Ten Questions with Peach Kelli Pop; The Good Life, Speedy Ortiz tonight…

Category: Blog,Interviews — Tags: , , , — @ 1:55 pm May 24, 2016
Speedy Ortiz at O'Leaver's, 8/15/15. The band plays tonight at The Waiting Room.

Speedy Ortiz at O’Leaver’s, 8/15/15. The band plays tonight at The Waiting Room.

by Tim McMahan, Lazy-i.com

Peach Kelli Pop is Canadian Allie Hanlon and four other women playing jangling, abrasive, driving straight-four beach-flavored punk rock that sounds like go-carts and too much coffee. On the blink-and-you’ll-miss-it LP, Peach Kelli Pop III (2015, Burger Records), Hanlon and her band race through 10 songs in just over 20 minutes — simple math tells you that averages about two minutes per song, just long enough for punk rock. Popular themes are video games, Chinese food and conspiracy theorists as well as the usual songs of love.

We caught up with Hanlon and asked her to take our Ten Questions survey. Here’s what she had to say:

1. What is your favorite album?

Allie Hanlon: Red Cross’ s/t EP, released 1980

2. What is your least favorite song?

“(You’re) Having my Baby” by Paul Anka

3. What do you enjoy most about being in a band?

Free stuff! Just kidding, I like going on adventures, traveling and playing music with 4 really cool girls.

4. What do you hate about being in a band?

Having your work and time constantly devalued. Also rude sound people

5. What is your favorite substance (legal or illegal)?

Ice-cream & fancy cheese

6. In what city or town do you love to perform?

Tokyo, Japan will always be #1.

7. What city or town did you have your worst gig (and why)?

Our shows in Nashville have sucked the last few years, so we stopped playing there. On tour in Europe last fall, we played a show in France where we were playing on the floor, with some drunk, confrontational people inches from my face during our entire set. They spilled beer all over my pedals. I don’t condone violence, but I was ready throw down.

8. How do you pay your bills?

Usually via credit card over the phone.

9. What one profession other than music would you like to attempt; what one profession would you absolutely hate to do?

Canine massage therapist or a psychic. I think I’d be a great aerobics instructor as well. I would hate being a meter maid or having any profession involving sales.

10. What are the stories you’ve heard about Omaha, Nebraska?

Growing up in Ottawa, Canada, I didn’t know anything about Omaha, NE. I learned about Saddle Creek Records and its bands, which were really influential when I was a little teen, and became more familiar. The rich music history makes Omaha stand out. I also heard that 311 is from Omaha which is pretty cool.

Peach Kelli Pop plays with The Way Out Wednesday, May 25, at Reverb Lounge, 6121 Military Ave. Tickets are $8, showtime is 9 p.m. For more information, go to onepercentproductions.com.

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One of the biggest shows of the month is happening tonight at The Waiting Room where The Good Life kicks off its latest tour in support of their 2015 Saddle Creek release, Everybody’s Coming Down. That alone is worth the price of admission, but then you add indie superstars Speedy Ortiz and you’ve got yourself a monster of a show. But wait, there’s more. Local indie rockers Oquoa are opening the show. All this entertainment for a mere $15. The show starts at 9 p.m.

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Read Tim McMahan’s blog daily at Lazy-i.com — 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 © 2016 Tim McMahan. All rights reserved.

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Conor Oberst talks Dolores Diaz and the Standby Club (Saturday at The Waiting Room)…

Category: Blog,Interviews — Tags: , , — @ 12:47 pm May 19, 2016
Dolores Diaz & the Standby Club, from left, are Ben Brodin, Miwi La Lupa, Dan McCarthy, Roger Lewis, Corina Figueroa, Mike Mogis, Matt Maginn and Conor Oberst. Not pictures is Phil Schaffart.

Dolores Diaz & the Standby Club, from left, are Ben Brodin, Miwi La Lupa, Dan McCarthy, Roger Lewis, Corina Figueroa, Mike Mogis, Matt Maginn and Conor Oberst. Not pictured is Phil Schaffart.

by Tim McMahan, Lazy-i.com
What do you do for fun when musically you can do anything you want? You put together a country cover band.

That’s what Conor Oberst did with his wife, Corina Figueroa, and their two roommates, Roger Lewis and Miwi La Lupa.

The project began last November strictly as a lark. Among the belongings La Lupa brought with him when he moved to Omaha from Brooklyn was a copy of Them Old Country Songs, a 1972 “various artists” classic that includes songs by the likes of Skeeter Davis, Connie Smith, Porter Wagoner and Dolly Parton.

“We love this record,” Oberst said last week over drinks at his Dundee bar, Pageturners Lounge, while fellow Standby Club member Dan McCarthy pounded out ragtime tunes on the bar’s upright piano. “I’ve not been a person to cover a lot of songs. It was nice to learn new ones. I’ve never played songs with this many key changes before.”

Oberst said Figueroa has a great voice and loves to sing, so it made sense to give the band a try. “She’s sang with me a few times before,” he said. “She was super excited at practice, but for that first show, she was extremely nervous. We all were.”

The rest of band is made up of people Oberst said are part of his extended household: Phil Schaffart, Oberst’s partner on the road and in running Pageturners; Mike Mogis and Ben Brodin, whose studio, ARC, is practically an extension of Oberst’s home, and Cursive’s Matt Maginn, who at one time also lived with Oberst.

“No one in the band is a country player in any way, shape or form,” Oberst said. “Even Mike (Mogis) doesn’t consider himself a country player. He doesn’t know all the Nashville things. The guy who’s most dialed in is Ben. He can play anything.”

The band’s first gig, at O’leaver’s Jan. 3 of this year, included covers of songs by the aforementioned country legends along with Charlie Pride, Sammi Smith, Bob Dylan and Randy Newman and more. The evening’s music was recorded and is online at liveatoleavers.com. Expect to hear a lot of those numbers when the band plays at The Waiting Room Saturday, May 21, along with a few new covers, possibly including “Honey Won’t You Open the Door” by Ricky Skaggs and “Good Girl Gone Bad” by Tammy Wynette.

Oberst said unlike playing in one of his other bands, this band has access to an unlimited musical catalog. “I never realized all the virtues of being in a cover band,” he said. “We’re never going to run out of good songs.”

It’s unlikely this band will ever enter a recording studio. “It sounds like a joke, but I feel like we’re a good band for parties and weddings and funerals and all that kind of stuff,” Oberst said. “It would seem weird to record covers, and I don’t know if we’d ever have originals, definitely not for this show.”

La Lupa, who sat next to Oberst during the interview, said the band may be “just for fun,” but that it takes the music seriously. “Someone wrote a review after our first show and said it sounds like we didn’t practice or something, and we were all kind of bummed,” La Lupa said. “We practice more for this band than any other band we play with. We’ll be practicing a lot over the next week.”

