Monday, September 6, 2010

Lets Revisit Shall We (BATTLEHOOCH U.S. Tour 2010 Part 6)

Woo-wee we are lounging! LOUNGE LOUNGE LOUNGE. That's how we roll here in Seymour, Indiana at Pat's G'mas house. Seems like enough stuff has gone down in the past Vlogs that a recap of sorts was (is) in order. Sooooooooooooooooooo.... here's the first 6 episodes of the BATTLEHOOCH Desolation Tour 2010 VLOG.

EPISODE #1 - Start of the Tour Interview

EPISODE #2 - Seattle, WA

EPISODE #3 - Portland, OR

EPISODE #4 - Eugene, OR

EPISODE #5 - Solar Living Institute - Hopland, CA

EPISODE #6 - San Francisco, CA and Los Angeles, CA


Here's the playlist from the BATTLEPOD (My Ipod) from our drive to Atlanta, GA to Seymour, ID. Ya know.... just incase you were wondering what we've been listening to on the road....

Playlist Order: AJ-Ben-Pat-Grant-Ryan-Tombo

Keep The Streets Empty - Fever Ray
Sinner Man - Nina Simone
I Don't Really Mind - Tame Impala
Suspicious Minds - Elvis Preseley
Spring Hall Convert - Deerhunter
Agoraphobia - Deerhunter

Forest Fire - Dead Kennedy's
Trill - Clipse
Sunshine Superman - Donovan
Zig Zag Wanderer - Captain Beefheart and the Magic Band
Heaven or Las Vegas - Cocteau Twins
Soldier's Grin - Wolf Parade

The Fall of Mr. Fifths - WHY?
Friend of the Devil - Grateful Dead
The Wayward Part 4 - Harry Partch
Freak out Requiem - Amon Duul II
Fluorescent Grey - Deerhunter
Rainy Day Women #12 and 35 - Bob Dylan

Flume - Bon Iver
Tropicalia - Beck
Bunch of Lonesome Heroes - Leonard Cohen
Seek and Destroy - Metallica
Intermede - Oliver Messaien
El Azteca - Man Man

I'm Your Man - Richard Hell and the Voidoids
1979 - Smashing Pumpkins
Zig Zag News - Sound Sandwhich
Hairy Candy - Tobacco
Sheer Heart Attack - Queen
Where It's At (Skanky Remix) - Beck

(Slight Change Up In Seating Order)
2nd PLAYLIST ORDER: AJ-Ben-Ryan-Grant-Tombo-Pat

Dancing Queen - ABBA
Skeng - The Bug
Looking at the Invisible Man - The Dead Weather
Hellhole Ratrace - Girls
The Attic - Van Dyke Parks

Hold Me, Thrill Me, Kiss Me, Kill Me - U2
Gimme! Gimme! Gimme! (A Man After Midnight) - ABBA
You Can Make It If You Try - Sly and the Family Stone
Pastime Paradise - Stevie Wonder
Dirty Diana - Michael Jackson

Jogo Da Calcada - Os Mutantes
Shake - Otis Redding
O Religio - Os Mutantes
Where I End and You Begin - Radiohead
People of the Sun - Rage Against The Machine
Cold, Cold Heart - Hank Williams

History Lesson, Pt. 2 - The Minutemen
Roulette Dares (The Haunt of) - The Mars Volta
Transformer Man - Neil Young
Smash - The Offspring
One of Us Cannot Be Wrong - Leonard Cohen

Master Song - Leonard Cohen
Travelin' Band - Creedence Clearwater Revival
Vanished - Crystal Castles
New Electric Ride - Captain Beefheart and the Magic Band
(...and then we arrived)

Mad Love for ya'll. Episode 7 is finished, I'm putting it up in a few days.

PEACE. (I've never felt like more of a hippie than I have since being in the midwest...)

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Gonna Set My Soul On FIRE (BATTLEHOOCH U.S. Tour 2010 Part 7)


Its a wild thing...

...this whole "being away from California" thing.

Archaeology Johnson (Moi) is born and raised in California, dear readers. The longest I've been away from Cali was back in fall of 2007 when I traveled around Europe for 3 and a half weeks with my good friend Sofia Bell (who currently plays in the truly mind boggling Little Teeth). I've done some domestic traveling too. Always short jaunts, and mostly just visiting the kin in the east coast and occasional Nevada and New Mexico jaunts...

YES SIR, until this past July vast swaths of this fine fine country had remained unexplored/inexperienced by your humble Blog wrangler (Archaeology Johnson... moi).... and really pretty much the whole band (in various degrees).

All previous vlogs covered our last days on the West Coast (the west is the best) so all ensuing posts document the band's journey into new and wild frontier... ...seeing new parts of the country that we've never visited before. New experiences and adventures coming at us everyday.

(The last time I woke up in California was on my blow up mattress on the outside deck of the apartment inhabited by the band's good friends Sasha and John Paul (who play in the marvelous band "The Hot Moon")... It was a beautiful day (Of course. Ya gotta love San Diego in the summer, yo)... not too far from the ocean that you couldn't smell some salt... we had a delicious breakfast of homemade tacos and then gorged on free (FREE!!!!!!) gelato before saying good by to our sweet, sweet home.... good bye for Months..... AND Months.... AND Months...)

