Cap’n Jazz reunion show

Cap’n Jazz. Tomorrow/tonight. Empty Bottle, Chicago [via the A.V. Club]:

The A.V. Club has learned that seminal emo outfit Cap’n Jazz is playing a mini reunion set Friday night at the Empty Bottle as part of the Joan Of Arc Don’t Mind Control Variety Show.

So the question that started my awkward conversation with Mike Kinsella has been answered!

Top o’ 2009

I’m putting together a “best albums of the year list” like last year. However, I’m splitting it between this blog and the one I run over at True/Slant. That one should be up in the next day or two. This list is a collection, a round-up of runners-up, great albums I missed from last year and more. Enjoy:

Best Albums of 2009 Runners Up:

UUVVWWZUUVVWWZ

DDMMYYYYBlack Square

BalmorheaAll is Wild, All is Silent

Ear PwrSuper Animal Brothers III

Volcano ChoirUnmap

Andrew BirdNoble Beast

PterodactylWorldwide

Akron/FamilySet ‘Em Wild, Set ‘Em Free

Cymbals Eat GuitarsWhy There Are Mountains

Antony & The JohnsonsThe Crying Light

DodosTime to Die

Mi AmiWatersports

fun.Arm & Ignite

BLK JKSAfter Robots

Matt & KimGrand

PomegranatesEverybody, Come Outside!

Albums I Wish I Had More Time With, As They Probably Would’ve Ended Up On The List:

Brother AliUs

Mos DefThe Ecstatic

These Are PowersAll Aboard Future

Screaming FemalesPower Move

Best Album From Last Year I Finally Got To This Year:

The Gaslight AnthemThe ’59 Sound

An Awkward Conversation With Mike Kinsella About Cap’n Jazz Rumors

Setting: Lincoln Hall, Chicago. About 10:30ish, 15 minutes or so into Headlights‘ set, about a half hour after Maritime‘s performance.

Mike Kinsella and his friend (who I unfortunately did not get the name of) sitting at the southern end of the bar. I pop up before I leave the show…

Me: Hey, it was really nice meeting you.

Mike Kinsella: Yeah man, you too. [shakes hand]

Me: Hey, I know this is a little odd, but I have to ask. I heard rumors Cap’n Jazz are getting back together… Is that true?

MK: I don’t know, are they getting back together?

MK’s friend: Well, what do you think? Do you think Cap’n Jazz should get back together, or should they leave it behind, keep it in the ground? What do you want Cap’n Jazz to do?

Me: [clearly flustered] I… umm… I think they should do whatever makes them happy.

MK: So, what makes me happy?

Me: Umm….

MK: You wrote the paper, so what makes me happy?

Me: I… um…

MK: So what was your conclusion?

Me: Well, I said the conclusion was… unknown.

And so it went… The rest was a bit of a jumble, and that beginning of me embarrassing myself in front of Kinsella and his friend isn’t word-for-word because its been a few hours and I clearly could have forgotten a word/sentence.

But, Kinsella’s a good sport for even dealing with my “hey, I’m some random fan, answer my every question!” trope I busted out. Kinsella and his friend were certainly very nice to me, and I wish I could have stayed and chatted longer.

But, whatever happens with the reunion rumors, I just hope the Cap’n Jazz guys actually make whatever decisions because they want to. But, considering the amassed discography that makes up the Cap’n Jazz family tree, it’s clear they’ve all been doing things the way they want to for some time. And that’s what makes them all continue to create strong, vital music today, with or without a Cap’n Jazz reunion.

Rumored Cap’n Jazz and Owls Reunions

Indie Rock Reviews have posted information regarding a rumor that beloved Chicago emo acts Cap’n Jazz and Owls may reunite. Take a look [Thanks Ori Nevo for the tip]:

With Pavement’s reunion plans all but finalized, it was only a matter of time before other defunct acts added their name to the list. The latest: Chicago’s Cap’n Jazz.

It might sound too good to be true, but according to a close source, the band — Tim Kinsella, Mike Kinsella, Sam Zurick, Victor Villarreal and Davey von Bohlen — has been rehearsing old material in hopes of putting together a 10-date tour for summer 2010. While nothing is confirmed, the source says the five performers were asked to learn their individual parts for five songs.

Sure, IRR won’t be spilling the beans on their source, so who knows the veracity of that statement. However, it’s not like a reunion would be impossible: The Kinsella brothers are quite close, and Sam and Victor have been in so many Kinsella-related projects it’s hard to keep count. And as for Davey, he’s still a close friend of the band, having recently opened for Mike Kinsella’s full-band Owen gig in Chicago back in September. So who am I to say what may happen?

I’ll try and dig up some information myself. In the meantime, stay tuned for what could be an interesting couple of reunions.

College Student Needs To Pay Attention In History Class

The Indiana Daily Student‘s Cory Barker recently put out his “Best of the Decade” list on emo.

Fine enough.

Except that he begins with this little quote:

Before 2000, we’re pretty sure that the word emo didn’t even exist.

What?

No need to really delve into this, but shouldn’t Barker have, I don’t know, say, done some research before writing such a statement? I’m sure if Cory had taken the time to even type “emo” into Wikipedia, he would have figured out the word existed for a solid 15 years before the turn of the millennium.

People have been riding the Washington Post for an error about a Public Enemy song, one which most folks would have never dug up had the Post not made the correction. But type “emo” into Goggle news in the next 24 hours and Barker’s quote will come up as clear as day and as misinformed as all those TV news stations that have “uncovered” emo the past few years.

Another big screw up on the list? Not mentioning Say Anything’s …Is a Real Boy, which is far superior to the fairly bloated In Defense of the Genre. But, that’s just my opinion.

The more and more I agree with Christopher R. Weingarten

Eye Weekly has a pretty great interview with Christopher R. Weingarten, formerly of good ole’ Parts & Labor, now known most prominently for his Twitter account, 1000TimesYes.

Anyway, Weingarten has some pretty stellar things to say about the omnipresence of emo and indie in the early part of the decade, the impact of crowdsourcing on music journalism, and many more. Just take a look at what he has to say about brokeNCYDE:

What the worst records you’ve had to endure?
Well, obviously the Brokencyde record… I hate to dog on those guys because it’s kind of an internet meme to make fun of Brokencyde. And if someone pitched the idea of southern bounce beats plus screamo, I would totally say that sounds like a great idea. The only record I’ve heard that’s worse than Brokencyde is the Johnny Cash Remixed record.

Nuff said.

All emo at True/Slant

I’m still kicking it over at True/Slant, and my latest is a piece on an Australian news site’s puff piece on the new My Chemical Romance album.

Read it. Reblog it. Tweet it. Tumblr it. Love it.