Wednesday, October 27, 2010

TVD Takeover Week | Diego Garcia

It's Day #3 with our guest for the week, Diego Garcia:

The Education of Diego | Part 3:
“Lolita, My Soul, and Mr. Walker”

Before moving on, I feel a need to address the second Elefant album The Black Magic Show.

I have a hard time going back on this one, given the simple reason, “I simply was not there.”

Listening back to that record I hear someone else.

A product of late nights, neon signs, reckless abandon, and loneliness…

The innocence was gone.

My heart was on empty.

And the recording reflects this…

Just check out the video shot to the lead single “Lolita” which was shot in NYC at the legendary Chelsea Hotel.

I want to stress that I am in no way knocking the album.

It was what it was: an honest extension of my life at that time. More importantly, of where the band was at that time.

I am very proud of it for that reason.

Now, imagine reliving this record every night on stage?

I was out of my mind…

In fact, I broke my foot touring the album. More specifically, I fractured my “soul” which in retrospect was the ultimate sign:

I had to heal my heart to survive

In other words, I had to get my girl back.

So if our whole generation’s mission is to kill the cliché, then I'm a dead man. And I will proudly take romance to the grave…

It was time to go solo.

To start over.

It was time to write a record that only my story could tell and that sounded like nothing else…

I'll leave you with one of the greatest songs on love/life before picking up again tomorrow.



TVD Live Tease | Yeah Gates' Spooktacular

Arlington, VA indie label Yeah Gates is bringing a decidedly non-spooky trifecta of bands to the Black Cat this coming Sunday night—America Hearts, The Cheniers, and Foul Swoops—on the spookiest night of the year: Halloween.

Sunday's 'Spooktacular' is also the 7" release party for the Hearts and Swoops, so we wanted to be certain this show is in your bag of treats for the weekend.

We've got all three bands with us for the balance of the week sharing some truly nightmarish and horrific stories from the road in a series we're calling "Creepshows." (Because I can't think of anything funnier.)

First up, the night's headliners, America Hearts:

Mark Cisneros | A Freegan House Show
We were a little freaked out upon arrival and perhaps even genuinely scared when they told us how the ingredients of the food we were in the middle of eating, was procured. The show turned into a mini-Burning Man of sorts. Body piercings, dancing and lots of skin and sweat. Like a crusty-punk Woodstock, complete with bare, muddy feet. All in the living room. The same living room in which we had to sleep later that night. Great food and homemade booze though.

Justin Moyer | Tough Times?
In 2002, I played a show in Cheb, Czech Republic. Cheb is the 'Wild West' of Czech. It belonged to Germany until WWII. After the armistice, it was given to the Soviets, and everyone who could fled. Those who remained were not exactly an economic elite. We played in what's best described as a Czech roadhouse.

Inside, there was no P.A. We sang and ran drum machines through our guitar amps. We played with a punk band that did goose steps and Heil-Hitler salutes. We couldn't figure out whether this was ironic.

The promoter had just gotten released from Czech prison. He had served 7 years for possession of marijuana. We stayed at his house after the show and he grabbed our keyboardist and tried to pull his pants down. Luckily, he was handsome.

Jess Matthews | Southern Scales
There was a really weird house show in Little Rock. It was the middle of the week and everyone at the party was wearing 80s glam rock face paint. The house had pet tarantulas in a tank, but some of the shells the spiders had shed were lying around looking like fully formed or crushed spiders.

Beforehand, we went to a nearby drive through beer distributor. It was a small, dingy building and it was hard to get the van around the corner to the drive up window. When we got to the window there was just a long set of fingernails coming out of a hand that was wrapping on the counter. We waited and waited. We asked for PBR, but the nails didn’t respond. When the woman finally appeared in the window she said, “I’m sorry. You know, I was just here looking at men on the Internet again.”

Mike Tasevoli | Nightmare on U Street
I can't think of any gig-related spookiness, but last year I was having a re-occurring nightmare about being trapped in the Velvet Lounge for eternity.

TVD First Date | Angie Mattson

"As we drive past the bayous and bays of the south, a lot of good tunes come to mind, as well as inspiration for new ones. Despite the fact I am on the road as I write this, my vinyl collection amasses. At the moment we are whizzing through Pensacola. Thrift stores along the way carry these priceless discs of black for less than $1, and the gum chewing, child-rearing clerks have no clue what they are parting with. They take my money and recognize me for the garbage collector that I am. I tuck them away in the truck, behind amplifiers and guitar cases, under boxes of merchandise and next to notebooks of lyrics and songs ideas. They hide there in the dark corners chatting with each other about gear and venues and chord changes. When I get home in a couple weeks we will all move into my studio apartment, and they will share a room with the other songs resting in their cardboard sleeping bags.

Just crossed into Alabama. The sound and feel of vinyl can't be beat. If a new record that I want is available in vinyl, I will buy that first. My parents had a fantastic collection of records that traveled from our living room, to the basement, to my apartment, my car, storage units, and back to my apartment over the course of my life. I still use stolen milk crates to display them, but plans are in the works. The house in the clouds that I am currently building has 500 ft. high shelves with electric lifts and a 100-album record changer. There are a million speakers like mutant fly eyes around the rooms, and they sparkle in the night when the music plays. Galactic mobiles orbiting my crib.

The sun is getting big and low now, and it’s harder to drive west. I used to work at a record store that was slowly phasing out cassettes, it’s interesting how long it takes small towns to catch on to new technology, but why hurry? The music is the same and the technology always changes. That record store is now closed. We are passing a peaceful swampy river in Mississippi. Makes me want to buy a flat bottom fishing boat and an old radio to spend the day with. The sound of radio is right up there with vinyl for me. I will unapologetically say that right now most of the music on commercial radio is empty. It’s bleached and it’s bleaching me. I am a girl about interesting sounds and lyrics, about music that is living. Music with bones and bacteria, and fungus. Music that breathes and grows with you.

Welcome to Louisiana. Besides the sound of the vinyl it’s the size. A 12" record is a piece of music meat. But I can't take it fishing or on the road, it's music for the home, for getting intimate. We just arrived in New Orleans, our destination for the evening. When it comes down to it, vinyl, CD, cassette, radio, mp3, I just love the music and the song and the voice, the medium is just the pan it’s heated up in."
—Angie Mattson

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