Pygmalion Festival Announces Dates and Initial Lineup

The Pygmalion Festival (located in the idyllic Midwestern town of Champaign-Urbana, Ill.) recently announced their band lineup for this year’s music extravaganza. Currently the September 21-24 festival will include Japandroids, Toro y Moi, Deerhoof, Viva Voce, Unknown Mortal Orchestra, The Hood Internet, Mansions on the Moon, Ava Luna, Brass Bed, Adam Arcuragi, Jessica Lea Mayfield, Ivan and Alyosha, The Parsons Red Heads and more with Explosions in the Sky headlining. This year the festival will be celebrating the 15th anniversary of the indie label Polyvinyl Records. The all-day outdoor Polyvinyl showcase will feature the artists from the label’s roster including Deerhoof, Japandroids, Xiu Xiu, STRFKR, Owen, Someone Still Loves You Boris Yeltsin, and Asobi Seksu as well as the long awaited reunion of local heroes Braid. Early Bird Festival passes go on sale Friday May 6, 2011 at 12 p.m. CST and cost $60. The price will be increased to $65 and $70 at later dates. The festival pass guarantees admission into every show at the festival, depending on capacity limitations. Single tickets for every show will be available as well.

Single show tickets for Explosions in the Sky will cost $20 in advance. The Polyvinyl 15 Year Anniversary Party will cost $25 in advance. Both of those shows will go on sale Friday May 13, 2011 at 12 p.m. online and at local Champaign-Urbana outlets.


No Age – ‘Everything In Between’

No Age’s second album for Sub Pop, Everything In Between, builds upon the mastery of their dirty clean sound which traces its antecedents through New York No Wave, Modern Noise, Dream Pop, Hardcore and the kind of adolescent punk which sprung from the ether in LA over the past decade.

Dean Spunt and Randy Randall are musicians using a solid combination of guitar and drum and effects, aiding the normalization of other recent break out two-piece acts such as Japanther, the late and much lamented Death From Above 1979, The Black Keys and Japandroids who use noise in less an abrasive manner than in service to the songs.

This is most apparent on Everything in Between with the excellent “Fever Dreaming” whose distressed and scorched wails are the amazing guitar noises that are half broken robot, half toy keyboard and half screech of tires. Yes, 150% awesome. That’s “Fever Dreaming.”

Though they step out of the expected mold time to time on this album such as with the quiet duet “Chem Trails”, these soft butterflies of chaos are not the songs that you’ll find yourself returning to or adding to party playlists.

Everything in Between isn’t quite a move forward or evolution of the sound No Age has been kicking down stairs since their first compilation Weirdo Rippers. Rather, it’s a lateral move from the excellent Nouns whose combination of minimalist compositions and maximum rock n’ roll got No Age the well-deserved recognition beyond the loft show set.

Frankly speaking, despite the missteps and seemingly out of place songs, Everything In Between contains strong contenders for your year-end Songs of the Year listings while those same growing pains don’t quite coalesce just yet for No Age over all. It’s tempting to hope that this is somewhat of a transitional album and that they are able to once more make the musical leap from the growth demonstrated in Weirdo Rippers to Nouns.

Make no mistake, Everything in Between demands your undivided attention and you would do well to grant it.

Tennis Sign To Fat Possum and Prepare Debut LP

The duo from Denver that make up Tennis have been getting a lot of internet love this past year, so it’s unbelievable to find that not only have they not released an album, but it won’t be out until January 2011.  Hoping to not get outpaced by their own hype, Tennis seem to be going down the appropriate indie rock checklist at the moment:
release a 7″, shows, another 7″, more shows, internet acclaim, tour, sign to an accredited label…. and album. 

 If you’re wondering “what tour?” and “what accredited label?”  The answers are dates with The Walkmen and Japandroids, and Fat Possum.   If you still feel the need to figure this band out a little more before committing to a $8-$15 ticket, here is a link to the always lovely Daytrotter session they were featured on. 

Tour dates are below:

Oct 16 Omaha, NE The Waiting Room *#
Oct 17 Boulder, CO Fox Theater *#
Nov 11 Los Angeles, CA The Echo %
Nov 12 Claremont, CA Pomona College
Nov 13 Visalia, CA Cellar Door
Nov 14 San Francisco, CA Hotel Utah
Nov 16 Portland, OR Holocene
Nov 17 Seattle, WA Crocodile
Nov 24 Denver, CO Bluebird &
Dec 02 New York, NY Terminal 5 *
Dec 03 Washington DC 9:30 Club *

* = w/ The Walkmen
# = w/ Japandroids
% = w/ Sonny and the Sunsets

& = w/ Gauntlet Hair

Bonnaroo Announces 2010 Lineup

thubmnail icon: Bonnaroo 2010 Lineup

The moment you were sitting on the edge of your seat for is finally here. Bonnaroo has finally announced their 2010 lineup! The festival which takes place in Manchester, Tennessee from June 10th-13th, is filled to the rafters with stellar acts, and if you can believe it, there are more to be announced. The artists are quite diverse this year, more than ever. From Japandroids to Norah Jones, The Avett Brothers to Gwar. Oh and did we mention the Flaming Lips are playing Pink Floyd’s The Dark Side of the Moon? This is going to be one Bonnaroo to remember. Check out the list of artists so far listed below!

  • Jay-Z
  • Weezer
  • The Flaming Lips Do Dark Side Of The Moon
  • Phoenix
  • The National
  • She & Him
  • The Black Keys
  • Japandroids
  • Regina Spektor
  • Dr. Dog
  • Neon Indian
  • Kid Cudi
  • The xx
  • Damian Marley & Nas
  • Mayer Hawthorne & The County
  • The Postelles
  • OK Go
  • Wale
  • Gwar
  • Norah Jones
  • They Might Be Giants
  • Medeski, Martin & Wood
  • Steve Martin & The Steep Canyon Rangers
  • The Avett Brothers
  • Thievery Corporation
  • Manchester Orchestra
  • Dropkick Murphys
  • John Fogerty
  • Zac Brown Band
  • Tenacious D
  • Dave Rawlings Machine
  • The Entrance Band
  • John Prine
  • Lotus
  • Local Natives
  • Cross Canadian Ragweed
  • Ingrid Michaelson
  • Baaba Maal
  • Punch Brothers
  • NeedtoBreathe
  • Bassnectar
  • Monte Montgomery
  • Carolina Chocolate Drops
  • Rebelution
  • Jamey Johnson
  • Modern Mystery’s Top 25 Albums of 2009


    1. The Wooden Birds-Magnolia
    From the ashes of the classic indie band, American Analog Set, rose a new project from former frontman, Andrew “AK” Kenny, called The Wooden Birds. Shifting completely everything he’s done musicially, AK has come out with one of the most surprising releases of the year. Creating a record that is more folk than rock, no songs on the album contain any drums what-so-ever. The bass and vocals really take off and captivate you, the listener. The live sets of the song also include Matt Pond on guitar along with songstress Leslie Sisson. I’m not sure I’ve heard such a heart felt and warm record in the past 10 years.

    2. Julian Casablancas- Phrazes for the Young
    It’s been a long time since we heard from The Strokes as a unified band. A lot of fans were hesitant on the thought of a solo album by the charasmatic leader, Julian Casablancas, putting out music that doesn’t resemble his band at all. What a surprise it was when we found he took his love for a bit of 1980’s dance and incoporated it with his unforgettable voice and lyrics. The end result? One of the coolest records of the year. We’d expect no less from him.

    3. James Husband- Parallax 1
    It took 10 years for multi-instrumentalist and drummer from Of Montreal, James Husband, to create his solo album masterpiece. Husband is in the spotlight for the first time in his career and wow, is he certainly taking advantage of it. Providing one of the best indie pop records of the past year, he lets out a 60’s retro sound that no one can mess with. The end result is something as charming as it seems. Raw, catchy, and glorious.

    4. Alvin Band-Mantis Preying
    Rick  Schaier is not only an amazing drummer and artist, but he is also an extremely talented singer and songwriter. Schaier who spends most of  his time playing drums in The Miniature Tigers has begun a new chapter in his book in the form of ‘Alvin Band,’ this year and completely blew our minds. Blending a retro sound with updated electronics, this is one album you should pick up if you haven’t yet. The catchy hooks and vocals will only leave you wanting more. That my friends, is a good thing!

