Do you know Tex Rambunctious? If you don’t, then you’re probably a low-life scum suckin’ pile of horseshit! At least, that’s what Tex would say. Tex is the alter-ego of local music promoter/manager Dean Shortland, and he’s put together a one-two punch lineup of free shows leading up to this weekend’s Next BIG Nashville Music Festival/Conference. It’s called TEX Big Nashville, and the lineup is full of great bands who were flirted with by NBN but ultimately dumped for sexier bands/artists. My own band POWERBRRRD (Seth decided to make us a twitter, so follow us!) is among them. We are on tonight’s lineup at Mercy Lounge, which is an 8 off 8th-style lineup consisting of us, Del Barber, Chris Pickering, Jacob Thomas, Shotgun Lover, The Weeks, and maybe Jeremy Lister. As always, it’s FREE and starts at 9pm.

Tomorrow night’s TBN lineup is at Exit/In and features Codaphonic, My Tyger, The Black Shades, Reno Bo, and Bravo Max. Again, it’s FREE and will start at 9pm.

These are all great bands who, by any normal standard are certainly good enough to play NBN, but probably either a) haven’t been around long enough/produced enough recorded material, or b) don’t have any label/management affiliations/connections. So please do come out and checkout at least one night of bands before you booze it up on free drinks and sponsorships this weekend. Stay tuned in the next day or two as I have some pretty exciting news to unveil about exclusive NBN happenings on friday.

A few more random tidbits of interest:

In other NBN-related news, the Fader is co-sponsoring the WAVVES/Tennis/Christmas Island/Diarrhea Planet/Girls in the Eighties showcase on Friday night at Exit/In. They blogged about it. Which is pretty awesome.

Spin magazine also showed Nashville some love in a post about 5 new Nashville bands they ❤. Kind of an odd mix but mad props to PUJOL, The Ettes, and Turbo Fruits for making the list.

Didn’t get a chance to blog about this last night but Nashville’s own video journalist Crystal Heidemann of YouTell Concerts got made fun of on Hipster Runoff. As I told her, she should only feel honored.

My bandmate and friend Seth Graves has entered the 48 Hour Film Project for several years in a row. This year was no different, but unfortunately he was unable to get it in before the 48 hour deadline. He did turn it in though, and it will still be screened and is eligible for the crowd popularity vote. It just can’t win the festival officially. Behold THE CRUCICHIX:

I thought I was going crazy for a while, but then A-Trak posted this blog last Thursday confirming that I’m not crazy. His project with Armand Van Helden Duck Sauce released their first single “aNYway” a few months ago basically everywhere but the US. A 128 kb version was relatively easy to find on some blogs, but the full-quality official version wasn’t available in the US… until now. Trizzy acknowledges this travesty in his comments, but I sincerely hope this doesn’t happen for future releases. Go grab this amazing track on beatport now!

The vinyl version of Uncle Skeleton’s new full-length Warm Under the Covers is now officially available via YK records. Go grab it at the Uncle Skeleton bandcamp, or just get the digital version for however much you want to pay. (Via Yewknee)

So as you well know from my last post, I went to Bonnaroo. I had an artist pass, and even though that grants one a much better experience than a regular patron (access to cleaner showers, a couple of air-conditioned tents, and free booze backstage), it was still FUCKING HOT. Aside from the heat, my mind was blown by two performances in particular: Daryl Hall + Chromeo and LCD Soundsystem.

Daryl Hall and Chromeo are the perfect match of old and new stylistically. Daryl Hall had a huge fan blowing his snowy mane into an utterly God-like immensity, P-Thugg’s vocoder leads were spot-on, and the overall silky smoothness of the affair was beyond words. I was there with Drew Mischke from Mercy Lounge and Jon Burr of How I Became the Bomb (and a few others), and if you know anything about either of those individuals, you can imagine how giddy they both were at this spectacle. It was kind of endearing.

LCD Soundsystem was about an hour after the above show, and having not seen them before, a 2:30am set complete with the largest and brightest disco ball I’ve ever seen was enough to blow my mind yet again. I watched most of the set from sidestage, but the sound was good enough that I could sense how awesomely tight James Murphy’s backing band is. I was literally running on fumes by that point, but the energy of their performance kept me going right till the end.

I also learned more than I ever wanted to know about bros and the phenomenon of getting ICED and/or ICING someone else.

That’s really all I have to say, and if you haven’t checked out the numerous blog posts (most of which are a bit belated thanks to the press wi-fi meltdown that occurred) from the Nashville Cream, please do so for further, more in-depth coverage and some great photos by Lance Conzett and Eric England.

*This will be my last post this week, and today will be my last day of web presence until after Bonnaroo.*

As I’ve said before, I’m going to Bonnaroo this year. I’m not going the way I’ve gone the past 2 years, however, as the Scene/SouthComm is sending their staff photographers to cover it this year, obviously the result of a rough economy/tight budget. (They are full-time staff photographers, so in the end SouthComm isn’t having to pay them anymore than they would have already, whereas my work would be an extra expense to them since I’m freelance.) Let me say that I’m in no way irked at them for doing this, as they have to do what makes financial sense in these times especially, and if I were in their shoes, I’d probably do the same. Since they weren’t sending me, I had to work a little harder to acquire a pass, but I did. So, don’t expect any photos from me this year, as I won’t be able to get into the photo pits, and honestly don’t want to have to lug the expensive/heavy equipment around and keep up with it unless I have to. My only real goal is to see LCD Soundsystem, since this is expected to be their last year of live shows, ever.

I’ve heard a lot of ridiculous rumors that there’s going to be a monsoon in Manchester this year. THIS IS BALONEY. The weather forecast looks exactly like every other June forecast in TN has since the beginning of time. It’s going to be hot, humid, and there’s a slight chance (20-30%) of scattered showers and storms in the afternoon. I’d say there will be at least 1 or 2 of those showers/storms that happen across Bonnaroo, but it will by no means equate to a monsoon. The cause of this rumor is probably the fact that most weather apps and “forecast-at-a-glance” sources don’t include the probability of precipitation (PoP). They just show a small icon that has the sun covered partially by a storm cloud, a few rain drops, and a lightning bolt. It still shows that icon, even if the PoP is only 10%. This is a problem in my opinion, because sadly the vast majority of people will probably look at those icons on each day and think that it means it’s going to rain all day, everyday. So if you’re going this year, of course be prepared for rain and mud- it’s going to rain at some point, but it’s not going to rain the whole time. Remember to drink plenty of water and you’ll be fine.

I must also point you to Nashvillest’s 2nd (I think) annual CMA Bingo card. With the “CMApocalypse” quickly approaching, this little bit of local humor/snark is all but necessary to keep your sanity if you’re a Nashvillian who hates this annual gathering of:

AND

Have a great rest of the week/Bonnaroo if you’re going, and I will see you here sometime next week.

Those Darlins at Bonnaroo 2009

In case you haven’t paid any attention to the interwebs the past day or two, the Bonnaroo schedule is now up. Check it out and make your own customized schedule. The Road to Bonnaroo winners are mostly on the Troo Music Lounge stage (where they were last year) except for How I Became the Bomb, who are playing at Cafe Where?. I’m unfamiliar with this… venue… as I never went there in my past 2 years of covering Bonnaroo. It’s a little lame that HIBTB, Non Comms, and Space Capone are all 3 on Sunday, while Caitlin Rose is on Thursday, but whatevs.

Tonight boasts a pretty good offering of good shows in Nashville. There’s the all-ages Nobunny/Pujol show at Third Man Records, but get there early- shit starts at 6pm. Then there’s Tristen/The Goldroom/Hammertorch/Hands Down Eugene at The End. The thing I’m most looking forward to tonight, however, is the new monthly (I think) party called JR/SR at the multi-purpose/art space Open Lot. It’s being organized by some of the same folks who brought you the La Paz dance parties a few months back. After the La Paz owners were assholes to said people, I suggested Open Lot as a possible venue for future parties/shows/etc… after reading about it in The Rabbit. Looks like it worked out, as tonight’s party boasts a killer lineup of DJs- Justin Kase, Potamus, and Secret Name, as well as full sets from Majestico and Fly Golden Eagle. Check out the facebook event page for more details.

Saturday’s show offerings look good as well- the biggest being the Those Darlins/Natural Child/Pujol/So Jazzy show at Mercy Lounge. Nikki Darlin recently took a spill and broke her arm after a show due to a dangerous combination of booze, cowboy boots, and a grassy field. Being a traveling musician/performer, she of course has no health insurance and thus faces overwhelming medical expenses, thus this show will feature some notable other local musicians filling in for her on banjolele. I’m assuming she’ll still be able to sing. The money from the show will go towards her medical expenses. Then there’s the Kelly Kerr & the Distractions album release show at FooBar… I wrote up a little review of his album last week.

The party doesn’t stop there, as local publicity stunt-whiz Brandon Jazz of the Armed Forces will be following the Westboro Baptist Church assholes around on their mini-tour of Nashville churches sunday morning, playing his song “Radical Luv” over and over in hopes of drowning them out.  If I can force myself out of bed early enough Sunday morning I’ll be with them taking some pics. Read more about it at Nashville Cream.

I also find it hilarious that every music blog has been all “OMG!!! 20 SECONDS OF THE NEW ARCADE FIRE ALBUM!!! AAAHHHEEEEE!!!”

Have a great weekend!

Weekend shows & weather

April 23, 2010

This weekend is actually pretty good in terms of live music in Nashville. Here’s what’s on my radar:

The biggest story tonight and tomorrow is probably Rites of Spring at Vanderbilt, featuring the awesome one-two punch of Phoenix and Passion Pit. The full lineup is at the RoS website, but the only bands I’m even remotely interested in seeing are those two, and maybe Two Door Cinema Club. I will be there taking pics for the Scene as usual.

Friday: If outdoors festivals aren’t your thing, Chicken Ranch Records out of Austin, TX is doing a badass showcase at the Basement featuring The Clutters, We Were The States, Tiger Tiger, and Jimmy Duke & the Riot.

Saturday: If outdoor festivals aren’t your thing and afterparties are, you’ll want to head to 12th & Porter where the weekly Y2K DJs Coach and Hands off Sam will be joined by none other than members of Passion Pit, who will have (or not, depending on the weather) played Rites of Spring earlier that evening. DJ Potamus is also on the bill. I’ve heard nothing but good things about Passion Pit’s DJ sets- they did at least a few of them at SXSW this year.

Sunday: Peelander-Z w/ Tim Chad and Sherry & The Man Power at Exit/In. I saw Peelander-Z there a couple years ago and it was a blast. The bass player was literally hanging upside-down from the balcony. Just be prepared for some major crowd participation if you go.

Another big story this weekend is the weather. As you can see from the NWS severe weather outlook to the right, we’re in the “moderate risk” category for severe storms on saturday. The current thinking is that some storms will beigin to roll in very late tonight, sometime between 11pm and 3am, and hopefully not drenching tonight’s Rites of Spring festivities. Then the real action will start up saturday morning and basically be a threat all day long, into the evening. This is not just a few storms with a little hail and some wind, there is also a good possibility of tornadoes, and that’s why I have a strong feeling much of saturday’s Rites activities will end up getting canceled altogether. I can only hope for their sake that the threat passes by the evening AND that no damage is done to the stage/equipment so that the headliners can at least still play.

Important weather things to remember for saturday: The Storm Prediction Center in Oklahoma issues severe weather watches. A watch is for a large area of land and means that conditions are favorable for severe weather to occur, but it is not an immediate threat. Our local National Weather Service office issues severe weather warnings. A warning is usually for a county or even just a city area and means that severe weather is actually occurring and will hit your area soon, so take cover. There’s always confusion on Vanderbilt’s campus regarding the on-campus vs. the downtown Nashville tornado sirens as well. Here’s how it works: the downtown Nashville siren goes off if there is a tornado warning issued for anywhere in Davidson County. The Vandy campus siren only goes off if a tornado warning is issued that specifically includes downtown Nashville. Thus, sometimes the downtown siren will go off and the Vandy campus one won’t (example: a warning issued for SE Davidson Co./LaVergne), and frankly it confuses the hell out of people on the Vandy campus. But that’s how it works.

Please be safe and heed all warnings this weekend!

If you’re a music fan at all you’d be silly not to attend some of the National Record Store Day events happening this weekend. Grimey’s, The Groove, Great Escape, and Third Man Records are all participating in some way. Grimey’s will be doing their usual outdoor record sale in their back parking lot, accompanied by a lineup of several great live acts. The Groove will host a sale and in-store performances, one of which is the amazing Emylou Harris. Great Escape is having a sale, and Third Man Records will feature a performance by the “Racontwoers,” which is two members of the Raconteurs coming together to play some stripped-down version of their songs… which two I don’t know. For a more detailed rundown of what’s going on, check out Nashvillest or the Scene. There are also tons of special releases from artists that support RSD, most of them 7″ vinyl. Check out the full list on the official RSD website. Over the last 3 years or so, this event has exploded. I remember just casually stopping by Grimey’s a few years ago, flipping through some records, hearing some bands, chillin’… but now it’s an ordeal that must be planned out because each store’s event will almost surely be packed-out, parking can be a pain, and you may not get to see the acts you want to unless you get there early. So if there’s an artist you absolutely must-see, you should get there at least an hour or so early.

Some other random tidbits I’ve come across:

Caitlin Rose was just confirmed for the End of the Road festival this Sept. in the UK. She also has a small UK tour scheduled for the spring/summer, and will be competing in the Road to Bonnaroo 8 off 8th this coming Monday at Mercy Lounge. (Via Hartley)

Natural Child got some blog love from Brooklyn Vegan. They’re playing a few shows in NYC this weekend, which is part of a bigger tour they’re currently on. They’ll also be hitting the road in June with labelmates JEFF the Brotherhood. You can also snag their track “Dogbite” from the post.

Makeup & Vanity Set released a new track called “Night Visions” to the masses via Bandcamp earlier this week. All you gotta do is give him your email address. I promise he won’t do anything bad with it.

I’ll leave you with this very…. homo-erotic… cover art from the new Scissor Sisters album Night Work, which comes out 6/29. Seriously though, would expect anything less from the Scissor Sisters?

Have a great weekend!

After some thinking, I have this to say about the Bonnaroo 2010 lineup: 1/2 good, 1/2 FAIL. Part of it is just my personal taste, but part of it is just plain WTF?

First the bad part: the headliners. The combination of Stevie Wonder, Jay-Z, Kings of Leon, and Dave Matthews Band (the 1st 4 listed in the lineup, thus assumed to be headliners) is pretty weak compared to Phish/Springsteen, or Metallica/Pearl Jam, or The Police/Tool. As much as I hate Phish, they were a HUGE score for the festival last year, and IMO, they needed someone like the widely-rumored Paul Simon or Paul McCartney to really stand up the last few years. I don’t think Jay-Z, despite his legendary status in the hip hop world, can quite fill the shoes of past headliners. Stevie Wonder is awesome and I’m glad he’s playing but somehow I just don’t see him as quite headliner material. DMB has played Bonnaroo before, and of course will please the hippie crowd, but will also draw a considerable number of collar-poppin’ fratastic douchebags.

Now for the good part: the tent-playing (or maybe Which Stage-playing) mid-level indie acts. I’m more than elated to see She & Him, LCD Soundsystem, Phoenix, Flaming Lips, Miike Snow, They Might Be Giants, OK Go, The Melvins, Neon Indian, and many more of the “indie rock” acts on the bill. Let’s just say that if I go to cover it for the Scene again this year, I will no doubt be spending most of my time in the tents.

In other lineup news, Vanderbilt’s Rites of Spring lineup came right on the heels of the Bonnaroo announcements, and the list is not surprising, though Phoenix and Passion Pit together make the lineup a tad bit stronger than past years, IMO. Headliners Ben Harper & the Relentless 7 and Drake fit right into the typical RoS formula of putting an up-and-coming rap star on one night, and a frat-pleasing, jam-ish act on the other. But this broad, please-all formula has worked well for the festival in the past, so I can’t blame them for doing what works. This ain’t no Pitchfork afterall.

As most Nasvhillians who pay any amount of attention to the local electronic/DJ scene already know, Justin Kase has been on the road for several months as a the DJ in Ke$ha’s backing band. He also ran a pretty cool, though sparingly updated blog called Blogging Is Serious Business. Sadly, though, he’s putting that blog on indefinite hiatus:

Touring kept me from updating recently, but now i just don’t have any interest to continue this blog. Never say never, but don’t expect anything new for some time to come.

What’s utterly flattering, though, is that he mentioned my blog, along with the obvious Nashville Nights, as an alternative for “your Nashville dancing fix…” Therefore, expect me to attempt to live up to that plug by bringing in a little more coverage of the DJ/electronic/dance scene beside my usual plugs for gigs at which I’m DJing. Don’t expect many mp3’s though, because A) Joseph at Nashville Nights has that very well-covered, and B) I don’t have the time or energy to devote to climbing the HypeMachine charts and getting labels/producers to send me shit to post. I will however, post a link to my last mix, just in case you missed it back in Dec. (Spring 2010 Mixxxx is currently in production for release next month.)

DJ Burgers-Winter 09 MIXXXX

Finally, I was excited to this nicely-done video of the Morning Benders performing/recording the track “Excuses” for Yours Truly with about 50 of their best musician friends crammed into the studio, Phil Spector-style. In fact, as the singer Chris Chu talks about in the interview segment, the song is a bit of a tribute to Spector and his “Wall of Sound” recording method. They even wrote a cute little letter to him which you can read at Yours Truly. Here’s the video. (All of this via Gorilla vs. Bear and Pitchfork)

Some cool/cute videos

February 9, 2010

You’re no doubt going to be spending a lot of your internet time today following the “great unveiling” of the Bonnaroo 2010 lineup, and I have little interest in competing with that. Furthermore, I don’t have time to cover such a long, drawn-out process in the first place because this blog happens during small breaks, luls, and at lunch during my “real” job. According to the main Bonnaroo website, the place to keep up with the lineup unveiling (which is entirely up to the artists themselves this year) is Bonnaroo’s myspace page. They will start keeping tabs of the announcements at noon EST today. As of 10am the only artists I’ve seen are Weezer, Flaming Lips, Phoenix (weird because Bonnaroo doesn’t normally book acts 2 years in a row), John Fogerty, Jeff Beck, and Blues Traveler. That last one gave me a major flashback to watching Woodstock ’94 coverage when I was 13….

So, instead of focusing on the Bonnaroo craziness, I will simply post some interesting cute videos thanks to Yewknee’d:

Very cool time-lapse video of the snowfall in Washington, D.C. this past weekend:

A dog reacting to the Law & Order theme song: (Many many more here.)

Credit: John Behm via Private Dancer's myspace

Last friday night at the 5 Spot was the first Apollo Up! show in many years, and I showed up ready for some serious mid-aughts nostalgia. My enthusiasm was somewhat stifled by the first band which had a name too long to remember and sounded like Warped Tour circa 1999. Thank goodness Minneapolis’ Private Dancer was up next. As I enthusiastically told the band after their show, it’s been a LONG-ASS time since I’ve seen a band that I knew nothing about and was totally amazed. Try as I might, I find it very hard to describe exactly why I liked them so much… I just did. It’s true, their overall sound is pretty similar to a lot of garage-y 60’s and 70’s revivalists currently flooding the market, but something about them just really clicked with me. I strongly suggest checking them out. No, seriously… CHECK THESE GUYS OUT. To whet your appetite, here’s She’s A Company Man from their debut album Trouble Eyes.

Private Dancer-She’s A Company Man

Of course, Apollo Up! was awesome and Jay Leo Phillips’ guitar tone peeled my scalp as always. For a better review of the show, check out the Cream.

Some sad news came from Stereogum and Pitchfork today. Flight of the Conchords is officially dead. There will be no 3rd season. I’m quite sure we haven’t seen the last of Jemaine and Brett, however, and I look forward to seeing what they do next.

Lilith Fair is making a comeback next year and the lineup is rather interesting. It includes a few names that seem a little out-of-place at first glance: the Submarines, Metric, Janell Monae, Chairlift and Ke$ha…. yes, Ke$ha- the Nashville-L.A. transplant who has our own Justin Kase as her DJ. (Via Music Photographers forum)