Saturday, March 15, 2008

3/14/08 - Sydney Confirm, D Numbers, Sunward

made a rare friday night appearance at club dada (spring break schedules, you know). fellow local music aficionado tk, whose wifey-poo was nice enough to give him a hall pass (ca-rack that whip!) came along for the ride.

was runnin late due to a wreck on central, so prolly for the first time ever, i was completely sober upon entering dada. was none too happy aboot that, but i didn't want to miss any of sunward's set- i'd liked what i'd heard on myspace.

and holy shit, was i right. i fucking loved this band. right up my alley - dark, lush, wall-of-sound, sometimes moody, anthemic art rock with a splash of psychedelia thrown in. but what really blew me away was the incredible collection of talent on the stage. 5-man band: lead on guitar/violin, chick on keys & back-up vox, 2nd guitar (sometimes lap-steel), bass and drums. let me tell you, what that dude can do with a violin is stunning - it was run thru filters and such, and he could make the sucker sing, shriek, shred, whatever. it was absolutely phenomenal. half the time it didn't even sound like a violin - you'd swear you were hearing an unbelievable electric guitar virtuoso. anyways, the rest of the band was fantastic, too. loved the harmonies from the backup vocalist (who also jumped around in her red sundress to a pleasing effect). also loved the lap-steel - damn, what an awesome sound. didn't think it was possible for that thing to not sound hillbilly, but he managed it. the sound fit perfectly in their songs. bass player was kickin some ass back there, and i don't usually notice the bass player. anyhows, easily one of my favorite performances of the last year. definitely a band i will keep an eye on.

got to talk to doug (lead of sunward) for quite a while after the set, whilst D Numbers was setting up their super-conducting super-collider. really nice guy. bot the cd. seems doug and i have been leading parallel lives the last couple years, what with our, um, life-changing events and all. however, the parallellisms came to a screeching halt when doug described his recent successes regarding the fairer sex. won't go into detail, but let's just say there won't be any calls to $4300 hookers from his loft.

tk nearly got bitch-slapped by the keyboard chick's gal-pal when he called her "keyboard chick".
now THAT would've been funny.

chatted with dave of the felons, who informed me that he has, in fact, quit smoking, which is cool for two reasons - one, he really needs to, to save those beautiful pipes of his, and two, it means he actually reads this pieceofshit blog.

talked to greg from hendrick - warned him about the life-force-sucking ability of the firewater bands he was gonna be playin with on saturday night.

d numbers, from santa fe was up next. incredible number of machines and wires and such on stage. 3-man band, two guitars and drums, plus loops, effects, etc. some really fantastic psychedelic grooves, some absolutely incredible beats, wonderful stuff (i was blitzed by then, which really enhanced the effect (is that so wrong?)).

last up was sydney confirm, and they were teeeerible. maybe i should give them a pass cuz they were worn out by sxsw, or maybe this is just a genre i don't "get", but shee-ut i was not diggin it at all. 3-man: guitar, drum, and keys/vox, tho there didn't seem to be much need for the actual keyboard, since all he did was hit one button and a track would start, and he would then sing (horribly) over it. at one point early on, tk leans over and says "it's napoleon dynamite, with pedro on guitar and uncle rico on drums". ok, i couldn't take them seriously after that. again, i freely admit that this type of stuff just ain't my bag, so mebbe they're the best ever at it (whatever it is), but i just couldn't take it, so we left.

went to zini's, as usual, but my alt-universe girlfriend was nowhere to be found. we ate their pizza anyways.

3/12/08 - Dreamend, Ezra Furman, XYZ Affair, Aaron Robinson

went down to the cavern for one of those mid-week SXSW-y shows - just couldn't pass up the chance to see some (hopefully) great out-of-town acts on their way south...

first up was Aaron Robinson, from Nashville. Unfortunately, he was without his band for this show. just him and his geetar. pretty standard singer/songwriter stuff. nice voice, no vibrato tho (strangely enough). had to laugh when he broke out a tom petty cover (won't back down). can't seem to get away from that mother.

next up was XYZ Affair, from Brooklyn. totally loved this band. 4-man band with an awesome set of super-catchy power-pop tunes. heard weezer, happy bullets. loved all the vocals - nice falsetto on the lead, lots of oohs and aahs from the backups. many times, all four of 'em would sing in multi-layered harmony (always dig that). lead was an absolutely fantastic guitar player, which was finally featured on (of all things) a sinead o'connor cover (nothing compares to you). that dude can play some geetar - he should feature that more often. a fantastic performance from a super-talented group. easily the highlight of the evening.

