Battles will follow-up their brilliant 2007 debut Mirrored with a new album this year. Speaking with NME.com, guitarist Dave Konopka said making the album in the Times Squares neighbourhood of Manhattan has been an influence.
F**ked Up guitarist Ben Cook has cleared up rumours of a feud between them and Sonic Youth. Speaking to Spinner, Cook said the song they wrote – “Cranking to Sonic Youth” – is “more of an homage to their fans.”
Brooklyn music mashers Javelin have announced details about their proper debut album. The duo will release No Más on April 20th through David Byrne’s Luaka Bop label. In addition, next month Javelin will embark on a UK tour with Yeasayer.
Fresh off the heels of their Hot Rats side-project, Supergrass have revealed that members will swap instruments to help spruce up their new album. Calling it “different and chaotic,” frontman Gaz Coombes told NME.com they’ve been listening to a lot of krautrock, which sounds awesome.
Tags: animal collective, Battles, Ben Cook, f**ked up, Gaz Coombes, Javelin, Luaka Bop, NME.com, No Más, ODDSAC, Sonic Youth, Spinner, Supergrass, Yeasayer
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Animal Collective Fall Be Kind [Domino]
They really didn’t need to do this. After over-stimulating us way back in January with Merriweather Post Pavilion, an album that still reveals brand new elements and nuances almost a year later, Animal Collective cap off a career-making year with five more mind-bending gems.
Fall Be Kind is not a companion EP, but a stand-alone work that peels yet another layer from their infinite onion. Well, actually, opener “Graze,” was originally imagined for MPP, and I can see why. The soaring, echo-y haze keeps ascending until it trickles into a coda that’s as much some Celtic/polka concoction as it is a carbonated AC breakdown we’ve become accustom to.
“Bleed,” on the other hand, looks back to the more jam-filled formative years, where they were more about simplifying music by stretching out songs into extended refrains (though this one isn’t even four minutes). “On A Highway” too eschews MPP’s boisterous activity, spreading its wings and soaring off into a pensive, dubby drone.
Since its initial announcement though, Fall Be Kind had most people curious to hear what they did with the sample they lifted from the Grateful Dead’s “Unbroken Chain.” As the first act ever to receive clearance from the Dead, AC certainly put it to good use. The guitar part is looped and then absorbed into their intricate layers, blossoming into a bona fide pop song that acts as not just the centrepiece but also one of the most accessible things they’ve given us.
Ending on a more drawn out cut helmed by Noah Lennox (Panda Bear) is both surprising and not very. Again, it demonstrates how much Animal Collective like their songs to climb and then expand. While it takes nearly five minutes to arrive, the pinnacle arrives when the song erupts – for one brief, glorious minute – like a gutted piñata expelling a melange of dizzying harmonies.
Apologies for getting seasonal, but Fall Be Kind is like that extra special Christmas present your parents wait to give you after you’ve unwrapped everything in sight – somewhat unexpected, not exactly necessary considering the gift they already gave us this year, and the complete and utter cherry on top of a year that has seen them become the most influential and important band making music.
Who knows what they could possibly have in store for that next album, but let’s hope they’re making that promise to have it out next year as a New Year’s resolution…
- Cam Lindsay
In case you missed it (like I did), Neko Case took over as programmer for the Turner Classic Movies network last night. The alt-country crooner sat and chatted with Robert Osborne and then presented four films: Woody Allen’s Radio Days, Orson Welles’ The Third Man, Albert Lewin’s The Picture of Dorian Gray and Elia Kazan’s A Face in the Crowd. Apparently, this was an idea Neko had to promote her recent album, Middle Cyclone. I wonder what else she could get away with…
Spanish blog darlings Delorean will take their Balearic pop on the road this spring opening up for Miike Snow on a North American tour, which stops in Montreal on April 2, Toronto on April 3 and Vancouver on April 12. They’re also said to be working on their debut full-length.
Grandaddy were great, so we can only assume the new Xmas album by former frontman Jason Lytle is worth downloading. I mean, it’s free, but remember how rad Sophtware Slump was? You can grab it over at his official website.
15 years is a pretty long time to hold a grudge, so Massive Attack and Tricky have finally buried the hatchet. In an interview with BBC 6 Music, Daddy G said that it’s all water under the bridge and he and 3D are working on a collaboration with Tricky. Let’s hope they can recreate the magic of “Karmacoma.”
Finally, Stereogum has announced the winners of The 2009 Gummy Awards. Animal Collective (album), Grizzly Bear (video) and The xx (new act) were all victorious. Best of all though, the site asked tasteful celebs and musicians like Aziz Ansari (Parks and Recreation, Human Giant), Andy Samberg (SNL, Lonely Island), Gregg Gillis (Girl Talk), Patton Oswalt (Big Fan, Ratatouille) and Andrew W.K. for their picks.
