Awkwardness! Opens with big driving drums, a distorted loose bass line, synth bass followed by guitar then powerful vocal that channels both earlier electro-rock influences as well as power groups like Zeppelin. This is as straightforward rock and roll as any one makes, electro punk to the highest degree, and my favorite new road tune.
The Gentry, a separate entity providing Rock & Roll to Logan’s emo-tronic sound, also have a new record recently released entitled ‘Sex by the Unit’, which sports an awesome condom-like package which is well worth the $10 I paid for mine. You even have to tear it like a condom package.
Recent shows in the Pacific Northwest have been raucous parties, featuring lines stretching around the block, and satisfied partied-out party-goers filtering out into the early morning. The Oregon Music News recently profiled Logan’s growing impact on the Portland live music scene.
This past Sunday, June 27, marked the launch of Logan’s West Coast tour, starting in Seattle at The Cuff’s Gay Pride Block Party and playing to an estimated crowd of 6,000.
Dates are below – try and catch one if you can.
6.27 – Seattle, WA – The Cuff Pride Street Party
7.13 – San Francisco, CA – Rockit Room with Special Guests The Hugs (Portland, OR) & Little Black Bats (Sacramento, CA) $8
7.14 – Sacramento, CA – Blue Lamp with Special Guests The Hugs (Portland, OR) & Little Black Bats (Sacramento, CA) $8
8.6 – Salem, OR – Flipside Nightclub $10 (tickets here) / $15 at the door
8.20 – Portland, OR – Mississippi Studios
Portland Music Today
Well, first I think I’d like to say that I’m glad that I found nwmusicblog.com. It seems to be a real liberating place for real music discussion, that’s REALLY related to local music.
I read two blogs recently, one from New York, and another in England. They were both referring to the “Portland Scene” specifically. The blog was intentionally addressed to Portland as a separate entity from Seattle… I found this first attribute to be laughable. The next attribute was their aesthetic descriptions of the Portland scene… I had no idea what they were talking about, and I’ve been playing the Portland scene for 6 years now. No such environment exists that they were describing.
I won’t go on to elaborate, but I think it’s quite comical how hard people are trying to hold on to a dying idea. The Portland music environment is quite an anomaly. Here’s my observation:
Bands from afar look at the NW as a mecca for musical development. The bands that have so much CURRENT success from the area (Modest Mouse, The Decemberists), have convinced the bands that come here that this is the music that we all make here in Portland. Therefore, they all come to Portland with this lame music, and say it’s Portland music.
This is what I believe the people in the media are talking about. They say it’s the, “Portland Music Scene”.
The G Word
I would make the argument that this is definitely not the case, but a very different idea is true. Those that I grew up with here in Oregon, are all fans of heavy GRUNGE music. OOOOHHH NOOOOO, I said it! Not that word! UGGGHHHH, HISSSSSSSSS!!! That’s right GRUNGE. Or, should I say instead, punk rock. Bands like, Tad, Napalm Beach, Dead Moon, The Wipers, or the more esteemed counter parts, Nirvana, Alice In Chains, Soundgarden and Pearl Jam.
I can attest to the TRUTH that this area is infamous for it’s DIY movement. I would suggest that this value still exists, and best identifies this scene to this day. And I should ALSO suggest that the sound is grungier and nastier than ever.
Here’s another simple truth…
NO ONE GOES TO HEAR THE MUSIC
That’s not to say there’s people going to the shows. I definitely think that’s going on, but in my observation, it’s all a conglomeration of the dance party, night life scene. NOT the rock and roll, liberate your minds idea. However, there’s defintely something to say about the metal movement. There’s definitely kids going to the Satyricon to hear the metal bands, but we’d all have to start METAL bands to fit in with this. My theory is that this is an extension of the Californian exodus (Californian corporate investors moving in on Oregon). Plus, it’s still more bands that AREN’T from Oregon.
Do I have a problem with this? Absolutely not. I think it’s great that people are making music that they love. however I think the world that we live in today music gets everywhere, and people get everywhere at a rate unlike any other. The “Portland” scene doesn’t exist. It’s really the “American” scene and it just happens in Portland, because they’re people from all over the country that make their way into Portland because it’s the new, “Indie” L.A. …. might I suggest that it’s because there’s so many people moving here from L.A.?
