Monday, December 10, 2018

TiKA, Sydanie, Khadijah Lopez w/ Jully Black (host) @ The Drake Hotel, Monday

Check out TiKA's "Get Up!" and "Goodbyes" w/Desire & Casey MQ below.

Watch the Tess Parks & Anton Newcombe video for "Come Together"

"Come Together" – filmed by Laura Cherrygrove – is off Tess Parks & Anton Newcombe's "Right On" EP out now.

Sunday, December 9, 2018

That time Iggy & The Stooges helped Nico make a promo video

Watch Iggy Pop and pals prance around in face paint for Nico's "Evening Of Light" clip shot by François De Menil.

Chris Coole & Ivan Rosenberg @ The Local, Sunday

Toronto's own Chris Coole and Ivan Rosenberg will be twangin' up a storm at The Local (396 Roncesvalles) from 5pm to 7pm.

Happy Birthday Junior Wells

Remembering the great Junior Wells with a rippin' performance of Messin' With The Kid featuring Buddy Guy from '74. 

Jack O' Fire vs. Joy Division

Jack O' Fire's harp-enhanced transformation of Joy Division's "No Love Lost" into a blues standard is quite impressive.  

Saturday, December 8, 2018

Happy Birthday Willie West!

Cheers to soul great Willie West who turns 77 today! Here are a couple of Willie's typically stellar performances. 

One For The Weekend: Teddy "Sonny Boy" Smith & Lonnie Johnson

Time to get down with Sonny Boy & Lonnie's "Quincy Avenue Boogie" cut in NYC back in 1947. 

Friday, December 7, 2018

Lonnie Holley turns "I Snuck Off The Slave Ship" into short film

Watch the trailer for Lonnie Holley & Cyrus Moussavi's I Snuck Off The Slave Ship which premieres at Sundance in January.  

Ice Cube releases Everythang's Corrupt

The timely "Arrest The President" is off Ice Cube's 10th album Everythang's Corrupt out today via Interscope.

Thursday, December 6, 2018

R.I.P. Pete Shelley of The Buzzcocks, 1955-2018

Pete Shelley passed away today from a suspected heart attack. He was 63. Remembering Pete with The Buzzcocks' Peel Session from 1977.  

The Chills announce first U.S. tour in 22 years

Unfortunately, The Chills haven't yet scheduled any Canadian dates for the current tour which begins in February.  
Following a recent tour of New Zealand around the release of new album Snow Bound (Fire Records), The Chills announce they will be heading to the US for a 14-date tour before heading to Austin for SXSW in March. The new single "Bad Sugar" (listen below) is a song steeped in frustration and the acceptance of others as their beliefs, often religious, help them get by later in life.

On Snow Bound, lost heroes are lamented, relationships are re-evaluated, atonement is sought, mortality is mulled over and fake news is undercut. It’s serious stuff, the thoughts of a dysfunctional 50-something wrestling with maturity and discovering that their post-punk DIY beliefs still have a real voice that resonates between the fans of their early years and which can now pass down to the next generation.

“The Chills are thrilled to finally be returning to the United States for our first proper tour since 1996. It was in America that we had some of our greatest adventures, made our most loyal fans and met people who would become life-long friends while, at the same time, we performed some of the best live shows in our history.

“Yet so few people there have seen the new group which has now been together nearly two decades and is being acclaimed as one of the best line-ups we’ve ever had! I can’t wait for us to bring the States up to date with the ongoing and epic saga of The Chills.“ – Martin Phillipps, December 2018

Watch The Chills' recent video for "Complex" followed by their new single "Bad Sugar" off Snow Bound and the list of upcoming tour dates. Check out Snow Bound right here.

U.S. Tour Dates:
19 Feb: The Bellhouse, NY, US
20 Feb: The Middle East, Boston, US
22 Feb: White Eagle Hall, Jersey City, US
23 Feb: Kung Fu Necktie, Philadelphia, US
24 Feb: The Black Cat, Washington, US
26 Feb: Outer Limits Lounge, Detroit, US
27 Feb: The Empty Bottle, Chicago, US
28 Feb: The Turf Club, Minneapolis, US
2 Mar: The Wayfarer, Costa Mesa, US
3 Mar: The Echo, Los Angeles, US
5 Mar: The Catalyst, Santa Cruz US
6 Mar: The Chapel, San Francisco, US
8 Mar: Dante’s, Portland, US
9 Mar: Sunset Tavern, Seattle, US
11-17 Mar: SXSW, Austin TX, US

Happy Birthday Chris Stamey!

Raising a glass to Chris Stamey on his day with The Summer Sun and his follow-up Greensboro Days. 

Phosphorescent, Liz Cooper @ The Mod Club, Thursday

Watch Matthew Houck and crew play "New Birth in New England" off Phosphorescent's latest album C'est La Vie. 

Phosphorescent on Tour
06 – Toronto, Ont. @ Mod Club Theatre
07 – Northampton, Mass. @ Pearl Street
08 – Boston, Mass. @ Royale
11 – Washington, D.C. @ 9:30 Club
13 – Brooklyn, N.Y. @ Brooklyn Steel
14 – Philadelphia, Pa. @ Theater of the Living Arts
13-14 – North Charleston, S.C. @ High Water
03-05 – Atlanta, Ga. @ Shaky Knees

Wednesday, December 5, 2018

FIDLAR @ The Phoenix, December 13

FIDLAR are releasing their new album Almost Free on Dine Alone. Listen to "Alcohol" below. caption

Last month, FIDLAR announced their highly anticipated third album, Almost Free. Out January 25, preceded by a steady stream of singles over the spring and summer, including "Alcohol," "Can't You See," "Are You High," and "Too Real," and today, ahead of their upcoming Toronto show at The Phoenix on December 13th, they've announced their signing to Dine Alone Records, who will be releasing the album in Canada.

The album was produced by Ricky Reed (Grammy nominated producer for Twenty One Pilots, Phantogram, Leon Bridges), mixed by Manny Marroquin (Rihanna, Imagine Dragons, Bruno Mars, Sia, Kanye West) and mastered by Chris Gehringer (Rihanna, Lady Gaga, Twenty One Pilots, J. Balvin).

Almost Free touches on many of the tragedies and irritations of modern life: existential dread, gentrification, the inescapable sway of the super-rich and the self-involved, post-breakup telecommunication, performative wokeness, the loneliness of sobriety or the lack thereof. But through sheer force of imagination and an unchecked joie de vivre, the L.A.-based band manages to turn feeling wrong into something glorious and essential. In the age of joyless self-care, Almost Free makes a brilliant case for being less careful, for living without fear of fucking up, and possibly embracing any incurred damage as a lucky symptom of being alive.

The album sees the band pushing boundaries into new territory and influences while staying true to their unshakable core. "A lot of the vibe was, 'Well, why can't we do that? Why can't we have horns? Why can't we have key changes? Why can't we have a harmonica loop?',” said lead singer/guitarist Zac Carper. “It was about taking the ceiling off. Having it be limitless. Ain't no rules." Elvis added "Almost Free feels like a step forward for us in a lot of ways. We tried to be true to ourselves and let the music come out naturally, without fear of how people would receive it."

Throughout Almost Free, FIDLAR match their stronger sense of purpose with the ineffable magic that’s always driven them—most notably, that pure and palpable love of playing together. “We were so young when this started, we were just partying and being kids, and FIDLAR took on a life of its own,” says Zac. “I really thought I was going to be working on other people’s music for the rest of my life, and that would be it. In my wildest imagination I never would’ve thought that this all would’ve worked out the way it did—but that’s how life happens in general. That’s the classic story.”

Watch Wu-Tang Clan's Tiny Desk Concert

Check out the 20-minute workout of Wu-Tang classics to celebrate the 25th anniversary of Enter The Wu-Tang (36 Chambers).

Mandolin Orange preview new album with "Golden Embers" video

"Golden Embers" is off the forthcoming Tides of a Teardrop album (due February 1) from Mandolin Orange who play The Phoenix on February 12.

Mandolin Orange Tour Dates:

01 – Durham, N.C. @ Durham Performing Arts Center
02 – Asheville, N.C. @ Orange Peel
04 – Charlottesville, Va. @ Jefferson Theater
06 – Philadelphia, Pa. @ Union Transfer
07 – Washington, D.C. @ 9:30 Club
08 – New York, N.Y. @ Music Hall of Williamsburg
09 – Boston, Mass. @ Royale
10 – Burlington, Vt. @ Higher Ground
12 – Toronto, Ont. @ Phoenix Theatre
13 – Ann Arbor, Mich. @ The Ark
14 – Madison, Wis. @ Majestic Theatre
15 – Minneapolis, Minn. @ First Ave
16 – Chicago, Ill. @ Thalia Hall

07 – Vancouver, B.C. @ Imperial
08 – Bellingham, Wash. @ Mt. Baker Theatre
09 – Seattle, Wash. @ The Moore
10 – Spokane, Wash. @ The Knitting Factory
12 – Missoula, Mont. @ The Wilma
13 – Salt Lake City, Utah @ Commonwealth Room
14 – Fort Collins, Colo. @ Washington’s
15 – Boulder, Colo. @ Boulder Theater
16 – Denver, Colo. @ Ogden Theatre
17 – Santa Fe, N.M. @ Meow Wolf
19 – Phoenix, Ariz. @ Crescent Ballroom
20 – Los Angeles, Calif. @ El Rey Theatre
21 – San Francisco, Calif. @ The Fillmore
22 – Portland, Ore. @ Crystal Ballroom
23 – Boise, Idaho @ Treefort Music Fest

Tuesday, December 4, 2018

Introducing: Ian Blurton's Future Now

Blue Rodeo's Glenn Milchem joins Aaron Goldstein, Anna Ruddick and Ian Blurton in the new heavy rock project Ian Blurton's Future Now.
"Some of you may remember the metal trio without a name I posted about a few months back. Now we’re a quartet and we’re called Ian Blurton’s Future Now. We are a young mom, two dudes with beards and a nerd and we are heavy AF. We will be playing our debut show New Year’s Eve at the Bovine Sex Club with Organ Thieves and Anti Queens." – Glenn Milchem

Andy Kim's Christmas Show @ Queen Elizabeth Theatre, Wednesday

Andy Kim will be joined by Broken Social Scene, Ron Sexsmith & Alex Lifeson on Wednesday which is also Andy's 72nd birthday.

Monday, December 3, 2018

Watch Don Bryant & The Bo-Keys perform "Nickel & A Nail" in Paris

Don Bryant and the Bo-Keys brought the classic sound of Memphis soul to Paris on Friday night – check it out. 

Parquet Courts @ Danforth Music Hall, Wednesday

Check out a couple of clips from the current Parquet Courts tour which hits Toronto on Wednesday.

Billy Eckstine vs. Desi Arnaz

Billy Eckstine joined forces with Pete Rugolo to boldly take on Desi Arnaz in the battle of Babalú. 

Sunday, December 2, 2018

Happy Birthday Michael Stuart

Cheers to Toronto saxophone great Michael Stuart on his day. Here's an overlooked cooker with Hagood Hardy.

Heavenly Sweetness scores again with Ethiopiques 7" Box, Volume 2

Following the success of the first Ethiopiques 7" Box, which sold out its limited pressing run for Record Store Day 2017, Heavenly Sweetness tapped series mastermind Francis Falceto for a suitable follow up. Francis plunged into his impressive collection of Ethiopian records to select six singles/EPs to re-release for Ethiopiques 7" Box, Volume 2.

Along with well-known greats from the golden age of Ethiopian music like Mahmoud Ahmed, Alemayéhu Eshété, Ali Mohamed Birra, there are also outstanding contributions from Muluquen Meléssé, Alayew Mesfin and Seyoum Gebreyes. The box serves as a tribute to the Ethiopian music producer Ali Tango, who originally recorded most of these EPs.

Each of the six seven-inch singles in the box comes in a sleeve reproducing the original Ethiopian artwork along with 6 stickers and a poster. There were only 2,000 copies released so grab it while you can. Listen to a few of the songs following the track listing below.

