This is where thoughts become things.

Hi, I'm Daniela. Welcome to my personal lair on the Internet. This is where I write about storytelling, activism, technology and pop culture. Sometimes I post videos. I update my lair when the mood strikes me. Follow me on Twitter for daily updates (@dcap).

Tag : show

On My Radar: The Shondes & JIVE GRAVE

I’ve been in hiding to focus on my projects, but breaks from hermit-hood are necessary to maintain my sanity. I was only out of the country for a month, but thanks to the rapid cycle of growth and death in NYC, I already have a list of new bands, venues, and restaurants to check out.

Last Thursday (10/28) I went to my  first show since returning from my 30-day shoot in Paris. My BFF invited me to join her on her trek to Bushwick — my old hood — and we ended up at House of Yes for JIVE GRAVE‘s BLACKONE EP release party.

When I exited the train at the Grand L stop, I expected to be overwhelmed by art school kids, but instead found myself surrounded by local families. I enjoyed the site of them carrying armfuls of groceries, teens texting each other on the corner, and dads with their sons returning from karate class. I basked in the warm bustle of early evening street life. As nostalgia momentarily washed over me, my thoughts drifted back to my two years spent in the rapidly gentrifying nabe. It was a time of my life that I’ll always look back on with a mix of fondness and sadness. After being in NYC since 2004, and despite so many youthful distractions, Bushwick was the first place I ever “felt” like an adult.

We arrived at House of Yes pretty late, but the first band hadn’t even finished their soundcheck yet so we had plenty of time. When they finally did go on I wasn’t a fan (frustratingly off-key lead singer), but immediately fell in love with the second band, The Shondes:

Out of nowhere (haven’t thought about those days in years), this band transported me to Ladyfest Bay Area 2002, and all the times I would drive to SF to catch shows by riot grrrl-inspired bands like Le Tigre and Bratmobile. I felt like if I flipped through my old CD case I would find their sleeve in between The Need and The Gossip.

I brought my 7D to the show out of habit, not intending to use it. I didn’t even bring my audio adapter or external mic, but felt like if something went down that pulled my camera to my eyes, I would let it happen.

I haven’t uploaded any photos yet but had to share this quick clip of JIVE GRAVE’s set. Each band member wore the same creepy Eyes Wide Shut-like mask, complete with painted eyebrows. The trembling symbols and matching faces onstage made me feel like I was about to witness a secret ritual reserved for hidden rooms on Ivy league campuses. Geo Wyeth may look like Wolverine’s little brother (in a good way), but his heartbreakingly dark (and uplifting lyrics) reveal a tender side and flare for showmanship:

Geo prefaced one of the songs by announcing “This next one is about colonialism. We all know what that means, right? We all went to college?” What followed were some jams that made me want to simultaneously take notes and pogo. Geo’s voice is nasally, addictive, and his inflections kind of echo around my ears and provide a playful contrast to the artfully arranged melodies.

…I had a closing paragraph here about the connection between my camera, music, Paris, and my identity in NYC, but Dreamhost service crashed in the middle and I don’t feel like retyping. BUT! I will say that I am in the middle of a significant transition in my life and am starting my “dream job” next week.

As a result of all this change, I am going to be open to the idea of creating a personal vlog in December to document what’s to come. Yes, you may see me rambling in front of a camera on a regular basis. Self-indulgent? Yes, fo sho. But I am for anything that helps me to thrive and inspires creativity.

Five Things You Missed At The 5/2 Bat For Lashes Show @ Music Hall Of Williamsburg

On Saturday night, Natasha Khan, creator and enchantress behind Bat For Lashes, played the Music Hall Of Williamsburg and blew the crowd away with her range (she’s one of few artists who sound the same live as they do on their albums) delicate dance moves and journey-through-your-grandma’s-attic set design.

>>More Bat For Lashes Photos In Bashira Webb’s Flickr Set<<

The former pre-school teacher’s last Brooklyn tour date to support Two Suns held a special meaning for me; I’ve been a fan since Fur & Gold and her Donny Darko-inspired video, but had never seen her live before.

