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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

Thursday, June 05, 2008

Thursday Music Miscellany

Life is blurring by lately... if you've glanced at my Flickr pics you may have noticed I've recently seen the Thalia Zedek Band, Glorytellers, Drew O'Doherty, Ida, Michael Hurley, and a lecture with writer Neil Gaiman honoring Julie Schwartz at MIT, traveled up to Vermont for some family time where I caught James Kochalka Superstar, Missy Bly, and some Koolaoke, and headed out to Newburyport for some Memorial Day in-town exploration and Plum Island beach time. Good memories all, and more ahead: This evening is the Breeders at the 'Dise (congrats to reader Courtney, who won those tickets to tonight's sold out show), next week brings the Tullycraft show with my VT-pop pals the Smittens and Pants Yell!, along with that REM / Modest Mouse / The National team-up at Great Woods, I mean The Tweeter Center, no wait it's the Comcast Center now (a show I'm still surprised to be checking out, but looking forward to). As Lili Von Shtupp sang: I'm tie-uhd. So vewwy tie-uhd.

Gonna start this short random post off with some songs I've really been digging lately...
  • My long drive back from Vermont on Sunday afternoon meant I barely had time to make that Ida / Michael Hurley show in Somerville, and also left me too wiped out to catch Atlanta's All The Saints at TTs afterwards. Damn shame, too, because the title track from their just-released debut album is truly great stuff. Hopefully they'll be back this way soon...

  • Soon after this Great Bloomers song started up, my first thought was 'what a really nice piece of melancholic piano-based pop'... until that extended intro ended, and the drums and irresistible guitar hook kicked in. 'Really nice' instantly elevated to 'great', and even higher as a layer of guitar squelch wandered in and out of focus underneath the ultra-catchy top layer (think certain Yo La Tengo songs, or early Idaho). And as someone who's not a huge harmonica fan (beyond, say, Neil Young), the GBs use it perfectly. This one's been on repeat...

  • I'm a sucker for well-used violin in my pop songs (hellooooo Dambuilders), and Baskervilles' "A Little More Time" does it just right. Add some piano and guy/girl trade-off vocals to a short-but-sweet story of waitstaff flirtation, and I'm so in. Two minutes of bouncy bliss, available as part of the just-out "Twilight", a 14-song collection (produced in part by Mitch Easter) of songs they released monthly via their website.

  • Another show I hope to catch this weekend is Somerville's own Travels, who make just their second local appearance ever on Saturday night at PA's Lounge (tough choices that night, though, what with Pela at the Middle East and Jennifer O'Connor at TTs). If you're a 'Nac regular, you know well of my Travels love, so I was glad to discover this fine footage from their trip to Vienna, where they performed a couple acoustic songs: Debut album track "There Is Movement" on an abandoned outdoor stage, and new one called "The Forgotten" on a street median. Go watch, and check out their MySpace page for new demos, including one for "The Forgotten".

    Keeping it local, there's a new Dylan In The Movies song up on MySpace featuring some backup vocals from the wonderful Watson Twins. Check out the rough mix of "Truro" here, and read about its creation here. While that one's a stream, a rough mix of "Josephine If You Only Knew" can be downloaded as an mp3. Such a good song, with some gorgeous guitar work, and hey, hand claps! Fine ingredients all. Read the background on that one here, along with a mention of DitM working with Tanya Donelly on a cover of "Love Cats" for an American Laundromat tribute to the Cure that will also feature The Wedding Present, Dean & Britta, The Raveonettes, The Rosebuds, and many others.

    Still talkin' local: Another show I had to miss due to an out of town trip: Big Dipper's reunited return to an area stage back in late April. Truly painful. But I experienced the build up thanks to "Big Dipper Week" at Things I'd Rather Be Doing, and basked in the afterglow thanks to an excellent recording of the band's Southpaw show over at NYCTaper. I shouldn't have to even say this, but: Download and listen.

    And lastly, congrats to my longtime friend (and occasional bandmate) Mike Barrett, as he and his wife Anna welcomed new son Jasper to the world a couple weeks ago. He joins his sister Leila in completing the eventual rhythm section that will back Mike on guitar and Anna on keyboards. Just give 'em a couple years...

    Mike recently shared up a live set from his band The Sixth Great Lake (featuring friends from Guppyboy and The Essex Green) over at the Tup Keewah Recordings blog, recorded back in 2001 at Amsterdam's Crossing Border Festival. Not sure when we'll see new offerings on the blog, or the in-progress next Sixth Great Lake album, but hopefully Mike will find some time in between his newly-increased dadly duties. Maybe we'll even get a second appearance from Stratford Projects? Anything's possible...

    See? I told you this one would be short. Sometimes I'm actually capable of self-control.

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

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