Friday, January 27, 2006

The Mars Volta and Jon Theodore

Sir Jon Theodore recently sent me an e-mail concerning Letter Never Sent, it went roughly as follows:

from: a badass drummer with a badass band
to: FJDelgado

hi FJDelgado,
thanks for the kind words.
nice blog dude.
thank you for being so kind.

The Mars Volta are an incredibly talented rock band in the spirit of Yes, the Who, Rush, and Jane's Addiction, but with a unique approach and sound. I've been following them for quite some time because their drummer,
Jon Theodore, is the son of a friend of my father. Jon grew up around here (ten minutes away from me) before embarking on his trip to the West Coast and a rock band with big expectations.

Mars Volta's newest full length release, Frances the Mute, has gotten a good deal of critical praise, including a glowing four-star review from Rolling Stone, and they've already been the supporting act for the Red Hot Chili Peppers and System of a Down on major U.S. tours.

Frances also made Rolling Stone's Top 50 Records of 2005 list in the December 2005 edition - the issue with King Kong on the cover - and Spin magazine frequently refers to the Mars Volta as a leader among the younger generation of musically virtuous bands.

Jon also has a reputation as an amazing drummer; many magazines and fellow musicians consider him to be one of the very best to surface in a long time. In fact, Lars Ulrich of Metallica, himself a pretty damn good rock rhythm-section man, has called Jon Theodore the best drummer he's seen in ten years (scroll to bottom).

I've e-mailed Jon a handful of times and he seems like a down-to-earth guy, and it's definitely interesting to watch a band evolve and get glimpses of that from one of its members first-hand. While their recorded and live material may be difficult for the casual music fan - Frances the Mute is only 5 songs despite being a full-length LP - this band is without a doubt worth checking out if you enjoy concept albums and musicianship of high level.

More blogs about Jon Theodore.

The Mars Volta official website
Windows Media stream of
"The Widow" here

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

You Know The One

You know the one. You pick it out from the store shelf with that feeling that you have hit gold. You shell out the $15 with some trepidation (cause you know it would have been cheaper by mail or the Indie kids' endorsed iTunes) and immediately upon leaving the store struggle to tear the wrapper off the fucker. You jump in the car hit the CD button and load it up. The volume is adjusted to 11 and you are enveloped in the sound of something you will always cherish. You know this doesn’t happen often so you savor every track and it is your constant play for the next week at least.

Well, the fucker I am talking about is
Comet Gain’s new release ‘City Fallen Leaves’ (Kill Rock Stars). Maybe it is how I was brought up on rock ‘n roll? Growing up in the sixties and listening to my oldest brothers record collection (when he wasn’t around to catch me). The Beatles, The Kinks, The Stones – I grew up on British rock ‘n roll. Maybe that is why I am a sucker for those cockney tinged vocals, that Merseybeat sound. Turned on by Comet Gain’s excellent 2002 release ‘Realistes’ I was setup, I knew I was in for a ride with ‘City Fallen Leaves’. Taking everything that was good from those days of yore, polishing them up but leaving that sweet production feel, the Gain deliver the goods over and over. Yes, it feels, sounds like something from the past but it is even more relevant today in a sometimes over commercialized cultural wasteland of music we survive in. I love this band, I love their music and best of all I love that British (English) accent over the top of those keen guitars, pianos, organs --- I love it all.

Thank God for Comet Gain….

This one is classic Comet Gain all the way….

Bored Roar (mp3)

I will try to be happy…..

Draw A Smile Upon An Egg (mp3)

The punk got fucked by his bad luck…

The punk got fucked (mp3)

This one wavers, bends and then kicks it at the 2 minute mark..

This English Melancholy (mp3)


Tuesday, January 24, 2006

rock concerts (UPDATE)

The following is a non-comprehensive list of rock concerts I've attended since I was a teenager - at least the ones off the top of my head (and that I was glad I went to).

R.E.M. (4 times)
Dave Matthews Band
(12 times)


Foo Fighters (3 times)

David Gray
Beastie Boys
A Perfect Circle

Black Rebel Motorcyle Club
the Rapture
the Strokes

Franz Ferdinand
the Hives
(5 times)

Toad the Wet Sprocket
the Wallflowers
Stone Temple Pilots (twice)

Better Than Ezra
(5 times)

Burning Brides

Elliot Smith

Grant Lee Buffalo (twice)

Red Hot Chili Peppers
the Offspring
the Verve
Kings of Leon

Hot Hot Heat
Local H
We Are Scientists
Our Lady Peace
Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers (twice)

the Rustic Overtones

(5 times)

Pearl Jam
Rage Against the Machine
the Raveonettes

the Oranges Band
Clap Your Hands Say Yeah

Herbie Hancock and the Headhunters
Andrew WK
Vertical Horizon

Sons and Daughters
Green Day (twice)
Kaiser Chiefs

Sonic Youth

Ari Hest

the Get Up Kids
Blues Traveler

What's the best show you've ever seen, and why?

Monday, January 23, 2006

Rock & Roll Ain't Noise Pollution

Hello there..... It is with much gratitude that I accept the offer from my Maryland blogging friend FJ Delgado to contribute on his excellent blog Letter Never Sent. I have been an avid follower of Letter... ever since the day that Sir Delgado left a comment on my late blog Grey Will Fade. Anyone who has an all time best rock band list as this, is someone D will call his friend. Thanks Bro and never ever stop rockin'.


All tracks via yousendit and good for 7 days or so.....

Rock And Roll Ain't Noise Pollution (mp3-AC/DC-Back In Black)

Whatever Happened To My Rock And Roll (mp3-BRMC-BRMC)

Let's Do Rock Steady (mp3-The Bodysnatchers-Two Tone Collection:A Checkered Past)

Clash City Rockers (mp3-The Clash-Live:From Here To Eternity)

I Want Rock & Roll (mp3-Frank Black & The Catholics-Pistolero)

I Love Rock 'n' Roll (mp3-The Jesus & Mary Chain-Munki)

Road To Rock & Roll (mp3-Joe Strummer & The Mescaleros-Rock Art & The X-Ray Style)

Rock & Roll (mp3-Led Zeppelin-IV)

Rock 'n' Roll Lies (mp3-Razorlight-Up All Night)

Rock 'n Roll (mp3-The Sounds-Living In America)

Life Is Killing My Rock 'n' Roll (mp3-Singapore Sling-Life Is Killing My Rock 'N' Roll)

Sunday, January 22, 2006

5 Things I Learned at the Game Yesterday

1. Georgetown has a solid team, and they played a sick, sick game.

2. Duke has weaknesses, especially with a freshman point guard. The last play of the game illustrates this.

3. Georgetown girls are MUCH hotter than Duke girls.

4. Duke girls are significantly smarter than Georgetown girls. Charles Darwin said something about the relationship between brains and beauty at some point.

5. J.J. Redick is a human torch.

I've now seen, in person, both of his career high scoring games, his only dunk in regular season play ever (against Maryland), Duke's 3rd ever triple-double (Shelden Williams, against Maryland, again), and there are other records yet to fall. All in the span of a couple of months.

Pretty fucking sweet.


Letter Never Sent PANDA WATCH DAY 46

We would like to welcome Intellectual Steve to the site. We are currently in talks to have rock and roll guru D join us as well, so look out for that. Screw you, Pitchfork, we're going to be better than you in 1 year.

Also, as I write this, we are approaching our 4,000 visitor! I promise to give the lucky lady (or dude) a big fat kiss for being the actual 4oooth.