Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Check out Citified

Photo courtesy of Mich Diaz, 2008 In case you didn't realize it, shoegazer rock is alive and well in Greensboro, in the guise of the band Citified. I've been listening to their beautiful, jangly, lush sophomore release, "The Meeting After the Meeting," which is out now on Eskimo Kiss Records. I have not seen this band live, and it looks like they don't have any upcoming Triangle dates (they're at the Flatiron in Greensboro on Feb. 22.). But I have enjoyed this CD, which channels The Smiths and Echo and the Bunnymen at times, but really reminds me of a couple of bands I'd forgotten how much I loved: Ride and The Stone Roses. 

The Loners on the radio right now!

Check out the bulletin just sent out on Myspace:

Tune in to WFMU today from Noon-3pm to hear us 'live' on 'Three Chord Monte' with Joe Belock!!

live streams here:


Monday, January 28, 2008

Reminder: Casting for Richard Bacchus video this Sunday

I've written about this before, but Mike Spence just sent this out on Myspace. If you've ever wanted to be in a video, now is your chance!

From Mike:
We need extras to come out and help us on Feb 3rd which I know is Super Bowl Sunday but we will be done before that starts. We need people to show up at Slim's Downtown on 227 S. Wilmington St. Raleigh at 10:00am Sunday morning wearing buisness class/buisness casual. The idea of the scene is to try and make the shot look as though it's a buisness weekday in downtown.

Refreshments will be provided. This is a nonpaying job we are simply asking for volunteers. Your help is and will be greatly appreciated. You will also be given a credit for your help in this project. For any questions please contact us at...


Friday, January 25, 2008

Now, here's my Great 8!

Hopefully by now you have had a chance to check out The News & Observer's Great 8 package.I think David put together a nice selection of artists, but since our musical tastes are significantly different, I have my own personal list of Great 8 bands. I would, however, like to thank David for introducing me (musically, that is) to Small World. I don't have a multimedia package to go with my list, but I have provided links to Web sites and Myspace sites. I hope you check them all out, and please feel free to leave your own personal lists in the comments section. This is in no particular order.

Megafaun Megafaun: David and I agree that this Raleigh freak-folk group is creating some of the most original, compelling music in the Triangle right now. Their live shows can take on the feel of a jam-rock tent revival. Check out the footage in the Great 8 package to see first hand what I'm talking about. Check out "Lazy Suicide." And go see them tonight at Local 506.

 The T's The T's: I've hyped The T's so much that people are starting to give me crap about it. I still believe they're the best, most exciting straight-up rock band in the area. This can be their year to break out of the Triangle if that's what they want to do. Check out "The Police." Don't miss their CD-release party on Feb. 8 at Slim's.

 Double Negative Double Negative: This is serious old-school hardcore done by guys who remember it from the beginning and know how it should be done. Check out their CD, "The Wonderful And Frightening World of Double Negative" on No Way Records. Check out "Stop Growing." Next local show is March 7 at Downtown Event Center with RTX.

 Richard Bacchus Photo by Mike Spence Richard Bacchus & the Luckiest Girls: Former D Generation guitarist Richard Bacchus truly is the local king of sleazy, boozy, gutter-punk. Check out "Terrible Love," my current favorite song. Video shoot at Slim's on Feb. 3. He'll be touring in Europe throughout March, but should be playing locally after that.

 Ex-Members The Ex-Members: This Durham electro dance-punk trio grew from the ashes of The Butchies and Gerty -- one of the most underrated bands ever to come from this area. Check out "Big Black Goodbye," and check them out next Saturday, Feb. 2, at Nightlight in Chapel Hill.

 Goner by Jenn Love Goner: Another group that grew out of an underrated band (in this case, Boy Wonder Jinx), Goner makes angsty keyboard rock that actually does rock while it breaks your heart. And Scott Phillips is a Big Country fanatic, which I think is really cool. No local shows listed.

 FKON by Bill Schimpf Future Kings of Nowhere: Incredibly catchy, high-energy, electro-acoustic, brainy pop that's like an updated Violent Femmes. Check out "I'm Still Waiting," and check them out this Friday, Feb. 1, at the WKNC benefit at The Pour House.