Tags: 3D, animal collective, Daddy G, Delorean, Granddaddy, grizzly bear, Jason Lytle, Massive Attack, Miike Snow, Neko Case, Stereogum, The Gummys, the xx, Tricky, Turner Classic Movies
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Andrew W.K. has contributed to a re-imagining of The Simpsons’ famous theme tune. Andrew played piano and threw in some scatting over top of some production by hip-hop crew People Under The Stairs. Their version will air on January 14th, the final episode of the show’s 20th season.
Phoenix are the stars of three new videos featuring them playing around various spots in Paris. Shot by Vincent Moon (The National, R.E.M., All Tomorrow’s Parties), the clips show the band stripping down their flashy studio sound to a couple of acoustics, a rinky-dink Casio keyboard and Thomas Mars’ unwavering voice.
Animal Collective will premiere their movie with director Daniel Perez at the Sundance Film Festival in January. The official description of ODDSAC is “an earthy, psychedelic experimental narrative infused with the band, Animal Collective’s aural and musical sensibilities.” Basically what we’d want in such an endeavour.
Jason Pierce has said he’s “not interested” in ever reuniting his former band Spacemen 3. About his notorious old bandmate Pete “Sonic Boom” Kember, Mr. Spaceman said, “The split was so acrimonious and my view of him hasn’t changed.”
The other day we mentioned how Beyonce and Of Montreal are interested in working with each other. Well, it appears Kevin Barnes has already jumped at the opportunity and begun working on a song for Ms. Knowles. On Twitter, he posted that the song will be called “He’sMyPartyDrug” and it “sounds like The Time meets Four Tet.” Ooh!
Tags: andrew wk, animal collective, Beyonce, Daniel Perez, He'sMyPartyDrug, Jason Pierce, Kevin Barnes, ODDSAC, Of Montreal, People Under The Stairs, Pete “Sonic Boom” Kember, phoenix, Spacemen 3, Sundance Film Festival, The Simpsons, Twitter, Vincent Moon
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Madcap lo-fi whiz Ariel Pink and his Haunted Graffiti have signed to 4AD and will release a new album in 2010.
The first crop of talent confirmed for the 2010 installment of South By Southwest has been announced. Among the hundreds of acts on the lengthy list are Japandroids, Warpaint, Frightened Rabbit, We Are Wolves, Plants and Animals, Timber Timbre and We Are Scientists. Umm, we expect them to announce a lot more in the coming months.
Tickets have now gone on sale for the All Tomorrow’s Parties New York 2010 event. Taking place the weekend of September 3 – 5 at Kutsher’s Country Club in Monticello, performances include Iggy & The Stooges doing Raw Power, Sleep doing Holy Mountain, Mudhoney doing Superfuzz Bigmuff + Early Singles, and The Scientists doing Blood Red River.
Animal Collective have completed their long-awaited “visual album.” Panda Bear (aka Noah Lennox) said it should be out next year and that the band will also begin writing a new album.
NME has named its 100 Tracks of the Decade, selecting Beyonce’s “Crazy In Love” as the best song of the aughties. MGMT, The Strokes, M.I.A. and OutKast round out the top five.
Tags: 4AD, All Tomorrow's Parties, animal collective, Ariel Pink's Haunted Graffiti, Beyonce, Iggy & The Stooges, Mudhoney, NME, Panda Bear, Sleep, South By Southwest, sxsw, The Scientists, Tracks of the Decade
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Diplo has described M.I.A.’s new album as sounding “like Gucci Mane meets Animal Collective.” The producer is currently working on her new album with Switch, and says they’ve already finished four tracks.
If goths weren’t into Twilight before well that will soon change. MTV is reporting that Bauhaus frontman Peter Murphy will make a cameo in the third film, Eclipse. According to actor Billy Burke, who plays Kristen Stewart’s father, Murphy “plays a vampire in a flashback sequence.” We can only assume Bela Lugosi is rolling in his grave…
Cold Cave’s music is featured in a new ad for Radio Shack. Yes, you can now hear “Life Magazine” try and sell you electronic gadgets that you likely don’t need.
Asobi Seksu are looking to their fans to donate money to them for a UK tour. According to them, “Support bands on large tours like this make next to nothing.”
And the Pixies are offering fans a free download of special Doolittle live EP, which you can grab here.
Matador has announced the track listing for the forthcoming singles comp by Polaris Music Prize champs F**ked Up. Out January 26th, Couple Tracks will be a double album made up of “many, many hard-to-find uncollected 7-inch and 12-inch tracks.”
