect" for October Release

[press release] This October marks the release of Protomartyr’s third and finest work to date, The Agent Intellect. Named after an ancient philosophical questioning of how the mind operates in relation to the self, it’s an elegant and often devastating display of all that makes Protomartyr—composed of singer Joe Casey, guitarist Greg Ahee, drummer Alex Leonard, and bassist Scott Davidson—so vital and singularly visceral an outfit. Over the course of several months, Ahee waded through more than a hundred song fragments until he reached the bottomless melodies of “I Forgive You” and “Clandestine Time”, the inky depths of “Pontiac ’87” and titanic churn of “Why Does It Shake?” Lyrically, Casey is at his most confident and haunting. He humanizes evil on “The Devil in His Youth,” and, amid the charred pop of “Dope Cloud,” he reassures us that nothing—not God, not money—can or will prevent our minds from unraveling until we finally fade away. We are no one and nothing, he claims, without our thoughts. It’s a theme that echoes through the entirety of the record, but never as beautifully as it does on “Ellen.” Named after his mother and written from the perspective of his late father, it’s as romantic a song as you’re likely to hear this or any year, Casey promising to wait for her on the other side, with the memories she’s lost safely in hand.

Protomartyr’s third record in three years (following 2013’s No Passion All Technique & 2014’s Under Color of Official Right), the Detroit four-piece is operating with a clear sense of urgency and focus. Today, they share the first single off The Agent Intellect, “Why Does It Shake?” Casey says of the song, “It's an back-handed ode to humanity's resilient self regard in the face of inevitable oblivion. Then the trap door opens." The Agent Intellect is out 10/9 on Hardly Art.

THE AGENT INTELLECT TRACKLISTING:

1. The Devil in His Youth
2. Cowards Starve
3. I Forgive You
4. Boyce or Boice
5. Pontiac 87
6. Uncle Mother’s
7. Dope Cloud
8. The Hermit
9. Clandestine Time
10. Why Does It Shake?
11. Ellen
12. Feast of Stephen

PROTOMARTYR TOUR DATES:

Fri. July 24 - Seattle, WA @ Capitol Hill Block Party
Fri. Oct. 9 - Detroit, MI @ Marble Bar
Sat. Oct. 10 - Detroit, MI @ Marble Bar
Sun. Oct. 11 - Toronto, ON @ Horseshoe Tavern
Mon. Oct. 12 - Montreal, QC @ Bar Le Ritz PDT
Tue. Oct. 13 - Cambridge, MA @ Middle East Upstairs
Sat. Oct. 17 - Baltimore, MD @ Metro Gallery
Sun. Oct. 18 - Philadelphia, PA @ Johnny Brenda’s
Tue. Oct. 20 - Raleigh, NC @ King’s Barcade
Wed. Oct. 21 - Atlanta, GA @ The Earl
Thu. Oct. 22 - Nashville, TN @ Stone Fox
Fri. Oct. 23 - Bloomington, IN @ Blockhouse
Sat. Oct. 24 - Milwaukee, WI @ Cactus Club
Wed. Oct. 28 - Nantes, FR @ Soy Festival - Stereolux
Thu. Oct. 29 - Lille, FR @ La Peniche
Fri. Oct. 30 - Brighton, UK @ Green Door Store
Sat. Oct. 31 - Leeds, UK @ Brudenell Social Club
Sun. Nov. 1 - London, UK @ Scala
Tue. Nov. 3 - Bristol, UK @ The Fleece
Wed. Nov. 4 - Manchester, UK @ Sound Control
Thu. Nov. 5 - Glasgow, UK @ Stereo
Fri. Nov. 6 - Birmingham @ The Rainbow Cellar
Sat. Nov. 7 - Cardiff, UK @ SWN Fest
Mon. Nov. 9 - Brussels, BE @ Botanique (Rotonde)
Tue. Nov. 10 - Wiesbaden, DE @ Schlachthof
Wed. Nov. 11 - Hamburg, DE @ Hafenklang
Thu. Nov. 12 - Copenhagen, DK @ Loppen
Fri. Nov. 13 - Aarhus, DK @ Radar
Sat. Nov. 14 - Berlin, DE @ Berghain Katine
Mon. Nov. 16 - Cologne, DE @ MTC
Tue. Nov. 17 - Strasbourg, FR @ Le Mudd Club
Wed. Nov. 18 - Paris, FR @ Point Ephemere
Thu. Nov. 19 - Rotterdam, NL @ Rotown
Fri. Nov. 20 - Utrecht, NL @ Le Guess Who? Festival
Sat. Nov. 21 - Kortrijk, BE @ Sonic City - De Kreun

Pre-Order The Agent Intellect HERE.

