Archive for Music

Coming Soon: “Diving Lessons”, Jellyfish Brigade

Posted in Album Premiere, Art, Media, Video with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on Monday, June 9, 2014 by sir minivan dad

Jellyfish Brigade’s Diving Lessons is set to be released June 24th, 2014.  Here is a little teaser for the album.  More to come soon.  The video and the site (below) explain it all.  Get ready.

More info on Jellyfish Brigade at http://jellyfishbrigade.com/.

Enjoy.

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Red Fang at Mill City Nights

Posted in Concert Reviews, Culture, Life Perspectives from T.S. Niebeling, Local Love, Mind Inversion Exclusive, News, Reviews, The Learned Man's Take with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on Thursday, June 5, 2014 by sir minivan dad

Red Fang at Mill City Nights was great… Yeah, except for the fact that Mill City Nights doesn’t allow you to take cameras within the venue. Naturally, since I infrequently contribute to a music blog I enjoy catching a show featuring one of my favorite bands, and maybe taking photos. Red Fang is absolutely about the things I love; drinking beer, partying, being broke, living in Portland (well maybe not that), and being hyper-trendy by just being original. I thought for a moment that I could get into Mill City Nights and snap some photos for a write-up; I was wrong. That is why this post has no photo.

Wednesday, June 4th, hours before the show, I sit at work watching the clock and contemplating either (a) selling the extra tickets I purchased, or (b) begging my other friends to join me. When Red Fang announced their show in Minneapolis I scooped up 6 tickets (the limit), because when Alt-J came I couldn’t have purchased enough tickets. I thought Red Fang would sell out in a heartbeat. I was wrong. I had 6 tickets and no takers. 7 pm hits, Dan texted me to let me know he had made it, he was in. I told him no worries, biked home, and put on my rocking pants and downed a rum and coke. Dan, Ryan, and Caroline showed at my house at about 7:45 pm. I was about 5 ribs deep in dinner and 3 beers down and ready to go. Meanwhile my camera battery was charging in the living room. I was prepared to get some epic shots.

8:30 pm we bike to the venue- all 4 of us, about a 1.5 mile jaunt. I bring an extra lock, we lock our bikes to a tree, and this is where the problem begins; firstly, Dan has a 3 inch pocket knife, as do I, that security over zealously locates on his person, and they lose their shit. I sell my 2 extra tickets no problem, at face value, just before I step in line to get groped. Dan’s knife is about as threatening as safety scissors. He puts it by the bikes which are locked to a tree. The security lady finds my knife. I also hide my knife next to the tree. After all of this I get back in line and I reach the security lady again, and it’s, “open the bag…” In my bag is a Sony Alpha 390, and an extra lens. The lady gives me a quizzical look and I am confused. She says, “That can’t come in, you’ll have to put it in a car.” I tell her I biked, she says “too bad”. More security converges on me, they laugh and tell me they can take care of it, but I won’t get it back. I am completely baffled. I am not allowed to take photos? Why can a paying patron at a venue not bring a digital camera within the premise? I must ask… Apparently this is Mill City Nights’ policy, unless you are press. See www.millcitynights.com/frequently-asked-questions

There was really no answer, just “those are the rules…”

I am totally blown away by this claim. I purchased my tickets, I brought in 5 other people who effectively spend money, which amplifies the business Mill City Nights generates, and I am not allowed to bring in my personal camera to document my experience. This is completely fucked. Worst service I have ever had…

Two security guards; the lady and another guy shake their heads and tell me it is impossible to get inside with my camera. Their meat-head manager is standing above them with arms crossed. He is looking on disparagingly- specifically at me, confirming a good find to his subordinates. He laughs in his salmon colored button up shirt, in his fake tan and straight teeth. He shakes his head too, and acknowledges the good work by his cronies.

I literally am confounded. I make suggestions. To everything I say the answer is “Nope.” “We just can’t do it.” The manager tells me I can request a “press pass”, “just go inside and ask for a press pass.” He says. I think: Okay, why can’t I just go inside with my camera? Surely I am not going to leave it out here with these unhelpful individuals, and my camera is not dangerous, or anything that would cause a problem. This was clearly a power trip in progress. Give some people an inch and they go a mile.

I am holding up the lines, my friends are waiting. I walk inside, I ask for a “press pass” which, of course, I am denied. I am told by the man behind the counter “sorry”. He puts his arms in the air as if that is a good enough excuse. I walk back with Dan to the security guards and their manager.

