2011 October | The Audio Perv - Part 29
Archive for October, 2011
03 Oct

By Michael Zonenashvili

I had always been under the impression that Wilco played an ugodly-long show. The last time they played Boston they played 39 songs, sure I wasn’t there, but I heard about it. That’s what counts right? I’d heard about these impressively long shows, an Evening With Wilco, essentially. I wasn’t treated to one of these insanely long shows, no. However, I was treated to a show that may be better kept at a modest(ish) two hours.

As I took my seat in a venue, a man and his wife came in, gestured to my concert buddy and I, and asked if we were pumped. Before I got to snarkily reply, “Yeah, pretty pumped dude.” he raised both beer-wielding hands in the air and yelled “WOOOO, NELS CLINE YOU BASTARD.” I didn’t understand it. All I gathered was he was in Dad-Rock/Plaid Dad/”You Call This A Date” mode.

It took me a while to be less uncomfortable about being the youngest person in the audience other than kids dragged by their parents for some weird Alt-Country bonding. Why did that guy call Nels Cline a bastard? Oh, too late, Wilco is on, thank god. Opening with the powerhouse “Art of Almost” the electronic meddling of the first three minutes of the concert eventually reconstructed into a Nels Cline shred-fest, as prog nerds in the audience collectively had spiritual crises.

Wilco would continue through their set, nailing the staples and the jams. Bouncing between the Beatles(Whole Love), The Doors(I Might) and Cash(Black Moon) they covered much new ground from their new record. Jam hopefuls were appeased by “At Least That’s What You Said” and Yankee Hotel Foxtrot zealots got “I Am Trying To Break Your Heart.” Everyone was happy, even Jeff Tweedy smiled a bit.

So, sure, not 3 hours and 45 minutes. Sure, the venue cut the band off before “Jesus Etc.” and “Via Chicago.” No big deal, almost every single song they did get to play deserved its well earned spot on the setlist. And by the end, yes, I did hate Nels Cline. No one’s hands should be able to move so dexterously on a guitar, you bastard.

All photos by Michael Zonenashvili

03 Oct

Legendary British rockers The Zombies are on tour now. A few weeks ago, they visited the Beachland Ballroom in Cleveland. Check out some really great photos of Colin, Rod and the gang performing live as well as hanging out in their dressing room below thanks to our photographer Kelly Brown (KellyBrownPhotographer.com)

03 Oct

Neon Indian (or Alan Palomo if you’re a good buddy of his) has been on fire lately. He just released his new album Era Extraña a few weeks ago. His PAl198x custom synth is pretty much sold out. Now, Neon Indian is on a national tour (with several sold out shows). On Friday night, the tour came to the Troubadour in Los Angeles. Check out some really cool photos below courtesy of Kelly Brown (KellyBronwPhotographer.com)

03 Oct

On a beautiful weekend in Canton, MA, more than 20,000 optimists gathered for a two-day music and fundraising festival hosted by Life is good® (read our review of Day 1 of the festival), a Boston-based company that spreads the power of optimism through its colorful collection of apparel and accessories and through its social mission to help kids overcome life-threatening challenges. Drawing families and adults of all ages, the festival achieved its ambitious fundraising goal of $1 million for the Life is good Playmakers, the action arm of the Life is good Kids Foundation.

The multi-faceted fundraiser, produced in partnership with Superfly Presents, combined world-class headliners and nationally-known musical talent on three stages, including several of today’s most popular children’s performers. Ray LaMontagne, The Avett Brothers, Michael Franti and Spearhead, The Levon Helm Band, Robert Randolph and the Family Band,Martin Sexton, Raphael Saadiq, Ingrid Michaelson and The Hold Steady were among the many acts that delivered high-energy, crowd-pleasing performances. Brandi Carlile and The Levon Helm Band were joined by The Boston Pops for portions of their individual sets, a once-in-a-lifetime experience for those in the audience. On the Good Kids Stage, kindie rock superstars Imagination Movers and The Laurie Berkner Band as well as Keller Williams and local favorite Ben Rudnick and Friends had the young and the young-at-heart dancing along throughout the day.

“Helping vulnerable children doesn’t need to be painful or heavy,” said Bert Jacobs, chief executive optimist of Life is good. “The Life is good Festival is a celebration, and we’re grateful to everyone who came together to make it happen. Good vibes really can save lives.”

To reach the $1 million mark, Life is good donated 100% of its profits from ticket sales, sponsors, and onsite apparel and merchandise sales to the Life is good Kids Foundation. In addition, Life is good achieved its goal of creating a community of fundraisers. Known as VGPs – Very Good People – these festival-goers signed on to raise funds for the Life is good Playmakers, and in turn were rewarded with exclusive backstage hospitality, preferred concert viewing, artist meet and greets and more. Over $435,000 was raised by the VGPs.

The Life is good Kids Foundation is a registered 501(c)3 nonprofit committed to helping children overcome life-threatening challenges such as violence, illness and extreme poverty. Its Playmakers initiative provides innovative training and support to the frontline child care professionals dedicated to helping these children so that all involved lead healthier, more joyful lives. To date, the Life is good Playmakers have trained more than 2,500 Playmakers across the country who have provided joyful, healing play to over 130,000 children.

In addition to the music, the 2011 Life is good Festival featured a host of activities that included backyard games, interactive art projects, great food from local restaurants and vendors and much more. Mascots from all of the professional sports teams were onsite for photos, and StubHub, a sponsor of the Festival , set up a unique viewing lounge for fans to catch their favorite sporting event. To produce the event, Life is good once again partnered with Superfly Presents, acclaimed producers of the iconic Bonnaroo Music & Arts Festival and Outside Lands.

“The 2011 Life is good Festival is a truly unique event that resonates strongly with both adults and children. That isn’t an easy accomplishment, but Life is good has certainly succeeded,” said Rick Farman, co-founder of Superfly Presents. “We are proud to be associated with the event and look forward to a long partnership.”

The 2011 Life is good Festival took place at Prowse Farm in Canton, MA, a historic 44-acre property managed by the Friends of Prowse Farm, a nonprofit volunteer organization. The property is located at the gateway of the Blue Hills Reservation, public parkland that has been set aside for recreational use.

For more information on The Life is good Company, the Life is good Kids Foundation and the Life is good Festival, please visit www.lifeisgood.com.

About The Life is good Company
The Life is good Company, based in Boston, MA, spreads a fresh outlook on life through its colorful collection of apparel and accessories and through its social mission to help kids overcome life-threatening challenges. For more information on Life is good, please visit www.lifeisgood.com.

About The Life is good Kids Foundation
The Life is good Kids Foundation is an accredited 501(c)(3) public charity whose mission is to help children overcome life-threatening challenges, including violence, illness and extreme poverty. Through its action arm, Life is good Playmakers, it provides training and support to the adults dedicated to caring for these children so that all involved lead healthier, more joyful lives. More than $6.5 million has been raised to date for children in need, principally through Life is good Festivals and the 100% of profits that The Life is good Company donates to the Foundation from nationwide sales of select products. For more information, visit www.ligplaymakers.org.

About Superfly
Superfly Presents was founded in New Orleans in 1996 by Kerry Black, Rick Farman, Richard Goodstone and Jonathan Mayers. Originally set up to become the leading independent local concert promoter, they created the Superfly During JazzFest series, which is now in its 14th year. In 2002, they co-founded and continue to produce the iconic Bonnaroo Music & Arts Festival. Since its inception in 2002, Bonnaroo swiftly earned its status as the country’s premier music and arts event and Rolling Stone called the festival “one of the 50 moments to change the history of rock and roll.” In 2008, Superfly co-founded the acclaimed San Francisco-based Outside Lands Music & Arts Festival. The company has also created the Superfly Marketing Group, a boutique entertainment-marketing agency designed to complement Superfly’s diverse divisions. Superfly Marketing Group leverages the company’s experience, expertise and industry relationships to develop brand partnerships geared towards the passionate entertainment and lifestyle consumer.

03 Oct

Puscifer, the eclectic music-meets-comedy troupe helmed by Maynard James Keenan (Tool, A Perfect Circle), kick off their first North American tour in support of the band’s sophomore release, Conditions of My Parole (Oct. 18, Puscifer Entertainment), on Nov. 7 in Seattle. Additional dates will be announced shortly.

Puscifer will make their television debut on Halloween with a performance on The Late Show with David Letterman.

