thedonproject
(aqueduct), Bugs in Amber, Picoso, King of Hawaii, Grand Hallway South Lake Union Block Party
Review
Published 08-08-2008 on my old wordpress blog.

As much as I hate microsoft, I thank them for the opportunity to go see a free show this afternoon. I was pretty psyched for two of the bands, stuck there for two others, and left before the one i don’t like that much played. So here’s how it went.

The South Lake Union Block Party (hereafter referred to as the SLUBP) is probably still rocking as i type. they were slated to watch Juno in about a half hour. At any rate, the SLUBP was 1/3rd hippies, 2/3rds normal people with kids, a few weirdos and one asshat. More on that guy later, but before i met that guy i was pretty stoked to see a random bunch of people hanging out to watch some music happen. There were also some local restaurants offering samples for a dollar. that dollar was then donated to various charities, like FareStart, for example. had there been more vegetarian options, i may have tried more than just the tiramisu and a soda. this is a fun event and i’ll probably go next year if they have decent bands again. particularly if it’s free.

Grand Hallway
Speaking of decent bands, Grand Hallway is one. Their stuff is super sad and super rad all at once. Which put them sort of out of place to open a block party. Their sound didn’t really work on a big old outdoor stage. The few people that were there definitely were not the Grand Hallway type. I don’t ever want to take pictures at shows and post them because it will take away from me enjoying the music, but before the show started, I took this one to show how desolate it was at 3 in the afternoon. don’t worry, about 20 more people showed up by the end of the grand hallway set. and that’s the best part of the set. i’ll write the line here again because i love it so much, particularly how it’s sung, “i spend most every night wondering how you’ve been.” it’s so good at the end of their melancholy set, just when you think things can’t get any sadder. it would have been even better in a smaller venue.

King of Hawaii
it’s a popular myth that jimi hendrix said that surf rock was the worst music ever, basically. myth or not, this sentiment is correct. here’s a picture of a dog.

Picoso
I don’t pretend to know enough about latin music to be able to do justice to what was happening on stage. However, I did correctly identify the trumpet player as the one that accompanied Miss Johanna Kunin at her recent show at The Nectar. One point for me.

Side note: As I was wandering looking for vegetarian fare of some kind between picoso’s set and the next one, I saw Mr. Rocky Votolato, his wife and maybe his mom roaming the block party. I wanted to thank him for his fine work at Neumo’s but did not because I’ not sure i’d want to be bothered by some dude when i’m just trying to get some food for the family. They hung out and watched Bugs in Amber, of course.

Bugs in Amber
I swear I saw bugs in amber about five years ago at a house party on 25th near lake city way. But I now think i’m mistaken. I had worked up this pseudo memory into something magical. There was definitely a band at that house show that was out of this world amazing, but i’ll never recall who it was. So, I walked into the SLUBP with high expectations for Bugs in Amber. I left with mixed feelings. At times, I was pretty impressed. Other times I was bored. Now, this may be because of an incident that happened during the second or third song. This guy was smoking right next to me and just flung his cigarette in the grass (where people would be sitting to watch Juno [the movie] shortly). In my current effort to be more outgoing, I asked him if he was just going to leave that there and he was incredulous. “Do you want me to pick it up?” “Yes, I’d appreciate that.” “My name’s Burl [i think that’s what he said], what’s yours?” “Don.” “Nice to meet you, but I’m not picking that up.” ———————————— underneath those dashes are all the swear words you can imagine spoken with all the force that can be mustered from someone with a lot of built up anger to be released, however there was really just nothing but more anger to pile up and transform into horrible daydreams of violence against another person. i don’t understand how people can choose to be such bastards. it’s such a foreign concept to me. i guess that’s why i’m perpetually getting crapped on by every single person except my family. but i just can’t be a dick to people like that. so angry. so that may have ruined my impression of Bugs in Amber. let’s talk about something good instead. how about Rudy Gajadhar. amazing drummer, even though he was in Gatsby’s American Dream for a while. seriously, amazing. remember when he was in Waxwing? that was awesome. actually, when the Bugs in Amber kids started rocking out, that’s when it started getting good. when they were going slow, it was, honestly, a bit boring. and i could have done without the keyboards. an orchestra maybe, but keyboards no. Sonny Votolato’s voice was pretty good and had moments of greatness. but overall the band was just not connecting with me. perhaps it was the venue again. i’d go see them again in a smaller place, i think.

no, i did not stick around for aqueduct. they’re not my type.

finally, to top off my fine adventure, i wanted to buy a Bugs in Amber CD but no one ever came over to sell me one and the bus i wanted was on the way so i left. only to miss the bus by about 30 seconds. and i thought i was being such a good person by taking the bus in the first place. shows you what i get for being good.

in summation, the SLUBP has potential. i’ll probably go back. at the very least, it was an adventure i won’t forget about for quite some time.

Keywords: Bugs in Amber, Grand Hallway, King of Hawaii, Picoso, show, South Lake Union Block Party
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