Tag Archive for 'Merge'

(Upcoming Release) Hiss Golden Messenger – Southern Grammar EP Out 2/3/15 – Letterman Video

Southern Grammar EP

 

Some good news from the Hiss Golden Messenger camp today!

First, we’re getting a new 12″ vinyl 3-track EP in February! Titled Southern Grammar, it will feature the previously digitally released “Brother, Do You Know The Road,” and a version of “Southern Grammar” that was recorded for WXPN’s World Cafe.

In addition to those two tracks, the EP will include the Lateness of Dancers outtake “He Wrote The Book” which dedicated HGM fans might recall was a solo acoustic Bad Debt outtake that was collected on the 2012 album Lord I Love The Rain. I’m assuming since this was intended for Lateness, that it is a full-band recording.

The EP is available for pre-order right now for $10.98 from Merge and releases February 3, 2015. There will be a digital download with it.

In addition to this, a full-band HGM stormed the Ed Sullivan Theater (home of The Late Show with David Letterman) last night and performed “Southern Grammar.”

Here are the tracks from the EP you can check out:

A video for the World Cafe performance of “Southern Grammar”

“Brother, Do You Know the Road?”

The version of “He Wrote the Book” that was on Lord I Love the Rain

 

Overheard on TV: Helvetica Documentary Soundtrack

A friend of mine recommended that I watch the 2007 documentary dedicated to the typeface/font Helvetica titled plainly enough Helvetica. When I saw it show up in the NetFlix streaming recommendations for me, I watched it.

Helvetica the typeface was designed in 1957 by the Swiss type foundry Haas to be a general-use typeface. It was an immediate success and adopted virtually everywhere since, and enjoys constant use to this day. This documentary by Gary Hustwit looks at the typeface and its success and shows how its existence impacted graphic design over the years. Hustwit also produced the amazing Wilco documentary I Am Trying to Break Your Heart, the Robert Moog documentary Moog, and the Death Cab For Cutie tour film Drive Well, Sleep Carefully.

I found myself very engrossed in the film as I have been a type geek ever since my first Macintosh in the 80’s. The movie talks a bit about the reaction to standard typesetting practices in the 90’s during the “grunge” movement, which yielded a couple of my favorite magazines Emigre and Raygun which were the leading edge of that movement which I was a fan of which included the work Vaughan Oliver did with v.23/23 Envelope for 4AD records.

One of the things that hooked me right away was the soundtrack to the movie (of course!). It has a collection of really great Post Rock and related artists on it like El Ten Eleven (an impressive NINE songs!), Sam Prekop and The Chicago Underground Quartet. Here is the song listing from imdb.com:

“Thinking Loudly” –  El Ten Eleven
“Lorge” – El Ten Eleven
“Central Nervous Piston” – El Ten Eleven
“My Only Swerving” – El Ten Eleven
“Fanshawe” – El Ten Eleven

These songs are from El Ten Eleven’s 2005 self-titled release.

“Meow”-  Motohiro Nakashima
“Potala” – Motohiro Nakashima

These songs are from his 2004 release And I Went to Sleep.

“Helvetica 2” –  Kim Hiorthoy
“Helvetica 9” – Kim Hiorthoy

Kim Hiorthoy is, according to his Wikipedia article, a Norwegian electronic musician. He’s been recording since 2000 and has a number of releases out. These two tracks are obviously done specifically for this movie.

“Every Direction is North” –  El Ten Eleven
“Bye Annie, Bye Joe, Bye Michael, Bye Jake” incorrectly titled “Bye 2” – El Ten Eleven
“Hot Cakes” – El Ten Eleven
“3+4” – El Ten Eleven

These songs are from El Ten Eleven’s 2007 release Every Direction is North.

“Seqy Chords 3” –Sam Prekop
“Seqy Solo” –Sam Prekop

These songs by Sam Prekop of The Sea and Cake appear to be written specifically for this release– or at least only appear here. I wonder if these songs are somehow related to the CD that came with his photography book?

“IPT2” –  Battles

This song is from the Battles 2006 release on Warp called EP C/B EP.

“Tunnel Chrome” –  Chicago Underground Quartet

This track is from Rob Mazurek’s Chicago Underground Quartet project’s 2001 self-titled Thrill Jockey release.

“Magic Step” – Sam Prekop

This song is from Prekop’s 2005 release Who’s Your New Professor on Thrill Jockey.

“And Then Patterns” – Four Tet

This song is from the brilliant 2007 Four Tet release Everything Ecstatic

“Pelican Narrows” – Caribou

This track is from his 2005 Merge Records release The Milk of Human Kindness.

“Shine” – The Album Leaf

This track is taken from The Album Leaf’s 2006 release on SubPop Into the Blue Again.

This is a pretty great collection of bands– mostly ones that I really like and admire– and the two artists that I hadn’t heard of (Nakashima and Hiorthoy) I plan to check out. I’m not the first blogger to comment on the soundtrack, and one of them even made an iTunes mix of it. It would be great if they’d release this soundtrack– if only the ones that are specific to this movie from Sam Prekop and Hiorthoy!

Upcoming Show: Wye Oak & Pontiak at The Mill 6/15/08

While I was out doing some research on the new Thrill Jockey signees Pontiak, I noticed that they are going to be playing at the Mill in Iowa City along with new Merge Records act Wye Oak. I wasn’t familiar with Wye Oak— they looked like a folk act which seemed puzzling to me considering the grungy distortion brought by Pontiak.

Well, a bit more research and listening to the album stream of If Children on Merge’s website revealed a band with its feet in a more shoegazer-y location. At times they sound like Low to me with the layered sounds and the dreamy delivery. Another band from Baltimore– what’s up with the insurgency of Baltimore bands all of a sudden?– Wye Oak is a two piece with Jenn Wasner and Andy Stack playing all instruments on the album and able to deliver this in a live setting.

Pontiak– although NOT from Baltimore– are getting a helpful boost from Baltimore band Arbouretum. Arbouretum and Pontiak are going to release a split LP on 7/22/08 on Thrill Jockey Kale which will be a tribute to John Cale. Vinyl only, thank you! TJ doesn’t have any streaming samples to listen to for Kale, yet, but they do have samples of Pontiak’s 2007 release Sun on Sun, which will be re-released on Thrill Jockey September 9th. You can purchase mp3’s and apparently the 2007 Fireproof Records vinyl before then, though!

Wye Oak and Pontiak will be joined by Ames, Iowa band Poison Control Center, and the surfy good vibrations of The Botticellis for a night of Indie goodness sponsored by Mission Creek— all for a measly $7! I’ve provided enough links below that you should be able to memorize the words to all of these band’s songs so you can sing along.

I’ve included links below to the Daytrotter sessions that both Poison Control Center and The Botticelli’s have done. Not to be upstaged, Wye Oak and Pontiak are scheduled to record a Daytrotter session before the Iowa City show.

Download four songs from If Children by Wye Oak

See a bunch of live videos of Wye Oak on YouTube

Listen to tracks from Sun on Sun and Valley of Cats from Pontiak’s website.

Poison Control Center’s Daytrotter Session

The Botticelli’s Daytrotter Session

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