Monday, July 31, 2006

Ready Art Brut? Good Weekend!

I seriously do not even know where to begin.

Seriously.

It was a terrific weekend. I’m going to note some more personal thoughts about the whole Pitchfork Music Festival here tomorrow. However, look for my official Day One recap to go live over at Chicagoist late this afternoon here.

Oh yeah, I did want to give a quick shout out to the Panic! boys, Arturo and Pogo, for throwing a damn fine party last Friday. It warms this old codger’s heart to see the kids dancing to the rock and/or roll. I still maintain the belief that the playlist could be a tad deeper, but when I see that many people just having fun, my criticism –- in this instance -- seems a little pointless.

Remind me to try and set up a party with them sometime!

One more thing ... guess who now has a MySpace page?

Betty the Beagle!

Go ahead and add her ... you know you wanna...

SIDE-NOTE:
The accompanying photograph obviously has nothing to do with this post's content. It was orginally meant to accompany something I wrote about American Apparel and my thoughts and views on that particular company, including a few sentences about its owner. But I decided I didn't really want to print it since a) most of my viewpoints were pretty obvious and b) I am reasonably certain no one really cares about my viewpoints on this particular subject anyway. So now you'll never know exactly where I stand on this issue. I do like the photo though. And not for reasons you might think. But, again, that was all in the piece I decided not to print.

Friday, July 28, 2006

A disturbing thought.

If Union Park pulled a "Bermuda Triangle" this weekend, causing all festival attendees to diisappear, would the blogosphere cease to exist?

I'm thinking yes.
Set-list.

What a frickin' weekend I have ahead of me! Usually whenever Photogal leaves town I bitch and moan about the fact that nothing seems to be going on, but this weekend -- while she's out of town at a motorcycle rally/swap-meet -- there is almost too much going on!

Obviously there's the Pitchfork Music Festival (and my preview of Day One is here and Day Two is here.) Since I'm covering it that's going to keep me both Saturday and Sunday from 11am until 10pm or so. I'm really looking forward to the line-up but have a feeling I'll be a great deal more sober this year than last. Why? Because it's going to be frickin' HOT both days. I'm fair skinned so I have to be careful when I'm exposed to extreme heat for too long so I'll be sure to be constantly downing water in an effort to keep my body running at functional level. The downside is that booze will probably have to take a back seat until after sundown.

On the bright side that means I'll have no problem attending the aftershow parties, at least.

Tonight there are a whole bunch of options to consider as well. I was trying to get into the Ponys/Art Brut show at The Bottle, but my publicity contact for that seems to have gone awol and I don't want to show up only to find out that it's sold out.

However, Panic! is taking place at Darkroom tonight, and the early part of the evening will be devoted to the whole Madchester scene. There's no cover, and their previous set-lists seem pretty cool (even if they are a tad obvious) so that might be a really nice way to kick off the evening. Then there's Live Band Karaoke at The Pontiac, and since I rarely make it out to that anymore it should be a nice place to stop off for a drink or two. Finally, Rudy is spinning at Cobra. While I'm still not entirely sold on Cobra's vibe, since it seems a bit sporadic, the staff on Friday's is cool...and it's been a while since I've heard Rudy spin so I reckon I can't go wrong there. (Just found out Rudy has been ousted in favor of a guest DJ...that sucks.)

Late night? Maybe The Continental? Maybe home since I have to be up and reasonably alert relatively early Saturday morning? Maybe something completely different?

I, of course, lay all that out...but my plans have a tendency to change at the last minute if I'm left to my own devices. However, if you're coming in from out of town and are looking for something to, shoot me an email at tankboy (at) gmail (dot) com and I'll nail down at least part of the evening if you want to meet up.

Anywho, I guess that's that for today. I just want everyone to remember to stay safe, stay hydrated, and be nice to each other this weekend...and I hope you all have a blast; whatever you end up doing.

Oh yeah, one last thing. I was supposed to have a guest DJ from NYC with me at Liar's Club next Thursday but this person seems to have dropped off the face of the Earth and hasn't responded to confirm the date. So if any other band/industry-types are in town next week and are looking for somewhere to have a party with some friends and spin a few records/CDs/mp3s, send me an email. Okay, the NYC DJ may still be on...

Oh, heh. Almost forgot about this. An empeethree to kick off your weekend. When I hear this cover I can't figure out whether I'm supposed to laugh or cry.

Puffy AmiYumi "Basket Case"

The second photo is from the Panic! website...dunno to whom cred is due for that one. Sorry!

Thursday, July 27, 2006

Problem solved!

Well, we all know just how nuts -- and by nuts I mean actually annoyed and not "hot and bothered" -- it makes me when low-rise jeans clash with high-rise thongs? Well, I would like to thank this young lady for finding the solution to that vexing social trend.


Image via Matt

__________

Roll call!

Okay, so who's doing the Pitchfork Music Festival thing this weekend? I previewed most of day one's acts here. Day two's briefing is now up here. Also, for any out-of-towners, Chicagoist has an updated version of our Act Like You've Been Here: A Chicagoist Guide To Chicago. You can download your very own copy here. I supplied the music venue descriptions as well as the Wicker Park and Logan Square neighborhood write-ups. Take a gander and enjoy Chicago without looking like a tourist!

So are you going to the festival? Are you going to buy me a beer? Yes...yes you are, so look for me!

ADDENDUM:
Chicagomonkey had a good point in the comments, so let me make it easier for folks to find me. You've seen photos of me so you know I'll be the tall blonde wavy-haired dude...and it'll be pretty easy to locate me since I'll probably be one of those media-types standing in-between the barricade and the stage during the bands' sets. Usually I would say look for the tall drunk wavy-haired dude, but considering Saturday and Sunday's projected heat-index, I suspect I'll be drinking far more water than beer.

Stay cool,. stay safe and, if you get a chance, say hi!

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Big Box Bang Baby.

I really hope the "big box" ordinance passes in Chicago...they can afford to pay their employees well. I really do not think it's going to hinder further development...I mean they're hungry to move into urban areas because they've run out of market space in the 'burbs. Also, I used to work in an industry directly affected by their influence on international pricing and buying, and I can assure you they're find some way to ease the sting of actually having to pay their employees a livable wage.

What really burns me up, though, is how the opponents to this are framing the issue. I heard one person on the radio trying to imply that this ordinance was union driven and wages would be the same as they are now once the unions extracted their dues. However, UNIONS HAVE NOTHING TO DO WITH THIS! So basically her argument was an attempt to cloud the issue.

This wouldn't drive me so nuts if it weren't for the fact that a vast majority of the populace don't do their home work and actually believe any crazy conspiracy theory that catches their fancy.

JAY-SUS!

Okay, I need to chill. Here's a super rare Flaming Lips nugget to a) cool me down and b) chill you out. Oh wait, they're the one band I CAN'T see at Lollapalooza next week...now I'm getting ANGRY AGAIN!

The Flaming Lips "Enthusiasm For Life Defeats Existential Fear..."

UPDATE: It passed!

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Life On Mars, and other dreamy situations.

I watched, and thoroughly enjoyed, the American premier of Life On Mars last night. Aside from starring "Jip" -- which in my book is always a plus since I particularly enjoy John Simm's acting -- it benefits from being based on a strong story conceit. Never mind that the basic premise could have been lifted directly from Abre Los Ojos (or, even more specifically, from Frederic Brown's What Mad Universe), the execution kept the plot speeding along with me firmly clutched within its grasp.

Plus I am a sucker for anything even tangentially connected to Bowie, so there's that.

So what am I going to do tonight? Oh, I have an idea! Maybe I'll DJ at The Pontiac! And maybe I'll invite my good friend Mark Ruggiero -- a.k.a. singer/hack guitarist for local faves Farewell Captain -- to DJ with me! And, hbow about I spice things up even more and invite the brains behind DoneWaiting to stop by and grace the proceedings with his presence! Yes, folks, it's true; Rob Duffy is in town! Had I thought ahead I would have tried to get him to spin too, but that would entail pouring a gallon of bourbon down his gullet and I don't think his lovely girlfriend would appreciate us doing that.

I'll be spinning a bunch of new stuff (as usual) so prick up your ears and snag ahold of these trends before the kids stomp 'em into the ground. One disc I'll be playing something off of is the forthcoming sophomore effort from Juliana Hatfield's side project Some Girls. Overall the disc is pretty drab, filled with unassuming folksy rock-type stuff. If you['re a fan of Hatfield you'll like the disc, although I'm a bit let down since I've grown especially fond of the snarling guitar mangler she's been over her last few solo efforts. Oh well.

One track that does sort of stand out on the disc is "He's On Drugs Again." I'm not even going to try and surmise who/what the tune is about but I will say this ... it's the best song Veruca Salt hasn't written in the last ten years.* Download it, listen, and see if you don't just agree with me.

Some Girls "He's On Drugs Again"

*UPDATE: Heh. Figures that the one song I pick out as the best is a cover. Download the original here.

Monday, July 24, 2006

Summerfestin'.

Photogal and I were talking this morning and we both had the same feeling that we had just come off a long holiday weekend or something. The only explanation for this would be the fact that the Wicker Park Summerfest was this weekend so we were actually out and about Sunday. Since Sunday is always our down day, this probably contributed to our internal systems’ confusion.

It was a pretty action packed weekend. I saw Dirty On Purpose Friday and, while there will be a review of the show on DoneWaiting later today, I will briefly say that they mostly met the expectations I had for them. Saturday I made it out to see The Coup and Devotchka. While The Coup wildly exceeded my expectations with an electric live hip-hop/funk type show, Devotchka was a little meh. Points must be given for the tuba festooned with Christmas lights, but the set in general didn’t excite me. You know what though? After hearing Silk-E sing "Babyletshaveababybeforebushdosomethincrazy" it didn't really matter to me that Devotchka wasn't all I had hoped for. I tried to stick around SubT to catch Dead Meadow but ended up just being too tired to make it through the opening bands (who were all pretty awful) so I ended up going home.

Sunday was more of an all day affair. I caught the tail end of The Living Blue and really wished I had seen more of their set. What I saw was a bit of ‘60s inspired guitar-jam wankery that left a bad taste I my mouth. It was early and bright and the crowd was sparse so maybe the band was just a bit off their game. The biggest surprise of the day follwed, though, in the unannounced appearance of Memphis’ River City Tan Lines. This female-led trio just killed. Even though there was only a crowd of about eleven black-clad garage-heads watching, the band played as if there was a sea of cheering fans trying to mob the stage. After their jaw-dropping set I needed a break.

After a bit of a cool-off at The Pontiac with some friends (where the bartenders were just swamped and attempting a heroic charge to serve the thirsty masses) I rejoined the fray in time to catch The Starlight Mints. I love these cats from Norman, OK and have seen them a number of times in the past. It had been awhile though (the last time being at The Mercury Lounge in NYC) aand they’ve gotten even tighter. It’s amazing that a band with so many little weird ting going on in their songs can sound so tuneful and together but they make it look easy. My only quibble is that a lot of their tunes are the same tempo so after a while it began to have the effect of an aurally monochromatic experience. And then a whistle would blast or a buzz would wend its way out from under a synth line and the color would come rushing back in. But, like I said, it was only a minor quibble.

They were followed by Make/Believe. They were awful. It was like watching a Les Savy Fav rip-off band minus the subversive humor and fat frontman. They even tried a Fugazi-lite moment of audience repartee that completely fizzled. So this is what emo looks like when it grows up? It ain’t pretty.

Next, I finally got to see Dead Meadow and while I would have liked to have seen them in the cozy confines of a small smoke-filled club, they put on a pretty great set even in a festival setting. They were a lot groovier than I was expecting and I even saw a few drunkards doing the wombat. Yikes! Usually my foot would have then been planted in some asses but since the band was so good I decided to give the misplaced hippies some leeway.

The evening ended with The Gris Gris and they were another disappointment. I was really expecting a lot from them and was hoping for some psych freak-outs but all I really got was a bunch of aimless noodling. Photogal told me she had some corned beef cooking back at home and I decided that corned beef won out over Gris Gris as far as the command of my attention was concerned.

Overall I remain impressed by the choice of acts booked on the North Stage. (The South Stage was booked by a jam-band promotion group so you can imagine I kept my distance from that one.) While not all of the acts performed as I would have hoped I still had a great time. Also, as far as street fests go, it was pretty subdued. As far as the “annoying drunk” quotient. The weekend was mercifully light on asshole behavior and unusually heavy on polite crowd navigation. This was definitely tops in my street fest experience and the only previous fest I had a better time at was RibFest, but that was only because The Flaming Lips were playing just before The Soft Bulletin exploded. So that’s a pretty hard one to beat.

In short...huzzah!

Friday, July 21, 2006

Music, music in the air; Music, music everywhere!

So it's the weekend, yet again. This week just flew by. I honestly don't know where all the time went as I look back on a slurry five day blur leading to the end of last weekend. This weekend looks set to be a mellow one, a calm before the storm as it were, before the one-two punch of Pitchfork Fest and Lollapalooza over the next two weekends. it's about frickin' time. Due to my grown-up schedule I have been suffering a serious deficiency in the "live-music experience" category.

Did I mention I, for the second year in a row, had totally resigned myself to skipping Lolla only to have a pass fall in my lap? I'm not going to make all three days but I am going to try and catch a couple bands over that weekend. The kicker is now that I can go, and I've looked over the schedule, I realize there really isn't a whole lot I feel the need to see? The Lips are playing Saturday -- the one day I definitely can not go -- and QOTSA are at the same time as Wilco on Sunday? WTF? Oh well, it's free, so I can't really complain.

There also seem to be a ton of after-parties, which is a bit of a bummer. Now that Lolla's established everyone wants to get their name attached to it somehow thus diluting the caliber of after-show entertainment/dancing by stretching it too tautly over the city’s scene. Oh well, when your city is getting the number of great bands that we are this summer that seems like an awfully petty thing to be bitching about, huh?

Anyway, let's kick off the weekend with a few tunes for you to download and enjoy as you see fit, shall we? First off we have the new single from Sloan. As always it's a poptastic little slice of joy. It's making me pretty hungry for their new album. And these pretzels are making me thirsty. Anyway.

