Bang the DrumGreetings, Earthlings! This week, a little feature on Bill Callahan, whose new album Apocalypse might be reviewed in this week’s print edition of prairie dog! Plus, right up front, a new track from Shad!

Shad & Skratch Bastid both posted this track on their respective websites two days after Shad’s surprise Juno win for Best Rap Recording last month, but Skratch had the good sense to use Soundcload while Shad, or rather Shad’s online agent, posted the track via Sendspace. Advantage: Skratch. I spoke with Shad over the phone yesterday for an upcoming music preview and he told me, “I don’t run my own Facebook group, I don’t do my own Twitter. Those traditional things people do to communicate with fans, I don’t really do. But at shows I love to make something a little more personal. I like to be able to some time and actually have a conversation with them.”
Shad & Skratch Bastid – Give You All I Can by Skratch Bastid

Gil Scott-Heron is easily among the top ten coolest people on planet. The title track of his 2010 album I’m New Here is a Bill (Smog) Callahan cover. What does that say about Bill? Jamie xx’s remix of the album, We’re New Here, is out now.

Kelly Hogan is pretty much the shit, even though it’s been 10 whole years since her last album. Mostly, she’s been singing back-up for people like Neko Case and Jakob Dylan. Here’s her take on Bill (Smog) Callahan’s “Strayed”.
mp3: “Strayed” by Kelly Hogan

Bill Callahan‘s third studio album under his own name is called Apocalypse. His first Bill Callahan album, Woke on a Whaleheart, was produced by Neil Michael Hagerty (of Royal Trux and Howling Hex), a noted Jack Kirby fan. If Hagerty had produced this one, it might have been called Apokolips.
mp3: “Baby’s Breath” by Bill Callahan

BONUS: Here’s a brilliant concert Callahan did for NPR while he was promoting his previous studio album, Sometimes I Wish We Were an Eagle.

Emmet Matheson is a freelance Wielder of the Astro-Force who fights for Earth on his blog A Bulldozer With a Wrecking Ball Attached. You can e-mail him at: bulldozerDOTwreckingballATgmailDOTcom