EMA – ‘The Future’s Void’ album details / “Satellites” video

Matador Records is even more pleased and excited than usual to announce the release date and album details for the forthcoming LP from EMA, “The Future’s Void”. The album will be released worldwide (ex-Europe) by Matador on April 8 (via City Slang in Europe April 7). The followup to her acclaimed 2011 LP, “Past Life Martyred Saints,” “The Future’s Void” was written by Erika M. Anderson, recorded in Portland, Oregon, and produced by Erika and Leif Shackelford.

(photo : Erika M. Anderson)

EMA recently told NME that the album was influenced by, among other things, NiN demos, the heavier side of early K Records, and William Gibson’s Neuromancer, and that the album deals with the digital commodification of our online lives. She says, “I gravitate toward hooks and melodies, and in some ways the structure of these songs are my poppiest yet,” while noting that the jarring production includes a lot of first takes and spontaneously-recorded ambient sounds “to keep the songs from sounding like advertisements”.

Last month the first single “Satellites” was released to raves, garnering “Best New Track” from Pitchfork, who said, ““It’s discontent composed to Carl Sagan proportion, and it’s easily the most bracing thing yet from an artist already more bracing than most.“ Spin said, “it’s a rumbling mammoth that feeds off canned, clapping percussion and waves of static feedback,” while Stereogum noted, “anxiety this ferocious is a timeless thing.”

Today also sees the debut of the “Satellites” video. It’s a DIY affair from EMA which uses tech effects that she says are either “primitive or sophisticated, depending on your point of view”.  This is coupled with an interactive “nightmare media” cube on her website, featuring a slow-motion fake-plant fetish and the only footage on the internet that shows the true nature of cats. There’s further details on the making of the “Satellites” video here (“we shot most of the footage with a few friends over a long weekend and edited it via Skype screen-share.  There were no stylists, DP, lighting crews, catering or make up artists. But we did have an iPhone that shoots slo-mo, a Canon, a fog machine, and a Microsoft Kinect”).

‘The Future’s Void’ track listing:

Satellites
So Blonde
3Jane
Cthulu
Smoulder
Neuromancer
When She Comes
100 Years
Solace
Dead Celebrity

EMA will be playing select performances during SXSW Music, and touring extensively on release; tour dates to be announced soon.

Pre-order CD, LP, and Cassette at the Matador Store (LP on limited edition lavender vinyl, also available bundled with a t-shirt at a discounted price).

Pre-order on iTunes & receive “Satellites” as an instant download. iTunes version comes with bonus track “Drown”.

EMAofficial site
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Body/Head – ‘Coming Apart’ double LP / CD – coming September 10

(photograph by Annabel Mehran)

Body/Head are an electric guitar duo comprised of Kim Gordon (CKM, Sonic Youth, Free Kitten, etc.) and Bill Nace (X.O.4, Vampire Belt, Ceylon Mange, etc.) The pair began working together in various loose formats a few years ago, but the Body/Head concept evolved more specifically in early 2012.

Initially their approach was almost entirely instrumental — lattices of interwoven feedback rainbows, with bits recalling everyone from Heldon to Keiji Haino. They usually performed against a backdrop of slow-motion film projection, creating a dream narrative of undeniable power and visionary reach. Kim’s voice began creeping into the mix soon after, and the vocals now have become an intrinsic part of their musical architecture. They have even started writing and playing “songs” now, compositionally distinct from their purely aleatory origins, but still featuring lots of built-in improvisational space.

Body/Head have also worked with guest artists since their inception. An early session with Michael Morley of The Dead C resulted in the Body/Gate/Head LP ‘Glare Luring Yo’, and live collaborations with Ikue Mori. Ikue has been focusing on electronics as her primary instrument in the decades since the end of her groundbreaking trio DNA, but Kim was able to talk her into trying drums again, and the results have been astounding. Ikue’s percussion grounds the spirals of guitar and vocals with its strong central pulse, allowing everybody to achieve greater heights of musical/visual disorientation.

Body/Head have thus far recorded a single for Dennis Tyfuss’ Ultra Eczema Editions, a tour EP for Nace’s own Open Mouth Productions, and released their collaboration with Morley through Feeding Tube Records. Their next release , ‘Coming Apart’, will be issued as a double LP /CD/digital album by Matador Records on September 10 (September 16 in the United Kingdom and Europe)

preorder ‘Coming Apart’ from The Matador Store

Queens of The Stone Age – “I Appear Missing” Animated Video Unveiled

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C9OfBcjyxKY[/youtube]

Following the cryptic surfacing of the likeclockwork.tv and its hazy semi-clues and last night’s Adult Swim ad, Queens Of The Stone Age have unveiled a trailer scored by three minutes of the never-before-heard “I Appear Missing,” which appears in its entirety on the band’s upcoming ‘… Like Clockwork’, out June 4 on Matador Records.

Showcasing disturbingly beautiful (or beautifully disturbing?) images from the boundless imagination of … Like Clockwork visual visionary, enigmatic UK artist Boneface (brought to life by animator Liam Brazier), “I Appear Missing” is a hypnotic journey into a nightmare-scape that adds illustrative dimension to another audio glimpse of the coming storm that is … Like Clockwork. Keep Your Eyes peeled on likeclockwork.tv to see what happens next…

Described by Queens principal Joshua Homme as “an audio documentary of a manic year,” … Like Clockwork is the band’s first full length collection of all new material since 2007’s Era Vulgaris, as well as its debut release on new label partner Matador. The record can be pre-ordered on CD and vinyl now from and from iTunes . All pre-orders will immediately receive “My God Is The Sun,” which has been generating some early heat at:

“(FOUR STARS) the band’s most gloriously motorik chug since those early days… takes off like a trip to the Mushroom Planet as Homme croons about desert roads to nowhere and praises the sun like he never gets tired of staring at it… Breathe deep”–ROLLING STONE

“an appropriately gnarly 4/4 monster, recalling their hardest hitting early material. As Homme gazes in awe at the sun’s omnipresent embrace, rock die-hards have ample time to hail the Queens’ revival”
–BILLBOARD

… Like Clockwork was produced by Joshua Homme and QOTSA, recorded by Mark Rankinwith additional engineering by Justin Smith, at Josh’s studio, Pink Duck, in Burbank, California.

Queens of the Stone Age are: Joshua Homme, Troy Van Leeuwen, Dean Fertita and Michael Shuman. Jon Theodore plays drums live (and on the new record’s title track). See below for tour dates and check back at the following for updates:

qotsa.com

Facebook – QOTSA

likeclockwork.tv

Live 2013

06/13/13 – Interlaken, Swizerland – Greenfield Festival
06/14/13 – Landgraaf, Netherlands – Pinkpop
06/15/13 – Donington, UK – Download Festival
06/21/13 – Neuhausen ob Eck, Germany – Southside Festival
06/22/13 – Berlin, Germany – Zitadelle Spandau
06/23/13 – Scheesel, Germany – Hurricane Festival
06/26/13 – Helsinki, Finland – Rock The Beach Festival
06/28/13 – Borlange, Sweden – Peace & Love Festival
06/30/13 – Herchesfeld Roeser, Luxembourg – Rock a Field Festival
07/02/13 – Vienna, Austria – Wiener Stadthalle D
07/03/13 – Budapest, Hungary – Volt Festival
07/02-05/13 – Hradec Kralove, Czech Republic – Rock For People Festival
07/05/13 – Gdansk, Poland – Heineken Open’er Festival
08/02/13 – Chicago, IL – Lollapalooza
08/03/13 – Bonner Springs, KS – Cricket Wireless Amphitheater
08/09/13 – Squamish, BC – Squamish Valley Music Festival
08/31/13 – Philadelphia, PA – Budweiser Made in America Festival

Queens of the Stone Age – ‘…Like Clockwork’ details/preorder ; “My God Is The Sun” stream

“My God Is The Sun”

(L-R  : Michael Shuman, Troy Van Leeuwen, Jon Theodore, Joshua Homme, Dean Fertita.  Photograph by Nora Lezano)

QUEENS OF THE STONE AGE
…. LIKE CLOCKWORK
 NEW ALBUM OUT JUNE 4 ON MATADOR RECORDS

“My God Is The Sun” Streaming at QOTSA.com

CD/LP Pre-Order Live Now at The Matador Store

iTunes Pre-Order Begins April 8 at 12:00 a.m.

Queens Of The Stone Age has confirmed June 4 as the release date for its sixth studio album ‘… Like Clockwork’ on Matador Records.

The band has also unveiled the new album’s stunning artwork by UK artist Boneface.

… Like Clockwork’s release is preceded by first single “My God Is The Sun,” which received its recent live debut in Queens Of The Stone Age’s Lollapalooza Brazil set, and has just been unveiled via radio premieres, respectively, in the UK with Zane Lowe and in the U.S. on KROQ.

… Like Clockwork can be pre-ordered on CD and vinyl now from the Matador Store, and, as of midnight Tuesday, April 8, from iTunes . All pre-orders will immediately receive “My God Is The Sun,” which can be heard at QOTSA.com

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-90obSa1Az4[/youtube]

Described by Queens principal Joshua Homme as “an audio documentary of a manic year,” ‘… Like Clockwork’ is the band’s first full length collection of all new material since 2007’s ‘Era Vulgaris’, as well as the band’s debut release on new label partner Matador. The full track listing for the album is:

1. Keep Your Eyes Peeled
2. I Sat By The Ocean
3. The Vampyre of Time and Memory
4. If I Had  A Tail
5. My God Is The Sun
6. Kalopsia
7. Fairweather Friends
8. Smooth Sailing
9. I Appear Missing
10. …Like Clockwork

‘…. Like Clockwork’ was produced by Joshua Homme and QOTSA, recorded by Mark Rankin with additional engineering by Justin Smith, at Josh’s studio, Pink Duck, in Burbank, California.

Queens of the Stone Age are:
Joshua Homme, Troy Van Leeuwen, Dean Fertita and Michael Shuman

Jon Theodore will play drums on the upcoming tour, which is not exactly upcoming as dates began with last weeks Lollapalooza Brazil and Chile appearances. See below for confirmed dates and check back at the following for updates:

QOTSA.com

Twitter : @QOTSA

QOTSA Facebook

Queens Of The Stone Age   …Like Clockwork Live 2013

13-15 June 13  Greenfield Festival, Interlaken, Switzerland
14 June 13 Pinkpop, Landgraaf, Netherlands
14-16 June 13  Download Festival, Donington, UK
21-23 June 13  Southside Festival, Neuhausen ob Eck, Germany
22 June 13 Zitadelle Spandau, Berlin, Germany
21-23 June 13  Hurricane Festival, Scheesel, Germany
26 June 13 Rock The Beach Festival, Helsinki, Finland
28 June 13 Peace & Love Festival, Borlange, Sweden
30 June 13 Rock a Field Festival, Herchesfeld Roeser, Luxembourg
2 July 13 Wiener Stadthalle Halle D, Vienna, Austria
3 July 13 Volt Festival, Budapest, Hungary
2-5 July 13 Rock For People Festival, Hradec Kralove, Czech Republic
2 August 13 Lollapalooza, Chicago IL

 

Coming October 23 : The New Paul Banks album, ‘Banks’

(photo by Helena Christensen)

On October 23, Matador will release the 2nd solo album from Interpol vocalist/guitarist Paul Banks.  With ‘Banks’ (LP/CD/digital), Paul ditches the Julian Plenti alter-ego, and the resulting 10-song album is a tour-de- force of exhilarating minor-key intensity.

The Base (192 kbps MP3)

Banks was recorded in New York and Connecticut with producer Peter Katis (Interpol, The National, Shearwater, Jónsi…).  The album is  personal and epic, catchy and serpentine – much like your favorite Interpol albums – with Paul’s wry humor, bare emotion, and varied influences all in full effect.

track listing :

1. The Base
2. Over My Shoulder
3. Arise, Awake
4. Young Again
5. Lisbon
6. I’ll Sue You
7. Paid For That
8. Another Chance
9. No Mistakes
10. Summertime Is Coming

preorder ‘Banks’ on LP or CD from The Matador Store.

bankspaulbanks.com

Paul Banks on Twitter

Interpol – New US Dates, Autumn 2010

INTERPOL FALL US TOUR DATES:

Mon 10/18            Oakland CA                            Fox Theater
Thu 10/21             San Diego CA                          Soma
Fri 10/22              Las Vegas NV                          The Joint
Sat 10/23              Los Angeles CA                      The Greek Theatre
Mon 10/25            Denver CO                              Ogden Theatre
Wed 10/27            Dallas TX                                The Palladium
Thu 10/28            Austin TX                                Stubb’s
Fri 10/29              Houston TX                           Verizon Wireless Theater
Sun 10/31            New Orleans LA                     Voodoo Experience
Mon 11/01            Atlanta GA                              Tabernacle
Wes 11/03            Washington DC                     Constitution Hall
Thu 11/04            Philadelphia PA                     Tower Theatre
Fri 11/05              New York NY                          United Palace Theatre

“We wanted to let you know about our fall tour on-sale dates.
Below notes when all venues will go on sale to the public.
In addition, Ticketmaster will be running a pre-sale so you can  purchase tickets before they go on-sale to the public.
And if you’re so inclined, Ticketmaster will be offering a ticket + CD bundle option.

The bundle gets you a ticket plus our new CD along with other stuff  like a free “Lights” download, a poster and a chance to meet the band at the venue. Looking forward, Interpol”

PLEASE NOTE:
This offer is not valid if you purchased your ticket(s) through TicketExchange.
Offer only valid for US customers.

