From The Department of All Things Caitlin Rose and Holy Fucking Shit, Nashville’s favorite neo-country indie darling just got a gig to kill for — opening up for tireless mutton-chop champion and noted Canadian Neil Young (Crazy Horse included!) at London’s Hyde Park on July 12 as part of the imaginatively titled British Summer Time festival.
As you can see from the flier above, Rose appears alongside lovably mopey lit-rockers The National, fellow Southerners Phosphorescent, British indie-pop troubadour Todd Odell and equally limey up-and-coming indie funksters Flyte (who sound sort of like a modern-day Style Council and who are presumably not named after this local establishment) on the rock-solid bill. “Many more acts” are still to be announced for the four-stage festival.
In 2010, West Coasters Local Natives rolled through Nashville (The Basement) in support of their debut Gorilla Manor, and I called the band "blog darlings" who make "Afrobeat-fetishizing, harmony-rich, mildly folky indie-rock that Grizzly Bear, Yeasayer and Animal Collective fans will likely find most palatable." Last year, they came through town again (Marathon Music Works) in support of their sophomore release Hummingbird, which contributor Stephen "Goose" Trageser said "retains the complex but dance-friendly rhythms that marked their 2010 debut Gorilla Manor, as well as the big vocal harmonies that earned them justifiable comparisons to Fleet Foxes." Who's dying to know what we'll say about them next time they come through?! Well, you'll have to wait about four-and-a-half months.
Local Natives — continuing that trend of graduating to higher- and higher-capacity venues each time they come to town — have just announced that they'll play the 2,362-seat Mother Church of Country Music on April 30. Tickets — which will run you $29.50 plus service charges — go on sale right here Friday, Dec. 13, at 10 a.m. Watch a video of Local Natives none-too-subtly nodding to one of their primary influences after the jump.
Charles “Classic” Williams is back with a new single, the first look into his upcoming project. “The Fall,” along with its accompanying video, shows why the Nashville eccentric is one of the more original characters in the local hip-hop scene. Classic oscillates between rapping and singing as he croons a hook that begins to get more catchy with each repetition.
If you thought the cold, wet weather coupled with Sunday night’s show being rescheduled (for a second time) might dampen the enthusiasm for Animal Collective’s set, The Spin is happy to report that you’d be wrong. Local AC fans, who have waited literally all year for this show, were out in full force with broad grins and all manner of colorful garb. For their part, the quartet repaid the crowd’s patience in full with a sound-and-light spectacle that felt more like a religious ceremony than a concert. Among a generation of indie fans accustomed to shows in basements and tiny clubs, a concert at the 1,500-capacity Marathon Music Works is the equivalent of an arena date; with over a decade of experience brought to bear, few were surprised when the group nailed it.
The Spin showed up at local bike shop Halcyon’s fifth birthday party Saturday evening about an hour before the bands were scheduled to go on. We arrived to low-key vibes and a couple of beers on tap, courtesy of The Filling Station, which was more than enough to occupy the groups of two or three that were scattered throughout the shop. But by the time first act Super Shaker started setting up, a considerable crowd had arrived, spilling outside of Halcyon’s front and back doors and into the parking lot.
Eccentricity is the name of the game for Blanche Blanche Blanche. The Vermont duo’s catalog is piled with tapes and records that take a synth-pop approach to whatever other styles suit their fancy at the time — lounge, krautrock, New Wave, bubblegum pop — all of it sifted through a lo-fi, psychedelic, retro-futuristic filter. Calling BBB’s music “intimate” feels trite, but there really isn’t a better descriptor. Most of the songs sound like they were recorded in a closet, and you can feel the constraints of their equipment in every track. But like a lot of twee-leaning bands, that’s all part of the charm, and those self-imposed limitations give color and character to something that might otherwise sound pretty schizophrenic. On the opposite end of the spectrum, Guerilla Toss serves up discordant blasts of noise-rock that are just as tasty. Local math-rock duo Gnarwhal and the difficult-to-Google Casting Couch open.
"There's a really big void in the digital coverage of country music as far as giving it the serious attention it deserves," RollingStone.com director (and son of RS honcho and co-founder Jann Wenner) Gus Wenner recently told Ad Age. Wenner the younger goes on to tell Ad Age that RS Country's Nashville office will employ "10 to 15 editorial staffers." Rolling Stone Country will not produce a print publication, though RS proper is planning "a country-themed print issue" to coincide with the site's launch.
Rolling Stone will reportedly spend more than $1 million on the new site in 2014. "Certain categories of advertisers love country music because it's a very sponsor-friendly genre," RS publisher Chris McLoughlin told Ad Age. "The performers are all super likable, they tend to be good people who value their fans and treat their fans well."
