January 30, 2012 § 1 Comment
The song Practicing to Be a Doctor is explored in its many forms.
Strangulated Beatoffs was 2 guys from Missouri that came out with a song in 1990 called Practicing to Be a Doctor and put it on a 7″/ the other side is called heeby jeeby and is actually pretty great. Practicing to Be A Doctor is 4min, with fuzzy guitar real simple bass line and the one lyric of Practicing Hard To Be A Doctor, which is sung by the one dude and sometimes the other dude. There’s a shitty electronic beat playing too.
Crown Roast was a noisy sorta hardcore, not that exciting band from Austin, and their version of Practicing to Be A Doctor is on 1994’s A Nose Has Many Jobs. This one is around 7min and is heavy and sloppy like chewing on a piece of taffy. It takes its time and when you hear the vocals they sound childish and unconvincing. what kind of a doctor will this guy be even? Real drums for the beat this time and they stand out as a significant marker for the future of this song. For some reason the ending where they slow down is 2 weirdly drawn out minutes.
Shit and Shine decided to cover this song too on Jealous of Shit and Shine (this was probably Craig Clouse’s idea (he was in Crown Roast)) but in doing so changed things up a bit. For starters it’s 30min long. and the drums are an elemental, inescapable feature. vocals are the mainly the same, a little more deadpan and ghostly, and there is additional dialogue too during what i’d call the intermission. Little electronic blips and industrial sounds come and go, like i swear i hear chainsaw, a construction site midday, but it could be the guitar. whistles and noises spice up the fact that this song is still playing. this song is like eating a satisfying sandwich. i could trust these guys in their medical practice.
January 20, 2012 § Leave a comment
Nate Wooley Quintet Alpha played @ The Rotunda 1/19/12 at 8pm
Nate Wooley Quintet Alpha, based in Brooklyn, NY, features a trumpet, vibraphone, bass clarinet, drums, and bass. This was the first concert of the year for the Ars Nova Workshop 2012 jazz season and the event was free. All seats were taken and some people stood up to watch. Nate Wooley Quintet Alpha played for about 80min, and had a traditional feel, with somewhat structured jazz songs that had lots of free jazz elements. The performed the first half of (Put Your) Hands Together, an album with all women’s name, and a few other songs like berries, and 1 million billion btu. Each song was announced and given a mini explanation which gave a more intimate feel to the otherwise abstract sounds. I believe the trumpet was the main highlight; although Nate Wooley gave much credit to the band and each member added their own element was able to shine while playing a solo. The songs had alternating trumpet and bass clarinet, and then they sometimes played in unison. The horn and wind instruments were absent for 1 song which left the percussion section. I thought the vibraphone had a very spirited and clear sound. Observing the drummer was like watching someone paint, because his movements were very fluid and yet controlled. Nate Wooley Quintet Alpha reminded me of the essential artistry behind playing an instrument and it was wonderful listening to the music.
January 15, 2012 § Leave a comment
Pissed Jeans, Blues Control, and Veiled played @ Johnny Brenda’s on 1/14/12. Totally sold out local bands show with capacity at 170 or something.
Veiled was a two man dj set with dark techno lot of heavy beats. The one dude took the mic for a song and kind of shouted and that part reminded me of how Scorn sounds. I couldn’t help thinking it would’ve been better if there were dub effects, and also probably one person could’ve done the set. They had lace on their electronics table, wore leather, and it sounded like every song was me fighting the boss in mario and losing.
Blues Control set up with a lot of equipment for two people. The nice features tonight were the guitar and the keyboards, which sounded a lot more experimental. I could hear them better maybe but there were progressions on some songs and then just nice atmosphere on others. A few had more upbeat rhythms that had people moving. Their songs can be on the longer side and I usually get mesmorized by the loops or an aspect of the melody. My friend told me they played four new songs too.
Pissed Jeans ended the night. Their sound was solid the whole set. None of my favorite songs were played but I didn’t notice because the set was so engaging. The stage at Johnny Brenda’s really places the focus on the musicians and I could see the band great and they sounded clear as hell as they tore through their songs, they did some from Shallow, Hope for Men & King of Jeans: I’ve Still Got You (Ice Cream), Little Sorrell, She Is Science Fiction, Fantasy World, False Jesii Part 2. After they had a 2 song encore. Also they played a new one which was longer and had a slower tempo. Everyone sounded good, fast drums, guitar, bass. The frontman is absolutely great with stage banter, a shit ton of energy, he climbed up on a pole supporting the balcony and just sang there for awhile then was grinding against it. The crowd was wild too with a sort of pit and beer all over the floor. Everyone was sweating, exhausted, and drunk at the end so they achieved their goal of giving us a real good time for our $.
January 14, 2012 § Leave a comment
Human Adult Band, Dick Neff, Suicide Magnets, and Mike Bruno & Th’ Black Magik Family Band played @ The Marvelous at 9pm on 1/13/12. This was a record release show for Adult Band with all local bands and paying patrons got some chili and corn muffins too.
Mike Bruno & Th’ Black Magik Family Band created a dark and eerie folksy atmosphere, reminding me more of merlin the magicians time than 2012 in philly. They had about 7 people on stage and a bunch of non traditional instruments. One was an electronic circular wire piece held and played with a violin bow. Another was what looked like a hubcap occasionally banged and a washboard. Despite these there was mostly ‘modern’ instruments. Vocals were shared and drums were kind of jazzy and light.
Suicide Magnets started off with a solo set, with a guitar and vocals. Vocals were indeciperable and abrasive due to effect on the mic. By the second song I enjoyed the sound. The drums later joined in to round out the music but the focus was still mainly on the guitarist. Very raw lo fi sounding. They play around enough so I was excited I finally got to see what was going on with Suicide Magnets.
Dick Neff had a lot of triplets and ferocious incessant drumming. Actually there was only drumming and then added on were wild electronics at a table next to drums. These two devices created a set with repetitive ‘riff’s; thought they could’ve used a vocal addition or random scream because the music had a lot of buildup and release and the pounding distorted sounds were a lot to take.
Human Adult Band is a 4 member band. They have such a huge bass sound! very low and heavy but with a good tempo. There was a swirling doom feel but then really clear sound to instruments so I could hear how good the guitarist was and the different intricacies in melody. Some wah, lots of dense noise and distortion. Vocals were loaded and unselfconscious. New record is aptly titled Hearing Damage Sessions.
January 7, 2012 § Leave a comment
Dirt Weed Revue, Pinelands, and White Girls played @ The Level Room on 1/6/12 at 9pm.
This was an art opening for a first friday night at a cave like bar space called The Level Room on Market. The artist grimgrimgrim had his useless scumbag show prints up on the walls which had bright colors and distorted images, some band posters. Prob about 20-30 people out.
Pinelands is a one man band. This guy had a guitar with an awesome garage rock sound, and at the same time played the bass drum and cymbals, and sang. At first I wasn’t sure how that would work cause he had a pretty fast pace but he had his shit down. Vocals were gritty and sometimes shouted sometimes sang. I liked a song about birds and he sang one about a sister too. Occasionally he would make strange bird like sounds and whooping noises into the mic. Reminded me of King Khan kind of with bright eyes vocalizations.
White Girls had 3 people, drummer, bass and guitar. For a few songs the bassist switched with the guitarist and sang, creating a different feel to the band. Bassist had some solid lines. I liked how they didn’t sound like anything I’d heard in awhile. They had a fast rougher punk sound, actually kinda grungey vocals and played really close together, almost on top of each other.
Dirt Weed Revue played tonight with 3 people. 3 people on guitars and a multitude of pedals effects and electronics. The overall effect was a long rumbling low drone with lots of crackling and a cool wah wah sound. Best music to absorb when eyes are closed. Unfortunately I couldn’t hear the vocals well when Dan screamed into the guitar. He was playing with screwdrivers which toward the end were just thrown at the guitar strings. Felt more of a performance art rock show.
I think there was another act, Auctioneer, but I missed it.