Sucettes120917
Sucettes at Pet Shop Gallery Dec. 9, 2017.

Welcome to Lazy-i, an online music magazine that includes feature interviews, reviews and news.

The focus is on the indie music scene. Yes, there’s a special emphasis on the best original bands in the Omaha area, but Lazy-i also offers interviews, stories and reviews about national indie bands.

Most of the feature stories and columns in Lazy-i will have previously been published in The Reader, Omaha’s monthly alternative newspaper.



Looking ahead, looking around; Lightning Stills tonight, New Found Glory Sunday…

Category: Blog — Tags: , — @ 8:14 am January 27, 2023
Lightning Stills at Petfest in 2021. The band plays at Slowdown Jr. tonight.

by Tim McMahan, Lazy-i.com

Man, I miss going to rock shows. The well has definitely been dry the past few weeks/months when it comes to touring indie bands. I haven’t written a live review since the Vera Devorah show at Reverb the day after Christmas.

And a glance at our local venues’ calendars shows slim pickings for the next few months. That said, it’s not just an Omaha thing. I spent some time last night looking at other regional show calendars and things are tough all over. 

RecordBar, a 300-capacity venue in Kansas City that counts Mammoth among its bookers is hosting School of Rock showcases all weekend, and is booking the same combination of tribute/cover bands and gloopy roots/funk and local acts through next month. They’re also getting the Unsane/Violenteer, Rural Alberta Advantage, Pedro the Lion and Zepparella/Bad Bad Men shows in the coming months that we’re getting but also have Kevin Morby, King Tuff and The Casket Lottery coming through.

The Bottleneck in Lawrence used to be a prime indie rock club and still hosts an occasional show. They’ve only got eight dates booked in February and the only upcoming indie show is The Lemon Twigs in mid-March (but they also have Kevin Morby in April). 

What about 7th St Entry in Minneapolis? Their website calendar combines 7th St. with Turf Club, Fine Line and Fitzgerald Theater. They’ve got Semisonic over the next few days, but their February is the same collection of cover/tribute acts and emo-night-type events. However, their February is a little better, with Samia, The Beths, Jerry Harrison/Adrian Belew and Viagra Boys on their calendar.

The point is, there’s not a lot of bands touring in January and February, and with temps below-zero this weekend who can blame them? Many of the few higher-end indie acts on tour through April have Omaha as a tour stop. There are, obviously, exceptions. 

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Alright, what about this weekend here in River City? 

Tonight at Slowdown Jr. local country howlers Lightning Stills opens for so-called “newgrass” band Arkansauce. $15, 8 p.m. 

Meanwhile, tonight at The Sydney Jeremy Mercy & The Rapture Orphans headlines a show with Box Eats Miah and J.P. Omaha. $10, 8 p.m. 

Tomorrow night (Saturday), Ragged Company opens for Fox and Orion Walsh at The Slowdown.

And then Sunday night pop-punk band New Found Glory headlines on The Slowdown’s big stage. Leanna Firestone opens at 8 p.m. $38. 

And that’s all I got. If I missed your show, put it in the comments section. Have a great 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 © 2023 Tim McMahan. All rights reserved.

Lazy-i

Another 2022 year-end list; glancing at ’23; new The Natural Lines…

Category: Blog — Tags: , , , — @ 1:58 pm January 25, 2023
A screen cap from The Natural Lines video for new single “Monotony.”

by Tim McMahan, Lazy-i.com

Personal critical guiding light and mentor Robert Christgau has published his 2022 Dean’s List at his And It Don’t Stop website. His preamble is worth the read alone, as he posits a perspective from a critic in his 80s who has been writing about rock music longer than I’ve been alive. He remains my favorite critic if for only his writing style that makes every phrase sing. Maybe not so much for his choices: His No. 1 album of 2022 was Selo i Ludy Performance Band, Bunch One, self-released in 2019, which none of us (likely) have heard. His No. 2 is a broadly held pop moment. Read and subscribe. I did. (BTW, here’s my year-end list for those who missed it…).

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On the other side of the coin is Paste Magazine‘s “33 Most Anticipated Albums of 2023.” If you define “indie” as primarily a singer/songwriter genre, then this list is for you, and includes two Saddle Creek Records artists (Shalom and Black Belt Eagle Scout). I’m also looking forward to those new ones by Quasi, Algiers, M83 and Everything But the Girl. Each listing includes a YouTube video to give you a taste of what’s coming. Of note: So far two of the 33 artists are currently scheduled to tour through Omaha — Runnner at The Slowdown Feb. 28 and The New Pornographers April 28 at The Waiting Room. 

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Not making the Paste list is our old friend Matt Pond’s new band The Natural Lines, whose self-titled debut will drop March 24 on Bella Union (preorder via Bandcamp). The band just released a new video for “A Scene that WIll Never Die,” but I like this video for the single “Monotony” better (see below). This album is the best thing Matt’s done in a long time. Here’s hoping that the band makes it to Omaha The Natural Lines eventually hits the road.

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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 © 2023 Tim McMahan. All rights reserved.

Lazy-i

Conor ‘jams’ at B-Bar; Lincoln’s DEMOS (ex-Strawberry Burns, The Sleepover) releases Hell’s Angles…

Category: Blog — Tags: , , , — @ 1:16 pm January 23, 2023

by Tim McMahan, Lazy-i.com

Hmmm…. another quiet weekend for me, though stuff happened, including a sort of Bright Eyes “secret show” at B-Bar Saturday night. “Bright Eyes” only in that two members of the core members – Conor Oberst and Mike Mogis — were in the band that also included MiWi La Lupa on drums, Zach Schmieder on bass, Cubby Phillips on guitar and Shawn Foree on synths. I did not attend this affair, but heard from various reports that the performance was “improvisational” and involved Mr. Conor singing articles from magazines. No Bright Eyes songs were performed. One person who was there said it was like going to a Bright Eyes show where you were allowed to talk during the performance. Another said it was like watching a band practice. 

It’s nice to see Oberst is still hanging around Omaha. He could live virtually anywhere he wants, and chooses to camp out in his hometown, which make him unique among the many Saddle Creek Records acts who defined Omaha’s indie sound in the late ‘90s/early ‘00s.  

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DEMOS, Hell’s Angles (2023, self-release)

You remember Lincoln’s Cory Kibler from Crush the Clown and Strawberry Burns fame? Sure you do. Cory’s got a new project called DEMOS that just dropped a new album today called Hell’s Angles

The 10-song LP has origins that date back to 2011, though most of it was recorded in Lincoln over the past few years. It was “mixed and produced by Jim ‘Kimo’ West, Grammy Award-winning solo artist and longtime guitarist for Weird Al. It was mastered by Golden Mastering in Ventura, CA.,” says Mr. Kibler.

The album has a real Built to Spill essence to it, thanks to the guitar work and Kibler’s Doug Martsch-esque vocals. The rest of the band consists of Greg Joyce, drums, guitar and vocals; Jarek Olivetti, guitars, vocals and drums on “Shut Each Other Up” and “Morning Will Come,” and James Tucci, bass, various synths and noises. It’s available on CD and digital download (buy it from the Bandcamp page), and maybe vinyl in the future. Kibler says don’t expect an album release show anytime soon as Olivetti lives in Seattle. 

There was a bit there when I wasn’t sure if we’d ever get these songs on tape,” Kibler said. “Definitely very different from the young band experience, when you’d use what little show money you had to record and mix an entire record in like six days! We have a horse-ton of other demoed songs as well, so look for our follow-up in 2033!”  

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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 © 2023 Tim McMahan. All rights reserved.

Lazy-i

The Faint re-emerge; new Stathi, Names Without Numbers; Plack Blague, Jeff in Leather Sunday…

Category: Blog — Tags: , , , — @ 7:50 am January 20, 2023
Plack Blague at The Slowdown, Dec. 30, 2016. The Blague performs at Reverb this Sunday afternoon.

by Tim McMahan, Lazy-i.com

Apologies for the lack of updates. Lazy-i is updating its back office software, so some things are moving around that, if done properly, you shouldn’t notice. Let me know if you do. 

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Local heroes The Faint have been added to the Just Like Heaven Festival May 13 in Pasadena. Rolling Stone said the third-annual one-day festival brings together “fan-favorite indie rock and electro-dance artists.” Yeah Yeah Yeahs are the headliners and top billed include MGMT, Future Islands, and M83. The Faint is listed in the smaller type, but they’re there. This is the first we’ve heard from the band in a few years, with frontman Todd Baechle living somewhere in the California desert near Thousand Palms, California. It’ll be a return engagement for The Faint, who played at the first Just Like Heaven fest back in 2019. 

Will this be a one-off show for The Faint? I highly doubt it. Keep your eyes peeled. 

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Since I’ve been remiss in posting, here are a few things that have been dangling in my in-box this week.

Singer/songwriter Stathi dropped a new track recently called “Make Sense, Make Amends.” Says Stathi: “I collaborated with a friend of mine in NYC and producer Emmett Folger on this one, and we recorded the tune at his studio in Brooklyn. We played all of the instruments between the two of us and I recorded all of the vocals with the exception of the vocal samples that are laced into the song.” Check it out and watch for a new demos release from Stathi in the coming weeks.

Omaha power pop act Names Without Numbers dropped a new single called “Florida.” Says NWN’s Dave Owens: “We plan to release 1-2 more singles and then an EP in spring. We already have studio time booked in May to record another collection of songs and hope for a late 2023 release. Then on top of that, it is the 20-year anniversary of our first LP, Running Marathons/Chasing Ambulances. We’ll have a full remastered re-release with vinyl and other goodies later this year via Steadfast Records.”

Cleveland’s Steadfast Records counts The Appleseed Caste and Unwed Sailor among its roster. Check out the single below:

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Actually, another reason for lack of updates has been the lack of shows. This weekend is no exception. 

Only one show is on the radar — that bondage-loving EDM-powered, Lincoln-based, leather-gimp Plack Blague is playing an afternoon show at Reverb Lounge Sunday. You read that right – a matinee. Joining him is the rising local electronic music artist Jeff in Leather and Gore-TXT doing a DJ set. .No idea why the afternoon scheduling as there’s nothing else on the Reverb schedule that day. So… experiment? $10, 4 p.m. It’s as good a reason as any to do some day drinking.

I’d be remiss to not mention what Pageturners has going on this weekend. Saturday night they have The Rare Candies and Bad Self Portraits, 8 p.m.; while Sunday night is Kelly Hunt and McCarthy Trenching, 7 p.m. Pageturners shows typically don’t have a cover but be prepared to drop some money in the hat for the bands (if asked).

And believe it or not, that’s all I got. If I missed your show, put it in the comments section. Have a great 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 © 2023 Tim McMahan. All rights reserved.

Lazy-i

The Broke Loose tonight; Perfect Form, Minne Lussa, Dirty Talker Saturday…

Category: Blog — Tags: , , , — @ 8:17 am January 13, 2023
Perfect Form at O’Leaver’s, Jan. 31, 2020. The band returns to O’Leaver’s Saturday night.

by Tim McMahan, Lazy-i.com

We’re in the heart of winter, and that means no touring indie shows for the foreseeable future. Oh well, let’s take what we can get.

Tonight at The Down Under Lounge, for instance, sees the return of indie twang rockers The Broke Loose. As I was digging around the internet to see if the band released anything new, I fell upon their anthem for Omaha soccer franchise Union Omaha, which really isn’t indicative of their sound, but I had to share it anyway. The band takes The DU stage at 9:30. No price listed.

Then tomorrow night there’s a trifecta of bands playing at fabulous O’Leaver’s, headlined by Lincoln band Perfect Form, who we last saw at O’Leaver’s back in 2020 (in fact, I think they were the last band I saw before the Covid lock-down!). Perfect Form includes members of Pharmacy Spirits fronted by Jim Reilly. Their sound is reminiscent of so-called “First Wave” acts like Joy Division, Gang of Four and Wire. Joining them is Omaha band Minne Lussa and Lincoln act Dirty Talker — a trio featuring Brendan McGinn, Adam 2000 and Justin Kohlmetscher. 9 p.m., $7.

Also Saturday night, Bennie Does Bowie returns to The Waiting Room. $10, 9 p.m. 

And that’s all I got. If I missed your show, put it in the comments section. Have a great 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 © 2023 Tim McMahan. All rights reserved.

Lazy-i

Music Visions for 2023: A look forward (and backward) at the Omaha and national indie music scenes; BIB, Whipkey tonight…

Category: Blog,Column — Tags: , — @ 7:41 am January 11, 2023

by Tim McMahan, Lazy-i.com

What mysteries will be revealed as I gaze into my magic Fender Squire Strat and see the future of Omaha’s (and the nation’s) indie music scene? Ah, but before we get to 2023, let’s see how I did with my predictions for 2022:

2022 Prediction: COVID-19 will have its last ugly gasp this winter and then will quickly fade away (except from our memories). By late summer, music venues’ mask-and-vax mandates will be a thing of the past.

Reality: Mask-and-vax mandates are distant memories, but COVID is still very much with us.

2022 Prediction: With TikTok creating the next generation of pop stars, more indie acts will take advantage of the platform.

Reality: TikTok remains a potent talent incubator … for pop stars, not indie stars.

2022 Prediction: The Maha Music Festival will be back and at full capacity. But it won’t be alone. Another Nebraska-based, indie-flavored, day-long music festival will be announced in ’22 that will be in direct competition.

Reality: The Outlandia Festival, with headliners Wilco and The National, was launched at Falconwood Park in Bellevue.

2022 Prediction: With two small music venues closing in ’21, watch as a new, small live-music venue opens to help fill the void.

Reality: There have been new venues in the past year, but nothing could replace The Brothers.

2022 Prediction: Helping fill those small-venue stages will be an army of next-generation indie bands created during the pandemic, many consisting of children of the aught-era indie bands that made Omaha famous.

Reality: Only a couple come to mind: Cat Piss and Pagan Athletes, both bands featuring the progeny of local music legend John Wolf.

2022 Prediction: Unfortunately, when it comes to popular national indie acts, we’ll continue to be “NOmaha” for national tours.

Reality: See my year in review story, published here last month. Pretty much dead-on target.

2022 Prediction: Look for another big-time indie music name to be taken down by a #metoo-style scandal.

Reality: In August, Arcade Fire’s Win Butler was accused of sexual misconduct.

2022 Prediction: After opening offices in Los Angeles and New York City, Saddle Creek Records will make a major announcement that will impact the label’s Omaha legacy.

Reality: Nothing new here, though is their Omaha staff shrinking?

2022 Prediction: Bands and performers we’ll be talking about this time next year: David Nance, Little Brazil, Modest Mouse, Christian Lee Hutson, DIIV, Spoon, Desaparecidos, Yo La Tengo, Jenny Lewis and (once again) Phoebe Bridgers.

Reality: Nance, Little Brazil, CLH, Spoon, Hutson, Desa, YLT and Bridgers all had new releases in 2022.

2022 Prediction: No Filter 2021 will be the last Rolling Stones tour.

Reality: The Stones are immortal.

2022 Prediction: A certain music journalist will begin compiling information for an oral history of the Omaha/Nebraska music scene.

Reality: Not yet, but soon.

2022 Prediction: After years of being shut out, a Saddle Creek Records act will finally perform on “Saturday Night Live.”

Reality: Ugh! I’m giving up!

So, six out of 12 – 50%? Bah, I can do better than that! Let’s take a look at what will happen in 2023:

Prediction: For a majority of young indie music acts, recording and releasing entire albums is costly and almost always a money loser. Beginning this year, we’ll begin to see a new focus on bands (and labels) promoting individual tracks rather than full albums. Is the album era beginning to wane?

Prediction: With inflation through the roof and the erosion of album revenues, touring also has become a money-losing proposition for new bands. Watch as more artists join Santigold, who cancelled her tour in September stating the current tour model is not sustainable. For many bands, touring will be limited to close-to-home markets.

Prediction: Big music festivals and national indie tours will be dominated almost solely by legacy bands in ’23 — acts whose heydays were one, two, even three decades ago. OK Boomer.

Prediction: Also in the bummer category, despite the vinyl explosion, downtown Omaha will not be able to sustain so many record stores. Watch as one of them closes its doors in ’23.

Prediction: In a shrewd, money-making move, a number of large local stages once known for hosting indie rock shows will begin booking full weekends of cover bands, Ranch Bowl-style.

Prediction: Omaha Performing Arts’ new Steelhouse music venue will open in May. Booked by Live Nation, it won’t be afraid to take chances (partially because it’s a funded nonprofit) and will pump new life into Omaha’s waning indie music scene.

Prediction: The Maha Festival will make a huge announcement after it enjoys yet another successful year in 2023. Don’t worry, great things are on its horizon.

Prediction: Meanwhile, Outlandia Festival will be bigger and better in Year 2, adding on-site camping and a broader array of artists, including new breakthrough indie acts.

Prediction: So, does Omaha have room for a third music festival? You better believe it. Watch for the announcement.

Prediction: The band with the longest-running original lineup, U2, will finally come to an end.

Prediction: Bands we’ll be talking about this time next year: David Nance, Lewsberg, Phoebe Bridgers (again), The Faint, Courtney Barnett, The Smiths, Parquet Courts, Hand Habits, Orville Peck, Matt Whipkey, Cactus Nerve Thang, Icky Blossoms and Car Seat Headrest.

Prediction: A huge movie crew will arrive here in River City in ’23 to begin filming a Netflix/Amazon/Hulu docu-drama series about the music scene during the early 2000s. Omaha, get ready for your closeup!

Over The Edge is a monthly column by Reader senior contributing writer Tim McMahan focused on culture, society, music, the media and the arts. Email Tim at tim.mcmahan@gmail.com.

First published in January 2023 issue of The Reader. Copyright © 2023 Tim McMahan. All rights reserved.

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I predict two shows of importance tonight…

Omaha noise/punk band BIB (Pop Wig Records) kicks off yet another tour tonight at Reverb Lounge. Joining them on tonight’s bill are Total Sham, Dose, and Fire Sign. $10, 8 p.m.

Also tonight, Matt Whipkey, Justin Lamoureux and Aly Peeler are having “singer/songwriter roundtable” at The Jewell. $10, 7 p.m.

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Lazy-i Best of 2022

Relive the year gone by with the  Lazy-i Best of 2022 Comp CD!

The collection includes my favorite indie tunes I’ve come across throughout the past year as part of my tireless work as a music critic for Lazy-i and The Reader. Among those included: Big Thief, Arcade Fire, Belle and Sebastian, Sudan Archive, Megan Siebe, Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Plains, Simon Joyner, Rosie Thomas and more.  The full track listing is here.

To enter to win a copy of the CD, send me an email with your mailing address to tim.mcmahan@gmail.com. Hurry, contest deadline is Thursday, January 12, at midnight.

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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 © 2023 Tim McMahan. All rights reserved.

Lazy-i

Lazy-i Best of 2022 compilation CD; Solid Goldberg, Minne Lussa, Clarence Tilton tonight…

Category: Blog — Tags: , — @ 2:11 pm January 6, 2023
Lazy-i Best of 2022 compilation CD

by Tim McMahan, Lazy-i.com

In the “better late than never” department, the mail finally brought my batch of the annual Lazy-i comp CDs. I blame supply chain issues and other various and sundry excuses. Regardless, here it is, and once again, dear reader, you have a chance to win a copy.

I’ve been putting together this sampler since ’94, originally as a mix tape, switching to CDs in ’99. Someone recently asked me how I define indie music. I said, to me, it’s defined by a combination of college and satellite radio playlists, indie record labels and my notion of what “indie” means after listening to this style of music for more than 30 years. There is no single definition, but the artists included in the 2022 Best Of Lazy-i Compilation are about as close as I can get to defining the current state of indie. The sampler is comprised of acts I’ve interviewed or reviewed over the past year, along with my favorite tracks from 2022.

The track list:

Belle and Sebastian, “Unnecessary Drama, from the album A Bit of Previous (Matador)

Arcade Fire, “Unconditional I (Lookout Kid)” from the album WE (Columbia)

Big Thief, “Certainty” from the album Dragon New Warm Mountain I Believe in You (4AD)

Plains, “Problem with It” from the album I Walked with You a Ways (Anti)

Alex G, “Miracles” from the album God Save the Animals (Domino)

Yeah Yeah Yeahs, “Spitting Off the Edge of the World” from the album Cool It Down (Secretly Canadian)

Tyga & Curtis Roach, “Bored in the House” from Bodies Bodies Bodies original the motion picture soundtrack (A24 Music)

Sudan Archives, “Selfish Soul” from the album Natural Brown Prom Queen (Stones Throw)

Yard Act, “Rich” from the album The Overload (Island)

Alvvays, “Easy on Your Own?” from the album Blue Rev (Polyvinyl)

Momma, “Motorbike” from the album Household Name (Lucky Number)

Automatic, “New Beginning” from the album Excess (Stones Throw)

Horsegirl, “Anti-glory” from the album Versions of Modern Performance (Matador)

First Aid Kit, “Angel” from the album Palomino (Columbia)

Freedy Johnston, “There Goes a Brooklyn Girl” from the album Back on the Road to You (Forty Below)

Little Brazil, “Same Old Dress” from the album Just Leave (Max Trax)

Tim Kasher, “I Don’t Think About You” from the album Middling Age (15 Passenger)

Megan Siebe, “Easy Street” from the album Swaying Steady (Grapefruit)

Simon Joyner, “Tekamah” from the album Songs from a Broken Guitar (Grapefruit)

Superchunk, “Endless Summer” from the album Wild Loneliness (Merge)

Rosie Thomas, “We Should be Together” self-release single

Want a copy of the CD? Enter to win one in the annual drawing! To enter, send me an email with your mailing address to tim.mcmahan@gmail.com. Hurry, contest deadline is Thursday, Jan. 12 at midnight.

The playlist also is available in Spotify. Simply click this link or search “Tim McMahan Lazy-i Best of” in Spotify then select Playlists, and you’ll find it along with a few from past years…

BTW, the cover photo is of my grandparents’ restaurant, Ming Toy Cafe, once located at 45th and Military Ave — one of the first Chinese restaurants in Omaha. The cafe’s name lives on with Ming Toy Gallery, a new art space that will open in February at 6066 Maple Street in downtown Benson. More on that later.

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Two shows happening tonight. As part of The Omaha Bug Symposium being held at Reverb Lounge, the legendary Solid Goldberg,, a.k.a. Dave Goldberg’s one-man big-funk project, is on the launchpad and ready to blow your mind. Megarhyssa will also perform and there will be bug-related lectures and things. 8 p.m., $13.

Meanwhile, around the block at The Waiting Room, the always amazing Minne Lussa opens for Omaha alt-country giants Clarence Tilton. Ragged Company also is on the bill. $10, 8 p.m.

That’s all I got. If I missed your show, put it in the comments section. Have a great 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 © 2023 Tim McMahan. All rights reserved.

Lazy-i

David Nance and Mowed Sound, Oquoa, Mezcal Brothers tonight; happy new year…

Category: Blog — Tags: , , — @ 11:56 am December 30, 2022
Dave Nance Group at The Waiting Room, Nov. 13, 2018. Nance and Mowed Sound return to TWR tonight.

by Tim McMahan, Lazy-i.com

You’ll have a chance to celebrate the New Year early with two shows happening tonight — and check it out: They’re timed so you can catch both.

Tonight at the Waiting Room Oquoa headlines a three-band bill that includes David Nance & Mowed Sound in the opening slot. Mesonjixx also is on the bill. Not sure what Oquoa has been up to lately recording-wise, though they continue playing live. As for Nance, he’s always releasing something new. On Nov. 30 he quietly released Mowed Sound Vol. 1 on Bandcamp (and cassette), a collection of live cuts from shows in Philly and LA, which includes the new funkified version of “Credit Line.” Show starts at 9 p.m., $10.

Earlier in the evening, hep-daddies The Mezcal Brothers are bringing their brand of rockabilly to The B. Bar (4330 Leavenworth, right next to Barrett’s). No price listed for this one. This super-early show starts at 5:30 and should wrap up by 8:30, giving you plenty of time to get to The Waiting Room for Nance.

There are no indie shows slated for the remainder of the weekend. As for New Year’s Eve, well, what’s the old saying about it being for amateurs? See you in 2023, with the release of the annual Predictions column…

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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 © 2022 Tim McMahan. All rights reserved.

Lazy-i

Live Review: Vera Devorah, Breakers; Garst, Problems tonight…

Category: Blog,Reviews — Tags: , , , , — @ 7:52 am December 27, 2022
Vera Devorah at Reverb Lounge, Dec. 26, 2022.

by Tim McMahan, Lazy-i.com

One reason I ventured out to Reverb Lounge in the crippling cold last night — on a school night no less! — was to see Vera Devorah, the eponymously named Lincoln trio. Because if there’s one thing missing in our music scene (and let’s face it, there are lottttts of things missing these days), it’s female-fronted indie bands.

While the rest of the indie music world has been dominated by female-led bands for the past 10 years or so, Omaha has very few. Ones that come to mind include See Through Dresses (who haven’t played out recently and haven’t released any new material in five years), Megan Siebe (who also rarely plays live, though her 2021 album Steady Swaying is gorgeous), Anna McClellan (who I’m not sure lives here anymore), and the legendary Domestica (no new music since 2015)…

Then there’s Vera Devorah, who according to her online bio, has performed as a solo violinist, but this night played as a full-on rock trio, backed by bass and drums. Her electric guitar work, strong in basic riffage, is merely functional compared to her voice, which is as pure and perfect as any national indie vocalist, singing lines written from the heart, capturing whatever life challenge, moment, revelation or sadness that has come her way.

Set highlights included one about a dumpster fire, another written while lying in the middle of a George Floyd protest staring up at the sky, and her earnest cover of Leonard Cohen’s “Suzanne” — one of her favorite songs, which she said she played on repeat throughout 6th grade. Terrific set.

I’m beginning to wonder if Lincoln’s indie music scene is on the verge of eclipsing Omaha’s (or already has). I keep discovering amazing new Lincoln bands (some who have been around for years). And as marvelous as Petfest was last year as a showcase of local talent, Lincoln Calling dwarfed it. With only 50 miles separating us, more research is necessary… when it gets warmer.

Breakers at Reverb Lounge, Dec. 26, 2022.

Ol’ Reverb was beginning to fill up nicely when Breakers got cranking. The band is a trio of scene veterans, two of whom I already knew well. I’ve been watching bassist Robert Little play in bands for decades, all the way back to The Mariannes in the early 2000s. Same with drummer Matt Focht, who I remember from Head of Femur shows at Sokol Underground (and playing drums with Bright Eyes). But frontman Chris Yambor was new to me, and I take it from stage comments (and the fact the band hasn’t any recorded music (that I could find)), that this might be a fun side project, though they just played a show in September at O’Leaver’s.

Their music was fun and upbeat, and Yambor (unapologetically wearing an Eagles T-shirt) belted out the lines like a lounge singer fronting a jazzy version of Pavement or GBV. The lounge really came out when he was seated behind a keyboard for a couple numbers. I had forgotten about Little’s virtuoso bass skills, and Focht is a trip-wire rock drummer of the highest order. Alas, with an early morning call, I left the ever-crowding Reverb before the close of their set…

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Tonight at The Slowdown local rockers Garst top a three-band bill, with Problems — a.k.a. Darren Keen — a one-man dance party who alone is worth the price of admission, and Cable Network. $15, 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 © 2022 Tim McMahan. All rights reserved.

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Universe Contest, Those Far Out Arrows, Breakers, Vera Devorah tonight…

Category: Blog — @ 11:49 am December 26, 2022
Universe Contest at O’Leaver’s, Aug. 6, 2016. The band plays tonight at Reverb Lounge.

by Tim McMahan, Lazy-i.com

The holiday shows continue tonight at Reverb Lounge, which is boasting a big 4-band bill. Someone recently asked me about Reverb’s room capacity. I honestly don’t know though I’ve got to believe somewhere in the 150-200 range. Maybe less. With everyone still in town for the holidays and nothing else going on, tonight’s show could be crowded, especially for a Monday. 

Topping the bill is Lincoln band Universe Contest, who kinda/sorta have taken the role of our area’s Modest Mouse. They’ve developed a devoted following thanks, in part, to playing at The Sydney so many times over the years. So has Those Far Out Arrows, who (along with David Nance) are the standard bearers of Omaha psych/garage rock. Third on the bill is Breakers, a newish act consisting of guitarist Chris Yambor (Sing Eunuchs tapes, The Reports), bassist Robert Little (The Stay Awake), and drummer Matt Focht (Head of Femur). And opening the show at 8:30 is musician/ceramic artist/audio engineer Vera Devorah (check out her website).  

This is a crazy good line-up for a local show and it’s a shame it’s not at the much larger Waiting Room, where they’re hosting their usual new music showcase. If you’re planning on going to Reverb, buy tickets to ensure you’re not shut out if it sells out. You’ve been warned. $10 at the door, $12.85 advance.

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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 © 2022 Tim McMahan. All rights reserved.

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