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Off the Record - 33 RPM

In this edition of Off the Record's 33 RPM, Room 710 goes out with a bang, roundball ruckus takes over Red River, and more confirmations for the 2009 Fun Fun Fun Fest. Read More | Comment »

33 RPM 4:03PM Mon. Aug. 10, 2009, Austin Powell

In the Monitor

Local punk/pop/country trio Darling New Neighbors is not only releasing a new disc later this month, it's also in the running to contribute the theme song for former Sleater-Kinney guitarist Carrie Brownstein's NPR blog, Monitor Mix. They are currently in the lead, and deadline for voting is tomorrow, so get to it here! Update: They won! Read More | Comment »

Schadenfreude 3:52PM Mon. Aug. 10, 2009, Audra Schroeder

The Lineup

The Lineup 12:30PM Fri. Aug. 7, 2009

Always Coming Back Home to You

"Most of the shows we play, the back of the venue usually starts at that tree and runs straight across to that light over there,” Slug said late into Atmosphere's throwdown at Stubb’s Wednesday night. “You have no idea how good it is to see all you ugly people all the way the fuck back there.” Atmosphere wears its underground status like a badge of honor, but that claim that may not ring true in Austin any longer. The Minneapolis duo's usually found down the street at Emo’s when they roll through, but it became painfully obvious during last year’s two-night sold-out affair that the love connection between Atmosphere and Austin deserved a larger setting. Enter Stubb’s, a venue that at first glance looks like no place for a Rhymesayers reunion. Slug (Sean Daley) and DJ Anthony “Ant” Davis stayed on point. Beefed up by the presence of guitarist Nate Collins, singer Mankwe Ndosi, and Erick Anderson on the keys, Slug showed the love straight from the onset, wearing a red Texas Rangers hat he later gave to a fan. The throngs of Ugly people, a term of endearment to anyone who knows Slug and Ant, soaked up two tracks from 2002’s God Loves Ugly – the title track and “One of a Kind” – before Slug’s first vocal profession of Austin love (a recount of their SXSW debut in 1998 and his exploits with Murs and Blueprint). “Puppets,” “The Rooster,” “Shoulda Known,” “Painting,” and “Like the Rest of Us,” from last year’s When Life Gives You Lemons, You Paint that Shit Gold, dove even deeper into the character sketches of beat-up, beaten-down head cases Slug knows too well. Read More | Comment »

Check Yo' Self 4:57PM Thu. Aug. 6, 2009, Chase Hoffberger

Willie Bob Cougar

If there was ever a lineup made for Geezerville, this was it. Songwriting icons from three generations – Bob Dylan, Willie Nelson, and John Mellencamp – each with an indelible imprint on American music, came to Round Rock last evening and delivered a sturdy version of where they stand today. OK, it was hot. It’s August in Central Texas. What did I expect? But the Dell Diamond had a festival atmosphere. The stage was set up in center field with the infield and dugouts roped off. There were lots of oldsters, of course, but more than a few children under 14 got in free with a ticket purchase. Gen Y was represented as well, texting and playing with whatever was on their phones no matter who was on stage. Like a baseball game, there were vendors in the crowd hawking beer and nuts and cotton candy. I chose to sit in the stands behind third base, in the shade. Brooklyn’s Wiyos took the stage at exactly 5:30 and delivered an animated, if less than impressive, half-hour set of hillbilly jazz. At this point, the foursome’s blend of Wayne Hancock and Asylum Street Spankers has been done to the point of caricature, and while they seemed to be sincere, they didn’t bring anything new to the ballpark. Read More | Comment »

Geezerville 12:15PM Wed. Aug. 5, 2009, Jim Caligiuri

Get in the Van

NYC promoter Todd P's free all-day South by Southwest shows at Ms. Bea's have become destinations for those looking for more underground sounds. This year, some of the bands on his lineups filmed their treks to Austin for a new documentary, Todd P Goes to Austin. Check the trailer below.