Following up is a little known (in the States) number by Teddybears STHLM titled "Hey Boy." One of their older tracks, an older gauzy slice of pop called "Yours To Keep," has been getting lots of attention lately, and rightfully so. However the tune below is off the group's 2005 disc Fresh! and it’s the polar opposite of "Yours To Keep." Stupid, silly fun.

And finally, we have a dumptruck slamming into the concrete from a 45-story drop version of "Lightning Strikes The Postman" by Aereogramme. This is the tune that had $in dancing all over The Pontiac before opening up a tank of pressurized air with his ass.

Sloan "Who Taught You To Live Like That?"

Teddybears STHLM "Hey Boy"

Aereogramme "Lightning Strikes The Postman"

And with that, I bid you adieu for the weekend.

Thursday, July 20, 2006

Bursting bubbles.

So I got turned on to this site yesterday, supposedly built by a jilted wife, and was telling Photogal how it was equally parts hilarious and chilling. Especially this billboard.


Then today I find out it's nothing more than a viral ad campaign. I have no idea what it is for, yet, but I will say they did a good job of reeling in even usually suspicious little ol' me. I feel a little cheated though.

Oh, and look, I guess I just accomplished their goal for them by even writing this and posting that picture.

Sneaky!

UPDATE: The advertiser is Court TV. Ick.
TMI and general yip-yap; our pledge to you.

So I was reading Erin's post yesterday about what constitutes personally acceptable fodder for her to write publicly about and how it differs from what she was prepared to reveal in the past. It's a good read. It touches on some of the same stuff I've struggled with in the past as far as what to reveal, how to reveal it, and how much of my editorial hand should be transparent and how much should be manipulating¹ the reader.

The only thing I didn't really agree with is her supposition that after about three years most bloggers tend to shed the personal TMI sorts of posts and opt for "more yip-yap about the random oddities."

I would like to assure you that we here at Tankboy Enterprises will always give you TMI and general yip-yap.

So you can rest easy now.

¹
This really is less Machiavellian than it sounds. At the core every single piece of writing is trying to manipulate the reader in one way or another. It's the basis of the whole endeavor.

Also, FYI, you will notice the footnotes are now always in bold and easier to read. This is due to Erin's original carping that her old eyes couldn't make out the footnotes in the past. This one's for you Shea.

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

The Spirit gets a movie!

Holy moley!

More than four decades after Will Eisner created him, "The Spirit" -- one of the most influential comics of all time -- is coming to the big screen.

The movie will be adapted and directed by Frank Miller ("Sin City"), who will be on hand for the public announcement Saturday at Comic-Con International in San Diego.

The Spirit is my favorite comic ever. I really wish I had a rip of my vinyl copy of "Ev'ry Little Bug" to share with you to celebrate this news, but I don't. Maybe I'll just invite you all over to watch my super-faded VHS copy of The Spirit movie I taped off the TV in the '80s. Actually, does anyone out there have a decent quality version of that? Mine is super-fragile (in worse shape than my orginal Rock And Rule, even) and it's all I have to hold me over until the new movie comes out!

Yippee!

Credz to my L'il Bro for cluing me in to this terrific news.
Jessica Hopper hates the Pontiac.

She must have really hated spinning at that Chicagoist party.

Dear Ms. Hopper,

While I am beefy, with self-designed faux-tribal tat and nipple rings I never walk around shirtless. Ever. What really floors me, though, is that you knew my girlfriend drove a jeep!

Yow.

Sincerely,
Tankboy



And now, a typical scene at The Pontiac:


For the record, I still totally dig Jessica's writing, I'm just being cheeky.

FUN FACT: The sideways smiler in the photo is one of Photogal's ex-boyfriends!
Sometimes it just doesn't pay to try and be diplomatic.

Seriously.

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Tankboy, luck, and community service.

Whoa dude, am I the luckiest guy in the world or what? Talk about a perfectly bookended day! First off, I get to wake up every morning with a beautiful woman. Tonight, I get to hang out with two beautiful women while I DJ. See?


Hubba-freaking-hubba, huh? Sorry, though, boys; they’re both taken. However they will be taking requests¹ ... tonight ...when they are the guest DJs at The Pontiac! The young lady on the left is Ms. Debbie Mint and the one on the right, DJ Braceface (a.k.a. Gina K of The Venom Lords) should be familiar from a number of photos that have appeared on my page (primarily because she has supplied me with most of the photographic evidence I have of most social events I have attended.)

Lest you think I am only shamelessly promoting myself, I would also like to direct you to The Assassins page where their brand new album, that I lauded with praise last week, is now available. See, I shamelessly promote all kinds of stuff!

