February 2012 Archives

Rock 'n' Roll Call: Islands - A Sleep & A Forgetting

Share: Share on Facebook submit to reddit StumbleUpon Toolbar
 
A Sleep & A Forgetting

My other new favorite band this week is Islands and the album is "A Sleep & A Forgetting" and it's on Anti, an Epitaph alias. Why are there so many great bands from Canada? Don't know - but here's another one. This is Islands' fourth album since 2006, thus, making them extremely prolific. Frontman Nick Thorburn had a falling out with Miss Take - bad for him, good for us and we have this dreamy, sad album with stellar vocals to check out - an effort they aptly peg as doom wop - gotta love that, or what? "Cold Again" will live in your head for daze, among the other beautiful bummers smartly done.


Islands - A Sleep & A Forgetting by antirecords

Rock 'n' Roll Call: Mojack - Hijinks

Share: Share on Facebook submit to reddit StumbleUpon Toolbar
 
Hijinks

The new Mojack album is the aptly named "Hijinks" and it's no longer all the way from Lawndale, California - SST Records is now in Taylor, Texas - evidently on purpose. Anyway, Mojack is a power trio, guitars by Greg Ginn, drums by Khalil Hebert and sax by Tony Atherton. Although ten songs are listed, it might as well be one long one as this comes off as the overlong soundtrack to a French junkie's fever dream in 1954.

Rock 'n' Roll Call: R.E.M. - Part Lies Part Heart Part Truth Part Garbage 1982 - 2011

Share: Share on Facebook submit to reddit StumbleUpon Toolbar
 
Part Lies Part Heart Part Truth Part Garbage 1982 - 2011

R.E.M. is calling it a day after more than 10,950 of them or about 30 years worth - it's a greatest hits compilation called "Part Lies Part Heart Part Truth Part Garbage 1982 - 2011." No need to list all the biggies here - there's 40 of them from "Gardening at Night" to "Hallelujah." I like the first three albums the best up through "Fables of the Reconstruction" in 1985. One of the great American bands shows why this is so all in one place.


Rock 'n' Roll Call: John Prine - The Singing Mailman Delivers

Share: Share on Facebook submit to reddit StumbleUpon Toolbar
 
The Singing Mailman Delivers

John Prine has a new/old one - it's "The Singing Mailman Delivers" and it's on the artist's own label, Oh-Boy, which is often the reaction to a new Prine album. This one's not new - it's older than his debut - these are unearthed tapes of the tunes that made up his debut in 1970 + there's some live stuff. Just a mailman and a guitar, these sound a lot like the album versions with small variations only discernible to Prine's many listeners. A wry and witty songwriter, Prine is clearly an American treasure. "Sam Stone" will make you a fan even as dope made Sam dead. You need Prine's debut as well as "Diamonds in the Rough," "Sweet Revenge," "Common Sense" and "Bruised Orange," just for starters.

Rock 'n' Roll Call: Mark Lanegan Band - Blues Funeral

Share: Share on Facebook submit to reddit StumbleUpon Toolbar
 
Blues Funeral

My new favorite band and the best album of 2012 - so far - is from the Mark Lanegan Band - the album is "Blues Funeral" and it's on 4AD. It's bluesy flavored rock with haunting and lush production values with hooks galore - think an updated Jesus and Mary Chain vibe and maybe, some Love & Rockets level energy and going way back - maybe some Quicksilver Messenger Service John Cipolina-flavored guitars. "St. Louis Elegy" and "Phantasmagoria Blues" will live long and prosper in your CD player for daze - exceptional driving music.


Rock 'n' Roll Call: Mat Kearney - Young Love

Share: Share on Facebook submit to reddit StumbleUpon Toolbar
 
Young Love

Mat Kearney has a new one - it's called "Young Love" and it's on Universal Republic. Kearney seems stuck in the fun part of love - the falling in part - not the much longer falling out of phase that has given us so many wonderful sad songs. Kearney, so upbeat he could sell a raincoat to a cactus, seems to be channeling "Me and Julio Down by the School Yard" by Paul Simon, but as a career. He's got a cool voice and other times, that groovy Jack Johnson groove. The ladies will love Mr. K., if they don't already.


Rock 'n' Roll Call: The Black Keys - El Camino

Share: Share on Facebook submit to reddit StumbleUpon Toolbar
 
El Camino

There's a new one by the heavily hyped band, the Black Keys - the album is "El Camino" and it's on Nonesuch, and was rightly highly placed on many 2011 Best Of lists. It's pretty much, meat and potatoes rock 'n' roll - classic rock for the new millennium - the third song, "Gold On the Ceiling" sounds like Norman Greenbaum's "Spirit in the Sky" re-grooved four decades later and also, the spirit of Tom Petty also lives somewhere in the Black Keys. You - like so many others - will love them, another must-see band at 2012 Coachella.


What to know about where to go this week

Share: Share on Facebook submit to reddit StumbleUpon Toolbar
 

Wassup 805? Bill Locey here, neither in Studio 805 nor in Camarillo, but still gainfully employed by the Ventura County Star, at least for the next hour or two, kicking at my house, multi-tasking, writing about rock 'n' roll, watching "River Monsters" on Animal Planet with the sound off and petting my cat, Nope, who is on my lap and as usual, in the way and doing his fair share as part of the worldwide feline anti-literacy campaign.

So, did anyone else get vein-popping pissed off by the front page story in the Star on 15 February: "Need For 3,600 New Homes Seen For City"? Ventura needs 3600 more houses? Sez who? No, we don't need more people in "the Poinsettia City." If anything, we need 3600 fewer houses. This developer stooge, Chamber of Concrete-supported state law madness cannot stand. This odious Cal State Housing Element Law was passed in 1980 and only affects the six SoCal counties of which, we in Ventura County are the northern-most.

Passed thirtysomething years ago by pro-growth, and no doubt, developer-funded state officials, this law forces us to destroy our quality of life for transparent reasons of pure greed when it is painfully obvious that infinite growth in a finite environment is a loser. This law in addition to building more houses where none are needed offers an odious and ready made cop-out for developer stooges like those that run the city of Oxnard because they can and will say, "It's not us - the state is making us do this."

It's time for the Ventura City Council to stand up against this travesty and tell them, "Hell, no - we're not playing ball with the cement heads any longer. We care about our town too much to destroy it for no apparent reason." Irvine - rich folks from behind the Orange Curtain - have objected to this enforced phony growth mandate and sued the state. Our turn.

One thing about Republicans, they do have a playbook - Un-American and destructive though it may be - but they do adhere to the plan even as they remain complete strangers with the facts. On a national level, it's union busting, systematic voter suppression and destruction of the environment with fracking the latest big lie - remember clean coal?

Anyway, this mandated housing downer is based on existing and future needs and to that end, the cement lovers have been perpetuating their big concrete lie for decades. They tell us that California will have six million new locals by 2035 - really? Back when Ventura had 30,000 people, school kids were told that one day, it would be one solid city from San Diego to Santa Barbara and so, those cement shoes on our corpse in the casket, is coming closer to reality because of laws like this and pro-growth stooges in city government who perpetuate this scam.

That which hasn't happened yet, need not come true. Want to not have six million new Californians? Don't build the houses, no more state water and unplug the tourism bureau - their very existence daily degrades our quality of life by inducing more jerks from Bakersfield and the Valley to move here. Don't televise the Rose Parade to anywhere that's colder than here and all new Californians need to bring their own year supply of water. This cement shill scenario used to called boosterism at the turn of the century - 1900, that is - and look what happened.

We don't need another L.A. here - it's crowded enough right here, right now. Everyone who lives here already lives somewhere - why should we destroy our quality of life for someone we don't even know that doesn't live here yet? I think being in on our own murder is more of that endless, mindless and senseless we the sheeple scenario - not a very good idea. Everyone's kid does not deserve their own home - that part of the American Dream is over - get over it. We're on the front line here in the 805 - we passed the SOAR initiative - so that just means that all that boring farm acreage will be the last places to be paved?

No more hand wringing from city government - time to step up to the state and tell them, "No, thank you. We hate the Stinkin Giants and we don't need any more of their water. We're going to try to live within our means and that means your mandated housing program is a loser."

Time to contact your city government and tell them it's too crowded right now - don't do this. I mean, look who's going to be in favor of this: the Chamber of Concrete, destroying your quality of life since its inception. They are the Viet Cong in suits and never have our best interests at heart. There is a state bureaucrat, one Ma'ayn Johnson - I'm sure she'd love to hear your thoughts on the attempted murder of your hometown: johnson@scag.ca.gov.

OK, my friends, enough exposition for now, I'm here to talk to you wonderful folks about live music and to that end, if I had a faster car, a richer girlfriend or even one with a job, here's where I'll be lurking in the back this week. OK, tonight - Friday night, it's melodic metal madness with Megadeth and Motorhead at the Gibson Amphitheatre in Universal City. While up here in the 805 where we like it, Emilbus will be at the Watermark in Ventura - while down the block and down California Street to the Bombay Bar & Grill, it's CD release party time with the Pullmen - fully in tune with the economic realities by offering a CD and a beer for one Alexander Hamilton.

Yeah, and what about those gas prices? The oil companies have never made more money and now they're trying to torpedo a Democratic president? Shameful - and they're blaming Iran? Really? That has nothing to do with anything and it was BP and the CIA that booted out the democratically elected Iranian president Mossadegh and installed the pro-oil company Shah of Iran back in 1953 - the Iranians have been rightly mad at us ever since. Anyway, also on the bill with the Pullmen will be La Vonettes. And down at Yolie's in west Ventura, it's bluesy rock from Los Fabulocos while up the coast to S.B. doing a homegame at La Casa de La Raza down on Haley, it's Gardens and Villa.

Electric Touch

On Saturday down in Hell-A, just in case you happen to be circling Sunset like a buzzard looking for a place to park, there's Electric Touch at the Roxy, while over in the Valley to that former metal mecca with a new name, it's old school punk rock with Channel 3 and Mad Parade at Weber's Palace in Reseda. And still Saturday and up here in the 805 where we like it except in farmland-killing in Oxnard, it's the Mighty Cash Cats channeling the Man in Black at the Oxnard Moose Lodge. Down in the Ventura Harbor, Alastair Greene will demonstrate the guitar solo a time or three at Blackbeard's BBQ - while up Highway 33 to Ojai, Teresa Russell will be the female guitar shredder at the Hub.

