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Man Man Sign to Anti- Records

Usually, when a label sends out a press release announcing a new signing, it's pretty straightforward. "We're honored to welcome so-and-so into the fold, blah blah...," says the label, and the band responds, "we're honored to be a part of such a great team, etc., etc."

But this is Man Man we're talking about. And Anti- Records, the Epitaph sister label home to a diverse roster that includes Neko Case, Nick Cave, Bettye LaVette, Cadence Weapon, the late Porter Wagoner, Savath & Savalas, the Coup, the Locust, and, yes, Man Man spiritual godfather Tom Waits.

Hence, the following quotes from Man Man members about the signing:

Honus (vocals/keys/etc): "Championship Rings!"
Chang Wang (guitar/trumpet/etc): "Wow! Yes!"
Sergei Sogay (bass/etc): "Warm Socks!"
Cougar (guitar/etc): "Pizza Party!"
Pow Pow (drums/etc): "Ladies Please!" Exactly.

The Philadelphia junkyard-rock crew's Anti- debut is due out in the spring of 2008. (It's the follow-up to 2005's Six Demon Bag, which was released on Ace Fu.) Expect barking dogs and firecrackers.

As you know, Man Man are on tour with Modest Mouse right now. If you live in Regina, Saskatchewan, throw the men men a pizza party tonight when they play Conexus Arts Centre. Don't forget to bring warm socks. [MORE...]


Mount Eerie Unleashes Massive Photo Tome With LP

Your coffee table is so not ready for this. On November 6, Southern Distribution and P.W. Elverum & Sun, Ltd. will treat Phil Elverum devotees to Mount Eerie Pts. 6 & 7, a furniture-shattering 132-page oversize volume packed with full-color photographs-- gorgeous landscapes, primarily, akin in mood to the films Phil has been showing on tour and meant as a "visual counterpart" to the man's recordings over the years.

Pts. 6 & 7 also houses Mount Eerie music in the form of a single 10" picture disc record, one which holds in its grooves the "sequel" to the Mount Eerie album, released under the Microphones moniker in 2003. Considering the five tracks on Mount Eerie (which have non-numerical titles) parts 1-5, the 10", then, collects the next two parts on its two sides.

The most devoted (and loaded, as this thing carries quite a price tag) of Elverum devotees may already have this artifact-- it's been available on Phil's site for a little while now, and he's been selling it on tour-- but the rest of us will have a chance to scoop it up as Southern spreads it far and wide next week.

And if the aforementioned price tag has you queasy, know this: According to the Mount Eerie website, Pts. 6 & 7 was "printed and bound at the best printer in North America...on 10,000 lbs of FSC certified 50% recycled, 35% post-consumer 'Endeavor' paper ('savings': 20 full grown trees, 60 lbs of water-borne waste, 9000 lbs solid waste, 1000 gallons of water, 1900 lbs of greenhouse gases, 14870 (000) BTU's of energy)." So, yeah.

What's more, Phil spared no expense with the recording, enlisting veteran board-man John Golden to mix it. Phil even wrapped copies of his book in a dust jacket printed on a special stock of paper that feels like, well-- have you ever touched the stringrays at SeaWorld? It feels rather a lot like that. Apparently Elverum thought it the grossest thing ever, which is why he's gleefully sharing it with you. Aww, thanks man. You're the best.

Mount Eerie is presently in the throes of a sizable cross-country trek. Tonight, November 2, finds him in Providence, Rhode Island. [MORE...]

Richard Youngs Preps Response for Jagjaguwar

Without even an official MySpace page to call his own, there's not a lot of info out there about Richard Youngs. Pretty much all we know about him is his city of residence (Glasgow) and his proclivity for appearing every now and again, like the uncle everyone only sees at Thanksgiving, to deliver albums of experimental, arty, folkish tunes (admittedly better than cranberry sauce).

Youngs' Autumn Response serves as the full-length follow-up to 2005's The Naive Shaman, and Jagjaguwar will release it November 6. The mystery man has no tour dates scheduled at the moment, but if he shows up on our doorstep ready to play, we'll be happy to share some stuffing. [MORE...]

Morrissey Close to New Label Deal, Plans New LP, Tour

Photo by Alissa Anderson

I've heard the more a person ignores Morrissey, the closer he gets. Forgive us, then, if posting the following news story puts any distance between you and Steven Patrick's follow-up to 2006's Ringleader of the Tormentors.

Speaking with, Moz manager Merck Mercuriadis says his label-less client will imminently announce the new deal he's signed for his "absolutely written and completely ready" new album, tentatively due in September 2008 and definitely produced by Jerry Finn, who also helmed Moz's You Are the Quarry.

Mercuriadis also spoke of a forthcoming hits compilation bolstered by a pair of new tunes, and-- due to demand-- yet another massive world tour early next year. Though those dates have yet to arise, Moz will set out in January, break briefly, then re-emerge anew in March, taking the show "to the people instead of having the people come to us" by playing spots both commonplace and "off the beaten track." That appears to be the driving force (or, if you will, the Moz's operandi) behind Morrissey's immediate itinerary, yours to get all misty over after the jump. [MORE...]


Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds Dig in for New LP

Photo by Richard Sharman

Dig, Lazarus, Dig!!!
is what they're calling the 14th studio LP from Australian sneer-rock vets Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds. Produced jointly by the band and Nick Launay (whose previous credits include the Bad Seeds' Abattoir Blues/The Lyre of Orpheus), the disc was recorded at Richmond, England's State of the Ark studios over the summer. Though there's no tracklist info just yet, the album's artwork is provided by British artists Tim Noble and Sue Webster. The disc will drop March 3 in the UK on Anti- (a U.S. release is due in the spring, though a date isn't set yet), and news of a first single and a Bad Seeds tour can be expected shortly.

Cave's had plenty on his plate of late, what with the success of Grinderman both at home and abroad, and his recent induction to the Australian Record Industry Association's Hall of Fame. Accepting the award at a ceremony last month, Cave wondered aloud why his longtime musical companions in the Bad Seeds weren't also brought into the ARIA fold, and-- in a move only a dude as cool as Nick Cave could pull off-- went ahead and inducted them himself, adding Birthday Party members Rowland S. Howard and the late Tracy Pew for good measure. (Watch his acceptance speech here.)

Cave is also the subject of an upcoming exhibition at Melbourne's Victorian Arts Centre. The show-- part of a series "showcasing great Australian performers"-- runs November 10 to April 6. And along with Dirty Three violinist Warren Ellis, Cave crafted the soundtrack to the new Brad Pitt film The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford. The soundtrack album hits UK stores November 5 from Mute but is available for download now in the U.S. as well.

New From Dust-to-Digital: Field Recordings, Tuvan Throat Singing, Global Music, Old Music

Like they say: ashes to ashes, Dust-to-Digital, field recordings and Tuvan throat songs to iPods. Fine, no one actually says that, but nonetheless, fans of folk songs, world music, and lots and lots of field recordings are in for a treat this fall with three releases on the schedule from the trustworthy Dust-to-Digital label.

The first is a four-disc box set called Art of Field Recording Volume I, and it comes out on November 6. Assembled by archivists Art and Margo Rosenbaum, the box set includes 110 tracks of "ballads, blues, spirituals, work songs and slave songs, religious singing such as the African-American ring-shout, and other traditional folk music from Georgia, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Michigan and New York," according to a press release. The package comes in an 11" x 11" x 1" color cardboard box with a 96-page 10" x 10" book featuring more than 100 illustrations and photos.

A release party for Art of Field Recording will take place on November 24 at the Melting Point in Athens, Georgia. Several artists from the box set will perform.

The other two compilations come out on November 20. One, Melodii Tuvi: Throat Songs and Folk Tunes From Tuva is pretty self-explanatory: It consists of 16 tracks of Tuvan songs originally issued in the Soviet Union in 1969. The University of Helsinki's Dr. Pekka Gronow unearthed them and provides liner notes for the release, where the tunes appear on CD for the first time.

The other compilation, Black Mirror: Reflections in Global Musics (1918-1955), is not, to our knowledge, named after the Arcade Fire song. (Yes, we know you were confused.) It's an Ian Nagoski-compiled collection of 24 tracks from the titular years, representing the music of countries from Yugoslavia and Laos to Cameroon and Java. All the tracks were newly transferred and mastered from 78 rpm vinyl, and 18 of them have never before appeared in CD form.

"But what crazy sounds am I going to hear?" you may ask. Well, according to the previously quoted press release: "zamr, naa phaat piphat, gong kebyar, Northumbrian piping, periya melam, rhumba, Carpathian weddings, Rulin opera, Uilleann piping, Bollywood, dan bau, Handel, rembetika, gusle, tembang sunds, flamenco, fado, prayer, djanger, kabuki and yien pwe."

In other words, the next ten years of Timbaland sample sources.

Also, though it's not immediately forthcoming, the label will release Victrola Favorites: Artifacts From Bygone Days in December. It's a 144-page, full-color clothbound book that comes with two CDs of "Burmese guitars, Chinese Opera, Persian folk songs, Fado, hillbilly, jazz, blues, and much, much more," according to the label's website. It was compiled from the 78 and design artifact collections of Climax Golden Twins' Rob Millis and Jeffery Taylor.

Finally, Awake, My Soul-- the DVD companion to Dust-to-Digital's Sacred Harp-chronicling I Belong to This Band compilation-- will air on public television early next year. [MORE...]


Califone Hit the Road With Iron & Wine

They've already shared a band member (percussionist Ben Massarella), and with the release of The Shepherd's Dog, Iron & Wine and Califone are pretty close to sharing a sound too. So why not just complete the set and share some tour dates, right? Right.

