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MGMT, formerly named "The Management" ("The Management" was occupied by another artist so the band shortened "The Management" to "MGMT"), is an Americanmarker musical duo based in Brooklynmarker, New Yorkmarker, consisting of Ben Goldwasser and Andrew VanWyngarden. Formed at Wesleyan Universitymarker and originally with Cantora records, they signed with Columbia Records/Red Ink/Sony in 2006.

On October 5, 2007, Spin.com named MGMT "Artist of the Day". On November 14, 2007, Rolling Stone pegged MGMT as a top 10 "Artist to Watch" in 2008. The band was named 9th in the BBC's Sound of 2008 top 10 poll. They were also named as Last.fm's most played new artist of 2008 in their Best of 2008 lists.

Their first album as MGMT, Oracular Spectacular, debuted at number twelve on the UK album chart and number six on the Australian ARIA Charts, and hit number one on the Billboard Top Heatseekers chart. It was named the best album of 2008 by NME. MGMT also appeared prominently in Australia's Triple J Hottest 100 2008, coming in 2nd with "Electric Feel", 5th with "Kids" and 18th with "Time to Pretend."

History

Formation

Ben Goldwasser and Andrew VanWyngarden formed the band while attending Wesleyan Universitymarker during their freshman year."We weren't trying to start a band," remarked Goldwasser. "We were just hanging out, showing each other music that we liked." They experimented with noise rock and electronica before settling on what David Marchese of Spin calls "their current brand of shape-shifting psychedelic pop."They graduated in 2005 and toured extensively in support of the Time to Pretend EP, opening for indie rock band Of Montreal.

Oracular Spectacular (2007 - 2008)

In the autumn of 2006 Maureen Kenny signed the band to Columbia Records. The duo recorded with Flaming Lips/Sleater-Kinney music producer Dave Fridmann in 2007 for their major label debut, Oracular Spectacular. MGMT opened for of Montreal on tour in autumn 2007 as a five piece touring band including Matthew Asti (bass), James Richardson (drums), and Hank Sullivant (guitar). In November 2007 they performed for the first time in Europe supporting Asobi Seksu and The Courteeners at Koko in London. After March 2008 Hank Sullivan left the band to pursue his own band Kuroma. Will Berman joined as the new drummer, James Richardson switched from drums to guitar, and Matthew Asti remained on bass

Touring

MGMT performing at La Route du Rock 2008
MGMT performed at both the 2008 SXSW Music Festival and Austin City Limits festivals in Austin, the first day of Bonnaroo 2008, Coachellamarker Music Festival, performed twice at Glastonburymarker 2008, and also played Roskilde Festivalmarker, Reading Festival, partnering Leeds Festival, T in the Park and the Irish Oxegen Festival (where fans and spectators scaled the tent's internal rigging towers causing the gig to be temporarily stopped for 20 minutes).Lollapalooza and the Osheaga (Canada) festival as well as Summersonic (Japan), Oeiras Alive! (Portugal) and Rock Werchtermarker (Belgium) in 2008. August 2008 saw the band play the Hungary Sziget Festivalmarker, UK Reading and Leeds Festival, & at Lowlands in Holland, where they played their album integrally live. They also played at the Toronto Virgin Festival in 2008.

The band supported Radiohead on the Manchestermarker date of their world tour and went on a headline tour of the UK during November 2008, playing at venues such as Manchester Academymarker and Shepherd's Bush Empiremarker.

MGMT opened for M.I.A. on the Vassar Collegemarker date of her 2008 tour, and also played several shows with Beck while he toured in 2008. They also toured Australia with a headlining spot on the Meredith Music Festival line-up. They played a show at the Virgin Vestival on Toronto Island on September 6, 2008, playing nine songs off their Oracular Spectacular album. They also played the 2008 Street Scene festival in San Diegomarker. On February 27, 2009 MGMT performed alongside Spectrum at "The Dome" in Finsbury Parkmarker. MGMT also added another tour date in Australia at the Splendour in the Grass festival. MGMT is somewhat headlining this music festival with other well known bands, Bloc Party, The Flaming Lips, The Happy Mondays and Jane's Addiction.

