Tuesday, 31 March 2009

Plug Your Gig On Radio 1 - NI

transmission via Rory McConnell's personal assistant...

From this evening you'll be able to phone up at any time and leave your message, then I'll transfer it and broadcast it on tomorrow's Radio 1 show.

Only me or Steven from the show will hear this message so don’t be afraid that you're broadcasting live to the nation or anything. If you make mistakes or stumble please just start your message again. It can all be edited before going on air.

If you could record your different gig list by 6pm every Wednesday then that would be fantastic.

The number is:

0845-3004399

FERRIS SPEAKS @ NIMIC MANAGEMENT MASTERCLASS 30/04/09

“Effective management is an absolute essential for success in today’s Music Industry”

MANAGEMENT MASTERCLASS

Thursday 30th April
University of Ulster, York Street, Belfast
2.30pm – 5pm
* Limited space available - only 50 places *

Two of the most respected and knowledgeable figures in the UK music management world – Jon Webster and Stuart Worthington - will be giving a masterclass event at the York Street Campus of University of Ulster on Thursday 30th April. They will be joined by local manager/label boss Andrew Ferris who recently secured a 5 album deal with Atlantic Records for Derry band Fighting With Wire.

Stuart Worthington is recognized as one of the world’s leading authorities on music management and has also managed a range of artists including The Happy Mondays. Jon Webster is currently the Chief Executive of the Music Manager’s Forum and has huge experience in the industry including instigating the Mercury Music Prize and heading up the Virgin Record label. Andrew Ferris is CEO at Smalltown America Records and currently manages And So I Watch You From Afar.

This event will provide those attending with invaluable advice and guidance on a wide range of the management issues and practices in the current music industry.

Full content and format for the event are yet to be finalized - so if you have key areas that you would like to be addressed or questions that you would like to ask please email: ross@nimusic.com

Attendance at the event is free of charge, however numbers are restricted and we would advise that you book your place(s) as early as possible. The event takes place at the University of Ulster Belfast Campus (AKA the ‘Arts College’) and runs from 2.30pm – 5pm

For further info or to register your place email: sandra@nimusic.com

* Only 50 places available *

Last We Versus The Shark UK Show Tonight


I'm off to hook up again with We Versus The Shark for the final show of their UK tour with Pulled Apart By Horses at Madame Jo Jos in London tonight (tickets still available) before they head on to Europe with Blakfish. It was great to finally meet the band face-to-face for the first time in Brighton on Sunday after talking online since 2005 and their set at the Prince Albert was as energetically nuts as I'd hoped despite the band being leaden with a bumper portion of Harry Ramsden's fish and chips (do all Americans refer to batter as 'shell'?), that also saw a whiteknuckle-tight Pulled Apart By Horses come a-cropper. The WVTS set was recorded for posterity and we hope to host some of those live tracks including their hilarious onstage Sonic Youth Knock Knock joke in the near future.

Pulled Apart By Horses also fall into the jolly nice chaps category and here's a snippet from James Horses' Myspace blog from Brighton.

today we are in brighton. all of the gigs have been amazing and its nearly over sadly. jeff, luke, neil and scott from the shark are some of the most delightful americans we have ever met. bloody lovely chaps and we will miss them dearly when they jet off around europe with blakfish (god forbid). they took all our instruments last night in guilford at the end of the set. lee cracked his kick drum and somehow my 2 piece guitar is still working. playing
prince albert tonight in brighton. stayed with dave from tubelord last night (thanks dave and daves mum) and him and joe cooked us some mean ass breakfast. hopefully they'll pop down tonight so we can booze them up. man, does any one else really wanna hear the tube album as much as me? they wont give us a copy. twits. anywhoo. the lovely ste and laura from blood red shoes have given us a room tonight. we slept in our van for the tour with them earlier this month so i think they'd like to give us some bloody shoey rooms. what lovely chaps n’
chapesses.

ASIWYFA on Total Rock Radio

The band that lazy bloggers everywhere are calling ASIWYFA continue their domination of the airwaves - Set Guitars To Kill has been added to Total Rock's A playlist. The station can be heard online, on DAB and on cable/satellite TV.

A LIST

ANYTHING GOES * AC/DC * COLUMBIA *

SET GUITARS TO KILL * AND SO I WATCH YOU FROM * SMALLTOWN AMERICA * NEW

THE MODERN ROME BURNING * ANTI-FLAG * HASSLE *

DEGENERATED * BACKYARD BABIES * NUCLEAR BLAST * NEW

TRAPPED IN THE NIGHT * DEATHLIKE SILENCE * SPINEFARM *

FLATLINE * DUFF MCKAGAN'S LOADED * CENTURY MEDIA * NEW

ANYTHING 'CEPT THE TRUTH * EAGLES OF DEATH METAL * SONY * NEW

HEY MAN NICE SHOT * FILTER * RHINO * NEW

ANY MEANS NECESSARY * HAMMERFALL * NUCLEAR BLAST *

FOREVER * IN THIS MOMENT * CENTURY MEDIA * NEW

SET TO FAIL * LAMB OF GOD * ROADRUNNER *

SUNSETS ARE FOR MUGGINS * LEATHERMOUTH * EPITAPH *

BEAUTIFUL MOURNING * MACHINE HEAD * ROADRUNNER *

DIVINATIONS * MASTODON * REPRISE *

GEARS OF WAR * MEGADETH * ROADRUNNER *

LIVING IN THE CITY * MILLION DOLLAR RELOAD * LIME *

DESOLATION ROW * MY CHEMICAL ROMANCE * REPRISE *

I'D COME FOR YOU * NICKELBACK * ROADRUNNER *

LIFELINE * PAPA ROACH * INTERSCOPE *

BROTHER * PEARL JAM * SONY *

DEUS EX MACHINA * PURE REASON REVOLUTION * SUPERBALL *

SOUND OF MADNESS * SHINEDOWN * ATLANTIC *

BLOOD FIRE WAR HATE * SOULFLY * ROADRUNNER *

ON OUR WAY * STEREOSIDE * BIELER BROS * NEW

START OF SOMETHING * STONE GODS * STONE GODS *

YOUNG BLOODS * THE BRONX * WICHITA *

MARY ANN'S PLACE * VOLBEAT * MASCOT *

B-MOVIE BABYLON * WEDNESDAY 13 * DR2 * NEW

STA Hearts Skibunny


As longtime STA followers will know, we have a - let's say - 'chequered' history with the NME but one thing we do agree with them on are how good Skibunny are. The NME recently praised them as "Belfast's no.1 remixers, promoters and commotion causers... they do something pretty special to the crowd" and their excellent Uncle Yoshitomo mix does something pretty special to Don’t Waste Time Doing Things You Hate by And So I Watch You From Afar. Check it out on Skibunny's Myspace.

Skibunny are also a three piece band (DJs Tanya singing and playing guitar and Mark on bass guitar joined by Christine on drums) and better bittersweet electro-pop you will not find. I'm currently listening to a sneak preview of one of their new songs. For the 9th time in a row.

If you're going to the Camden Crawl in April, both the band and likely DJ sets are a must for your itinerary. A rather fine looking Skibunny "F**k Dance Let's Art" Oyster card wallet can also be snapped up for a mere £2 from their online store.

ASIWYFA Kerrang Feature

Click image to biggify

ASIWYFA Fresh Meat for Zane Lowe


Radio 1's Zane Lowe continues to have a place in his heart for STA, making And So I Watch You From Afar the lead Fresh Meat track on yesterday's show which you can listen to for the next week here on the greatest invetion of the 21st century so far, the BBC iPlayer. And So I is played at about 90 minutes into the show.


