Yo La Tengo’s woozily captivatating new studio album ‘There’s a Riot Going On’ is released worldwide today. This new record has been hailed by many as the band performing at their best – moving between sonic pastures equally familiar and unfamiliar to anyone who has kept up with them over their dazzling career
This year marks the 25th anniversary of Liz Phair’s landmark debut Exile in Guyville. On May 4th Matador will release a comprehensive box set: 7 LPs or 3 CDs cataloging the Guyville era in an edition of 1900, including the first official restored audio of all three 1991 Girly-Sound tapes. The tapes were meticulously restored from original copies of the cassettes, traded from hand to hand at the time, by Dave Cooley at Elysian Masters. Also available on double vinyl and regular CD for the first time in years: the original Exile in Guyville, remastered by Emily Lazar at The Lodge.
Buyers have the option of purchasing the remastered Exile in Guyville on 2xLP / CD or purchase the box set which includes Exile in Guyville as well as the Girly-Sound tapes Yo Yo Buddy Yup Yup Word To Ya Mutha, Girls! Girls! Girls! and Sooty. The box set also includes a book featuring essays by Ann Powers (excerpted below), Liz Phair, and an extensive oral history of Phair’s collaborators compiled by Jason Cohen. The vinyl edition of the book also includes never before seen photos, artwork, and ephemera.
Both sets will also be available via all digital retailers and streaming services on release date.
If a 7 LP set is not enough (and when is it ever, really) the 3 Girly-Sound tapes, restored by Dave Cooley at Elysian Masters, will be released as replica cassettes in a limited edition of 345 copies. The cassettes will be available as a premium exclusive for those ordering the box set on vinyl or CD through the Matador webstore.
An excerpt from TALKING BACK IN GUYVILLE by Ann Powers
Back in the 1990s, when everybody in a certain corner of the punk scene was reading feminist theory and making mixtapes, people used to go on about “speech acts.” You might wonder, what the hell is a speech act? How is it different than plain old speech? Every time you open your mouth, you’re spraying out your point of view like viral spit. Pointing this out seems a little redundant.
Yet people can easily forget that their words don’t just fall on empty air; they hit people and have the power to infect. “It was nothing,” a guy says, after he’s told a woman her ass looks good in those jeans, or she might hurt herself if she carries something heavy, or it’s kind of a shock that she’s so good at playing guitar. One thing feminists do is point out that the little jokes men make, the condescending asides, even the well-meaning compliments (you’re so pretty, little girl) are epidemic. They keep women an invisible quarantine, away from their own subjectivity, away from power. Or, as Liz Phair says in one of the songs on her immortal Exile in Guyville, “When you said I wasn’t worth talking to, I had to take your word on that.”
A lot of dudes had said a lot of things to Liz Phair by the time she was 23. After college and a year of fucking around in San Francisco, she was back in her parents’ house in the Illinois suburbs, semi-secretly writing and recording songs on a 4-track. She was also running with some guys who loved to tell her how much they knew about rock and roll and what it took to be a real musician. They tended to be startled when they discovered her ambition. When she gave her tapes to a couple of them, they recognized that she was brilliant, but by the time she got a record deal with a cool indie label, many were wondering how and why. “Guyville is wrapped up in how the songs were written and in the way it was created and came about: It’s that girl, that girl having people say you can’t do this, you aren’t good enough to do this, you don’t know what you are doing,” Phair told the journalist Jessica Hopper in a 2013 oral history of her absolutely brilliant, groundbreaking, stereotype-defying debut album Exile in Guyville.
To preview the release of Girly Sound to Guyville, Phair has released a track from Girly-Sound: an early version of the Guyville highlight “Divorce Song” originally heard on Yo Yo Buddy Yup Yup Word To Ya Mutha.
Liz will kick off the “Girly Sound To Guyville Tour,” performing material from the newly reissued set, this Spring with select dates across the U.S. Tickets are on sale next Friday March 23rd at 10am ET.
“Girly Sound To Guyville: The 25th Anniversary Box Set” Tracklist
Exile In Guyville
2. Help Me Mary
4. Dance Of The Seven Veils
5. Never Said
6. Soap Star Joe
7. Explain It To Me
10. Fuck and Run
11. Girls! Girls! Girls!
12. Divorce Song
15. Johnny Sunshine
18. Strange Loop
Yo Yo Buddy Yup Yup Word To Ya Mutha
1. White Babies
3. 6 Dick Pimp
4. Divorce Song
5. Go West
6. Don’t Holdyrbreath
7. Johnny Sunshine
8. Miss Lucy
9. Elvis Song
10. Dead Shark
11. One Less Thing
13. In Love w/Yself
Girls! Girls! Girls!
