The King Khan & BBQ Show
with The Jacuzzi Boys
The Grey Eagle
I managed to go to two good shows in Asheville in the span of three
days. I'm not sure this has ever happened in this
town, ever, unless you consider good shows to involve a lot of noodly
guitar or bad cover bands.
This was a double-bill of bands I wanted to see even...opening the
events were the Jacuzzi Boys, a trio of kids
Florida who weren't playing shitty metal or hardcore (I was given the
impression early in life that was the only sort of
bands who came from Florida). They did the dirty garage-punk
thing like the Black Lips have made popular recently,
only I'm pretty non-plussed by the Black Lips but found the Jacuzzi
Boys quite entertaining. They had a layer of pop to
their sound that made their gruff rockers quite catchy, which is
probably what held my ear so firmly and drove me to the
merch table later to pick up a seven inch by them. And now the
state of Florida is 1 for 4,376 in the "bands that don't
make you want to leap head-first into a moving train" competition.
I've seen the King Khan & BBQ Show many
times, both together and as separate entities, and this was by far the
worst crowd I've ever experienced. Like most "bad crowds", it's
really just a handful of assholes making everyone else
look stupid, but this group were going at it like there was an award to
be won for pissing off the greatest number of
people. It was so awful even the band was calling them out for
it, but they were either too dumb to understand what was
going on, or too high to care. At one point these two girls from
the ass pack (one of which looked to be in a heroin nod)
got on stage, wherein BBQ let them know that they had a strict "no
whores on stage" policy and they would have to
leave. Eventually a handful of them got kicked out and things
mellowed out a bit, but not before putting most of the
audience in a bad mood.
But you know what? Despite that crew of douche nozzles and douche
nozzlettes, it was still a fine outing the duo. King
Khan was dressed in his Sunday best sequined dress and matching veil,
complete with a trash can next to him in the
event he needed to vomit (apparently he had a touch of food
poisoning). They played nearly every song you'd want to
hear from them - "Waddlin' Around", "Fish Fight", "Shake Real
Low"...all your favorite doo-wop influenced garage rock
jams. There was even a brief cover song, as King Khan performed
Johnny Thunders' "You Can't Put Your Arms Around
a Memory" while BBQ fixed a broken drum pedal. As bad as much of
the crowd was, the band made up for it with a
raucous good time.
(Photo actually taken at a solo BBQ show in Oakland a few years back,
everything I took on this evening was shitty; and
yes, I realize I say this a lot...it's because I take a lot of bad
with Magic Babies
Nothing quite like a free show, just as god intended. If god were
This gig was a celebration of the launching of CyTunes,
a local music download website used to raise money for the
fight against cancer, dedicated to the memory of local man-about-town
and friend to all, Cy Rawls, who recently died
from the disease. Many local bands have released exclusive and
long out-of-print songs on the site, and I'd encourage
everyone truck on over there and do a bit of shopping.
Besides the website unveiling, there were some live bands as
well...first up was the Magic Babies, featuring a bunch
former members of The Weather. they played a very Sloan-like
piano/keyboard driven 70's power pop, lots of hooks
and harmonizing and pleasant vocal melodies. Their best songs
sounded like they could have been off a long lost
Records or 20/20 album, a high compliment in my book.
The main reason I drove over the the Hill from suburbia though was the Flute Flies. A local
"super group" of sorts,
featuring members of the Rosebuds, the Sames, Schooner and Ashley
Stove, these kids got together and wrote,
recorded and released a few tracks to be sold exclusively on
CyTunes. Their set consisted of these three songs, each
one of them a fine composition, as well as songs by their respective
original bands, only switched up a bit from their
original form. Even though Ivan of the Rosebuds was in the group,
when they chose to play a couple of his tracks ("Back
to Boston" and "Drunkards"), he didn't sing either, instead letting
others handle that duty. It gave songs that I knew
inside-out some new life, a fun bit of diversion from the
It was a great night, good times from start to finish, and for a good
cause on top of that. I'm sure Cy would have loved it.
rather be a gerbil on Fire Island during the Vaseline Day Parade than
see that movie."
Aesop Rock - None
Shall Pass. I've never been the biggest Aesop Rock
but this track is one of the best hip-hop
songs I've heard in ages.
Thieves (featuring El-P).
Black Mountain - Angels.
Part one of "I post a lot of goddamn Canadian music, that shit is so
hot right now!".
Ladyhawk - S.T.H.D.
would be part two.
Bonus: You Ran.
Pulp - Common
People. Pulp has been going through a renaissance in
my CD player lately.
Bonus: This Is Hardcore.
Shivvers - Teenline.
I don't know how many times I've posted this song, and I'm too lazy to
try and figure it out. It is
still one of the greatest pop songs of all time.
The Most Serene Republic - Compliance.
...And, part three. The trifecta is completed.
Bonus: Sherry And Her Butterfly Net.
The Smiths - Reel
Around The Fountain.
Yeah, you already know all if these songs by heart. But these are
session tracks, so, you know, they are slightly different.
Bonus: Sweet And Tender Hooligan.
Bonus: This Charming Man.
Bonus: William It Was Really Nothing.
Thousand and Nine***
TOP RECORDS OF 2008
A good year for music, it took some effort to get this down to just a
1. Eddy Current Supression Ring
– Primary Colours (Goner Records)
This is the only entry where the number matters...this was my favorite
record of the year, bar none. It's the bastard love
child of The Fall and Television, with a hint of garage rock gruffness
in the background. I can't think of the last record
to come out of Australia that I liked this much.
Admit My Faults.
Which Way To Go.
The rest of the top ten are just in alphabetical order...
2. Bon Iver - For Emma, Forever
The voice might take a little getting used to, but the songs
arebrilliant right from the start.
3. Constantines – Kensington
Heights (Arts & Crafts)
They've released four albums, and all four have made my top ten list
that year. When I conjure up an image of a pure
rock-n-roll band, this is the first group to pop in my mind.
What You Can Do.
4. Gentleman Jesse & His
Men – S/T (Douche Master Records)
It's nice that someone finally figured out power pop was perfected in
the late seventies and erly eighties, and decided
it would be in their best interests just to make music like that. All
I Need Tonight.
5. King Khan & the Shrines
- The Supreme Genius of King Khan & the Shrines (Vice Records)
Definitely the best party record of the year, and possibly the best
live show. Garage soul on a budget, priceless.
Wanna Be A Girl.
of the Freak.
6. M83 - Saturdays=Youth (Mute)
This band (performer?) gets a lot of grief for being stuck in the
eighties, but this sound is much too full to sound like
anything I listened to in my younger days.
7. The Notwist – The Devil, You
+ Me (Domino Records)
They'll never top the brilliance of their last full length "Neon
Golden", but this is a damn close effort.
8. The Rosebuds – Life Like
This North Carolina Duo (plus friends) continues to mature in their
effort to craft the perfect pop song. They get
closer with each album.
9. Sigur Rós - Með
Suð I Eyrum Við Spilum Endalaust (XL Records)
It sounds like old Sigur Ros, and I love old Sigur Ros. Only more
Mér Syngur Vitleysingur. Vid
Spilum Endalaust. Ára
10. Why? - Alopecia (Anticon Records)
This band continues to flat out deny classification, unless the only
classification you want to attach is "awesome".
The contenders that didn't quite make
Fleet Foxes - S/T
Nada Surf - Lucky
Okmoniks - Party Fever
Jay Reatard - Singles '08
Blowback - Morning Wood
Black Mountain - In
Destroyer - Trouble in Dreams
Crooked Fingers -
U.S. Christmas - Eat The Low Dogs
David Vandervelde - Waiting For The Sunrise
British Sea Power - Do
You Like Rock Music?
Johnathan Richman - Because
Her Beauty Is Raw And Wild
The disappointments, because I love
these bands and expected more:
My Morning Jacket - Evil Urges
TV on the Radio - Dear Science
Highly thought of albums that the
"kids" seem to love that I just don't get:
- The Chemistry of Common Life Kanye West -
808s and Heartbreak Fuck Buttons -
MGMT - Oracular Spectacular Cut Copy
- In Ghost Colours Lil Wayne
- Tha Carter III
Lykke Li - Youth Novels Crystal
Castles - S/T
No Age - Nouns Santogold - S/T