Monday 30th March
19:00

Reading & Leeds announcement

Reading & Leeds mix:
Kings of Leon - 'Molly's Chambers' (Sony)
Kings of Leon - 'Charmer' (Columbia)
Kings of Leon - 'Sex on Fire' (Sony)
Arctic Monkeys - 'Brainstorm' (Domino)
Arctic Monkeys - 'When The Sun Goes Down' (Domino)
Radiohead - 'Bodysnatchers' (XL)
Radiohead - 'Creep' (Parlophone)

Paul Smith from Maximo Park

Maximo Park - 'Wraithlike' (Warp)
Calvin Harris - 'I'm Not Alone' (Columbia)
The Maccabees - 'Love You Better' (Polydor)
Passion Pit - 'The Reeling' (Columbia)
Gallows - 'The Vulure Part 2' (Warner Bros)

Hottest Record In The World
The Streets - 'In The Middle' (679)

Empire Of The Sun - 'We Are The People' (Virgin)
Middle Class Rut - 'I Guess You Could Say' (Bright Antenna)
Zen - 'Your Shout' (Grid)

Single of The Week
Dizzee Rascal & Armand Van Helden - 'Bonkers' (Dirtee Stank)

Reaction Record
Apes & Androids - 'Nights Of The Week' (Modular)

20:00

PJ Harvey & John Parish - 'Black Hearted Love' (Island)
Scott Matthews - 'Fractured' (San Remo)
Hockey - 'Learn To Lose' (Virgin)
Sebastian Tellier - 'Kilometer (Aeroplane Remix)' (Record Makers)
Noisia - 'My World' (Renegade Hardware)

Album of The Week
Mastodon - 'Crack The Skye' (Reprise)
Track: 'Oblivion'

Snoop Dogg - 'Snoop Dogg Millionaire' (White Label)

Fresh Meat 1
And So I Watched You From Afar - 'Set Guitars To Kill' (Smalltown America)


Fresh Meat 2
The So So Glows - 'My Block' (Green Owl)

Fresh Meat 3
New Villager - 'Rich Doors' (Moodgadget & Twosyllable)

Graham Coxon - 'Sorrow's Army' (Transgressive)

Marilyn Manson Phoner Pt 1
Marilyn Manson - 'We're From America' (Polydor)

Marilyn Manson Phoner Pt 2

Micachu & The Shapes - 'Lips' (Rough Trade)

Public Service Blogcast Episode 30



This week: the clock is ticking for you to grab the exclusive And So I Watch You From Afar bonus disc of live recordings and rarities - available when you purchase their album from the STA store ahead of release date. You now only have how ever long is left between you reading this and April 13th! Also - Dananan: best band in the UK. Discuss.

Public Service Blogcast Episode 30
33 minutes 24 seconds
Recorded 30/03/09
Tracklisting
00.29 Dananananaykroyd - Chrome Rainbow (from Hey Everyone album - Best Before)
03.49 The Moi Non Plus - Ha Ha Ha (from self-titled album - SUBBACULTCHA)
06.38 Disappears - Old Friend (from Old Friend single - self-released)
08.43 Load.Click.Shoot! - Young Pretenders (from Young Pretenders single - Vacuous Pop)
12.13 We The Faceless - Firefly
15.27 Skeletons - Pack the Suitcase
19.44 The Stetz - Alibi
22.22 How Dare You - Cases And Carriers (from Comfort Road album - Fail Safe)
25.43 Harrison Hope - If We're All Stars (from home produced 10 track EP)
29.58 Panama Kings - Golden Recruit (from forthcoming Golden Recruit single - Broken Sound Records)

If you have any feedback or want to get a track played, get in touch - email blogcast@smalltownamerica.co.uk.

Monday, 30 March 2009

ASIWYFA - In Cargo Collective: April 09




MusicPlaylist
Music Playlist at MixPod.com



We Rock Like Girls Don't
How Did It Get To This
Distort - CD
Electrifying female rock'n'roll duo's thrillingly ferocious debut. "The kind of awesome rock record we don't hear often enough" 8/10 NME. " the album they've always threatened" Organ CD of the week

I Monster
A Dense Swarm of Ancient Stars
Twins Of Evil - CD/Limited edition LP + Bonus 7”
The full I Monster artillery has been employed. Ranging from vintage keyboards through traditional bass, guitars, drums, sax, flutes and percussion to the modern computer. Joyous offbeam kaleidoscopic pop.

And So I Watch You From Afar
And So I Watch You From Afar
Smalltown America - CD
Debut album from Belfast, punk-post-rock quartet: heavy, huge and hopeful. For fans of Fugazi, Sigur Ros and DJ Shadow.

Jeremy Jay
Slow Dance
K Records CD/ LP
Jeremy Jay’s new album “Slow Dance” is a romance of dreams and realities, full colors and disco lights. Listeners are invited to the dance floor with a whisper.

Jeniferever
Spring Tides
Monotreme – CD
Sweden’s Jeniferever return with second album of shimmering aural landscapes and poetically poignant lyrics. As heartfelt and beautiful an album as you are likely to hear all year.

Fridge
Early Output
Temporary Residence - CD
Groundbreaking experimental rock trio featuring Kieran Hebden (Four Tet) & Adem collects their finest moments from their early years. Includes 6 previously unreleased tracks!

Henry's Funeral Shoe
Everything's For Sale
Alive records - CD/ LP
Great primitive psychedelic blues from South Wales brought to you by the same label that released the debut albums of the Black Keys, Two Gallants.

Muck & The Mires
Hypnotic
Dirty Water Records - CD/ LP (with 3D glasses!)
Winner of Little Steven's Battle of the Bands competition and produced by the legendary Kim Fowley, this is hook-laden Hamburg Beatles meets the Ramones garage punk.

Roxy Epoxy & The Rebound
Band Aids on Bullet Holes
Damaged Goods - CD/ LP
Debut solo album from The EPOXIES lead singer Roxy, the love child of Gary Numan & Siouxsie if there ever was one, punk electronica for the masses!

Caroline Weeks
Songs for Edna
Manimal Vinyl - CD/ LP
The debut from Bat for Lashes multi-instrumentalist, Caroline Weeks once known as Ginger Lee. 9 tracks of minimalist UK folk, with lyrics borrowed from the late American poet, Edna St. Vincent-Millay.

The Chatham Singers
Juju Claudius
Damaged Goods - CD/ LP
Second album from Billy Childish’s delta blues outfit, features the single ‘An Image Of You’ and features special guests James Taylor and Graham Coxon on a few tracks.

Butcher Boy
React Or Die
How Does I Feel To Be Loved - CD
Second album by indiepop octet from Glasgow. Features Radclife and Maconie Record Of The Week. "A classy record from start to finish" -Stuart Murdoch, Belle & Sebastian.

ASIWYFA Bonus Disc Details!

Judging by the unprecedented number of pre-orders (A Smalltown America record-breaker no less), most, if not all of you, will already know that when you make an advance purchase of the forthcoming aural juggernaut that also goes by the name of And So I Watch You From Afar by And So I Watch You From Afar, you will receive a lovely bonus disc.

With that in mind, we are now happy to announce the bonus disc details. There will be 8 tracks in all, which includes older deleted material and a smattering of breathtaking live recordings.

