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Photos: Los Campesinos! / The Most Serene Republic [Los Angeles, CA; 11/27/07]

Photos by Akmal Naim

It was an evening of ecstatic shouts, wailing violins, and economy-sized bands of youngsters spilling over the stage as Los Campesinos! and the Most Serene Republic took their caffeinated wiles to Los Angeles' Echo last night.

Each act had a newish Arts & Crafts release to tout, of course; the exclamatory Welsh outfit still spreading the gospel of its electrifying Sticking Fingers Into Sockets EP, and the Canadian crew administering a dose of Population.

Los Campesinos! will likely give us all something to shout about when they rock ATP vs. Pitchfork (and other dates) and issue their long-awaited debut full-length, titled Hold On Now, Youngster... for the moment, in 2008.




Sufjan, Bjork, Arcade Fire in Rock for Kids Auction
Also stuff from: Stephen Malkmus, Sonic Youth, Wilco, TV on the Radio, Cat Power, Spoon, Feist, Bright Eyes, Decemberists, Modest Mouse, Flaming Lips, Beck

We thought massive summer festivals were the best for bringing all of our favorite artists together, but it turns out charity auctions are even more effective. This Friday, November 30, the 19th Annual Rock for Kids Charity Auction will take place at Chicago's Park West venue, and the list of artists who have contributed autographed swag is plain old exhausting.

On the elder end of the spectrum, there are items from James Brown, Paul McCartney, Elvis Costello, Emmylou Harris, Bruce Springsteen, the Police, the Pretenders, Pink Floyd, Iggy and the Stooges, Lou Reed, Debbie Harry, and the Band. On the non-musical end, there's stuff from Allen Ginsberg, Jack Nicholson, Scarlett Johansson, and Jim Henson.

Then on the meat-and-potatoes-of-Pitchfork-news-coverage end, there are posters, LPs, and other items from Stephen Malkmus, Sonic Youth, the Arcade Fire, Björk, Wilco, Sufjan Stevens, TV on the Radio, Cat Power, Spoon, Neko Case, the New Pornographers, LCD Soundsystem, the Decemberists, Bright Eyes, Ben Gibbard, Rilo Kiley, the National, Clap Your Hands Say Yeah, the Killers, the Flaming Lips, Queens of the Stone Age, Andrew Bird, Modest Mouse, Beck, Peter Bjorn & John, Beastie Boys, Cursive, Bloc Party, Scissor Sisters, Foo Fighters, Ryan Adams, Arctic Monkeys, Of Montreal, Feist, and Iron & Wine. And there are tons more donators from all corners of the entertainment world.

The Park West event is both a live and silent auction, but for those who can't make it in person, you can bid by proxy online here.

Rock for Kids is a Chicago-based organization that provides free music lessons for underprivileged children in the area, through programs like Youth Jam. You might be familiar with their presence at the Pitchfork Music Festival, and the custom mix tapes from festival artists that they have commissioned for auction.

Here are a few of the items:

Arcade Fire autographed Funeral LP:

Feist autographed The Reminder album flat:

Ryan Adams autographed guitar, Björk autographed photo:


Evangelicals' New Album Descends on Dead Oceans

Evangelicals, our favorite Oklahoma weirdoes that aren't the Flaming Lips, have plumbed their psych-filled psyches and returned with "Oklahoma's answer to Prince's Around the World in a Day, but from the perspective of someone crashing at Pee-Wee's Playhouse...who happens to have a chainsaw slowly gnawing through his leg," according to a press release. So much for a sophomore slump, then!

Said crazy-ass album, The Evening Descends, will hit stores via Dead Oceans on January 22 (recall that Evangelicals were among the Secretly Canadian/Jagjaguwar-spawned imprint's first four signings). And based on another quote from the same press release describing Evening's "tales of religion and revivalism, plus insanity, drugs, black-outs, zombies, good and evil, car crashes, love, and a mental institution called Bellawood," the album seems every bit the deserving follow-up to the band's demented 2006 debut, So Gone.

Evangelicals currently have one date on the docket: December 1 at Stillwater, Oklahoma's Eskimo Joe's alongside Colourmusic. [MORE...]

The Big Sleep Record Forever, Tour With Thermals

The forthcoming sophomore set from throbbing, shoe-glancing noiseniks the Big Sleep must be either really ambitious, or really long. Why else would they have named it Sleep Forever? The disc's dozen dizzy ditties hit shelves February 19 from Frenchkiss.

For the second time this year, the Big Sleep will head out on tour with those Portland powerhouses in the Thermals. Because, after all, what do you get when you cross the Thermals and the Big Sleep? An electric blanket. YESSSSSS [MORE...]

Black Lips Announce Huge 2008 Tour

Photo by Daniel Arnold

Okay, that's it, Black Lips are bored. After a 2007 where they released two records, played countless (and still ongoing!) shows, and lent member Cole Alexander's vocal talents to that Fucked Up holiday seven-inch, you'd think the Atlanta foursome would want to use the beginning of next year to take a break before shooting starts on Let It Be, their upcoming silver screen star vehicle.

But nooooo, instead the band has scheduled a reallyreally big U.S. tour. The new dates start right at the beginning of February, three months before Let It Be kicks off production.

Also on the Lips' plate in May: their appearance at our very own ATP vs. Pitchfork doohickey. [MORE...]


Jens Lekman, A Place to Bury Strangers Join P4K ATP
Also Yeasayer, Redd Kross, Marissa Nadler

What do a Swedish crooner, Brooklyn noisenicks and hippies, Cali punk stalwarts, and a Boston folkie have in common? They're all heading to Camber Sands Holiday Centre, near Rye in Sussex county, England for the ATP vs. Pitchfork extravaganza.

Pitchfork picks Jens Lekman, A Place to Bury Strangers, and Yeasayer, and All Tomorrow's Parties picks Redd Kross and Marissa Nadler have joined the already stellar lineup for the festival, going down May 9-11, 2008.

And that lineup again:

Chosen by Pitchfork:

Jens Lekman
A Place to Bury Strangers

The Hold Steady
Black Lips
Hot Chip
Les Savy Fav
No Age
Of Montreal
Man Man
Los Campesinos!
Glass Candy
Dirty Projectors

Chosen by ATP:

Redd Kross
Marissa Nadler
Wooden Shjips
Meat Puppets
The Black Angels
Shit and Shine
Pissed Jeans
Fuck Buttons

Much more to come, of course.

Once again, passes are £140 and include accommodations at Camber Sands' chalets, which feature private bathroom suites, bars, a swimming pool, restaurants, a supermarket, go-karting, and mini-golf! Tickets for the weekend can be purchased through ATP's website in blocks of four, five, six, seven, or eight.

New My Bloody Valentine Album: Not Digital-Only

Seems folks have a little too much Radiohead on the brain of late. As noted in these pages just yesterday, spoke with My Bloody Valentine manager Vinita Joshi recently and reported that MBV plan to "do a Radiohead" when they release their Chinese Democracy next year.

Yet a "Radiohead" implies a pay-what-you-want model-- which Joshi ruled unlikely when she spoke to and, at least for a time, a digital-only release. As it turns out, My Bloody Valentine intend to do no such thing with their Loveless follow-up. (via Idolator) caught up with Joshi, who sought to set the record straight on the new MBV offering. Here's what she said:
In the interview with Billboard I stated that the forthcoming MBV album will more than likely be self-released.

That does not equate to a digital only release, which the article states.

Whilst I understand many bands can self-release via digital shops, that is not the plan.

In fact we see digital as a far inferior format and the band would NEVER plan to release an album exclusively in a digital format.

I was quite upset to be misquoted when I took the time to talk to the journalist in question.
So, to recap: new My Bloody Valentine album? Check. Self-released? Maybe check. Digital-only? Hellz-no check.

As we wait for more My Bloody Valentine album details to emerge, me and my empty bank account will be gazing longingly at these here MBV live dates. Have a look, if you dare. [MORE...]

Fogarino/Franklin's Setting Suns EP Finally Emerges

Photo by Christy Bush

So the Setting Suns-- the oft-discussed, hardly prolific duo comprised of Swervedriver frontguy Adam Franklin and Interpol stickman/secret weapon Sam Fogarino-- are, indeed, for real. And they've got the digitized stuff to prove it, too! The nascent band's self-titled debut EP is available this very moment via iTunes from DH Records, and a physical CD release (sans one of the iTunes tracks) can be expected February 5.

