Thursday, May 31, 2007

Mic Test #27: The Dynamites...

The Dynamites:
Funk/Soul
*Note: The music featured in the Mic Test is typically new to me, too. Just throwing out some info. about bands that seem to be offering something exciting. Enjoy.

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Dyin' For Some Ryan...

Ryan Adams has scheduled some new North American tour dates, including one in Detroit at the Gem Theater. A lucky break for the midwest, so small and intimate.



6/18 Minneapolis, MN @ Cedar Cultural Center
6/19 Chicago, IL @ The Black Orchid
6/20 Detroit, MI @ Gem Theater
6/22 Toronto, Ontario @ Enwave Theater
6/24 Burlington, VT @ Higher Ground
6/28 Philadelphia, PA @ The Fillmore at the TLA
6/29 Boston, MA @ Somerville Theater
7/31 Salt Lake City, UT @ Red Butte Garden Amphitheatre
8/03 Morrison, CO @ Red Rocks Amphitheatre
9/01 Turin, NY @ moe.down

To Protect & Serve Rock 'n Roll...


Sure, there have been so many beloved "Police Bands" through the years...you remember the Clifton Police Band circa 1927, right? It's hard to pick a favorite...but few get the planet buzzin' like Sting, Stewart and Andy...and they are back and apparently the force is with them. The Police kicked off their long awaited reunion tour (their first in 23 years) in Vancouver, Canada on Sunday May 27th with a special Fan Club Member Only Show. The show was two hours long and featured all of the suspected hits...As you can imagine, the videos (I'm sure there will be many) are starting to find their way on to the World Wide Web. This clip was one of the better videos I found, so far.

King of Pain, Vancouver, 5/27/2007


And here is a clip from 1978 (to compare hair loss)...


Fans will also be pleased to hear that the band has agreed to do an MTV/VH1 "Unplugged" Show in Miami later in the year. Such a major catalog of songs, it'll be hard to choose which ones people want to hear most.

Monday, May 28, 2007

U2 Cannes Do It Better...














What a career it has been for U2...from Red Rocks to the "Red Carpet". U2 made quite a splash at the Cannes Film Fstival as they played a few songs on the Red Carpet to premiere their latest project, U2 3D. During their recent Vertigo World Tour, they filmed the concert experience (in South America) using 3D technology. If you couldn't see them live, maybe this can closely capture the actual excitement of a live show. Apparently, the band went to great lengths to ensure this 3D experience isn't corny. Fans will have to wait until the Fall of 2007, but I am already picking out my 3D glasses...(bug-eyed like Bono's signature specs, no less). This may see a limited release, as theatres will reportedly have to be 3D capable digital theatres.

Friday, May 25, 2007

Classic Clips: Radiohead...

Mic Test #26: Georgie James...

Georgie James:
Rock/Classic Rock/Indie
*Note: The music featured in the Mic Test is typically new to me, too. Just throwing out some info. about bands that seem to be offering something exciting. Enjoy.

How Does It Feel to be Jesse Harris...


NYC songwriter, Jesse Harris has announced new tour dates and the release of his solo album, Feel, which will be released July 10th on Velour. Jesse has loaned his songwriting talents to many other musicians, including an upcoming soundtrack for The Hottest State...he wrote all the songs, which were performed by other great bands. This time, he has taken a little something for himself...a true talent. Head over to his website to check out tour dates...more are expected to be announced as they are confirmed.

Here are a couple of new songs. This is some good stuff.
Feel
I Don't Mind

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Crouching Tiger, Ryan Adams...

Ryan Adams fans benefit from his tendency to release material early and often. His latest effort, Easy Tiger, is no exception. Didn't he just release eight albums in the last 2 years (or something like that)? Either way, his work is always highly anticipated. This one drops on June 26th...let the buzz begin.

Here are a couple of new tracks (MP3s), have a listen:
Two
Everybody Knows

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Flight of the Conchords Cleared for Takeoff...

If you think you need more comedy with your music...or if you need more music with your comedy, well then maybe you should take note of Flight of the Conchords, New Zealand's newest import to the states. Good comedy is like good music...you know it when you see it. And by all accounts, this funky, folkish duo has it. They have described themselves as "New Zealand's 4th most popular guitar-based digi-bongo acapella-rap-funk-comedy folk duo"...enough said. Usually equipped with guitars, their material is hilariously dry and innovative. Americans will surely begin hearing more about them, as their new HBO Show premieres on June 17th. You can view the entire first episode on their HBO Page. If you get hooked, there are plenty of great clips on YouTube and this fansite is a great way to stay up on their rise to stardom.

Let The Black Keys Pick Up The Tab...


Who says there is no such thing as a free lunch? The Black Keys are offering up four live tracks at no cost to fans. Just head over to their Myspace Page and hit download on the four songs posted there. It doesn't get much better...unless of course you want to use your allowance to go see them live. They have just announced some tour dates, including a stop in Detroit at The Majestic Theater on Tuesday, June 26th. Here comes the fuzz.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

'Lectrify My Soul...

Do not be fooled by the lyrics. Life is not all doom and gloom with Conor Oberst & Bright Eyes. This 10 piece came to Royal Oak, Michigan to deliver a memorable Rock 'n Roll Revival. But the table was set before they even hit the stage. Gillian Welch and David Rawlings created the mood nicely with their soulful "Yawl-ternative" folk stylings. This duo harmonizes as well as any group I have ever seen...the music world is blessed that these two have found each other. Fighting a talkative crowd, their sparse arrangements could have easily been knocked down. But they came prepared with some of their more lively songs, like I Want To Sing That Rock 'n Roll, My First Lover, Elvis Presley Blues, Caleb Meyer, and To Be Young (a Rawling's original made popular by Ryan Adams). David Rawling's flawless and energetic guitar always impresses as he bears down on his instrument. This man goes into some type of electrified trance as he convulses to find the groove on every single fret he can reach. The perfect accompaniment to Gillian's voice. Amazing to see live.

Then the crowd was treated to Conor & his band, taking to the stage like a gang of Rock 'n Roll angels all dressed in white. Cellos, violin, flute, sax, trumpet, clarinet joined in with a guitars, bass, drums and keyboard to produce a full course meal. This music was powerful and loud and full of soul. Visually, the screen behind the band was filled with projected images (water, food coloring, glass marbles, Etch-a-Sketch doodles) created on the spot by a performance artist named Joey (I think). At times, this imagery really helped you feel the emotion of the music as it was pulsated to the beat.

By the end of the night, 16 musicians (Oakley Hall, Gillian Welch, David Rawlings, & Conor & his band) had found their way to the stage to stir up a frenzied version of Road to Joy, which carried all the destructive force of a hurricane. The perfect storm!

Gillian Welch & David Rawlings - Caleb Meyer

Bright Eyes - Four Winds

If you can't get enough:
Bright Eyes Video - First Day of My Life
Bright Eyes Video - Road To Joy on Late, Late Show
Bright Eyes Video - AOL Sessions
Bright Eyes Video - Live on KCRW
Gillian & David with Old Crow Medicine Show Video - The Weight

Monday, May 21, 2007

Nothing Lost in Translation...

The wait for this video to pop up on YouTube is over...it's finally here. M. Ward was recently on Conan O'Brien with Neko Case and Jim James (My Morning Jacket) helping out on Chinese Translation.

Sunday, May 20, 2007

Classic Clips: Bill Withers...

Mic Test #25: Goldrush...

Goldrush:
Indie
*Note: The music featured in the Mic Test is typically new to me, too. Just throwing out some info. about bands that seem to be offering something exciting. Enjoy.

Friday, May 18, 2007

Instrumental to Your Development...

All this talk about what to expect from the new Beastie Boys album, The Mix Up...just have a listen (and a look). Don't wait for the lyrics, sucka...all instrumental y'all. And they updated their site this week...worth a visit.

Off The Grid


The Rat Cage

Thursday, May 17, 2007

A Bird in the Hand...



