Sunday, August 26, 2018

Live Review: Interpol Close House of Vans

On Friday night, Interpol performed a very special record release show for their latest album, the very solid, Marauder.

The gig was the final concert ever inside Williamsburg, Brooklyn's House of Vans skate park. For the last 8 years, Vans has supplied a venue for locals to not only skate around in but also attend free concerts each and every summer since it opened.

For the final gig, the sneaker company signed local heroes Interpol to close out venue and what a way to say goodbye.

Leading up to the band's set, many inside the packed venue were sharing stories about how the House of Vans became a summertime staple for them to not only see bands, drink free beer, and skate around but it was a place of unity in the neighborhood and for those around New York City. The venue attracted characters from all walks of life and Friday everyone was on full display from the middle aged skater to the young hipster who just moved to the neighborhood to the student to the professional and even the elderly, as an elderly woman was seen spotted at the show. It was a bittersweet moment for all which led to Interpol's Paul Banks to express his gratitude as much as he could for be allowed to headline and curate the important event.

Hitting the stage just before 10 p.m., the dapper Manhattan band opened with "Number 10," a track from their brand new record but then dove into the hits like "All the Rage Back Home," "Evil," "Public Pervert," "NYC," as well as mixing in new songs like "The Rover," "NYSMAW," "Complications," which fit in just fine.

It was the kick-off of a small tour for the band but they looked relaxed and well rehearsed to make some of their new songs come alive for the first time all while holding the audiences attention.

Guitarist Daniel Kessler would dance around stage while singer Paul Banks would show off his unique and powerful voice to the delight of everyone in the room. Drummer Sam Fogarino is still holding his own as the backbone of the band they sound as tight as ever.

As Marauder is set to take them around the world to tour, the band will be back in New York in February where they headline Madison Square Garden.

Live Pix: Fantastic Negrito at SOB's

Just ahead of his Afropunk performance this weekend, Fantastic Negrito played a special New York City gig Thursday night at the legendary SOB's. 

We were on hand to capture the action, take a look! 

Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Tuelo Releases Live EP

Tuelo has been out of New York City since the fall of last year and bouncing around her native South Africa and across Europe writing and recording. 

She has now shared a raw Live EP as a free download. Stream it / Get it below:

Friday, June 15, 2018

Alt-J with Pusha T and Twin Shadow on 'Colbert'

Watch Alt-J with special guests Pusha T and Twin Shadow perform "In Cold Blood" On The Late Show with Stephen Colbert.

Monday, June 11, 2018

Underrated Classic: Jonathan Fire*Eater 'Wolf Songs for Lambs'

Last month, the music world was stunned by the sudden passing of musician Stewart Lupton, the enigmatic frontman of New York via D.C. indie pioneers Jonathan Fire*Eater. The 43-year-old help put New York rock and roll back on the map in the mid-to-late 90s when Jonathan Fire*Eater relocated to the Big Apple from the capital and caused one of the largest label bidding wars in history at the time. Jonathan Fire*Eater had a sound unlike many others at the time with jingle-jangle guitar hooks, thumping rhythms, and sinister and dark lyrics that were showcased via Lupton's unique voice. Dreamworks eventually won the band on their label after the bidding war and they released their critically acclaimed but commercially flopped Wolf Songs for Lambs in 1997. After they signed their lucrative deal with Dreamworks, the L.A. Times called the band "possibly the most hyped young group that nobody has ever heard of," in the era before social media that was a bold but accurate statement to make. The album would basically set the standard for New York City bands of the early millennium like Interpol, Yeah Yeah Yeahs, The Strokes, and Secret Machines. Wolf Songs for Lambs would be the template that those artists would use for their respective debuts and early styles. Wolf Songs for Lambs now sounds just as fresh as it did 21 years ago and the oral history of the record was displayed in Lizzy Goodman's brilliant 2017 book, Meet Me in the Bathroom. A year after the record was released, the band split and members Paul Maroon, Matt Barrick, and Walter Martin would later form the critically acclaimed indie band The Walkmen. While Jonathan Fire*Eater received their acclaim from critics and the NYC and DC audiences that flocked to see them and not from the masses, the influence they had is something no one can argue and their legacy is a testament to that.

Spiritualized Announce New Album

Spirtualized will release their first album in 6 years in September called And Nothing Hurt. 

"With a bit of trial and lot of error, I found ways of doing something that’s quite simple if you’ve got the resources. I spent two weeks listening to classical records and strumming the chord that I wanted on my guitar. When I found something to match what I wanted, I’d sample that bit and go for the next chord and try to match that. It took weeks, trying to put together and layer convincing string sounds. But, if I’m honest, all I wanted was for someone to come and play the part and bring their own thing to the record," frontman J. Pierce said in a press release.