And if that's not enough proof that the Setting Suns are finally on the rise, the band will hit the stage of New York City's Mercury Lounge December 19. That comes at a break in Interpol's touring schedule and before a reunited Swervedriver hit the road next year. Furthermore, a promise is made on the Suns' website about a full LP, due next year. One thing at a time, gentlemen. [MORE...]

Crystal Castles Reveal Debut LP Details

Having flown around the world on the wings of a few singles, Crystal Castles are ready to settle down on a slightly firmer foundation: the full-length record.

The band's self-titled long-playing debut is due February 19 from Last Gang Records, and sports 16 action-packed tracks, from their recent collaboration with L.A. noiseniks HEALTH to the slightly scandalous "Through the Hosiery". Indeed, Crystal Castles plan to spend a little time in the States with their friends in HEALTH come spring (dates TBA), following their current run of intercontinental dates through the rest of the year. [MORE...]

The Rumble Strips Postpone U.S. Dates

In the world of the Rumble Strips, there are good rumbles and bad rumbles. Good rumbles include things like the Stateside release today (November 27) of the upstart quartet's Alarm Clock EP and some accompanying U.S. tour dates. Bad rumbles include things like the band's recent postponement of said dates, which were to begin tonight.

The reason? According to management, "The U.S. dates have been postponed 'til the new year because the band are going straight back into the studio to start demoing new material for the 2nd album."

Fortunately for residents of the Strips' native UK, it's not all bad rumbles from the band; they have also scheduled quite a few new shows there. Think of it as a transatlantic make-up tour of sorts, and keep your eyes peeled for new U.S. dates in 2008. [MORE...]

Interpol Live, Remix EPs Available Right Now

Photo by Matt Ziegler

Today, right now, at this very moment, at select independent record stores, you will find a new Interpol record! Well, sort of. Interpol Live, the band's first officially released concert recording, is a six-song disc of live tracks culled from a set at London's Astoria Club this July.

It's a well-pared bunch: Turn On highlights "Obstacle 1" and "Stella Was a Diver and She Was Always Down" rub up against Admire's "Pioneer to the Falls", "Mammoth", "Rest My Chemistry" and "The Heinrich Maneuver". You'll want to check to see if your local noise emporium will be carrying the disc, and, if so, start movin'.

Also today, a remix EP creatively titled Our Love to Admire Remixed has showed up on iTunes. It includes that Phones remix of "The Heinrich Maneuver" as well as a take on that same track by the Scientist and a "Mammoth" rework by Erol Alkan.

In other Interpol news, the band is presently on a globe-spanning tour, though we're beginning to wonder if those photos they sent back from safari are Kosher. [MORE...]


Radiohead Announce First 2008 Dates

'Bout time, huh guys? Ending a few weeks of speculation regarding 2008 live engagements, Radiohead have announced the first of what we hope will be copious quantities of dates in the year to come.

As reported on and confirmed on the fest's respective websites, Thom Yorke and the gang will descend upon a pair of late June festivals in Germany, Southside and Hurricane. Both take place June 20-22, and it's not yet clear which Radiohead will play first, nor precisely when. The band previously rocked both fests (like a you-know-what) back in 2003.

And while we're talking, the fansite also notes that beloved Radiohead producer-guy Nigel Godrich joined his pal Beck at a not-so-secret performance Sunday, November 25 at Echoplex in Los Angeles. Godrich tapped keys and rattled tambourine for the duration of Mr. Hansen's set.

In Rainbows, meanwhile, hits North American stores January 1 via TBD/ATO, and UK shoppes the day before via XL. Discboxes are due to ship next week, although at least one lucky Radiophile already scored a copy. Oh right, and that catalog box the band didn't green-light, that's out December 10. [MORE...]
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Do you have a news tip for us? Anything crazy happen at a show you attended recently? Do you have inside info on the bands we cover? Is one of your favorite artists (that's not somebody you know personally) releasing a new record you'd like to see covered? You will remain completely anonymous, unless we are given your express permission to reveal your identity. (Please note that publicists, managers, booking agents, and other artist representatives are generally exempt from this rule, but will also be granted anonymity if requested.)


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