Along with Brody Jenner, Perez Hilton and Kelly Osbourne, Animal Collective have posed for the latest PETA campaign – Save the Seals. The indie faves are protesting the cruelty behind Canada’s annual seal slaughter.
Jay Reatard has found a new rhythm section after his bassist and drummer split on him earlier this month. He’s gone and grabbed members of the Cola Freaks to help him with his upcoming European and U.S. tours and those Pixies shows.
MGMT have revealed that their second album will be called Congratulations. The album is produced by Sonic Boom from Spacemen 3 and will feature Royal Trux’s Jennifer Herrema on backing vocals. Apparently it has “an overall air of electronic exuberance, quirky instrumental introspection and their trademark soul-searching crescendos of psychedelia.”
Xenomania, the production team behind Kylie Minogue, Annie, Sugababes, Pet Shop Boys, New Order and today’s Earworm, Mini Viva, among others, are holding open auditions. The “British hit factory” are looking for male and female singers & rappers as well as girl/boy groups between the ages of 15 and 25.
Following in the footsteps of their label Sub Pop’s new Nike kicks, no-fi princes No Age have been given their own pair of Emerica skate shoes. Seeing as the band are vegan, they’re also made entirely of organic and synthetic materials.
Animal Collective actually do have a brand spankin’ new EP coming out in December called Fall Be Kind. Speaking with Pitchfork, Avey Tare says it’s “autumn themed” and the “vibe is a little bit darker.”
Serge’s daughter Charlotte Gainsbourg has finished recording her new album with Beck. Titled IRM, the album will be released on January 26th and will feature Charlotte backed by Beck and his band.
First it was Pitchfork and now Uncut has released its very, very different list of the best albums from the 2000s. Speaking of which, check back here next week for a lengthy list of my favourite albums from the last decade… When in Rome!
And don’t miss Sonic Youth perform an acoustic version of EVOL’s “Star Power” this coming Monday (October 12) on… yes, Gossip Girl! Or wait until next Friday (October 16) to see it on MuchMusic at 7:30 pm ET.
More proof that the Pavement reunion is totally on: they’re confirmed as curators for All Tomorrow’s Parties in May 2010. Tickets go on sale this Friday, but unless you’re going to be in England over the weekend of May 14th-16th, well, this is all just a tease, isn’t it?
Pitchfork has tipped everyone off about a possible new record from Animal Collective. According to Amazon.com, something called Fall Be Kind will be released on December 8th and is now available to pre-order. WTF?
Legendary post-harDCore band Jawbox are reuniting and will make their first public appearance with a performance on Late Night With Jimmy Fallon. It’s an obvious choice, but here’s to hoping they play “Savory.”
Jay Reatard’s band has abandoned him and judging by his pissy rant on Twitter, he ain’t happy. He’s now inviting people to join with this encouraging invite: “So who wants to see just how terrible it is to play in my band.”
SPIN has chosen what it feels are the “Top 5 Up-and-Coming Montreal Bands.” Judging by the results, it looks as though the mag wasn’t able to find the next big thing at Pop Montreal.
What: Parisians that sculpt pop into a stylish, meticulous and intelligent product… that you can dance to!; Psychedelic powerhouse often recognized as the most influential band in the universe for pushing the boundaries of what pop music can be.
Sounds like: The choppy guitars of The Strokes, the seamless musicianship of Steely Dan and the synthesized nuances of Art of Noise – but French; Brian Eno’s sprawling mix of pop and ambient, The Flaming Lips’ bombastic take on psychedelia and pop, and well, the Animal Collective.
RIYL: Umm… Phoenix and Animal Collective.
Need to know: Phoenix’s Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix and Animal Collective’s Merriweather Post Pavilion are both real contenders for 2009’s best album of the year for many critics and fans alike. You can grab more remixes of Phoenix’s stuff over at their official journal, including one by Devendra Banhart, another by A Fight For Love & 25 Hours A Day and yourself! Also check out the very cool Friendly Fires’ remix of “Fences.” And if you’d like all of the remixes in one nice, tidy package, well, Phoenix will be releasing a 15-track companion to their album appropriately titled Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix (Remix Collection) digitally on October 13th.
Track: “Love Like A Sunset” is arguably the standout from Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix. The original is a two-part epic that stretches to nearly eight minutes, which winds down with Thomas Mars’ soft vocal ushering in a warm, humming coda. But AC along with “former” member Deakin have transformed it into a creation of their own. Soaked in layers of voice, reverb, delay, pedal effects, looping synths and scattered polyrhythms, the elements converge in the final minute to produce a dizzying, kaleidoscopic collage.
Buy: It’s free. You can download it here. Or wait two weeks until (Remix Collection) drops.
- Cam Lindsay