"Early on, we had a whole batch of songs that were based on this New Orleans-style horn playing that (guitarist) Paul (Maroon) was working on," singer Hamilton Leithauser says. "But 'Stranded' is the only one that actually ended up making the album. I think it was maybe the second song we wrote for Lisbon, so it sort of exemplifies our sound from maybe two years ago. I guess it sounds more like our last record, You & Me, than a lot of the other songs on Lisbon.
The horn section included my wife, Anna, our lead trumpeter Paul Brandenberg, and a ratty assortment of the other guys we usually tour with — mostly trumpets and maybe two trombones. We had them all into Gigantic Studios, and I sang the whole thing live right there with them and the band. It's always fun doing a big production like that. Paul also added a bunch of his own trumpets down in Philly to give it that wobbly style, and maybe just to make sure it was completely out of tune. (Keyboardist) Walt (Martin) and I did the words together.
"We took two trips to Lisbon over the course of writing this record," Leithauser adds. "None of us had ever been there, and we were really blown away by the place. The topography and architecture are stunningly handsome. Even when we were there for the rainy season — it literally never stopped raining — it was a trip that outshone a lot of others. We've never had much luck at all in Europe, and the Portuguese were surprisingly accommodating. I think those two trips really helped keep us motivated while making this record. We named the record Lisbon as sort of a 'thank you' and a small tribute."
July 30 - Frisco ,TX - Lochrann's
July 31 - Little Rock, AR - Juanita's Cantina Ballroom
August 05 - Austin, TX - The Mohawk
August 06 - Houston ,TX - Walter's On Washington
August 07 - New Orleans, LA - One Eyed Jacks
August 09 - Birmingham, AL - Bottletree
August 10 - Atlanta, GA - The Earl
August 11 - Carrboro, NC - Cat's Cradle
August 12 - Washington, DC - DC9
August 14 - New York, NY - The Mercury Lounge
August 15 - New York, NY - The Mercury Lounge
August 18 - Cleveland Heights, OH - Grog Shop
August 19 - Grand Rapids, MI - The Intersection
August 20 - Chicago, IL - The Empty Bottle
August 21 - St. Louis, MO - The Old Rock House
This summer and fall The Walkmen will embark on a nationwide tour in support of Lisbon, their highly anticipated debut for Fat Possum Records, due September 14. Lisbon follows 2008’s You & Me, which landed on numerous year-end “best of” lists including NPR, Pitchfork, Stereogum, Time Out NYC, and many others. You & Me received five stars from The Guardian who described the album as “intimate, intense and beautiful,” while Pitchfork called it “the sound they’ve reached for since the beginning.” The tour will include stops in New York, Los Angeles, Lawrence and Philadelphia. See reverse for a complete list of dates.
Lisbon was recorded over a two-year period in warehouses on Girard Ave in Philadelphia, and on the Gowanus Canal in Brooklyn. A few songs that helped establish the record’s tone were written during several inspiring and successful trips to Lisbon, Portugal.
The 11 songs on Lisbon were carved out of 29 songs that the band recorded over the course of ten months beginning in August 2009. You & Me engineer Chris Zane (Passion Pit, Les Savy Fav, Tokyo Police Club) worked with the band from August to February, and then in March of 2010 the band traveled to south Dallas to finish the album with John Congleton (St. Vincent, Explosions in the Sky).
Featuring the band’s signature vintage instrument-sound, Lisbon brings a raw, fiery rock ‘n’ roll spirit to the complexities of the You & Me songwriting. Lisbon will showcase “a bunch of fast rockers and big bashers, and a couple great oddballs” says front man Hamilton Leithauser.
The Walkmen broke through in 2002 with their debut album Everyone Who Pretended to Like Me is Gone. 2004’s Bows & Arrows featured indie rock anthem “The Rat” which Pitchfork recently named the #20 song of the decade. In 2006 the band recorded a
song-by-song cover of Harry Nilsson and John Lennon’s 1974 classic Pussy Cats as a farewell to their Harlem studio space Marcata. The Walkmen grew up playing together in various bands since the fifth grade including New York’s Jonathan Fire*Eater and Boston’s The Recoys.
Sonny and the Sunsets have signed to Fat Possum, see what Pitchfork had to say.
Sonny and the Sunset's vintage-style west coast pop songs tell sordid tales of death, drowning, outcasts, heavenly visions and otherworldly despair. Their newest LP, Tomorrow is Alright radiates with a classic yet indefinable sound, almost like a futuristic 50's R&B.
California native Sonny Smith started his career playing in a blues piano bar nestled in the mountain towns of Colorado at the age of eighteen. He then embarked on a journey to Central America, where he lived on an organic farm in the Central American jungle, earning money while touring with a rag tag busking band and playing hotels and cabanas along the coast of the Caribbean. In 1996, he moved back home to San Francisco, where he continued to focus on writing music, short stories and plays. In the early 2000's he toured in support of Neko Case and Jolie Holland and released a string of solo albums titled, This is My Story, This is My Song, Sordid Tales of Love and Woe, One Act Plays and Fruitvale. Tomorrow is Alright continues his exploration of outcasts, weirdos, freaks, death, love and atypical transformation.
