Sunday, December 30, 2007

12/29/07 - Sean Kirkpatrick, Bridges and Blinking Lights

started off the night with knuckles at mckinney tavern, local watering hole and, at least last night, supermodel hangout. tried to watch the aggie game amidst all the distractions. left at 10 to head to the doublewide, and unbelievably, knuckles came with, after performing an inhuman feat involving an entire pitcher of beer, and despite the record-setting scenery at the MT.

doublewide was a pretty hapnin place - shoulder to shoulder in the bar, not so much in the live music area (nothin unusual there). knuckles thot the stamp of a boot that we got on our hands looked like a penis - paging dr. freud.

bridges and blinking lights was up first. saw these guys at RGRS, but wanted to see them again to confirm or refute my original impression. unfortunately, it was confirmed - these guys can rock, but i'm sorry, the lead vocals have got to go. knuckles said exactly the same thing, without me even telling him what i had originally thot. the dude tries to belt it out, but he just doesn't have the voicebox for it. as knuckles said, you're just dyin for him to grab his sack and belt it out (think Ian Johnson from Hogpig (R.I.P.)), but he just can't. maybe it sounds better on a cd, but it just doesnt work live. anyways, like i said, the songwriting, geetar and drum work was nice.

Sean kirkpatrick headlined. second time to see him. this guy's got some major talent - he definitely knows his way around a keyboard. once again, some really cool, well-written, unconventional piano-pop songs. it's amazing how a piano-based trio can still make you groove out with only three instruments - just sean on keys, a dude on synth and a drummer. thot the drummer was aces. if i had to pick on somethin, there were a couple times where i thot the whole stop-the-music-so-sean-can-plink-out-some-discordant-and-seemingly-random-keys on the keyboard seemed kind of forced and out of place. a minor criticism, really. other than that, a really great set.

after zini's (where knuckles attempted to steal my alternate-universe girlfriend), stopped by my beloved club dada to chat with the crazy Bat-Lady of Deep Ellum. a great way to end the evening.

Saturday, December 29, 2007

12/28/07 - Future Cast, The Campaign, JOsh weathers Band

hey hey hey people!! this one should be shoert, cuz i'm pretty wasted asnd unable to expound on the usual matters like i usually do. lucky for you, i think!!

knuckles was the designated driver - you are my hereo, knuckels!!!

started out at hooligans on the sdquare. god i love the square!!! i mean i really love it thtere. hooligans was nice, and so was teh waitress sam. got. loaded. up!!! thanks, tk, you are my hereo, too!!!!

went to haileys then. first was josh weathers band, a southern rock sorta band. lotsa bluesy pop rock numbers, the kind that gets the ladies dancin. gotta love em for that if nothin else. some really good stuff.

lotsa delicious scenery. lotsa evidence of my short people theory, too.

damn near had a crowd of friendds there, what with joe the boy toy and batman and wifey, plus tk and knuckles. itwas great!!!

next up was the campaign, who i'd seen before at my beloved club dada. some more great stuff, piano-led bluesy pop. gawd i cant stand covers - they played the billy joel cvoer again(movin out), and i had to fuckn leave the place until they were done. i mean actually leave the fuckin place!! man thats weird, but thats the way i am. other than that, i loved their set, once again. some kick ass stuff.

tk almost got his ass kicked by some hot blonde. hahahahaha!!!! wtf????

last up was the future cast. formerly the barons, and if you like Muse, you'll like them. very very similar. uh, very. i like muse, so i was amused (ha!). but i'm afraid they'll need to define their own sound if they're gonna make it further.

hey! finally there's somewhre to go in denton for eats at 2 in the mornin!! somewhere called fuzzy's or somethin like that just south of dans silverleaf. a taco joint sorta like tin star, except cheaper. damn good stuiff- check it oot!! skip the fuckin hot sauce, tho. thats my advice. oh, and their bathroom works just fine.


mebbe sean k and bridges and blinking lights tomorrow at the doublewide...

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

12/26/07 - Max, Broose (@ the fucking Cavern)

omigod have i mentioned how much i HATE THE FUCKING CAVERN???? jesus christ if i never set foot in that place again i'll be a happy man. cmon, spune, cant you find a different venue?? cheezus.

tonight was an example of me tryin to force one in. couldnt really find a good show, but i needed to feed the beast, and i liked what i heard on Mur's myspace page (who Max the headliner was a part of), so i thot what the hell. bad decision, and not really the acts' fault(s). the cavern is just not the place for intimate, acoustic geetar/piano solo acts, what with all the fucking glamour girls with their fucking pointy shoes sipping their fucking white wine talking about their fucking iphones they got for christmas, yakking louder than the fucking band, then when the music stops, turning around and screaming woohoo like they were actually fucking listening to the music. goddam, i hate that place. yeah, those people are probably at other venues too, but at least at those places there's room for them to socialize somewhere else, instead of right in fuckin front of me.

broose opened up, just him and his geetar, some nice songs, some above-average geetar work. really nice. notfernothin, but he looked like he was separated at birth from Will Arnett from SNL, except with bleach-blonde hair. wore some sort of lederhosen with elfin boots. nice stuff, from what i could hear over the din.

max, from Mur, was next. started out solo on the pianer. nice husky, low voice (sorta heard joe cocker sometimes). switched to geetar after a few songs. joined by friend with electric a while later. again, some really nice songs, and i dug his voice, but goddam, it got impossible to ignore the fucking crowd after his first few. had some dickwad in an oh-so-hip-and-ironic crocheted grandma hat practically back himself on top of me. couldnt take any more, so i left.

and the search for the next show begins...

Friday, December 21, 2007

12/20/07 - Matthew and the Arrogant Sea, Florene, Backflap, Scarily Terrible/Verulf (RGRS)

had to get in one last show before a short hiatus, so i headed out to rubber gloves on a thursday night.

missed a childlike fear. i'd seen them before, and i just wasn't motivated enough to make it there in time.

second was Scarily Terrible. or Verulf. i'm not really sure, since they never said. lots of people on stage - 2 guitars, drummer, keys, and two dudes sitting on the stage, alternately tweakin knobs on their machines and runnin out the back door in the middle of songs to do gawd knows what. played i think 2 songs. seemed like the geetar player played the same refrain over and over for the length of the 10-minute long songs, and the others embellished around that. no vocals, per se, just ahhs and oohs. twas aight.

next up was backflap. 4-man - guitar, bass, keys, drummer. keyboard chick in distractingly tight jeans. really unconventional, totally infectious songs. loved the bizarre song structures. totally appreciate the creativity. heard some primus influence. drummer did excellent job of keepin it all together. had a song about a cow, and one about a lesbian who hates weiners, i think. great set. really dug it. would love to see again.

florene - seen these guys before. 2-man, tons of keys and macs, definite panda bear/AC vibe. good stuff. like what the geetar added. played 3 or 4 long songs.

Matthew and the Arrogant Sea - 3rd time to see these guys (see previous reports here and here). startin to learn the set - love "you still love me blondie" and "i'm no snake". didnt like the 3rd song, a really slow instrumental that he acknowledged was a cock-tease. anyways, besides that, it was another enjoyable (tho short) set. i'm always amazed when bands play with such great energy and passion when there are only 5 people in the audience. gawd bless em for that.

froze my ass off in there again. why is there a ceiling fan goin 90 miles an hour when it's 45 degrees outside?

overall, a good night - will definitely help tide me over until i can venture out again...

Monday, December 17, 2007

12/15/07 - Chemistry Set

OK, OK - I have heard the clamoring of my adoring public, so here's yer damn trip report (tony).

this was the night i proved my dedication to and sacrifice for the indie music scene, leaving a truly hapnin xmas bash at batman's house with lots of free booze and an abundance of females to support one of my all-time favorite bands. i left behind beer-with-a-side-of-motor-oil pong, drunken discussions about piledriving, and the (alleged) wing-man assistance of the legendary mr. Q (in my defense, i thot he was bustin my balls).

anyhow, with my sanity and manhood being questioned by all, i drove down to downtown dallas to City Tavern, with tk ridin shotgun. i was amazed how alive that area is - traffic jams on main street, tons of people, valet stands everywhere. ended up findin a metered spot that you didnt have to pay after 6 - nice. why isn't deep ellum like that? hmmm, suspicious. no cover at city tavern - also nice. twas a nice place, from what i remember - lotsa wood, i think. not overly smoky.

got there for the last few minutes of Arthur Yoria, performing solo. wouldn't mind hearing more of him sometime. had loopers, machines, etc. to jazz up the sound. really pretty good, from what i heard.

headlining was the always stupendous Chemistry Set. As i've said before, i am so in love with this band, i dont think i could ever be disappointed with one of their performances. every song is so well-written, clever, catchy, rockin, beautiful - what else can i say? they are literally the only band in town whose show i would never miss, hapnin xmas party or not. they graced us with an extended set, too, hitting all of my favorites. it was a fantastic set, and i am incredibly glad i went. got to talk to meredith before and stephen after - really nice folks. made a couple requests for their next show (1/11 at Dada - don't miss it).

went back to the party afterwards (2:30ish), but it was mostly a sausage-fest at that point. drunken sausages, at that.