The band’s live performances are not to be missed. A musically driven evening that merges technology, quirky characters and comedy, Spin referred to the shows as an “X-rated episode of Hee-Haw” and the Las Vegas Review Journal described the set as “a performance art spectacle equal parts comedy cabaret show and guerilla theater.”

Puscifer’s core and touring band members are Maynard James Keenan, Mat Mitchell, Josh Eustis, Carina Round, Matt McJunkins and Jeff Friedl. Carina Round will act as support for all dates.

Tickets for all shows go on-sale Friday, Oct. 7 at 12 noon local time via venue box offices, as well as Ticketmaster and Live Nation websites. A limited number of VIP packages, featuring wine tastings and a more mysterious Puscifer encounter, will be available simultaneously via http://puscifer.frontgatetickets.com.

November 7 Seattle, WA Paramount Theatre
9 Salt Lake City, UT Capitol Theatre
10 Denver, CO Paramount Theatre
12 St. Louis, MO Peabody Opera House
14 Minneapolis, MN State Theatre
15 Chicago, IL Cadillac Palace Theatre
17 Cleveland, OH Lakewood Civic Auditorium
18 Toronto, ON Sony Centre for the Performing Arts
19 Detroit, MI Royal Oak Music Theatre
22 Boston, MA Orpheum Theatre
23 Philadelphia, PA Tower Theatre
25 Brooklyn, NY Brooklyn Academy of Music
26 Washington, DC TBA
27 Charlotte, NC TBA
29 Knoxville, TN Tennessee Theatre
30 Atlanta, GA Cobb Energy Performing Arts Center

December 6 Los Angeles, CA Orpheum Theatre
9 Las Vegas, NV TBA
11 Phoenix, AZ TBA

Puscifer recently released the Meats Meier animated video for “Man Overboard,” the first single from Conditions of My Parole. The video can be seen here: http://youtu.be/IkHQAvZEM1o.

“Conditions of My Parole” Promo video

03 Oct

By Morad Moazami

It is a fascinating experience to see venues fill up and empty out day by day. Each day new sounds are introduced, while on others, older tunes are relived and revisited. Only a few days ago, Peter Hook and the Light took to the stage at Toronto’s Phoenix Concert Theatre and put on an unforgettable show recalling the memory of the legendary Joy Division – a band that collapsed over 30 years ago. The memory of that show, among countless of other great performances are surely etched into the history of this concert venue, and new ones are surely to be added. While last week the Phoenix celebrated the music of a band long lost in time, this week instead belonged to a wholly different kind of musician: the rising prodigy that is James Blake.

With music that croons and hinges on the fragility of sound, Blake’s music undoubtedly requires a delicate atmosphere and a great deal of hard work to shape, rearrange, and bring to life every night in a different city and venue; each with completely dissimilar characteristics in both sound and setting. Blake could have easily brought along with him a Mac laptop, a turntable and a couple of synthesizers and faultlessly recreated the sounds that have captured so large an audience in the 21-year-old’s so-far-short but impeccable career, yet he knows neither he as an artist nor his fans would be fully satisfied by such a set-up. Though he is prominent for his utilization of samplers and sequencers, Blake is far from the stereotypical dubstep “musician”, in the sense that he truly is a musician by every definition of that word.

When entering the concert venue one of the most instantly noticeable sights was that of a lack of turntables and laptops. To be more precise, there were none. Instead keyboards, synthesizers, guitars, and a drum-set had already been set-up on stage for the youthful headliner and his live band.

Before Blake took to the stage, the New York-based Chairlift performed an opening set. Aside from the atrocious name, Chairlift were an impressive ensemble of musicians, receiving expanding applauses after the performance of each song. Halfway through their 30-minute set however, a common suspicion loomed along the audience: the songs though highly enjoyable had a certain same-soundingness to them; that of electronic rock infused with nostalgic ‘80s pop. The vocalist Caroline Polachek danced and delightedly moved about throughout the set, singing with a falsetto most similar to that of Kate Bush – yet understandably not as far-reaching. The band triumphed in winning back the growing audience with the last song of the set, a loud danceable track with surprising hints of industrial music carefully layered in between. This band’s attention-grabbing performance was a great indication of the talent and energy that is contained in this group, and if Chairlift – regardless of that horrendous name – are able to break through the same-soundingness that plagued the midpoint of their set, they assuredly have the musicianship to achieve greater levels of success.

