Monday, August 29, 2011

Music Notes: Marissa Nadler Interview, More "Today" Show Concerts, Steve Cropper Talks About His Idols


Video for Marissa Nadler's "Alabaster Queen," from her self-titled album. 

Here's a mishmash of musical news, with notes on live performances, interviews with musicians, and more.
  • Legendary guitarist Steve Cropper has played with many greats over the decades. On his latest album, he pays tribute to his idols, the 5 Royales. Hear an interview with Cropper here.
  • Marissa Nadler is the subject of an interview in The Rumpus. I really like this singer-songwriter's new self-titled album, and will be interested to learn more about her.
  • Two more shows have been added to the "Today" Show free concert series: Blondie (on Sept. 12) and Lady Antebellum (Sept. 13) will play the popular early-morning series in Rockefeller Plaza. (Info via NewYorkology.com)
  • YouTube has signed a licensing deal with music publishers, ending a four-year legal battle. Under the deal, which covers songwriting rights, YouTube will pay licensing fees to the National Music Publishers Association. According to the L.A. Times, the deal "paves the way for YouTube and Google to begin monetizing user-generated videos that contain music written by artists represented by the NMPA."
  • The 10th anniversary of the film "O Brother Where Art Thou" is being marked with the release of a two-CD collection featuring more old-timey music from the movie, featuring artists who weren't on the original disc (which is included as part of the set), such as Van Dyke Parks, Colin Linden, and Alan O'Bryant. It also features more songs from the performers who appeared on the 2001 album.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Concert Updates & Free Music Downloads for Hurricane Irene

Spend the hurricane weekend downloading free MP3 sampler albums, like this Kill Rock Stars 20th anniversary compilation.

I was set to write a post yesterday about free concerts coming up for this weekend... and then the news of Hurricane Irene broke. Needless to say, if the storm comes anywhere near shore, any outdoor concerts are going to be cancelled.

I wish that I had posted info about Thursday's free show featuring Wavves and Dee Dee from the Dum Dum Girls at the East River Amphitheater, since today's rain apparently held up and the concert indeed took place. (If anyone went to it, please post your reactions in the comments section below.)

This weekend's shows were to include the H-Mag Music Festival at Hoboken's Pier A park on Saturday, featuring The Walkmen and School of Seven Bells, among others. The good news is that the show will be taking place, and soon. A note on the H-Mag Music Festival website says, "The Music Fest WILL be rescheduled to an upcoming weekend in September with date TBA as soon as possible."

The Afro-Punk Festival in Commodore Barry Park in Brooklyn is still a go, it seems... for now. Santigold, Das Racist, Gym Class Heroes, and others are scheduled to play on Saturday, while Cee Lo Green, Toshi Reagan, Janelle Monae, and others are set to take the stage on Sunday.

An update on the Afro-Punk site reads, "The program of the Afro-Punk Festival hasn't changed until further notice, as this is a rain or shine event. We care about your safety and we'll make announcements if we have to modify the program." For the latest weather updates, check the Afro-Punk Twitter account.

(Brooklyn Vegan notes that a couple of artists have said that the Afro-Punk fest is cancelled. Let's hope the organizers issue an announcement soon to sort this all out.)

For indoor free shows that may or may not be taking place this weekend, see the Oh My Rockness free shows list.

Regarding the big for-pay festival set to take place this weekend—the Dave Matthews Band Caravan on Governors Island—the show will take place as scheduled on Friday, but the Saturday and Sunday shows have been postponed.

If you're hanging out indoors this weekend and don't have to evacuate the premises, this will be the perfect chance to download some free music, and Amazon.com has a new batch of free samplers to choose from. Among them:
There are many more, so check them out and get downloading. Assuming your electricity doesn't go out...

Monday, August 22, 2011

Free Album Streaming: New CDs from Dave Stewart, Stephin Merritt, CSS, & More


Video for "The Gypsy Girl and Me," from Dave Stewart's new album.

After last week's free preview of the debut album by Jeff Bridges, I was curious to see what album previews would be showing up online this week. Well, how about "The Blackbird Diaries," the first solo album in 13 years by Dave Stewart (of The Eurythmics), recorded in Nashville with guests including Stevie Nicks and Colbie Caillat?  Or a collection of outtakes and rarities from Stephin Merritt of The Magnetic Fields? Patti Smith is also represented with "Outside Society," the first single-disc retrospective (18 songs) to span her entire career.

