In case you hadn’t heard — or read the interview here — Sunday’s Marco Benevento Trio show, originally scheduled for Parima, has been moved to Nectar’s. Why? Um … none of your business, that’s why. It just has, OK? But I’m sure it has nothing to do with Parima not having a liquor license at the moment — which, according to owner Daryl Campney, the Thai restaurant-best listening room in town could be without until the end of May, pending paying off the “proper authorities” and installing a new sprinkler system. Bummer.
Nectar’s of the Gods. Also, Boobies
Speaking of Nectar’s, they have a full weekend of local music on tap. Friday night, B-town rockers Workingman’s Army split a bill with Queen City ska-punk torchbearers Husbands AKA and rockers L.Dora, the last of whom offer this actual quote in their press blurb: “Boobies, yeah, boobies.” Well, OK, then.
The following night, local reggae rockers Pulse Prophets bring the warm island breezes. Their press kit makes no mention of breasts, per se, though they do promise to elevate your mind whilst shaking your behind. Fair enough.
Actually, digging deeper into their calendar, Nectar’s has live local music, served fresh daily, pretty much all month long. The legendary downtown juke joint has been leaning rather heavily on midweek residencies of late, but they are all of the local variety, including Wednesday jams with Bob Wagner, Ray Paczkowski and Russ Lawton exploring the outer limits of the organ trio.
Bluegrass Thursdays have been a hit, and this month feature local up-and-comers Something With Strings. On the other side of the weekend, Monday, local live electronica outfit The Electric Reason wrap up a weekly residency that began last month. And Tuesday, Burlington’s Radio Flyers of funk Funkwagon continue their run as Nectar’s de facto house band.
Employees Must Wash Hands. Thx, MGMT
The big news last week was undoubtedly Higher Ground announcing a slew of big-name summer shows … the day my friggin’ column comes out. Gee, thanks, guys! So, yeah, many of you may have already heard about MGMT (8/12) and Dark Star Orchestra (8/15) playing this year’s Lake Champlain Maritime Festival. Or Primus, Gogol Bordello and Heloise & the Savoir Faire at the CV Expo Midway Lawn on July 29. That goes double if you follow the #BTV hash tag on Twitter. In short — like, under 140 characters short — OMG. Tweeps wuz freakin. LOL. FU. Or something.
By the way, I posed this question on my blog, but the first person who can tell me the last time Gogol’s Eugene HÜtz (ex-The Fags) and the Savoir Faire’s Heloise Williams (ex-viperHouse) shared a stage wins … something. Seriously though, viperHouse and The Fags must have played together at some point during their respective tenures in the Queen City, right? Probably at Club Toast. We’ll get to the bottom of this, I swear.
In the hubbub over the MGMT announcement, you might have missed the news that next week, Friday, May 14, to be precise, the world’s foremost ABBA tribute band is playing at the Lebanon Opera House. Once you’ve had a moment to properly digest that not only do ABBA tribute bands exist but that there is a “world’s foremost” ABBA tribute band, consider this: They call themselves Bjorn Again. Regular readers know I’m usually loathe to say anything nice about tribute bands — ’cuz I’m a snob like that. But even I have to admit, that’s pretty funny.
Sad news from local whatever-grass outfit The Medicinals. The band’s show at Radio Bean this Friday will be their last. According to an email from guitarist Ben Werlin, dobro player Jeremy Sicely is leaving the group to join another hot local grass outfit, Gold Town, prompting the remainder of the quintet to call it quits. Happy trails.
A Little Rusty
Just thought I’d mention that while I’m writing this week’s admittedly scattershot — even for me — column, I’m listening to On a Full Moon Weekend, the latest from Rusty Belle. No, they aren’t technically local, though given that they play Montpelier almost monthly, you could be forgiven for thinking as much. The band actually hails from Amherst, Mass. However, sibling bandleaders Kate and Matt Lorenz were born and raised in rural VT, so they have that going for them, which is nice.
Anyway, the new record is a charming and artful little hodgepodge of musical styles. I’ll save the more academic discussion of the album’s merits for a proper review the next time they swing through — next month, maybe? But for now, I’ll say this: If I were in Montpelier this Saturday, there is nowhere in the capital city I’d rather be than Rusty Belle’s release party at Langdon Street Café. Well, maybe Charlie O’s, but only because it’s the greatest bar on the planet, so wanting to be there is sort of a given for me. Other than that, I’d be front and center at LSC. You should be, too.
The reason I won’t be in Montpelier on Saturday is because I’ll be in Burlington at The Skinny Pancake catching Maine’s South China and witnessing such a profound convergence of things I really dig that it may just tear a hole in the space-time continuum. Or at least my caffeine-addled brain. Allow me to explain.
South China is a husband-and-wife experimental folk duo from Biddeford, Maine. And they’re excellent. So excellent, in fact, that The Low Anthem — who I believe I’ve mentioned in these pages a time or two — have openly professed their admiration for the group. So there’s that. Now, here’s where it gets good.
South China were original members of Providence-based indie-folk “mini-orchestra” Brown Bird, with whom regular readers know I’m fairly infatuated — not quite on a Low Anthem level, but it’s close. And it gets even better.
Opening for South China is The Low Anthem’s Jocie Adams, who will play a set backed by a violinist. That’s right, opening, which should say quite a lot about the esteem with which The Low Anthem folks hold South China.
The only way this could possibly get better still is if the boys from MSR Presents had something lined up for the following night…
…which, of course, they do! (Warning: Don’t try that segue at home.)
My favorite local upstart concert promoters, MSR Presents, welcome Afro-pop-tinged electro indie ensemble Givers to The Monkey House in Winooski this Sunday, fresh from a stint touring with indie gods du jour Dirty Projectors. Local experimental rock outfit Maga opens.
Happy Mother’s Day
Last but not least, don’t forget that Mother’s Day is this Sunday. Love ya, Mom!