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Saturday, September 30, 2006

dj shadow + free adult beverages



Head over to Good Records today at 2:30 for the once in a lifetime chance to "shop with DJ Shadow." I don't know if this means he's going to actually perform (doubt it), but I do know that our man Sober will be spinning while Shadow makes fun of the records you're buying. But hey, it's free beer, so who cares.

Then, head over to Gypsy tonight, where Shadow will be rocking the Ballroom, and Jose Gonzalez and Death Vessel will play the Tearoom. Listen to this Death Vessel song and tell me that you're not at least intrigued to see what his live show will be like. Yeah, it's a "he".

Death Vessel Deep in the Horchata mp3

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Friday, September 29, 2006

spoon on the interface



Finally, something music-related that's worthwhile. The latest guest on AOL's The Interface: Spoon Britt Daniel and his iPod!

Download: Spoon on AOL's The Interface mp3

The setlist:

Metal Detektor
Chips and Dip
They Never Got You

also, if you're in Austin this weekend:

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come on, it's a slow day



Yeah, nothing happening on my end today...so how about "Little Superstar: Explained"?? I'm pretty sure everyone with a computer has seen this video by now. It's been featured everywhere, Tom sent a myspace bulletin about it, hell, even Vanderslice loves it. (Edit: the video has over 1 million views on YouTube, complete with some of the best comments ever. My favorite: "Why does that Indian woman have to be such a hater, coming in there and being all 'dara dara dara dara.'") And, I know you're wondering what the shit was going on in that video, so here are some key points, courtesy of this "pop-up video" style version:

  • the clip is from a 1986 movie called Maarveran
  • the little dancing dude goes by the name "thavakalai", or "frog"
  • the language they're speaking = Tamil. Wonder if M.I.A. knows these dudes.
  • the song is a remix of the of "Holiday Rap" from MC Miker G & DJ Sven. The remix is Madonna vs. MC Miker G & DJ Sven called "Madonna - Holiday (Summer Holiday Rap Mix)" Here's the mp3 of the original:
MC Miker & DJ Sven Holiday Rap mp3 (yousendit link)

See, I told you there was nothing cool happening today. But if you're in San Antonio, go to this tonight though. We love Sparrow House:

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Thursday, September 28, 2006

Ratatat: Live in Dallas


Ratatat DJ Afterparty @ The Cavern

I'm a little worn out from the party last night, so here are a bunch of photos from RATATAT's sold out show at Gypsy, and of the afterparty at The Cavern. Thanks to The Black, Sober, $elect, and of course, Ratatat. The Black played a great (albeit too short) opening set, $elect and Sober proved why The Party is the best thing in North Texas, and Ratatat killed both their live set and their DJ set. Couldn't have been any better. And to everyone who showed up, I love you. (edit: read a great review of the show over at We Shot J.R.)

ps. Ratatat, sorry Dallas closes at 2 AM. We're lame, we know.






click read more to view more photos, and click photo for larger image...


RATATAT: LIVE AT GYPSY TEAROOM







RATATAT AFTERPARTY AT THE CAVERN






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fistfight doo-wop

First things first: the Ratatat show and afterparty were insane last night. Ratatat's set at Gypsy was sold out by 8:30 PM, and the afterparty was ridiculous. I've never seen so many people at the Cavern on a Wednesday night. And hot people, too. Dancing. I've got a huge photo/recap post planned for later today that is going to be awesome, but for now, music:



Jesus Christ, those dudes over at Numero Group are unreal. They've just released the third installment (this year) of their Eccentric Soul series, in which they compile rare and forgotten soul/funk from various regions of the U.S. This time, on Eccentric Soul: Mighty Mike Lenaburg, the focus is on that notorious soul hotbed of Phoenix, AZ.

On this compilation of totally obscure and kickass soul from the '60s and '70s, according to the Numero Group site, "...Mike Lenaburg's productions represent that wrong side of the desert sound. A melange of Tejano psychedelia, flutey funk, horny soul, and fistfight doo-wop." Umm, "fistfight doo-wop"?? Hell yes. It was damn near impossible to choose just one song from this comp to share, but I think this one should suffice. You might think this dude sounds like a poor-man's James Brown, and you might be right. Hell, he even gives the Godfather of Soul a shout out in the song. But this track exemplifies the raw, sweaty, authenticity of the entire record.

Ronnie Whitehead Out of Breath mp3

This record, along with all other Eccentric Soul releases (Columbus, Chicago, Miami, and Detroit) can be found here. All come with our highest recommendation.

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Wednesday, September 27, 2006

oh boy



According to a Dallas Police report, Terrell Owens overdosed on pain medication yesterday evening, in what the police are calling a suicide attempt. The report said Owens was asked by rescue workers "if he was attempting to harm himself, at which time he stated, "Yes." (source: CNNSI.com) If this is I true, I will be extremely shocked, especially considering how proud of himself T.O. sounded in his rap debut:

Terrell Owens I'm Back mp3

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instead


Ola Podrida

Austin's Brooklyn's Ola Podrida has posted a couple final mixes from their upcoming debut LP. According to a myspace bulletin, the band's full-length will be out in Spring '07 on Plug Research, and Jim Putnam (of The Radar Bros.) did the final mixing. I've sung the praises of Ola Podrida in the past, but these new mixes sound fantastic...I recommend you at least check out "Instead."

No downloads of the new mixes yet, so in the meantime, here's one of the older demos:

Ola Podrida Jordanna (demo) mp3

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and now for the self-promotional nonsense...



The dudes from Rogue Wave will be our guests on our SIRIUS show tonight (yeah, all of 'em!) They'll pick some songs, talk some shit, and we'll discuss the very important Benefit Show this Saturday for their drummer Pat, and what you can do to help.

Finally, the Cavern is the place to be tonight, as Austin's The Black will be playing, followed by a DJ set by my boy DJ $elect (and me pushing buttons and pretending to look cool), and capped off by a DJ set by the boys from RATATAT. Only 5 bucks, or free w/ your RATATAT show ticket stub. See you there.

