The Black Angels recently descended upon The Neptune
Theater located in the U-district of Seattle and brought with them a
Wall of Death and the night’s unexpected stand out Hanni El Khatib. The doors opened a tad behind schedule
and early goers found their way to the bar, which in this renovated classic
theater is found below the balcony and offers an ample view of the stage where
statues of the god Neptune flank either side. An entire wall is filled with
glass murals honoring the god of the seas. The drinks flowing and the buzz of
the night, see the rail filled readily by dedicated fans and a warm reception
to the first act of the night.The Paris trio Wall of Death opened the night with classic
synths and slide guitars. A band with a post psychedelic sound, that embraced the
epically long song format, filled their 45 minute set with just five songs.
Their pretty boy looks, faded denim and leather resulted in a small swarm of young
females at the merch booth after the show, looking to join the band for some
backstage French lessons. While the bar was filling up with fans waiting for The second act Hanni El Khatib then took the stage. He wasted no time,
quickly grabbing the attention of the chit chatters with his “guns drawn no
bullshit style”. Hanni’s intense take on
garage rock laced with California dreaming qualities proved to be an explosive
mix of guitar driven songs and cunning lyrics. The once scattered floor crowd
had packed in to get a closer look and was certainly Instagramming by the end
of his set. After the rousing
performance people dashed upstairs to purchase his LP’s, shirts, pins and more
all of which is personally designed by Hanni. The band thoughtfully mingled
with smitten new fans and dropped hints of a headlining tour coming this fall. When the house lights went out for the final time, the sold
out crowd had filled the floor and bar to their capacity for the headliner The
Black Angels. Everything about their
setup from the gear to the video projection lighting reeked of the mind
altering bands of the late 1960’s. A tight band that traded instruments freely and jammed to a crowd mesmerized by the pulsating lights that
circled the stage. The vintage lighting had me glad I didn’t eat the brown
acid. The Black Angels transplanted their audience to another era and took them
on an audio/video journey through space and time. A throw back show in a 92
year old theater equates to just another typical killer night in the ever
thriving Seattle scene. **article & pictures provided by jen&juice**
If you're a music fan, then you've probably heard a little bit about the Nashville music scene. I live a couple hours south of the "Music City" and venture up there every chance I get because, well... It's Music City. Over the past 15+ years, I've seen some pretty amazing shows there. I'm talking about shit you look back on and think "I can't believe I saw that!". Front row of the The White Stripes playing at the Cannery ballroom? Check. Avett Brothers at the Ryman? Check. Americana Music Awards? Check. NYE bash on Broadway? Yup! Camping in freezing ass rain for tasty vinyl at Third Man Records? Been there. Langhorne Slim at the Hard Rock?... You get it.
Believe it or not, my entire Nashville experience and agenda changed for the better the first time I saw a show at Third Man Records. It was Natural Child and The Strange Boys. I had never listened to either band, but really wanted to check out the TMR Live venue. Natural Child came on and I was hooked instantly. I'd never heard this type music before. The best comparison I can give you for these guys is a modern day Rolling Stones with a touch of Merle Haggard. Strange Boys had a similar sound, but it was still completely their own. They hail from Texas. Natural Child are Nashville natives. When I returned home, it was mandatory that I find some tunes from Natural Child because I enjoyed their set so much. This led to me discovering Infinity Cat Recordings, Burger Records and Turbo Time. Being a vinyl nerd, these sites made me happier than a pig in shit. (and that's pretty happy. ask any pig)
Then it began. I started discovering more and more new bands through these labels and others. JEFF the Brotherhood, Pujol, D. Watusi, Diarrhea Planet, Cy Barkley, Turbo Fruits and several others. All these bands had a very unique sound that truly captivated me. It was a blues/rebel rock/garage punk/alt country sound. Aside from having this "sound" in common, all these bands also had another notable thing in common. Yeah, you guessed it. They are all from Nashville. This led to, of course, more shows and more vinyl. To date, I have managed to catch live shows from almost every "Nashville Band" on my "must see" list and have came to this consensus: There's something fucking awesome happening in Nashville right now. I'm talking about the caliber of movement we saw when grunge was born in Seattle, The Mississippi blues era, etc. Most recently, I attended "Freakin' Weekend" which totally lived up to it's name. I remember looking around at the crowd in the packed Exit/In on night two only to see Jack White and The Black Keys (all Nashvillians) just hanging out enjoying the show. Just a few more faces in the crowd. Folks who love music, just like the rest of us. I thought to myself, you know your'e at the right show when you have mega-star musicians in attendance. The entire weekend was simply amazing. My core group of friends and I spent a whole bunch of time with our jaws dropped. Every single band on the bill annihilated their set. There was no half-assed anything. This is what what you should expect from these Nashville bands. 100mph, balls to the wall, heart felt perfection. Plus a local, hospitable, friendly crowd that is just as enthusiastic as the bands they are there to support.
So, to wrap this up, you should definitely do some homework on this explosion from the Music City. It will be well worth your time. Below is some content I've managed to collect so that you can begin your journey. Lastly, if there are any other bands we should know about, leave a comment below or shoot us an email!
***We are NOT responsible for all the loot you're about to spend on vinyl records!**
We are Southern Tracks Media. We have provided top notch free press for artists and musicians for over ten years. Our staff has a great passion for the arts. STMpress feels that it's our duty to promote artists who should be in the spotlight.