Take a look at the cover, above, and the tracklisting, below:

1. A Perfect Miracle
2. I’m Your Man
3. Here It Comes (The Road) Let’s Go
4. Let’s Dance
5. On The Sunshine
6. Damaged
7. The Morning After
8. The Prize
9. Sail On Through

Thursday, May 31, 2018

Gorillaz Detail New Album

Gorillaz will release their new album, the follow-up to last year's Humanz, The Now Now, in June.

Listen to Our Essential Gorillaz Playlist on Spotify

Take a look at the cover, above, and the tracklisting, below, and watch the video for the new single, "Humility." 

  1. Humility - feat George Benson
  2. Tranz
  3. Hollywood - feat Snoop Dogg + Jamie Principle
  4. Kansas
  5. Sorcererz
  6. Idaho
  7. Lake Zurich
  8. Magic City
  9. Fire Flies
  10. One Percent
  11. Souk Eye

The Internet Detail New Album

The Internet will release their new album, Hive Mind, in July.

Take a look at the cover, above, and the tracklisting, below, and hear the new single, "Come Over."

01 Come Together
02 Roll (Burbank Funk)
03 Come Over
04 La Di Da
05 Stay the Night
06 Bravo
07 Mood
08 Next Time / Humble Pie
09 It Gets Better (With Time)
10 Look What U Started
11 Wanna Be
12 Beat Goes On
13 Hold On

Wednesday, May 30, 2018

U2 at Third Man Records

U2 were in Nashville this week and stopped by Jack White's Third Man Records where they recorded a couple tunes. Take a look.

Thursday, May 24, 2018

Orbital Detail New Album


Orbital will release their new album, Monsters Exist, in September. 

 “When you haven’t made an album in five years it just comes tumbling out,” says Paul Hartnoll in a press release. “Because of the global situation I was torn between writing a really aggressive Crass-type album that says ‘Fuck The Man!’ or going back to rave sensibilities. You know, let’s really rebel by stepping away and actually living that alternative lifestyle. You don’t need to spell out who the monsters are. We’re not pointing our fingers at Donald Trump or Kim Jong-un. It’s clear who the monsters are. I’ve never liked preaching to people. It’s much better to provoke a bit of thought.” 

Take a look at the cover, above, and the tracklisting, below:

1. Monsters Exist
2. Hoo Hoo Ha Ha
3. The Raid
4. P.H.U.K.
5. Tiny Foldable Cities
6. Buried Deep Within 
7. Vision OnE
8. The End Is Nigh
9. There Will Come A Time (Featuring Prof. Brian Cox)

The Kills on 'Colbert'

Watch The Kills perform "List of Demands (Reparations)" on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert.

Jim James on 'Colbert'

Watch My Morning Jacket frontman Jim James perform "Just a Fool" on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert.

Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Bjork on 'Jools Holland'

In her first TV performance in 8 years, Bjork pulled out all the stops and performed “Courtship” and “The Anchor Song” on Later... with Jools Holland.

Thursday, May 17, 2018

Florence & The Machine on 'Fallon'

Watch Florence and the Machine perform "Hunger" on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon.

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

Chvrches on 'Fallon'

Watch Chvrches perform "Miracle" on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon.

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Arctic Monkeys on 'Corden'

Watch Arctic Monkeys perform "She Looks Like Fun" on the Late Late Show with James Corden.

Monday, May 14, 2018

Fantastic Negrito Announces New Album

Fantastic Negrito will release his second album, Please Don't Be Dead, next month.

Read Our 2017 Interview with Fantastic Negrito

Take a look at the cover, above, and the tracklisting below, and hear the new singles, "The Duffler" and "Plastic Hamburgers."

1. Please Don't Be Dead
2. Bad Guy Necessity
3. A Letter To Fear
4. A Boy Named Andrew
5. Transgender Biscuits
6. The Suit That Won't Come Off
7. A Cold November Street
8. The Duffler
9. Dark Windows
10. Never Give Up
11. Bullshit Anthem

Friday, May 11, 2018

Interpol Share 'Turn on the Bright Lights' XV Documentary

Last year, Interpol shared performed their classic debut, Turn on the Bright Lights, in full for its 15th anniversary. Now, the band have shared a documentary about the record and what the concerts meant to them.

Foo Fighters on 'Ellen'

Watch Foo Fighters perform "The Line" on Ellen.

Arctic Monkeys on 'Fallon'

Watch Arctic Monkeys perform "Four Out of Five" on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon.

Thursday, May 10, 2018

Nine Inch Nails Announce New EP


Nine Inch Nails will release the third part of their EP series which began in 2016 with Not The Actual Events, then followed by 2017's Add Violence, and will release Bad Witch on June 22.  

Take a look at the cover, above, and the tracklisting, below:

01 Shit Mirror
02 Ahead of Ourselves
03 Play the Goddamned Part
04 God Break Down the Door
05 I’m Not From This World
06 Over and out

Wednesday, May 9, 2018

Ben Harper, Charlie Musselwhite Jam with Conan O'Brien

Watch Ben Harper & Charlie Musselwhite jam with Conan O'Brien for the song "Movin On" on Conan.

Sunday, May 6, 2018

Childish Gambino on 'SNL'

Watch Childish Gambino perform "Saturday" on SNL.

Jack White on 'Colbert'

Watch Jack White perform a skit on the Late Show called "Jingle More of the Way" with Stephen Colbert.

White also performed "Ice Station Zebra," from Boarding House Reach on the show.

Thursday, May 3, 2018

Florence and the Machine Announce New Album


Next month, Florence and the Machine, will release their fourth record, High as Hope, next month.

According to a press release, the album will feature Kamasi Washington, Sampha, Tobias Jesso Jr., Kelsey Lu, and Jamie xx.

Take a look at the cover, above, and the tracklisting, below, and watch the video for "Hunger."

01 June
02 Hunger
03 South London Forever
04 Big God
05 Sky Full of Song
06 Grace
07 Patricia
08 100 Years
09 The End of Love
10 No Choir

Tuesday, May 1, 2018

Rising Artist: Soccer Mommy

Nashville has become a modern music hotspot in the 21st century while it holds on to its country, bluegrass, and early rock and roll roots. One of the latest products to come from the music city is Sophie Allison aka Soccer Mommy. The singer / songwriter is poised to be an indie rock sensation thanks to her subtle ability to simply not give a damn about what you think, which shines through in her songs. She released her debut, Clean, in March to critical reviews. As her fanbase continues to sprout, the singer describes her music as "chill but kinda sad" and finds herself carving out a new sub category of music known as bedroom pop -- music you want to listen to when you are feeling low and alone. Soccer Mommy has gain comparisons to a modern Liz Phair, EMA, with a touch of Slowdive thrown in the mix. Here is a way to spend the warm weather by emoting to her.

Underrated Classic: Afghan Whigs 'Gentlemen'

Nearly 25 years ago, one of America's most underrated bands -- The Afghan Whigs, released their fourth and possibly best record with Gentlemen. The album, which was recorded in Cincinnati and Memphis between May and June 1993, arrived that fall and like most Whigs records, was unfairly lumped with the Seattle grunge bands and rock acts of L.A. as just a Midwest ripoff. However, the Whigs were always more than just a rock and roll band. The band combined funk, R&B, soul, as well as themes of sex, death, crime, made them not just a darker and more curious band than their contemporaries but far more creative and boundary pushing. Gentlemen is a testament to that. Produced by their frontman and leader Greg Dulli, the record has stood the test of time and goes far beyond what a 90's rock band would have released during the heyday of radio friendly days on the terrestrial platform. Gentlemen, which featured a cover of a boy contemplating his life at edge of a bed while a young girl lay in the bed was inspired by "Nan and Brian in Bed, New York City" by Nan Goldin. It is a cover that if it were out today, would have social media divided on if it is art or outrageous. After it was released, the album was a critical success with the Village Voice giving it an A-, NME giving it a 9/10, and Rolling Stone rated it 4.5 out of 5 stars. Propelled by the title track, "Debonair," and "What Jail is Like," peaked at 13 on Billboard's "Heatseekers" chart in the spring of 1994. In 2014, the band released Gentlemen at 21, a celebration of the record which featured a reissue and second disc of bonus material including B-sides, covers, and outtakes. The band split in 2001, and reunited for a one-off show in 2006, before reactivating in 2012 and releasing two brilliant albums -- 2013's Do to the Beast and last year's Album of the Year -- In Spades. 

Saturday, April 28, 2018

Live Review: Peter Hook & The Light at Brooklyn Steel

There are artists that wish they could find success in one outlet but the rare instance they find glory with two is enough to cement their place as iconic.

For Peter Hook, the former bassist of Joy Division and New Order, acclaim, success, and hits is what anyone in any musical outlet today wish they could have. To prove this, Hook and his band, The Light returned to New York City for the first time in over a year-and-a-half to display the power of songs he created in his two previous bands with a packed gig at Brooklyn Steel.

The British musician has been touring the work of Joy Division and New Order yearly since 2010 in North America and in between, Hooky has released two acclaimed books about the live of both of the acts, and through that, he has connected with his audience on levels that have not been done before because now it is personal.

