Archive for January, 2012

Listen to all five Fucked Up Chinese Zodiac singles… Year of the Tiger comes out next Tuesday

By Patrick on Tuesday, January 31st, 2012

Every Chinese New Year since 2006, Fucked Up have released a 12″ single inspired by the beasts of the Chinese Zodiac.

The latest single will be Year Of The Tiger, out February 7.

Listen to the four existing Zodiac singles via the widget above, and the new one on release date.

2006: Year of the Dog (Blocks Recording Club) buy
2008: Year of the Pig (What’s Your Rupture? and Matador) buy
2009: Year of the Rat (What’s Your Rupture?) buy
2010: Year of the Ox (Merge) buy
2012: Year of the Tiger (Matador) preorder

Clocking in between 10 and 20 minutes apiece, Fucked Up’s Zodiac singles contain their most ambitious work, along with numerous and surprising guest musicians, ranging from Zola Jesus and a Toronto string quartet on Year of the Ox to Jim Jarmusch and Austra’s Katie Stelmanis on Year of the Tiger.
Looking For Gold
Fucked Up on Facebook

Get To Know Your Local Independent Retailer Vol. 6 – Bull Moose

By Michael on Monday, January 30th, 2012

Bull Moose: A college drinking game where you’re only permitted to drink beer from the left hand. If caught drinking from the right hand and someone yells, “Bull Moose” you are required to finish what is left of your beer.


Bull Moose: One of New England’s best record outlets and a wholly independent music chain. For this week’s installment of this ground breaking series, we talked to Bull Moose’s Chris Brown about his stores, the future and bull semen.

1. Tell us briefly about your store.
There are ten Bull Moose stores in Maine and New Hampshire.  We try to let each store fit its surroundings, so each Bull Moose has its own vibe and a different selection.  We have a little more metal here, more video games there, etc.  The stores near shopping malls are a little spiffier than the funky downtown stores.  It’s important to let our customers determine what we sell and how the stores look.  Over the years, Bull Moose has grown to include movies, video games and even books.

2. What got you into the independent record store business?
Retail is in my blood – my great-great grandfather had the John Deere dealership in Lyons, KS.  He sold plows, implements and bull semen.  I wanted to own a comic book store when I was ten.  Of course, I was very involved in music, both as a performer and as a collector as a kid.  By the time I was a teenager I wanted to be Keith Emerson or own a triple-story classical music store in Albany, NY.  I applied at a couple of record stores back then and finally was hired at Bull Moose.  I worked there in college and then went off to be a rock star.  I was ready to give up that dream around the time that the owner of Bull Moose asked me to come back.

4. How have things been going from a business perspective?
Very well.  2011 will be Bull Moose’s best year ever.

5. What do you think spells the survival for an independent record store today?

6. What are some of the coolest thing labels have done with you? Instores? Promotions? Sales?
First, Record Store Day because RSD incorporates everything that ever was cool about a record store, artists and record labels.  Next would be the Live at Bull Moose CD series.  Instores are awesome but usually only 200 people experience them.  It’s wonderful to be able to share quality recordings of in-stores with thousands of people.

7. Why do we need record stores?
We need music stores the same way that we need plumbing.  Pipes and music stores are the best way to get something essential into your home.  A good music store is like a good faucet.  You can have hot water, cold water, or whatever temperature you want.  You decide.
Stores are the best place to buy music because stores are the home of the album.  I’m not talking about LPs, necessarily. I’m talking about 35-60 minutes of music that is supposed to be good all the way through and hopefully move the listener.  Singles are great, but it takes a full album to change your life.

9. Who are your top 3 favorite bands right now?
I’ll limit my answer to artists who released a new CD in 2011 – Graveyard, Tony Brown, The Modern Airline (my sister’s band)

Mike Haliechuk of Fucked Up on eating (despite being a vegetarian)

By Patrick on Wednesday, January 25th, 2012

The great Mike Haliechuk, guitarist and and main songwriter / conceptualist of Fucked Up, holds forth on Eater about his fave New York restaurants.

If you want to read more about his experiences at Per Se, Chez Panisse, Del Posto and the hidden secrets of San Sebastian and Toronto,


And if you don’t, what are you doing on the Matablog anyway? You obviously belong elsewhere.

Some recent dishes

By Patrick on Monday, January 23rd, 2012

No time for too much detail, but here are some recent dishes.

Chicken arroz caldo, Filipino comfort food from Jun-Blog. I made the chicken stock from scratch yesterday. I scoured the city fruitlessly (NPI) for calamansi, and even bought rangpur limes from Eataly, but ended up using regular limes as Jun recommends.

Beef pad prik king adapted from David Thompson. I made the curry paste from scratch, but anyone used to cooking Thai food in NYC will recognize the shortcuts used from the photo above – brined green peppercorns in place of fresh, Thai basil in place of the often unfindable holy basil (if anyone knows a source in Manhattan besides Bangkok Centre Grocery, which is often sold out, please let me know. Note that what is marked as “holy basil” in the fridge at Kalustyan’s is actually Thai basil.)

Madhur Jaffrey’s kheema, a Delhi slow-cooked ground beef dish from her first cookbook, is one of my regular favorite heartwarming dishes, and always a pleasure to make. It’s one of those meals where the various flavors waft in succession from the pan as the dish cooks, so that you gradually smell the meal in advance. It’s like eating twice. This is an easy variation she supplies after the main recipe, with peas. They’re a great, sweet & textural addition.

Kala chana (black chickpeas) made from Neelam Batra’s 1000 Indian Recipes. This is an inconsistent and difficult book for me, because I don’t cook in the quantities she recommends (frequently making a cup and half of a given paste or masala), and spices don’t always scale well. However this recipe turned out delicious.

I’ve been eating a TON of legumes, in fact, and will post more about those in the weeks to come. I’ve actually accidentally cooked vegan for a few days in a row. (I even realized I could make a full vegan meal including pasta puttanesca by substituting Marmite for the anchovies.) Anyway, if you’re into beans (and I highly recommend Russ Parsons’ no-soak method if you’re worried about all the prep time), then check out the excellent Rancho Gordo site for dried heirloom beans. Their Good Mother Stollards are meaty, earthy and with incredible depth. Expect them to take over 2 hours with the no-soak method, but boy are they worth it.

I leave you with a picture of the Good Mother Stollards below. Just some aromatics during the cooking, topped with chopped chiles. They are also great with Rancho Gordo’s “oregano Indio,” which is like Mexican oregano but more intense, with a citrusy lemony undertone.

Ceremony Play CA, UK + Pissed Jeans joins NYC curated show

By Claire T on Monday, January 23rd, 2012

(photo by Ceremony)

In celebration of Ceremony’s March 6 release of Zoo, we’re happy to announce the band will be playing a few all ages California release week shows in LA, Anaheim and Berkeley.

Thursday, March 8 – Los Angeles, CA – Center For The Arts, Eagle Rock (Nails supports)

Friday, March 9 – Anaheim, CA – Chain Reaction (Cold World, Skin Like Iron, Rank/Xerox support)

Saturday, March 10 – Berkeley, CA – 924 Gilman Street (Cold World, Old Firm Casuals, No Sir support)

Tickets are on sale now.
LA Tix
Anaheim Tix
Berkeley Tix

And as previously reported Ceremony will be playing their curated NYC showcase at Le Poisson Rouge on Saturday, February 4. Now we’re very happy to announce that special guest, Pissed Jeans, will be joining Ceremony on this already insane lineup that also includes The Rival Mob, Hoax, Kim Phuc and Gods and Queens.

Hardcore Gig Volume #183
Saturday February 4 at 5pm
All Ages
$5 advance (available at the LPR box office)/$10 day of show
Le Poisson Rouge – 158 Bleecker Street, NYC

Last but never least the band will be making their way over to the UK for a run of shows in March.
Here’s that show info:
Monday, March 19 – Kingston – Fighting Cocks
Tuesday, March 20 – London – XOYO
Wednesday, March 21 – Bristol – Fleece
Thursday, March 22 – Nottingham – Rock City Basement
Friday, March 23 – Manchester – Moho
Saturday, March 24 – Leeds – The Well

Listen to “Hysteria
Pre-order Zoo and Ceremony  bundles on the Matador Store
Ceremony website

Lee Ranaldo – US Dates with Disappears, M. Ward

By Gerard on Friday, January 20th, 2012

Shortly after the March 20 release of ‘Between The Times & The Tides’ (LP/CD/digital) , Lee Ranaldo and his band consisting of Alan Licht, Steve Shelley and Irwin Menken are hitting the road in April followed by a string of shows supporting M. Ward in what we like to call venues that are less-than-intimate.  Ticket details are below (at least those we have this early)

4/7   Mexico City, MEX    Indie-O Fest 2012  (with Thurston Moore, Kurt Vile and the Violators, Wild Flag, Youth Lagoon, City and Colour and Antoine Reverb)
4/17  Ithaca, NY    The Haunt  (with Disappears)
4/18  Albany, NY    Valentines (with Disappears)

(all dates below supporting M. Ward)

5/5 Portland, ME – State Theatre – on sale now
5/6 Burlington, VT – Higher Ground – on sale now
5/7 New Haven, CT – Toads Place – on sale now
5/8 Boston, MA – House Of Blues – on sale Saturday at 10am
5/11 New York, NY – Webster Hall – on sale NEXT Friday 1/27 at noon
5/12 Philadelphia, PA – Union Transfer – on sale now
5/13 Washington, DC – 9:30 Club – on sale now
5/15 Durham, NC – Duke Performances – on sale Monday 1/30
5/16 Athens, GA – Georgia Theatre – on sale now
5/17 Atlanta, GA – Buckhead Theatre – on sale Saturday at 10am
5/22 Chicago, IL – Vic Theatre – on sale NEXT Saturday 1/28 at 10am

Lee Ranaldo“Off The Wall” (mp3)

Preorders for ‘Between The Times & The Tides’ are available NOW the Matador Store.

Get To Know Your Local Independent Retailer Vol. 5 – Bull City

By Michael on Thursday, January 19th, 2012

Bull City – or Bull Cittay, as it’s sometimes known around here – is one of our favorite stores around. Owner Chaz Martenstein is everything awesome about independent record stores. His love of new music and his devotion to his local Durham scene are second to none and his store is far too awesome for one measly post but here goes…

1. Tell us briefly about your store.
Bull City Records opened up in November of 2005. I opened the shop myself (with the help of credit cards and my partner Rachael) after working in various shops in various cities and I’m currently still the sole employee. And I still love it. For almost six years, I sat up in an upstairs attic space off of 9th St in Durham, NC, but recently moved to an actual storefront on a nicely busy street just a few blocks around the corner. The shop mostly focuses on vinyl revolving around the worlds of indie, garage, psych and whatever other weirdo releases I can get my hands on. I still have CDs, but I really only stock a small selection of brand new independent releases or CD-only reissues.

2. What got you into the independent record store business?
Well, like most future record store employees, my high school years were spent flipping through the used CD bins at my local record shops. After I realized there was a whole new world outside of Tower Records and regular rock radio, I discovered Plan 9 Records, Soundhole Records and the local college radio station at the University of Richmond. I heard Sonic Youth, Mudhoney, Fugazi and Superchunk for the first time and it was all downhill from there. A spark ignited in my head. There was a feeling of community, energy and experimentation embedded in this world of independent music that I’d never experienced. It was instantly addictive and freeing. A little to quickly it became obvious that I was destined to force myself into a world of tiny paychecks, but 24 hours a day/7 days a week of fun. The music world never slows down, there’s something new and amazing coming out every single week of the year. What other business can really offer that?? I wanted to be a part of that world and pass on that same electric feeling to anyone else looking for it.

As far as actual work goes, I worked my way up in the music retail business from pretty close to the bottom. I got my start while I was working in my college’s small independent bookstore in Williamsburg, VA when Barnes & Noble came in, bought it up and built a giant new building. As one of a handful of original employees, I was allowed to pick the department in which I wanted to work, so I of course picked the brand new music department. After I graduated I moved up to Cape May, NJ to kill some time and got a job working at the tiny ACRAT (Atlantic City Records and Tapes) there. That summer was a touristy blur of nothing but pop punk and Jimmy Buffet. It was a blast. From there I moved out to Boulder, CO and bugged Bart’s CD Cellar on Pearl St for about a year straight until they slipped a job my way. Bart’s was an amazing store to work in – it was always busy, it was two stories tall, my fellow employees were great and ridiculously knowledgeable in each of their own areas and Bart was one of the best bosses I’ve ever known. It was while working there that I got the inspiration to try a go at it for myself. Sadly, it was one of the shops that did not survive one of the many waves of record store closings.

3. Who are some of your favorite contemporary stores?
I’d have to probably base this on inspiration. I don’t get away from my own shop too often, but there’s an amazingly supportive group of indie record stores out there plugging away at it for the same reasons. For Bull City Records, I get daily inspiration from Harvest Records in Asheville, NC; Lunchbox Records in Charlotte, NC; Steady Sounds in Richmond, VA; Aquarius Records in San Francisco, CA; Speakertree Records in Lynchburg, VA; 1-2-3-4-Go! Records in Oakland, CA and Sound Fix Records in New York, among others. Celebrated Summer in Baltimore, MD is pretty rad too – it’s located in the back of a great book/comic shop. Oh! I also just recently visited a place out in Santa Cruz, CA called Metavinyl that was amazing! Solid vinyl shop for current indie and psych. It’s funny, even on short vacations away from my own shop, I still manage to somehow find myself in record stores every day.

4. How have things been going from a business perspective?
Things have been going pretty well actually. Moving into a ground-level space with a parking lot (and heat and A/C) has made a really positive difference. The store has a giant plate-glass window in front so it even manages to advertise itself when I’m not open. In the old second floor space, I had no way to really entice people to come in from outside. It was basically a destination-only space. With vinyl on the upswing as it is right now too, there’s finally a very real and positive hope for small shops like this to succeed and grow. It’s been a lot of fun to watch actually. The trends in music consumption and music production are always changing, which is another reason why I love this business so much. It was getting pretty hairy for a lot of folks a year and a half ago. I almost closed myself! That can really make a person cranky. So that’s definitely something to be happy about!

5. What do you think spells the survival for an independent record store today?
Customer service. Knowledge of stock. Those are the two biggies for me. At the root of it all, you really have to have a wild passion for music itself and be open to the ever-changing forms of music. If you can really figure out how to present good customer service, your love of and excitement for music can be shared with your regulars and newer customers. At Bull City Records I try to work within the niche of indie, garage and psych, so I’m constantly trying to read, listen to and explore new stuff. The fact that discovering and talking about music can still be a full-time job in this day and age is pretty amazing. Sometimes when things outside of the shop get ya down, it’s hard to remember the importance of customer service. There are days where it’s easy to slip, but you have to constantly be reminding yourself that it’s job requirement  #1. Basically 100% of our stock is available for free online, so we really have to work at giving people a very real reason to come in. To me though, that’s half the fun of it! Connecting with people over this stuff is what keeps me going.

6. What are some of the coolest thing labels have done with you? Instores? Promotions? Sales?
To tell you the truth, Matador is one of my favorite labels to work with – and I’m not just saying that because you’re asking me the questions. There are a handful of indie labels out there that really act like partners with the stores who always give us more incentive to work hard or challenge us outside of our normal routine. Recently Rough Trade set up an in-store with Jeffrey Lewis when he came through town. Rather than playing songs, he set up a slideshow detailing the making of the artwork for his brand new record (which is great by the way). He even brought original ink drawings of his comic-style packaging to display. This was one of the best in-stores I’ve ever attended just because it was outside of the usual “come in and play a few songs before your full set of more songs later that day” box. It was a blast! Labels will also hold display-making contests in which we get to compete with other stores for most creatively designed display. It’s a great way for the labels to get their albums more display space and attention, while the stores are wrestling it out for hopeful credit with the label. I hope that’s not disclosing too much of a trade secret!

7. Why do we need record stores?
Wow. This is a heavy question. Like a good bookstore, it’s a breeding ground for culture I believe. Friends are made in the record store, connections are made in the record store, networking is done in the record store, a community is felt in the record store. Think about how boring and monotonous it would be if we only knew what was being pushed in the iTunes market or Pandora Station. We’d have no music to share with friends, because we’d all be seeing the same ads for the same bands! Ha! I feel that record stores must still be important and relevant to the growth and development of modern music too. There are still a bunch of new bands being formed every day who still say they’re influenced by hanging out in their local record stores. If you’ve got a good little shop in your town, chances are they’re playing some good, weird shit over their store speakers right this second! Go hear it!

On a more economically level, it’s also better for your city and state’s economy to shop independent and local. Plus, it keeps local folks employed! Those are really just general reasons to shop with independent stores anywhere though. I think it’s important to remember that we basically vote with our money. Enough preaching though. We all know that already!

8. What kind of taco is your favorite?
I’ll probably catch some flak for this, but honestly I can’t get enough of the taco tripa over at my local taqueria (one of the best in Durham), La Vaquita. The runner-up is always the taco chorizo. Their torta cubana is pretty out of this world too, but I need a strong, empty stomach on days that I go that route.

9. Who are your top 3 favorite bands right now?
This is definitely not a good question for a record store employee! It changes daily. Three of my favorite bands in general until the end of time: The Replacements, The Reigning Sound, the Velvet Underground. However, some of my most listened to current bands are: Wooden Shjips, Heavy Times, Kurt Vile, War on Drugs, Hiss Golden Messenger, Ty Segall, Woods, The Beets, Mount Moriah. It’s not a fair question, so I give a not fair answer.

10. What is your favorite thing about your store? And you can’t say the customers. That’s like saying Einstein or Ghandi when asked “If you could meet one person, living or dead…”
I can listen to music all day is a good place to start. I can bring my dog to work with me every day, that’s pretty important to me. It’s really hard not to say the customers, because none of us would exist without our customers… they’re more essential than we are! I really like the small world that it presents too. The connections with labels and people you make are amazing. It’s a whole culture and spiderweb of people who just enjoy what they do on a day-to-day basis. The fact that I get to interact with idols from my teenage years is pretty heavy too – Mac and Laura from Superchunk will stop in for records sometimes and I get packages from Sub Pop addressed from Mark Arm himself! Six years later, that’s still extremely exciting to me for some reason. Don’t let those packages stop coming, Mr. Arm! The basic act of passing on new music always gives me a thrill too. Apparently that’s another hard question!

11. What are your goals for the future of your store? Long term and short.
Simply to keep the doors open and the music moving. Obviously, I would love to keep growing my stock until it overwhelms the store too. Constant new vinyl coming into the shop keeps me pretty happy. I also wouldn’t mind growing my blog into a more interactive place for discussion. I’ve got some ideas, but I’m still reeling from the excitement of my new space!

12. Tell us about the cool used and collectable action you have going on over there.
This sounds like a question coming more from Mike than from the Matador Blog. You’ll just have to stop by the store to find out! Ha!

Perfume Genius – ‘Hood’ video debuts

By Gabe on Wednesday, January 18th, 2012

We’re excited to show you the first video from Perfume Genius’ second album Put Your Back N 2 It (out Feb 21, pre-order here), directed by Mata-friend Winston H. Case (video credits below). Pitchfork spoke to PG headman Mike Hadreas about the video, his co-star and more.

Also, if you missed it in December, check out the first “look” from PYBN2I, the gorgeous “All Waters“.

