Two weeks after being dropped by new local label Neckbeard Records, Triangle hard-pop quintet I Was Totally Destroying It has now signed to excellent Portland imprint Greyday Records. The label—responsible for releases from Head of Femur, Southerly, Mayday and a dozen others—will release the band's "double EP," The Beached Margin/Done Waiting, on 12-inch vinyl on August 11. Printed in a limited edition of 250, each copy of the 11-track curio will include a digital download code for the entire EP and an exclusive digital bonus track. This EP was originally slated for CD-R release on Neckbeard in a similarly limited edition. The band's second album, Horror Vacui, will chase the EP's heels, as it's due on Greyday October 13 on CD and through the expected digital outlets.
That's not the only bit of news today for IWTDI: The band confirms its show Friday, May 22, at Local 506. Though the show remains a launch party for Neckbeard, IWTDI will play "because we want to share the stage with Lemming Malloy and Gray Young—not because we support or agree with the recent decisions or business practices of Neckbeard Records."
"We're all happy over here for IWTDI regarding their recent signing to Greyday," says Neckbeard co-founder Steve Salevan, "and we're looking forward to purchasing their new album as fans. We wish them the best in their future endeavors."
Lemming Malloy will release its debut LP, The Return of the Norfolk Regiment, that night. It will be the first release for Neckeard, which—in full disclosure mode—is a new joint co-presented by longtime Independent Weekly contributor Bryan Reed. For the excellent covers of the EP and LP and the full text of the band's statement, click that there jump.
Briefly: Updated XX Merge lineup; Merge documentary; Superchunk and Mac McCaughan on ABC News; Mac McCaughan, MAGNET guest editor
Less than a week after The Rosebuds and Lost in the Trees played Golden Belt to raise funds for Durham Arts Council, another enclave of popular local musicians has announced its own fundraiser for the grant-, class- and space-providing nonprofit: Grammy nominee Nnenna Freelon (who received a DAC grant in 1990 and has long supported the organization in return) will record a short session with The Beast—the eclectic hip-hop band fronted by her son, Pierce Freelon—Thursday, May 21, at the new Sound Pure Studios in Durham. The band and the singer will attempt to demystify the recording process in a panel with Sound Pure founder Todd Atlas, and dinner and wine donated by the nearby Piedmont will be served. Only 25 tickets will be sold for the intimate session. They're available for $100 each through DAC. All things considered, not a bad deal.
American Aquarium, Red Collar, Holy Ghost Tent Revival
The Pour House, Raleigh
Saturday, April 25
Last Saturday night, Raleigh road warriors American Aquarium showcased Dances for the Lonely, its latest batch of tunes inspired by frontman BJ Barham’s cross-country adventures with his band—and, of course, his women. Heavy on the new stuff, Barham spent the first half of the 80 minute set relating those out-of-town tales to the local crowd (which he—err, affectionately—referred to as “motherfuckers”) by describing the New Orleans enchantress who’s the subject of “Louisiana Beauty Queen,” discussing the “Queen of the Scene” (“a girl who thought she was too fucking cool for everyone”) or calling out the high school friend whose white ride is mentioned in “PBR Promenade.” Introducing the soaring album opener “Katherine Belle,” Barham explained, “If you’ve ever been to Columbia, South Carolina, you know there’s not anything there except for beer and women, and I happen to enjoy both.” In one of the highlights of the night, Caitlin Cary made her way from behind the bar to the stage to lend her pipes to the song, as she does on the album. Hit the jump for the video and more words on American Aquarium and the rest of the bill.
Kings of Leon, The Walkmen
Koka Booth Amphitheatre, Cary
Tuesday, April 28
There's been a bit of controversy about last night's Kings of Leon show at Cary's luxuriously wooded Koka Booth Amphitheatre: The Followill brothers decided to ban beach blankets, lawn chairs, beer bottles and water bottles at the show so that, one assumes, people wouldn't pelt the band if they were done with their beverage (I did see some cups headed in the band's direction, though, which I've never seen. And I saw some folks walking around in surgical masks to prevent exposure to swine flu, they said. So, yeah, you rock dudes are crazy.) On one hand, it's a rock show by a band that takes cues from Creedence and Van Morrison and, on record, amps it up with a little new Southern swagger, for better and for worse. So, like, why the fuck would you sit down for that if you're going to pay $45 to see the band. If you'd tried to sit last night, you actually wouldn't have been able to see them, anyway. Remember the whole rock show bit?
Last night, two locals—Bowerbirds and Lost in the Trees—shared a four-band bill at Manhattan's Mercury Lounge. Throughout the evening, a trickle of excited correspondence from members of both bands announced that a special guest had come to watch Bowerbirds' set: Neutral Milk Hotel leader/ de facto hermit/ "Salinger of indie rock" Jeff Mangum. There's, of course, little to report about the appearance besides just that—no collaborations, no serious hangouts. Mangum just watched and, between songs, held his beer between his teeth to clap. Maybe he'll come down to Chapel Hill later this year?
On the news tip, though, Dead Oceans will release Bowerbirds' second LP, Upper Air, Tuesday, July 7. (And, just to get it right, I co-released Bowerbirds' first album on this here label.) The Birds will likely offer some of those songs up ("Northern Lights," please) at a homecoming show at Local 506 Friday, May 8, before heading to Europe for a festivals-and-clubs tour later in the month. New in the Lost in the Trees world: Billions, one of the most esteemed booking agencies in the land, recently acquired the band, and they seem to have piqued some national label interest of late.
Four local musicians gathered to share songs and stories for the second installment of Music On The Porch, hosted by the Center for the Study of the American South in Chapel Hill last Friday.
A small crowd lined the lawn of the historic Love House and Hutchins Forum. Automobiles whisked by on Franklin Street, the occasional car stereo thumping for attention.
UNC music scholar Dr. Bill Ferris was in attendance, tapping his toes as his folklore understudy and emcee Katherine Doss posed questions to the evening's performers— Adam Price, Eric Roehrig, Heather McEntire and Lee Waters. They all seemed skilled in the art of brevity when it came to discussing the roots and influences of their craft.
One highlight of the performance was Heather McEntire's rendition of Un Deux Trois’ "Everything That Is Happening Is Happening," recorded live for your enjoyment.
Koka Booth Amphitheatre, Cary
Saturday, April 25
If each of George Jones’ infamously depressing albums should come standard with a bottle of whiskey and a loaded gun, it’s a good thing there was a strict no-weapons policy Saturday night at Cary’s Koka Booth Amphitheatre. Indeed, during Jones’ set, the heartache came in waves.
"Topical folk singer/ songwriter and new Columbia recording artist" Bobbert Dylan comes to Durham Bulls Athletic Park in Durham, N.C. July 28, bobdylan.com reports. The 5:30 p.m. show includes Willie Nelson and John Mellencamp, and all tickets are $67.50. We're guessing the $7.50 portion is reserved for the Coug... Children 14 and under get in free with a ticket holder. Bob Dylan's Together Through Life hits shelves April 28, though—truth be told—that jam hit the Internet for free earlier this week.
If you're hoping to see a band tonight in these parts, your choices are pretty, well, choice: Aside from traveling acts playing the usual suspects (Mogwai and The Twilight Sad @ Cat's Cradle; Napalm Death @ Volume 11; Starfucker and DJs @ Local 506), five strong local bills put the tunes in unusual places: