Will the new venues (Astro, Admiral, Steelhouse) reduce NOmaha Syndrome? Criteria, Little Brazil, Big Nope tonight…

Category: Blog — Tags: , , , , , — @ 10:52 am November 27, 2021
Criteria at The Waiting Room, Dec. 28, 2019. The band returns tonight with Little Brazil and Big Nope.

by Tim McMahan, Lazy-i.com

Here’s a Saturday-morning random discussion: Will all the new live music venues — Astro, Admiral, Steelhouse — reduce NOmaha Syndrome? 

A friend brought up the question. He asked if those three larger venues currently being constructed will change Omaha’s reputation as a fly-over city for touring indie bands. We’re talking about:

— the remodeled Sokol Auditorium, renamed The Admiral, with its 1,400 capacity, slated to open in February.
— the Steelhouse Omaha project by Omaha Performing Arts, with a stand-up capacity of 1,500 to 3,000, scheduled for 2023, rumored to be booked by Live Nation.
— the Astro in La Vista, a massive new amphitheater with a capacity of 5,000 outside and 2,500 inside, slated to open in 2023.

That’s a lot of new stages. But will they make a difference to the bands that have been passing Omaha by? Depends on which bands you’re talking about.

Check out the acts that have announced tours in the past couple weeks, all of which won’t be coming through Omaha: Big Thief, Courtney Barnett, Waxahatchee, Strand of Oaks, Nation of Language, Mitski, Pavement, The War on Drugs, Perfume Genius, Hand Habits, The Oh Sees…

None on that list would sell out the smallest of those three new venues, though Barnett and War on Drugs might sell out Slowdown.

Big Thief, who haven’t come through Omaha since they played at The Lookout Lounge in April 2016, is asking $34-$39 for its closest show at the 2,500-capacity Riviera Theatre in Chicago. I doubt Big Thief could sell out 700-capacity Slowdown with a $40 ticket, but that’s what it might take to get them here again. I’m not sure there’s enough people in Omaha who know or like Big Thief. 

Hand Habits played at Slowdown Jr. before the lockdown in April 2019. That show was a $10 ticket that also included Tomberlin, and it drew around 60 people. The band’s closest approach to Omaha is the 550-capacity Fine Line in Minneapolis, with tickets priced at $30-$45.  No doubt when they were booking their tour, their finger slid right past Omaha as a possible tour stop. 

For fans of quality indie music, the problem is there just ain’t enough of us, and what few there are aren’t willing to pay what other cities are paying to see the same bands. Hard to believe in a metro of 800k, but this is what happens when you don’t have local radio or any media covering these bands. 

So who will be playing at these new venues? Time will tell, but bet on a lot of mainstream acts, metal bands, country acts, anything that will get butts in seats, and why not? You can’t blame the promoters for wanting to make back their investment in what will be three amazing venues.

And why dwell on the negative? We Just had Spoon and Mannequin Pussy, right? And in the coming months at Slowdown you have Black Angels, Sleigh Bells, Faye Webster, Lala Lala and Fuzz, while 1% is bringing in Diet Cig, Bonnie Prince Billy, Parquet Courts, Mdou Moctar, Azure Ray, Gary Numan, We Were Promised Jetpacks, Sasami, Mogwai, Destroyer, Beach Bunny, ADULT, Built to Spill, The Antlers, and Dinosaur Jr…. We’re actually doing pretty well…

. 0 0 0 .

Speaking of shows… tonight at The Waiting Room it’s kinda/sorta the annual holiday show featuring Criteria. In years’ past this happened around Christmas, so we’re getting a jump on things (1% has yet to announce a big Christmas show this year….). Opening is Big Nope — Nate Van Fleet’s band (and we all know Nate’s high-tailing it to LA in the new year), and Little Brazil. Great show for just $10. Starts at 8 p.m. and this is a No Vax No Entry gig, so bring your evidence…

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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 © 2021 Tim McMahan. All rights reserved.

Lazy-i

Brad Hoshaw hits house circuit; Noah Sterba love; Nomaha Alerts: Luna, Beach Slang; Closeness tonight…

Category: Blog — Tags: , , , , — @ 12:47 pm July 26, 2017

Closeness at O’Leaver’s April 30, 2016. The band plays at The Slowdown tonight.

by Tim McMahan, Lazy-i.com

What’s becoming a common occurrence (even with more established artists — Eric Bachmann just played a show at a house a couple blocks from me), Omaha singer/songwriter Brad Hoshaw announced he’s put together a “Summer House Tour.”

Although I’ve performed many house concerts over the years, this is my first time trying a full tour of house concerts,” Hoshaw said. “I will be performing 10 shows in living rooms and backyards across six states (NE, IA, WI, MN, SD, KS). The hosts are fans who have invited their friends and family to come enjoy a concert in their home. I’m not charging the hosts any money for the concert, but will rely on audience donations to fund my travels. My goal is to create a more authentic personal experience that will connect and strengthen the community that has formed around my music.”

Hoshaw will be selling an exclusive 4-song EP on the tour, which runs Aug. 3-20 starting in Overland Park, KS, and finishing in Lincoln, NE. The full schedule (including the Omaha date) is at bradhoshawmusic.com/shows.

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Noisey did a nice write-up on Noah Sterba’s new album, 13-Bar Blues. You can read it here.

People are taking notice of the cadre of talent talent surrounding Sterba, consisting of David Nance, Simon Joyner, and the team of musicians who appear on their records. Someone should come up with a name for them — how ’bout the Almost Music Collective, since they all have been known to hang out there…

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I’ve been told that my NOmaha Alerts are little more than whining and are a negative especially in the face of all the other talent local promoters are bringing to town. Maybe so, but more than anything, they point out who’s passing over Omaha on their tour, and maybe one of those promoters can work a miracle and get them to add a local date, who knows?

Top of my NOmaha list is Luna, who just announced a North American tour. The closest pass to our fair city is Nov. 1-4, when they play Minneapolis, Chicago, Milwaukee and St. Louis. The tour is in support of an album of covers (including songs by The Cure, Mink DeVille and Fleetwood Mac) called A Sentimental Education, and an instrumental EP called A Place fo Greater Safety — the band’s first  output since Luna’s last studio album Rendezvous, released 13 years ago. Someone get them here.

I think I already mentioned the Afghan Whigs NOmaha alert. Today the band released a new single called “You Want One,” which is available as a free download here. Anyway, they’re still not coming here.

And Beach Slang yesterday announced their fall headlining tour. The closest pass to Omaha is KC Sept. 9, Chicago Sept. 17, Denver Nov. 7. NOmaha, though notably See Through Dresses will be joining them on five dates in mid-November.

* * *

Back to what IS happening in Omaha… tonight Closeness, the project featuring Todd and Orenda Fink, opens for Nicolas Jaar at The Slowdown in the big room. Jaar is a Chilean music producer, mixing engineer and DJ based in NYC. Having listened to some of his stuff this morning on Spotify, dancing not only is advised, it’s recommended. $20, 8 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 © 2017 Tim McMahan. All rights reserved.

Lazy-i

Thick Paint added to Big Thief show; NOmaha alerts (but Beck plays CB); Esme Patterson tonight…

Category: Blog — Tags: , , , — @ 12:47 pm July 12, 2017

by Tim McMahan, Lazy-i.com

Thick Paint has been named as the opener to tomorrow night’s Big Thief show at fabulous O’Leaver’s. If you remember, Big Thief was slated to open for Conor Oberst outdoors in Benson (on Military Ave.) but the show got nixed by the City who said no more outdoor shows during the week.

Conor cancelled but Big Thief was rescheduled at The Club. I understand there was some competition for this opening slot. Congrats to Thick Paint for nabbing it. I’m also told that this show will sell out, so you may want to get your tickets today.

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This week in NOmaha Alerts; tours have been announced by Gillian Welch, Protomartyr and Matt Pond PA. None are headed to Omaha.

Gillian Welch has some local connections and no doubt would do well here. On the other hand Protomartyr and Matt Pond PA both played here recently. Still, I’d love to see both again. Protomartyr, who got their start on Hardly Art Records, just signed with Domino for their next album, A Private Understanding, which comes out Sept 29.

BTW, this morning Oh Sees shared a new track off their upcoming Castle Face release, Orc. Still no Omaha date on the tour list. Come on, promoters!

Outweighing that dreary news is the fact that Beck has been scheduled to play Stir Cove Sept. 9. Beck is sort of a bucket-list band for me, and it looks like I might finally have a reason to check out Stir Cove, which I’ve managed to avoid all these years. Pre-sale for Beck started today with the promo code DREAMS; it continues tomorrow at 10 a.m. with code WOW2017; general ticket sales start 10 a.m. Friday. Pre-sale GA tickets are priced at $60 and some change, including fees, via Ticketmaster.

It should be interesting to see how well this one does. Sell out? BTW, Beck is opening for U2 on their fall stadium tour.

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Tonight Esme Patterson returns to The Waiting Room. She was just there in March with Lucero.  The Hottman Sisters open tonight’s show, which starts at 9 and costs $14.

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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 © 2017 Tim McMahan. All rights reserved.

Lazy-i

More NOmaha alert(s)… MONO, Thick Paint, BIB tonight…

Category: Blog — Tags: , , , — @ 12:47 pm June 27, 2017

MONO at The Waiting Room, Sept. 25, 2012. The band returns tonight to The Waiting Room.

by Tim McMahan, Lazy-i.com

The NOmaha Alerts caught the attention of readers who pointed out that Alvvays, Slowdive and Pinegrove all are bypassing Omaha on upcoming tours. Of those three, the Pinegrove tour is the most surprising miss, though they played Milk Run last July. Alvvays played Maha in 2015. Getting Slowdive would be a feat I’d never expect to happen (but stranger things have).

