Creatures of all shapes, sizes, and strings can sing. Take it from The Muppet Show act Dr. Teeth and the Electric Mayhem. Everyone from Animal to Janice showed up at Outside Lands Festival for their first live performance and they absolutely killed it. If you’re looking for music news from regular human beings, we’ve got that too: Arcade Fire covered Bruce Springsteen, Lauryn Hill’s Austin City Limits performance is incredible, J. Mascis joined Pearl Jam in Boston, and Joyce Manor shared a riveting comeback single.
This past weekend, San Francisco saw Outside Lands Festival take over its grounds with a slew of impressive bands like Radiohead and Lana Del Rey. Perhaps the most impressive of the bunch were the ones tied up in strings: Dr. Teeth and the Electric Mayhem. The classic band from The Muppets performed live for the first time ever since their Muppet Show debut over 40 years ago. Though their set only lasted for five songs, each member gave it their all. Dr. Teeth, Animal, Lips, Floyd Pepper, Janice, and Zoot’s reunion marked a joyful time. After performing original “Can You Picture That?” they covered The Mowglis, Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros, The Band, and The Beatles. It was rife with drum solos and chatter, proving any naysayers wrong. Puppets can speak for themselves sometimes, you know? [Rolling Stone]
Almost ten years ago, Bruce Springsteen brought a young Arcade Fire onstage with him in Ottawa, Ontario and then later covered their song “Keep The Car Running.” For those in attendance, it was an unforgettable experience. Hell, for people who watched clips online in the days following, it was an impressive task, too. During President Obama’s staff ball a few years later, Arcade Fire returned the favor by covering Springsteen’s “Born in the USA,” and now they decided to bring it out once again during WayHome Festival in Canada this past weekend. Check out the footage above and watch as they nod to that original 2007 performance by leading right into “Keep The Car Running” when their cover comes to an end. [Pitchfork]
As Austin City Limits rolls out its new series, we remember why their episodes are, and always have been, worthwhile. The Texas-based festival hosts several indoor, properly-microphoned sets by artists that play the festival, later screening the shows on TV and online. To prep for their upcoming edition, they released Lauryn Hill‘s latest episode. In it, she plays Fugees classics, solo tracks, and a gorgeous Nina Simone cover. It’s plenty of songs worth singing along to, though given how powerful Ms. Hill’s voice is, it may be better to sit back, relax, and let her set leave you in awe while the 42nd season of Austin City Limits premieres on October 1. [Consequence of Sound]
Pearl Jam are undeniably one of the biggest rock acts in the world, but they still know ways to turn that rock into something even more guitar-driven. To close out their two-night takeover of Fenway Park in Boston, Pearl Jam brought none other than MA-based icon J. Mascis of Dinosaur Jr. out onto the stage. The gray-haired fellow helped them turn a cover of Neil Young’s “Rockin’ in the Free World” into something much larger than it originally sounds. It was jam packed with solos. What else would you expect? [Consequence of Sound]
Pop punkers have plenty to be happy about today. Joyce Manor announced their return. After 2014’s excellent Never Hungover Again, the four piece have surfaced with single “Fake I.D.” and a new album, Cody, due out October 7 via Epitaph. The song is bouncy and slips a quick line about Yeezy (“What do you think about Kanye West?/ I think that he’s great/ I think he’s the best”) into the mix. The sound of 2016 has never been so current. Stream it above. [Consequence of Sound]
Image: John E Barrett/Disney