Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Welcome to the working week

I'm in the middle of a pretty action-packed week for music here in Buffalo--and, alas, a pretty action-packed one on the work front, which means I haven't had time to write much about any of it here, let alone the many albums I've acquired lately. A few quick notes must suffice:

1. Last Thursday was the annual John Lennon tribute show at Nietzsche's. I didn't see much of the actual concert since I was busy elsewhere in the room with the Real Dream Cabaret's re-enactment of John and Yoko's Montreal Bed-In for Peace. (Celia White has posted some images of the entire night on Flickr, and if all goes well we should be adding some to the Cabaret site soon, too.) Anyway, I could hear the main show over the PA, and there were many fine moments (along with the usual straightforward cover-band versions that never do much for me). Too sleepy now to be able to name names.

2. Last Saturday the same venue sounded completely different during a late show programmed by Pam Swarts. When we arrived, the front stage (site of the Bed-In two days earlier) was the setting for some nicely minimal glitchcore stuff by GregGreg, who'd rigged up something thereminlike on his keyboard which multiplied the effects he was able to get with a wave of his hand. (Sorry I lack the vocabulary to describe this accurately, but it was pretty impressive to watch.)

Next on the bill was Dimetrodon, who have played in Cabaret shows a couple of times over the years, although they've definitely evolved (in a really good way) since then. The flyer described their sound as "honest-to-goodness surf klezmer," and that seems about right to me. It's all-instrumental dance music, and they packed the floor. (The only cover I recognized was Shadowy Men on a Shadowy Planet's theme to Kids in the Hall, which I always liked more than the actual series.) I think my friends who loved the music in the film version of Everything is Illuminated would enjoy these guys. I also hope they tour someday, because I want more people to hear what they're up to. As always, pardon the super-crappy cell phone snapshot:

Pam herself ended the evening with her latest band, Weather Machine, a trio on the more accessible side of her aesthetic. I've always appreciated Pam's comfort with both weirdass experimentation and fairly straightforward rock--that's something you don't see very often, and she's got both the musicianship and the voice to pull it off. "Hey, Ron," you now ask, "Didja happen to take a crappy cell phone picture of Weather Machine?" Ah, but of course:

3. Earlier tonight, an outstanding triple bill at the UB Center for the Arts: the Magic Numbers, Feist, and Bright Eyes. I hope to say more about this one later, so let's plunge boldly into the future:

4. This coming Wednesday--Thanksgiving Eve--two of the most highly praised new(ish) Buffalo bands will be playing at Mohawk Place: the Old Sweethearts and Sleeping Kings of Iona. (The first people to arrive evidently get a newly minted CD of rareties, which is pretty exciting, given how great the two Sweethearts albums are.) Of the two, I've only seen the Sweethearts, though I continue to hear great stuff about the Sleeping Kings, and this one is high on my list. Alas, I missed the Sweethearts when they opened for Kathleen Edwards a month back, since they played way earlier than I expected--but, again, that's another evening I plan to write more about sometime when things calm down.

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