Thick Shakes are out on a short tour right now, but before they left they shimmied out a new single. “Polyommatus Blues” can’t decide if it should smolder with restraint or cut loose like it’s got sparklers in its pants. It does both. Throw a quick organ solo in the middle and you’ve got another in a long line of classic Thick Shakes over-modulated garage rock nuggets. Snag it while they’re on the road and get it name-your-price style.
Oh, and they’re shooting a video for this tune? Daykamp Music TV just got twitchy…
“I Said So” is another over-modulated garage rock nugget from Thick Shakes. Boston’s Farfisa dirt royalty seem intent on motivating your right foot to pin the accelerator. The guitars, bass and drums wail away, but it’s the ascending/descending organ part that really puts this one over the top. Dig it.
What’s it going to take to get you into Thick Shakes? Theirliveshows are non-stop garage rock meltdowns. They released a cool 7″ on Aurora 7 Records last year. Would a limited edition cassingle featuring a pair of Farfisa-soaked, distortion-drenched ditties float your boat? You’re in luck. Thick Shakes have released an audio artifact that fits that description. French Dyppe opens with the driving “Friends Like These” before the hip shaking and head spinning take over during “Jaywalker.” No frills, just stripped down rock ‘n’ roll thrills. They even throw in the instrumental versions of the songs on the B-side.*
Oh, French Dyppe is also available as a digital download. You know, in case your cassette player is hanging out with your VCR and 8-Track player in some moldy old box down in the basement.
We’ve nearly reached the end of the road with the 2012 Rock ‘N’ Roll Rumble. After 31 sets from 23 bands, we’ve got it narrowed down to the final three contenders. Garvy J. And The Secret Pockets Of Hope And Resistance, Bow Thayer And Perfect Trainwreck and Motherboar (wildcard) will play for all the marbles tonight at TT’s. Before you head out, here are a couple of things that have tickled my brain about the Semifinal round.
Are You Experienced?
The Semifinal victors know a thing or two about winning over crowds in Boston. Garvy J. And The Secret Pocket Of Hope And Resistance and Bow Thayer And Perfect Trainwreck are both fronted by scene veterans and have top notch players on every instrument. That’s not to say they go about things the same way. Bow and Co. take a more traditional approach, twanging it up with the best of them. Any one of these guys is capable of stealing the show. Together, they’ve formed an outstanding Americana ensemble. The Resistance, on the other hand, has you wondering where the synth players are. Before long, you realize all three guitar players are masters at manipulating their instruments. Having the amazing rhythm section of Scott Fitts and Tommy Lada gives you that kind of freedom.
Lada Vs. Lada Revisted
Speaking of Tommy Lada, the battle of Lada Vs. Lada was won by Tommy Lada. I’d be lying if I said there wasn’t a small part of me that wanted to see Ghosts Of Jupiter take the wildcard just to see this happen again. It certainly wouldn’t have surprised anyone, as Ghosts Of Jupiter threw down another definitive slab of ’70s classic rock on their Semifinal night.
The State Of Heavy Revisted
In my last Rumble ramble I talked about wanting to see how the two heaviest bands in the festival competition fared in the Semifinals. Well, Motherboar fought their way into the wildcard spot through a shower of beer and metal mayhem. Sherman Burns continued to win over a slew of fans after another rifftacular performance. I love it.
Fun With Numbers
Five keys to success: 5 of the Rumble semifinalists included keyboard based instruments (Thick Shakes, The Rationales, Cask Mouse, Ghost Of Jupiter and Bow Thayer and Perfect Trainwreck).
A dozen golden throats: 12 different people sang lead on a song during the Semifinals.
Tie One On: There was 1 solitary tie worn in the Semifinal round. It was donned by Tim Scholl of Thick Shakes.
Play Me Out
Once again, I’ll leave you with the songs that haven’t left me. Have a listen and then hit up the Finals tonight at TT’s!
The Semifinals of the 2012 Rock ‘N’ Roll Rumble are in the books. Congratulations to Garvy J. And The Secret Pockets Of Hope And Resistance and Bow Thayer And Perfect Trainwreck for taking their nights. With Motherboar earning the wildcard spot, the Finals are set! After having to withdraw from competition before their prelim night, The Grownup Noise will get to play the Finals as the special guest band. Classy touch, Anngelle.
