Courtney Barnett and Kurt Vile Break Down Every Song on Their Album, Lotta Sea Lice

2. “Let It Go”

Courtney, you wrote this one, right?

KV: That’s my favorite one.

CB: I wrote the instrumental part of it years ago, when I was in my early 20s. I was playing slide guitar in this other band, and my guitar was tuned all funny, and I came up with it one day. But for years I just could not put words to it. It was really hard to sing and play, ’cause it’s kind of finger-picky. Then, when we organized the studio time together, I was like, “Oh, shit. I need to bring a song.” It was good, because if I don’t have any sort of deadline I’ll keep putting things off. I was doing the lyrics that morning.

KV: A lot of getting a song done is booking the studio time. I’m the kind of person who will set time aside to do something and then do everything but that thing.

So did the lyrics you came up with at the last minute fit easily?

CB: The lyrics weren’t finished when we tracked it. I had these placeholder lyrics, and the chorus was something that sounded weird.

KV: It was, “You’ve got to take the pip with the pulp.”

CB: I thought it was really clever, but then I was like, “Actually, that’s dumb.”

KV: Well, I liked it.

3. “Fear Is Like a Forest”

Courtney, this is a cover of one of your partner Jen Cloher’s songs. Why did you decide to take it on here?

CB: Jen wrote the song around 10 years ago. I play guitar in Jen’s band, and sometimes we play it live, and it’s such a Crazy Horse song. So I was like, “This would be really cool if Kurt was on it.” We shredded it out.

4. “Outta the Woodwork”

This is a remake of the song “Out of the Woodwork,” from Courtney’s 2013 EP, How to Carve a Carrot Into a Rose. Kurt, were you nervous to put your spin on this track?

KV: I originally tried to record this on my own while I was on tour, but it just wasn’t good enough. I needed Courtney as a muse. So when we met up to record together again, I was sitting in the studio playing this song acoustic. I still was self-conscious. I was like, “I don’t know if it’s gonna work out.” But I just had to fake myself out. The next day, I had an electric guitar and sang it in a more rock’n’roll style, and Courtney was in the other room singing backup and playing percussion. It turned into this different animal. I love it.

5. “Continental Breakfast”

When did this track come together during the recording process?

CB: We recorded it a year after doing our first session together. We were both doing a million other things in that year. I knew Kurt was coming back to Melbourne, so we booked some more time to finish the record.

KV: I sent Courtney a demo of this song while I was on vacation with my family in Hawaii. I wanted to show her that I had something legit and also to see if she liked it—and she did.


In Between Spaces


by Porya Hatami & Darren McClure

This is the first full length collaboration between Porya Hatami and Darren McClure. Both artists have shared a mutual respect for each other’s work over the years, and in the Spring of 2014 they began a project together that slowly and organically unfolded between Iran and Japan resulting in this album.

Rough edges collide with smooth surfaces creating tactile layers of ambience, through which sparse piano and synths rise to the fore. Field recordings and drones have been woven with melodies and harmonic tones. From these elements, five tracks explore the intersection between opposing textures, the interplay between different shades and the hidden moments of in-between spaces.

Granulated ambient sound…


Song Of The Day: Jukebox The Ghost – Stay The Night


How many things in life bring you pure happiness? Like I’m talking pure, unadulterated happiness. Tail wagging, hands clapping, grinning ear to ear, new ice cream cone, new car, first pumpkin spice latte of the season, presents wrapped under the tree, laden Thanksgiving table, fireworks on the 4th of July, freshly baked apple pie, ice cream cake, snow day happiness?

Jukebox the Ghost is pure unadulterated happiness in sonic form. From power pop to ballads, the trio’s glittering, silky smooth, energy-infused tracks are pure perfection. If the threesome weren’t so darn cute, quirky, and lovable you’d almost hate them for being too perfect.

Jukebox the Ghost is on tour right now – you can catch them coming up at San Francisco (10/27), Chicago (10/28 and 10/29), Philadelphia (10/31), Brooklyn (11/16), Waterloo (12/2), and Toronto (12/3). Go experience the happiness.

The post Song Of The Day: Jukebox The Ghost – Stay The Night appeared first on The Panic Manual.


Jóhann Jóhannsson Ramps Up the Tension in Ryuichi Sakamoto Remix


As we mentioned earlier this month, Ryuichi Sakamoto has two new records on deck before the end of the year: the moody score for the Korean movie Ikari, and a collection of carefully curated remixes called Async Remodels. Its latest official leak is available below: an incredibly tense “Solari” take by the one-and-only Jóhann Jóhannsson….

The post Jóhann Jóhannsson Ramps Up the Tension in Ryuichi Sakamoto Remix appeared first on self-titled.


Steve Moore Shares Panic-Button Piece From Synth-Driven Mayhem Score

Zombi co-founder Steve Moore continues his move towards making proper soundtracks next month with the synth-driven score for Mayhem. A blood-soaked black comedy with a heavy dose of horror, it stars Steven Yeun (The Walking Dead) as one of many white-collar workers who kinda, sorta lose it when a virus breaks out in their office.

Check out one of Moore’s longer panic-button pieces below, along with another selection from the album (available for pre-order here, and due out November 24th through Relapse), its official trailer, and the composer’s last two LPs….

Mayhem soundtrack

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Video: Dizzy in Denmark, 1970

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Day #3 of my Dizzy Gillespie tribute. Today, a concert video of Gillespie with his big band at the Tivoli Gardens Concert Hall in Copenhagen, Denmark, on November, 4 1970. And what a monster big band it was! The musicians were Gillespie (tp, voc); Benny Bailey, Art Farmer, Dusko Goycovich and Idrees Sulieman (tp); Nat Peck, Ake Persson and Erik van Lier (tb); Tony Coe and Derek Humble(as); BIlly Mitchel and Ronnie Scott (ts); Sahib Shihab (bs); Francy Bolland (p); Jimmy Woode (b) and Kenny Clarke (d). [Photo above from YouTube]

Here’s the video…


New Music: Introducing – Joji

Unless you’ve been living under a rock and have only just discovered the internet, the chances are that that you will have seen or come across George ‘Joji’ Miller already. Yes, he’s the guy responsible for the Filthy Frank TV series and irrespective of your views on the thing (for the record I didn’t like it at all) it was a huge online hit, pulling in millions of views. He also put out, under the name Pink Guy, a low-brow cringey ‘comedy’ album that ended up topping the iTunes chart. It was an offensive release that made me shake my head in disbelief and realise that no matter how interested I remain in popular youth culture as I get older, I just wasn’t in touch with what ‘the kids’ were into these days.

Yet Joji has also gone on record saying that he only started Filthy Frank and Pink Guy to draw attention to himself and that it all just got a little bit out of control so he had to roll with it. Underneath all the pink bodysuited You Tube weirdness (click here if you still have no idea) and meme frenzies was a serious musician just waiting to break out and today, Joji delivered on his promise with Will He the first song from his forthcoming debut EP due at the start of November. 

Will He is a surprisingly downbeat piece of music featuring stripped back ghostly piano reminiscent of something you might expect to hear on a Nils Frahm or Aphex Twin ambient record, with slo-mo beats and languid woozy vocals. It’s difficult to comprehend that this is even the same man as Filthy Frank, such is the lonely late-night feel of this drowsy song, which is really rather (and I’m in shock to say this) beautiful. 

The video is mesmerising as well – and yes Breaking More Waves regulars will be very pleased to see that he’s wasted no time in getting into the bath, albeit a blood one.

Despite having been on-line for less than 24 hours this video has already had over 500,000 views, showing the power of You Tube in developing an artists profile. Let’s hope he keeps things like this and doesn’t start referencing Dumplings or scaring people for lols.

Joji – Will He (Video)


Autobahn Strips Its Sound Down to Raw Dance-Rock on “Execution/Rise” Single

Autobahn frontman Craig Johnson gets it; he’s well aware how bleak the UK band’s worldview appears to be on their looming felte / Tough Love LP, The Moral Crossing. Listen a little more closely, however, and you’ll find a sliver of sunshine peeking through the clouds, a contrast as cutting as the group’s steely post-punk sound.

“Actually, as a band, we’re more optimists,” explains Johnson. “I don’t find talking about this stuff as ‘dark’, but it’s stuff people don’t usually want to talk about—execution, rising from the dead, depression, feeling utterly lost and unsure where to go. To understand the moral crossing, to go one way or the other, and how it can change your life. For me, saying this stuff out loud give the feeling that there’s a future.”

While that may be true, today’s #selftitledpremiere bares its fangs with little signs of solace in sight. Here’s what Johnson had to say about the track, followed by the album’s two previous singles….

This was a completely different song when we recorded it the first time around. After recording the guitar I muted everything apart from the guitar and drums, to find this raw, intense dance track. It sounded far more direct than anything we’d ever written, so we built the rest of the song around it. “Execution / Rise” is a reference to being punished for one’s sins, but rising again!

Autobahn UK tour dates:
11/4 Oxford – O2
11/5 Leeds – Brudenell Social Club
11/8 Bristol – Louisiana
11/9 London – The Lexington
11/10 Brighton – The Joker
11/11 Southampton – Heartbreakers
11/16 Leicester – The Cookie
11/17 Sheffield – Record Junkee
11/18 Wrexham – Undegun
11/22 Glasgow – Broadcast
11/23 Edinburgh – Sneaky Pete
11/24 Stockton-on-Tees – Ku Bar
11/25 Manchester – The White Hotel

Autobahn | The Moral Crossing white vinyl

The Moral Crossing
(felte / Tough Love, November 3rd)

1. Prologue
2. Obituary
3. Future
4. The Moral Crossing
5. Torment
6. Low/High
7. Execution/Rise
8. Creation
9. Fallen
10. Vessel


The post Autobahn Strips Its Sound Down to Raw Dance-Rock on “Execution/Rise” Single appeared first on self-titled.


Destroyer’s Dan Bejar Decodes Every Song on His New Album, ken

4. “Cover From the Sun”

This is a really upbeat one, and the tone feels different than a lot of other Destroyer material.

When I first wrote it, it was much more in a pub rock vein. I was thinking of a Pete Doherty, picaresque kind of song. It seems like a short little adventure to me, a quick rollick. It’s atypical, which I think is cool.

It’s also filled with references. You go from the Smiths to Shakespeare in one line.

Yeah, that’s typical Destroyer bullshit. It’s a fun song that rips on itself in a way. It’s definitely mocking the singer.

5. “Saw You at the Hospital”

Is there a reason you kept this one in a mostly acoustic arrangement?

I like it as a breath in the middle of the record—I also like it because I started writing it in a hospital.

What happened?

I got really bad pneumonia during the Poison Season tour, and one thing you’re not supposed to do is drink and sing your way through that. It’s the sickest I’ve ever been in my adult life. I went to a hospital in Switzerland to get antibiotics, and they’re like, “Actually, you have to stay here for three days.” I was pretty out of it. I hadn’t slept in… I don’t know how long. Getting sick when you’re living on a bus is not good.

I remember being in the hospital, maybe a bit doped up, and thinking of classic “ending up in the hospital” songs. The Stones have a couple good ones. I was like, “OK, I’m gonna throw my hat in.” I came up with the first couple lines about being insane and the gown on wrong in the rain—I had my gown on all fucked up. There were also lots of ridiculous lyrics that did not make it into the song, stuff about Swiss nurses making eyes at me. Just the ramblings of a not-well mind.

This all sounds uncharacteristically autobiographical for you.

Yeah, that’s not generally how I write at all. In the end, the song took off in a different direction. I started thinking about places of sickness or madness, which were being equivocated with castles and the Palace Hotel and decadence. It ended up being more like this whirling ball of depravity, which mellows out in the end with someone watching guitar amplifiers in a snowstorm. Just image-based stuff, Swiss surrealism.

6. “A Light Travels Down the Catwalk”

This is a song you’ve been playing live for a while, in a much different rendition.

I really do like playing and singing this song, which is probably part of what drove me to write more songs on the guitar. I tried it with the band for Poison Season, but there was a folk-pop jauntiness to the chord progression that seemed at odds with the lyrics, which were trying to describe a glamorous world in which Satan presents him or herself. Once a lot of the melodic movement was taken out, it really came alive for me, because it exists in really stark contrast to the vocals. I think it’s good singin’. It shows that I’ve had some practice singing that song.

There’s an intensity to it I don’t think I’ve heard on a Destroyer record before.

It became apparent that the dark minimalism of the music brought out a brooding quality to the words that I didn’t even realize because, you know, I just write this shit.

7. “Rome”

This song opens the second half of the record. How would you describe the break between the two sides?

In some ways, the songs get weirder or more disparate on the second half. “Rome” seems really discombobulated to me. When I brought it in, it really had more of a singles bar vibe, like a sad disco song. Lyrically, there’s an aging-cruiser vibe to it. But it ended up getting cloaked in this Disintegration-style grandeur. Huge drums. It has a military quality now. I’ll be honest, I thought it was going to be a groovy ditty, to the extent that I wasn’t sure it should even be on the record. But as we worked on it, it became larger and larger sounding. It took on its own character.

8. “Sometimes in the World”

At under three minutes, this is one of the shorter songs on the record.

The brevity of the songs is something I’m still trying to digest, but this is just a Destroyer campfire song. Five years ago, I never would have recorded it. Just that first line: “I can’t pay for this, all I’ve got is money.” I really like it, but it made me feel uncomfortable right away, writing it and singing it.

Did the directness make you uncomfortable?

Yeah, someone addressing the ills of the world in a direct way. They’re statements that are maybe obvious, but if they’re so obvious, then how can the world possibly be how it currently is? And then there’s really sad lines: “Sometimes in the world the thing that you love dies, and you cry and cry and cry.” That’s not something you normally hear in a Destroyer song!

9. “Ivory Coast”

Your languid vocal performance on this song stood out to me. Were you intentionally going for something different?

I wanted it to sound desolate. My singing sounds kind of wasted and empty, which I really like. It’s got a strung-out vibe. There’s a quality to the vocal where I don’t really sound like myself.

Who is the narrator?

Miserable pirates—the down-and-out, sad mercenary.

10. “Stay Lost”

This song seems to be offering some kind of advice: “Being alone’s an illusion.”

It’s basically a user’s guide to being in the world. It addresses the audience in a way that’s anthemic, but it’s not an anthem. Or if it’s an anthem, it’s one where you’re supposed to sing along in your speaking voice. It’s a call to abandonment, or a call to roaming, or to embrace hopelessness. It’s an attempt, somehow, to sing about those things melodically in an uplifting way, even if you’re not trying to provide any hope whatsoever.

The song seems built from the parts of rock’n’roll. The first eight Destroyer records are in love with rock’n’roll but they are constantly attacking on the language of rock’n’roll—they are filled to the brim with concerns that you’re not supposed to find in a rock song. At some point, there was a shift. I mean, I still get excited about hearing cool words in songs, and I still get bummed out by how, 99 percent of the time, the words in songs just range from pointless to bad. There is a desire in me to have the words and the music become one whole.

11. “La Regle Du Jeu”

La Règle Du Jeu is the title of a classic French film that takes place at a lavish party just before the beginning of World War II. Was your song inspired by that movie?

I can’t say those words without conjuring up that film, but it wasn’t inspired by it. It’s more inspired by it feeling so good for me to sing those words over and over and over again and trying to figure out why. The song has kind of a Euro cabaret feel, which is good, because I find it to be one of the more negative songs on the album. The images conjured in the song lead to something terrible on the horizon. I do feel like I’m singing to America in some way.

The first verse just recites vague, classical dream imagery of the world collapsing, and the second verse is describing a scene at a terrible party where you sense something bad is going to happen. And after that, I’m just saying “la règle du jeu” over and over again, like a mantra or a prayer at America’s death bed.

Is there a political message in it?

I know there’s lots of political talk right now, but I don’t see this as a topical record. The state of America is terrible, but it doesn’t strike me as a wildfire. I see it as a slow, steady crawl towards a terrible conclusion. I thought if I did sing to America, I wanted to do it in a language that they didn’t understand—or that they possibly actively hated. I thought French would be good for that.


Dizzy Gillespie at Cornell in 1947

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In early October 1947, Billy Shaw, a partner in the Gale booking agency, announced in Downbeat magazine that client Dizzy Gillespie and his big band would be performing at Cornell University on October 18. Why would a big band that played bebop, not dance music, bother to travel nearly six hours northwest to Ithaca, N.Y., on roads predating the New York State Thruway? The answer is Marshall Stearns, an ardent jazz fan, writer and critic who was on staff at Cornell. According to Christopher Coady’s John Lewis and the Challenge of "Real" Black Music, Stearns helped form the Cornell Rhythm Club, a university jazz club that invited Gillespie. The club arranged for a series of concerts and lectures that tied together jazz from the past with jazz from the present to demonstrate contemporary influences and to demonstrate that jazz, like all great art, was an ongoing, evolving story. [Photo of the Dizzy Gillespie Big Band, c. 1946-’48, by William P. Gottlieb]


Gillespie first formed a big band to play his new form of music in 1946. Though he had led small groups in 1945, Gillespie was more passionate about heading up and soloing with an orchestra. His 18-piece band in 1947 was at its peak, playing experimental arrangements written by Tadd Dameron, Gil Fuller and George Russell. As Gillespie described his new bebop sound to Kaspar Monahan of The Pittsburgh Press 10 days earlier, "It’s another way of phrasing and accenting. The accent is on the upbeat. Instead of OO-bah, it’s oo-BAH. Different chords, too. And lots of flatted 5ths and 9ths. There’s lots more to it. But just now, I can’t think of what." [Photo of Dizzy Gillespie in May 1947 by William P. Gottlieb]

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At Cornell, Gillespie’s band was exceptional. I know this because the concert was released some years ago on two vinyl albums: Dizzy Goes to College Vol.1 & Vol.2 (Jazz Showcase). The band featured Dizzy Gillespie (tp,vcl); Dave Burns, Elmon Wright, Matthew McKay and Ray Orr (tp); William Shepherd and Ted Kelly (tb); John Brown and Howard Johnson (as); James Moody and Joe Gayles (ts); Cecil Payne (bar); Milt Jackson (vib); John Lewis (p); Al McKibbon (b); Joe Harris (d); Chano Pozo (cga) and Kenny Hagood (vcl).


The songs were Cool Breeze, I Can’t Get Started, Relaxin’ at Carmarillo, Yesterdays, One Bass Hit, Salt Peanuts, A Night in Tunisia, Time After Time, Groovin’ High (incomplete), Anthropology, Things to Come, You Go to My Head, Hot House, Lover Man, Toccata for Trumpet, Nearness, Mam’selle and Oop-pop-a-da. The lineup was fairly similar to the one Gillespie brought into Carnegie Hall a month earlier in September 1947.

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What’s fascinating about Gillespie’s big band is that it sounds even better live than in the studio. This observation takes nothing away from the band’s studio recordings for Musicraft and RCA, just that the band sounds freer with more room to stretch out. A four-minute Hot House is a good example or the seven-minute-plus Oop-Pop-a Da. Other Gillespie albums that illustrate my point are Showtime at the Spotlite (Uptown) from the summer of 1946 and the The Salle Pleyel Concert in Paris in July 1948. Of the three, I’d give the edge to the Cornell University concert in terms of taut power.

After the concert, Gillespie’s big band performed at Boston’s Symphony Hall and then returned to New York. In December, with the second American Federation of Musicians’ second recording band due to go into effect in January, Gillespie was at RCA studios recording eight of his greatest works—Algo Bueno (Woody’n You), Cool Breeze, Cubana Be, Cubana Bop, Manteca, Good Bait, Ool-Ya-Koo, and Minor Walk. Oh to be at Cornell University in October 1948.

Dizzy Gillespie died in 1993 at age 75.


JazzWax tracks:
Dizzy Goes to College Vol.1 & Vol.2 (Jazz Showcase) are available on vinyl at eBay. The material also is on CD on the rare Jazz Masters of Jazz; Dizzy Gillespie, Vol. 11, 1947. This concert is perfect for a re-issue by Jordi Pujol and Fresh Sound.

JazzWax clips: Here’s Relaxin’ at Camarillo, arranged by George Russell. A fascinating orchestral interpretation of Charlie Parker’s song first recorded by Parker in February 1947 after he was released from Camarillo State Hospital in California…

Relaxin’ at Camarillo

Here’s Gillespie’s arrangement of I Can’t Get Started

I Can’t Get Started

And here’s Gil Fuller’s arrangement of One Bass Hit

One Bass Hit