Posts Tagged ‘Midwest Music’

Performed January 3, 2016 at Front/Space in Kansas City, Missouri

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Today Adam Werven, otherwise known as Larry Wish, celebrates his 27th birthday. I like to imagine him in his Minneapolis apartment, bundled up in a rainbow afghan, eagerly awaiting a special birthday hotdish. In reality he’s writing grants and preparing for a standup comedy show, but three days prior he performed his last show of a two and a half week tour at Kansas City’s cozy (small) storefront arts venue, Front/Space. This gig marked Larry Wish‘s first appearance in Kansas City. He was supported by tourmate and friend Ray Jackson, or The Grow Fangs.

Both Werven and Jackson performed solo to a full house (that translates to about 35 or 40 bodies given the size of the space). The Grow Fangs followed the jangle-pop dance hall of supporting, local openers Toad Tartare with about 25 short, cheeky, high-energy punk rock tunes. He played on a guitar shaped like a shark through a borrowed amplifier and delivered screaming vocals that were equally impressive and amusing.

Larry Wish also had a minimal setup which strung an auxiliary cable from the PA to his boombox which contained the night’s set burned onto a CD. Wish was very animated. He mounted cinder blocks, wore them as shoes and meandered futilely about the performance area. He played air guitar, air drums, air saxophone, air everything while gesticulating wildly.

Wish‘s music utilizes pop, prog and compositional influences, features programmed or live drums and plenty of direct input and digital overdubbing. He sings, or rather, belts his vocals within a rich baritone register. The outcomes are both epic and whimsical, sincere yet playful. With proclamations like, “I just forget myself sometimes,” it’s hard to resist the notion that Werven is showing vulnerability.

For every few tracks of original material performed there was a karaoke cover of another. Typically these were slowed down versions of nineties grunge hits such as Nirvana‘s “In Bloom” or Pearl Jams‘ “Even Flow,” a combination of Werven’s 90’s adolescence and more recent love of Vaporwave. One such selection, however, was a cover of Donna Summer’s disco classic I Feel Love.” This latter song, as well as several others from the set, is taken from Wish‘s newest recording Born Outside My Window, released last October by Orange Milk Records.

Also represented by Orange Milk Records is Kansas City resident Scammers, or Phil Diamond. Diamond was billed to play with Larry Wish and The Grow Fangs, but cancelled late due to a sudden dental emergency. It would have been the first time the labelmates had met in person.

While his newest recording is a worthy listen, Werven is prolific. His bandcamp page holds over 50 recordings from over half a dozen projects dating back to 2007. While the lion’s share of these offerings fall under the Larry Wish moniker, many others are attributed to OcturbomangoSleeves and Used Condo (which has a cassette coming out by the end of the week on the Suite 309 label).

The recordings also vary greatly in approach. One recording titled TACE BEEL: TACE THE BEEL consists of empty, yet titled, tracks.”I did half the work, now the listener needs to do the other half and come up with the music.” said Werven in interview, comically suggesting that titling is half the job in song writing.

Some recordings are wholly digital creations while others are more traditional studio recordings. Throughout these works Werven’s primary concerned rests with creating something that feels right or appropriate for the recording rather than emulate a style or enter a particular school of thought.

Werven and Jackson’s tour carried them as far as Gainesville, Florida, and spanned two major holidays; Christmas and New Year’s. When asked why they decided to tour through the holiday season, when many people are indisposed spending time with family and friends, Werven stated it was more convenient because he had winter break from school. Unfortunately this also meant that neither Jackson or Werven’s bands could tour with them. Undaunted, the pair took the opportunity to visit friends and celebrated their holidays on the road.

Their final payout at the Front/Space gig was decent, more than enough to cover their six-plus-hour drive back to Minneapolis the next day. When I asked Werven if their income had been good during the entirety of the tour, he said it had been, but that he also wasn’t too concerned. Before they embarked he had taken out a small student loan to cover expenses, a technique he’s used in the past to make recordings and put out physical releases. I feel that anecdote epitomizes the attitude of many do it yourself musicians today, that is, cheerful and reckless.

Happy Birthday Adam. Cheers to you and recklessness.

-AWE

 

Listen to Larry Wish’s set now with the embed below

Or listen to Larry Wish‘s set later, with tracks titled and separated, by clicking the mediafire link below

https://www.mediafire.com/folder/gc78xrfnf2yn2/Larry_Wish

 

Setlist for Larry Wish

1. Yeah, Soon the Birds Will Wake Me Up Somewhere in the Vaseline [Used Condo]; intro

2. On One More Condition (:30)

3. Even Flow [Pearl Jam]; interlude (5:05)

4. Ubduction Redundant (5:27)

5. In Bloom [Nirvana]; interlude (10:49)

6. Unsound/Touched (11:20)

7. I Feel Love [Summer, Moroder, Bellotte] (14:08)

8. Man In the Box [Alice In Chains]; interlude (17:08)

9. Your Face [Maureen McElheron] (17:46)

10. Up-to-Me Books (20:08)

11. Been Caught Stealing [Jane’s Addiction]; outro

 

Click the link below to hear more music by Larry Wish

http://larrywish.bandcamp.com/

 

Click the link below to hear more music from Orange Milk

http://www.orangemilkrecords.com/

 

Click the link below to listen to The Grow Fangs

https://thegrowfangs.bandcamp.com/

 

Click the link below for more events from Front/Space

https://www.facebook.com/FrontSpaceKC/


Thanks to Adam Werven, Ray Jackson, Madeline Gallucci, Kendall Harbin, and Ian Teeple for making this show possible. Thanks to everyone that came and bought merchandise and paid door cover, you keep the dream alive. If you weren’t able to make it you can show your support by visiting Larry’s Bandcamp and buying something for goodness sakes. If you like this blog then kindly share it, subscribe to it, leave some comments, and keep reading. You can also like and follow the facebook page, https://www.facebook.com/bigurges, for more bonus material. Cheers!

Performed February 13, 2014 at FOKL in Kansas City, Kansas

Front man Kevin Boyer with his worn axe, and drummer in mid beat; Photo by Brock Hildebrandt

Front man Kevin Boyer with his worn axe and drummer Beren Elkine in mid beat repping the Wipers; Photo by Brock Hildebrandt

The ever caustic yet catchy Tyvek played their first Kansas City venue since forming in Detroit way back in 2004. Over the years their ever changing lineup has featured as many as five members at once. However, for their appearance at FOKLTyvek performed as a three piece, arguably their point of irreducible complexity. Front-man and founder Kevin Boyer was joined by drummer Beren Elkine (Eat Skull, The Intelligence), and a bassist simply referred to as “Scott.”

Despite having never played KC, this isn’t Tyvek’s first visit to the area. They played Scion’s garage-rock fest in Lawrence a few years back, and have since returned to LFK to perform again. Typically a show such as this would default to Lawrence, but it seems FOKL‘s formula of budget friendly, all ages, BYOB events has been attracting more and more national mid-sized acts.

The crowd was sizable for a Thursday, but there was still plenty of room inside FOKL to find a private, dark corner. Tyvek’s 14 song set included tracks off all of their full lengths and spanned over 45 minutes. Some of their songs were by the book (such as Air Conditioner) while others were extended versions, maybe with another song mashed into the end (i.e. Returns running into Little Richard). One song, Underwater, featured a guitar rig malfunction caused by a stage climbing fan. Boyer, without missing a word, kept singing and managed to fix his dilemma in time for the solo. The end product is a good example of Tyvek’s adaptability. They took adversity and made it into something listenable. It’s most likely this sort of attitude that has allowed them to persist for over a decade with no signs of slowing down.

-AWE

 

Editor’s notes:

I am proud to say Kevin Boyer is planning on releasing Big Urges’ recording of Tyvek’s set as a “live at fokl” cassette! This sort of occasion is business as usual for the prolific musician, but a new precedent for the blog! Updates to come, as new information surfaces.

