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.

If You Wondering Why Matador's MySpace Profile Is So Tame...

...because as the above clip illustrates, we can't be too careful.

Times New Viking To Visit Big Hunks Of America, Small Bits Of Mexico And Canada

(from Listen Missy's Flickr page, used without permission)

7.13.07      grog shop   cleveland, oh
7.27.07     flipside   chicago, il
7.28.07     turf club  minneapolis, mn
7.31.07     the palace  missoula, mt
8.02.07     pub 340  vancouver, bc
8.03.07     ss marie antionette  seattle, wa
8.04.07     eagles lodge  portland, or
8.05.07     fool's foundation  sacramento, ca
8.06.07     off limits  chico, ca
8.07.07     hemlock tavern  san francisco, ca
8.08.07     stork club  oakland, ca
8.11.07     the smell  los angeles, ca
8.14.07     beerland  austin, tx
8.15.07     diverseworks art space  houston, tx

(August 2-15 with Little Claw)

8.17.07     @ tocada    monterrey (with Los Lamarada)
8.18.07     @ 'taladro fest'   ciudad victoria, tamaulipas (with Los Lamarada)

Shearwater's Visit To KEXP

Though I've not found a specific link to Shearwater's session at KEXP last Friday at noon (maybe you enter the date and time manually, here?), the station has posted a plethora of photos at their Flickr page

It's Like Someone Installed A Hidden Camera At 304 Hudson


Thanks to Wojohowicz for the link. And yes, this is exactly how we came to be associated with The New Pornographers.

The New Pornographers At NY's River To River Festival, July 4


If you want to go, you'd better hop on it.

Don't Call Him Metally Hanicapped...

(finally, someone agrees that listening to Meshuggah is not merely a lifestyle choice)

...because he's Metally Handicapable!  From The Local :

A Swedish heavy metal fan has had his musical preferences officially classified as a disability. The results of a psychological analysis enable the metal lover to supplement his income with state benefits.

Roger Tullgren, 42, from Hässleholm in southern Sweden has just started working part time as a dishwasher at a local restaurant.

Eventually his last employer tired of his absences and Tullgren was left jobless and reliant on welfare handouts.

But his sessions with the occupational psychologists led to a solution of sorts: Tullgren signed a piece of paper on which his heavy metal lifestyle was classified as a disability, an assessment that entitles him to a wage supplement from the job centre.

"I signed a form saying: 'Roger feels compelled to show his heavy metal style. This puts him in a difficult situation on the labour market. Therefore he needs extra financial help'. So now I can turn up at a job interview dressed in my normal clothes and just hand the interviewers this piece of paper," he said.

The manager at his new workplace allows him to go to concerts as long as he makes up for lost time at a later point. He is also allowed to dress as he likes and listen to heavy metal while washing up.

"But not too loud when there are guests," he said.

The Local spoke to an occupational psychologist in Stockolm, who admitted to being baffled by the decision.

"I think it's extremely strange. Unless there is an underlying diagnosis it is absolutely unbelievable that the job centre would pay pay out.

"If somebody has a gambling addiction, we don't send them down to the racetrack. We try to cure the addiction, not encourage it," he said.

Because heavy metal dominates so many aspects of his life, the Employment Service has agreed to pay part of Tullgren's salary. His new boss meanwhile has given him a special dispensation to play loud music at work.

"I have been trying for ten years to get this classified as a handicap," Tullgren told The Local.

"I spoke to three psychologists and they finally agreed that I needed this to avoid being discriminated against."

Times New Viking - This Saturday In Columbus

Aside from the fact 7 bands for 5 dollars doesn't seem like nearly enough live music, I can't imagine why you wouldn't want to go to this show. 

Shearwater is Playing a Free Show for The Salt Lake City Folk

 ole-757 palo santo_expanded edition2.jpg

Jonathan Meiburg and Thor Harris of Shearwater have been given the opportunity to play a free, all ages in-store performance at Slow Train in Salt Lake City next Thursday, June 28th at 6pm sharp.  

