Tagged: Baby’s All Right

Back from the Tombs

On July 29, 2006, at Southpaw, a now-defunct music venue in Park Slope, Brooklyn, my friend Adam invited me to see Rocket from the Tombs. He had met a girl at his sister’s birthday party a few weeks earlier. Named for a season of the year, she was a pretty girl with pale-skin, dark hair trimmed with bangs, and thick-framed black plastic glasses. He was interested in going to the show as I presumed he was trying to bone up on the kind of music she liked. Had he not jumped the queue, I probably would have talked to her first. Oh well: bros before… am I right?

Rocket from the Tombs was a short-lived Cleveland band that formed in the mid-1970s. Their sound, commonly referred to as “proto-punk,” was very heavy, loud and simple, especially compared to flair and multitrack ornamentation of album-oriented rock that populated FM radio during the same period. Though Rocket from the Tombs would only record a few songs, they would influence countless future punk bands and themselves split into two well-regarded bands of the 1980s: Pere Ubu and the Dead Boys.

I’m not sure if Adam and Autumn/Summer confused this band with Rocket from the Crypt, a 1990s San Diego band that enjoyed much greater financial and mainstream success than Rocket from the Tombs ever did, but joining him for this show was one of the best concert decisions I ever made. Having re-formed and despite looking more like jam band than a bunch of “punk,” they absolutely kicked ass and sounded like they had been playing together continuously with aplomb since 1975.

Rocket from the Tombs will return to the New York City area this weekend. They will be at Monty Hall on Saturday, December 5 in Jersey City and at Baby’s All Right on Sunday, December 6 in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. Not quite ten years later, I look forward to seeing them again.

The Fall and Rise of a Hollywood Expat

During last month’s end-of-the-semester Gradeathon, which is as painful but not as fun as the Climbathon, I spent a bunch of hours sitting at a few coffee shops around my Superfund site grading papers and exams. I like grading outside of the home and office for several reasons: it allows me to feel like a social being watching other “knowledge workers” do their thing, someone other than me makes me a fussy coffee, and I get to listen to something other than my stale music collection and esoteric podcasts.

One song I heard during my “residency” at Budin in Greenpoint was “Hollywood,” a song by Canadian singer Tobias Jesso, Jr. The song is very simple: it consists of almost all vocals and a few notes on the piano throughout the song, and it is punctuated by a few horn riffs at the end of piece. The lyrics are filled with agonizing feelings about Hollywood, apparently referencing some really difficult experiences Jesso had while making a go of it in Los Angeles some years ago.

And I don’t know if I can make it,
and I don’t know if I should,
I think I’ll say goodbye to Hollywood.

I don’t know if I can fake it,
if they tell me I’m no good,
I think I’m gonna fry in Hollywood.

It’s a lovely tune for what is a common refrain about struggling in Tinseltown and might make a suitable musical accompaniment for Life and Death of 9413: A Hollywood Extra, a 1928 silent film by Robert Florey and Slavko Vorkapich. In 9413, an actor with dreams of stardom arrives in Hollywood only to find a series of rejections. Instead of stardom, 9413 is anonymous and disposable.

As I listened to Jesso’s “Hollywood,” I kept thinking of 9413.


Kino included a version of this film on the DVD set Avant Garde: Experimental Film of the 1920s and 1930s, which is the same as the one I embedded above (and linked here in case oEmbed stops working). The music is so grating and distracting I always try to watch it silent. “Hollywood” might be for a better soundtrack to accompany 9413, or at least it will make for something to keep in my head because the song is much shorter than the film.

But unlike 9413, Jesso’s prospects are looking bright. Earlier this week, he released a second song, “How Could You Babe.” He also has an album, Goon, in the work for release in March on Saint Patrick’s Day. And he’s touring, too. He’ll be in New York at Baby’s All Right on Friday, March 27.

The above links to Amazon are affiliate links. If you buy something through those links, I will earn a commission fee.

Too Old for the Front Row

Quintron and Miss Pussycat at Baby's All Right

After months of anticipation, Quintron and Miss Pussycat played Baby’s All Right on Saturday. I had to miss the Weather Warlock show on Friday because I had to move (yes, again) and didn’t have time to get in a Day-After Thanksgiving bike ride and make it to Bushwick for a show at sunset. But as far as Saturday was concerned, there was no way I was going to miss that show.

Before Quintron and Miss Pussycat played their set, they put on a ten-minute puppet show featuring Christmas Bear.

Quintron and Miss Pussycat at Baby's All Right

In the puppet show, Christmas Bear finds an old family recipe…a very old recipe… for baking a special kind of cake. You can see a version of the show from earlier this year and learn how Christmas Bear’s cake fares in the baking contest.

After the ten-minute puppet show, the show started in earnest with a cover of “Rhinestone Cowboy.” As you can see, I had a pretty good spot for snapping photos, even if there were a few people blocking my view of the stage.

