Wednesday Music News

photo by Matthew B. Thompson (view set)

    • PJ Harvey has released a new single with Eyptian artist Ramy Essam called “The Camp,” along with a video that includes images by photojournalist Giles Duley of displaced children in Lebanon. They hope the song and video will raise awareness and much needed support towards the health and educational well-being of displaced children in the Bekaa Valley of Lebanon. The artists will donate all net profits from the track to Beyond Association in the Bekaa Valley, a national Lebanese non-Governmental Organisation. In a press release, Duley said: “It is hard to comprehend the scale of the crisis in Lebanon, a country of 4 million now hosting over 1 million Syrian refugees. The infrastructure of the country is pushed to its limit, and nowhere is that situation more desperate than in the Bekaa Valley. However, there are some amazing organisations doing incredible, effective, and selfless work on the ground there, and of all the NGOs I have documented, none have impressed me more than Beyond. To visit their schools and witness their programs is to see hope – and that is something we have to support.” [ Pitchfork ]
    • Last month Mogwai gave us their first single in three years, “Coolverine,” the lead single off the new album Every Country’s Sun and now they have graciously provided an accompanying video for the track that’s a must-see. Directed by Hand Held Cine Club, the slow-motion, black-and-white clip, alternates between one man’s enraged screaming and shots of people and objects (chess pieces, coffee cups, cars) drifting into the sky. It’s a slow-burner like the track it accompanies and makes the anticipation for their new album all the greater. Mogwai will be in Seattle on Friday, November 24th at the Showbox. [ Stereogum ]
    • Thee Oh Sees have made a major announcement today. Actually a few, but the first is the most surprising. After over 20 years as Thee Oh Sees they are now changing their name to simply Oh Sees. It’s interesting and we’re curious about the reasoning but we’re excited about the next piece of news: there’s a new album! Titled Orc, it will follow up last year’s A Weird Exit. A press release says the record is “More evil … more complex, more narcotic, more screech, more roar, more whisper, there’s even more Brigid Dawson.” (Dawson has long provided keyboards and backing vocals for the band, often helping Dwyer craft his melodies.) They’ve also shared the lead single off the new album, “The Static God.” Catch the newly-rebranded band at Neumos on Saturday, September 23rd. [ Consequence of Sound ]
    • Watch out world, there’s a brand new Kurt and Courtney combining forces. But don’t worry this iteration is far more chill. Courtney Barnett and Kurt Vile have teamed up to make a collaborative album and are planning on touring together in support of the record this year. It’s a combination that makes sense, both write music that’s literate, wry, and lackadaisical. On tour, they’ll be backed by an all-star band they’re calling The Sea Lice, featuring the great Janet Weiss of Sleater-Kinney (and Wild Flag and the Jicks) on drums, Stella Mozgawa of Warpaint, Rob Laasko of the Vile’s band the Violators, and Katie Harkin of Sky Larkin. They’ll be traveling through the U.S. starting with San Diego in October. According to the tour poster, their Seattle stop will on October 21st at the Moore. [ Spin ]
    • Seattle’s Fleet Foxes have shared another song from their upcoming album Crack-Up. This one is the short by sweet “If You Need To, Keep Time on Me” and follows “Third of May/Odaigahara” and “Fool’s Errand.” Crack-Up will stream in its entirety tomorrow on NPR First Listen and will be officially released June 16th via Nonesuch. Crack-Up is the band’s third album, the long-awaited follow-up to 2011’s Helplessness Blues. Frontman Robin Pecknold wrote all of the album’s 11 songs and co-produced it with his bandmate (and childhood friend) Skyler Skjelset. Fleet Foxes are playing a two-night stint at the Paramount on Thursday, September 14th and Friday, September 15th. [ Under the Radar ]
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