For those of you who don’t know, Melbourne, Australia’s Whiskey Go Go’s have moved to Brooklyn and changed their name to our mountain. This band, led by Matthew Hutchinson, plays a rare sort of dirty Americana rock ‘n roll that has the subtlety of Young and a passion pickled in the brine of booze induced love. The man cannot sit still, his legs strike the awkward pose, his best attempt at repressing the kicks and jumps, while his hands, when not furiously striking his guitar strings, are thrust into the air, an exclamation that what he sings and what he pleads is nothing short of a matter of life and death. Indeed he could be rock ‘n roll’s next great evangelist. Lucky for us our mountain will be playing Zebulon in Brooklyn Friday, January 8th and will be accompanied by Woos & Woes. For those of you who do know the band, I hear new material will be played.
Archive for the ‘This Just In…’ Category
For those of you who have been preoccupied with this year’s election cycle, research has uncovered the true inspiration of the McCain/Palin campaign strategy. Yikes!
…The prescience is disturbing…
Shuttlecock- Minotaur Shock Remix
Spoons: Remixes, Collaboration, and Interpretations
Casino Gravity Records
Listen to This! 8/9
This remix of Dublin’s own Jeff Martin by the Bristol band Minotaur Shock is freakin’ excellent. The song is called Shuttlecock and will be well received by people into Chicago indie jazz acts like Tortoise, or eclectic instrumentalists like Sufjan Stevens. In fact John McEntire from Tortoise also happens to contribute to the album of Remixes, Collaborations, and Interpretations. This incarnation of Shuttlecock incorporates bells and horns for a multilayered, textural composition, which never sounds cacophonous; although, Minotaur Shock makes clear that chaos could happen at any moment. Minotaur Shock is on 4AD
Jeff Martin is on Casino Gravity Records and a member of the electronic group Halfset. Martin releases a new LP on May 27th and Halfset releases their second album in September. We look forward to reviewing these releases. Heads up, don’t confuse him with the other Jeff Martin from Ireland…the pirate look alike.
Having recently joined the South Korean armed forces, Zack Kim has been away from his musical pursuits. He is “in love with music and dreams of performing around the world someday.” Well I gotta say young fella, move to Bushwick and lets start a band. Check out his Blog here. He does a cover of Zelda and Super Mario Bros. too.
I am not sure what to say about this except…Yes…people….Yes…
O’Death/Hoots & Hellmouth
The Mercury Lounge
December 21st 2007
The night began at The Sidewalk Café. I met friends for drinks in preparation for New York’s own O’Death. My friends had introduced me to the band over the summer nights of grilling on our roof in Bushwick. To be honest I wasn’t sure what to make of them then. They sounded like deranged Appalachian whiskey hounds preparing to make some poor city slicker squeal like a pig. That and the Manhattan cityscape make a frightening combination. I had to see them live. While at the café, we received information telling us that O’Death’s show at The Mercury Lounge was canceled due to the fatality of the drummer’s fiancée. We were very disappointed.
“Another round of beers,” we asked the server.
By this time my beautiful wife had arrived and we had become anxious to know what the story was with our evening plans. I mentioned to my friends that despite the unfortunate events, O’Death might be the kind of band that would play on. I mean being featured two nights back to back at The Mercury Lounge is quite an honor, and what better way to remember a loved one than to celebrate them with music?
The doors of the venue were surely already open so I volunteered to walk down 1st Ave to Houston in hopes of learning our fate. I approached the doorman outside Mercury and asked him if O’Death were going to go on that night. He gave me a confused look, kind of tilted his head, questioning what the hell I was talking about. I explained that I had come into information that put into question O’Death’s participation in the show. I was slightly blotto by this point and was ultra cautious to be as sensitive as possible. He said that he knew nothing of it, and that the show was to go on as scheduled. I wasn’t convinced. We all know that a venue will say anything to get people in the door buying drinks.
I just knew that if I were to buy tickets that 11:00 would come around and someone would slink up on stage to announce, “Unfortunately due to unforeseen circumstances, O’Death will not be able to join us tonight.”
By then it would be too late to get our money back and we would have had to sit through an unknown number of crap songs only to be denied our desired band.
So I pressed a bit harder, “You promise that O’Death will play tonight?”
“Ask the band yourself,” he replied, pointing to a man lighting a cigarette.
“Excuse me sir, do you know if O’Death will be playing tonight?” I asked.
“Yea,” he quietly croaked as the flame of his lighter expired and the cherry of his cigarette transformed into a tiny inferno.
“I mean, are you sure?”
“Yea, we’re all here,” pointing inside to the long wooden bar inside.
“The thing is, I was told that someone close to the band suffered a fatality and that the show was canceled,” I insisted.
“That’s the first I’ve heard of it,” the man tossed his twice puffed butt into the street and headed for the entrance.
This convinced me. I felt like I had unduly worried a band member. Clearly everything was okay and whatever information my friends had received was false.
When I returned, I shared the news with my beer and wine sipping comrades. It was good news and bad news. Good because the show was still on and bad because I had started a texting spat between the provider of the seemingly false warning and the individual who disseminated the information among the crowd. One insisted on its veracity, while the other, convinced by my inquiry and answer, was upset at the misinformation. None the less we paid our tab and went down to the venue and paid our hard earned money for what we all hoped would be a fantastic event.
When we arrived, the first band had already finished and the second band had begun to pluck away into their set. A bearded redheaded ogre of a man fronted Hoots & Hellmouth providing quite an authentic hillbilly aesthetic. I was surprised to learn that these guys were from PA. I wasn’t aware hillbillies lived in the Commonwealth. They were a great bluegrass influenced band. I don’t remember most of their music through the fog of inebriety that was layering itself upon my hippocampus, but I remember it was good stuff. They reassured me that the evening, with or without the final act, would be worth the 10 bones it cost to enter the door.
The next band was no good. The rockabilly style they exuded was out of place and passé. After all I was drunk…I can’t like everything when I am drunk…I am sure they were a fine band, although I looked to others in my pack to confirm what I had suspected. These guys were crap. Just when I thought all the life was sucked out of the room, the lame band left the stage in prep for the final act. Members of O’Death could be seen walking amongst the crowd, so clearly some of them were to play. Maybe it would be a beatless hoedown, but to our half-surprise the drums got set up, as did the rest of the instruments. I knew this was my time to get a beer and piss before the show began.
As I reentered the room the crowd was ecstatic. The band mentioned upon commencement that this show was dedicated to a dear friend who had passed. I guess they were the type to play on after all. I shuffled my way to the front, eager to stomp around. I wasn’t sure what to expect. They ripped into their first song with the force of feisty old man named Uncle Sticky. Greg Jamie seemed to follow the same vein as Isaac Brock when he released Ugly Casanova with the guttural rasps of demonic possession fused with tooth absent, country dwelling peasantry. It is as if the rural psychosis sometimes found in Modest Mouse infected a perfectly decent and upright bluegrass band. What a delicious infection.
The drummer was an athletic type, pummeling through the set without a hint of depression. Clearly if his betrothed-to-be was deceased, he was not going succumb to the weight of loss or mourning. The bassist looked like a cave man pulled right out of the Museum of Natural History, shirtless and barbaric. At one point he leaned down and screamed in my face, I screamed back. I smashed plastic cups, and did a pounding jig-stomp that I had never performed before. I was a Pentecostal in direct communion with the Spirit. Mr. Jamie sang seated, but he never the less cranked out his tunes with a deranged face and vicious voice. The fiddler was tall and thin, looking like an intelligent, dishonest hick who we all know eats babies. Near the conclusion of the maelstrom, the band charged into a crescendo of noise. The bass player threw off his bass and jumped into the crowd, slam dancing his way through the audience, his sweat slopping to the ground like a mop head hovering over a linoleum floor, dripping in saline clumps and blots. I repeat there was a mosh pit for about 3 seconds.
When the lights came up I stumbled drunk and exhausted to the band to give my thanks. As I approached, Greg Jamie stuck out his hand and said that he appreciated my enthusiasm. I do not really remember the sound of the songs just the feel of them. The beat was omnipresent and the aggressiveness was imposing. Booze makes me pound on shit like a pissed ape presenting to his troop. My right hand was red and purple for days after. I still don’t know what to make of the band. I am not sure I’d listen to it at a party, or on an idle day of reading, or on any other occasion in fact. I know that the show was great. It was the format in which they shine. It is where they emit the energy that they intended with their recordings. It is live that the characters invoked by O’Death are given life. Perhaps this was the causation that kept the band playing that weekend- an inverted relationship between the name they display and the function they perform.
Carl Nemelka Family Photographs- 2004 (Self-released)
Head Home- 2004 (Self-Released)
Head Home- 2007 (US/Europe)
02/26/2008 8:00 TT The Bears Cambridge, Massachusetts
02/27/2008 9:00 Music Hall of Williamsburg Brooklyn, New York
02/29/2008 10:00 Schuba’s Chicago, Illinois
03/01/2008 9:00 400 Bar Minneapolis, Minnesota
03/04/2008 8:00 High Dive Seattle, Washington
03/05/2008 8:00 Doug Fir Portland, Oregon
03/07/2008 10:00 Bottom of the Hill San Francisco, California
03/08/2008 8:00 Spaceland Los Angeles, California
03/10/2008 8:00 Hi Dive Denver, Colorado