REVIEW: Wilco – “Star Wars” (2015)

Wilco Star Wars

Over the weekend, Wilco surprised everyone when they released a new album as a free download. And after a few listens, I have come to the conclusion that “Star Wars” is ultimately an anomaly in the band’s catalogue. The record’s unconventional release aside, the record comes off as one of their weaker works. But considering a band like Wilco, that doesn’t mean that it’s bad in any way… in fact I absolutely loved the record.

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Documentary about Sonic Youth’s Lee Ranaldo to Be Released This Year

Lee Ranaldo

 

Lee Ranaldo is perhaps one of the most underrated guitarists around and is certainly one of the architects of Sonic Youth’s sound. So it comes as no surprise when it was revealed that Ranaldo will be the subject of a new Arnaud Maguet-directed documentary called “In Doubt, Shadow Him!” which will be released on December. The documentary (or “drift”, as Maguet calls it) will be released as a DVD and will be accompanied by a double 10” vinyl soundtrack. The soundtrack for the film was made by Ranaldo himself as well as Hifiklub, an experimental rock quartet that features Maguet.

Maguet previously made the films “I Am a Genius (And There’s Nothing I Can Do About It)” which is a documentary about outsider musician R. Stevie Moore, as well as “Plans Make Gods Laugh (A Drift About Alain Johannes)” which focused on multi-instrumentalist Alain Johannes.

You can watch the trailer for “In Doubt, Shadow Him!” below.
 

Public Enemy Announce New Album, “Man Plans God Laughs”

Public Enemy

Hip-hop legends Public Enemy have announced that they’ll be coming out with a new record called “Man Plans God Laughs”. The new record will be released on July 25 on CD and vinyl as well as digitally in the group’s online store, Rap Central Station. “Man Plans God Laughs” is the group’s 15th studio album. In an interview with Maxim magazine, Chuck D said that he was inspired to make the record after the success of the groundbreaking albums released by Kendrick Lamar, Run the Jewels, and Kanye West.

A statement released by a spokesperson of the group says:

Man Plans, God Laughs was created as a reminder that, according to Chuck D, ‘once we win one victory, another battle develops’.

The album is driven by anthems that echo Public Enemy’s longstanding calls to break down institutional blockades and stand up for the rights of the oppressed, imploring listeners to ‘Give Peace A Damn’ while name checking Charles Mingus, work together as one in ‘Earthizen’ (with a bit of brilliant wordplay, declaring ‘The earth without art is just, eh’) and see each other as one on ‘Me To We’ (featuring turntable scratching from the group’s original DJ, Terminator X).

Chuck D’s lyrics blend powerfully with the raw poetry of longtime S1W James Bomb who recounts the group’s emotional journey to South Africa on ‘Mine Again’, one of the most moving tracks on MPGL.

Public Enemy also released a video for the album’s title track, which you can watch below.

Two Nights of Exciting Live Music: Vandals On The Wall Turns “2”

Official Poster

There’s nothing more satisfying than throwing a kickass party.

Vandals On The Wall, an online publication that takes pride in providing curated coverage of the Filipino independent and mainstream releases, turns 2 this week. To celebrate its second anniversary, the website will be teaming up with Gabi Na Naman Productions and Revolver for 2 consecutive nights of exciting music performances, booze and grub, and fun activities.

Leave your worries at home for a moment and catch your favorite homegrown acts at Route 196 (July 17, Friday) and Saguijo (July 18, Saturday). Be part of this celebration that champions boundary-pushing artistry like no other.

The first leg features an expertly curated list of performers from different music genres and forms: electronic music (Skymarines, Tandems’91), hip-hop (Assembly Generals), indie rock (Flying Ipis, Autotelic), post-rock (Earthmover) and soul/jazz (Farewell Fair Weather). Route 196 will host the kick-off gig on July 17, 2015 (Friday).

The second and final leg—a Manila Sound tribute gig with music acts such as Prank Sinatra, Oh Flamingo, Thyro and Yumi, Hannah+Gabi, Halik Ni Gringo, The SunManager, The Purplechickens and Chillitees reimagining classic OPM tunes from the ‘70s and ‘80s, will take place at Saguijo Café and Bar on July 18, 2015 (Saturday). The music acts will be covering timeless hits by Hotdog, Rico J. Puno, VST and Company, Hagibis, Sampaguita, Rey Valera, Joey Albert, Jose Mari Chan, Randy Santiago, Sharon Cuneta, and a lot more.

Aside from the much-awaited performances, Vandals On The Wall will give away limited physical copies of Crush Songs—a downloadable mixtape to be released for free download on July 20, Monday.

Also up for raffle is a Motorino player and a Fresh Filter compilation vinyl courtesy of Satchmi, and special loots from our sponsors: Bratpack, Jack Daniel’s Philippines, Identity Design, Germano’s Chilli, and Vibora Philippines.

The website’s second anniversary is supported by media partners: Bandwagon Philippines, Pinoytuner, DIG Radio, Amplify.ph, NDFY.me, Radio Republic, Splintr.com, Gist.ph, and Jam 88.3’s Fresh Filter.

Destroyer Releases Melancholic Video for “Girl in a Sling”

Destroyer

Dan Bejar, who makes music under the moniker Destroyer, makes beautifully orchestrated pop songs that are reminiscent of some of David Bowie’s best work. With several albums under his belt already, he’s gearing up for the release of his latest record. “Poison Season” will not be coming out until August, but he has already released the single “Dream Lover”. He has followed it up with the gloomy video for “Girl in a Sling”. The video was directed by David Galloway and features shots of Bejar singing in a darkroom interspersed with footage of derelict houses.

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