When James Blake and his two musical companions walked onto the stage, the crowd had already been warmed up by the satisfactory opening band and the general anticipation to hear his music in person – especially considering that his prolific catalogue had already expanded in the mere 5-months since he last visited Toronto.

The show opened with the title-track from Blake’s forthcoming EP, Enough Thunder, a piano-driven piece of music that could have faultlessly been a part of Blake’s debut LP without undermining the flow of the intricate record. The familiar strains of Unluck followed as Blake and his bandmates – one solely playing drums while the other regularly switched between guitar and synthesizer – exquisitely captured the soul of the artist’s self-titled album in the live setting. More than frequently, the sonic mastery of three-piece live act would disperse vibrations throughout the venue, adding to the intimacy of the hushed atmosphere. As they continued to perform more song from the eponymous album (I Never Learnt to Share, Lindisfarne, To Care Like You), it became evident that Blake wasn’t merely altering the atmosphere of the enclosed venue, but by utilizing his masterful craft and musicianship to its full potential, he was, in actuality, creating a wholly new environment, one that could accompany his unique music with the precision that he deemed necessary.

Blake’s excitement in performing was evident throughout the set. It was a refreshing sight to see this young musician smile with a glimmering radiance, unable to conceal the thrill and pleasure of having obtained such great prominence and acclaim in such a short period of time. After all, it certainly must be a strange yet wonderful sensation to realize that your music is inspiring those twice your age, not to mention a significant portion of the younger audience.

After an extended performance of his most-beautiful rendition of Feist’s Limit to Your Love, Blake continued to lyrically overwhelm the audience with rarities like Klavierwerke and yet another new song from his upcoming EP, titled Once We All Agree, before ending the set with The Wilhelm Scream.

Of course, the one-hour set was not all. After a round of thunderous applause, the three-piece walked back on stage, performing a lengthy unknown piece that thickened with layers as the song progressed; an impromptu jam that all three musicians were certainly enjoying and reveling in. After the remarkable piece, Blake’s musical confidants left the stage, leaving the closing song to Blake and his piano, as he performed his recently revealed cover of the Joni Mitchell classic, A Case of You.

As one walks through the hallways of the Phoenix Theatre, framed photographs of many bands who have performed on its stage are proudly hung on the wall: The Rolling Stones, Bob Dylan, Green Day, The Black Crowes, and many others; each of them having left a hint of their music and legacy in this enclosed space. For a consummate performer like James Blake, this is only the beginning. After an astonishingly swift and deserved rise to fame, Blake has proved himself to be a significant figure in today’s musical environment, offering the world accessible yet extraordinarily novel sounds that will unquestionably have their effects on modern-day musicians’ approach to music. Perhaps, years from now, another framed photograph will catch the eye of a passing fan: that of James Blake, a pioneer of his own.


Enough Thunder
Tep & The Logic
I Never Learnt To Share
To Care (Like You)
Limit To Your Love
Once We All Agree
The Wilhelm Scream

A Case of You (Joni Mitchell Cover)

03 Oct

Having wrapped a three-month summer tour in support of their current album Something For The Rest Of Us, The Goo Goo Dolls have announced that they will continue touring through the fall, launching a new string of dates on October 12th in Milwaukee. Tickets go on-sale this week. Visit www.googoodolls.com/tour for more information.

In other Goos news, the band’s blockbuster single “Iris” has soared to No. 1 on the U.K. iTunes chart after being performed by two finalists on the British edition of The X Factor. In addition, the band’s Greatest Hits album re-entered the chart at No. 18. “Iris” has been a steady seller in Great Britain since its original release in 1998, enjoying more than 433,000 in sales, and racking up more than 30 million views on YouTube. The song is expected to top the U.K. Singles chart this weekend, which would be its highest chart position ever.

“I love the fact that young artists are inspired to sing this song. It opened a lot of doors for us,” says Rzeznik. “To see it hit No. 1 in the U.K. and connect with a growing new audience is cool.”