Pre-sale begins August 11 and general on-sale August 13 for:

10/27- Dallas, TX – The Palladium
10/29 – Houston, TX – Verizon Wireless Theater
11/1- Atlanta, GA – The Tabernacle
11/3 – Washington, DC – Constitution Hall
11/4- Upper Darby (Philly), PA – Tower Theatre

Pre-sales commence August 12 and general on-sale on August 14 for:

10/22 – Las Vegas, NV – The Joint
10/23 – Los Angeles, CA – Greek Theatre

Pre-sales start  August 19 and general on-sale August 21 for:

10/25 – Denver, CO – Ogden Theatre

Pre-sale start August 20 and general on-sale August 22 for:

10/18 – Oakland, CA – Fox Theatre

(Ticketmaster Pre-sales do not include San Diego, New Orleans, Austin and NYC ;

10/21 San Diego – Soma –  Tickets now on sale

10/31 New Orleans – Voodoo Experience – Tickets now on sale

11/5 – NYC – United Palace – Tickets now on sale

10/28 – Austin, TX  – Stubb’s – General on-sale is August 13)

Preorder Interpol – S/T on CD, single LP or double 12″45 or digital download from The Matador Store.   In stores, September 7.

God Help The Girl: Subscription + Brand New Video

GodHelpTheGirl.com has re-launched with a very exciting, fan-drooler of a subscription offer that includes 7″s, a Deluxe CD or LP of the new album, a 10″ and oodles of extra digital goodies.  Plus, if you order you will get an instant stream of the entire album.

This subscription package will gently unwind over the months allowing you to soak up the living, breathing world of God Help The Girl. A musical project with a beautifully and diligently crafted narrative that deserves to be listened to over time, for each place, character and voice to be properly digested before moving on to the next.

As well as delivering 7″ singles, 10″ EPs and your choice of CD or LP albums straight to your door we will regularly fill your inbox with video footage made to document the creative process by Stuart Murdoch and Marisa Privitera, music videos and album streams to keep you entertained no matter how far from your record players you stray this summer.

By subscribing you will receive the following:

Physical

  • 11th May: 7″ ‘Come Monday Night’ single
  • 22nd June: LTD CD or LP God Help The Girl album
  • 20th July: 7″ ‘Funny Little Frog’ single
  • By Xmas: 10″ 5 track exclusive EP

Digital

  • A full album stream on purchase
  • MP3s of the Album & 7″ on release
  • The ‘Come Monday Night’ video
  • 4 x episodes documenting the ‘Making of”
  • The ‘Funny Little Frog’ video
Now to further get you excited, here is the brand new video for the first single “Come Monday Night” directed by Blaire Young and Stuart Murdoch. (via Pitchfork.tv)

Presenting ‘God Help The Girl’ ; A Story Set To Music By Stuart Murdoch Of Belle & Sebastian

God Help The Girl l_9d245b7408e0419db2831225f99d80e5

• Belle & Sebastian’s Stuart Murdoch presents his new musical project ‘God Help The Girl’, self titled debut (LP/CD/digital available June 23 on Matador Records in North America, the previous day in Europe on Rough Trade), preceded by a single ‘Come Monday Night’ (May 11, via Rough Trade)

“Come Monday Night” –

• Features an array of singers, including Stuart’s discovery Catherine Ireton, Asya of Smoosh, Neil Hannon of the Divine Comedy, the other members of Belle and Sebastian and a 45 piece orchestra conducted by ‘Withnail & I’ composer Rick Wentworth.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NpV_ma_zed4&feature=player_embedded[/youtube]

‘God Help The Girl’ is a story set to music, which Stuart Murdoch has been working on intermittently for the last five years, its origin in some songs that were written while Belle and Sebastian were touring ‘Dear Catastrophe Waitress’ in 2004. Stuart explains:

“I was out for a run and I got this tune in my head and it occurred to me that it wasn’t a Belle & Sebastian song. I could hear female voices and strings, I could hear the whole thing, but I just couldn’t envisage myself singing it with the group.”

As more songs emerged, a shape and theme began to develop, before the music was actually recorded, or the vocalists found to take on the parts.

“All the time I was touring with Belle and Sebastian, I was putting aside songs for certain characters,” he says, “and at one point I realised, that it would make sense to string them together to form the backbone of a musical narrative.”

The hunt was then on to find some great new voices to put to use during the recordings. A competition where singers could add their vocals to the demo recordings of ‘Funny Little Frog’ and ‘The Psychiatrist Is In’ was posted on the iMeem social networking site and attracted around 400 entries. From these, Brittany Stallings (Olympia, Washington) and Dina Bankole (Jackson, Michigan) came to Glasgow in February 2008 to rehearse and record some parts, Brittany making the lead vocal part on ‘Funny Little Frog’ her own.

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Among those who auditioned early in the process was Catherine Ireton (above), who had moved from Limerick to Glasgow, a friend of a friend, who had previously appeared on the sleeve of Belle and Sebastian’s last single, ‘The White Collar Boy.’ She took on the lead vocals for the majority of the songs on the record.

