Wednesday, March 30, 2011

The Untitled Interview #119: Starring Beatie Wolfe

I want y'all to pay attention here for a minute. Trust me, you'll thank me later. Remember this name: Beatie Wolfe. This little lady packs a whallop of a voice, smokey and sultry and centuries wise beyond her years. Hers is no siren song, mind you, as instead of trying to lead your ship into a rocky doom her voice might just help you find your way home. And DC folks, Saturday is your lucky, lucky day, as Ms. Wolfe will be playing an early show at Axum's Level X Lounge, one of just a handful of US dates. Make sure to stop by and see what this sonic spellcaster has up her sleeve. Oh, and if that's not enough, she's got her own free iPhone app, for all you fancy phone types. Below, Beatie ponders the importance of Leonard Cohen and William Blake, and the occasional stresses of international gig-playing.

Les Enfants Terribles: How the hell are you?
Beatie Wolfe: I’m pretty damn good thank you.

LET: What was the last song you listened to?
BW: Cranberries – “Linger,” yesterday, to remind my brother of a girl he fell for in Portugal when we were kids.

LET: Playing music is:
BW: Infinite.

LET: What album most made you realize you wanted to make music?
BW: Blood Sugar Sex Magic by the Chili Peppers – first heard it when I was 7yrs old and it totally shook my tiny world.

LET: Beatles or Stones?
BW: Stones.

LET: Top 5 albums (of now, of this month, or of ever):
BW: Wow – impossible! Okay… off the top of my head…
1. Songs of Leonard Cohen
2. Lou Reed ‘Transformer’
3. Donny Hathaway,1972 Live
4. Blood Sugar Sex Magic - RHCP
5. Brothers – Black Keys

LET: Favorite music-related movie?
BW: I really enjoyed Ray, but always wanted to rock out on top of Empire Records…

LET: Half-full or half-empty?
BW: HALF-FULL, it has to be!

LET: Which of your peers do you think is making the best music these days?
BW: I think Warpaint, Kid Cudi and Black Keys are doing a pretty good job right now.

LET: What’s the first thing you think when you wake up in the morning?
BW: Of the dream I had and how nuts it sounds.

LET: Little-known Beatie Wolfe fact?
BW: William Blake’s poetry influences me more than any artist.

LET: The greatest record store in the world is:
BW: Hmmm…I don’t think I’ve been there yet.

LET: Shaken or stirred?
BW: Both please.

LET: Best piece of advice you’ve ever been given?
BW: “No time to be scared, only time to be awesome!” (which came from my brother just before I performed my unplugged concert at St Pancras Church - oldest church in Britain - last month).

LET: How do you know when you've played a really great show?
BW: I feel awesome.

LET: If you weren’t in a band you’d be:
BW: Full-time songwriter/storyteller and yarn-spinner.

LET: What do you find most comforting/most disconcerting about going out on tour?
BW: Nothing disconcerting so far…oh except, playing a show in New York at midnight, and having just over an hour to make a flight back to London.

LET: If you were so inclined, whom would you form a tribute band in honor of?
BW: Leonard Cohen for songwriting, Roy Orbison for his perfect voice, Sly & the Family Stone for sheer fun factor!

LET: Best song ever written?
BW: Wow. What a question. Hmmm…don’t know if I’ve heard it yet (or written it – haha). I’d say… Archie Shepp’s “Contracts” - no words, but he doesn’t need them…

mp3: 1000 Kisses Deep (Leonard Cohen Cover) (Beatie Wolfe - buy stuff here)



Singles Club: Hunx & His Punx

Raise your hands, my little daddy-os, if you ever get in the mood for that whole Spector-fied, girl group sound? Yeah, good. What about the poofy prom dress, poofy bouffant slowdance vibe of the late 50s/early 60s? You too? Ok, well, now throw in some 70s glam...as in, perhaps, some New York Dolls, complete with lipstick and all.

If you're still holding up your hand, you will unquestionably adore Hunx & His Punx. If you don't love "Lovers Lane," I'll eat my kitten heel. Ok, probably not, but just go ahead and take a bite of Hunx. The album Too Young To Be In Love is out as of yesterday, so make sure you snap it up quick-like.

mp3: Lovers Lane (Hunx & His Punx from Too Young To Be In Love)

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

The Untitled Interview #118: Starring Bellflur

Oh hey. Well would you look at that, my fluffy little chickadees, it's nearly April. This means, of course, that there are only 4, count 'em 4, days until the super shindig of much awesomeness at the Bellflur Warehouse, sponsored by yours truly. Obviously, your plans for Saturday are now made, local friends. In honor of this most monumental of occasions, and because y'all know I like to get a little crazy now and then, we're gonna do a little something weird and wonderful with the Bellflurians. I now present to you the special edition Untitled Interview, starring the wild and wooly gang. Read on and be inspired. And make sure you don't miss out Saturday night.

BELLFLUR!

AS A MOVIE: Bellflur is The Edge - Alec Baldwin represents the youth and rebellion of the 20-somethings in the group while Anthony Hopkins brings the grace and temperament of the 30-somethings. As with most movies, the Edge mirrors a typical experience we find ourselves in. The bear (Bellflur) has eaten Patrick (thinking he was a punk smaller bear - the chest hair did it I think), and has now been hunting down the rest of us. Our only hope is to find an abandoned hunting lodge, heal the 20-somethings broken leg (don’t ask - kids think they know everything) with our tempered wisdom and hope that they don’t, in turn, grab the hunting rifle and shoot us in the backs once we finish writing our newest song and then head down river back to the world, telling everyone that we died so that they could live. The worst part of course, being that we didn't go back to eat that little squirrel we captured with the make-shift trap after the helicopter distracted us and we gave the kids a lesson on turning ice into fire. A must-see for all musicians before they go on tour. Cautionary tale. (Carlos) FIRE FROM ICE, BOB!!!

AS A DRINK: Bellflur is............"as Tom lay dying from a musket shot to the groin during an ill-advised civil war reenactment, and using a nearby horse bucket as a grandiose mixer, Eamonn poured in the rest of his cognac, Patrick his whiskey, Carlos his Jamaican rum, Mike his champagne. As would be red-cross nurses, Dana and Susan ran down from afar with lemons and sugar to cut the strength of this potion. The mixture, naturally, was a potent concoction (known in many circles as Chatham Artillery Punch) made to ease Tom's suffering... but each of the contributors tested this new elixir to ensure it would provide the desired result... intoxication ensued and Tom died..." (Patrick)

AS A WEATHER EVENT: Bellflur is either a summer day sunny rainstorm, a la John Fogerty's eternal question, or a quiet winter snow fall during the night. Or a tornado made of cotton-tail rabbits in the South Plains area of Texas.

