Tuesday, April 30, 2013

DC's Paperhaus Release 'Helicopters' from Forthcoming Sophomore EP 'Lo Hi Lo' (Out May 28th)

DC's Paperhaus Release 'Helicopters' from Forthcoming Sophomore EP 'Lo Hi Lo' (Out May 28th)
Based on the first track, "Helicopters", from DC's Paperhaus, I'm intrigued as the band sounds somewhat like Michael Hampton's (x-Faith, State of Alert) little-heard but much missed DC post-hardcore band Manifesto. Paperhaus is playing a show tonight in California and is working their way back east but...there are no local area shows scheduled.

Paperhaus released its alt-country styled self-titled EP in 2011, and will release its second effort, an EP entitled "Lo Hi Lo" on May 28th, 2013. "Lo Hi Lo" was recorded at DC's Inner Ear studios with producer Ivan Basuri, and reflects the more pop side of Paperhaus' psychedelic music. A full-length LP of more blues and funk influenced psychedelic music is already in the works and will be released in 2014.

Paperhaus' Spring 2013 Tour Dates:
04.30 • The Bat Cave (Arcata, CA)
05.01 • Valentine's (Portland, OR)
05.02 • El Corazon (Seattle, WA)
05.03 • Bird Stop (Caldwell, ID)
05.07 • GNU: Experience Gallery (Fort Collins, CO)
05.08 • Mouth House (Denver, CO)
05.09 • Side Door Lounge (Omaha, NE)
05.11 • Kitty Kat Club (Minneapolis, MN)
05.13 • Blank Space (St. Louis, MO)
05.14 • Haymarket Whiskey Bar (Louisville, KY)
05.16 • The Other Basement (Nashville, TN)
05.19 • Woodruff's (Ypsilani, MI)
05.20 • Mahalls 20 Lanes (Lakewood, OH)
05.21 • Basement Transmissions (Erie, PA)
05.23 • Anthony's House (Honeybrook, PA)
05.24 • BSP Lounge (Kingston, NY)
05.26 • The Elevens (Northampton, MA)
05.28 • People's Art Collective (New Haven, CT)
05.29 • Radio Bean (Burlington, VT)
05.30 • O'Briens (Boston, MA)

Paperhaus started in a basement in the suburbs of Washington, DC, where guitarists Alex Tebeleff and Eduardo Rivera spent their teenage years playing music together with ears buzzing from Radiohead, Television, and Fela Kuti. Miles away in Philadelphia, the dissonant vibrato of drummer Brandon Moses howled over distorted blues, while bassist John Di Lascio’s three drunken years playing absurdist prog-pop in shady Japanese yakuza bars were winding down.

When the haze cleared, these four musicians found themselves in the Red Door room in DC's legendary Gold Leaf Studios (R.I.P.), screaming raw vocal poetry into rickety old mics and bleeding cosmic noise through rusty tube amps. All night jams edged into anything from CAN to DC Gogo, while haunting noisescapes echoed of Sonic Youth and Scott Walker. Above it all hung country-blues and pop-oriented arrangements with deeply personal lyrics.


Wednesday, April 24, 2013

The Nance (Staring Nathan Lane and Jonny Orsini) - Broadway Show Review / Show Runs Through June 16th

The Nance - Broadway Show Review (Staring Nathan Lane and Jonny Orsini)
When watching Nathan Lane star in the new Broadway play The Nance, it is hard not to make comparisons to Lane’s role in the 1996 film “The Birdcage”. While “The Birdcage” was a ‘feel good’ that ended with (pre-Tea Party) conservative Republican Senator Kevin Keeley (essentially) accepting that his new in-laws are a gay couple, Nathan Lane’s character in The Nance never breaks free of the stereotypes and bigotry of that era.

Douglas Carter Beane's The Nance recreates the raucous world of burlesque's heyday and tells the story of Chauncey Miles (Nathan Lane) and his fellow performers. In the 1930s, burlesque impresarios welcomed the hilarious comics and musical parodies of vaudeville to their decidedly lowbrow niche. A headliner called "the nance" was a stereotypically camp homosexual and master of comic double entendre - usually played by a straight man.

The Nance is a tale of Miles’ struggle to balance his belief that he can find happiness being a part of ‘mainstream/conservative’ New York with his onstage flamboyant persona and his offstage love affair with Ned (Jonny Orsini).  Miles’ strong conviction that both his onstage and offstage personas are a normal part of the social fabric during Mayor LaGuardia’s cleanup of New York and his self-loathing for being unable to be a part of mainstream society leads to him to sabotage both his personal and professional life.  Lane’s comic delivery is dead-on perfect as he puts a veneer of deliciously wicked wit over Miles’ self-loathing.  The audience can see Miles visible struggle with his two personas as he attempts to reign himself in onstage when City License Commissioner Paul Moss is in the audience one night at the burlesque house.  Ultimately, Miles can’t reign in his demons and he ‘turns up’ the nance act for Moss, which results in the theater being closed, and follows this by sabotaging his relationship with Ned.  The play ends where it started – with Miles alone and looking for anonymous sex.  In spite of the play’s bittersweet ending, Lane’s character makes it clear that he has the strength to survive another day.

The Nance opened April 15th and runs through June 16th at the Lyceum Theater (149 West 45th Street).  There are seven shows a week (in addition to Wed– Sat nightly shows, there are 2:00PM shows on Wednesday and Saturday and a 3:00PM show on Sunday) and tickets range from $37 - $127. 


Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Edinburgh's We Were Promised Jetpacks Play Maxwells on June 15th (Closest Show on Brief US Tour)

Edinburgh's We Were Promised Jetpacks Play Maxwells on June 15th (Closest Show on Brief US Tour)We Were Promised Jetpacks released their sophomore album, In the Pit of the Stomach, two years ago and this disc (in my not-so-humble opinion) was one of the best British indie-rock discs that I've heard in quite some time. The BBC described the disc as "powered by an edgy, nervous hunger – a sense of being on the verge of getting exactly what you want but full in the knowledge and with the expectation that it won’t ever actually happen."

We Were Promised Jetpacks will be releasing a live album and tour film this fall and the band is playing a short run of East Coast and Midwest shows in June.

We Were Promised Jetpacks June 2013 US Tour
June 6 - Pittsburgh, PA @ Hard Rock Cafe
June 7 - Cincinnati, OH @ Fountain Square
June 8 - Toledo, OH @ Mickey Finn's Pub
June 9 - Chicago, IL @ Ribfest Chicago
June 10 - Grand Rapids, MI @ Pyramid Scheme
June 12 - Philadelphia, PA @ Morgan's Pier
June 13 - Asbury Park, NJ @ Stone Pony
June 14 - Venna, VA @ Jammin' Java
June 15 - Hoboken, NJ @ Maxwells (Advanced tickets are $20)

We Were Promised Jetpacks

Friday, April 19, 2013

Paul McCartney Reissues Radio-Only Promo of 'Maybe I'm Amazed' (Live) as a Ltd. Edition 12" for Record Store Day (Tomorrow)

Paul McCartney Reissues Radio-Only Promo of 'Maybe I'm Amazed' (Live) as a Ltd. Edition 12 Inch for Record Store DayPaul McCartney's triple-LP Wings Over America (documenting the band's 1976 "Wings Over America" tour) has always been on my list of Top-10 live albums of all time and a deluxe reissue of the disc is due out on May 28th.

For the vinyl geeks, tomorrow (for Record Store Day) Paul McCartney will be issuing "Maybe I'm Amazed" on 12" vinyl. This live version of “Maybe I’m Amazed” was originally serviced as a radio-only promotional 12" vinyl single back in 1976 to herald the release of Wings Over America. Newly reissued exclusively for Record Store Day, it faithfully reproduces the treasured Paul McCartney collectible and features both stereo and rare mono mixes of the classic track only available here.

Paul McCartney

Monday, April 15, 2013

Kopecky Family Band - "Kids Raising Kids" CD Review (ATO Records) // Show at Mercury Lounge on May 16th

Nashville buzz-band Kopecky Family Band (KFB) just re-released their playfully exuberant eleven-track debut disc, Kids Raising Kids, via ATO Records. The new disc mixes foot-stomping orchestral pop with vocal harmonies and ringing guitars that sound straight from the 60’s Laurel Canyon scene.

While the band’s music will strike a familiar chord with fans of music collectives like Broken Social Scene and The Polyphonic Spree, KFB seems more willing to reach beyond the boundaries of the genre than some of their contemporaries and frequently utilize the ‘exploding’ verse-chorus-verse alt-rock song structure that become popular in the 90’s. A prime example of KFB’s balance between multiple genres is found in the first two songs on the disc. “Wandering Eyes” starts out with a melancholy orchestral arrangement, which shortly gives way to an anthemic stomp-along. This is followed by the disc’s first single, “Heartbeat”, which is a slinky dance number that brings back fond memories of DC’s Quix*o*tic. In the second half of the disc, the band throws in elements of shimmery, echo-drenched dream-pop, which help ease the listener down from the colossal high of the disc’s earlier tracks.

The bright, irrepressible songs on Kids Raising Kids deal with navigating waters of change and facing challenges, and also see the band challenging themselves by creating a bigger sound than anything they've done before. In an interview with Pop ‘stache, Kelsey Kopecky said that the “title [of the disc] came from an idea Markus [Midkiff] had. He has a little girl named Ella who’s three and a half and it made us think, it was just that idea of young people having kids. After we started playing with the idea, we realized it was more than that. At heart, we’re all kids raising kids in this world. We’re all in this together with this sharing of experiences."

Kopecky Family Band Tour Dates:


Note: Tickets are $10 and doors are at 9:30PM (late show). Charlotte, NC’s Matrimony is opening the show.

* supporting He's My Brother She's My Sister

Kopecky Family Band

Saturday, April 13, 2013

Blind Melon Release Deluxe Edition of 1992 Debut Album with Five Unreleased Tracks (Out April 16th on Capital/UMe)

After reviewing Blind Melon bassist Brad Smith's last Abandon Jalopy disc, I've been looking for an opportunity go back and give a listen to Blind Melon. The reissue of the band's 1992 self-titled debut may be a good place from which to reassess my (somewhat dated) views of the band's music as this new deluxe edition includes the original 12-track disc plus five bonus tracks from a scrapped session that the band recorded in Los Angeles with Neil Young producer David Briggs (entitled 'Sippin' Time Sessions'). There are some bootleg videos from this session on YouTube and I like what I've heard thus far.

Blind Melon Release Deluxe Edition of 1992 Debut Album with Five Unreleased Tracks (Out April 16th)
Blind Melon’s self-titled 1992 debut album, Blind Melon, featuring the now-iconic “bee girl” on its cover, has been remastered for the first time and expanded with the band’s previously unreleased “Sippin’ Time Sessions” EP for release on CD and digitally by Capitol/UMe on April 16. Creation of the new edition has been overseen by band members Brad Smith and Christopher Thorn. On April 20, a 180-gram gatefold 2LP vinyl edition of the remastered Blind Melon album and “Sippin’ Time Sessions” EP will be available exclusively at Record Store Day-participating retailers.

Blind Melon’s lead single, “No Rain,” became a phenomenon when coupled with the brilliant music video that launched a thousand “bee girl” Halloween costumes. The song broke the fledgling band into major stardom as a No. 1 chart smash on Billboard’s Mainstream Rock and Modern Rock singles charts, and it went Top 5 on the Top 40 Mainstream singles chart. The album’s second single, “Tones Of Home,” was a Top 10 Mainstream Rock hit. Blind Melon peaked at #3 on the Billboard 200 albums chart and in the Top 10 of Billboard’s Heatseekers chart.

The band’s first professional studio recordings, cut at Sound City Studios in 1991, comprise the previously unreleased, five-song “Sippin’ Time Sessions” EP: “Dear Ol’ Dad,” “Soul One,” “Tones Of Home,” “Seed To A Tree,” and “Mother.” Included in all of the new edition’s configurations, the EP’s tracks have been newly remixed by Brad Smith and Christopher Thorn.

"When I pulled up the tracks, I was immediately taken back to the feeling of walking into a big studio for the first time,” says Brad Smith. “Everyone seemed to be on fire, especially Shannon. It was super refreshing to hear full takes without overdubs! 2" tape, 24 tracks and dudes in a room with mics... amazing! David Briggs took us to Sound City because he had worked there with Neil Young and really liked the Neve board that was in there. Listening back to the tapes, I realize he made the perfect choice for us. We are lucky to have these recordings!"

I am very excited that these recordings are finally being heard,” says Christopher Thorn. “As I was mixing the tracks I realized just how lucky we were to record at the legendary Sound City Studios with John Hanlon as our engineer and David Briggs as our producer. They taught us so much about how to capture our sound on tape. David was in the tracking room with us, conducting and dancing along with us. I felt so inspired by him. It is one of my favorite memories during this session. This was a magical time for our band and I am very excited that our fans will finally get to hear and feel just how pumped we were to be making our first recordings. Hearing Shannon's voice on these recordings gave me chills and reminded me why I still miss him every day."

Blind Melon’s founding members, Shannon Hoon (vocals), Rogers Stevens (guitar), Christopher Thorn (guitar), Brad Smith (bass), and Glen Graham (drums), each hailing from small towns in Mississippi, Indiana and Pennsylvania, first crossed paths in the late 1980s as young Los Angeles transplants, all seeking like-minded musical collaborators somewhere outside the city’s tangle of metal band hair. They came together to form Blind Melon and signed with Capitol Records in 1991; their self-titled debut was released the following year.

Blind Melon’s second album, Soup, was released in 1995. After a concert in Houston on October 20, 1995, Hoon died at the age of 28. Without Shannon Hoon, Blind Melon’s remaining members decided it would be best to end the band, and they went on to pursue their own interests. The band would go into hiatus for the next 12 years.

Over the years, it was clear that there was still an unmistakable demand for the band. It was around 2007 that Smith and Thorn were asked to produce a few tracks for Texas-based singer/songwriter, Travis Warren – who also happened to be a diehard Blind Melon fan. Working with Warren on his demo, Smith jokingly said to Thorn that Warren “could sing Blind Melon songs in his sleep.” The idea was born. The four remaining members – who hadn’t been in the same room in years – came together to be reacquainted with each other, and to meet with Warren. Soon after, it had become apparent that they had finally located Blind Melon’s new singer. With Stevens and Graham reclaiming their original positions, Blind Melon was back.

Setting up shop at Wishbone Studios, the reformed band spent most of 2007 writing and recording. But before issuing a new album, the group decided to introduce their newest member via a highly successful and completely sold out club tour in late 2007. If the strong response from fans at these shows is any indication, the group’s upcoming shows and forthcoming new music will continue to spread the word even further. The band has since performed all over the globe and plans on continuing to write, record and play into 2013, celebrating their 20 years of dedication to their music and to keeping Shannon`s memory alive.

Blind Melon