Music Hall of Williamsburg
A Benefit for Jonathan Toubin with Chain And The Gang, 5 Dollar Priest, Eleanor Friedberger, Nicole Atkins, Dorit Chrysler and theremin, Shilpa Ray, An American Dream, TWO TEARS

A Benefit for Jonathan Toubin with Chain And The Gang, 5 Dollar Priest, Eleanor Friedberger, Nicole Atkins, Dorit Chrysler and theremin, Shilpa Ray, An American Dream, TWO TEARS

Chain And The Gang, 5 Dollar Priest, Eleanor Friedberger, Nicole Atkins, Dorit Chrysler and theremin, Shilpa Ray, An American Dream, TWO TEARS

Thu, January 12, 2012

Doors: 6:30 pm / Show: 7:30 pm

Music Hall of Williamsburg

Brooklyn, NY

$20 advance / $25 day of show

This event is 18 and over

With DJs JG Thirlwell (Foetus / Manorexia) / Jim Sclavunos (Bad Seeds / Grinderman / Silver Alert) / Mick Collins (Dirtbombs)

A Benefit for Jonathan Toubin
A Benefit for Jonathan Toubin
Jonathan Toubin, the DJ and proprietor of New York Night Train, was struck by a vehicle in his Portland, Oregon, hotel room on Thursday, December 8. He was severely injured and is still in critical condition in ICU. He is receiving outstanding care at one of the best medical facilities in Oregon. His family is with him and is grateful for the international outpouring of concern and support.

For updates on his condition, please go to www.facebook.com/IheartJT or www.iheartjt.com

Proceeds will go to benefit Jonathan.
Chain And The Gang
Chain And The Gang
"Offering a funky, stripped-down fusion of indie pop, funk, garage punk, and lo-fi experimentalism, Chain and the Gang are a vehicle for the thoughts and talents of Ian Svenonius -- musician, author, actor, Internet talk show host, and frontman with the groups Nation of Ulysses, the Make-Up, Scene Creamers, and Weird War. Like many of Svenonius' earlier projects, Chain and the Gang are a band with an overriding philosophy; as Svenonius sees it, freedom and liberty have been used by the lazy and corrupt to pollute the environment, promote greed, pit class against class, fill our cities with ugly buildings, and stuff our faces with greasy fast food, so the time has come for us to embrace a new sort of bondage and seek out convicts, hobos, and other outlaws as spiritual brethren. Svenonius has filled his new band with a handful of noted indie rock musicians, including Fred Thomas of Saturday Looks Good to Me, Brian Weber of Dub Narcotic Sound System, Brett Lyman of Bad Thoughts, and Sarah Pedal of Seahorse Liberation Army. Chain and the Gang made their recorded debut with the album Down with Liberty...Up with Chains!, released by K Records in April 2009. To support the album's release, Chain and the Gang set out on a North American tour with the Hive Dwellers, a new band featuring K Records founder and Beat Happening/Halo Benders/Dub Narcotic Sound System leader Calvin Johnson; as it happens, the Hive Dwellers feature the same backing musicians as Chain and the Gang, with Johnson replacing Svenonius as lead vocalist." - Mark Deming, AllMusicGuide
Eleanor Friedberger
Eleanor Friedberger
At a time when most female singer-songwriters perform as alter egos, Eleanor Friedberger is simply, refreshingly herself. And that’s just the way her fans like it. Having spent the last decade fronting the indie-rock institution The Fiery Furnaces (currently on hiatus) with her brother Matthew, in 2011 she emerged as a formidable solo artist with Last Summer, a thoughtfully crafted tale of memory and place couched in the organic pop of her ’70s idols. Instantly, Friedberger established herself as a modern-day heir to the tradition of Donovan, Todd Rundgren, Ronnie Lane, and their ilk: Warm, nuanced, timeless songs. No gimmicks necessary.

The title of Friedberger’s sophomore album is Personal Record, and it is, in a sense. Personal, that is. But not personal in the way of, say, a coming-of-age record, or a diary about the past, which Last Summer was. Many of the songs seem to be about love, or love lost, but whether any of the experience is hers or someone else’s, she isn’t saying. “It’s not as specific a narrative this time,” she says. “There’s a universality to it.” So incisive are the lyrics, in fact, that Friedberger’s bassist incorrectly assumed that two of the songs were about him. “I loved that,” she says. “I want him to feel like the songs are about him. I want you to feel like the songs are about you.”

The term “personal record” also refers to an athlete’s best, and the double entendre is apt. An intense decade-plus of touring and recording has burnished Friedberger’s voice and imbued her songwriting with newfound depth; there’s a maturity and mellifluousness to this outing that feels downright epic. It was always the Eleanor-penned songs that gave the Furnaces’ albums their most poignant and graceful moments, especially in later work like I’m Going Away. Last Summer took that promise into full flower; Personal Record “is part of the same growth process,” she says. Faced with a six-month gap between the completion of Last Summer and its release and accompanying tour, Friedberger holed up at home in Brooklyn; by the time the tour started, she had twelve new songs to road-test. Though most bands work this way, the Furnaces didn’t. For Friedberger, touring with the unreleased material allowed her to flesh out a more rollicking, full sound from the get-go. “By the time I came home,” she says, “I knew exactly what I wanted the songs to sound like.”

She reunited with Last Summer producer Eric Broucek (the DFA-trained emerging talent whose clients include !!!, Hercules and Love Affair, and Jonny Pierce) to expand upon the warm, textured atmosphere of their first collaboration. Tracking began in fall 2012 with a week at Plantain Studios, the West Village home of DFA. To Friedberger’s favored electric pianos and classic-rock guitars, they added a menagerie including an upright bass, an alto flute, a bass clarinet, and even a portative organ. (It’s a device made of several recorders and a bellows in a frame that looks like a wooden castle. Or, actually, like Howl’s Moving Castle.)

Production then resumed at Broucek’s home studio in the Los Angeles hills, where the rest of the record was completed in just ten days. As the songs filled out, Friedberger went full-out in immersing herself in her romantic vision of that city. “I was just listening to Fleetwood Mac and Neil Young, driving around in a borrowed Prius,” she says. “Walking along Point Dume, playing tennis at Griffith Park.... I ate hippie food every day. Lots of lentils.”

The sun-warmed languor of the West Coast and its golden age of rock ’n’ roll shines through in Personal Record. It’s the aural equivalent of an afternoon jaunt up the PCH in an orange BMW 2002, fist pumping into the wind. “When I Knew” and “Stare at the Sun” rock out like the Furnaces’ finest, but with that unmistakable Eleanor gracefulness. “Echo or Encore” is a lilting love ballad underlaid with with a bossa nova beat. “I Am the Past” evokes the mystical side of the Me Decade with meandering bass clarinet and a balls-out flute solo (seriously). Though Friedberger may harbor a bit of a ’70s fetish, there’s an idiosyncrasy and intimacy to her music that’s undeniably modern. Above all, it’s pretty. “It’s such a romantic album to me,” Friedberger says. “But more so than love for another person, it’s really about a love of music.”
Nicole Atkins
Nicole Atkins
A neon noir tour de force of hi-def late-night pop, Slow Phaser marks Nicole Atkins’ most ingenious and indelibly modern collection to date. Produced by Tore Johannson - with whom she partnered on her now-classic 2007 debut, Neptune City - the album is a milestone for the acclaimed singer/songwriter, her restless creativity fully realized via the addition of some surprising colors to her already diverse paintbox. Songs like the poptastic “Girl You Look Amazing” and the sultry “Red Ropes” positively swirl with day-glo danceability, the bright hues setting Atkins’ distinctive creative voice in a brilliant and undeniable new light. Bittersweet yet life affirming, Slow Phaser is Nicole Atkins at her confident and unpredictable best – spirited, sexy, and determinedly forward thinking.

“I wanted to make something that no one’s ever heard before,” she says, “including myself.”

A charismatic and committed live performer, Atkins followed 2011’s adventurous Mondo Amore with a long year on the road. Upon her return, the New Jersey-based artist began to rethink her overall approach. Atkins went on creative walkabout, visiting various musician friends across the country and starting a productive collaboration with veteran drummer/producer Jim Sclavunos (Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds, The Cramps, Teenage Jesus & The Jerks). The two clicked immediately, penning three songs on the very first day they set to work.

“Jim really helped me articulate a lot of what I was feeling,” she says. “He helped me make the things I was writing sound more like when I just wrote songs for myself. He taught me a lot about writing… again.”

Luckily – or perhaps not – she was in Memphis when Hurricane Sandy wreaked its havoc on the Jersey Shore and her familial home.

“It was awful,” she says. “The whole first floor was flooded, we didn’t have power for 18 days. Everything is pretty much back now, but its different. Everybody in the town aged a lot this year.”

As she pondered her next move, fate rang long distance. Hearing of her recent travails, her old producer Tore Johansson – known for his work with Franz Ferdinand, The Cardigans, and many others – invited Atkins to come record at his residential Malmö, Sweden studio.

“He said, ‘As soon as you can get here, get here,’” she says. “It was the perfect double whammy. Here was someone who was going to help me make my record and give me a place to live.”

Atkins packed up two years of songs, poetry, and journals, not to mention the hundreds of beat-based musical ideas stored on her iPhone. With Johansson’s able assistance, she devised a compelling new sonic approach, melding psychedelic energy, prog rock adventurism, after hours disco ambience, and the raw emotional purity of the finest country soul. Atkins stripped her traditional instrumentation to its core – Johansson handled bass duties, joined by The Cardigans’ Lars-Olaf Johansson on guitar, keyboardist Martin Gjerstad, and Asbury Park’s own Sam Bey behind the drum kit – placing considerably more emphasis on electronics than on her previous recordings.

“It sounds large but not cluttered,” she says. “We only used four instruments and tracked everything live. Instead of layering on a bunch of strings and horns and bells, the idea was to try to make everything have such complex melodies that they fit together like a puzzle. Every little bit counts.”

The result is remarkably vivid and varied, with songs like the opening “Who Killed The Moonlight?” blazing with transcendent pop hooks and floor-filling rhythms unlike anything Atkins has done before. She further pushed her songwriting by penning a series of wry, candid songs casting a mordant eye at pretentious boyfriends (“It’s Only Chemistry”), ponderous hipsters (“Cool People”), and the endless highway that is her perpetual home (“Gasoline Bride”). Slow Phaser comes to its poignant emotional close with “The Worst Hangover” – replete with images of shattered disco balls glittering on the storm swept Jersey shoreline – and the sparse, powerful “Above As Below,” which finds our heroine alone at sea, “surrendering to the void, just me, seagulls, and the gods.” A committed believer in the enduring power of the album-as-art form, Atkins embraced a classically tripartite sequencing inspired by Alejandro Jodorowsky’s notorious psychotropic western, El Topo.

“When it starts out, the protagonist is really cocky and sure of himself and makes terrible decisions without thinking about the repercussions,” she says. “In the second part, he has everything taken away and is really put in his place. Then, in the end, he accepts it and tries to find spiritual meaning in order to be a better person.”

Atkins plans to release Slow Phaser on her own Oh’Mercy! Records, an assertion of ownership that embraces her ever fervent fanbase, who are helping fund the project through a successful PledgeMusic campaign. In addition, the always ambitious artist plans to indulge her defiantly prog dreams with the most theatrical live performances of her career thus far.

“I’m going to wear a cape and shoot lasers out of my hands,” she says. “Really.”

Inventive and irresistible, Slow Phaser positively radiates with idiosyncrasy and a palpable sense of fully empowered musical discovery.

“It’s taken me a while to figure out who I really am,” Nicole Atkins says. “Musically, and as a person. It’s constantly changing. I’m not just this one character. I’m an artistic person trying to figure shit out.”

September 2013
TWO TEARS
TWO TEARS
THE TWO TEARS features KERRY DAVIS on guitar and vocals with a rotating cast of musicians, combining pop influences and clever lyricism with elements that come straight from the garage. Davis started out in 90's LA girl group the RED AUNTS who boasted producer credits by BRETT GUREWITZ and the much revered MICK COLLINS of GORIES and DIRTBOMBS fame. She went on to join Collins as drummer in THE SCREWS (In The Red Records) and played in BEEHIVE AND THE BARRACUDAS (Swami Records), featuring San Diego's finest musicians. Special guest drummer on these dates only will be ex-Red Aunts bandmate, LESLEY ISHINO (The Intelligence)!
Venue Information:
Music Hall of Williamsburg
66 North 6th St
Brooklyn, NY, 11211
http://www.musichallofwilliamsburg.com/