The infrequently-updated site blog, featuring a range of content including show reviews, musical musings and off-color ramblings on other varied topics.
Acid Haus by United Cellars
Australian Design Centre
February 16, 2017
Acid house is probably the simplest and gentlest subgenre of house music and was developed around the mid-1980s by DJs from Chicago. Primarily by the deep bass lines and "squelching" sounds of the Roland TB-303 electronic synthesizer-sequencer
Acid house's minimalist production aesthetic combined house music's ubiquitous programmed 4/4 beat with the electronic ‘squelch' sound produced by the Roland TB-303 electronic synthesizer-sequencer by constantly modulating its frequency and resonance controls to create 'movement' in otherwise simple bass patterns.
It is fabled that the etymology of “Acid” House can be traced back to the fact that it was first used in nightclubs where the use of psychedelic clubs were reportedly used and a celebratory reference to psychedelic drugs in general, with it bearing connotations the fragmentation of experience and dislocation of meaning due to the unstructuring effects on thought patterns, which psycho-active drugs can bring about.
The wines the sturdy, late-ripening white grape Riesling, at times referred to as the “king of grapes” and one of the most aromatic wine varieties in the world, are based on, is very high in acid often not seldomly likened to fruit juice, with primary fruit aromas being nectarine, apricot, honey-crisp apple and pear, as well as interesting nuances ranging from honeycomb to chemical aromas, e.g. rubber and diesel fuel.
It is these complex, acidic flavours and the intoxicating effect the consumption can have, that inspired United Cellars to host a celebratory tribute to the psychedelic qualities of their favourite Rieslings:
Acid Haus, a smart pun on the genre-defining label with a nod to the inofficial homeland of Riesling, Germany.
Established in 2004, United Cellars has moved beyond the traditional wine club, bypassing the middlemen, to work directly with leading wineries across Australia and around the world to arrange educational tasting events and wine experiences on a regular basis, which serve as a casual forum for attendants to tap into the knowledge of sommeliers and United Cellar’s bespoke wine advisory service called "Cellar Angels".
With the Australian Design Centre serving as the launch pad, which is dedicated to embracing the highest degree of craftsmanship and the committed to advance contemporary design practices, United Cellars took us on a voyage to taste local Australian, varieties of New Zealand via Austria and the steep slopes of Germany’s Rhine and Mosel.
Riesling also performs well in neighboring Austria and Alsace. In Alsace, contemporary producers are building richer, fuller style wines through later harvesting, longer fermentations and extended time on lees. Textured examples were the Domaine Barmès Buecher Riesling Hengst Grand Cru, of which the complex 2007 and 2010 varieties were available mastering the tightrope walk between a smidgeon of residual sweetness and electric acidity, finishing dry. Delish.
Interestingly, there is more Riesling planted in Australia than in France. Much of it was cultivated by Silesian settlers to South Australia. These Rieslings retain acidity due to cool night-time temperatures, while exhibiting aromas of mainly lime and citrus marmalade; with age and the nights favourite and recommendation from your humble narrator was Brackenwood – Adelaide Hills, SA (bio dynamic), with its Riesling 2015 and Riesling Botrytis 2014 varieties, textural and mouthfilling wines with a lovely cushioning of fruits.
The schist soils of Central Otago convinced with Lake Wanaka’s bio dynamic Riesling Jeunesse 2015 and Riesling Mature Vines 2013 varieties, which provided a smooth, lip smacking acidic transition to the top examples for Germanic Rieslings, a category in which Dr. Loosen’s WS Kabinett 2015 with its steeling crunchy acidity and the more affordable, aromatic 2014 Wittmann Hugel 100 with its floral top notes and hint of ripe tropical fruits managed to convince.
The evening which had a total of 40 Rieslings on offer was accompanied by freshly shucked oysters from the Ralston brothers, cheeses from Simon Johnson and a soundtrack that was much more agreeable than the emissions of the Acid House movement of the late 1980s.
Photos by KAVV
International Towers, Barangaroo
February 15, 2017
TEDxSydneySalons are the smaller, smart relatives of the TedX events offering intimate, evening events combining talks, films and music. Designed to spark discussion and debate, TEDxSydneySalons are a great forum to exchange ideas and kickstart collaborations.
The February 2017 incarnation investigated the theme of technology and took place in Tower Two, International Towers, in Sydney’s newest suburb, Barangaroo, which is heralded as a nexus of innovation in design, engineering, and sustainability.
