Thursday, July 29, 2010

TnJ 129 (7/29/10)


PRIMUS – the Antipop (1999 Antipop)
LOTUS – Monochrome (2009 Oil on Glass EP)
THE BLACK CROWES – Aimless Peacock (2009 …Until the Freeze)
JOSHUA PANDA – Rosie (2010 Joshua Panda)
TIM O’BRIEN – Not Afraid o’Dyin’ (2010 Chicken & Egg)
DAVID HIDALGO & LOUIE PEREZ – Big August Moon (2010 the Long Goodbye)
PO’ GIRL – Gasoline (2008 Deer in the Night)
FRAZEY FORD – Blue Streak Mama (2010 Obadiah)
ANDERS OSBORNE – Had My Reasons (1999 Living Room)
THE WHITE STRIPES – 300 M.P.H. Torrential Outpour Blues (2007 Icky Thump)


UMPHREY’S McGEE – Bridgeless > Plunger > Glory > Plunger > Bridgeless (3/6/07 Fox Theater, Boulder, CO)
PHISH – Possum > Weigh > All Things Reconsidered (1993/2008 Live at the Roxy Box Set)

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Whew! That second hour was epic (^_^)

Can I just throw out a big THANKS to the cosmos, the bands, the labels, and the radio heads in Santa Fe for allowing this show to happen every week? I just love getting down in the groove with y'all, and thanks to everyone for tuning in.


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Thursday, July 22, 2010

TnJ 128 (7/22/10)


moe. – Spine of a Dog (1992/1999 Fatboy)
HOT CLUB SANDWICH w/ DAN HICKS – Cow Cow Boogie (2010 And If Only)
STRING CHEESE INCIDENT – Footprints (8/2/03 North Plains, OR)
B-SIDE PLAYERS – Micaela (2007 Fire in the Youth)
PRESERVATION HALL JAZZ BAND w/ ANI DiFRANCO – Freight Train (2010 Preservation – An Album to Benefit Preservation Hall & the Preservation Hall Music Outreach Program)
SOL DRIVEN TRAIN – Cake (2010 Believe)
ALLMAN BROTHERS BAND – Dreams (1992 An Evening with the Allman Brothers Band – First Set)


MY MORNING JACKET – Lullabys, Legends and Lies (2010 Twistable, Turnable Man – A Musical Tribute To The Songs Of Shel Silverstein)
D NUMBERS – Crokai (2010 Onda)
FRANK VIELE & the MANHATTAN PROJECT – Right in Front of Me (2010 Neon Lights)
BLACK PRAIRIE – Ostinato del Caminito (2010 Feast of the Hunters’ Moon)
GRATEFUL DEAD – Jack Straw (2010 Road Trips Vol. 3, No. 2, 11/15/71 Municipal Auditorium, Austin, TX)
DARRELL SCOTT – Long Wide Open Road (2010 A Crooked Road)
TURBINE – Eddy the Sea (2010 Sounds in the Hall, 6/20/09 Telluride Bluegrass Festival)
ZAC BROWN BAND – Who Knows (2010 Pass the Jar – Live from the Fabulous Fox Theatre in Atlanta, c. 2009)
OZOMATLI – Dos Cosas Ciertas (2005 Live at the Fillmore)

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Tuesday, July 20, 2010


"Toast" had the honor of interviewing Matt Vasquez and Kelly Winrich from Long Beach, CA's DELTA SPIRIT today. They played 3 songs and were generally very pleasant guys who obviously love what they do.


They play live tonight (7/20/10) with a full band @ the Santa Fe Brewing Company (^_^)

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CONCERT REVIEW – DELTA SPIRIT – 7/20/10 Santa Fe Brewing Company, Santa Fe, NM

Delta Spirit is a sonic juggernaut.

This is the best bar band to come along in 10, maybe 20 years. Hailing originally from San Diego, CA, and now holed up in Long Beach, Delta Spirit is a band born to perform. They play with as much energy for 20 people as they might for 20,000 – something I’ve heard said about only a handful of bands in rock’s history.