Oh yeah, more shameless promotion in no way connected to me! Between 10:30 and 11:30pm tonight don't forget to send a text message reading "Milk At Midnight" to 99161 to help them, them being the Chicago band Milk At Midnight, move forward in the battle of the bands to perform at Lollapalooza!

I am so selfless.

¹Do you like how I did that whole sales thing, whetting appetites with promises of beautiful girls and then contrasting "taken" and "taking" and using that to segue into shameless self-promotion? I should so work in marketing, huh? Oh wait ... I do.

Monday, July 17, 2006

Happy happy, joy joy!

THANK YOU to everyone who came out Saturday night! The evening was an absolute success. The turnout was terrific, the bar seemed happy with my musical selections (I was told afterwards that some DJs there have been pulled mid-set, so the fact they let me spin until close apparently meant something) and the evening just had a fabulous all around vibe. The only downside was the fact that I didn't get home until the sunb was beginning to come up -- something that I havne't done in a long, long time -- and subsequently lost most of Sunday sleeping. My internal clock is still a little off, because I had a bear of a time dragging myself out of bed this morning as well. It's hard to believe that there was once a time I stayed out until 6am on a regular basis and then was up and running every day by 11am. Those hours just seem insane to me now.

Anyway, thanks again to all of my friends who showed their support at The Continental the weekend ... it meant the world to me!

ADDENDUM: Doesn't the above photo look and awful lot like this one? Except for the fact that $in as WAY sexier.

Friday, July 14, 2006

One Last Invitation plus A Number Of Short Album Reviews.

Okay, this is my last attempt to cajole you out of the house tomorrow night and to implore you to join me at The Continental for what I hope will be an unforgettable evening of great music and transcendent interpersonal contact. In short, make sure you show up at The Continental after 11pm ready for one hell of a party. Kip has the next day off, though, so again; if you see him approaching make sure your drink is not at wing-wang level.

Now, since I’m sure you are all going to show up I’ll move on to a slightly different topic. I’ve gotten a truckload and a half of new music in the last week or so, and I reckoned I would share a few of my observations on a few of the discs with you. So, without further adieu, let’s get to it.

Soul Asylum, The Silver Lining – I’ll say this; this album could have been much worse. Considering the group’s last disc, though, the band really had nowhere to go but up. Overall it’s a pleasant collection of the workmanlike tuneage that we’ve come to expect from Mr. Pirner in the last decade or so. Nothing too spectacular but I bet my dad would have enjoyed it. File under the musical genre a slightly more aggressive Sheryl Crow might inhabit were her balls to ever drop.

Joshua Radin, We Were Here – I admit I only gave this a listen because Chris Holmes produced it. Overall it’s pretty weak and I sort of wish either a) Radin had a more distinctive vocal style or b) Holmes had experimented with the songs in the studio and bulked them up beyond their limited range. I think he could have done it but I’m guessing he opted for more of a hands-off approach to highlight Radin’s songs. He must have seen something in them that I’m missing.

Rhymefest, Blue Collar – Aside from his being a Chicagoan I think Rhymefest deserves massive props for “Devil’s Pie” and its terrific use of a modern rock and/or roll sample (The Strokes’ “Someday.) Oh yeah, the rest of the disc is awesome too. I reckon this will just get praise heaped all over it so I don’t really need to expand on the contents all that much. Let’s just say I like it when the buzz proves to actually come from a bee with a hell of a sting.

Assassins, You Will Changed Us – Not terribly different from the version of the disc that’s been circulating for the last few years, but the content has definitely been sharpened. I am a big fan of this band and really hope they make the jump beyond the borders of Chicago and NYC. A full review is slated to publish later today at Chicagoist.

MSTRKRFT, The Looks – I commented on this a few days ago but think I should expand. I’ve given this quite a number of listens, more than I would probably accord to most other albums that didn’t strike my fancy right away, due to the fact I have enjoyed MSTRKRFT remixes so much. Unfortunately they can’t really carry it over a whole album’s worth (well, eight songs worth) of original material. I still think "She's Good For Business" is a stand-out but the remainder really suffers from a characterless malaise. I suspect they thought they could go the LCD Soundsystem route but they just don’t have the originality to sustain interest in their own compositions.

The Dears, Gang Of Losers – The Dears’ new album is better than their last one. The music is more layered, the melodies more plaintive and the emotion more provocative. These Canuck’s run the risk of being slumped in with that whole chamber-pop thing but I think it’s a mistake to view them so narrowly. Notice, I’m not even removing any points for Murray Lightburn's vocal similarity to Morrissey. Why? Because the tunes are so good that I don’t care who he’s ripping off as long as it keeps working.

