Thursday, February 26, 2009

New Wilco Album Arriving in June

Wilco's newest album is scheduled to hit stores in June and I simply cannot wait. For those fans who need something to tide them over before the album drops, the band will be releasing its first live concert DVD appropriately titled "Ashes of American Flags" in April.
The yet-to-be-titled album does have a few song titles. "Wilco the song" which was debuted on the Colbert Report will certainly be on the album as well as "Deeper Down", "My Country Has Disappeared", "Sunny Feeling", and "One Wing".
Austin Scaggs of the Rolling Stone Smoking Section blog previewed some tracks , and had this to say: "Let's just say that the record is sick!" Also: "Great melodies, great lyrics, great playing and great sounds. You're gonna dig it!"
I'm sure we will Austin, I'm sure we will.

Here's the trailer for the upcoming DVD, needless to say it looks sick, and potentially hilarious.

In case you have yet to see the brilliant documentary "I Am Trying To Break Your Heart" here's a killer version of "I'm Always In Love", a Wilco classic

Ticketmaster/Live Nation Merger Hits Roadblock

Yesterday the Justice Department's anti-trust hearing for the Ticketmaster/Live Nation merger took place. Thankfully for all of us, some serious setbacks took place and hopefully will lead to the elimination of this potential merger. Both Utah and New York's senators were skeptical of the merger and of TM/LN sketchy business practices and highly inflated ticket prices. The main issue that was raised in the hearing was in regards to TM's professional scalping site "TicketsNow" which has continued to screw over ticket purchasers. In one major instance, fans trying to purchase Bruce Springsteen tickets were re-routed to TicketsNow and its highly inflated prices, while Ticket Master STILL HAD TICKETS AVAILABLE! What's more, this major error occurred again with Leonard Cohen tickets being released early on TicketsNow while not yet on sale at Ticketmaster. Fans looking to buy tickets to No Doubt's reunion tour were also re-routed to TicketsNow.

As a frequent concert-goer myself I personally can't stand buying my tickets from Ticket Master. The convienence fees are simply ridiculous, often 1/3 of the ticket price themselves making a potentially cheap ticket pretty damn expensive. Hopefully the Justice Department will see that this huge merger would be a bad idea and will nip it in the butt.

Friday, February 20, 2009

Duncan Davies Trio Interview

In a few weeks I will be interviewing the Duncan Davies Trio. Davies has recieved a fair amount of fame due to his cameos on MTV's "The City". That being said, his music and the rest of the band which is made up of Lewis Spring and Liam Cohl on drums and bass respectively, is quite fantastic. Check back soon for the interview, it is sure to be a good one.
Check out some of the tunes from the Duncan Davies Trio EP
Here's a video of Duncan playing with Chase Cohl (sister of Liam)

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Pitchfork Media & ABC News

I just read on that ABC news will be hosting a new segment called "New Music Monday". On this segment Pitchfork Media writers will share an album they have reviewed. ABC news will subsequently interview the reviewed artists and talk about their album. I think this NMM is a great idea because it is another step in the direction towards a new market model for the music industry. People in the musical know will now be responsible for indie rockers and the like to be featured on a popular television news show which will be broadcasted to millions around the world. Wow!

More Festival Announcements

The summer festival lineups just keep on rolling in. Today Mountain Jam (which is situated just outside of New York) added some big additions to their already stellar lineup which features:
Gov't Mule
Allman Brothers Band
Michael Franti & Spearhead
Umphrey's McGee
Coheed and Cambria
Derek Trucks Band
The Hold Steady
Bill Kreutzmann w/ Oteil Burbridge & Scott Murawski
Richie Havens
Girl Talk
Gene Ween Band
Karl Denson's Tiny Universe
Jackie Greene
Railroad Earth
Tea Leaf Green
Porter Batiste Stoltz
Brett Dennen
Eric Krasno & Chapter 2
The Lee Boys
Marco Benevento Trio
The Macpodz
The Brew
Alberta Cross

The Sasquatch Festival (at the legendary Gorge Ampitheatre in Washington) lineup also arrived today, and is a little more indie oriented but definitely has some huge acts.
Jane's Addiction
Kings of Leon
Nine Inch Nails
Ben Harper & Restless7
Yeah Yeah Yeahs
Erykah Badu
The Decemberists
Fleet Foxes
TV on the Radio
Animal Collective
Silversun Pickups
Bon Iver
Of Montreal
Explosions in the Sky
Peter Bjorn & John
Gogol Bordello
M. Ward
The Avett Brothers
Grizzly Bear
Girl Talk
The Gaslight Anthem
The Walkmen
Chromeo (DJ set)
Sun Kil Moon
Airborne Toxic Event
Blitzen Trapper
The Wrens
King Khan and the Shrines
St. Vincent
Passion Pit
John Vanderslice
Bishop Allen
Blind Pilot
AA Bondy
Black Moth Super Rainbow
The Knux
Ra Ra Riot
The Dodos
Beach House
Arthur & Yu
The Submarines
Owl City
Viva Voce
James Pants
Mt. St. Helens Vietnam Band
The Builders & the Butchers
The Duchess & the Duke
Natalie Portman's Shaved Head
Dent May & His Magnificent Ukulele
School of Seven Bells
Death Vessel
Horse Feathers
Point Juncture WA
The Pica Beats
Loch Lomond
Vince Mira
Zach Galifiankis
Demetri Martin
Tim & Eric Awesome Show Great Job
Todd Barry
Jon Benjamin
God's Pottery
People's Republic of Komedy

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Marco Benevento - Me Not Me

Marco Benevento plays favourites, and chances are some of his favourites are your favourites too. “Me Not Me” covers classics like Led Zeppelin and Leonard Cohen, but it also focuses on indie rock like My Morning Jacket and 80s dance kings, The Knife. “Me Not Me” is Marco’s second solo record and it is dense. It’s a kaleidoscope of sounds, both psychedelic and classical. It truly displays Marco’s whimsical personality which can be both silly and serious. His jazz chops are on full display on his original piece “Mephisto”, and his progressive songwriting shines on “Now They’re Writing Music” which Marco claims the circuit bent toys wrote themselves. But let’s give credit where credit is due. Marco Benevento is the current king of modern day jazz piano and one listen to this album will explain why.

Check out the brilliant promotional video by our friend Karina Mackenzie over at Shine A Light Productions (

Here is one incarnation of the Marco Benevento Trio featuring Marc Friedman of The Slip on bass and Josh Raymer on drums playing My Morning Jacket's "Golden" and Marco's original "Bus Ride" from the album "Invisible Baby" released in 2008.

Live Nation & Ticketmaster Merger Confirmed

I reported a few days ago that Live Nation & Ticketmaster were planning a merger. Well now its official, the two companies will combine to create Live Nation Entertainment. Yes, a monopoly will be created on the ticketing industry and yes, anti-trust issues will be raised. Bruce Springsteen has commented on the merger saying "“The one thing that would make the current ticket situation even worse for the fan than it is now would be Ticketmaster and Live Nation coming up with a single system, thereby returning us to a near monopoly situation in music ticketing. If you, like us, oppose that idea, you should make it known to your representatives.” We will have to wait and see what effects this merger will have on the public.

Monday, February 9, 2009

Live Nation & Ticketmaster Expected to Merge

The NY Times reported today that Live Nation and Ticketmaster are expected to merge in the very near future. Although the merger will only lead to $50 million in annual savings, a mere 1% of combined operating costs, the real reason for the merger is likely to eliminate major competition. Live Nation recently opened its own ticketing outlet, posing a serious threat to Ticketmaster. Serious anti-trust issues will likely be raised due to this horizontal ticketing aspect of the merger, something that will be left to the Obama administration to regulate. Furthermore, it will be advantageous for the companies to work together in order to help promote artists and fill venues, if their resource pools are combined. Also, Michael Rapino will act as the President of Live Nation Entertainment, no surprise there.

The problems with this merger are plentiful for the mass public. Ticket prices are already outrageously high. Ticketmaster also owns websites that for all intensive purposes scalp tickets at even higher prices to the public. With 1 major ticketing company potentially emerging, whose to say they won't raise ticket prices even higher! They could combine their "convienence charges" and charge even more than they already do. Hopefully with the lack of major competition, Live Nation Entertainment will lower their ticket prices, now that they will be the one stop shop for all concert tickets.

The McLovins TV Debut

The McLovins, the most blogged about band since Vampire Weekend, well not really, but they have gotten a fair bit of attention from and a few other big websites, made their teleivision debut in late January. They played their original "Purple Trees" quite confidently. They even threw in a "Tweezer" tease at the end, very ballsy. Check out the video and let's see if these guys go places.

The Grammys 2009

Although I didn't watch the majority of the Grammys for obvious reasons, I did tune in and out in an attempt to catch Radiohead play. I caught a few performances including "The Rap Pack" which featured M.I.A. who looked like she was absolutely ready to burst at any given second. I truly believe she agreed to perform on her due date because if she did go into labour on live television, the rest of the Grammys wouldn't have mattered. Every headline on every website, newspaper and blog today would have been about M.I.A. Luckily for all of us she made it through the performance. Unlucky for her, the performance, like 99% of all live hip-hop performances stunk. Having Lil' Wayne, Kanye West, Jay-Z, and T.I. on stage at once as hip hop's answer to Dean Martin's "Rat Pack" could not have been a worse idea. 4 of hip hop's biggest egos on stage at one time? Who in their right mind thought that would be a good idea. I'm sure Kanye hated sharing the stage. Each rapper seemed to be trying to 1 up the next, and it was really just shameful.
The next performance I saw was Sir Paul McCartney featuring Dave Grohel on drums. McCartney played "I Saw Her Standing There" and his voice sounded the worst I have ever heard it sound. It was probably just an off night for the living legend, and every performer is entitled to one. Dave Grohel really added nothing out of the ordinary on drums, but it did appear as though he was having a great time. It was an average performance at best.
Radiohead was the last performance I saw. They brought out the USC Marching Band to add percussion and horns to the incredible "15 Step". The extra drums really helped the already prominent drumline to shine, and Yorke really looked like a rock star out there in his leather coat. It was a fantastic performance of a fantastic song. So much so that I am going to post it here for everyone to watch, just in cased you missed it.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Langerado Cancelled

With the economy to shit, its no big surprise here that this festival was shut down. With Phish and the Dead on tour, who was really going to Langerado this year anyways? Either way let's hope that this festival can return next year because I've heard it was really special in the past. I guess a festival needs some serious headlining acts in this economy to survive.

Bonnaroo 2009 Initial Lineup

Turns out the rumours are true. Phish will be playing, bringing the jam roots back to the legendary Bonnaroo festival. The initial lineup looks fantastic with more artists to be announced as the festi draws nearer.

Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band
Phish (2 Shows)
Beastie Boys
Nine Inch Nails
David Byrne
Al Green
Snoop Dogg
Elvis Costello Solo
Erykah Badu
Paul Oakenfold
Ben Harper and Relentless7
The Mars Volta
TV on the Radio
Yeah Yeah Yeahs
Gov’t Mule
Andrew Bird
Band Of Horses
Merle Haggard
The Decemberists
Girl Talk
Bon Iver
Béla Fleck & Toumani Diabate
Rodrigo y Gabriela
The Del McCoury Band
of Montreal
Allen Toussaint
Coheed and Cambria
Booker T & the DBTs
David Grisman Quintet
Lucinda Williams
Animal Collective
Neko Case
Jenny Lewis
Robert Earl Keen
Citizen Cope
Femi Kuti and the Positive Force
The Ting Tings
Robyn Hitchcock & The Venus 3
Grace Potter and the Nocturnals
Kaki King
Grizzly Bear
King Sunny Adé
Okkervil River
St. Vincent
Zac Brown Band
Raphael Saadiq
Ted Leo and the Pharmacists
Crystal Castles
Tift Merritt
Brett Dennen
Mike Farris and the Roseland Rhythm Revue
Toubab Krewe
People Under the Stairs
Alejandro Escovedo
Vieux Farka Touré
Elvis Perkins In Dearland
Todd Snider
Portugal. The Man.
The SteelDrivers
The Knux
The Low Anthem
Delta Spirit
A.A. Bondy
The Lovell Sisters
Alberta Cross