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 V.14 No.50 | December 15 - 21, 2005 

Music to Your Ears

Get Your Squawk On—The second installation of the new Rocksquawk.com Concert Series will take place on Tuesday, Dec. 20, at Burt's Tiki Lounge at 8 p.m. Featured performers are When Darkness Falls, Kronic Obsession, The Unemploid, The Giranimals and The Gracchi. What's a rocksquawk, you ask? Log on to www.rocksquawk.com, then come to the show and find out. Doors open at 8 p.m.

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Flyer on the Wall

The Blues are Back on the Corner

... of Carlisle and Central, that is. The Albuquerque Blues Connection will play the first blues show in the history of Nob Hill's newest bar, Harlow's on the Hill, on Friday, Dec. 16, at 9 p.m. It's far from their first time on that stage, though. "The Blues Connection used to be a regular at Club R&B," says ABC bassist Steve Whitman, "so it's sort of momentous that we're back in the room again." Tickets are $6, or $10 per couple. Doors open at 9 p.m. (LM)

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Music Magnified

Hella

with The Black Furies and August Spies

Thursday, Dec. 15; Launchpad (21-and-over), $7: Nor-Cal residents Hella play music that you can brawl to. The sound of shattering glass is all that's missing from the mêlée of turbulent noise that so unambiguously characterizes what Hella has produced. The mishmash of tight snare drum, with its unrelenting speed and intensity, and spastic guitar along with "Castlevania" keyboard occasionally thrown in will have you feeling like a mouse in a dark, trap-filled basement. One gets the impression from listening to Hella that the twosome has been bestowed with enough musical skill to put together a formidable, more traditional band. Hella aren't grade-school kids playing as loud as they can—they're virtuoso crybabies with an axe to grind and an untraditional way of grinding it. From listening to a Hella record, it seems unlikely that their highly randomized "improvisations" could be reproduced for their live shows but, in fact, this is exactly what occurs. With no more deviation than any standard ensemble, the group duplicates their tracks with uncanny attention to details (however unsystematically arrived at the details may be). Open-minded listeners are encouraged to attend as long as they are not prone to epileptic fits.

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Show Up!

Makin' Everything All Right

The Alex Maryol Band with The Eric McFadden Trio

Get ready, Albuquerque. I'm letting you in on a little Santa Fe secret: Alex Maryol. If you don't know who he is—oh baby, you're in for a treat. The Alex Maryol Band has been playing Santa Fe for years: bars, clubs, Warehouse 21, the Thirty Ear Festival and the burning of Zozobra. He released his first CD, They Call Me Lefty, at 18, and has been named "Best Local Musician or Band You Don't Want to Miss—Even on a Tuesday Night" in the Santa Fe Reporter's reader polls three years running. In short, there are some major reasons why the Alex Maryol Band at the Launchpad this weekend is a big deal.

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Holiday Music

Here's To You and Your Wassail, Too

A few suggestions for atypical Christmas music

Christmas music is one of the biggest mysteries of the universe. Some of us, maybe even most of us, think it was specially designed to drive us over the edge during a vulnerable time of year. But according to the laws of capitalism, millions and millions love this smut. Otherwise, the Trans-Siberian Orchestra wouldn't return each year, and every high-profile recording artist wouldn't have lent their own spin to holiday songs.

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Sonic Reducer

Marah A Christmas Kind of Town · Neil Diamond 12 Songs · Eminem Curtain Call: The Hits

Elvis' are good, but, by God, at the moment this is the best Christmas album I've ever heard! Recorded during the holidays last year, both classics and originals are here with a glimmer of indie rock affectation; there are skits and not one but three versions of "Here We Come A Wassailing." The disc looks like a peppermint and the album art consists of a horde of Santas having brewskies at the pub, which can only mean one thing: Marah wants us to have a very merry and boozy Xmas.

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EVENT HORIZON (Friday, Sep 30)

'A Lot About Living'

Alan Jackson • country

As Ludwig von Beethoven once said, “Music is the mediator between the spiritual and the sensual life.” Those words still carry weight, even now: a thousand years later. And you'll find no better example than the incomparable Alan Jackson, whose voice and countenance rival those of the gods, as though he were hewn from the heart of the sun itself. His honky tonk tunes are swords of righteous terror and beauty which melt the eardrums of devotees, lost in reverie as they bathe in the glorious golden ambiance of his mustache. He'll be playing live at the Sandia Resort & Casino on Friday, Sept. 30. Take a gander.
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Chrome Sparks Courtesy of Landon Speers
Landon Speers

EVENT HORIZON (Friday, Sep 30)

Desert Sound

Chrome Sparks • electronic, indie pop

So Chrome Sparks apparently has a few hours open in his schedule to visit ABQ—somewhere in between juggling his gajillion other projects and fulfilling his role as busiest spacey electro-pop composer on the planet. New Mexico seems like the perfect place for those wide-open, expansive tunes of his. Maybe someone can talk him into posting up in the middle of the desert next time. Sound carries further at night and can have a a really spooky resonance. Just saying. This Friday, Sept. 30, he'll be wowing the pants off of us at Sister Bar (which is indoors, unfortunately) starting at 9pm.
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EVENT HORIZON (Monday, Oct 3)

Two i's Are Better Than One

Miike Snow • indie, electro-pop

"I change shapes just to hide in this place, but I'm sure not going to hide from this concert." Ladies and gents, I am happy to report that Miike Snow, the Swedish electro-pop band of your dreams, will be performing at our very own Historic El Rey Theater. Imagine Alt-J and Dan Black created a musically inclined love child. The result would be something like Miike Snow. If that's too foreign an analogy, you'll just have to listen for yourself at 7pm on Monday, Oct. 3. Tickets are just $25-$40 for all ages. The Mezzanine bar will be open for  folks 21+.
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EVENT HORIZON (Wednesday, Oct 5)

Tome-ate-o, Tom-ato

Andrew Jackson Jihad • folk-punk • Diners • surf, indie rock • Kepi Ghoulie • punk folk

Once upon a time, back in 2004, in the distant land of Arizona, there was born a folk-punk band by the name of Andrew Jackson Jihad. It was a mouthful, so they decided to go by the acronym AJJ. Then they decided to formally change their name to that. Soon they'll be at the Launchpad. People in this town like to shit on the folk-punkers, but fuck those jerks. I already bought a ticket to this Launchpad show and I bet I'll be buying band merch, too. This kick-ass event starts at 8pm on Oct. 5.

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