The lineup included an interview with 2016 TEDxSydney speaker Dr.Jordan Nguyen, a visionary writer, and engineer. Jordan is a Vietnamese-Australian biomedical engineer and inventor whose achievements include creating a mind-controlled wheelchair, and whose technological innovations are targeted at improving the lives of those living with physical disabilities. He is a keynote speaker and futurist, with strong views on using technology for maximum positive global impact. His work has gained considerable media attention across Australia, featuring on ABC's Catalyst and Channel TEN's The Project.
Nguyen shared his latest technological learning and personal insights into the use of innovative, intelligent and assistive technology to improve lives, particularly for those with physical disabilities, as well as the groundbreaking opportunities in work in STEM, infused with his warmth which brings a human aspect to the understanding of science and engineering.
Nguyen has worked closely with the Cerebral Palsy Alliance and with a range of individuals with Cerebral Palsy, which created the transition to Jessica Irwin, a young woman who was born with a high level of cerebral palsy and with an equally high level of self-determination and raw talent, who joined Nguyen to speak about the role of technology in her creative life: She's a photographer and although she loves snapping pictures of musicians, her dream has been to perform with them. Now, thanks to an instrument newly, which can be played with her eyes and developed by Jordan Nguyen, this has become a reality, enabling her to fulfill her dream of playing music onstage with other musicians, culminating in a performance at Sydney’s Opera House. The software allows a person to control the computer with their eyes and basically plays her music device that was custom-made with Jessica.
Joining Jess Irwin on stage were the soloist and chamber musician, Thomas Rann, and violist James Wannan from the Australia Piano Quartet as well as Jack Symonds, a composer, conductor and accompanist, and Artistic Director of Sydney Chamber Opera.
In addition, we heard from John Goh, an inspiring school principal from Merrylands in South Western Sydney whose innovative practices using disruptive technologies are transcending traditional school learning. When Goh noticed children dozing off in afternoon classes, he decided to trial starting the school day earlier. It was a radical idea and out of step with the state's centralised public school system but Goh believed it to be the perfect solution for Merrylands East Public School. Now his school community is considering a plan for lessons to be held from 8am to 1.15pm before students work at a homework centre until 3pm. He believes schools should be innovative, flexible and continually give back to the local community. Six years ago, the school decided to install 68 solar power panels - saving thousands on its electricity bill. About 10% of his students are former refugees and the vast majority of students learn English for the first time when they start school. Goh endeavours to enable all of his students to become literate in information and communications technology and class blogs, electronically pen-paling and conversing via email and virtual chat rooms, video conferencing and working on video productions.
Swift change of topic: Alice Gorma is an internationally recognised leader in the emerging field of space archaeology and exploration. She introduced us to the concept of “lunar mining” and asked us to consider how it will affect the way we feel about the Moon.
Singer, multi-instrumentalist and harpist, Jake Meadows rounded off the proceedings with a modern marriage of not one but three harps in all their glory and electronics, which transitioned into post-event sunset drinks and discussions, where TEDx community members could try out a DJ mash up box: A touch screen onto which cubes with instruments / vocals could be placed and moved to create unique sounds and thereby a playful DJ experience of another kind.
Photos by KAVV
Xiuhtezcatl Martinez: Why I Sued the U.S. Government
February 12, 2017
In October 2000, Zack de la Rocha walked out of Rage Against The Machine.
I am not implying that there is any connection, but there is a gentleman and environmental activist that goes by the name of Xiuhtezcatl (“Shu-tez-caht”) Martinez, who was born in the same year and has already grown to be what would be a formidable step in for the thirty year older American musician, poet, rapper, and activist should a need ever arise: A sixteen year old trilingual Indigenous hip-hop artist, who has inspired youth, politicians and audiences across six continents with his Earth Guardians activism movement.
With his appearance before the UN Earth Summit in 2015 being only the most publicized tip of the iceberg of his mission, the sense of caretaking of the planet instilled into his DNA by his heritage of being raised as part of the Aztec Mashika people thrust him into action and motivated his work with Our Children’s Trust and other youth representative to file lawsuits in all fifty US states to take their state and federal governments to court for a lack of action on climate change. The case rests on the legal argument that climate change is so catastrophic to their future that it threatens their fundamental right to life and liberty.
It raised awareness and garnered support for his claim that there are no true elected world leaders and that the responsibility lies with the people.
In person, Xiuhtezcatl has a refreshingly open, eloquent, calm and positive presence and is prepared to find a mid-ground with people who have difficulties coming to terms with the realities of climate change and its dire implications.