At this moment I realize there is no way I am bringing my camera in, at least in a functioning capacity. I suspect the “press pass” is for paying members of the media; I wonder what City Pages et al. pay to get the best photos. I think of how they take away competition by putting a price on it, a proper monopoly. It goes to show you who and what runs the city of Minneapolis, at least publication-wise, and I mean advertisements and currency.

Dan tries to reason with all 3, and miraculously they ponder some alternative aside from me biking home to store the camera…

The guards tell me to take my camera out of the bag so they can inspect it. They tell me because I brought an extra lens I cannot bring it inside, certainly. However, they say maybe if I take the battery out and give it to them I can keep the camera, it’s that or give up my baby. I hand over the battery, they assure me that they are not responsible for it being lost or damaged (even with it in their possession). How convenient. The guard takes my battery rendering my camera useless and won’t guarantee its safe keeping- fuckin’ thanks. Mill City Nights at its best; the worst.

The show itself was a different story. The crowd was alive and ready to go. I saw some local punk types and some out-of-towners alike. The opening act was a treat- I forget the name because of the hubbub which took place upon entry. But they played their part well.

Now, we are front and center sipping on PBR’s, naturally, and waiting in anticipation. I look in front of the gate to see some preppy kid with a Canon snapping photos. He is wearing a multi-colored button-up that his mom probably ironed before the show. To my amazement, another cameraman wearing almost identical attire steps in front of the gate as well. They are snapping like their lives depend on it! They are even escorted by security, ha! Presently, I see why I wasn’t allowed to bring my camera. These guys had it covered, they must be important. The first act ends with some drum solo a cappella bit. It was interesting. I was ready for Red Fang.

Exit first band left stage pursued by a bear- in the darkness of the room and the lights of the stage. Sound check for Red Fang goes off without a hitch. I can see every member of Red Fang plain as day. They came to rock. Some guy with dreads asks me about the camera situation, I tell him I am not with any publication- I don’t work for City Pages or Vita.mn. He is more inquisitive. I tell him I am a spy. I am here on a secret mission, almost foiled at the gate. I am sort of famous now at this show- kind of neat. He asks me about the make and model and scoots in front of me to get a better spot. He is completely confused about the camera situation. I don’t think he even cares.

Red Fang starts up. The whole show is a rush of energy. The smell of sweat and vomit creeps into my nose. They play most of my favorite songs from their first 2 records and some new ones. The crowd goes nuts. Red Fang is probably not used to seeing mosh pits, being from Portland and such. They asked the crowd if there is a problem, if we were mad at each other. The crowd settled a bit only up until the last few songs, which of course were the most noteworthy. “Wires” started the last 3 song stretch and everyone went crazy again.There was one mediocre song in the mix and then they brought it home with “Prehistoric Dog”. I was very satisfied with the performance, and the in-set banter. These guys are savvy and clever.

The set was great, both bands rocked the house. There was just enough quality music to leave satisfied. During the show I was scanning the stage watching the versatile artists, each contributing to the wall of sound. My head was sort of sideways waiting for another row of legs and bows to be thrown, but up until the final song it was subdued and comfortable.

The highlight of the night was definitely the douchiness of the staff at Mill City Nights, top-tier lameness. A one-star Yelp review is in store.

I would advise people not to bring a camera, even if they care to capture their experience (one they paid for). The staff members are not kind, not friendly, and strictly in the business to make money. Their rules are oppressive and somewhat demeaning. Not to mention it’s embarrassing to be subjected to adversities because of a camera, in front of others while the security people and manager get a boner. My camera by no means is anything super fancy. It is a point-and-shoot with a decent lens. Whatever the reason for the no-camera-policy, I think it is completely backward. As much as I want to believe it is for a logical reason the signs point to money and local publications influence of material output. I certainly can’t outdo them sans my battery. I suggest avoiding this venue outright if you believe in freedom of press, but if you must go to see a favorite act make sure you don’t bring anything for documentation purposes. Or, as they say, just get a “press pass”, especially if you want to snap some photos for fun on an amateur camera.

This snafu was on par with the T-shirt salesmen at the Converge show needing a break, I had money on hand. He was about to cry to the union. But that was another time, another story.

Homeless and Big Cats, “The Food Chain” Hungry for More

Posted in News with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on Saturday, September 14, 2013 by sir minivan dad

What I find amazing is when I find something amazing that’s been residing in my city for some time unbeknownst to me.

 

Stuff in my city that I find amazing: the ever growing music scene, the progressive nature of citizen idea, booty shorts, and the openness of our community.  This openness gives artists a basis for starting on a path to achieve their goals, and to reach a specific and gracious audience.