I recall very much enjoying their new album, History from Below, upon first listen some weeks ago but, like all good bands, their songs reveal themselves as significantly more magnificent live – like the album cuts are sheepish-yet-solid Clark Kent and their live counterparts are Superman, rippling with unlikely musculature.

Tonight’s set was a spectacular tapestry of several new songs, a few old songs, and a couple of surprising covers. Oh, and one bar fight. Not the band’s fault, I’m sure, though they did steer most songs toward frenzy, and maybe this one blonde beef-head was just one susceptible microbrew over the line. The band kindly but firmly insisted he exit the venue, stage right, then kept right on playing, unfazed.

Their current single, Bushwick Blues, came near the beginning of the set, commandeering our attention and rarely letting it waver for the next 90 minutes. They did indulge themselves with detours into quietude and melancholia throughout the night, but always whipped the energy back to a foamy froth. It’s called dynamic range, young bands of the world – look into it.

Front-man Matt Vasquez has a unique vocal quality – able to shift from desperate, quivering prettiness to a high-grade, bestial yowl at the drop of a hat. The curious thing about this is how often he did it, and how effortless it all seemed. Their reading of St. James Infirmary bore an earthy, almost malevolent Tom Waits-iness.

The band admitted during a radio interview earlier that day they’d been playing most of the “new” songs for at least 2 years (during their extensive support tour for full-length #1 – Ode to Sunshine) before recording them for full-length #2 – History from Below, and it really showed on one of my favorites from the “new” batch: White Table. Though the arrangement wasn’t technically different in any drastic way, it did churn its way into a stunning multi-instrumental crescendo which put the album version to shame.

Wave upon wave of sound crashed against us, the undertow threatening to pull us into bottomless waters if we didn’t keep an eye on the shore. At least 2 members of Delta Spirit – Matt Vasquez and Kelly Winrich – are multi-instrumentalists (there seemed to be a fifth member not credited on the album, and if introductions were made from the stage, I somehow missed them), which allows each song to find its own unique arrangement or, presumably, for each arrangement to morph night after night.

Whether Vasquez takes it upon himself to preface certain songs with pithy anect-oids because he’s the front-man, or if he’s the front-man because he takes it upon himself to preface certain songs with pithy anect-oids I can’t say. He did preface a tease of Pink Floyd’s Wish You were Here by taking over piano duties from Kelly Winrich, and told of a time which is as likely to have actually happened to him as it was to have happened to any of us, when he was tripping in the bathtub and came to the conclusion that it was quite possibly the perfect song. Wish You Were Here segued flawlessly into their Ode to Sunshine radio hit, Trashcan, surprisingly well. Vasquez stayed on piano for this one, while Winrich picked up a modified trashcan lid to play additional percussion. Maybe that’s why the song’s called Trashcan, I don’t know. There wasn’t a pithy anect-oid about it.

Vasquez prefaced 9/11 by name-dropping Howard Zinn and encouraging us to read A People’s History of the United States, if we hadn’t already. This might’ve been received as overly-liberal left-wingery elsewhere, but luckily for Vasquez, Santa Fe is a blue city in a red state.

When he introduced the plaintive Vivian, Vasquez told about how he wrote it while he was on the road and got word that both of his beloved grandmothers had died, tingeing the song with a self-revealing emotional twinge. Vasquez seems fearless about wearing his heart on his sleeve. Either he’s too young to know better, or he’s just a strong motherf***er.

Delta Spirit’s music – especially live – is monstrous, epic, delicate, dissonant, and elegant; sometimes all at once. “Butterfly sledgehammers” is a term that keeps returning to me after the fact. Maybe their opening and closing house p.a. selections indicate where they’d like to be placed in the framework of rock’s living mythology – somewhere between Wilco and The Band. Earlier in the day, during their radio interview, Vasquez admitted the reason for playing music in front of people is “to convince them that you’re the best at it,” and I definitely came away a believer. It’s too bad in a way that their songs and their presentation are so monumentally good, because this is what simultaneously makes them the best bar band going, but also most likely to advance to arena gigging (à la U2, or Springsteen, or Panic, or KOL) in the near future.

