Friday, August 27, 2010

Song of the Week (Ween - Trandermal Celebration)

This week's song of the week is called "Transdermal Celebration". I saw this video when I was in Australia, and I thought it was the raddest video of all time.

Ween gets the nod this week because they are the house of blues! Ween is admittedly a strange band. From "Ocean Man" to "Voodoo Lady", these guys have successfully (in this guy's opinion) crossed and bended the genres of pop, prog rock, broadway showtunes, and as much as I hate to admit it, schlock rock. Although the broader listening public has largely overlooked the awesomeness of Ween. I'm baffled. What does Katy Perry have that Dean and Gene Ween don't (aside from the obvious talent...)?

Exhibit A: "Bananas and Blow"
Disclaimer: I don't endorse the use of blow... I mean, I like Led Zeppelin, but I don't condone the use of black the way, should really stop using black magic.
This little number is about as catchy a pop song as I've ever heard:
"Bananas & Blow (oh - oh), Bananas & Blow
Stuck in my cabana, living on Bananas & Blow"

Personally, I've always wanted to rhyme banana and cabana. Stuck in your cabana indeed Messrs Ween.

Exhibit B: "Roses are Free"
"Eat plenty of lasagna 'til you know that you've had your fill
Resist all the urges that make you want to go out and kill"

One word: Genius

I mean seriously...who has urges to go out and kill? That's crazy! You would be crazy to have those thoughts! Unless that person was your arch-nemesis...I'm just playin'...not really.

Exhibit C: "Transdermal Celebration"
Just watch the's rad.

If anyone wants to go to the show tonight, holler. Buenos Tardes Amigos.

Hope you Dig,

Friday, August 20, 2010

Song of the Week (Arcade Fire - Suburbs)

It's official: the 2010 Concert Calendar is en fuego. Why couldn't this have happened over the Summer? Is there some sort of conspiracy, perpetrated by the likes of Ticketmaster or Live Nation, that caused this to happen? Many a Thursday night was spent at home...longing for some sort of live music to stem the tide. Don't get me wrong...there were bright spots, but the Summer calendar lacked coherence and/or consistency.

That, my friends, has changed in a big way. I just want to get this out there: I in no way endorse all of the bands on this list, but some of you might, so I narrowed it down a bit...but not too much:

Monday, August 23 – Heart @ House of Blues
Tuesday, August 24 – Billy Idol
Thursday, August 26 – Meat Loaf @ House of Blues
Thursday, August 26 – Hot Hot Heat @ The Loft
Friday, August 27 – Ween @ House of Blues
Saturday, September 4 – John Mayer @ Center
Thursday, September 9 – The Wailers @ Trees
Saturday, September 11 – Dave Matthews Band @ Center
Tuesday, September 14 – Crystal Castles @ House of Blues
Sunday, September 19 – The Pixies @ Verizon Theater
Tuesday, September 21 – Tom Petty and ZZ Top @ Center
Wednesday, September 22 – O.A.R. @ House of Blues
Thursday, September 23 – Kings of Leon @ Center
Thursday, September 23 – Sharon Jones & The Dap Kings with Grace Potter & The Nocturnals @ Palladium
Friday, September 24 – Charlie Robison @ Granada
Saturday, September 25 – Drive By Truckers @ House of Blues
Sunday, September 26 – The Black Crowes w/ Band of Heathens @ House of Blues
Thursday, September 30 – Michael Franti & Spearhead @ House of Blues
Friday, October 1 – Shakira @ American Airlines Center
Friday, October 1 – Citizen Cope @ House of Blues
Saturday, October 2 – Citizen Cope @ House of Blues
Wednesday, October 6 – Vampire Weekend with Beach House and The Very Best @ Palladium
Wednesday, October 6 – Local Natives w/ The Love Language and The Union Line @ House of
Friday, October 8 thru Sunday, October 10 – ACL Festival in Austin @ Zilker Park
Saturday, October 9 – The National @ House of Blues
Thursday, October 14 – Blitzen Trapper @ House of Blues
Wednesday, October 20 – Sufjan Stevens @ McFarlin Auditorium (SMU)
Wednesday, October 20 – Gorillaz @ Verizon Theater
Monday, October 25 – Jonsi (from Sigur Ros) @ Verizon Theater
Wednesday, October 27 – Interpol @ Palladium
Wednesday, October 27 – Widespread Panic @ Verizon Theater
Satuday, October 30 – Ghostland Observatory @ Palladium
Saturday, October 30 – Galactic @ Granada
Monday, November 1 – Massive Attack and Thievery Corporation @ Palladium
Tuesday, November 2 – Of Montreal @ Granada
Thursday, November 4 – Mumford & Sons @ House of Blues

Crystal Castles, Massive Attack, Mumford & Sons...OH MY! I get jacked up just thinking about how much Massive Attack is gonna dominate the Metroplex.

