Monday, August 21, 2006

Ninja Basics 101

On Saturday night we drove through a tepid downpour on our way up to Gainesville. The rain was pouring so hard at times that we had to slow to 35mph on the turnpike. Craziness. Once we got to Gainesville, it just kept on raining. It was a dank, wet night at best.
Eddie C's Backstage Lounge is a really cool venue. Reminds me of the way that Will's Pub here in Orlando is set up. They had the bar area and then a whole separate closed off area where the stage and back bar were. We got there around 8pm only to find out that 2 of the bands had dropped off the bill, so we were one of three acts playing. When it came time to load in, we could not open the back van door to save our lives and had to pull everything out the side. Not a great start. After loading the rain began to pour again and we retreated inside to the safety of the pool tables, bar, and jukebox!
Yes, that's right. Another town, another jukebox. This time my Washington got me 3 plays, so for the next 10 minutes I owned the bar. Or at least the audio radiating throughout the bar. The barflys were treated to a nice playlist of Sublime, The Strokes, and I topped it off with a little Blondie. It was the best I could pull from a jukebox full of Creed and Creed-esque bands.
We arrived at 8pm but the show wasn't starting until 10:30 so we had lots of time to kill. We spent it visiting with the other bands and wondering when the crowd would start rolling in. Doug and I adventured into the storm for food while Bert and JoAnna hoofed it across the street to a Winn Dixie and got caught in the rain. It ended with JoAnna being soaked and walking around the bar barefoot.

Ed, owner of the venue had a really cool setup in the soundbooth equipped with a soundboard, lighting board, and a whole camera system which would record bands from 3 different angles recorded straight to DVD.
Along the Sidelines played first, which is our friend Josh and since the last time we'd seen him, he added a bass player named Dmo to the mix. The songs sounded much fuller and I've heard that he's currently working with a drummer to fill out the sound more. As they played Doug and I watched Ed work the camera system. It looked cool so we decided to get a DVD made of our performance.
We took the stage second, and even though we had quite a few technical issues (Mics falling, Bert's bass crapping out) we powered through our 11 song set and were pleased with the response we got from the small crowd. It's always nice to see a line of people waiting to buy your CD when you get done playing. By the last note of the last song I'm usually wondering what people are thinking, but sometimes we had loads of people waiting to talk with us, other times there's no one. Overall I think we made some new fans, and I can't wait to play at that venue again. All the bar tenders were awesome and everyone we talked to was really nice.

Thanks for being fun, Gainesville.
I might rip the DVD and post a few of the songs on our MySpace.

The rest of the weekend was spent relaxing with Amanda while Doug visited the House of Blues to catch the Head Automatica tour.

Next weekend we're playing a birthday party for some friends and possibly tacking on a last minute Saturday show. We keep busy.

The new CD from This Day & Age called "The Bell and the Hammer" is coming out soon. I was a big fan of their last disc "Always Leave the Ground" as it was very catchy, but very smart and musical at the same time. I've been listening to the new tracks they've been adding to their PureVolume page each week and so far I can say that I'm not all that impressed. I think the songs are good, but it a sleepy, relaxing kind of way. They seem to have lost the kick that made me like them to begin with. I'll probably still pick it up eventually and talk about it here to either rip it apart or explain how it's better than every CD you like.

For now I will sit here and listen to the Smashing Pumpkins while wondering why they never got the respect they deserve.

Quick! Name one band that sounds like the Smashing Pumpkins.
Trick question.
You can't.

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