It’s been a busy year for Athens-based group, Venice is Sinking. Earlier this spring, the quintet released its second full-length, the Scott Solter-produced ambient-pop gem, AZAR. This fall, the group returned with The Okay EP – a maxi-single of sorts – composed of alternate versions of AZAR songs, album cuts “Ryan’s Song” and “Okay”, and two covers of songs written by the Bay-Area one-man pop machine, Marty Anderson (who plays under the name, Okay). Phew, that’s a lot of Okays.
One of the Okay covers, “Compass,” has been getting a lot of love over at The Hype Machine
Head on over there and see what all the buzz is about.
Team Clermont was in attendance for last weeks Athens Jookabox show, and what an amazing evening it was! One of our favorite tracks from the Asthmatic Kitty stars is “Don’t Go Phantom”! They recently released a video for this track, the fifth video from their latest release Dead Zone Boys. This animated adventure features colored ghosts, random thievery, and mad scientistry!
Will at WDUB interviewed Adam Wills, bass player for Bear in Heaven for their station blog, www.911-blog.com
“911-Blog was fortunate enough to score an email interview with Adam Wills of Bear In Heaven, recent recipient of Pitchfork’s “Best New Music” honor for their new album, Beast Rest Forth Mouth. If you haven’t gotten around to listening to Bear In Heaven yet, their sound treads a unique path between electronica, prog, and southern rock. Look for downloads of their tracks “Wholehearted Mess” and “Lovesick Teenagers” (my new favorite song) after the interview.
Q: You have a pretty unique sound. There’s definitely influences of psychedelic rock and electronica, but it’s more than that. What are your biggest influences and how did your sound develop?
A: We get asked this question a lot, and I wish there was an answer.. It would be much easier to say, oh.. we are referencing this and we always wanted to sound like that, but honestly, this is not a topic of discussion amongst the band. We talk about beer and girls and life, spirituality and football… We tell jokes and of course listen to music and share new discoveries and old favorites… I’m sure it’s happened, but I certainly can’t recall any specific conversations on what we wanted to sound like..I will say, I think we have pretty deep and robust listening habits. We circumnavigate every genre.. We love it all, that being said, we sure hate a lot too.. That’s the magical thing about music, there’s SO much of it. I will say, we get the most excited when people compare us to This Heat.. that’s one of our shared favorite bands, and it’s cool when people drop that name, though, to my ears, we don’t sound a thing like them. I saw a tweet recently that described us as “Moroder mixed with Toto” hahah, I love it, I kinda think that nailed it.. As far as how we got to that “sound”… You tell me.. Mix all of the ingredients of 4 really good friends, 6 years of busting our ass, lots of mistakes, lots of bad shows, alienated crowds, mushrooms, late nights, thrown drumsticks, hugs, laughs, hours and hours and hours and hours of practice space recordings, editing editing editing, not a lot of talking and a whole lot of doing.. And now we’re here.. Wanna make a bet? The next record will sound completely different.
Q: What’s your mission in music? What do you all want to accomplish with Bear In Heaven?
A: Personally, my favorite aspect that comes with playing music, is new friends. I love how you can pull into a town on tour on a Tuesday night meet 10 new people, go to their house after the show, drink some beers, talk laugh, next thing you know it, it’s 5am and you’re in the middle of a “friendship pyramid with 15 people” and you’ve got new best friends in a town you’ve never been to. And how did that happen? Our band happening to have a show was the impetus for the entire evening, how rad is that.. I think we just wanna tour, make music, have people like it, make new friends, make our label some money, and write our memoirs. But all in all, there is no goal.. We have a strong desire to see this project through.. the door seems to be wide open right now, and it’s thrilling to know, we have no idea where it’s going or how it’ll end, we’re just all smiles for the ride.
Q: How does it feel to be considered “Best New Music” by Pitchfork standards? Is this a big deal in the industry? Have there been any immediate repercussions from receiving this title?
A: It feels great. It’s a bizarre phenomenon most certainly. But any sort of confirmation/affirmation that we made a good record, whether it’s my dad telling me how much he plays the album at home, a 16 year old on myspace leaving a comment or Pitchfork giving us their seal of approval.. It all feels really nice. My dad’s personal tastes don’t open as many doors for us in the music world as Pitchfork does of course, kinda wish it did!
Q: What’s next for Bear In Heaven? Any tours, collaborations, remixes, new records on the horizon?
A: Tour tour tour.. Sorting it all now. 2010 should be nice and crazy, we are hoping. USA, Europe, Japan and Australia, all being sorted out. Get stoked. Remixes are being pumped out now.. Tons of friends are coming forth wanting to remix certain tracks, we are really excited about that.
Q: Where did the name Bear In Heaven come from?
A: We named it after a painting, many, many years ago. Funny how things have worked out in the world of band names, but what can ya do… We wouldn’t change a thing.”
Strange Boys are on the road this month. Check them out if you’re on the west coast!
