Tig Notaro returned to Conan last night delivering a hilarious performance including a new bit that shows the amazing, or not so amazing things you can do with a stool. A true master of comedic timing, Tig shines bright in this video. Tig’s new comedy album Good One was recently named one of the top ten comedy albums of 2011 by MTV. You can pick up your copy right HERE.
Pitchfork.tv caught The War On Drugs in New York earlier this year. Check out an absolutely transcending live performance of “Come to the City” off of this year’s Slave Ambient along with a great interview with the band, and intro from front man Adam Granduciel. The War On Drugs are on the home stretch of their current North American tour that’ll finish up with two shows: Dec. 12 in New York opening for The National at Beacon Theatre and a hometown show with fellow Phiadelphians Sun Airway at Union Transfer on Dec. 17. After the holidays you’ll be able to catch The War On Drugs in Europe in February and on tour with Sharon Van Etten starting in March. Check out the full tour dates HERE. Spin.com has a great retrospective of The War On Drugs’ touring exploits this year with photos taken by WOD bassist Dave Hartley who captures some brilliant moments.
Local Seattle video producers Frank TV caught up with Little Scream while they were in town earlier this month. Above you can watch Little Scream perform “The Lamb” amidst the Washington state wilderness lit by just a scant string of lights and flashlights floating around. It’s a simple set up, but one that works to glorious effect. Little Scream has a few more live dates before years end. Catch em in Washington DC, Philly, and New York in the coming weeks. Full info on those dates HERE.
With touring dates yet to come in 2011, The War On Drugs are already casting big plans for 2012. After a February spent touring Europe The War On Drugs will set their sights on America, touring the West on a truly epic bill with Sharon Van Etten. With their new album Slave Ambient receiving the coveted “Best New Music” and already a front runner for one of 2011′s albums of the year, The War On Drugs have been heavily praised for their recorded material. Live the band continues to cast a spell creating “a magical wormhole out of electricity, muscle and faded blue jeans” (LA Times). It’s a performance that “not only lives up to the hype behind the new album; but definitely surpasses it” (Jambase). The Minneapolis City Pages upon seeing WOD live simply stated:
“The War On Drugs… confidently delivered one of the best shows of the year.” Catch the War On Drugs in December in the Midwest and East with newly annouced opener Sub Pop recording artist Still Corners; and starting today you can purchase tickets for WOD’s March tour with Sharon Van Etten. Check out the full tour dates RIGHT HERE.
In other news, January 24 The War On Drugs will release the new Come to the City 7-inch single, featuring the sprawling centerpiece to Slave Ambient with the previously unreleased “Don’t Fear the Ghost” b-side.
In October, Little Scream will once again take to the North American highways in support of their debut album The Golden Record. Little Scream will be supported on most dates by Partisan recording artist BOBBY. You can check out the full dates on our tour dates page.
You can also watch Little Scream’s recent performance with La Blogotheque HERE. It’s a beautiful serenade as Laurel brings the full band, performing as they stroll through Trinity Bellwoods park in Toronto. And click on the link below to hear the new remix of “The Heron and the Fox” by Philadelphia’s Work Drugs which RCRDLBL says “sparseness is replaced with soft-focus indie pop that tweaks Laurel Sprengelmeyer’s voice into the realm of contemporaries like Nite Jewel.”
Things got a little cray cray at the MTV Video Music Awards last night and our own Tig Notaro was on the red carpet interviewing for PopDust.com. Click RIGHT HERE to see Busta Rhymes get fresh with Tig, Kelly Rowland and Tig compare wardrobes, J-Woww’s insight on Hurricane Irene, Nick Swardson drink Gaga’s boob sweat, Rick Ross, The Black Keys’ Patrick Carney and many many more.
This Sunday at 9pm (eastern) MTV hosts their annual Video Music Awards. Our own favorite comedian Tig Notaro will be covering the Red Carpet at the VMAs for PopDust.com. We for one can’t wait to see Tig interviewing all the glitterati as they make their way down the carpet. The real burning question on our minds is if Tig will be there will Taylor Dane somehow be there too??? Read more about Tig covering the VMAs over at PopDust right HERE.
Last night Tig Notaro took her dry wit to the stage of Late Night with Jimmy Fallon. Click above to watch her perform. Tig’s new album Good One came out last week, peaking as the #2 album in the iTunes Comedy Store. Comics including Aziz Ansari, Seth Meyers, Sarah Silverman, and Garfunkel and Oates took to Twitter this week singing the praises of Good One. Jimmy Fallon himself tweeted yesterday “I know I’m late to the party, but Tig Notaro is my new favorite comedian.” Today we release a new track from Good One the incredible “Little Titties.” And tonight in the very city where Good One was recorded, Bloomington, IN, Tig begins a national tour that’ll take her coast to coast. Check out the full tour dates after the jump.
Click on the image above and you will be transported away into the depths of Gardens & Villa’s video for “Spacetime.” Part Funkadelic, part Forbidden Zone, this David South directed video blends the best of 70s campy sci-fi coolness and makes it new.
Gardens & Villa play select dates in North America this month before meeting up with rising talent Youth Lagoon, for a string of dates in September and October including a performance at Pygmalion Festival in Urbana, IL. Youth Lagoon’s Trevor Powers caught Gardens & Villa at a show in his hometown of Boise, ID earlier this year and the two bands found a fast friendship between them. Now they reunite to bring two of this year’s most exciting new bands to a city near you. See the full tour dates after the jump.
Over the past year Suuns have built a reputation for supremely intense live shows “full of thrash, immediacy, and spastic explosiveness” (Brooklyn Vegan), “with an unhinged intensity uncharacteristic of any band in their genre” (Death + Taxes) or more simply and direct “Drone Scholars” (New York Times) and the “#1 Best New Band of 2011″ (NME). We have brought you videos for “Up Past The Nursery” and “Pie IX” (NSFW) both of which capture the dark and dangerous aesthetic, but neither has properly captured the sheer force of Suuns live show. Now thanks to director Daniel Ryan of FOR NO ONE.tv, we have a new video that puts you onstage with the band as they cast their “Gaze” right into your eye sockets.
Suuns are currently tearing up the Summer Festival Scene in Europe and Canada with recent performances at Primavera Sound, North by Northeast, and 13 more festivals peformances yet to come including appearances at Pukkelpop, Off Festival and Greenman. But never fear America, in September Suuns will be touring with Handsome Furs in the West and will be playing select dates in the rest of the country in this fall along a headlining Canadaian tour and a co-headlining North American tour with PS I Love You. See Full Dates after the jump.
Nightlands has put together a new digital single called Covers which appropriately contains covers of Lindsey Buckingham’s 1981 hit “Trouble” as well as Scott Walker’s “Big Louise.” Both covers pay homage to the original while undergoing the Nightlands treatment, taking on a lusher more dream-like quality. Nightlands is offering both songs as a free download, just hit the link below. If you like these covers, check out more of Nightlands’ original work from their full-length Forget the Mantra HERE.
In other news, Nightlands will be touring North America with Sondre Lerche starting May 31. In addition to opening the shows, Dave Hartley the creative force behind Nightlands, will also be playing bass in Sondre’s band on this tour. Check out the full dates after the jump.
Earlier this week Vandervelde performed on Music City Roots, a weekly live musical variety show in Nashville performed in front of a live audience and broadcast live on Lightning 100. Fast forward to the 1:11 mark to catch Vandervelde’s performance.
May 3 Vandervelde will release a new digital single including the new retro-jammer “More Than You Can Feel” but you can sample the song today. RCRDLBL premiered the song this morning:
“Channeling Zuma-era Neil Young, mixed with the weary cocaine fanaticism of Marc Bolan (get a lot of that cowbell in the song’s hook! It’s the most melodic cowbell we’ve heard in…ever probably). The tremolo-drenched guitars are retro but massive, a nice foil to Vandervelde’s warbling tenor vocals, communicating that age-old pain of people everywhere: “I need you/All I need is you/More than you know.” A fairly straightforward sentiment that Vandervelde makes work with nothing more than sincerity and a few chords. And a lot of cowbell.”