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Tuesday, September 26, 2006

New Voxtrot: "Trouble"



The boys in Voxtrot keep churning out the EPs (well, this is more of a 7"/maxi-single), with Your Biggest Fan due on November 7th. The 3-song disc (which I believe is a preview of the band's upcoming debut LP) contains the trademark-Voxtrot title-track, the gorgeous, somewhat of a departure for the band, strings-laden ballad "Sway," and "Trouble," my favorite song from the single. The band and PlayLouder have hooked us up with an mp3 to share with you guys:

Voxtrot Trouble mp3



pre-order Your Biggest Fan here. Only 4 bucks!

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Scratch Perry: Live at CBGB

It's time like these we wish we lived in New York. It's not every day you get the chance to see a legendary iconic figure perform in a legendary venue. Luckily, our boy Specs Toporczer was able to make the show, and sent us this review, complete with photos of Mr. Scratch:



Lee Perry wears enough flair to outfit an entire chain of Chotchkie's. Bracelets. Rings. Earrings. Hat pins. Double what Mr. T had around his neck. We put Scratch on a scale before the show; he weighed 152 pounds in the raw and 183.5 with the hardware. He's a septuagenarian and therefore can pretty much get away with anything -- including one extended sermon about "pee, poo and shit," and another about the devil and cigarettes and uniting Jamaica and America, neither of which were part of the bargain when I bought the $42 ticket. Regardless of that, seeing the crazy legend at NYC's most famous venue (in its final month of existence) was well worth it. How many other dudes in the same age bracket as Joe Paterno are capable of ripping off a soulful dub set for a bunch of stoned New Yorkers? And if you're Dub Is A Weapon -- a young sextet from Brooklyn that is 83.3 percent white -- how sick is it that you get to be Scratch's backing band?

Weird show, great experience, subpar snapshots from a correspondent who couldn't figure out how to use his new camera. R.I.P CBGB, long live L.S.P.

- Specs Toporczer




Lee Scratch Perry Panic in Babylon (Dave Sitek remix) mp3

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wet and rusting



I think I've mentioned a couple times how excited I am to hear Menomena's Barsuk debut, Friend and Foe. The band has a tour EP featuring the lead single, "Wet and Rusting," (listen to the album version here) as well as three b-sides and two remixes of the single. This stripped down version of "Wet and Rusting" illustrates just how great Menomena's songs are at their core, minus all of the electronic flourishes:

Menomena Wet and Rusting (Loaf: A Deli Tea Version) mp3

buy the EP here

Previously:

Menomena E is Stable mp3
Menomena Shirt mp3

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elsewhere:

Here's Austin LaRoche's latest column, about nothing in particular. Sorry about the Falcons, dude.

These Pretzels Are Making Me Thirsty

Randomonium
By: Austin LaRoche

A conversation Rachael and I had the other day...

"What are you writing your column about this week?" She asked.
"It's called Randomonium. I'm just going to write like 20 random thoughts on the music world, maybe a little bit of the TV world, etc."
"Randomonium? Is that even a word?"
"It is now."

click read more to continue reading Austin's column...



So, let’s talk a little indie, eh?

20. Another Voxtrot EP due in November? Really? EP? Not LP? I'll tell ya, I talked to their lead singer Rahmesh in March at a show and he told me that if he had it his way, he'd just make EPs all the time, but he knew for obvious reasons, the band would need to make an LP soon. Still, I look at it this way--they're releasing two EPs this year with a total of 8 songs on it. 8 Voxtrot songs a year, assuming these new ones are on the same level as their predecessors, is completely cool with me. Take your time boys, quality over quantity in the music world.

19. I love reading music media. About twice a month, I go to Borders and read all the music magazines for about 4 or 5 hours. It's good alone time and one of my favorite activities in the world. So I'm down at Borders the other day and I'm going through Rolling Stone, Paste, Filter, etc. and I even have Blender, Spin, and Q just to see their reviews. I swear to god at least 4 of those pulled some sort of "if you like Fleetwood Mac, you’ll LOVE Midlake" maneuvers. Can we all agree that both of these bands are completely awesome for different reasons? The Trials of Van Occupanther is one of my favorite records of the year, but the second I hear it, I don't want to call my mom up and say, "hey Mom, I know you and everyone else in the 70s bought Rumours¸ and I know how classic of a record it is, but since you liked it, you have to go out and buy this new record by a band called Midlake." I mean, I'd understand a "if you love Fleetwood Mac, you’ll like Midlake," that makes sense, doesn't it? Let's let the classic record get the "love" status and we'll let the new kids on the block take the "like" status. Oh, oh, oh, oh, oh, the RIGHT STUFF. (Did anyone get that?)


18. Funny conversation I had with my buddy Pat earlier this year...

"Hey dude, have you got the new Band of Horses record? You would love it." I told him.
"Yeah I like it a lot."
"It sounds like what would happen if My Morning Jacket fucked the Shins and had a kid."
"I don't know about that."
"Yeah, me neither, but it sounds funny."

17. Now, I was scared of fat Anna Nicole Smith, and once in awhile, one of those Law and Order spin-offs will have a creepy female serial killer that will give me goosebumps, but I've never been terrified of a woman the way I am terrified of Snoop from the new season of The Wire. She's a fictional character who uses a nail gun, and I still lock my doors at night fearing I may have wronged Marlo unintentionally, and she's out for me. PS--I miss Stringer and Avon. R.I.P. Stringer.

16. Why does Bonnie 'Prince' Billy refuse to get on eMusic or iTunes? (I'm sure there are a lot out there, but we'll focus on him today). I don't like buying CDs. If I like an album enough, I'll buy it on vinyl, but I hate going into a record store and buying CDs. Mr. Oldham, could you do us all a favor and just put the damn things online somewhere? And by the way, now that I have your attention, sir, this new album sounds pretty damn good, and as always, you did not disappoint. Thanks for another consistent, beautiful album, pal.

15. Along the lines of the Midlake/Fleetwood Mac argument, I've heard people say that the Cold War Kids sound like Jeff Buckley, Spoon, and the Velvet Underground. I think these guys are amazing and will go on to make astounding records, but why do we feel like we have to throw them this sort of praise? I just don't feel the words "influences" are used enough in these descriptions. Yes, the Spoon and VU influence is there and the lead vocals sound a little Buckley-ish at times, but those three artists deserve a little more than claiming a new band with their first album sound like what would happen had the other three made a record together. I think I'm turning into a crabby old man who complains too much. Really, who cares? The music's great, I need to get over these little things.

14. I know this may be a little too Rolling Stone-ish for a few of you, but with all the great albums coming out this year, Bob Dylan still tops the list from a critical view. Other than possibly the Beatles or the Stones, can you really say that there's ever been a better artist than Bob Dylan? So many records, so many years. He's hit the highs and the lows, but to be able to write songs about the world in different generations, to look at love from all those aspects of life (youth, adult, old geezer) and do it so honestly, well, Mr. Zimmerman, let me commend you on being the greatest musical artist I've ever listened to. You get my vote for Master of the Universe.

13. SPORTS OPINION ALERT! I understand why Peyton Manning is by far the best fantasy quarterback of this generation, but how anyone can put him above Brady and the 3 rings, I'll never understand. Brady is so clutch, so cool and calm with the pressure on him, which is what all the great quarterbacks had. You know what Brady never had? Marvin Harrison or Edge. I think the Peyton vs. Brady argument is like one of those "there are two types of people in the world" type arguments Chuck Klosterman made with the 80s Celtics and 80s Lakers. Anyway, until Peyton wins the big one (and he has the talent around him to do so, I'm tired of the excuses), he has to sit at number 2. He better act fast, Carson Palmer's creeping up the ladder.

(I've just ensured at least 3 "you don't know what the fuck you're talking about, you god damn idiot" responses with a sports opinion. Haha, I love it.)

12. I'm trying to figure this out--at this point last year, there were about 17 records I loved. This year? Maybe 5. Now, is it because I've had less time this year to really listen and investigate? Or was 2005 just one of those years with a ton of really awesome albums? Is 2006 making a strong push late? Am I not paying enough attention this year? Maybe this is the year of the "grower" albums. You know, the ones you have to listen to over and over to appreciate. Maybe I need a little more patience, right Axl?

11. Does anyone read Filter Magazine? I know they gave Chris a very cool and prestigious award this year, so I won't be harsh, however, has anybody else read their review section? They love EVERYTHING. There's like 1 or 2 albums under 85% in their rating system. The only records I've ever seen getting bashed in there are the Babyshambles record (maybe the most disappointing album I've ever listened to) and some Death from Above record. I guess they just don't waste time on the ones they don't like. There's nothing wrong with that, I'm just saying, they're making me waste money on mediocre albums, and I'm not that rich.

10. My buddy Tyler created this thing called the David Robinson Theory. It wasn't really a theory, he just simply said "how can someone NOT not like David Robinson." Basically, D-Rob is so likable, there's no way not to like him unless you don't like good people. Anyways, I think I'm changing the name of this concept to the Steve Irwin Status. Such a sad story. I couldn't even watch the TV telecasts. Anyway, if you can think of athletes or celebrities so likable that one should feel like a terrible person if they don't like that said athlete or celebrity, than that athlete or celebrity can enter Steve Irwin Status. Not more D-Rob. Sorry Tyler.

9. I just wanted to spend a moment to thank the kicker at the University of Alabama, the Carolina Panthers second half defense, Notre Dame's first half offense, and West Virginia's pathetic performance. This was the first weekend all year I haven't made money betting on football, and I wanted to thank all of you for your pathetic displays and for making me think you were all better than you were. Now I'm having to put up way too much money on tonight's game to chase back my cash. I know how we all felt about Hurricane Katrina, and I think it's great that the NFL is back in New Orleans, but tonight, let's go Falcons! And let's win by 4 and a half points, eh?

8. Do you ever buy something, throw it on your iPod and then not thinking about, never listen to it? After that, do you ever put the Pod on shuffle and then hear that album and realize it was so much better than you originally remembered and you start listening to it ALL THE TIME? And that was, Austin's experience with The Little Ones this month. Join us again next week on iPod Discussions when we unveil our All-Time Favorite On-the-Go Playlist.

7. Here's an email I got from a reader named Jim...

Why does the one tall pale waifish most-likely-a-vocalist female member of a band that is otherwise comprised of only male members always relegated to playing keyboards? Why doesn't she play the gimmicky instrument for the group, like the hurdy gurdy, glockenspiel, or french horn?

I call it the "I just got done watching the New Pornographers and was wondering..." question of the month. And to answer your pregunta, Jim, who I assume looks like and is living the life of the character Jim from The Office because I am weird like that, I think the reason women never go for the gimmick instrument is because women are at a time in history where they are showing they are just as capable and powerful as men. The gimmick instrument is one of those things that are really cool, but at the end of the day, it is a gimmick, right? I feel that the ladies don't want to be gimmicks right now, and I understand completely. But a great observation. And on another note, Jim's email was my first fanmail and I've told myself I had to get him in here. Good luck with the transfer, and don't give up on Pam, buddy, YOU CAN DO IT!

