Archive for the Music Category

The Dead Weather and Screaming Females at Terminal 5

Posted in Music on July 21, 2009 by cduerr

dead_weather_boweryl_381300e9b8e5b49123e5dc0241251441I went to see The Dead Weather and Screaming Females on Thursday at Terminal 5.  While I would much rather see Jack White play guitar, preferably in The White Stripes, I’m always interested in what he is up to, and I’m pretty much obsessed with Alison Mosshart, so I was more than pleased to attend.  Also, seeing Jack White at a bar on 9th Avenue prior to show didn’t decrease the anticipation, by any means.

We got there in time to see most of the Screaming Females’ set, and I have to say, it was one of the most unexpected and pleasant surprises I have had in a long time. The New Jersey trio is fronted by Marissa Paternoster, a diminutive, guitar shredding, Grace Slick sound a like.  She’s not good because she is a girl, she’s not good because she is small, she is just good.  I know I wasn’t the only one whose jaw dropped on several occasions during their set.  If you are attending any of The Dead Weather shows, do yourself a favor and get there early.  You won’t be disappointed.

On to The Dead Weather.  I was only able to listen to Horehound once all the way through and while I liked what I heard, I wasn’t blow away.  This was pretty much the general consensus of most people I have talked to. However, I did immediately get the feeling that the dark, sludgy tunes that permeate the record were meant to be heard live.  I was right.  Right off the bat, with Alison standing on top of the stage monitors and belting, “I’m 60 feet tall,” The Dead Weather owned the room.  All dressed in black and flanked by a dark curtain backdrop featuring the octagon from the album artwork, the band looked and sounded like they just crawled out of a swamp, and were none to pleased about it.  They stormed through most, if not all of Horehound and snuck in a couple of covers, one of which was Them’s “You Just Can’t Win,” which saw White step out from behind the drums, never relinquishing his drumsticks, to handle some front and center vocal duties.  For all of those worried about not having Jack on guitar, let your worries by laid to rest.  Dean Fertita, heavy with swagger, killed on guitar and organ duties.  Regardless, the crowd went insane when Jack strapped on a guitar and sang with Mosshart on “Will There be Enough Water,” accompanied by a searing guitar slow.  White and Mosshart’s chemistry was palpable and they looked like they were attached at the lips when sharing the mic.  They left the stage and came back for an encore, which ended with a ripping cover of Dylan’s, “New Pony.”   The crowd went nuts when they took a bow, and almost seemed relieved that it didn’t suck.  I know I was.

Jack White’s primal drumming will never exude the emotion his guitar playing does, but he still managed to maintain one hell of a presence from behind the kit, and the band put on one of the most devilishly enjoyable shows I have seen in a while.

I also managed to score a killer Rob Jones poster.  A very successful night indeed.

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Third Man Records, The Vault, and “I Cut Like A Buffalo”

Posted in Music on July 7, 2009 by cduerr

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So maybe I’m a sucker and maybe I’m not, but since Jack White has yet to let me down with pretty much anything he has done, I signed up for the Platinum membership of his new distribution venture through Third Man Records, called The Vault.

Basically, I laid out 60 bucks for a three month membership that gives me exclusive online content to The White Stripes, The Raconteurs, The Dead Weather, and other Third Man artists. This content includes exclusive videos, messages, photos, live concerts, pre-sale ticket access, etc. etc. While that is all well and good, it was the hard stuff that caught my eye had made me get out my credit card. Every three months, Platinum members get a never before released 12″ LP and 7″ single from one of the artists on Third Man, along with a some sort of T-shirt. The vinyl will be offered nowhere else and will only be printed for Platinum members. For the first installment I will be receiving a 180 gram double of Icky Thump with new artwork and a mono mix, and 7″ from The Dead Weather that has covers of Pentagram’s “Forever My Queen,” and Downliners Sect’s “Outside.”

We will see how this works out and I don’t know if I will continue my membership, but this limited addition vinyl has me pretty interested. For your viewing pleasure, check out a live clip of The Dead Weather’s “I Cut Like A Buffalo.”

Jenny Lewis at Battery Park July 4

Posted in Music on July 7, 2009 by cduerr

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While most people split for the long weekend, I had no travel plans and found myself in the eerily quiet city with my girlfriend and a handful of other folks.  Having just seen her a few weeks ago at Music Hall of Williamsburg, and really enjoying it, we decided to check out Jenny Lewis at Battery Park on the 4th of July. Some hip, rootsy rock and roll across from the Statue of Liberty seemed to be the patriotic thing to do, and after all, it was free.  

