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Music / Simon Doom
« on: April 28, 2016, 07:05:03 AM »
Simon Doom is Simon O'Connor's (Kuroma guitarist, European festival crowd riler during Kids, and all around super nice guy) project that he's been pouring his heart and talent into over the past couple of years.  I got to see him play in Brooklyn last year in a tiny venue and they splattered my brain all over the ceiling! They reminded me so much of an 80's band called Let's Active which was producer extraordinaire Mitch Easter's project.  Anyway, the EP drops tomorrow and you can read hear about all of the MGMT connections and take a listen here.


Introduce yourself to NYC new’s pop icon in the making—Simon Doom; an alt-rock Adonis image ripped from the silver screen, and high-throttling through your stereo-speaker. Known as the lead guitarist in Kuroma, who also works in the touring groups for MGMT & Craig Finn; Simon gifted us the following premiere listen to the forthcoming EP Negotiate With The Monkey available April 29 from Axis Mundi Records, engineered by Ayad Al Adhamy (Passion Pit, Team Spirit), and produced by MGMT’s Ben Goldwasser. The result is the sound of what sounds like a mythic group imagined from the celluloid style of cinema filmstar heroes that rocks & rolls with festival ready savoir faire with the sensible ability to emulate historical pop eras by way of osmosis. The result is like little you will be prepared for.

Negotiate With the Monkey begins with the title track that kicks off like the opening credit roll of the best counter culture film not-yet made. All levels of frequencies are tapped into like experiencing a big glamorous arena-style live set by a big fest headliner that commands the stage and crowd like a shepherd lording at the center of the heard’s gaze & attention. Such matters of idolatry & narcissims are further entertained on the quick-wheeling fuzz guitar gauntlet “To Be Admired” that deals head on with that beautiful face reflecting back in the mirror. Then the surf-storming “Roseate” saturates the scene in rose tinted hues of good fortune, guided by the thundering frenetic & frantic shouts & shakes that send everything speeding & sprialling to a head twisting conclusion. Join us after the following listen to Simon Doom’s new Negotiate EP, for an interview with the group’s fearless leader.

Bring us to the very beginning from when you first began your own solo creative ventures.

Well, as the only member of Kuroma who does not double as a touring member of MGMT, I found myself at home, with nothing to do, quite often in 2013-14 when all my dudes were out promoting MGMT’s last record. So I started writing and recording songs.

Originally, they were all songs I was writing for Kuroma, but after I recorded a couple demos, I kind of didn’t want anyone else to sing them. They were pretty personal. I was used to writing songs for other people to sing because I never considered myself a singer… which, I imagine, has something to do with me not being allowed to sing in my first band (Thulsa Doom) because I hadn’t gone through puberty yet.

As the lead guitarist in Kuroma, with members who also play with the touring bands for folks like Craig Finn, MGMT, etc; how in the hell do you all find the balance to focus on Simon Doom?

The key is to be chill and respectful of other people’s schedules. Chill vibes. No overplaying. Beers. Queso. Make sure there are new songs to learn so we don’t get bored… if it’s FUN people will make time for it, ya know?

Take us through what it was like for you in developing all the songs found on the analog tape fizz & fuzz of your heavy EP Negotiate With The Monkey?

Unlike the previous EP, all the tracks on the Negotiate record were recorded and played by me, without the band. I just got a new recording/demoing setup and wanted to try it out, so I quickly busted out very simple versions of the first three Simon Doom songs I wrote (which had yet to be recorded). I sent the tracks to Ayad just to see what he could do with ’em, and what he sent back sounded super full and impressive. He ran every individual track through a tape machine to tone down the digi quality of my initial recordings and really gave each tune character.

Can you elaborate too on how you and all were able to be able to really hone in on that sound working with Ayad Al Adhamy, Tommy Stinson, and as previously mentioned from MGMT, Ben Goldwasser? How did you all even begin to go about finding those sorts of deep frequencies?

Ben was one of the first people who suggested that Simon Doom become a real project after hearing the initial demos. He and I had worked together on the last Kuroma record, so I was really excited to have his help recording the first EP.

Tommy Stinson heard about us through a mutual friend and invited us up to do a semi-live EP recorded in his house in Hudson, NY. We put one of the tunes (“Punk Problems”) on the self-titled EP and the rest will be released later this year. Total dream come true because we are all HUGE Replacements fans.

