Soundtrack Gets Close to the Ground Print
Music - Music News
Written by John M. James   
Wednesday, 01 August 2007 03:31

Share This Place The soundtrack to a fascinating multimedia performance with a bug's eye view is released next week by indie stalwart K Records. Commissioned earlier this year by the Portland Institute for Contemporary Art, Mirah & the Spectratone International's Share This Place is a cool collaboration with Kyle Hanson and Lori Goldston of Black Cat Orchestra, boasting a genesis that goes back to the observations of 19th Century entomologist J. Henri Fabré. The trio's parlor-room folk of lush vintage instruments accompanies filmmaker Britta Johnson's faux-insect stop-motion film - a taste of which can be found at (

Bringing to mind the Edwyn Collins' lyric about "too many protest singers and not enough protest songs," the aptly titled Time for Something New by Jon T. Howard is an album I believe Johnny Cash might have loved if he were still alive. Boasting everything Bruce Springsteen and John Mellencamp wish they still had in 'em, this talented Austin, Texas, wrong-side-of-the-tracks seed is akin to a poetic spirit stepchild of Mark Lanegan, Bruce Cockburn, John Trudell, and Tom T. Hall. A cover closes out the set, a spot-on sweet caress through the classic chestnut "What a Wonderful World." And if you don't like that song, you ain't got a heart. Interested? Look for it on the Mettafour/Kindred Rhythm imprint.


Television Alert:


The Late Show with David Letterman gets wild with Gogol Bordello tonight, Angelique Kidjo on Thursday, and Chris & Rich Robinson of the Black Crowes on Friday; The Tonight Show with Jay Leno welcomes Grace Potter on Thursday, Daddy Yankee on Friday, and Jon McLaughlin on Tuesday; and Late Night with Conan O'Brien features Mavis Staples on Thursday. Hopefully PBS will offer plenty of chances to catch Respect Yourself: The Stax Records Story this coming week, debuting tonight across the network and perfectly timed to reintroduce the label later this month in an expanded reissue of the Wattstax concert film from 1972.


New Releases Coming Tuesday, August 7:


54 Seconds - Postcards from California (Rock Ridge) the Bee Gees legacy lives on with Austin's Spencer Gibb, son of Robin, a vocalist and video producer

All Teeth & Knuckles - Club Hits to Hit the Clubs with (Lujo) bong-hittin' beats and bowel-rumbling alley meanderings from DJ UFO! and Patric Fallon's Sick Face alter ego

Natasha Bedingfield - N.B. (Epic) domestic issue of this UK hit

Marco Benevento - Live at Tonic (Ropeadope) three-CD set culled from a five-night stand, with guest Mike Gordon of Phish

The Brunettes - Structure & Cosmetics (Sub Pop) wickedly weird and delightfully tender label debut from New Zealand, plucking out a wishful boy-girl duet in "If You Were an Alien"

Carla Bruni - No Promises (Downtown/Barnes & Noble) smart project straight out of the library shelves with musical interpretations of poems by William Butler Yeats, W. H. Auden, and Emily Dickinson

Peter Case - Let Us Now Praise Sleepy John (Yep Roc) all new from the Plimsouls founder, with guest Richard Thompson

Drowning Pool - Full Circle (Eleven Seven) supporting the troops after their numerous USO tours of Baghdad and Kuwait, featuring the track "Soldiers"

Fuel - Angels & Devils (Epic) with new vocalist Toryn Green and former Godsmack drummer Tommy Stewart

Rory Gallagher - Live at Rockpalast (Eagle Rock) five complete concerts from the German stage spread over three DVDs

Deborah Harry - Necessary Evil (Eleven Seven) fifth solo album from the face of Blondie, now in her 60s and sharing some of the new material on Cyndi Lauper's True Colors Tour

