The Black Angels:
Not since David Bowie has a musician (or in this case, a group of musicians) been so influenced by the work of the Velvet Underground than Austin psych band, The Black Angels. While the band's name and logo are direct homages to the pioneering experimental rock band, The Black Angels are blazing their own musical trail with incredible tour dates and driving albums like their latest, Phosphene Dream. The album's success has led to 2011 tour dates at some of the world's biggest music festivals; a far cry from the Texas bars they used to play in.
The Black Angels was born in the diverse musical scene of Austin, Texas circa 2004. Bonded by a mutual love of Nico and the Velvet Underground, The Black Angels began posting music on their MySpace page and contributed to the compilation album, Psychedelica Vol. 1. Tour dates at SXSW and Austin City Limits followed the successful release of their debut album, Passover, as did supporting performances for influences The Black Keys and Black Rebel Motorcycle Club. The Black Angels' follow-up, Directions to See a Ghost, became acclaimed from critics at Rolling Stone, Blender, The Times, and other reputable periodicals.
The Black Angels' latest album, Phosphene Dream, features a more streamlined sound that has also been well received by critics and audiences. The album has allowed for numerous tour dates in 2011, including performances at Fuji Rock, Festival Woodstower, the Electric Picnic Festival, and the Saint Nolff Festival, just to name a few. The Black Angels' final performance for the year is on September 13, so be sure to buy your tickets for their 2011 tour dates soon.
The Atlanta punk band, the Black Lips, are tearing mainstream music a new @!# with shocking stage antics on tour dates and a fierce indie/punk sound that his building a huge following. While Black Lips had only a cult following for their first few years as a band, they breaking onto the mainstream with their most recent album, Arabia Mountain, which features possibly the most unconventional instrument of all time: a human skull purchased on the black market. Black Lips are celebrating the album's success with a handful of 2011 tour dates this summer that may leave some audiences cringing.
Formed in 1999, the Black Lips toiled in relative obscurity in the first few years of their existence. Their debut, self-titled album and 2004's We Did Not Know the Forest Spirit Made the Flowers Grow went largely unnoticed, but gained the band a cult following. Black Lips' tour dates also gained them fans, as their shows were filled on-stage vomiting, urination, nudity, and fire due to their inexperience with their instruments. Black Lips began to experience a wider scope of success after the release of Good Bad Not Evil in 2007, which was well received by critics.
The band has continued their rise to fame with Arabia Mountain and 2011 tour dates that will be less likely to feature their earlier stage stunts. Beginning in late July, Black Lips will kick off an east coast concert schedule that will visit only a select few venues. 2011 tour dates for the Black Lips will end on September 8, so buy your tickets today before they sell out.