MGMT played their first show of the year on June 9, 2009 in Little Rock, ARmarker. The band Chairlift opened the show. Caroline Polachek joined them for their encore for a cover of the Til Tuesday song "Voices Carry".

On June 11, 2009, MGMT played at Minglewood Hall in VanWyngarden's hometown of Memphis, TNmarker, where the band played three songs from their forthcoming album, including the title track, "Congratulations." Later in the week, the band played a late-night gig at Bonnaroo, where they were once again joined by members of Chairlift.

On July 1, 2009 MGMT returned "home" to Brooklyn to play another show at Prospect Park. They played "Congratulations," "It's Working," and "Song for Dan Tracey" off of their upcoming album.

MGMT opened for Paul McCartney, an admitted fan, at Fenway Parkmarker in Bostonmarker August 5-6, 2009.

On August 15, 2009 MGMT played in Hamburgmarker, Germany at the Dockville Festival and introduced some of their new songs to their german fans.

MGMT was one of the headlining bands for the Treasure Island Music Festival on Treasure Island in San Francisco, California on October 17th, 2009.

Legal proceedings

MGMT settled a legal dispute with the President of France, Nicolas Sarkozy in May 2009, receiving a settlement payment that they plan to donate to a charity to help musicians with similar legal battles. The song "Kids" was used on several occasions without permission (in 2008), at a party conference and in two online videos. The party paid a standard fee of €53 to the French music licensing party, but this license did not cover all uses of the song. The UMP, Sarkozy's political party, admitted that the song had been used without permission and offered a symbolic compensation of €1. The band rejected the offer, claiming it was "insulting". The band's lawyer commented that "we are dealing with acts of counterfeiting, with infringements of intellectual property." Ironically, Nicolas Sarkozy is known as a vocal supporter of stricter intellectual property laws.

Congratulations (2010)

MGMT has been recently working on their new album, Congratulations, expected to be released in January 2010. The band, including Matthew Asti, James Richardson and Will Berman from the live band, spent the summer of 2009 in Malibumarker recording the album with Pete Kember aka Sonic Boom, ex-Spacemen 3 and Spectrum, serving as producer/guru. MGMT debuted three new songs titled "Congratulations", "It's Working", and "Song for Dan Tracey" at recent shows. In a Rolling Stone interview a fourth song titled "Flash Delirium" was revealed to be on the upcoming album but has yet to be played live.

They have recently collaborated with up-and-coming alternative rapper Kid Cudi, and are featured on one track - Pursuit of Happiness from his album Man on the Moon: The End of Day, as well as the track "Worm Mountain" on The Flaming Lips' Embryonic. They were rumored to be featured on one track on Jay-Z's The Blueprint 3, but they did not appear on that album/www.inthemix.com.au/news/intl/43941/JayZ_drops_MGMT_from_The_Blueprint_3_reveals_full_tracklisting>.

On September 4, 2009, Beck announced his second Record Club covers album, Songs of Leonard Cohen. MGMT contribute, alongside Devendra Banhart, Andrew Stockdale of Wolfmother and Binki Shapiro of Little Joy. Andrew VanWyngarden chose the album.

Band name pronunciation

There has been some confusion over how to pronounce the band name. The band and their label confirmed that the correct pronunciation is to spell out the individual letters "M-G-M-T" [ɛm dʒi ɛm ˈti].

Band Members

  • Andrew James VanWyngarden (2002-present)
  • Ben David-Martin Goldwasser (2002-present)


Live Band

  • Matthew Asti- bass (2006-present)
  • James Richardson- drums (2006-2008) guitar (2008-present)
  • Will Berman- drums (2008-present)


Former Live Members

  • Hank Sullivant- guitar (2006-2008)


Discography

Albums



EPs



Singles



Album Appearances

  • Live at KEXP Vol.5- "Pieces Of What" (2009)


References

  1. New Musical Express, December 8, 2008 edition.
  2. http://www.koko.uk.com/gigs.php?event=456
  3. MGMT to sue Sarkozy for music use 26th Feb 2009
  4. http://stereokill.net/2009/09/04/beck-mgmt-banhart-cover-leonard-cohen/


External links




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