Slow Train: cds + vinyl + dvds
221 East Broadway
Salt Lake City, Utah   84111

Matador Welcomes The Cave Singers To Our Cavalcade Of Stars

We couldn't be happier to announce --- despite having already been scooped by Pitchfork --- that we've signed the Seattle trio The Cave Singers to a longer-than-long, worldwide pact. Composed of vocalist Pete Quirk, percussionist Marty Lund and guitarist Derek Fudesco, the band's first full length, 'Invitation Songs', recorded with Colin Stewart (Black Mountain, Pretty Girls Make Graves) is due out this Autumn.

photo: Jonny Leather's Flickr page
The Seattle Weekly's Brian Barr describes the trio's approach as akin to "an updated version of the Anthology of American Folk Music. Not the graduate-student, learned interpretations of folk music circa 1962, but folk music approached by way of punk rock. It's sparse, melodic, and simultaneously creepy and alluring, like the widow mourning graveside in Johnny Cash's 'Long Black Veil.'"

"Seeds Of Night" (MP3)

forthcoming Cave Singers dates:
06-20 Seattle, WA - Neumos
06-21 Bellingham, WA - Chiribin's
06-24 Eugene, OR - Sam Bond's Garage
06-26 Santa Cruz, CA - The Attic
06-27 San Francisco, CA - Bottom of the Hill
06-28 Fresno, CA - Tokyo Gardens
06-29 Los Angeles, CA - EL Cid
06-30 Los Angeles, CA - 6th St. Warehouse
07-01 San Diego, CA - The Casbah
07-28 Seattle, WA - Capitol Hill Block Party

Just Thank God Shatner Never Tackled "Out Of Step"

(link swiped from Sean Bonner via Boing Boing)

Taxman, Mr. Thief

No word on how the hacky-sac tax will be enforced, however, from the Tennesean's Jessica Fender.

Among the hippies, rockers, free spirits and other Bonnaroo revelers partying in Manchester today will be a less likely festival figure: the taxman.

In an example of Tennessee's controversial drug tax in action, state revenue agents plan to collect fees on the illegal substances that some concertgoers bring for personal use and sale. It's not an effort to curb drug use — for some, a Bonnaroo tradition that has sent tens to the hospital and a few to the morgue — but to make sure state and local authorities recoup drug enforcement costs.

For an ounce and a half of marijuana, just above the limit for a misdemeanor drug charge, the tax amounts to about $165, said Al Laney, director of tax enforcement for the state revenue department.

"Naturally, these people will be arrested and their assets will be confiscated," Laney said. "We assess a person while they're under arrest and seize any assets that law enforcement may want to turn over to us."

When You're The Greatest, You're On The Shortest List Of All

Congrats to Chan Marshall on the most recent Cat Power album, 'The Greatest' being awarded the 2007 Shortlist Music Prize.

Chan's victory brings to mind George C. Scott winning the Academy Award for Best Actor in 1970 for his lead performance in "Patton". Scott took a dim view of competition between true artists, calling the Oscars "a goddamn meat parade."

Though we've not heard from Chan on this matter (and I do not intend to speak on her behalf), I would like to stress that the staff, management and ownership of Matador Records have only the greatest appreciation for MEAT PARADES. Those of you who might find such spectacles demeaning or superfluous, perhaps you should just 'fess up. You're afraid.  Of Losing.  To Cat Power. 

So bring 'em on --- Grammies, American Music Awards, People's Choice, Plug Awards, the Noble Prize, etc.  If Chan's trophy cabinet gets a little too crowded, that's why there's an IKEA nearby.  And if they'd like to sponsor some sort of medal, loving cup or crystal statue, that's all the better.  

Some Challengers Talkin'

So......We've been working hard on all the extra tracks for the BEGN/Executive Edition of Challengers, the new album by my band The New Pornographers. Let me tell you about them. They are sounding really good I think. I'm kind of bummed that they didn't make the album but they will be available to all the people who splurge on the Exec. Edition. They are:

Silent Systems: This one was troubling me as a demo but then we decided that we should give it a Fleetwood Mac "Second Hand News" feel, and it fell together nicely.

The Speed Of Luxury: Scott Walker sang about luxuriating like planets in one verse from "The Girls From The Streets" and this entire song is about luxuriating like a planet. That is its literal meaning, it doesn't go any deeper really. This song is for the people who think that there aren't enough "rock" songs on Challengers. When we were working on it, Blaine suggested that it be the first song on the album, but it sadly ended up getting cut. It DOES pain me that we had to leave these songs off the record. I really like all of them. It's just not right, though, to put out a 65 minute long record. That is the kind of excess that is killing our society. Killing music. And yet, 4 CD Executive Editions are totally right-on. Because that is a choice.

