The other day I was taking my boys on their morning walk around the marshmallow ghetto. As usual I was wearing my headphones that were not broken and jamming out to good jams contained within my iPod. As I got to an intersection I stopped to avoid getting run over.
While waiting for the light to turn green I noticed a car containing two cute girls smirking at me. Immediately I smiled back thinking that the sun might have been reflecting on me making my appearance that much more stunning. They both started giggling and I immediately thought they were giggling at my dogs because they are pretty cute too. I turned to look at them and thank them for attracting cute girls for me and that is when I discovered what all the smirking and giggling was all about.
Sweet Lou was taking a sweet poo.
Anyways I wanted to apologize for the lack of posts within the last few days after almost overflowing the site earlier this week with reviews and whatnot. Don’t worry I still have tons of material to review but sometimes work gets the best of me.
Today though I was approached by my friend’s website Sexy Photo Trip (SPT) about helping them out. The site is 18+ so all you youngsters you need not know what they are all about.
So what is Sexy Photo Trip you ask?
Here is a video that can explain it:
Bascially SPT is according to their site:
We are 2 photographers and a make up artist, traveling the country documenting our travels and telling our stories. We shoot naked girls throughout all of this. They are very nice and very tight. We like girls who chew gum and walk with confidence.
We are road trippers, documentarians and voyeurs. We’re here to document a day in the life of interesting women willing to share intimate details of their life with us and to make very nice, very tight sexy photo shoots.
It’s not porn by any means, it’s art and it’s fun. Marcos and I made nice nice a few years back when I was a writer for a certain site I care not to talk about any more. We met up in Austin for an event and have remained friends since. He is one of the reasons I got a little more serious with the camera and he is also the reason I speak like Borat a lot.
Marcos asked me if I could help SPT with supplying music for future videos seeing on how I am exposed to a lot of bands these days. Of course I said yes. I am looking forward to working with SPT in the near future and hopefully one day can be in on of their videos being remixed as I scream at traffic.
If you are interested in photography of beautiful women with little or no clothing as well as witty smart humor head over to Sexy Photo Trip and see what happens when three friends travel around the country for the sole purpose of taking sexy photos. Nice.
Friday night in downtown Akron was one of those nights to remember for many thanks to The Avett Brothers. It was one of those nights that anyone who came to the show will think of for years to come with help from their amazing performance. Intimate at times as well as a full on rock show, everyone who had a ticket to that show left satisfied.
North Carolinian brothers Scott and Seth Avett once used to fill the quaint Kent Stage in Kent, OH but thanks to their success as a folk rock band they needed a bigger place to play. With help from the Kent Stage crew the boys left that smaller stage for the classy Akron Civic Theatre, a stage I think suited them perfectly.
Having no idea that there was even an opening act, I was thrilled when the curator of the Kent Stage announced that Samantha Crain & The Midnight Shivers were taking the stage. Having just recently been introduced to the country rock act I found myself even more excited to be at the show.
Samantha Crain and crew took the stage and received a warm welcome just after eight o’clock. After a few songs in it was clear that the crowd had accepted them into their ears, thanks to her unique singing style and country rock, and were cheering loudly after each song.
During one moment after a song Samantha Crain stated she missed a note and declared “everyone hits a wrong note” and continued on how she is hard on herself for doing so even though she knows it happens. The crowd all seemed to agree with what she said and not once did I hear any wrong notes played. Then again I only had heard a couple of songs prior to seeing her set live.
Samantha Crain admitted it was only the second show her and the band had played with The Avett Brothers and thanked them for the opportunity to share the stage. Admitting she came from a small town in Oklahoma she basically confessed to living the dream. Seeing her jump around excitedly on stage as she strummed her acoustic guitar just proved how excited she was to be up on that stage.
Shortly before the Avett’s took the stage, die-hard fans started screaming out “Happy Birthday Scott!” Clearly many of the fans knew that one of the members was celebrating their birthday in Akron that night.
With the curtains still drawn The Avett brothers along with Bob Crawford started their set off with “PGFA”. Everyone in the house went wild upon hearing the music begin and once the curtains were opened it was clear to everyone how great this band truly is. With an array of instruments behind the trio everyone’s attention was focused on the amazing folk-rock playing from the banjo, the stand up bass, and acoustic guitar as well as dual signing that had just begun. To add to the stage’s appeal there was a giant backdrop of a ship that resembled Scott Avett’s art.
While standing in literally the middle of the venue I felt that I had the best place to hangout at for the night while taking in all that The Avett Brothers dished out. Their songs, as my friend Seth said it best, gave me that feeling that many in the past had to have felt when the Beatles first started playing their music live. I was heavily sucked into each song they played and had a smile on my face that lasted pretty much until I got home that night and finally fell asleep.
Throughout the set Joe Kwon would join the trio and add cello to some of the songs. The brothers would share singing duties and seemed to swap out guitars during every song and at times even during some of the songs. It was really interesting to see Seth Avett swap guitars and narrowly miss continuing the song but he is a pro at what he does and there were no interruptions.
Playing through songs such as “Please Pardon Yourself”, “Die Die Die”, and “It Goes On & On” The Avett Brothers sounded as amazing as I thought they would. I missed many the opportunity to see this band live in the past and regretted it each time. Finally though I found myself at one of their live shows feeling privileged to be in their presence.
In between songs fans were screaming out requests to the stage in hopes that their favorite song would be performed spur of the moment but The Avett Brothers thanked them for their requests and continued on. Seeing them smile up on stage as they performed just proved how great of a time they were having as well. At one time a fan screamed that she loved them and Seth Avett responded “we love you too.” The band even played a new song from their upcoming album to be released in September.
That one new song the band played just made my night. It was titled “I & Love & You” off of their upcoming late summer release I & Love & You. With Scott Avett taking the drumming duties as well as signing out the I and love and you with his hand as the crowd sang along I found myself getting chills. It was a great feeling and a great love song.
After the band played “Skin & Bones” they exited the stage. Fans screamed and applauded the amazing performance while at the same time were still hungry for more. Luckily the Avett’s were not quite done yet and returned to the stage moments later with a couple of extra helpers, Kent’s very own folk star Jessica Lea Mayfield and her bearded brother David. It was the perfect end to an amazing evening.
The Avett Brother’s live show turned me into a bigger fan than I already was. I really think the live experience just intensified their talent. While leaving the historic Akron Civic Theatre I heard no complaints at all and everyone was just in a great mood. I do not think I have ever attended a show quite like the one I did on that warm Friday night. I can not wait till the next time these boys come back to a city near me. I know I will be there in a heartbeat.
The Avett Brothers Setlist (as taken from the band’s web forum):
Please Pardon Yourself
Die Die Die
Down With The Glistening Shine
Gift For Melody Ann
Song Of The Dying Sailor
It Goes On & On
I & Love & You
At The Beach
Murder In The City
Talk Of Indolence
Skin & Bones
Encore (with Jessica Lea & David Mayfield)
Will You Return
I was a zombie of sorts. Only having ingested some terrible Hardee’s in Bowling Green, KY, the arrow in my stomach was pointing to empty. Luckily my buddy Fatty who was driving owes me big for when we went to see the Bouncing Souls and make me turn my car around on Route 8 because he forgot his ticket.
I could not tell him that I forgot my ticket because I did not have one so I just asked him to stop at Taco Bell for a snack.
I did not have a ticket because someone wonderful got me on the list for Rancid complete with a VIP pass.
We arrived to the venue with the Riverboat Gamblers already playing. The Austin, TX punk rockers really enthralled me so I made sure to pick up their latest release on LP entitled Underneath The Owl. I have yet to listen to it but I do know they played a few songs off their new album and it sounded good. They are one of those bands I never really gave a chance before but will now thanks to their great performance.
Once it looked like the stage was set up for Rancid I headed backstage to get a better view of the band. I hung out behind the scenes and peered at the from the side. As pissed as I was that they were not headlining the show I was still pleased with their almost one hour set including classic songs such as “Ruby Soho” and “Olympia”. They also played some new tracks from their recent release Let The Dominoes Fall… such as “Last One To Die” and “New Orleans”.
They sounded really good live and jumped around youthfully as if they were playing 15 years ago. Many times I hear that people think Tim Armstrong might not be playing all of the songs but I was right there and it sure as hell looked like he was beating the crap out of his guitar playing to the huge crowd. Matt Freemon was hammering his bass and killed it during “Tenderloin” and of course Lars Frederickson was doing what he does best, entertain.
Great set by one of my favorite punk bands of all time.
Last One To Die
Journey to the End of the East Bay
Fall Back Down
The Way I Feel
East Bay Night
Rise Against took stage as the sun said goodbye to the day. I am a fan of the first three Rise Against albums but their last two releases have not done too much for me. I stayed afar from the stage and checked them out while I chatted with a couple of my friends who were only there to see Rancid.
