Thursday News Roundup

Best Coast, photo by Alex Crick

  • Canada’s premier music festival Pop Montreal is celebrating its 10th year in the circuit, and included in this year’s gift bag is Arcade Fire, performing an entirely free, outdoor show Thursday, September 22nd at the place des Festivals of Quartier des Spectacles in downtown Montreal. The show is a gleeful “thank you” by Arcade Fire to Montreal, Quebec, and Canada, in celebration of the band’s past year international touring and accolades (The Brits, Grammys, Junos). The event will be opened by another Montreal band, 2010 Polaris Prize winners Karkwa.
  • Great news for fans of Carissa’s Wierd, the seminal Northwest group that spawned Band of Horses (Ben Bridwell), Grand Archives, and solo projects from Jenn Ghetto (S) and Sera Cahoone, will put out their first new material in over seven years. Next month, Seattle label Hardly Art will release a 7″ of the song “Tucson” and right now they’ve made the b-side, “Meredith & Iris,” available for you to listen to right now:

  • Earlier this week, Washington D.C.’s 9:30 club hosted Bon Iver, complete with nine-person band, in a live performance. NPR caught the whole thing, and it’s available to listen to over on their website. The gig was recorded August 2nd, and was the second of two sold-out performances. Highlights include: Iver covering Bjork‘s “Who Is It”; an acoustic version of “Flume” (rare, with the band’s current lineup); and the finale, where fan favorite “Skinny Love” morphed into lounge-tastic Bon Iver, Bon Iver closer “Beth/Rest.”
  • The Shins have lain dormant since ’07′s Wincing the Night, and though frontman James Mercer has kept himself busy with Broken Bells, it looks like he’s set to return to his old moniker. An as-yet untitled new album is reportedly in the works, to release next year, and in the meantime Mercer’s touring as The Shins for a short run of dates that’ll lead him through Oregon and San Francisco (what, no Seattle love?).
  • Seattle fans of Bethany Cosentino’s Best Coast may have gotten their fill of her sunny surf-pop jams at this year’s Capitol Hill Block Party, but for any die-hards who are always looking for more, Cosentino recently took to her band’s website to drop a new demo, hinting that it’s “a small taste of what’s to come.” The song, entitled “How They Want Me To Be,” is a wistful slow-burner, epitomized by extra lo-fi production. Check it out here, and listen to Best Coast’s Capitol Hill Block Party set, live from the Main Stage.
  • Yesterday, precocious indie darling Zooey Deschanel announced via Twitter plans for a She & Him holiday album, due out later this year. This news follows the (obviously misguided) rumors that Him-half of the duo M. Ward was going completely solo (although a new M. Ward solo album is in the works). Other than Zooey’s Tweet, there is no further news about the album. Though, it’s doubtful anything will ever top Low‘s Christmas.
  • It seems all that hanging out with The Flaming Lips rubbed off on him: Neon Indian‘s new album Era Extra├▒a hits shelves September 13th, and if you’re so inclined, you can head on over his site and pre-order the deluxe package, which includes the album on CD and vinyl, a T-shirt, a poster, and - here it comes - a mini analog synthesizer. The synth, coined PAL198X, is a miniature edition of creator Bleep Labs‘ PicoPaso analog synth, with some modifications and tweaks. Check out Palomo demoing the device below:

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