Live Review: Orenda Fink, Domestica; Kasher track part of Polyvinyl singles club; Cully joins Beach Slang…

Category: Blog,Reviews — Tags: , , , , , , — @ 1:50 pm December 13, 2016
Orenda Fink at The Waiting Room, Dec. 9, 2016.

Orenda Fink at The Waiting Room, Dec. 9, 2016.

by Tim McMahan, Lazy-i.com

Nice crowd at last Friday night’s Mobilize Omaha event at The Waiting Room. Booths were set up throughout the club where local non-profit agencies told their stories and asked for volunteers. These are strange times we live in; uncertain times. No doubt non-profits will play a more important role if (or, more likely, when) the government turns its back on those in need.

Orenda Fink, who was the night’s final scheduled performer, talked about how important Planned Parenthood is not only for reproductive health services, but also as a provider of basic women’s health services. The agency is constantly under attack; and those attacks will only increase as our country turns a darker shade of red in the coming weeks. If you have the cash, by all means, give what you can to Planned Parenthood, who will likely see its funding cut-off as the new administration takes over the White House. Strange, sad times indeed.

It’s easy to forget that Orenda, who’s involved in a number of projects (High Up (who you can see Thursday night at Slowdown Jr.) and Closeness (with Todd Fink) immediately come to mind) is a one of the city’s hallmark solo performers. She proved that again Friday. Standing alone on stage with her electric guitar Orenda belted out a set of that included early solo material, Azure Ray songs, and a few covers including tunes by Harry Nilsson (“Everybody’s Talkin'”) and David Bowie (an aching version of “Lazarus”).

Domestica at The Waiting Room, Dec. 9, 2016.

Domestica at The Waiting Room, Dec. 9, 2016.

Like I said, Orenda was the last scheduled performer, to be followed by a “special guest.” Turns out that special guest was Lincoln power-punk trio Domestica. Heidi, Jon and Pawl took their places and proceeded to blow the crowd away.

Unfortunately, unaware that they would cap off an evening of mostly somber indie/folk music, my other half didn’t bring earplugs (whereas I never leave home without them). She pulled the hood of her winter coat over her head in a vain effort to block the thunderous power of Doemstica in full flight, but to avail, and we ended up leaving after their first anthem. Next time, Heidi and Co…

* * *

These updates at Lazy-i may be a bit unpredictable for the next few weeks as I slog through a busy holiday season, which also happens to be a frantic year-end time at work. I’ll post whenever there’s a crack of light in my schedule.

A couple news bits:

Polyvinyl Records is launching another “Singles” series, wherein subscribers can receive a year’s worth of 7-inches mailed directly to their doors by the likes of Beach Slang, Japanese Breakfast, Modern Baseball, Twin Peaks, Joyce Manor, Jay Som, Diet Cig, Mothers, Owen, Ra Ra Riot, Sonny & The Sunsets and Saddle Creek Records artist Tim Kasher of Cursive and The Good Life fame.

All the singles were recorded on a 4-track Tascam cassette recorder to capture that classic, made-in-the-bedroom feeling. Subscribe here at the Polyvinyl site for a mere $120. You get some nice chochkes with your purchase.

BTW, I’ve been asking Saddle Creek to try doing one of these “singles-of-the-month” deals for years. I’d be the first in line. Come on, guys.

Speaking of Kasher and Cursive, Cully Symington, former Cursive drummer, has joined Beach Slang, according to SPIN. Cully has pulled drumming duties for a variety of bands including Afghan Whigs and Okkervil River.

Sounds like Beach Slang has been through the ringer this year, according to the SPIN article.

So who’s playing drums with Cursive when they inevitably get back together for another album? My vote is for Clint Schnase…

* * *

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: Giant’s Arrow, Wagon Blasters, Domestica; VMAs; White Mystery, The Blind Shake tonight…

Category: Blog,Reviews — Tags: , , , , , — @ 12:59 pm August 31, 2015
Giant's Arrow at O'Leaver's Aug. 29, 2015.

Giant’s Arrow at O’Leaver’s Aug. 29, 2015.

by Tim McMahan, Lazy-i.com

Fun night of music at O’Leaver’s this past Saturday.

