Music News: Thursday’s Things You Should Know About. Really.

nadasurf_live.jpg
Nada Surf live in-studio 1/30/08
photo by Christopher Nelson
  • Did you catch Nada Surf‘s lovely on-air acoustic set with Cheryl yesterday? If not, you can find it in the on-demand Streaming Archive here on KEXP.ORG. For those of you who are going a wee bit crazy waiting for Lucky, the band’s newest, to come out -- good news! The band is now streaming the entire album on the Nada Surf MySpace page.
  • Nick Cave: Songwriter. Novelist. Thespian. Renaissance man. 2007 saw the release of Cave’s heavier than heavy and delightfully bawdy Grinderman project. Everybody’s favorite black-hearted bard also fashioned a gorgeous, evocative movie score with Warren Ellis (Dirty Three, and now apparently annexed into the Bad Seeds as well) for the film The Assassination of Jesse James By The Coward Robert Ford. Talk about both ends of the spectrum! The film score hits US record shops next Tuesday. 2008 promises to bring even more Cave bounty: new album Dig, Lazarus, Dig! comes out in the UK in March via Mute Records, with an April stateside release to follow. Mute has been issuing a series of videos leading up to the release; the latest features the band in Full Seance Mode. From the looks of it, catering didn’t skimp on drinks at this film shoot! Paste has the latest in the series, titled “Is There Spirits in the Room?
  • Our interest in all things Death Cab is so rabid that sometimes it seems if they traded in their van for a newer one with low mileage, we’d stop the presses to breathlessly detail the transaction. Imagine our glee at getting a tidbit of real DCFC news from their MySpace page -- they’ve named the upcoming album Narrow Stairs.
  • Whiskeytown‘s seminal Strangers Almanac will be re-released in a two-disc, deluxe edition on March 4 by Mood Food/Outpost/Geffen/Um (whoa, a lot of fingers in that pie!) The expanded edition will be the usual drill: some previously unreleased tracks, some live cuts, and some demos. The Seattle connection, of course, is Phil Wandscher, who was Whiskeytown’s guitar slinger at the time, and has now put his unmistakeable stamp on three albums by Ballard’s own Jesse Sykes and the Sweet Hereafter. Bonus tracks include several cover songs, including Ryan Adams giving us his take on Fleetwood Mac’s “Dreams.” Adams reinvented Oasis’ “Wonderwall” to stunning effect; let’s see if he can do the same with Stevie Nicks. Wagers?
  • The Ladybug Transistor covering David Bowie’s “Life on Mars”? Now that’s one for the iPod. Thanks to You Ain’t No Picasso for the tip. Well? Go on, head over and download it! It’s band sanctioned (no guilt!)
  • EELS fans -- if you’re still digesting the band’s 50 song, two CD plus DVD package Useless Trinkets: B Sides, Soundtracks, Rarities and Unreleased: 1996-2007, don’t fret; you’re probably a little backed up from the band’s “Essential EELS” best-of, with that release’s 24 tracks and dozen videos, which also came out on January 15! Mark your calendars, though; a tour looms as well. MusicSlut has the complete tourdates, but we’ll save you some scrolling time -- the Seattle date is April 11 at the Showbox.
  • R.E.M. gets back to stripped-down, fast-paced rock on new album Accelerate, Billboard tells us, and April is when Warner releases the 11-song, 34-minute disc. (Isn’t it great to know how many minutes long an album will be, months before it comes out? Now that is some crucial inside info!) “Supernatural Superserious” will be the first single.
  • Luna/Galaxie 500/Dean and Britta fans will want to make a trip to the bookstore in March; Dean Wareham‘s memoir, Black Postcards: A Rock & Roll Romance, hits the shelves. The Onion’s A.V. Club has an interview with Wareham, where he talks about everything from the rollercoaster ride of success in the music business to more compelling subjects, such as Tony Iommi (Black Sabbath)’s finger issues, the Clash’s “meathead fans,” and why Spacemen 3 is his favorite gospel group ever.
  • Bjork didn’t punch anyone out at the airport this week, but she did take time to tell The Australian what it means to be a “2008 Person.” Which, of course, she is. “With globalization and everything, being from one country and having that particular one sound of whatever your nation represents, is not true. There’s no such thing any more. To be in the moment, to be a 2008 person, it’s more of an international affair. Especially sonically.” Sonic Internationalist, Airport Bully -- that’s our favorite Icelandic pixie!
  • Peter Moren, singer for Peter, Bjorn and John, is stepping out with a solo album in April. Titled The Last Tycoon, it features, in Moren’s words, “the usual lyrical psycho-babble, but with a direct and honest approach.” Phew -- we all know how confusing indirect pyscho-babble can be. A South by Southwest Music Festival performance is scheduled, followed by a spring tour. Bjorn and John must be absolutely seething. Careful, dudes -- this is the kind of thing that broke up Crosby, Stills and Nash!
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