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.

Sonic Youth - exclusive tickets presale TODAY for Buy Early Get Now customers


Buy Early Get Now customers get exclusive presale access to tickets for the upcoming US Sonic Youth dates. First, preorder the record. Then go to to get your tickets. First access to tickets anywhere!

Sonic Youth On BBC's "Later WIth Jools Holland" (AGAIN)

Since the iPlayer isn't happening for those of us without UK IP addresses, the below clip will have to do.

Mogwai DJing on air and online this week

[Photo of Mogwai at the Music Hall of Williamsburg last night by Ryan Muir]

Tonights' Music Hall of Williamsburg show is the second of Mogwai's three sold out shows in Brooklyn. They're taking some time while in town to DJ at some nearby radio stations

Tonight at 6:30PM EST, tune into WNYU's New Afternoon Show for a DJ set and interview with Stuart. WNYU can be found on 89.1 for listeners in the New York City and streaming at for the rest.

Tomorrow afternoon, Stuart will bring his playlist to East Village Radio, starting at 2:30 PM EST.

Don't miss it!

Catch Mogwai on their remaining dates and take advantage of the Hawk Is Howling CD+DVD/ticket bundle while you still can.

Tuesday     28    Brooklyn, NY     Music Hall Of Williamsburg
Wednesday     29    Brooklyn, NY     Music Hall Of Williamsburg
Friday     01    Boston, MA     Wilbur Theatre
Saturday     02    Northampton, MA     Pearl Street
Sunday     03    Montreal, QC     Metropolis
Monday     04    Toronto, ON     The Phoenix
Tuesday     05    Buffalo, NY     The Tralf Music Hall
Wednesday     06    Pontiac, MI     Crofoot Ballroom
Friday     08    Chicago, IL     Congress Theater
Saturday     09    Milwaukee, WI     Turner Hall
Sunday     10    Minneapolis, MN     First Avenue
Monday     11    Omaha, NE     Slowdown
Tuesday     12    Denver, CO     Bluebird Theater
Wednesday     13    Salt Lake City, UT     In The Venue
Friday     15    Solana Beach, CA     Belly Up Tavern
Saturday     16    Los Angeles, CA     Orpheum Theatre
Sunday     17    San Francisco, CA     Grand Ballroom

The Sonic Youth and The Jools Holland and The BBC



Photos courtesy of David Emery

After slaying London's Scala last night playing an intimate gig to their nearest and dearest, Sonic Youth make the jump tonight into the live TV world.  Tonight the band will be performing a track from The Eternal live on Later... With Jools Holland at 10pm on BBC2.  After the show you'll be able to watch again via the BBC's iPlayer.

Check out some vintage Youth footage from the first time they were on Later...

Tonight with added Ibold !

Stephen Malkmus and Ian Svenonius in Indie Hearthrob-off

Here's the first segment of a four-part Soft Focus interview with Stephen Malkmus. I always envisioned to "Hopscotch Willy" from Real Emotional Trash to look something like Svenonius, and this really brings it home for me. Visit VBS for subsequent segments.

Shearwater : Yellow Bike Project Benefit, May 21

Though Shearwater are in the midst of recording the followup to 2008's 'Rook', the band are taking time from a busy international schedule to play a May 21 benefit for Austin's Yellow Bike Project at Red 7.  YBP is  is a community supported ALL-VOLUNTEER 501(c)(3) non-profit organization dedicated to providing human-powered transportation for the people of Austin, running a community bike shop, and educating kids and adults.  Here's some more info courtesy a recent KLRU documentary short ;

Snapshot Central : Mission Of Burma Mixing


Photograph courtesy Bob Weston.  Left-to-right, Peter Prescott, Roger Miller, Clint Conley.  Not shown : technical advisor Dick Urine II.

Sonic Youth Buy Early Get Now now available for online ordering


For the last month, you've been able to sign up for the Sonic Youth Buy Early Get Now at participating physical retailers.

Starting today, you can order online, either directly from the Matador Store or via other online retailers such as Insound, or if you're in Europe, our UK mail order site.

Album stream goes live tomorrow (April 28), the first bonus MP3 goes up May 12, second bonus MP3 goes up June 2, and you get the album, the bonus live vinyl LP and the limited-edition poster on release date, June 9 (or June 8 for those of you in Europe).

ALSO - for those of you who manage to get in there this week, there will be early access to presale tickets for the summer tour. Don't miss out - preorder now.

Reminder: when you sign up online, you need to wait for a return email with your login code. Then you go to the site to get your stuff.

Here are those tour dates:

June 28th – Chicago, IL – Vic Theater
June 29th – Royal Oak, MI – Royal Oak Music Theatre
July 2nd – Philadelphia, PA – Electric Factory
July 3rd – New York, NY – United Palace Theatre
July 6th – Washington, DC – 9:30 Club
July 8th – Richmond, VA – The National
July 10th – Knoxville, TN – Bijou Theater
July 11th – Nashville, TN – War Memorial
July 12th – Birmingham, AL – Sloss Furnaces
July 13th – Atlanta, GA – Variety Playhouse
July 15th – Dallas, TX – House of Blues
July 16th – Tulsa, OK – Cain’s
July 18th – Kansas City, MO – Uptown Theater
July 20th – Milwaukee, WI – Turner Hall
July 21st – Minneapolis, MN – First Ave
July 23rd – Boise, ID – Knitting Factory
July 25th – Seattle, WA – Capitol Hill Block Party
July 28th – Portland, OR – Roseland Ballroom
July 30th – Salt Lake City, UT – Twilight Music Fest
July 31st – Denver, CO – Ogden Theater
August 2nd – Oakland, CA – Fox Theater

more coming soon.

God Help The Girl - Come Monday Night MP3


The first MP3 from God Help The Girl (a story set to music by Stuart Murdoch of Belle and Sebastian) is "Come Monday Night."

You can download it here:

Come Monday Night (mp3)

For more information, visit, where you can watch a short movie about the making of this album, including auditions, interviews, studio footage and more. Sign up for the mailing list and keep checking back, because we'll have exciting subscription news with delicious extras there soon.

Condo Fucks' Salute To Jon Bernhardt, June 21

Many years ago, I used to answer telephones at WMBR.  Never would I have imagined  during the station's oh-so-cool early '80's they would one day see fit to recognize a bunch of talented musicians from Connecticut.  But enough about Death Threat, it seems the Condo Fucks are playing an WMBR-related event in the near future.


WMBR DJ Jon Bernhardt will celebrate his 25th anniversary with the morning Breakfast of Champions radio program on June 26, from 8-10 a.m. To mark this auspicious occasion, he has convinced the bands that have been played the most on his program to perform at a pair of benefit concerts at two Boston area clubs. UK legend Bevis Frond will play in his only U.S. appearance on Sunday, June 21 at TT the Bear's along with the Condo Fucks and Sleepyhead. Versus reunites to play Church with Rebecca Gates (The Spinanes) and more guests TBA, on Saturday, June 27. Proceeds will benefit WMBR. Tickets for both shows are on sale now.

Sunday, June 21, TT the Bear's, 10 Brookline St., Cambridge
The Bevis Frond - #1 on Bernhardt's career playlist - makes a rare appearance, having last played the United States in 2002. Matador recording artists the Condo Fucks feature all three members of Bernhardt's #2 band, Yo La Tengo. Sleepyhead, who released a song that tied for #1 on the list, opens.

Saturday, June 27, Church, 69 Kilmarnock St., Boston
Versus, who haven't played in Boston since 2003, and are the #4 band on the list, reunite especially for the occasion. Also appearing is Rebecca Gates, whose band The Spinanes, released the other song tied for #1. More artists TBA.

Spaghetti with lemon


Jeez, not another Ruth Rogers pasta recipe. This one is absurdly simple and relies on the quality of the ingredients and your instincts in combining them at the right time and at the right temperature.

Slowly stir the zest and juice of two lemons into 1/2 lb freshly grated reggiano until you have a thick sauce. Add enough olive oil to make a thick, creamy consistency. Add salt and pepper and keep tasting, adding more oil if the sauce is too astringent. Cook 2/3 lb spaghetti in salted boiling water until al dente, and then drain, reserving 2 tbs of the cooking water (very important). Return to the warm pan, stir in the sauce making sure to coat every strand, and then add the reserved cooking water, loosening the mixture and completing the marriage of sauce and pasta. Add 4 tbs roughly chopped basil, and serve immediately with extra reggiano.

Good, real reggiano and excellent, completely fresh olive oil and basil are essential.

Until Randy "O" Does Shakespeare In The Park, This Will Have To Do

It would be an exaggeration to claim most of my non-Matador related posts for the Matablog are culled from that awesome treasure trove of metallic press releases, Just as it would be the height of hyperbole to say I visit said site 5, 6, maybe 7 times a day. Even so, the 'Mouth provides a daily glimpse into an alternate musical universal where somewhere on this planet (quite possibly in Eastern Europe), news of Rudy Sarzo's advances in digital animation are eagerly absorbed.

Today, Blabbermouth informs us that L.A. Guns vocalist* Phil Lewis has the lead role in "Witchmaster General", a motion picture hopefully described as a "supernatural thriller".


Lewis plays Dr. Gorgon, a charming but sinister witchdoctor who uses his evil powers — as well as his close personal relationship with Satan — to run a sort of "murder-for-hire" business. A tough-as-nails cop (Martino) and the county coroner (Bud Stafford of "Grave Danger") are hot on his trail, but are no match for the power he possesses or the evil he unleashes upon them.

"The film is a nice mix of great old-fashioned haunted house horror and all the sex, violence, and dark humor we've come to expect these days," says filmmaker Jim Haggerty of his fourth feature film. "It's kind of like an old Vincent Price movie on acid."

As a longtime fan of L.A. GUNS, Haggerty is extremely delighted to have the opportunity to work with one of his musical heroes. "I have always been such a fan of Phil in L.A. GUNS," he says. "He was — and really still is — such an exciting performer with such great charisma and talent on top of an amazing voice. He really was the right man for the job and it was an honor and a pleasure to work with him on this — I'm already writing the sequel!"

(* - I should stress that neither I nor Matador Records is taking sides in the dispute over the ownership of the L.A. Guns name.  Los Angeles has the greatest copyright / entertainment attorneys in the world and we fully believe in letting them do what they do best). 

Earles & Jensen limited vinyl LP of outtakes


On May 5 we will be releasing an ultra-limited single LP of outtakes by Earles & Jensenfrom last year's smash comedy album Just Farr A Laugh. Entitled Just Farr The Record, it will be available for preorder very soon. There are only 300 copies with handmade sleeves and they will go FAST, so keep checking that link.

Here is a preview, entitled "It's A Freak Show:"

It's A Freak Show (MP3)

As they say in France, "Enjoi"

Sonic Youth First MP3 From 'The Eternal', Secret London Show


We're pleased to launch the first MP3 from Sonic Youth's upcoming album The Eternal (June 8 Europe, June 9 North America). It's entitled "Sacred Trickster" and can be downloaded here:

Sacred Trickster (mp3)

"Sacred Trickster" is a 2:10 out-of-the gate hardcore matinee track with Kim singing salutes to French painter Yves Klein and Western Massachusetts noise artist Noise Nomads. It sets the tone for 'The Eternal', which comprises twelve tunes that are a fireworks display of Sonic Youth touchstones. From the primal no wave attack of its earliest days, to the radical chording and song structures of its '90s period, to the more focused and contemporary explorations of the last five years. This their 16th album, and their first for the Matador label, consolidates their move to a more lush, sensual sound as displayed on last album 'Rather Ripped' - but if anything punchier and cleaner, and now backstopped by the addition of Mark Ibold (Pavement, Dustdevils) on bass.

As many of you are already aware, we have a Buy Early Get Now campaign running for this release. If you preorder (& pay) for the album at selected indie retailers now, you'll get lots of extra material that won't be available if you wait until June. You get:

- a code to stream the album early, from April 28
- bonus limited exclusive vinyl live LP on street date recorded at the River To River Festival July 4th, 2008 Concert in Battery Park NYC, either in your mailbox or your favorite record store (while supplies last)
- an exclusive poster
- exclusive additional mp3 downloads of outtakes & more live material
- early access to concert tickets in the US (especially if you sign up now)

Check for more info. (After April 28, you will also be able to preorder online.)

Plus -- SECRET SHOW NEXT WEEK! We are also excited to announce that Sonic Youth will be playing an exclusive show NEXT MONDAY, 27 April, at The Scala, tickets available to purchase online from 10am tomorrow Tuesday 21 April, £25, doors 7.30pm.

US tour dates this summer should be announced very soon. New Yorkers can see the band play at the annual noise fest No Fun on May 16.

Finally, news just in that the band have been confirmed to play at the My Bloody Valentine-curated ATP Nightmare Before Christmas to be held at Butlins Holiday Resort in Minehead from December 4th - 6th, 2009.

Do They Know It's Record Store Day? (redux)

Discos Exitos
Some of you may remember last year's excursion to the outer reaches of Record Store Day, so this year I decided to give another outer-burrough a shot at Record Store Day. After stopping by Other Music and the Academy Annex , picking up some amazing limited edition records (and failing to find the new Fresh & Onlys LP) I hopped on the subway deep into Queens in search of NYC's best cumbia, champeta, rebajada and technocumbia shops.

We got off at the Junction Blvd. stop to find that the most-recommended music spot in the neighborhood, Discos Medellin, has been order closed by Police Order! Do the police know it's Record store Day???

Discos Medellinpoliceorder
Anyhow, after some deeply remedial Spanish conversations, we found a few other great stores right off on Roosevelt- Pancoatl Bulmaro and Domingo records. Pancoatl was up a secret flight of stairs in the back of a barber shop and blasted the latest Mexico-via-Queens Sonidero mixes. The employees were incredibly friendly, and excited to share their favorite new CDs (no vinyl sadly) and talk about their favorite local Sonideros (dj's).  They got excited about Record Store Day, and talked a little bit about how they felt their stores were crucial hubs for people to feel connected to their home countries. Good vibes! After picking up some new Ecuadorian, Colombian and Mexican music we finished off the day with tacos at Tacos Al Suadero, easily the best Mexican food I've had since leaving San Francisco.

(Pancoatl Bulmaro)

Record Store Day: Gettin' the kids out

Record Store Day came to Brooklyn and Academy Records served up the goods, as always. The little guy couldn't go another day without the new Woods' LP "Songs of Shame" on Woodsist. He was also cultivating his new "Crystal Stilts' gaze."


Some other LPs acquired today:



Celebrate the New Dark Age


Risotto alla milanese with city ham


Admittedly not a great photo. But it was quite tasty.

I love risotto and have been meaning to make it for years, but had somehow never gotten around to it. This past weekend I made risotto with portobello mushrooms (John Thorne) and then risotto alla milanese (Marcella Hazan). The Thorne recipe turned out too mushroomy for my taste... I like my risotto to be about the rice. So I turned to the milanese, which doesn't have much added besides butter, saffron, onion, reggiano and broth.

I used lamb broth because that's what I had that was homemade and unadulterated. The rice was carnaroli, which is a hybrid of arborio with a Japanese breed and dates only from 1975. It is considered the finest risotto rice, known for a slightly chewy texture. It comes vacuum packed so seems disconcertingly hard until you cut open the bag, at which point air comes out in a puff and the grains become free and loose.

The milanese was great... but there was something missing. Of course I usually have it at restaurants with osso buco, so that unctuous marrow-infused veal sauce was missing. But Hazan also recommended putting in some pancetta or prosciutto. I had neither, but I did have city ham. Even though it had been thoroughly rubbed in very non-Italian maple syrup and brown sugar, and was smoked to boot, I decided to add it. It worked! Unlike the portobellos in the Thorne recipe, the chunks of salty, smokey, partly sweetened city ham blended perfectly with the unctuous saffrony-ness of the risotto. I recommend this combination.

My Record Store Day Purchases






Numero Group compilation



Click on the images for information, except for the last one about which there is very little online... killer afrobeat from NIgeria, great organ, I think about 1970 or 1971.

What did you score on Record Store Day?

Happy Record Store Day!!!

Though nothing about the below image makes me happy, I couldn't resist sharing this photo of Steve Knutson (Rough Trade/Audika) and I wating in line for Other Music to open this morning.

On the brightest New York morning of the year so far, this is what a couple of geeks look like getting ready to SPEND SOME MONEY ON RECORDS!!!!

Matador's Record Store Day specials were slung under many an arm at Other, get to your local record store today!

Happy Record Store Day kidsssss!!!!!!!!

[caption id="attachment_4289" align="alignnone" width="480" caption="Steve threw me a life vest and saved my Record Store Day!"]Steve threw me a life vest and saved my Record Store Day![/caption]

RSD 2009 : God Save The Slightly Overweight Boney M Completists

About a year ago, I attempted to explain --- citing pivotal incidents from my own thrilling personal life --- just how important records stores were in my formative years. Were it not for being asked "do you work here?" too frequently at a couple of 'em, I could very well sign over my paycheck to a couple of these lovely establishments, whom I regularly liken to our nation's most savvy cultural documentarians (either that or very benevolent drug pushers).

That said, my own homage to record stores in no way measures up to a screed composed by Chicago resident Steve Albini for a Reckless Records advertisement earlier this week (h/t, Chicago Reader, Peter Margasak).

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