AS AN OBSCURE VINTAGE LP: Bellflur is the one with a fantastic looking cover, but with no text. You buy it, secretly for the cute girl behind the perfume counter (yes the cover is airbrushed incredibly) but you never tell anyone that. It becomes a mainstay on your vinyl playlist for several months but as your hopes to discern who the band are begin to fade, you tighten the reigns on playing the album. You live in a land before the internet and no one knows what you are talking about when tell them of the album, and the folks at Tower Records don't have the import information you need. (They don't appear overly concerned with your questions despite your haphazardly looking stumble up the escalator:

To go to Lake Forest Mall and try your luck at Sam Goodies, turn to page 23
To call your crazy uncle whose clothes smell like the art teachers closet, turn to page 75

AS A MOMENT IN HISTORY: Bellflur is.........wait, what was the exact moment the world become pregnant with democracy? Cuz that is the moment. I think that makes our parents French. ......which explains the name. ...... which explains the 8 years of French I took despite being told the name Carlos is Spanish.

Or, Bellflur is the moment the winner of the Clear Cola Wars was tabulated. but for real, probably the French thing.

AS A DENOMINATION OF CURRENCY: Bellflur is the equivalent of 0.00001 former Spanish pesetas. Though still in circulation following the collapse of the Bellflur nation, bellflurs (abbreviated as BFR) are not exchangeable in the United States or the European Union... However (and very coincidentally), they can be successfully used to operate a few remaining childrens’ merry-go-rounds at certain McDonald's in the Czech Republic. (Patrick) WHAT! That’s crazy!!!

AS A SPOT IN DC: Bellflur is every left turn on U St when you are in the left lane trying get around the traffic on the right in order to get to DC9 to unload your gear. It looks like its going to get you there quick, but then you have to wait for it, arrrrggggghhh, shit, its going now, I think we will have time to.....arrgrrggghhhhhhh. Jazz drivers might appreciate these vicious changes in tempo and phrasing, but it’s lost on everyone else.

AS A VIDEO GAME/CHARACTER THEREIN: Bellflur is MarioKart for the Wii. I think we've all spent hours playing Mario Kart. This game encompasses it all: Mario, cars, motorcycles, weapons, trippy colors and the ability to bring you from joy to rage in a spilt second. Fuck Rainbow Road. (Tom) Tom forgot to mention that all of those things also encompass our music. Including a general hatred for Rainbow Road (except for me, I like Rainbow Road). Also, everyone in Bellflur has their own Wii. We race as ourselves. Against the world, but generally regional play, our internet suxorz.

AS A WORK OF LITERATURE: Bellflur is a Bill Watterson cartoon of the Brothers Karamazov: Patrick is Fyodor, Tom is Dmitri and Carlos is Ivan. Obviously, I'm Agrafena. And Mike and Eamonn and Susan are Calvin, Hobbes and Susie Derkins, respectively. (Dana)

AS A HISTORICAL FIGURE: Bellflur is Stravinsky after being booed offstage during the Rites of Spring, walking through the audience with his middle fingers aloft. Cursing and spitting and headbutting anyone who gets in his way. Is that a gun or a flask in Bell-Vinsky's coat pocket? I wouldn't wager a guess if I were you. Your best bet is to throw down your fancy white gloves, take your shot and see what fate has in store for you and your once-handsome faux-coif.

AS A CAMPAIGN PROMISE: Bellflur is going to ruin your life.

mp3: Insect Politics (Bellflur from asleep.asleep.)




On The Road Again: Eternal Summers

Y'all, sometimes it is so, SO easy to make me happy. I mean, all you have to do is tell me some wonderful piece of news, like that one of my most favorite (I'm trying not to play favorites for a minute) Virginia bands is going out on tour again. Instant glee. Throw in the news that a new EP is due out mid-April, and you might just have made my dang day. For real. If you haven't yet had the massive pleasure that is a night out with the jingle jangle shimmy lovers Eternal Summers, well, now's your chance to change that huge, huge seriously wrong wrongness.

4/10 - Ottobar - Baltimore, MD *
4/11 - DC9 - Washington, DC *
4/15 - Record Release Party @ Glasslands - Brooklyn, NY %
4/16 - Cake Shop - New York, NY
5/18 - Beachland Tavern - Cleveland, OH $
5/19 - Magic Stick Lounge - Detroit, MI $
5/20 - Empty Bottle - Chicago, IL $
5/21 - 7th Street Entry - Minneapolis, MN $
5/22 - Aquarium - Fargo, ND $
5/24 - The Badlander - Missoula, MT $
5/25 - CRAFT House - Moscow, ID $
5/26 - Media Club - Vancouver, BC $
5/27 - Healthy Times Fun Club - Seattle, WA $
5/28 - East End - Portland, OR $
5/29 - San Francisco Popfest @ Hemlock - San Francisco, CA $
5/31 - Free Instore @ Origami (5pm) - Los Angeles, CA $
5/31 - Echo - Los Angeles, CA $
6/1 - Casbah - San Diego, CA $
6/4 - Chaos in Tejas - Austin, TX $
6/5 - Free Press Summer Fest - Houston, TX $
6/6 - The Saint - New Orleans, LA $
6/7 - The Nick - Birmingham, AL $
6/8 - The Earl - Atlanta, GA $
6/9 - The Milestone - Charlotte, NC $

* w/ Cloud Nothings
% w/ Dream Diary, Golden Dogs, and Lyonnais
$ w/ The Beets

mp3: Prisoner (Eternal Summers from the forthcoming Prisoner EP)


Otherwise Engaged: Starfucker/Casiokids

It is an unfortunate reality for the serious concertgoer that on occasion, there will be more than one show on any given night that you really, really, REALLY wanna go to. Since the vast majority of us don't own a time machine, nor have the ability to either clone ourselves or split ourselves in half (or thirds or quarters, depending on the night in question), this tends to present a problem. Difficult decisions are made based on a multitude of variables (perhaps some of you even make lists of pros and cons), and ultimately, a show is chosen. But those other shows are still gonna be killer, and I'd like to give a little face time to the shows that, while I can't go myself, are highly recommended all the same.

Oh, Spring. You're such a tease. Don't let the Winter weather fool you, my loves, this is most assuredly Spring. How do I know? Because there are too many daggum good shows all at the same time, that's how. For instance, you might find yourself unsure of which awesome show to go to Wednesday evening. One of your choices is the super radness of thinking-man dance maniacs Starfucker, coming to spread their rainbow-flavored rollicking roller disco lusciousness with a serious side. all over this here city. They've been mercifully released from SXSW-related incarceration to spread their party love to the masses. Go forth and have a grand ole time.

mp3: Death As a Fetish (Starfucker from Reptilians)

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Singles Club: Craft Spells

Lo and behold, the 80s, decade of bad fashion and frightening hair though it was, have proven to be ripely inspirational for a whole generation of bands now churning out some lovely, lovely music. Latest case in point: Craft Spells.