Billie Holiday - Remixed & Reimagined (RCA Legacy) following the lead of the label's recent Nina Simone remix project, 14 classic tracks go under the production knife of DJ Logic, Nickodemus, Jazzy Nice, Tony Humphries, and Charles Feelgood

Bruce Hornsby, Jack DeJohnette, & Christian McBride - Camp Meeting (Legacy) jazz grooves featuring spins through the work of Thelonious Monk, Keith Jarrett, John Coltrane, and Miles Davis

The Hottest State - original motion picture soundtrack (Velour) songs by Jesse Harris, performed by Cat Power, Willie Nelson, the Black Keys, Feist, Bright Eyes, M. Ward, Norah Jones, and others

June - Make It Blur (Victory) Chicago quartet with big, catchy emo hooks, on tour this past month with Boys Night Out

Liars - "Plaster Casts of Everything" (Mute) new CD and seven-inch single with exclusive B sides

Marissa Nadler - Songs III: Bird on Water (Kemado) featuring a bonus cover of Neil Young's "Cortez the Killer"

Grace Potter & the Nocturnals - This Is Somewhere (Hollywood) co-produced with Mike Daly, formerly of Whiskeytown

Prefab Sprout - Steve McQueen: Legacy Edition (Legacy) two-CD expanded reissue

The Pretty Things - Balboa Island (Zoho Music) with an original lineup that's remained solid since 1965, in their first new music since 1999; the original rock-opera artists are back with new originals and a cover of Bob Dylan's "The Ballad of Hollis Brown"; look for special artwork by vocalist Phil May in the first pressing

Chuck Ragan - Feast or Famine (SideOneDummy) new acoustic album from the former frontman of Hot Water Music

Rocket Science - original motion picture soundtrack (Lakeshore) with new music from Clem Snide's Eef Barzelay

Romantica - America (2024 Records) mellow, sweet Americana from the Irish soul of Ben Kyle, backed by the stellar pedal-steel guitar of Eric Heywood

Joe Satriani - Surfing with the Alien (Epic Legacy) 20th-anniversary reissue, expanded with a bonus DVD packed with music videos, interviews, and a live concert from the 1988 Montreux Jazz Festival

Slightly Stoopid - Chronchitus (MRI/Stoopid) with guests Money Mark, G Love, and Fishbone's Angelo Moore

TGZ - Living Dangerously (King Mojo) new from former Allman Brothers Band guitarist Dan Toler

Today Is the Day - Willpower (SuperNova Records) reissue from 1994

Tuner - Pole (Unsung/Inner Knot) this cubic, tumbling duo is King Crimson drummer Pat Mastelotto and German multi-instrumentalist Markus Reuter with a variety of guest vocalists - a shadow-swirling, close-your-eyes, theatrical headphone experience reminiscent of Tool and early Peter Gabriel; inviting fellow drummers to play along with a downloadable, drum-free version of the 10-minute track "11-11"

Two Dollar Pistols - Here Today, Gone Tomorrow (8th House Records) produced by Southern Culture on the Skids' Rick Miller, this is twangy, tangy, authentic roots country with a sneer and a lonesome, empty bar glass; drenched in Clyde Mattlocks' gorgeous pedal-steel guitar in "Tortured Mind"

The Warriors - Genuine Sense of Outrage (Victory) crushing ragecore with guest vocalists Lemmy Kilmister of Motorhead, Andrew Neufeld of Comeback Kid, and Lou Koller of Sick of It All; on tour now with Evergreen Terrace and August Burns Red

ZO2 - Ain't It Beautiful (Riker Hill) hot off tour with Kiss and Poison

Zombie Ghost Train - Dealing the Death Card (SOS Records) grave-digging psychobilly from Australia

various artists - The Coolest Songs in the World: Volume 2 (Wicked Cool) more favorites from Little Steven's Underground Garage radio show, featuring The Donnas, The Crybabies, Buzzcocks, and Joey Ramone's love letter to "Maria Bartiromo"

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