I’m pretty much rambling here, but I thought I’d get off to a start with speaking my mind. Is there great music in Portland? Absolutely!
I guess I’m just looking for suggestions on how we can start getting people to care about it…
I’m PROBABLY wrong. Tell me your experience has been different.
Olympia: Tuesday, 11.24.2009
The Drug Purse w/ The Strange Boys + Jetty Cats
8:30 PM @ The Northern – 321 4th Avenue, Olympia, Washington 98501
Seattle: Wednesday, 11.25.09
Cunnilynguists, Grieves, Looptroop Rockers, Tunji
Tacoma: Friday, 11.27.09
The Fun Police, Ghostwriter, Brotherhood of the Black Squirrel
(TRYPTOPHAN RECOVERY DAY) Black Friday 9PM @ The New Frontier
Portland: Sunday, 11.29.09
1776, Go Fever, The Whole Wide World
8:00 PM @ Rontoms
600 E Burnside, Portland, Oregon 97212
As Dandy Warhols, we like to take a different approach to Christmas: a little more Old World and a lot more jaunty. Take Italy. Their holiday season is comparable in length to the common American holiday season, but with its baked eel and lumps of coal and mash-ups with what we think of as Halloween traditions – La Befana the Epiphany witch, children in costumes going from door to door for treats – it seems a hell of a lot more festive than a fat man whipping flying deer to bring you an iPhone, doesn’t it? We are on a mission to convince Christendom that Italy does it best. But these things take time; Rome wasn’t bilked in a day. Easing into the task we commence this year with our annual Christmas shows with the introduction of a sliver of sunny Italy to the Northwest’s dreary environs. Just a taste, a Fellini twist on the usual Dandys holiday performance, with shows on December 11th at Nuemos in Seattle and December 12th and 13th at Portland’s Wonder Ballroom.
Regardless of how you dress or act for this show, being Fellini inspired, or Italian Christmas inspired, it will likely be one for the memory banks with the promise of their “Little Drummer Boy” cover, as well as the rest of their catalog of great music.
The Dandy Warhol’s Website
The Dandy’s record label
Following up my post about the absolutely fantastic “Combat” off of Arman Bohn’s debut Bits, here’s the video by the Portland artist:
On July 14th, 1789, the French peoples led a revolt against the crown, marking their own Independance Day in July, for their nation. In France, it is called Fête Nationale (“National Celebration”). The story goes that the Bastille fortress was stormed in response to several authoritarian measures being enforced by the Royal family and their guard, including lettres de cachet, which were arbitrary indictments brought forth by the nobles which could not be appealed. The Bastille was known for housing political prisoners whose writings had displeased the royal government, and was icon of the type of government the Monarchy had evolved into. In a somewhat ironic twist, at the time of the siege there were only seven inmates, none of great political significance.
So now the date will also mark the continued revolution by Portland’s Dandy Warhols versus their former label Capitol Records (note the scratched out Capitol Records logo on the disc). This time around, we are treated to the band’s original mixes to their album ‘Welcome to the Monkey House’ (WTTMH), released under the alternate name “…Are Sound”. Advance screening of the album provide some quick details on the upcoming release, though I’ll leave the majority of the changes for you to discover.
Absent from these mixes are the original title track ‘Welcome to the Monkey House’, but in its place is ‘Pete International Spaceport’, and eclectic mix of guitarist Peter Holmstrom’s guitar effects and work with the synthesizer. Much improved is the already fantastic song ‘I Am Over It’, which features an extended acoustic guitar portion laid over some of what an experienced WTTMH listener would recognized. Fan (and TV world favorite) ‘We Used to Be Friends’ is more of an unpolished gem that a dear favorite indie band would produce rather than the super-radio slicked version on WTTMH.
