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Archives for 06/24/2007 - 06/30/2007

Saturday, June 30, 2007

For Eric

posted by on June 30 at 10:45 PM

Everybody Look What’s Goin’ Down

posted by on June 30 at 7:49 PM


I love Central Market. I love their fresh peanut butter making machine, I love the over-priced and colorful soap that you get to cut yourself, I love the fancy handmade truffles in the little case and the little boxes you can get to put them in, I love the bulk fresh maple syrup that tastes like liquid brown sugar, and I love the shelves and shelves of all the different kinds of Pocky.

I also love this sticker that’s stuck on one of the stop signs in the store’s parking lot, even though I always end up getting Buffalo Springfield stuck in my head because of it.

Here. Join me.

No Longer Booking at the Library. Ha.

posted by on June 30 at 5:26 PM

Sucks that Atlas closed or whatever, but seriously Seattle, cry me a river. I can’t reiterate how easy you’ve got it.

That sounds harsh, but I’m bitter. I spent my Friday night at the Library, another DIY all-ages venue, also booked in association with a thrift boutique, that was also invaded by the fire marshall and also forced to shut down until the space is up to code.


It’s literally a library, with towering shelves of dusty books as a backdrop for the acts. Nestled in the back of antique behemoth Sanford & Sons in downtown Tacoma, it was the perfect place to see five-dollar shows every Friday night. It was calculated dancing to avoid hitting $200 antique armoirs and gothic chandeliers. And I mean, the music was good.

Last night, however, was the end of all that. I got a big red “24” on my wrist while we were counted on the way in (no more than fifty people, including bands, allowed inside), and a sign reading “private party” was hung on the door in an attempt to fool the fire marshall. But those guys can’t be fooled. Antique libraries obviously don’t install sprinklers.

Continue reading "No Longer Booking at the Library. Ha." »


posted by on June 30 at 5:21 PM




posted by on June 30 at 3:13 PM

While the cops were shutting down Atlas in Capitol Hill, they were also hassling a touring band in Fremont.

The 10-member Albino! posse is currently touring in a white, tricked-out 1977 school bus. The bus was parked in front of Nectar last night, occupying the space that management keeps reserved for band vehicles. I watched the parking process—it’s not easy to parallel park a school bus—which they took seriously, making sure to fit in the space they were given.

Which is why, around 8:30 pm, the band was shocked to find a cop writing them a parking ticket for blocking the “working driveway” between Nectar and the Thai restaurant next door. They weren’t anywhere near the driveway, giving more than the five-foot clearance the cop claimed was necessary for unfettered access to the driveway. The band explained that they parked where they were told to park by management; the cop said they should talk to management, then, because he was already writing the ticket.

Only $38, thankfully, but written on the ticket was the word “Impound.” If the band didn’t move the bus back, now eight or so feet from the driveway—the cops were gonna tow it.

Both Atlas and, to a lesser extent, this situation, are symptomatic of a town more concerned with regulating its creative community than fostering it. It’s a moot question, but don’t the police have more important things to do on a Friday night?


posted by on June 30 at 2:54 PM


Two badass Afrobeat bands in town at two different venues meant last night was gonna be a marathon. And it was.

The night started with the Albino! taking over Nectar. Decked out in face paint, clad in robes and cloaks, the 10-member SF collective immediately got the packed crowd moving. Theirs is a more rustic sounding Afrobeat, a traditional Fela-esk, horn-driven rumble highlighted by a single lead vocalist’s gruff chants and singing. It’s heavy-duty stuff, funky as a rubber duck. But I’ve seen ‘em several times before, and the second band of the night was calling.

Over at the Tractor, NOMO was gradually coaxing a stiff, half-full crowd into shaking loose. And goddam, the eight-man (actually six-man, two-women) ChicagoAnn Arbor, Michagan crew was on motherfucking fire. Plugged into an amplified thumb piano a la Konono #1, rocking a four-piece horn section—including the aquatic skronk of dueling baritones—NOMO played a a monumental sort of superhero funk—a big, brassy soundtrack to soaring over Metropolis, saving the day. And it was rather Herculean that they were able to—by the end of their set—get the whole dance floor moving. But you had to be dead to not be shaking something—between their poppy, horn-driven melodies and the relentless rhythms coming from their percussionists, the music was like drugs.

The high only amplified when, for their encore, the band came out to the middle of the dancefloor, all horns and handclaps and percussion. A swaying circle quickly formed around them as the bassist led the crowd in a la-la-la-ing kinda chant, sweetly harmonizing with the horns. One by one the horns dropped out and the chant kept going, punctuated by percussion and handclaps. Soon the percussion was gone, and the whole room was chanting along in unison, clapping hands. It was an absolutely ecstatic moment, and then it was over. Fuck yeah. That’s the way to go out.

“Boycott The Stranger! Fuck Eric Grandy!”

posted by on June 30 at 2:53 PM

That’s exactly what the dozen MySpace bulletins and messages in my inbox have told me to do. And that is so disheartening.

Sadly, Atlas got shut down, but it wasn’t because of Eric Grandy’s story or The Stranger. It was because the venue wasn’t up to code, and that’s nobodies fault but their own. Grandy’s story was honest and well-reported (he worked his ass off trying to get all the facts, talking to volunteers and the store’s owner a number of times, and chasing people down to get all possible information). As Christopher pointed out, if Atlas really wanted to be covert, they wouldn’t have advertised shows all over the fucking city—in this paper, on the radio, on the internet, and via sandwich board where anyone walking by could peek in a see it was a warehouse hosting shows and that’s, well, not really okay. I have mentioned the venue a number of times in my column, with the blessing of the show’s promoters. Hell, I’ve been asked to write about shows there. They wanted kids to come out, they wanted people to know about it.

So before you get all up in arms and want to boycott The Stranger for crashing your party, maybe you should look at Atlas as an example. I’m sorry for sounding like a cliche, but learn from this, quit bitching, and take action. And when you do, remember what you’re getting into when you host all-ages show in a city that’s still very hungry for them. Like it or not, no matter how covert the mission, when you choose to put on shows, you have a responsibility too. You have the responsibility to take it seriously and do it right. Advertise or don’t. Be legit or be secret. You can’t have it both ways. If you choose to not bring things up to code, you’ll have to be as far under the radar as possible and even then you still have the threat of being closed down at any given minute with or without a story. And ultimately, that would not be The Stranger’s (or anyone else’s) fault. That’d be your own.

There’s a lot to learn here and there’s far too much energy being put into placing blame and killing the messenger. It’s really disheartening, actually. Clearly, Capitol Hill needs an all-ages venue. Hell, so does Ballard, Fremont, West Seattle, the University and Central Districts, Downtown, Shoreline, the list goes on and on.

I liked Atlas, I went there a number of times, and saw some great shows. I wanted it to last longer, but I also knew it would close down sooner rather than later. Not even because of the lack of being up to code, but because it was obvious that there was a lack of communication between the people putting a lot of heart into it and the store’s owner. Money needed to be made to keep it going (prime real estate, my friends) and money is hardly ever made in the “business” of all-ages music. I miss RKCNDY too. And the Velvet Elvis. And the Punkin House. And that one basement in West Seattle that I can’t remember the name of. And every other venue that has closed for whatever reason. I’ve been writing about all-ages music for The Stranger for five fucking years, I’ve been going to all-ages show for over a decade, and I’ve seen a lot of things come and go. But there will be more things to come around again. Because while there are some people focusing on throwing hissy fits, posting bulletins, boycotting, and throwing blame all over the place, there are other people quietly making things happen. And those people are the people who could really use your passion right now.

posted by on June 30 at 1:47 PM


Trainwreck Riders Show Cancelled

posted by on June 30 at 12:33 PM

Trainwreck Riders Hit By Drunk Driver

For those of you who have not heard (or maybe you have, and that’s why you’re here), we were side-swiped by a drunk driver late Saturday night/Sunday morning (6/24). Our van was flipped and rolled. Luckily (miraculously), the van itself and our equipment took the worst of it. As far as we can tell, we did not sustain any serious injuries - various scrapes and bruises, a broken arm, maybe a rib - sticks and stones stuff mainly. We feel very lucky to have been able to walk away from this sort of accident. The drunk driver was caught a few miles down the road.

We are bummed to announced that we will likely have to cancel the rest of our US Tour with The Black Diamond Heavies. We appreciate the Heavies’ understanding and support - their kind wishes, more than appreciated.

We are currently headed home to San Francisco, where we will spend some time to gather ourselves and maybe heal up a bit.

A genuine thank you to all who have taken an interest in our well-being, and rest assured, we will do our best to make it back on the road as soon as possible. If you’d like to make a donation to help out with some of the costs that we’re quivering at…

You can visit their website to make a donation.

Let Me Give You Motherfuckers Some Help

posted by on June 30 at 3:47 AM

A couple hours ago, three girls—“hipster rats,” as they were described by someone who saw the scene unfold—stumbled into the Northwest Film Forum, where there were some people standing around waiting for a party for a filmmaker to start. The three girls had words scrawled all over themselves in Magic Markers, mighta been drunk, and were evidently looking for any group of people to shout their message to. Their message, as shouted by one of them: “Don’t read The Stranger because The Stranger wrote about Atlas and now Atlas is shut down!”

Commenters to this Slog post about Atlas being shut down—at least comments by the people who’ve been volunteering their time to put on these all-ages shows at Atlas—are saying much the same thing. Here’s “Bummer”:

Tonight, Atlas was shut down by the fire marshall/police, DIRECTLY DUE TO THE ARTICLE WRITTEN IN THE STRANGER BY ERIC GRANDY. Atlas was given an unnecesarilly destructive review by this writer… The article…has ruined what we have been working on. THANKS TO THE STRANGER, capitol hill NO LONGER HAS AN ALL AGES VENUE… Boycott the Stranger. FUCK ERIC GRANDY… It takes a lot of work, dedication and time to put something on that you believe in. We are of the age to go to shows at bars yet our main concern was to have a place for kids to go conviently located in the middle of the city where they could listen to music. That is ruined. I am both angry and unimpressed with the lack of concern, compassion or understanding involved in this article going to print. We asked them not to. Please repost and help us in boycotting Eric Grandy as a writer and The Stranger as an irresponsible, gossiping, desperate music news source.

Here’s “oh mighty pen”:

Way to go, “Scoop” Grandy. Think you’ll pick up a Pulitzer for this? What was your motivation for that article, anyway?

“R” calls Grandy “Seattle’s music douchebag extraordinaire” and goes on:

You are such a no-nothing clown, that you couldn’t resist blowing your wad the moment you could report something that wasn’t just re-typing a Pitchfork press release. No Josh Feit prank is going to allow you to weasel yourself out of this one, shithead. You fucked up royal, and now you’re going to have to fess up to people that you can’t just mock on the internet and walk away from. Welcome to actually being part of the music scene and not just some pseudo-omniscient observer. Hopefully you’ll learn something from it.

That’s just the beginning. There are lots more.

OK, R, I’ll bite: let’s see what we have “learned” from this. You have a venue that’s doing interesting stuff—putting on all-ages shows in a neighborhood that, dense as it is, doesn’t have an all-ages music venue. In addition to local bands, they’re bringing in out of town acts. Good ones. (I know because a band that came from Portland to Seattle just to play an all-ages show at Atlas spent the night on my couches.) Sure, all the people who go to shows at Atlas know about it, and so do all their friends, but it’s still basically a secret. And people from other cities know about Atlas too, because they drive all the way to Seattle to play shows and sell t-shirts and CDs at Atlas, but still it’s, more or less, you know, a secret. Or “covert,” or something.

So, what do you do? Well, frankly, the cat’s already out of the bag, but if it’s important to keep the venue a secret, there are things you can do to keep your profile low. You probably shouldn’t advertise the shows on MySpace, because lots of people have MySpace pages. (Including douchebag journalists, douchebag fire dept employees, etc.) You probably shouldn’t let your shows be written about in newspapers, and if for whatever reason you’re happy to have your shows written about in newspapers, you probably shouldn’t let newspapers print the name and address of your venue because, like, all kinds of people read newspapers. (Even douchebags like journalists and fire dept employees.) And, OK, say you’re advertising shows on MySpace and happily letting newspapers print information about your shows—you still probably shouldn’t make posters and put them on light poles because, like, all kinds of people pass light poles every day (including douchebag journalists and douchebag fire dept employees). And if you’re advertising your shows on MySpace, letting your venue info be printed in newspapers, and postering all over the place for your shows, but you still want the whole operation to be secret, you probably shouldn’t set up an A-frame sandwich board on the busiest street near the venue (for example, Broadway) that says “SHOW TONIGHT” with, below that, a poster for whatever show is happening on a given night.

Because guess what? Once an A-frame sandwich board is involved, your venue is no longer a secret.

I understand why you’re blaming The Stranger—because you’re upset, because this thing you’ve been volunteering all this time to make happen has been abruptly shut down by municipal scolds, because you actually like music and believe young people should have a place they can see shows in a neighborhood that has no dedicated space for them—but, uh, guys? You realize how disingenuous and bankrupt your argument is, right?

Lemme give you a sense of this from Grandy’s perspective: I was frustrated that Grandy hadn’t written about Atlas sooner. The three full-time staffers in the music department at The Stranger—Zwickel, Grandy, and Seling—report to me, the arts editor, and I report to Dan Savage, the editor in chief. Dan Savage was frustrated that we hadn’t written about Atlas sooner. He said so in a staff meeting a couple days ago.

Newspapers exist to tell people what’s going on. What’s happening in the city where they live. What shows should they go spend money on, yeah, but also lots of other things too that have nothing to do with telling people what to spend money on—like what local bands are getting back together, what local clubs are consolidating booking responsibilities, what bands are making really interesting music but haven’t been signed yet, what the guy who does sound at the Crocodile is like as a person, and so on.

A venue that puts on all-ages shows in a neighborhood that doesn’t have an all-ages venue? That’s a story. Oh, and they’re figuring out a way to convince good bands to be involved? Wow, cool. And they have these meetings that are sort of like the meetings in communal punk houses, except that they’re getting stuff done? How exactly are they pulling that off? And the owner of the space is willing to take a risk on a far-fetched proposition (the economics of all-ages venues are brutal), in a neighborhood where most business owners are too worried about the bottom line (rent is expensive on Capitol Hill) to let cool shit happen, because he thinks it might actually be good for his business to be associated with all the awesome stuff that’s going on in the back room? Man, that’s fascinating.

Grandy has been sitting on this story for months. At least since February. Early on, his contact at Atlas—Matt Fuller, who has joined the disingenuous chorus in the comments of that other slog post—asked Grandy to wait before publishing the story until Atlas had had its inspection. Grandy agreed to wait until there was an inspection so long as Fuller kept in touch about how things were progressing. Then Fuller dropped out of contact. Phone call after phone call went unreturned. Around the office, I was pressuring Grandy and Zwickel to get the story into the paper, because lots of people were talking about the clothing-store-turned-music-venue, even people far outside of the music community.

For a while we were going to do the story and not tell anyone what the venue was called or what neighborhood it was in. Because, like, we respected what they were doing and had no interest in shutting them down. But, more and more that seemed unnecessary, especially because we were printing all the venue info in the music section week after week. And, you know, A-frame sandwich board. And because when Grandy called the owner of Atlas—the guy without whom any of this would have existed—he seemed happy to talk about what he hoped the shows were going to do for his clothing business and not worried about being written about. Meanwhile, Fuller—who’d told Grandy he’d keep in touch—had dropped out of touch, so it wasn’t as like he seemed to care a whole lot one way or another.

So we decided to print what we knew. Grandy was just doing his job—and he waited until there was a gun pointed to his head on this one. But sure, blame him, boycott him, “fuck him”—whatever you gotta do, Bummer. Cuz you’re right, Atlas getting shut down is all Grandy’s fault.

John from a band called the Quiet Ones just emailed a letter to the editor that starts:

Eric Grandy can suck my dick. Do you know what the best part about covert all ages shows is? The fact that they are fucking covert all ages shows. Thanks asshole for sacrificing other people’s entertainment to get something printed beyond your usual boring weekly column. I sat there last week reading that article, thinking about the show that I had booked there in two weeks with two touring bands thinking to myself “This shit head is going to ruin our show” and it fucking happened…

Then, 17 minutes later, not-so-quiet John from the Quiet Ones wrote another letter to the editor, this time to say:

Dan, if you need someone who isn’t a fuck wit (though I am when I’m drunk) to write instead of Eric Grandy, I have plenty of experience as an altweekly music editor and plenty more journalism experience. I can give you samples if you care.

Sure, John, we’d be glad to have you on board. But, uh, how would you feel about having your desk be right next to Grandy’s? Cuz he’s not going anywhere.

Friday, June 29, 2007

Blowing It

posted by on June 29 at 3:09 PM


Le Castle Vania, Chromatics @ Chop Suey

Poor Chromatics. They really should’ve gone on before Le Castle Vania at Club Pop last night. Chromatics’ Italo disco is certainly dance floor friendly, but it’s also pretty clean, minimal, and relaxed compared to the relentless bangers of Le Castle Vania’s DJ set. There was no way they were going to keep up that momentum, especially with 10 or 15 minutes of transition time between them. And, although the Chromatics are a totally awesome band, Le Castle Vania is the one with all the busy-patterned hoodie internet hype behind him—the crowd thinned noticeably after his set. Finally, and most importantly, the sound was totally fucked by the time Chromatics took the stage.

By the second song of Le Castle Vania (aka Dylan Eiland)’s set, the bass bins were blowing it, farting and rattling and sound like utter shit. It wasn’t obvious whether Eiland had blown them—I only got there as soon as his set was starting—but it was obvious he was pushing the sound system hard. The sound guy and the other DJs had to repeatedly get on stage and bring his levels down to keep the sound clear, and every time Eiland eventually ratcheted the mix back up. It’s strange, because I’ve never known the Chop Suey sound system to be anything less than overwhelming, at least for electronic acts and DJs.

Eiland’s set was relentless and seamless, moving from his own productions and remixes of Snowden and 120 Days to electro anthems by Mylo, Freeform Five, and Riot in Belgium to remixes of Bloc Party, Chromeo, and the Yeah Yeah Yeahs. His set was all anthems, really. The energy never dipped for a minute, the young, fashionable crowd went wild, storming and then surrendering the stage, and Eiland spent much of the set alternately head-banging and wiping the lopsided hair out of his face (hey, we’ve all been there). But his big climax—a one-two-three punch of the Gossip’s “Standing in the Way of Control” (Soulwax Nite Version, natch), the Rapture’s “House of Jealous Lovers,” and Daft Punk’s “Around the World”—lost much of its impact as Daft Punk’s thumping kicks came out as painfully blasted “thbbbbbts.”

Chromatics, joined by Glass Candy/Portland Italo svengali Johnny Jewel on bass, got in maybe three songs (including “Hands in the Dark” and “In The City”) before giving up. Their new singer was anemic and listless, and it occurred to me that the seeming interchangeability of Chromatics’ female singers doesn’t really speak all that highly of their contributions to the band. Initially, the Chromatics sounded great—perhaps Eiland had just been pushing the system too hard—but during their second song, blasts of static cut through their mix, overpowering their carefully cool sound. It was so much worse than the crackling DI boxes Jewel had to deal with at the Comet last Thursday—what must that man think of Seattle’s sound systems?—and after another song fraught with interference, the band apparently lost all sound whatsoever. Jewel twice leaned into the audience with his keyboard, inviting audience members to try to make a noise—it actually worked the first time, but then immediately cut out again—before packing it in. It was the second deflated climax of the night. The band stood on stage silent and awkward for another minute, before exchanging a sad, sarcastic high five.

Ride the Pony and Freak Out!

posted by on June 29 at 2:29 PM

As anyone who has sniffed around Slog at all lately knows too damn good and well, Pony (the temporary gay bar that sprung up in the corpse of the old Cha Cha only two days ago and is somehow already infamous) is the place for all gay and gayish see-and-be-scenesters, and God knows I’ll be there. (Wearing my new sunglasses! Have I mentioned them?)

But when I grow weary of the whimsy and the clown faced glory hole (ergonomically impractical though it is, designed four feet off the ground and bored in a six-inch-thick piece of brick wall), I will, ahem, Freak Out a bit over at the Capitol Club, where the ever delightful DJ Freakazoid will spin his very favorites, just for little old me. And little old you. So I encourage you to join me. Unless you’re stupid and horrible, which you aren’t, of course, unless you are, and if you are, or aren’t, you know who you are. So. Please respond accordingly. Thank you.

Freak Out! FREAK OUT!


New Setlist is Up (also: Why Should I Care?)

posted by on June 29 at 2:15 PM


The new episode of Setlist is up and running: Get on it.

Why should you listen? Because other than talking and playing songs by local bands that are playing this week, Megan and I are giving away TWO TICKETS to Fresh Fest ‘07!


“What,” you ask, “is Fresh Fest ‘07?”

Glad you asked, portion of my psyche!
This is Fresh Fest ‘07:

Chop Suey
Gabriel Teodros
Dyme Def
Hosted by Choklate
$7 adv.
8pm doors
All Ages / Bar w/ID


You have to listen to Setlist to find out how to enter, and you have to enter by Monday at noon, so get on it!

Thieving Bastards

posted by on June 29 at 2:12 PM

police-flash-lights.jpgWell, not on tour anymore.

Aranda, the band, had all their gear stolen in Sacramento, CA.

Last Thursday night, Aranda, from Oklahoma City, played at Old Ironsides in Sacramento. They were great guys who put on a great show. They played in front of a smallish crowd, made about $50 and were grateful for even that small amount.

Before they left town the next morning, they discovered all of their gear had been stolen, thus ending their tour before they were even half way through it and sending them home with all of their instruments gone.

Please look over this very extensive list of what was stolen and keep an eye out for it.

If anyone has any information about any of these items listed below please contact the band - here.

Thank you,
Jerry Perry
Old Ironsides Bookings

List of the gear after the jump.

Continue reading "Thieving Bastards" »

Klubb Disko

posted by on June 29 at 2:11 PM

Hello, my name is TJ and I was recently asked to contribute to Line Out. I’ve recently moved to Seattle and most of my writing can be found over at my other blog, American Athlete. From here on out I will be posting similiar stuff to what I discuss on the American Athlete site, which is basically a blog that discusses new and classic disco records, artists, producers, and record labels. What I mean by “disco”, because the word has been used so loosely as of late, is the music from the early days of the legendary Paradise Garage and The Loft nightclubs in NY, along with the new disco edits coming out of New York, Norway, Japan, and the United Kingdom, including classic italo disco from the early to mid ‘80’s. I love dancing and I love dance music, however I feel like people don’t listen to good disco anymore and clubs nowadays are more focused on Hip-Hop, Electro, Top-40, Glitch, or whatever genre a creative DJ can come up with. With that said, I would like to share some of the classic disco songs that I enjoy and that, in my opinion, aren’t getting their fair due in the clubs anymore. Some of the posts will be repeative of what I posted on my other blog and some posts will be exclusive to this blog.

Enough of the intro.

I’ll start off with one of my favorite releases of 2007. A couple months back, Norway’s Rune Lindbæk released Klubb Kebabb. This nine track LP was released off of Idjut Boy’s Noid Records, and contains a collection of re-edits from old disco gems to modern radio pop songs. For instance, one of the standout tracks is a re-edited version of Toto’s “Africa”, which never sounded so good as it does on this album. Even though it’s safe to say this record is “all over the place” as far as sound and orginality, their is no doubt that this is one of the best releases of the year.

Rune Lindbæk - Soper Star
Rune Lindbæk - Franz Tranz

Positive Negative

posted by on June 29 at 12:24 PM

Today at the Stranger we received the new memoir by Floyd Landis, the 2006 Tour de France winner who had his medal stripped due to controversial doping allegations. The first thing I noticed about the book is how much this guy looks like Isaac Brock.


Lanids claims he was screwed, and that even though he won the race legit the “unchecked governing bodies of cycling” are determined to talk shit about his pretty sunset. We’ll probably never know the real story. Or at least I won’t: I’m not going to read this book. The only thing more boring than watching dudes ride bikes for a month is reading about it.

“I’m Sure You’ve Seen Better, But for You I’ll Do My Best”

posted by on June 29 at 12:00 PM


Ari brought up Two Gallants’ new EP The Scenery of Farewell. That’s my cue to gush.

There are no better songwriters working today than Two Gallants. Adam Stephens’ razor-wire voice is the perfectly damaged vehicle for his broken blues storytelling, archetypal folktales of departure and loss and big cities and wide country. He brings to mind early Dylan not in his tone but in the fact that his isn’t a good voice but it’s the only one you can imagine singing these words. You like the Decemberists, you like Okkervil River, you like Bright Eyes? Literate bands, all, but Two Gallants have them beat. This stuff is ruined, raw, unprecious, and unrepentent. Fucking young guys, the both of them, but there’s so much living packed into these songs.

The Scenery of Farewell strips down those songs acoustically and then beefs them up with extra instruments—upright bass, piano, marimba, shaker, fiddle—making for some real barroom/bordello kinda swing. Ari’s right—opener “Seems Like Home” is the strongest number, timeless, one of the all-time best songs to sing while you’re drunk. (At Sasquatch a friend and I stumbled around the campgrounds the night after the Gallants’ set, bawling “Seems Like Home,” sharing a bottle of Jameson with randoms. We eventually found the Gallants’ camp and shared some with them. It was a great night.)

But “All Your Faithless Loyalties” is a live favorite that strains drummer Tyson Vogel’s brittle voice on backup in all the right ways, and “Lady” is a tale of San Francisco regret that hurts in a beautiful way. “Linger On,” the closer, is boosted by profoundly dramatic piano. These song’s are long and languid—six minutes, eight minutes—very slowly building to crushing climaxes, not as rollicking on “Seems Like Home.” They’re immediately evocative, but stretched out and fully developed they turn into mini tragic epics. This isn’t background music—the lyrics demand attention, the structure demands patience. It isn’t for everyone but once Two Gallants get under your skin, there’s no better itch to scratch.

Two Gallants open for Les Claypool on Tuesday of next week at the Showbox. Weird pairing, but if you’ve never seen them live you really ought to check them out. They slay.

It’s Way Better Than That Trace Adkins Bullshit

posted by on June 29 at 11:11 AM


Shane Tutmac, or Dolour fame, has a newish country project called Shane Tutmarc & the Traveling Mercies. They just released a record, I’m Gonna Live the Life I Sing About in My Song, and as of this morning, you can stream the whole thing for free via the band’s website.

If you like what you hear, they’re opening for Jeremy Enigk on July 20th at Chop Suey. Tickets are available through

And who’s Trace Adkins? Well Trace Adkins is this guy:

“Seems Like Home to Me” by Two Gallants

posted by on June 29 at 11:00 AM

Freaking adorable picture of Two Gallants courtesy of Plus One Music
Listen to the song here.
I really love writing this column because I am an expert offender at playing a song over and over again to a point most people would call “insane” but I call “love.” One time, when I used to sit in the editorial offices, I was listening to Leonard Cohen’s “So Long, Marianne,” for about an hour and Charles Mudede yelled at me from his next-door cubicle, “ARI SPOOL! I LOVE LEONARD COHEN, BUT THIS IS REALLY TOO MUCH!” I was listening on my headphones, but I guess Charles has really good hearing.

I keep a mental list in my head of the songs that I have been listening to on repeat, and then write them down next to the weeks that are my turn to do the column. I have like three lined up. They are all amazing songs. Trust me, I know. I get excited.

“Seems Like Home to Me” is the opening track off of Two Gallant’s new EP, The Scenery of Farewell, and I think it’s the strongest track on the record. It starts in this really anthemic way,
“Baby, let your light shine on me/ When I’m lost on the road/ You know you could set me free/You could ease my load/Days get so dark/I can’t hardly see/I’ve been gone so long/Seems like home to me.” After that part, some guitar starts in, and then another verse, and then the drums come in, “thump thump thump.” And then, at the end, a bunch of other people start singing along in the studio, and at the end the other people clap and a piano rings out one chord. Just listen to it. And then listen to it again, and again, and again.


posted by on June 29 at 10:51 AM

This album:


by this band:


Came out only a year before this album:


by this band:


Both were products of late-’80s Seattle but couldn’t be more different. Stylistically, sonically, lyrically, they might as well have come from different planets.

