Odds & Ends

Looks like Pilotdrift is standing in a Water Sphere.

Good news: This week, Good Records made a formal announcement that surprised no one: They love Pilotdrift. Before, that fondness was hardly unofficial, as the local indie record store pimped the hell out of the Texarkana synth-rock band's self-released debut, Iter Facere, and hooked the group up with a sweet gig opening for The Polyphonic Spree on a West Coast tour earlier this year. But the folks at Good are taking that love a giant step further by releasing the band's sophomore LP, Water Sphere, on their label, Good Records Recordings. The album, which sees official release September 20, is the label's first release from a band outside Spree leader Tim DeLaughter's circle, and according to GRR manager Chris Penn, it's a sign of more to come.

"We're turning into a bona fide independent label," Penn says. "We've always been looking for something to be the catalyst. Pilotdrift seems to be the band to really start it."

Future releases are already in the works, including Flute Rock, a DVD starring Polyphonic flutist Audrey Easley tentatively slated for February 2006, and Tripping Daisy re-releases. Oh, and did we mention a freaking Tripping Daisy box set full of rarities? Penn isn't sure when that will be released, but as he puts it, "All that stuff is done, so once the project gets a head of steam, it'll happen pretty quick." Suh-weet.

The folks at Good say they're keeping their eyes open for the best local acts to sign, so who knows who might soon join GRR's roster? Could be Belefonte, the Plano lo-fi quartet who play their first-ever live show at Good Records on Tuesday at 6 p.m. when they open for Philadelphia's Pattern is Movement. The group, made up of 16- and 17-year-olds from Plano Senior High School, sound like they have much better taste in music than the rest of their class combined, and their four-track demos recall the best of early Flaming Lips and Beck. They're already beloved by the Good clerks, and this debut show should be interesting, at the very least.

All tomorrow's parties: Cabe Booth, house artist for the Curtain Club (all those band paintings on the walls there? Yeah, he did those), is throwing down at the Double Wide to celebrate his 3--cough, I mean, his most recent birthday on Friday, and joining him are the reunited Bobgoblin (complete with old-school uniforms), Peter Schmidt and Professional Juice. Pretty cool lineup, right? Well, former Observer music editor Sarah Hepola will oversee an equally worthwhile concert in her honor the next night, Saturday, at the Barley House, with Sorta, Salim Nourallah, Pleasant Grove and Chris Holt giving her the bon voyage treatment before she moves to New York City two days later. Would you rather help a longtime Dallas music fan get older or kick another longtime Dallas music fan out of town? Thanks to convenient scheduling, you can now do both.

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Spooky: With the rise of this week's feature band, Day of the Double Agent, also comes the fall of DotDA guitarist Daniel Huffman's other current project, Ghostcar. North Texas' finest improvisational space-jazz combo is now "a sleeping ghost," Huffman says, as trumpeter Karl Poetschke has moved to Colorado for a new job, and drummer Claydo Stinnett has taken a musical hiatus.

"He threw all his paintings away and sold his drum kits," says Huffman, who also played in Sivad with Poetschke and Ghostcar bassist Chris Perdue. Though Ghostcar concerts from early 2005 might turn out to be their last, the group is still alive in the form of unreleased studio sessions. Huffman is waiting for the right opportunity to cull more albums from his hours of tapes, like the fabulous The Flames of Satisfaction vs. the Flames of Despair Vol.1 CD-R from last year. The recording archive is a veritable gold mine of material waiting for an underground label. "There were some sonically difficult moments," Huffman says, "but there were some magical ones, too. That's just the nature of improvised music." --Michael Chamy

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