The consensus (even voiced from stage) was that Lincoln band Giant’s Arrow carries on the tradition of mid-’90s emo bands like Boys Life and Caulfield bands like Christie Front Drive. Their style is angular indie bordering on prog, soaring, complicated rhythms, and scream/yell vocals that lack a central melody, with ferocious guitar licks that are jittery and spastic. There also were moments of melodic lucidity. I jotted down At the Drive-in and early Husker Du. At times they reminded me of local boys The Stay Awake or even Fromanhole, though without the those bands’ precision.

The performance brought on a discussion (again) of what “emo” means and how the term evolved from its original label used to describe Rites of Spring-style punk bands. Giant’s Arrow’s sound is one-generation removed, to the pleading/angular style of emo that would later evolve into the poppier punk style of Promise Ring. At least that’s my take on it.

That said, I liked them. The four piece flailed around stage so much I thought they were going to slam their guitars into each other. Lots of kicking and jumping and wagging of heads in time with the music’s energy. They don’t play songs as much as proggy rock constructions.

Wagon Blasters at O'Leaver's, Aug. 29, 2015.

Wagon Blasters at O’Leaver’s, Aug. 29, 2015.

It’s a distinction that separates Giant’s Arrow from the other bands on the bill Saturday night. Wagon Blasters and Domestica write and perform rock songs. Gary Dean Davis may not “sing,” but there’s no denying the musicality of a Wagon Blasters’ tune. Tractor punk indeed. There is not now, nor has there ever been a band that does what Gary Dean Davis bands do.

Domestica at O'Leaver's, Aug. 29, 2015.

Domestica at O’Leaver’s, Aug. 29, 2015.

The same can be said about Domestica. Heidi, Jon and Pawl create punk anthems about everyday life that feel like rooting for the home team. Taylor’s guitar work remains somehow both raw and pristine, brutal riffs hone to a razor’s edge.

The whole evening felt like it could have taken place sometime in 1995. But then again, isn’t all great rock music timeless?

BTW, O’Leaver’s improved its sound system again. Sound engineer Ian Aeillo said they upped the wattage so the sound is cleaner not so much louder. I don’t know how much more that room can take. They’ve also added a booth in the back so that Ian or whoever is running sound can now look down over you as he twiddles dem knobs… as it should be.

* * *

I watched the VMAs last night. What? What’s wrong with that? Alright, it does sound a bit creepy that a guy my age would watch a program clearly targeted toward teen-aged girls, but hey, as a music critic, you have to keep up with the trends.

There was a time — a loooong time ago — when MTV broadcast culturally cutting-edge content. That time has long passed. Last night’s VMAs showcased R&B, hip-hop and pop music. Notice I didn’t mention rock? That’s because today’s pop music has nothing to do with rock music, which is one of the distinctions about the VMAs of today and the VMAs from 25 or so years ago. Rock music used to have a place in popular music culture. That’s really no longer the case. Rock ‘n’ roll isn’t dead, just sort of hiding in plain sight…

* * *

Speaking of rock music, there’s a big rock show going on tonight at fabulous O’Leaver’s.

White Mystery is playing a set as well as screening their new film That Was Awesome. Opening is The Blind Shake and a DJ set from the uber talented Dave Goldberg. $5, 9:30 p.m. What a way to kick off your week!

* * *

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 © 2015 Tim McMahan. All rights reserved.

Lazy-i

Domestica celebrates Domestica 3 in Lincoln, Bloodcow tonight; Millions of Boys, FITNESS Saturday; Big Harp Sunday…

Category: Blog — Tags: , , , — @ 10:46 am June 19, 2015
Domestica at The Sydney, Dec. 3, 2011.

Domestica at The Sydney, Dec. 3, 2011. The band celebrates the release of their new EP, Domestica 3, tonight at Plowshare Brewing Co. in Lincoln.

by Tim McMahan, Lazy-i.com

Esteemed Lincoln critic L. Kent Wolgamott weighs in on the new EP by Domestica — titled Domestica 3 — in Ground Zero, giving it a solid “A” rating and saying the EP is “a recording on which Domestica takes an impressive step forward while rocking as hard as ever.” Read the entire review here.

