tigerbeatpoet, xo

what i listen to on the way there and in between

Tuesday, May 30, 2006

The Fall & STNNNG - Varsity Theatre - 5/29/06

I'm going to do a write up about this show for the site, but I wanted to hang out over here and just get it out of my system so it would be easier to review. Yay!

I had never actually been to the Varsity until this very night. Nor had I seen Stnnng or The Fall. So I'd say the night was chock full of (intimidating, hard-to-understand frontman) goodness. Dave and David had talked about how they didn't think the turnout was going to be very good since it was Memorial Day, but I think that it was a nice-sized crowd.
Finally got to see STNNNG, they were very intense boys. Chris Besigner, the lead singer looks like John Bonham ever so slightly. He speak/sings as if he were possessed by demons and he forced his lyrics out as if it hurt him to do so. These guys are the kind-of band that make you want to start a fight. And coming from me, that's a compliment.
The middle band backed out a couple weeks beforehand, I still have some research to do before I can figure out why. Thank goodness we left for food, because when we came back, the front of The Varsity was very busy with people basically avoiding it. When we went to see what the fuss was about, it was easy to understand why. Whoever it was, they were a performance artist who played video and fucked with the audio also like a dj scratches a record, it was aggravating and luckily I only had to sit through only a few minutes of it. I might have gone completely insane if it lasted any longer.
The Fall finally got that to stop by coming out to do the set. My knowledge of the group is very limited...

I will be back for a further update tomorrow. I'm falling asleep at my desk. in the meantime hear what these kids have to say about it.

*they have some minneapolis insight on the unofficial fall site

Monday, May 29, 2006

Taking The Long Way - Dixie Chicks (Open Wide/Columbia - May 23, 2006)

I've been listening to country music my whole life, and I'm not afraid to admit it. So I remember when these guys hit the scene pretty hard in 1998 with Wide Open Spaces. It was a sound that was needed in the old-hat dynamic of the mainstream country radio genre at the time. Almost every act had been part of the Nashville machine for at least 10 - 15 years and their sound was fun, accessable and refreshing. It made them almost-untouchable superstars for the next five years.

But then came Natalie Maines' rather innocuous comment about being ashamed that George Bush was from Texas. The resulting backlash, the back and forth with white-trash superstar Toby Keith (who has since began backsliding about his loyalties) and the general media coverage of rabid country fans in protest made it an irritating and overblown situation.

With this new release they are trying to move forward, into the mainstream, or one might assume, away from the country genre. Taking The Long Way was produced by Rick Rubin, and is a step in a different direction, taking cues from Minnesota's very own, Jayhawk Gary Louris and on a larger scale, Semisonic's Dan Wilson. Not to mention the likes of Linda Perry, Sheryl Crow and even Keb Mo'. If you hadn't fallen for the previous sound of the Chicks, it would be an easier listen. First of all, there is no mindblowing stand-out on this album. It lacks a showstopper, for me these are Wide Open Spaces' "Let 'Er Rip", If I Fall(You're Going Down With Me) off of Fly and Home's Long Time Gone. I can't see myself doing the scream in glee and turn the stereo up high move in response to any of the songs. From the start it is an almost exhaustingly emotional album. Maybe I just want to put all the previous politics behind me, but from the sound of first single 'Not Ready to Make Nice," that won't be happening any time soon.

All this has it's place though, it tells the story, albeit a pretty sad story of what they went through, the backs that were turned, and this new journey. I can complain all day about how I wish it were like the previous albums. But they are still in there somewhere, in their always impeccable harmonies and telling lyricism.

Highlights: Favorite Year, Easy Silence & Bitter End

Sunday, May 28, 2006

How Was The Show 4th Anniversary Party - May 27th, 2005

I have been involved with How Was The Show.com since 2003, when I met David and wrote a couple pieces, harassed him about the calendar and corrected minor spelling errors. So of course it's totally awesome to see it make it to it's 4th anniversary.
I was at the 1st year when it was basically just a birthday party for David at his house. Ben Bachman, the keyboardist from The Idle Hands, drunkenly spilled beer all over my shoes and I brought a giant carrot cake. David sang, and I wish I could remember which songs. And I think someone stole his mic or his mic stand.
This marked the seond year that it's been at the Turf and I had seen one of the five bands, Alva Star. Everyone had great energy, but of course Stook was my favorite. I have been listening to his album, "The Soundtrack to my Minneapolis" constantly since I got it. But I also know that if I had any of the albums by The Debut, The Alarmists & White Light Riot, that the same thing would be occuring. Hmmm, I have to work on getting those albums for myself as well. RIGHT NOW....


I really don't know how to work this thing...