Wolf Parade just announced 2018 dates for the western U.S. and Canada in support of Cry Cry Cry, their forthcoming album. The newly added dates span January 12th in Vancouver at The Commodore Ballroom and run through January 24th in Phoenix at The Van Buren, and will include stops in Seattle, Portland, San Francisco, Berkeley, Los Angeles, Santa Ana, and San Diego. Barsuk Records act Charly Bliss, who are supporting the October 13th-27th shows (select dates), will now also act as direct support, January 12th-24th (select dates).
Tickets on sale to general public Friday, September 8th at 10am (local time), and fan pre-sale starts here tomorrow September 6th at 10am (also local time).
Preceding these headlining shows, Wolf Parade will also act as direct support for Arcade Fire, September 5th through September 28th.
Wolf Parade Tour Dates
Sep. 05 - Quebec City, QC - Videotron Center* Sep. 06 - Montreal, QC - Bell Centre* Sep. 08 - South Burlington, VT - Higher Ground Sep. 09 - Ottawa, ON - Canadian Tire Center* Sep. 21 - Duluth, GA - Infinite Energy Arena* Sep. 22 - Tampa, FL - USF Sun Dome* Sep. 23 - Coral Gables, FL - Watsco Center* Sep. 24 - St. Augustine, FL - St. Augustine, FL Amphitheatre* Sep. 26 - New Orleans, LA - UNO Lakefront Arena* Sep. 27 - Austin, TX - Frank Erwin Center* Sep. 28 - Dallas, TX - American Airlines Center* Oct. 12 - Guelph, ON - Peter Clark Hall Oct. 13 - Toronto, ON - Phoenix Concert Theatre** Oct. 15 - Buffalo, NY - Town Ballroom** Oct. 16 - Cleveland, OH - House of Blues Oct. 19 - Philadelphia, PA - Union Transfer** Oct. 20 - Boston, MA - Royale** Oct. 21 - Brooklyn, NY - Brooklyn Steel Oct. 22 - Washington, DC - Black Cat** Oct. 24 - Chicago, IL - Thalia Hall Oct. 25 - South Saginaw, MI - The Crofoot Ballroom Oct. 26 - Milwaukee, WI - Turner Hall** Oct. 27 - Minneapolis, MN - First Avenue** Nov. 15 - Amsterdam, NL - Melkweg Nov. 17- Paris, FR - Petit Bain Nov. 18 - Bristol, UK - Thekla Nov. 20 - Dublin, UK - Button Factory Nov. 21 - Manchester, UK - Gorilla Nov. 22 - London, UK - O2 Forum Nov. 24 - Brussels, BE - Botanique (Orangerie) Nov. 25 - Nancy, FR - L’ autre Canal Nov. 26 - Basel, CH - Kaserne Nov. 27 - Munich, DE - Hansa 39 Nov. 29 - Berlin, DE - Bi Nuu Nov. 30 - Hamburg, DE - Gruenspan Dec. 01 - Copenhagen, DK - Loppen Dec. 02 - Stockholm, SE - Strand
2018 Jan. 12 - Vancouver, BC - The Commodore Ballroom ** Jan. 13 - Seattle, WA - Showbox at the Market ** Jan. 14 - Portland, OR - Crystal Ballroom ** Jan. 16 - San Francisco, CA - The Fillmore ** Jan. 17 - Berkeley, CA - The UC Theatre ** Jan. 20 - Los Angeles, CA - The Fonda Theatre Jan. 21 - Santa Ana, CA - The Observatory ** Jan. 23 - San Diego, CA - The Observatory North Park ** Jan. 24 - Phoenix, AZ The Van Buren **
*w/ Arcade Fire ** w/ Charly Bliss
Early last week (August 29th), Wolf Parade released “You’re Dreaming,” a second offering and politically-charged standout from Cry Cry Cry [listen here]. “You’re Dreaming” is urgent power pop with lyrics inspired by the shock and confusion following the 2016 election (“All these scenes of shattered glass / All your systems in collapse”). Irreverent new animations from returning collaborator and visual artist Scorpion Dagger (“Valley Boy”) accompany the track.
Wolf Parade’s Cry Cry Cry will be available from Sub Pop on Friday, October 6th, 2017 and is now up for pre-order on CD / 2xLP / DL / CS worldwide from Sub Pop, and in Canada from Universal Records via Wolf Parade’s webstore right here. LP pre-orders through megamart.subpop.com and select independent retailers in the U.S. will receive the limited loser edition on creme colored vinyl (while supplies last), and a new t-shirt design is also available for your bundling pleasure.
Father John Misty has collaborated with British musician and producer The Haxan Cloak for a remix of “Things It Would Have Been Helpful To Know Before the Revolution,” from Pure Comedy. The rework strips the song of its lush instrumentation and glib tone.
The “…Revolution” remix follows the gorgeous, stop-motion video [watch here] directed by Chris Hopewell (Radiohead’s “Burn the Witch,” Run The Jewels’ “Don’t Get Captured”). The song‘s apocalyptic themes and subtle humor are captured brilliantly throughout. The “…Revolution” video was constructed and filmed in three weeks at Jacknife Studios in Bristol, UK. Additionally, puppets and props from “…Revolution” were recently auctioned off and the proceeds will be donated to the Environmental Defense Fund.
Father John Misty’s previously announced international tour schedule in support of Pure Comedy resumes this weekend with performances at End of the Road Festival on September 2nd and Electric Picnic on September 3rd. Father John Misty has also scheduled an interview and performance on Late Night With Seth Meyers on September 12th.
Sep. 02 - Dorset, UK - End of the Road Festival Sep. 03 - Stradbally, IE - Electric Picnic [SOLD OUT] Sep. 13 - Boston, MA - Blue Hills Pavilion ** Sep. 14 - Port Chester, NY - Capitol Theatre ** Sep. 15 - Philadelphia, PA - Skyline Stage at the Mann ** Sep. 18 - Toronto, ON - Massey Hall * [SOLD OUT] Sep. 19 - Royal Oak, MI - Royal Oak Music Theatre * Sep. 20 - Chicago, IL - Auditorium Theatre * Sep. 22 - St. Louis, MO - Peabody Opera House * Sep. 23 - Columbus, OH - Palace Theatre * Sep. 25 - Asheville, NC - Thomas Wolfe Auditorium * Sep. 26 - Nashville, TN - Ryman Auditorium * [SOLD OUT] Sep. 27 - Atlanta, GA - The Tabernacle * Sep. 29 - Austin, TX - Bass Concert Hall * [SOLD OUT] Sep. 30 - Dallas, TX - Bomb Factory * Oct. 01 - Houston, TX - White Oak Music Hall * Oct. 02 - Austin, TX - Bass Concert Hall * Oct. 04 - Phoenix, AZ - Orpheum Theatre * Oct. 05 - San Diego, CA - The Observatory North Park * Oct. 06 - San Diego, CA - The Observatory North Park * [SOLD OUT] Oct. 07 - Berkeley, CA - Greek Theatre ** Oct. 11 - Santa Barbara, CA - Arlington Theatre * Oct. 12 - Las Vegas, NV - Brooklyn Bowl * Oct. 13 - Los Angeles, CA - Greek Theatre * Oct. 14 - Pomona, CA - Fox Theater Pomona * Nov. 01 - Edinburgh, UK - Usher Hall * Nov. 02 - Glasgow, UK - O2 Academy * Nov. 05 - Manchester, UK - O2 Apollo * [SOLD OUT] Nov. 07 - London,UK - Hammersmith Eventim Apollo * [SOLD OUT] Nov. 08 - London, UK - Hammersmith Eventim Apollo * Nov. 09 - Brighton, UK - Brighton Dome * Nov. 11 - Paris, FR - Le Trianon * Nov. 12 - Brussels, BE - Ancienne Belgique * Nov. 13 - Utrecht, NL - TivoliVredenburg * Nov. 14 - Berlin, DE - Huxley’s * Nov. 16 - Milan, IT - Fabrique * Nov. 18 - Barcelona, ES - Razzmatazz * Nov. 19 - Madrid, ES - La Riviera * Nov. 20 - Lisbon, PT - Coliseu dos Recreios *
Bully are back with a new album, more powerful and hard hitting than ever. Losing will be released October 20th worldwide on Sub Pop.
Off the back of the first single “Feel The Same” which had critics and fans alike raving about its intensity, the band are offering another glimpse into the new album releasing the new song “Running.” Alicia Bognano explains the meaning behind the song telling us, “Overall, Running is about shamelessly keeping yourself distracted or making up excuses to avoid processing certain emotions.”
Losing has all the hallmarks of an iconic album and on the band’s sophomore release, they’ve landed harshly in the adult world, and are facing the brutality of life. New York Magazine tipped the album in the Fall Music Preview writing “Alicia Bognanno has the loveliest snarl this side of Nirvana’s Live at Reading. That it’s in a pop-punk setting, with lyrics reckoning with adulthood, only strengthens its power.”
Bully will be hitting the road this fall, all dates are listed the below, along with a newly announced run of 2018 dates.
Losing is available for pre-order now from Sub Pop Records and from Bully’s webstore. LP pre-orders of the album from Sub Pop and select independent retailers will receive the limited Loser Edition on clear vinyl with black swirls (while supplies last).
Losing was engineered and mixed by lead-singer Alicia Bognanno in Chicago at Electrical Audio.
Wolf Parade’s “You’re Dreaming” is a politically-charged standout from Cry Cry Cry, the group’s forthcoming new album due out October 6th.
“You’re Dreaming” is urgent power pop with lyrics inspired by the shock and confusion following the 2016 election (“All these scenes of shattered glass / All your systems in collapse”). Irreverent new animations from returning collaborator and visual artist Scorpion Dagger (“Valley Boy”) accompany the track.
“You’re Dreaming” Lyrics:
Why’re you looking lost When you’re standing right beside me You were turning off Open up your eyes you’re sleeping
You’re dreaming You’re dreaming You’re dreaming
Never mind the time I’m up all night with the Century Ghosts They don’t have a mind They would never think of leaving
And we’re dreaming We’re dreaming We’re dreaming
All these scenes of shattered glass All your systems in collapse On the screen the move so fast it’s just like life But we’re dreaming
I got Metal in my blood Dancing around to the magnets What about our love So hard to start in a violent age And i don’t wanna I don’t wanna live in the place anymore Everybody cries Everybody needs some comfort
From dreaming Dreaming Dreaming
I want to change my whole life And forever in the place Is just a day Just a day
All these scenes of shattered glass All your systems in collapse On the screen they move so fast it’s just like life But we’re dreaming
Another scene more shattered glass Every system in collapse A billion screens they move so fast but that’s not life You’re dreaming Dreaming
It’s in the blood It’s in the blood It’s in the blood
[Photo Credit: Shane McCauley]
Wolf Parade’s thunderous Cry Cry Cry, featuring the aforementioned “You’re Dreaming” and “Valley Boy” [watch here], will be available on CD / 2xLP / DL / CS worldwide from Sub Pop on Friday, October 6th, 2017, and available in Canada from Universal Music. Pre-order is on now worldwide from Sub Pop and in Canada from Universal Records via Wolf Parade’s webstore right here. LP pre-orders through megamart.subpop.com and select independent retailers in the U.S. will receive the limited loser edition on creme colored vinyl (while supplies last). There’s also a brand new t-shirt design available for your bundling pleasure.
Of “Valley Boy,” Uproxx raved and called it “an exuberant new song.” Brooklyn Vegan adds, “It’s got not one but two of those classic singalong Krug hooks (the chorus and the “the radio’s been playing all your songs” line, a line Krug says about the late Leonard Cohen). As these live shows have been reminding us, Wolf Parade are not just great pop songwriters but they really know how to let loose as musicians, and the jammy instrumental bridge of “Valley Boy” is a fine example of that.” Meanwhile, Stereogumcalls “Valley Boy” “a grand, searching, theatrical rocker.” And Paste offers this, “[It] exemplifies Wolf Parade’s unique combination of energetic, textural sounds with complex, emotional lyrics and—if anything—proves the band is definitely back and ready to make up for lost time.”
Wolf Parade’s previously announced fall 2017 international tour dates in support of Cry Cry Cry, resume September 5th in Quebec City at Videotron Center through December 2nd in Stockholm at Strand. The band will also act as direct support for The Arcade Fire September 5th through September 28th (select dates). Meanwhile, support for Wolf Parade’s headlining North American dates will come from Barsuk Records act Charly Bliss (October 13th-27th).
Sep. 05 - Quebec City, QC - Videotron Center* Sep. 06 - Montreal, QC - Bell Centre* Sep. 08 - South Burlington, VT - Higher Ground Sep. 09 - Ottawa, ON - Canadian Tire Center* Sep. 21 - Duluth, GA - Infinite Energy Arena* Sep. 22 - Tampa, FL - USF Sun Dome* Sep. 23 - Coral Gables, FL - Watsco Center* Sep. 24 - St. Augustine, FL - St. Augustine, FL Amphitheatre* Sep. 26 - New Orleans, LA - UNO Lakefront Arena* Sep. 27 - Austin, TX - Frank Erwin Center* Sep. 28 - Dallas, TX - American Airlines Center* Oct. 13 - Toronto, ON - Phoenix Concert Theatre** Oct. 15 - Buffalo, NY - Town Ballroom** Oct. 16 - Cleveland, OH - House of Blues Oct. 19 - Philadelphia, PA - Union Transfer** Oct. 20 - Boston, MA - Royale** Oct. 21 - Brooklyn, NY - Brooklyn Steel Oct. 22 - Washington, DC - Black Cat** Oct. 24 - Chicago, IL - Thalia Hall Oct. 25 - South Saginaw, MI - The Crofoot Ballroom Oct. 26 - Milwaukee, WI - Turner Hall** Oct. 27 - Minneapolis, MN - First Avenue** Nov. 15 - Amsterdam, NL - Melkweg Nov. 17- Paris, FR - Petit Bain Nov. 18 - Bristol, UK - Thekla Nov. 20 - Dublin, UK - Button Factory Nov. 21 - Manchester, UK - Gorilla Nov. 22 - London, UK - O2 Forum Nov. 24 - Brussels, BE - Botanique (Orangerie) Nov. 25 - Nancy, FR - L’ autre Canal Nov. 26 - Basel, CH - Kaserne Nov. 27 - Munich, DE - Hansa 39 Nov. 29 - Berlin, DE - Bi Nuu Nov. 30 - Hamburg, DE - Gruenspan Dec. 01 - Copenhagen, DK - Loppen Dec. 02 - Stockholm, SE - Strand *w/ The Arcade Fire ** w/ Charly Bliss
Iron & Wine recently appeared on CBS Saturday Morning to perform Beast Epic tracks “Call it Dreaming”[see here], “Thomas County Law”[see here] and rarity “Call Your Boys”[see here]. He also recorded a gorgeous 40-min, career-spanning set with Pitchfork Live [see here].
Iron & Wine’s Beast Epic, which features the standouts “Call It Dreaming”, “Thomas County Law”, “Bitter Truth” and “About A Bruise,” was written and produced by Sam Beam. It was recorded and engineered by Tom Schick at the Loft in Chicago in July 2016 and January 2017, and mastered by Richard Dodd in Nashville, Tennessee. The musicians who played on the album include longtime Iron & Wine collaborators Rob Burger (keys), Joe Adamik (percussion, drums), and Jim Becker (guitar, banjo, violin, mandolin), along with bassist Sebastian Steinberg (Soul Coughing and Fiona Apple), and Chicagoan Teddy Rankin-Parker (cello).
Beast Epic is available from Sub Pop here, Iron & Wine’s official webstore here, and in finer independent retailers across the globe. It’s available in the following formats:
A Deluxe 2xLP version on red & blue vinyl with alternate artwork, two bonus tracks from the Beast Epic recording sessions along with three home recorded demos and an etching on side D.
A single LP on black vinyl
Tour Dates + Ticket Links
Iron & Wine has added headlining European dates to his 2017/18 tour schedule in support of Beast Epic, which begin January 14th in Reykjavic (at Eidborg) and end on February 16th in London (at Eventim Apollo). Tickets for all UK/EU dates will be on general sale at 10AM local time on Friday, September 1st.
These dates are preceded by US touring, which spans August 26th at Fayetteville (at the sold-out Roots Festival) and ends with a two night stand in New York on November 13th (at Town Hall) and 14th (at Brooklyn Steel). For up to date information on tickets, please visit ironandwine.com/tours.
Summer 2017 Aug. 26 - Fayetteville, AR - Roots Festival - SOLD OUT Aug. 27 - Columbia, MO - The Blue Note % Aug. 28 - Chattanooga, TN - Tivoli Theatre % Aug. 29 - Birmingham, AL - Saturn % - SOLD OUT Aug. 30 - Louisville, KY - WFPK on the Waterfront Aug. 31 - Nashville, TN - Lightning 100’s Live On the Green Aug. 31 - Nashville, TN - Blue Room at Third Man Records - SOLD OUT
Fall 2017 Oct. 12 - Chicago, IL - Thalia Hall* Oct. 13 - Chicago, IL - Thalia Hall # - SOLD OUT Oct. 14 - St Paul,MN - Palace Theatre # Oct. 15 - Lincoln, NE - Rococo Theatre # Oct. 17 - Missoula, MT - Wilma Theater # Oct. 18 - Seattle, WA - Moore Theater # Oct. 19 - Eugene, OR - McDonald Theater # Oct. 20 - Portland, OR - Aladdin Theate # - SOLD OUT Oct. 21 - San Francisco, CA - Warfield Theatre # Oct. 26 - Los Angeles, CA - The Cathedral Sanctuary at Immanuel Presbyterian* - SOLD OUT Oct. 27 - Pioneertown, CA - Pappy & Harriet’s* - SOLD OUT Oct. 28 - San Diego, CA - Balboa # Oct. 29 - Phoenix, AZ - Van Buren # Oct. 30 - Albuquerque, NM - El Rey # Nov. 01 - Dallas, TX - The Kessler # - SOLD OUT Nov. 02 - San Antonio, TX - The Aztec Theater # Nov. 03 - Houston, TX - The Heights # - SOLD OUT Nov. 04 - New Orleans, LA - Joy Theater # Nov. 06 - Ft Lauderdale, FL - Culture Room# Nov. 07 - Orlando, FL - The Beacham # Nov. 09 - Washington DC - Lincoln Theatre # - SOLD OUT Nov. 10 - New Haven, CT - College Street Music Hall # Nov. 11 - Boston, MA - Berklee Performance Center # - SOLD OUT Nov. 12 - Northampton, MA - Calvin Theatre # Nov. 13 - New York, NY - Town Hall # Nov. 14 - Brooklyn, NY - Brooklyn Steel*
Winter 2018 Jan. 14 - Reykjavic, IS - Eidborg Jan. 16 - Helsinki, FI - House of Culture Jan. 18 - Stockholm, SE - Nalen Jan. 19 - Oslo, NO - Sentrum Scene Jan. 20 - Gothenburg, SE - Pustervik Jan. 22 - Copenhagen, DK - Vega Jan. 23 - Aarhus, DK - Voxhall Jan. 25 - Berlin, DE - Huxleys Jan. 26 - Hamburg, DE - Uebel & Gefahrlich Jan. 27 - Amsterdam, NL - Paradiso Jan. 29 - Brussels, BE - Ancienne Belgique Jan. 30 - Cologne, DE - Gloria Feb. 01 - Munich, DE - Muffathalle Feb. 02 - Zurich, CH - X-Tra Feb. 05 - Milan, IT - Santeria Social Club Feb. 06 - Vienna, AT - WUK Feb. 08 - Prague, CZ - Hybernia Feb. 10 - Wiesbadan, DE - Sclachthof Feb. 11 - Paris, FR - Cafe De La Danse Feb. 13 - Birmingham, UK - Symphony Hall Feb. 14 - Dublin, IE - The Helix Feb. 15 - Manchester, UK - Bridgewater Hall Feb. 16 - London, UK - Eventim Apollo
% w/Lydia Loveless # w/John Moreland * w/OHMME
What “The People” are saying about Beast Epic: “Everything about Beast Epic feels true to Iron & Wine. Beam neither abandons his greater ambitions nor overindulges. He’s making a return trip to his roots, offering a gentle reminder of his early records’ simple beauty while allowing himself the freedom to build.” - American Songwriter
“A confident album from an artist who isn’t afraid to merge the past and present, Sam Beam continues to audibly demonstrate why he’s one of the most gifted songwriters of his time.” [8.1/10] - PASTE
“Beam has written his most affecting, impressive set of songs in a long time—maybe ever—and that’s saying something for a guy whose songwriting rarely misses, even when he’s stretching his sonic wings. Beast Epic strikes a perfect balance between gorgeous and world-weary from the first note to the last.” [Grade: A] – AV CLUB
It is the sound of Iron & Wine returning home, ending one chapter and beginning another…He finds comfort in retracing his own steps. This doesn’t mean sacrificing production value or abandoning the use of outside players, but everything here takes a backseat to Beam’s melodies. When subtleties appear—the vocal harmonies that underscore the emotional swells of “Bitter Truth,” the despondent violins and dusty pianos echoing from what sounds like another room in “Summer Clouds”—they are in service of songs that could stand comfortably without them. Working as his own producer with a live recording style and few overdubs, Beam has never sounded more in control. Even the album’s most sweeping production, the slow-building single “Call It Dreaming,” remains focused as Beam adds percussion, cello, and keys to his pristine and determined vocals. When the album closes with the fragile “Our Light Miles,” and Beam attempts to lob a delicate falsetto as a big finish, it cements Beast Epic as some of the best singing of his career. - Pitchfork
“Fifteen years after his first album, Sam Beam still has the capacity to surprise…Beast Epic serves as a valuable way point in Iron & Wine’s still-evolving legacy. Whatever sonic paths his next record treads, Beam has proven, to his fans’ great relief, that he’ll always know the way back home. ” [Grade: B] - Consequence of Sound
“With Beast Epic, Beam enlists the beguiling calm in his manner–he reaches for the cooling restraint of his masterful Our Endless Numbered Days, and polishes it with the draping bougainvillea in his beard, a robust production that’s decidedly stripped, at its best moments approaching the finest parts of The Shepherd’s Dog.” -Under The Radar
“The album may lack an atmosphere of immediacy but you’ll soon love it, from the charms of the gently chugging Bitter Truth via the sublime melody of Call It Dreaming.” - [4/5] Sunday Times ‘Album of the Week’
“With Beast Epic Beam has delivered a suite of songs that is equal to anything he’s done before.” - The Quietus
“Iron & Wine’s sixth album essays yet more romantic, Americana–tinged songwriting… The songs may be modest, but their sure–footed craft creates profound, 12 tog comfort” [4/5] The Guardian
“The record unfolds its songs of faith, hope and sudden clarity slowly, little glints and catches commanding attention. It might not look like its going to leap out and grab you, but Beam here launches a soft emotional punch.” [4/5] - MOJO
“Beam employs pastoral and ecclesiastical imagery to capture those moments of rapture, regret and redemption that become life markers.”[8/10] - Uncut
“Beast Epic marks a loop back to the more insular feel of his earlier material, from the bare–boned opener Claim Your Ghost to the gentle warmth of Call It Dreaming. The result is surprisingly refreshing – a kind of father–to–son conversation between songwriter and song.” [4/5] - Q Magazine
“Beast Epic is an effortless acoustic swell… A warm, kind album that has songs up there with Beam’s best.” [4/5] - Record Collector
“A superb collection of musings on the passing of time… One of our finest contemporary songwriters.” [4/5] - Shindig
“Timeless American folk that charms the listener with its sense of comfort and calm… A dreamy delight from start to finish.”[9/10] - Long Live Vinyl
“Beam’s dynamic playing is pitched perfectly with the soothing qualities of his voice and melodies… One of his strongest records yet.”[8/10]Guitarist
“There’s a warm and welcoming intimacy throughout this album… One of Beam’s strongest musical statements yet.” [4/5] - Total Guitar
“The maturity of a life long lived forms the basis of the album’s 11 songs… This is tender and meditative music that contemplates the complex tapestry of existence.” - Classic Rock
This 3LP/2CD set collects the entire studio-recorded output of the U-Men, remastered, plus 5 unreleased songs, with 16 pages of photos, liner notes and interviews w/ the band. Executive produced by Jack Endino.
Yes, you read it and even we can’t quite believe it’s true. So let us calmly reassure you that YES … IT’S FUCKING TRUE. Sub Pop Records will release U-Men, the self-titled anthology from the legendary Seattle band, worldwide on Friday, November 3rd, 2017.
This comprehensive remastered collection features the track you just pressed ‘play’ on, “Dig It a Hole”.
U-Men is now available for preorder from Sub Pop right hereand is available in the following formats:
3xLP box set housed in a cardboard slipcase with printed inner sleeves + 16-page booklet
2xCD digipack with custom dust sleeves + 16-page booklet
Volume 1 1. Blight 2. Flowers DGIH 3. Shoot ‘em Down 4. Gila 5. Trouble Under Water 6. Mystery Pain 7. Last Lunch
Volume 2 1. Clubs 2. The Fumes 3. Cow Rock 4. Green Trumpet 5. A Year and a Day 6. Ten After One 7. They! 8. U-Men Stomp 9. Solid Action 10. Dig It a Hole
Volume 3 1. Whistlin’ Pete 2. 2 X 4 3. A Three Year Old Could Do That 4. Juice Party 5. Flea Circus 6. Too Good to Be Food 7. Willie Dong Hurts Dogs 8. Papa Doesn’t Love His Children Anymore 9. Pay the Bubba 10. Freezebomb 11. That’s Wild About Jack 12. Bad Little Woman 13. Selfish
[Photo Credit: Cam Garrett]
More on the U-Men from Mudhoney’s Mark Arm: The U-Men are one of the best bands I’ve ever seen. They were hypnotic, frenetic, powerful and compelling. It was impossible to resist getting sucked into their weird, darkly absurd world. They effortlessly blended The Sonics, Link Wray, Pere Ubu, and Captain Beefheart. Their shows were loose-limbed, drunken dance parties and no two shows were alike. The U-Men were avant garage explorers and, most importantly, they fucking rocked. I was lucky enough to live in their hometown and I saw them every chance I could.
From 1983 to 1987, the U-Men were the undisputed kings of the Seattle Underground. No one else came close. They ruled a bleak backwater landscape populated by maybe 200 people. They were the only band that could unify the disparate sub-subcultures and get all 200 of those people to fill a room. Anglophilic, dress-dark Goths; neo-psych MDA acolytes; skate punks who shit in bathtubs at parties; Mod vigilantes who tormented the homeless with pellet guns; college kids who thought college kids were lame; Industrial Artistes; some random guy with a moustache; and eccentrics who insisted that they couldn’t be pigeonholed: all coalesced around the U-Men.
Sub Pop co-founder, Bruce Pavitt released the first record by the U-Men, a 4-song 12” EP on Bombshelter Records. By the time they had recorded songs for another record, Bruce was too broke to release it on his proto-Sub Pop label, so he hooked them up with Gerard Cosloy at Homestead Records. This was a big deal. Homestead had a heavy rep at the time with recent releases by Foetus, Nick Cave, Sonic Youth, and Big Black. I was sure that the release of their second 12”, Stop Spinning, would propel the U-Men into the ranks of those Homestead acts and the worldwide underground would get hip to Seattle’s finest.
The U-Men bought a pink school bus and made a couple of valiant attempts at touring. Touring was tough in those days. You’d arrive in town and learn that the show you thought you had fell through. Communication was difficult and long-distance phone calls were expensive. The band stayed in Austin for a month just to play two shows. They became fast friends with Poison 13, Butthole Surfers, Scratch Acid, The Hickoids, and Tales of Terror. Without any income they starved. Starvation and stress amplified fractures within the band and soon bassist Jim Tillman was out. That was the end of the classic line-up of the U-Men.
They remained a very good band, but with Jim they were a great band and they never quite recovered. They recorded two fantastic singles, but something was missing live. They must have sensed it because they played fewer and fewer shows. They recorded their one full-length album, Step on a Bug, for Black Label which was run out of Fallout Records. They became increasingly disenchanted with the direction the Seattle underground was heading and called it quits in 1989. The U-Men had nothing to do with Grunge. They were their own unique thing. I loved them and I still miss them.
I remember thinking at the time that most of their recordings were a little soft and didn’t capture the power of the band live. Now, thirty years later, their records sound great to me and we are lucky that they exist. I’m stoked that Sub Pop compiled these long out-of-print records and scrounged up some unreleased songs so that everyone has a chance to take a trip back to old weird Seattle.
The U-Men were… Tom Price – Guitar John Bigley – Vocals Charlie Ryan – Drums Jim Tillman – Bass (1982-86) And Robin Buchan – Bass (1980-82) Tom Hazelmyer – Bass (1987) Tony Ransom – Bass (1987-89)