Wednesday, May 25th, 2005

High Fidelity Vs. Guy Fidelity

A quick check-in with Austin’s American Analog Set points us to fansite AmAnSetNews, which the band rightfully points out puts their own website to shame. There’s up-to-date news, video, audio, photos (including mine from their Horseshoe show a couple years back), guitar tabs, etc. Every band should be so fortunate to have such loyal fans.

During one of their many sets at SxSW this year, the band said they hoped the new record would be out by the Fall. The album is done but they’re label shopping, as their last home Tiger Style folded last year. Promise Of Love was one of my favourite records of 2003, so I hope someone has the good sense to release it and give it the push it deserves. A new collection of AmAnSet’s gently lush music is always welcome.

Not to be outdone on the downloads front, the official AmAnSet site has a couple of live tracks for you to grab. The first is a Magnetic Fields cover recorded at a 2001 show at the Horseshoe in Toronto, the second is a Her Space Holiday cover recorded in Dublin in 2002.

MP3: The American Analog Set – “Dreaming Moon”

MP3: The American Analog Set – “Keystrokes”

Paste catches up with Stephen Malkmus who released his third solo disc Face The Truth yesterday.

Also out yesterday – Sleater-Kinney’s The Woods. CMJ and Aversion have interviews with Janet Weiss and Carrie Brownstein, respectively, about their new album (Aversion link from For The Records). If you haven’t already, check out the SK blog, wherein Weiss promises they’ll “lie like crazy”. Pitchfork gives the new record a 9.0 – in fact, (almost) all reviews have been glowing. Gary points out that first single “Entertain” is a free download from the iTunes Canada store right now – it’s also available free from SubPop so you don’t have to deal with that nasty Apple aftertaste.

The Globe & Mail looks at the giant shadow that New Order casts across the current pop music landscape. Via Largehearted Boy. And always one to offer advice to the next generation, Bernard Sumner tells Paste five telltale signs that your studio is haunted.

Aqualung will be at the Mod Club July 4, tickets $13.50.

All that this says to me is that John Squire needs to make rent. Truly, I pray it doesn’t happen – my spider-sense says this would be a farce. Enough with the cash-in reunions, already! Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to go take out a small loan for my Dinosaur Jr tickets.

So I abandoned my poking stick idea for a stereo remote control and just went out and bought a new stereo instead. In keeping with my love of all things butt ugly and NAD, I went with an NAD C320BEE integrated. The reviews for this sucker have been excellent all around and interestingly, the salespeople at both stores I went to dissuaded me from going for it’s bigger brother, the NAD C352. Since I don’t really even need the 50W per channel the 320BEE offers, the 80W per channel C352 would have been overkill.

I hadn’t really expected the new amp to sound that much better than the old 302 – they’re based off the same basic 3020 circuit design – but I’ve been very pleasantly surprised by how much better it sounds. There’s some serious synergy going on between it, my speakers (Paradign Studio Reference 20v3s) and CD player (NAD C521BEE). Music has more depth and detail to the sound and the soundstage and imaging is much improved. The 302 is now doing duty powering my smaller bedroom stereo. The only downside to the C320BEE is that it doesn’t have a phono preamp, which will be a bit of a problem since I intend to liberate my parents’ old record player from home and integrate it into my audio geek system. I hope the thing still works – I suspect the cartridge will need to be replaced. Actually, I should probably find out what it is and if it’s worth liberating, or if I should just keep an eye out for a more worthy used model. But I digress – new amp is lovely, having a remote control is lovely. I can’t believe I went 8 years without one. Now I don’t have to get up EVER.

np – Sparklehorse / Good Morning Spider

By : Frank Yang at 8:36 am
Category: Uncategorized
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  1. Gary Campbell says:

    You might want to mention that Sleater-Kinney’s song "Entertain" is the free download this week on the Canadian iTunes Music Store. FREE, I tell ya.


  2. tim says:

    AAS are the shit. Love, love, love them. Such a unique sound. Awesome for road music. For a label I’m thinking Thrill Jockey, Matador, or Merge.

  3. PG says:

    where’d you end up purchasing the NAD?

  4. Frank says:

    list on the C320BEE was $500 CDN. Bay Bloor would knock it down to $465 but Great Metropolitan Sound up at Yonge/Eglinton would go as low as $450, which is what I was shooting for. They were nicer than BBR, too.

  5. John says:

    Congrats on the new purchase, and also for never having to get up, now if you can find a trained monkey you will be truly set for life.

  6. spencer says:

    thanks for spotting the malkmus interview.

    very good indeed.

  7. cinchel says:

    may i recommed the grado gold for a cart replacement if you decide to steal your folks turntable..for the price the sound cant be beat…and if you need to buy a whole turntable i really like my project 1.2 (which i guess is now called the debut..http://…/)