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Colin Stetson 2011 Fall Tour + Video Release

To say Colin Stetson has come into his own in 2011 would be an understatement. February 2011 saw the release of Colin's highly acclaimed solo album New History Warfare Vol. 2: Judges, broadly received as a sonic, conceptual, compositional and technical tour de force. Thanks to his trajectory as a session and guest player with a diverse crop of iconoclastic pop/rock practitioners ­– Tom Waits, Laurie Anderson, TV On The Radio, Arcade Fire – as well as his own tenure in bands like Sway Machinery and Bell Orchestre, Stetson was poised to bridge the gap between contemporary rock and more rarified currents of avant jazz. With the Judges album, he did just that, garnering high praise from the both the jazz and pop/rock worlds.

Colin's astounding physical engagement with his instruments (chiefly bass and alto saxophones) produces emotionally rich and polyphonic compositions that transcend expectations of what solo horn playing can sound like. Stetson is equally at home in the avant jazz tradition of players who have pushed the boundaries of the instrument through circular breathing, embouchure, etc. (i.e. Evan Parker, Mats Gustafsson) and at the nexus of noise/drone/minimalist music that encompasses genres like dark metal, post-rock and contemporary electronics (i.e. Tim Hecker, Ben Frost – both of whom have mixed or remixed Stetson recordings).

Stetson's non-stop gigging at SXSW 2011 (on the NPR, Pitchfork and Pop Montreal stages) led to hundreds of dropped jaws and just as many superlatives about the man's mind-altering, heart-rending music: how it defies both genre boundaries and the physical boundaries of what one person can sonically generate in live performance with a single acoustic instrument, without recourse to looping pedals or other effects.

Through the 30-odd solo performances delivered in the wake of the Judges release in spring 2011, Colin continued delving into new compositions and especially more long-form trance/transcendental explorations. Having premiered a couple of these new songs at a small art gallery show in Montreal in May 2011, we were duly blown away (along with everyone else in the room) and encouraged Colin to record them while still in their raw, stamina-testing glory. He agreed and brought in good friend (and now Grammy-winning engineer) Mark Lawson (Arcade Fire, Islands) to help capture the performances in Stetson's own basement rehearsal/studio space.

The two pieces on this new EP both clock in at 10 minutes and are documented in direct fashion, using a handful of mic positions and, as usual, no looping or overdubbing of any sort. They are brilliant single-take performances that showcase Stetson's love for minimalism, a subtle pop sensibility, and a mesmerising, mantric, time-warping technical ability.

Those Who Didn't Run EP is an amazing addition to what will no doubt be an expanding Colin Stetson discography in coming years; a wonderfully-realized portrait of Colin's solo playing before he embarks on a year's worth of touring as part of Bon Iver's live band.

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Tour Dates

8/12 - 92Y Tribeca - New York, NY *
8/23 - Wadsworth Atheneum Museum of Art - Hartford, CT *
8/24 - Delilah's - Ithaca, NY
8/25 - Casbah Lounge - Hamilton, CA
8/26 - The Drake Hotel - Toronto, ON
8/27 - Zaphod Beeblebrox - Ottawa, CA
8/28 - Le Cercle - Quebec, CA
9/2 - Il Motore - Montreal, QC *
10/1 - ATP Festival - Asbury Park, NJ
10/3 - Burlington City Arts Center - Burlington, VT

*8.12 – w/Callers
*8.23 – 8.28 – w/Emily Wells
*9.2 – w/Rebecca Foon

The Mahavishnu Project presents THE COMPLETE "VISIONS OF THE EMERALD BEYOND"

THE MAHAVISHNU PROJECT: Gregg Bendian, drums / Glenn Alexander, guitar / Neil Alexander, keyboards / Jim Cammack, bass / Chern Hwei, electric violin / Melissa Stylianou, voice / Pete Furlan, saxophones / Jon Weber, violin / Will Hakim, viola / Leigh Stuart, cello

The Mahavishnu Project is the only jazz repertory ensemble of its kind to receive the endorsement of guitarist/composer John McLaughlin and ALL of the original members of The Mahavishu Orchestra. In fact, keyboardist Jan Hammer hired MahaProj to be his band for the night at MoogFest 2006 in NYC- his only US appearance in over 15 years.

