Monday, December 15, 2008

12/13/08 - Siren City, Fantastic Circus

went to andy's for the 2nd week in a row. and this time, get this - i had a date, i shit you not.

first up was Fantastic Circus, from Tyler. interesting, very interesting. but not always in a good way. strange melange of heavy metal riffs and calliope-like music (thus the 'circus' moniker?). mi compadre said it sounded like 5 different bands were playing at once. next up was Sounds Under Radio from austin. was looking forward to hearing them, based on what i heard on myspace, but alas, 'twas not to be. too busy re-injuring my tailbone in my car.

last up was Siren City. uh, not really my thing. pretty standard modern rock, with a touch of screamo thrown in. i began to regret not having my earplugs, as that kind of stuff can get pretty hard to take in a small place like andy's. all in all, tho, quite a memorable night. ;)

12/06/08 - the cut*off, beauxregard, the demigs

went to andy's in denton, wif muh buddy tk

the demigs, who tk is now even more totally gay for, started things off. pretty good, i thought. tk liked the new alt-countryish stuff they played. he spent a lot of time beatin down chris demiglio after the set, setting up some sort of after-hours rendevous at a recording studio or somethin. he is so gay for them...after the set, we wandered around the square. public property was attacked, santa was saved, trees were climbed, and tailbones were cracked. good times.

next up was Beauxregard, who i've seen many times. always enjoy their set. good stuff, and very well done. added bonus of a guitar-shaped pinata, which spewed some much-needed munchies. first time to see front-man J Quincy in something other than his usual all-white outfit. last up was the cut*off. seen these guys many times also - see previous write-ups. great stuff, as usual. always get "it's a beautiful life we live" stuck in my head for days after hearing them. went to fuzzy's taco shop afterwards - damn good stuff. back at home, someone decided to fertilize my lawn with fish tacos. good times...

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

12/3/08 - Robert Gomez, Matthew and the Arrogant Sea

went to dan's on wednesday night to catch MATAS and robert gomez.

matthew and the arrogant sea was up first, after returning from their recent tour. you know these guys are one of my favorite local bands. i cannot stress enough how much i love this band. see previous write-ups to find out why. check out their new release, "family family family meets the magic christian". you will thank me.
the robert gomez band was up next. i'd seen robert and crew a couple years ago and loved it, and wednesday night, i remembered why. that dude can write some absolutely amazing songs. he had a four-piece band that night, including keys, a french horn and a cello player. beautiful, haunting, phenomenal stuff. wish he would play around here more often.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

11/28/08 - Backsliders, Scott McCurry Band, Escort Service, Doug Adams

still tryin to catch up, so - short and sweet

went to the lakewood bar and grill, wif knuckles and the les savy fan. knew it would be a rough show for me, but knuckles is a big backsliders fan, and i couldn't find anything else.

$4.50 for a vodker/cran. oo!oo, LBG.

doug adams was up first - solo acoustic. nice voice, nice songs. too many covers. escort service - omg, i really don't like these guys. seen them three or four times now (only because they happened to be on the bill), and they get harder to take every time.

scott mccurry band - pretty good stuff, sorta bluesy pop. enjoyed it at first, but holy shite did they go on and on. they must've thot they were headlining. swear to gawd it must've been an hour and 15 minutes. started drivin me crazy, what with all the covers they had to throw in to go that long. ended up leavin, sittin in my car, waiting for knuckles to text me that they were done.

the backsliders were the actual headliners. seen them multiple times. not really a big fan. i recognize that they are very good at what they do, but i'm just not interested in the overdone rock-n-roll hyperbole any more. just my opinion, mind you. got to see the LSF in action, plying his craft on unsuspecting females ('though he was getting some stiff competition from a gordon keith look-alike). knuckles was busy getting hit on by the over-40 BBW demographic. good times.

