Life has been running rampant again, but at least it seems like it’s going somewhere for a while.
The benefit is this Saturday, and I am stoked about the quality of bands that are going to be playing. It’s going to be mad fun. The guys from Piel Plastica will be coming in from Chicago, and we’re putting them up. In honor of that event, we got new furniture.
OK, it wasn’t exactly in honor of that; our couch and loveseat have gotten a lot of mileage over the past ten years. The cushions had been flipped to hide threadbare spots long ago, and they were nearing the flipping point on the top layer as well. Countless people have surfed those couches, and the summer that TFN had a broken ankle we lived on them – her on the couch, me on the loveseat, feet draped over the arm. It was time to bring in furniture reinforcements.
We went to Ikea for the new pieces, and ended up with a red corduroy couch and loveseat. We were a little nervous that, when placed on our yellow walls, our living room would look even more like Romper Room, but the effect is actually very soothing and warm. After making two trips home from Ikea – they wanted $100 for delivery – with furniture hanging out the back of the wagon in a torrential downpour (they were wrapped in plastic and weathered the trip well), they have taken up residence. They have made it through the first night of vegging in front of the television – for the season premiere of Hell’s Kitchen, no less.
I am soooo glad that show is back on the air, even if it looks like this season’s cast is all really young. They don’t play well together, but it’s nice to see Chef Ramsay busting their heads. He made some people cry, which led me to use a literal “If you can’t take the heat” reference, but actually had Chef Ramsay tell the guy (who, at 48, is actually the veteran in the cast of kitchen folks who are mostly in their 20’s) to “Stop fucking crying!” Late he told the same guy, "Sir, do you mind just wiping the snot off your fucking face before we serve chicken and snot?" He’s eloquent. And a ball breaker. He rules.
I don’t like much Reality TV (although I am an enabler, having been an avid fan of the first two seasons of Survivor), but I am a sucker for the cooking ones.
But that’s enough about reality TV - back to reality.
Some other home improvements have been happening. The bathroom floor is tiled and the basement is tiled (moving me toward that ultimate dream of the basement bar), and furnished in perfect basement style with the beat up couch and loveseat that once populated our living room.
We’ve also been to a lot of shows as of late. Some have been awesome, some have been not so much. Some of the standouts that I have seen and you should check out, though, are Aqueduct, The Nekromantix, The Heart Attacks and Black Rebel Motorcycle Club.
That’s a fun part of working on my other site, but it can also be a pain. I know I’ve got no right to complain about all the shows I see for free, but I do like to have some evenings free, and when I go to these shows, I have a notebook in hand, where I frantically scribble notes, set lists, impressions and quotes. Sometimes I leave feeling like I missed some of the show.
TFN has it even worse, shooting some of the shows, wading into the crowds at the front of the stage, elbowing drunk punks out of the way to get shots, getting shoved around because she’s affording more protection to her camera than her physical self. It can be rough, but she’s damn good at it.
Sometimes, though, it’s nice to go to a show to see it, and not to cover it. Which is the case with Bob Mould.
Bob Mould is legendary. At one time he was the frontman for the West Coast hardcore band Husker Du (who are incidentally booming through my earbuds right now) and then he went solo. His songs are sweet and heartfelt. When we saw him at SXSW, which is where TFN’s photo is from, she actually had tears in her eyes. He’s an amazing performer.
When we found out he’s putting in an appearance at The Henry Ford, we made a decision. Rather than going to cover and shoot the show, we bought tickets and are going as fans. We’re going on a date, and we’re going to watch and stomp and cheer and sing along.
He’s amazing, check out this song:
Even with the physical rigors of shooting a show, it’s a tough decision for TFN to make. Some bands we choose to cover because she likes the opportunity and challenge of shooting them. Some bands, like one of my current favorites Valient Thorr are so energetic on stage that they afford an amazing opportunity for photos every time, like at SXSW when Wayne Kramer of the MC5 got on stage with them (that’s also a show that TFN hadn’t planned on shooting, but had her camera just in case). We ended up being the only publication with photos of the event, and the band has a video of it, which actually has TFN in the front, hoisting her camera.
Video evidence (That's her, front and center, camera in the air, 1:56 into the video, or at 1:02 on the countdown, depending on how it displays):
And here's one of the resulting photos: