Seattle Subsonic - February, 2011
Local band Out Like Pluto rented the Jewelbox Theater for an evening and has put together a bill of three Seattle based female-fronted bands. I’ve never seen Out Like Pluto but from their website I have listened to a few tunes and have a particular liking for “Are We There Yet?” (free download available) and “Papercut”, good, fun stuff.
I went to Club Motor Friday night to catch a band with a name I like, Death’s Three Daughters. It’s an all girl band that describes themselves as playing Gutter Rock so I thought it could be interesting, and as long as I can remember I’ve had a thing for female bass players, well, except for D’Arcy from the Smashing Pumpkins. I loved the Pumpkins’ early stuff of course, Gish and Siamese Dream, and there were some good bass lines therein, but D’Arcy never did it for me, not even the time I saw them open for the Red Hot Chili Peppers in Detroit way back in 1991. I’d never before been to Club Motor but was pleasantly surprised by the Woman with Purple Hair who took my money and smiled and told me to enjoy the show. I thought I might just have to see if she’d be interested in a drink before the end of the evening. The bar was separated from the main area by a waist level wall topped with chicken wire running up to the ceiling, yes, chicken wire. Seemed right out of The Blues Brothers. I walked to it.
I laughed at the thought of Jim Belushi and Dan Akroyd and got a seat at the bar. I settled, ordered a beer from the Purple Haired Woman who was suddenly serving drinks, and got to reading Patti Smith’s Just Kids as I waited for D3D to go on. The book is one that draws the reader in and then slams them with a phrase that stops everything, the kind of phrase that makes the reader look about the room and take a swig of beer and shout, “Hell yeah!” I came across one such phrase there in Club Motor. While writing about the kind of doubts an artist can have of their talent, about the pursuit of art seeming at times great folly, about there being so much art but so much of it ordinary, Smith wrote, “It seemed indulgent to add to the glut unless one offered illumination.” Right on.
Around 9:30, Death’s Three Daughters stepped up to the stage and checked tuning and levels. Then they crashed a few big staccato chords and jumped right into the first song. There was energy Read the rest of this entry »
Local electroravers Beat Connection have a new video. It is below.
The song is the oft-remixed “Silver Screen” from their forthcoming record to be released on UK label Tender Age (affiliated with Moshi Moshi). I believe it’ll closely resemble—if not mirror—the Surf Noir EP the duo put up for free last summer on Bandcamp, easily earning itself amongst the best NW records I heard in 2010. Releasing a dance album on a UK label is a big deal, moreso than here in the states. Congrats to these guys.
I’m particularly fond of the classic Northwest forest setting and the smeared kaleidoscopic affect, but what’s up with the jackets? No green and gold for the late SuperSonics? C’mon, dudes, REPRESENT.
This Friday and Saturday the CCT is hosting two of the best local CD Releases and we’ve got free tickets to get you there!
First on Friday, Feb 25, is a not to be missed c.d. release show at The Columbia City Theater, celebrating Kelli Schaefer’s new album Ghost of the Beast
February 25 – 9pm / $8 / Get tickets here
For a chance to win 2 guest list spots, email us HERE with your name and KELLI in the title
Winner will be picked at random and notified on Friday morning
Next Up: Local synth pop soaked outfit Hotels new album On the Casino Floor will be released this Saturday, Feb 26, at the Columbia City theater, along with up and coming touring band The Devil Whale from Salt Lake City, and 80’s dance rock influenced, The Royal Bear.
w/ DJ Marco Collins
9pm / $10 adv – $12 day of /
Get tickets here!
For your chance to win a pair of guest-list spots for the Hotels show, just email us here with HOTELS in the title.
Winner will be drawn at random and notified Friday afternoon.
This Friday make no other plans. You will want to be down at Columbia City Theater for Kelli Schaefer. She will be releasing her debut full length record (on a 12″ limited edition white vinyl) “ Ghost of A Beast”. Also available at the release show is a white and pink splattered vinyl record for just a few extra bucks. Its totally worth the few extra, as it’s a beautiful piece of vinyl.
If you have never hear Kelli check out the video below. She is one hell of a singer, her song’s will send chills down you, and for some bring a tear to your eye. Her song’s are so deeply personal and touching, add in the fact that she singing at the top of her lungs and playing an electric guitar and you have one hell of a female lead. This will be the best show of the weekend. Joining her for the night will be Joseph Giant, and Ships.
Tickets are still available, but its sure to sell out! get them while you can. They are only 8 bucks!
Friday Feb 25th 9pm
I sit down and play a few bars of Pink Floyd’s “Money” on the acoustic, the bass line really, accented with a few bar chords when I want a little more umph. I sing a few verses and go into the solo where I groove on the chords rather than the solo itself. Alone in my apartment, the volume is filling, and I go into the third verse and out to end the song. It leaves me in a good mood, a mood to hear more acoustic music from people who can sing better then I can. My playing is good enough, but I’m still working on that singing bit, and in the moment, I want a beer and a better voice so I head to the Skylark Cafe for a showcase of singer/songwriters. There’s the mild threat of a snowstorm in Seattle tonight, but sometimes music is more important than safety … OK, all the time. And anyway, I always like the possibility of the undiscovered, the new find.
I get there, and Gina Belliveau is already on the stage, the second of four acts. I make mental apologies to the first guy, but I’d had a few tunes to play on my own and that took precedence. I find a seat at the bar, boot the laptop, and order a Manny’s Pale Ale. Gina finishes her song which had been a quiet non-descript number and then says of the next one, “This is about my crazy neighbor and also about being an introvert.” Interesting how many introverts will get up on stage. I know that feeling, introversion. I write enough, all the time really. I play music too, but I’m not the talker, don’t care to be. Get me in a crowd and I’ll just be, people watch, people listen.
I listen thus to Ms. Belliveau. She plays with her fingers rather than a pick, and is better for it. She strums and plucks notes with her nails, sweeps the strings in bold moments and lightly dances fingers across the neck in the mellow parts. I like it. Read the rest of this entry »
Local synth pop soaked outfit Hotels new album On the Casino Floor will be released this Saturday at the Columbia City theater, along with up and coming touring band The Devil Whale from Salt Lake City, and 80′s dance rock influenced, The Royal Bear.
w/ DJ Marco Collins
9pm / $10 adv – $12 day of /
Get tickets here!
A not to be missed c.d. release show at The Columbia City Theater this Friday, celebrating Kelli Schaefer’s new album Ghost of the Beast
February 25 – 9pm / $8 /
Dudes, ladies and lovers of structureless synthonica (*coined it*), digital wizardry, Portland and pizza: I must confess I’ve been spending a LAAARGE amount of time the past month with one White Rainbow, aka Dr. Pizza, aka Adam Forkner, aka one of the most ingenious electronic producers in our PacNW region. You might recall from last winter my highlighting of WR’s much sought after, out-of-print box set. Still haven’t made it all the way through that buzzing behemoth. More recently, Forkner put together some unreleased tracks collecting digital dust in his hard drive, titled Gnarchives Volume 1, causing laptop nerds everywhere to lose their collective breath.
But, more interestingly, he’s also composed a 3-track album (the meaning of that word is wide open these days, people) that is much more of a “new frontier” for the prolific music maker. Lays The Boogie Down takes everything you know about WR and spins it for the dance fools. The title track is a preposterous 17 minutes long with a hard clap backbone, synthetic horns, scuzzy guitars, and a real future funk kind of feeling. Hey, if you can listen to four reg’lar songs in a row, you can easily ingest 17 minutes of this awesomely improvised dancetronica. The other two tracks are great as well (but, admittedly, play second fiddle to “…Lays The Boogie Down”). His bandcamp is pretty much a “name your price” kinda deal, but I suggest kicking the dude 5 bones or more for his troubles. Sample it, at least, here:
I can’t help but surmise that this new boogie in his step has been catalyzed through his recent collaboration with R&B singer Justin Johnson, aka JGreen. The duo is going by the name Purple & Green and has a decidedly funky bent to Forkner’s usual seamless songscapes. To Wit:
“Purple N Green is the new Portland Experimental Digital Funky project from: J GREEN aka Justin Leon Johnson – vocals; Adam Forkner (White Rainbow, Rob Walmart, We Like Cats, etc) – production and synth solos”
Ok, sorry, not that descriptive, but if you hit the blog, they got all sorts of tracks up on Soundcloud. Or you can check out a pretty nice vid from their show at the tiny Cairo shop/gallery over on East Mercer Street a few weeks back. Props to whomever captured it:
I know Shabazz Palaces was the headliner for last Thursday’s smokescreen of a show, but methinks Palaceer Lazaro took advantage of the opportunity to showcase his current favorite band, THEESatisfaction. It was an odd and entertaining show that used an “unusual” formula from the well-worn structure of a traditional music concert (opening band-break-other band-break-headliner). Right from the beginning, you knew something fresh was gonna go down.
Ish Butler, Shabazz’s creator/Palaceer Lazaro, was introduced amidst laser lights and ominous voice modulation by his drum man Tendai Maraire as “Lonnie Michaels, the Cadillac of Human Beings” (amongst other dubious accolades, of course). Butler popped out on stage with an endlessly bright smile, a throwback pseudo-flat top, and a fat gold chain reminiscent of early 90s Cali rappers. Oh, and he was shirtless, underneath his brown Member’s Only (please, see photo above). I must say, dude looks good. But who was this Lonnie Michaels? Turns out he’s an effusive, albeit evasive, hip hop chat show host blessed with a chest and a regal high-backed wicker chair. The ladies of THEESatisfaction were his first guests and the cool-as-all-fuck duo gave little in the way of answers to Lonnie’s bold line of questioning: “Can you describe what space-jazz-rap is?” “Hmmm, no.”
Then some Shabazz Palaces music was played in the dark, behind gobs of smoke. Then some THEESatisfaction songs bumped the house, as Cat and Stasia (first names only) tip toed the edge of the stage, wooed the crowd and performed their séance shuffle as Maraire and Butler carried the deep, heavy beats behind them. This process repeated itself several times over throughout the show, stopping for a few more segments of The Lonnie Michaels Show. Both groups were tight, but the ladies did the crowd especially right this night.
The Gunshot Girls (name’s probably wrong; the dance moves were not) got some face time with the man. Later came the comical “Ask A Rapper” segment. One nerd asked why Seattle hip hop ain’t gettin’ no national love. “It is!” replied Butler. “But we gotta just worry about our own thing (I’m paraphrasing).” As usual, he was right. Another nerd asked when the new Shabazz Palaces record—for Sub Pop—is due. Sometime this May, he told us. One lusty woman, after complimenting Cat and Stasia’s far out look, asked Butler to take his jacket off. He blushingly demurred. Another (there were a lot) question asked where he got his beats from; I can’t remember his specific answer, but it was some sort of cool, esoteric response. He then posed the question to Chocolate Chuck, local producer and younger brother of THEESat’s Catherine Harris-White who was in the audience, to which he hilariously replied, “Safeway.” My favorite question was near the end, however, when someone worked up the nerve and cleverness to ask Butler why he decided to pluralize “Palaces”. He took a step back and laughed; I laughed along with him. “I guess I just like S’s” he said through a smile. “I had Shabazz Palace, but it just looked like it needed another S on the end.”
Later on, Sub Pop president Megan Jasper took a seat on the interview couch, and—here’s where the showcasing comes in—saw first hand a Shabazz/THEESatisfaction “demo” collaboration. Jasper’s label is considering signing the quirky queers to a record deal and Butler would like nothing more than to have his BFFs as labelmates. Other new songs? Yes, there were a few of them. Were they good? Yes, yes they were.