Monday, December 10, 2007

12/9/07 - Tartufi, Matthew and the Arrogant Sea, Handclaps and Harmonies

had to go to haileys to see tartufi again - bands that good just cant be missed, no matter how hard it is to get up and go to work the next mornin.

and hey! knuckles came out, after learning aboot the joys of hard licker and sody-water. heh heh, after a few of those, you'll be up for anything.

first up was handclaps and harmonies, a 5-man band with a sound reminiscent of the beatles and the beach boys. after hearing their myspace page, i was worried i was gonna hear a bunch of sappy, happy silly songs, but these guys were much better than that. yes, there was a bit of sappiness (turn your frown upside down), but the 50/60's-inspired happy pop songs were very well written and executed. nice job with 3-part harmonies, too. love that. have to say, tho - the all-white pants have gotta go (or at least a few of them need to move up a size, IF you know what i mean. heh heh, just kiddin guys).

amanda showed up (tartufi are good friends of hers). knuckles asked me if i'd been caught cheating (goin somewhere besides dada, he meant), but i said hey, if she's here too, it's not cheating, right? then knuckles said somethin about the rules involving threesomes, how you have to pretend you're not enjoying it or something. at least that's been his experience with that sort of thing.

got to talk to brian from tartufi for a bit - he remembered me from the show the night before. super nice dude. i'll be able to say i knew him when...

next up was matthew and the arrogant sea, and i'll tell ya - these boys have something. second time i've seen them, and i liked it even better than the first time. sort of a spacey folk feel, sorta like animal collective, but much more melodic and beautiful. i'd maybe even compare it more to panda bear's stuff, but maybe thats just cuz of the filtered/echoed vocal effects that they both use. incredible set of pipes on lead - dude can belt it out. some hauntingly beautiful stuff, i thot. definitely nearing the top of my list of local faves.

Last was tartufi, who once again were phenomenal (see yesterday's post for my first review). they did an extended set (shweet!), so we got to hear both some newer and some older material (the new stuff was "for amanda", and the older stuff was "for our new friend steve, who came out two nights in a row". ha! how cool is that?). absolutely loved the way lynne would sing a line or two, loop it, sing over that and loop it, then sing over that to create a 3-part harmony. truly beautiful. sometimes when i heard her sing, it would remind me so much of Le Mystere De Voix Bulgare - how's that for an obscure reference? and man, can she play the geetar (and bass). fantastic, hard-drivin stuff. even got the thumbs-up from knuckles, a heavy metal-head.
once again, a truly fantastic performance - definitely made me glad i made the trip.

during their set, a clearly plastered chick started foolin around on the steps up to the stage, and amanda showed she could have a second career as a bouncer. now THAT was funny.

unbelievably, the joint was nearly empty. i dont pretend to understand.


well shee-ut, somehow i screwed up the comments settings and turned them off, but you'll be happy to know i fixed it, so you can now comment away (for real).

Sunday, December 9, 2007

12/8/07 - Drams, Happy Bullets, Shibboleth, Tartufi, JD Whittenburg

been a while since i wrote one of these completely sober, so, fair warning

went to club dada (geez, four weeks in a row now) for boca tinta's b-day bash.

when i hold out my ID to beard, he says, i dont need that, i know who you are. heh heh. cool. then he tells me his sure-thing picks for some bowl games, reelin off a list of teams (including my aggies, i should mention). i'm thinkin, hey thanks for the tip, man, but i am in no shape to remember anything right now.

couldnt get there til 8, so i missed dave little (comedian). first band i saw was JD Whittenburg, who i'd seen before at haileys. definitely enjoyed this set more than the haileys one, couldnt really tell you why. seemed like jd's voice was a bit stronger this time, less reedy. sound system was definitely better, i know that (tho i had to harass the sound guy to turn up the #2 mic - yea, im workin on it, he says. workin on it??? isnt it just a damn knob? ah well, he eventually fixed it). they played a set full of really nice piano pop songs with just a tinge of alt-country. have to say, just like at the haileys show, the thing that did it for me was the backing vocals. i have a thing for harmonies, and this band does it so well - probably the best i've heard in the past year. (yes, it's amanda, but no, i'm not brown-nosing - look at my blog entry for the haileys show - i said the same thing, and that was back before i knew her). i think the advantage JDW has is that amanda is a full-time vocalist (ok, with part-time tambourine duties), and that allows her to concentrate all her efforts on it, and she is very, very good at it. she adds so much more than just a few harmonized notes on top of the lead, the notes she sings have a life of their own. beautiful voice, too. i know i would definitely not enjoy JDW as much without those beautiful harmonies. anyways, it was a very enjoyable start to the evening.

next up was Tartufi, from san francisco, and omigod, this was an absolutely transcendant experience. all apologies to my favorite local bands - still love you guys, but this had to have been the best set i have seen since i started goin to shows a year ago. amanda told me they would blow my mind, and she could not have been more right. this is a case where the unbelievable music coming off the stage completely resonated with me. i cant explain why, i have a hard time even describing what i was hearing. one guy on percussion (and bullhorn, ha!), and one gal on guitars, vocals, plus effects, loopers, etc. she'd play a riff on one guitar, loop it, then switch out to a bass or some other guitar, play that for a bit, do some vocals and loop it, etc. etc., until they'd built up a beautiful multi-layered sonic landscape. definite GYBE and Animal Collective influences, but more melodic and listener-friendly (which is not an insult, in my book). just some really remarkable music, howzat for descriptive? i was absolutely transfixed. met the band after, babbled incoherently at them, and bot the cd. if you ever have a chance to catch these guys, do not miss it (i'm even considering driving out to haileys tonight to catch their (midnight!) set, as insane as that is, on a work night). truly incredible.

at some point, mis compadres showed up. no random-chick tonsil-hockey tonight, tho, but not for lack of tryin on their part.

next up was shibboleth, who i've seen before. they did a nice set of catchy, bluesy, head-bobbin instrumental tunes.

then was the happy bullets, who i've seen twice before. really enjoyed this set. liked the way they continually switched up the lead vocal role, kept things fresh. absolutely loved the trumpet and trombone combo (plus the trumpet player was hot (it's a chick, you asses)). a great set of well-written, smart, plucky, infectious indie-pop songs. i think "vice and virtue ministry" has to be one of my favorite songs right now - go check it out on their myspace page. made the mistake of lettin amanda know i loved that song, so when it came on, she yanked me off my chair and brought me up front to dance. a total riot, but omi-effin-god, i'm one of those people that should never dance in public. thank gawd i was pretty plowed, and thank gawd my buddies didnt have a phone with video, or i'd have to move out of state.

last was the drams. very tight group - you can tell these guys have some talent, and they've been at it for a while. 6 guys on-stage, including slide guitar. shades of Sorta, the eagles. dont know if they always have the slide guitar, but they definitely veered into alt-country territory tonight (not that there's anything wrong with that). seemed to be a decent crowd there for them, based on the number of people singing along.

very very tired at that point, so skipped zini's, much to my alternate-universe girlfriend's disappointment, i'm sure.

all in all, another exceptional night at dada.

Saturday, December 8, 2007

12/6/07 - Smile Smile, Calhoun, Frontier Brothers (Cavern)

writin this WAY too long after the event, just so you know...

frontier brothers - 3-man (guitar, keys, drums (no bass)). definite beatles influence, some space-pop and power-pop. lead vocals a bit unconventional (smiths-like?), not my fav. some good stuff, just didn't connect with me.

Calhoun - read one of my prior reports to see how much i dig calhoun. i do have to say, tho - this performance wasn't quite as magical as the dada show. dono why, mebbe the environment ( i hate the cavern), mebbe the sound system - not sure. still a great set.

