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NEWS : WED, APR 15, 2015 at 12:00 AM

Here are the 2015 Sub Pop Loser Scholarship winners.

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We would like to extend a sincere thank you to all of this year’s applicants for the Sub Pop Loser Scholarship. The breadth of qualified applicants this year gave us quite an inspiring glimpse into the minds of many of the freakiest high school Loser brains in the Pacific Northwest. Every year we get the privilege to be inspired by our applicants and every year we still manage to get blown away by how many awesome young people are waving their freak flags high and fighting the good fight here in our little corner of the U.S.A. GOOD JOB LOSERS, you win again!

This year’s best Sub Pop Losers are…

Noah Philips-Reardon –$7,000

Noah inspired us all with her heart and dedication to promoting a more inclusive, productive, and inspred all ages music community here in Seattle. Her work interning with STG, EMP, Vera Project, Sasquatch and various other local organizations showed us how involved a young person can be in the music community. The blog she runs, showed us a self-driven spirit that looked to promote up and coming artists. The reporting she did on all ages music for KUOW showed us a high school perspective on a Seattle scene, that mainly caters to adults, leaving young people wanting more. She is off to USC to study the music industry and likely one day take all of our jobs.

For the first time in the history of the Loser Scholarship, we could not decide between the second and third spot. After much discussion, comparison, and debate, we decided to split the remaining money evenly between the two.

Michael Erickson–$4,000

Michael strikes us as a very very productive young man, a real go getter. Reminding us of a young Dntel or The Album Leaf, his band WMD has tons of material ranging from 8 bit chiptune loop mashups to deep almost orchestral soundscapes that are really great. The ability to use technology to create tons of beautiful music that has caught international acclaim while still in high school is super impressive stuff. When we found out about Michael’s film scores, volunteer efforts, strong work ethic and collegiate ambitions we became smitten. Check out http://wmdchiptune.bandcamp.com/album/sophrosyne for more. Jimmy Lavelle and Jimmy Tamborello have some competition coming their way from this kid.

Isaac Worley–$4,000

Isaac is a music nerd. He seems to be in five to ten different bands that all sound totally different. His drumming is both technically sound and innovative. Rock bands, jazz bands, marching bands, prog bands, funk bands, he drums for all of them. We really appreciate how well rounded Isaac is while still seeming to be a perfectly wonderful Loser. The focus on his craft and work ethic that Isaac displays ought to get him a leg up in his college music studies at Loyola University in New Orleans. To say we were impressed with Isaac would be an understatement.



Posted by Andrew Sullivan

NEWS : TUE, APR 14, 2015 at 12:00 AM

Listen to Rose Windows’ “Strip Mall Babylon” Now

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You can now listen to Rose Windows “Strip Mall Babylon, a new offering from the group’s forthcoming, self-titled and final album, due out May 4th on Sub Pop.
 
Stereogum premiered the track and had this to say, ““Strip Mall Babylon” suggests the album is well worth hearing (we can attest to this suggestion). The song starts deceptively with a slinky groove, before Qazi’s Joplin-esque roar explodes over thick, fuzzy guitars and searing organs. It’s a victorious sign-off for a band with a brief but impressive run. Hear the track below.(see track premiere April 14th).”
 
Preorders for Rose Windows are available now from Sub Pop Mega Mart, iTunes, Amazon and Bandcamp. All customers who pre-order the LP version of the album from megamart.subpop.com will receive the “Loser Edition” on red & black marbled vinyl, and a limited edition 7” which features the songs “Never Did Me Wrong” and a cover of Led Zeppelin’s “The Wanton Song” (while supplies last). Additionally, there will be a new T-shirt design available in two colors, both individually and as part of a bundle with purchases of the new record.
 
Rose Windows recently shared the news of their dissolution through their Facebook page (read more here) and have canceled all scheduled live dates. With that said, we are very proud to have released two albums with Rose Windows, and wish them well in their future pursuits, both musically and otherwise.



Posted by Sam Sawyer

NEWS : THU, APR 9, 2015 at 12:00 AM

Doldrums’ ‘The Air Conditioned Nightmare’ Out Now - See the New Video for “Loops”

DoldrumsThe Air Conditioned Nightmare is now available everywhere on CD / LP / DL from Sub Pop. The album, led by highlights “HOTFOOT”, “Video Hostage”, “Loops” and “Blow Away”, was recorded in Montreal and LA and produced by Doldrums’ Airick Woodhead.  
 
