Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Ok, this time it appears to be for real

Editors are doing a quick jaunt to the U.S. - finally! As their album The Back Room is one of my top 5 for 2005, I was very disappointed to see that their September show at the Mercury Lounge was cancelled. Alas, they will finally make it to the Merc on January 20. Write that down.

The dates for their short U.S. tour, noticeably avoiding the flyover states:

January 15th, 2006 - USA: SAN DIEGO CASBAH
January 17th, 2006 - USA: LOS ANGELES CINESPACE
January 19th, 2006 - USA: SAN FRANCISCO POPSCENE
January 20th, 2006 - USA: NEW YORK MERCURY LOUNGE
January 22nd, 2006 - USA: ALLSTON GREAT SCOTT

Monday, November 28, 2005

Good news from Notting Hill. A shipment of gold has arrived for Mr. Anderson

Saint Etienne fans rejoice. In support of their new album, Tales from the Turnpike House, they will tour the States this winter and will stop at Irving Plaza on Febrary 13th. But tickets here. The after party will be presented by Le One Night Stand at Fat Baby, and Bob will take a turn manning the decks.

Also, the band is releasing Nice Price in a few weeks - a fan club cd which includes different mixes of some of their best tracks over the years, such as "Nothing Can Stop Us (alternative vocal)," "7 Ways 2 Love (Sarah vocal, original white label)," "Who Do You Think You Are (original mix, Debsey vocal)," "Like A Motorway (demo)," "Lose That Girl (demo)," "Heart Failed (In The Back Of A Taxi) (demo)."

Friday, November 25, 2005

Hot Bands Worldwide?

Last week, Information Leafblower listed the results of the "Top 40 Bands in America" designated by a cadre of mainly indie-rock bloggers. Here's the top ten:

1. Sufjan Stevens
2. The National
3. Kanye West
4. LCD Soundsytem
5. Sleater-Kinney
6. The Hold Steady
7. Green Day
8. The Fiery Furnices
9. The Decemberists
10. Spoon

After reviewing this list, I realize that I actually do not like much American music. Of the so-called "top" bands, I only like LCD Soundsystem, We are Scientists, and Out Hud. With the exception of a couple of mainstream pop acts, most of the bands on the list were American indie, which kinda gets into emo and folksy types of stuff. Not my bag. (Lists like these are, of course, difficult to put together and difficult to please everyone. I'm not sure I would have called it the "Top 40 Bands in America Today" though - more like the acts bloggers like the most.)

Of course, there are a fair amount of American bands that I like that weren't listed (Interpol, The Rapture, Madison Strays) so I wouldn't go as far as saying I dislike American music completely.

So after reading the "Top 40 Bands in America" list, I thought, I need to see a Top Bands in the UK list, since my musical allegience lies across the pond. And Take Your Medicine came through for me. He compiled a list of 47 after consulting with UK blogs. Now here's something I can get into.

The "UK-centric Bloggers and Podcasters: Top 40 Artist's of 2005":

1. Girls Aloud
The Go! Team
Bloc Party
Test Icicles
Patrick Wolf
Art Brut
Basement Jaxx
10. Ra
chel Stevens
Boards of Canada
Super Furry Animals
Kaiser Chiefs
Arctic Monkeys:
¡Forward, Russia!
Mystery Jets
18. Muse
Tom Vek
Maximo Park
Jeremy Warmsley
The Futureheads
Franz Ferdinand
The Priscillas
Mojave 3
Twisted Charm
The Streets
The Bridge Gang
Emmy The Great
The Boy Least Likely To
The Pipettes
Thirteen senses
Paul Weller
37. Mu
The Cribs
Uncle John & Whitelock
Larrikin Love
44. Belle & Sebastian
46. The Emperor Machine / Chicken Lips

That's more like it. I like many more of these than the bands on the American list. Luckily, a lot of these acts come to New York, thus allowing me to quench my thirst. I think I would have added Editors, Hard-Fi, The Departure, and Stuart Price to this list.

Oh, and Canada got involved too.

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

A Bit Saucy

So you're showing off your new apartment. She's impressed with the decor, the bookshelves, the candles. You're looking for that cool, sorta romantic chill out music...hmmm what will she like? Sarah McLaughlin, nah, too H&M soundtrack. Beth Orton? Nah, too folksy. Beth Gibbons? A little bit of a downer. And since you're a little indie rock, you go with Nest. Nest? you think. Absolutely. Sensuous vocals, check. Melodic guitar and keys, check. Tight rhythm, check. This will work.

Where can you hear Nest you say? Try their snazzy website or their myspace page.

Monday, November 21, 2005

New Moving Units

Moving Units have put two new demos on their myspace page. Both are typical Moving Units tracks - with the rhythmic bass and hi-hat focused drums - and are really good. "Wrong Again" is a guitar-led track that has a flavor of The Strokes in it and sounds like a 60's song that I can't remember the name of. "Dark Walls" has a 1987 The Cure-esque swirling keyboard running through it. While the lyrics are good, the vocals are a little weak - hopefully when these tracks lose their demo status for the album the vocals will be stronger. The band has played/dj'ed a couple of LA area shows recently but it doesn't look like they have a tour in the making.

