Doctor Wu's

I had no idea I was a producer you don’t even know you know until I came across this article by Brooklyn Magazine last week.  I’m listed along with such fantastic engineers as Jarvis Taveniere (great guy and fellow MX-5050 enthusiast), Chris Coady, and Shane Stoneback.  Thanks guys – you made my week!

I just finished a new record by NYC punks/goons Nuclear Santa Claust called Je Ne Sais Claust (yes, really).  We tracked it live to the Otari MX-5050 at Seaside Lounge one weekend and mixed and mastered it the next at Doctor Wu’s.  It was a total blast to work on, and a total blast out of the speakers – we harnessed a great Black Flag/Dead Kennedys vibe in sound and intensity, and cracked each other up constantly.  I can’t wait for this to come out on Don Giovanni Records.

 

I’ve also been working on a heart-felt documentary/portrait of Gil Scott Heron.  Told from the perspective of candid interviews with his closest friends and associates, it’s less of a biography and more of a tribute to a departed friend.  It was directed by Iain Forsyth and Jane Pollard, whose excellent current film 20,000 Days on Earth (a pseudo-doc starring/about Nick Cave) premiered at Sundance and will in theaters nation-wide next month.  I feel very honored to be mixing this film.

I was back in Chicago a couple weeks ago to work again at Pitchfork Music Festival.  I realized it was my eighth year working for the festival, and fifth running sound on the Blue Stage – whoa.  It’s always good to be back with the old crew and see a bunch of old buddies in the Midwest, and it’s the only front-of-house system I’ve ever seen with a Crane Song limiter – I love mixing on that system!  Bonus: in the airport, I came across this two-page article on Parquet Courts in the July issue of Rolling Stone!

PC Worship - Social Rust

I am thrilled to be able to share some music from the new PC Worship record Social Rust.  Pitchfork (and Stereogum and Impose) posted the semi-title track ‘Rust’ last week, to pretty unanimous excitement.  I mixed and mastered this record earlier in the year with lead-Worshipper Justin Frye (who recorded it at Roulette), and we blew each other away with what we came up with.  It’s honestly one of my favorite records I’ve worked on recently, by one of my favorite bands playing, so hold on to your butts.  Social Rust comes out September 9th on Northern Spy / Dull Tools.

 

Another skronk-tastic record I have to share is Jungle Green Meets the Blood Sisters.  Andrew/Jungle Green has worked with me to master his last few releases at Doctor Wu’s, and it’s been really fascinating to hear the growth and diversity of his music.  He’s released two singles of lo-fi doo-wop crooner jams with Kingfisher Bluez, but this new EP is a concentrated burst of no-wave-y freakouts focused around food and girls, featuring The Books‘ Paul de Jong on cello tantrums.  It’s a free download, and worth every penny!

 

And while we’re talking about guys upset about food and girls, I’d like to point out that The Last of the Great Romantics is now available online!  I mixed this film with director Duncan Skiles last fall, and it made the festival circuit earlier this year.  I’m a big fan of this rom-com – it’s clever and funny in an endearingly humble way, and as they point out on their site, cheaper than a cup of coffee!  Check it out!

 

Eaters is playing next week (August 13th) at Nothing Changes (formerly Weird Wednesdays) at Home Sweet Home in Manhattan.  We’ve got a new song in the reportoire, so come hang if you’ve got nothing better to do on a Wednesday night!  We play first, Future Blondes headline.

Thanks for reading this!  I’ve got a lot of great projects on deck, will post more when I can… feel free to reach out at jonathan[dot]schenke [at] gmail[dot]com

SCREENS Cover

The new Forest Fire record Screens is coming out September 10th on Fat Cat and is available now to pre-order. I recorded, mixed and co-produced the record with the band last fall, at Tree Time (Fat Cat’s studio upstate), Doctor Wu’s, and my home studio.  It was honestly one of my favorite record-making experiences of my career, and is some of the best sounding work I’ve ever done… no joke.  The first song “Waiting in the Night” and a brief interview is on MTV Hive for you to enjoy.

“She (Was My Baby)”, the second single from the Keepsies, is out now.  The Keepsies are Vince McClelland, Austin Brown (from Parquet Courts), and Jason Kelly (from Fergus & Geronimo).  I recorded some overdubs and mixed these songs last year, so I’m super excited that they’ve hit the web for everyone to enjoy!  Hopefully the third one will come out a bit faster…..


