Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Some Announcements and It List: Wednesday

Hey best friends, it's been a little while. How are you? Some of you might have noticed that I haven't been doing a lot of writing around here lately, and I wanted to let you know why. A couple weeks ago, I moved from Dallas to a temporarily undisclosed city far away from Texas, and I've had to take some time to get settled into a new apartment, a new job, and essentially a new life all together, and I simply haven't had the time to contribute much to this blog. Sorry about that.

But before I left, myself, DL and the other WSJR contributors spent some time discussing what would be done once I departed. After pondering many different options, we decided that instead of throwing a goodbye party and calling it quits, we would try something completely new with the website, not only to keep things exciting for us, but also to provide something more entertaining for all of you.

Over the past few months, we've been making friends in a small handful of exciting cities around the country, and we've decided to join forces with some new people and expand the scope of this website to include coverage of the music scenes in at least three new cities, including the one I'm currently living in, as well as to provide a more national focus on music we're (and hopefully you're) interested in from all over the country. We'll still continue to provide the same kind of substantive coverage of DFW and Denton music that you've seen here for the past (gulp) three and a half years, and I'll still be contributing to the site fairly frequently, along with DL and a group of smart new local writers to whom you've recently been introduced. So in short, we won't be sacrificing any local coverage as part of this transition, but simply adding to what we already do, and hopefully helping to raise the profile of local DFW/Denton bands in several new cities with thriving music scenes.

I don't want to give too much away right now because we'll have a more formal announcement for you in the next few weeks explaining which cities we'll be covering and how we're going to do it, but for now, let me just tell you that I'm very excited about our plans, and I think most of you will be very pleased with the way things go around here over the next few months.

Anyway, thanks to all of you for making this summer the most highly trafficked season in the history of this website, and I hope you all will stick around to see what we're going to do from here on out. And oh yeah, one more thing-- by popular demand, It Lists will now appear in the morning or early afternoon each day in order to give you more time to see which shows are the easiest to make fun of. Here's today's list:

Ra Ra Riot/Maps & Atlases/Princeton (The Granada): As I was reading a couple things about Ra Ra Riot last night, I noticed that they had recorded a session for Daytrotter back in 2007, and this seemed like an important thing to mention because Daytrotter is an important thing, right? The weird part was that as I sat and thought about it, I realized that I didn't even really know what the hell Daytrotter actually was. Criminal for a blogger, right? I mean, Gorilla vs Bear and Pitchfork and Stereogum and all those places talk about it all the time, and I know its a pretty big deal in the world of "Indie Rock" and all that, but I've just never taken the time to really look at it since it always seems to feature like a recording of St. Vincent playing a cover of an Irish drinking song or some garbage. Actually, I don't even know if St. Vincent has ever recorded with Daytrotter, its just a figure of speech.

I guess the point in bringing all this up is to demonstrate my feelings of detachment from the kind of music Ra Ra Riot makes. This is Indie Rock with a capital "I," and although most of it is pleasant enough, all of it feels like its just kinda sitting there, waiting for its chance to start being played over the loudspeakers at Banana Republic instead of Urban Outfitters because those are the people who still actually buy CDs, right? Influences seem to range from Interpol to Coldplay to Arcade Fire, with nods to Elliot Smith and 90's Brit Pop and Post-Punk, and I wasn't kidding when I said it's pleasant enough because it is. But much like Daytrotter, I kinda know what its like and I don't have a problem with it, but I also know that I don't have to pay it all that much attention in order to conclude that I don't really give a shit.

Chicago's Sung Tongs and Elephant 6 influenced Maps and Atlases open, and they're a bit more interesting.-(SR)

I want to add that Princeton is one of the few bands I've seen recently where I felt that the record sounded better than their live show, which was fine, it just didn't capture some of the little subtleties and influences apparent on the recording that I'm sure they would want to convey through a performance.-(DL)

Social Junk/Mincemeat or Ten Speed/Dick Neff/Guilt Trip/Corporate Park/Joey Lawrence Gets A Coke Problem (House Of Tinnitus): Philadelphia's Social Junk certainly don't make pop music, but they are still probably one of the most accessible bands to have ever set foot in House of Tinnitus, even if you'd never use the word "accessible" to actually describe their music. Confused? Well, this really says more about House of Tinnitus' challenging bills than it does about the band, but its still important to note because it might provide you with just a glimse into Social Junk's sound-- this is found sound happy, largely instrumental psychedelic music that ranges stylistically from peaceful bird chirping and drones to more rhytmic, early industrial influenced experiments with elements of tribal percussion and general abrasion. This is tough, interesting music to be sure, but the group's quiter moments might just be right up the alley of a few people who don't often listen to "harsh noise," for lack of a better term. Social Junk is an excellent group that shouldn't be missed, especially in one of the most intimate and welcoming spots in the area.

Mincemeat or Teenspeed are another fantastic Philadelphia group with an eclectic set of influences ranging from Afro Funk (including Konono No 1) to harsh noise to 8 bit to psychedelic folk, all of which come together incredibly well, surprisingly enough, resulting in one of the more interesting bands I've stumbled across this year. We highly recommend that you show up early to catch them.-(SR)

Nobunny/Video/Hunx And His Punx/War Party (Mable Peabody's): Another show definitely worth checking out in Denton tonight, featuring the masterful pop songwriting of Nobunny, a guy who always backs up his performances with a rotating cast of able musicians, including local Payton Green. Hunx and His Punx includes the kind of great lyrical content that often occurs when punk bands tackle gay themes, and there's no doubt in my mind that Video will put on a flawless show. -(DL)

Binary Sunrise (Good Records): Show celebrating the release of the group's new recording which is released on the venue's label, Good Records Recordings. -(DL)

Western Giants/Jacob Metcalf/Young Adult Fiction (The Cavern)

Wind Suit Party with Ghost Pizza/Land Mammals/90210hh!/Vessels (Hailey's): Free entry when wearing "appropriate attire." Presented by We Made Out Once.

NOTE: "Decades" is canceled at Rubber Gloves tonight, due to DJ No Dad's illness.


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