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Arcade Fire Is Coming Back to New York, This Time Way Uptown

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Arcade Fire played five shows in a Greenwich Village church last month, and now the band is set to announce tomorrow that it's coming back to New York at the beginning of May — and to an equally head-scratching venue: the United Palace Theater in Washington Heights. The former movie palace at Broadway at 175th Street — currently home of the Reverend Ike's Christ Community United Church — will start hosting rock shows next week, when Bloc Party becomes the first band to play the way-uptown venue. And Modest Mouse, Björk, and Iggy and the Stooges are booked there in the next few months. (Okay, fine: Arcade Fire is doing a Radio City show in May, too.)

Indie Music Awards a Little Too Indie?

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Thank heaven for David Cross. The 2007 PLUG Independent Music Awards at Irving Plaza Saturday night were an appropriately “indie” mess. Would-be attendees stood for hours in the cold before being informed that the “day-of” tickets allegedly available at the sold-out show were a myth, the sound system was plagued with technical problems all night long, and, during the long wait for sets by scene favorites Stephen Malkmus and the Jicks, El-P, and Silversun Pickups, attendees sat through a succession of odd, intermittently successful acts, very few of which went off without a significant delay. A much-hyped “iPod Battle” found the participants standing awkwardly onstage for ten minutes before they were able to kick off the “battle,” which culminated with a pair of oddballs in gladiator masks sprinkling glitter on each other to the tune of “Oh Yeah” by Yello. Jason Trachtenburg (of the Trachtenburg Family Slideshow Players) led a hoarse, out-of-tune sing-along of “World’s Best Friend” (his wife and daughter were absent) that had most audience members heading for the bar for depressingly tiny $8 drinks. A barbershop quartet sang a cappella between bits. And so it fell to poor emcee David Cross to make light of things.

Indie Rockers Too Cool for Manhattan, Head to Jersey

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In other Stephen Colbert–related news, we'll mention that the Decemberists — the "hyperliterate prog-rock" band he recently battled for green-screen dominance — yesterday released their U.S. touring schedule for spring. As New York has already deemed the group about as brilliant as possible, we were a bit miffed to discover that no New York City venue made the list. But then we saw where the tour kicks off: Jersey City. Of course it does.Lori Fradkin Exclusive: Decemberists Announce Spring U.S. Tour [Pitchfork] If You Lived Here, You'd Be Cool By Now [NYM]