On Sunday, doing better than the Lakers who should've kept Caron Butler, Trevor Ariza, Jordan Farmar and Lamar Odom - the Red Hot Chili Peppers will be at Staples Center in Los Angeles also on Monday.


While up here in the 805 where we still like it, the legendary R&B Bombers will be at Bombay. A few blocks away at Zoey's, it's the latest Kohli Rocks event with Two Minute Hero and Via Marina.

R&B Bombers

On Monday - he's gonna sell out SOhO in Santa Barbara - that would be Stephen Malkmus & the Jicks.

On Tuesday - one of the best shows of the week - he's one of the funniest guys you've never heard of - that would be Andy Borowitz along with seriously weird chick Sarah Silverman - they'll be at the Saban Theatre in Hell-A. A master of editing and precise comedy writing, you can download and read the Borowitz Report for free a couple of times a week. He says stuff like "Mitt Romney makes plastic look authentic." Borowitz is at least as funny as Jon Stewart and Bill Maher for those lefties out there.

Shawn Jones

OK, still Tuesday but up here in the 805, it's the Blues Harmonica Clubhouse happening every Tuesday at Bernadette's in Ventura and then there's !!!, yeah, just !!! or a.k.a, Chk Chk Chk which is how I get my cat's attention - anyway, check out my story in this week's Time Out - they'll be at SOhO on Tuesday night. All the way from Nebraska, 311 will rock the Ventura Theatre on Wednesday and that All Star Blues Jam thing is happening at the Bombay.

OK, finally on a Thursday, he's a Texas legend from his daze in the 13th Floor Elevators, it's Roky Erickson at the El Rey Theatre in Los Angeles, while over at the cavernous Canyon Club in Agoura, it's A Flock of Seagulls, while up here in the 805, Shawn Jones with a new album at hand, will be at the Watermark in Ventura and the happiest living man, Pato Banton, will be uplifting at the Crave in Ventura and Jonathan McEuen will be at the Big Buddha Lounge in Oak View. The end. Of that.

Rock 'n' Roll Call: Kina Grannis - Stairwells

Share: Share on Facebook submit to reddit StumbleUpon Toolbar
 
Stairwells

The new one from Kina Grannis is "Stairwells," a two CD set on One Haven Music. This album is so good - like Kathleen Wilhoite, Eliza Gilkyson, Gretchen Peters or name your favorite-female-singer/songwriter - yeah, that good, which is why I naturally assumed that this was her debut. It's not - it's her third album and there's 26 tunes on this one. It's introspective girl in love (or not) songs about the heart direct from her lips to your ears - plenty of hooks that will keep these tunes alive in your head for daze. Too bad she's from USC all the way from Rich Kid Central, Mission Viejo, Grannis is Japanese/English/French/Irish and German - further proof that racism is on the way out. In another few hundred years as everyone continues to have sex with everybody else, we're all going to look the same. We won't sound the same, however - music is a gift and Grannis stood in that line twice. "Message From Your Heart," "Gone" and so on - just so many good songs...


Rock 'n' Roll Call: Surfer Blood - Tarot Classics

Share: Share on Facebook submit to reddit StumbleUpon Toolbar
 
Tarot Classics

The new one might be the shark in Jaws favorite band, that would be Surfer Blood - it's a six-song EP on Kanine Records from October, last year. Actually it's four songs with two of them done twice, adding up to some laid back, groove-friendly indie rock with some early '60s British Invasion stuff in there with three-part harmonies led by frontman John Paul Pitts. Simple songs, simply played are hard to not like. Somewhere, Buddy Holly is nodding approvingly. These guys will be at the perfect place that fits their tunes, Muddy Waters in SB - that one's on the 23rd of February - might be worth the drive and Mac's is just a few blocks away


Surfer Blood Player by Surferblood

Rock 'n' Roll Call: Gardens & Villa - Gardens & Villa

Share: Share on Facebook submit to reddit StumbleUpon Toolbar
 
Gardens & Villa

The self-titled debut of Gardens & Villa is on Secretly Canadian, actually located in geographically challenged, Bloomingon, Indiana. Anyway, all the way from Santa Barbara, it's slo-mo, folk rock with just a couple of chords, sort of a freeze-dried early one-note Talking Heads. They give the impression - don't ask me how - that they would be better live as this disc shows promise but on this recording their reach exceeded their grasp. Check 'em out at the delightfully funky Casa De La Raza in S.B. on the 24th of this month.


Rock 'n' Roll Call: Janiva Magness - Stronger For It

Share: Share on Facebook submit to reddit StumbleUpon Toolbar
 
Stronger For It

Blues goddess Janiva Magness has a new one, "Stronger For It" and it's an advance (due out in March) on Alligator Records. Magness is a top-of-the-food-chain blues belter with awards to prove it as if a deal with Alligator is not sufficient proof. On this one, she transcends her material - most of which are by the numbers, generic blues tunes, but still worth checking out. Back in the day, Magness and her then-squeeze Jeff Turmes used to do Tuesday nights at Cafe Voltaire mostly for myself and the staff wasted on Belgian beer, playing tunes off their outstanding duo album, "It Takes One to Know One," about as good as it gets for low down dirty blues.

