Desa plays a secret show; Big Al’s Free Fest starts today…

Category: Blog — Tags: , — @ 12:38 pm April 24, 2012
Conor Oberst of Desaparecidos at Slowdown Jr. April. 23, 2012. Photo by Dan Thompson III.

Conor Oberst of Desaparecidos at Slowdown Jr. April. 23, 2012. Photo by Dan Thompson III.

by Tim McMahan,

Based on email/text logs, word started spreading at around 10 last night that Desaparecidos finally was getting around to that secret show that never happened last week, moving the venue from O’Leaver’s to Slowdown Jr. This one was, indeed, kept a secret almost up to the moment they hit the stage. Thankfully I was deep in the Land of Nod when all this was going down, saving me the guilt of not going due to a 4:30 a.m. wake-up call this morning.

That said, Kevin Coffey was in the house and filed this review for the Omaha World-Herald, as was’s Steve Ashford (here’s his review). And so was local shooter Dan Thompson III, who shot the above image of Conor in full rage. The biggest news of the night: The band played two new songs, furthering speculation that this reunion is more than a series of one-off shows. I would not be surprised if a new album is in the works, along with a formal tour. Desa fever is definitely catching. Memo to the MAHA Music Festival guys: If the amount of internet buzz (and traffic to my site over the past two days) is any indication, they better start printing more tickets for this year’s festival.

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Tonight at The Hideout, 320 So. 72nd St., it’s the opening night of the annual Big Al Free Music Festival. Now in its fifth year, Al will be hosting shows all week long featuring four to five local bands per evening. The gigs are free, the merch is free (In fact, Al’s goal is to distribute 1,000 local CDs this week). Check out the full schedule here.

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Read Tim McMahan’s blog daily at — an online music magazine that includes feature interviews, reviews and news. The focus is on the national indie music scene with a special emphasis on the best original bands in the Omaha area. Copyright © 2012 Tim McMahan. All rights reserved.

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