Smile Smile - listened to a couple songs, but since i'd already heard them twice, and it was really late on a weeknight, i split.

Sunday, December 2, 2007

12/1/07 - Lamar Murphy, The Campaign, Great Raven, Ryan Parker

well you're on a bridge to nowhere and you;re gettin there fast, put it in the past, put it in the past. if this is a race then i hope you come last, youre on a bridge to nowhere and youre gettin there fast...

another great night at club dada for me. i tell ya, amanda as co-owner there has been teh best thing that couldve happened to me, i've had so many good nights there since she's taken over the booking, it's incredible. she definitely knows what she's doin

and hey! i was actually not alone tonight!! DP decided to venture out finally. so nice to have company along!

here i was so worried that i was gonna be persona non grata at dada (whoa!) cuz of the crappy (meaning negative) review i wrote last week, but amanda was actually HAPPY that i had written it, despite the fact that she was the one that booked the crappiness. man that gal's got the right stuff - honesty, integrity, passion. if only everyone in the Dd music scene had what she had, it'd be a different story 'round here. she is the greatest.

it was a bluesy bluesy night at dada, starting with Ryan Parker, and thankfully it wasn;t just him and his geetar - he had a bass player and drummer with him. this guy was perty good. nice voice. half the time he played an electric geetar, half the time an acoustic, sometimes i heard dave matthews, sometimes SRV. have to say, sounded a tad repetitive after a while, same old bluesy riffs/melodies. also, a bit too cheery and love dovey maybe (i'm a bit jaded on the whole true-love bullshit right now). some really nice guitar work and some nice bass work, too. lots of talent on the stage, just need to mix it up a bit, and stop talkin aboot yer lovely wife. why does that piss me off so much? well it dont take sherlock holmes to figure that out.

next up was RUMANDCOKE, and it was delicious. well mebbe not, but it did the trick anyways.

after that was Great Raven, a last-minute fill-in. i had seen these guys once before at the cavern, and didnt really connect, but tonight was different. at the cavern, i swear teh lead sanger spent 90% of his time at the keys, over-emoting, but tonight, he spent 90% of his time on teh geetar, and it was night and day. these guys kicked my ass. still in the bluesy pop vein of the evening, but they rocked the joint out. 5-man band, with keys. DP's favorite band of the evening. they still seem to be obsessed with wearing funky hip headgear, but tonight i forgave them for it. they didnt seem to be selling a cd, and didnt stick around afterwards to chat. oh well - next time. i will definitely see them again.

some decent scenery there, tonight, to keep DP happy. (ok, me too)

third was the campaign, from fort worth. these guys were fantastic. im sorry, teh myspace page shows three guys, but i seem to remember 4 of them up there. mebbe i was seeing double. have to ask DP. lead was definitely on keys, pounding away, i remember that much. great bluesy piano pop sorta stuff. amanda says she heard squeeze (black coffee in bed) - yes, thats a great comparison (why cant i come up with that stuff? shee-ut). did a cover of billy joel's movin out, and it fit perfectly in their set, if that tells you anything. great keybd work, i like that a lot. dug the lead vocals. got me noddin my head like a bobblehead, i can tell you. im sorry, im very tired. very talented group. would love to see again. got a free cd from 'em.

checked out the scene at kettle art a couple doors down. some really nice stuff in there, i thot. amanda dragged me over to meet frank, etc. such nice people. omigod if i had life to do over agin i think i would surround myself with artsy types with noserings and tats and mohawks and such. sweet baby jesus, can i have a do-over??

last was Lamar Murphy, from tennessee. omigod, the place absolutely cleared out before these guys started. i felt so bad for them - DP and me literally the only only ones left, besides employees. anyways, they were pretty good- vocals a bit unusual, not exactly mainstream melodies - more complex than most. i really dont know who to compare them to - modest mouse, maybe? 4-man band, but one dude only played the tambourine and shaker, and did backup vocals that you couldnt hear. as DP said, if times got hard, he'd be the first to go. sorry, that's mean. these guys were definitely talented, but in more of a headphone-listenin way, and not a live rock show way, knowwhatimean? i think they cut their set pretty short, bein as how there was no one there.

last but not least: pizza at zinis - you know it.

Saturday, November 24, 2007

11/23/07 - The Peekers, jean-eric, Marcus Rubio

after watchin my aggies kick some longhorn ass at the infamous mckinney tavern, i found myself on my way to club dada at 6fuckin30 to meet up with batman and his crew to see hard day's night. easily the earliest i've ever been to deep ellum. wasnt expectin a cover for these jokers but there was one. fuckers played for like 4 freakin hours, one boring-ass beatles song after another. yeah, yeah, the were goodat what ttehy were doin, and they sure got the ladies dancin, but come on, how many fuckin times do you wanna hear those same fuckin beatles songs?? jesus, enough is enough, i say. after they weer finally done (like 1015, no shit!), went to zini's to get some pizza, served by the far-out lookin but insanely cute goth chick who i determined would be my girffriend in an alternate universe. nuf about that. batman damn near ate pizza off the floor, he was so hungry. wouldve liked to have seen that, i can tell you.

back at dada, marcus rubio took the stage, and let me tell you, this dude has some major talent. one-man band (18-year-old!), plays a lot of violin (which i'm always a sucker for), uses effects and loops and such. would play the violin, put it in a loop, then whip out acoustic geetar to accompany. many-layered songs. great stuff. (batman was offended that music was comin out the speakers while he wasnt touchin an instrument. good grief, batman, its called tech-no-lo-gy, thats how a one-man band has a kickass show when he's only a one-man band). voice not exactly the best, a tad whiny (might've been straining cuz of the venue), but it worked. really enjoyed the set.

next up was jean-eric, who are apparently cronies of the peekers. jesus christ what are they supposed to be? i sure as hell dont know. alternative-lifestyle dude and chick in 50's glasses, rappin white-man style to tracks on their ipod. does the carpet match the drapes? does the carpet match the drapes? thats all i member. just aboot killed me. and yes, eric informs us, his carpet does indeed match his drapes. blarch!

last up was the peekers, from shreveport. 6-man (uh, with two chicks, soory). dono what their deal was, but they did not seem to give a shit about their performance. lots of shitty-ass singin, damn near caterwaulin is what i'd call it, bandmembers singing out of tune with each other (i dont think on purpose), callin up people from the audience to add to the cacophany (yea, thats what we need - lets get eric from jean-eric to sing with us, he can make us sound even more disjointed!), guitars screechin, barely a melody to be found, people more interested in drinkin and smokin onstage than actually performing. i dono, i couldnt take it. left early. now keep in mind i'd been drinkin since 230, so i was pretty ragged out at that point, and my patience was pretty thin. maybe thats their schtick, all chaos-y disjointed happy-go-lucky shit (tho no one seemed happy), but i just didn't get it. i tried to stick it out, hopin it would get better, but it never did (plus my ride was walkin out the door).

ah well, left with a big smile on my face anyways.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Please - comment away

I may regret this, but I have now enabled anonymous comment posting, since my buddies told me how creatively frustrated they were because they couldn't leave comments on my blog (note - i am lying). I still have accept/reject ability, tho, to avoid the spam problem.

So please - comment away, even if it's to say this blog is worthless (tho I already know that).

Saturday, November 17, 2007

11/16/07 - The Whigs, Wild Sweet Orange, Calhoun (no really)

like i said, this was a fantastic night, for a lot of different reasons.

started the front-loading activities at bone daddy's, getting ignored by the waitress who'd rather spend her time with the punkass bitches in cocked-to-the-side straight-brim ball caps. yeah, the usual. headed to dada alone, also as usual - DP bailed on me, somethin aboot 3.5 hours of sleep or somethin.

completed front-loading activity sittin in my car on elm street (love dada, but can't afford to drank there, not my beloved licker, anyways).

talked to beard at the door, told him i felt like a dick, but i should be on the list. never done that before, but i needed to. luckily amanda was there at the bar, and somehow she remembered who i was, but she let me in anyways (har!). felt bad about actin' the cheapskate, but they were totally cool about it. pretty sure i told beard way more about my life than he wanted to know at that point.

got to talk to amanda quite a bit (at least it seemed like quite a bit to me, and i'm sure it did for her). there was a lot of blog-talk - you people wouldnt understand. just kiddin. i knew somewhat about the viciousness that's in the local music scene - i read weshotjr's comments section - but i had no idea of the extent of the vitriol. she had story after story about the hatred, the slander, the backstabbing. people going out of their way to tear others down. i was amazed. i just dont get it. if those people would just take a step back and look at things with a wider perspective, they'd realize - in the grand scheme of things, those who are involved in the local indie music scene occupy a very small corner of society - it's like your own private club, full of (relatively-speaking) like-minded people who share a love of and a commitment to music of one kind or another. you are all "in this thing together" - why would you want to tear down your own brudders and sisters? passionate debates and rivalries are fine, even a good thing for the scene, but in the end, you've got to support each other. maybe it's a middle-age perspective thing - as you get further on in life, i think you adopt a more live-and-let-live attitude. well, except for punkass bitches in straight-brim ball caps. oh and bluetools, too. yea, F those guys.

enough of that, eh?

first up was Calhoun, and what i kept thinking to myself during their set was, this. is. why. i. do. this. This is IT. their music was life-affirming, magical, blissful, soul-filling. exactly what i needed. song after beautiful song, i was in heaven, standin there with eyes closed and a giant stupid-ass grin on my face. they play a blend of earnest folk and pop rock that just envelopes you with its melodies, harmonies, and straight-out rockin guitars. it's a performance like this that makes it all worthwhile. i could've left then and been happy. great call by amanda, who booked them after hearing wild sweet orange. they played a lot of songs from the cd they're workin on - can't wait for that. needles to say, i'll be seeing these guys as much as possible in the future. got to talk to tim briefly after the set, and told him how much what i just heard meant to me, and i'm sure he thought, well at least we have the drunken 40-year-old market sewn up.

next up was Wild Sweet Orange (love that name), from alabammy. loved these guys. very similar in style to calhoun, maybe less folk-influenced, just some beautiful, melodic guitar-led pop. 5-man, usually 3 guitars plus bass. loved the (unique) voice on lead (reminds me of someone, just can't place it). great set. sorry i don't have more to say, i just know i totally dug it. definitely will catch them again the next time they roll thru town.

at this point, i was descended upon by a few music-scene-wannabes from work (kidding!), some of whom began to provide a demonstration of the mating rituals of the north-american fitted-shirt-wearing suburban professional. fascinating!

headlining was The Whigs, from georgia. apparently, one of rolling stone's "ten bands to watch". 3-man band with an unbelievably large sound. definite strokes, white stripes vibe sometimes. sometimes a bluesy, rolling stones vibe, too. good stuff. coulda done without the 20 minute monologue beforehand, tho. dude was gettin on my noives. dono what he was sayin.

went with batman to Zini's pizza across the street afterwards (after seeing that the mating ritual was becoming frenzied). this will have to be a regular stop for me now after dada shows. nothin hits the spot at 2 in the mornin like a great slice of pizza, and they have that there.

was gonna go on about the life-affirming human interactions that went on, but i'm sober now, so i'll spare myself the embarrassment. but there were many examples of how positive human interaction can be its own form of therapy (who knew?). from the kindness of relative strangers, who make the effort to engage you in conversation and even pretend to be interested, to the actions of friends helpin a socially-inept brudda out, well, i'll just say it was a night that definitely improved my view of humankind.

told ya it was gonna be gay.

11/16/07 - The Whigs, Wild Sweet Orange, Calhoun

this was a fantastic night, in a lot of ways. music - unbelievable.
interaction with fellow human beings - incredible. pizza - yummy.

so much to say, but it'll have to wait til tomorry (er, later today).
get ready fer some really gay shit, tho.

...a peacebone got found in a dinosaur wing...

Sunday, November 11, 2007

11/10/07 - Bridges and Blinking Lights, Red Monroe, MATAS

went to RGRS to see B and BL and red monroe and MATAS. buddy joe showed up too.

first up was matthew and the arrogant sea and i loved em. totally down-tempish and folky and mellow, but with a twist and i loved the songs. one electric guitar, one acoustic, plus trombone (always like that) , plus dude on floor with gadgets. totally loved the sound, great vocals on lead, love the trombone and the effects, great songs, wouldve bot the cd but joe beat me to it. wnated to talk to the guys afterwards, but they seeem to have split right after. oh well - next time.

next up was george neal - not hte whole band, just him, i'm afraid. just one dude with his acoustic. very angry, he seemed sometimes. sorry, i didn't hear much of it - was too busy tryin to convince joe about my shorter-than-normal people theory about denton, of which there was ample evidence. he didnt seem to buy it, tho. i'm not sayin there's anythin wrong with that - short gals make me ho-ney, i'm just sayin it's weird, is all.

third was red monroe, and first i have to say that eric steele has the hottest fuckin girlfriend on the planet. saw her at the cavern last week too and thats enough about that. second i can say forget what i said last week - this was an awesome performance. how was it so different from teh cavern show i do not know, but it was. did they do more songs from cd #1? carolina cig, a return, and they closed with shotgun heart/fingertips, which just fuckin slayed me. lotsa people up front dancin like fools added to the atmosphere. twas awesome - definitely takin a liking to the newer stuff, too. some really great songs on that new cd. wanted to talk to eric afterwards, too, but he seemed to have gone the way of the MATAS guys - nowhere to be found.

last was bridges and blinking lights. man, they had some great songs. many people on the stage, upwards of 7 or so at some times, even a steel guitar or some shit at one point. fantastic songs, but i have one complaint - the lead vocals. either he was havin an off night, or the mix wasn't right, but every goddam song would start off great, then when he would come in it would just lay a turd. sort of a glen frey type voice - nice but softish or somethin. he seemed to be tryin to belt it out but nothin was comin out. again - fantastic songwriting and musicianship. had some overly-loud and obnoxious goddam friends in the audience that i was wantin to pelt with rocks and garbage, but hey thats not their fault. would definitely like to check out again to see if 1st impression is correctamundo, as fonzi would say.

overall, a very nice night. and only 5 bucks to boot.


Sunday, November 4, 2007

11/3/07 - Demigs, Cut*off, Gunship

went to andy's so tony could get his demigs fix. he was desingnated driver. woohooo!! lookout! BLARCH!!

walked around the square afore the shew cuz tony's such a bitch about that whole open container thing. man i love the square, why it's so magical! tony dancin on joe p denton's grave, shame on him

checked out basement of andy's - didn't even kno it was there. very nice, and the bathroom was very functional i should say. no cover, heh heh! doorman told us that theres gonna be an upstairs VIP area soon at andy's. much speculation about what will happen up there. mebbe i'll finaly be able to get jason and david to come out!!

first band was the gunship from norman oklahoma. 3-man band, and they definieltely fall in th category of too-messed-up-to-evaluate-properly-but-i fuckin-loved-em. don't remember much except waltzing matilda song, but i loved their set. definite greenday moments. tk bot the cd. i talked to lead sanger, who wasn't exactly personable, but hey.

next! the cut*off, from frot worth. many people in this band, upwards of 5 or 6. keyboardist supposedly very well hung, for youladies. some really great tunes, some just OK, seemed like therre were a lot of covers (??)

last was the demigs, who tony is totally gay for. recognized a lot of songs from tehir first cd, thot there would be a lot of new material since they'tre workin on new album ,but didn't hear it. still very good, but lead vox got lost in a lot of the songs.

tony saw hot blonde blow chunks all over gunship's amp box. said it looked like cranberry sauce. rock-n-roll, huh??

shiow didnt get done til damn near 2:00. how does that happen with only 3 bands?? thank baby jesus for the time change, eh? why i'll be right as rain in the mornin


Friday, November 2, 2007

11/1/07 - White Rabbits, Red Monroe, Record Hop, Burning Hotels

Went to the Cavern on a thursday night - never seen lowest greenville that dead, but there was actually a decent crowd at the cavern.

First up was the Burning Hotels from Ft Worth - 4-man, 2 guitars (mostly). guitar work sometimes reminded me of U2, songs sometimes reminded me of Radiant. all 3 guitarists sang at some point, sometimes all together (love that), great interplay between vocalists, nice harmonies. noticed the drummer workin overtime back there, trickin it up, great job (i don't normally notice the drummer). closed w/ cover. some really nice songs. would definitely see again.