Stay tuned for the official release on May 3 to hear the wonderfully boozy B-side “Beer” co-written with the late great Jay Bennett. Vandervelde also hits the road in May bringing new tracks from a forthcoming full-length to the stage for the first time. Check out the dates after the jump.
Today we unleash a new, stark, dangerous, evocative, and sexy video for Suuns “Pie IX,” directed by Frederique Berube. It’s further proof that Suuns know exactly what they’re up to. The video is not safe for work unless you work where we do, where nothing is NSFW. You can also listen to the mp3 for “Pie IX” right HERE.
Suuns tour Europe this month, and in March and April, in addition to playing South by Southwest, Suuns will join both Crystal Castles and The Black Angels respectively on tour. Each of these artists represent a side of Suuns’ sound: Crystal Castles, the cool electronic ferocity; The Black Angels, the swaggering psych-rock assault. Check out the full tour dates after the jump.
Nightlands’ David Hartley is in the creative pocket at the moment. On the heels of his lovely Secretly Canadian debut, Forget the Mantra, and at the precipice of Nightlands first-ever live engagements, Hartley gives us the All The Way 7″ accompanied here in a new video directed by Audrey Smith and featuring Hartley himself. It’s Forget the Mantra‘s strange lil’ bro, doing all sorts of interesting, unknowable shit in his room all night long.
“All The Way” is an ode to pain and reinvention, a joyful noise about hopelessness. Written, recorded and mixed in one day. Like Jeff Lynne floating down Billy Joel’s River of Dreams on a drone raft. Its flipside, “Buggin Out,” absolutely comes from an obsession with Bo Hansson’s Lord of the Rings (1970), the epic Swedish instrumental masterpiece. The skeleton of the track was played live on Hartley’s Hammond 144, originally clocking in at almost 16 minutes of synth/organ madness. After some Casio/Korg overdubbing, the piece was chopped to the still-epic, seizure-enducing 6 minutes we have before us.
The All The Way 7″ will be available at shows on Nightlands first U.S. tour, which starts tomorrow at Glasslands in Brooklyn. Check out Nightlands All The Way 7″ album artwork and a full list of tour dates after the jump.
Starting March 17 The War On Drugs will embark on a month-long tour with Destroyer that’ll take them across the U.S. and Canada. Destroyer will be supporting their forthcoming new record Kaputt which comes out this month on Merge Records. The War On Drugs will be performing material from their most recent release the Future Weather EP, as well as their brilliant full-length Wagonwheel Blues. Expect new material as well as The War On Drugs have been working furiously in the studio on their next full-length record, set for release in 2011. Check out the full tour dates after the jump.
We just received a fantastic recording of Bobb Trimble performing live in New York City last year. Bobb has made only a handful of live appearances since we reissued his two cult classics Iron Curtain Innocence and Harvest of Dreams back in 2007, but only now has a quality recording of one of these performances emerged. Check out this fantastic recording of Bobb performing “Armour of the Shroud” a stand-out track from Harvest of Dreams.
Earlier this week Jens Lekman shared some new material at his show at the Mondrian Hotel in Los Angeles. Included, and captured in the video above is a new song titled “Waiting for Kirsten” In this song Jens sings of his failed attempts to meet Kirsten Dunst at last year’s Way Out West Festival in his hometown of Gothenborg, Sweden; after she publicly stated that she is a fan. As Jens heads out to a club only to find out later that Dunst was turned away at the door Jens sings “In Gothenburg we don’t have VIP lines/ In Gothenburg we don’t care who you are/ The VIP lines aren’t to clubs/ but to health care, apartments, and jobs.” Jens’ wonderful way of crafting a story is in full effect here, signs of good things to come. You can check out more videos from Jens’ LA performance over at Rawk Blog. Jens Lekman plays two sold out shows in Brooklyn this week, Thursday and Friday at the Green Union Building.
