Friday, August 31, 2007

BRAND NEW MUSIC - Slip into another state of mind with PRINTS!

The sweet, sweeping sound of eclectic progression, the power of voice and the mixing that brings it all home - - Welcome to the world of PRINTS. This is a brand new endeavor for the indie-rock duo of Kenseth Thibideau and Zac Nelson. Prints is so damn new that their first song (on their self-entitled eight-track album) won't be appearing in record stores until October. I urge you to launch yourself out there and pick it up! Kenseth Thibideau has hit gold here. He also just happens to be in one of the most criminally underrated bands going in San Diego's Sleeping People. Zac Nelson might be known to some indie rock radio aficionados from his work with Who's Your Favorite Son God.

The Freshest New Music: PRINTS

Nelson and Thibideau - You can get lost in these tracks!
The duo's majestic self-titled release will be in stores in October

Probably the most fitting way to describe Prints is that the music isn't at all what it seems at any given time. Layered and largely without flaw, these songs grow on you with each listening. (I have been listening to this album for about four hours today!!) The beats climb and fall and before you know it, the album has started playing over again. Time stands still and you are still in the same room - just in a different place. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED.

You Heard it Here First:
Prints - Easy Magic

Prints is an Artist on Temporary Residence

Thursday, August 30, 2007

With the Passing of Guiding Spirit Hilly Kristal, CBGB is Now Really Closed

The story of punk rock in America would have inevitably happened without CBGBs in New York, but it certainly wouldn't have been the same. Giving credit where credit is due: Punk Rock influenced Mainstream Music and the entire world. CBGB owner Hilly Kristal played a role in it all. CBGB proprietor Hilly Kristal, music supporter and keeper of the punk rock flame for three decades, dead this week at 75. This is a tribute..

CBGBs - opened for business in 1973

Hilly Kristal's Punk Rock Paradise

Hilly Kristal R.I.P.

CBGB is closed - for now, the music is still.

A tribute at the Rock Sellout Music Blog

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

The Black and White Years need Your Help to Play Austin City Limits! - My interview with this HOT new band.

Indie Rock fans unite! Vote with your free minds, your impeccable sense of taste and your keyboards! One of the best and under-appreciated bands in America could use your support to play under the bright lights of an Austin City Limits stage and there is very little time to help them out:

Regular readers know that I interviewed Austin's incredible Black and White Years back in March- just after they knocked people's socks off at this year's South by Southwest Music Festival. Well, now they need your help to take the stage again in Austin! The band accidentally forgot to contact me for help with the contest (sponsored by, Paste Magazine and DELL computers) until yesterday afternoon. That leaves us just one day to help get this most deserving band from #11 - #5.... the spot they need to be in to move on. There are enough of you regular readers to make this happen. Please Vote.


Don't know the band? No worries, here's my interview with Scott Butler and Landon Thompson from this Spring. Read the words, soak up the music and vote for this tremendous new band!!!


DATELINE: AUSTIN, TX - March 2007:

Already sporting a wicked new sound, The Black and White Years closed the iconic South-by-Southwest Music Festival with new fans, a couple of album offers and a dedicated producer - Jerry Harrison of the Talking Heads! It was one hell of a month and if everybody took something away from the experience - this band was the biggest winner!

Here is my interview with the Austin band as they talk the "Great Leap Forward" towards a new record deal and into the unknown!

Landon Thompson and The Black and White Years have cause for celebration.
photograph by Travis Glodt

The story couldn't be more dramatic, or perhaps, more fitting... Weeks before the Austin music festival was to take place, I got exposed to The Black and White Years and was won over by their dynamic sound. They are intelligent, raw and they groove. They use the best part of the indie-rock sound collective consciousness (channeling elements of the Talking Heads, Beck, Of Montreal and David Bowie into their songs) while still managing to sound new and very fresh. The blend of unique sound and high promise landed them a spot in South-by-Southwest.

What would happen next was not a good thing. The band returned home one day to find all their gear and their computers stolen. Everything gone during a break-in which would have destroyed a lesser band.

With the help of the fans, friends and family the band got back on their feet just in time for the festival - and that's where our story picks up. Short story long - The Black and White Years kicked ass in Austin and won over a whole lot of hearts.