The two bands will play a handful of shows together in the U.S. in late November and early December. For Califone, these dates come wrapped in a blanket of European dates, the next of which is tonight, November 2, in Castellón, Spain.

Also on Califone's end-of-2007 buffet plate: Esopus, ornaments, and not one but two Thrill Jockey anniversary shows. [MORE...]

A Place to Bury Strangers Add Dates to Tour

Label drama? Police intervention? A Place to Bury Strangers scoff at your puny attempts to stop their populace-pummeling. And to prove it, the band has added another sprinkling of shows to its schedule. Quite a few of 'em are at colleges.

All of the dates are in support of the band's self-titled debut LP. APTBS' next show is tonight, November 2, at Colgate in Hamilton, New York. [MORE...]

Suicide, Liquid Liquid on Downtown 81 Soundtrack
Plus: James Chance, DNA, Tuxedomoon, Lydia Lunch, Blondie's Stein

The life of Jean-Michel Basquiat, darling of New York's downtown art scene of the early 1980s, was the stuff of legend. In the nearly two decades since his death, he's been immortalized in print, on museum walls, and on film-- but Basquiat's light burned so brightly in his time, he all but starred in his own quasi-biopic back in 1981.

Downtown 81, a film loosely based on the Lower East Side art movement in which Basquiat loomed so large, stars Jean-Michel amidst a cast of characters plucked from the scene the film depicts. The film also featured quite a few bands and figures from the period, including Deborah Harry, James Chance, DNA, and Tuxedomoon. The latter three join Suicide, Liquid Liquid, Lydia Lunch, Blondie's Chris Stein, and Basquiat's own musical project Gray (which also included a young Vincent Gallo) on the soundtrack, due November 6 from Recall Records.

In conjunction with the soundtrack release, NYC's Tribeca Grand Hotel will host a Downtown 81 party on November 5, featuring a live performance by Chance. Downtown 81 producer Maripol will also be on hand to show off Polaroids from the era, while Grand National and Mark Kamin serve up DJ sets. [MORE...]

Destroyer, Black Mountain Play Scratch Records Parties
Also: Pink Mountaintops

Vancouver record store-turned-distro-and-label Scratch Records celebrates its 20th year of existing this year. Man, 1987... can you imagine a record store without any Pavement albums because Pavement albums did not exist yet?!!

Scratch's label arm has put out records by quite a few fine bands during that time, and to celebrate the two-decade milestone, several of them will perform at a series of shows going on in Vancouver this weekend and next.

Destroyer, Black Mountain, and Pink Mountaintops are among the parties' performers, who include not only artists with releases on the label but acts featuring current Scratch employees.

The first party is tomorrow, November 3, at Richard's on Richards, headlined by Black Mountain. The lineups for all three are right after the jump. [MORE...]


Oldham, Sweeney, W.K. on Baby Dee's Drag City Debut
Also: members of Current 93, Chavez, Antony and the Johnsons, Psychic TV

If the list of contributors to her Drag City debut album is any indication, Cleveland-born singer/songwriter/harpist/pianist Baby Dee has quite the address book.

The record is called Safe Inside the Day, and let's start with its producers: Matt Sweeney (Chavez, Zwan, Superwolf) and Bonnie "Prince" Billy (aka Will Oldham). The latter also played on the album, and so did a swarm of other people: Andrew W.K., James Lo (Chavez), Max Moston (Antony and the Johnsons), John Contreras (Current 93), William Breeze (Current 93, Psychic TV, Coil), Robbie Lee, and Lia Kessel (The Marina).

Drag City will release Safe Inside the Day on January 22, and Baby Dee has tour dates both European and North American to keep her busy until then. Her next show is tonight, November 2, in Aarhus, Denmark. [MORE...]

YACHT, Islands, Elverum Bring Noodles to NYC

Now that you've had a little time to digest Worried Noodles-- the star-studded musical extrapolation of the words of artist David Shrigley which finally made its way to disc late last month from Tomlab-- you may be wondering where the unique project could be heading next. One hopes you've saved a little room for another course or two, as a pair of live Worried Noodles performances will be taking place over the next few weeks.

On December 5, Islands ("special pared down line-up"), YACHT, Phil Elverum of the Microphones/Mt. Eerie and Nick Krgovich (P:ano, No Kids), Tussle, R. Stevie Moore and Roger Ferguson, Christopher Francis, Tomlab DJs, and some super-secret special guests will take the stage of New York City's Knitting Factory. They'll perform strands from Noodles and regular sets as well. Shrigley himself will be in attendance at the gig, and proceeds from the show will go to Amnesty International.

It's going down this Saturday in Berlin, too, with Dirty Projectors, YACHT, Scarlet's Well, and a DJ set from Psapp celebrating Worried Noodles at Festsaal Kreuzberg. The event also benefits Amnesty International.

All of this follows on the heels of an October 14 show in London that featured Hot Chip, Max Tundra, and 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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