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A blog for Seattle music lovers of all stripes, from hip-hop and indie rock to jazz and world music.

Topic: Sub Pop

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July 30, 2014 at 5:09 PM

Shabazz Palaces pushes boundaries again| New recordings

Shabazz Palaces, ‘Lese Majesty’ (Sub Pop) “Focus” is the first word uttered on Shabazz Palaces’ second full-length, “Lese Majesty,” an expectedly dense and boundary-pushing follow-up to its 2011 future-rap opus “Black Up.” It’s a fitting word for a record in which everything demands a closer listen or further consideration, from its lyrics to its track names…


Comments | More in Electronic, R & B/Hip-hop | Topics: Lese Majesty, New Recordings, Shabazz Palaces

July 22, 2014 at 9:17 AM

Sub Pop releasing Sarah Silverman’s new album on vinyl, CD and digital download

Sub Pop will be releasing Sarah Silverman’s new comedy album, “We Are Miracles,” on September 23. The LP will be available on limited-edition colored vinyl, CD and digital formats. The special was recorded at Largo in Los Angeles and features material from Silverman’s Emmy-nominated headline special for HBO. Sub Pop has also released comedy albums by David Cross, Eugene Mirman and  Patton Oswalt.

Warning swear words:


Comments | More in Comedy | Topics: Comedy, Sarah Silverman, Sub Pop

July 2, 2014 at 4:04 PM

Sub Pop launches internet radio station

By Katharine Schwab / Seattle Times staff writer

Sub Pop, the Seattle-based indie record label known for popularizing grunge music in the ’90s, is jumping on board the streaming radio trend with its own radio station on TuneIn, which hosts more than 100,000 radio stations and caters to more than 50 million monthly active users.


Comments | More in General news, Rock/Pop | Topics: SoundCloud, Sub Pop, TuneIn

May 22, 2014 at 5:00 AM

Seaweed, the pride of Tacoma, resurfaces | Concert preview


Seaweed, from left: Clint Werner, Aaron Stauffer, Jesse Fox, Owen Atkins, Wade Neal. Photo by J.H. Wortley.

Tacoma’s lone entry in the next-Nirvana sweepstakes, Seaweed were never the center of attention — but were always nearby, like Waldo if he traded his stripes for flannel.

From 1989 to ‘99, the quintet, headlining Vera Thursday, recorded five LPs — three for Seattle’s Sub Pop, one for North Carolina’s Merge, and one for the Disney-owned Hollywood Records.

They appeared on the soundtrack to the slacker classic “Clerks,” in the grunge documentary “Hype!” and even had a video, “Kid Candy,” below, critiqued by Beavis and Butt-head.

Touring 23 times, they logged over a thousand shows — from small club gigs with peers Superchunk and Quicksand to big-ticket fests with Green Day and Candlebox.

Those golden days are gone — but in meeting bassist Owen Atkins and guitarist Wade Neal for after-work pints in T-Town’s no-frills Hilltop district, it’s clear Seaweed remain local heroes.


Comments | More in Rock/Pop | Topics: Sub Pop, Tacoma, The Vera Project

May 16, 2014 at 11:00 AM

Unwinding with Survival Knife | Concert preview

Survival Knife

Survival Knife, from left: Meg and Kris Cunningham, Justin Trosper, Brandt Sandeno. Photo by Sarah Cass.

If you’re from Olympia — a place where you can throw a rock and hit a punk — it’s tough to have much of an ego about your band.

And over dinner and drinks at downtown Oly’s hippie-Mexican dive Quality Burrito, a few weeks before their Barboza show this Saturday, Survival Knife singer-guitarist Justin Trosper, guitarist Brandt Sandeno and bassist Meg Cunningham — whose drummer husband Kris completes the lineup — present themselves as ordinary friends making music together.

But that’s not entirely true. Not every group has an icon — albeit a reluctant one like Trosper, former frontman for Unwound — in its midst.


Comments | More in Rock/Pop | Topics: Barboza, Olympia, Sub Pop

April 29, 2014 at 12:00 PM

The scattered sounds of Chad VanGaalen | New recordings

Chad VanGaalenChad VanGaalen, ‘Shrink Dust’ (Sub Pop)

Chad VanGaalen lives an artist’s dream.

Thanks to grants from the Canadian government — coupled with a Sub Pop distribution deal — the singer, songwriter, animator and producer has issued new records and video clips with minimal interference since 2005.

But with such freedom one shoulders the burden of oversight alone.

His latest offering, “Shrink Dust,” out Tuesday, is a self-described country album, leading one to wonder what exactly the Calgary native considers country — or how potent the psychedelics are north of the border.


Comments | More in Folk, Rock/Pop | Topics: Canada, New Recordings, Sub Pop

April 15, 2014 at 10:00 AM

The Afghan Whigs step back into the light | Concert preview

The Afghan Whigs

The Afghan Whigs perform live Tuesday at Seattle’s Showbox club. Photo by Piper Ferguson.

When The Times last spoke with Greg Dulli two years ago, The Afghan Whigs main man teased about the possibility of new material from his revitalized band.

“If there’s something to say later,” he’d said, “I’m sure we’ll say it.”

There was — and they have.

“Do to the Beast,” their first LP since 1998, hits stores Tuesday — with a celebratory Showbox gig that night.


Comments | More in Rock/Pop | Topics: Ohio, Showbox, Sub Pop

April 14, 2014 at 9:00 AM

Get your Goat | Concert preview


New Sub Pop signees Goat, from Sweden, perform live in Seattle Monday. Photo courtesy of the band.

Among music nerds, it’s a fun exercise: play some friends an ahead-of-its-time record — like Can’s 1971 Krautrock landmark “Tago Mago” or Big Star’s 1972 power-pop blueprint “#1 Record” — and ask what year they think it’s from.

Goat’s “World Music” inverts this game.

Made in 2013 — but sounding pre-digital era — it’s a dizzying amalgam of hypnotic rhythms, childlike vocals, bongos, organ and wah, drawing upon everything from progressive rock to Indian raga and West African guitar music.

The Swedish group inked a Stateside distribution deal with Seattle’s Sub Pop label last month; they’re in town Monday, headlining Neumos.

Enigmatic types to say the least, Goat doesn’t divulge involved parties’ names — but an anonymous member, speaking on the band’s behalf, answered a handful of questions via email.


Comments | More in Rock/Pop, World | Topics: psychedelic, Sub Pop, Sweden

April 8, 2014 at 5:42 PM

Finally, a Mudhoney biography | Book review

“Mudhoney: The Sound and The Fury From Seattle”

Keith Cameron

Voyageur Press, $19.99


Keith Cameron's book is the first full biography of Mudhoney.

Keith Cameron’s book is the first full biography of Mudhoney.

Green River was Seattle’s seminal grunge band of the 1980s. Kim Neely’s 1998 book “Five Against One: The Pearl Jam Story” documented what happened to one half of the group after Green River split in 1987. Now there’s finally a book detailing the events that followed for the other band members, who went on to form Mudhoney.

Keith Cameron, a writer for prestigious UK monthly “Mojo,” was a young aspiring journalist when Mudhoney first toured England in 1989, and, having covered the band from the very beginning, is well-placed to take the reader through the labyrinthine twists and turns of the burgeoning grunge era.


Comments | More in Rock/Pop | Topics: Book review, Mudhoney, Sub Pop

February 4, 2014 at 1:45 PM

The intimate sounds of Rebecca Gates | Concert preview

Rebecca Gates

Portland singer-songwriter-guitarist Rebecca Gates plays Seattle’s Crocodile Back Bar Wednesday. Photo by Matt Kim.

Not many artists are equally comfortable sharing bills with punk rock icons and alt-country troubadours, but Rebecca Gates has done both in Seattle before.

In 1993, her group, The Spinanes, opened for Washington, D.C.’s seminal Fugazi at the Bellevue YMCA. Two years ago, she performed solo on a much larger stage, supporting Los Angeles-based singer-songwriter Ryan Adams at Benaroya Hall.

This Wednesday, the Portlander returns to cozier environs, co-headlining The Crocodile Back Bar with local musician Chris Brokaw, formerly of ‘90s cult acts Come and Codeine.


Comments | More in Americana, Rock/Pop | Topics: Portland, Sub Pop, The Crocodile

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