Reverb: Omaha’s Mid-Century live music lounge (in the column); and how many bars are in Benson, anyway?

Category: Blog,Interviews — Tags: , , — @ 1:01 pm October 2, 2014

by Tim McMahan, Lazy-i.com

A look inside the new Reverb Lounge as well as some Q&A with one of its owners, Jim Johnson, is the subject of my column this week. Jim talks about his vision for the club and why One Percent decided to open another bar literally feet away from two other bars they own. It’s in this week’s issue of The Reader and online right here.

As I say in the column, I foresee that I’ll be spending a lot of time at Reverb. As Omaha continues to get bigger and bigger, I’m spending more and more time in a smaller geographical location — i.e., Benson. Back in the old days, going to shows would mean driving to way south to Sokol, to downtown Omaha, out to The Asylum on West Center, and so on. These days most of my time is spent on Maple Street, with the occasional trek to O’Leaver’s. I haven’t been to The Slowdown in a few months (due to a combination of factors including 1) going to fewer mid-week shows, 2) Slowdown booking more private functions on weekends, along with 3) Slowdown booking fewer indie shows).

My coverage is definitely becoming too Benson focused, both in this blog and in my column. There is a world west of 72nd Street, though these days, I rarely step foot in it. And with clubs like Reverb opening, I’m less apt to.

So what’s the current bar count in Benson? Let’s see (not counting restaurants that serve booze): Jerry’s, Full House, Beercade, Krug Park, The Waiting Room, Burke’s, 1912, The Sydney, The Musette, St. Andrews, Benson Brewery, Infusion, Jake’s, The Barley Street and now Reverb. That’s 15 (and I’m probably missing something). That’s a lot of bars in about a half-mile stretch of road.

You have to ask yourself if there’s enough people to keep them all afloat.

BTW, news to me (though probably news to no one else), Jim told me that The Waiting Room is only open when an event or show is booked. Did not know that.

Some other comments that didn’t make it into the column:

— There will be tables and chairs added to Reverb’s concert space when appropriate. Jim is even considering adding row seating for some performances.

— There are no TVs in Reverb, nor video games or pinball.

— Jim said they’ll be adding some “sound treatment” to the concert room in the near future.

Again, you really need to check it out, whether there’s a show scheduled (check out their website to see) or not. And man, they make a potent mai tai.

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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 © 2014 Tim McMahan. All rights reserved.

Lazy-i

New Lungs, Little Gold, Saintseneca, Beach Fossils (in Lincoln) tonight…

Category: Blog — Tags: , , — @ 12:48 pm October 1, 2014
New Lungs play at O'Leaver's tonight...

New Lungs play at O’Leaver’s tonight…

by Tim McMahan, Lazy-i.com

Trying to think of some news to pass along… The new Prince records? Not feeling it. The new Thom Yorke? Nope. If you’re looking for something noisy and weird, you could do worse than checking out Useless Eaters LP Bleeding Moon (Castle Face). Modern, spiked garage rock. Or maybe not.

Busy Wednesday show-wise…

It’s a night of fine, fine rock at fabulous O’Leaver’s this evening. Been awhile since I’ve seen the crew from New Lungs. I believe D-Max and Co. have been working on some new stuff.  Opener Athens band Little Gold plays gritty, harmonica-infused indie rock. They kind of remind me of Centro-matic crossed with D. Jr., but only because of lead guy Christian DeRoeck’s gravel voice. Check out the tracks below. Swamp Walk kicks it off at 9:30. $5.

Tonight at Slowdown Jr. Columbus Ohio band Saintseneca headlines. The band recorded their latest album, Dark Arc (ANTI-) with Mike Mogis at ARC Studios, just up the street from the new Panda Express. It’s straight-up acoustic indie rock. Pretty. Bloomington’s Busman’s Holiday and our very own McCarthy Trenching open. $10, 9 p.m.

I typically don’t write about Lincoln shows because, well, they’re in Lincoln. And I’m in Omaha. And the chances of me driving to Lincoln during the week (or even on the weekend) are pretty slim. If I had chutzpah, I would make the drive tonight for Beach Fossils at Vega. This show is really a Captured Tracks showcase featuring label mates Heavenly Beat and Axxa/Abraxas. Captured Tracks has it going on. You should check it out. $17, 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 © 2014 Tim McMahan. All rights reserved.

Lazy-i

Live Review: Sebadoh and the debut of Reverb’s concert space…

Category: Blog,Reviews — Tags: , , , — @ 12:54 pm September 29, 2014
Sebadoh at Reverb Lounge, Sept. 28, 2014.

Sebadoh at Reverb Lounge, Sept. 28, 2014.

by Tim McMahan, Lazy-i.com

First off, there will be a full write-up about Reverb in this week’s column, a detailed look at the place and what it means in the larger picture of the Omaha music scene. That’s out Thursday. This is a review of last night’s kick-off show, and man, it was a bumpy ride.

The problems with the vocal PA seemed obvious during See Through Dresses’ opening set. Instrumentally, the band sounded great, you just couldn’t hear the vocals, they were dead or gone from the first note. Who to blame — was it something the band was doing wrong on stage or was it the sound guy? The vocals were simply buried in the mix and stayed that way.

Then came Sebadoh. Let’s not make more out of the incident than it was. By the second song, Lou Barlow was clearly irritated. “Can you hear me?” About a dozen hands went up with thumbs pointed at the ceiling, indicating more vocals. Barlow apologized, saying it was the first show for the club, that it “sounded like shit,” and mentioned something about giving the crowd its money back.

Then he left took off his guitar and left the stage. Jason Loewenstein, sporting a bass at this point in the set, looked up and said, “What did you guys say?” A few moments later, Barlow returned to a smattering of applause before kicking into their next song, which had virtually non-existent vocals. Then they went right into “On Fire” and things got noticeably better as two sound guys poured over the digital sound board trying to figure out what was wrong.

Next, Barlow’s amp broke. “I guess this room doesn’t like guitars.” Loewenstein came to the rescue with a spare guitar pedal and the show went on, and by the next song or two, the vocals gradually got better. By the end of the first Barlow-sung portion of the set, Lou could be heard fairly clearly, but the PA never had the necessary heft to really cut through the rest of the band’s equipment.

After Loewenstein’s set, Barlow apologized again. “Sorry I was so pouty earlier. I ran off stage to drink some wine and when I got back the sound was better.

I assume the band did a sound check earlier in the afternoon. If they had, they would have noticed the problem (It wasn’t one of those deals where “the crowd muffled the mix” — Reverb is way too small for that). Did something happen between sound check and the first set? Who knows.

A look at the crowd from the edge of the stage during See Through Dresses' set.

A look at the crowd from the edge of the stage during See Through Dresses’ set.

It was an inauspicious start for a new club with lots of promise. Located through the main lounge, entering the performance room is like walking into a sound stage, albeit a tiny sound stage. I couldn’t believe how small the room looked. It is, in essence, a gray box with a stage raised about four feet off the ground built into the wall. Maybe it was the high ceilings or the lack of tables and chairs, but the room seemed downright microscopic. The performance space is definitely bigger than The Barley Street’s or Sweatshop’s, but is it bigger than O’Leaver’s? I don’t know.

With its poured concrete floors, gray paint, no windows and exposed ceiling, the room is austere. The only decoration is a series of black-and-white concert photos that line the room at eye level, further accentuating the high ceiling. Then there’s the stage itself. Small, back-curtained with LED spotlight racks mounted on the ceiling in front of and behind the band. The only outcrop in the room is the sound board in the back directly facing the stage.

With all that concrete, featureless walls and high ceiling, I expected the sound to be brash and bouncy and was pleasantly surprised at how well directed it sounded. No doubt it was loud — bands aren’t going to need much to fill the space, which will help keep the sound down in the main lounge (where, no surprise, you could clearly hear the band during the set).

I’m no audio engineer, but the flaw seems to be the vocal PA. (From what I could see) the system has two smallish overhead arrays and a couple subs built under the stage. I didn’t have a chance to check out the stage monitors. As Barlow said himself a couple times from stage, hey, this is the first show. Give it time and this is going to be a great room.

The performance itself was solid. Barlow’s getting shaggy in his old age, with a big head of hair and a massive beard. His voice was as good as ever (when I could hear it). Loewenstein also was in fine form (especial on his personal anthem, “My Drugs”), despite suffering from a tooth ache (They’ll be looking for an oral surgeon today). Ouch.