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Digital Prisoners of War - "Béla Bar Talk" Music Video [EIS Premiere]

by Eric Gagne


The sun is blowing everything out in a gorgeous kind of way in this new video from Supriya Gunda’s Digital Prisoners of War. I was wondering at first if the old man hand belonged to a relative, but eventually the creepy sweetness knocks down the scenery. What’s left though is poignant; like Henry Fonda with his foot on a fence, against the painted studio backdrops of Grapes of Wrath, realer and with more heart than any location shoot or cgi bullshit around today.



"Béla Bar Talk" comes from Digital Prisoners of War's latest EP, Casually Defying Physics, available now.

EIS Review: State Champion "Fantasy Error"

State Champion
Fantasy Error
Sophomore Lounge; 2015
Review by Eric Gagne

State Champion is my favorite kind of band. They’re the kind of band that makes me feel like what I’m doing has some kind of validation. A lot of us are out there, trying to focus (but not too much) on writing, recording, performing, and releasing music that might one day be held up to the light, along with our highest contemporaries. Sure some folks say, “there’s nothing new under the sun” etc, but as we know, perspective is legion; it is infinite in its depth and diversity. If each of us has a particular, and unique, way of explaining, understanding, and processing our individual journeys, then there is a humbling expanse of songs to be sung. It’s easy to start thinking that what you might be doing is destined for obscurity, and some of us take solace in that; it can be very freeing to just shoot something into space. It’s amazing to know other people, though, that care so much about this entire process, and fully understand the privilege it is to get to play one’s songs in front of folks, especially while traveling from town to town.

This album is stacks of days on the road, towering far into the stratosphere. It’s made by a band that arrives in a town and wants to taste local beer and honey, see the area record shop, dip in the best body of water. Their exuberance is always refreshing, and the tunes carry on a wonderful tradition of left-of-center country music. They seem most at home at a bar, belting out the twang in hazy, boozy air. There’s a real American desperation in the stories they tell, and the hard edge with which they deliver the songs alludes to it in shrieks and distortion. The rhythm section jumps like Pavement, and the violin reminds me of Scarlet Rivera and the Silver Jews for some reason, both sweeping and understated. The other instruments steady the strums and cry break of Ryan Davis, like the barrel of a gun would a bullet, shooting through rotten barnboards, soggy swamp-trees, rusted chassis, and the sweaty, wilted, daydream of careful American decadence. Cigarettes drying on the hood of the van, wet towels pinched in closed windows, drinking cans of beer barefoot on the pavement, sun warming your skin, and peeling the lake off of you one drop at a time; this is the actual sound of Fantasy Error described via some weird synesthesia. State Champion has probably already played in your town, but if any of what I’ve said sounds even the least bit familiar, you need to get them on your radar, so you don’t miss them again, wailing our language, and pouring over our constellations.

Monday, July 6, 2015

Gaytheist and RABBITS Release Collaborative LP "GAY*BITS"

[press release] GAY*BITS is a split LP from two of Portland's most exciting underground rock 'n' roll bands: GAYTHEIST and RABBITS. Like two sides of the same strange coin, GAY*BITS showcases the wherewithal the two power trios summon to run in different directions with the same basic tools and material. Attacking the split LP format as a collaborative challenge rather than simply a vehicle for two distinct EPs, GAY*BITS funnels, fuses, and distills the best of both their wacked-out worlds into twelve nuggets of hook-laden noise rock. Sharing songs, singers, and so-called humor, GAYTHEIST and RABBITS get up inside each others' warped heads and in each others' faces like never before, bringing out the best of both for a rollicking ridealong through a razorbladed candyland of catchy riffs, bruising beats, and surprises galore.

