Seattle Subsonic - August, 2008
Greetings and “good winter” from Bon Iver (‘bone eevair’ in Americanese), Night Canopy and AA Bondy. Here’s a short-notice heads-up on a great show taking place at Neumos tonight.
I fell in love with Bon Iver (AKA Justin Vernon) when my wife brought home “For Emma, Forever Ago” after hearing it on KEXP. Whether you take it song by song or listen to the album as a whole–and no matter where you or your head is at–you’re gonna be transported into a strange but comforting place where the heart is both breaking and hopeful and the mood is parts withdrawn and triumphant. The album has texture and depth and layers of instrumentation buried so subtly that you want to keep listening so you can begin to peel them back while you feel your way into the warm darkness within. If you can’t make the show, I recommend the album highly. And the story behind the recordings makes it all the more intriguing. Check it out and see for yourself.
The opening acts, Night Canopy and AA Bondy are also really intriguing. I researched them after seeing the acts on the playbill, and I was really impressed with both artists’ songs and sound. Should be a nice complement to a night that will no doubt run the gamut of emotions and dynamics.
Bon Iver, Night Canopy, AA Bondy – $12 @ Neumos, doors open at 8pm.
The is a shiver is passing through the very heart and soul of the Seattle music scene as the 2008 Seattle Weekly’s REVERBFest peeks out from behind the Bumbershoot mamoth. Boasting over 60 Seattle area bands in the lineup, ReverbFest is picking up some serious momentum. As we close in on one month until the “big show”, October 4th is already looking to go down as one of the greatest conglomeration of local talent I can ever remember having seen. Palms are getting sweaty… pupils dilating… this is like porn for the Northwest audiophile. They’re going to be pouring it ON with everything from Hip Hop to Country, featuring the old bucks straight through to the spring chickens. I count no less than 9 stages littered throughout the thick of Ballard’s hip-happenest area mostly on Ballard Ave and Market. 5 of these venues even are billed as all-ages. It appears that the 30 somethings and the 13 year olds hanging at the Ballard Bowl will have yet another topic to on which to meet eye to eye. Another great way to piss off the condo associations.
Below we have a full schedule that is about 99% solid for all the venues involved. You’ll also find tunes from some of the bands we’d recommend you make an effort to catch to help get you jazzed. Peruse the other band links to check out some music from bands you haven’t hear before. I’ve already found some new favorites, such as Blood Red Dancers (Sunset), and Trombone Cake. (Lock and Keel). Last year this event cost all of 8 clams. Dunno exactly what’s planned this go-round, but I’m betting it’s going to be worth it. (give songs a sec to load)
YEAH! Bring on ROCK-Tober! (*=Recommended)
THE SUNSET TAVERN 5433 Ballard Ave NW
12:30am – The Moondoggies
10:30pm – Madraso
9:30pm – Team Gina
8pm – Police Teeth (live on 90.3 KEXP Audioasis)
6:30pm – Brothers Of The Sonic Cloth (live on 90.3 KEXP Audioasis)
5pm – Sage
4pm – Blood Red Dancers*
3pm – Thee Sgt Major III
THE TRACTOR TAVERN 5213 Ballard Ave NW
12am – Shim
11pm – North Twin*
10pm – Massy Ferguson
9pm – 17th Chapter*
8pm - Lonesome Rhodes & The Good Company
7pm – Michael Vermillion
6pm - Kate Tucker & The Sons Of Sweden
5pm – Zach Harjo
4pm – Elder Mason
MARKET STREET ATHLETE (ALL-AGES) 2232 NW Market St
SALMON BAY EAGLES (ALL-AGES) 5216 20th Ave NW
10pm – Aqueduct
9pm – Mono In VCF
8pm – Boat
7pm – Black Whales
6pm – Panda & Angel
5pm – The Lonely Forest
4pm – The Monday Mornings
3pm – C-Leb & A-Bro*
MR SPOT’S CHAI HOUSE (ALL-AGES TILL 10PM) 5463 Leary Ave. NW
11pm – Diminished Men
10pm – The Curious Mystery
9pm – Man Plus*
8pm – Pufferfish
7pm – Husbands Love Your Wives
6pm – Arbitron
HATTIES HAT (ALL AGES) 5231 Ballard Ave NW
LOCK AND KEEL 5144 Ballard Ave NW
12am – At The Spine
11pm – The Quit*
10pm – Trombone Cake*
9pm – Red Jacket Mine
8pm – Gatling Gees
7pm – The Little Penguins
6pm – The Braille Tapes
CONOR BYRNE’S 5140 Ballard Ave NW
THE BIT SALOON 4814 17th Ave NW
TRIPLE (ALL AGES) 5227 Ballard Ave NW
Hey kids, you might remember how the Prids got the shit kicked out of them by a faulty tire a month ago. It was (is) bad. Well, some of their Sea-town friends, Romance, the Arid Sea, and the Blood Red Dancers, are trying to give ‘em a hand by rockin’ your balls off at the Funhouse tonight.
