White Crosses (Sire Records)
Release Date: June 8, 2010
For Against Me! frontman Tom Gabel, sometimes you have to get the hell, out just to find your way back in. The past 12 years have seen Gabel rise from acoustic folk-punk gunslinger in the dives of Gainesville, Florida to releasing Against Me!’s four searing, blood-smeared slices of scrappy punk. The last of which, 2007’s New Wave, was the major label debut, one that Spin magazine anointed as their Album Of The Year. And while Gainesville was home, Gabel felt the walls closing in when touring for New Wave came to an end. So he split. With his wife, he left behind the “didja-hear-about-so-and-so” insular Gainesville world for the sleepy beach town of St. Augustine, wandering the streets and driving dusty back roads: searching, pining, hoping for inspiration.
He found it in spades. The result is White Crosses, as powerful and as bold a rock record as one can imagine. The band ¬– Gabel, guitarist James Bowman, bassist Andrew Seward and new drummer George Rebelo – roar like fighter jets screaming over a stadium on the anthemic title-track (with its shout along line about smashing the 4,000 crosses on a local church’s lawn, ones that signify the number of babies aborted each day in the U.S.). Joining that is the escapist fury of “Spanish Moss,” and the short stick of dynamite, “Rapid Decompression.” New Wave eschewed some of the roughness of the band’s earlier efforts, but White Crosses goes even further in filling out the band’s wallop. With its twinkling piano and a glorious whoa-oa chorus, “Because Of The Shame” could be an outtake from Bruce Springsteen’s classic Born To Run. “Ache With Me” is a slow-jam that would make Paul Westerberg blush, while “High Pressure Low” is Billy Idol meets fellow Gainesville native Tom Petty. “This is my Florida record,” says Gabel. “"I spent a lot of time writing this record while driving directionless on forgotten Florida state roads, highly caffeinated, with albums like [Petty's] Full Moon Fever blasting on my stereo."
Producer Butch Vig – who also helmed New Wave – pushed the band to make White Crosses more dynamic while retaining the bruising roundhouse rights they’ve thrown since their 2001 debut Reinventing Axl Rose. "Looking at it now I think [Vig] was a little conservative with New Wave. He didn't want to come in and scare us, says Gabel. "I think it was an unspoken agreement this time around that we were going to push ourselves farther than we ever had before. No direction was off limits. I'm not afraid of melody. I have visions of playing these songs in stadiums, looking out and seeing an ocean of people singing along."
The album, the band’s second for Sire Records, will be released on June 8th, 2010. Against Me! will also release an EP titled I Was a Teenage Anarchist, which will be available on iTunes beginning April 20th, 2010.
Mewithoutyou is a rock band with some talented musicians, spiritual tendencies and a lead singer more effective than most preachers, nodding his head while spitting about life and the meta. Their music was good, really, even hard, but they drew in the most sedated crowd I have ever seen in a concert hall, claps were rare enough. This seemed especially underwhelming for their opening bands Rubik and All the Day Holiday which both put together upbeat and creative sets reminiscent of the Arcade Fire or the XX. Rubik, with seven band members and four on guitar (plus trombones and percussion), struck a nice balance between melody and the mess of excess large bands often struggle with. Their EP can be downloaded free at rubikland.net and I’ll definitely be looking out for their next show.
MCB's newest addition SarahB was down for covering the Conspiracy of Owls show at Alvins on Cass last Saturday night...writeup soon including a giveaway of the limited edition 100 run signed colored vinyl...bookmark this post and come back tomorrow to win
"With a sound that owes a heavy debt to the downtown New York scene and the spiky rock of bands like the Strokes, it's hard to tell that songs like the gritty, distorted 'Fairy Tales' or the bouncy new-wave anthem of defiance 'Vive La Resistance' are from an Iranian band, let alone one whose members must use onstage pseudonyms to avoid being hassled by police." -MTV
The legendary Melvins played a double set at Small's in Hamtramck last week. MCB was there to grab some shots of the sludge metal veterans. Buzz Osborne and Dale Crover led the charge through new material and Melvins classics, and the sold out crowd loved every minute of it. For anyone who hasn't seen them live, the Melvins are by far one of the best live shows in rock music. Totimoshi opened with a stellar set as well
And Mark Up Those Calendars
This one is going to be one hell of a gala. If you couldn't make the first Motorcity Special show, you can reserve a copy of the 1st pressing here and pick it up at the show July 31st. For more information, check out the Motorcity Special website. See you there Motherfuckers!
If you would like something revued by the legendary -jr, feel free to mail hard-copies to 11859 Sycamore, Plymouth, Mi. 48170....and I am partial to vinyl.
-jr is a musician/dj/blogger/writer from Detroit, MI. He performs in the bands The Jesus Chainsaw Massacre and Sheefy Mcfly & The Delorean. He also writes a cultural blog covering the ins and outs of the Detroit Music Scence as well as pop culture. When Dj'ing he uses the handle DJ JCM. He has been an integral part of the Detroit Music mechanation for the past 10 years. He knows just about everything about music on both a local and national level. His opinon is gold and is infallible. This is what's been in my ear lately.
In the seasonal blaze of summer festivals, London, Ontario’s TD Sunfest (July 8-11, 2010) shines like no other. Admission-free, the festival offers attendees a four-day, multi-sensory passport to discover new international music, applied arts, and cuisine in a family-friendly crowd as diverse as a United Nations barbeque.
Music lovers can find solace in a powerful Persian song, boogie to hard-hitting Punjabi beats, or fill in a blank space on their musical map with jazz from Indonesia or rock from Siberia. All among the largest and most varied global bazaar (over 250 vendors!) of any world music festival in North America, in an 18-acre urban oasis conveniently located smack dab between the multicultural metropolis of Toronto and the Middle Eastern hub of Dearborn, Michigan.
“Every year, the overwhelming majority of Sunfest performers are totally new to the audience, and people love that,” festival Executive Director Alfredo Caxaj enthuses. “You don’t have to be familiar with all the names, because you know that the jazz and world groups we feature will move you.”
Groups like the exuberant Orchestre Septentrional d’Haiti, the island’s longest-running big band still playing jazz-infused Haitian and Latin gems. Or Ivory Coast-born global music darling Dobet Ghanoré, with her gorgeous acoustic Afro-beat, striking voice, and youthful grace.
Without the pressure to push tickets, Sunfest revels in la crème de la crème of lesser-known music genres—for example, bossa nova harmonica by respected German jazzman Hendrik Meurkens, Native Siberian Buryat rock (Namgar), Indonesian jazz (Monica Akihary with her Boi Akih Trio), and old-school Mexican jarocho from Veracruz (Tlen-huicani). The festival moves from the dizzy heights of premier Canadian jazz and funk—like the bike-powered dance floor activism of Mr. Something Something—to the deep beats of electro-banghra, thanks to Britain’s Swami, and the trans-cultural percussion of Netherlands-based Drums United, featuring DJs and drummers who hail from seven different nations, including Bangladesh, Senegal and Venezuela.
Sunfest also prides itself on its links to new immigrant communities flourishing in the London region, such Colombians who now number in the thousands, thanks to groups like the Bogotá-based salsa powerhouse, La-33, and the more traditional, heavily African-influenced ensemble, Las Alegres Ambulancias del Palenque, from Colombia’s Caribbean basin.
This year, as a special treat, festival-goers will enjoy a veritable mezze platter of Middle Eastern, Arabic, and Mediterranean music, all bridged by the sometimes delicate, sometimes potent sounds of the oud (lute). These offerings reflect both the burgeoning Arabic and Middle Eastern enclaves from Dearborn, Michigan to Toronto and Montreal, and an important aspect of the festival’s mission.
“I think of the arts as a powerful vehicle for bringing people together,” explains Caxaj. “They can be instrumental in achieving things that seem difficult, challenging or even impossible. So by celebrating the richness and diversity of a region like the Middle East, we’re offering a beautiful way to balance the many misconceptions people carry, and to show what these communities have to give.”
International masters of Middle Eastern genres—The Klezmatics and the rollicking Jewish traditions that made them a klezmer household name; the edgy Iranian vocals of Mamak Khadem; the subtle oud of Palestinian-born Simon Shaheen—will resound side by side with an impressive roster of lesser-known Canadian groups ranging from the traditional to the innovative.
Take 2010 Juno-Award nominees from Toronto, Jaffa Road, who embrace both Jewish and Arabic traditions and turn them into haunting, jazz-inspired songs. Or Montreal’s Bambara Trans, whose nine members take Lebanese music in a radical new direction with Afrobeat and electronica, and Vancouver’s Tambura Rasa, who combine flamenco, Roma, and Arabic acoustic sounds with the beautiful shimmies of the belly dance.
On the more traditional side, in addition to Shaheen, Sunfest visitors can look forward to checking out Moroccan oud player Hassan Al Hadi’s invocation of North Africa’s distinct musical heritage, and local favorites Light of the East, whose oud-driven acoustic pieces span the Eastern Mediterranean. “We feel that visitors will really be able to savour all of the possibilities from the region,” muses Caxaj, “along with the intense creativity of the Middle Eastern community in North America.”
Musical delights aside, Sunfest has managed to do what few other outdoor festivals can claim: create an ethnically and economically diverse audience in the midst of the Great Recession. “You won’t see people of just one background or color at Sunfest,” Caxaj notes. “And that’s a powerful bonus for anyone who wants to visit the world in one stop, without having to jet around the globe. It truly sets us apart and has kept us growing, despite the tough times.”
FRESH TIGHT DESIGNS presents: The Undertone - every last Saturday of the month - Crofoot - Sat July 3rd
Saturday, July 3, 2010 at 8:00pm
The Pike Room inside The Crofoot
1 S. Saginaw
Freshtight Designs and The Crofoot
Featuring some of Metro Detroit's most influential minds, styles and voices,
Join us on July 3rd for:
LASWUNZOUT (F.I.S.T. and Loe Louis)
Live graffiti by: Samskee DeBourbon
Presented by: Freshtight Designs
When Lords of Acid embarks on the Sextreme Ball this summer (previously announced as Sextacy Ball), the legendary Praga Khan will be joined by the villainous Rock of Love contestant Lacey Conner on vocals, former Ministry/RevCo guitarist Sin Quirin, bass player M3 (Powerman 5000) and Kirk Salvador on drums (ex-Society One).