11-18 Calexico, CA – La Hamaca
11-20 Los Angeles, CA – Palace Theatre *
11-21 Oakland, CA – Ghost Town Gallery
11-22 Seattle, WA – Showbox *
11-23 Vancouver, British Columbia – Commodore *
11-24 Olympia, WA – Northern
11-25 Portland, OR – East End
11-28 San Diego, CA – Tower Bar
The falsetto-freaked British art-pop quartet Wild Beasts recently scored themselves a BNM for Two Dancers, their dramatic sophomore album. And in the coming months, the band will tour all over the place: the UK, mainland Europe, Australia, and then— finally— the U.S. and Canada. (It’s the band’s first North American tour.) And then back to London again. These guys will rack up some serious frequent flier miles this winter.
Check below for dates, and head on over to Pitchfork.tv ( http://pitchfork.com/tv/#/episode/2056-wild-beasts) to watch Wild Beasts rock Juan’s Basement.
11-20 London, England – Brixton Academy ^
11-21 Amsterdam, Netherlands – London Calling
11-22 The Hague, Netherlands – Crossing Border Festival
11-23 Hamburg, Germany – Hamburg Turmzimmer
11-24 Berlin, Germany – Karrera Club
11-26 Strasbourg, France – Club Laiterie
11-27 Paris, France – Le Point Ephemere
11-28 Utrecht, Netherlands – Le Guess Who? Festival
11-29 Lille, France – Aeronef
12-01 Le Havre, France – Cabaret Electric
12-04 Lisbon, Portugal – Super Bock Em Stock Festival
12-22 Kendal, England – Brewery Arts Centre
01-29 Brisbane, Australia – Laneway Festival
01-30 Melbourne, Australia – Laneway Festival
01-31 Sydney, Australia – Laneway Festival
02-06 Perth, Australia – Laneway Festival
02-10 Los Angeles, CA – Troubadour *
02-11 San Francisco, CA – Independent *
02-13 Portland, OR – Doug Fir Lounge *
02-14 Seattle, WA – Chop Suey *
02-17 Minneapolis, MN – 7th Street Entry *
02-18 Chicago, IL – Schubas *
02-19 Chicago, IL – Schubas *
02-20 Detroit, MI – Pike Room *
02-22 Toronto, Ontario – Horseshoe Tavern *
02-24 Boston, MA – Great Scott *
02-25 Philadelphia, PA – Kung Fu Necktie *
02-26 New York, NY – Bowery Ballroom *
02-27 Washington, DC – Black Cat *
03-04 London, England – KOKO
Louisville KY band Lucky Pineapple recently released their album The Bubble Has Burst In Sky City on sonaBLAST! records. The band also shot a video for the song “Moment In An Empty Street”, depicting a day in the life of a a puppet, who is VERY down on his luck. It’s a pretty terrible day, at least until he finds a flyer for a Lucky Pineapple show. Let’s just say that it’s exactly what that puppet needed. The video was shot by Andrew Vittitoe of the band Ultra Pulverize
Bear In Heaven’s latest album, Beast Rest Forth Mouth (Hometapes), received an 8.4 and the rank of Best New Music today on Pitchfork.com.
A few excerpts:
“Take out the earbuds and let it fill a space: This is music that’s bigger than your iPod— music you’ll want to feel all around you.”
“Bear in Heaven’s greatest trick is creating music that evokes the sort of physicality and scope that could soundtrack a Hollywood film, but also works equally well at stirring up intimate bodily passion. Lush synth beds, warm electronics accenting polyrhythms, and Jon Philpot’s yearning, boyish howl coalesce into a vibe that’s muscular without being macho, and which strikes a rare balance between nuanced emotion and overwhelming sensation.”
“…first single “Lovesick Teenagers” more than meets the requirements for 2009’s Epic Song About Tortured Young Romance.”
“Sure, bands can adapt to the current musical climate by adding extras to LPs, tweaking release dates to accommodate fan interest, or even giving away their music free. A curtain call like “Teenagers”, though: now that’s generosity.”
Read the entire review here:
Jerry Fuchs, drummer for Maserati, The Juan Maclean, !!!, and great friend to many died on Saturday, November 6th. For more details, see the New York Post article. Our thoughts go out to his family and friends. R.I.P. Jerry.
The Next to Last Festival, a charitable, independent music, film, and arts festival based in Athens, GA, is presenting a series of compilations featuring live and exclusive recordings by the likes of Daedelus, Themselves, Phosphorescent, Circulatory System, Diane Cluck, and Asthmatic Kitty’s Liz Janes, JOOKABOX and Chris Schlarb. These compilations are part of their effort to raise funds for their third fest currently slated for Halloween weekend 2010. To date, they have showcased over 30 unique musical acts from all over the country. They have also hosted independent film screenings, progressive speakers, performance art, a vendors market, a farmer’s market, and a community info center for creatures of all ages and species in the great North Georgia outdoors. You can support the festival and its promoters now by purchasing tickets for next year’s fest and compilations via kickstarter.com.
The Kansas City duo I Love You recently released its new LP Bell Ord Forrest on Indianapolis-based label, Joyful Noise. I Love You spouts out anthems that cross the boundaries between sabotage and self-improvement. Its combination of noisy DIY punk with thumpin’ dub bass is catchier than it should be – conveying emotion and pop sensibility, but mostly madness. Catch the band’s solvent circus at a show near you.
11.04 • Milford Amusement Center (Minneapolis, MN)
11.05 • Mortville (Chicago, IL)
11.07 • Record Release Show @ Empty Bucket (Indianapolis, IN)