Romance sounds a bit like early 80s synth-rock (kinda like the Prids), the Arid Sea has a similarly gloomy outlook, and the Blood Red Dancers might remind you of a lo-fi version of the Doors (right, Kev?). 6 bucks at one of the best venues in town. Be there or be eternally square.
…is not that hot. But this is:
Me + Yr Daughter
A little Thursday morning pick-me-up. Glistening Pleasure is out now, but you can listen to more here.
BC Campbell leads his band of merry men, the Celebrity Orphans to the Comet for a long overdue live performance. This is upbeat, heart-felt rock and roll that cannot be ignored.
Joining The Celebrity Orphans are an eclectic mix of local Seattle players ranging from ol’ timey to dark and grimey.
At the Comet Tavern.
Cost: (acc to The Celebrity Orphans’ MySpace… ) CHEAP!
Read all about my craaaaaaaazy recommendations HERE. NOW.
Well we may have initially encouraged everyone to get tickets to see TV on the Radio play the Showbox as soon as they went on sale, (as well you SHOULD have) but as it turns out good things come to those who wait(ed).
For today (Tues Aug 26th) only, the Showbox is offering a 2-for-1 discount for TV ON THE RADIO! That comes to $11.50 a ticket… then you add in TicketBastard’s “fuck you” charges and well, I guess you’re looking at full priced tickets again. At least you don’t have to drive down to the Showbox box office to get them. Just click on this ticket link and enter the password “dearscience” to get a pair of tickets for half er, full price.
Or.. you could just drive down to the Showbox, grab your tickets at the box office there and enjoy the Green Room’s Happy Hour Specials. $2 domestic bottles, $3 micorbrews and draft beers, $3 well drinks, $1 off appetizers. Yeah, do that. Screw TicketBastard. They friggen suck a mule.
Janelle Monae had me before she even belted out a single note. Her costume, her hair, her demeanor, everything about here was stunning. An amazing talent. A little ball of energy…and then out came that VOICE. Holy Jeebus.
Her first 2 songs, which blend seamlessly into one another, are truly something to witness live. (They are good on the cd, but really don’t compare to the mellower tracks on the second half, where she gets to show off her range.) I saw her Friday night in Portland, OR at the Doug Fir Lounge. She rushes out onstage in full doo-wop Motown regalia, with pompadour hair and black and white saddle shoes, like a football team out of the tunnel. Her backup band is also dressed to the nines in what can only be described as: the Temptations meet Outkast. She dances, two steps and hits every note so perfectly that I was just blown away with in the first 2 minutes. The audience couldn’t help but clap and dance along with her. If that wasn’t enough she proceed to come down into the crowd and dance like there was no tomorrow, and even muster up a crowd surf in that intimate venue. WOW. I am sprung.
Then she blessed the crowd with an absolutely amazing ballad entitled ‘Smile.’ With the guitar as her only backing track, Janelle let out one of the most inpressive vocal displays I’ve heard in a long time and came with such emotion you couldn’t help but get goosebumps. What a talent she is. It’s kinda ridiculous. After that the audience was mesmerized, and she closed with my personal favorite song, Sincerely Jane. A very soulful song, with a destinct motown feel, about misguided youth. Again, the vibe she gives out when performing isn’t something you see everyday. The whole crowd was in the palm of her hand.
Monae has been in the music biz for a while getting guestspots and it paid off when she landed a record deal through her Wondaland Arts Society label. She came up in Atlanda and worked with Outkast on their ‘Idlewild’ album and Big Boi’s ‘Got Purp Vol. 1′ collective. You can see these influences right off the bat. Ms. Monae is essentially a female version of “3 Stacks” himself, Andre 3000. Very original style and infectious personality all wrapped up neatly in an aura of unlimited talent. She is currently signed to Bad Boy and the album was executive produced by Diddy himself. Props to the Did-ster for letting her personality shine thorugh on the record and not forcing her into the poppy mold.
Here is a video of Janelle Monae performing Sincerely Jane.
Her cd ‘Metropolis’ is available in stores and she will be back in Seattle in October. DO NOT MISS IT.
Went and saw The Liars Club Saturday night at The Bit Saloon. Perfect place to see them. Seemed like their kind of crowd.
Interesting night all around…Monty Python references abounded–from the ‘Spam’ door stamp, to the “I Fart in Your General Direction” t-shirt the bartender wore. Didn’t help that my buddy and I had just randomly seen the Spam sketch prior to heading out that night. Was it predisposition or preordained?–I’ll never tell.
