Monday, December 7

Hear the Epic New Smashing Pumpkins Track: "A Song for a Son"

The first track from Billy Corgan's 44-song opus. Hear the Epic New Smashing Pumpkins Track: "A Song for a Son"

Photos by Kristin Burns

Back in September, we told you about Billy Corgan's ambitious new Smashing Pumpkins project, a 44-song album called Teargarden by Kaleidyscope, which is to trickle out online song-by-song (and eventually become a series of EPs and a box set). The first Teargarden track, called "A Song for a Son" just premiered on Spinner. Listen to it here.


Memory Tapes, Flying Lotus, El-P, HEALTH Remix Atlanta Rappers

Thanks, Adult Swim! Memory Tapes, Flying Lotus, El-P, HEALTH Remix Atlanta Rappers

For nearly a decade now, Adult Swim has brought anime and absurdist humor to stoned college kids everywhere. The Adult Swim folks have also done their share of toe-dipping into the music world, getting behind records like Danger Doom's The Mouse and the Mask and releasing their own free, downloadable mixtapes like Warm & Scratchy and Definitive Swim.

For the latest free mixtape, Adult Swim has teamed up with Beaterator, Rockstar Games' new Timbaland-backed music mixer game. The mix is called ATL RMX, and you can download it today over on the Adult Swim website. UPDATE: It's available now.


Pet Shop Boys Ready Christmas EP

Pet Shop Boys Ready Christmas EP

Listening to the famously dour, expressionless vocal from Pet Shop Boy Neil Tennant on the great 1985 single "Opportunities (Let's Make Lots of Money)", you might not peg him as the sort of guy who'd be overcome by the holiday spirit two decades later. But in the year of the Bob Dylan Christmas album, all bets are off. On December 15 (December 14 in the UK), Astralwerks (Parlophone in the UK) will release Christmas, the new EP from the British synthpop originators.

The EP will include a new version of "It Doesn't Often Snow at Christmas" "All Over the World", a song from Yes, their last album. Also included: Two versions of the Madness song "My Girl" and a medley of Coldplay's "Viva La Vida" and the Pet Shop Boys' own "Domino Dancing". We've got the tracklist below.


Sigur Rós Frontman Jónsi Reveals Debut Solo Album Details

The record, called Go, is due this March. Sigur Rós Frontman Jónsi Reveals Debut Solo Album Details

Photo by Lilja Birgisdottir

The debut solo LP from impossibly high-voiced Sigur Rós frontman Jónsi Birgisson, Go, is set to hit retail locations of all sorts on March 23 courtesy of XL. Based on the wildly symphonic new track "Boy Lilikoi" (available for download at Jónsi's site), Go does not sound like some half-assed side project. If anything, the song is more over-the-top than most of Sigur Rós's crescendo-prone oeuvre.

Indie-leaning modern classical innovator Nico Muhly (Björk, Grizzly Bear) arranged the whole record, and his flourishing touch can be heard on "Boy Lilikoi", along with several teasing snippets also available at Jónsi's web HQ.

The nine-song LP was co-produced by Jónsi, his Riceboy Sleeps partner Alex Somers, and Peter Katis (the National, Interpol), and recorded in Iceland and Connecticut. Finnish percussionist (and Múm member) Samuli Kosminen also contributed to the album. And while Jónsi is known for singing in Icelandic or his own made-up language, most of Go features the vocalist using actual English words.

A press release promises a world tour come next year. For now, you'll have to settle for the album's tracklist, which is below:


Sunday, December 6

Weezer's Rivers Cuomo Hospitalized Following Bus Accident

UPDATE: Weezer shows canceled. Weezer's Rivers Cuomo Hospitalized Following Bus Accident

Weezer frontman Rivers Cuomo was hospitalized after a bus accident in upstate New York this morning, CNN reports.

Weezer were on their way from a show in Toronto last night to one in Boston tomorrow night when the bus carrying Cuomo, his wife and daughter, and two other passengers hit a patch of ice on the New York State Thruway. According to CNN, "The driver said the back end of the bus slid on ice, then went into the median and hit some reflective posts before crossing back over the highway, going over the guardrail and landing in a ditch."

Cuomo "complained of rib pain" and was taken to St. Mary's Hospital in Amsterdam, New York. According to the Albany Times-Union, band assistant Sarah Kim was taken to the hospital as well, due to back pain.

UPDATE: Weezer's webmaster, Karl Koch, has posted an update on Weezer's website, detailing exactly what happened. The full text of his update is after the jump.

