Information buffs are already privy to the goofy quizzes that the brainy magazine, mental_flossdoes every month in their magazine (they take the history of life's ordinary things and make them interesting). But I had no idea just how many existed on their website until this evening, when I came across the one I knew would be a miserable personal failure: Lifetime Movie or Megadeth Song? Surprisingly, considering my knowledge of both Lifetime movies and Megadeth songs to be sub-par at best, I still made out with 6 out of 10 correct. You'll be shocked at some of the correct answers. We're dealing with movies dealing with ex-nuns turned rape counselors, and songs about heroes and shit.
Just sayin'...maybe it's a generational thing...or the kick ass dual guitar. Hmmm, I dunno. JUST KIDDING, I do the Treepeople were a perfect POST Hardcore group, threading melodies and fills via the Wipers and the Damned while keeping their forward stampede aloft. PERHAPS? I also enjoy how they could gleefully lance the pretense of snooty indie pricks.
Let me tell you who my favorite band is Let me tell you so you know who I am Cause I know all about sex and death...
Ah yes...ZING!!! Hmmmm, AMAZING that cheek still rings true today. Gosh you'd think the kids would'a learned...um...uh...oh forget it... Okay, have some more forward stampede AND dual guitar.
I was living in NC and only was able to see them once, in Durham, of all places. I think it was 1992. RIP Pat Brown. RIP Chris Takino. I miss you boys.
On Friday, we saw that (unlike Martin Van Buren) William Henry Harrison had a great campaign song. Today, we look at his second great campaign song, "Tippecanoe and Tyler Too." Here's a They Might Be Giants cover of that song:
According to campaign song expert Irwin Silber (via Wikipedia, of course), this is the song that really cemented the idea of the American campaign song. And you're not going to find any contrarian balloon-bursting from me: It's a great song. It portrays Harrison and Tyler as the tools of a great change sweeping the nation, it belittles their opponents at every opportunity, and it features a lot of wordplay and other high-quality lyrical tricks. Good show, Harrison!
Lyrics: 10 Enthusiasm: 10 Infectiousness: 10 Total Score: 10
Leader Dylan Carson has said that the new full-length is influenced by British psych-folk bands Pentangle and Fairport Convention and African desert-blues ensembble Tinariwen. So far, I'm not really hearing those elements in Angels of Darkness—if they're present, they're very subtly woven into Earth's typically dense, stoic fabric. Actually, it sounds much like the previous two Earth albums, The Bees Made Honey in the Lion's Skull and Hex; Or, Printing in the Infernal Method. The songs slowly arc over great expanses of pewter-hued skies, mournfully sighing and groaning with a heavy portent of doom. Lori Goldston's cello increases Earth's beautiful brood quotient, especially on the 20-minute title track that concludes the album. But with Earth, first listens can be deceptive; their thick, molasses-y sound takes a while to seep its way into your pleasure centers. When it does, it's there to last and it goes deep.
So I was looking at the list of new liquor license applications on the WA-LCB website (yeah, I'm geek like that) and I saw this one:
Notification Date: 1/3/2011 Business Name: SHELTER LOUNGE Business Location: 722 E PIKE ST, SEATTLE, WA98122-3720 Applicant(s): TAKE SHELTER INC.; CARLISLE, RYAN; CARLSON, KEVIN MATHEW; TRAN, HUNG HOANG Liquor License Type: NIGHTCLUB Application Type: NEW APPLICATION License Number: 354923
A trip by the Hunter Gatherer Lodge (an old War Room space) confirms. The bar manager declined to comment on the application.
UPDATE: Owner Marcus Lalario says that an offer has been made, but that it hasn't been accepted by the landlord as of yet. "Nothing is set yet," he said. "Everything is still up in the air. They just jumped the gun a little bit on applying for the license."
In other news from that block, a pho joint has taken the place of Maharaja. That was fast:
Last week, Levi Fuller launched Ball of Wax's blog as a news hub for all sorts of information about Ball-of-Wax-related activities. Today, he's announcing a project named Songs about Books that I'm taking part in, and I hope you'll find it worth your time and interest:
Put quite simply, the idea of Songs about Books is to get five different songwriters (myself included) to write sets of songs about five different books (one book each)...After a painstaking process of deliberation, I picked Ryan Barrett (The Pica Beats), Alex Guy (Led to Sea), Johanna Kunin (Bright Archer), and Joshua Morrison to be my fellow songwriters on this project. I’ve been lucky enough to have music by each of them on Ball of Wax over the years, and I think the five of us together will make for a lively, diverse offering.
Levi asked me to pick the books. Over the last few weeks, I've been interviewing each of these musicians and listening to their music, trying to find the right books to assign. I didn't want to just recommend books the musicians would like; I wanted to find authors who would be worthy collaborators with the musicians. I tried to find pairings whose themes and narratives would work well together. Starting tomorrow, I'm going to be announcing the books I chose over at Levi's blog. Here's what the musicians will do with their books:
Now that we’ve gotten our assignments, we will take our books and read them, of course. Following that, each of us will write five songs inspired by our book, and choose three of those to record. The resulting 15 recorded songs will comprise Ball of Wax Audio Quarterly Volume 25 (Summer 2011), which will be released with a performance on August 19th at the Fremont Abbey. At the show you’ll get to hear all 25 songs that resulted from this project, and take home the 15-song CD to listen to and cherish forever.
I can't wait to see what the songwriters come up with.
by Dave Segal
on Mon, Jan 31, 2011 at 2:01 PM
UK hauntological duo Demdike Stare—Manchester-based producers/crate-diggers Sean Canty of Finders Keepers Records and Miles Whittaker—have a new mix available for the downloading at the site of their label, Modern Love. I don't recognize any of the tracks, but I'm digging the prevalent forlorn-countryside/abandoned-warehouse/subtle horror-flick-ish vibe. (A critic on Dusted today called their music "seancedelia," and that term fairly accurately describes the selections here.)
Demdike Stare's Tryptych triple CD comes out Feb. 1. I hope to say some worthwhile things about it in the near future.
Dylan's Candy Bar in New York is selling a limited-edition Prince chocolate bar for $5. I did not buy this candy bar, I was actually quite turned off by the idea of eating anything "Prince" flavored. Also: It was $5. For a plain ol' Belgium milk chocolate bar (which is hilarious because Prince is vegan).
What a missed opportunity. There are so many ways they could've flavored this thing! They could've made it vegan, for one, so Prince could actually eat his own fucking candy bar. Now I have a very important question for all Prince fans:
What should a Prince-flavored candy bar taste like?
Over the weekend, on the venerable DJ Premier's show on SiriusXM, Primo announced that the aknowledged father of hiphop culture itself, Clive "Kool Herc" Campbell, was 'very sick', without health insurance, and needing surgery. His family is asking for donations to help; I would tend to agree with the opinion of some of the commenters on this NY Daily News piece-that cats like Russell Simmons, Sean Combs and Sean Carter—dudes who've made untold millions off the culture that Herc originated should find it in their heart to help. They won't—but they should. If you want to pat your pockets for Kool Herc, you can Paypal his sister at email@example.com, or send them to:
Kool Herc Productions PO Box 20472 Huntington Station, NY 11746
Thus far, all of the costs of the film have come from our own pockets. The funding from KickStarter will be used solely for post-production costs - editing, color correction, audio engineering, DVD printing, and film festival submissions.
Can we raise more than our goal?
YES! And YES! $15,000 is just A PART of our budget and Kickstarter allows you to raise as much money as is given before the deadline. This means more ability for us, the filmmakers, to travel, collect more interviews, and allows us more assistance in getting the equipment needed to film a feature length documentary.
HOWSE. Mighty mighty, just letting it all hang out.
She's the one, the only one, who's built like an amazon.
In a bit of surprising news, Fleet Foxes have decided to change direction. To support their upcoming release Helplessness Blues, the band will only be performing Commodores covers with toy instruments at wedding receptions while wearing fox suits. (Actually, they won't be doing this at all. But maybe just once they could do it, or something. I'm looking forward to the release.)
by Brian Cook
on Mon, Jan 31, 2011 at 12:17 PM
I’m still feeling giddy from the forgetters show at Vera last night. For all the love that gets thrown around for Jawbreaker, I never really thought their live show was that remarkable. You had to know the material and love the records, and then it was just a big communal heartache fest when they’d take the stage at the Capitol Theater Backstage or the Old Fire House. Similarly, I remember being initially disappointed by Jets To Brazil’s Northwest debut at the RKCNDY, though I went on to love all their records. So to be impressed by Blake Schwarzenbach’s latest band right at the get-go makes me think great things are in store for forgetters. This song in particular left me a little misty-eyed…
Older scene veterans forming new bands—there’s a lot of it going on lately. And the beauty of it is that there seems to be a renewed sense of purpose and ideology with a lot of these new projects. I doubt forgetters will make the kind of business moves Jawbreaker made towards the end of their career. If the new markets created by the internet made the previous millennium’s basement heroes think there was a viable career in making music, the crumbling music industry and the bitter realities of making one’s art a career seems to have recalibrated the expectations and incentives for the modern rock band. Bands are moving back to an age of self-releasing records, passing on extensive touring in favor of weekend jaunts, and opting for shows at alternative spaces instead of the big rock clubs. Let’s just forget the last decade ever happened.
Trevor de Brauw, guitarist for Chicago instrumentalists Pelican would most likely agree. Pelican fans have probably already noted the band’s decrease in activity, a deliberate move after ten years of constant touring. Bee Control—Trevor’s short-lived side project with Dave Laney (Milemarker, Challenger, Auxes) and Theo Katsaounis (Joan of Arc)—was an antidote of sorts, a return to the raging no-hope hardcore of their youth. “Near the end of [Pelican’s] stint as a full time band, we'd be on these one week stints with bands whose enthusiasm for being on the road was overwhelming because it was something they were approaching as a hobby. I was really jealous, because I was valuing the experience of playing on a different, more jaded level,” says de Brauw. Bee Control is currently on hiatus due to Laney living abroad. One can only assume that the 300 copies of their 7” will disappear quickly.
Jawbreaker’s major label stint was a death knell for the band, and their mandible brethren Jawbox didn’t fare much better. Not surprisingly, the new projects that arose from the ashes of Jawbox opted to work with their own label, DeSoto Records. Guitarist/vocalist J. Robbins’ latest endeavor is even more DIY in nature; Office of Future Plans’ debut 7” was funded entirely by Kickstarter donations. The band is classic Robbins—big, angular guitar work blanketed by strong vocal melodies and hammered into place with an authoritative rhythm section. Check it out here.
On a local level, Nate Turpen of Seattle indie-training-ground post-rock band Sharks Keep Moving and Joe Anderson of grossly underappreciated Bellingham art-core band Jough Dawn Baker recently formed Man Years. There’s a little bit of the wiry guitar jangle and bouts of meaty riffage that can be traced back to their earlier projects, but Man Years put a heavy emphasis on breathy, layered falsetto vocals, a sly and alluring counterpoint to their brainy instrumentation. They have a full length in the works and should be playing out soon. Keep an eye out for them, or take a Dramamine and check ‘em out on Myspace.
I’m probably still riding a forgetters high, but the future is looking good.
NYC duo Blissed Out's 3MPIR3 §†Å†3 LP is finally coming out tomorrow, February 1st, and those dudes just sent over a new video for lead-off single "Myrtle Wycoff" directed by Sterling Crispin, the helmer of clips for Locrian and nü-rave starchild Pictureplane (he made that awesomely bleary "Goth Star" video). It was filmed at the notorious Brooklyn DIY space Market Hotel, though the "trippy shit" to "live footage" ratio heavily favors the former. I guess I'll have to delete my boring youtube clip now.
by Dave Segal
on Mon, Jan 31, 2011 at 11:19 AM
John Barry, who was among the greatest film composers ever, died Jan. 30 of a heart attack at age 77. Saint Etienne member and super fan Bob Stanley has an insightful remembrance of the British soundtracker in the Guardian.
As I've said and written many times before, John Barry wrote the most poignant piece of music of all time, "Midnight Cowboy Theme." Nothing can sway me from this position, though I'm always hopeful somebody will top it someday. Few could pluck your heartstrings with as much tenderness and beauty as Mr. Barry. That he could also epitomize in music the Swinging '60s London as well as pen bold, brassy themes for 12 James Bond films and coiled, suspenseful scores for other movies and TV programs shows his vast range.
The stoners over at NASA have cooked up a cool new clip of Martian topographic photos taken by their HiRISE satellite set to some Raga-flavored lounge music (I guess they couldn't afford to license Bowie or Lou Reed). But hey, props for trying, guys. This is only the second best "music video" I've seen all day (more on that later).
STOP USING MYSPACE. Can we please just let it die now? It was sorta still acceptable before the big redesign, but now it's utterly USELESS.
It's ugly. It's slow. It makes my computer crash 30% of the time and it takes three times longer to get the info and/or songs than other websites. For music, try Bandcamp.com. It's great! You can put your music up there and charge anywhere from nothing to billions of dollars, if you'd like. You can also just stream the songs, or offer them up for download. It's fast and it doesn't have a bunch of bullshit busying up the page. It makes it 1000% easier to listen to a band. I'm sure there are other suitable replacements out there—leave them in the comments, if you'd like!
For events, feel free to use Facebook. Or one of the other 800 calendar-making programs out there. I'm putting together the latest live music/DJ listings for this week's paper and it forces me to go to MySpace pages to find calendars and IT'S THE WORST.
JUST PLEASE STOP USING MYSPACE. It makes my life so, so hard.