Some other new previews this week that I haven't heard yet but am looking forward to:
"Dos" by Andrea Echeverri, half of the Colombian rock band Aterciopelados ... a new CD from Canadian singer-songwriter Ana Egge ... the self-titled album by Committed, the gospel-singing winners of NBC's a cappella singing competition, "The Sing-Off" ... "La Liberacion," the latest album by the always entertaining Brazilian party-rock band CSS ... and "Tassili," the newest effort by Tinariwen, the guitar-based collective from Mali.

See the websites below for even more free album previews, since the titles below are just a sampling. Generally the albums stream online for one week; I give the date if the album is available longer than that.

Spinner.com's Listening Party:
"The Blackbird Diaries" by Dave Stewart
"Obscurities" by Stephin Merritt
"La Liberacion" by CSS
"Rise Ye Sunken Ships" by We Are Augustines
"Bad Blood" by Ana Egge
"Outside Society" by Patti Smith (a greatest-hits album)
"Let Alone Sea" by Arrica Rose & the ...'s

NPR First Listen:
"Dos" by Andrea Echeverri

KCRW Album Preview: 
"Tassili" by Tinariwen (streaming through Sept. 20)

AOL Music Listening Party: 
"Committed" by Committed

Which albums are you looking forward to hearing the most?

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Singer Daria Musk to Play Live Google Hangout Concert Tonight


Singer-songwriter Daria Musk hosts her latest Google hangout concert tonight at 6 p.m. Eastern.

Singer-songwriter Daria Musk has attracted thousands of curious viewers and many new fans with the two live concerts she has held on Google Plus (also called Google+ or G+), taking advantage of G+'s features for sharing and commenting on live video through the "hangout" feature. And she'll be holding her third "Google hangout concert" tonight, August 20th, at 6 p.m. Eastern time (you can watch above).

Sometimes a new technology can give an up-and-coming musician a big break; other times a performer can give a new technology a jump start. Both may be taking place in the case of Musk and Google Plus, the search giant's latest move into social media.

I heard of Musk when she held her second concert a few weeks ago and watched part of it. I had to run out and do errands for an hour or so, and was surprised that when I got back home Musk was still singing and playing… and using G+'s features to chat with viewers from around the U.S. and the world. (You can see Musk's Google Plus posts here, and add her to your circles.)

I found out the next morning that the Connecticut-based singer-songwriter's Google hangout concert had lasted seven and a half hours (including breaks to chat with fans and talk about her music, career, etc.). The promotions for tonight's hangout concert say it "Goes all night," so it sounds like you can expect another marathon evening of music from the engaging singer and songwriter. You can watch the concert at the window above or on YouTube.

You can chat with Musk during the concert at www.hangoutparty.com or reach her on Twitter using the hashtag #DariaMusk.

Musk was inspired by her hangout concerts to write a song, "+1 Me," that you can download free. And she has an EP (which includes "+1 Me") which you can buy on iTunes. You can see her videos at her YouTube page, youtube.com/dariamusk, and follow her on Twitter at @DariaMusk.

It's hard to tell what the future of Google Plus will be. But Daria Musk's career has certainly gotten a big boost from the technology's live hangout and sharing features.

Watch Daria Musk's hangout concert above starting at 6 p.m. Eastern, or watch on YouTube.


Daria Musk performing "You Move Me" during her second Google hangout concert.


Thursday, August 18, 2011

Concert Notes: Cheap Trick in Brooklyn Tonight, Black Eyed Peas Reschedule Central Park Show, & More


Tickets for Wild Flag at Bowery Ballroom on Oct. 18th are on sale now. Above, the band plays "Future Crimes" at South by Southwest 2011.

There's still plenty of punch left in the free summer concert season, and a slate of good shows for September and beyond is already shaping up. Here's what's happening with some selected shows:

* Cheap Trick in Coney Island at the Seaside Summer Concert series, tonight, 7:30 p.m. The Seaside site lists the opening act as Mickey Leigh's New Yorkestra, but I've seen another opening act mentioned elsewhere. West 21st Street and Surf Avenue, next to the Brooklyn Cyclones' baseball stadium.

* The Black Eyed Peas Central Park concert has been rescheduled for Sept. 30th. As you'll remember, their June show was cancelled before it started by heavy rain, high winds, and lightning. As before, the "Concert 4 NYC" will benefit the Robin Hood Fund. The site has info on how to attend if you won or bought tickets for the June show. You can also buy tickets for the Sept. 30th show (expensive, but it benefits the charity). 7 p.m., the Great Lawn, Central Park.