6. There’s a 6% chance I’ve mentioned this before, but I don't think so. Anyway, as most of you know, The Killers are releasing an album next week called Sam's Town. Now, Sam's Town is a casino in Las Vegas, and I have a funny story about it. Last summer, my buddy Chris and I, on our first Vegas trip ever, were winning cash on the slot machines (please feel free to make fun of me on the slots, I've since learned they are for old people and people who don't gamble much) and we overheard this old lady telling another old lady that this casino on the outskirts of town, Sam's Town, had the best paying slots in the city. So in our last hour of Vegas, we stopped by to win a little bit of money. Unfortunately for me, I had to go to the restroom. Now, I won't get into detail, but when I have to use a public restroom, I always go for the handicap stall. It's more spacious and you get your own sink. I never thought about handicap people using them, which I understand makes me a terrible person. Regardless, I get out of the handicap stall and see a line of old men on those motorized Rascals. I decided it would be smart to fake a limp, however, as I was walking by the Rascals, an old man grabbed my arm, looked me in the eye and said, "Straighten that stride, and stay out of that stall." And yes, I did lose $100 bucks afterwards. Which is reason #4,769 why I'm a karma guy. Anyways, that's my Sam's Town story, and name alone, I am more excited about that album than any other.

5. Best new show I've watched so far this season? Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip. To be fair, Six Degrees was TiVo-ed and I haven't got a chance to watch it. Regardless, Studio 60 is going to be a great. Well written, cool concept, political enough to piss a few folks off. I couldn't be more excited. And one last TV note before we move on--congrats to the writers of The Office. Well played, gentlemen, I didn't think you guys were going to be able to pull it off, but you did. That's what she said...and he said.

4. A quick shout out to Pitchfork writer Amanda Petrusich, for writing the best sentence of any reviewer this year. When reviewing Bob Dylan’s Modern Times. She wrote...

The biggest disappointment here is that Modern Times is probably Dylan's least-surprising release in decades--it's the logical continuation of its predecessor, created with the same band he's been touring with for years, fed from familiar influences, and sprinkled with all the droll, anachronistic bits now long-expected.

Of course, she sprinkled that Pitchfork language all over it, but the idea behind it is perfect. It isn't easy to love an album that you expect to be exactly what it is, is it? I didn't even buy the Johnny Cash album this year because I feared this would happen. Then, of course, I got my hands on it, realized that even though it was everything I thought it would be, it was still amazing, heartfelt, and more honest than any other album I had heard all year. How does Cash come off so honest singing OTHER people’s songs? I don't get it, either, but the old man pulled it off til the end.

3. Has anyone noticed that The Arctic Monkeys have been plagued by the "Garden State Effect." You know, it started indie, then once the masses loved it too, the original fans turn on it? I like the Monkeys. I lived in London for 6 weeks in the summer of 2004 and so I kind of look at differently then someone who hasn't been across the pond (so sorry if that sounds snobby, I really don't want it to, but I don't think there's a way for it not to come across as so.) In England, they have a lot of people experiencing the "I hate my job, I live for the weekend" situation. Remember, they created the original version of The Office. That album is just about being young and dumb and having a good time. It resonates with its audience and there's a reason it sold more than Definitely Maybe in the UK. There's no mystery with the album, it's just a bunch of kids talking about the London club scene. Here's my question about the backlash bloggers who were originally responsible for creating the band--when these people have children, are they going to hate them if they are popular in school or are they going to teach their kids to be repulsive so they can be the only people who love them? Just because other people like it, doesn't mean you have to change your tune, fellas.

2. What's the over/under on the amount of states Sufjan gets through in his lifetime? I mean, we know he wants to do all of them, but that's no easy task. He'll have to release 2-3 albums a year to get it accomplished. So, realistically, I think we should make 26 the over/under number. That's what I think he'll get through. 26 states. Now, I really wonder which states are MUST DO and which are WHEN I GET AROUND TO IT. I say he's got to have a California one and maybe overdue the ukulele and make a Hawaii one. That's it. Those will be good for me.

1. Finally, a few quick thoughts...

Why did I number these? How many people are going to scream at me for having opinions? Thanks for the funny additions to the concert rules, good times. For those of you who enjoyed the sappier For the Love of the Sound series, don't worry, I haven't forgot about it, no promises, but it will come back soon. For those who liked the random TV thought and random Sports thought, they will be back soon as well, I just felt like they needed to be apart of Randomonium this week. To all the fans who read the column, send the emails, write the interesting and constructive comments about the column, I just wanted to say Thanks. I took a week off from reading comments after I got flustered about the guys in the Blender Lounge, and I found I missed the readers who left the fun messages way more than I did the people who don't care for the column and want to tell me in a 14 year-old-like manner. I'm back on the comments, and for those of you who wrote constructive advice, don't worry, Rachael informed me on the good stuff, and I'll do my best to keep writing an original, fun, music column for everyone. I like the Radomonium column idea a lot, because most of the time, I only have a paragraph or two on certain bands and songs and stuff, so don't be surprised to see it make a comeback or to be a regular series. The past two months have been a blast, I love this column and I love writing it for you guys...see ya next week.

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the knife is scary



As regular readers of this blog can attest, I'm somewhat obsessed with The Knife. This track, however, is no "Heartbeats;" in fact, it's even far more bizarre than anything on Silent Shout. It's a (rare?) 13 minute, experimental "song" from 2002 that was distributed by some literary magazine in Sweden. The song is little more than a somewhat terrifiying curiousity, but with Halloween coming up, I figured people may need something to play as haunted house background music. Listen for the part where it sounds like Karin is being tortured in a dungeon, or maybe she's the one torturing a cat or something, I don't know. Guaranteed to make little kids cry.

The Knife Nedsvartning mp3

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Monday, September 25, 2006

macromantics


Macromantics

Say hello to Kill Rock Stars' newest signee, Ms. Romy Hoffman, aka Macromantics. She's obviously going to get Lady Sov comparisons right off the bat, but with influences ranging from Kathleen Hannah and Patti Smith to Nas and Rakim, I already like her more than "the biggest midget in the game." No mp3s from the new record yet (Moments in Movement comes out on KRS in January '07) but you can listen to a few new songs on her myspace, and here's an older mp3:

Macromantics Madlymantics mp3

Also, Ro Sham Bo did a pretty nice remix of her song "Scorch" that you can listen to here.

