First of all, I was very happy to hear that Nashville’s own Arnold Myint, head chef and owner of P.M., Cha Cha, and Suzy Wong’s House of Yum, has made it to the next season of Top Chef, which will begin airing on Bravo on June 16th. More info on that at the Tennessean. (Via Nashvillest twitter)

Now for what to do this weekend:

Friday there’s a helluva one-two punch at the Cannery/Mercy Lounge. Sharon Jones & the Dap Kings will be soulin’ it up downstairs while My So-Called Band will be igniting your 90’s nostalgia upstairs. I’ll be shooting the Sharon Jones show, then DJing some 90’s jock jams after MSCB. So please do head over to Mercy and keep on dancin’ after the show.

Saturday is all about the rockabilly as Th’ Legendary Shack Shakers, Pine Hill Haints, and The Clutters invade Mercy Lounge.

This Nashvillest post also has several flood benefits going on this weekend. Be sure to check one of those out.

I’ll go ahead and mention that this coming Monday is the final installment of the Road to Bonnaroo series, featuring Space Capone, My Tyger, Heartbeater, Deep Fried Five, And The Relatives, Delta Saints, Pico Vs. Island Trees, and Cheer Up Charlie Daniels. This one should be interesting.

Also worthy of mention, the Nashville’s Dead kids did a pretty cool video interview segment with Pujol and friends, complete with guitar amps in the middle of the road… and lots of luv. Check it below:

Here we go: the first official artist interview on my little corner of the web. With his self-titled 3rd album coming out on March 16th and an album release show at the End March 14th, Makeup & Vanity Set made the perfect first interviewee.

SCLMS: Not get too cliche, but what piqued your interest in electronic music waaay back when?
MAVS: To be totally honest, it had a lot to do with the fact that I was just really into trying to figure out how to make the sounds. I can remember pretty vividly hearing songs back in the day as a young Putay, and just thinking ‘How do you make that?’ I really just wanted to find out how you could make music without the conventional methods of actual sounds and microphones. Electronic music was always this big mystery to me. Not a lot of people particularly cared about the genre where I grew up. It seemed sort of taboo. I guess in a way that also attracted me. It was different. I remember making super early jams with computers and putting them on tapes and handing them off to, like, my band teachers; they didn’t really have much to say about it. I think back then I was just excited about discovery.

SCLMS: When I first met you in college at MTSU, I remember you were making fairly experimental/unstructured/blippy/glitchy material, much like your current side project DAAS. Then suddenly Makeup & Vanity Set was born circa 2003, and I remember seeing you open for the Protomen at one of their 1st Boro shows and thinking “whoa! Pusti got all dance-tastic all of a sudden!” Then for several years you continued to push the more structured/dancey MAVS material, until last year when DAAS was born. What was going through your mind and what drove your transitions between styles between 2003 and now?
MAVS: The other day I was cleaning some stuff out of my house and I found the original piece of notebook paper from the class that I had with Cal where he drew the Protomen logo for the very first website we made. It all filled in with BIC ink pen. Like you can just picture him not paying any attention to class and just doodling this thing that ended up being a giant part of our lives for the next ten years. I basically started making New Order-y songs and recording bass guitar over them and sending them to Cal around that time. We were planning on recording some songs together. I would send him other stuff too. The other stuff wound up being Aesthetically Speaking. Cal wound up pretty much forcing me to open for them at the Boro because they needed another band to open and I think Cal was terrified of the selection of Boro bands at that point, so it was me. And I had never played a show by myself ever before that point. Makeup and Vanity Set, the name, was a joke about me not wanting to do it, really. The ski mask was me trying to haphazardly compete with the theatrics of the Protomen. The first ski mask belonged to my friend Norman Teale, who gave it to me before moving to Oakland. It seemed like an odd parting gift at the time.

SCLMS: What was your take on the success of Justice/the rise of bloghouse circa 2007? Because you were totally doing that shit way before they got famous with it.
MAVS: I think bloghouse is sorta mostly dead. I think it’s becoming a lot of other things. The best thing about bloghouse is that it literally reinvented the way that people get famous with electronic music. It allowed musicians to make jams faster, get them out faster, and operate in a much more compact way, which is awesome. At school, they used to always talk about how the rise of pro-level studio gear in people’s bedrooms is going to give rise to people making hit records with nothing. That’s a bunch of crap; no one is going to make Queen albums in their basement. It absolutely applies to electro music though. For the record, I used to compress the shit out of my songs simply because I didn’t know what I was doing and it made the drums sound tougher. That doesn’t really equate to Justice, but it does make really loud crazy 8 bit songs, almost ten years ago. For real.

SCLMS: People used to talk about how you made music in MS-DOS, by writing code. No visual interfaces, no linear sequencing, no keys to hit, just writing code to make a song. Is that totally true? If it is, can I eat some of your brain?
I used to get all wonky with Trackers back in the day. It’s not really code, but it is super nerdy. You would hit keys, but they were computer keys. It’s funny because a lot of the stuff that comes out now is so branched out of that. It’s not even funny.

SCLMS: What’s your take/philosophy on the live performance of electronic music?
MAVS: Playing live is interesting. It can be really painful. I’ve played shows where I’m pretty bored with it. It’s more technical than anything else, so after a few songs, if the crowd isn’t into it, you start feeling like you’re standing up there doing a power point presentation. I’ve always hated stages. I like being down on the floor with people. It feels better. I think I got really lucky by having a bunch of super awesome friends who would come to my shows and dance like crazy and fire strobe lights and smoke machines, and tear up baguettes with their shirts off, etc. My friends have made it so much easier to cope with.

SCLMS: What do you think of dubstep?
MAVS: I really hope it isn’t the next big deal. It’s been around for a while overseas, so it makes sense that all of the sudden it’s super big here, but I honestly get kinda bored with it. I remember as a kid, loaning my copy of Homework to a friend, who copied it to cassette in his bedroom while we were at school, and he came home to find out his Mom shut it off. He asked her why and she goes ‘Well, it was skipping.’ I think electronic music is moving into this super next level A.D.D. mode where the little motifs are getting shorter and the changes and craziness are getting faster and the whole thing is just pushing forward. When I want to hear something new, I usually just listen to whatever Oizo is doing.

SCLMS: Why do people like wobble bass? It basically sounds like a series of electronic farts most of the time, IMHO.
MAVS: I bet if it were called Fart Bass, people would like it less. Filters, man. People love filters. They just don’t know it.

SCLMS: What are your favorite style of jams to DJ?
Tough Jams.

So there you have it. Make sure to keep an eye on his official Bandcamp page to grab the new album, and if you’re in Nashville, you don’t want to miss the album release show at the End on March 14th with Magic Hammer, Anamanaguchi (NYC), Starscream, Sabrepulse, Henry Homesweet and a DJ set from our local beloved Penguin Parade (featuring 2 members of Left Can Dance). You can also buy a physical copy of the album at the release show. Meanwhile, here’s the track “Putay’s Back” to tide you over.

Makeup & Vanity Set-Putay’s Back

On a side note, it would be crazy to not mention that Devo has a new record coming out in May and they’ve released a free, legal mp3 of the song “Fresh” to the interwebs. Grab it at Nashville Nights! It actually kinda sounds like old-school Devo.

Combined science/music post today. Not much time….

A meteorite about the size of a fist crashed through the roof of a doctor’s office in Virginia on monday. Reports say that it was traveling about 220 MPH when it hit the roof. There’s a common misconception that all meteorites hit the ground as a fireball and cause a crater. The truth is only the really big ones, about car-size and up, actually have enough inertia to keep up those kinds of speeds all the way to the ground. The smaller ones that reach the ground have long since been slowed by the friction of the atmosphere, and usually hit at speeds anywhere from 100 to 300 mph, depending on the size and weight. I don’t want to spend much time on this so go here or here for more info.

Now for the music.

I mentioned a while back that beloved Nashville scrap-punkers Meemaw decided to end their hiatus. Well, the time has come! It all goes down tonight at The End, along with Marj!, So Jazzy, and JEFF the Brotherhood. I don’t really know if you can quite call it an interview, but please do check out this gem of a video segment of them talking/playing a new song/goofing off over at Nashville’s Dead. Good times.

Unfortunately this had to happen the same night as a ton of other good stuff in town.

One of the aforementioned other things is the special edition of Happy Valley at the Cannery Ballroom, where I will be running the Generation Domination photobooth. It’s part of Mercy Lounge’s 7-year anniversary party, but unlike the other show upstairs, it will cost a meager $5 to get into. The FREE show upstairs will consist of The Non-commissioned Officers, The Ettes, De Novo Dahl, Apollo Up, and the two secret guests have now been revealed- The Features and Turbo Fruits. That has to be the most amazing lineup of local rock I’ve seen in a long time.

On Saturday Mercy is once again the place to be, as the last day of their week of free shows consists of Space Capone, How I Became the Bomb, Heypenny, Madi Diaz, Tallest Trees, and Armed Forces. This amazing lineup will be followed by the return of BFF, featuring yours truly and Fan Fiction of Nashville Nights on the decks, and we promise to keep your butt on the dancefloor till the wee hours.

In case you missed the memo, BFF was a weekly dance party held by me (Burgers) and Joseph (Fan Fiction) at Mad Donna’s in east Nashville. That location turned out to be not quite right for what we were trying to do, so instead of keeping BFF as a monthly staple, we decided to just let it be the branding we use whenever/wherever we spin together. There are two upcoming BFF-related events, the first of which I just mentioned, and the other is Feb. 5th at La Paz. More details are in the pipeline about that, but I’ll say now that it’s probably going to be the official afterparty for the Features’/Cortney Tidwell/Majestico show which just a block away at Exit/In. It’s gonna be a blast y’all.

Have a great weekend!

You Ain’t No Picasso does a series of interviews called “My First Time With… (insert band name here).” His latest is with Murfreesboro/Nashville’s own Those Darlins. Check it out here. I was rather surprised to know that The Bang Up was Linwood’s first band… or that the first song he wrote was “Shoot that Girl”…. which was one of the best songs from his band the Turncoats. Actually there’s no way that’s the first song he wrote. Linwood, I’m callin’ bullshit on that one buddy. You don’t write a song that good your first time around. Besides, it’s not like this interview’s serious or anything….

Surprise surprise: The Black Lips got into a fight with WAVVES in Brooklyn. To be more specific, Jared Swilley was the one who actually got into it, but he denies the dude (Nathan) from WAVVES was even involved. I don’t understand why, but I’m eternally fascinated by the ridiculous situations those crazy Atlantans get themselves into…

For all the nerds out there, please check out this video of autotuned Carl Sagan clips/Stephen Hawking robot voices. I’m not sure if this is meant to be serious or not…

Remember when those crazy religious zealots disguised as “developers” wanted to build a Bible theme park in Rutherford County and failed? Then they tried to do the same thing in Wilson County and failed again? Well, a family in Rutherford Co. is suing the county for damages because they had a land deal with the developers, pending county approval. The county is ready for a fight, though, and declined a settlement offer to avoid hearings. I can’t see how the family will win this. The county had very good, completely legal reasoning for not approving the park. There was no wrongdoing involved! Via Nashvillest.

There’s a tornado watch today until 4pm, so be on the lookout. Since it’s a relatively hot topic lately, I thought I’d show you a little tidbit about how tornado warnings are issued. As you should know, warnings are only for counties or cities. They issue them when a tornado is indicated by either doppler radar or by a trained spotter, or both. Doppler radar has a unique ability to determine whether the precipitation it detects is moving toward or away from the radar site. Here’s an image from this morning from the NWS website showing the Storm-Relative Mean Radial Velocity. Don’t worry about what that means, but just know that red indicates precip moving away from the radar site, and green indicates precip moving toward it.

Click image to enlarge

Click image to enlarge

The brighter the color, the faster the wind speed. The area highlighted is what’s called a “couplet” and it shows bright red and green right next to each other, indicating rotation. This is what the NWS means when they say that doppler radar indicates a “storm capable of producing a tornado.” The couplet only means there’s large-scale rotation in the storm, not necessarily a twister on the ground. That’s where spotters like me come in. We are the eyes and ears that can actually confirm that a tornado is on the ground, thus enhancing the NWS’s ability to issue accurate and timely warmings. Sorry that ended up being a little longer than I expected…

Now for a taste of what’s going on this weekend…

Tonight I’m shooting pics of Flight of the Conchords at the Ryman. It’s sold out, so I’m very excited to be photographing/seeing them.

Saturday there are a few things going on, but I have no idea what we’re going to, if anything, yet:
Pico Vs. Island Trees/And the Relatives/Elle Macho @ Mercy Lounge
JEFF the Brotherhood, The Tits, The Weiners @ The End

Finally, if you haven’t seen this video of Billy Bob Thornton on a Q TV interview with his band the Boxmasters, please do watch it NOW. It will make your day. The man is just plain weeeeird. Via Nashville Cream.