Challenge: If you can find something more '90s-looking than the above clip, I'll eat my hat. (Joke's on you — I have a disproportionately large head and thus don't really wear hats.) Anyway, our own Sean L. Maloney remembers what it was like back in the '90s, so let's listen to him talk about tonight's Jon Spencer Blues Explosion show at Exit/In:
Thank ya very much ladies and gentleman! Now I've got to tell you about the fabulous, most groovy ... Blooooze Ex-PLO-sion!!! Not that pioneering garage punks really need any introduction — they did make some of the most exhilarating music of the ’90s — but who doesn't love to scream “Blooooze Ex-PLO-sion!!!” at the top of their lungs at random intervals? It's a lot better than screaming “Take a whiff o' my pant leg, baby!” in a public place. (Trust us — things get real awkward, real quick.) In the 20 years since the trio exploded onto the scene with Crypt Style — still one of our favorite records after wearing out multiple copies on multiple formats — a lot of cats have tried to cop their sound, but JSBX remain the undisputed kings of unhinged American rock ’n’ roll. This is their first time playing Nashville in seven years, so let’s make them feel at home. And nuttier still is that this is Bloooooze Ex-PLO-sion!'s first show in Nashville in, like, seven years — so expect a room full of batshit people who've been dyin' to take a proverbial whiff o' the pant leg.
Tiger! Tiger! opens, and tickets are still available.
Even though America apparently hates women, Idol extended an olive branch to the fairer sex this week with Carol King Night. In an intro package, Ryan calls her, "One of the most revered female songwriters in history." It's just like when he dubbed The Beatles "some of the most revered dude songwriters in history," or Elton John "one of the most revered gay songwriters in history." Right? We also got to learn some truly impressive statistics: She had 25 solo records, and Tapestry remained on the charts for six years. We also hear that Babyface is going to be helping Jimmy snuff the contestants' creative energy. He's important — there's even a picture of him with Bill Clinton!
I do not support the possible sale of WRVU’s broadcast license. I believe that if Vanderbilt Student Communications lets our student radio station go, they will have abandoned an invaluable media asset with deep historical and contemporary value.
But there is no getting around the fact that WRVU’s executive staff have handled the proposed sale poorly. When the sale was announced in September, I assumed they would use the opportunity to ally with other organizations and to network with students and alumni in an effort to launch a concerted anti-sale effort. It breaks my heart to say it because there are a lot of great people involved with WRVU, but that’s not how it has played out.
He's just getting started. Further on he says, "Vanderbilt Student Communications hasn’t acknowledged it, but there is no question in my mind that the profound incompetence of the station’s leadership played a role in the decision to nix the broadcast license." Ouch.
* Sinizine.net, a “ska, punk and indie” blog based in “Nashville & beyond” — which features a lot of coverage of Less Than Jake, Fishbone, Stuck Lucky and so forth — was at Natural Child’s in-store at Grimey’s last Saturday. (I was there, too, because I like their new record.) Sinizine also has an interview with Natty Child, in which bassist Wes Traylor notes that he started playing in bands around the time he was getting into Jackass and Korn. There’s also some talk about this song by Trace Adkins and metalcore and so on.
* Nashville's Dead just posted the latest installment of Dead Air, their podcast-y mixtape-type jam. This one — their sixth episode — is called "I Got Nightmares" and was compiled by Walker Mimms of The Paperhead. The Paperhead, as you may recall, are the band I called "mellow psychedelia" thanks to all their "nostalgic haze," "fuzzed-out tones" and "Farfisa fuel." Mimms' proclivity for that mellow psychedelia I was talking about definitely shows in "I Got Nightmares." Trippy, fuzzy, far-out and awesome stuff.
* Third Man Records recently announced the latest installment in their Blue Series. It's a single — "Man in the Middle" b/w "Blue Night" — from mandolinist Chris Thile and guitarist Michael Daves, and it'll be out May 24. Thile and Daves' Sleep With One Eye Open — which was recorded at TMR, but not produced by Jack White — will be out the same day via Nonesuch Records.
Now, as far as this royal wedding thing goes, I can't say that I have any real feelings on it one way or the other. I was, however, surprised to read just how many countries are still affiliated with The Commonwealth of Nations. I mean, damn! You're telling me that The Queen gets to be The Queen in that many places? Better hope this Kate lady ain't just after the jewels, because that's a lot of places to be queen of.
Anyhow, Nashville's looking pretty good this weekend, rock-wise. Tonight, you've got The Jon Spencer Blues Explosion at Exit/In, The Pink Spiders with Evan P. Donohue and Denney and the Jets at The End, Jeremy Lister's album release at Mercy Lounge, a kickin' house party or two and more. Saturday, we're looking at The Clutters' record release at The Basement, Those Darlins with Heavy Cream at Mercy, Tom Jones at The Ryman (!) and more, plus Little Hamilton's No Fest is going on both tonight and tomorrow. Have a look at the rest — compiled by music listings editor Adam Gold, Prince of Blogs — after the jump. Let us know what we missed, and have yourselves a regal weekend.
