The Austin Chronicle

Off the Record

Music News

By Austin Powell, April 15, 2011, Music

Crime and Punishment

In the early morning of Oct. 13, 1985, Natalie Antonetti was bludgeoned with a children's baseball bat as she lay asleep on the couch of her Barton Hills apartment. Her then-16-year-old son, local rocker Johnny Goudie, and his girlfriend at the time, Susan Otten, awoke to find her head split open, blood seeping onto the white sofa. Antonetti ultimately slipped into a coma and died 18 days later at Brackenridge Hospital. She was 38.

Such is the scene Assistant District Attorney Mark Pryor painted in intense detail during his opening statement at the 167th Judicial District Court of Travis County on Tuesday morning. After more than two decades, Antonetti's ex-boyfriend, Dennis Davis, was indicted for murder and intent to cause death. A studio engineer and former owner of the local recording complex Studio D, located roughly one mile from the incident and with a clientele that included Charlie Sexton, the Fabulous Thunderbirds, and Sue Foley, Davis was interviewed after the attack but his alibi was never verified. That changed in 2007, when his wife, Rebecca Davis, made an anonymous phone call to the Austin Police Department's homicide hotline. After further investigation, Dennis Davis was apprehended in Nashville, Tenn., in June 2009.

This is by no means an open-and-shut case, however. There's no hard evidence linking Davis to the crime, but rather what Pryor called "a trail of bread crumbs." Much of the trial likely hinges on the testimony of Gelinda Mudgett (then Gelinda Squires), a victim of Davis' abuse and to whom the defendant allegedly confessed. After being denied spousal privilege, Rebecca Davis will also be called to testify. On Tuesday, Otten and Goudie took the witness stand, the latter for close to two hours, going over the details and photos of the morning in question.

"I asked her for a kiss before going into the emergency room," Goudie recalled with painful reservation. It was their last interaction.

The trial, which is being followed by CBS' 48 Hours, is expected to run through the remainder of the week. Meanwhile, Goudie, whose résumé includes Steamboat favorite Mr. Rocket Baby and cover band Skyrocket!, is scheduled to appear at Momo's on Saturday with Kacy Crowley and their new project, Liars & Saints.

Born This Way

The circus came to town last Wednesday, and her name is Lady Gaga. Selling out months in advance, the self-proclaimed Fame Monster brought a Beatlemania-type frenzy to the Frank Erwin Center. With a revolving backdrop that looked like the set of Rent as rendered by Austin's House of Torment, Ms. Germanotta launched a two-hour spectacle of shock therapy and harsh electro-pop that trolled through most of her relatively small catalog, including smash hits "Alejandro," "Poker Face," and "Telephone." Equal parts Aladdin Sane-era David Bowie and Erotica-era Madonna, the 25-year-old became evangelist, exhibitionist, exorcist, and even inspirational speaker. In one Hallmark moment, she called a fan on her cell phone and then donated $20,000 to charity for her answering; in the next, she bit off the head of a Barbie doll thrown onstage. But Lady Gaga thrives in her many contradictions, as when she took a spiked heel to the literally flaming new piano ballad "You and I." While there may have been similarities to Janet Jackson's recent hit parade at ACL Live at the Moody Theater (see "Control," Earache! Music Blog, April 5), Gaga pointed out one key difference with defiant pomp: "You should never pay to watch some rich bitch lip synch. I never have and never will."

Pinball Wizard

Trailer Space Records is putting its own spin on this Saturday's Record Store Day, the annual holiday for indie retailers and music geeks alike. "Fifty percent off if you can shotgun three beers in three minutes in front of us," spouts owner Spot. The sale's indicative of the shop's punk aesthetic and Eastside charm. Since opening in February 2008, Trailer Space has become a hub for the Casual Victim Pile crowd, boasting a few arcade games, a couch for lounging, and inventory acquired exclusively from small distributors and bands. While business has remained relatively steady, the regular in-store appearances keep getting better. The Zoltars perform on Saturday, April 16; followed on Wednesday, April 20, by Trailer Space house band the Golden Boys, Followed by Static, and Shawn David McMillen; and upcoming CD release parties for Elvis (April 22) and the Strange Attractors (April 29). For coveted Record Store Day exclusives, you'll have to hit up one of Austin's other esteemed outlets, like metal sanctuary Encore Records, blues staple Antone's Records, or vinyl emporiums Backspin and Breakaway Records. Eric Johnson signs copies of Up Close at Waterloo Records (3pm) before giving way to the Toadies (5pm), while Apache Dropout bombs End of an Ear (5pm). Plan ahead, start early, and spend accordingly. See for more details.

OTR's Record Store Day Wish List

13th Floor Elevators, "Wait for My Love" b/w "May the Circle Remain Unbroken" (Snapper)

The Black Angels, Phosgene Nightmare (Blue Horizon)

Big Star, Third [Test Pressing Edition] (Omnivore)

Derek & the Dominos, "Got To Get Better in a Little While" b/w "Layla" (UMe)

Gorillaz, The Fall (Virgin)

Green Day/Hüsker Dü split, "I Don't Want To Know If You Are Lonely" (WBR)

International Submarine Band, Safe at Home (Sundazed)

Mastodon/ZZ Top split, "Just Got Paid" (WBR)

Red Crayola, "Hurricane Fighter Plane" b/w "Pink Stainless Tail" (Snapper)

Television, Live at the Old Waldorf (Rhino)

Random Play

The biggest little indie band in town, Sounds Under Radio, landed its single "Sing" on American Idol's new commercials. That's thanks in part to the group's new partnership with the MuseBox, the New York-based promotion company/label whose previous clients include MGMT and the Killers. The local alt-rock act drops its EMI-distributed second album, Where My Communist Heart Meets My Capitalist Mind, next month.

Rockabilly punk Nick Curran has postponed his upcoming tour for further surgery to remove a cancerous growth on his tongue. "Just another small bump in the road," he wrote on his Facebook page.

Daytrotter uploaded a new session by Mike & the Moonpies and added the local honky-tonkers to the final two dates of its annual Barnstormer tour later this month. Other local favorites to visit the influential website's Big Orange studio include Soft Healer, Monahans, Pink Nasty, Crooks, and the Black. Download the free sessions at

Hot Tracks!!! clients, including Leatherbag, the Gary, Danny Malone, and David Wingo of Ola Podrida, are taking part in a two-stage benefit at Club de Ville on Friday, April 15. All proceeds will be used to help relocate Matthew Smith's recording studio, whose previous facility was condemned by the city last month.

At a press conference on Tuesday, Tavo Hellmund of Full Throttle Productions confirmed that the new Formula One race site will feature a 25,000-capacity open-air live music venue. For more see "Formula One for All," News.

For the first time since its initial release, The Grateful Dead Movie, filmed at a 1974 concert, returns to the big screen with previously unseen interviews with Jerry Garcia on Wednesday, April 20, 7:30pm. Check Film Listings for participating theatres.

The Avett Brothers have canceled their headlining appearance at Old Settler's Music Festival on Friday, due to the birth of Scott Avett's second child. While a venue hasn't been confirmed, unused day passes will be honored at the scheduled makeup show on Oct. 16.

The Chronicle Music staff, affectionately dubbed Double Fantasy, attempt to retain their title at the second annual Mind Over Music trivia challenge at Palm Door on Monday, April 18. Proceeds from general-admission heckling ($15) benefits Grounded in Music.

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