Hear Here–Blitzen Trapper ‘American Goldwing’

Back in the early nineties, when grunge was giving way to alternative and indie rock, I hung out with exactly two people who openly admitted to being fans of the Grateful Dead. One was an unapologetic lover of hippie culture who often said things like “right on,” played hacky sack, and smoked massive amounts of weed. The other was a skater dude who also turned me on to Minor Threat, and his openness to genres of music far outside the punk spectrum was one of the most punk things about him. Anyway, the point is that The Dead, at that point, had become so inextricably associated with the image of a tie-dyed t-shirt wearing, free-loving caricature of a bygone era that admitting a fondness for the band’s music was generally considered somewhat less than cool. These days the truth is quite the opposite, and it seems it has become cool once again to love The Dead, and that’s all right with me, especially when such love results in albums like American Goldwing, the latest from Portland’s Blitzen Trapper. It’s an album that revels in a sort of open road Americana, loaded with acoustic guitars, harmonica, and driving melodies, and it wears its Deadhead heart on its sleeve.

American Goldwing is currently streaming in its entirety courtesy of the fine folks at Drowned In Sound. Listen here.

The album is out September 13 via Sub Pop. Check it out here.

And here’s the video for album track “Love The Way You Walk Away”…

Man/Miracle Begins US Tour Today

And from their tumblr page: here are their upcoming tour dates. The best way to support a band you like is to go see them live.

2011 US TOUR

Aug 26 – Oakland, CA @ The Uptown *
Aug 27 – Santa Cruz, CA @ The Crepe Place *
Aug 28 – San Diego, CA @ Bar Pink *
Aug 29 – Los Angeles, CA @ The Echo %
Aug 30 – Tempe, AZ @ Yucca Tap Room ()
Sept 1 – Marfa, TX @ Padre’s Marfa
Sept 2 – Austin, TX @ Mohawk
Sept 3 – New Orleans, LA @ Saturn Bar
Sept 4 – Mobile, AL @ Alabama Music Box $
Sept 6 – Athens, GA @ New Earth Music Hall
Sept 7 – Charlotte, NC @ Snug Harbor
Sept 10 – Raleigh, NC @ Tir Na Nog (Hopscotch Fest) ~
Sept 11 – Washington, DC @ DC9
Sept 12 – Philadelphia, PA @ Danger Danger Gallery
Sept 13 – Boston, MA @ TT The Bears
Sept 14 – New York, NY @ Pianos NYC
Sept 15 – Brooklyn, NY @ Glasslands Gallery ^
Sept 16 – Chicago, IL @ Hideout Inn +
Sept 17 – Minneapolis, MN @ 7th Street Entry %
Sept 19 – Omaha, NE @ The Waiting Room
Sept 20 – Denver, CO @ Larimer Lounge
Sept 21 – Provo, UT @ Muse Music Cafe
Sept 22 – Sacramento, CA @ TBA
Sept 23 – San Francisco, CA @ Bottom of the Hill !

* with Chairs Missing
% with Active Child
() with The Whisperlights
$ with Grave Babies
~ with Titus Andronicus, Beach Fossils, The Caribbean
^ with Unknown Mortal Orchestra, Woven Bones, Blouse
+ with Gypsyblood
! with The Vacant Lots (all ages show)

Hear Here–Ganglians ‘Still Living’

Light a candle and save the wax for your board, Ganglians are here to dose you up with some low-key, spooked, and harmonized hymns for your summertime surf. Ganglians’ latest, Still Living, is a double lp that keeps the psychedelia breezy and cool while allowing the band to stretch its stylistic legs a bit.

Still Living is out now via Lefse Records. Check it out here.

The album is currently streaming in its entirety via Spinner. Listen here.

Ganglians – Jungle from Pete Dee on Vimeo.

Gross Relations ‘Come Clean’

Los Grillos first encountered Gross Relations’ infectious blend of 80s synth-pop, 90s lo-fi indie rock, and timeless garage fuzz via the track “You Don’t Know Me” from the band’s debut 7″ Fuzzy Timelines at the always excellent music blog Raven Sings The Blues. Follow-up single Blame The Records proved that these boys from Brooklyn were bound for something bigger, and that thing has arrived in the form of 12″ EP Come Clean, set to hit the streets, fittingly, as the debut release from Raven Sings The Blues Records. Come Clean builds on Gross Relations’ penchant for writing melodies that go down like shots of warm whiskey–as rough and raw as they are smooth and addictive. After one, you’re pretty much ready for another.

Come Clean is out September 13 via Raven Sings The Blues Records. Pre-orders (free 7″ while supplies last!) are available now via Insound.

When You Go Down by RavenSingstheBlues

Gardens: a Short Imagined Dialogue between Iggy Pop and Lou Reed

Somewhere in New York:

Iggy :  Hey, Lou.

Lou:  IGGY! How are you?

Iggy: Ok.  Hey, Lou, do you remember the days when we were still using —  back in the 70’s?

Lou: Remember would be putting it loosely.

Iggy:  You know what I mean!  When we were part of the scene and we couldn’t remember who we slept with or what day it was.

Lou: Speak for yourself, stooge.

Iggy:[Staring daggers]  …Yeah, I forgot you probably kept some pathetic journal or something.

[Lou blinks a few times at Iggy over his wire rimmed spectacles.]

Lou:  It was great seeing you Iggy. I got to go.

Iggy:  No, wait!  There’s this band … you got to hear them. They’ll take you back to the early days when what we were doing was something fresh, and who we were doing was another story altogether.

Lou: O.K., Iggy, I’ll give ’em a listen. Then let’s call David and see if he can’t meet us at the Chelsea for a few drinks. Shall we?

Iggy: ??

Gardens – Maze Time by alivenaturalsound

Buy it at the Alive Natural Sound webstore.