Little more can I add except a brief history lesson. Before Domestica there was Mercy Rule, a band I fell in love with way back in 1993 with the release of God Protects Fools by local label Caulfield Records. Relativity put out Providence in 1994 and the band was back on Caulfield for the seminal album, Flat Black Chronicles, in 1998. The story behind that record is documented at Lazy-i right here and continues to stand as a lesson for bands even in these days of digital streaming (because despite the technology, crappy record labels continue to exist).

Some might say Domestica is merely Mercy Rule with a different drummer — Pawl Tisdale (Sideshow) replacing Ron Albertson. Certainly the power and the fury are the same. But some would be wrong, because Domestica — both lyrically and musically — feels more thought-out, more mature, more realized. The songs still have a huge, anthemic quality, but the arrangements are tighter, the riffs grittier and the entire package is more compact and streamlined.

Domestica, Domestica 3 (Tremulant, 2015)

Domestica, Domestica 3 (Tremulant, 2015)

Opening track “What of Me” is the EP’s high water mark, with co-front-person Heidi Ore at her howlin’ best, breaking your heart when the song drops and she sings “What of me / said the sorrow / said the anger / and the pain” before blowing the whole goddamn thing up all over again. It’s frickin’ fantastic, but I wonder where a song like this fits into today’s music world, where weirdo psychedelia is the norm. What will the kids think of this track, of this album?

In the context of modern rock, Domestica is as relevant as any other ’90s act such as Superchunk or even Desaparecidos, which is experiencing a bit of a resurgence with their new album, which comes out next Tuesday. If ’90s indie punk is indeed coming back in style, Domestica could stand at the forefront of the revival.

The other big news with Domestica 3 (which L Kent led with) is the addition of Jon Taylor on vocals. Jon sings leads on half the songs, including the blazing “More” and the clap-powered album closer “Got It Right.” He surprises with a strong, slightly nasal voice that reminded me of John Linnell of They Might be Giants. Heidi completes the overall picture with her sharp, soaring harmonies. Massive indeed.

Released by Tremulant Records, you can find Domestica 3 at CD Baby (here) and of course on iTunes and Amazon.com (here) for a mere $5.94. You can also find it at tonight’s album release show, being held among the fermenting tanks at Ploughshare Brewing Co., 1630 P Street in Lincoln. Opening is Dirty Talker (members of Her Flyaway Manner). Show starts at 8 and is absolutely free. More info here.

Meanwhile, back here in Omaha, Bloodcow headlines a show at fabulous O’Leaver’s with American Wasted and Mint Wad Wally. No, this is not the album release show for Bloodcow’s Crystals & Lasers. That doesn’t happen until mid-July. Still, you’ll probably hear plenty from the new album tonight. $5, 9:30 p.m.

Saturday night Millions of Boys headlines a show at Sweatshop Gallery with Manic Pixie Dream Girls, Lincoln’s Once a Pawn and Big Slur. $7, 9 p.m.

Also Saturday night, FITNESS #000008 comes to The Brothers Lounge. Featured bands are Ruby Block, Forest Television, Chalant and Grottos. $5, 9:30 p.m.

Sunday it’s back to O’Leaver’s for the return of Big Harp. Opening is Ted Stevens Unknown Project (although the show listing says “maybe”).  $5, 9:30 p.m.

That’s what I got. If I missed your show, put it in the comments section. Have a great weekend.

* * *

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 © 2015 Tim McMahan. All rights reserved.

Lazy-i

Domestica, Drakes Hotel, Little Brazil, Brad Hoshaw, BFF tonight; Millions of Boys Saturday…

Category: Blog — Tags: , , , — @ 12:50 pm October 3, 2014
Little Brazil at The Waiting Room, July 19, 2014. The band is playing for free tonight at The Sydney.

Little Brazil at The Waiting Room, July 19, 2014. The band is playing for free tonight at The Sydney.

by Tim McMahan, Lazy-i.com

Lots of (cheap) local shows this weekend, especially tonight.

Tonight at fabulous O’Leaver’s Lincoln punk legends Domestica are on a showbill headlined by (ex-Filter King) Gerald Lee’s sludge/stoner band Nightbird. Opening is Lincoln’s Once a Pawn. $5, 9:30 p.m.

