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   Thursday, July 24, 2003  
"These days, Bananarama is considered 'old music.' That's sort of a strange phenomenon." - LazyEye catches up with Matt Ward mid-tour...

...where he's opening for and backed by Rilo Kiley. A super-tantalising prospect, reallyrather's enjoyment must sadly remain vicarious courtesy of witnesses such as these:
'I came to see Rilo Kiley but ended up transfixed by M. ward' | Salt Lake City
'Have no prior experience to compare to, but I thought [RK's] set was great. Jenny Lewis played the first song solo from the balcony!' | San Francisco

According to 30music, 'Iron and Wine will release their next full-length, Sea and the Rhythm, September 9 on Sub Pop. They are currently working on the album in Chicago at Engine Studios with producer, Brian Deck.'

That'll be a week after Super Tuesday then, Sept 2 seeing the release of
- Okkervil River's Down the River of Golden Dreams | mp3
- Nadine's Strange seasons produced by Matt Pence, the drummer from
- Centro-matic whose own Love You Just the Same drops the same day. As you'd hope, it's getting their new label Misra all excited: 'A jaw-dropping collection of rock anthems.. the band pulls off a kind of alchemy, effortlessly fusing indie crash and power-pop crackle into what feels, for all the world, like the new classic rock'. 'Crikey!' is the only word, really...

Centro-matic mainman Will Johnson is interviewed in St.Louis' Riverfront Times ahead of their show with local heroes Nadine: "Maybe we've released too much, I don't know. When I sit behind a merch table, I'll have all the CDs, and I try to write a detailed description of each to orient people. But I've seen people come up and shrug their shoulders at the sheer number of records."

Shoulder-shrugging is perhaps the commonest reaction to the annual Mercury Music Prize shortlist. 2003 prove's no exception being most interesting in terms of betting. reallyrather's belief that the Athlete album was a cert for the list was borne out - but is it a winner? At 9/1 it's a good price but the album, tho' filled with accessible, eclectic pop undermined marketing-wise by the band's complete anonymity, just doesn't have the edge that this jury seems to go for. (Hang on though - Gomez, anyone?!)
Dizzee Rascal meanwhile has more edge than the White Cliffs of Dover, but if The Streets couldn't crack it last year why should this charmless cacophany? Definite losers are The Thrills (who should have that name taken away from them right now), Soweto Kinch, Radiohead, Eliza Carthy, Floetry and Terri Walker. Which leaves us with Coldplay, LemonJelly, Martina Topley-Bird and The Darkness. Plenty of time for conclusions, though. To be continued (probably)...

"People are idiots. We have an incredibly lazy critical class and a morbidly disinterested listening audience." Yep, it's shy, retiring Steve Albini putting his head above the parapet for a change in a feature about Nina Nastasia in the latest Willamette Week (Portland, Or.). "The problem with talking about Nina," says Steve, "is when you describe her, it sounds like you're describing pure shit..."

Oh yes, here's a sample track from that new Centro-matic album...
   posted by SMc at 5:58 AM |