Posts Tagged ‘Turbo Fruits’

Wednesday, March 31st, 2010

SxSW 2010 Night Three A/V

Photo By Frank YangFrank YangFull writeup of the evening over here.

Billy Bragg
– British agit-folk icon whose last album was 2007’s Mr. Love & Justice is presently busy with his Jail Guitar Doors program and tells Spinner that there may still be more Mermaid Avenue records to come.
Photos: Billy Bragg @ MWTX North Stage – March 19, 2010
MP3: Billy Bragg – “I Keep Faith”
MP3: Billy Bragg – “Take Down The Union Jack”
MP3: Billy Bragg – “Must I Paint You A Picture?”
MP3: Billy Bragg – “Valentine’s Day Is Over” (live)
Video: Billy Bragg – “NPWA”
Video: Billy Bragg – “The Boy Done Good”
Video: Billy Bragg – “Sexuality”
Video: Billy Bragg – “Waiting For The Great Leap Forward”
Video: Billy Bragg – “You Woke Up My Neighbourhood”
Video: Billy Bragg – “Levi Stubbs’ Tears”
MySpace: Billy Bragg

Frightened Rabbit
– See notes from day one.
Photos: Frightened Rabbit @ NWTX North Stage – March 19, 2010

Man Man
– Philadelphia bizarro-rock troupe bring last year’s Rabbit Habits to Lee’s Palace on May 9.
Photos: Man Man @ NWTX North Stage – March 19, 2010
MP3: Man Man – “Top Drawer”
MP3: Man Man – “Black Mission Goggles”
MP3: Man Man – “10 Lb Moustache”
Video: Man Man – “Rabbit Habits”

Turbo Fruits
– Former members of Be Your Own Pet released their debut full-length Echo Kid in late 2009. Spinner has an interview.
Photos: Turbo Fruits @ The Music Gym – March 19, 2010
MP3: Turbo Fruits – “Mama’s Mad Cos I Fried My Brain”
MP3: Turbo Fruits – “Pocket Full Of Thistles”
Video: Turbo Fruits – “Volcano”
MySpace: Turbo Fruits

Real Estate
– New Jersey quartet have just released their self-titled debut, full of shimmering guitar pop. Nashville Scene and Spinner talk to frontman Martin Courtney.
Photos: Real Estate @ Klub Krucial – March 19, 2010
MP3: Real Estate – “Black Lake”
MP3: Real Estate – “Beach Comber”

Memory Tapes
– Dayve Hawk, armed with guitar and laptop, released his debut Seek Magic, filled with electro-gaze you can dance to. Spinner has an interview.
Photos: Memory Tapes @ Klub Krucial – March 19, 2010
MP3: Memory Tapes – “Bicycle”
MP3: Memory Tapes – “Graphics Remodel Edit”
MySpace: Memory Tapes

The Drums
– New Yorkers easily mistaken for Brits sing songs about California while wishing it were still the ’80s. Featured in stories at The Daily Record, X-Media and The Times.
Photos: The Drums @ Latitude 30 – March 19, 2010
Video: The Drums – “Let’s Go Surfing”
Video: The Drums – “Best Friend”
Video: The Drums – “I Felt Stupid”
MySpace: The Drums

Monday, March 22nd, 2010

SxSW 2010 Night Three

Man Man, Memory Tapes, The Drums and more at SxSW

Photo By Frank YangFrank YangSo where were we? Oh, yes, a somewhat artificial break between the afternoon and the evening. Immediately after leaving the Johnny Flynn hotel gig on Friday evening, I headed out towards the east side of downtown to the Mess With Texas grounds (which the day before had been the Eastbound & Found grounds) for what, of all the unofficial day parties running alongside/against SxSW, had become one of the largest and most must-see.

The three main stage closing acts for day one of the mini-fest included two very familiar faces and one that I hadn’t seen or heard before, but wouldn’t be forgetting. It was an interesting thing to be walking along 6th St and hear quietly at first, but increasingly loudly, the voice of one Billy Bragg exhorting the crowds to call their representatives and urge them to support the impending health care bill and resist giving in to cynicism. Not quite the usual, “hey Austin how ya doing!” you usually hear at these sorts of things, but it was exciting to hear the crowds responding positively to his message. I’d obviously heard him play (and preach) in Canada on numerous occasions, but to witness it in Texas – even in liberal Austin – was pretty cool. The portion of his set I caught was pretty standard Billy but tracks like “NPWA” and “I Keep Faith” tied in pretty well with his message of the evening and set closer “A New England” will always be welcome, anytime, anywhere.

I had said I felt lucky to have seen Frightened Rabbit play a somewhat stripped down set on Wednesday afternoon, and I do/did, but I was just as happy that they had sorted out their equipment issues in time for their next-to-closing set at Mess With Texas, because the rocking Rabbit is also pretty great. Fully plugged in and ready to give the crowd what for, Frightened Rabbit played a similar set to the one at the Paste party, split fairly evenly between the new The Winter Of Mixed Drinks and the older Midnight Organ Fight, all delivered with a fervor that it seemed Scott Hutchison was so pleased to have his electric guitar working again that he was going to strangle it in gratitude. Hearing Frightened Rabbit writ large, my reservations about the extroverted nature of Mixed Drinks is decidedly lessened, and I’m glad I was able to see them again in Austin so I don’t feel any regrets about missing their May 4 show in Toronto at the Opera House.

I am at a loss for how to describe Philadelphia’s Man Man. I’d never seen them before Friday night, and now that I think about it, those I know who are fans have never been able to describe them either beyond, “they’re fun to photograph”. Which they certainly are. The five-piece (or was it six?) are like a circus sideshow making their own soundtrack to wacky-ass antics AND shenanigans, all lurching rhythms, gutteral vocals and insane musicianship on keys and percussion and instruments that may or may not be proper instruments. It’s really something you have to see, and while I don’t know that I’d ever listen to their recorded works, the live spectacle is something to behold. I hadn’t really understood how they were large enough to headline something as large as MWTX (not major festival large but still reasonably large) but they did indeed pack the parking lot with people clearly in the know and stoked to be seeing them again. It was… something to behold.

By rights, that should have been the end of the night since chances of seeing anything top their show were slim to none, but it was still early. En route back to downtown, I got a text saying I needed to be at the Music Gym for Turbo Fruits and I was just across the street and with nothing better to do. So I went. I’d never had an interest in seeing said Nashville trio before, assuming they’d be all snotty and raggedy punk and while they certainly weren’t especially tight or polite, they were more melodic and enjoyable than expected. And points for moving their mics into the crowd with the second song to be closer to their people, though I did feel bad for the drummer stuck way back on the stage.

After a failed attempt to see Gemma Ray and instead catching part of a solo set from the guy from Cutting Crew – the part with “I Just Died In Your Arms Tonight” so not a total loss – I was surprised to see no lineup for Klub Krucial, where a couple acts I thought would be much hotter draws were playing. New Jersey’s Real Estate impressed with a set of jangly pop that was simultaneously peppy and laid back and certainly put them on my list of bands to check out further.

I didn’t need to put Memory Tapes on any such list since I’d been enjoying his Seek Magic mini-album for a few months now. Where the surprise came with them is how entertaining they were live. While much of the beats and arrangements were pre-recorded backing tracks, Dayve Hawk augmented them with a live drummer and his guitar playing had some serious big rock attitude to it. Whereas the recorded works have a hazy, daydreamy feel to them, live they were much more aggressive and dancey. And there was dancing. It may have even involved me. Maybe.

The final stop of the night was Latitude 30 for The Drums, whom besides hearing people talk about them, I hadn’t actually heard before. And if they weren’t playing en route to my hotel with room still available in the venue – at least when I got there, such was not the case around 10 minutes later – that’d have remained the case. In addition to the buzz, I was curious how and why an American band – they hail from New York – was closing out one of the nights at the SxSW British Music Embassy. Until they actually took the stage, at which point it became clear that Americans they may be, but their musical hearts lay squarely in the UK. The quartet, whose singer Jonathan Pierce has clearly spent many hours in front of the mirror practicing his arch and preening frontman poses, struck the right balance of dancey beats and jangly hooks to win the hearts of Anglophiles everywhere, or at least in the room. I wasn’t as swoony as some of those bearing witness, but I could definitely see the appeal – it held my attention for almost their entire set which, considering how wiped I was, was no mean feat.

And… scene.

Tuesday, January 5th, 2010


Slow news day pushes Vampire Weekend tour announcement to top of post

Photo By Soren Solkaer StarbirdSoren Solkaer StarbirdActually that’s not entirely true – it was indeed slow yesterday morning when I decided to lead with the Vampire Weekend tour info despite my general indifference and/or distaste for the band, but since then a number of notable concert announcements have shown up in the ol’ inbox and RSS feed. But since the release of their second album Contra next week is, arguably, the first big album release of 2010 – and I already had the picture cropped and uploaded – I’ll run with it.

And so here’s the 411 – the North American tour kicks off March 14 in Edmonton (!) and takes a leisurely route eastwards, eventually stopping in Toronto at the Sound Academy on March 30. That’s right, Vampire Weekend are playing a 3000-capacity venue, and they’re charging $27.50 a head to see them do so. Tickets go on sale this Friday.

Considerably less costly is the opportunity to hear their new record a week before release. It’s currently streaming on their MySpace and additionally, PitchforkTV has a “Juan’s Basement” live video session to watch. Also worth noting is that folks who buy Contra at their local indie store rather than, say, Wal-Mart, will receive the Vampire Weekend Meets Toy Selectah bonus CD for their conscientious consumerism. Details on the what and where here. Spinner talks to bassist Chris Baio about the new record.

MP3: Vampire Weekend – “Horchata”
Video: Vampire Weekend – “Cousins”
Stream: Vampire Weekend / Contra

Certainly the most intriguing announcement of the day yesterday was that Charlotte Gainsbourg would be coming to town. Gainsbourg has many claims to fame – daughter of Serge, actress (The Science Of Sleep, Antichrist), singer – and it’s as the last of these that she will be at the Phoenix on January 29. Her third album IRM, out January 26, was produced by Beck, who also duets on the first single, and it’s his band that will be backing Gainsbourg on this tour. Tickets for the Toronto show are $21.50.

Video: Charlotte Gainsbourg – “Heaven Can Wait”

Fans of the now-defunct Be Your Own Pet may be interested to know that a couple of spin-off acts (who are not Jemina Pearl) are hitting the road this Winter. JEFF The Brotherhood, featuring former BYOP guitar and drums Jake and Jamin Orrall, are out and about including a January 29 date at Sneaky Dee’s in support of their record Heavy Days while Turbo Fruits, which is led by the BYOP guitarist and drummer at the time of their dissolution, are hitting the road in support of Echo Kid with Surfer Blood and will be at Sneaky Dee’s on March 6.

MP3: Turbo Fruits – “Pocket Full Of Thistles”
MP3: Surfer Blood – “Swim”
Video: JEFF The Brotherhood – “The Tropics”
Video: JEFF The Brotherhood – “Bone Jam”

Fucked Up have a date at the Opera House on February 26 with Kurt Vile as support, as part of a North(eastern) America tour. Fucked Up’s new singles comp Couple Tracks is out January 26.

MP3: Fucked Up – “Neat Parts”
MP3: Fucked Up – “No Epiphany”
MP3: Kurt Vile – “Overnite Religion”
MP3: Kurt Vile – “Hunchback”

Cuff The Duke have a date at Lee’s Palace on March 20.

Video: Cuff The Duke – “Promises”

Nada Surf have yet to reveal full details of their forthcoming covers album but they have put a demo version of their redo of Depeche Mode’s “Enjoy The Silence” on their MySpace and announced some live dates, including a March 29 date at Lee’s Palace – tickets $16.50. Update: Some details revealed – if i had a hi-fi will initially be available only at shows starting March 25. Regular retail info still to come.

MP3: Nada Surf – “See These Bones”

Philadelphia dream-pop outfit A Sunny Day In Glasgow will make their Toronto debut on April 2 at the Garrison; tickets $10. I didn’t take to their 2007 debut Scribble Mural Comic Journal nearly as much as I thought I would/should, but am willing to give last year’s follow-up Ashes Grammar a shot, especially with a live date in the offing. Anyone care to comment on the live Sunny Day In Glasgow experience? I would imagine that reproducing the cut-and-paste sonics of the records verbatim isn’t on the agenda. There’s interviews with the band circa their US tour last month at The Village Voice, Express Night Out and Washington City Paper.

MP3: A Sunny Day In Glasgow – “Ashes Grammar/Ashes Math”
MP3: A Sunny Day In Glasgow – “Best Summer Ever”
MP3: A Sunny Day In Glasgow – “Watery (Drowning is Just Another Word for Being Buried Alive Under Water)”

Toronto’s Japandroids and Sweden’s Love Is All will make the Horseshoe loud and sweaty on April 3. Tickets $12.

MP3: Japandroids – “Young Hearts Spark Fire”
MP3: Love Is All – “Wishing Well”

With next Tuesday’s Mod Club show well and truly sold out, Owen Pallett has scheduled another hometown date for April 8 at the Queen Elizabeth Theatre – tickets $25. XTRA and Reuters have interviews with Pallett, whose Heartland is out next week.

And though there’s no Toronto date to announce right now, Pitchfork’s list of Joanna Newsom tour dates has a very conspicuous three-day gap between Grand Rapids and Montreal. It does not take three days to drive from Grand Rapids to Montreal.