Meta or Not? AMG’s Chavez Bio Screams Nick Sylvester

(thanks to Frank for the tip).  

Before the days of monkeys peeing into their mouths, Nick Sylvester would treat us to quasi-more-thoughtful meta-reviews of albums none of us should otherwise notice. So, this one has our meta-radars on full alert.

AMG on Chavez:  Betters Days Are NOW With NBC's New Must See Monday!!!

Just in case an editor actually decides to show up today, the full article is after the jump… Continue reading “Meta or Not? AMG’s Chavez Bio Screams Nick Sylvester”

You Can’t Pick Your Fans, But There’s No Harm In Trying

buckley.jpg bullwinkle.jpg

(one of the above might be a friend of Yo La Tengo. Hint : It isn't the guy on the left)

Currently laying waste to the Mountain Regions, Yo La Tengo took time out from their busy schedule to forward the following bulletin:

A fan sent us this link, with the apt subject line: Horrors! 

Your request for songs to add to an NRO soundtrack is the perfect Friday afternoon diversion.  So here are a few tunes that popped into my mind, leading off with my strongest candidate.

“My Little Corner of the World”-Yo La Tengo (This great song really ought to  be the theme for The Corner.  Sample lyrics:  “And if you care to stay in my little corner of the world/We could hide away in my little corner of the world/I always knew that I'd find someone like you/So welcome to my little corner of the world.”

May we respectfully but firmly state on record that the only Corner we wholeheartedly endorse is Bullwinkle's, and that the National Review Online's is to put it gently, not in second place.   What's the legal term for Cease and Desist?

Matador Purchases Youse Tube

I realize that many of you were skeptical when you opened the newspapers this morning. "MATADOR BUYS B&W CONSOLE TV FOR $16.95" screamed the headlines, and yes, I suppose this does seem weird. Won't the technology be obsolete in a few years?  Didn't we already make a similar error when we dropped $25.00 USD on a full range of Radio Shack Flavor Radios?

It's ok. Laugh all you want.  We truly believe the Philco has lots of potential, and no matter how many amazing advancements our friends in Sillicon Valley come up with, there's one fact they can't possibly deny : Scott Clark has never looked right in color.  

Matmos – North America Tour Starts In Mere Minutes

Matmos and So Percussion perform at Whitney Live event_0605171016123-am.jpg

(pic swiped from The Walker Art Center)

The smell of the greasepaint, the roar of the crowd.  To paraphrase Hugo Chavez, we can almost smell the sulpher from here, such is the devilish musical mosaic weaved by Martin, Drew and So Percussion.

10.06.06 Wexner Center for the Arts Columbus OH
10.07.06 Andy Warhol Museum Pittsburgh PA
10.08.06 St. George the Martyr Church – Music Gallery Toronto On
10.09.06 St. George the Martyr Church – Music Gallery Toronto On
10.10.06 Le National Montreal Qu
10.11.06 The International House Philadelphia PA
10.12.06 Boston Museum Of Fine Arts Boston MA
10.13.06 Symphony Space – Leonard Nimoy Thalia New York NY
10.14.06 Symphony Space – Leonard Nimoy Thalia New York NY
10.17.06 Jensen RecCenter Los Angeles CA
10.18.06 Great American Music Hall San Francisco CA
10.20.06 Holocene Portland OR
10.21.06 The Triple Door Seattle WA

Matador Technical Support Notice: YLT Digital Booklets

matador technical support

By way of a couple level-headed emails (and one not-so…the same guy who didn't like this), it's come to our attention that the QuickTime booklets that we gave our Season Pass holders and that came for free with your iTunes purchase of "I Am Not…." are not working.  After ten minutes of blaming ourselves incessantly and moping around guilt-ridden, we were relieved to discover that the problem is not our fault.  It seems like Apple – in a spat of anti-competitive, techno-poo-poo-ery – has disabled Flash support as a default in their latest release of QuickTime 7.  So try this:   1.  Open up QuickTime.  2. Go to "QuickTime" preferences.  3.  Under "Advanced", check "enable flash support".  4.  Open the booklet.  5. Revel in multi-media glory. 

Yo La Tengo at The Times BFI London Film Festival Oct 31

I think my ears are still ringing from the incredible loudness of the New Jersey Yo La Tengo show and I can still taste the buttery yumminess of the ‘Ass’ cookies (or should I say ‘arse’) baked by a friend of the band presented to Ira after the show. No, they certainly didn’t taste like ass. The Loewes Theatre was resplendent in it’s shabby chic, I especially liked the display of old candy wrappers they had discovered during the renovations, perhaps we should shove some ass cookies or Yo La Tengo flyers behind the seats to be unearthed in another hundred years.

Speaking of asses, has anyone seen the new John Cameron Mitchell movie “Shortbus”? I hear there’s a lot of ass in that one, although it has received several very positive reviews so I’m rather looking forward to seeing it, not least because the ass-kickers themselves, Yo La Tengo, scored it. Of course it hasn’t come out here in the UK yet but it is being debuted at The Times BFI London Film Festival later this month. As it happens to nearly coincide with Yo La Tengo’s extensive European tour the band have been invited to participate in a special event at the Film Festival where they discuss their contribution and composition for movies on October 31st. The focus will be on both “Shortbus” and the new Kelly Reichardt film starring Will Oldham, “Old Joy” also screening at the festival, whilst showing clips of other movie projects including the soundtracks for “Game 6” and “Junebug” as well as their cameos in “I Shot Andy Warhol” and “The Book Of Life”. A must for all Yo La Tengo-fan-cinefiles and burgeoning film composers. Perhaps we can get some ‘Ass’ cupcakes for that one…

More info here:

Let’s not forget, of course, the upcoming dates:


Tue 7 – Cardiff – Point

Wed 8 – Gateshead – Sage

Thu 9 – Cambridge – Junction

Sat 11 – London – Forum

Not A Photograph

The Mission Of Burma documentary, 'Not A Photograph', showed yesterday at the ungodly hour of 4pm in merry London town as part of the Raindance Film Festival. So, Lucy, myself and our best-ever intern Alice (well, better than the last one) went to check out Burma on the big screen. Now, for me, music documentaries are generally tortuous – conveying what music means and how it is created must one the hardest things to do in cinema, and music docs mostly end up being increasingly self-important extended EPKs, which is boring for everyone. Burma don't do boring. Despite covering a pretty large timespan (and cultural shift), 'Not A Photograph' zips by. It covers Burma's origins and active years without mythmaking or romance (someone states, pretty matter-of-factly 'They were terrified of success'), and their early days still seem like the most exciting time to have been involved in US underground music. If you get the opportunity, seeing this in a cinema is a treat – all the archive footage on a large screen and loud soundsystem is totally worth it. Highlights:

  • Clint's wife explains that she had no idea that Roger was in a successful rock group. And has no idea who Nirvana were. Michael Azerad is horrified.
  • The New York show where Ira from Yo La Tengo, Richard Baluyut from Versus (Lucy was excited about that one) and Moby, from, um, Moby, all played guitar on one song.
  • The other New York show where Thurston Moore and Lee Renaldo from Sonic Youth play guitar.
  • The Burma historian. That guy is animated.
  • Clint's niece: 'They're a little on the weird side'.
  • Roger refers to the band as 'legendary'. The rest of the band crack up.

All in all, I guess the documentary did it's job, cause when I got home I listened to 'Vs' and 'The Obliterati' back to back, and will probably do the same today. You can buy the DVD at And you should.

Good News For The Garden State…

…the old “Kiss Me Where It Smells” joke is bound for a re-write. From Kiss Online :

Gene Simmons will make 12 public appearances to promote the new KISS Fragrance line. Paul Stanley will use a day off from his LIVE TO WIN Tour, to make an appearance for the Fragrance on Nov. 4th. Complete details for the events are listed below.

PHILADELPHIA Thursday, October 12, 2006 BOSCOV’S Oxford Valley Mall, 2300 East Lincoln Highway, Langhorne, Pa. 5PM – 8PM Gene

RALEIGH Friday, October 13, 2006 BELK Southpoint Mall, 6910 Fayetteville Rd., Durham, NC 4PM – 7PM Gene

MYRTLE BEACH Saturday, October 14, 2006 BELK Coastal Grand Mall, 1400 Coastal Brand Circle, Myrtle Beach, SC 1PM – 4PM Gene

FAYETTEVILLE Monday, October 16, 2006 FT. BRAGG Fort Bragg North Post PX, 103-0137 2nd & Butner, Ft Bragg, NC 3PM – 5PM Gene

ORLANDO Wednesday, October 18, 2006 VIRGIN Virgin Records, 1494 Buena Vista Dr. Lake Buena Vista, Fl. 5PM – 8PM Gene

ATLANTA Thursday, October 19, 2006 BELK Mall of Georgia, 3333 Buford Drive, Buford, Ga. 4PM – 7PM Gene

JACKSONVILLE Friday, October 20, 2006 BELK Regency Square Mall, 9501 Arlingtlon Expwy, Jacksonville, Fl 4PM – 7PM Gene

BIRMINGHAM Saturday, October 21, 2006 PARISIAN Riverchase Galleria, 2100 Riverchase Galleria, Birmingham, Al. 2PM -5PM Gene

JACKSON Sunday, October 22, 2006 BELK Northpark Mall, 1200 East Country Line Road, Ridgeland, Ms. 1PM – 4PM Gene

RIVERSIDE Wednesday, October 25, 2006 GOTTSCHALK’S Riverside Plaza, 3635 Riverside Plaza, Riverside, Ca. 4PM – 7PM Gene

FRESNO Thursday, October 26, 2006 GOTTSCHALK’S Fashion Fair Mall, 755 Shaw Road, Fresno, Ca. 4PM – 7PM Gene

LAS VEGAS Saturday, October 28, 2006 DILLARD’S Fashion Show Mall, 3200 Las Vegas Blvd. South, Las Vegas, Nv. 1PM – 3PM Gene

ROCHESTER HILLS Saturday, November 04, 2006 PARISIAN Rochester Hills Mall, 400 North Adams Rd., Rochester Hills, Mi 3PM -6PM Paul

TrendWatch: Pitchfork Abandons Do-ey Decimals For Embeds

Just when you’ve gotten all used to Pitchfork’s “buy by number” system, they go and establish a new rubrik. I’ll reserve full judgement until I have listened to the new Jet album just in case it does taste like monkey pee.

Pitchfork On Jet: Almost As Poignant As The One Where The Chimp Sniffs Its Finger And Falls
Pitchfork On The Hold Steady: If You’re Happy And You Know It

Plagiarism Alert

I hate to pick on Victory Records — with the possible exceptions of Zero Hour and Mammoth, no other indie proved as influential to the development of Matador’s early aesthetic. But I couldn’t help but take notice of the following spiel on Victory’s site, supposedly penned by the label’s latest signing, The Warriors.

At one point or another, everyone has had a friend who has pulled you out of a dark place; Someone who has believed and cared enough to provide you with new hope and encouragement. For us, Victory Records is that friend. Victory has released the most progressive and influential hardcore bands for nearly 2 decades (This FACT is undeniable), and we’re more than honored to carry the torch. Will this change the content of our records, musically or visually? Absolutely not. We are now and ever shall be dedicated to creating music that is both honest, progressive and most importantly “Hardcore”, as we have come to define it for ourselves. Our love and dedication for what we do will only be amplified by this new friendship. So from Cause For Alarm, Warzone, Snapcase to Comeback Kid, the Victory hardcore legacy continues. Our friends at Eulogy Recordings will forever remain friends. We will never forget their efforts and generosity. Eulogy gave us life, now Victory will ensure our survival as a band. From this point on any future Warriors records will proudly bare the mark of the Bull Dog.

I’m sorry, but the above testimonial — give or take a few band names substituted — is word for word, culled from the exact same letter the Ponys wrote after their signing to Matador this past July. I should know. I made them write it.

Does This Helicopter Make My Ass Look Big? (Stereogum Winners)

Stereogum Ass
(photo courtesy

You get to work on a Monday and you’re greated by dozens of IMs and emails that your ass is on the home page of one of the world’s largest music blogs. You immediately go to the blog and realize that you were a t-shirt tuck away from blog-infamy. But that ass road in a helicopter on Friday around Manhattan with four lucky contest winners and Scott. After circling the Statue of Liberty and dive-bombing the Hudson River, I’m sold and would recommend the whirly-bird treatment to anyone who can swing it (that excludes most of us). It feels like flying in a bubble and when your pilot says “okay, we’re gonna dive down now”, he really means “we’re going Apollo 13 for the next 10 seconds, hold on to your lunch.” Full personal accounts are below.

Stereogum: I Am Not Afraid To Partake In Those Spoils
Contest Winner: Ira Gave Me Cookies!

New Yo La Tengo Dates

As Yo La Tengo’s North American tour is well underway (with a gala performance taking place just a stone’s throw from the old Tube Bar just an hour or two away), the following shows have just been confirmed :

October 1 – Babylon Club, Ottawa, Canada
October 11 – Belly Up Aspen, Aspen, CO
October 12 – In The Venue, Salt Lake City, UT

In honor of this exciting announcement, I thought about posting a YouTube clip of Ira and Georgia performing at Waterfront Records in 1988, but you’re probably gonna get plenty of that sort of thing in Jersey City tonight.

So instead, here’s Dr. Gene Scott.  Have a wild weekend!

Matmos at the Centre Pompidou, Sept 27 2006

The Matmos Paris France experience proved to be more graceful and elegant than the earthier and rocking Matmos London England experience. A bit like Paris versus London all over really. I guess the tone was set by the cultural palace that is the Centre Pompidou versus the garish red walls and velvet of Koko. But it was also the appearance on stage of the grand piano, its raised lid echoing the curves of the full sized classical harp. Both these instruments were missing from London.

The shows starts with Nate walking on to the powerful filmed imagery of the rose emerging from a cows uterus. The screen is massive (as is the stage) Disembodied plastic gloved hands manipulate both flower and body part. The song this accompanied, “Tract For Valerie Solonas”, ends with Martin playing a large inflated helium balloon. “YTTE” proves to be a crowd pleaser. “Roses and Teeth For Ludwig Wittgenstein” is propelled by Nate and Zeena using bunches of red roses as drumsticks. Petals fly into the air leaving the centre stage with a carpet of red. “Germs Burn For Darby Crash” starts with the unsettling footage of a cigarette burning Drews forearm and the gasp of his pain. An audience volunteer has his head shaved into a Mohawk with an amplified electric shaver by Martin. As the performance ends the audience calls for an encore. The house lights go up but people want more. After another song the band have to return to the stage to a standing ovation. Paris loves Matmos! And so do I. Both the London and Paris shows were stunning in their own right.