Sunday, 30 November 2014

Q#98 - October - November 2014

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Q’s Compilations
Volume #98 October – November 2014

My favourite concert space and DIY venue, Death By Audio, closed on the 22nd of November. My words on that can be found here ( This mix consists of bands I saw at the venue and may go some way of showing why it was the best damn music venue, that booked the best bands, had the best sound, the best staff, and will be missed greatly.

01) Pop Zeus - Dead in the Water: Mikey Hodges produces perfect power-pop and this song is probably his best. New York’s music scene is certainly weaker since he moved to the West Coast. Pick up debut album and the Tell Me So EP on his bandcamp page:  

02) Hector's Pets - New Job: I’m not sure if there’s a band I saw more times at DBA than Hector’s Pets (two of the band were also in Pop Zeus’ band), so it wouldn’t be appropriate at all to leave them out. The band’s debut, Pet-O-Feelia is a garage-rock triumph.

03) Bennio Qwerty - Pipe Dreams: One of the joys of going to DBA was not needing to do your homework and trust that Edan had put together a good bill, the openers were just as likely to be as good as the headliners. The band are one of my favourites in Brooklyn and I have DBA to thank for that.

04) Brick Mower - Never Said Easy: I’ve used Brick Mower a bunch of times and they were another band I’d never heard of until they rocked up to the stage at DBA (opening for California X and Nuclear Santa Claust). This track is from their latest release, 2014’s Teenage Graceland.

05) Meatbodies – Tremmors: It should be no surprise that Meatbodies’ Chad Ubovich has spent time in both Ty Segall and Mikal Cronin’s bands. That should really be all I need to say! They delivered possibly the set of this year’s CMJ (save possibly Slowdive’s unlikely reunion).

06) Pinkwash - So Long: Philadelphia’s Pinkwash consist of Ashley Arnwine (current drummer in Bleeding Rainbow) and Joey Doubek formerly of Hume, together they make an almighty racket and while two-piece bands seem to be in right now, I can’t think of anyone who does it better.

07) Metz – Rats: Canada’s Metz played their first ever New York Show at DBA (as did so many others) and also appear on the 2012 Live at DBA Flexi Book, so it was fitting that they would play one of the last ever shows at the venue, which also ended up being one of the best I ever saw. The band’s debut album was one of the best records of 2012 (Headache appears on Q#87).

08) Roomrunner - Super Vague: Possibly the hottest, stickiest show I have ever been to was Roomrunner and Speedy Ortiz at DBA, it was another one of those nights the power went out, but technical difficulties aside, Roomrunner are one of the best live bands around and they powered through their set.

09) Thee Oh Sees - Carrion Crawler (live at DBA): This was recorded by NYC Taper in June (, a show that I attended featuring their new-look three piece setup. I could have used a studio track but I think this live recording captures their live sound pretty well, warts and all.

10) Ty Segall – Manipulator: I think if you asked most people to name one act synonymous with DBA then Ty Segall would be the one most would say (who didn’t live or work there, at least). This is the title-track from his latest studio album (at the time of writing, he’ll probably release another 3 albums in the next hour). I took the picture on the cover for this mix at his last appearance at the venue.

11) JEFF the Brotherhood - U Got the Look: JEFF are another band that instantly rolls off the tongue when thinking about DBA along with Ty Segall and Thee Oh Sees, and they played the final night (as well as the previous month). I want to say they played this song but their set was such a blur I can’t remember! This track appears on Heavy Days.

12) Screaming Females - A New Kid: I saw Screaming Females 5 times in 2014 and was glad to finally see them at DBA before it closed, Marissa also did my favourite DBA mural (the one with the freaky sausage dogs). This track appears on Castle Talk and is always a live favourite, but then again, Screamales are probably the best live band around right now so they’re all favourites!

13) Tweens – Forever: I was surprised to see I had only used Be Mean from the band’s demos CD, I guess I had been saving tracks up for the best-of-the-year mix because their debut is one of my absolute favourites.

