It’s Friday, and we’re back with another installment of our regular roundup of downloadable MP3 goodness from around the web. This week, we get very excited about a taste of the new Swans album, even if it’s only a truncated edit of a truly epic-sounding track. There’s also a non-album Dirty Projectors track, Thurston Moore’s new band, new work from Crystal Castles and The Mountain Goats, suitably whacked-out hip hop from Flying Lotus and Raekwon, and a suite of Scott Walker remixes. In other words, there’s plenty of interesting sounds awaiting you after the jump, and since they won’t cost a penny or land you an RIAA lawsuit, as your attorneys we advise you to start downloading immediately. … Read More
Held for the past three years in a remote, ramshackle Catskills summer resort called Kutsher’s, America’s own version of the British All Tomorrow’s Parties festival was a somewhat different affair in 2011. Although the musical line-up was just as incredible as ever — Portishead curated and headlined two of the three nights, and Jeff Mangum also performed twice (read more about that here) — the event found a new home in Asbury Park, the New Jersey beach town that’s most famous for launching Bruce Springsteen’s career.
We can’t say we didn’t miss the intimacy and seclusion of Kutsher’s, but the new location proved to be a fantastic alternative nonetheless. Along with three days of excellent and challenging music that catered to the crate-digger set, we bowled, strolled the boardwalk, sampled the offerings of a remarkable (and fully playable) pinball museum, walked on the beach, played mini golf, and warmed ourselves in front of a bonfire. Most importantly, we reconnected with a deep-seated love of music that’s constantly tested by the Internet’s exhausting and trivializing hype cycle. A gallery of highlights from the festival — including Portishead, Public Enemy, Bonnie ‘Prince’ Billy, Cults, Deerhoof, Swans, Shepard Fairey, and many more — is after the jump. … Read More
In recent years, reunions of well-regarded bands have become commonplace, occupying regular paths on the touring circuit and inspiring music-blog speculations as to which underground act will be the next to regroup. Rarer are the reunions, like Mission of Burma’s, that yield impressive, new creative output. At their best, albums made after a long absence can be essential: a restatement of what made an artist great, or a revelation of something fresh and unexpected.
What follows is a look at ten of the year’s most notable musical comebacks: some from recently reunited bands, others from long-dormant projects that never really went away, and a few from musicians bringing new outlets into the spotlight. They range from minimalist electronic music to classically-inspired post-rock, from autobiographical ruminations to three-chord punk. … Read More
Summertime means weird street smells, rooftop barbecues, and the inevitable Sonic Youth tour. And if the past is any guide, you can expect to see some of the most interesting opening bands on the circuit. This year’s acts include The Entrance Band, Awesome Color, Endless Boogie (DC only) and Kurt Vile (Philadelphia only). Not sure you care? We’ve got 15 big reasons why you… Read More