November 26, 2007

"When My Dad Died the Worms Ate Out Both His Eyes."

So Julio had this little contest where he offered up 2 tickets and a 7" featuring Manchester Orchestra covering an Annuals song on one side, and Annuals covering a Manchester Orchestra song on the other. Two people responded, and neither of them sent Julio their name and address so, since Julio knew I knew one of the responders, he just put the tickets under my name and asked me if I could go and tell him how it was. I could, so I did, and it was awesome.

See my write up of the show over at his blog. I've got about 7 mp3's hosted, which all garner your attention

Hope your Thanksgiving was rad.

November 18, 2007

"I Love You Inside and Out"

Last Wednesday I received 2 free tickets to Feist, so I my buddy JJ ventured on down to the Ogden to see what our girl Leslie had to offer. I hadn't been to the Ogden since my Metal days (or, if you prefer, Metal Daze [Julio knows what I'm talking about ;) ]), so I was all ready expecting this to be a weird night. We got to the theater just in time to get a drink and get down in front, where I ran into a friend, Mackenzie, and her friend, Lindy, and within a minute my group of just JJ and I grew to 6 people (the extra 2 were just 2 random guys who were kind of cool at first) ... all of which rather stoked to see Feist. After a small amount of small talk, Jason Collett took the stage.

I was expecting that, since Jason, much like Leslie, hailed from Broken Social Scene, Jason's set would border on spectacular. In reality, it bordered on mediocre. It's sad when I'm more entertained by an act's stories about the songs than i am with their songs, but not as sad as the fact that the highlight of his set was when Feist came out and played drums. When the highlight of your set is when someone else is on the stage, then we've got trouble. It wasn't bad, but I just don't want to get caught up in the whole "hype them because they came from an amazing band and might be better later" cycle that I have been known to get into. I just wasn't that impressed.

Feist took the stage after a short wait doing her signature vocal looping effect while behind a white sheet, her silhouette matching that of the cover of The Reminder. After that, she stepped out, received the crowd, and began the next song as all the lights went out and two lights hit a disco ball, filling the Ogden with a most magical feeling. After that song the stage lights were brought back up and a shadow-puppeteer person located off stage made little shadow interpretations of Feist's songs which were projected onto the back of the stage. It was pretty much business as usual for Feist and her crew from the point on. At one point someone screamed out "Inside and Out!" and Feist played it, which encouraged everyone else to start screaming out the name of the song that they wanted to hear. I couldn't help myself, so I screamed out "Lovertits!" (a song Leslie did with Peaches, then re-did with Gonzales). This act, something JJ referred to as "obscure at best," caused everyone around me to look at me as though I'd just said something very sexist. To their confusion, Leslie laughed, played a few bars and sang a few lyrics from Lovertits, then laughed some more, and went into the next song. I was happy :).

But by the end of the night, I felt a little unfulfilled. I don't know what it is, because when I listen to live sets and studio recordings and remixes, I love Feist's work, but live ... everything just seemed half-hearted and not fully developed. I got the feeling that Feist has some growth to do still. But I'm happy I went either way. Here's a reason for you to be happy:

Band: Feist
Date: 2005-06-21
Venue: KCRW

Secret Heart
Honey (Tears)
Now At Last
Let It Die
Inside and Out

After the show JJ, Mackenzie, Lindy and I took a little trip to Pete's Kitchen to reflect on the show and get some awesome food. It was a great night made better by a show and by friends.

November 8, 2007

"But The Things You Do For Love Are Going To Come Back To You One By One"

Aesop Rock feat. John Darnielle - Coffee:

As many of you who read this blog with any amount of regularity may know, I'm pretty heavily obsessed with the Mountain Goats, and on Tuesday, I finally got a chance to see them live. Ever since I heard the Coroner's Gambit, The Mountain Goat's 2000 release, I was hooked. John Darnielle's hilarious awkwardly worded lyrics reminding me of me, his voice sounding all too much like that of Jim Henson's (to me at least), who, like many other people, was an integral part of my childhood, and the inventive topics and stories he sang about all gave him an easy access card to my heart, one that has not been revoked, and probably won't be for quite some time. John Darnielle and his posse coming to Denver has been loooong awaited.

This show really introduced me to an unknown aspect of why I enjoy The Mountain Goat's music: John Darnielle lives in an entirely different world than me, and has for some time. Not only because he's a self-made rock star, but in how he (seems to) see the world. This really comes through in his songs, which frequently just take one section of time from someone's life, and describes everything around that situation, often times without directly addressing the true topic of the song. And this boy's done this for more 500 songs. He takes such interest in small fragments of stories, and fleshes them out giving even the smallest detail previously-unforeseen importance. Best lyricist of our time. Period.

The Bowerbirds opened, and I really don't have very much to say about them. They didn't seem very confident, and the music seemed to be lacking because of it (and because of other reason). But they were inventive, and you could tell they were having a good time. I'd heard their album prior to the show, but it didn't really stick out to me as much as I had hoped it would. I do think that if they added a little more depth to their music, more life, then it might have been more fun. Maybe next time. Here are a few of their more lively tracks:

The Bowerbirds - In Our Talons
The Bowerbirds - My Oldest Memory
The Bowerbirds - Dark Horse

I did happen to record The Mountain Goats' whole set on Tuesday, and, while it's not the best quality, I think it's rather fitting, because John Darnielle's lo-fi stuff is what seems to be the foundation of his fame. But for those of you who don't want just the lo-fi stuff, here's some b-sides that are really pretty good quality:

The Mountain Goats - Collapsing Stars
The Mountain Goats - Attention All Pickpockets (feat. Kimya Dawson)
The Mountain Goats - Butter Teeth
The Mountain Goats - New Chevrolet In Flames

(Because John Darnielle isn't too keen on his new material leaking, in demo form or bootleg form, I'm not going to host the recordings I have of his new songs. Chances are that when you do hear them, they'll be of better quality than what my little recording device can pump out.)

Band: The Mountain Goats
Date: 2007-11-06
Venue: The Hi-Dive, Denver, CO

Wild Sage
Hast Thou Considered the Tetrapod?
Craters In The Moon (New)
You Or Your Memory
Young Caesar 2000
September 15th, 1983 (New)
Maybe Sprout Wings
Love Craft In Brooklyn (New)
Dance Music
Going to Georgia
We Were Patriots
See America Right
Encore Cheering + Banter
No Children
This Year
House Guest (Nothing Painted Blue Cover)

One of the best shows of the year. Not the best I don't think, but definitely up there.