One Percent said they sold 115 tickets and purposely kept the number at that level to make for a comfortable show, and comfortable it was. Moving around the room was easy, with plenty of space against the back wall and good sight lines throughout. I guess the room is bigger than I thought.

Having a second exit along the opposite side of the soundboard makes exiting easy. I’d like to see the room “warmed up” a bit aesthetically – it’s rather sterile and barren now. That said, it is indeed an intimate experience. It definitely felt like a private show. Someone said “I’d pay $200 to see Sonic Youth in this room.” Now wouldn’t that be killer?

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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 © 2014 Tim McMahan. All rights reserved.

Lazy-i

It’s True, Eros and the Eschaton tonight; Sebadoh, Literature, Dandy Warhols Sunday…

Category: Blog — Tags: , , — @ 12:51 pm September 26, 2014
Sebadoh plays at Reverb Sunday night.

Sebadoh plays at Reverb Sunday night.

by Tim McMahan, Lazy-i.com

Expect a mob scene tonight at The Barley Street Tavern for the Eros and the Eschaton show, which also features a solo version of It’s True — Adam Hawkins singing some of your favorites from year’s past. The Barley Street music room can get crowded simply when all the performing bands are in there at once, so yeah, it could get crowded. Best bet is to get there early for Gramps — the new-ish combo by Django Greenblatt-Seay of Love Drunk fame. Also on the bill is Charioteer. Four bands, $5, 9 p.m.

Also tonight, Buckhunter and M34n Str33t headline a night of electronic music at The Waiting Room that includes BOTH, Sharkweek, DFM, & Kethro. $8, 9 p.m.

Mitch Gettman and his band plays tonight at the Harney Street Tavern with Custom Catacombs. 9 p.m. and free.

Meanwhile, at fabulous O’Leaver’s, The Electroliners will headline a show tonight with Boone, NC band Hedleg Husky and Kate Berreckman. $5, 9 p.m.

BTW, tonight also is the grand opening of Reverb, the new club owned and operated by One Percent Productions located just north of Jake’s in balmy downtown Benson. No music is scheduled, but the bar will be open starting at 4 so you can get a look-see.

Tomorrow night Aaron Freeman, former lead singer of Ween, headlines at The Waiting Room with Arc Iris. $15, 9 p.m.

Over at the Barley Street Saturday night Travelling Mercies headlines with 24 Hour Cardlock, The Tinder Box and The Willards Band. $5, 9 p.m.

It all leads to Sunday night and the kick-off show at Reverb (TWR Jr.?) featuring Sebadoh. Opening is See Through Dresses. Tickets are still available for $20, 9 p.m.

Also Sunday night, Slumberland Records artist Literature headlines at Sweatshop Gallery with White Fang, Nathan Ma & the Rosettes and Eric In Outerspace. $7, 9 p.m.

Finally, our old friends The Dandy Warhols are headlining at The Waiting Room (TWR Sr.?) Sunday night with Bonfire Beach. $20, 9 p.m.

Did I forget your show? Put it in the comments section. Have a good weekend.

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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 © 2014 Tim McMahan. All rights reserved.

Lazy-i

Live Review: The War on Drugs; Mike Watt Vs. Ty Segall tonight…

Category: Blog,Reviews — Tags: , — @ 12:55 pm September 25, 2014
The War on Drugs at The Waiting Room, Sept. 24, 2014.

The War on Drugs at The Waiting Room, Sept. 24, 2014.

by Tim McMahan, Lazy-i.com

After catching the last couple songs by opener Califone (stunning) I wondered if I picked the wrong show. Surely Chvrches was going to be an audio/visual spectacle, a big-barn light show with plenty of compressed zings and a cooing frontwoman and lots and lots of young folks getting “into the groove.” Whereas The War on Drugs’ crowd was what I imaged it would be — a sausage party of music geeks like myself who know a good song when they hear it and want to see if the band can pull it off live.

That can mean a rather boring show — a handful of musicians on stage standing around playing their songs exactly as they sound on the record, with not much to see except hunched shoulders and contorted faces gripped in concentration, as opposed to Chvrches’ playground ride.