14) Parquet Courts - Stoned and Starving: Before I saw Parquet Courts play at DBA they said “we learned how to be a band here”, and they played a blinding set of favourites, as if it were a show that they wanted to remember for the rest of their lives, let alone the audience. This is of course from their flagship LP, Light Up Gold.

15) Vaadat Charigim – Odisea: Another great thing about DBA was its philosophy of giving touring bands a platform. Israeli band Vaadat Charagim (which a friend tells me means Committee of the Nonbelievers in Hebrew, what a great name) wear their shoegazing influences firmly on their sleeve, but execute it with incredible panache.

16) Dick Diver - Calendar Days: Australian band Dick Diver’s 2013 album Calendar Days is a wonderful jangle-indie-pop record. The band’s name was taken from a character in the F. Scott Fitzgerald novel Tender Is the Night. The group say “On one level it’s pretentious, but it’s also pretty gross,” says Edwards. “So it’s a pretty honest representation of the band.”

17) Woods - Shining (live at DBA): This is another recording courtesy of NYC Taper (, the track originally appears on the band’s latest record, With Light and With Love.

18) Vivian Girls - I Head You Say: As well as saying goodbye to DBA this year, we also said goodbye to Vivian Girls, who played two farewell shows in Brooklyn this January, with their penultimate show being at DBA, where they had played so many times. This appears on 2011’s Share the Joy, which turned out to be their final record.

19) Priests – Doctor: Washington DC’s Priests signed to Don Giovanni this year and released the fantastic EP Bodies and Control and Money and Power having previously released a couple of tapes on the Sister Polygon label.

20) Numerators - Finally Sees: A staple of the New York DIY scene and somewhat of a DBA houseband, Numerators include drummer Burgers Rana, who worked the door at DBA. The band’s bio states “we believe in pizza, the log lady, & rock n roll.”, and that’s maybe all the description you need! For more, see

21) Protomartyr - Scum, Rise!: Detroit’s finest get compared to The Fall quite a lot, but I think that is doing them a huge disservice, despite often being just as intoxicated, the band manage to keep their shit together for a start! Protomartyr probably played DBA more than any other out-of-town band and were clearly a favourite. Under Color of Official Right is sure to make many a best-of-2014 list.

22) L.A. Witch - Get Lost: Sludgey guitars? Reverb-soaked vocals? The tried and tested formula rarely fails to excite and L.A. Witch are no exception. They recently played during the CMJ Music Marathon (and while more of an anti-CMJ venue, it’s still going to be hard to swallow to think that the venue won’t be there for next year).

23) A Place to Bury Strangers - I Lost You: No other band is so entrenched into the Death By Audio dynamic than A Place to Bury Strangers, Oliver Ackerman is co-founder of the venue and also builder of the effects pedals of the same name. They played numerous times at the venue, including the final night, which was also Oliver’s birthday. This track appears on Onwards to the Wall.

24) Diarrhea Planet – Separations: While their studio output doesn’t come close to the sheer spectacle of their live show, there was something about this song that just made me want to put it on, sometimes you don’t need a reason. From their second album, I’m Rich Beyond Your Wildest Dreams.

26) Mac DeMarco - Only You: I’m closing this mix with the first headliner I ever saw at DBA, I had wondered just what I had let myself in for as they played to a packed crowd dripping with sweat, the power cut out and everything seemed to go wrong. This masked what was generally a perfectly ran space, and in spite of the mishaps, something made me want to go back, and then I kept going back. While Mac’s star continues to rise, I can’t help but feel his schtick is becoming a little more hit-and-miss with his ubiquitousness. However, every time I hear a song like this I’m reminded of his talents.

Obviously this mix is brilliant, and in many mays it isn’t my mix, if you ever went to DBA in any capacity, it’s yours.

Until next time

Peace and love - Q

Please note that the zip file has a password: Q98
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