Monday, August 31, 2009

Strike Anywhere - Iron Front EP

It's been a bit since Strike Anywhere released a record. Frankly, it's been even longer since I gave a shit. I love a fingerpoint as much as the next asshole, but SA got more than a little formulaic over their last couple records. They seemed neck and neck with Anti-Flag for the knee-jerk politic championship, which I might have been able to deal with had the songs not gotten a wee bit boring. I'm not sure whether they are still signed to Fat Wreck, but Strike Anywhere are exactly the kind of band you would expect to be the political band on their roster. Pop on over to their wiki and check the picture of them playing the improbably named "with justice we can cure this nation" fest in Japan. Opening for Rise Against, no doubt.

For this four song digital EP, Strike Anywhere have hashed out some affiliation with Bridge Nine. It certainly isn't going to trump the new Paint It Black EPs on my personal listening schedule, but Iron Front is a lot better than I thought it would be. It sounds no different from any other Strike Anywhere (read: Can I Say era Dag Nasty) song, so if you've been a fan previously, you may very well be stoked that Iron Front is available for purchase here. Legions of middle-class white kids will no doubt throw off the fetters of their parental homes and shout along with tracks like orphan age and hand of glory at Houses Of Blues all across this great nation of ours. If this is your cup of free-trade tea, dash on over to Bridge Nine and pick up Iron Front.


Sunday, August 30, 2009

Taking L's

Hey Kids:

It's been quite a week over at JS-NYC. Suffice to say that the heady odor of misanthropy that one can enjoy whenever you drop by JS-NYC HQ will not be dissipating anytime soon. While I take some personal L's, go on over to one of my new favorite blogs and enjoy some commentary over at Taking L's. Tarantino and Rob Zombie fans might do well to proceed with caution.


Monday, August 24, 2009

Paint It Black - Surrender EP

This the the second of the two EPs the band warned us would be coming out this Summer. The first, Amnesia, dropped about a month ago on Bridge Nine. This one is out today on Fat Wreck, but don't think PIB is jumping on the Lagwagon or anything. Surrender is pretty much a boot to the face for the average Fat Wreck /Warped Tour jocker. This is a fucking hardcore record. Listen to the bass on Worms are see if you aren't manifesting a circle pit in seconds. There are four songs in under seven minutes, each a short sharp shock that you would be a fool to dislike. Buy Surrender from the Fat Wreck kids here and then hustle over to Bridge Nine and grab Amnesia. They go together like straight-edge kids and self-righteousness.


Sunday, August 23, 2009

Paint It Black - Amnesia EP

Lots of bands talk about 'keeping it real' in the hardcore scene, but very few maintain that realness on the level of Philadelphia's Paint It Black. Fronted by Dan Yemin of Lifetime/Kid Dynamite fame, the Philly foursome are as issue driven as they are anti-barricade. Their live shows are never a bad time, and their records are always great, something very few hardcore bands can muster.

PIB announced last September that they would be abandoning the LP format and heretofore releasing purely 7" EPs. Why? Because it's quicker, and more importantly, hardcore. The first of the two is Amnesia, and coming out on the bastion of East Coast hardcore that is Bridge Nine. It should sell a ton. It's got all the barked vocals, topical content and pick slides that you have come to expect from the gents. Five songs are just over a minute, with the last tune Bliss taking a bit of a Jawbreaker turn and weighing in at a seemingly epic three and a half minutes. Pick up Amnesia here from Bridge Nine, but be sure to clear the furniture and make sure the insurance is paid up before you listen in the home, as shit may very well get broken.


Saturday, August 22, 2009

Banner Pilot - Collapser

Finally, the long talked-about new Banner Pilot record is here. It's called Collapser and it's on Fat Wreck. It's not terribly surprising that a new label is in the game, as I'm pretty sure their demo got better distro than Resignation Day got through Go-Kart.

Lest you be concerned, Collapser sounds like a Banner Pilot record. That is not to say it doesn't sound a lot like various Blake Schwarzenbach franchises we've enjoyed over the years, or that the gents are ignorant of The Lawrence Arms and Asian Man era Alkaline Trio. Both readers here realize than none of the aforementioned bands are hated at JS-NYC HQ and that I am pretty queer for the Minneapolis punk rock, so let me make the shocking disclosure that I'm pretty into Collapser. I think it takes a little bit of time to get under way, but Farewell To The Iron Bastards and Losing Daylight are two tracks that will definitely be highlights of the new live set and all of the songs are more than worthy additions to the BP canon. When we will see them in this small town we call NYC is up in the air. I spoke to Nate at Insubordination Fest and he thought they might be out here with Dead To Me and AmSteel. Doing the math, I hope it's a proper tour and not a CMJ show. CMJ gets to be more of a nightmare every year, and since it's easily been five years since Banner Pilot played in town I think we deserve more than 25 minutes. Don't get me started on the regional record release shows wherein the East Coast show is in Chicago. Really, guys?

My bitchy douchebaggery aside, you would do well to pick up Collapser pronto. The twelve songs pass in just a little over a half hour, making repeated plays pretty much a necessity. Set those wheels in motion by popping over to Fat Wreck and grabbing a copy here. The Banner Pilot web presence can be found here, should you want to enter their little corner of cyberspace.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Free Ice Cream Party

Yet another Free Ice Cream Party...
Hi Friends,

This coming Sunday is your last chance to attend a Free Ice Cream BBQ in Williamsburg this Summer...once again we're at the lovely Huckleberry know the steez...Free BBQ (2:30pm), Free Maker's Mark Milkshakes (4:30pm), Free Music, while it all lasts! Plus...

New music from Kats & Domer's upcoming Almost Fameless Mixtape Vol.4...

New Music from Jah C... "The Rise of Broken Blue Ep". This was recorded live @ Southpaw by his band The Antidote and is a demo version of the full length they will be bringing to the world soon!

The screening of all 3 of our videos (which you can watch

An incredible raffle with cool new prizes, and giveaways...and lots of other fun stuff...

Hope to see you there!

Thursday, August 20, 2009

After The Jump Fest

Looks like good times to be had in Brooklyn next Friday...



Featuring live performances by Suckers, Dinosaur Feathers,
Das Racist, Drink Up Buttercup and more!


The 3rd annual After The Jump Festival will take place at the Littlefield Art and Music space in Gowanus, Brooklyn. It begins with a kick-off party on Friday evening, August 28th, followed by two days of music, food and art on Saturday, August 29th & Sunday, August 30th. Pre-ordered 3-day passes are being sold at a discounted rate of $25 and individual day passes are $10. Prices at the door are $30 for 3-day and $12 for individual days.

After The Jump is the joint effort of 22 New York City music bloggers, writers, djs and photographers -- a coalition whose websites attract over 1.5 million viewers per week and have won such awards as VH1 Honors, Billboard and NME Best Music Blog. Founded in 2007 with the goal of helping new artists gain exposure while raising money for struggling school music programs.

The Courtyard will include:
Delicious grill menu designed by former WD-50 chef, Scott Koshkoodi
Live screenprinting by artist j.morrison
A giant hot pink elephant installation by Snoozer Loser
FREE BROOKLYN LAGER for the first hour of every day
And tons more surprises throughout the weekend!

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

New Hopewell

Hey Boy(s) and Girl(s):

The men of Upstate New York's Hopewell have some new delights coming your earhole's way.
Peep the skinny, courtesy of the good folk of Golden Egg:

Staying true to their 90's space rock roots, Hopewell releases the track "Stranger", the second single off their newest album, Good Good Desperation (2009 Tee Pee Records). A swirling, aggressive, hazy waltz in the tradition of Loop, Flying Saucer Attack, Ride and earlyMercury Rev, sound is treated more as sculpture, becoming a sonic canvas for whispered vocals, heavy phase and polyrhythms as layers of feedback and fuzz wash through the speakers.

The term space rock, originally describing bands in the late 60's like The Pink Floyd or albums like Bowie's Space Oddity, gave way to a 90's version that was decidedly more shoegaze oriented. Hopewell, being part of that original Detroit Space Rock revival on Burnt Hair Records are now getting louder and hazier than ever, combining the best of both the 60's and the 90's movements.

Hopewell will perform a version of the single "Stranger", along with several other tracks from Good Good Desperation at this year's All Tomorrow's Parties Festival in Monticello, NY. Asked by The Flaming Lips to do something "out of the norm" for their set, Hopewell's performance will include a medley of song variations both old and new, topped off with a Jane's Addiction cover. Dubbing it "The Desperation Suite", the 45 minute piece will also include the addition of a female choir as well as the the avant-garde sax player Mark Marinoff.

Weds 8/26 - Union Pool - Brooklyn, NY (w/ Spindrift)
Weds 9/9 - Rocks Off Boat Cruise - New York, NY (w/ Dead Meadow)
Thurs 9/10 - Cameo Gallery - Brooklyn, NY
Sun 9/13 - ATP Festival @ Kutcher's Country Club - Monticello, NY
Fri 10/23 - Union Pool - Brooklyn, NY (Tee Pee Records CMJ showcase)

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Live: Jon Snodgrass, Austin Lucas and Two Cow Garage @ Mercury Lounge 8.16.9

I had been waiting for this day for a long time. Save for the Copyrights / Unlovables / Dear Landlord show earlier this year, there are few shows that even come close to comparing to this Suburban Home curated tour.

Through the good graces of Tony Weinbender and Mr. Jon Snodgrass, I arrived to find my name on the list, along with a partially filled room. Two Cow Garage started the proceedings soon after the arrival of the Bros. Johnson, sometime around the 8:30 hour. The band was touring in their four-piece incarnation with keys. Reports from the Albany shows at Valentines were that the boys weren't fucking around, but even I was surprised about how hard the Buckeyes were bringing it. Micah seems to have embraced an Against Me! fashion sense, but sartorial elan aside, there are few roots rockers that can bring that level of energy to a not-especially-full room. I'm not sure when Two Cow are going to catch on here in town, but it can't come soon enough. There are no bands that even come close in this burgh.

Two Cow left after 40 minutes or so, warning that they'd be back later on in the set. Austin and Jon took the stage in short order, swapping songs back and forth for about an hour. Snodgrass had flown in straight from a wedding, but was his usual infatiguably pleasant self. The mutual admiration session was in full effect. If there is a more gracious, humble duo of drink-cadging singers, I've yet to see them. The vibe was infectious. I'm sure the free-flowing alcohol helped, but there was no shortage of smiles in the room after the set.

Two Cow returned after a short break to back up Austin for a couple songs. While I love both parties, I'm not sure it was the best musical combo. The Spartan Lucas arrangements need a little more subtlety from where I was drinking, but the combination was far from a bad one. We were treated to some classic Snodgrass heckling, as well. Jon joined the crew soon enough and bashed out a handful of tunes. Bizarrely, the cover of The Schemers classic Remember My Name that Two Cow and Jon recorded for Visitor's Band did not make an appearance, but it was the first night the bands were together, so I guess people in parts North and West will be the only ones that get that pleasure. While the omission was a mild disappointment, you couldn't have gotten the smile off my face with a crowbar afterward. Kudos to Suburban Home for supporting great bands like Two Cow Garage as well as Austin Lucas and Jon Snodgrass. The rest of the dates are below. Frankly (Mr./Ms. Shankly) you would be an idiot if you missed them.


8/18/2009 Pittsburgh, PA @ Club Cafe w/ Two Cow Garage and Austin Lucas Buy Tickets
8/19/2009 Buffalo, NY @ Mohawk Place w/ Two Cow Garage and Austin Lucas
8/20/2009 Cleveland, OH @ Beachland Ballroom (Small) w/ Two Cow Garage and Austin Lucas Buy Tickets
8/21/2009 Fort Wayne, IN @ The Brass Rail w/ Two Cow Garage and Austin Lucas
8/22/2009 Lansing, MI @ Mac’s Bar (Bermuda Mohawk Festival) w/ Two Cow Garage and Austin Lucas
8/23/2009 Chicago, IL @ Schubas Tavern w/ Two Cow Garage and Austin Lucas Buy Tickets
8/24/2009 Minneapolis, MN @ Triple Rock Social Club w/ Two Cow Garage and Austin Lucas Buy Tickets
8/25/2009 Madison, WI @ High Noon w/ Two Cow Garage and Austin Lucas Buy Tickets

Monday, August 17, 2009

Iron Age review up now at PopMatters!

Aficionados of that which is heavy:

While you are whiling away the hours waiting for the So Hideous My Love show this Saturday at Lit Lounge, take a second and check out the review of the new Iron Age record The Weeping Eye over at PopMatters.

Thanks to TeePee Records and Sarah Zupko at PopMatters.


Sunday, August 16, 2009

DJ Honda IV

DJ Honda is still around and kicking it. I spent a hazy couple of hours in his studio some years ago and always marveled that he could maintain a clothing store on Lafayette that had four employees and maybe six articles of clothing for sale, but he had pretty much dropped off my radar musically. Well, Honda's back with IV and it's kind of a banger. Some good stuff here: Sean Price does his usual job of murdering his track, as does EPMD. Why (or, more importantly, how) Fred Durst got included here is kinda of a chin-scratcher. I'm hoping for some violence at the release party involving Group Home, who also contribute some work-release rhymes for your auditory pleasure. Tracklisting is below. Keep track of Honda here.


01 Let It Out feat. Rakaa Iriscience (Dilated Peoples) & Money Harm aka Marvin Moore
02 Magnetic Arts feat. Mos Def
03 KGR & honda feat. Kool G Rap
04 Never Defeat Em feat. EPMD
05 Group Home Gangsta feat. Group Home
06 The Incredible feat. Fred Durst (Limp Bizkit)
07 D.R.E.A.M. feat. Sean Price (Heltah Skeltah)
08 Spinning feat. Buttah (The Rawcotiks)
09 That Knock feat. Problemz
10 Throw Your Hands Up feat. Ras Kass
11 City Of Miami feat. Garcia
12 Worldwide feat. P.M.
13 Another Day feat. The Kid Daytona & Juganot
14 30 Some Odd feat. Lord Tariq
15 Underdog By Nature feat. Rsonist (The Heatmakerz) & John Brackett

Saturday, August 15, 2009

R.I.P: Jim Dickinson (1941-2009)

Man, legends are dropping like flies around these parts. Pour out a little liquor for Jim Dickinson, who passed from complications from heart surgery this morning. I didn't even know he was sick.

Like most people my age, I first learned about Dickinson when he recorded Pleased To Meet Me for the mighty Replacements, but he midwifed a million other great records, like Big Star's Third. There were a handful of solo records, as well as a raft of guest turns like the keys he played on Wild Horses. We can also kinda thank him for siring Luther and Cody of North Mississippi All Stars. Whether as an artist, engineer or genetic donor, the world of music would be 1000x worse than it already is without Jim Dickinson.


Friday, August 14, 2009

Suburban Home Tour @ Mercury Lounge: This Sunday 8.16

I am as giddy as a schoolgirl to remind you all that what I'm calling the Monsters Of Suburban Home (MOSH!) tour is coming through town on Sunday. Featuring Two Cow Garage and Jon Snodgrass, along with the mighty Austin Lucas, I haven't been this excited for a show in a long time. I guess I should point out to the uninitiated that there should be no moshing whatsoever, even if the kids today are idiots that will shove their partners around to Celine Dion. The focus of the proceedings on Sunday should be songs, and damn good ones. My fantasy is that Two Cow will be backing Jon and Austin, but regardless of my stats pro leanings, this should be a hell of a great night. While I loathe the movie it references, I truly celebrate the entire Suburban Home catalog. See you front and center on Sunday!


Thursday, August 13, 2009

R.I.P: Les Paul (1915-2009)

Growing up infatuated with Eric Clapton, I was always a Strat fan, but as I grew older, the Les Paul grew on me. To this day, I'd like a black three-pickup Custom with nickel hardware despite my total inability to play anything that wasn't Peter Gunn. Of course, it hasn't stopped any of those fools on The Warped Tour, so maybe I've been postponing joy needlessly.

Around the time Les Paul turned 80, there was a little blub in the then-still-relevant Rolling Stone with Les in his living room, surrounded by a forest of flame-top Pauls. It was pretty much the coolest thing I'd ever seen and I've been looking for the photo online since his passing. Reading on, I found that Les was the father of multi-track recording and had a lot to do with making the solid body electric guitar what it is today.

Les played for decades on Monday nights at Iridium. It was always quite a scene, but I managed to make it there one night when Slash 'sat in'. Les humored him for about a bar and a half (coincidentally the amount of liquor our Mr. Hudson had in his system at the time) before making him look like an idiot for chorus after chorus. Our Les was not a man to be trifled with, personally or professionally. Take a minute tonight and tip one back for the Wizard of Waukesha.


Monday, August 10, 2009

Marley Marl - In Control Vol. 1 (special extended edition)

I always thought I had this in the crate back in the day, but looking at the pimpalicious photo to the left (dookie rope and dress blues? Marley you spoil us!) I guess not. Marley dropped In Control Vol. 1 for the first time in 1998. It compiled a full clip of Juice Crew bangers like The Symphony and Dropping Science. The new record adds a second disc of unreleased stuff, as well as some audio annotation from Marley himself and it's pretty damn spectacular. It sure isn't going to make me break out the Shop Boys stuff anytime soon. Check the tracklisting below. Any fan of real hip-hop should be picking this up immediately.

Disc 1
01. Marley Intro 1 0:29
02. Droppin' Science Ft. Craig G. 4:57
03. Marley Intro 2 0:35
04. We Write The Songs Ft. Biz Markie And Heavy D 5:24
05. Marley Intro 3 0:23
06. The Rebel Ft. Tragedy The Intelligent Hoodlum 3:46
07. Marley Intro 4 0:22
08. Keep Your Eye On The Prize Ft. Master Ace 5:41
09. Marley Intro 5 0:37
10. The Symphony Ft. Big Daddy Kane, Craig G., Kool G. Rap And Master Ace 6:05
11. Marley Intro 6 0:26
12. Live Motivator Ft. Tragedy The Intelligent Hoodlum 4:44
13. Marley Intro 7 0:19
14. Duck Alert Ft. Craig G. 4:13
15. Marley Intro 8 0:26
16. Simon Says Ft. Master Ace 4:01
17. Marley Intro 9 0:21
18. Freedom Ft. MC Shan 4:26
19. Marley Intro 10 0:23
20. Wack Itt Ft. Roxanne Shante 4:46
21. Marley Outro 0:27

Disc 2
01. Droppin' Science (Hip Hop Version) 5:02
02. The Symphony (Remix) 6:42
03. Wack Itt (Extended Version) 6:00
04. We Write The Songs (Live At The Apollo) 5:44
05. Symphony, Duck Alert, Droppin' Science (Live At The Apollo) 8:55
06. The Symphony (Radio Version) 4:07
07. Droppin' Science (Bonus Beats) 5:05
08. The Symphony (Marley's Symphony Scratch) 3:00
09. Evolution Ft. Debbie D, Glamorous, Kool G. Rap, MC Shan And TJ Swan 7:17
10. Juice Crew All Stars Ft. Craig G., Glamorous, Kool G. Rap, Tragedy, MC Shan And Roxanne Shante 7:25

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Drive By Truckers - The Fine Print (A Collection Of Oddities and Rarities 2003-2008)

Drive By Truckers have been pounding it out for years now with an intensity rivaling punk bands half their age, but without the benefit of rich parents, trust funds and/or showcase nightmares like Warped Tour. Their success has been at the expense of livers, lungs, marriages and record contracts, not to mention band members. The Fine Print collects most of the b-sides and castoffs from their recent (perhaps now over?) New West tenure in a single handy cd collection.

For this asshole, the record is worth it for the opening pair of songs: George Jones Cell Phone Talking Blues has floated around Hood solo shows for years now and the cover of Tom Petty and The Heartbreakers Rebels has made the same Bigfoot-esque level of frequency. Having them is easily available form is a very good thing. Here's the rest of the track listing:

1. George Jones Talkin’ Cell Phone Blues
2. Rebels
3. Uncle Frank (alternate version)
4. TVA
5. Goode’s Field Road (alternate version)
6. The Great Car Dealer War
7. Mama Bake A Pie (Daddy Kill A Chicken)
8. When The Well Runs Dry
9. Mrs. Claus’ Kimono
10. Play It All Night Long
11. Little Pony And The Great Big Horse
12. Like A Rolling Stone

Personally, I wondered how much of the material would be from Jason Isbell. His "here's your hat, where's your hurry?" departure from the band and divorce from DBT bassist Shonna Tucker have resulted in Isbell's work being expunged from the DBT live canon. He has but a single track here, in the form of the stellar TVA. Tellingly, it follows an alternate version of DBT co-leader Mike Cooley's Uncle Frank. Both songs address the same issue from different sides. Doing the math, Isbell is gone while Cooley is still around, so it would appear that their differences may have run deeper than the average person could see from the outside. Interpersonal speculation aside, The Fine Print is better and more cohesive than the records most band's releases, even if there are four different singers. Pre-order it from New West here and keep tabs on the new record DBT is allegedly recording here.


Saturday, August 8, 2009

Live: Tenement with Thee Make Out Party @ Lost & Found 8.7.9

There is quite a buzz revolving around the men of Tenement. Many people were bummed when they didn't make it to Insubordination Fest, but as luck would have it a serendipitious split 7"with sort of locals The Used Kids prompted a joint tour and a show at Lost & Found. Friday night and free are a good combo for this broke asshole, so off I went.

I rolled in for the last half of Thee Make Out Club set. I think that it's just about time that the royal Thee was relegated purely to Billy Childish projects. TMOC was pretty decent: poppy, but with some more aggro undertones. Their promo says 1915 Fruitgum meets The Dictators, but let's not run with it. I'd say a little harder MTX, but they seemed to be well liked. Check 'em out here and decide for yourself.

While I was killing time and indulging in casual lechery, I couldn't help but notice a little guy with a ballcap that had Siege sharpied on it, along with a thrash mullet and some sort of hardcore t-shirt. I had just read Mike Gitter's nostalgia-fest as/re: Siege on Double Cross, which really only reinforced the dual truisms that I am old and that kid was at best an infant during what passed for the Siege heydey. Of course, as Tenement started to set up, it quickly became obvious that said thrashling was the bass player. Once set up, the trio set it off with a new take on the Dinosaur Jr./Husker Du raggedly melodic sound. Good, good stuff. It would appear that their formal releases are confined purely to the vinyl idiom, but you can check out some digital approximations here. My pick is Earwig, but pick your own favorite and see Tenement if they make it through your town.


Friday, August 7, 2009

American Steel - Dear Friends And Gentle Hearts

It's been a long strange trip for the men of American Steel. They have weathered cancer, the dissolution of Lookout Records and a five year tenure as a more synth-driven alter ego called Communique to persevere in their 14th year. AmSteel's return after a five year hiatus was met with a warm reception. The record was entitled Destroy Their Future, very probably with tongue planted firmly in cheek. It brought back the Cali punk house party vibe their earlier New Disorder stuff sported, with a gang of sing-a-long choruses that were hard to drink out of your head.

AmSteel went out on on tour with Alkaline Trio to promote Destroy Their Future, but to the disappointment of many without longtime guitar wrangler Ryan Massey, who proved too busy expanding his newly acquired Sharkbite Studios to make the run. It was good to get a record from the gents nonetheless, but soon after the tour ended, speculation ensued as to whether it would be another five years before they dropped another set of songs. Lucky for us, it's only taken two for Dear Friends and Gentle Hearts to make its appearance. Opening with the short sharp shock of Emergency House Party, it's pretty obvious that AmSteel are in the house. There is a healthy amount of the East Bay meets Motown vibe we've come to expect from the foursome, with upstrokes aplenty. Sweetening the pot, JS-NYC fave Josh Staples from The New Trust and The Velvet Teen lends guest vocals to a couple tracks and scores a little vocal homage from the gents as well. This is the best Fat record in a long time. There isn't a chorus on Dear Friends and Gentle Hearts that you won't want to sing along with at the top of your lungs, regardless of sobriety or time of day. Pop on over to Fat and see for yourself if their new repricing plan encompasses AmSteel. Go back often and see if the rumored American Steel/Dead To Me/Banner Pilot tour comes to fruition, or just wait for my screams of joy.


Thursday, August 6, 2009

Rvivr - LIfe Moves EP

If you've been unlucky enough to talk about music with me in the last year or so, if we weren't talking about Austin Lucas, I was probably raving about Shorebirds. Man, am I a mark for It's Gonna Get Ugly. With all due respect to them, I never really fell for Latterman, but I'm damn well going to check out any band that's got anybody from Jawbreaker within a mile of their ranks. Shorebirds featured bass ridiculoso Chris Bauermeister, along with Matt Canino from the aforementioned Latterman and operated in the time-honored punk paradigm that is the power trio. When done right, there is nothing better. Believe me, Shorebirds handled themselves just fine, but as my god is a cruel god, the band broke up before they made it out East.

Bauermeister still plays with Canino in the new project called Mutoid Men, but they have yet to release anything. In the interim, there is Rvivr, which has Canino and his lady Erica, who is also his partner in Rumbletowne Records, in the fold. I'm not sure whether it's a trio, but it's pretty fucking good. I am pretty against the couples that push the 7Seconds credo too far and live and rock together (see: dreck like Mates Of State) but I'm waiving that for Life Moves. Four songs, all of which fucking rip, if I might get all William F. Buckley with my flowery prose. Think Bridge and Tunnel (who are great, too) times ten with a big Jawbreaker fixation. Erica's got a set of pipes on her, like Chris Wollard meets Tim Armstrong's ex and it suits Canino's rasp just fine. The opener Can't Stand It is probably my favorite of the four tracks on Life Moves, but it's one hell of a tight race, with Scrooged an almost imperceptible second. I can't recommend this enough. Pick it up immediately from Rumbletowne here.


Wednesday, August 5, 2009

New Iron Age out today!


The new Iron Age record entitled The Sleeping Eye is out today, courtesy of the good folk of TeePee Records. Kinda metal, kinda hardcore, all awesome. Look for a review soon at PopMatters, but in the interim, cop that shit here.


Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Dead Mechanical Tour Dates!

Boys and/or Girls:

The mighty Dead Mechanical, of Baltimore MD, will be sallying forth on some tour dates, starting in a couple weeks. I'm bummed that there are no NYC dates and that they are upping the ante by playing with Whiskey Trench in Montreal. Aargh! They also have a new 7" that you can enjoy visually to the left. DM missive is below:


We are going to go out for 9 days in august. If you can help us out with a show, or come and see us that will be great. We will have our new 7" Binghamton Calling b/w Leave it Alone for all these shows

Friday August 21st - New Brunswick, NJ
Full of Fancy
Dead Mechanical
Break Evens
NightBirds (ex-Ergs, Hunchback, For Science. Punk. 1st Show)


Saturday August 22nd - Syracuse, NY
Night Owls
Dead Mechanical

@ Westcott Community Center
821 Euclid Ave.
Syracuse, NY 13210

Sunday August 23rd - Boston, Mass
None More Black
Sakes Alive
Kill Conrad
Dead Mechanical
New Warden

@ Great Scott
1222 Commonwealth Ave
Allston, MA 02134
(617) 734-4502

Monday August 24th - New Hampshire
Dead Mechanical
Totally Destroyed

@ Cercle National Club
550 Rockland Avenue
Manchester, NH

Tuesday August 25th - Montreal, CANADA
Dead Mechanical
Whiskey Trench

2109 Bleury St., Montreal
BBQ @ 8
SHOW @ 10

Wednesday August 26th - Toronto, CANADA
Thursday August 27th - Chaosome - Lexington, KY
Friday August 28th - Cincinatti, OH

Saturday August 29th - Pittsburgh, PA
Dead Mechanical
The Shutouts
The Rustbelt Homewreckers

@ The Rock Room
1054 Herron Ave
Pittsburgh, PA 15219-6718
(412) 683-4418

Monday, August 3, 2009

Live: The Mekons @ Mercury Lounge 8.1.9

(photo left stolen from bob berger on the mekons list)
It had been a couple of years since I had seen The Mekons. I had seen many, many Mekons shows in the past in the last fifteen years and that was well before Langford solo shows and Waco Brothers shows started to factor into the equation. It's horrible to think that I could have gotten jaded even to The Mekons. Regardless, after this show,I'm right back on the horse.

I could listen to Jon Langford talk all night long. He is undoubtably the spiritual godfather to punk rock banter masters like Patrick Costello. The band was more or less intact, save for Tom's absence and Jean Cook stepping in at the last minute to play violin. Only an hour and a half of a set, but still better than most I've heard this year. Here's a setlist, courtesy of NYCtaper. Perceptive readers might be able to find a recording of the show on the interwebs.

01 [introduction]
02 Beaten and Broken
03 Club Mekon
04 Give Me Wine or Money
05 [banter]
06 Tina
07 [banter]
08 Corporal Chalkie
09 [banter]
10 Tempted to Believe
11 Perfect Mirror
12 Fantastic Voyage
13 [banter]
14 Abernant 1984/85
15 [banter]
16 Dickie, Chalkie, and Nobby
17 Diamonds
18 Thee Olde Trip to Jerusalem
19 Cockermouth
20 Ghosts of American Astronauts
21 Heaven and Back
22 [banter]
23 Big Zombie
24 Memphis, Egypt
25 [encore break]
26 The Hole in the Elephant’s Bottom
27 The Last Dance
28 Oblivion
29 Hole in the Ground
30 [banter]
31 Powers and Horrors
32 Hard to Be Human

Chris Mills popped up towards the end of the set for Heaven and Back, Mekon-approved blood alcohol level in tow, having previously fetched the alcohol rider for the band as the set ran on. I would have liked to have seen more of him, especially in an opening slot. Megan Reilly opened instead, backed by a stellar backing band comprised of Tony Maimone, James Mastro and Mekon drummer Steve Goulding. She was (and is) good, but it's hard to go wrong with a backing band like that. Heavy hitters aside, Reilly is not the Mekons, so she could only pale in comparison. Sadly, this was the last show of the short tour, but there was talk of a new recording, so I hope we see the band back in town damn soon.


Sunday, August 2, 2009

LIve: Mike Watt and Nels Cline @ Central Park Summerstage 8.1.9

I had missed out on the Watt show in town owing to having ponied up hard for another ticket/social obligation and was kicking myself ever since, so when I heard he was coming through Summerstage with Nels Cline in tow, I made a point of being there. Further investigation turned up that the performance was the debut of yet another Watt project called Floored By Four that also features ex-Cibo Matto multi-instrumentalist Yuka Honda and ex-Lounge Lizard Dougie Bowne. An interesting combo, especially with Cline touring with Wilco and half of the band living a couple thousand miles away from Watt's home port of San Pedro. There hasn't been a diary entry about it yet, but as Watt was in town for the 25th Anniversary of Double Nickels On The Dime, I wouldn't be surprised if the lion's share of the music was composed over the internet and refined over the days before the show.

Like Banyan and the zillion other projects Watt works with out West, there isn't a huge structure to the proceedings. Everyone involved in the project can play, so chops weren't really so much the issue as the listenability. Most of the songs were pleasant enough, especially the closing Maggot Brain, where Cline more than earned his pay, wringing sounds and textures from his guitar that don't come from too many other instruments. From note one to note last, nothing Cline played did anything to take away from his role as the pre-eminent guitar player of our generation. It still staggers me that Wilco are so mind-numbingly boring with him in their ranks. Nels and his brother still run the experimental Cryptogramophone Records, which must afford him some solace, but the contrast is really striking. Watt was his normal self, playing his ass off when necessary, but never deviating totally from holding down the bass role. You'll never confuse him with Stanley Clarke, but he is totally unmistakable with a four-string in his hand. Honda got a moment or two to shine and Bowne certainly had a lot of work to do tying it all together, but both more than held their own.

Whether the crowd felt the same way, I'm not sure. Unless America's tastes have swung radically in this era of post-Obama euphoria, I'd say that 90% of the crowd was there to see M. Ward. He's a friend of friends and on Merge, but there's not too much about him that does anything for me. Safe money is that there were more people there hoping to see Zooey Deschanel than any of the openers, but Floored By Four more than held their own. I'm not sure how regularly we'll see the band actually perform, but it was a hell of a fine way to spend an Summer evening before a Mekons show.


Saturday, August 1, 2009

Lucero 1372 Overton Park preorder

When the mighty Lucero were in town for a whirlwind three shows, they played a good number of the songs that are going to be released formally on 1372 Overton Park. Not surprisingly, they were all pretty stellar. The record's not out until early October, but if you pre-order over at their web presence, you get a sampler with six songs from the record along with various other swag items. I opted for the patch package, as I am a cheap bastard, but you can get poster sets and all sorts of other swag, if you are of a mind. Swag, schmag: I can't stop playing the new songs. Here's a link to the pre-order. Buy it now and thank JS-NYC later.