Weekly Volcano Blogs: Walkie Talkie Blog

Posts made in: February, 2010 (73) Currently Viewing: 21 - 30 of 73

February 5, 2010 at 2:03pm

Nashville Pussy headed to Tacoma

Nashville Pussy


Nashville Pussy, the trailer-porn answer to AC/DC, will perform Friday, May 14 at Hell's Kitchen in Tacoma. Yes, we'll get to experience first hand self-styled scuzzball Blaine Cartwright's hangover howl and Ruyter Suys' gloriously Angus-ripping guitar as they sing the praises of low-life culture and sexual promiscuity.

Also on the bill will be Green Jelly and Psychostick.

We'll grab ticket information for you when it's available.

February 5, 2010 at 3:49pm

The Prefunk


I know, I know. Enough already. On Monday I promised you an interview with Metal Sanaz in advance of her appearance at Hell's Kitchen tonight.

It didn't happen, all right. Things sometimes go awry. Like a number of occasions in my life, she had my number - but she just didn't call. High school prepared me for this.

But, I'm done talking about Metal Sanaz. It's time to Prefunk for the weekend.

Roses are red, violets are blue, this week's Volcano has dating horror stories from our staff, and this Prefunk's for you.


Tango Alpha Tango at The New Frontier

Portland's Willamette Week called the band's brand of rock, "sweeping, dramatic and unapologetically evil at the most surprising of moments."

I'll just call this PDX based band fucking stellar Rose City indie pop - a tinge darker than twee, and more interesting than most. If you know of Carolines (RIP), then you know at least half of Tango Alpha Tango - created by Nathan and Aaron Trueb after Carolines disbanded, with the other half of Carolines going on to create PDX's Deepest Darkest.

This show is easily one of the weekend's best.

PREFUNK: As much as it pains me to say this, and question myself, I think this is one of those rare occasions in life when intoxicants won't be necessary. You won't need drugs to enjoy this - or get through it. You may not even want drugs, though - knowing you - that seems unlikely. Just have a few cordial cocktails at The New Frontier, kick back, and enjoy.


The Muthafuckin' Super Bowl

When I tell people I'm a fan of pro football - a big fan - sometimes I get dirty looks. Especially in scholarly, artistic or musical settings, my love of over-pumped men pushing each other around on Sunday afternoons tends to feel like a dirty little secret sometimes.

Oh, but not on Super Bowl Sunday. It's the one day of the year when just about everyone gives in and tunes in for four and a half hours of football, expensive commercials, and a somewhat pointless halftime show featuring the Who.

Come Sunday, that's exactly what I'll be doing. And, be honest, you will too. ...

PREFUNK: Nothing eases the five-hour pre-game show down your throat like cheese products. Cheese balls. Cheese dips. Cheese slices. Cheese sauces. And even Velveeta - cheese and the Super Bowl go together like, well, cheese and the Super Bowl.

To get ready for the big game, try setting a new personal record for overall cheese consumption. Around the three-pound mark, I hear one reaches a very pleasant state of euphoria.

Of course, shortly thereafter you vomit - but it's Super Sunday. You're going to do that anyway. 

Filed under: Music, Sports, Tacoma, The Prefunk,

February 6, 2010 at 12:40am

5 Things To Do: The Art of Chocolate, Krunk 5, blog party ...

SATURDAY, FEB. 6, 2010 >>>

1. The Gig Harbor Historic Waterfront Association hosts "The Art of Chocolate" - a chocolate walk offered in conjunction with the First Saturday Art Walk from noon to 6 p.m.

2. As part of their Icons of Washington History exhibit, the Washington State History Museum will bring Washington state historical figures to life in the theatrical production, Ghosts of the Great Hall: Icons of Washington tours from 1-3 p.m.

3. D.A.S.H. Center for the Arts hosts the Reality Check Dance Troupe's 5th annual Krunk dance showcase featuring hip-hop music at 7 p.m.

4. Corson Swift, Dreams Jaded, and guests perform at 8 p.m. at Stonegate Pizza.

5. urbanXchange throws a launch party for its new fashion blog featuring live music live music, DJs, door prizes, art, photographers, fashion photo booth and a "Zoolander" Walk Off from 8-11 p.m.

Filed under: 5 Things To Do, Arts, Music, Tacoma, History,

February 6, 2010 at 10:48am

NIGHT MOVES: Stop The Madness, Loaded For Bear

My Life in Black and White


HEAVY ROCK: Beautiful Mothers, Zook, At:1, Nothing You'd Like and Portland's My Life in Black and White will gather for an event being billed as "Stop the Madness, Increase the Peace" - a benefit for the Lakewood Police Department and the families of the fallen officers - at Hell's Kitchen. Think heavy rock for a good cause. Then think about showing up. 8 p.m., $5 minimum donation, Hell's Kitchen, 928 Pacific Ave., Tacoma - Matt Driscoll

POP ROCK: Loaded for Bear are brimming with theatricality, presenting themselves like a shadowy back-alley band at a slurred, drunken carnival of ill intent. Their songs are moody pieces of work, propelled by haunted piano lines and stuttering drum beats. The vocals call forth from the hazy din, gruff and tired, occasionally drowning in the fluttering reverb of the guitars. With To The Sea, 10 p.m., no cover, Le Voyeur, 404 E. Fourth Ave., Olympia - Rev. Adam McKinney

LINK: More live music in the South Sound tonight

Filed under: Music, Night Moves, Olympia, Tacoma,

February 8, 2010 at 11:10am

5 Things To Do: bella social, Bahia Rowen, Graphic Novel Book Club ...

MONDAY, FEB. 8, 2010 >>>

1. bellaballs studio - home of glass artist Diane Hansen and designer Lesli Jacobs-McHugh and their beautiful hand-blown glass floats, bellaballs, will host another bella social Monday night featuring cocktails, food and, you guessed it, bellaballs. 5-8 p.m., no cover, 747 Fawcett Ave., Suite B, Tacoma.

2. Olympia Downtown Association goes big-time and holds their annual meeting tonight from 6- 8:30 p.m. at Capital Playhouse.  $8 donation gets you in with appetizers, no-host bar, information and fun.  If you win the raffle, we get half. 612 4th Ave E, Olympia 360.357.8948

3. Bahia Rowen tickles your external auditory meatus (That's a real word, I swear I didn't make that up) at Mandolin Café from 7-9 pm.  Coincidentally, her indie-folk vibe goes well with Mandolin's meatus-loaf.

4. Things get graphic, let's discuss.  This month the Graphic Novel Book Club meets inside Hilltop's 1022 South to discuss Logicomix: An Epic Search for Truth by Apostolos Doxiadis, Christos H. Papadimitriou et al. 7 pm, 21+

5. Anyone with any physique and any skill level is welcome to attend Roller Derby practice held Mondays at Wheelz Skate Arena, 2101 Mildred in Fircrest.  Cost of $35/month for juniors and $50/month for adults includes weekly practice, skate rental during weekly practice, admission for all open skate sessions, and 10% off any skate purchase.  Junior roller derby-guys or gals ages 6-17 skate from 6:30-8pm, adults begin spinnin' their wheels at 8pm.  Show up and register, then go kick some butt.

Filed under: 5 Things To Do, Tacoma, Music, Sports, Arts,

February 8, 2010 at 12:05pm

An ode to Zinn

Last week I was sitting at the cultural epicenter Old School Pizzeria, jamming some 1942 in the front window, a few days away from one of my biggest interviews. In the five years or so since I was first introduced to the seedy, disgusting world of "professional journalism" I've been fortunate enough to swoop on some good assignments. I've got to talk to Neil DeGrasse Tyson about our favorite sci-fi movies and 9/11. I've had Amy Goodman call my phone for nine minutes of her time and caught her with a good one-liner. In all actuality, Weekly Volcano editor Matt Driscoll actually has a head on his shoulders, however fiendishly twisted and Jay Cutler-hating it is. He's assigned me some great stories, even if there is nothing on Earth like Denver Broncos fans. Nothing.

When Driscoll texted me "Never mind the Zinn assignment. He died today." I didn't believe it. Certainly something had gotten to him in the "Las Vegas of Meth" they call Lakewood. Perhaps the Winter Olympics fever had gripped him, maybe he won big on the X Games.

He replied, "Wouldn't joke about something like that," and I knew it to be true. 

Howard Zinn was about as polarizing and famous as a historian could be. A singularly-rare and rowdy entity, unabashedly proud to be a rebel and a radical, Zinn loved pushing buttons and challenging authority. Arthur Schlesinger, Jr. once called "a polemicist, not a historian." When chided as presenting an unreal and one-sided view of history, Zinn  completely agreed. That was the whole point.

"If you look at history from the perspective of the slaughtered and mutilated, it's a different story," he said.

