Sunday, September 29, 2013

The Sonic Parthenon Show – Episode 94: “New Beginnings and Other Clichés to Symbolize Playing New Songs in the Context of Other Things Coming to an End”

The Sonic Parthenon Show – Episode 94: “New Beginnings and Other Clichés to Symbolize Playing New Songs in the Context of Other Things Coming to an End” 

“Crazy for You” by the Dirtbombs

Set 1
“Mind Your Manners” by Pearl Jam
“Everything” by Nine Inch Nails
“Oh Come On” by the Julie Ruin
“FOH” by Superchunk
“Walk Us Uptown” by Elvis Costello & the Roots

Set 2
“Star Dream Girl” by David Lynch
“Get Lucky (featuring Pharell Williams)” by Daft Punk
“Jelly Babies” by Hot Chip
“Country Calling” by Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros
“The Dream’s in the Ditch” by Deer Tick

Set 3
“Alive” by Empire of the Sun
“Section 35 (Hold Yourself Up)” by the Polyphonic Spree
“Shattered Me” by Bass Drum of Death
“Swimming with Sharks” by the Shivas
“My Dying Days” by Bad Cop

Set 4
“City Summer Blues” by Pokey LaFarge
“Eres Tu” by Carla Morrison
“Find a Way” by Elastic Bond
“Lowlands” by the Stranglers
“Incredibly Still” by Sombear

Set 5
“Kisser” by Step Rockets”
“Endless” by Happy Hollows
“Head On” by Man Man
“#88” by Lo-Fang
“GMF” by John Grant

“Midnight Stains” by Livids

The Sonic Parthenon Playlist: Summer 2013

Neon Neon - "Mid Century Modern Nightmare"
Oblivians - "Run for Cover"
Pixies - "BagBoy"
Step Rockets - "Kisser"
Thee Oh Sees - "I Come From the Mountain"
David Lynch - "Star Dream Girl"
Front Bottoms - "Au Revoir"
Surfer Blood - "Weird Shapes"
Empire of the Sun - "Alive"
Cecile McLoren Savant - "St. Louis Girl"
Cali Giraffes - "All My Life"
Eleanor Friedburger - "Stare at the Sun"
Carla Morrison - "Eres Tu"
Daft Punk - "Get Lucky"
Edward Sharpe & the Magnetic Zeros - "Country Calling"
Man Man - "Head On"
Elastic Bond - "Find a Way"
Pokey LaFarge - "City Summer Blues"
Bass Drum of Death - "Shattered Me"
The Shivas - "Swimming with Sharks"
Bad Cop - "My Dying Days"
Sombear - "Incredibly Still"
The Stranglers - "Lowlands"
Deer Tick - "The Dream's in the Ditch"
Don Cavalli - "Me and My Baby"
John Grant - "GMF"
Cascadia '10 - "The Secret is Out"
Hot Chip - "Jelly Babies"
Lo-Fang - "#88"

The Dirtbombs - Ooey Gooey Chewy Ka-Blooey!
Superchunk - I Hate Music

Livids - everything they've recorded. Seriously.

Saturday, September 28, 2013

Superchunk @ Bowery Ballroom

Superchunk; Spider Bags
@ Bowery Ballroom
New York, NY - September 27, 2013

Despite missing the presence of Laura Ballance, Superchunk stormed the stage of the Bowery Ballroom with a whiplash set of favorites like the all-time-one-for-the-ages "Skip Steps 1 & 3", recent neo-classic "Digging for Something" and new ones from I Hate Music (including the perfect triumph of "FOH" and the fun "Me & You & Mittoo"). Jason Narducy ably filled in for Ms. Ballance, and perhaps because of the line-up was Bob Mould's backing-band there was something of a full throttled rush to the affair, but then again Superchunk is always like this. Mac bounced every which way, the only way he can, and Jim and Jon were right there with him.

Say, Spider Bags are pretty good. A little rockabilly, a little surf, a little machine-gun guitar, a lot of backwoods rock too. They had me boppin' for sure.

Monday, September 23, 2013

Metallica @ Yankee Stadium

@ Yankee Stadium
Bronx, NY - September 22, 2013

Listen, as I don't expect to ever purposely attend a Metallica concert, this is as much as is ever going to count. So I went to a baseball game see, it was a big deal - it was the formal farewell ceremony to the long time "closer" (that's a type of pitcher) to the New York Yankees, a club for which I have some affable affections, a nice Panamanian chap named Mariano Rivera. Well the thing is, because he's the most reliable player to ever play the game of baseball, in that his appearance almost assuredly meant the game was going to end in a matter of moments and in victory for his side, the Yankee Stadium PA people always found it fun and cool to play Metallica's song "Enter Sandman" over the PA system as Mr. Rivera strode across the outfield to the pitcher's mound. Despite the fact that "Mo" really has no interest or care for Heavy Metal, he has gladly let the song be associated with his appearances. And he had no problem at the ceremony being given an honorary amp from the band, and an electric guitar made by Kirk Hammett as a gift from the San Francisco Giants and signed by Willie Mays, another great and famous one of these baseball players.

So yeah before that the band took to a stage to play "Enter Sandman" live while Mariano went to make his big speech.

Then after that I got to see Bernie Williams, Paul O'Neill, Jorge Posada...

It was all very nice.

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Elvis Costello and the Roots @ Brooklyn Bowl

Elvis Costello and the Roots
@ Brooklyn Bowl
Brooklyn, NY - September 17, 2013

On the eve of the release of their collaborative record, Wise Up Ghost, Elvis Costello and members of the Roots got together to try the songs out live in a perfectly appropriate place: a club. And despite the occasional clinks of bowling balls hitting pins, it remained the perfectly appropriate place. Elvis sure thought it was neat.

Costello and the Roots may have very well been made for each other. By no means a ridiculous or necessarily surprising collaboration, it may best be thought of as a rock n roll wolf and a hip hop wolf circling each other not out of hostility but the exact opposite, the only question being how is it gonna sound?

It sounds just fine. It sounds exactly like - because it exactly is - the amber-preserved voice of a living legend, retaining all the education of doing rock, punk, blues, Jazz, country, (and the discipline of his opera record) smacked right into a funk jam by ace professionals. Finally, Elvis got the funk. A sexed up funk, too. This was a spicy hot show because the record appears to be just that.

There were also a balladeer moment (of course, it's Elvis) courtesy of a country duet with Diane Birch and there was plenty of international infusion coming through with La Marisoul as well as through a couple of tunes you might know called "Watching the Detectives" and "(I Don't Want to Go to) Chelsea".

And as part of the encore, just in case you forgot what's the ultimate source vibe of this whole thing, you got "Pump It Up". Because it's all rock and roll. From ?uestlove's Tribe Called Quest-as-law-firm t-shirt to Costello's latest hat. And oh yeah because of all the music. 

Sunday, September 15, 2013

The Sonic Parthenon Show – Episode 93: “Celebrating an Exit Out of the Solar System”

The Sonic Parthenon Show – Episode 93: “Celebrating an Exit Out of the Solar System”

(Radio signal image of Voyager 1 from interstellar space)

“Also Sprach Zarathustra” by Richard Strauss
“Space Oddity” by David Bowie

Set 1
“Space Truckin’” by Deep Purple
“Man on the Moon” by Grinderman
“Vixens in Space” by the Dirtbombs
“Astral Man” by the Gore Gore Girls

Set 2
“Why Is It Always This Way?” by the Ramones
“What’s My Name” by the Clash
“E.M.I” by the Sex Pistols
“Don’t Worry About the Government” by Talking Heads
“Waiting for the End of the World” by Elvis Costello
“I Don’t Wanna” by Sham 69

Set 3
 “Fire on the Moon” by the BellRays
“Teenagers from Mars” by the Misfits
“Pluto” by Clare & the Reasons
“Planet Health” by Chairlift
“Another Girl, Another Planet” by the Only Ones

Set 4
“Beep! Beep!” by Louis Prima
“Waiting for the UFO’s” by Graham Parker
“Alien Visitors” by Man or Astro-Man ?
“(You Must Fight to Live) on the Planet of the Apes” by the Mummies
“Mean Green Mother from Outer Space” by the Cast of the Little Shop of Horrors

Set 5
“Cosmic Thing” by the B-52’s
“Star Dust” by Louis Armstrong
“I Love the Stars” by the Orion Experience
"We Are All Made of Stars" by Moby
“Across the Universe” by the Beatles

“Rock and Roll Babe” by Cocktail Slippers

Saturday, September 14, 2013

The Dirtbombs @ Shinola Block Party

The Dirtbombs
@ Shinola Block Party - Outside 177 Franklin Street
New York, NY - September 14, 2013

Hard to imagine but it's been just over 9 years since I first saw the Dirtbombs on a Saturday night at the Bowery Ballroom. So we're heading for a full decade of this band being as something more or less simply described as my favorite band in the world. I couldn't always keep up the fandom at a fever pitch (a healthy mental decision to be fair to band and myself alike) and other bands of the present and the past have taken a turn in the spotlight of number 1 on the list of frequently played, but it has always come back to this Detroit (post-Detroit?) band. Even when the frequency of shows reduced, or even if I actually found a record not to my personal tastes (Party Store), they've still been IT to me. My brain has taken on all comers, musically speaking, but look who still find themselves at the top.

