Light of the Stereo

Light of the Stereo

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Tuesday Double Feature:Austin Lucas "Thunder Rail" & Butch Walker & The Black Widows "Summer of '89"

Nostalgia is a powerful thing and when it comes to music, their is no subject that gets more time on tape. From the sorrow of regret to the cotton candy haze of childhood memories, musicians have been recollecting on the past since the first voice was raised in harmony.

So this week's Tuesday Double Feature is dedicated to that desire built into us all to return to a different time. Here's to remembering some good memories or burying some bad ones and the diverse soundtrack to accompany you on your journey.

Austin Lucas - "Thunder Rail"

Fittingly set in a basement where all memories seem to dwell.

Born with a coal miner’s soul, the music of Austin Lucas has a certain honesty to it, as though told through the revealing golden light of bourbon. If you don't have any plans tonight you can catch him opening for Reverend Payton's Big Damn Band at Dante's. Amazing live, it's well worth being a little bit tired tomorrow morning. Link

Butch Walker & The Black Widows
- "Summer Of '89"

Bryan Adams has got nothing on these boys.

A long time veteran of the music scene Butch Walker and his band The Black Widows have earned their stripes on the road and the studio. Having just released their latest album The Spade, the band is preparing to head out on tour soon. Unfortunately their isn't a show scheduled for our neck of the woods but it's still early. So keep you ears pealed.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Quick Note: Catching Up in the Month of September

As some people deep clean in spring, I've decided to take this Month to catch up on a few things that got thrown on the back burner. With that in mind you can expect some neat things poping up on By the Light of the Stereo (BLS) in the next few weeks including a few album reviews, a bunch of About Last Night features and hopefully an interview or two. Here's the bad news though, unfortunately I won't be posting any Triple Crowns in September. Once I get some of this back log of material off my plate though I'll be ready to start fresh in October. I already have my eyes on a bunch of great shows to populate next month's Triple Crowns and believe me when I tell you that they'll be well worth wait. Also, I promise that if I see any really good shows coming our way I'll throw out a quick little preview so that you don't miss out..

As for the Tuesday Double Features, I'll still be posting them on time so you can get your weekly video fix. Speaking of which, if you haven't checked out last week's Zombie extravaganza then make sure you pop by before you leave.

Well I better get to it, cause I got a lot to catch up on. Thanks again to everyone that takes the time to read BLS. I might write for the love of the music but it's for you all that I keep doing it. So keep checking back, cause you don't want to miss a thing. Also this might be a great time to find our Facebook page and send us a line. I'd love to hear from you all about the music you love and the bands you'd like me to cover. While you're their check out the Photo Albums.
Hope to hear from you and don't forget.

Keep the music playing and play it loud.

Mark A. Lawrence IV
Writer / Editor

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Tuesday Double Feature: Sweet Teen Killing Machine "City of the Shrieking Dead" & Peaches and Iggy Pop"Kick It"

I don't know about you, but as of late I have fallen in love with Zombies. I'm not sure what it is about the lumbering flesh eaters that has arrested my fascination so securely, but I'm hooked. From the classics movies of George A. Romero to Max Brooks' novel World War Z, theirs no brain munching, intestine devouring undead ghoul I don't like.
So in honor of the underdogs of the living dead ranks and the survivors that must fight to keep their flesh on their bones, this week's Tuesday Double Feature highlights two videos that feature these hungry corpses.

Sweet Teen Killing Machine - "City of the Shrieking Dead"

Zombie bashing femme fatal and horror punk rock, what else can you ask for.

I was hoping to catch Portland's Sweet Teen Killing Machine at this years Musicfest NW but unfortunately they cancelled their show last minute. Their raw horror punk is dark and gritty and I'm hoping that I can see them play live soon. Until then I have their digital presence to keep the things denizens of the dark at bay.

Peaches feat. Iggy Pop - "Kick It"

It seems totally natural that both Peaches and Iggy Pop fight zombies on the side. Don't you think.

Peaches and Iggy Pop are both artist on the edge and I can't think of any one better to have at my side in a zombie apocalypse. Peaches was just at the Roseland with her one woman DJ/MC act while Iggy Pop and this legendary band mate the Stooges are celebrating the special deluxe edition release of their album Raw Power.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Musicfest Northwest:: The Game Plan

Tonight marks the start of 2011's Musicfest NW, Portland's premier music event of the year. The hype that this will be the grandest Musicfest yet is no lie. With 197 acts playing 21 venues, all squeezed into 5 amazing nights, this will be a week to remember. With all that music though, you have to have a game plan so in lue of a Triple Crown I thought I 'd share my picks for this years Musicfest NW. I hope you all have your own plans, but if you have a few open spots in your schedule, I've listed the shows I most excited about and hope you might check a few of them out yourself.

Wednesday, September 7th

10PM Hurry Up!
Mississippi Studios
3939 N Mississippi Ave
21 & Over

Portland's newest punk sensation, Hurry Up has a rambunctiously youthful energy that can only be captured in the thralls of punk rock rebellion. A supper group of sorts that includes Kathy Foster and Westin Glass of the Thermals and fellow underground veteran Maggie Vail, Hurry Up can back up their energy with the staying power of experience. I recently caught them opening at the East End and they were awesome and their show at Mississippi is a great way to start off the week.

Thursday, September 8th

10PM Witch Mountain
350 W. Burnside St.
21 & Over

If the 80's and David Grohl have taught us anything, it's that you should always make a little room for good metal in your life. Their is something to say of the cheap high you get killing useless braincells in the act of head banging. In this case I'm making sure to catch Portland's own Witch Mountain. A thick stew of instrumentation, their melodic grind has a bluesy sensuality that is heightened by the soulful voice of Uta Plotkin. Dante's red room atmosphere is a perfect match for this band and their music which will increase the enjoyment of this show as a pairing of the right wine can make a meal that much better.

11PM Handsome Furs
320 SE 2nd Ave
All Ages

The music of this married couple from Montreal is a shadowy grit-pop that oozes with a seedy industrial kink. The soundtrack of back ally hook ups and unmentionable after parties in skid row hotels, these songs have a lusty seduction to them that makes you crave them like your worst vices. I'm guessing this show will be sinfully fun and I might just need a shower afterwards, but sometimes it's the things that get you dirty that are the most fun.
If you want a taste of their sound, I featured their video for "Dumb Animals" in last weeks Tuesday Double Feature so check it out.

12PM Phantogram
Doug Fir Lounge
830 E. Burnside St.
21 & Over

LinkThe jazzy minimalistic dream scape of Phantograms music is a beautifully sparse environment that is inhabited by extremes, each sound making an impact twice as powerful as it's initial energy. Created by the duo of Joshua Carter and Sarah Barthel, I'm looking forward to seeing how their songs translate to the Doug Fir stage.

Friday, September 9th

9PM Anais Mitchell
Aladdin Theater
3017 SE Milwaukie Ave
All Ages

For Friday night I feel the best bang for the effort is camping out at the Aladdin Theater for a show case of storytellers and folk song writers. Opening is the melodic beauty of Anais Mitchell. With a diversely soulful voice that can strut about with an attitude of a blues diva or can softly tell a story so touching you can almost feel the soft caress of her breath upon your cheek.Her songwriting is wonderfully organic and has a universal quality that's charming to audiences of all ages, as my 10 year old daughter will tell you. I'm excited to take the whole family to this all ages show at the Aladdin Theater.

10PM Joe Pug
Aladdin Theater
3017 SE Milwaukie Ave
All Ages

Following Anais Mitchell is the storytelling perfection of Joe Pug. In my opinion one of the brightest rising stars to have picked up a guitar in the last few years. I might go as far as to say he could be the next Bob Dylan. Imbued with more honesty than Mumford and Son his musical tales are the callused handed revelation of the common man in all of us. I have become obsessed with his music and I look forward to seeing him fill the warmly embracing acoustics of the Aladdin Theater with the comforting sound of his road worn voice.

Saturday, September 10th

9PM Violet Isle
Jimmy Mak's
221 NW 10th Ave
21 & Over

Wonderfully multifaceted the Violet Isle's can be both bold and detailed. Their rich acoustic pop provided each song with a beautifully distinct flavor and their live show provides a lovingly fresh insight into their music that should not be passed up.

10PM Heavy Cream
Mississippi Studios
3939 N. Mississippi Ave
21 & Over
Somewhere between the Donna's and the Runaways, Heavy Cream, except for their one Y Chromosome, is the poster child for girl empowerment. Screw Hannah Montana and Taylor Swift, these are the girls I want my daughter to look up to. At least they can play their own instruments and they don't need to infect her with their unresolved daddy issues. Powerful and hungry you can hear it in their music. I'm excited about this show at Mississippi, because I can only believe that their live show will blow the audience away. If your curious abut the band,check out the video for "Watusi" which was included in last weeks Tuesday Double Feature. Check it out.

11PM Jared Mees & The Grown Children
600 E Burnside St.
21 & Over

Fun and playful Jared Mees and his Grown Children play the kind of music that makes you skip. Filled with the child like glee of sugar high sleep overs and carefree day dreaming; these songs might make one forget,even for just a moment, the bill buried world life turns into when you get older. I'm sure their set at Rontoms will rejuvenate it's audience with a popish energy that will let them finish the night strong .

12 PM Ravishers
Someday Lounge
125 NW 5th Ave
21 & Over

The jazzy pop of Portland's Ravishers is filled with dreamy urban melodies and a danceable beat that gets under your skin in all the best kind of ways. Vibrant and luscious with the wonderfully light-hearted energy that defines the Portland Pop sound, this band is making the right kind of commotion. I'm certain that big things are waiting for them just around the corner. So take this chance to catch these home town boys before the road claims them for its own.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Tuesday Double Feature: Phantogram "When I'm Small" & Jared Mees & The Grown Children "Hungry Like A Tiger"

I'll keep it short and sweet. For this weeks Tuesday Double Feature I picked videos by two of the bands I'm hoping to catch during Musicfest NW.


- When I'm Small

Jared Mees & the Grown Children - Hungry Like A Tiger