But, like I said earlier, only Ayad was involved with Negotiate With the Monkey.

What else is good right now in NYC that the world isn’t paying attention to?

I dunno man. It’s hard to discover things before the internet does. I would say my favorite new local band is, Glyph City. They are the real thing. Definitely wanna give props to Collapsing Scenery. That’s an experience. Everyone should go to Frankel’s Delicatessen whenever they can. I do think most of the cool shit is actually going on in Australia.

What’s exciting everyone in the Simon Doom camp right now?

I would say that the number one most exciting thing is the SIMON DOOM ALBUM we are working on. We just finished tracking at Axis Mundi’s studio in Bushwick and everything is feeling great. We got both Ben Goldwasser and Andrew Vanwyngarden helping out with production duties, Ayad is in the mix, so many people coming out to help with this record. It’s really communal and groovy. It’s like the final episode of Seinfeld except, instead of all the characters from past episodes suing us, they are helping us make a great record. Also, it will hopefully be received better by critics and fans alike.

Simon Doom’s Negotiate With The Monkey EP will be available April 29 from Axis Mundi Records.

MGMT / Time To Pretend on Song Exploder plus contest
« on: January 19, 2016, 12:00:52 PM »
Everything you ever wanted to know about the song that got many of us into MGMT back in the day!
MGMT was formed by Ben Goldwasser and Andrew VanWyngarden in 2001. The song Time to Pretend was one they wrote early in their career. It first came out on their debut: the Time to Pretend EP in 2005. And three years after that, they put out a new version of the song, on their first full-length album, Oracular Spectactular, which was named album of the year by NME and was one of Rolling Stone’s top 20 albums of the decade. It went on to sell over a million copies worldwide. In this episode, Ben and Andrew trace how the song Time to Pretend was made, from its dorm room origins, to its first recording, to re-envisioning it with Grammy-winning producer Dave Fridmann. They also uncover the hidden sounds and easter eggs within the recording.
MGMT is giving away an exclusive white label pressing of the Time to Pretend EP on vinyl, signed by the band. If you’d like to enter to win the record, all you have to do is share a link to this episode, and tag MGMT and Song Exploder in your post. On Twitter and Instagram, their handle is @whoismgmt, and Song Exploder is just @songexploder.
You can buy “Time to Pretend,” from Oracular Spectacular on iTunes. You can also get the EP version of the song."

MGMT / Nick Alexander and a message from the fans
« on: November 15, 2015, 01:00:15 PM »

Nick and Polina Buckley

By now you've all read the heartbreaking news that friend of the band, Nick Alexander was one of the victims at Le Bataclan.  Nick worked Merch for MGMT and was doing the same for EODM on Friday night in Paris.  A memorial account has been set up.

A message from the fund's creator Miguel Benavides can be read below...
Nick Alexander Memorial Fund
About this fund: My initial goal for this find was to benefit my friend in the most direct way that was calling to me. I personally want to help his family. Two things happened: we reached a significant amount quickly, and our extended tour family pointed out a basic rule of the road: we take care of our own, even the ones we don't personally know. Taking this to heart, we are converting this fund to taking care of more than just Nick.
My role: I am in Los Angeles, CA. I started this because, after 24 hours, I noticed that no one else had, and I wanted to do something that felt productive and positive. I have already spoken with an entertainment attorney who many of you know, and we have already spoken to tax counsel about the best way to set up this fund. It's a weekend, so we will get more info on this as the week progresses.
If this isn't the right time for you to make a donation - please know we hear you, we understand.
Today or tonight raise a glass to the memory of Nick Alexander a guy doing a simple job of touring with a band and selling t-shirts going new places and making new friends. Last night, he ended his journey in a small theater in Paris along with many others who's lives were cut short by hate, by misguided religion, by ignorance.
Here is to you my friend may you and the others from this tragic event find peace...

From MGMT's fans:  We are all heartbroken over the loss of Nick.  He and his family along with the others who were at Le Bataclan on Friday are in our thoughts and prayers.  The French fans have always been among MGMT's biggest supporters and no doubt many of their long time fans were in attendance on Friday.  Their lives will be forever changed.  I can report that our dear Coralie was there and is safe.  I hope that others will post and let us know that they are alright. 

Many of us keep in touch, even during this "down time" while the boys are writing.  We were immediately in contact on Friday night.  Of course as soon as we heard "Bataclan," we thought of MGMT and their French fans.  Coralie let us know right away that she had escaped and was safe with her family. We were all brought together by our love of the music and everything for which MGMT stands.    Peace to all of you. --lala and the CKs

MGMT / Trailer for Land Of The Midnight Sun (Surf movie starring Andrew)
« on: October 28, 2015, 12:25:02 AM »
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MGMT / Record Store Day 11/27/15!!!
« on: October 01, 2015, 01:05:08 PM »
Hey MGMT fans and admirers of the band MGMT!
Yes, it has been a while since you've heard a peep from our "camp," but that's mostly 'cause we just don't really peep a lot when we're camping. Pack out what you pack in, you know? Everything is going and going pretty swell though, and we have some exciting news to share:
To commemorate the 10th anniversary of our first ever official release, Cantora Records will be re-releasing the 2005 MGMT Time To Pretend EP on glow-in-the-dark vinyl for Record Store Day, November 27th!!
That's right! All 6 tracks have been carefully and fancily re-mastered to further enhance and amplify the antiqued crevices of the post-collegiate bright-eyed doe-eyed golden glory that is the 2005 Time To Pretend EP. Hear early versions of some of your fave MegaMT songs:
"Time to pretend"? It's on there, obviously. "Kids"? You betcha. But also prepare for some fun and bizarre MGMT tracks that have never appeared on vinyl *AND MAYBE NEVER WILL.
here's a (mutated) tracklist:
1) Tome to Proton
2) Bogie Dawn
3) Destrickt
4) Uggs Alwiz Retain
5) Intel Rokkers
6) Keds
Please dig out a functioning record album player from your grandfather's garbage pile so you can play this EP!!! See where it takes you!
See where it will Be, here:
Goo pick up the Time To Pretend EP and lots of other goodies from other bands on Record Store Day, November 27!
*all 6 songs do appear to be on this vinyl release.
actual tracklist: 1) Time To Pretend 2) Boogie Down 3) Destrokk 4) Love Always Remains 5) Indie Rokkers 6) Kids


MGMT / Ben and Andrew involved in art installation soundtrack
« on: September 11, 2015, 08:56:17 PM »
Jennifer Herrema Enlists Kurt Vile, MGMT, Hot Chip, More For Installation Soundtrack

Artist duo Jonah Freeman and Justin Lowe asked Herrema, frontwoman of Black Bananas, to curate the immersive soundtrack

Jennifer Herrema, frontwoman of Black Bananas and formerly of Royal Trux, recently curated a group of artists for an immersive soundtrack to be used in artist duo Jonah Freeman and Justin Lowe's new installation at Red Bull Studios in New York-- an interactive installation called "Scenario in the Shade". The installation debuts September 12 and will run through December 6.
"Scenario in the Shade" features a series of rooms that visitors can wander through while enjoying a soundtrack provided by the different artists on Herrema's soundtrack, which features Devendra Banhart, Kurt Vile, Hot Chip's Alexis Taylor, Gang Gang Dance's Lizzi Bougatsos, Brian McKinley and Neil Hagerty (her partners from Royal Trux), RTX and the Black Bananas, MGMT's Benjamin Goldwasser and Andrew VanWyngarden, Primal Scream's Bobby Gillespie, OFF!'s Mario Rubalcaba, and others.
The installation was designed to give visitors a glimpse of the youth cultures of San San International, a fictional city that "sits somewhere between San Diego and San Juan".
According to the New York Times, the display includes everything from "a Moroccan-themed, sunken living room fit for a bachelor pad and a Victorian space complete with a player piano and shelves of jars filled with random books and magazine pages" to an exit through "a modified Port-a-Potty" that lands in "the San San International courtroom; it’s situated next to a deli/arcade/performance area" where Herrema and a few of the contributors will play. “The soundtrack is completely integral,” Herrema told the Times. “Basically it will guide through these scenarios that there will be multiple intentions. Because we can make a mix for every day of the week, and you would feel differently about the space.”

Jennifer of course sang backing vocals on Flash Delirium 

MGMT / Our birthday wishes for Will 2015
« on: July 21, 2015, 01:31:09 PM »
Will, I hope that you have an amazing day with people that you love.
Thanks for being such a sweetheart

MGMT / Andrew on Wesley Stace’s Cabinet of Wonders: The Podcast
« on: May 28, 2015, 02:39:11 AM »
Wesley Stace’s Cabinet of Wonders: The Podcast

If variety is the spice of life, April’s Cabinet of Wonders, the first podcast, is the spiciest yet.

