Wednesday, December 31, 2008

2008 favs

Got to do in no particular order(yes I know that's a cop out)
Forward Russia - Life Processes - they may not have liked it but I loved it
Look See Proof - Between Here and there
Little Man Tate nothing worth having comes easy
Mystery Jets Twenty One
Johnny Foreigner Waited up till it was light
I Was A Cub Scout i want you to know there is always hope
These New Puritans Beat Pyramid
Cajun dance Party The Colourful Life
Foals Antidotes
Blood Red shoes Box Of Secrets

Really Great
Frightened Rabbit
The Twilight Sad EPs
Elle Milano
The Pigeon Detectives
The Wombats
Ra Ra Riot
The Courteeners
The Duke Spirit
Lightspeed Champion
Late Of the Pier
The whip
The Long blondes
Friendly Fires

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

The Courteeners

been listening to the courteeners for a while - st jude is a decent cd. they are supposed to be at SXSW 2009 - i think not! they just announced they are supporting Morrissey's US tour during SXSW - well announced means my RSS feed picked up their myspace calendar. I loath the smiths, hate Morrissey but will have to brave the truly horrible live Nation mess that is the new House Of Blues. anyone any idea how when tickets will be available?
wish me Luck.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

SXSW 2009 new bands added
Nacional asked to be a myspace friend and added they were going to SXSW and Look See Proof have confirmed. Ra Ra Riot think they are going. and Passion pit - ugh and white Lies are confirmed. Anyone Else?

also confirmed Pete and The Pirates and Friendly Fires

Thursday, December 18, 2008


December is a bleak time of year. Consider our total of gigs last year - as gigs are announced and it seems January, February and March are filling up I look and despair.
I have a total of five gigs lined up right through the end of February. I have had weeks with more gigs than that. The total lack of any visiting bands I like make me feel like a music hater and isolated away from the LA/SF/NYC meccas which get lightening visits that would make life bearable. Is it any wonder that I travel long distances in January and February just to see bands, its sheer desperation.
Oh well there is always March and SXSW to look forward to.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

2008 reviews

We went to a lot of gigs in 2008, no really, a lot.......
We figure we will have been to 113 or 117 shows by the end of the year depending on whether we call CMJ a festival or not. Yes that's right that outrageous figure doesn't include SXSW!
About one very three days, not bad when you consider we both hold two very time consuming jobs (60 or so hours a week).
So its probably time to review highlights and bands who we saw for the first time or that impressed us and those that didn't.

2008 saw The Spinto band implode, releasing a mediocre second album and losing any energy that they had at the start of the year. We saw them in Philly in January and Boston in May then in October. Not a good situation.

We saw White Williams at The Middle East Upstairs in January, young and green, his album is spotty but has some good tracks, this one may burn out or mature and improve.

We saw Ra Ra Riot many times (6) in 2008, starting in February sometimes as a headliner other times supporting The Cribs, we never were disappointed and I love their album.

On the other hands The Virgins who we saw that night in February plus another support slot just bugged the hell out of me, file this under Vampire Weekend syndrome, over hyped and under talented, I loath this band.

Spear of Destiny, a blast of the past, Kirk Brandon still rocking good style so glad we got to see the show and a side note Kirk was a real nice guy.

Liars & No Age, well sometimes you have got to listen to what is popular locally, even when as in this case it just leaves you lost as to the appeal. Leave it as not for me.
Until later..........

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Exit Clov review

To follow up on my previous blog it seems The Eames Era has followed the slew of bands that have broken up this year which makes me sad.
On a brighter note it was really nice to see just how much Exit Clov seemed to have developed over the summer. The songs are really much more structured with more intricate guitar work that adds rather than distracts from the songs.
I hope this leads to tehm being signed and having some success, we get to see them again when they play Middle East Upstairs on December 4th.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008


Sometimes you love bands as soon as you hear them, this year Cajun Dance Party and Look See proof both astonished with their debut albums. Then there are bands who you hear and think are interesting then a funny thing happens when you see them live suddenly the music doesn't just make sense it deepens and you see the layers the depth the necessity of it.
Seeing the Cribs for th first time showed how The New fellas was an essential listen which made your heart soar, then again when we caught These New Puritans, an album which had appeared spotty when listening to it suddenly showed its depth and undercurrents and became essential listening. JoFo took a little longer, the first time we saw them they intrigued but after two additional gigs at CMJ they sneaked under my skin so much that I cant stop listening to the CD. As you listen you can just go back and see the intricacies and passion of the live set.
So does it surprise you that my top albums of 2008 are going to include The Colourful Life, Between Here And There, Waited Up 'til It Was Light and Beat Pyramid?

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Cloud Cult/Exit Clov

Music begets music. Two years ago at SXSW we got to BD Riley's early to catch The Victorian Gentlemans Club (good thing too it was mobbed) and caught a band we hadn't heard of - The Eames Era. Way outside of what we were looking for, they charmed us and moved into our VERY short list of American bands who don't suck.
When they turned up in Boston last year for a gig at Hennesseys near the North End they spread the love. (photos here Supporting was a band who we hadn't really heard of - Exit Clov. True before they came on there was some signs they might appeal

exit clov 20070617_1155

But if you look further (photos here and here you find a band who can write charming pop songs, some of which have a bite to them, who sometimes seem to struggle with an identity crisis but when they pull it off are fun, charming and with underlying thought provoking tendencies. Check out their myspace - and their myspace perhaps you will be as charmed as I was.
Exit Clov play at the middle East Downstairs on Thursday November 13th supporting Cloud Cult - be there.
Exit Clov MK ULtra

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Tears but not of sorrow.

America has hope again, so does the world. Perhaps some of the rot can be reversed.
There is hope again, what can you say, the eight years of hell should be over.

A Break from music

Everyone else is doing it so why not.
I can't vote today - being British.
Please vote but vote for hope, vote for decency, vote to show the world America isn't racist.
Please America, this time do not make me cry.
Oh and a thought about the last 8 years

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Mini CMJ

So running down to CMJ for Friday and saturday was incredibly successful and fun.
Despite the best efforts of i95 south we didnt spend hours stuck on Friday and got to teh hotel in time t turn around and run over to Brooklyn to see Sky Larkin.
Nice little set, so good to hear both new songs entirely (Matador), newish songs (Fossil, i) and old ones like molten.
All three were class people to talk to as well.
We then moved to Manhattan, found our favorite malysian restaurant had a wonderful meal before hitting Fontanas.
Johnny foreigner put on a good show and managed to at least touch base with them.
Cab to Irving Plaza got us there at a decent time though a bad decision left us stuck behind some unnecessary stage equipment.
I loved the whip and Late Of The Pier BUT those DJs, absolutely dreadful.
Saturday started with us hitting our favorite Thai restaurant, (see a pattern here) then heading off to the UNCMJ show.
We spent all day here, at 4:30 when Sky Larkin went on it was woefully under attended but again a sweet show, better than Friday I think.
We watched a number of bands - all of which were watchable. Thne the Mae-shi came on - reminded me of The Blood Arm - total performance that keeps you just laughing and amazed.
Cut Off Your Hands have some decent songs but aren't going to save music.
Then JoFo again. Alexi fussed like crazy as his pedals were knackered - again - but they got it together and put on a great show.
You have to see JoFo to truly get them and the more the better. Starting to be totally entranced.
Totally loving Jofo and sky Larkin - and why not!

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Yeasayer Boston Oct 22nd 2008

a bit of a let down.
Suckers were awful and Yeasayer seemed less wonderful than normal, stage lights were dreadful - so no decent pics and a horribly obnoxious drunken fool behind me.
But i did record Sunshine - you will hear his noise in the video unfortunately
Yeasayer playing Sunshine in Boston

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

So busy!

Well the Bearsuit gig was excellent, just as good as the venue was dreadful. so enthusiastic, so fun, so talented so under attended. We also got the dirt, why the dreaded deportation, well no work visas - oops - and a suitcase of capes and marching band outfits. three hours of interviews later they confessed and got sent back to the UK- too sad.
Ra Ra Riot came back to Boston and were rapturously received rewarding us with a new song- Yeah!
Frightened Rabbit hit the Middle East, but without their bass pedals and necessary leads for keyboards and laptop - oops. But playing a pared down set they still blew Spinto band off the stage with a rude Boston Audience leaving before Spintos came on stage. Spintos tried their best but just seemed demoralised - too sad.
Frightened Rabbit playing I Feel Better on Saturday night

coming up Yeasayer who always put on a good show, plus a rush trip down to catch the tail end of CMJ.
What are we seeing? or what do we hope to?
Sky Larkin play Friday for free at 3:45 (I SO want to see this band), Johnny Foreigner play either 7 or 8 that night at a free gig, feasibility low. The Insiders gig at Irving Plaza, who knows the schedule for that BUT we do get to see Late Of The Pier and the Whip. will we have time to run and see Scissors for Lefty at midnight - who knows but we can hope.
Saturday has a UNCMJ show that runs for 10 hours and includes Sky Larkin, Johnny Foreigner and cut Off your hands.
Oh and by Thursday we will have reached the 100 show mark for the year WITHOUT SXSW.
Too crazy!
But the absolute WORST news in a long time, it seems Dorian from The Long Blondes had a stroke in Summer - oh dear god!- and the Long Blondes have called it a day, crying all the way to my mp3 player to listen to Singles with tears in my eyes.

Long Blondes at Great Scott this summer

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Locksley and Wedding Present

I don't think I have ever gone to a gig before and then went and removed them from being a myspace friend. Locksley were fun when they supported Scissors (love you scissors) and seemed nice guys. Keeping an eye on them we followed them when they played supporting Rooney and then had a headlining tour which hit Cafe 939.
How can you suddenly pamper to 10-16 year olds? Pathetic- enough- no more Locksley.
Its not the fact they have teenage fans, its the schmaltz and the lack of sincerity. Its all too Disney and Hannah Montana, I just had a diabetes - suffering from excess sweetness moment.
Wedding Present, so tired at this gig, but it was a definitely gig you had to do. Enjoyed but only mildly.

Yeah Bearsuit!

So Bearsuit finally got a gig in Boston after trying forever. They didn't get into the US for SXSW for undisclosed Visa issues but Foxy Boxer is one amazingly good single.
This band is young, fun and so talented. I for one will be definitely there when they hit the all Asia Restaurant in Cambridge on Sunday. So Glad to finally see those guys.

Sunday, October 05, 2008

October Madness

Midway through a very intense October burst of shows. But then November and December are looking bleak so you have to do what you have to do.
Glasvegas canceled at Great Scott on Monday due to visa issues, me being me I started a myspace conversation which ended up with a guest list offer for Saturday in New york mercury lounge (sold out show) which we took them up on - Nice one boys!
Tuesday was Amy Macdonald, chosen because I wanted to figure her out. Pleasant and interesting Amy doesn't have the strongest voice (yes I am spoiled by women like Annie Lennox, Horse Macdonald (look it up and weep you hadn't heard of her before) and of course the wondrous Leila from Duke Spirit.). But when you throw in a cheap ticket price and the wonderful Great Scott (I LOVE this venue) it was a nice night.

Wednesday brought Evangelicals plus The Parenthetical Girls and Matt Mays who I had never heard of. Empty for PG but what a wonderful show they put on pure cabaret but lovable. Third time seeing Evangelicals, full of technical issues but there is something gut which I love about this band that I could never describe but only urge you to go with an open mind and fall in love.
Thursday and Friday was the Baltimore Round Robin experience, not our thing but had to go to experience, liked eyes night MUCH more than feet night but very glad to support music that is off kilter and different.
Saturday we drove down to New York sweating that we would actually be on the guest list. YES we were and sat for ages while the NY scenesters and drunkards decided to deign to come to the sold out show. Wild Light supported and were well, wild light, oh well. angela mcclusky was a secondary support and while fun I have heard better female scottish vocals - see above.
Glasvegas, now let me get hit by criticism, I think they need to gig some more and figure out how to put over their material. Of course the scenester crowd did kill any buzz. loved it anyway.
Would I have missed it- NO WAY!
Just about to go see Locksley tonight and Wedding Present tomorrow then Wire Wednesday and Delta Spirit friday oh well tons to do.......
As I said November sucks!

Thursday, September 11, 2008

The Wombats Boston 2008

Wow, last year there was 25 of us, this year there was a rowdy sold out crowd full of drunken college boys. The boys lapped up the energy and put on a great show, minor complaint (and I know it was because of equipment issues) no 'How to pack your bags' no circuit board city'. All the songs we love - accapella, kill the director Joy Division, Patricia, First Wedding and of course Backfire.
So happy to see folks picking up on them, though I still want to see them in small places.
I hurt because of the wild crowd (note being at the front with a stage at knee level with frat boys behind you is DANGEROUS) but cant stop beaming. Were you there? No? then you missed the best show in Boston this year.
Gilrs Boys and Marsupials which opened the show

Little Miss Pipedream from last night

Saturday, August 09, 2008

Interesting Gigs coming up

Thank goodness for the Canadian Virgin festival, it is bringing over UK acts leading to a sudden deluge of decent acts.
Forgive me for it seem like I have gone insane planning gigs. My most painful decision is that in all honesty I cant really skip work next week to go to see Sky Larkin in New York, oh why couldn't they play a Saturday?
BUTTTTTTTTTTTTT.We do get Does it Offend You, Yeah?, The Wombats, The Pigeon Detectives, Sons And Daughters, Laura Marling and Johnny Flynn, Stereophonics, Noah and The Whale, Glasvegas and last and by no means least - oh my God after years of waiting I actually get to see................
drum roll please......................
James! Despite what every American thinks the song we die to hear is Sit Down not Laid.
So something to look forward too.

Friday, August 01, 2008


YEAH! The SXSW 2009 website just opened. I know its only August but now I have SXSW 2009 to look forward to, my chance to see more small bands than any other time in the USA.
My mood is temporarily HAPPY, HAPPY, HAPPY!

Monday, July 28, 2008

Subways at The Paradise

WOW, I was tired, miserable, pissed off because work sucks and MGMT and Ting Tings had been fun but not that much fun.
Then came the Subways. Half Panto, half showmen/women, 100% performers.
Its not often you burst into a concert and dance and smile your way through the whole delightful thing. Having already heard the yet to be released album I loved even the songs which many folks didn't move to.
These guys write bright bouncy, hard rocking guitar, bass and rum rhythms to make your butt move and make your spirits soar.
Miserably attended so that half the Paradise was shut off the idiots who paid a fortune to see MGMT should have been there on Saturday to see what a real band can do.
Absolutely loved you guys.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

BBC harms the ability of british bands to be heard abroad

For the past four years I have been listening to British radio on the internet being British, or more accurately Scottish. This means rather than listening to US crap radio new crap and horribly regurgitated garbage I have listened to radio like Steve Lamacq, Huw Stephens and Vic Galloway. This means I hear interesting new music rather than dross.
This week the new BBC iplayer was fully loaded. They claim to have upgraded radio quality but this is only for UK residents. For folks listening to abroad they have downgraded the quality to 64kbps which sounds dreadful.
This listen again feature has lead me to hear new British bands and many others also find new music this way then go to see them when you travel abroad and buy the CDs as imports.
We also buy the CDs when they are released over here and crappy US radio will not play them due to not fitting into a defined format.
BBC has stabbed british bands in the back.
You should fight this it will hurt british band's ability to expand beyond British shores.

Saturday, July 05, 2008

Gigs in full

if anyone is interested all my gigs can be seen here, only 2007 and 2008 up so far

Sunday, June 29, 2008

Gigs for Jan thru June

Date Band Type Venue Location
1/3/2008 28 Degrees Taurus S Great Scott Boston
1/12/2008 White Williams H Middle East Upstairs Boston
1/25/2008 Bedouin Soundclash H Harper's Ferry Boston
2/2/2008 Plants and Animals S Johnny Brenda's Philadelphia
2/2/2008 The Spinto Band H Johnny Brenda's Philadelphia
2/2/2008 The Whigs S Johnny Brenda's Philadelphia
2/7/2008 Gene Loves Jezebel H Middle East Upstairs Boston
2/7/2008 Spear Of Destiny S Middle East Upstairs Boston
2/7/2008 The Virgins S BU Central Boston
2/7/2008 Ra Ra Riot H BU Central Boston
2/8/2008 No Age S The Paradise Boston
2/8/2008 Liars H The Paradise Boston
2/12/2008 Yeasayer S Great Scott Boston
2/12/2008 MGMT H Great Scott Boston
2/18/2008 Your Vegas S The Paradise Boston
2/18/2008 Switches S The Paradise Boston
2/18/2008 The Bravery H The Paradise Boston
2/19/2008 Your Vegas S The Paradise Boston
2/19/2008 Switches S The Paradise Boston
2/26/2008 Pela H TT The Bears Boston
3/5/2008 Exit Clov S Middle East Upstairs Boston
3/5/2008 Pretty & Nice S Middle East Upstairs Boston
3/5/2008 Wonderful Spells H Middle East Upstairs Boston
3/7/2008 School Of Language H TT The Bears Boston
3/8/2008 Lightspeed Champions H Union Pool New York
3/10/2008 The Pigeon Detectives H Great Scott Boston
3/11/2008 The Cribs H The Engine Room Houston
3/17/2008 The Wombats H The Annex New York
3/18/2008 Tilly and The Wall H The Rock N Roll Hotel Washing ton DC
3/19/2008 Ra Ra Riot S The Black Cat Washing ton DC
3/19/2008 The Cribs H The Black Cat Washing ton DC
3/20/2008 The Cribs H Music Hall of Williamsburg New York
3/21/2008 The Cribs H The Paradise Boston
3/22/2008 Ra Ra Riot S The North Star Philadelphia
3/22/2008 The Cribs H The North Star Philadelphia
3/23/2008 Frightened Rabbit S Johnny Brenda's Philadelphia
3/23/2008 Sons and Daughters H Johnny Brenda's Philadelphia
3/24/2008 Frightened Rabbit S Middle East Downstairs Cambridge
3/24/2008 Sons and Daughters H Middle East Downstairs Cambridge
4/2/2008 Bear Hands S Middle East Downstairs Cambridge
4/2/2008 Ambulance Ltd H Middle East Downstairs Cambridge
4/4/2008 The Spinto Band H TT The Bears Cambridge
4/5/2008 Carbon/Silicon H TT The Bears Cambridge
4/9/2008 Wonderful Spells S TT The Bears Cambridge
4/9/2008 The Duke Spirit H TT The Bears Cambridge
4/12/2008 Yeasayer S The Paradise Boston
4/12/2008 Man Man H The Paradise Boston
4/18/2008 White Denim S The Paradise Boston
4/18/2008 Tapes 'n Tapes H The Paradise Boston
4/24/2008 Tokyo Police Club H The Paradise Boston
4/24/2008 The Meligrove Band S The Paradise Boston
4/25/2008 Ra Ra Riot H Middle East Downstairs Boston
4/25/2008 The Little Ones S Middle East Downstairs Boston
4/26/2008 Tokyo Police Club H Pearl Street NightClub Northhampton
4/30/2008 Secret Machines H Great Scott Boston
5/1/2008 South H Great Scott Boston
5/6/2008 Foals H Middle East Downstairs Boston
5/8/2008 The Teenagers H The Paradise Boston
5/8/2008 Team Robespierre S The Paradise Boston
5/12/2008 Mobius Band S The Paradise Boston
5/12/2008 Black Kids S The Paradise Boston
5/12/2008 Cut Copy H The Paradise Boston
5/13/2008 British Sea Power H The Paradise Boston
5/19/2008 The Long Blondes H Great Scott Boston
5/21/2008 Los Campesinos! H The Paradise Boston
5/22/2008 Air Traffic H TT The Bears Cambridge
5/24/2008 Age Rings S Middle East Upstairs Cambridge
5/24/2008 The Mary Onettes H Middle East Upstairs Cambridge
5/25/2008 The Magic S Middle East Downstairs Cambridge
5/25/2008 Islands H Middle East Downstairs Cambridge
5/26/2008 Frightened Rabbit H Great Scott Boston
6/1/2008 Be Your Own Pet S The Paradise Boston
6/1/2008 The Virgins S The Paradise Boston
6/1/2008 Switches S The Paradise Boston
6/1/2008 She Wants Revenge H The Paradise Boston
6/3/2008 Jukebox the Ghost S The Blender Theatre @ Gramercy New York
6/3/2008 The Wombats H The Blender Theatre @ Gramercy New York
6/5/2008 The Breeders H The Paradise Boston
6/7/2008 Pela H Middle East Upstairs Cambridge
6/8/2008 Lightspeed Champions H Great Scott Boston
6/9/2008 These New Puritans H Great Scott Boston
6/11/2008 The Fratellis H The Paradise Boston
6/11/2008 The Airborne Toxic Event S The Paradise Boston
6/14/2008 Wonderful Spells S Great Scott Boston
6/14/2008 O'Death H Great Scott Boston
6/17/2008 Locksley S Middle East Downstairs Cambridge
6/17/2008 Rooney H Middle East Downstairs Cambridge
6/19/2008 Anni Rossi S Great Scott Boston
6/19/2008 The Ting Tings H Great Scott Boston
6/25/2008 Delta Spirit H Middle East Upstairs Cambridge
6/26/2008 Aberdeen City The Paradise Boston

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Boston gets exciting

At the start of the month foals knocked my socks off at The Middle East Downstairs. I am just astonished how tight these guys are and how danceable their music is.
Worth so much more than ticket price.

Then The Long Blondes came to town, channeling a sound reminiscent of past times with a new indie feel I think you are either smitten or not. I fell in love over three years ago after hearing 'Christmas is canceled' and Autonomy boy. I waited with baited breath until they came last year and my only regret was when they stopped. This May they came to town to play Century plus old favorites. I loved chatting to them before (so down to earth and friendly) and adored the songs even more - wow listening to Autonomy boy.
Kate is so petite and gorgeous I should hate her if I wasn't totally awed.

British Sea Power took a chance and gave us another gig despite Boston's boorishness at the last concert. something changed and they charged through an amazing and prolonged set which it is obvious they enjoyed tremendously almost as much as the audience.
Los Campesinos! romped through almost everything (where was 'It started with a Mixx'?) providing a great background for a dance party.
Air traffic came to town and treated the sparse crowd to most of Fractured life and two new songs. They did ask us to bring all our friends next time.
Frightened Rabbit came to town and the scenesters jumped on the bandwagon crowding Great Scott for a rousing rendition of most songs off the Midnight Organ Fight.
A rather disturbing instance did occur when we realize that no matter how much you love the music screaming emotive cries just makes you sound deranged- shudder.

And there's more.........
Sunday has Switches and Be Your Own Pet playing, again Switches have proved to be very sweet approachable guys who play fun (though not serious music).
Tuesday has us on a road trip to see The Wombats in NY, too crazy (us or them?).
Thursday is The Breeders and we all turn into Kim Deal fans and show our age.
Saturday give us the chance to check Pela's Billy hasn't injured himself yet.
Sunday has Dev of Lightspeed Champion hitting Great Scott.
Monday, blow off the Kooks and go see These New Puritans instead- much better.

There is more but that, is another post

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

The state of Live music

I have been going to a lot of concerts recently. Even the bad ones are worthwhile and interesting BUT note the venues I go to - TT's, Great Scott, Middle East and the Paradise. Is it really a concert when you go to a huge arena and watch the band on stage only through the video screens they provide. why don't you just stay at home and watch the DVD.
Last night we were at The Paradise seeing Mobius Band, Black Kids and Cut Copy. None of these bands are on my top 50 but they are so much more than watching a band on a video screen. Call me crazy but dodging the spit, mis-aimed plectrums, spilled water bottles has to be better than that.
The Agganis Arena is a monstrosity, 6K capacity with parking lots provided by BU. But isn't that negated when they extort $25 for parking, $25 only $1 less than we paid for our two tickets last night. No wonder 3000 cars flood the area looking for on street parking. Then a large proportion of those 6000 crowd into every bar or restaurant in a half mile radius. So last night we arrive as normal (going to The Paradise about once very two to three weeks all year) and find no place to relax.
If you are going to the Agganis you are seeing a stale clinical removed performance, that is not live music so stop annoying those of us who do support live music.

Friday, April 18, 2008

Mumm-Ra call it a day

On the 17th of March Mumm-Ra announced they are splitting up and calling it a day. A Favorite on the board I frequent I started to listen to this band about 18 months ago. We saw them at SXSW 2007 both at the NME party and at their official showcase. This is a band I took to my heart and loved. We also bumped into Noo at the Pigeon Detectives gig, having a hilarious conversation where he swore that both computers and Radio 1 had ruined his life, in a drunken haze of course, hilarious when you consider he uses that as a lyric.
We also had the chance to see them at The Great Escape 2007 again loving every second. Their album which came out at the same time was amazing and the extra demo tracks astoundingly good.
But I want to know who will have custody of Matthew The Duck?
Why this music languishes undiscovered while crap from reality shows makes big money astounds and saddens me.
Mumm-Ra, Tommy B, Noo and Matthew The Duck I will miss you more than i thought possible.
Mumm-Ra - Starlight

Friday, April 11, 2008

Back to the 80s

The Regeneration tour has just been announced. I think despite the fact it is completely dated and just embarrassing I will end up going. Yes the bands have no cred but Dare and The Lexicon Of Love are still amazing albums even now.

The Human League Open Your Heart

ABC The Look Of Love

A Flock Of Seagulls Wishing (If I Had A Photograph Of You)

Belinda Carlisle Heaven Is A Place On Earth

Tuesday, April 08, 2008

Bands calling it a day

I found the news that Milburn called it a day extremely sad.
As far as I know Milburn never made it to the US, I know they never made it to SXSW or Boston. A down to earth bunch of guys from Sheffield they made infectious indie pop that could sink into your brain and refuse to move.
Two albums that were never truly appreciated but remain stuck on play in my playlist.
Milburn - Cheshire Cat Smile

This came shortly after the rumour that Battle called it a day. Yes it is a a 'rumour' but the truth seems so very transparent behind it. Jason, I eagerly await your solo album.
I don't think I will ever stop appreciating the pop brilliance of Tendency, whose hooks make my heart soar and my feet twitch. Tim and Toby, thank you for signing this band and bringing them over to SXSW so we could see them. Double thanks for helping us get in to the Great Escape gig for our last ever chance to see them perform.
Battle - Tendency

Carbon/silicon TT The Bears April 5th 2008

A sleeper in regards ticket sales, by the time of the gig everyone knew what was happening and were hyped.
The support band Scarce put on a decent show for an audience who tolerated them, though they were certainly a treat compared to some recent support bands i Have suffered.
After a long time of the sound guy/guitar tech fussing on stage the stage finally passed muster and Carbon/Silicon appeared - through a back door rather than the normal back room.
Mick Jones and Tony James had a great time, Mick just kept grinning, it was infectious. These were two guys back where they wanted to be, playing wonderful guitars to a malleable audience in a small intimate club. They just seemed so happy to be up there jamming. They are both extremely old now, balding and wearing suits and loafers rather tan punk outfits but just a wonderful thing to see.
I thought I was attuned to the British accent but lost a lot of what Mick said between songs but he did try to converse with the audience.
Both 'What the F*ck' and Why Do Men Fight the last two songs turned into two long fun fests. Truly a gig you were happy to be at.

Monday, March 17, 2008

SXSW recap

59 performances
49 bands

new band 33
old (already seen) band 16

favorites later

Sunday, March 16, 2008

SXSW Saturday 15th

the end - boo hoo
Fuck buttons Dell lounge Volume
The whigs
Tokyo police club
John smith
the whip
the rascals
the wombats
the indelicates
joe lean and the jing jang jong
the constantines
look see proof
the answering machine

Saturday, March 15, 2008

fri sxsw

born ruffians
shout out louds
los campesinos!
pigeon detectives
the wombats
make model
sons and daughters
frightened rabbit
make model
laura marling
the whip
scouting for girls

Friday, March 14, 2008

sxsw thursday

noon britisg bbq at brush square
mc riz
jack somebody - songwriter
the rascals
the ting tings
joe lean and teh jing jang jong
look see proof
johnny flynn
scissors for lefty
the rascals
the voom blooms
our lunar activities
make model
johnny flynn
i was a cub scout
the pan I am

my feet are`SO tired

Thursday, March 13, 2008


Brazos red eyed fly
The Explorer's Club red eyed fly
evangelicals emo outside
these new puritans emo outside
Chikita Violenta emos annex
jason collett emos annex
Chikita Violenta fader
does it offend you yeah fader
the thirst vice
the red romance volume
pinstripe bd rileys
the law smokehouse
johnny foreigner dirty dog bar
the duke spirit buffalo billiards

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Liars, No Age at The Paradise Feb 8, 2008

I have been dragging my heels about writing up this gig because I feel I went to see a totally different set of two bands than all the other reviews that popped up.
No Age, one drummer one guitarist, started interesting but degenerated in mindless sameness. They created background music that failed to keep my attention and despite the buzz I didn't see anyone going crazy with musical delirium in the audience.
Liars again buzz, buzz. They have some interesting songs but again i found my mind wandering in boredom. The singer is freakishly tall and his back injury must be very painful when you look at his on stage behavior. As he stood you could see the stance of a person expecting large jolts of pain to arrive.
It was interesting and enjoyable but I will not be going to see either Liars or No Age again.

Saturday, February 16, 2008

The Breeders

Perhaps it just my generation but to me The Breeders are a band beyond compare. We saw them play the Paradise it must be over ten years ago and I still remember the rock 'Royalty' of Boston milling around. Last Splash is also one of the most amazing albums chock full of tight energizing bouncy riffs that amaze.
Today at 12:00 tickets went on sale for The Breeders at The Paradise, my feeling was this was one show where I needed to endure the Ticketmaster fleecing. Now almost 6 hours later there are still tickets available- huh?
Justice sells out in minutes and Breeders don't? I just don't understand. But I swear this shwo will sell out and could have many times over. I will just wait for June.

Friday, February 08, 2008

SXSW bands

So as SXSW approaches I want to mention some bands I am learning about and already love.
I will try to punctuate this with youtube videos if possible.

Starting now
The Whip
I know little about them apart from the fact they trash their instruments and are supposed to be great live.
listen to their track Sister Siam

The Law- recommended to me by a message board I visit, this track seems catchy and may be worth investigating Milk and Honey

I was a Cub Scout
I have been listening to this band since Lammo played them - Great band, great album!
I am making this band a priority to see
Pink Squares

Los Campesinos!
they eventually came to Boston in December and played a great show.
Love them and if the schedule allows will definitely see this band.
International TweeXcore Underground

The Pan I Am
confused? Don't be if you liked Larrikin Love here is Ed Larrikin's new project.

The Dykeenies
Another talented new Scottish band, we saw them last year at The Great Escape, nice live act.
Clean Up Your Eyes

The Duke Spirit
Hey guys, why are you not coming to Boston? We miss you!
amazing new album out, they have been away too long
The Duke Spirit - Lassoo

Sons and Daughters
From Glasgow, primal going to some scottish wild impulse for me, I love these guys, though I would prefer more male vocal like the last album
Sons And Daughters - 'Darling'

The Wombats

Well seeing I am on their DVD from SXSW - 'Dancing my ass off' it should be no secret that I love this band
The SXSW documentary with my appearance right at the end.

The Wombats Moving to New York

Wow - New doesnt have to compete with old

So on paper, i had a terrible conflict last night. Ra Ra Riot, bright newcomers at BU Vs Spear Of Destiny at The Middle East Upstairs.
But sometimes things just fall into place.
We started the night by getting our tickets for The Pigeon Detectives who play Great Scott march 10th. Be there or look really stupid and deaf.
Listen to a great song by them right now!
I'm not Sorry

Then after eating we managed to talk our way into the student only gig at BU Central.
The Virgins had decent music, decent beat but I took a real dislike to the lead singer. No charisma, no stage presence and no voice.
Had a talk to Ra Ra Riot to find they are supporting The Cribs in March except for Boston and NY, so we will see them in Houston, DC and Philly!
We only stayed for 20 minutes of Ra Ra Riot but during that time they played two new songs.
I just love to dance to this band so much.
So we ran out and drove across to the Middle East. Spear Of Destiny was on stage but only one song in. Then the fun started, Spear Of Destiny do great songs, Brandon is a god on the guitar and his voice is still amazing. We only got 35 minutes but we got Liberator, The Wheel, Rainmaker and Westworld amongst the others. Talk about bliss, tight beautiful numbers I just wished he had played for hours, I was totally entranced.
Afterwards he was generous to talk to me for a bit while I raved about how much I had enjoyed his show. I had always heard about the angry eddgy man, not last night, he was friendly and sweet. Of course the peck on my cheek may have slightly turned my head.
So total joyous music from two completely different times but both so good.

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

From New to Old or is it New Vs Old

I like to think I listen to new music and embrace it, ie Ra Ra Riot and Foals but deep in my heart I have part of me which has a soft spot for music I listened to a while ago.
Why this post?
Two reasons Carbon/Silicon (dear god yet another HORRIBLE name to tag with) appear, comprising of Mick Jones (anyone from The Clash is a God) and Tony James (forgive him for SSS because of Generation X). They are starting to emerge and will play Boston in a tiny club (TT the Bears) on April 5th.
But hiding in really tiny print behind Gene Loves Jezebel is SPEAR OF DESTINY. I am just perpetually in a swoon about Kirk Brandon's voice and stage presence. And he plays Middle East Upstairs on Thursday the 7th, a night when there are two great shows also on (Ra Ra Riot and 28 Degrees Taurus).
So torn about this and so feeling so longing for the wonder of the SOD shows we used to go to. Can he still create a show to rock your ass off, will his voice be a little rocky or amazing? In my world he is a legend and a hero but that is my background.

Monday, February 04, 2008

New and upcoming

Having complained about January, can I say the new music that is arriving day by day is outstanding. I am currently listening to the excellent Sons And Daughter's album The Gift, Duke Spirit's Neptune and Foals Antidotes to mention a few. I am also trying to figure exactly what I think about Lightspeed Champion.
Its also funny to try and gauge how excellent British bands will be received here.
Will the Pigeon Detectives have an audience of 30 like The Wombats did or pack the heck out of Great Scott like Editors and Klaxons did? Forget idiots like the Globe who jump on bandwagons years after they are gone and look to the new.
Talking about hype I go see MGMT and Yeasayer next week but I will try not to hold the hype against them and I know I love MGMT live as we were there for their first gig here.
so the message here - listen to Sons and Daughters (Middle East March 24th), Glasvegas (Paradise March 24th), Lightspeed Champion, Foals and Pigeon Detectives and please do not listen to spice girls or New Kids On The Block!

Sunday, February 03, 2008

A trip to Philly

December and January are surely the cruelest months. so few bands arrive in Boston I feel like Punxsutawney Phil hibernating and refusing to come out.
In such a mood my RSS feeder told me The Spinto band was playing Philly on a weekend in one of my favorite venues - Johnny Brenda's. My music drought convinced me that it wasn't such a long trip and we booked the tickets and the hotel.
If you go to Philadelphia and want to see a show I heartily recommend Johnny Brenda's, it is much like Great Scott but BETTER as it serves great food, wonderful different micro brews and the sound system has been revamped and is AMAZING, oh and the venue is small and intimate.
Plants and Animals, a threesome from Toronto were a very nice surprise. They started quietly but ended up making a glorious noise. It was strange to see the guitar and bass roles swapping throughout the set.
The Whigs started setting up and a small point I hadn't been aware of started to be rather funny and pointed. I had decided to wear my MGMT t-shirt from last November before th Net buzz makes it just too pathetic. What I didn't realize was the whigs had recently lost their bass player as he went to join MGMT and that the two bands are best buddies! Lets just say each of the three members came up and told me all about this seeing I was wearing the shirt, maybe I am just trivial but I found this amusing!
So they started playing and they made their album Mission Control a lot more fun than i found it on CD. And also after finding the bass guitar swapping so amusing in Plants and animals then The Whigs went and started to do the same. Probably because of their lost bass player. I am not certain I would go out of my way to see them again BUT I would certainly NOT go out of my way NOT to see them which considering some support bands is a very good thing.
So The Spinto Band started to set up, teh good thing about being at the front is the chance to throw questions their way.
The new album is ready and just waiting for some one to release it.
They are going to SXSW.
Very nice set 15 songs including new songs. Two songs for encore including a very tongue in cheek cover of Tiffany's I think we're alone now.
This band sweep in under my defenses, not pretty not trendy but fun, energetic and lacking pretenses. Support real music.

Monday, January 28, 2008

Bedouin Soundclash Harpers Ferry Jan 2008

A mix of a night. We arrived before the place got too busy the front area was still unfilled. Beat Union turned out to be a good clash based punkish band from London, Fun and definitely a decent support band. Westbound Train, tres retro and too cliche to appeal to me. Totally understood why folks were going crazy. There were some wrecked young brats next to us, the girls had got past the carding and were drinking incessantly, the guys hadn't and had x's on their hand. One guy blatantly sat physically on me waiting for Bedouin. Him and his mate continued being so close it was uncomfortable. Yes I could have moved away from the stage but why should I move away because of immature assholes?
Bedouin the same clash based Police derivatives. does it seem crazy to say at times I just closed my eyes and lost myself in the beat of the music. That was the best, the other times they lost the tempo. As the encore started I must admit I lost my patience and shoved back at the losers who were sitting physically on top of me in just plain rudeness, the guy exploded and spent the next five minutes yelling at me, just wouldn't stop, didn't even think of where this had started I wasn't even where I had started having moved slightly over. Perhaps too old I expect not to be physically moved upon then yelled at. Asshole! and as a Scot I just refuse to be intimidated which as a female at 5'4 doesn't bode well and the hubby is too wimpish to stand up for my aggressive tartan ways.
I do love Bedouin , I think they are better live than on CD but still would return to see them again. Boy do people ever reinforce my generic hatred of the human race.

Sunday, January 13, 2008

White Wiliams Middle East Upstairs Jan 2008

Gigs are lean on the ground at teh moment. Hardly anything going on so we went to White Williams at the middle east upstairs.
Brightside opened, enthusiastic but seemed to be channeling 90's goth certainly not my type of music. male band female front.
Ecstatic Sunshine, two guys one manic guitar and one keyboard frenetic and long tracks - electronics again not bad but not superlative.
White Williams, Gauche and bad on audience interaction, green as the grass. But when the music starts it has a lot going for it. I would like to see how he is at the end of the 30 dates.
Worth keeping an eye out for.