May 2006


CM's girl

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So dig this, yesterday I finally bought the self-titled album from The Eighteenth Day of May. And I've been listening to it pretty much non-stop today. Then I realized that today is the Eighteenth Day of May. It totally blew my fucking mind, bro.

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In case you didn't get that last part. I'm listening to The Eighteenth Day of May on The Eighteenth Day of May! DUDE! That's some hardcore celestial tarot psychic planets-aligned type of shit!

Today is the Eighteenth Day of May, and I'm listening to a band called The Eighteenth Day of May!

It's 5/18/06 and I'm listening to The Eighteenth Day of May!

Okay, that last one didn't sound as cool as the previous ones.

Anyways, on to the album. In short, the album kicks. First time I heard just a clip of Eighteen Days I was hooked. Jangling guitars and other instruments that you would find in a gypsy camp are layered gorgeously, and several hooks are thrown in for good measure.

They take influences from all over, including some of the late 80s brit-pop bands, old British Invasion types like the Byrds, and somewhere in there the newer bands that were influenced by the previously mentioned influences, like The Brian Jonestown Massacre. I'm sure they're also influenced by some other influences if you know what I'm saying! Know what I'm saying? Get it? Influences? As in under the influence? Whatever, pass the bong.

Now this is probably being grouped into the indie-folk category just because the band is from London and aren't 60+ plus years old, but let's make one thing clear through the haze of catnip smoke: This is straight up folk. Mother Folkin' Folk.

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The Eighteenth Day of May – in hex-a-vision!

Dude, all you rocker types who think long hair and black jeans makes you hard, I got some bad news for you dudes. Folk is the new rock. No longer will people rock out, they will folk out. Headbanging will be replaced by dreadlock twirling, dude. Miller Lite will be replaced with catnip brownies. No longer will people shout out "Freebird!" Folkers will scream "Lady Margaret!"

Eighteen Days (Live) – The Eighteenth Day of May
Hide + Seek – The Eighteenth Day of May
Lady Margaret – The Eighteenth Day of May

Hey, whaddaya know? The Eighteenth Day of May has a Myspace page!

The Eighteenth Day of May is also my friend Celeste's birthday. She has a Myspace page too! But it sucks!

It's the revolution brother, are you in or are you out? Tune in, turn on, and smoke up.

OK, maybe it is. But fret not. Their spirit lives on. Two off-shoots of the indie rock fave have albums out.The Aliens (made up of former Betas John Maclean, Robin Jones and Gordon Anderson) have released their Alienoid Starmonica EP on 7" vinyl and "enhanced CD".

Also, former Beta Band frontman Stephen Mason's King Biscuit Time has an album, Black Gold, coming out on the 15th. In the meantime, they have a single called Kwangchow out on CD and vinyl.

Videos from both bands are available on their sites. And both bands have tour dates coming up in Europe, so if you're lucky enough to live over there, you can still get a little of the magic that was the Beta Band live.

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If ever there was a work of art that deserved such a title;

if ever there was music that could transcend language, age and culture to make an entire auditorium of cats feel they were witnessing something truly remarkable together;

if ever there was a band that could make godless tabbies feel they were at church;

music that could make jaded Gen Xers cry like babies at the simple beauty of it;

a light and graphics show that could make an audience–stoned and sober alike–grab onto their seats for dear life;

music that moved seamlessly from an ethereal dream-state to a deafening cacophony and back again;

a stage with the seemingly endless movement of people wandering from one instrument to another but that never lost its focus;

a drummer from another dimension;

a sound so perfect that you think "It's too good–of course someone made music like this" but so distinct and genre-defying and nonmarketable that you think "Thank god someone bothered to make music like this";

an experience that could make even a hardened rock 'n' roll bitch like me relate to the middle-aged, still-clinging-to-the-'60s hippie sitting behind me;

a rock show that could make us walk from a concert venue into a parking lot, but feel like we had just stepped off a spaceship;

if ever there were such a thing, that thing would be Sigur Ros.