Archive for May, 2013

Performed May 16, 2013 at Palmer’s, Minneapolis, Minnesota

At about 10:30 in the morning I received a text message from Phil Diamond a.k.a. Scammers. Phil had a show that night in Minneapolis but he didn’t have a ride up to it from KC. He’d been soliciting people via facebook for about 10 days but all his best leads had fallen through. Fortunately my long time friend Andy Montee (yes, his name is also “Andy”) had just returned from his first year of grad school, and I thought he might be looking for something to do. A few calls made, a few texts sent, and a couple hours later all three of us were seated inside Andy’s 2005 Honda Civic Hybrid. Eight hours after that we arrived in Minneapolis at Palmer’s, a seemingly diverse neighborhood bar seated amidst some high-rise projects. Phil informed me a lot of Somalian refugees lived in this area hence the projects.

While hanging around Palmer’s waiting for the show to start we convinced the bartender that Andy and I were “In-The-Band” with PhilWe drank our free yard beer and smoked cigarettes on the massive backdoor patio while meeting the members of the night’s opener, Coral Legs. These were some of Phil’s friends and he told me all the guys in Coral Legs had their own solo projects and played together in other bands. They all seemed like fairly genial guys, that were probably drinking age but not by much. They promised a short set. As they setup I stuck my recorder (the door man’s suggestion, thanks door man) on the platform of a suspended box television. That night Coral Legs were four; Brian and Tim on keys/drum machines, Sam on guitar, and John on the kit. There were no vocals. Their set consisted of improvised, easy-going beats separated by sparser, ambient passages. For me the latter was their biggest achievement. After seeing many shows with performers who “transition” each song into the next by looping the last couple seconds or creating a din of noise until they’re prepared for the next song, it was nice to hear genuine transition from “a” to “b” to “c.” While their set did not show a vast range emotionally or musically, they did only play for 15 minutes. It’s pretty hard to fuck up a 15 minute jam session especially when you’re as comfortable playing together as these guys seemed to be, and they nailed it. Coral Legs is a fairly new band, but I have a hunch they’ll keep performing together for a while. If you’re in Minneapolis on any Tuesday this coming August they’ll be performing at the Kitty Cat Klub. Tell them you’re from KC and maybe they’ll want to make their here sometime.

Scammers played second for about 45 minutes. Phil was playing with some new material, a new vocal toy, and drinking off-brand NyQuil. I thought it was a riot, and so did other a lot of other people. I chose not to record him because I felt I needed video as well as audio for a Scammers show, and I’m currently unable to do him that justice. One day perhaps…

Last to perform were Minneapolis locals Shakin’ Babies. Half the people at Palmer’s seemed to be there for them, which is a good for Phil, but they seemed to play for a long-ass time. They were fine musicians but I guess I wasn’t in the mood for revival, garage, surf-rock. Don’t get me wrong, I like Link Wray, The Ventures, and The Beach Boys like most people, but that vein seems a bit strip-mined these days, and I’m a little bored with it. Rock on anyway I guess.


Listen to Coral Legs’ set now with the embed below (15:00)

Listen to Coral Legs set later with the mediafire download below

For more Coral Legs visit these links below

Editor’s notes

Sorry no photos this time.

Special thanks to Andy Montee for being our secret-ginger, white knight, and Coral Legs for hooking up the show. Thanks to your help Phil miraculously turned a profit on this one day excursion. Good luck to Phil Diamond in L.A. This posting is dedicated to all of you.

This recording was posted with permission from Coral Legs. Isn’t that cool?

Performed May 15, 2013 at East Wing, Kansas City, MO

Nature Boys, Photo by Andrew Erdrich

Nature Boys, Photo by Andrew Erdrich











KC’s own Nature Boys are much beloved in the community for good reason; they bring it every time. Every bill I’ve seen them play there are at least 60 people in the crowd to see them (which is a lot for a dark, wet basement) as they smash through a twenty-plus minute set without going soft for a second. What’s most surprising is that they are still (in my mind) a fairly straight forward rock n’ roll band. Danny Fischer plays guitar, with Suzanne Hogan on bass (they split vocal duties), Aaron Rommel is the drummer, and that’s it. They leave it frills free and raw. A little distortion and overdrive here, some screaming and harmonizing there, and not much else. Very “punk.” Their best songs for me however, songs like Scary Larry or Babylon (track number 5 in the bootleg recording posted below) seem to be something other than “punk” songs. While that lineage still exists, through some creative divination they’ve moved into other territory. This is what I feel sets them apart.

Nature Boys‘ show last Wednesday at the East Wing lived up to all expectations. That night was a “Cardboard Cutout Costume Party” most likey in honor of the touring band Moira Scar (I’ll talk about them below). Danny was wearing a woman’s spread eagle legs on his face and Suzanne was some sort of shark attacking a boat or something. Eventually they ditched the outfits, but they didn’t need the getups to get the crowd riled anyhow. Bodies were surfing, bottles were being chucked, and people were visibly singing along. What most impressed me about their performance was their awareness of their instrument volume in relation to vocal volume. You can actually hear them singing, an incredibly rare feat for a DIY basement show. That being said their lack of sheer volume didn’t take away from their drive or aggression. Opening the night was KC’s Palace Neapolitan, followed by Nature Boys who were playing in support of the touring band Moira Scar from Oakland. Closing out the night was another KC group Wasted Management.

