When WENZ-FM/107.9 changed formats, the local music scene lost an important broadcast vehicle in The Local End. Northeast Ohio bands and fans will make up some of the ground beginning this weekon television, no less.
Monday nights at midnight, on Cablevision channels 24 and 25, the weekly program Dilated Pupils will feature two or three Northeast Ohio bands per episode. Co-hosts Dave Vidovic and Doug Paul crafted the idea while working their subcontracting jobs. "I just thought it would be something great for Cleveland, being the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame City and all, to do something like this, revitalize the scene a little bit," Vidovic says.
Vidovic, Paul, and cameraman Tom Vidovic (Dave's brother) are not musiciansjust local music fans. The show will contain interviews, live performances, and man-on-the-street interviews (e.g., Who is your favorite local band?).
Rather than stick a microphone in front of the beak of any knucklehead with a guitar, the producers of Dilated Pupils will try to feature bands they consider worthy. Bands will be graded not only by their talent but also their disposition. One group, who shall remain nameless, has already been rejected for, in Paul's words, "a really shitty attitude." Good move. Local bands, as Dave Vidovic notes, have a symbiotic relationship with each other in that, if clubgoers "see one band that might be bad, then they don't want to see live music again."
Tender Blindspot, Cows in the Graveyard, and the Crackhouse Jazz Quartet are profiled on the first episode.
Cleveland-based Alternative Press magazine is getting into the record business. September 14, AP and Rhino Records will release Industrial Strength Machine Music: The Framework of Industrial Rock 1978-1995.
The sixteen-track CD traces the roots of industrial music, beginning with Throbbing Gristle. Other bands on the compilation are Einstürzende Neubauten, Skinny Puppy, Ministry, Cabaret Voltaire, Coil, Front 242, Meat Beat Manifesto, and KMFDM"a bunch of bands you used to see on the backs of jackets on kids hanging out in front of the Empire," says AP Senior Editor Jason Pettigrew, who wrote the liner notes.
Scene: Phantasy Nite Club.
Time: 10:30 p.m., Friday, June 18, 1999.
Event: Gothic Cultureshock, featuring three bands, various vendors, and a slave auction.
Number of people wearing kilts: one.
Number wearing capes reminiscent of drapes at mid-budget motel: one.
Number employing Kiss Me Kiss Me Kiss Me-era Robert Smith hairstyle: one and a half.
Trench coats or unhinged Klebold/ Harris-looking characters: zero.
Mood: more fetish ball than Satan's workshop.
Vendors: dark and studded clothing and accessories, safe sex, tarot-card readings, surprisingly colorful flowers constructed of clay.
Sensation after $5 tarot-card reading by man with bad teeth who had to consult an instructional booklet: oddly soothing, despite appearance of "devil" card.
Sample of ready-to-wear slogans offered by Punk Ass Gear, a Loretto, Pennsylvania, T-shirt manufacturer: "Goth as fuck," "Jesus hates me," "I put the "fun' in dysfunction," "My god hates your god," "I kick hippies," "I'm so fucking beautiful."
Incredulity level with those who would purchase shirts embossed with slogans, Gothic or otherwise: high.
Interest in slave auction: somewhat aroused, until disclaimers were read.
Temptation to play video game instead of watch band: strong, but manageable.
In what used to be U4ia, Europa opens Friday, June 25. The 21-and-over club will be open Friday and Saturday nights from 9 p.m. until 7 a.m. DJ Mike Philly, who used to spin at Trilogy, will play house music. "All house music is the same," says Brian Hamblen, the club's general manager, "but you're not going to say, "I just heard that at Aqua or Groovee or Wish.'"
There is a dress code (ads for the club say to "Dress spectacular!" [sic]), so leave your hats and jeans at home. For big spenders, there is a (no kidding) VVIPvery, very important personroom.
The Savannah Bar & Grill is putting on an outdoor concert at the Cleveland Metroparks Zoo Sunday, August 15. Three harmonica playersBilly Branch, Carey Bell, and James Cottonheadline the day-long event, called Blues at the Zoo. Locals Robert Lockwood Jr., Colin Dussault, and the Travis Haddix Band will play earlier in the day.
The afternoon portion of the show, starting at 1, is free with $7 zoo admission. Tickets for the evening show, which starts at 8, are $20 for a pavilion seat and $15 for the lawn. Tickets can be purchased at the Cleveland Metroparks Zoo, the Savannah, or through Ticketmaster.
Behold the power of Floyd: Because of ticket demand, the July 27 Roger Waters show has been moved from the Nautica Stage to Gund Arena.
If you already have a ticket, go to the point of purchase for a new one. Belkin Productions says that those with reserved seats will receive "comparable seat locations." Exchanges must be completed by Friday, June 25.
If you do not have a ticket, seats can be purchased through the Gund Arena ticket office or Ticketmaster.
The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame unveiled its latest exhibitLinda McCartney's Sixties: Portraits of an Eralast Friday night.
The late Linda McCartney, contrary to hubby Paul's insistence, wasn't that special of a photographer (she had no discernible style). While the Linda exhibit can be fun to look at (especially the pictures of the young Rolling Stoneswho look ready to kick the world square in the assand an unguarded Aretha Franklin), the exhibit smacks of Name over History. Feel free to pass.
Mobile entertainers, a.k.a. DJs and karaoke hosts, descend on Cleveland June 28-30 for Mobile Beat magazine's Summer DJ Show and Conference.
The event takes place at the Cleveland Convention Center. Manufacturers of arcane equipment will be there, as well as seminars. Our favorite: "How to Book and Perform [at] Bar and Bat Mitzvahs."
Tadpol has a new four-song CD. The band plays the Symposium Friday, June 25 . . . Five Minutes Fast's CD release show benefits the Center for Families and Children. It's an early show (6-8:30 p.m.) at the Barking Spider. The $16 admission includes beverages, appetizers, and the CD.
This week's unfortunate press release comes from the Mitch Schneider Organization:
LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla.: "The five members of America's premier rock band, Aerosmith, who have sold more than 80 million records and influenced generations of musicians, have teamed with Walt Disney Imagineering to create a high-speed thrill ride that will rock and roll Walt Disney World Resort guestsliterally."
If anyone else would like to see Mssrs. Tyler and Perry get back on coke, I'm willing to go halfsies.