• RIP Vance Bockis, DC punk/metal musician of the bands The Obsessed, The Factory, 9353, and Pentagram [Washington CityPaper]. Larger story by Neal Augenstein [WTOP]. We assume that The Factory’s 9/29 show with Kix at the Howard Theatre will be cancelled.
• Interview: Stephanie Williams’ Q&A with Bravenoise [DC Music Download].
• Interview: David Hintz talks to Mary Bridget Davies [DC Rock Live]. She’s starring in the musical One Night with Janis Joplin at the Arena Stage’s Kreeger Theater from September 28th to November 4th.
• Local media news: Washington Times founder Rev. Sun Myung Moondied at age 92 [DCist].
• Local venue news: the Black Cat‘s new booker is Candace Jones. Washington CityPaper has her bio and DCist has a Q&A (by one of her friends). Jones will be at the club in late Sept/early Oct and will be handling the booking for local bands, supporting acts, and some Backstage shows, while the club’s owner Dante Ferrando will continue booking most of the touring bands.
On Saturday night, I went up to Sonar in Baltimore for a four-band black metal tour: Sweden’s Marduk, Norway’s 1349, Atlanta’s Withered, and Canada’s Weapon. There were also 7 local bands on the lineup– I’m not a huge fan of pay-to-play (which is the policy of asking local bands to pre-sell tickets to shows in order to play; I wrote a lengthy article for TBD.com about Jaxx last year where I talked a lot about that policy; you can read that article here), and I think that an ELEVEN-BAND lineup is a bit ridiculous, even for a Saturday night. Sure, having a lot of local bands on the bill helps bring people out to the show, but there were already four good touring bands on this bill!
Anyway: apparently they were staggering the local bands between the Talking Head Lounge (Sonar’s smallest room) and the Talking Head Club (the medium-sized room), to shorten the setup time, then all four touring bands played on the Club stage. Except that’s not exactly what happened. I got there around 8:30 and caught the end of Baltimore’s Strong Intention‘s set on the Club stage, then Weapon played a great set. Then, as Withered played its set on the Club stage, there was another local band playing AT THE SAME TIME on the Talking Head stage down the hall. No joke– one of the touring bands was competing for an audience with one of the local bands. Not only that, those of us trying to hear Withered from the back of the Club room had to strain to hear them over the sound of the local band playing a few feet away (if you’ve never been to Sonar, these two rooms are very close together). It made for a really frustrating night– sure, I’d just seen Withered about a year ago when they played Sonar with Krallice, but it would’ve been nice to hear them again without having their music mashed up with that of a local band. It made for a really frustrating night and just seemed completely unprofessional overall. Seriously, folks: don’t have a touring band compete for an audience and decibels with a local band. It’s just not awesome.
Local band news
So much news about local bands that we had to break it into its own section today!
• Black Clouds have a “name your own price” deal for their album Everything Is Not Going To Be OK on Bandcamp.
• You can pre-order the new limited-edition Auroboros EP (250 hand-numbered copies that come with a free digital download) via Australopithecus Records. No, we can’t spell that either, so just click the link.
• Preview: Michael J West on the DC Jazz Festival [Washington CityPaper], which started this past weekend.
• Somewhat after the fact but somewhat relevant: Here are several previews for CapitalBop‘s DC Jazz Lofts, part of this year’s DC Jazz Festival: Siriam Gopal [DCist] and Listen Local First. Two shows were this weekend and the third is June 9th.
We here at ShowlistDC have an ArtsBook-shaped hole in our hearts and inboxes this morning, as TBD’s Arts Editor (and daily ArtsBook scribe) Andrew Beaujon has joined Pointer as Senior Online Reporter. We’ll miss Beaujon’s thorough compilation of the DC area’s arts news– and his snarky commentary along the way. In his absence, here are a few DC-area music news worth sharing today:
Things to read:
• Sharon van Etten is the name that’s going to be all over the indie-rock news this week, as her new album Tramp comes out this week, and she’s playing the Black Cat on Saturday (as recommended by ShowlistDC!). Lots to read here– Marc Masters has a lengthy chat with SVE in the Washington Post, and NPR has a piece on the indie-folkster as well.
• Miss the Super Bowl’s Halftime show (with Madonna, LMFAO, Nicki Minaj, MIA, and Cee-Lo)? Jon Pareles over at the New York Timesgives a summary. (The only quasi-scandalous thing that happened: MIA flipped the bird. Pitchfork has some video.)
• Maura Judkis on Apple’s Siri joinig Erykah Badu and Biz Markie as a guest vocalist for the Flaming Lips [Washington Post].
• Empire Jazz Clubtries again [Washington CityPaper], reports Michael J. West. They will have a weekly calendar starting this week that will include karaoke (Wednesdays), film discussions (Sundays), and live radio broadcasts.
• Do you get confused between the bands U.S. Royalty and American Royalty? Joe Warminsky sets up a handy chart to help you tell the difference. [Washington CityPaper]
• DC’s Marc Masters and NC’s Grayson Currin’s latest the Out Door [Pitchfork] “explore[s] the instrumental methods of lute-player Jozef Van Wissem, cross formats with Austin multi-media factory Monofonus Press, and meet Bay Area black metal experimentalists Sutekh Hexen“– and is, as always, a good one-stop shop for catching up with the latest noise news.
• DC’s Aaron Leitko reviews the new Royal Baths album Better Luck Next Life over on Pitchfork.
• Live reviews: Anthony Pirog at Twins Jazz by Michael J. West [Washington Post]. Crystal Heidemann on Night Beds at the End [the Vinyl District].
Things to listen to and/or watch:
• Listen: NPR is streaming Shearwater‘s Animal Joy, which comes out on 2/14. They’re opening for Sharon van Etten at the Black Cat on Saturday.
• Listen: NPR brings us the 9:30 club sets from JEFF the Brotherhood and the Kills.
• Listen: NPR and WXPN’s World Café bring us Girls.
• Listen: Here are 9 new Latin metal bands recommended by Jasmine Garsd [NPR]: Mexico’s Split Heaven, Arcania, Goatzilla, The Arkitecht, and Majestic Downfall; the Dominican Republic’s Archaios; Brazil’s Krisiun; and two US bands– Miami’s Inferion and Los Angeles’s Tukaaria. The link has soundclips if you need some tunes to wake you up this Monday morning.
• Watch: DCHeavyMetal.com shares three new local metal music videos, from the bands Fierce Allegiance, King Giant, and Auroboros.
• Watch: Bill Frisell did some John Lennon stuff at a NPR Tiny Desk Concert.
• Watch: Bon Iver‘s “Holocene” and “Beth/Rest” plus Kristin Wiig’s Lana Del Rey impersonation/apology on “Weekend Update” on this week’s SNL, courtesy of Stereogum.