The band’s name, The Standby Club, grew out of a phrase used by a friend of Oberst’s who does film editing of live sporting events. “He always says ‘standby,’ and began using the phrase in everyday life,” Oberst said. “The Standby Club — I thought it would sound dope.”

As for Figueroa’s musical nom de plume, Oberst said she was afraid about going on stage. “I suggested putting on a persona, like a Superman cape,” he said. “Dolores Diaz is a Spanglish version of Doris Day and has an old Hollywood sound to it.”

“And it works out because the name ‘Dolores’ signifies heartbreak,” La Lupa said, adding that the name means “sorrow” in English, a fact that surprised Oberst, who quickly added, “We’re going to have some nice T-shirts made.”

Dolores Diaz & the Standby Club plays with Carl Miller & The Thrillers Saturday, May 21, at The Waiting Room, 6212 Maple St. Tickets are $10; showtime is 9 p.m. For more information, go to onepercentproductions.com.

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Read Tim McMahan’s blog daily at Lazy-i.com — 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 © 2016 Tim McMahan. All rights reserved.

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Live Review: Shannon & the Clams on the river, Halfwit; Ten Questions with A Giant Dog (at Milk Run tonight)…

Shannon & The Clams performing aboard The River City Star, May 15, 2016.

Shannon & The Clams performing aboard The River City Star, May 15, 2016.

by Tim McMahan, Lazy-i.com

I’m growing tired of this cold weather. I imagined how much more pleasant last night’s “Sailin’ and Wailin’ Boat Cruise on the River City Star” would have been had the temps been 20 degrees warmer. Instead, it was cold and windy and I’m happy I wore my insulated hoodie.

Weather issues aside, Perpetual Nerves has a hit on its hands if it decides to do more of these River City Star concerts, because last night’s was a blast. The cruise couldn’t have gone smoother. If you weren’t on board by 6:55 you were left standing on the shore. In fact, I know one party of people, only seconds late, who had to practically fight their way to the deck (heroically saved by booker Sam Parker).

The River City Star is a small two-story river boat that launches from Freedom Park near the Gallup campus. The festive bottom deck was where the free keg and cash bar were located. Those standing in line were serenaded by the finest party music (from Prince to  Tom Tom Club) via a DJ. With drink in hand it was up to the top deck where Nathan Ma and The Rosettes were already performing as the boat drifted away from the dock. I recognized among the band mates Sarah Bohling of Icky Blossoms adding vocals. Their music was a mix of garage and indie, including a cover of The La’s “There She Goes” that got the loudest applause.

They were followed at 8 p.m. sharp by Shannon and the Clams, an Oakland-based four piece that played early ’60s-style garage rock with doo-wap and surf elements. It felt very much like a very hip sock hop played on a drifting dance floor, all the while floating past either Deliverance-style river-bottoms foliage or urban industrial decay. For every bit of picturesque wildlife (geese, flying fish) there was a reminder that you were adrift on a river of dark brown sewage.  Floating up and down the Missouri River, we were met time and time again by a large white half-submerged floating upright refrigerator. Was there someone inside it, traveling to the Gulf of Mexico? We’ll never know.

The sound, by the way, was amazing. No doubt the river people, who were either fishing or dumping garbage along the shore, could easily hear the bands, and wondered who those lucky bastards having the time of their lives?

The obvious question on everyone’s minds: Why doesn’t Perpetual Nerves book these cruises all the time, or at least once a month during the warm months? Especially considering it sold out the same day it was announced (within hours of the announcement).

Halfwit at O'Leaver's, May 13, 2016.

Halfwit at O’Leaver’s, May 13, 2016.

Friday night I caught Halfwit at O’Leaver’s. The Lincoln band fronted by Dan Jenkins of Ideal Cleaners and including bass-playing madman Saber Blazek crushed the crowd with heavy rock that bordered on proggy metal. The guitar interplay between Jenkins and guitarist Kevin Waltemath was next level amazing. Unfortunately the usually high-flying Blazek was seated for the performance, a victim of some sort of foot injury judging by the massive isolation boot he was wearing. I tried to imagine him at full thrash. Probably would have take out a wall or two. I’m told the performance was recorded for a possible future Live at O’Leaver’s set. Keep your fingers crossed.

Well Aimed Arrows at O'Leaver's May 13, 2016.

Well Aimed Arrows at O’Leaver’s May 13, 2016.

Last up was Well Aimed Arrows playing their usual brand of stripped down, minimalistic post New Wave music that combines almost atonal vocals with intricate rhythms. People who “get them” love them, and those who don’t are left scratching their heads. Their loss. If you grew up with very early REM or Wire — of if you’re old enough to remember groundbreaking ’90s Omaha band The Protoculture — seek them out immediately.

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A Giant Dog plays at Milk Run tonight.

A Giant Dog plays at Milk Run tonight.

Tonight at Milk Run Austin indie band A Giant Dogs perform. Just this second, I received back a Ten Questions response from the band. Here it is:

1. What is your favorite album? 

A Giant Dog: Sparks,  Angst In My Pants. This is one of our favorite albums and we have been doing a cover of “Angst In My Pants” at our shows recently. Sparks had a big influence on us when recording the new record, PILE, and this album is on repeat while driving on tour.

2. What is your least favorite song?

It’s a never ending list. Nothing in particular comes to mind.

3. What do you enjoy most about being in a band?

We started our band as a way to have fun, make music and hangout with other bands in Austin and around the country. We’ve also been close friends since high school and played in different bands together. So it’s great being able to play music and travel with your long time buds. Aside from that aspect, we’re generally unsettled with how repetitive, boring and predictable rock music can be. One of the best things about being in a band is considering the bleakness out there and then finding ways to make a song more creative, interesting and against the grain. I’m not sure how well we do that, but it’s something we enjoy trying to do.

4. What do you hate about being in a band?

The music biz is tough right now and that is a constant frustration we and other bands have to work around. Music has always been tough, but I think it’s okay to say there is a lot less money now than in the early 2000’s pre-Napster. There is a bad gap between good music and getting it to people who will appreciate it. I hope streaming can get its shit together, and this is a problem they need to solve. I know that journalism and film are in the same boat.

5. What is your favorite substance (legal or illegal)?

Mostly weed and more legal substances these days to keep our voices in tact and be able to keep up with the fast pace lifestyle we live. It’s been most interesting buying weed across the U.S. in the last two years. It’s funny buying it in Colorado and then sneaking it through Utah like you’re still at your parents house and sneaking in past curfew.

6. In what city or town do you love to perform?

Minneapolis, Chicago, New York and any town with a passionate promoter who knows how to put together a cool show. The funny thing about live music is that any town can be killer for shows. You just need one guy or gal who loves putting on shows and knows what bands are good.

