Posts Tagged ‘Detroit’

There’s something extraordinary about the story of how Anna Burch came to sign for Polyvinyl Records. The Detroit songwriter was spotted by fellow Michigan native, and Polyvinyl artist, Fred Thomas, who sent it straight to his label boss with a simple note, “This is not a drill. You need to hear this.” Listening to Anna’s new single, 2 Cool 2 CareAnna Burch is the newest addition to the Polyvinyl label. She released a self-directed video and is hitting the road. Anna used to be in a band that was a favorite of Ours, Frontier Ruckus. Now she’s taking her lovely vocals on her own.

2 Cool 2 Care is the first track to be lifted from Anna’s as yet untitled debut record out next year, an album she recorded with Angel Olsen producer Collin Dupuis. The track is a simple, but arresting piece of lo-fi atmospherics, Anna’s warm, laid back vocals, accompanied by a Frankie Cosmos-like guitar line and the simplest of ticking drum beats, an example of the whole far outweighing it’s parts. Lyrically, it seems to tackle the self-destructive tendency to over-analyse and pressurise relationships, as Anna sings, “you scare me when you’re indifferent, I like you best when you’re a mess”Sure, we’re suckers for a hazy slice of sun-drenched melancholy, but Anna Burch might just be doing it better than any act we’ve heard this year.

Anna Burch’s debut album will be out next year via Polyviynl Records. 

thanks For The Rabbits

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Protomartyr Relatives in Descent review

Protomartyr has never wanted for momentum. The Detroit band, at their best, has always been racing toward an endpoint, driven by a sense of urgency, outrunning some kind of unseen danger or darkness that’s constantly nipping at their heels, in the vapor trails behind Greg Ahee’s guitar riffs or in the pregnant pauses in Joe Casey’s personal narratives or commentaries. Protomartyr aren’t going to revolutionize guitar music. That’s a big ask for any rock band, where many acts are hyper-literate, fiercely political or formally adventurous — though the group possesses all of these strengths. Their consistency is ultimately what sets Protomartyr apart from the pack. Their development has been steady, as each new album broadened the scope and lyrical ambition of its predecessor. Relatives In Descent is a culmination of the band’s potential; they sound a career removed from the scrappy garage punks who released No Passion All Technique just four years ago, even as they remain snidely dissatisfied.”Casey’s sardonic lyrical humor. But most of all, it’s because Protomartyr never stops moving.

“A Private Understanding,” the opening track to the band’s fourth album Relatives in Descent, has a similar feeling to past Protomartyr openers—it’s perpetually on the brink of building up to something, and it feels tense and climactic. But it lingers on moments in a way that few of the band’s songs have before. The verses feel a bit more drawn out, with the first echoing the phrase, “Never wanna hear those vile trumpets anymore,” while the second track recounts a true story of Elvis Presley seeing the face of Stalin in a cloud: “He was affected profoundly, but he could never describe the feeling/He passed away on the bathroom floor.” By the end, Casey croons, “She’s just trying to reach you,” echoing a consistent theme of failed methods of communication and the complicated ways that people process those messages. As empathetically as these figures are drawn, they’re still mired in the fatalistic absurdity of never being able to say what needs to be said. Maybe she’ll never actually reach you; Elvis is dead on his bathroom floor.

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Relatives in Descent, illustrated by its unsettling opening track, is the darkest Protomartyr album to date because it’s so reflective of the time in which it was created. It’s not a political album, but rather a bleakly philosophical album of meditations on the fallible nature of truth and self-destructive ideals that brought us to an age of willful ignorance and “fake news.” Nobody gets off particularly easily here. Casey sneers mockingly throughout the sing-songy punk stomp of “Male Plague,” reminding the self-inflictedly mediocre white men at its core that “Everybody knows it’s gonna kill you someday.” In the brooding “Corpses in Regalia,” he barks, “Decent people don’t live like that,” laying down an indictment on wealth and excess, while the driving “Don’t Go to Anacita” condemns the exploitation inherent in privilege. Only “Up the Tower” actually addresses what sounds a lot like the president, himself, and “the hatred he brewed within us,” following up on an observation of a golden door with a violent command to “knock it down! knock it down! knock it down!” It’s the kind of catharsis that Protomartyr has always done well, dialed up to match the dreadful urgency of the moment.

