Saturday, April 18, 2015

The Week In Shows: 4/20-4/26

A postcard-perfect Saturday morning seems as good a time as any to plot ones weekly live music schedule, I think. Let's take a look at what's happening in the greater DC metro this week, shall we? Hot diggity!

Well, it's time to really enjoy the couple weeks of DC's official spring. The cherry blossoms are hitting the road, which means our summer should start any day now. While we wait for the hotness to arrive, make sure you get out and take in the pretty. Here's some picks for the next few days. And remember, y'all, each week I'll be picking one show that is my seriously, go to this recommended show of the week. And here we go, a look at some recommended shows for the coming week.


MONDAY, 4/20/15

-Manic Street Preachers + U. S. Royalty (9:30 Club) (Extra Recommended!)

TUESDAY, 4/21/15

-Elvis Perkins (6th & I)

WEDNESDAY, 4/22/15

-Trampled by Turtles + Web of Sunsets (9:30 Club - SOLD OUT)
-Faded Giant + Matt Townsend & The Wonder of The World + Electric Grandmother (Velvet Lounge)

THURSDAY, 4/23/15

-Marian Hill + Furniteur (DC9 - SOLD OUT)

FRIDAY, 4/24/15

-Justin Jones & The B-Sides + Susto + Down Dexter (Rock & Roll Hotel)
-They Might Be Giants (9:30 Club - SOLD OUT)
-Dot Dash + Jake Starr & The Delicious Fullness + The Combs (Comet Ping Pong)

SATURDAY, 4/25/15

-Tei Shi + Pleasure Curses + Champagne Fever (DC9)
-Darlingside + Bombadil (IOTA)
-Beech Creeps + Heavy Breathing (Capital Fringe)
-Smallpools + Grizfolk + Vinyl Theatre (U Street Music Hall)
-Kingman Island Bluegrass & Folk Festival (Kingman Island)

SUNDAY, 4/26/15

-Low Cut Connie + Great Cities + Thee Lexington Arrows (Comet Ping Pong)
-The NRIs + The Working Effective (Black Cat)
-The Jet Age + Cliffs + Sansyou (Velvet Lounge)



[posted 4.18.15]

Saturday, April 11, 2015

Video Of The Day #41: Broken Water

There’s a bunch of videos out there. Some of them are good. Some of them are a cut above. I like to think my picks for Video Of The Day are a cut (or two) above.

I am so in favor of a new Broken Water video, y'all. Heck yes. Here we have the muddy, unrelenting churn of "Wasted" taken to the great outdoors, with sun-dappled shots of nature (and a houseboat!) cut and pasted with some band action. It's got a rough feel, which works just fine with the song. At just over two minutes, you'll want to watch it a few times to really get your fill.








[posted 4.11.15]

The Fashionably Late Top 60 of 2014 #40: Native America

2014 was quite a year. Not the best of years, on a personal level, but a rather good year from a music standpoint. Having given a listen to record after record after record from the year that was, I’ve pulled together a list of favorites, finding it next to impossible to whittle the list down any further beyond 60 (I tried). In this group of 60 you’ll find records from old, faithful friends, upstart newcomers, and even a headscratcher or two. You’ll probably see some records that were a Big Deal not on this list. I either didn’t bite or didn’t buy the hype. I’m pleased as punch with this list, and I hope you’ll come across something that might have otherwise passed you by. And so, without further ado, my favorite records of 2014.

WHO: Native America

WHAT: Grown Up Wrong

WHEN: November 2014

WHERE: Inflated Records

WHY: Native America has been on my radar for a little while now, and I was stoked to finally hear their latest record, Grown Up Wrong. Full of fuzzy jangling, scuzzy riffs, and a little sassy shimmying, Grown Up Wrong does indeed prove that this Big Easy band has grown up just fine. This collection of songs feels like it's more 60s pop-based than earlier efforts, though they've still got plenty of snarky ne'er-do-well in there.     

My jams: "Rabo," "Dance With Me," "Naturally Lazy," "Old Friends," "Digital Lobotomy," "All About You," "Well Understood," "Jenny" 






[posted 4.11.15]

The Fashionably Late Top 60 of 2014 #41: Merchandise

2014 was quite a year. Not the best of years, on a personal level, but a rather good year from a music standpoint. Having given a listen to record after record after record from the year that was, I’ve pulled together a list of favorites, finding it next to impossible to whittle the list down any further beyond 60 (I tried). In this group of 60 you’ll find records from old, faithful friends, upstart newcomers, and even a headscratcher or two. You’ll probably see some records that were a Big Deal not on this list. I either didn’t bite or didn’t buy the hype. I’m pleased as punch with this list, and I hope you’ll come across something that might have otherwise passed you by. And so, without further ado, my favorite records of 2014.

WHO: Merchandise

WHAT: After The End

WHEN: August 2014

WHERE: 4AD

WHY: It might be hard to categorize Merchandise, but it's damned near impossible not to love them. Stubbornly anti-shoehorning, the Tampa outfit still sounds like a trip down an English musical memory lane while at the same time turning their defiant attitude into an album of majestic, sprawling songs. With one of the best voices around, as well. After The End isn't the record I had been expecting from Merchandise, and that's a great thing indeed.  

My jams: "Enemy," "True Monument," "Green Lady," "Telephone," "Little Killer," "After The End," "Exile and Ego"








[posted 4.11.15]

The Fashionably Late Top 60 of 2014 #42: Literature

2014 was quite a year. Not the best of years, on a personal level, but a rather good year from a music standpoint. Having given a listen to record after record after record from the year that was, I’ve pulled together a list of favorites, finding it next to impossible to whittle the list down any further beyond 60 (I tried). In this group of 60 you’ll find records from old, faithful friends, upstart newcomers, and even a headscratcher or two. You’ll probably see some records that were a Big Deal not on this list. I either didn’t bite or didn’t buy the hype. I’m pleased as punch with this list, and I hope you’ll come across something that might have otherwise passed you by. And so, without further ado, my favorite records of 2014.

WHO: Literature

WHAT: Chorus

WHEN: August 2014

WHERE: Slumberland

WHY: Effervescent, gorgeously fizzy, clever dream pop from Philly? Good gosh almighty, yes! Literature keeps it warm and fuzzy on Chorus, deftly crafting icy cool, enchanting pop gems ever so studiously. Short and sweet, the songs on Chorus hit it out of the park. Easily mistaken for vintage 80s Brits (or perhaps Kiwis), Literature is well worth curling up with.

My jams: “The Girl, The Gold Watch, and Everything," "The English Softhearts," "Blasé," "Court/Date," "Chorus," "Jimmy," "Dance Shoes," "Kites"







[posted 4.11.15]

The Week In Shows: 4/13-4/19

A ridiculously gorgeous Saturday morning that makes it finally feel like spring seems as good a time as any to plot ones weekly live music schedule, I think. Let's take a look at what's happening in the greater DC metro this week, shall we? Hot diggity!

Y'all, I do believe spring might have sprung. If you're in the DC metro, be sure you enjoy our brief spring, as those balmy temps will be here all too soon. But in the meantime, there's flora flowering and good shows to be seen. Here's some picks for the next few days. And remember, y'all, each week I'll be picking one show that is my seriously, go to this recommended show of the week. And here we go, a look at some recommended shows for the coming week.


MONDAY, 4/13/15

-Inter Arma + Yautja + Drugs of Faith (DC9)

TUESDAY, 4/14/15

-Sick of Sarah + The Last Year (Black Cat)
-Lee Bains III & The Glory Fires + Wanted Man + Father's Honor (DC9)

WEDNESDAY, 4/15/15

-Brokeback + Chris Brokaw + Warm Sun (Comet Ping Pong)

THURSDAY, 4/16/15

-Priests + Protomartyr + The Gotobeds (U Street Music Hall) (Extra Recommended!)
-Walk The Moon + The Griswolds (9:30 Club - SOLD OUT)
-Howlin' Rain (Black Cat)

FRIDAY, 4/17/15

-Walk The Moon + The Griswolds (9:30 Club - SOLD OUT)

SATURDAY, 4/18/15

-Blitzen Trapper + Spirit Family Reunion (Black Cat)

SUNDAY, 4/19/15

-Doldrums + Moon King (DC9)


[posted 4.11.15]

Saturday, April 4, 2015

Remix Fix: CHAMPS/Creange

In theory I like the idea of the remix: taking someone else's song and tweaking it the way you want it done. It's a great means for completely redoing something, and for reinterpretation. Sometimes remixes go awry, and sometimes they're better than the original. Remix Fix is all about the happy medium when a remix totally nails it and makes a song that much better.

I've been big into CHAMPS lately, so when an email from Creange floated my way with his remix of their dreamy "Running," my interest was piqued. While an unofficial remix, in my opinion it's more than good enough to get the official nod from CHAMPS. 

In the words of Creange; "This remix is an authentic and poetic invitation to travel far far way from any daily routine. I worked out lively beats and toms as well as a fresh and soothing lead. Get ready for some ethereal positiveness." Creange's beats are lively indeed, adding a light, delightfully playful tropical texture to the already-great song. Many thumbs up.
   




[posted 4.4.15]

Crossing The Pond #32: Acting Strange

I've been feeling pretty homesick for Glasgow lately, so it felt like the right time to bring a new Glaswegian duo to your attention. Acting Strange, the musical pairing of Scott Stevenson and Ali Greig, is a pretty new kid on the block, but I'm liking what I'm hearing.

The band's first single is "Dreaming Away," an idyllically rattling number that hints at some of their favorites (early, poppy Beatles crossed with the Lou Reed-led jangle of the Velvets with a touch of "Ferry 'Cross the Mersey"-vintage Gerry & The Pacemakers). Sweet, to be sure, but also delightfully glum. Equally perfect for those gray, gloomy days and sunshine superman days. I'm definitely intrigued.      






[posted 4.4.15]

The Week In Shows: 4/6-4/12

A Saturday morning tucked amidst the mountains of Harrisonburg seems as good a time as any to plot ones weekly live music schedule, I think. Let's take a look at what's happening in the greater DC metro this week, shall we? Hot diggity!

I'd almost forgotten what spring felt like, and then I flew home and had an allergic reminder. Finally, though, the temperature warrants going out and about, just in time for the killer shows to start rolling in on a regular basis. Here's some picks for the next few days. And remember, y'all, each week I'll be picking one show that is my seriously, go to this recommended show of the week. And here we go, a look at some recommended shows for the coming week.


MONDAY, 4/6/15

-Young Buffalo + Polyon (Black Cat)
-Big Ups + Witch Coast + The Black Sparks (Comet Ping Pong)

TUESDAY, 4/7/15

-Matthew E. White + Wilsen (Rock & Roll Hotel)
-Waxahatchee + The Goodbye Party + Nox (Black Cat)
-Jose Gonzalez + Olof Arnalds (9:30 Club - SOLD OUT)

WEDNESDAY, 4/8/15

-Quilt (Kennedy Center Millennium Stage)
-Diarrhea Planet + Left & Right + Loud Boyz (Black Cat)
-The Mountain Goats + Ides of Gemini (9:30 Club - SOLD OUT)

THURSDAY, 4/9/15

-Alex Winston + The Walking Sticks + Louis Weeks (U Street Music Hall)

FRIDAY, 4/10/15

-Diamond Rugs + New Madrid + Justin Collins (Black Cat) (Extra Recommended!)
-William Elliott Whitmore + Esme Patterson (Rock & Roll Hotel)
-Whirr + Adventures (DC9)
-Shark Week + The Mystery Lights + Baby Bry Bry & The Apologists (Paper Haus)

SATURDAY, 4/11/15

-Dan Deacon + Prince Rama + Ben O'Brien (9:30 Club - Late Show)
-The Last Bison + Neulore (U Street Music Hall)
-Elikeh and The Sol Power All-Stars (Rock & Roll Hotel)
-The Ting-Tings + Kaneholler (9:30 Club)
-Jon Spencer Blues Explosion + Daddy Long Legs (Black Cat)

SUNDAY, 4/12/15

-Young Fathers + Mas Ysa (Rock & Roll Hotel)


[posted 4.4.15]

From The Library: Apathy For The Devil by Nick Kent

There are music writers, and there are music writers. 

Nick Kent is one of the absolute legends of music scribedom, and has lived a fast-lane life worthy of memoir-ization. In Apathy For The Devil, Kent lets it all hang out, sharing the good, the bad, and the ugly of his music-writing life. And there's plenty of all of the above to take in.

Nick Kent wrote primarily during one of rock's most interesting eras - the 1970s, and the chapters in Apathy For The Devil each cover a year in that decadent decade. His duties with the NME had him tagging along with all the big guns of the day, and many of his tales involve one of my favorites, those rascally Rolling Stones ("The Rolling Stones didn't have foreheads. Just hair, big lips, and a collective aura of rampaging insolence."). 

As is the case with many of us writers, Kent was a huge fan of the bands he wrote about, as well as actually doing the occasional musician thing. And as is the case with many of those rock stars he wrote about, Kent didn't escape the darker underbelly of what sometimes comes along with being in a band. That he honestly and openly relays his struggles with drugs makes me think him quite brave, and his self-deprecation for those, and other, transgressions helps to both lighten the mood and offer himself up as an inadvertent cautionary tale. 

Through it all, Kent charms. Page after page begs to be turned, and turned quickly. His tone is just perfect, and his comments are occasionally quite cheeky. His (numerous) exploits must be read to be believed, and Apathy For The Devil is probably especially interesting to those of us who are on the writerly side of the music scene. Thankfully, Nick Kent came out of those days in one piece (relatively). He says it best; "Once upon a time I was just another dead fop walking. But I changed ranks along the way and now I am a soldier of love." 

Highly recommended reading. 


[posted 4.4.15]   

Friday, April 3, 2015

Video Of The Day #40: Table Scraps

There’s a bunch of videos out there. Some of them are good. Some of them are a cut above. I like to think my picks for Video Of The Day are a cut (or two) above.

From the Midlands of England comes Table Scraps, a boy-girl twosome packing one heck of a searing aural punch. "Electricity" crackles with raw grit, grime, and scuzz, and the video for the clip is right on the money, capturing the band in tight live shots and highlighting the aggressive noise of the song. A mighty fine mess indeed, y'all. 









[posted 4.3.15]

Monday, March 30, 2015

The Week In Shows: 3/30-4/5

A beautiful, perfectly springlike day in downtown Salt Lake City seems as good a time as any to plot ones weekly live music schedule, I think. Let's take a look at what's happening in the greater DC metro this week, shall we? Hot diggity!

Today is my last day in the wild, mountainous west of the Mountain Time Zone, and I'll soon be back to the greater DC metro. As the weather (finally) gets warmer at home, the good shows will keep on coming. I'm heading out to Macrock this weekend, so y'all might want to consider a drive to Harrisonburg for some fun. Remember, y'all, each week I'll be picking one show that is my seriously, go to this recommended show of the week. And here we go, a look at some recommended shows for the coming week.


MONDAY, 3/30/15

-Twin Shadow + Lolawolf (Black Cat)
-Oh So Peligroso + Love Axe + Shining Blade Theory (Velvet Lounge)

WEDNESDAY, 4/1/15

-Laughing Man + Anthony Pirog + Crown Larks + Dave Klinger (Paper Haus - 4th anniversary)

THURSDAY, 4/2/15

-Liturgy + Sannhet + Horse Lords (DC9)
-Single Mothers + Dirty Nil (Black Cat)
-Coup Sauvage & The Snips + Pleasure Curses + Cat Jack (MLK Library)
-Reptar + Breathers + Sun Club (U Street Music Hall)

FRIDAY, 4/3/15

-Damien Rice (Lincoln Theatre - SOLD OUT)
-MACROCK (Harrisonburg, VA) (Extra Recommended!)

SATURDAY, 4/4/15

-A Celebration of Muddy Waters' 100th Birthday (The Hamilton)
-MACROCK (Harrisonburg, VA) (Extra Recommended!)




[posted 3.30.15]

Monday, March 23, 2015

The Week In Shows: 3/24-3/29

A freezing cold Monday evening in the greater Toledo area seems as good a time as any to plot ones weekly live music schedule, I think. Let's take a look at what's happening in the greater DC metro this week, shall we? Hot diggity!

Yours truly is on a rambling roadtrip this week, so I won't be able to attend any of the local shows. But there's some doozies! Remember, y'all, each week I'll be picking one show that is my seriously, go to this recommended show of the week. This week, there happens to be not one but TWO super extra recommended shows. Go to both. And here we go, a look at some recommended shows for the coming week.


TUESDAY, 3/24/15

-Shakey Graves + Nikki Lane (9:30 Club - SOLD OUT)

WEDNESDAY, 3/25/15

-Swervedriver + Gateway Drugs (Rock & Roll Hotel) (Extra Recommended!)
-Dirt City + Big Black Wolves + Motorcade (Velvet Lounge)

THURSDAY, 3/26/15

-Tigerman Whoa + These Wild Plains + The Dirty Bangs (DC9)

FRIDAY, 3/27/15

-The Weight (The Hamilton)
-Big Data + On & On + Chappo (Black Cat)
-The Districts + Pine Barons + Shark Week (Rock & Roll Hotel)

SATURDAY, 3/28/15

-Father John Misty + King Tuff (9:30 Club - SOLD OUT) (Extra Recommended!)

SUNDAY, 3/29/15

-Years & Years (U Street Music Hall)
-Torche + Wrong + Jeff Carey + Black Clouds (DC9)


[posted 3.23.15]

Saturday, March 21, 2015

Video Of The Day #39: Saint Agnes

There’s a bunch of videos out there. Some of them are good. Some of them are a cut above. I like to think my picks for Video Of The Day are a cut (or two) above.

We all know covers can be a slippery slope. Saint Agnes, however, proves that they know how to do a mighty fine cover. Smoldering dual his + hers vocals and the right amount of canned sonic heat give their version of the Doors classic "Roadhouse Blues" all sorts of sex appeal, and the video (shot for the band's live effort Live Under London) captures the band as they burn down the house. Figuratively, of course.
  







[posted 3.21.15]