The Band (from left)

John Aldridge: Guitar, Piano, Vocals
Landon Thompson: Lead Guitar
Scott Butler: Bass and Brass

My interview with Scott Butler and Landon Thompson of the Black and White Years

Ryan (RSL): Hey guys! Tell me what's it's been like recently for the band with the South-by-Southwest Music Festival and all of the attention you have been getting.

Scott Butler (Scott): Hi. Um. SxSW was as exhausting and mind-boggling as everyone said it would be. And as for the attention we've been getting, it's the kind of attention where smart people in quiet places really like your music.

Landon Thompson (Landon): We played five shows in three days for audiences ranging from 15 to 150 people. The right people, luckily, got our demo and saw some potential.

Scott: And the responses we've gotten from everyone at gigs and in general has been as positive and supportive as we ever could have hoped! Right now, we feel like the pretty girls at the prom. (laughing) Or the ugly girls who were really funny and got nominated prom queen.

RSL: Well, you deserve the attention. Now, the big surprise - the most pleasant unveiling here is that Jerry Harrison of The Talking Heads will be producing your next album. Congratulations!

Ryan's note: In addition to being a great musician in a band of historical importance, Harrison has gone on to become a well-respected producer. He has worked with and produced songs for the Violent Femmes, Crash Test Dummies, Live, No Doubt and the Fine Young Cannibals. The fact that Harrison would agree to produce an album for The Black and White Years is cause for celebration and testament to just how good the band really is.

RSL: Tell us how this came to be! Is Jerry a fan of the band?

Landon: Thanks! Jerry Harrison heard our demo through Randy Miller, our manager - who worked with Jerry when Jerry produced Live. He liked the music and wanted to produce. He's a fan and he's making our album for an indie label, Brando Records."

Come Together: (from left) The Talking Head's Jerry Harrison, Landon Thompson, Black and White Years manager Randy Miller, Scott Butler and John Aldridge

Scott: After several weeks of troubled sleep, SxSW provided the opportunity for Jerry to see us live. Jerry saw us at our showcase at Opal Divine's and we met after. Over the next couple of days, he hung out at the band-house and heard all our material. Now, we're in discussions about dates, times, how's, who's, where's, etc..

RSL: We spoke earlier and I know you have some material basically "ready to go" for this forthcoming album. How far away are you, creatively, from getting this thing done?

Scott Butler

Scott: Without a drummer, we're forced to program all our drums and keyboards into our Roland Juno-G, so that we can play live. What that basically means is that the songs live are essentially the way they will be recorded, with the exception of vocals, guitars, and bass.

Landon: Of course, we're also going to work with a live drummer on the record……..The name Steve Ferrone is being tossed around.

RSL: Wow, Steve Ferrone would be huge. For those readers who haven't been in Austin during the Festival Season, can you tell us what it was like this year? What were your impressions being a featured entertainer?

Landon: We feel blessed that the music community in Austin has been so supportive and has so quickly responded to our music. It's amazing how quickly a band can move up from pizza parlors to great venues here in Austin, despite the large numbers of bands vying for the same slots.

Scott: And even in the small venues – the pizza parlors, etc. you can get a huge response from the crowd. Austin feels like a community more than some large cities. At our level, it's a real trip when someone recognizes you by name at a bowling alley.

RSL: There is a fun-paced, playful element to some of your songs. What would you like people to take away from one of your shows?

Scott: By the end of the show, I want the audience to be covered in sweat, but not their sweat. Our sweat!

Landon: Imagine old-school Jane Fonda in her tight yellow spandex and leg-warmers really working it out, getting into it, killing the calories. . . (laughs)

RSL: Is there anybody in the band who is simply fixated on a musical hero? For a long time - even when I was younger, I listened to a lot of Bob Dylan, for instance.

Landon: None of us are fixated on any single musical hero anymore. Scott was obsessed with Billy Corgan from The Smashing Pumpkins. John was fixated with experimental accordion and wacky shit from Finland.

Scott: Landon was all about Mr. Bungle and Tool and classical guitar. Now, we're all a bunch of dorks who listen to music from Brazil and Disney.

Landon: And, of course, 80's music.

RSL: Can you select one of your songs and tell us how it came about? What was the creative process like?

Scott: The song "Waking/Dream" is interesting because it originally was a Brian Setzer Orchestra-type song. Which I disliked, though I wrote it. We played the song for months and months in this awful swing-style. However, after we re-started the band with a keyboard and a new name, it was only appropriate to re-invent "Waking/Dream." Thank goodness we did.

