Friday, July 12, 2024

Baseball Project LIVE (R.E.M./Dream Syndicate) /KISS in the Billions Club /Symphonic Cypress Hill? (VIDEO)


Hello, friends. In this installment of "This Year's Week" (I'm still working on that title), I begin with The Baseball Project. You haven't stumbled onto the wrong channel, folks. The Baseball Project is a band featuring some very famous members: Peter Buck and Mike Mills of R.E.M. In addition Buck & Mills, the band also features Steve Wynn (The Dream Syndicate), Scott McCaughey (Young Fresh Fellows, Minus Five) and Linda Pitmon (Zuzu's Petals, Filthy Friends). The indie rock "supergroup" performed at The Waiting Room in Omaha.

It was such a trip seeing two members of R.E.M. playing inside this little club. I associate that band with massive stadium and arena shows. It was cool to see them just having fun with some friends.

There was a little bit of sad news in the world of The Replacements, as Paul Westerberg's mother, Mary, passed away. Additionally, Laurie Lindeen, former wife of Paul and mother of his son, John, died at roughly the same time. Lindeen is probably best known for being a member of the band Zuzu's Petals.

It's not all sad news in Replacements world. Chris Mars announced he is doing a limited vinyl run of his most recent record, The Average Album. Prior to this, it has only been available digitally. Get more info at Chris's website: https://www.chrismarspublishing.com/

After a quick update on "the girls" -- Neko and Blackie -- I have a sneak peek of a video I've been working on from a new series I mentioned a few videos back.

All this and more in just under 13 minutes. Hard to beat.

Wednesday, July 10, 2024

X (The Band) LIVE 2024 Final Tour Review / John Doe, Exene Cervenka, Billy Zoom, D.J. Bonebrake (VIDEO)


Legendary Los Angeles punk rock band, X, embarked on its final tour this week. The 'Smoke & Fiction'  tour rolled into Omaha on July 7, 2024. I made it a point to hit the show. X has always been a great live band; and unique among its peers, X still has all original members in the band. Few others can make such a claim.

The Omaha show was the second stop on the tour, so everyone was still in great spirits and health. Things can change after a few weeks on the road! 

This video is mostly just clips of the band playing live at Waiting Room in Omaha. They played pretty much everything you'd want to hear: Los Angeles, White Girl, The Unheard Music, The Hungry Wolf, and so much more. There was even a segment where drummer D.J. Bonebrake played a xylophone and one of the roadies played drums in his place! It was wild.

Thanks to John Doe, Exene Cervenka, Billy Zoom, and D.J. Bonebrake for all the music and memories.

Monday, July 01, 2024

Dark Stuff: Roger Daltrey, KISS, Inhaler, Bikini Kill, Buffalo Tom, Laura Jane Grace & MORE (VIDEO)


Today's video is a bit of a wrap-up of all things Dark Stuff from the last week -- it's This Year's Week! I'll work on that...

We begin with a trip to Memorial Park in Omaha to see the legendary vocalist from The Who, Roger Daltrey. The free show was sponsored by the City of Omaha and featured post-show fireworks for Independence Day. Opening band, Inhaler, featured the son of U2 frontman, Bono. This meant that, in Omaha, we celebrate our independence with artists from UK and Ireland.

This week marks the anniversary of the original KISS lineup (Ace, Gene, Peter, Paul) reuniting for its first show. June 28, 1996 at Tiger Stadium in Detroit Rock City. I was there! And every year, I celebrate accordingly.

Hey, have you subscribed to my other channel, Rock N Roll Book Club, yet? You really should. On the next episode, we are discussing "Rebel Girl" by Kathleen Hanna. Been listening to a ton of Bikini Kill lately. Can't wait to talk about this book!

Picked up a couple of things on a recent trip to Homer's, but I'm still waiting for my copy of Buffalo Tom's newest, Jump Rope, to arrive.

I caught the pilot episode of Orphan Black: Echoes starring Krysten Ritter. I really liked the original Orphan Black with Tatiana Maslany. This new "version" of the story seems decent. But I'll probably give it a few more episodes before deciding if it's something I plan to discuss on the channel.

Lastly, I have brought back The Dark Stuff playlist! I wasn't sure that anyone cared, so I stopped doing them and deleted most of the old ones. Then I found out that people actually do listen to those. Okay, message received.

Thursday, June 27, 2024

REVIEW: Cloud Nothings LIVE at Reverb Lounge // Live Music //Punk Rock // Indie / Idle Ray (VIDEO)


This week, I'm reviewing a recent show from punk rock trio, Cloud Nothings. The Cleveland band hit Reverb Lounge in Omaha as part of its Final Summer Tour.

I missed the first band, Tender Grease, but arrived just in time for the second, Idle Ray. This Michigan four piece indie band was good, despite the goofy eye make-up. I liked them so much I wanted to buy their record. But after hitting the vacant merch table three times, I had to bail. Maybe next time.

Cloud Nothings were exactly what you'd want from a punk band. The songs were loud, fast, and catchy.

Monday, June 24, 2024

ANGRY COMMENTS! + New Music from Paul McCartney + King Hannah // There's Two Sham 69s?? (VIDEO)


Been a wild few days, friends. My first venture outside my comfort zone - a video defense of Star Wars' The Acolyte - brought out the crazies. I've only had limited experience with trolls and whackjobs in the comments, so this was new for me. Some people get awfully upset, and I made a montage of some of the best, along with some responses from me. 

I had an experience the other night that I'm sure some of you have also had. You show up to a club to see an older band, and you realize that there are now two (or more) different versions of the same band. One may have more "original" members than the other; and sometimes, there are no originals at all. 

Two days ago, my friend and I went out to see 1970s UK punk rockers, Sham 69, when they played here in Omaha. It was a four band bill, and we arrived shortly before the headliner was scheduled to go on. However, we were a bit thrown when the guys coming on stage looked nothing like any picture I'd ever seen of Sham 69. Turns out, there are TWO Sham 69s! Who knew?

Couple of great albums to tell you about. One from King Hannah, and the other from a guy you might have heard of, Paul McCartney. He used to be in some band in the 60s.

Lastly, I'm looking for suggestions for a name to a series I am starting. I'm going to revisit some television and movies from my youth in an attempt to see if any of it still resonates with me today. So, it's retro, it's reviewing, it's revisiting...you see, I need help with a name. Suggestions please in the comments.

Saturday, June 22, 2024

Why All the Hate for The Acolyte??!! Feels Like Star Wars To Me! (VIDEO)


In today's video, I'm jumping out of my comfort zone as far as content on the channel. I'm, going to be discussing the newest entry into the world of Star Wars...The Acolyte. As a long time Star Wars fan, I give every one of the live action series a chance. I go in with an open mind.

If you look at Twitter or (most of) YouTube, it would appear that nearly everyone hates The Acolyte. It seems strange. Why so much hate? Is the show really that bad? In a word...no.

Sure, haters gonna hate. That is to be expected. But, in my opinion, most of the criticism of the show has been gratuitous. There do seem to be some people out there rooting for this show to fail. Look, if it sucked, I would say so. But it doesn't suck.

Before I explain why this show is so essential to the understanding of Star Wars, I give you a little glimpse into my past. I was there in '77, folks. I'm an OG. And to this OG, The Acolyte seems like Star Wars.

Tuesday, June 18, 2024

YouTube Frustration!! Channel Updates and News


This week's video is a bit of an explanation of what you can look forward to in the future of The Dark Stuff

About a month ago, I was watching a video from The Long Cut, and it kind of hit home with me. The basic idea of his video was that he was going to be opening up his channel to different topics that were not exclusively vinyl or music. I have long wanted to do the same thing, but was worried about alienating subscribers with different (unrelated) content.

The longer I have been on YouTube, the more I have come to the realization that nothing stays the same. These days, most of the views on my videos are not from subscribers. This is hardly uncommon. Most people watch my videos based on the specific subject matter, the thumbnail, the title, or whatever -- not simply because they are subscribed. Those who like what I do will return, those who don't...won't. 

To quote the great Sammy Davis Jr, "I've Gotta Be Me." Things are going to change over here at the Dark Stuff. The casual viewer may not even notice, but for those who...I welcome your feedback and hope you stay along for the ride.

Friday, June 14, 2024

Rock N Roll Book Club Episode 9 - "Trouble Boys: The True Story of The Replacements" (VIDEO)


For episode 9, your co-hosts Dave, Jen, and Shelley drink up and spit out “Trouble Boys: The True Story of the Replacements,” written by Bob Mehr. Why use a crass metaphor for discussing a book? Because that’s the way The Replacements would want it.

If you’re not familiar with the band, you must know this: They love to drink, they don’t give a sh!t about rules or respect, and they’re one of the best bands to come out of Minneapolis…and maybe the 1980s as a whole. Talented enough to be famous but too punk to make it happen, they were indie rock before indie rock existed. If you haven’t heard them, click that playlist link below.

Here’s what to expect in the episode: 

* Dave catches us up on the history of The Replacements, rivals of Kiss to win the title of “Dave’s Favorite Band.”

* Rivalries: Did R.E.M. even know they had one?

* Fun and games ensue: 
-- “Dead, Jail, or Janitor?”, the Replacements version of “F, Marry, Kill.”
-- Rank the Replacements
-- One word to describe each member
-- The Lion and the Lamb 
-- Who’s the Survivor?

* The gang attempts to answer difficult (and not-so-difficult) questions: 
-- Alcohol: Part of the band or part of the problem?
-- Commercial success: Could The Replacements even deal?!
-- Everyone gets canned: Whose firing was the harshest?

* Shelley needs a minute…for herself

* Jen gives out the first Patty Hearst Award™

Thursday, June 06, 2024

Cloud Nothings and Idle Ray at Reverb, Omaha, NE 6/4/24 (PHOTOS)

Cleveland, Ohio punk rockers, Cloud Nothings, returned to Omaha on Tuesday, June 4 for a show at Reverb. This was the second or third time I have seen the band. The band's newest LP, Final Summer, was released in April.
 
Drummer Jason Gerycz rocked out with a minimal kit

Cloud Nothings

The opening band was Idle Ray. I really liked the band, especially the guitar playing from Fred Thomas.

Friday, May 31, 2024

Ranking the Albums: BUFFALO TOM (VIDEO)


Fans of Alternative Music from the 1990s no doubt have some fond memories of the band, Buffalo Tom. They were the quintessential "college rock" band; and the albums 'Let Me Come Over' and 'Big Red Letter Day' were a big part of the soundtrack of the "Alternative Nation" (R.I.P.) and the '120 Minutes' eras. 

Buffalo Tom emerged from the same Boston/Northeast US music scene that brought the world Dinosaur Jr., Pixies, The Lemonheads, Throwing Muses, The Lemonheads, and many others. While BT may not have had the mainstream success of some their peers, the band's 90s albums rank among the era's best. It's not possible to discuss the best 90s music without throwing in singles like "Soda Jerk," "Taillights Fade" or "Velvet Roof."

At the band's commercial peak, Buffalo Tom's music was on numerous TV and movie soundtracks, most notably in 'My So Called Life.' However, this band was much more than background music to television shows about angsty teens. 

Over the course of their nearly 40 year career, Buffalo Tom has made some of the most compelling, guitar rock of any era. Though the group's output has slowed down quite a bit, BT has just released their 10th album, Jump Rope, and will be touring this Summer ('24). 

Buffalo Tom's current line-up is the exactly the same as when they started back in 1986:
Bill Janovitz, guitar/vocals
Chris Colbourn, bass/vocals
Tom Maginnis, drums

Buffalo Tom will be appearing at the Outlandia Festival along with The Flaming Lips, Dinosaur Jr., The Head and the Heart, and many more.