Check it out! It’s Thursday!
In other news:
* Anyone old enough to remember when pseudo-psycho Gary Busey used to act as characters other than himself probably recalls his masterful, star-making, starring role in 1978’s The Buddy Holly Story. Since Busey has resorted to riding into the sunset of his career as a pop-culture punchline, horsin’ off with John Rich, Meatloaf and others (all for the amusement of noted fuckface of fucked faces and recently figuratively bitch-slapped Birther Donald Trump), you’re more likely to see him reprise his role as meatball-sandwich-loving Agent Angelo Pappas in a sequel to Point Break — which celebrates its 20th anniversary this year, BTW — before you see or hear him sing “That’ll Be the Day” again.
But don’t sweat it, because you can hear Modest Mouse adapt that jam on a forthcoming Buddy Holly tribute compilation that, among a widespread smattering of renowned classic and indie-rock notables (and Kid Rock), will bear a bold Music City stamp. Nashvillians The Black Keys, Karen Elson and Justin Townes Earle will join the ranks of Sir Paul McCartney, Nick Lowe, John Doe, Graham Nash, Lou Reed, Patti Smith, Fionna Apple and Jon Brion, Jenny O, Cee Lo Green, The Detroit Cobras, Julian Casablancas, She & Him, My Morning Jacket, Modest Mouse and more on the star-studded Rave On Buddy Holly, which will honor the overwhelmingly influential singer’s short life in the 75th year since his birth. The comp drops June 28 on Fantasy Records/Concord Music Group. Study the full track list and artist list (and a hodgepodge of other news items) after the jump, and read more about it here.
It's time for some more WRVU testimonials, this time featuring four DJs — Tim Hamilton (Take Back the Night), Kelly Taylor (The Penguin Parade), Chris Butsch (Guerilla Radio) and Victor Clarke (High Voltage Radio) — opining on the station, the medium of radio and the decidedly non-monetary value they put on their WRVU experience. Caitlin Meyer, Joe Panuncialman, Mark Nordby and Margot Danis put together this video for a sociology class at Vanderbilt, and if Caitlin's name sounds familiar, she penned a love letter to the station for Consequence of Sound back in December of 2010.
Speaking of our Conference Call series, remember when Colour Revolt's Jesse Coppenbarger performed the inaugural one back in July? That was just before CR released their latest, The Cradle, an album that I enjoyed and blogged about on that other blog I used to blog on:
A lot of these tunes are angular, jagged, ’90s-influenced rock tracks with plenty of dirty, hard-edged licks and half-screamed, verbose, acerbic lyrics; brings to mind acts like Seam, Silkworm and Chavez. They also have a nuanced, textured side that reveals itself on ballads like “Everything Is the Same.” I really like album-opener “8 Years,” which seems to tell the tale of the band’s rocky history, complete with aggressive, road-weary lyrics and a rapid, urgent delivery.
Colour Revolt will play tonight at Mercy Lounge, with Tallest Trees appearing in support. Tickets are $10 and still available.
Oh man. We love doing these — especially when the artist brings his own lamp for mood lighting. It's the latest installment in our Conference Call series — a series that has previously featured Colour Revolt, Tristen, Daniel Pujol and First Aid Kit. Now, we're proud to bring you three tunes from indomitable local pop songster Evan P. Donohue. Above you'll see Mr. Donohue doing an acoustic version of "California Sunlight" from last year's Rhythm and Amplitude, a surf-, rockabilly- and doo-wop-inflected slice of true-blue rock 'n' roll that takes its cues from Costello and Holly. After the jump, you'll see "Oh My God, It's Pi Day" — a new number written about, well, Pi Day — as well as "The Thing That Separates," which is featured on Donohue's Late Autumn Cassette.
You can see Evan P. Donohue — and fellow locals Denney and the Jets — tomorrow night at The End, where they'll be opening for The Pink Spiders. As always, this installment of Conference Call was directed and edited by Seth Graves.
These days, Friedman is perhaps best known as a writer — check out his fine novels Greenwich Killing Time, A Case of Lone Star and When the Cat’s Away. He has also been a pretty impressive Texas politician who ran for the governor’s seat in the Lone Star State in 2006, and came in fourth in a field of six. It was a respectable showing, and he’s continued to perform and write. This year Friedman has seen the debut of Ted Swindley’s musical play Becoming Kinky ... The World According to Kinky Friedman, which has played to appreciative audiences in Texas. He’s not even dead, and that has to feel good.
Now 66, Friedman is hitting the road this spring, doing some of his old material and trying out some new songs. His old records sound pretty sharp these days — check out his 1974 Kinky Friedman, which contains plenty of great songs. He’s still smoking those good cigars, and still concerned about American culture, Barry Manilow, Charlie Sheen and other matters of interest. We caught up with him at home in Texas, but he seemed ready to bust out at any moment.
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