The MataBlog is edited by Matador Records’ co-moaner Gerard Cosloy and individual entries are the work of whoever’s name is next to them. If you enjoyed something in the MataBlog, thank you very much! If there was something you found particularly troubling, please be advised that a) maybe you should read it again and b) the contents of this blog do not necessarily represent the opinions of Matador Records, Beggars Group, the combined staff of either company, nor the Matador artist roster. Opinions are like friends — hardly anyone has one worth listening to.

I Am Busy Blogging Right Now

I have gotten out of two marketing meetings just this week using this line.


(link via Anthony Hype Machine)

Whirled Premiere : The Ponys


The Ponys - "Double Vision" (mp3), from the forthcoming stereophonic CD/LP, 'Turn The Lights Out' (March 19, 2007)

As Long As Cat Power & Yo La Tengo Win, It's All Good With Us

The New York Times' Ben Sisaro on the latest attempt to supplant the Village Voice's venerable critics' poll --- memo to Glenn Boothe, you've been ripped off, brother!


This week Idolator, a newish music blog owned by Gawker Media, seized on the outrage and disappointment felt by critics around the country who saw the recently fired Mr. Christgau (above) — and Chuck Eddy, the Voice music editor, who was dismissed in April — as a force of credibility and journalistic continuity, by announcing its own poll, Jackin’ Pop.

“For those who had long turned to The Voice to help guide them through the realm of pop, rock and hip-hop,” the announcement read, “the 51-year-old alt-weekly now had about as much musical credibility as, say, a three-month-old blog.”

The new survey will be organized by Michaelangelo Matos, a well regarded freelance writer who has served as music editor at the Voice-owned Seattle Weekly. (When New Times Media acquired Village Voice Media, it also took its name.) Jackin’ Pop will have some new technological bells and whistles, like demographic breakdowns of ballots, but will largely be modeled after Pazz & Jop. Mr. Matos, 31, said it was as much a homage to that model as a protest against the new Voice.

But based on an unscientific survey of far fewer rock critics than the 800 or so who usually contribute to Pazz & Jop — Mr. Matos said he was shooting for 1,200 — the presence of a rival is less likely to cause a rift among critics than a shrug, because of doubts about Idolator’s ability to match the quality and breadth of Mr. Christgau’s work and about the future of rock criticism itself.

I don't know if this qualifies as "a rift amongst critics", but the Idolators claimed yesterday that "an email is circulating among New Times staffers that not only talks up how great their poll is going to be this year, but also warns its staffers not to vote in our poll!"

Matador's annual round-up of staff and artist faves-of-they-year concluded will be running quite soonish, and I can make the following guarantees :

a) the diversity of the recordings chosen will make both the Pazz & Jop and Jackin' Pop polls look quite dull by comparison.
b) at least a third of the recordings selected will have actually been listened to more than once by the poll's participants
c) Not only are Matador staffers highly encouraged to vote in both the Pazz & Jop and Jackin' Pop polls if they are invited and/or eligible to do so, but the entire workforce is expected to turn up at the office this Saturday for a full day of online voting for the 2007 Plug Awards

Youth : Wasted On The Young


Perhaps the most depressing thing about that New York Times article on the nu-breed of kid rockers was learning the most highly touted of the bunch just sound like a watered down Times New Viking. (video link from Skinny Robbie)

Mission Of Burma - January US Dates

(Roger, Bob and Clint, pic swiped from Drowned In Sound)

1/12 - Double Door, Chicago, IL
1/13 - The Earl, Atlanta, GA
1/19 - Irving Plaza, NYC, NY
1/20 - Paradise Theatre, Boston, MA

tickets for the Boston show are available now

Alan Freeman dies aged 79

Alan 'Fluff' Freeman 

A sad sad day for us Brits....

Rest in peace Fluff

Attn New Media Types: Blog Action For Cheap

payola.jpgJust as soon as all you Zune marketing department, indie publicist and new media types wasted all that intern bandwidth researching bloggers mailing addresses and adding them to your PR machine, a company has come along and applied what radio folks have known for a long's soooooo much easier to just buy the airtime. 
For a mere $250 (sometimes more or less based upon your desired blog's Technorati ranking) you can "buy" a review on an mp3 blog via At first, we thought this would be the land of, but there are some participating blogs that we can't quite get our heads around why they've stooped.  Hey, we all gotta put bread on the table, but is whoring out 200 words in your center column really the way to go?