Rolling Stone's announcement comes on the heels of their "50 Best Albums of 2013" list, which included releases from country stars Keith Urban, Kacey Musgraves and Ashley Monroe.
“I feel like it’s the more the merrier,” Scene editor-in-chief Jim Ridley told Poynter. “For many years, Nashville’s felt severely undercovered by the national media. ... It’s refreshing to see a national publication say this deserves more than just a stopover, this requires a bureau.”
I concur with my boss.
It looks like Christmas has come early for Middle Tennessee pop-punk fans: Vans Warped Tour, the preeminent touring punk/ska/hardcore/whatevs festival (and one of the few touring music festivals to keep chugging along), is coming to Nashville on July 29, 2014. Festival organizers announced the stop on Twitter last night, marking the first time Warped Tour will route through Nashville since their 2006 stop at Starwood Amphitheater.
There are tons of questions to ask: Why come back to Nashville? What’s the ticket situation? How alienated will we feel when we don’t recognize any of the bands performing? (Here's a hint: extremely.)
But, the main question here is the most obvious one: Where exactly are they going to stick this thing? As mentioned in this week’s Year in Music cover story, Nashville is stepping up its outdoor venue game ever so slightly, but Warped Tour is a massive undertaking. At last year’s festival, a total of nine stages were in regular use. Nine! And that’s not factoring in skateboard ramps, seas of merch booths and the other customary Warped Tour sprawl. The Lawn at Riverfront is big — but is it big enough to hold a festival on this scale?
More details will assuredly be released over the coming weeks and months. And while I’m sure the thought running through most of your heads is along the lines of “LOL, Warped Tour,” keep in mind that your little brother is probably stoked beyond measure for this development. For all its faults, Warped Tour succeeds in providing an affordable music festival experience geared toward the babies. And considering Nashville's dearth of all-ages music venues, that's a welcome sight.
Update: The Warped Tour has announced that the Nashville date will be held at the Tennessee State Fairgrounds.
Anyway, here and now, this weekend's a little bit slow, but there's some action if you poke around. Tonight you're looking at: Hoots and Hellmouth at The High Watt; Scale Model with The Swiflets at The End; Machines Are People Too at 12th & Porter; Sparkle City doing a thing at Foobar; and more. Tomorrow you're looking at: Los Colognes and friends at The Basement; Chris Crofton and the Alcohol Stuntband early at Grimey's and late at The Stone Fox; a Tom Waits tribute at The 5 Spot; and more. Have a look at the rest — compiled by music listings editor Adam "Stuck in the '60s" Gold — after the jump. Let us know what we missed, and have yourselves a safe but fun weekend.
Even without its staggering Paramount compilation produced in tandem with the Revenant label, Third Man Records would be having a stellar year for reissues. Back in May, the Cream passed along news about Third Man's series of 45s devoted to classics from the Sun Records catalog — starting with sides by Johnny Cash and Rufus Thomas, as well as one of the most unearthly of all pop singles, The Prisonaires' "Just Walkin' in the Rain."
Third Man has just released the second set of three Sun singles to be pressed by Nashville's United Record Pressing, and collectors are likely to find them just as sweet. Jerry Lee Lewis' "Great Balls of Fire" b/w "You Win Again" is as essential as rockabilly gets, and Roy Orbison's "Rock House" b/w "You're My Baby" reminds that his rockers were just as potent as his spectral later ballads. But the discovery among the three for casual fans will be D.A. Hunt's eerie rarity "Lonesome Old Jail" b/w "Greyhound Blues." From the Third Man site:
Daniel Augusta Hunt, better known as Junior Hunt, was born in Munford, AL in 1929. On or around March 11th, 1953, Hunt recorded these two songs at 706 Union Avenue in Memphis and they were released in June of that year. For over 50 years, these songs were believed to only exist in 78 rpm form, until a copy pressed as a 45 rpm 7” single turned up in Minnesota. This only known copy was sold on eBay in 2010 for $10,323. This marks the first legitimate release of Hunt's material on a 7" record, and both songs are outstanding examples of the heartbreaking, desolate nature of the solo bluesman accompanying himself on guitar and borrow heavily from the template set by Lightnin' Hopkins. Hunt was arrested in Memphis in 1958 for stealing a saxophone and died in May 1962 in Phoenix, AZ.
Read more about the series here.
Figure when the tour is played out and the line up blows. TN fairgrounds? weird…
There was a man named Jimmie Rodgers once.
PS#2: Gold, meant to ask, "Are you up to the task?" It does keep getting…
PS: I have already found another early influence on rock music. Folk music recording artist…
Well, it is about time... check out www.rockhall.com/inductees/byyear and you will find Hank Williams SR…