Back in Benson at The Sydney Little Brazil headlines a free show with The Brigadiers and Well Aimed Arrows (who, I’m told, has wrapped up recording a new album). The fun starts at 9.

Over at The Barley Street, local post-punk band Drakes Hotel is on a bill that includes The Bishops, The Toppings and Brief Candles. If the website listing is correct, Drakes plays first. $5, 9 p.m.

Finally, Brad Hoshaw and Low Long Signal open for the debut of Foreign Body at Benson’s newest lounge/concert space Reverb (read all about the bar here). $5, 9 p.m.

And remember, tonight is Benson First Friday. Get your parking where you can.

Let’s not forget that Relax, It’s Science headlines at Slowdown Jr. tonight with Nanahara and Timecat. $5, 9 p.m.

I keep forgetting that it’s football season and Husker games pretty much drive rock shows off the calendar on Saturdays. That said, there’s at least one show going on tomorrow night, and it’s at Reverb. Millions of Boys headlines with Dan Mariska and the Boys Choir and The Crash Bandits. $7, 9 p.m.

That’s what I got. If I missed your show, put it in the comments section. Have a good weekend.

* * *

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

Maha Festival adds Icky Blossoms, Domestica; Laura Burhenn returns for Omaha Gives!; NPR streams Conor; Envy Corps tonight…

Category: Blog — Tags: , , , , — @ 1:00 pm May 12, 2014
Icky Blossoms playing a rainsoaked Maha Music Festival in 2012.

Icky Blossoms playing a rain-soaked Maha Music Festival in 2012.

by Tim McMahan, Lazy-i.com

Yesterday between tornadoes the fine folks at the Maha Music Festival announced the last two acts for their Aug. 26 concert:  Icky Blossoms and Domestica.

It’s a return engagement for Icky, who played the rain-laden Maha Music Festival in 2012. I think this will represent the first time an act has played the festival twice (Wrong. Turns out It’s True! and Mynabirds both have played Maha twice, and this will be the second year also for Envy Corp.).

Domestica is a Nebraska original, and a Nebraska legend. Two core members, Heidi Ore and Jon Taylor (wife and husband) were the duo behind one of the best bands to ever come out of Lincoln — Mercy Rule — more than two decades ago.

With yesterday’s announcement, Maha’s 2014 line-up is now complete: Death Cab for Cutie, The Head and the Heart, Local Natives, The Both (featuring Aimee Mann and Ted Leo), Doomtree, The Envy Corps, Radkey, Twinsmith, Matt Whipkey, M34n Str33t, Icky Blossoms and Domestica. That’s 12 bands for $50. Such a deal…

* * *

Speaking of Maha, the non-profit joins a handful of other non-profits including Hear Nebraska, Opera Omaha and Omaha Girls Rock! for a special fund-raising concert at The Slowdown May 21 held in conjunction with Omaha Gives! Featured acts include Saddle Creek band Twinsmith and Mynabirds’ frontwoman Laura Burhenn, in town from her new home in Los Angeles. It should be a crazy way to close out what is sure to be a crazy day… of fundrasing. Details here.

* * *

NPR First Listen is streaming Conor Oberst’s new album, Upside Down Mountain, it its entirety. The record comes out May 19 on Nonesuch. You can listen right here.

* * *

Maha and 850/35 Festival band Envy Corp is headlining a show tonight at The Waiting Room. The full lineup includes Moon Honey, Soft Touches, and what I’m told is the final performance of Masses. It’ll be historic. $8, 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: Speed! Nebraska showcase; Make Believe to launch (local) record store…

Category: Blog,Reviews — Tags: , , , , — @ 12:53 pm July 15, 2013
Domestica at O'Leaver's, July 13, 2013.

Domestica at O’Leaver’s, July 13, 2013.

by Tim McMahan, Lazy-i.com

If you’re even passibly interested in post-punk, especially bands with a ’90s Homestead-style flair, you’ve got to check out Domestica. The band’s history is legend. Born out of the ashes of classic Nebraska band Mercy Rule, Domestica is a power-punk trio whose forte is guitar-driven buzz-saw rock songs about living and loving in the great, dusty Midwest. At the trio’s core is Capital-city-based husband/wife combo of bassist/vocalist Heidi Ore and guitarist Jon Taylor — the First Family of Nebraska punk.

Domestica has been around for a while, taking a brief hiatus when Mercy Rule returned for a short time a few years ago. The band’s last recording was the digital-only Domestica 2, released last year. Based on what I heard Saturday night at O’Leaver’s, it’s time for them to get back into the studio. Now with former Sideshow drummer P. Tisdale (I don’t know if he spells it Paul or Pawl, I’ve seen it both ways) they’re playing on a whole new level.

I’ve heard Heidi sing at least a couple dozen times over the decade, and she’s never sounded better than Saturday night. Part of the reason is, believe it or not, O’Leaver’s new PA, which does a good job with separation. I usually can’t hear Heidi because she’s buried beneath Jon’s guitar. This time she gave Jon a run for his money. In fact, I would have preferred Jon turn it up a bit more. He tweaked it about halfway through the set (but I could have used even more).

The set’s final song was (I believe) a new one. The band rarely leans back on riffs, preferring to keep with a short-shock chorus/verse format. On this one they repeated the guitar/bass lines in a way I can’t quite remember hearing before. I’d love to see them take off on a riff and repeat it over and over and over. Domestica as a jam band? Not quite…

Before they left the stage, they gave out one final treat. Earlier in the set a woman ran up to Heidi and told her it was her birthday, and (I think) made a request — Mercy Rule classic “Summer.” Heidi rolled into a verse of the song by herself as the rest of the band joined and transformed it into something slutty and psychedelic. Happy Birthday indeed.

Before Domestica I caught Sons of O’Leaver’s set, which was as cock-sure as always. They’re like Omaha’s unique version of The Replacements minus the booze and drugs (well, minus the drugs anyway). Don’t get lost in the fog of rhythms — both guitarists have some of the most clever guitar licks you’ll likely hear at The Club. Pay Attention!

This was the annual Speed! Nebraska showcase featuring all S!N bands. Missing from the festivities, however, was label co-founder Gary Dean Davis, who it was announced from stage, was at UNMC recovering from surgery. More details I cannot say, other than it sounds like Gary’s going to be all right.

On the other hand, I never heard why this year’s Soapbox Derby was cancelled, though I did hear rumors of a fill-in event in the near future involving other juvenile modes of racing transportation…

* * *

What’s this, a new local-focused record store?

The news of this new venture came via Facebook yesterday, headlined “Make Believe Music Shop Grand Opening (and free 2nd St. Creamery Ice Cream)“.

“Make Believe Music Shop and 2nd St. Creamery are coming together to celebrate the latest venture from the people who brought you Make Believe Studios in Little Italy. Just as the studio serves Omaha-area bands, so too will the record store, aiming to line our shelves with primarily Nebraska artists. Opening day is set for Friday, July 19.”

The shop is asking for help getting area musicians – as many of the 1,000 local artists as possible – into the store the first few days to bring in their records to sell.

“In addition, there will be free ice cream, BBQ and cold drinks. Join us in celebrating a new addition to the Omaha music scene.”

* * *

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 © 2013 Tim McMahan. All rights reserved.

Lazy-i

Live Review: Domestica; Travelling Mercies launches Kickstarter for Motel…

Category: Blog,Reviews — Tags: , , , , , , — @ 1:49 pm February 25, 2013
Domestica at The Sydney, Feb. 22, 2013.

Domestica at The Sydney, Feb. 22, 2013.

by Tim McMahan, Lazy-i.com

Who remembers this, circa Nov. 1994?

Who remembers these guys, circa Nov. 1994? Tisdale is the one in the hat.

Domestica unveiled a lineup change at the Sydney Friday night with the addition of Paul Tisdale on drums. The last time I saw Tisdale play live was way back in ’93 with his classic band, Sideshow. Back then, Tisdale became a slashing, violent blur every time the guitars kicked in. Twenty years later and time hasn’t diminished Tisdale’s insane percussion skills. Not in the least.

