Wednesday, September 22, 2021

Cool, New Song by Parquet Court: "Black Widow Spider"


Cool, New Parquet Courts album Sympathy For Life (Rough Trade/October 22) can be pre-ordered here.

I've been following these guys for a while now. Here's a video I shot of them in Portland in 2013 doing a blistering nine-minute version of their mega-classic "Stoned And Starving":

Here's "Sunbathing Animal" from a 2014 San Francisco show:

Monday, September 20, 2021

Cool, New Music: October 2021 Playlist

Quinn Wilson (Lizzo's creative director) & partner King Princess (musician)


Eddie Vedder, Glen Hansard, Cat Power, Olivia Vedder. Flag Day (Original Movie Soundtrack). Strong songs, even as stand alones without the movie. Eddie's daughter Olivia is a welcome addition.

                                                              Sean Penn in the trailer for "Flag Day"

Amyl And The Sniffers. Comfort To Me. Lively Aussie punk rock. Music to wake up to. Singer Amy Taylor's voice cuts through the bullshit with such authority it's almost frightening. Check out the song "Guided By Angels".

The Felice Brothers. From Dreams To Dust. Nice Americana album from the Brothers.

St. Vincent. The Nowhere Inn (Original Movie Soundtrack). The songs from St. Vincent's mockumentary featuring Carrie Brownstein of Sleater-Kinney and Portlandia. 

Trailer for St. Vincent's "Nowhere Inn" feat Carrie Brownstein

                 "Nobody can sing the blues like Blind Willie McTell..." Bob Dylan

Blind Willie McTell, November 1940. Recording in an Atlanta hotel room with John Lomax.

Bob Dylan. Springtime in New York: The Bootleg Series, Vol. 16 / 1980-1985 (5-Disc Super Deluxe Edition). Some considered this one of Dylan's worst periods, but there are some gems here, like "Blind Wille McTell", Dylan's tribute to the immortal bluesman (1898 - 1959).

                                           Above: "You Was Born To Die" by Blind Willie and Dylan's tribute to him.

Ezra Furman. Sex Education (Songs from Season 3). Glad to see the talented trans artist find a home doing music for the Netflix show Sex Education.

Sex Education, Season 3, Trailer

Herb Albert. Catch The Wind. Loved this lonely trumpeter as a kid. In our house, his 8-tracks played on, infinitely. He also co-founded A&M Records and, at the tender age of 86, he's back with a new album. Great!

Jose Gonzalez. Local Valley. Nice folk sound. This Swede of Argentinian descent sings in three languages, including English.

Shelby Lynne. The Servant. Great covers of some great classics.

Jesca HoopThe Deconstruction Of Jack's House. Nice voice we know from Love Letter For Fire, her 2016 album with Iron & Wine's Sam Beam and her own 2019 release Stonechild.

The Shivas. Feels So Good // Feels So Bad. Retro stoney blissed-out bliss.

Strand Of Oaks. In Heaven. Pay attention to Strand of Oaks.

Georgia State Line. In Colour.

John Sebastian and Arlen Roth Explore the Spoonful Songbook. New, stripped-down versions of Lovin' Spoonful clasics.

Brandi CarlileIn These Silent Days. Not my usual type of artist (country) but I like it.

Kevin Devine. Matter Of Time II

Lucero. When You Found Me

Hoyt Axton. Explodes! Hoyt was a classic. This re-release has him covering the song his mother wrote with Elvis, "Heartbreak Hotel", and a bunch of other cool songs in his inimitable style.

Koerner, Ray & Glover. Blues, Rags and Hollers

                                                      Would you buy a used religion from this man?


Ashley Shadow & Bonnie "Prince" Billy. "Don't Slow Me Down" 

Parquet Courts. "Black Widow Spider". New album out October 22.

Phoebe Bridgers. "That Funny Feeling". A Bo Burnham cover and benefit for Texas pro-choice groups.

Bob Dylan. "House Of The Rising Sun" (1964 Electric version) Classic tune, best known from versions by Lead Belly, Dave Van Ronk, Bob Dylan, & The Animals. In 1964, African-American Producer Tom Wilson ("Like A Rolling Stone") took a 1961 solo acoustic outtake from Dylan's debut album and added an electric band to it, in response to The Animals' full-band version of "House" being a huge hit. This version wasn't officially released until 1995's Highway 61 Interactive CD-ROM, but Wilson tried a similar technique of taking an acoustic folk song and adding a rock backing track (i.e. "folk rock") on "The Sound Of Silence" by Simon & Garfunkel in 1965 (it was a number one hit in January of 1966). Dylan was intrigued by "folk rock" and saw his "Mr. Tambourine Man" go to number one with a folk rock version by The Byrds in 1965.

Big Thief. "Change". A double album coming out in 2022 from this Philly group to watch.

King Princess. "Fell In Love With A Girl" (White Stripes cover)

Mark Lanegan. "Dust Pneumonia Blues" (Woody Guthrie cover from tribute album Home In This World)

Cool, New Music Out Now!!! "I'll Be Your Mirror: Tribute to The Velvet Underground & Nico" feat. Michael Stipe, Sharon Van Etten, Kurt Vile, Courtney Barnett, King Princess, Iggy Pop & Matt Sweeney, St. Vincent, Andrew Bird, Thurston Moore & Bobby Gillespie, Matt Berninger, and Fontaines D.C.

"Like I Used To", Live at Pitchfork 2021, Sharon Van Etten & Angel Olsen


Wednesday, September 8, 2021

Cool, New Big Thief Song: "Certainty"


Pavement Reuniting for 2022 Euro Tour; Can We Get Them to Play North America Too???


Pavement, everyone's favorite band from the 90s, is reuniting to tour Europe in 2022. They were booked to play the Primavera Festival in Spain, but had to cancel in 2000 and 2021 due to COVID. Now they will play Primavera in Spain and Portugal in June 2022, followed by an October/November 2022 swing through the UK, France, Denmark, Norway, Sweden, Germany, Belgium, the Netherlands, and Ireland.

How much would it take to convince them to also do a North American tour in 2022???

We haven't seen Pavement play since 2010, but it was so great, we'd love to do it again.

Here's a video we shot of a mini-Pavement reunion featuring Scott (Spiral Stairs) joining Stephen Malkmus for the Pavement song "Summer Babe" in San Francisco in 2016:

Thursday, September 2, 2021

Cool, New Music Playlist, September 2021



Big Red Machine. How Long Do You Think It's Gonna Last? If you like Bon Iver, The National, Fleet Foxes, and Sharon Van Etten, I guess you'll like this album, since people from all those bands appear on this project. Oh, and someone from Pennsylvania named Taylor Swift too...

Nathan Salsburg. Psalms. "For the Chief Musician. A Psalm of David; when Nathan the prophet came unto him, after he had gone in to Bath-sheba. Have mercy upon me, O God, according to thy lovingkindness: According to the multitude of thy tender mercies blot out my transgressions..." The song "O You Who Sleep" is a tribute to the late, great David Berman (Silver Jews). Nathan, the long-time Alan Lomax archivist, brings friends like Bonnie "Prince" Billy and Joan Shelley (Nathan's partner) to these songs based on ancient Jewish scripture.

Steve Gunn. Other You. New songs from the talented singer-songwriter.

Angel Olsen. Aisles. An excellent 80s covers album.

Ty Segall. Harmonizer. Another great one from the psychedelic guitar fuzz master

Patti Smith. Live At Electric Lady. Her voice is better than ever. It shines on this new live album, which includes a cover of Stevie Wonder's "Blame It On The Sun"; recorded at Electric Lady in 1972 for Talking Book.

Sturgill SimpsonThe Ballad of Dood and Juanita. Light bluegrass, easy as the wind.

Jesse FullerJazz, Folk Songs, Spirituals and Blues. Classic collection from the author of "San Francisco Bay Blues".


Johnny Marr. "Spirit Power and Soul". New single by The Smiths guitarist extraordinaire from a forthcoming double album.

Phoebe Bridgers. "Nothing Else Matters" (Metallica cover). She literally can do no wrong.

Parquet Courts. "Walking at a Downtown Pace". A dramatic come back for a great American band.

Robert Plant & Alison Krauss. "Can't Let Go" (single from forthcoming album, a sequel to their wildly successful 2007 release Raising Sand).

Kevin Morby. "Campfire (4-Track Demo)". Suspected these songs would sound better as stripped-down demos and I think they do.

Bonnie "Prince" Billy. "Brownsville Girl". A 2012 live performance of the Dylan cover is on YouTube. Billy should get an Olympic Gold Metal just for finishing the song and not making a damned fool of himself.

St. Vincent. "Prince Johnny" (Acoustic Live from the Down and Out Downtown After Party)

Waxahatchee. "Talking Dust Bowl Blues" (from the forthcoming Woody Guthrie tribute album Home In This World - out on Elektra Sept. 10th Mark Lanegan, The Felice Brothers, and a bunch of other cool folks are on it too)

Bobby Darin. "Dream Lover" (Demo, Fred Neil on guitar)

Courtney Barnett. "I'll Be Your Mirror". Courtney Barnett has a new album coming out Things Take Time, Take Time (Milk/Nov. 12).Two singles "Rae Street" and "Before You Go" have been released already. This her contribution to a new Velvet Underground tribute album (Verve/Sept. 24), I'll Be Your Mirror...Lou Reed, Nico, Andy Warhol... warmly remembered with a tribute album by contemporary fans:

I’ll Be Your Mirror: A Tribute to the Velvet Underground and Nico Tracklist: 
01. Sunday Morning – Michael Stipe (3:50)
02. I’m Waiting For The Man – Matt Berninger (3:44)
03. Femme Fatale – Sharon Van Etten (w/ Angel Olsen on backing vocals) (4:43)
04. Venus In Furs – Andrew Bird & Lucius (6:55)
05. Run Run Run – Kurt Vile & The Violators (6:59)
06. All Tomorrow’s Parties – St. Vincent & Thomas Bartlett (4:52)
07. Heroin – Thurston Moore feat. Bobby Gillespie (7:24)
08. There She Goes Again – King Princess (3:29)
09. I’ll Be Your Mirror – Courtney Barnett (2:27)
10. The Black Angel’s Death Song – Fontaines D.C. (3:12)
11. European Son – Iggy Pop & Matt Sweeney (7:45)

 ...and a new documentary by Todd Haynes, The Velvet Underground:


The Beatles. "Don't Let Me Down" (First Rooftop Performance) from the forthcoming Super Deluxe version of Let It Be. Amazing to me there are still Beatles performances that aren't well-known. On YouTube you can find George Harrison's "Something" sung by John. And John singing the trad song "Black Dog" they learned from Koerner, Ray & Glover. Of course we're about to hear a lot more about The Beatles "Let It Be"-era (i.e. The End) when Peter Jackson's The Beatles: Get Back is released November 25th: