Archive for July, 2009

I Don’t Love You But I Always Will

July 26, 2009

My good friend Schafe flew in for the weekend to visit Nashville for the first time and, as expected, our reunion was memorable.  The weekend’s success can largely be attributed to Adam’s desire to experience live music in the Music City. Always looking to satisfy his concert desires,  I decided to take him to a show at the Mercy Lounge showcasing three native Nashvillests:  Trent Dabbs, Sarah Siskind, and The Civil Wars.

With Trent being the mastermind behind the fantastic Ten out of Tenn movement and Sarah garnering much blog attention from Bon Iver’s love for “Lovin’s For Fools”, I figured the evening and venue provided perfect representation for the local scene.

Without question, the opening duo stole the night though. The Civil Wars are a new collaboration between the adorable Joy Williams and fantastic John Paul White. Imagine an American version of The Swell Season, but arguably better. As a Glen Hansard fanatic, I hope this hefty comparison speaks volumes.

Joy and John’s harmonies were literally jawdropping, epitomizing the “sum is greater than its parts” adage. Case in point, take their live performance of “Poison & Wine” from Atlanta:

The duo was built for the stage, and fortunately, both seem aware of their biggest strength together. A side project of sorts, their only available offering is an incredible live show downloadable for free on their myspace page. The band enthusiastically promoted the pristinely mixed live album to last night’s crowd, excitedly announcing the recent surpassing of 10,000 downloads while requesting supporters to continue spreading the word.

Please take a listen:  the album’s clarity could easily pass as an actual release in stores and I promise it won’t disappoint.  In search for criticism, the only elements missing from Live at Eddie’s Attic are the corresponding visual element exhibiting the duo’s charismatic stage presence and their standout take on Michael Jackson’s “Billie Jean” from last night’s show.

If you like what you hear, pass along the link and be sure to support Joy in the upcoming third installment of the Ten Out of Tenn tour.

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Michael & Michael Do Have Issues

July 25, 2009

In case you missed it, Michael & Michael Have Issues premiered July 15th on Comedy Central.  Given my recent travels, I was unable to catch either of the first two shows live, but I’ve caught up to speed courtesy of the worldwide web.

To preface, I’ve loved Showalter and Black for quite some time. The State and Stella were brilliant.  Wet Hot American Summer and The Baxter are personal favorites.  I’ve seen both comedians perform stand-up live. Plus, I’ve always enjoyed Black’s I Love the 80’s commentary and Showalter’s mock interview webisodes:

Vodpod videos no longer available.

That being said, I have issues with how disappointing Michael & Michael Have Issues has been after the first two weeks. I’m fairly confident the duo will be adding yet another cancelled series to their repertoire shortly. It pains me to see such talent go to waste. The absurdist delivery that garnered a cult following is now merely a shell of their earlier work, which can be most likely attributed to the show’s desire to appeal to a broader mainstream audience.

I waited patiently, desperately wanting to laugh; unfortunately thus far, I’ve only done so during the “Quiet Weatherman” sketch:

Vodpod videos no longer available.

For the time being, Michael & Michael airs on Wednesday nights at 10:30 pm ET, but I’d much rather be watching a show in the vein of The Michael Showalter Showalter. I hope the network eventually allows the pair to go full-fledged with their ludicrous style before it’s too late.

It All Happened During Our Hiatus

July 23, 2009

As soon as June 18th arrived, I’ve taken full advantage of my significantly elevated availability to enjoy family and friends in internet-deprived locations.  After a seemingly endless string of lovely activities involving road trips, MLB games, freedom walks, island tours, pay tolls, gasoline scares, weddings, camp outs, reunions, lake houses, 4 on 4, card games, 4 square battles, bridge jumps, plane flights, firefly nights, deep dish pizzas, music festivals, and softball tournaments, I’m finally no longer M.I.A.

ABBREVIATED TRAVEL ITINERARY:

June 18th: Nashville to Knoxville drive (180 miles)
June 18th-19th: Knoxville to Cambridge road trip (920 miles)
June 23rd-24th: Cambridge to Nashville road trip (1,100 miles)
June 30th: One-way flight to Chicago/DeKalb (1.5 hour flight)
July 2nd: DeKalb to Cleveland road trip (420 miles)
July 3rd: Cleveland to St. Mary’s Reunion caravan (200 miles)
July 5th: St. Mary’s to Camden Lake House road trip (665 miles)
July 7th: Camden to Charlotte interview round trip (120 miles)
July 13th: Camden to Knoxville road trip (300 miles)
July 15th: Knoxville to Nashville return (180 miles)
July 16th: Nashville to Chicago flight (1.5 hour flight)
July 20th: Chicago to Nashville flight (1.5 hour flight)
July 20th: Nashville to Chattanooga drive (140 miles)
July 23rd: Chattanooga to Nashville return (140 miles)

ESTIMATED DISTANCE: 6,000 Miles
ESTIMATED TRAVEL TIME: A Crap Load

I’ve covered a great deal of territory over the past month of “forced” vacation.  Each pit stop brought great memories; but in an attempt to get back into the swing of blog updates, I’ll simply highlight the most noteworthy accomplishments from my latest weekend visit to Chicago with Christina:

  1. Viewing limited released (500) Days of Summer starring personal favorites Joseph G.L. and Zooey D.
  2. Geese chasing (and consequential avoiding) on NIU’s campus
  3. Attempting to attack a quart-sized blizzard at Ollies
  4. Experiencing Frightened Rabbit live for the first time at Pitchfork (my 2nd Mew set was also a great success)
  5. Purchasing Nebraska on vinyl after three years of casual searching in all appropriate local music outlets

Now that I’ve successfully compensated for the posting deficit over the past few weeks, I’ll be focusing my efforts on a much more important and stress-inducing goal.  Here goes nothing…