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March 27, 2008


Yesterday's addition to the list of 2008 SXSW streaming and downloadable music performances:

MP3 sets by Peter Moren and Birdmonster.

Jason Collett talks to the Winnipeg Sun.

You might notice we've steered clear of assigning the usual "indie-rock" or "singer-songwriter" tag to Collett's output. That's because he's uncomfortable with the labels, preferring to describe the record as simply "rock 'n' roll music."

"Part of it is just the frustration of always being referred to as roots-rock or indie-rock or a singer-songwriter," he says. "All of those terms I find to be really narrow in their definition. Rock 'n' roll is the perfect umbrella for blues, rock, jazz and country. I feel like I'm no different. And it's a fine, upstanding tradition, so slot me in there."

The Winnipeg Sun profiles Black Mountain.

Black Mountain's sophomore outing In the Future follows up on the promise of their debut, delivering another mind-altering pastiche of blast-from-the-past elements -- from the stoner-friendly psychedelic-rock of tracks like Stormy High and Tyrants, right down to the Pink Floyd-inspired album art (which Schmidt designed).

The Detroit Free Press interviews members of Tally Hall.

The Chicago Sun-Times offers a timeline to the 20-year musical career of Poi Dog Pondering.

The Hook interviews Caribou's Dan Snaith.

The Hook: If you had to choose between your musical career and your academic one, which would you choose?

Dan Snaith: I already have, I guess. I finished my third record when I was finishing my PhD, and that was literally the last time I ever really thought about mathematics, really— about three years ago. My dream was to spend all my time thinking about music and playing music— it's so much more fun than sitting in the math department.

The Daily Tar Heel examines the growing influence of music blogs (and decline of music magazines).

Heather Browne, who operates, said that while the world as we have known it is certainly changing, the state of criticism is just fine.

"I think the blogs certainly represent a democratization of the music press, because anyone can start one, and the Internet really gives everyone an equal opportunity for success," Browne said.

Mary Swan, author of the new novel The Boys in the Trees, talks to the Globe and Mail about her "literary friendship" with Alice Munro.

Blessedly, Munro "took me seriously," she says, and her encouragement helped Swan's own purposefulness. Swan and Munro, who's now 76, still keep in touch and, in fact, just after Henry Holt accepted The Boys in the Trees for publication, Swan sent Munro the manuscript. It is not, however, the sort of relationship "where she says, 'Oh, Mary, you shouldn't have done that.' We're not pals, either. If you needed a word for the relationship, I don't know what it would be - maybe 'literary friends.' "

Quality Boots shares live, lossless recordings of classic rock shows.

Cadence Weapon talks to Los Angeles CityBeat about his live shows.

“I approach shows from the aesthetic of shows I grew up going to, like hardcore shows, punk shows,” he said in an interview after the Echo date. “It’s me and a DJ and a microphone with an old school hip-hop aesthetic, but done in a punk sort of vocal style with electronic music.”

“I approach shows from the aesthetic of shows I grew up going to, like hardcore shows, punk shows,” he said in an interview after the Echo date. “It’s me and a DJ and a microphone with an old school hip-hop aesthetic, but done in a punk sort of vocal style with electronic music.”

Vampire Weekend drummer Chris Tomson talks to Dose.

The Vancouver Sun also profiles the band.

The New York Times reviews Stefan Merrill Block's debut novel, The Story of Forgetting.

“The Story of Forgetting” is a fresh, beguiling novel in what is sure to be the rapidly expanding genre of Alzheimer’s literature. As medicine alters life expectancy and genetic testing for the disease predicts destiny, these subjects invite new attention. In addition to looking toward the future Mr. Block has also done prodigious homework.

Rhett Miller of the Old 97's talks to Billboard about the band's new album, Blame It on Gravity.

The experience of recording 2004's "Drag It Up" was just as much of a challenge. "I'd say looking back at the last record, there's only two songs that would have made this record. The quality just wasn't there," Miller says. "On 'Drag It Up,' I let the other members run the show; I took a total step back. [1999's] 'Fight Songs' was called that because we fought about everything, and I was pushing everyone. The last one, I didn't push. I just let it happen and then they could feel what it's like to carry the load. Afterward, they were more willing to let me in. I'm the youngest member of the band, so there has always been this push back."

Fashhh lists the best dressed rockers.

Gene Yang, whose graphic novel American Born Chinese won the National Book Award, discusses the book with the Washington Post's Express.

Drowned in Sound interviews Jonas Stein of Be Your Own Pet.

What do you think’s changed on the second record – obviously the first one, it’s been described as ‘raw’ and ‘youthful’ – I know Get Awkward’s been pitched as a more mature record but to me it just sounds like an extension of the first?

Jonas Stein: Personally I just think it’s an overall better record – I think we’re better songwriters now. I think with the first one you can tell that we’re younger in it. I think regardless of the humorous, high school-esque lyrics and stuff you can hear a maturation in the band. I think it’s better put-together, we put more time into it and we knew what we wanted to do with it and didn’t have to get used to being in the studio.

On March 31st, Stereogum is posting a tribute covers album of Bjork's Post. The tracklist:

1. Liars - "Army Of Me"
2. Dirty Projectors - "Hyperballad"
3. High Places - "Modern Things"
4. Bell - "It's Oh So Quiet"
5. Pattern Is Movement - "Enjoy"
6. Evangelicals - "You've Been Flirting Again"
7. Xiu Xiu - "Isobel"
8. Final Fantasy & Ed Droste - "Possibly Maybe"
9. White Hinterland - "I Miss You"
10. El Guincho - "Cover Me"
11. Atlas Sound - "Headphones"

also at Largehearted Boy:

2007 online music lists
Daily Downloads
Try It Before You Buy It (mp3s and full album streams from this week's CD releases)
this week's CD releases


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