Opposite to the stark midtown streets, downtown was littered with tourists, and music fans who showed up in throngs to see Lewis and headliner Conor Oberst. After making our way through the winding queue, we found a spot in the shade and laid out a blanket.  Lewis came out donning an all-denim ensemble with American flag cape, looking as cute as ever.  She played nearly the exact same set as she did at Music Hall and her voice was noticeably off, but I didn’t care, and no one else seemed to either.  Forgoing a couple of the more sleepy numbers, it was a really upbeat and fun set.  Combine that with beautiful weather and no admittance charge, and I was more than satisfied.  We didn’t stick around for Oberst’s set. Seeing him help out on the Traveling Wilburys cover, “Handle With Care,” was enough for our group.  Plus, they weren’t serving booze, and I was antsy.  

This was my first River to River Festival event, and I’m extremely grateful that these types of events are available.

Miike Snow and The Maccabees at Music Hall of Williamsburg

Posted in Music on June 23, 2009 by cduerr

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I had to work at a show for Filter this weekend and saw Miike Snow (left) and The Maccabees (right) at the Music Hall of Williamsburg on Saturday. I was there to help Filter market Miike Snow and got in for free and had a plus one. All I had to do was put up up some posters, talk to some fans and take a few photos. Otherwise I was just there to check out the show and see how it went.

There were other bands playing, but I just saw Miike Snow and headliners, The Maccabees. Miike Snow are two Swedish dudes and one American who play kind of electronic, ambient pop music. This was either their first ever U.S. show or maybe their second or third. It was definitely not my thing, but they were good and what they did, and in general people seemed to be pretty excited about them. There definitely seemed to be a buzz going on about them, but I’m not so sure I get it. However, they seemed like perfectly nice dudes and I was happy to see them get a positive response.

The Maccabees played next. I had never listened to them either, but people were really fired up for them, especially the British chick next to us who rolled solo to the show because she loves the band so much. She guaranteed my friend and I that we wouldn’t be disappointed by them live. I was skeptical, but she turned out to be right. They were really loud, energetic, and fun to watch. The tunes were catchy and the performance was tight. I don’t know that I am going to run out and buy the album, but it was a great show to go to for free.

Stayed at Music Hall after the show and hung at the bar. There were some DJ sets and I met lots of nice folks. All in all a pretty good night.

Needle In The Grooves

Posted in Music on June 23, 2009 by cduerr

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I finally went out and bought a record player this weekend.  This has been a long time coming for me, and I’ve thought and talked about getting one for years.  I can’t really offer any excuse as to why it took me until now to get one, but whatever the reason was, I don’t care now because I have one and I couldn’t be happier.

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Along with the player, I picked up The Kills’ first record, Keep on Your Mean Side, and Johnny Cash Live at Town Hall Party 1958 on vinyl.  I had been looking for The Kills record for a while on CD and could never find it in any stores in New York, so I was thrilled to find in my random perusing on Saturday.  It is a great record by one of my favorite bands right now.  The Cash record is obviously badass and the songs sound warm and organic on vinyl.  I am very excited about this long overdue endeavor to aggrandize my music collection.  I will be making frequent trips to the record store and update with any purchases of particular interest.

Phoenix

Posted in Music on June 17, 2009 by cduerr

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I’m really digging Phoenix’s new album, Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix. I’d never really listened to them before and am usually skeptical of bands that get described as dance-rock or dance-punk, or pretty much any genre prefaced with the word “dance.” That being said, this album is catchy as hell and I can’t stop listening to it. These French dudes know something about writing hooks. They make the kind of songs that you actually like having stuck in your ahead. The whole album is pretty upbeat aside from an ambient instrumental, Love Like a Sunset Pt. 1, and none of the songs drastically disappoint.  Check out the first track and single from Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix, “Lisztomania.”

http://thefader.cachefly.net/phoenix_lisztomania.mp3″

Lucero at Big Apple BBQ

Posted in Music on June 16, 2009 by cduerr

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Saw Lucero play at the Big Apple BBQ on Saturday.  These dudes are great and there is nothing like standing outside in a park in the middle of Manhattan in the rain, drinking beer, eating ribs, and watching them play.  They played a long set with lots of new songs.  It was awesome, and they looked to be having a blast.  That kid in the picture got up and danced like a wild man in the middle of the set, and the band and crowd were equally amused.  I’ve always liked this band a lot and find them to be a refreshing alternative to the majority of the bands gushed about by Pitchfork.  So fun to see while getting drunk with your friends on Saturday afternoon.  They apparently went and played another set that night at Pianos.  Cheers to both their tenacious work and drinking ethic.  I highly approve.