Blast from the past

In days of old, when nights were bold

"The Starck Club?!" the guy next to me ejaculated from his barstool. "Man, everybody was on X all the time and doin' big lines offa tabletops! They had all this gauzy shit or sumpin' hanging from the ceiling there, and people would just be fuckin' in the corners! No shit! It was too much!" His attention wandered; he was lost in the past. The axis of his left eye's gaze rolled off independent from its twin and his jaw slackened. "Was that!" he suddenly bellowed, pitching headlong to the floor.

Hey, it's an '80s thing, and of all the '80s things that stand for Dallas, perhaps the Starck Club is the most resonant. The Starck Club closed in 1990, around the time a lot of other '80s things lost their leases as well--massive consumption of untested designer drugs manufactured in horse trailers and having random, meaningless, and vaguely unpleasant sex with strangers, to name but two.

Well, the Starck club is back, a lean, mean, clean version decked out for the '90s and sporting a new name--Starck MCMXCVI--to avoid litigation (for all you non-Romans, MCMXCVI is 1996). Flamboyant basketball player Dennis Rodman has signed on as Celebrity Freak part-owner, and August 30 will see the club's "soft opening," to use the words of opening publicist Jason "Sparky" Morgan. "It's like a dry run," Morgan explains. "It gives us a chance to work the kinks out." The public is invited; bring money. The club's gala official grand opening will be September 27.

Scene, heard
Congrats department: Dallas hard rock quartet Blue Face has made it to Musician magazine's "Best Unsigned Band" contest semifinals on the basis of a two-song demo the band sent in. The 18-month-old group is composed of longtime local vets from bands like Big Boss Groove, the Martyrs, and Goodfoot...

Both the Turtle Creek Chorale and the Women's Chorus of Dallas have been nominated for Choral Group at the First Annual Gay/Lesbian American Music Awards (GLAMA) in Los Angeles, keeping company with the likes of Melissa Etheridge and k.d. lang. The awards will be held in New York City October 10.

Another one bites the dust: Triple Crown has decided to pack it in. The four-piece, which gigged around town at such venues as Club Dada, the Orbit Room, and the Argo (in Denton) and included founding Baboon Bart Rogers on bass and Brave Combo drummer Joe Cripps, fell prey to the usual strains: logistics, members' schedules, and the distraction of having to make a living. "Joe's got his gig, and the rest of us all have other non-music things going on," states band member Christina Rees. "Everybody's getting along, it's just that it was so hard to get everybody in the same place at the same time."

Recently added show: New York hard rock punksters Dog Eat Dog will be at the Rehab Lounge August 30...

If you've never heard their bluegrass version of the Grateful Dead's "Shakedown Street," check out the pride of Wimberly, the Volunteer Fire Ants, an aggregation that boasts players from cosmic survivors Gary P. Nunn and Rusty Wier as well as frequent guest appearances by Austin singer/songwriter Erik Moll; at the Sons of Hermann Hall August 30...

Kelly Willis has out a new EP, Fading Fast, and Crystal Clear Sound will be the sole distributor for the A&M Records release. It's Americana-o-rama: Son Volt handles backing chores on the four-cut disc and the Jayhawks' Gary Louris joins for one song. Originally done as a demo, the EP so tickled A&M that the major released it. According to Crystal Clear's David Dennard, other labels have been in contact with the local label about distribution deals, so the Willis release is kind of a test run...

The Toadies are getting to be as pervasive at the movies as the smell of popcorn, appearing on soundtrack albums for movies The Crow, Basquiat, The Cable Guy, and the unfortunate Escape From L.A....

Direct Hit Records will be having a record release party at the Bar of Soap September 1 for a gaggle of less-than-LP-size vinyl: a 7-inch from punksters Mess, another from instrumental surfers the Stingrays, and a 10-inch from the band Trailer Park, which Direct Hit honcho Kelly Hendren describes as "drunk rock for the eager." Festivities commence 9ish and all three bands will play...

Arlington band Lisa's Falling has just returned from a two-week tour of the The Area Formerly Known as the Soviet Union, where, the group reports, the Stalinist art-house fave The Tractor Girls Sing the Revolution of a Thousand Dead Kulaks features two Toadies songs and the band was paid for its work in nuclear warheads...

Pervis has signed with Idol Records.

Street Beat uses waterlogged phone books and blocks of gelatin to test bullet-expansion properties at Matt_Weitz@dallasobserver.com.

 
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