How do you take on a hurricane? With SLAYER, of course

With SLAYER, of course How do you take on a hurricane?
Florence swung north and was downgraded to a Category 1. And this isn’t the first time Pittman (known as “Florida Man” in meteorological circles) has battled hurricanes. An American flag and SLAYER’s “Reigning Blood.”

Whatever Pittman did seemed to work, too. (Via The Daily Dot) With Hurricane Florence ambling towards the state still rated as a Category 4 a million people ordered to evacuate, Lane Pittman thought he’d come to the rescue. His weapons? His record includes a brawl with Hurricane Matthew (2016) and Hurricane Irma (2017). This is one of those stories that could only come out of Florida, the testes of America.

I’m not sure what kinds of musical weirdness this is, but I can

I’m not sure what kinds of musical weirdness this is, but I can
If you watch this with the sound off, it looks like this poor man is having some kind of seizure. after eatin a Nature Valley granola bar pic.twitter.com/H6enLMU4Nv
— CJ from 🐣. But if you turn up the volume, it takes on a whole new meaning. (@willis_cj) September 13, 2018

(Via Larry)

Looking to break your band internationally? Take a look at this.

Looking to break your band internationally? Take a look at this.
Chris McKee is the Toronto based author of Life on the road with the Wu-Tang Clan and has spent more than 20 years working as a booking agent and tour manager for dozens of Grammy & Juno winning musicians. In other words, if you need advice about breaking it internationally, he knows a thing or two.

Rock My World Canada, Chapter 4: Len

[Mike Carr has put together a massive volume on Canadian music history entitled Canadian Alternative & Indie Reference and Collector’s Guide. Find out more about Gandharvas and hundreds of other Canadian artists in the softcover edition of Canadian Alternative & Indie Reference and Collector’s Guide. Follow on Facebook and Twitter, too. Get your copy here. During the height of their popularity, the band’s lineup included Brendan Canning, who co-founded the indie rock band Broken Social Scene shortly after leaving Len. – AC]

Len is an alternative rock band from Toronto. They are best known as a one-hit wonder for their 1999 song “Steal My Sunshine”. Len was never able to repeat the success of “Steal My Sunshine”, but continued to put out albums until 2005 before a seven-year hiatus. The band consisted of siblings Marc Costanzo (vocals, guitar) and Sharon Costanzo (vocals, bass) and a revolving lineup of other musicians. This is the latest excerpt from his book. It’s an incredible discography of hundreds of bands.
Rock My World Canada, Chapter 4: Len

The Marketing of Rock’n’Roll

The Marketing of Rock’n’Roll
If you’re interested into the marketing machinery behind the popular song, here’s a two-part program from Terry O’Reilly’s CBC program, Under the Influence. Recommended.

Random music news for Monday, September 17, 2018

(Via Tom)
The oral history of the Judgement Night soundtrack is actually the story of hip-hop mating with rock. Why won’t The Killers’ “Mr. No wonder Taylor Swift is scared to pick up her mail
is that trial regarding Justin Bieber’s egging of his neighbour’s house still going on? Back at work after two weeks of time off and just in time for tonight’s Polaris Music Prize gala. (Via Moe) Some women are annoyed that the new iPhones are just too big for their hands. I mean, it’s been fourteen years! If you were ever a fan of Silverchair, you should read this. Bieber is also applying for US citizenship. There’s an app for that. Yep. Looking to jam with someone anywhere in the world? Michael Jackson’s Thriller: “The most inspiring album of all time.” Discuss. I’ll be the one in the back suffering from severe jetlag. Rick Astley…beer? Fine. If you’re gonna be in a K-pop band, think about who you’re going to date–or else. (Via Larry)
If you’re a fan of AC/DC, there’s a new book coming on the Bon Scott years this November. Brightside” leave the UK charts? Looks like George Michael left a lot of music behind when he died. Lenny Kravitz…toothpaste? Paul McCartney just scored his first #1 album in 36 years with his new record, Egypt Station…
…and Macca has something to say about Donald Trump. Check out this musical army that’s protesting against Trump. Well, wasn’t that nice of Metallica to do this in Winnipeg. Here’s a great history of the Pixies Surfer Rosa album. While we have Polaris, there are grumblings about the similar Mercury Prize in the UK. Why are so many older rockers getting into real estate? Take him. And now, the music news for September 17, 2018. Metallica reveals some sonic secrets about their new whiskey. Tony Bennett just nailed down a very obscure Guinness Book of World Records prize.
Random music news for Monday, September 17, 2018

New Music from the Inbox for September 17, 2018: Subways on the Sun, First Aid Kit, The Revivalists, & More!

They have a swinging pop sound that focuses on songwriting and soul-driven arrangements. Here’s one of the singles. The video pays homage to 70s horror movies.  
Watch:

Artist: First Aid Kit
Song: “Rebel Heart”
Album: Single

Swedish sister folk duo First Aid Kit wrote this song after an evening of playing occult board games. The upcoming LP promises sonic complexity, celebration, and catharsis. Artist: Subways on the Sun
Song: “Know It All”
Album: Single

Hailing from Seattle, indie rockers Subways on the Sun are getting ready to release their sophomore album later this week. This song was written during a depressed and anxious time in her life. Watch:

Artist: The Revivalists
Song: “You and I”
Album: Single

With a new album due out in November, New Ireland’ the Revivalists have released another single. Listen:

Artist: XXAIA
Song: “Smile”
Album: Single

 
Texas-born musician XXAIA has a unique sound whose vocals sound like a cross between Blondie and Annie Lennox. Listen:

Artist: Rob Gallo
Song: “Love Supreme (Work Together!)”
Album: Single

From his new album coming out early next month, Rob Gallo’s latest single is upbeat and fun. Listen: 

Artist: The Imperial Sound
Song: “A Man Like You”
Album: The New AM

A new band out of Chicago, the Imperial Sound just released their debut at the end of August. Apparently, Gallo wrote this song using the Garage Band app on his phone during a flight. Watch:

 
New Music from the Inbox for September 17, 2018: Subways on the Sun, First Aid Kit, The Revivalists, & More!

It was a deadly and weird weekend in music

It was a deadly and weird weekend in music
Three other people are listed as critically ill. A man and a woman, both in their twenties are dead after ODing at the Defqon.1 music festival in Sydney. Gunshots can be heard as someone places “La Cucaracha” on a harp. The shooting took place in Plaza Garibaldi. Unknown. The shooters escaped on motorcycles. The motive? Item 1: Five people shot in Mexico City by assassins posing as a mariachi band
If you’ve ever been to Mexico, you’ll know that mariachi bands are everywhere, especially in the country’s public places and plazas. (Via CNN)
Item 2: Two dead and three very ill after drug overdoses at an Australian music festival. Another 13 people were sent to the hospital with drug-related issues while 700 (!!!) sought some kind of medical assistance. There are two weekend items regarding death and destruction in the world of music. Friday night a group of men dressed in mariachi bands walked into a Mexico City restaurant and opened fire, killing five people. More details here. There is video of the killing.

Ever wonder how long-lost recordings are found and restored? Read this.

Ever wonder how long-lost recordings are found and restored? Read this.
The boy thinks it looks like a record though. It is round, metal, and old. When you start to dig into the history of lost records, you realize quickly that Paramount was not alone in its carelessness. Ever since recordings have been made, they’ve been misplaced, cast aside, or intentionally erased—sometimes because the labels simply needed more tape, and other times for more nefarious or foolish reasons. A young boy, fishing with his father on the banks of the Milwaukee River, spies a glinting object in the dirt. It could be any number of things: a hubcap, a large lid, the flat side of a pie pan. He and his dad go to take a closer look—and just like that, a piece of history is uncovered. Each in his own way is an archaeologist of lost music. What’s the story behind these discoveries and reissues? Keep reading. Every once in a while we hear about how a long-lost recording by a famous artist (John Coltrane, David Bowie, Jimi Hendrix, etc.) has been discovered and then restored. To learn more about how recordings are lost and what has been done to ensure we don’t lose them forever, I recently spoke with Grammy-winning mastering engineer Michael Graves, world-renowned collector and producer John Tefteller, and Resonance Records executive vice president and general manager Zev Feldman. They had found a metal master for Coot Grant and Socks Wilson’s “Uncle Joe,” originally released by Paramount Records in 1929. While many songs have gone missing over the century-and-a-half since audio recording was made possible, every year diligent researchers recover more and more of our nearly lost past. How could such an important label have been so careless with its own legacy? Let’s take a look at this article from Reverb.com.