And the entire series of Catherine is now online!  The series was created by Jenny Slate and Dean Fleicher-Camp for the JASH Network (Sarah Silverman, Tim and Eric, Michael Cera, and Reggie Watts’ Youtube channel).  If you haven’t yet ventured down this mind-numbing wormhole of a show, here’s your perfect chance!

I just got back from Chicago, where I mixed the Blue stage at Pitchfork Music Festival.  It’s always nice going back and working with my friends and associates from when I lived out there, and it was extra special to have so many friends playing on my stage… Frankie Rose and her band, Parquet Courts, Chairlift… all slayed.  I rode back in the van with Parquet Courts, which was great to catch up with the gang, and got us all excited to get back into the studio in September to finish the album!

If you wanna talk sound, please write at jonathan.schenke[at]gmail.com.  Thanks for checking out my site!

Spin Magazine debuted the next new song from Fergus & Geronimo‘s upcoming album Funky Was the State of Affairs last week.  This is one of my favorite jams on the record, and was really fun to record with the second drum part and freaked-out chorus.  Spin had a really nice write-up about it here, and Pitchfork picked it up today too.  Hardly Art is releasing the record August 7th, so mark your calendars!

Wild Quiet, the new Junk Culture record, is coming out next week (July 31st) on Illegal Art.  I’m really amazed at how this record turned out, and I can’t wait for people to hear it.  In preparation, Deepak put together this video for the song “Growing Pains”, which debuted last week on Consequence of Sound.  Check out what they had to say here, and/or head over to RCRDLBL to download the track.

 

The new Wiccans album, Field II, is mastered (impeccably by Josh Bonati) and at the presses.  In celebration, Katorga Works posted the track “Telepathy” to stream.  Also, Wiccans are hitting the road next week – check out their tour dates on their Facebook page.

And Starring debuted a new video for the song “Aphonia” on Ad Hoc yesterday.  This is one of my favorite songs on ABCDEFG, the main riff kills…. if you haven’t heard it yet, their new album is sooooo good!  Spin gave it 8/10 and calls it “Frothing, Brooklyn-based chamber pot of gloriously skewed neo-classical noise-prog.”  Check it out already, man!

 

I just got back to NYC from Chicago, where I was mixing at Pitchfork Music Festival (for the sixth year straight, whoa).  It’s always a pleasure to be working with my old friends and co-workers at the fest, and this year had a lot of solid talent performing.  This year I had the pleasure of mixing Dirty Beaches, Thee Oh Sees, The Men, and Liturgy – all bands that have blown me away in the past.  Other things that I hadn’t heard before but were awesome: Willis Earl Beal, Danny Brown, and the Field…. I’m sure there were others, but my brain got fried in the heat and the rain!

 

Thanks for stopping by to read this!  Please hit me up if you want to talk about stuff: jonathan.schenke [at] gmail.com

Mindreading, the long-delayed second album by Singer, is out now on Drag City.  This was recorded in 2009 after Todd Rittmann left to form D(ead) Rider (which is particularly awesome live), and the results are more synth-oriented than Unhistories, and even more abstract.  I assisted the band in the recording (setting up mics and getting sounds for the group to build upon), and it was mixed by Randall Dunn (who has previously worked on releases by Sunn 0))), Earth, and Black Mountain).

I think Drag City sums it up best: “Democracy in motion…slow motion. Drifting into and through an amoebic evolution in sound, Mindreading discerns a new form of pop music. Paranormal or supernatural – take your pick!”

In other news, the upcoming Pterodactyl record Spills Out is finished!!  It turned out amazing, we’re all super-psyched on the outcome, and the early artwork looks fantastic.  Look out for it this Fall on Brah/Jagjaguwar.

Also, I just returned from another year working at Pitchfork Music Festival.  Shabazz Palaces, Kylessa, James Blake, and OFF! were definitely the highlights on my stage.  As always, it was a marathon weekend, but my friends and co-workers on the staff made it all run well, and it was awesome to see my Chicago folk again.  Big shout out to Matt, the Ice Cream Man!