War on Drugs frontman Adam Granduciel.

War on Drugs frontman Adam Granduciel.

The band strolled on stage a little after 10, frontman Adam Granduciel looking like (as one social media comment put it), a young Ronnie James Dio with his shaggy, saggy long hair and denim jacket over T–shirt. Granduciel is the epitome of ’70s/’80s rock, from his appearance to his music, which despite modern flourishes really is a throwback to a time when people listened to songs for the melodies rather than the vibe.

TWOD’s appeal comes from its soaring guitar lines (reminiscent of ’80s New Wave pop), unobtrusive keyboard lines, Granduciel’s nasal Dylan-styled vocals and (most importantly) Charlie Hall’s straight-forward rock-n-roll drumming so rife with backbeat, so obvious that you can’t help but nod your head to it. Hall’s style is so crisp you could mistake it for a drum machine, keeping the most amorphous songs pumping away. In fact, half the tunes began with long, winding guitar drones or keyboards that laid flat until Hall kicked them into gear.

I tapped down a note during one particularly long high-throttle session, where the guitars were doing some back-and-forth after the melody was over: “Allman Brothers meets Dire Straits.” TWOD sounds like neither of course, instead capturing the spirit of both bands thanks to the guitar interplay and the rhythm section. At other times I was reminded of Jim James and My Morning Jacket. Then there’s the whole Dylan thing.

Throughout the set Granduciel teased that he was going to play his cover of “Tangled Up in Blue” at some point in the evening. “I’m going to try it without the lyric sheet tonight,” he grinned. But after an hour it was obvious he wasn’t going to play the Dylan chestnut until either very late in the set or during an encore. And believe it or not, some of us had to work the next morning.

So. On and on. You reach a point where you say to yourself, “I got it. These guys aren’t going to do anything different than what I’ve seen and heard for the past hour. I’ve heard my favorite songs. Why am I still here?

I waited through two more soaring numbers (including a chomping version of “Red Eyes”) before I gave up the ghost. About 15 minutes after I got home someone posted on Facebook “Tangled Up in Blue!” Well. It’s not as if that was the reason I bought a ticket to the show in the first place.

The War on Drugs is a band destined to do more than the tiny little indie-rock world can provide. They have a style and sound destined for arenas, if Granduciel can write a breakthrough record. No doubt Lost in the Dream was a breakthrough from an indie point of view, but he’ll need something bigger to get to the next level, something the crowd can sing along to. Or he could get caught in the endless indie morpheus loop, putting out record after record after record, each one well respected, forever nurturing a small-but-strong following. Or they could become this generation’s Counting Crows. I don’t know which fate is worse. Here’s hoping they become this generation’s Arcade Fire, growing to arena proportions, taking a different path every time out.

* * *

Ty Segall’s new record, Manipulator, is a slick garage rock album with the usual psychedelic sheen, great guitars and an abundance of simple songs. This is Segall’s most pop-friendly set to date. Could he be the next Jack White (Well, I certainly like Segall’s music more).

Live, Segall brings a wall-of-sound approach to his rock concerts and I have no doubt he’ll do it again tonight at The Waiting Room. In addition to mighty guitar licks, expect a selection from the new album along with some back catalog faves. In addition, Segall has been known to pull out a handful of covers during a set. At his Chicago show Tuesday night he tossed in three Bowie songs (including “Queen Bitch”), according to setlist.fm. $15, 9 p.m.

Mike Watt’s latest effort, Il Sogno Del Marinaio, is another in a series of experimental projects by the Minutemen bassist that leans closer to improvisational jazz and beat poetry than rock. Still, the man is legend. At Slowdown Jr., $13, 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 © 2014 Tim McMahan. All rights reserved.

Lazy-i

Chvrches Vs. The War on Drugs (SOLD OUT), Synaesthesia, Vibrators tonight; Reverb opens Friday…

Category: Blog — Tags: , , , — @ 12:52 pm September 24, 2014
The War on Drugs plays tonight at The Waiting Room...

