Willy Mason Emotionally Torn

I don't know much about Willy Mason but the two things I do know are kinda interesting:

(1) Conor Oberst discovered him and put out his album on his label.
(2) He's opening for the Decembrists at Irving Plaza.

Why is that interesting? Because Colin Meloy of the Decembrists took a shit all over Conor in the Seattle Weekly. Some of the nuts in the turd were calling him "a little shallow and emotionally and creatively corrupt."(BURN!) and crediting conor's success to the fact that he's "really, really hot".

Time to choose your pasty, pretentious overlord, Willy.


Malkmus Single Review


"Post-Paint Boy", available on iTunes, is the first single from the new SM (sans jicks) album 'Face the Truth'. Not to get all pitchforky and start out on a tangeant but I saw an interview with George Lucas recently who said that the remainder of his career will be spent making movies for himself, that no one else will like. Regardless of the fact that George has already been making movies no one likes for twenty years, he has a point. He has a billion dollars and no amount of failed experiments will tarnish his legacy.

So in my court, as in many, Stephen is an indie-cred billionaire. He has released two albums since Pavement with the air of a musician doing what feels right to him. With success, he slowly went from cool geek to confident, less-interesting guy. His crafted, inspired weirdness has been subjugated to rare appearances on B-sides("Polish Mule" "Fractions and Feelings"). Instead, he indulges in a nine-minute guitar jam. His lyrics shed any enigmatic charm to wear their absurd meaninglessness as a badge. And track after track his vocals obey the speed limit. Perhaps he just got sick of Mark E. Smith egging his house for ripping him off.

The fact that a song this pulled back is the new album's first single is a bad sign for 'Wowee Zowee' fans. It's a tough sell in a time of such exciting new music because I just can't bring myself to grow up with Stephen when I'd rather be clinging to youth with Kele Okereke.

As a Stephen fan I am obliged to say 'Good for Malk'. As a music fan though, it's hard not to wish he were still sharpshooting my very specific tastes. They are tastes that he's hugely responsible for winnowing down.

But what do I know? I've been building Katamaris in an apartment that smells like corned beef and Icy Hot all night.


News from the Interweb 3-27

I noticed the Magnetic Fields song “One April Day” on a Sprint Commercial which I think is great. It probably paid the rent for Stephin's Williamsburg recording studio for the next two years. And maybe the high concept of his next album will be text-message heartbreaks.

Rilokiley.net has a downloadable new song called "Pull Me In Tighter" from an XM Radio stream. They have some new tour dates but are skipping our little burg.(UPDATE: Two shows at Webster Hall)

Bishop Allen is one of my favorite local bands. They are brainy kids who pledge allegiance to quirkiness and catchiness and toss a quarter in the guitar cases of the Talking Heads and the Kinks on every track. They released a brilliant album two years ago and apparently are shopping their second around. They play at Mercury Lounge and Brooklyn venues frequently and judging by recent shows, the second album Clementines will be no less brilliant. They also apparently provided the soundtrack to, and starred in an indie romantic comedy called Funny Ha Ha which looks pretty interesting. Watch the trailer, catch it in theaters or buy the DVD and let me know if it's decent.

Amid a torrent(pun intended) of Next Big Things bands, there has been zero buzz about the new Stephen Malkmus album and show at Irving Plaza which has been on sale for two weeks without selling out. Apparently you got to pay your dues after you pay the rent too.

Entertainment Weekly's review of SXSW highly recommended the Blood Arm and I'm digging the crap out of their downloadable song "Do I Have Your Attention?".

Still no word on my most anticipated project of '05, the Isaac Brock produced Wolf Parade album. Me wantey.


The Bravery @ Rothko





K-Rock hosted this pajamajam for $9.23 and gave two free MGD's to each entrant. That was mighty nice of them and I mentally forgave them for being a terrible radio station. Once the room was filled with buzzed hipsters, a band called Action Action(thank me for not linking) took the stage to remind everyone that K-Rock cannot tell the difference between rock music that is the shit and rock music that is shit. The bassist actually mimed slitting his own throat with his bass.

The Bravery did not disappoint at all. The good thing about overhyped indie bands is that even if they aren't the second coming they're usually still a great band. Probably because there aren't publicists involved. That's why the whole Arcade Fire backlash never really took. As sick as you were of hearing about them, you couldn't escape how good the cd was.

Whether or not the Bravery blow up, they wrote a great album and deserve the buzz. They could even be the American Franz Ferdinand. They did just announce a May 16th show at Irving Plaza.

I was hoping for a good Celebrate Brooklyn show in Prospect Park this summer and the New Pornographers answered my prayers. It's Saturday, June 25th and I'm guessing it will be free. Gotta love that bandshell.


Go! Team @ Canal Room

I’d never been to the Canal Room and it kind of felt like a place for sweet people. It wasn’t too crowded and had good sound though. Judging by other blog reviews, this sounds like it was the best out of their three NY shows(and the cheapest if you avoided the $6 beers).

This band demands that you dance, literally and figuratively. It was hard to feel light on my feet having just eaten at Corner Bistro, but the show was very fun. A lot of people were surprised the horns were prerecorded, and some live brass would be nice, but I can’t complain. I have a feeling next time around we will get to see them with a full horn section, from the back of Webster Hall.

John Cameron Mitchell, actor/writer/director of Hedwig and the Angry Inch, was there. I had just hours before seen his video for "First Day of My Life” by Bright Eyes. I think it’s one of the best indie videos I’ve seen.

Bright Eyes and the Faint are playing five shows in May at (ugh) Webster Hall.

Gonna rush home after work and try to get in a disco nap before F-training it to Rothko to see the Bravery, one of this season's 76 "Next Big Things".