Man or Astroman? Defcon 5

Man Or Astroman? 5, 4, 3, 2, 1
Man Or Astroman? 5, 4, 3, 2, 1
[New Music]

Man or Astroman? Defcon 5

5, 4, 3, 2, 1…

Communicating Vessels

Review by Kent Manthie


After TWELVE long years of absence, the space-surf-punk trio, Man or Astroman? Have finally reunited – at first it was to play a few reunion gigs and soon turned into a full-fledged comeback. The new album, with the original three members, Birdstuff, Coco and Star Crunch,
Defcon 5 is just out and it’s like they picked up right where they left off.

I remember back when I lived in Los Angeles for a brief time, in the first couple years of the 2000s, and, in 2001, I believe, it was (and I’ve been kicking myself ever since, for missing it), they played a show at a relatively small club around the downtown L.A. Area. It’s been awhile, but I am pretty sure that the club was The Smell, who, I recall, hosted some other great indie bands around that time and, if they’re still there, I’m sure they still do.

Just a couple weeks ago, I found out that these guys had a new album due out soon and I was so excited to hear about it that I contacted them instead of vice versa, which has been happening a lot lately (so much so that I have a big backlog)! To my delight, the manager or one of the label guys mailed me a promo, pre-release copy of Defcon 5. So, before it was even released publicly, I’d been listening to it over and over again for about two weeks (I think I got it about 3 weeks ago, actually). This is some really potent stuff. It’s almost like a concept album, albeit an irony-filled, glazed-eye concept: the album’s title: Defcon 5 (short, of course, for “Defense Condition #5”, a “national security”-type label, is part of a theme here, on the CD. The first cut is the title track; a nice, 3 minute instrumental, mind-altering opening theme that sets the tone for this mind-blowing album. It is a swirling, percussive romp with the clean guitar tone that is so well known to most as a “surf-rock” style. But this stuff goes way beyond the shore of earth. The next tune, “Antimatter Man” has the muddy, punk rock vocals, sung with like Tom Verlaine and in the attitude of one who is high on adrenaline and maybe a bit buzzed as well. The whole thing is in typical MOA fashion: a cross between Spacemen 3 (not Spiritualized, no – the original Spacemen 3 – the last time I listened to a Spiritualized CD I almost fell asleep!), the great Shadowy Men on a Shadowy Planet and Television.

MOA originally came out of the good ol’ South: Alabama, to be exact. But, they are part of a newer, more educated and diverse/diverging group of Southerners. Nowadays, when you think of “Southern Music” you don’t have to think of Lynyrd Skynyrd. There are plenty of bands who’ve already been around a while that have changed that paradigm a lot in the past 30+ years, especially from college town, Athens, GA, including the B-52s (which were a good band up until Ricky Wilson died), R.E.M. who were a great band when they made records for I.R.S. and went downhill fast after signing with Warner Bros. (Green was the last good album they made). Now, the new breed of Southern bands includes such unique enigmas such as of Montreal, an androgynous, experimental, neo-glam revival, led by front man and songwriter, Kevin Barnes.

Anyway, getting back to MOA and Defcon 5. As I was saying, the opening cut is also called “Defcon 5”. After that there are a few other tunes, and then song number 5 is called “Defcon 4”, then, three songs later, appears “Defcon 3”, then two more songs and “Defcon 2”, then one more tune (“New Cocoon”, followed by the final installment and finale, “Defcon 1”. That is what I meant by its quasi-concept aura: it starts out at the least “dangerous” defense condition and, gradually, moves, bit, by bit, up the ladder, until, at the end, all hell breaks loose and we reach the ultimate (nuclear war? Armageddon?): “Defcon 1”. Along the way to doomsday, though, we get taken on a hell of a ride! And some of that includes the interloping songs, such as “Antimatter Man”, “Disintegrate” “Communication Breakdown, Pt. 2” (and no, that is NOT a “sequel” to the Led Zeppelin song of the same name from their debut album -this is a completely unique “Communication Breakdown, Pt. 2” – and I haven’t heard “part one”, so I can’t compare. “Electric Arc” is also a very heady brew of a space-surf song. In fact, to put the two styles together – the edgy, space electronics and the groovy surf-guitar sounds, you could say that this is the perfect soundtrack for surfing on Mars – that is, when there was plenty of water on which to surf! Then, on “Defcon 2”, MOA do a really electronic-based but retaining that punk-edge to it – lots of pops and crackles as well as synthesizers with backing guitars and the booming bass and bombastic drumming. And, don’t forget “New Cocoon”, which is a slow, precise, technical rocker which is followed by the albums grand finale, the very surf-y “Defcon 1” – on which it sounds like the world is going to go out with a bang that is riding a slick wave of apocalypse. It is both supersonic in its intensity and the symbiosis between its surf-genre riding the wave of the electronics embedded inside.