Enough of this...on to SOTW:

The SOTW is clearly "Suburbs" by Arcade Fire. If you haven't heard of Arcade Fire by now, then you are one step behind my Mom...FACE! Even my cat, Sam, has been known to jam a little "Crown of Love" on his keyboard...and you f'ing know my cat has a keyboard!

The album 'Suburbs' is a stellar concept album based guessed it...the Suburbs, and Suburban life. Interestingly, Win and William Butler, the lead singer and his brother, grew up in a rather familiar suburb in Texas known as The Woodlands. In my opinion, this makes the album, that much more badass. Similar to how Dazed & Confused struck a chord with us in our youth.

I can picture a young Spencer English cutting his teeth on the not-so-mean-streets of suburban Houston. This song/album is neither anti-suburbs, nor pro-suburbs. It's a pre-apocalyptic view of the pinnacle of suburbia - Suburban-TX. So, to the rest of Urban and Rural America...go F yourself!

Although this video is fan-made, I really enjoyed it:

Shoutout to DP...same page.

Hope you Dig,

Friday, August 13, 2010

Song of the Week (M.I.A. - XXXO)

Unicorns, leopards, swans, swords, technology and M.I.A. Now THAT is a party I want to be at.

This new album has been a long time coming. Similar to the first album, I like about half, and I'm not too stoked about the rest. However, I ended really liking Kala after several listens, so I will reserve ultimate judgment for another day.

"XXXO", or more literally: Kiss Kiss Kiss Hug, is a pretty stellar dance track from a respectable artist. I think it's a commentary about social injustice. Regardless of the meaning, this is a killer song that warrants several plays on the "Get Ready for the Night Mix"...don't act like you don't have one. If I heard the DJ at the Slip Inn spinning this, I'd probably be like: "F yeah!" To be honest, I just feel a lot more comfortable attempting complex robo-dance moves to M.I.A. than to Rihanna...I'm just sayin'. Once Rihanna builds a little street cred (i.e. she gets a Tamil Tiger freedom fighter for a father), maybe I'll change my tune. I'm just playin'. F Rihanna.

Full disclosure: I've had a crush on M.I.A. since 2004. Why?
1) She is smokin' ballz (explanation:
2) She does all of her own artwork
3) She's from Sri Lanka (Do you know anything about Sri Lanka?)
4) All her videos are awesome

Hope you Dig,

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Song of the Week (Aerosmith - Living on the Edge)

I went with my amigo PT to see Aerosmith at Superpages Center this week. It pretty much kicked ass. And that's saying a lot for a band that is as dependent on Steven Tyler's stage presence and vocal wizardry as it is on simply rocking. Steven Tyler is 62! Are you f'ing kidding me? Most 60-year-olds I know (in particular, the ones that make me feed their cat when they are gone for 1 day) are fast asleep by the time Aerosmith is going into their 1st Encore. FYI...they had 3 encores.

Aerosmith gives me hope that the guitar solo isn't dead. Listen to any Aerosmith song, and you'll hear a smokin' Joe Perry solo. Specifically, Living on the Edge holds a special place in my formative Elementary School Chronicles. "Get a Grip" was my 2nd tape ever. Preceded by MC Hammer's "Please Hammer, Don't Hurt 'Em" and followed by Weird Al Yankovic's "Off the Deep End". That'll take you back. I think "Get a Grip" may have saved me and my Sister from killing each other on family vacations circa 1993.

"Living on the Edge" brings back memories of headbanging on the way to Rapid Revolutions (a skate park guessed it...we roller-bladed). Roller-blading wasn't so gay in long as you paired your roller-blades with black Francois Girbaud jean shorts and a No Fear shirt.

This video touches on just about every contemporary moral problem a teenager faced in the 90s, and you can tell which of these Aerosmith endorses:
1) Vandalism (F0r)
2) School shootings (Against)
3) Teacher - student extra-curricular relations (Gray area)
4) Train accidents (Against)
5) Pre-marital sex (For)

It also may suggest what John Conner was doing before the T1000 came looking for know...for Termination purposes.

Hope you Dig,