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Showing posts from May, 2011

Concert Review in NUVO: Band of Horses

After a brief hiatus, in which I did nothing of any lasting literary or artistic value...I've reviewed another concert for Indianapolis' NUVO magazine. This one is about a really cool alt-rock band called Band of Horses. They played a "secret show" at the Indianapolis Museum of Art on Saturday night and totally rocked the crowd...small and select as it was.
Anyway...check it out if you've got a minute. You won't be disappointed, I swear.
http://bit.ly/jcSMIf

My Top Four Favorite Books

Why four you may ask? Well, that has to do with my rather stringent qualifications for what qualifies as a "favorite" book. The criteria are quite simple: it has to be a book that I can read over and over again without ever getting fed up. It has to be one of those books which every time I read it feels like the first time.
Having said that, I have only four favorite books. There are lots of books I'd love to claim are my favorite books, titles such as Ulysses, Moby Dick, War and Peace, 100 Years of Solitude, The Great Gatsby, etc., etc., etc., but I would just be lying to you and to myself. In truth, those books bore the crap out of me. And while I may just have eliminated the chance that I'll ever get accepted into a PhD program, I'd rather just be honest with myself and read what makes me want to turn the pages endlessly.
So without further ado...my Top Four Favorite Books:
1.) Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, by Hunter S. Thompson
Without a doubt, my favorite boo…

Cake at the Murat Theatre: A quality performance of Rock and Roll Music

A quality performance of Rock and Roll Music...but lacking in energy and balls.
I never got into Cake very heavily in the 90s, but I definitely remember them being around. They were one of those bands you couldn't avoid for a minute or two there. All that is to say: I've heard of 'em, I like a few of their songs, but I wouldn't shell out my hard earned scratch to watch them play. Which is precisely why, when my friend offered me her spare ticket for free, I gladly took it and went to the show.
Cake pretty much packed the Egyptian room of the Murat Theatre here in Indy, with what I'd say was about 2500 or so half-stoned, somewhat interested Cake fans. The most interested ones seemed to be way up close to the stage--naturally--where puffs of weed smoke could be seen wafting occasionally. Toward the middle and rear of the crowd, where I was, it seemed like most people came for the same reason I did: "Hey, it's Cake. Why not?"
I have to say they put on a …

Album Review: Tyler the Creator's Goblin

Tyler the Creator has been getting a lot of hype lately, along with the whole Odd Future Wolf Gang Kill Them All crew. In case you don't know, OFWGKTA is a hip-hop collective based in L.A., in which the average age is probably like 19. Tyler himself is only 19 or 20.
But if these guys are short on years, they're long on talent and originality. Between Tyler the Creator, Frank Ocean, and Earl Sweatshirt, I think its safe to say we're looking at the future of hip-hop...a certain type of hip-hop, that is. What type? Well, let's just say--at least in Tyler's case--this is not dance club hip-hop. The emphasis--at least for now--seems to be on the darkness and psychological twistedness of the lyrics. The beats are hard, rough, and basic, and as a result, few of the tracks have those kind of stick-in-your-head hooks that Top of the Charts hip-hop and R&B is known for. You will NOT be hearing any of these songs on the Top 40. However, if you listen closely, you'll …

Latest Concert Review: Jonathan Richman

Check out my latest review in NUVO! http://bit.ly/l1g8gm
Remember the singing narrator from "There's Something About Mary"? Well, he actually has a name -- Jonathan Richman -- and a discography going back to the early 70s when he founded the proto-punk group The Modern Lovers.
Nowadays, his live show resembles nothing of his Modern Lovers days, and he comes off more as a really polished street busker. But his songwriting is funny and engaging, and his lyrics will teach you a few things about life if you're willing to listen.
Check it out! Give me some clickage!

House Show: Amo Joy, Son Drop, Christian Taylor

Hot damn...it's been a few days (four?) since I last posted. This is partly due to a wicked head-cold that's been creeping up on me for about a week and finally bit me in the ass. And of course, Friday night's misadventures didn't help delay the onset of this malady...but I did have an awesome time.
A few friends and I headed to a big ol' brick house on College Ave. in Midtown to catch a few local bands and one from Kalamazoo, Mich. The two local groups were Amo Joy and Christian Taylor (founder of Homeschool), and the one from Kalamazoo was Son Drop.
Sometimes I feel like I have a habit of gushing about concerts. But the fact is, when you're there, whooping it up, having a good time, it's really hard to come away with a lot of bad things to say about the music. Especially when you're listening to a line-up of groups that really have their sh*t together and approach the show with the same professionalism they would as a concert of 10,000 people. But se…

From Chicago....Molehill

Just want to give a brief bloggy shout-out to some cool cats I met tonight at Indy's Melody Inn: Chicago-based rockers Molehill.


I talked to these guys after their set tonight at the Melody. Co-founder and frontman Peter Manhart refers to their sound as somewhere between Muse, Maroon 5, and Sublime. I heard a little bit of Coldplay in there, too, thanks to the trippy, sometimes Pink Floyd-like keyboard work of Greg Van Zuiden. Backed up by the hard-core drum and bass work of Devin Staples and Trevor Jones, respectively, these guys seem to cross genres, bordering on punk at times, but seeming to be most comfortable in a bluesy, soulful, almost theatrical zone where they reside for most of their tracks.

Personally, I think these guys seemed to tap into something when they let loose and veered closer to punk, letting Manhart unleash his full lead guitar chops. Granted, I'm a garage/guitar rock kind of guy to begin with, but I'd like to see them let loose a bit more and tap the…

Bad film buffs get a load of this...Watercooler Films

Those of you out there who relish in hilariously campy, kitschy, and just plain awful movies once in a while will get a kick out of Watercooler Films, a film critique sight that posts on YouTube.

This guy highlights a new terrible movie every so often, posting a clip and commentary about the film on YouTube. Blogspot is being a little bitchy today and won't let me paste the actual web address into this post, so just click on the Hyperlink(s) above. If you get to YouTube, just search "watercooler" and it'll pop up.

The latest film he's making fun of is the 1988 computer/robot spec-fiction peice R.O.T.O.R. It's kind of a crummy, low-budget, low-talent remake of Robo Cop. The film not only rips off the premise of Robo Cop, but taps into that weird fear people seemed to have in the late 80s that eventually everything was going to be run by robots. Robots started popping up in rich peoples homes (in the movies) like Rocky IV and Wall Street, robots even started beco…