Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Let the battle begin....

WOW, 2007 was full of incredible talent. It can be easy to forget all the awesomeness until you are looking back at the details of it all. It will be a hard decision this year.... I'm sorting it out slowly (pausing to reminisce along the way).

Here are the categories we used from last year.... (you can see last years winners here...)



The first categorical battle (best new band or debut album) manifested itself this past weekend when I saw Diagonals and White Denim play a quaint birthday party at OK Mountain Gallery. Here they are, two of my favorite new bands, performing in what was probably one of my favorite galleries this year at E.A.S.T. It was LOUD, it was gritty, it was unconventional, and it was just the punch I needed this December; I LOVED IT. I had an ear-to-ear grin between my busted ringing eardrums. The two bands are so talented with loads of potential and momentum to take them roaring into 2008. It may have to be a tie, cause I can't choose one (can you?).

THE DIAGONALS! (from left Todd (drums), Steve G (vox), Ryan (gtr)... not shown Wiley W (kybd), a new bass player that I forgot his name oops sorry)


WHITE DENIM (Bop - Terry - Mallard)!

Monday, December 03, 2007

Looking back and stepping ahead....

Wow, I can't believe 07 is almost over. F*&#in Sh*t

Well, I would have to say this has certainly been one of the more crazy (and busy) years of life. In a rough estimate I've personally seen over 65 music shows/events (most with 3 bands playing), played in 6ish derby bouts, attended 3 (or was it 4) music festivals, and heard countless hours of local music recorded for my enjoyment. Hey look, I'm still standing (though there was that incident that needed crutches).

In the coming weeks Dg and I will begin reflecting on the "Best of' 07's". If you have any suggestions, we'd love to hear them. We're going to work on getting live music from our fave's in this month.

I think..... 08 is going to rock! There are a couple of new new new bands that I'm really excited to follow in the new year.... Follow That Bird!, The Black & White Years, Ct. Dracula.... Then there are those which we know, but don't play that much... Low Line Caller, Belaire, The Diagonals... and of course my trusty old favorites.... Octopus Project, Horse+Donkey, Lemurs, Peel, Strange Boys....

*sigh* it's a wonderful life (a crazy one, but crazy wonderful)

Sunday, November 25, 2007

dulce por las orejas (Ear Candy)

I was thrilled to sub for Ear Candy, a show for "deliciously sweet indie pop", on KOOP while regular host (reigning indie pop diva) Lace Durant was out of town. She promised me a slice of grandma's homemade pie, but she had me at "indie pop". Sometimes I wish I had a freeform show, to be able to play more music I find and enjoy, so this was a chance to break out of my "local scene box" (of course I still ended up playing a local set... haha... i guess you can take the girl away from local but blah blah blah....). It was awesome combing through our music for indie pop. Gina Pina needs to do and oldies show, and she could probably do a world music show too. I played a few older tracks I hadn't heard in a long time, and played a few with people in mind (respectively). It ended up being more of a mellow pop set than anything; the french set was awesome and even warranted a "way-to-go" caller. I had a superb time, again reaffirming why I love radio. (oh and I had around 30 internet listeners, so suck it prp...just kidding!!!).
I forgot to bring a tape or record it, so .... fuck...
Here's the setlist in case you missed the wonder....

Yo La Tengo - Winter A Go Go

Jane Birkin - Harvet Moon

Hidden Cameras - Wanning Moon

Flight of the Conchords - Foux Da Fa Fa

Whizzzz! comp

Ces Bottes Sont Faites Pour Marcher (These Boots Are Made for Walking) - Eileen

Serge Gainsborg - L'Anamour

Smokey & Miho - Blue Glasses

Yellow Fever - Culver City

Peel - Navy Waves

Octopus Project - Queen

Belaire - You Really Got Me Going

Adam Green - Times are Bad

Belle & Sebastian - Get me Away From Here I'm Dying

Viva Voce - Mixtape=Love

Stephen Malkmus - Deado

American Analog Set - Kindness of a Stranger

The Unicorns - 2014

Scout Niblett - Makku Ni Mauro

Animal Collective - Derek

Panda Bear - Ponytail

Graham Coxon - Where'd You Go

Low Line Caller - Over the Counter Kids

Final Fantasy - Adventure.exe

Blur - The Universal

mmmmmmmmmmmmmm pie

Friday, November 16, 2007


Holy Cannolli!
My favorite band (one of my deserted island picks) The Octopus Project is finally home from a very very very extended tour and they are playing TONIGHT at Emo's. I've had their new album, Hello, Avalanche, on heavy rotation. I love it! I think last time I wrote about it my favorite was "Ghost Moves", a heavy metal octopus, but now I am listening to "Bees Been Strugglin" alot.

Additionaly, one of my local fav's, Horse+Donkey, is opening. WOW! Two favs in one night, my head might explode. I can tell you this... "the dance party never stops"!

I've got to keep a semi-straight head though, because I'm waking up early tomorrow (for skate practice... sk8 sk8 sk8) and to venture out into the East Austin Studio Tour - EASTside! I'm so excited, damn straight, I've been awaiting this event for MONTHS! I'm going to Obsolete Inc., Bearded Lady, Splinter Group, Pump Project, Bolm Studios, Handsomely Brothers?, and sooooo much more. Get your bike geared up, that's how we roll. It's Saturday AND Sunday.

As if there wasn't already enough awesomeness occuring this weekend, Saturday night Black Moth Super Rainbow plays at Emo's with Aesop Rock and Blochead!

I'll say it again.... HOLY CANNOLLI!!!!!!

Thursday, November 08, 2007

E.A.S.T. Preview Party!

So, I don't have a Fun Fun Fun Fest recap. There are good recaps here... (Austinist)

Next weekend is one of my favorite weekend's in Austin events, the East Austin Studio Tour. E.A.S.T. (acronym for it's namesake) began 3 years ago with just under 80 studios participating. This year there are over 100 studios, featuring over 200 artists! Gina Pina and I have usually taken full advantage of the weekend; bicycling from out eastside home to studios near and far. Bicycling is the ONLY way to see this festival. SURE you could drive from studio to studio, but its so much better cycling your way around the east side to truly take in all the sights, sounds, smells, dogs....

I organized a preview party to highlight some of the artists, plus feature live music from Ct. Dracula's Weed Smugglin Jam Engine (see my recent review of them) and Basic (one of my local pop fav's). Monday November 12th @ Emo's Lounge. You should come! for details

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Gypsy Punk Rock!

If you missed Gogol Bordello, you missed the biggest party Austin had to offer this October. tsk tsk This has been the only show I've been to in a LONG time (I'm talking a looooooong time) where the entire crowd was "into" the show. Everyone was dancing, clapping, gypsy punk rocking, and having a great time. THESE are the best kinds of shows. (nothing more that I hate than people at shows being vegetables or talkative a-holes). My friend, Todd (seen below), was perfect example of what a great night of gypsy punk rock can do, pure enjoyment.
If you missed it, it was probably because Gogol Bordello was quickly sold out, and for good reason. Me, Gina, Sean and my awesome teammate Lucille Brawl all held fast to an "intense" crowd full of sweat and cheers. Sure people pushed by to get to the front, but just as many people pushed to get out for a breathe of air and we had a great time jumping around to the always entertaining Ukrainian Punk Rocker!
If only every show could be this entertaining.

My Gogol Gang (left)
Eugene Hütz (right)

Just another reason Emo's is one of my favorite venues; that same show at other "large" venues just wouldn't have been the same (who else would tolerate all the punk-asses and broken glasses?). :-)

Now for....NEW MUSIC
I recently happened upon some new music. Deidre and I ventured over to the Carousel Lounge saturday night to see local power pop trip, Basic. We rarely hit Carousel, but the place has awesome vibe, plus is BYOL (not that we needed that). Basic had the whole crowd dancing too, and even singing alongOpening was "Count Dracula and his Weed Smuggling Jam Engine"

(try saying that 3 times fast, or better yet try fitting that on your marquee or poster). I'd heard the name, but hadn't heard the sound, so we were pleasantly surprised to hear a group of talented musicians. Now, the singer, he was a bit on the awkward side (nothing wrong with that... Keep Austin Weird man), but his constant pacing made me a bit uncomfortable. If I were this guy, I'd be scared.....

Preston Dukes - guitarist/weed smuggler (right)
Ct. Dracula?? (left)

In addition to great jams, the innovative group had a live 8-track reel-to-reel running to record the show LIVE (ohhhh you know I love it already) and several video cameras running to record "surveillance" (as they called it). A very interesting group that I am looking forward to seeing again (and maybe again).
Are you going to FaFaFunfest? I don't know if I'm gonna shell out the money. *sigh*
more later.....

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

WHOA horsey!

Jumpin gee willickers, I've seen TONS of good local (and touring) music the past few weeks. So, apologies for the long update. It's been a musical rollercoaster, and I just got off to puke. (I think I'll get back on it this weekend though - I'm a glutton for punk-ishment).

FIRST was Gito Gito Hustler, all girl Japanese Punk Rock. Really, you can't go wrong, right? Dg, Gina Pina and I scarfed down some eastside comida then hit the "love-n-roll". Some Hotrod Honeys met up to make the all-girl evening even cuter.

(photos by gina pina)

The Diagonals may be my new favorite local band; at least live. I know I know I know, I say that about EVERY band. (and yes, I've been told I have too many favorites... but suck it, these guys rock and are movin up my list). Equipped with two new members, and fresh off of my very own KOOP Benefit (and birthday party) the Diagonals have fined tuned their rock-i-ness and deliver it will smiles and soul. I highly suggest you check the next show out (or two or three). (not to mention, the somewhat passe "hey that's wiley wiggins - the dude from Dazed & Confused" reference - so ladies, if you want to bear his children apparently it's ok to come out and scream it to the world) No word yet on recordings or record releases, but the live shows seem to be "where it's at."

OK, now really, for reals, honestly, Horse +Donkey IS one of my favorite local bands. (what? shut up - I can have at least 3 favorites). I've seen them, hmmmm, 3 times in the past few weeks. My first show at new-ish local venue, Lamberts. I don't know if it was me, the stintch of BBQ, the obviously tired band or the overall "atmosphere", but it was not my best experience. None-the-less a great show, aurally, from H+D.

Then we see them close out the evening of a fundraising party at Rhizome Collective, which luckily is right near my house. A bottle of tequila and short bike ride later, I'm swept off into the musical bliss that only Horse+Donkey can provide. (like a drug, you should try it sometime... $5 a hit).
Lastly, to my pleasant surprise, H+D plays inside while I get ready for the Gypsy Punk Rock Party (that is gogol bordello) at Emo's. I notice that I've seen this guy (aka - Jason Callahan of 'i eat records') at quite a few Horse+Donkey shows lately. Word on "the street" is there is a Horse+Donkey LP (ahem, does that mean vinyl???) on the way?

be back soon with more info on .....Basic

Count Dracula & Some Weed Smuggling


Wednesday, October 17, 2007

New Music Week!

WOW - two major releases from two of my favorite bands this week, and they've been on heavy rotation. I am flooded with new music; it makes me sooooo happy. One's not local, but whatever..... First is the brand new album (3rd) from The Octopus Project, "Hello, Avalanche". Still true to their roots, The Octopus Project produces another instrumental masterpiece, mixing distorted guitar, frantic layerd drums, and of course the beloved Theremin. Yvonne has really mastered this ability (have you ever TRIED to play a theremin, it is NOT easy) and she shows off her award winning talent superbly. Fav track so far... hmmm... "Ghost Moves" but it could and probably will change many many times. You can pick up this new album from the local record shop, online at or at their upcoming show at Emo's on November 16th.

Second is the brand new album (7th) from Radiohead, "In Rainbows". Instantly this album became popular due to it's unusual distribution method. "In Rainbows" at first will only be available online, and fans can "pay what they wish". They mean it too, you can download it from When you order the album online it has a blank space to enter your price. You can pay $0 (except there IS a $1 credit card fee) or you can pay $10 (about what I ended up paying... 5.5 pounds?). Current controversy is fans being upset over the low quality of the digital downloads and cries of "promotional schemeing/lying". In my opinion, they didn't HAVE to pay for it and I don't know if I'd hear a difference in quality. You are listening to the music, right?!?! All promotional distribution antics aside though, this is ANOTHER stellar release from one of my long time favorite bands. It includes songs that I've heard from Live performances in the past (i.e. 'Big Ideas' which is now called "NUDE" and a verse short but still one of my faves). Plus they add new material that continues to keep Radiohead innovating above and beyond popular rock music. Fav track so far.... "Jigsaw Falling Into Place".

These two things have made an otherwise stressful crappy week bearable. Who is releasing new music next week???

Monday, October 08, 2007

Sonic Youth realizes they are not in tune!

It was the best of times; it was the worst of times. The place was packed by the time Meat Puppets started. Most of the crowd was wondering why this band on stage covered Nirvana so much (haha idiots). Who was allowed to book a private party inside Stubb's during Sonic Youth rendering inside bathrooms off limits? There was a 50 person line for the Port-A-Johns (ew) and the Stubb's water coolers were emptied before the show started..tsk tsk. Gina tracked down an employee to make them refill them, though I never saw the likes of them as I rushed to get a good spot.

The stage front at Stubb's was a mixture of show-going chatty assholes and uber-fans, with the still heat sparing no one. I positioned myself near the front right speakers next to good friend/show mate, Doug (Austin Sound); perfect distance to somewhat see and record (shhhh). The dense crowd poured sweat and cheers, sure to not let the heat get them down. This guy in particular (see below) made my show experience more enjoyable, literally “rocking out” the entire time! Thanks dude. I much prefer the tall guy blocking my way but enjoying the show to the short dude behind me chatting the whole time about his new car/job/blahblahblah oblivious to the music he PAID to see.

How on earth does Thurston Moore still look like a teenager? (Whiskey Tango’s )

Where does Kim buy all of her sparkly tops? (Austinist)

And just how many guitar techs do 30 guitars require? (Austinist)

(my best picture of Thurston)

Sonic Youth rips out another amazing 80+ minute set, featuring gems from old and new (my personal fav being “Jams Run Free” and Sonic Youth STOPPING to TUNE before Bull In the Heather…. Gina said “Since when does Sonic Youth stop to tune???). Among the numerous “woooooos” (how did this become a native Texas show call???) I overhear hilarious conversations such as, “Who needs the Rolling Stones when we have Sonic Youth” (kudos brother), “Play some Skynard” (yea idiot, they’re going to skip “Incinerate” for fucking Free Bird), and of course my sister’s timeless “That left me Thurston for Moore”. (hahahaha you’re so punny gina pina)

How the hell does Thurston Moore still look like a teenager? (Austinist)

After a disappointing 2nd encore fake-out we venture inside for the “after party” with PEEL!

Elated to have Josh P. back from his PEEL absentee, we top the night off with our fav songs and a few new tunes from local darlings. A triple bill that kept me entertained from 8pm-1am, nice indeed.

Friday, October 05, 2007

Wall Of Sound

I can't believe we didn't blog about Wall Of Sound immediately after it happened (it's taken us this long to recover really). We had an incredible weekend. Danny, Deidre and I shacked up in a pimp hotel in Downtown Dallas Friday night drinking and eating Sal's Pizza! Then met up with Jennifer the next morning for a full day of music in the ball park.

The venue set-up seemed superb, with great parking, three stages, and drinks in the parking lot before the Lemurs begun our afternoon with a splendid set; sadly the last with Keyboardist Sean Conner. (you will be missed my friend).

Then a dreamy set by Austin locals, Tack's the Boy Disaster, who ironically we never catch locally. The main stage was set so perfectly so when one band finished on stage 1, stage 2 immediatley began to rock out.

Thanks to the Lemurs Dg, Jenn and I had supreme backstage access. We rocked out all afternoon with Ghosthustler, The Paper Chase (a personal fave), Black Tie Dynasty, and Brothers and Sisters.

A surprise audio gliche (or the supreme rockin twang of Brother Wills voice) unfortunately knocked the audio out for a songs lengthm but no sooner could we grab another beer then they had it back up and running.

Local vendor booths provided entertainment (and booze) for the masses and by mid-afternoon Dg and I were, well... (see below). :-) White Denim was a day favorite for me, as it was my FIRST time to see the Austin Trio. Engaging the whole crowd, and even inviting a audience member on-stage, the gents' rocked the crowd to it's core.

The evening ended oddly, and between audio mix-ups and delayed stage set-ups the three headliners, Ghostland Observatory, Midlake, and Explosions in the Sky were left with lethargic fans and shortened sets. Overall though the festival was a HUGE success. Kudos and hats off to Lance Yocom, orchestrator of the event. We hope you continue to bless Fort Worth with a Wall of Sound.
It was a long road home to Austin, but we're glad to be back in our own beautiful city. HOORAY AUSTIN!

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Yo La Tengo talks about Nuclear War!

We don't update this blog enough, and I'm personally sick of using Myspace. So, here is my attempt to start fresh and add content...... *ahem*

YO LA TENGO - w/ The Black @ The Parish - Monday Sept. 17th

Saturday afternoon, when returning from working in Dallas which kept me from participating in the ACL fiasco this year, I sat at the airport waiting for my sister. As always, I was rocking out on my headphones, when I glanced over and saw a man standing with guitars. Shortly after the gang of Yo La Tengo stood next to me. I was twitterpatted and unsure of what to do (do I wave, go talk to them, ask for a picture, bother with an autograph?!?... omg I'm such a nerd). I pulled my nerves together and decided to at least say hi, besides I wouldn't be seeing them at ACL. I scoot over and nervously exclaim "I don't want to take up your time, but want to say HI and Thank You!" (insert nervous gushing here). We chat about their upcoming shows at ACL, The Alamo Drafthouse and The Parish, and also about KOOP Radio. I give him my KOOP button (always have a KOOP button handy, I give em out like candy). He looks at it and says "K-O-O-P? I think we've been to this radio station. Is it the one on the top floor somewhere downtown, like 6th street?". HOLY CRAP! I can't believe he was at the old KOOP station. I give him the short story about the fire, and quickly snap a picture cheering "I'll see you on Monday!".

Monday night Gina and I get ready for the show, dubbing a bootleg cassette tape of the Yo La Tengo w/ Jad Fair show from Emo's 2005 we recorded (we even decorated the case). We get to The Parish to find a SOLD OUT show. Luckily, Barry (a good friend and frequent music scener) and a stranger had extra tickets we could buy (thanks guys!). As soon as we get in we see Ira at the merch booth. Gina looks around and buys a button, while I gather courage to give him our cassette tape gift. He is thrilled and grateful for the cassette tape, proclaiming, "Ohhh, a cassette tape, how neat, our car has a cassette tape player even!" I ask what the chances are they'll play "Nuclear War". He contemplates it for a while, but seems into the idea and says he'll think about it.

photo by gina pina

The show was fantastic! Ira went crazy on guitar, while James and Georgia kept a steady beat going for us to move to, "The Room Got Heavy" was a fav for the night, and Yo La Tengo plays for over 2 hours! At the first encore they come out and say something like "This is for the old Jazz Nuts", and play none-other than their radical cover of "Nuclear War". The crowd screams "It's a mother-fucker.... nuclear war... if you push that button.... your ass will be gone.... and whatcha gonna do without your ass.... you'll be assless... goodbye". A second stunning encore, with requests played on demand straight from the crowd completes an amazing evening, well worth the time and money! YAY YO LA TENGO!

On a side note, I would like to rant shortly about how disrespectful so many people in Austin are at shows. HEY - A$$HOLE, if you're gonna talk about your job, new shoes, going on a date, your dinner etc etc etc, then go to the BACK (or go home)! Don't stand in front and gab the whole time; we came for the music NOT for your stupid banter. k, thanks

Hope you enjoyed the recap. We'll try to be regular about these, but I can't promise that booze induced music nights won't take their toll on our memories.



Now Playing Austin

91.7fm KOOP Radio