Monday, May 24, 2010

New EXPLONE Single, Key Lime Pie, & Leaving The Island. Issue #155

Here it is, the first single from EXPLONE and our forthcoming disc, Dreamers/Lovers. It's called "Michigan" and was the last song both written and recorded for the new album 3 years in the making by band leader/songwriter Patrick Porter. It's so funny how something added so last minute can be so awesome, but the moment it was recorded it was obviously a stand out track both in energy and a fresh sound Patrick created. I love this track and thanks to some new radio play on KEXP 90.3 which started last week, hopefully lots of other folks will too. Our CD Release show will be on Thursday, June 17th, so mark your calendars and come out and rock with us at the Crocodile in Seattle! Check to stream "Michigan", and for how to get this song as a free download…Turn it up!

Last Minutes with ODEN from phos pictures on Vimeo.

The short film above is possibly the most moving thing I've ever watched. About a man coming to terms with the end of his dogs life, "Last Minutes With ODEN" moved me deeply and made me run downstairs from my studio to give Logan a huge hug and let him know how thankful I am to have him have me. If I were you, I'd grab a Kleenex first.

I played Willows Lodge on Friday and just wasn't feeling it. Some nights are like that, and you just put your head down and do the the job cause you know next time will be better. That said, a shitty day came to a close when I came home to find my kitchen blown up and in it's place the first key lime pie I've ever had made for me.
Day = much better.

Saturday rolled around and Kristin and I decided to head over to the Georgetown area to adventure and possibly pillage the townsfolk. Now maybe it was due to the fact it was 1:30 and hadn't eaten anything all day, but the lunch we had a small little place called CALAMITY JANE'S completely blew my mind. I'm serious, and Seattle foodies listen up...the ciabatta bun on the burger I had is THE BEST I have ever had. Not only that, but the quirk of the joint is that instead of fries you get a plate full of Cheetos. Also, Frank's Red Hot sauce is my new Jesus Juice. Crazy, crazy, crazy good. Viva Los gorganzola. Yes that's sauce on my face. No, I didn't care.

An interview KIRBY KRACKLE did in Chicago popped up on the super cool site NEWSARAMA (the CNN equivalent for the comic nerd set) and you can watch it by clicking HERE. In other KK news, we're kicking off another 2 weeks of convention travel and concerts starting in Phoenix this weekend for the PHOENIX COMIC CON. The band is going with us for this show and we're rocking the big show concert Saturday night. I also get to perform "Zombie Apocalypse" the night before at a "Zombie Pageant". The weekend should be a blast despite the brain melting 100 degree days we seem to be heading down to burn in. Holy Crap. I complain when it's 85 so I'm probably not gonna be making any friends. Week after that...North Carolina!

Also, Jim and I appeared this morning on The Marty Riemer Show, an awesome webcast that Marty and his partner Jodi Brothers created when they took success into their own hands after getting the corporate chop from 103.7 The Mountain last year. After listening to each of them separately since 1998, it was great to finally meet them, laugh, and play a few KK songs. I was honored they wanted us on after I had been such a longtime fan, and psyched they were as nice as I hoped they'd be. You can listen to the entire webcast interview and performances of both "Zombie Apocalypse" and "On And On" HERE

Finally, LOST (my obsession for the past 6-years) came to a screeching halt on Sunday and hopefully gave the millions of LOST fans closure. Doesn't sound like it did, but I really liked it and thought it was a pretty beautiful message paired with really emotional scoring. It was made even better by a party my friends threw with island themed foods and even "Jacob and The Smoke Monster" cupcakes by DRAGONFLY DESSERTS. Bomb. An emotional ending to what has turned out to be the only show I've ever followed so religiously like a crack addict like fever. Amazing show, amazing memories. I'll miss it very much.

4 8 15 16 23 42,


Monday, May 17, 2010

Princess Kaiulani/Garage Sale/Seattle Beer Week. Issue #154

This past weekend saw the release of PRINCESS KAIULANI, the first full feature length film from my songwriting employers Island Film Group. It was very cool to finally see the public birthing of the film after it began filming 2 years ago in Hawaii and England. Set in the late 1800's, the film follows the life of the Hawaiian princess as she was annexed from her throne and sent to England for education before returning to unite the spirit of the native peoples during the further domination of the US government. It's awesome. Yes, I'm biased, but it's awesome. Check out the trailer then skip over to the Guild 45th theater in Seattle and other major cities!

I had my first ever garage sale this past Saturday and it was a pretty interesting experience being that mostly everything was $1 expect for shoes and jackets which were $5. Some people showed up looking for jewelery, some for video games, but I like to think I made someones day when they bought a Backstreet Boys t-shirt I had...given to me that is. Oh yeah, Kevin was the cute one.

4 EVA and EVA OMG.

Seriously though, I've been in purging mode and had a garage full of stuff I don't use that was collected over the years. Kitchen supplies, shoes, clothes, old action figures, you name it. There was something for everybody except Gingers, mostly cause they have no souls (South Park said it). My favorite (?) part of the day was when an older woman showed up and kept trying to talk me down to $14 on a $20 amount of goods. Yeah she was good, and sadly she won just cause I wanted her to leave my sight. The self destruction timer on that backpack she kept trying to hide items in was probably a surprise. Great, now TSA is following this blog. Share the tunes buzzcuts!

As of last Thursday Seattle Beer Week has been in full swing and after a day accepting soggy $1 bills I was ready to partake. ELYSIAN brewer on the hill had a fun event celebrating the liquid Benjamin Franklin said "was proof God wants us to be happy" in the form of their Barely wine lineup from '05-'09. The food was great, the barely wine was delish (even the cask ales of which I'm never a fan), and the games were awesome. Games you say? Yep, and keeping with the theme the games ranged from "Pin The Eye On The Cyclops" to "Feed Peasants To The Cyclops". You can see how it all went down below and if you get a chance check out some activities happening all over the city this week. Besides throwing villagers in trolls mouths, the restroom held some genius of it's own. Written on the tile on the grout in very small print held the ramblings of some drunk savant on a rhyming bender. "Oscar the Grout", "In-And-Grout Burger", and "Grout of Control" was what you read if you looked really close. Are you listening Elysian marketing department? Hire this kid...

Trying to slay the ogre,


Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Uploading. Issue #153

KIRBY KRACKLE has been posting a bunch of videos lately, and here's a few from the show we did with Marvel Comic's Editor-In-Chief Joe Quesada a few weeks ago in Chicago at C2E2...Enjoy!

"On And On"

"Vault 101"

"Tony Stark"

"Great Lake Avengers"

"Take It From Me"


Wednesday, May 5, 2010

It Might Get Loud. Issue #152

A few days ago I watched the recently released on DVD/Blu-Ray film, "It Might Get Loud", which focuses on 3 different guitarists from different generations in the form of Jimmy Page (Led Zeppelin), The Edge (U2), and Jack White (White Stripes). Not so much a movie for guitarists singularly, it focused on how different events in each of their lives brought them to pick up a guitar and learn how to play. Random events meet random events, and're in Led Zeppelin. That's the stuff I find more interesting any day compared to who uses what amp or pedal. Still, choices that like lead to a musician finding his or her "voice" with the instrument and then translating through the wires the message/art one would like to share with the world (or maybe just the dog sitting at their feet).

After watching the film I found myself wondering, "What kind of guitarist am I?". Strangely, I guess it never really crossed my mind, but also I'm the kinda guy who doesn't believe someone is one thing or belief (i.e. "I'm a Republican goddammit!"). The more I thought about it, and though I do play guitar, I don't really feel like a "guitarist" in the sense of the word that I think most people use it. To me, the guitar has always felt like a means to an end to reach my ultimate goal...the song. If I hadn't learned guitar, I'm sure it would have been piano or something else. This seemed strange to me when I realized I felt that way, at the same time realizing maybe it was time I found out what my voice was. As they ask in the film..."What does your playing say about you?". Hmmmm. This is a good question.

Why did I start playing?

As honestly and as accurately as I can remember, I simply thought the look of the Alternative bands of the early 90's was one of the coolest things I've ever seen. That, along with the fact I was the annoyingly awkward age of 12 and began to see the definite gap in athletic abilities between my peers and I led me to think it was something I could make "my thing" apart from them. I'm guessing this is more common than not. I wasn't amazing when I started (much like now), but I had the drive to learn new chords and treat it with a kind of discipline I have yet to find myself feeling for any other new skill since then. My friend Matt Edington (who appeared on my COLLIDER album last year) and I took in a steady diet of MTV, VH1, and guitar magazines with hopes that someday we could be that cool as the guys we saw on tv. Again, not something I knew at the time, but looking back it was the longing to associate ourselves on that level...whatever that was.

As the 3 musicians in IMGL discussed and shared their influences with one another, I thought about who made up the building blocks of what I do unconsciously all the time when playing. Names that come to mind take the form of Peter Buck (R.E.M.), Stone Gossard (Pearl Jam), David Bryson (Counting Crows), and Billie Joe from Green Day. This was formative years stuff, and no matter what you think about the previous list of bands, each of these guys did have their own voices you could hear and are still associated with them today. My guess is that if you ask any player around my age they'd list a similar grouping of names. Interestingly enough, ask my band mates in EXPLONE who are 10 years older than me and you'd get a completely different set of names. It's all where you were and what you were listening to during your developing years that hold a special place in your musical DNA. We are the product of our environment, yes?

When I was starting out, I tried to play as many notes as possible to fill the space. It was loud and caustic, and for a 13 year old, that was pretty appropriate in retrospect. When I was 15 I heard the quote, "It's not what you play, it's what you don't play". This blew my mind. I started to listen to the bands I liked differently and realizing that if it's on 10 all the doesn't mean anything. This is why bands like AC/DC seem so heavy; it the spaces between cuts like "Back In Black" that continually hit you in the head like a loose elephant of anticipation.

This is the foreplay of Rock N' Roll.

After I saw how cool this was it forever changed the way I write songs. I went through a period of playing extremely sparse guitar during my songs, I went through a punk style guitar phase (a phase I'm slipping back into), I even went though a time where I was going to be nothing but a "bluesman". Despite my current Rock-Pop sound, this is what I've always felt I am and try to be in the essence of my music. A bluesman connects with the core of the feeling of the song, and does the best he or she can to convey that feeling with the audience. This is something hope I always strive for consciously, and unconsciously.

I'd recommend "It Might Get Loud" to anybody who is a fan of good film making. It was inspiring, and at the same time made me think a little differently about what I do. Do I push myself as hard as I'd like as a guitarist? Honestly, probably not at all. I've gotten used to doing what I need do to serve the song, and play what I want to hear, but I know if I did start pushing the now pretty comfortable boundaries...the songs would get better. This is something I'm inspired to take on now as the result of this movie, and that's a good feeling.

All trying to find our voice,