The Sextreme Ball marks the first time the industrial bands Lords of Acid and My Life With The Thrill Kill Kult have shared a stage since The Sextacy Ball trekked across the U.S. fifteen years ago. Also appearing on the touring circus are Sacramento-based Blownload and DJ Deathwish from http://www.vampirefreaks.com/
Tour dates are:
July 13 Seattle, WA Studio 7
14 Portland, OR Dantes
15 San Francisco, CA DNA Lounge
16 Los Angeles, CA Club Nokia
18 Tucson, AZ Rialto
20 Salt Lake City, UT Club Sound
21 Denver, CO Ogden Theater
22 Lincoln, NE Bourbon Theatre
23 Minneapolis, MN Ground Zero
24 Chicago, IL Cubby Bear
25 Milwaukee, WI The Rave
27 Cleveland, OH Peabody’s
28 Detroit, MI Blondies
29 Pittsburgh, PA Diesel
30 New York, NY Gramercy Theater
31 Philadelphia, PA Dracula’s Ball
August 1 Ithaca, NY The Haunt
2 Baltimore, MD Bourbon Street
3 Fayetteville, NC The Rock Shop
4 Orlando, FL Firestone Live
5 Ft. Lauderdale, FL The Culture Room
6 St. Petersburg, FL State Theatre
7 Atlanta, GA Masquerade
8 Knoxville, TN The Valarium
10 San Antonio, TX Scout Bar
11 Houston, TX Scout Bar
12 Dallas, TX Tree’s
13 Albuquerque, NM Sunshine Theatre
14 Phoenix, AZ Venue of Scottsdale
With over 400 shows under his belt - RnR creator Casey Lee has been bringing bands booze and brik-a-brak to almost every dive bar in and around Detroit with amazing consistency.
MCB has sponsored many shows this past year
NEXT WEEK: MOTORCITYBLOG Happy Hour - The State Bar Fillmore Detroit - Thursday July 8th 5-9pm CARJACK DEVILFISH DJ Nardolicious MOTORCITY SPECIAL#1
He has a radio program on WXOU out of Oakland University
Wild At Heart
Back From The Crossroads
Just returned from a weekend in Chicago where I was able to experience one of the best concerts celebrating the best of guitar rock. The Crossroads Guitar Festival is a music festival/benefit concert that was first held in 2004 in Dallas before it moved to Chicago in 2007 and now in 2010. The festivals benefits the Crossroads Centre founded by Eric Clapton, a drug treatment center located in Antigua. Clapton himself is a recovering addict and alcoholic and has found that Antiqua is a "a safe place, a serene place where one can begin the process of healing from even the most devastating events and life situations" and somewhere around 1993 started the process which would eventually become the treatment center in 1998. Within this serene atmosphere individuals participate in a month long 12 step based program to put people on the road to recovery. By being in Antigua, the center allows increased confidentiality, provides a relaxing atmosphere and is able to keep costs low. The center also boasts that it's treatment is client-driven instead of "managed care-driven" so the clients can regulate their stay. For more information on the center or to seek treatment for an addiction, go to www.crossroadsantigua.org for more info on the center.
Despite the seriousness of the cause, the concerts are also a showcase for a variety of guitarists and varied style of play. All of the performers are hand-picked by Eric Clapton himself and most, if not all, have performed with Clapton at some time, either on stage or on various recordings. The event started on Saturday around 10AM with guitar clinics in the Guitar Village by various performers such as Bert Jansch, Stefan Grossman and a rockin' blues set by The Ryan McGarvey Band (winner of the "Ernie Ball Play Crossroads" contest for unsigned musicians). Their was also a Guitar Center display of its infamous Legends Collection including Clapton's awe-inspiring "Blackie" Fender Stratocaster and Stevie Ray Vaughn's iconic Strat "Lenny". A number of guitar manufacturers also had their new wares on display which kept me entertained before the main stage got a rockin at noon.
Things started off with emcee Bill Murray who introduced every segment of the show with some witty banter and rock n roll impersonations such as Buddy Holly, Elvis and Jimi. Murray is from the Chicago area and also was part of the 2007 event where he came out dressed as Clapton in the various eras of his career. He provided a nice intro to the various bands that played throughout the day and started the day playing an out-of-tune version of Buddy Holly’s “Not Fade Away” though Eric Clapton soon comes onstage to help him out. Things started off strong with a solid performance by Sonny Landreth, a bluesy slide guitar player from southwest Louisiana. Clapton has stated that Landreth is "probably the most underestimated musician on the planet and also probably one of the most advanced" which is high praise from one of the best guiatrists on the planet. This is Landreth's thrid appearance at Crossroads and one of the highlights was Clapton coming out during his set to perform “The Promise Land” with him. For those who are interested, keep track of the Callahan's website since Landreth has performed their many times over the past couple of years (last Wednesday most recently for a nice build up for the Festival) and will most likely be back soon again.
Things were kept rocking during the next 2 sets which saw the gospel, funk and soul band Robert Randolph and the Family Band who were joined joined by Joe Bonamassa and Pino Daniele. Frontman Robert Randolph was trained as a pedal steel guitarist in the House of God Church and makes prominent use of the instrument in the band's music which is referred to in many African American Pentecostal churches as Sacred Steel and that was evident during the show as he played his heart out for the audience. Joe Bonamassa proved to be one of the highlights of the show for me as his guitar was smoking and I wish he had more main stage time to show his skills. Joe received his first guitar from his father at the age of 4 and by age 7 he was playing Stevie Ray Vaughan and Jimi Hendrix tunes note for note and he had the privaledge of opening for BB King at 12 years of age. Pino Daniele brought a unique style of guitar to the show as this Italian guiarist bring a mixture of blues, jazz, Italian and Middle eastern music to his playing. On the way to Chicago, we were listening to Randolph's new album "We Walk This Road" which includes a nice array of songs with jam-band flair such as a cover of "Jesus is Just Alright" featuring Eric Clapton, the funky "Diane" and touches of Philly soul on “Angels”. A very nice album for those looking for blues inspiration (I give the CD a B+).
The next set featured the blues guitar of Robert Cray along with Jimmy Vaughn and blues legend Hubert Sumlin who is best known for as guitarist in Howlin' Wolf's band. His legacy comes from the fact that many English guitarists who were deeply influenced by the blues (including Clapton, Page, Richards and Beck) covered many of Howlin' Wolf songs and imitated Sumlin's guitar lines (such examples include Clapton's covers of "Goin' Down Slow", The Rolling Stones' version of "Little Red Rooster" and the Yardbirds' version of "Smokestack Lightnin'"). This set was wonderful for guitar lovers of that sweet blues sound. Sumlin really showed his touch on a version of Wolf's “Sittin’ on Top of the World" which was the purest blues moment of the night as he just belted out this song oxygen tank in tow.
Things quieted down a bit for sets by acoustic Scottish folk musician Bert Jansch (a founding member of the band Pentangle) and Stefan Grossman joined by Keb' Mo'. Neil Young once said of Jansch that "As much of a great guitar player as Jimi [Hendrix] was, Bert Jansch is the same thing for acoustic guitar...and my favourite". Once again high praise from an icon and for a musician that not a lot of American fans are familiar with. His set might have felt better at the Ark but it was nice seeing him get the exposure to the 30,000 fans in attendence. It was so quiet during his set, you could hear the wind rustle which is amazing for such a loud venue. I often complain at shows where idiots keep talking during performers to the point you need to "shhh" them multiple times before they get the hint. This audience was both receptive and appreciative of the music being performed for them. Grossman is also another acoustic legend who almost was in a band with Janis Joplin and Taj Mahal but Janis just started with Big Brother and the band never happened though he did play with a band called the Even Dozen Jug Band. which included Steve Katz (Blood, Sweat & Tears), John Sebastian (The Lovin' Spoonful) and Maria Muldaur. He was joined by the stunning vocals of Keb' Mo' who I have always heard good things about and three Grammys are not to be sneezed at. His blues style really energized me and makes me wish I had listened to my friend in Toledo earlier about how good he was. He was another musician who needed more time to showcase their talents in front of this crowd. For trivia buffs, he portrayed Robert Johnson in a documentary film, "Can't You Hear the Wind Howl?".
At this time, I wandered a bit and missed ZZ Top for Ryan McGarvey Band. I had seen ZZ twice in the past 4 years and my buddy Saad said he was incredible which he was. That kid has some amazing blues guitar talent and I hope to see more of him in the future. Doyle Bramhall II and Faded Boogie joined by Gary Clark Jr and Sheryl Crow were part of a set that had some interference by some technical glitches but Gary Clark Jr plays a mean guitar and should be a name that we will hopefully hear more of down the road.
Keb' Mo' did come back out for an incredible set by Vince Gill who showed that country music can belong with the greats of guitar rock as he was also joined by Albert Lee and James Burton. Lee (not to be confused with Ten Year After lead man Alvin Lee) is known within the music industry for his speed of playing and his technical virtuosity which has heard Clapton call him "the greatest guitarist in the world" though he is better known to country fans which he hightlighted during his post-Crossroads set at Callahna's last night. Like Lee, Burtonis also known as a session musician having played with Ricky Nelson, Elvis presley and John Denver and is considered the master of the telecaster. He is best known for writing the music and creating the main riff and solo for "Suzy Q" (originally by Dale wakins but also CCR).
Things slowed down for Citizen Cope who was given his own set but seemed out of place. He is a great singer/songwriter who feels great at the Royal Oak or Rothbury but out of place at a guitar festival. He should have been in a group effort instead of by himself. Detroit was represented by jazz guitarist Earl Klugh who was then followed by a bluesy set by the John Mayer Trio.
The best set of the night in my opinion was the pairing of blues legend Buddy Guy, rising star Jonny Lang (soon to be in Detroit at the Royal Oak Music Theatre) and surprise guest Ronnie Wood (of Rolling Stones fame). This set was the highwater mark that just cut through the arena as a wave of pure blues goodness. They even did an instrumental version of "Miss You" that had some people thinking Jagger would come out. If this was the only set I had seen at Crossroads, I feel that I would've gotten my money's worth.