"You Should Close The Door" reminds me a whole lot of a lo-fi, bedroom version of the glorious New Order gem "Ceremony." Not so much in terms of lyrical content, but the arch beauty of the bringing together of sounds both mournful and uplifting, and those certain transcendent moments you'll hear in both songs. Heck, the cover of the Craft Spells record even calls to mind New Order's rose-covered Power, Corruption & Lies. Worthy inspiration for a very worthy band. Mama like.

mp3: You Should Close The Door (Craft Spells from the forthcoming Idle Labor)


Video Vixens: MAKE OUT

Some of us are afflicted with an inherent, deeply-rooted lust for the chase. If it comes too easily, we just don't want it. It's a feeling that applies to a whole lotta stuff, but particularly matters of the heart. So naturally, bearing this in mind, I kinda sorta love this here song by MAKE OUT. It's a sentiment I've had on oh so many occasions, and they've wrapped it up nicely in this little ditty and the accompanying video for "I Don't Want Anybody That Wants Me."

The song toes the line between badass, sassy rock and campy silliness, though the video definitely stays more towards the latter with the bright colors, oversize flowers, and goofy facial expressions on the band. It's a super fun song, and a super super fun video. And it kinda makes me feel a little justified. Just a smidge.

mp3: I Don't Want Anybody That Wants Me (MAKE OUT from the HOW TO EP)



Live Review: A Place To Bury Strangers/Hooray For Earth @ Motorco, 3/11/2011

If there's one thing I love, my friends, it's hitting the road for an out of town show. It feels like a teensy vacation, venturing outside state lines to go see some music at a club outside your usual circle of venues. And Durham's Motorco might just be my favorite non-local spot within driving distance. So give me the chance to go see two amazing live bands at such a great venue and odds are good I'll make the trip. Even with all that hideous DC metro Friday evening traffic. But damned if Hooray for Earth and A Place to Bury Strangers weren't worth the trip and then some. I don't really know what else could be better on a Friday night.

Hooray for Earth, some of my new favorite New Yorkers, are definitely a special live band. They have this certain feel to them, a rush of breathless, frenetic yet totally chill energy. It's the sound of the promise of beautiful warm weather, and to my winter coat-wearing ears they sounded simply delightful. To me, they're at their best when bouncing all over the place sonically, buoyed by lively drums and an inescapable feeling of excitement. At times, the room lacked a little intensity, but I think a big part of that was the drunken, basketball-glutted Duke and UNC fans in attendance. Taking cues from their lovely noise, the accompanying background images were a collection of swirling, dizzying colors and shapes. Big, clunky riffs and an uneven, awesome drum beat hallmarked a lot of the songs from their upcoming LP. "The barbecue truck is fuckin' rad," they opined between killer songs that went by much too quickly. Initially, I wasn't quite sold on this tour pairing, but having seen Hooray for Earth again, and heard more of their great, great songs, I think it totally made sense. In a way, they're like the sunshine to the stormcloud of animalistic aggression that is A Place to Bury Strangers. They didn't even throw my jam ("Surrounded by Your Friends") into the set, and they were still daggum fantastic.

So too was A Place to Bury Strangers. They've been just about flawless each and every time I've seen them, and are without a doubt one of my favorite live bands. And I made damn sure to have myself some earplugs for this one. The crowd was still on the lackluster side for their set, but the band played like they didn't notice. One song in, Oliver was already going gangbusters with his guitar-playing contortions and herky jerky moves, a precursor of the awesomeness to come. They weren't, as usual, big on banter, but early on we were informed that drummer Jay Space had a broken collarbone. After their set, I'd have said I didn't believe it. He, and the rest of the band, carried out their industrialized shoegaze with gusto. "Deadbeat," one of my most-loved APTBS songs, sounded about as good as I've ever heard, with that growling bassline and Oliver's onslaught of vicious guitar noise. The guitar bore the brunt, too, ending up tossed across the stage before the song was over. My most favorite song came right after, an extra feedbacked and extra slinky rendition of "Ego Death." It was nothing short of ferocious. The trio gritted and grimed and fuzzed and tore their way through their set with much savage force. And I ate up every last minute. Also notable was "I Lived My Life to Stand in the Shadow of Your Heart," which might have been my favorite song of the night. The black and white ballerina projections were the perfect juxtaposition to the sheer brutality of the merciless fuzz. The instrumentation in this song in particular was nigh on epic. This is a band that taps into some amazing energy when they get together on a stage, and if you haven't yet seen them live, well, you'll want to amend that as soon as possible.

Despite the blase attitude of the basketball-hungover crowd, both of these bands killed it at Motorco. It was a great tour pairing, and both of these bands should be seen live whenever possible. Trust.

mp3: Comfortable, Comparable (Hooray for Earth from the Momo EP)

mp3: In Your Heart (A Place to Bury Strangers from Exploding Head)

[photo by Megan Petty - Philly, 2010]

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Singles Club: Girls Names

Sad but true: I've never been to Ireland (Northern or otherwise). However, if Girls Names is any indication, I'm missing out. This band cherrypicks bits and bobs from the best of the best (you might hear shades of Orange Juice, Josef K, The Zombies, and even Joy Division), and "Seánce on a Wet Afternoon" is oh so wonderful, from the underlying slightly sinister surfiness to the fuzz that hallmarks so many great older records. Girls Names wears their inspiration very, very well.

This song is impossible to resist, and I eagerly await the Girls Names invasion. New record Dead To Me is out soon on Slumberland, which is rapidly becoming one of my most favorite labels.

mp3:
"Seánce on a Wet Afternoon" (Girls Names from the forthcoming Dead To Me)
Girls Names - Seánce on a Wet Afternoon by Slumberland Records

The Untitled Interview #117: Starring Les Shelleys

There's something very pure about Les Shelleys. Perhaps it's the lack of much instrumentation. Or perhaps it's just how beautiful and right the voices of Angela Correa and Tom Brosseau sound together.

There's a photo they have on their Facebook page, a black and white image of the pair onstage somewhere, Tom with his guitar and Angela's hand on her hip. It's a wonderful image because, to just look at it, you'd have no idea when it was taken. And to listen to them, you'd have no idea what age they were a part of. There's a timelessness to their folksiness, that's for sure. If you have yet to get to know Les Shelleys, friends, read on. And then go have a listen.


Les Enfants Terribles: How the hell are you?
Les Shelleys: I think we're ok.

LET: What was the last song you listened to?
LS: "Nintendo" by Shelley Short. It's playing in my head right now. It's a catchy melody. But sometimes I don't like catchy melodies. They call it earworm, the repetition of a song or fragment of a song in one's head. Like when it happens with Christopher Cross whose title I won't mention here. Jesus, I want to bash my head against the wall. The last song I listened to: "Nintendo" by Shelley Short, a great, great tune. Glad it's stuck in my head.

LET: Playing music is:
LS: Pretty fucking sweet.

LET: What album most made you realize you wanted to make music?
LS: An album by San Diegan Gregory Page. When I heard these songs I could see myself singing them, performing them. It was almost like I wrote them. Romantic Adventures Of Harry (BizarrePlanet, 1995) is so unforgettable too because every word recorded is pure emotion. You can at times even hear him smile.

LET: Beatles or Stones?

LS: Beatles.

LET: Top 5 albums (of now, of this month, or of ever):

LS:
1). Soundtrack to Shawshank Redemption
2). Soundtrack to Fabulous Baker Brothers
3). The Complete Recordings of Robert Johnson
4). Then Came The After by Shelley Short
5). Romantic Adventures of Harry by Gregory Page

LET: Favorite music-related movie?

LS: Coal Miner's Daughter

LET: Half-full or half-empty?

LS: What's half-empty, again?

LET: Which of your peers do you think is making the best music these days?

LS: Frankel - a songwriter I've know for years who lives in Silverlake. I just heard his latest album and it blew my mind.

LET: What’s the first thing you think when you wake up in the morning?

LS: OK, am I here, or have I gone on?

LET: Little-known Les Shelleys fact?

LS: The first two songs we ever sang together were "Sowing On The Mountain" and "I Still Miss Someone," at Tom's North Dakota record release in San Diego back in 2002.

LET: The greatest record store in the world is:

LS: Lou's Records in Encinitas, California.

LET: Shaken or stirred?

LS: Depends on the drink.

LET: Best piece of advice you’ve ever been given?

LS: The Lord loves a working man. Don't trust whitey. If you get it, see a doctor and get rid of it.

LET: If you weren’t in a band you’d be:

LS: living somewhere far off in Latin America.

LET: Favorite Shelley: Mary Shelley, Percy Bysshe Shelley, or Shelley Duvall?

LS: Shelley Duvall!

LET: What do you find most comforting/most disconcerting about going out on tour?

LS: Most comforting: going back to places with good memories and new friends.
Most disconcerting: uncomfortable beds - leaving a cozy bed behind is hard to get over.

LET: If you were so inclined, whom would you form a tribute band in honor of?

LS: Thin Lizzy.

LET: Best song ever written?

LS: "Life On Mars" by David Bowie.

mp3: The Late John Garfield Blues (Les Shelleys from Les Shelleys) (thanks to Ketelmuziek)



On The Road Again: Peelander-Z

Sadly, I've never had the pleasure of seeing the insane cirque du freakaliciousness that is the legendary live show of Peelander-Z, and while my chance to change that might not be coming soon, you might be lucky enough to experience the 100 proof white lightning strike that is Peelander-Z.

The rainbow-tasting garageabilly rockers and their crazy hair will be spreading their love all over this great land, finishing up their US tour with a string of dates on the Warped Tour. Y'all, it's about to get a little wacky. Full dates below.

03/27 Salt Lake City, UT @ Urban Lounge
03/29 Ketchum, ID @ Whiskey Jacques
03/30 Boise, ID @ TBA
03/31 Eugene, OR @ WOW Hall
04/01 Seattle, WA @ Studio Seven
04/02 Portland, OR @ Someday Lounge
04/05 Stockton, CA @ Plea For Peace Center
04/06 Orangevale, CA @ Boardwalk
04/07 San Francisco, CA @ DNA Lounge
04/08 Los Angeles, CA @ The Roxy
04/09 Temecula, CA @ The Vault
04/10 Las Vegas, NV @ TBA
04/12 Tulsa, OK @ The Marquee
04/13 Farmington, MO @ The Vault
04/14 Chicago, IL @ Reggie’s Music Joint
04/15 St. Paul, MN @ Turf Club
04/16 Milwaukee, WI @ Turner Hall
04/17 Pontiac, MI @ The Pike Room
04/18 Cleveland, OH @ Beachland Tavern
04/19 Newport, KY @ Southgate House
04/20 Knoxville, TN @ Cider House WUTK Presents
04/21 Atlanta, GA @ The Masquerade
04/22 Nashville, TN @ The End
04/23 Tallahassee, FL @ Engine Room
04/26 New Orleans, LA @ One Eyed Jack’s
04/27 Houston, TX @ Fitzgerald’s
04/28 Austin, TX @ The Parish
04/29 Dallas, TX @ The Loft
04/30 Norman, OK @ Norman Music Festival
06/05 Ozark, AR @ Wakarusa Festival
07/20 Cleveland, OH @ Time Warner Cable Amphitheater Vans Warped Tour
07/21 Camden, NJ @ Susquehanna Center Vans Warped Tour
07/22 Burgettstown, PA @ First Niagra Pavillion Vans Warped Tour
07/23 Uniondale, NY @ Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum Vans Warped Tour
07/24 Oceanport, NJ @ Monmouth Park Racetrack Vans Warped Tour
07/26 Columbia, MD @ Merriweather Post Pavilion Vans Warped Tour
07/27 Virginia Beach, VA @ Verizon Wireless Amphitheatre Vans Warped Tour
07/28 Charlotte, NC @ Verizon Wireless Amphitheatre Vans Warped Tour
07/29 Orlando, FL @ Firestone Amphitheatre Vans Warped Tour

mp3: Taco Taco Tacos (Peelander-Z from P-TV-Z)

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Video Vixens: Ghost Eyes

There's a lot of love for Fujiya & Miyagi around here, that's for sure. But there's also a whole lotta love for those who (skillfully) remix the fine fine songs of F & M. Take for instance the dastardly doings of Ghost Eyes.

Ghost Eyes takes a typically slinked-up, naughty little Fujiya & Miyagi jam and takes it a step further, adding some underlying, chilly creepiness along with some big ole beats and an enticing hint of the Orient. The video itself pulls from a vintage cartoon about honeymooning animals and the tuxedo cat whose significant other jilted him. Look for the moonwalking at the end, y'all. Great remix and great, unexpected video.

mp3: Cat Got Your Tongue (Ghost Eyes Remix) (Fujiya & Miyagi from Ventriloquizzing)



Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Pssst...Another LET-Sponsored Showtacular!

Ok, y'all. I don't know what you local types have planned for April 2, but you'll probably want to adjust your plans accordingly once I tell you about a little event going down in the friendly confines of Rockville, MD. Yours truly is happy to announce a little soiree at the Bellflur warehouse of joyousness, and it will be sensational. Believe you me. We're talking seven shades of serious spectacle.

There will be music, courtesy of your cinematic and oh-so fabulous hosts (and LET local faves) Bellflur, along with more excellent local musicianship provided by The Vita Ruins (perhaps if you ask nicely they'll play their smokin' cover of Depeche Mode's "Enjoy The Silence"). But it doesn't end with the music my sweeties. Oh no. We're getting all super cultural on your asses. Artiste extraordinaire (just check that poster for an example) Rich Bernett will be showing some work, as well as screening his film Project 15. And, if that's not quite enough, Goodloe Byron will be reading from his novel "The Wraith." All of this can be yours for FREE. Unless, of course, you feel like being a super kind soul and opening your wallet to donate a little. Donations from the show will go towards the Ft. Reno concert series (a rather worthwhile endeavor).

Seriously. What else could you possibly be doing?!

mp3: Insect Politics (Bellflur from asleep.asleep)


Singles Club: Sex Beet

So there I was, out and about earlier this week, when what should happen to come on the jukebox but the classic Gun Club song "Sex Beat?" Naturally, it made me remember the message Luke Sex Beet had sent me a little while back, proffering a new ditty of theirs that was, as he put it, cleaner than other stuff I've heard. Fear not, loves, he didn't mean cleaned up musically. Just production-wise.