Given his impressive achievements to date and the bigger picture ideas he pursues, e.g. redirecting subsidies for fossil fuel companies into renewables like solar, wind and hydro, his actions exemplify that using one’s voice yields tangible outcomes and makes a difference, which is the basis for empowering young people to be part of something bigger than themselves.
Photos by KAVV
A Strategic Plan
Griffin Theatre Company
Until March 11, 2017
Griffin Theatre Company is an Australian theatre specialising in new writing, based in Sydney. It is the resident theatre company at the SBW Stables Theatre in Kings Cross and the only professional theatre company in Sydney entirely dedicated to the development and production of new Australian writing for the stage.
During its inception, Griffin Theatre became more and more aware of the amount of Australian writing talent available and eventually the decision was made to adopt an all-Australian policy.
With small grants from New South Wales and Commonwealth funding bodies, the Company kicked off in 1982.
Fast forward almost four decades, with funding to the arts sector facing devastating cuts, subsequently causing Griffin Theatre’s scaling down of 2017s program, and voilà, the fragile arts sector is sitting on a precipice fraught with the possibility of collapse with Australia seemingly way behind other countries in both acknowledging and promoting arts industries as well as their subsequent influences on education, cultural capital, global relevance and a much simpler but less measurable statistic – public stability, health and happiness.
Set in a not-for-profit organization run by hobbyists, Ross Mueller’s satirical play A Strategic Plan is inspired by the dichotomy between the free spirited, passionate, creative realm of the art world fueled by goodwill of enthusiasts versus the administrative, soulless professional bureaucracy of pen pushers that treat it as a disposable commodity and the oxymoron of the latter with their adherence to rigid guidelines stymieing in its infancy what they are supposed to nurture.
A scenario all too familiar to anyone who has ever ventured into the arts sector and struggled with maintaining artistic integrity against monetary exploitation, based on individuals with competing agendas, confronted with the often poignant, foolishness that plagues the overregulated, form-filling administrative 9-to-5 world, with its clichéd parlance.
Set as a painfully well-observed satire against this office life, it comes with the territory that the characters are somewhat familiar and fit in with well-worn stereotypes, which are at times coloured with a broad brush at the expense of complexity, yet never The Office-esque cartoonish.
It is a wordy piece, with overlapping text and heavy, at times overly ambitious and high-volume dialogue.
Director Chris Mead manages to negotiate the transitions and journey between five different timeframes between past and present, which are blending into another, by utilizing music and lighting.
It appears as if the play has gone through quite a bit of restructuring to refine the effect and ensure comprehensibility for the audience.
The ensemble, spearheaded by Justin Smith, who manages in his role as a passion driven manager of a not-for-profit youth music venture to infuse the play with subtle notes of melancholy, is a tightly knit, well-oiled unit with great timing and engaging conversational rhythm based on clash of personalities. Nuances that are amplified by Matt Day’s sleazy portrayal of the board chair, Briallen Clarke’s radiating yet subtle presence and Emele Ugavule’s well measured delivery.
A Strategic Plan is a dark comedy, however, it is not merely a funny play as it also genuinely highlights the opposition and daily struggles one has to put up with once you have decided to take the road less traveled and live a life of your own.
Connect with Everything
Museum of Contemporary Art
Until 05 March, 2017
As the names suggests, The Museum of Contemporary Art Australia (abbreviated MCA), located in Sydney, is solely dedicated to exhibiting, interpreting and collecting contemporary art, both from across Australia and around the world. It is situated on prime real estate facing Sydney harbour vis-à-vis from the reflections of the iconic concrete shells of the Opera House and is housed in the art deco-style former Maritime Services Board Building on the Western edge of Circular Quay.
The museum was opened in 1991 as the Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney, and from 2010 underwent an A$58 million expansion, which culminated in combining the old sandstone facade with a new modern, non-fuss structure. Housing three new galleries on multiple levels along with a roof top café with a sculptural terrace, allowing visitors full advantage of the view, the use of an education centre cum lecture theatre and entry via a substantial plaza and broad staircase, the inner version of which provides cohesion by allowing light to flood in, creating a grand sense of arrival.
MCA’s collection contains over 4,000 works by Australian artists that have been acquired since 1989 and spans a wide array of art forms with strong holdings in painting, photography, sculpture, works on paper and moving image, as well as significant representation of works by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander artists.
Miyajima’s exhibition is part of Sydney’s International Art Series, which previously welcomed Anish Kapoor, Yoko Ono, Chuck Close and most recently Grayson Perry on terra australis.
