Posts Tagged ‘music’

algunas canciones en español

Friday, August 14th, 2009

So now I need to keep up my Spanish.. though I want to, I haven’t gotten around to it much lately. But I guess it always helps to listen to some music with Spanish lyrics.
Here are two of my current favorites:


Joan Manuel Serrat – Mediterraneo


Calexico & Amparo Sanchez – Inspiraci�n

summer vibes

Saturday, August 8th, 2009

I’ve been back home for over a month now, and it feels like my trips to South America and Florida were ages ago. It wasn’t that hard to get used to being back; I started working a couple of days after I got home from Florida, and before I knew it, I was back in the daily routine.

Fortunately, on the 15th I got myself another small break; I attended the 4-day Dour festival in the south of Belgium. It’s quite a big festival, with mostly underground music; anything from hardcore to ska to indie to electronic music. I went with Otto, Josse and… Tim! Who had surprised everyone by coming back a month earlier than he’d told us.

5692_139923643664
Sitting by our tents singing songs

5692_139923743664
“at a Frans Bauer show”

Fun festival! I hadn’t really thought about the fact that it was in French-speaking part of Belgium though. So every now and then I had to dig back into my highschool-acquired knowledge of French.. quite some time ago, but along the way it started coming back a bit. Sometimes however, when I wanted to say something in French, all that came out was Spanish.. haha. I saw some great bands like Isis and The Red Chord, though on the second day I didn’t see much because of a hospital adventure (this time it wasn’t me). And on Saturday, day 3, I already went back home, because I didn’t want to miss the Big Rivers festival in Dordrecht AND two Couchsurfing friends from Spain who would be there. They also stayed with me two years ago during Big Rivers, and liked it so much they wanted to come back.

phoca_thumb_l__rob6180
Desorden Publico playing at the “big church” stage

5399655_l_ba61244d686a8c2848ec82b15924c891
with my CS friends from Spain

phoca_thumb_l__rob5862
crowd at Scheffersplein

phoca_thumb_l__rob6225
overview of Statenplein, while The Animals were playing

It turned out to be a good decision; it was fun to see my friends again, and the festival was just amazing. It’s become possibly my favorite festival over the years.. there is something about being able to see some great bands (anything from ska to blues to rock) on many different stages all throughout the old town of your city, accompanied by so many familiar faces. The festival was a bit smaller than last year, due the economical crisis, but still they managed to deliver a great line-up. Some of my favorites were Boo Boo Davis, The Upsessions, The Blackbirds (Beatles coverband from Hungary), The Toasters and Shiner Twins.

Besides that I’m trying to make something out of the summer, despite that I have to work. Ah, how I miss going to school and having a 8-week summer break.. haha. But it has worked pretty well so far. Of course there are the weekly concerts in the Wantijpark, always a fun place to hang out. Had a couple of barbecues with friends, visited some relatives, played a lot of music and biked to Rotterdam, where I visited some secondhand record stores and then took the Waterbus back.
I also had another Couchsurfer (from Austria/Italy) over earlier this week, and on Tuesday we set up our very own CS meeting, with about 15 people from Dordrecht, Rotterdam and Italy. It took place in one of the Irish pubs in Rotterdam. Great place, and they had this singer performing there, just with his acoustic guitar, playing Johnny Cash, Billy Joel, Simon & Garfunkel, Bob Dylan, The Kinks.. all in his own kind of Irish folk style. He was amazing. What a night.

While browsing around in the Plaatboef in Rotterdam, I found this little vinyl gem:

The other night I was listening to it on my headphones and noticed how fine the production was. The compositions may not be as good as Miles Davis’ Kind of Blue (though close), but it has an amazing sound I haven’t heard before on a jazz record. It’s just perfect.

jazz

Thursday, November 27th, 2008

Jazz has been in high rotation lately. Here are two of my current favorites.


Bill Evans Trio – Someday My Prince Will Come


Ella Fitzgerald & Joe Pass – Stormy Weather

If you want more.. check out Randal Corsen, a pianist from Curaao, who blends jazz with influences from classical, Antillean and Latin American music. I saw part of his show at North Sea Jazz last summer, and here you can watch most of the concert online. Great stuff!