In 2007, he formed Sonny and The Sunsets with help from friends Shayde Sartin & Tim Cohen (of the Fresh & Onlys), Tahlia Harbour (of Citay and The Dry Spells), Ryan Browne and Kelley Stoltz (Sub Pop Recordings) among others. Together the band created Tomorrow is Alright, recorded on a classic 1970's 388 Tascam tape recorder in various uncommon places including out of Sonny's camper. Tomorrow is Alright is full of straightforward-pop songs that recall the 1950's era doo wop of The Falcons combined with the direct sincerity and positive spirit of Modern Lovers' Jonathan Richman as well as the dark confessional humor of cartoonists like Robert Crumb and Ivan Brunetti.
Sonny Smith currently resides in the Sunset District of San Francisco where he stays busy writing music and providing occasional care to disabled war veterans and other people who have fallen through the cracks of society through a Bay Area based social work agency F & CMS. He works out of an office in the back of his friends' surf shop. In addition to his work as a sometimes columnist or occasional playwright he also opened "100 Records" his first ever solo- art exhibition. The show ran for seven weeks at Gallery 16 in San Francisco; it featured 100 album-covers created by 90 different artists from around the world along with one hundred songs written and recorded by Sonny himself and a custom built jukebox to play those songs. The show then traveled to Austin and New York.
This June Sonny and The Sunsets plan to pack into Sonny's camper and head out on U.S. Tour, where they'll play Pitchfork Music Festival in Chicago this July. Their debut LP, Tomorrow is Alright, is currently available on vinyl from Soft Abuse Records, and will be released on CD and digitally via Fat Possum Records on Aug. 31.
SONNY AND THE SUNSETS
^ = w/ Ty Segall
% = w/ Grass Widow
# = w/ Royal Baths
Lisbon, the fifth album by critically acclaimed band The Walkmen is due September 14. The band's label debut for Fat Possum Records, Lisbon follows 2008's You & Me, which landed on numerous year-end "best of" lists including NPR, Pitchfork, Stereogum, Time Out NYC, and many others. You & Me received five stars from The Gaurdian who described the album as "intimate intense and beautiful," while Pitchfork called it "the sound they've reached for since the beginning."
Lisbon was recorded over a two year period in warehouses on Girard Ave, in Philadelphia, and on the Gowanus Canal in Brooklyn. A few songs that helped establish the record's tone were written during several inspiring and successful trips to Lisbon, Portugal.
The 11 songs on Lisbon were carved out of 29 songs that the band recorded over the course of ten months beginning in August 2009. You & Me engineer Chris Zane (Passion Pit, Les Savy Fav, Tokyo Police Club) worked with the and from August to February, then in March of 2010 the band traveled to sout Dallas to finish the album with producer John Congleston (St. Vincent, Explosions in the Sky).
Featuring the band's signature vintage instrument-sound, Lisbon brings a raw, fiery rock 'n' roll spirit to the complexities of the You & Me songwriting. Lisbon will showcase "a bunch of fast rockers and big bashers, and a couple great oddballs" says front man Hamilton Leithauser.
The Walkmen broke through in 2002 with their debut album Everyone Who Pretended To Like Me is Gone. 2004's Bows & Arrows featured indie rock anthem "The Rat" which Pitchfork recently named the #20 song of the decade. In 2006 the band recorded a song-by-song cover of Harry Nilsson and John Lennon's 1974 classic Pussy Cats as a farewell to their Harlem studio space Marcata. The Walkmen grew up playing together in various bands since the fifth grade including New York's Jonathan Fire*Eater and Boston's The Recoys.
07/02 – Harriet Island, MN @ Taste of MN
07/04 – Des Moines, IA @ 80/35
07/17 – Philadelphia, PA @ XPoNential Music Festival
07/31 – Montreal, QC @ Osheaga Festival
08/06 – Chicago, IL @ Lollapalooza
08/12 – New York, NY @ Governors Island #
08/25 – London, UK @ Islington Academy
08/27 – Leeds, UK @ Leeds Festival
08/28 – Reading, UK @ Reading Festival
09/09 – Vancouver, BC @ Malkin Bowl %
09/10 – Vancouver, BC @ Malkin Bowl %
09/12 – Portland, OR @ Musicfest NW
10/28 – Glasgow, UK @ O2 Academy *
10/30 – Newcastle, UK @ O2 Academy *
10/31 – Leeds, UK @ O2 Academy *
11/02 – London, UK @ O2 Academy *
11/04 – Nottingham, UK @ Rock City *
11/06 – Liverpool, UK @ O2 Academy *
11/07 – Bournemouth, UK @ O2 Academy *
# = w/ Grizzly Bear
% = w/ The National
* = w/ The Black Keys