Archive for April, 2008

Meds mp3s miscellany

April 26, 2008

What do you mean you missed the Tonight Show?

You know, after an episode featuring Old 97’s, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Marilu Henner, Inside the Actors Studio’s b*****t crazy James Lipton, and American Idol’s most recent bootee, the heavily-inked, goth-Gaelic howler, Carly Smithson, playing the “Six Degree of Separation” game gets so easy as to be pointless. This, ladies and gentlemen, was one for the Pop Culture Ages. So shame on you for falling asleep on the couch.

(A.I. Pop Quiz: Is Carly capable of singing a song without wrestling it to the ground, kneeling on its throat, and beating it into submission? Answer: No, though I will miss her tattooed freak of a husband. Also, someone have better damn well taken some pictures in that NBC green room! – f.e.)

But not to worry, lazybones, as Hit By A Train’s staff psychologist, Dr. David Welsh, understands the deep-seated need of Old 97’s fans to replay a performance which, for my money, sounded better than any of their previous broadcasts, save perhaps their Austin City Limits gig in 1998. So Dr. Welsh wants to help you. Thus, he suggests you watch this clip three times a day, after meals, with a glass of water; encourages you to stay on your other meds (especially those little pink ones); and says to tell you that your mom doesn’t really hate you; that’s just how she is. Enjoy!

And if you just can’t wait ’til May 13, the 97’s now have three tracks from Blame It On Gravity available for download at Amazon.com: The pants-off, booty-shaking “Dance With Me,” the beautiful jangle-fest of “No Baby I,” and Murry’s epic and aching “Color Of A Lonely Heart Is Blue.” And if the sound doesn’t quite compare to that on the CD, you can also catch a terrific video of the band playing the sterling Hammond & Miller composition, “My Two Feet” here.

Finally, we’ve noted here with sadness the passing of the print edition of No Depression magazine. However, NoDep co-editor Peter Blackstock notes there is a

“…long feature on the 97’s in the new/final [#75 May/June] issue of ND, by the way, written by accomplished author and former 60 Minutes producer John Marks.”

“Claiming it’s the best piece anyone has ever written on the 97’s would sorta be dogging my ownself since I wrote the cover story on them for us back in ND #21; but I’ll take my lumps, cuz I think it’s true.”

So there’s yet another reason to get down to your local bookstore, stat, before the final issue of America’s finest music mag leaves the shelves for good. Cheers – frank

There will be a cd release party at The Granada Theater May 13th from 7-10 pm. The boys will not be performing, but will be there. The bonus dvd will be screened. This is free and no need for tickets.

If you havent seen the video for “My Two Feet” it is available on the MySpace page. We might be adding the performance from The Tonight Show very soon.
~ michael

Just a few quick notes today. Murry’s album, I Don’t Know Where I’m Going But I’m On My Way *is* “on the way,” but you guys need to realize it’s an old-fashioned, DIY indie record, so have some patience and keep checking Amazon, Miles of Music, and the like. You’ll get your copy. Mike Orren of Pegasus News already has his and gives it this well-deserved, glowing review. Also, I just received this today:

Your readers might be interested in a Houston show happening this Sunday, featuring a rare solo performance – Murry Hammond will be headlining at Walter’s on Washington.

First to go on are a group of Austin and Houston singer-songwriters, with Murry finishing things off.

The show is Free, 21+.

Yeah, I think they would be interested

Also, the Old 97’s have added an in-store appearance in Dallas, on May 31 at Good Records, scheduled for 2pm. But if you just can’t wait to Blame It On Gravity, head over to the Old 97’s MySpace page, where they’ve got two new complete tracks posted, and have promised to add two new tracks every few days from now until the May 13 street date.

Of course, don’t forget to catch the band tomorrow night, April 24, on the Tonight Show on NBC, and stay tuned for news on a really neat event we’ve got cooking for all Old 97’s fans on May 6. More soon! – frank

Listen up to biog

April 14, 2008

So Amazon today released clips from the entirety of Blame It On Gravity, and they give a good, if incomplete, impression of an album that, over the past two weeks, has planted more little sonic earwigs in my brain than any other Old 97’s CD. It’s that good. Enjoy. And order that deluxe CD/DVD combo version too, while you’re over there listening.

Finally, over on the Hitchhiking list, Jack Epsteen posted an outstanding review of Rhett Miller’s April 12 show at LA’s Largo, during which Rhett announced that both the 4/11 and 4/12 shows were being taped for a possible live release, which he called The Interpreter – Live at Largo. And man, I’m down with anything that gets “Bonfire” out on a CD ASAFP. Cheers – frank

Pixies paste

April 8, 2008

You guys may recall that on the CD insert of one of its final issues, (Mars Volta’s on the cover) Harp Magazine featured Rhett Miller covering the Pixies “Wave of Mutilation” in a terrific acoustic arrangement with a wild psychobilly guitar break. Then, when Rhett mentioned at some of his shows that “contractual issues” prevented him from crediting the player involved, I became really intrigued, and began asking around various lists to see if anyone could tell me exactly who played with Rhett on that already hard-to-find track.

Well recently I got a note from someone, who shall remain nameless (but you know who you are, so thank you!) and it seems Rhett has recently let slip that the guitar player involved is none other than The Pixies own Joey Santiago. Neat, eh? Now good luck finding that CD! – frank

I love this time in the album release cycle, and here’s just one more reason why: Ladies and Gentlemen: Set your DVR’s, VCR’s, Super 8’s or kinescopes, as the Old 97’s return to the Tonight Show on Thursday. April 24, to play “Dance With Me.”

In other new album news, Murry Hammond’s second solo album, I Don’t Know Where I’m Going But I’m On My Way is due April 21 at Amazon, Miles of Music, and elsewhere. But for now you can hear it in all its complete, high-lonesome glory, streaming on Murry’s Last.fm page, complete with two free mp3 downloads. We’ll have more details here soon, including an entire page devoted to the album, and here’s a hint: If you even have half a shine for the 97’s, Ranchero Brothers, or maybe the just the Carter Family, trains, or Jesus, you’re gonna love this album!

I Don't Know Where I'm Going...Also, you may recall when, last August, I started pimping some great new, coming-soon, in-concert shots taken of the 97’s at their Lancaster, PA performance, by Jeff Uleau. Then… and then… nothing. Getting busy with other stuff, I dropped the ball. Until now that is. Just click on over to HBAT’s “New Images” page and scroll down to catch these babies in their oversized splendor. And those aren’t the only good new 97’s pics to surface of late. Over on the Hitchhiking list, Casey Jones left a link to some outstanding snaps of the band he took at their recent SXSW gig at Stubb’s in Austin. Check ’em out.

Finally, back to Blame It On Gravity news: Did you know that it will be available as a CD/DVD combo? Tru dat. The bonus DVD gets you a 44 minute documentary, covering the history of the Old 97’s, and features live performances of 97’s classics and cuts off BIOG. (Note to self: I know bootlegging is bad for the biz, but criminy, did labels used to include so many extra goodies with CD’s, to get us to buy instead of steal?) And have you heard the one about I Love Math joining the 97’s for several of their upcoming tourdates? That’s no joke, but it still makes me happy.

All right, enough of the navel-gazing. Y’all check back soon for more stuff! Cheers – frank

“Under Salim Nourallah’s production, the music’s so taut, it bounces like a trampoline – and jumps with the same sense of adventure. And the guitar work… well, Miller rightly says Bethea has hit a career peak; whether he’s twangin’ or rockin’ – or both – it’s nothing less than sterling throughout.” That’s all from a great new interview with Rhett. Enjoy! – frank