Primal Scream, Riot City Blues – Pitchfork continues its recent trend of misinformed reviews by trashing this album. Okay, yes it is a return (some might even say (tongue in cheek) relapse) to their previous motor-boogie incarnation that followed the aural bliss of Screamadelica. So if you are looking for them to continue the sonic assaults they were building under Kevin Shields’ tutelage you are going to be disappointed. If, however, you are like me and enjoy riding along with Bobby Gillespie and company no matter where they’re headed - -as long as the trip is interesting – then you are going to like this disc. Musically it is as solid as an inner-city holler crossed with a man-hug. Chinks will only appear in the façade of the songs if you look for the group be something they’re not. At least not right now.

DJ Tankboy, The Continental – Okay, I lied, I’m pimping it one last time…be there tomorrow night!

Thursday, July 13, 2006

Flashback.

So I'm home sick yesterday, drinking OJ on the couch while watching the final few eps of Freaks And Geeks (again, so sorry I missed it the first time around) when I almost choke on my juice. There it is. Deities & Demigods! Suddenly I am pre-pubescent again, wishing I was bigger than I was and constantly buggin my parents to buy me the latest D&D supplement so I wouldn't be constrained to only read about all the new gods in afternoon segments at my friend Mike's house.

So I have to wonder, do I like this show because it reminds me of what it was like to be an unadulterated geek kid (and in south Texas, where my geek tendencies took root and footbal reigned supreme, this was not exactly the safest route to follow in the late '70s/early '80s) or do I like it because it captures perfectly the mix of geek and freak I turned into later in high school (and believe me when I say that the Lindsey charachter is frighteningly like me in many ways, including the omnipresent army jacket)?

Or do I like it because it's that rare art form that so faithfully mirrors a certain plane of experience that it becomes unversally applicable to everyone's past experinces in one way or another?

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Seal the deal.

Honest, I had something of great import (can we get a result from the judges? Just how many entries have opened up this way in the history of this site?) but an enjoyable evening with the Evil Needle by my side has rendered my brain so much mush. Well, so much mush until I trepan out the excess liquid sloshing around up there and replace it with coffee and donuts.

Or Cheerios.

Probably better that I employ Cheerios and skip the donuts since I suspect my body is already awash in, and feebly attempting to, process an overabundance of sugars that are attempting to work their way through my system without causing any major organ failure. No, doc, I’m not a diabetic, but if I keep this up I may be more than just playing one on teevee.

Actually, I will 'fess up. I am sick. Sick in that midsummer night's cold sort of way. It sucks. Who gets a cold when it eighty-two degrees outside?!

Regardless.

This is a busy week, no? We’ve got the legendary and long in the crock-pot stewin’ to perfection CD release show for the inimitable yet heavily influenced/influential local stars The Ladies & Gentlemen this Friday. One would have to be certifiably insane to miss – wait, come to think of it most of my friends are certifiable so perhaps that is not the best cliché to employ in this instance. How about this: Only an idiot would miss this Friday’s show.

By the same line of logic let’s threaten the populace with grand idiocy if they dare to miss the following evening’s (Saturday the 15th of July) massive dose of irreplicable entertainment in the form of a certain somebody DJing for hours and hours and hours until the sun is just about ready to revisit the morningscape of our city by The Lake. In English, you ask? Are you beating a dead horse, you ask? What ever could you be talking about oh dear sir, mister sir, grand sir, Tankboy sir, you ask?

Okay, I’m going to level with you. Yes, I am repeating myself an awful lot about the super huge DJ gig I have at The Continental this Saturday. The reasoning behind this textual nagging is simple; I want to evening to be unfuckingforgettable.

In order for that to transpire, I need each and every one of your pretty little bodies packing the joint from 11pm on. It is essential that I get you folks to show up earlier in the evening so the train can properly pick up speed until the partygoers are crashing like breakers against the drunken stumblies tottering into the place at 3am. I need everyone, at that point, to intermingle and tear the roof off the joint so all the newbies join in the fun and learn what it’s really like to lose yourself.

That’s why I’m sounding like a broken record. I want you, and me, to create an unforgettable experience together.

Hm. I guess I did have something to say after all!

By the way, have you downloaded the Snakes On A Plane tune in mp3 form that I so generoursly offered to you? Hmmm? Hmm? Hm? Have you?

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Self-promotion and other self-indulgence.

Fist of all I present you with the self-promotion. I will be DJing a.k.a. "spinning" also known as "choosing one song after another with hopes of creating a musical narrative that shall resonate with an audience of listeners collectively interacting with said choices" tonight at The Pontiac. My guest DJ will be Evil Needle of the Substance Abuse DJs collective. She will kick much ass and will serve as a fine compliment to my own "DJing style."

Also please note that you should have the evening of Saturday July 15 (four days from now) cleared of all other obligations so you can be at The Continental from 11pm until 5am to hear me "spin" there as well.

To recap. Tonight be at The Pontiac. Saturday be at The Continental. I have lots of new music to share with the public but I need bodies (e.g. YOU) there to constitute a "public presence" in the first place.

Okay, enough "quotes," just be there. Now, it is time for some random thoughts.

Random Thought One: Actually, Random Thought One has been excised. I got to the end of this and realized that, for the most part, the tone of this entry was pretty light and Random Thought One was anything but light. You should know that it did reference the final Rockit Girl show. Now you should know this fact since I make another reference (unrelated to content within the the excised Random Thought One) to that show later, and say it in such a way as to re-refernces the deleted reference, so at least you now won't think I'm totally crazy and typing references to things I havne't even refrenced. It would've proabably been easier just to excise the later reference as well, but then I would have missed out on all of this expository fun.

I'm sure I will return to the excised subject, and have saved the scalpeled 'graphs, but for now let's just keep it light. So in that vein, and to reward you for sitting through all of this blathering thus far, I offer you this singular treat. It is a high quality version of that damn Snakes On A Plane song I've been searching high and low for! It will have its big-speaker Chicago debut at The Pontiac tonight, but feel free to blast it in the office/dorm/WiFi hot-spot and display to anyone within the circumfrence of your system's possible auditory intrusion zone just how fucking cool you are.

Cobra Starship "Snakes On A Plane (Bring It)"


Random Thought Two: This particular thread on the DoneWaiting message board about the woes of the talent buyer has turned into a multi-page bitch-fest/list of recommendations regarding playing shows. It is true, informative and entertaining. Read it an enjoy if you play live music or attend rock and/or roll performances.

Random Thought Three: Yesterday marked the third time I’ve worn my Phil Collins tour t-shirt that Betsy gave me² (at that last Rockit Girl show, actually) to work and it was the third time no one has commented on just how funny it is. I was growing annoyed that no one was getting the joke until, to my horror, it dawned on me that no one at work thought the t-shirt was a joke in the first place ... maybe my co-workers actually believed I was a Phil Collins fan! So I went to diPOD for consolation and while scrolling realized that it contained an awful lot of Phil Collins music and then, to my further horror, I realized that I am a Phil Collins fan! Sweet baby Jesus, how did that happen?

Random Thought Four: You know you go to Cosi too often when you walk in the door and are asked, before even reaching the counter, "So would you like a chicken sandwich and a cookie, or just a cookie today?"

Random Thought Five: I stopped drinking Starbuck’s coffee about two months ago and just realized it today! It's not some sort of boycott ... I just kind of stopped drinking so much coffee period.

Random Thought Six: The computer fund. As many of you know I've been talking about buying a new computer, and have been saving up dollars here and dollars there when I can. I'm up to a little over $600 now. If I want to hold out for a MacBook I’m only a third of the way there but if I capitulate and just buy another PC I could have a new one delivered to my door tomorrow! I’m wavering kids, I admit it. Plus, someone told me I should wait at least a year before buying a MacBook so they can work out whatever kinks might be there, and I have to admit I don’t think I can wait twelve months for a new computer. Augh! The indecision!

Also, if anyone wants to donate to the Tankboy New Computer Fund™ as a belated birthday gift just shoot me an email and I'll tell you how.

Random Thought Seven: I learned yesterday that three soft steak tacos, with just steak and cheese and nothing else, from Chipotle has over six hundred calories. That's a freaking half-hour of a pretty intensive session on the elliptical machine at the gym! So long Chipotle, you are just not worth it. Erm, guess I’m going to see even more of the nice folks from Cosi since me average lunch there weighs in at almost three hundred calories less, huh?

Random Thought Eight: When did I turn into such a girl?

Random Thought Ten:
Hey, where did Random Thought Nine go? Hm.

A Non-random Thought:
The new Muse is out today. Pick it up from just about anywhere for under ten bucks and thank me later.

Post-script:
Click the pics sprinkled throughout for expanded viewing pleasure. Honestly, click on Angelina Jolie. You know you want to.

And Finally: So long Syd.

¹Actually, the first footnote was excised along with the original Random Thought One content. Sorry about that.
²Sorry boys, as sexy a thought as a Phil Collins t-shirt gifting young lady is, she’s taken.

Monday, July 10, 2006

Dance, dance and bang your head.

It was a good weekend. Saturday was a little wild since I had some friends in from out of town and I perhaps drank a wee bit too much considering I forgot to eat all day. However fun was had, yucks were enjoyed, and no one got hurt/arrested. I did decide to institute a new rule and that is: Always go home when the girlfriend does. I realized that while I had a good time all night long, the highlights of the evening included her and once she went home the night sort of lost a bit of its sheen.