The Mahavishnu Project typically presents "complete album evenings" such as "The Complete Birds of Fire" or "The Complete Inner Mounting Flame." Of late the band is presenting a 35th anniversary concert of Mahavishnu's "Visions of the Emerald Beyond", known to fans and historians alike as the pinnacle of the 1970's jazz fusion movement - boldly combining elements of jazz, rock, classical, Indian music and free-form sonic exploration. In 2008, The Mahavishnu Project released "Return to the Emerald Beyond" on Cuneiform Records. It is a reverent re-imagining of the entire original Emerald Beyond music from start to finish and includes encores from "Birds of Fire" and "Inner Mounting Flame."

“Just a little note of appreciation for what you are bringing back to life. This musical period was the beginning of finding my own way in music, and to hear you guys playing those tunes in such an unbelievable way is quite amazing. Great job!! Keep up the good work.”

-John McLaughlin

JESSE GRESS with members of the Mahavishnu Project will be performing the music of Jeff Beck and Jan Hammer.

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Friday, June 10, 2011 

Doors: 8:00 pm

Show: 9:00 pm

Tickets: $20 General Admission

The Mahavishnu Project presents THE COMPLETE "VISIONS OF THE EMERALD BEYOND"

The Mahavishnu Project is the only jazz repertory ensemble of its kind to receive the endorsement of guitarist/composer John McLaughlin and ALL of the original members of The Mahavishu Orchestra. In fact, keyboardist Jan Hammer hired MahaProj to be his band for the night at MoogFest 2006 in NYC- his only US appearance in over 15 years.

The Mahavishnu Project typically presents "complete album evenings" such as "The Complete Birds of Fire" or "The Complete Inner Mounting Flame." Of late the band is presenting a 35th anniversary concert of Mahavishnu's "Visions of the Emerald Beyond", known to fans and historians alike as the pinnacle of the 1970's jazz fusion movement - boldly combining elements of jazz, rock, classical, Indian music and free-form sonic exploration. In 2008, The Mahavishnu Project released "Return to the Emerald Beyond" on Cuneiform Records. It is a reverent re-imagining of the entire original Emerald Beyond music from start to finish and includes encores from "Birds of Fire" and "Inner Mounting Flame."

“Just a little note of appreciation for what you are bringing back to life. This musical period was the beginning of finding my own way in music, and to hear you guys playing those tunes in such an unbelievable way is quite amazing. Great job!! Keep up the good work.” -John McLaughlin

JESSE GRESS with members of the Mahavishnu Project will be performing the music of Jeff Beck and Jan Hammer.

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The Mahavishnu Project presents THE COMPLETE "VISIONS OF THE EMERALD BEYOND"

Opening Act Jesse Gress

Tonight's opening act, JESSE GRESS with members of the Mahavishnu Project will perform the music of Jeff Beck and Jan Hammer.

Friday, June 10, 2011

Doors: 8:00 pm

Show: 9:00 pm

Tickets: $20 General Admission

Afrobeta Debut Album Out August 9th

Miami’s avant-dance duo recently announced the release of their debut full-length, Under The Streets, along with the first track from the album, “Nighttime.” Now the band has released a futuristic new video, for “Play House,” directed by Dutch director Ruben Van Leer, along with the details for the “Play House” single, which sees a digital release today (May 10th) on iTunes, Beatport and Amazon. The single will come packaged along with remixes by NYC legend Larry Tee, and Alexander Technique & Junior Sanchez!

Afrobeta’s unique (and diverse) sound transcends genre classifications. Cuci’s rapid-fire delivery, combined with Smurphio’s funky synths and head-bopping basslines, will keep you moving from start to finish on Under The Streets. The thirteen tracks that make up their debut album will undoubtedly ignite dance-floors around the world-the band has a sound that is universally irresistible.

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Click HERE or the Single Art Below to Watch the Futuristic Video For “Play House”

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Under The Streets Tracklisting:

Two Different Worlds
Do You Party?
Nighttime
As Long As You Like It
Play House
That Thing
Touch
Land Of Lost Lovers
Pistol Whip
Love Fur Life
Jealousy
The End
Love Is Magic

My Morning Jacket Team Up With Todd Haynes for AmEx' "UNSTAGED"

My Morning Jacket is honored to announce they are joining forces with award-winning filmmaker Todd Haynes for the latest edition of “Unstaged: An Original Series from American Express.” In partnership with YouTube and VEVO, “Unstaged” features some of the music industry’s most breakthrough artists playing at landmark venues across the country, while tapping some of today’s most influential filmmakers to direct the live-streams and using digital and social media to connect the online audience to the live shows in unexpected ways. Interactive digital features are set to be unveiled in the coming weeks.

Haynes will film the band’s performance at Louisville’s historic Palace Theater, which will be live-streamed at 9:00pm EST at www.youtube.com/mymorningjacketVEVO on Tuesday May 31st.

Additionally, fans can watch a special video on My Morning Jacket’s upcoming live-stream performance.

This marks the second collaboration between the director and the group, as My Morning Jacket’s Jim James appeared in Haynes’ Academy Award-nominated film I’m Not There.  Previous performers in American Express’ “Unstaged” series  include Arcade Fire directed by Terry Gilliam, John Legend & The Roots directed by Spike Lee, Sugarland directed by Kenny Ortega, and Duran Duran directed by David Lynch.

My Morning Jacket will release Circuital, their sixth full-length album, on May 31st via ATO Records.  Head over to their Facebook page to hear two new songs,  the first single “Holdin on to Black Metal” and the title track “Circuital.

The New York Times spoke to Haynes about “Unstaged” for a story posted this morning.  Click HERE to read the piece for further insight into the collaboration from the director himself.

The Chain Gang of 1974 Set To Release Wayward Fire June 21

After self-releasing two albums over the past several years and receiving early praise from the likes of SPIN, The FADER, RCRD LBL, Brooklyn Vegan, and more, The Chain Gang of 1974 is ready to break out with Wayward Fire! Set for release June 21st on Modern Art, this is an album as restless as The Chain Gang of 1974’s White Guts, an album which funneled three years of instrument-swapping, sample-splicing experience into a lean focused listen, but it melds the standout moments from that release into something wholly new and realized. In creating this new album, The Chain Gang of 1974’s genre-jumping singer/multi-instrumentalist Kamtin Mohager moved from Denver to Los Angeles, severed the ties of the two-year relationship that fueled Wayward Fire, and raised the curtain on what’s next, proving that this particular film has just begun.

On Wayward Fire, the laser-guided synth lines of “Undercover” and the rather epic “Hold On”—crowd pleasers that hint at everything from LCD Soundsystem to Talking Heads—make perfect sense alongside such shifting soundscapes as the shimmering keys of “Don’t Walk Away,” the hands-in-the-air hooks of “Taste of Heaven,” and the choruses that cut through the rain clouds in “Matter of Time.” Of course, it doesn’t hurt that Mohager balances his minor-key melodies with bold, bloodletting lyrics.

In the lead up to this release, The Chain Gang of 1974 will play select dates on the west coast with Jamaica. Dates are below.

Born in San Jose and raised in Hawaii, Mohager spent his first 13 years playing inline hockey and dreaming of being drafted by the NHL. He was surrounded by music growing up, but not the Beatles or anything of that nature – more along the lines of the Persian records his parents played all the time, leaving he and his brothers to discover everything on their own. His thoughts officially shifted to music soon after a move to Colorado, all thanks to the sinking feeling he felt after seeing the final scene in Real Genius. That’d be the part where “Everybody Wants To Rule the World” kicks in, tugging at the audience’s collective heartstrings like only the finest Reagan era records can.

The Chain Gang of 1974 Tour Dates:

Sat. April 23 – Los Angeles, CA @ Echoplex

Tue. April 26 – San Francisco, CA @ The Independent w/ Jamaica

Thu. April 28 – Portland, OR @ Mississippi Studios w/ Jamaica

Fri. April 29 – Seattle, WA @ Neumos w/ Jamaica

Sat. April 30 – Vancouver, BC @ Fortune Sound Club w/ Jamaica

Sat. June 11 – Englewood, CO @ Gothic Theatre w/ Candy Claws, Bad Weather California, Fellow Citizens

Leftover Salmon Announces 2011 River Run

Summer is in the air, and with that Leftover Salmon is pleased to announce three special shows at some of the most cherished and unique venues Colorado has to offer. On June 10th & 11th, Leftover Salmon performs a two night run in the Poudre Canyon at the newly owned and operated Mishawaka Amphitheatre in Bellvue, CO.

On June 12th the festivities travel to the new State Bridge Amphitheatre in Bond, CO to honor & revisit a celebrated tradition. This intimate venue on the Colorado River holds a considerable amount of history in the Colorado music scene and was the site of many memorable LOS shows in the group’s early years. A devastating fire took the property in 2007, but the revered venue will return this summer. Leftover Salmon is honored to be performing the Grand Re-Opening Party at The New State Bridge Amphitheatre.

Fan ticketing on sale date for all shows is Saturday April 2nd.  Public on sale for State Bridge is Monday April 4th and Mishawaka Amphitheatre is Wednesday April 13th.

Brian Wright's House On Fire - Out TODAY

Sugar Hill Records is proud to continue its legacy of incredible songwriters with the release of Brian Wright’s House on Fire – out today. While this is the first label release from the Waco, TX native, he has built a firm base of fans within and beyond the music industry with two previous releases and tireless touring in the US and Europe. Unlike previous releases, which were both recorded in the studio with a band, House on Fire approaches the recording process in a much more relaxed and reflective manner, with Wright playing every instrument himself and handpicking his prolifically written songs into a mindful, well-curated collection.

And make no mistake, this album truly is about the songs. Gems like “Mean ol’ Wind” and “Live Again” convey the tenderness of the soul which very few songwriters can capture.  “Striking Matches” and “The Good Dr.” bring the driving sound of a cross-country bound train, bound for heartache or redemption. “Maria Sugarcane” paints with a Southern Gothic brush that would make Flannery O’Connor proud.

“When people ask what I sound like, I usually say I’m somewhere between Woody Guthrie and Velvet Underground,” says Wright. “This album finally allowed me to make the music the exact way it was in my head.”

After spending his early twenties on the Austin/Waco/Dallas bar circuit, playing everything from punk to covers, Wright flipped a coin to decide his future home, either New York City or Los Angeles.  Going West won the day.  Today, when not touring, he resides in Los Angeles where he is a fixture in the LA music scene.  For the last six years he has been the front man and lyricist for his band Brian Wright and the Waco Tragedies, a band that has gathered a devoted audience across the country.

Saxophonist Plunky Releases R&B CD

J. Plunky Branch's new release, Plunky On Fire, is a funk jazz concept album that burns across a wide swath of the urban contemporary music landscape. Plunky On Fire takes us on a musical journey through down-tempo funk jazz; house-tempo dance; R&B love songs; spoken word; smooth mellow jazz; novelty funk; world soul message music; live gig clips and thought leader lecturing, all on one chockfull compact disc.

Saxophonist J. Plunky Branch and his group Plunky & Oneness create musical theater that combines the quirkiness of George Clinton and the musicality of George Duke with the vocal poetics of Jill Scott and Gil Scott Heron. Plunky's words and melodies are crafted over hip-hop influenced instrumental tracks produced by his son, Jamiah “Fire” Branch, hence the double entendre CD title.

The father-son duo has produced an album of 14 new songs that are both retro and ultramodern, a new organic-techno soul music that is jazzy, funky and highly danceable. Two songs are targeted for initial airplay: "On Fire," a hot, sax driven dance instrumental with a vocal hook; and "Inside These Walls" a quiet storm love song featuring Chyp Green on lead vocals.

Released on his own N.A.M.E. Brand Records label, this, Plunky's 25th album, will be available at CDBaby.com and all the most popular online sites, including i-tunes, Rhapsody and Napster. CD’s will be distributed to record stores by Liaison Record Distributors of Maryland. The March 29th release date also kicks off the Plunky & Oneness promotional touring in support of the new CD.

Plunky & Oneness is one of the most versatile and enduring funk jazz groups, having toured in the Mid-Atlantic region of the US, in Europe, Africa and the Caribbean for over 25 years. They have appeared in concert and at festivals with some of the biggest names in Black music, including Earth Wind & Fire, Frankie Beverly & Maze, B.B. King, Patti Labelle, Ray Charles, LL Cool J, Chuck Brown, Wyclef Jean and many others.

Plunky has also been active in music education and arts and culture presentations and some of his insights on aesthetics and African concepts of the groove are presented as interludes on the album. His positive empowerment and political messages are infused in the lyrics of several of the songs as well. He comments, "I just think it’s important to inspire people to reach for their highest aspirations and I believe it can be done while we're having fun; what some call partying with a purpose."

Plunky On Fire presents R&B as art music and this concept extends to the CD cover as well. The original portrait of Plunky on the front was painted by French artist, Dan Brussat; and the inside photograph taken at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts was shot by the design and layout artist, Danja Mowf. On this album the music and the art are hot like fire…

Web site: www.plunkyone.com CD Link: www.cdbaby.com/cd/plunky

Émilie Simon Collaborates With Arcade Fire Director Vincent Morisset

For the launch of her forthcoming album, The Big Machine, Émilie Simon worked with Canadian director Vincent Morisset, whose pioneering work on cinematic interactivity with Arcade Fire earned praises worldwide. Vincent and Émilie were introduced by Jeremy  from Arcade Fire who also plays on The Big Machine. The two decided to collaborate on a series of interactive videos to illustrate four tracks from the album. With the help of photographer John Londono and illustrator Caroline Robert, they spent a day in Brooklyn capturing various moods of the city. The result is a series of interactive videos utilizing phenakistiscope, an old animation device that uses the persistence of retina to create images juxtaposition. Each of the four films is unique (“Chinatown” has an interactive sampler and octopus animation that are triggered when you click on the octopus, when you click on the wall in “Dreamland” it makes feathers fall etc). The videos premiered on InterviewMagazine.com today and can also be seen here.

One of France's most renowned artists, Émilie Simon, launched her career in 2003 and immediately captured the imagination of a large audience with her sprawling and elegant musical fantasies, earning three Victoires de la Musique (France’s Grammy equivalent) during the course of her first three albums. She gained international acclaim for scoring the smash documentary March of the Penguins and saw her first US release in 2006 with The Flower Book. In 2008, she relocated to Brooklyn where she recorded her new album The Big Machine surrounding herself with talented guests such as Kelly Pratt and Jeremy Gara (Arcade Fire) as well as Jon Natchez (Beirut) or Mark Plati (David Bowie, The Cure, Brazilian Girls).

Her iconic style has made her a respected voice in fashion. She is often seen donning dresses by Yeojin Bae, Jean-Paul Gauthier or Vivienne Westwood and collaborated with Paule Ka to design her stage attire. She blazes her own trail aesthetically, incorporating vintage clothing or up and coming designers to more established names, toying with fashion as she does with sounds.