Fortune: It was a shocker when this one ended up getting cut, like when Melinda Doolittle got voted off AI. This song is about my old neighborhood, Carroll Gardens, and the girl that I fell in love with there, much like the songs Challengers, Unguided and Go Places. Actually the song starts off in Greenwood Cemetery and then ends up in Carroll Gardens. Same difference.

Fugue State: As we mixed this, Josh said that it reminded him of Love. Nice of him to say, since they are my favorite band ever, but I don't believe it. I'm not sure how to describe Fugue State which is probably a good thing. Probably, I said.

Go Places (alternate mix): Usually I think alternate mixes are bullshit but I really like this one. It strips the song down to just the pretty instruments, no drums, bass or electric guitar, to a very nice effect I think. It's a little more reverbed out. If someone told me that they liked this version better, I would say "You have a valid opinion there."

I really want to add a few more extra songs for the Exec. Edition, but I can't talk out loud about them right now. I have to convince the band to learn and record them first. Yes, it's weird that the album is already available as a stream, and that I am still thinking about what songs to put on the Exec. Ed., but those are the times that we live in. Just know that we're trying to make your Challengers experience as pleasant as possible, and that this album, like your heart, is an open book.

Now I have to practice with the New Ps, then we fly to London for three club shows and Glastonbury, and we're also going to play a couple of songs at David Cross, Todd Barry and Eugene Mirman's comedy night at the 100 Club. Basically the London version of Tinkle. Tinkle, the comedy show. Both the Sex Pistols AND The Stingrays played the 100 Club. The Stingrays ruled. You should all go buy whatever Stingrays records that you can find. There is a CD retrospective called "From The Kitchen Sink" that is quite awesome. Do not be fooled by the other shitty bands that have called themselves The Stingrays. Only one of them ruled. Should be a fun little UK vacation.

You know who else was awesome? Opal. And Francoise Hardy.

That is all.

Matador June news update posted

The Matador June news update has been posted. 

Buy Early Get Now Pt. IV : The New Pornographers - Challengers

We haven't figured out the drum roll sound effects (sorry), and presenting the upcoming 4th album from the New Pornographers, 'Challengers' surely requires special effects that would make Michael Bay dizzy.  So if you wanna hear a strong candidate for 2007's Album Of The Year more than 2 months before street date, here's your big chance : [coolplayer width="250" height="250" autoplay="0" loop="0" charset="GBK" download="0" mediatype=""]begn-4 banner

TWO VERSIONS TO CHOOSE FROM:  "EXECUTIVE EDITION" AND "STANDARD EDITION". As usual, this Buy Early, Get Now preorder is available from a select group of physical and online retailers, listed here Or, you can order direct from Matador.

When you preorder the album with one of them, not only do you reserve a copy of "Challengers," for release date, there's mo' mo' mo'. 

Challengers: Executive Edition (list price $19.99)

* You Get It All + an exclusive, limited edition, CD/CD-R Box Set. 
*Full Album Stream  (available within days of your purchase)
*The Challengers Box-Set A very limited edition Treasury of New Pornography available only to Executive members. Includes three bonus CD-Rs, designed in a deluxe box set package bonus discs.Disc One:  B-Sides, Demos and Alternate MixesDisc Two:  The New Pornographers "Live From The Future"
Disc Three:  Videos, photos and artwork(note: you will download all of this material digitally as part of Buy Early Get Now, so some-assembly is required as some of these recordings haven't even happened yet.)
*Advance notice and exclusive ticket buying links for upcoming New Pornographers dates
*Anything extra that we can scheme up between now and the end of the world.

Challengers: The Standard (Cheapskate) Edition (list price 14.99)
Everything except the box set, the live disc, videos, photos and artwork.
*Full Album Stream Listen to all of Challengers more than 2 months ahead of release
*3 previously unreleased B-Sides
*Advance notice and exclusive ticket buy links for upcoming New Pornographers dates

speaking of which, there's a bunch of New Pornographers shows that are 4-real-confirmed.   And if you'd like a crack at purchasing tickets a week before the general public, your participation in the 'Challengers' portion of Buy Early, Get Now will allow you to do so starting tomorrow. 