Formed by three friends that did time in a variety of Portland-area bands, GAYTHEIST hit the ground running in 2011 and cranked out an album every year since — whether you liked it or not. The “bulldozing punk-metal trio” (Willamette Week) released their last two LPs, Stealth Beats and Hold Me... But Not So Tight, on Seattle's Good To Die Records, combining propulsive rhythms, killer riffage, and melodic vocal stylings into tightly knit songs presented at a furious pace with hefty doses of acerbic wit to boot, “creating a kind of sludgy rock metal amalgam that seems to be only bred in the Pacific Northwest” (Decibel). Likewise, three long-time friends from the DIY hardcore scene formed RABBITS in 2003 with a back-to-basics, no-nonsense (okay, plenty of nonsense) approach to noise rock, coming off as brutal avant blues. After years of self-released singles, tapes, and CD-Rs, they began cranking out LPs as well, starting with Lower Forms, their 2011 “groundbreaking endeavor” (All Music Guide) on Relapse Records, and followed in 2012 by Bites Rites (Good To Die) to answer the age-old question, “Ever wonder what would happen if you put your Butthole Surfers records through a buzz saw?” (Vancouver Weekly).

Not ones to rest on their laurels (whatever those are), GAYTHEIST and RABBITS joined forces to create the not-just-any-old split LP GAY*BITS. As one might expect, GAYTHEIST is all over the A-side and RABBITS all over the B, but it's so much more and less than that. Crafted by geniuses over many years at the bottom of many very deep bowls to reflect the symmetry of something-or-other we forgot about, the twelve songs are split six to a side, each band's side comprising two new tracks, an old song revised with the other band's singer singing, two covers of the other band's old tracks, and another new song performed by each band separately but written together. Got that? Get in with GAYTHEIST, get out with RABBITS. Yeah, we know: some pretty heavy shit right there. But don't worry if it doesn't make sense now... or later. Just sit back and enjoy your GAY*BITS like the rest of us.

More about Gaytheist and Rabbits:

GAYTHEIST and RABBITS are two three-piece rock bands from Portland, Oregon. GAYTHEIST comprises Tim Hoff (bass/vox), Nick Parks (drums/vox), and Jason Rivera (gtr/vox/lyrics). Operating at furious pace since their start circa 2011, GAYTHEIST has released four LPs, two via Good To Die Records, most recently Hold Me... But Not So Tight, “a clever take on the growing alienation of the Digital Age built around blistering noise rock” (Sputnik Music). RABBITS comprises Sethro (gtr/vox), KG (drums/vox), and Booze (gtr/vox/lyrics). Older and slower, RABBITS has been at it for over 10 years, releasing three LPs and variety of EPs and splits including Bites Rites on Good To Die in 2012, “nine brazen, scathing attacks to the consciousness on a hot, rusted rail” (Heavy Planet). The idea for GAY*BITS hatched and grew over the last three years on shared bills throughout the Pacific Northwest, where the two bands are well-known for their energetic, pummeling, occasionally off-the-rails, and always enjoyable performances. Both bands caught the attention of Whitey McConnaughy, who shot videos for “Stomach Pains” (GAYTHEIST) and “So Fake It's Real” (RABBITS). Both GAYTHEIST and RABBITS have been compared to The Jesus Lizard, though neither sounds very much like them, and—unsurprisingly given their Pacific Northwest home—they all love KARP, Poison Idea, and The Wipers.

Friday, June 26, 2015

Weed Share "Never Leave" Video + Tour Dates

[press release] On the heels of the release of their sophomore LP Running Back, Vancouver's Weed are back today to share the video for album single "Never Leave," directed by Andrea Lukic—bassist-vocalist for Vancouver punk band Nü Sensae.

Additionally, the band has announced the finalized locations of their upcoming tour, which sees the band on the road throughout July. Check out the video at Noisey (or below) and see below for all of Weed's upcoming tour dates.

