Butthole Surfer Watch!

Yes, I'm still keeping my eye on the Butthole Surfers. Hey, when's the last time an Austin act had the number one Modern Rock track in the country for three weeks running? Besides, I had to check out their San Antonio show this weekend to make sure they were serious about that Austin Music Hall debacle being a one-time-only deal. Sure enough, the Sunken Gardens show -- or at least what I remember of it -- was a triumph, with both band and effects performing at their peaks (Margaret Moser augments my memory with a "Live Shot" in this issue).

The Buttholes' Corpus Christi show, however, was another story altogether, I'm told. A local in attendance said the crowd there "loved" Sincola, the Reverend Horton Heat, and the Toadies, even though one miscreant managed to bop the latter band's singer in the head with a thrown object during their set. He was unhurt and nonplused, but when someone later tried the same trick on Gibby Haynes (with a wristwatch, says USA Today), Gib made clear his intention to feed the perpetrator his/her own genitals -- and things got worse from there. Haynes then proceeded to turn the song "TV Star" -- the one y'all know as "Christina" -- into an unpleasant paean to Selena. The Corpus crowd further took issue with Haynes' calling them "trailer trash" and his use of the phrase "sister-fucking" and by the time the band split the stage, the crowd of thousands was chanting "Fuck you!" with great abandon. The aforementioned Austinite tells me that at this point he feared that a riot would erupt so he tried to get backstage, only to receive an (unintentional) elbow in the head from Haynes, who was rushing to punch out a particularly aggressive audience member who had come to the gate to harangue Gibby personally. Oh, I should add that the show -- even if it was a trifle short -- was terrific.

Want to see the Buttholes without risking personal injury? Well, besides the upcoming (August 8) appearance on the David Letterman show, expect to see the guys host MTV's Alternative Nation soon. As always with MTV, the exact date is elusive, but the boys should be shooting the thing at the MTV Beach House as you read this. Oh, and here's as good a place to run a correction as any: The last full moon before Hallowe'en is of course October 26, not August, as ran last week. That's when the robotics, explosives, and reanimated dead animals of the Survival Research Laboratories will be appearing in Austin. Unconfirmed rumors have been going around that the Buttholes linked up with Mark Pauline and SRL when they were in San Francisco recently and have at least discussed the possibility of co-billing their "make-up" show with the SRL performance. Now, just try to get out of that unharmed!

You Can Go Home Again!

Eddie Wilson can't say too much about the new Threadgill's that's opening up (and returning him to his old stomping grounds on the site where the Armadillo World Headquarters once stood). He's still getting things together and doesn't have a solid schedule for the new restaurant. All he's sure of is that he plans to duplicate the workings of the current Threadgill's in "almost every way we can." The exclusion represented by that "almost" is the Wednesday Threadgill's Troubadors show -- at least until someone comes up with a way for Champ Hood to be in two places at once. One thing's for sure: If Wilson runs out of money on the project, he can probably cover everything by selling that contract signed by Elvis Presley in 1955 that he found while working on the building. And as far as the word going around that the Hard Rock Cafe is interested in the old Nighthawk building and that the two businesses could really liven up that area together, Wilson quips, "I'd just as soon they wait a couple of years before they pay me that compliment."

An(tone's)-niversary!

You won't find a long list of things that Susan Antone will admit to being more of a chore than getting together the club's anniversary shows, but I suspect their efforts will be worth the trouble. Among the planned festivities, which have already begun, you'll find: Storyville prepping on Friday for the July 16 release of their new album; a special tribute to Clifton Chenier with C.J. Chenier and Buckwheat Zydeco, along with a host of players from Clifton's bands over the years on Monday; and what's been the biggest scheduling hassle so far on Wednesday. That night, look for Kim Wilson, Jimmy Rogers, and Hubert Sumlin to get it together. Look too for Angela Strehli, Willie Smith, Pinetop Perkins, Earl King, Snooky Pryor, and Lazy Lester (one of Jimmie Vaughan's faves). Among the unlisted special guests, I know that Doyle Bramhall II has finished his recording duties in California and is aching to get back here, and a certain celebrity associated with summer holidays may just get into the act as well. Oh, getting back to this Friday, that's the night KGSR will also be giving away a guitar autographed by -- well, a lot of people.

Antone's isn't the only venue celebrating an anniversary this week. For another, there's Charlie's Attic, where this weekend (Friday 4pm-midnight, Saturday noon-1am) they'll be celebrating Charlie's birthday with music from Axe Murders, Bad Barney, and Safer Rhodes, along with barbecue, wet T-shirt contests, and tons of hot boiled peanuts.