Queensryche still plays as Queensryche. They release the live double CD/DVD called Operation: mindcrime at the Moore on July 3. Nirvana’s Live! Tonight! Sold Out! was released last November; there are no plans for future Nirvana releases at the moment.

I’m not sure where this fits in:


Shorebirds in Olympia Sunday

posted by on June 29 at 10:37 AM

Olympia’s all-ages What You Got? Fest (started yesterday, going through Sunday), has tons of awesome shit happening, but one highlight I’m personally excited for is the Shorebirds show Sunday night (7:30 at the Capitol Theater).

Here’s a video I found on YouTube of their performance at Gallery 1412 back in April. I regret missing that show, but it just goes to show that Sunday should be awesome.

Im in Ur Blog Makin Ur LOLz!!1!

posted by on June 29 at 9:15 AM

After nearly pissing myself over LOLcats/ on the slog yesterday, a commentor and my friend Matt directed me to LOLmetal where the stupidly hilarious format is applied to absurd metal band photos.



Funny, right?

Now I’m obsessed. Everything I see becomes an LOL picture. So guess what I spent hours doing last night (Okay, it was more like an hour)?! I made more LOLs for u guyz!1! (And please don’t point out how pathetic it is, I am completely aware.)

Continue reading "Im in Ur Blog Makin Ur LOLz!!1!" »

Thursday, June 28, 2007

Powerpop Is Go

posted by on June 28 at 4:28 PM


Happy first birthday to the Seattle Powerpop Blog!

To celebrate a year in cyberspace (which is like six years in regular space), power-popping blogger Gary Miller is hosting a power-popping party at the Sunset tomorrow night. Things start popping at 9 pm and the lineup goes like this:

Sgt. Major
Dept of Energy
Shake Some Action
The Small Change
Andy Werth
The Knast

Each band will play their own tunes as well as pay homage to classic Seattle power-poppers by playing songs by the likes of Young Fresh Fellows, Screaming Trees, the Sonics, Harvey Danger, and more. Sounds like a powerful good time.

(I myself will be down the street watching NOMO go electro-Afrobeat all over the Tractor.)

Taken Out to the Ballgame

posted by on June 28 at 3:10 PM


Baseball and rock ‘n’ roll—as American as cocaine and hookers.

Many thanks to the fine folks at Barsuk Records (which is the next Sub Pop, don’tcha know, according to the Times) for sponsoring a day out at SafeCo Field yesterday. I joined label publicist Ever Kipp and several other full-time Barsukers, as well rockers Dave Terry, John Roderick, Heather Minton, and Phil Wandscher of the Sweet Hereafter, for what turned out to be a terrific game on a beautiful afternoon. Many beers were drank, many hotdogs were devoured, and a few crotch-waves were attempted. And hey, the Ms won in the 11th to sweep Boston in a three-game series! Go Mariners!

It was my first trip to SafeCo—what a great stadium. The view of the downtown skyline from behind first was sweet, but even better was the little nip of the Olympic Mountains that you get from the outfield bleachers.

I realized yesterday that baseball, to me, is all about sauerkraut.

That is, baseball comes down to eating hot dogs and hot dogs come down to sauerkraut, so really, when I think baseball, I think sauerkraut. Yeah.


Continue reading "Taken Out to the Ballgame" »

Yippee Ki Yay Motherfu…

posted by on June 28 at 3:04 PM

Live Free or Die Hard is the best movie I’ve seen all year. Srsly. I’m going to write a love letter to it on Slog, where a film review is more appropriate, but I wanted to rant about its one flaw here, in Line Out, because…

I hate it when filmmakers create an environment for a young person or a hip person or a rebellious person by throwing up random music posters—music posters that would never appear on the same walls in actuality. I hate it. I can’t think of certain examples at the moment, and I’m sorry for that, but I do know that whenever I watch TV or a movie and I spot posters, I always look to see what they are and I almost always get annoyed. “A Minor Threat poster next to a Paula Abdul poster!? You gotta be kidding me!”

I know. It’s a weird thing to get hung up on, but that’s me.


So I mean what I said about Live Free or Die Hard being the best movie I’ve seen all year (and by best I mean most entertaining), but it’s also unfortunately guilty of the aforementioned crime. During a scene in the Mac Guy’s apartment, the television is blasting that terrible Flyleaf song, and NOFX and Linkin Park posters hang on the walls.

Bad, yes. But it got worse.

In a following scene, McGeek and McClane are in the car. The radio is playing, and Creedence’s “Fortunate Son” comes on. Good song, right? Wrong. Linkin Park fanboy starts criticizing McClane’s taste in music. He thinks classic rock is old and pointless. He says about the Creedence song, and I quote, “This is like having a pine cone shoved up my ass!”

If this is like having a pine cone shoved up your ass, what the hell is this shit?

The rest of the movie was fuckin’ awesome, though.

White Striped

posted by on June 28 at 1:58 PM


My friend Dave Vann is the ultimate rock ‘n’ rolling rock ‘n’ roll photographer. Here’s a shot he took on-stage with the White Stripes at Bonnaroo two weeks ago. Good stuff.

Kate Simko @ Oscillate Tonight

posted by on June 28 at 1:19 PM


I gushed on and on about Kate Simko in the column this week and for all of the ink spilled, all I really wanted was a way to imbue the character of Kate Simko’s DEMF set onto the printed page. Her set from the VIP Room a few months back was good, her set from Miami’s WMC similarly so, but the DEMF set goes above and beyond the call of duty, warranting not only an initial complete listen, but plenty of repeat listens as well. Of all the acts that I missed at this year’s DEMF, Kate Simko’s the only one I really regret (but only a little, since her slot was early and my bed was comfortable). Don’t sleep on her appearance tonight at the Baltic Room’s Oscillate (she goes on at 11). If you like the techno (or the techier side of house), it’s where you’ll want to be.

In case you missed the link, here’s Kate’s DEMF set. It’s highly recommended.

Sugar We’re Going Down

posted by on June 28 at 1:10 PM


Just started reading what’s looking to be a very interesting article at about the collapse of the record industry.

“The record business is over,” says music attorney Peter Paterno, who represents Metallica and Dr. Dre. “The labels have wonderful assets—they just can’t make any money off them.” One senior music-industry source who requested anonymity went further: “Here we have a business that’s dying. There won’t be any major labels pretty soon.”

It’s appropriate that the dinosaur of music journalism should examine the dinosaur that is the music industry as both struggle to stay relevant.

Bad Good Move, Space Cadet

posted by on June 28 at 12:45 PM

They formed in 1993, they broke up in 1998, but now, as my friend Eric tells me (there’s your plug, are you happy dude?), the Zoinks are back. They have been since 2005? Srsly? Thanks for telling me, jerks.

I’m so stoked. Fans of fast-paced pop-punk everywhere should be stoked. Earlier this month they played a show in Reno (where they’re from), and I really hope a tour happens soon. Maybe even new material? Although, I don’t really need new material. In fact, I might not like new material. But I’d love to see the entirety of Bad Move, Space Cadet played live.

Come to Seattle, Zoinks. Please.

Also, a bunch of songs are available at their MySpace page, if you’re curious. It’s not revolutionary, it’s just punk rock. And I love it.

It’s Thursday so…

posted by on June 28 at 11:46 AM


Get Wilde!

Call on Superman.

I realise She Can’t Love You! Do you?

Cloetta. As sweet and delicate as spun sugar!

Some Alley Cats keep you up at night.

What time is it? Look to the Sun Dial.

Devo To Play Puyallup Fair!

posted by on June 28 at 11:44 AM

Holy Shit! Gravitron and Devo! Together at last:


Go Away, Julian Casablancas!

posted by on June 28 at 11:17 AM

Last night I had a dream about the Strokes.

I haven’t listened to the Strokes (by choice) for at least three years. I liked the first record for about two weeks. I remember playing it once on a drive to Vancouver. That’s not the point. The point is, the Strokes mean nothing to me. But last night, there they were in my dream, playing on stage while I ran around a weird party in a field looking for something or someone or… something. I don’t remember all the details, I just remember the Strokes. And someone introducing them as the Strokes. And waking up thinking “WTF? The Strokes?”

Then, this morning I walked into a coffeeshop down the street from my house, and playing overhead was the first soing on the Strokes’ first record. And they’re playing it in it’s entirety.

I liked it better when the Beach Boys were stalking me.

I Also Like Rusted Guns of Milan

posted by on June 28 at 11:09 AM

I am not up on things such as album releases.

Therefore, I would like to know—doesn’t Art Brut have a new record out?

Is it any good?

Here are my criteria for good: If it is like “Moving to LA.”

I’M CONSIDERING A MOVE TO LA! (He’s considering a move to LA.) I’M CONSIDERING A MOVE TO LA! (He’s considering a move to LA.)

Considering a move to LA is the best reason for a white guy to scream passionately into a mike in the year 2007.

Moog: Multiple Personality Reorder

posted by on June 28 at 9:35 AM

moogrc4.jpgToday we talk Moog. What’s your current Moog?

Moog synthesizers are loved, trusted, and original. The Moog sound is the Moog sound. When musicians, producers, and listeners want it, they must have it. There is no substitute.

The Moog synth is singular, yet everywhere. Multiple personalities it has. That rounded tone, proven enough for Compton’s sub-woof tweet hydraulics, and just as fitting over the ocean, in a car pumping German techno power grind. Bomb is bomb.

Robert Moog created the first subtractive synthesizer to utilize a keyboard as a controller in 1964. The Moog was not considered a performance instrument at first. It was more a complex studio tool.

The monophonic Minimoog Model D came out in 1971. It was portable, affordable, user friendly, and could stay in tune. Then there was the Taurus bass pedal synthesizer a la Rush’s Geddy Lee. In 2006, the Little Phatty Moog was unveiled.

Dan Rapport, of Red Eye Flight, Blue Scholars Band, and One Family Inc’s Big World Breaks plays a Little Phatty. He is a child of the Moog.

Here he is with seventeen seconds of live Little Phatty Moog from Triple Door’s Musiquarium Lounge:

Rapport says:

The Little Phatty (Stage Edition) is a fully analog, dual oscillator synth with a digital interface to control presets. It’s sort of patterned after the Moog source of the early 80’s. The Moog is best known for its lead sound and its bass sound. A great example of the Moog bass sound is Stevie Wonder’s “Boogie On Reggae Woman.” To hear the Moog’s lead sound, listen to early 90’s Dr. Dre albums and from yesteryear, with George Duke, Herbie Hancock, Jan Hammer albums and such.

Moog synths are built solidly (unlike my Arp Odyssey or my Sequential Circuits Prophet 600). They sound insanely fat. It has something to do with the Moog 4 pole, 24db lowpass, ladder filter. I can’t tell you exactly what that means other than that’s the type of filter Moog uses and used back in the day and the ARP synth company copied it until Moog threatened to sue.

Continue reading "Moog: Multiple Personality Reorder" »

Anxious For the New Minus the Bear?

posted by on June 28 at 9:00 AM


Well Suicide Squeeze has posted a couple songs from the band’s new record Planet of Ice, which won’t be released until August 21st.

Click the song name to listen (duh):

“Throwin Shapes”
“Dr. L’Ling”

Dude. If I smoked pot, that “Dr. L’Ling” business would most definintely make me wanna blaze up. Blaze up? Is that right? Is that what the kids say when they’re doing the marijuana?

Whatever. I’m straight-edge. I know nothing.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

“Beautiful Girls”

posted by on June 27 at 4:27 PM

Sean Kingston’s debut single, “Beautiful Girls,” isn’t yet available as a digital download, but it has been all over YouTube, in large part because of Votigo’s homemade-video contest for the song. Most of these are the usual: cover versions, reused footage from The Lion King, lip-syncing, iffy homemade animation. (A couple weeks ago I caught one of a woman’s solo booty-dance for the camera, but that appears to be gone now.) Still, the best is the one featuring two adorable Asian kids “acting out” the lyric. The song itself corrupts Ben E. King’s “Stand by Me”—pop’s most enduring ode to companionship—with a lyric about suicide; this clip is enough to corrupt the song back into innocence; good thing it ends before Kingston’s line about getting sent up for “doing my first crime.”

Your Name Here

posted by on June 27 at 2:31 PM

Aesop Rock has posted a bulletin on his Myspace page, asking fans to send in pics of their Aesop Rock, Weathermen or Def Jux tattoos for a liner note collage, or something.


Do people - outside of New Jersey - still get tattoos of band names?


“Touring Is Weird.”

posted by on June 27 at 2:24 PM

From Benji Rouse, drummer of the Bow+Arrow:

Touring is weird.

I was expecting Santa Cruz to be one of the better places to play, but unfortunately the other band dropped off and we had to play a non-promoted show with no PA. The only person we knew in town is Lucas’ cousin. We hung out and toured some of the Lost Boys sights, then played to a room on maybe a dozen people (including a random old Seattle friend we ran into who was there doing a cyclocross race).

We didn’t secure a place to stay, but one of the kids working at the cafe told us that if we want to potentially crash in his girlfriend’s front yard we should wait around a few hours and he’d call us about it. We went to Cafe Saturn and got some late night veggie food and waited around, and while we were there one of the waiters walked up to us and slipped Jonny a note, telling us that a girl thought he was cute and wanted to give us her number. Jonny didn’t want to call, and Lucas was too shy to call (though he says he wasn’t), so I called them and they invited us to hang out at their place and play Uno. We went there and they were all super nice. They let us sleep in their living room, and we stayed up watching Mall Rats and played with their adorable hyperactive jumpy flippy kitten.

The next day they and their friends let us take showers at their places, and they took us to the Monterey Aquarium for free (they have a hook up). It was fucking rad - way beyond the aquarium in Seattle in quality and quantity.

We left our new buddies and came to San Luis Obispo and played on KCPR (the local college radio station). The kids doing it are super quiet but nice, and also let us crash at their house. They recently dumpstered 25lbs of pasta and 20 lbs of sauce, so they fed us a very basic and bland meal, and we crashed for the night.
We all woke up a little bit ago. When I came downstairs for my morning pee, I was assaulted by the house dog, who bit me on the ass. We’re about to leave for Santa Barbara, where we’ll be staying with the oh-so-awesome Rebecca of Watercolor Paintings for a few days.

After SB is our rad show in LA (Bow & Arrow, Bow+Arrow, @ Bow & Sparrow*) then we’re playing a house show in San Fransisco that a friend of someone who saw us at the BART station is setting up (apparently there’s quite an internet buzz about us after that), then playing in Napa again on the 2nd, then come home and play with Des_Ark at Camp Nowhere. This is going to be a rad week.

*Bow+Arrow are playing with another band called Bow & Arrow who are thrashier and more spastic at an art gallery called Bow & Sparrow. Get it?

Royal Vulcan Tortoise

posted by on June 27 at 1:35 PM

tortoise_logo.jpgTortoise at Neumos last night. The Chicago sextet was tight and taut as piano wire. (And that’s tight - 1.5 x 109 N/m2 ) Three drummers rotating, guitars, bass, synth, vibraphone , and digital marimba (thank you, E. You are perfect.) Geometric visuals of shapes were projected and completed the wrapping of the Tortoise shell.

Their stage is set with two drum kits facing each other front and center. Monitors, amps, rack fx, and instruments flank.

Moments thundered, post rock. Moments steered through stasis. And moments caught the eye with two drummers facing each other in the middle of the stage doling out locked beat complexities.


(Picture from ICA.)

The room was full and most stayed through the two encores. They played old and new and I especially enjoyed their delving back to the 1998 TNT – “I Set my Face to the Hillside” and “Glass Museum” off the ’96 Millions Now Living Will Never Die.

I thought the show was solid, technically speaking. The room sound was good (bass heavy), and people were very much into it. The guys in Tortoise are all amazing musicians and they’ve been playing and carving their sound for years. Rarely is it ever going to disappoint to see musicians like this and a band like this play and interact.

Somehow though, I was disappointed.

John McEntire, drummer, arranger, producer is preeminent. (Recent Zwickel article.) He’s developed a sound and has the ability to actualize that sound. He’s as pro as pro can get, all the way around. Ok ok, he’s kind of a hero of mine. And I’ve never seen Tortoise or McEntire play. Maybe my expectations were a little high, maybe I have the guy on too much of a pedestal.

I write:

Dear John, Where is the love, man? You didn’t even acknowledge the crowd. You sat there like a royal Vulcan, presiding, emotionless and oblivious to the worshipers at your feet. I don’t think you smiled once during the show, except when you were in holy conference with band members. What gives? I listen to TNT religiously and regularly. I read JZ’s article 19 times. You are my Elvis. But you acted kind of pompous during the show, maybe even with a slight hint of douche bag in there.

Would a wave to the crowd been too much? Maybe a hello or a goodbye or a ‘see you next time’? It’s like you couldn’t have given a shit whether you were there or not. I’m crushed, John, crushed. It’s not like I wanted to hang out or go on a fishing trip with you or anything. I just wanted a little wave to the crowd. I’m sorry, maybe you weren’t feeling well, I shouldn’t rush to judge. I’m sorry. I’m still a fan. You played great. I’ll go buy a poster right now. I’ll be listening to you on TNT for the rest of the day.

I don’t know what you’re doing later, maybe I could call you. Do you want to go on a deep sea fishing trip? Just the two of us?

My Dumb iPod

posted by on June 27 at 1:30 PM

My boyfriend got me an iPod for Christmas. He told me he loaded all of “my music” on it, then laughed—apparently “my music,” which occupies just half of one of the fifteen shelves worth of music in our house, barely made a dent in my new iPod’s memory.

For about three months I wore it everywhere I went—on the bus, on airplanes, at the gym. Then… I stopped. My iPod has been sitting on my nightstand, untouched, for about two months now. Maybe longer. What happened?

I always thought I wasn’t the iPod type. Now I know I’m not. Those first few months, though, made me wonder. I really enjoyed listening to my music walking around town. And I enjoyed plugging my earpuds in and blotting out the world. People leave you alone when you’ve got those things in you ears; they don’t ask you inane questions on the bus, they don’t strike up conversations on airplanes. That was nice.

But… after three months, man, I was sick of everything on my iPod. Sick of Liza and Vicki Carr, sick of Queen and the Beach Boys, sick of Company and Pacific Overtures and Follies. My pathetic half-a-shelf worth of music should have been the dead giveaway: I don’t own enough music, I don’t like enough music, to listen to the music I own and/or like 12 hours a day without quickly sickening of all of it. My boyfriend, on the other hand, has shitloads of music, and consequently never gets tired of listening to his iPod.

So my poor, neglected iPod sits on my nightstand, waiting for the day when I’m ready to hear a little VIcki again. It could be a while.

Library Science

posted by on June 27 at 12:41 PM


I wish there was more of a reggae scene here in Seattle (big ups to Stephen and Zion’s Gate Records), but at least we have a kickass dub band pumping out low, slow, extra-spacial vibes. They’re called Library Science and they’re our Band of the Week.

I fiend for this kind of music, the kind that evokes massive distances and alien landscapes but always thrums along on a sensual, almost subliminal beat. For all its reverb-heavy darkness, there’s something innately playful about the stuff, especially so with Library Science. They’ve got all the requisite dub flourishes—bubbly bass lines, barely-there chinka-chinka guitar, ethereal melodica, kinky electronic dalliance. But Library Science puts their own spin on the classic form in ways that aren’t easy to describe. It’s obvious they’ve got a reverence for the innovators, but there’s a dissonant, electro feel. They thow in unexpected, weird sounds and samples—toy xylophone melodies, wheezing accordion drones, heavily buzzing guitars—that make this stuff totally unique.

They’ve got a couple gigs coming up—August 11 at Central Saloon, August 30 at Rendezvous—and word is they’re terrific live. Glad I discovered them on The Stranger’s Bands Page (coughcough*shameless plug*cough).

This One’s For Jen Graves and Christopher Frizzelle

posted by on June 27 at 11:47 AM

Jen is swamped with work, so sadly she can’t post this herself, but she and I just had a Stevie Nicks appreciation moment (by way of Christopher Frizzelle, who was actually the one who brought the song into our day by singing it through the office after an editorial meeting because he woke up with it stuck in his head) and we wanted to share it with you. Because we know you love her too.

So here:

Personally, I’m more of an “Edge of Seventeen” kinda girl, but this’ll do too.

What I really wanna see, though, is a Graves/Frizzelle duet… Can we make that happen?

In My Head

posted by on June 27 at 11:46 AM

“I have my oh-own life. And I am strong-grr than you know-oh…

New Blitzen Trapper Video

posted by on June 27 at 11:21 AM

I feel confident in saying that everyone here at the office is very into Blitzen Trapper, although I haven’t confirmed with my cohorts.

I also feel confident that this video is very much attuned to how my brain is operating right now (highly caffeinated).

Kay Kay & His Weathered Underground Signs To V2 (Europe)

posted by on June 27 at 10:12 AM


From Kirk Huffman of local sepia pop orchestra Kay Kay & His Weathered Underground:

Kay Kay signed a deal with V2 Europe today. The record won’t be out in the US, apparently no one here wants to sign us. Hahah.

Kay Kay & His Weathered Underground play the Capitol Hill Block Party on Saturday, July 28th at 10:15pm on the Vera stage. They’ll probably have some bootleg domestic CDs/DVDs for sale if you can’t wait for the import…

Dear Weezer, Please Don’t Let it Suck

posted by on June 27 at 10:10 AM



After more than a year’s worth of inactivity while frontman Rivers Cuomo finished an English degree at Harvard, Weezer has announced they will return with a new album in 2008. According to a recent post from Rivers on the band’s website: “We’re just polishing up a batch of songs for a recording session that is going to start at the beginning of July, this will be the final recording session for our sixth album, which we aim to put out in the first half of 2008.”

I’ve already done my obligitory “OMG I L0\/3 Pinkerton post, so I won’t start up with that again (you’re welcome), and I’m also not one of those people who hold bands up to ridiculous expectations put into place by a record that was released over a decade ago, but with that said, I still don’t have high hopes for a new Weezer album, and I can’t help but wince at this news. They’ve been on a steady decline since Pinkerton.

I appreciate the green album for the empty albeit catchy diddies, but Maladroit was B-O-R-I-N-G boring. And Make Believe, well, Make Believe has one good song on it. One. I can’t even remember the name of it, though, because it wasn’t even that great of a good song. Maybe it’s that “Perfect Situation” song that’s on their MySpace page, which has the almost exact same guitar intro as “Simple Pages” from the green album, supporting the fact that the band has become a complete parody of itself. I mean, does anyone really care about (new) Weezer anymore? Should anyone?

The Pierced Arrows Announce First Seattle Show

posted by on June 27 at 9:29 AM

In case you weren’t paying attention (like I wasn’t, until I got my sweet weekly update from Hot Tipper and Funhouse booker Brian Foss), Fred & Toody Cole have formed a new band! Thank God, because I was so pissed that as soon as I turned 21, Dead Moon broke up, and I never got to see them.

This makes me think that the super crazy sudden split of Dead Moon was because of the drummer, Andrew Loomis, which I guess is good. I wouldn’t want a band AND a marriage breaking up.

Anyhow, you can catch Pierced Arrows at the Funhouse on August 17th. It’ll be their first Seattle show.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Napa Valley Bum-Out

posted by on June 26 at 6:36 PM


I’m back in town and after two loads of laundry, a sixteen minute shower, and several plates of life-affirming Thai food, I’m starting to feel human again. The Bow+Arrow boys are still on the road for another couple of weeks, on their way down to Southern California and beyond.

Northern California has been a really mixed bag of really rad folks and some of the more fucked up people we’ve seen. The house shows have ranged from really shitty like in Sacramento, CA where our hosts spent a fair amount of the afternoon hanging out with us only to skip out on our actual musical sets to drop acid in their back yard. It was one of those shows where the only people watching were the kids in the other bands.

Napa.jpgNapa @ the G Spot

Napa, CA was just plain fucked up. We met some really rad people like Kyle from Grand Color Crayon and Tom whose band Planets is amazing; the two piece’s heady musicianship reminds me of the frenetic density of post-prog bands like Battles or Lightning Bolt.

Aside from the cool bands, Napa was also where we saw knives pulled at house parties, ladies getting punched and choked in back yards, naked guys showing off their deformed testicles and lots of obnoxious surly drunks puking and picking fights with whomever they could get their hands on. Despite the generosity, talent, and warmth of our hosts in Napa— we came away with disturbed impressions of a bunch of kids who have nothing to look forward to besides another fucked up night in suburban hell.

BART.jpg24th & Mission St. BART Station

San Francisco was a whirlwind of catching up with Seattle expatriates and trying to experience as much in the city as possible. Since our show at the Egg got canceled, Bow+Arrow plugged in and played a couple songs outside the 24th & Mission BART station before a police officer informed us that it’s a felony to steal power from the city and shut them down.

The Bow+Arrow guys are planning on writing me with updates about their tour, so I’ll post to Lineout as pertinent. And for no reason other than that it’s awesome, here’s a picture of us with the super methed-out heavy metal busker we ran into on 16th & Valencia at 3am.

What the Hell is Beyonce Talking About?

posted by on June 26 at 4:46 PM


So I was at the gym and Beyonce’s song “Suga Mama” came on my iPod.

The song is all about how Beyonce loves spending money on her good-fuckin’ lover, and opens with a sexually satisfied B. murmuring, “Damn, that was so good I want to buy him a short set.”

Here’s my question: What the hell is Beyonce talking about when she says “short set”? Golf clubs? Ribs? Matching shorts-n-top?

Thank you for your help. (And belated thanks to Larry Mizell Jr., who was kind enough to tell me what the hell Ice Cube was talking about when he said “nappy dugout.”)

What is the Sound of One Ego Tripping?

posted by on June 26 at 12:47 PM


I’ve been listening to my advance copy. It’s been hard.

Look for a full review by the Great Pumpkin himself in next week’s issue.

Crusty Old Dean The RIAA To Bust The UW’s MP3 Downloading Kegger

posted by on June 26 at 12:46 PM




The Recording Industry Association of America’s brilliant plan to save the record industry (detailed here, here, and here by the good folks at Idolator)—by suing individual college students for sharing the new Rihanna single—is about to hit the UW according to this email forwarded to the Stranger by hot tipper Marianne (emphasis added):

This message is being sent to all students with approval from the Office of the Vice Provost for Student Life. _____

Dear Student:

I am writing to inform you of a development that could become a serious issue for some of our students—the law governing downloading and sharing of music and video from the internet. Under copyright law, it is illegal to download or share copyrighted materials such as music or movies without the permission of the copyright owner. The Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) in recent years has taken an aggressive approach to stopping this illegal downloading and file sharing. This has put many students at the nation’s colleges and universities at some legal risk. I write first to caution you against illegally downloading or sharing files. Your actions when you do so are traceable and could result in a significant financial penalty to you. Second, I want to inform you about a new process the RIAA has initiated and the University’s role in this process.

The RIAA is now sending colleges and universities a letter for each instance they find of a student illegally downloading material from the internet and requesting the university to identify the individual student and forward the letter to him or her. The letter, called an “Early Settlement Letter” notifies the student that he or she has 20 days to settle with the RIAA by going to a designated website, entering identifying information, and paying a set amount, usually between $3,000 and $5,000, but sometimes considerably more. If the recipient chooses not to settle, the RIAA will file a lawsuit and the offer to settle for the amount stipulated is no longer an option.

The University has been notified by the RIAA that we will be receiving a number of these early settlement letters. After careful consideration, we have decided to forward the letters to the alleged copyright violators. We do so primarily because we believe students should have the opportunity to avail themselves of the settlement option if they so choose. Not forwarding the RIAA letter to students could result in their being served with a lawsuit, with no chance to settle it beforehand.

The University is unable to provide legal services to students who have violated copyright law through illegal downloading or sharing. If you receive a letter from the RIAA, we encourage you to engage a personal attorney. If you have questions, please let us know.

We know how tempting it is to download music or movies and share files with your friends. But you need to know that it is illegal to do so and that the consequences can be severe. Please inform yourself of the requirements of the law and please obey it. Otherwise, it may prove costly for you and your family.

Sincerely yours,

Eric S. Godfrey
Vice Provost for Student Life


So We’re About Halfway Through, and These Are the Best So Far

posted by on June 26 at 12:40 PM

These two records are right now battling for 2007 dominance in my mind:
Dan Deacon’s Spiderman of the Rings (This is the video for “Crystal Cat”)

and Battles’ Mirrored (This is the video for “Atlas”)

These two albums both make me shit my pants, honestly, but JZ, Eric and Megan disagree.

Eric is enamored with LCD Soundsystem’s Sound of Silver and Of Montreal’s Hissing Fauna, Are You the Destroyer?
Here’s “All My Friends” from Sound of Silver.

JZ agrees with me on the Battles, but he luuuuurrrvvveesss the Avett Brother’s Emotionalism.
Here’s the Avetts on Conan O’Brien:

Megan prefers to stay local, shouting out the Whore Moans’ Watch Out for This Thing. She also adores Ted Leo always, so his new one, Living with the Living, makes her list. But she’s also really indecisive and says she loves the new Modest Mouse and the new Arcade Fire, as well.
Here’s the video for “Bomb. Repeat. Bomb” from Ted Leo.

Anyhow, I think mine are the best, but I’m sure you disagree.

Seattle’s New Night-Life

posted by on June 26 at 11:57 AM

Hey Seattle! You have another new band!


Night-Life is the new project fronted by Adam MacKinnon (of Ambitious Career Women fame) along with a number of past and/or present Hideous Thieves (including Gavin Tull-Esterbrook, Kevin Barrans, and Joel Cuplin).

They’ve got this whole cabaret/old time dive bar sound going by way of clunky piano, accordion, and “drunken trombone,” and the songs are melodic, but also a little messy (but it’s the good kind of messy, the on purpose kind of messy).

You can hear a couple tracks at the band’s MySpace page, and the self-titled eight song CD is available at all three Sonic Boom locations. They also have a few shows coming up this summer, the soonest being July 19 at the Crocodile.

Scientific American - “Mass Dstrction v.4”

posted by on June 26 at 11:46 AM


Scientific American is the production alias of Seattle’s Andrew Rohrmann. Indie rockers might know him as that dude who remixed Modest Mouse/764-HERO’s heartbreaking Valentine’s Day opus “Whenever You See Fit.” But Scientific American also stays busy scoring television commercials and making his copyright defying “Mass Dstrction” mixes.

Scientific American is like Seattle’s brainy answer to Girl Talk. And while Gregg Gillis may get all the critical love for his post-mash up mayhem, the “Mass Dstrction” mixes are just as packed with pilfered audio, just as artfully cut up, and maybe just a little less populist/maximalist.

This latest entry in the series goes like this:

the books
wu-tang clan
machine drum
buju banton
jimmy edgar
mary j blige
rob steady
thom yorke
ying yang twins
elliott smith
keak da sneak
dj shadow
method man
ll cool j
riow arai + nongenetic
kris moon
gwen stefani
lil mama
dizzee rascal
busta rhymes/janet jackson
hot chip
notorious b.i.g.
para one
dj c

Download: Scientific American - “Mass Dstrction v.4”

Getting Squiggly/Can’t Touch This

posted by on June 26 at 11:12 AM



is this:


on this:


Story from the AP:

In the Netherlands, a panicking driver under the influence of cocaine led several police cars and a helicopter on a chase through a wheat field before being caught.

Apparently, the man was cranking MC Hammer on his stereo.

“Have a Drink, Have a Drive”

posted by on June 26 at 11:01 AM

It’s about time to listen to Mungo Jerry’s “In the Summertime.”

Had no idea dude was a Sly Stone lookalike, but there he is.

Classic, un-PC lines include “If her daddy’s rich, take her out for a meal/If her daddy’s poor, just do what you feel” and “have a drink, have a drive, go out and see what you can find.”

Whoohoo summertime! Whoohoo drunk driving!

Rockets - On The Road Again

posted by on June 26 at 10:55 AM


Last Week one of my favorite blogs, Best Foot Forward, offered Space Rock by Rockets for everyone to download. But they didn’t offer much more info about the group, so here’s a brief history.

In 1972 producer Claude Lemoine produced a single called Future Woman for a band called Crystal. With the single’s poularity the band decided to change it’s name and look, so in 1974 they became The Rocket Men (or Rocketters in France). They shaved their heads, wore matching “space age” outfits and painted themselves with silver make-up. They didn’t quite have the formula right though, unitl 1976 when they changed their name to Rockets. They did a dancier, spacier remake of thier hit Future Woman which brought them, once again, popularity throughout Europe. It didn’t hurt that their live shows were full of lasers, smoke, exploding cannons of fire and a tripped out light show.


In 1976 they released their self titled album which brought them to the attention of America’s premier disco label, Salsoul. Salsoul signed them onto their offshoot label Tom ‘n’ Jerry Records for Rockets only american album, On The Road Again.

The first side of this album is amazing! The Canned Heat cover, On The Road Again, lays down the blues/funk in a propulsive chugging mix by Tom Moulton. Vocoder lyrics and talk box guitar riffs accentuate the feel of aliens out on a road trip. Surreal and special. Then there’s the instrumental break down in the b-side hit Space Rock. Also mixed by Tom Moulton, this tripped out guitar inflected synth song never fails to get an ass or two shaking. Imagine Gino Soccio mixed with ZZ Top. Interstellar Rock!

The band consisted of Zeus B. Held on Vocoder, Christian Le Bartz on Vocals, “Little” G. L’Her on Bass, Alain Maratrat on Guitars and Synths, Fabrice Quagliotti on Syths and Alain Groetzinger on Drums.

Zeus B. Held would eventually go on to record a couple of sick solo albums then become Europe’s uber-producer of the ‘80’s, producing the likes of Gina X and Nina Hagen.

Producer Claude Lemoine would go on to produce on of the early ‘90’s biggest throw-away dance hits, Jordy’s Durr Durr D’etre Baby! with Rockets band member Maratrat.

Fabrice Quagliotti would join New Wave band Sal Solo in the ‘80’s.

The second side of On The Road Again, is a kinda space-y new age-ish effort, which doesn’t have as much spark or soul as the first side, so I’ll just ignore it.

But you should definately grab this little piece of French Disco/Rock history by the samples at my blog, here!

Monday, June 25, 2007

The Drrrty South

posted by on June 25 at 6:42 PM

So, there’s this thing called the Urban Art Festival that you haven’t heard of and didn’t go to. Which is fine, you didn’t miss much and probably wouldn’t have made the drive to Tacoma anyway. It was sort of Urban, sort of Art, barely Festival. There was one (one!) food vendor selling exclusively barbecued pork sandwiches.

Tacoma has a chronic problem with supporting its arts community, specifically music. People just don’t come out for shows; I could probably come up with a failed Tacoma venue for every letter of the alphabet. Even despite the terrible execution, though, the Urban Art Festival is a nice idea. The kids had a good time, even rocked out a little, and the city bonded under umbrellas and tarps. You can say all you want about how sketchy and gritty and tacky Tacoma is and I’ll probably agree with you, but the city’s got good intentions and a tender little heart.

Continue reading "The Drrrty South" »

Moment of Clarity

posted by on June 25 at 5:27 PM


Local purveyors of unabashed hair-metal Sunday Night Blackout have completed work on their debut album, produced by Seattle rock mainstay Kurt Bloch.

After procuring Bloch, SNB holed up at the Institution, more specifically in Post Stardom Depression’s practice space/studio, which was generously offered by PSD frontman Jeff Angell. SNB spent nearly a week recording and overdubbing in the space, then Bloch took the project to Seattle’s Chroma Sound for mixdown. Bloch is also handling mastering duties for the record, and SNB are currently entertaining label offers, says guitarist and founding member John Wokas. If things go to plan, Wokas says, the record will be released as soon as August. Although opinion varies widely among members, the band are working with the tentative title Public Boner.

Whatever the name, fans of SNB’s frenetic live show should be happy to hear that the local act will soon offer a product ripe for blowing out the sound system in the ol’ Camaro. Tracks slated for inclusion feature heavy metal-meets-Blue Oyster Cult dual-guitar attack from Wokas and lead-guitarist Omar Schambacher, reserved, un-augmented bass compliment from ex-Catheters guitarist Derek Mason, and appropriately throaty bellowing from apparent Bruce Dickenson protégé Neil Devlin, formerly of Spitting Teeth.

“The Past is a Grotesque Animal”

posted by on June 25 at 3:37 PM

So, this should have gone up Friday, I guess, but I was busy recapping Thursday night’s Glass Candy show at the Comet, among other things. So, with no further ado, the Best Song Ever (Last Week) is…

“The Past is a Grotesque Animal” by Of Montreal

The song is nearly 12 minutes long, but it flies by—it tricks the time-keeping part of the mind, which is only the first or last reason it’s a great song. “The Past is a Grotesque Animal” is the hypnotic centerpiece of the great Hissing Fauna Are You the Destroyer>, a drawn-out, eventually frantic unravelling of the album’s autobiographical character(s) (“let’s have some fun/let’s tear the shit apart/let’s tear the fucking house apart/let’s tear our fucking bodies apart”). But beyond it’s episodic significance, it’s an examination of futility, despair, and nostalgia in the face of mortality (“I find myself searching for old selves/while speeding forward through the plate glass of maturing cells”). The past is a monster, a bitter reminder of things that could’ve been (“things could be different, but they’re not”) as well as things that were, both equally taunting and impossible, and as time progresses, it only gets larger and more grotesque (“and in its eyes you see/how completely wrong you can be”).

If it’s lyrically morbid, it’s at least a little musically buoyant. The track builds over metronomic kick drum, flanged bass, and propulsive 16th note guitar picking; keyboard filter sweeps, ambient noises, and muffled growls circle around and descend. At 4:19, background “Oooh oooh ooh”s float up out of nowhere and then repeat for the rest of the track. Over all this, Kevin Barnes sings and whines and then barks. He references Georges Bataille. He sings about failed romance as existential crisis. When the track finally exhausts itself and sputters out at 11:45, it’s a profound moment of catharsis.

“She has everything to gain cuz she’s a fat girl with a lisp…”

posted by on June 25 at 1:41 PM

As if there weren’t already enough reasons to love Cafe Presse—it’s open 19 hours a day (7 am to 2 am), it’s halfway between Neumo’s and Chop Suey (12th and Madison), you can always get a seat (check out the back room), they sell magazines and newspapers in addition to delicious food (it’s the Le Pichet people), and said delicious food is so cheap “you can’t afford not to eat here” (immortal words of Bethany Jean Clement)—I was just there, enjoying a chocolate croissant and a mushroom omelette and doing some work, when THE FIRST SONG ON THE FIRST ALBUM BY BELLE AND SEBASTIAN CAME ON. And then the second song. And the third.

Be still my beating heart! Cafe Presse just played Tigermilk ALL THE WAY THROUGH.

I will be eating at Cafe Presse the rest of my life.

(Confidential to Megan: Yes, they have mayonnaise. They even mention mayonnaise on the menu. Oeuf Mayonnaise is “two hard-cooked eggs with mayonnaise and cornichons.” Confidential to anyone who doesn’t get my confidential note to Megan: Google “Belle and Sebastian fact of the day” and “mayonnaise fact of the day” and all will be explained.)

Feist and Grizzly Bear @ The Moore

posted by on June 25 at 12:49 PM


It took me several listens to really appreciate Grizzly Bear’s latest release, Yellow House. Eventually, it was all about the context of how I was listening to the album. It’s slow, moody and atmospheric, and when I eventually listened to it without distractions I could finally hear what they were getting at. The Moore was a perfect venue for them to showcase their talent, as the seating and lack of bar in the room allowed for total quiet, something Grizzly Bear used to their advantage. I saw them at Sasquatch! last month and was very impressed, but the intricacies of their music can only fully be realized in a silent room. Their sound is soaked in reverb and there’s never a sharp edge – everything is smooth and gentle. Even when they build to rocking climaxes they manage to completely avoid the abrasive.

Most impressive though were their vocal harmonies, which were at the forefront of every song they played. As far as I could tell none of them hit an off note the entire show, which is pretty impressive considering how many times they harmonized with each other. This band is incredibly good at what they do, and they were thankful to the crowd for listening so diligently and respectfully.


Feist was equally brilliant, with a four-piece band filling out her songs the way they were recorded on her albums. I didn’t realize how good she is at guitar before I saw her perform, but Feist can rock an electric as easily as she can soothingly strum an acoustic. Her set alternated evenly between upbeat songs like “1,2,3,4” and “I Feel It All,” and slower ballads like “The Park.” Her backing band was solid, and added nice touches, like using a trumpet to mimic the sound of the ocean after a line about the sea in “The Water.” Before the obligatory encore break they played “Mushaboom,” the song that initially got me interested in Feist, which the band sped up faster than on the album and added a nice trumpet solo on the end.

For the encore they had a jam out session on “Sea Lion Woman,” with Feist making her own vocal harmonies through a loop pedal. They closed with “Let It Die,” lights dimmed and the mirror ball sparkling everyone in the crowd. It felt like the last slow dance at Prom, although if Feist would have played my Prom I would have had a much better time.

There is something timeless about Feist’s music, something that is easily relatable across generations. I saw several forty and fifty-somethings in the crowd, all eagerly awaiting Feist like those of us in our twenties, and it never seemed odd that they would enjoy these songs for the same reasons we do. In fact, I found myself thinking during both Feist and Grizzly Bear, “My mom would probably really like this.” I like to think that’s not due to me liking antiquated music, but to these artists writing undeniably good songs.

Since We’re On the Subject

posted by on June 25 at 12:10 PM

Megan, I’ll see your James cover and raise you another.

This Song Sounds Really Good Today

posted by on June 25 at 11:11 AM

That is all.

Modeselektor’s Happy Birthday!

posted by on June 25 at 10:23 AM


Bpitch Control’s not-so-secret weapon Modeselektor are releasing their sophomore full-length, Happy Birthday!, via the Berlin label this September 11th. The duo of Gernot Bronsert and Sebastian Szary—soon to be dads, both, hence the album’s title—produced the album in a studio built in an Airstream Trailer. Thom Yorke, TTC, Otto Von Schriach, and Maximo Park all make guest appearances on the album, which promises to jump from “hard rap à la French to Dubstep to Eurocrunk to Continental Grime to Tech-Rap and more.”

01. Godspeed
02. 2000007 (feat.TTC)
03. Happy Birthday
04. Let Your Love Grow (feat. Paul St. Hillaire)
05. B.M.I.
06. EM ocean
07. Sucker Pin
08. The First Rebirth
09. The Dark Side of the Frog
10. The Dark Side of the Sun (feat. Puppetmastaz)
11. Black Block
12. Edgar
13. hyper hyper (feat. Otto von Schirach)
14. Late Check-Out
15. The Wedding Toccata Theme
16. The White Flash (feat. Thom Yorke)
17. Déboutonner (feat. Siriusmo)
+ Bonus track: “I Can´t Sleep (Without Music)” (feat. Maximo Park)
(on original CD release only)

Hopefully this means someone will be bringing the pair back to Seattle for a repeat of their off-the-walls performance last spring at Re-Bar.

Wanna Go See the Divorce? For Free?

posted by on June 25 at 10:21 AM


Hey you! The Divorce are playing their last shows this week, Saturday the 30th, at the Crocodile. Did you know that? Well it’s true.

Do you wanna see the show for absolutely nothing? Of course you do! Ari Spool and I worked our magic and got a pair of tickets to both the all-ages and the 21+ shows this weekend, and we wanna give them to one lucky Setlist listener.

That could very well be you.

So if you wanna go, all you have to do is listen to Setlist (click here, dummy, I mean nice person), and find out how to enter. It’s really easy. It involves sending an e-mail. And that’s it. Easy peasy. But the deadline is the end of the day today, so you better get goin’.

Good luck!

Relax, NME, Don’t Do It

posted by on June 25 at 9:34 AM

Sounds like British music rag NME had an exhausting time at the festivals this weekend (headlines from

Jarvis Cocker Brings Meltdown to a Climax.

The Gossip Provide Glastonbury with Fitting Climax.

Chemical Brothers Bring Glastonbury to Thunderous Finish. (Reads as “Thunderous Climax” on Google Reader)

Man, I’m spent just reading all that…

Sunday, June 24, 2007

Do or Donut—There Is No Try

posted by on June 24 at 4:13 PM


The maximun number of donuts a normal human being can consume is seven. This scientific fact was proven during yesterday’s doughnut eating contest, hosted by the Saturday Knights and MCed by our very own Kelly O.

I thought it would be more, but Top Pot donuts aren’t the light-n-fluffy confection clouds that Krispy Kreme are. It was only after trying one of the leftovers that I learned that Top Pot’s specialty is the cakey kind of donut, glazed and hyper-sugary, a deceptively small gut bomb. So seven is actually a lot.

TSK blasted through four songs on Silver Platters’ stage while the four eaters stuffed their faces at a table below. It was a short set and sort of a dubious contest—all four competitors walked away with $25 gift certificates to the store, not to mention bellies full of donuts. Heavy, cakey donuts. Seven apiece. Urgh.

But hey, when the Saturday Knights play a free set, everyone wins.

*Update: Apparently our food columnist Angela Garbes cooked dinner for several friends on Saturday night after the contest, including one of the donut eaters. Wonder what was on the menu.




Good News For Beat Junkies, Slaves To The Rhythm and People Who Could Stop Listening To Bluegrass Any Time They Want

posted by on June 24 at 11:36 AM

Last week, a Swedish heavy metal fan successfully had his compulsion to rock out classified as a disability and is now receiving welfare benefits from the state.

Just To Prove I’m Not Exaggerating

posted by on June 24 at 10:00 AM

I really mean it when I say in next week’s Polyphonic Spree review that the band is starting to look like a cross between a gothic Danielson Family and My Chemical Romance…


Exhibit A + Exhibit B = Megan is totally right.


You can’t argue with math.

(The full review—that talks about more than the band’s fashion sense—will be in the paper that hits the streets Wednesday. I just couldn’t wait until then to put this up.)