I first met Teal Gardner (lead singer, UUVVWWZ) through my friend and former AvantTrash co-author, AliUptown, when they were still in high school students in Lincoln, NE. She had a creative and crazy energy that if channeled properly, I knew it could make some very interesting art. A few years later I found that to be true when I saw her play a very strange and noisy solo set, just her and a guitar at The Chatterbox (reincarned at The Bourbon). It might have even been an Open Mic Night that I was running sound for, I remember there were maybe 15 people in the whole place at that time. I turned to Anders, the drummer of the band I was in at the time, and said, “We need to start a band with this girl, she can sing her ass off.” Her guitar playing was minimal and ham-fisted, and there were a lot of weird, passionate squeals and tortured shrieky trills; but her voice had that quality that some singers just have and other singers work their whole lives trying to achieve. Graduation came a few months later and a wanderlust trip to the West Coast to visit friends accidentally turned into my invitation to LA and that was that.
I later heard that a band had been formed by Teal and guitarist (and another former sound guy at The Chatterbox), Jim Schroeder. The fit couldn’t have been more perfect as. UUVVWWZ’s style is cemented by the compliment of Teal’s cacophonous creative crooning and copypasta lyrics with Jim’s prog-garage-psychedelic acid acrobatic soundscraps. The fertile ground for these postmodern melodies is given sonic stability soil by the fuzzed-to-death bass of Dustin Wilbourn (another Chatterbox sound guy) and new drummer David Ozinga. This rhythm section makes some very effective decisions with the limited amount of space it has been provided. Music this close to the edge of madness would easily be cluttered up by less-humble players.
A lot of bands seem to be really trying to be avant, noise, or weird for no reason. Somehow they must think that it pushes the boundaries of their genre or possibly they are genuinely pushing for something new. But what gives UU credibility is that they are actually pulling this all off. UUVVWWZ has been labeled as “avant blues” and makes good on that promise. And if this is the blues then Lincoln-Omaha is the new Mississippi Delta. Plan your boxcar journeys accordingly.
Below is a preview of their upcoming Saddle Creek release The Trusted Language out next Tuesday, Feb 5th. (February Tour Dates Below)
Omaha’s Icky Blossoms features Tilly and the Wall‘s Derek Pressnall, filmmaker/musician Nik Fackler, and vocalist Sarah Bohling. The band just completed the recording of their debut album with TV on The Radio’s Dave Sitek producing. You can download their track “Babes” below from Saddle Creek.
If you find yourself in Austin next week, please stop by one of these shows:
Icky Blossoms at SXSW:
Thursday 3/15 @ Waterloo Records – 2:00PM
Friday 3/16 – Saddle Creek Showcase @ Lamberts – 7:30PM
Saturday 3/17 – Mad Decent Party @ Emo’s East – 12:00PM
This video reminds me of:
2. Videos from the ’80s
Happy Valentine’s Day, you filthy animals.
“February Is for Mating
Actually, there is no proof that the good priest Valentine even existed.
Some scholars trace the period of mid-February as a time for mating back to ancient Egypt. On those same days of the year that contemporary lovers devote to St. Valentine, men and women of the Egyptian lower classes determined their marital partners by the drawing of lots.
But the time of coupling that comes with the cold nights in February before the spring thaw likely had its true origin very near where Valentine supposedly met his demise.
Among the ancient Greeks and Romans, the Wolf Charmer was called the Lupicinus. Perhaps hearkening back to prehistoric times, the Lupicinus may well have been an individual tribesman who had a particular affinity for communicating with wolves. As the tribes developed agriculture and small villages, it was necessary to have a person skilled in singing with the wolves and convincing them not to attack their domesticated animals. The Lupicinus had the ability to howl with the wolves and lead them away from the livestock pens. In some views, because he also wore the pelt of a wolf, the Lupicinus also had the power to transform himself into a wolf if he so desired.
Rites of the Lupercalia
The annual Lupercali festival of the Romans on February 15 was a perpetuation of the ancient blooding rites of the hunter in which the novice is smeared with the blood of his first kill. The sacrificial slaying of a goat-representing the flocks that nourished early humans in their efforts to establish permanent dwelling places-was followed by the sacrifice of a dog, the watchful protector of a flock that would be the first to be killed by attacking wolves.
The blood of the she-goat and the dog were mixed, and a bloodstained knife was dipped into the fluid and drawn slowly across the foreheads of two noble-born children. Once the children had been “blooded,” the gore was wiped off their foreheads with wool that had been dipped in goat milk. As the children were being cleansed, they were expected to laugh, thereby demonstrating their lack of fear of blood and their acknowledgment that they had received the magic of protection against wolves and wolfmen.
The god Lupercus, represented by a wolf, would next inspire and command men to behave as wolves, to act as werewolves during the festival.
Lupus (wolf) itself is not an authentic or original Latin word, but was borrowed from the Sabine dialect. Luperca, the she-wolf who suckled Romulus and Remus, may have given rise to secret fraternities known as the Luperci, who sacrificed she-goats at the entrances to their “wolves’ dens.” For centuries, the Luperci observed an annual ritual of chasing women through the streets of Roman cities and beating them with leather thongs.
Scholars generally agree that such a violent expression of eroticism celebrated the ancient behavior of primitive hunting tribes corraling captive women. Once a wolfman had ensnared a woman with his whip or thong, he would lead her away to be his wife or lover for as long as the “romance” lasted. Perhaps, as some scholars theorize, this yearly rite of lashing at women and lassoing them with leather thongs became a more acceptable substitute for the bloodlust of the Luperci’s latent werewolfism that in days past had seen them tearing the flesh of innocent victims with their teeth.
As the Romans grew ever more sophisticated, the Lupercali would be celebrated by a man binding the lady of his choice wrist to wrist, and later by passing a billet to his object of desire, suggesting a romantic rendezvous in some secluded place.”
Amanda “Fucking” Palmer recorded a chilling cover of “Polly” for SPIN Magazine’s tribute issue & compilation to Nirvana’s “Nevermind” last year. Recorded with members of her live touring band, Chad Raines and Michael McQuilken,the record was cut at Yale University (using many of the theater department’s special effects instruments and toys). McQuilken and Raines will be joined by bassist Jherek Bischoff (and many others) this spring to break ground on Palmer’s new recording and touring project, entitled “Amanda Palmer & The Grand Theft Orchestra”.
The more Yo-Landi tries to scare me the more I like her. Fav part of the song: the build up @ 1:50.
After phenomenal success with sold-out advance screenings all over the world, Manchester electronic-duo The Chemical Brothers will bring their highly anticipated concert event, Don’t Think to over 500 cinemas in over 20 countries.
Don’t Think will premiere in the US FOR ONE NIGHT ONLY on February 1st 2012 at 7:30pm (local time).