Tuesday, May 14, 2024

LIVE CONCERT REVIEWS May 2024: Ty Segall / Jason Isbell / Steel Panther / Sun June / Wild Pink 🤘🏻🤘🏻 (VIDEO)


It's been a minute since I had any concert reviews on the channel. Glad to report that I have not been slacking on that front, folks. I'm back with some footage and photos from four recent concerts.

First up is Ty Segall. This was my first time seeing him since 2016. While this wasn't the loudest concert I've ever seen (that would be Mercury Rev on the side stage of Lollapalooza in 1993), it was maybe the 2nd or 3rd loudest. The roadies warned us, but I didn't listen. Opening for Ty Segall was a band called Sharpie Smile. They remined me a bit of Sparks. The bassist looked familiar to me, and I realized it was because she toured with Kate Bollinger last year, and I saw her open for Liz Phair

Also caught Jason Isbell and the 400 Unit at The Astro. Due to weather, the show had to be moved indoors at the last minute. I was absolutely fine with that, as I was sitting in one of the boxes for the show. Incredible seats. Isbell's opener, Jobi Riccio, was also very good.

Hair metal parody act, Steel Panther, tested the limits of my tolerance for a return to the 1980s. Look, I'm glad I was a teenager back then, but I am also quite glad it's no longer the 80s. This was fun for about 20 minutes.

Austin, TX indie rockers Sun June played a fantastic show at Reverb along with a New York band called Wild Pink who were also quite impressive. It was really great to see Sun June in person, as their last two albums both made my Top 20 "Best of" list in their year of release. All of my faves were played at this show.

Thursday, May 09, 2024

Ty Segall / Sharpie Smile LIVE at Waiting Room, Omaha, 5/7/24 (PHOTOS)


 I caught Ty Segall the other night at The Waiting Room. My feeling the morning after is impossible to convey in words. But if I could, I WOULD BE SHOUTING! Shouting because I am practically deaf after seeing the show, and probably wouldn't be able to hear myself any other way.
We were warned by a roadie before the show just how loud it was going to be if you're standing in front. I appreciated - though quickly disregarded - the warning. This was one of the loudest shows I've ever been to, and that is no exaggeration. The band was amazing, however, and watching them up close was impressive.



After a few songs, I relocated to the back of the club to spare the remainder of my hearing. I loved the show. It was so much better than the last time I saw Segall - in 2016 - when the show was a drunken mess.
Opening the concert was Sharpie Smile. I had never heard of the band before, and missed the first 10-15 minutes of the set. They were an unusual indie band with an intriguing singer/drummer. I'd go see the band again if given the opportunity. Find out more about Sharpie Smile on their Instagram.

I'll have video of both bands on YouTube shortly.

R.I.P. Steve Albini (VIDEO)


Wow! Legendary record producer and punk rock luminary, Steve Albini, passed away today from an apparent heart attack. He was only 61 years old. Steve Albini is probably best known for producing albums for Nirvana, PJ Harvey, Pixies, Superchunk, The Jesus Lizard, and many more. He was also an influential artist who played in the bands Big Black, Rapeman, and Shellac. His impact on 80s and 90s music is immeasurable. He was a legend. 

R.I.P. Steve.

Wednesday, May 08, 2024

Too Soon To Name Best Album of 2024?? Here Are Four Early Contenders! (VIDEO)


I know it's only Spring, folks, but 2024 has already been a pretty epic year for new music -- and there's still more than half the year to go! Fully understanding where we are on the calendar, I have already found what I consider to be four strong possibilities for Best Album of 2024.

Baseball Project LIVE (R.E.M./Dream Syndicate) /KISS in the Billions Club /Symphonic Cypress Hill? (VIDEO)

Hello, friends. In this installment of "This Year's Week" (I'm still working on that title), I begin with The Baseball Pr...