How the Grateful Dead changed concert sound systems forever

That wasn’t always the case. Then came festivals like Monterey and Woodstock that advanced the technology a little further. Enter the Grateful Dead and their custom-made Wall of Sound system, created by longtime associate Owsley Stanley. If rock was to grow into a stadium-sized business, that just wouldn’t do. Working with a band called Alembic, Stanley created something the world of live music had never seen before. All they had were mics next to their amps, feeding the same public address system baseball announcers would use. When we go to a show today, we expect the PA system to deliver proper sound, no matter how big the venue. But there was still much work to the be done. His goal was to make the band’s stage sound as clear as it was on their records. Clarity, bass response, feedback–all these things needed to be addressed. Take the case of The Beatles when they played Shea Stadium in August 1964. (Via Laughing Squid) Both the Beach Boys and (wait for it) Herb Albert and the Tijuana Brass commissioned bespoke sound systems for their tours.
How the Grateful Dead changed concert sound systems forever

Because it’s Monday, you meed an algorithmic mashup of Morrissey and a P90X workout

But it’s nevertheless interesting to examine this odd mashup created by “a combination of Morrissey’s words and customer reviews of P90X on Amazon.”
According to Noisey, this a creation of an outfit called Botnik Studios. You don’t need this. Botnik’s Jame Brew then took the resulting combination of works and sang them in the style of Morrissey/The Smiths. What we end up with is Morrissey proxy singing a review of P90X. No one does. Thanks–I think–to Fouad for the link. It works by scraping lyrics (in this case from Morrissey) as well as customer reviews of P90X, assembling them into a song.
Because it’s Monday, you meed an algorithmic mashup of Morrissey and a P90X workout

The keytar lives!

The keytar lives!
This inspired some keyboard manufacturers to come up with what was called a keytar. Read more here. Back in the 70s, musicians like Edgar Winter came up with the idea of slinging a synthesizer around their neck on a strap so they could walk around like a guitar player. There’s enough interest in the thing for Roland to introduce the AX-Edge, which looks like it could also double as an executioner’s axe.  
  To visualize things another way, the keytar concept can be described this way:

The keytar has never been much more than a curiosity, although some musicians (included Lady Gaga) still like to use one.

This new audio device could spare parents from suffering through the Frozen soundtrack forever

This new audio device could spare parents from suffering through the Frozen soundtrack forever
It’s said that two different music streams can be targeted to two different kids at the same time. Neither hears the other’s music. Meanwhile, it’s blissfully silent for mom and dad in the front. How does it work? If you’ve got kids, you’ve had to suffer through their music. The guts of the system are buried in the back of the front passenger seats. But a new invention from SEAT, part of the Volkswagen family of manufacturers. Only the person at which the beam is pointed will hear the music. No one is saying yet, but you can bet that parents with small kids are very, very interested. How many Wiggles tracks can a person handle, especially on a long journey in the car? And God forbid they discover this monstrosity in time for the next road trip. The company is testing a “dynamic focused sound system” that beams audio in a tight focus right to a passenger’s ears.   Headphones are a solution, of course, but not always practical depending on the age of the child. Must they listen to the Frozen soundtrack on repeat? More at New Atlas.