Next was the replacement set for the Allman Brothers Band since three days earlier Gregg was given the opportunity for surgery for a much needed liver transplant. Bill announced that the operation was a success and he was doing good. Replacing them was a set by Derek Trucks and Susan Tedeschi Band who were joined by Warren Haynes (Gov't Mule). Sheryl Crow, David Hidalgo and Cesar Rosas (Los Lobos) and Johnny Winter who looked frail and wasn't on top of his game with his one song but still admired and cheered by his fans. Hayes version of “Soul Shine” with Derek Trucks and Susan Tedeschi was one of the show highlights.
I could've missed the next set by Jeff Beck since it was similar to the set they did last Sunday at the Fillmore but their version of Muddy Water's "Rollin' and Tumblin'" with Rhonda Smith on bass is still infectious no matter how many times you hear it. I wish he could've done a more older blues rock set at the festival or perhaps more with Clapton. He did come back to accompany Clapton on Elmore James’ “Shake Your Moneymaker” though I would have loved to have seen more of this type of playing. Eric Clapton then came out and did a song with Citizen Cope which got some groans from the audience but pretty soon Steve Winwood came out and they did some wonderful work on Blind Faith’s “Had to Cry Today”, a 15-minute version of Hendrix’s “Voodoo Chile” and my favorite song of the night, Traffic's "Dear Mr fantasy". Clapton and Winwood were tight on this set and makes you wish for them to tour together instead of Clapton with Daltery and Winwood with Santana.
Besides Cope, the low point for me was BB King. For years BB King has been fighting diabetes and this has affected his playing. He is counting on his band to carry the songs for him and then he will go into long stories as they carry the beat. This is what happened here as King starts with about 2 minutes of playing before Cray, Vaughan and Clapton pick up the beat as he sings and King comes back and plays a minute at the end of the songs. BB King can be fun to listen to but it is a shame he can't play guitar as he used to. The audience still oves him as there cheering showed but here King is more of a statesman that a player as shown by the way Sumlin and Guy can still play like the old days. The day ended 13 hours later as most of the artists returned to the stage for a performance of "Sweet Home Chicago" which only makes sense as the rain held off at the warm 90 degree sun faded by midday to make the day very enjoyable. This was a truly great day of music with some of the best and most well-respected guitar plays living. While it is sad to see King and Winter fade, it is nice to see guys like Landreth, Clark Jr and Bonamassa holding down the fort. Clapton has said this will be the last Crossroads but hinted their might be another which is fine by me since he looks like he is having fun on stage with his friends as shown when playing with Landreth, Crow Beck and Winwood among others. I really enjoyed this event which was easy to access and exit unlike so many big shows. The crowd was very well behaved and the show kept moving at a nice pace which led to very little downtime. My thanks toeveryone involved in making this show go off exceptionally well.
While in Chicago, my buddies and I also took in some of the local flair of Chicago starting with a stop at the Cicero American Festival to see 60's icons Jay & the Americans who went through a nice set of thier hits as well as songs like "Along Came Jones" and "Pretty Woman" (the lead singer does a pretty decent Roy impersonation). The festival itself wasn't much but the music was nostalgic and fun. We next tried to go to Legends but the line was around the block so we headed to Navy Pier which was built in 1914 both to handle shipping and as an entertainment. Rebuilt in 1990, the site became a tourist attraction as home of a 150-foot tall Ferris wheel, an IMAX theater, the Chicago Shakespeare Theater, Amazing Chicago's Funhouse Maze, the Chicago Children's Museum and the Smith Museum of Stained Glass Windows. As it was close to closing time, I became a man on a mission and walked the entire inside as it was closing down so the only stuff I really got to see inside was the Stained Glass Art which adorned the walls I was walking though. I wish I could've had more time, but you take what is giving you. I also enjoyed standing at the end of the pier looking out over the lake as the dark waters were lit by the glare of the lamps that illuminating the gulls hanging out flying over the water. It was very peaceful and a highlight of the trip. I then walked back to my friends who gave up long ago from trying to keep up and we went back to Legends to just catch the last song of the night though we did get to meet Buddy Guy who didn't have time for a photo but shook our hands. We all thought the club would look a bit more rustic which was a bit of disappointment as it looked almost too glossy but you can't deny the place has a presence. We also met Guy's son who told us that Jeff Beck showed up a couple of night's before and played on stage.
On Sunday, we hit the Shedd Aquarium which is one of the largest in the world. We didn't have a lot of time but we did get to see the whole place. Improving upon its predecessor inland aquarium, the ex-Belle Isle Aquarium in Detroit, extensive use was made of designs by Mary Chase Perry Stratton, incorporating her custom-made Pewabic Pottery tile which gives it a Detroit flavor. While most of the museum had a modern look, I enjoyed the Amazon exhibit which made use of tress and sets to give a more unique feel that some of the other areas and is the home to anacondas, piranhas and electric eels. The Oceanarium immerses you in the vibrant coastal ecosystem of beluga whales (one of my favorite animals), Pacific white-sided dolphins and sea otters (most of which are survivors of the Exxon Valdez oil spill). In the Wild Reef exhibit, you can explore underwater gardens of iridescent corals and garden eels and then visit a fishing village where residents saved their reef from destruction. The waters of the world takes you on a tour of various water ecosystmes where you can meet animals from all over the world including the endangered Grand Cayman blue iguanas (only 30 left in the wild), the elegant Nile knifefish, the Autralian lungfish Granddad (an 80 year old fish claimed to be the oldest in captivity) and a giant Pacific octopus. They have some nice fun areas for the kids where they can drive a submarine, pretned they are penguins and touch real starfish. They can also watch divers feed animlas ion the reef exhibits or watch Fantasea, a show which incorpaorates otters, dolphins and sea lions in action. For more info go to www.sheddaquarium.org though get their early since long lines do form.
After the aquarium, we came home home where my buddies went to Pine Knob to see Kansas and Styx while I went to see what all the fuss about Andre Rieu was about. It was a fun show with the band dressing up in tuxes for theguys and elegant dresses for the ladies. He played a bunch of standards including "The Blue Danube" and "Memories" with some beautiful singers. The band also had a bit of fun messing around to Rieu's direction which reminded me to the Lawrence Welk show which explains why my parents probably love him so much. Afterwards, I caught the end of Albert Lee's country-styled set at Callahan's which rocked out and thus ended a wonderful trip to Chicago. Hope you didn't mind reading all this and now let's get into my concert picks of the week.
Thursday (7/01) - the great Cyndi Lauper @ Sound Board Theater at MotorCity Casino doing her new blues album, Streetlight Manifesto @ Magic Stick, The Verve Pipe @ Brecon Grille (Saline), Iranian rockers Hypernova @ Majestic Cafe, Modest Mouse @ Royal Oak Music Theatre, ABBA The Music @ Meadowbrook Theatre
Friday (7/02) - Modest Mouse @ Royal Oak Music Theatre, Steve Miller Band w/Peter Frampton @ Pine Knob, John Waite w/Rockets and Dirty Americans @ "Stars & Stripes Festival" in Downtown (Mount Clemens), Smokey Robinson @ Detroit Opera House
Saturday (7/03) - for those that missed Crossroads, Eric Clapton w/ Roger Daltrey @ Pine Knob, electronic DJ Deadmau5 @ Fillmore, Vince Neil w/Pistol day parade and Critical Bill @ "Stars & Stripes Festival" in Downtown (Mount Clemens), comic music genius "Weird Al" Yankovic @ Meadowbrook Theatre
Sunday (7/04) - country star John Michael Montgomery w/ Annabelle Road @ "Stars & Stripes Festival" in Downtown (Mount Clemens)
I might have missed a few but I think my fingers are getting tired from all the typing so forgive me if I missed a cool band.
My bands of the week are a tribute to the Crossroads Festival. Since I have already talked about them, let's just pick out a few videos by my favorite artists who performed at the festival. Here are Sonny Landreth, Joe Bonamassa and Gary Clark Jr.
Have a good week and hope to see you all at the Cyndi Lauper concert.
How would you like to have a private screening of Zac Efron’s new movie, "Charlie St Cloud", in your own hometown with the Hollywood star himself, along with a few hundred of your friends? Then be sure to check out www.charliestcloud.com/hometownsweeps and watch a special message from Zac Efron, then register for your chance to win!
Also, learn to cook healthy with the Red Wing's Kirk Maltby and Healthy Living advisor Tina Miller at the new Meijer's in Rochester Hills @ M59 and S Adams Rd. Starting at 4PM, the first 200 people in line will get an wristband for a guaranteed autograph with the Red Wings star.
I must confess to being lazy and suffering from writer's block and a severe lack of motivation to write about anything at all lately. Dude, all seasons of X-Files are streaming on Netflix, what more can I say? Better late than never!
Last Saturday, June 19th 2010, the Eagles of Death Metal headlined the High Times First Annual Cannabis Cup's after party, Epic Daze, at the Mezzanine in San Francisco, CA.
In case Detroit civilians don't quite know their California geography, I live in Los Angeles which is about 500 miles south of San Francisco. This is where the nicknames "So Cal" and "Nor Cal" come into play. People from "So Cal" (mainly the LA born and raised) usually don't like "Nor Cal". As someone who was born an artist and a free thinker, I, on the other hand love visiting the city of SF and have nothing against "Nor Cal"...except for the fact that the music scene is unarguably in LA.
This wasn't the first time I've traveled up north to see friends' bands perform in this city. In fact, this wasn't the first time I've traveled to SF to see the Eagles of Death Metal play there either. A good friend of mine happens to live on Market St. in the city which is conveniently a stone's throw away from venues such as The Warfield and The Mezzanine. Its almost TOO easy...but it must be done. This trip was a last-minute thing, literally buying a quick airline ticket the day before, and replacing all sleep with booze. The saying of the weekend was, "Party through it!" Rock n Roll!
This year, The High Times brought their Cannabis Cup competition to America for the first time. The Annual Cannabis Cup is traditionally held in Amsterdam, but with all the current legalization in California, why not bring it to the most liberal city in the state? In a city where a cop would bust you for lighting up a cigarette in a bar yet turn the other cheek at lighting up a joint on the street, San Francisco is definitely the next best place to hold a competition such as this.
