Saturday, May 28, 2011

May 28, 2011

In keeping with our dismal spring, it looks like Folklife could be damp. Go anyway -- support local music! This week's picks:

14 Iced Bears
This sounds like a cookie order . . . or a crime scene in one of Jasper Fforde's Nursery Crime novels. For some reason, including the word "bear" in a title makes it automatically funny and awesome at the same time. Including one or more actual bears is not recommended.

Bad Mitten Orchestre
This looks cute on the page, and then you say it aloud and there's a whole new joke. It belongs to the same category of near-homophones as Square Pig in a Round Hole, so of course I'm going to choose it.

Because it is fun yet difficult to say, I was ready to believe this to be a Washington State place name. It isn't, but it should be.

The Ross Sea Party
Another entry in the "Do They Know Me?" category. Although my interest lies more with the Weddell Sea Party, in researching Ernest Shackleton and the ill-fated Endurance, I also learned about Aeneas Mackintosh and the perhaps more ill-fated Aurora. Polar explorers were nuts, but they left us amazing stories that you couldn't make up. I hope this "party" is more the fun kind and not the dying-of-scurvy kind.

Sea of Bees
A different kind of sea, one I wouldn't want to cross without the proper gear. Saying the name aloud evokes CBGB.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

May 21, 2011

Just bloggin' and waitin' for the Rapture, that peculiar center of grindhouse theology. (What they don't realize is May 21 isn't the end of the world -- it's just Storm Sound Cycle!)

But in case of Rapture, all my picks play tonight or already played last night.

Android Hero
Captured! by Robots
Warning: Danger
Danger, Will Robinson! These three bands are on one bill. I love it when they match! Thanks to R2-D2, I've loved robots since 1977. My current sci-fi project includes an endearing band of doo-wop singing bots. This was an easy pick.

Point Juncture, WA
Our state has an abundance of interesting place names, most of which could be band names. This is one I hadn't seen before in either context. This sounds like both a crossroads and the end of the road.

Goofy fantasy element + fun to say = awesome name.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

May 14, 2011

Friday the 13th fell on a Friday this month, but I came through it unscathed even without hiding under the bed. Who are the lucky bands this week?

French Horn Rebellion
Although the French horn has made a few appearances in rock & roll songs, it is not the first instrument that comes to mind when I think "rock band." In an orchestra, the horn section is kept separate from the brass section, as if to ward off the influence of that stereotypical seat of rebellion, or anyway, goofing off. Maybe there's something we don't know . . .

Gazebo of Destruction
This one belongs to the opposing images school of band names. "Gazebo" is refined, elegant, civilized. "Destruction" is everything but. It doesn't hurt that "gazebo" figures in a couple of running family jokes.

Keep of Kalessin
Do these guys know me? I am a fantasy writer because of Ursula LeGuin's Earthsea series, and Kalessin is my favorite dragon in all of literature. I will probably never write a dragon story because it couldn't possibly measure up. This was the easiest pick this week (and also a perfect badass name for a metal band).
Morton and the Saltines
This one takes the classic "X and the Ys" formula and draws humor from both the play on a brand name and the inclusion of ubiquitous, basic food products. It hints that saltines aren't as bland as we'd been led to believe.

Tom Baker Quartet
The name's not particularly creative, but the musicians are. I plan to catch this show, if only to solve the mystery of what TBQ is doing under "Rock and Pop." Always worth a listen, wherever they turn up.

Saturday, May 7, 2011

May 7, 2011

Four previous honorees -- Eighteen Individual Eyes, Ancient Warlocks, Ravenna Woods and Dog Shredder -- all had gigs last night, and I missed them all due to a previous engagement! I hope everybody had a rockin' night.

Less Than Equals
This one plays on words and numbers! It could describe a relationship, either personal or mathematical. And you could spell it <=. (No website, but Kurt Bloch is in it, so you know they're awesome). The mathiness makes it fit on a bill with:
Ocean of Algebra and Social Studies, which aren't on the same bill but should be. I hope they are more fun than 9th grade.

This one is just a joy to say. It is at once funny and heavy and gritty.

Wet Nightmare 
Speaking of 9th grade . . . This name conveys in two words all the wonder and horror of puberty.