Zinn, the son of poor Jewish immigrants from the slums of Brooklyn, understood that well, having learned first hand the horror of war much like Kurt Vonnegut, right there at the frontline of World War II. Zinn was himself a bombardier in the 490th, dropping bombs in Berlin and Eastern Europe.  When the war ended, he worked odd jobs before going to college on the GI Bill. Returning to the sites of his bombings on a doctoral research trip, he learned that many of his bombing runs near the end were on friendly civilian populations, misreported, and generally non-essential, rather having been ordered by higher-ups striving for promotions.

He later became a professor at Spelman  College, historically a black womens' college in Atlanta. A firm believer in the underdog, he joined with SNCC (Student Non-violent Coordinating Committee) as an advisor and participated in many protests, including sit-ins at segregated lunch counters.  He was later fired for insubordination, and again he agreed he was guilty, with a smile. His students included Alice Walker, who authored The Color Purple, and Marian Wright Edelman, founder of the Children's Defense Fund.  Walker, in a touching reflection on learning of the passing of Zinn, wrote:

"I was Howard's student for only a semester, but in fact, I have learned from him all my life. His way with resistance: steady, persistent, impersonal, often with humor, is a teaching I cherish."

Zinn, a retired professor from Boston University, will be best remembered for his courageous re-telling of the rise of freedom and democracy in the America in his 1981 best-seller A People's History of The United States. The book explores an alternative version of American history, not from the conquerors and traditional heroes, but from those at the bottom of the struggle, a history buried underneath the bombs of traditional pomp and patriotism. He believed history should not just be remembered for the expansionist cowboys, but of the brave Native Americans who rose to fight against them, of the slaves against the slave-masters, anarchists against capitalists, feminists against the patriarchy.  His alternative vision of our great nation provided a much-needed parallel view from the other end of the gun, something that wasn't (and to the chagrin of many today, still isn't) being told properly.

To say that it ruffled a few tail feathers would be an understatement.  To say that it changed many a curriculum in high schools and universities, and helped a new generation establish a more balanced and accurate account of America would be a better statement.

On Jan. 27, Howard Zinn died of a heart attack, swimming in Santa Monica. He was scheduled to speak at The Evergreen State College in Olympia on Feb. 5. I'm really bummed that I didn't get the chance to speak to this great man, but we'll always be able to check out his books, to read his wisdom, and to take his courage with us and try to put a little bit of it in our lives.  Godspeed Professor Zinn, tarry well into the good night.

February 9, 2010 at 10:41am

5 Things To Do: Ghandi, malbecs, Percy Jackson, open mic, magic!

Tuesday, Feb. 9 >>>

1. Arun Ghandi, the grandson of Mahatma Ghandi, will be in Puyallup to discuss his grandfather's philosophies of non-violence and talk about the problem of racism. Noon, free, Pierce College, 1601 39th Ave. SE, Puyallup.

2. Are you an unofficial member of Camp Half-Blood? If so, it's time to get your geek on and enjoy some games, activities and food in celebration of the release of the movie, Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Lightning Thief, which comes out in theaters this Friday.  4-5 pm, Timberland Regional Library, Tumwater Branch.  7023 New Market Street, Olympia

3. What do you get when you mix Japanese marimba and Colombian quena?  Our first guess was teriyaki nachos, but we're being told the answer is: Magic!  Classical Tuesdays in Old Town with The Miho & Diego Duo atSlavonian Hall, 2301 N. 30th Street in Old Town Tacoma.  Free.

4. Feeling talented or not, The Antique Sandwich Company hosts an open mic night every Tuesday.  Sign-ups begin at 6 p.m., and the reality of whether or not anyone will clap for you starts at 7 p.m.  5102 N. Pearl Street, Tacoma

5. "Battle Malbec" at Pour At Four. Six Malbecs from Argentina, all at the $10.00 price point. Should be a great tasting to find your type of Malbec. While the Weekly Volcano's "type of Malbec" is any kind that comes in a very large glass, you should totally go anyway.  Complimentary tasting from 5:30 - 8:00 p.m.

February 9, 2010 at 5:39pm

A conversation with Ross Cowman

Eleanor Murray will be part of this Friday's Bicycle Records presented show at the Loft on Cherry.


This Friday, Feb. 12, Olympia's Bicycle Records will present what should be an awe-inspiring show at The Loft on Cherry Street. Bringing Mason Lindahl, Eleanor Murray, Briana Mariela and Ellie Fortune to the stage, for lovers of great music and DIY ethics, it's sure to be a show not to miss.

But what is Bicycle Records really all about? Sure, it's an Oly based record label - but, these days, what does that really mean?

The Weekly Volcano caught up with Bicycle's Ross Cowman to find out...

WEEKLY VOLCANO: First of all, talk about the creation of Bicycle Records and how it came to be. What was the original vision, and how closely have you come to it? Who's involved, and who deserves credit?

ROSS COWMAN: Bob Schwenkler started the record label back in 2004 when he was a recording student at Evergreen. I came on board first as an artist, then as a co-owner in 2005. At the time the only thing we knew about record labels was that you put the name of the record labels somewhere on the album. We started off releasing CDRs in photocopied jackets in batches of 50 that we burned on Bob's computer.

Originally the idea was to release music on the quieter side of things. Bob was a big fan of Portland's HUSH records, and he wanted to do something like that.

I really admired the professionalism of Slim Moon and his label Kill Rock Stars, and also the simplicity and ethics of Plan-It-X records and Discord. For both of us it was a big priority to have close working relationships with our artists and to capture the regional sound where we lived.

VOLCANO: The job and (in general) idea of a record label seems to be ever changing these days. What exactly is it that you guys do? Is it similar to what most labels do, or is it different?

COWMAN: Bicycle records, produces and promotes music in hand printed packaging. We also distribute music digitally, through our website, and to independent retail stores throughout the United States, Canada, Europe and New Zealand.

One big difference between us and other labels is how we pay our artists.

An artist on a major label will earn one or two bucks for each 15-dollar album that sells. Even most indie labels only give their artists 20 or 50 copies to sell, then make them pay six bucks or more for additional copies to sell.

Our artists keep fifty percent of the profits from everything we sell, 200 albums from the first pressing to sell at their shows, plus seventy percent of everything they sell after that.

This helps our artists to support themselves on and off the road.

Another difference is the broad scope of what happens here. We built our own website, our own database, we distribute, we promote, we record, we do all the graphic design, and we hand letterpress and silkscreen our own packaging. I think this helps us to have a cohesive aesthetic, and a consistency in how we work with our customers and clients.

VOLCANO: How does your location in Olympia impact Bicycle Records? Is Bicycle Records a reflection of Oly, or does Oly reflect Bicycle Records?

COWMAN: Bicycle would not exist without Olympia. The support from the community, from K and Kill Rock Stars, and from all the talented artists who grew up or were drawn to live here has been crucial. I don't even know if I would still be making music if it were not for this place.

VOLCANO: Talk a little about the show coming up at The Loft. Anything you're particularly excited about? What can folks expect, and how was the show put together?

COWMAN: I met Mason Lindahl in Sacramento when he was 16 (I think - he lied to me and told me he was 18). He was scouted by some record label as the next Brighteyes or some bullshit. Later he got signed to Columbia (the label, not the country) and moved to Olympia to record demos for his album. The demos were amazing - think Animal Collective and Hella on acoustic guitar. The A&R guy listened to the demos and sent Mason back a mix CDR of John Lennon and Bob Dylan, asking Mason if he could do something more like that.

The label dropped him, and Mason moved to Seattle and got a job as a cook. Kind of dropped out. I didn't hear from him for years. Now suddenly, he's got this new album out and what I've heard so far totally shreds. I can't wait to see him live.

I'm also a huge fan of Eleanor Murray and Briana Mariela, though I won't take up more space talking about them now.

Oh and free Jambalaya.

VOLCANO: Anything exciting you're currently working on? What does the rest of 2010 and beyond hold for Bicycle? Basically, where is this all going?

COWMAN: We just hired two sales reps and are trying to convince Jordan Smith to move back here from New Zealand to be our full time promotions director. (I think it's going to work.)

Expect new albums from June Madrona, Eleanor Murray, Rye 'n Clover, and Eli Moore (of LAKE).

VOLCANO: What does Bicycle Records look at when choosing whom to work with? What's important to you guys?

COWMAN: I'll assume you're talking about the artists we release. Part of it is taste; Bob and I have to both like their music.

I care a lot about lyrics and the intention behind the song. Part of it is business, the artist either has to have a track record of touring and be willing to commit a couple of month to supporting the release, or be able to help finance the album. Sometimes both depending how our finances are doing. 

VOLCANO: If you didn't spend your time doing this, what would you be doing?

COWMAN: Playing dungeons and dragons in the forest.

VOLCANO: What is your favorite record of all time and why?