* Wild Flag tickets for Bowery Ballroom on Oct. 18th went on sale yesterday. If you're a fan of female-powered indie rock, you'll want to see the all-woman "supergroup" in October (especially if, like me, you missed their recent show at the Williamsburg Waterfront with Sonic Youth).

Wild Flag is also playing Maxwell's in Hoboken on Oct. 16th; get tickets here.The Oct. 15th show at Bell House is sold out.

The band consists of two-thirds of Sleater-Kinney (Carrie Brownstein and Janet Weiss), Mary Timony (Helium and her solo work), and Rebecca Cole (The Minders). Tickets will sell fast for Wild Flag, which drops its self-titled debut album Sept. 13th. (Pre-order "Wild Flag"at Amazon.com.)

* The Union County Music Festival in Clark, NJ will be held the weekend of Sept. 16th through 18th. I was impressed with the lineup at this free festival last year, and this year's has a fun roster of artists, too, including Blondie, Neon Trees, Nicole Atkins and the Black Sea, Southside Johnny, Ed Kowalczyk of Live, The Smithereens, Paul Rodgers, and Toad the Wet Sprocket. I'll have more info on this festival in a forthcoming post.

What shows are you looking forward to seeing this weekend? Leave your comments below!

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Free Album Streaming: New CDs from Stephen Malkmus & The Jicks, Jeff Bridges, Beirut, Muppets Covers, & More


Above: Preview the self-titled first album by Jeff Bridges this week (link below). In the album trailer above, Bridges talks about the album (which drops today), with snippets from some of the tunes.

There's an unusual mix of old and new musicians in this week's free album previews. Pavement member Stephen Malkmus is back with his latest solo album with his backing band The Jicks, and Beirut returns with its third full-length release.

But there's also the first album from Jeff Bridges—yes, The Dude abides with his own disc of tunes, produced by T-Bone Burnett. Although Bridges says he's been playing music since he was 13, playing a country singer in the movie "Crazy Heart" left him with some songs and the impetus to record them.

And if you're a fan of The Muppets, you'll want to check out the album of pop and rock heavyweights (including OK Go, Weezer, Amy Lee, and My Morning Jacket) covering tunes made famous by the soft-and-fuzzy stars of TV and film.

As usual, the albums are generally available for free streaming only for a week (sometimes more); the exact date is listed if known.

KCRW Album Preview: 
"Mirror Traffic" by Stephen Malkmus & The Jicks (available for streaming through Aug. 28)
"Ghostbird" by Zee Avi (streaming through Sept. 13)

NPR First Listen:
"The Rip Tide" by Beirut
"Apokalypsis" by Chelsea Wolfe
"Muppets: The Green Album" by various artists
"Neon Blue Bird" by Ollabelle

AOL Music Listening Party: 
"Shallow Bay: The Best of Breaking Benjamin" by Breaking Benjamin
"Songs and Stories" by Guy Clark

Spinner.com's Listening Party:
"Jeff Bridges" by Jeff Bridges
"The Duke and the King" by The Duke and the King

And AOL Music and Spinner have many more new albums for free preview this week, including "Bright Lights" by Dead Man Winter (featuring Dave Simonett from Trampled by Turtles), "Shine" by Speed the Plough, "Burning Your House Down" by The Jim Jones Revue, "Out of Love" by Mister Heavenly (featuring members of Islands, Man Man, and Modest Mouse), and "Girl Graffiti" by Hotel Lights (featuring former Ben Folds Five drummer Darren Jessee).

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Hear "How Come You Never Go There," the First Single from Feist's New Album



It's been quite a while, but Feist has released the first single from her forthcoming album, "Metals" (which drops on Oct. 4th). She put out the song, "How Come You Never Go There," on her YouTube page a couple of days ago; I came across it on NPR Music.

This is Feist's first album since her breakthrough "The Reminder," which was way back in 2007. According to her record label, Canada's Arts and Crafts, "Recorded between Toronto and Big Sur, California and co-produced by longtime collaborators Chilly Gonzales and Mocky, as well as newcomer Valgeir SigurĂ°sson (Bjork, Bonnie "Prince" Billy), Metals marks Feist's celebratory return to the world stage."

Although this is the first full-length song from "Metals," Feist has been releasing a series of teasers (there are to be 12 in all) with snippets from various songs. (It appears a new one is to be released Monday, Aug. 15th, according to her website.) See the track listing for the new album at the end of this post.