Paris

Wednesday, November 26th, 2008

Two things that have once again amazed me:
– how time keeps flying
– how great it is to be ‘out’ (of town / the country) for a couple of days

Rewind to about a week and a half ago. On Friday I ended up pretty stressed out. Maybe it was just a busy day and the idea things would be busy for the next couple of days. A trip to Paris, work, a Sigur Rós concert. And the first class of a Spanish course I was about to start, for which I still had quite a lot of prepare (or so I thought).
Frankly I didn’t feel like going to Paris at all, I thought I’d rather just stay home and relax. But then I figured, no, this is exactly what I need. Nothing like a trip to another country to get away from everything.

(more…)

best Sunday ever

Sunday, November 23rd, 2008

In the morning I went to church. This lady got baptized, which is always kind of special to see, and it was just a good service in general.
After that I went to my parents’ for lunch, as usual. Always good to be there. Meanwhile it had started snowing; and not just a little bit. When I went home it was still going on; it felt kind of nice, biking through the snow.

At 3 there was a [F]luister show at the CBK, with two Japanese artists. I hadn’t been sure about going, but I figured I should.
Sure felt nice to enter a warm room, as I was half covered in snow. Tim and Jan were there, and some other guys I sort of know from the local music scene. It was nice to hang with them. Now the great thing about the [F]luister shows is that it’s in a very nice setting (a sort of art gallery located in an old building), the music is usually pretty relaxing and they’ve got a whole bunch of beanbags lying around.

fluister

First up was Midori Hirano and then Kazumasa Hashimoto. I liked them a lot; both combined their piano-playing with electronics, though the first leaned a bit more toward electronic music and the latter toward classical music.
During the shows it seemed like some people were either falling asleep or just sleeping, haha.. must admit that at times it was hard for me to keep my eyes open as well. Not that it was boring, but the whole thing was just so relaxing.

After the show I figured I’d go home, but Tim and Jan said they were going to grab a bite somewhere and I figured I’d go along. We ended up at Miró, this great Spanish tapas bar. We told the waitress to tell the cook to just make us something nice.. and boy, he did. It wasn’t exactly cheap but man, it was so worth it.

Somewhere in the evening, missing out on a BlueFish show at the Anarres goodbye party. But after having played there with Powerslib on Saturday, and seeing the interior of the place in its current state, I really had no intention on returning there.. haha.

Surely this had been one of the best Sundays ever.

tstgu review

Thursday, November 13th, 2008

Last week I saw The Spirit That Guides Us in Bibelot. Figured I’d write a review for 3voor12. In Dutch of course.

Check http://3voor12.vpro.nl/artikelen/artikel/40386127

Pukkelpop: after

Monday, August 18th, 2008

Pukkelpop was awesome. First of all the weather was as good as it gets, especially since the forecasts had been pretty shabby. We had a perfect temperature, it was sunny most of the time, and we didn’t get any rain at all.

Festival wise I guess it was pretty similar to Lowlands, but I liked it a bit better. There were more stages and they were smaller. All in tents, except for the mainstage. Sometimes this meant that the tents were absolutely packed, but if you got to a show early, you could always get up front easily.
The atmosphere was good, it seemed the people were in general less annoying and more polite. Also, very few times I had to wait in line for food, drinks, a toilet (Dixi’s, but they were generally pretty clean) or whatever.

Then of course the bands.. saw a lot of great shows. The best:
I was blown away by Sigur Rós. During the past week they have become one of my favorite bands. I started listening to their album Takk… about a week ago and I thought it was really great. At Pukkelpop they showed their film Heimat, which I’d heard great things about. I saw part of it and loved it (once I got home I immediately ordered the DVD). So by now I’d gotten pretty excited for their gig. They didn’t let me down, it was beautiful. Highlights were Gobbledigook (imagine an atmospheric post-rock show and then all of a sudden you get this) and Untitled 8 a.k.a. Popplagið (with the most intense and epic climactic buildup I’ve ever heard/seen).
Henry Rollins did a spoken word show and had some really positive, interesting and funny things to say as always. Incredibly inspiring. One funny thing was the story of his guide in a country in South East Asia. He wasn’t very good at English, which resulted in lines like: “WHAT’S YOUR LIFE?!” (instead of “How are you?”) and “Let’s put the biological against the tree” (let’s go pee).
The Ocean, a post/metalcore band from Germany, blew me away as well. They were really tight, hard and even though I’d only heard one of their songs in advance, it never got boring.
Metallica was of course the big headliner. They played well and it was obviously a ‘big’ show with fireworks and everything. I guess it just kinda cool to be able to say you’ve been to a Metallica show.
Menomena, a band from Oregon I’d never heard of. The three band members all sang and played different instruments. I guess it was post-rock, with very unconventional song structures. Quite impressive.
Other great shows were by MxPx, Kaizers Orchestra, Thrice, Iron & Wine, A Wilhelm Scream and As I Lay Dying. Also discovered some other cool new artists: Motek and Alela Diane.
In general I thought it was a great line-up, although I would have liked to see a bit more jazz, funk, soul, acoustic stuff or world music and less “British indie-rock”. But I guess that’s just the nature of the festival.

So now I’m back home, checking out a lot of new music, I’m really excited about it again. I’m glad that I went; I didn’t feel like it at all when I got back from Ukraine, but it was definitely worth it.

pukkelpop

Tuesday, August 12th, 2008

And tomorrow I’m leaving again, for the Pukkelpop festival in Belgium. Lots of good bands playing. Hope the weather will be good.

summer plans

Sunday, May 11th, 2008

Time for summer plans.

I just signed up for the Eurasia NYC 2008 in Kiev, Ukraine. NYC stands for Nazarene Youth Conference, so it’s a gathering of people between 15 and 29 from our churches in Europe and Asia. About a year ago I went to the NYC for North-West Europe in Scotland and that was great. For some reason I wasn’t so sure about going this time. But the reasons I could think of for not going didn’t seem very valid, so I’m just ignoring them. Should be pretty interesting for sure, not in the last place because it’s another new country for me, and it’s a former USSR one. Gotta wait until the 2nd of August though.

Besides that, I’ll probably be attending Pukkelpop, a big alternative music fest, kind of the Belgian version of Lowlands, which will take place from 14 – 16 August. I was thinking about going to Dour, since I missed out on that last year. But this year’s line-up is not too great, while Pukkelpop’s is. Another plus is that now I won’t have to miss out on the Big Rivers festival in my own town, where the Mad Caddies will be playing! Right on.

Pride Runs Deep tour

Saturday, May 10th, 2008

So from 19 through 27 April I went on tour with my band Pride Runs Deep. First time I ever did such a thing. To actually be able to do a tour was like a dream come true. Just being out there, on the road, and playing shows..
When I got home it felt really weird, like I’d been living in another world for a week, I guess it kind of felt like waking up from a dream. But I sure hope I’ll get to do this many more times.

To get an idea of where we went, here’s a map with the route (click to zoom):

So we had two shows in Germany, one in Croatia, one in Austria and three in Poland. This meant a LOT of driving. Most days were consisted of the following routine: sleeping – driving – waiting at the club – playing – sleeping. It was pretty exhausting, especially the two times we drove during the night. Still it was ok most of the time.

It was also great to check out two new countries: Croatia and Poland. In Croatia we were staying in an apartment in Zagreb, and there we had a day off so we got to check out the city a bit. Cool place. We saw quite a bit of Poland, although mostly roads and the areas around the clubs.

We all got along well, fortunately, and we met some cool people along the way. There was a lot of laughter, but still there were times I wished I could have done this with some of my close friends. For that matter, my views on the band haven’t changed, I’m still not sure if I should stick around.

Check:
Pictures at my Picasa
Videos on YouTube: compilation I and compilation II
Written at MySpace: tour report