I must admit, I didn’t catch much more than peripheral audio from opening band, Pablo Trucker–not an indictment of their music, it’s just that I happened to be playing the world’s longest game of “Elvira” pinball ever. Won’t bore you with the details, but suffice to say The Bit’s table ain’t quite right.
I was pleasantly surprised by the unassuming Seeing Blind. They had energy, something very unique to offer, and even though their tunes weren’t really my thing the crowd seemed to be enjoying themselves. I mean they have a cellist, fer chrissakes! And her contributions were no gimmicky afterthought. Overall, quirky, skillful, arty stuff without putting on arty attitude. Check ‘em out if you like your rock infused with a bit of jazz and an odd quasi-mix of Throwing Muses, Jeff Buckley and Tori Amos. (Don’t blame them if the comparisons are off. Again, not my area of expertise).
Round about midnightish The Liars Club came on. Guitarist, Chris, had let me in on the prior night’s drama–Bassist, Alex, had either severely sprained and/or broken his left fretboard-fingering wrist. Thing was all swollen up and wrapped in a brace, but there he was–ingesting various suggested ‘pain-relievers’ and downing medicinal adult-libations. And at the volume The Liars Club played, I can honestly say I couldn’t tell if Alex was ‘on’ or ‘gone’. It was my first time seeing The Liars Club live, and I gotta say they did not disappoint. Sufficiently loud, sufficiently energetic (especially with newish drummer, Steve), and sufficiently polite (singer K.C praised a show-goer for his ‘metal-hair’). It’s true–dude was fully metal from the frizz halo around his Mustaine-do to the toes of his butt-rockin’ boots. The Liars Club weren’t dissin’ on him either–they were sincerely appreciative of his attendance and style. That about sums up their vibe that night. Happy to rock some faces, and makin’ the best of The Bit’s small space (K.C patrolled the crowd like a death-spiraling fish in a tank). I’ll give ‘em a Bronze, with most of the minus being a technical deduction for the apparent physical handicap. Nevertheless, they medal (or should I say ‘metal’)–and I’m pretty sure next time I see them they’ll stand taller on the podium. (and there will be a next time).
If there’s anyone out there who hasn’t heard The Liars Club’s latest efforts, I’d advise you to have a listen. Feel free to download the entire EP with the last link.
Wide Open Beaver
Born on a Friday
Download Entire Liars Club EP
Don’t you just love it when you see some bands you know absolutely nothing about and you wind up having a great time?
I was excited to see Blackalicious and Sound Tribe Sector 9 at Marymoor Park only because it was a beautiful day and listening to music outside sounded downright nifty! At the time I knew nothing about either band, but if I didn’t enjoy the music, well, at least I would be outside. I can’t tell you how bummed I was to find out the show had been cancelled at Marymoor at moved to The Showbox. I have nothing against the Showbox, I think it’s one of the best venues on the West Coast, but dang it, I wanted to be outside! I was half hoping my friend would call to inform me that she had sold the tickets and we wouldn’t be going, the idea of sweating in the Showbox just didn’t sound all that appealing, especially since I knew nothing about the two bands. Also, I’ve never gone out of my way to see hip-hop shows, but I figured if there was an opportunity to see some new music, what the hell.
We got there a bit early and were able to score some chairs and a table, so at least we wouldn’t be crammed against the 18 and over crowd on the floor. We just hung out and talked while the DJ & bass player duo Conspirator warmed the crowd up with some tunes and riffs. As with most shows, the crowd was fairly sparse at the beginning, but the floor quickly filled up when the first set finished.
The cool thing about Blackalicious was how they built their set around a steady escalation of rhythm and rhymes. Front man Gift of Gab took the stage almost as he if he was in a Suge Knight look alike contest, but the irony was completely forgotten as he treated the crowd to a rhyme that sounded like a car accelerating from 5mph all the way to 100mph in about 4 minutes! DJ Chief of Xcel handled the background just as he should have, and kept the crowd moving for the entire 50 minute set. It was good to see a group perform progressive songs with politically charged lyrics, the only regret I have is that I couldn’t really understand them, as he raps with the speed of that guy from the old Micro Machines commercials. Oh well, how else to you keep a crowd moving?
My friend told me that she bought tickets for Blackalicious, so I didn’t even know that STS9 was even going to be there, let alone headline. It’s been a while since I’ve seen a purely instrumental group, so seeing these guys was a real treat. They kept the crowd pleased through their groove-jam style of performance that didn’t really involve hypnotic trance techniques. Heavy on the rhythm with every instrument given it’s due. It was also really cool to see a jam band where they don’t just stay planted on one spot playing their instruments, which made it easy to get into.
I’m always pleased when I find new bands to listen to, although I still think it would have been cooler to groove to these guys underneath the stars instead of the plasterboard ceiling of The Showbox. I’m going to check out iTunes and sample some of the tracks of these two bands; I just may want to listen to them when I go running!