Saturday, December 12, 2009

Cocktails and Counterpoints - Etudes

I have featured Cocktails and Counterpoints on the blog before, but I really dig what its organizers are doing. Bringing back salon culture (i.e. house shows) is important for all genres of music. We had an interesting discussion about how the live show has become newly significant in the age where you can see and listen to whoever you want essentially on demand. Records were always a substitute for what you couldn't see or hear. Now you can steal the record and watch 50 live shows on youtube. A concert that you actually attend is almost sacred, and what better experience than an intimate show, where you can really be moved by the music and the performers themselves.

Cocktails and Counterpoints is held monthly to bi-monthly, and you will need to swing an invite (not open to the public). If you are interested in attending one, you can email me and I will try and help you out. The theme for last nights concert was Etudes (Liszt vs Chopin). Pianists Michael Shinn and Kimball Gallagher tore it up.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Ghost of Jerry Orbach

This is from a set I saw last night at Banjo Jim's on Ave C. I hurried to turn on my camera when I realized the band was covering one of the best Elliot Smith songs ever. I only captured the second half, comprising the jam and then a final recognizable play on the melody. I kept it rolling then also for a Crowded House cover. THE Crowded House cover, I guess.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

"Phosphorescent Blues" by Brazos

Brazos @ Music Hall of Williamsburg

At the Brazos show last Thursday, after My Mind opened for a relatively empty room of 25 people, blasting sufficient volume to force me into the cave bar below, I found I was extremely impatient for the show to start. I wasn't in a particularly good mood; The weather was awful. But I still couldn't help but be excited. I have been listening to Phosphorescent Blues with a giddy smirk all week long on the subway, drawing fear from normally hard faces. Live, that feeling of friendship and kinship that you get from the record made for such a warm interaction between the band and the audience. A solemn solo beginning to the set with "Downtown Boys" was followed in rapid succession by new realizations and recognitions. When "The Observer" was performed, singer Martin Crane prefaced it with what has become its introduction, and the creation myth of the band, formed around the musical adaptation of the poem by Adrienne Rich. Phosphorescent Blues will be on my top 10 list for 2009, unless of course 9 fuckin' awesome records come out in the next 6 weeks. Listen to and love "Day Glo" below. Thanks to Shastasheen for turning me on to these guys.

"Day Glo" by Brazos download mp3 (with permission)

Brazos on MySpace
Buy Brazos' records!!

** And BTW, Crane sounds exactly like Russell Huie. I know, but he does. I think it's the same vocal influences (Wainwright, C. Martin, T. Yorke, and J. Buckley).

Whitten/Bones Project @ Bruar Falls

Here is a clip from Bill Whitten of Grand Mal and Mike Bones (of Mike Bones) paired up in one of those "project" bands. They played last night at the HOME box set release party at Bruar Falls.

Buy Grand Mal's Records!!
Buy Mike Bones' Records!!

Monday, November 9, 2009

The Swimmers Live @ Piano's

The Swimmers Live at Piano's in New York

Here is some video from The Swimmers' show at Piano's on Saturday night.

Friday, November 6, 2009

"People Are Soft" - The Swimmers

The Swimmers (band)
photo by Jenna Stoltzfus Stamm installation by Janell Olah

This week Philadelphia quartet The Swimmers release their second record, entitled "People Are Soft" on Mad Dragon Records. If you liked 2007's Fighting Trees, then you will love this record. I say that because what I loved about FT was primarily the songwriting of Steve Yutzy-Burkey, which is just as Eels-Depeche-Mode-love-child as before, but I think with a few more "hits" than last time. Though not a noticeable departure sonically, the process behind creating this group of songs was quite different. Here's what Steve had to say about it:

"This was our first shot at tracking and mixing a full record. I had previously always felt like I tried to do too much, and we needed someone else to do basic tracks and mix the record so there was a buffer there to make sure it sounded good. But this one we did PURELY to sound interesting to OURSELVES."

The Swimmers on a rooftop in Philly

Not only that, but the work was all done in The Swimmers' own studio. When I asked him why he went that route, he answered thus: "Money, control and no time limits. Mostly I wanted to get set up in a sustainable way to keep making records in the coming years, so I built a studio at our house."

The production is definitely as strong if not stronger than 2007's Fighting Trees; you can definitely hear that more attention has been paid to the tracks, that the band was willing to try new things. While my favorite track on the record reminds me a little of classic Wilco (What This World Is Coming To - below), the single "A Hundred Hearts" rests on a beautiful, delayed synth xylophone part that could be The Cure or Depeche Mode. Of course, almost no one agrees with me on either of these comparisons. But I think it is interesting.

Steve: "We always push to have each song and each record be its own thing and not limit ourselves to a specific sound or approach that has worked in the past."

The CD Release in Philly is tonight (November 6th) at Kung Fu Necktie [a new venue near Front & Girard, Fishtown/N. Liberties] with The Capitol Years. They will be here in the city tomorrow, November 7th at Piano's. Get Tickets!!

"Shelter" by The Swimmers download mp3 (from The Swimmers)

The Swimmers on MySpace

Buy The Swimmers' records!!

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

The Get Up Kids @ Blender Theater

Get Up Kids at Blender Theater

Over the weekend I saw The Get Up Kids at the Blender Theater. I think my first college girlfriend put "I'll Catch You" on a mix tape for me as sort of a resume builder. I had no idea who they were then, so the effort was lost on me. I liked it though - a bit of sweet sentiment over quite a simple piano part. I still play it occasionally, when no one is around. None of that intimacy was preserved however on Saturday night. I felt whatever small connection I had with the music wrung out of me by the greedy consciousnesses all around, battling in a competitive sing-a-long.

Get Up Kids Sold Out at Blender Theater

A friend told me that The Get Up Kids blew up circa 1998, selling something like 100,000 records. That seems hard to believe now, but I wouldn't be surprised if it was even more than that. Our being colored by the present probably forces us to underestimate retroactively to prevent ourselves from getting depressed. On a brighter note, selling out 700 cap venues is not a bad substitute for records sales, and if Something To Write Home About is being re-released as a 10 year anniversary edition simply to justify a tour, then I think the whole thing is probably a big success.

"Holiday" by The Get Up kids download mp3 (from Vagrant)

The Get Up Kids on MySpace
Buy The Get Up Kids' records!!

Monday, October 26, 2009

Telltale @ Cameo in Williamsburg

Telltale, a Brooklyn band
Telltale played Cameo October 19th

The night started slowly, PBR and whiskey tends to make things move in slow motion. Pedals, cymbals and wires were laying lifeless on the stage floor. The band before had not been kind. Telltale seemed almost like a trauma unit, moving in after a strike. I slipped into the bar to grab one last beer and then slinked back to the show room at Cameo somewhat ambivalent. The lights never went up, the room was as dark as I'd left it, but when I returned Telltale had taken the stage and were screeching out the first seconds of their brutally honest set. I was floored. Jesus & Mary Chain +The Pixies + some ethereal noise is the only way I could properly describe the assault on my senses. The drummer didn't miss a beat while switching from shaker to stick and back, while the bassist sang Kim Deal-like harmonies with the lead singer. Feedback was ringing and rain was coming down in New York. The only thing I could think was... this is a band. A real band. It's so rare today that you go to a show and see an actual living and breathing incarnation of a true band. A group that not only plays music with each other, but is a group of people that believes in their music. Telltale is just that. I watched a group of four musicians who could not only play their instruments well together, but could feed off each others' energy to create a show that was worth the time and money invested. The bassist's vocals, while precariously under-volume, never missed a step with the lead, while the rhythm section carried out a syncopated current for the lead guitar to sink wave upon wave of feedback and distorted harmony into every song. When the last note was played and the last whale of distortion was finally sated, I walked out the carwash style door into the hallway to let my ears rest. While my eyes and ears throbbed and rang I thought to myself "this is what a rockshow was supposed to sound like." I said goodbye to the band and told them that I needed to rush home to write a review. they laughed in disbelief and said they'd played better shows... I believe them. But sitting at my computer right now, I don't think I wanted a better show. Seeing this band play in real time was more than enough for my senses, and now that CMJ is just at it's onset I find myself searching for just one more band that can do what Telltale just did. Perform.

"Magazines" (live on WUSC) by Telltale download mp3 (with permission)

Telltale on MySpace

Buy Telltale's upcoming record!!

Sunday, October 25, 2009

CMJ 2009: Saturday

Sugar Plum Ferry at CMJ 2009 in New York
Sugar Plum Ferry (photo: Yuchung Chao)

CMJ Saturday is the day you can really pull the trigger, and the last two years we have had This Side Up Sounds to make it even easier for us. With The Deli magazine and a crazy-ass food website (, who I am sure helped out, The Delancey's Saturday party was even better than last year's, and more heavily attended. Apart from free beer (which we all forgive during a W recession) this day show has everything: awesome bands from the Deli's "Best 1 trillion bands of NYC" list, free food from fancy gastro-shacks, and it's great exercise, going from the upstairs to downstairs bar at each set change. Grease me and put me in the cannon. I just parked at The Delancey all day.

Drink Up Buttercup are a huge favorite everywhere I go. Everyone claims to love them, few are lying. I think they have one of the truly unique sounds of the current New York / Brooklyn scene; and they're fun to watch. If you want some free mp3's, there is a great Drink Up Buttercup Daytrotter session that you should check out.

I can't possibly write about all the bands with any sort of depth. Mostly because I am wrecked, but also because I haven't had a chance to listen enough for my opinions to crystallize. I have been trying to see We Are Country Mice for months, so I was really pleased that they were on the bill:

Annie & The Beekeepers played a show last March at one of our SXSW shows, but this was the first time I have seen her. It's sort of Allison Kraussy with sentimental lyrics. I am more of an ironic guy, but no one can argue her voice.

Cale Parks are sort of electronic and percussive, with swooning vocals over the top. Very mellow, but a nice change of pace. I am listening to their record right now, and I think it holds up.

Elizabeth & the Catapult's crowd was huge and a little loud, but I loved the song she played so much, I am going to post it anyway. It's hard to hear at times, but whatever. Normally I don't really get to enjoy a song as I am filming it, for obvious reasons, but this was an exception.

I ran out of tape for Freelance Whales (free downloads at RCRD LBL) and Local Natives, but both were fantastic, despite the sound failing to overpower the crowd noise towards the end of the show. I highly recommend them both.

After dinner I went to Local 269 for a band I was quite excited to hear called Sugar Plum Ferry. I met these guys earlier in the Festival, and I was impressed at how far they had come. If you like Explosions In The Sky, then you will love these guys. Despite playing in a somewhat smaller cap venue than they are used to back home, Local 269 was packed with an enthusiastic and appreciative crowd of local New York fans. Each of their songs is about quarter of an hour long, which proved too much for my remaining tape. I managed to get one though in its entirety. The whole set was entrancing.

Buy Drink Up Buttercup's records!!
Buy We Are Country Mice's records!!
Buy Annie And The Beekeeper's records!!
Buy The Cale Park's records!!
Buy The Elizabeth And The Catapult's records!!
Buy The Sugar Plum Ferry's records!!

Saturday, October 24, 2009

CMJ 2009: Friday

Solid Gold at the Green Label Sound CMJ party
Solid Gold

Friday started off well. Really well. And then it went south. First the good: As I was on my way to Trash Bar for The Loom, I saw Sean Lennon on the phone outside Bruar Falls. I had a little time to kill, and I love all the new Chimera Music stuff, so I just went for it. The Ladybug Transistor where about 2 songs from the end of their set. Though I didn't have time to film, I was very impressed by them. Once the set change was underway, I met a lovely guy from WRSU Rutger's Radio who filled in the gaps. Mi-Gu was the band to see. No, he didn't know how many bands Sean Lennon is actually in (we counted 3). And yes, getting a beer at Bruar Falls is difficult once hey close that iron curtain. During "Spiders," MI-GU'S normal two piece format was beefed up with Lennon and Yuka Honda sitting in.

When the band had finished, I was too late for The Loom. I was nearly late for Peasant, who slowed things down a little bit at the Paste Magazine party. As a venue name, "The Living Room" is perhaps a double entendre. I like it there, but I have never experienced less life from an audience. I know they are concentrating, but the people seem afraid to breathe. Damien himself was unaffected, but forlorn over what he considered a lackluster string of jokes between songs. When told that writing cheat-sheet lyrics on his hand was too obvious and that he should instead opt for his shoes, he replied "I've gotta find some paper shoes." For the next moment or two, he thought he had triumphed, only to realize directly that the shell was too think. Peasant is sweet, slight music, like a whisper, and Damien has a beautiful timbre. He's sort of a perfect troubadour, really. The audience was loving it quietly.

After the rain and the temperature began to fall, we had to get inside. Brooklyn Bowl had a line like the Vatican, so we were relieved when we were spared the indignity of having to queue up. Once inside, we used up our drink tickets and got ready for Solid Gold to start.

The Green Label Sound party itself was heaving, with most of the people neither bowling nor at the stage. All indications were that we were going to wait a long time for drinks and facilities, with very little return. Therefore we only stayed to see a Solid Gold's first few songs. I wanted to see some smaller bands, but the vibe of Brooklyn Bowl would follow us. First, we saw 2 unmentionably bad bands at a very crowded Public Assembly - so bad that we left our drinks. Then we were denied at Music Hall of Williamsburg (where School of Seven Bells were playing). After that we cabbed it to Cake Shop. In the dungeon we did manage to catch a few songs of Crystal Antlers, who all jumped the bathroom line and then gave everyone drink tickets (sort of classy, I thought). Cake shop was so crowded that I couldn't get my arm around my own person. An itch went unscratched, which was sort of poignant.

Buy Mi-Gu's records!!
Buy Peasant's records!!
Buy Solid Gold's records!!
Buy The Ladybug Transistor's records!!

Friday, October 23, 2009

CMJ 2009: Thursday

Emanuel and The Fear at CMJ 2009
Emanuel and The Fear

The NYCTaper 2009 CMJ Day Party was exactly what I wanted: reasonable crowd, bar stool, great bands. Bruar Falls is a festival venue for me, having been exactly twice since it opened. I have no idea what it is like on a regular weekend, but so far at Northside and now CMJ, I think it might be one of my favorites.

Dan from NYCTAPER put on a great show. My only complaint is that it started at noon! C'mon Dan! I wrote it in my schedule, with a couple of underlines, but no amount of will was going to get me to Unicycle Loves You at 12:30. I came directly from bed to Brooklyn, just in time for Blood Warrior at 3:30.

I see the guy from Blood Warrior everywhere. I had a nap just now, and I saw him in my dream. I don't know what to make of it, but I can't call anything "haunting" anymore without being punished for my past imprecision. Blood Warrior is classified cruelly as "indie folk." I loved it.

Emanuel and The Fear was on my radar when the fest started - I had heard their S/T EP while I was previewing bands. I also think Emanuel looks exactly like Gustavo Dudamel, a gross misconception made more poignant by the fact that he does indeed conduct his own mini-orchestra. "Mini" by Dudamel standards is still a whopping 11 indie rock players by any other measure; 11 distinct instruments, all kept together extremely well. A very impressive and movable wall of sound, with no mud at all. The Bruar Falls sound guys did a great job. I was discussing the pros and cons of old schoolbuses (rather than "old-school" buses) with their label rep; I am sure ours wasn't the first conversation he'd had about that.

As Emanuel finished up, I contemplated leaving Bruar Falls. Quickly, I realized that what I was doing / saying was no longer valid. I was in no condition to make any decisions. Luckily pure laziness kept me in my seat; I had no idea that Motel Motel were playing at all, let alone next. Hearing murmurs of this sparked me to squint the schedule (rather, I asked someone else to get up and look at if for me). Realizing that a sendentary afternoon at the same bar stool was all that was in the cards for me, I relaxed and felt good about being the sort of person who is always keen to accept the undebatable.

Kittens Ablaze. Fine. It's one of those band names. Everyone goes to at least one show based on a name that you want to add to the list purely for dimension. "I saw Sponge, Cake, Ebb, Hole, Kittens Ablaze, and Johnny Diamond." Confronted with this, your detractors cannot help but acknowledge indeed, what a well rounded human being you are. Kittens Ablaze also happens to be really good - I thought they were extremely good - so go and see them for that too.

Buy Blood Warrior's records!!
Buy Emanuel And The Fear's records!!
Buy Motel Motel's records!!
Buy Kittens Ablaze's records!!

CMJ 2009: Wednesday

These United States @ CMJ 2009
These United States

Day two of CMJ was 4 parts hangover, 3 parts meetings, 3 parts rock show. Basically, what I am trying to say is that I completely slacked off and only saw 3 bands. I hid away in The Living Room, nursing a Magic Hat, until the place was flooded. Confronted by familiar faces, I was more keen to exit than be sociable. So I wandered into Piano's, where These United States, who I had never actually seen before, got me feeling human again.

Then after a short break. I hit up an official CMJ show, my first. After one of the strangest opening acts, who I have already blocked out, The Boy Bathing came on with a completely new line-up, new material, new everything. There were a few unmentionables in between, but it was mostly a light day.

Buy These United States' records!!
Buy The Boy Bathing's records!!

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

CMJ 2009: Tuesday

Hospital Bombers (band) at CMJ 2009
Hospital Bombers

The first day of CMJ was exactly what I expected: a mixture of over-excited drinking and eating, to the point where I was unresponsive, with a thin glaze. What I didn't expect was how great the music was going to be right out of the gate. The Love Language, Surfer Blood, and Holiday Shores all blew me away. This is why I think CMJ is the best festival around - the quality of the bands. At SXSW you have to be so discerning. Here, you can just float around on recommendations.

The Love Language just signed to Merge, which has all of the industry kids very excited and envious. I am happy for them. You can see immediately that the songwriting is tops. I bought their S/T first record and a nice Mauve T for my lady.

Surfer Blood are unsigned, and I think this show generated some interest for them, which I suppose is the whole point of playing at 4 o'clock in the afternoon. Personally, I was very impressed; they have an extremely dynamic and upbeat style. The record is great also; I have been listening to it all morning, feeling slightly guilty that I haven't previewed enough of today's bands.

As the day was drawing to a close, I was ushered into the Holiday Shores show by a group of unrelated people, all equally enthusiastic. At that point, I was satisfied, but I am glad I forced my way into the Cake Shop dungeon. Despite shaky hands, I managed to exchange some cash for a record and video their last song:

After uploading and jotting down just a few lines, it's already time to head out and do it again!

Buy The Love Language's records!!
Buy Holiday Shores' records!!
Buy Surfer Blood's records!!

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

One year of Sitcom Serf!!!

Firstly, I think I have some splainin' to do. I have been on vacation for the last 2 months in Europe, which apart from the OFFSET festival in England, was a relatively concert-free time for me. I filmed a few shows that I went to in various London clubs, but nothing worth posting. If you checked this blog often in that time, then you must have had a low feeling, an emotional goose egg. I'm sure it was devastating.

CMJ marks the one year anniversary of Sitcom Serf. Thanks to the blog I originally wrote the CMJ 2008 article for - If it wasn't for their negligence, I would have never started my own. Since then, I have grown quite fond of the whole thing. Recording one's own experiences is incredibly valuable, the same way that a history is. Granted, the former is a microcosm, but it promotes the exact same type of understanding. I feel like I am a much more formidable person after a year of vain, solipsistic refection. Who knew? This week is my penance. I am going to flagellate myself at CMJ. Bands I have to see: Kittens Ablaze, Emanuel and The Fear, and Unicycle Loves You.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

OFFSET Festival Recap

I am a few weeks into my Summer/Fall holiday, but with all this great footage of the OFFSET festival, I had to take a break from cycling in France to un-sheath the laptop. I don't expect I will be blogging much more until I return to New York. So with this post, I will bid adieu until October and the CMJ Music Marathon:

Good Shoes

The Offset Festival was an unparalleled experience, both because I haven't properly ever seen a UK festival before, and more importantly because all of the bands I was exposed to were completely new to me. Frankly, I wasn't aware that the US and the UK were still so far apart. The trends in indie music couldn't be more different than those I left behind in Brooklyn. It seems that no one really knows about the experimental Animal Collective / Grizzly Bear / Dept. of Eagles thing, but impressively the cult of personality in performers seems to be as important as ever. The cultural differences of a UK fest were interesting: I saw some genuine teenage hooligans hurling Irish confetti at the security staff (in an effort to get some spans of this, I was actually struck on the sleeve by some errand drops of Tang). There was also real ale for sale - not just shitty corporate sponsor beer. I still have a bad taste in my mouth from that Bud Light Lime I was convinced to try at the Animal Collective show in Prospect Park.

The Chapman Family

Because of an early Sunday flight to Scotland, I was only able to attend on the Saturday (sorry Magic & Fur), but I was guided from tent to tent, pushed in by fans of each band about to go on, with promises (mostly fulfilled) that I would be in for an amazing experience. The festival organizers were kind enough to comp my ticket, so I strolled in quickly after a short train ride out from London and got stuck in. First band: a Greek group called The Berlin Brides:

After each band, the tent sort of clears out for a sweeping and the set change, so as soon as BB finished, I was herded to the main open stage area, where I was quickly convinced to hang around for The Chapman Family, an unsigned, but well-followed rock band from Stockton-on-Tees, in North England. It was one of the highest energy sets I have ever seen, although in an email afterward, singer Kingsley said that the gig was fun, but that the band is usually "much much louder." I am certain the volume of the vocals could have been louder, had Kingsley not strangled himself quite so hard with the microphone cable. Intense.

Following the Chapmans, I moved towards the bar and the surrounding tents. From that point for the next hour or so, I was literally just carried by sounds and waves of people from one tent to the next. I saw at least a half dozen bands in such quick succession that I failed to get any real info on any of them. If anyone knows the name of the band in the following video, please let me know. Clearly, I had indulged in the Bitter Ales that I covet so much from across the sea. Bitter is really the only thing we can't get in New York, that and a place that manages to assemble proper English bacon, sausages, and Heinz baked beans into a single breakfast package (Tea & Sympathy in the West Village is the only exception, but the portions are so small).

After that little spurt, I found myself back in the main stage area, where several different conversations within earshot were full of praise for Good Shoes, who were about to come on. Feeling a bit dizzy, happy at the prospect of not having to really move at all, I just hit the zoom on the camera and hung back. By this time the crowd was good-n-rowdy, and the skies were beginning to threaten. I recorded two songs before ducking into a tent.

Fortunately for me, the nearest tent was the one in which Cold Pumas were playing. I remembered them from the previewing I did a few weeks back, and I actually could sort of hum along to the songs. The songs are rather catchy, and I believe this song has about 4 lyrics.

So that was it for me. From there I flew to Scotland for another week, headed back to London, caught a ferry over to Brittany, where I am currently. Tomorrow it's off to Italy and then back to the UK. I'll officially be back in New York the week before CMJ, where I still haven't decided if we are going to do a showcase. Stay tuned.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

OFFSET Festival Preview

East London's Offset Festival 2008

While I am in sunny England (on holiday), before I put this laptop away completely, I am going to cut out to East London's Hainault Forest Country Park for this year's Offset Festival. Having grown familiar with most of the local New York names, I couldn't resist throwing myself into a completely new event, where almost none of the band names are recognizable. It feels very similar to my first SXSW, scouring the list of performers and knowing absolutely nothing about any of them. For OFFSET, I have previewed the entire line-up, listening to ALL of the bands on MySpace, which took me almost two weeks. It was a blast to do so, and as a result, I will catch some fantastic English and European acts, fresh in their infancy.

2008 Offset Festival

Here's some info about the festival from the official release: East London’s artrock and post punk Offset Festival announce more creative, exciting, and influential artists added to this year’s lineup. Joining the likes of The Horrors, The Slits, and The Futureheads on 5-6th September will be:

Damo Suzuki, Dananananaykroyd, Die! Die! Die!, S.C.U.M, The Chapman Family. Plus: Kasms, Tim Burgess (DJ set), John and Jehn, R O M A N C E, Disconcerts, Cheval Sombre, Math Head, Gyratory System, Wild Palms, Teeth of the Sea and Private Trousers.

Joining the dots between exciting new artists and their iconic influences, the boutique festival hosts over 200 artists on 7 stages. An old-fashioned fun fair, vintage clothing market hosted by the renowned Affordable Vintage Fashion Fair, and performance art, will also feature during the weekend.

Here are my picks (in no particular order):

Magic and Fur will play 2009 Offset Festival
Magic and Fur

Magic & Fur - Transparency has always been a virtue of this blog, so I must say that Magic & Fur are how I heard about this festival. I wrote a review of their single "Christine" and wanted to try and catch a show while I was abroad. This festival was the best possible way, I think.
"Do Not Toll The Bell" by Magic & Fur download mp3 (with permission)

The Rayographs will play 2009 Offset Festival
The Rayographs

The Rayographs - These three girls are the band I think I am most excited to see. They have a great sound, as evidenced by its ability to draw my GF out of the bathroom with her familiar craned posture. "Who's that?" Whenever she says that, you know it's a winner.
"Hidden Doors" by The Rayographs download mp3 (with permission)

Nullifier - I know absolutely nothing about this band. They didn't answer an email I sent them, and they don't have a website or a record. When the band responded to an open invitation to sign, posted on the One Inch Badge Records' website, the recording process began. Here is more from that website:

Nullifier are an incredibly demanding and infectious hyper-pop supergroup from Brighton consisting of Todd Jordan aka T-Jo from My Device and James Morrison aka J-Mo from The Tumbledown Estate. Padding out the rest of this insane 8-piece collective are Tom Denney (Lonely Ghosts / Help She Can't Swim), Tom Windsor (Pope Joan), Luke Hefson (Not Katies), Alex Uren (My Device), Russ Eke (My Device), and Milo Boyd (Cameltoe Comb Over).

Spectrals will play the 2009 Offset Festival

Spectrals - I know nothing at all about Spectrals, other than the music on MySpace has that badass sixties dirt sound that we all love. It's something a lot of people are doing, sure, but this version of it made me perk up an inch higher than the rest.

And then there are the famous bands that I want to see:

Bearsuit, Metronomy and Damo Suzuki. As all of these bands have adequate press, I don't think I need to go on-and-on about any of them. I hate to penalize bands for being successful, but that's the way it goes. I will say that Damo Suzuki is the most likely to end up the subject of a documentary someday, Metronomy were one of the festival favorites last year, and Bearsuit's single "Foxy Boxer" drew more LALA followers than any other song I have ever previewed on the blog. It should be a good weekend with a cool 55 degrees. Last minute flight deals from New York are not bad. You have 48 hours, though. You had better get a move on.

Buy Magic and Fur's Records!!
Join the Too Pure Singles Club!!
Buy Spectrals' Records!!
Buy The Rayographs' Records!!
Buy Nullifier's Records!!
Buy Tickets to the OFFSET FESTIVAL