 

Last night while drinking a few beverages with AKA I was introduced to an artist I had never heard before.  I became that specific and gracious audience member.

 

I mean I am into artists who go hard, I am into artists with great beats, and I am definitely into artists with flashy videos, that which still come across as true to life; however, finding an artist with all three of these qualities can be a daunting task.  Last night this task was fulfilled just by going to a friend’s house in South Minneapolis.  This friend has musically inclined acquaintances whom he put me on to.

As I have said before, I don’t really try.  Things seem to fall from the sky.

 

This night of drinks started with politics and went straight to hip-hop as usual.  He threw the Homeless and Big Cats video for “The Food Chain” on and I was taken away.  I love hip-hop that is raw, original, and moderately offensive in a clever way.  I would say that “The Food Chain” encompasses what I truly enjoy about this genre of music.

Underground Hip-Hop is not dead even if it is six feet underground, this video is testament to that.  This sound is underground.

One can truly be whatever they want to be, and then (whether on the side, or for full-time) create art which reaches a unique and expanding audience, speaking to them in esoteric ways to garner loyalty.  Someone may be a writer by day and a hip-hop mogul at night, you pick your poison.

 

This song is worth hearing.  Homeless is clever, creative, and truly relatable.  That is something I find amazing in Minneapolis.

 

I find this video addictive and at the same time incredibly real.  Real enough to want to hear more.

Father John Misty At First Avenue

Posted in Art, Life Perspectives from T.S. Niebeling, Mind Inversion Exclusive, Reviews, Video with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on Wednesday, May 22, 2013 by sir minivan dad

Last night I experienced something so unforgettable and so mind-blowing that I am just happy to share with the readers on Mindinversion.net.  I love music so much, yet I find it incredibly hard to write to an audience while being succinct, to the point, factual-in great depth, and at the same time remain fair, interesting, and unbiased. Like, this is what I truly listen to.  I am not just pushing this to promote someone I know. So when I come across an experience such as this I must share.  I am going to avoid the small details, not do a bio, and stick to what I know in this piece-I am going to stick to the subjective perspective of the audience member involved:  Me.

 

Let me preface by saying, I had little knowledge of Father John Misty before the show itself.  In fact, I had only heard a few songs of his on The Current, and I had read a brief bio (forwarded through email by a friend), or intro, or something in a local magazine.  The point is not that I knew of Father John Misty before going to the show, or that I was a mega-fan, or to write an A&E biography of the guy, the point is that if you have the opportunity to see Father John Misty, or you haven’t heard of his music, you should.  He is the shit, and that is what’s happening.

 

Last night I attended a Father John Misty show at First Avenue, and I was stunned by the sound, the performance, the vulgarities, the honesty, the attraction, the allure, and the general idea of Father John Misty himself.  He is a simple paradox, a dichotomy of a human being, a split personality of oneself, a diversity of contrast, not to be oxymoronic or redundant.  He is the embodiment of a true performer, one of very very few existing on earth.

 

My significant other had purchased tickets a few months back and had expressed that I could join if I cared to.  I accepted the offer, thankfully.  As now I am writing about something amazing that happened in my life.

 

We biked to First Ave. from NE Minneapolis, in the rain.  Arriving at around 9 PM, obviating the opening band, Solid Gold (for no apparent reason at all). We arrived wet and soaked to the bone.  After entering we promptly ordered whiskeys and gazed over the massive sold-out crowd of the main room floor.  Walking towards the stage we found a spot near the right side, just above the lower-level standing room area, and watched as the roadies set the stage for what was going to be a show.  After 15 minutes of waiting the band entered the room to a roar, the floor lights went dim and a spotlight hit the man at center stage. The show was on, and this is what transpired, in broken prose and obscure paragraphs:

 

Electric rock blues country indie psychedelic sound with 100% heart within the live performance.  Haunting, chilling, numbing, and genuinely real.  Sorrow was on display.  Realism was tangible.  A dark gospel was in session.

 

Father John Misty, the true performer.  Like Mercury and Morrison on stage; at times pure evil, at times sultan of seduction, at times almost bringing you to tears, or terror, and all at once, had you laughing moments later.

 

He performed the hits, some new material, and even for an encore (1 of the 3 songs) pleaser he did a rendition of The Beatles’, Happiness Is a Warm Gun.

 

His [Father John Misty] antics and ad-libs added to the amusement and brought humor and a human aspect to the set: pokes on Prince, America, and humanity rang true and effective.  I felt like I knew him by the end.  At the start I wasn’t sure if I was even a fan, at the conclusion I knew I had seen something amazing, and I needed to delve more into his musical catalog.  Fantastic.

 

Authentic, yet almost vulnerable on stage, something that garnered an emotional cord with the crowd; I was moved at his artistry and the way the lighting made the theatre on stage come alive; I was not just at a concert, I was on a journey. Father John Misty at the helm.

 

At one point, during Hollywood Forever Cemetery Sings, one of the best songs of the evening, I thought someone (Father John Misty himself) was going to choke on a mic cord; however, not to worry all was crescendo, breakdown, and lights after that.  There was an encore with 3 songs (as mentioned above) and that was it.  I stood in awe.  I was impressed.

 

End of What Transpired.

 

All that said, Father John Misty is a talented live performer.  The set he created delivered to someone who was an ignorant fan, even the backdrop was well-done.  His material has been on the radio for some time, I’ll be it more tame and polished than at the live show, but what the performance offered in dark and grit was a catalytic reflection of the manifestation of artist from album to live performance.  If you have a chance to see Father John Misty, or you haven’t purchased the album, I suggest you get on that.  Father John Misty has given us some very interesting and relatable art to listen to, however subtle and manipulated on the record, a great listen all around.

 

Father John Misty is a true performer, a real performer, someone who can put on a captivating show and not fret about reviews.  He may have shocked an awed, but he is a true artist from what I have seen.  Now, have a look for yourself.

 

 

 

 

Local Love: P.O.S.-Fuck Your Stuff

Posted in Life Perspectives from T.S. Niebeling, Local Love, News with tags , , , , , , , , on Saturday, September 22, 2012 by sir minivan dad

Oh my god, everyone is talking about P.O.S. nowadays in Minneapolis.  I have to say something…

I thought he died, just kidding, I have been reading.  Got to know what’s up on the Minneapolis Scene.  Citypages did a spot on him a bit back, a girl I work with talks about him a bunch, knows Stefon Alexander personally, literally.  Truth.

So, all this talk made me a little anxious.  I mean why wait so long to put out more music?  Oh yeah, quality control, excellente…

Last night, while getting incredibly drunk with the boys in our new house in SOUTH MINNEAPOLIS, Hammer (AKA) pulled out his fancy schmancy computer keyboard hooked up to the plasma in the living room to Youtube and bumped  the above video from P.O.S.- Fuck Your Stuff.

Firstly, I had not heard a single song off of the new album,

We Don’t Even Live Here

yet, so I had no idea what to expect.  I had been hearing some stuff, Coworker was talking a lot about how she had been listening to the CD a lot and was told not to hum the songs, even for a second, to avoid leaking anything.  She said its amazing.

Secondly, I was impressed with the music and the video itself.  I was kind of surprised; like, P.O.S. with a more matured and hardcore sound, keeping it real while being progressive, and sticking to his basic punk roots just happened in front of me.  This song literally just happened and it was good.  (I had to do a run on sentence to describe that, I know seems esoteric, but music is that way.)  Rhyming on this song is pretty great; creative, controlled, P.O.S. is vocally amazing and intimidating.

I feel I can bump this on a decent system and it will bang.  In this song P.O.S. is telling people what they want to hear, what he wants to say, and still remaining underground with the quality sound of mainstream hip hop, with actual quality.  Production value sounds amazing on this song, the beat is unique, full, and boom-stuff.  I am excited to hear more.  I have been a P.O.S. fan for some time and have been looking forward to his fourth coming release.

This video is such a teaser-

P.O.S.’s new sound is just that new, incredibly vocally driven, with wit to it.  I enjoy this song and can almost rest easy with the idea that this album will be sick.  Whatever, I want to hear it.  Send me a copy early please.

The release date is:

October 23, 2012

What Fuck Your Stuff does for me is reestablish my Love for Local Music, what P.O.S. has done, has made me want to buy his new material, as so many artist have not done recently.  I have faith in Minneapolis, with a bunch of solid music coming out of here as of late.  2012 looks to be a good year for music in the Midwest, and especially a good year for Rhymesayers Entertainment.

Listen up!

Alt-J, In Love Again

Posted in Life Perspectives from T.S. Niebeling, News, Opinion Editorial with tags , , , , , , , , on Sunday, August 26, 2012 by sir minivan dad

In life we encounter smells and visuals that automatically take us back to a time; a campfire, a family member, a favorite food.  It is refreshing as a flashback, and an important reminder of what truly matters.  Like lighting a smoke, or taking a pull.  I feel music is the same.  As in love infatuation is the feeling of love, and love is the feeling of infatuation.  I found that love again in a song.  This song inspired me to write about music a bit, especially when I feel that life has taken hold and there is nothing to do but take it in.  When other music seems unimpressive, when music seems as trivial to write about as ideas, as everyone has an opinion.  As we all have our own ideas.  I hope this song inspires the love within us all.

***

We sat bedside and she played what she told me would change my mind.  I hadn’t heard of Alt-J and I was astonished.  I still don’t know much about Alt-J and I have heard his CD 4 or 5 times over.  I was blown away.  I guess that is what smoking pot and discussing topics on someone’s bed in their parent’s house affords.  More intellect than we could forget, I took this song with me.  I must have asked her who she was playing ten times before I finally remembered.

The genre of occupation which lead me to this situation was in the food industry of Minneapolis.  I sat splayed in a bed with an intelligent girl listening to what I feel is innovative and incredibly catchy; I relate the album to having a hint of Simon and Garfunkel with Andrew Bird and overdubbing styles of Queen.

She said:  We seldom appreciate the techniques now, she discusses.  Do you know how hard it was to do this in the past?  They almost wore through tapes creating masterpieces which we listen to.

She said this all with so much excitement.

I acknowledged and pay penance, I knew this but wanted to effectively show her it struck a cord.  Her taste in music was as good as nothing a few weeks back and now I know its importance, it is stuck in my head.  It is not as important to find and possess a thing, as it is to share and hold it for others to see, take in, and understand.  Or maybe just to investigate and discard.

The simple beauty of music is there is always a special song for a special moment; this is my last month.  Weddings, first-dates, a dance.  This song will be engrained into my psyche until something new changes that, or forever.  Whichever it is, I would like to take a moment for music appreciation and say this song is stuck in my head and changing me for the better.  I hope a song does that for you.

I feel a music flashback is just as strong as a flashback brought by a smell, or a visual.  Indy rock, as in Alt-J, is incredibly good at capturing me in a sense of melancholic nostalgia.

Do yourself a favor and find someone who means something to you, turn this song on really loud, and embrace each other.

Introducing: Click Track

Posted in Local Love, Mind Inversion Exclusive, Video with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on Thursday, July 19, 2012 by sir minivan dad

For some time I had been anticipating a video from a local band, Click Track.  Straight out of La Crosse, WI.  Now that I have seen and heard, I realize this band hails with edgy creativity and promising tune.

I had no idea at how the video would go or how the new song would sound.  I was exposed to the above.  I am greatly surprised at the catchiness of the song and the quality of the video, I felt it necessary to share with you, my friends at Mindinversion.net.

Local Love presents Click Track.

Click Track Facebook Page

Click Track Reverbnation

These are some place to check out more songs, tour dates, and news on Click Track.

Click Track frontman Ryan Conrad and drummer Nick Elstad have hit it right with Dangerous Children.  They have been writing songs and creating music for sometime, playing venues in La Crosse, and elsewhere in the Midwest.  Bars, like The Cavalier, places intimate and very up close and personal.  I have known Conrad to have been writing and creating music, at least, for the past 10 years, in various acts (One point I even had the pleasure of being in a band with Conrad).  Seen em’ (Click Track) live a few times and they put on a high energy, professionally done show, with some fun.  The live show is intense and memorable, and their sound is original, at times haunting.

The song Dangerous Children is pleasantly catchy and the video is done well.  It has a hint of low-budget underground artsy film, but it remains highly effective and the songwriting speaks to quality.  I can appreciate a sense of art in production, with the progression and listenability of big league acts.  A song I can relate to and listen to many times before coming to a conclusion.

For a bit Conrad had been telling me to give his music a listen, I have known him forever and decided to.  I had not expected it to sound so new, so crisp, and so realistic.  I was happily enthusiastic.  I was intrigued, the Dangerous Children video showcases Click Track and the city of La Crosse, and a library, these are 3 positives in my book.

La Crosse is a city with a lot of musical acts, but at times, sadly, with little progression and distinguishability within the ranks and genres.

However, that is not entirely true, thanks to Click Track.

If anything Click Track is a testament that the music scene in La Crosse is changing for the better-their video speaks to said change.  Click Track is a breakthrough Indie rock band coming out of La Crosse, something I consider great, and they are pointed in the right direction.  They deserve a listen, and for the creative video they deserve a share.

Okay, so they have a megaphone, they wear suits, and they are from La Crosse, WI.  Need I say more?

The retro feel of the video, and the simple yet catchy sound have me inspired, Click Track.  As Click Track shows, there is clear potential in the Midwest for indie garage rock.