Friday, April 1, 2011

ROUND TEN: Or, the Whale v. Trampled by Turtles

After returning from a whirlwind tour of California, eighteen hours of sleep over four days, wineries visited and meetings held, drinks (oh the copious drinks) not to mention amazing food (which you will read about on my friend's amaze-balls blog : ... it's time to get back into the competition.

Or, the Whale

I'm a bit lazy this evening, enjoying a 2007 Chardonnay from Trefethen, so going to take their bio from the website: Or, the Whale is a collective of members who prove power in numbers. With a strong DIY ethic, and a Carter Family chemistry, they’ve continued to warm hearts and move feet across America for the past five years. They deliver honesty and energy every time, weaving smooth classic rocks jams, sweet folk lullabies, boot-stompin’ country rockers, and gritty blues porch anthems into a seamless and powerful live show

1) Toxic (Britney Spears cover) - Yes, you read that right. I happen to love the original for certain circumstances*, so when I went into review the band and was ready for some awesome jam tunes that might rival 'The Mighty Boosh'** I was a bit nonplussed. There's no Britney electronics and auto-tune, it's more over something you'd walk into the sunset to - very nouveau western with a gritty outlaw fighting to his death. That said, I liked it, but was hoping for that boot-stompin' rock they promised in the bio.

2) Datura - My alleged experience with datura is more like running down the beach naked with a purple dinosaur chasing me and flying hamburgers attacking my noggin. So, this melody doesn't really capture my alleged experience at all - with its guitar strumming and rolling vocals it's a more like a lazy afternoon of beers and croquet. I'd listen to this on a road trip through New Mexico. Fantastic vocals and a Billy Joel-esque piano interlude.

3) Never Coming Out - I'm not sure of the proper term for this type of guitar playing (the steel slidy up and down in an ethereal, diminished-chord feel?) It also employs awesome harmonies and snare-drum rhythm in the background that keeps things chugging along.

Trampled by Turtles

1) Feet and Bones - Where the previous band was tubing on the river, TBT is running away from the cops during a fecking raid.*** I've already loved on some of their previous tunes, so this is like a speed train into banjo awesomeness. You couldn't listen to this and do ANYTHING slow - it just makes your heart beat faster and feel like a slug if moving less that ludicrous speed. By the end, I've gone plaid.

2) Empire - Bit slower, thankfully, otherwise the Boopins might have a pug heart attack at my feeties.**** Okay dokey. (pours another glass of wine, lites up, hair into pony-tail.)

3) Whiskey - The equivalent of the wedding DJ saying "Now, we're going to take things down a notch..." Dude, this song is for you and sorry we didn't get that drink. It would have only led to five or twenty more, with an ensuing battle of wits where I would end up Vissini.


Have I mentioned lately how much I enjoy the band 'Apartment'? No? Well, I do. So while "Fall Into Place" plays in the background, I'll sum up. Tough call. But going to go with Trampled By Turtles. They've got the energy that would pick me up. Would happily vote for Or, the Whale but just didn't resonate on this Friday eve. Sorry Or, The Whale. Blame Russel Brand. I'm reading his autobiography and feeling like an in-eloquent git. Congratulations Trampled By Turtles, you are still in the running to become BEST BAND NAME AT SXSW. Please don't trample any turtles in the interim or I shall be forced to call PETA.

Up Next: Sex With Strangers versus Spyder Baybie Raw Dog & 2% Muck

* Cleaning my house, dancing to madly while intoxicated, bedroom antics, and paying my taxes.
** Great show, look it up. Watch it. Love it. Spread butter all over it and get comfy.
*** Not that I have ever experienced that madness.
Rugen to the left of me, Moocha on my right, here I am - stuck in the pug pack with you.

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