This is a lovely ride, from start to finish and the more I listen to it, the more I love it. It’s just so great to know that these innovative workhorses have returned to give their fans as well as a new generation a taste of the great stuff they’re known for. It’s also great to know that Man or Astroman? has worked with the great Steve Albini, late, of Big Black, Shellac as well as an uber-producer who shuns all the music-media’s hosannas due to, as he said, once, in an interview, years ago, that when newer, less established bands read in magazines that Steve Albini is this “rock god” who’s making all these great and, as a result, fabulously famous albums with bands who get a lot of press and notoriety, including a few such as the Pixies, Nirvana (on In Utero), The Breeders, Joan of Arc and even the awesome, aforementioned (and MIA) Shadowy Men on a Shadowy Planet (Sport Fishing). Albini has shunned all these accolades and “important guy” label for the simple reason, he said, because newer, lesser known bands are the ones that he wants to work with most and if these guys read all this showering praise on him in the once-great-but-now-irrelevant SPIN Magazine or the ridiculously over Rolling Stone, they get scared off and shy away from even asking for his help and this is exactly what he doesn’t want those types of bands to do – he wants to work with and help develop new and interesting bands, not only work with established bands that guarantee record sales and profit,etc. This is something that has made me respect the man all that much more, besides his raw talent and energy and ability to tweak a few knobs here and there, add a beat here, take away a little something there and end up with a great-sounding album at the end of it all. Albini lent his help to MOA while they went to Chicago. They also worked with old pal, Daniel Farris in their home of Birmingham, AL. So far, of the albums I’ve reviewed so far this year, I’ve mentioned in at least two, that they’d make my “Best of 2013” list of CDs that came out this year and Defcon 5 is another one that I will definitely add to that list! Welcome back Man or Astroman? please! It’s been 12 years in the making, but now that the wait is over – it turns out that it’s been well-worth waiting for! -KM.

Nihilistic Devil or Misunderstood Genius?

[New Books]

The Luminous Memories of Alexander Vile

The Luminous Memories of Alexander Vile [as a Kindle Edition]
The Luminous Memories of Alexander Vile [as a Kindle Edition]

A new novella by author Natasha Jones, available for $4.95 on Amazon

Reviewed by Kent Manthie

In the short story, The Luminous Memories of Alexander Vile, Natasha Jones has, with a pen, painted a wonderfully interesting portrait of a man who takes in a young orphan, not a newborn, mind you, but a somewhere around prepubescent girl who he decides to take on as his female protege.

Written from the point of view of Alexander Vile’s long standing maid, the unnamed woman who has been in the house for a long time and who knows the man better than anyone, has, as Ms. Jones has had her do, put together a collection of journal entries, poetry, letters and the odd paragraph here and there by the maid herself, when there is something to clear up or an opinion to be rendered, et cetera and also at the very beginning, when she (the maid), writes an introductory paragraph to introduce readers to this man, Alexander Vile. It doesn’t give a full description of the man or his story, but does pose some rhetorical questions for the reader to keep in mind and, as for Vile’s character, which is an apt name for the man, who can, to an unmet stranger or to average passerby, it turns out, come off as “vile” indeed. But, the maid writes, at the start of it all: “ He was no hero for ‘simpletons’ but he was mine.”

Alexander has fallen into this caricature of the reclusive ogre for whom society at large is not all that agreeable since having lost his beloved Luciana in an unnamed, undescribed “accident” some time (years, it must be) beforehand. This loss, it turns out, has taken out all the joy of life, all that kept him going and made things seem worth doing, life worth living to him. Since he is too vain a type to commit suicide, he has thus remained in his manor in London, composing grand music, which is a vocation for him as well as painting, writing poetry and, of course, keeping a steadfast journal, wherein he commits to paper all of his inner thoughts, activities and idle questions. These entries are a main part of Ms. Jones’s story. Instead of writing the usual narrative story, where the protagonist gives the accounting of events or an omniscient, unnamed narrator (the author herself or a minor character in the story) does so. Well, does, basically, follow the latter way, although, the maid, who is the character through whose eyes we take in the tale, does so, not in a straight narrative, but by way of introduction as well as a few paragraphs throughout, to tie things together in a way. But, other than that, The Maid, whom I suppose, is all one can call her, since she goes unnamed throughout, presents the story in an unusual sense: by collating a number of Alexander’s journal entries, some of the poems that he includes in them, along with numerous letter to and from Joanna, the young protoge.

After a bit of getting accustomed to the house and the man in it, Joanna is tutored by Vile, given piano lessons and is given a good deal to read, including books by such writers as Oscar Wilde, Elizabeth Gaskill, Jane Austen, the Bronte Sisters and others; pretty soon Joanna is devouring as much as she can, as well as going to school now, to get a proper education, which also gives the normally solipsistic Alexander, time for solitude.

It’s when Joanna meets Vincent Valentine that things begin to change and all involved start a metamorphosis. The two fall madly in love with each other, go out together often and eventually, they decide to get married. During all of this, Alexander isn’t quite sure what to make of the feelings he is having about this. Is it jealousy? Is it pride? Is he afraid of being left alone again?

Then there is the matter of Vincent’s brother, Christian, who, after meeting Alexander at a dinner party Vile throws at his manor, where the whole Valentine family is invited, Vincent, his parents and his brother, Christian. It is here on that night, when he first meets Alexander that Christian sees through the man in a way, it seems, that no one in his family cannot – or will not(?) At the end of that evening, it only ends in a semi-friendly bit of verbal sparring that Vile writes in a later entry, he kept things from getting ugly for fear of offending the other guests and that, if he’d wanted to he could’ve done much harm, verbally at least, to young Christian.

Then comes the wedding, a day on which everything seems perfect – the weather, the smiling faces at the ceremony, even Alexander has had his hair trimmed and fixed to look its best that day, dressed fabulously and the two stars, the bride and groom are stunning as well. It all seems to be going great – the wedding is just about to commence, in fact has started and the groom has come, taken his place at the outside, makeshift “altar”, awaiting his beloved bride, Joanna, who, when about to walk down the aisle, suddenly scans the audience and notices that Alexander is no longer there, which, for some reason, really makes her crazy and she suddenly runs away from it all, back to where she assumes he’s gone – back to his house, where upon finally getting there, she looks about and finally finds him half dead with an overdose of Laudanum (tincture of morphine, a popular, onetime over the counter pain remedy, popular, of course, in Victorian times, even through the first part of the 20th Century). Alexander has been overcome with his feelings, which he must have realized was real love for this, now-beautiful young woman and when he had seen her about to be taken away by Vincent, it proved to be too much for him, so he gets up and rushes back to his home and intends on taking his life. But when Joanna gets there, she is in time to help revive him (plus I don’t think he had taken enough to prove fatal anyway). But that seems to end the wedding plans for her.

Days later she receives a letter from Vincent, sad but perplexed at why she should’ve run off like that, right in the middle of their wedding. He writes in his missive if they can make plans anew to wed, writing Joanna that he still loves her and wants to be with her forever, if she’ll have him.

At this point the story starts to fracture a little. A new character, previously unmentioned, Clarissa, is brought in, so to speak, in the form of a few letters that Joanna has written to her. The first one is where we, the reader, learn of what transpired at the wedding and how Clarissa’s dislike of Alexander is misplaced, that she has not understood him the way she, Joanna does.

She writes a couple other letters to her and soon the maid jumps in again and tells us that after this, Joanna had changed quite a bit, that she started to become an angry young woman, temperamental in disposition and that she is not any longer the carefree young girl she once was. And just as Vincent’s brother had deduced, Alexander is really a kind of Dr. Frankenstein – taking a malleable young mind and warping it sufficiently to his twisted views on humanity. Ever since losing the one love of his life, his sweet Luciana, he has turned into a nihilistic monster who hates the world and only goes through the motions at living in it; during his morning walks, his occasional dining out or wandering about in search of whatever it may be. His towering intellect plus ego and his misanthropy have conspired to take his revenge on a cruel, cardboard world and Joanna is that instrument of vengeance.

By the end of the story several twists and turns have come up that will either reinforce what you may already have suspected or else will surprise others.

I’m not going to spoil things by revealing the ending here. Suffice it so say, though, Natasha Jones has made this an innovative way to tell a story. For all her “offstage” sensibility, the maid is the one who is telling this story and at times it even gets away that it is her, even though, most of the things we read come from the journal of Alexander Vile, letters to and from Joanna and even letters from Vincent Valentine. It’s a bit jagged, the way it’s presented, at least in the beginning, but when you get used to how things are set, you will get into the meat of the story a lot easier – sometimes, it even takes a few false starts to get yourself going. At 49 pages, it is just the right length: it’s not embellished so much as to make it into a longer novel nor is it abbreviated too much, leaving out some great details.

-KM 

Country music to help you get over Country music

The Beaumonts Where Do You Want It
The Beaumonts Where Do You Want It

The Beaumonts

Where Do You Want It

from Saustex Media, 2013
Review by Kent Manthie

On this second of CDs by a quintet from Lubbock, Texas’s, The Beaumonts, entitled Where Do You Want It we get a follow-up from their debut as The Beaumonts “continue to right the wrongs of the recent musical past…” (from the promo bio sheet).

The Beaumonts are a curiosity, indeed.  Before I hit “play” on my CD player I thought for sure that I was going to have a disc that I could rip on, since I’ve had so many CDs that have been from “mediocre-OK” to “WOW” that I haven’t, so far, anyway, received any really shitty music.  I guess that comes from a bit of self-selection, receiving music from a few labels that have great rosters of bands which, for the most part, are pleasing.  And the other thing is that I’ve gotten a lot of DIY homemade super lo fi stuff that is the epitome of cognitive dissonance, with a lot of “bent circuitry, homemade noise devices and well…just about everything but the kitchen sink.  Since I know that it’s such an easy target – too easy to just dismiss and say it’s nothing but noise and (sounding like someone’s old dad) “my five-year old kid could do better…” (you hear that a lot with so-called “modern art”-to me art’s art:  ars gratia artis.  You know.

But, I digress…when I listened to the first cut on Where Do You Want It, “I Like Drinking”, I was laughing my ass off – “I like to drink/I like dance/I like to get high”  – that being the chorus.  Then, the second cut, “I Like Women” was equally humorous.  Then there’s the laugh-out-loud “(If You Don’t) Love the Lord” which is a scream – “If you don’t love the lord, you’re fuckin’ fucked…” (2x) and then “If you don’t love the lord you’re fuckin’ fucked, just like a whore…” – goddamn that is funny!!!

At first glance The Beaumonts seem like a total Country & Western band and, well, maybe they are, in a twisted, crazy-funny way, but they are unlike any country outfit I’ve heard – especially the corn-syrup crap that you hear when you are stuck somewhere where they’re playing a country radio station or album, etc., like a convenience store/gas station or whatever… you stand in line and this awful, twangy, rhythm-impaired white-bread bumpkin junk with the dumbest lyrics you could ever think of (or worse, depends on your imagination) splatter over the rest of it and if you don’t get out of there soon you start feeling nauseated and want to vomit.

At least the Beaumonts aren’t so syrupy and have some damn funny lyrics to boot.  It’s hard to tell if they’re a total parody or if they really are country but want to present their twisted sense of humor and off-the-wall way of looking at life in this format.  Of course, the setting is just perfect – and Country Music is essential for the lyrics, the style as well as the mise en scene.

Where Do You Want It is just screamingly funny – funny in a way that the hardcore/punk band FEAR’s debut, The Record was.  I just can’t imagine how crazy a live show would be by The Beaumonts.  Whatever you do, though, make sure you get familiar with them and check out this album.  It will put Country in a whole new light for you (though, all these Country idiot right-wing nuts who sing about how great living in America is and what a great guy George W. Bush is and all this stupid propaganda that Dick Cheney just laughs his head off over when he’s alone at home.

Well – it’s funny, they are talented, they do play well and they keep a mean beat.  So, take it from me, who was pleasantly surprised that this album was such a hoot.  It’ll be more popular with the young ‘uns who dig Johnny Cash, Rev. Horton Heat and whose parents were into ZZ Top.  Take it from me – the craziest shit just pops up in the craziest places!  -KM.

 

The (#2) Churchwood wants your soul

Churchwood 2 album cover

Churchwood Churchwood 2

Saustex Media

Reviewed by Kent Manthie

 

Churchwood is back, this time with a new full length album, simply entitled Churchwood 2. This Austin, TX band is a wild bunch of snake-eyed rhythm devils. Those who remember their debut album and were wowed by it will be delighted to revel in this one.

Their music falls somewhere in between Rev. Horton Heat, Captain Beefheart, a Texas-style Nick Cave as well as The Cramps. Yes, that is quite a diverse crossbreed, but when you hear it, you’ll find it’s an apt description. The 10 songs on 2 are each a treat to listen to. The guitars are slick, sinister and intricate as well. It’s a well-produced album too – not a murky sounding, homemade sound, but a clean, well-lit album. The one thing about Churchwood is that singer, Joe Doerr has a singing voice that sounds a lot like Tom Waits with a Texas drawl and since Waits is nothing short of a musical god, that is high praise.

Churchwood or, rather the parts that make up the sum have been around quite a while. Singer Joe Doerr has been around for some time – first in the early 80s as Kid LeRoi in the Texas “roots”-music band, The LeRoi Brothers. After that, Doerr and guitarist Bill Anderson first met up in another Austin-based band, Ballad Shambles which soon changed into Hand of Glory, which was praised by music press as being “a diverse & exciting quartet…A Strikingly potent band – mixing up cowboy rock, blues, Doorsy atmospherics and more with confidence and creativity” Hand of Glory’s two albums on Skyclad Records are, being out of print and practically impossible to get unless you get lucky at a used record store or on Amazon.com – you never know what you can come across there, what with the giant network of independent record stores all over the US, Canada and UK too, somewhat collectible to the connoisseur. The band broke up in 1992, just as their prescient grunge-style, laid-back rough & tumble music was getting a new life, with other influences such as Husker Du, The Melvins and early Meat Puppets as that fad called “Grunge” that eventually pretty much ruined the word “alternative” and turned it into just another commercial, corporate commodity.

It wasn’t that long before Anderson came back to his roots – the blues, his original inspiration before branching out into a dada-esque painting of influences and styles. Anderson was, as he said, listening to Captain Beefheart a lot at the time and that’s one thing that got him going again. And when he was thinking of “getting the band back together” as the saying goes, he thought, once more, as Joe Doerr – his perfect vocal complement. Next thing you know, they were tinkering around and soon found drummer and ex-bassist Julien Peterson; they found Adam Kahan to play the bass Peterson had abandoned and second guitarist Billysteve Korpi and with that a raucous powerhouse had been rounded out and worked up.

They weren’t just a lonely band without a home long: soon their musical stylings caught the attention of Saustex – a label also in Austin, TX, who released their self-titled debut, as well as a vinyl 7 inch a year or so later. Their music reached further than they even expected – not only did their stuff resonate with indie music lovers who were (and many times are) starving for more, better and new stuff. Even the suits in L.A. somehow found them out and next thing you know, the song from their debut, “Rimbaud Didley” shows up on the F/X hit cult series, Sons of Anarchy, two seasons ago. So you know that when your music ends up being part of a soundtrack to an episode of a hit show with a loyal, intense following, you can finally smile and say “whew” – but there’s a fine line between licensing your music to a show or movie and letting your material be pimped out for a commercial (there’s an excellent song by Primus, from their Green Naugahyde album a couple years ago that deals with that situation perfectly – HOINFORDAMAN). Never, ever, ever give any company or ad agency permission or license to use any of your music for an ad. That is just shameless and there’s no excuse for “ho-in’ for the man – the advertising man…”

To acquaint you out there with a few tunes to whet your appetites – Well, the opening cut, “Duende” is a romp, one that gets your toes tapping and puts you in the right mindset. “The Devil in Me” is a sexual innuendo that shows that the nasty is naughty and the naughty feels right. “You Be The Mountain (I’ll Be Mohammed)” has this wah-wah guitar that is reminiscent of the soundtrack to Shaft, other 70s soul/rock but breaks into a rockin’ chorus. Speaking as I did of Primus before, this tune here is one that uses the eclectic instrumentation that Primus uses, but without the latter’s harder-edged qualities. “You be the mountain/I’ll be Mohammed/Come to me” is the mantra of the tune. Then, on “Money Shot Man” has a very different texture than “You Be the Mountain”, starting out with a slowed down mellowness, then kicking up some dirt and gravel and back and forth.

All in all, this album 2 is an excellent indication that Churchwood aren’t just a two-horse band, but that they have a barn-load of eccentricities to unload on what should be a good-sized fan base and in time turn them into the “cult” band that always has a devoted set of fans who are going to spread the gospel of the Church(wood) to the many. Although lots won’t “get it” – but who needs ’em anyway, right? Just as long as these cats keep true to what I’m hearing now and on the last couple releases (both the debut CD and the 7″ vinyl EP). If you think that “indie” is getting stale -well, for one thing, you aren’t looking very hard – but also, Churchwood can fill any hole or void you’re trying to saturate. -KM

Tex-Mex Garage Rock Supreme!

The Copper Gamins

Los Ninos de CobreCopper Gamins CD cover

Saustex Media, 2012

Reviewed by Kent Manthie

The Copper Gamins are keeping things going with their new CD, Los Ninos de Cobre. It is a follow up to their debut EP from last year (2012). They bring an authenticity with their love of the blues and they take their blues-lovin’ sounds to a primitive place where few bands dare to tread. When I put in this CD in the player and hit play I was blown away by the kickass lo-fi/garage-rock atmosphere of it. The first two tunes – “All Hid” and “Oh Well Well” are two examples of this beery, laconic garage band that evokes pictures in your mind of being in a smallish-sized club in a hip city somewhere – like Austin, L.A., or New Orleans – maybe Chicago; a dark and seedy bar with a big enough stage for a band to make some hellish rock on. That is the core essence of The Copper Gamins.

Actually, what really gets me is the vibrato that goes into the guitar and complements the southern version of Television, for example. These guys really blew my mind. I first read their bio and then thought I knew them, but, I must say that listening to the CD did much more for me in terms of learning about them than reading any bio. It’s a matter of feeling the vibes of the bitchin’ slide guitar, the cool vibrato strumming, the matter-of-fact, sunglass-wearin’ singing that counts the most. Like most art you can’t appreciate it for real until you actually experience it firsthand and more than just listening to them on CD, I’d love to see them play live and since I live in San Diego, the perfect place around here to see them would be the Casbah – they have the perfect dark, ungentrified and perfectly imperfect set up for them to shine. It reads that they take a lot of influence from the blues – old, American black blues and it may be true – they do, but they take that influence and twist & turn it into something that is truly their own. Once in a while, when they hit an emotional note, I’m reminded a bit of Tom Waits at his bluesiest, beeriest moments. In fact, that would be a good comparison right there: a cross between Howlin’ Wolf and Tom Waits. The perfect garage band for the 21st century. Here’s hoping they’ll be around in the same great form for some time to come and that they’ll hop over to this border town (San Diego) soon!

The Gamins hail from small mining towns Metepec and Zinacantepec (just outside of Mexico City). They take inspiration from traditional, Southern, black blues that goes back to the inter-war period, deep in the bowels of Dixie. After their eponymous debut EP, recorded in an abandoned building in Mexico City, the band struck out around town in search of gigs but were not welcomed many places. Undaunted, the duo kept at it and persevered. Soon they found themselves on the northern side of the border, playing gigs in San Antonio and Austin, TX. Their constant live shows and hard work on stage won them a fan base in the southern part of the Lone Star State. Next thing you know, they’re playing at SXSW, the yearly showcase of new bands that’s built up, up, up from a modest new-artist showcase to a new-artist showcase that is packed with all sorts of corporate scum oozing around, trying to pimp out the “next big thing” for the parasite major labels for whom they work. But, of course, the ones who take the bait and sell-out like that at least “weed out” the wheat from the chaff and the “wheat” usually goes on to continue to keep on making great music and if they’re lucky, they may get signed to an indie label or meet up with an influential indie who can steer them in the right direction.

Well, for The Copper Gamins, after playing SXSW in 2012, they were signed by Saustex and the rest, as they say, is history. Since the promising debut EP last year, the Gamins have been driven by J Carmen, who’s been honing his songwriting skills and producing some great stuff, as can be seen on this album. For those going to this year’s SXSW, look for The Copper Gamins again, to show up and play a set to more and more people who still haven’t caught on quite yet.

Hard to pick out examples – All have that lo-fi, blues-rock with a Latino tinge to it, but just to give you a few examples: the sexy romp of “Silver Monkey”, the wicked “Angelitos Negros” (Black Angels), the bop-bop-bop-ing around of “Tell My Sister” as well as the howling, plaintive “Hold My Name”.

These guys are really groovy and since they’re just getting started, I say – keep an eye on them, for they definitely still have some of their best stuff yet to come out.

For more information on them and/or to purchase Los Ninos de Cobre, go to saustex.com, where you can always see everything Saustex has available as well.

Keep on rocking – KM.