Yeah and yeah.
Minimal updates have been made due to much work and much stress. Severely lame I realize, but whadya gonna do. Most of my rockage information comes second hand from other folkz blogs these days.
Morecowbell has a post from January 17th with two MP3s off of Idewild's upcoming (I think March) Warnings/Promises. Idewild was quite the 'it' band back in 2000, as their 100 Broken Windows record kicked (and still kicks) much ass, sounding like R.E.M.'s Murmur on a steroid/amphetamine cocktail. They slumped a bit on 2002's overly glossy The Remote Part, but I'm still looking forward to the new record. Excellent live show. Of the two tracks posted, "Welcome Home" is especially nice and folky, wheras "I Want a Warning" has jagged edges, but is a touch dull.
Sleater-Kinney at the Mercury Lounge in early March is now onsale, but if you care anything about incredible rock and roll, you already knew that. I'll be there on the 2nd (three or four feet from stage left, of course). Their new album is supposedly called The Woods (a reference to the remote upstate NY place where they recorded it perhaps?) and will feature 10 tracks. Thanks to OneLouder for the info.
Of course one of the many completely great things about owning an iPod is that the shuffle feature, when it isn't "shuffling" the same 7 or 8 songs back and forth, allows for some serious back catalog listening. Just yesterday I was on the L train, and exposed to R.E.M.'s "Binky the Doormat," a deep track from their underrated (and very wierd) New Adventures in Hi-Fi album. Maybe the creepiest R.E.M. track ever, and I hadn't listened to it in at least 6 months or so. Especially the part at the bridge where Stipe goes..."WRRROOOOWW!" That album has a ton of great R.E.M. songs that nobody outside of their hardcore fanbase knows exist...."Low Desert," "Leave," "New Test Leper," etc. Probably the last R.E.M. disc I don't have a significant beef with.