Nightlands’ Forget the Mantra started as a simple dream journal where Dave Hartley would record music ideas in the morning, upon waking. It has since blossomed from a mere catalog of thoughts and ideas, a bedroom project in the most literal of senses, into an album that masterfully conveys the feel of dream.
Today, Nightlands shares with us the vision of director Mark Shoneveld of YVYNYL using found footage from the 1970s that conveys a life of simple pleasures, pets, love, music-making, surfing, art, and friendship to create a new video for Nightlands’ “Suzerain (A Letter to the Judge).” We are also very excited to share the news that, in January, Nightlands will be performing live for the first time in select cities on the East Coast and the Midwest. You can find full tour dates below.
01/20 Brooklyn, NY- Glasslands w/ The Tony Castles, and Dustin Wong
01/22 Philadelphia, PA- The Ox w/ Ape School
01/26 Chicago, IL- The Empty Bottle
01/27 Pontiac, MI- The Pike Room
01/28 Bloomington, IN- FARM Root Cellar w/ Tammar
If you live in the Bloomington, IN area you won’t want to miss this free event at The Bishop. Author Steven Blush will be in town as part of his current book tour promoting the second edition of his book American Hardcore also in attendance will be a panel of musicians from some phenomenal Midwest Punk and Hardcore bands such as The Gizmos, The Repellents, The Panics, and The Zero Boys (who reissued their seminal album Vicious Circle last year on SC). They’ll be discussing the Midwest’s role in the Hardcore movement of the early 80s and will show clips from both the movie version of American Hardcore and vintage live footage from Zero Boys’ DVD Live at the Pizza Castle 1981. NUVO has a great interview with Steven about this event, which you can check out right HERE. Oh and did I mention that this is FREE??
Park The Van recording artists Generationals, just released a new EP featuring remixes of their song “When They Fight They Fight” by Ra Ra Riot, Little Ones, and Secretly Canadian’s own Richard Swift. Swift adds some big 80s synth to his remix as well as a fat ass bass line that is signature Swift. You can stream Swift’s remix and the rest of the EP right HERE. Btw, just in case you were wonderin’, Swift’s face remix above is a little gem from some hotel hilarity circa SXSW 2007.
Last week Jens Lekman announced two new shows one in Los Angeles and one in New York. The New York show sold out all 400 tickets in mere minutes. So due to popular demand Jens has announced a second show via Brooklyn Vegan this morning. The new show will be December 9 at the Green Union Building (450 Union Street) in Brooklyn. You can purchase tickets for this new show right HERE.
Jens Lekman took up residency at The Empty Bottle in Chicago this past January and made welcoming in the New Year a warmer kinder experience. Since then Jens has toured in Australia, New Zealand, Indonesia, Phillipines, mainland Europe and the UK, but not until now has he returned to the States.
You can find Jens performing solo in Los Angeles December 4 at the Skybar at the Mondrian Hotel (8440 Sunset Blvd.) at 8pm, as part of the Mondrian’s new concert series that will also feature performances by Glasser, Warpaint, Yacht, and Peter from Peter, Bjorn, and John among others. To reserve a spot at this show, RSVP at email@example.com.
Jens will be in Brooklyn December 10 performing at the Green Building on Union (450 Union St.), doors at 8pm and show at 9:30pm. This will also be a solo show. Expect some surprises including new material. Lekman himself says “It will be special and maybe we can have one of those house parties afterwards, like we had last time? If my friends neighbors are cool with that, I’ll let you know.”
If you missed Jens’ latest song “The End of the World is Bigger Than Love,” you can still download it HERE. Stay tuned for lots more from Jens in 2011!
