Battles | 2007 Tour Dates and New Album

Remember a while back when I first posted on Battles, one of my new favorite bands? It looks like some others are catching on, too…

As forbidding as the music can be at times, it’s also sprinkled with danceable beats and Braxton’s strange vocal melodies. His humming (“Layendecker”), whistling (“Race: In”), chirping (“Atlas”), sighing (“Bad Trails”) and grunting (“Tij”) adds a human dimension that space-age bachelor-pad composer Esquivel might’ve loved. Such playfulness isn’t normally associated with cerebral math-rock, and it makes “Mirrored” more enjoyable than its forbidding exterior might suggest. — Greg Kot, 5/22/07

It’s clear that the “catch-on” is due to their debut major release of their album, Mirrored, and you can stream the whole album this week for free on AOL’s Spinner.com. Here’s their first single off the album…

For me, personally, the catch was clearly this single and the hauntingly pounding drum beat…

The lineup sounds cool enough, and that song “Atlas” is wildly hypnotic. I’ve become completely obsessed with this song, maybe because of the chipmunk vocals, maybe because of the driving force of a backbeat, maybe because of the evil blips and bloops coming out of their keyboards, or maybe none of the above. — Me, 4/17/07

…and of course, their fantastic video for the single…

Battles – Atlas [YouTube]

Look at these guys perform. That is some awesome energy and I’ve been told that it transpires very similar when you see them live.

I think the album is great front to back, but be mindful of the fact that this is a very “acquired taste” sort-of composition. If you’re not too familiar with math rock or bands that clearly get off on writing complex tunes with lots of noise all about, I’m not sure that you’d like this after the first listen. Maybe it takes the right intro, and I definitely got a good one given that I saw their video for “Atlas” before I had heard anything else about this band.

Along with many other bands right now, Battles are coming back to the States soon to begin a national tour (dates attached after the jump). Festival-wise, they’re playing the Pitchfork Music Festival this summer right here in Chicago and the Seaport Music Festival in New York City. If you’re a fan at all of prog rock, this is a band that you might want to catch out. Like math rock? How about electro-noise freak-out jams? All of the above? As I said, give these guys a listen. Then burn your calculus book.


Battles | 2007 Tour Dates (continued from their current tour in Europe running until 6/1):

6/13/07 CHARLOTTESVILLE, VA SATELLITE BALLROOM
6/14/07 CHARLOTTE, NC THE MILESTONE
6/15/07 ATLANTA, GA DRUNKEN UNICORN
6/16/07 GAINESVILLE, FL COMMON GROUNDS
6/17/07 ORLANDO, FL THE SOCIAL
6/18/07 MIAMI, FL STUDIO A
6/19/07 TAMPA, FL CROWBAR
6/20/07 TALLAHASSEE, FL THE BETA BAR
6/22/07 BATON ROUGE, LA SPANISH MOON
6/23/07 HOUSTON, TX NUMBERS
6/24/07 AUSTIN, TX EMOS JR
6/25/07 DENTON, TX HALLEYS
6/27/07 ALBUQUEQUE, NM LAUNCHPAD
6/28/07 PHOENIX, AZ RHYTHM ROOM
6/29/07 SAN DIEGO, CA BEAUTY BAR
6/30/07 LOS ANGELES, CA TROUBADOUR
7/2/07 SAN FRANCISCO, CA SLIMS
7/3/07 PORTLAND, OR DOUG FIR LOUNGE
7/4/07 VANCOUVER, BC RICHARDS ON RICHARDS
7/5/07 SEATTLE, WA CROCODILE CAFE
7/6/07 BOISE, ID NEUROLUX
7/7/07 SALT LAKE CITY, UT URBAN LOUNGE
7/8/07 DENVER, CO LARIMER LOUNGE
7/10/07 KANSAS CITY, MO THE RECORD BAR
7/11/07 MINNEAPOLIS, MN TRIPLE ROCK
7/12/07 IOWA CITY, IA THE PICADOR
7/13/07 MILWAUKEE, WI STONEFLY BREWERY
7/14/07 CHICAGO, IL PITCHFORK MUSIC FEST
7/16/07 TORONTO, ON LEES PALACE
7/18/07 BOSTON, MA PARADISE
8/31/07 NEW YORK, NY SEAPORT MUSIC FESTIVAL