Matablog

Archive for March, 2007

The Ponys play The Bowery: Bums stunned, not an off track to be found

By Nick on Friday, March 30th, 2007

 

I could tell you about how awesome The Ponys sounded at their Bowery Ballroom gig on Monday, but why bother?  I'm an interested party obviously, so if I call them the best parts of the Rolling Stones, Television, and Thurston Moore-penned Sonic Youth sewn together in a Frankenstein's monster-sized dose of R-O-C-K in the USA, it's just not going to have the same impact as when Billy Blogger steals that line in three weeks.  

Instead, I'll let a picture do the talking.  Ladies and Gentleman, let your eyes drift upward to the image of Ponys mainman Jered Gummere howling out "Turn The Lights Out" while covered in silly string.  Note how he's playing the keys so hard his right hand is apparently generating a circle of light.  Bear in mind that this was only three songs in to the set, and the evening only got more rockin' from there.

Harris On The Death of “Maoist Certainties”

By Gerard on Friday, March 30th, 2007

When it comes to rock snobbery, is nothing sacred? Or more to the point, have the tribunals for Aesthetic Crimes been told to go home early on Friday?  The Guardian's John Harris is particuarly miffed that proponents of "towelling headbands and songs called things like Expresso Love" aren't enough to sound the Uncool Alarm.

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During a recent idle hour on YouTube, I came across an item that therefore caused me no end of amazement. As part of their ongoing quest to bury the memory of the camp, sprightly little pop group who authored such pearls as Mr Brightside, The Killers were captured – on More 4's Live From Abbey Road – reverentially covering the Straits' aforementioned bit of Shakespearian wonderment, attempting to mimic the Knopf's self-taught finger-plucking genius (no chance), and talking about their distant childhood memories of that great music business behemoth, 1985's Brothers in Arms.Thus, I was reminded once again that cool no longer rules, and we are living through the tyranny of what might be called the New Wrong. A few examples: Sean Rowley's Guilty Pleasures franchise is expanding so fast that it will soon have to simply rename itself Pleasures. Its latest in-concert wheeze found the audience dancing to the consummate bilge of Toto's 1982 Africa, and specially-invited musicians covering songs by the likes of Bonnie Tyler, Neil Diamond and Electric Light Orchestra. Further down the age range, among music's current hot hopes are the supposedly cutting-edge Enter Shikari and a gang of Brummies called the Twang; their very different touchstones are the uber-wrong dance attraction Faithless and Joshua Tree/string vest-era U2. Whether we blame the government, the iPod, or the fall of the Berlin Wall, it's true: the Maoist certainties of yesteryear are gone forever.

Whether or not you agree with Harris' implication the Killers have achieved tastemaker status, how about the suggestion anyone should feel guility for liking Neil Diamond or ELO? Compared to Killers, anyway. 

Lovin’ Love of Diagrams in the City of Brotherly Love

By Joel on Thursday, March 29th, 2007

Love of Diagrams

Love of Diagrams (above) opened the first date of their opening stint with Ted Leo and the Pharmacists last night in Philadelphia at TLA, and this correspondent reports that it was an amazing show. Totally packed house, great opening set by Love or Perish (which I just realized is also the title of a poem by W.H. Auden, thanks google!), cold Yuenglings and good times and great music all around as Matador's favorite Aussies got some Illadelphians dancing up front. If you're, y'know, a sentient being residing in the lower 48, please do yourself a favor and go see them on this tour. Dates are here: Matador tour page. Tonight's show in D.C. sold out weeks ago, though, but they're playing pretty much everywhere else, so go!  

The New Pornographers In London

By Gerard on Wednesday, March 28th, 2007

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(pic courtesy VPRO)

Crash, boom, bang, tickets for all of the below are already on sale…though we might have a largish outdoorsy gig to confirm a few hours out of town very shortly, hint hint.

18 June – London – Bar Acadamy
19 June – London – Borderline
20 June – London – 93 Ft East

If You Don’t See Mission Of Burma’s April Festival Shows…

By Gerard on Wednesday, March 28th, 2007

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…they might have to continue performing in shorts.  Pic swiped from The Big Takeover.

4/19 – Meehan Auditorium, Brown University, Providence, RI (with The Roots and Soulive)

4/20 – SUNY Purchase, Culture Shock Festival, Purchase NY

Down In Front!

By Gerard on Wednesday, March 28th, 2007
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Times New Viking, as good in the dark as they are in the daylight — better, even.  But I can't see the movie!

Dave Martin Vs. Jeff Lynne

By Gerard on Monday, March 26th, 2007

Matador Direct's esteemed Dave Martin (right) brings his patented the-customer-is-always-wrong ethos to New York Noise

Pretty Girls Makes Graves – They’re Outta Here

By Gerard on Thursday, March 22nd, 2007

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(pic swiped from KEXP, used without permission)

By early June, you will no longer have Pretty Girls Make Graves to kick around anymore. And while this is very, very sad news, we do have to give their booking agent full credit — not many persons have the presence of mind to rout a farewell tour around 4 dates in China.

Thursday, April 26 Beijing, China – Mao Live
Friday, April 27, Hong Kong, China – TBA
Saturday, April 28, Shanghai, China – 4Live0
Sunday, April 29, Beijing, China – D22
Thursday, May 10 – MILWAUKEE, WI: Todd Wehr Auditorium
Friday, May 11 – IOWA CITY, IA: The Picador
Saturday, May 12 – CHICAGO, IL: Empty Bottle
Sunday, May 13 – CLEVELAND, OH: Grog Shop
Monday, May 14 – PITTSBURGH, PA: Mr. Small's
Wednesday, May 16 – PHILADELPHIA, PA: North Star
Thursday, May 17 – CAMBRIDGE, MA: Middle East – Downstairs
Friday, May 18 – PROVIDENCE, RI: The Living Room
Saturday, May 19 – NEW YORK, NY: Gramercy Theatre
Sunday, May 20 – WASHINGTON, D.C.: Black Cat
Tuesday, May 22 – ATLANTA, GA: The Earl
Wednesday, May 23 – TAMPA, FL: The Orpheum
Thursday, May 24 – ORLANDO, FL: The Social
Saturday, May 26 – BATON ROUGE, LA: Spanish Moon
Sunday, May 27 – DENTON, TX: Hailey's
Monday, May 28 – AUSTIN, TX: Emo's
Tuesday, May 29 – ALBUQUERQUE, NM: Launchpad
Wednesday, May 30 – TEMPE, AZ: The Clubhouse
Saturday, June 2 – POMONA, CA: Glasshouse
Sunday, June 3 – LOS ANGELES, CA: Troubadour
Monday, June 4 – SAN FRANCISCO, CA: Great American Music Hall
Wednesday, June 6 – PORTLAND, OR: Berbati's Pan
Saturday, June 9 – SEATTLE, WA: Neumo's

SXSW: In Their Own Words

By Adam F on Wednesday, March 21st, 2007

While you might be sick of us gushing about that well-on-its-way to being legendary "Shearwater at Central Prez" concert down in Austin, Howard and Jonathan have posted some personal accounts on the blog scribed by our favorite Brooklyn via Austin gentleladies.  

Howard and Jonathan:  Baby grands, track bike handlebars, churches and cake

(note:  regarding karaoke, what happens in N. Austin stays in N. Austin) 

Times New Viking – Getting Loopy On North Loop

By Gerard on Wednesday, March 21st, 2007
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In the blazing (well, brighter than nightime, anyhow) sunlight of last Saturday afternoon, Columbus' Times New Viking audition for the upcoming docudrama, "Lo Fi Parking Lot", the space in question in front of Austin's Sound On Sound Records.