CMJ Festival takes over New York and Brooklyn for five days every year, but it only took one day and two performances for Suuns to take over the festival. Apparently the tasty soul food and pies at Pies N’ Thighs is the perfect fuel for dark drone electro-pop (I should have known something brilliant was in the works when the guys got all Popeyed up, devouring heaping plates of creamed spinach). Suuns started the evening with a set at the Brooklyn Vegan showcase at Music Hall of Williamsburg where apparently hipsters were actually dancing (!) to their set. Photos of the performance can be seen HERE.
From there Suuns headed into New York for a late night set at Piano’s where they looked downright deadly under a wash of murderous red light. They performed with a supreme intensity that brought the crowd to a fever pitch. After witnessing this performance Jon Pareles of the New York Times called Suuns “Drone Scholars” continuing, “They can let a chord ballon into psychedelic meditation (abetted by a guest saxophone honker), work a drone riff into a dance beat, hurl one at hardcore speed for a intense one-minute song, or peck at it with the obsessiveness of a kraut-rock band… there was rigorous strategy behind every gorgeous onslaught” (read the full review HERE). NPR was in the house too, and captured a little video of the set which you can check out above.
Both Suuns and David Vandervelde will be performing at CMJ this week. For those of you in New York or attending the fest come and check these guys out. Suuns are hot off the release of their new album Zeroes QC which Pitchfork reviewed this morning saying: “Few bands this young are operating at quite this scale, and fewer still have the brass–and the patience–to pull off a big glitzy, complex record like Zeroes QC.” And David Vandervelde, is our resident King of Shred. Reference Vandy’s “Learn How to Hang” for an afternoon pick-me-up.
10/21 New York, NY- CMJ @ Solar (DJ set only)
10/21 Brooklyn, NY- CMJ @ Music Hall of Williamsburg
10/21 New York, NY- CMJ @ Pianos- Secretly Canadian/ Dead Oceans/ Jagjaguwar Showcase
10/22 Brooklyn, NY- CMJ @ Littlefield- Park the Van Showcase
10/23 New York, NY- CMJ @ Pianos 3:30pm, Bowery Presents Party
10/23 New York, NY- CMJ @ Cameo Gallery, 6pm
The War On Drugs’ new EP Future Weather comes out October 26 (early 2011 in the U.K.), but you can pre-order it today and receive an instant download of the record. Check out our latest offering from the record “The History of Plastic.” This album closing deep cut is a gorgeous eight-minute meditative musical exploration.
Suuns are currently burning their way down the West Coast and earlier this week and The Portland Mercury had this to say about their new album Zeroes QC: “swirling kaleidoscopic chasms of psychedelic rock butting up against off-kilter dance music… with jagged squeals and rapid-fire dancepunk deconstructions sitting alongside passages of vacuum-suck quiet and heartbeat murmurs.” The Merc continued “Suuns are slightly terrifying, steadfastly forward thinking, and utterly musical.” Starting today you can get an early listen as the album is being featured on Myspace music and is streaming in its entirety on Suuns’ MySpace page. Check out right HERE.
Suuns performed at KRCX in Denver last week. KRCX just posted a review of the session (which you can check out HERE) including live cuts of “Up Past The Nursery” and “Pie IX.” Every individual element of these tracks on a platter of crystal clarity, showing the mighty power and swagger of Suuns live. I know your momma told you not to, but go ahead, stare away at these Suuns.
This fall the elusive Bobb Trimble will make two rare live performances in his home state of Massachusetts. For years, Bobb Trimble’s two albums, Iron Curtain Innocence, and Harvest of Dreams were the stuff legends were made of, psych-rock records so rare that even Keyser Soze would have a hard time finding one. We here at Secretly Canadian were lucky enough to reissue these highly sought after albums in 2007. Now you have an opportunity to see Bobb Trimble live. Trimble will perform at the Homegrown II Festival in Boston on October 15, along with Marissa Nadler, Ty Segall, Major Stars and others. Then, November 13 in Somerville, MA Trimble will perform at the Deep Heaven 2 Festival. The December Sound, Screen Vinyl Image, and The Vandelles will also be appearing.
