Tuesday, March 31, 2009

MacRock #3 - We covet our neighbor's wife but quietly

Artists playing at MacRock in the "soft rock" venue

Zac Hryciak & the Jungle Beats - appealing youngster who has surely sniffed his gatefold Banhart and Jana LPs all too often. Derivative sure but also dulcet, sweet and harmless. Don't believe me then check out his "Up On The Mountain" cut on his cryspace page before dismissing him too quickly.

American Tourist - and continuing in the folk vein... more business, less hat than the previous guy which aint thought of neccesarily as a good thing Recent JMU grad so home court blahblah. His mountain song is "House Mountain" (there's more at his website) recalls Animal Collective's forays onto the porch.

Josh Small - Sloppy Fahey axe-oriented classish folk but w/enough raw talent to make ya kinda perk out an ear or three. Nothing I'd norm. seek out but the slight type of stuff that didn't make you 180 degree when you heard it in coffee shops (B.S.W. - as in Before the Starfuckstrification of the World). "Move Your Hips" (courtesy Suburban Home Records)

Pree - Tell the cops: Jana Hunter is locked in a closet somewhere in Arlington being fed cathair and Easy-bake oven cakes. Pree is May Tobol's project and no it's not slang for pre-ejaculate although that would be way cool if it was. It's an obscure reference to the title of a somewhat disturbing Jeff Mangum song. IT also rhymes with twee but that's gotta be a coincidence. Lotsa love already for this project on the hype so I ain't gonna add to it.

The Young Sinclairs - Kindercore's garage-psyche revivalists. What's lacking in gusto is traded in for authenticity. Roanoke calling to the far away towns, phoney flaming groovies has bitten the dust.

Accordian Death Squad - Be thankful you live in a era when people have the leisure time to form bands like this. Or be not thankful because it adds more evidence to the already so full its sinking feeling that nothing much really matters anymore and so people just do anything and seem to want a paycheck/bed&board/props for it. Not everybody is worthy of being Jack Rose.

Still. I am not mean.

It's quite fetching instrumental Balkan-punk fare suitable for your next chili-cookoff or indie film soundtrack. I wouldn''t kick them out of my backyard if I had one and I'd probably kick out Gogol Bordello. Whereas. If Hawk and a Handsaw showed up, I'd tell these guys to just shut the fuck up and sit down.

The Extraordinaries - Ah, a pop band?! I like their "The Chicken Or The Egg or The Song" - after this the Beatles swipes get a bit too obvious. I like Dr. Dog more but I wanna be present for their set if possible.

Des Ark - The place to be at 10:10 on Friday night. Everytime I see or hear this rage-folk/rock singer, I wanna buy her a sandwich and a beer or something. And everytime I see her she's gotten more awesome and grown like 50 feet taller. huge ketch, not at all "soft rock", an original coming up for air, touched by God, etc. etc. "Jesus Loves You"

Bowerbirds - I've already expressed what passes for fealty these days to the headliner & we could have done so much worse but perhaps better - they'll certainly fill up drab and empty spaces with their pretty "soft rock" ness... Never seen them live so I'd be happy to hear what they do with fare such as "In Our Talons"

Monday, March 30, 2009

MacRock Revue #2: Just don't act like you've been here before just dance

yes, you will worship these fuckers

Hail Hydra - Points for the Marvel comic book ref. "Oil Seller" (342 plays on their Myspace page) kinda gives you the tingly feeling you get when your balls automagically shift in the sac and the pubes kinda tickle ya insides your underwears. I'll be elsewhere when they play but if I feel the earth shift a few notches, I'll know whom (or it who?) to blame.

MouthEater - anudder VAG band - makes me think this here MacRock has stacked the deck for the Sons of the Confederacy. Moutheater is the sorry howling of the smashed and rotten tomatoes lying on the floor of stage David Yow and Michael Gerard built in their garages with their 9-5 paychecks. You can't help but feel that this vocalist has already started building said stage and is looking forward to years of entertaining his nieces and nephews after doing their taxes. Which is to say I probably will truly like and respect this outfit and hate myself for doing so. See?

Mouthbreather - so right after Moutheater comes this Richmond crew and is it a coincidence or is something at play at some higher level of the universe? Wasn't Mouthbreather a Jesus Lizard song, too? Wow, because unlike Moutheater, Mouthbreather doesn't sound even remotely like Jesus Lizard more like an thrashy emo band lost somewheres in the mid to late 90's. So what gives, universe? Some other blog has an empty-3 for your collection if you don't beleeve me and want to make your own conclusions ref: general sucktitude of this vibe.

Tideland - Kelley Deal has huge fucking migraine headaches, so fucking huge, every bone aches just to make her brain feel like it won't explode and all that pain, she has to record that shit it runs off her brain in thick green blobs and she pushes it into a tiny tape machine (THAT REALISTIC thing she swiped from DAd cuz it had a handle and she used to bop down the street to it while chewing bubblegum) and it makes everything tinny and without that low and high end shit she can sleep at night knowing and she dreams then that she's got some band thing going and its going to be named after some Terry Gilliam flick she hated because it was so fucking cute and sad and stolen from her life and in the dream her band reaches its zenith opening for another scummy band in some scummier midwestern college town than the last one they played. In the middle of one of the songs, she remembers how she wants to kill her sister and replace her with some other sister that skinnier, more bitchy, less nice (maybe that other Kim) and doesn't flush her stash down the toilet at the gas station where they stopped to get gas and water and cigarettes and whirly pops - she's crying in the gas station and that chick at the cash register who used to play bass in Scrawl hands her a tissue. Its. So. Really. Bad...likethat. Or something. And if this band does "Shatterface" and if it doesn't sound too much like the Silversun Pickups then none of this ever happened.

Pygmy Lush - Tideland's Sterling, VA townmates jump right in next. Will they be emo's answer to White Zombie's second album [(and yes, emos, there is a need for an answer to Soul Crusher in I count at least 30 countries, so shut yer fat traps up and just, y'know deal with it or get into your fucking time machine and go write a song in 1989 that is better than "Godslayer", Q.E.D.)]... or will they be wearing their M. Ward asshats and singing into some vintage microphone aboot trains and shacks and the walking dead and wondering where they can buy a scarf or sumpin'. So... If yer Dad was a security guard at some black windowless building in the world's most powerful country, you'd probably do goofy shit like this, too. Band motto: "Slurp shit and die"...

Brainworms - the entire demo of 16-25 year olds from Richmond VA will prolly be in Harrisonburg next weekend. They will be pounding under mic'ed drums, getting cramps in their necks, standing around talking shit between sets, breaking guitar strings, making $16.50 at the merch table (which pays for gas, yay) and getting their whole I ain't gonna do drugs and drink likker vows tested. Hard. On Monday there will be much headaches and a full accounting. Many kitchen tables will be play host to streams of invective, grudges and complaints. Suicides, murders and even some guys will go gay. Rock is a fucking evil business you'd better know. You might as well learn how to read music and keep better time or just totally go do something else like knitting or soccer. "Born With a Beard " mp3 courtesy of Rorshack Records. Continental European tour begins in May.

Antlers - (not THE Antlers or Crystal Antlers you dimwitted fucks). So... What happend to Mass Movement of the Moth? Kinda liked them. I once asked myself this question in 2006. Or was it 2007? And then I drank a diet Coke. Considered a cheese snack. I think I turned on the TV. I sleeped walked that night (or should it be sleptwalked?) and found myself a choclate glazed donut filled with Reeces Pieces. I choked on the green piece until I realized there are no Reeses Pieces that are green so I must have been drugged. PRobably the diet Coke - who knows where it got it? Oh yeah, Richmond Virginia, hey I know that dude - he's in my journo class down at Virginia Commonwealth. He said the Fleet Foxes CD was shit and why was I wearing their t-shirt. I said it was better than anything he liked (Gwar, probably) ... ...fucker dosed me over some stupid band convo..."Catalpa " (again, thanks or not thanks to Rorshach Reccids ) and then I woke up in someone else's living room and played some X-box for awhile and went home in my boxers and t-shirt.

My Disco - (no, no, not My Dear Disco). Kenny Powers on My Disco: "Hey is this mic on? Yeah, shit. This is some of that post-punk minimalist shit that retards listen too. But even so, I cannot say how much the sustained single guitar chord stokes the buzz I got from this weed and coke. If I could put this tune behind that scene where Stevie smashes all those fire alarms at Jeff Davis High School, then my TV show would have been fucking perfect. Can't believe Australians made that shit." "You came to me like a cancer lain dormant until it blossomed like a rose " MP3 blatantly hotlinked via SXSW.

Young Widows - Tundra melodies for old Russian farmers who got fired from their position in the Army for drinking too much and bleeding in all the wrong places. They packed up their shit and moved to Siberia where they hunted wolves and slurped potato and leek soups into their toothless souls. They dreamed of fat Caddilacs and fags on Miami Beach retching out their silvery guts of all the octupus and cheese rind and sour wine. Dogs came to grin at them and they could feel the cold from the outlayer of the skin of their feet to their scab-ridden bald heads. Inside bars, they knocked themselves out playing Pac-Man and that other video game with the worms that came down on top of you. They would stumble out, rank of Husky dogpiss and peach mouthwash, watching flocks of moths rise and fall with the suns and moons. Their faces fell into the ground and there they remained until the next issue of Maxim dropped. That metal blog Brooklyn Vegan has told this story already so don't act like you believe me until you have been there, maaan.

MacRock Revue #1: Skateboards Optional

The joke of vodka fart in post was wery funny, comrade

Hey MACROCK is next weekend - Ima taking a listen to sumbitch of these bands, mosta I never heard of. I'm down in this post with that metal showcase on Friday night or whatever the kids are calling it these days:

-- Hard garage/new age outfit who cover Ms. Spears, Murder City Devils in between 'riginal ear-ripping 80'sish 'core and floaty instrumentals. Worth a trip to the Lucy Simms Boys and Girls Rec Center just to see if the merch table includes the 2005 split 7" they made with Daughter Of Ozzy. They've subtitled their act "Sonic Victimization Unit" uh so I'm guessing I should take along multiple pairs of ear plugs. Boat Day from 2004's Things To Do When You Should Be Dead Anyway courtesy Magic Bullet Record... you could start your night in worse places.

Inter Arma - In H-burg, necks and hair will gyre and gimble, peni will be poorly mimsy, pus heads into waiting borogrove mouths of brillig momes and slithery guitars will shred the slithy toves. Richmond has a toxic reason to raise their heads only slightly higher than they are now. '

'bout this time I'm expecting to be leaving the jernt for other "showcases" but here's my honest impressions of some of the other bands:

A Cosmonauts Ruin - Question: What are vodka farts? Answer: A cosmonaut's ruin. Har. Har. Uh. Make up your own, dudez it's funn. Comes now this edge o' abyss sci-fi-fantasy hardsplore. Oh yay. Uh, from Richmond - once and future home of The Prevaricators so its got some claim to metalcore umma I guess. To quoth a Myspace pal of theirs: "Those songs are just straight brute and smell of old spice that only the manliest of men can wear."

Music Hates You - They're from alternate reality Athens GA where Athens GA is actually Detroit and its '69. About the most metal of the bunch. They have two cuts up on their webbysite and while I'm not gonna rush to their table for T-shirts or anything, I imagine if I'm present I'll be banging my head like the rabid cocker spaniels this music was meant to torment.

The Devil and The Sea -- I would have named my band something more ludicrous like The Devil and The Sex or The Devil and the Cupcake but then I woulda missed the oh so not so subtle reference to the mash-up of black worship with wayfaring chanteys. Haul that line, raise the sale and kiss that demon's ass, drink some urine sorta thing going... "Monolith " curtsey of label Acerbic Noise .

Black Tusk - isn't it weeeird how when you get closer and closer to the headliner in a "metal showcase" you get more hate, more disgust, more unfunny and that's not just from the bands? So chuggy it makes me shruggy. And I guess Black Tusk is easier to say than Black Rhino but the latter is an only slightly cooler name, is it not? Say something positive. Well. It sooths me heart that children such as this were never taken under Sally Struthers helpful wing and taught to mind their manners and shave their beards. That esteemed metal fan Brooklyn Vegan* helpfully links (how unmetal of them) to their SXSW mp3 - so like dig. Or don't.

*Yes, I know its not REALLy Brooklyn Vegan.

I am true Cosmonaut's ruin