The fans now know his side of the story and see how accessible the music pioneer has been this decade and now he is seeing the reward with his largest solo show ever in the Big Apple.

Over 2,000 fans packed into the Brooklyn warehouse Friday night to hear the Substance record, which is the hits of Joy Division and New Order, come to life. It is part dance party, party trip down memory lane, and part awe inspiring that an arsenal of this many quality of songs he was apart of writing.

Opening the show with a 90-minute New Order set, everyone from all age ranges inside the venue were ready to shake off the worries of the work week and get ready to open their weekend. Dancing to tunes like "State of the Nation," "Age of Consent," "Bizarre Love Triangle," "True Faith," "Blue Monday," and "Temptation."

Hardly addressing the crowd in between songs, Hook just let the music do the talking and kept the tempo up before a brief intermission.

After returning to stage, he realized they didn't do "Too Late," which addressed and then performend before kicking into his Joy Division set.

For the first time in 8 years, his son, Jack Bates, is not touring with the band due to fulfilling a duty as the new bassist for The Smashing Pumpkins, something Hook joked about.

"My son is not with us tonight because he has gone off to join the fucking Smashing Pumpkins," the Manchester man said. "How ungrateful kids can be these days?"

His latest bassist, Hook says, had to learn 40 songs in a week, and has not skipped a beat.

Doing an hours worth of Joy Division material which included "Transmission," "Warsaw," "Shadowplay," "Isolation," "Dead Souls," "She's Lost Control," "Atmosphere," and the closer, "Love Will Tear Us Apart." Ending the night on the high in which he did, everyone inside the massive and overheated venue left with pleasure they had known and expected to have.

Thursday, April 26, 2018

Parquet Courts on 'Ellen'

Watch Parquet Courts perform "Wide Awake" on Ellen.

Questlove Guesses Prince Tracks on 'Fallon'

Roots bandleader Questlove took a break from playing drums on The Tonight Show and sat down with Jimmy Fallon where the host quizzed the Prince fan and music expert on song titles from the Purple One by playing one-second, half-second and quarter-second samples of Prince songs as Questlove attempts to guess the correct tracks.

Run the Jewels on 'Colbert'

Watch Run the Jewels perform "Thursday in the Danger Room" on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert.

Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Andrew W.K. on 'Conan'

Watch Andrew W.K. perform "Music is Worth Living For" on Conan.

Listen to Nas 'Live at the Kennedy Center'

In 2014, Nas celebrated the 20th anniversary of his debut, Illmatic, with a performance at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C. The performance was released this year as a Record Store Day vinyl and as a PBS special. Now, you can listen to the whole performance online.

Friday, April 20, 2018

The English Beat Announce 1st Album in 36 Years!

In June, The English Beat will release their first album since 1982 called Here We Go Love. 

Take a look at the cover, above, and the tracklisting, below:

1. how can you stand there?
2. the one and the only
3. redemption time
4. if killing worked
5. here we go love
6. never die
7. the love you give
8. you really oughtta know
9. you're stuck
10. every time you told me
11. dem call it ska
12. drive her away
13. be there for you

Thursday, April 19, 2018

Prince's Estate Release Original Version of 'Nothing Compares 2 U'

For the first time ever, Prince's estate released his original 1984 version of "Nothing Compares 2 U" which he wrote and recorded but never put out on his own. In 1985, the song was released by The Family, a Prince-formed and sanctioned band, then in 1990 the song exploded thanks to Sinéad O’Connor. Take a look and listen to the "Purple One" and The Revolution playing the song along with rehearsal footage which has also been unearthed for the first time.

Ben Gibbard on 'Conan'

Watch Ben Gibbard perform an inclusive version of The Beatles' "And I Love Her" on Conan.

Saturday, April 14, 2018

GHOST Announce New Album

Ghost will release their new album, Prequelle, and will arrive in June. 

The album is a bit different than most records from the Swedish metal band as singer Papa Emeritus has converted himself to Cardinal Copia.

Take a look at the cover, above, and the tracklisting, below, and the video for "Rats:"

1 Ashes
2 Rats
3 Faith
4 See The Light
5 Miasma
6 Dance Macabre
7 Pro Memoria
8 Witch Image
9 Helvetesfonster
10 Life Eternal

SZA Brings Out Kendrick Lamar at Coachella

During her Friday night set, SZA brought out Top Dawg top dog Kendrick Lamar. Take a look!

Jack White on 'Fallon'

Jack White appeared on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon on Thursday and spoke with the host. Take a look.

Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Kamasi Washington Details New Album

Kamasi Washington took to social media on Monday to announce his new album, Heaven and Earth.

He also posted about what the project was about on Instagram, see above. The double-album arrives in June.

Take a look at the cover, above, and the tracklisting, below:

I. Earth:
01 Fists of Fury
02 Can You Hear Him
03 Hubtones
04 Connections
05 Tiffakonkae
06 The Invincible Youth
07 Testify
08 One of One

II. Heaven:
09 The Space Travelers Lullaby
10 Vi Lua Vi Sol
11 Street Fighter Mas
12 Song for the Fallen
13 Journey
14 The Psalmnist
15 Show Us the Way
16 Will You Sing

Monday, April 9, 2018

Manic Street Preachers Detail New Album

The legendary Manic Street Preachers will release their new album, Resistance is Futile, on Friday. 

Of their first new recordings in four years, the band said in a press release: “The main themes of ‘Resistance is Futile’ are memory and loss; forgotten history; confused reality and art as a hiding place and inspiration. It’s obsessively melodic - in many ways referencing both the naive energy of ‘Generation Terrorists’ and the orchestral sweep of ‘Everything Must Go’. After delay and difficulties getting started, the record has come together really quickly over the last few months through a surge of creativity and some old school hard work.”

Take a look at the cover, above, and the tracklisting, below, and watch the video for  "International Blue."

1. People Give In 
2. International Blue 
3. Distant Colours 
4. Vivian 
5. Dylan & Caitlin 
6. Liverpool Revisited 
7. Sequels of Forgotten Wars 
8. Hold Me Like a Heaven 
9. In Eternity 
10. Broken Algorithms 
11. A Song for the Sadness 
12. The Left Behind

The Nectars Announce Debut Album

New Jersey buzz band The Nectars will release their debut album, Sci-Fi Television, in May.

“Sci-Fi Television is our cumulative answer to the last 60 years of rock music, dissected on our alien operating table," says the band in a press release. "Immensely personal and sometimes profoundly goofy, we wrote these songs as an attempted escape from all the real life monsters surrounding us. What we didn’t realize initially was isolating ourselves from the turmoil of news media left us alone with an entirely different beast. Ourselves. Picking apart the bad habits of our 20’s through song brought clarity to our band message. Profound societal change begins from within. There’s no hiding from yourself. With that in mind we’re abducting Rock N Roll, and never bringing it back. Enjoy.” 

Take a look at the cover, above, and the tracklisting, below, and watch their video for "I Want It."

1. Holy 
2. Heaven 
3. Cemetery Girl 
4. We Will Run 
5. I Want It 
6. Don’t Panic 
7. Lights Off 
8. Tame 
9. Tired

Sunday, April 8, 2018

Royston Langdon Discusses New Project LEEDS

In the over 20 years Royston Langdon has been making music, he has made it for himself and whatever band he has been in but has never crafted a tune for his own sake. This spring, Langdon, who will go under the moniker LEEDS, will release his solo debut, Everything's Dandy.

The former Spacehog frontman and Arckid member has been living in New York City for over 20 years and while he was born in Leeds, England, the Big Apple has been his home longer than many would imagine. He told Officially A Yuppie that the record is "not about NY anymore than any other of my records are. It's about where I am now, at the place I find myself. Wherever I go, there I am. It's a lateral look at myself within the city I suppose but it isn't about NY parse. If you listen to it, that will become obvious I think."

Langdon aka LEEDS spoke to us about his new record, his former projects, and what it means to do it on his own.

You are going under the moniker LEEDS as an homage to you hometown, why are you not using your name? 

It's not really an homage to my home town. It's more of an effort, and I recognize perhaps ironically, to avoid immediate association with my past. Also, 'LEEDS' is what I often find myself answering to the first or second question I'm asked once I've opened my mouth. 'Where you from?' Seems interesting to me that these are common conclusions being made here nevertheless.

Do you intend to tour or have a full band with you at any point? 

I'd love to tour. Will have to wait and see if the music connects with people enough to initiate that sort of engagement. I think it would probably make most sense for me to tour solo at first, get the ball rolling. Ultimately though, the songs really do need to be performed with a band to make them come to life the way I made them on these recordings.

The songs are so much more personal than anything you have ever written, what prompted you to craft this record after nearly 30 years in the music business? 

Thanks very much. That's always the goal for me. Being vulnerable isn't easy. Making music is ultimately compulsive for me. After a while of leaving it on the shelf so to speak, it starts to compel me to take it down and make something. It's a natural part of me. It would be a disservice to myself to avoid that indefinitely. It can comes at a high price though, to do it wholly.

The big misconception many have about you is that Spacehog formed in the UK then once you broke big in the U.S. you stayed in the city but that wasn't the case at all. How did it all work out? 

I came to NY in '94, way before Spacehog, to visit my brother, Antony who'd been living in NY for a year at that time. I came for two weeks, for a holiday and to spend time with Ant. I fell in love with NY on the taxi ride from JFK. Two days before I'd arrived, Ant met a guy called, Jonny Cragg (a drummer from Leeds) who was working in a cafe on 2nd Ave in the East Village. Once here, Ant was very keen that I should stay and that we should start a band. At the time I was in another band in the UK. I was sort of fed up of music. My brother can be very persuasive and the truth was that my band in England was not that good. I stayed. Ant and I began auditioning drummers. Jonny was the second. He was the best I'd ever heard. Within a few weeks I'd gotten a lucky break by securing and internship at a recording studio, Baby Monster. I loved this job. I got to be around The Ramones, Dinosaur Jr. Sonic Youth, Pavement. Soon I was making a small wage. The real beauty was that I had access to the studio at night. I spent all my time there making songs after hours. So Spacehog was very much formed and then signed within NYC.

Spacehog reunited in 2008, is there talks about a new album soon?

 I was never happy with our third record and so I wanted to go out with one that sounded improved. There are no plans to do anything in the future.

One of my favorite projects you did was Arckid, I must have seen nearly every gig you did in NYC in your short run. What ever happened with that project and will the songs you released ever see the light of day? Could a reunion ever happen? 

Was bad enough been in Spacehog with one Langdon brother. Working with two brothers was like the musical equivalent of a freak yachting accident waiting to happen every minute. Volatile. There were some great songs though. And a great video for 'I'll Stick Around'.

You have been in New York so long that it is certainly not the same city you arrived when you got here. What do you think of the change? Does New York City still excite you? 

NY's always been changing and it always will. Rapidly. In that sense it remains exciting and vital. The influx of global money especially from the finical sector has made the artist community suffer and diminish, certainly from how it was when I arrived in 1994. And so there are things that one misses of course, like certain places, some of the characters etc. that lack in that economy was paradoxically good for the economy of artists and art. Now, it's so much harder than ever to survive here as an artist. I do think NY will suffer a dilemma of identity within this paradox at some point. Though barring an Apocalyptic event, it will always remain one of the great social hubs of the planet. Aren't we humans physically social at heart?

The latest collection of songs you kept private from many people, why was that? 

I was working on the business side of the music business. I wanted to keep the focus on helping other artists ford the many challenges of necessary change the internet heralded to the old form of the industry. However, it was useful to stay connected to my personal creative expression of choice, music but only for personal reasons, i.e. so that I could remain honest and fulfilled even within that less creative environment. Would have felt like a conflict of interests were I to be sharing my own work whilst working on behalf of other artists. I respect the art form too much to do that.

After all these years making music and seeing the business and landscape change, is everything dandy? 

'Everything's Dandy' is an effort to speak to our societal propensity towards upholding the 'dreamland' we've made. The fake version of society which is now impossible to see beyond. I wanted to express the beyond, for me personally. I've been through a lot. I've been forced to change or die. I've had to let go of a hell of a lot. People, places, things. My dreams. Innocent dreams of being in bands. The broken dreams of my family life. The idealized dream of my country subjugated by a Wall Street Government. The American dream. There's sorrow there but in a way that's also still just old joy. There's a deeper peace in the acceptance of that. What IS is now, and that's way more fulfillment than I've ever known and so yes, everything is looking dandy. It's wonderful to be in this position I am with my insights I have at my age. I've still so much to do and so little time.

What advice do you have for any up and coming artist today? 

Get a good lawyer.

Johnny Marr Announces 3rd Solo Album

In June, former Smiths guitarist Johnny Marr will release his third solo album, Call the Comet. 

"Call The Comet is my own magic realism. It’s set in the not-too-distant future and is mostly concerned with the idea of an alternative society. The characters in the songs are searching for a new idealism, although there are some personal songs in there too. It’s something that people like me can relate to," he said in a press release. 

1. Rise
2. The Tracers
3. Hey Angel
4. Hi Hello
5. New Dominations
6. Day In Day Out
7. Walk Into The Sea
8. Bug
9. Actor Attractor
10. Spiral Cities
11. My Eternal
12. A Different Gun

Ben Howard Announces New Album

In June, Ben Howard will release his new album, Noonday Dream via Republic Records. 

Take a look at the cover, above, and the tracklisting, below:

1. Nica Libres At Dusk
2. Towing The Line
3. A Boat To An Island On The Wall
4. What The Moon Does
5. Someone In The Doorway
6. All Down The Mines (Interlude)
7. The Defeat
8. A Boat To An Island Part II Agatha’s Song
9. There’s Your Man
10. Murmurations

Thursday, April 5, 2018

Arctic Monkeys Announce New Album


Next month, Arctic Monkeys will release their first album in five years -- Tranquility Base Hotel and Casino. 

Take a look at the cover, above, and the tracklisting, below, and watch the album trailer. 

01 Star Treatment
02 One Point Perspective
03 American Sports
04 Tranquility Base Hotel & Casino
05 Golden Trunks
06 Four Out of Five
07 The World's First Ever Monster Truck Front Flip
08 Science Fiction
09 She Looks Like Fun
10 Batphone
11 The Ultracheese

Wednesday, April 4, 2018

Rising Artist: Goat Girl

London continues to be a breeding ground for influential indie rock and in turbulent times it simply crafts some of our greatest artists. This latest band is no exception and is proof of the continuing tradition of great acts to come from across the pond. Goat Girl are the band that defines our current times. The South London four-piece combine the guitar work of The Smiths as well as the girl power of The Breeders and the playful but quirky folk attitude of The Roches.

This week, they will release their 19-song self-titled debut and made their way to SXSW where they took Austin, Texas, by storm. “Simply put, it’s an album that comes from growing up in London and the first-hand experience of our city’s devolution,” say the band in a press release about the record.

“We wanted to think of it as this place seen not necessarily just through our eyes, but someone who can’t get past the abnormalities and strange happenings that exist in our city. We think this gives the freedom lyrically and musically to explore unspoken truths and emotions that we all as humans feel.”

This is a band that will have all of the taste makers of the years talking and one you want to jump on now.

Gang Of Four Detail Anti-Trump EP

Later this month, Gang of Four will release their brand new 4-song EP called Complicit

The EP features Ivanka Trump on the cover and no surprise, the collection is an anti-Trump array of tunes. 

"When we think of ‘the media’, everyone has lots of ideas about what we mean. It could be social media, where hundreds of memes criss-cross the world; informing, misinforming, beginning or reinforcing ideas that may last a lifetime and beyond. Ideas about Jews, Muslims, or, say, the world trade centre or perhaps, the criminality of certain American politicians. And then there is the receding traditional media with disappearing jobs like ‘journalists’ and ‘fact checkers’. That’s the media the Trump family despise," guitarist and founder Andy Gill says of the song, "Ivanka" which is featured on the album. 

Take a look at the cover, above, and the tracklisting, below:

    1. Lucky
    2. Ivanka (Things You Can’t Have)
    3. I’m A Liar
    4. Lucky (10 O’Clock Chemical Remix)

Tuesday, April 3, 2018

Underrated Classic: The Roches 'Nurds'

In the early 70s, long before the trio of sisters in HAIM were dominating the airwaves, a three member sorority from New Jersey was turning heads with their quirky and oddball lyrics and alternative take on folk music. The Roches, formed by three sisters, Maggie, Terre, and Suzzy, released a string of albums during their heyday but their third album, 1980s, Nurds, heard them becoming more off the wall and unique than ever before. The Irish-American sisters never strayed from their roots and they took the music of their heritage and found a way to make it punk and rather nontraditional and the best use of that came on Nurds. The 10-song record, which was an inside look into their mind, made listeners and critics rather frightened by the disturbing images they portrayed in their lyrics.  On "The Death of Suzzy Roche," Suzzy writes about her own demise and on "My Sick Mind," the sisters discuss what it is like being a woman in the early 80s and having to make sure they need to look their best at all times or else they will be judged. On "This Feminine Position," the sisters sing about being with a man and what their past sexual exploits while letting him know he might not be as good as he thinks he is. It was music way ahead of its time and in the wake of the "Nasty Woman" movement, these three ladies were showing how it was done with songs that will still resonate nearly 40 years later. Nurds peaked at 130 on the Billboard album charts but for The Roches, it was never about Billboard position as much as it was being able to speak their minds.

Friday, March 30, 2018

Tuesday, March 27, 2018

Ben Harper and Charlie Musselwhite on 'Corden'

Watch Ben Harper and Charlie Musselwhite perform "The Bottle Wins Again" on The Late Late Show Starring James Corden.

Monday, March 26, 2018

Live Review: The Strypes at Mercury Lounge

In their first trip to New York City in four years, Ireland's The Strypes sold out the infamous Mercury Lounge and brought their blend of mod rock revival back to town.

It was a early show that was able to cure a case of the Mondays in what feels like a never ending winter. As the band got a heroes welcome walking from the back of the intimate room to the stage, the fresh-faced lads from Cavan, Ireland, were ready to make their presence known.

The band's raucous stage show had all 200 people in the venue jumping for joy. Aside from the songs, which are clearly inspired by The Who, Thin Lizzy, and the Stones, they are a baby faced band that looks the part. Singer Ross Farely was in a pilots jumpsuit and rocked a pair of shades, bassist Pete O'Hanlan looked like a young Roger Daltrey, guitarist Josh McClory looked as if he stepped off the Pretty Green runway but it was drummer Evan Walsh who took classic New York City punk and combined it with what you would have seen in the London punk scene in the late 70s.

The band slammed through songs from their 2013 debut, Snapshot, and their latest, Spitting Image, which arrived last year. The Strypes are an interesting band because in 2018, they are one of the few acts that has releases that have not physically been available in the U.S. like most European bands had years ago. While the releases are on streaming services, the band would intro the tracks from their second album, Little Victories, which never arrived in America, as well as other E.P.'s as if fans have never heard them before.

In the near hour they were on stage, the intimate return was not only a success, it was enough to show that while they are still so young their best days are certainly ahead.

Tuesday, March 20, 2018

The Los Angeles Mixtape

In our latest installment of our cultural mixtape series, we fled the country and headed to a city. Instead of showcasing the music of a whole nation, we are looking at a whole city that has given the world so much music -- La La Land... Los Angeles. 

Like the food and people that are in the City of Angels, this mixtape is an amalgamation of styles, cultures, ideas, genres, and vibes on one playlist. 

Moby on 'Colbert'

Watch Moby perform "This Wild Darkness" on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert.

Arcade Fire on 'SNL'

Watch Arcade Fire perform "Put Your Money on Me," and "Creature Comfort" on Saturday Night Live.

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Buddy Guy on 'Kimmel'

Watch Buddy Guy perform "The Sky is Crying" on Jimmy Kimmel Live!

Beth Ditto on 'Meyers'

Watch Beth Ditto perform "Oh My God" on Late Night with Seth Meyers.

Monday, March 12, 2018

Peter Hook & The Light Return To North America

Next month, Joy Division and New Order's Peter Hook and his band, The Light, will return to North America for their 2018 tour which will see them bring Factory Records' Substance albums to life. 

The compilation record of Joy Division and New Order material was released in 1988 on Factory Records. This tour will mark the first time this record has ever been played live before from start to finish. 

We have covered every single tour Hook has done with the Light and each experience gets better and better. It really is amazing having these songs come alive and Hook, ever the showman, is having the time of his life doing it.

The tour begins in late April '18 and sees The Light play a mammoth 28 dates over nearly seven weeks ending up in Florida in early June '18. Some of the reaction to the band's previous North American Substance dates below:

Thu 4/26/18    Union Transfer, Philadelphia, PA
Fri 4/27/18      Brooklyn Steel , Brooklyn, NY       
Sat 4/28/18      Paradise Rock Club, Boston, MA - SOLD OUT  
Mon 4/30/18   Fairmount Theatre, Montreal, QC  - SOLD OUT
Tue 5/1/18      Danforth Music Hall, Toronto, ON - SOLD OUT
Thu 5/3/18      Royal Oak Music Hall, Royal Oak, MI      
Fri 5/4/18        Metro, Chicago, IL- SOLD OUT
Sat 5/5/18        Majestic Theatre, Madison, WI
Mon 5/7/18     First Avenue, Minneapolis, MN      
Tue 5/8/18      Venue, Vancouver, BC        
Thu 5/10/18    Neptune Theater, Seattle, WA        
Fri 5/11/18      Wonder Ballroom, Portland, OR   
Sat 5/12/18      Warfield, San Francisco, CA          
Mon 5/14/18   Brooklyn Bowl,  Las Vegas, NV     
Tue 5/15/18    Metro Music Hall,  Salt Lake City, UT      
Thu 5/17/18    Van Buren, Phoenix, AZ     
Fri 5/18/18      Wiltern Los Angeles, CA(Exclusive Unknown Pleasures/Closer Show)
Sat 5/19/18      House Of Blues, San Diego, CA      
Mon 5/21/18   Ace Of Spades, Sacramento, CA    
Tue 5/22/18    Granada, Dallas, TX           
Wed 5/23/18   Mohawk, Austin, TX           
Fri 5/25/18      Cat's Cradle, Carrboro, NC           
Sat 5/26/18      The Mill & Mine, Knoxville, TN     
Sun 5/27/18    Variety Playhouse, Atlanta, GA     
Tue 5/29/18    Exit / In, Nashville, TN        
Wed 5/30/18   Paper Tiger, San Antonio, TX        
Thu 5/31/18    Warehouse Live,  Houston, TX      
Sat 6/3/18        Respectable Live, West Park Beach, FL
Sun 6/3/18      Plaza Live, Orlando, FL      
Mon 6/4/18     State Theater, St. Petersburg, FL    
For More Information, Check Out Hook's Website