Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Mike Gordon, 3/22/11, Brooklyn Bowl, NYC

Mike Gordon, 3/22/11, Brooklyn Bowl, NYC

After waiting for what seemed like forever for this show AND taking an intense 2 week gig with very little (if any) sleep in the weeks leading up to it--- Mike Gordon almost became the only obstacle standing between me and snoe.down. It was a Hump Show, if you will. Despite that, I was still super psyched to see Mike and seriously needed this show to blow off some steam.

Work ran late, so I missed a hippie carpool. Instead, I jumped in the Quad Laser solo and fucking FLEW down to Brooklyn Bowl, getting there with about 20 minutes to spare (only cuz the band went on 45 minutes "late"). Totes Ninja. Phew! Stepping in the door was a HUGE sigh of relief. Getting the Strawberry Margarita was an additional sigh of relief. Ahh, Brooklyn Bowl... Where was the sound gonna work tonight?

Mike finally hit the stage and kicked off his 2-night stand with an awesomely solid first set. The band is still amazing. The energy in the room just built upon itself.

Bouncy Idea. A sweet as molasses The Walls of Time. Sugar Shack was solid and the floor was totally shaking. This is approximately aboot the time my buddy Stavros claims to have actually levitated. Cities was high energy and up-tempo ala the original Talking Heads version as opposed to the Phish cover. Great shit. The room was buzzing. Mellow Heavy Metal -> Spiritual Jam which featured Mike and Scott on groovy percussion and a horrible green laser robot that kept stabbing me in the corneas with burning. Funky Crumblin' Bones. My favorite bit of the night was by far Beck's Black Tambourine, which was a sweet sweet dark treat. Phatty Hap-Nappy closed off the set and the entire room was smiling.


A substantial portion of the audience left during setbreak and it soon became a Very Intimate Evening with Mike Gordon. Aww yeah. Set 2 highlights: The Void, featuring a dance contest that I tried to get Salvo to enter. He did not. A Mike-tastic Middle of the Road. The reason you love Mike Gordon. Suskind Hotel -> La La La -> Suskind Hotel, a jammin' closer with a Meat encore for dessert. Loud and lovely.

By the time the show ended, there were maaaybe 40-50 people left on the floor. Tuesday night's a rough sell, I suppose. More people should have stuck around, cuz it was still an awesome vibe through the very end.

Mike signed my poster at the merch booth. Aww, Mike. *hearts*. Then I went home^ and worked til 6:30AM. Good times.

Mike's still my favorite Phish side-project. TEAM GORDO. 3/22/11, Brooklyn Bowl, NYC: 9 HUZZAHS^^!

And now, time to continue wrapping my head around whatever the fuck went down during snoe.down this past weekend. A very strange tale indeed.

Mike Gordon, Tuesday, 03/22/2011
Brooklyn Bowl, Brooklyn, NY
Set 1: Idea, The Walls of Time, Sugar Shack, Cities, Can't Stand Still, Heavy Metal -> The Spiritual Jam, Crumblin' Bones, Black Tambourine, Hap-Nappy
Set 2: Horizon Line, The Void*, Cruel World, Got Away, Middle of the Road, Suskind Hotel -> La La La -> Suskind Hotel
Encore: Meat

* Dance contest.

Musicians: Mike Gordon, Scott Murawski, Craig Myers, Tom Cleary, Todd Isler (ALL OF THEM ARE AWESOME)

Thanks to phish.net for the setlists!

DOWNLOAD THE SHOW! My Lappy 300 is too old for Torrents, so you decide!

Mike Salvo's: http://bt.etree.org/details.php?id=543481
Scott Bernstein's: http://bt.etree.org/details.php?id=543624


^ (sans pothole collisions!)
^^ .5 points added for running into Stavros and not recognizing him with the total Wook Beard and fleece. WTF, dude?

Thursday, March 10, 2011

An Open Letter to Geovany Soto

Dearest Geovany Soto,

With the 2011 XMLB draft less than 36 hours away, I'm addressing our emotionally abusive past head-on.

2008 NL Rookie of the Year, I was eager to snatch you up for 2009's The Devil Toads. Your season was a botched back alley abortion. I swore you off- never again.

Then came along 2010 and a stellar Spring Training line. Munchies possibly subsided, weight lost, and every condition for a comeback year was in place. A sleeper, perhaps? The Tijuana Donkeys could use leadership like that. Geovany Soto, goddamn you-- I bit. I bit hard and your late season even began to pick up, despite a nagging shoulder injury, which eventually ended it all in September.

This year: 2011. The Year of the Rabbit. Reports of "perfect health" have you being touted as a Top 5 Catcher. I SAY "NAY", GEOVANY SOTO. "NAY" & "BAH".

Fool me once, Soto, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me. Fool me thrice? Fuck that. It's time to have your latest "career year"^ on Babitz's roster. I can't take it anymore, totes dramz, it's too hard.

Manager, Ride The Walrus^^

^ You do realize, he will now.
^^ subject to change without notice

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Almost God Street Wine, 2/25/11, Joe's Pub, NYC

Almost God Street Wine, 2/25/11, Joe's Pub, NYC

"It was like being in a womb. It was fucking awesome!"
-Rhonda Lieberman

Sweet Baby 211, there was so much fucking traffic on the way to this show that I nearly had a heart attack! GAAAH! I finally made it to the SOLD OUT Joe's Pub with a few minutes to spare. Phew! So, I had a lovely mojito, ran into a ton of folks, and made my way over to the little nook where Mark and I landed at the Todd Snider show last month.

Dos Heteros + 2! Lo Faber & Aaron Maxwell + Jon Bevo & Dan Pifer! ALMOST GOD STREET WINE!!! Fuck yeah!

First of all, there was a fucking Grand Piano on the stage- let's start with that. Yes. Sweet.

The boys (still poppin' fresh from Jamcruise) hit the stage and welcomed us with a bouncy Borderline. Thirsty was beautiful. Jason Crosby joined them on violin for Bevo's catchy-as-hell Beautiful Lies. -> Stranger. Wow. This was Almost God Street Wine. I kept expecting Lo to open the drawer to the onstage credenza and our Live Tomo 3D Hologram would jump out and play. Like the size of Mike Teevee. "Can you hear me? Am I coming in clear?"

Upside Down & Inside Out was stunning. The crowd even started to join in--- ahh, gotta love those 2 drink minimum tables at a short show! Molly was nothing short of brilliant and featured Lo absolutely fucking ROCKING OUT on the guitar solo! Hot damn! Then an awesome Chop!, which Tomo may not remember, but I've been wanting to hear again for a decade. AWESOME!!! Funny Kinda Love-- also AWESOME!!! Then, by far the most random of all historical GSW song resurrections over the past two years--- Edgar's Back In Town! (<-- hey man, it's purple.) Wow! This was probably the first time I've ever heard it live! That makes me feel less old! Totes rockin'!

Jason came back on for the remainder of the show. Lo switched to an electric for a beautiful Epiphany. With the electric guitar, Bevo, & Jason, the twirly-ness of the song remained solidly intact. Awesome. -> Angeline, which Aaron & his lungs totally nailed (again). His voice is unreal right now. UN-FUCKING-REAL. And then a super-happy Nightingale to close out the set. Having the other two guys and Jason on this, adds so many more dimensions. It's just wonderful. They encored with Straight Line, our last chance to hear Aaron show off for at least a few weeks.

The set was entirely too short, but I savored every second of it, I tell you whut.

Man, I love Dos Heteros, but Almost God Street Wine is so fucking awesome too. The guys were smiling the ENTIRE time (as was the rest of the room). Dan held down the groove all goddamn night. It was so wonderful to see him bouncing in the back, hearing his voice, and then disappearing mysteriously into the night. Bevo totally killed it on the Grand Piano, it was great to see/hear him again so soon. Jason's violin is such a natural compliment to the mix, it's a pleasure whenever he pops up at a gig. And of course, Lo & Aaron fucking rule.

Joe's Pub was a great venue for this gig, except that we all got booted out of there immediately after the show, so they could set up for the 2nd (Primetime) show of the night. That kinda blew cuz there was no time to celebrate with the Winos. We must take over Joe's for the full night next time! Yes! And perhaps add an Afterparty?

In the back room after the show, the exchange of a Giant Red Suitcase took place. The scene itself was reminiscent of Pulp Fiction. However, we did learn what the contents of this particular giant red suitcase were: a chunk of The Paul Ducharme's tape collection. I felt honored to hold one of his old cassettes. One particular was from the Rhinecliff Hotel in '88 or '89 with a dementedly sick setlist. There was a familiar sort of old tape cassette residue on it that stuck to my fingers long after I'd put it back with it's brethren. Perhaps I've absorbed some of it's powers? These will hopefully make their way onto archive.org very soon.

This show felt like being embraced in a great, big, warm hug. See Rhonda's quote up top? She got the same feeling from this truly special evening. I really really really really really REEEEAAAAALLLY hope they break out this lineup some more. Even if it's only every few months. Or twice a year. Too greedy? The thing is if I say "at least once a year", it'd be a lie, because I'd really really really really REEEEAAALLLY like to see it again, at least once more, this year (and every year). Or like, every (remaining) month (left on Earth). Can I freebase Almost GSW?

Almost God Street Wine, 2/25/11, Joe's Pub, NYC: 10 HUZZAHS!!! AWESOME.

UPDATE: Macky has posted the links to some of Linda Phillips' footage of the show in the comments section below-- check 'em out!! Thanks Macky & Linda!

Oh yeah, and there's a Jackson Diner in Union Square now! WOOOOT!

Beautiful Lies->*
Upside Down Inside Out
Funny Kinda Love
Edgar's Back in Town

Straight Line*

* with Jason Crosby

DOWNLOAD THE SHOW! Thanks, Scott Bernstein! http://www.archive.org/details/gsw2011-02-25.tlm170.flac16


^ This is exactly why I will remain hopeful for a New Eyes... someday.