The tracklisting is;

1. Intro
2. Marching Over The Coals
3. Clench Fists, Grit Teeth...Go! (Live)
4. Holylands, 4am (Live)
5. The Machine (Live)
6. theseRIOTSareJUSTtheBEGINNING (Original Version)
7. Mount Kailash
8. The Voiceless (Beatdown Motorcore Version)

Remember, once the official street date of Monday 13th April arrives, the bonus discs will be no more.

So if you haven't preordered yet, take a cyber-run over to the store. If you're outside the United Kingdom, hit up the ASIWYFA myspace where you can purchase directly via paypal.

Saturday, 28 March 2009

Public Service Blogcast Episode 29



This week: live tracks from Calories and 4 Or 5 Magicians from last month's STA Thermals show.

Public Service Blogcast Episode 29
35 minutes 54 seconds
Recorded 28/03/09
Tracklisting
00.29 Left Side Brain - Weaponise (from Collider album - Sugar Shack Records)
03.43 4 Or 5 Magicians - Nice Little Earner (recorded live at the Lexington, London 09/02/09)
06.35 4 Or 5 Magicians - Preaching To The Conversed (recorded live at the Lexington, London 09/02/09)
10.34 Ark People - When the Lights Go Out (from Brattwell Demos)
15.06 The Callas - Lipstick (from Lipstick single - Out Of Tune! / www.a-m-p.gr)
17.14 Jeniferever - Green Meadow Island (from Spring Tides album out 13th April - Monotreme Records)
22.38 Air Waves - Lightning (from self-titled 5 track EP - Catbird Records)
25.26 Calories - To Encounter A Dear (recorded live at the Lexington, London 09/02/09)
27.07 Calories - Adventuring (recorded live at the Lexington, London 09/02/09)
29.55 Smallgang - Factory (from Labours album - Hooked Up Records)

If you have any feedback or want to get a track played, get in touch - email blogcast@smalltownamerica.co.uk.

Whatever Happened To... Part 1

I'm often asked whatever happened to Jetplane Landing - what are the original members up to these days? In this three part series we'll be finding out.

Part 1
Raife Burchell
(Drums) - as part of a lucrative sponsorsed parenting deal, congratulations are in order to the former powerhouse sticksman of one of the most cherished post hardcore outfits of the early noughties; Raife and "wife" Sarah have had a beautiful baby girl called Skype Video Calls. Aw, bless.


New Baby Presentation by Skype


Friday, 27 March 2009

ASIWYFA Invade The Mainline

Rory and Tony from ASIWYFA dropped in to Radio Foyle to co-present last night's edition of Electric Mainline with our good friend Stephen McCauley. The guys premiered a number of tracks from the forthcoming album and talked about their influences, how the band came to be and how they approach making music.

If you missed it, or where unable to listen as you live outside of the Derry area, never fear as thanks to the ever reliant iplayer, you can check it out at anytime and as many times as possible until next Thursday - Click here to listen

On the subject of the forthcoming album, we are taking preorders for the album over at the STA store. If you order the album prior to it's release date of Monday 13th April, you will also receive an exclusive bonus disc featuring nine previously unreleased tracks.

If you live outside of the UK, you can preorder the album directly from the band's myspace page.

Thursday, 26 March 2009

ASIWYFA Rock Sound Feature


Here's Tim Newbound's feature on ASIWYFA from the new issue of Rock Sound magazine, in newsagents now.

They defy pigeonholding and have no respect for your eardrums; Belfast’s And So I Watch You From Afar share their mission statement with Rock Sound.

“Music is number one, we don’t sit around discussing what sort of feeling we intend to evoke or any other new age bullshit with our tunes,” says And So I Watch You From Afar guitarist Rory Friers. “We want to push boundaries with what we’re doing and put across that we care so fucking deeply about the music we produce; we really hope that comes over when you listen to it. Most importantly, we wanna RAWK.”

The Northern Irish four-piece are certainly following this manifesto with their self-titled debut full-length: as emotively atmospheric as it is devastatingly overpowering, it’s an album that demands to be played loud. Although this sonic assualt is administered through largely vocal-free songs, the quartet refuse to be dubbed ‘instrumental’ – and they strongly reject the ‘post-rock’ tag.

“Post-rock is all about building textures and timbres within the music, and when it’d done right it’s incredible; I just think we have too many riffs and changes of tempo to be in that particular bracket,” reasons Rory. “There are some fucking amazing instrumental Fugazi tunes, remember – I don’t think anyone would call those legends post-rock. We certainly wouldn’t.” He adds: “We were borne out of jamming and we have never once stated that we were strictly instrumental – we herded in 40 of our friends from the Northern Ireland scene to record a huge choir on [album track] ‘Don’t Waste Time Doing Things You Hate’, and it turned out amazing, even if we do say so ourselves. Plus, the album is littered with ‘Whoops!’ And ‘Heys!’. Are those the actions of an instrumental band? We think not!”

Given their class, journalistic superlatives should be rightly flying these guys’ way soon, although they have experienced the downside of dealing with suspect media types already. “The most disgusting thing we’ve had to endure while on tour had to be this fraud journalist who turned up at a London show and proceeded to give you lovely people, professional journalists, a bad name,” says Rory. “He stuffed his nose full of coke, drank the majority of our rider, ate our food, didn’t bother watching us and went on to pretend he did, while contradicting himself constantly. He came up to us and said, ‘It was an awful show, nobody was watching’. I interjected and pointed out the place was near capacity, we’d had an amazing reception and went down really well, to which he responded, ‘Yep, it was great, the place was rammed’. The final straw was when he said, ‘Your singer was out of key the whole time!’ Huh?! The guy was an ex-pat from Belfast and also bad-mouthed a lot of people we really respect from home. I think his name was BALLBAG.”

Formed a couple of years ago and with mini-album ‘This Is Our Machine And Nothing Can Stop It’ already under their belts, the band now intend to “tour the fuck out of” their self-titled debut, as they contine to push those boundaries and set about writing album number two. Here’s to the RAWK.

Sounds like: Your most beautiful dreams and worst nightmares spliced and translated via the medium of intense volume

Tim Newbound

Wednesday, 25 March 2009

We Versus The Shark Tour Diary Part 4


Jeff from We Versus The Shark is blogging his band's UK experiences on the road with Pulled Apart By Horses for Athens Georgia online arts magazine Flagpole. Thanks to both for allowing Jeff's tour diary to be carried on the STA blog and here's chapter 4.

Fourth Installment (25/03/09)

That's (obviously) the front page of the map for how to get around London via the underground subway system. Throughout the tube, you can find other pieces of art amongst the billboards for Paul Blart: Mall Cop and Vincent Gallo shilling for H&M (goddamn him). I don't want to fall into the familiar lib American spiel about Europeans and their high appreciation for the higher arts, but this is simply not something you would see in even New York. It speaks of a different attitude. It's nice.

That said, Tom Hudson, vocalist for Pulled Apart By Horses and our host here in Leeds for the past few days, rides a similar train to us through his "artistic" "career": he works a moderately blase job by day to support his habit of needing to act the fool in front of crowds. Between rent and needs, it's a scrape-by situation. I'm excited to get to the Nordic regions--we've just confirmed a show in Oslo--and see what socialism has done for them over there. Especially considering Neil's New Hampshire-borne libertarian streak.

The shows have been consistently fun, and tonight was our first headlining show. Our Middlesbrough venue, Uncle Albert's, was a perfect antidote to the shitshow of a barricaded-stage bougie joint we played in York, which shall remain nameless (The Duchess). I've just assumed that pretty much no one knows us around here, and we've been enjoying the comfy slot of playing before the Horses, who are newly minted up-and-comers according to the NME. Tonight, we played last of four bands and played to about forty kids. Despite my lingering stomach problem, god damn if that isn't a nice experience.