1. Hello Sailor
3. Fuck And Run
4. Easy Target
5. Soap Star Joe
6. Ant In Alaska
8. Polyester Bride
10. Miss Mary Mack
12. Love Song
5. Open Season
9. South Dakota
Julien Baker works hard, despite currently being on the road with label mates Belle & Sebastian for the UK stretch of the Glaswegian troupe’s tour, she’s just this morning announced plans for a stint of European shows this coming September.
Tickets go on sale Friday, March 16th at 09:00 GMT
Julien recently released a collaborative cover of a Pedro The Lion track, recorded with Manchester Orchestra, continuing her streak for engaging in thoughtful song-craft that we last got a glimpse of on last year’s ‘Turn Out The Lights’
Following King Krule’s recent U.S. tour announcement surrounding both weekends of Coachella, Molten Jets has released “King Krule: Live On The Moon,” an exclusive session featuring King Krule’s full group performing eight tracks from The OOZ. Watch the video at the newly launched website where you can also find a mysterious link to some 12″ Moon Rocks, see upcoming dates, and purchase an exclusive webstore-only baseball cap designed by Archy’s brother Jack Marshall.
Earlier today, Pitchfork Live premiered the entirety of Yo La Tengo’s set from Brooklyn’s National Sawdust last week that saw the band performing songs from the forthcoming, ‘There’s A Riot Going On’, many of them for the first time in public.
Via director Brook Linder, here’s an acoustic performance of Stephen Malkmus’ “Middle America”. The Jicks’ previously announced US tour commences June 1 ; the June 14 date at Brooklyn’s Music Hall Of Williamsburg is sold out but a second show has been added the following night (see below).
Following on from an impressive sold-out, over-subscribed, full-to-bursting debut UK show in January at The Lexington, Snail Mail has announced a short run of dates in May – playing debut shows in Belgium and Amsterdam along the way.
Tickets go on sale at 10:00 GMT on Wednesday, March 7th
Adding to the band’s relentless global routing in support of ‘Hot Thoughts’, Spoon have announced 7 summer shows with Grizzly Bear and special guest Kaitlyn Aurelia Smith, including a June 20 date at Brooklyn’s Prospect Park. $1 per ticket for these dates will go to PLUS1 in support of Everytown for Gun Safety Support Fund’s mission to prevent gun violence and build safer communities. Tickets go on sale Friday, March 9 at 10am eastern — links and new gigs in bold below.
Just another elbow in the ribs reminding you that Lucy Dacus’ incredible 2nd album, ‘Historian’, is available today at the planet’s best record shops and via the streaming or download platform of your choice. Dacus’ show tonight at Brooklyn’s Music Hall Of Williamsburg is sold out, and while that’s certainly frustrating for those who snoozed on tickets, she’ll be back in the region before long. AND THERE’S OTHER REGIONS (allegedly).
Copenhagen’s Iceage — Elias Bender Rønnenfelt (vocals, lyrics), Jakob Tvilling Pless (bass), Dan Kjær Nielsen (drums), and Johan Wieth (guitar) — will release their fourth album, ‘Beyondless’, on May 4th. After returning last month with ‘Catch It’, their first new material since 2013’s ‘Plowing Into The Field of Love’, Iceage now share Beyondless’s “Pain Killer”, featuring Sky Ferreira (the first guest vocalist to ever be featured on an Iceage song). Additionally, the band is announcing March residencies in New York and Los Angeles and dates in Japan in April, with their previously announced European and North American tours to follow in May and June.
The album was produced by the band with Nis Bysted, and recorded all-analog by Mattias Glavå at Kungsten Studios in Göteborg, Sweden, and mixed by Randall Dunn at Avast Studios in Seattle. The album was played entirely by Iceage with additional performances by Nils Gröndhal (violin), horns by Kasper Tranberg (trumpet), Lars Greve (saxophones) and Morten Jessen (trombone).
I can totally imagine myself as a kid lying in my closed-door room in the dark, listening to this band and getting what I need, the way a band can make a person feel seen and bring confidence, sometimes even represent an ideal. Or maybe I’m already all defiant and self-certain, and I identify with Iceage because they are too, and they’re who I want to represent me in music. It’s a weird combination of qualities that a rock and roll band and their recordings presents to their young crowd, imparts to them. The music being pure emotion, the strong emotions of youth—anger, sadness, contempt, longing—as well as energy and sex, and the band’s demonstration that it gracefully owns and provides those things, consoling their followers in all the confusion.
What is it that Iceage in particular brings? A large number of extraordinary things. (Poetry! But more about that later.) The band members were childhood friends, which is always good news. They’re like a small urban gang, faithful to each other, suspicious of outsiders (of which music journalists like me are the most suspect examples). At the same time, they seem mature and competent, which is almost too much to hope for. They not only play and compose well, but the production of their records, from the very beginning, and at the music’s most chaotic, is impeccable. Their presentation is as hardcore anarchic as any, but much better played, mixed, and recorded than most.
And then there’s the poetry and the intelligence. The members of Iceage are not only smart but hyper literate. Interviews with E. Rønnenfelt, the lead singer and lyricist of the band, find him mentioning Carson McCullers, The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter; Georges Bataille, Story of the Eye; Peter Shaffer’s Equus; Mishima, The Sailor Who Fell from Grace with the Sea; Genet’s Thief’s Journal and Miracle of the Rose; The Torture Garden by Octave Mirbeau; Henry Miller on Writing; and James Agee’s A Death in the Family, and that’s in a total of four interviews. It’s not that he flaunts it; he’s simply honest and naturally acknowledges it.
The lyrics of Iceage songs have the most sophisticated vocabulary I can remember finding in rock music. Here’s a favorite example, from “Pain Killer” on the new album:
“Praying at the altar of your legs and feet /Your saliva is a drug so bittersweet / I’ll arrogate what’s there to take. In an evanescent embrace.”
…“Arrogate”??? I half know the word, but I had to look it up to be certain. It means “to claim or seize without justification.” It’s funny because its Latin root also underlies the word “arrogant,” which one might be tempted to apply to Rønnenfelt for the contempt he shows for people who try to understand him. But I sympathize. It is extremely annoying to be characterized by other people. And the shading of meaning of the word “arrogate” brings a subtlety to those lyrics of his that “take” or “seize” or “claim” wouldn’t. Frankly, though, what I really like about those lines is the concept of praying to his lover’s feet. That’s good. It makes me think of a similar instance in another poet, Charles Baudelaire, who wrote in his “Hymn to Beauty”:
“Who cares if you come from paradise or hell, appalling Beauty, artless and monstrous scourge, if only your eyes, your smile or your foot reveal the infinite I love and have never known?”
Perhaps you recall our mid-January premiere of 4 songs from Yo La Tengo’s forthcoming album, ‘There’s A Riot Going On’? And perhaps you don’t — who are we to make assumptions about your attention span and capacity for detail? THE IMPORTANT THING is that we’re sharing another of the album’s standout tracks, “For You Too” in advance of the album’s March 16 release.
We’d like to remind you as deliberately as possible that the 2018 edition of Car Seat Headrest’s ‘Twin Fantasy’ is out today on LP & digital formats, along with a 2XCD edition (shown above) including the original 2011 recording. Following a packed instore at Hollywood’s Amoeba on Wednesday, the band are back in action tonight at Seattle’s East Street for a set + signing. July dates in the western portion of the USA have just been confirmed (see below).
Today Belle and Sebastian released their third EP in as many months, concluding the trilogy “How To Solve Our Human Problems.” The CD version compiling all fifteen tracks from the series is available today too– as is the limited edition box set containing all 3 EPs and poster insert.
Belle and Sebastian are on the road in Europe through the end of March, soon to be joined by Julien Baker. Then they’ll make their way across North America in June, supported on select dates by Perfume Genius and Snail Mail. Tickets for all dates are listed below and on sale now.
If all this weren’t enough, the group took a poll this week asking fans to contribute their thoughts to “Bowlie on a Boat,” a European cruise commemorating the 20th anniversary of their self-produced music festival Bowlie Weekender. The poll is live and awaiting your input here.
The latest single from Lucy Dacus’ hotly anticipated 2nd album, ‘Historian’ (out March 2), “Next Of Kin” is now available to stream or download. Preorder ‘Historian’ bundled with Lucy’s debut album, ‘No Burden’ now thru midnight tomorrow (2/14) for 20% off at The Matador Store.
A special Valentine’s Day playlist compiled by Lucy Dacus is now available at Spotify.
This morning, Iceage release their first new music since 2014 in the form of the self-produced, “Catch It” (recorded at Göteborg, Sweden’s Kungsten Studios by Mattias Glavå) with an accompanying video directed by Adam Hashemi, mostly shot on 8mm in Los Angeles. In addition to previously announced European dates, Iceage kick off a North America tour on May 10 at Seattle’s Nordic Museum (dates and relevant ticket links are below)
Following Tuesday’s all-too brief teaser, we’re thrilled (and maybe a little relieved) to be unveiling the first new music from Stephen Malkmus & The Jicks since 2014 in the form of the new single, “Middle America”. The Jicks hit the road for a major (and minor) market tour this June ; you can probably expect more than just one new song (BUT WHO ARE WE TO DETERMINE OR EVEN SPECULATE ABOUT THIS GREAT AMERICAN BAND’S REPERTOIRE?). Tickets are on sale this Friday at 10am local time, dates are below.
Earlier today, “My Boy”, the latest single from Car Seat Headrest’s forthcoming ‘Twin Fantasy’, premiered on Zane Lowe’s Beats One program. Tickets for a one-off show at Brooklyn’s Market Hotel are on sale now.