Cliffbos, Mandybos and Humperdinkbos

Sir Cliff

From yesterday's Guardian:

A new weapon in the fight against antisocial youth has been discovered: Cliff Richard records.

The organisers of a travelling funfair have found that a few bars of The Young Ones is enough to instantly disperse a gang of unruly teenagers.

"You don't really need Asbos when you've got Cliffbos," said Seth Carter from the family-run Carters Steam Fair.

Last Saturday the travelling funfair was in Hayes, Essex, when Mr Carter became concerned about the intimidating behaviour of a gang of about 20 teenagers dressed in hoodies.

The fair's ploy is the latest use of sonic warfare in tackling antisocial behaviour.

Last year the Local Government Association urged councils to use the "Manilow method" to break up gangs. The recommendation came after the authorities in Sydney, Australia drove away gangs in car parks by playing them Copacabana and Mandy.

The LGA produced a list of 20 songs that would deter teenagers. Top of the list was Release Me, by Englebert Humperdinck. Cliff Richard's Mistletoe and Wine appeared at number 19.



Imitation Is The Sincerest Form Of Saying "I Have No Ideas Of My Own"

the real thing :
Michael Palmieri's
video for The New Pornographers' "Sing Me Spanish Techno"

In the words of SF Weekly's Brock Keeling, "With all due respect to the plagiarist(s) of the latter, the former is way superior." 

We couldn't put it better ourselves. Not without profanity, anyway.  (Thanks to Nils and Michael for the tip)

Second Prize Is Roger Daltrey

Perhaps not as inappropriate as the Chan-hating jerk on eBay that was flogging a Gary Numan autographed Squire strat, but comical just the same. 

Q: How Many Copies Of Wilco's 'Sky Blue Sky' Can You Fit Into A VW?

A: Depends. Do you mean the double vinyl version, the standard CD or the CD/DVD configuration?


With Wilco's decision to license new music to Volkswagen, there's been a bit of knee-jerktastic reaction on the worldwidewebby thing, and in the midst of such hysteria, Jeff Tweedy's brother-in-law Danny Miller writes, "from the outcries I’ve seen on several sites, you’d think Wilco had licensed “She’s a Jar” to sell Kraft mayonnaise, “Nothing’s Ever Gonna Stand In My Way” to hawk Viagra, or “I’m the Man Who Loves You” to promote the North American Man-Boy Love Association."

Not that there'd be anything wrong with that. Earlier in his post, Miller tackles VW's historical roots.

I was waiting to see how long it would take the increasingly hysterical fans on the Wilco site to mention Volkswagen’s checkered past. It happened on page 11 of the thread and then flared up big time. Yes, Volkswagen was a large German company that obviously had ties to the Third Reich during World War II. It’s not a history that they hide nor is it one that they stress (to do so would be marketing suicide). Of course there is no connection today between the Volkswagen Company of America (the sponsors of the current spots) and National Socialism but I’ll leave it at that—I have no interest in becoming an apologist for the past moral failings of Volkswagen or any other company. On the other hand, if I was meting out judgment, I might hurl even more at the American companies that got into bed with the Nazis in the 1930s and 40s such as the Ford Motor Company which was headed by the vile anti-Semite Henry Ford. I’d also ponder the cowardice of the Jewish movie moguls in Hollywood who were so worried about offending the lucrative German market after Hitler first took power that they would make it a point to always show Germans in a good light and to avoid making films with Jewish themes. And how about the questionable wartime activities of the Coca-Cola company as it exploited its successful German market even during the war?

Excellent points all around, sir.   Everyone is entitled to make his or her own decision about which companies they support (hey, like ours!) and what is or isn't morally defensible. And while I personally have no quarrel with Wilco being paid by Volkswagen (just so long as they got paid a bundle --- helps the rest of us trying to establish market value), I would encourage everyone reading this to boycott the Ford Motor Company.  True, the Henry Ford Era was a long time ago, but the company continues it's association with a contemporary figure almost as virulent  --- Toby Keith. 

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