So now that I've rambled on (briefly) in a hyperbolic (superdupercrazylooper....) manner... here's some footage of us being stupid in Las Vegas.

(Gambling. Dancing to FUNKY MUSIC. Playing some jams in a sleak bar. Gambling.)

Vegas is enjoyable. Had some good times in Vegas every time I've gone. (Ya'll seen the Beatles Cirque de Soleil show? In a word... sakdfjyasdbfascjsydnsdfkjsfabsmdfas!!!!!!!! <------- TONGUES) Vegas is SUPER FAKE though. Not that that's even really a bad thing... more like it's kinda amazing. Like, Las Vegas shouldn't be where it is. It's in the middle of the Desert. There's no water. And yet through Sinatra, mobsters, vice and light bulbs it's become THE GODLESS MECCA OF SIN (or something.) A place to go for FUN FUN. A place to go to act like a FUCKING ANIMAL. I've always liked it. I've been there 4 times since I've been of proper Vegas age... and every time it mystifies me in some new way. Always looking for tangible soul in THE GODLESS MECCA OF SIN... always feel like I'm getting close BUT I still haven't found what I'm looking for... (hey, maybe that's why U2 filmed their video in Vegas... cosmic?(?).....)

So there ya go. As an added bonus I've added some super BOSS photos of us playing Frisbee and just looking HARD at a Nevada truck stop. If you've watched our vlog posts from this tour, you've probably noticed that we do a good amount of Frisbee playing. We're getting super good, yo. Getting dangerously good actually. Thinking about leaving behind this whole MUSIC thing and trying to make our money on the road hussling pick up games of DISC. We cannot be stopped.

(We're currently in Detroit Rock City, listening to Loretta Lynn, eating tamales and hanging out with the ever so charming Kim Paris, otherwise known as the booking agent for our Midwest/South/East Coast dates on the tour. She's groovy groovy groovy, to say the least)

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Many Worlds Have Come Since I First Left Home (BATTLEHOOCH U.S. Tour 2010 Part 5)

(as in "don't turn it loose, cause it's a MOTHER!" as my man James Brown says)

So much activity recently. (you always say that, lame-o)

Right now, we couldn't be any more in the South, boys and girls. Yes, we are knuckle deep in the bible belt.... visited so many states that until now have existed only in abstract forms in my mind (Mississippi, Louisiana, Alabama, Florida, North Carolina, Georgia, ETC!) Learning so much about this country... people... stereotypes... weirdness...

The spectre of religious madness and corrupt asshole police are always around, yet they have yet to interfere with the tour (knock on wood).

All this southern livin' is funny cause all the vlog posts I'm about to put up/talk about are from events from a month ago.... When we were still on the west coast (awww, the beautiful west, how I miss thee).

You wouldn't believe how hard it's been for yr humble blog wrangler to find a decent Internet connection to upload these videos, let alone write this very blog post. Quite difficult.... (oh, 1st world problems....) so, sorry for the lag since last post... (you always say that, lame-o)

Last time I posted, it was to tell tales of adventure in Portland, OR. The next 3 vlogs track our journey back home to SF and down to LA before we left the west coast and embarked on the guts of the tour. (We are NOW in the guts)

  • Episode #4 - Eugene, OR.

We were only in Eugene for a little over 36 hours but it couldn't have been more action packed. We rolled into town on the late night tip and shacked up with our friend of a friend of a friend of a GIRLfriend, the lovely Francesca McCormick (what a babe). Being that we arrived very late, I chose to turn in while the rest of the boys went out to check out the town. I brushed my teeth, put on my jammies, whipped out the sleeping bag and pillow and literally had just closed my eyes when RRRRRRRRRRRRRRING my celly starts blowin' up. Wouldn't ya know it, it was the other battleboys with an important message! Apparently, the downtown area of Eugene was absolutely CRACKIN and the word was that we would be damn fools to not street perform. Next thing i knew (literally), I was standing on a street corner amidst a plethora of drunkards, piecechows and foxy ladies. We started our first song some time after 2:15am. Cars kept driving past and each time I was sure that it was a cop car coming to shut us down and throw us into the brig..... yet, it never happened (!!!!!!). As the set progressed, the whole downtown scene basically turned into a ridiculous dance party: bumpin, grindin, pop lockin, and there was even Russian dancing at one point! Tripped out weirdos headbanging! Boobies being flashed! Sexy glances this way and that.... it was literally insane. When we busted out our trusty cover of "billie jean", things just went OFF. It was literally a night I will never forget... so glad I didn't demand to be left alone so I could sleep. Episode 4 is a highlight reel (of sorts) from this event. The show was so hot, you must be careful that your youtube doesn't blow up. (okay, Archaeology Johnson... calm down, yo)

  • Episode #5 - Solar Living Institute (SLI)

After a failed attempt at trying to street perform outside of a Ringo Starr concert (closest I've ever been to a Beatle, yo.) and a show with our good friends Dirty Wink (not to mention the most splendid night of romantic gallivanting I've had in recent memory... word up Allison, :) :) :)), we bid farewell to Eugene and started making our way back down the west coast. Before getting to SF we stopped off at the Solar Living Institute in Hopland, CA. Our drummer, Hubaloinz, went to SLI for a spell after he graduated from UCSC. He lived in a little trailer for a few months and learned the nitty gritty about green energy, climate change, etc. and so forth. (FUN FACT: It was here that he got the initial idea for our trusty battery bank.) Since we were more or less going to be going right past SLI on our way back to SF, we decided to stop off there and get some upgrades done to the battery bank.

