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   Friday, July 26, 2002  
Tim and Greg, songwriting engines behind West Coast heroes the Mother Hips, put out an acoustic duo album of new material, Ballpoint birds, Aug 10. "It's a pretty folk-oriented record," says Greg. "It's sort of like the more mellow acoustic songs on any of our records. It's very mild, and it really concentrates on the songs and the vocals". Hmm..the words 'Crosby,' 'Stills,' and 'Nash' spring to mind, even more so in the case of putative supergroup The Thorns[?]. Down on the ranch in--yup--California, Matthew Sweet, Shawn Mullins and roots-rocker Pete Droge recently got together and rustled up a dozen 'old school acoustic' compositions which it's hoped will get a release in '03...

Day jobs of the Stars No3:
"It used to be called selling out but I call it survival." Austin pop kid - sorry, grown-up bloke with responsibilities - Darin Murphy talks about the art of TV ad jingle-writing. See/hear his latest star turn selling sandwiches nationwide. Better still, get his own albums - reallyrather weekend revision: Solitarium...

Still in Austin, RiverCityNews anticipates a modest little 2-day music fest. there in Sept. Lots of up&coming acts looking for a break - Wilco, Ryan Adams, Jayhawks, Caitlin, Emmylou, Gillian, etc, etc... $35/£22 for a 2-day ticket! Maybe it'll rain...

Small world, etc...
the damnwells support Josh Rouse on US dates thru Aug...and Centro-matic will be touring with The Bigger Lovers in September. As far as reallyrather is aware, the only place these acts have met before!

UK gig action update:
Beachwood Sparks
Aug 6 Spitz, London
Aug 7 Barfly, Cardiff
Agu 8 West 13, Glasgow
Aug 9 Barfly, Sheffield
Aug 10 Princess Charlotte, Leic.
Aug 12 Night & Day, Manchester
Aug 19 93 Feet East, London
The Tyde
Aug 19 93 Feet East, London
Aug 20 Cherry Jam, London
Aug 21 The Social, Nottingham
Aug 23 West 13, Glasgow
Aug 25 The Walk, Newcastle
Aug 26 The Freebutt, Brighton
Aug 27 Water Rats, London
Sep 26 Brighton, TBA
Sep 27 London, Queen Elizabeth Hall
Sep 28 Fareham, Ashcroft
Sep 30 Dublin, Spirit
Oct 1 Birmingham, Ceol Castle
Oct 2 Milton Keynes, Stables
Oct 3 Salisbury, Arts Center
Oct 4 Leicester, International Arts Center
Oct 7 Sheffield, Boardwalk
Oct 8 Edinburgh, TBA
Oct 9 Glasgow, Arches
Oct10 The Cluny, Newcastle Upon Tyne
Sep 19 Manchester, Night & Day
Set 20 Birmingham, Academy
Sep 21 Aberdeen, Lemon Tree
Sep 22 Edinburgh, Labelle Angel
Sep 24 Leicester, The Charlotte
Sep 25 Bristol, Fleece
Sep 26 London, Dingwalls
Sep 28 Tunbridge Wells, Forum
(The Philly four-piece gamely take on all-comers - and Aerosmith - with their new anthemic swagger, deaf to those lamenting the demise of the 'old' Marah sound. "Wot, no Slo Mo?" they cry, mourning the squeezing out of dobro ace Mike Brenner. But what's this? Barfly, Camden Aug 12: 'Slo-Mo'. Could it be the "techno-dobro mad scientist" himself?)

A couple of one-offs:
Perky folk-popsters The Waifs play the Union Chapel, Islington Aug 22, maybe touting new (Oz-only) 5-track EP London still. They just filed a lengthy update on what's been happening ("..a film crew was shooting a Japanese porn movie in the room next door..")
...and Hope Sandoval plays the Bloomsbury Theatre Sept 13...

Big Polyphonic Spree feature in today's Independent; this time last week it was the Be Goods. Crikey, look smart Starlings,TN, could be you next!
   posted by SMc at 11:48 AM |