Finals / Friday, April 20
9:30 – Motherboar (Wildcard)
10:15 – Garvy J.
11:00 – Bow Thayer and Perfect Trainwreck
11:45 – The Grownup Noise (Guest)
Thick Shakes got Rumble Semifinal Night #1 started with a bang. This outfit is a garage rock firecracker ready to take off some fingers. Pop! The songs came rapid fire, drenched in Farfisa and fuzz. The remnants of “Go Back To New York” and “Banned From The Laundromat” are still ringing in my head….
After a much needed day of rest, the Rumble returns with Preliminary Night #4 (Cask Mouse, Never Got Caught, Parlour Bells and The Fagettes) tonight at TT’s. Before I head out, here are a few thought on the first half of the week…
It was great to see strong showings from some old favorites in the 2012 edition of the Rumble. The Rationales and Garvy J. took their nights, so I’ll be catching them again next week. Thick Shakes put on a raucous show to kick off their night. Cooling Towers did the same to close out theirs.
One of the best things about The Rumble is being able to check out bands you haven’t see before. I’ve managed to catch 5 new bands so far. Ghosts Of Jupiter took Preliminary Night #3 and left me eager to check them out again next week. The Susan Constant was fantastic. I know they made some new fans on their night. The Tin Thistles brought with them the same devil-may-care attitude Mellow Bravo had last year. In the end, it’s just a big party, right? I also got my first exposure to Letterday and Grey Valley Ghosts. The biggest disappointment of this year’s event was not being able to catch The Grownup Noise. I’ve heard great things about them, but Paul Hansen slipped a disc in his back and they had to withdraw from the competition. Get well soon, Paul!
Lada Vs. Lada
This is my favorite story of this year’s Rumble. With Garvy J. and Ghosts Of Jupiter advancing to the semi-final round, Tommy Lada will be competing against himself on Friday the 13th. How much fun is that going to be to watch?
Fun With Numbers
The third time’s the charm: All of the winners so far have come slot #3.*
Strength in numbers: All of the winners have had 5 members. In fact, 7 of the 11 bands that have performed so far have been 5 piece bands. There was one trio, Endless Wave, and a trio of 4 piece acts.
Two for one: 2 bands had covers in their sets.** 2 bands have had 3 guitars.*** Only Letterday had both.
Play Me Out
Animal Talk’s “Into The Sun” is just too damn catchy. That song, and a few of the other songs that have been stuck in my head after these first few Rumble nights, are below. Check them out, and then come out for the rest of the action. Here’s the schedule. Get thee to TT’s!
* The Rationales were scheduled for the third slot, but moved to the second when The Grownup Noise had to cancel. I’m still going to allow this little “fact” to stand.
** Letterday covered “Holiday” by The Get Up Kids. The Tin Thistles busted out The Misfits’ “Skulls”. Garvy J. had musical references to other songs, but no true covers.
Thick Shakes crammed 11 no-frills garage rock songs into their 30 minute set that kicked off Preliminary Night #2 of the Rock ‘N’ Roll Rumble. It was a bashy, trashy, Farfisa-drench fuzzfest and I loved it. Don’t stop – go go go!
Well, it’s that time of the year again. The Rumble is upon us. Sunday night will kick off the 2012 edition of this rock n’ roll institution. I called the 2011 version “a crash course in Boston awesomeness”. I have no reason to think this year won’t be the same. Having been to many a Rumble show (and participated in a couple) I can tell you these are always a lot of fun.
For the past few years The Rock ‘N’ Roll Rumble has been curated by Anngelle Wood. She’s done a fine job, hasn’t she? This year will be no exception. I’ve managed to document exactly half of this year’s participants in the wild. I look forward to checking out the other half. Below is the complete schedule with some links to the bands’ shows I’ve caught in the past. If all goes according to plan, you’ll be seeing lots of Rumble pics up on Daykamp Music over the next few weeks. Check back often. More importantly, go see some of the shows!