Last year, America’s obsession with dancehall reached critical mass with Drake’s smash hit “One Dance”. In the months that followed, its influence was all but inescapable in mainstream rap and pop, but never in my wildest dreams did i imagine it would make its way to The Shins. The singles leading up to their new album Heartworms have thus far stayed true to form for the band, but on new cut “Painting a Hole,” they employ a slowed-down take on the dancehall groove to bizarre effect. What’s even more bizarre is that it actually kind of works. Stream the track below. Continue reading →
Fleetwood Mac is celebrating the 30th anniversary of their album Tango in the Night that will include never-before-heard song demos like the previously unreleased tune “Where We Belong.” The song surfaced on Soundcloud this week, and you can hear it below. Continue reading →
James Mercer’s beloved indie pop outfit The Shins returns this year with their first album since 2012’s Port of Morrow. Heartworms is out March 10th on Aural Apothocary / Columbia Records, and the band today just shared its second single, following the Halloween-centered “Dead Alive.”
The new “Name For You” is a shimmering nugget of pop perfection in three minutes and change — a bouncing beat, radiant synthesizers and Mercer’s stratospheric voice delivering the hook. Give it a listen below, and check out the band’s 2017 tour dates so far. Continue reading →
A very special Indie Rock Hit Parade is in store for you tonight at 11pm ET on WXPN: Listen after Land of the Lost with Robert Drake for the annual Halloween edition, known as the Indie Rock HAUNT Parade! Celebrate the spirit of the season with two hours of thrilling, chilling songs from some of your favorite indie bands. Classics from Mudhoney, Neko Case and Beat Happening stand alongside new tricks and treats from The Shins, The Wytches and Shilpa Ray! Preview a few of the newer tracks below (if you dare), and don’t forget to join me on Monday night at 8 for more coffin-shakers on the XPN Halloween Spooktacular!
Dr. Dog hit the stage at the Moody Theatre in downtown Austin, Texas for the latest episode of Austin City Limits. You can watch the Philly band’s debut ACL appearance below courtesy of PBS (their set begins at 26:30 minutes into the video behind a set by The Shins). If you like what you see, download NoiseTrade’s free Dr. Dog fall sampler here.
Miike Snow is the ugly cute of electronic pop. It sounds great from far away; upon closer examination, there’s definitely something off—and yet, somehow that makes it more endearing. The trio’s 2009 self-titled debutreferenced bestiality in “Plastic Jungle”, dispelled a common misconception in “A Horse Is Not A Home,” and the chorus of “Burial” confessed to becoming a serial killer. This year’s Happy To You has been praised for sounding excellent, as could be expected from a trio in which two members are producers. Yet, the music video series that accompanies the album could not have been expected. With two videos out and more promised, the series features sets of twin girls from outer space who kidnap people and, using chain saws, surgically transform them into clones of a dancing super-human named Jean Noel. But it’s Miike Snow, so actually, this isn’t so surprising. Miike Snow performs with Penguin Prison at 8 p.m. at Electric Factory; tickets to the all-ages show are $25. —Naomi Shavin
A lot has happened in the five years since The Shins’ last album in 2007. The indie-rock band, centered on James Mercer, changed labels, lost every founding member of the band (sans Mercer), and then took a break while Mercer worked with Brian “Danger Mouse” Burton to form Broken Bells. And just when Shins fans were wondering if they’d ever see new material, Mercer returned with a new supporting band and a new album, Port Of Morrow, released last month. Morrow has a more polished sound, showing Mercer’s influence from Broken Bells, but it’s still a Shins album at heart with the jangly pop sound the band’s known for. Mercer plans to focus back on Broken Bells after the band finishes their tour, but hopefully that won’t mean another five years for the next Shins album. The Shins perform with Real Estate at 8 PM at the Tower Theatre; tickets to the all-ages show are $27.50-$45. —Nicole Soll
The Shins are playing the Tower Theatre on Thursday, May 3rd. Tickets go on sale this Friday, March 17th at Noon. Go here for tickets and more information about the show. The Shins are on the World Cafe with David Dye this Friday at 2pm. The band also performed last week at Le Possion Rouge in New York; watch the video of the show here.
Even before a single band had hit the stage, this year’s Popped! Music Festival was not off to a good start. Just a few days before the festival, organizers had to make the gut-wrenching decision to move the festival indoors due to the forecasted weather. No one can blame them for the move; they can’t control the weather and it’s certainly not their fault FDR Park wouldn’t be able to survive both the rain and thousands of people pounding its grounds. Nevertheless, no one seemed to be all that happy about the unfortunate move.
For the full review of the entire festival (including a ton of additional photos of each performing act), as well as a comprehensive calendar of upcoming shows in Philadelphia, visit The Swollen Fox. (Thanks to Kevin for sharing his photos with us.)