 The Moaners, by Reakcija The Moaners: Trailer Bride bandleader Melissa Swingle's current band is a swampy and loopy as her previous band, but with the addition of drummer Laura Terry (who was also in Gerty), this one rocks HARD. Check out "Terrier." No upcoming local dates. Honorable Mention: Red Collar: I really like what I've heard of this band, but since I haven't actually seen them live, I don't feel right about putting them on my list. They have some great footage on the Great 8 multimedia. Midtown Dickens: Sometimes a little too maddeningly precious, but also sometimes take-your-breath-away gorgeous. Man Will Destroy Himself: The latest incarnation of a long-running hardcore band. I never saw them back in the day, but I like what I'm hearing now.

More Great 8-related news

This is from a myspace bulletin just sent out by I Was Totally Destroying It:

ALSO: Tune in this evening to WKNC 88.1fm to hear Red Collar, Megafaun, and yours truly- IWTDI -discussing the great 8 and more with DJ Stevo. If you're out of the area, stream it at wknc.org. We're on 6-8pm TONIGHT!

Great 8 showcase of sorts this Saturday!

In last night's response to the Indy article, I totally forgot to mention that three of the 2008 Great 8 bands (Megafaun, Red Collar and I Was Totally Destroying It) are playing this Saturday at Local 506. Actually, I mentioned it last week, but at the time couldn't reveal that it was a Great 8 show. So, go to this show. I highly recommend all three bands. It's my weekend to be on-call at work, so I will, sadly, not be going. That's too bad, because I still haven't seen Red Collar and would have liked to have checked them out. If you're in Raleigh tonight, you should also check out Sir Arthur & the Royal Knights with Grass Widow at Slim's. I had originally planned to be out for this one, but will likely stay home tonight too.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Addressing The Indy's article on the upcoming N&O Great 8

Tomorrow, The News & Observer, the paper where I work as a Web content producer, will publish its annual Great 8, rock critic David Menconi's list of eight local bands that are really going to be deserving of your attention in the coming year. If you go to that URL now (Thursday, Jan. 24), you'll see a teaser video for tomorrow's big multimedia package, which several folks -- including myself in a very small way -- helped create. Tomorrow, the full story and multimedia will be available. Other than that, I have nothing to do with local music coverage in the N&O. This past Wednesday, The Independent Weekly, the alt-weekly where I was music editor before moving to The N&O, published a scathing and misinformed critique of The News & Observer's local music coverage. Grayson Currin, the current music editor at the Indy, wrote the article, and I actually believe he has a point. The N&O should do more on local music. But isn't the timing a little strange here? The N&O does a big piece on local music so, it's time to write about how the paper doesn't cover local music? And what's up with the horn-tootin' on the Birds of Avalon piece? Is the real argument here "The N&O doesn't write about local music, but we do, so we're great"? How does this argument tie in with the limp defense of the controversial "Eh, Whatever" that also found its way into Grayson's article? Singling out David Menconi personally in that is pretty unfair, considering the fact that David DOES write quite a bit about local music, and frequently breaks big stories, on his blog. Having artwork that seems to personally lampoon David is not just snarky, it's mean. But what continues to stick in my craw is the fact that the article names this year's Great 8, two days ahead of when the line-up is supposed to be officially announced. Now, I know the Great 8 is not exactly a state secret. Anyone who knows anything about local music can look at the teaser video and figure it out. But going ahead and spilling the beans has a "gotcha" feel that's just plain childish. My co-workers seem a lot less concerned with this than I am. Most seem to feel (rightly) that this article will only lead new people to the Great 8 and the multimedia. I hope it does, because it's a great package, and a fine list of bands. I'm planning to release my own Great 8 tomorrow (sans the nice multimedia package). Just like last year, most of my choices will be different from David's, but we do agree on one band: Megafaun -- which, in case you didn't know, is the band of Bradley Cook, Grayson's roommate and the guy with whom he founded Burly Time Records. You'll have to check in tomorrow to find out about the other seven.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

A realization

Yesterday marked my fifth anniversary as a blogger. If you want to read my goofy first post, go here.

I started this blog on a dare. I was doing an article for the N&O on local people who were doing something new and technologically cutting edge: blogging. I went to a local bloggers meet-up and interviewed several very cool people. One of them basically told me there was no way I could truly understand bloggers unless I started a blog of my own. I thought he was right, but really had no idea what I would write about -- even though I'd been a music critic for years.

The idea to concentrate mainly on LOCAL music actually didn't hit me until fairly recently. That really happened in 2005 when I bought a digital camera that allowed me to shoot quicktime movies. That's when I discovered Flickr, Youtube and Google calendar, and started really getting excited about what I was doing.

Over the years this blog has been all over the place, from music criticism in general, to piracy and downloading issues. I've even flirted with podcasting, but decided that's too time-consuming for me, though I do want to get back into creating .mp3s from my old 45s and putting them online.

So anyway, I'm going to pat myself on the back here. I don't do it often, but I think it's well deserved.

Saturday, January 19, 2008

New video from I Was Totally Destroying It

I Was Totally Destroying It
has just released their new video for "Summer State." Here's what they had to say about it in their Myspace bulletin:

Here it is, folks. We spent a beautiful Saturday in early December with our new friend Brett Mullen(and Noah Howard- one of the starts of the video! ...and Aimee Argote, who just sat there and laughed at us) and his crew and shot our first music video here in Chapel Hill.

We hope you enjoy it. Brett did an amazing job- hopefully we'll eventually be able to figure out how to upload a very high quality version, because it looks great, but for now, this grainy version will do!

Stay tuned- pretty soon we will be posting a very funny "bloopers and outtakes" reel from the shoot.

(You can also find this video on Youtube and Myspace videos, although both are even a bit lower quality than this...damn you, internet!)

If you like this video, you should check out their upcoming show, next Saturday, Jan. 26, at Local 506 with Red Collar and Megafaun.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Debut of Rocket Cottage

So, Russ De Sena has yet another band. This one is called Rocket Cottage, and I like them quite a bit. They had their debut show last night with The Loners at White Collar Crime in Raleigh. This video is good for audio purposes only, WCC has the worst lighting of any venue in town, so every video I make there is even worse than normal. They were showing some old bicycle videos in the background, so I think you can see some of that in the video. Check it out:

Rocket Cottage from Mann's World on Vimeo.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

A trip down Raleigh's harcore memory lane

Double Negative guitarist Scott Williams has been posting a bunch of old fliers and photos from the Triangle's early-'80s hardcore scene. Check them out on his Flickr account.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

From Lonely to Lucky

Yes, I know that it's Richard Bacchus & the LUCKIEST Girls. I don't know why I typed LONELIEST on everything I wrote about them.

Monday, January 14, 2008

The birth of Yerrypalooza

OK, so last night's post and myspace bulletin about my dream line-up wasn't entirely accurate, but it also wasn't a joke. It turns out that Richard Bacchus and The Bleeding Hearts were both supposed to practice last night. Over dinner, members of both bands and of The T's decided to just practice at Slim's. Unfortunately not everyone in The T's or Suburban Sweethearts could actually make it to such a last-minute show. (Richard Bacchus & the Luckiest Girls) That ended up being OK, because Richard Bacchus and The Bleeding Hearts both played, and various members guest-starred in each other's bands. Totally low-key, even though a surprising number of people made it out. It really was pretty much like hanging out at someone's house, drinking beer and watching their band practice. That's a good thing. At some point someone started calling the event Yerrypalooza in honor of Bleeding Hearts guitarist Joe Yerry. Maybe that means it'll be an ongoing event. Sunday night practice sessions at Slim's. Check out the videos below, and the photos I took on Flickr.

Richard Bacchus & the Luckiest Girls from Mann's World on Vimeo.

Richard Bacchus & the Luckiest Girls

Richard Bacchus with Joe Yerry from Mann's World on Vimeo.

Richard with Joe Y

The Bleeding Hearts from Mann's World on Vimeo.

Bleeding Hearts playing a brand new song.

Sunday, January 13, 2008

Awesome free show TONIGHT

Seriously, it's like someone read my mind and put together my dream show. This is not a joke.