Tour Dates:

7/2 – Milwaukee, WI - Lucky Dog
7/3 – Detroit, MI - Lo & Behold
7/4 - Kingston, ON - Artel
7/5 - Toronto, ON - SHIBGB'S
7/7 - Oklahoma City, OK - The Shop
7/8 - Kansas City, MO - Green Desert
7/9 - Omaha, NE - Sweatshop Gallery
7/10 - Sioux Falls, SD - Total Drag
7/11 - Fargo, ND - Skate park show TBA
7/12 - Minneapolis, MN - Luck Machine

ABOUT WEED:

"With a noisy, gazey sound that's gloriously murky and overdriven, Vancouver's Weed have everything it takes to be a part of the proud lineage of bands they are so obviously influenced by. A quick listen to a few songs from their second LP, Running Back, and names like Sonic Youth, My Bloody Valentine, and Dinosaur Jr. will spring to mind readily. Like those groups, Weed harness the power of abrasive guitars played very, very loud; they have pedals that make things go whoosh; they have a drummer who hits the cymbals like he's trying to shatter them into shards; and above all, they have the kind of dynamic energy that makes the music come alive.

There's no doubt that Weed are doing some serious excavation of the past, but they aren't just re-creating it in some lifeless, predictable fashion. They write songs that are memorable and hooky, sing and play them like every note really matters, and masterfully bowl over any reservations one might have about yet another band playing this same style. Similar to what Nothing did on their excellent album Guilty of Everything, Weed don't sound like hoary revivalists at all; instead, they sound like they are here to teach other revivalist bands how to do things the right way. Anyone looking for such a lesson can turn to the swooning "Muscles" and the deeply melancholic "They Don't Ask Me" to see how to make shoegaze that twangs the heartstrings real hard, look to the raucous "Never Leave" for tips on rocking out noise pop style without overdoing it, or check out "Meet Me with Ease" to learn how to sound exactly like the Swirlies.

Pick pretty much any song and you've got a masterclass on how to mash up brain-rattling noise, pillowy dream pop, and warped shoegaze into something exciting and new. Or into something that's basically as good as the music they are working so hard to revive -- that's the real trick and Weed pull it off on Running Back with ease." - Tim Sendra, AllMusic

Swirlies Share Rare Radio Session, Tour Dates, and More

[press release] This July, 1990s shoegaze icons Swirlies will embark on a two-week tour to celebrate 25 years with no official break-up, a new 7", and the anticipated vinyl reissue of their Blondertongue Audiobaton LP (1993), one of the most influential records from the early US shoegaze scene.

The lineup will include founding members Damon Tutunjian (guitar/vocals), Seana Carmody (guitar/vocals), and Andy Bernick (bass/keyboards). The shows will be Seana's first appearances with the band since 2001. Accompanying the original lineup will be longtime members Adam Pierce (Mice Parade) and Rob Laakso (Kurt Vile & the Violators) on drums and guitar respectively. Both have played in Swirlies since the mid-1990s. Elliott Malvas (You're Jovian) will join on additional guitar and keyboards.

A new, limited edition 7-inch record entitled Swirlies' Magic Strop: Orca Vs. Dragon, containing three tracks from UK radio sessions, will be released just prior to the tour on the band's own Sneaky Flute Empire label. The radio tracks are available to stream now over at SPIN and on SoundCloud (or below).

Also anticipated this summer is a Taang! Records vinyl reissue of their classic Blondertongue Audiobaton LP.

Swirlies formed in Cambridge, Massachusetts in the summer of 1990, and quickly established themselves as central players in the nascent US shoegaze scene (Lilys, Velocity Girl, etc.). Between 1990 and 1992, Swirlies released singles on Slumberland, Pop Narcotic, Simple Machines, and Nervous Records. In 1992, the band signed to Taang!, where they issued number of EPs and LPs, including the early singles compilation What To Do About Them EP (1992), the shoegaze classic Blondertongue Audiobaton LP (1993), the epic They Spent Their Wild Youthful Days In The Glittering World Of The Salons LP (1996), and the remix LP Strictly East Coast Sneaky Flute Music (1998). In the early 2000s, the band released The Yes Girls LP (2000) on its own Sneaky Flute Empire label and Cats of the Wild: Volume Two (2003) on Bubble Core. Since 2003, the band has continued to release cassettes, CDs, and downloadable albums (e.g., the Swirlies' Magic Strop series) on Sneaky Flute Empire.

The band's members have collaborated with a number of noteworthy artists. Damon Tutunjian produced Mew's first LP, co-wrote a number of their songs, and has performed (guitar, bass, vocals, and keyboards) on all of their recordings to date. Rob Laakso plays bass, guitar, and keyboards for Kurt Vile and the Violators. Adam Pierce has played with Mice Parade, HiM, Philistines Jr. and múm.

SWIRLIES' 2015 TOUR (SILVER OSTRICH ANNIVERSARY):

7.01 Hudson, NY @ The Half Moon
7.02 Philadelphia, PA @ Johnny Brenda's
7.03 Allston, MA @ Great Scott
7/04 Brooklyn, NY @ Silent Barn w/ Krill & Advaeta
7.05 Brooklyn, NY @ Baby's All Right
7.06 Washington, DC @Black Cat
7.07 Baltimore, MD @ Ottobar
7.08 Carrboro, NC @ Cat's Cradle
7.09 Atlanta, GA @ The Earl
7.10 Cincinnati, OH @ MOTR Pub
7.11 Indianapolis, IN @ Joyful Noise Recordings
7.12 Chicago, IL @ West Fest
7.13 Detroit, MI @ UFO Factory
7.14 Toronto, ON @ Drake Hotel
7.15 Montreal, QC @ Bar Le "Ritz" P.D.B.

The Jesus And Mary Chain Share "Reverence" from "Live at Barrowlands"

[press release] Three decades after The Jesus and Mary Chain first appeared on the scene in an explosion of noise, leather and attitude, it was announced that one of the most turbulent bands in pop history would be performing their classic debut album, ‘Psychocandy’, live for the first time in its entirety to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the release.

To mark this monumental occasion, on the 31st July, Demon Records are pleased to announce the release of The Jesus and Mary Chain ‘Live at Barrowlands’, a 10” + LP + CD deluxe edition which chronicles the band’s homecoming gig at Glasgow’s legendary Barrowlands in November 2014. Full track listing below.

The deluxe edition is housed in a 40-page hardback book, and includes the LP of the 'Pyschocandy' performance cut to 180-gram heavyweight black vinyl along with the 7-track prequel set containing key singles and fan favourites including 'April Skies', 'Head On' and the monstrous 'Reverence' cut to 10" by legendary engineer Noel Summerville (My Bloody Valentine / The White Stripes) exclusive to the package. Also included is a CD of the entire performance, a candid interview with Jim and William Reid and Alan McGee along with unseen photography from behind the scenes. A 1CD version of Psychocandy Live will also be made available separately.

As part of the ATP Season at the Roundhouse, Camden, the band will perform ‘Psychocandy’ in full on the 5th July for only the second time in the capital since their reformation.

More about Live at Barrowlands:

Their first show since 2008, The Mary Chain were as noisy and belligerent as ever as, both deafening and blinding, sound and light used as weapons against the mesmerised crowd, and as the smoke unfurled and great tides of feedback rose and crashed everyone present surrendered to ‘Psychocandy’ all over again.

Forming in East Kilbride in 1983, The Jesus and Mary Chain announced their arrival on the scene with a series of provocatively short gigs (average length: ten minutes). Staged by nascent scene-maker Alan McGee, brothers Jim and William Reid - aided by the brain-dead stomp of a young Bobby Gillespie on drums – set forth their stall of proto-shoegazing.

Released in 1985, ‘Psychocandy’ was a cocktail of speed and hallucinogens mixed with equal parts Beach Boys’ melody and Velvets’ minimalism. A combination of guitar feedback with traditional pop song structure proved influential on the forthcoming shoegaze genre and alternative rock in general influencing the likes of My Bloody Valentine, Spiritualized and more recently The Horrors.

Speaking about the 30th anniversary of 'Psychocandy', Jim Reid said, “Psychocandy was meant to be a kick in the teeth to all of those who stood in our way at the time, which was practically the whole music industry. In 1985 there were a great many people who predicted no more than a six-month life span for The Mary Chain.”



