For more than a year and half, Liz Copeland hosted Friday nights at Lush. The night's focus was the exposure of creative music via guest performances by the likes of Soul Clique and Spacelings & Bassheads (among the many) and Liz's own musical mixing. One of the highlights of the last year at Lush was Liz's recent birthday party with guest DJs and partygoers that comprised a who's-who of Detroit's techno underground — and the crowd actually started dancing. This gave Liz the idea to do "DJ Lab," a dance night focusing on Detroit's best up-and-coming talent.
The first night of DJ Lab was its last.
Management apparently wanted something less courageous than an exciting night of adventurous dance music. About an hour into Derek Plaslaiko's set, he was asked by the owner of the bar, "can you play some trance, y'know kinda like Paul Johnson?" After months of the management trying to force her to alter her programming, this was the last straw for Copeland. Being a DJ in this scene is about autonomy — not being an automaton. "It's a commentary on the age-old (story of) cashing in on meaningless consumption over creativity," says Copeland of the affair.
She still plans to do events in the future — and perhaps helm another residency — but she's busy enough being a local media mogul. Her overnight show on WDET (Mon-Fri, midnight-5 a.m.), writing for local publications and a new stint as segment host for WTVS' "Backstage Pass" — where she will be covering electronic music — among other interesting projects, should keep her busy. —BMG
AN END(?) AND A BEGINNING
After five years of beautiful, homemade, Ann Arbor-based musical magic, Treetown's Velour 100 is going west. The band — which, by its own admission, has always had a revolving door policy for membership — has established itself as one of the country's finest ensembles for meditative, heartbreaking, richly textured indie-pop (please consult Velour's latest EP For an Open Sky, on the band's own distant sound recordings label for aural evidence). And now it seems that our loss is Seattle's gain. Head Velour craftsman Trey Many is moving to the space-age Pacific Northwest burg later next month. But longtime area fans and those who've not caught them live before have one last chance. Velour 100 will perform a going-away show-celebration at Ann Arbor's Lonely Hearts Club (211 E. Washington), Friday, Jan. 7 with A2 friends and pop cohorts flashpapr and Maryanne.
Says Many, "It's not the last show ever, but it's our last show for a long time."
Of the move, he notes that "the singer (Rose Thomas) already lives out there and the drummer (Jeremy Dybash) is thinking about moving in about six months, so we're relocating piece by piece to the West Coast."
In clichéd premarriage parlance, don't think of it as losing a son, think of it as the rest of the country gaining a daughter — or something like that. In the meantime, call 734-913-5506 for show info. For more information and to keep up with Velour 100 from a distance, check into www.velour100.com. -CH
Gather round, children, and hear intimations of greatness — hints at the extent to which our hometown punk rock heroes, the Suicide Machines, have reached their potential. I don't want to review the SMs new self-titled full-length for you — the record company wouldn't be very happy with me, now would they? If I let the cat out of the bag — if I even let on that I knew exactly how expertly and ferociously Royce, Dan, Jason and Erin have matured (in a good way) as songwriters and musicians — then you'd have to salivate for two whole months before you could purchase evidence of said excellence. However, one thing you can do to testify at the SM's self-built altar of pop, punk and all things cathartic and joyfully loud is partake in the Suicide Machines' annual holiday-time gigs. While this week's intimate throwdown at Pontiac's 7th House has long-since sold out, tickets are still available if you'd like to get busy with the boys (in a musician-spectator way, you understand) at St. Andrew's Hall, Dec. 30. I'd heartily recommend it. The Suicide Machines have invited fellow punk rock travelers Cold As Life and P.T.'s Revenge to warm up the stage for this all-ages show and up the angst factor (to 11, presumably). Call 313-961-MELT for more info. —CH