Live Review: the Terminals, Brimstone Howl; LJS music story…

Category: Blog — @ 6:50 pm December 17, 2007

After a company Christmas party, I checked out Chris Aponick’s birthday bash Saturday night at The Waiting Room — quite a crowd (maybe 100?). The Terminals’ present to Chris was putting on what I think was their best live performance — blistering hot. Whenever I listen to The Terminals these days I get nervous, almost twitchy, thanks to their sheer speed and abrasiveness. They no longer sound like a “garage punk” band. Their style is edgier, almost brazenly jolting, as nervous as a triple shot of espresso. Brimstone Howl, on the other hand, brought more of a groove, but even they are straying from their original garage punk origins, pushing bracingly closer to ’70s NYC punk territory (Ramones meets The Stooges). Like a finely crafted hot rod, their music goes in only one direction and has only one gear — loud and fast.

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Lincoln Journal Star‘s L. Kent Wolgamott wrote a massively long story on the future of music sales in Sunday’s LJS that quotes Homer’s Prez Mike Fratt and Saddle Creek Records Exec Robb Nansel. The nut of the story is nothing new: Record sales are spiraling down. As a result, labels, retailers and musicians have to find a way to make money in a era when more and more listeners are merely downloading music for free. Among the topics discussed are the dreaded “360 degree deal,” the “regionalism” of music and the “middle-classing” of musicians. Even Nansel admitted that Creek is being impacted by the sales slump. “Five years ago, we could put out any record and sell a couple thousand without any trouble,” he said in the LJS article. “That’s not the case anymore. That Ladyfinger record is a prime example. It sold about 200 copies. How could a record released on a label sell only 200 copies?” Nansel even indicated that the future could bring more 360 deals — where artists are forced to share revenues with labels generated not only by record sales, but merch and touring income. “That model is probably the direction things will go,” Nansel said in the article. “The record label has to evolve. The label needs to operate more like a manager. Whether you sell pre-recorded music or not, there’s still going to be a business side to a band’s career.” Fratt, on the other hand, said any band that did a 360 deal would be “sort of a fool.” Read the whole article here.

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