Today in spectral news: Shabazz Palaces will release Quazarz: Born On A Gangster Star - follow up to Lese Majesty, the group’s critically acclaimed album - worldwide on July 14th through yours truly, Sub Pop Records. The new album featuring highlights “Shine A Light” (ft. Thaddillac), “Since Caya,” and “Moon Whip Quaz” (ft. Darrius) was produced by Knife Knights (aka Ishmael Butler and Erik Blood), recorded and mixed by Blood at Protect and Exalt Labs: A Black Space in Seattle.
The “Shine A Light” lyric video (as seen above) was directed by Cristina T. Bercovitz and Jonathan Snipes of Clipping.
Quazarz: Born On A Gangster Star serves as both an introduction and tells the tale of Quazarz, a sentient being from somewhere else, an observer sent here to Amurderca to chronicle and explore as a musical emissary. What he finds in our world is a cutthroat place, a landscape where someone like him could never quite feel comfortable amidst all the brutality and alternative facts and death masquerading as connectivity.
The Palaceer of Shabazz Palaces says of his extraterrestrial persona: “I, Quazarz, Born On A Gangster Star, son only of Barbara Dream Caster and Reginald The Dark Hoper - he who rides on light - dreamer of the seventh dream and kissed eternal by Awet the Sun Scented - who far from home I found my same self differents in those constellies that be Dai at my weap-side immediate and all us Water Guild affiliates who revelries in the futures passed recordings and ceremonies flexing resplendent in the Paradise Sportif armor - raising these musics a joy/cry that way into these aquadescent diamondized ethers of the Migosphere here on Drake world. Welcome To Quazarz.”
Quazarz: Born On A Gangster Star is now available for preorder on CD / LP / DL / CS from Sub Pop right over here. LP pre-orders through megamart.subpop.com and select independent retailers, will receive the limited Loser edition on colored vinyl. There will also be a new T-shirt design available.
Quazarz: Born On A Gangster Star Tracklisting: 1. Since C.A.Y.A 2. When Cats Claw 3. Shine a Light (feat. Thaddillac) 4. Dèesse Du Sang 5. Eel Dreams (feat. Loud Eyes Lou) 6. Parallax (feat. The Palaceer Lazaro) 7. Fine Ass Hairdresser 8. The NeurochemMixalogue 9. That’s How City Life Goes 10. Moon Whip Quäz (feat. Darrius) 11. Federalist Papers
Shabazz Palaces will support Quazarz: Born On A Gangster Star with North American tour dates that currently span May 13th through September 17th. The tour will include stops in Seattle, Portland, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Phoenix, Austin, Dallas, Atlanta, Montreal, Brooklyn, Washington, D.C. Philadelphia and more. Additionally, festival appearances include Upstream Music Fest (May 13th), and Chicago’s Riot Fest (15th-17th).
May 13 - Seattle, WA - Upstream Music Fest + Summit 2017 Aug. 16 - Portland, OR - The Star Theater Aug. 18 - San Francisco, CA - Great American Music Hall Aug. 19 - Los Angeles, CA - The Regent Theatre Aug. 20 - Phoenix, AZ - Crescent Ballroom Aug. 23 - Austin, TX - Mohawk (Outdoor Stage) Aug. 24 - Dallas, TX - Club Dada Aug. 25 - Baton Rouge, LA - Spanish Moon Aug. 26 - Atlanta, GA - Terminal West Aug. 27 - Charleston, SC - Music Farm Aug. 28 - Carrboro, NC - Cat’s Cradle Aug. 30 - Columbus, OH - Ace of Cups Aug. 31 - Detroit, MI - El Club Sep. 02 - Montreal, QC - Theatre Fairmount Sep. 05 - Boston, MA - The Sinclair Sep. 06 - Brooklyn, NY - Warsaw Sep. 07 - Philadelphia, PA - Union Transfer Sep. 08 - Washington, DC - Black Cat Sep. 11 - Asheville, NC - The Grey Eagle Tavern & Music Hall Sep. 15 - Chicago, IL - Riot Fest at Douglas Park Sep. 16 - Chicago, IL - Riot Fest at Douglas Park Sep. 17 - Chicago, IL - Riot Fest at Douglas Park
More on Shabazz Palaces Quazarz: Born On A Gangster Star
2017 tour schedule begins May 23rd with sold-out show at New York’s The Apollo Theatre
“Arabian Heights” is the driving new track from The Afghan Whigs’ forthcoming album, In Spades, which will be out in stores and on the airwaves May 5th. This new song exudes the gutbucket exoticism of Houses of the Holy and Physical Graffiti writ large, driven by drummer Patrick Keeler’s bravura, tribal cadences. Greg Dulli says of Keeler’s contribution, “Rick [Nelson, who engineered the album] got incredible drum sounds, and what Patrick does on that song is a master class in drumming.”
In further exciting news, The Afghan Whigs will be performing a sold out show at The Apollo Theater in Harlem, NY on Tuesday, May 23rd. “We are thrilled to be performing at The Apollo,” Dulli remarked. “So many of my heroes both musical and otherwise have graced the stage there and it will be our honor to do so as well.”
The Afghan Whigs have also announced their first set of dates in support of In Spades in Europe. The band will visit 17 countries this summer including performances at Primavera Sound and Northside Festival. Ed Harcourt will be supporting on all European headline shows. (See dates below.)
In Spades is now available for preorder on CD / 180 gram-LP / CS / DL from Sub Pop over here. The album, led by the single “Demon In Profile” and the aforementioned “Arabian Heights,” alongside standouts “Oriole,” “Copernicus,” and “Toy Automatic,” is the follow-up to the band’s internationally acclaimed Do to the Beast. In Spades, written and produced by Greg Dulli, was recorded in New Orleans, Los Angeles, Memphis and Joshua Tree.
LP pre-orders of In Spades will receive the “Loser” edition on 180-gram, white-chocolate vinyl (while supplies last). A new T-shirt design, along with cassette versions of The Afghan Whigs’ classic Sub Pop albums Up In It and Congregation, are now also available.
The Afghan Whigs Tour Schedule May 23 - Harlem, NY – The Apollo Theater [Sold Out] May 26 - Manchester, UK - Cathedral May 27 - Glasgow, UK - ABC May 28 - Dublin, IE - Academy May 30 - London, UK - Koko Jun. 01 - Barcelona, ES - Primavera Sound Festival Jun. 03 - Bologna, IT - Zona Roveri Jun. 04 - Zagreb, HR - Tvornica Kulture Jun. 06 - Warsaw, PL - Palladium Jun. 07 - Berlin, DE - Kesselhaus Jun. 09 - Aarhus, DK - Northside Festival Jun.10 - Oslo, NO - Vulkan Jun.12 - Hamburg, DE - Gruenspan Jun.13 - Frankfurt, DE - Batschkapp Jun.14 - Antwerp, BE – Trix [Sold Out] Jun.15 - Brussels, BE - Ancienne Belgique [Sold Out] Aug. 04 - Vienna, AT - WUK Aug. 05 - Prague, CZ - Lucerna Music Bar Aug. 06 - Zurich, CH - Mascotte Aug. 08 - Munich, DE - Backstage Halle Aug. 09 - Amsterdam, NL - Paradiso Aug. 10-12 – Gothenburg, SE – Way Out West Festival Aug. 13 – Helsinki, FL – Flow Festival
We’ve been bustling hard at the Airport Store in preparation for the 10-year anniversary of Sub Pop’s sister label, Hardly Art. To commemorate this special occasion, which coincides with National Poetry Month, I’ve decided some light verse is called for…
- Strangely revealing synth pop for your magical journey into the darkness.
It has been and continues to be a true honor representing all the local weirdos, punx, queers, poets, and female artists of Hardly Art at our store. We’re looking forward to what’s coming next*! The future is already someone’s dream.:)
Assistant Store Manager
*Speaking of what’s coming next… how ‘bout not one but TWO celebratory birthday shows, this coming May 18th and 19th at Seattle’s Chop Suey?! Details are here.
Now With More Spring 2017 Western U.S. and B.C. tour dates!
Time to wrap those ears around rising Seattle rapper Porter Ray’s ”Russian Roulette” (feat. Stas Thee Boss), a previously unreleased song recovered from a vault of tracks recorded during the Watercolor sessions. The cut features original production from B-Roc, with additional production from Vitamin D.
Uproxx premiered the song today, and had this to say, “Porter raps fast and loose over an experimental, smeary beat punctuated with woozy, psychedelic strings, narrating the kind of hookup that goes much farther than that first night. Stas comes in about halfway through to add a hook that’s as sensual as it is rhythmic, and the contrast of the two voices is part of what makes both of these songs from Ray so strong (see April 18th post).”
[Photo Credit: Jay Scroggins]
Having recently returned from SXSW Music Festival, Porter and crew have announced a string of upcoming dates, including an opening slot for Los Angeles-based MC Murs on May 2nd (in Bellingham at Wild Buffalo), and performances at Seattle’s Upstream and Sasquatch Music Festivals. (Scroll down for the full list of dates.)
Porter Ray’s Watercolor is now available on CD / 2xLP / DL / CASS from Sub Pop right over here, and in finer independent record stores the world over.
May 02 - Bellingham, WA - Wild Buffalo w/ Murs May 11 - Seattle, WA - Upstream Music Festival May 16 - Denver, CO - Cervantes - Otherside May 17 - Ft. Collins, CO - Hodi’s May 18 - Salt Lake City, UT - Kilby Court May 19 - Portland, OR - Hawthorne Theatre May 26 - Quincy, WA - Sasquatch Music Festival Jun. 02 - Vancouver, BC - Biltmore Cabaret
What “The People” are saying about Porter Ray:
“A star in the making.” [Watercolor] – Uncut
“A natural storyteller, Ray unleashed a series of vivid mixtape portraits of his locale’s druggy highs and lows that painted him as a new school Nas with the lyrical slickness of Roc Marciano. The street-wise intellect certainly lets his slightly off-pitched voice do most of the heavy lifting over the stuttering spacey synthetics, phased keys and warped Rhodes of B-Roc’s atmospheric production.” [Watercolor, 4/5] – MOJO
“As a rapper, Porter’s storytelling skills drive his lyrical content. He tries to paint pictures, never sounding over excited or too energetic, opting for beats which create unique moods….with his effortlessly smooth tone and considered lyricism, Porter carries himself with striking presence and wisdom.” [Watercolor] - Crack Magazine
“Ray is Seattle to the bone, continuing the tradition of Sea-Town rappers with malleable flows and unorthodox sounds that bend along with them….The first taste of his album is a posse cut of sorts featuring ShabazzPalaces, Palaceer, and Castro. They all spit complicated rhyme schemes over a hollowed-out soundscape with dry 808 drums and shimmering, space-age synths reminiscent of THEESatisfaction.” [“Sacred Geometry”] –Stereogum
“Seattle rapper Porter Ray shares another hazy and seductive gem from his debut…“Arithmetic” showcases Porter’s golden voice and effortlessly vivid flow over a dreamy, immersively narcotic beat, elevated by spectral siren calls from the great StasThee Boss (formerly of THEESatisfaction) and anchored by a crucial assist from revered Seattle MC Infinite.” [“Arithmetic”] - Gorilla vs Bear
“On the first track from the Seattle native’s forthcoming Watercolor, Porter leads the song with melodic cadences and descriptive verses. Here, he and his collaborators all highlight the narratives that make up this holy equation.” [“Sacred Geometry”] - The FADER
is seeking a Music Licensing Coordinator in our Seattle office. We’re looking
for an individual who has great interpersonal skills, is a self-starter, is
detail-oriented and has the ability to work in an open group environment. This
is an entry-level position that reports directly to the Director of Licensing.
Specific Responsibilities include:
Working to place our catalog in advertisements, TV, film, video games,
web-videos, social media, podcasts and more by fielding and responding to music
searches and licensing requests.
- Actively pitching our catalog in a manner tailored to the taste and
project requirements of individual music supervisors, editors, filmmakers and
- Listening to and quickly learning a large catalog of material and
applying that knowledge to searches/requests for material.
- Tagging, organizing and maintaining the
licensing website and licensing database.
- Managing outstanding invoices and licenses.
all licensing and publishing activity and preparing biannual reports on such
Developing and maintaining relationships directly with music
supervisors, ad agencies filmmakers and other potential licensing contacts.
Organizing and attending artist functions for music supervisors, ad
agencies and others when appropriate.
Coordinating with the marketing department regarding new releases,
attending marketing meetings and related artist-specific planning meetings.
Sending out email blasts, playlists, show invites and other forms of
promotion around our releases.
Assisting in quoting, negotiating and preparing synchronization and
master use licenses.
passion for music in general is a must, as is familiarity with the Sub Pop and
Hardly Art catalogs.
- Interest in music licensing, film and
- Competent computer skills.
- Ability to work independently and take
- Ability to juggle and prioritize multiple
- Positive attitude, good communication skills
and an enthusiastic team spirit.
send resume and cover letter to Ruth Kim (firstname.lastname@example.org).
North American tour begins in May, with European dates to follow.
We (Sub Pop Records, that is) are over the moon to announce that NYC-based band Frankie Cosmos has joined the Sub Pop Family in a universe-spanning type of record deal. The band, comprised of Greta Kline (vox & guitars), David Maine (bass guitar), Lauren Martin (keyboards, synthesizers & vox) and Luke Pyenson (drums), have been touring the world extensively in support of their 2016 release Next Thing (Bayonet Records) which received critical praise from the likes of Pitchfork, NY Times, Paste, Rolling Stone, DIY Magazine and many more.
Watch the band’s in-studio performance of “Sinister” off Next Thingright here, and an intimate ‘Take Away Show’ performance of “Highway and Trees” (Meat cover) + “O Dreaded C Town” over here.
Frankie Cosmos is currently working on new material and will continue to tour throughout the remainder of the year. They kick-off a North American tour on May 5th in Boston, MA, which includes a performance at this year’s Pitchfork Music Festival in Chicago on July 14th. Additionally, the band will visit Europe for a series of shows July 28th-August 8th. (Current dates below.)
Originally the solo project of prolific New York City-based songwriter Greta Kline, Frankie Cosmos has blossomed into a four-piece band including David Maine, Lauren Martin, and Luke Pyenson.
The first studio release as Frankie Cosmos, Zentropy (Double Double Whammy), garnered wide acclaim upon its release, including New York magazine’s #1 Pop Album of 2014 and a Pitchfork Best New Track for “Birthday Song.” Recorded as a two-piece with Aaron Maine on drums, Frankie Cosmos began performing live as a three-piece with Aaron’s brother David on bass, and later as a four-piece with Gabrielle Smith on keyboard. The next studio release, 2015’s Fit Me In EP (Bayonet), combined Kline’s honest, lyrically-driven songwriting with Maine’s affinity for synth-driven production, and earned the project another Best New Track for “Young.” Lauren and Luke joined the group in late 2015 on keyboard and drums, leaving Gabrielle and Aaron to pursue their personal projects—Eskimeaux and Porches—and cementing the band’s current lineup.
The group’s most recent release is the critically-lauded Next Thing (2016, Bayonet), which has been praised for memorable lyrics that are both clever and concise, deeply personal and widely relatable; beautiful three-part vocal harmonies that enhance catchy pop melodies; and increasingly sophisticated instrumental arrangements that reflect a rapidly maturing band continuing to grow. The album received a coveted Best New Music designation from Pitchfork as well as exceptional reviews from the New York Times, Rolling Stone, and others. The band’s live show, honed during extensive touring of North America, Europe, Oceania and Japan, has also received glowing feedback for its mix of energy, intimacy and levity.
In their off-time, the bandmates of Frankie Cosmos practice a variety of other jobs and hobbies including textile design, food journalism, massage therapy, cooking, mixed martial arts, reading, painting, and petting dogs.
So now you’re asking yourself, “Okay, but what people have The People been saying about Frankie Cosmos? Well, this for example:
Ms. Kline’s songs don’t last long, and neither does her imagery, but she can be exceptional at capturing how quickly frail things can break, taking devastating turns in just a couple of lines. [Next Thing review] - NY Times
Many of the songs (“Embody,” “On the Lips,” “Too Dark” and “Sleep Song”) on the album have appeared in acoustic permutations in past work, and they make the leap seamlessly. Each are marvelously well.wrought trains of thought, cramming existential questions into the banality of everyday moments and finding something beatific even in the plainest of things. [Next Thing review] - Pitchfork
There are no answers, no solutions to any problems, and no gateway doors through escapism, but for half an hour the record shines a light through confusion, and just for a while, it doesn’t have to feel like such a loss to be lost [Next Thing review] - DIY Magazine
May 05 - Boston, MA - Royale * May 06 - Winooski, VT - Waking Windows Festival May 07 - Portland, ME - Port City Music Hall * May 06 - Kingston, NY - BSP Kingston May 09 - Toronto, ON - Danforth Music Hall * May 10 - Detroit, MI - Majestic Theatre * May 11 - Grinnell, IA - Grinnell College May 12 - Chicago, IL - The Vic Theater * May 13 - Nashville, TN - Exit/In * May 14 - Asheville, NC - The Mothlight May 15 - Raleigh, NC - Lincoln Theater * May 16 - Washington, DC - 9:30 Club * May 17 - Brooklyn, NY - Brooklyn Steel * May 18 - Baltimore, MD - Ottobar May 19 - Philadelphia, PA - Union Transfer * May 21 - Brooklyn, NY - Brooklyn Steel * Jul. 14 - Chicago, IL - Pitchfork Music Festival Jul. 23 - Hyères, FR - MIDI Festival Jul. 28 - Brighton, UK - The Haunt Jul. 29 - Derbyshire, UK - Indietracks Festival Jul. 31 - Cardiff, UK - The Full Moon Aug. 01 - Liverpool, UK - Magnet Aug. 02 - Dublin, IE - Whelan’s Aug. 03 - Edinburgh, UK - The Mash House Aug. 04 - Manchester, UK - Band On The Wall Aug. 05 - London,UK - Visions Festival Aug. 08 - Primosten, HR - SuperUho Festival Aug. 24 - Vancouver, BC - The Cobalt Cabaret Aug. 25 - Anacortes, WA - The Business Aug. 26 - Seattle, WA - The Crocodile Aug. 27 - Portland, OR - MusicFestNW presents Project Pabst ** Aug. 29 - Arcata, CA - Outer Space Aug. 30 - San Francisco, CA - Gray Area Theater Sep. 01 - Tucson, AZ - 191 Toole Sep. 03 - Los Angeles, CA - The Echoplex * w/ Real Estate ** w/ Beck, Nas, Spoon, Whitney and more