 

Listen to Tyveks set now with the embed below (45:30)

Listen to Tyvek’s set later, with tracks already separated, by clicking the mediafire link below

https://www.mediafire.com/folder/d3chxvdzxwwcv/Tyvek

 

Set List for Tyvek

1. Scaling

2. Stop Start (4:43)

3. City of a Dream (6:13)

4. Say Yeah–>Midwest Basements (7:24)

5. Air Conditioner (13:01)

6. Mary Ellen Claims (16:30)

7. Underwater (19:27)

8. Underwater To (22:07)

9. Returns–>Little Richard (28:03)

10. Give It Up (36:38)

11. Future Junk (40:54)

12. Sea Walls (43:00)

 

For More Tyvek Click the Links Below:

Bandcamp

Facebook

 

For More Photos by Brock Hildebrandt Please Visit:

F Stops and K Holes

 

Thank you to the members of Tyvek for allowing their performance to be recorded, and a double-thanks to them for their interest in issuing its release as a cassette! BigUrges.com will update when the tape drops. Until then, show your support for Tyvek by trucking over to their website and buying something. If you like this blog then kindly share it, subscribe to it, leave some comments, and keep reading. You can also like and follow the facebook page, https://www.facebook.com/bigurges, for more bonus material!

Performed December 14, 2013 at Harling’s in Kansas City, Missouri

Bummer 12/14/13

Bummer; Underage overdrive. Photo by Andrew Erdrich

Finding a few minors amidst the crowd at Harling’s is to be expected. The bar does hold a certain reputation, but perhaps that’s all changing. The doorman is now checking ID’s and taking money, the main hookup Derrick has moved on to be a butcher’s apprentice, the bubbling paint on the ceiling is seemingly repaired, and there’s a new “talent up-charge” for drinks on show nights. Yet last Saturday I stood witness to Bummer, a three piece fresh outta high school, pummeling an audience mostly ten years their senior. Maybe Harling’s hasn’t changed that much.

This was the first time I had actually listened to Bummer and frankly I was impressed. Sure, they may be a reboot of dissonant hard rock from the 90’s, but they’re still young, they can evolve. Besides, some people (like yours truly) still like that sort of thing. I also admire the way they shamelessly lay their influences out in the open by covering The Jesus Lizard’s “Seasick,” or running through a few measures of Nirvana’s “Heart-Shaped Box.” They clearly acknowledge their lineage. These guys are no slouches either; Bummers show at Harling’s followed an earlier show at The Dollhouse. Let’s hope college doesn’t break up the band.

-AWE

Listen to Bummers set now with the embed below (21:50)

Listen to Bummer’s set later, with tracks already separated, by clicking the mediafire link below

https://www.mediafire.com/folder/jc0w14394b7pk//Bummer

Set List for Bummer

1. Infinite Witches

2. Good News (2:00)

3. Estocata (4:26)

4. Dude Baby (9:01)

5. Dorm Water (12:42)

6. Seasick [The Jesus Lizard] (16:37)

7. Sports (19:42)

For More Bummer Click the Link Below

https://www.facebook.com/BummerKC

http://bummerkc.bandcamp.com/

Thanks to the young men of Bummer for allowing me to record their set. They are scarce on physical media, but you can still support them by going to their shows, liking their facebook page, or forking over some cash for digital downloads on their bandcamp site. Thanks to you readers for staying with me. This will most likely be the last post until the new year as I am away on holiday. As always, your shares, subscribes, comments, likes, and continued readership are always appreciated. Have a great holiday!

Performed November 23, 2013 at FOKL in Kansas City, Kansas

Another night at FOKL. It’s cold inside and out, but the turnout is decent. Most people are hanging out in the foyer recently turned smoking lobby, or milling about the show floor waiting for the change over. The show was billed as a fundraiser for Kansas City’s independent theater the Tivoli. “GO DIGITAL OR GO DARK…SAVE THE TIVOLI,” exclaims the hand bill. While I doubt the amount of money raised could be anything but marginal, it remains a kind gesture from one community minded organization to another.

On the flip side, music-for-the-cause doesn’t seem to fit the HŮMΔN ŦRΔFFIC aesthetic. Their new industrial, ALL CAPS, cyber goth doesn’t exactly scream charity, yet there they are. If the gamble was to find an electronic band that had a draw, then it may have paid off. HŮMΔN ŦRΔFFIC has managed to endear themselves to the morbidly inclined of Kansas City while entering into the normal rotation of the local underground. Their sets are aggressive, dark, and loud. Vocals are buried beneath a digital din, while audio collages recorded onto cassette segue one song into another. Their FOKL showing didn’t deviate from this formula.

