Sunday, June 28, 2009

Friday Night at Holdsworth Court with a *New Camera*! Woo!

Well, as evidence bellow this post shows I was able to somewhat fix Michelle's camera (sorta) and take few more videos with it. But this week Michelle surprised me with a brand spanking new Canon Powershot SX10!, it is her camera technically but we are both under the assumption that I might never give it back. So on Friday night I went out to test what it can do. I was down at the newly renovated Levee to watch some of my favorite band and film them, and the SX10 did such a better job then the old A430 I can't get over it.

Anyway, even though I only put up videos of them just a little while ago, here's Colonel Craze and the Hunch doing what's possibly my favorite song of their's "My Only Hope is a Wet Dream" as shot through the new camera, Check out the extreme close-ups it can do:

The blurry dream sequence effect is something I added because I was bored and I wanted it to look like the lens had fogged up from the heat, because it was Goddamn hot in there. I finished mastering their new album the other day, and it is the best thing you will ever hear...Period.. Camp outside Fred's records until the day they release it. It is that good.

Next up was SURGEON who I covered here a few months ago, if anybody can remember back that far. I've been looking forward to filming them again with my improved technology, since they are such a technological band (they have 2 E-bows!!). They are a super tight-package of epic noodle rockers. I heard someone criticize them as "like video game music.." but I don't think that shouldn't be a deterrent, their songs have epic adventures and dynamic action like a classic Mega-Man game. I don't know the names of these wordless songs, but here are two of their tracks:


When Kill Popoff came on I figured I'd try to record their set without using my (girlfriend's) Edirol for sound and this proved to be ill advised as the new camera's microphones are way too sensitive and the end product was a jarring mass of buzzed out distortion. So unfortunately I can't use any of the Kill Popoff videos. I then went next door to check out The Kremlin who I haven't seen in ages, as a card carrying member of the KDPC (Kremlin Dance Party of Canada) it is a sin and a shame that I haven't blogged about them yet. But when I got there it was around 2:40am and it was disgustingly sweaty in there, my arms were tired, the sound through the PA system was just awful, The band was on the dangerous side of intoxicated and Comrade Lenin's guitar seemed to explode and disentigrate after a couple of songs. As one of my favorite local bands of all time it would've been a diservice to put up those videos. It occurred to me that The Kremlin are a band that already have a sizeable amount of good quality official music videos, so within the next couple of days I will give them a proper throwing-stones write up here. Anyway, I'm off. Talk to you all soon.

Friday, June 26, 2009

Night Music at The Ship with McKudo

Didn't mean to take this long put this up but here it is. When I first had the idea to start a blog I wanted to make a blog where I would share my many bootlegs of Night Music shows and talk about the local bands in them. I'd have to talk to Craig Squires about that but I still might do that one of these days. In the mean time I'm gonna try to take some videos every month of the Night Music jams. Last week McKudo hosted the night, they had added Josh Ward on six string bass to the original group of Adam Staple on drums and random things, Sean Panting on left handed guitar and Rob Power on keyboards and percussion. It was a super fun show. They did improvisations to washing machine and moose call instructional tapes. Here is a video of the moose call one:

They also did the best version of Led Zeppelins "Black Dog" I've ever heard and I'm still kicking myself in the ass because I didn't get the camera ready in time to catch it. I caught the two open Jams this time though. Here is the first one (Michelle took the video) with me playing the upside-down left handed guitar (all my licks came out inverted!) Craig Squires on Saxophone, Rob Power on keyboards (that's a Keyboard Bass you're hearing here), Debra Jackman on crazy vocalizations and CBC radio's Mack Furlong on drums.

The next jam is also very long but it really goes to interesting places I think. This Jam features Alison Corbett on Violin, all of McKudo in their regular roles, and Romano Di Nillo playing a fancy percussion box. This jam gets really trance-y and interesting if you let yourself get into

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Mopey, Novaks and Plaskett reviews

I got some more album reviews published in todays issue of The Scope. Instead of just hyperlinking them like last time, I'll just paste them up here for your reading convenience.

Mopey Mumble-Mouse
I Am Happy Being Nothing
Righteous local weirdos Mopey Mumble Mouse hot off the heels of their 2nd RPM challenge album, release their new full length disc I Am Happy Being Nothing. The album plays like a concept album with all songs—from the WGB cover “Babylon Mall” on down—dealing with Mopey’s rabid contempt for big box stores, blatant commercial capitalism and the de-humanizing industrial trappings of modern day life. The album is by far the most energetic, brutal and confrontational release from Mopey yet. Songs like “Young Professional” and “Food Fair” come at you like a bucket of snarling, frothing werewolves in a swirling centrifuge. The album is a party bag of hardcore punk, experimental pop noise, and melodramatic cabaret that Curtis Kilfoy’s impassioned vocals and the bands endless enthusiasm sell every second of.

Stream or download the album from here!

The Novaks
Things Fall Apart
(Sonic Records)
In the four years since The Novaks last album they’ve had to re-invent themselves as a power trio. As a result Things Fall Apart is much more riff oriented, and the band has moved to a more hard hitting classic rock sound which is more early AC/DC or T-Rex than The Heartbreakers. The change does them good, Mick Davis’ swaggering, woozy howl is better served in a boogie-rich, amped up environment then in the more jangly sounds of their earlier material. I got really hooked into picking apart his vocal theatrics—the way he extends the “staaaaaaaarr-aahh” in “Billy The Kid” is borderline ridiculous (but awesome) and the way he twists and contorts “truuu-uuuu-uth” in “Sometimes I Gotta Go Down” is truly perverted. The big glammed out hooks dig in deeper the more you listen to them and the beats do their job getting your fists pumpin’.

Joel Plaskett
This is an odd day and age to be releasing triple albums. This is a day and age of iPods permanently set to random play, careers made on a single shared mp3 download and world tours to support 4 song ep's. Who has the patience and enough ability to concentrate nowadays to listen to close to 2 hours of mid-tempo, mostly acoustic folk pop? Not me really, but I did. Joel Plaskett decided to go the way of modern day Prince and release his triple disc, numerology obsessed "Three". On it are a good few very enjoyable tracks with sparse arrangements, tasteful acoustic flourishes and intimate vocal harmonies, but as with all projects like this where the main selling point seems to be showing off the artists great prolificness; the bloat gets in the way and chokes the listener with a profundity of half baked, middling ideas. With stronger editing Joel could've sliced the album down to one enjoyable single disc instead of trying the listeners patience with an extra 14 or so uninspiring songs about sunshine or the road. Sadly Plaskett couldn't pull a "69 Love Songs" out of his ass, so do what most people will do and find the 8 or 9 songs that move you the most and keep the rest in the recycle bin.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

New Errand Boy Videos.

Brian Williams of The Seattle Study directed two videos for local laptop genius Errand Boy and I think they are probably the best looking locally produced videos I've seen in a long while. They are simple visual ideas but are just so nicely realized, and no other local artist makes music better suited for lush video treatments then Errand Boy.

Errand Boy actually has a lot of good videos, but the rest rely on manipulation of old stock footage and found public domain clips. I have nothing against this approach, I just wanted to display the excellent photography done in the two above videos first. Of his other videos this is my favorite, for the song "Grindcore She Wrote" it was made to be projected behind the band during live shows but works on it's own just as well.

Thanks to The Product of Newfoundland blog for alerting me to these.

Sunday, June 14, 2009


Don't ask because you will only be disappointed.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

SUPERGOD!!! ~ a man pees a hole through his pants

Hey folks
I got inspired today and decided to make another SUPERGOD!! video. this one is for the song "a man pees a hole through his pants" off of the "Rabid Peripheral Mermaid" RPM album (available for free download here). Unfortunately while I was filming this video the camera suffered an accident and was rendered crap. So it looks like there won't be anymore new videos for awhile, at least until the gods of surprise unemployment money look well upon me and I can afford to buy Michelle another camera (hopefully a better one). Sad sad times. Anyway, here is the video, it gets pretty trippy at the end when I start playing with psychedelic liquid effects and bring out the blood ball. Tell me if this is watchable or not.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

I'm writing CD Reviews for The Scope now

They just appeared in this weeks issue. I covered the new Map To Temenos album "O! Sweet Guillotine" and Halifax gypsy jazz band Gypsophilia's album "SA-BA-DA-OW!". Check em out if you have the time.

