Friday, October 21, 2016


Austra at The Earl, October 30, 2011
Austra has a new album coming out and a new video released, and how you feel about the video will probably be dependant upon your attitude regarding insectivorous protein.

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Deep Sea Diver

Deep Sea Diver at The Earl, February 27, 2016
Deep Sea Diver have released a new video, this time for the song Wide Awake from their album Secrets, which reminds us we may need to add the record back to our Top 10 Albums of the Year list (how did it even fall off?).

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Diane Coffee

Diane Coffee will be performing at The Earl on Thursday, October 20.  Miss this show at your own risk.  Just sayin'.

Monday, October 17, 2016

Hiss Golden Messenger at Terminal West, Atlanta, October 16, 2016

The challenges of Rocktober:  go to a third consecutive show for the third consecutive night, then the next day, sit at the computer and try to think of something different and original to say, something we haven't already said or posted about a show before or at least for the past couple of nights.  Story about what time we got there and how many people were or weren't already present?  Nope, already done that a bunch of times.  Start with over-the-top praise of the headlining performer?  Been there, done that.  Run the pictures through the Prisma app and see how they look? Sure, why not?, again.  I know, post a pic of a Pokemon on the stage.

Alert readers will know we've done that before, too.  

Look man, just relax, don't try so hard, and just post a picture of the opening act, The Dead Tongues.

See?  That wasn't so hard, and now that we've posted that, we recall that it was an enjoyable set in the vein of the previous night's Adam Torres show - an acoustic singer-songwriter for people who don't necessarily like acoustic singer-songwriters.  See?  Now we're posting, and just like last night's show, we're off to a good start.

Hiss Golden Messenger has long been on our bucket list of shows we've wanted to see, but for various reasons, every time he came to town, we already had tickets to other shows, or were out of town ourselves, or something else would happen and we never made it.  We finally checked the box last night and as extra bonus points, frontman M.C. Taylor had a full band and wasn't performing solo, as he's often want to do. 

His backup band included The Dead Tongues on guitar and North Carolina folk-rock fixture Phil Cook (above and below) on Wurlitzer and guitar.

Overall, it was a great set of country-rock, Southern rock, 70s roots rock, and various other guitar-based musics, all skillfully delivered with Taylor's warm, accommodating vocals.

See?  That wasn't so hard, was it?.  Writer's block is what you make of it.  Now, before we get too cute or clever, we'll close this post out with a video of a song by headliner Hiss Golden Messenger and leave it at that, and maybe we can think of something more clever to say by the time of our next show (which thankfully isn't tonight - we need our sleep).

Sunday, October 16, 2016

Adam Torres, Thor & Friends at Eddie's Attic, Atlanta, October 15, 2016

It's not entirely unusual for us to go to a show for the opening act rather than the headliner, and last night's show was as good an example of that as any, although as it turned out, we really liked the headliner, too.

The opener and our reason our heading out was percussionist extraordinaire Thor Harris, performing as Thor & Friends.  We've seen Thor in the past performing with Shearwater and with Swans, two very different bands, and last night Thor & Friends put on a transcendent show of what might be called new music or minimalism, in the tradition of Steve Reich and Philip Glass. 

The music primarily centered around the sound of three marimba-like mallet instruments, apparently hand-made by Mr. Harris himself.  The mesmerizing sound of th epercussion was accompanied by Adam Torres, the headliner, on guitar, Aisha Burns on violin, and Dailey Toliver on bass and Wurlitzer, with Thor Harris contributing some occasional oboe.  Of particular note was Austin's Peggy Ghorbani playing, which, as Thor helpfully pointed out, included a solo playing in two different time signatures at the same time. 

Here they are in Austin at something called The Museum of Human Achievement (but looks suspiciously like someone's garage), playing with special guest Amanda Palmer.

The compositions were highly varied in texture and tempo, and one number, Grass Fire!, stood out due to both Thor's set up and introduction and to he opportunity for audience participation. 

We hadn't heard of headliner Adam Torres before, but were duly impressed by his AllMusic profile. During some of his stage banter, THor said that he typically didn't find singer/songwriters very interesting, but when he was dragged by friends to hear Torres in Austin, he had no choice but to walk up to to him after the show and ask, "How can I be of service?" Torres is the acoustic-based singer/songwriter for those who don't particularly care for acoustic-based singer/songwriters. 

Added bonus points: his backing band was Thor on drums, Aisha on violin, and Dailey on bass and keys.

Set standout was probably the song Juniper Arms, written about a near-fatal bicycle accident and its aftermath.

The falsetto, which is not used on all songs, is startling when first heard live, and Torres used it well to dramatic effect during the set.

It was a great night of artistic and enlightening music, and one of the most intriguing shows we've seen at Eddie's Attic (and between Nils Cline, Joseph Arthur, and Family Crest, we've seen some intriguing shows there).

Saturday, October 15, 2016

Joseph at Terminal West, Atlanta, October 14, 2016,

So, this is what Rocktober looks like in 2016 - weekdays where we can stay home and get some sleep before the next day's work, and weekends packed full of shows.

Last night's Friday night offering was Portland, Oregon's Joseph, but first Nashville's Ruston Kelly opened with some pretty generic Nashville stuff.

Kelly did manange to keep the audinece pretty quiet and attentive for his slow, somber set, and I'll give him points for wearing a Slayer t-shirt under his jacket.  But the audience, which consisted primarily of young women (the female-to-male ratio around me was about 8:1), was there to see Joseph.

It was our first time seeing Joseph, and to be honest, we've only heard a handful of songs, but they performed pretty much as we expected, with rousing, upbeat, harmony-laden, indie-folk anthems, delivered with good cheer and optimism, and some very thinly-veiled protests against Donald Trump and the grim, misogynistic mindset of his supporters. 

Joseph, if you're not aware, is a sister band, consisting of Natalie Closner and her younger twin sisters Meegan and Allison.

They closed the set with their single, White Flag, and the audience called them back on stage by repeating the wordless chorus over and over.  Their encore performance was arguably the best part of their set.

Like a lot of shows, there was clearly an emotional bond between the audience and the performers.  I think a lot of young women are inspired and motivated by Joseph's upbeat,postive attitude, and the fact that three sisters can make their mark in the music business.

For those of you following along at home, here's an acoustic sample of Joseph's music, followed by Cloudline, probably the first Joseph song we've heard.

Friday, October 14, 2016

The Radio Department

Image result for radio department running out of love

The Radio Department will be performing next year at The Earl on Friday, February 17.