Two of the "vignettes," as they're being called, are below. The snippet called "#1" has a techno sound, with drumming playing over time-lapse photography. In "#3," Arts and Crafts says, we see "Feist, Gonzales, Mocky, and SigurĂ°sson at work on the album," with a string section. (See the Feist YouTube page or her website for more video snippets and information.)








The "Tour Dates" section of her website is empty, but the site does show the track listing for the album (which is available for pre-order through Amazon.com):

"Metals" – Track listing:
1. The Bad In Each Other
2. Graveyard
3. Caught A Long Wind
4. How Come You Never Go There
5. A Commotion
6. Bittersweet Melodies
7. Anti Pioneer
8. Undiscovered First
9. Cicadas And Gulls
10. Woe Be
11. Comfort Me
12. Get It Wrong Get It Right


Feist has always experimented with different sounds and genres on each album, so I can only imagine what surprises she's got cooked up with four years to work on a new release. I'm looking forward to it.

Friday, August 12, 2011

Music Notes, Ladies' Edition: Willie Mae Benefit Show & More

Help support girls who rock at the Willie Mae benefit in Brooklyn Saturday.

Any regular reader of this blog knows that I'm a big fan of female artists, but this edition of Music Notes is devotedly solely to women (and girls) who rock.

* 7th Sound Wave: Benefit for Willie Mae Rock Camp for Girls: the Brooklyn training ground for female rockers will be the beneficiary of a show this Saturday night at Manifesta Loft in Brooklyn (315 Seigel St., Apt 217). The performers will be female or female-fronted bands, including teen punk-pop trio Care Bears on Fire and Big Nils (featuring Coco Moore, daughter of Sonic Youth's Thurston Moore and Kim Gordon).

Also on the bill: Bad Credit No Credit, Shady Hawkins, and Titus Andronicus member Amy Klein (her feminist group Permanent Wave is organizing the benefit). Klein will also be taking part in a panel discussion on women in music, with participants spanning the generations.

I've missed several Willie Mae benefits in the past, but really want to catch this one—though it overlaps somewhat with a good country/bluegrass show in the Roots of American Music series at Lincoln Center Out of Doors. (The good news is that the 7th Sound Wave show begins with the panel at 8 p.m., and since the LCOOD show is at 6, it's possible to catch part of the first and then see all the music at the second.)

The Willie Mae benefit is only $7, and for that you get to see a number of up-and-coming female rockers (plus the panel, if you get there early). You can't beat that, in my book.

Permanent Wave's 7th SOUND WAVE: Benefit for the Willie Mae Rock Camp for Girls
Manifesta Loft, 315 Seigel St., Apt 217
Brooklyn, NY
All ages; admission: $7
(link to brief article with map)

Celebrate the release of the Runaways tribute record tonight at the Jersey Shore.

* Speaking of spanning the generations of female rockers (and of Care Bears on Fire), CBOF will be playing tonight, Aug. 12th, at the release party for Take It or Leave it, a tribute album to The Runaways. The show is at Brighton Bar in Long Branch, NJ. Also playing will be Richard Barone (formerly of the Bongos), Frankenstein 3000, The Easy Outs, Clinical Trials, and more.

The album, Take It Or Leave It - A Tribute To the Queens of Noise: The Runaways, is a two-disc set that was released on June 28th and features contributions from Shonen Knife, The Donnas, the Dandy Warhols, and David Johansen of The New York Dolls, and many others. (Buy Take It Or Leave It at Amazon.com)

The Runaways Tribute Album Release Party
Brighton Bar, 121 Brighton Ave., Long Branch, NJ
Admission: $10
(directions and info on the venue)

The Go-Go's (seen here playing in NYC) received their star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

* Coincidentally, these concerts are happening the same week that perhaps the most successful all-female rock band, the Go-Go's, got a big honor. Yesterday the band received its star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, and as far as I know all of the current band members were on hand. You can see photos from the Go-Go's Walk of Fame festivities here.

Congratulations to the Go-Go's!

Tuesday, August 09, 2011

Free Summer Concerts: Nicole Atkins Tonight; Deer Tick Thurs.; Roots of American Music Fest. this Weekend

Nicole Atkins plays a free show outside City Winery at 5:30 Tuesday.

Another week of free concerts is underway, and here are some of my picks.

[UPDATE: The Nicole Atkins show is postponed because of the heavy rain, City Winery announced at 4:30 p.m. on its Twitter and Facebook pages. They say they will try to reschedule a make-up date.]

Tues., Aug. 9th: Nicole Atkins at Hudson Square: the South Jersey native plays the second-to-last show in the after-work Hudson Square series, which takes place in the parking lot behind City Winery. Atkins recently came out with her second album, "Mondo Amore." Showtime is 5:30 p.m. City Winery is at 155 Varick St. between Vandam and Spring Street; you can enter the festival area from Spring Street (between Varick and Hudson) or from Vandam between Varick and Hudson.

Wed., Aug. 10th: performance artist Laurie Anderson takes the stage at Lincoln Center Out of Doors; also on the bill is fiddler and composer Todd Reynolds in a debut collaboration with Sxip Shirey and Adam Matta (of the Carolina Chocolate Drops) and a section of violinists. Showtime is 7:30 p.m. at Damrosch Park Bandshell (map/directions) in Lincoln Center.

Thurs., Aug. 11th: Deer Tick and Dom at RiverRocks (Pier 54): Led by John McCauley, Deer Tick brings its blend of punk, blues, country and more to the RiverRocks series at Hudson River Park. (Hear an early performance by Deer Tick in what may have been their first radio broadcast set, from WNYC in January 2006.) Also on the Thursday's bill are Dom and Translations. Doors: 6 p.m. Hudson River Park, Pier 54 (map and directions to Pier 54.)

And the Roots of American Music Festival closes out Lincoln Center Out of Doors this weekend, with a series of great roots/Americana musicians Saturday and Sunday. The whole thing ends with a bang late Sunday afternoon with a show featuring legendary soul guitarist Steve Cropper, Bettye Lavette, The Bar-Kays, and the North Mississippi All-Stars Duo. On the schedule:

Sat., Aug. 13th, 2 p.m.: banjo player and singer Abigail Washburn; folk-rock singer Sid Selvidge with Sons of Mud Boy; and Sun Records oral histories. Location: Hearst Plaza Stage (venue info), Lincoln Center.

Sat., Aug. 13th, 5 p.m.: Ebony Hillbillies, a black string band with "a rootsy, homegrown style that was a key element in the genesis of all-American music: jazz, blues, bluegrass, rockabilly, rock and roll, and country." Location: Josie Robertson Plaza (map/directions), Lincoln Center.

Sat., Aug 13th, 6 p.m.:  country and bluegrass show with Marty Stuart and His Fabulous Superlatives; Sonny Burgess; Cowboy Jack Clement; Rudy “Tutti” Grayzell and Hayden Thompson; Dailey and Vincent. Location: Damrosch Park Bandshell (map/directions)

Sun., Aug. 14th, 5 p.m.: Steve Cropper and Friends: Tribute to the 5 Royales (New York debut) with Bettye Lavette, Ellis Hooks, and Dylan LeBlanc; The Bar-Kays; North Mississippi All-Stars Duo; Big Sam's Funky Nation. Location: Damrosch Park Bandshell (map/directions)

Saturday, August 06, 2011

Free at Summerstage Tonight: "Shelebration!" - Shel Silverstein Celebrated in Words & Music

"Shelebration!" at SummerStage will celebrate the many books, songs, and poems by the late Shel Silverstein.

The late Shel Silverstein had such a diverse creative output—children's books, pop songs, plays, and much more—that it's taking a whole cavalcade of artists to celebrate his legacy tonight in a free SummerStage show in Central Park.

"Shelebration! A Tribute to the Works of Shel Silverstein" is a tribute to the author's work by an amazingly varied list of performers, from Lou Reed and Laurie Anderson to Suzanne Vega, Melvin Van Peebles, Martha Wainwright, and more. There are actors such as Annabella Sciorra and Chloe Webb; comedians including Richard Belzer and Darrell Hammond (formerly of "Saturday Night Live"); and rock singers such as Sally Timms (of The Mekons) and Emily Haines (of Metric). (See the SummerStage website for the full "Shelebration!" lineup.)

And the SummerStage description says the show will feature "the debut of works from Silverstein’s forthcoming poetry collection, 'Every Thing On It.'"

Shel Silverstein wrote "The Cover of the Rolling Stone" and other hits.
Although Silverstein (who died in 1999) is best known to many millions as the author of the children's books "The Giving Tree" and "A Light in the Attic," he also wrote plays, poetry, and songs, as well as being an illustrator and recording artist.

It wasn't until many years after the fact that I realized Silverstein was the writer of some of the most well-known, chart-topping hit songs of their day, including “The Unicorn” (the Irish Rovers), “A Boy Named Sue” (Johnny Cash), and two hit singles for Dr. Hook and the Medicine Show: "The Cover of the Rolling Stone" and "Sylvia's Mother."

If you're a fan of any form of Shel Silverstein's work, or just want to see some very talented individuals from different fields celebrating his work, you might want to head over to the SummerStage Mainstage in Central Park tonight. (For updates on gate opening time and possible weather-related changes, follow the SummerStage Twitter account.)

"Shelebration! A Tribute to the Works of Shel Silverstein" 
Saturday, Aug. 6th, 7 p.m.
SummerStage Mainstage, Rumsey Playfield, Central Park (map and directions)
Info: www.summerstage.org or (212) 360-2777

Thursday, August 04, 2011

Free Summer Concerts: Aretha Franklin (Tonight); Ra Ra Riot, Mission of Burma, Friendly Fires, & More this Weekend


 Above: Ra Ra Riot's video for "Boy," from their 2010 album "The Orchard."

The blitz of free summer concerts continues, and after last night's rainouts the skies look clear for the much-anticipated Aretha Franklin make-up show at Coney Island tonight. The show begins at 7:30 p.m. at West 21st St. and Surf Ave., next to the Brooklyn Cyclones baseball stadium. See directions at the Seaside Summer Concerts home page.

The action continues on Friday night when Ra Ra Riot, Delicate Steve, and Buke & Gass (pronounced "byuke" and "gace") play Celebrate Brooklyn in Prospect Park.

Hailing from Syracuse, Ra Ra Riot made a big splash a few years ago with their album "The Rhumb Line," combining catchy pop accented with a violin and viola. Their latest album, "The Orchard," came out last summer.

The most interesting band on Friday's Celebrate Brooklyn bill is Buke and Gass, a duo that plays an mix of modified steampunk-style instruments, including the "buke" (baritone ukelele) and "gass" (a combination of a guitar and bass).


Above: Cults play "Abducted" live at the WFUV studios. 

On Sunday you've got to choose between two free rock shows in Manhattan happening at the same time. Summerstage's Central Park Mainstage (directions) presents Friendly Fires, The Naked and Famous, and Cults at 3 p.m. I'm not too familiar with the first two bands, but have been enjoying the music of the male-female duo Cults the last month or so. You can read an interview they did with WFUV's The Alternate Side here (which includes the video above).

Also at 3 p.m. Sunday, the influential late '70s/early '80s band Mission of Burma plays the Beekman Beer Garden (at South and Beekman Sts., on the north side of Pier 17). Bands ranging from R.E.M., Nirvana, and Throwing Muses has cited Mission of Burma as an inspiration to their own work. As of now the Beekman gig is the only date on their tour schedule, so if you want to see them you'll want to get to this show. Mission of Burma's latest album is "The Sound, The Speed, The Light." (directions to Beekman Beer Garden.)

Tuesday, August 02, 2011

Free Album Streaming: New CDs from Fountains of Wayne, The Horrors, Keb' Mo', Antigone Rising, & More

The new Fountains of Wayne album "Sky Full of Holes" is one of the new albums streaming for free this week.

"Sky Full of Holes," the new album by Fountains of Wayne, is the highlight of this week's free album previews, but there's some other good stuff for streaming. (As for FoW, I went to one of the band's sold-out shows at the intimate confines of Maxwell's, where the crowd was treated to previews of "The Summer Place" and other songs from the new album, and of course some old favorite tunes.)

Other albums for free preview this week new releases from The Horrors, contemporary blues singer and guitarist Keb' Mo', and New York all-female band Antigone Rising. The new effort from the latter, "23 Red," has them sounding a lot more mellow than I remember them from years ago, and some of the tunes even have a country feel to them.

And there seem to be a number of members of well-known bands members out on their own with new projects, including Moonface (Wolf Parade frontman Spencer Krug), Ra Ra Riot bass player Mathieu Santos, and Collections of Colonies of Bees (featuring members of Volcano Choir, who collaborated with Bon Iver's Justin Vernon).

Spinner.com's Listening Party:
"Sky Full of Holes" by Fountains of Wayne
"On the Ocean EP" by Guster
"Organ Music Not Vibraphone Like I'd Hoped" by Moonface
"Massachusetts 2010" by Mathieu Santos
"Giving" by Collections of Colonies of Bees

KCRW Album Preview: 
"Skying" by The Horrors (streaming until Aug. 14)

AOL Music Listening Party: 
"23 Red" by Antigone Rising
"The Reflection" by Keb' Mo'
"King" by O.A.R.