31 March 2010

Dum Dum Girls, Girls @ the Recher 3/30/10

For the sake of full disclosure, it should go on record that Gary and I fucking hate the Recher. We used to go there for shows when we were in high school, and every trip was the same. Drinking copious amounts of liquor in the parking lot, and then entering the venue and trying to act not drunk in order to avoid dealing with those dickhead security guards. Last night, while walking through the parking lot I realized that I had vomited there on at least three separate occasions, and there's always going to be that one time that we got kicked out. This is a place where the marquee headliner for the month is Uncle Kracker. The kinds of acts that take the Recher stage are normally either Dave Matthews Band cover bands or shitty early '00s nu-metal acts. The only real appeal of going there back then was the fact that it was somewhere he could go to smoke cigarettes. With that being said, we drove down there last night.
I told Gary that we couldn't miss the Dum Dum Girls, and he said "Whatever, fine." This meant having to leave absurdly early since doors were inexplicably opening at seven. We got there at 8:15, and there were approximately 26 people there. More arrived later on, but truth be told it would have been really neat if the show had gone down with only twenty-some people in attendance.
In short, the Dum Dum Girls ruled. Their record had just dropped that morning, and it was the first night of the tour but the set was totally rad. It started off somewhat hushed, but that was only temporary. When I saw the band over the summer it was in name only, since the dude from Blank Dogs and the Crocodiles frontman were playing with Dee Dee and Frankie. Last night, the line-up was different but it was still top of the pops. Not to suggest that it's pop, but rather just to find another way to say it was quite excellent. It's one of those hard-to-explains. Striking. Enthralling. Coolest fucking thing I've heard in awhile. One of those.
Given my limited knowledge, I would guess that they played most of the new album plus the stuff that has been on the EPs. I cannot confirm this, nor can I prove that the bass player was looking in my direction. Gary thinks she may have been.
A few months back, I, like many others, was completely enamored with the Girls record. I spun it often, and it was one of those records that I felt compelled to tell other people about. Going to the show would have been a no-brainer if it weren't for the venue.
Before Girls took the stage, I noticed something. I saw a bro with one of those puffy vests on, like the kind that Raekwon wears his video. I also saw this one asshole in a Guess leather jacket, who earlier had yelled at DDG that they were "fucking hot" and followed that charming barb with "Don't act like you didn't hear me." I may not know much about women, but I know for certain that you don't holler shit at them. You talk to them, like regular people.
Early on during Girls' set, Gary tapped me on the shoulder and said "This is a real rock band." And he was right, there were five dudes on stage and at one point there was harmonica playing. We dug that.
It may have been the area we were in, and it may have been the theatre itself but something seemed off. For all of Girls, the crowd seemed to be comprised of lame MGMT fans who knew the bottom would be falling out for their favorite band of 15 months and that they needed to latch on to a new one and for whatever reason they chose the chill band from San Francisco. The only time they danced was during "Lust for Life", and that same asshole in the Guess leather shouted the whole time during "Hellhole Ratrace". What, just because you know the lyrics you're not an asshole? Not only that, but when the set ended they demanded more songs and the band said "We only know one more, and it's really slow so unless you want to couple up and slow dance we're finished." The middling crowd was having none of it, and five people actually slow danced their way through the closer.
Given the detractions already laid out, it was still a damn good Tuesday night. The openers basically blew the headliners out of the water, but the whole thing was music that should definitely be heard so even though it seemed to end with a tidal wave of lameness it was still convivial. The argument could be made that it was wildly uneven since the first half was totally fucking awesome and the second half wasn't so much, but that can be left underneath the bridge. It was the first night of the jaunt after all, and chances are the other destinations will be exponentially better than the fucking Recher.

29 March 2010

Dum Dum Girls: "Jail La La"

A music video for the Dum Dum Girls' "Jail La La", off of the album I Will Be which drops tomorrow via Sub Pop.

Not only does the new record physically arrive tomorrow, but the band will also be in my neck of the woods for a show tomorrow night. They're opening for Girls, so despite the questionable venue it should be pretty rad. If all goes according to plan, there will be a show recap and an album review in this space very soon.
While we're discussing plans, Gary should be hard at work on some new art for a planned feature that will debut in about two weeks. Admittedly, No Gift for the Gab has been in a slump for a few weeks now but expect an improvement soon.

20 March 2010

18 March 2010

High on Fire: "Frost Hammer"

Off of Snakes for the Divine, which just came out the other week. They're coming to Baltimore in a few weeks, and I'm fairly certain that I will be attending.

I bought this on Amazon for less than a pack of cigarettes

The Soft Pack: The Soft Pack (Kemado 2010)
(Writer's Note: Technically this album was purchased at the Sound Garden in Baltimore, but it was still less than a pack of smokes so there you go.)
If I'm understanding this correctly, this band used to be called the Muslims but changed their name because of the "ignorant, racist bullshit that came out of people's mouths during shows/interviews/conversations." (via) However, the new moniker angered even more people because they thought that the band was now 'selling out'. Cats on the internets were going as far to say that they dug the Muslims EP, but did not dig anything by the Soft Pack. Further drawing the ire of the ever fickle internet commenter were opening gigs with the Vivian Girls, the Breeders, and Franz Ferdinand. That, and the fact that these guys kind of sound like the Strokes if they were from San Diego instead of New York.
Haters be damned, on January 30th the Soft Pack played ten shows in one day in various parts of the greater Los Angeles area and they did the whole thing traveling on a bus fueled by vegetable oil. As this is being written, they are doing a slew of shows in Austin. The score at this point includes a manageable amount of detractors on the internets, and playing lots of shows.
As far as the actual record is concerned, it's short. Ten songs in about thirty minutes, which goes by crazy fast if you're drinking while listening. What I've noticed since owning this album is that while I don't necessarily have moments where I say to myself, "I am really craving some Soft Pack right about now," I quite enjoy it when it accidentally starts playing. I feel like if I listened to it too much, then a rant would follow about how the band is post-something and post-post-something else. Check it out, but only if you want to.

15 March 2010

Meth, Ghost, and Rae: "Wu Massacre"

I can't remember if I had mentioned this here or not, but Method Man, Ghostface Killah, and Raekwon are releasing a new album entitled Wu Massacre on March 30. It was supposed to drop back in December, but it got pushed back for whatever reason. Here's the cover art:

There were some teaser trailers, but they were kind of intense so I'll refrain from posting them. If there is public demand for them then I'll throw them on here, but for now no video. There are, however, three different special edition covers for the record. There's one for each cat.

#1. Method Man

#2. Ghostface Killah

#3. Raekwon
(via nah right)

14 March 2010

I bought this on Amazon for less than a pack of cigarettes

The Kills: No Wow (Domino 2005)
Along with the prerequisite that this album cost less than my favorite addiction, I was compelled to purchase this record after reading a possibly unread interview with Stephen Malkmus, that for all I know has been buried in the annals of the internets for at least a hundred years. In it, SM is asked about music worth listening to and he responds by name-checking Animal Collective's Sung Tongs, Dead Meadow's Feathers, and this one among others. I was going to get it anyway since I thought the cover art was rad, but this discovery made the acquisition seem even more necessary.
"There's something at the core of it that's beyond music. We started off as two introverted people that found each other living parallel lives 4,000 miles away. We were both making short films for no one to watch, making tapes for no one to listen to, and writing literature for no one to read. It became a little two-person art group." (The Kills' Hotel)
The Kills are guitarist Jamie Hince and vocalist Alison Mosshart, but when they make music they go by the names Hotel and VV. According to the internets, they first crossed paths when she heard him practicing in the hotel room above her's. Then both of their respective bands broke up. Then for a series of months, she was in Florida and he was in London and they collaborated by mailing tapes to one another. Eventually, she moved out there and they picked new names.
"I think it's inevitable that we'll be compared with bands like the White Stripes, but I don't want to be affiliated with anybody really." (Hotel)
In the beginning, the Kills and the White Stripes were mentioned in the same breath. They still are now, but only by lazy writers. It's a part of the guy-girl-kinda bluesy-faintly sexy milieu that drives older folks wild. It's not because of the sounds. Jack and Meg's music possesses an earnestness and an energy that is unique in and of itself. The White Stripes are the White Stripes, and no one else really sounds like them. Hotel and VV certainly don't. The Kills are achingly hip in their approach and delivery.
It's guitars and a drum machine for eleven tracks. Actually, only ten since "Rodeo Town" is a different beast. The rest, though, are tightly rolled hits of satisfaction. It took me awhile to realize it, but this record reminds me of Cormac McCarthy's writing style in the sense that it's both frustratingly simple and pretty awesome at the same time. You never feel like you're getting a whole lot, which makes the need for it greater, and then blink, and it's all over and you find yourself going back to the beginning in an attempt to tackle it from a different angle. It finally sets in that this is the end result of proper execution.
In a day and age, where bands try to sound shittier to appear cooler this just is.
(Hotel excerpts via)

13 March 2010

Ryan Adams might be releasing a new record. You interested?

ryanada.ms, the official Ryan Adams website, has a song streaming right now and it's title may very well be "Electrosnake". Above the stream, it says "We're going to begin pressing ORION -- my most legit METAL record -- on vinyl next week. Have a listen to the song below, and let us at PAXAM know if you'd be interested in purchasing one."
Either way you look at it, there's a new Ryan Adams album coming. How metal it actually is, is debatable. Here at No Gift for the Gab, I'm waiting until I hear a full song before making any actual decisions but I know definitively that I will consider to buying this record every day from now until eternity. After listening to Sabbath and High on Fire all week, my only concern is whether it's going to be metal enough. Give it a listen here, and then answer the poll question.

10 March 2010

Real Estate: "Suburban Dogs"

Still dig this band, and still like this song, so here's a video for it. Real Estate is actually opening up for Woods on a month long tour. They're coming my way on the 27th, and I might be going. A month ago I was going for sure, but then a week ago I definitely wasn't going. Yesterday, I warmed up again to the notion of going. That being said, I'll probably change my mind again tomorrow. All dates below.
Woods/Real Estate March '10 Tour:
3/12 Brooklyn, NY - Music Hall of Williamsburg
3/13 Montreal, Quebec - Lambi
3/14 Toronto, Ontario - Horseshoe Tavern
3/15 Chicago, IL - Lincoln Hall
3/16 Lawrence, KS - Jackpot Music Hall
3/17-3/20 SXSW
3/22 Nashville, TN - The End
3/23 Bloomington, IN - The Bishop
3/24 Cleveland, OH - The Spot at Case Western
3/25 Pittsburgh, PA - University of Pittsburgh
3/26 Haverford, PA - Haverford College
3/27 Washington, DC - Rock and Roll Hotel
3/28 Durham, NC - Duke Coffeehouse

New Woods Album

Woods, No Gift for the Gab's favorite band of '09, announced they are dropping a new record. The album will be called At Echo Lake, and will be released on Woodsist. It will come out on May 11th.
1. "Blood Dries Darker"
2. "Pick Up"
3. "Suffering Season"
4. "Time Fading Lines"
5. "From the Horn"
6. "Death Rattles"
7. "Mornin' Time"
8. "I Was Gone"
9. "Get Back"
10. "Deep"
11. "'Til the Sun Rips"

09 March 2010

Biggie died thirteen years ago today

I was relatively young when this happened, but I still knew that it was a bummer. The fact that this man was only able to release two records is a damn shame. He was the best ever, and I'm not saying that because I listen to it, I'm saying it because it is fact.

