I’m kind of confused…
My friend says that Wilco is soft – at least anything post Ghost is Born. Really?
I mean, yeah, Wilco (The Album) kinda sucked, as did Sky Blue Sky to a certain extent, but does liking those albums automatically make me a pussy?
He also says that the best new stuff around is Bon Iver. (Say it like you’re French, like "bone eve-air," squares). You know, wispy, high pitched vocals, songs about lost loves, and stuff like that.
And Wilco’s soft?
No, they’re not soft I keep telling myself. He doesn’t know what he’s talking about, right? He’s the one who, after the My Morning Jacket show said, "Well, they’re no Bon Iver."
What does that even mean? I kind of want to release my "friend’s" contact info to the infamous KCC commentariat to do with it what they will. Hmmm…
Side note: Wilco is coming to the Uptown on December 3rd just shortly after the release of their new album, that I hear is not "soft" at all. Nor crappy like the last two. So to recap that’s: 1) new Wilco album and show at the Uptown; 2) not soft; and 3) not crappy.
On to this weekend’s picks…
Friday, September 9th
Bon Iver at the Uptown Theater in KC
The brainchild of Justin Vernon, Bon Iver has come a long way in a short amount of time. Their debut album was released in 2007, and indie folks took notice immediately. That album was recorded mostly while Vernon was isolated in the north woods of Wisconsin at his father’s cabin, which also served as the basis for the band’s name – "bon iver" is a rough translation of "good winter" in French.
The band’s most recent effort, the self-titled Bon Iver, was released this past June and instantly made hipsters, coffee shop people, and artsy folks cream their jeans. Pitchfork’s Mark Richardson gave the album an unheard of 9.5 rating, and, commenting on Vernon’s unique vocals, gushed, "He sounds centered and clear while taking stock and allowing memories to be mixed in with the details of the present. His conflicted vocals trigger a half-dozen feelings all at once before releasing the tension with a refrain that finds the fleeting moment where the world seems right…"
Uh, get a room you guys.
But seriously, this is one of the shows I’ve been most looking forward to, even though I wouldn’t consider myself a real Bon Iver fan, per se. Not only has the band been repped by the hippest of the hip, all the in-the-know new hit makers, and even Kanye. But the band’s sound is simply unique right now, combining lush arrangements, heavily layered falsetto vocals, and intricate instrumentation.
If you can still get a ticket to the Uptown for this Friday I highly recommend you do so because it should be a unique show.
I’m putting the over/under on audience members telling each other to shut the fuck up and listen to the music at 5 1/2 for this show.
Blink-182 at Sandstone Amphitheater in Bonner Springs
These Cali pop punkers know how to sell an album or 20 million. And they seem to have a good time doing it, running around naked, making prank phone calls, and generally acting like teenagers with bad attitudes. Their breakthrough album, Enema of the State, was released in 1999 and contained a ton of singles including What’s My Age Again?, All the Small Things, and Adam’s Song.
Since then, Blink have released several more albums, sold a ton more records, fired a drummer, hired a drummer, broken up, gotten back together, and been in a plane crash. And yet, here they are, ready to rock KC’s punk ass out at what should be a great show with perfect weather.
The other headliner at this show is My Chemical Romance, an emo pop alternative band that reached its height probably a year or two ago with the release of The Black Parade, which received heavy air time on alternative and modern rock radio.
Also performing is Matt & Kim, an up-tempo dance electronic weirdo duo from NYC that tore up the Beaumont a few months ago.
Oh, and KCC photog Katie will be out there, so try to look presentable for once.
Saturday, September 10th
Saturday afternoon and evening looks like it will be the perfect time to wander around the Crossroads Arts District stumbling from bar to bar and catching a ton of great local music. The venues involved are Crosstown Station, Press Bar, Czar Bar, The Brick, Mercy Seat Alley, and Kansas City Café.
With so many bands, I’m going to take the opportunity to check out some acts that I’ve been meaning to see for a while now, like Dollar Fox, The Latenight Callers, Thee Water Moccasins, and Sons of Great Dane.
Here’s the full schedule:
2 to 4 p.m.: Pre-festival, in-store performances by Deco Auto and the Safes
7:30 p.m.: My Brothers & Sisters
9:30 p.m.: Grisly Hand
11:30 p.m.: Sex Police
1:30 a.m.: Reach, Milkdrop, Headfella, Dutch Newman and DJ Ataxic
The Press (top level) at Crosstown Station
6:30 p.m.: Supermassive Black Holes
8:30 p.m.: The Columns
10:30 p.m.: Fourth of July
12:30 p.m.: Latenight Callers
6:30 p.m.: Silver Maggies
8 p.m.: Sara Swenson & Pearl Snaps
9:30 p.m.: Atlantic Fadeout
11:15 p.m.: Dollar Fox
1 a.m.: Thee Water Moccasins
7 p.m.: The Rural Grit All-Stars
8:45 p.m.: Victor & Penny
10:30 p.m.: The Safes
12:15 p.m.: Sons of Great Dane
1:45 p.m.: New Riddim
Mercy Seat Alley
7:30 p.m.: Roustabouts
9:30 p.m.: Faster Than Hell
11 p.m.: Cherokee Rock Rifle
Kansas City Café
6:45 p.m.: David George
8 p.m.: Brian Frame and Andrew Haywood Luker
9:15 p.m.: The Dim Peepers
10:30 p.m.: Nicolette Paige