Quintron and Miss Pussycat at Baby's All Right

But when Quintron and Miss Pussycat began to play their original work, the crowd went nuts. The crowd turned into the kind you’d see at punk or a metal show. It had been a long time since I had been to a show like that. But since I wanted to get some good photos, I rode that crowd, as it rushed towards the stage, all the way to very front. I stayed there for the remainder of the show where I had an excellent vantage of Quinton playing the Hammond organ and his own Drum Buddy.

Quintron and Miss Pussycat at Baby's All Right

And, I had a great view of Miss Pussycat, too.

Quintron and Miss Pussycat at Baby's All Right

The only drawback was that I had to support myself by grabbing on to a monitor on the stage, hold my camera above my head for most of the set, and ensure that I was not going to get pinned against the stage. But the bright side of getting pummeled by a mass of people significantly younger than me was that I was extraordinarily close to the action.

Quintron and Miss Pussycat at Baby's All Right

My friend John, who came with me to the show, appreciated my position at the front of the crowd. At one point, I turned around and noticed him taking video of the show.

Quintron and Miss Pussycat at Baby's All Right

By the end of the almost two-hour performance, I was pretty beat up from having people knocking into me for almost two hours. It really was a case of being “too old for this shit.” But as sore as I was after the show and the next day, being that close enabled to make some pretty dynamic photos that only begin to capture the excitement of an electrifying and intoxicating performance that night.

Weather Warlock and Quintron and Miss Pussycat Come to Brooklyn

Two months ago, I was ecstatic about the opportunity to see Quintron and Miss Pussycat perform at Baby’s All Right in late November, and I bought a ticket.

In addition to his famous Drum Buddy, Quintron (or Quintronics, as he’s calling his electronic-gizmo manufacturing outfit) has built an audio synthesizer that responds to the weather. You can hear it in action, day and night, courtesy of the Internet.


The Weather Warlock is the name of the machine and also the improvised lineup of musicians that play as a drone band to accompany the Weather Warlock synthesizer. As part of Quintron and Miss Pussycat’s tour, Weather Warlock (the band) will be playing Weather Warlock (the synthesizer) at four special shows in Chicago, Ann Arbor, Brooklyn, and Miami.

The Brooklyn demonstration of the Weather Warlock will be at Secret Project Robot in Bushwick, Brooklyn on Friday, November 28. The show will take place at sunset, which I understand is supposed to happen at for 4:31 PM EST, and will feature some very special jammers, including Nels Cline, Sean Lennon, and, not surprisingly, Quintron.

Skip Black Friday, and go see and hear this unique contraption in action!

Weather Warlock (November 28) and Quinton and Miss Pussycat (November 29)

  • November 28, 2014
  • Sunset
  • Secret Project Robot, 89 Melrose St, Brooklyn
  • November 29, 2014
  • 8:00 PM
  • Baby’s All Right, 146 Broadway, Brooklyn
  • 12.00

Music: Quintron and Miss Pussycat at Baby’s All Right

At least year’s Gonerfest 10, Quintron and Miss Pussycat headlined the Thursday night show at the Hi-Tone in Memphis. Their performance absolutely blew away the crowd. Their energy and hard-hitting beats powered the audience, many of whom are in the late 30’s and older, through the 1:00 AM set time. I had heard of the duo before, but this performance made me a fan.

Quintron and Miss Pussycat will be coming to Brooklyn at Baby’s All Right on Saturday, November 29, at 8:00 PM. Yes, this is the Saturday after Thanksgiving so get back into town in time for this show.

Having been burned by Shannon and the Clams selling out each of their three shows last week, I jumped the gun and bought tickets for fear of being left out in the cold.


  • November 29, 2014
  • 8:00 PM
  • Baby’s All Right
  • 12.00

Coffee and Indoor and Outdoor Music

Seasonal creep

It’s when someone tries to hurry along the next season when we’re still in the midst of the current season. Some examples include Back-to-School sales in July, Christmas decorations in October, and Valentine’s Day swag right after New Year’s Day. I’ll even add registering for spring classes in the second week of the fall term.

I’ll admit that the weather this summer has been downright pleasant, temperatures in the low 80s with very low humidity, which hasn’t resembled the sultry summers of late. But yesterday, August 15, it was downright autumnal. Not only was it chilly enough for me to wear a sweatshirt when I saw the Boogaroos at the free outdoor show at the South Street Seaport last night, there were other signs of autumn:

  • There were NFL football games were playing on the big screens at bars across the city,
  • At one of those same bars, I saw a sandwich board easel advertising Oktoberfest beers,
  • On Thursday, I was handed a beer list that included four pumpkin beers,
  • Yesterday afternoon, I swore I saw NYU students beginning to move in to some of the dorms along Washington Square.

I really hate fall, despite the pleasant weather in September and early October. It signals the end of my lighter-than-normal workload, the end of softball season, long bike rides before more difficult to schedule, greenmarkets approach the end of their flavorful harvest, everyone is watching football, and I revert to wearing long pants. But before summer gives way to fall, here’s a few events still going on before it all ends in about two weeks.

Sadly, because the semester is about to start and I have work to do, I’ll probably miss all the outdoor stuff. Dang!