Track listing:

April Skies
Head On
Some Candy Talking
Psycho Candy
Up Too High
Reverence
Upside Down
------------------
Just Like Honey
The Living End
Taste The Floor
The Hardest Walk
Cut Dead
In A Hole
Taste Of Cindy
Never Understand
Inside Me
Sowing Seeds
My Little Underground
You Trip Me Up
Something’s Wrong
It’s So Hard

Lushes Announce New Album "Service Industry" + Debut New Single "Low Hanging Fruit"

[press release] Quit your day job. What are the pros and cons? How long have you been there? How hard would your life be if you left it? Would you be afraid? Terrified as you approached that last day? Or would you step out onto that sidewalk the first moment you’re free from it, take out a deep breath, stare at the glassy dusk of the street and say, “Thank God”? What do you think?

Brooklyn based duo Lushes have thought about it and Lushes are confused too. Don’t you worry. They’re not looking for an answer. They have an album for you, though – Service Industry – out October 16, 2015.

The album is a rollercoaster through the maze of modern living. It was recorded and mixed by Sonic Youth’s long time engineer Aaron Mullan at Echo Canyon, during a period of intense money, work and life stress.

The sound also came out of the tension between the duo – with singer/guitarist James Ardery having grown up listening to punk and rap, and drummer Joel Myers raised on classical music. But the tension comes into balance with every song, ejecting the band’s music from the cultural hype machine out onto our daily lives.

Opener “Low Hanging Fruit” captures the feeling of hypnotic desire for empty instant gratification, with its angular guitar riffs and softly menacing bass line. “Rub Your Eyes” is an atmospheric and gorgeous meditation on breaking routine, finding peace and determination in finally answering hard life questions you’ve been avoiding for years.

“Circus,” featuring a hysterical saxophone solo by Zs front man Sam Hillmer, is a tongue in cheek commentary on emotional labor, on pretending to be happy while serving a farce – catering, corporate events, whatever. And album closer “Shed Weight” harks back to Lushes’ instinct to shift moods on a dime, with a lush, almost tender chorus swelling at the last minute to a brutal cacophony of industrial feedback, before ejecting the listener back into the world.

Service Industry extends the tensions begun with Lushes’ debut album, What Am I Doing. In their first album, the themes of anxiety were often held back in pursuit of serene moments, brief escapes from our mundane lives. With Service Industry, Lushes give you something more raw, more guitar-and-drum driven, more primal.

The album throws a wrench in things. It stands as a map of a crisis, a bleak and gorgeous snapshot of our world, and a question: why continue living like we do?

You can pre-order Service Industry now. Tour dates below.

Lushes - Service Industry (LP/CD/MP3):

01. Low Hanging Fruit
02. Bleach
03. Auction
04. Rub Your Eyes
05. You Only Have
06. Check
07. Circus
08. Hyperaware
09. Grey Tiles
10. Shed Weight

TOUR DATES:

06.25 Boston, MA @ Out of the Blue Too Gallery
06.26 Utica, NY @ The Dev
06.27 Buffalo, NY @ Hoyt House
06.28 Pittsburgh, PA @ Brillo Box
06.30 Detroit, MI @ Kelly's bar
07.01 Chicago, IL @ Situations
07.02 St Louis, MO @ FOAM
07.03 Columbia MO @ Cafe Berlin
07.04 Carbondale, IL @The Swamp
07.05 Little Rock, AR @ Stickyz
07.07 Hattiesburg, MS @ The Tavern
07.08 New Orleans, LA @ Gasa Gasa
07.09 Birmingham, AL @ Mono Bahm
07.10 Athens, GA @ Go Bar
07.11 Charlotte, NC @ Snug Harbor
07.12 Durham, NC @ Terrace Heater House
07.13 Harrisonburg, VA @ The Golden Pony
07.14 Baltimore, MD @ TBA
07.15 Washington DC @ TBA
07.16 Philadelphia, PA @ The Pharmacy



"... unpredictable... a more riffy and less serene Lushes sound than we heard on What Am I Doing." - Stereogum