The recording continued during 2008, with a total of nine different singers (including Neil Hannon from the Divine Comedy and Asya from American teen trio, Smoosh) joining the members of Belle and Sebastian over the course of a few months. During this, Mick Cooke’s orchestral arrangements were recorded in London with the orchestra before the finishing touches were applied in Glasgow.

The result is a breathtaking record from one of pop’s most singular voices, combining the strengths and feel of the early Belle and Sebastian records in a broader musical palette, which draws equally on musicals, sixties’ girl groups, eighties’ indie and, most of all, classic pop records.  And, in Catherine, Stuart has found a rare talent – her clear, lilting vocals bringing to life the characters in Stuart’s imagination and making for an ambitious and engrossing musical journey

Tracklisting / Vocalist

01.Act of the Apostle – Catherine Ireton

02.God Help The Girl – Catherine

03.Pretty Eve In The Tub – Stuart, Catherine

04.A Unified Theory – Instrumental

05.Hiding Neath My Umbrella – Catherine, Stuart

06.Funny Little Frog – Brittany Stallings

07.If You Could Speak – Catherine, Anna Miles

08.Musician Please Take Heed – Catherine

09.Perfection as a Hipster – Neil Hannon, Catherine

10.Come Monday Night  – Catherine

11.Music Room Window – instrumental

12.I Just Want His Jeans – Asya

13.Iʼll Have To Dance With Cassie  – Catherine

14.A Down and Dusky Blonde – Dina Bankole, Catherine, Celia Garcia, Brittany, Asya

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Preorder information for the Matador edition(s) of ‘God Help The Girl’ is forthcoming in this space very soon.

(God Help The Girl official site)

(God Help The Girl at imeem,  God The Help The Girl at MySpace)

Save The Date : Sonic Youth – ‘The Eternal’, ‘Buy Early Get Now’ Preorders Begin March 24

(all SY photos in this post by Chris Habib)

As announced previously, the new Sonic Youth double LP/CD/digital album, ‘The Eternal’ is coming out on June 9. However, the album will be available to those taking part in Matador’s Buy Early Get Now campaign on April 28.

 

Along with your preorder of ‘The Eternal’ on LP or CD, you’ll get an instant stream of the album when BEGN launches on April 28, and later (either picking it up at your fave local record store or through the auspices of the U.S. Postal Service) a bonus limited edition live LP* culled from Sonic Youth’s July 4, 2008 show in Battery Park at the River To River Festival, which will contain an exclusive poster. Additional MP3’s will be delivered via the BEGN site before or after the album’s physical release date (June 9).

 

The album can be preordered from a trusted local retailer starting March 24 or directly from Matador on April 28.

Though the full list of participating record stores will be available on March 24, retailers interested in being involved should contact Mike Venutolo at Matador Direct (mike@matadordirect.com)

 

A separate but equally thrilling variation on Buy Early Get Now for our friends in the United Kingdom and other territories will be announced in this space shortly.

*- while supplies last

Though we’re keeping a rather tight lid on the musical contents to ‘The Eternal’ between now and late April, there’s a somewhat truncated preview that’s just been posted at Newsweek.com.

Coming June 9 : Sonic Youth’s ‘The Eternal’

(album artwork features a painting by John Fahey)

Sonic Youth‘s 16th album, ‘The Eternal’, will be released on double vinyl, compact disc, and digital album by Matador Records on June 9.   Produced by John Agnello and the band, ‘The Eternal’ not only marks Sonic Youth’s return to the independent label sphere (titles on their own SYR label excepted) after a long association with Geffen, but more importantly, ranks as one of their more inspired efforts in a 28 year career.


(photograph by Andrew Kesin)

Recorded through November and December of last year at the band’s Echo Canyon West studio in Hoboken, NJ, ‘The Eternal’ features many firsts for a Sonic Youth album, including a number of shared vocals between Kim, Thurston, and Lee, and the studio debut of former Pavement/Dustdevils bassist Mark Ibold, a member of Sonic Youth’s touring band for the past few years.

The band’s current extracurricular activities are as always, quite varied.  The Kunsthalle in Dusseldorf, Germany is now hosting the touring museum exhibition SONIC YOUTH ETC.:  SENSATIONAL FIX, which focuses on the band’s multidisciplinary work since the band’s formation in 1981, including their collaborations with visual artists, filmmakers, designers and musicians. Kim Gordon launches a clothing line, Mirror/Dash, at Urban Outfitters on February 16, and is showing at The Armory Show in NYC March 5-8.   Lee Ranaldo, with co-conspirator Leah Singer, just opened installations at the Konsthall in Stockholm and the CNEAI in Paris, and he has a piece in the  travelling exhibition “Bad Moon Rising 3”, currently at Boots Contemporary Art Space in St. Louis.   A Beck/Sonic Youth split 7″ is being released by Matador on April 18 for Record Store Day.  And the band recently collaborated with the Merce Cunningham Dance Company (along with former Led Zeppelin bassist John Paul Jones and mixed-media sound composer Takehisa Kosugi) on a work celebrating, and being performed for, Cunningham’s 90th birthday on April 16 at the Brooklyn Academy of Music.

Upcoming SY shows include April gigs in Austria and Germany (including the closing of SENSATIONAL FIX in Dusseldorf) and May 16 at the No Fun Festival in Brooklyn.  They will be touring throughout the summer in support of ‘The Eternal’.

More information on these and the many, many other activities since the 2006 release of their last album, ‘Rather Ripped’, can be found here.

Of ‘The Eternal’, Matador’s Gerard Cosloy says, “We’ve not had a record in our recent history that’s been the subject of nearly as much speculation and anticipation.  Suffice to say we’re pretty amazed at the way the band delivered something this neoteric while still sounding like, well, themselves.  Less of a reinvention and perhaps more to do with a particularly awesome dozen songs.”

Matador will shortly announce a Buy Early Get Now scheme for the album with some very interesting bonus material.

Sonic Youth are:
Steve Shelley
Lee Ranaldo
Kim Gordon
Thurston Moore
Mark Ibold

Track listing:

1. Sacred Trickster
2. Anti-Orgasm
3. Leaky Lifeboat (for Gregory Corso)
4. Antenna
5. What We Know
6. Calming The Snake
7. Poison Arrow
8. Malibu Gas Station
9. Thunderclap For Bobby Pyn
10. No Way
11. Walkin Blue
12. Massage The History

Coming Soon : Lou Reed’s ‘Berlin’ : Original Film Soundtrack

(photograph by Timothy Greenfield-Sanders, taken from Lou Reed.com)

We’re thrilled to announce that Matador will be releasing Lou Reed’s Berlin:  Original Film Soundtrack on September 30 (digital) /October 7 (LP/CD), coinciding with the Weinstein Company’s October 6, 2008 DVD release of the Julian Schnabel film.

Upon the 1973 release of Berlin, Lou Reed’s controversial successor to the wildly popular Transformer, Rolling Stone‘s Stephen Davis described it as one of “certain records so patently offensive that one wishes to take some kind of physical vengeance on the artists that perpetrate them…a distorted and degenerate demimonde of paranoia, schizophrenia, degradation, pill-induced violence and suicide.”  A earnest pan, yes, but also a fabulous pull quote.   Thirty years later, the magazine named it one of the 500 greatest albums of all time.
 
Staging Berlin had been discussed for over 30 years, and in December of 2006 it became a reality, over four days at St. Ann’s Warehouse in Brooklyn.  It was the first time Reed performed the album live. The New York Times said that Reed “wasn’t revisiting these songs as oldies or artifacts; he was reinhabiting them…Berlin carried Reed’s music to an ornate extreme, but now its trappings are secondary.  What comes through is the way it feels.”
 
The film Berlin, by acclaimed painter/director Julian Schnabel (“Basquiat”, “Before Night Falls”, “The Diving Bell & The Butterfly”), documents these historic performances.  Though the album’s harrowing qualities are well documented, the experience of seeing and hearing it brought to life was invigorating.  More information about the film can be found at http://www.berlinthefilm.com/.
 

Produced by Bob Ezrin and Hal Willner, and featuring musicians like Fernando Saunders, Antony, Steve Hunter, Rob Wassermann, Rupert Christie and Sharon Jones, a seven piece orchestra (including Eyvind Kang and Jane Scarpantoni), and the Brooklyn Youth Chorus, this recording magnifies the cinematic quality of the original album.  It also includes the three encores, “Candy Says,” “Rock Minuet,” and “Sweet Jane.”

Berlin remains one of the most alarming and frank highlights of a career marked by innovation and candor. Just as Schnabel’s effort is far more ambitious than your average concert film, this release stands as a majestic and poignant re-imagining of one of the 20th century’s most powerful works.

Lou Reed is a member of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and has been awarded the Chevalier Commander of Arts and Letters by the French Government, and the prestigious Hero Award by the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences.  His incisive, literate approach to popular (and unpopular) music has spanned five decades, with a remarkable lack of complacency. Reed is undoubtedly one of the most important and influential living musicians, and the creative landscape that we survey in 2008 — including much of this label’s back catalog — is very difficult to imagine without his contributions.  More material related to Reed’s career can be found at http://www.loureed.com.

Matador & Jay Reatard : This Is What We Like To Call A Press Release

(photo by Jeff Allen)

Matador is pleased to announce the signing of a multi-album, worldwide, exclusive recording agreement with prolific Memphis people person Jay Reatard. The label was already engaged in a series of limited-edition 7″ releases, to be compiled on CD for fall release. The first 7″, “See/Saw,” is already sold out; the second, “Painted Shut,” is due out on May 20. Jay will be recording in August for a brand-new studio album out in early 2009. (His former label, In The Red, is releasing a compilation of early singles in June.)

Coming May 6 : Matmos’ ‘Supreme Balloon’ LP/CD



The new album from Matmos finds the dynamic duo taking a holiday from conceptual responsibility, skipping the outré sampling antics in favor of a lighthearted “cosmic pop” record made entirely out of synthesizers. Leave it to Matmos to invent a hard and fast rule that they have to follow even when they’re just having fun: the creative restriction this time around is that “Supreme Balloon” is an ALL synthesizer album and no microphones were used at any point. That’s right, no household objects played in a percussive manner, no snails or blood or amplified semen, no acoustic instruments, no voices of famous people for five seconds, not even any half-way cheating with Vocoders, just synthesizers of all shapes, sizes, eras and nationalities being snipped, folded and reshuffled by an arsenal of samplers and computers into colorful sound-origami.

Gear fetishists take note: the exotic and antiquated synths used on the record heavily spotlight the classic 60s/70s/80s consumer electronic rigs of Arp, Korg, Roland, Waldorf and Moog, and feature modular systems from Electro-Comp, Doepfer and Akai (hell, even a stylophone and a Suzuki Omnichord show up); these were recorded at home in San Francisco, California and in the SnowGhost studio at Whitefish, Montana. But there are also completely unique, one-of-a-kind modular curios present, such as the “Coupigny” modular synthesizer housed in the INA/GRM studios at Radio France in Paris and used extensively by some of the titans of musique-concrete. Guest players invited to the party include living treasure of American jazz Marshall Allen of the Sun Ra Arkestra (he plays the E.V.I. or Electronic Voice Instrument, a breath controlled oscillator, on “Mister Mouth”), Bay Area troublemakers Jon Leidecker (aka Wobbly), East Coast electroacoustic sages Jay Lesser and Keith Fullerton Whitman, and classically trained pianist Sarah Cahill. Plus, our roll-call of the good and great would be remiss if we didn’t mention that the gatefold double vinyl and ITunes edition of the album also includes the bonus track “Hashish Master” that features a guest solo synth improvisation from none-other-than minimalist mastermind Terry Riley(!). Though it was recorded all over the world over the last two years, the whole shebang was finished in Baltimore, Maryland (the band’s new home, at least as long as Drew Daniel is a professor in the English Department at Johns Hopkins University), and comes encased in some truly gorgeous watercolor artwork by Robert Syrett.

To break it down: the album drops with a bumpin’ front end of four rhythmic workouts (perky, stomping, toe-tapping, and shuffling, respectively) that coach Perrey & Kingsley and 8-bit video game music and kitsch Latin Moogsploitation into some freaky positions. Then things take a classy European vacation in which the baroque composer Francois Couperin’s “Les Folies Francaises” is given the Wendy Carlos treatment. Then the band turn a corner into unexpected, ambitious new territory and things swell to a truly ridiculous/heroic climax. The jewel in the crown is the album’s title track, a 24 minute monster synth jam that builds from a lone Roland SH-101 wobbling your sub-woofers into a celestial, psychedelic epic whose spiraling arpeggios recall the sidelong LP-era mind-journeys of Cluster, Mother Mallard and Vangelis. Riding an insistent tabla pattern courtesy of a “Taal Mala” drum machine from India, warm, bubbling layers of analogue synthesis, and the chattering and chirping of MAX patches shaking hands with boutique EFX pedals, it’s a long strange trip indeed. Things cool down with an ambient air kiss and it’s over.

We know you’re probably shaking your head and thinking to yourself, “an electronic band makes an all-electronic album? These guys must be CRAZY.” And you’d be right. Consider this revenge for all those Queen records whose liner notes said “And nobody played the synthesizer!”, and a sweet surprise from a truly unpredictable American band.

“Rainbow Flag” – mp3, from ‘Supreme Baloon’ LP/CD (US- May 6, 2008, UK/EU, May 5 2008)

Wanted : Singers For A Musical Film

Belle & Sebastian's Stuart Murdoch is looking for vocalists for the musical film, 'God Help The Girl' which he has been developing over the last year or so. To do this, he has teamed up with iMeem to conduct a search for female vocalists who are interested in taking part. At the God Help The Girl profile you can read much more about the project and, if you are interested, submit a version of one of two songs for his consideration.

