Monday, September 25, 2006

The Hourly Radio & Rolling Stone

It's about time that Rolling Stone found the best Brit-pop band that's not British.
Check the issue with Jack Nicholson on the cover;
Editors' Top 5 picks.

damned right.

Thursday, September 21, 2006

How to write a record review

1. Don't become friends with the band.
It sucks to write about your friends. Especially if you thought Album One was brilliant, and Album Two, well, so isn't. And you will be accused of gladhanding your friends' work, implying that you have no objectivity. Yeah, well, you don't. And so what?

2. Write for the people who might buy the album.
Oh! Controversy! Why would you write a review of something you didn't like (and would never buy) unless your editor assigned it to you? Kill your ego and your tendency to pontificate. The world has changed. Amazon, TexasGigs, the band websites, myspaces, and downloading mean that listeners can easily weed out what they don't want to hear. Say something to those who will want to listen.

3. Allow your reader to form their own opinion.
You'd think this would be elementary.

4. Write a story.
Spin a tale, tell the reader who you are, what you think, why. Spin another tale about who the band is, what they think, why. Do it in 400 words or less.

5. The worst press is no press.
Hate it? Kill it. Say nothing. It's mightily effective. Of course, the temptation to ream is enticing. But that's all about you and not about them. You do get that, don't you? Leave it to those who have refined the artform and made a forum for it. You don't have the chops anyway.

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Lousy Robot, Smile Like You’re Somewhere Else

Smile Like You’re Somewhere Else

produced by John Dufilho, engineered by Salim Nourallah at Pleasantry Lane Studios in Dallas, TX.

Opening with a volley of Jet-like guitar and "yeahs!" and lapsing into the post-punk that defines the band, Smile Like You’re Somewhere Else is more, better Lousy Robot . A year of work under their belts, plus a renewed relationship with engineer Salim Nourallah and producer John Dufilho (Deathray Davies) have created another fun, danceable album. Having a bad day? Not quite happy with life? Pop in this CD, and adjust your groove. "Slower" is the dirge of the album until it slips quietly into a trancelike, swaying melody. Jack Moffitt adds moody, psychedelic keys to the pop. Jim Phillip’s concise and quirky lyrics take ordinary anxieties and make them universal and trifling. Channeling the Ramonesand early Beatles influences, Lousy Robot builds a sound that is both evocative and fresh. Contributions by Dallas heavy-hitters Johnny Lloyd Rollins, Cory Watson, (Black Tie Dynasty), John Lefler (Dashboard Confessional), and both Nourallah and Dufilho highlight the potential of this Albuquerque band. Not since The Shins left the Land of Enchantment has an unsigned quartet inspired collaboration of this caliber. Lousy Robot’s sophomore album is lusher than The Strange and True Story of Your Life and just as fun. Help me count the ways that I say, “Yeah!”

Song highlights: “Mr. Falls Apart,” “Help Me Count the Ways I Say ‘Yeah!’,” “A Way of Overstating.”

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

The Lord Henry, Zoo Palace

produced in part by Stuart Sikes, Bass Propulsion Labs, Dallas TX

Zoo Palace, the sophomore album of The Lord Henry, is in advance release and the show will be on October 21st here in Dallas. Sexy, sultry bad boys, TLH swagger, NYC style, up from Austin. Think Strokes, Louis XIV, and Brendan Benson.

Clinton Piper solos into the audience, titilating the prep school pretties of the front row. On his knees, close enough to touch, Piper's the alluring, pouty rock star. The songwriter of the band of brothers, Billy Potts, Grant Piper, and the latest addition, Josh from SanFran, Clinton's the lead and the emotion. Fast and furious on his guitar, he's ripped through his own fingers, blood spattering the strings, rather than slow down and grab a new pick. "Fire on 42nd Street" is the
de riguer love song to New York, and "So So So" is remade from Voila.

Voila, the first EP, was a purposely analog and constrained album, meant to be performed live by just Piper on guitar and Potts drumming and singing backup. Zoo Palace though, is more expansive; The Lord Henry as a full, gorgeous band. Stuart Sikes (oh christ, just google him, his catalog is impressive) had a hand in about half the songs. The Lord Henry is frenzied guitars, over-the-top drumming, keys that fill your ears, and pure energy and sweat. They are the insane afterparty, but at the end of Zoo Palace, they slow down to quiet chilling. "Jilina," a beautful, raw Beatles-esque songlette, and "Loss of Love Says Hi" is Piper at his most vulnerable; the player taking stock. Potts even gets dreamy on "Loss of Love Says Hi" (love the title; beautiful and sad, like the song) with an edge of Sigur Ros-inspired drumming. Play these two on a hungover Sunday morning and they're brilliant, just skip past the first nine rockers until after the Bloody Marys have settled.

ArtCon 2006

Art Conspiracy Dec 1&2 2006. Greatness. More later.

update: I'm participating. The art will be created on 11/30, and the show will be on 12/1.

Friday, September 08, 2006

The blog begins

Etheriousity begins as my personal blog about the people whom I know. It's a showcase for who they are and what we all are doing here. There is no meaning or "meta" here, it's more a random collection of souls bumping into each other, trying to do the least amount of damage possible. Even that poetic sentence is not mine.

I have friends who are brilliant, friends who are quite outspoken, and friends who are beautiful. My mother and I often have discussions about the meaning and connotation of the word "friend"; she believes it should only be used for life-long pals. I, however, come from a more transient era, and will extend it to mean "people with whom I wish to remain or become life-long pals." If you are of my mothers' ilk, please think "acquaintance" whenever I write "friend" - it would make her much more comfortable with us both.

Etheriousity is a made-up word, but it should be real. It adequately describes our transience. We move through each other's "realities" (another borrowed word), and peripherally impact thought and action in unexpected ways. I live as I wish, a rare priviledge, but choose to live as an example. Not only is that quite arrogant, but it also implies a spiritualism I generally don't achieve.

I am a photographer, occassionally a writer (though I haven't done enough of that lately), and was once a scientist. Yeah, I'm not gonna link that. You'll have to take my word for it. I love my local music scene, so this blog is mostly about the music and arts in Texas. Or rather, indie rock and photography in Dallas. I barely know any html, so if you are more technically savvy, please give me a snippet to learn how to do things. I learn quite well in snippets. I'm quite opposed to manuals. This is an interactive blog. If you want it to do other things, you'll need to teach me. I learn quickly.

Posts prior to 09.08.2006 are republished from various sources such as and Venues Magazine, and have been written by me. All photos are mine, unless otherwise credited.

Please comment. Otherwise, I'd have spent my time writing a book, instead of speaking into the ether. And, welcome. I hope we meet in the concrete outside one day.

photo by Hal Samples... voted "Best Soul Glow" by the Dallas Observer 2006. You can see why.