Scene, Heard

Nate Fowler

used to be our neighbor, back when we both lived at the Turtle Dove Apartments on Matilda and McCommas. This was a couple of years ago, when we thought nothing of living in a joint with a busted hot water pipe, no A/C and a constant pool party that made staying up for days on end a fact of life. (Because of the noise, not our participation, mind you.) Back then, Fowler had left his band, The American Fuse, to begin working on a solo album. He had no idea how long it would take.

Now, at long last, that album is finished, and after a lengthy layoff, Fowler says he's finally "ready to get back in the park and play ball." Fowler's season begins on October 25 at the Gypsy Tea Room, billed as Nate Fowler's Elixir. He hasn't really been onstage since his brief stint in Clumsy, and you can tell from his periodic phone calls that he's itching to plug in again. Backing him up will be drummer Chris Purdy (formerly of Slowpoke and most recently seen singing and playing guitar for Ruffled Feathers), bassist Tommy Hale and guitarist Raz Callahan. Fowler was hoping to have his new album available by the time this show rolled around, but manufacturing delays at Crystal Clear Sound mean the earliest he can release it is mid-November. And since it's tough to release a new album during the shopping march to Christmas--most people only want to buy greatest-hits collections and whatever is on their friends' and families' shopping lists--Fowler may have to wait until January or later to put out the album.

It's not the ideal situation for Fowler, who previewed his forthcoming disc by releasing a split EP earlier this summer with Milton Maples. But he can deal with it as long as he's able to get back onstage and play his songs for people. He's been keeping it to himself for too long. Check out what he's up to...

Speaking of Chris Purdy, he called the other day to report that his band, Ruffled Feathers, isn't around anymore and hasn't been for about three months. Seems that when Copper Records, the Houston-based label that was set to release Ruffled Feathers' debut (at one point titled Whole Year Inn), went belly-up, so did the band. But in addition to drumming with Nate Fowler's new project, Purdy has started another band, Nope. If his previous stints as bandleader (in Ruffled Feathers and Girl) are any indication, expect good straight-up rock songs, which are always welcome. The group makes its debut on October 27 at Muddy Waters. We're hopeful this band will have better luck...

If you saw N'Dambi perform an a cappella version of "The Sunshine" on October 12 as part of the Deep Relief benefit and were wondering when you could see her do a full set, wonder no more. N'Dambi will play at the Curtain Club on November 3. If you need help making a decision, go out and pick up a copy of her brand-new, double-disc Tunin' Up & Cosignin'. Now. (The disc was already at No. 11 on the sales charts at Tower Records when we stopped by a few days after its release.) One day, you'll be able to say you knew her when. And that day will be soon...

Slow Roosevelt is set to release its third album, Weightless, on November 6, with a CD-release shindig on November 9 at Curtain Club, with Edgewater and South FM. (Show up late, if you know what we're saying.) We're told the disc, again produced by Alex Gerst, more accurately reflects the group's live show, which we've always been bigger fans of than their recorded efforts. (The members of the band would probably admit that their albums have never lived up to what they do onstage either.) So you have our word: We'll give it a chance. We know not many people will believe that, but hey, not many people believe a lot of what we say. We're used to it...

The latest Buzz-Oven sampler is out, featuring two songs each from Hi-Fi Drowning, Macavity and South FM. Hi-Fi Drowning's tracks ("Ato-Matic" and "Paba Free") show how far the band has come since its last record, the disappointing Narci Darvish. As surprised as we are to say this, it definitely makes us want to pick up their next effort, which should be in stores before the year is over. And Macavity's pair of songs ("Another Try at Something New" and "Floating") prove that these kids--we're pretty sure only front man Beau Wagener is old enough to drink--are a band to keep an eye on. (Idol Records is releasing its debut EP, Falling Hard in the Key of E, later this year.) As for South FM, well, they're on the CD, too. All three bands will play an all-ages show at the Ridglea Theater on October 26, starting at 8 p.m. so the kids can come out. If FW is too far for some of you, they'll be doing it all over again at Trees on November 11 at 5 p.m. OK? OK...

On October 18, Eleven Hundred Springs' gear trailer was broken into in San Antonio, and almost all of the band's equipment was stolen. Go to www.elevenhundredsprings.com for a list of the equipment and pictures, so you can identify it if you happen to run across it. And go see the boys at the Gypsy Tea Room on October 26 so they can start paying for new gear.

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