Moira Scar, Photo By Andrew Erdrich

Moira Scar, Photo By Andrew Erdrich











Moira Scar are a costume wearing, gender bending, instrument hopping, carnival troupe of chaos. As unique as that combination may sound it also perfectly describes other Oakland area groups such as Idiot Flesh or Sleepytime Gorilla Museum. Fortunately their similarity to Moira Scar is mostly limited to their shared aesthetics. Yes, they wear androgynous costumes and use pseudonyms, but wait; Moira Scar is not eight members but three, and while their music is a bit carnival-esque it’s also very gritty, danceable, electropunk. Furthermore their use of brass is golden and they ditched most of the theatrics in lieu of straight rocking out. Did they adjust their set for the night’s crowd? I’m not sure, but it was a relief to me to not have sat through ten minute monologues or spooky-weirdo-not-as-good-as-actual-noise-bands soundscapes. That being said, their costuming was not posturing as “Over-the-top” was still present in their songs/performance, a lot of which came through their vocals which, admittedly, I liked (even the pseudo-operatic parts).

Moira Scar is Roxy Monoxide (vocals, guitar, sax, keyboard, drums), Lu Lu Gamma Ray (vocals, synthesizer, trombone, sampler, drums), and Ryan Bonus Beast (drums and bass). Their headlining set lasted for about 40 minutes from 11:30 to 12:15. I put $5 in the hat and bought their newest “recorded at home, mastered in the studio” album Scarred For Life for $7. If my spending/donating is any indication of how the night went on a larger scale then I’m guessing they made enough money to drive the van to the next gig. Success?


Listen to Nature Boys‘ set now with the embed below (22:04)

Listen to Nature Boys’ set later with tracks already separated with the mediafire download below

Track List For Nature Boys

1. Dr. Claw

2. Boot Stew (3:53)

3. Future Boys (9:11)

4. Mr. Sniffers (11:57)

5. Babylon (14:31)

6. Movin’ In (17:34)

7. You Suck (20:14)

For More Nature Boys go to their website:

Listen to Moira Scars set now with the embed below (38:28)

Listen to Moira Scar‘s set later with tracks already separated with the mediafire download below

Track List For Moira Scar

1. Damaged Control/Escaped Mechanic

2. Gotta Get Out (5:40)

3. Miss Funktion (8:37)

4. Organ Grinder (11:54)

5. De/Monster/A-Tiff (15:58)

6. Telepathos (19:10)

7. Nina Dantor (22:03)

8. Tarantula Tangoid (25:32)

9. Demon Lover (30:32)

10. Someday Cockroaches Will Rule The World (33:30)

For more Moira Scar go to their website:

These recordings were posted with permission from these independent artists. Visit their websites, see their shows, and buy their stuff. You’ll be broke even if you don’t so just do it anyway.

Performed May 14, 2013 at Micheal’s Loft, Kansas City, MO

Photo By Mary O'Brien

Photo By Mary O’Brien

Photo By Brock Hildebrandt

Photo By Brock Hildebrandt

Outside World  are a lo-fi, DIY trio from Chicago. The band features Ben Scott (Guitar and Vocals), Hazel Rigby (Bass and Vocals), and Evan Jenkins (Drums). Their music combines elements of psych, rock, noise, pop and sheer loudness. Their couple of self-released tape recordings (Outside World and Seaside Nowhere, both 2012) don’t seem to quite capture the relentless groove in Major they bring to their live show, but at least you can hear the vocals. Both times I’ve seen Outside World their PA setups didn’t stand a chance once they blew up the space with their stage volume. Personally I’d take the rawness of their live show to their (by comparison) somewhat restrained recorded offerings. For this particular occasion they performed in my friend Micheal’s loft apartment in the Crossroads district of KCMO. Kansas City’s own Wanin’ Peppa’ and Dated opened. Outside World started around quarter to 11 and played a rock solid half hour of music to about 40 people. I felt as though a good number of the songs seemed familiar from their last visit, but upon cross-checking their set list with their available recordings most of them seem new and off the market. This leads me to believe a new recording is imminent. As a side note I noticed their live set didn’t seem to contain anything like their slower, quiter tracks (such as Seems So True or You May Think) which may be a direct attempt to keep the crowd energy up. Hopefully KC makes them feel welcome enough to come back and play another. I know I’d like to see them again.


Listen now with the below embed (32:51)

Listen later with tracks already separated with the mediafire download below

Track List

1. “Fills”

2. All Day – at 3:55

3. Outside World – at 7:51

4. “Center” – at 13:18

5. “Flying” – at 16:44

6. “Inside” – at 19:36

7. “Due” – at 24:06

8. “Stain” – at 27:00

For more check out these links below:

Outside World’s Facebook

Outside World’s Bandcamp
These recordings were recorded and posted with permission from the band members of Outside World, because they’re clearly cool dudes.