Saturday, February 26, 2005

Rumor Mill: Velvet Revolver, The F-Ups, More

Hello all. I just wanted to quickly post about a few new music quips I've heard about in the past few days. On VH1 Classic, while watching the old man's satellite television set, it was said on Classic Current that Velvet Revolver is in the studio and a new album should be released by 2005's end. Score! Contraband was certainly one of my favorite discs of all year, and a new album would be fran-fricken-tastic!

And as I was listening to my XM radio I heard an awesome cover of Mott the Hoople's 'All the Young Dudes' by a band called the F-Ups (the song was originally penned by David Bowie, FYI). I don't normally tout covers, especially by new bands, but this song rocked me to the core.

I would also like to point your attention to one of the coolest podcasts ever, The Rock and Roll Geek Show. The latest show contains music from Dee Dee Ramone and American Heartbreak. Check the show out when you get the chance.

Well, that's it for the current Rumor Mill. Have a great weekend!

New Order Pledges North American Shows

"New Order bassist Peter Hook says the pioneering rock act plans to play 'as many shows as we can' in North America this year, in lieu of the limited appearances the band made here in support of its 2001 album, 'Get Ready.' "

Thursday, February 24, 2005

T. Rex 'Boogies' Again on DVD, CD

Some classic rock news: Robert Bolan, son of the late Marc Bolan, has okayed the release of 'Born to Boogie' on DVD. The film was directed by Ringo Starr during its original filming in 1972. So, bang a gong, get it on, and check out this DVD when it comes out in May.

Wednesday, February 23, 2005

Ted's Song of the Week - 2/23/05

A Fond Farewell
Elliott Smith
From a Basement on the Hill

This song evokes the tenderness and soul that is found lacking in most of today's music. Elliott Smith sugarcoated a path for his listeners to walk through a world of pain and misery. Aided with his acoustic guitar, Smith has delivered a song that could be perceived as a suicide note. Rest in peace, Elliott.

The litebrite's now black and white
Cause you took apart a picture that wasn't right
Pitch burning on a shining sheet
The only maker that you'd want to meet
The dying man in a living room
Who's shadow paces the floor
Who'll take you out in the open door
This is not my life
It's just a fond farewell to a friend
It's not what I'm like
It's just a fond farewell to a friend
Who couldn't get things right
Fond farewell to a friend
He said really I just wanna dance
Good and evil matched perfect it's a great romance
I can deal with some psychic pain
If it'll slow down my higher brain
Veins full of disappearing ink
Vomiting in the kitchen sink
Disconnecting from the missing link
This is not my life
It's just a fond farewell to a friend
It's not what I'm like
It's just a fond farewell to a friend
Who couldn't get things right
Fond farewell to a friend
I see you're leaving me and taking up with the enemy
The cold comfort of the in between
A little less than a human being
A little less than a happy high
A little less than a suicide
The only things that you really tried
This is not my life
It's just a fond farewell to a friend
It's not what I'm like
It's just a fond farewell to a friend
Who couldn't get things right
Fond farewell to a friend
This is not my life
It's just a fond farewell to a friend

Tuesday, February 22, 2005

Foos Draft A Pair Of Jones' For New Album

For their upcoming double album, the Foo Fighters have enlisted the musical prowess of both Led Zeppelin's John Paul Jones and Norah Jones in the way of special appearances. The new record is a double disc, with one CD dedicated to more acoustic sounds and the other dedicated to a more upbeat, raucous vibe.

"We've recorded a lot of music for this record," guitarist Chris
Shiflett writes on the Foos'
message board. "It's over 40 songs or versions of songs. Of course, that'll get narrowed down to about half of that number for the final track list."

And although the Foo's will not release this two-headed monster until summer, fans of Dave Grohl can hear him drumming on Nine Inch Nails's new album, White Teeth, due out May 3.

Punk Trio Blink-182 on 'Indefinite Hiatus'

California pop-punk trio Blink-182, famed for its practical jokes and disdain for clothing, has gone on 'indefinite hiatus,' with no plans to work together again, its Geffen Records label said Tuesday.

Friday, February 18, 2005

Tori Amos Embarking on Solo Piano Tour

Tori Amos has announced an upcoming solo tour. Dates and locations can be found below.