Andrew Bird fans should remember to tune into NPR for a webcast on Sunday, May 20th. The performance will take place from the 9:30 Club in Washington D.C. His latest effort, Armchair Apochrypha has had critical acclaim...and his live performances showcase his unique approach to the construction of a song. Violins, guitars, whistling, loops...a fresh mix to be sure.

Here are a few clips from his Bonnaroo 2006 Performance:
Skin, Is My


A Nervous Tic Motion of the Head to the Left

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Once Upon a Time...

Sundance Film Festival World Cinema Audience Award winner ONCE is the inspirational tale of two kindred spirits who find each other on the bustling streets of Dublin. One is a street musician (played by Glen Hansard of The Frames) who lacks the confidence to perform his own songs. The other is a young mother (Marketa Irglova) trying to find her way in a strange new town. As their lives intertwine, they discover each other's talents and push one another to realize what each had only dreamt about before. ONCE is their inspiring story.

The film opens May 18 at select cinemas, check the website for details.
The soundtrack is available today.

Here are a few tracks from that release...Take a listen:

Falling Slowly (MP3)
If You Want Me (MP3)
When Your Mind's Made Up (MP3)

Monday, May 14, 2007

Not Over-Crowded Yet...

Crowded House is back together and making plans to tour North America later this year (their first time back in more than 10 years). Their new effort is called Time On Earth, which is scheduled to be released on July 10th. For those in this area, we have lucked out with an Ann Arbor date. Pete Yorn will be their choice for an opening act.

Aug. 4 Northamptom @ Calvin Theater
Aug. 5 Boston @ Bank of American Pavilion
Aug. 6 Philadelphia @ Mann Center for Performing Arts
Aug. 8-9 New York @ Beacon Theatre
Aug. 11 Montreal @ St. Denis
Aug. 13 Toronto @ Massey Hall
Aug. 14 Ann Arbor @ Michigan Theater
Aug. 17 Milwaukee @ Pabst Theatre
Aug. 18 Chicago @ House of Blues
Aug. 20 Kansas City @ Uptown Theatre
Aug. 22 Denver @ Fillmore
Aug. 24 San Diego @ Humphrey's
Aug. 25 Santa Barbara @ Santa Barbara Bowl
Aug. 26 Oakland @ Paramount Theatre of the Arts
Aug. 28 Los Angeles @ Greek Theater
Aug. 29-30 Saratoga @ Mountain Winery
Sept. 1 Seattle @ Bumbershoot Festival
Sept. 2 Portland, Ore. @ Arlene Schnitzer Hall
Sept. 3 Vancouver @ Orpheum Theatre
Sept. 5 Calgary, Alberta @ Southern Alberta Jubilee Auditorium
Sept. 6 Edmonton, Alberta @ Northern Alberta Jubilee Auditorium
Sept. 8 Winnipeg, Manitoba @ Winnipeg Concert Hall
Sept. 9 Minneapolis @ Orpheum Theatre
Sept. 11 Nashville @ Ryman Auditorium
Sept. 12 Atlanta @ Tabernacle

Here is Neil Finn's explanation of the reforming of the band.

Saturday, May 12, 2007

Got them Middelburg Blues...

Put some Blues in your ear...
John Lee Hooker


James Blood Ulmer


(For a loyal reader from Zeeland)

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

Classic Clips: The Specials...

Monday, May 07, 2007

Jeff Tweedy Gets Stuck with a Pitchfork...

If you can't seem to get enough Wilco in your life, check out this interesting interview that Pitchfork just posted on their site.

The Roaring Days of Zeppelin...

I guess this video is proof that Led Zeppelin has been around a lot longer than anybody thought. (Joe...does classic rock include the 1920's?) Actually, this video was just odd enough to make the cut. Enjoy.

Sunday, May 06, 2007

Classic Clips: Curtis Mayfield...

Don't Mess With Texas (or at least Austin)...

You are going to want to get your bus ticket to head out west. Some "line-up love" has just been announced from the good people at Austin City Limits Festival. This fine festival takes place in the "live music capital of the world", Austin, Texas on September 14th - 16th,2007. As always, a little something for everyone.

