My Thermals Session

The Ther­mals were kind enough to stop by the Com­cast Cen­ter when they were in town to play a few songs and talk to me about their new album, Now We Can See. The Ther­mals are the sort of band who do every­thing right, but I’m not sure they’ll ever get the main­stream recog­ni­tion they deserve.

I have to say I’m extreme­ly proud of every­one who par­tic­i­pat­ed in mak­ing this look so great. I wish it were pos­si­ble to do more, but we sim­ply could­n’t get enough trac­tion to sup­port it. Tell me how you think it came out!

I’m Interviewing Mastodon Today

Today is a real­ly excit­ing day and not just because it’s Fri­day and the sun is final­ly shin­ing. I’m bring­ing Mastodon into the Com­cast Cen­ter to talk about their new album, Crack the Skye! I know that inter­view­ing a band on tour isn’t that big a deal, but it’s a major step for­ward for as I try to work more orig­i­nal music con­tent into my work­flow. The idea of hav­ing reg­u­lar inter­view and per­for­mance fea­turettes is one I hope bands, labels, and fans will appre­ci­ate. Of course, the pos­si­bil­i­ty of my face being some­where in the video on demand music fold­er is excit­ing as well.

I know. I used the word “work­flow.” If you’re pro­fes­sion­al­ly involved in any aspect of the music busi­ness, espe­cial­ly in edi­to­r­i­al, you already know how dif­fi­cult it is to do this sort of thing when peo­ple are clam­or­ing to find out whether or not Madon­na will be allowed to adopt in Malawi. Take my word for it: it’s hard.

Hav­ing said that, the Ther­mals are com­ing in next week to play a few songs for us before their show at John­ny Bren­da’s next Tues­day night. I’m real­ly look­ing for­ward to that, too! It’s an excit­ing time. Now the key is just build­ing momen­tum. Wish me luck!

The Thermals Sign to Kill Rock Stars

I got the press release that the Ther­mals signed to Kill Rock Stars just as I got home from the office. I think it’s great that they were able to stay on a clas­sic North­west label, but it seemed more strange that they would­n’t re-up with Sub Pop.

Coin­ci­den­tal­ly, Swedes Loney, Dear — a band signed in the post-“Young Folks” hys­te­ria — recent­ly depart­ed Sub Pop as well. Not to get too pulpy, but is there more to this than meets the eye? Loney, Dear were poor­ly reviewed and their Sub Pop debut, Loney, Noir, was a stinker. But the Ther­mals seemed to be the sort of act that Beg­gars Group would’ve poached in a heart­beat just a few years ago.

I’ll stop beat­ing around the bush: I’m shocked that a band like the Ther­mals would end up on such a tiny label at this point in their devel­op­ment. I know the music indus­try is bad, but labels like XL are still sign­ing bands and reis­su­ing albums a year after every­one in the blo­gos­phere down­loaded them. But that’s just business.

Think of it anoth­er way: if Deer­hoof — a band that crit­ics once show­ered with praise — does­n’t gen­er­ate heat a month after drop­ping their new album, Offend Mag­gie (7.6, no less), can they work a band that may have out­lived its hype cycle? At this point in his­to­ry, it does­n’t even seem to mat­ter if a band is hit­ting its stride. Every­thing is yes­ter­day’s papers the moment it leaks.

Don’t believe me? Read this pul­lquote in the Pitch­fork news piece from this after­noon and tell me it did­n’t make you wince.