Some of the darkest moments on the album are those that happen on a purely instrumental level, giving Relatives in Descent a gothic wash of blacks, grays and charcoals. Those hues are rendered brilliantly, their chilling tone resulting in the strongest batch of songs they’ve written to date. The opening riff of standout single “My Children” has a subtly eerie tone, creating an ominous passageway toward its unexpectedly catchy chorus. “Windsor Hum” chimes with a horror-movie-soundtrack riff, underscoring Casey’s reassurance, “everything’s fine,” with the sick-to-your-stomach feeling of knowing that it isn’t. And the reverb-laden sound of closing dirge “Half Sister” finds Protomartyr capturing the grimmest of post-punk gloom brilliantly.

In that final track, Casey says “truth is a half sister,” before looping back to an early refrain from the album, “she is trying to reach you.” In intercepting these communiqués, to better understand why humanity is sometimes doomed to reject truth, Protomartyr delves into some dark places albeit ones that yield their most rewarding results.

Bob Seger had released eight albums and had been on the road for nearly a solid decade when he played Detroit’s Cobo Hall on September 4th, 1974 — but he was still largely unknown outside of the Midwest.

‘Live’ Bullet is a live album recorded at the Cobo Hall , released in April 1976, during the heyday of that arena’s time as an important rock concert venue. For Detroit fans, however, the entire Live’ Bullet recording captured a Detroit artist at the height of his energy and creativity, in front of a highly appreciative hometown crowd. ‘Live’ Bullet also captured the wild and free spirit of rock concerts in the seventies, and has great historic value in that regard. Rolling Stone Critic Dave Marsh called it “one of the best live albums ever made.

The main problem was that he simply couldn’t capture the magic of his stage show on in a studio, which is likely why Live Bullet made such a huge impact. His cover of Ike & Tina’s “Nutbush City Limits” got a ton of national airplay, and suddenly Live Bullet was selling like crazy. It was also fueled by “Turn The Page,” a 1973 track about the rigors of touring life that has been a mainstay of classic rock radio for the past 40 years. “We were doing, like, 250 to 300 shows a year before Live Bullet,” Seger said in 2013. “We were playing virtually five nights a week, sometimes six, as the Silver Bullet Band and we just had that show down.”

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Detroit’s Protomartyr have had a steady rise to gaining the awareness they deserve for their dark, alcohol-soaked post-punk. In 2015 they released The Agent Intellect to widespread acclaim, ending up on many year-end lists or quickly became ‘ones to watch’, even though that was their third album. The advantage of this slow rise into sight is that they’ve had time to hone their vicious and cunning rock – and now for their fourth album they will have an even bigger platform from which to reach people, as they have been signed by Domino Recordings.

Protomartyr’s fourth album will be called Relatives In Descent, a perfectly gloomy-yet-epic title, and it comes out on September 29th. That still feels like some way off, but in the meantime they have presented the 5 minute, album-opening statement ‘A Private Understanding’, which touches on the human condition, longing and Elvis Presley. You can consume that below.

Protomartyr ‘A Private Understanding’ taken from the new album ‘Relatives In Descent’ out September 29th on Domino Recordings

Deluxe edition LP of “Relatives In Descent” is up for pre-order. Limited pressing on multi-colored vinyl, includes 24-page lyric zine and a foldout poster.

Nigh on ten years ago,  The White Stripes unveiled the most ambitious record of their career. Taking its name from the mis-appropriation of the British exhortation “Ecky thump” the Stripes’ Icky Thump would prove to be the final full-length studio album from the beloved Detroit duo. To celebrate not only the ten years since the albums release, but also twenty years since Jack and Meg started the White Stripes AND the 500th release in the Third Man Records’ catalog, we are delighted to announce the release of our 33rd Vault package, “Icky Thump X”.

Deluxe Icky Thump 180-gram, colored vinyl 
The cornerstone of the package is the deluxe, “contained explosion” colored vinyl repressing of Icky Thump. Previously only ever available on boring black vinyl, this double LP, 180-gram vinyl dream is housed in a glorious tip-on sleeve with slightly modified artwork and sealed with a Victorian update on the original red/white sticker that was begrudgingly slit open by fidgety record collectors overly concerned with “condition.” Remastered from the original 1” analog tapes in Nashville, TN, Icky Thump will be the first-ever Vault title manufactured at the Third Man pressing plant in Detroit. You will not believe your ears.


Track List:

Icky Thump
You Don’t Know What Love Is (You Just Do As You’re Told)
300 MPH Torrential Outpour Blues
Conquest
Bone Broke
Prickly Thorn, But Sweetly Worn
St. Andrew (This Battle Is In The Air)
Little Cream Soda
Rag and Bone
I’m Slowly Turning Into You
A Martyr For My Love For You
Catch Hell Blues
Effect & Cause

12″ Icky Thump Extras Vinyl
The logical companion piece to Icky Thump is the collection compiling all nine of the non-album b-sides recorded for (and during) the release and tour cycle. Icky Thump Extras joins live covers (Hank Williams’ “Tennessee Border”), alternate versions recorded in the middle of a horse-racing track in Canada (“You Don’t Know What Love Is…”) with Beck produced exclusives (“It’s My Fault For Being Famous”) and couples them with newly reimagined artwork from Grammy Award-winning designer Rob Jones. Consider this the first and last time any of these songs will appear on 12-inch vinyl, pressed on luminescent lunar-colored vinyl. Extras will also be manufactured at the Third Man Pressing in Detroit.


Track List:

Tennessee Border (originally by Hank Williams)
Baby Brother (originally by Bill Carter and the Rovin Gamblers)
You Don’t Know What Love Is (You Just Do As You’re Told) (frat rock version)
A Martyr For My Love For You (acoustic version)
It’s My Fault For Being Famous
Cash Grab Complications On The Matter
Honey, We Can’t Afford To Look This Cheap
Conquest (acoustic mariachi version)
Conquista (Spanish language version)

The Red Demos
Prior to entering Blackbird Studios for the tracking of Icky Thump, the White Stripes did a full run-through of the tracks in demo form to workshop ideas and get thoughts on tape at their Nashville rehearsal spot. This would prove to be the Only time the band would ever demo an album before recording. Forgotten by all involved in the intervening ten years, The Red Demos is a startling insight into the germination of the songs that would soon be blasted out at arenas and festivals the world over. Of particular interest is the first ever release of the instrumental “Monkeys Have It Easy”, a title previously teased via the original Icky Thump press release in 2007. Cover art depicts a working mock-up of the unedited image used on the original album and exists as the ideal compliment to both that original issue and the mono mix of Icky Thump from the vault package No1 .

Track List: 

You Don’t Know What Love Is (You Just Do As You’re Told)
A Martyr For My Love For You
Rag and Bone
Catch Hell Blues
Little Cream Soda
Prickly Thorn, But Sweetly Worn
Monkeys Have It Easy (previously unreleased)
Bone Broke
Icky Thump
Conquest
300 MPH Torrential Outpour Blues

Exclusive Polaroid Photo Book
To further push this package into “I Cannot Believe They Did That” territory is an exclusive book comprised of Polaroid photos, tracking notes and insight from Icky Thump session photographer and White Stripes’ confidante David Swanson . Comprised 100% of previously unseen and unshared material, the of-the-moment documentation of the album and its recording process by Swanson’s intuitive and discerning eye is revelatory.
Mystery Art Prints by Rob Jones
To even further blow this thing out of the water is one of nine different 8×10 White Stripes images by Rob Jones. Randomly inserted so you have no idea which one you’ll get, these include classic updates on art and graphics from the original release era in addition to completely new ideas, all rendered in the highest quality silkscreen printing and suitable for immediate framing or burning.

“Rag and Bone” Enamel Pin Set
Not enough? Ok, take Two enamel pins that when combined depict the horse skeleton imagery originally featured on the 7-inch artwork for “Rag and Bone” and understand full well that the addition of said pins will elevate any drab old potato sack to a best-dressed list ensemble.

Cross of St. Andrew Soft Touch Box
All of these components will be lovingly housed in a soft-touch coated telescoping box that reproduces the cross of St. Andrew used as an important graphic in Icky Thump’s issue ten years ago and rendered even more poignant now as the specific version of that cross (the Cross of Burgundy) forms the shape of an X. 

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Stef Chura’s star is definitely on the rise: The Detroit native recently released her debut, “Messes”, via Urinal Cake Records, Its an 11-song set of warbling guitar-pop anthems that showcase her husky, perpetually down turned vocals. She’s earned coverage across music web sites like on Stereogum, Pitchfork and NPR, and she can count Fred Thomas (Saturday Looks Good to Me) as a fan; the noted indie-rock vet produced and played bass on her first LP. Reflecting a post-adolescent period of trial and error,

Chura’s debut appears to writhe with growing pains as she quavers to an unwilling crush, “Right when it starts to feel like home / It’s time to go” on album opener “Slow Motion.” The conflicts repeat on the withered follow-up, “You,” where Chura trills like skeptical Dolores O’Riordan: “Sick and tired / Always admired you from afar.”

Chura’s internal debates, which are featured prominently on Messes, can also spill out in person. She admits to sometimes wishing she’d put more effort into music earlier in her 20s, despite her blossoming visibility (she’s about to tour with Washington D.C. punks Priests next). Then, just as suddenly, she changes her mind. “I think a lot of people think there’s these picture-perfect stories of someone getting really successful when they’re young, There’s no right age to be doing anything.”

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The Romantics are an American rock band often put under the banner of power pop and new wave from Detroit, Michigan, United States, formed in 1976. The band’s first show was on Valentine’s Day at My Fair Lady Club, in Detroit, opening for the New MC5 in 1977. They were influenced by 1950s American rock and roll, Detroit’s MC5, The Stooges, early Bob Seger, Motown R&B, 1960s North American garage rock as well as the British Invasion rockers. For three years the band was on the road, playing in famous places like Boston’s Rathskeller, CBGB in NYC’s Bowery, Philadelphia, Pa., Hot Club and Cleveland’s Agora, and subsequently were signed to Nat Weiss’ Nemperor independent Epic/Portrait record label.

The Romantics achieved popularity in the United States, the Netherlands, Germany, Canada, parts of Asia, Australia, Europe, and Hispanic America on the strength of the band’s well-crafted pop songs and high energy shows as well as noted for their look; black vinyl to red leather suits in their music videos. some new power pop band with a new wavey name showing up, like The Shoes, The Beat, The Records, who had at least one deliriously catchy single, skinny ties, and proto-mullet haircuts. The Romantics’ “What I like About You” might just make the top spot of all of those great songs, and they had some staying power compared to those others.

See if this gives it away…. ‘What I like about you’ is ‘when I look in your eyes’ I know you’re going to ‘tell it to Carrie’…..

The Romantics released their debut LP. It was a great shot in the arm for everyone who loved Detroit Rock and Roll.

Citizen Zero have unveiled their new single ‘What A Feeling’.

The single is taken from the Detroit rock four-piece debut album ‘State Of Mind, due for release on August 12th via Wind-up Records.

‘What A Feeling’ is a catchy rock concoction with an addictive chorus and shimmering guitars set for a scorching summer.

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Josh Mayle – Vox
Sammy Boller – Guitar
Sam Collins – Bass
John Dudley – Drums

‘What A Feeling’
From the forthcoming album State of Mind | Out 8.12.16

On a Saturday sometime back in  August, Pitchfork presented a pop-up show at Villian. It featured a set from the band Protomartyr, and Pitchfork.tv shared three songs from their performance. Watch them perform “Why Does It Shake?”, “I’ll Take That Applause”, and “How He Lived After He Died” below.

Protomartyr is an American post-punk band formed in 2008 in Detroit, Michigan. It features Joe Casey on vocals, Greg Ahee on guitar, Alex Leonard on drums and  on bass guitar.

Protomartyr – “I’ll Take That Applause” – Live

On August 29th, 2015, in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, three bands came together for a pop-up show announced only days before, with a surprise headliner.Protomartyr

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Protomartyr have a new LP ‘The Agent Intellect’ fast approaching, the Detroit-based post-punk mob have unveiled a second cut, the fidgety ‘I Forgive You’. With Screeching, jittery guitars forming the track’s predominant thread, as vocalist Joe Casey’s downbeat drawl, drags things through the dirt. When held up against the previously unveiled ‘Why Does It Shake?’ and ‘Dope Cloud, it’s evidence of Protomartyr’s ability to warp expectations while still keeping things wrapped tight in their familiar post-punk guise.

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‘The Agent Intellect’ will be released via Hardly Art Records on October 9th  To celebrate, the band have plotted a number of UK dates alongside fellow bruisers METZ – as follows:

OCTOBER
30th Brighton, Green Door Store
31st Leeds, Brudenell Social Club

NOVEMBER
1st London, Scala
3rd Bristol, The Fleece
4th Manchester, Sound Control
5th Glasgow, Stereo
6th Birmingham, The Rainbow Cellar
7th Cardiff, Swn Festival