Monday, October 25, 2010

Take two, same loot; make something so new

Single Barrel Detroit's got a brand new installment up featuring Child Bite at the Theatre Bizarre grounds. They contacted me about tagging along and writing some stuff about it - an offer I gladly accepted. I escaped the whole "city of Detroit causes Theatre Bizarre to be cancelled/moved" drama this year by virtue of not attending. By the feedback I've seen and heard so far, the last-minute-move-to-the-Filmore seems like it was pretty successful. I am glad to hear it, though it's hard to imagine this, seeing as the best part about the event is the location itself. It would be like if the Renaissance Festival were moved from the grounds in Holly to the Rock Financial Showplace. Yes, you could have the event there, but it's just wrong. At any rate, I hope that the Theatre Bizarre people start wrangling with the city of Detroit now so that everything is in proper order for next year.

Here's a video from the Single Barrel Detroit show - check out the link above for two more videos and my little write up. And if you have not heard it yet, make sure you check out Child Bite's new record
The Living Breathing Organ Summer - one of the best of 2010.

Paws Perilous from SINGLE . BARREL . DETROIT on Vimeo.

Friday, October 22, 2010

October spawned a monster

While a great deal of you will be doing something Halloween related this weekend such as traipsing around Theatre Bizarre or eating free Mexican zombie burritos at the Magic Stick, I will be in Mount Clemens. Why? Because of this: The Smiths United are a Smiths/Morrissey tribute band. And I've always wanted to see a Smiths/Morrissey tribute band. The closest I've ever come is seeing Prussia as the Smiths at the first Crofoot Creepy Cheapy Halloween show. And they were fantastic - they even did "Cemetry Gates." I don't even know if this Smiths United business will be any good. But I have to go. Why "Detroit's Premier Smiths/Morrissey Tribute Show" is having their first ever gig in Mount Clemens is still a mystery to me, but considering I'm likely to make a total fool of myself at this show, I guess I'm not terribly sad it is in a city far away that I would never otherwise go to. Because then there will be no proof.

Friday, October 15, 2010

"We need a black pope and she better be a woman"

A list of those who know better than to fuck with
Robyn and/or Snoop Dogg:

The French

The Vatican

The Russians




The Prince of Darkness

The whole industry

A list of those who should know better than to fuck with Robyn and/or Snoop Dogg:


Please make a note of it.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

120 Minutes Weekend

Do you remember 120 Minutes on MTV? Specifically the very early 90's when dreamy Brit Dave Kendall was the host? It was on really late on Sunday nights, and I would either stay up and watch or set the good ol' VCR to record it. It really shaped my musical tastes in a way that is still evident to this day. That's why I'm dubbing this weekend 120 Minutes Weekend!

Friday night at the Magic Stick, former Afghan Whigs frontman Greg Dulli is playing a solo show. The videos for "Turn On The Water" and "Conjure Me" - both tracks from Congregation (still my favorite Afghan Whigs record, sorry Gentlemen fans) were 120 Minute staples. Whether he plays AW songs or not, I don't care - I'm just excited to finally get a chance to see him live.

Saturday night Helmet is playing at Small's. Their video for "In The Meantime" was one of my favorites in heavy rotation on 120 Minutes. Because of that video, I bought their record Meantime and played it incessantly. Though I am aware that they have records other than Meantime, that's the only one I really know well. I expect my ears and my nostalgia to be pummeled plenty.

Now if only we could get
Kitchens Of Distinction and the Boo Radleys to reform and play Detroit in a single weekend... Fingers crossed.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Wonder Twins: Jello Biafra and the Guantanamo School of Medicine at Small's

Today's brand new Metro Times tree pulp pamphlet spectacular features yet another (embarrassing at best) Wonder Twins exclusive super scoop. This time around we went to Small's aka the den of punk rockian sin to see the immortal Jello Biafra - still in full brazen force after all these years. It was D'Anne's first punk show. I have a weird feeling it won't be her last. She left with a Buzzcocks patch safety pinned directly through her back. Oi! Oi! Oi!

Saturday, October 9, 2010

It's not WKRP, but it's still pretty rad

Local boys Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr. just did a pretty sweet in studio set at KEXP in Seattle... Check out this link for way more video.