In which the show must and does go on! Imagine, if you will, a world where Southside Johnny, the godfather of the New Jersey Sound, shares a bill with Andrew VanWyngarden, lead singer of MGMT: only in the Cabinet! Andrew sings the MGMT classic “I Love You Too, Death” along with covers of beautiful psych by Les Baroques and the Brazda Brothers, while Southside sings us “Hearts of Stone”, written of course by Bruce Springsteen. The meat in the Southside/MGMT sandwich was another great New Jersey poet, your ex-Poet Laureate, Robert Pinsky, with The English UK backing him on “Antique”. The assembled company then join for a celebratory, valedictory rendition of Kevin Ayer’s “Religious Experience.” (WARNING: contains excellent harmonica playing.)

MGMT / MGMT Laser shows at Carnegie Science Center
« on: May 12, 2015, 06:22:39 PM »
If you're in the Pittsburg area, you can check out the MGMT laser show at the Carnegie Science Center! 

This Grammy award-winning duo has played with world-class artists such as Radiohead, The Flaming Lips, Beck, and Paul McCartney. Now, Laser MGMT comes to the Buhl Planetarium dome in dazzling laser light. The show features a selection of songs from each of their albums and explores the depths of their imagery.

The shows are currently scheduled daily now through September 5

MGMT / Our birthday wishes for Matt 2015
« on: March 10, 2015, 12:55:53 PM »
Matt we love you so much!  This is totally my fault.  I've been really, really ill and I dropped the ball.  We all adore you and wish you the happiest birthday surrounded by all of the people who make you smile!!

MGMT / Our Birthday Wishes for Andrew, 2015
« on: January 25, 2015, 02:06:16 AM »
I can't attempt anything cute.  I am trying to avoid going to the hospital-but Andrew...I hope you have a wonderful day filled with more laughter and love than you can handle.  I want to say thank you for everything, but you're the word man.  Mine would be sorely inadequate when I'm at my very best.  So I won't try to be clever or cute, I just want to say thank you for making such beautiful music and reopening the world to me.  :-*  Happy birthday

Music / Shaky knees festival ATL
« on: January 14, 2015, 06:26:00 PM »
We're putting together a little forum group for this  8)

MGMT / Our Birthday Wishes for Ben, 2014
« on: December 11, 2014, 02:53:59 AM »

I hope you're having a smashing birthday Ben!  I wish that I could mix a delicious Mint Julep for you on your special day

Thanks for everything this's been exactly one year for me since my diagnoses, and the news today was not what I wanted to hear, but I'm so very grateful for the wonderful memories that you guys gave me-in a million years, I couldn't have dreamt it.  Cheers to you today, with love, lala

MGMT / Blikk Fang is finally happening! (Andrew and Kevin Barnes)
« on: October 29, 2014, 09:53:00 AM »
Wow so after a five yearish (I think) tease, this project is actually happening!!!

Polyvinyl Records will be including a 7” single from Blikk Fang (Andrew VanWyngarden & Kevin Barnes from of Montreal) as part of this year’s 4 Track Singles Series. This single will be pressed on colored vinyl, limited to 1,000 copies and only available to those who subscribe to the series. Get the full details at:

MGMT / Bazaar Teens featuring original prints by Andrew
« on: October 23, 2014, 01:52:04 PM »

The work is now for sale.  Check it out at the above link!

BAZAAR TEENS happened September 23rd 2104 for the 1st time When the teens hosted a two weeklong art show in a retail space in the east village of New York City font titled after one of the magazines featured in the teens’ collective memory of magazines, presented large-scale paintings and small-scale paintings on canvas on wood on other surfaces including walls and bricks and smaller works and photographs and paper closely related to the teens’ understanding of the war on terror and other terrors (9/11-ongoing). The BAZAAR TEEN projects insecurity with value, insecurity w/ seeing (selfies and glasses!), hand motions that project ambiguity and sounds that are also ambigious. BAZAAR TEENS was begun with the ISIS beheading of James Foley who in declarative sentences for example said All in All I Wish I Wasn’t America (but I am Amercia) and thinks about on internet anticapital affirmations about internet people (“Internet Are The Root Of All Evil”) and continues today with various other objects works thoughts and words assigned to different sections of BAZAAR TEENS dot COM where intelligible yet not reducible to a simplistic meaning is the Teens’ thoughts ’bout supernatural, theoretical and praxis—What Is a Girl?
The works are titled after the manner of the artist’s discretion and is inscribed on them in an index or show catalogue that was never actually made because the Teens are about talking and not doing, when it comes down to it. Because the Teens are aware that the people who accomplish what they set out to accomplish—have forethought, cunning and so on—are sociopathic. Having goals is sociopathic etc
The works referencing James Foley and the smaller works referencing Golfing Obama, golf, and Princess peach and Evanston IL. In a short video the teens set footage of Obama golfing over an image of Princess Peach weeping (Astraea, innocence also Persephone the teens are not well equipped in their allusive ambition ) and to the right on the screen driving footage of Evanston IL. IA Richards theory of metaphor literally applied. BAZAAR TEENS project was created “to interact with propaganda/value/meaning/politics” at the level of the “the internet mixed message,” where people say two or three things at the same time” this is irony, which the Teens like as well as jokes. The paintings in BAZAAR TEENS bear little paint. One is composed of holes by Andy Cahill. Carefully arranged. Another is a skewed flag. Another painting is actually a picture printed onto peg board. An out of focus pyramid scene into which pegs have been placed by Artist Daniel Kent on which have been hung various objects—a fly swatter, a DVD, a bottle cap—each item, in focus functioning slogan-like in a way that is at times decipherable, and at others obscured by the gestural abstraction of the entirety of the gestures, the show included.
Some words about the show are clearly decipherable yet unintelligible, such as Why is it the stuff parents say isnt make snse. The text is inscribed in white lettering with heavy weight accents over red bright paint on the top half of a postcard that served for a long time as the show text. The bottom half of the card featured the featured artists in the BAZAAR.
Elsewhere are puns that work visually but not aurally. For example, the viewer of BABY FED (food agent), will recognize “Duchamp” as the visual mother of “the half piece sculpture pegboard,” but then realize another aspect of the work the faux cracked glass of the Bachelor (because it is reprinted badly as a photographic picture) is doubled by the cracked glass of an iPhone screen on the obverse side which bears a critical text written by artist Mike Caputo who also has in the show a piece that references the piece being discussed. Hanging from the cracked glass side of the work are crunch candy bars, krackle candy bars. On the Duchamp side of the piece into which a peg has been inserted into the peg board hang pictures of the complete bride stripped bare by her bachelors piece hang Gerber Baby Spoons, literally spoon feeding the viewer The Art History Joke. A richard prince print hangs opposite this work, beneath a picture of richard prince taken by a fan at a richard prince book signing. The picture isn’t particularly well photographed. Prince is centered in the frame. The image is watermarked with a line of copyright, black text, which sits beneath Prince’s pocked and bulbous schnoz defaces prince’s face a la LHOOQ These visual puns, not present in the title, are not clearly legible within the works either; on the contrary, they belong to where the overall effect is closer to gestural abstraction, as is the case with the two other phtoographs in the show, the Heads placed on Teen stars bodies, photoshopped decapitations.
The same variations can be observed in the performance video, the decapitated child’s vanity, with INDIGNATION veering toward almost total abstraction A Blonde Girl in Leather Jumper Putting Sticks On Hot Dogs,
The teens state that the “primary interest is the visual aspect of language as performance of value, intention and desire to be other, and that this is vanity and ego.” Here the head is lost, the mabrles are lost and sunk in head.  traces of the body’s action on losing its head losing its language losing its ability to use  language in present in the physical act of speaking to Speak Oneself Out of Danger, the failure to communicate meaningfully what one means before one days ALL IN ALL I WISH I WASNT AMERICAN
Who dropped those bombs that killed all those people John? The works blur the already ambiguous and absurd ISIS message, the humor present in the words often deformed by pictorial gestures. Additional objects such as Teddy Ruxpin displayed on specifically designed plastic buckets made to interfere with the stairs and disrupt the visitors’ sense of nostalgia. The head of the ISIS cow hangs above the stairs above a fake brick wall, labels are nowhere to be found. This is the mischievous way of conflating commodity, language, nation and abstract expressionism into one container.

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