Bob Log III at Talking Head 5/19 $10

Posted in Upcoming Shows with tags , , , , , , on May 19, 2009 by dillonator

bob log

Are you tired of Daft Punk’s sterile, European take on the helmet aesthetic?

Are you tired of stirring your liquor with a swizzle stick?

Are you tired of girls with dirty nipples?

Well, if you answered yes to any of these questions, or if you’ve been drinking heavily, may I humbly suggest you spend your Tuesday night at the Bob Log III show at the Talking Head?  The nipples are only gonna get dirtier, but at least they’ll be in someone else’s scotch.

Bob Log III, one-man boom band, has forged a reputation as the world’s foremost delta blues punk sleazeball, a reputation he has earned by combining his keen slide guitar skills and ambidextrous feet with an uncanny ability to get women to put their shit on his leg.

Did I say one-man band?  That’s not necessarily true.  He sometimes has a backup band consisting of two women and four clapping tits.

It would be easy to dismiss Mr. Log as a gimmick, but his unique sound is just as much a product of a talent honed touring with legendary bluesman R.L. Burnside as it is his home-made kickdrums and telephone/microphone vocal distorter.  Granted, he has about as much in common with Mojo Nixon as with Mississippi Fred McDowell, but it’s in finding the common ground that makes him so unique.  That, and the chesticular rhythm section.

Tom Waits likened Log’s music to”[gluing] macaroni on to a piece of cardboard and [painting] it gold.”  Coming from anyone else, that would probably sound like an insult, but somehow I think Waits meant it in awe.

Decide for yourself Tuesday night at the Talking Head.  Just make sure to wash your boob first.

Advertisements

World/Inferno Friendship Society Concert Review

Posted in Concert Reviews with tags , , , , on April 26, 2009 by dillonator
world/inferno friendship society

photo: polstarphotography.com

I didn’t really know what to expect from the World/Inferno Friendship Society.  I went there on a recommendation from a friend, and a fairly ambivalent recommendation at that.  But I watched some videos online, read some background info, and felt like they could be interesting.

How could I not have been into these guys?  They call themselves “circus punk!”  Could it be any more up my alley?

Frontman Jack Terricloth’s Sinatra-as-vampiric-protopunk mesmerized the audience with lyrics alternatively growled and howled (Nick Cave was 13 when Terricloth was born; is it possible for a 13-year-old to father a child?), while behind him, his tight sixpiece-tonight band rollicked from klezmer to waltz with the fury of the Stooges and the horn section of Dexy’s Midnight Runner.

Like I said, I didn’t know exactly what to expect, so it was by sheer luck that I happened to be near the back of the Ottobar last night when Terricloth hit the stage.  Had I been just a few feet closer to the stage, I would have been trampled by the sudden rush of punks in a shovy mood.  Never have I seen such a sudden, synchronized moshpit.

That should have been my first warning: these were the Infernites.

What was particularly cool about the show was the audience participation.  World Inferno has a following that could easily be described as cult-like:  one kid I met at the show claimed it was his 50th time seeing them live, and a quick glance at their forum shows how much of a community they are, with rides and sleeping arrangements being organized online.  With all this in mind, it’s little wonder that the crowd acted like they did.

I felt like I was at a midnight showing of the Rocky Horror Picture Show.  Without any cues from the band, audience members would all perform certain dances during certain songs, form a circle during others, and thrash their damn brains out during others.  The unexpected highlight for me was when the crowd suddenly paired up and started waltzing, couples crashing into each other in a whirling frenzy, like a drunken Muppets sketch.

And, at one point, I’m pretty sure I saw someone throw some money into the circle of death.  Was he trying to play craps?  Pretty awesome.

Check out the live video of “Me vs. Angry Mob,” taking special note of Terricloth’s sweet moves at 2:40.  You’ll be running for Hallowmas in no time.

How do you like the new banner?

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , on April 24, 2009 by dillonator

blogbanner

I just added a new banner to the site because, frankly, it looked like shit before.  Amateurish may be a better word.  What do you think?  The flag is pretty self-explanatory; it should’ve taken about 6 minutes to make, but maryland flagwound up taking me about 3 hours because I suck with Photoshop.  I was considering making the red & yellow bits crossed quarter notes, so it would look more like the original flag, but decided against it.  I think it looks good, but maybe less obviously Maryland.  Thoughts?

The tagline, I’m kind of iffy about.  “Because you’ve never even heard of those guys” is a fairly good middle ground between explanatory and catchy, but I’m not convinced yet.  I was also considering “…that band,” but it doesn’t have the same ring to it; “them” is probably less explanatory AND less charming.

“Your guide to upcoming shows in the Baltimore area” ?

“I watch youtube so you don’t have to!” ?

There are lots of options.  I’ll never be satisfied.

As for the text color, originally it was that same ugly mustard yellow as the flag, which I liked, but it doesn’t match well with the rest of the site’s orange text.  I guess I could make the banner that mustard, and the text black…but I fear the mustard only works well in small doses.

Finally, flag placement.  I put it on the left, but it looks silly to have the text all the way over on the right side.  I tried putting a flag on each side and the text in the middle but it didn’t work out, and I thought about putting two-three flags in a row, and the text at the top, but that also didn’t appeal.  Does the side-heavy picture draw your eyes off?  I think I’m going to move it to the right, see what happens.

I’d really appreciate some feedback, I’ve never done this kind of thing before and I feel like a chump.

EOTO at Hour Haus 3/24 $20 ALL YOU CAN DRINK (BYOB optional)

Posted in Upcoming Shows with tags , , , , , , on March 24, 2009 by dillonator

eoto1

Michael Travis and Jason Hann formed EOTO (rhymes with Kyoto) after the semi-dissolution of their previous band, jam-scene heavyweights String Cheese Incident.

While SCI has always had a foot in the electronic door, their music tended to gravitate more towards funky bluegrass, towards country jazz…EOTO all but forsakes that tradition in favor of a percussive jamtronic beatstorm, taking the audience down a fully-improvised rabbit hole.

This, in fact, is what makes EOTO so unique. SCI never shied away from improvisation, of course, but EOTO takes the “jam” concept one step further: all music is put together the night of, live in front of you.  It is mastered, mixed, and remixed, as  it is being created.  This is the sort of collaboration only two masters of their trade could pull off, and even then only with years of working with, and off, each other.

Hann was a late addition to SCI, supplementing Travis as an auxiliary percussionist, as Travis had already been pushing envelopes as drummer for the group…and I use the word “drummer” loosely, as he is known for experimenting with as many styles and percussors as he could find.  He must be excited to get to perform with guitars, bass etc.

Opening are locals Segway and Stushido; I’ve heard good things about Segway, and nothing about Stushido, but don’t let that turn you off.  Performing in between sets is dubstep DJ Marm0set, and hey, if you get hungry, Joe Squared is right next door, and they have some of the most interesting pizzas you’ll find in Baltimore…not to mention a fabulous beer selection.

Richie Havens at Rams Head OnStage 3/22 $35

Posted in Upcoming Shows with tags , , , , on March 21, 2009 by dillonator

richie-havens1

He was the first act to play Woodstock.

Isn’t that rad?

He replaced Mary Travers, and formed Peter, Paul, and Richie.

That’s kinda weird actually…but still kinda rad.

The good news is, Richie Havens is coming to Rams Head in Annapolis on Sunday.

The bad news is, at some point in the 40 years since Woodstock, he got fake teeth.

Havens achieved worldwide notoriety following his  encore-laden performance at that New York farm; though he was mostly known for his song covers (most notably Bob Dylan or the Beatles), after he ran out of songs, he improvised the now-anthemic “Freedom,” based on the slave spiritual “Motherless Child.”  That spur-of-the-moment stomper became one of the songs that defined Woodstock; some would say an entire generation.

Now almost 70, Havens continues his storied career.  With 28 albums behind him, he’s performed at 1969’s Isle of Wight, the first Glastonbury Festival in 1970, and numerous other groundbreaking festivals; he performed at President Clinton’s inauguration; he’s starred in several films and plays, including the original production of the Who’s Tommy; and is one of only two performers to be asked to perform on two consecutive nights by Johnny Carson (the other was Barbra Streisand, of course).