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elsewhere:

  • This is the best thing I've seen on the interweb this month, hands down. (via BWE)
  • Okay, this is really the last thing, you guys should come to this because it will most likely rule:

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Sunday, September 24, 2006

the pirate's gospel


Alela Diane

Alela Diane hails from Nevada City, CA, also the hometown of friend and kindred spirit Joanna Newsom. Alela hand-made 650 copies of her beautiful debut, The Pirate's Gospel, "sewing lace and paper bags for the case, drawing golden ships, lettering ink, and burning each cd..." Unfortunately, these are all gone, but luckily Holocene Music will be releasing the record nationally on October 24, 2006.

I can't recommend this album enough; Alela's voice is big and powerful and haunting, her gospel-folk laden with lush imagery about the sea and the forest and the hills. I particularly love this track, in which Alela is accompanied by a chorus of young children, giving the song the feel of an old campfire hymn:

Alela Diane Pieces of String mp3

Alela Diane will play shows in the near future with Chris Walla, Juana Molina, and Akron/Family. View all of the dates here. The album should be available for purchase here soon.

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Friday, September 22, 2006

Tonight in Dallas



Colour Revolt, Stereogum's latest "Band to Watch" will be playing downstairs at The Cavern here in Dallas, as I spin a bunch of White Denim songs upstairs, occasionally mixing in a song from The Knife. I'm so predictable these days. The fun starts at 10.

Colour Revolt Mattresses Underwater mp3

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St. Vincent + Sufjan



In what we're calling our favorite bill of the year, Dallas' own St. Vincent has been tapped to open for Sufjan Stevens on his upcoming European Tour. Here are the complete dates:

November 1 Dublin - Ireland - Olympia
November 2 Manchester - England - Academy 2
November 3 London - England - Barbican
November 4 Gent - Belgium - Vooruit
November 5 Barcelona - Spain - Casino L Allanca
November 6 Paris - France - Le Bataclan
November 7 Cologne - Germany - Gloria
November 8 Amsterdam - Holland - Paradiso
November 9 Copenhagen - Denmark - Vega
November 10 Oslo - Norway - Sentrum Scene
November 11 Stockholm - Sweden - Berns
November 12 Reykjavik - Iceland - Frikirkjan Church
November 13 Reykjavik - Iceland - Frikirkjan Church

St. Vincent's debut LP is scheduled to be released in Spring 2007. You can also catch St. Vincent opening for Jose Gonzalez tomorrow night in Atlanta, GA and Monday night in Birmingham, AL. View all of her tour dates here.

...and read our other posts about St. Vincent. Yeah we really like her.

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Thursday, September 21, 2006

paper sailboat



Thanks to reader Spencer for pointing out that Austin's Dana Falconberry released a beautiful new EP, entitled Paper Sailboat, earlier this week. Dana is originally from Michigan and lived in Arkansas for several years before moving to Austin. I was familiar with her name (she sang with Peter & the Wolf on a number of their songs), but I'd never had the pleasure of hearing her own material until today. This beautifully sad and haunting song features Patty Griffin on piano:

Dana Falconberry Sadie mp3

Dana's upcoming Austin dates, starting tomorrow night:

Sep 22nd 8:00 Epoch Coffee Austin, TX
Sep 23rd 9:00 Clementine Coffee Bar Austin, TX
Sep 24th 8:00 Green Muse Austin, TX

Befriend Dana at myspace. Purchase Paper Sailboat at one of the aforementioned shows, or on iTunes.

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elsewhere:

Here's the playlist for our SIRIUS show from last night

1. Sufjan Stevens--"Sister Winter" (mp3)
2. The Polyphonic Spree--"I'm Calling"
3. Grizzly Bear--"Knife"
4. St. Vincent--"Now Now"
5. Cat Power--"I Don't Blame You"
6. Peter & the Wolf--"Safe Travels" (mp3)
7. The Knife--"Still Light"
8. Ola Podrida--"Pour Me Another"
9. Zykos--"Keep it Light"
10. Tapes 'n Tapes--"Cowbell (the Black Eyes Remix)"
11. The Blow--"Pile of Gold"
12. Land of Talk--"Sea Foam"
13. White Denim--"Wet Sand"
14. The Crystals--"He Kissed Me (B-More Club Version")
15. Susan Christie--"For the Love of a Soldier"
16. Joanna Newsom--"Emily (live)" (mp3)
17. Beach House--"Master of None"
18. The Beatles--"A Day in the Life"
19. Van Morrison--"Sweet Thing"
20. Beulah--"If We Can Land a Man on the Moon..." (mp3)
21. Brendan Benson--"Metarie"
22. Broken Social Scene--"Anthems for a Seventeen Year Old Girl"
23. Cass McCombs--"Not the Way" (mp3)
24. Cat Power--"Cross Bones Style"
25. Juana Molina--"Rio Seco"
26. J Dilla--"The Diff'rence"
27. Lil' Wayne--"Sportscenter"
28. Masta Killa--"Iron God Chamber"

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Ghostland Observatory

Ghostland Observatory's ACL performance "was like a sonic countdown on its liftoff to stardom"
--Austin360.com


Ghostland at ACL

As I've mentioned a couple of times in the past few days, I (along with everyone else in within earshot) was absolutely blown away by Austin's Ghostland Observatory at ACL over the weekend. Ms. Cindy Hotpoint said it best in her Guide to ACL: "These guys don't let up...ever." I think everyone in the crowd for their set would echo that sentiment.

First off, this band is visually overwhelming: one dude (Thomas Turner) wears a fucking Dracula cape, and their frontman (Aaron Behrens) has pigtails and struts and peacocks around the stage like Mick Jagger channeling Prince channeling the ghost of the great Sitting Bull. The band gets a lot of comparisons to The Faint or The Rapture, but I think a more accurate comparison would be Freddie Mercury fronting an experimental electro-punk band masterminded by a dude in a Dracula cape.

Here are a couple tracks, the first from their new album, Paparazzi Lightning, and the second from their debut, delete.delete.i.eat.meat.

