Tomorrow Matador Records is reissuing Come's "11:11." If you don't remember the 90s, and really why would you, it's one of the great rock records of… all time? Yup, absolutely. Come toured with Pavement and Nirvana, considered their major label options, and put out three more albums in the 90s, even as half the lineup left. And then… everyone sort of drifted away. Now the original four-some is on tour in Europe; they'll wend their way to America in mid-June. Over the weekend, we Skyped with Come's Thalia Zedek about getting the band back together. She was in Berlin, getting lost; she also has a new album [...]
Remember like six years ago, when My Morning Jacket stopped being My Morning Jacket and changed into something different and Band of Horses started being a better My Morning Jacket than My Morning Jacket themselves? Something like that seems to be happening now with The Hold Steady and Japandroids.
Everyone knows you can't dust for vomit. But, man, Pink Floyd's fingerprints are all over this new song from the wonderful San Francisco band, Girls. (I know that metaphor is sort of backwards, since the thief, or "borrower," leaves his or her fingerprints on the thing they stole from somebody else, rather than vice versa, but for chronological reasons, it doesn't make sense to set it up that way.)
The great Wu-Tang Clan rapper Raekwon releases his next solo album next month. Shaolin Vs. Wu-Tang, it's called, the follow-up to 2009's terrific Only Built 4 Cuban Linx 2. Some of the new music sounds good. The latest song to leak, "Rock n' Roll," which features Rae's frequent collaborator Ghostface Killah, the singer Kobe, and Jim Jones of the Diplomats, sounds less so, to my curmudgeonly autotune-averse ears. But it's interesting to look at which rock n' rollers get namechecked in the lyrics. Not necessarily ones you might expect. For instance, Raekwon's first shout goes out to Willie Nelson.
Suck it, Jackie Brenston: "'That's All Right Mama' by Arthur 'Big Boy' Crudup is the world's oldest rock and roll song, according to Southeastern Louisiana University rock historian Joseph Burns, who also thinks this song could contain the first ever guitar solo break."
Free Energy and Titus Andronicus, "I'm Going Down" (And Bruce Springsteen Covers Throughout History)
Philly's Free Energy and Jersey's Titus Andronicus just finished a tour together. At one of the last shows, last week in Atlanta, the Titus guys joined Free Energy for a beery, raucous rendition of "I'm Goin' Down," a song from Bruce Springsteen's 1984 album, Born in the U.S.A. It's pretty great.
Coincidentally, this is the same Springsteen song NYC's Vampire Weekend has been playing lately.
Yesterday, while researching music videos for a post I'd planned to call "Happy RUSH Hashanah" (because, y'know, hilarious), I came across something much more interesting. You've watched The Wilderness Downtown, the interactive multimedia project Arcade Fire made as a video for their song "We Used to Wait." (If not, you should. It's very cool.) But having watched it, and then watching the video for Rush's "Subdivisions," I was struck by the similarities.
In the new video from Cleveland-based rock band Cloud Nothings, Bill Clinton is dragged by his feet out of a house, through a parking lot and a forest and a field and up a tree—above which he then hangs upside down like the inverted cross symbol of the occult. It's not actually Bill Clinton, but it is actually pretty terrifying. It feels a little like we're watching someone die of a heart attack. The song it accompanies is the first one on a new album, Attack on Memory, which has been getting rave reviews and comes out today. I like it a lot. It reminds me [...]
Here you will find a collection of "Rock Against Drugs" PSAs from the '80s. The fact that I can actually remember so many of these indicates that I did not do enough drugs, so I guess they worked. It also means I am old. Anyway, Lou Reed, Phil Collins and Belinda Carlisle make appearances, among others.
The versatile and virtuosic Irish guitarist Gary Moore died in his sleep Saturday night while on vacation in Spain. Moore did several stints playing lead guitar for the forever awesome, never-enough-appreciated Thin Lizzy in the '70s and '80s—most notably on the 1979 album, Black Rose—and enjoyed a long and successful career as solo artist, too. He's in the silver blazer in the video above.
In a move seen as an attempt to form a coalition of grizzled '60s relics and disaffected thirteen-year-old boys, outgoing Republican Florida governor Charlie Crist said Tuesday he wanted to pardon the late Doors singer Jim Morrison for his 1970 conviction on charges of indecent exposure and profanity at a concert in Miami.
"He had all of the room in the world to do it because there was nothing else there in the way. There was no band in the way, no backing singers, no arrangement of instruments-nothing in the way of him doing it. The only thing there other than me was him, and he was using pieces of me on top of me. It worked out real good." -Neil Young talks about his experience working with producer Daniel Lanois on the new album Le Noise, which comes out tomorrow. This selection from it, "Walk With Me," is a fine example of Neil all piled up on top of himself. [...]
Oh my God, psyched! As if they read the Awl and know what a crappy August we've all been having, the folks at NASA are holding a contest where the public can choose "wake-up music" for the astronauts who man the penultimate space shuttle voyage, mission STS-133, scheduled to launch November 1st. Go to the NASA website, where you can listen to 40 songs that have been piped in to start astronauts' days on past missions (and you get to hear the radio communication back and forth with ground control, too) and vote for your favorites. I voted for Elton John's "Rocket Man," because… What do you mean [...]
See now, Bob, if you had just done it like that back in 1991, we would have no problems.
"The New Brunswick performance was a particular bright spot in a day packed with highlights—we were shooting Titus playing a basement show at a place called Fuck Mountain. The show was wall-to-wall with college kids who were really fired up to see the band return to their low-ceilinged roots." —New Jersey director Tom Scharpling talks about the extra live footage he recorded while making his video for New Jersey band Titus Andronicus's “No Future Part Three: Escape From No Future” back in February. Like the performance above, for example. The idea of being "proud" to be from New Jersey is a weird one. ("Hey Eddie, can [...]
Dear aliens arriving for the first time from outer space, or caveman, unthawed and revived after being frozen in a glacier for 30,000 years, please disregard the label at the top of the new video from recent Cash Money Records signee, Porcelain Black. This is not what rock n' roll actually looks like. Or sounds like. For that, please reference the new song from Toronto's Fucked Up. From their forthcoming rock opera (!?), David Comes to Life, which is due in June. It's the bomb.
Here is Rock, a.k.a. "Da Rockness Monstah," one-half of the Brooklyn duo Heltah Skeltah, rhyming over the beat to Tupac's "Ambitionz As a Ridah." (It is, I think, the best beat of any Tupac song; it was made by Snoop's cousin, Daz Dillinger, of the Dog Pound.) Fifteen years ago, Heltah Skeltah was a major part of the Boot Camp Clik, a collective that also included Black Moon, Smif-n-Wessun (who changed their name to the Cocoa Brovaz after the firearms company sued them), and O.G.C. (Originoo Gunn Clappaz), and recorded for Duck Down Entertainment, the label Black Moon MC Buckshot started with his partner Dru Ha. Boot Camp [...]
"It's a similar feeling from being in a community of punk rockers as a teenager and the feeling I still get today when I'm in a community of skeptical scientists. The idea with both is that you challenge authority, you challenge the dogma. You challenge the doctrine in order to make progress. The thrill of science is the process. It's a social process. It's a process of collective discovery. It's debate, it's experimentation and it's verification of claims that might be false. It's the greatest foundation for a society." -Greg Graffin, founder of the L.A. punk band Bad Religion, is also an evolutionary biologist at U.C.L.A. Talking to [...]
Huh. Here's a blast from the past. Eighteen years after they sang together on the Lemonheads' lovely It's a Shame About Ray album, head Lemonhead Evan Dando (he for whom the term "alternahunk" was coined) and the Blake Babies' Juliana Hatfield have formed an official duo. Both from Boston, longtime friends-and-maybe-more, the two are playing NYC's Mercury Lounge next Wednesday. They've been recording together, and they've remastered their old song "My Drug Buddy." Sounds as nice as ever.