Monday, January 30, 2006

Headache City Record Release this Friday, Feb 3rd

It's gonna be garage a rockin' at the Bottle Friday night. Headache City celebrates the release of their first full length record on SSR. Fellow garage rockers Dutchmasters (Memphis, Goner-Records) and Turpentine Brothers (Boston, Alive Records) open. We (THE LATEST) opened for Turpentine Brothers in NYC back in November. That was a great show, don't miss them!

Headache City got a few songs on their MySpace page so you can sample the goods. Be warned, these are catchy tunes and they might be stuck in your head for a while (currently stuck on "Knee Jerk Reaction").

After this HC hits the road for a series of shows throughout the Midwest and then on to Texas and the West Coast. That actually gives you three reasons to come out. First to celebrate the record release of course. Second to give 'em a big send off. And third to congratulate Mikey (guitar, vox) who just returned from his honeymoon.

I recorded Headache City's very first show over two years ago. They rocked straight out of the gate. Unfortunately I don't have the proof. The CD disappeared that very night; either taken by some unscrupulous fan or it may have slid deep into the belly of the CD Recorder. I haven't taken the darn thing apart to find out (and put some closure on this terrible tragedy). HOWEVER, Headache City came down to the Sunken Monastery Studio to record their first demo. That was back in the day when Darcy Dark was drumming and occasionally singing for them. I put one of those songs up as a track du jour. You won't hear it at the show since it's a DD tune so check it out here.

*photo courtesy of smashintransistors

Thursday, January 26, 2006

Got to Pay Dem Bills for Gary Schepers

Gary Schepers, local sound man and tuba player, is hospitalized; almost lost his leg; may lose some toes; hosts a flesh eating bacteria;has no medical insurance; and watches his bills rise as steady as lower ninth flood waters. Where's the good in all that?

Well, Gary didn't lose his leg and thanks to his nasty foot infection found out that he is diabetic so he can take the regimental precautions to keep himself healthy. Thanks to lots of press coverage many folks in similar positions may have learned a valuable lesson re: health, infections and precaution. I know you're thinking I'm really stretching for that silver lining.

But there's more good in all that because Gary is loved by a powerful musical community that has rallied to create a series of shows around town that, charity aside, is astounding. So what's good for Gary is good for the rest of us. We get to see a bunch of great acts, reflect on the amazing amount of local talent and help a guy out to boot.

Gary is like the Forrest Gump of Alt Country. He went on the road with Uncle Tupelo and he did sound for the first Bloodshot shows. He plays frequently at the Hideout with Devil in a Woodpile. So it's no surprise that the series reads like a who's who of Chicago Alt Country. Jay Farrar (Uncle Tupelo, Sun Volt) played last Friday at Fitzgerald's with the ubiquitous Robbie Fulks. Robbie is one of my heroes. He keeps himself amazingly busy with his own music and also hosts a showcase at the Old Town School of Folk called Secret Country that has brought many hidden "living" treasures to Chicago from around the country. Anyway I digress. There were other good acts on this bill and a whole other gig across town featuring the New Duncan Imperials. Sunday there was a family friendly noon show at the Hideout with Wee Hairy Beasties. WHB features my favorite local alt-celebs Jon Langford and Sally Timms who both played in the Mekons, probably the best band out of Wales ever and one of my all time favorite bands. They've both released some fine solo stuff and play with multiple other outfits including the Waco Brothers and Three Johns. Jon and Sally are true local treasures. It's always worth catching their performances. WHB also features the local country legend/singer/bartender Kelly Hogan. Also on the sold-out Sunday Family Bill, the Blisters which features Spencer and Sam Tweedy, spawn of Jeff (Uncle Tupelo, Wilco). The Blisters' set left my friend and bassist, Jacob Smith (who brought his daughter out for her first concert), musically crushed because they were good and sullen like jaded rock stars...and they're like nine years old. I'm glad I skipped it. Last night, Poppa Tweedy played a sold-out show at the Abbey as his contribution to "Sound Check."

Which brings us to tonight...
Kelly Hogan headlines up at Martyr's. Then tomorrow catch Bottle Rockets and Tijuana Hercules at Schuba's. And the final "Sound Check" performance will be next Saturday at the Hideout with the very classy North Carolina act Freakwater (afternoon show). Oh and I don't know the details but there's gonna be some kind of auction too. Local Sound Legend Steve Albini is contributing to the auction. Check the Reader for info.

That's a pretty darn fine turn out for ol' Mister Schepers and I'm sure if he weren't tied up at the hospital and concerned about keeping his toes attached to his feet and his money in his wallet, he'd be pretty darn happy about all this.

Now, imagine if this group could be persuaded to do another series to get some insurance for the Schepers of the world (and where would the music community be without dedicated freelancing souls running the boards and what not???) ? The money is better spent proactively than reactively but then there's nothing about this alt country music that sells insurance, it's all bleeding hearts and tragedy so what are you gonna do?

*photo by Jim Newberry from the Chicago Reader.

Wednesday, January 25, 2006


A Message from New York Night Train.  Check it out.

Howdy amigos,

Sorry I've been out of the loop of late - as you will see, I haven't
been sleeping much:

After way too many set-backs, Issue II of New York Night Train
is finally online in fairly complete
form tonight! The primary feature is the second half of the oral
history that I did with Kid Congo Powers dealing with all of his music
from Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds to the present. Inside you will find
Kid's oral histories in text and mp3 form, a comprehensive look at the
second part of Kid's discography, mp3s of rare, live, and unreleased
tracks, a historical tour of Kid's guitar equipment, lyrics to Kid
Congo and the Pink Monkey Birds songs, a profile on Kid's right-hand
man, Jack Martin (currently also of Cause for Applause and Dimestore
Dance Ensemble), and, the first installment of the Underground Rock
Cookbook, Kid's family enchilada recipe. I also left Part I up if you
want to read about The Cramps, the early Gun Club, etc.

Additionally, I added the Rock Star Reviews section in which Bill
Whitten from Grand Mal looks at Richard Hell's "Spurts" and Vietnam's
Ivan Sunshine reviews Gris Girs' "For the Season." There are more
reviews of up of Black Lips, Black Time, Mike Ladd, and re-issues by
Art Ensemble of Chicago and "No New York". I added a news section that
will be updated on a daily basis. Plus a live section which will
include NYC show listings and recommendations. The Show of the Week is
Gang Gang Dance, Black Dice, and Bill Cosby and His White Pudding Pops
at Syrup Room on Saturday.

In other good news, thanks to this crazy web project, I'm officially in
the record business now as I'm selling Kid Congo Powers' SOLO CHOLO
online. And, once I get my copies of Grand Mal's "Love is the Best Con
In Town" and The Pink Monkey Birds "Philosophy and Underwear" (next
month), I will start distributing all three - which is timely because,
for those of you in or going to Texas, I have a South by Southwest
Showcase for the label and should know the exact date, place and
line-up soon.

So check out my web site and take care of yourselves.


PS - Oh yeah, please forward this around.

Do you Yahoo!?
With a free 1 GB, there's more in store with Yahoo! Mail.

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Korean BBQ - a Sonic Tour

Sunday night a small group ventured to the outskirts of Chicago's Koreatown for BBQ. The meat, in our case thinly sliced boneless beef rib, was cooked on the table in built-in grills. Each table has a vent directly above the cooking area (this is the source of the swooshy hum in the audio). The Korean restaurants I'd been to previously had gas grills but Sunday at Kangnam we used coal which was delivered red hot in iron cauldrons. The meat was accompanied by many monkey dishes of condiments and sides. The majority of sides were variations of Korea's best known dish, brined cabbage (kimchee). We drank soju, an alcoholic drink distilled from rice and sweet potato. Our guide was Chicago artist, Duk J L Kim (informally Linda).

  1. What are we having? And have you ever heard of Bento? download mp3
  2. The Order. download mp3
  3. The Order translated. download mp3
  4. Food arrives. download mp3
  5. The meat sizzles. download mp3
  6. Has anybody been eating the minnows? download mp3
  7. Biofeel. download mp3

Monday, January 16, 2006

New Track du Jour - New Town Drunks

Artist: New Town Drunks
Track: Not Far Enuff
Location: Cat's Cradle (Carrboro, NC)
Date: 12-29-2005
Comment: Roberto Cofresi wrote this song in the late 90's and played it with Texas Guinness Lovers for a few years. It became a TGL favorite even after Roberto and his gal Diane Koistenin left the fine State of Texas for new horizons. They eventually wound up in Chapel Hill, North Carolina where they started New Town Drunks, apparently harnessing the nickname they'd already been given at their favorite watering hole, the Cave. They may be the New Town Drunks but they're town favorites too. Hell, they even have a drink special named after them. One I have a might taste for right now. Anyway TGL and NTD played New Year's Eve gigs and both bands played "Not Far Enuff." We tried to make it a simultaneous continental feel-good experience, however playing in different time zones can make that difficult. This version may find its way to an NTD Live CD soon.

click below to listen (requires FLASH)...
track du jour

Thursday, January 12, 2006

Texas Guinness Lovers

Now on MySpace for your convenience - featuring four live songs from New Year's Eve at Rudz, with Jo Bird on the viola, Tony Barilla on accordion, Bo Morris on trumpet|tuba|french horn|vox, Chris Erin on trumpet, Chris Bakos on bass, Bill Savoie on drums and Kilian Schweeney on vox|guitar.

Woo damn check it out be there friends sounds good brothers and sisters.

Songs are down-load-able.

Sunday, January 08, 2006

New Track du Jour - Introducing the Ron Titter Band

Artist: the Ron Titter Band
Track: Daddy Can't Make it Happen
Location: Room 710 (Austin, TX)
Date: 12-29-2005
Comment: Recorded live to Neuro HD30 at the RTB's impressive debut performance. For this one song the RTB transformed themselves into War. Listen for David Wyatt's crisp Space Odyssey solo midway through - Space Odyssey or is it Elvis' Las Vegas intro? I can never tell.

click below to listen (requires FLASH)...
track du jour

Friday, January 06, 2006

New server for disclexington empeethrees

Disclexington mp3's are now housed directly at the site server which means quicker downloads and a cleaner look.

Almost the entire de Schmog catalog is online (for free!). Check out some early violin work of Chenoa Mauthner of Two Star Symphony (tracks "This Number" and "I've Seen a Moon" on the "ed" release).

All previous tracks du jour are downloadable too.

Stay tune for some great mp3's from our New Year travel.

What are you waiting for? Stock your pod.

Tuesday, January 03, 2006

Too much fun in the sun

Holy Briskets that was a mighty fine trip through Texas. I'm gonna keep this short because to get all the good reminiscences in would take too long. Let it be known that churchbus' love affair with Texas has begun. The boys on the bus had never been before and I think y'all blew their minds.

To All you Huge Town Lovers, you are amazing and you know who you are. To all you Austin Freakies keep on keeping on.

I leave you now with some pics to speak more than a thousand words. Oh and Happy Birthday Brother Purdell and Brother Delgado. You guys threw the most memorable birthday bashes I've ever attended.