Rock 'n' Roll Call: Five Finger Death Punch - American Capitalist

Share: Share on Facebook submit to reddit StumbleUpon Toolbar
 

The new one from Five Finger Death Punch is 

American Capitalist

and it's on Prospect Park Records. This was the 23 second review. The typical heavy metal intro was rendered superfluous the moment the annoying screaming began. Was I witnessing my own demise with a self-inflicted lobotomy with a rusty screwdrivers and was that me screaming? Nope, it was them - seeya...

Rock 'n' Roll Call: Jesse Rhodes - Music From The Sun

Share: Share on Facebook submit to reddit StumbleUpon Toolbar
 
Music From The Sun

The latest from Santa Barbarian Jesse Rhodes is "Music From The Sun" and it's self-released. This guy's got it - not only did he find a rhyme for "San Simeon" ("oblivion") but he also notes on "Grapefruit Pie" that "...I'm sniffin' glue, and it smells like you..." Anyway, haven't seen this guy in more than 20 years or since he used to be in a cool and edgy pop band, the Sleepwalkers - way better than the creepy movie of the same name, although parts of Madchen Amick were memorable. Just about every song on this one is memorable as well - many of them are great - clever lyrics and hooks galore, and "What You Think" could be the soundtrack for Philosophy 1A. This one is among the Top 20 best albums of last year.

What to know about where to go this week

Share: Share on Facebook submit to reddit StumbleUpon Toolbar
 

The White Buffalo | Bonus Session from Pastime Productions on Vimeo.


Wassup 805? Bill Locey here, neither in Studio 805 nor in Camarillo, but still gainfully employed by the Ventura County Star, at least for the next hour or two, kicking at my house, multi-tasking, writing about rock 'n' roll, watching "River Monsters" on Animal Planet with the sound off and petting my cat, Nope, who is on my lap and as usual, in the way and doing his fair share as part of the worldwide feline anti-literacy campaign.

This is the week of the second annual Ventura Music Week - pretty much going off every night everywhere downtown in this here Poinsettia City. This is your chance to support local music for cheap - the line-up is on-line - but the epicenter of it all has to be the Local Rock Picnic, going off all day Saturday at Plaza Park, across the street from the Ventura Post Office, 93002. Even I can afford this one - it's free, however, I will be shooting traitors at the 2012 Civil War kick-off at Calico Ghost Town in Barstow, but you should go. You should also thank Brian Parra - the man who has done so much so long for so many with so little. There's two stages - here's a few bands you should definitely check out: Zachary James & the All-Seeing Eyes (1:30), Shaky Feelin' (2:00), La Vonettes (4:00), We Govern We (4:30), Ska Daddyz (5:20)...

OK, enough exposition - if I had a faster car, a richer girlfriend or even one with a job, here's where I'll be lurking in the back this week: If you feel like driving and don't mind risking getting towed or getting slammed for parking, it's reggae with Rebelution at the Hollyweird Palladium tonight and he's way better live than he is on a CD - it's Ryan Adams at Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles - two times, tonight and Saturday - he's really good live. While up here in the 805 where we like it, Houston Jones will be the main attraction at this month's Camarillo Cafe gig - that one's tonight, while over in farmland hating Oxnard, it's pure power pop from those Corsican Brothers at Whale's Tail and there's more of the same with the Pop-O-Matics at O'Leary's Side Bar in Ventura. From the parking lot, that big square cement

Zachary James

thing silhouetted against the night sky is the Ventura County Jail - drink accordingly. Downtown Ventura be rockin' as the Ventura Music Week thing kicks in - for example, Big Jugs, Iron Outlaw and Alligator Dave will be at the venerable Ventura Theatre and a few steps away, it's rockin' reggae with those Legalizers at the Watermark in Ventura. Dan Grimm will be at the Wine Rack and down "C" Street to the Bombay Bar & Grill, it's La Vonnettes, with two new voices and also Zachary James & the All-Seeing Eyes, Jackass and probably a few more. Down Santa Clara to Zoey's, it's that singing bovine, the White Buffalo along with Lee Koch. There's a good one at Yolie's with Hot Roux ably assisted by guitar god Albert Lee; and down on the Ventura Avenue, it's Kyle Hunt & King Gypsy at WAV Gallery.

Still more on Friday night - tonight - it's Milo Greene at Muddy Waters in Santa Barbara; while down on State Street, Drag the River will be at Velvet Jones and there's jam band nirvana across the street with Shaky Feelin', Quactus and the Maykers at Whiskey Richards. A few blocks north to SOhO, it's Howlin' Rain and finally on a Friday, it's Celtic superstars - must be those Chieftains at UCSB. Wow - is that enough for a Friday night and how can you be at ten places at once when you're not anywhere at all?

