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A penny for your thoughts indeed. Around here that would be a raise.

What makes a good blog? I think thematic consistency, a little exhibitionism, and honest writing. I can promise you the last one.

Most of my posts seem to be about music or politics. Some of them are funny. But all of them would love to hear a comment from you.

Oh-- and please welcome God to the APW team. We're thrilled and humbled to serve as His earthly vessel.

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I was born at a relatively young age. Growing up consumed the better part of my childhood. As a young man I chased a lot of girls. But they kept getting away. Then I got older and even slower, so I got married. I've lived in New York City almost since before I moved here. I summer in Manhattan, which is like New York City, but with more humidity.

Here's me, without baby, thinking big thoughts. (Actually, what I'm thinking is, "Hey, these aren't Pringles!") I think I look better with baby.

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Comic Book Heroes
Monday, November 13, 2006
This is the sixth year that David Bash's International Pop Overthrow festival has played in New York. Basically its a series of club concerts, usually about a dozen, each featuring 6 to 8 power pop bands, and chances are you've never heard of any of them. In past years I've discovered currents faves like Jim Boggia, Parallax Project, Andy Mac and Marianne Pillsbury at IPO, and seen killer sets by the likes of the Spongetones, Kennedys, and Flashcubes.

This year I was disappointed when the line-up came out, because there were maybe a handful of bands I knew (including Tan Sleeve, who I know in person.) But as always happens at IPO, I stumbled onto a band that is going to be great.

Before I tell you about them, give a listen: "Hit the Road Jack," the Ray Charles song, covered by Comic Book Heroes. Its a punkish interpretation of the song; they've managed to totally deconstruct it, make it something new-- and yet that new thing still contains something of the core DNA of the original.

Honestly, they were hellfire rockin' live; tight and cool and fun and totally spot ON. I found this recording, which I bought at the show, to be a little tame by comparison (if you can imagine); maybe when they get into the studio for a full length proper debut, they'll be able to better capture that live energy. Or maybe you just have to be there. The guitar player, Sam Sodomsky, is a natural; in some songs he peeled off vintage surf guitar, in the "Not Fade Away" encore, he mined the roots of pure rock'n'roll. They play everything they need to play, and not a note more.

Oh-- and did I mention that these kids are 14 years old?

Check out their MySpace page. Its worth it just for the picture. Their influences include (and this comes right off that MySpace page) the Stones, the Who, Led Zep, U2, the Dead, the Beatles, the Smiths, Cheap Trick, Nirvana, and the Kinks. And they're FOURTEEN!

Now, to be fair, you should know that the drummer's dad is in Foghat. But still... rock'n'roll is way less about technical precision than it is about the feel. It is easy to play rock'n'roll, but a lot more difficult than people think to actually play it well, because you can't learn the feel. When its played well, it seems effortless. These kids feel it, and they can play. And I think they're gonna be famous.

I sure hope they like girls, cuz if they don't, that's going to be a problem. You can already tell by the comments left on the MySpace page, the girls will be around.

Addendum: a snippet of "Hit the Road Jack," live. Lo-fi, but you'll get a sense of the excitement. Tell me that Sam kid on guitar isn't just Jeff Beck cool. (You'll need Windoze Media Player.)


Posted by: --josh-- @ 9:53 AM  

At 2/09/2007 11:46 AM, Anonymous chris g. said...   

I saw them live on the boardwalk in Ocean City, NJ - was walking past, stopped to take a look & stayed through 2 whole sets. Those 'kids' are mesmerizing, talented -- good luck to them, I hope they make it.

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