Connect with Everything is Tatsuo Miyajima’s biggest exhibition in Australasia to date and represents something of a survey of his immersive and technology driven oeuvre over his four decades spanning career. The manifestation of his art with the theme of connectedness is informed by three core interwoven principles that pervade his installations: Everything is in a state of flux; everything is related to everything else and everything is ultimately part of an eternal cycle.
The whole exhibition appears as a profound meditation on the shape of time and the cycle of reincarnation within the confines of our existence. A mediation that is based on often complex light emitting diodes installations, whose universal accessibility and endlessly looped countdowns, which in Miyajima’s eyes resemble the Buddhist doctrine of impermanence, are diametrically opposed to the Western thought of the linearity of time. The importance of the now, a reminder that our time on this earthround is finite and the fact that time is everyone’s master.
Throughout the exhibition, this axiom is accentuated by the use of a certain palette of colours, most prominently blue hinting at the sky, the universe, infinity; with red and green evoking associations with fire and nature; white representing, well, enWHITEnment.
The centerpiece of the exhibition is Mega Death, which was commissioned for the 1999 Venice Biennale: A vast chamber with three walls comprised of 3,000 twinkling blue LED digital counters, each counting down from nine to one, with zero signifying the time of death before life starts over again, and programmed to interact with each other at varying speeds, giving chance a significant role and at certain intervals blacking out.
A metaphor for the twentieth century, the century of death on an industrial scale resulting from wars, the holocaust, natural catastrophes, terrorism and specifically the tragedies Japan had to endure, i.e. from the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki.
From a cyclical angle also a metaphor for humanity’s capacity to heal, recover and begin anew.
Another major installation is Arrow of Time (2016), a term used in quantum physics representing time’s irreversibility. Arrow of Time is designed to make people gaze at the space above them to watch several hundred ceiling-mounted LEDs and contemplate the passing of time, the irretrievable nature of each moment, mortality, the magneticism of death and what this means to each person individually.
Sea of Time is a 20 meter long waterway installation, which was first and originally conceived under participation of the townspeople of Naoshima Island, the home of Benesse House, which shall soon be shed light on in an upcoming feature, serving as an opportunity to interject modern art into the lives of the islanders and the local Japanese area.
Time Train to the Holocaust was originally created by Miyajima as an installation for the German town of Recklinghausen, a centre for coal production in Germany: A toy train hauling small luminous blue counter gadgets around seven tons of coal, another installation with bright red LED counters interspersing the coals, signifying the finite capacity of our natural resources.
While playful at first glance, the train alludes to the sinister German efficiency in one of the darkest chapters of humanity: The very same mode of transport used for transporting coals or to get passengers in a timely manner form A to B, was run by the Deutsche Reichsbahn for the purpose of forcible deportation of the Jews as well as other victims of the Holocaust to the concentration, forced labour and extermination camps – mass transportation as an enabler for evil, as modern historians suggest, without which the scale of the final solution would not have been possible.
At face value, Connect with Everything is about time and technology. A closer examination reveals that this is just a mere vehicle to resonate with the audience on a far more personal and humanist level: Personal as Miyajima extends the dialogue between art and audience and presents time as something that only through human interaction becomes a visual manifestation, with unpredictability being a metaphor for life itself.
Musings that the pop-up Cherry Blossom Bar at the MCA provides an ideal backdrop for, with the food menu paying homage to the cuisine of Miyajima’s home country and sake and Japanese whiskey based cocktail providing inspiration.
Photos by KAVV
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“We were standing in the middle of the square. There were snipers on the roof. Riot cops all around. People had already been killed. And she turned to me and ... read more
The So So Glos, Desaparecidos Paradise Rock Club Boston, MA August 4, 2015 I went for Desaparecidos - Conor Oberst’s (of Bright Eyes fame) hardcore band - who put out ... read more
Radioactivity, Birthday Suits, Butcher’s Union Triple Rock Social Club Minneapolis, MN July 22, 2015 It’s nice to live in a city where some great out of town bands have ... read more
Ex Hex, Tweens, Pink Mink Triple Rock Social Club Minneapolis, MN July 20, 2015 I go to a lot of shows. Sometimes it’s nice to be surprised, and that’s what ... read more
Tex Perkins and the Dark Horses Oxford Art Factory Sydney, AUS July 19, 2015 Pizzazz. Omph. Charisma. If your music depends entirely on that, the dependency is too great. ... read more
Picture this: You’re looking at the front of a stage. Above you a man in a suit made entirely of muscles walks on in a shroud of fog. From far ... read more
Babes in Toyland Rock the Garden Minneapolis, MN June 21, 2015 It’s difficult for me to write about Babes in Toyland without sounding at least a little bit gushy. Like ... read more
Belle and Sebastian Rock the Garden Minneapolis, MN June 20th, 2015 As a hot and humid day began its turn towards much needed cooler temperatures, Scotland’s baroque pop sweethearts ... read more
Shonen Knife, CJ Ramone, L’Assassins Amsterdam Bar & Hall St. Paul, MN June 10, 2015 Amsterdam is a venue that’s not new by any means, but still feels to ... read more
White Lung 7th St. Entry Minneapolis, MN June 11, 2015 Abandoning my beloved NBA Finals, I bounced somewhere during the third quarter and rushed downtown to catch White Lung. Upon ... read more
Boris Newtown Social Club Sydney, AUS May 29, 2015 And then there was Boris. The Japanese unikum named after a Melvins song. Cue labels that span the spectrum ... read more
Art is Masturbation. It’s a sensational, attention-grabbing statement for sure and one that presents an idea that many artists and people who create have probably toyed with at one point ... read more
Fuckface Unstoppable Manning Bar Sydney, AUS May 7, 2015 It’s about 6 years ago and I am sitting on the balcony of a stilted house right by Cambodia’s Tonlé ... read more
Mastodon Big Top Luna Park Sydney, AUS March 28, 2015 The red volcanic soil in the surrounding region of the city of Tequila is particularly well suited to the ... read more
Steel Panther, Slash (feat. Myles Kennedy and the Conspirators) Hordern Pavilion Sydney, AUS February 24, 2015 Satire is a lesson, parody is a game: Steel Panther are seasoned performers ... read more
Now that was a band that I did not really think I would hear from again. Named after the description of the Elder God, Azathoth, in H.P. Lovecraft’s cosmos, this ... read more
Bombay Sweets, Pink Mink, Swami John & The Blind Shake Turf Club St. Paul, MN February 19, 2015 No review, see photo gallery below. read more
Shonen Knife @ The Factory Theatre Sydney, AUS January 24, 2015 Grin-inducing Japanese energetic, upbeat and catchy all-girl pop punk entertainment with the ingredients of a classic rock show: Shonen Knife ... read more
How does one go to a show of a band that has been around consistently for longer that you have been alive and not have expectations? This along with possible ... read more
Tex Perkins and the Dark Horses @ The Enmore Theatre Sydney, AUS November 23, 2014 The Newtown area was part of the land of the Cadigal band of the Eora people, who ranged across ... read more
The Dwarves @ The Bald Faced Stag Hotel Sydney, AUS October 8, 2015 Parramatta Road is the east-west artery of metropolitan Sydney. On its 23 kilometers long strip, the road is ... read more
While it may be a bit grandiose to title a tour "Black Metal Warfare" or really any kind of warfare after witnessing a show on the tour in question it ... read more
It seems as though we are in a period of time where we read of a famous musician dying almost daily, this tour was supposed to have Ian McLagan in ... read more
Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds State Theatre Sydney, AUS December 11, 2014 "All that has dark sounds has duende, that mysterious power that everyone feels but no philosopher ... read more
Run The Jewels, Ratking The Fine Line Music Café Minneapolis, MN November 20, 2014 Earlier this week I attended an artist’s talk/writer’s workshop-type thing here in Minneapolis. Kevin Bowe, who’s ... read more
The Gaslight Anthem, Against Me!, Cory Brannan First Avenue Minneapolis, MN October 15, 2014 It had been many a year since I’d seen Against Me! and I hadn’t seen Gaslight ... read more
The Pixies, Royal Blood State Theatre Minneapolis, MN October 11, 2014 There’s a lot that can be said about The Pixies and their 2014 tour—well, about any tour of ... read more
Lethbridge is a suburb of sorts to Calgary to give you, the reader an idea of the towns size. Usually the Enmax (where this show took place) is host to ... read more
Unless you've been living under a rock, you know Arcade Fire are currently shaking up North America with an enchanting spectacle of a tour. I caught the tour in Los ... read more
Too Many Rappers: July 2014 7/18/14 - Minneapolis, MN Commuting earlier than usual this morning means it’s nice and cool. I ride by a kid who’s wearing an old 3rd ... read more
Guided By Voices, Crystal Stilts Irving Plaza New York, NY July 11, 2014 Photo courtesy of Gerald McBoing-Boing See Guided By Voices before you die. ... read more
Agalloch, Jex Thoth Irving Plaza New York, NY June 30, 2014 Agalloch were one of the first metal bands to combine black/doom’s monsoon of carnage with ambient, ... read more
Eyehategod, Ringworm, Enabler, Shitkill Club Europa Brooklyn, New York June 7, 2014 This past weekend, the mega-festival Governors Ball hit hard in NYC. People from all ... read more
Boston Calling Music Festival 2014 City Hall Plaza in Boston, MA May 23-25 2014 (All concert photos courtesy of Mike Diskin) Over Memorial Day weekend, I experienced the ... read more
As my friend David and I were being hurled around the mosh pit at the Terminal 5 show of legendary post-rock ensemble Mogwai, I thought back to how earlier ... read more
Chuck Ragan, White Buffalo, Jonny Two BagsTriple Rock Social ClubMinneapolis, MNApril 15, 2014 It had been many a year since I’d seen Chuck Ragan perform, and that was with his ... read more
Written by Eli ZegerPhotos by Hadar Sagi From Indian Lakes From Indian Lakes is a group of five pretty boys who make poppy emo music, but with post-rock riffs ... read more
Russian Circles, KEN Mode, Inter Arma at Underground Arts, Philadelphia, 2/19/14 Last week, Chicago's Russian Circles touched down in Philadelphia as a part of their current tour with Ontario's KEN ... read more
Too Many Rappers: Fall Roundup The Minnehaha Creek is just one of the many places I do my thinking. I mean, as a human being with a fully functional brain, ... read more
HIM, Caspian Southampton GuildhallSouthampton, Hampshire, UKOctober 28, 2013 It has been three years since HIM last played on the shores of the UK, with a lot of uncertainty whether they ... read more
Beacons Festival 2013 North Yorkshire August 16-18, 2013 Beacons Festival is a pretty novel addition to the British concert scene. Taking place in Skipton (Lancs > Yorks) away from the ... read more
Elliott Smith at his last-ever NYC show, January 29th 2003. He killed himself that October.Photo: Alexis I have this friend, let's call her L. We "met" on a music messageboard ... read more
October 12, 2013 Calgary, Alberta @ THE GOLDEN AGE CLUB After a few hiccups in the booking process (venue issues, etc.) the day finally came for Terror to come back ... read more
A couple weeks ago, I went on a trip to the middle of the country to see my favorite band, AFI, play shows up and down the midwest. Some of ... read more
A couple weeks ago, I went on a trip to the middle of the country to see my favorite band, AFI, play shows up and down the midwest. Some ... read more
FLAG, T.S.O.L., Cerbral Ballzy, Off WithTheir Heads First Avenue Minneapolis, MN September 13, 2013 After spending a few hours in a sports bar down the street, where my compadres and ... read more
Caïna, Hordes, Barshasketh The Unicorn London, UK September 6 2013 We've been talking a lot about the rebirth of Caïna of late and we'll soon have a review of the new ... read more
It's that time once again! The fabled Progressive Music Awards are tomorrow night, and I've spent the last few weeks getting myself familiar with the best of the best in ... read more
Holy crap, has this summer been hot or what? Like, hot as in temperature hot. Like, literally hot. Which might be confusing now that Merriam-Webster and Oxford dictionaries as well ... read more
The NINES Festival Devens, MA I must admit I was anxious to attend this festival when I heard the lineup featured none other than Shuggie Otis. I have had ... read more
It's a tray in a hotel room, fairly unremarkable when put back to basics. The tray is littered with cigarettes, beer bottles, a can of coke, a crumpled McDonald's ... read more
Die Kruezen, Hepa/Titus, Mudhoney, Gay Witch Abortion, Negative Approach, Honky, Melvins Grumpys Downtown Minneapolis, MN July 20, 2013 It’s a shame that Amphetamine Reptile Records quit putting out new ... read more
The Postal Service are making their rounds again in support in the Deluxe Edition re-release of their 2003 album, Give Up. Scene Point Blank had a chance to check'em out ... read more
Dave Hause @ Cabooze Plaza Social Distortion, Cheap Time, Dave HauseCabooze PlazaMinneapolis, MNJuly 2, 2013 Dave Hause is a busy guy. I swear I get an email a week here ... read more
Well here we are into the first part of May, and I'm wondering where the fuck March and April went. I apologize for dropping the F bomb on you in ... read more
Minneapolis, MN, 4/20/13 Despite being fairly worn out from the previous evening—one which had me visiting three different venues, seeing six different bands, and imbibing at least twice as many ... read more
The Men 7th St Entry Minneapolis, MN June 12, 2013 On just the third night of their North American tour, Brooklyn-based band The Men landed in Minneapolis for a packed-in ... read more
(This review contains copious spoilers: if you intend to read the novel yourself, proceed with caution. We're posting it as a blog since it's not strictly music-related, despite being written by ... read more