Perfume Genius will hit the road in March and April:

Wednesday 21 - San Francisco, CA – Cafe Du Nord
Thursday 22 – Los Angeles, CA – Bootleg Theater
Friday 23 – San Diego, CA – The Casbah
Saturday 24 – Tuscon, AZ – Solar Culture
Monday 26 – Denton, TX – Dan’s Silverleaf
Tuesday 27 – Austin, TX – Lambert’s
Thursday 29 – Atlanta, GA – The Earl
Friday 30 – Durham, NC – The Garage at Motorco
Saturday 31 – Arlington, VA – IOTA Club & Cafe

Monday 02 – Philadelphia, PA – Johnny Brenda’s
Tuesday 03 – New York, NY – Mercury Lounge
Thursday 05 – Brooklyn, NY – Glasslands
Friday 06 – Northampton, MA – Iron Horse Music Hall
Saturday 07 – Montreal, QC – Le Divan Orange
Sunday 08 – Toronto, ON – The Drake Hotel
Monday 09 – Seattle, WA -The Crocodile
Tuesday 10 – Chicago, IL – Schubas
Wednesday 11 – Minneapolis, MN – Cedar Cultural Center
Friday 13 - Denver, CO – Hi Dive
Saturday 14 – Salt Lake City, UT – Kilby Court
Tuesday 17 – Portland, OR – Mississippi Studios
Wednesday 18 - Vancouver, BC – The Biltmore Cabaret
Thursday 19 – Seattle, WA – The Crocodile

Video credits:
Featuring Arpad Miklos

Director / Editor – Winston H. Case
Directory of Photography – William Colby
2nd Camera Operator – John Strong
Producers – Greg Finch & Nils Bernstein
Associate Producers – Taylor Higgins, Ahbra Perry & Rye Curtis
Dolly Operator – Brad Oberhofer
Post FX – Stephen McNally
Colorist – Michael Garber

A Palo Duro Production

Thanks to Lulu Soni, Sam Heesen, Jordan Romero, Augustus Muller & Erez Avissar

Jay Reatard Tee For Charity

By Gerard on Tuesday, January 17th, 2012

As some of you already know, last week marked the 2nd anniversary of the death of Jay Reatard.  The insensitive-rock-history part of me sometimes thinks of the big pile of records he’d have otherwise made in those 24 months, but most of the time I think about the guy his friends and family miss so much.  This morning, we were given a virtual elbow in the ribs by the folks at Yellow Bird Project, who are hawking a Jay Reatard shirt to benefit St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital.  The shirt features a Flying V w/ the Gibson logo replaced by Jay’s initials.  So it’s subtle — you can buy one for someone who hated Jay and tell him or her what the deal is after they’ve been wearing the tee for a year. Thanks to Ruben Cox for the link.

Out today: the Intended Play comp and the first single in Singles Going Home Alone: Stephen Malkmus & The Jicks split with LA Guns

By Patrick on Tuesday, January 17th, 2012

It’s Tuesday, January 17 which means our first two releases of the New Year are out today.

First up is Intended Play, the new ultra-budget vinyl-only sampler from Matador and True Panther. The 11-song LP is $1.98 list price – you can actually order it direct for only $1.80 by clicking on the title above. It contains new tracks from THE YOUNG, CEREMONY TANLINES, LEE RANALDO, PERFUME GENIUS and STEPHEN MALKMUS – all of the above from upcoming releases except the SM track which won’t appear elsewhere, and recent hits (some of them rare) from KURT VILE, GIRLS, FUCKED UP, ESBEN & THE WITCH and COLD CAVE.

Next is the first single in our new 2012 singles club, SINGLES GOING HOME ALONE. It’s an unexpected conjunction between STEPHEN MALKMUS & THE JICKS and the legendary LA GUNS, covering each other. Hear Malkmus jam on “Wheels Of Fire,” and Tracii Guns pull out the stops on “Gorgeous Georgie.” Sleeve art at the top of the post.

It’s not too late to sign up for the singles club, which gets you six exclusive limited-edition 7″es, one every other month this year, plus a special bonus record, an exclusive tote bag and a yearlong 10% discount on all items at the Matador Store, for only $45 including shipping within the US:


The next two confirmed singles are from Austin’s OBN III’s on March 20, and Brooklyn’s The Men on May 8, with subsequent the singles on July 10, September 11 and November 6.

Other upcoming Matador and True Panther releases:

Feb 7 – Fucked Up – Year Of The Tiger
Feb 21 – Perfume Genius – Put Your Back N 2 It
Mar 6 – Ceremony – Zoo
Mar 20 – Tanlines – Mixed Emotions (True Panther)
Mar 20 – Lee Ranaldo – Between The Times and the Tides