Spider Bags frontman Dan McGee writes: “On a bright clear day sometime in the near or distant future, Quetzalcoatl will come to Earth. Upon arrival, he will scorch a tract of barren land and draw a line in the ash with his terrible talon. On one side of the line he will place Merge; on the other, everything else. Those on the Merge side will then take hold of the mighty winged serpent’s scales and fly with him to live among the stars. They will know all the color and magic of existence, happy and free forever. Those on the other side? Well… we’re glad we’re with Merge.” More >
Merge Records continues its 25th anniversary celebration this summer by teaming up with Duke Performances for their popular Music in the Gardens series. Taking place throughout the months of June and July, the series invites local bands and musicians in the national spotlight to play at various venues on the Duke University campus. This year, they have extended that reach to include artists on neighboring Durham-based label Merge Records.
Among the Merge artists slated to appear at Duke’s Baldwin Auditorium are Lambchop—performing their iconic album Nixon front to back—in addition to William Tyler, Mount Moriah, Stephin Merritt, and Mark Eitzel. The historic venue has recently reopened after a two-year renovation and will serve as the perfect backdrop for these special shows. For family-friendly outdoor concerts, join Merge artists King Khan & the Shrines, the newly signed Spider Bags, The Rosebuds, Richard Buckner, and Portastatic for the Music in the Gardens series. These shows will take place in the beautiful Sarah P. Duke Gardens. Lawn chairs, blankets, and picnics are encouraged for these performances, and food and beverages will also be available for purchase.More >
Director Danny Perez on the video:
"Inspired by Tom Rubnitz and the mania of children's-show programming, I wanted to use John's elastic performance in a psychedelic location. Using the colors and geometry of the set, the video is cut rapidly to the fast-paced song to create a dizzying and optical experience."
John Schmersal adds, "Danny is probably the only person I know who could make being confined in a straitjacket for several hours a liberating experience." More >
Also, the May installment of our ongoing 25th Anniversary reissue series is The Clientele's Suburban Light.
Find a full list of The Clientele's tour dates below, and pre-order the Suburban Light reissue now on CD or LP now in the Merge store. More >
Chief songwriter M.C. Taylor's official statement on today's news:
I've been buying Merge records for about half of my time on Earth, so I am very stoked and deeply gratified to be joining their esteemed ranks. I hear the steak tartare in the Merge Cantina is wonderful, and I look forward to trading in all of my cash for company scrip, known as Mergebucks (which is not yet legal tender but should be soon, they assure me). Onwards! More >
Today, Stereogum also premiered a video for track “The Tower” off of the upcoming record. Watch the video now. More >
The Independent Weekly premiered the news with a stream of "Bitter Boy" to listen and share below. The limited-edition "Bitter Boy" b/w "Kennel Cough" and "Let Me Be Clear" 7-inch is available for pre-order now in the Merge store.
Tickets for the individual Merge 25 shows at the Cat's Cradle & the outdoor party in Carrboro are going on sale tomorrow — Wednesday, March 26 at 11am EST — via the Cat's Cradle website.
Limit of 2 tickets per customer to each Cradle show and 4 tickets per customer for Saturday's outdoor party. Children under 10 get in free to the outdoor party when accompanied by an adult ticket holder.
Full show line-ups & more information about other Merge 25 Festivities coming soon! More >
Record Store Day is a yearly celebration in which independently owned record stores come together with artists to celebrate the art of music. Special vinyl and CD releases and various promotional products are made exclusively for the day, and hundreds of artists in the United States and in various countries across the globe make special appearances and performances.
For more information on Record Store Day and where you can find a store near you, visit recordstoreday.com.
Watch the video for "Hot and Cold" now at Pitchfork More >
[These shows] will be acoustic affairs in private homes. Find your town and get a zip code. Purchase a ticket or two and get the whole address. Audiences are more or less 50 strong. They start at 8PM. I just show up with an acoustic guitar, find a chair and thumb-strum into thin air.
But first: March 18th, Merge Records is releasing a 20th anniversary edition of my first album, BLOOMED. There's a bonus disc included with studio, radio and live band performances. Vinyl even! I'll also have some with me at the shows.
A list of tour dates & the full track list of the Bloomed reissue + bonus disc are below. More >
When we first started coming to Europe (our first European tour was with Mudhoney in April 1992), we were lucky to have Christof and his fine label City Slang on our side. City Slang released all the records between No Pocky For Kitty and Indoor Living and supported our sometimes successful, sometimes sucky European touring efforts throughout the roaring mid '90s. Those albums have been out of print in Europe for quite a while, and we are excited to say that Merge will be making the following titles available there on CD and LP as of March 17th:
No Pocky for Kitty
On the Mouth
Here's Where the Strings Come In
Indoor Living More >
Prior to that, Bob will wrap up the intimate 25 Years of Workbook mini-tour with a March 6 return to The Late Show with David Letterman and two final sold out shows March 7 and 8 at New York's City Winery, both featuring Jason Narducy on bass and cellist Alison Chesley. More >
Released as a double-disc and one-LP/one-CD set, this new edition of Suburban Light features the album in its original European tracklisting, restored from original analog tapes to sound warmer and a bit less like a batch of demos. The bonus material includes a revelatory set of covers, rehearsals, B-sides, and three unreleased tunes.
Watch a performance of "An Hour Before the Light" circa 1996 below and pre-order Suburban Light on CD or LP now in the Merge store.
KEXP presents Merge Records 25th Anniversary Celebration
Friday, March 14th at Mellow Johnny's (400 Nueces St.)
12:00 PM - Wye Oak
2:00 PM - Vertical Scratchers
4:00 PM - Mac McCaughan
6:00 PM - Ex Hex More >
Listen to Daughter of Everything in full and see the beautiful artwork now at Pitchfork Advance. More >