You can now watch the official video for “Loops” (via the embed) helmed by director Lily X. The FADER premiered the new visual, and had this to say, “What in God’s holy name is going on in the video for Doldrums’ “Loops”… A trove of trippy imagery that will damn near make your head explode—and it quite nicely fits the project’s warped, melted-pop aesthetic (see premiere April 7th).“
 
Doldrums’ previously announced 2-month tour in support of The Air Conditioned Nightmare, begins tomorrow night, April 9th with a hometown show in Montreal, QC at Bar Le Ritz and currently ends July 31st-August 2nd in Sackville, NB for Sappyfest. Support for the North American dates (April 15-May 9th) will come from Last Gang recording artist Moon King. Please find a complete list of tour dates below.
 
Purchases of The Air Conditioned Nightmare are available from Sub Pop Mega Mart, iTunes, Amazon and Bandcamp. All customers who order the LP version of the album from megamart.subpop.com will receive the limited “Loser Edition” on clear vinyl and a limited edition clear 7” which features the songs “IDONTWANNABEDELETED” (feat. Samantha Urbani) and “Market Signals.” Additionally, there is a new T-shirt design available both individually and as part of a bundle with purchases of the new record.
 
What people are saying about Doldrums:
“Using samplers and DJ gear in place of guitars and drums, the expanded Doldrums have come up with a hyper-detailed prog-dance-pop odyssey” - FACT Magazine
 
“An album that is full of conflict, using samplers to create a blend of discordant noises with industrial drums and occasionally uplifting vocals. Music fit for Montreal’s late-night warehouse parties.” - CBC

“Nestled in these adrenalised, highly evolved songs are bright pop hooks, showing that other artists could compete with Doldrums, but they wouldn’t be able to keep up.” - DIY

“The album’s 10 tracks are an electronic counterculture update that proudly carries the scars of its disenchanted pioneers.” -
Consequence of Sound

“ In what little cracks are left between demolitions and Woodhead’s sly, zonked-out rambling, you can hear the clatter of live, room-recorded drums, endless effects trails, and hand-triggered samples lifted from God knows where. These are remnants of Doldrums’ writing process, and chances are that involves jamming on some heady grooves in a small, smokey room. It’s surprising how well all the ideas work together, no matter how cluttered and overstuffed “HOTFOOT” may sound, but Doldrums has specialized in conjuring the unexpected.”  [“HOTFOOT” / Track Review] - Pitchfork 
 
“The song hits hard, its skewed metropolitan pulse giving way to aggro percussive bass bursts that remind me of LCD Soundsystem’s “Losing My Edge.”  [“HOTFOOT” Track Review]  - Stereogum
 
”A master class in drone-y weirdness with a pop sensibility”  [“HOTFOOT” / Track Review] - COMPLEX
 
“‘Owes a little to ’90s electronica, and this one would probably sound right at home next to Underworld’s ‘Born Slippy.’” [“My Friend Simjen” / Track Review] - Brooklyn Vegan
 
“Densely packed with shifting layers of sound effects and heart-pounding sub-bass.” [“My Friend Simjen” / Track Review] - The Fader

”Top notch.” [“Loops” / Track Review] - NME
 
“A techno infused banger” [“Loops” /Track Review] - Clash
 
“‘A less chaotic preview of the album, with a giddy beat taking the reigns for Woodhead’s yearning voice” [“Loops” / Track Review]  - DIY
 
“A complex tapestry of house pop textures, with undulating synths tying themselves around a steady set of hi-hat-heavy beats.” [“Loops” / Track Review] - Exclaim!
 
Tour Dates:
Apr. 09 - Montreal, QC - Bar Le Ritz*
Apr. 15 - Boston, MA - Great Scott*
Apr. 17 - New York, NY - Mercury Lounge*
Apr. 18 - Brooklyn, NY - Baby’s All Right*
Apr. 19 - Washington, DC - DC9*
Apr. 21 - Atlanta, GA -  Aisle 5*
Apr. 24 - Houston, TX - Fitzgerald’s*
Apr. 30 - Los Angeles, CA - Echo*
May 02 - San Francisco, CA - Rickshaw Stop*
May 04 - Seattle, WA - The Sunset*
May 05 - Portland, OR - Holocene*
May 08 - Minneapolis, MN - 7th Street Entry*
May 09 - Chicago, IL - Empty Bottle*
May 15 - Copenhagen, DK - Pop Revo Festival, Atlas
May 16 - Rome, IT - Spring Attitude Festival
May 19 - Lile, FR - La Peniche
May 20 - London, UK -  Electrowerkz
May 21 - Dublin, IE - Hidden Agenda @ Whelans
May 22 - Bristol, UK - The Louisiana
May 23 - Manchester, UK - Soup Kitchen
May 24 - Glasgow, UK - Stereo
May 26 - Brighton, UK - The Hope
May 27 - Bruges, BE Cactus
May 28 - Amsterdam, NL - OT301
May 29 - Paris, FR - Le Pop Up du Label
May 30 - Bordeaux, FR - Iboat
Jun. 02 - Cologne, DE - Studio 672
Jun. 03 - Hamburg, DE - Volt
Jun. 04 - Berlin, DE - Privatclub
Jul. 11 - Antigonish, NS - Evolve Fest
Jul. 24 - Guelph, ON - Hillside Fest
Jul. 31 - Aug 2 - Sackville, NB - Sappyfest
* w/ Moon King

