December 30, 2005
MICHIGAN: america's high five
We just made the most awesome t-shirt ever!
You can get one here
or if you're in GR at Scavenger Hunt.
December 22, 2005
Man At Arms in GR press
Thursday, December 22, 2005
By Tricia Woolfenden
The Grand Rapids Press
GRAND RAPIDS -- If the rampant consumerism of the holidays has got you down, Man At Arms might be the perfect soundtrack to your Christmas party.
And as luck would have it, the experimental, noise-rock duo will play as part of the Friction Records Christmas shindig on Friday night at Ten Bells. Think of the event as a novel way to celebrate the holiday, with an eclectic lineup of underground local and out-of-town bands.
Man At Arms -- drummer Ted Prassinos and guitarist Eric Gallippo -- fits nicely into the non-mainstream mix, with its uncompromising lyrics and sparse, but dynamic musical style.
The Grand Rapids/Cleveland, Ohio-based duo's most recent release, "Being and Commerce," was released on the local Friction label.
The six-song EP delivers stinging, but playful, social commentary on everything from buying-habits to employment. Songs are succinct, rarely passing the two-minute mark. Both men provide vocals. Gallippo is the primary lyric-writer and bases much of his material on things he has read or overheard.
"One song ("Incredible Prices") is about a radio advertisement I heard. Another is about something I read in a book," Gallippo said. "(I'll use) phrases I think of while driving around."
The track, "Horrible Professions," addresses the cycle of service industry employees logging hours to earn enough money to spend within the service industry themselves. "Incredible Prices" is an open-ended critique of the ways in which advertisers and media outlets fervently compete for consumers' attention.
"You go on Yahoo.com and see headlines for the war and right next to it is an ad," Prassinos said.
The band started in 2002 as a three-piece. This past January, the band parted ways with its bassist, resulting in a new sound.
"Eric has to fill in a lot more of the bass parts. He has to play a lot more rhythm -- not so many solos," Prassinos said.
"We write more together now and with the same rhythms," Gallippo said.
"There's less to hear, less to get cluttered," Prassinos said.
The shorter format works well for the men, as Prassinos lives several hours from Grand Rapids and the two rarely have a chance to practice together. The two often don't play together until they are on stage.
"By the second or third show, you feel more rehearsed," Gallippo said. "Sometimes it's better that way. It's exciting."
"It doesn't become a chore that way," Prassinos said.
In addition to "Being and Commerce," the band appeared on a four-band split CD "The Lake Effect" with the bands Corcovado, Spit For Athena and The Sea The Sea. Both albums are available at frictionrecords.net.
The band's first release, "A Killing Blow," can occasionally be found in the "used" bin at local record stores. When asked how it feels to find one's own work in the used bin, Prassinos laughed it off good-naturedly.
December 14, 2005
here's a painting...
December 7, 2005
New Spit For Athena review from Metro Times
The artwork is minimalist, a photograph reminiscent maybe of a Belle and Sebastian LP cover. But don’t be quick to judge, because something far more sinister than a pretty picture of a pretty girl lies underneath. Singer-guitarist Levi Bailey’s tongue is planted firmly in cheek, spitting rants on sex, society, violence and religion the only way punk rock should: with brutal honesty. While the band may be inspired by Imperial Teen and the Pixies as much as any hardcore bands, all the shimmer and shine that marred the Spits last effort has been stripped. Speaking of, the final tracks of Piss are alternate recordings of their last album, an open “fuck-you letter” to the feeble label that ruined it, Eyeball Records (whose “esteemed” alumni includes My Chemical Romance and Thursday). There’s no spoonful of sugar approach this time around, just a bitter pill to be swallowed.
-Luke Hackney Detroit Metro Times
December 5, 2005
30 new paintings by JVB
hey george, here's my two marushkas for the project, i think they may be only surpassed by your rainbow one. The top one, two of the ducks are stuffed.
ari ari on top ten overlooked albums of the year list
Here's a sort of weird ari ari review, the man show? what the fuck?