Thursday, June 30, 2005
Wednesday, June 29, 2005
Tuesday, June 28, 2005
Looks like they'll be going on tour with the National this fall, another band I've been really into this year.
Monday, June 27, 2005
There would be pictures on the photoblog to share, had I not left my camera somewhere. This time he left the drummer at home, doing his usual solo show where every song sounded completely different from the last three times I'd heard him play it (reminding me exactly why I love seeing him live). Sigh . . .. Though I still think he is at his best solo, I'd love to see him do a special show in Chicago with a full band, just to see how it would sound.
Friday, June 24, 2005
Wednesday, June 22, 2005
Tuesday, June 21, 2005
The Birdman you saw in Venus is Bobby Birdman- he's a lap-pop musician from LA-by-way-of-Portland. I don't have any of his stuff, though I have a couple of mp3s- I think you might like it. You can learn more about him here and check out some of his stuff for free here.
Monday, June 20, 2005
Saturday, June 18, 2005
Friday, June 17, 2005
S-K put on a pretty great rock show. Janet Weiss is a stellar drummer, and Carrie Brownstein seemed to be having the most fun on stage with her crazy guitar solos and flailing leg kicks. Corin Tucker was cute, if not a bit timid on stage- her voice is so big and wailing that it doesn't seem like it's actually coming from her mouth. Their set list was completely predictable, but exactly what I'd been hoping for all the same- kicking off with "The Fox," the first song from the new album The Woods, then running through virtually the entire album, sprinkling in a few songs from 2003's One Beat as well. I don't usually find myself looking forward to long guitar solos, either, but I couldn't wait to see the 11-minute solo in "Let's Call It Love" take place on stage, and Carrie definitely ran with it. Finally, after wrapping up with "Entertain," the new album's single, they came back out for the expected retrospective of older material, most of which I'm not familiar with since I only have One Beat and The Woods.
Continuing in my streak of recommending rock albums, I've put up The Woods in the recommended section. It's without a doubt one of the best albums of the year so far. If last year was my year to explore weird folk and electronic, this has so far been my year to rediscover real rock.
Thursday, June 16, 2005
This could be cool if 1) I'm not too tired from Lollapalooza and 2) I could actually get a ticket. Why is that cool if I could just go watch them at Lollapalooza that day (other than the small venue aspect)? Well, the daily schedules are out, and as usual, things conflict: the Walkmen play during the Pixies (?!?!?!) and Ambulance LTD plays during Trail of Dead. Someday I'll go to a festival where the schedule is built specifically to cater to my musical needs.
Tuesday, June 14, 2005
09.06.05 - Atlanta, GA - Atlanta Symphony Hall
09.07.05 - Durham, NC - Carolina Theater
09.09.05 - Philadelphia, PA - Tower Theater
09.11.05 - North Bethesda, MD - Music Centre of Strathmore
09.12.05 - New York City, NY - Beacon Theater
09.13.05 - New York City, NY - Beacon Theater
09.15.05 - Boston, MA - Opera House
09.16.05 - Montreal, Quebec - Théâtre Maisonneeuve
09.18.05 - Ottawa, Ontario - TBA
09.19.05 - Toronto, Ontario - Massey Hall
09.20.05 - Ann Arbor, MI - Michigan Theater
09.21.05 - Chicago, IL - Chicago Theater
09.23.05 - Madison, WI - Orpheum Theater
09.24.05 - Minneapolis, MN - State Theater
09.27.05 - Vancouver, BC - Orpheum
09.28.05 - Seattle, WA - Paramount Theater
09.29.05 - Portland, OR - Roseland Theater
10.01.05 - Oakland, CA - Paramount Theater
10.03.05 - San Diego, CA - Copley Symphony Hall
10.05.05 - Los Angeles, CA - Hollywood Bowl
10.06.05 - Las Vegas, NV - The Joint
Monday, June 13, 2005
Then in minor-celebrity (very minor) news, I saw Jen from the Bachelorette while eating lunch at the Northside Bar and Grill Sunday afternoon. I appeared to be the only person in the bar who noticed who she was.
Friday, June 10, 2005
I need ideas for another group effort- we're trying to do them monthly. Last month was a group mix tape- what else could we all write about or debate?
Thursday, June 09, 2005
This just in:
DOUBLE DOOR REACHES SETTLEMENT WITH LANDLORD, WILL REMAIN OPEN FOR NINE YEARS
Double Door wishes to thank all of our friends and neighbors for their support. We were very pleased we were able to reach an agreement with our landlord Brian Strauss which will allow us to continue to bring the best in live music to Chicago through 2014. Brian Strauss has shown his commitment to proving a home for Double Door for many years to come. Everyone who came to the court hearing, wrote letters, or signed a petition has our gratitude. We are overwhelmed by the outpouring of love for the club, and hope Chicago music lovers will continue to support the many great cultural outlets of our city.
In other news (brought to my attention by Liz!), the Nike Run Hit Wonder series is coming back this summer! And unlike last summer, I'll be signing up before it sells out. Chicago details are still forthcoming, but here's some general info:
Nike Run Hit Wonder
NYC July 20
PDX July 24
CHI Sept 13
LA Sept 24
RUN FAST.RUN LOUD.
It's a race. It's a party. It's your chance to lace up with 60,000 runners across the nation. Nike Run Hit Wonder is back... and with fantastic performances by bands like Joan Jett and The Blackhearts, The Donnas, and Fountains of Wayne, this year's tour will rock harder than ever. Enjoy live music before the start, along the course and at the post-race celebration. Plus, you'll receive a special edition Nike Dri-FIT t-shirt for Race Day and a finisher's medal after you cross the line. But sign up soon; last year's event sold out in all four cities! Learn more and register at
TUNE UP WITH FREE TRAINING RUNS
Whether you're looking to give your best performance or simply want to get in shape this summer, crank up the volume with a little group energy. We've got Nike Run Hit Wonder training runs several days per week in each city on the tour: No matter what your level, join us for free coaching, refreshments and more. Select dates will even include special workouts and/or musical entertainment! Check out our website for exact times and locations. And while you're there, use our Run Hit Mix Master to create your own tune--and send it along to inspire a friend. Get details at NikeRunHitWonder.com
Here's what I'm wondering though- are they kind of moving away from the one-hit-wonder band theme this time- I seem to remember Joan Jett having more than one hit. If only I could have been a part of the Devo/Flock of Seagulls lineup of last summer. Now there are some great one-hit wonders.
Wednesday, June 08, 2005
I was heartbroken when I found out the Russian Futurists were stuck at the Canadian border and wouldn't be making it to the Empty Bottle last night- what had been my Lineup of the Year was now just another good electronic show. Don't get me wrong, I was excited for both Caribou and the Junior Boys, but there's just something about a killer three-band lineup that I hadn't seen since last year's Mouse on Mars/Ratatat/Junior Boys show at the Logan Square Auditorium. After waiting 45 minutes in the dank, poorly ventilated, and non-air-conditioned Bottle, the Junior Boys took the stage and played mostly from their lovely debut album, Last Exit. Jeremy Greenspan played guitar, sang in his oh-so-smooth voice, and sort of bounced around awkwardly on stage, while keyboardist/electronics guru Matt Didemus just stared up at the ceiling and smoked his cigarette disaffectedly, refusing to take off his hooded sweatshirt even though the temperature had to be 90+ degrees. The best songs were the most danceable, like "Bellona" and "Birthday," and even with the insufferable heat, I found the ability to dance just a little bit.
Caribou's set made me incredibly glad I've gotten into the habit of wearing earplugs to shows (a habit that began after I started getting a weird clicking in my left ear, which has since stopped, thank God). Dan Snaith, the man behind Caribou/Manitoba, traded between acoustic guitar, keyboards, recorder, and some drums that he tore apart like a maniac. Holy crap. Every time he and 2nd drummer Peter Mitton kicked off a song together, I jumped out of my skin. Needless to say, it was a great show. I had no idea Caribou's music involved so much use of the recorder. And the encore of "Every Time She Turns Around It's Her Birthday" was exactly how I would have chosen to end the show as well. I'm glad we were on the same page here.
A full review will be up here and on tinymixtapes soon!
Tuesday, June 07, 2005
Monday, June 06, 2005
Sunday, June 05, 2005
Architecture in Helsinki could rival Mates of State for Cutest Band Ever. The Australian eight-piece flooded the small Schubas stage with their myriad of instruments, including two keyboards, two trombones, a tuba, a trumpet, a flute, clarinet, recorder, and various noisemakers/shakers (including a severed hand multi-instrumentalist Gus Franklin kept waving around) in addition to the traditional drums/bass/guitar, and every member played at least three of the aforementioned instruments. Their set consisted almost entirely of songs from their new album, In Case We Die, with the exception of the single "Owls Go" from their debut album Fingers Crossed. That was fine with me, since In Case We Die is a better album overall (and "Owls Go" is the best song on Fingers Crossed). They all danced around and acted generally oddly for their hour on stage, and it was just so adorable I thought I was going to drown in their cuteness. I mean, one of them is named Gus, for goodness sake. In between songs they told silly jokes in their Australian accents- funny how everything is funnier in an accent. Show closer "Do the Whirlwind" was the highlight, as they sort of "jammed" it out, as much as indie-pop bands can jam, that is (i.e. a four minute song instead of two minutes!).
For more examples of this band's cuteness, see their website.
Tiny Mix Tapes
Nick Hornby identified the particularly male obsession with making tapes for every occasion in High Fidelity. Since then, thanks to CD burning and the iPod, playlists have become a global obsession. If you're running out of inspiration, this charming website will help, as it excellently combines both the joy of making and receiving a DIY compilation in one list-heavy blast. People type in their requests for a mix tape from the needy to the bizarre and the site's users type back their selections (incorrect). Everything is covered from moods ("soundtrack to an awkward silence") to more specific needs ("songs that have titles implying baldness... to insult, not to reassure"). The songlists are all strangely spot-on and often unexpectedly leftfield. Only requests for "songs to get over THE girl" are banned.
Friday, June 03, 2005
Meanwhile, now that I've seen Built to Spill and will be seeing Sleater-Kinney in a couple weeks, I think all that's left on my bands-I've-been-trying-to-see-for-years-unsuccessfully list is the New Pornographers . . . oh wait! They're coming to the Metro Thursday, October 20 with Destroyer! Good God could they make me wait any longer! That should be a shortly after the release of their third album.
Thursday, June 02, 2005
I'll remind everyone again next week, but considering I get emails from people making drinking plans for Friday night first thing Monday morning, it's always good to bring things up in advance.
Wednesday, June 01, 2005
Bartlett also points us to Joe Pernice's vision of Indie Rock Cribs, with an accompanying pilot video and everything. This would go well in a proposal next to my idea for the Indie Rock Bachelorette.