Column 42: a grab-bag of old news, MavRadio ; Danny Pound (of Vitreous Humor) tonight

Category: Blog — @ 12:27 pm September 15, 2005

My original intention was to write the column that’ll appear next week this week, but interviews and schedules couldn’t be worked out. So instead, I wrote the following, which is somewhat old news for any local indie music fan who spends any amount of time on the web. That said, one must remember that the initial audience for my columns are the fine folks who pick up The Reader, and the intent all along has been to cull items that appear in the daily Lazy-i “blog” once a week to educate and inform the poor unwashed masses who still read the printed word. So, you daily readers of Lazy-I will have read some of the the following already. Perhaps most of note (and what you haven’t seen here yet) is the item about MavStock this weekend at UNO. I don’t listen to or follow the bands that are on slated to perform at the event, but I do support MavRadio and the artists on its playlist. It is, perhaps, truly wishful thinking that the station could ever get a real license and tower, and that Omaha would finally get a radio station that actually plays college music. I think for a variety of reasons both economic and political that it’ll never happen, but if a miracle were ever to occur, it would begin at Saturday’s fund-raiser at UNO’s Milo Bail student center. As the column suggests, go to www.mavradio.org for more details. Drop by and drop some cash in the bucket. You’ll be helping the folks in New Orleans and the future of local college radio at the same time.

Column 42 — An (Old Country) Buffet of Music News
Saddle Creek, Cursive, Ladyfinger and MavStock

This week, a few observations, rumors, suggestions and hyperbole — the stuff that make columns worth reading.

— In Saddle Creek news: Touched by the devastation and need coming out of the Gulf port states, Omaha’s premiere record label is putting together a compilation CD whose proceeds will go entirely to The Red Cross for Hurricane Relief. Among those signed up are a cadre of local superstars, including Bright Eyes, Cursive, The Faint, The Good Life, Mayday, Orenda Fink, Maria Taylor, Broken Spindles and Criteria. The Creek says the collection will be available on iTunes shortly, while the CD version will be available for order from saddle-creek.com in the coming days. It’s just another way to do your part to help get the Gulf and its people back on their feet.

— And speaking of getting back on their feet, so is Saddle Creek band Cursive. The scuttlebutt was that the band had been preparing to hit the road. Now in a move reserved for the likes of The Rolling Stones and U2, they’re performing as an opening act under assumed names for a mini-tour leading up to the CMJ Music Festival in NYC (where they’ll be a surprise “special guest” at the Saddle Creek showcase at the Bowery Ballroom Sept. 15). Cursiverarmy.com spilled the beans late last week with this post on its homepage:

“You should look for the following bands in the next week or two: Flippy and Hambone, T Lite & the Heavies, Jazz Hessian, Cursifix, Stuffy Dumbfuck, and Sgt. Snippy, in these cities: Chicago, Columbus, OH; Wilkes Barre, PA; New London, CT, North Manchester, IN, and Lansing, MI. Oh boy, if you like seeing Cursive you should really see these shows.”

— So who is the pseudo-Cursive opening for? None other Ladyfinger — Omaha’s current “It” band. I caught Ladyfinger’s pre-tour warm-up at O’Leaver’s last Friday with The Third Men — themselves a pop-rock gem the combines Matthew Sweet pop, Replacements bar, dB’s cool and a little bit of The Feelies irascibility thrown in for good measure.

Maybe Ladyfinger can do what another gutter-groove band from the past was unable to. That band was Ritual Device — one of the city’s Golden Age icons, the band that often gets left out of the who-influenced-Creek discussions though they, along with Mousetrap, undoubtedly laid the foundation for the label’s heavier acts (Beep Beep comes to mind). Ladyfinger is the Second Coming of Ritual Device except they’re faster, and in some respects, harder than RD ever was. But in spite of their fleetness, they bare RD’s unmistakable knack for finding a head-bobbing groove via their rhythm section and chop guitar. What they don’t have is a frontman like Ritual’s Tim Moss, who was not only a stage ham, but a real factor in RD’s overall sound. Not so with Ladyfinger’s vocalists Ethan Jones and Chris Machmuller. Blame the mix, blame the sheer volume of the band, but I could not hear their vocals all night, and when I did, they were mere wisps before a hurricane. They certainly have the vocal chops — by god they both can sing better than Moss (Hell, I can sing better than Moss).

— And finally, there is MavStock. As an alum, I feel compelled to talk about this one-day, six-band music festival to be held at UNO’s Milo Bail Student Center Sept. 17, if only for the charities involved. Proceeds reaped from your $5 attendance fee will be split between the American Red Cross and MavRadio. The student-run station has a transmitter on UNO’s North Campus broadcasting at 93.7 FM. It can only be heard, however, on campus. Their biggest potential audience comes from those who listen via the webstream at mavradio.org. As I type this, the station is playing Spoon “I Turn My Camera On,” leading into Aqualung, “Brighter Than Sunshine.” Imagine if this station ever got a real license and transmitter. Dare to dream…

MavStock begins at around 3 p.m. The all-local lineup includes Liquid Static, Endeavor, Dielated, Emphatic and Smilin Liar, and headliner Venaculas. Find out more at mavradio.org.

Tonight’s marquee must-not-miss-show: In 1998 Lawrence band Vitreous Humor released Posthumous, a collection of singles and whatnot that were released throughout their brief history. You can read my review of it here. The kicker was that the CD was released after the band had disbanded. Frontman Danny Pound continued on in The Regrets and now The Danny Pound Band, which also includes Zoom bassist Jeremy Sidener. Most people don’t remember either Vitreous Humor or Zoom, but both were among my favorite bands from the late-’90s that performed at one time or other at the old Capitol Bar & Grill. Well, Danny Pound band is playing tonight at O’Leaver’s along with hot Lawrence band Arthur Dodge and the Horsefeathers (mentioned in yesterday’s Pomonas story), and Landon Hedges‘ Fine Fine Automobiles (with Kyle Harvey and Tyler Cook). This is a show that should not be missed. I predict that word of its quality will leak out to Omaha’s trendy underbelly and it could actually get crowded, so get there early. It starts at 9:30. It costs $5.

–Got comments? Post ’em here.

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