I’m curious as to how many people at Sunday’s show saw him perform 39 years, 7 months, 8 days, 2 hours, and 23 minutes earlier.

If you didn’t, relive it below…

Death Set @ Ottobar tonight (3/13) $10

Posted in Upcoming Shows with tags , , , , on March 13, 2009 by dillonator

deathset1

For those of you not interested in getting silly with Gregg Gillis, may I offer an alternative?  Or, if you’re feeling sassypants, an afterparty?

The Death Set, formerly of Baltimore, and before that Australia, will be making the trek from distant Philadelphia to destroy their old stamping grounds with their unique mix of snot-nosed punkisms and electronic bleep-bloop-itudes.

Also, I often see “Death Set” in the same sentence as “spazzy.”

Expect to be eye-to-eye with the ground-level pounders.  Expect to drape your arms around Beau Velasco and Johnny Siera and sing along to “Around the World.”  Expect to have a good time.

They were Baltimore City Paper’s Best Live Band of 2007.  UK’s NME magazine called them the “#1 biggest hope of the future.”

They’re coming home.  Buy ’em a Boh.

Opening are similarly-minded noise rockers Team Robespierre, hip-hopping Death Set remixers Ninjasonik, poorly-named New Yorkers Cerebral Ballzy, and upbeat party maestro Totally Michael.

Sidenote: I totally love Totally Michael.  He’s like Andrew W.K., but without all the yelling.  His songs are about birthday parties, 90’s computer games, and high school clique rivalries (but in a good way!).  He makes smiles.  He’s a machine, you input corny keyboard hooks, he outputs smiles.

Girl Talk @ Loyola Friday 3/13 $20

Posted in Upcoming Shows with tags , , , , , on March 11, 2009 by dillonator

girl_talk_4

Mash-up maestro Girl Talk will take over Loyola College Friday night at 9PM as part of the school’s “Late Night” program.

Needless to say, this is probably the only remotely interesting thing going on as part of the school’s “Late Night” program.

There is also a Loyola Battle of the Bands earlier that evening, which is, of course, part of the school’s “Late Night” program.

Is anyone interested in karaoke?  There is a monthly karaoke event at Loyola, as part of the school’s “Late Night” program.

Pittsburgh native Girl Talk, née Gregg Gillis,  sounds like DJ Z-Trip stopped taking his meds, started listening to Dem Franchise Boyz, and began bathing in a mixture of glow-stick juice and Red Bull.  His epileptic live shows are the stuff of phosphorescent legend, having converted throngs at Bonnaroo, Langerado, Virgin Festival, as well as more intimate locations, such as October’s sold-out show at Sonar.

Specializing in smushing a dozen or more tracks into three minutes of music, Girl Talk blends as wide a variety of songs as you’ll find anywhere.  I won’t waste my time providing examples;  you name it, he’s set it to a Phil Collins beat and interspersed it with Mike Jones lyrics.

Unfortunately, what could have been the crowning moment in his awesomely absurd (absurdly awesome?) career fell through last July.  His live collaboration with Baltimore’s King of Hipster Cool Dan Deacon and Spank Rock, Crown Prince of, I dunno, Vaginas? was cancelled due to the weather/police.   The one-time-only supergroup, dubbed Who Is the Tunafish Man?, was to play Whartscape’s 2:00AM (read 4:00AM) set, but a lack of permits shuttered them, as well as Cex and DJ Dog Dick.

Only four months later, Girl Talk’s Harvard University gig was cut short due to safety concerns. Hopefully, Loyola kids are a little more respectful.

But not too much more.

Hey, look!  The coolest professor in the world!

By the way, much respect goes out to Loyola’s SGA.  Not only did they book Girl Talk, a bit of a risk for a college, they had Lupe Fiasco play there in the Fall, and Citizen Cope is set to play the annual Loyolapalooza in the Spring.

When I was in college, the biggest event of four years was Nappy Roots, and Loyola gets Girl Talk.  As part of the school’s “Late Night” program.