Anyway, I'm trying to avoid boring folks with details about backstage amenities (or lack thereof) or garbage soundguys. Do you guys want to hear about that stuff? I doubt it. Next post I think I'll get into one of the more bizarre aspects of British culture: the tabloids.

Jeff Tobias

Pulled Apart By Horses Competition

We Versus The Shark tourmates Pulled Apart By Horses are running a competition on their myspace to win tickets to the London show on March 31st as well as a signed copy of the latest PABH single. Good luck!

We Versus The Shark Tour Diary Part 3

Jeff from We Versus The Shark is blogging his band's UK experiences on the road with Pulled Apart By Horses for Athens Georgia online arts magazine Flagpole. Thanks to both for allowing Jeff's tour diary to be carried on the STA blog and here's chapter 3.

Third Installment: Sure Do Feel Like a Homemade Piece of... (24/03/09)

Waking up too early after--let's face it--a bender...is unpleasant.

This is how I woke up a few days ago. Feeling weirdly defeated for no reason, falling back asleep quickly became a distant possibility. I sat around listening to Wire and eventually took my first shower of tour. (I have no one to impress in this company.) I immediately felt around 70 percent better and found my tourmates waking up, for the most part. We quickly ascertained the following: we were locked in (after staying in the upstairs apartment belonging to a pub, and we didn't feel the need to wake our hosts to unlock the door) and the power was out. So, without internet for constant conversation points, we just sort of hung out. It was really nice.

Later we made the hour-long trek to Sheffield from Leeds. Soon after arriving, I came down with a weird stomach/chest ailment. Not debilitating, but very uncomfortable and definitely mobility-limiting. It sort of zapped my sense of humor, and I spent a great deal of the show lying down on a couch in the rear of the venue (a fairweather but decent bar named the Harley). As the opening bands played, my mental train of thought considered the following bullet points, not necessarily in this order:

How sick am I?

Do I have a hernia?

Do I have an ulcer?

If I have these problems, will I continue the tour?

Do I value the anticipated good times of my bandmates over my personal comfort?

Could the band tour as a trio without me?

Do I want to return home early, secretly?

If so, why would I feel that way?

Do I have cancer?

How would that affect my relationships?

Who would I want to play at my funeral? (Mouser, I later determined)

If I still feel this way tomorrow, what would the doctor situation be?

Are Luke and Neil right: Is it gas?

As we started our set, I announced to the crowd: "I live my life in constant pain occasionally interrupted by less pain. We're We Versus the Shark from Athens, Georgia, which is in America." We've collapsed into communicating almost entirely in quotes from comedians, television, and film. We played and I went back to the couches to lie down. Only two hours later did it occur to me: I think I took too much Ibuprofen with too little food. That can fuck with your stomach, right?

Jeff Tobias

We Versus The Shark Tour Diary Part 2

Jeff from We Versus The Shark is blogging his band's UK experiences on the road with Pulled Apart By Horses for Athens Georgia online arts magazine Flagpole. Thanks to both for allowing Jeff's tour diary to be carried on the STA blog and here's chapter 2.

Second Installment: Nice Castle, Guys (23/03/09)

A proper update would probably be in order. Instead of the revving up/down of time, i.e. minutes become hours, hours become days, etc. you can basically throw time out of the window on this tour. My cell phone is off -- no international usage -- and I have no watch, plus I'm still shaking off the lingering effects of jet lag; suffice to say, my sense of "when" is markedly dulled, to say nothing of "how," "why," and so on.

We've got four gigs under our belts so far, and they've gotten exponentially better every day. That probably has less to do with the tour getting "up and running" and more with the holy gradient towards the weekend: everything has the potential to suck until you get to Friday. And as such, our Glasgow show on Wednesday was a fine warm-up to four enthusiastic Scots. We retired to nearby Edinburgh at the apartment of Gavin, our affable tour manager. I slept in and effectively missed out on all sorts of awesome castles--thanks, guys. In theory, they looked like this:

Next stop was Newcastle, where good buddies of Pulled Apart By Horses were waiting at their dynamite venue, The End. Club on the ground floor, apartments of the staff above: ideal. A photographer kept doing that move where he tosses the camera every which way without looking through the lens so there are a few pictures on the internet of us looking like spastic giants; many, many chins. The show wrapped up with Neil, our illustrious touring guitar player, reciting the entirety of Notorious B.I.G.'s "Juicy" immediately before we adjourned to the nearby gay bar, Camp David.

Then we played Barrow, which was a sort of out-of-the-way place full of kind folks who couldn't stop reminding us that we have no business coming to Barrow. It was all meant with a sort of goofy self-deprecation, and while I know young people are supposed to hate where they're from, we were sort of taken aback. The show turned out just fine, and afterwards we got our first dose of ASDA, Walmart's UK proxy. Just as terrifying!

And last night was our Pulled Apart By Horses' hometown show in Leeds. A note on Pulled Apart By Horses: this is a pretty wacky group. It's sort of like the spastic hardcore genre stripped of all and any pretensions. They put on one fuck of a show, and we've been struggling to keep up. Not only that, but offstage they're hyperactive as all get out, compared to our sort of, I dunno, generally bookish/spaced-out vibe. Neil is sort of a social godsend on tour for We Versus the Shark; whereas we sort of huddle around quietly until the set and then stumble around sweaty and brainless afterwards, Neil is always up for a pint and quick with a joke. He is also blogging over here.

I'm going to try to do these with more frequency so I can be a bit more detailed. Pictures and videos will be on their way as well. I'm at the mercy of wireless networks and time, so please be patient! Next stop: Sheffield.

Jeff Tobias

We Versus The Shark Tour Diary Part 1

Jeff from We Versus The Shark is blogging his band's UK experiences on the road with Pulled Apart By Horses for Athens Georgia online arts magazine Flagpole. Thanks to both for allowing Jeff's tour diary to be carried on the STA blog and here's chapter 1.

First Installment: Jetlagged in Newcastle (22/03/09)

Flagpole readership is about as interested in that as we were in experiencing it. So we'll skip the awful terrible and get to Day 2: as of Tuesday, things were generally looking up for We Versus the Shark in our first bout of international touring!

We flew into London, via Washington DC, via Charlotte, via Atlanta. After crashing super-hard at our booking agent Dawnie's Bethnal Green apartment, we roused ourselves for a tube ride (THAT'S WHAT THEY CALL THE SUBWAY HERE, CULTURAL DIFFERENCES, ETC.) to a bar called the Mucky Pup. Each pint of Guinness came with a free shot of Jameson and the gratis jukebox was stacked with all the American classics: the Melvins, the Jesus Lizard, and the Stooges. Then, on four hours of sleep, we drove, via bus and van, the eight hours from London to Glasgow.

And these are the two themes of our journey thus far, officially four days in: long bouts of travel followed by blitzkrieg spurts of revelry. And I'm about as far from complaining as you can get, but as of yet, I've reached few concrete revelations about the differences between Yanks and Brits. Everyone's generally very nice, and beyond that, I'm too jet-lagged to really expound further. The West is the West is the West, I guess; I have to admit, however, that I sporadically wake up from naps in the van briefly terrified that we're about to have a head-on collision.

