1 TENNIS: Small Sound [EP]
2 DUCKTAILS: Wish Hotel [EP]
3 OF MONTREAL: Lousy With Sylvianbriar
4 LOS CAMPESINOS!: No Blues
5 DR. DOG: B-Room
6 KEVIN DEVINE: Bubblegum
7 YUCK: Glow And Behold
8 POLICA: Shulamith
9 SLEIGH BELLS: Bitter Rivals
10 KING KRULE: 6 Feet Beneath The Moon
11 DEER TICK: Negativity
12 FRANKIE ROSE: Herein Wild
13 MINOR ALPS: Get There
14 COURTNEY BARNETT: The Double EP: A Sea Of Split Peas
15 PARQUET COURTS: Tally All The Things That You Broke [EP]
16 WHITE DENIM: Corsicana Lemonade
17 DIANE COFFEE: My Friend Fish
18 FLATLINERS: Dead Language
19 WOODEN SHJIPS: Back To Land
20 THE BLOW: The Blow
21 PURLING HISS: Paisley Montage
22 NOBUNNY: Secret Songs: Reflections From The Ear Mirror
23 FUZZ: Fuzz
24 LA LUZ: It’s Alive
25 MARIJUANA DEATHSQUADS: Oh My Sexy Lord
26 PHANTOGRAM: Phantogram [EP]
27 MAN MAN: On Oni Pond
28 BLOOD ORANGE: Cupid Deluxe
29 FLASHLIGHTS: Don’t Take Me Too Seriously
30 NOAH AND THE WHALE: Heart Of Nowhere
1 TENNIS: Small Sound [EP]
Last week we spoke with Kevin Devine about his two latest albums (Bubblegum and Bulldozer), his biggest influences, and even got to hear an impromptu cover of Elliott Smith’s “The Biggest Lie”. If you missed the on-air interview, you can listen here!
Last Thursday night Fred Armisen put on one of the coolest variety shows Underground Arts has ever seen. A little bit comedy, a little bit music, and even a little bit of one-on-one conversation, there wasn’t a dull moment throughout.
Underground Arts announced on Facebook that Fred would be bringing “a surprise legendary guitar player” just hours before the show. After an opening musical set by his British SNL character “Ian Rubbish,” then doing some jokes as himself, he soon brought out the truly legendary J Mascis of Dinosaur Jr. The first song they played together was Dino’s “Feel the Pain”. They also played “Massachusetts Afternoon” by the Blue Jean Committee (an SNL sketch which featured Jason Segel on piano) and had the whole crowd singing along to the ridiculous lyrics about apple cider. He ended this portion of the show with “It’s a Lovely Day,” another Ian Rubbish song. Armisen played the song in character on his last SNL performance in May, where many of his musician friends including Kim Gordon, Aimee Mann, Carrie Brownstein, Michael Penn, and Mascis joined him on stage.
In addition to this short but awesome set, the crowd enjoyed previewing clips from the new season of Portlandia that will air “in early 2014” according to IFC’s website, and another surprise musical guest, Kurt Vile!
Towards the end of the show Fred spent a good twenty minutes answering questions from the crowd. His response to a question about whether it’s frustrating working with SNL hosts who are not actors reflected his optimistic and quirky personality: “I’m going to sound like such a wimp, but the idea of greatness is overrated. When someone is great, I’m bored. When something’s a little off, I’m fascinated!”
Words to live by.
To reiterate our Tennis review, Underground Arts is currently Philly’s coolest and most unique venue; if for nothing else, go for the great $2 popcorn they’re now selling at the bar. You can see a list of their their upcoming events here.
By Shannen Gaffney
Shannen: Your latest album Girl Talk came out earlier this year, and you released it on your own label, after crowdfunding and raising money through PledgeMusic. What made you go in this direction?
KN: Well, actually it wasn’t really like a choice. I got dropped from my record label so I had to figure out a way to put out the record. So I decided that’s what I had to do because it was my only option really.
Shannen: Girl Talk has a less polished but more natural, raw sound than your previous work. What was your writing process like for the record?
KN: I was really determined and emotional, and it all just kind of exploded; it all just came out in the record. It was very therapeutic. Writing on the bass was really helpful, that helped changed my sound and it’s just such a fun instrument to play. So I didn’t really think too much about it and it kind of just all came out.
Shannen: So you started a video series where you give your fans advice on various problems. What gave you the idea to start this?
KN: The fans will write and tell me a lot of personal stuff, and I often end up talking to them after shows. I kind of joked about it and then we did a practice one and we really liked that so we were like, ok we’ll do videos and we could have guest stars and stuff. It was just really fun to do.
Shannen: You’re on a U.S. tour right now with La Sera, what’s the best thing about touring with Katy Goodman?
KN: She’s so nice. All of La Sera are really nice, so fun to watch jam. They have a dog called Beau, who’s so cute. They’re just lovely people and I love getting into the music on tour. I think you have to have a band with you that you really like and like to watch before your show. It’s just really fun, yeah.
Shannen: Do you have any favorite tour bus snacks?
KN: Oh my god, we’re really low on snacks but there’s always Cheetos running around like the nuclear orange kind (laughs). Not very healthy.
Shannen: “Rap for Rejection” is definitely a very different style than you’ve done before, but you mix it with your traditional pretty vocals in the background. What made you want to do a spoken word kind of song like that?
KN: I thought it would be funny to do a rap about sexism and feminism. It’s just too funny for me, and I wanted to write about something serious but in a fun, lighthearted way, inspired by the Moldy Peaches, and Smoosh if you know them. They’re these two kids that have a really cool song called “Rad,” that’s just a really funny rap.
Shannen: On record store day last year you put out a really awesome heart shaped 7” with a song dedicated to Pussy Riot. Why did you want to pay a tribute to those girls in particular?
KN: I just feel like… it just seems kind of crazy to me that they were put in prison because of a protest song. I think that it’s important for everybody worldwide to talk about anything that happens that you think is unfair, and raise awareness. Music and freedom of expression is so important and with all the problems in Russia right now, there’s such unfair treatment. It’s really scary, just very government heavy and power concentrated. I just wanted to talk about those things.
Shannen: What can we expect from you in the future?
KN: Um, um um um… I don’t know! I’m kind of unsure about what I’m going to do next. I collaborated with a friend D Wing who makes simple R&B music. His soundcloud is at soundcloud.com/Dwingmusic. I’ve been having fun singing with him. I’m also writing songs for a musical in New York which is really fun, and then one more shoot coming out at the end of this month. I don’t know, like I’m still going to tour a bit more next year I think, and put out a few music videos still haven’t come out yet. I might even write another single for Girl Talk that would be released next year or something just to kind of finish up this record, I think the album deserves that.
By Chris Burrell
Amidst a crazy tour schedule, I was able to get some time on the phone with one of my DJ / producer idols: Dirtybird label boss, Barclay Crenshaw, better known as Claude VonStroke.
CB: Mr. Crenshaw, I’m a huge fan, spin your stuff all the time on air, and I know you’re busy – thanks for you taking the time out to do this call.
CVS: Thank you, no problem.
CB: So you’re on tour now, but you have the night off tonight, is that correct?
CVS: I do, yes, kind of (chuckles).
CB: So you have the night off doing phone interviews and stuff like that, are you on a tour bus in the middle of nowhere?
CVS: No, I’m at home.
CB: Oh okay, and where is home for you these days? LA or San Francisco?
CVS: I’m in LA right now.
CB: OK cool, well how’s the tour been so far?
CVS: It’s been really great.
CB: I follow you on Twitter, and I’ve seen that perhaps you and J Phlip are doing T 25 to stay active on the tour bus?
CVS: (laughs) I am, she’s not!
CB: She’s a sick DJ, how’s she been received as the opening act?
CVS: Great, I think she’s done really well on this tour. Trying to get her on the Europe tour.
CB: I read somewhere that you don’t have a tour manager per se.
CVS: No we don’t, we don’t have a tour manager. I haven’t had one for 10 years.
CB: Have you had any interesting situations on this tour so far?
CVS: Yeah, there was like no bass for like 30 minutes in Denver.
CB: Oh shit! How does the Dirtybird sound go without the bass?
1 OF MONTREAL: Lousy With Sylvianbriar
2 BELLE AND SEBASTIAN: The Third Eye Centre
3 DEER TICK: Negativity
4 DIANE COFFEE: My Friend Fish
5 DR. DOG: B-Room
6 KEVIN DEVINE: Bubblegum
7 KING KRULE: 6 Feet Beneath The Moon
8 DUCKTAILS: Wish Hotel [EP]
9 YUCK: Glow And Behold
10 POLICA: Shulamith
11 PARQUET COURTS: Tally All The Things That You Broke [EP]
12 FUZZ: Fuzz
13 SLEIGH BELLS: Bitter Rivals
14 THOSE DARLINS: Blur The Line
15 THE BLOW: The Blow
16 TENNIS: Small Sound [EP]
17 MINOR ALPS: Get There
18 JESSE WOODS: Get Your Burdens Lifted
19 HEAD AND THE HEART: Let’s Be Still
20 DALE EARNHARDT JR. JR.: The Speed Of Things
21 COURTNEY BARNETT: The Double EP: A Sea Of Split Peas
22 BEST COAST: Fade Away
23 FRANKIE ROSE: Herein Wild
24 MAN MAN: On Oni Pond
25 PHANTOGRAM: Phantogram [EP]
26 CASS MCCOMBS: Big Wheel And Others
27 RUBBLEBUCKET: Save Charlie [EP]
28 DISMEMBERMENT PLAN: Uncanney Valley
29 MAZZY STAR: Seasons Of Your Day
30 LA LUZ: It’s Alive