Tegan and Sara were appreciated by Albany, NY last month when they came to the Upstate Concert Hall, the first time they've visited since the duo released So Jealous, which ... read more
Anthrax, Exodus, High On Fire, Municipal Waste, Holy Grail First Avenue Minneapolis, MN April 4th, 2013 Continuing their recent-ish trend of performing classic albums in their entirety, Anthrax rolled into ... read more
In the days following Adam Yauch’s passing in May of last year, many of us nostalgia-stricken fans were searching for words to express how deeply saddened we were by not ... read more
February 28th, 2013 As I write this, I am overlooking the Sea of Cortez on the Baja Peninsula from the balcony of my room at a vacation resort outside of ... read more
This hip-hop train just keeps on rolling. And although I would like to think I’m fully on board, it feels more like I’m running beside it, trying to keep up, ... read more
Well, here we are, a whole month into the New Year, and as usual January was spent catching up on all the music I slept on last year. Normally the ... read more
The tiny Black Heart in Camden holds court to an evening of droned out sludge, traditional heavy doom, and more English black metal than you can shake a stick at ... read more
The Unicorn is suffering from a severe lack of air con tonight, the tension in the air made all the palpable by the insane levels of heat and the anticipation ... read more
The view that Scene Point Blank has been afforded for tonight’s performance is beautiful, and the sea of heads below on the floor is all the more astonishing seen from ... read more
Minus the Bear and Cursive have been on tour for the past few months in support of their 2012 releases. Minus the Bear put out Infinity Overhead in August, while ... read more
Murder by Death have just begun to tour for their new album, Bitter Drink, Bitter Moon, by supporting pop-punk troop, Say Anything. It's an interesting combo and Murder by Death ... read more
It's rare that you attend a show that feels like it has the weight of history riding on it, but seeing At The Drive-In play what is likely to be ... read more
Fun. are back on the road selling out shows again. This time however, they didn't just sell out one show, but 3 nights at the illustrious Wiltern Theater in Los ... read more
Murder by Death are preparing the release of their 6th studio album, Bitter Drink, Bitter Moon, while celebrating the 10-year anniversary of their first LP, Like The Exorcist, but More ... read more
Well, it's high time that progressive music got a good, high-ish-profile awards show, and now, thanks to Prog Magazine, we have one. The bad news is that it stlil shows ... read more
Japandroids 7th St. Entry Minneapolis, MN July 7, 2012 When a touring band starts their set by saying, “It feels like we’re back home, Minneapolis”, the natural instinct is to go ... read more
LeBron James is Four Titles and a Rape Allegation Away From Becoming Kobe Bryant: How the Miami Heat Winning is Bad for Basketball Now I know that we here at ... read more
Royal Headache, The Arrivals, Condominium Triple Rock Social Club Minneapolis, MN June 9, 2012 It was with some intrigue and, admittedly, mostly trepidation that I made my way to ... read more
Hot Water Music just released their new album, Exister, and recently spent a couple nights in So-Cal to warm up the new songs before they head out to Europe this ... read more
There are a few cultural constants we all come to understand depending on where we come from, and growing up in Vermont is no exception. Amongst other things, many develop ... read more
Once again, fun. are on the road and Scene Point Blank was there to catch another great show. The band's playing the clubs in support of their sophomore record, Some ... read more
I had the pleasure of attending the 5th annual Musink Fest in Costa Mesa, CA--a festival blending live music and an appreciation for tattoo art--hosted by LA Ink star, Kat ... read more
Cursive recently began touring in support of their 7th studio album, I Am Gemini. I had the privilege of catching their show in Pomona, CA where they played a great ... read more
I know we don't usually review websites here at Scene Point Blank, but we just couldn't help ourselves after our editor in chief Loren received the following request: Hi,I'm Pheiné, ... read more
The piece ended rather suddenly, almost completely without warning. The conductor held his position for a moment, then slowly brought his arms down. The theater erupted with applause as the ... read more
Saves the Day and Bayside decided to team up this Fall to deliver a thrilling show fans of either could appreciate. Joining them on the tour are I Am ... read more
The World/Inferno Friendship Society recently started their US tour supporting their new album, The Anarchy and The Ecstasy, with sci-fi-psychobilly (psy-fi?) band, The Phenomenauts. You could not ask for a ... read more
Last Thursday, The Purple Turtle in London's infamous Camden held what is likely to be the most fun headlining show I've seen this year. Cannabis Corpse, fresh off the back ... read more
