PDX_2X4 : RAINY DAY DREAMSMay 30, 2010
a Portland live music podcast featuring 2 songs each by Explode Into Colors, Mike Coykendall & the Golden Shag, The Minus 5 and the Lex Browning Band.
PDX_2X4: Rainy Day Dreams
As Spring slides soggily into Summer, we can only dream that there is sunny, Beach weather ahead here in the Great Northwest. The Portland bands Explode Into Colors, Mike Coykendall & The Golden Shags, The Minus 5 and the Lex Browning Band share their umbrellas:
Double click on the audio player to listen:
Not wishing to rain on your parade, but word is that Explode Into Colours, a band that has generated a huge buzz during the past 2 years, are about to play their final gig (at the Mercury 10th Anniversary party at Rotture). In 2009, NME voted them one of the ten top bands of SXSW and they recently were voted Best New Band in Willamette Week. When Lisa Schonberg and Heather Treadway lay down a twin, tribal beat for Claudia Meza’s downstroked baritone guitar and echo drenched vocal, their sound is invigorating, their gigs become Events. New release, Quilts, a 12 “ compilation of their 3 vinyl singles will be released in June (buy it here). Grab it fast before it goes out of print as quickly as the 45’s did. Listen to our podcast for 2 songs, “Heat” and “Sharpen The Knife” performed last year at Holocene, in the support slot to The Raincoats. If you were there, you probably saw Gina Birch, videocam in hand, literally running around the room to document the excitement of the performance. Explode Into Colors will be dearly missed. More info here.
Mike Coykendall, since moving to Portland in 1999, is best known as a producer, manning the board in his attic studio for such bands as M Ward, She & Him, Richmond Fontaine, Bright Eyes, Fernando, Blitzen Trapper and Beth Orton. Back in San Francisco, his band Old Joe Clarks issued 3 critically acclaimed albums. Larry Crane of Jackpot Studios claims “November” to be one of the finest album projects in which he’s ever been involved. At the Doug Fir Lounge, Mike’s current band, The Golden Shags, recently played “Wasted Star” from “November”, as well as “Marilee”, a seriously great song that will appear on their next release. In the meantime, check out Mike’s excellent solo album, The Unbearable Being of Likeness, released earlier this year. (buy it here). more info here
The Minus 5; you’ve probably heard of this local, upstart band. Over the years Scott McCaughey and Peter Buck, when not playing stadiums with REM, have roped into their loose collective such luminaries as members of The Posies, Wilco, and NRBQ as well as Paul Westerberg, Robert Pollard, John Ramberg, and John Wesley Harding. Check out the latest (and 8th) album, Killingsworth, where mega-fan Scott wisely taps into Portland’s vast talent pool, gathering members of The Decemberists, Casey Neill & the Norway Rats, and the now-defunct She Bee Gees. It’s a real blessing for Portland and Seattle to have multiple shows from them each year. For fans not as lucky, we have a special treat in our podcast: The Minus 5, with Scott & Peter being joined by Ezra Holbrook (drums), Tucker Jackson (pedal steel) and Chuck Carroll (piano), performing 2 Neil Young songs from the classic (but still unnervingly out of print) Time Fades Away: “Yonder Comes The Sinner” and “Last Dance”. It was a memorable evening at Dante’s, in which 3 bands recreated Neil’s so-called Doom Trilogy in their entirety. They captured the ragged glory to perfection. Who cares if it rains a lot in the Northwest when evenings like this can be witnessed? Read more on The Minus 5 here.
Last year, Lex Browning, a talented guitarist and fiddle player for local legends the Freak Mountain Ramblers, finally released a solo album, Good Rain; something he’s been threatening to do for a long time. Its an excellent effort that puts the spotlight on the artistry and songwriting talent that he’s been contributing, since the 1970’s, to bands such as Quarterflash, The Clamtones, Great Plains, the Austin Lounge Lizards as well as performing with folks like Tanya Tucker, Pam Tillis, Vince Gill, Kenny Rogers, and Trace Adkins. For his CD release party at the White Eagle Saloon, Lex invited Turtle VanDemarr and other musical pals to play the songs that he loves; included here are the gospel “I Shall Rise” and the rollicking, lusty “Nude Beach”. Every Sunday night, Lex plays with the Freak Mountain Ramblers to an always packed Laurelthirst Pub, a residency that FMR fans refer to, simply, as “Church”. More info on Lex Browning. More info on FMR. Buy Lex’s album.
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