RSL: Are there any contemporary bands influencing you these days?

Landon: Some contemporary influences for us are Of Montreal, Arcade Fire, Clap Your Hands, Say Yeah!, Alfie, The Bees (UK), I Am Kloot, Beck (of course) and some others. Scott just listens to ass-loads of Brazilian music and Stephen Sondheim. Baffling. (laughs)

RSL: What is something that people should know about The Black and White Years?

Scott: We are pretty nice guys. We play soccer in the backyard. We sometimes get hurt doing that very thing. We came up with a list of band names that was several pages long, single spaced. And we hated them all for different reasons. Then, we got fed up and starting doing the encyclopedia thing. The first pages to which I turned were glossies of black and white era stars. The heading of the page was The Black and White Years. I think that's how it happened. Or I might have just said it. John hated it at first, but Landon and I were so fed up with the whole finding-a-band-name thing that we convinced him.

Landon: Playing music is pretty awesome.

The Black and White Years on Myspace


This week's hot release comes from NY post-punk rockers Liars whose fans have seen the band evolve over the last few years to produce some remarkable quality experimental indie music. The new album is demonstration of the band's versatility and talent. It's hard to imagine what the band sounds like live! Get out to a show: reviews of the Liars gigs have been so positive in the past that I will be there when the band plays Boston on Oct. 13th. To support this new record, LIARS are on a smokin' tourwith none other than Interpol. That's one hot ticket!

The Self-Entitled Album: On sale now

One Hot Release!

* Mon 10 Albany, NY - Palace Theatre
* Wed 12 Boston, MA - Agganis Arena
* Fri 14 New York, NY - Madison Square Garden
* Sat 15 Philadelphia, PA - Tower Theatre
* Sun 16 Raleigh, NC - Disco Rodeo
* Tue 18 Orlando, FL - Hard Rock Live
* Wed 19 Miami, FL - BankUnited Center
* Fri 21 Atlanta, GA - Tabernacle
* Sat 22 Nashville, TN - Ryman Auditorium
* Sun 23 New Orleans, LA - Sugar Mill
* Tue 25 Houston, TX - Verizon Wireless Theatre
* Wed 26 Austin, TX - Stubb's Bar-B-Q
* Thu 27 Dallas, TX - Palladium

* Wed 10 Kansas City, KS - Uptown
* Fri 12 Minneapolis, MN - State Theatre
* Sun 14 Denver, CO - Fillmore
* Mon 15 Salt Lake City, UT - McKay Center
* Tue 16 Boise, ID - Big Easy
* Thu 18 Seattle, WA - WaMu Theater
* Fri 19 Portland, OR - Memorial Coliseum
* Sat 20 San Francisco, CA - Bill Graham Civic Auditorium
* Tue 23 Los Angeles, CA - The Forum


Web / Myspace

Monday, August 27, 2007

I'm Not There - The Greatest Bob Dylan Cult Film Ever Made

An RSL Special:

Our story focuses squarely on the diminutive frame of Bob Dylan. It's a story about a rogue, a hero, a fiend, and a kid on the rise. The legend describes a promising star turned scapegoat, a lover and a sinner. The folk fable tells of a cowboy, our reluctant savior, a guitar player, a shadow of his former self, the revitalized immortal, a college dropout. Dylan is a god, a man, a song-writer in solitude. Hell, he's been considered all of these at one time or another. The Dylan Story, importantly, isn't just about Bob - it's about all of us; our perceptions of the man and his legend. You see, even if you don't like the man or his music - you surely must understand that we all live in the Bob Dylan Age.

Dylan with Electric Guitar

An important and dashingly creative new film, "I'm Not There," looks at Bob's long and winding career, the impact of his music, the legendary interviews with their barbed quips, the tall tales - the mythical falsehoods! "I'm Not There" is the Bob Dylan cult film for three generations. Dylan's shifting character will be played by SIX different actors - each capturing an aspect of the legend during different stages of his career. Can you say "genius?" The Dylan players: Heath Ledger, Christian Bale, Richard Gere, Cate Blanchett(!), Marcus Carl Franklin and Ben Whishaw.