7. What city or town did you have your worst gig (and why)

Pittsburgh. We showed up to a DIY space that was had the right elements for a good show – big empty house with a good turnout and decent bands booked. But the place was run by kids in pajamas eating ramen. There was a thunderstorm that day and they were afraid of the thunder thinking the show should be canceled. We bought them a six pack and passed on the show.

8. How do you pay your bills?

We work part time or remote jobs in addition to making music. Andrew (guitar/vocals) is a door guy, Graham (bass) makes pizza, Danny (drums is a waiter, Sabrina (singer) works at a Ramen place and has an Airbnb and Andy (guitar) is a software consultant. Multiple incomes is the main way we get by and it’s well worth the time and effort to be able to tour and keep making records.

9. What one profession other than music would you like to attempt; what one profession would you absolutely hate to do

Sabrina was talking about becoming an acupuncturist the other day. Eastern medicine in general is interesting and it seems that could be a rewarding job.

10. What are the stories you’ve heard about Omaha, Nebraska

Nothing yet. Friends have said the Milk Run is cool and a good place to play. Let’s see what stories come from the show tonight.

A Giant Dog performs with Kitten Forever, No Thanks and Worried Mothers tonight at Milk Run, 1907 Leavenworth St. Tickets are $8, show starts at 9 p.m. 

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Read Tim McMahan’s blog daily at Lazy-i.com — 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 © 2016 Tim McMahan. All rights reserved.

Lazy-i

Live Review: Diet Cig, The Front Bottoms; Ten Questions with Cross Record; Day Wave tonight…

Diet Cig at The Slowdown, May 3, 2016.

Diet Cig at The Slowdown, May 3, 2016.

by Tim McMahan, Lazy-i.com

The Slowdown, god bless ’em, runs a show on time. Last night was no exception. I’d raced downtown to catch Diet Cig, who was scheduled to begin their set at 7:30 p.m. — an early start time for any show. A quick dinner and I was tooling down Cuming Street. I arrived at 7:30 to be met by a line that snaked along the sidewalk past the Saddle Creek Store toward Film Streams. As I waited in line I heard Diet Cig playing inside Slowdown. Nobody’s fault but mine.

It took a good 10 to 15 minutes to get inside, but once there, I got to hear at least half of Diet Cig’s set. They’re a new band with a very small selection of songs — they haven’t even released a debut full length as far as I can tell. Only singles and EPs.

Not only are they a new band, they’re a young band, or more precisely, a young duo consisting of frontwoman/guitarist Alex Luciano and drummer Noah Bowman. Their brand of indie is post punk bordering on garage rock, big riffs, big drums and a little voice. The product is cute… no it’s adorable, especially as Luciano in Daisy Dukes does her half-ass chorus-line-style step kicks while bouncing around stage.

What the songs lacked in clarity (I couldn’t understand a word she sang, and blame it partially on the sound mix, which was muddy all night) the duo made up for with brazen energy, managing to get the early-evening crowd to pump their fists. I’m ready to see how they top it when they play the Maha Music Festival this August.

They were followed by Brick + Mortar, a three-piece indie band that wasn’t really a band at all. It was a frontman singing over prerecorded tracks and live drums while a gimp in tight green satin shorts pranced around stage in nipple tassels spraying water into the audience. Meanwhile a gruesome blood-spray video was projected on the big screen behind them.

While their music was not my cup of tea, I salute them for their indie ethic — the band says they’ve done everything on their own, including releasing all their music on their own label (though AllMusic lists their 2013 Bangs EP as having been released by Universal Music). The crowd loved them.

The Front Bottoms at The Slowdown, May 3, 2016.

The Front Bottoms at The Slowdown, May 3, 2016.

Finally at around 9:25 (10 minutes late!) The Front Bottoms took the stage to the screams of their adoring fans who packed the bowl (though this was not a sell out — the balcony was even closed).

I won’t repeat how I described them the last time I saw them because their sound hasn’t changed a lick. Actually, nothing about the band was different than when they played at The Waiting Room three years ago. They even had the same spray-painted backdrop. Why would they change anything? Their fans don’t want them to change. They don’t need elaborate staging, just the band playing the songs they love.

And play they did, with the crowd singing along to every word. I haven’t seen this sort of sing-along since Dashboard Confessional. The quality that Dashboard and Front Bottoms share (other than being unabashedly emo) is a front man who writes songs that any sad sack can relate to, who then sings them with the clearest enunciation. You only have to hear a Front Bottoms song once and you’ll know all the words the next time ’round.

To be fair, about halfway through the set, the band did break out some lighting effects that looked like icicle Christmas lights. And there was a bubble machine and the those floppy “windsock dancers” that are so popular with used car lots.

To me, their set was less enthralling and sloppier than when I saw them last. They rolled out my favorite of their songs, “Au Revoir (Adios)” fairly early in the set and rushed it as if they just wanted to get it out of the way. Still, the crowd was enraptured by the performance, bouncing and singing and waving along to every note.

So far, every time they’ve come to town they’ve played bigger stages, despite having virtually no local airplay. A glance at their wiki entry implies their popularity has been fueled mostly by YouTube videos, which I guess makes them “YouTube phenoms.” You have to assume they’re just going to get bigger, if they don’t burn out first from constant touring along the way. Here’s hoping they sell out Slowdown next time through.

* * *

Cross Record plays at fabulous O'Leaver's Thursday, May 5.

Cross Record plays at fabulous O’Leaver’s Thursday, May 5.

Ten Questions with Cross Record

Cross Record is vocalist Emily Cross and her husband, Dan Duszynski. The couple live a seemingly idyllic life in dusty Dripping Springs, Texas. Reading their bio, you’d believe Cross and Dyszynski fled to the tiny town of 1,788 to escape the hustle-bustle of their former home in Chicago, having “grown fed up with the violence and lack of warmth.” Good story, until you realize the Dripping Springs is located just 24 miles west of Austin, and includes among its residents (according to Wikipedia) Sam Bean of Iron & Wine, Johnny Gimble of the Texas Playboys and Kurt Neumann of BoDeans, and so on.

The contrast is important. Because despite being a half-hour away from one of the largest music cities on the planet, Dripping Springs is also known as the Gateway to the Hill Country. It is, indeed, isolated, especially if you live on an 18-acre rented ranch, which they do. That remoteness permeates Cross Record’s new album, Wabi-Sabi (2016, Ba Da Bing), a wispy collection of big-horizon music often broken mid-song by lightning-crash distortion and/or percussion, as if saying no matter how you try to escape, the din of life will keep on finding you.

We asked Cross Record to take our Ten Questions survey. Emily answered most of them, with help from Dan. Here’s what they had to say:

1. What is your favorite album?



Emily Cross: It changes, depending on my mood. Right now it’s ANTI by Rihanna.

2. What is your least favorite song?

Dan Dyszynski: “I’m Yours” by Jason Mraz.. “It’s the whitest, most generic, singer-songwriter-reggae-ripoff-piece-of-shit in the world”

3. What do you enjoy most about being in a band?

Sharing, communicating, connecting, smiling, making friends.

4. What do you hate about being in a band?

Nothing, really.

5. What is your favorite substance (legal or illegal)?

It’d have to be water. I’m made out of mostly water.

6. What city or town do you love to perform?

Glasgow.

7. What city or town did you have your worst gig (and why)?

Honestly, I don’t like to think about or dwell on my “worst gigs.” Even the worst of shows provide me with some sort of valuable experience. I often feel pretty terrible about my performances, so no single one really stands out in my mind.

8. How do you pay your bills?

I’m a nanny, and I’ve had about a million little odd-jobs.

9. What one profession other than music would you like to attempt; what one profession would you absolutely hate to do?

Full-time animal activist or animal sanctuary owner. Certified Public Accountant.

10. What are the stories you’ve heard about Omaha, Nebraska?

I haven’t heard any stories about Omaha, Nebraska. I’ll have some, soon.

Cross Record plays with Simon Joyner & the Ghosts and Those Far Out Arrows Thursday, May 5, at O’Leaver’s, 1322 So. Saddle Creek Rd. Showtime is 9 p.m. Admission is $6. For more information, go to liveatoleavers.com

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Bonus! Late yesterday afternoon Diet Cig finally supplied the answers to the Ten Questions survey, which went online at The Reader website a few hours prior to last night’s show. Here it is:

1. What is your favorite album?

Diet Cig: Space Jam Soundtrack

2. What is your least favorite song?

Anything by the Talking Heads

3. What do you enjoy most about being in a band?

Getting to tour and meet other people’s pets.

4. What do you hate about being in a band?

Nothing comes to mind… it pretty much all rawwwks.

5. What is your favorite substance (legal or illegal)?

Pixie Sticks (Ed note: Pixy Stix)

6. In what city or town do you love to perform?

Philadelphia!

7. What city or town did you have your worst gig (and why)?

First time in Denver, CO, our car had gotten broken into and we were so bummed out all day, we just wanted the show to be over.

8. How do you pay your bills?

Cash $$$$

9. What one profession other than music would you like to attempt; what one profession would you absolutely hate to do?

Dog walker!!! I’d hate to work at a deli ever again… I still get nightmares about processed meats.

10. What are the stories you’ve heard about Omaha, Nebraska?

Conor Oberst walks around with a super soaker full of Nair on Halloween and terrorizes local kids.

* *

Tonight it’s back to Slowdown Jr. for Day Wave, who you met yesterday. Also on the bill are Lot Walks and Bokr Tov. 8 p.m. showtime, $12.

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Read Tim McMahan’s blog daily at Lazy-i.com — 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 © 2016 Tim McMahan. All rights reserved.

Lazy-i

Ten Questions with Day Wave; The Front Bottoms, Diet Cig tonight…

Category: Blog,Interviews — Tags: , , , , — @ 12:39 pm May 3, 2016
Day Wave plays tomorrow night at Slowdown Jr.

Day Wave plays tomorrow night at Slowdown Jr.

by Tim McMahan, Lazy-i.com

On the new EP Hard to Read (2016, Grand Jury/Fat Possum) Oakland band Day Wave is all Jackson Phillips, who did the Prince thing by performing and recording the album all by his lonesome.

Phillips’ music falls into the same indie dream pop realm as Wild Nothing, Diiv, Black Marble, Violens, Dignan Porch, that slew of bands that have taken the Joy Division/New Order aesthetic and combined it with modern-day gloom.

That said, don’t expect to see only one guy standing behind a keyboard when Day Wave plays Slowdown May 4 (tomorrow night). Phillips will have a touring band in tow to fill out the sound on stage. And it’s a good thing, too, because Day Wave has been added to a slew of festivals this summer, including Lollapalooza, Governor’s Ball and Shaky Knees.

We asked Phillips to take our Ten Questions survey. A man of few words, here’s what he had to say.

1. What is your favorite album?

Day Wave: Hmmm that’s a tough one, I’ll say Brian Eno – Here Come The Warm Jets.

 2. What is your least favorite song?

That song that says “I’ve seen better days” over and over.

3. What do you enjoy most about being in a band?

My favorite part is writing and recording songs, I can do it all day long.

4. What do you hate about being in a band?

I don’t enjoy the lack of sleep that comes with touring.

5. What is your favorite substance (legal or illegal)?

I’m a big fan of almond butter.

6. In what city or town do you love to perform?

I just got back from Australia, that was pretty much one of the best places.

7. What city or town did you have your worst gig (and why)?

I haven’t played any bad shows with Day Wave!

 8. How do you pay your bills?

By check.

9. What one profession other than music would you like to attempt; what one profession would you absolutely hate to do?

I always wanted to be a photo journalist for National Geographic. I never wanted to do anything involving math.

10. What are the stories you’ve heard about Omaha, Nebraska?

I’ve heard it’s haunted.

Day Wave plays with Lot Walks and Bokr Tov Wednesday, May 4, at Slowdown Jr., 729 No. 14th St. Showtime is 8 p.m. Admission is $10 Adv. / $12 DOS. For more information, go to theslowdown.com.

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The Front Bottoms at The Waiting Room, Jan. 12, 2014.

The Front Bottoms at The Waiting Room, Jan. 12, 2014.

I wasn’t expecting much of anything the first time I saw the Front Bottoms back in January 2014, mainly because I’d never heard of them. But I have to tell you, I was blown away. From the review of that show: “Their sound was reminiscent of some of my favorite humor-inflected bands of the ‘90s and ’00s — Atom and his Package, Fountains of Wayne, Too Much Joy, Mountain Goats, Dismemberment Plan, The Hold Steady, The Decemberists — bands that write smart, funny, self-referential lyrics that anyone can relate to.”

And now they’re back tonight at The Slowdown. Joining them is Maha 2016 band Diet Cig. Get a preview of what you’re going to see at Stinson Park this August. Also on the bill is Jersey band Brick + Mortar. This is a 7:30 show; tickets are $21.

Also tonight Minnesota band Cult of Lip plays at Milk Run with Hussies and Super Moon. $7, 9 p.m.

* * *

Read Tim McMahan’s blog daily at Lazy-i.com — 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 © 2016 Tim McMahan. All rights reserved.

Lazy-i

Live Review: Closeness, Thick Paint, BAMF, Relax It’s Science; 10 Questions with The Besnard Lakes…

Closeness at O'Leaver's April 30, 2016.

Closeness at O’Leaver’s April 30, 2016.

by Tim McMahan, Lazy-i.com

Closeness is a new project by Orenda and Todd Fink. We all know who they are, and if you don’t, how’s life been in that cave the past 20 years? A better question: Why have they waited so long before collaborating on music? Maybe they’ve always been collaborating and we just didn’t know it. Regardless, now we get to hear the product of these two musical masterminds, and it’s been worth the wait.

Their kit is an assembly of synths, keyboards and other sound robots placed on tables surrounded by lights, cables and other gizmos. Their equipment looked like an operating theater where the couple was about to perform surgery, but with Orenda donning an electric guitar over her scrubs.

They performed face-to-face, though from my vantage point, Todd mainly looked down or over or into his microphone. Orenda, her microphone echoing with delay, provided most of the vocals, with Todd adding his distorted, vocoder-like harmonies deep or high or robotic. Musically, Closeness goes way beyond what you’d expect. Sure, there were the familiar hypnotic beats, of which Todd always has been a master, but it was the melodies and the counter melodies and the layers upon layers of textured sound that set it apart.

Most songs were thick, mid-tempo grooves reminiscent of Orenda’s O+S material, but there were moments of lilting Caribbean-style tempos and traditional electro-rock you’d expect from The Faint. Their short set was only five songs long. Among my faves was a mid-set corker that featured the couple harmonizing on a slow melody that recalled Low’s Sparhawk and Parker.

No surprise that the crazy-packed crowd loved it and wanted more, but there wasn’t any. So has any of this music been recorded, and who will have the honor of releasing it? Or maybe they’ll release it themselves and then hit the road. Ah, what a life.

Thick Paint at O'Leaver's, April 30, 2016.

Thick Paint at O’Leaver’s, April 30, 2016.

Garnering just as much enthusiasm from the crush mob was Thick Paint, the one-man show featuring Reptar’s Graham Patrick Ulicny. With just a small synth, his voice and his guitar he enraptured the audience with his beautiful songs that, at times, reminded me of early Cat Stevens played to a beat box. Really gorgeous stuff.

I realize I’m going backward through my Saturday night, which actually ended at O’Leaver’s. It began at The Lookout Lounge and the Big Al Music Festival (BAMF) First, a word about The Lookout. No other club in town has managed to capture the glorious, run-down ambiance of ’90s-era Omaha rock venues quite like this place. It was like walking into the past, right down to the smell.

Wagon Blasters at Lookout Lounge April 30, 2016.

Wagon Blasters at Lookout Lounge April 30, 2016.

Like the old Knickerbockers or Capitol Bar, the venue is split in two, with a bar in one room and a decent sized music room adjacent with an impressive elevated stage. Imagine the old Sokol Underground shrunk down to half its size and you get the gist. The walls and ceiling tiles were painted black, and air vents over the stage were appropriately covered in fuzzy grime, no doubt a reminder of decades of cigarette smoke, now long gone. Lookout isn’t fancy, but the best rock clubs rarely are.

Big Al, who has been doing his free festival for nine years. kept things on schedule. I walked in at 8:45 and Wagon Blasters were just getting started — right on time. Gary Dean Davis and  crew looked right at home bouncing on the Lookout stage, belting out their usual high-quality tractor punk. Someone in the crowd of around 30 yelled out “Fishin’ Hole”! Hey, you can’t blame anyone for mistaking these folks for that classic ’90s punk band.

Mike Saklar at Lookout Lounge, April 30, 2016.

Mike Saklar at Lookout Lounge, April 30, 2016.

Mike Saklar took the stage next playing solo electric renditions of songs from his former band, Ravine. Ravine (who you can read about here) was Saklar’s post-Ritual Device band that played very heavy-bordering-on-metal rock music way back in the ’90s. Deconstructed as solo material, the songs sounded more tuneful than I remember them, though Saklar is no less a master on guitar. What are the odds that he could resurrect a few of these songs with a full band?

Relax, It's Science at Lookout Lounge, April 30, 2016.

Relax, It’s Science at Lookout Lounge, April 30, 2016.

Then came Relax, It’s Science, the latest project from drummer Jeremy Stanosheck (ex-Kite Pilot, among others). The trio consisted of Stanosheck and two bass players cranking out huge, anthemic, proggy instrumentals with intricate, powerful rhythms. Each bass took turns providing a semblance of a melody countered by the other’s pounding rhythm lines. It was appropriate that the only spot highlighted on Lookout’s stage was where Stanosheck had his drum kit, because he was center of the attention putting on a clinic with his throaty stick work. It’s time Stanosheck got the respect he deserves.

Hat’s off to Big Al for such a strong line-up. This was the first time I’ve attended one of his festivals, and I was impressed by how it was run. On a table in the back of the room was a large pile of canned and packaged foods destined for the food bank. As Gary Dean Davis said at the end of this set, “Keep feeding the world, Big Al.” Here’s to Year 10.

* * *

Tonight Canada’s Besnard Lakes returns to Omaha, this time at Reverb Lounge. You really should go to this one. Look, it’s a 9 p.m. show but with only one opener (Sub Pop and Burger Records band Jaill, which could be a headliner by themselves).

The Besnard Lakes play tonight at Reverb Lounge.

The Besnard Lakes play tonight at Reverb Lounge.

Ten Questions with The Besnark Lakes.

The Besnard Lakes’ music is so massive, so mammoth, it’s the sound you hear while teetering on the edge of a cliff with the gorge spread out in front of you, the river below a mere silver sliver among the rocks.  The Montreal-based six-piece is centered on the husband-wife core of Jace Lasek and Olga Goreas, who released their first studio album, Volume 1, in 2003 (but which was rereleased by their label, Jagjagwar, in 2007).

While the band is undoubtedly indie — Lasek’s and Goreas’ harmonies are reminiscent of Low — their gorgeously dense music has touch points in ’70s arena rock recalling bands like Yes and Boston, acts that knew how to make their anthems sound majestic. And most of Besnard Lakes’ new album, A Coliseum Complex Museum (2016, Jagjaguwar) is, indeed, majestic — a swirling miasma of beautiful multi-tracked sounds cut to the core by Robbie MacArthur’s sparkling guitar solos. It’s a sound so large one can only wonder how it’ll fit inside tiny Reverb Lounge Monday night.

We asked The Besnard Lakes to take our Ten Questions survey. Here’s what Olga had to say:

1. What is your favorite album?

The Besnard Lakes’ Olga Goreas: Side two of The Beatles’ Abbey Road.

2. What is your least favorite song?

Anything that doesn’t come from a sincere heart.

3. What do you enjoy most about being in a band?

Playing bass. I love that thing so much!

4. What do you hate about being in a band?

I really can’t complain about any aspect of being in a band. It’s pretty much the best job in the world. I don’t know, long rides in the van can get tedious I suppose.  I’ve got restless legs too, but I don’t think I can blame it on being in a band! Just gotta get up and stretch once in a while.

5. What is your favorite substance (legal or illegal)?

I do enjoy a well-made double espresso.  Caffeine is the one drug I could never give up.

6. What city or town do you love performing at?

Chicago has been a special city for us.  The audience is always super appreciative, and the city too is quite lovely.  The old architecture melds with the new really well.  I almost get a Canadian vibe from it too, more than any other American city except maybe Minneapolis. Also love playing Glasgow, London and just the UK in general.  Audiences seem to understand us best in the UK.

7. What city or town did you have your worst gig (and why)?

That honor belongs to Victoria, BC.  It had actually started quite well – we took a ferry from Tsawassen to Victoria and two of our bandmates at the time ran into the drummer from Def Leppard, who happened to be playing the same night in the big arena.  We actually went to see them and then went to play our show.  I don’t know if it was something weird in the air but it was a very strange crowd and we tried to be loud enough to be heard over the rowdies.  Jace was trying to sing a song and just got fed up and told someone in the audience who was basically yelling the whole time to shut the fuck up.  This person replies “get over yourself” to which another person in the audience gets into some altercation and the night basically ended with bar fights and the cops being called. The end!

8. How do you pay your bills?

Online baby!

9. What one profession other than music would you like to attempt; what one profession would you absolutely hate to do?

I went to university and studied Psychology.  I’d like to be a researcher or a clinical psychologist.  The mind is a fascinating creature to me.

I wouldn’t be able to work at a collection agency or anything that involves taking money from people who don’t have it.

10. What are the stories you’ve heard about Omaha, Nebraska?

We played once in Omaha many years ago. There was a college football game and nobody came to our show.  It’s totally fine, that sort of thing happens here for hockey so I get it. I also remember going to a laundromat and seeing bullet holes in the window. I started calling Omaha “Omaharsh” after that.

The Besnard Lakes plays with Jaill Monday, May 2, at Reverb Lounge, 6121 Military Ave. Showtime is 9 p.m. Admission is $12. For more information, go to onepercentproductions.com.

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Read Tim McMahan’s blog daily at Lazy-i.com — 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 © 2016 Tim McMahan. All rights reserved.

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Ten Questions with Iska Dhaaf (playing O’Leaver’s (with its new beer garden) Sunday)…

Category: Blog,Interviews — Tags: , , , , — @ 12:30 pm April 28, 2016

by Tim McMahan, Lazy-i.com

First, thanks to those who noticed that the site was down last night. Seems to have been some sort of data-limit issue. We’re back and better than ever.

There’s actually two reasons to see Iska Dhaaf this Sunday at fabulous O’Leaver’s. The first reason is highlighted below — great band. The second reason is that Sunday is the grand opening of O’Leaver’s massive, out-of-this-world beer garden. Yes, I know the new patio was open to the public last fall, but The Club is celebrating its “official” opening Sunday starting at 11.  You can read the whole story behind O’Leaver’s new beer garden in this rather large story that appeared in The Reader last October.

Onward to Iska Dhaaf…

Iska Dhaaf plays O'Leaver's Sunday, May 1.

Iska Dhaaf plays O’Leaver’s Sunday, May 1.

Ten Questions with Iska Dhaaf

New York City-based duo Iska Dhaaf’s beautiful, tonal, layered, electronic songs pulse with pop-click-bang rhythms that race like a jackrabbit’s heartbeat. On their new album, The Wanting Creature (2016, Brick Lane Records) Nathan Quiroga’s and Benjamin Verdoes’ voices intertwine in an elegant, ghostly ballet that perfectly complements their songs’ haunting stories of modern life with all its complications.

I asked Nate and Benjamin to take our Ten Questions survey. Here’s what they had to say (seemingly in unison):

1. What is your favorite album?

Iska Dhaaf: Kid A by Radiohead

2. What is your least favorite song?

The “Chicken Song” that they play at roller skating rinks. Also, that song by Edwin McCain, “I’ll Be,” or whatever it’s called, is a close second. I hate these songs with a deep unbridled passion. I resent the question, because now they’re stuck in my head.

3. What do you enjoy most about being in a band?

Writing songs and traveling around the world with my best friend to perform them.

4. What do you hate about being in a band?

Business/promotion is probably the worst aspect.

5. What is your favorite substance (legal or illegal)?

Orange juice, or most variations of fruit.

6. In what city or town do you love to perform?

Paris is really amazing.

7. What city or town did you have your worst gig (and why)?

In general, even in the worst venues and towns we find a way to enjoy ourselves and connect with people. There have been plenty of strange and sparsely attended shows, but they’re all valuable.

8. How do you pay your bills?

Strategically and usually with a sense of unease.

9. What one profession other than music would you like to attempt; what one profession would you absolutely hate to do?

Writing novels, short stories, or films. I would hate to be a mortician.

10. What are the stories you’ve heard about Omaha, Nebraska?

I haven’t heard that many. Most of them are in songs that came from Saddle Creek bands. Nate saw his first Fire-Fly there, though. That’s a nice story.

Iska Dhaaf plays with Annalibera, Haunted Gauntlet and Mike Schlesinger & Sean Pratt Sunday, May 1, at O’Leaver’s, 1322 Saddle Creek Rd. Showtime is 9 p.m. Admission is $5. For more information, go to liveatoleavers.com.

* * *

Read Tim McMahan’s blog daily at Lazy-i.com — 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 © 2016 Tim McMahan. All rights reserved.

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Ten Questions with Melvins (playing tonight with Napalm Death, Melt Banana); more evidence of my existence…

Category: Blog,Interviews — Tags: , , , , — @ 12:35 pm April 25, 2016

by Tim McMahan, Lazy-i.com

Pssst… word on the street is that tonight’s Napalm Death / Melvins concert with Melt Banana at The Waiting Room is nearly sold out. Best get your tickets while you can.

Quick note: The Ten Questions articles (like the one below), launched a month or so ago, are also published online in The Reader. I posted this one Saturday, and somehow it got picked up somewhere because the story has more than 400 likes on The Reader website, which is some kind of record for one of their articles.

Please to enjoy…

Buzz Osborne of Melvins. The band plays The Waiting Room tonight. Photo by Mackie Osborne.

Buzz Osborne of Melvins. The band plays The Waiting Room tonight. Photo by Mackie Osborne.

What can I say about Melvins? The band whose sound influenced all things heavy — from grunge to stoner to alternative metal — has been playing their brand of grindingly hard rock for more than 30 years.

The list of bands influenced by Melvins is a Who’s Who of modern metal, from Mastodon to Sun O))) to Queens of the Stone Age, and, of course, Nirvana. In fact, the story goes that Melvins’ guitarist/vocalist/madman Buzz Osborne (a.k.a. King Buzzo) introduced Kurt Cobain and Krist Novoselic to Dave Grohl. It was Nirvana’s unexpected success that helped get Melvins signed to Atlantic Records, who released their masterpiece Houdini in 1993.

Now 23 years later, Melvins will release Basses Loaded June 3 on Ipecac. The record features six bass players including Steve McDonald of Redd Kross and OFF!, who will be playing alongside Buzzo and Dale Crover when Melvins play The Waiting Room Monday, April 25.

I asked Buzz Osborne to take our Ten Questions survey. Here’s his answers. Enjoy.

1. What is your favorite album?

Buzz Osborme: Bitches Brew by Miles Davis

2. What is your least favorite song?

“Happy Birthday”

3. What do you enjoy most about being in a band?

I’m in it for the chicks.

4. What do you hate about being in a band?

Not enough chicks.

5. What is your favorite substance (legal or illegal)?

Asbestos

6. What city or town do you love performing at?

Omaha, of course.

7. What city or town did you have your worst gig (and why)?

Maynardville, Tenn.

8. How do you pay your bills?

I sell drugs.

9. What one profession other than music would you like to attempt; what one profession would you absolutely hate to do?

Paid philosopher; testing drugs

10. What are the stories you’ve heard about Omaha, Nebraska?

I hear they have really good steakhouses and excellent topless bars.

Melvins plays with Napalm Death and Melt Banana Monday, April 25, at The Waiting Room, 6212 Maple St. Showtime is 8 p.m. Tickets are $20. For more information, visit onepercentproductions.com

* * *

Well, that Encounter Magazine profile of yours truly finally made it online, right here. Give it a read. Writer James Walmsley did a fantastic job summarizing my life in music journalism/criticism.

Also note, the photo that appears with the story is (probably) the only time my image has appeared on the internet, at least where I’m identified, though I’ve had people tell me they still can’t tell what I look like based on this photo. Kudos to Bill Sitzmann for not revealing too much. BTW, yes, I’m wearing a vintage Mercy Rule T-shirt in the shot.

* * *

Read Tim McMahan’s blog daily at Lazy-i.com — 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 © 2016 Tim McMahan. All rights reserved.

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10 questions with Walker Lukens; The Good Life to headline three Good Living tour stops; Buckethead tonight…

Category: Blog,Interviews — Tags: , , , — @ 12:40 pm April 19, 2016

Screen Shot 2016-04-19 at 12.29.25 PM
by Tim McMahan, Lazy-i.com

Yesterday, Hear Nebraska announced that The Good Life will be the headliner on the first three dates of this year’s Good Living Tour. Finally the fine folks in Kearney, Grand Island and — yes, frickin’ Ord, Nebraska — will get to experience Tim Kasher’s dangerous hip-sways up-close-and-personal.

Sayeth The Kasher: “Hear Nebraska has charmed us with the reminder that Nebraska is far greater than just Omaha and Lincoln; I’m ecstatic to cruise along those highways less taken to revisit towns and cities I haven’t been to in awhile.” Or ever, Tim. Let’s be honest. Well, maybe Ord.

Other big names on this year’s Good Living Tour include See Through Dresses, Twinsmith, Clarence Tilton, Mezcal Brothers, Conchance and perennial Dwight Yoakam opening act Matt Whipkey, who will give Grant, Nebraska, population 1,137, an experience it’ll never forget.

Full lineup and schedule is at goodlivingtour.com. The whole thing kicks off July 21 in Ord. Gas up and go.

The Good Living Tour has become Hear Nebraska’s marquee event, a true outreach program that brings the music we take for granted to locations that rarely get a chance to see and hear live ORIGINAL music. There’s a lot of good reasons behind the Good Living Tour; maybe the best is that these concerts could inspire folks to pick up an instrument and make some music of their own…

* * *

Walker Lukens plays The Slowdown April 20.

Walker Lukens plays The Slowdown April 20.

Austin’s Walker Lukens sings rock songs with a swagger, a swoon, a velvet edge that cuts through a retro-fueled funk like Frankie Valli with a shiv. His music struts, it sneers as Walker sings his stories about life and love in the big city.

On his one-sheet, they say he’s been compared to Nilsson (slightly off the mark), to Tom Waits (not sure why) and Pavement (a real head scratcher there). A closer comparison would be to Britt Daniel, which makes sense because lately Lukens has been working with Spoon’s Jim Eno, who (were told) is producing an upcoming Lukens album called Tell It to the Judge. No doubt you’ll be hearing song off that anticipated record when Lukens plays at The Slowdown Wednesday, April 20.

I threw down the Ten Questions gauntlet for Walker, and he crashed through it with great panache. Here’s what he had to say:

1.   What is your favorite album?

Walker Lukens: If Tusk and Bone Machine were mashed up that would be my favorite record.

2.   What is your least favorite song?

“Piano Man” rivaled closely by “American Pie.” Even when I’m in my car or at home, the opening notes of either song have me asking for the check.

3.   What do you enjoy most about being in a band?

Performing alone is like playing tennis against a wall. Who wants to watch someone play with themselves? Who can blame a singer for, after a while, letting the ball hit him in the head just to feel something different?

Playing with a group is like being on a rowing team. The song is the boat. The audience, the water. The band, the oarsmen. At best, I’m Washington standing at the bow in Scott Stapp pose, one foot on the monitor. Triumphant only by the grace of ye oarsmen. At worst, at least I don’t have to pretend to like tennis.

4.   What do you hate about being in a band?

I hate letting down my band. I hate group texting.

5.   What is your favorite substance (legal or illegal)?

I’m not gonna tell you how much I like molly unless you ensure that my mom can’t read this.

6. In what city or town do you love to perform?

Frankly, I like any town where more than 30 people come to the venue where I’m playing and stay through the set. City I like to play where the audiences are nonexistent? Memphis. City I like to play where the audiences are great but the city is subpar? Dallas. Awesome small town? Hot Springs, Ark.

7. What city or town did you have your worst gig (and why)?

I’ve played so many awful shows, you wouldn’t believe. Once, I brought a full band to play a coffee shop in Boone, New Hampshire, that in addition to not disclosing before arriving that they didn’t have a PA, didn’t want any music that required a PA. Once, I played at a venue in Mississippi so poorly grounded that I got shocked every time I sang. The only remedy in the given timeframe was putting the sound guy’s dirty sock onto the microphone.

8. How do you pay your bills?

I don’t walk out of gigs like the ones above. I teach. I fill excel spreadsheets full of data for hourly pay. I hang posters. I accept all free lunch offers.

9. What one profession other than music would you like to attempt; what one profession would you absolutely hate to do?

I would love to be a travel writer. I would hate to own a music venue.

10. What are the stories you’ve heard about Omaha, Nebraska?

All of my favorite bands from high school were from Omaha, so in a weird way I feel like I know lots of stories about Omaha. (Is Omaha on a Wednesday night going to feel like Wet From Birth?)

Walker Lukens plays with Enemy Plans (headliner) and Fontenelle, Wednesday, April 20, at Slowdown Jr., 729 No. 14th St. Showtime is 8 p.m. Tickets are $8 Adv/$10 DOS. For more information, visit theslowdown.com

* * *

If you’re like me you’ve probably been sitting around wondering to yourself, “Whatever happened to Buckethead?” Well, you can find out tonight when the guy with the bucket on his head returns to The Waiting Room. No opening act listed, just Buckethead all. night. long. Show starts at 8 p.m., $25.

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Read Tim McMahan’s blog daily at Lazy-i.com — 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 © 2016 Tim McMahan. All rights reserved.

 

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Ten Questions with Wolf Alice; Live review: Foxtails Brigade, Ryley Walker; Bent Shapes tonight…

Category: Blog,Interviews,Reviews — Tags: , , , , , — @ 12:50 pm April 11, 2016
Wolf Alice plays Tuesday, April 12, at The Waiting Room.

Wolf Alice plays Tuesday, April 12, at The Waiting Room.

by Tim McMahan, Lazy-i.com

There’s a good reason why UK band Wolf Alice so quickly exploded on the global music scene. Though they officially formed as a duo between frontwoman Ellie Rowsell and guitarist Joff Oddie in 2010, the band in its current form has only been around for a few years, releasing their debut full length, My Love Is Cool (Dirty Hit Records/Sony) last year.

That album not only was critically lauded (nominated for a Mercury Music Prize) but the band also netted a Grammy nomination. Their sleek, blaring rock has been compared to everyone from Hole to Elastica to The xx. They remind me of early Garbage crossed with one of those dreamy 4AD bands, with brazen,  grungy hooks balanced by Rowsell’s beautiful, breathy coo.  It won’t take them long to jump from rock-club sized venues like The Waiting Room (where they play Tuesday night) to arenas and headliner status on the festival circuit. Catch then now when you can still get close enough to touch them.

The band took the Ten Questions challenge. Here’s how guitarist/vocalist Joff Oddie responded (to most of the questions, anyway).

1. What is your favorite album?

Wolf Alice’s Joff Oddie: The velvet underground and Nico – the velvet underground

3. What do you enjoy most about being in a band?

Seeing people be brought together through our music is a really special thing. There are kids we know all over the world who are now friends and go to shows together through listening to Wolf Alice. That’s a special feeling when you see that.

4. What do you hate about being in a band?

Not being able to cook for myself whilst on long trips on the road. I really miss the kitchen. Sunday’s roasts..

5. What is your favorite substance (legal or illegal)?

Champagne. If you are coming to a show of ours then please bring champagne.

6. In what city or town do you love to perform?

Wherever there’s a good crowd we’ll have a good show. We love the states. Been making trips here for about 18 months now and we always love it. You guys know how to treat a band!

7. What city or town did you have your worst gig (and why)?

We had a nightmare show in London once at a small venue called The Lexington. It’s a great venue but all our shit just broke and we were standing on stage for about 20 minutes telling jokes while people tried to fix our shit. That was horrible.

8. How do you pay your bills?

With money…. ??

9. What one profession other than music would you like to attempt; what one profession would you absolutely hate to do? 

I trained to be a teacher before Wolf Alice so I’d like to do that. Or maybe a butcher.

I don’t think I’d last long in the military.

Wolf Alice plays with Slaves (UK), Tuesday, April 12, at The Waiting Room, 6212 Maple Street.. Showtime is 9 p.m. Tickets are $15 Adv./$17 DOS. For more information, visit onepercentproductions.com

* * *

I would suggest if you’re planning to see Wolf Alice tomorrow night, it might be a good idea to get your tickets now. Yeah, I know advance tickets cost about a dollar more than DOS (which is upside-down, but you know how ticket fees work), cuz I’ve got a feeling this could sell out like Saturday night’s Kurt Vile show. Just sayin’…

Speaking of the weekend.

Foxtails Brigade at The Sydney, April 9, 2016.

Foxtails Brigade at The Sydney, April 9, 2016.

Saturday night I was down the street from that Vile show watching Foxtails Brigade at The Sydney. The four-piece, anchored by Laura Weinbach on vocals, played two styles of rock. I preferred the more  straight-forward style that was reminiscent of early Suzanne Vega, thanks to the folk-rock fueled melodies and Weinbach’s flute-like vocals, which I would have loved to hear more of.

Countering this were prog-rock style songs with bracing time changes and melody shifts that sounded like improv jazz fused with jangle-pop. There were moments that had a sort of renaissance fare quality circa ’70s Jethro Tull. I was waiting for Anton Patzner to pick up the violin I saw him tuning prior to the set, but we didn’t stick around long enough to hear it.

Sunday afternoon I swung by Almost Music’s new location in the Blackstone District for the Ryley Walker in-store and noticed that they painted the building yet again. The striking yellow had been painted black, except for one charming yellow heart. I’m sure there’s a story behind the change.

The new Almost Music — and new Solid Jackson Books, which shares the building — is impressive, roomy and well organized, with gorgeous old-style floor tile, high ceilings and even more product than the old Benson store. The bookstore also is a big improvement over the old location, with high book cases and even more volumes to look through.

Ryley Walker at Almost Music, April 10, 2016.

Ryley Walker at Almost Music, April 10, 2016.

I got there too late to see opener Ian O’Neil from Deer Tick, but just in time to catch Walker, who was set up with a small PA in the bookstore-side of the building. His gorgeous, intricate guitar style perfectly suited his beautiful modern-day folk songs that left the crowd of 20 or so lost in the performance.

Almost Music last week announced the line-up of its annual Record Store Day music festival, which takes place all day next Saturday. Here it is:

12:00 – Nathaniel Hoier
1:00 – John Klemmensen and the Party
2:00 – Brad Hoshaw Music
3:00 – Bien Fang
4:00 – Hand Painted Police Car
5:00 – See Through Dresses
6:00 – Sucettes
7:00 – The Shrinks
8:00 – Ramon Speed

I suspect we’ll be hearing tons more about RSD in the coming days…

* * *

Seems like Milk Run has a show every night. I don’t know how Chris Aponick and Sam Parker do it. Tonight it’s Slumberland Records artist Bent Shapes. Their new album, Wolves of Want, netted a 6.8 on the ol’ Pitchfork meter in a review that called their music “inherently likeable.” Like all Milk Run shows there are three more performers on tonight’s bill: Atlanta’s Hello Ocho, Bed Rest and Little Ripple. $7, 9 p.m.

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Read Tim McMahan’s blog daily at Lazy-i.com — 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 © 2016 Tim McMahan. All rights reserved.

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