Here is an initial (& partial) list of performers:

The White Stripes
Björk
Blonde Redhead
Kings Of Leon
The Decemberists
Peter Bjorn & John
Rodrigo Y Gabriela
Robert Earl Keen
Joss Stone
Andrew Bird
Rose Hill Drive
Gotan Project
Indigo Girls
Heartless Bastards
Augustana
Ben Kweller
Rev. Horton Heat
Asleep At The Wheel
The Little Ones
Charlie Musselwhite
The Jellydots
Sara Hickman

Friday, May 04, 2007

Webcasting Couch...

While on the topic of worthy webcasts...Wilco has hooked fans up with some new ear candy. Do yourself a favor and pull up a soft piece of furniture and listen to Wilco's recent webcast from Sydney Australia on April 21st, 2007. Occasionally they will post great performances in the "Roadcase" section of their website. This webcast will be of interest to fans who want to hear some of the new songs that will be featured on Sky Blue Sky. The madness that will be the promotion of that album will be kicking off soon. Look for Wilco to appear on Letterman on May 15th (same day as the U.S. release date).

Scheduled 2007 Tour dates:
(Low will be the supporting act for North American shows)
June 13 Davenport, IA (Adler Theatre)
June 14 Cincinnati (Aronoff center)
June 15 Indianapolis (Murat Theatre)
June 17 Manchester, TN (Bonnaroo)
June 19 Atlanta (Chastain Park)
June 20 Charlotte, N.C. (Ovens Auditorium)
June 21 Columbia, MD (Merriweather Post Pavilion)
June 22 Red Bank, N.J. (Count Basie Theatre)
June 24 Northampton, MA (the Pines)
June 25 New York (Hammerstein Ballroom)
June 26 Brooklyn (Warsaw)
June 28 Boston (Bank of America Pavilion)
June 29 Shelburne, VT (Shelburne Museum)
June 30 Toronto (Massey Hall)

Unbjelievable Bjeauty of Bjork...

If you can't bear the thought of not seeing Bjork while she is in the states, here is news of the next best thing. Her concert from the United Palace in NYC will be webcast on NPR's site tomorrow night (Saturday, May 5th). Click here for the link that will get your ears into the show. These shows are usually archived, so you should be able to listen whenever the mood strikes you. The reviews of her performance at Coachella have been really impressive. Videos of last weekend's show have been popping up on YouTube...here is a sample of the creativity that is uniquely her own.

Thursday, May 03, 2007

The Beauty of the Beasties...



Feeling all hyped up about word of this new Beastie Boys release on June 26th. Can you feel it? Try some.

Taking it to the Banksy...

Banksy is a an underground, yet prolific graffiti artist from the UK, whose works can be as unsettling and provocative as it is funny. Anarchy and comedy that is so original and subversive. It may not be musical, but it is so rock n' roll. I recently came across a short investigative report that sought to demystify the legend. Take a look...you might get hooked.



Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Mixin' It Up With the Beasties...


The Beastie Boys have announced that they have a new album ready to come out of the oven in June. The new effort is appropriately named The Mix Up, as it will be an all instrumental album...that's right, all instrumental!!! How 'bout that for mixing up your mind? Maybe not what you would expect from Brooklyn's finest. But, if you remember their last instrumental release, The In Sound From Way Out, it was fresh and funky and full of groove. Word is this album will feature a bit more rock.
Here is the track list:
1. B For My Name
2. 14th St. Break
3. Suco De Tangerina
4. The Gala Event
5. Electric Worm
6. Freaky Hijiki
7. Off The Grid
8. The Rat Cage
9. The Melee
10. Dramastically Different
11. The Cousin Of Death
12. The Kangaroo Rat

No doubt, The Beasties will be performing some new tracks at the Virgin Festival in Baltimore this August...but that may not be the only place you can catch them. A recent e-mail newsletter mentioned that more U.S. dates would be coming soon. We're ready...bring it on.