Some #longreads as you settle in for the weekend…
Spoon’s Gimme Fiction will be getting the deluxe edition/re-issue treatment for its tenth anniversary this December, but you can visit the site “Gimme Facts” right now to read the oral history of the album that comes with the package. It was compiled by one of our favorite writers, Sean O’Neal (of the AV Club and others), so it should be well worth your time.
Last week, we shared a serious interview with Maynard James Keenan, and this week we have a fun one for you–read his hilarious responses to the AV Club’s “11 Questions“.
Esteemed critic Stephen Thomas Erlewine has to read a lot of rock star memoirs as a part of his job, but he makes it easy for the public by pulling out some of the best tidbits of six new autobiographies for this Vulture piece, filling you in on stories about John Fogerty, Carrie Brownstein, Elvis Costello, and others.
Finally, Esquire made Noel Gallagher their cover star for December, so of course they have an extensive interview with the man filled with his entertaining ramblings.
Some #longreads for your weekend reading pleasure…
We have now reached the point that the music press is holding celebrations for 15th anniversaries, but when it comes to albums like Radiohead’s Kid A, we do not mind indulging in that kind of silliness. Rob Sheffield has an appreciative essay of the now-legendary record for Rolling Stone and Steven Hyden of Grantland explains how years before the innovative release of In Rainbows that Radiohead was already on the cutting edge of music and technology, with the band streaming the album weeks before its physical release.
The other major topic of the week is Max Martin, one of several Scandinavian musicians who are responsible for most of the pop hits that have infiltrated the airwaves for the past fifteen years. The New Yorker looks at the man himself, The Atlantic takes a look at the pop-songwriting-manufacturing process, and Consequence of Sound takes a look at Martin’s career in a more easily digestible listicle form complete with video highlights.
While Martin may be helping to create a monopoly in some respects in the field of pop music, GarageBand has been said to have a more democratizing effect on the creation of music in general. Pitchfork has a longform piece on the effects of the software.
In other anniversary news, this week marks the twentieth anniversary of Oasis’s mammoth album (What’s the Story) Morning Glory?, and Stereogum puts the album into historical context. It has always been my preferred Oasis record, namely for the fact that it includes the shameless Beatles rip-off “Don’t Look Back In Anger”, one of my favorite songs of the 90’s. I will never forget the moment when I saw an entire crowd of people join a street musician in a London tube station sing this song, with not a single person young or old forgetting a line.
We shared with you one remembrance of Wolf Parade’s Apologies to the Queen Mary last week, and we have another piece for you on one of our favorite albums. Observer offers a behind-the-scenes look at the album, with several stories explaining the meanings and creations of each track.
As for us, we will be catching Titus Andronicus performing at Mississippi Studios tonight, and in preparation for our review you may want to check out the extensive profile of the band courtesy of SPIN.
Some #longreads for your Labor Day weekend and pieces to look over in between college football games…
As you may have noticed, we are eagerly anticipating El Pintor, the new album from Interpol. To help you feel the same excitement, we have interviews both old and new. Under the Radar posted a piece from 2002 when the band was fresh off their classic debut Turn On The Bright Lights, while Rolling Stone talks to the band as they return in 2014.
The AV Club sets their sights on The Stooges’ legendary album Raw Power for their Permanent Records feature, and that fact alone should spur you to read it. Elsewhere on the site, various writers discuss songs they love despite cringe-worthy lyrics. I personally take issue with the first selection of “Conversation 16” by The National, whose lyrics I actually enjoy–the shock that comes from the drastic change in tone quickly turns to amusement, and I always enjoy cracking up when listening to the purposefully humorous chorus.
Pitchfork has an in-depth interview with Anthony Gonzalez, the mastermind behind M83, who discusses his early years as the group’s first three albums are getting reissued. If you’re only familiar with the group because of “Midnight City” and Hurry Up, We’re Dreaming, I suggest you pick up these albums when you have the chance because they’re just as gorgeous, though with less of an 80’s influence (which to some may be preferable).
And finally, have some fun with Stereogum as they rank AC/DC’s albums and look back on the twentieth anniversary of Oasis’s Definitely Maybe. I personally was first introduced to Oasis with their follow-up (What’s the Story) Morning Glory?, but for many people their debut still represents the pinnacle of the band’s career.
We’ve got some nice, light articles for you this weekend, mirroring the gorgeous weather we’ve been experiencing this week (at least here in the Pacific Northwest).
Last week we had an article that provided some interesting trivia about Joy Division’s Unknown Pleasures, and this week we have an article about its successor band, New Order. The AVClub has an article about the single “Ceremony”, which bridged the two bands. Kevin McFarland makes a convincing case for how the song provided an effective transition between the two eras.
The Wild Magazine has an extended interview with M.I.A. that’s worth checking out. I didn’t get a chance to post anything about Matangi in the 2013 roundup, but I enjoyed the album and felt that it was a significant step up from its predecessor, MAYA. But now I have a great excuse to post the video for “Bad Girls”, because it’s pretty damn cool.
Steven Hyden listened to the new Damon Albarn solo album, and while he hasn’t completely accounted for his sin of choosing Oasis over Blur in the mid-90’s Britpop battles, he does use the occasion to ponder why there aren’t any big band beefs any more. Let’s just hope that this eventually leads to a listen of Parklife at some point.
The Flaming Lips recently fired long-time drummer Kliph Scurlock from the band, and Pitchfork has a message from Kliph that explains the situation and dynamic in the band.
And finally, great news for those of us in the Northwest, as the Nine Inch Nails/Soundgarden/Death Grips touring juggernaut announced additional dates in Sacramento, Portland (actually Clark County in Washington), and Seattle. It feels good to not dread making a trip 800 miles down I-5.