Sunday, October 29, 2006

HAIL SATAN!

Last night John and I saw The Mountain Goats at Rubber Gloves in Denton. It was my first time at Rubber Gloves, and the more I get to know Denton, the more I like it. Its not that hard to get to (just go straight forever, until the exit) and people there are pretty nice. Where as in Dallas, you have your nice people, but for every nice person, there are about three that aren't so good. I'm not sure if I like Hailey's or Rubber Gloves more. They've both been pretty good to me. I think someone was having a Halloween party in Denton because there were a few people that were dressed up. I was a little jealous, but John and I are having one next weekend and its going to be the envy of all Halloween parties. John and I had our annual trip to QT after the show, and there were these girls dressed up like firefighters, and this semi-drunk man at the check out was trying to "holla at 'em" and Chong, the cashier at QT accidentally dropped this fine, upstanding gentleman's change, and the guy made a big deal of it, and then turned to me and said "Those girls was fine right!?" Me: "Oh...yeah. Definitely!" There's always tension at that QT! Always!

Before the opening act, this beer man came around the back of Rubber Gloves and asked someone (I think it was just some random person in the crowd) where he should put all of these cases of beer. He looked really nervous, so I thought I should make the situation even more awkward by taking his picture. I even took two of them, because the first one wasn't to my liking. He just stood there and had to let me take his picture. He has this look on his face like, "Ohh god I need a new job." What a trooper.


The opening act was Jennifer O'Connor. I hadn't ever heard of her before the show. She's on Matador, which is surprising because Cat Power and Mogwai (If I remember correctly) are both on Matador. Go figure. Her music wasn't really something that I could get into, but her guitar player was amazing. The beard, his playing; it all came together.



The Mountain Goats were not what I was expecting. One thing that I love about a live show, is banter, and as John put it, they were "masters" of it. They really know how to talk to people and I loved it. They were hilarious. Train tracks just so happen to be directly behind Rubber Gloves and during the beginning of their set, a train came down the tracks, blowing its whistle. As the train got closer (and louder) they too got louder and surprisingly, it added this nice effect to the song and I think everyone enjoyed it. I really wish that I had listened to more of them before the show. I only know a few of their songs, but I really like them. They played their song that mentions DFW and they played their song about the best ever death metal band in Denton, as the last song of the encore. John said something along the lines of, "We wrote this one so people out in Germany can know where your town is." It was nice to see them. After every song, when we were all cheering for them, they looked so happy.








The next post should be about the Halloween party that John and I are throwing. Its going to be a party to end all parties. I would be jealous if I was reading this and wasn't invited (which you probably are if you live near) or couldn't come, or just won't come (you're crazy). I think there's going to be mini-golf, costumes (for sure), sing alongs, and a lot more so come or be jealous forever.

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Viva La Canada?

Last night I saw Broken Social Scene in the Gypsy Ballroom. Despite all of the negative things that I can say/all of the complaining I could do about the staff of the Gypsy, the show was pretty great. John and I got to the show about an hour before the doors were set to open and we were about 20 people back in the line. I was going to go about two and a half hours before hand, but we still ended up on the front row. While waiting in line, the goon security guard, who was checking ID's and flirting with girls, told me that I couldn't bring my "pro-camera" into the show! Ahhh I hate not being able to have my own photos from a show but I guess its okay, because Broken Social Scene's two (or so) hour set last night really made up for everything else that went a little off course. MJ and his friends met up with John and I before the show started. Its always nice to be around good people.

The first band, Do Make Say Think, was pretty good. I meant to listen to them before hand but didn't. They were a pleasant surprise. I didn't expect an instrumental band, but I guess I didn't really know what to expect. I think they played for an hour or so. I will post their set list after I scan it. (I had a BSS setlist, but I will talk about that later.)

First off, let me say that seeing Broken Social Scene for my birthday was a really good thing. If John uploads the photos that he took from his phone, then I will put them on here. One thing that would have put the show over the top, would have been if Leslie Feist had been there with them. I thought she would come out eventually, but sadly, no Feist. They did however, have Amy Milan of Stars with them. Their set was full of songs that I love, like 7/4 Shoreline, Bandwitch, It's All Gonna Break, Fire Eye'd Boy, Major Label Debut, Looks Just Like the Sun, Stars and Sons (I believe), Lover's Spit, Anthems for a Seventeen Year-Old Girl, Cause=Time, Almost Crimes (one of the best), KC Accidental, Hotel (one song that for me, was the most fun to hear. Kevin Drew called it the "dance portion of the show" before they played it, and that's exactly what I did; dance.), Ibi Dreams of Pavement, Superconnected, a long improvised song after the encore (KC Accidental), and I'm sure I'm leaving something(s) off.

I really love how they all pretty much switched instruments at least a few times throughout the set. It's pretty different to see members of the same band playing multiple things during a live set and I really liked it. They had two drummers at some points during the show, which is pretty impressive. It does however seem to be a popular thing to do recently (M. Ward, Some Girls, Do Make Say Think, and BSS have all done it). Again, I really really wish that they would have had Feist with them, but you can't win them all I guess. Amy Milan did add a nice touch and I was pretty sure that they would have her along on this tour. Kevin Drew said that they played in Dallas exactly a year ago, and it was nice to celebrate this pseudo-anniversary and my birthday all in the same day. Towards the end of the set, Kevin gave us all a little therapeutic moment. He was like "Hey! Yell out any name of any person that you are having a hard time with! I promise it will make you feel better!" which was pretty nice. He then called out some guy who wasn't "into it" enough and they put the spotlight on him and he got really nervous. Then he did one of those "On the count of three, everybody say "fuck this"!" moments.

As I mentioned earlier, I would have had a setlist, but (!) one of the goon security guards took mine from me. I took it after their last song, because I knew that they didn't need it anymore. I didn't see anyone else going for it, so I took it. The guy saw me take and came over, tapped me on the shoulder and grabbed it from me. After the encore, Kevin Drew was giving them away and John went over to the security guard who took it from me (it was sticking out of his pocket) and asked him if we could have it. He refused like the jackass he is. Overall, Broken Social Scene was spot on. The combination of their large number of members, with their ability to play well together (its a surprise that all of those sounds don't bleed together) really does it for them. I can say that I enjoyed their live show more than I enjoy their recordings (don't get me wrong, they're great). Kevin said that they won't be back for a while, so I'm really glad that I was able to see them while I had the chance.

Paul is recording more for his album this weekend and I'm also seeing the Mountain Goats at Rubber Gloves in Denton as more of my extended birthday present. Expect more posts soon.

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Interview with Jamie Stewart of Xiu Xiu



JS:hi i am wasted this might be unreadable
sorry

GL:Since Friday the 13th was just upon us,
I thought it might be appropriate to ask
if you have any superstitions.
That being said,
does Jamie Stewart have any superstitions?
JS:so many it is stupid

i love th numbers 3 4 7 12 13 17 21 23 27 31 34 27 29 40 52 48
i hate 26 i ahte cats crossing the street in front of me ,
i hate ladders, i love flowers,
i hate everything that makes me think that something bad is
going to happen. i edit everysong based on the above numbers.
that is why we are debatlable.

GL:Since I first saw the cover art for The Air
Force,
I've been
wondering what it might mean.
Does it relate directly to the music on the alb
um
or is there something else behind it?

JS:it means why has the murderous right wreaked the the idea of love thy
neighbor and made it be about greed and war and bigotry.

GL:What first inspired you to make music
and how has that changed or evolved over the years?

JS:to keep from killing myself (sorry booze makes theeeeeeee truth come out)
lame!

GL:Since I'm from Texas (a state that seems to be either loved or hated)
what have your favorite and least favorite things been about the state?

JS:that it is full of so many fucking assholes and also so few but pure sweet
people and also home to the scissor tail fly catcher.

GL:In your opinion, would you say that beauty is relative
and up to
the observer to decide,
or do you think that there is an aesthetic
standard? (John's question)
JS:toattlly both. i think beauty and evil and sex and love and ugly are so mixed up
it is great and stupid
genet vs cooper vs bjork vs deerhoof vs fucky shit vs i never read foucualt
vs phillip gelb vs lynn johnson vs nels cline vs ricky rachman

GL:To me, La Foret is a much more somber or darker album (for lack of better words)
than The Air Force. Was this a conscious shift or was it something else?

JS:life was not so bad in 2006 as it as in 2005. the killers look fat now
what happened?

GL:Who have you been listening to lately?
JS:carla bouzlich, disappeared okinawa folk music, kool kieth, basinski (sp?)
the cure, bartok, barr talking, david playing the shakuchachi,
belle and sebastien (embarrasingly) and the knock of the pizza cog

GL:How do you feel about The Air Force being leaked on the internet?

JS:fuck the thieves

GL:I think Xiu Xiu fans might like to know, what is "jazz"?

JS:for real music people it is up to you to decide for jock dicks it is
wynton
marsallies

GL:In closing, have you ever tried to grow a beard/had one,
and what
happened if the answer(s) are yes or why not if they are no?
JS:yes. when my car got exploeded and i had to leave it for a week in
bishop, ca i decieded to grow a beard in protest to being fucked by assholes. i
just looked like i am dirty. men with beards are unattrachtive to me
instantly . james morrison the artist would be very attachtive with no beard.
fuck portland.

GL:By the way, I'm a fan of beards.
JS:i love you do mean breasts or beards?

