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***November Thirtieth Two Thousand and Nine***


Just barely got an entry in for the month of November...have been slow rolling this one for a good two weeks.  But I have
high hopes to make another post BEFORE we leave for Costa Rica in a little over a couple of weeks. 

Another lost photo from our cross-country drive in March 2008:

I am pretty sure this was in or just outside of Capital Reef National Park in Utah.  Unless my brain is completely failing
me, this old cabin was parked near some ancient Native American cliff drawings that you could look at through one of
those enormous coin operated binoculars attached to a stand. 


Built to Spill
The Cat's Cradle

I've really been firing on all cylinders lately when it comes to getting to the club right when the band I want to see starts
playing.  I walked in the door just as Built to Spill began their first song, and despite the packed house I was able to
nook right in near the front by the side of the stage.

At this point in my life I've seen this band play probably close to twenty times (if not more), and I knew full well what this
night had in store for me.  As always, BtS played a fantastic mix of songs from across their entire catalog - off the top
of my head I can recall "Virginia Reel Around the Fountain", "Carry the Zero", "Stop the Show", "Reasons", "You Were
Right", and "The Weather".  As always I would have killed to hear more songs from "Perfect from Now On", a statement
I have made after every one of their shows...even the shows where they played a lot of those songs.  Just can't get
enough of that album, even 12 years later. Surprisingly, as Doug and company just released a new record called
"There Is No Enemy", there were very few new songs, just fan favorite after fan favorite for the better part of two hours. 

Sadly, another truism of any Built to Spill show also reared it's ugly head  - the terrible, awful crowd.  For reasons un-
clear to me for well over a decade, assholes and idiots love this band.  This may be saying as much about me as it is
about the rest of the crowd, but the personalities that infest any given Built to Spill show are the worst mix of drunks, frat
boys and douchbags.  And this isn't just a Chapel Hill thing - most of my live viewings of Built to Spill happened in San
Francisco, and it was no different there.  The constant yelling of inane things at the band. The bouncers having to break
up a fight in what looked to be the strangest, most inappropriate "mosh pit" I've seen in ages.  And then there was the
gaggle of chatty women standing behind me, referring to themselves as "cougars" and sticking their garbage and beer
bottles in the hood of my pullover.  There really should be some sociological studies done on this strange gathering
awkward, useless chaff, but I guess it says a lot about what a great live band Built to Spill is that anyone with any sense
would suffer these fools. 


The Cat's Cradle

So I've seen this newly reformed Polvo a number of times now, and even in my super fanboy status, it's hard to deny
they aren't getting more and more awesome with each and every gig.  Yes, awesome, that is the technical word for
their performance, I saw it in a technical handbook on show descriptions.  They've certainly gotten a lot of tighter, what
with the touring and the practicing and the recording a new album, tighter than they ever sounded pre-break-up. 

Given that they did just record a new album, "In Prism", I was a little surprised that they didn't play more songs from it. 
It's got to be a tough balance for a band that has been around for a long time that has a large catalog to get the ratio
of new songs and older fan favorites down on their set list.  Obviously most of the crowd usually wants to hear their
favorite song, while the band really wants to play these new tracks they are proud of.  I'm almost always on the "play
the old shit" side of the fence; but unlike most material that gets released by groups post-reunion, the new Polvo
record is really damn good. 

Anyways, yadda yadda yadda, the new record is great but they still played almost entirely old songs.  Not that I'm
complaining, but my faulty memory can only recall "Beggar's Bowl"; a couple more new ones would have been nice. 
What they did play was a super-extended version of "Bombs That Fall From Your Eyes" that sounded like Polvo
crossed with "Umma Gumma" era Pink was one of the best things I've heard in months.  Maybe through
some magic of the internets someone out there reading this review bootlegged the show and can hook me up with
a copy of that song, I would be forever grateful. 

As a side note/complaint, I tried buying the vinyl of their new album on my way out of the club, and they were sold out! 
I had been putting off buying it for a while because I wanted to wait and get it when the money would be directly going
to the band, but no such luck.  And then a couple weeks later I stopped by Schoolkids in Raleigh to make the purchase...
of course they were also sold out.  It's almost comical that I've had such a tough time buying a record by a local band
released on a local label, but on the bright side it means Polvo is moving units and that is definitely great for them. 
One of these days I'm going to finally find and buy that damn record...


Lonnie Walker
Golden Belt (Rock & Shop Vintage Market)

So there was this "Rock and Shop" event going on during the day in Durham, and what the hell - I like to both rock and
shop, so it seemed like a good idea to attend.  It helped that two of my favorite local groups were playing - Mount
Weather and Lonnie Walker, though when we were walking into the event we passed the Mount Weather guys loading
their gear out...bummer on that, I was hoping to see them play again.  But Lonnie Walker was still due to play, and after
a bit of strolling around with the wife while she gawked and glad handed over a number of small craft tables, the band
made with the music and I watched them rock out while the old lady continued to shop.  I still struggle to figure out who it
is Lonnie Walker remind me of - I know everyone else says Bob Dylan, and I can see where they are coming from, but
there is a lot more to it than that.  I previously mentioned the Talking Heads and I still get that vibe on some of their
tracks, but there is a rootsy, almost Band-like feel to their music.  All I know is their songs are instantly stuck in your
head, and I wasn't the only one entranced - there were a couple of small kids standing next to me who were downright
mesmerized by the live rock action.  It's good to know I've got more in common with small children than just my overly
picky diet...a mutual love of fantastic music too!


"I'm going to get into an aerodynamic tuck, and use the dildo to cusion my fall!"

I don't particularly have anything to say about all of these songs, except they are all good because I wouldn't have bother-
ed posting them otherwise. 

Dead Meadow - Between Me And The Ground

These three songs were taken from some late-seventies/early-eighties Australian Punk compilation...all Brisbane
bands if I remember correctly.  
Young Identities - Instant Feelings
Just Urbain - Burning
Bonus: Everybody Loves

Mississippi Fred McDowell - Good Morning Little Schoolgirl.  The title/subject matter of this song probably
sounded a lot less sketchy in the day that it was recorded.

Shellac - Steady As She Goes

The Felice Brothers - Boy From Lawrence County.  I was unsure about this band for some time but I'll be damned
if their album "Yomder Is the Clock" didn't really get under my skin and become a must-listen.
Bonus: Penn Station

The Hold Steady - Constructive Summer

The Twilight Sad - Half A Person (Smiths cover)

The Undertones - Teenage Kicks
Bonus: Girls Don't Like It
Bonus: Top Twenty.

T-Model Ford - Chicken Head Man.  Go see this man live if he comes through your town - there probably won't be
many years left to see a true American musical genius.
Bonus: Wood Cuttin' Man


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