Next up was Record Hop from denton (who i'd never seen before, despite all my trips over there), and holy shit were they good - fuckin incredible, on a totally different level. 4-man (no keys) - just dirty, grungy, bluesy, raw, the kind of stuff that just grips you by the balls, pulls you in, and doesn't let go. the word that kept coming to mind - visceral. this is not the kind of stuff i usually listen to, but damn, was i sold on these guys (and gal). speakin of that, i usually don't care for the female lead vocalist (in a rock band), but ashlee absolutely destroyed my bias on that front. fantastic set - wanted it to go on all night. definitely look forward to catching them again.

Third was Red Monroe, the band that was the main reason i had gone to the show ( i had yet to catch them since their second cd release). their first cd is easily one of my favorites out of all the cd's from local bands that i've accumulated over the last year, so i was looking forward to hearing the new stuff. i have to say, tho, that the new songs just didn't grab me like the old ones. the new songs share the same jangly guitars and whine-shout vocals, but they just seemed to be missing the hook or groove that i came to love from the first cd. it's probably because i'm much more familiar with the old songs, but whenever they played a song from the first cd, it just seemed like it was infinitely better. for some reason, the same vocal stylings that i dug on the first cd grated on my nerves on all the new songs. i don't understand that, but that's what i felt. still plan on gettin the new cd.

headlining was White Rabbits from NYC, who showed (in my opinion) why they deserve the hype (they've been on letterman). these guys are highly skilled songwriters and musicians. 6-man band, usually two drummers (and sometimes a third), giving almost an animal collective feel at some points. really cool songs.

spotted ringo starr in the crowd, i could swear. lotsa sister pants and pointy black shoes, too. seemed like everyone there was either in a band, or a friend of the band.

for the first time in a long time, made it thru the night without "using" the bathroom. yay, me.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

10/27/07 - Hendrick, Comrade, Swirve

met up with joe the boy-toy (not mine, you asses) at club dada. it's always nice to have a fellow music appreciator come out. didn't see amanda, must've gotten there too late.

first up was Swirve, a somewhat experimental instrumental/spoken-word trio from Dallas. Totally dug these guys. one dude on trumpet, a drummer, and a chick who yelled things and cackled into the mic every once in while. lots of filters, effects, loops, etc. Most songs had a totally cool groove - i defy you to keep your body still whilst listening to their stuff. definitely heard some laurie anderson influence in some of the songs, but talked to chris afterwards and he had never heard of her (!!!). geez, i figured every "avant-garde" arteest would know laurie. chris was kind enough to give me their cd - listening to it right now. really cool stuff. love it. he also told me they play the first wednesday night of the month at the absinthe lounge for their open-mic poetry night. hmmm, mebbe i'll expand my artistic horizons... anyhow, check out Swirve if you can. i will definitely be watching their page for new shows.

next up was Comrade, who i've seen before. 6-man band, i'm pretty sure - up to three keyboard players at once (!). some really nice pop, but i just kept waiting for them to start rockin out, and they never really did. most songs flowed along nicely, but when they'd get to the spot where you expect them to just start wailing away, they'd just keep on at the same level. don't get me wrong, they were some nice songs, but at a live show, you generally want some high-energy rockin at some point (well, at least i do).

last was Hendrick, who i've also seen before. also a 6-man, with 3 guitarists (nice!). the first time i saw them, their set was marred by way too many covers - a stevie wonder, a radiohead, and one sappy 80's-era love song. since then, apparently, they've written quite a bit, since i didn't notice one cover the whole set. thank gawd. first half of set was really great, high-energy guitar-led pop. great voice on lead - nice range, including falsetto (my thom yorke bias). have to say, second half wasn't quite as good. as soon as lead switched from guitar to keys, the momentum slowed quite a bit. still, some nice songs, and i think i remember that the last song or two picked it up again (when he switched back). overall, a pretty nice set, and i wouldn't hesitate to trek out to see them again.

then, we were unexpectedly treated to a special guest appearance by Sarah Jaffe, nicely complemented by the lead from comrade and a drummer. she played i think four or five songs, til the sound man said hey that's enough, we got a long day tomorrow (it was past two by then). loved her voice, and "two intangibles" gave me chills. wouldn't mind catching a full set sometime, especially when i'm not about to fall asleep on my feet.

pretty decent crowd there - i think hendrick has a pretty good following. went to cafe brazil afterwards to chill out and grab a bite. nice end to the night.

Friday, October 26, 2007

10/25/07 - Parata, Sean Kirkpatrick (updated)

Went to RGRS to see Sean K and Parata.

i apologize in advance - this report will not be up to the usual standards (hah!), due to a few factors, mainly related to the firewater (no, not the club).

New Science Projects - one man in army jacket and WWII helmet, with acoustic blues (?) guitar and tambourine on the floor, upon which he would stomp now and again. couldn't tell if he was special needs or trippin massively, at one point held up a piece of paper and said, see - my friend made me a picture drawn in his own blood! so is this performance art, i wondered? during one song, he started wandering around the crowd, shout-singing in peoples faces. dude had talent, could play the geetar, but there was a lot of violent shouting going on. but then he would stop down and play a nice acoustic song with pretty vocals and some nice picking.
very interesting, i'll say that.

gutterth guys in back screaming after every song - yeaaaaaahhh!! annoying.

Silk Stocking - gal on keybd, dude on guitar - bluesy tunes, howling vocals (i'm sorry, it's around this point that my memory starts getting fuzzy).

sean kirkpatrick - was really looking forward to this, based on what i'd heard on the interweb. sean on keybds, another dude on keybds, drum. all i remember is that it sounded like what you'd expect, based on the myspace page. not exactly hard-rockin, what with just two keyboards and all, but that's what his stuff is. i still plan on gettin his cd.

christened the bathroom.

last was Parata, who i'd seen before and really dug. dono what it was, but i didn't really get into it this time. can't splain why.

60 degrees outside, and the damn ceiling fans were on full blast, freezin my ass off.

four bands to play, and they start at 10?? ridiculous. didn't finish til 1:30-ish, on a weeknight, with a half-hour drive home. couldn't they at least start at 9?

Sunday, October 21, 2007

10/20/07 - Chemistry Set, Phil Marshall, Hundred Inevitables

wow. totally cool night. totally cool. now let me try to remember why.
went to club dada to see chemistry set. picked up tk on the way. had to preternd to be sober in front of his fam. think i pulled it off.

woohoo - found parking spot right on front of dada - like i's royaltry or somethin. wow, beard is at the door, said he was like one day out of icu or somethin. jesus what a tough mother. super nice guy. check out the benefit shew:

listened to phil marshall - from UK, actually heard him before at rockhouse live. fantastic stuff, 4-man band, one acoustic one electric, voice altering tween gravely and falsetto, some great electric guitar work. really nice guitar pop. really dug it. tony bot the cd.

saw amanda there from and now part owner of dada. tony the bitch drags me over to meet her befpre i'm wasted enough but she is super nice. says she loves my blog (??!!?!?!), hloy shit. says "you're adventures in live music?? i thot you'd be some 20-something hipster!". hahahahaa is that an insult or not??? i dono. she was so nice - gave me the jd whittenburg cd (thanks, amanda, i don't think i said that!), we talked aboot the music scene and bloggers a bit, it was so totally cool. she said i was on the list at the door since i was linked off her page - holy shit ami actually sort of part of teh scene now?? too cool. way too cool. wish i could remember the whole conversation (maybe tomorrow). jesus i think i said somethin about a midlife crisis or some shit. how pathetic.

then saw the hundred inevitables out of dallas. have to admit - first song, wasn't so sure - thot, this is your lead vocalist? are you kidding me? pretty weak start, but got much stronger as the set went on. 4-man, with lead sometimes on keybds, sometimes just singin. great pop songs. nice backing vocals from guitarist. at one point looked at tony and said, am i wasted or is this really great? he said they were great, so there you go. would definitely like to see again.

i absolutely love dada. deep ellum, i know, but i like that place so mcuh better than lower greenville, where there's so many fuckin cops you think you're only one stumble away from gettin busted or towed or filmed by fuckin avi adelman. plus dada has that fantastic outdoor patio where you can chill between sets and listen to yer buddy's philisophical ramblings about frequencies and resonances and shit. such a great place.

pretty sparse crowd there, however. mebbe everyone was at the carter benefit show, i dono. all the bands gave it their all, tho, i'll say that.

last was the chemistry set, and i have to admit that i've lost all ability to be objective about them - i fuckin love this band. they could have the shittiest set ever, and i would love it, cuz i know and love all the songs. their songwriting is phenomenal, i dono what else to say. buy the cd, you'll see. such a notch above the rest.

talked to meredith (keybds) afterwards, and she was sweet enough to front me their first cd. watched tk fail Wingman 101 miserably as he talked to her aboot all the things they had in common, like drawing schlongs and such.

now it is sleepy time...

