Influential trip hoppers Portishead — made up of keyboardist/multi-instrumentalist Geoff Barrow and singer Beth Gibbons — have announced that they will be performing exclusively at All Tomorrow's Parties, Nightmare Before Christmas in December 2007. The annual holiday music fest takes place in England and in the past, has featured such notables as Boards of Canada, Aphex Twin, Stereolab, Modest Mouse, Sonic Youth, Lou Reed, Violent Femmes, PJ Harvey, Yo La Tengo and scores of others.
This will be their first live set in 10 years. More exciting is the possibility of a new album, which is currently in the works, though the actual date of its release has not yet been confirmed.
In much older news that I intended on posting a few weeks ago, Secret Machines founding member and guitarist Benjamin Curtis has left the band to pursue other musical projects, namely his new band, School of Seven Bells. His brother and SM co-founder Brandon Curtis, and SM drummer Josh Garza plan to continue touring as a two-piece because "Benjamin really isn't replaceable." The duo plans on becoming more focused on their music as a reduced lineup without ruling out the possibility of inviting guitarists to play with them.