“The Month of May” is a standout track on Arcade Fire‘s stellar new album The Suburbs, but it ain’t got nothing on the month of August.
So far this month, the indie rock sensations have played two sold-out shows at Madison Square Garden — one of which was webcast under the direction of film auteur/Monty Python alum Terry Gilliam — and their performance at last weekend’s Lollapalooza was the festival’s most talked-about event (ok, second most talked-about). Oh, and did I mention that The Suburbs just beat out some guy named Eminem for the best-selling album in America?
Not too shabby, and the month isn’t even halfway over yet. To keep the awesomeness going for the rest of August, our friends over at Merge Records are giving away a copy of The Suburbs to one lucky Owl and Bear reader. And this isn’t some CD or 8-track or whatever format you kids listen to nowadays — this is a freshly pressed double-LP of pure vinyl goodness. Top that, Slim Shady.
For your chance to win Arcade Fire’s The Suburbs on vinyl, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org with “Arcade Fire Contest” in the subject line and your name and mailing address in the body. The winner will be selected at random on August 30th.
Merge has put up a fresh sampler for free download at the Amazon MP3 store, and it has a great selection of tracks. According to Merge,
Spring has sprung and it is time for a new free Merge sampler! Visit Amazon.com now to download fourteen free songs from the latest albums by Radar Brothers, Spoon, Let’s Wrestle, She & Him and more. The sampler features special cover art by Let’s Wrestle’s Wesley Patrick Gonzalez.
In 2009, The Love Language released their brilliant self-titled debut. It went largely overlooked.
I take some pleasure in loving an under-appreciated band — a secret treasure that you don’t want to share, for fear that its meaning might be taken away from you. They’re bands that teeter on the edge of obscurity, armed with great songs that beg to be heard, and for at least a little while, they’re yours alone. But you know that the day will come when everyone gets wise and flocks to them too.
And there’s nothing you can do about it.
On the other hand, how can these bands get their deserved adoration if I keep them to myself? Continue reading →
As if being one of 2009’s breakout bands—thanks to their incredible Merge release Up From Below—wasn’t enough, it appears that Edward Sharpe and The Magnetic Zeros also have some cinematic ambitions. They’ve just released “Kisses Over Babylon,” the second installment in a 12-part video series entitled SALVO! The videos depict a Mad Max-style post-apocalyptic wasteland where water is in short supply and Edward Sharpe is a wanted man. The clip costars character actor-extraordinaire David Strathairn, best known for his riveting performance as Edward R. Murrow in Good Night and Good Luck.
And, since no indie rock video these days is complete without some gratuitous nudity, you should be warned that the video is slightly NSFW. Finally, in case you missed it, we’ve also got the first part of the epic series, “Desert Song”, after the jump. Continue reading →
Britt Daniels and his band Spoon recently released details about their new album, Transference, which is set to be released January 19 on Merge Records. Today, Daniels & Co. unveiled the album’s first single, the vintage-sounding “Written in Reverse”.
The single will be officially released January 5, but if you’d rather not use a fork to scratch the new-Spoon itch, you can stream it at the Merge Records online store. The band will also do a mini tour of the ‘States this December, including a gig at UC San Diego’s RIMAC Arena in La Jolla. Then, in February, they’ll head to sunny Europe. Dates are after the jump. Continue reading →