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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

Monday, June 11, 2012

[Live MP3s] Stinson, Death Cab, & Roderick cover Big Star, VU, & NMH

In the half-assed juggling act that is my life, the blogging-ball continues to hit the floor. Here's where I pick it up for a second, sharing a trio of cover songs from shows I've seen over the past couple months.

Back on April 21st (aka Record Store Day, for us who mark it), ex-Replacements and current (Axl-free) Gn'R bassist Tommy Stinson rode in a family-filled van from his upstate NY home to the Norwood, MA location of Newbury Comics for an acoustic in-store. He treated an appreciative crowd to a short set, accompanied by his wife Emily Roberts on harmonies & tambourine and his uncle-in-law Sippy on slide, which included this Big Star cover...

My RSD haul was relatively small this year - the Richard Thompson 7-inch (I can't resist a live version of "1952 Vincent Black Lightning", one of the best songs ever written), the Now Now / The Lonely Forest split 7-inch, and the new (although non-RSD) double-album from The Figgs. Quality, not quantity, people. You can find more photos of Tommy's appearance over here.

That same night, Death Cab For Cutie played Boston's Wang/Citi Center, backed by the simply stunning sounds of San Francisco's Magik*Magik Orchestra. I've always been a sucker for strings, and hearing some of DCFC's best work ("Cath", "What Sarah Said", "Title & Registration", "A Movie Script Ending") with those gorgeous arrangements was at times transcendent. For a few songs after the main set, it was just the foursome, on acoustics and stripped-down drums, and they gave us a nice surprise - their take on a classic Velvet Underground & Nico number (which is, incidentally, the very first cover my very first band ever learned)...

The rest of my photos from the show, such as they are, right here.

Far more recently, I caught John Roderick's (inevitably) too-short opening set for Jonathan Coulton at the Paradise a couple weeks ago. It's been 5 years since J Ro's last visit (and, um, 6 years since the last Long Winters album... but let's not get into that), but I'll take what I can get. Even a small fix is a welcome fix. A handful of Long Winters' classics, a "new" song (which means it was written in the past, yeah, 6 YEARS), and this reverent Neutral Milk Hotel cover. If you'd asked me before if I ever needed to hear someone cover this song again, I'd have said no. Then I heard Sir Roderick do this...

More shots from his set can be found right over here.

(And I apologize retroactively for referring to him "J. Ro". It's totally KB's fault.)

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

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