My friend and I arrived at the Mezzanine at around 10:30pm, a hour and a half before Eagles of Death Metal go on. When we walked inside, the band Lyrics Born from Berkeley, CA were already well into their set. I took a few snaps of them who were seemingly entertaining. Their lively female vocalist kept catching my eye and I shot several snaps of her. I won't lie, reggae isn't my "scene", but I do dig the way everyone is totally cool with each other, dancing and bobbing their heads in unison while smoking joints - you know a fight is not about to break out at anytime because the atmosphere is so thick with good vibes....and pot. A little after midnight, Eagles of Death Metal finally grace the stage with their presence. What was so cool about this night is that The Mezzanine is small venue. I can't even remember the last time I saw Eagles play in a venue that small. There were no stage barriers or a photo pit, and uh, no security. I guess the venue assumed that everyone would be SO stoned, that security won't even be needed. My friend and I found a rad spot upfront before their set and took it! I was trying out my new lens (remember the one I was supposed to shoot the Spaceland shows with?) and I wanted a kick ass spot. Perfection!
As Eagles of Death Metal fans may know now, beloved bassist, Brian "Big Hands" O'Connor, was recently diagnosed with cancer and out for awhile to recover from recent surgeries and treatment while Dean Fertita (Dead Weather, Queens of the Stone Age) takes over on the bass for current shows until Brian returns. Dean was completely amazing as a temporary edition to the band, but the presence of Brian was totally missed. The entire set was incredible, more so than usual, especially when you get to see them perform up close and personal without having to fight your way up to the front, or in my case, enjoy it for the first three songs in the photo pit and then getting the axe by security to get out. Last year at a EODM show at the Glasshouse in Pomona, CA, just as the security went to kick out us photographers, Dave and Jesse both told security over their mic that the photographers can keep shooting their entire set, just before going into their 4th song. How cool is that? I got to shoot their entire set again this time too, up front, no security, no bullshit. I filled up my 4GB memory card entirely. The Mezzanine had great sound and awesome lighting, not to mention shooting with a better lens fit for concerts as well as a healthier and happier Jesse Hughes to help capture some kick ass shots.
There was no encore, at least not for the audience, but I did spot another good friend of mine there and we all went backstage where we proceeded to hang out, drink some more, step on pills scattered all over the carpet that were supposedly soaked in psychedelics, sneak out of the building with an unopened bottle of Absinthe hidden in my purse, and then brave 6th Street at 2am while walking back to my friend's Market St. crib to further the drinking and shenanigans. My friend and I were also treated to a preview of something rad coming up that one of the dream boys are apart of. Its new, its different, and its fuckin' awesome! Stay tuned.
Peace, Love, and Death Metal,
MCB presenting at MENSA's 50th Anniversary North American Gathering - The Henry Dearborn - Friday July 2nd 6pm-7pm
Friday, July 2 Indianapolis, IN @ Secret Location W/ Sex Before Marriage, The Sorely Trying Days, Pessoa
Saturday, July 3 Milwaukee, WI @ Y Not III W/ Waxeater, Death Dream, Ape In a Tank
Monday, July 5 St. Paul, MN @ Eclipse Records W/ Lungs, Frontier
Tuesday, July 6 Minneapolis, MN @ Kitty Cat Klub W/ TBA
Wednesday, July 7 Moline, IA @ Bier Stube W/ Centaur Noir, Maylane, Idpyramid
Thursday, July 8 Omaha, NS @ The Hole W/ Eric In Outerspace, Betsy Wells
Friday, July 9 Lincoln, NS @ The Ghost House W/ The Emotron, Eric In Outerspace
Saturday, July 10 Denver, CO @ Bar Bar W/ 1994!, Big Kids
Monday, July 12 Bellingham, WA @ Jinx Art Space W/ Banana Splitz, Herocop, Johnny McIntyre
Tuesday, July 13, Seattle, WA @ The Beacon Pub W/ Herocop, Duck Little Brother Duck!
Wednesday, July 14, Portland, OR @ Back Space Cafe W/ Kidcrash, Housefire
Thursday, July 15, Oakland, CA @ The Oasis W/ TBA
Friday, July 16, Lake Forest, CA @ The Gypsy Lounge W/ The New Limb
Saturday, July 17, San Diego, CA @ PLEASE HELP US!!!!
Monday, July 19 Austin, TX @ Club 1808 W/ Cory Brim, Real Book Fake Book, Dark Market
Tuesday, July 20 New Orleans, LA @ Circle Bar W/ Man At Home, High In One Eye
Wednesday, July 21 Baton Rouge, LA @ The Warehouse (HTG Thrift) W/ Monsters Will, The Deep Blue Sea
Thursday, July 22 Birmingham, AL @ Giant W/ The Brightside Suicides, Fistful of Beard
Friday, July 23 Atlanta, GA @ Wonderroot W/ The Brightside Suicides, Caddywhompus
Saturday, July 24 Savannah, GA @ Hang Fire Bar W/ The Brightside Suicides
Monday, July 26 Raleigh, NC @ Slim's W/ Irata
Tuesday, July 27 Richmond, VA @ Gallery 5 W/ Ghastly City Sleep (Record Release Show!), Autocue
Wednesday July 28 D.C. @ The Blackcat W/ Ghastly City Sleep, Pygmy Lush
Thursday, July 29 New Jersey/Baltimore W/ Ghastly City Sleep
Friday, July 30 Philly, PA @ Kung Fu Necktie W/ Ghastly City Sleep, Restorations, A City Safe From Sea
Saturday, July 31 Brooklyn, NY @ The Acheron W/ Ghastly City Sleep
Friday's show is sold out! but you can still get tix for Thursday's show!