You can read Stuart's introduction to "God Help The Girl" here and even if you are not considering entering – drop by and join up with iMeem to keep up with the project and hear the songs – 'The Psychiatrist Is In' and a  new version of  'Funny Little Frog' as sung by Catherine Ireton.

Good luck!

Limited Edition Matador Tees – Now On Sale

(while t-shirt sales may or may not prove lucrative, we cannot argue with the results of the controversial "Clone Miwa Okumura Project".  4 product managers, one paycheck!)

As mentioned previously, to commemorate Matador's barely legal status (ie. we're celebrating our 18th this year), we have commissioned a series of t-shirts. Created by artists, musicians, friends, and friends of friends (including Mogollon, Yo La Tengo's James McNew, Blair Kelly, and others) these shirts are limited to runs of 200 per design, and once they're gone, they're gone.  The first batch are available now, and, as inevitably as sequels to Shrek "Police Academy, more are coming soon.

We're selling them through the Matador Store, as well as through select retailers.  As they become available more designs will be added here where you'll also find the spiel on the individual designers.

Attn : Aspiring T-Shirt Designers

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(illustration by Mogollon)

Dear Friends,To commemorate Matador's barely legal status (ie. we're celebrating our 18th this year), we're commissioning a series of t-shirts. Though the garments are meant to be vaguely label/logo insipired, but we're hoping for something a bit more inspired that our previous designs (though that said, the Matador "that's italian" shirt still goes for crazy loot on eBay).

The shirts will be printed in a limited run of 200 per design, with each designer receiving $250.00 (USD) plus 20 shirts to be peddled or given away as he or she sees fit.  In turn, Matador will flog the remaining shirts for a sum  to-be-determined, but it'll probably be on the pricey side of things. 

The selected designs will be available for viewing on the Matador site & blog for advance purchase, though they'll also be available from select retailers.  We'll provide links to the individual designers' websites, too.

Knock yourselves out. Thank You. 

An Open Letter To The Matador Street Team

(FOR INTERNAL USE ONLY : Gerard, do NOT PUT THIS ON THE BLOG)

Dear Team,

Strong first day numbers for Yo La Tengo’s ‘I Am Not Afraid Of You And I Will Beat Your Ass’, as expected, what with that fucking whirly-bird contest and all the good press we paid for. But before you dislocate your shoulders patting yourselvess on the fucking back, keep in mind that we’re still fighting a losing battle at the big boxes, where this album is still pretty hard to find.

I’m expecting a progress report no later than 3pm today about what sort of mischief our regional kids have been up to in the past 24 hours. I thought we’d made the point that hiding the new John Mayer, Black Keys and Mars Volta CD’s wasn’t merely some kind of rock biz sabotage mission, but could in fact, be framed as an “us vs. them” schism. Indie vs. major. Indie vs. other indie. Me vs. you. You vs. not having a fucking job. Please don’t make me spell this out for you any further.

I’m also told there is no stock at the Borders on Church Street. Enough with the excuses, already, it’s been five fucking years.

OK. I’m off to lift weights. You can reach me on the Fuckberry. I want digital pix of those Black Keys and Mars Volta discs hidden in the country section, I’m not kidding around.

You should be very afraid of me and I will kick your ass.

That was a joke, by the way. You’d better fucking laugh.

Tony Matador

Damage Control Is Our Business (And Business Is Very Good)

From this morning’s New York Times.

Matador Records’ Gerard Cosloy (above) said Tuesday he harbors no hatred towards wearers of straw hats and he apologized to ”everyone in the indie rock community for the vitriolic and harmful words” he used in a infrequently visited, rarely updated weblog.

”Hatred of any kind goes against my faith,” he said in a statement released through publicist Nils Bernstein

”I’m not just asking for forgiveness,” Cosloy said. ”I would like to take it one step further, and meet with the Pitchfork staff, with whom I can have a one-on-one discussion to discern the appropriate path for healing.”

Cosloy said he’s ”in the process of understanding where those vicious words came from during that Fuze energy drink inspired display” and hopes members of the Chicago community, ”whom I have personally offended,” will help him in his recovery efforts.

”There is no excuse, nor should there be any tolerance, for anyone who thinks or expresses any kind of anti-straw hat remark,” Cosloy said.

”But please know from my heart that I am not against people who wear straw hats or flip-flops in public. I am not a bigot. Hatred of any kind goes against my faith.”

Cosloy acknowledged ”there will be many in that community who will want nothing to do with me, and that would be understandable. But I pray that door is not forever closed.”

He said he must take responsibility for making anti-straw hat remarks because as a public person, ”when I say something, either articulated, typed, or blurted out in a moment of insanity, my words carry weight in the public arena. Not very much weight, but enough to impact future party invitations.”