And in just a matter of days, the next record will be released. Ooey Gooey Chewy Ka-Blooey! will be the next station on this locomotive ride of genres - the bubblegum pop record much discussed for years. I'd like to tell you how it sounds live but I can't - not a single song from it was played at this block party performance put on for a Detroit-based establishment opening in Tribeca. Instead it was the ramble of "hits" from most of the previous discography, songs I've written about too many times to count on this site and have played on my fake radio show. There was also what sounded like a few moments of "Wheatland".

As the stretches of time between performances have grown, and as I've gone from the guy who wears the band shirt to the gig (Jeeeesus) to the guy who danced a little too crazy to the point of getting actual whiplash one night in Cleveland to the guy who did the My Space page for a period of time when such a thing actually helped get things done to the guy who followed the band's tour of the Northeast but was feeling too old and tired at 26 to see any of those shows up front (except to allow for this) to the guy who just shows up when they play and after a rough week at the office dances a little too crazy once again but only to remind myself of the vigor of the old days (and carefully avoiding the whiplash this time) and also hey, sometimes the wife will come with and get a glimpse of how it was before she met me (and lord have mercy perish the thought even contemplating what progeny will think of this music), I have but one thought left on my favorite band:

Get it while you can.

Sunday, September 08, 2013

The Sonic Parthenon Show – Episode 92: “The Voyager 3 Project: Pre-Rock”

The Sonic Parthenon Show – Episode 92: “The Voyager 3 Project: Pre-Rock” 

“Eine Kleine Nachtmusik” by Mozart

Set 1
“Ode to Joy, from Symphony No. 9” by Beethoven
“We Shall Sail the Ocean Blue” from Gilbert and Sullivan’s HMS Pinafore by D'Oyly Carte Opera Company
“Breakaway” by Sidney Stripling

Set 2
“Alexander’s Ragtime Band” by Bessie Smith
“When the Saints Go Marching In” by Louis Armstrong
“Sing, Sing, Sing” by Benny Goodman
“All of Me” by Frank Sinatra
“Them There Eyes” by Billie Holiday

Set 3
“House of the Rising Sun” by Woody Guthrie
“Don’t Lie Buddy” by Lead Belly and Josh White
“John Henry” by Bill Cornett
“Big Rock Candy Mountain” by Harry McClintock
“Who Walks in When I Walk Out” by Bob Wills & His Texas Playboys

Set 4
“Choo Choo Ch’Boogie” by Louis Jordan
“You’ve Been Mistreating Me” by Big Bill Broonzy
“One Monkey Don’t Stop No Show” by Stick McGhee

Set 5
“Dry Spell Blues” by Son House
“Shave ‘Em Dry Blues” by Ma Rainey
“Baby Please Don’t Go” by Lightnin’ Hopkins
“Big Ten-Inch Record” by Moose Jackson with Tiny Bradshaw’s Orchestra

“Shake Rattle n Roll” by Big Joe Turner

(there's some silence following the first set, sorry about that)

Sunday, September 01, 2013

The Sonic Parthenon Show – Episode 91: “Bands A-Z, Vol. 3”

The Sonic Parthenon Show – Episode 91: “Bands A-Z, Vol. 3”

“Tell Me (What’s On Your Mind)” by the Allah-las

Set 1
“Table Talk” by the Birthday Suits
“Time Has Come Today” by the Chambers Brothers
“Get Lucky” by Daft Punk (featuring Pharell Williams)
“Miss Alissa” by Eagles of Death Metal

Set 2
“Lions” by the Features
“Strict Machine” by Goldfrapp
“So So Happy Making” by Hatcham Social
“Shining” by Islands

Set 3
“Living in the Past” by Jethro Tull
“Living on a Thin Line” by the Kinks
“Marlene” by Lightspeed Champion
“Taxidermist Surf” by Man or Astro-Man?

Set 4
“Graceless” by the National
“Your Love” by the Outfield
“Being Gone” by the Poison Control Center
“Thing Called Love” by Queen

Set 5
“Boy” by Ra Ra Riot
“Wicked Blood” by Sea Wolf
“Every Little Bit Hurts” by Title Tracks
“Here’s to Now” by Ugly Casanova

Set 6
“Rose City” by Viva Voce
“What Did My Lover Say? (It Always Had to Be This Way) by Wolf Parade
“Little Fool” by the XYZ Affair
“Ambling Alp” by Yeasayer

“Zuton Fever” by the Zutons