OK, it's Saturday and the wonderful but seriously underappreciated Michael On Fire will provide the soundtrack at the Silent Cinema in Hollywood. While back up here in the 805 where we like it (but Oxnard keeps paving it), the Big One is the Local Rock Picnic at Plaza Park across from 93002, the Ventura Post Office - there's bands all day, all brought to us for the ever affordable free by the one and only Brian Parra who has done so much with so little

Mouse Grey

for so long for so many. Mouse Grey will be at the Sans Souci in Ventura ( I am sans rat - a big one - which I bumped off last night with a trap in the kitchen). Across the street at the Ventura Theatre - it's another bunch of bands with New Liberty, Strand Quentin, and Preachers & Pornstars. Dressing better than you will - it's all 50 Sticks of Dynamite at Yolie's; while up the coast to Santa Barbara, it's old school punk rock with TSOL at Velvet Jones.

On Sunday, who better to channel Zappa than Zappa? Dweezil Zappa will resurrect his dad Frank's loony tunes and lots more during Zappa Plays Zappa Sunday night at the cavernous Canyon Club. While up here in the 805 where we still like it, there's Frank Barajas doing his one man pop band thing at Tutti's in Ventura - while down the wino stroll to Zoey's, it's 50 Sticks of Dynamite, Emy Reynolds and B. Willing James at Zoey's. And Garland Jeffreys - remember him - he'll be at SOhO. On Valentine's Day + 7, it's wonderful one man band Preston Smith at the Canyon Club in Agoura - that's Tuesday. On Wednesday, it's guitar pyrotechnics with Bruce Kimmel & Mark Masson at the Good Bar in Ventura and that All-Star Blues Jam thing will be happening at the Bombay and up the coast, it's former Toad boy, Glenn Phillips at SOhO.

On Thursday, it's bluesy rock from Shawn Jones at the Watermark in Ventura - Jonathan McEuen will be at the Big Buddha Lounge in Oak View; and worth the drive north, it's cool indie rock from Surfer Blood at Velvet Jones and Daniel Ellsberg, who released the Pentagon Papers during the Vietnam War, will no doubt draw thought provoking parallels to the WikiLeaks situation during his appearance at the Lobero Theatre in Santa Barbara, finally on a Thursday.

Rock 'n' Roll Call: Penguin Prison - Penguin Prison

Share: Share on Facebook submit to reddit StumbleUpon Toolbar
 
Penguin Prison

The new one by Penguin Prison is self-titled and it's on Downtown Records. It by-the-numbers techno pop that sounds like it fell out of the '80s timewarp or back when MTV actually played music videos, wasting the few good years of youth in a more visual manner as pretty boys played bouncy music and cared about their clothes. Penguin Prison is an alias for one dude, Chris Glover, whose songs are about as interchangeable as penguins themselves when such distinctions as "You got the ugly one" or "You got the smart one," have no discernible value.


Multi-Millioniare by Penguin Prison

Rock 'n' Roll Call: Cocaine Mustache - On the Mirror

Share: Share on Facebook submit to reddit StumbleUpon Toolbar
 

If you're like me and appreciate bands with funny names - then Cocaine Moustache certainly

On the Mirror

qualifies. Their album is "On The Mirror" and it's a one note, one joke effort on Reversed Records. It's loud and rude party music - one stoner soiree that's destined to attract the cops, who generally, do not party and demand that "fun" is a four-letter word. What can one expect from a band with a frontman named White Willie Sniffsum? It's also sort of screamy as if Jello Biafra were fronting a metal hair band from the '80s. This CD even includes a complimentary plastic straw just in case you do have too much money, but just think of their twist on that "Got Milk" commercial, probably picture perfect for the Speed Channel.

Review: Wilco at The Arlington

Share: Share on Facebook submit to reddit StumbleUpon Toolbar
 

By Bill Locey

Not surprisingly, Wilco sold out the venerable Arlington Theatre in Santa Barbara Friday night - a venue where the sound is always perfect. Every seat is a good seat, while out in the lobby, an added surprise: You get to expedite your own demise in addition to putting your cardiologist into a higher income bracket thanks to the freedom of the do-it-yourself butter option once you have surrendered the obligatory arm and/or leg for a bag of plain popcorn.

Few went to the art deco theatre for the grub however, even though many evidently came to spend an inordinate amount of cash at the beer garden - but Wilco is worth the drive, an American band on top of their game. The non-elbow bending patrons seated in the theatre were tottering on the verge of antsy after the openers, White Denim finished. They cheered the roadies a couple of times - a sure sign that it's time for the headliners to start.

Wilco started off in slo-mo mode with ``Reservations'' and proceeded to whiz through their vast repertoire of appealing songs. After a tune or two, it was clear that these guys have done this more than a few times as there was never a note out of place and Jeff Tweedy is a superb frontman with that perfect pitch voice, and Nels Cline was the classic sub dude on guitar - either subtle or raging as needed.

Wilco has been around since '94 or after the untimely demise of Uncle Tupelo - only Tweedy and bass player John Sirrratt are survivors of the original line-up. Tweedy seemed to be channeling Miles Davis as he didn't say a word for the first third of the show, finally going all Chatty Kathy and going on at great lengths to practice his Grammy acceptance that - win or lose - was not televised. The band's latest and eighth album, "The Whole Love'' has been out since September and is one of their best, especially, the hook-filled rocker, "Capitol City.''