The song comes from a split with Human Eye, and that band's somewhat campy, 50s b-movie done modern track "Martian Girl" isn't half bad either. But Sex Beet proves themselves winners once again with their sleazy, somewhat snarling take on a girl group gem gone so very rightly wrong. In my book, singing about breaking hearts is where it's at. I already love these dudes, now it's your turn.

mp3: Alone (Sex Beet from Human Eye/Sex Beet Split)

Otherwise Engaged: Fujiya & Miyagi/BRAHMS/Warm Ghost

It is an unfortunate reality for the serious concertgoer that on occasion, there will be more than one show on any given night that you really, really, REALLY wanna go to. Since the vast majority of us don't own a time machine, nor have the ability to either clone ourselves or split ourselves in half (or thirds or quarters, depending on the night in question), this tends to present a problem. Difficult decisions are made based on a multitude of variables (perhaps some of you even make lists of pros and cons), and ultimately, a show is chosen. But those other shows are still gonna be killer, and I'd like to give a little face time to the shows that, while I can't go myself, are highly recommended all the same.

Y'all, this one really, really hurts. Sure, I've missed a few good shows in my day, but this here show tomorrow night is gonna be STELLAR. I just know it. I've been lucky enough to see Fujiya & Miyagi once before, and seeing them in a smaller space would be amazing. If you like your danceable Britness sultry and smart and slinky and smoky, this is the band for you. On their own, they would be non-missable, but throw in BRAHMS and Warm Ghost? I don't know what you've got planned for tomorrow, but you might want to rethink it, unless of course you're hitting the Rock & Roll Hotel for this shindig. Yeah, I won't be there, but you can make up for my absence and go have a damn good time for the both of us.

mp3: Sixteen Shade of Black & Blue (Fujiya & Miyagi from Ventriloquizzing)

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Otherwise Engaged: Young Galaxy/Winter Gloves

It is an unfortunate reality for the serious concertgoer that on occasion, there will be more than one show on any given night that you really, really, REALLY wanna go to. Since the vast majority of us don't own a time machine, nor have the ability to either clone ourselves or split ourselves in half (or thirds or quarters, depending on the night in question), this tends to present a problem. Difficult decisions are made based on a multitude of variables (perhaps some of you even make lists of pros and cons), and ultimately, a show is chosen. But those other shows are still gonna be killer, and I'd like to give a little face time to the shows that, while I can't go myself, are highly recommended all the same.

Tonight there is a bunch of stuff going on in town, one of these events being what surely will be a great, great show over at the Red Palace with Young Galaxy and Winter Gloves. Having seen Montrealians Young Galaxy live a few months back, I can say for a fact that those of you who venture over to the Atlas District for this here show shan't be disappointed. Go on, go out and have yourself a daggum good time.

mp3: Plastic Slides (Winter Gloves from All Red)


mp3: Peripheral Visionaries (Young Galaxy from Shapeshifting)



Saturday, March 19, 2011

The Untitled Interview #116 – SXSW Edition: Starring BRAIDS

The days are getting longer, the nights are getting shorter and sweeter, and that, my little vixens, can only mean one thing: it's getting close to being almost time for the one and only SXSW. And of course, that means I had to ask some questions of the bands I'd sure want to see if I was heading down to Austin for the 25th annual SXSW-stravaganza.

BRAIDS is something else, y'all. Another one of the Canadian musical elite, this here band will get your pulse racing and your blood going with their deliriously dynamite sound. It's breathy and dreamy, but with an undercurrent of severe and serious rock. Haunting lady vocals send this band right there over the top. Here's what they'll be getting up to down Austin way.

Les Enfants Terribles: How are you getting to SXSW: plane, train, or automobile?
BRAIDS: Automomeal, cereal wheels.

LET: Inevitably, you will forget to pack:

B: Swagger and cuteness.

LET: How many showcases/parties will you be playing?

B: Neuf.

LET: Band you're most looking forward to seeing at the festival?
B: Sean Nicholas Savage. He just released an album Trippple Midnight Karma. Go here to order a tape. Very very special artist. I believe, Canada's best songwriter.

LET: What's the first thing you plan on doing upon arrival in Austin?

B: Finding my friend Patricia and giving her a big hug.

LET: What was the first festival you ever attended, either as a musician or member of the general public?
B: Calgary Folk Festival. I was of the general public. I danced to Broken Social Scene! A very folk festival thing to do.

LET: Favorite thing about festivals?

B: A lot of the time you get to be with your friends. It's especially nice to see people you love when you have been on the road away from them for months!

mp3: Plath Heart (BRAIDS from Native Speaker)

The Untitled Interview #115 – SXSW Edition: Starring Little Red

The days are getting longer, the nights are getting shorter and sweeter, and that, my little vixens, can only mean one thing: it's getting close to being almost time for the one and only SXSW. And of course, that means I had to ask some questions of the bands I'd sure want to see if I was heading down to Austin for the 25th annual SXSW-stravaganza.

I’d hazard a guess, given their lively, rollicking sound, that Little Red can probably show a gal a good time. The latest Down Under band to hit SXSW in an attempt to captivate the kids, Little Red’s easy to listen to rock-pop should prove easily digestable. Here’s what the band’s got planned for their time in Austin.

Les Enfants Terribles: How are you getting to SXSW: plane, train, or automobile?
Little Red: By plane from Australia, via to Papua New Guinea and New York - not the most direct way.

LET: Inevitably, you will forget to pack:
LR: Vegemite.

LET: How many showcases/parties will you be playing?
LR: We've got 6 shows in Austin - the Neon Gold party on Wed night at 8pm is the official one and then some other great parties too - 3pm Wed at Virgin House, 3pm Fri at Uncorked with Paper Garden records, Fri at 4.40pm at Maggie Mae's for Sonicbids, the NoiseRacket party is 12.30pm Sat at FADO's and then the Aussie BBQ at Maggie Mae's Sat at 2.55. Really looking forward to it!

LET: Band you're most looking forward to seeing at the festival?
LR: The Strokes, Black Lips and we're actually really looking forward to finding new bands we've either never seen before or maybe even never heard of. And Asian bands!

LET: What's the first thing you plan on doing upon arrival in Austin?
LR: Shooting guns and wearing cowboy hats.

LET: What was the first festival you ever attended, either as a musician or member of the general public?
LR: It was probably the Big Day Out in Melbourne but the first one we went to all together was The Falls Festival, we didn't have tickets but someone let us in and it was great.

LET: Favorite thing about festivals?
LR: Babes, money and VIP passes.

mp3: Forget About Your Man (Little Red from Midnight Remember)

The Untitled Interview #114 – SXSW Edition: Starring Richie James Follin (Guards)

The days are getting longer, the nights are getting shorter and sweeter, and that, my little vixens, can only mean one thing: it's getting close to being almost time for the one and only SXSW. And of course, that means I had to ask some questions of the bands I'd sure want to see if I was heading down to Austin for the 25th annual SXSW-stravaganza.

