By Jim Schutze
By Rachel Watts
By Lauren Drewes Daniels
By Anna Merlan
By Lee Escobedo
By Alice Laussade
By Scott Reitz
After countless bass players, a few guitar players, a handful of name changes, more tattoos than most cell blocks, and at least a couple of years teetering on the brink, Darlington is no more. Stevey Stress (also known as Steve Visneau) and Brigitte Darlington (no telling what he'll also be known as in the future) decided to go their separate ways at the end of August, following a month that had seen them release a live album on Mutant Pop Records, a seven-inch single on Denton's She's Gone Records, and appear on a Laser Trax compilation. A handful of songs were left in the can, so expect a few posthumous releases, and Darlington (the singer-guitarist, not the band) has said that he'll put out a solo disc later this year or early next. As for Visneau, he's still working with Todd Deatherage, and you can be sure he'll turn up in some project before you have a chance to miss him...
The Curtain Club's Cabe Booth and Ed Lamonica, along with Tony Edwards (formerly of One Ton Records), are working together on a live, all-acoustic CD, which will benefit the club's pet charity--and it's a fine one--the Stonewall Jackson School for the Deaf. The disc (a joint effort between the Curtain Club and Crystal Clear Distribution) is being recorded at the Curtain's sister club, the Liquid Lounge, every Wednesday in September, and should be in stores in November, after former Course of Empire drummer Chad Lovell mixes and masters it. Pleasant Grove, El Gato, and the Immaculates kick things off on September 6, and Blue.Sky.Black, Flickerstick, Fivecat, Valve, the Hundred Inevitables, and many more will also take part. We'll urge everyone to turn out, and leave it at that, since our fingers have been known to override our good intentions...
Following the departure of booking agent Robin Phillips, and the brief (something like two days...or was it two hours?) tenure of Chad Ferman, Kris Youmans is back booking shows at Rubber Gloves Rehearsal Studios. We say back, because if you remember, Youmans once shared the club's booking duties with Phillips and others, before the job was consolidated and left in Phillips' capable hands for much of the past year. Youmans is also no stranger to the conflict of interest whispers that, apparently, led Ferman, a member of Kid Chaos and [DARYL], to step down; he had to endure the same sniping during his previous stint at Rubber Gloves, thanks to his status as singer-guitarist with the now-defunct Post From Vermont. (You know, "Hey, my band hasn't ever played at Rubber Gloves, but his group got to open for Jimmy Eat World." That kind of thing.) But whether it's Youmans or Ferman or whomever, you find someone in Denton that can book shows at Rubber Gloves with no involvement at all with any local bands--whether he or she is a member or merely a friend--and you've more than likely found someone who will do a poor job. Look, just be happy that someone at Rubber Gloves is bringing Wheat (September 22) and Joan of Arc (October 5) and Les Savy Fav (October 13) to the area. If you don't like who's opening up, show up later. It's not like Rubber Gloves has air-conditioning anyway. OK? OK...
Following what has seemed like an interminable wait--maybe because we wanted it yesterday--Mandarin will release its debut album, Driftline, in the next few weeks on Two Ohm Hop Records, with release shows on September 15 at the Mercury in Austin (with Knife in the Water and Centro-matic's Will Johnson, playing a solo set), and September 29 at Dan's Bar in Denton, with the Ditch Kids. From the little we've heard by the band--which includes singer-guitarist Jayson Wortham, guitarist Brian Smith, drummer David Douglas, and multi-instrumentalists Peter Salisbury and Matthew Leer--it should be one of the better records released here or anywhere this year. In the meantime, catch Mandarin opening for Jets to Brazil on September 11 at Trees. And if you don't know why you should already be at Trees, check out Chris Ryan's story on the Jets on page 106 (and no, that's not the morning-show jock from KEGL-FM), or pick up a copy of the band's just-out Four Cornered Night. You will not be sorry...
Speaking of Two Ohm Hop, Mandarin's label mates Sub Oslo and Yeti will perform in Portland on September 21, as part of the North By Northwest music festival, a spin-off of--you guessed it--the annual South By Southwest shindig in Austin. But they aren't the only locals headed north: Shabazz 3 will be making the trek as well, performing tracks off their newish debut Late Nite with Shabazz 3 the following night. So stop by, if you happen to be in the area. Which, we assume, does not apply to anyone...
The Browsers will kick off new booking agent Andrew Hime's reign at Denton's Brickhaus Café with a set on September 16, which happens to only be the group's second public appearance ever. In case you didn't know--and really, why would you?--The Browsers are fronted by singer-guitarist Don Cento, who you may have seen playing around town as the unofficial fifth member of Chomsky (on keyboards), or playing with The Tomorrowpeople, before they closed up shop. In case you need to be swayed, word is that the show is free...
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