Tuesday, February 26, 2008

2/24/08 - Red Monroe, MOM, All in a Golden Afternoon

short and sweet, just like my trip to dada...

actually had to be at work on sunday night, but needed to kill some time, so i thot i'd head down to dada for a couple hours to catch some of the last day of the melodica music fest so's i could keep my local music cred intact. plus i wanted to see red monroe.

had two stages goin on - the outside stage was a lotta death metal, grindcore, noise, that kinda shtuff. lotsa black, lotsa hair, lotsa tats. not the usual dada crowd. felt a little out of place wearin my american eagle sweatshirt (and the fingers plugged firmly in my ears didn't help either). i won't pretend to understand that uh, music, so i won't even try and critique what i heard. one band had a dude wearin a giant longhorn-type skull over his head, another dude in stained choir robes with his face painted red. couldn't figure out if it was supposed to be funny or not, but i thot it was ('tho i kept the giggling to a minimum, lest i get skewered by a longhorn).

inside, the acts were closer to the usual dada fare. first band i saw was all in a golden afternoon - one chick, one dude, two guitars, plus lots of electronics. ambient, atmospheric, slightly psychedelic instrumentals with wispy vocals. whipped out an autoharp at one point - don't see that too often. some nice, pleasant tunes.

next up was MOM, who get a ton of press around here, so i was pretty excited to finally hear them. really dug these guys. two man instrumental band - violins, cello, guitar (played with a bow sometimes), plus lots of electronics. some beautiful, enveloping, soothing, multi-layered tunes. reminded me of lemon jelly sometimes (check 'em out, if you like MOM). for a brief second, i heard mannheim steamroller, but only for a moment. nice accompanying visuals ('tho it was hard not to be distracted by the 'cinema dada' playing on the wall - had to close my left eye to block it out). a very unique experience.

red monroe - phenomenal, as usual (seen them 3 or 4 times now). i think these guys get better every time i hear them. driving bass lines, incredibly catchy guitar riffs, infectious vocals. if their live performance doesn't get you rockin, there's somethin fundamentally wrong with you. played blue mountain air, one of my favorites, for the first time (pretty sure). had to head back to work after their set, but they alone made the trip worthwhile.

Sunday, February 24, 2008

2/23/08 - Lifters, Romp Almighty, Binary Sunrise

you see you see. you SEE!!!! this is why you go out and see bands, you power thru the lack of sleep and the fact that you have to go to work in the mornin and the long ass drive, because you never know when you'll find a band that goddamn near makes you fuckin cry. THAT, ladies and gentlemen, is why you do it.

ok, this pre-amble was written before i went out, when i was sober, so it's all clever and shit:

left most of my buddies behind and to their own devices tonight, some to carry on cringe-worthy conversations with beer wenches who have the phrase "cum-guzzling" as a part of their conversational vocabulary (ick), and some to recover from a long day of daddydom (ok, mad props). however, the tim harrigan groupie (shiver) came out with his gal-pal (wonder if she knows his secret) along with joe the boytoy to hailey's, so i did not have to cry in my beer alone.

to be fair, i didn't exactly have any must-see shows to offer up, but i thot the trip to hailey's might be worth it. decided against the dan's silverleaf show - just can't take that much country in one sitting.

ok, back to inebriated-land again (see? i am all out of clever). first of all, let me tell you - vodka and sprite zero? no. nonononono. terrible. but i managed.

first up was binary sunrise. what happened to "the push", who was supposed to be first? fuck if i know. anyhow, BS was a 4-man band, lead sanger with lilliputian keyboard and rugby shirt and long hair and basketball goggles like that shithead ballhog kid on my daughter';s basketball team, so i hated him just for that. i kid. lead geetar had one of those belts that's too long and hangs down like some sort of phallic symblol. very phunny. i dont know what the hell this band was supposed to be, altho i was entertained, i will say that. sometimes very retro, 80's sorta synth stuff (reminded joe some of devo). sometimes bluesy, rockabilly stuff??? not bad or anything, just no definable style - kinda all over the place. but still pretty good.

next up was unfuckingbelievable - romp almighty. one chick playin acoustic guitar in impossibly lowcut black dress (turns out, she was wearing a shirt) (sorry, i am a man), one dude on drums with feet and left hand, and synth on right hand. omigod omigod, i loved these two. absolutely beautiful voice and guitar playin, loved the synth, some incredible songs (the myspace doesn't do them justice, btw). can't believe i haven't seen them before now. this was the one that damn near made me cry, with her beautiful soaring voice and the incredibly moving melodies. fuck you if you think i'm a pussy. fuck you. it was a beautiful thing.

last was the lifters, and i thot these guys were mighty damn good. 5-man band, w/ full-time keys. started off with some totally solid guitar/piano pop wall-of sound songs, which i totally dug. believe it or not, heard some chemistry set, calhoun and quiet company, but maybe that's because i want to hear them in every band. amazing voice comin out of the lead (who is not a big dude). funny, when they crossed into alt-country territory, i lost a bit of interest, but that's when the tim harrigan groupie perked up and got interested. different strokes, eh? anywho, they only played 1 or 2 alt-country tunes, then went back to beltin out their fantastic power-pop anthems, which they are damn good at. very polished, very professional. closed with their best song. wouldn't mind hearin them again.

all in all, a pretty damn good night.