Watch Yellowbirds perform a few tracks at off their forthcoming album, Songs from the Vanished Frontier, out May 28 on Royal Potato Family. Thanks to the good folks at BreakThru Radio for the viddy.
Behind a nondescript East Williamsburg tenement at 229 Bushwick Avenue in Brooklyn, NY lies Woods‘ home, recording studio, creative refuge and beloved shithole–Rear House. But after 10 long years the band will say farewell to the former live-in practice space turned ramshackle recording studio, which has also housed bands like Real Estate, Ducktails, The Babies and other members of the Woodsist family. To mark the occasion, Woods are releasing a new single on July 9 featuring a cover of The Kinks’ tune “Gods’ Children,” along with a re-recorded version of “Be All Easy.” “God’s Children” comes from the soundtrack to the 1971 British film Percy, while “Be All Be Easy,” originally from 2011′s Sun and Shade, was re-recorded to capture the live form the song has taken since it’s original release. Both are the first to feature new drummer, Aaron Neveu, formerly of Mmoss.
Woods hits the road next month for a tour that includes stops with Parquet Courts and Alex Bleeker & the Freaks. Full dates below.
The Auras hail from the suburban areas of Toronto where they exist as part of the expansive family of bands who wave the Optical Sounds flag. Steeped in the shoegazy side of the psych world, The Auras recall a brighter MBV meets BJM meets Spacemen 3 kind of a sound. Call it what you will. These guys are one of Toronto’s most exciting acts right now and they’ve just recently released an EP which you can pick up via Bandcamp. Listen to album track “Desert Dream (Nothing Is Real)” below.
Here’s a new video by Chilean psych band The Holdydrug Couple, off their new album Noctuary out now on Sacred Bones. They play our show tonight at Mercury Lounge alongside fellow countrymen Follakzoid and Brooklyn’s La Big Vic. Watch the video for the Tame Impala-esque jammer “Follow Your Way” below.
For those who want to take part in this year’s Canadian Music Week, we’ve handpicked a selection of shows to help you navigate through all the indie soot. If you’re willing to do a bit of traveling, there’s plenty to offer in the way of psych and garage. Here are this year’s nominees.
Ragga sitar psych
Thursday — The Garrison 1030PM
Wednesday — The Garrison 11PM (Crunchy Frog Showcase)
Thursday — Brooklynn 9PM
Japanese Americana folk
Wednesday — Clinton’s @ 8PM (Japan Nite)
Montreal space voyagers
Friday — Lee’s Palace 1230AM
Montreal-based minimalist, experimental, sound collage duo
Friday — Silver Dollar 9PM
The BB Guns
Bubble-gum Toronto garage pop produced by Fucked Up’s Brian Borcherdt
Friday — Silver Dollar 2AM
Throwback ’60s inspired instrumental surf rock
Friday — Supermarket 2AM
Castle If & Cell Memory
New age-y Canadian Kraut
Saturday — Comfort Zone 10PM
East Coast garage rock
Saturday — Parts & Labour 1230AM
New wave steeped in hollow, jangling synths
Thursday — Silver Dollar 12AM
Friday — Silver Dollar 1AM
Saturday — Silver Dollar 12AM
Toronto space rockers on Optical Sounds
Saturday — Silver Dollar 2AM
’60s garage psych
Sunday — Annex Live 11PM
Deep Space Cowboys
Dark, experimental psych
Sunday — Annex Live 11PM
Captain Marryat were a ’70s psych-prog band from Glasgow, Scotland, named after the 19th Century mariner and novelist Captain Frederick Marryat. In 1974, the group released a tiny pressing (200 copies) of their demo album on the Thor Label and sold it exclusively at their gigs around Scotland and its bordering towns. Having initially entered the studio with the intention of cutting only one track, the five-piece band wound up recording five tracks along with an improvised jam, titled “Dance of Thor.” With a sound that drew on the searing leads of Uriah Heep and the fuzzed out journeys of Deep Purple, Captain Marryatt attracted a sizeable following on the pub circuit. But, as the story goes time and time again, bigger labels like EMI and Chrysalis showed little interest, and the group vanished into obscurity some years after the demo’s release. Due to the limited pressing, the album later became an extreme rarity, eventually going for as much as £3,000 on eBay. However, in 2010 Shadoks reissued the original tracks with permission from the band, making this lost psych-prog classic available for all to hear.
While Alex Bleeker spends his days as the bassist in popular indie rock band Real Estate, he also moonlights as the guitarist and frontman in his own band, Alex Bleeker and the Freaks, which takes more from Crazy Horse, the Grateful Dead and Little Wings than The Feelies or Yo La Tengo. Over the past several years, Bleeker has performed sporadic shows in New York and Brooklyn either solo or with a rotating cast of musicians that has, at times, included members of Real Estate. During that time he also released a 7″ and an EP on Underwater Peoples, and will now release his debut full-length, titled How Far Away, on Woodsist in the Spring of this year. Stream “Don’t Look Down,” the lead track on the album, below.
How Far Away comes out May 28 on Woodsist.
Catch Alex Bleeker and the Freaks alongside Quilt and Weyes Blood at our show this Sunday at Glasslands Gallery. RSVP.
The longest track on Pines, the new album by Finland’s Kiki Pau, is the sequel title track “Pines II Makumatka,” which clocks in at just over 15 minutes. The title loosely translates to “Pines II Taste Trip,” and sees the band making its most boundless excursion, through an improvised journey very reminiscent of “Dark Star.” The song unfolds much like a story, entering first through soaring coastal terrain before departing for Eastern dessert bazaars with jangly Arabian percussion and flutes, tripping through vast space and finally crash landing at a Finnish prog show.
Pines, which was mixed by Dungen’s Gustav Ejstes, is out today on beautiful translucent green vinyl via Beyond Beyond is Beyond Records.
In a 1968 interview, John Lennon named The Appletree Theatre’s concept masterpiece Playback as one of his favorite new albums at the time. It’s not surprising, as much of the album taps directly into that same style of twisted sunshine pop that we love dear ol’ John for. You can be sure that if that interview had taken place in the age of the internet, Playback would likely have been eaten up by millions. But how many fans actually came across that interview? Probably not too many. Like many of the great albums of that era, the album was a commercial failure, and following its release founding members Terry and John Boylan went off to become session musicians. Playback is a concept album, divided into three acts, an overture, and an epilogue, that sounds as though its rolling through the radio dial in a late 60s episode of the Twilight Zone. The album moves between full songs and snippest of music that range from sunshine pop to jazz, to soul, all sewn together with a series of strange vocal narratives. It’s an album that demands to be listened to as a whole, and those who do will enjoy a rather interesting trip.
Sidenote: Woods covered The Appletree Theatre’s “Who Do I Think I Am” on their 2011 album Sun & Shade.
If you’re into the whimsy throwback sounds of bands like Foxygen, then your ears will likely bask in the the oft-similar, lo fi psych of the Happy Jawbone Family Band. Ramshackle rock I guess you could call it. It’s like if fuckin’ Mick had been more like fuckin’ Keith, you know? Rock solid fuckers these here fellas are. Here’s “Fistful of Butter” off their new album Tastes the Broom, out January 29th on Mexican Summer.
As we prepare to venture to the great northern lands of Sweden in just one week’s time, we’ve decided to share this astral journey by Swedish prog rock band Kaipa. “Inget Nytt Under Solen” is the title track of the band’s 1976 sophomore album, which translates to “Nothing New Under the Sun,” from the much-quoted bible verse “What has been will be again, what has been done will be done again; there is nothing new under the sun.”
(will upload downloadable mp3 shortly)
Imagine the ideal soundtrack to one of those retro 70s surf films shot on an old Super 8. What you conjure up will likely sound something like Austin-based psych band Holy Wave. Just listen to the jam “Albuquerque Freakout”, which takes on that classic wobbly Texas psych sound with layers of surf riffs, tambourines and howling echoes beneath the stoney vocal lines. This imagery carries throughout Holy Wave’s Evil Hits, out now on Burger Records, with vinyl coming February 2013 in conjunction with the Reverberation Appreciation Society. The release compiles 5 tracks from their 2011 release Knife Hits with 5 tracks from this year’s The Evil Has Landed EP. Picture those gnarly waves and tune in.
Holy Wave – “Albuquerque Freakout”
Also check out the song in the recent trailer for the 2012 Austin Psych Fest concert film below.
We first came across the name Tjutjuna when they released their split tour cassette with Woodsman in the spring of 2011. But for unexplainable reasons, the challenging name slipped our minds and may have fallen into the abyss were it not for the keen ears of DGB contributor Johanna Andersson and our good pal Marc “Mike” Norman “Newman.” The group charts a similar neo-kraut course as labelmates Woodsman, with droning, transportive sound odysseys, totemic drum circles and shimmering guitars. Earlier this week, they released their new cassingle, “Desert Song” b/w “Schulze and Shaffner” on Fire Talk and you can now hear/download both tracks below. Also be sure to check out Tjutjuna’s recent Beyond Beyond is Beyond session on East Village Radio.
Purchase the cassette single via Fire Talk.
Here’s the latest video from Ty Segall & White Fence’s session at Room 205.
Los Angeles-based psych band The Allah Las have released a video for the song “Tell Me (What’s On Your Mind).” The track comes off a new 45″ backed by the instrumental, “Sacred Sands.” You can pick up a copy now via Innovative Leisure.
Hair, The forthcoming collaborative LP from Ty Segall and Tim Presley’s White Fence is one that has been receiving a great deal of play around here as of late. Combining two heroes of the contemporary garage rock world, the album transports us back in time with retro fuzzed guitar freak outs, muddy, distorted vocals, and catchy psych trips aplenty. The pair recently stopped by Room 205 to record live session and you can now check out two of the videos below. Hair comes out on April 26 via Drag City. You’ll want to pick up a copy of this one.
“I Am Not A Game”
For the past 13 years, percussionist Craig Myers has been exploring the world of West African music, venturing to places like Mali, Senegal, Guinea and The Ivory Coast in search of his sound. Performing on a traditional African West instrument called the Kamel N’goni, Myers plays with Afro-inspired Brooklyn band Rubblebucket, as well as in Phish bass player Mike Gordon’s solo group. But recently, the percussion virtuoso has also turned his attention to a new seven-piece ensemble called Barika (pronounced body-kah), hailing from Burlington, VT. Inspired by the sounds of Mali’s Wassoulou region, the groups churns out psychy poly-rhythmic afro-grooves driven by Myers playing on the Kamel N’goni. It is difficult to describe the otherworldly sounds Myers conjures from the traditional African harp, but, at times, it sounds as though he has an entire African tribe playing along with him. Remember, the group’s debut album and the result of two-years of experiments and recording sessions, is now available from their website.
The other night, some friends and I were discussing the geography of the contemporary psych revival. It’s obvious that, while places like San Francisco and Bushwick will probably be on your radar, others such as Minneapolis or Kentucky are more likely to be left off. Jovonates, one of the latest additions to Woodsist’s Hello Sunshine subsidiary, hail from Lexington, KY, where they recorded their new LP Things Are Different Here in the back of a local skateshop. On the album, Jovonates journeys through stoned-out kraut grooves reminiscent of Neu! or Can, while laying atop space guitar riffs and cyclical psych trances in the vein of Ash Ra Tempel. The album drops October 11 on a limited 500-edition vinyl release, but until then you can watch the video for one of the songs below. Pre-order Things Are Different Here via Insound.
Before heading off to Europe on their fall tour, Austin’s Pure X released a new video for “Surface”—one of the highlights off this year’s Pleasure LP. The hauntingly eerie video is directed by Malcolm Elijah, who also plays in Silent Diane.
Local North Carolina taper Dan Schram recently caught our ear when we stumbled across his War on Drugs recordings up on archive.org. To add to that, Mr. Schram posted another one of our favs earlier today with when he shared his excellent recording of Megafaun’s performance at the Cats Cradle in Carrboro, NC from September 22. This hometown show for the band comes off their recent tour in support of their new self-titled release out now on Hometapes. Below, listen to “Real Slow” or download the entire show via archive.org. Also, be sure to check out Dan’s archive page for lots more great recordings.
MP3: “Real Slow” (9/22/11)
[Photo by Jessica Amaya]
While on tour over in Europe, The War on Drugs stopped by Bowlegs studio in the UK for a session with the amazing videographers at 4Eyes. In the video, the Drugs show their jammy side by combining the entire session into an extended three-song segue featuring “Your Love Is Calling My Name” > “The Animator” > “Come to the City.” Check it out below and pick up their new long player Slave Ambient out now on Secretly Canadian.
Since we’ve been revisiting cassettes on twitter today, what better way to keep it going that to dive into a digitized cassette rip, right? Well, earlier this year when Matt Mondanile (aka Ducktails) announced his Kickstarter project to fund his Killin the Vibe 12″ release, he offered those who pledged $30 or more a limited cassette featuring unreleased Ducktails songs. That cassette leaked over the weekend, and can now be streamed below. It features several typically lo fi songs from Ducktails, ripe with pitch shifts, hiss and all the other things that make tapes so great. You can purchase more of Ducktails music via his Bandcamp site.
A second song has emerged off Real Estate’s forthcoming sophomore release, Days. “Green Aisles” is the song formerly titled “Careless” and referred to by band members as “Cat Man” (don’t ask). Days is out October 18 on Domino. Also, be sure to check out the previously released “It’s Real.”