Last On The Bandwagon
Not exactly being Simon Cowell right on Austin's Ghostland Observatory
As a veteran music writer, I pride myself on being out in front of new music. I like to think I have fine tuned my ability to spot talent that immediately distances itself from the rest of the mediocre garage screamers and living room noodlers, and carries the potential to become "the next big thing."
I'm like Simon Cowell, but with a better hair cut and not as much chest hair protruding from the top of my T-shirt.
This bloated perspective on my scouting ability crash-landed back on Planet Reality two years ago when a friend of mine suggested I join him to see Austin's Ghostland Observatory at Warehouse Live.
"Awwww!" I thought to myself with a self-serving smirk on my face. "A chance to discover a new band and be the first writer around to spout wise about Texas's latest, greatest sonic flavor."
(Sidenote: My inner dialog is not actually so cluttered with purple prose. I took a little artistic license with that for the sake of this retelling.)
Awwww, what a dink I can be sometimes.
I walked into the Warehouse that night and the place was packed to the back bar with young adults who knew the lyrics to every one of the synthesized, soulful dance cuts from their then-latest album, 2008's Robotique Majestique. They also knew songs that dated back a few years like "Piano Man" and "Sad Sad City."
Even worse, everybody but me was very clued in about the wildly entertaining stage shows performed by hard-chargin' lead singer/guitarist Aaron Behrens (he's the one with the pigtails reminiscent of the iconic little girl from Wendy's restaurants signs) and nerdy keyboard player Thomas Turner (he often wears a cape and bears a slight resemblance to Napoleon Dynamite).
It seems that everybody in Texas was invited to the Ghostland Observatory party, but my invitation was lost in the mail. Not sure how the oddest couple with the greatest groove this side of Gnarls Barkley hid from me for so long, but never again.
For this Friday's show at Warehouse I am listening to the just released new album, Codename: Rondo, over and over until I know every verse and chorus. This time I will be front-and-center singing all the songs that few others know.
Then who will be dink?
Still me? Damn!
Ghostland Observatory, 8 p.m. Friday at Warehouse Live