Thursday, June 30th, 2005

The Kindness Of Strangers

Cheers to Toronto’s own Arts & Crafts doing their part to strengthen relations with our neighbours to the south by giving Austin’s American Analog Set a much-deserved record deal. According to Pitchfork, A&C will release AmAnSet’s Set Free in North America on September 20 (Morr Music handles distro duties in Europe and release the album there on September 6). I hope this means that the Set will have good reason to come up north and play some shows – like picking up their paycheques. The current plan has the band traversing the globe in support of the new album through the Fall, with east coast North American dates in Novermber/December. Photo from Twinhorse.

You can read an interview with AmAnSet mainman Andrew Kenney from Comes With A Smile here, and check out their tour journal for logs of their recent jaunt to Taiwan. And here’s a track from the new album:

MP3: The American Analog Set – “Immaculate Heart i”

Death Cab For Cutie’s major-label debut Plans has been bumped up a couple weeks from its original September 20 street date and will now be out on August 30. Pitchfork has details.

Chart scored some time with Keren Ann between her Jazz Festival and Olympic Island shows in Toronto this past weekend.

Some shows – A couple of UK buzz bands are coming to town: Manchester’s Nine Black Alps are at the El Mocambo on July 14, and Clash devotees Hard-Fi are at the Mod Club on July 21. Sweden’s Shout Out Louds continue to tour their debut album Howl Howl Gaff Gaff with a headlining show at Lee’s Palace on August 4. Chicago’s Redwalls support. And Neva Dinova have cancelled their July 18 show at the Horseshoe in favour of opening up for Jason Lowenstein at Lee’s Palace on the 19th. That Nine Black Alps gig is going on my calendar – I got one of their 7″s a while back, and now that I can listen to it (see below), it’s pretty damn good. Check out their MySpace for samples.

The upcoming week in shows at Torontoist, courtesy of me.

Google Earth freaks me out with its awesomeness. I zoomed right in on my parents’ house and could see the deck and the new cobblestone driveway. And their disapproving looks. Sigh. Yes mom, I’ll do the dishes.

Oh, and speaking of analog, my vinyl journey appears over. I scored a really really good deal on a used Rega Planar 2 turntable and it arrived yesterday. It’s maybe 25 years old but is in immaculate shape. It took me a little bit to get the tonearm set up properly (assuming I’ve done it properly) but it works and sounds great – and most importantly, the Saturday Looks Good To Me LP doesn’t skip! Huzzah. So now I’ll be doubly easy to find – if I’m not rooting through the used CD bins, I’ll be digging through old vinyl (or maybe I should just buy this guy’s collection). Sweetness. But it’s weird… after long last, my stereo setup is done. Finis. At least until my income goes up an order of magnitude, anyway. But what am I supposed to do now… LISTEN to music? What fun is that?

np – British Sea Power / Open Season

By : Frank Yang at 8:28 am
Category: Uncategorized
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  1. Ninja says:

    <i>"But what am I supposed to do now…."</i>

    set up an urban grow op. plants love soothing tunes.

  2. angryrobot says:

    Welcome to the world of vinyl. At one point, I was consdiering getting rid of my turntable; i have a vintage Luxman with an SME arm. But them I got into techno and had to keep it to listen to Kompakt 12"s and such. Still, I’m generally lazy about playing my vinyl. Plus, the turntable needs some work. I can’t get the speed to calibrate, so I guess it needs new belts or rollers or something.

    Interesting the AAS is being handled by Morr. I saw them play hear in Austin once and wasn’t too impressed, although people keep insisting I should like them.

  3. angryrobot says:

    Okay, I just listened to that new AAS track and it’s not doing much for me. It has that post-rock jam band sound I don’t really get into. I guess I hoped they might incorporate some electronics after that Updates remix EP they released. But then they’d have to go and change their name…

  4. lucaswiththelidoff says:

    I caught the last few songs from the Shout Out Loud’s when they opened for the Futureheads at Lee’s a few months back. I thought they seemed pretty good. Might be worth checking out.

  5. travis says:

    that guys 45 collection is amazing.

  6. bradley says:

    Glad the SLGTM record is of some use now!

  7. Frank says:

    AmAnSet is an acquired taste – I have to be in the proper mindset to appreciate it, but when I am it’s just great. They’re certainly unique, anyway, and believe it or not they put on a terrific live show. Not jump-on-the-monitors, smash-the-equipment rock spectacle great, but just mesmerizing. I’m happy that a local label like Arts & Crafts is helping get their music out. And Morr is a very interesting choice for Europe – they will certainly stick out on their roster.

  8. sunny says:

    I was disappointed when I couldn’t download google earth a few days ago because they stopped downloads of it. Can I get the software from you somehow?