‘Welcome to the Monkey House’ was probably the most 80’s sound influenced album that The Dandy Warhols have released to date, likely brought on their appreciation of the timeframes icons such as Love and Rockets, Depeche Mode, and Bauhaus. Nick Rhodes of Duran Duran had his fingers on the production of the original disc, and perhaps that lent some strong influences from the timeframe as well. Those 80s under currents have been muted, though not abandoned in the “…Are Sound” version. Instead, “…Are Sound” blends more with the Dandy’s catalogue, both pre and post WTTMH, than the original does.
Are Sound will be available on the 14th at the Dandy Warhols website. They provide far better quality sound files than you recieve from iTunes or Amazon, and it is actually cheaper if you purchase direct from the artist as well.
If you are interested in NW based indie rock, I would suggest each of the following links for checking out The Dandy’s and a few of the bands they have on their label, Beat the World Records.
Check out this track by Arman Bohn of Portland:
Combat, from Bits
The former bandmate of members of Death Cab for Cutie (they shared a third band back in the day) has no label, and is assembling a band. We’ll have the latest if/when he’s going to play live, and maybe another track. I love this single.
Get ready to celebrate St. Patty’s and the music of The Pogues this weekend when PacNW super tribute group K.M.R.I.A. play the Crystal Ballroom Saturday.
Paying tribute to the rowdy Irish folk-rock of The Pogues, K.M.R.I.A. “are a celebration of their virtuosity, songcraft, and spirit” according to the band’s myspace page. And with as much collective talent as they have, I think it might be wise to take them for their word.
K.M.R.I.A.’s all-star ensemble features Chris Funk and Jenny Conlee of The Decemberists, Ezra Holbrook of Dr. Theopolis, Hanz Araki of The Whyos & Paperboys, Jesse Emerson of Amelia, singer Casey Neill, and Scott McCaughey of R.E.M. and The Minus 5. McCaughey will be pulling double rock duty, playing in both of the night’s bands.
Getting their name from “Kiss My Royal Irish Ass,” a line originally in James Joyce’s Ulysses and later used in the Pogues’ song “Transmetropolitan,” the band only assemble their rock superpowers Captain Planet-style to play shows around Christmas and St. Patty’s Day.
K.M.R.I.A. and The Minus 5—Sat., March 14 at the Crystal Ballroom, 1332 W. Burnside St. Portland, 21 and over, Tickets $12, Doors open at 8 p.m., show at 9 p.m., Tickets available at Crystal Ballroom box office or Ticketmaster
The Upsidedown and Spindrift blow the doors off Tacoma, prepare for Seattle (3/8, The Comet Tavern @ 4:00pm)
Jsun Atoms of The Upsidedown has a smile that charms for miles, and it’s widely visable as he strides into the room to greet me. A handshake and man-hug later, we find ourselves on a cozy couch backstage at the Roseland Lounge. Upstairs, The Rebel Drones are cranking out their trademark sound, and Sleepy Sun is rallying in the next room as they take the stage next.
Portland-based Britt Daniel and the rest of the indie rockers in Spoon are bringing their act to the Crystal Ballroom tonight, marking the band’s first Portland gig since mid-2007. Daniel, lead vocalist for the indie quartet, last played in Portland during last year’s Music Fest Northwest (MFNW).
The show is sold-out, so if you haven’t bought tickets yet now might be a good time to start scouring craigslist. These guys rarely disappoint.
Spoon, with Everest; 9p.m. at McMenamin’s Crystal Ballroom, 1332 W Burnside, Portland, OR
Sleepy Sun is unwinding backstage after the show in Portland, enjoying the feeling of a great set while The Upsidedown are starting their set onstage at the Roseland Lounge. I’m still reveling in the sights of the show they had just put on, a spectacle of energetic rock, dancing and floating vocal harmonies twisting out of the male and female vocal leads. Several members of The Dandy Warhols are present and the place is hopping with great music and great vibes.
The Upsidedown, Sleepy Sun, Rebel Drones, and Pink Snowflakes @ the Roseland (Portland) – January 29th
Just announced, Portland artists The Upsidedown, Pink Snowflakes, and the Rebel Drones are teaming up with a touring band by the name of Sleepy Sun for what is certain to be a great time at the Roseland in PDX.
The Upsidedown hail from Portland, Oregon, and are signed to the Dandy Warhol’s label, Beat the World Records. Their newest CD, ‘Human Destination’ came out August 12th, 2008,and is available via iTunes and eMusic.
The Rebel Drones are a new band started by Matt Hollywood, formerly of the Out Crowd and Brian Jonestown Massacre, last year. You may also remember him from the Rock documentaryby Ondi Timoner profiling BJM and The Dandy Warhols, ‘Dig!’.
A bit of previous Upsidedown live footage from Bob’s Java Jive in Tacoma:
Chief John from The Widespread Reign of The Great Northwest
Brian Coates moves to New York in 2004 where the music/art project that is to become The Great Northwest commences. It grows to involve over 20 people including Portland ex-pats Noah and Nathan Rice (the Christopher Twins), Josh Kalberg, and Dale Winston. After a year in NYC, Brian’s wanderlust leads him west to California. At his friend Armando’s house in Fresno, a musical beacon was sounded. Joe Kaczmarerk, Brent Fellows, Courtney Taylor Taylor, Brent DeBoer, Ray Gordon, Sean “Gothman” Addams, Poopy Simons, Louise Fenton, and a load of new friends converge for a blowout of a party. Brian Richburg, owner of Studio 9 in Fresno makes them a deal for studio time and recording begins. More than an album’s worth of music is made.
Brian, working with Dead Meadow, ends up in the Mt. Pleasant neighborhood of our nation’s capital in 2006. Douglas and Mike from Kora meet up with him at a bar in their mutual ‘hood to hear some unmixed MP3s on his laptop, leave awe-struck and sign him straight away to put out an LP. During a summer pitstop in , with longtime bandmate Randall Crush, the songs receive mixing treatment at The Dandy Warhols’ Odditorium with mastering back east by TJ Lipple (Aloha) at Silver Sonya in Arlington, VA.
The 13 track album brims over with lush soundscapes and ambient modulations. Pop melodies and slowcore pacing coalesce seamlessly throughout the record. Lavish and haunting vocals woven with Brian’s savvy wordplay complete the sonically induced mind altering experience. After the mixing session, Coates said tenderly, “there’s guitar, there’s bass, there’s drums, there’s trombone, there’s Leslie speakers, practice amps, Jew’s Harps, drum loops, tambourines, ebows, harmonicas and pie tins. There’s thought… there’s love.”
A week and a half ago, the writers at NWMB had our first ever meeting at King’s in Ballard. This was a big to-do considering many of us have never met each other. I was very excited for this little get-together however a couple of nights before, I was torn on what to do b/c as you see, I found out that my favorite Portland pop band Derby was playing at the same time, same night.
Well, I knew where my priorities were… I, of course, went to go see
After a few beers and lots of talk about music, the party broke up and Christina, Kevin (editor-in-chief) and I headed out to the Smokeshop. As we walked past the Sunset, I was like “let’s go invite Derby for beers!” So we hightailed it into the Sunset and saw Isaac (the drummer), introduced ourselves and invited him and the rest of the band over. And I’m here to say, that made a recipe for a good time: 1 part Smokeshop, 2 parts Derby, 3 parts Rainer, a bucket of gin & tonic for Kevin and a dash of a little drumming toy bunny that everyone had to sing a tune to (you had to be there…). We talked with Nat and Isaac for a while. We found out they were heading out to play at the Brick (in Roslyn) the next night and were excited how they had some Foreigner and Night Ranger lined up for the set. Also playing an acoustic set at Hattie’s pre-giant fish tank was one of their favorite shows and more. All in all a very fun night! Definitely looking forward to checking out Derby’s new CD and a “later in the evening” show in Seattle. Meanwhile, go to www.derbyrock.com, I promise, they’ll be a new favorite.
North Twin announced two killer lineups this weekend. The first at Dante’s in Portland and then at the Tractor in Ballard. Lots of local NW Ass Slappin, Dirty, Grimy, Ol’ timey Twang and Boot Rhumpin Rock’n'Roll! Read on to win tix.