The Movie One-Sheet

I'm Not There, set to be released in November in the United States, doesn't dare claim to present the whole truth. In fact, the film pokes fun at the larger-than-life version of the stories surrounding Dylan... What this film looks to have then isn't honesty, or answers - but charisma and character. Those are qualities Dylan has in spades.

Here is the first official movie trailer and a second sequence starring Academy Award winner Cate Blanchett as the wispy-haired songwriter circa 1964/1965. Blanchett's Dylan meets poet Alan Ginsburg in a presentation that is so wild and improbable that it has to be true!


Scene of A Masterpiece!

Recent Bob Dylan News

Artist of the Week - The Dangerously Good Sound of Foreign Islands

To be perfectly honest - I'm not sure if I bought Mark Ryan, frontman of Brooklyn, NY's Foreign Islands the first drink - or he got one for me. Either way, we had a great time knocking back a few and laughing it up after the band's set (more than a week ago at the Middle East in Cambridge.) I had heard excellent reviews about the band from their SxSW performances, but had never had the chance to see them take the stage before. The band rocked out and I was seriously impressed.

As it turns out, Mark and I had a lot in common. We actually jawed on for some time about popular musicians and bands we don't like, which is pretty funny because I think the fair analysis is that we're both pretty positive people. Mark gave me a copy of "Restart Now" - their new release to listen to -- it's been getting heavy rotation ever since. It's a powerful, beat driven rock affair - great for your summer activities, whatever they might be. As for the band, catch them on tour real soon. I predict big things!

Foreign Islands - Dangerously Good

Singer Mark Ryan (at left) is one fun dude.
Foreign Islands brings the noise!

Buy the Restart Now EP:

Web / Myspace

Saturday, August 25, 2007

Neil Young @ the BBC - 1971

There are great musicians, great shows and great recording - and then there's Neil Young - an amazing set! Rarely do all of these elements come together and the material is still not available to enjoy. With Neil Young's recent release of the Massey Hall 1971 show there is a lot of love out there these days for his music - and especially tracks from this era. Presenting: Neil Young Live at the BBC 1971...


Image: Neil Young by Graham Nash

It's damn hard to believe that this show (a collector's treasure for three decades now) has never been released. It was recorded at the old Sheperds Bush Empire Theatre (sold to the BBC in 1953 with some conversions for television broadcasts for years.) This session is crisp and clean - showcasing classic Neil Young during an important period in his professional development. The song selections are hard to beat!

Important: I love music and support the efforts of musicians. Consequently, is not my policy to share live shows that are available commercially to avoid inflicting damages. If anyone is aware of any reason why this material should not be shared, please contact me.

DID YOU KNOW? - In 1992, the BBC sold the site (it was called the Shepherds Bush BBC Theatre when Neil Young played there in 1971) and it's name was reverted back to the Shepherds Bush Empire. The theatre, now operated by the Academy Music Group, maintains it's strong musical heritage - still hosting live shows today.

Friday, August 24, 2007

Broken Social Scene's Kevin Drew - Free Show on Tuesday

Broken Social Scene is letting it's artists take turns under the bright lights this year. Right now it's Kevin Drew's turn. And you can see him play for free for a Myspace Secret Show (everyone knew there was going to be one - just the debate over who....) at T.T. the Bears in Central Square Cambridge next Tuesday! Yep, Absolutely Free!

TUESDAY 8-28-07



Tuesday, August 28, 2007. FREE! / All Ages! Doors @ 7:00 PM
At TT The Bears (10 Brookline St. Cambridge, MA 02139-4152 - 617-492-BEAR)


  • Writsbands will be available for pick up after 2PM (NO LINE UPS PRIOR TO 1PM) Tuesday at TT The Bears.
  • Entry is limited so get there early to ensure success!
  • Absolutely no cameras and no camera phones will be allowed in the show
  • THIS IS FIRST COME FIRST SERVED, so get there early and stay in line.
The following is sarcasm. Please take it as such.
By the way - thanks Myspace and T.T.s for holding all the way off to 2 p.m.
I won't be going be there because I have one of those J-O-B-S.
At least some of you regular readers wills make it.

The Decemberists Do it Both Ways - The Long and The Short of It

Anyone slightly familiar with the Decemberists' music has probably made the comment at one time or another that the band has a penchant for both the short, talent-laden but accessible short songs but hasn't yet lost the drive to complete those long, progressive rock grinders.... They appear side-by-side on each of the albums. This juxtaposition of the band's own creativity has never been made so clear as it was recently with the commercial success of the Crane Wife album, and specifically of the track "O Valencia!" As a result, the Decemberists fans will have options this year of how to take their music....

The Decemberists' Great Experiment -
Two Tours in One: "The Long and The Short of It"

Two Shows in each City - You Have Got To Love It America!

The Decemberists were drafting out their next tour and it came to them (like a lightning bolt or a diamond bullet in the mind's eye) - we can be everything to everyone! - The Short of It and the Long of It tour concept was born. As Filter put it yesterday, do you "love The Decemberists but hate the trendy MTV fans who only come to hear O Valencia? Or how about those chin-strokers slowly tapping their feet to the proggy epics like"The Tain"? Well, The Decemberists are getting ready to split their audiences in two with a series of dual shows in each town, with a tour titled "The Long and Short of It." "Long" evenings will focus on the band's epic, progressive compositions. "Short" nights (while no shorter in set length) will highlight their more succinct, pop-leaning material.


28 Chicago, IL - Vic Theater *
29 Chicago, IL - Vic Theater #

01 New York, NY - Terminal 5 *
02 New York, NY - Terminal 5 #
03 Boston, MA - Orpheum *
04 Boston, MA - Orpheum #
06 Winston-Salem, NC - Millennium Center *
07 Winston-Salem, NC - Millennium Center #
09 Washington, DC - 9:30 Club *
10 Washington, DC - 9:30 Club #
11 Washington, DC - 9:30 Club *
12 Washington, DC - 9:30 Club #
15 Columbus, OH - Lifestyle Communities Pavilion *
16 Columbus, OH - Lifestyle Communities Pavilion #
18 Milwaukee, WI - Riverside Theater *
19 Milwaukee, WI - Riverside Theater #
23 San Francisco, CA - The Fillmore *
24 San Francisco, CA - The Fillmore #
25 San Francisco, CA - The Fillmore *
26 San Francisco, CA - The Fillmore #
29 Los Angeles, CA - The Wiltern *
30 Los Angeles, CA - The Wiltern #

01 San Diego, CA - Spreckels Theatre *
02 San Diego, CA - Spreckels Theatre #
05 Portland, OR - Crystal Ballroom *
06 Portland, OR - Crystal Ballroom #
07 Portland, OR - Crystal Ballroom
08 Seattle, WA - Moore Theatre *
09 Seattle, WA - Moore Theatre #

* = "Long of It"
# = "Short of It"

Cold War Kids return to Your Town - A new Tour

A tip of the hat today to Boston's own Exitfare for keeping me in the know on the Cold War Kids new tour as headliners. The band is also taking a swing through the states in support of the White Stripes! (Now that's a bill.) Definitely better then some of the CWK line-ups I was hearing about before. I am glad our friends are doing well and playing in good company!

Cold War Kids - Rubidoux
(let this one play even after the music ends for a special treat!)

The boys from Whittier, California won't be heading into Boston until December 4 - but they will be playing the Roxy and that sounds like good times! For all the CWK dates, stop over and see Dany over at Exitfare, he's got all that.

Previous Posts of Interest to Readers:
"Hello from Cold War Kids" - March 2007

CWK Web / Myspace

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Animal Collective: the Peacebone Video - The new album in just days

It's an wild world out there! No one knows that better than New York/Baltimore experimental folk/ progressive indie rockers Animal Collective. Set to finally release their powerful new album; "Strawberry Jam," on September 10. (Domino Records) The first video from the album was just released. "Peacebone"is a track Animal Collective has been playing live for more than two years and have honed to a polish - highly recommended stuff.

"Peacebone" Video Premiere this Week!

From the Strawberry Jam album (September 2007)

Download the song!
Animal Collective - Peacebone
(Track One from the new album)

DID YOU KNOW? - The "Strawberry Jam" album has been completely leaked on the internet in peer-to-peer file sharing following torrent rips being placed on the net by music "journalists" earlier this year. Animal Collective has not spoken out critically against the leaks, just stating (repeatedly) that the album should be listened to as a whole, straight through.

The band has some time off until
Wednesday, September 5 at the Avalon Boston
Tickets: ALL AGES - Only $16 (plus fees)

Wednesday, Sept 5 - Animal Collective at the Avalon!
Animal Collective kicks off their new tour in Boston

Animal Collective Lynx:
Web / Myspace

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

It's a Bob Dylan kind of Day - Dylan's new album, Dylan on the Streets - Will tour with Elvis Costello!

On October 1st, Bob Dylan will re-release more songs in a new "Greatest Collection" - with a special remix of "Most Likely You Go Your Way (And I'll Go Mine)" by British producer and DJ Mark Ronson. This is still new, so keep your ear to the ground! If you want a sneak peak, listen here.

This is a 3CD box set with additional artwork and collector's material. We want new material, Bob. Stay tuned. I hope to have the skinny on this soon. Maybe new material will be released with the new Bob Dylan cult film being released this fall..... Check it out!

Mr Dylan embarks on a brief tour with none other than Elvis Costello (appearing solo for the first time in years!) This is great news! Dylan and Costello appear with Amos Lee at the DCU Center in Worcester MA on October 2. I have seen Uncle Bob somewhere between 16 and 18 times. I think I will actually go to this one - my first in more than six years. The tickets for this show (the only Boston-area performance) will go on sale to the public in just three days (ticketmaster 8/25/07 at 10 a.m.) Use the password "Chelsea" to upgrade your selections!

Guess who it was that Bob Dylan chatted on about on XM Radio? It was the music of The Streets and the talented Mike Skinner. Dylan - who discusses music the world over (both past & present) on his radio program - never ceases to amaze me. Good show sir!

Dylan: A Life of Music
Click the image to hear a cool bio!

Click the image to hear a cool bio!

XM Radio: Theme Time Radio Hour

Keepin' you honest and on your toes! - Ryan

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Today's Cover Story - Of Montreal Does It Right

Of Montreal is a Athens, GA band and one with growing prominence on the national scene. Kevin Barnes and company truly belongs to the pantheon of great American independent rock bands now. A quick rundown of the band's utterly bizarre album and song titles would tend to make one think that Kevin and the band don't want you to follow them too closely. And what about those quirky stage performances (some involving Barnes in bizarre dresses and a few - with nothing at all?!) The makings of legend, as I see it. I caught the band in Boston last time through and am happy to report that Of Montreal will appear again in this fair city on October 12, over at the Roxy... (Great venue for this band!) A live performance ensures you will have stories to tell and you might just see a great cover song. Kevin Barnes don't just cover anyones's music or just any old song.... Check these out!

Of Montreal's Music Genius - Kevin Barnes

A Great Collection of Of Montreal cover songs!

Monday, August 20, 2007

My Interview on New Zealand Radio - 95bFM's Live Wire

Ahh.... my first radio interview. This aired and is available streaming on 95bFM - the best independent rock and new music station in all of New Zealand and Australia. Yep, seriously!! Now, please listen but be patient. I stammer a bit through the beginning, but I was nervous. My points are still good. More to come!

Ryan of the RSL by Eldorado Rampage

Now on to the interview. It was recorded over the phone with a 16-hour time difference. We spoke for much longer than we planned and only a portion was used. We actually spoke about a number of issues - Jose focused this time on the album leak aspect for this particular segment.I say "this time" because the record station already contacted me because management is interested in doing more segments with me.

The interview as it appears on the 95bFM Live Wire page.
(listen on the radio page, it's faster and cleaner!)

Article on the RSL Weblog

The Ryan's Smashing Life myspace page

Sunday, August 19, 2007

Guster Live in Boston - The Modstock Concert (2005)

In light of Guster's performance during this weekend's Download Festival at the Tweeter Performing Arts Center in Mansfield, I thought I would resurrect this live show for all you Guster fans! Enjoy, and please come again...

A Rare Performance...
Guster played Boston - May 5, 2005

In 2005, Guster played Boston College's "Modstock Concert." Something about the band: the three-man band met in 1992 while attending Tufts and played throughout the area for years. During this time they developed a huge following of college students and music enthusiasts. (Named the best live act at the Boston Music Awards in 1997 -- years before this recording!) It is for all of these reasons that no matter where the band lives and plays, there are a great many in Boston who consider the city and region to be Guster's home.

Guster was the headliner for
B.C.'s Modstock 2005.

Grab this show and listen to Guster play their "home turf" back in '05! You'll be capturing some old classics and some new favorites. There is a special early version of "Satellite."

