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***August Thirty First Two Thousand and Seventeen***



Instagrams -

Shit machines.  Cary, NC.

Lola put Burt to bed.  Cary, NC.

Old Dirty Bastard's biggest fan.  Cary, NC.  


Other Pics -

Somewhat recently refound scans from our Cambodia trip in February of 2008.  Not sure I posted them previously...the scans
were pretty
shitty, took a bit of tweaking even to make these few presentable.  


Videos and Such -

Somehow I went most of my entire life without seeing
Hard Ticket To Hawaii, and for that it hurts all the way down to
my soul.  So much insane dialogue, so many nutso acting performances, so many...boobs.  Lots of boobs.  

Lakai released their new video "The Flare Video," which I haven't seen but luckily Thrasher has been releasing the
"Extra Flare" clips for some/most/all the riders (not sure yet), which are sort of the "raw" files showing the struggle &
glory as each dude filmed their part.  Every one I've seen so far has been gold, with
Simon Bannerot getting my pick
as most amazing and
Raven Tershy as most enjoyable.  Plus Manchild and Jon Sciano ain't nothing to sneeze at

After a prolonged period of riding flow despite having already been pro for another company in the past, Chocolate
finally pulled the trigger and not only put 
Yonnie Cruz on the team, they bumped him straight back to the pro ranks
again.  Well deserved.  

Only one photo journal entry, some band photos from my extremely sparse show attendance these days.


With Waxahatchee and Ex Hex

I go from having never seen a show at the North Carolina Museum of Art to seeing two in two weeks...not only that, but
two of my all-time favorite bands.  Life is weird like that sometimes. 

Superchunk might be on my Mount Rushmore, but the band I was most excited about was openers Ex Hex.  I've seen
them a few times, but it had been a little while because apparently Mary Timony had been focusing most her time on
the Helium reissues and reunion shows.  In that time my love of their album "Rips" has only grown stronger - for my
money, the best power pop record of the last decade at least.  Just like every other time I've seen Ex Hex, they did not
disappoint - their short set was a mix of most of "Rips" plus a couple of new tracks which leaves me hopeful that their
sophomore effort will be along shortly.  It's rare I give a shit about the playing prowess of a guitarist, but Mary is just so
talented and fun to watch that in her case it's worth a mention - she is completely mesmerizing.  On top of that, their set
also featured both a drum solo and a bass solo (complete with hammer-ons!) that was totally awesome and not
annoying/indulgent like these things usually are.  Everyone pray to the god of your choice that there is a new Ex Hex
record in the near future, along with a tour to support it.  I need this.  The world needs this. 

You ever have one of those bands that you think you'll probably like, but you just need to spend more time listening to
their music?  Waxahatchee is one of those bands for me.  It's unclear to me if Waxahatchee is technically just front-
woman Katie Crutchfield and the rest are hired guns, or if it's an actual band, but either way her sister Allison (formerly
of the amazing Swearin') is now playing with her.  This information has no bearing on anything except to give me an
opportunity to remind everyone that they should be listening to Swearin'.  Anyways, here is my half-assed review of a
band I know nothing about...the five-piece was all female, and was wearing matching suits - except for Katie, who had
this flowing white dress thing that would have looked right at home on the stage of the Grand Ol' Opry in 1975.  From
a technical angle, the whole lot of them was damn talented.  Their upbeat songs, which was at least 2/3rds of their
set - I was feeling it.  Not entirely sure what to compare it to though, which drives me crazy - maybe a little bit like Jenny
Lewis? That's probably a fairly shit comparison but my music review OCD requires a comparison to something.  The
mellow songs I could have done without...they made me think of Lillith Fair, which makes me think of Sarah McLachlan,
which makes me think of sad puppies and kitties, and I hate thinking about sad animals.  At the end of their set I felt
the same as at the start - I need to spend more time listening to their music.

I'm not going to spend a lot of time on Superchunk - I've written about the group so many times before, likely more
than any other band by a long shot.  Their shows are always kinda the same - they play a ton of songs I love, Mac
jumps around a lot, Jon and Jim make the occasional witty quip, and I enjoy the hell out of myself - it's why I keep going
back again and again.  Here are my few notes that were, um, noteworthy: there was a lot of political talk from Mac,
which isn't surprising given the current climate.  They thanked pretty much every town in the Triangle sans Cary - pro-
bably an intentional omission, but shitting on Cary is just what the Triangle does.  Jon specifically noted he wanted to
thank Fuquay, but not Varina.  Given the show was outdoors and all ages, there were a number of kids there, and
specifically there was a 5-6 year old boy in the very front air drumming along with the songs that delighted me to no
end.  Given the impending remastered re-release of their first self-titled record, they played a bunch of songs off that
one.  Finally, and most importantly, the encore was two of my very favorite jams of all time: "Cast Iron" and "Detroit
Has a Skyline." 

I enjoyed the hell out of myself.  I look forward to seeing them again and again. 


Laetitia Sadier Source Ensemble
Cat's Cradle Back Room

I've been listening to a metric shit ton of Stereolab this summer, so Laetitia Sadier releasing a new album under the
name Laetitia Sadier Source Ensemble and going on tour could not have happened at a better time.  No, she/they
didn't actually play any Stereolab songs, but it was close enough - and getting to hear that deep, soothing voice of hers
sing anything was more than ok with me.  As for that voice - Laetitia might have aged (as have we all unfortunately), but
she sounds as perfect as the first time I heard her 25 plus years ago.  I can't say a lot about the set list because I don't
know her solo songs on that level, but I'm pretty sure a goo chunk of them was from their the latest album "Find Me
Finding You."  A few other observations:

 - Laetitia not only plays her guitar left-handed, but with the strings upside-down aka "Jimi Hendrix style."  I have no
   idea if calling it "Jimi Hendrix style" is actually a thing.  I probably made this same observation (at least mentally) the
   last time I saw Stereolab, but that was a long damn time ago. 
 - Including Sadier, the band was a four piece - drums/bass/guitar/synths.  Actually, everyone but Laetitia had synths,
   and at a couple points they were all playing at the same time.  They all also provided backing vocals here and there. 
 - The drummer was a total bad ass, rocking beats with one hand that most drummers half-assedly do with two.  Not
    that he only had one hand, it was just often engaged with other percussion like them shaky egg things, or playing

Sure, like the rest of their fans I'd love for Stereolab to reform and record new music, but this is truly the next best thing. 
While at the show, there were even a few moments where if I closed my eyes I could convince myself it actually was
Stereolab...with her voice, anything she does is going to invite the comparison, but she seems more than able to stand
up to her own legacy. 


Belle & Sebastian
North Carolina Museum of Art

Seeing Belle & Sebastian is always noteworthy, as they're the wife's favorite band (as well as one of mine), a band
we've traveled to different states and countries in order to see them perform live.  But not since our days in the Bay
Area have we been able to see them where we live, and that made this gig particularly special.  They performed at
the outdoors amphitheater at the North Carolina Museum of Art - I'd never seen a band play here before, and as
always I was skeptical of an outdoor show as the sound is usually garbage, and summer weather in the south isn't
the most conducive to standing in a crowd.  This place is great though - the sound was excellent, the sold out show
was full without being packed, and by sheer dumb luck that almost never happens around here in July, the weather
was perfection - low humidity and not too hot.  Perhaps best of all, there is a general admission standing area right
in front of the stage, leading to us getting the closest we've ever gotten to B&S live. 

Enough logistics though, how was the actual show?  Great, it's even possible for them to have a bad
performance (I may be slightly biased here)!  No string section this time, but they did have a local dude playing the
various trumpet parts (they typically recruit local folks for this role to cut down on touring costs, plus it's gotta be a hoot
for whoever gets to be in the band for a day).  As always they played plenty of hits ("The Boy with the Arab Strap," "I'm
a Cuckoo," etc); they also performed a couple of new ones, including the (supposedly) live debut of their new single
"We Were Beautiful."  The real story of this particular gig was how many older deep cuts were on the set list...hell, they
played five or so tracks from "The Life Pursuit," probably more than they did when they were actually touring to support
that record.  And they didn't even manage to play "Funny Little Frog," the one song from that record they play all the
time!  You can see the full set list here, but it's impressive the number of songs they haven't played at all in the last
decade, or only a handful of times. 

So, a damn fine time was had by all.  Hopefully the turnout and the enthusiasm the Triangle showed Belle & Sebastian
will translate in them playing again here the next time they tour the States...or at least within driving distance!


"If you wanna smear mud on your ass, smear mud on your ass - just be honest about it. Look, Gene, I've never told
anyone this before, but I can suck my own dick, and I do it a lot."

Cause Co-Motion! - Only Fades Away.  This band should have been bigger...they really understood a pop hook.  
Which Way Is Up?

David Bazan - Both Hands.  I don't know what prompted David Bazan (aka Pedro the Lion) to go eighties new
wave, but I ain't mad about it.  It actually goes well with his somewhat monotone voice/sound.  
With You

The Bob Seger System - 2+2=?  Bob ain't just pap such ala "Like A Rock" -  the dude knew how to write some 
damn good songs, especially in his early days.  
Ramblin' Gamblin Man

The Clean - Crazy.  The great thing about the Clean and really only becoming a fan in the last few years is they re-
leased a lot of material and I'm constantly finding great old material that is new to me.  
E Motel

I have a shitload of cover songs saved in a folder on my computer.  Here are a few a like that have nothing in common
other than I didn't scroll past the letter "B" looking for something to post.  
Ryan Adams - Revelator (Gillian Welch cover)
Animals - Bring It on Home to Me (Sam Cooke cover)
Beck & Emmylou Harris - Sin City (Gram Parsons cover)
Black Box Recorder - Uptown Top Ranking (Althea & Donna cover)
Blonde Redhead - Le Chanson de Slogan (Serge Gainsbourg cover)
Bush, Kate - Sexual Healing (Marvin Gaye cover)


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