Gliss @ Silverlake Lounge 10pm tonight

TONIGHT! @ silverlake lounge 10pm FREE
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LIARS - Proud Evolution





9/29/10 – Lee’s Palace, Toronto, ON

9/30/10 – Le National, Pop Montreal (Headline)

10/1/10 – Ritual, Ottawa, ON

10/2/10 – This Aint Hollywood, Hamilton

WATCH Liars’ performance at La Route Du Rock festival HERE.

Liars will release a new single, Proud Evolution, as a six track EP on October 19th, 2010. The new EP features a remix from Thom Yorke, a live version recorded at Music Hall Of Williamsburg in Brooklyn, plus three exclusive new b-sides “Come Now”, “Total Frown”, and “Strangers”.

Liars on “Proud Evolution”: “A triumphant processional piano part is hijacked by something more lurid and tempting. The clicking and gurgling of what’s kicking. Soon a large rolling mass of bass displaces the equilibrium and redirects it into a groove. The tempting wave reminds you that misplaced confidence can be frightening.”

Liars make a long awaited return to Canada, playing Toronto and Montreal for the first time since 2006, and playing Ottawa and Hamilton for the first time ever! Having taken their critically acclaimed fifth album Sisterworld across the US, Liars head north to devastate Canada including a headline appearance at the Pop Montreal International Music Festival on September 30th.

At this year’s Pitchfork Music Festival, Chicago Sun-Times observed “A series of owl cries and electronically distorted yowls rose and fell over guitar lines played carefully just a half xtone off where they should be, and the bass lurked and dodged in the lengthening shadows.”

Time Out Chicago raved, “Art-rockers Liars took a cue from the blistering sun, delivering a set that was equally as intense as the sweltering heat beaming down from above.”

Sisterworld is out now on CD, double vinyl and 2CD version. The second disc of the 2CD release sees each track on Sisterworld remixed and reinterpreted by a host of artists including Thom Yorke, Devendra Banhart, Atlas Sound, Blonde Redhead, Fol Chen and Alan Vega while the unique packaging for the 2CD and deluxe vinyl editions, designed by Brian Roettinger / Hand Held Heart (Grammy nominated and Rolling Stone award winning for his work with No Age) allows a surreal glimpse into Sisterworld.

Daytrotter Session HERE.

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Sunset Strip Music Fest 2010

For a lot of us who grew up in Los Angeles, much of our time was spent somewhere between Book Soup, the Whiskey a-go-go, and The Roxy. I don't often go to the Roxy anymore. I went to the Whiskey back in 2002 to see Andrew WK, and a few years ago to see Pete Yorn. Now many bands have been featured anywhere from West Hollywood, to Mid-Wilshire, to Echo Park. But this weekend, we can all relive the golden past with a trip down memory lane.

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Woven Bones @ Bottom of The Hill




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Billy Idol @ the fillmore

All photos taken in San Francisco by Alexander Laurence
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Sugar Plant Interview


Sugar Plant are a Japanese band. Their albums include After After Hours and Happy/Trance Mellow. I interviewed them at Brownies a few years ago (late 1997) when they last toured. This interview has never been seen or published. I talked with the main members Shin'ichi Ogawa and Chinatsu Shoyama.

