Archive for the ‘Music’ Category

MusicFest NW – A Preview

MusicFest NW (September 3-6)Musicfest NW hits town this week (Sept 3-6) and the lineup has some promising names. I’m sure the crowds will be swarming over radio friendly Vampire Weekend (9/5 – 10:30pm @ The Crystal Ballroom) and all the cool kids will be at TV on The Radio (9/5 – 11:30pm @ Roseland), but the band I’m most looking forward to is Monotonix (9/5 – Midnight @ Satyricon).

Seriously who wouldn’t want to see a hard rock band from Israel band who crowd surfs while playing drums, lights their stuff on fire and generally rocks. There are bands which act insane… I believe Monotonix simply is.

Other bands which caught my eye (or rather ear) include: John Vanderslice (9/5 – 9:30pm @ The Crystal Ballroom), one of my local favorites Menomena (9/6 – 11pm @ The Crystal Ballroom) The Battles (9/4 – 7pm @ Wonder Ballroom)… and don’t forget Sir Mix-A-Lot (9/6 – 12:30 am @ The Fez). I intend to catch more bands this week after doing some scouting on their myspace pages.

Local 94.7 FM / KNRK has been of little help sifting through the line up. The so called ‘alternative’ station has been too busy playing David Bowie, The Cars and Tom Petty to actually lend some support to one of Portland’s biggest annual music events. Ironically it’s KEXP from Seattle who will be hosting some in studio sessions at the Doug Fir during the event (schedule here). Be sure to lend KEXP your support, they actually PLAY alternative music!

More Prids info.

According to The Prids’ myspace page, here’s the latest posted on there:

“Our dear friends The Prids – David, Mistina, Joey and Maile – and two of their significant others – Kristin and Chris – were in a serious accident early Sunday evening while en route to Los Angeles on tour. A tire blew and they lost control of the van and it rolled several times. David was airlifted from the scene of the crash, he suffered a broken collar bone, broken ribs and has 6 staples in his head. Chris broke his arm and may have spinal injuries. Maile has a broken vertebra and toe and a severe cut with stitches on her knee. Joey broke ribs, Mistina suffered a concussion, and Kristin is in similar shape.

As of late that night, everyone had been released from the hospital but David had to go back in the middle of the night and was released Monday afternoon. Maile had to return to the emergency room Tuesday afternoon but was released later that day. She will be staying in Fresno for a short time then flying home. Friends of the band, Marshal and Kiisu, drove down from Portland and will be driving the rest of the band home today.

A special paypal account has been set up to help out and donate directly to The Prids. There have been so many generous donations made already as well as fundraisers organized and the band is extremely thankful! However, help with mounting expenses is still badly needed. There are still thousands of dollars in hospital bills to help cover (most of the group doesn’t have health insurance!) If you can’t help out monetarily, please repost this info on your blogs, etc. Thanks! ”

Also, I’ve been informed by several people (Divebarwife included) that there will be a benefit this Sunday at one our fast becoming favorite little places to hang, Plan B, for The Prids.

More on that here

The Prids

One of the few people I’ve met in my old visits (you know, before I moved here) to Portland was Mistina, the bassist for The Prids. She was kind and friendly and she drank with me, which is always a sign of a good friend to be, no?

Well today I have to sadly report that The Prids, whilst on tour in California near Fresno, were in an accident that was really quite bad. The van, I was told, blew a tire and they lost control of it. The van went off the highway and rolled several times leaving the van wrecked, the equipment broken and the band members rather beat up. One band member, when last I was given information, was still in the hospital, but the others were released after being treated for various broken bones, cuts and bruises. Unfortunately, they are left with little to no money to get them home, pay hospital bills and buy new equipment, not to mention a van.

A couple of close friends of theirs rented a van to drive down to see what they could help possibly salvage and to see what help they could be. Any help would do and if you’d like to donate to the local band you can contact

Channel 12 ran a small story on it here

That DCI Time of Year

So it’s time again for my annual DCI post – this year we are lucky enough to have both the Blue Devils – the 2007 champs – and Phantom Regiment who brought in 4th place last year. Our own Oregon Crusaders will of course be there, and this year it’s the only show in Oregon and Washington.

Words cannot explain… just watch

P.S. none of that footage is sped up. They really move that fast.

Tuesday – July 8
Hillsboro Stadium

Les San Culottes Stole The Show

So I’m a little late on this, then I had a computer crash issue and yadda yadda yadda – but it’s been in my head since leaving the Doug Fir on Monday night and I have to get it out!

My husband and I headed over there to see The Detroit Cobras – a fantastic garage soul band. They were one of the first bands he introduced to me when we first started dating an I’ve been a big fan ever since.

I’d never heard of the opening act, Les Sans Culottes, but they sounded interesting so we had a few drinks on the patio then headed downstairs to check them out. According to their website they’ve been together since 2001, but have primarily played in the NYC and LA areas, so they didn’t really have a fan base here. The crowd did the typical Portland thing and stood back, watching arms folded. The stage was full – seven members of the band – but they filled it even more with their stage presence. Most of the songs were sung in French – including versions of “These Boots Are Made For Walking” and “My Sharona” – and when they spoke they used French accents – despite being from Brooklyn – and by the time they finished playing, the floor was full and booties were shakin’!

When The Detroit Cobras took the stage, the first words out of lead singer, Rachel Nagy’s mouth were, “Let’s get this over with so we can drink.” My heart sank. The last time I’d seen them they were less than stellar – but I’d seen them many times before and they were great. Their new album is really good, so I was hoping that last time was just a bad night. Now I wasn’t so sure. The sounded good – but just very well rehearsed with little enthusiasm. They could have been playing in the studio instead of in front of several hundred eager fans. As the night progressed, they did liven up – and it turned out to be a really good night. But Les Sans Culottes absolutely stole the show. Even when the Detroit Cobras were playing, the bass player and one of the female singers from Les Sans Culottes rushed to the front of the crowd and just started dancing their asses off – and looked like they were having more fun than the Cobras.

Please – Les Sans Culottes – come back to Portland again soon!

Summer Concerts & Polite Portlanders

I’ve been out to Edgefield a number of times – for weddings, for work functions, for their annual Halloween party, just to go have some food and drinks with friends – but I’d never been to one of their concerts until this past weekend. My girlfriend and I went out for 94.7’s Pet Aid – benefiting the Oregon Humane Society and Dove Lewis. And other than the fact that Ticketmaster continues to rape us with service fees – it was a great show!

The show started early at 6 – although we weren’t terribly interested in the first band – so we bolted out right after work knowing we’d have to fight our way out I-84. Once we arrived, we bought tickets from a ‘friend’ (paying $14 over face-value of tickets, but still saving ourselves $12 in ‘convenience fees.’), then headed down to the winery for some tasting. We tried several McMennamins wines that I’d never had before – Julia was a great – then headed back out to the venue.

For concerts, the entire northeast part of the lawn is fenced off with the stage set up at the far north end of the lawn. Up on the top by the Little Red Shed are the food and drink vendors (and porta-potties!) then everyone sits down the hill. Because they started so early, all three bands were finished before it got dark, and while I’d say it was mostly adults – there were some little ones running around too. And the adults – ever so Portland polite. People had their blankets to sit on – but up toward the front people were standing and dancing around – and not stepping on anyone’s blankets. It made me giggle when I realized it. All these groups of people standing around watching, and singing along and dancing – with pockets where no one stood – because there was a blanket spread out on the lawn. Gotta love Portlanders!

All in all though – it was a great night. And despite the ridiculous pricing – I’m a big fan of Edgefield concerts for a nice summer night out. Billy Idol will be there two weeks from tonight – and so will I!

Rebel Drones at the Doug Fir

Election night in Portland is a crazy time. I have been away on vacation for a couple of weeks, so missed all of the pomp and circumstance leading up to yesterday. I did get back in time to fill out the ballot though and drop it off. We even got our new roommate registered on the last possible day so he could vote. Ahh, democracy!

After hitting a couple of election parties and even arriving at the Jupiter hotel to shake Sam Adams’ hand just before he gave his winning speech, we took in a show. Rebel Drones, a new band from right here in Portland was opening for Dead Meadow, a favorite of ours. Rebel Drones first showed Portland what they had been working on back on New Years at the East End. I was unable to attend, so had been waiting with baited breath for last night’s show. The Rebel Drones is made up of some music veterans including Colin Hegna of Federale and BJM and Matt Hollywood of The Out Crowd and BJM. With 3 guitars, a bass, keyboard and drums, they had a formidable sound. I just sat back smiled and took it in, hoping this band gets an album out soon so I can play it every waking minute of the day. I have described this type of music as “wall of sound with many layers,” but it is more than that. In a word – it is beautiful.

So, even though my candidate – Steve Novick – didn’t win, the night was excellent. The Rebel Drones put on a great show followed by an amazing set by Dead Meadow. Next time they are in town, you gotta check them out.


Originally uploaded by dieselboi

Michale Graves – Friday at Hawthorne Theater Balcony

Michale Graves is castor oil to hipsters. Strike one – he had the audacity to replace Glen Danzig in a reformed Misfits during the 90’s. Strike two – his fame has come largely through the “horror punk” movement – not exactly the first choice in music for the hip ones. Strike three – he openly supported George W. Bush during the 2004 election.

Well, I’m here to tell you that the hipsters are wrong – Michale Graves is cool and you should go see him this Friday. Yes, he fronted a Danzig-less, reformed Misfits during the mid to late 90s. He also wrote a lion’s share of the material, much of which is pretty good. And if Jerry Only came to you, a 19 year old kid, and asked you to front the Misfits, would you say no?

Yes, he came to fame by playing “horror punk”. For those not familiar with the formula, it largely involves wearing black, face paint, and singing about things like bats, zombies, and vampires. Done badly, it’s embarrassing. Done right, it’s a blast – the musical version of watching a 1950’s B-movie. Graves did it right.

