October 28th, 2009 · 14 Comments · By

The Super Vacations are back in town tonight! I cannot praise this band enough. I truly feel as though they are one of the best bands coming out of Virginia and I think they have great potential. They play surf rock branching off from a genealogy of stylistic influences including The Beach Boys and Sonic Youth. I highly recommend them to fans of all these Jersey bands like Real Estate and The Vivian Girls, with whom they happen to share tonight’s bill and a few tour dates. The Vacays actually rock a lot harder than any of those bands even though The Vivian Girls are the primary draw tonight. If you thought ill of The Vacations after catching them at the Tea House with Whatever Brains and The Invisible Hand last spring, please note their set was hampered by some serious sound problems related to the light switch. I’m pretty sure they’re set to play first tonight so I hope everyone manages to catch them. The Invisible Hand is also playing and who would want to miss that, especially when they have three new songs to premiere. The show is at The Outback Lodge at 9 and it’s $10. The Starr Hill ticketing site warns a “$2 surcharge may be required under 21.”

Also tonight: Mike Doughty plays at The Southern. He’s that guy from the 90s band Soul Coughing–a band intermingled with the Sublimes and Smash Mouths of the second half of that decade. It’s $16 and starts at 8.

Tags: preview

14 responses so far ↓

  • 1 James // Oct 28, 2009 at 11:32 am

    I’m gonna out myself as a big dork here (ha) and proudly claim that I was actually a pretty big Soul Coughing fan, for a few years. Always thought they suffered from comparison to their “peers” … they had some pretty unusual and smart shit going on, especially for a major label / pop-radio band in the late-90’s. the weird breakbeat rhythm-section stuff, the absolutely bizarre & brilliant use of samples (Raymond Scott, Andrews Sisters, etc) and the weird over-enunciated sing-talking with fuax-beat cut-up lyrics… they were kinda great. “Screenwriter’s Blues” is still amazing, “Super Bon Bon” and “Circles” are weird catchy pop songs that hold up … I thought that band was pretty awesome, for a while.

    That said, Doughty’s solo stuff since their breakup has been fairly underwhelming. At it’s very, very best it’s about 25% as good as it was with his 3 former bandmates… at it’s worst, it’s just self-indulgent fan-feeding. I saw the guy play in Brooklyn in 2004, and it was the epitome of the type of show where everyone is already a big fan who wants to have their expectations justified, rather than a show where people like great music and want to hear a talented guy play some of it. He’s one of those people who has just become locked into an diminishing spiral of mutual congratulation with his small-but-obsessive fanbase, which unless you’re drinking the koolaid is not a particularly fun thing to watch. Plus, the older I get, the more Doughty’s voice is the thing which sounds most dated and embarrassing about the band, despite occasional moments of brilliance…

    Anyhow, FYI that’s happening, but for my money the good show tonight is the Viv Girls / Invis Hand / Super Vac. thing. I’m pretty sure I’ve had a legitimate FUN experience at the Outback Lodge exactly once… and it was the last time the Vivian Girls played there.

  • 2 j // Oct 28, 2009 at 11:45 am

    Obvs the SV/VG?/IH show is the one to check out tonight. And Doughty’s solo stuff has been very hit or miss. But lumping Soul Coughing in with Smashmouth and Sublime is ill informed and mean.

  • 3 Jo // Oct 28, 2009 at 12:11 pm

    I’ll chime in and say that I agree almost about Doughty, or, I agree, but in a different way. I’ve always appreciated him, but I’ve also always found him wildly inconsistent, totally hit or miss. I feel basically the same about Soul Coughing and the solo stuff–there are some great songs that I completely love (you mentioned some of the great SC ones, and I think White Lexus and a couple of other solo ones are simple and awesome), and then I find the rest of it utterly forgettable.

    I, too, attended a pretty culty Doughty show in Brookly (don’t remember if it was the same one), but had a good time because all I was really after was the real life analog to my overall Doughty listening experience. I got that.

    Don’t know if that’s enough to get me to go to a Doughty show now, but I do think he’s valuable, very, if only for a very small percentage of his stuff. …The other show is probably a safer bet *now*, certainly.

  • 4 jon bray // Oct 28, 2009 at 3:01 pm

    The Hand is going on FIRST! plleeeeeeaaasse come early… we’ve got three new songs and we’re playing them in the first half of the set. 9pm suckas!

  • 5 Sarah // Oct 28, 2009 at 5:16 pm

    oh, i’m sorry. i did not realize that three bands who were making “alternative rock” around the same time wasn’t enough basis to consider them “intermingled.” consider me mean, consider me ill-informed. and breezy. please, also breezy.

  • 6 Bartley // Oct 28, 2009 at 5:23 pm

    Yeah, I don’t think I would put Soul Coughing in there with Sublime and Smashmouth for tons of reasons. Yes they were all bands at about the same time, but that’s about all really. And Sublime and Smashmouth had hits, whereas I wouldn’t really say that about Soul Coughing. I might put a band like Lit on that list with Sublime and Smashmouth though.

    And the Outback is always fun. Way more fun than the fucking tea bazaar which is always hot as shit, cramped, too bright, and no choice of anything other than fancy pants microbrews.

    I do not get the buzz over the Vivian Girls though. Shitty, lofi, boring, blah.

  • 7 HORSEFANG // Oct 28, 2009 at 5:50 pm

    When is the Chumbawamba show?

  • 8 Jacob // Oct 28, 2009 at 6:53 pm

    Tomorrow at Dust! Fastball is opening. So psyched!

  • 9 Psh // Oct 28, 2009 at 6:53 pm

    Wouldn’t maybe go so far to say mean, but definitely ill-informed. That said, uber sad to miss The Vivian Girls. The dirty brunz is where America’s at.

  • 10 baconfat // Oct 29, 2009 at 9:59 am

    i bet i’m the only one who reads this blog who has actually seen fastball in charlottesville. it was a LONG time ago. and they were opening for a far superior band.

  • 11 invisible hand // Oct 29, 2009 at 2:45 pm

    I saw fastball too!

  • 12 drunktigers // Oct 29, 2009 at 3:48 pm

    didn’t fastball just play at the outback lodge in may? I could swear I heard them playing their big radio hit live and acoustic on The Corner recently as I was driving to a Laser Tag club officers board meeting or something.

  • 13 Sarah // Oct 29, 2009 at 6:27 pm

    read: intermingled. literal meaning: mixed in. what IS ALL OF THE FUSS ABOUT? again, they were contemporaries were they not?

  • 14 HORSEFANG // Oct 30, 2009 at 3:40 pm

    Yes, Fastball was upstairs @ Outback in May. Whilst Wizardry, Corsair and Horsefang played downstairs.