Ezra Furman and the Harpoons from boston were next. 4-man band - no keys, lead on acoustic. very, very good. distinctive yet pleasant voice on lead. heard some ramones, some of the catchier neil young songs, but the most predominant vibe was the violent femmes. nice set of infectious folk-rock songs. very talented group.

last on the bill was dreamend, from chicago. these dudes had "music-school band" written all over 'em. 5 people in the band, including a chick on cello, and one dude on full-time BELLS (i shit you not). bass player and drummer reversed roles - bass player was seated, hunched over his bass, and the drummer was standing whilst pounding on his drums in that oh-so-experimental kind of way. lead vocals not so hot. some dreamy, psychedelic, melancholy spacey rock, kind of like mogwai or EITS, but with bland vocals. just didn't dig it.

the cavern was absolutely empty - not too suprising, i guess, given it was wednesday night and all the bands were out-of-towners.

not a bad show - two out of four ain't nothin to sneeze at (yes, i've seen much worse).

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Recs for this week

hory sheet, what with the time change and all, plus all these mid-week late-night SXSW-y shows to go to, i'm afeered my performance at work might be in jeopardy (sorry, boss). not to mention the punishment my liver is about to endure. here are my recs for the rest of this week:

Wednesday night:
dreamend, ezra furman, aaron robinson, xyz affair at the cavern


cloud cult/my brightest diamond/kid dakota at the granada

Thursday night:
white rabbits, minmae at the cavern

Friday night:
sydney confirm/d numbers/sunward at dada


Birdmonster/Red Monroe at doublewide

Saturday night
dono yet, but here's a charity event bein played by my buddy batman and his band (that's him on the right - ain't he superhero-ish?):

lotus/damian giglio/beating around the bush/1000 miles from home at the liquid lounge

poor man's sxsw at club dada, tho i haven't seen the line-up yet

so hey, if you see a middle-aged un-hipster undergoing liver failure and zonked out in a bar at some point this week, just poke me a few times, and i'll be on my way. my boss'll thank you.

Sunday, March 9, 2008

3/8/08 - Honey Thief, Holy Trinity River, Dustin Morris, Wolff and Tuba

on a day like this, you get into your car and drive like mad
on a day like this, you feel a little sad.
a day like this is worth a million dollars easy
on a day like this, you take the good with the bad...

hibbety hibbety hobbety hobbety easter;s on its way

hello boys and grils

jeezus chrust it's 3 AM, thanks ben franklin you motherFUCKER!

against my better judgement, i went to the mothereffin cavern tonight, my arch-nemesis (can a fuckin club be a nemesis, you ask? oh i think so). knew the best show of the night was prolly at the granada with centromatic, but just felt like rollin the dice a bit tonight. mi amigo joe the boy toy (aka two-beer joe) showed up, too. praise jeebus. i parked in the hood behind the cavern, and for the first time felt a bit skeered due to some of the um, patrons hanging out back there and the graffiti on the fences. decided to do all my front-loadin in one shot, instead of comin back later, so i set a new record - 8 oz of buckeye liquors shittiest vodka and coke in like 5 goddam minutes i shit you not. i was so proud. i immediately alerted the media.

crickets, was what i got! you bastards!!!! i COMMAND you to RESPOND to my text messages!! no matter what hour it is!! even if it's to tell me to SHUT UP, BEEEYATCH!

first up was wolff and tuba, and this was some of the craziest coolest shit i've seen in a looong time. check his myspace - he is super serious aboot everything you hear coming out of his tuba, so like there;s no mike or anything, just pickups on the tuba, and he drums on it, plays it thru filters, loops it, sings thru it, and talks at you thru it between songs and everything. massive piece of electronic equipment in front of him, loopin and filtering everything. fascinating stuff, i tell you. really cool. i thot, if i was gonna start a band, it would be just like that, with me and my trumpet, electronically masturbating. yeah, that's the term that kept comin to my mind. thats not a negative thing, you understand. i am a FAN of masturbation.

next up was dustin morris and the greenstar band, and theys aight, i guess. 4-man, no keys, lead on acoustic, somewhat reedy voice, but ok. broke a string like half-way thru but dint seem to make a difference. what does that mean? not sure. some decent bluesy soul-y guitar pop.

next was holy trinity river, formerly of dallas, now from brooklyn (repre-ohnevermind). 3-man. raspy reedy voice on lead, but ok. some really good bluesy, punky southern-style rock. you know that aint my thing, but i could tell they was pretty damn good. josephus really dug it. i really dug the lead's girlfren (A-1 spinner material (oh god i am so sorry)) . gave us a free EP, athankyouverymuch. eric steele of red monroe stood right next to me in the crowd, and i was dyin to tell him what a huge fan i am and how i've seen them 4 or 5 times and how much i dug 'blue mountain air' last sunday, but then the band was done and he was like schleppin their equipment and shit and then he was gone. so if you have eric steele draggin your shit around town, you must be good, eh?

go check oot joe's review - it'll be much more coherent and music-critic-y and shit.

last up was honey thief, and ok, they wasn't so great. really really generic guitar-strummin wall of sound alt-rock with not-so-great lead vocals. not rilly bad vocals, like if i was singin or anythin, just very average and plain vanilla, which matched the muzak. joe seemed to be done workin over all the ladies in the crowd, so we left.

peace oot