Sunday, October 14, 2007

10/13/07 - Timeline Post

semi-drunken trip report - look out

went to andy's in denton hom eof the infamous squishy squishy, but alas not much tonight

buncha creepy characters on teh square - black trenchcoat-wearin muthers hanginf out on the courthouse steps

saw exeter from auston - pretty damn good, i thought, though i did see them at the peak of my inebriatedness (maybe not actually, since i kept on). first half of set remionded me of hard radiohead sonmgs. seconf half, not so much but still prety good. 4-piece, btw - no keybd. free ep, i got one. enjoyed the set, i did.

kept smellin corned beef. croned beef corned beef. what's up with tthat?

woman stepped on my toes (wearin sandals). all over me apologizin but unfortunately she was OLDER THAN ME!!!

way to go auburn, beat those fuckin hillybilly arkansas fags

up next was revolution of kings. 3-piece i think. meh. lead had big GIANT head with dreds and glasses. totally genero alt rock. pushed the ear plugs in a bit further.

went otuside between sets and met a guy sittin on a bench wth head in hands. i said i bet you drank too much, he said yeah - 10 shots of tequila, and he was the designated driver. hehe heh. told him to go puke. his buddy came out and talked aboot takin a duke and usin newspaper for tp. we all agreed that was pretty pathetic.

wells were $2.25. bartender shorted me a fiver, tho. shite.

blue cheese faggot spotted (inside joke).

last was timeline post - ok, i guess - better than rev of kings. why do i have a prejudice against big heavy guy leads with long hair and giant beeards that look at the floor the whole time? couldn't hear vocals much. pretty good, but just didin't get into it. wouldn't object to hearing again, but wouldn't make the drive just for 'em.

listened to red monroe on way home (first album) - now there's some good stuff

Saturday, October 6, 2007

10/6/07 - 1000 MFH

went to firewater to support my buddy chris batman bender and his band 1000 Miles From Home. only one other guy from work showed up - where were you, bitches!?! had to get loaded before i got there cuz i can't afford to drink there. stage set up outside - pretty damn nice. lots of punkass bitches in straight-brim ball caps cocked to the side. that's firewater, eh?

Elocation - such the typical firewater band. if you've ever been there, you know what i mean - lead singer who doesn't play, spiked hairdo, grabs mic with both hands and emotes painfully, screams a lot bent over. definitely played way too long.

1000 Miles from Home - definitely NOT the typical firewater band. OK, so these guys don't fit into my favored sub-genre, but seriously - if you're into modern alt rock, and you haven't given these guys a shot, you really should. Check them out live if you can, it's much better than the cd or myspace - they've improved greatly over the last year or so (partly due to the addition of a second voice (in my opinion, but i have a thing for harmonies)). they've also added a fantastic drummer (and I don't usually notice the drummer). these guys play a slew of thoughtfully-crafted modern rock songs, so much better than most of the bands you typically hear at firewater. despite my usual attitude towards bands of this genre, i can truthfully say i really enjoy their shit.

left after that. was hoping to shoot down to pastime to catch sean kirkpatrick's set, but my buddies in elocation screwed that up for me by playing for-f-ing-ever. tried to scare up some fun on the way home, but no one was up for it. an early night, then.

and so the search begins for a sunday show...

Monday, October 1, 2007

9/30/07 - Do Make Say Think

convinced myself I couldn't miss the DMST show at Hailey's. That's what I get for drinkin in the afternoon. $14 cover - yikes.

History at Our Disposal - some interesting experimental tunes, some not so much (was he trying to sing out of tune? couldn't tell). OK.

Do Make Say Think - instrumental band from Ontario; horns, sax, guitar, violin, machines, drums. some really beautiful, sprawling, orchestral songs. some I couldn't wait to be over. wasn't really feelin' it after a while - left early.

btw, what's up with denton? must be somethin in the water, cuz there seems to be an unusually large percentage of short people there - very bizarre (not the first time I've noticed that).

Sunday, September 30, 2007

9/29/07 - Paul Banks, Last Gasp

started out at lucky's roadhouse again, this time the joint was empty (no more $.25 drinks, eh?). went back to car to, uh, fetch something and stepped in ankle-deep mud pit behind lucky's. in sandles. shee-ut. got to use bathroom at cavern for somethin besides pukin', tho. heh heh. joe finally showed up. missed first band - no loss, based on their myspace/purevolume. went back and forth from cavern to lucky's between bands, watchin mr. q make time with ultra-wasted a&m drop-out chick (that's right, darlin, i graduated in '98) who's name we forgot but had bachelorette-party gal friends with s&m gear. how does he do it? must be his stylin' shirts. anyways, the show:

paul banks - this man is a musical genius. listen to his cd - i dare you to disagree. the next rufus wainwright, i tell ya. amazing voice, as i've said before. fantastic songwriting. wish he had closed with "color", instead of sam cooke/beatles/bowie medley. both songs show off his pipes, i just think it's best to close with your own material, especially when it's so goddam strong.

the last gasp - 2nd time to see. excellent, as before. loved the harmonies from the keyboardist. really enjoyed the set. met christian afterwards - super nice guy, gave me their demo cd.

a pacific model - 3rd time to see. some songs in definite radiohead territory, some more ordinary. powerful lead vox. Cure cover - bleh.

pretty good crowd at the cavern, which means the usual annoying louder-than-the-band chatter and scuse-me scuse-me as people try to get to the bar. was entertained by preternaturally short dude with pony tail and goatee makin time with the ladies, or was that his 50-something sugar daddy boyfriend behind him pretending to groove to the music? i don't know, i should be nicer.

Monday, September 24, 2007

9/22/07 - Fishboy, etc.

OK, so I didn't make it to the City Tavern after all to see The Chemistry Set. I wasn't into the other two acts, plus I found out about the free show at J&J's. Why do they keep their shows such a secret, btw? No website, nothing on pegasusnews - I found out about it in the comments section of weshotjr (from fishboy, actually). Anyways:

Cartwheels in Central Park - one-man band: dude with a bass guitar and a Mac. nice songs, actually, for what he was working with. talked too much. kept forgetting his own lyrics. but not bad.

Satin Hooks - 3-man band from Houston. nice straight-ahead protest rock - said something about the federal reserve and new orleans or something. high energy. good stuff.

The Dimes - four-man from Houston. Dug these guys a lot. Kind of The Strokes meets Arcade Fire? Great music, couldn't really hear the vocals.

Fishboy - enjoyable, fun nerd-pop. have to get used to his voice.

this was my first time a J&J's - nice place, but not exactly a first-rate sound system, by any means. whaddaya expect for free, eh?

Sunday, September 16, 2007

9/15/07 - Chemistry Set

OK, got pretty messed up at lucky's roadhouse before-hand (25 cent drinks!), so I missed alice rose and pretty much zest of yore. sorry, dudes, have to catch you next time. but chemistry set was incredible. where was the fucking crowd??? godammit, i just don't get it. incredible set - pilot kiss my karma, world in reverse, million dollar day - jesus these guys are good. bought the cd, finally (thanks, tk!).

finally, a good night at the cavern, but only because the crowd was thin. went back to lucky's afterwards to sober up - too funny, watchin 5'2" vanilla ice in sunglasses dirty dance with some britney spears wannabee's.

chemistry set next week at city tavern - be there, shitheads. i know i will.

Sunday, September 9, 2007

9/8/07 - Stavely, The Orange, Great Raven

omigod, i hate the effin' cavern. spune - please, fortheloveofgod, find somewhere else.

nearly came face to face with the barkin dog Avi Adelman - walked by as he filmed a car being towed away. jesus christ, dude, find a hobby.

Timothy Moffett - one-man band: drum machine and some sort of electronic guitar/keyboard contraption. reminded me of jean-michael jarre's stuff - very 80's.
Stavely - 4-man, all with X's on their hands. amazing stuff. great voice on lead - a real natural. loved all the songs, and not one cover to be found. CD coming soon, they tell me. looking forward to seeing them again. made the night for me.
The Orange - 5-man, plus mannequins. hard to describe the music style, just good-timey jangly pop rock. didn't see evidence of the whole psychedelic thing, myself. high-energy lead - even knocked the lights out. lead vocals a tad reedy, even a little emo? 3rd or 4th song in was a top 40 cover - ugh.
Great Raven - 5-man, plus chick backup singer. lead wore goofy beret/newsboy hat and pained expression. some songs overtly bluesy (SRV-ish). pretty good, just didn't connect. couldn't get past the stupid-ass hat (kidding).

Friday, September 7, 2007

Rant cancelled

I was going to rant about the flakiness of the live music scene, how I've been screwed countless times by bad information or just lazy venue website dudes, how more people might come out if shows were more user-friendly to the workin' man, etc. etc. etc., but I realized it's stupid and pointless, so nebermind.

Thursday, September 6, 2007

9/5/07 - Parata, Glen Farris, Dust Congress

Went to another free night at Rubber Gloves:

Dust Congress - i've seen him before - one-man band (guitar/banjo, kick-drum, high-hat, etc.). amazing how much sound one man can generate on his own. this time, he added a 4-mallet marimba player and a trumpet player. nice additions, but more instruments means more things to keep in tune and together, and that was a problem here and there with the trumpet player. nice songs, definite leonard cohen/loudon wainwright vibe. voice a bit thin and strained (he even apologized for it).

Glen Farris - really looked forward to this, after hearing the haunting, chill-inducing stuff on his myspace page. wondered how he would duplicate that live, and alas, he did not. Just him and his guitar (and harmonica). definitely a talented musician and songwriter, but in the end, it was just another dude with his acoustic (although a very talented dude).

Parata - these guys were fantastic. two guitars, bass, keyboard and drums. fairly complex songs - lots of tempo and mood shifts. everyone in the band had to keep on their toes, and they did. great songwriting. lead vocals a bit reedy, but good enough. really enjoyed the set - will be watching their page for their next gig.

Old Canes - cancelled "a couple days ago". rant to follow.

decent crowd once again. two stumbling drunks. way too much smoke. AC blower a real distraction during the quieter acts.

Tuesday, September 4, 2007

9/3/07 - RTB2, Hardin..., Childlike Fear, Florene

Went to the first night of Rubber Gloves' Free Week. godblessem, they must know how broke I am right now (long story).

Florene - totally cool. two guys, four keyboards, one guitar, and a mac. no vocals, per se. sort of a panda bear/mogwai vibe, really nice songs, would love to see them again.
A Childlike Fear - OK. guitar, bass, drum. Liked some of the music, but didn't care for the croaky, strained vocals
Hardin Sweaty... - entertaining as usual. not really my thing, musically - it's a bit harsher than i normally like, but the sense of humor and energy make up for it
RTB2 - one guitar, drums and tracks. great pipes on lead. some real heart-felt bluesy tunes

decent crowd for a monday night. froze my arse off in there - will bring parka next time.

Sunday, September 2, 2007

9/1/07 - Chemistry Set, JDW, Shibboleth

Hailey’s - 9/1/07 Walked to SHQ first to check out the art show - very, uh, interesting. lots of boobies.

Anyways, the show at Hailey's:

Shibboleth - nice instrumentals, some keyboard-led, some guitar-led. very catchy.
JD Whittenburg - great tunes, loved the harmonies (amanda from boca tinta), lead vox a bit nasal
The Chemistry Set - fantastic as usual. "world in reverse" an amazing song - someone must be a radiohead fan. great set.

the sound mix was, as is all too common, lousy. it always amazes me that the sound guy, who's standing about 10 feet away from me, can't hear what everyone else can - the backup vocals can't be heard, the drum's too loud, or whatever. very frustrating.

hailey's was damn near empty - where was everybody? I figured since school had started, crowds would be picking up, but nope. oh well, they missed a great show.

Monday, August 20, 2007

8/18/07 - Airline, Latture, Calhoun, Chemistry Set

method entertainment all-day event - got there at 7:30

salute - G southern rock (not my thang, tho), 3-man, greasy-long-haired ball cap bassist
greater good - VG, 6-man, where have these guys been?
chemistry set - awesome
calhoun - also awesome, david herman look-a-like lead (flickerstick guitarist)
latture - incredible, piano-led indie pop, awesome back-up vox, great violin; from little rock
jonathan tyler & the northern lights - G, but southern rock again
airline - VG, not quite as good as others

best show in a long time. 5 incredible bands in one night. hope method does it again soon.

8/17/07 - Tha Bracelets, Man Factory, etc.

Red Pony Clock - 10-man band, horns aplenty, oboe (!), couldn't hear vocals well. OK happy psych-pop
ZipZipZapZap - OK punk pop
The Man Factory - OK
Tha Bracelets - eh

this was a perfect example of a show I didn't like mainly because the type of music being played just wasn't my thing. all of the bands were pretty good, from what i remember (although the number of tequila shots i had definitely impaired my cognitive abilities - thanks, tony).

Sunday, August 12, 2007

Show listing, 12/06 to 8/07

Here's a listing of the shows I have been to in the last 8 months, with a few comments thrown in here and there. Don't expect incredible insight or music-critic-speak - I just know what I like. If I say I don't like a band, I'm not saying they're bad, just that they're not my thing (at least, in most cases). One's taste in music is a very personal matter, eh?

You'll notice a lot of these bands just have a simple note about whether or not I liked them. I hope to elaborate a little bit more in the future, but I originally just used this list to remember who I would want to see again.

Some abbreviations:

G = good
VG = very good
RH = radiohead
WOS - wall of sound (not sure if that's even the right term)

You'll also notice that I sometimes throw in a reference to some distinguishing feature of a band ("bald-headed lead" or "chick bass player"). That's nothing more than my way of helping me remember the band (my memory of these gigs isn't always perfect, ifyouknowhatimean).

I'd love to hear your comments...

(forgive the awful formatting, I can't get this thing to do what I want)

Hailey's 12/20/06
Whitman G
Stella Rose G, 3-piece, chick bass player
Millicent Friendly G, some down-tempo
Lord Henry VG, Pete Townshend bass player, short set

Firewater 1/6/07
Wumb G (Tool knock-off)
King Zero OK
Venture no
Moving Atlas G
Deaf Pedestrians G (15 beers ago)

Firewater 1/13
Paperface G
Kessler OK
Vehicle Reason VG (great harmonies)
Miser VG (good show, anyway. music OK)

Hailey's 1/20
O'Brother OK (nice sound, bad singer)
Comrade OK (nice sound, slightly weepy)
Broadcast Sea OK (talk-singing, good sound)
Pompeii Awesome, beautiful, bot cd
Dignan G
New Frontiers VG, some mellow acoustic-y, some WOS
Quiet Company VG; 3-man, kybds, some WOS
Gazelles no

Firewater 1/27
Justin brown translation good
Anagen ok
Green river ordnance good
Josh goode band omigod no (nearly got my ass kicked shouting down the band)
Manny trevin ditto

Granada 2/3
Smile Smile nice acoustic rock, harmonies
Faux Fox WTF? no
The Crash That Took Me Good sound, not-so-good singer
Black Tie Dynasty good, but so 80's

Rockhouse Live 2/10
Phil Marshall VG
Social Jab G (but not my thing)
Miser G (peaked early)

Secret HQ (2/17)
Stumptone awesome, some trippy, some acoustic, trumpet, WOS
Trumpet Assassins 2 trumpet players with filters, effects; cool at first, grew old quickly

Andy's 2/17
2 month reunion whiney emo
Falling View ok emo
Less is More whiney emo

SHQ 2/24
Harry has a Head Like a Ping Pong Ball thrash funk, not my thing
Zanzibar Snails droning with squeaky sax, no
Great Tyrant didn't wait around

Andy's 2/24
Trebuchet OK rock
Paris Green spastic lead singer, rock; no
Upside flying V, heavy rock; no

Hailey's 2/25
Bosque Brown beautiful haunting folk, violin, bass, drums
Tacks, the Boy Disaster keyboard-driven pop indie rock; some great songs, some OK
Happy Bullets bald-headed lead, trumpet/trombone, good rock

Club Dada 3/3, buncha bbws not listening
Soular excellent RH rock
Radiant excellent, long set
Hendrick OK; started strong, faded quickly; stevie wonder, RH, unknown sappy covers

Rockhouse Live 3/10
1000 miles from home good, started to sound the same after awhile
Uncrowned ok

Hailey's 3/13
Ra Ra Riot VG; violin, cello, bought CD, from syracuse, audio problems
Red Monroe VG; awful audio problems, ended set early
The Changes G; nice pop rock
Cloud Cult VG; sophisticated alt rock, cello, violin, painters!

The Bone 3/15
The Future Unlived bluesy texas rock no

The Cavern 3/17; st patty's day assholes, valet assholes, good sound
Plain Jane Automobile Exc RH stuff - bought EP
Hourly Radio G - lousy vocals, tho (strained, whiney)

Rubber Gloves 3/18 empty, $5.25 double
Phantom Family Halo drum set up front, two-tone singing
Narrator Mets shirt, ok, "all the tired horses in the sun…"
Chin Up Chin Up "beds are burning" vocals (very annoying)

DoubleWIde 3/24 very smoky, $8 dbl
Tre Orsi G,
short set
Dove Hunter G
Hogpig G, Hard Toadies

SHQ 3/31
Dust Congress One man band, guitar, accordian, banjo, bass drum, highhat - good bluesy country
100 Damned Guns 6-piece - good country

Andy's 3/31
Telegraph Canyon VG folky rock
Million Year Dance Gandhi lead singer - VG, bought CD (which was terrible, btw)
oso closo big guy lead on keyboard, G rock - peter hated

Cavern 4/7 bad night
Tober Omi OK unusual rock, free cd
Black Lights don't know
Tame Tame and Quiet don't know

Liquid Lounge 4/14 $8 cover, $7.50 dbl, good sound
Three Fantastic Excellent; Jim Morrison frontman, very original
Heights OK; dream-rock WOS, weak vocals
The Ruse VG; U2-style
Twilight no-shows

The Cavern 4/21
Umbrella Army boring, Mac and keyboards
Kunek good musically, never grabbed me, long-haired dude on keyboards
Grand Serenade good singer, never grabbed me
Radiant good as usual

Hailey's 4/22
A Northern Chorus canadians, cello and violin, 3-part harmony, VG
A Twilight Sad scottish, atonal vocals
Aereogramme scottish, weepy quiet/loud WOS, VG

Hailey's 4/28
Evangelicals great sound, annoying atonal vocals, red lights, smog machine
Katie Eastburn keybd and kick drum, unique ballads
Sunset Rubdown very original/unique, yelpy vocals, VG

Firewater 5/5
Chalklign G; some screamo
Clearcut G; tapdancin bullhorn frampton
Seven Story Drop pretty boy crap
Venture eh
Edgewater screamo crap, vocals weak

Rubber Gloves 5/10
The Tah-Dahs G; Funny lead, kept tuning guitar, "Lord don't let me down"
Alex Delivery Experimental instrumental (mostly), dude on floor with laptop, japanese gal on keybds, some good grooves
Frog Eyes Canadians, epileptic meatloaf singer, choppy vocals, chick drummer, didn't like style

Green Elephant 5/12
Levi Smith whiney lead, but good folky rock
Transcenders no idea, remember some good songs

Curtain club 5/19 excellent sound system; $10 cover, $3.75 R&C
1000 miles from home 1st time I really enjoyed show; 2nd singer/guitar a real plus; left after that

Granada 5/26 won tickets (weshotjr)
sir richard bishop? very good classical guitar, but boooooring
animal collective VG; original, some great songs, some awful

Hailey's 5/31
The Dodos very good, finger-pickin guitar + drums
Theater Fire one guy missing, 2 trumpets, good songs, but low energy

Hailey's 6/8
tammany hall machine excellent, bot cd, keybds, trombone
lalaland 3-piece, hot bass player, VG
peel skinny dude in dress (ugly dress contest), OK

Rockhouse Live 6/9 $9 dbls, $6 shots
Household Gods TV w/ candles, house band, OK
1000 miles from home G; much improved
opus flux OK

Hanks 6/14
Opus Flux tailored set to Hank's crowd - not good

Club Dada 6/20 $5 cover, $10 dbl
Quiet Company loved it
A Pacific Model good, curly-haired big guy lead, some trip-rock

Hailey's 7/1
Darcy G pop, nasally vocals, lead in 3-piece suit
David Ramirez Band VG piano-led pop
Andrew McKinney sappy pop, covers

cavern 7/6
headstream first show, liked it, free cd, big fro bass player
silver cities G rock, squeaky vocals
seneca hawk 3-man, VG rock, peter bot cd, indian drummer

shq 7/7
teenage bees 2-man, punk-ish, funny (get your mitts off my dick)
aimless never miss excellent; 4-man, chick keybd, projector visuals, bot both EPs

RGRS 7/7 $5.50 dbls
Hardin Sweaty... punkish at first, hilarious stuff (robocop, wedding cake, etc.), great show
Happy bullets not as good as I remembered, didn't hear most of it (upstairs)
Voot Cha Index G poppy rock

hailey's 7/13
the separation exc pop, harmony
robert gomez really pretty, accordian (P. slavens), baritone
starlight mints decent psych pop, vocals a little fey

hailey's 7/15
hogpig G as usual
mouth of the architect exc heavy RH music, long songs, but screaming death-metal vocals
made out of babies shrieking chick lead

rockhouse live 7/20
otenki OK
1000 MFH G
Opus Flux G

cavern 7/21
Paul Banks awesome voice, 1/2 acoustic set, rufus-like, great stuff
Last Gasp VG alt rock/pop, chick on kybds
A Pacific Model 3rd time to see, G

cavern 7/25
missed Pompeii - start time moved up!

hailey's 8/1
demigs VG, bot cd
new frontiers Excellent
dear and the headlights VG, dashboard, bot cd

cavern 8/3 full of drunken frat boys throwin up horns
smile smile nice
mark mallman G; 2-man, synth and drums + tracks, spaz lead
redballs G; not my thing
valentines same

club dada 8/4
fulton read OK pop rock, vox got a bit old
frankie 54 last-minute fill-in, solo rockabilly
quiet company VG as usual, bot cd

nokia 8/10 $15 parking, $12 dbl (new record)
rufus wainwright awesome

Why am I doing this?

Real answer: I'm not sure. I must be going thru a "phase", or a mid-life crisis, but right now I can't get enough of listening to live music in the Dallas/Denton area, and I feel compelled to "talk" about it. So here I go:

When I started going to live music shows last year, I really couldn't find a resource to help me decide what show I would like best, given my tastes. Yes, the local music blogs helped somewhat, but they usually only talk about a few acts (and usually not the ones I'm interested in), when there are dozens to choose from in any given week.

I found that the only solution is to scan the listings of upcoming shows on DdCal, weshotjr, and pegasusnews and listen to songs on the bands' myspace pages. I categorize and "grade" all the bands and keep track of them in a spreadsheet (only an engineer, eh?). Also, after each show, I jot down a few notes about each band, so that I remember whether or not I'd want to see them again.

Since last December, I've seen about 150 bands and amassed a decent little database. The following post will be the listing of those shows to date. After that, I'll try and post reviews after each show.

It's important to note - these "reviews" were originally only for my benefit. They reflect my taste only. If you happen to share my taste in music, you might get something out of it. If you're into the music scene in Dallas/Denton, you at least might find it interesting.

What's my taste? My top four: Radiohead, Pink Floyd, Laurie Anderson, and Rufus Wainwright. What would that be - art-rock/pop? with some shoe-gaze thrown in? I don't know, I just know I like it. Favorite "locals"? Pompeii, Red Monroe, Chemistry Set, Calhoun, Quiet Company, New Frontiers, Radiant, Stumptone, Paul Banks... Check out my myspace page for more info:

Again, I will admit, I'm not sure what the point of this is, I just know that I seem to be obsessed with listening to live music, and I'd love to connect with those who feel the same way. If this blog helps me do that in some way, then I'll consider it a success. So please, don't hesitate to comment, email, whatever.

Saturday, August 11, 2007

Who am I?

I'm an engineer in North Texas who recently discovered a love for the local live music scene (big D & little d). I spend as much time as I can in dingy, smoke-filled bars listening to whatever sounds good to me - I find it very therapeutic. Makes it hard to get up and go to work early in the morning, but hey, sacrifices must be made.

I won't pretend to be a music critic, so don't expect in-depth analyses. I just plan to talk about the shows I go to, the bands I see, the venues, and the crowds.