 



Posted by Sam Sawyer

NEWS : FRI, APR 3, 2015 at 12:00 AM

Listen: Father John Misty’s “True Affection”

Father John Misty’s “True Affection” is the new single and one of the standouts from his acclaimed new album, I Love You, Honeybear. The song has earned raves from the likes of PASTE (“stunning”), Under The Radar (“mesmerizing”) and Exclaim (“A true highlight”). Listen here.
 
Father John Misty’s 2015 worldwide tour, in support of I Love You, Honeybear, is underway, with a sold-out show tonight, April 3rd in Chicago, IL at the Vic Theatre and currently ends November 4th-8th in Reykjavik, IS for Iceland Airwaves. New highlights include British Columbia festivals Pemberton on July 18th and Colwood’s Rock the Shores on July 19th. Please find a complete list of tour dates below.
 
Father John Misty’s I Love You Honeybear has earned the singer his highest chart position in the US to date, entering at #17 on the Billboard Top 200. In the UK, I Love You, Honeybear also entered at #14 on the UK sales charts. The album also peaked at #1 on the CMJ Top 200, spending 4 weeks on the chart. I Love You, Honeybear also peaked at #2 with NonComm and Top 20 with Triple A reporters.
 
In related news, you can check out his recent Billboard cover story (with Brittany Howard of Alabama Shakes and Hozier) and his Playboy Spring Music feature.
 
Father John Misty’s I Love You, Honeybear is available now on CD / LP / 2xLP / Deluxe 2xLP in Europe from Bella Union and everywhere else from Sub Pop to purchase via Father John Misty.net,  Sub Pop Mega Mart, iTunes, and Amazon.  

What people are saying about Father John Misty
“This warped, lovely album suggests that a true longtime partnership isn’t two people who love each other even for their flaws, but of two people accepting decay–their own and each other’s–and choosing to ride it out nonetheless.” - New York Times
 
“The artist born Josh Tillman aims for grandiosity in his Father John Misty disguise, and his second album for Sub Pop repeatedly reaches such heights. A musical genie bottle with the spirits of Phil Spector, Lee Hazlewood and Brian Wilson corked within, Tillman and co-producer Jonathan Wilson seem to revel in letting these sounds seep out and intermingle.” - Los Angeles Times
 
“His beloved Father John Misty debut was Fear Fun, issued in 2012. The new album, out now, is I Love You, Honeybear….and it is as good as, though quite different from, its predecessor.” - Wall Street Journal
 
I Love You, Honeybear, an album by turns passionate and disillusioned, tender and angry, so cynical it’s repulsive and so openhearted it hurts.” [8.8 / 10, “Best New Music”] - Pitchfork
 
“Upping the spectacle from Fear Fun his 2012 debut, I Love You, Honeybear is an autobiographical set about love, marriage and derangement that’s both ironic and empathic.” [4/5] - Rolling Stone
 
“If there’s a funnier, stranger and more touchingly bizarre album released this year, it will be a very good year indeed.” [4/5] - Billboard
 
“This is a gorgeous album.” [10/10] - Exclaim
 
“For all the layers of irony on I Love You, Honeybear, the biggest irony of all might be that such an ostensibly knotty and confusing album’s real strength lies in something as prosaic and transparent as its author’s ability to write a beautiful melody.” [5/5] - The Guardian
 
“Album of the Week” - Stereogum
 
Tour Dates
Apr. 03 - Chicago, IL - Vic Theater* [Sold Out]
Apr. 04 - Minneapolis, MN - First Ave* [Sold Out]
Mar. 31 - Apr. 05 - Iowa City, IA - Mission Creek Festival @ The Englert
Apr. 07 - Lawrence, KS - Granada*
Apr. 08 - Omaha, NE - Sokol Auditorium*
Apr. 09 - Denver, CO - Ogden Theater* [Sold Out]
Apr. 10-12 - Indio, CA - Coachella [Sold Out]
Apr. 13 - Pomona, CA - The Glasshouse [Sold Out]
Apr.14 - San Diego, CA - North Park Theatre* [Sold Out]
Apr. 16 - San Francisco, CA - The Fillmore*  [Sold Out]
Apr. 17 - San Francisco, CA - The Fillmore*  [Sold Out]
Apr. 17-19 - Indio, CA - Coachella [Sold Out]
Apr. 22 - Dallas, TX - Granada Theater** [Sold Out]
Apr. 23 - Houston, TX - Fitzgerald’s** [Sold Out]
Apr. 24 - Austin, TX - Stubb’s** [Sold Out]
Apr. 25 - New Orleans, LA - Civic Theater** [Sold Out]
May 15-17 - Gulf Shores, AL - Hangout Music Festival
May 22 - Portland, OR - Crystal Ballroom [Sold Out]
May 22-25 - George, WA - Sasquatch Festival [Sold Out]
May 24 - Vancouver, BC - Commodore Ballroom [Sold Out]
May 28 - St. Louis, MO - The Fox Theatre***
May 29 - Kansas City, MO - Starlight Theatre***
May 30 - Minneapolis, MO - Halls Island*** [Sold Out]
May 31 - Milwaukee, WI - Pabst Theatre
Jun. 02 - Indianapolis, IN - Farm Bureau Insurance Lawn at White River***
Jun. 03 - Detroit, MI - Masonic Temple Theatre
Jun. 04 - Columbia, MD -  Merriweather Post Pavillion^
Jun. 05-07 - Cincinnati, OH - Bunbury Music Festival
Jun. 06 - Pittsburgh, PA - Carnegie of Homestead Music Hall
Jun. 06-07 - Toronto, ON - Field Trip Festival
Jun. 26 - Bexhill, UK -  De La Warr Pavilion
Jun. 27-28 - Killarney, IE - Killarney Food & Music Festival
Jul. 24-26 - Edmonton, ON - Interstellar Rodeo @ Heritage Amphitheatre
Jul. 01-04 - Gdnya, PL - Open’er Festival
Jul. 02-05 - Barcelona, ES - Vida Music Festival
Jul. 18 - Pemberton, BC - Pemberton Music Festival
Jul. 19 - Colwood, BC - Rock the Shores
Jul. 23-26 - Calgary, AB - Calgary Folk Festival
Jul. 31-Aug. 02 - Montreal, QE - Osheaga Festival
Aug. 01 - Buffalo, NY - Town Hall
Aug. 05 - New York, NY - Central Park Summerstage^^
Aug. 11-15 - Oslo, NO - Oya Festival
Aug. 13-15 - Gothenburg, SE - Way Out West
Aug. 14-15 - Haldern, Nordrhein-Westfalen, DE - Haldern Pop Festival
Aug. 20-21 - Paredes de Coura, PT - Pauredes de Coura Festival
Aug. 21-23 - Biddinghuizen, NL - Lowlands Festival
Aug. 22-23 - Beacon, UK - Green Man Festival
Oct. 24 - Dublin, IE - Vicar Street
Oct. 28 - London, UK - O2 Shepherds Bush Empire
Oct. 29 - London, UK - O2 Shepherds Bush Empire [Sold Out]
Nov. 04-08 - Reykjavik, IS - Iceland Airwaves



Posted by Sam Sawyer

NEWS : WED, APR 1, 2015 at 10:00 AM

Selective Listening: Notes from the desk of the General Manager… (April 2015)

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Selective Listening: Notes from the Desk of the General Manager, April 2015


A Brief History of Tooting Our Own Horn


Though Bruce (here I mean Pavitt) had been using the title Subterranean Pop since sometime in ‘79 for fanzines, cassette compilations, radio shows, potent weed hybrids, and the like, somewhere along the line he and Jonathan (and here I mean Mr. Poneman, aka my boss) decided that April 1, 1988, the day they quit their jobs and rented a tiny office in the Terminal Sales Bldg., was the day the Sub Pop label was really born. No doubt the three of you still reading this possess the high-level math skills to quickly compute the following fact that will be the foundational excuse for the nonsense which follows: today, April 1, 2015, is the 27th birthday of Sub Pop Records, the record label most well-known (to me anyway…) for continuing to offer me employment. (You are, of course, free to have your own associations…).


And, what better way to celebrate a birthday than with a good party? We here at Seattle’s most loud-mouthed record label, have a long, expensive tradition of congratulating ourselves with self-indulgent parties just for continuing to exist for another year. 


Some “highlights,” then!


In 1998, to commemorate 10 whole years of record making and flirting indiscreetly with insolvency, we put together a party at The Showbox here in Seattle, with Rebecca Gates of The Spinanes, 10 Minute Warning, TAD, The Afghan Whigs, and surprise guests The Murder City Devils. The bands were all great and it was all an exceedingly good time. And… Around this same time the MTV show “The Real World” was filming a season here in Seattle. Several or maybe all of the cast members participated in the internship program at our local commercial alternative radio affiliate (to the best of my memory, they were referred to as something like “Regurgitators”) and came to the event early to conduct interviews with the bands for the station. During their interview with Tad Doyle (of TAD…), beneath a high school reunion-style banner reading “Welcome Alumni! Sub Pop 1988-1998”, Stacey or Donny or Puck or whoever it was, lost no time in diving into the tough questions: “So, what’s it like for The Afghan Whigs to play Sub Pop’s anniversary show?” Tad, known equally for visibly resembling no one so much as Tad, the guy from TAD, and also for being a genuine and affable guy, ran with it and gave an insightful and largely fictional interview on the subject.


No idea (or clear recollection) of what happened between anniversaries 10 and 20, really.


But, in July of 2008, for our 20th anniversary, we held a 2-day festival called SP20 out at Marymoor Park, preceded by a comedy show at the Moore Theatre that Friday night, and then we gave away all of the money we made. We also hosted a party at the Space Needle here in Seattle, painted its roof to look like a 7” label (with the words “Thank You Seattle. Love, Sub Pop”), and flew a giant Sub Pop flag from its very top. Of the fucking SPACE NEEDLE! There are photos to prove I am not making this up. This was a fantastic event – tons of old friends showed up, all of the bands played amazing sets AND got along, good vibes reigned throughout, and somehow, miraculously nothing went disastrously wrong. We did, inadvertently offend Girl Trouble by not thinking to invite them to play, but they wound up showing up and playing for free outside the front gate anyway, so even that worked out. (Strictly Sacred, the doc about Girl Trouble is very worth seeing, BTW.)


Our only possible regret: why didn’t we call the whole thing SPF20? That’s definitely a better name for a summer festival, right?


And then, in July of 2013, we hosted a free one-day event in Seattle’s gritty, colorful Georgetown neighborhood which we called The Sub Pop Records Silver Jubilee. As you might imagine there was live music, and an opening night comedy show, but this time there was also a record fair, poster fair, readings and panels, a historical art show at a pop-up Sub Pop Mega Mart, and as much merch as we could possibly make and sell. All told, somewhere around 40,000 people showed up, and I got to answer some questions from my kids (aged 10 and 6 at the time) about the full mod prim gent in a dusty Utilikilt and Thunderdome hairdo/beard design, who, on a roughly 4’ x 4’ scrabbly little ashtray of ground between two buildings, was offering passersby the chance to staple cash to his body… Stay in school, kids!


The Silver Jubilee was also an incredibly good time, an unbelievable gathering of some of our favorite people and music, and great throngs of well-meaning, happy and clearly intoxicated strangers (and also the guy with the stapler).


The one possible negative aspect: some grumbling that Soundgarden did not materialize as a surprise guest. To be clear, we never actually said that they would (though, the guy from The Afghan Whigs in this video seems to be saying something that MIGHT be confusing…).


Happily, in the end, our Yelp reviews were largely positive…


And, because we just can’t seem to keep our hands (or, in this case, bands) off of it, we somehow convinced the usually responsible people who operate the Space Needle to allow Mudhoney to perform on the actual roof of this very tall, very iconic building a few days before the Jubilee. Our friends at KEXP broadcast and recorded this monumentally historic event.


One thing that’s been unmistakable, through all of this, is that none of it matters if you guys aren’t paying attention. And, a lot of times, more times than we’d have guessed, you have! We’re grateful, thank you.


While the rhetorical question up there at the beginning, about 6 who-gives-a-shits ago, asking what better way to celebrate a birthday than with a good party, sort of begs a less rhetorical question along the lines of, “Then, sweet, merciful Jesus Christ pose, why is this overlong blog post not full of details about a forthcoming anniversary party instead of all of this preening, laurel-resting poppycock??!” the answer is pretty simple: we’re not ready yet. We’re keeping our nose to the grungestone: putting out a bunch of incredible records, opening a shop at the airport, working on the 2nd Sub Pop Festival in Brazil, tightening up our Myspace profile, and scheming for the future. The next time we throw a party, you are all totally invited.


Happy our birthday to you,

Chris


Posted by Chris Jacobs