Thanks for a killer show, Ft. Collins! Here’s last night’s setlist. https://t.co/NwNyg234rc
Ride and The Strokes will be joined by The Black Keys, Patti Smith, The Replacements and more.
Fans and hopeful attendees of Barcelona's Primavera Sound were delighted to discover that the preview app they downloaded was a video game displaying the full line-up for the festival's fifteenth anniversary.
Already announced were Friday and Saturday's headliners Ride and The Strokes, and now they've been joined by a host of other equally incredible artists. Thursday sees The Black Keys leading the bill alongside The Replacements, who are hitting Spanish stages for the first time and Antony and the Johnsons, who've been doing plenty since their last Barcelona gig. Bringing some variation to Thursday proceedings are electronic virtuosos James Blake, Richie Hawtin and Simian Mobile Disco.
Continue reading: The 15th Anniversary Line-Up For Primavera Sound Is Finally Here!
"I never met the old ones" goes the (pretty rubbish) joke that references the The New Pornographers' slightly Puckish choice of name. They're in fact the opposite of what you might perceive from the handle: far from being sleazy or discrete, the Vancouver collective are smart without being highbrow, prosaic, charming and rhapsodic all at the same time.
Unfair as might be, comparisons between them and fellow Canadians Arcade Fire have been drawn in the past. If, however, as a unit they were feeling any contrived sense of pressure after a four year absence since their last release 'Together', there are no signs of it here. The main reason for the prolonged gestation was in fact largely due to the compressed schedules of the band's various members, of whom the likes of Neko Case and Dan Berjar have side line careers as solo performers or as part of other successful groups. Lead singer A.C. Newman is no slouch himself of course; a writer with a trio of his own albums under his belt and of whom 2009's 'Like A Hitman, Like A Dancer' is a perennial favourite. In any event, 'Brill Bruisers' is now here with us, a record which seems unlikely to diminish The New Pornographers' upward momentum.
Newman has admitted that he's comfortable about the album title's ambiguity - with it's connotations of both confident pugilists and the original 60s hit factory - but, more tellingly, also that of the shadow cast by ELO, the English group which annexed pop music in the mid to late 1970s via minor epic songs such 'Mr. Blue Sky' and 'Sweet Talkin' Woman'. Their direct influence here is most keenly felt on 'Fantasy Fools', with it's multi-tracked vocals (from Newman and Case), sky-scraping chorus and rabble rousing dynamic.
Continue reading: The New Pornographers - Brill Bruisers Album Review
British Columbia's finest proponents of Indie power pop deliver a marvellous fifth studio album. 'Together' is the follow up to 2007's 'Challengers', an album that although very well received only charted at 156 in the UK. So are The New Pornographers still a rather well kept secret that the discerning listener of well crafted, jaunty intelligent pop don't want you to share in?
The Vancouver based band are a collective of artistically fertile and prolific musicians. The two main singer song writers on Together, A.C Newman (Allan Carl to his family) and Dan Bejar have indulged in either solo work in the case of Newman, or fronted other side projects, Destroyer, Swan Lake and Hello, Blue Roses in the case of Bejar. Also Neko Case, the American that once graduated under the Maple Leaf and who shares some vocal duties, has her own acclaimed solo sidelines. It's fair to say that writers block, stage fright, or creative exhaustion have so far not appeared to bother the band.
'Together' by The New Pornographers is a band of ghosts who are mining their fin de siele imagery for all it's worth' apparently! Oh yes 'They don't use drum machines' and 'They do love a windmill.' Tie all that together with the band being named after a 1966 Japanese film 'An Introduction To Anthropology' set in Osaka and you may get some idea of why Dan Bejar, for one, has been cited for being cryptic. Accessibility is both their barrier to some and their USP to many others.
The band have said to have drawn on influences from The Cars and Cheap Trick to arrive at their sound. This tells only part of the story as 'Their' sound is now so evolved from their influences that some contemporary or alternate comparisons are more relevant. The eloquent, catchy and clever pop now has more commonality with the likes of Rilo Kiley, Teenage Fanclub, Belle And Sebastian, Echo Belly and Ben Folds. The solo work of Newman being compared to that of Ray Davis is born out once again here in the quality of his lyrics and ability to deliver a fabulous tune to boot.
'The Moves' breaks us in to the twelve set piece. It's string heavy nods to chamber pop with 'Lots of cello' and harmonised vocals tease you as an appetiser to the magnificence about to be served. 'The Crash Years' , not a song about the recent reformation of the Primitives, the questionable David Cronenberg film or the Oscar winning Matt Dillon L.A focused movie, but a song about 'You' a composition, containing all of about 20 words, from the 1975 Extra Texture album by George Harrison! Whatever the reasoning there is no doubting the brilliance, especially the sing-a-long chorus and Peter Gabriel esc whistling. 'Your Hands Together' maintains the extremely high quality and when it kicks in at 1m10s & again at 2m30s you'll be sure to be skipping about the room. 'Silver Jenny Dollar' lightens the pace but gives plenty to be thankful for 'We were only ever passing through, Cartilege and Sinew was the name of our act.' 'The Shepherd' is a piano lead more reflective number. With yet another joyful chorus set within the dynamics of a cleverly constructed song it works on many levels especially lyrically........