Episode 5 has Hubaloinz explaining a little bit about the battery bank, Grant giving you a luxurious tour of the premisses of SLI and as an added bonus some footage of nearby Clearlake... which, in a word, is really FILTHY. (Like, FILLLLLLLLLLLLTHY.) Also, Pat slept in a house made of hay that night. The rest of us slept in a yurt. A good time was had by all. Don't use plastic. Long live the Sun.

  • Episode #6 - San Francisco Visit/Los Angeles

The 2 or so weeks that we spent up north were textbook examples of perfect weather. Delightful breezes, comfy warm temps, blue skies, etc. and so forth. Utterly perfect, yo. So it was certainly a shock to come upon the Golden Gate bridge and see how completely smothered in fog our beautiful city by the bay was. It just looked like a huge, cloud shaped fat guy was sitting on the whole city... and it was COLD!!!! For the majority of our time up north I was wearing shorts and a tank top, yet as soon as I got to SF out came the sweatshirt and the knit cap. (love this town, no matter what) That night we played a "secret" show of sorts at one of the best sounding rooms in the city, the Rickshaw Stop. It was a mellow affair with some close friends, but damn good fun none the less. We shared the bill with New York's absolutely radiant Setting Sun and Quitzow (which is actually the same people in both bands, but don't tell anyone).
This show was also noteworthy because it marked the beginning of THE GABE LEG. THE GABE LEG was/is the section of tour where we had our invaluable sound engineer Gabe Armstrong joining us for the adventure, making sure we sound GOOD and STUFF.

After the show, we went back to the Battlepad for an after party with the homies. Now, the Battlepad is certainly still our home, but while we're gone on this 4 month adventure we have a bunch of people subletting. We may have only been gone for 2 weeks but the place was already VERY different looking once we came back.... Yet, it was still very clearly the same Battlepad. It reminded me of those dreams that you have when you go back to an old house from your past/childhood and you can tell it's the same place, but everything is moved around and a little off.... was a little bit trippy, if you ask me.
It was so nice to see our homies one last time, have a day off sitting on the couch watching tv (On Demand)... seriously love the BATTLEPAD... Clips from the Rickshaw Stop show and some of the after party are in part 1 of Episode 6.

...but we weren't meant to stay in SF for too long... the road beckoned. We got down to LA and played a show in a guitar shop in Venice, CA. This, unfortunately, was the first BAD show of the tour. Not so much that we played bad but I think pretty much everyone was bummed out during the show. The fellow (or should I say FUCKTARD) who owned the guitar shop refused to let Gabe do our sound, took fucking forever to set up the mics, didn't listen to our requests for what should be mic'd and then proceeded to a REALLY shitty job of mixing our band. UGH, he was just a smarmy little bastard of a man and totally took the wind out of our sales. Also, Ben's keyboard completely crapped out right before the show, which he was not too pleased with (in fact, this couldn't be more perfectly illustrated than the look on ben's face during the footage from Time Warp music in Episode 6. LOOK AT HOW FRUSTRATED THAT MAN IS!!!!! AHHHHHHH!!). The funny thing is that two separate videos of us playing that show wound up on Youtube within days of the show. Oh well.... so much for putting the best foot forward.
That night we fit a good chunk of the band into our friend Amelia's TINY little studio apartment (gabe and I slept in the battlevan)... probably the smallest place we've fit the band for a night sleep, yet. The next morning we were chilling hard and Gabe shot a video of me being super EMO and playing classical guitar improvs on a fire escape... (Gabe wanted the video to look French.... does it look French?)

Luckily, the next day's shows fared much better. First, we played a really fun street performing style show in the upstairs loft of Origami Vinyl in Echo Park and then we played a concert at the Hobbie Shop recording studio in Highland Park. Our set from the Hobbie Shop was also recorded on a 16 track mixing board and run through a bunch of sweet (sweet) analog gear. We are currently working at putting together the footage and recordings from this show for inclusion in later battleblogs... However, our musical abilities sadly don't translate over to competence with film editing software, so it's taking longer than expected. (EXCUSES EXCUSES.) Snippets from the LA shows are in Part 2 of Episode 6. (Seriously, yo. Check out ben's scowl. So HARD.)

You know the drill at this point. We're trying to crank this stuff out as fast as we can... thanks for reading... love ya'll.

If only you could hear the bugs in the Athens, GA night..... so lovely