11/22/08 - David Garza, Sunward, Rahim Quazi, Bryan Wakeland, Morning Elephant

gettin way behind, gonna keep it short...
went to club dada with tk, a fellow Sunward fan.

morning elephant - with clay pendergrass and manya from blue petal, although they played most of the set without manya. tk fell in love with the oldster guitar player that he said was channeling jerry garcia. were like two completely different bands with and without manya - in fact, the aforementioned guitar player left the stage whenever manya came on - strange, we thot. enjoyed them both, but preferred their sound with manya - i'm a big fan of her voice.
bryan wakeland, "drummer for the polyphonic spree", was up next. wasn't especially captivated. some decent pop, nothing special. his hairdo offended me (kidding!) rahim quazi and the supernaturals - seen them a couple times before. very nicely done folky pop, including horns, which i love. Sunward - one of my favorite local bands (see previous write-ups for massive amounts of gushing). outstanding as usual. love those guys. David Garza - very talented, lots of variety in the set list. enjoyed it. tk made me leave early.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

11/15/08 - I Love Math, The Slack, The Cut*off, Dave Little, Sparklepussy Barbie, Dark Knights of Camelot

headed to dada last saturday to catch salim's showcase. was accompanied (and driven (yes!)) by the Green-Eyed Greek Gal, who had managed to leave her family behind in an attempt to relive her glory days in deep ellum.

i ended up having a pretty rough night, because someone kept force-feeding me drinks (i think she wanted to take advantage of me). so i don't remember a whole lot, but i have some crappy pics, so...

Dark Knights of Camelot from Mississippi started things off. weren't even on the original line-up, but they were a very nice surprise. really liked these guys. 3-man band, high-energy, great tunes. catch them if you up was Sparklepussy Barbie, and ohmygawd, no thank you. 80's electro-synth goth industrial. extremely annoying vocals. not my thing at all. we retreated to the (freezing-cold) patio for some respite. GrEGG kept going on and on about being strong like a bull, but i don't know what she was talking about. it was at this point that things got very fuzzy. i do remember some of dave little's set - i enjoyed that, would like to see him again. very entertaining. apparently, the cut*off played, since i have pics of them. GrEGG confirms, and says she liked them quite a bit - i knew she would - that's her kinda thing, and they are very good.and i think the slack played as well - i have a pic with eric neal in it, and he's in the slack, so...the last band we saw was I Love Math. or i should say, GrEGG saw - i was indisposed. she didnt care for them (thot they were too full of themselves), and since her live-music chops weren't what they used to be, she forced me to leave early.
good times, good times.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

11/8/08 - Frightened Rabbit, Spinto Band, Grassfight

headed to denton saturday night, mainly to catch Frightened Rabbit. very glad i did.

first up was Denton's own Grassfight. not bad. kinda gloomy art rock. very joy-division/interpol-ish. lead vocalist had a hard time keeping on-pitch sometimes. wouldn't mind catching them up was the Spinto Band, from delaware. large band, many people on stage. very high-energy pop. a little too happy for my taste, maybe. don't remember a whole lot, but i know it didn't especially captivate me. Frightened Rabbit headlined, and these guys blew me away. I'd heard a couple songs from them on a podcast and really liked it, but I completely fell in love with them saturday night. these guys are officially my New Favorite Band. what an awesome set - beautiful, soaring, emotional, uplifting. the kind of music that makes your heart sing. absolutely love the lead's voice. was amazed to hear most of the crowd singing along to every song. absolutely outstanding set. check them out - you will thank me.

11/1/08 - RTB2, Escort Service, Mike Graff

ok, so i've gotten a little behind. sue me.

headed to the big brothers/big sisters benefit at the city tavern with the piledriver. couldn't find out too much about the line-up and schedule - there was conflicting information everywhere - and sure enough, got down there at 8 only to find out the felons had already played at 6. screw me. great start to the night. so we went back downstairs to continue drinkin and watch the Tech-Texas game and the beautiful people, of which there were many. became huge texas tech fans - one, because they beat texas, and two, because it was beneficial to do so (what is it about women in soccer uniforms that's so freakin hot?).

while the piledriver held down our position, i stumbled back upstairs and caught Mike Graff playing. Solo electric guitar, plus a drummer. very nice stuff. very talented individual. Back downstairs, i met some very nice guatemalans with very interesting tattoos.

at some point, i went back upstairs to catch a few songs by escort service, if only to confirm my opinion about them. it was. confirmed, that is. last up was RTB2. I've seen these guys quite a few times now, and i always have enjoyed it. the piledriver, however, did not share my enthusiasm, and since it was very late and i actually fell asleep during one of the songs (it seemed like they were playing a lot of slow ones that night), we hit the road. overall, not a great night for live music, but a great night for people-watching/leering

Friday, October 31, 2008

10/26/08 - Locksley, Hymns

ok, went to the HOB pontiac garage on sunday wif a friend who's a huge fan of the Hymns. endured the $10 parking, $14 ticket and $6 drinks cuz you know why. dint bring the camera, arent you lucky, no shitty pics.

doors were at 8:00. got there at 8:30 and somehow missed the first band, Greater Good. WHAT. THE. FUCK?!!?!!! still fucking pissed about that. Hymns were playin when we got there. these guys were really good. sorta bluesy, southern-soft-rockish stuff. very high-energy. most band members looked like they hadn't showered in a couple weeks, you know what i mean. but that's what the chicks dig, you know? maybe we can all learn somethin from that, eh? anyways...fuck. they were good.

locksley headlined. these dudes were pretty damn good, too. very 60's high energy beatles-esque sorta shit. great show. they dont need no help from me. fuck, tom hanks is a fan, so...

that's it.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

10/23/08 - Three Fantastic, The Felons, Fourth Frame

headed to dada once again on thursday night to catch the felons. the les savy fan showed up, too.

was amazed to see a huge crowd there when i walked in - very rare on a weeknight. the crowd was predominantly female, too - even rarer. after a while, though, our initial excitement waned as we used our keen observation skeels and noticed that these gals wouldn't be hookin up with any guys that evenin, IF you know what i mean. then, as the evening wore on, and everyone got socially lubricated, all doubt was removed. the LSF lamented "my powers are useless!". turns out they were all there to support

Fourth Frame (sorry - they don't seem to have a myspace page yet), who had their first show that night. really enjoyed these guys. very catchy pop, sometimes with a reggae feel. The LSF and I agreed - you'd never believe it was their first show - they seemed very polished and confident. very nice. wouldn't mind catching them again.
next up were the felons. you know i've loved the felons for quite a while now, and every time i see them, my opinion gets reaffirmed. i can't say enough about how talented these guys are, how incredible dave's voice is, what great songs they have put together. lookin forward to hearing more and more new stuff from them. for the last two songs, fred joined the band, and i have to admit, it put a smile on my face to see him up there again. 'twas a great finish to a great set.
last up was Three Fantastic, from houston. third time to see these guys. i tell ya, the first half of their set, they had the whole joint jumping, even causin the drunks sittin at the bar to shout "hey who the fuck are you guys?" between songs. but i have to say, the second half, they seemed to lose everyone. seemed like they dialed it back just a tad or somethin, cuz it just started to drag after a while. pretty good stuff, tho - good-timey rock-n-roll, very loungey sometimes, great voice on lead, great guitar playing. just maybe need to re-order the set a bit. freewayland was a highlight, fosho.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

10/16/08 - Bart Davenport, Nervous Curtains, Cocky Americans

another thursday night at Club Dada - good times, good times.

Cocky Americans were up first, and these guys were fantastic. 4-man band: 3 guitars and drums. not the kind of stuff i usually get into - definitely very guitar-intensive, sometimes with a smoldering bluesy southern-rock groove, sometimes more Strokes-like, sometimes with a Doors vibe (but maybe only because Brett's vocal style (which i really dug) reminded me of Morrison sometimes) - but i loved it. very talented musicians, very polished performance, will definitely try to catch them again soon.up next was Nervous Curtains. what else can i say about these guys that i haven't said before? i've gone to see Sean so many times now, my buddies tease me that we must be dating (p.s. i am not gay). all i'll say is - go see this band and check out the new material - you won't be disappointed.Bart Davenport, from california, headlined. some very sugary, super-twee 60's pop - really well done, but not really my thing. did enjoy the harmonies from the gal on tambourine, tho.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

10/9/08 - Mr. Gnome, Menkena, Les Americains

headed to the cavern to catch Mr. Gnome. knuckles came with, and the les savy fan showed up later, being as how his cradle-robbing activities were on hiatus for the night.

Les Americains were up first. i dono, seemed like some pretty generic pop rock. really failed to keep my interest. next up was Menkena, and they were...{yawn}......low-key ........ dreamy ...{yawn}... down-tempo..... ZZzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz
last up was Mr. Gnome, from Cleveland, who i'd heard at club dada back in may. two-piece band (one guitar plus drums, sometimes keys), but with an unbelievable sound. nicole on guitar was amazing, sometimes playing far-out trippy rock, sometimes blistering hard rock (knuckles, the metallica fan, was in heaven). loved her voice - sometimes breathy, sometimes an ear-shattering howl. sam on drums was insane, turning the drum set into an actual instrument, not just a rhythm section. he adding an amazing dimension to the sound, something i don't normally hear from drummers. my only complaint - it seemed like a really short set, but maybe that's because i didn't want it to end. fantastic stuff. don't miss these guys if you have the chance.
oh yeah - did i mention nicole was smokin hot?

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

10/4/08 - The Low Lows, Starhead

had trouble findin a show last weekend, but ended up at hailey's.

first up was Starhead, or at least parts of it (they didn't say one word to the crowd (which was pretty much just me), so i have no idea who was playing and who was missing). 4-piece band that night - one acoustic guitar, one electric, a violin and a pseudo-drummer (he had some shakers, a tambourine, and an ozarka water jug, i shit you not). very nice, low-key, down-tempo, minor-key, dreamy folky stuff. love the soulful violin. nice juxtaposition of the electric with the acoustic. not exactly hard-rockin stuff, but it ain't supposed to be. enjoyed it. next up was The Low Lows, from Austin. 6-piece, including two trumpets and one trombone at times. really well done southern gothic rock sorta stuff. really featured the brass at times, which i love. lead has unique voice - kinda reedy, but not at all unpleasant. really dug it.

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

9/28/08 - The Fratelli's, The Airborne Toxic Event, Electric Touch

headed to the HOB for the first time on sunday to catch airborne toxic event and the fratelli's.
knuckles and the piledriver came with - woo hoo! look out, ladies!

no pics this time - apparently no one takes the "absolutely no cameras" rule seriously, as i was about the only joker in the place to not have one. bouncers didn't care at all, at least until the fratelli's played. weird.

'twas really an awesome night, probably one of the best shows i've ever been to. not that all 3 bands were exactly my taste, but you gotta love a show in a "real" venue, with an actual stage, incredible sound system, and cool light show. but i really think the difference was the crowd - there's just somethin great that happens when the whole crowd gets into it, and they're not afraid to actually move around a bit, or throw their hands up in the air and clap with the band. yea, i know this is old news to you folks that have been to a lot of "big" shows, but it was a revelation to me. i dono, i thot it was just a great vibe that night. maybe it was cuz i was plastered, but i don't think so. (i was getting peppered with some rather salty text messages the whole night, which definitely added to the excitement).

first up was Electric Touch, from austin. absolutely loved these guys. very beatles-esque, i think. bunch of young punks, super-cocky, incredible stage presence, snarly, strutting, doin the whole "usin your guitar as a phallic symbol" thing, all to great effect. wasn't expecting to like these guys, but goddam i did. great set full of fun-time rock-n-roll. about the lead singer's british accent, knuckles says "man, i gotta get me one of them".

next up was the highlight of the night for me - The Airborne Toxic Event, from CA. totally in my wheelhouse - moody, anthemic, beautiful, haunting. i was in heaven. definitely have a weakness for a band with strings. didn't want it to end, couldn't get enough.

headlining was The Fratelli's. i was not necessarily a huge fan of theirs goin in (that's the piledriver), but i absolutely loved their set. very polished, very talented. played an hour and a half, changin guitars every damn song ('sup with that?). no matter - they were great, and the crowd really seemed to know their stuff, which made for a really fun set.

i was prepared to hate the HOB - i'd heard about the security checkpoints, expensive parking, expensive drinks, ticketbastard charges, sterile environment, etc., but i have to say, i loved it there. about the only complaint was the ticket "convenience charges" (what a racket). everything else was no problem - i found a meter right in front, i did my drinkin before i got there, security was no big deal, and it was smoke-free. i'm not givin up my trips to deep ellum or denton any time soon, but i won't hesitate to go back to the HOB either.

9/27/08 - Dead Confederate, Wax Fang, Zest of Yore

ended my (purely metaphorical) boycott of the effing cavern and headed there to catch a couple of post-ACL bands. my buddy josephus was able to stop crying in his beer about the florida loss long enough to show up, too.

and wouldn't you know it, my new buddies in Zest of Yore were the openers. and they was aight. they'll never be a favorite of mine, but i enjoyed a song or two this time. yea, i'm sure it was exactly the same set as that night at hailey's, but for some reason i could tolerate it more - less alcohol, less tired, who knows. still not crazy about the super-high falsetto the lead does.

unfortunately for them, they were completely over-shadowed by the two bands that followed.

Wax Fang, from Kentucky, was un-fucking-believable. 3-man band, but with an enormous sound. sometimes experimental, sometimes bluesy, sometimes hard-rockin, sometimes almost classical. they list Philip Glass as an influence, and i could hear it (i'm a huge fan). song after song, i was in complete bliss, sitting there with a stupid-ass grin on my face. absolutely loved the lead's voice - reminded me of johnny rotten sometimes, but with a great low end. loved the psychedelic visuals, loved the droning kazoos (see the 2nd video), loved the slide guitar (man, that dude can play). awesome awesome stuff. easily the highlight of the evening for me. these guys will be huge someday, if there is any justice in the world. (please note - i realize these are horrible videos, but i just wanted to give you some idea of what they were doin...)

next up was Dead Confederate, from Athens. really liked these guys, too. 5-man band: 3 guitars, keys and drums. great combination of slow-burning southern psychedelia and gloomy roots rock. voice on lead not my favorite - just a bit reedy, but very strong, at times howling. keys were very pink-floyd-organ-like sometimes (and the player was nuts). have to say - after a while, the songs started to blend together a bit. they were very good, but there wasn't a whole lot of variety (one of the strengths of Wax Fang, I thought). super-hot drunken blonde down in front, gyrating up a storm, so they had that goin for 'em. josephus was right behind her, of course, hopin he'd catch some stray boobage, but no luck. anyways, really enjoyed the set.
all in all, the first time i've enjoyed a show at the cavern in a looong time.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

9/20/08 - Sarah Jaffe, Chameleon Chamber Group, Matthew Gray

headed out to denton on saturday night, cuz i heard Dan's was the place to be. turns out, i heard right.

first up was Matthew Gray, from one of my favorite local groups, Matthew and the Arrogant Sea. I love MATAS so much, i figured i'd like matthew as well, and i was right. pretty sure everything he played was non-band stuff (except maybe "o, jonathan"), but you can definitely tell where the majority of MATAS' sound comes from. he played a beautiful set full of haunting, sometimes spooky, sometimes quirky acoustic folk/pop. his performance was definitely enhanced by his accompanist, noodling on his electric guitar and providing fantastic backing vocals. really nice stuff. matthew was cool enough to spot me a copy of his demo cd, and there's some really cool stuff on there, too. check it out if you have a chance. cannot WAIT for the MATAS cd release party on october 25th.

next up was Chameleon Chamber Group. 4-piece "band": electric piano/synth (the great paul slavens), cello, violin, and EWI (electronic wind instrument, you noob). played mostly classical pieces, but slightly jazzed up, what wif the electronics and all. interesting, and very well done, but after a while i lost interest and headed out to the patio (in the end, it's still just classical music - not what i usually head out for).

sarah jaffe was up last, accompanied by robert gomez on geetar and kris youmans on cello. love sarah's voice, love the cello. as expected, my favorite was "two intangibles can't be had", which always gives me chills. enjoyed the set.

man, i tell you - dan's is a really hapnin place, with a veritable who's who of denton musicians parading thru there. really cool place. and you wouldn't believe what goes on in the parking lot.