Tom Vek Announces His Return!

Listening to Tom Vek’s first album We Have Sound was one of the first instances in my life when I thought, “I want to write about this. This is so good.” For some reason, I never did get to write my awesome review, but now that after five long years, Tom Vek is returning with a new album, if it’s as good (or better) than his first, I might get the opportunity. Leisure Seizure will be released on June 7th on Downtown/Coop USA/Island Records. It was put together during a 3 year set-up period that was followed by a 2 year stretch of musical output. To record it, Vek found a suitable studio space in east London, and set up PALLET Recording Studios.

All this effort seems to have paid off. I don’t want to get ahead of myself here but the first excerpt we have from the new album, a song called “A Chore,” sounds pretty good to me. The video for it, directed by Ollie Evans, is also fun: its retro feel recalls Glenn O’Brien’s show TV Party and BBC’s Desert Island Discs and shows Vek in great form. Figure out what you think about it by watching below!

Kathryn Calder Announces Solo Tour

Canadian singer Kathryn Calder has just announced her first ever solo tour!  Upon joining The New Pornographers, her fan base grew and actually crashed her own website when she released the single “Slip Away” from her 2010 album Are You My Mother?  You can see her video for “Arrow” right here: and you can catch her on these dates:

May 06th @ Mt. Baker Theater, Bellingham, WA *
May 07th @ Boon’s Treasury, Salem, OR #
May 10th @ Moe’s Alley, Santa Cruz, CA #
May 12th @ Hotel Café, Los Angeles, CA # (Early Show – 8pm) 
May 13th @ Tin Can Alehouse, San Diego, CA #
May 16th @ New Parish,Oakland, CA #
May 18th @ Mission Theatre, Portland, OR #
May 19th @ Rendezvous, Seattle, WA #%
May 20th @ Biltmore Cabaret, Vancouver, BC #

* = w/ New Pornographers, Thao & Mirah
# = w/ Himalayan Bear
% = w/ Karl Blau

Noah and The Whale Debut New Video

NATW photo

Noah and the Whale have already released one video from the group’s acclaimed new album Last Night on Earth. The video for “L.I.F.E.G.O.E.S.O.N.”  is already out on the webs, but the band is wasting no time.

Noah and The Whale released a new video, directed and edited by lead singer Charlie Fink, for the song “Tonight’s the Kind of Night.” The video features a boy ditching his home town for the open road. Check it out right here.

Besides a new music video, the band has also announced plans for a May/June U.S. tour! You can see Noah and the Whale when they come through on these dates:

May 24 – San Diego, CA @ San Diego Woman’s Club
May 25 – Los Angeles, CA @ El Rey Theater
May 26 – San Francisco, CA @ The Independent
May 27 – San Francisco, CA @ The Independent
May 29 – Portland, OR @ Doug Fir Lounge
May 30 – George, WA @ Sasquatch Festival
June 2 – Salt Lake City, UT @ Club Sound
June 3 – Boulder, CO @ Fox Theatre **
June 4 – Denver, CO @ Bluebird Theater
June 6 – Santa Fe, NM @ Santa Fe Brewing Co.
June 8 – Austin, TX @ The Parish
June 9 – Austin, TX @ The Parish
June 10 – Dallas, TX @ Club Dada
June 11 – Houston, TX @ Fitzgerald’s Upstairs
June 13 – New Orleans, LA @ One Eyed Jacks
June 15 – Atlanta, GA @ Variety Playhouse
June 16 – Raleigh, NC @ Lincoln Theater
June 17 – Washington, D.C. @ 9:30 Club
June 18 – New York, NY @ Irving Plaza

** newly announced date

Morning Birds Birds Release New Single for Upcoming Album

The Morning Birds’ new single, “Heart’s Desire,” is a soothing, relaxing ballad to be included on their second album,The Quickening, releasing on April 26.

The co-ed duo consists of Jennifer Thorington and Samuel Marcus who complement each other’s comforting vocals. Markus has a raspy sensuality while Thorington has a higher pitched, pleasingly frail voice, nicely fitted for this lullaby of sorts. In an added push for beauty, sorrowful strings come in half way through the song. This song could be a good option for setting the mood after coming home from a lively Saturday night, but certainly not for getting pumped up beforehand.

NXNE Announces 2011 Line Up

North By Northeast (NXNE) recently announced the second wave of bands for the 17th edition of the festival, taking over Toronto June 13-19, 2011. Now confirmed for the event are Devo, Descendents, Stars, The Pharcyde, Men Without Hats, Digable Planets, Twin Shadow, OFF!, Art Brut, Shad, Land of Talk, Chad VanGaalen, and Cults. They join previously announced acts that include The Dodos, Deerhoof, Hot Water Music, The Bouncing Souls, and Anti-Flag, Dum Dum Girls and others.

All NXNE Festival passes and wristbands are now on sale, available at Early-bird pricing for NXNE Priority Passes is available through April 25. And, the complete NXNE Music line-up and schedule, NXNE Film schedule and additional NXNE Interactive programming will be announced over the next few weeks. Stay tuned!

R.I.P. Gerard Smith. >> Song of the Day: TV on the Radio – “Wolf Like Me”

After only being diagnosed with lung cancer last month, TV on the Radio bass player Gerard Smith has passed away this week at the age of 36. This came as a shock to the entire indie world. The band was more than hopeful that Smith would beat the diagnosis. Just releasing their latest record Nine Types of Light
last week, it is the last TVOTR album he recorded with the band. Smith was unable to tour with the group this time around due to treatment and recovery. TV on the Radio has canceled five upcoming dates on the tour so far this week so head to their website for more information.