The name Forget Cassettes may not be as meaningful for those not familiar with the Nashville indie rock scene of the mid-aughts, but if you are one of those unfamiliar, you’d be doing yourself a favor to change that. I was a big fan of most of the Nashville bands on the Theory 8 Records roster back in those days, and Forget Cassettes was one of them. Their debut Instruments of Action from 2003 is still a fave of mine. In 2006 Salt featured a new 3-piece lineup and was also a fantastic record. Beth Cameron, the force behind FC, started work on this new album roughly 3 years ago, if memory serves. There were plans to release it under a couple of different names but ultimately she has come full-circle and arrived back at Forget Cassettes. I know she’s put countless hours and poured her heart and soul into this album, as is the case with everything she does, so I really look forward to hearing it.

The album as a whole won’t be officially released until January 2013, but leading up to it are three digital-only EPs consisting of songs from the album. Full details can be seen at her new website. Welcome back, Beth!

As I’ve said before, I’m often skeptical of “blog buzz” bands that get over-hyped and often fall far short of the expectations bestowed upon them. But sometimes my tastes and interest phases perfectly with one of those bands. Last year the best example of that was The Pains of Being Pure at Heart. Phenomenal band, amazing record, good live, etc… and they completely deserved all the media love. I honestly think they’ll be back on the radar soon with a new album that’s every bit as good as their debut. This year I’m joining the chorus of bloggers who are hyping Floridians Surfer Blood. I recently picked up their debut Astro Coast and loved almost every minute of it. It’s filled with some fine guitar work backed by great songwriting. It’s well-produced and I highly recommend not only getting the album, but also coming to see them this Saturday night at The End, along with Turbo Fruits, CY, and Holiday Shores. If you don’t feel like paying and/or staying up late, you can also catch them at an in-store at Grimey’s earlier in the day. But I’d get there early because this one will probably fill up fast. I’ll be at the End photographing, and possibly at the Grimey’s show too. For a much more adroit write-up, read Matt Sullivan’s Critic’s Pick for the Scene. He’s, you know, a real writer.

Some other goodness happening this weekend:

Local Honey overstock sale tonight 6-9pm. Come snatch up some new threads as Shea gets rid of some overstock to make room for new spring stuff. There will also be free spiked punch.

Also tonight- Hammertorch, Heartbeater, and the Gills at the 5 Spot.

Saturday- If Surfer Blood isn’t your thing, and beards are, then check out the official FINAL Whiskerino throwdown at Mercy Lounge. I really wish this hadn’t clashed with Surfer Blood, because this will be a sight to behold. Playing: Codaphonic, Roy Ira, and Kidstatic.

I should also mention that Monday is the 1st installment of Mercy Lounge’s Road to Bonnarroo series. This one features Born Empty, Mona, Ponderosa, Moon Taxi, The Private, The Non-Commissioned Officers, Kyle Andrews, and Parachute Musical. The competition is fierce!

A couple of newsy tidbits:

This is old news now, but worth a mention nonetheless: My So-Called Band officially launched their website… on Angelfire. Complete with animated GIFs, auto-play MIDI version of “Dreams” by the Cranberries, and hit counter.

Makeup & Vanity Set started a Facebook fan page. Become a fan if you love him. If you don’t, then you should. Oh, and he has a new record coming out in March. Look for an interview with him to be posted here soon.

Caitlin Rose got a nice blurb in Grazia Daily in the UK. Check it out at Aaron Hartley’s tumblr.

Have a great weekend!

Credit: John Behm via Private Dancer's myspace

Last friday night at the 5 Spot was the first Apollo Up! show in many years, and I showed up ready for some serious mid-aughts nostalgia. My enthusiasm was somewhat stifled by the first band which had a name too long to remember and sounded like Warped Tour circa 1999. Thank goodness Minneapolis’ Private Dancer was up next. As I enthusiastically told the band after their show, it’s been a LONG-ASS time since I’ve seen a band that I knew nothing about and was totally amazed. Try as I might, I find it very hard to describe exactly why I liked them so much… I just did. It’s true, their overall sound is pretty similar to a lot of garage-y 60’s and 70’s revivalists currently flooding the market, but something about them just really clicked with me. I strongly suggest checking them out. No, seriously… CHECK THESE GUYS OUT. To whet your appetite, here’s She’s A Company Man from their debut album Trouble Eyes.

Private Dancer-She’s A Company Man

Of course, Apollo Up! was awesome and Jay Leo Phillips’ guitar tone peeled my scalp as always. For a better review of the show, check out the Cream.

Some sad news came from Stereogum and Pitchfork today. Flight of the Conchords is officially dead. There will be no 3rd season. I’m quite sure we haven’t seen the last of Jemaine and Brett, however, and I look forward to seeing what they do next.

Lilith Fair is making a comeback next year and the lineup is rather interesting. It includes a few names that seem a little out-of-place at first glance: the Submarines, Metric, Janell Monae, Chairlift and Ke$ha…. yes, Ke$ha- the Nashville-L.A. transplant who has our own Justin Kase as her DJ. (Via Music Photographers forum)