Finally, the band, which is singer-guitarist Johnny Rzeznik, bassist Robby Takac, and drummer Mike Malinin, has just recorded a brand-new song, entitled “The Best Of Me,” which will be heard on an upcoming episode of CBS’s hit remake of Hawaii Five-O, as well as on a soon-to-be released soundtrack album.

The Goo Goo Dolls upcoming tour dates are as follows. Ryan Starr supports on all dates except for those starred.

10/12 Milwaukee, WI Pabst Theater
10/15 Chicago, IL The Mix Second Chance Homecoming*
10/16 Morgantown, WV Morgantown Event Center
10/17 Nashville, TN Ryman Auditorium
10/19 Ithaca, NY State Theater
10/21 Utica, NY Stanley Performing Arts Center
10/22 Hampton Beach, NH Hampton Beach Casino
10/23 Torrington, CT Warner Theater
10/25 Williamsport, PA Williamsport Community Arts Center
10/26 Charlottesville, VA John Paul Jones Arena
10/27 Greensboro, NC Carolina Theatre
10/29 Lake Charles, LA L’Auberge du Lac Hotel & Casino*
10/30 Tupelo, MS BancorpSouth Arena
11/02 Fort Myers, FL Barbara B. Mann Performing Arts Hall
11/04 Gainesville, FL Gator Growl*
11/05 Melbourne, FL King Center for the Performing Arts
11/07 Richmond, VA The National
11/08 Reading, PA Sovereign Performing Arts Center
11/09 Wilmington, DE Grand Opera House
11/11 Montclair, NJ Wellmont Theater
11/12 Huntington, NY The Paramount
11/13 Erie, PA Warner Theater

03 Oct

Garbage is currently in the studio putting the finishing touches on their fifth studio album and their first in seven years. The new album is being recorded in a basement in the Atwater Village area of Los Angeles, CA, the first to be recorded outside of Madison, WI. The as yet untitled album will be released in Spring 2012, and is being produced by Garbage, engineered by Billy Bush, and mixed by Butch Vig and Billy Bush.

“Years-worth of pent-up music came out in some bizarre ways- bleary cell phone memos became real songs, conversations turned into lyrics, and new computer gizmos inspired wicked tangents,” said the members of Garbage. “Ghosts came in, had their say. Everyone brought ideas, and everyone fought their corner. At the end of the day it all gets shoved through the four-way brain filter that is Garbage and it ends up sounding like nobody else. Red feathers and black tar.”

Even though it’s been seven years, there hasn’t been a female-fronted band since that has matched their inimitable sound, brashness and energy. Now free of all their corporate obligations, the band has been able to start again with a clean slate on their own terms. They add, “We are making a record filled with the music we love to hear. The new songs have been inspired more by what we haven’t been hearing rather than by what we have.”

After forming in Madison, WI, Garbage released their self-titled debut album in 1995 and rode a wave of visually arresting, female-fronted alternative rock bands. The album spawned the hit singles “Stupid Girl” and “Only Happy When It Rains” and was certified double platinum in Australia, the United Kingdom, and the United States. The band won the Breakthrough Artist Award at the 1996 MTV Europe Music Awards. Their second album, Garbage 2.0, was released in 1998 and topped the charts in the United Kingdom. It was nominated for two Grammy Awards including Album of the Year and Best Rock Album. 2001′s Beautiful Garbage was named one of Rolling Stone Magazine’s Top 10 Albums Of The Year. In 2005, Garbage released Bleed Like Me, earning the band it’s highest chart position with a No. 4 on the Billboard Top 200 Album Chart. In 2007, the band released a retrospective collection called Absolute Garbage. Garbage has sold over 12 million albums worldwide.

Garbage is Shirley Manson (vocals, guitar), Steve Marker (guitars, keyboards), Duke Erikson (guitars, keyboards) and Butch Vig (drums, loops).


01 Oct

Italian teen opera trio Il Volo are one of the most popular groups in music these days. You saw them on the series finale of Entourage and American Idol, NOW SEE THEM PERFORM LIVE! This Monday, Il Volo plays the Beacon Theatre in New York City.

We want YOU to be at the show! One lucky winner will win TWO tickets to see Il Volo Monday night in NYC. Just email us theaudioperv@gmail.com (with the subject: I WANNA SEE IL VOLO!) with your name and we’ll email you back if you win! (Winner must be from the U.S. and at least 18 years of age).