Notes from This Weekend
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!
• Periphery‘s Matt Halpern is on the cover of the July issue of Modern Drummer magazine. You can check him out in action in this improvised jam he posted on YouTube last year.
• There are songs by Beauty Pill, J. Robbins, TONE, and True Womanhood (among many others) on this compilation album to benefit Jason Noble of Rodan and the Shipping News. Jason is battling Synovial Sarcoma, a rare form of cancer.
• You could join TONE‘s guitar army; the longtime post-rock band is looking for a guitarist.
• 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.
• In a local band? Check out Jammin’ Java’s Mid-Atlantic Band Battle 7. Prizes include $2500 cash, studio time, a band photoshoot, and more. Deadline to apply is June 9th.
• DC Music Download’s weekday hits.
• DC Music Live’s weekly show roundup.
• Listen Local First’s June featured artists and events.
• All Songs Considerd’s Bob Boilen deleted all his music [NPR].
• There’s always more Chuck Brown coverage: Chris Richards talks to Source Records’ Logan Westbrooks, the man who helped break “Bustin’ Loose” [Washington Post].
• The Washington Post ran a big feature this weekend about summertime classical music festivals: Anne Midgette on DC-area summer classical music [Washington Post]. Here’s a feature on the Castleton Festival in Rappahannock County, VA (and the $1.08M Guadagnini violin that was sold to finance it). Here’s a sidebar listing all the local festivals and 5 American classical festivals outside of DC.
• Interview: Steve Kiviat chats with zydeco player Curley Taylor on why he likes R. Kelly [Washington CityPaper].
• Interview: Metallomusikum talked to Edmonton black/death metal band Weapon at an in-store at Black Mess Records in Baltimore on Saturday.
• Mike Paarlberg on the comfortable routine of the Washington Performing Arts Society [Washington CityPaper]. WPAS’s president, Neale Perl, announced last week that he would retire at the end of next season.
• Looking for work in the music industry? Jammin’ Java in Vienna is looking for a full-time venue manager.
• 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.
• The show was this weekend, but here’s an interview with Coup Sauvage & the Snips [We Love DC].
• The show was this weekend, but here’s Nia Hightower’s interview with Les Nubians [DC Music Live].
• DC rapper SmCity now has a video for “Hate, Love, & Money” [Washington CityPaper].
• DC Music Download’s Local Listening Booth.
• Rohan Mahadevan’s Song of the Day: Big Freedia‘s “Azz Everywhere” [DCist].
• Hometown Sounds DC’s Local Music Video of the Day: Koshari‘s “Wake Me”.
• Replayed: Justin Jones‘s “My Father’s Gun” [DC Music Download].
• Stephen Bradley on Crystal Fighters at the Rock & Roll Hotel [Washington Times].
• Stephen Brookes on Deviant Septet at the Atlas Performing Arts Center [Washington Post].
• Joe Banno on the BSO‘s Mozart performance at Strathmore on 5/31 [Washington Post].
• Ross Bonaime on the Dandy Warhols at the 9:30 Club [Brightest Young Things].
• The Vinyl District is giving away a copy of 2:54‘s S/T on vinyl (contest ends Tuesday 6/5).
• Brightest Young Things is giving away a pair of tickets to see Monty Alexander at the Hamilton on 6/9 (contest ends Wednesday 6/6).
• NEW The Vinyl District is giving away a pair of tickets to see The Cribs at the Black Cat on 6/7 (contest ends at noon on Wednesday 6/6).
• Scene Trek is giving away a pair of tickets to The Cribs at the Black Cat on 6/7 (contest ends at 3 PM on Wednesday 6/6).
• Brightest Young Things is giving away a pair of tickets to see Gotye at Merriweather Post Pavilion on 9/30 (contest ends Thursday 6/7).
• Metal Injection is giving away tickets to the Rockstar Mayhem Fest featuring Slipknot, Slayer, and Motorhead at Jiffy Lube Live on 7/29 (contest ends “randomly” as the concert date approaches).
• DC101 is giving away a pair of tickets to see 311 and Slightly Stoopid at Jiffy Lube Live on 7/28 (contest ends Sunday 7/22).
• DC101 is giving away a pair of tickets to see OAR at Merriweather Post Pavilion on 8/10 (contest ends Sunday 7/29).
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