October 28, 2011

Your Halloween Weekend as a One-Sided Conversation


We Wrote the Book on Connectors as Beastie Boys ::: photo by Josh Lovseth

Some traditions die hard should have never been started. Last year I gave you a Halloween weekend preview that was basically a third party eavesdropping on a hipster having a conversation on his cellular phone. This year will be a different. You will hear from a great white shark that has political ambitions that may involve the Oval Office…

Yes, you read that correctly.

The object of man’s darkest water related fears will give a political speech directly related to the blessed conundrum of having too much music to see and only one pair of eyes to experience it with. You come to Sound on the Sound for respectable writing and you get this!?! It’s Halloween, my parents aren’t around and I can do what I want!

[Scene shows a large fish tank at the entrance of Wild Waves. The tank has a spiderweb of microphones hanging above it, the audio machinery is hoping to capture the sentences of this politically savvy deep sea predator. The Sound on the Sound camera pans around the parking lot and spots an abundance of media trucks with its lens. Suddenly the shark stops "pacing" the tank, anchors itself in one place and begins to speak.] Mr. White: Some of you may wonder why I have called this press conference all of you here today and I’m here to answer the question that I’m assuming is on your human mind. I’m here to make a speech that addresses the issues.

[Mr. White stops speaking and does a methodical lap around the tank.]

Mr. White: I’m a shark, when it comes to media relations I am mostly ignorant. Is it proper to call a press conference in order to make a speech? I’m really not sure. All I know is third party candidates don’t have the luxury of debates leading up to primaries and presenting State of the Union addresses to a doting nation. This event is actually paid for by “Sharks Against Campaigns to Give Human Rights to Orcas.” PETA is a fascist organization that does not give equal consideration to sharks. My contentious relationship with that agency is neither here or nor there. Like I said I’m here to talk about the issues.

[Mr. White stops to swim to the surface and to see if there are any PETA protesters in attendance.]

Mr. White: This weekend is Halloween weekend. Many of the events that are taking place and are related to the every day lives of the voters. If you did not realize this, now you do. If you are below the age of 18 I suggest you turn your Ipod off and tune in, shit is about to get real even though you are not old enough to vote. For instance, the Black Lodge is having a benefit show tonight that features Numb and Mercy Ties. I tell you this because I am pro-small business and independent industry. The Black Lodge has done many a service for being a great DIY venue that routinely has all ages shows. If something were to happen to this place, what would you do? Where would you go? You tell me you’d hang out in Belltown but I don’t believe you.  Sharks may not be chimpanzees but we are not dinosaurs either. Literally. Don’t let those other two political parties tell you they are for all-ages shows when I think their record speaks for itself. They are for money and that’s it. Personally I don’t care about monetary symbols, I care about blood in the water. That is my priority and that my friends, is a selfish agenda you can trust.

[Mr. White stops speaking to detect if there is indeed blood in the water.]

Mr. White: Did you see that? I already fulfilled a campaign promise. Also happening tonight is the ten year anniversary show of Glenn or Glennda? happening at the Croc. Individuals like myself that are big-time players in political shuffleboard can appreciate the innovate legacy that the aforementioned act has crafted over the past decade. They took an old idea and twisted gender-bended it into their own creation. They tested the market and passed with flying colors. People want to talk about raising taxes and job creation, what about shifting chromosomes in order to achieve annual entertainment for nostalgic punk rockers? Glenn or Glennda can’t resign just yet, they are a pillar of the ghost and goblin community. I propose another term. I also believe that Strong Killings and Steel Tigers of Death second that notion by offering their support for this anniversary engagement.

[The affable great white stops to contemplate what he meant look like as a cross-dressing member of the Misfits. These are the kind of thoughts that go through politicians minds during media events. Duh.]

Read the Rest of Phil Mr. White’s Halloween recommendations (more…)

May 13, 2011

Friday The 13th Is Your Lucky Day


Strong Killings ::: photo by Josh Lovseth

Triskaidekaphobia [tris-kahy-dek-uh-foh-bee-uh, tris-kuh-] noun – fear or phobia of the number 13.

I’m willing to bet the farm every single one of our Sound on the Sound readers suffer from the aforementioned psychological ailment. Today, for whatever reason it is, you didn’t want to leave the safety of your bed. Your sheets and down-comforters had you secluded from the fickle bitch that is misfortune. Lady Luck is overseas, having no trouble finding a job in Germany’s booming economy. You are here (wherever that is) waiting for tomorrow to come. You are a member of the Knights Templar and I am Philip IV of France, gleefully stomping on the panic button. I have no problem holding a grudge over the course of centuries.

Because the number 13 has you shaking-in-your-boots, afraid to take a step in any direction, I am going to recommend a show for you based on any irrational real-life fears that might actually be realized today:

Scenario: So, you’re tired of running into that “Let’s talk about current events that I heard on public radio because I want to show you I’m informed, oops, did I say informed? I meant mildly attractive, meaning you are…can I have your email?” guy on the 71 in the mornings and evenings. It does not matter where you sit, he seems to have your scent. If only you could eliminate your own pheromones. You’re thinking about leaving work early in order to avoid this encounter but you’re afraid your boss will chafe over your decision. You can’t stay late either, it’s against your religion. It’s Friday the 13th, instead of talking about Cuba’s flirtation with economic changes, this guy might actually beat you to death with a Tom Robbins hardback novel….

Show: Captain Ahab, Footwork and Stickers at Cairo

While there’s nothing wrong with talking about current events in a public setting, you must realize that you are a Seattlite and the thought of talking to strangers makes you extremely uncomfortable. Use your intelligence to taxi to work in the morning and make an informed decision to attend a show at Cairo later this evening.

When you hear the term “footwork,” you think of athleticism or that one scene in Flashdance where what’s-her-face is really getting it. The band Footwork are maniacs in a totally different way. They kicked Charlie Tuna out of his living space in order to record the vocals in there. The bass player probably plays out of a nice Ampeg. Have you ever dislocated an elbow or kneecap? That’s what the guitar and drums sound like, disjointed. Footwork, you are well-liked because you’re weird. Don’t ever change. Your ideas are reminiscent of Bear vs. Shark, only instead of sucking on pop sensibilities, you put Dramamine in your Pabst Blue Ribbon. Take it easy fellas. If you’ve ever owned a record that was released by Kill Rock Stars (especially older ones) then you might like Stickers. Captain Ahab has written songs that have appeared on television shows that you may like (The Office [inferior American version] and Caprica). Granted, you’ll have to deal with you-know-who on your Monday morning commute, the weekend should give you enough time to find a used bike online.

Scenario: Crap. It’s your bi-annual office party again. Your boss is as sadistic as a child that likes to burn insects with a magnifying glass. Why would she hold a party on Friday the 13th? She doesn’t give any of you any valid reasons. The last time your office had a party you ended up locked in one of the janitor’s closets overnight, glitter ended up staining your person for two months and you looked like one of the Lunachicks for the entire weekend without knowing. This scenario was totally unfortunate, you just like to party…

Show: Kinksi, Broken Water, Strong Killings and Mopper at the Comet.

Avoid the office party, you don’t want to soil your reputation with your co-workers more than you already did approximately six months ago. This does not mean you are not allowed to have a good time at a location far removed from that which pays your bills. Let’s be honest, you know next to nothing about Kinski and Broken Water. You just heard both bands for the first time this week. From what little you do know, Kinski is a rock and roll band (getting real specific here). Broken Water is sometimes spooky and jangly, while at other times sounding like a child throwing a temper tantrum. Broken Water is just another reason why you’re beginning to think that something special has been happening in Olympia for quite some time and you have been mostly unaware of it. Inexcusable, is there a possible conspiracy looming? Olympians, why are you keeping good music from us? Then there’s Strong Killings, need anyone say more? One of the best bands currently operating in the city of Seattle. Their new album comes out next month and it promises to be one of the best of the year. This show is being presented by Seismic Sound and Seattle Rock Guy. Don’t forget to thank them before you head home.

Scenario: So, you’ve been a terrible boyfriend lately. Inattentive. Undemonstrative. Unintelligent. If it’s a negative adjective, it’s a word that likely describes you. To make things worse your girlfriend butt-dialed you the other night while something “funny” was going on. Either she’s suddenly visiting the same porn sites that you are or she was definitely “having relations” with a familiar voice on the other end. You hope it’s not your bass player Mike pray that it’s someone that you don’t know. Afraid to deal with the potential disintegration of your relationship and your ambitions as a musician, you need to find refuge…

Show: The Raveonettes at Neumo’s

The Raveonettes are like musical Percocet, they will take your pain away. You’re either familiar with the lush dreamscapes they create or you’re someone that just logged online for the first time. If the latter is the case, greetings! If you’re afraid to deal with your problems, head to Neumos, close your eyes and let the music take you to a place where Willy Wonka is your interior decorator, Spike Jonze is your personal chef and your dining partner is Thierry Mugler. It might be a weird place, but at least it’s interesting and much more enjoyable than the alternative. Really Angela, the bass player?!?!

Scenario: Everyone thinks you’re this quiet, stay at home mother that enjoys gardening whenever it’s sunny out. The neighbors should know that it’s never fucking sunny in Seattle you keep several dark secrets next to your hand shears. No, I’m not talking about the shrunken skull of a Somali pirate that you bought off Craigslist for dirt cheap. I’m talking about that second iPad that you own, the one you do all your secret Day Trading on. Your quaint family life is about to experience some turbulence. Never again will you do a whole bottle of your child’s Ritalin and invest your families life savings in Skechers, because you thought Joe Montana looked cute in that TV commercial. It’s only a matter of time (today!) before someone (your tightwad husband!) notices that something has gone awry financially (loses his mind!).  Fresh out of Ritalin, Carlton cigarettes and fertilizer, you need a miracle that not even one of Martha Stewart’s “grey ladies” can provide…

Show: Melvins at the Crocodile

You reach out to Martha Stewart via Twitter but you get no response. You decide that the only way you can muster the strength to fake your death and move to Italy save your family is to see the Melvins play three of their albums in one night. King Buzzo does not hold the secrets to any get-rich-quick schemes, but he does know the riff to “Hooch” and this makes you happy. You haven’t felt happiness in a while, you’re hoping this unfamiliar feeling is the beginning better days to come.

Gentle readers, party safe. Avoid all black cats, ladders, white and/or yellow lighters, people holding handmade signs saying “You can’t trust me,” sleepover camps, guys wearing hockey masks not named Casey Jones etc.