I began writing this week's column with a peculiar sense of exuberance in mind, archly aiming to bring news to the masses of the great and grand Best of Burque Music Showcase which will soon grace our environs. But where to begin? Luckily my dog Phranc intervened and solved the problem for me.
On the way, Jim Morrison leapt out of the radio, clad in leather pants and astral admonitions about this or that happening in Los Angeles, the City of Angels.
The hound had been fascinated and then troubled by an abundance of steak fixings at mi chante the previous evening. Now everything was coming back to haunt him as he paced and farted uncontrollably in my office. I roared home, let him out into the back yard, gave my wife an affectionate kiss on the forehead, grabbed a diet Mountain Dew and frozen burrito from out the fridge, and raced back to Alibi HQ, freshly inspired to discourse upon the future of music in Burque.
On the way, Jim Morrison leapt out of the radio, clad in leather pants and astral admonitions about this or that happening in Los Angeles, the City of Angels. His perverse diatribe gave me time to consider our base. While Los Angeles must have been the center of all things musical in the early 1970’s (it was says my friend the painter Martin Facey, who was at UCLA in those halcyon days) why not imagine a different city of angels as Albuquerque, modeling our own sonic supremacy upon the terrible beauty of a city that gave humanity acts like the Doors—and later on X and Guns N Roses, for that matter?
For the meantime then, abandon the notion that our distance from the ocean portends mediocrity. Prepare yourself as Weekly Alibi fills the high desert with sounds to rival the output and consequently, the actions, of that dude who called himself the Lizard King.
Here’re the deets: On Saturday, Mar. 11, we’ll be hosting the nominees of our reader’s choice Best of Burque Music Poll, using seven venues to demonstrate the vision and veracity of all things dangerously dynamic about music in Dirt City. For a mere Jackson you can visit all the venues (Sister, Burt’s, Launchpad, Moonlight Lounge, Side Effex, Duel Brewing and the KiMo Theater) and thereby show your commitment to raising the level of engagement in these parts—all while the wind blows in the city at night and your mojo rises ... and so on and so forth, ad infinitum (well at least until last call).
That said, here are my concert recommendations for the week; I’ll be there, getting ready for a certain March weekend in the future. Make sure and say “high” to me as you pass through our town’s temples of tuneage now and en el porvenir. Here's a hint about what I really look like: I'm the dude with an eye in the middle of his head and two aluminum antennae protruding from the back of his skull. Serio.
The Doors: “LA Woman”
Friday, Feb. 10, get your intensity goggles and big black boots fitted for a night of genre-defying sonic creation at Sister (407 Central NW) courtesy of Alcest, a band straight outta Bagnols-sur-Céze, which is a place in the south of France. Led by a dude named Neige, this particular rocanrol ensemble—which happens to record on labels like Hyperrealist and Prophecy Productions—does this thing call blackgaze which is what you get when you mix black metal with shoegaze. Alcest not only practically invented this stunning mixture of the heaviest and the dreamiest but blew it up all over the world with recordings like Écailles de Lune and Les Voyage de l'Âme. Interestingly their 2014 effort, Shelter, has string arrangements and melodies which verge on classic shoegaze tactics of the type espoused by Brit bands of the late ‘80s, yet their new record, Kodama, reprises many of the dark forms and aesthetics from which the band originally rose. Providence-based Sludge-masters The Body (Chip King and Lee Buford) provide support while San Fran's Creepers, featuring Dan Tracy and Shiv Mehra of Deafheaven open. For only 18 bucks and an ID that proves you are at least 21, be prepared to stare at the floor, bang your head and wish it was nighttime all the time, while deadly rhythm sections rumble forever and ever in the background.
Mano, after the action you've slithered through the previously Plutonian evening, it would have been nice to set your sights on something kinder for Saturday, Feb. 11, by checking out Willie Nelson and Family at Route 66 Casino's Legends Theater (14500 Central SW). But Wilson’s publicist Elaine Schock told the Associated Press as we went to press that Nelson has canceled several concerts, including his gig in Albuquerque, due to an undisclosed illness. The fact is, Willie has had to cancel all of his upcoming concert dates through February, and will not play publicly again until early March, according to his Facebook page. Todd Edkins, the Director of Entertainment at Route 66 Casino, told Weekly Alibi that refunds for the show are being handled two ways. Credit card purchases, including those done through Hold My Ticket, will be automatically refunded to cardholders within 5-7 business days. Those who bought tickets with cash at the casino can get a refund at the Route 66 Casino box office. For more details, ticket holders can call (505) 352-7925. The cancellations are sad news; we wish Mr. Nelson a speedy and complete recovery, so that he can continue providing entertainment, gravitas and humor through a mix of music that ties the American experience together through several genres.
Willie Nelson: “Roll Me Up and Smoke Me When I Die”
Since that hillbilly music grabbed your soul and would not let go, get comfortable with it one more time on Sunday night, Feb. 13, by ambling over to The Cooperage (7220 Lomas NE) for a concert by The Quebe Sisters. They're a trio of Tejana violinistas whose mission it is to promote, produce and protect the legacy of authentic Texan tuneage of the stringed variety by jamming out passionately and purely in places like the Grand Ole Opry, where announcer Eddie Stubbs told the audience that folks ought to give the Quebes their “undivided attention”—advice which Albuquerque audiences should be prepared to honor when the band (sisters Grace, Sophia and Hulda with a rhythm section comprised of Simon Stipp and Daniel Parr) bring their foot-stomping, evocatively haunting yet awesomely fun and fantastic schtick to town. This is what authentic Americana sounds like, sans pretense and full of joyful noise. Tickets are $22 in advance and $27 on the day of the show; the fiddlin' around begins at 7:30pm.
The Quebe Sisters: “It’s A Sin To Tell A Lie,” live at SXSW 2016