April 3: Orlando, Fla. (Bob Carr Theatre)
April 4: Atlanta (Symphony Hall)
April 6: Washington, D.C. (Warner Theatre)
April 8: New York (Hammerstein Ballroom)
April 11: Philadelphia (Kimmel Center)
April 12: Boston (Orpheum Theatre)
April 14: Detroit (Detroit Opera House)
April 15: Chicago (Auditorium Theatre)
April 17: Grand Prairie, Texas (Nokia Theatre)
April 19: Denver (Paramount Theatre)
April 22: Seattle (Benaroya Hall)
April 24: San Francisco (Davies Symphony Hall)
April 25: Los Angeles (Royce Hall Auditorium)

Thursday, February 17, 2005

MSI Dishes About New Album

Finally, fans of New York City's own Mindless Self Indulgence have an answer to the long-awaited question "When will these guys release a new album?" You'll Rebel to Anything will hit shelves on April 12th, marking MSI's first full-length studio album since 2000's Frankenstein Girls Will Seem Strangely Sexy.

"There will be three different versions of the release; a 10 track explicit version with a video for 'You'll Rebel to Anything,' an 11 track clean version with a video for "Diabolical," and an 11 track extra heavy double vinyl version. The clean and vinyl versions have two entirely different bonus tracks and all three have their own individual artwork. "

The band have just announced the full track listings on their website. In addition to completely new material, the album will contain tracks previously only heard during the group's live performances. This includes the fan favorite "Bullshit," as well as their cover of Rush's "Tom Sawyer." Despite the recycling of some old material, MSI's new effort looks quite promising, and I would strongly recommend checking it out.

Pinback - Summer in Abaddon

score: 4 out of 5

Pinback's latest LP, Summer in Abaddon, begins with muted guitar and bass picking, and quickly jumps into a midtempo jam, courtesy of a snare and high-hat combination. This track by the West Coast-based postmodern indie pop/rock duo is titled 'Non-Photo Blue', and marks the emergence of the act's first full-length album since 2001's Blue Screen Life. Released in the fall of 2004 as the follow-up to a 2003 EP, Pinback's Summer in Abaddon is a smooth, reflective sort of album, which plays on the band's quiet side. Although Pinback actually consists of a changing lineup of musicians, it is the steady partnership of the multitalented Armistead Burwell Smith IV and Robert Crow that has consistently produced critically-acclaimed albums since the late 90's.
Pinback's math-rock sound could potentially be categoried if one mixed together Modest Mouse and Death Cab for Cutie. On this release, Pinback relies less on their previous electronic attributes, and focuses more often on crisp, delicate acoustic piano and guitar structures.
This delicacy becomes apparent early on, as the opening jam glides into the mellow sounds of 'Sender.' Instead of track one's syncopated vocals, 'Sender' is sung at a near-whisper over the group's signature acoustic guitar + bass-heavy rhythms formula. The whole album is presented as a moderately paced collection, however there is something sluggishly deep and atmospheric to the overall production. Music to ponder to if you will. Songs about lazy summer days. Shy and mysterious, the album's intricate, ethereal qualities emerge upon closer examination. The album achieves thoughtfulness, and doesn't focus on trying to be catchy...even though it definitely is in its own subtle way.
Whether it is the bouncy chorus of 'Fortress' , or the soft cooing "uh oh"s of 'This Red Book', Pinback delves into the mysterious subconscious with sophistication and charm. On 'The Yellow Ones', the tempo slows and pulsates, with space-age quirks floating in the background of a sturdy piano accompaniment. The elusive vocals swirl around in soft circles with lyrics such as "I feel my head. going down again. I feel my head. going down again."
Just as the listener has almost been soothed completely to sleep, the final track "AFK" comes along, building upon pounding drums and chantings to create one of the disc's heaviest songs. This summit is reached about halfway through the song, and the final couple of minutes drive off into the setting sun - leaving the final words trailing off into the distance:

"Miles and Miles of telephone poles.
Fallen and tossed around.
I can't talk to you anymore...and I miss you.
Not in a slint way...but I miss you..."

Wednesday, February 16, 2005

Ted's Song of the Week - 02/16/05

Met A Girl Like You Once
Zack Hexum
The Story So Far

For those fans of 311's Nick Hexum, i would definitely recommend checking out his equally talented brother. Zack Hexum's latest album "The Story So Far" showcases some great soft rock to sit back and relax to. The first single, Met A Girl Like You Once, is a great pick if you enjoy listening to Jeff Buckley and/or Elliot Smith. Check it out and have a latte.

I met a girl like you once, except for she had brown hair. and everyone loved her, i mean, everyone loved her. Soon as you learned her name, you became best friends, but they all wanted more, yeah, they all wanted more.
And when we danced our eyes they met, and everything seems different now, somehow different now, and when we talked we reached some depth, at least as much as we could between the bump and grind.
infatuation begins....cupid strikes again. And everyone loves you, i mean, everyone loves you, so that i learned your name, and you gave me your number. I can't wait to call you, but i'll wait to call you.

3 Doors Down Steers Straight to No. 1 on Pop Chart

With its latest CD, Seventeen Days, Three Doors Down have reached new success. The band's third CD debuted at number one on Billboard's album charts this latest week. The highest debut ever for the Mississippi group, the rock outfit has sold nearly 9 million albums worldwide since its debut recording was first released in 2000.

The Thrills - So Much For the City

4.5 out of 5 stars

"So tell me where it all went wrong," longs the Irish rock outfit the Thrills on the initial track of their debut release. Greeting the listener with old time piano tunes, 'Santa Cruz' is a fitting introductory track for an album that is so much about the American West. Sounding like a washed up crooner in the midst of a drunken stooper, lead singer Conor Deasy emotes the tenderest of sentiments in a love song themed around the California city. Ironically, this album by five friends from Dublin seems to harbor more admiration for the American west than the average Yankee does him/herself.

So Much For the City is an album that serves as embodiment of the American spirit. Rugged, free and libertine, the tunes on this record are carefree and whimsical, transporting the listener to great expanses within the musical soundscape. Neo-Cowboys of sorts, the Thrills emancipate the listener. They open up the heart, and connect one's soul to nature and the American West.

Like an old vigilante omen, "Just don't go back to Big Sur" is a lyric on 'Big Sur" that provides feelings of both caution and adventure to the listener. As the old sheriff warns the greenhorn in the spaghetti westerns of old, so too do the words of Deasy: "So much for the street lights They're never gonna guide you home. No they're never gonna guide you home.....Just don't go back to Big Sur." In other words, do what you want Son, but don't do this. It can only be answered whether wisdom triumphs over eagerness in this sense.

In proving that it's better to burn out than to fade away, 'Hollywood Kids' is an ode to those who live fast and hard. But whether or not the Thrills are endorsing such a lifestyle is unclear in this particular song. "Oh the death of the fast life, those Hollywood kids have to pay" are words that serve as reminder that perhaps the excess of California life has outgrown its original intent. It is hard to say.

Poppy hooks and catchy lyrics, So Much For the City is by far one of the most overlooked albums of 2004. Those with a deep appreciation of the beach sounds of yore will greatly appreciate this album. But this is not to say that this is a simple rip off of the Beach Boys. As much as Oasis seemed to emulate the Beatles, that band had much to bring to the pop rock scene. In much the same way, the Thrills seem poised to remind us all that music doesn't have to be hard or complex to be good. It can be simple and it can feel good too. In this day in age of mass terrorist threats and questionable wars, an album that provides a warm and fuzzy feeling to the listener is one that should not be undercut. Buy So Much For the City if you want to be proud again.

Thursday, February 10, 2005

Killers to Go On New Tour in April

Somebody told me that the Killers are going on tour in April. Beginning April 11, the band will treat fans to bits and pieces of new material, in addition to their current chart sweeping hits. Because the Killers have no real intention of heading into the studio any time soon, this tour will be one of the few chances for fans to hear fresh stuff.

Planned Tour Dates
4/11 - Phoenix, AZ @ Marquee Theater
4/12 - La Jolla, CA @ RIMAC Arena
4/13 - Long Beach, CA @ The Vault 350
4/16 - Los Angeles, CA @ The Wiltern
4/17 - Los Angeles, CA @ The Wiltern
4/19 - San Francisco, CA @ Fillmore
4/21 - Portland, OR @ Roseland Theater
4/22 - Vancouver, BC @ Vogue Theatre
4/26 - Edmonton, AB @ Red's
4/27 - Calgary, AB @ MacEwan Hall
4/29 - Boise, ID @ The Big Easy Concert House
5/2 - Salt Lake City, UT @ Kingsbury Hall
5/3 - Denver, CO @ Paramount Theater

TV On The Radio, Interpol Lead Plug Awards

New York-based rock acts TV On The Radio and Interpol took top honors at last night’s (Feb. 9) Plug Awards in New York City. TV On The Radio won album of the year for its Touch & Go release "Desperate Youth, Bloodthirsty Babes," while Interpol was named artist of the year.

Wednesday, February 09, 2005

Ted's Song of the Week

Neighborhood #1 (Tunnels)
The Arcade Fire

Clocking in at just under five minutes, Neighborhood #1 (Tunnels) sets the tone for an album that can only be described as a melancholy masterpiece. The song opens like the dawn of a new day with soft piano trills, the faraway accompaniment of guitar, and the steady beat of a bass drum. Regine Chassagne’s vocals serve as the narrator to a tale of nostalgia and longing as the song progresses to an ending that can only be described as a vibrant dusk. For fans of Interpol and Franz Ferdinand, this is a must hear!!


...and if the snow buries my, my neighborhood. and if my parents are crying then I'll dig a tunnel from my window to yours, yeah a tunnel from my window to yours. you climb out the chimney and meet me in the middle, the middle of the town. and since there's no one else around, we let our hair grow long, and forget all we used to know - then our skin gets thicker from living out in the snow. you change all the lead sleepin' in my head, as the day grows dim I hear you sing a golden hymn then we tried to name our babies but we forgot all the names that - the names we used to know. but sometimes, we remember our bedrooms, and our parents' bedrooms, and the bedrooms of our friends. then we think of our parents, well what ever happened to them?! you change all the lead sleepin' in my head to gold, as the day grows dim, I hear you sing a golden hymn, the song I've been trying to say. purify the colors, purify my mind. purify the colors, purify my mind, and spread the ashes of the colors over this heart of mine!

Monday, February 07, 2005

Scissor Sisters Cross Atlantic for Attempt at Mass Success

In a strategy previously employed by Jimi Hendrix and Blondie, US band Scissor Sisters have been reaching out to their UK fans in an attempt to achieve super stardom. The band has sold 150,000 in the US while selling 1.6 million records in Britain.

"Puritans founded America while the pagans stayed in England," co-singer Ana Matronic told music magazine Blender. "No wonder we're popular over there!"

Perhaps red staters in the middle part of the country find Jake Shears' pink feather boa a hard pill to swallow? In any event, the Scissor Sisters rock the casbah (at least in this author's mind), and their album should be considered one of the best in pop for 2004.

Friday, February 04, 2005

Founder of Libertines Charged

Libertines co-founder Pete Doherty has been arrested after a disturbance at a London hotel. Doherty is known throughout England for his strong affinity for crack cocaine and his recent hook up with supermodel Kate Moss, in addition to Libertines fame.

Thursday, February 03, 2005

New Weezer Album Due in May

The first single, entitled "Beverly Hills," will hit US radio stations in March. The Rick Rubin produced album's title is still to-be-determined.

Tuesday, February 01, 2005

Coachella Gains Clout

The paramount indie rock festival, Coachella has picked up acts Coldplay, Nine Inch Nails, Weezer, Bright Eyes and Wilco. Bauhaus and Cocteau Twins will revive the 80s on the first night's bill by reuniting on Coachella's stage, soon followed by modern day acts such as Keane, Rilo Kiley, Ambulance LTD, Razorlight, Snow Patrol and the Chemical Brothers.

Alice in Chains Survivors Reunite for Tsunami Show

This is a rather biased music update, considering that AIC is one of Yours Truly's favorite bands of all time. All inclinations aside, however, Alice in Chains, minus deceased lead singer Layne Staley, will perform for the first time since 1996 in benefit of tsunami victims. If only I could clear my schedule to buy tickets and go see the show. An impromptu Seattle trip may be in order.