    5. Bishop Allen- Grrr
    It’s been a long night since Bishop Allen gained attention by two teenagers named Nick and Norah, and fans were at the edge of their seat wondering what the Brookyln line up would come up with next. Taking a further step into their brilliant indie pop sound, the band did not disappoint at all with Grrr. See it as the next chapter in the Bishop Allen movie, one that is bound to have many sequels in store.

    6. Grizzly Bear-Veckatimest
    Unless you’ve been living under a rock lately, you may have heard of a little band called Grizzly Bear. Somehow exploding this year, it was certainly one of the most highly anticipated albums of 2009. Every song is flawless. Catchy yet moody. Beautiful in every way. This album describes itself better than anyone ever could.

    7. Bat for Lashes- Two Suns
    Completely out of left field, the lovely miss Natasha from Bat for Lashes surprised us all this year with making a stunning, charming, and beautiful record. The combination of her voice and the spacey background music is enough to send chills down your spine. And it does just that. The haunting track “Daniel” captivated the attention of many, and the rest of the album is able to keep you around.

    8. Flight of the Conchords-I Told You I Was Freaky
    Yes, they are known for writing ‘funny’ songs, but on this record, FOTC became even witty and even more advanced it seems in their writing. Their songs, even though the lyrics are mostly ‘silly’, are composed perfectly from start to end. Jermaine and Bret are really on top of their game with this record. We can’t wait to hear more!

    9. Phoenix-Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix
    This band always makes a great record, and their 2009 hit was no different. Everyone wanted a piece of Phoenix and boy, did they get them. This classic indie dance pop record was a must have for everyone who ‘knew what’s cool.’ Apparently, this was the world.

    10. Girls-Girls
    An unlikely hit, this retro indie duo shocked us all with such a raw and appealing debut album. This lo-fi record filled with melodies, doesn’t need any frills or thrills to make it great. It hold’s its own firmly which is a hard thing to mess with.

    11. Cass McCombs-Catacombs
    12. Yeah Yeah Yeahs- Its Blitz
    13. Pains of Being Pure at Heart-Pains of Being Pure at Heart
    14. Casper and the Cookies-Modern Silence
    15. Headlights-Wildlife
    16. Japandroids- Post Nothing
    17. Cymbals Eat Guitars-Why There are Mountains
    18. Kevin Devine- Brother’s Blood
    19. Joan of Arc- Flowers
    20. Passion Pit-Manners
    21. The Antlers- Hospice
    22. Loney Dear-Dear John
    23. Neko Case-Middle Cyclone
    24. The Mountain Goats- The Life of the World to Come
    25. Dirty Projectors-Bitte Orca

    Modern Mystery’s Top 20 Songs of the Year

    2009 was an incredible year for songs. No doubt about it. Even some of the last minute yearly additions were able to sweep the early year competitors off of their feet. In 2009 there was a surprise around every corner with the quality of songs written. I’m not sure there could have been a better ending to the decade. Check out our Top 20 Songs below!

    1. Matt Pond PA- “Starting”
    2. Wooden Birds- “False Alarm”
    3. Grizzly Bear- “Two Weeks”
    4. The Drums-“Let’s Go Surfing”
    5. The Spinto Band- “Jackhammer”
    6. Sloan-“Take it Upon Yourself”
    7. Vampire Weekend-“Cousins”
    8. Ryan Adams-“Go Ahead and Rain”
    9. Julian Casablancas- “11th Dimension”
    10. Yeah Yeah Yeahs-“Zero”
    11. James Husband- “A Grave in the Gravel”
    12. Alvin Band- “Temple Pressure”
    13. Darwin Deez- “Constellations”
    14. Surfer Blood- “Swim”
    15. Bishop Allen- “Dimmer”
    16. Jupiter One- “Flaming Arrow”
    17. Phoenix- “1901”
    18. Pains of Being Pure at Heart- “Young Adult Friction”
    19. Japandroids- “The Boys Are Leaving Town”
    20. Julian Plenti- “Games for Days”