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Wolf Eyes, a Michigan-based trio, are the current stars of the noise scene. Theyve made major fans in Sonic Youth, who have invited them on tour; theyve played high-profile gigs at the All Tomorrows Parties festival in 2004 and 2006; and theyre even signed to a record label youve heard of (Sub Pop, the label that made Nirvana famous and vice-versa.) They are, perhaps, the deepest musically of all the current noise bands. Their latest album, Human Animal, has all the requisite moments of brutality youd expect; listening to the title track through headphones is like rolling down a jagged mountainside in a flaming barrel.
The Residents dont do things like normal people. Normal people wouldnt, say, form a band in order to remain anonymous, make a fourteen-hour movie about one-armed midgets, or stage a live show intentionally designed to upset and baffle the audience. Its not that theyre trying to be weirdthats just the way they are.
Tim Rutili of Califone is used to being asked about the band’s uniquely American sensibility. Roots, after all, play a major part in their sound—their new album is titled Roots & Crowns. But these roots aren’t just American; the album title is actually an allusion to a novel by Robertson Davies, a Canadian writer with a long white beard and an aversion to word processors.
The New York Times has just published a piece about the renaissance of rock clubs in New York City in the post-CBGB era, citing Brooklyn as “the biggest growth area.” Well, twenty years ago there may have been musicians living in Brooklyn, but you certainly couldn’t get anyone to come into Brooklyn to see music. How do I know? We tried.
Headquartered at Lincoln Center, College Music Journal’s twenty-sixth annual festival offers a melange of a thousand musical acts of all genres hailing from anywhere between Tokyo and Texas, many dressed for the Halloween holiday wearing fake mustaches or rigged-up representations of Snakes on a Plane.
“True insanity doesn’t need to be maintained,” says Th’ Legendary Shack Shakers’s frontman Colonel J. D. Wilkes on touring their new album, Pandelerium.
Adam Green is a darling of the hipster post-art scene and is the man behind the cult hit “Jessica”—a tongue-in-cheek ballad to Jessica Simpson. Somewhere along the way he decided that the public wanted a whole album of music like that. Bad idea.
I know this older guy who follows new bands but instantly dismisses 99% of them. When he heard one hotly hyped recent CD, he deadpanned, “I’m glad these young men have found something to do with their excess energy.” But last year, when the naysayer heard the Double’s impressive debut, Palm Fronds, he nodded affirmatively and actually uttered the words, “These guys are good.” If the Brooklyn-based quartet can impress this grouch, it’s clear they’re onto something.