Yes, he supported George Bush in 2004. Last time I checked, it was okay to disagree on some things. Some people may be willing to discredit someone’s artistic output because they’re not okay with who they put a checkbox next to in the ballot box. I’m not one of those people.

Finally, the guy has managed to release some varied and very interesting material since leaving the Misfits in 2000. The first album (“Web of Dharma”) was, perhaps, the perfect coda to the 1990’s “alternative” era. It’s one of the best albums that nobody’s ever heard. If you manage to find a copy, I highly recommend picking it up. Graves followed up with “Gotham Road” (an interesting mix of melody and crushing heavy metal), “Punk Rock is Dead” (a swaggering return to the “new Misfits” sound and a pointed “f you” to detractors), and “Return to Earth” (an honest but hit and miss attempt to broaden his sound). The latest, (“Illusions”) is a largely acoustic collaboration with Damien Echols of the West Memphis Three.

Graves’ albums have been either self-releasing or released through small labels for the better part of a decade now, but he’s still somehow able to launch national tours on an almost yearly basis. And no former Misfit (with the exception of Glen Danzig) has released such a prolific and varied output. Graves really marches to the beat of his own drummer. And what’s more indie than that?

Thanks Portland!

I was very proud of Portland this weekend. One of my good friends had a friend in visiting from Ireland, while we were at work she spent the day taking advantage of the weak dollar and shopping her little heart out up and down Hawthorne, Trendy-Third and Lloyd Center. Friday night was then dinner out before we headed over to the Doug Fir for a show. VHS or Beta were the headliners – it was the second time I’d seen them there, and they didn’t disappoint – the opening acts Another Cynthia and Tiger City were also fantastic – and of course the Doug Fir is just a great place to see a show. So we had a great time with what we were doing – but really I was so proud of our people.

Our Irish friend was in the states because she’d gone to Coachella with other friend, after that she spent a few days in L.A. – and about midway through Friday evening she told us how sad it is that when Europeans come to visit the States that they concentrate so much on L.A. and N.Y.C. – because that night, that wasn’t even over yet, was way more fun than the entire time in the LA area. We made new friends with boys and girls, meeting and chatting up with all kinds of strangers outside on the patio and downstairs dancing to the bands. She was overwhelmed with how friendly everyone was – and that they didn’t make snap judgments on people based on appearance. She was heading up to Vancouver B.C. Saturday morning, so she got to spend less than 48 hours in Portland, but couldn’t stop talking about how much she loved it here, and that next time she comes she’s skipping California and spending her time in Portland.

Thanks Portland – for being good people!

Win Free Tickets to the Submarines on Friday @ Dante’s – updated

As part of the Raiders of the Lost Ark: The Adaptation leadup, I got an email from Matt, one of the organizers.  One of their sponsors is giving away some free tickets for the Submarines show at Dante’s this Friday.  Read on:

Thanks to Metblogs for supporting the Raiders of the Lost Ark: The Adaptation / Submarines at Dante’s Ticket Giveaway.
Nettwerk Music Group’s (Ladytron, Junkie XL) own Submarines are playing Dante’s on Friday, March 28.
And Nettwerk is giving away two pairs of tickets to see The Submarines at Dante’s to help promote Portland’s non-profit event, Raiders of the Lost Ark: The Adaptation at the Hollywood Theatre on April 18 and 19. This event raises funds for the
Austin Miller Scholarship Fund at Film Action Oregon.

People have probably heard The Submarines’ version of “Little Boxes” on Showtime’s hilarious Weeds as well as in the Season Four finale of Nip/Tuck where the lead actors lip synced their song, “Brighter Discontent.”

And now The Submarines are touring in support of their upcoming release Honeysuckle Weeks which hits in May.
For those new to the Subs, the band’s core is duo John Dragonetti and Blake Hazard. After meeting in 2000, John and Blake were romantically involved while supporting each other’s bands until the couple broke up in 2004. They continued to write music together but found that their new songs all dealt with the sadness of being apart. And so after getting back together, they launched The Submarines as their new joint music venture.

We’ll be posting a micro-interview with John and Blake in the next day or so.

So if anyone is interested in winning a pair of tickets to see The Submarines at Dante’s on Friday, March 28, they can leave a comment with the answer to this little bit of Raiders of the Lost Ark trivia…

What deliciously mustachioed actor was originally cast as adventurer Indiana Jones before Harrison Ford eventually took over the role?” – tickets won!

“What pair of illicit, star-crossed lovers, whose amour could, sadly, never be, make a very brief and clandestine yet anachronistic appearance in Raiders of the Lost Ark?”


Anyone know?  If so, leave a comment and I’ll forward your answer on to Matt.  Also, remember, Dante’s is now non-smoking.

Raiders of the Lost Ark: The Adaptation – April 18 and 19 at The Hollywood Theatre to benefit the Austin Miller Scholarship Fund at Film Action Oregon

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