What delighted me from the moment Natasha stepped on stage was that she lacked all of the snobby, jaded affectation that I’ve grown accustomed to at BK shows. With her genuine performances and limited but beguiling stage banter, she gave everyone in the crowd permission to smile, to love good music – openly – because it’s cool to care about things too, you know?

There are plenty of reviews up about the BFL tour, but here are some things you missed if you weren’t at Saturday’s show:

1) Lewis & Clark Made Everyone Want To Take A Nap/Buy More Beer

After gracing the stage at 9ishPM, Lewis & Clark explained that they had been asked to “calm the crowd.” They did a fab job … maybe a little too fab. My feet fell asleep, I wished I had a blanket nearby or at least a chair and although I appreciated their masterful and dramatic chamber rock, I was secretly glad when their set was done.

I guess I’m not a low-key kind of girl at live shows – but I would definitely listen to them if I was trying to snooze after a picnic in a park, which holds genuine value for me.

2) Scary Hipster Fart

Perhaps the lukewarm reception to Lewis & Clark wasn’t entirely in their control; Right before the show started, someone epically farted in the first two rows of people crowding the stage … It was not me, but I report this for thoroughness (journalistic integrity). But seriously, who does that? I’ll tell you who – Dirty, dirty hipsters. Like this one.

3) The Most Perfectly Shaped Heiny In All Of Creation

Although the house requested no flash use, people did indeed light up the night to capture Natasha Khan’s amazing zebra inspired bodysuit and her even more impressive fanny. I am in no way attempting to objectify/detract from her musical skills, but just imagine for a moment, all her talent manifesting as a perfect, perky bottom that 1000 years of pilates wrought – that is the back that baby got.

I overheard several butt specific conversations after the show, held by pining boys and admiring/jealous/horny? girls.

She makes my butt look like I’m dragging around two deflated beach balls.

4) Natasha Khan Intermittently Blowing Into A Wooden Box

I wish I had a photo to share. Was I the only one fascinated by this? I don’t know what the box was, but every once in a while she would blow into it and then move it about like an accordion. It made ghostly noises and now I’m kind of obsessed with figuring what it was. If you know, please share the deets.

5) The Four Mary Statues – Sign Of The Apocalypse?

Virgin Mary

In addition to a wolf blanket, a plethora of christmas tree ornaments and a few scary glowing dolls thrown in for good measure, Natasha had four eerie little Virgin Mary dolls propped right at the front of the stage. If I had thought of it before writing this post, I would have asked folks in the crowd what their significance was – why 4? Why not 5, or 3? Perhaps seasoned BFL attendees know the answer, but alas, I do not. I prefer to think of it as a sign that we share similar tastes

Two Suns is available now on Amazon for under $12 bucks. If you purchase it, you will be helping to chip away at an increasingly depressing deluge of bad music that is currently saturating the market.

The economy sucks, but do yourself a solid and purchase Two Suns. Anyone who can turn Daniel from The Karate Kid movie into a haunting song about adolescence and young love deserves major props.

My Girl In A Coma Story

– image via lightyearradio’s flickr

Tuesday evening (April 15th) I went to a show at The Knitting Factory. My favorite band Girl In A Coma were performing there and I figured it was time to stop being a hermit. I was an online fan for a long while (watching their videos, listening on itunes) but I felt it was time to finally see them live. I don’t live in Texas so I didn’t want to miss this opportunity.

I had such a great time, I wrote a little review and posted it on You R Here. I also uploaded some pictures and video to my Flickr account. On Wednesday (earlier today), I sent links to the contact info on the Girl In A Coma website, hoping the band would see what I recorded at some point.

A few hours later, THIS HAPPENED:

Your eyes are not deceiving you. Daniela’s favorite band posted her show review link and one of her videos on their MySpace page. This excited her so much she has been talking in the third person ever since.

Are there lessons to be learned from this – both in timely cross-site promotion and harnessing the power of UGC? Yes! Are there more organized ways that bands can use existing platforms, fan power and mobile content to document their tours effectively and on the cheap? Yep!

Do I want to talk about it? No! Not right now anyway. I’m sleepy.