Once thought to be leading practitioners of Americana, Wilco these days play all sorts of music from rock to country and power pop with plenty of controlled jams - all sort of a mild noodle with Tweedy's cool vocals. That's probably why everyone stood up and most remained so from the fourth song on, and one of their biggies, ``I Am Trying to Break Your Heart.'

White Denim opened the festivities at 8 o'clock and did the jam band thing - one song, one jam, one week as the tunes were indistinguishable from one another. One never knows but this time, the elbow benders didn't miss much but it was a short set - 35 minutes maybe - so White Denim was over before anyone could get tired of them.

And after the show down on Haley and Anacapa at Mac's, it's Friday there as well which means they get in a new supply of burritos, so we scooped up four Mac's burritos - good for a Saturday and Sunday breakfast and a good start of a wonderful weekend.

I passed on the 25 George Washingtons for a Wilco T-shirt since I have the face for radio and reinvested the money with Mac's. Oh, and Wilco did not win another Grammy - the Foo Fighters won for Best Rock Album.

Rock 'n' Roll: Greg Ginn and the Royal We - We Are Amused

Share: Share on Facebook submit to reddit StumbleUpon Toolbar
 
We Are Amused

Also making a comeback is SST Records - all the way from POB 1 in Lawndale, California - haven't heard from these guys since all those punk bands on vinyl back in the '80s. Once again, what year is it? Label founder Greg Ginn has a new one - it's Greg Ginn and the Royal We - the album is "We Are Amused" and you should have guessed the label by now. It's industrial strength, propulsive instrumental rock, projecting power - sort of like the soundtrack for an M1 Abrams tank rolling through some Third World village - yeah, that or it's a solid three a.m. speed freak soundtrack, just so right for scrubbing the bathroom tiles most frantically with a tired toothbrush.

Rock 'n' Roll Call: Foxy Shazam - The Church of Rock

Share: Share on Facebook submit to reddit StumbleUpon Toolbar
 
The Church of Rock and Roll

Wait a minute - so I.R.S. (the cool record label and not the scary Feds) is back? But back with Foxy Shazam? Evidently and their I.R.S. album is "The Church of Rock and Roll" and it's enough to convince the Pope to add "Sympathy for the Devil" onto his iWhatever. It's just dumbbell '80s hair band mundane metal. Screamy Shazam is more like it and fully as lame as Captain Marvel. This is the same label that, once upon a time, gave us legendary bands such as Oingo Boing, the English Beat, the Go-Go's, the Buzzcocks, R.E.M., the Cramps, Wall of Voodoo, Concrete Blond and now Foxy Shazam? Wha' happen, mon?


Welcome to the Church of Rock and Roll by foxyshazam

Rock 'n' Roll Call: The Devil Makes Three - Stomp and Smash

Share: Share on Facebook submit to reddit StumbleUpon Toolbar
 

The new one from the too big for Zoey's - the Devil Makes Three is a live one called "Stomp

Stomp and Smash

and Smash,"' recorded in Winona Ryder's hometown, Petaluma, California - up by Santa Rosa and thus, full of StinkinGiants fans. Too big these days for Zoey's - they may be too big for this time zone - this band completely shreds - imagine rednecks on fire - not like your high school band playing the them from "Deliverance" at halftime, but in a good way. Funny lyrics everywhere - smart ones, too - "I'm leanin' on my shovel in the graveyard of my dreams" from "Graveyard." And when they promise on the cover to "stomp and smash and slash and crash and bash and bust and burn," a line they stole from "Trouble Comin' Everyday" by Frank Zappa - they ain't lyin', just as you not be disappointed.

What to know about where to go this week

Share: Share on Facebook submit to reddit StumbleUpon Toolbar
 


Wassup 805? Bill Locey here, neither in Studio 805 nor in Camarillo, but still gainfully employed by the Ventura County Star, at least for the next hour or two, kicking at my house, multi-tasking, writing about rock 'n' roll, watching "River Monsters" on Animal Planet with the sound off and petting my cat, Nope, who is on my lap and as usual, in the way and doing his fair share as part of the worldwide feline anti-literacy campaign.

OK, enough exposition - if I had a faster car, a richer girlfriend or even one with a job, here's where I'll be lurking in the back this week:

Friday night, over in farmland-hating Oxnard, it's pure power pop from the Corsican Brothers

The Features

at the Whale's Tail, while it's the same menu/different venue from the Pop-O-Matics at O'Leary's Side Bar in Ventura. And Samson - the quarterback no more, but cool dude forever - he'll do his music thing at Zoey's in Ventura while up the coast to Santa Barbara, it's this week's awesome indie band, the Features - they'll be at the Velvet Jones on State Street and a few blocks north, it's Americana heavyweights Wilco ably assisted by White Denim at the Arlington Theatre in Santa Barbara. And finally, Friday night, it's the rootless but rockin' Paul Thorn at UCSB - he never plays the same place often enough to build a sizable following, despite being the coolest white guy from Mississippi since Elvis - which is why he should be at Zoey's - thus, few Gauchos and Gauchoettes will likely go to this one - too bad - Thorn is as good as anybody - sad, funny and rockin' all at once.

The Fray

On Saturday, it's corporate pop rock from the Fray at the legendary Troubadour in Hell-A, while - whatdaya want from life? How 'bout those Tubes at Canyon Club in Agoura Hills? While up here in the 805 where we like it, Betty Pattengale and Mike Harris probably won't do any Tubes' covers at Camarillo Library and Inna Rude Mood will channel Stevie Ray at a fundraiser for the Cape School, also in Camarillo. And those Mighty Cash Cats will channel the Man in Black at Logsdon's in Santa Paula.

Guitar shredder Alastair Greene will be up the stairs at the Watermark in Ventura also on Saturday and the Tom Corbett Band will play some bluegrass at the Live Oak Univeralist Church in Santa Barbara, also on Saturday.

On Sunday, welcome back John Sebastian - he of Lovin' Spoonful and cool round specs fame - he'll be at the Gibson Amphitheatre in Universal City, while back up here in the 805 where we still like it, check out the Bomb, exponentially more incendiary with the addition of Alastair Greene - that one's happening at the Bombay in Ventura and up the coast to S.B., Los Lonely Boys will do a benefit for the very lucky La Cumbre Junior High.

Los Lonely Boys

On Tuesday, she's perkier than a ferret in the Twinkie factory - it's Colbie Caillat at the Civic Arts Plaza in Thousand Oaks, while up in Ventura, it's the Emy Reynolds Band at Zoey's.

On Wednesday, playing some laid back rock but also some Robert Johnson blues, it's Big Head Todd & the Monsters at the cavernous Canyon Club, while up here in the 805, it's guitar pyrotechnics with Bruce Kimmel & Mark Masson at the Good Bar in Ventura and that All-Star Blues Jam thing will be happening at the Bombay and Frank Barajas will do his one-man-band thing at the Big Buddha Lounge in Oak View.

And finally on a Thursday, the sometime psychedelic Lenny Kravitz will be cool at phonehead nirvana which is Club Nokia in Los Angeles, and one more time - it's Frank Barajas at Tutti's in Ventura and Jonathan McEuen will be at Big Buddha Lounge, also Thursday. The end. Of that.


Heartbeat by The Fray


Content by The Features

Rock 'n' Roll Call: The Unthanks - Diversions Vol. 1

Share: Share on Facebook submit to reddit StumbleUpon Toolbar
 
Diversions Vol. 1

It may or may not be the response when your grandma gives you a Barry Manilow CD for your birthday, but rather The Unthanks is a band - two sisters in fact - Rachel and Becky Unthanks - who create most heavenly harmonies on these low-fi, low tech Lillith Fair-friendly sad girl medieval sounding tunes. The album is called "Diversions Vol. 1" and it's on Rough Trade. It's a live performance as they channel the songs of Robert Wyatt and Antony & the Johnsons, whoever they are. Exceptional vocals - too mellow for me, but maybe not for you...

Rock 'n' Roll Call: Dion DiMucci - Tank Full of Blues

Share: Share on Facebook submit to reddit StumbleUpon Toolbar
 
Tank Full of Blues

He's in the Rock 'n' Roll Hall of Fame after being a rock star since the '50s - it's Dion - Dion DiMucci, once upon a time frontman from doo wop kings, Dion & the Belmonts - many regard "I Wonder Why" as the greatest rock song of all time, and certainly one of the best doo wop songs ever. Anyway, Dion has a new one - it's called "Tank Full of Blues" and it's on Blue Horizon. As much as I wanted to love this one - and I do love Dion - but this one is more or less generic blues with Dion's voice. "Holly Brown" is about the best but the rest are solid but no big deal. If you want some recent rockin' blues, check out Seasick Steve Black Joe Lewis. In an unrelated note, Dion was a hilarious interview - he said, "My neighborhood was so tough, even the nuns had tattoos..."

Rock 'n' Roll Call: The Strange Boys - Live Music

Share: Share on Facebook submit to reddit StumbleUpon Toolbar
 

Here's another one from last year, it's "Live Music" by The Strange Boys, an Americana

Live Music

outfit out of Austin, Texas - it's on Rough Trade Records. These guys aren't strange but do sound sort of drunk and they gently crash and bash and noodle along on these country rockers, straight from the garage to you. If you were lucky enough to walk into a bar and these guys were playing - score. Maybe a Lone Star State version of the Gear Daddies - or not - I love "Omnia Boa" (whatever that means). It's their rocker, sort of like the Beatles doing a country rock tune. These Strange ones could convince the good Doctor S. as well as the dread Dormammu to temporarily bury the lightning bolts and enjoy the show. As much as I hate almost everything about Texas, they sure do have a bunch of good musicians - here's more.