Ghostland Observatory Midnight Voyage mp3
Ghostland Observatory Silver City mp3

Buy both albums here. These dudes are not to be missed live, so do yourself a huge favor and check them out on their upcoming U.S. tour.

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elsewhere:


Ryan Gosling in Half Nelson

We saw Half Nelson last night, and we can't recommend it enough. Gosling gives the best performance of his life (sorry all you fans of The Notebook), Shareeka Epps should get Oscar consideration, and the wonderful soundtrack perfectly matches the restraint, subtlety, and emotional starkness of the film. Here's a song from the movie:

Broken Social Scene da da dada mp3

purchase the soundtrack here

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Wednesday, September 20, 2006

projection



Dallas' own We Shot JR has compiled an excellent 19 song, CD-length mix of some of North Texas' finest bands, offering definitive proof that we do in fact have a pretty good local scene here in the DFW metroplex. The mix includes gorilla vs. bear favorites Tree Wave, Teenage Symphony, the Theater Fire, and more. Highly recommended. Check it out here.

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also:

Thanks to the folks at ACL for inviting us to the tapings, and for sending us this photo that official KLRU-TV/Austin City Limits photographer Scott Newton took during the taping. I never get tired of good photos of Ms. Marshall:



For some more absolutely genius photos from the ACL Festival, check out Mr. Chad Wadsworth's Flickr account.

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business deal happenings

There have been some very cool happenings recently in the world of one of my very favorite indie record labels, Austin's Business Deal Records. So, we thought we'd fill you in:


Maya Bond

(Edit: Maya is actually on Ellahy Amen Records. Sorry for any confusion; I was under the impression that she is affiliated with Biz Deal since she is linked on their website, but the people at Ellahy Amen have informed me that she is not.)

You know that we're huge fans of six-year old Maya Bond here at gorilla vs. bear (even Newsweek picked up on our love), so of course we love this, her very first video. Watch Maya's "Cute Papa" video here (highly recommended). And here's the mp3, which was included on our Austin Mixtape:

Maya Bond Cute Papa mp3

Maya will also be playing two very rare live dates this month...get your tickets here. And buy Maya's charming debut, Pink Drums Purple Lights, here


Cavedweller

Another Business Deal artist that has caught our attention recently is Cavedweller. Here's a great track from his new album, The Best Version of "Gloria" Ever There Was:

Cavedweller Can't Cook Down mp3

You an see Cavedweller dancing in the aforementioned Maya Bond video, or listen to more songs on myspace. Buy Cavedweller's new LP here

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elsewhere:

Our boy Austin LaRoche's column this week is painfully timely and relevant, seeing as how some moron standing directly behind me nearly ruined the Joanna Newsom concert the other night with his incessant unfunny comments and atonal sing-alongs. Now before you comment about how everyone already knows this stuff, please be aware that I saw approximately 50 sets this weekend in Austin, and there were numerous people doing the things Austin mentions at each and every one. Click "read more" link to read Austin's column...



The 2006-2007 Official Concert Rules of Etiquette - Volume 1

So I'm at the Band of Horses show this past week, and as expected, they were amazing. For the most part, there was a great crowd. Lots of singing along, a good amount of fist-pumpers, and there was even a hipster in a Payne Stewart hat. Good times. However, after a couple Chatty-Cathys decided to yap to one another during the show, I became a little agitated.

"Maybe they don't know any better," Rachael said, giving them the benefit of the doubt.
"How do you not know to shut up during a concert?"
"I dunno. Maybe it's their first one?"

And we had a good chuckle. But we also got to thinking. What is the standard? Is there a "rules of etiquette" guideline out there for concert goers?

So I googled it. And there were some rules, mostly for opera and classical shows, the only significant list being a WOXY board thread on T-shirt etiquette at shows, so I'll stay away from that angle. But I figured we, the indie crowd, need to go ahead and make some rules. This is a rough sketch. All other suggestions will be much appreciated, so feel free to add a couple rules yourself.

Section I: Situations

You Know Nothing About the Band

We've all been here before, right? Maybe a friend suggests a band to catch or maybe you're just unfamiliar with the opener, but you've probably been at a concert before where you knew absolutely nothing about an artist who you were watching perform. There's not really anything special you should do, however, there's three important things you should NEVER do:

1. Talk - Even if you're there for the headliner, you shut your mouth when the band plays. If you want to talk, go to the bathroom and do it. If you want to talk to someone of the opposite sex, go to the bathroom they use and do it, whatever. Just stay away from the people who care about the music and want to listen to the band. In some venues, I'll even allow the bar as a place to chat, but it's not too common. I'd say use common sense, but let's be honest, sense hasn't been "common" for a long time now. To sum up it, if a band's playing, there's really nothing you should be saying. (Be sure to tip your waitress, I'll be here all night.)

2. Heckle the Band - Do you remember that whole "Ryan Adams kicked a guy out of his concert because he yelled 'Play Summer of '69" story? What a lot of sources didn't write about the guy who got kicked out is that he had been shouting it after every song, and once Ryan had heard it 10-15 times, he wanted the guy to go. Who could blame him? You just don't heckle bands at shows. Hell, you shouldn't really heckle comedians, everyone in the audience hates hecklers. But more than that, what's the point? Do you feel cool because you shout out that a band "sucks?" I think we're going to go back to the "does anyone who you respect do these things" approach. And by the way, I know this rarely happens (I've never actually seen it), but it's something you gotta make sure isn't increasing, you know?

3. Throw Stuff at the Band - This is more of a festival move done by drunk morons, but it still exists and is probably the crappiest thing you could do to a band. You think they suck and they "deserve it?" Don't watch them. Go on to your blog and tell everyone they suck, but don't throw shit. I've seen this a lot, really, and I always wonder where people's friends are in these situations. If you had a buddy who got a little too drunk, saw him pick up a 20 ounce bottle, start a throwing motion, wouldn't you do everything to stop him? Yet somehow, bands end up dodging these bottles like Patches O'Houlihan at every festival I've ever been to (excluding Pitchfork).

You Know Some Stuff by the Band, But Not Too Much

Just don't be annoying. Don't try to pretend you know a lot, don't try and sing along to songs you're not familiar with, and don't be a jerk. Just sit back and enjoy the band. That's easy, right?

You Know a Ton About the Band (i.e., you can sing along to 80% of the songs)

A couple rules for seeing bands you LOVE...

1. Other people love their sound just as much. Just because you own more gear than everyone else at the show and have stalked the band after shows, doesn't mean you're enjoying yourself more than everyone else. I've got in conversations with people who feel like loving a band is a competition, challenging me with questions like "how many bootlegs do I own?" None, asshole, but I still like Wilco just as much as you do, and I didn't spend 200 bucks on Tour shirts to have to pretend I'm the only one who truly loves the band.

2. If you didn't get there early enough to grab the front row, tough shit. Just because it's your third time seeing Clap Your Hands Say Yeah this summer doesn't mean you need to throw an elbow into my head to stand 4 feet in front of me. I was there first. Now sometimes there's a lot of space and it's no big deal getting to the front, but when you're really knocking someone to get through, things have gotten out of hand.

(Random question: why do I keep cussing? I think I keep getting mad as I reminisce over past infractions to these rules. I'll try to tone it down from here, aight?)

Section II. Props

Cell Phones

I should never have to write this, but it happens all the time so I must: DON'T TALK ON THE DAMN PHONE DURING A SHOW. I get it, Billy had to stay at work longer than expected and doesn't know where you are. Go out and find him. Don't scream over the band to try and tell him you're wearing a pink shirt. Send a text message. I don't care.

Now, I know we all like to do the "I'm seeing The Shins and they're playing "New Slang" and that song changed my friend Natalie's life so I need to call her phone and let her hear it" move. I'm by no means against it. But that's the only dialogue you get. You dial, you hear "hello" and then you text "I'll call you after the show" after the song. That's it. And also, please stop reaching to the heavens with your phone for better sound quality. If you're arm is blocking someone's view, you probably need to bring that phone down a bit.

No ring tone, not even if it's a song by the band playing. Can't do it.

Cameras

I got a feeling this could get controversial. Bloggers love taking concert pictures. They were the easiest people to spot at the Chicago festivals. The band goes on and the cameras start flashing. Now, before I get into my new rules, let me say that this doesn't go for anyone with a press pass.

Ok, here's what I'm suggesting. You get 2 songs to get all of your "Bassist by himself, drummer by himself, ukulele player by herself" pictures. Get everyone out of the way in TWO songs. After that, you get 5 special moments in the show. For example, when I saw The National at Pitchfork, I got my standard pics out of the way early, and then they started "Abel." As the song began, I noticed the singer getting really into it and he began gyrating all over the stage, so I got pictures of it. During the same festival, Tapes 'n' Tapes did the whole "lead singer and lead guitar jamming out back to back" thing, and I had to capture it.

I know what you're wondering: who cares how many pictures they want to take? And my response? Stand behind them sometime, then tell me your feelings. Watch them raise their arms and take 20 shots a song and enjoy moving your head to the left and right to watch the band because they're blocking the view. Then tell me what you think about the camera crazy people.

Lighters

Festivals, arenas, and amphitheaters only. Try to keep it in the "I still love Bon Jovi, Motley Crue, and Poison" subculture, and don't expect anyone else to do it. Nuff said.

Pot

I'm not a drug guy, I've mentioned this before. But I've smelled pot at almost every concert I've ever been to, and it's become such a concert staple, I get mad when the tokers take the night off. There's really no restrictions (other than offering it to twelve year olds) with pot, but any other drug is off limits for the public. Go snort your lines in the bathroom stall, drug dudes, the general audience doesn't want to see you living out your Tony Montana fantasies.

Section III: "That Guys" To Avoid

(Sorry ladies, That Gal, That Girl, That Woman, and That Chick just don't work as well as That Guy. It's not a sex thing, just a lingual one.)


1. That Guy Who Yells "Free Bird"

No excuse on this guy. Not only is that guy who yells it who is being serious a pain, but that guy who mocks the "Free Bird" guy has become just as damn annoying. I think the joking "Free Bird" yell was barred somewhere in the summer of 2003 time period. Originally, it was funny. Someone would do a mocking redneck voice and shout it out, and his buddies would laugh. But how old has this gotten? There was a stretch when I was shocked when this guy didn't show up at the show. Glad this has passed. And if you didn't know this had passed, you know now. In the words of the great John Lennon, "the dream is over."

2. That Guy Who Sings at the Decibels Higher than the Band

I used to always be afraid of being this guy, so I've started "power lip-synching." (I do all the movements and get really into it, but no sound actually comes out.) Has this guy ever ruined a show for you? He's right behind you, in your ear, he knows all the words to every song, and you can't hear the artist. And it's not like this guy was given the blessed vocals of Jim James. I mean, he's always the monotone, incredibly deep and unaware. As far as the "That Girls" it's always the high-pitched, annoying squeal girl who's too loud. Like the kind that sorority girls are stereotyped as in comedy sketches. Regardless, when this is happening, you really can't tell anyone to shut up and quit singing along, right? You gotta move. I know, it sucks, but unless you're comfortable doing the "Ross Gellar Bring it Down a Few Notches" hand signal, you gotta go up or back a few rows.

3. That Guy Who Gets Too Drunk

Do I need to go in-depth here? Know your limit, it'll help you not look like an ass.

4. That Guy Who Loves the Opening Band and Gets Mad at the Crowd for not Caring About Them

Last summer, in Las Vegas, my buddy Chris and I caught a Red Hot Chili Peppers show with Weezer opening. There was this guy in front of us who was a diehard Rivers Cuomo follower and was jamming out and enjoying the hell out of some Weezer. At first, I was glad he was having such a good time, he was so into it. But the rest of the crowd wasn't really getting too pumped, so he felt it was his turn to play "concert director." He kept throwing his hands in the air for everyone else to start jumping and fist pumping and when nobody would, he pulled out the "this crowd sucks" card and kept screaming to everyone about how lame we were, which pretty much killed any hope that the crowd would at some point put their arms around one another and sway in unison to "Say it Ain't So." The point is, if you're in the audience, your job is to worry about how much fun you are having, not everybody else. We aren't lame because we don't care for "We're All on Drugs," you're lame for wanting us to.

