The week began for us Northwesters with some great news -- Sufjan Stevens would focus on our southern neighbors, the pioneer friendly state of Oregon, for his next album -- but unfortunately, that turned out to be a hoax. Gorilla Vs. Bear spotted the “exclusive” news on Soof’s Pure Volume page, and wisely warned that the preview track “Portland, or Whistling Underwater” might be a trick. As you can read from this screen capture, the new material is said to “let all of his influences shine through, from straight-up nasty noise rock,” referring to his recent rock rendition for The Believer‘s Music Issue, “to glitchridden electronica to modern classical.” While the new song on Pure Volume has a bit of all that, it doesn’t sound a whole lot like him. If you check the page now, you’ll find this statement by Asmatic Kitty: “The advance information and early demo of ‘Portland’ were the work of an unsavory intern, and we regret that they must be taken down at this time. However, final versions of both will be appearing soon.” But the song is still there! Go take a listen and decide for yourself -- unsavory intern or tasty surprise?
Here’s what else is going on in music news:
Thurston Moore revealed to Pitchfork that Sonic Youth will record a new song for a Starbucks compilation. Apparently, Moore and the band asked a group of other musicians, artists, and actors to choose their favorite Sonic Youth songs. This celebrity fan-chosen collection will feature this new song as an exclusive addition.
Moore then mentioned how he’d like to create a Starbucks mixtape (which I’m sure is already in discussion at Starbucks’ HQ), and added “it’s so funny, because Starbucks is the new record store, right?” Didn’t I say there would be a Starbucks opening around the corner of your favorite independent record store?
The Go! Team have signed to local label Sub Pop for their American distribution and will release their sophomore album Proof of Youth on September 11. Sub Pop A&R rep Susan Busch tells CMJ: “We are thrilled to welcome the Go! Team to Sub Pop. They add yet another sound to our label that is nothing like anything else we have on the roster but at the same time they’re a perfect fit. I am sure the release of Proof Of Youth will bring many exciting opportunites for the band as well as the label.” Here’s the video to the first single, “Grip Like A Vice,” due for release on July 2:
While you’re not likely to see a Smiths reunion, you will get to see Inside The Smiths. According to NME, the band approved documentary features exclusive footage and interviews with fellow luminaries Mark E. Smith (The Fall), Peter Hook (New Order), and Pete Shelley (Buzzcocks). While Morrissey and Marr are busy with their current projects, Andy Rourke and Mick Joyce will screen the DVD in London in July.
Issue 80 unfortunately marks the end of a 13 year run for Punk Planet magazine. Many factors led to the influential rag’s demise -- internet “journalism,” corporate media, bad distribution deals, disappearing advertisers and readers -- but the publisher acknowledges that “great things end, and the best things end far too quickly.” On the bright side, the “books line will continue to publish, and the website will continue to be a social networking site for independently minded folk.” You fought the good fight, Punk Planet. We’ll miss you.
The Cribs announced a U.S. tour, which includes a stop at the Capitol Hill Block Party on July 28. Check Rock Sellout for the other dates. Also revealed, quite literally, is the uncensored version of “Men’s Needs,” featuring full-frontal decapitation. The censored version is easily accessible on YouTube (but you might have to look harder to find the version with the naughty bits).
Portland band Menomena has just released their latest video. Check out “Rotten Hell” -- food fight!