Fighting disease so randy boys can wear dad jeans
Cancer killer: He might have been banned from Javalounge, but the resilient Ross Hammond bounced right back. Instead of sulking like a little creep, the dude fought breast cancer.
Yup, the Hammond family hosted a fundraiser on Saturday in their backyard (with barbecue), featuring the music of Christian Kiefer and the Alex Jenkins’ Sound Immersion. While I had to leave early and miss Jenkins’ set, I caught Kiefer playing a handful of wit-tinged songs of melancholia to a wandering crowd on Hammond’s back patio. Kiefer even busted out some Of Great and Mortal Men tracks, even though he said he might be tiring of that whole shtick.
Anyway, I just checked out Jenkins’ set on YouTube (you can, too: Go to www.youtube.com and search “Alex Jenkins’ Sound Immersion house show”). And while you’re watching the music, you can also check out a corner of Hammond’s illustrious backyard. At the end of the day, Hammond raised $808 for the American Cancer Society’s Relay for Life. Take that, cancer. (Josh Fernandez)
Lost wallet: The bike ride from Midtown to West Sacramento’s 300 Room is a breezy 30-block jaunt through empty streets and over the Tower Bridge. When you arrive at the club, located in Capitol Bowl, a sense of punk-rock biker pride takes over your being, like holding it through a Terrence Malick flick even though you have to piss so bad.
This feeling disappears immediately, though, when you reach into your back pocket and discover your wallet’s missing (for the fifth time in a year, but that’s another story).
Anyway, DJ Rick Ele let me in for free to the 300 Room KDVS fundraiser show just in time to catch Wounded Lion, a Los Angeles troupe that Ele says is one of the “top three” party bands in the circuit right now. Big-time praise.
But, alas, Wounded Lion didn’t quite live up to Ele’s sales pitch. The group—all dudes, very geeky, lots of dad jeans, a crazy multi-instrumentalist Asian dude going berserker—dish up party pop that’s heavy on nerd anthems and rock hooks. Still, I’d like to see them come back to town, because maybe I was just bummed about having to go to the DMV on Monday. (Nick Miller)
Horny in Folsom: I might have felt self-conscious about singing along to Norwegian Ida Maria’s hit “I Like You So Much Better When You’re Naked” at Powerhouse Pub in Folsom last Wednesday if I were alone in doing so. However, the place was packed from floor to its wooden ceiling with jubilant peeps, singing at the top of their lungs as soon as the tune started. Maria described the scene as “like playing in [her] hometown.”
There must be a lot of inebriated, horny people there.
Agent Ribbons, who few people in the audience seemed to have heard of, opened the night, and the crowd was polite but inattentive. This audience wanted crazy, and Blame Betty, who came next, served them an angsty punk energy, which no doubt fit right in with the tortured lives of Folsom youth. (Katie McMillin)
Poon-tang clan: Ever wanted to have sex with the Wu-Tang Clan blaring in the background, but at the same time not want to scare the person away because you want to keep having sex with them?
Of course you have. Now, here’s your chance. New York City’s El Michels Affair, a group of musicians pushing for a funk and soul resurgence, put together Enter the 37th Chamber (out on Fat Beats Records), an instrumental reworking of some classic songs by the Wu. If you thought “Uzi (Pinky Ring)” was funky, check out Affair’s version—the brassy melodies with menacing drums make the track even more sinister than its original. The interesting thing is that Affair manages to not only take Rza’s production and imitate it, but also seriously interpret the songs as a new breed of street jazz. When you hear a song like “Protect Ya Neck”—with twangy strings and rich bass—it’s hard not to envision some real underground, smoky club type of shit. It’s sexy as fuck, really.
And their version of “Shimmy Shimmy Ya,” with a chorus of children singing the hook, is—if you can imagine this—even crazier than Ol’ Dirty Bastard’s version. (J.F.)
Clarification: The rumor I printed last week about Th’ Losin Streaks breaking up has been rejected by singer Tim Foster, who says the band is slowing down on performing, not breaking up. “Mike [Farrell’s] got the solo record coming, Matt [K. Shrugg’s] in 250 bands and I’ve got a bunch of irons in the fire,” Foster said in an e-mail last week. Sorry guys, I misunderstood. In other news, it’s rumored that guitarist Farrell sprouted angel wings and is learning to fly by jumping off moderate-sized houses in Natomas. Could this be true? (J.F.)
Who’s there? Don’t forget, SN&R presents Knock Knock this Saturday at Luigi’s Fun Garden (1050 20th Street, 8 p.m., only $5). This is the band’s first performance of 2009. Silver Darling and Missouri Mule open.