Club Comings and Goings
You know the rules: anytime I discuss a club's possible closing, there's always a new one ready to open. This time, it's one with the pre-used name the Split Rail, and it should be opening at 705 Rio Grande, former home of Cowboys, Kilimanjaro, the Cave Club, and about a dozen others. Now, when I say that Paul Sessums is half-owner in this venture, I'm sure you're all flipping to the cover to see if this is our April Fools' issue, but no, it's not. Co-owner Peter Turner, public-access talk-show host and former employee of both the Continental Club and Liberty Lunch, assures me that the lease has been signed and that the club will be open as soon as the beer license comes through, which should be sometime in the next six weeks. Sessums will book the venue Mondays through Wednesdays, and Turner will handle Thursdays through Saturdays, with an emphasis on "alternative country" groups, plus roots and lounge acts. More on this one when (if?) it opens.
Okay, kids, this is it. I won't be telling you again that next Thursday,
November 16, is the absolute deadline to apply for your band to play next
March's SXSW Music Conference. On that day, you'll want to take your demo tape,
press packet (such as it is) and $15 over to Ruby's BBQ between 6pm and
midnight and fill out an application. The SXSW staff are still being secretive
about what big-name acts will be playing next year's conference, as nobody's
yet close to confirmed, but I can tell you that some pretty heavy acts have
expressed interest in performing. And if the multimedia folks at the conference
have been paying any attention to my demands that a certain subversive group
from Providence, Rhode Island, be asked to perform, there's gonna be a helluva
time over in that part of the festival.
Last Chance Scenario
Longtime Trance Syndicate act the Cherubs will be reuniting to make a fourth
album for the label after a long absence. Singer/guitarist Keith Whitley,
currently living in Minneapolis, was down in Austin for a week's visit, during
which plans were made for recording new material. The Trance crew confirm that
the band is "threatening to" get back together, rehearsing via four-track tapes
sent through the mail before assembling to record an album due out next year. A
CD of "old stuff" is also planned for release in April, while the Cherubs
remain alive in the record racks via the split single with the Fuck Emos (the
Cherubs' "I Want Candy" and the Fucks' "Do You Wanna Dance") that Trance
released a couple of weeks ago. There's also loose talk of a possible Cherubs
show in Austin in early '96. Also in the maybe stages upcoming from Trance is a
CD from Sweetpea.
Return of the Cherubs?
Well, somebody's gotta keep an eye on the Buttholes, cuz you can't do it
yourself, now can ya? The latest word is that the basic tracks for 13 new songs
have been laid down at Bearsville Studios in New York, and that the band will
be heading back up in a couple of weeks for mixing. Drummer King Coffey, back
in town keeping his Trance Syndicate empire together (see above), says that
he's surprised that things came together so fast. The album, produced by famed
mixer Steve Thompson (who also mixed the "Who Was in My Room Last Night"
single) still has no title, though there's talk of a cover featuring drag
queens and naked people. Like that's a surprise?
Butthole Surfer Watch
Wow! If I'd known that Leonard Graves Phillips of the incredible Dickies was
going to pop in to Lovejoy's while I was running my weekly Cartoon Fest
(shameless self-promotion: 5-7pm, no cover, Happy Hour prices), I would've made
sure to have had some Gigantor episodes on the bill (actually, I'm told
the whole band was there at some point, but I don't know what the new guys look
like and I definitely didn't see guitarist Stan Lee.) If you missed the Dickies
show at Emo's last Saturday night, don't fret. Phillips promised that the band,
which took 17 years to get to Austin for the first time, would be back "in the
The Austin American-Statesman's mascot, a giant, winged rodent named
Rex L. Bat, was beaten up by the Texas Tech band during the game last Saturday
after he (it?) taunted them -- as mascots are paid to do -- during the course
of the competition. From what I hear, the bat (like the kind under the Congress
Street Bridge, not like in baseball) costume which cost $12,000 to make, was
With a name like Rex L. Bat, it's obvious that the Statesman is trying to plug their weekly XL ent. supplement, and I think they've been going about it all wrong. Now, it seems, it's finally time for me to suggest to XL ent. that they adopt the mascots I think they should've had from the beginning; the lovable, demographics-friendly "XL Ants"! Seen here, these two hip twentysomething Formicidae (Jen X. and Thor X.) are the perfect pair to show their young, style-conscious readers that XL ent. really does have the "insect-inside" scoop on the things that really "raise their antennae!"