Rock 'n' Roll Call: The Horrors - Skying

Share: Share on Facebook submit to reddit StumbleUpon Toolbar
 
Skying

It's from last summer but if we haven't talked about it, then it's not late or whatever and in any case, the latest by The Horrors new one is "Skying" and it on XL Recordings. It's the third album by these BritPoppers who could probably use a clock for Christmas. They're about 25 years beyond fashionably late but if it were 1987 again and MTV actually had music videos instead of annoying Joisey Joiks, these Horrors would be rock stars playing their subtle and surreal shoegazer pop that just flows like the psychedelic beginning of one of those old Hammer Films Poe adaptions. Pick a song - they're all hypnotic and bitchen and Faris Badwan is a capable frontman. My new favorite band - this week.


What to know about where to go this week

Share: Share on Facebook submit to reddit StumbleUpon Toolbar
 

Wassup 805? Bill Locey here, neither in Studio 805 nor in Camarillo, but still gainfully employed by the Ventura County Star, at least for the next hour or two, kicking at my house, multi-tasking, writing about rock 'n' roll, watching "River Monsters" on Animal Planet with the sound off and petting my cat, Nope, who is on my lap and as usual, in the way and doing his fair share as part of the worldwide feline anti-literacy campaign.

OK, enough exposition - if I had a faster car, a richer girlfriend or even one with a job, here's where I'll be lurking in the back this week:

Tonight at the cavernous Canyon Club in Agoura, it's one third of the Stray Cats, Lee Rocker, who'll be twanging away some tattooed, greaser-friendly rockabilly rock. And pet your cat - make it glad it's not a stray cat. While over in farmland hating Oxnard where the city council hates that boring agriculture more than Fox News hates the truth - it's pure power pop and plenty of it with the Corsican Brothers at the Whale's Tail. And over in Ventura on Main Street at the Good Bar, it's jam band nirvana with Mark Masson and Shaky Feelin' while down at the Bombay, it's Jahman Soul and Nikki - just Nikki - while up a few blocks on Santa

Jim Bianco

Clara, it's singer/songwriter Jim Bianco at Zoey's. Guitar wiz Pete Peterson will be at Yolie's across from Avenue Von's and up Highway 33 to Ojai, Eric Bibb will play that guitar at the Matilija Auditorium. Still Friday night but up the coast to S.B. it's blues from the Preachers at the Brewhouse down by the train tracks on State Street in Santa Barbara, a place where I discovered to my elbow bending surprise that I had missed my calling and wasted my life by not majoring in fermentation sciences in college. Yes - that is a major - making beer. Several blocks north on State there's pure power pop from the Tearaways - they'll be joined by - remember them? the Cowsills at SOhO in Santa Barbara and finally on a Friday, Alastair Greene will tear it up blues guitar style at the Carr Winery, also in Santa Barbara.

On Saturday down in Hell-A, where hopefully someone will buy the Dodgers - they may have ditched Larry and Curly and any pretense to capitalization skills, but moe will inspire the leftover Deadheads still spinning aimlessly without Jerry along with related jam band fans - all to be transacted at phonehead nirvana, which would be nowhere else but Club Nokia. Longtime Zoey's favorite soul man, Chris Pierce will be the at Hotel Cafe in Hollyweird -

Chris Pierce

don't get towed. While up here in the 805 where we like it, Steve White & the Barstool Pigeons will play some bluesy rock at Blackbeard's BBQ down at the Ventura Harbor and read my interview with Mr. W. in this week's Time Out. Mossman, evidently no relation to the Swamp Thing will be at the Sans Souci in Ventura and all those Shoemaker Brothers will be at the Bombay.

Tons of famous rock stars have recorded her songs, so an endless stream of mailbox is money assured + she has seven solo albums and she sings as well as Eliza Gilkyson - it must be Nashville songbird Gretchen Peters at Zoey's in Ventura, also Saturday. Check out my story in this week's Time Out - proof positive that I'm hardly making any of this up.

On Sunday, Frank Barajas will do his solo pop rock thing at Tutti's in Ventura near the ancestral home of the Top Hat - by the way, I ate at the new Top Hat by my old school, Ventura High, whose basketball chicks just wasted San Marcos 71-11 - the new Top Hat is just fine. And also on Sunday, it's another cool Club Mercy gig with the Melodians at SOhO.

On Monday, it's CD release time with Hot Roux featuring world class guitar player Albert Lee at Ronnie Mack's Barn Dance in Burbank.

On Wednesday, it's one of the best bands in the world - that would be Coldplay, also at phonehead nirvana - Club Nokia in Hell-A; while up here in the 805, where we still like it, you can check out some jam action with Bruce Kimmel & guitar wiz Mark Masson at the Good Bar and that All-Star Blues Jam is happening at the Bombay.

And finally on a Thursday, Happens Again happens again at the Sans Souci in Ventura, and it's reggae time with the Long Beach Liberators at the Crave Lounge in Ventura. Jonathan McEuen will play something cool at the Big Buddha Lounge in Oak View and the Animal Liberation Orchestra will be at SOhO in S.B. The end.


Rockin' Roll Call
Bill Locey reviews music for the Ventura County Star, when he isn't reenacting the history of this great nation or teaching it to incarcerated youth.
He is the tall guy lurking in the back of all the local rock shows.
Click here for an archive of all past entries ยป