The rest of Weezer's December tour dates have been canceled. Weezer's updated itinerary can also be found below.


Saturday, December 5

R.I.P. Jack Rose

R.I.P. Jack Rose

Photo by A. Evans

Guitarist Jack Rose died today at the age of 38. The cause of death was a heart attack, the Philadelphia Daily News reports.

Rose was a versatile player with an experimental bent, known for his work both with his group Pelt and as a solo artist. Following in the footsteps of left-field steel string guitar pioneers like John Fahey and Robbie Basho, Rose incorporated elements of drone, ragtime, folk, blues, and Eastern classical into his playing. He was featured on the landmark Golden Apples of the Sun, the Devendra Banhart-curated 2004 compilation that served as a high-water mark for freak-folk. Rose released albums on such labels as Three Lobed and VHF. He had recently signed to Thrill Jockey, who are set to release his tenth solo album, Luck in the Valley, on February 23, 2010.

In an email newsletter sent out today, Cory Rayborn of Three Lobed wrote, "Jack was a warm, caring person and was always a pleasure to be around. His larger than life spirit will truly, truly be missed even moreso than his inspired musical ability. Our deepest sorrow goes out to his wife."

Arthur magazine has compiled a video tribute to Jack Rose over on their website. We've also embedded the videos below.


Friday, December 4

Echo Chamber: MGMT

Echo Chamber: MGMT

"We were on board to do this track for Jay-Z's last album. We talked to Jay-Z on the phone, and he was telling us that he wanted us to do whatever we wanted. We came up with a beat and a chorus, and it ended up that they didn't use it. Maybe we can do something in the future."

-- MGMT's Andrew VanWyngarden, explaining his band's absence from The Blueprint 3 and, at the same time, describing the phone conversation we all wish we could have with Jay-Z. (via Entertainment Weekly)

Posted by Tom Breihan on December 4, 2009 at 4:50 p.m.

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Hear a New Weezer Remix

Hear a New Weezer Remix

In its original form, Weezer's single "(If You're Wondering If I Want You To) I Want You To" is straight-up, precision-tooled power pop. But frequent remixer Doctor Rosen Rosen has turned it into a weirdly gleaming assemblage of expensive synths and opera-singer hoots, the sort of thing that could easy segue into Lady Gaga in a DJ set. If Weezer decide to travel even deeper into teenpop on their next album, they might want to holler at this guy. Check it out below.


Hear New Vampire Weekend: "California English Pt. 2"

The left-field B-side to the "Cousins" single. Hear New Vampire Weekend: "California English Pt. 2"

Things you don't expect to hear on a Vampire Weekend song: Gunshot sounds, blissed-out Animal Collective synths, Kid Cudi telling you to suck his balls. And yet two of the three appear on "California English Pt. 2", the dizzily weird B-side to the band's "Cousins" single. (The single is out now digitally, and due on vinyl on December 15.) You should probably stop whatever you're doing and listen to it right now. Check it out below, via Pretty Much Amazing and We All Want Someone to Shout For.

A song called just plain "California English" will appear on Contra, the band's forthcoming sophomore album, due January 12 from XL. Maybe we'll get to hear a more straightforward version of this song then.


Fucked Up's Pink Eyes Talks All-Star Benefit Single, Other New Projects

"It actually might turn out to be the greatest song ever recorded by anyone." Fucked Up's Pink Eyes Talks All-Star Benefit Single, Other New Projects

Photo by Rez Avissar

Torontonian ragers Fucked Up may be in the midst of a nostalgic stretch (playing last year's monsterpiece The Chemistry of Common Life at a Brooklyn show, prepping a compilation of old singles, Couple Tracks), but they're also constantly looking to the future. And that future is always busy.

Early next year, Fucked Up will hit the road with Matador labelmate Kurt Vile. And they've got a slew of new music in the works, including split releases with punk vets NOFX and garage rockers King Khan and BBQ, as well as a collaboration with GZA from the Wu-Tang Clan.

But the most ambitious Fucked Up project in the works is an all-star indie rock cover of the classically cheesy 1984 holiday jam "Do They Know It's Christmas?". The single, set to be released on iTunes any day now and vinyl early next year, will serve as a benefit for several organizations that support the search for missing and murdered indigenous women in Canada-- a perfect fusion of tongue-in-cheek concept and serious cause. Contributors to the Fucked Up "Do They Know It's Christmas?" include members of Vampire Weekend, TV on the Radio, Broken Social Scene, and No Age.

We recently spoke with frontman Damian Abraham, aka Pink Eyes, as the band was gearing up for a show in Austria.


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