The Three "S"s

Spoon has returned from a three-week, six-country European jaunt with Guided by Voices where they found, among other things, that the German Rolling Stone gave them a better review than the U.S. version. What they haven't found, however, is a permanent bass player -- and I can think of at least three people with whom I've spoken in the last two days who'll be delighted to hear that. The band has also just made another video, this one for their second single, "Not Turning Off." A third single is already in the works with the band recording new material for the B-side, which will likely make it an EP. The B-side for their current UK single, oddly enough, is a cover of Prince's "Party Up," which will not be on the local Prince covers comp mentioned in both music features this week. The band is off to tour the midwest August 6 with Archers of Loaf.

Sincola can do without hearing the word "video" any time soon. Following their shooting of "One Hit Wonder," they rate their injuries as follows: #1: Chepo Peña fell backwards over a boulder and required staples in the back of his head "to keep his two hemispheres in communication." #2: Kris Patterson "played her guitar until her hand was bleeding all over the place." #3: Tie between Terri Lord, for getting a split lip during the "rumble" scene, and Greg Wilson for "believing he could defy the laws of nature" and refusing to wear sunscreen during the long shooting in a 110deg. quarry. (Lord could still pull ahead if it turns out she did any damage to her notoriously troublesome back.) Far off in the distance at #5 is Rebecca Cannon, who received a "teeny-weeny scratch on her elbow."

Sixteen Deluxe has officially chosen their new drummer, and it isn't Lyman Hardy. As hinted in our "Recommended" column last week, Steve Hall, ex-of Andromeda Strain, is taking that spot. The 16D-ers stand firm that the Strain broke up before, not because of, this fact (see "Live Shots" for an account of that band's last gig). And you probably won't be seeing much of Hall or the rest of his new band this summer, as 16D will be in the studio recording an EP for a label other than Trance Syndicate. All this leaves Hardy free for more Ed Hall gigs, but as you know, their last Austin gig is on August 3. I say last Austin gig because there's a possibility that an interested party might pay to fly Larry Strub out of Thailand later for some non-local shows.

Big in Japan

Yeesh! When you converse with people in other countries, make sure you know what you're saying! The members of Cotton Mather, who, along with Javelin Boot, have been building a following in the Land of the Rising Sun, recently replied to correspondence from the Japanese 'zine Your Genuine Fan Club akaThe Attack of the Mars with what they thought was a rhetorical "drop by sometime" only to find three lovely young Japanese ladies appear on their doorstep this week. After recovering from his surprise and doing his best to find the girls decent accommodations, Robert Harrison says he proceeded to show them around the Austin area, including taking them on a "disastrous" tubing expedition in San Marcos. After misunderstanding the concept and leaving the bulk of their clothing behind on the shore, one of the trio then ended up getting stung by a wasp, a situation made all the worse because, as Harrison soon found, "they had never encountered a stinging insect before." The zinesters were seen at Monday's "secret" Diamond Smugglers show, where they didn't seem to understand what was so funny and were noticeably disturbed whenever Black Flag commercials came on the Hole in the Wall's TV set.

Mixed Notes

Bob Mould will be playing his first gig in support of his solo album (unless you count those shows with his doppelganger Pete Townshend) on July 16 at the MacFest in New York City. More importantly to you, he has announced that a fall tour is in the works... Good night for Austin acts on the networks Tuesday as Willie Nelson guested on Letterman and Alejandro Escovedo appeared on Conan O'Brien shortly thereafter... Don't Look Back, the HBO movie in which the Derailers can be seen lip-synching a tune as the bar band, makes its debut on Saturday. Tony Villanueva says they "had a hard time not making any sound -- we thought we'd be replaced at any given time with a `real' movie band who didn't make any sound." Look for more TV appearances from the band, among them TNN's Prime Time Country... In-stores: At Waterloo Records, Podunk will be playing this Friday, Storyville will play Tuesday, both shows are at 5pm. Spindrift are at Tower this Friday at 5pm, and since 2,000 people swamped Ricky Trevino last time he tried to sign autographs here, this time he'll be all the way out at the Wal-Mart in Round Rock for an in-store from 6-8pm on Monday. (Now that I think about it, though, he probably has more fans in Round Rock than here. Uh-oh!)...

-- Contributors: Christopher Gray, Raoul Hernandez, Andy Langer, Margaret Moser

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More Dancing About Architecture
Dancing About Architecture
Dancing About Architecture
The last installment of "Dancing About Architecture."

Ken Lieck, Jan. 3, 2003

So Long, Slug
So Long, Slug

Ken Lieck, Dec. 20, 2002

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