Sunday, March 20, 2005

What's Your Magic Number?

First off, I'm sorry that I haven't updated this thing in a while, but I promise that in the future, my updates will be more frequent. I was gonna post a link that had mp3s of many of the bands that are playing SXSW(the South by Southwest Music Festival) in Austin this weekend, but that link isn't up anymore and since I slacked on it, no can do (in the immortal words of Hall and Oates). Anyhow, one of the bands who played SXSW a few days is called The Magic Numbers and they played their first U.S. shows here on Monday at Sin-E and the next night opening for Doves at Bowery Ballroom.

Now, my primary reason for going to see them at Sin-E was to support the almighty Gold Streets (who played after them), though I had heard some UK buzz surrounding The Magic Numbers. Anyway, I got there a bit late and missed Pitty Sing, who I'd heard a bit about as well, but I did manage to catch about 1/2 to 2/3 of The Magic Numbers' set and they were awesome. They reminded me a bit of The Thrills or The Stands in that they're also enamored of the late '60s West Coast psych and folk that those other current UK bands love, but they also have a Teenage Fanclub-ish power poppy thing going on as well. They consist of 4 members (2 sets of siblings) and shallow as it sounds, I liked that none of them fit the thin/pretty boy/girl/rock star mold in terms of their looks. Anyway, I talked to their bass player after their set and she told me that they're signed to Heavenly Recordings and that their album (which they're still working on) will be out in May.

Another UK band who played here last week and then went on to SXSW is Maximo Park. If you go to their site, you can hear their excellent single "Apply Some Pressure" as well as some other songs that are streaming there. I missed their Rothko and Mercury Lounge shows last week, but their album is coming out on May 30th and I can't wait for it and hopefully they'll be back here by then (though probably in a bigger venue like Bowery Ballroom).

I've also been listening to The Kaiser Chiefs a lot lately. Their album, Employment, came out in the US on Tuesday and both Best Buy and J&R Music World have it for $6.99 this week. It's my album of the year so far and absolutely great stuff in the vein of The Jam, XTC, early '80s Damned and mid '90s Blur. I bought a ticket to see them at Maxwells next week, even though it's in Hoboken in the middle of the week, but I like the album so much that I don't care. They're also playing Bowery Ballroom this coming Friday (the 25th), but that show is sold out. Anyway, check 'em out because I highly recommend them.

And last, but certainly not least, Joss played Freddy's Backroom in Park Slope/Prospect Heights last night. I'd never been to Freddy's before and it was pretty cool, though a bit small and cramped in the bar area. It had a great jukebox and a bit of a honky-tonk/Americana feel to it and the blonde-haired (though it had to be a wig) bartender/waitress in the very short dress and knee-high stockings was very, very hot (though quite cranky when I didn't immediately tip her; don't worry, I eventually did).

Anyway, Joss finally went on at a bit after midnight and they played in the bar's back area, which has about 4 tables and shows lots of weird footage on 2 TV sets that hover above the stage. It was weird seeing them playing over backdrops that included footage of female boxing, sumo wrestling and bizarre weight-loss ads.

Unfortunately, because of the idiotic plan to bring the New Jersey Nets over to Brooklyn (they're called the NEW JERSEY Nets for a reason, idiot; keep them there; we already have a basketball team, though they suck, but anyway...) and in the process to build a 19,000 seat arena in the neighborhood, Freddy's may not be there for too much longer. However, if you're interested in the issue (and you should be, as a neighborhood, especially one with such beautiful brownstones as that area has, shouldn't be ruined for no good reason by a developer's greed), check this out:

So anyhow Joss played well, though only about 10-15 people were watching. They're gonna take a break from shows for a while and try to concentrate on recording a new ep. Oh and thanks AGAIN to Chris and Ann for driving me (and my friend Sara) home. You both are awesome!


Blogger cinchel said...

if you have an easytree is a torrent of some songs by hot hot heat/kaiser chiefs/future heads...taped off bbc radio

10:53 AM

Blogger japanesegodjesusrobot said...

Thanks for the tip off. I looked at this earlier and I think I'm gonna try to snatch it later. I really just wanna hear the Futureheads and Kaiser Chiefs stuff (I don't care much for Hot Hot Heat).

11:32 PM


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