One thing I have thought about a bit is the subject of the Athenian doppelgangers of our lovely tourmates, the Leeds, UK-based band Pulled Apart By Horses. To wit:

PABH's Robert Lee = Gasmasks & Matchsticks' Tom Brandow

PABH's Tom Hudson (he's less bearded these days) = The Empties' Ben Wills

PABH's James Brown = Mouser's Colby Carter

and finally:

PABH's Lee Vincent = Reno 911's Ben Garant

Okay, minor cheating employed. Anyway: last night was our first show, we were fed tons of free vegan meals, and no one came. More to come!

Jeff Tobias

Sunday, 22 March 2009

SXSW Update - Days 3 & 4

Battling toothache has been a theme of my SXSW this year. Literally, the most pain I have ever experienced was last night at 1AM where if someone had a handy chisel and hammer, I would have gladly let them knock it out. No amount of whiskey would shake the thing - damn it, the only distraction was all the incredible music on display.

Still today is my BIRTHDAY - happy birthday me. I can't remember exactly what happened on Day Three - apart from the fact we saw Japanther at Mrs Bea's and it was entirely off the chain. The kids were ripping the shit out of the veranda that they played on. Todd P is the man responsible for putting the programme at Mrs Beas together. A bit of a cult hero in his own right, Showpaper promotes all ages DIY shows in the NYC and tri-state area. The SXSW issue had a red on white Raymond Pettibon pen and ink - and it is gorgeous. Daniel said he would scan it on his return.

The satellite activity around SXSW this year is as strong as the programme itself - okay, so the sound isn't necessarily as good as it could be but when you have lineups as good as this (click to make big) it's totally worth coming here without a delegation pass and seeing all the bands play for free.
Yesterday we went to Waterloo Park for most of the day to another unofficial SX gig, free and all ages (you only get ID'd if you want to drink) - and saw The Bronx, Crystal Antlers, Thermals, Jason Lyttle, Monotonix and Cursive. Do you know what I mean>?! How fucking lethal is that for free. The Bronx were at the top of their game, brilliant - loved them.

The toothache won out at about 1AM and I had to bail out, I missed MSTRKRFT and the police on horseback riot - but do you know what, it doesn't really matter - this year's SXSW was for me about sorting out where we're going with the label, reassurance about the things that we are doing being really, really good and being inspired by some incredible musicians (particulary The Paper Chase) to create more and be braver about music I write.

Public Service Blogcast Episode 28



This week: live Rolo Tomassi, Six Nations sale fever and the RCRD LBL download blog.

Public Service Blogcast Episode 28
26 minutes 20 seconds
Recorded 21/03/09
Tracklisting
00.29 Rolo Tomassi - Oh, Hello Ghost (from Live At Eurosonic EP - free mp3 download with every ticket purchased from Music Glue)
04.48 Kochka - Man Of Letters (from forthcoming The Dead Room Party single - self-released on April 1st)
07.42 Tiger! Shit! Tiger! Tiger! - Solving Algebra Equations While On Percocet (from Be Yr Own Shit album - Toloselatrack/Audioglobe)
09.47 Experimental Dental School - Tear Brush (from Forest Field album - free download)
13.33 The Neat - CarMex (previously unreleased)
15.52 Ono Palindromes - Eat Your Make-Up (from Kitty Magic EP - self-released)
18.29 Peter Kernel - Gusto (from The Ticket EP - self-released)
23.10 Theoretical Girl - Rivals (free download from RCRD LBL)

Coming soon: STA at SXSW and a takeover from And So I Watch You From Afar. If you have any feedback or want to get a track played, get in touch - email blogcast@smalltownamerica.co.uk

Saturday, 21 March 2009

Public Service Blogcast Episode 27



What do you get when you combine the talents of Laura Wolf, Heartbeeps and Christopher Alcxxk? The answer is London/Cambridge lo-fi pop trio Internet Forever and they're playing the 5th Public Service Broadcast Club free afternoon ROTA gig along with Tim Ten Yen and Pope Joan on Saturday 4th April at Notting Hill Arts Club in London.

Thanks to Laura, Heartbeeps and Christopher for recording this takeover and also to Matt Littler for coming up with the new blogcast logo.

Public Service Blogcast Episode 27
19 minutes 58 seconds
Recorded 09/03/09
Tracklisting
00.09 Internet Forever - Break Bones (previously unreleased)
02.07 Imp - Swooping Eel (previously unreleased)
06.39 Incredible Weapons - Solipsister (from Incredible Weapons EP - self-released)
08.59 The Cardboard Band - Melted Hearts (previously unreleased)
12.49 Milk Breath - Oh, Foul, Referee! (previously unreleased)
17.38 Internet Forever - Pages Of Books (previously unreleased)

If you have a suggestion for a future takeover or want to get a track played, get in touch - email blogcast@smalltownamerica.co.uk

We Did It!


Ireland win the Grand Slam! We're taking five minutes out from the party to let you know that the 1/2 price sale begins tomorrow. Head over to the store tomorrow to take part in Grand Slam fever!

Rock Sound #121

The April issue of Rock Sound magazine (with 30 Seconds To Mars on the cover) is packed with And So I Watch You From Afar goodness - a 2 page feature (which will be posted online later), the 8/10 album review below and grabbing pole position on the covermount CD with the epic A Little Bit Of Solidarity ahead of tracks from STA chums the Tupolev Ghost and the Thermals plus new Mono and Therapy?

Just when you thought you couldn't give a fig for yet more instrumental post-rock, along come these upstarts to clout you upside the head for taking your eye of the ball. Kissing cousins To Monument From Masses, ASIWYFA deal in a similar type of dynamic crashes, danceable rhythms and Dave Knudson guitar squiggle, even giving their songs similarly state-smashing titles to again raise the question of just how political you can really be while barely uttering a word. True to form, the band occasionally lose themselves amidst untold minutes of panoramic fartarsery, but there's always a tubby fucker of a riff lurking on the horizon to ensure things come back to like with another reassuring thunk.
For fans of: From Monument To Masses, Pelican, Russian Circles
8/10

Both ASIWYFA's double A side single and the album itself accompanied by an exclsuive bonus disc of unreleased material can be purchased now from the STA store.

Friday, 20 March 2009

The Grand Slam

Tomorrow is a big day for Ireland. If Ireland's rugby team beat Wales tomorrow, it will secure the Six nations Championship and in the process Ireland's first Grand Slam (clean sweep of victories) since 1948.

It's one of those rare occasions when everyone on the Island, North and South, can unite behind a team without any religious or political nonsense getting in the way.

For those of us not at SXSW, we're having a massive party to watch the game tomorrow, and we have an incentive for you all to get involved and root for the Boys in Green as well.

If Ireland get the job done, by DEFEATING Wales and securing the Grand Slam, we're gonna have a half-price sale from Sunday through to Tuesday. Everything in the store from STA001 (Jetplane Landing - Zero For Conduct) up to and including STA50 (We Versus The Shark - Dirty Versions) will be half price.

So starting making your wish lists and sending over good vibes to the Green half of The Millennium Stadium in Cardiff.

C'mon Ireland!

SXSW Update - Days 1 & 2


Vivian Girls, Fighting With Wire, Ladyhawke, Boys Noize, Lovvers, Tara Jane O'Neill, Danana, Twelves & Decemberists on the first night.

Tiger City, Ungdomskulen, Efterklang, Rye Rye, Golden Filter, Little Boots and Data Rock last night.

SXSW hasn't disappointed me at all this year, it's still got the same atmosphere, inclusiveness and excitement. You could argue that there isn't an MGMT for 2009 - Passion Pit only have the one 'big tune' and LadyHawke is great but not an act of the same proportion. In the grand scheme of things that doesn't really matter - this is a fantastic year for music.