The improv's polished into working script,
We stare in wonder at the steps we skipped,
Tripping wires we have so carefully crossed,
The science behind it at a perfect loss.
'What Turns Up In The Dark' is the long awaited answer to the perpetual question 'What's love?' Track #9, 'Valkyrie and the Roller Disco' has the auspicious distinction of the best song title on the album. At its centre a darker more troubled protagonists theme is still terrifically evocative 'You stand in the puddle of the disco balls glow.'
Together falls short of finishing with the same heady delights that are encountered in its first half but nevertheless still delivers throughout, with the possible exception of 'Daughters Of Sorrow'. The awkward song never really gets going, it's never quite sure of itself. The closer, 'We End Up Together', about 'family dynamics' rescues the set. The interwoven dueted vocals, strings and skipping beat rounding off the album with an understated air of confidence in their achievement and ability.
The New Pornographers, aided by The Dap Kings, Zach Condon from Beirut, and Will Sheff of Okkervil Rivers, among others, have produced a great album full of proper pop. Their aim to make their songs 'A surgical intervention for punture-wounded civilians everywhere' is well intended and deserving of much credit. (Can't really explain why but the album kept reminding me of the film Reality Bites)
You can catch them live at the Electric Ballroom, London, on 19th May or failing that they are on the line up for Lollapalooza this year. You could do a lot worse than to give them a quick spin.
Thanks for a killer show, Ft. Collins! Here’s last night’s setlist. https://t.co/NwNyg234rc
.@frontpersonband, the new project from our bandmate Kathryn Calder, has another new music video you can watch now!… https://t.co/R9PxH3mhm3
We, alongside many of our peers, have signed a petition to #SaveTheShowbox because of its importance to the Seattle… https://t.co/mfVVnFc8rt
The Showbox in Seattle is one of our favourite venues and we actually shot the cover to Whiteout Conditions on The… https://t.co/5VUe7NWyaW
Fort Collins! We’re so excited to tell you we’re coming to @WashingtonsFoCo this September 15th! Tickets go on-sale… https://t.co/bvI0SiQxYi
Watch the new music video for "Tick-Tock (Frontrunner)" by @frontpersonband, the latest project from our very own K… https://t.co/KEQ05iVijo
WOW! “Letter From an Occupant” included in @RollingStone’s list of the 100 greatest songs of the century so far! https://t.co/vxd1naCu22
Chicago, don’t miss out tomorrow! We’ll be performing at @ThaliaHallChi with @BrettNewski, only a few tickets left.… https://t.co/f8No4Bt4pH
Check out this amazing video of @Justin_Peck tapping along to “Adventures In Solitude.” Easily our favorite tap dan… https://t.co/cYyfg9Hiyw
Toronto! This Friday, we’re playing a FREE show at @YDSquare! We go on at 9pm, we can’t wait to see you there. More… https://t.co/NXL5YIYkkT
Happy release day @NekoCase! ‘Hell-On’ is out now, you can listen to it here: https://t.co/JI4o7Ore8V https://t.co/SulDtk51cn
We’re counting down the days to @Area506fest! Can’t wait to see you Saint John, it’s going to be a lot of fun. Tick… https://t.co/cEaV9qsmTI
We hope you have a great Memorial Day weekend! From today until Monday, all apparel and posters in our store are 20… https://t.co/4ISj2DZkCu
Hey Toronto, we’ll be playing a free show at @YDSquare’s Block Party this summer! Everyone’s invited, see you June… https://t.co/YSzTL4qFe4
@ACNewman’s latest track “Angry Universe” is part of @HTTTGAP’s soundtrack, which is out today! https://t.co/67OL1FLpBY
Electric Version turns 15 years old today! Revisit the album @RollingStone named one of the 100 best albums of the… https://t.co/b3SBGEe9ja
Our show in Evanston has sold out! Didn't get a ticket? We'll be in Chicago on June 21st, performing at the great… https://t.co/6BLOWwipfE
Not all is unlucky this Friday the 13th. All tees in our store are $13, today only! https://t.co/luHxJ9IC7N https://t.co/1CYkaL70jF
We’re all very happy to announce that we’ll be at this year’s @area506fest! See you in August, Saint John!… https://t.co/U6loo82ivJ
Evanston! We’re excited to be performing at @TemperanceBeer on June 22nd! Tickets go on sale this Friday!… https://t.co/XDXqMvXHtm