Add to those NOmaha additions Thee Oh Sees — or just Oh Sees, as they’ve officially changed their name. Oh Sees has consistently bypassed Omaha for years, and one has to assume there’s a story behind it. Why else would the band avoid us? Here’s the closest pass to Omaha on Oh Sees’ upcoming tour:

11-18 Cleveland, OH – Beachland Ballroom
11-19 Chicago, IL – Thalia Hall
11-23 Missoula, MT – Stage 112

It doesn’t take four days to drive from Chicago to Missoula.

Today’s NOmaha Alert:

Joseph will kick off a fall headline tour on Sept. 13 at the 9:30 Club in Washington, DC. Produced by Mike Mogis (Bright Eyes, Jenny Lewis), I’m Alone, No You’re Not (ATO) spent two weeks at No. 1 on Billboard’s Heatseekers Albums chart.”

9/22 – Chicago, IL @ Thalia Hall *
9/23 – Minneapolis, MN @ First Avenue *
9/24 – Franklin, TN @ Pilgrimage Music & Cultural Festival
NOmaha

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So who is actually playing in Omaha tonight?

Japanese 4-piece instrumental prog rock band MONO returns to The Waiting Room. I saw them open for The Album Leaf in 2012. From that 2012 Lazy-i Review: “MONO is a four-piece ambient rock band from Japan that plays soaring all-instrumental compositions that are equal parts majesty and sorrow. The recipe is two guitars, a bassist who doubles on keyboards, and drums. It’s gorgeous, lush music that tries to replicate the density of orchestral music using rock instruments, and at its best moments, succeeds.”

But there was a flaw to their performance, which you’ll have to go hear to read about. Opening for them tonight is our very own Thick Paint. $15, 9 p.m.

There’s also a house show at West Wing tonight (according to Facebook) with Springfield IL band Livin’ Thing, Champaign, IL’s Dream Probe and our very own BIB. $5, 9 p.m. More info here

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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 © 2017 Tim McMahan. All rights reserved.

Lazy-i

Live Review: Rusty Lord; new feature: NOmaha Alert (Broken Social Scene, !!!, Algiers)..

Category: Blog,Reviews — Tags: , — @ 12:50 pm June 26, 2017

Rusty Lord at O’Leaver’s, June 23, 2017.

by Tim McMahan, Lazy-i.com

It was a packed house Friday night at O’Leaver’s to see the debut of Rusty Lord. What can I say about Omaha’s latest garage-rock supergroup?

Their sound was close to what I expected: heavy-psych rock fueled equally by guitars and synths. Someone mentioned Ministry before the show, and you could hear the influence on the opening song, but mostly what we got was guitar metal a la Pro-Magnum with Johnny Vredenburg and Austin Ulmer screeching/yelling over layers of dense chaos.

Of course the main attraction was seeing Omaha rock legend Dave Goldberg behind a full drum kit riding his precise, hyper-kinetic rapid-fire attack. With everything else happening on stage, Goldberg carried these guys on his proverbial shoulders, keeping it all together, while the crowd went bananas.

If you missed it, Rusty Lord is scheduled to play Benson First Friday at The Sydney August 4 with Leafblower and DJ Tyrone Storm.

BTW, no sightings of the actual Rusty Lord (the WOWT weather guy). I’m told he was notified that he’d be on the list, but… no show. Next time, Rusty, next time…

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I get lots of press releases from promoters and labels. Lots and lots.

And I open almost every one. The reason I do is to see if the band being promoted is coming to Omaha on its next tour. The tour list always is at the bottom of the press release. Like the one I got last week about The Afghan Whigs’ North American Tour.

I go down the tour stops list and find:

Minneapolis
Chicago
Milwaukee

and

No Omaha

or, as it’s starting to become known: NOmaha

Unless I’m dreaming, it’s happening a lot more lately, at least when it comes to indie bands. If you’re wondering why Lazy-i isn’t updated every day, day in and day out, it’s because fewer indie shows means fewer reviews to post, fewer 10 Questions interviews, etc.

So, as a new feature here at Lazy-i, every time I get notified of a cool indie tour that is, once again, bypassing our fair city, I’ll put on a NOmaha Alert.

Today’s NOmaha alert(s):

Broken Social Scene:

The tour will follow the release of Broken Social Scene’s upcoming album Hug of Thunder, out on Arts & Crafts on July 7th, 2017.”

9/26/17 — Des Moines, IA @ Hoyt Sherman *
9/27/17 — Milwaukee, WI @ Pabst Theater *
9/28/17 — St. Paul, MN @ The Palace *
9/29/17– Chicago, IL @ Aragon Ballroom *
NOMAHA

!!! (chk chk chk) with Algiers

!!! (Chk Chk Chk) have announced additional US tour dates beginning this fall, a selection of which will be supported by Matador recording band, Algiers.” This is one I’d love to see.

June 30 | Salt Lake City, UT – Kilby Court
July 1 | Denver, CO – Globe Hall
July 7 | Katowice, Poland, – Tabron Nowa Muzyka
NOMAHA

Someone get on it! We need these shows…

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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 © 2017 Tim McMahan. All rights reserved.

Lazy-i