J ust when you think the world is going
straight to hell with American soldiers abusing Iraqi prisoners as
King George praises the brilliance of Donald Rumsfeld and that
dimwitted blonde winning the latest "Survivor," something brilliant
and life re-affirming happens. In the space of the same week that
the best Canadian rock trio ever, Rush, celebrated its 30-year
anniversary, Boston Red Sox outfielder Manny Ramirez finally proved
to the world that he was a lazy player by becoming an American
citizen. Now, when accused of not hustling after a foul ball or
routine line drive Ramirez can simply say, "Eh, whadda ya want? I'm
an American," instead of blaming his ankle or the sun.
The big story, though, is the fact that last week saw the 30th
birthday of Rush. It seems like only 22 years ago, I met some
kid at his locker to fence stolen copies of the Rush albums
"2112" and "Exit Stage Left." As a band that I loved at so young
turns 30, I'm left with one profound thought. Jeezus, am I old.
Such a realization can lead one to drastic measures like, God
forbid, spending the family savings on a red Corvette. For yours
truly, such a rude awakening has resulted in a resolute vow
to attend every event you will now read about with a vengeance
that will make 23-year-olds dizzy.
Get plenty of sleep
because your presence is required at the Abbey Theatre on Friday,
May 14. The Brown
Brothers , one of
Durango's best and most reclusive bands, will be celebrating the
release of "Songs From the Lost Generation" starting at 8 p.m.
Astute readers of "The Goods" may recall a review of the album a
few weeks back. The review said that "Songs From the Lost
Generation" was a great reason to be satisfied with the state of
local music. Just when you have finally been fed up with yet
another cover of "Truckin'" or "Born to be Wild," the Brown
Brothers show up to provide the antidote. Once again, the show
starts at the Abbey at 8 p.m.
You'll want to rest up
Saturday because Sunday, May 16, is the Taste of Durango . In a fashion Durango loves most,
Main Avenue will be closed for several downtown blocks while nearly
every one of Durango's eateries puts its best face on its wares
while the rest of us graze and drink and then eat some
The Taste of Durango is
a lot like the "tastes of" or "bites of" many other towns and
cities host; kids' activities and live music will abound while
patrons drown their sorrows in a sea of hot wings, sushi rolls and
mojitos. The afternoon's proceeds will benefit the Manna Soup
Kitchen, so be prepared to leave a single greenback at the door or
come with a can of food. And please leave the lima beans and
pumpkin pie mix at home, make it Dinty Moore instead.
Website of the Week: If, like me, you can't get enough pop
culture criticism, then you need to do one of two things. If you
are shallow and impressed by hairdos and the boyfriends of
kiddie-pool women, then the E network is for you. Conversely, if
you prefer to dig deeper than the random Britney Spears video, then
have a go at www.theonionavclub.com.
The Onion AV club
delivers weekly reviews of
albums, books and movies while totally downplaying the idea that
someone that visits an online site called an "AV club" might be a
real dork screw. Acceptable, the folks who write music for
The Onion are generally spot on.
Album of the week: There is surely not a more ubiquitous
musician working today than Jon Langford . This Welshman turned Chicagoan has
fingers in so many musical pies he'd embarrass Homer Simpson. As a
principal member of the 30-year-old-ish art-punk Mekons and younger
y'all-ternative Waco Brothers and as master of the three ring
circus known as the Pine Valley Cosmonauts, Langford has lost the
gift of surprise. Add to the pile Sir Jon's second solo album and
it seems that Langford is related to a new release each
"All the Fame of Lofty
Deeds" is an album that features Langford re-working some old
favorites. "Hard Times" and "Nashville Radio" both get new,
stripped-down arrangements while the album's few covers aptly cross
the roots spectrum. The record closes with the perfect combination
of revisited songs. First comes Langford's take on The Old 97's
"Over the Cliff," a defiant stand-in-the-face of modern country as
well as an admission of potential failure. After that? The classic
"Trouble in Mind" comes across as an admission of self knowledge
and guilt. All said, that is what makes Langford so great: He can
champion classic American music in a way that makes him out to be
the literary genius that he is.
"All the Fame of Lofty
Deeds" is the smartest album Langford will release for another
couple months until the next one.
Is the world going to