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by Daniel Ross

9 Feb 2011


It seems the spirit of DIY is well and truly alive still, at least in the wilds of Essex, UK. A region previously most notable for dog racing and some of the worst seaside resorts England has to offer, it’s becoming something of a hub for lo-fi eccentric pop, as exemplified by the thoroughly wonderful Tumbledryer Babies. Taking equal inspiration from their generic forebear Darren Hayman and the impressionistic pop of Phil Spector, this is a peculiarly English mix, and one that we can all experience for free. The band’s (surprisingly large) back-catalogue is available for free download from their Bandcamp page (http://thetumbledryerbabies.bandcamp.com/).

Made up of hubby-and-wife Andrew and Emma Louise Moore alongside bassist (and occasional thingy-hitter) Daryl Worthington, they’ve managed to court the interest of ex-Butthole Surfers Kramer and Paul Leary, who have mixed and produced 7-inches by the band. They’re travelling to SXSW in March so that sunny Austin can have a taste of dank, dreary Southend-on-Sea, so make sure you try to catch them if you’re going. They’ve also got a new record out, again available for free download.

by Eric Allen Been

9 Feb 2011


On Monday, Wilco reminded us via their official Facebook page that they’re hard at work on the follow-up to 2009’s Wilco (The Album). The Chicago-based band confirmed that their eighth LP will be out in 2011 and that a massive tour will subsequently ensue. 

Here’s the post: “Okay just a reminder: Wilco are making a record. It will be out later this year and will be followed by many, many concert dates. To quote Derek Smalls, they shall tour ‘the World and Elsewhere’ beginning in late 2011”.

The first string of tour dates, including some Jeff Tweedy solo shows, are listed below.

by Christian John Wikane

9 Feb 2011


David Pilgrim believes in albums. “Being a child of the ‘70s, I’m married to the album format,” says the Barbados-born, Brooklyn-based singer-songwriter. “If I write ‘singles’ per se, it is by accident. I have always enjoyed the notion of an album as a series of suites, that transport you from one feeling to the next over the course of time, and this album is no different.” Pilgrim applies that sentiment to his forthcoming album, All Things Being Equal, a veritable passport of musical excursions.

Akin to his last solo album, Island Soul (2003), Pilgrim serves up an appealing blend of compositions that reflect his democratic approach to music-making. His sojourns between Barbados, Mali, Ghana, and Senegal over the past five years inform much of the material, as he draws from an eclectic palette that includes ska, R&B, reggae, Afrobeat, hip-hop, and pop. From the serene soundscapes on “Shallow Water” and “These Fragile Days” to the percussive mischief of “Baby Hot” to the rock-infused guitar solo in “Ride De Razor”, Pilgrim sates a variety of musical tastes across the album’s 13 tracks and two bonus remixes. (Listeners might recognize “Older”, “Never Go Home”, and “Belly” from Pilgrim’s work with the Soulfolk Experience on The Soulfolk Experience, Vol. 1 album.)

Some of New York City’s finest musicians join Pilgrim on All Things Being Equal, including V. Jeffrey Smith and Maritri Garrett (his collaborators from The Soulfolk Experience), Shelley Nicole (Shelley Nicole’s blaKbüshe), Jeff Jeudy (I Love Monsters), Ki Ki Hawkins (The Ki Ki Experience), Toni Blackman, Malesha Jessie, Sabrina Clery, Arin Maya, and DJPJ (Paul James). Written, arranged, and produced by David Pilgrim, All Things Being Equal will undoubtedly provide refuge for those seeking a mid-winter escape.

by Sarah Zupko

8 Feb 2011


This Berklee College of Music-trained singer-songwriter has had music in her bones from a very early age, showing a love of singing at the tender age of three whence upon she began recording her young vocalizations with a little hand-held tape recorder. That love never dimmed through the years and followed her through schooling at Berklee, stints opening for Arcade Fire and Broken Social Scene after her move to Brooklyn, and work on a number of film soundtrack compositions. She got her big break when Moby took notice of her work and invited her to work with him on his 2009 album, Wait For Me.

Now just this past year, Scarr has released her solo debut, Piece, a superb album that we lavished praise on back in November with an 8 rating. PopMatters’ Matt James raved, “Piece is a beautiful record. A mesmerising, bewitching début. Amongst its ten tales, there’s nary a dud in sight. It feels timeless, out of time, and could’ve been born in 2010 or 1910. It’ll leave an ache in your heart, for sure. It’s as sad as friendly faces frozen for eternity inside cracked picture frames or once cherished toys gathering dust in the attic. It’s authentic Americana with a whole lotta soul. Scarr’s is a smouldering smoky voice backed by vibrant, elegant playing and enough trinkets and sparkle to fill Aladdin’s Cave. Like the best stories, Piece is one you’ll want to hear over. Don’t let it go unheard.”

Today, we have the pleasure of premiering Scarr’s newest Matthew Nourse-directed video for the tune “Break Up”, a highlight of Piece among many such highlights.

by Eric Allen Been

8 Feb 2011


The upcoming album release schedule just got a lot more appealing. On Monday, art-rockers TV on the Radio announced that their hiatus is officially over and they will be releasing a new LP this spring entitled Nine Types of Light. Specific details about the Dear Science follow-up are currently scarce, but the band is planning to hit the road to support the album. On April 13, they’ll kick off the tour at New York City’s Radio City Music Hall. Tickets go on sale Friday, February 18. Additional tour dates will be announced soon.

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