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Mobb Deep's Havoc Readies Kushy Solo Debut

Destruction, Terror, and Mayhem beware. The abstract, violent force Queensbridge producer and MC known as Havoc will unleash his ferociously titled The Kush (okay, maybe not so ferocious) via Nature Sounds on September 18.

It's been 15 years since Havoc made a name for himself as one half of Mobb Deep, yet The Kush is Havoc's solo debut (though it's somehow billed as a prequel to an "official" solo album). And this pre-official solo release boasts a few guest spots, including one from Mobb Deep-mate Prodigy, whose Return of the Mac landed earlier this year.

Havoc has a few hometown dates heralding The Kush's arrival. The next one is tonight, September 13. [MORE...]

New Porno Fancey Gets Schmancey on Second Album

It was almost a year ago when we spoke to New Pornographers guitarist Todd Fancey about releasing his sophomore album under the Fancey moniker, the follow-up to 2004's self-titled debut. Well, the cheekily titled Schmancey will finally hit shelves this fall via What Are Records?

Overeager collectors of all things Porno-related (clear history! clear history!) should be able to download the digital version of Schmancey from the What Are site on September 14. On the very same day, the full Fancey band will play a show in Seattle to kick off a tour supporting Lavender Diamond and, you guessed it, the New Pornographers. A CD version of Schmancey, meanwhile, is expected in early October.

Of course, Señor Fancey Schmancey will also accompany the NPs on guitar for the rest of their previously reported fall dates. [MORE...]

James Murphy Talks Arcade Fire, FABRIC36, LCD LP3
He's remixing "Black Mirror"!

Photo by Kirstie Shanley

In May, James Murphy and his LCD Soundsystem caused heavy palpitations in a capacity crowd at Chicago's Metro venue, only to slink downstairs to the basement Smart Bar an hour later and spin disco records nobody had ever heard of (but everybody dug) until the wee hours.

Murphy remembers passing out on the floor that night. We're hardly surprised.

James Murphy does a lot of things very well: make records, produce records, and play other people's records. Though the first two skills should be familiar to anyone who makes it to the second paragraph of any piece about Murphy on this website, you used to have to be in the right place at the right time to experience him in action on the ones and twos.

Thankfully, FABRICLIVE36, the mix James and his LCD Soundsystem cohort Pat Mahoney crafted for the venerable London club/label Fabric, gives you a little peek into the crates of a dude whose record intake is as impressive as his recorded output.

Over the phone from London earlier this week, Murphy noted the difference between making bodies move from behind the wheels of steel, rather than via his regular gig centerstage with LCD. "There's nothing to look at, it's not like a performance," he said. "You're just trying to make people dance and forget about you, which I like. When you're playing live, people don't have a chance to forget about you. They're pretty different. DJing is much more about trying to make people happy." [MORE...]


Deerhunter Play Benefit for Georgia Arts Lawyers

Don't most lawyers get enough seamy characters and microphone deepthroaters when they're not working? Eh, not the esquires of Georgia Lawyers for the Arts, the Atlanta-based non-profit organization that assists in securing pro bono (that is, free) legal counsel for artists and non-profit arts organizations in Georgia.

The organization-- who've probably sat down with a mic-licker or three before-- will host its hometown's recently reshuffled Deerhunter at nearby Athens, GA's famed 40 Watt Club for a benefit for the organization September 19. Fellow Peach State denizens Mouser, People, Alexis Gideon, and Powers will join the band in paying off any future karmic mishaps, drug busts, or insurmountably actionable online poker debts.

Thanks to Mike Melonakos for the tip. More Deerhunter dates after the jump, just for kicks. [MORE...]

Sightings Drop Andrew W.K.-Produced LP, Tour

It's time to party! Or, failing that, whatever you do when you listen to noise rock (make dinner?). Through the Panama, the latest neighbor-buggering long-player from blaring Brooklynites Sightings, will hit the streets October 28.

And it's about damn time, too; we've only brought up its impending release twice already. But that may have something to do with Panama's beloved whirling dervish-cum-producer Andrew W.K., who probably lends the proceedings the same whiff of spirit a cheerleading squad might. All that spirit; can you hear it? Well, you can in October, anyway.

To note: Through the Panama will be released on CD from the folks at Load, while Ecstatic Peace will grind Panama into the vinyl. Thurston Moore: an analog warrior for these digital times.

What's more, Sightings will take the Panama party to the people on a short run of October dates. [MORE...]

Nick Drake's Fruit Tree Box Reissue Due

Fragile folk-rock icon Nick Drake coaxed three albums out of his brief recording tenure, all of which have grown in reverence from fans in the years since Drake's death.

Once upon a time, far before the folks at Volkswagen gave Drake a boost, those albums-- Five Leaves Left, Bryter Layter, and Pink Moon-- were collected together in a box set that served as the perfect encapsulation of Drake's majestic ways to blue. That box, titled Fruit Tree (and not to be confused with this year's Family Tree), has been out of print for seven years. But come November 6, as previously mentioned, UME/Fontana will give fans a crack at accruing a good chunk of Nick Drake's discography all at once.

Apart from the classic trio, the 10,000 copies of the Fruit Tree CD box and the 2,000 vinyl sets will come with a 108-page book "featuring song by song analysis by producer Joe Boyd, engineer John Wood, arranger Robert Kirby and songwriter/music journalist and friend Robin Frederick," (says the press release) as well as a DVD copy of the recent Drake documentary A Skin Too Few. This is, the manufacturers warn, a one-time-only run, so acting fast is advised.

In addition, the San Francisco City Arts & Lectures series will host "Remembering Nick Drake", which finds Nick's sister Gabrielle, his producer Joe Boyd, and songwriter Jolie Holland in conversation. That'll take place at San Francisco's Herbst Theater October 2. Both Ms. Drake and Mr. Boyd will be on hand in L.A. October 5 when the American Cinematheque presents "A Place to Be - A Celebration of Nick Drake", which features more dialogue, the L.A. premiere of A Skin Too Few, and a series of short films inspired by Drake and composed by the likes of longtime video lensman Tim Pope and Aussie dreamboat Heath Ledger. A Skin Too Few will also screen October 3 as part of San Francisco's Documentary Festival.

The Cure Announce Rescheduled Dates

In a Venn diagram attempting to show the overlap between fans of the Cure and NBA diehards, we imagine the two circles would be on opposite sides of the room. But both groups share one major thing: the venues where they worship their respective idols.

Thus, the Cure explain that their rescheduled tour dates are taking place a little later than expected as the result of cities trying not to schedule concerts during the NBA Playoffs: "A lot of the venues we needed wouldn't let us confirm dates in the March/April period, but we understand they all have to live in hope!" wrote the band on its website. Hey, maybe Cure fans and basketball fans have more in common than we thought.

And so, the new Cure tour kicks off May 9, 2008, in Washington, DC and runs through late June.

As for ticket logistics, all tickets to the canceled shows will be valid for the rescheduled dates, all but one of which are at the original venues. The lone exception is the Seattle date, which the band will make up for by playing an extra long set at next year's Sasquatch! Festival. Tickets to the old Seattle show will be good for general admission to the festival.

The good news is that the Cure were able to include even more cities on the new, later route, including shows in Phoenix, Austin, and Cleveland. Still, anyone who wants a refund on a 2007 ticket can obtain it at the point of purchase until November 1.

Of course, the Cure still have those few appearances left this year. Their next show is October 6 in Mountain View, California.

Thanks to Geoff Cox for the tip.

UPDATE: 65daysofstatic are opening all of the rescheduled shows. [MORE...]


Photos: Interpol and Liars [Boston, MA; 09/12/07]
Plus bonus Liars videos!

Photos by Josh Bean

The dynamic duo of Brooklyn post-punks Interpol and NYC/Berlin/L.A. shapeshifters Liars have just set out on their joint fall tour, in support of their new albums. The sharply dressed rockers we love to admire donned their suits and ties last night at Boston University's Agganis Arena, after the Best New Music-earning Liars warmed up the stage with their frenetic tunes and comedy stylings. During the set, Angus Andrew donned a Paul Pierce Celtics jersey and boasted about the new words he's learned in Beantown-- "stabbing," perhaps.

As previously reported, Cat Power will play with both bands tomorrow night at Madison Square Garden. The rest of the dates and more photos below.

Sorry we didn't grab any shots of Angus' jersey in all its glory-- photographers were only allowed stage-front access for the first three songs of Liars' set, and he took his jacket off after that. But to make it up to you, we've got these two cool little video promos the band made for their new album, Liars:




M.I.A. Extends Fall Tour

Photo by Kirstie Shanley

What can you get for 10 dollar? About half a ticket to one of M.I.A.'s recently added fall shows.

The woman with the seizure-inducing website will support the success of Kala, this album that we sorta liked, with dates that now stretch across North America and into late November.

UK residents, don't forget about the "Jimmy" single, which is coming your way via XL on October 1.

M.I.A.'s next show is this Friday, September 14, in Austin, Texas as part of Austin City Limits. [MORE...]


The National Cover Springsteen on New Single

The scruffy, Cincinnati-bred chroniclers of twenty-something life known as the National will take on that scruffy, Jersey-bred chronicler of blue collar life known as the Boss aka BRUUUUUUCE aka plain old Bruce Springsteen on the B-side of their new single.

The band's cover of Bruce's Nebraska gem "Mansion on the Hill", recorded live at the opening night of last year's New York Guitar Festival, will back the"Apartment Story" single. Beggars Banquet will release "Apartment Story" in the UK on November 5 and November 6 in the U.S.

The National also have tour dates stretching into December in support of this year's quietly good Boxer. [MORE...]

Hold Steady's Finn Goes Back to School, Fishes on TV

"Big heads and soft bodies make for lousy lovers," Craig Finn of the Hold Steady has been known to sing; not exactly the kind of sentiment you want seeping into academia, homebase of that unfortunate trifecta.

Nevertheless, Craig will brave the hallowed halls-- well, the hallowed dining hall, anyhow-- of his alma mater, Boston College, later this month as he participates in a "master class" with American Studies prof Carlo Rotella.

The event will feature Craig talking about "his life, career, and music" in conversation with Rotella in BC's Lyons Dining Hall on September 25 from 7:30-9:00 P.M. Auditors, take heed: the chat is open to the public.

Potential topics of debate: "Words: Will they, in fact, save your life?"
"All your favorite books: Well written, or simply reliant on context?"
"Discuss: Killer parties and their role in intellectual circles."
"The beer bong: Novelty or necessity?"

Oh, and on an as-yet-undetermined date in the future, Craig will be the featured guest on ex-Minnesota Twins first baseman Kent Hrbek's "Kent Hrbek Outdoors" sports program. Hence the picture of Craig with a big fella and a fish up there.

God, I wish this band was my uncles.

In other Hold Steady news, they've got that tour with Art Brut coming up, which guitarist Tad Kubler predicts "should be a fucking blast" (no objection here). Before that, Koob reminds us, the band has "a few weeks off in September which will be focused on writing. No promises, but we're hoping to have a new jam or two for the fall tour."

Sweet! As for Franz, he'll be at the FMC Policy Summit next week, leaving Galen and Bobby plenty of time to hang out, read comics and maybe catch a flick. [MORE...]


Too Pure Launches 7" Club With Electrelane's Susman

Hey you. Yes, you, idle browser of the interweb. Person who spends all your weekends inside scouring the charts and padding up your listings. Did you know that special someone could be out there right now? We're talking about hot singles, dude, just waiting to spin on your turntable!

Beggars-allied Too Pure is the latest label to take the singles club plunge, inaugurating a series that will ride seven glorious inches of grooved plastic well into 2008. Series subscribers sign up for a year and will receive 12 seven-inches in all, one per month, each boasting two exclusive songs from "personal favourites, friends of Too Pure, and rising talent," says the TP site. The first piece of vinyl ships in October.

Things heat up tomorrow night (September 13) at a launch gig at London's Buffalo Bar featuring the first three Too Pure Singles Club acts: Manchester's LoneLady, Vera November (aka Verity Susman of Too Pure-signed Electrelane), and Kent-spawned trio It Hugs Back.

LoneLady's offering arrives in October, while Vera, naturally, has dibs on November, and It Hugs Back share a holiday embrace in December. All singles are limited to 500 copies, and Too Pure suggests a few may be made available to non-subscribers via select independent retailers. Rough Trade Digital will also offer downloads of the 7" tunes.
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