Elton John Update

Since Nils was kind enough to post to the Matablog the last time Elton John went ka-boom in public, I figured we're obliged to keep up with the great man's public utterings on a semi-regular basis.  There's a chart battle of sorts taking place in the UK at the moment with titles from Oasis, U2 and Westlife, amongst others, all vying for the top spot. Elton's already picked his fave

"I am so glad Westlife are ahead of Oasis."

After what fucking Noel Gallagher  (above) said about me [not buying his own milk] I couldn't give a shit about Oasis. I go into fucking shops all the time myself.

"He's an absolute tosser and looks like Parker from Thunderbirds."

When and if Elton has anything else interesting to say, we'll do our best to pass it along. Thank you. 


Cory Brown, PF & The Now You See It, Now You Don't +/- Review


To paraphrase Yogi Berra, when you come to a Pitchfork in the road, take 'em to the woodshed.

Welcome To Department Awwwwwww


With the possible exception of Tony La Russa (Jane Wieldin?) there's no one I'd rather take cat care advice from than Jethro Tull's Ian Anderson (link taken from Panopticist)

....and my favourite colour is green.


Words, even the rude ones, fail me. 


In Praise Of Noel Gallagher

He might be the brains behind one of the dullest bands on Planet Earth, but every now and then, Noel Gallagher knocks it out of the park, at least in the sound-bite sweepstakes.  From Wednesday's Mirror :

Noel Gallagher (above) was yesterday branded "ignorant" after he told British soldiers wounded in Iraq to stop moaning.

The Oasis songwriter, 39, said Tony Blair's decision to go to war was an "almighty cock-up".

But he blasted troops who claim compensation.

He said: "The troops want to go, all they want to do is fight. If you're bothered about getting shot don't join the Army."

Veterans representative Ray Bristow said Gallagher only had the freedom to comment thanks to the sacrifice of others.

Mr Bristow said: "I think he's an ignorant man, ignorant in the sense of not understanding."

Pte Lionel O'Connor, who lost his leg in Iraq, said: "If he has got a comment like that, send him out there."

Yeah, but....he doesn't want to go there. That's the whole point. Noel would prefer not to be shot, hence, his reluctance to join the Army and GET SHOT.

As for whether or not the deluded brave forces fighting in Iraq are protecting Gallagher's right to free expression, I'd throw the question back at anyone in the military.  Never mind whether or not the war was justified, whether or not we're making a bad situation worse and let's just avoid the question of Western biz interests being the biggest beneficiaries.  Let's presume that G.I. Schmoe is being asked to risk life and limb so Noel Gallagher can record crap like 'Heathen Chemistry'.

I submit that's too high a price to pay.

Dirk Dirksen, Dead At 69

The man responsible for many of the Avengers, Dead Kennedys, VKTMS, Negative Trend, etc. shows at San Francisco's Mabuhay Gardens and On Broadway passed away on Sunday.  From the SF Chronicle's Joel Selvin.

Dirk Dirksen, the godfather of San Francisco punk rock and the often abrasive ringmaster of the North Beach punk emporium Mabuhay Gardens, died unexpectedly in his sleep Monday night. He was 69.Mr. Dirksen presented acts such as the Dead Kennedys, Devo, the Ramones, Flipper, the Mutants, the Nuns, Black Flag, the Go-Go's and literally thousands more in the 10 years he operated the Broadway nightclub, fondly known as the Fab Mab.Mr. Dirksen, who called himself "the pope of punk," was known for peppering audiences and performers alike with abuse and insults."I'm sorry to see you're that easily pleased," he told the crowd at the end of one band's performance. "You should try and show some intelligence and sophistication and not just accept any slop that's thrown in your trough."He turned to the musicians, who were trying to stalk off the stage, thinking he was not going to let the band have an encore.
"I'll give you one," he said, "but only because the next group is an absolute pimple in the armpit of progress. Now everybody, please pay attention because it's time to play 'People Are Stupid.' "

"He was super obnoxious onstage," said Penelope Houston of the Avengers. "He would stand there with that little dog under his arm, being a target for whatever they wanted to throw. At the same time, he loved all those people. In a way, they were his family."

The dog's name was Dummy.

Mr. Dirksen once estimated that his nose had been broken seven times during his years as a nightclub impresario.

Among the highlights of the Mabuhay's annual calendar was always his birthday celebration, where each year he dreamed up a different mock torture for himself -- flogging, beheading, etc. One year he had himself burned at the stake.

Mission Of Burma : New Boston Date

(Roger Miller, as photographed by the Daily Californian's Peter Kim)

Mission Of Burma
will return to the scene of some of their greatest artistic crimes triumphs on January 20, when they hit the boards of Commonwealth Avenue's Paradise Theatre.   Tickets are on sale now.

In addition, "Not A Photograph", the Mission of Burma documentary directed by Jeff Iwanicki and David Kleiler Jr., will be shown at Brookline, MA's Coolidge Corner Theatre on Tuesday, November 21 at 7PM.  The DVD version of "Not A Photograph" is being released by MVD the very same day, but only those attending the Coolidge Corner presentation will experience the joy of embarrassing Peter Prescott by asking him to sign a copy (plus the "Academy Fight Song" 7", old Volcano Suns set lists, etc.  If you've got something happening on eBay, this should be a great opportunity). 

You Don't Have To Be From Jersey To Miss Uncle Floyd...


....but it probably helps. 

Paste - Never As Readable As When They're Testifying As To The Brilliance Of Jennifer O'Connor

Y'know, Paste might be a bunch of Wes Anderson-loving, Yep Rock-smooching bunch of Christ Humpers, but when they're right, they're right. 

Cat Power In Memphis

(old Philly flyer art by The Heads of State)

Cat Power played a very special show in Memphis earlier this week and our buddies at Loudersoft were there.  It's an exceptionally well written piece...thanks guys!

Read:  Loudersoft in Memphis.

Fuck Coachella, This Is Where The Action Is


Watch your back, Barry Hogan. Someone else has a wildly ambitious rock fest in the works.  From the Voice Of Korea (link swiped from Ken Freedman and WFMU's Beware Of The Blog)

If you are a band playing any kind of rock, including heavy metal, then you can participate 'ROCK FOR PEACE' in Pyong Yang, the capital city of North Korea. This is the very first time in history that North Korea allows western musicians in the heart of DPRK territory to play capitalist popular music. There are few restrictions and conditions on participation but any band will be considered even though you are from USA. The lyrics should not contain admirations on war, sex, violence, murder, drug, rape, non-governmental society, imperialism, colonialism, racism, anti-DPRK, and anti-socialism. The concert will be held from March 01 to March 04, 2007 under the management of Voice of Korea. We currently received requests of 35 bands from 19 countries and participations are increasing everyday. ROCK FOR PEACE will be the 2007 version of Woodstock rock festival in 1969 but in different location and in different goals, We welcome every musician as long as they are purely music based without political intentions. For inquiries, email to Jean-Baptiste Kim, the head of Voice of Korea.

Campers In Front Of Best Buy On 622 Broadway Not For The Ponys' In-store


Hey - can someone make sure Nils knows that I did go downstairs and check on that line of campers in front of Best Buy.   No one, I repeat, no one had ever heard of The Ponys. So we're still good to give Pitchfork the exclusive on that April in-store announcement.



SM & The Jicks - '07 Dates


(SM and the no-longer Jicked up John Moen, Irving Plaza, June '05, photo swiped from One Louder)

Stephen Malkmus & The Jicks, featuring the drumtastic talents of new addition Janet Weiss, have just announced the following live outings

January  2007

9-Tucson, AZ @ Plush
10-Tempe, AZ @ Marquee Theatre
11-Flagstaff, AZ @ Orpheum Theatre
17-Bellingham, WA @ The Nightlight

(more West Coast dates to be confirmed, shortly)


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