Check out the link above for some tracks by AVI BUFFALO or go to their MYSPACE page and click on the free player, playa
to the Detroit / Windsor area
Jul 03 Summerfest
639 East Polk Street
Milwaukee, WI 53202, US Free Admission
Harriet Island Regional Park
St. Paul, MN
4600 Starlight Rd
Kansas City, MO
Jul 09 Casino Rama
5899 Rama Road, Mnjikaning First Nation 32
4901 Lake Brook Drive
Glen Allen, VA
Jul 12 Pier Six Pavilion
731 Eastern Avenue
Jul 14 Uptown Amphitheatre
820 Hamilton St
Jul 15 Koka Booth Amphitheatre
8003 Regency Parkway
Jul 17 Universal Studios Florida - Music Plaza Stage
1000 Universal Studios Plaza
Jul 18 Chastain Park
4469 Stella Drive
Jul 20 Starland Ballroom
570 Jernee Mill Road
Jul 21 Mountain Park
Jul 23 Halifax Commons Park
Halifax, NS, Dartmouth Common, Halifax, NS, Canada
Jul 30 South Shore Music Circus
130 Sohier Street
Jul 31 Borgata
1 Borgata Way
Atlantic City, NJ
Aug 02 Saratoga Performing Arts Center
108 Avenue of The Pines
Saratoga Springs, NY
960 Brush Hollow Road
25 W. Third St.
16 Crawford Parkway
Aug 09 The Filene Center at Wolf Trap
1551 Trap Road
Aug 11 Hampton Beach Casino Ballroom
169 Ocean Boulevard
Hampton Beach, NH
Aug 13 MGM at Foxwoods Casino
240 MGM Grand Drive
Aug 14 Cape Cod Melody Tent
21 West Main Street
Aug 17 Wellmont Theatre
5 Seymour Street
Aug 18 Wellmont Theatre
5 Seymour Street
200 Ravinia Park Road
Highland Park, IL
Aug 23 Mid America Center
1 Arena Way
Council Bluffs, IA
Aug 24 Ravinia Festival
200 Ravinia Park Road
Highland Park, IL
The Dead Weather
Saturday July 31st
2115 Woodward Avenue
Detroit, MI 48201-3469
A brand new Michigan Travel series comes to public television!
Magical but little known Michigan areas to visit, people to meet, and places to eat. Under the Radar is hosted by Emmy Award-winning Michigan actor, producer, and writer, Tom Daldin.
Detroit Public TV Channel 56.1:
Saturdays at 10:30 a.m. starting June 26
Repeated Thursdays at 7:30 p.m.
DPTV Create Channel 56.3:
Thursdays at 9:30 p.m. starting July 1
Show 1 – June 26
Royal Oak - Three good, fast and cheep eateries.
Detroit - The Inn on Ferry Street ... a collection of beautiful bed & breakfasts.
Kalamazoo - The Air Zoo ... An amazing, interactive aviation museum.
Show 2 – July 3
Grand Rapids - The B.O.B., aka The Big Old Building, renovated into a great entertainment and night spot.
Cadillac - Hermann's European Cafe & Hotel (great place to stay) and Toy Town (great place to play).
Port Huron - We spend the night on the United States Coast Guard Cutter Bramble.
Show 3 – July 10
Detroit - Cliff Bells ... a classic, and historic jazz joint from the 30s & 40s, completely renovated and officially "back."
Lansing - Elderly Instruments ... an internationally acclaimed music and instrument store in the middle of Michigan.
Battle Creek - The Binder Zoo ... where you can take an authentic African safari ... right here in our state.
Dendura, an Egyptian inspired progressive metal band, combines the seductive vocals of Aziza Poggi (Aziza is Egyptian and Lebanese), the virtuosic guitar talents of Steve Wethy and Paul Stein. Together, the band transcends the boundaries of progressive metal to create a mysterious, unforgettable soundscape.
In April 2006, Dendura released New Life, their debut album that attracted several film directors who licensed tracks for Perception, InZero, and the award-winning film Broken. Dendura also penned a metal version of In the Hall of the Mountain King for the Comedy Central series Monsters Ballz and appeared on the ABC affiliate WZZM (Grand Rapids, MI).
In 2007, New Life gained distribution through Sonic Cathedral, one of the largest online stores for female vocal music. By August, it became one of Sonic Cathedral's top-ten best-selling albums and the band caught the attention of KillZone Records who signed them shortly thereafter.
MCB's very first video interview was with Dendura back in the day! :)
We love this band!