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Schadenfreude 4:43PM Mon. Aug. 3, 2009, Audra Schroeder

Camp's Out

I had the honor and privilege of being invited to this summer's Girls Rock Camp Austin to talk to girls about music and writing and being a music writer. After a discussion with aspiring writers/campers P.J., Kat, Andrea, Reyna, and Monse about three of our most inspirational songs, they set out to interview San Antonio's Girl in a Coma after a performance on Thursday. Read what went down here, and weep. Also, check out some shots from Saturday's showcase showdown to the right. Read More | Comment »

Schadenfreude 3:30PM Mon. Aug. 3, 2009, Audra Schroeder

August Month for the Daze

After the premiere of Bandslam tomorrow night at the Galaxy Highland 10, something’s going to change for the Daze. It’s not just the killer, once-in-a-lifetime chance to dazzle a national audience onscreen – the Austin teens are following their cinematic good fortune with a CD release. The Daze – Evan Butts, Chris Ritchie, and Aaron Lemke – and fellow Austinites Joker perform live at the premiere. Filmed around town, Bandslam is a musical comedy starring High School Musical’s Vanessa Hudgens, Aly & AJ’s Aly Michalka, Scott Porter, Gaelen Connell, and Lisa Kudrow. In the film, high schoolers compete for a battle of the bands amid love and rivalries. Following the premiere tomorrow, the film opens nationally Aug. 14. The Daze's debut, Straightjacket Hymns, produced by Rick Del Castillo, doesn’t hit the streets until Aug. 27, and by then, they’ll be reaping the benefits of Bandslam’s back-to-school appeal. The Daze’s song “Blizzard Woman” is featured prominently in the film, and Straightjacket Hymns reflects the kids’ love of traditional hard rock a la Led Zeppelin and Bob Dylan as informed by contemporary influences such as Radiohead and the Black Keys. Read More | Comment »

Girlie Action 2:58PM Mon. Aug. 3, 2009, Margaret Moser

Off the Record - 33 RPM

In this edition of Off the Record's 33 RPM, Room 710 prepares to shut its doors, Amy Cook goes under the lens, and a personal introduction to The Austin Chronicle Music Anthology. Read More | Comment »

33 RPM 11:57AM Mon. Aug. 3, 2009, Austin Powell

Blunt Cruisin’

It was easy to feel old at Stubb’s last night. A crowd littered with tweeners and Longhorns subbed lighters for cell phones – when they weren’t busy texting – in welcoming Asher Roth, rap’s greatest proponent of higher education. The skinny white dude from outside Philly returned the favor, putting up a set made perfect for the ADD ways of Generation Next. The final tally on Roth’s non-SXSW Austin debut amounted to (in no particular order): two miniature Uncle Sams making it rain during “Sour Patch Kids,” one choreographed dance to Soul 4 Reel’s “Candy Rain,” three callouts for Colt McCoy and Longhorn wide receiver Dan Buckner, one song (“Lion’s Roar”) in which hypeman Brian Langley dressed up like a lion, 30 girls on stage for “She Don’t Wanna Man,” and one giant plastic blunt that looked like Fred Flintstone’s club. There was also the pre-requisite, “I Love College,” the Weezer-spoofed megahit to which Roth owes the full extent of his fame. Read More | Comment »

Check Yo' Self 4:39PM Fri. Jul. 31, 2009, Chase Hoffberger

White Men Can’t Jump

This weekend Club de Ville is hosting a three-night “Bands Versus Clubs” basketball tournament on its back patio. Within 90 minutes of catching word of the roundball ruckus, OTR had finagled a Chronicle squad into the competition. After all, what club owner could resist the opportunity to throw some elbows this way? Rounding out this weekly’s squad is classifieds guru Bobby Leath, music freelance sharpshooter Doug “Showdown” Freeman, and promotions specialist Dan Hardick, with a possible substitution still in the works. Red River will be represented by our host, Mohawk, the Side Bar, Jackalope and the oddball out, Waterloo Records. They’ll square off in a double elimination-style tournament against Grand Champeen, Danny Malone, La Snacks, Frank Smith/Bankrupt & the Borrowers, and Blaise Faire. The Chronicle tips off against the Black Angels tonight at 10pm. Spectator tickets are $5 per night or $7 for a weekend pass. As Leroy Smith would say, butterscotch! Read More | Comment »