Rise Against, I can say, has major stage charisma. Lead singer Tim McIlrath was running all over the stage singing his heart out to his diehard fans. Where the band did play a lot of newer songs I was happy to hear some older ones from their first three albums. I was shocked the band did not play “Swing Life Away” when Tim McIlrath came to stage with an acoustic guitar in hand but I guess they have played that song enough times and perhaps it was time for them to give it a rest.
It was great to see Rise Against headline a show and you knew the band was grateful for the oppertunity as they thanked Rancid as well as named off some of the venues in Cleveland they once played before such as the Agora as well as the Tower City parking lot by the stairs where years ago they were just an intro band to the Vans Warped Tour. Times have change indeed for Rise Against, I was just glad to hear them admit it.
It was a good night for punk rock in Cleveland thanks to the three bands that took over Tower City that night. As if the show itself was not good enough right as Rise Against was finishing up their set fireworks started going off over the Progressive Field as the Cleveland Indians game had just finished up.
I had yet to find a setlist for Rise Against or Riverboat Gamblers but when I do I will post it here.
Matt, Adam, and I all slept in a little longer than we wanted to. Needless to say I missed some artists I wanted to see like the Heartless Bastards and Allen Toussaint. I guess when you stay up till almost 5am sleeping in is expected.
We actually made it to the day lot without getting searched or even stuck in a traffic jam. It was nice for once to actually get there not pissed off.
One of the highlights of my weekend was sharing the stage with the sorrowful folk singer William Elliot Whitmore. During his set he decided to invite the fans to come a little closer and join him on stage. I took the opportunity and actually snuck into the back end of the tent where I got to watch the backside of William Elliot Whitmore and also all the fans who were glued to him.
One thing I like about William Elliot Whitmore is how personal he is. In between the songs he would run around and shake hands and give out hi-fives. He’s a friendly fellow who, with his guitar and banjo, is a one man show telling tales of what he sees from his eyes. His voice is haunting yet so appealing. His set was one of my favorites of the weekend.
Adam and I walked around a lot again on Saturday and the ever so smart Matt purchased a folding chair at Wal Mart in the morning and took it into Centeroo. He did his thing, we did ours, and later we would meet back up with him before the Boss took stage.
Throughout the day I was entertained by some artists I knew and others who I had not had the pleasure of hearing before. One of the new bands to my ears was grassroots heavy The Del McCoury Band. I really got a kick out of their material but had to cut it short so I could see Ms. Jenny Lewis.
While trying to see Jenny Lewis I managed to make way into a sectioned off side stage area where others were already viewing her set. As I was looking for the best place to see Jenny Lewis I noticed a certain someone checking out her set. Elvis Costello. Pretty damn cool.
After Jenny Lewis played we checked out Wilco, a band I really need to see live in their entirity. Every time Wilco plays a festival I seem to skip their set to see someone else. I enjoyed the couple songs I heard them play but really wanted to see Elvis Costello play.
Elvis Costello once again just blew my mind during his set. I saw Elvis Costello perform at the 2006 Bonnaroo so I knew what I was in for. I was pleasantly thrilled to see both Allen Toussaint as well as Jenny Lewis both join Elvis Costello on stage separately during the set. I was kind of figuring it would happen since both artists have worked with Elvis Costello but still when it happens live in front of you, you can not help but get excited.
Seeing how this was my first Bruce Springsteen experience Matt was quick to tell me what to expect. Bruce Springsteen and the E-Street band were everything I thought they were going to be. Where as I am not a huge fan of The Boss, I have enough appreciation for him and his band to watch the entire set and thanks to the live performance am looking to listen to look last the hit songs and dig deep into his catalog. Matt had taken off get a closer look and later told me he made it about fifteen rows back from the main stage. Good for him. I don’t think I could have done it myself.
Nine Inch Nails was awesome as I expected. I was pissed because I felt NIN deserved the What Stage, the main stage of the event. Instead they played the Which Stage which to me was not big enough for NIN. Playing through a mix of songs they shocked me most by busting out “Burn”. That song alone won me over for their set list. Sadly this performance by NIN is slated to be their last US performance for who knows how long… Glad I was there to witness it.
NIN sounded awesome as usual and as soon as MGMT and Moe took their respectful stages some of the douchbaggery cleared out. That made things much better for us as I am pretty sure the three of us were the only folk who were not retarded on substances.
Once NIN finished up and we got back to our hotel it was almost 4am. I stayed up till 6am writing the above review and managed to get a couple hours of shut eye.
