Spin the Black Circle

Music journalist Travis Hay drops some knowledge and insight about local and national music news, offers reviews and offers a place for conversation on all things music.
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Posts Tagged ‘Crocodile’

Harvey Danger calls it quits, to play last show at the Crocodile Aug. 29

Wednesday, June 3rd, 2009

Local rockers Harvey Danger have decided to call it a career according to a post on the band’s official Web site. The decision was “totally mutual and utterly amicable.”

The band formed in the offices of The Daily of the University of Washington. Sean Nelson, the group’s vocalist, guitarist Jeff Lin, bassist Aaron Huffman and drummer Evan Sult all met in the mid-1990s while working on The Daily staff. When they decided to form a band, the group’s namesake came from a comic strip that used to appear in The Daily during the 1980s. In fact, on the graffiti-filled orange walls of The Daily’s office a portrait of Harvey Danger — the comic strip character, not the band — is highly visible next to the clock.

The band’s debut album, 1998’s “Where Have All The Merrymakers Gone?,” sold more than 500,000 copies and opened doors for the group including landing opening slots at shows for Green Day, Metallica, Barenaked Ladies and other big-name groups. From there the band’s sophomore record, “King James Version,” didn’t sell well due to record label issues and after the touring cycle behind that record the band members decided to go their separate ways. The group played a few reunion shows in 2004 which lead to the 2004 album “Little By Little” and remained a part of the local scene playing the occasional show around town before the announcement of the band’s break up was made last week.

Like many music fans, Ear Candy has fond memories of the band best known for “Flagpole Sitta.” Back in 2004 I was lucky enough to sit down over the course of two evenings with Nelson while he talked about what was then Harvey Danger’s comeback, which celebrated the group’s 10-year anniversary. I ended up writing this story for the P-I and this story for the University of Washington Daily.

I also once reviewed Harvey Danger for the P-I. The review was of a benefit show for Hurricane Katrina victims at the Showbox and Harvey Danger opened up for Death Cab For Cutie. I will likely forever remember Harvey Danger’s cover of Randy Newman’s “Louisiana 1927,” which is the song they opened their set with that night. Hearing such a meaningful, beautiful cover of that song under the show’s circumstances is something that always stand out in my mind when I think of Harvey Danger. It was a somber and emotional moment where music meant more than just notes and instruments.

Death Cab and Harvey Danger are two somewhat intertwined local indie rock bands. Harvey Danger gave Death Cab its first exposure in Seattle by picking the band to open for them during a show at the Crocodile in 1998.

It’s fitting the band will play its final show at the Crocodile Aug. 29 (ticket prices TBA) not just because of the club’s previously mentioned Death Cab connection but also because back in 2004 Nelson told me this:

“To think, when we first started out our dream was to play a show at the Crocodile. Looking back at all we’ve accomplished is amazing.”

Yes Harvey Danger you did accomplish some amazing things. Thanks for the musical memories.


Win tickets to Destroyer’s solo show at the Crocodile from Ear Candy

Tuesday, May 5th, 2009

This just in from Ear Candy the Web site:

Destroyer, aka the side project of Dan Bejar of Canadian supergroup The New Pornographers, will be playing a rare solo show at the Crocodile Wednesday night (8 p.m.; $12). Ear Candy will be there soaking up the solo set and hopes you will be there too.

To help you get there Ear Candy will be having its first ticket give away. That’s right, Ear Candy is giving away one pair of tickets to Wednesday’s show.

To enter send an email to earcandybeat@gmail.com with your name in the body field and "Destroyer" in the subject line. Entries must be received by 12 p.m. Wednesday. A winner will be drawn at random and notified via email before 5 p.m. Wednesday. Limit one entry per person.

You must be 21 or older to win this contest so please be of drinking age when you enter.

Good luck!


And on the fifth day, I rested

Sunday, April 19th, 2009

moondoogies

I spent the last few days in a hectic state of musical bliss that involved traveling 350 miles, watching nine bands (and being somewhat blown away by one of them while stumbling across another great local group to boot), interviewing a rock star, celebrating the awesomeness that was Record Store Day and hitting up the Experience Music Project’s annual Pop Conference.

I am taking the next 24 hours off to recuperate, but in the meantime here is a listing of some of what you’ll be reading about the rest of the week here:

Portugal. The Man is the best band you aren’t listening to. Find out why I just made that bold declaration in the upcoming review of Portugal. The Man’s show at the Crocodile with H is For Hellgate and Alligators

Death Cab For Cutie is playing in Spokane Friday night at Gonzaga with Ra Ra Riot and Cold War Kids. Ear Candy chatted with Death Cab’s Jason McGeer about headlining Bumbershoot, the band’s new EP and the prospect of unreleased Death Cab being released from the Death Cab vault.

The Moondoggies played a few free shows in Seattle during the weekend. All three were completely different from one another in atmosphere and sound. Read about two of those sets soon.

The Pitchfork lovers orgasm double bill of The Black Kids and Mates of State played Neumos Friday. Their opener, a band out of San Francisco called Judgment Day, took me by surprise.

Saturday was Record Store Day and I felt like a kid on Christmas at the Queen Anne Easy Street Records purchasing lots of limited-edition candy for my ears in the form of some great vinyl.

Saturday was also the third day of EMP’s Pop Conference. Unfortunately I was only able to attend on day, but man the things I learned and the panelists I heard speak were fantastic. My brain hurts (in a good way) just thinking about all the cool conversations that I had the privilege to listen to during my 7 hours at PopCon 2009.

The weekend was capped off by dropping by El Croazon for a late-night set by Texas’ own The Toadies. I wasn’t able to stay for the whole show, but during the 75 minutes I was there they played almost everything off "Rubberneck."

So that’s what you’ll be reading about from me pretty soon. How soon? Well, that all depends on how much free time I have to write and how much I can write without getting exhausted again. In fact, I’m getting pretty tired right now just thinking about writing all of this so I am going to stop writing now.


VIDEOS: Moondoggies, Black Whale, John Roderick, The Kindness Kind at the new Crocodile

Wednesday, February 18th, 2009

If you’re friends with the Crocodile on Facebook or follow the Crocodile on Twitter or read this post over on Sound on the Sound then you already know about the cool videos the Crocodile has been shooting and posting in its Web site.

If you don’t know, here’s what has been going on.

The Crocodile folks, with the help of One Shot Seattle, have been filming performances by local bands at the new and improved venue as it is undergoing construction. They have also been interviewing artists including Rachel Flotard of Visqueen, John Roderick of the Long Winters and others who have all shared their memories of the Crocodile.

You can view all of the videos on the Crocodile’s Web site. Here are a few of my favorites:


Black Whales “Young Blood” from The Crocodile on Vimeo.


John Roderick “Ultimatum” from The Crocodile on Vimeo.


The Kindness Kind “Suckerpunch” from The Crocodile on Vimeo.


The Moondoggies “Old Hound” from The Crocodile on Vimeo.


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Music journalist Travis Hay drops some knowledge and insight about local and national music news, offers reviews and offers a place for conversation on all things music.