Saturday, September 26, 2015

September 26, 2015

This week had an auspicious beginning, with a Dead Bars show on Sunday night. This was a release show; everybody, buy this record -- it has my brother's picture on the cover! Always great to hear Dead Bars, and I was also pleased to finally catch previous Square Pig honorees Bottlenose Koffins and Terman Shanks, as well as Lindseys. Now I'm looking ahead to next weekend and the Macefield Music Festival. But there are a lot of bands playing before that, including these five:

Acres of Space
Although this is more likely to refer to a luxury apartment, I like to imagine the futility of measuring the universe as if it were tracts of land.

Dead Leaf Echo
Perfect for autumn. If a leaf falls in the forest, does it make a sound, and does the sound have reverb? (A quick listen answers "yes.")

DK Stewart's Pocket Change 
I'm actually not sure whether this is a band name or the name of DK Stewart's show. I like it either way for a number of reasons: there's the retro vibe of something most of us use less and less these days; "pocket change" easily correlates to "beer money," which is about all the average gigging musician can expect from a show; and it could also be the casual but perfect material an accomplished bluesman might pull out and toss to an audience in the course of a night.
Hot Flash Heat Wave
Is it too much information to say this is something I know all about? Ironic that the band seems to be made up of a bunch of young guys, rather than middle-aged women.

The end of the world's slowest chess game.

Sunday, September 20, 2015

September 20, 2015

This week's Square Pig was delayed by a quick road trip to Cheney to deliver one of the resident young people to school, and also by a shattering change to my process.This blog has its roots in my old practice of perusing the club listings in the Friday Seattle Times and reading the band names aloud at the dinner table. To this habit, I added the step of circling with pencil the names I wanted to write about. When we stopped subscribing to the print edition and went online only, I collected band names by going to the online print replica and printing out only the club listings, so I could continue my analog method of marking names with pencil. The print was small and poor quality, but good enough for my purposes. Until this week -- they changed their viewer so that the print on those pages is larger but distorted and unreadable. This forced me, after 5 years, to convert to an entirely digital process of copy and paste. It's not as warm and satisfying to me as the writer as marking the names in pencil, but I suspect the experience for the reader will be exactly the same. Enough backstory and exposition! Here are this week's picks:

I like this as a generic name for any oversized stadium. A quick listen convinces me that this duo could produce enough sound to fill such a place, too.

The Oregon Trailers
I like how this could refer to the history of westward expansion, or to contemporary drivers hauling loads in our neighboring state. When my kids were little, we played Oregon Trail A LOT, so it's not surprising this would jump out at me. To this day, family conversations are peppered with references to things learned, both practical and ridiculous. A 2008 visit to the Oregon Trail museum in Baker City, OR was one of the most successful educational stops we ever made on a road trip.
What you might say when you're in the kitchen with small children and drop something heavy on your foot. Not as satisfying as real expletives, but better than nothing. I like the rural twang, too.

Sister Crayon
This could have been me! My given name, Karen, doesn't lend itself readily to nicknames. "Crayon" was the closest I had as a child. It was bestowed by my older siblings, and probably not used all that often, but enough that it was a long time before I could associate my name with anything but childish things. At least they were colorful!

Turquoise Jeep
Speaking of colorful things, utilitarian objects deserve bright colors, too.

Saturday, September 12, 2015

September 12, 2015

For someone with a low tolerance for busy-ness, I'm involved with an alarming number of committees and projects. It would be easy to stop blogging for a while, except how could I not blog in a week that offers band names like these?!

Crater Lakes
I like the plural, which denotes the phenomenon rather than the specific place. One of the resident young adults used to be a preschooler fascinated by volcanoes. His parents got an education, and now anything to do with vulcanism carries a whiff of nostalgia.

Ghost Soda
The bubbles are haunted!

A Place to Bury Strangers
It's been a while since I got to celebrate a longish-phrase name. Depending on context, this one can be taken as either hospitable -- a corner of the cemetery set aside to give a respectful burial to sojourners who die in our midst -- or sinister -- no one makes it out alive.

Taken by Canadians
Because of the non-threatening reputation of Canadians, this is funny no matter how you interpret "taken". Kidnapped? Scammed? Entranced? Just for the names, I'd like to see them on a bill with past honorees Abducted by Sharks.

Tonight We Fight 
Complete sentence in three words and it rhymes. Bonus points for implied confidence in the outcome.

Saturday, September 5, 2015

September 5, 2015

Everyone at Bumbershoot must be thanking the local weather deities that the big windstorm was last weekend. By contrast, today looks to be about perfect for an outdoor festival, if you go in for that sort of thing. I'm staying in to celebrate some good news about my novel manuscript, as well as these clever and intriguing band names:

A Flourishing Scourge
What a beautiful internal rhyme, coupled with the conflicting images of growth and life next to pain and punishment.

Kid Cadaver
Here's another playful joining of like sounds with conflicting imagery: bouncy, innocent fun set up against death laid out for clinical dissection.

EarDr.umz the Metrognome
Because of an accident of text-wrapping, I was initially drawn to this by the second half -- like a garden gnome, but more urban, and able to keep a beat. The spelling and punctuation of the first part open up a rich array of possibilities, from the obvious eardrums to ear drums to a doctor of ears named Umz.

The Moon Is Flat
Because it's actually a giant beach ball, and it needs to be pumped up.

Another nice rhyme, and a reminder that sometimes we are privileged to see the moon by day.