Saturday, October 24, 2009

Live: CMJ showcase @ Europa featuring Teenage Bottlerocket, Cobra Skulls, Jon Snodgrass and Joey Cape, Banner Pilot and Higher Giant 10.25.9

Initially, the reason for the season for my attendance at this show was seeing Banner Pilot, who I adore. They have taken over the mantle from Two Cow Garage as the band that I travel long distances to either miss outright or play way too short sets. I had taken the L on the last two BP shows I tried to see, but even my shitty job did not make me miss the proceedings.

I got inside in time to catch the end of the Higher Giant set. Featuring Ernie Parada from a million awesome bands that started with Token Entry, they played a bunch of Queens accented punk rock not all that far from previous Parada franchises like Grey Area. They got a good response, despite their lead-off spot. Their new record is out courtesy of the good folk of The Black Numbers. Get it here.

Twin cities powerhouse Banner Pilot made their live debut for me next, playing a decent, but not fabulous show that leaned heavily on new stuff from their Fat debut Collapser. There were some sound issues, most of them seemingly precipitated by the front of house guy, but it was a decent set. I would have liked to hear more stuff from the first EP, but a good showing from the gents. I would have liked to have seen a longer set, but hopefully it won't be another four years til the next NYC show.

Jon Snodgrass and Joey Cape played next, reprising their increasingly frequent duo set for the first show of their most recent tour. While there was a small but vocal crew of Cape obsessives drinking their way to nirvana, I would say it was a Snodgrass room. Neither disappointed, but suffice to say I'm a Snodgrass proponent. Why he is not hugely famous I'm not sure, but I'm going to enjoy seeing him in the small rooms for as long as I can. You should see both of those jokers at Bar Nine tomorrow night, or for free at Maxwells on Monday. JS-NYC will be all up in those shows. You should be, too.

Cobra Skulls (from Reno) were up next. There has been a big buzz about them lately, so I got their records and found them to be pretty staggeringly underwhelming from where I was listening. I thought maybe the live show would sway me, but I literally took a nap after the first couple songs. Jack Terricloth was evidently out to see them, but unless you can have someone on that level to talk to during their set, I'd save your cash. Probably one of the most overrated things I've heard in a long while.

Luke was all about seeing Teenage Bottlerocket, as they hail from his hometown of Laramie, so I stuck around. I don't remember them rocking my world when they came through last time with the Copyrights and Unlovables, and I'm almost positive they were not good at the show at Knit with Chixdiggit, but they sure kicked my ass from note one to note last this time around. Wow-ee!! More hooks than a tackle box and a gang of song-along choruses that rival their aforementioned touring partners. It was a good move snapping up that guy from the Lillingtons. It fleshes out the sound a bit and while I would say that I prefer Ray's songs, Teenage Bottlerocket are a great fucking time. The Poison cover is a slippery slope, but it shouldn't keep you from snapping all their records up stat. They just dropped a new one called They Came From The Shadows on Fat that I haven't heard, but will soon be rectifying that situation. Look for a review soon but in the interim do whatever you need to to see Teenage Bottlerocket. Them boys kick some serious ass. Thanks to Luke for coming out, too!


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