Thursday, October 28, 2010

TVD Takeover Week | Diego Garcia

Our visit with Diego Garcia (and his record collection) continues this Thursday:

The Education of Diego | Part 4:
“The Sound, Sandro, and the Cello”

Back to Matisse:

“You must, when the time comes, change course, search for something new.“

So for the last four years I’ve been following my instincts in search for a new sound.

A sound that could properly deliver my message on love, or I should say the malady of love.

A sound only my story could tell.

Minor keys, cello, nylon guitars, light drums, and wooden tambourines would help create an environment for me to whisper the words into her ear…

“You will always live inside my heart in memories long after we’re apart.
Even when my days are long and dark, you will always live inside my heart.”

So with each new song, came a little healing, until eventually I started feeling “better.”

The irony is that as soon as I accepted closure, my heart opened up and the sound was born…

I was ready to love again.

A few records that helped along the way:

Sandro “Yo Te Amo”
He passed away earlier this year while we where in the studio. It made everything a bit more real…

Serge Gainsbourg “Le Poinconeur Des Lilas”

Leonardo Favio “Fuiste Mia Un Verano”


You've attended them. You've been witness to musical meltdowns and horrific evenings. Yet, from the audience, you've been just a spectator.

The bands playing Yeah Gates' 'Spooktacular' on Sunday night at the Black Cat—America Hearts, The Cheniers, and Foul Swoops—have their own frightening tales to tell. Of their own on-stage nightmares. The shows that went hideously wrong. The gigs they'd never, ever want to relive.

These are their stories.

Today, it's The Cheniers' nightmares:

David Malitz | My old band played a show in Baltimore at a place called Charm City Art Space. The performance area is in this low-ceiling basement and it was all musty and dusty. The first song we played was one that I sang and I go up to the microphone and get shocked. Not a little zap, but a serious fucking SHOCK. I jumped back, approached again with trepidation. Same result.

I'm an idiot when it comes to technical stuff—every time my amp makes a crackling sound I'm convinced it's blown a tube, even though I barely know what a tube is—so I didn't know that the problem was that I wasn't "grounded" or some bullshit.

So for the entire song I keep thinking, "Oh, maybe it will get better" only to be stung each time. This happened about 10 times. We "grounded" everything after that but the next time one of my songs came up in the setlist I was too scared to go up to the microphone, like a mouse that gets shocked trying to eat a piece of cheese and eventually backs off.

John Masters | We decided to make a pit stop at a certain "gentlemen's club" in Atlanta after a Stamen & Pistils show back in 2007. The friend we were staying with spent a little too much time in the champagne room and insisted on driving us home on the freeway. He started passing out at the wheel and we swerved entirely off the road numerous times as we all screamed in terror.

Once we convinced him to let one of us drive, we got him back home to the apartment where we were all staying. He sat in a chair drunkenly mumbling and made me laugh, and that's when he quickly changed demeanor. "Is this guy making fun of me?" he asked everyone. "I'm gonna kick his ass." Aware of the fact the guy was about 15 times the size of skinny indie rock frame, I fled to my cot until he passed out—needless to say I didn't sleep well that night.

Ben Vivari | The scariest shows are always the first shows, right? An old band I was in, our first gig was at the probably-now-closed Vault in Baltimore. We were barely a band - we had two guitars, drums, no bass ... and we had never even heard of the other bands we were playing with, and outside of a few friends knew hardly anyone in the crowd. In the end we got through it with no major disasters but it was a stupid environment to play our first show and probably was the scariest - though far from worst - show we ever played.

TVD's Obscure Alternatives

It's our Thursday flashback, culled from the rare and (ultra) obscure crates of 80’s vinyl, curated by our pal Gil:

The Flex - From The Vacuum
The Flex was an alternative indie rock band with three core members. They were founded and operated out of Chicago, IL. The group enlisted session assistance from seven other members, who supported on saxophone, guitars, and vocals.

Overall, the band sticks with the alternative rock formula that was very prevalent during the mid 80’s with such bands as Husker Du, The Replacements, The Pixies, and many more. There are times where The Flex trio push the boundaries and create a roaring hybrid of punk pop, which ended up becoming a popular off shoot genre in its own right. With song titles such as "Drunken Aerobics," one can see that they have their creativity genes intact.

The Flex spent a few years traversing the Chicago alternative underground scene and never reached the critical acclaim as their mainstream compatriots, however they didn’t feel the need to conform either. Thus you get a thirteen song album of uncompromising music that hasn’t lost any integrity or creative control due to major label meddling.

This lone album was recorded at The Pits in Rockford and independently released on Sonic Dinner Music. Check out the crawling excellence of "Sleeping Boys" in the song selection below.

The Flex - Sleeping Boys (Mp3)
The Flex - China Dolls (Mp3)
The Flex - Dschungle World (Mp3)

For more obscure and unknown titles, check out Vinyl Obscurity.