from Tago Mago
Thursday, May 21, 2009
Tuesday, May 19, 2009
I think this would have been a really fun final show at Panhandle if it weren't for a few unfortunate mishaps such as: Daniel from Teenage Cool Kids getting arrested!, the Denton police shutting the show down, the location that it got moved to had a fucking gas leak. Other than those things- watching the Bleach Boys, which would be the last band to perform at the beloved 715 Panhandle, and then relocating to 818 Hickory to see the reunion of art-noise nutjobs Koji Kondo play was a blast.
I had never heard the Bleach Boys before and i was very impressed with their surf-punk chops. It shouldn't have been a big surprise to see the multitalented Orville (Bad Sports, Chief Deathrage) playing the drums. This dude can play everything! and really well.
The show moved after this and Uptown Bums played first at 818 Hickory. I stayed outside during this set and made fun of my friends. Then went to get more beer and missed the beginning of Koji Kondo's insane set. No microphone, but lots of audience participation on singing along to these songs while enjoying harmful, noxious gas. Who would've guessed so many people knew the words? Tyler dancing with the crowd was intense (so intense i think a lot of squares went outside during this set- pussies). This shit was LOUD. Definitely a good way to finish a house show that got kinda fucked. Good job Koji. As lame as reunion shows generally are, i really hope i get to see the guys again. I mean i've seen them a bunch, but they could never, ever get stale or boring.
I also hope Daniel of TCK wasn't caused too much consternation from the arrest. yikes. Good luck.
Tuesday, May 12, 2009
I love (good)free shows at college campuses. They just make sense, ya know?
This was an excellent chance to see a talented local act play two short sets in between some poetry readings. It's a shame it was outside on an oppresively humid day and more people weren't there to listen.
Zzz... first caught my attention with their terrible band name sometime last year. They made up for it the instant i heard thier unique, jangly, alt-country influenced rock. I was lucky enough to see their debut performance back in December at the Chat Room and it was even better than i expected.
This show at Brookhaven definitely sounded great(even without the second, flaky guitarist, Aaron)but, i got to hear a few more songs this time (i did miss the first 2 while grabbin' a Subway sandwich; guess that's what i get for having shitty taste in food). They've added a female vocalist/tamborine player to the line-up. Cool. Geoffrey Spurgin's vocals along with his skilled guitar playing has always been one of my favorite local songwriters. I love his ability to write such diverse songs; some slow, some fast, some kinda weird. Bassist Rob Mosley swapped with Geoffrey to riff it up on guitar for a song and added even more contrast to this fun set.
I'm sure i'll get another chance to catch this promising group again, soon. Hopefully at a better venue, with a better crowd, and if possible with better food. The music couldn't get better no matter what, though.
Friday, May 8, 2009
While visiting my friend in Pittsburgh recently, he put on Trail of Dead's album Source Tags and Codes. I didn't know then that i would get a chance to see them a few days later. It was fortutious while walking down the street in Stockholm when i saw a poster for this show. So we decided to hit that shit hard ....
I hadn't listened to them much since i saw them on tour for that album at Club Clearview in 2002. Since then, they've hired a full-time, talented drummer. So when Jason Reese(guitar/vocals) puts down his guitar to play sloppy drums he's not the only one keeping the beat. The other guitarist, Conrad Keely, forgoes the drums completely these days and sticks to guitar (save for one song on piano, weak!)instead of switching off like they used to. They've also added a keyboard player. I really liked looking at the lead, older guitarist that looks shockingly similar to Roy Orbison(probably on purpose, i hear looking like Roy O. gets dudes lots of ladies in Austin).
The red curtain opened and they started the set off with the soft piano opener "Invocation". The third song they played was the high spirited and anticipated "It was there that i saw you". This one went hard. They played a few other good ones i recognized and lots that i didn't. Even though i may not have been very familiar with the more recent output of these guys the show was really fun and energetic to watch. During "Caterwaul", Jason ran to the bar at the back of the room, while being fed mic cable, did a shot of whiskey, and surprised the shit out of my friend,Antoine, that was getting a drink. This was a show highlight for sure. Bummer my disposable camera(which btw was the first disposable camera i think Sweden has seen since 1994) was all out of film. They played one encore after close to an hour of thier dynamic set.
There's been a rumor about Trail of Dead that i've been hearing for years that they're actually from Plano not Austin(which i guess sounds cooler?). Along with countless other speculators, a Dallas Observer article mentioned this tidbit years ago and my friend in the 'Burg recently adamantly agreed. I was able to find an answer to this once and for all while i caught up with Conrad at the merch booth where he was selling original artwork. One print that included Daniel Johnston looked particularly interesting. But back to the point, after i asked him he said, "No. That was just a joke". I put a little pressure on him and probed him with a, "Really?" to which he gave me another denial. I enquired if he had anything against people from Plano to which he responded, "No, a lot of our friends are from there". I guess that solves my inane mystery.