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Monthly Archives: June 2009

Two more remixes from the guy who made the rap chop remix below”

Oh, and R.I.P Billy Mays. Go buy a zorbee to soak up the oxy clean you used to clean up the stain in your carpet when you dropped a bottle of orange glo.

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Billy Mays opened the newspaper and noticed 3 people (Ed McMahon, Farrah Fawcett, Michael Jackson) had already died this week. It was then when he said his last words: “But wait! There’s more!”

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I’m in the car on the way home from Bonnaroo.  My legs are shot, my back aches from sleeping in the car the last 3 nights and the steady hum in my ears is another step towards a hearing aid, but I couldn’t be happier.   I decided to post while I still have that warm and fuzzy post-amazing-concert-feeling.  Do you know the feeling?  It’s a bit like runners-high or that overwhelming happy feeling you get after having the time of your life.  Bonnaroo could be a yearly tradition for me.   I had a chance to see some incredible bands that I had heard of and a few that I hadn’t.  Bonnaroo was stacked with artists who would sell-out at least medium size venues (think the murat for those in indy), but who I could see back-to-back across a four day festival.  I’m really a hack when it comes to this music reviewing thing, but I did make a few observations over the course of the festival.

– Festivals are great for getting up close and personal with artists you otherwise wouldn’t be able to.  We did what we had to do to move up for our favorite artists and were privy to some excellent pasive agressive commentary (OK, oh, huh, yeah, so you’re just going to stand there the whole show? You’re just going to stand. right. there.? Yeah?  Really? Ughhh). We saw The Beastie Boys, The Decemberists, Phish, Of Montreal, Nine Inch Nails and the Yeah Yeah Yeahs within the first 10 rows or so.

– Nearly all of the comedians I heard and many of the artists failed to grasp two things:  1) most of the people at the show are not from Tennessee and thus, the normal, “hello Tennessee!” or even, in the Springsteen’s case, “hello Nashville!” should be Bonnarooooo! or Hello Bonnarooooo! and if you are going to say it, at least know that we’re in Manchester and not Nashville.  Maybe next time Springsteen will pay attention to avoid making another conversation mistake. 2) Bonnaroo is an event and not a person or a thing.  Thus, statements like “It’s great to be at The Bonnaroo” are amateur.  Damn it Boss, get your shit together.

– Bonnaroo is a dirty, smelly place with an impressive number of shit trucks cleaning the port-o-potties. Ohhh, and watch out for shit castles.  Somehow, the crowd seems to embrace the filth and has an amazing time anyways.

– My top three shows were The Decemberists, the Yeah Yeah Yeahs and Nine Inch Nails.  Honorable mentions go to The Beastie Boys, Neko Case, Phish, Katzenjammer, Rodrigo y Gabriella, Jenny Lewis and Paul Oakenfold.

– The biggest let-downs for me were MGMT, Bruce Springsteen, Of Montreal and Jeneane Garaffalo (SP?…I almost walked out of her comedy show.  She was just horrible.  For the record, we didn’t know she was going to perform).

– Top new artists (to me at least) were Katzenjammer, Crystal Castles and Rodrigo y Gabriella.

– Karen O of the Yeah Yeah Yeahs looks like she is having the time of her life when she’s on stage and her enthusiasm is definitely infectious.  The Yeah Yeah Yeahs show on Friday afternoon was the first that really blew me away.

– NIN/Reznor came out right on time (fairly rare for much of the acts) for a 1-3:30am set and really worked his ass off to put on an incredible show.  Especially considering he was playing to a crowd that was filled with casual and non-NIN fans as well as a relative smattering of his usual dedicated fanbase.  The visuals provided by Reznor’s frenetic playing and the amazing lighting system was incredible and the frenzy he instilled in front of the crowd was infectious.   The front section I was in was going absolutely nuts.  He announced at one point that this was his last show in the U.S. ever.

– The Decemberists played “The Hazards of Love” cover to cover and ended with a fun cover of “Crazy On You” sung by the artists playing the queen and the heroine in the Hazards story: Shara Worden and Beck Stark (respectively).  This was hands-down my favorite show of the festival.  Worden was just incredible as the queen.  She has an awesome voice with awesome power and her on-stage acting, charging up to the mic and violently thrusting her fists and body towards the crowd perfectly matched her role in the Queen’s rebuke.  You could tell the band has practiced their live show ad nauseum as the instrument changes between the songs were seamless and everybody knew their place.  They seemed to enjoy the performance as much as the crowd.

Here’s Crazy on You from Saturday:

– Neko Case’ set wasn’t quite what I expected given that it didn’t include Hold on, Hold on, Star Witness and Favorite, but I was very happy to hear If You Knew and Deep Red Bells.  It was amazing to finally see her live. Triumph the Comic Dog was floating around the festival and did a comedy show in the comedy tent.  After some banter, Neko and Triumph did Swing Low Sweet Chariot as a duet.  I’m amazed Triumph has such staying power.  He still sounds fresh.   Neko’s backup singer, however, was incredibly annoying yesterday.    I love Neko Case and I want to hear her talk, but the backup singer (I forgot her name, but she talks a fair amount in some of Neko’s other live recordings)  talks way too much.  It got to the point where she was cutting Neko off and not letting her get in a word edgewise.  It was annoying and distracting.   If yesterday night wasn’t an abberation, then Neko should really do something about it.

– Katzenjammer, an all-female Dutch rockabilly band, was my favorite new band of the weekend.  David Byrne (of Talking Heads fame) was given the opportunity to stack a stage with any set of performers he wanted and this Norwegian foursome was one of his choices.  Their music makes me so incredibly happy.   I could be a groupie.  Here’s my favorite Katzenjammer song on youtube:

I want to marry all of them, but especially the redheaded lady on the far left in yellow.  She started and ended the show on the sonic stage playing the giant smiling bass and played a bit of keyboard and contributed her vocals as well.   They kept switching instruments throughout the show and so I don’t really know who really plays what (talk about versatility)!  Anyways, I’m in love.  The pic:

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Bonnarooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo!

There are loads of Billy Mays and Vince (the sham-wow/slap-chop guy) remixes on youtube, but this slap chop remix spectacular: