Gothamist posted a list of what they consider the eight best music venues in New York earlier this week. They didn’t include any illegal underground DIY spaces for “obvious reasons,” (I had no idea DBA was legit!) which only sort of makes sense because they’ve written about them a bunch of times before and I’ve seen profiles of DIY spaces in larger publications like The New York Times before and I don’t see Ray Kelly knocking on too many doors in the industrial park or on Kent Avenue. But hey, I respect it. No one wants these guys in trouble.
In that context, and fuck, even NOT in that context, I’m not sure how they didn’t include Mercury Lounge on the list. It’s a fucking joke. Mercury is probably the best intimate room in the city. The sound is amazing. The drinks are affordable. It’s in a relatively cool neighborhood. It’s easy to get to. It’s the Bowery booking empire’s proving ground – meaning any rising band looking to get into their venue hierarchy system which also includes Bowery Ballroom, Music Hall of Williamsburg and Terminal 5 (not to mention booking deals with Webster Hall, Madison Square Garden, Barclays Center and more) plays the space. The Strokes played there before they made it big, for fuck’s sake. It’s got that kind of mystique.
You guys should know better. Especially with The Town Hall, of all places, on the list.
Here’s the eight venues that should comprise this list:
5) Vaz, PC Worship, Ornament (Sunday)
The Northside yuppies whose noise complaints have lead to this month’s show postponements over at Rough Trade should take 311 off of their speed dials and direct much of their aggression towards Vaz, Brooklyn’s elder statesment of noise. The trio has been punishing eardrums and shattering plate glass windows with layered crypto-art rock since the late 90s, back when the luxury tower dwellers were ruining the vibes in the East Village. On Sunday, they’ll take to the pristine stage at Baby’s All Right with two bands who seem to have spent some time with their records, one of my favorite noise bands in the city, PC Worship and Ornament.
Baby’s All Right, $10
Brooklyn Vegan notes that Cloud Nothings will follow up 2012′s incredible Attack on Memory (my associate editor’s favorite album of last year, and my #3) with a “noisier” album in 2014. Details are scant except for a teaser vid which the band released the other day (watch it below), but the record will be out sometime next year.
We’ll keep ya posted on tour dates; follow Cloud Nothings and we’ll notify you when the announce a NYC-area show.
Big news for MSL favorites Perfect Pussy, who play at NYU tonight and Shea Stadium tomorrow (both of which come highly recommended and will be attended by yrs truly): they’ve just signed to Brooklyn tastemaking label Captured Tracks.
It’s a huge career move for one of the best bands out there today, as they’ll join the ranks of high-profile indie bands like DIIV, Widowspeak, Wild Nothing, Mac DeMarco and more.
Nice work, Perfect Pussy. Congrats!
We just posted that Rough Trade is postponing, moving, or canceling all of their shows in December, but a weird silver lining to the dreadful news is that shows like Pretty Lights and Childish Gambino have been upgraded to a bigger space: Music Hall of Williamsburg. That means more wristbands are available, so you should act… well, NOW, because they won’t be around for long. You can gain entry to both by purchasing both artists’ new records.
Major bummer. Since it’s opening, Rough Trade has been riding the crest of an impossibly beautiful wave as arguably the city’s best-booked venue, but it would appear that they’ve got some major issues with sound, which has lead them to put all shows on their calendar for the month “on hold”
DIIV and Andrew Bird’s shows have been canceled outright, as are Au Revoir Simone’s, The Stepkids and Lucius. The remaining shows on this month’s calendar will be moved to other venues. Pretty Lights and Childish Gambino have already been moved to Music Hall of Williamsburg. More from Rough Trade’s press release:
Following consultation with local residents and local authorities, Rough Trade and The Bowery Presents have decided it would best to put ‘on hold’ all live performance events at the Rough Trade NYC store, until further notice. This decision has been made to allow additional sound remediation work to be carried out, during which time scheduled RTNYC live events, where possible, will be transferred to the other local venues. RTNYC
The store will remain open while they work out the kinks. We’ll keep you posted on the calendar as we learn more.
Black Panties is out on December 10, but that record won’t be the only new music we’ll be hearing from R. Kelly in the near future. IFC Channel has confirmed that Kelly will release new chapters of Trapped In The Closet in 2014:
We hope all of these bands are playing the 2014 Warped Tour again, which will take over two NYC-area venues next summer: PNC Bank Arts Center on July 6 and Nikon at Jones Beach on July 12. If you act fast, you can score a ticket to the fest for just $23.50. Both shows are on sale now, though we don’t have anything in the way of lineup details yet. Except Bouncing Souls, they play every year, right?
PRIME TROLLBAIT! Well, maybe not PRIME trollbait (otherwise he woulda ranked Samsung Magna Carta, S4 #1) but Jay Z decided to eschew the traditional year-end tradition of ranking the best albums of the year from the entire musical landscape and instead rank and rate his own albums. Self-assessment is a pretty healthy activity, I guess. Check it; the parentheticals, BTW, are Jay’s not mine:
Speedy Ortiz have released an Instagram-whitewashed video for their sprawling, post-Malkmus Major Arcana highlight No Below, directed by Boast Choan. Sadie Dupuis and the gang hang out in the woods, pour food all over each other and rock weird masks. Is that what people do in Western Mass? Dunno, looks pretty chill. Check it out after the jump.
Major Arcana is rightly popping up on pretty much everyone’s year end lists (SPOILER: it will chart pretty high on ours) and they’ll be playing some pretty big stages over the next couple of weeks after playing about 700 CMJ shows and running the DIY gauntlet for much of the past spring and summer. You can catch em opening for The Breeders at Webster Hall on December 19 and 20 and for Los Campesinos! at Irving Plaza on January 22. All of those shows are highly recommended.