There's not a lot of cross-pollination between Santa Fe and Albuquerque bands, even though we each have scenes that are uniquely our own and in fairly close proximity to each other (40 minutes' drive ain’t much). You don't often see Santa Feans playing in Albuquerque, and even less Burqueños make it out to Santa Fe. (One possible explanation: Santa Fe venues book one band for two- and three-hour sets, and the long gigs pay well. In Albuquerque, we cram three or four bands into a few hours, which cuts into each band's profit. Not many Albuquerque bands have a three-hour set list in their back pocket. Not many Santa Fe bands will drive all the way down here for a $50 gig.) That has to change. But that's just the bands. What's preventing everyone else, the casual listeners, from engaging in the other city's scene?
Imagine being a rap artist and having the privilege to contact your inspirations and all-time hip-hop heroes for a show in your hometown. Hats off to the Internet and networks like MySpace for allowing independent artists to wander the pastures of music in search of building international connections with each other.
In many ways, Ours has made it.
The band is signed to Columbia Records. Its latest album, Mercy (Dancing for the Death of an Imaginary Enemy), was produced by Grammy-winning producer and Columbia co-head Rick Rubin. And the group’s members feel like they’re making the best music of their lives. So why isn’t Ours acting like a band at the top?
Five Minute Sin, Left Brain (in an all-instrumental set), Mad Kings and Poor Man's Ferrari won't bite you ... hard. This Saturday, July 5, at Ralli's Fourth Street Pub and Grill (21+). Ladies free, $3 gents. (LM)
When G. Love tells you to “wiggle like a worm,” you might turn toward your stereo with a condescending glare. But then you’ll probably start wiggling. The tight snare, wailing harmonica, crisp guitar and a dash of piano are tough to resist. It’s especially difficult when the gorge-deep grooves break down the door of your subconscious. G. Love isn’t as cool as his obvious blues influences like John Lee Hooker and Muddy Waters, but who the hell is? Besides, it’s not out to revolutionize music: G. Love & Special Sauce just wants to give you something to dance to. (SM)