In fact, Tisdale is the first drummer (including Ron Albertson) whose drumming was so big that it drowned out Jon Taylor’s and Heidi Ore’s usual mammoth roar… at least during the first part of Friday night’s set. Tisdale hits those friggin’ drums hard hard hard, and as a result, they’re loud loud loud. So loud that two songs in, the sound guy passed a message to Taylor, who responded with: “Those are the words I love to hear.” The “words” (I think) were “turn your guitar up,” because that’s exactly what Taylor did, and would again a couple songs later.

Does any band really need to be that loud. The answer, of course, is yes. With Taylor pushing it to 11, the earth’s tilt was restored and all was right with the world once again.  Now if only the Sydney could have turned up Heidi’s vocals, which were lost where I stood on the opposite side of the room from the stacked PA and on the other side of Tisdale. It’s a balancing act that’s been around as long as I can remember seeing Heidi and Jon play. Add Tisdale and the equation becomes that much more difficult. Something tells me that over time, they’ll work it out. So is Tisdale a permanent part of Domestica? Let’s hope so.

* * *

Last week the folks in Travelling Mercies launched a Kickstarter campaign for their sophomore full-length album Motel. They’re trying to raise $4,000 to help cover their recording and production costs. After one weekend, they’re already 1/4 of the way there.

I’m trying to remember the last time I saw this band perform and think it had to have been years and years ago, way back in the old Saddle Creek Bar days. Back then, the band was sort of a laidback Americana/Folk band. That, apparently, no longer is the case, based on the couple demos that frontman Jeremy Holan passed along. We’re talking breakneck buzzsaw rock with a hint of Americana to give it a rural tilt. Holan sees Kickstarter as a simple way to presale the record, and to me, that’s the best way to use Kickstarter (if you’re a musician). Check it out.

* * *

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 © 2013 Tim McMahan. All rights reserved.

Lazy-i

Birthday Suits tonight; Domestica featuring Pawl Tisdale (ex-Sideshow) Saturday…

Category: Blog — Tags: , , — @ 1:53 pm February 22, 2013

by Tim McMahan, Lazy-i.com

I have no idea if shows are cancelled tonight. Frankly, I don’t know why they would be as the streets are fine, just fine.

Anyway…

Birthday Suits

Birthday Suits

Two shows of note tonight: Asian Man recording artist Birthday Suits is playing at Slowdown Jr. with a band called “opk.” According to their label, Birthday Suits is “2-piece psychedelic garage-punk from the Twin Cities. Big riffs and high energy complimented by a wild live show.” Find out if they’re lying. $7, 9 p.m.

Meanwhile, over at The Barley Street tonight, Country & Western band The Electroliners plays with The Ronnys and the Sub-Vectors. $5, 9 p.m.

Highlight show of the weekend is at The Sydney Saturday night. Our old friends from Lincoln, Domestica, open for The Filter Kings and The Killigans. The twist here is that Domestica will be debuting a new drummer — the legendary Pawl Tisdale, who some of you codgers might remember from his work in seminal ’90s Lincoln power trio Sideshow. Sydney shows typically start at 9, so better get there early. $5?

Meanwhile, over at O’Leaver’s Saturday night, it’s Millions of Boys with Schwervon and Well Aimed Arrows. $5, 9:30 p.m.

Also Saturday night, Omahype (check out their fancy new website) presents Back When at The Barley Street Tavern with Worried Mothers and the humorous styles of OK Party Comedy. $5, 9 p.m. More info here.

See you on the red carpet…

* * *

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 © 2013 Tim McMahan. All rights reserved.

Lazy-i

Live Review and images from The Hear Nebraska CD release show…

Category: Blog,Reviews — Tags: , , , , — @ 1:53 pm December 5, 2011

by Tim McMahan, Lazy-i.com

Not a lot of time for a hardcore critique, so I thought I’d share some brief comments and photos taken at last Saturday night’s Hear Nebraska Vol. 1 CD release show at The Sydney. The event had a pretty decent turn-out despite the shitty weather, and the music couldn’t have been better (or louder).

Digital Leather at The Sydney, Dec. 3, 2011.

Digital Leather at The Sydney, Dec. 3, 2011.

Digital Leather had the biggest stand-up crowd of the evening, which is a dumb way of saying that more people stood near the edge of the Sydney’s so-called “stage” for their set than any other Saturday night. This continues to be my favorite local band.

Domestica at The Sydney, Dec. 3, 2011.

Domestica at The Sydney, Dec. 3, 2011.

Domestica brought it like the “old days,” and took every opportunity to let the crowd know that they were, in fact, from the “old days.” Lighten up on the old-age stuff folks. Your brand of punk rock is timeless and eviscerates 95 percent of the competition that’s young enough to be your kids.

Masses at The Sydney, Dec. 3, 2011.

Masses at The Sydney, Dec. 3, 2011.

This was a different Masses than I heard in July 2010 at TWR. Their sound has evolved from sludge noise to intricate, orchestrated, voice-of doom-rock that borders on metal but isn’t metal. Of the three or four all-instrumental rock bands that I’ve seen from Omaha and Lincoln (and you know who I’m talking about) these guys are now on top of the list.

Not pictured but worth mentioning is Dim Light, who played an amazing set. Is it me or is their sound constantly evolving to something that is thoroughly unique and brutal? Amazing stuff.

* * *

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 © 2010 Tim McMahan. All rights reserved.

Lazy-i

Live Review: Cursive’s Domestica; MAHA 8/13; and the winners are…

Category: Blog,Reviews — Tags: , , — @ 2:00 pm January 19, 2011
Cursive at the Waiting Room, 1/18/11

Cursive at the Waiting Room, 1/18/11

By Tim McMahan, Lazy-i.com

The chatter in the crowd: How old were you when this album came out? Me, I don’t remember. What I do remember is interviewing the band a decade ago in the back room of the USA Baby store just east of 72nd on Dodge St. where Tim Kasher’s mom worked. Kasher had just moved back to Omaha. Ted Stevens had just joined the band. They were a tight, fun, happy bunch singing bitter, angry songs about Kasher’s broken heart. Cursive’s Domestica was the ultimate break-up album, whose cover art featured a young couple in strange, awkward embrace — a couple played by a cute young girl who would become the keyboardist/vocalist of Fortnight (and who looks as cute as ever) and a young guy who would become a Grammy Award winning CD sleeve designer. Domestica would eventually become recognized as Cursive’s epic masterpiece, and songs like “The Martyr” and “The Casualty” would become a permanent part of their set list for the next 10 years.

It didn’t matter if Kasher messed up the opening line of “The Casualty” or if he even remembered the words, because the SRO crowd at The Waiting Room last night spent the evening singing along like an indie rock Greek chorus — a happy soccer mob chanting anthems that have become part of their lives. The set honestly didn’t sound much different than when they first played the album top-to-bottom at Sokol Underground a decade ago. Kasher’s voice certainly hasn’t changed… much. The guitar interplay between Kasher and Stevens — the most distinctive element of the album — was as playfully distorted as ever.  As much as the songs themselves, it was that guitar style that I remember most about that album.

So yes, they played all the songs in order with no pauses or stage banter in between, and that’s just the way the crowd wanted to hear it. It’s a slim set — just a little over a half-hour — and that brevity has helped it age well. But while I have to admit that Casualty/Martyr are one of the best one-two punches in indie rock history, Domestica is not my favorite Cursive album, not anymore. That honor goes to 2003’s The Ugly Organ (which hopefully we’ll hear in its entirety in 2013). Regardless, Domestica is the band’s most important album. It’s the one that pushed them to the next level of national attention, at a time when everyone around the country was just beginning to whisper about what was happening in Omaha.

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The folks at the MAHA Music Festival announced this year’s dates/location — August 13 at Lewis and Clark Landing. The festival remains a one-day event, which makes it more of an all-day concert rather than a festival. Regardless, their growth won’t be contingent on the success or failure of the Red Sky Music Festival, but rather their willingness to take risks and go out on a limb with a line-up that will attract the gaze of the world outside of our city limits. Will they be successful? Come back tomorrow for the final part of this year’s 2011 music predictions and find out…

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And now, the moment you’ve all been waiting for: Here are the winners of the Lazy-i Best of 2010 CD sampler:

Elizabeth A. Toepel, Morse Bluff, NE
Adrian Mejorado, Edinburg, TX
Cami Rawlings, Omaha, NE

Congratulations! And thanks to everyone who entered the drawing. See you next year!

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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 © 2011 Tim McMahan. All rights reserved.

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