Like Metatone, HŮMΔN ŦRΔFFIC occupies a niche more or less unclaimed by other KC bands. This could help them to stand out, but it could also typecast them. I understand the need for an aesthetic. It helps contextualize the music, create an environment, and even align the band to certain musical trends. It’s part of the whole package. In many ways HŮMΔN ŦRΔFFIC‘s image is complete and cohesive, from their clothes, song titles, and even their band name. Again, the risk is that this image could become a limiting factor which would relegate HŮMΔN ŦRΔFFIC into the category of novelty. Time will tell.

-AWE

Listen to HŮMΔN ŦRΔFFICs set now with the embed below (27:58)

Listen to HŮMΔN ŦRΔFFIC’s set later, with tracks already separated, by clicking the mediafire link below

https://www.mediafire.com/folder/rzz51wjnupqh5/

Set List for HŮMΔN ŦRΔFFIC

1. WIDOW MAKER

2. TURBO SLUT (5:01)

3. EATING PATTERN (8:42)

4. BLOOD ORPHAN (14:43)

5.  FVTVREPVNK (19:15)

6. GOTH RAVE (24:15)

For More HŮMΔN ŦRΔFFIC Click the Link Below

http://humantraffic.bandcamp.com/

https://www.facebook.com/HUMANxTRAFFIC

Although this recording was initially made without permission, the crew of HŮMΔN ŦRΔFFIC has since graciously sanctioned it. Show your support for their music by visiting their various web pages and liking their facebook page. If you think this blog is worth chattering about then kindly share it, subscribe to it, leave some comments, and keep reading. You can also like and follow the facebook page (located at  https://www.facebook.com/bigurges) for more bonus material and update notifications!

Performed November 1, 2013 at FOKL in Kansas City, Kansas

Mike Donovan is best known as the front man of the recently defunct Sic Alps. Their final release, a single titled She’s On Top, came out a little more than six months ago in May. Wasting no time, Donovan dropped his first solo LP Wot in October on Drag City, and is currently on the road in support of the release.

Show time at FOKL began a little behind schedule as result of some late load in’s and the implementation of a common practice called “Waiting-for-more-people-to-show-up” (which they rarely do). It was just shy of midnight by the time Donovan took the stage and the crowd was thin. That’s hard luck in my opinion. A place like FOKL should be bustling at midnight on a Friday, but unfortunately the show was booked directly following Halloween. It’s likely most of the people who would attend such a show instead hit up any number of the midtown, spillover costume parties.

Mike Donovan’s set was modest, not just in terms of length, but in terms of sonic abrasion. The singer/songwriter aesthetic is a departure from many of Sic Alps’ more noisy recordings. At another glance though, Donovan’s current offerings aren’t too far from where he left off with Sic Alps. Don’t call it more of the same, call it a continuation.

-AWE

Listen to Mike Donovans set now with the embed below (31:09)

Listen to Mike Donovan’s set later, with tracks already separated, by clicking the mediafire link below

http://www.mediafire.com/folder/s3gp6hxrao2sz/Mike_Donovan

Set List for Mike Donovan

1. Do Do Ya?

2. MP3 Farm

3. R. Reg

4. The Kid

5. New Fieldhand Bop

6. Sic Ballad

7. Bloom

8. Untitled

For More Mike Donovan Click the Link Below

http://www.mikedonovanusa.com/

This recording was made with the permission of Mike Donovan. If you like his music then you should show your support by visiting his website and picking up his new LP Wot. If you like this blog then kindly share it, subscribe to it, leave some comments, and keep reading. You can also like and follow the facebook page (located at  https://www.facebook.com/bigurges) for more bonus material!

Performed October 29, 2013 at Plush in Saint Louis, Missouri

Mosquito Bandito

Mosquito Bandito, drunk again, at Plush’s upstairs lounge. Photo by Andrew Erdrich

To some, John Larson, the one man bandito known as Mosquito Bandito, is a legend. He’s toured extensively in various bands and as a solo performer; lived in cities across the country; built a rock n’ roll oasis (The Middle East) by rehabbing downtrodden homes in the east side of Kansas City; and shown unbelievable innovation in his pursuit of being cheap as possible. This spawn of Michigan has also spent much of his life fulfilling the dreams of a five-year-old; owning numerous motorcycles, shooting guns in his basement, having free and open access to a four-player Blitz Arcade Machine, and stocking his very own Pepsi brand soda dispenser with yard beer. To me, however, Johnny is not just an entertaining and talented musician, but a good friend. There are few people I would rather be crammed next to in a St. Louis bound, mid-sized SUV.

For your convenience (and mine) I’ve bullet pointed some highlights from our trip:

• The sound guy never really decided just exactly what he wanted that kick drum to sound like, enjoy!

• Beer ticket exchange was confusing and often disappointing, but Johnny managed to drink too much whiskey anyway

• Most of the money made that night was blown on crave cases of jalapeño and cheese sliders from White Castle

Sneaky Creeps was the only act that was not a one-man-band

• Isaac, once again, managed to find someone to bum him a cigarette

• The car ride home smelled bad

-AWE

Listen to Mosquito Banditos set now with the embed below (17:57)

Listen to Mosquito Bandito’s set later, with tracks already separated, by clicking the mediafire link below

http://www.mediafire.com/folder/wum17zf7qc0og/Mosquito_Bandito

Set List for Mosquito Bandito

1. Alcohol

2. Pillow Fight/Satan (1:57)

3. Paint In a Bag (4:51)

4. Martin Luther King [Touchers] (7:24)

5. Art School (9:47)

6. Baby Teeth (11:34)

7. She Said [Hasil Adkins] (11:54)

For More Mosquito Bandito Click the Link Below

https://myspace.com/mosquitobandito

This recording was made and posted with permission of your friend and mine, John Larson. If you like his tunes then next time you see him playing buy him a drink or maybe one of his many dust collecting seven inches. If you like this blog then kindly share it, subscribe to it, leave some comments, and keep reading. Also, a facebook page for Big Urges is up at https://www.facebook.com/bigurges, so click it for more bonus material and like the page to help spread the word!

Performed October 8, 2013 at FOKL in Kansas City, Kansas

IS/IS in Low Light on a Tuesday Night, Photo By Andrew Erdrich

IS/IS in Low Light on a Tuesday Night, Photo By Andrew Erdrich

If Mondays are bad, it’s because they’re followed by Tuesdays. Monday is the initial, shocking submergence into a freezing pond that is the work week, serving to numb your senses until you reach the weekend shore. Tuesday, however, is worse than that. It is droll, incessant, and does not bring cause for celebration such as Wednesday or “Hump Day,” but resignation that the grind will persist four days more. Tuesday is so insidious that Monday has become the scapegoat for the true evil that is acquiescence.

IS/IS was the weekend manifest on a Tuesday.

This washed out, femme powered, three piece consists of Sarah Rose (guitar and vocals), Sarah Nienaber (bass), and Ronnie Lee (drums). Okay, so Ronnie is a dude. Does that hurt the image? The coven may be broken but the band held together, and they seem to be doing alright. Their stop in Kansas City was the end of a first leg of shows following a recording session in the southwest. I’m guessing many of these new, as yet to be released tracks, were played during their set because I’ve had the damnedest time identifying them. From here they’re headed back home to Minneapolis for a show and brief respite before another two months or so of national touring. I predict they’ll be around for at least another big tour, and judging by the helluva-Tuesday-night-turn-out on the 8th, I assume they’ll be returning to Kansas City as well. Bravo all.

-AWE

Listen to IS/ISs set now with the embed below (32:13)

Listen to IS/IS’s set later, with tracks already separated, by clicking the mediafire link below

http://www.mediafire.com/folder/9o28pab3vzd7a/IS_IS

Set List for IS/IS

1. Unknown 1

2. Unknown 2 (2:35)

3. Unknown 3 (6:05)

4. Shine Down (9:13)

5. Unknown 4 (13:22)

6. Gleam (16:55)

7. Unknown 5 (21:05)

8. Unknown 6 (24:52)

9. Hunter (28:43)

For More IS/IS Click the Link Below

http://is-is.bandcamp.com/

https://www.facebook.com/isisisaband

This recording was made and posted with permission of the very amiable members of IS/IS. If you like their music then you should show your support by visiting their website and buying some wares so maybe they can afford gas on their cross-country tour. If you like this blog then kindly share it, subscribe to it, leave some comments, and keep reading. Also, a facebook page for Big Urges has been recently created find it here at https://www.facebook.com/bigurges, so click it for more bonus material and like the page to help spread the word!

Performed October 5, 2013 at The Middle East in Kansas City, Missouri

Torben in the red-lit basement of The Middle East, Phote by Andy Erdrich

Torben in the red-lit basement of The Middle East, Photo by Andrew Erdrich

In the short span of their existence Torben garnered high esteem within the KC underground for delivering unforgivable, riff laden, heavy metal. This three piece matriarch of death is composed of Danni Parelman on guitar, Anna St. Louis on bass, and Libby Zanders on drums. Their untimely end is a result of bassist Anna St. Louis, who also pulls double-duty in Bloodbirds, moving out of town.

Torben‘s popularity was evident when upon witnessing the sheer number of people who turned out for their their last showing at The Middle East. The double backyard was so full it made me wonder if anyone was even inside to watch the bands. All doubts were dashed once I realized the basement was too packed to accommodate another person. Torben‘s set was modest, only about 30 minutes, but the crowd urged them for an encore and were rewarded with a truncated version of Motörhead‘s “Lost Johnny.”

Among the artifacts Torben leave behind are a short five song, self-titled demo; this live recording; and perhaps another (most likely better mixed) version of the same show, courtesy of Mike Tuley. As for the future, Parelman and Zanders are still playing in Peace Warriors alongside Jordan Carr of Dark Ages, so maybe seeing them will fill the newly created Torben shaped void in your head. No guarantees.

-AWE

Listen to Torbens set now with the embed below (32:26)

Listen to Torben’s set later, with tracks already separated, by clicking the mediafire link below

http://www.mediafire.com/folder/phnsta73qnd33/Torben

Set List for Torben

1. Second Coming [Alice Cooper cover]

2. Blood (2:03)

3. Burning World (4:20)

4. Working Man’s Sabbath (6:31)

5. Mother Sludge (9:23)

6. Psyched to Die [Deep Wound cover] (12:16)

7. Runner (14:12)

8. Zone Boss (18:46)

9. Deposer (20:48)

10. Guts [Budgie] (23:58)

11. Heavy Loader (27:04)

12.Lost Johnny [Mötorhead cover] (30:51)

For More Torben click the link below

http://torben.bandcamp.com/

This recording was created with permission from the stand up members of Torben, who will be missed both as a symbols of strong independent women and for their impeccable skill in melting faces. Mothers of sludge, may your ghost live on!

If you like this blog then kindly share it, subscribe to it, leave some comments, and keep reading. Also, a facebook page for Big Urges has been recently created find it here at https://www.facebook.com/bigurges, so click it for more bonus material and like the page to help spread the word!

Performed September 28, 2013 at Front Space in Kansas City, Missouri

Calvin Johnson dancing while singing an a cappella version of a Hive Dwellers tune, Photo by Andrew Erdrich

Calvin Johnson dancing while singing an a cappella version of a The Hive Dwellers “Sitting Alone At the Movies.” Photo by Andrew Erdrich

Any review of Calvin Johnson is obliged to mention his place as the Grand-Wizard of the Northwestern underground, earned through his founding of K Records and his lead role in such influential bands as Beat Happening, Dub Narcotic Sound System, and The Halo Benders. As significant as Johnson may be, the indie underground circuit is still–cough, cough–underground. So we find our hero at the modest yet adequate Front Space, an intimate gallery located just blocks from Kansas City’s new performing arts center, plopped in the middle of the crossroads arts district. The numerous onlookers are cozied up, seated on the ground smiling while completely rapt by Johnson’s sing-song story time. Days after, the occasional lament from those who, “Would have attended had I known about it,” doesn’t surprise me in the least; legendary cult status carries no guarantees of wide distribution, street teams, or promotional reach.

Johnson’s set was mostly acoustic, with intermittent a cappella pieces, all combined with free form dancing (pictured above). In fact, if you listen closely to the recording, you can here subtle variations in the sounds of his voice and guitar coinciding with a sudden twirl or a moment of turning his back on the audience. It’s all part of the show, which of course can sometimes fail to be adequately captured via recording (aural or visual). Years ago when Johnson’s first solo album “dropped” reviewer William Bowers was aggravated by the lack of drums and overbearing presence of vocal-only-tunes. He may not have taken into account Johnson’s at-the-time-newly-realized path of (what he calls in track 14) a traveling, wayfaring, troubadour. As such, Johnson’s true value as a performer may be bound to the “You had to have been there” qualities of the troubadours, where record is a wanting replacement for in-person experience.