This Heart's On Fire - Get Ready for the New Wolf Parade!

The new songs are sensational! Wolf Parade has done it again! The band with the many side projects played stunning seven-song set during Saturday's (8/18/07) Boston Download Festival - which actually took place at Mansfield's Tweeter Center. You would have no idea the band has been off working on side projects and taking some time off for writing. Tighter than ever, the band motored through four straight new songs. (Sorry, I don't have the titles for these yet. The third and fourth of these tracks were jaw-droppers!)

One of the Best: Wolf Parade

The Download Festival crowd was unbelievably patient with the lack of songs performed from "Apologies to the Queen Mary" - an album with 12 tracks (one better than the next!). It wasn't too hard being patient, as the new songs were so enjoyable. By the time that Wolf Parade fired up "Shine A Light," the mid-afternoon crowd was thoroughly worked up. The day was made when the band played a sensational version of "I'll Believe in Anything, You'll Believe in Anything." Just wonderful!

I really wanted to hear one more song I knew - "Modern World" or "You are a Runner, I am My Father's Son," but it was not to be. The band finished up with another new track from the forthcoming album. The band was comparing notes before they started to play. Spencer Krug shrugged from behind his keyboard and said, "Let's give it a shot." - It's possible this was the first time the band ever played the unidentified show publicly.

Setlist 8/18/07
Chinese way
Shine a Light
I'll Believe in Anything, You'll Believe in Anything
Crazy Horse

* with thanks!

Wolf Parade are fine tuning the songs a final time before recording the album. I cannot wait. From what I heard on Saturday, the band is better than ever and the new songs are magic! Check out the Wolf Parade fan blog where they recently heard eight new identified songs during a longer set. Stay tuned. You just know I'll be on top of this!

* While I think of it, I want to pass along my congratulations to Wolf Parade's Dan Broeckner and new wife Alexei Perry who were just wed. They pair play together in the incredible band The Handsome Furs. Congrats guys and good luck!

Saturday, August 18, 2007

The Download Festival - Tweeter Center, Mansfield MA

This summer's greatest assembly of musical talent here in New England appears on stage today at the Tweeter Center Performing Arts Center (formerly Great Woods) in Mansfield, MA. The Download Festival is a series of shows in the US and in the UK intended on getting the people out to hear new and exciting music. Highly Recommended.

Some Songs and a Tentative Schedule:

Yeah Yeah Yeahs by Artist Todd Slater

Yeah Yeah Yeahs - Down Boy

Ben Bridwell of BAND OF HORSES

Band of Horses - The Funeral

(everything here is tentative)

Noon - Gates
1:00 - Apollo Sunshine
1:50 - Bang Camaro
3:00 - Band of Horses
4:00 - Wolf Parade
5:15 - Neko Case
6:15 - The Yeah Yeah Yeahs
7:45 - Guster
9:15 - Modest Mouse

Friday, August 17, 2007

Three Hot Mashes (Sweet Tracks / Remixes)

Tonight's main event - A Friday night in the summer is just the right time for some hot mash-ups! Here's what you get:

Three Samples: FOUR STARS!!!!

Benzos Branches Out, Gets Good - Hits Boston!

Appearing in Boston tonight are Benzos - a highly recommended Brooklyn band with a deep, deep sound. I listened to their new album, "Branches" back-to-back a couple days ago and find myself getting lost between the notes. Here are songs like waves that can teach you to swim or sweep you away in the night! The four-piece band has a very interesting sound. At times they sound the better part dark soul with clear elements of hard rock, but undercutting it all is excellent use of keyboards, drums and bass (think "Radiohead-loss-of-your-mind" good) - rounding out the stagework.

BENZOS Plays the Middle East in Cambridge!

The Brooklyn Band with the big sound is Artist of the Day

This work makes me think about some of what the Deftones have done over the years - but to be honest, I like Christian Celaya and Brian Joyce's voices (Benzos) better than that of the Deftones' Chino Moreno! Generally speaking, there are other bands out there making the type of music that Benzos have produced on the "Branches" album - but just not as well. An unexpected treat and a highly recommended album!

Branches is the new album

Benzos plays the Middle East Upstairs tonight appearing with Foreign Islands and the Unstoppable Black Clouds. (This is a Great line-up.)