Friday, October 8, 2010

You are hot, hot, hot, hot, hot

I'm very excited about this new Blue Water White Death album. Xiu Xiu's Jamie Stewart and Shearwater's Jonathan Meiburg are two of my favorite, favorite, favorites. The fact that they're combining forces is totally what I would make them do if they were on my indie rock fantasy team. You know, like fantasy baseball. Even though I have no idea how fantasy baseball works really.

The video they've just released for the song "Grunt Tube" is Jamie Stewart's creation - not surprisingly, it is a little creepy and features what are probably some grainy close up sexy time shots - I'll leave that for the avid porn watchers to figure out for sure. Stewart says the video features, among other things, "Taping quotes from books about the CIA’s involvement in Afghanistan, gay life in Japan, and early, early 4AD records." Anybody who knows me can already attest to the fact that those are the only three things I care about. Triple win!

Though I don't know if Blue Water White Death will be touring, Mr. Meiburg WILL be in town pretty soon with Shearwater. They'll be playing the Magic Stick on November 14 with Damien Jurado. I've seen Shearwater once before and they were tremendous. So go to that.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

So tonight at the Magic Stick, this is happening. You should go. It will be rad. Also, this Shawn Knight designed poster is awesome.

Friday, October 1, 2010

Zola Jesus for President. No wait - Zola Jesus for JESUS.

This past Wednesday, Zola Jesus made her first Detroit appearance in a performance at the Contemporary Art Institute of Detroit. Her set started a little after midnight, and was relatively brief. Brief but amazing. Which was a huge saving grace since everything leading up to her set was hardly passable, let alone amazing.

Zola Jesus, for those who don't know, is tiny. Very tiny. She is also apparently 21 years old or so. For a voice like that to come out of a girl of that stature and age is astounding to me. She had a band with her - three guys on synths/keyboards and a drummer. Think The Cure circa Disintegration with a powerhouse female vocalist with the commanding presence of somebody much larger. Wow.

Now, I don't want to be one of those "I hate the CAID" people. I don't hate it, and the institution itself is not my main gripe here. But I can't help but question why, somebody who's as critically acclaimed and talented as Zola Jesus has to make her Detroit debut here as opposed to someplace you know, way better. Like virtually all other music venues in the city. Especially since this show was presented by the Crofoot. Which, last time I checked, had several ROOMS worth of way better music venues, all of which have better sound and lighting than the CAID. I mean, maybe there was some discussion and Zola Jesus personally said, "I refuse to play anywhere but the most obscure of art galleries that also double as music venues - preferably ones with questionable security and a history of runs ins with the police." It's possible, right?

But even so - you've got ZOLA JESUS playing your obscure art gallery. So you know, maybe step it up a notch and pull together a killer show. I think this is a reasonable request - not to mention a prudent marketing and financial decision. The caliber of Zola Jesus' performance was so far above and beyond the two other bands on the bill that it seriously felt disrespectful and embarrassing - like Detroit couldn't be bothered to bring out some of (even one of!) its many fucking awesome bands to play this show with her. Instead we got Wire Eyes (aka The Ramshackle Bedroom Folk Sniffles) and Turn To Crime (aka Hey Check Out My New Noise Act Don't You Like Wavves Too?). Oof. The first band was anemic (they announced they all had colds when they started playing but I have a hard time believing they're usually more dynamic) but were at least listenable. The second act was embarrassing. Maybe I'm not cool enough to pretend being terrible is awesome. But give me a break.

And another thing... this is the second Something Cold related event I've attended now. The first one being a show where I was one of maybe three people not in one of the bands playing that night. I like the concept of this, and the guy in charge seems like a really cool dude with a love of music and Detroit and all that is good and fair. That's why I am presenting to you this little pro tip/because I care suggestion: You play/spin really great music. I actually love listening to your selections. But you are playing your shit WAY. TOO. LOUD. When there are four people standing around waiting for a band to start, don't crank it up so that those people can't talk or think. Because that's why they go wait in the other room. I don't think that's what you're looking for - in fact, on your Facespace page it says "Dancing...Dancing...Dancing... Everybody's dancing." No they are not. So you're ruining it for yourself and for all of us. It's a lose-lose! Turn it down!

Next time Zola Jesus comes to town, you need to go. And she needs to play someplace with a kick ass sound system and a working time keeping device. I hope it is sooner rather than later. I'm kind of obsessed now.

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