Chinatsu: Can you speak slowly?
AL: I will speak slowly... and... I will speak... very... good... English. You're the singer?
Chinatsu: He plays the guitar and I play bass. I sing. Sometimes I play guitar.
AL: How many years have you been together?
Chinatsu: More than three years.
AL: You two are the main members. Then you have some others who play with you?
Chinatsu: For our live show we have three other members. We don't play keyboards or drums.
AL: Do you want to play more drums and keyboards in the future?
Shin'ichi: (laughter) No. I like guitar.
AL: Do you like to play live shows?
Chinatsu: We love it. Yeah.
AL: It seems like this guy Merzbow comes out with twenty records a year. Can you keep up with him?
Shin'ichi: (says something in Japanese)
Chinatsu: I don't understand your question.
AL: Is this your first time in the United States?
Chinatsu: No. We played here before. Not at Brownies, but in New York. We played at Under Acme (Acme Underground). This is the start of our American tour. We came here last year and the year before. We like the American audience more than Japanese. It's good.
AL: What's wrong with the Japanese? You live in Tokyo?
Shin'ichi: Near Tokyo. They are so quiet.
Chinatsu: Yeah, Japanese audiences are quiet.
AL: They are too polite?
Chinatsu: Yeah, in a way.
AL: Should audiences be more aggressive over there?
Chinatsu: It's easy to know what American audiences think.
AL: Your music can put someone in a trance. People might get crazy and want to cause some violence.
Shin'ichi: Violence. Hmmm.
Chinatsu: I don't care.
AL: I listen to After After Hours all the time. Especially late at night. I didn't know what the lyrics were till I read them a few days ago. There's seems to be a lot about Astronomy.
Shin'ichi: (says something in Japanese)
Chinatsu: I'm singing about my experience and myself. The sun, sky, and stars are easy to explain and represent....
AL: You seem to be more comfortable speaking Japanese. Why do you sing in English?
Chinatsu: Our favorite music is American and British. It's natural to sing in English.
AL: Which bands are your favorites? People always compare Sugar Plant to Mazzy Star and Velvet Underground.
Shin'ichi: Stereolab. Galaxy 500.
AL: What is the live show like?
Chinatsu: We play some old songs, but most are new. We play one song off a new EP.
AL: What do you think of some of the noise bands?
Shin'ichi: I like some of the noisy music. Keghi Hanio. I saw them ten times.
AL: Who do you like to play with? Or do you refuse to share the stage?
Chinatsu: Seagull Screaming Kiss Her Kiss Her.
AL: Are you familiar of the Silver Apples?
Shin'ichi: I never heard them.
AL: Are you interested in art or literature?
Shin'ichi: I like photography. Robert Frank.
AL: What about Araki.
Shin'ichi: He's famous but too erotic.
AL: You don't share the same erotic vision we see in Araki or Merzbow?
Shin'ichi: I don't understand. (laughter)
AL: You have these very poetic lyrics. Does that come out of any literary tradition?
Chinatsu: I write Japanese poetry. I majored in university. I like Bukowski. He's rough but I read him in English and Japanese.
AL: Do you have any spiritual interests?
Chinatsu: I don't know how to say in English. I read some books about the spiritual world. I don't the titles in English.
AL: So you're on tour with La Bradford. What do you think of their music?
Chinatsu: The show was great. They have three CDs out. And I like them all. Their show is great. La Bradford is very famous. This is the biggest tour we've done. We are playing thirty shows in six weeks. After that we are going to work on a new record.
AL: What should we expect?
Chinatsu: More pop. Spacey.
AL: Are there going to be some robot toys on this record?
Shin'ichi: Maybe. (laughter)
AL: Okay. I'll get someone to translate the Japanese parts.
Chinatsu: Can we talk into here in Japanese?
AL: Yes. You can talk about After After Hours in Japanese.
Chinatsu: (says something in Japanese)
Shin'ichi: (says something in Japanese)
AL: Do you guys like to stay up late?
Chinatsu: This is music for after "after hours." Do you go to clubs? After you go to a club and come back to home, you're going to be relaxed. This is music for after that. You put it on a CD player.
AL: Do you like Martin Denny?
Shin'ichi: No. I like rock and techno.
Chinatsu: Sometimes rock is too much. Techno is good but sometimes boring. So we like to combine them together. The next record will be different.

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The Octopus Project


In recent years of intensive touring, long drives from venue to venue soundtracked by minimal composers Terry Riley and Steve Reich led Austin-based group The Octopus Project to think about expanding the scope of their own endeavors. Already known for concise blasts of experimental pop and energetic stage shows, the band wished to create a more enveloping experience. That notion evolved into Hexadecagon, debuted as a live performance and soon to be released in album form October 26, 2010 on Peek-A-Boo Records.

In order to achieve their creative vision, Josh and Yvonne Lambert, Toto Miranda, and Ryan Figg decided they needed more than stereo audio and a single projection. Using custom electronics (The Bend Matrix) and pushing existing software (Ableton Live, VDMX, OSCulator) to its limits, they arranged eight speakers in a circle around the audience, with the audience surrounding the band at the center, accompanied by eight synchronized video projections, designed by Austin digital artist Wiley Wiggins.

The Octopus Project performed Hexadecagon live twice to over-capacity crowds during SXSW 2010 to emphatically positive reception. Paste Magazine said of the show, "if there's a such thing as a happiness seizure, be prepared to have one," while The Austin American Statesman described the event as, "the trippiest, most elaborate thing the Octopus Project have ever done, and that's a very tall order." USA Today ranked the performance one of its top five shows of SXSW.

The band spent the next two months recording in their Austin home studio and mixing in Dallas with John Congleton (St. Vincent, Explosions In the Sky, Clinic, The Walkmen). The result is a multi-layered, high-definition, ultra-widescreen sonic universe, re-arranged and re-orchestrated to create an engrossing experience for anyone with a pair of speakers or headphones.

The Octopus Project will bring elements of Hexadecagon on the road with them for a fall tour, with dates to be announced shortly. Don't miss them!

For more information, please visit:
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Isobel Campbell & Mark Lanegan

Isobel Campbell and Mark Lanegan Announce Premiere U.S. Tour Beginning October 13th
New Release Hawk Available August 24th!

Isobel Campbell and Mark Lanegan will kick off their first ever North American tour beginning October 13th in Boston, MA. The tour will also include two shows in the New York area, October 16th at The Bowery Ballroom and October 17th at the Music Hall in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. Additional stops include Chicago, Minneapolis, Seattle and San Francisco. The tour will conclude with a performance at the El Rey Theatre in Los Angeles on October 29th. See full list of dates below.

Since departing the celebrated Scottish indie-pop outfit Belle and Sebastian in 2002, Isobel Campbell has released several solo albums as well as critically acclaimed collaborations with former Screaming Trees frontman Mark Lanegan. The August 24th release of Campbell’s haunting new album, Hawk, marks her third release with Lanegan and debut album with Vanguard Records.

Produced by Campbell herself, Lanegan lends his signature blues-folk growl to eight of the album’s 13 tracks, while singer-songwriter Willy Mason guests on two. Former Smashing Pumpkins guitarist James Iha appears on the track “You Won’t Let Me Down Again.” A music video for “You Won’t Let Me Down Again” is currently in production.

Click here to listen to “Come Undone.”

Isobel Campbell and Mark Lanegan
10/13/2010 Cambridge, MA – The Middle East Cafe
10/14/2010 Philadelphia, PA – Johnny Brenda’s
10/15/2010 Washington, DC – Rock N Roll Hotel
10/16/2010 New York, NY – Bowery Ballroom
10/17/2010 Brooklyn, NY – Music Hall of Williamsburg
10/19/2010 Montreal, Canada – Cabaret
10/20/2010 Toronto, Canada – Mod Club
10/21/2010 Columbus, OH – Wexner Center
10/22/2010 Chicago, IL – Lincoln Hall
10/23/2010 Minneapolis, MN – Cedar Cultural Center
10/26/2010 Seattle, WA – Neumos
10/27/2010 Portland, OR – Doug Fir
10/28/2010 San Francisco, CA – Great American Music Hall
10/29/2010 Los Angeles, CA – El Rey

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Billy Idol @ Hollywood Palladium

Billy Idol is at the Hollywood Palladium this saturday. I did an interview a few years ago for Zoo Magazine. You can see a version of it on The Portable Infinite.
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Empire Of The Sun - Standing On The Shore

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The Answering Machine @ Madame Wong's

answering machine

answering machine

The Answering Machine is also playing this Friday at Glasshouse.
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