The War on Drugs plays tonight at The Waiting Room…

by Tim McMahan, Lazy-i.com

The indie music cage match we’ve all been waiting for finally goes down tonight. I intend to be at The Waiting Room for The War on Drugs, mainly because I like their records more than Chvrches’ records, but also because it’s close by, it’s cheaper and I like the opening act, Califone, more than The Range. That said, there will be more people at Sokol Auditorium tonight for Chvrches. You can’t go wrong with either show.

The detes: The War On Drugs is $15, starts at 9 at The Waiting Room; Chvrches is $20, starts at 8 p.m. at Sokol Auditorium. As of this posting, tickets are still available for Chvrches, but War on Drugs is SOLD OUT.

There are other shows happening tonight if you’re not digging the indie choices.

Mason Brown, whose work includes stints with Tilly and the Wall, Coyote Bones, Icky Blossoms and Jet by Day, will be performing tonight as part of a project called Color-Tone Drone. Brown says it’s “a guitar orchestra conducted by colors. I’ve done a couple here in Atlanta. This particular performance will feature 16 guitarists from various local Omaha bands.” The performance is called Synaesthesia. Opening is Omaha legend Dereck Higgins and TBD Dance Collective. $5, 9 p.m.

Here’s the trailer for the Atlanta version of the show that took place earlier this summer. Looks like a head trip:

More details here and here.

Also tonight, UK punk legends The Vibrators try to tear apart The Brothers Lounge. I think drummer John “Eddie” Edwards is the only original member. Regardless, should be a fun show, with Hand Painted Police Car opening. $7, 9 p.m.

* * *

One Percent Productions announced this morning that their new club, Reverb, will open at 4 p.m. this Friday.  The new club is just north of Jake’s at 6121 Military Ave., and will have its official break-in show this coming Sunday featuring Sebadoh, which (surprisingly) is still not sold out.

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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 © 2014 Tim McMahan. All rights reserved.

Lazy-i

Perfect-storm week of rock shows, starting with Pinback tonight…

Category: Blog — Tags: — @ 1:03 pm September 22, 2014
Pinback plays at The Waiting Room tonight...

Pinback plays at The Waiting Room tonight…

by Tim McMahan, Lazy-i.com

This past weekend? Don’t ask. Let’s just say it involved a couple white pills and something akin to an exorcism, but that I can finally say I’m on the road to recovery. When the doctor asks you, just take the pills.

Anyway,  this summer has led up to one of the strongest weeks of touring indie rock shows in recent memory — a show — or two — every night the week…

Starting with Pinback tonight at The Waiting Room. The San Diego band has been on the forefront of post-modern indie since its 1999 debut through the mid-2000s at Touch & Go and today at Temporary Residence. Opening is Tera Melos. $15, 9 p.m.

We might as well go through the rest of the week.

Tomorrow night it’s Glass Animals at The Slowdown with Rome Fortune. $15, 8 p.m.

Wednesday night it’s the indie music death match that’s been brewing for months: Chvches Vs. The War on Drugs.

Chvrches would appear to have an advantage, playing at Sokol Underground with The Range. $20, 8 p.m.

But my money is on The War on Drugs at The Waiting Room with the amazing Califone. $15, 9 p.m.

And let’s not forget The Vibrators at The Brothers Lounge Wednesday night. With Hand Painted Police Car, $7, 9 p.m.

It’s another head-to-head match-up Thursday: Mike Watt Vs. Ty Segall.

Watt performs as Il Songo de Marinaio at The Slowdown. $13, 9 p.m.

Meanwhile Ty Segall headlines at The Waiting Room Thursday night with La Luz. $13 now, $15, DOS. 9 p.m.

Finally, it’s the return of It’s True to The Barley Street Tavern on Friday. Yes, that It’s True. Also on the bill Eros and the Eschaton and Gramps (Django G-S’s band). $5, 9 p.m.

The capper, of course, is the grand opening of One Percent Production’s new bar, Reverb, Sunday with a performance by the legendary Sebadoh. Opening is See Through Dresses. Believe it or not, $20 tickets are still available for this gala event.

What a week.

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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 © 2014 Tim McMahan. All rights reserved.

 

Lazy-i

Octoberfests take over September; Filter Kings (farewell show) Saturday; Worried Mothers Sunday…

Category: Blog — Tags: , — @ 1:11 pm September 19, 2014
Drink, drink, drink...