COWMAN: Cold Black Cascades, by Forest McBrian. Imagine Elliot Smith on a backpacking trip through the Rainforest. Tears me up every time I listen to it.  Don't bother trying to find it online, Write me a letter I'll send you a copy.

VOLCANO: If you had to sum up Olympia in one sentence, what would it be? How does Bicycle fit into that? 

COWMAN: The myth of Olympia will always be more powerful then the reality of Olympia.

VOLCANO: Fill in the blank: The show coming up with Eleanor Murray, Mason Lindahl, Briana Mariela and Ellie Fortune at The Loft is better than a poke in the eye with a sharp stick because _____.

COWMAN: I'm not going to make any promises.

UPDATE: In the first version of this blog post, we incorrectly refered to Mr. Cowman as "Russ." His name is Ross. We've very sorry about any confusion. All we can say is our monkeys are extremely overworked, and we suspect they huff glue at lunch.

Again, we apologize - especially to Mr. Cowman.

Filed under: Music, Olympia,

February 10, 2010 at 10:31am

5 Things to Do Today: Love Tacoma, Bruce Haasl, Oly open mic, Young Professionals Network,Yuri Norstein

Bruce Haasl will perform at the Urban Onion in Olympia tonight starting at 8 p.m.

Wednesday, Feb. 10 >>>

1. Russian animation master Yuri Norstein will discuss and screen his work in Olympia. His films Hedgehog in the Fog (1975) and Tale of Tales (1979) were voted the best animation films of all time by international juries in Los Angeles, Tokyo and Zagreb. 7:30 p.m., $5-$10, The Evergreen State College Communications Lab Building, 2700 Evergreen Parkway NW, Olympia. For more info click here.

2. Watch us love you for joining Love Tacoma at the Adriatic Grill.  Let's also love the delicious sampling of Mediterranean and Italian cuisine Adriatic Grill has to offer and sample their wines at discount.  5:30 - 7:30 p.m. 4201 South Steele Street, Tacoma

3. Young Professionals Network will be meeting at Varsity Grill.  Information about YNPN, a Nintendo Wii, fun door prizes, and lots of great networking opportunities will be available to folks between the ages of 22-39.  Older than 39?  I say go and stalk them. $5 donation and great happy hour deals. 5:30-8:30 PM  1114 Broadway, Tacoma

4. The Press Coffeehouse and Lounge holds an open mic at 7 p.m.  Coincidentally, it's also "Wine Wednesday," meaning house wine is $3 a glass.  Go ahead and down a few before your open mic - you're going to need the liquid courage. 406 Washington St. SE, Olympia

5. The Urban Onion inside the Historic Olympic Hotel happily welcomes all fans and admirers of the very handsome guitarist and singer, Bruce Haasl.  If you're not an admirer yet, you'll catch our drift once you go check him out. 8 p.m. 116 Legion Way, Olympia

February 11, 2010 at 10:30am

5 Things to Do Today: Fiber fun, Lakewood Playhouse, the Missionary Position, Tush Burlesque, Vinum wine

Jeff Angell's Missionary Position (oh yeah!) will play Doyle's Public House tonight


1. Missionary Position shows up, and shows us how music should be done.   Buy your date a few beers and later explore the position at your own leisure.  9pm, Doyle's Public House, 208 Saint Helens Avenue, Tacoma

2. The "Pay What You Can" performance of Kaufman and Hart's You Can't Take It With You at the Lakewood Playhouse happens tonight at 8 p.m. Along with a night of performance comedy, you can enjoy an exhibit by local photographer Brenda Barnum Elmore. Tickets available at the door at 7 p.m.  5729 Lakewood Towne Center Blvd. SW

3. Play with fibers as Miranda Pollitz introduces needle felting at King's Books, starting at 7 p.m. The class costs $15, including materials. For those new to the craft, this kind of fiber isn't the kind that keeps you regular. 218 St Helens Ave,

4. Tush Burlesque Presents: Pink Oyster Cult, A love Letter in Stilettos and Sequins.  (We really wish they'd stop reading the Weekly Volcano's secret staff diary.)  7:30pm and 9:30pm $10 Royal Lounge, 311 Capitol Way North, Olympia

5. Vinum holds a wine tasting tonight for those who appreciate LARGE tastes on the cheap.  Get this: $5 for FIVE 4-6oz pours.  Say What?  Those crazy Vinum kids are out of control with this one.  4-9pm 1001 Pacific Avenue, Tacoma

Filed under: 5 Things To Do, Arts, Music, Community,

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