5. That Guy Who Yells Out Which Song the Artist Should Sing Next

I know, we've all been this guy before. Just last week at that Band of Horses show, Rachael got scared we weren't going to hear "Monsters," and pulled this move. She's since apologized. But really, when a band continually looks down at its setlist, and has every song picked out, why the hell do you keep yelling at them to play some early B-side that only you know about? Do you really think Sufjan is in the middle of a set and thinks "Wow, I was really wanting to play 'Avalanche' next, but Jack Foster over there in the third row wants to hear "The Tallest Man..." so I'll go ahead and play that"? I know some bands take requests, and that's fine, but the majority of shows you go to have their sets planned out, so please let them. There's no reason, other than by yelling a song 89% of the audience has never heard of to look like Sammy Superfan, to do this.

Alright, as I mentioned earlier, this is just a start. A couple of "let's put this in writing to avoid bad concert behavior" rules to lower the bottles and heckles. There's endless angles and That Guys to Avoid out there, but these are the ones I find most important.

I'm going to try and sign off each column with separate TV and Sports paragraphs for those who enjoyed the off-music columns. This will help me concentrate on the music scene for the most part, while also writing about a few other things I enjoy.

Random TV Thought of the Week

The other night, Rachael and I were eating dinner with the TV on in the background and started watching Dancing with the Stars. We're not really Reality TV people, but they said that the Latino Lover Mario Lopez was next, so we figured for Screech and the gang, we'd watch his routine. As he danced, we cracked the "Why are you even trying, AC, you know Lisa's gonna win this thing with The Sprain" and "Uh oh, did you buy Jessi Raiders tickets again for your anniversary" jokes and had a good laugh. After his performance, they asked him what he thought and he told them...with a LATIN ACCENT. That's right, AC Slater is faking an accent to live up to this stupid Latin Lover gimmick. It's pathetic/hilarious. Do yourself a favor and check it out...then change the channel.

Random Sports Thought of the Week

Who saw Michigan coming this week? (editor's note: Me.) Not me, my money was on the Irish (don't worry, I won it all back on Louisville.) The funniest thing wasn't that Notre Dame played all that bad. Michigan is good. Damn good. That Michigan/Ohio State game is going to be a bloodbath, I can't wait. I didn't know Chad Henne had it in him, he looked amazing, as did Mike Hart. But it was how clutch their defense was that impressed me most. Every time Notre Dame would drive or look like they were going on a run, someone on that defense would make a play. Congrats, Wolverines, and best of luck. Hey Chris, are you boys throwing out the words "National Title" over there in Camp Michigan, or is it too early for all that? (editor's note: of course we are.)

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Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Safe Travels


My own awareness of Red Hunter began much like the larger-than-life American folk tales of Paul Bunyan, Johnny Appleseed and Davy Crockett. Friends and other musicians would tell me their stories of seeing a performance in a cemetery, on a construction site or in an empty loft. Chris would certainly agree with me that meeting Red/seeing a Peter & The Wolf performance is in no way a letdown. He somehow balances elements of himself (the traveler, the dreamer and the storyteller) and spills it out in these incredible settings.

As Chris returns from the Lone Star state's entertaining (to say the least) capital, Austin's own Peter & The Wolf offer up a track from their latest release. "Safe Travels" is the first mp3 released from the upcoming Lightness LP, the band's first on the Worker's Institute label.

"Lightness is a whole record about that feeling when you wake up all
sentimental from a dream and you want to call your friends and ask How is your health, how's your dad, how's travels? It is about those good mornings when you're just wishin' everybody well."


Red is a touring machine and will surely be near you in the next few months. Find him and wish him well.

- Garrison Reid of IndieInterviews

Mp3: "Safe Travels"
Mp3: "Red Sun" from IndieInterviews podcast
MySpace: Peter & the Wolf

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Joanna Newsom: Live in Austin



Joanna Newsom's unforgettable show last night will not only contend for the best show I've seen this year, it was one of the most memorable performances I've ever seen. The first thing I noticed being so close to the stage is how strikingly small Ms. Newsom really is, and watching her tiny hands deftly maneuver around her harp is a sight to behold. It seems like it would be nearly impossible, physically, that on songs like the over 16-minute long "Only Skin" (which she introduced as "the long one"), she's able to possess such control over her instrument while recalling all of the lyrics. In fact, I'm still not sure I believe what I saw. Not sure of the exact setlist (help me out) but from memory, she played 3 songs from Ys ("Emily", "Sawdust and Diamonds", & "Only Skin") and mixed in a few crowd favorites from The Milk-Eyed Mender, including "Book of Right On", "Sadie", and the gorgeous show-closer, "Clam Crab Cockle Cowrie." Watch a video I shot of part of "Sadie" here.




click read more link to view more photos from the show...







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Cat Power: Live at the ACL Studios


the view from our seats

In possibly the greatest single night in the history of this blog, we were somehow able to see Cat Power's incredible ACL taping and Joanna Newsom's absolutely awe-inspiring performance at The Parish here in Austin (more on that tomorrow). Chan seemed extremely comfortable (relatively speaking) with multiple cameras all up in her grill, and her voice was absolutely pristine in that studio. Here's the setlist...we left about 10 songs in to make it to the Joanna Newsom show.



also:

I was unable to get any shots at the Sufjan/Raconteurs ACL taping, but the wonderful people at Austin City Limits hooked us up with these amazing photos, taken by the great Scott Newton:

(courtesy of KLRU-TV and Austin City Limits; click for larger image)




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