Monday, October 16, 2006

Why didn't he remember to rap about beards?

Tonight was Electric President, Astronautalis, and Alias & Tarsier at Good Records. All in all, it was pretty enjoyable. Ashley joined me up there a little bit before the show started because we both didn't want to go alone! First to play was Electric President, the only one of the bands that I had ever heard before the show. I enjoyed their set, although it did seem a little shorter than all of the others. They are playing at Hailey's on Tuesday but I went to the in-store because I wouldn't be able to go to the show. I thought they were playing when I got up to the store because I could here them from outside but they were just going through sound check. I had about 30 minutes or so to browse the store, and I'm glad I did because it was only the second time I had been there, and the last time I saw the Yeah Yeah Yeahs, which was packed. Anyway, Electric President was good. They played Insomnia, Good Morning Hypocrite, Ten Thousand Lines, and another song that I didn't know (but don't quote me on all of that).






Next, was Astronautalis and I was surprised. I really had no idea what to expect but I guess that was good. He is a rapper/singer/guy who can talk/sing really fast. He was also very funny. He set aside some time in his already short set to freestyle. He wanted us to know that he hadn't made anything up ahead of time so he had us pick some topics for him to rap about and he chose:

1. Queen Latifah
2. Gangrene
3.The Skunk Ape
4. New York from Flavor of Love
AND LAST BUT NOT LEAST, MY REQUEST
5. Beards

So he's going through his freestyle (which had a slow jam beat) and he's getting towards the end and he FORGETS TO RAP ABOUT BEARDS.
I mean come on. That was the most important topic! When he finished, he said "So yeah I think that was all of 'em" and I shouted out "BEARDS!" and he was like "OH SHIIIIIT DAMN!" But, despite his forgetfulness, he's still an okay guy in mybook.




After Astronautalis, there was Alias & Tarsier. Apparently, their set was "chillllll", which they claimed was the theme of the night, in honor of Electric President. I was going to leave after a couple of their songs (Ashley left after one) but once they started playing, I figured that it might be nice to just sit down and leave when they were done. I wouldn't really want people to leave in the middle of my set. They were alright. Not too many funny jokes or anything, just a quiet set. I'm so glad that I've been getting back into the swing of things.





NEXT POST: I will be posting my interview with Jamie Stewart of Xiu Xiu. Yes that's right. Keep in touch for more.

Sunday, October 15, 2006

Kittens! Eels...

Last night I saw Rosie Thomas, Damien Jurado, and David Bazan at Hailey's. I think I was probably the only one in my whole group who hadn't seen any of these people before, but I enjoyed it. The picture to the left is just another documentation of Paul, at a show, wearing a fanny pack. After the show, John, Mary Anne, and Paul were discussing some issues that they had with David Bazan and I think I may have had it better because they had expectations that Bazan didn't necessarily live up to. I had just started to listen to Bazan's solo recordings (formerly of Pedro the Lion) earlier on in the week. Overall, I enjoyed myself, but I'll get into details in a little bit.

On our way to Denton, we picked up Dave, Mckena, and Paul at U.D. in Irving and then made our way up there. This was only my second time in Denton (my first time was seeing M. Ward a few weeks ago) and I think I like what I've seen. Its not bad. When we got there, we parked in the same exact spot as last time and walked over to J&J's Pizza and Mary Anne and I sat around while everyone else ordered because we weren't hungry. Brittany came up there to hang out for a little bit. Its always nice to see old friends. I also ran into Sean and talked to him for a second. He was going to see Man Factory who was playing downstairs at J&J's.

At about 8:45 Mary Anne, Brittany, and myself started to walk over to Hailey's because we were pretty sure that there would be a line, and there was. I was a little bit worried about how I was going to get pictures, but I shouldn't have been. I love it when people outside my conversation are listening, and they laugh at one of my jokes. Its great. I was expecting to see a wall of people when we got inside, but there wasn't, so Mary Anne and I just took a seat at the front left of the stage. After a while, John and the rest of the group made their way through the line and came up front with us. After some waiting, Rosie Thomas took the stage and I was impressed. She had a really nice voice and is hysterical. Little did I know, but she is actually a stand-up comedian, performing under the name Sheila Saputo according to Wikipedia. If you hadn't heard, Pitchfork announced that she was having a baby with Sufjan Stevens, but it was actually just an April Fools joke. Here are Rosie Thomas' top three Halloween costume ideas:

3. "Steve Guttenberg, either from Police Academy or Three Men and a Baby. Your choice. And you can just call yourself, "The Gute")


2. Fog. "When you go to the party, and you have to ring the doorbell, and your friends come to the door, you can just be like "Whoosh!" and when they ask what you are.."I'm fog dude."

1. In a diaper. "This one might not be a good idea for the females, because you can only wear the diaper. No socks...nothin'... "I'm going as the diaper."





After Rosie Thomas, there was Damien Jurado. His music was no big surprise, but it was alright. He had a cello player and a guy on electric guitar, and the guy on electric played drums sometimes, and Damien even jumped on the kit at the end of the set. I hadn't heard him before the show but he wasn't bad. He sounded a little bit like Sam Beam of Iron & Wine. His cello player made a funny little joke to poke fun at Damien having said that he would either "see us later, or not" because you have to have the good with the bad. She then said "Kittens! Eels... I hate eels" and I liked that. I want to hear more from him.




My favorite performance of the night came from David Bazan. His voice is something else (in a good way) and his music is pretty good. He was pretty charming. After he would play a few songs, he would ask the audience if we had any questions and people just started shouting things out and he would do his best to answer them. I thought that was really funny and one of the things like I like about a live show is the interaction between the audience and the performer. He had a near perfect balance between the two, but he was a bit longwinded at points. He played songs from Pedro the Lion, Headphones, and his solo material. He said that this was a really unique experience for him because he couldn't remember a show where the crowd had sang along with him as much as they did last night, which was true. Everyone, at one point during his set, was singing along to the songs and I really enjoyed that. I sang along to the few songs that I knew and I liked hearing everyone elses voices along with his. "Hey David, how many near-beers have you had?" "I think 9. That's almost one real beer."





I will be at Good Records tomorrow (October 16), seeing Electric President perform in store before their show at Hailey's on Tuesday (which I'm not going to). John may post a review of the Built To Spill show on Thursday (October 19). Octopus Project is playing at The Modern Art Museum of Ft. Worth on Friday (October 20) but I doubt I will be able to go to that. John is then playing another show at The Door in Dallas on Saturday (October 21) with John Boswell. Then my birthday is the 23rd and then Broken Social Scene is the next day so I'm going to have a lot to post this next week or so.

Monday, October 09, 2006

Too Much Coffee

Well I just got home from seeing Jonny the Wham and John Boswell play at Standard and Pours, a coffee shop at South Side On Lamar. I'd never been there, or heard of it for that matter, but it wasn't all that bad. I drove up to the place and I saw the Pandarosa crew walking across the street to S&P and I asked Dave and Alison where to park and they told me to park "on the other side". I acted like I knew what that meant and drove around, confused for a couple of minutes, but I finally realized what they meant and found a spot. I got there a little early and started to mess around with my camera equipment. I should have taken my laptop, because the place had free WiFi! I did, however, leave my blog up on one of their in-house computers after the show. Ha!

Anyway, John Boswell played first, and despite all of the time that I've spent at the studio, I hadn't heard him until tonight. I really wish that he had plays a cover. Personally, I think that most musical acts should play a cover when they play live. Oh well! Jonny the Wham pla
yed an awesome cover, but I will get to that later. Boswell played with a backing band, consisting mainly of the members of Jonny the Wham, give or take one or two. Boswell also played without shoes, singing songs about National Geographic specials and songs to his significant other, who shares a love of the television show Scrubs with John Thomspon and myself.

After Boswell played, Jonny the Wham took the stage. I really enjoying hearing these guys play. Its really good stuff. I've heard most of their songs, either from the studio or from their practices. He had his sister, and my friend, Mary Anne, sing with him on one of their songs. I don't think I'd ever heard her sing by herself, but I knew she was really good. Before they played their set, John told me they were going to play a cover during their set. He called it "pretty indie" and said that he didn't think anyone would know what song it was, but it turns out he was kidding, because they played 'Crazy' by Gnarls Barkley. He certainly didn't reach those original notes, but I enjoyed their version of the song. I think the last time I heard that song, it was an improvised version played by Chan Marshall at Austin City Limits.

After the show, I followed Dave and Alison to where we were supposed to be meeting the rest of the group to eat, but they thought they were following this person
in front of them, but it turns out that it was just some random car. So after we drove through the better part of downtown Dallas, we ended up at Cafe Brazil in Deep Ellum. Once we were all settled in our seats, John and and I realized how long this past week has been. We were sitting in the Cafe Brazil on 75 last Saturday night after my failed attempt to get into José González. Its really nice to be surrounded with good people. I shouldn't drink so much coffee, but the bottomless cup is just too hard to pass up. I had three big pancakes. I'm also someone who can't pass up a good late-night breakfast. I screamed at John and Mary Anne as I passed them on the highway. I came home with coffee jitters and its not too good because I have to get up early in the morning, but I've been able to finish this without getting tired. I hope I don't wake up "grumpy".

John Boswell (more tomorrow, after I upload pho
tos from my other camera):

Jonny the Wham: