Archives: February 2017

LISTEN — Coco Hames “When You Said Goodbye”

February 21st, 2017

“[Recently] on The Best Show, Coco Hames shared “When You Said Goodbye,” the gossamer jangle-pop opener from her self-titled solo debut, out March 31. Coco Hames is a deeply personal record filled with poignant ruminations on love lost and found, dreams dashed then rediscovered, and its ten songs manage to pinpoint exquisite light amid life’s darkness.

“I have avoided writing a straight-up breakup song about my feelings, but that’s what I did with this one,” the former frontwoman of The Ettes writes about the track. “These are my observations and Ed Grimley-esque justifications for my seesaw of emotions (I’m so sad! It’s okay! Are we friends? Should we be friends? Why be friends? Why do I care? Was it ever real? What??). It’s very literal, which for me teeters between embarrassing and beautiful.”

Coco Hames will be playing at SXSW, and more opportunities to see her live are on the horizon! Listen to her previously released track “I Do Love You” and pre-order Coco Hames now on CD and LP in the Merge store, or digitally here. The first 250 LP orders in our store will receive limited-edition opaque green vinyl! All pre-orders will include a free Coco Hames button, while supplies last, and will ship to arrive on or around the release date of March 31.”

— via Merge Records

Listen to “When You Said Goodbye” below!

WATCH — Chance The Rapper’s Grammy Performance + Tour Dates

February 20th, 2017

“Chance the Rapper has just made history at the 2017 Grammy Awards. With the 23-year-old rapper’s win for best new artist on Sunday night, the Chicago native became the first artist to win a Grammy for a streaming-only album. Before this year’s Grammys nominations were announced, the rules were changed to allow artists who were unsigned or released streaming-only albums to be eligible. Many saw the move from The Recording Academy, which gives out the Grammy Awards, as an endorsement of Chance specifically and his acclaimed album “Coloring Book.” Chance is also not signed to a label, another first at the Grammys. In all, he’s nominated for seven awards. Before the show, he won best rap performance for “No Problem.” While onstage to accept the Grammy for best new artist, Chance thanked God and “all of Chicago.””

— via Business Insider

Watch Chance’s Grammy performance below, and be sure to catch him on one of this upcoming North American tour dates!

TOUR DATES:

04.24.17 / San Diego, CA / Valley View Casino Center
04.26.17 / Oakland, CA / Oracle Arena
04.27.17 / Sacramento, CA / Golden 1 Center
04.29.17 / Salt Lake City, UT / Maverik Center
04.30.17 / Boise, ID / Ford Idaho Center
05.02.17 / Morrison, CO / Red Rocks Amphitheatre
05.03.17 / Morrison, CO / Red Rocks Amphitheatre
05.05.17 / Dallas, TX / JMBLYA
05.06.17 / Austin, TX / JMBLYA
05.07.17 / Houston, TX / Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion
05.09.17 / Tulsa, OK / BOK Center
05.10.17 / Omaha, NE / Century Link Center
05.12.17 / St Paul, MN / Xcel Energy Center
05.13.17 / Kansas City, KS / Providence Medical Center Amphitheater
05.14.17 / St Louis, MO / Scottrade Center
05.16.17 / Columbus, OH / Nationwide Arena
05.18.17 / Detroit, MI / The Palace In Auburn Hills
05.19.17 / Cleveland, OH / Blossom Music Center
05.20.17 / Pittsburgh, PA / PPG Paints Arena
05.21.17 / Gulf Shores, AL / Hangout Festival
05.24.17 / Toronto, ON / Budweiser Stage
05.25.17 / Montreal, QC / Bell Centre
05.26.17 / Boston, MA / Boston Calling
05.28.17 / Seattle, WA / Sasquatch
05.31.17 / Buffalo, NY / Darien Lake Performing Arts Center
06.02.17 / New York, NY / Governors Ball
06.03.17 / Virginia Beach, VA / Veterans United Home Loans Amp.
06.04.17 / Washington, DC / Jiffy Lube Live
06.06.17 / Baltimore, MD / Royal Farms Arena
06.07.17 / Greensboro, NC / Greensboro Coliseum
06.08.17 / Charlotte, NC / PNC Music Pavilion
06.10.17 / Manchester, TN / Bonnaroo
06.11.17 / Atlanta, GA / Lakewood Amphitheatre
06.13.17 / Miami, FL / American Airlines Arena
06.14.17 / Tampa, FL / Amalie Arena
06.16.17 / Eau Claire, WI / Eaux Claires Festival
06.17.17 / Dover, DE / Firefly Music Festival
10.03.17 / Los Angeles, CA / Hollywood Bowl
10.04.17 / Los Angeles, CA / Hollywood Bowl

LISTEN — Wax Tailor Interview w/ Colorado Public Radio

February 19th, 2017

“Recent terror attacks in France shocked the world. A shooting at a Paris concert venue felt especially scary for music fans there.

