Alibi V.17 No.12 • March 20-26, 2008 
Give us a kiss

Music to Your Ears

Spring Crawl Doesn't Pass Go, Fails to Collect $200

The queries started trickling in a few months ago. (That is to say: The e-mails that made it past my bloodthirsty spamtrap were few. If you didn't hear back from me, try calling instead.) Now they’re torrential. "Spring Crawl" and "Spring Crawl 2008" are two of the most popular searches at alibi.com. You want us to hurry up and get to the point about Spring Crawl—what day we're planning it for, who's on the bill, how to get your band booked, all the important stuff.

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Give us a kiss

Show Up!

Ultraviolet Sound

Testosterone-oozing electro

Talking the talk is always easier than walking the walk, but when the former is done by the members of Ultraviolet Sound, it's still worth listening to.

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Striking the singer/songwriter pose

Music Interview

John Ralston

The singer/songwriter who sometimes wishes he wasn’t

If you've had it with singer/songwriters, you’re not alone: John Ralston’s right there with you. Even though his name appears in big print on every one of his releases, Ralston would rather be viewed as a member of his touring band than seem like an artist obsessed with his own creations. He has a similarly uneasy relationship with his hometown of Lake Worth, Fla. He’s not about to distance himself from his state-of-origin, but he knows the Sunshine State has bred more than its share of the nation’s sonic sore spots.

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Flyer on the Wall

Nightmare Sexual Aerobics, Yay!

Feel your brain cells coalesce into violently happy goo as hypersexual, disturbingly cute, underwear-clad Punk Bunny (Hollyweird, Calif.), the mighty Beefcake In Chains, Bitch Goddess and Amish Noise have their way with you at Atomic Cantina on Friday, March 21. Then they’ll do the bartenders. Free, 21+. (LM)

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Sonic Reducer

The Presidents of the United States of America These Are The Good Times People · Zen Boy & Karma Girl Who They Are and How They Came To Be · Beach House Devotion

The last time you heard The Presidents of the United States of America (POTUSA) was probably an election year—1996, in fact, before they were dropped and shoved under the rug by Columbia Records. Between then and now, the band broke up, released a few independent albums, partially regrouped in 2000 and finally reunited in 2004. These Are The Good Times People tackles just about every genre, including swing, punk, folk and even a twangy touch of country. This album has its moments of quirky lyricism, but the overall content matches the music exceptionally. Labeling POTUSA as a novelty band would be misguided. (JH)

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Courtesy of the Artist

EVENT HORIZON ()

Their Kindness is Charade

Crystal Castles • electropunk, synth pop, witch house

Remember the thing called Witch House? How about darkwave? The constant bifurcation of artistic paths in the field of electronic music can be damnably confusing and irritating, as well as rewarding and helluva lot of fun too—as long as you pick the right band. When adherents of these sorts of genres aren't busy sorting their rainbow-colored toe socks and looking for tubes of Vick's Vaporub to snatch up at the local Walmart, then it's a pretty fair bet that they are listening to the likes of Crystal Castles, a duo of Canuck electro-arhats who've made their mark in the music world with a febrile and spooky glitchiness that has outlasted any names critics might apply in favor of an honestly, intimidatingly pure exploration of sounds that make humans dance and rejoice as they swirl around the very noisy and icy maelstrom of life and death. Ethan Kath and Edith Frances, AKA Crystal Castles, perform live in Burque on Thursday, Oct. 19. Viewed as an opportunity to joyfully and ferociously embrace the void, this ought to be a damn good show, but don't blame me if you can't remember your name afterwards.
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Courtesy of the Artist

EVENT HORIZON ()

Special Beat Service

The English Beat • ska

Here's a brief on a band with three names, but unlike Eliot's bunch, these dudes are not a coterie of cats. At home across the pond, they're known as the Beat. In the land down under, kindly refer to them as the British Beat. Here in 'Merica, we call them the English Beat. But no matter what you call them, this estimable ensemble that still includes founder and guitarist Dave Wakeling—but not vocalist Ranking Roger—was partially responsible for the upsurge in popularity that two-tone ska saw on both sides of the Atlantic during the '80s and '90s. With a retinue of classic, upbeat jams like “Monkey Murders,” “Spar Wid Me” and “Save It for Later,” the band's touring the states again, impressing OG ska lovers as well as the next generation of horn-crazy youth with their combination of crazy stage antics and terrific tuneage. You can catch the outfit live here at the Duke City on Sunday, Oct. 22, at the Historic El Rey Theatre, but don't worry you don't need checkerboard pants or a smart little hat to enjoy this gig—just make sure those great big feet of yours are rested and ready to dance.
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