Thursday, November 20, 2008

For all your lies/ you're still very lovable

Bon Iver is not an artist for the ultra liberal, PETA crowd. His oft-told story of the conditions surrounding the recording of his debut album For Emma, Forever Ago (short story: secluded up in the woods, nobody around to interrupt but his own thoughts and the occasional deer hunt for food).

Bon Iver, Justin Vernon's stage moniker, self-released his debut back in late 2007. It was only when Jagjaguwar picked up the scent and re-released it in February of this year that it found widespread play. Since then it has become of the most universally lauded album of the year, well within the indie bubble at least. Given its mid-November and I heard my first Christmas song over the loudspeakers of a Walmart the day after Hallowe'en that means year-end/best-of lists can't be far behind. Expect to see For Emma, Forever Ago on many in a comfortable position.

But you probably know all this already. Justin recently did a session with Myspace Transmissions that I thought fit to point out. Well worth viewing and hearing. For Emma, though, is especially rapturous. Performed with piano as opposed to the album's acoustic guitar and if possible more stark and lonely even though Bon Iver is more effectively a trio than a solo venture these days. There is that moment when he sings out "Go find another lover" in that hushed bellow where you really see the Tunde Adebimpe comparisons justified. Both are just filled with these soulful voices that cast shadows over you.

Pitchfork reports that come January 20th in the new year the Bon Iver crew will release a four-song EP, entitled Blood Bank. Fantastic news indeed. Follow the link for full details. He has a string of dates in December along the eastern USA. Just don't wait too long to jump on tickets as I did last time he was in Toronto.

For those who enjoy the video above and the mp3 below I'd suggest checking out Bon Iver's contribution over at La Blogotheque/Take Away Shows.

Bon Iver - For Emma (Myspace Transmissions) mp3

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Wilco loves you baby

A few weeks back Jeff Tweedy appeared on The Colbert Report and sat down with Stephen for a slightly awkward chat. They talked about name changes, the free market, and Obama fever.

After the commercial break the whole band came on to perform a new song they'd been working on. Entitled Wilco the Song, it is immediately more enjoyable than anything off their last full length Sky Blue Sky.

Its lyrics expose a fit of election weariness now thankfully decided in the positive. Great guitar line from Nels Cline and some excellent melodies that stick in your sinuses. I wandered around Toronto Friday night after the Kings of Leon show and found myself wishing they'd played this instead.

Wilco is heading out as support for Neil Young at the end of November. They'll stop in for two dates at the ACC here in Toronto December 4th and 5th. Excited is an understatement for me, who will be attending the second date.

Canadian viewers can view the October 3oth interview and performance here. American readers at Comedy Central's website.

Can Wilco cure those mid-election, post-election, mid-November, post-October, nearly December case of the blues? Yes they can.

Wilco - Wilco the Song

Website: Wilco