Drink, drink, drink…

by Tim McMahan, Lazy-i.com

I generally don’t go to events whose sole entertainment value centers around the drinking of beer. Well, except for St. Patrick’s Day, and of course for two Octoberfest celebrations happening this weekend.

Tonight, mere footsteps from my front door, is the Benson Community Garden Octoberfest, located right at the garden spot at 1302 N. 60th St. The event promises “Fresh Food, Local Beer, Live Music & Great People” and yeah, bands will play. It’s 5 to 11 p.m. and costs $5. More info here.

The other Octoberfest is Saturday night at fabulous O’Leaver’s and includes a volleyball tournament and polka (details here). Of great(er) interest is the after party, featuring performances by Reptar, Twinsmith and See Through Dresses. $5, 9:30 p.m.

Also Saturday night, The Waiting Room is hosting a fundraiser in honor of Alexis Stansbury. Performers include Snake Island!, John Klemmensen and the Party, Pyrate and The Filter Kings, who have said this will be their last show, maybe forever. Send Gerald Lee and Co. off in style and help a good cause at the same time. $10, 8 p.m.

They’ll still be picking the vomit out of the sand Sunday when Worried Mothers headlines a show at O’Leaver’s with Lvrk Late and  Minneapolis band The Funeral and the Twilight. $5, 9:30 p.m.

If I missed your show, put it in the comments area. Have a good weekend (glug-glug).

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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 © 2014 Tim McMahan. All rights reserved.

Lazy-i

Bedhead gets the box set treatment (Stranglers cover); new track from Exit Verse (Geoff Farina of Karate)…

Category: Blog — Tags: , , , — @ 1:26 pm September 18, 2014
The austerely designed Bedhead set. The band's artwork was always appropriately minimal, I guess to match their rather stripped-down sound.

The austerely designed Bedhead set. The band’s artwork was always appropriately minimal, I guess to match their rather stripped-down sound.

by Tim McMahan, Lazy-i.com

Here’s one appropriate for Throwback Thursday…

Record label Numero Group is releasing Bedhead – The Retrospective Box Set, described as “the complete studio recordings of Dallas, Texas, slow-core pioneers” reissued on vinyl, both as stand-alone albums, and as part of a gorgeous box set.

Bedhead were always one of my favorite bands, emerging as a so-called “slow-core” savior after the sunset of Galaxie 500, a band who they initially most closely resembled (along with VU). They grew past that, adding some of the same driving/building dialogue that fueled bands like The Feelies oh so many years before.

On their best tracks, Bedhead music has the same cathartic feeling as traveling through a cave for hours before finally breaking through to daylight; or running alone in the back of a marathon, covered with sweat and fear and uncertainty, on the verge of collapse, only to fall into the outstretched arms of a loved one after crossing the finish line. I’ve heard it described as “build music” i.e. music that starts quiet and builds to a ferocious climax. Had I ever formed a band, it probably would have sounded like Bedhead.

The box set includes their debut WhatFunLifeWas, 1996’s Beheaded and their finale, ’98’s Transaction De Novo. I already own all three, but on CD (though I own one Bedhead EP on vinyl). The honey pot in the box is an additional two vinyl LPs (one disc) worth of rarities that include all the singles, EPs and outtakes.

Outtakes like the band’s cover of The Stranglers’ “Golden Brown,” which they recorded but never released. According to the notes, the band “had the idea to record it with drummer Trini Martinez’s uncle, Trini Lopez, singing the classic drug-tinged song. As distance and circumstances led to those plans fizzling (people used to have to be in the same room as the master tape to record a part, kids!), the band ultimately decided to record the vocal track themselves, life moved on, and this amazing cover got lost to the winds of time.”

Here it is now:

After Bedhead broke up in ’98, the Kadane brothers, who made up the core of the band, went on to form The New Year, which continued in the same vein. The brothers’ latest project, Overseas, also involves David Bazan and Will Johnson of Centro-matic..

Anyway, the Bedhead box set comes out Nov. 18. Check out the trailer below.

