Latest Blog Posts

by Michael Franco

1 Jul 2010


“In “Sweet Talk, Sweet Talk”, A.C. Newman cautiously lays a melody over a stuttering chord progression before the song’s chamber pop explodes into ‘70s guitar rock, with Case’s ethereal voice lifting the song into the atmosphere before it falls back down into Newman’s meticulous verses. If, perhaps, George Martin would have produced Cheap Trick, the result might very well have sounded like this.”—review of Together by Michael Franco

by PopMatters Staff

1 Jul 2010


From UK director Paul King, Bunny & the Bull is a deliriously offbeat, heartfelt comedy about love and disillusionment, following a disastrous trek around Europe taken by a pair of goofy friends. A festival favorite, and winner last year of a British Independent Film Award, Bunny & the Bull is now playing nationwide exclusively on demand via IFC in Theaters.

Synopsis: Bunny & the Bull is a road movie set entirely in a flat. Stephen Turnbull hasn’t been outside in months. Living with a painfully restrictive routine, he refuses to interact with the world or think about the past. When a sudden infestation of mice forces him to change his ways, he finds his mind hurtling back to the disastrous trek around Europe he undertook with his friend Bunny, a womanising, gambling-addicted booze-hound. Unable to stem the flood of memories, Stephen’s flat becomes the springboard for an extraordinary odyssey through landscapes made up of snapshots and souvenirs, from the industrial wastelands of Silesia to the bull fields of Andalusia. A story of love, disillusionment, stuffed bears and globalised seafood, Bunny & the Bull is an offbeat and heartfelt journey to the end of the room.

by PopMatters Staff

1 Jul 2010


Wavves’ new release King of the Beach had their digital release bumped up to today. You’ll have to wait until 3 August to pick up the CD. The band previews “Super Soaker” from the album in this video. You can hear the full live session on Sirius.

by PopMatters Staff

1 Jul 2010


The Books
The Way Out
(Temporary Residence)
Releasing: July 2010

The Books have jumped from Tomlab to Temporary Residence for their upcoming album. On their Tumblr page, they claim that placing the new record was frought with difficulties: “Finding a home for this record was a pain in the ass. Everyone I’ve played it for says it’s our best, most daring record yet, and still, all of the labels we admired that we thought would go for it wouldn’t touch it.” The band has given us an early taste with the MP3 of “Beautiful People”.

by John Garratt

1 Jul 2010


Earlier in June, saxophone legend Fred Anderson had suffered a heart attack and then fell into a coma in a Chicago hospital. He died soon afterwards, he was 81 years old.

The word “legend” gets overused all the time, especially by us music writers who happen to like jazz. It’s about as difficult to define as, say, “classic”. And although Anderson’s name will probably not reach household status like Charlie Parker’s anytime soon, it’s safe to say that modern jazz would have been very different had he never been born. Fred Anderson spent most of his life and career being a big fish in a big pond, lending a hand to his contemporaries (Joseph Jarman, the AACM) while schooling the newbies (Ken Vandermark, Nicole Mitchell, George Lewis, Hamid Drake). With such a far-reaching influence, Anderson has supplied us with a lifetime’s worth of hard-bop, avant-skronk, free-jazz disciples. His death may sadden us, but he already took measures to make sure we wouldn’t be empty without him.

My first and so far only visit to the Velvet Lounge, Anderson’s live music club in Chicago, was in early 2008. As I watched Dushun Mosley’s band tear through their second set of the night, my brother nudged me and said “that’s Fred Anderson taking door money over there.” He had arrived sometime after I had that evening, and his unassuming entrance apparently had done nothing to distract me. His stooped-over figure and slow steps definitely broadcast the fact that he was elderly. But did he set a nursing home schedule for himself towards the end of his life? No way. His 80th birthday was an all-out bash.

The Velvet Lounge’s website has numerous downloadable samples culled from a variety of albums Anderson had appeared on. Just bear in mind that each file is an edited snippet lasting a minute or two.

[Download samples]

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