Depending on which side of the St Lawrence River you live, Ted Leo and The Pharmacists will be hitting up the Northeast or Southeast section of your country this June. It won’t be hockey season so hopefully we all can get along?!?!
And just a reminder for all of you in Austin, Ted swings by End of an Ear today for a solo in-store performance and then meets up with The Pharmacists at Emo’s (outside stage) later tonight for a proper show with Screaming Females and Sally Crewe & The Sudden Moves supporting (tickets purchased for The Parish will be honored)
Fri, 6/18 – Milford CT – Daniel Street Club
Sat, 6/19 – Portland ME – SPACE
Sun, 6/20 – Burlington VT – Higher Ground
Mon, 6/21 – Quebec City QC – Le Cercle
Tue, 6/22 – Montreal QC – Il Motore
Thu, 6/24 – Ottawa ON – Zaphod Beeblebrox
Sat, 6/26 – Toronto ON – Lee’s Palace
Sun, 6/27 – Buffalo NY – Mohawk Place
Sun, 7/11 – Louisville KY – Forecastle Festival Buy Tickets
Greetings from the Big White Van (whom the rental company named ‘Beth’),
So we’re officially halfway into the instore tour. 5 down, 5 to go. SoCal is in the bag and we’ve made our way north where it feels like it’s friggin October. Nobody told us it was going to be 55 degrees in August. We’re cold. A shopping day is very much in order. Anything with sleeves is tops on the menu. We’ve switched from three Mexican meals a day to three Thai meals a day. Sonic Youth, Faust, Adam Franklin, Eric’s Trip and Naked Raygun have dominated the stereo. We haven’t played the Bass Fishing video game the the rental company gave to us. A fuse blew on Jay’s amp. Twice. We got free t shirts. We got lost. The Big White Van’s battery died. And that millionaire guy killed his model girlfriend.
Are you sorry you missed one or more of the free, all-ages shows Jay’s been destroying? Well you should be. Cause they’ve been awesome. Amoeba Hollywood, Fingerprints, M-Theory, Streetlight and Amoeba SF were all packed to the gills with fans who certainly walked away satisfied. And Amoeba Berkeley, Jackpot, Easy St., Sonic Boom and Zulu should prove no different.
So if you see the Big White Van flowing through your town, be sure to follow it to the next stop for some ear-bending rock.
Tonight is our last night of our 5 date, west-coast run with Damien Jurado – it has been really, really great. Damien and Eric and Jenna are fantastic musicians and people and its been an honor to share a stage with them all week.
That’s it, I guess. I meant to take more pictures and do a record store blog but there wasn’t enough time. West coast drives between cities are too long.
Playing in the van: The Shins – Oh, Inverted World, Spiritualized – Songs in A&E, Jay Reatard – Singles 06/07, Lil Wayne – Tha Carter III, Damien Jurado – Caught In The Trees, Magnetic Fields – 69 Love Songs Vol. One
This ’70s group from the African country of Benin (or in its earlier incarnation Dahomey) has been kicking my ass lately. Poly-Rythmo recorded every imaginable type of African popular music – rhumba, funk, calypso, blues, Beninois folklore – but manage to imprint their elegantly loping, loose style onto every one. They released over 50 LPs and 100 7″es, mostly on the Albarika Store label, before guitarist Papillon died in the early ’80s.
T.P. stands for “Tout Puissant,” a moniker used by other African groups such as Franco’s OK Jazz.
Thanks to Analog Africa for posting this video from a videocassette. If this piques your interest, search out the Kings Of Benin compilation on the excellent Soundway label.
Not every day do you get offered the opportunity to head to the North Pole, but last week I did just that. I’m not one for holiday-blogging but I figured this might rival Patrick’s culinary exploits.
Last week I was lucky enough to head to the most northerly inhabited place on the planet – Longyearbyen in Svalbard, North of Norway. This tiny ‘town’ inhabits only 2000 people, with probably more polar bears and reindeer than there are humans. It took no less than three flights to get there, landing in between mountains on an incredibly small runway.
The reason I was there is somewhat ridiculous, but it involved a competition run by a tortilla crisp company. Your every day polar-sponsoring company. My friend won the competition and as part of the prize, he walked into the Guinness Book of Records as the First Advert in Space. You’d probably think that they’d send something slightly more meaningful into space in an attempt to reach out to possible life forms, but no, advertising crisps to the largest audience possible was what went first.
So we headed to a space station on top of a mountain and sent the message of Chilli Heatwave and Tangy Cheese to Ursa Major.
Truly the most beautiful place i’ve ever been. Rook got an airing at about 3am as we tried to cope with the 24hr sunlight streaming through the window. If you ever get the opportunity to head to the arctic circle courtesy of a tasty snack, I wholeheartedly endorse it.
Not actually a photograph of Chris Lombardi's personal rumpus room. However, now that the idea's been successfully planted in the mind of 304 Hudson's most devoted Phil Lynott fan, check back in a few months.
As killer as last Saturday night's Bowery Ballroom Ponys / Jay Reatard show was, it is pretty hard to compete with a bowling alley where the bands play right in the middle of the lanes. With that in mind I had no problem getting in the van for the trip to senic Asbury Park New Jersey. I picked up Paul Sommerstein, ESQ and we raced, Corzine style, down the Garden State Parkway to the up and coming neighborhood of Asbury Park. Once there we didn't waste too much time getting down to business on the lanes.
The first game was just me and Jered and we both we're having trouble getting into the zone. Jered has a great style: launching the ball into the air at first with lots of spin on it producing a killer hook, but he just couldn't get it down and many a ball ended up in the gutter in the first game. If he had it down I'd of been done for, but my basic style prevailed. The second game brought Paul and Meslissa into the action and upped the stakes when Paul produced two awesome (and huge) home made buttons. Aerosmith and Cheap Trick, winner gets to choose their pin. Jered clearly had me beat until the 10th frame when I channelled my love of Aerosmith into two consecutive strikes. Woo-hoo!
In our defense the Asbury Lanes, although totally cool, isn't really conducive to competitive bowling, but it sure was a good time. And speaking of a good time, althogh these remaining Ponys / Jay Reatard shows are not happening in bowling alleys you should by all means try to attend.
23 Jul 2007 Washington DC, Black Cat 24 Jul 2007 Columbus, OH Skully's 25 Jul 2007 Newport, Kentucky, Southgate House
Love of Diagrams (above) opened the first date of their opening stint with Ted Leo and the Pharmacists last night in Philadelphia at TLA, and this correspondent reports that it was an amazing show. Totally packed house, great opening set by Love or Perish (which I just realized is also the title of a poem by W.H. Auden, thanks google!), cold Yuenglings and good times and great music all around as Matador's favorite Aussies got some Illadelphians dancing up front. If you're, y'know, a sentient being residing in the lower 48, please do yourself a favor and go see them on this tour. Dates are here: Matador tour page. Tonight's show in D.C. sold out weeks ago, though, but they're playing pretty much everywhere else, so go!
In an event that edged on the surreal but certainly was a hugely successful piece of grand theatre Cat Power and Dirty Delta Blues rocked the highest echelons of the fashion world on Tuesday providing the music for Chanel's haute coutre cat walk show. Housed in the magnificant and recently restored Grand Palais in Paris the performance took place in a specially constructed arena with the stage high above the models entrance. Proceedings kicked off with Judah, Greg, Eric, Jim and Chan swaggering into a version of "Naked If I Want To". Six men rolled out a huge grey and white carpet centered with a giant Chanel logo. The models strutted their stuff wearing what to these unschooled eyes looked like opulent and sophisticated yet very pleasing creations. The DDB kicked into a muscular version of "Could We" proving what they bring to the mix (though it doesn't detract from the the album or the Memphis Rhythm Band versions) creates their own sinuous take on the song. As "Satisfaction" continued the momentum did I notice a flicker of amusement across the concentrated face of Marianne Faithfull watching the models intently from row two? Certainly the woman next to Sean Lennon started taking photos of Cat Power and not the models. The band seamlessly stepped into a gorgeous version of "Tracks of My Tears" which built to a crescendo with Chan singing "you can tell by the look on my face" as the final model commanded the floor in a stunning white coat and gown. The curtains opened and Karl Lagerfeld sat there amongst his team as if they too were an audience watching the show.
So I missed clocking Sigourney Weaver, Madame Chirac, Catherine Deneuve, the French Minister of Culture oh and Kate Moss but we did see Sofia Coppola and get to take same great photos of Chan with Marianne Faithfull and Karl Lagerfeld.