I wonder why a band as good as Danana.. won't sell tens of thousands of records - IMO the best British band here this week. One would think that to repackage all that's best about alt-90s-american indie, turning it up to 11 and LOVING what they do would be enough. Sadly, I think it's just too far ahead of the game. Not that they give a shit - they're here and they rock every room like it's their last.

Parental pride is being felt for the FWW lot - they're nailing every gig they're doing - it's a big year for them as they begin working in the US; they're off to an amazing start.

I absolutely LOVED Tiger City last night - Hall & Oates liquid soul played by four very unlikely Brooklynites (pictured). Check out their myspace.

Wednesday, 18 March 2009

DYRTFT Ulster Hall Gig on BBC2


























ATL TV has let us know that highlights of last week's 'Do You Remember The First Time?' Ulster Hall gig went out on BBC 2 NI in primtetime last night. The show featured highlights of the mammoth 14 act bill including Snow Patrol, Ash, Divine Comedy, Duke Special, Therapy?, Fighting With Wire and Foy Vance among many more. God bless the BBC iPlayer where the highlights show can be seen until next Tuesday!

SXSW Schedule - Wednesday, March 18th

This is for me more than anything as it's handy to look at on my phone! But essentially this is where we'll be tomorrow. Things listed at the same time are in case we can't get in. Come say hi!

11:30 - Meet The Irish Speed Networking Session (on panel)

12:00 PM
Annoying Things That Bands Do at 18ABC

12:00 PM
K Records at The Indie Village - Austin Convention Center

12:00 PM
Relapse Records at The Indie Village - Austin Convention Center

12:30 PM
Belfast Nashville Songwriters Party at British Music Embassy at Latitude 30

01:00 PM
File Under: Music at The Indie Village - Austin Convention Center

02:00 PM
DD/MM/YYYY at Day Stage Cafe - Austin Convention Center

02:00 PM
DD/MM/YYYY at SESAC Day Stage Cafe Austin Convention Center Control_play

02:00 PM
Fearless Records at The Indie Village - Austin Convention Center

03:00 PM
Crash Course #4: Online Resources at 17AB

03:00 PM
Licensing for Unsigned Bands at 18ABC

05:00 PM
Fighting With Wire @ Pure Volume House

08:00 PM
Gallows at Emo's Main Room Control

09:15 PM
Chief at Dirty Dog Bar Control

09:45 PM
The Von Bondies at Vice Control

10:00
Alaska In Winter
Volume

10:00 PM
Royal Bangs at Spiro's Control

10:00 PM
Tara Jane O'Neil at Beauty Bar

10:30
The Besties
Maggie Mae's
“Girl Rock Camp Austin”

11:00 PM
Lovvers at Red 7 Patio Control

11:00 PM
When Dinosaurs Ruled the Earth at Scoot Inn Control

11:00 PM
White Circle Crime Club at The Parish Downstairs Control

11:00
Lovvers
Red 7 Patio

11:15 PM
Tara Jane O'Neil at Beauty Bar Backyard

11:30 PM
Dananananaykroyd at Dirty Dog Bar Control

11:30
Dananananakroyd
Dirty Dog Bar

12:00 AM
DD/MM/YYYY at Emo's Jr Control

12:00 AM
Magic Magic at Spiro's Control

12:00 AM
Past Lives at Red Eyed Fly

12:00 AM
The Decemberists at Stubb's

01:00 AM
Skibunny at Barcelona Control

01:00 AM
The Bronx at Red 7 Patio

01:00 AM
These Arms Are Snakes at Red Eyed Fly Control

00:00
Sky Larkin - Red 7 Patio

00:00
The Decemberists - Stubb's

01:00
Fake Problems - Music Gym Patio

01:00
Shout Out Out Out Out - Karma Lounge

01:00
The Bronx - Red 7 Patio

01:00
These Arms Are Snakes - Red Eyed Fly

01:00
This Will Destroy You - Soho Lounge

Tuesday, 17 March 2009

We Versus Incorrect Press Listings

Reminder: the Pulled Apart By Horses/We Versus The Shark London show at Madame Jo Jo's is Tuesday 31st March NOT TONIGHT as I incorrectly read in the listings in yesterday evening's newspapers. The show is 18+ and you can buy tickets here.

US Trip - Diary 1

I've been in New York since Sunday and been glad of these few days to acclimatise pre-SXSW; last year the jet-lag was rockin well into the third day. The reason for the trip is mainly to attend AIM's Mission To America - which is a trade mission for indies to come and pick up business. Yesterday we had a live touring masterclass and an online publicity masterclass; the main people to check out I reckon are ArjanWrites.com and Ariel Publicity both of which gave powerpoints that I'll write and see if I can get for you guys to post here.

After this we went to the British Embassy for drinks, which was quite posh - me on the balcony there >>

My mate Alexi just got offered a new contract at work - so he's buying himself a jazzmutant lemur - hooray! When did making music get so fun - what about the ten hours a day freezing your balls off in a practise room in pump street.

Part #1 of my super exciting SXSW 09 blog

I am currently sat on a bench in Heathrow terminal 4. I am listening to Adrian Aardvark (one of my favourite discoveries of recent months - I recommend starting with Bones Hurt, it's a super collection of BURSTS OF LO FI EMOTIONAL PAIN). In a while I will probably watch this film.

Four hours until check-in. Seven hours until wheels up. I have no idea how many hours until I land in Austin. I'm hella excited.

MORE SOON.

Monday, 16 March 2009

Fighting With Wire @ The Dirty Dog Bar (SXSW)

SXSW attendees take note - Gallows, Juliette Lewis's new band, STA faves Dananananakroyd plus FWW play a Clash magazine event on Thursday afternoon. Fighting With Wire on stage at 3pm.

Venue Address: The Dirty Dog, 505 E 6th St, Austin, TX 78701
http://www.dirtydogbar.com

Sunday, 15 March 2009

Public Service Blogcast Episode 26



Do you like Pixies? Talking Heads? Daft Punk? Phil Collins? If you replied 'yes!' 4 times then this show is STA's gift to you. No no, please - it's our pleasure.

Public Service Blogcast Episode 26
33 minutes 55 seconds
Recorded 14/03/09
Tracklisting
00.29 The Woo!worths - Konichiwa (previously unreleased)
04.38 Fighterplanes - FP2 (previously unreleased)
10.57 The Blindies - Funny Guy (from Sub Rosa EP - self-released)
14.21 Tudor Tron - Geometry (previously unreleased)
17.05 Creature With The Atom Brain - Black Out, New Hit (from I Am The Golden Gate Bridge album - Jesusfactory)
19.36 Dead Wolf Club - Radar (from Whammy Happy - SVC Records)
22.07 Empires - Valmont (from Howl free download album - self-released)
25.54 Goes Cube - Grinding The Knife Blade (from Another Day Has Passed album - The End Records)
29.10 We Rock Like Girls Don't - Hip To You (from How Did It Get To This? album - Distort Records)
32.05 Cardiotonica - Viaduct (from self-titled self-released album)

If you have any feedback or want to get a track played, get in touch - email blogcast@smalltownamerica.co.uk

Public Service Blogcast Episode 25



Presenting the latest free downloads by Johnny Foreigner and Stricken City plus Fighting With Wire go to SXSW while the rest of the STA roster get up close and personal with the UK...in the live sense of course.

Public Service Blogcast Episode 25
28 minutes 40 seconds
Recorded 14/03/09
Tracklisting
00.29 Johnny Foreigner - Ohai, Sentinels (free download)
02.29 My First Tooth - Margaret Yen (previously unreleased)
05.40 Cactus's - Tiny Teeth (from Tropical Terror EP - free download)
08.55 Clip Stamp Fold - Tourist (previously unreleased)
12.30 Stricken City - Don't Spit At Her Face (demo) (free download)
16.39 Sunny Day Sets Fire - Stranger (from Summer Palace album - Wonderboat)
21.32 Cryptacize - We'll Never Dream Again (from Dig That Treasure album - Asthmatic Kitty Records)
24.46 Holmes - David Letterman (from Wolves album - Black Star Foundation)

If you have any feedback or want to get a track played, get in touch - email blogcast@smalltownamerica.co.uk

Saturday, 14 March 2009

FWW: Need To Know

The latest issue of US magazine Alternative Press feature Fighting With Wire alongside other UK bands such as OK Pilot, Johnny Foreigner and Trencher in it's annual 100 Bands You Need To Know feature.

Formed in 2003 by Jetplane Landing guitarist Cahir O'Doherty, Fighting With Wire were nearly wrapped up by disillusioned members after bieng consistently ignored by managers, labels and distributors. "We cannot escape these songs," says O'Doherty, laughing. "A few years back, we were going to do one more tour and then pack it in. It all went crazy, and now we find ourselves off to America to try all over again with songs that are five years old." With new wind in their sails and an album to be recorded before the end of 2009, the adventure is on for Fighting With Wire. "We really don't know what will happen," O'Doherty admits. "We come from the early 90s school of rock. American alternative music from that time is our major influence. Three Irish shits trying to sell that back to America 15 years down the line; you know, I'm not really sure how that will go down."

For those who rock: Burning Airlines, Kerbdog, Pixies

Calories Free London Show

Home of the legendary STA All-dayers, 93 Feet East, are hosting a free night on Friday 20th March featuring Calories plus loads of other bands. Calories are on stage at 11pm - come on down and buy them a drink!

Friday, 13 March 2009

Get This Into Your Face Immediately


Praise from Clash magazine for Calories' debut - "Frustrations surface, demons exorcised: while Calories are a new band on their first album, there’s experience here that goes far deeper than a ten-track indie-rock debut.

The Birmingham trio had another musical life as the tipped Distophia, albeit then as a four-piece; the band released a great EP, ‘Soda Lake’, and soon enough put an album proper, ‘Beat Dyslexia’, into the hands of their label Necessary. Unfortunately, at the time said label was rather wrapped up in the success Hard-Fi had brought them, and Distophia’s itchy, fidgety brand of boisterous rock and roll wasn’t money to their ears. Delay became suspension, and the album never saw official light of day. If you’re lucky enough to find a promotional copy in a second hand store, for crying out loud buy it.

Or, alternatively, simply pick up ‘Adventuring’ – while this record’s not as texturally rich as ‘Beat Dyslexia’ promised, its stripped-back style exudes accessibility aplenty, each and every furious riff tempered by a developed pop sensibility. It resonates with potential realised that had to sit in stasis for an unexpected period of time, subsequently appearing better formed than many a debut from a domestic rock act you’ll hear in 2009. Across the course of less than a half-hour (the guys don’t mess about – track starts, bang, you’re in) earholes are subjected to a barrage of acerbic guitars, percussion that kicks and spits, and sing-along-friendly vocals which imply that Calories could well become a live circuit favourite.

The energy exuded on ‘Adventuring’ certainly suggests its makers are well-schooled in the field of live performance, and to these ears it could well be recorded ‘as live’, the crackle in the studio air caught for posterity. As such, some will hear imperfections – not every line is delivered note perfect. Others, though – hopefully more – will feel enthused by a record that rattles along at such a frantic pace that it could only have been made with spirits running superbly high. It’s a kick up the arse guaranteed to get you out of your seat, each blustering number packing a punch firmer than the last.

But never is catharsis filtered through cacophonies neglecting essential melodies – so while ‘Oh K.S.S.T.’ is as incendiary as indie-rock can get before passing into the punk pigeonhole, it opens itself up between the frenetic six-string work and therefore presents an ‘in’ for those who wouldn’t normally be transfixed by aggressive music. ‘A Bear A Bison’ is an even better balance of twin traits of fury and focus, coming on like the best song Seafood never wrote; ‘Same Ideals’ sounds every inch a meeting of musical minds between Idlewild and Johnny Foreigners; and the title track rockets into view like Los Campesinos! with Roman Candles up their backsides. Throughout the ghosts of US indie past are present, too – listen sharply and, yeah, there’s your Pavement and Weezer echoes.

While opportunity knocked only to give their previous incarnation the cold shoulder, ‘Adventuring’ is strong enough to make further comments of Calories resembling Distophia mark II redundant, for this is a new voice demanding attentions in its own right. So, from now on less of ‘formerly known as’, more of ‘get this into your face immediately’."

Alan MX: Wet Finger In The Ear


Today's offering from A New Band A Day is one Alan MX! Here's what they have to say...

"Now and again, a band or artist pokes a hole through the beige dullness that is the musical space-time continuum. This doesn't necessarily mean that they've done anything particularly inventive - anyone can play a bunch of samples in a semi-random order and cause ears to prick up - but Today's New Band innovates, teasing something new out of the limp heap that is pop music.

This wet finger in the ear of drab musical ordinariness is Alan MX, whose music is skewed, restrained, and new. Warpsicord is one of the most accurately descriptive song titles you'll find - a song that forces mutations from simple musical instrumental sounds. This is where awkwardness and lushness overlap, creating its own musical Venn diagram.

Captain America Video tickles Twee-Pop, Lo-Fi, swooning instrumentation, thumping disco pop and twitchy laptop fiddling, but doesn't linger near any of them for too long. Songs like Flesh Emergency are a delight - airy, shiny and sleazy all at once. His songs never trip over their own strangeness, but create their own space where it all just seems right.

Scuttling to form his own path, Alan MX's music is unusual enough to live and clever enough to thrive. Lovely. Listen here!

Labels: lithe, loopy"

Thursday, 12 March 2009

Ul-STA Hall Reopens: Good Excuse To Get Hands In The Air


























STA assisted with the re-launch of the Ulster Hall this week in Belfast, with loads of our acts performing across two stages. Clone Quartet, Fighting With Wire, And So I Watch You From Afar and even me... (pictured) made an appearance.

I got an excited email from one of the concert organisers this morning - "Its worth mentioning that when a venue gets £8.5 million put into it some people in Council might think that the room should be kept for classical music and conferences. The effects of Monday will be felt right across the city whether people realise or not. Some very powerful people sat up and went 'Holy Shit!' (I'm paraphrasing btw), and everyone of you were vital to making that happen."

Listen Again To The Whole Show

Fighting With Wire's Media Training seems to be working.

Full photostream here from the BBC

Thanks to Wally for providing the percussion for JPL and to Tony ASI... for providing the vocals in the middle bit to 'Know Your Enemy'. Gotta end this post with the masters... a finger to the land of the chains!


How To Get Ahead In Adventurtising

This just in from Calories' Marketing department:

"So we got given an advertising budget by Smalltown America, it was really exciting coming up with ideas for how we could spend the money; we did a whole day of casting and workshopping with actors from all over the West Midlands (some of them came all the way from Halesowen) before settling for second best in the form of James and Neil. Basically their fees were so high we could no longer afford the lighting tech or boom operator so Coalville Light and Sound (Loughborough) took the pinch.
Here's what we came up with.



If you think you can do better please do get in touch.
Peace be with you.
Pedix"

Wednesday, 11 March 2009

Digital Sugar

Fighting With Wire's latest offering the single Sugar is now available from the Irish iTunes - you get Sugar + two unreleased B-sides (So Sincere and After The Show) as part of the same download EP. Make sure you get that instead of the album track by accident!

Club:STA presents The Voiceless

We are delighted to announce details of our very first club night to take place in Northern Ireland. In association with Masons Bar, Club:STA will have a monthly residency in their upstairs venue. Our aim is to showcase the best underground talent in Northern Ireland as well as that from further afield.

Our launch night will be on Thursday 23rd April. We are delighted to confirm And So I Watch You From Afar as the headlining act. As well as being our own launch night, this event will also serve as the Derry launch for ASIWYFA's forthcoming album, copies of which will be available on the night. Also on the bill will be Derry-based minimalist-electronica artist Mezzanaesia. We will be announcing further additions to the lineup in the next few weeks.

You can buy tickets for the show right now @ We Got Tickets.

Oh, and we have a poster for the show as well. Designed by illustrator/genius/maverick Matt Littler - we will be releasing a limited batch of exclusive prints for sale after the event. Take a look!





Sunday, 8 March 2009

We Versus Unimaginative Tour Promotion


At STA we're big fans of gig art so we're stoked with the poster for We Versus The Shark's UK jaunt with Pulled Apart By Horses that begins the week after next. Click the tag for ticket links.

And So I Watch You From Afar - Preorder the album now!

You can now secure your copy of ASIWYFA's forthcoming eponymous long player through the STA store. Whilst the album has a street date of Monday 13th April, if you preorder the album you'll not have to wait so long to get your hands on this beauty as we will start dispatching the album on March 30th - a whole two weeks earlier!

But there's more; All preorders received will come with an ultra exclusive bonus disk containing unreleased material.

You're sold aren't you? Head over to the store right now!

Friday, 6 March 2009

Dracula's Castle

Fighting With Wire have just posted up the 12th Edition of what started out as a tour diary, but is now quickly becoming their very own sketch show.

Join the Fighting With Wire show as sound man Graham is killed for complaining, Jamie continues to battle his demons, Cahir's meal of the day, and a spooky journey to Dracula's Castle.


Thursday, 5 March 2009

World Before Wireless Gigs


In a where-the-hell-does-he-find-the-time scenario, STA documentary maker Aaron and his band World Before Wireless have a couple of London gigs coming up over the next few days where they'll be playing material from their nearly-finished mini-album.

06/03/09:
Up All Night Music presents
World Before Wireless + Shiva + Claire Brem Wilson + Zurich + The Royals
The Miller, 96 Snowsfields Road, SE1 3SS, London Bridge
Doors: 7:30pm (wbw @ 9:20pm)
£5 with flyer / £6 without flyer

10/03/09:
Duel In The Deep presents
World Before Wireless + Death of the Elephant + The Drowners + Fleet
Catch, 22 Kingsland Road, Shoreditch, London, E1
Doors: 8:00pm (WBW first on)
£4

For more info head to www.worldbeforewireless.com

Wednesday, 4 March 2009

Fighting With Wire UK Tour Day 11

In which FWW make the short journey up the coast to play a gig in a shop window, where we hear a cautionary tale of rock & roll excess, Graham has a moan and Wee Snorzie makes a comeback!

Tuesday, 3 March 2009

We are Godzilla, You Are Japan


The long-awaited release of ASIWYFA's eponymous long-player is fast approaching here in the UK & Ireland. In fact, we'll be taking pre-release orders - ahead of the album's release date on Monday 13th April - before the end of this week. Keep your eyes peeled for that announcement!

For our lucky friends in Japan however, the wait is finally over, as the record was released there this week. Check out some of the awesome photos - We predict that it is now a matter of when rather than if ASIWYFA head towards the rising sun to lay waste to the Far East!





Many thanks to Graham Pavey from the band's Japanese label for the photos!

Seafood DVD - Clips Now Online

Featuring the Cahir O'Doherty show when he played bass for Seafood on what was to be their last ever European tour - there are some clips now available from the posthumous DVD.

Part One
Part Two
Part Three

The pages include some details to buy from Basik Products directly - we hope to get some stock into the STA store at some point.

Definitely think that Cahir has chosen the wrong career.

Monday, 2 March 2009

Public Service Blogcast Episode 24




Michael Roe of Irish organisation The Richter Collective was very kind to mike-up for a fantastic blogcast takeover showcasing some of the fine artists on their roster.

The Richter Collective has its roots steeped in Irish DIY music and they don’t intend to change. It was set up by friends, Michael Roe and Barry Lennon. Barry has been releasing music and running gigs in Ireland for over seven years, starting with the release of a 7” for Irish punk band, Stress, funded by a part time job in a shop, and was a member of the Porco Dio Collective from April 2006 until October 2007 who hosted a range of touring and Irish bands including An Albatross, The Can Kickers, Pine Hill Haints and more. During this period Barry met Michael (who was playing with Terrordactyl at the time). Barry is currently is working with Dublin Community Television and is the booking agent for The Lower Deck in Portobello.

Michael has been playing in various Irish bands for over nine years and set up Popular Records, a non profit label which released bands from Ireland, the UK and Mainland Europe, spreading its profile on a word-of-mouth basis and organizing tours for bands on a non profit basis (including Marvins Revolt, Papier Tigre and Blakfish who can all be heard on this episode).

Public Service Blogcast Episode 24
42 minutes 13 seconds
Recorded 15/02/09

Tracklisting
02.07 Marvins Revolt - Deliberate Deeds (from Killec album - The Richter Collective)
05.50 Worrier - You've Let Down Your Hair
11.30 Blakfish - Jeremy Kyle Is A Marked Man (from See You In Another City mini-album - The Richter Collective)
15.43 Ebu Gogo - Neo Uranium Mattress (from Worlds album - Intergers Only)
19.22 Gavin Castleton - Coffeelocks (from Home album - Five One Inc. Records)
24.51 Enemies - Nag Champa (from Alpha Waves EP - The Richter Collective)
32.16 Papier Tigre - Restless Empire (from The Beginning And End Of Now album - Collectif Effervescence)
38.57 Channels - The Licensee (from Waiting For The Next End Of The World album - Dischord)

If you have any suggesstions for future blogcast takeovers or want to get a track played on a regular show, get in touch - email blogcast@smalltownamerica.co.uk

Nouvelle presse au sujet des Calories

Calories chime in with some recent press goings-on -

"This is a preview of of an interview we did for Spiel

PAGE 1
PAGE 2

It was conducted by Kristian and Patrick, two charming young men who are both classicly trained musicians and closet hard rockers; this will be the first edition of Spiel so get involved, they're looking for contributions of any kind artists/writers/photographers/bands etc etc. Kristian tells me there are a few more pages to be added.

Physical copies will be in Swordfish Records, Urban Outfitters, HMV and venues around Birmingham. If you don't live in Birmingham I'm sure if you ask them nicely enough they'll send you a scan/copy.

Merci to Vanessa (Perfume-Vee) for pointing out this article from France at Sound Of Violence; I had to translate it with Babelfish if anyone fancies translating it more accurately we'd be forever in your debt.

I've also done a recipe for the Artrocker blog but no news yet as to when that'll see the light of day.

Love and respect.
Pdog aka Scotch Dixon and all the Kals Krew"

As a zine hack in a previous life, Spiel looks very impressive - please take a look at what the lads there are doing. And hello to Fab and the crew at SoV who are long time friends of STA from way back in the early PSB days.