Today is of course the last day of the event. We plan on getting there in time to check out Dillenger Escape Plan as well as come other artists. Once Coheed & Cambria finish their set we are done with the ‘Roo. I have absolutely so desire to see Phish close the festival with their hippie material.
This has been one hell of a trip so far and I am really looking forward to the final day to this outstanding festival. Time to head to the farm now, but first we need to stop at Tennessee / Alabama Fireworks for some souvenirs that might be illegal in Ohio.
It was a memorable punk rock event Thursday night at the Grog Shop thanks to The Bouncing Souls, The Loved Ones, and Black President. The three bands actually had just performed to a packed the house the night before as the bands made a two night stop at the well known Cleveland venue. Having not been able to attend both shows I am glad I was at least able to be at one seeing how great of an evening I had.
New Jersey’s The Bouncing Souls have taken this entire year to celebrate being a punk rock band for 20 years. To commemorate their success the band has been releasing a song a month for download available on their own label’s website Chunksaah Records for the entire 2009 year. The band also will be releasing a limited edition 7″ every third month of the year available online, at select music shops, and of course at their live shows. If that was not good enough for a festivity, the band decided to hit the road on a string of tours to select cities. Accompanying The Bouncing Souls were friends The Loved Ones and punk rock super group Black President.
The venue filled up quickly and featured all sorts of fans, many who were at the previous night’s show. Punk rockers of all ages hung out in the dark venue waiting for what was to come. I joked to my friends how old I felt seeing that I saw The Bouncing Souls open for NOFX in 1998. Still I refused to let age affect me and was excited to be a part of the evening as I had been looking forward to this show for weeks.
Black President started off the evening and pretty much set the mood for the rest of the evening with their energy. Formed in 2005 well before Barack Obama because his quest, a lot of ticket holders thought that the band name was created after the fact of our current president. The band consisting of some pretty important punk rockers like Charlie Paulson of Goldfinger and Dave Raun of Lagwagon did not get the full credit they deserved by all who attended from the start but the crowd seemed to warm up to them. I myself was enthralled the moment the band broke into a Motorhead cover of “Iron Fist” and then announced it was their first time playing the song live. Blasting through selected songs from their self titled debut release including “Last F#cking Hope” the band won me over and much of the crowd as well.
The Loved Ones, hailing from Philadelphia, may not have been around for twenty years but they took stage and played their hearts out to the welcoming crowd. This Fat Wreck Chords act has been a favorite of mine for a couple of years now so it was great to finally see them play the stage. Playing songs from their recent EP Distractions as well as former releases Build & Burn and Keep Your Heart, including the catchy song “The Bridge”, the band sounded solid and looked to be having a great time performing to the near sold out crowd.
Before The Bouncing Souls even took stage fans were screaming the trademark Bouncing Souls soccer chant “Ole” jointly. The moment the Bouncing Souls took stage and started playing the temperature rose a good ten degrees in the venue from all the movement in the crowd. With arms in the air, and some legs too, the fans were truly going ballistic for the main act of the evening.
Greg Attonito and crew were all smiles as they ripped through show starter “True Believer”. Classic tracks such as “That Song”, Here We Go”, Lean On Sheena”, and “I Like Your Mom” continued the set with almost all the fans singing along to. At times the lead singer looked more of a lounge act as he slowly graced the stage to the left and right and just seemed so at peace with the environment surrounding him.
Towards the middle of the set Greg Attonito grabbed an acoustic guitar and played a very chill version of the Misfits‘ “Hybrid Moments” which brought grins to the faces of all the real punk rockers in the crowd. I sang along with everyone else and for a brief moment felt like a kid all over again.
I was not at a Bouncing Souls show that night, I was at a Bouncing Souls celebration for them being a punk act for 20 years. Having been a fan of them for most of those 20 year I felt so fortunate to be a part of the festivities and enjoyed every moment of the evening. Openers Black President were a treat to see live as were The Loved Ones making for an ultimate night of punk rock fun.
I managed to take a couple of photos that night at the show but the Grog Shop has terrible lighting and I do not use a flash out of repsect for the artists performing. Here are a couple that came out that looked ok in black & white. I would have gotten closer for some shots but the pits for all three performance were pretty insane and I love my camera too much to risk damage to it.
(ok, I’m not going to lie…these pics SUCK. Better luck next time I guess…)
Here is a video of the acoustic version of “Hybrid Moments” taken from another venue: