Hello again friends, welcome to another cold ass week in hell. You think there’s an end in sight to Old Dude Winter’s icy grip around your numbed extremities? Sorry, nope. At least not for the foreseeable future. But if you’re nothing but a whippersnapper now and still planning to live a good long life–first of all, good luck with that. But secondly chill out on this deep freeze, relatively speaking it’s only temporary. Hope you caught that New York City Panel on Climate Change report that dropped like a bomb (rather bombogenesis, remember that scare?) earlier this week, because you’re gonna need it. The report detailed that chya, just as we suspected before the Big Freeze of 2k15, things are about to start heating up. Which means that, despite the spew coming from climate “experts” trying to tell you otherwise, it’s getting hot in here. End times y’all, boom. Time to boogie.
Past Present Past Future
Dan Deacon, Eaters
Wednesday February 25th, 8 pm at Rough Trade: $15 in advance, $20 day of
Eatersssss yay I love these guys. I’m not lying at all when I say I listened to their self-titled album three times in a row last night. Not because I wasn’t paying attention, but because it was the right thing to do. I live in the moment, for the moment only. That’s why I can’t think of a more unlikely stage partner than Dan Deacon, but whatever. Think of this show as an educational opportunity.
The contrast between these acts really speaks to the here-and-now of music versus what was happening a decade ago, which isn’t to say Dan Deacon is a washed up whatever. He’s prolific and talented, but with an eye towards the past to be sure. I could easily confuse his latest album, Gliss Riffer for whatever I was listening to while working at a liquor store in college a few years ago–his sound is somehow rife with that carefree, ebullient but reckless period of my life. Listening to stuff with that particular quality from that era with the same spirit I did back then, now seems sort of silly. But clearly I’m in the minority. Plenty of people can still hang with that mid aughts sound and I can’t blame them for it.
Eaters, on the other hand, are more akin to nowness (this obsession with post-punk, dark wave, minimalism, noise, etc.) while somehow managing to avoid being pigeonholed as just-another-80’s-sounding-band or another Joy Division imitator. Unlike many of the bands we’re seeing make music in this vein, Eaters are putting their own twist on things rather than simply relying on nostalgia.
Howl At The Moon
Lugweight, Pill, Fuck Fuck
Saturday February 28th, 9 pm at Bohemian Grove
Hell yeah drone music. Hell no drones. Show your support for underground noise and your disdain for American foreign policy all at once. This weekend at Bohemian Grove there’s a whole lotta evil going down, but count your lucky stars that all of it’s sonic and none of it murderous. At least that’s what we’re being led to believe. Lugweight will bring in the heavy weight of downright brain burbling drone.
Then there’s Pill, which tbh I’ve never been able to figure out what the hell it is they do, but judging by their website it’s something netty and hip. Local rock band makes headlines, Fuck Fuck will lighten the mood a bit. So throw on a beanie and a pair of sunglasses and prepare to get your zombie bob on. Just playin’ guys, this is my preferred form of physical expression as well. See you there.
Visions of My Youth
Shapes on Tape, Super FM, Youth Worship, Young Guts
Monday March 2nd, 8 pm at Palisades: $5
LOL don’t hate me for saying this but, Shapes on Tape sounds a lot like U2. No, not now U2, but U2 back before Bono totally lost his shit and was like licking George Bush’s palms or something. Back when they were like a real band. Sorry Bono, me and everyone else on the planet really appreciate your great philanthropic work and all but, dude, it’s time to put down the guitar. God has been telling you this for quite some time now. Move over and let Shapes on Tape seize the thrown.
And don’t just swing by this show for the pop, stay for the weird lo-fi punk from Super FM. If Ty Segall and the Counter Intuits had a sweaty, mutual rub dub and birthed a love bb, said spawn would warble something like Super FM. Young Guts are just as angsty but they’ve got something a little more angular going on. Yeah, the lead singer does this bizarre put-on, side mouth stammering reminiscent of early aughts butt rock, but somehow, oddly it sticks the landing in this case.
And wait, is Youth Worship actually the Offspring? Or am I mishearing? Listening to “Eternal Scene” instantly catapulted me back to the 3rd grade when I fell in love deeply and forever with the boy who brought Americana in for the choir version of show-and-tell. I’ll never forget the music teacher’s face when he dropped that CD in the boom box.
Detroit Strikes Back
PC Worship, Turn To Crime, Beech Creeps
Thursday February 26th, 8 pm at Shea Stadium: $8
Our favorite experimental noise punks and seemingly tireless live showsmen, PC Worship are headlining another must-see show. They’ve been involved in a lot of those recently–and I’m not gonna lie, I sing their praises quite a bit. But even if you’ve taken my word for it before and shelled out precious piggy bank pennies to see em play, consider cracking that ungrateful little swine and stealing away to go see Turn To Crime, the second Detroit band to roll into town in the past few days that I know and love (see also: the Intended). Fronted by Derek Stanton (formerly of now defunct Stooges revivalists, Awesome Color), this band finds their stride in catchy, heartfelt garage prose.
Free Stuff, Sort Of
Tuesday February 24th, 6:30 pm at Rough Trade: $ entry with purchase of record,
Hey Screaming Females are playing at Knitting Factory, did you hear? Of course you did. Coz we already told you and we know you’re listening, carefully. But maybe you’re not into this whole money thing, this silly rat race we call consumerism. Well have we got a show for you– Screaming Females are playing a totally 100 percent, free as hell show at Rough Trade. Wait, wait. Sorry you do have to buy something at Rough Trade in order to hear the FREE tunes, but that something is something you can keep forever and ever–the band’s new album Rose Mountain, which the SF’s will also be playing in its entirety at the show. Kinda weird? Maybe! Would you rather hear an original set list? Probably! Who comes up with these things anyway? Hell if we know. Well, at least you get a sweet record out of this deal.
Swans, Xylouris White
Thursday February 26th, 8 pm at the Bowery Ballroom, $35
Guys, Swans are back. They put on an amazing show at Warsaw last December along with Liturgy, so amazing that I felt remarkably drained after the show. Gotta love that band. It’s truly impressive how widely appealing they are despite their brutal sound. And it’s not just an act–Michael Gira, the musical force to be reckoned with that he is, is truly a hard ass.
While most people stood in utter stillness and awe of Gira and his band’s presence, rhythmically swaying at the absolute most, some young bucks decided it was time to mosh. As confounding as this was, it was only a tiny burble of movement in a very calm sea of people at the high school gymnasium-like venue. But Gira ain’t got time for that. He paused from a song to jut his finger out toward the offending parties, and with one swift gesture and a bellowing “STOP!” the movers were utterly still. Normally I’d be all like, let the people do what feels good, but in the case of Swans, their music has this untouchable sacred quality that shouldn’t be sullied by disruptive gyrating, as geriatric as that sounds.
Yes, Gira can be sort of a terrifying presence, but play by the rules and you won’t get burned.
What The Internet Sounds Like
ONWE, Johnny Aries, Caladan
Thursday February 26th, 7 pm at Palisades: $10
This ironic post-Internet pop trio are really good at social media, and I mean really, really good. Frontman David Welles managed to catch the eye of Impose Magazine when he courted, like, everyone living in or around Bushwick or with lose ties to someone living or playing in the hippest neighborhood everrrrrr. Welles launched a full-scale hype assault and record label (Capitalist Records–get it?) that, shall we say, is something of a comment on how the music bizz and NYC music scene function these days as well as the grossness of net-fueled narcissism (see: “Unpaid Internship“).
He’s made a lot of people angry/confused in the process by essentially calling attention to how most bands get noticed these days– via rapid fire social media campaigns, paying PR machines to produce an endless stream of vapid content, and crafting Tumblr-ready personas. All this is socially, artistically, politically interesting stuff when you think about it, which is exactly what ONWE is trying to inspire.
But the real question is, does ONWE sound good? Yes, thankfully. Welles is a talented guitarist and magnetic stage presence, and he’s courted two Tumblr-ready babes that (thankfully) are just as good at playing their instruments as they are at doing their eye makeup if not better.
Context Be Damned
Ariel Pink, Jack Name
Wednesday February 25th, 8 pm at Terminal 5: $30
Just thinking about this venue gives me a panic attack, but I’m confident all of that agoraphobia-related anxiety will be diffused by Ariel Pink’s chill wave vibes at this show. Though it’s hard to admit we still love the guy’s music, despite the fact he can be kind of a whiney baby jerk (at least according to what we know from the media machine and what our own interviewees tell us). We guess it’s the old case of whether or not you can take the artist out of the art, or leave the artist with his or her art and stomach it despite the sometimes nauseous consequences.