French music producer Wax Tailor watched this unfold in his home country. He had just wrapped up a U.S. tour two weeks before the Paris attack.

“It was very, very, very dark,” Tailor says. “I remember a morning just thinking: I would just like to take a ticket and hit the road in the U.S. Like just making a road trip.”

That fantasy became the motivation for his new album “By Any Beats Necessary.” Tailor says he wanted to create the ideal soundtrack for an American road trip as a sort of escape from reality.

So he immersed himself in American music — starting with the blues. It was a new world for the producer.

“I was not such a huge fan of the blues from the ’40s and all that,” he says. “But I just dig a little bit more. It was interesting to inject it into my music and try to make it my way.””

— via Colorado Public Radio

Check out audio from the interview HERE or watch “If I Had A Woman” below!

WATCH — Ibibio Sound Machine “Give Me A Reason”

February 18th, 2017

Ibibio Sound Machine invite us all to join their electrifying dance party in the new video for “Give Me a Reason” from the band’s full-length Merge debut Uyai, which will be in stores on March 3. The director of the clip, Ciaran Lyons of Forest of Black, writes: “The aim with the video was to create something that would do justice to the vibrancy and energy of the song. I felt like I could hear lasers, flashing lights, and dancing. Eno is such a great performer, and she has such striking stage costumes that she made the shoot itself really easy and fun. Afterwards, all I needed to do was create some of those lasers and flashing lights—which I did by hand-drawing them.”

Watch “Give Me A Reason” below!

WATCH — Kid Koala “Adrift (ft. Emilíana Torrini)”

February 17th, 2017

“At first blush, the music Kid Koala is making with Icelandic singer Emilíana Torrini seems to have nothing in common with the bright-toned, sample-heavy music that’s made his reputation since 2000’s Carpal Tunnel Syndrome. Music To Draw To: Satellite is composed of long, slow pieces that evolve slowly. They largely eschew pop structures and closure in general, instead acting as dilating moments of expression: they open, they expose a nerve, and they retreat. It’s one of the reasons we chose Satellite as one of the records we’re most excited for this year.

But as demonstrated by the aptly named “Adrift,” whose video we’re premiering today, Satellite is very much of a piece with Koala’s work to date—it’s just comprised of different elements. The Delta samples and stomping rhythms of 2012’s 12 Bit Blues are nowhere to be heard, but the song’s shape is familiar; where before the unwinding of a Koala track felt like an afternoon stroll through a very well-stocked record store, here he brings us on a similarly peripatetic tour of an entirely different—and less commodified—world of friendly drones and found percussion.

Torrini, somewhat incredibly, finds a jazzy strain in the groan of blue feedback and clatter and boom. Her voice skips over Koala’s soundscape like a stone, hopping from landing point to landing point with a sing-songy easiness that belies—or at least complicates—the song’s lyric. “Sometimes it’s easier just to stay blue,” she sings from among the organ folds while bells ring in the very distant background.

Accordingly, the video creates space that seems at first blush to be simply a container for Torrini’s voice. But just like Koala’s track, its sporadic splashes are an attraction enough on their own.”

— via Flood Magazine

Watch “Adrift” below!

LISTEN — Clap Your Hands Say Yeah “The Tourist”

February 16th, 2017

“It’s been a dozen years since Alec Ounsworth became an Internet sensation, as his band Clap Your Hands Say Yeah bypassed the label system to become internationally known through support from music blogs. But as that support waned with subsequent releases, and as the power of Internet buzz grew more diffuse, Ounsworth found a way to endure. Now on its fifth full-length album — plus side projects for various band members and a 2009 solo record for Ounsworth himself — Clap Your Hands Say Yeah returns with The Tourist, which shimmers, seethes and twitches in appealing new ways.

Still, The Tourist picks up where 2014’s Only Run left off: by deepening and expanding the Talking Heads-esque template of CYHSY’s early work. No matter how distressed and disconcerted Ounsworth appears across these 10 songs, his voice is swaddled in approachable sounds — synths, effects, harmonicas, acoustic guitars — that shine welcome light on his darkest mumbled ruminations.”

— via NPR

Listen to “The Tourist” below!

LISTEN — Jean-Michel Jarre Talks “Electronica 1: The Time Machine”

February 15th, 2017

“French electronic music pioneer Jean-Michel Jarre‘s album, “Electronica 1: The Time Machine,” has a Grammy nomination for Best Dance/Electronic Album. But “Electronica 1” is actually just half of an ambitious two-album project that includes “Electronica 2: The Heart of Noise.” For this ambitious project, Jarre recorded with more than 30 artists from all over the world, from the French band Air to the musician Moby to film director/composer John Carpenter. He even got cyber leaker Edward Snowden to pitch in.” — via The Frame

Listen to the full interview below, or click here if you prefer to read the highlights.