Above is the first visual offering from Montreal’s Suuns. The new video for the darkly seductive “Up Past The Nursery” is a visual feast of fireworks, ethereal forest spectres, and images of the band encased in crystalline waters where they never seem to quite be able to break the surface. Directed by Petros Kolyvas, and Suuns’ own Ben Shemie, Suuns new video illustrates the bands knack to keep things playful despite their own ominous and eerie vibes.
Suuns’ debut full-length album Zeroes QC which comes out in stores October 12, is now available for pre-order. You can pre-order the album HERE and you’ll receive an instant download of the new album.
That’s David Hartley standing amidst those amber waves. You may know him as bassist for The War On Drugs, but as of today we also know him as Nightlands. Nightlands is Dave’s new solo project and we’re uber excited to release Nightlands debut album Forget the Mantra on November 9 (November 8 in the U.K.) in LP and digital formats.
Hartley began Nightlands as a project of archiving musical ideas that occurred in his dreams with a bedside tape recorder. Already a very personal and heady approach, Hartley added to this bits and pieces of found recordings from his past. The end result is both an enormous sound with towering vocal harmonies and melodic layers as well as a deeply introspective look into the artist’s inner-mind. It’s an album that equally fascinates and inspires, as well as soothing something deep within. It’s a beautiful album and it makes us very happy to call Nightlands part of our artistic family. Dig into a couple of sample tracks from the album below. And make sure to give a good peak at the mesmerizing album artwork done by architect and artist Paul Rudolph.
It was a sunny July day in Chicago. After a long night of festivities following the opening day of Pitchfork Festival, Adam and Mike from The War On Drugs, myself, and some colleagues here at the label dragged ourselves and our hangovers up to Wrigleyville to see the Cubbies play. The Cubs lost that day, but it was still a killer afternoon in the sun as we were all treated to the esteemed privilege of actually stepping out onto the field at Wrigley.
Today marks an equally joyous occasion as I have the honor of announcing The War On Drugs first release since Wagonwheel Blues marked their debut two years ago. On October 26 Future Weather featuring eight new jams from the Drugs will be available in digital and LP formats. Check out the album artwork, track listing below, as well as the new single “Comin’ Through,” a hazy late summer show stopper that just begs for a session of kickin’ it on the porch with a cold beer.
Antony and the Johnsons will release their five track EP Thank You For Your Love on August 24th via Secretly Canadian. The title-track is the lead single from the forthcoming album Swanlights also being released by Secretly Canadian on October 12. The album is now available for pre-order including bundles consisting of the full length CD and EP, vinyl LP and EP, and book with CD and EP will be available for sale on August 5th. Those who purchase the bundles will instantly receive an advance download of the EP. Click here to pre-order Swanlights and Thank You For Your Love.
On “Thank You For Your Love”, Antony expresses a soul-infused cry of gratitude, but the song progresses into urgency, leaving behind the 4/4 rhythms and breaking into an emotional gallop that reveals an underlying pathos. “You Are The Treasure” is the calm after the storm, “My Lord My Love” closes the A side as a song for a lost childhood. The B side features two unusual covers accompanied by Kevin Barker on Acoustic Guitar, the first is Bob Dylan’s “Pressing On”, Antony’s take is sweet, upbeat and beautiful. “Imagine” collaboration with avant-garde ambient composer William Basinski is a foreboding take on John Lennon’s hallowed song.
Artwork for the EP features photographs Antony took when he first arrived in NYC as a teenager in the early 90’s.
Antony and the Johnsons will also release their new album, “Swanlights”, on October 12th in the US via Secretly Canadian. Abrams Image will simultaneously release a special edition of “Swanlights” which will include the CD inside a 144-page hard cover book containing Antony’s paintings, collages, photography and writing. The album only version of “Swanlights” on Secretly Canadian will also include the song “Flétta”, a duet with Björk. The album and book are a continuation of Antony’s work exploring his connection to the natural world.
Thank You For Your Love
Thank You For Your Love Track List:
1. Thank You For Your Love
2. You Are The Treasure
3. My Lord My Love
4. Pressing On
Two weeks ago we announced our signing of Montreal’s Suuns to Secretly Canadian. We also presented the world with it’s first taste of the Suuns sound via a free EP which you can still download HERE. Now we are proud to announce the details of Suuns’ first full-length album Zeroes QC, which will be available in the U.S. October 12 and early 2011 in the U.K.
Zeroes QC was recorded at Breakglass Studios in Montreal with The Besnard Lakes’ Jace Lasek at the production helm. Lasek worked with Suuns during a busy year that included recording new albums by Stars and Land of Talk among others, but he still had time to drop us an inital understated note saying “Thought you might like to hear them. They’re pretty cool.” Zeroes QC furthers the sound found on the band’s opening EP. Still present is the slinky, sexy, opaque and razor sharp electro rock, but in Lasek’s deft hands Suuns’ sound is defined and refined, more fully explored. From the cranky beats of opener “Armed For Peace” to the funeral organ wash of closer “Organ Blues” Zeroes QC crashes, burns, rebuilds, explodes, rinses and repeats. However, through it all a groove -the kind that begs for an open road on a steamy summer night- keeps the bpm at a steady clip. Below you’ll find a download of “Arena” the first single from Zeroes QC and the quintessence of the Suuns’ sound.
Jens Lekman is back in the studio working on material for the follow up to his 2007 release Night Falls On Kortedala. We’ve heard a few rumors and rumblings surfacing from Jens here and there, including a playlist he recently put together of some of his favorite tunes called A Summer In 3/4 Time. However, we were pleasantly surprised when Jens contacted us and said he has a new song to share with the world. Entitled “The End Of The World Is Bigger Than Love,” you can download this new song by clicking on the widget above or by heading over to the Small Talk blog on Jens’ website HERE. Below is a message from Jens that shares the story behind this new song:
“It was the day before the american election 2008 and I was filled with a hopelessness that only a McCain supporter could have shared with me at the time. I was in Washington DC to perform for swedish TV, sitting in the couch with a profesional smile on my face, joking with the hosts and discussing the lobster with the TV chef. I saw the clips online sometime ago, it’s amazing what an actor I can be if I really make an effort.
I lived in America back then, up in New York. At the time I felt like everything I touched was turning to shit and I had decided to put everything on one card. Subconsciously I knew I needed to hit the bottom so I could work my way up again. I needed confirmation, I needed someone to tell me it wasn’t going to work out, not this way. Yes, there was a girl involved in this. I was very much in love with her.
Some things you just go through. You don’t write about it, you don’t turn it into art because it can’t be turned into art. I didn’t write any songs that year because you can’t pour manure into an espresso machine and expect a cappucino to come out. When they announced the results and the streets filled up with people celebrating I felt happy to be part of something bigger than myself. It was a feeling that lasted me until the very last days of December 2008 when I finally sat down in my old teenage room at my parents house and I wrote this song. Then the year ended.
It’s a song of hope. When love turns it’s back on you it’s nice to know there’s a world out there that doesn’t give a shit about your problems. That forces you to keep your head held high and move on. A world that is fragile and beautiful. Maybe it can sound cold to some of you, but let me make it clear that I believe in love, I just get so wrapped up in it sometimes that I need to put it into proportion. It’s something you have to do a lot when you’re Jens Lekman.”
For those of you in Europe, Jens will be there soon….
08/01 Dublin, Ireland- Whelans w/ The Blow
08/02 Manchester, UK- The Deaf Institute w/ The Blow & Bill Wells
08/03 London, UK- Union Chapel w/ The Blow & Bill Wells
08/04 Paris, France- Nouveau Casino w/ The Blow
08/05 Amsterdam, Netherlands- Paradiso w/ The Blow
Suuns music was delivered to us one afternoon accompanied with a short note from Jace Lasek of The Besnard Lakes and Montreal’s Breakglass Studios, where he had recently recorded the band. “Thought you might like to hear them. They’re pretty cool,” his note simply read. And while, technically this is correct, it hardly prepared us for the near immediate infatuation with Suuns’ blistering, dark electro and arena-sized psych. Elements of Suicide, Clinic and This Heat simultaneously delivered with a youthful swagger and a learned restraint, Suuns rapidly became the phantoms of our evening listening hours. And now, we are proud to share Suuns’ music with you, albeit in a missive that absolutely explodes Lasek’s modest brevity all to hell.
Montreal’s Suuns were born during the summer of 2006 when vocalist/guitarist Ben Shemie and guitarist/bassist Joe Yarmush got together to make some beats which quickly evolved into a few songs. The duo were soon joined by drummer Liam O’Neill and bassist/keyboardist Max Henry to complete the line-up.
As an introduction to the young men of Suuns, we are offering a free download of Suuns’ first release, Zeroes EP, that to date has only been available through Other Music and at Suuns live shows. Zeroes EP also contains early versions of soon-to-be album cuts “Arena” and “PVC.” Minimalist rhythms are equally informed by Joy Division and Can, often wrapped in a noisy squall of droning guitars and pulsing synths, it’s the pitch perfect primer for Suuns vision. “I killed a man when I was 11 years old, but I’m innocent,” snarls Shemie on EP opener “The Disappearance of the Skyscraper” over an organ-and-drum stomp that feels like a switchblade-carrying version of Silver Apples. Shemie’s close-mic’d sing/speak is as metronomic as it is melodic; in “Arena” Shemie’s rhythmic “What-choo, what-choo”’s are reminiscent of Suicide’s Alan Vega as he leads the band’s death disco groove into a bloodbath of razor-sharp guitars. Download all six songs from the Zeroes EP, below.
Suuns are also currently touring the East Coast w/ Parlovr and will be touring with Land of Talk and The Besnard Lakes this fall. Check out full tour dates after the jump, and stay tuned for news of Suuns new full-length record, coming very soon.
The Hives, best known for their trademark black and white uniforms, blistering live performances, and hits like “Hate to Say I Told You So” and “Main Offender” apparently know their punk history as well. Last weekend they performed at Rock am Ring (Rock in the Ring) and Rock im Park (Rock in the Park) Germany’s largest music festival and one of the world’s largest with over 85,000 people attending this year. The Hives performance was live broadcast on MTV Germany and included a killer cover of Zero Boys’ “Civilizations Dying” from their album Vicious Circle (reissued by Secretly Canadian last year). Check out the video after the jump and see vintage footage of Indiana’s punk legends Zero Boys performing the original at the Pizza Castle in Indianapolis circa 1981.
Foreign Born stopped by the studios of Oregon Public Radio and laid down a few tracks on their most recent tour. Along w/a couple of cuts, “It Grew On You” and “Early Warnings” off of their most recent album Person To Person, Foreign Born also took a trip in the way back machine, digging into their hive mind to bring you “The Entryway” off of their 2005 debut EP In The Remote Woods. You can check out the entire session, captured on video HERE.
Jens Lekman guests on Tracey Thorn’s new solo record Love And It’s Opposite (out May 17) covering Lee Hazelwood’s “Come on Home to Me.” You can download the album’s first single “Oh, The Divorces” now by going here. On “Oh, The Divorces” Tracey sings “Oh Jens, oh Jens/ Your songs seem to look through a different lens/ You’re still so young/ Love ends just as easy it’s begun.” The album also features guest appearances by members of Hot Chip and Cortney Tidwell. This is Tracey’s third solo record since her days in Everything But The Girl. Coincidentally, Everything But The Girl’s first single way back in 1982 was a cover of Cole Porter’s song “Night And Day.” Cole Porter was born in Peru, Indiana, and Secretly Canadian is of course based in Bloomington, Indiana. So while Jens may be from Sweden, and Tracey from England, it all comes back to Indiana. Six degrees of Indiana, people. You can find more info on Tracey’s new album via Pitchfork.