Tonight in Seattle:  

New Pornographers

20 words each on 11 of the Best Releases of 2010

Shabazz Palaces by Jason Tang

{Shabazz Palaces photo from the Three Imaginary Girls Flickr Pool by Jason Tang}

Through sheer quirk of fate and possibly my own fatally quirky tastes, the top spots for my four favorite records of the year were given to two separate EPs by two different bands. I'm going to start my Top 20 of 2011 list with a cheat; combining two albums for placement at #1 and #2. Just to obnoxiously make you utterly vigilant of it: the first two spots are taken up by two separate releases, but they're EPs that if combined with each other, tie with/become one release.

Oh, and I'm keeping all hype to 20 words to mirror the Top 20 list. And then I cheat again by having the first two releases described in 40 words, a combination of two 20 word reviews. (No, I haven't been studying Kabbalah with the Wu-Tang Clan.) Also: Mostly in order, but ask me again tomorrow. (The Damien Jurado could be anywhere on this list, for example.) And regional preference takes precedence (call that "fanzine love").

1. Shabazz Palaces, Shabazz Palaces & Of Light EPs
Cracked, uncanny hip-hop collages of unsettling mind-movies, Clockers meets Company Flow. "Juxtapositions of the digital and analog, hard drum-machine beats set against softer bongos or the resonant sweetness of an mbira." -- Jon Caramanica, The New York Times

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Latest comment by: Chris Estey: "

That list could just as well as be mine today, KAC. (And yeah I really do need to see PG live.) Both Sufjan releases just keep unfolding for me too -- I assume you put "Adz" first, and the EP second? I am now under brain-siege by the full-length, ...

Win a dream date with the New Pornographers

OK, so it's not exactly as if you and Carl Newman or Neko Case will intimately be sharing a bottle of wine and discussing your childhoods (or maybe you will!), but boy do we have a special treat for you!

The New Pornographers are doing something very special for their 7/31 Showbox at the Market stop: inviting a few lucky fans in for soundcheck and a meet and greet with the band, encompassing the theme of their new album, Together. This fabulous package (Bob Barker style) includes VIP tickets to the show as well!

Along with our friends at Easy Street Records and KEXP, we here at TIG have 2 packages to giveaway! How do I win something so marvelous you might be asking? Simple! Just e-mail us at tig@threeimaginarygirls.com with the subject line "gettogetherwiththenewpornos" (all one word please!) by 9am Friday, July 23rd for a chance to win! This gives you plenty of time to think of some conversation ice breakers!

If you happen to be reading us in a city that is not Seattle, check out the Matador Records Matablog and Facebook page for the full scoop and to see if this amazing experience is offered in your city!

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Weekend recap - Sasquatch! Festival 2010

at Gorge Amphitheater

Pavement (Courtesy: Victoria Vanbruinisse for City Arts Magazine)

Every Memorial Day Weekend, scruffy hipsters and hippies alike who lack the cash to drop on a desert jaunt -- complete with $5 bottles of water and scorching heat -- descend upon the Gorge Amphitheater in George, WA (yes, that's really the name) for the 3-day Sasquatch! Music Festival.  There are considerably less stages and less big names, but the views are gorge-ous (har har), and you can easily find all of the previous year's blogworthy acts and at least a couple legendary ones before the weekend is through.  And since this is Washington, the festival organizers provide a free water bottle refill station to save plastic.  And did I mention it's beautiful out there?

This year my Concert Companion (hereafter known as the CC) and I packed the car full of hoagies, Coronas, yogurt, fiber bars and a nice sturdy tent, and set out Friday night on the 2 1/2-hour trip from Seattle to George.  In the morning we woke up to sunny skies and a slew of young, unwashed, bleary-eyed yet still really attractive festivalgoers.  Everyone was friendly and out to have a good time.  Some entrepreunerial folks set up a grill with hot dogs, tacos and breakfast burritos in preparation for the drunk munchies.  Once you've all shared the same lineup of Portapotties, had a few beers, and brushed your teeth together in a makeshift sink, the camaraderie pretty much starts a-flowin'.

And now, here's a breakdown of noteworthy events, day-by-day...

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Latest comment by: Anonymous: "Pavement = worst set of the weekend Massive Attack/LCD Soundsystem = Tie for best sets that were completely different from each other but equally awesome!"

What to do after the TIG New Pornographers listening party tonight

Tonight is kind of special, and not in a weak beer tasting way. There's tons of super fun socializing stuff to do!

First there's the Three Imaginary Girls-sponsored New Pornographers' album Together listening party early at 6 PM at the best coffee shop in Greenwood, Neptune (8415 Greenwood Avenue North). This would be a sweet chance to hang out with TIG people, the Greenwood gang, and New Pornographers' fans, who are to class and sass what a just out of juvie 40 ouncer-lugging Juggalo is to an Insane Clown Posse listening par-tay. The new album has honey-crackling Neko Case co-vocals, tons of sauteed hooks, and deep chocolate cello. Come get your fresh ground bean buzz on and hear it on Neptune's gnarly s-system with fellow underground rock connoisseurs.

What are you doing later then? Here's one suggestion: Ladies lounging at Cafe Society at Sole Repair at 9 PM.

After that, I'm going to take off for with my ride to Capitol Hill, to 1001 E. Pike to see Sole Repair's new swanky lounge lizard-palooza, Cafe Society, hosted by two of the smartest, sweetest, most awesome Seattle leading ladies Jennifer Petersen (of Sportin' Life Records) and Sarah Walczyk (Powerful Voices).

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Latest comment by: imaginary liz: "This does sound *amazing* !!! Thanks for the recommendation! "

New Pornographers — Together

(Three Imaginary Girls is excited to present a very special GET TOGETHER to have a sneak listen to the brand new NOT YET RELEASED album from the New Pornographers on Friday, April 23 at Neptune Coffee (at 8415 Greenwood Ave N.) from 6p-7:30p. The evening is free.)

We are on the pendant eve of Matador's supergroup The New Pornographers' gypsy-caravan tour, including dates with The Dutchess & The Duke, Imaad Wasif, The Dodos, and The Mountain Goats (yow!). Starting in London May 19 and ending up in Madison, WI in August, they will all be scrambling on stage to send up their surround sound power pop operas at George, Washington during the Sasquatch Festival on May 31.

This album is an essential 2010 purchase, and if pre-ordered from the Matador store, you'll also get a 7 " with three songs originally recorded by notorious Detroit psychedelic group Outrageous Cherry. Don't miss them at Sasquatch, and come hear the sneak peak at Neptune Coffee in Seattle this Friday night!

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This Friday 4/23: New Pornographers, TBTL, Arrested Development Trivia, prizes, and more{!} at Neptune Coffee

New Pornographers and Gob and Luke

 

Three Imaginary Girls is excited to present a very special GET TOGETHER to have a sneak listen to the brand new NOT YET RELEASED album from the New Pornographers on Friday, April 23 at Neptune Coffee (at 8415 Greenwood Ave N.) from 6p-7:30p. The evening is free.

Besides getting to hear the newest release by the critically-acclaimed New Pornographers in its entirety well before the release date (which is May 4 on Matador Records), this happiest of hour event will have 21+ drink specials (thanks PBR!) and a bucket of amazing giveaways such as pair of one-day tickets to Sasquatch for Monday 5/31 (the day the New Pornographers will take the stage) and various New Pornographers objects like posters, pretty pretty vinyl and the like.

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listmania continues: keenan's top 20 favorite albums of the decade

photo by trickshot photography

{Long Winters photo by Trickshot Photography}

Because I'm some kind of masochist and a total nerd, I've been slaving over this list, keeping it brief (harder than you'd think!) at my favorite 20 albums of the decade without duplicating a band (even harder). Side note: I've probably forgotten something I really, really love, so let's just call this how I feel right this minute. These are the albums I know every note and breath of by heart and I love as complete albums with all of my soul. These are albums that in my humble opinion have no skipable track and are works of beauty in their entirety. I'd also like to point out that these are my favorite albums, as I tend to shy away from calling them "the best", as really, it's just my opinion, and who am I to tell you that you're wrong for not liking these records? (Though, if you catch me in a potentially altered state, I may completely negate that and call any number of these THE GREATEST of all time and call you wrong to your face if you disagree.) I digress. Here they are!

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Latest comment by: imaginary lori: "I love your list. I'd forgotten my love of Figure 8 until I heard it on the KEXP countdown."

Death Cab for Cutie in the Park

Nick Harmer of Death Cab for Cutie / photography by Laura Musselman

at Marymoor Park

Combine the gorgeous summertime drive to Redmond, the grassy knolls, the impeccable soundsystem, and the energy of these spectacular bands -- and you've got a one-of-a-kind warm-weather blissy magic night that concert postcards are made out of.

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Latest comment by: keenan dowers: "Was "405" full band or solo? Wish I'd been there! I've seen the New Pornographers several times without Neko (and only once with), and they were still fantastic, but they obviously can't play the great Neko hits."

Destroyer seduces the Crocodile

Photos by Laura Musselman

at The Crocodile

Dan Bejar has always been a source of musical mysticism for me. I adore the New Pornographers, have been through lengthy Destroyer-only phases and have grown to love Swan Lake. His odd, slightly nasally but illuminatingly piercing, voice is completely original to him and coupled with his evocative songwriting, comes close to perfection at times.

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Tonight's Recommended Show: Destroyer at the Crocodile

The ever-prolific and oddly-voiced Dan Bejar will bring his Destroyer act to the new and improved Crocodile, Wednesday at 8pm. Tickets are only $12... a helluva deal!

Dan is a genius writer and has put his vocals to the test with nine, count them NINE, albums as Destroyer. He also formed supergroup Swan Lake with members from Frog Eyes and Wolf Parade, as well as his most infamous endeavour as co-songwriter for the New Pornographers.

Don't miss out on this rare chance to see Dan in all his glory. And come check out the awesome Croc!

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Latest comment by: Imaginary Shrie: "Come support Bejar. His hair is great! IGshr*e"