Saturday, January 21, 2006

Curt Kirkwood @ the Living Room

I have very vivid memories of going to see the Meat Puppets in the early to mid 90s. I specifically remember one show during 1994 at Bogart's in Cincinnati. It was a very warm August day, my friends and I hung out all day in front of the venue so that we could be right up front when the music started. The show was amazing. I don't remember to many details but I remember that the show rocked very hard and the crowd pushed and moshed a lot. This ruckus crowd resulted in one of my friends losing a shoe.
Late last year I heard that Curt Kirkwood(the chief Meat Puppet) was releasing a solo album entitled "Snow". Unfortunately I never got around to hearing the CD. But then when I saw that he was going to be touring in support of his new album I decided I would just check him out live. I wasn't really sure what to expect from this show. It has been nearly ten years since Curt released an album. I had read reviews that said the album was more twang than grunge, more beautiful than rough and more folk than rock. I thought these new sounds would be a good thing since my taste had grown a lot since the days of grunge. But nothing really prepared me for last night. At around 11:30 Curt took the stage no longer looking like the character "Thing" from the Addams Family. He had short hair and was very clean cut. He looked just like an average guy instead of the grunge rocker he was known as during the 1990s. Once the show began I was presented with a brand new Curt Kirkwood. One that sounded more like Townes Van Zandt. He performed mostly new material and a few Meat Puppets songs. I was delighted to hear how Curt could still write great songs. His new material is equally as good as his old songs. The old song which included "Oh Me." and "Backwater" sounded amazing in these solo acoustic versions. It will be interesting to see what is next for Curt Kirkwood.
Curt Kirkwood
Curt Kirkwood
See a few more photos here
Curt Kirkwood Solo - Golden Lies (live on KXCI)
Curt Kirkwood Solo - Box of Limes (live on KXCI)
Curt Kirkwood Solo - Backwater (live at Hemlock Tavern, San Francisco)
Download entire Meat Puppets and Curt Kirkwood shows here

Monday, January 16, 2006

Go see Akron/Family!

There were a lot of great concerts scheduled on Saturday night here in NYC. The list included Sufjan Stevens at the Allen room (which I had a ticket to but sold), Alec Ounsworth at Tonic, and The Nebraska Project at the Winter Garden to name a few. Usually on nights like this it is very hard for me to decide what show to go to, but I had no problem this past Saturday because the Akron/Family were playing at the Knitting Factory. Now I am sure that a lot these other concerts were great, but I doubt any of them had the energy or power of the Akron/Family. The four headed rock beast that is Akron/Family took the stage shortly after midnight and didn't stop rocking until 3 am. I have seen Akron/Family perform seven times now and Saturday was by far the best. They have perfected their heavy psychedelic, folk, noise rock to create a sound all their own. The show had everything that I could ask for, including soaring jams, noise rock experiments, and hushed lo fi folk. Young God Records founder and mister Angles of Light, Michael Gira could be seen cheering on and supporting this proteges through out most of the concert. Michael has described the Akron/Family as "gentle American country folk to unabashed electronic noise to gathering and erupting crescendos, to extended skronk improvisations that then suddenly cut to an LSD version of a backwoods barbershop quartet or a Louvin Brothers spiritual‚ sometimes all within the course of one ridiculously long song"(from young God Records website). I personally couldn't agree more with this description. The Akron/Family are currently on tour with Mi and L'au so go see them!
See more photos here
Dowloads: Angels of Light & Akron/Family dylan pt 2

Sunday, January 15, 2006

Mi and L'au @ the Knitting Factory

Mi and L'au opened last night for Akron/Family. They played a 40 minute set that was very well received. The crowd which sat for most of their performance was very attentive. I have never been in the Knitting Factory when it was a quiet as it was last night. Mi and L'au perform quiet, melancholy folk music. The couple who live in Finland recently released their first album for Young God Records "These recordings were made with love in Mi and L'au's cabin in Finland and then overdubs were made in the wilds of Brooklyn by themselves as well as the ubiquitous Akron/Family, Julia Kent (Antony and the Johnsons), Paul Cantelon, Jerome O'Brien and others. Overdubs were made at Seizure's Palace (Angels of Light. Devendra Banhart, Akron/Family) and mixed at Trout recording by Bryce Goggin (Phish. Pavement, Lemonheads, Angels of Light, Akron/Family etc.). "(From the young God website). That is a pretty impressive list of people that worked on their debut album Mi and L'au will be on tour with the Akron/Family for the next two week. I highly suggest that you get out and see them. For tour date near you check here. They will also be back to New York on March 10th when they will play at Tonic.
Mi and L'au
Mi and L'au older