-AWE

Listen to Calvin Johnson’s set now with the embed below (1:07:00)

Listen to Calvin Johnson’s set later, with tracks already separated, by clicking the mediafire link below

http://www.mediafire.com/folder/qd7mktwsr32fz/Calvin_Johnson

Set List for Calvin Johnson

1. Ambulance Driver Blues [Amelia, Peter, Scott + Calvin]

2. Love Will Come Back Again (3:08)

3. Unknown [Lazy Mondays*] (7:06)

4. Unknown [Gallow’s Wine*] (10:57)

5. Sitting Alone At the Movies [The Hive Dwellers] (13:42)

6. Pine Shaped Box [The Hive Dwellers](18:16)

7. Can We Kiss? (22:30)

8. Apple To The Core** (26:53)

9. Farmer’s Market Interlude (30:30)

10. Kick These Boots** (33:13)

11. When You Are Mine (36:58)

12. Unknown [Every Woman*] (43:52)

13. Somebody’s Phone Is Ringing [The Hive Dwellers] (46:18)

14. Recycled Sounds Interlude (48:56)

15. Shake-A-Puddin’ [Dub Narcotic Sound System] (50:41)

16. Diamonds Are Forever [Shirley Bassey] (54:40)

17. Platinum Slumbers [The Halo Benders, Unreleased] (57:48)

18. Get In [The Hive Dwellers] (1:02:01)

For More Calvin Johnson, K Records, or other affiliated acts click the link below

http://shop.krecs.com/

I’m also including a link to my favorite Beat Happening track out of sheer self-indulgence. Enjoy!

When I asked Calvin Johnson if I could make this recording he replied, “Do whatever you want,” which I always do anyway, but thanks to Calvin for that affirmation. Show your affirmation for him and his efforts by supporting K Records and the litany of bands on their roster. If you like this blog then kindly share it, subscribe to it, leave some comments, and keep reading. Thanks much!

*These are my working titles for these songs as I was unable to find a precedent for them somewhere else

**This song has been titled and credited in other places but I am unable to find it on a specific recording anywhere

Performed September 26, 2013 at The Brick in Kansas City, Missouri

Keith Rankin, a.k.a. Giant Claw, performing. Photo by Andrew Erdrich

Keith Rankin, a.k.a. Giant Claw, performing. Photo by Andrew Erdrich

Electronic night at The Brick opened with the premier of Kansas City’s Human Traffic, who managed to smuggle in their underage member Anthony, but weren’t able to keep the lid on it. Funny to me, but not the bar staff. Closing the evening was local DIY favorite Scammers who wasted no time harassing the audience and the sound man. Combine the two acts and you’ve antagonized everyone on either side of the bar.

Sandwiched between the locals acts was the socially passive Giant Claw from Ohio. The sole member of Giant Claw, Keith Rankin, performed several lengthy, improvisational pieces. While at times meandering, Rankin shied away from extended soloing in favor of reiteration of melodic phrases and arpeggios. By avoiding self-indulgence and emphasizing repetition, the music remained meditative and introverted, even when it had groove.

During the performance the bar was rife with chatter from the crowd whose limited participation relegated Giant Claw’s performance to background music for a conversation. However, Rankin didn’t seem to mind and he kept the sounds flowing. This apparent laid back demeanor may belie his prolific output and eye to detail. Case in point; he sound-checked his microphone only to briefly introduce himself and make a plug for his suitcase full of tapes and vinyl, all of which happen to be distributed from his own label Orange Milk.

-AWE

Listen to Giant Claw’s set now with the embed below (32:27)

Listen to Giant Claw’s set later, with tracks already separated, by clicking the mediafire link below*

http://www.mediafire.com/folder/qf9jah3494j8a/Giant_Claw

Set list for Giant Claw*

1. Untitled

2. Untitled II (14:43)

3. Untitled III (27:26)

For More Giant Claw click the links below

http://giantclaw.bandcamp.com/

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Giant-Claw/191804144175430

This recording was made and posted with permission of Kieth Rankin, who’s not just a musician, but a really nice guy. Help a nice guy eat by visiting his webpages and purchasing some wares. If you like post/blog then leave a comment, share with your friends, and subscribe. Bye now!

*Editor’s Note: Since these songs are improvisational, they are untitled and transition from one into without pause. As it’s not overtly evident where one song ends and the other begins, I’ve separated tracks in a way that seemed to make the most sense to me.