Motley Crue and Poison live, Target Center, Mpls, MN, 6/24/11 The New York Dolls opened the show but I couldn’t tell you damn thing about them. The girlfriend and I literally ... read more
Read Midwest Hell Fest Wrapup-Day 1 here. Despite intermittent sleep, I wake up feeling fairly well rested. If memory serves correctly, I’m somewhere deep within the confines of enemy territory—Wisconsin. ... read more
After losing a year of my life behind the wheel, I finally arrive at my destination: Kimberly, Wisconsin. Upon walking into the hotel—and I use this term loosely—lobby, I am ... read more
After a long wait and two opening acts—the clock struck 9:30 and Fun took the stage, while the boys and girls cheered. Suddenly, the beautiful overture to “Be Calm” opens ... read more
200 bands, seemingly as many beers, and only three nights. Where do I begin my recap? My stomach is still shrunken from not eating right, and I continue to drink ... read more
Let me start off by saying that I love all three of these bands, and I have been looking forward to this show since I got confirmed to photograph it. ... read more
Portugal. the Man is a Portland, Oregon based experimental indie-rock band, fronted by native Alaskan John Gourley. If you haven’t heard the story about this up and coming group, Gourley’s ... read more
I don't know how many of you have heard of Moving Mountains. A band from Westchester, NY, they are fresh off a tour with Thursday, about to embark on a ... read more
I hit the 500 review mark last week with my Narrows review. That's a lot of reviews. Sometimes I get burnt out with all the stuff coming through, especially when ... read more
So I just got done watching the season finale of Scrubs. It was Zach Braff's final episode. His character is saying goodbye, but I think they gave it a nice ... read more
Two months ago I had high hopes for the Cleveland Browns. Now I am left with a fairly mediocre season. We shall see how the remainder plays out. I'm looking ... read more
Might as well has this here too, it's been three years since I wrote it. I think it still holds true. Space for rent. Your ad here. My name is ... read more
I forgot to post this prior to week one, but given the outcome of that game, maybe it was for the best. Anyway, the Browns season is underway and that ... read more
Over the weekend a band that was very dear to my heart announced their sudden breakup and played their final show. I first became acquainted with Life Long Tragedy over ... read more
I was yelled at again for writing this, and since I am applying for a job at a local newspaper, I don't really want this hanging over my head. Sorry ... read more
Last night my band played with Souvenir's Young America, City of Ships, and Monolith at Siren Records in Doylestown, PA; it was a fun time all the bands played real ... read more
If you didn't hear the news, Roy Scheider died this week at the age of 75. Jaws is one of my all-time favorite films. I am extremely sad. I fully ... read more
They could make me look not so good to certain people. Nobody read them anyways. read more
So, back when Cave In's Until Your Heart Stops dropped on the hardcore masses several years back, I had the chance of catching the band at Middlesex County Community College. ... read more
I broke out my CD for the Gehenna- The War of the Sons of Light and the Sons of Darkness and saw something that always made me smile. Allow me ... read more
Hello. Some of you might remember (or have participated in) my experiment over the summer collecting people's wishes on this page. I got over 160 entries and published them all ... read more
Imagine being in this kid's place... Interview w/ Henry Rollins read more
Even though it is just a joke, I'd still vote for Stephen Colbert for president before I'd vote for anyone else for running, outside of the longshots that have no ... read more
Dear Atreyu, Please stop. No seriously, please stop...now. - File has been removed. It was up for a month. It was the band's cover of Faith No More's "Epic." - ... read more
I woke up today at 5:30am to get my ass to the store to open it for what I figured would be another boring Sunday at work. Work has been ... read more
So the man that founded Factory Records and helped Joy Division become as huge as they did through hype died today. Not alot of people repect what Wilson did for ... read more
Yesterday during rush hour traffic on 35W the bridge than spans the mighty Mississippi fell. There was no earthquake. There was no terrorist attack. The bridge just buckled and toppled ... read more
Part 1: Mission Statement, Introduction, and first terribly nostalgic musing A number of years ago, a few friends of mine, myself, and people who would quickly become my friends used ... read more
Shook Ones, for the uninitiated, are a melodic hardcore band from Seattle, Washington. Their debut LP, Sixteen, had some serious Kid Dynamite aping going on, without a doubt, but it ... read more
Remember when the idea of Friday the 13th used to be scary? Maybe its because I am a grown adult, but there just does not seem to be any horror ... read more
You have no idea how wonderful it is to be finally typing these words. Not that my work is done: a SPB staffer's work is never done! But seriously: typing ... read more
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