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First, I must point you to the official Next BIG Nashville schedule. It’s up, and it will probably change, but it’s there so start planning which sacrifices to make. Planning your schedule at these types of music festivals is always a delicate balance between seeing people you know and like, and branching out to see some new acts you might not get to see otherwise.

Secondly, I have some exciting news that some people know about, but others don’t. I will be doing a photo documentary project with Those Darlins next week; joining them on a week-long leg of their tour with Strange Boys and Gentleman Jesse & His Men. I got the idea after the death of famous rock photographer Jim Marshall last year. News of his death got me thinking about his photographs, and how a lot of the truly iconic shots are very casual, candid, off-beat images taken off the stage. I thought about how I could do more of that type of behind-the-scenes work (not that my images will ever be as iconic as Marshall’s shots of Bob Dylan, Janis Joplin, and the like), and I thought of Those Darlins. I’ve known them for years, they’re some of the best people I know, they have room in their van, and after some discussions with their awesome manager John “JT” Turner, this idea is now becoming a reality. They’re what most would consider a mid-level act, but they’re headed for higher places and I think it’s the right time to do this type of project with a band like them. Those Darlins know how to party, and I think the results of this little experiment will be interesting. So, if you’re in Chapel Hill, D.C., New York, Cambridge, or Brooklyn, I hope to see you at one of the shows! Obviously, I may not be posting much next week…

My other news is simply that Miami Horror is awesome and you should go buy their album now. Seriously, I’ve been seeing mp3’s from these guys popping up in the blogosphere for a few months and I kept thinking “oh, this is an awesome track… nice…” But just yesterday I saw my friend Joseph’s review of their debut album on his blog Nashville Nights and it finally clicked in my head that these guys were different than your average “3 or 4 singles a year” DJs/producers. I urge you to checkout the quality interview Joseph did with them as well… I totally agree with his sentiment that it’s hard to find a good, quality dance floor album these days. There really are no sleepers or filler on this album- pure quality all the way through. Honestly this material is exactly what I personally want out of electronic/dance music: it’s got a great disco-ey, funky groove to it, smooth bass lines, and most of all the songs are songs, not just a bunch of loops layered together that build and fade (via trancewave). If you like Cut Copy, AIR, or Neon Indian, you will love this record. This is the best thing to come out of Australia since Silverchair. J/K J/K J/K

Miami Horror-I Look To You (Ft. Kimbra)

Oh, and the link to buy the album goes to Amazon. Fuck iTunes and their non-mp3/non-DJable formats. And while I’m at it, fuck their new ugly skin/layout for iTunes 10, too.

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The new She & Him video for the song “In the Sun” is very predictable and run-of-the-mill… not that music videos always have to blow one’s mind, but still… I guess it’s in the record contract that Zooey Deschanel-Gibbard has to dance and skip around blissfully while doing cute grins and eye-winks. Whatevs. Go watch it at Stereogum. Then come back here and watch this Jetpack (now known as the Nobility) video that the She & Him video reminded me of. Some serious Nashville rock nostalgia in there… including yours truly, sans-glasses in the green tshirt and goatee, right behind Sean Williams. I do believe this video (for the song “Mathematics” off their Art of Building a Moat EP) was filmed in May of 2005 in a Lipscomb classroom, if memory serves. This is is an alternate version that translates much better through the pixelation of YouTube. The final version had a bunch of rotoscoping effects that probably looked great in full-quality, but came out pretty nasty through YouTube. Directed and edited by Chad Denning of Gamma Blast.

Those Darlins are heading down under in May to tour with Wagons. They’re apparently also releasing a split EP with them as well. To my knowledge, this is the first time our ladies have left North America to play shows. They may have hopped over to the UK at some point and I just missed it… but frankly I don’t have the time or energy to look that up right now. (Via Spunk)

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