(from Brooklyn Vegan)
I have to admit, when I saw the original line-up for Pitchfork's Intonation Festival, I wasn't real impressed. All it consisted of was indie rock, indie rock, indie rock and more indie rock. Hardly any diversity at all...
However, since the original announcement was made, the line-up has been bolstered quite a bit. They've added some glitch pop courtesy of Four Tet, a little jazz influence from Tortoise, some mash-up fun with Diplo (DJ set) and underground hip-hop from El-P (DJ set). Now, most recently, they've added glitchy hip-hop savant Prefuse 73 to the live bill.
OK guys, you've got me...well done on the festival. I had been holding my nose up high, wanting to snub the fest due to its lack of diversity and excessive indie-rockness, but it's actually come together quite nicely. Plus, how can you be critical of a festival of this magnitude that only charges $22 bucks for 2 full days of music?? Now, I'm not saying I'm going for sure...(I'm still a bit allergic to outdoor festivals), but I've got to applaud everyone at the 'Fork for the effort.
Here's the latest schedule for the event:
Saturday, July 16:
1:00 Head of Femur
2:00 The M's
2:45 A.C. Newman
3:30 Magnolia Electric Co.
4:30 Four Tet
5:30 Broken Social Scene
6:30 The Go! Team
7:20 Prefuse 73
8:00 Death From Above 1979
DJ Stage-presented by Biz3
3:30 Laurent from Pelican
5:30 Will Oldham/Jean Grae
7:30 Will Oldham/Jean Grae
Sunday, July 17:
1:00 Thunderbirds Are Now!
2:00 Xiu Xiu
2:45 Out Hud
3:30 The Hold Steady
4:30 Andrew Bird
6:30 The Wrens
7:30 Les Savy Fav
8:30 The Decemberists
DJ Stage-presented by Biz3
3:30 Reine from Dungen
Check out www.intonationmusicfest.com for more info and the latest updates
The Ponys - Another Wound (Sweet Nothing)
Limited edition EP released to coincide with their upcoming European tour. Features a mix of rare and out-of-print singles and album tracks, including a cover of the Descendents' "Good Good Things" unavailable elsewhere.
A Band of Bees - Free the Bees (Astralwerks)
Deerhoof - Green Cosmos [EP] (Kill Rock Stars)
Esthero - Wiked Lil' Grrls (Reprise)
The Fall - Complete John Peel Sessions (Castle)
Longwave - There's a Fire (RCA)
Low - Live in Europe [DVD] (Plexifilm)
The Posies - Every Kind of Light (Ryko)
Various - Six Feet Under Soundtrack [Vol. 2] (Astralwerks)
Admitingly, even though I've always liked Eels and never thought of them as a one-hit wonder band, I wasn't always convinced of their brilliance. I loved "Novocaine..." and "Your Lucky Day in Hell" from the debut, and its follow-up, Electro-Shock Blues was easily one of my favorite records in 1998. However, by the time the third record came out, Daises of the Galaxy, I had kind of lost interest in the band and probably never would even thought of making an effort to go see them live.
Then in 2001, Everett dropped the Souljacker record and my love of Eels was completely restored. In fact, I would say that I went from a casual admirer of the band, to a full-fledged fan thanks to this record. Combining Everett's usual dark and cynical lyrics with the gritty guitar work of album collaborator John Parish (PJ Harvey), Souljacker just flat out rocked. And then I saw them live...
Even though my faith had been restored in the band, for some reason I still wasn't expecting their live show to be that good. I couldn't have been more wrong. As much as Souljacker rocked, the Souljacker tour rocked even more. I was totally blown away and afterward I was completely convinced: Everett is truly a musical genius.
Seeing Eels perform last week week at Park West, I was convinced of this fact once again. This show rocked just as much, but in a completely different way. This time around, Everett brought with him a completely different backing band, both in terms of members , musical style and approach. Actually dubbed as "Eels with Strings," the performance consisted of Everett (lead vocals, acoustic guitar, piano, celeste, pump organ) backed up by a 4-piece string section, a bass player on an acoustic upright and a sixth member ("The Chet") who played everything from a lap steel guitar to the saw to a minimal drum kit. Everett sounded great as always, the string arrangements were achingly beautiful and the subtle augmentation of lap steel guitar and musical saw sounded absolutely amazing. The music of Eels had never sounded better and once again I was blown away by Everett and his assembled supporting cast.
If you've never seen Eels live or maybe haven't even heard the name mentioned since 1996, do yourself a favor and check them out next time they are in town. I don't think Eels are a band you have to see live in order to "get it," but it certainly helps. Also, if you happen to be checking out Everett and Co. this week on the East Coast, don't leave the show when the lights come up. If you stick around, you'll be treated to one last encore performance from the band, with Everett returning to the stage in his jammies. (seriously, I'm not making this up...) Did I mention this guy is a mad genius??
Listen and watch a live performance of Eels with Strings on KCRW here
Listen to E playing solo and chatting it up with former Sex Pistol Steve Jones on LA's Indie 103 here
Be on the lookout for a tall light-skinned brother with dimples...wearing a black kangol, sweatsuit, gold chain, and sneakers. Use extreme caution, he is notorious and can crush you like a jelly bean.
Yes, that's right, kicking off this year's Taste of Chicago music line-up is none other than ol' skool hip-hopper LL Cool J. Apparently taking some time off in-between roller derby and mechanical shark movies, Cool J will be gracing the Petrillo Band Shell stage tonight with opening act Faith Evans. Don't call it a comeback though, he's just filling in as a last-minute replacement for Lauryn Hill.
Since this a free event, part of me wants to walk over to Grant Park after work, grab a giant turkey leg and see if Cool J busts out some old school bangers from Bigger and Deffer. Then again, trying to navigate through a concrete jungle of smoky grills, vast amounts of garbage, screaming kids and about ten thousand people filling their pie holes with the greasiest food they can find on a day that is literally 95 degrees in the shade isn't exactly my idea of good time. On second thought, I think I'll just go to Reckless instead and see if I can find some old Cool J in the dollar bin.
Biz 3 has sucked me in once more with yet another great DJ night at Sonotheque. This time they've snagged young UK grime sensation Lady Sovereign for an exclusive stop on her upcoming U.S. club tour on Friday, July 8. Midwest grime fans, consider yourself extremely lucky...this one of only 8 stops on her upcoming stateside tour. In fact, according to her website, she'll be coming to Sonotheque fresh from a gig at the Fabric in London on July 1 and will already be back overseas by the 15th to play the Dour Festival in Belgium. Trust me, you won't want to miss this rare opportunity to see the self-described "multi-talented munchkin" live here in the States.
What?? You've never heard of Lady Sovereign?? Here's more from the Sonotheque website:
Taking over the UK is 18 year old Lady Sovereign who is already bouting with the best of them. She just signed a huge world wide deal with Universal and is down musically with the likes of Basement Jaxx, Obie Trice, Dizzee Rascal, The Streets and D12. A tiny 5 foot 1, she delves out the beatdown on the alternative microphone with witty lyrics and a flirtatious cheekiness that brings to mind no other. Her music is the current sound of inner city estates in the UK, obvious influence taken from popular dance movements such as grime, garage, jungle, ragga, hip hop and r & b. America has not yet seen anyone like of Lady Sovereign.
Tag: Lady Sovereign
Laura Cantrell - Humming by the Flowered Vine (Matador)
Telepopmusik - Angel Milk (Capitol)
Wooden Wand & The Vanishing Voice - Xiao (Troubleman Unlimited)