Karen leaves her comfort zone

One of my resolutions this year is to actually try and make this a Triangle-wide music blog. As much as I'd like to be lazy and stay in Raleigh every night, I need to check out what's happening in Durham and Chapel Hill, especially since Durham is quickly becoming the local hotspot for new music. I went to Bull City Headquarters which is a cool, but rather hard to find, alcohol-free arts space, in a run-down building in a pretty sketchy area of town. There are free zines there, miss-matched couches and lamps, and signs prohibiting homophobia and racism. It's also some sort of bicycle collective, so there are literally thousands of bicycles outside the space (see below). I like it because its DIY attitude reminds me of the original Miracle House (the one in the factory) years ago in Greensboro. While there, I checked out The Prayers and Tears of Arthur Digby Sellers, a Chapel Hill band with an accordion, acoustic guitar and stand up bass. They managed to wow me even though they're a bit quieter than what I generally like. They have one completely devastating song, "Going to Charity," which is, unfortunately, not among the two songs I captured. Check them out below. The first one was actually their first song, and just featured three members. After that a couple of people joined them onstage with the stand-up bass and xylophone.

Another one by the Prayers & Tears of Arthur Digby Sellars from Mann's World on Vimeo.

The second band was The Great White Jenkins from Richmond. They have a real loose, bluesy, almost gospel thing going on, and the crowd was really into them. I honestly didn't quite know what to think about them. They almost seem like a caricature of outsider folk music, where emotion and zeal often outrank technical ability. But since this is a group of young guys from the city, with good equipment, I'm not buying it. I didn't stick around for Megafaun, because I had previous plans to meet up with a friend in Raleigh. I ended up at Slim's where a cover band was playing a birthday party. The only thing I can say about that is I do not appreciate being groped by a bunch of women all getting down to "The Needle and the Spoon" while I'm trying to make my way to the back of the bar.

Wednesday, January 09, 2008

Goner tomorrow night, plus a download!

I must apologize in advance because even though I've been driving around listening to an advance copy of Goner's "Rock 'n' Roll Always Forgets," I didn't bother to try and upload it to my computer until just now. That's when I realized that the song titles aren't listed in the track information, so I have no idea of the name of the song listed here. It's the first one on the CD. I have an e-mail out to Chris Dalton, so maybe he'll get back with me soon about the title, and I'll pass it on to you. they apparently have another download available at the Indy's site, so if you like this song, you might like that one as well.

Goner is playing tomorrow night (Thursday) as part of the local band, local brew night at Tir na nOg. The show is free, and you get samples of Big Boss brew. Plus, The T's are opening. Advance warning: The T's are going to have their CD-release at Slim's with The Lonely H, who were seriously one of the most amazing bands I saw last year. That show is Feb. 8.

A couple of other cool shows I'm going to try and go to this week:

  • The Loners, Wednesday, Jan. 16, at White Collar Crime (free!) with Russ DeSena's new band Rocket Cottage.

  • Megafaun, this Saturday, Jan. 12, at Bull City Headquarters. I haven't been to Bull City HQ yet, so I'm really going to try and make it out for this one.

    Now, here's that Goner song.

    UPDATE: this song is called "Better than Blue"

    Download it here

  • Friday, January 04, 2008

    Cartridge Family CD-release

    I've been enjoying The Cartridge Family's "Shine Like a Bottle" for a while now. Now the band will have their official CD-release party tomorrow night at Sadlack's. In case you're not aware, shows at Sad's are typically early (7:30-ish), which means you can head down to Slim's afterward to see Richard Bacchus & the Luckiest Girls. Check out "So Much", which is my favorite song off of "Shine Like a Bottle".

    Want to be in a video

    Check out this call for actors for the upcoming Richard Bacchus video:

    Thursday, January 03, 2008

    Hideaway shows to be moved

    Marianne sent this list out on Guitartown last night. As of Jan. 25, all Hideaway shows will be moved to other venues. If you had plans to see an upcoming show, the new venue will be listed beside the show name.

