bradley's almanac - a boston-based music blog
navigate the 'nac
almanac mp3 archives almanac shared mp3 archive
live show photo archive boston-area live shots on flickr
'my life or some dream'
original mp3 compilation

free mp3 compilation on club fub
bands i've been in bands i've played drums in
the 'nac faq & contact info
contact info and more
the 'nac on the 'net
the almanac rss feed
subscribe to my rss feed
follow me on twitter the almanac twitter account
become a fan on facebook the 'nac on facebook
the almanac tumblr page bradley's tumblanac
hype machine 'nac page the almanac hype machine page
the almanac soundcloud page the almanac shuffler page
the 'nac songkick gig page the almanac songkick gig page
almanac events on sponty the almanac sponty events page
the almanac page the almanac page
listen to 'nac mp3s on shuffler the almanac shuffler page

the almanac archives

search the 'nac

recommended boston area events

tuesday, december 4th

kelly hogan

@ johnny d's

thursday, december 6th

conor oberst

@ converse hall, tremont st.

thursday, december 6th

jason isbell &

the 400 unit

@ the sinclair

friday, december 7th

the weisstronauts 14th

annual holiday jubilee

with guests tsunami of sound

preacher jack, & the derangers

@ the midway cafe, jp

friday, december 7th


moving mountains


@ the sinclair

saturday, december 8th

patrick watson

@ the sinclair

saturday, december 8th

the faint perform

"danse macabre"


icky blossoms

@ the paradise

sunday, december 9th

band of horses

@ house of blues

sunday, december 9th



@ the paradise

wednesday, december 12th

concrete blonde

jim bianco

@ the sinclair

thursday, december 13th

annual boston christmas cavalcade

benefit for the homeless

featuring tons of artists

(see fb event for details)

@ johnny d's

thursday, december 13th

nada surf

eternal summers

@ the paradise

thursday, december 13th

mates of state

in the valley below

@ brighton music hall

friday, december 14th

forgetters (blake from

jawbreaker's band)

& more tba

@ democracy center, harvard square

sunday, december 30th

sufjan stevens

sheila saputo

@ the royale

monday, december 31st

my morning jacket

@ agganis arena

monday, december 31st

deer tick

two gallants

@ the sinclair

monday, january 7th


@ the paradise

tuesday, january 8th


@ great scott

saturday, january 19th

mission of burma

@ the sinclair

sunday, january 20th

camper van beethoven


@ the middle east down

sunday, january 20th


@ the orpheum

sunday, january 20th

ra ra riot

@ the paradise

sunday, january 27th


@ great scott

tuesday, january 29th

kathleen edwards

sera cahoone

@ brighton music hall

wednesday, february 13th

yo la tengo

@ the paradise

saturday, march 2nd

unknown mortal orchestra

@ brighton music hall

tuesday, march 12th

tame impala

@ house of blues

thursday, march 14th

jukebox the ghost

matt pond pa

lighthouse and the whaler

@ brighton music hall

tuesday, march 26th

yo la tengo

@ the paradise

wednesday & thursday

april 3rd & 4th

they might be giants

@ the paradise

visit tourfilter for more shows

Monday, October 16, 2006

Mp3s: Portastatic live in Boston

As much as I love Superchunk, I've often found myself making a more emotional connection to the songs of Mac McCaughan's other (don't call it a side-) project, Portastatic. What started out as his lower-fi solo outlet has transformed itself into a full-on live entity over the years, and while the band occasionally flirts with the near-punk of the loudest 'Chunk, they're also able to incorporate that softer side with ease. We saw both facets this past Friday night when Mac brought the current lineup to town for a set at Great Scott.


Live at Great Scott in Allston, MA
Thursday, October 12th, 2006

01. Sour Shores
(not shared for techy reasons, see below)
02. Truckstop Cassettes
03. Through With People
04. You Blanks
05. Oh Come Down
06. Drill Me
07. Sweetness and Light
08. Polaroid
09. Like A Pearl
10. Spying on the Spys
11. I'm In Love (with Arthur Dove)
12. Noisy Night

13. Bye Bye Pride (Go-Betweens cover)
14. San Andreas
15. I'm Not Sayin' (Gordon Lightfoot via Nico cover)
16. I Wanna Know Girls

Joining Mac on stage was 'new guy' Jeff Clark on 2nd guitar, bass player Aaron Oliva, Matt McCaughan on drums, and Margaret White on keys, violin, backing vocals, and other various noise-making things. We also got a guest appearance from an audience volunteer for some extra nut-shaking percussion on "Sweetness and Light". Well played, random stranger. I hope you find this here recording, and if you do, say hello in the comments. I've got a photo for ya.

Personal highlights? It's hard not to lean towards the old stuff I first connected with ("San Andreas", "Oh Come Down"), but I was equally enamored with the moving "Like A Pearl" off the latest record, "Be Still Please", which came out this past Tuesday. It was also a total treat to get a Go-Betweens cover, and Mac & Margaret's beautiful version of "Bye Bye Pride" made me miss Grant McLennan a little bit more.

I'm mighty glad I ordered "Be Still Please" early and straight from the label, as not only did I score the bonus disc of demos and unreleased tracks, "Some Small Things You Can't Defend" (which you can also pick up at shows), but was surprised with the spiffy set of four Portastatic coasters, which were nice enough that I'd have bought 'em anyway. Thanks very much, Merge. I've already used one underneath my new Rose Melberg coffee mug.

This was the second night of an in-progress headlining tour that has just four more East Coast dates left, and if you're lucky one is near you. Arrive early for tour-support Jennifer O'Connor and her NYC-based band (also featuring Margaret White), whose recordings I'd not yet heard, but impressed me enough live to fix that immediately. And if you miss Portastatic this time around, fear not: They'll be back out in November for a few more dates.

A few Portastatic links...
  • Mac's been keeping a little tour diary on his blog, so have a look. (and sorry the monitor sound in Boston wasn't up to snuff, it sounded ace out front). Jennifer O'Connor stopped by the site to share some words as well, with a promise for more.

  • Baby, You Got A Stew Goin' wrote up the Mercury Lounge stop in NYC, which Mac called "the best of the tour so far...GREAT crowd, good times".

  • The live "Sour Shores" didn't rate sharing up (there was a massive crackle during a chunk of the song that is just brutal on the ol' eardrums), so console yourself by listening to the studio version:

    Mp3: Portastatic - "Sour Shores"

  • There's also a digital-only "Sour Shores" EP that you can grab over at Merge. And don't forget, you can stream the entirety of "Be Still Please" (as well as some other fine Merge releases) from links on their main page.

  • While you're at it, snag the album version of the set-closer...

    Mp3: Portastatic - "I Wanna Know Girls"

  • More? There's a couple live radio recordings and unreleased live tracks on their sounds page.

  • the fine print... If anyone has an issue with this live set being made available, just say the word (email link on left). Recorded with a Sony ECM-719 mic and a Sony MZ-RH10 minidisc, converted to .wav and then edited to 192kbps mp3s. Mp3s are made available for a limited time, and are not reposted once removed.


    featured mp3 download
    neil halstead
    live in cambridge, ma
    on november 14th, 2008
    previously: joy formidable - boston 2011

    recent posts on the 'nac...

    on the nightstand

    boston-area music bloggers

    boston music media

    I Buy Music

    This page is powered by Blogger Pro.