Benzos are on Stinky Records.
This is a brand new record this month!

Web / Myspace

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Ryan of the RSL on Radio in New Zealand?

One of your favorite music bloggers (ahem, I meant me!) will be speaking with 95bfm indie rock radio in Auckland, New Zealand this week! I was contacted and acquiesced to their polite request for a five to ten minutes interview! 95bfm represents Auckland University and points beyond on the radio dial! The station streams live audio on the internet (here.)

It's just a little ironic that I host a music mix series called blog radio - and now will be on the air talking about my favorite music.

I hope to expose the page to some new readers, share some ideas, discuss contemporary blogger and music industry issues and make some new contacts. I will let you all know when I have all the pertinents about when it will air sometime after the interview occurs!

Click for 95bFM Live Stream

The Scene in Boston:

"What 16-hour time difference?"

The Hook-Up
95bFM indie rock
web /
streaming audio

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Electronic Disco and Dance from Calvin Harris - NEW MUSIC!

Oh, Calvin Harris - you look so funny wearing your weird retro sunglasses, but you certainly made one hell of a record! I have this freaky music turned up so loud now, it's hard to write! Find out how one scrawny little dude is turning British clubs on their ear - look out North America, here comes the mild-mannered, but completely wild Calvin Harris! ...


(here - a picture even your grandmother would love!)

Calvin Harris is an exciting new musician from the UK performing a sweet fusion blend of Seventies disco funk and the best electronic beats from the 1980s and today.

We hear the beat on "Vegas" - a song from Calvin Harris' "I Created Disco" album (now available in the UK - September 4 in North America) and can't help but groove on. It's pretty addictive! "I've got my car, my ride, my wheels. I've got my drugs, and my stuff and my pills. I'm on way to Vegas...." It's the sound of Calvin Harris. The man is out of control, in a most unsuspecting way. Hit play and get ready for the latest and greatest club sound. My prediction is that we will all be talking about Calvin Harris for a long time.

Calvin Harris is
an Almost Gold artist

If you are reading this in the USA or Canada,
the album release date is Sept 4.

C.H. Web / Myspace

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Acoustically Speaking - Smooth Sounds from the Four Winds

Acoustically Speaking
A new music series celebrating artistry in pubs, studios and practice rooms.
I bring you the best acoustic music in the world - both past and present!
Birdmonster is one of the best independent rock bands coming out of southern California these days. That is definitely saying something when you consider the multitude of talent in the area. I caught them live this year on their tour with Michigan's Mason Proper, ( now that's a great line-up!) Here is Birdmonster with an acoustic version of "No Midnight."
Israel Kamakawiwo'ole (RIP June 26, 1997) was perhaps one of most accomplished and best known ukulele players in American history. "IZ" as he was most commonly known brought a huge level of notoriety to the instrument by fusing outside music elements (jazz, reggae and pop) into his Hawaiian heritage. Included today is Israel's most famous recording - his version of the classic, "Over the Rainbow."
Fionn Regan is a tremendous up and coming Irish performer who is taking the independent music world by storm. His new album, "The End of History" is receiving accolades all over the place and his performances on both side of the Atlantic are selling out. Find out what everyone is all worked up about. Here is "Hunter's Map."
There are few musicians I would rather hear live than Jesse Malin. If you are unfamiliar it will likely only take a listen or two and you will be completely won over. The NYC singer-song writer and guitarist is one of my dynamic performers in the US today. The strength of Jesse's 2007 album, "Glitter in the Gutter" are his great songwriting and his unique voice. Here is a live version (Austin, TX - 3.20.04) of "Since You're In Love" a song from Jesse's recommended second LP,"The Heat."
The Editors are a Birmingham, UK, independent rock group living in the shadow of England's post-punk revival. Having performed all over the world in support of their first release, "The Back Room," the band just released their latest album; "An End Has a Start" (2007). In between, The Editors appeared often, regularly performing new material. Here is their amazing cover of R.E.M.'s classic, "Orange Crush."
This cool music series has allowed me to share some music that might otherwise not find its way into people's lives. The talented Graham Coxon is someone who needs to be heard. Coxon is the former guitarist for Blur, but has gone on to do even better solo work. His latest album, "Love Travels at Illegal Speeds" is probably his finest work to date. Here is an acoustic version of "Standing On My Own Again" - a song from that record.

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