Another blast from the past that made news this week is Geoff Farina, formerly of seminal band Karate. He’s resurfaced as the frontman in Exit Verse, a band with fellow Chicago thoroughbreds, drummer John Dugan (Chisel, Edsel), and bassist Pete Croke (Brokeback, Tight Phantoms). Check out the band’s first single from their upcoming (Nov 17) debut on Earnest Jenning Records, “Seeds”:

A little trivia to pull these two items together: Bedhead follow-up band The New Year included drummer Chris Brokaw (of Codeine and Come), and after the break-up of Karate in 2005, Farina went on to record two albums with Brokaw in 2010.

* * *

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 © 2014 Tim McMahan. All rights reserved.

Lazy-i

Was there a Conflict of Interest in the OEAA nomination process?

Category: Blog — Tags: , , , , — @ 1:06 pm September 17, 2014

by Tim McMahan, Lazy-i.com

OEAAs...

OEAAs…

Yesterday’s post outlining the nomination process for the Omaha Entertainment and Arts Awards (OEAAs) resulted in a number of people suggesting there was a conflict of interest since Board President Emily Engles works for a number of bands nominated in various categories. As OEAA Board President and facilitator of the nomination process, was Engles in a position to influence the final list of nominees?

To help clarify the issue, I asked Engles, via email. Here’s what she said:

Me: Which OEAA-nominated bands and performers do you work for?   

Engles: The Decatures – booking/promo; Stonebelly – booking; Mitch Gettman – booking/promo (this partnership started Sept 3); The Willards Band – booking/promo.

Me: What do you do for those bands/performers, and do they pay you?

Engles: Yes, these bands pay me a monthly fee. E3 Music Management is registered with the State of Nebraska..I have also done some “freelance” work for Hector Anchondo and Matt Cox…referrals and connecting them with the right people, mostly.

Me: How were you involved in the nomination process, specifically in categories where bands you work for were nominated?

Engles: As OEAA President and a member of the music committee within the board, I serve as facilitator. I make sure each committee (Performing Arts, Visual Arts and Music) have the list of nominees, meet deadlines, gather contact information, etc. A music review committee of board members and music voting academy members gathered to go over the full list of nominees (like I said in an online comment, we look at the entire list down to those with only one vote, not just the top six). We make sure the artists are in the correct category (many fans put a band in both rock and hard rock or both country and Americana, not knowing where they may fall) and look at the entire list for who may be moved up once those bands that should not be in a category are removed.

In regard to the categories where bands I work for were nominated, I remove myself from the discussion about who should be moved up once the incorrect bands are removed. I allow the other four members to make the final decision…I do not push or make the final call as I might in other categories.

Engles suggested I reach out John Heaston for a formal statement from the OEAAs in regard to the organization’s conflict of interest policy. “We have board members who are also in the arts and may be nominated,” Engles said. “We have voting academy members who may also be nominated…it is requested they remove themselves from actively participating in such categories, just as I did in regard to the bands I work for.

“The bands I work for are nominated because they are talented and work hard to make an impact on the Omaha music scene,” she wrote. “I work hard for them and they work hard for me.”

To clarify further, Engles pointed me to the nomination statement from the OEAA website, which you can read here.

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A final thought…

When you turn art into a competition, you are saying one work of art is better than another work of art. Conversely, you’re saying something isn’t as good as something else. All art is subjective. I might think Bob Dylan’s voice is mercurial; you might think it sucks. The truth is in the eye — or ear — of the beholder.

I can make you a top-20 list of my favorite Nebraska bands. You can agree or disagree with as much of it as you want, understanding at the end of the day it’s just one man’s opinion.

And when you create a non-profit organization that’s designed to recognize the brightest local talent through an awards program, there’s going to be people who disagree with your choices.

However, when the area’s best-selling local albums by the three local performers who draw the largest local crowds are not nominated for the Album of the Year, Singer/Songwriter of the Year or Artist of the Year, people are going to ask questions.

I asked the questions yesterday. The answer was very clear. All three artists were considered during the nomination process, and Conor Oberst, The Faint and Orenda Fink simply didn’t make the cut. The nominating committee felt they’re not as good as those nominated for Best Singer/Songwriter; their records were not as good as those nominated for Album of the Year, and as artists and musicians, they simply didn’t do as much musically as the people who were nominated for Artist of the Year. The OEAA nominating committee has spoken.

Do you agree with them?

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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 © 2014 Tim McMahan. All rights reserved.

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