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***April Thirtieth Two Thousand and Eleven***

    

Hope everyone had a good easter, aka "the day before the candy goes half-price".  I am still feasting upon the blood
of the pastel colored Resses cups and jelly beans. 


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The instagr.am photos of the month...


Chelsea & Burt at the SPCA dog walk a few weeks ago.  My god is this dog a brat, but man
is he photogenic. 


An outhouse at Appomattox Court House National Historic Park.  Some civil war generals
might have taken a shit in there. 


Shenandoah National Park.  Well not all of it, just one of the trees. 


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I only have one link this month of any note - a really great video of Superchunk's "Crossed Wires".  Good to see folks
still going to the trouble to make videos.  It helps that the song is absolutely fantastic. 

Not really a link, but I recently ordered a couple of records from Dischord (Nation of Ulysses "Plays Pretty for Baby"
and Jawbox "Grippe")  - not only are the prices great, but I got a nice hand-written note with them.  A minor thing, but I
appreciated it.  Also, "Plays Pretty for Baby" enters a very elite group as a release that I've purchased in cassette,
CD, and vinyl.  And I still don't know why you cough up the cough syrup. 

I'm still writing shitty music reviews and depositing them over at the other site - new reviews this month from Tyvek,
Lower Dens, Destroyer, Low, Animal Collective, Danielson, Radiohead, Apex Manor, Fleet Foxes and Acid House
Kings. 

As a side note, searching "panda bear reggae" will send you to this site.  So ni hao, rasta man. 


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Warpaint
with PVT
Kings
4/3/2011

I bitched out on hitting the town Friday night to see Kurt Heasley, cause I wanted to watch my Oakland A's season
opener.  Then I didn't make it out Saturday cause Veelee had to cancel their show at Slims.  So with Sunday rolling
around, I was getting that itch that I needed to get out and see some live music, even if I wasn't overly excited about it. 
Turns out my lack of excitement matched the feelings I left with after the show.  Now is that a ringing endorsement or
what?

I got there part of the way through the set by PVT.  I knew absolutely nothing of them going in, and still don't know any
more than the three songs I saw them play, so factor that in as part of my half-assed uninformed review.  When I walked
in the room they were in the middle of a Ratatat-meets-Trans Am sounding track and I was thinking this band had some
real promise.  And then they followed that up with clubby dance pop that would have probably gone over well with the
fist pumping crowd.  These songs were not my bag at all, but it did make me curious what their recordings sound like -
were they more like the first rock-oriented song, or the later dance numbers?  I'm sure I'll come across them at some
point. 

I went into this show knowing that I really loved one Warpaint song, and was pretty indifferent about them otherwise. 
I did not leave the show feeling any different.  To give them credit, they are very talented - the drummer and bassist
especially, as solid a rhythm section as I've seen in a while.  And I'm not even saying that they are "good for girls" as
you often see in reviews - they are just good.  And they seem to be the rare all girl group around these days that don't
have an inkling of throwback to the original pop girl groups from the sixties.  No, these ladies are looking instead to the
nineties, somewhat occasionally heavy in a grunge sort of way but still have a pop sheen to them, and prone to slow
dirges.  Honestly, I'm not really sure how to describe their sound.  I know the crowd was eating it up like Napoleon de-
vouring a Ziggy Piggy, complete with a young man standing dead center with his arms raised the entire time squealing
like a, well, girl. 

But for me, I don't know...it didn't get me excited.  It wasn't bad, and I liked a couple of the songs a lot - one of them
being "Undertow", the only song of theirs I knew coming in.  And I liked most of their mellow shoegazey songs for the
most part.  But the upbeat dance-rock songs, I really could have done without all of those.  One of the songs even sound-
ed a little like the Slits/bad white reggae, and there ain't much I like less than bad white reggae.  I'm well aware that my
less-than-glowing review of these gals is not the norm, but I just wasn't feeling it. 

(Image found randomly online...looks like a press promo so I guess it's being used as is expected, assuming this counts
as press.  Also, there were no dudes in the band when I saw them, unless he was dressed as a girl.)


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Moon Duo
with Arbor Myst
Kings
3/23/2011

Arbor Myst started their set with the phrase "We have tapes and bamboo flutes for sale", so automatically my interest
was piqued.  They were a tag team approach on atmospheric electronic music, sounding a little bit like a modern score
for a Werner Herzog film about riding in a boat on the Amazon.  Maybe a sequel to "Fitzcarraldo" or something.  I'd like
to imagine this sequel would involve a crazy Brazilian trying to bring the jungle to a European opera house.  I would very
much like to watch this movie, someone contact Herzog.  Anyways, the music was enjoyable enough, not too exciting
live but at least they had some sort of Kon-Tiki/South Pacific sailing film showing during the set so you had something
to watch. 

Honestly, I didn't know dick about Moon Duo, But I do love Wooden Shjips and Erik Johnson is in both bands so why
not get out of the house and hear a little music?  Unlike the Shjips, Moon Duo isn't a full rock band, but is instead - wait
for it - a duo.  It's just Johnson and a woman known as Sanae Yamada according to the internets - with a bank of key-
boards and synths and what have you in front of them, plus Johnson doing work on the guitar and adding some vocals. 
Most reviews of the band seem to compare them to Suicide and kraut rock like Neu!, and the reason everyone says this
is because it's exactly what they sound like - both on record and live.  It was almost trance inducing - I'm pretty sure you
could use this music to hypnotize people.  In fact, I wonder if something happened at that show that I don't remember,
because I always cluck like a chicken anytime someone says "oranges" in front of me. 

(Photo found online.  I did not hang out with Moon Duo in a graveyard.)


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Polvo
with Wild Wild Geese
Kings
3/19/2011

Ever since Kings re-opened in the late summer last year, I've been waiting on a Polvo show...their bassist Steve Popson
is one of the club's owners, after all.  Well glory be to the flying spaghetti monster or whatever your deity of choice is, the
time is nigh.

But first, let us talk briefly about Wild Wild Geese.  I'd never even heard of these kids, but it was pretty good music.  The
best comparison I could come up with is mid-era Sonic Youth crossed with a little early Pavement plus a healthy dose of
the Chapel Hill indie jangle sound.  They sounded like a band that could have opened for Polvo on this night or in 1995,
they just had that timeless local sound that can be hard to define but you know it when you hear it.  The singer wore sun-
glasses while he sang, which struck me as a bit odd.  Then again I'd probably do that too, gives you a barrier to hide
behind, makes performing up in front of the gawking masses a little easier to handle.  The more I think about them in
hindsight the more I'm looking forward to seeing Wild Wild Geese again.

It would be damn near impossible for me to write a negative Polvo review, or even a mediocre one.  And I mean
mediocre in terms of their performance, not the quality of writing.  Mediocre writing is as good as it gets around these
parts.  So with that said...Polvo was really, really fucking awesome.  Color yourself surprised - I know I was!  Who
would have thought one of my all-time favorite bands would put on a great show!  It was a great set - some older songs,
some songs from the most recent record, and a couple of brand new tracks, one of which had almost a disco-like
beginning until it explodes in your face and ears and eye holes. 

The highlight of the evening was them playing "Fast Canoe" one of my all-time favorite songs of theirs.  They really
rocked it out - so much so that the drummer broke his kick drum.  And if them playing a great version of one of my fav-
orite songs isn't enough, while they were switching out the drums Dave filled the time by playing a little bit of the Who's
"Behind Blue Eyes", which then morphed into a made-up song about the super moon that was happening that night
(apparently the moon was super close to the earth and people were calling a super moon, which seems kinda dumb
because it wasn't even wearing a cape or anything - disappointing).  Maybe along with the disco rock there will be a
super moon song on their new album...assuming there is a new album.  Please let there be a new album. 

(Photo found online.  I have a much nicer boat sitting behind my cinderblock building.)


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Superchunk
with Veelee
Cat's Cradle
3/4/2011

Fuck I've seen Superchunk play a lot of times.  You might think it would get old after a certain point, but I'm excited to
see them each and every time they announce another show.  I've been listening to them for close to 20 years and
seeing them play live for over 15, and yet I still get as excited as I did at 18 to see Mac bounce around, stare at Laura
like a stalker, hear Jon play the fuck out of some drums and laugh at one of Jim's many smart ass comments. 

So there I was, towards the front-center but just off to the right, ready to hear them play the songs I love for the
gazillionth time.  And they did.  And I danced, at least so far as what I do would be called dancing.  And I sang along
with the crowd in that tone-deaf way that crowds do.  It was a grand old time, just like every other time I've seen them. 
I know that statement sounds a little dismissive, that this band is still the same as they were decades ago, but I mean
it as the highest compliment.  It's what you want out of a Superchunk show.  At some point I was looking around and
realized how young the crowd was...I'd been listening to this band longer than a bunch of these folks had been alive. 
That's a bit of a mind fuck, and god knows it makes me feel old, but hopeful at the same time that the Chunk appear
to still be resonating with the youth. 

The set list for the night was great - most of the new record "Majesty Shredding" was played, and it's a great record
so you'll get no complaints from me.  But the rest of the songs were almost as if they put a worm in my brain and read
my mind - "Detroit Has a Skyline", "Breadman", "The Question Is How Fast", "Driveway to Driveway" and "The First
Part" were all a part of the main set.  And then in the two encores they hit "Like a Fool", "Hyper Enough", "Punch Me
Harder", "Precision Auto", "Cast Iron" and "Throwing Things".  And maybe the most important song of the whole set -
a cover of the Misfit's "Where Eagles Dare"!  The crowd went nuts on that one.  I went nuts on that one.  I'm surprised
I had a voice the next day. 

Let me briefly mention Veelee, who opened the show.  I've seen them a bunch of times now and always really enjoy
their sets.  Let's put all the band references in one long run-on sentence and get them out of the way - Stereolab Sonic
Youth Moggs Young People.  The crowd seemed to dig them, and they had a few friends there good naturedly heckling
them between songs.  I'm not sure if this was the biggest show they've ever done, but they handled it well, sounded
great as always, and really set the stage nicely for the Superchunk set.  I'd highly recommend picking up their record if
you get a chance. 


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"Every time I come to this city, some guy picks me up at the bus station, takes me to a Leafs game, gets me pissed,
and then tries to blow me. Why can't people like me for me? "


Lovers - Boxer.  One of my very favorite records of last year, that I only got around to listening to this year.  Really ex-
cited to see them play soon.
Bonus: Don't You Want It

Mean Jeans - Steve Don't Party No More.   Another great record from last year that I was slow to give a strong listen
to.  Dumb, fun party punk.
Bonus: Case Race
Bonus: Total Creep

King Khan & BBQ Show - I'll Be Loving You.   Their most recent record wasthe worst they've put out, but it still had
some good songs on it. 
Bonus: Lonely Boy

Obits - Light Sweet Crude.  Anything Rick Froberg puts out, you know it's worth listening to.
Bonus: Widow of My Dreams

Richard Buckner - Town.  I may have posted one or both of these songs before.  I somehow ended up getting this
record twice.  You could have worse problems in the world. 
Bonus: Canyon

Teenage Fanclub - Baby Lee.  This song is one of their best tracks since the "Northern Britain" album.  So catchy.
Bonus: When I Still Have Thee

The National - Anyone's Ghost.  I'm  sure you already have these songs.  I'm posting them anyways. 
Bonus: Bloodbuzz Ohio





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