What albums should I review next? anybody got any suggestions?

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

am/fm dreams and Ye-Yeti

After a year of me nagging them to start playing shows in St. John's, the mythological creatures from Mount Pearl emerged from from their sarcophagus to play a set at The Ship (opening for The Pathological Lovers and Ye-Yeti). am/fm dreams for those of you who are not in the know; are a very prolific band from out in Mount Pearl who drew a lot of peoples attention last year with a really stellar entry in the RPM Challenge and kept everyones interest by releasing three other albums (including this years RPM challenge entry "The Plaid Album") since then. It was a really solid set, especially good considering it was pretty much their second live show ever. It was a real treat to finally catch them, although as a bit of criticism they didn't play my two favorite songs of theirs "I wish I never met you" and "Always The Follower", but I guess that's the problem when you release six albums before your first show, just which of the songs do you play? They need to chill out a bit as well and bounce around a bit more. Bouncing is important.
Here is a rocker of theirs called "Paper Tiger"

and here is their closer "Spaceship". Notice in this video how I capture the four other people (the video quality unfortunately only lets me pick out two of them though) in my vicinity who were also filming this rare beast for their own blogs or facebooks.

Also that night, I caught Ye-Yeti for the first time, who don't play that many shows in town for the good reason of being too young to legally be in a bar without their parents written permission. Now I was very skeptical of them ever since they made the cover of the Scope's "Hot New Music" issue awhile back. "What?! they're like 15 years old and have only played like two shows! why the hell are they on the cover of the scope (and not me)?" is what I thought. I was prepared to to take that bitter cynical attitude with me through their set but Goddammit! they have matching fez's with "Ye-Yeti" written on them! how can I stay mad at that? So how was their music? you ask. well it was about 95% exuberance and about 5% ability, which honestly, is just about all I'm looking for in a highschool band. I can't say my brain exploded or anything but they certainly had energy and got the people moving. Also they had probably the most interesting musical tastes of any teenage band that I've seen in ages and ages. I started taking a couple of videos but they progressively got more and more naked as the show went on and I suddenly became more and more aware that I am a 30 year old man standing around attentively taking videos of half naked hairless teenage boys gyrating in a club, and I felt very very uncomfortable all of a sudden. Not that there's anything wrong with taking videos of unknowing, half-naked children, I just have a public image I have to keep up you know. Here is a video I took, I don't know what the name of the song is (edit: it is called "Ammit"), but here it is anyway. Cheers.

Colonel Craze and Mark Bragg

I try not to be this tardy when putting up videos. but to today I finally got around to putting the finishing touches on a pile of footage I took on the weekend before last. Since I got hold of my girlfriends fancy Edirol recording devise I've been thinking it might be nice to go back and record some of the bands I've previously posted about. Colonel Craze and The Hunch are pretty much my favorite band going right now. The weekend before last they played a big show opening for Mark Bragg and the Butchers at the Rockhouse. The show was deadly. The Rockhouse has a tendency to sound like a cafeteria if there isn't a packed crowd but Colonel Craze make it work.
Here's "Hard Hat Opportunity" from that show:

And here's the very politically correct song "Nice Day For A Rape" (Don't worry I'm pretty sure Andrew Waterman probably doesn't support or promote Rape directly)

Then it was Mark Bragg and his latest incarnation of The Butchers. Now, I've always been a bit take-him-or-leave-him with regard to Mark Bragg in the past, I've generally liked him, but found his live shows kinda ungainly and all over the place. But this new formation of the band has been stripped down to a tight little four piece (including Bragg) of young guys who don't overcrowd Mark's loquacious compositions with needless baggage. Brad Power was channeling some awesome Marc Ribot tones and I don't think I've ever seen him play more fluidly, and Victor was playing Trombone!!! unfortunately my camera batteries died before I could capture Vic on the horn. But here's "Plans For The Boys" for your viewing pleasure.