Scene stealers

Blush and Swivel don't want to change the world -- just Dallas

Although he resides in Austin, sharing a house with the older brothers of Couch and Larsen, Simons is reluctant to enter the intimidating sphere of Austin music. "In Austin, it's different, because music is almost disposable," he says. "There are so many bars and so many bands. I am battling indigestion and deadlines. They don't return your phone calls. You have to really want it."

Both acts have found somewhat more receptive audiences in Denton. "There are more kids there that are in some way involved with music and the shows," Rodriguez says, agreeing with Cordon, who doubts that "kids want to be a part of things going on in Dallas. Anyone who wants to be involved has to go to Denton." And it's still an hour's drive from Sylvan Avenue to Rubber Gloves.

It's an insult to have to drive 50 miles to see the Make-Up or Will Oldham when one lives in the middle of the nation's ninth-largest city. And, as Rene says, "Rubber Gloves is basically a club."

The members of Swivel would rather create their own place to play than perform in Deep Ellum's clubs.
The members of Swivel would rather create their own place to play than perform in Deep Ellum's clubs.

The next show for both bands is their first gig at Moon Tunes, a warehouse booking mainly hardcore shows and populated with young, oh-so-punk-rock kids. Shows had stopped for a while after fights had gotten out of hand. The fights have begun again, and the surrounding neighborhood is ridden with violence. Yet the kids remain optimistic, as it's the only real option left. "I'd like to see it grow, and I hope they'll be more accepting of us," says Simons. "By opening up in that area, they've gone out of their way to listen to music."

"What Dallas needs," says Morris Currance, a friend and patron of both bands, "is exposure to music. An all-ages mid-sized venue and a radio station where we can actually hear the new Paul Newman record."

Until then, Blush and Swivel have their sights set beyond the limitations of their city. Swivel is in the process of booking a tour of the Midwest and East Coast for March and April, and Blush hopes to tour in July. Simons says that, ultimately, Swivel and Blush would like to finish what they started in Dallas, finding other kids in bands, doing 'zines, and making art on their own terms.

"Dallas could have a lot of stuff going on," says Simons, on the phone from Austin. "There could be a totally great scene in Dallas. Too bad there's no kids. Who's getting together to start a scene?"

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