May 21 1972-March 9 1997

Lou Reed at a basketball game


Toro Y Moi: "Talamak"

New video from Toro Y Moi, off of Causers of This.
(via P4K)

05 March 2010


Album for the weekend: Sebadoh: Bubble & Scrape
More artists were added to the line-up for the Pitchfork Music Festival. Joining Pavement, LCD Soundsystem, and Raekwon are Broken Social Scene, Panda Bear, Freddie Gibbs, Girls, El-P, Titus Andronicus, Smith Westerns, and the Jon Spencer Blues Explosion. Pretty rad, but July is still a long-ass time from now.
Elsewhere, the Dum Dum Girls covered The Raveonettes' "Heart of Stone" which can be heard here.
Saw this vid on the internets twice today, so obviously it must be shared.

03 March 2010

This Pavement reunion might be a big deal after all...

It's always been a big deal to me, but today it seemed to reach a new level. On Hipster Runoff today, Carles wrote a post about Pavement. In the past, he's mentioned them but nothing as direct as today's post. A slacker's assessment of the piece would condense the whole argument down to the question of whether or not something that was 'alt' in the 1990s is still 'alt' in 2010. There was a lot of talk about not 'getting' it, and Carles kept asking if anyone knew what Pavement sounded like. In a horribly twisted way, I almost feel like Carles was directly addressing me and I mean that in more ways than one.
There's part of me that thinks Carles was calling out all bloggers for raving about Pavement endlessly, but never providing evidence to support these claims. I totally do it, and there are probably others who do it as well. There's also another line of thinking that makes me suspect that somehow I was supposed to 'see' that post, and I realize that it is going to sound very far-fetched and it's going to make me sound mentally unstable but despite that I still can't rule it out completely.
The most obvious detraction to this theory is the fact this site gets nine hits a day, which makes it highly unlikely anyone on the internets knows anything about this operation. However, due to a slow work day I have come up with at least three ways in which he may be aware of this site. 1. I've name-checked both Hipster Runoff and Carles before in this space, and it wouldn't be ridiculous to assume that Carles has a Google alert for anytime his name or his website is mentioned on the internets. 2. Maybe he saw that one Brooklyn Vegan post that had an excerpt of my writing. 3. I sent him an e-mail once.
With that minor detail out of the way, the question now becomes why he would read this shit. Admittedly, this one stumps me. However, I feel like there are times where I patch together some coherent thoughts which are enjoyable to read, and occasionally I attend shows that could pass as 'bloggable'. With that being said, I doubt he comes for the videos.
And again, just to reiterate, this whole post has been pure speculation. The chances of Carles actually being aware of this site is something akin to the chances of being mauled by a panda bear and grizzly bear in the same day. I don't actually think that he reads any of this, but rather I merely wanted to suggest that it wouldn't be completely inconceivable if he did.

02 March 2010

Some videos from the Pavement show are finally starting to appear on the internet. After posting the set-list yesterday, I feel it is my journalistic responsibility to provide footage today. It doesn't even really matter how the camera work is, since this is Pavement and it's their first show in ten years. To reiterate, the below videos were filmed two nights ago in New Zealand during the first stop of the Pavement reunion tour.

01 March 2010

Pavement played for the first time in 10 years...

March 1st 2010 was the first scheduled performance of the Pavement reunion tour. The show went down in Auckland, New Zealand, so it's already happened. The first show on our soil is Coachella on the 18th of April, but then there's Sasquatch and P4K Fest as well as those four nights in Central Park. (info via BrooklynVegan) UPDATE: Shows have now been announced in Missouri, Minnesota, Philadelphia, Boston, and Atlanta.
Here's the setlist.
(Updated Upon Further Research)
"In the Mouth a Desert"
"Trigger Cut/Wounded-Kite at :17"
"Ell Ess Two"
"Shady Lane/ J Vs. S"
"Father to a Sister of Thought"
"Rattled by the Rush"
"Summer Babe"
"Kennel District"
"Silence Kit"
"Range Life"
"Stop Breathin"
"No Life Signed Her"
"Fight This Generation"
"Date w/IKEA"
"Box Elder"
"Gold Soundz"
"The Hexx"
"Give It A Day"
"Cut Your Hair"

"Spit on A Stranger"
"Conduit for Sale!"
"Loretta's Scars"