2018 Polaris Music Prize Preview

2018 Polaris Music Prize Preview
Wolastoqiyik Lintuwakonawa – Jeremy Dutcher
Favourite Song: “Mehcinut“
No, I can’t pronounce this album title or understand what tenor Jeremy Dutcher is singing, but he deserves major kudos in his efforts to keep his native Wolastoq language alive. If anything, he’s raising eyebrows as “Le Francophone Bowie” (as per Noisey). I will almost assuredly be wrong, but that’s OK as it’s part of the excitement of celebrating a country whose industry is overflowing from sea to shining sea with talent. About the only thing I do know for sure is CBC Music will be broadcasting the whole shebang starting at 8 PM ET, with performances from eight of the ten shortlisters. Girls
Favourite Song: “Rage of Plastics“
Not only is U.S. Seriously, what’s not to love with them? Stream the whole thing here tonight. Wide Open – Weaves
Favourite Song: “Walkaway“
My ultimate Polaris prediction for 2018 goes deeper than having a perfect combo of a powerfully voiced, person of colour fronting them. Could the Antisocialites title have anything to do with it? Try saying that three times fast at the gala Monday night, September 17th with a few drinks in you. In Search of Lost Time – Partner
Favourite Song: “Everybody Knows“
Partner appeal to me as probably the most geetar-heavy band on this year’s shortlist, and with lead axewomen Josée Caron plus Lucy Niles, they’re definitely the most LGBTIQ-friendly artistes. Freudian – Daniel Caesar
Favourite Song: “Best Part“
Daniel Caesar made waves as one of Barack Obama’s playlist picks, but in a lot of ways he is the newest generation carrying on the lineage of Toronto soul fused with city-smooth R&B – You see, the 6ix is more than just Drake and The Weeknd! The Average Savage – Snotty Nose Rez Kids
Favourite Song: “Broke Boy Ambitions“
Sorry for the lazy pun, but Young D and Yung Trybez are so not your average savages, delivering hip hop rhymes with profound meaning, choosing to take up beef with entities such as the government rather than trivially dissing other rappers. Regardless, they’ll be plenty of plimsoll-wearing punks rooting for them! What surprises are in store for the 2018 edition? So without any further ado…

MAKANDA at the End of Space, the Beginning of Time – Pierre Kwenders
Favourite Song: “Sexus Plexus Nexus“
OK, I’ll say it: I hope the people behind Polaris Prize never lean far enough to the right or some conservative way of thinking that would prevent someone such as Pierre Kwenders from continuing to create art here with a worldly appeal. That is when the thirteenth annual Polaris Music Prize will be awarded, the highest honour a Canadian album can achieve on artistic merit alone. Petty details such as genre, sales, and which label artists are with all go out the window of The Carlu in Toronto as eleven grand jury members decide the fate of who will take home an oversized novelty cheque for a very real $50,000. Yes there are still many, many problems, but the Polaris Music Prize has done a good job of at least attempting to address issues of things such as representation. Weaves also happen to have amazing songs on an all-around solid album that are best experienced live. No English didn’t seem to hurt 2017 winner Lido Pimienta. In a Poem Unlimited – U.S. Darlène – Hubert Lenoir
Favourite Song: “Fille de personne II“
There hasn’t been a Québécois Polaris winner since Karkwa’s surprising upset eight long years ago, but Hubert Lenoir may just change his province’s fortunes. Dans ma main – Jean-Michel Blais
Favourite Song: “outsiders“
Jean-Michel Blais embodies what’s great about Polaris Prize – a French titled, classical piano-meets-textured-electronica album that will never get played on commercial radio but has as good a chance of any to be crowned the country’s best. Girls the brainchild of Torontonian via Chicago Meghan Remy, her music has only gotten better since being cosigned by the one and only Iggy Pop the last time an album of hers was up for Polaris Prize consideration. Antisocialities – Alvvays
Favourite Song: “Plimsoll Punks“
Alvvays didn’t seem to set the indie world on fire in the same manner as their 2014 self-titled debut. This year’s competition in all honesty is anyone’s guess, so I thought I would make some educated prognostications on behalf of former Polaris panelist Alan Cross’ Journal of Musical Things – Please note they do not represent his personal opinion, that and he’s too afraid to lay a wager with yours truly!

Weekly Survey: The shirt-to-show controversy. This is FAR more contentious than I realized.

We almost sent her home to change. Two of us looked in horror at the third member of our party who showed up wearing an old concert t-shirt from the band we were about to see that night. When polled about the shirt-to-show situation, opinion was pretty much straight down the middle. Last month, I met up with a couple of friends for dinner before a gig. Nothing was settled. “You cannot do that. With neither wanting to back down, other patrons of the restaurant were drawn into the discussion. This is a question for the ages. The offender protested, of course. You can’t just go into your closet, pull out an old t-shirt from the band and then wear it to the gig. “Shirt-to-show!” screamed one of us (not me). Please weigh in. “There’s nothing wrong with wearing a favourite band t-shirt to the show by that band,” she sniffed, “It’s showing appreciation and devotion.”
The conversation soon devolved into something rather unseemly, attracting the attention of other diners. I therefore bring the argument to you. Or should such a practice be shamed out of existence? Is shirt-to-show acceptable? HIGHLY uncool.”
I had to agree.
Weekly Survey: The shirt-to-show controversy. This is FAR more contentious than I realized.