    Friday 1/25 Berkeley Cafe
    Wayne "The Train" Hancock
    9:30 PM show
    Tickets: $12 Advance / $15 Day Of Show

    Saturday 1/26 Lincoln Theatre
    Don Dixon & The Jump Rabbits
    w/ Tad Dreis
    9:30 PM show
    Tickets: $15 Door

    Tuesday 1/29 Berkeley Cafe
    Asylum Street Spankers
    8:30 PM show
    Tickets: $12 Advance / $15 Day Of Show

    Thursday 1/31 Berkeley Cafe
    Malcolm Holcombe
    8:30 PM show
    Tickets: $10 Advance / $12 Day Of Show

    Friday 2/1 Berkeley Cafe
    Blue Dogs
    w/ Old Habits
    9:30 PM show
    Tickets: $12 Advance / $15 Day Of Show

    Saturday 2/2
    Unknown Hinson
    9:30 PM show
    Tickets: $15 Advance / $15 Day Of Show

    Sunday 2/3 Berkeley Cafe
    Scott H Biram
    7 PM show
    Tickets: $10 Advance / $12 Day Of Show

    Thursday 2/7 Berkeley Cafe
    American Songwriter's Tour
    The Wrights
    Jason Eady
    Stephen Simmons
    8:30 PM show
    Tickets: $10 Door

    Friday 2/8 Berkeley Cafe
    Jason Ringenberg - CD Release
    Two Dollar Pistols
    9:30 PM show
    Tickets: $10 Advance / $12 Day Of Show

    Saturday 2/9 MATINEE Berkeley Cafe
    Farmer Jason
    1 PM show - reservations needed
    a 2nd show may be added if reservations warrant
    Tickets: $5 for any age
    email Marianne at mtaylormusic@aol.com to make your reservations

    Saturday 2/9 LATE NIGHT Berkeley Cafe
    9 PM Show
    Tickets: $10 Advance / $12 Day Of Show

    Wednesday 2/13
    Beat Circus
    w/ Mad Tea Party
    8:30 PM show
    Tickets: $8 Advance / $10 Day Of Show

    Thursday 2/14 Valentine's Day Berkeley Cafe
    The Belleville Outfit
    CD Release Party
    8:30 PM show
    Tickets: $8 At The Door

    Saturday 2/16 Berkeley Cafe
    Jesse Dayton
    9:30 PM show
    Tickets: $8 Advance / $10 Day Of Show

    Tuesday 2/26 Berkeley Cafe
    Willy Porter
    8:30 PM show
    Tickets: $10 At The Door

    Saturday 3/15 Berkeley Cafe
    Terry Adams' Rock N Roll Quartet (of NRBQ)
    9:30 PM show
    Tickets: $15 Advance / $15 Day Of Show

    Saturday 4/19 Berkeley Cafe
    Bill Kirchen & Too Much Fun
    9:30 PM show
    Tickets: $12 Advance / $15 Day Of Show

    Wednesday, January 02, 2008

    New Year's Eve roundup

    Despite plans to go see SCOTS at the Hideaway, I ended up at First Night. Now that the Hideaway's closing, I feel kind of bad, though I doubt my $25 would have really made a difference in their finances! I kind of had to have my arm twisted to go to First Night, because every other time I've gone, it's been kind of lame. You pay way too much to go, it's all family oriented, and there's no booze. I'm not sure if we did something wrong (or right as the case may be), but no one checked to see if we were wearing a button as we walked through the crowd. Unfortunately they did check us when we tried to get up close to see Tift Merritt, which is why this video was shot from WAAAY in the back of the crowd. So, here you go. For hardcore Tift fans only! (Video removed) If it makes you feel any better, this person got right up front and created this medley of the show. Eventually we found our way to Slim's where Brite Boy (pictured above) was playing. I got footage of their first song, which turned out to be my least favorite one. Oh well. A good excuse to see them again. I really liked them more and more as the set went on. You can't really see it, but the bass player was wearing gigantic headphones, which was appropriate because this band is LOUD. (Video removed) While at Slim's I lost one of my earrings (at least I think it was at slim's). If you find a dangling earring shaped like a star with "diamonds" on it, please give it back to me and I will buy you a PBR.

    Hideaway to close

    David Menconi has the scoop on his blog.