Off the Record 3:10PM Thu. Jul. 30, 2009, Austin Powell

Lonesome Whistle

The premise for last night's third annual tribute at the Cactus was toasting Hank Williams and Lucinda Williams. Although not related, these two artists have influenced a horde of Austin musicians with their words and deeds, and as the show wore on, the coupling made more and more sense. Everyone who got on stage was allowed one song by Hank, one by Lucinda, and one of their own. It had the aura of Kerrville all over it: There were some familiar performers and songs, but it also offered the audience brief glimpses at some impressive under-the-radar acts. There were a couple of surprises sprinkled throughout the two-hour performance. Tom Pittman of the Austin Lounge Lizards, who served as master of ceremonies, ended the first set by rendering Hank’s “Cold, Cold Heart.” But not before informing the crowd that in his 45 years as a musician he had never performed solo. Another Cactus first. Southpaw Jones admirably yodeled through “Long Gone Lonesome Blues,” then pulled out Lucinda’s “Out of Touch,” which he claimed he learned from an early demo recording that was starkly different from the one that made it onto Essence. BettySoo was the special, unannounced guest, serving up a chilling rendition of “Lonesome Whistle,” which can be found on her fab new disc, Heat Sin Water Skin, produced by Lucinda’s old friend Gurf Morlix. Show producer Jenny Reynolds was spunky as always, choosing to perform Lucinda’s rarely heard “I Envy the Wind,” and bluesman Seth Walker offered a self-composed spiritual that fit nicely between the Williams’ visions, both bluesy and Gothic. Thankfully, almost no one brought out their inner Audrey and the show flew by without any technical hitches, insuring there will be another Williams Nite down the road. Read More | Comment »

Geezerville 11:12AM Wed. Jul. 29, 2009, Jim Caligiuri

What the Bleep

Hot on the (w)heels of this somewhat unsettling article, Church of the Friendly Ghost takes a more user-friendly approach to robotics at Salvage Vanguard Theater on Sunday. The night offers a circuit bending workshop from the folks at Bleep Labs, open to anyone, regardless of level of expertise, as well as a garage sale from Treasure City. Starting at 9pm, feast your ears on performances by Jano Selector, Furby Youth Choir (imagine a dozen of those creepy things to the right), Eric Archer, and the Space Invader Orchestra, all using recycled or found materials to make music. Starts at 7pm, $5. Read More | Comment »

Schadenfreude 4:14PM Tue. Jul. 28, 2009, Audra Schroeder

Off the Record - 33 RPM

In this edition of Off the Record’s 33 RPM, Coma in Algiers goes door to door, Ignitor slays The Spider Queen, and Tia Carrera lays down The Quintessential. Read More | Comment »

33 RPM 4:48PM Mon. Jul. 27, 2009, Austin Powell

The Lineup

The Lineup 4:29PM Fri. Jul. 24, 2009

Conversing over coffee at the Waffle House
 

Video: Bavu Blakes "Go Blaze"

Crew54 has stayed steady on the grind since our last visit. Along with producing the weekly 54 Reality Show, the Killeen duo's Dookie Vizion Productions directed Bavu Blakes latest “Go Blaze,” featuring Ter'ell Shahid, from his forthcoming Picnic Extra Plair EP. That scene from Waffle House seriously has my stomach rumbling and longing for a good old fashioned family road trip. [video-1] As a bonus feature, here's the latest episode of Crew54's 54 Reality Show. [video-2] Read More | Comment »

33 RPM 1:04PM Wed. Jul. 22, 2009, Austin Powell

Playing Catch Up

Before we slip into August, I wanted to point out three multidisc sets that came out this month. I’ve got hazy memories of the Drive-by Truckers/Slobberbone shows that happened ten or so years ago at the Hole in the Wall. One thing’s for sure: the Truckers never sounded as good as they do on Live From Austin TX (New West). The recording of their first appearance on Austin City Limits, shot during last year’s ACL Festival, comes as a CD/DVD release. Due to time constraints, the CD omits some of the stage banter while including all the music, but the DVD is the real attraction anyway. No matter how many times I’ve seen them – and honestly I can’t figure out how many it’s been – Patterson Hood’s tale of his mother falling in love with a truck driver told before “18 Wheels of Love” always raises the hair on my neck and this one’s no different. The new twist to the story’s end only heightens the effect. Most of the Athens, Ga., band’s set list is taken from last year’s opus, Brighter Than Creation's Dark, but still manages to include tasty oldies like “The Living Bubba” and the roof-raising finale “Let There Be Rock.” DBT’s previous DVD, 2005’s Live At the 40 Watt, was a good representation of where they were at that moment in time, but Live From Austin TX is superior in every way. If you’re not already a fan, and you love brainy, brawny rock, it’ll make you one. Read More | Comment »

Geezerville 12:32PM Wed. Jul. 22, 2009, Jim Caligiuri

'Amy Cook: The Spaces In Between'

Dish Network subscribers will be able to catch Amy Cook: The Spaces In Between, featuring local musician Amy Cook, starting July 22. The new film, directed by Todd Robinson, follows Cook on tour across the Southwest and includes live performances, in-depth interviews, a glance at the recording process, off-stage antics, and even an explosion or two. Linked to hotelier Liz Lambert, Cook is making a name for herself with music that is a combination of folk, pop, and alt country. Her newest CD, Let the Light In was produced by Alejandro Escovedo and features guest artist Patti Griffin, among others. Cook was among the handful of musicians featured in Out Magazine's Top 100 of 2008. Read More | Comment »

Girlie Action 7:33AM Wed. Jul. 22, 2009, Belinda Acosta

Forty Licks

"Everything’s forty years old this year!” exclaimed my former office mate and chief Chronicle film critic Marjorie Baumgarten at lunch on Sunday. Maybe she is right. This feels like the year of more 40-years-since anniversaries than even I want to remember, including Woodstock, the moon landing, the Manson murders, and Altamont. It was a grand summer, though, maybe the last gasp of Top Forty radio before the FM culture took over. One of the songs of the summer was the Sir Douglas Quintet’s “Mendocino,” Doug Sahm’s second ride up the charts, since his Beatles-inspired “She’s About a Mover” in 1966. This time, Sahm and the Quintet weren’t the mod mop-tops of the “Mover” era; they’d foregone the Dutchboy bangs and Beatle boots for a decidedly Texas look, as seen on the cover of Rolling Stone in December 1968. Harvey Kagan played bass in that version of the Quintet. He was already a veteran of Doug’s bands, a San Antonio kid who also did studio work with Gene Vincent and Dewey Martin as well as being one of San Antonio’s first-call bassists. Although Harvey did not play on “Mendocino” (Jimmy Stallings did), he laid down the soulful bottom of “At the Crossroads.” He currently does studio work and plays with Dubb Hankins & the Oh So Good Band. Read More | Comment »

Girlie Action 3:43PM Mon. Jul. 20, 2009, Margaret Moser

Beastie Boy Licensed Ill

The daily schedule for the 2009 Austin City Limits Music Festival at Zilker Park, Oct. 2-4, dropped this morning. Check it out here, but expect some changes to the Friday night lineup. The Beastie Boys canceled all their upcoming tour dates, including a taping for Austin City Limits, and postponed the release of its forthcoming, Hot Sauce Committee Part 1, after Adam "MCA" Yauch was diagnosed with a cancerous tumor in his left parotid gland. The tumor was caught in an early stage of development and is located in a generally localized area, but will still require surgery and additional treatment. Also worth noting are some of the name changes to the different stages. From the looks of it, ACL has lost corporate sponsorship from AT&T and (obviously) Washington Mutual, but picked up XBox in return. Stay tuned for more details. Read More | Comment »

Off the Record 11:30AM Mon. Jul. 20, 2009, Austin Powell

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