In the end, as I remarked to an acquaintance in the audience, it was great just to hear some good old rock ’n’ roll for a change.

~ Chris “Toast” Diestler

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UMPHREY'S in ABQ !!!!!

UMPHREY'S McGEE is booked for Tuesday, 9/28/10, at the Historic El Rey Theater in ABQ (^_^) Hot damn!

Tickets on sale THIS FRIDAY (7/23/10) to the general public for cash only at Bookworks, Grumpy's Guitars at 5015 Lomas NE, and Newsland across from UNM.

You can also get tickets with your credit or debit card by calling 1-866-I-GET-TIX (1-866-443-8849) or visiting Service charge, facility fee, and/or handling fee may apply for advance tickets.

This is an all ages event.

visit for more info

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Monday, July 19, 2010

UMPHREY'S in ABQ ?!?!?

Word on the street is that Chi-town poly-rock kings Umphrey's McGee will be playing the Historic El Rey Theater in Albuquerque this fall! Nothing's set in stone yet, but I'll let you know when I get the details...


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Thursday, July 15, 2010

TnJ 127 (7/15/10)


KELLER & the KEELS – Pepper (2010 Thief)
DANGERMUFFIN – Moonscapes (2010 Moonscapes)
TEA LEAF GREEN – Rattlin’ (2010 Looking West)
ROBERT HUNTER – Terrapin Medley (1980 Jack O’Roses)
ALVIN YOUNGBLOOD HART & JOHN POPPER – Devil Got My Woman (2001/2010 Warren Haynes presents – the Benefit Concert, Vol. 2)
DELBERT McCLINTON & DICK50 – People Just Love to Talk (2010 Acquired Taste)
DELTA SPIRIT – Salt in the Wound (2010 History from Below)


MARCO BENEVENTO – Atari (2008 Invisible Baby)
GALACTIC – Friends of Science > Boe Money (2010 Ya-Ka-May)
OZOMATLI – Yeah, Yeah, Yeah, Yeah (2010 Fire Away)
THE MOTHER HIPS – Young Charles Ives (2009 Pacific Dust)
JOHN BUTLER TRIO – Good Excuse (4/24/07 Le Grand Rex, Paris, France)
THE HUE – Like Lines (2009 Beyond Words)
BROKEN BELLS – the High Road (2010 Broken Bells)
FLANGER – Outer Space/Inner Space (2001 Outer Space/Inner Space)
MATT BUNSEN and the BURNERS – Drugs Make Me Happy (2009 Greatest Hits)

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Thursday, July 8, 2010

TnJ 126 (7/8/10)


BLACK CROWES – Movin’ on Down the Line (2009 Warpaint Live, 3/20/08 the Wiltern, Los Angeles, CA)
WALTER TROUT – May Be a Fool (2010 Common Ground)
BUCKWHEAT ZYDECO – When the Levve Breaks (2009 Lay Your Burden Down)
PAPA GROWS FUNK – Junker Man (2006 Live at the Leaf)
DELBERT McCLINTON & DICK50 – Until Then (2009 Acquired Taste)
TOM WAITS – Get Behind the Mule (2009 Glitter and Doom Live)
MODEST MOUSE – Gravity Rides Everything (2000 the Moon & Antarctica)


PHISH – Slave to the Traffic Light (2009 the Clifford Ball DVD box set, 8/17/96 Plattsburgh, NY)
DRIVE-BY TRUCKERS – Daddy Learned to Fly (2010 The Big To-Do)
TOM PETTY & the HEARTBREAKERS – Don’t Pull Me Over (2010 Mojo)
GOGOL BORDELLO – Immigrant Punk [demo] (2009 Live from Axis Mundi)
ALI BABA’S TAHINI – Unity (2010 Living Room)
NATHANIEL RATELIFF – Boil & Fight (2010 In Memory of Loss)
BÉLA FLECK w/ SAM BUSH, JERRY DOUGLAS, GABE WITCHER, BRIAN SUTTON, and MARK SCHATZ – Same Old River (9/5/99 Strawberry Festival, Yosemite, CA)

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Back in the saddle live this week. Last week’s session was a repeat from 12/20/04, featuring our “Best of the Boots” picks at the time. Hope you enjoyed the trip through the wayback machine. For the curious, here’s what Jen and I played all those years ago…


GALACTIC – Intro > Shibuya (5/1/04 State Palace Theater, New Orleans, LA)
MOFRO – How Junior Got His Head Put Out (6/23/02 Bonnaroo Music Festival, Manchester, TN)
PHIL LESH & FRIENDS – Blue Sky (7/27/01 PNC Bank Arts Center, Holmdale, NJ)
LEFTOVER SALMON – Up On the Hill Where We Do the Boogie (8/10/02 Mishawaka Amphitheater, Bellvue, CO)
YONDER MOUNTAIN STRING BAND – If You’re Ever in Oklahoma > Elzic’s Farewell > If You’re Ever in Oklahoma (9/1/01 Thirsty Ear Festival, Bonanza Creek Movie Ranch, SF, NM)


STRING CHEESE INCIDENT – Desert Dawn (6/19/03 Telluride Bluegrass Festival, Telluride, CO)
WIDESPREAD PANIC – Chilly Water > Barstools and Dreamers > “Satisfied” rap > “Time Waits” rap > Chilly Water (12/31/99 Philips Arena, Atlanta, GA)
GRATEFUL DEAD – Scarlet Begonias > Fire on the Mountain (5/8/77 Cornell University, Ithaca, NY)

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Monday, July 5, 2010


I just finished my second trip to Alaska and have a few notes to share for the curious traveler.

The sun doesn't set in Alaska (at least not that I saw) this time of year. I arrived on the solstice, a.k.a. the longest day of the year, and bars appeared to be open all night long for a celebration. The pictures I've posted of myself here weren't taken at midnight - but they COULD HAVE BEEN.

Of course, it's the exact opposite in the winter: the sun never rises. I suspect if I lived there year-round I'd have to hibernate all winter and stay up all summer just to match my body's rhythm with the environment's.

Denali National Park is astonishingly beautiful, but this time of year there are too many tourists and not enough wildlife if you ask me. When I went in early May one year, the Nenana River was still frozen (and I mean SOLID), and I saw a moose, a bear, and herds of caribou roaming free. Now it's tourist season. Don't get me wrong, Alaska is beautiful this time of year - it's just less distinguishable from similarly gorgeous places in Colorado, or Minnesota, or British Columbia this time of year.

Thanks to my very good friends Don and Kassandra and Lonnie for putting me up and just putting up with me during my visit. I had a great time and hope to go back again soon, at a time when the tourists have mostly dissipated (^_^)

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TnJ 125 (6/24/10)

My thanks to guest toast (and KBAC mastermind) IRA GORDON for stepping in while I was galavanting across the last frontier. Anyone who knows of Ira's fondness for The Boss shouldn't be surprised he brought an all-Springsteen set list to play (^_^)

Hour 1
Born to Run - Roxy, L.A. 10/17/75
Badlands - Sports Arena, L.A. 4/16/09
The Fever - Winterland, S.F. 1978
Seeds - Stockholm 6/4/09
Johnny 99 - Stockholm 6/4/09
Ghost of Tom Joad - Stockholm 6/4/09
Ramrod - Madison Sq Garden, N.Y. 7/1/00

Hour 2
Light of Day - Shoreline Amphitheater, Mountain View, Ca 5/3/88
Gonna Fly Now / Rosalita - Spectrum, Philadelphia 10/14/09
Thunder Road - Civic Auditorium, Pittsburgh 4/26/00
The Rising - Fleet Center, Boston 2002
Glory Days - Berlin 7/22/88
Trapped - Omaha 10/26/99
She's the One - Fleet Center, Boston 2002
London Calling - Live in Hyde Park 2009 DVD

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