DOUBLE YOUR PLEASURE
Still googly-eyed after a tour with Sleater-Kinney, the White Stripes, the dynamic duo of Jack and Meg, have back-to-back shows planned this weekend at the Gold Dollar (3129 Cass, Detroit, 313-833-6873). Friday, they’re inviting the Hentchmen for some soul-rousing rock and blues. Saturday, Whirlwind Heat, a punk-synth band from Grand Rapids, joins the bill. After a few Midwest stops, the Stripes tour Japan, New Zealand and Australia. The band’s SubPop Single of the Month will be issued in December, but Jack says that everyone in the club will get it in January. You can’t buy it from the band, so if you want one, subscribe at subpop.com. Jack also says that he’s wrapping up his Detroit compilation for Sympathy For the Record Industry. Featured on the CD are Clone Defects, the Come Ons, Ko and the Knockouts, the Paybacks, Dirtbombs, Detroit Cobras, Soledad Brothers, Whirlwind Heat, Bantam Rooster, Vonbondies, Buzzards, Hentchmen and White Stripes. Each band is contributing a new song recorded at Jack’s house. The band also has an Australian-only tour 7-inch that’s to be released on Sympathy. Check out www.sympathyrecords.com.
Putting out a tour support CD is a good idea. The Web site, www.insound.com, has a bunch of cool ones. Not only are you helping your favorite bands make it to your city, but it’s an easy way to get collector’s items. I mention this because I recently read an article by production wizard Steve Albini called “The Problem With Music,” which originally ran in a 1993 issue of the Chicago magazine The Baffler. In it, Stevie tallies up the costs bands face when they sign with major labels. Even with hefty contracts, after touring costs, manager’s fees, legal fees, studio fees, etc., the bands usually ended up in the hole, according to Albini’s “fuzzy math” — and the labels, hundreds of thousands of dollars richer. Read it (but don’t lose all hope) at New Media Music's Web site.
My advice: Tour anyway and have fun. Make friends in the towns you visit so you have places to stay. Ask your rich uncle to buy you a gas card. Or buck up and live with your parents as long as they’ll let you live like everyone else.
I’m taking a bus to New York City next week for the CMJ festival to watch some of my neighbors play in bands in another state, and I can’t seem to get ahold of “my friend in New York.” Anyone have a 6-foot square of carpet for me to sleep on? Oh, yeah, and keep me updated of schedule changes.
Halloween means scary new CD releases! Of course, if you’re down with the clowns, you already know about ICP’s big release. And if you’re down with the booty, you’ll be waiting in line for DJ Assault’s Off the Chain for the Y2K. I spent Saturday cleaning my house to a promotional copy: Scrubbing the toilet has never been so much fun. Thursday at the Dandy Warhols show, the band sang a little “Ass & Titties” tribute to Assault, which was, surprisingly, quite good. And you can see Assault work his magic at Temple with The Grand Pubahs Tuesday, Oct. 24.
Mod Ev’s got some tricks up their sleeves as well for a Halloween show on Oct. 27 with 11th Hour, Sugah Da Dee and Mercury Triggers at I-Rock (16350 Harper, Detroit, 313-881-ROCK). Not only is there a costume contest, but you’ll be able to ingest powerful guitar with those spine-tingling scratches. Powerful vocals that bring to mind fingerless gloves, homemade tank tops and Pat Benatar. The band’s making plans for some West Coast dates with Pantera. Rock on! You can hear some tracks off the band’s latest album, XTC, at www.metrotimes.com/metropolis/sonic.
Happy means stability to Robb Roy. The guys are back after a European tour supporting their first national release, Heroes and Cocktails. Stable doesn’t always mean stationary, however, and the band ‘s latest album, Happy, is a modern rock whiplash and caress of melody and emotion. Be at the release party Thursday night at Porter Street Station Bar & Grille (1400 Porter St., Detroit, 313-496-1480).E-mail In One Ear at email@example.com.