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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

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Mp3s: Grand Archives in Allston, MA

Seattle-based Sub Pop signees Grand Archives are in the final week of North American tour that took them across the northern U.S. and into Canada before hitting Boston a couple weeks back. The show previous saw them in my hometown of Burlington, Vermont, making the most of a very tiny audience at Higher Ground (such is the risk of weeknight shows in college towns), so I, and they, didn't know what to expect from a Wednesday night at Allston's Great Scott. Happily, a plentiful and welcoming crowd filled the place, and infectious openers You Can Be A Wesley even got some of 'em in a dancing mood. I could tell that YCBAW brought lots of friends along, and it speaks loudly of them that they not only all hung around, but appeared to love every minute of the headliners' set.

I'll admit that I hadn't spent much time with Grand Archives self-titled, February-released debut (aside from picking a couple stand-out tracks for my last River Gods DJ set), but if I had, my presence at the show wouldn't have been in question. To say I'm glad I made it out is an understatement, as their layered, laid back, harmony-fueled set of pop-rock will probably end up on my year-end best-of-shows list. And I'm not alone... I've talked to more than a couple people since who say the same, and the smiles and gratitude from the stage makes me think it might end up on the band's own list as well.

The only real bummer of the evening was the absence of tourmate (and labelmate) Sera Cahoone and her band, who had to cancel when Sera came down with a nasty case of laryngitis the day before. Fortunately for NYC, she rested up after skipping Boston and Philly and was able to play down there a few days later.

For the uninitiated, Sera and Grand Archives frontman Mat Brooke were bandmates in Carissa's Weird with Ben Bridwell, and all three went on to start Band of Horses (Sera drummed and Mat played guitar on BoH's debut disc). Sera moved on to her solo project as Mat started up Grand Archives, and the whole fam damily wound up on Sub Pop. Got it? Good.

Here's the full Grand Archives Great Scott set, shared with Mat Brooke's blessing, which includes a couple fun covers and new songs, too. Enjoy...

Some Grand Archives links...
  • Their official site, MySpace page, Wikipedia entry, and Sub Pop label page.

  • Additional Audio: Sub Pop has shared Mp3s for two songs from the GA album:
    Mp3: Grand Archives - "Torn Blue Foam Couch"
    Mp3: Grand Archives - "Miniature Birds"
  • Photos: My Flickr-hosted shots are here. Prefix has lots of photos from the June 13th Bowery Ballroom show. Check out the full Grand Archives tag search, or the band's own photo collection on MySpace.

  • Video: The band made a video for the track "Miniature Birds" (.mov / youtube), and performed the song live in 107.7 The End's studio. One of the new songs above is "Liberty Bell", and you can watch a live performance of that here. Their network TV debut came in April on Craig Ferguson's Late Late Show, where they performed "Torn Blue Foam Couch". For more, try a full Grand Archives YouTube search.

  • Sound Bites was at, and wrote about, the GA Bowery Ballroom show a couple days later.

  • Upcoming tourdates: Just a handful of shows left on this tour, then a couple weeks off before the band plays the big Sub Pop 20th Anniversary Festival in mid-July...
    June, 24 2008 @ Santa Fe Brewing Co. in Albuquerque, NM
    June, 25 2008 @ Plush in Tuscon, AZ
    June, 26 2008 @ Casbah in San Diego, CA
    June, 27 2008 @ The Echo in Los Angeles, CA
    June, 28 2008 @ Slim's in San Francisco, CA
    July, 13 2008 @ SP20 Anniversary Fest at Marymoor Park, WA
  • Listen to any and all 'Nac-hosted Mp3s at the Hype Machine.

  • the fine print... If anyone has an issue with these Mp3s being made available, just let me know (my contact info in the 'nac faq). Live sets recorded with a Sony ECM-719 mic and a Sony MZ-RH10 minidisc, converted to .wav and then edited to 192kbps Mp3s. Files 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

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