Ethiopiques 7" Box, Volume 2
Alèmayèhu Eshèté  Tashamanalech
Alèmayèhu Eshèté  Wubé alem
Ali Mohamed Birra  Eshururu
Ali Mohamed Birra  Inyaadi' ini
Ayalew Mesfin         Feqer  aydelem wey
Ayalew Mesfin         Gud Aderegechegn
Mahmoud Ahmed    Ere Mela Mela / Mètché Nèw
Mahmoud Ahmed  Abbay Mado / Embwa Bèlèw
Muluquen Mélléssé  Tezeta
Muluquen Mélléssé  Alagencewhatem
Seyoum Gebreyes  Metch ene terf felegh'u
Seyoum Gebreyes  Muziqa muziqa

Saturday, December 1, 2018

JD McPherson @ Lee's Palace, Sunday

Count on JD McPherson and crew to knock out a few cool yuletide jams from his great new Christmas album Socks out now on New West Records.

Afro disco gems from Pat Thomas & Jon K recirculated by Soundway

Ghana ex-pats Jon K & Pat Thomas were living in London and Toronto respectively when "Asafo" and "Enye Woa" were cut circa 1988.

Friday, November 30, 2018

That time Peter Laughner and Craig Bell played Drome Records in 1976

Check out Peter & Craig performing "Muckraker" at Drome. Yep, that's Cheetah on the left. 

One For The Weekend: Catl

Here's Toronto's own Catl getting down with "Sundown and Slow" off their fantastic new album Bide My Time Until I Die available here

Get yer tickets for Catl's show with the All Seeing Eyes at the Monarch Tavern Dec 21 right here and their NYE show at The Dakota over there.

Thursday, November 29, 2018

Happy 106th Birthday Viola Smith!

Cheers to pioneering drummer Viola Smith who performed at Harry Truman's inauguration in 1949! Check the clips. 

Warehouse find: sealed original Walias Band LPs from 1981

Someone just scored a stash of this Ethiopian gem cut by Hailu Mergia, Girma Bèyènè & Mahmoud Ahmed. Mr. Bongo is selling copies right here.

Townes Van Zandt vs. The Walkabouts

Many folks missed it, but Townes knocked out a great version of The Walkabouts' tune "The Stopping Off Place"

Wednesday, November 28, 2018

Midweek Mixdown: Ernesto Chahoud

Listen to Beirut DJ Ernesto Chahoud's delightful selection of vintage Ethiopian 45s.  

If you enjoyed Ernesto's mix, grab a copy of his excellent Ethiopian singles compilation Taitu out now on BBE. 

Tuesday, November 27, 2018

Happy Birthday Les Blank!

Remembering filmmaker Les Blank with the opening sequence from The Blues According to Lightnin' Hopkins.

Elizabeth Shepherd debuts "Suits & Ties" from her Montréal project

"Suits & Ties" is off songwriter/pianist Elizabeth Shepherd's ambitious Montréal recording and book project. 

Writes Elizabeth Shepherd...

"Five years ago, I set out to interview people - complete strangers that I met on the street, at the market, in the subway - you name it. I asked them to tell me something about their story, their Montreal. I collected all kinds of tales - some humorous, some tragic, some outright bizarre. I then sifted through the interviews and narrowed them down to 11, which I then turned into songs. The bulk are in French, and some are in English. Each song tells someone's story, and refers to a specific location in Montreal. From there, the project exploded; I realized that I could place each of these locations that I was singing about on a map, and that they were all within walking distance of each other. I decided to create a 50-minute walk that, in the time it takes to listen to all 11 songs, would also physically take the listener through each of the places the songs were about - so people can actually walk the album, so to speak."

For those who can't be in Montreal, the 4-time JUNO nominee teamed up with filmmaker Stefan Verna to create what Stefan calls a "visual album" which will be projected behind the band as they play.

While Elizabeth's book about the project comes out with the vinyl release on Feb 8, the Montreal album is available digitally right now. The project charts an informal oral history of the city, focusing on stories that have been largely left out of the official narrative, like the history of jazz and the achievements of Montreal's black community, the gay rights movement which was pioneering in Canada, and much more. Watch the "Suits & Ties" video following the list of Elizabeth's upcoming shows.

Tour dates
November 28: Penticton, BC - The Dream Café
November 29: Canmore, AB - Artsplace
November 30: Calgary, AB - Lolita's
December 1: Saskatoon, SK - The Bassment
February 2: Val-David, QC - Église de Val-David
February 8: Toronto, ON - The Music Gallery: CD, LP and BOOK LAUNCH
February 9: Montreal, QC – Le Ministere CD, LP and BOOK LAUNCH
February 20: Quebec City, QC - TBA
March 7: Cranbrook, BC – Auntie Barb’s
March 8: Kaslo, BC – Langham Theatre
March 9: Vernon, BC – The Vernon Jazz Club

Khruangbin @ Danforth Music Hall, Thursday

Khruangbin have been known to rip through some hip hop jams on tour – check the clip from their Chicago show. 

Monday, November 26, 2018

The Courtneys opening for Cloud Nothings @ The Opera House, Tuesday

The Courtneys are ready for the snow as you'll see in their new video for "Minnesota" off their II album for Flying Nun. 

Third Man reissues A-Square comp of Ann Arbor garage gems

Alex Palao's rippin' A-Square (Of Course) comp featuring MC5's original Looking At You and Half-Life's Get Down has been re-released as a 2LP set. 
A² – An A-Square Compilation
A1:    Look What You're Doing (To Me Baby) - The Rationals
A2:    Get The Picture - The Scot Richard Case
A3:    Love To Love - The Thyme
A4:    I Need You - The Rationals
A5:    Listen My Girl - The Bossmen
A6:    Stranded In The Jungle - The Apostles
A7:    Someday - The Rationals
B1:    I'm A Man - The Prime Movers
B2:    Midnight To Six Man - The Scot Richard Case
B3:    Leaving Here - The Rationals
B4:    Easy Way Out - The Bossmen
B5:    Tired Of Waiting For You - The Apostles
B6:    Who Is That Girl - The Scot Richard Case
B7:    Time Of The Season - The Thyme
C1:    Looking At You - The MC5
C2:    Can't Find The Key - Stoney & The Jagged Edge
C3:    Somehow - The Thyme
C4:    I'm So Glad - The Scot Richard Case
C5:    I Need You - The Rationals
D1:    Rainbows - Stoney & The Jagged Edge
D2:    Get Down - Half-Life
D3:    Borderline - The MC5
D4:    Just Like An Aborigine - The Up
D5:    Mystery Man - Dick Wagner & The Frost

Sunday, November 25, 2018

Happy Birthday Rusty Bryant

Remembering saxophone heavy hitter Rusty Bryant on his day with his classic "Fire Eater" 

Whaddya mean you don't know Tanzania's Mwenge Jazz Band

Check out Farahani Mzee's wicked "Kizunguzungu" cut by the Mwenge Jazz Band reissued by Afro7. 

Saturday, November 24, 2018

Happy Birthday Serge Chaloff!

Remembering baritone sax great Serge Chaloff with his classic Blue Serge album.

Deluxe reissue of David Axelrod's Earth Rot out now

Now-Again's 2LP gatefold version of Earth Rot includes a bonus album of instrumentals. Watch the promo clip below. 

1970’s Earth Rot, the final album in David Axelrod’s Capitol Trilogy, and the first of his solo releases to incorporate choral vocals, set the visionary composer/arranger/produer up for his final stage as an architect of jazz fusion and ensured that his productions would help future architects of hip hop.

Gatefold 2LP contains bonus second album with Earth Rot’s instrumentals, never before released.

This is the third Now-Again issue in a series of reissues centered around Axelrod’s Capitol Trilogy in 2018 – Song of Innocence saw release in April, and Songs of Experience was released in July.

Audiophile reissue, lacquered directly from Axelrod’s original master tapes at Capitol Records by Ron McMaster.

Contains oversized, 28 page booklet that delves into Axelrod’s incredible life and music, replete with never before published photos and an interview with Axelrod by Eothen Alapatt and Waxpoetic’s Brian Digenti. Watch the fascinating interview (below) with David's son Michael who bears a striking resemblance to his father.

Get a complete listing of RSD Black Friday releases in PDF form right here.

That time Dance Stand filmed at The Danceteria

Public access TV show Dance Stand hosted by Carl Bloat shot an episode at NYC's legendary Danceteria in 1983. 

Friday, November 23, 2018

UIC reissues their two classic garage albums via Warner Music Canada

UIC's first two corkers, Our Garage ('86) and Live / Like Ninety ('88) are out now on vinyl and digitally on all platforms!

Warner Music Canada in conjunction with Like 90 Records have just released two Canadian garage-punk classic albums – Our Garage and Live / Like Ninety – from Exeter, Ontario’s UIC. Originally issued in the 1980’s, both albums are now available on all streaming services for the first time as well as being re-issued on CD and vinyl. The band will celebrate the re-release of the records with a show at This Ain’t Hollywood in Hamilton on Saturday (November 24).

Originally formed in 1982 in a basement in Exeter, Ontario, UIC took it’s influences from Detroit radio where The Stooges, MC5 and Alice Cooper dominated the airwaves. The original line-up – Fred “Slack” Robinson, Dave “Smokin” Robinson, Murray Heywood, Ted Triebner and Dan Preszcator – took their name from the Unemployment Insurance Commission (since rebranded Employment Insurance).

After a few years of playing shows in the London area, the band moved to Toronto and became regulars on the bill at the Siboney, the Rivoli, the Horseshoe Tavern and Lee’s Palace, playing alongside the likes of The Gruesomes, Teenage Head and Deja Voodoo.

Our Garage
The band’s debut, Our Garage, was released in 1986 and has been re-mastered for this reissue. To quote Little Steven, “Garage rock/punk is white kids trying to play rhythm & blues and failing wonderfully.” Whether you were from Canada, the UK, Japan, the US or Europe, if you were listening to garage punk, you likely remember UIC. The opening track, “Our Garage,” is an anthem proudly declaring the band’s influences. The band shows their Canadian roots with tracks “Shamrock Bang” and “Crop Dustin” while the fan favourite “I’m Alive” serves up garage rock ‘n’ roll smashed together with rhythm and blues. Buy/download/stream Our Garage right here.

OUR GARAGE tracklisting
Our Garage
Shamrock Sin
Shamrock Bang
Bomb Boys
Nashville Dreamin'
All Together Now
You Drive Mad
I’m Alive
Cure The War
Crop Dustin

Live / Like Ninety
Recorded live at a sold-out Lee’s Palace show on November 4th 1988, Live / Like Ninety is arguably the best UIC album released to date if only because no studio could ever capture the explosive sound of the band live. The album documents the band’s full-speed-madness where they literally played until the tape ran out – you can actually hear the tape slip through the tape machine for the last time and continue snapping around the reel. Live / Like Ninety was voted by NOW Magazine as one of the most influential Toronto albums of the 80’s. The album has been re-mixed and re-mastered for this reissue. Buy/download/stream Live / Like Ninety right here.

LIVE / LIKE NINETY tracklisting
Outta Hand
Altogether Now
Lockjaw Bay
Get Red
Green Lady
Livin' In The Past
Mystery Train
New Race
Bomb Boys
Stations Fading

By the time of disbanding in 1995, UIC had released three full length albums (a fourth ,The Wiseman Sessions, was lost for almost 20 years when the tapes were finally recovered, mixed and released). Over the next few years band members pursued various musical paths and in 1999 four of the five band members joined forces as The Chickens. By 2006, they all went their separate ways.
Flash forward to 2016. UIC, joined by guitarist Dave Dysart, reunite to headline an Oshawa benefit in memory of local rock & roll promoter and Star records founder Mike Shulga. Spurred on by Dysart’s enthusiasm, the band marked the 30th anniversary of Our Garage by playing their first Toronto show in 20 years. The success of those shows inspired a new sense of creativity who have since re-entered the studio to record new material to be released on their own Like 90 Records.
Bringing it all full-circle, UIC, (with bassist Andy Hauber), were able to join the Toronto bill of MC50, the 50th anniversary tour of Kick Out The Jams, the MC5 album that was such a huge influence on the band in the first place.

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