Thursday, November 17, 2005

Hey Scenesters

The Cribs are playing the Fixed party at the Tribeca Grand on Nov. 26. It's free with RSVP - GETRAD@IGETRVNG.COM The Tribeca Grand shows are always very crowded, so get there early. They were pretty good when I saw them play after Hard-Fi at the Mercury Lounge (where they will be playing again on Nov. 28). And I love "Hey Scenesters." Check them out if you're into that Brit indie guitar rock thing.

Also, Supergrass is being presented by the Bowery at Webster Hall on Februrary 9. They recently played an "initmate" show at the Bowery and I heard it was really good. Back in the day I would have jumped on Supergrass tickets, but not so much now.

And Radio 4 is playing the Knitting Factory on New Year's Eve. Only $20 for the opportunity not to be in Times Square.

Monday, November 14, 2005


The bass supergroup Freebass is finally going to happen. Peter Hook told XFM that he, Mani, and Andy Rourke are putting together a band featuring each of them on bass. "All of the songs - and they are songs at the moment minus vocals - they all have three basses. Mani does the low part, Andy Rourke in the middle and I do the high bit … it works out quite well.” Hook said that they are still in search of a vocalist, but because of the "pedigree" of each bassist's former vocalists, they're having a hard time finding someone new and fresh. I hope the singer they find is better than David Potts from Monaco, who was really just a Bernard Sumner clone.

Thursday, November 10, 2005

Unsavory! Friday at Route 85a

[Kinda crazy night - guys from Manchester requesting Oasis and the Roses, Matt GoStation in the house, knowledgeable music girl requesting the Jacques Lu Cont mix of Mr. Brightside. See the setlist here.]

I'm DJ'ing at Route 85a this Friday night. 85 Ave. A between 5th and 6th Streets. It will be the standard fare - Brit/indie/dancerock/electro.

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Pretty standard actually

In standard form, Noel Gallagher calls out some of the "hot" indie bands while speaking with Australia's Triple J. As reported by the NME, Gallagher calls out Franz Ferdinand, the Kaiser Chiefs, and Bloc Party by stating "Let's call it what it is - it's indie shit, is what it is. None of them are trying to make it big. They're all trying to make it small or medium - that's it." He did say he liked Franz and Kaiser, but had no positive thoughts on Bloc Party, who are "just appalling." I guess Noel is more concerned about bands trying to be the "best in the world" as opposed to just producing good music.

For something completely different, Triple J played their list of greatest B-Sides of All Time back in 2002. "Dear God" by XTC was #1. Here's the full list. Oasis' "Acquiesce" was #14.

Saturday, November 05, 2005

Turn the Radio On


Client may be the sexiest group alive. They brought their naughty electro sound to The Marquee (Leicester Sq., London) last Friday night. Client A and Client B were flanked by the stunning 6 foot tall bassist, Client E, making her debut appearance with the group. And of course Sara and Kate are gorgeous, and their act really plays this up. But nevermind, let's talk about the music. Often electro acts have a hard time reproducing their sound live, but Client did an excellent job. Loud and clear. Highlights were "Come On" and "Radio" (with half the crowd singing the harmony call back "turn the radio on"). Unfortunately, Carl Barat couldn't be there, but "Pornography" was still splendid.


And for those that care, they throw an all-electro club night at the Notting Hill Arts Club called Being Boiled.


Sing-Sing opened and played an acoustic set, adding a cello to the mix. Although the music wasn't as loud as it could have been, by playing acoustically Lisa's vocals really shined. "I'll Be" sounded especially good.

These New Puritans

So the sound du jour for the past two years or so has been the post-punk throwback sound. People may be sick of it, but not I. Sure, every band throws around Joy Division and Gang of Four as influences, and why not? These were great bands that many of us listen to. But I always approach bands that namecheck these greats with trepidation.

Yet, I was pleasantly surprised when I saw These New Puritans last Thursday night at The Dublin Castle in Camden. They combine the post-punk sound with synths in brilliant fashion. Originally a three-piece, they've recently added synth player for the live shows. And yes, I could hear the Joy Division, GoF, and a little bit of The Fall. What it all added up to was some nice, danceable rock. Right click The Chamber.

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

The Joy of Sing-Sing

To psyche up for their show this Friday at Club AC at the Marquee, I've been listening to a lot of Sing-Sing. Featuring Emma Anderson from Lush, Sing-Sing produces a great indie rock sound over sunny harmonies and a little electro thrown in. Their debut album, The Joy of Sing-Sing, is very underrated and actually is quite strong all the way through. Pitchfork even gave it a decent review. Their recent album Sing-Sing and I is literally fan supported, as fans donated cash to keep the band afloat in order to put the album and their previous EP, Madame Sing Sing, together. You can hear some of its songs at their myspace page, and while you're there, download "Lover."