Thursday, July 30, 2009

Rev. Frederick J. Eikerenkoetter II Dies

RIP, Rev. Ike. Thanks for the beautiful theater in Washington Heights.

Sonic Youth performing "Death Valley '69" at the United Palace Theatre, home of Rev. Ike Ministries:

Monday, July 27, 2009

SHOULD WE TALK ABOUT THE WEATHER: A Conversation with The Paper Chase's John Congleton by Ed.

The brainchild of producer extraordinaire John Congleton, who has worked with everyone from (to paraphrase Will.I.Am in an interview I did with him in 1998 for CMJ) God (Kirk Franklin) to the Devil (Marilyn Manson) and just about everyone else in between, The Paper Chase is an amazing indie band whose discordant, over-the-top melodies deliver all the pomp and drama of groups like The Arcade Fire and The Decemberists without all the cheese. The Dallas-based group’s fifth album, Someday This Could All Be Yours Vol.1, was released this spring on Kill Rock Stars and is one of the finest rock albums of 2009 thus far. IRT had the great opportunity to communicate with Mr. Congleton via email in regards to his band’s new album and its weather-related themes, which really aren’t about weather at all, apparently, as he explains to us in an endearingly snarky way. For more information about The Paper Chase, visit their Web site at –Ed.

IRT: How did you come up with the concept of The Paper Chase?
John Congleton: I knew what kinda band I wanted, but I can’t really say I ever had a real concept. I remember reading a quote about Black Flag that it sounded like they were trying to break themselves into pieces with the music. I felt like that was a good starting point.

IRT: What was the impetus behind representing these songs with different disasters? What is it about disasters that inspires you to write these song cycles?
Congleton: I’ve been asked this a lot, as you can assume. But honest the idea was something I had for so long I can’t even recall what gave me the idea. And I guess that disaster are easy devices for metaphor which is the back bone of all hack poetry. And I am just a hack poet, I suppose.

IRT: How are these songs directly related to the disasters they represent?
Congleton: It’s purely metaphorical. These songs are not about natural disaster. It’s not that black and white. It’s all encrypted, but it seems clear to me if you make the effort to pay attention. For example, the tornado song is about capitalism running without regard to human concerns, the lightning song is about how we are attracted to the one person that can break us down the best like a bolt of lightning....I mean what are the chances of that mathematically? Uh let’s see what else....the common cold is just about avoiding closeness with people—kinda like a fear of commitment song, I guess. The blizzard one is about blind faith and how dangerous I think it is. I don’t know; I guess I could go on, but this seems long winded.

IRT: What disaster do you fear the most and why?
Congleton: Well, I’m in San Francisco right now....lets go with earthquakes. I guess they would be on my mind right now the most.

IRT: Have you ever lived through a natural disaster?
Congleton: Well sure, I live in Dallas, so I’ve seen my fair share of tornados for sure.

IRT: Of all the disasters alluded to on Someday This Will All Be Yours,
which one do you honestly feel could be the one that does Earth in first?

Congleton: Oh, I’m sure the earth will be here for a good long while. I certainly don’t thing we will be the ones to do it in, that’s for sure. That’s one thing that drives me crazy about the idea of "saving the earth"...nonsense... humans just mean they want a nice place to continue to live. People don’t really give a shit about the earth; not in any deep way some dickheads claim to.

IRT: Do you feel safer with the Obama Administration in office?
Congleton: I do, simply because he’s a better president, a smarter guy and somewhat more cut of my cloth.

IRT: Please tell us the story behind the amazing photo you chose for the cover art to Someday This Will All Be Yours.
Congleton: here actually is no story to speak of. i just said what i wanted to the artist and they made it for me. Danny Delpugatorio is his name. We have had a long history with him and it will continue.

IRT: Do you feel karma has anything to do with the "the existential crisis inherent within a universe seemingly fated to exterminate its population." Why or why not?
Congleton: No. This album isn’t about order. It’s more about chaos, and our struggle to make sense of said chaos. I believe that whatever you put into this life is what you get back but not exactly karma. And it’s not that I believe that the universe is chaos, but I do think to our puny brains is feels like chaos....and I find peace in that for some reason.

IRT: Are you a believer of eugenics and do you feel it is practiced amongst the global elite?
I have no hard evidence of such, but i wouldn’t put it past them. As a wise man once said, “Power does what power wants always.”

Video for "Said the Spider to the Fly"

Monday, July 20, 2009


Here is the official statement from the Beasties themselves in addition to a YouTube video Yauch and Ad-Rock created to address their fans directly.

Beastie Boys have today (20 July) issued the following statement:

‘Adam "MCA" Yauch of Beastie Boys was diagnosed last week as having a cancerous tumor in his left parotid (salivary) gland. Luckily it was caught early and is localized in one area, and as such is considered very treatable. It will however require surgery and several weeks of additional treatment. Fortunately the cancer is not in a location that will affect Yauch's vocal chords. Beastie Boys have canceled all upcoming concert appearances to allow time for Yauch's surgery and recovery. The release of the band's forthcoming album Hot Sauce Committee Part 1 will also be pushed back.

‘Paraphrasing from a video statement on, Yauch said, "I just need to take a little time to get this in check, and then we'll release the record and play some shows. It's a pain in the neck (sorry had to say it) because I was really looking forward to playing these shows, but the doctors have made it clear that this is not the kind of thing that can be put aside to deal with later."’

A statement from EMI reads: ‘Our thoughts, love and prayers are with Adam Yauch, his family and the Beastie Boys. The most important thing is to allow Adam to focus on staying healthy. We wish him all the best and a speedy recovery.’

We wish MCA a speedy recovery and our thoughts and prayers go out to him, his family and Mike D. and Ad-Rock. -Ed.

Thursday, July 16, 2009


Check out Taper's phenomenal capture here.

The set from opening act Yo La Tengo, who joined Wilco onstage during "Spiders (Kidsmoke)" should be up soon, and we will keep you posted.

Also, make sure to check out our great interview with "the Owsley Stanley of NYC", Mr. Taper himself, in the new issue of IRT, coming to a computer screen near you shortly.

Enjoy! -Ed.

Wilco and Yo La Tengo jamming together at last:

Wednesday, July 15, 2009


Bassist/vocalist/co-frontman Mattie Safer has left the ranks of the little-heard, much-celebrated Brooklyn dance-rock impresarios The Rapture, according to an official statement posted on the group's Web site by keyboardist Gabe Andruzzi:

Dear Fans and friends,

I’ve been meaning to catch you up on what’ s been going on in Rapture world. First off, I’m sad to say that at the begining of April our buddy Mattie Safer decided to leave the band. We are sad to see him go but it seems it is the best for all of us. Since then Luke, Vito and I have been on a creative tear. We’ve been working out of our little Brooklyn make shift studio, writing, demoing and jamming. I’m pretty damn excited to share the fruits of our labor with you. But its still gonna be a minute before we hit the studio for real. On the other hand, I am very pleased to announce that the people of the great continent of Australia will be some of the first to hear some of our new material live, when we arrive late September for Parklife festival. In the meantime, keep an eye on this blog and another on your neighborhood dance party, who knows maybe we’ll be spinnin’.

Lotsa Love,
The Rapture

While it's great news that the now trio is currently in the throes of a creative renaissance, it's sad to see Safer, whose onstage swagger and uncanny basslines brought much to the table during The Rapture's ascension from just another noisy indie rock band to a super-elastic groove collective who exploded upon their signing to the DFA label before being scooped up by Motown, making them the first white rock act since Rare Earth to sign to the label.

Here's hoping the waters Safer takes as he embarks on his post-Rapture career will be as exciting as the years he spent with this incredibly underrated NYC band. -Ed.

The Rapture performing "House of Jealous Lovers" on Letterman:


80's Chicago post-punk legends Naked Raygun are making a big comeback in 2009, embarking on a brief East Coast tour (lucky us!) and recording their first set of new material since 1992.

Here's the press release with tour dates:


Legendary Chicago punk rockers Naked Raygun recently announced their first trip into a recording studio in over a decade. In two weeks the band is set to enter Transient Sound Studios in Chicago, Illinois to lay down tracks that will eventually be pressed on a series of 7” records. These songs represent the first new material written by the band since 1992 and their first recordings since 1997.

Easily the most influential band bursting forth from the initial Chicago punk rock explosion, Naked Raygun also holds the distinction of being the longest running. When many of their peers were either breaking up or going metal in the mid-to-late 1980s, Naked Raygun soldiered on with their trademark sound, combining infectious vocal melodies with muscular guitar and a precision rhythm section. Echoes of the golden era of Raygun sound can be heard in punk rock circles worldwide.

The band broke up in 1992 and save for a one-off reunion in 1997 to celebrate the release of the Last of the Demohicans collection, stayed inactive while band members tended to family business and occasionally other musical projects such as The Bomb and Pegboy.

In the fall of 2006 drummer Eric Spicer began to get the itch to play the old songs again and gathered the guys together again to reunite for Riot Fest in Chicago. The overwhelming response from the sold out crowd of four thousand prompted Naked Raygun to re-form permanently with their final lineup of Spicer, Bill Stephens on guitar, Pierre Kezdy on bass and Jeff Pezzati on vocals.

Naked Raygun returned to action by playing shows across the Midwest and embarking on their first West Coast tour in over a decade with Bay Area legends the Swingin’ Utters. The band also released their first DVD via Riot Fest Records, entitled “What Poor Gods We Do Make.” The CD/DVD package combined a documentary covering the lifespan of the band with performances from their sold out performance at Riot Fest 2006.

During a recent two night stand at the House of Blues in Chicago, Naked Raygun debuted their first new songs in seventeen years. Met with a reaction of surprise and elation from the slam dancing crowd, both songs embody the classic “Chicago Sound” that Naked Raygun first defined more than twenty years ago.

Those two songs will no doubt appear on the upcoming 7” series the band has planned for Riot Fest Records. Tentative plans for the start of the series have been set for Fall 2009. Once the 7” series ends Naked Raygun plans to hole up in their rehearsal space for a while then re-enter the recording studio to track their first proper LP since 1990’s Raygun, Naked Raygun.
Outside of studio work, Raygun’s plate remains pretty full. This September Naked Raygun returns to the East Coast for the first time in almost twenty years; joining them on the tour are Philadelphia hardcore stars Paint It Black and Chicago’s own Shot Baker. Additionally the group will headline Riot Fest 2009 in Chicago this October, returning to the venerable Metro and playing with old friends Rights of the Accused, No Empathy and Wax.

Naked Raygun East Coast Tour

September 9, 2009
The Mideast (Cambridge, MA)
with Shot Baker

September 10, 2009
First Unitarian Church (Philadelphia, PA)
with Paint It Black, Shot Baker

September 11, 2009
Ottobar (Baltimore, MD)
with Paint It Black, Shot Baker

September 12, 2009
The Music Hall of Williamsburg (Brooklyn, NY)
with Paint It Black, Shot Baker

September 13, 2009
Maxwell’s (Hoboken, NJ)
with Paint It Black, Shot Baker

"Vanilla Blue"

Friday, July 10, 2009


Make sure you check out Sonic Youth's July 7th concert at the 9:30 Club in Washington, DC this weekend on the NPR Web site.

You can download the podcast here.

As with the band's recent show at the United Palace Theatre in Washington Heights, which was amazing by the way, the group rang in their emancipation from the major label machine with a strong, noisy set heavy on rare nuggets from their past and the majority of their stellar new album, The Eternal.

Here is the set list:

Main set:
Tom Violence
Leaky Lifeboat (For Gregory Corso)
Sacred Trickster
No Way
What We Know
Poison Arrow
Hey Joni
Malibu Gas Station
Calming the Snake
Walkin Blue
Massage the History
White Cross

First Encore:
Shadow of a Doubt

Second Encore:
Thunderclap for Bobby Pyn
Death Valley '69

Sonic Youth will be touring the country throughout the summer before heading to Europe in the fall.

For more information, check out their informative Facebook site at or their official site at

"Hey Joni" from the SoHo Apple Store June 9, 2009:

Live in Sweden, May 2009:

Sonic Youth performing "Antenna" on a recent episode of Later...With Jools Holland.

Thursday, July 9, 2009


From a July 1 interview with Katie Couric. Very poignant interview with the film legend on the MJ of his youth:

Watch CBS Videos Online

An episode of the Jackson 5 cartoon Spike is talking about. I remember this when MTV used to play these!:

"They Don't Really Care About Us (U.S. Version) Directed by Spike Lee:

Wednesday, July 8, 2009


Seeing Paris Jackson bawling her eyes out on national TV getting you down today? Fear not. Head over to the amazing Pipomixes Blogger site and download DJ Chris Read's amazing hour-long MJ/Jackson 5 tribute mix, which ranks right up there with DJ Ayres as one of the best MJ mixes out right now on the best Blogger site for hot mixtapes that you can take with you for years to come.

Or, just grab it here.

Here's the Track Listing:

1. Jackson 5 – Maybe Tomorrow (Loop)
2. Jackson 5 – Ain’t No Sunshine (Loop)
3. Dwele – Tribute to Michael Jackson (Re-edit) (Cover version of Michael Jackson – Human Nature)
4. Nas – It Ain’t Hard To Tell (Acapella) (Original version samples Michael Jackson – Human Nature)
5. Nas – It Ain’t Hard To Tell (Instrumental) (Samples Michael Jackson – Human Nature)
6. SWV – Right Here (Demolition Mix) (Samples Michael Jackson – Human Nature)
7. Jackson 5 – People Make The World Go Round
8. Pete Rock & CL Smooth – Appreciate (Acapella) (Original Version samples Jackson 5 – 2,4,6,8)
9. Jackson 5 – 2,4,6,8
10. Pete Rock & CL Smooth – Appreciate (Instrumental) (Samples Jackson 5 – 2,4,6,8)
11. The ARE – Walk On (Samples Jackson 5 – Walk On)
12. Michael Jackson Interview
13. Jackson 5 – We’re Almost There (DJ Spinna Remix)
14. The ARE – We’ve Come Too Far (Samples Jackson 5 – We’re Almost There)
15. Cool V – Tribute To Scratching Part 2 (Re-edit) (Samples Jackson 5 – We’re Almost There)
16. Jackson 5 – ABC (Tokya Ska Paradise Orchestra’a Justa Roots Rock Mix)
17. Jackson 5 – ABC (Album Version)
18. Naughty by Nature – O.P.P (Samples Jackson 5 – ABC)
19. De La Soul – Breakadawn (Foncett Power Radio Mix) (Samples Michael Jackson – I Can’t Help It)
20. Michael Jackson – I Can’t Help It
21. De La Soul – Breakadawn (Album Version) (Samples Michael Jackson – I Can’t Help It)
22. Michael Jackson – Heartbreak Hotel
23. Heavy D – Peaceful Journey (Samples Michael Jackson – Heartbreak Hotel)
24. Jackson 5 – It’s Great To Be Here
25. Jackson 5 Interview on Soul Train
26. Jackson 5 – Good Thing Goin’ (DJ Bobo James Remix)
27. Jackson 5 – I Want You Back (DJ Z Trip Remix) (Loop)
28. Jackson 5 – I Want You Back (Acapella)
29. Jackson 5 – I Want You Back (Original Version)
30. DJ Z Trip – Motown Breakdown (Samples Jackson 5 – I Want You Back)
31. Eric B & Rakim – I Know You Got Soul (Double Trouble Remix) (Samples Jackson 5 – I Want You Back)
32. Eric B & Rakim – I Know You Got Soul (Acapella) (Remix samples Jackson 5 – I Want You Back)
33. Jackson 5 – Enjoy Yourself (Loop)
34. Michael Jackson – Rock With You (Cookin Soul Remix feat. Notorious B.I.G)
35. Jackson 5 - The Love You Save (Sunaga T Experience Remix) (Loop)
36. Michael Jackson – Rock With You (Acapella)
37. Jackson 5 – Blame It On The Boogie
38. Michael Jackson – Don’t Stop Til You Get Enough
39. Michael Jackson – Bad (Acapella)
40. Michael Jackson – Billie Jean (Loop)
41. Ian Brown – Billie Jean (Cover Version of Michael Jackson – Billie Jean)
42. Michael Jackson – Billie Jean (Demo Version)
43. Michael Jackson – History (J Dilla Remix) (Loop)
44. 911 call from the Jackson Residence
45. Zulema – Where You Are (Cover Version of Jackson 5 – I Wanna Be Where You Are)

Tuesday, July 7, 2009


Classic Jacksons from the 1978 disco classic, Destiny, out now in remastered form on Epic/Legacy


From the Merge Records Press Dept:
On October 6, Merge Records will release Lou Barlow’s new album, Goodnight Unknown. In the four years since his career-redefining, mostly acoustic record Emoh, Lou Barlow has reunited with Dinosaur Jr. and reissued three of Sebadoh’s classic albums. But as the brilliant new Goodnight Unknown illustrates, he’s hardly living in the past. Borrowing the live-band energy of Dinosaur Jr. and the stylistic reach of Sebadoh, Barlow has built on Emoh’s full production and written a set of immediate, melodic pop songs that Lou describes as, “a cross between my later work with Folk Implosion and my earlier work with Sebadoh…to my ears, anyway.”

From the surging opening track “Sharing” to the surprisingly soulful performances on “The Right,” Goodnight Unknown benefits from Barlow’s tunefulness and his decision to record the record relatively quickly, with old friends and new. The Melvins’ Dale Crover adds inspired drum work throughout, and Goodnight Unknown’s urgent sound owes just as much to frequent Barlow collaborator Imaad Wasif (Yeah Yeah Yeahs, alaska!). The record’s considerable power also stems from the new talents on board, including producer Andrew Murdock and Lisa Germano.

Lou Barlow + The Missingmen will be on tour throughout the fall opening for Dinosaur Jr. The Missingmen are guitarist Tom Watson and drummer Raul Morales. Lou “stole” them from Mike Watt for this tour, and is excited to be bringing you the full band experience of Goodnight Unknown.

Goodnight Unknown Track Listing:
1. Sharing
2. Goodnight Unknown
3. Too Much Freedom
4. Faith In Your Heartbeat
5. The One I Call
6. The Right
7. Gravitate
8. I’m Thinking…
9. One Machine, One Long Fight
10. Praise
11. Take Advantage
12. Modesty
13. Don’t Apologize
14. One Note Tone

Lou Barlow + the Missingmen on Tour:
09-30 Toronto, ON - Phoenix Concert Theatre
10-01 Montreal, QUE - Pop Montreal Festival
10-02 Cambridge, MA - Middle East
10-03 Cambridge, MA - Middle East
10-04 Clifton Park, NY - Northern Lights
10-07 New Haven, CT - Toad's Place
10-08-09 Washington, DC - 9:30 Club
10-09 Philadelphia, PA - Theatre of the Living Arts
10-10 Columbus, OH - Newport Music Hall
10-11 Pontiac, MI - The Crofoot
10-13 Madison, WI - The Majestic Theatre
10-14 St. Louis, MO - The Pageant
10-15 Chicago, IL - Vic Theatre
10-16 Louisville, KY - Headliner's Music Hall
10-17 Atlanta, GA - Variety Playhouse
10-26 Kansas City, MO - The Beaumont Club
10-27 Omaha, NE - Slowdown
10-29 Boulder, CO - Boulder Theater
10-30 Fort Collins, CO - Aggie Theatre
11-03 Tempe, AZ - Marquee Theatre
11-04 Solana Beach, CA - Belly Up Tavern
11-06 San Francisco, CA - The Fillmore
11-07 Portland, OR - Wonder Ballroom

Lou Barlow covering RATT's "Round and Round"

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Jim Jarmusch Plugs Rhino Records in New Paltz!

This is just the coolest...

Here's an excerpt from an interview with Jim Jarmusch on GreenCine Daily about his upcoming film The Limits of Control, where he plugs my favorite record store, Rhino Records, in New Paltz and its fearless proprietor, Rick Lange, who I have known since I was 16. Kudos Jim! Hey Rick, you better stock up on those Del-Byzanteens records!

Check out the whole interview here, but please enjoy this excerpt with said plug below.

I stay abreast of new music by geeking out on music blogs, but how do you find all this cool music? Do you still go to a lot of record stores, or do friends keep you tuned in to new artists?

I'm not a Web guy because I don't have a computer, although I often ask people to look stuff up for me. I don't know, it's sort of a general antenna because I love music. You know, there are music stores that in the past I depended on a lot, like Final Vinyl, that used to be great to order things anywhere in the world that were in print, or what's his name, that little shop on Bowery just south of 8th street. Damn, I love that guy. He's always been really cool. There's Other Music, and in New Paltz, there's Rhino Records that is really run unlike any kind of Rhino chain—the guy there, Rick, is amazing. Those record stores are important, but they've been less so for me recently, maybe because I haven't stopped in very much. I always read the British music press, and I try to listen to what underground radio exists, or college-type radio. I'm just always scanning, and I've always been that way, like, music, music, music. I love to get playlists off of [Jersey City's] WFMU or WVKR in Poughkeepsie—Vassar has a good radio station. WFUV has a good morning show in New York, and there's some underground hip-hop shows on WKCR, the Columbia station. There's the beautiful Sunday morning country shows that I listen to, classic country.


San Diego's the Black Heart Procession have a new album coming out, entitled Six, will be released October 6, 2009 on one of IRT's favorite record labels, Temporary Residence Ltd. More news on this to come in the next few weeks, but for now check out the album's first single, "Rats", here.

01. When You Finish Me
02. Wasteland
03. Witching Stone
04. Rats
05. Heaven and Hell
06. Drugs
07. All My Steps
08. Forget My Heart
09. Liars Ink
10. Suicide
11. Back To The Underground
12. Last Chance
13. Iri Sulu

For more information, check out the band's MySpace page or the site of their brand, spanking new label.

Black Heart Procession live 2008:

Bonnaroo Megapost on Largehearted Boy

One of the better blogs out there in IRT's opinion is none other than Largehearted Boy.

Recently the man himself posted a monster post containing a bunch of MP3 and FLAC downloads of all the performances at Bonnaroo worth your time.

Might I suggest the David Byrne, Beastie Boys and Paul McCartney sets for ones to grab first. And then go for the Bruce and Phish stuff, of course...

Check it out here.

Enjoy! -Ed.

Behind the scenes footage of Triumph the Insult Comic Dog interviewing the Yeah Yeah Yeahs (never aired)

Triumph does Stand-up at Bonnaroo

Phish performing "You Enjoy Myself" at Bonnaroo 2009

Carrie Brownstein on Michael Jackson

Check out former Sleater-Kinney guitarist Carrie Brownstein's great post on Michael Jackson from her NPR blog Monitor Mix.

Her past post in regards to her initial reaction to Jacko's death can also be found here.

Ms. Brownstein's posts are some of the most entertaining things to read on the NPR Web site, and I suggest you bookmark her for a regular daily visit.

Thank you. -Ed.

"Dirty Diana"