Alibi V.19 No.3 • Jan 21-27, 2010 

Music to Your Ears

This Week's Super-Gay Music Section

When it rains it pours. And sometimes it rains men. (Hallelujah!) You might notice this week's section is a little gayer than usual and that's partially because both Venus DeMars and Hunx are gracing Albuquerque with their fabulous presences this week. On top of that, I was introduced to a mind-blowing hip-hop jam genre: sissy bounce (see more in Sonic Reducer). Bounce music—a filthy, dirty New Orleans-born rap style that's heavy on call-and-response—has been around since the early '90s and many of its faces happen to be gay. Top underground acts include transsexual rapper Katey Red, as well as Sissy Nobby and Big Freedia. This is not to say that bounce isn't hetero—Juvenile's "Back That Ass Up" is the genre's big hit, for example. For all things bounce, go to nolabounce.com. For all things gay and hip-hop take a spin around gayhiphop.com.

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Spotlight

Spend the Night With Venus

Venus DeMars and All The Pretty Horses complete a trio of Venuses

Motoring around the country in a vinyl-packed 1984 Chevy art van called "The Black Pearl," between shows in Wichita and Phoenix, Minneapolis' Venus DeMars and All the Pretty Horses passed through Albuquerque. Luckily, the travelers made a stop at Alibi headquarters. For 15 years DeMars has been performing in the theatrical style of '70s Bowie-esque glam merged with early '80s Batcave—a combination otherwise deemed "dark glam.” A commanding, leather-clad transgender singer, guitar player, artist, DJ and opera fan, DeMars and her band (completed by LeFreak on bass and T-Rev on drums) are in the midst of a 14-day, six-show vacation and spiritual journey.

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Jazzed

Jazz Giants—Every 4th Friday

Friday Night Jazz gets a makeover at Scalo Il Bar

Nature abhors a vacuum, as the maxim says, and so apparently does the stage at Scalo Il Bar. Every Friday night for several years now, you could depend on finding pianist Stu MacAskie’s trio, with bassist Michael Glynn and drummer Cal Haines, swinging away, house band to the bubbling conviviality. With MacAskie’s departure for points Far East last month, several jazz groups have been sucked into the void he left and will rotate through on Friday nights.

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Hunx likes to eat fried bugs and wishes he could meet Edith Massey.

Music Interview

Gay Bubblegum

Hunx + The Punkettes

If you happen to watch the Style Network, there’s a chance you might have caught an episode of the reality show “Split Ends.” The show’s premise is that two hair stylists with opposite aesthetics do a salon switcheroo for a week. On one episode, Seth Bogart, owner of Down at Lulu’s—an Oakland salon and vintage store—is sent to the affluent Florida town of Cocoa Beach, a place crawling with vapid people and conspicuous consumption. Meanwhile, a flamboyant Latin homo named Martin Ormaza is forced to exist amongst Oakland hipsters. The episode, while silly, is excellent watching due to Bogart’s fun persona. To the horror of the snooty Florida salon staff, Bogart shows up looking freaky in clown bows and gold lamé. I won’t spoil the rest of the show in case you want to watch.

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[click to enlarge]

Flyer on the Wall

Raar!

How hard is it to look at this flyer without an 8-bit tune manifesting in your head like it’s the ’80s and a younger you is in the midst of a restless, Nintendo dream-pestered slumber? Must. Save. The Princess.

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Sonic Reducer

Edmar Castaneda Entre Cuerdas · Galactic Ya-Ka-May · Aloha Home Acres

Jazz harp? Yeah, right. Yeah, right. Colombian harpist Edmar Castaneda brings an original voice burning with creative joy to a most unusual instrument for jazz. Backed by trombonist Marshall Gilkes and drummer Dave Silliman, Castaneda attacks the instrument as if it were the size of a guitar, drawing a breathtaking range of sound and nuance, not to mention impossible counter-rhythms and kick-ass bass lines, from this near–piano-size assemblage of wood and steel. After you get over your astonishment at his technique—can one person really do all that on a harp?—you can begin to savor his compositional skills. Supportive cameos from guitarist John Scofield and vibist Joe Locke. (MM)

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EVENT HORIZON ()

Searching for Something

¡Mayday! • Demrick • DJ Stigmata • Septicemia Records • rap, hip-hop

I’m not sure that the concept of “genre” is really relevant anymore in the realm of music. The days of “pure” music are long gone, and while this might leave some “old-heads” grumbling over message boards about the loss of “real rap” or “real jazz,” I think that for the most part this is a good thing. The possibilities are more abundant than ever before as artists dip their fingers in any number of genres and traditions. ¡MAYDAY! is one group embracing this diversity in their quest for success, with dual emcees Wrekonize and Bernz backed by a full band as they delve into the worlds of rap, rock, reggae, pop and more. With the industry experience of Tech N9ne and his Strange Music label behind them, the Miami-based group boasts a live show that is fast, fun and furious. As part of their promotion for upcoming album Search Party, the group will be bringing that energy on Wednesday, Aug. 23, to Launchpad, the perfect venue to witness their smooth, quickfire wordplay shine alongside an impressive and eclectic array of instrumentals and some silkily-sung hooks. Tickets for this 13+ show run a meager $13, making this a show that the youngest and oldest of us alike can attend and enjoy. 
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