Sunday was spent on the couch, with the girlfriend, watching a marathon of Freaks And Geeks. Today I will attempt to reintegrate with the world at large. To help with this transistion I think Monday's power-up tune will have to come off the forthcoming MSTRKRFT debut. As a whole the album is so-so. It's basically dance music in the DFA 1979 vein (duh) and it's not far removed from the whole LCD Soundsystem, um, sound, although it is a bit more muscular and brutish. Simple but effective, I suppose. Anyway, I am really digging the track "She's Good For Business" and I think it's primarily because the girl's vocals are just so scrumptuous. She only sings a few words but each syllable counts and elicits the desired effect of causing the listener to salivate over the hopes of a mere glimpse of her wiggling hips. Listen and I think you'll see whatI mean.

MSTRKRFT "She's Good For Business"

Friday, July 07, 2006

Maybe I shouldn't buy a MacBook?

Cobra Starship.

If anyone has a good mp3 or m4a of that "Snakes On A Plane" song by Cobra Starship they want to send me, then that would make my Friday immeasurably better. Found it, but I'll still take a direct m4a rip of the CD single if any program directors are reading this...
It kinda snuck up on me.

It's Friday already?! Well, that is certainly welcome news since the last twenty-four hours have been a bit crap, so hopefully the weekend will make everything better. I have some old friends coming in town to play The Pontiac tomorrow night but other than that I have no plans aside from consuming DVDs and reading Wolfe.

How about you?

Thursday, July 06, 2006

The Tankboy Birthday Extravaganza!

It is exactly one week later so hopefully everyone has finally slept off those hangovers. Here are a few photos Photogal and I snapped to give you a taste of the evening. They only capture a fraction of everything that was going on so if you were there and took your own photos feel free to send them my way!

Early in the evening, a few people showed up. The patio was packed too but you can't see that through the garage doors...


Things began politely enough. In this photo Diane hasn't assaulted anyone, Gina hasn't doused anyone, and Debbie hasn't insulted anyone.


This little guy was by far the youngest person I've ever had attend one of my parties!


While it is true that I arrived late to my own party, I did immediately start DJing. Photogal took over shortly after my first few tunes so I could run around and say hi to people. This is what I look like when DJing. Yeah, the top of my head is real exciting, huh?


This is Eric. He makes funny faces. I like Eric bunches.


Gina begins to show signs of drinking too much as her head begins a 360-degree Reagan rotation. Seriously, doesn't this look Photoshopped? It isn't! Spooky, eh?


I don't know who the dude with the hat is, but this picture is worth it solely for Tom's expression. Also, Joey looks quite nice too, don't you thik?


To the right is Kelly D, who was nice enough to give me a new pair of headphones for my birthday! I think it might have also been her not-so-subtle way of telling me she wants to DJ at The Pontiac again...


Balthi is always open for a good natured smooch, right Balthi?


This is Highball Chris and his lovely wife. Whenever a camera goes off his face immediately assumes that position.


See?


Here's me and Debbie. She looks slightly annoyed. Maybe it was because I was tall and sweaty and she was short and dry and I was towering over her and invading her personal space. Sorry Debbie!


Daisy Glaze! Full-on! Yah yah yah!


Here is Mikey. He was the main bartender for the evening and he was awesome. He was helped out by a rotatating cast of Pontiac employess who would jump behind the bar when things got particularly hairy. Did I mention how awesome Mikey is?


This is why you don't give a drunk Tankboy a camera. At this point I was just taking random shots without even looking where the camera was pointing.


See?


Fagballs always slips into a state of bliss when I put my head on his shoulder.


This is Mark. He sings for a band (who is playing at Double Door tonight, by the way.) I heard some of his new album a few days later (more about that in a second) and I think it just may be Bible Of The Devil's best work yet. Thanks for coming by Mark!


The one. The only. The Buddy. Buddy owns The Pontiac and just may be the "Mayor of Wicker Park." Ask him about that party he and his brother went to with Prince that one time. It's a terrific story.


Josh designed the poster for the party. I love this picture for a million different reasons, but number one is that smile he's sporting.


This is Nate. he just got a cell phone for the first time and has grown addicted to texting people. He also has a sweet van that he gave me and some other folks a tour of a few nights later. It was in that van that I heard some of the new Bible Of The Devil disc.


This is my number one lady. Need I say any more?


Nick Ritz is also quite adept at making funny faces that defy logical notions of facial physics.


But Eric will still do him one better!


Gina! Stop messing up what could have been a nice picture of Chris and Debbie!


Ahhhhh. That's much better. Or did I mean to say, "Awwwwww?"


Double awwwwwwwwwww!


As is obvious here, the evening was filled with the rock and/or roll and was a total success. Maybe too much of a success since it was pretty hard to even move in the bar for the first few hours...


Thanks again to everyone who came out, all the bands that played, and the staff of The Pontiac for making this the best birthday show yet. Next year? I'm getting TripleFastAction, Woolworthy, Mil Mulliganos and The Smashing Pumpkins back together. Now that party's going to rock!