Richie James Follin is one busy dude these days. One of his ventures is the sublime Guards, a candy-coated fuzzy lo-fi loveliness, bringing some scuzzy, sludgy rock and some saccharine poppy sweetness together in a perfect pairing. Guards is guarandamnteed to show you a good time, y’all. Pulling double duty down in Austin between Cults and Guards, Follin will hopefully have a chance to enjoy some barbecue.

Les Enfants Terribles: How are you getting to SXSW: plane, train, or automobile?
Richie James Follin: Automobile. I'm touring out to SXSW as we speak...

LET: Inevitably, you will forget to pack:
RJF: I will forget nothing. I am a master of the road.

LET: How many showcases/parties will you be playing?
RJF: 15 or so between my two bands...

LET: Band you're most looking forward to seeing at the festival?
RJF: The Strange Boys.

LET: What's the first thing you plan on doing upon arrival in Austin?
RJF: The four B's...brews, bros, babes, and BBQ.

LET: What was the first festival you ever attended, either as a musician or member of the general public?
RJF: Lollapalooza 96'...my stepdad played the main stage so I was backstage for the whole thing...Ramones, Devo, Rancid, Screaming Trees, Soundgarden, Metallica...

LET: Favorite thing about festivals?
RJF: Getting to see a bunch of bands you have been hearing about all in the same day..

mp3: Resolution of One (Guards from Guards)

The Untitled Interview #113 – SXSW Edition: Starring Pat Jordache

The days are getting longer, the nights are getting shorter and sweeter, and that, my little vixens, can only mean one thing: it's getting close to being almost time for the one and only SXSW. And of course, that means I had to ask some questions of the bands I'd sure want to see if I was heading down to Austin for the 25th annual SXSW-stravaganza.

The music made by Pat Jordache is quite frequently messy, loud, and all over the place. The latest record, Future Songs, was given an apt title, because the songs sound to me like songs stuck between now and then, bits and pieces of here and there. I hear occasional nods to Black Dice, Joy Division, Xiu Xiu, and Islands, you’ll probably hear something totally different. But again, that’s quite alright with me. Below, it sure sounds like this is one busy band this SXSW.

Les Enfants Terribles: How are you getting to SXSW: plane, train, or automobile?
Pat Jordache: Win32 drivers.

LET: Inevitably, you will forget to pack:

PJ: The soundblaster.

LET: How many showcases/parties will you be playing?
PJ: So many that it would be easier to say that I stop playing for X time, the spreadsheet would be smaller.

LET: Band you're most looking forward to seeing at the festival?

PJ: Cadence Weapon.

LET: What's the first thing you plan on doing upon arrival in Austin?
PJ: Cut the pant legs off my Zegna jeans and make headbands for infants with them

LET: What was the first festival you ever attended, either as a musician or member of the general public?
PJ: The Royal Horsejumping Championship in Toronto.

LET: Favorite thing about festivals?
PJ: Doggies.

mp3: Radio Generation (Pat Jordache from Future Songs)

The Untitled Interview #112 – SXSW Edition: Starring Colin Stetson

The days are getting longer, the nights are getting shorter and sweeter, and that, my little vixens, can only mean one thing: it's getting close to being almost time for the one and only SXSW. And of course, that means I had to ask some questions of the bands I'd sure want to see if I was heading down to Austin for the 25th annual SXSW-stravaganza.

I’m not sure if he’s making music for these apocalyptic times in which we live, or music from years in the future, but whatever it is that Colin Stetson’s doing, it’s intense and unlike anything you’re likely to hear being done by anyone else. The wacky, unexpected things that Stetson can do with horns is unreal, my friends. Unreal. Obviously, he is not to be missed. And go on, buy him a fried avocado taco.

Les Enfants Terribles: How are you getting to SXSW: plane, train, or automobile?
Colin Stetson: I will be arriving by plane, though actually I have a show in NYC the day before, so I'll be driving down from Montreal for that. So, plane and automobile, but no train.

LET: Inevitably, you will forget to pack:
CS: My European power adapters...wait, I don't need them!

LET: How many showcases/parties will you be playing?

CS: Five, and a couple other things.

LET: Band you're most looking forward to seeing at the festival?
CS: Looking forward to seeing my friends in Gayngs, Sway Machinery, and the Luyas.

LET: What's the first thing you plan on doing upon arrival in Austin?
CS: I hear they have tacos with fried avocado. Probably be eating one of those.

LET: What was the first festival you ever attended, either as a musician or member of the general public?
CS: ACL, playing with Antibalas.

LET: Favorite thing about festivals?
CS: All the ridiculous drunkards not paying attention to any of the music. No, wait, that's my least favorite thing about festivals.

mp3: Fear of The Unknown & The Blazing Sun (Colin Stetson from New History Warfare Vol. 2: Judges)

The Untitled Interview #111 – SXSW Edition: Starring Mikey Wallace (Friendo)

The days are getting longer, the nights are getting shorter and sweeter, and that, my little vixens, can only mean one thing: it's getting close to being almost time for the one and only SXSW. And of course, that means I had to ask some questions of the bands I'd sure want to see if I was heading down to Austin for the 25th annual SXSW-stravaganza.'

Y'all already know I loves me some Friendo. After all, they had one of my favorite records of 2010. Their raw, dissonant angularity melded with lighter, less ferocious prettiness encapsulated into perfect little songs is music to mine ears. The lo-fi grit of it all is a delight. Mikey (or Mike, for those formal occasions) Wallace gives one of my favorite ever interviews below, and causes an eyebrow raise or two in the process. Secret rendezvous? Oh behave!

Les Enfants Terribles: How are you getting to SXSW: plane, train, or automobile?
Mikey Wallace: The Canadian half of the trip we will be traveling by dog sled because that’s how we get around up here. The lower states we will be barebackin' it because that's how they get around down there right?

LET: Inevitably, you will forget to pack:

MW: My drumsticks! I'm not even the drummer, but I try to remember to bring some because I know Henry will forget his!

LET: How many showcases/parties will you be playing?

MW: One! Because we plan on enjoying ourselves, catching other great acts, swimming in the river, shooting guns, slapping a police horse, going to jail, getting bailed out of jail, getting bit by a rattlesnake etc... all the great Texan (SXSW) adventures to be had.

LET: Band you're most looking forward to seeing at the festival?

MW: I was really pumped on seeing my good friend Idiot Glee but since recently finding out that Mike Tyson former heavyweight champion will be promoting iPhones I simply can't imagine a greater performance than a man so large with a voice so small promoting Apple products.

LET: What's the first thing you plan on doing upon arrival in Austin?

MW: It's usually go swimming at the amazing Barton Springs, but after days and days of dog sledding and horse riding I'll probably have a beer and a secret rendezvous with my ladyfriend who I will be meeting down there, In her tour van I'm sure..

LET: What was the first festival you ever attended, either as a musician or member of the general public?

MW: Sled Island is the best thing that ever happened to my Butt Fuck home town of Calgary. It was great I was able to perform with Women on an outdoor main stage and it was really fun. I got blackout drunk hanging out with Mogwai trying to drink like a Scot!

LET: Favorite thing about festivals?

MW: Probably everything except all the fucking loser whores all over the streets passing out flyers of their bands shows saying how good their band is that I will love their band and that I should go check out their band! Positives include ~ Taco trucks, running from show to show, playing shows, not having to work or do real life things, staying up all night for three days, babes, bros, Texas Heat (Canada is so cold right now), free shoes, free cigarettes (I don’t even smoke) and meeting new people to name a few fun things!

mp3: Counter/Time (Friendo from Cold Toads)

The Untitled Interview #110 – SXSW Edition: Starring Marc St. Louis (Valleys)

The days are getting longer, the nights are getting shorter and sweeter, and that, my little vixens, can only mean one thing: it's getting close to being almost time for the one and only SXSW. And of course, that means I had to ask some questions of the bands I'd sure want to see if I was heading down to Austin for the 25th annual SXSW-stravaganza.

Valleys has come to share with the world a magical, bewitching sonic reverie, you lovely loves of mine. This is a band capable of creating hypnotic, otherworldly trances with their songs, pulling you in and not letting go. Their music is nothing short of beautiful, and that’s a fact. Read on to see what Marc St. Louis has to say about this year’s SXSW. And I must say, making sure you’re in the right place is probably the sagest of all possible advice.

Les Enfants Terribles: How are you getting to SXSW: plane, train, or automobile?
Marc St. Louis: In a red Volvo station wagon.

LET: Inevitably, you will forget to pack:
MSL: Business cards, iPad, overnight eyelid tightening balm and my helmet.

LET: How many showcases/parties will you be playing?
MSL: 6 or 7, I think.

LET: Bands you're most looking forward to seeing at the festival?

MSL: White Hills, Lower Dens.

LET: What's the first thing you plan on doing upon arrival in Austin?
MSL: Make sure we are in Austin.

LET: What was the first festival you ever attended, either as a musician or member of the general public?

MSL: As a civilian, Lollapalooza in 1994. Highlights: Boredoms, Breeders, A Tribe Called Quest, L7.

LET: Favorite thing about festivals?

MSL: Inter-band sports.

mp3: Ordinary Dream (Valleys from the Stoner EP)

The Untitled Interview #109 – SXSW Edition: Starring Paul Duncan (Warm Ghost)

The days are getting longer, the nights are getting shorter and sweeter, and that, my little vixens, can only mean one thing: it's getting close to being almost time for the one and only SXSW. And of course, that means I had to ask some questions of the bands I'd sure want to see if I was heading down to Austin for the 25th annual SXSW-stravaganza.

Crazy Warm Ghost/LET tidbit of knowledge: Way back when yours truly was a book/record store maven, one of the perks was getting truckloads of free music. One such record was by a guy called Paul Duncan, and it was so weird and wonderful that I totally fell in smit with it. Years later, Paul Duncan has once again come into my life, this time in the guise of Warm Ghost, his former solo and now joint venture (with Oliver Chapoy). The sound is still weird and wonderful, but a lot heavier on the electronics. Below, Paul talks about SXSW and his plans for Warm Ghost’s first (but probably not last) festival.

Les Enfants Terribles: How are you getting to SXSW: plane, train, or automobile?
Paul Duncan: Taking a plane to east Texas where my folks live, then driving a pickup to Austin. That's how we roll.

LET: Inevitably, you will forget to pack:

PD: A million dollars for tacos and BBQ.

LET: How many showcases/parties will you be playing?

PD: We are playing 4 and a possible 5th.

LET: Band you're most looking forward to seeing at the festival?

PD: Laurel Halo…also J Mascis is playing later in the night after us on Wednesday I think. Pretty stoked for that too.

LET: What's the first thing you plan on doing upon arrival in Austin?

PD: Stretch from the 5 hour drive and say hey to friends I haven't seen in years.

LET: What was the first festival you ever attended, either as a musician or member of the general public?

PD: Lollapalooza…I was like 15-16. Saw Pavement, Beck, Sonic Youth and…Cypress Hill. I fell asleep on the grass next to a girl with blue hair and an L7 shirt.

LET: Favorite thing about festivals?

PD: This will be our first one to play, but I like the idea of getting to walk around in the sun with a beer and see other peeps play music.

mp3: Open the Wormhole in Your Heart (Warm Ghost from the Claws Overhead EP)

The Untitled Interview #108 – SXSW Edition: Starring Todd Miller (A Lull)

The days are getting longer, the nights are getting shorter and sweeter, and that, my little vixens, can only mean one thing: it's getting close to being almost time for the one and only SXSW. And of course, that means I had to ask some questions of the bands I'd sure want to see if I was heading down to Austin for the 25th annual SXSW-stravaganza.

Darned if I’m even gonna attempt to shoehorn Chicago’s A Lull into a genre, y’all. The closest I’d get is industrial pop, but even that barely scratches the surface. They clatter and clang and hook their way around songs, and the resulting noise is confounding yet kinda awesome. One-man rhythm section Todd Miller puts his SXSW thinking cap on below. I’m betting he hears “Oye Como Va” in his sleep by now...

Les Enfants Terribles: How are you getting to SXSW: plane, train, or automobile?
Todd Miller: We just bought a new (to us) van before we went out at the end of February. It seems like we've had nothing but van issues since we've been a band. This is our third one in three years, but unlike the past two, which were fifteen years old, this one is a 2007. For the first time, we feel pretty confident that we will get to where we need to be without major problems (as I'm looking for a piece of wood to knock on).

LET: Inevitably, you will forget to pack:
TM: Well, since we've already been out for about a week and a half now and are going to head straight to SXSW after this tour, anything we forgot, we have already picked up along the way. I guess we kind of forgot to figure out a stereo situation in the new van, although it was kind of a money-based decision. We decided not to have a stereo installed with an auxiliary input because we thought we would be able to survive on FM radio for three weeks, but we quickly realized that classic rock stations around the country have identical play lists. And it's getting really old. For example, we've heard "Oye Como Va" by Santana enough times already to last us a lifetime.

LET: How many showcases/parties will you be playing?

TM: We will be playing four times.

LET: Band you're most looking forward to seeing at the festival?

TM: We're really looking forward to the Schuba's/Lincoln Hall Roundup. Those are two venues in Chicago that we love, so we're really excited to get down there and hang out for Thursday afternoon.

LET: What's the first thing you plan on doing upon arrival in Austin?

TM: Last year I had what was, by far, the best BBQ I've ever had. It's was super simple, just brisket, hot links and white bread, no sauce needed. The only problem is that the friend who brought it to us has since moved to New Zealand. So we're on our own for finding it, but I think we're up for the challenge.

LET: What was the first festival you ever attended, either as a musician or member of the general public?

TM: I went to Lollapalooza for the first time in 2008, but I haven't been back since. A couple of the guys in the band have been down to Bonnaroo a couple of times as well. As a band, we played a showcase at SXSW last year and we played this year in January at Tomorrow Never Knows in Chicago at Lincoln Hall. We will also be playing at Middle of the Map in Kansas City in April. We'd love to play as many as we can moving forward since they are a great way to get a lot of people in the same place and offer them a wide variety of music choices.

LET: Favorite thing about festivals?

TM: Like I said, it's a great way for people to go to one place and see a bunch of different music, and they are great for bands since they are exposed to audiences that they may have not been exposed to otherwise.

mp3: Weapons for War (A Lull from the forthcoming Confetti)

The Untitled Interview #107 – SXSW Edition: Starring Jessie Stein (The Luyas)

The days are getting longer, the nights are getting shorter and sweeter, and that, my little vixens, can only mean one thing: it's getting close to being almost time for the one and only SXSW. And of course, that means I had to ask some questions of the bands I'd sure want to see if I was heading down to Austin for the 25th annual SXSW-stravaganza.

I had the immense pleasure of seeing Montreal’s The Luyas live not too long ago, and my dear dearests they were sensational. Like many of their Montreal band brethren, the band traverses some interesting sonic territory, but they find a way to make their noise sound rather breathtaking at times. Believe you me. You have to see/hear/experience them for yourselves. Songstress Jessie Stein lets us in on her SXSW plans.

Les Enfants Terribles: How are you getting to SXSW: plane, train, or automobile?
Jessie Stein: Big decal covered diesel van.

LET: Inevitably, you will forget to pack:

JS: My sanity.

LET: How many showcases/parties will you be playing?

JS: 7 or so!

LET: Band you're most looking forward to seeing at the festival?

JS: Cass McCombs.

LET: What's the first thing you plan on doing upon arrival in Austin?

JS: High-fiving the dudes from Dead Oceans cause it's been months. After that, I want to eat a taco.

LET: What was the first festival you ever attended, either as a musician or member of the general public?

JS: The Royal Winter fair in Toronto is an agricultural festival that I was obsessed with from age 8-15. The first time I went to a music festival it was probably Canadian Music Week or something. I was underage and bands snuck me in back entrances of the clubs. It was awesome.

LET: Favorite thing about festivals?

JS: Getting to see and meet other bands, I guess.

mp3: Too Beautiful to Work (The Luyas from Too Beautiful to Work)

The Untitled Interview #106 – SXSW Edition: Starring Royal Forest

The days are getting longer, the nights are getting shorter and sweeter, and that, my little vixens, can only mean one thing: it's getting close to being almost time for the one and only SXSW. And of course, that means I had to ask some questions of the bands I'd sure want to see if I was heading down to Austin for the 25th annual SXSW-stravaganza.

Time to check in with another Austin band, I think. Royal Forest (formerly known as Loxsly) makes quite a jangle, getting their shimmy on while staying true to the Austinian love of the psych rock. It’s a dandy little sound they make, friends, quite splendid, so try them for yourselves. Below, more local SXSW conversationalizing.

Les Enfants Terribles: How are you getting to SXSW: plane, train, or automobile?
Royal Forest: We are lucky enough to live in this fair city of Austin.

LET: Inevitably, you will forget to pack:

RF: This is Texas, land of the Nuge. If you aren't packing, then you are SOL.

LET: How many showcases/parties will you be playing?

RF: We typically play about 4-6 shows, but nothing is really confirmed until the week before. When you live in Austin you know the chaos that is SXSW.

LET: Band you're most looking forward to seeing at the festival?

RF: Ke$ha

LET: What's the first thing you plan on doing upon arrival in Austin?

RF: Again, we live here so we have been doing it for 7 years, ROCKING.

LET: What was the first festival you ever attended, either as a musician or member of the general public?

RF: Lollapolooza in Phoenix somewhere in the late 90's. KoRn dropped off the line up earlier in the festival season which was a downer to the 16 year old version of me. I did get to watch Snoop Dogg and get visually molested by MJK of Tool. Atari Teenage Riot played and still is the best noise out of Germany since WWII. They are like Enon on 11 but through a fuzz pedal and less dancey, and really nothing much like them.

LET: Favorite thing about festivals?

RF: Free food. Last year HOMETAPES did an amazing showcase where they cooked everyone breakfast! It was great.

mp3: You’re a Big Girl Now (Royal Forest from Borrowed Tune/You’re a Big Girl Now – Free Download y’all!) (thanks Meccalecca)

The Untitled Interview #105 – SXSW Edition: Starring Jessica Grassia (Golden Dogs)

The days are getting longer, the nights are getting shorter and sweeter, and that, my little vixens, can only mean one thing: it's getting close to being almost time for the one and only SXSW. And of course, that means I had to ask some questions of the bands I'd sure want to see if I was heading down to Austin for the 25th annual SXSW-stravaganza.

For some reason, whenever I hear the name Golden Dogs, I think of Bowie’s “Diamond Dogs.” Totally irrational, perhaps, but I like to think there’s a smidge of Bowie to be found in the music of these feisty Toronto-ites. They get a little raw with their pop-laden rock, and yours truly sure does dig it. Below, check out what salty yet sweet lady mouthpiece Jessica Grassia has on her mind regarding all things SXSW.

Les Enfants Terribles: How are you getting to SXSW: plane, train, or automobile? Jessica Grassia: Taking the BIG BOY, the Betty White, the Vananarama (our white and gracefully rusted 1992 Dodge Ram van with 360 vision). Last time we went to SXSW it was almost the virgin voyage. Now she's a vet. Still purrin' like a bearcat.

LET: Inevitably, you will forget to pack:

JG: Swimsuit - never fails.

LET: How many showcases/parties will you be playing?
JG: So far, one party, one showcase.

LET: Band you're most looking forward to seeing at the festival?
JG: Spoon (always great) - Don't even need to check the schedule. Guaranteed they’re playing somewhere.

LET: What's the first thing you plan on doing upon arrival in Austin?

JG: Either Mexican & margaritas or BBQ and beer. First morning, breakfast burritos are a must. On tour, it's amazing how much you think about food. We'll also be staying with our good friend from Toronto who lives in Austin now, so the first thing we'll probably do is sit in his back yard drinking some bubbly water and NOT freezing. SXSW is such a nice escape from Canadian winters. It's hilarious seeing all the pasty white Canucks walking around with their shirt sleeves and pant legs rolled up....

LET: What was the first festival you ever attended, either as a musician or member of the general public?

JG: The first festival I can remember playing as a band was the Festival of Friends in Hamilton, ON. Sass Jordan was the headliner and it was the first and only show ever I played rhythm guitar - for some reason, that never happened again...I must have been way too good.

LET: Favorite thing about festivals?

JG: I love the way the vibe of festival completely takes over a city and gives it an identity. I only know Austin in SXSW circumstances, so my idea of Austin is this crazy, wild music-frenzied place where you can walk down the street and someone will hand you a pack of free cigarettes, then you walk into a bar and there's free drinks and a cool band you've never heard of playing while there's band vans driving up and down the streets blaring music and giving out flyers then you see Wayne Coyne and he's rolling down the street in a big bubble while you're following the pack to some Beastie Boys afterparty...everyday at SXSW is like that.

mp3: As Long As You Like (Golden Dogs from the forthcoming Coat of Arms)