Just a 'Misprinted' Misfit

Misprint Magazine is by far my all-time favorite entertainment publication, or any publication for that matter. It never fails to put me in a better mood than I was prior to opening one of their 15 issues, which are hilariously titled in accordance to the topics discussed/mercilessly ridiculed (I.E.- The Gun Issue, The SXSWasted Issue, The Texas Issue).

The best thing about Misprint is that it's written and published in the heart of our own state capital, and it's known for belligerently mocking and tearing apart the culture (including music, art, events, etc.) of Texas' weirdest (and most badass) city.

I plan to embark on a quest to become the next Misprint intern because I am nothing if not graciously sarcastic and intent on being an elitist in the music industry simply because I have the the right to be.

Here is an excerpt discussing a few classic American novels, from The Decadence Issue:

About Orwell's 1984: "This work of non-fiction chronicles the most terrifyingly infamous year of the '80s, when the trifecta of Rick Springfield, the Cocteau Twins and Ronald Reagan were placing all aspects of pop culture under their control. Basically everyone had to wear ripped jeans, ridiculous haircuts and brutally oppress the fringes of society. And also lust after your good friend's woman and wonder where you can find one like that."

About Hemingway's For Whom the Bell Tolls: "You can ignore what it says on the back about the horrors of war and the human condition when confronted by one's own mortality and all that other nonsense. Today, respected critics read Hemingway's masterpiece as a cautionary allegory about a little band called Metallica after they cut their hair and stopped drinking beer. In fact, don't even bother reading it. Your time is way better spent listening to Ride the Lightning over and over until you can play all the solos."


On the Hunt for Black Gold!

KTSW is home to a wide variety of specialty shows that are aired throughout the week. Local listeners can enjoy anything and everything from Texas country to death metal. One particular show, however, brings something familiar, yet also new to “the other side of radio.”

Nick Kukowski, an electronic media senior, hosts a show called “ ’Illbilly Ruckus” which airs every Friday night from 10 p.m. to 12 a.m. Those who tune in would hear the upbeat, country “jangle” of past and present rockabilly artists. Older rockabilly artists might include famous Texan Buddy Holly, Elvis Presley, or Jerry Lee Lewis. More recent examples of rockabilly artists include Flametrick Subs and Mr.Lewis and the Funeral 5, both of which originated, and still play shows, in Austin.

Rockabilly was destined to breakthrough as a popular genre in 1953 when Elvis Presley walked into Sun Records in Memphis, TN and made his first recording, according to Billy Poore in his book Rockabilly: A Forty-Year Journey.

So what exactly is rockabilly?

Kukowski said rockabilly is defined by not only the “boogie” sound of the music itself, but also by the content of the lyrics. Oftentimes, rockabilly artists or bands will portray themselves as rebels, outlaws or “good-for-nothin’ law-breakin’ scoundrels.” Examples of specific rockabilly songs would be “Jailhouse Rock” by Elvis Presley or “Jump, Jive an’ Wail” by Brian Setzer of Stray Cats.

Many people are fans of this genre still today. They are simply unfamiliar with the term “rockabilly”, which is exactly why Kukowski chose to deejay this type of specialty show.

“I just thought it would be something cool and different,” said Kukowski. “It’s something that people enjoy, but maybe don’t know much about.”

He said he hopes to influence more people to listen to rockabilly by playing some of the genre’s best artists, and also by giving band information and details prior to each song.

Before ‘Illibilly Ruckus, he hosted a metal show called “Razor’s Edge” from Fall ‘06-Fall ’07, and he has been involved in many areas of KTSW in his time here at Texas State.

Kukowski said he does take song requests, but only beforehand because he makes the show’s playlists ahead of time. Requests can be emailed to hillbillyruckus@gmail.com, and more information about the show can be obtained at ktsw.net or myspace.com/illbillyruckus.


Annual KTSW music festival set to deliver ‘energy’ next year

Texas State’s radio station, KTSW, has organized and conducted its own free promotional music festival for the past two years. The festival has been dubbed the name “MR.Fest,” which stands for My Radio Fest.

MR.Fest debuted in April 2008 at Lucy’s, now Bar One-41. Alternative rock group Sputnik Monroe came all the way from Los Angeles to headline the act, but before their set, the audience at Lucy’s eagerly witnessed music by Petals, Funkotron, Spank and Three Leaf. The festival proved to be a success, which persuaded KTSW to try to make this an annual event.

The second MR.Fest took place in May, but this time the station decided to stretch the festival out and make it an all-day event. Different music genres filled San Marcos from 11 a.m. until 1 a.m. with sets at The Coffee Pot, Texas Skate, Classic Tattoo and Triple Crown. Austin’s Black Joe Lewis and the Honeybears closed the festival with a soulful finale at Bar One-41.

Emily Geoca, pre-psychology sophomore, has attended both of the festivals, and said she is eager to make an appearance in 2010.

“I really enjoyed all of the bands that played, and the atmosphere and energy were fabulous,” said Geoca.

According to KTSW station manager Adam Swank, electronic media senior, next year’s MR.Fest might even be extended to a two-day long event, but plans have yet to be finalized.

Attendance at the festival increased from last year to this year. Also, the more word that is spread about MR.Fest, the more likely the town will see bigger named bands in the lineup.


Jack White makes legendary collaborations

Jack White, most prominently known as the front man of Detroit-based rock duo, The White Stripes, has embarked on a myriad of different musical collaborations over the past few years.

White’s latest endeavor is rumored to be a fusion of his own rock genius with a well-known band called The Rolling Stones. Legendary guitarist and songwriter Keith Richards announced in Rolling Stone magazine that White is scheduled to make an appearance on the band’s upcoming LP, which they will begin recording next year.

White also starred in David Guggenheim’s latest film 'It Might Get Loud', alongside U2’s David Howell Evans, or The Edge, and Led Zeppelin’s Jimmy Page. The film, released this month, documents the “coming together” of three of the most influential guitarists spanned across the past 50 years.

According to MTV.com, The White Stripes unexpectedly cancelled 17 tour dates in September of 2007, announcing drummer Meg White’s acute anxiety disorder as the cause. As of today, the band has yet to play a live show aside from a performance on Late Night with Conan O’Brien in February this year.

The surprise hiatus did not seem to slow White’s unfaltering involvement in the music industry. He has continued to record and perform live with The Raconteurs, a blues-rock band he formed with solo artist Brendan Benson in 2005. The group has released two successful albums so far including Broken Boy Soldiers in 2006 and last year’s Consolers of the Lonely.

White’s most recent attempt at an alternative rock band is The Dead Weather, which he formed with Alison Mosshart of The Kills, Dean Fertita of Queens of the Stone Age and Jack Lawrence of The Raconteurs. The foursome debuted at the opening of White’s recording studio, Third Man Records, in the country music capital of Nashville on Mar. 11 of this year. The band released their first single Hang You From the Heavens shortly after their first live performance. The Dead Weather’s first full-length album, Horehound, was released this summer, and includes a cover of Bob Dylan’s New Pony.

A note to all Jack White fans in the area: the group is scheduled to play Oct. 4 at Austin City Limits music festival.

New band makes presence known in Houston, Austin areas

The group of 20-something, small-town, big-dreamer musicians is armed and ready with a boxy, hot rod DeVille, an array of overdrive and effects pedals and a tough-as-nails will to turn heads and change lives.
Heroine Stereo is Josh Homme meets a younger, more hostile version of Patti Smith by unleashing a traditionally rough sound with a new technique.
Casey Horn, lead vocalist and guitarist, and Thom Truver, guitarist and additional rock provider, have been making the purest form of rock music together practically since they could walk. They went from The Gentlemen’s Club to Shake Shake to their current and most notable project, Heroine Stereo, give or take a few other bands.Now, teamed with drummer Robby Fruge and bassist Kevin Higgins Jr., the boys are back and ready to feed every mind, body and soul willing to listen with a profound, raw alternative sound that still motivates listeners to get down on the dance floor.
The foursome is recording their first six-track EP and plan to have a full-length album out by December.

Horn, also the songwriter, said Queens of the Stone Age, Deftones, Spoon and The Toadies heavily influenced him in style. There are definite similarities in sound and lyric content, but Horn adds enough of his own touch to wow his devout listeners.
Horn shows a softer side in comparison to the raw, edgy melodies with lyrics such as “don’t it make you sad that we’re just chemicals waiting for connection/ We’re all wandering around our lives waiting for a speck of attention,” from the song titled “This is the Night.”
Guitarist Thom Truver said his favorite songs to play are “The Bronze Age,” “Stones and Glass Houses” and “You Must Be an Alien.”
“Those three are the best, mostly because we can, and have been able to, play them with our eyes closed and can spend more time entertaining the audience, such as the ladies,” Truver said.
Heroine Stereo formed in June of this year is unsigned, but has played a number of shows, most of which have taken place at the newly founded Trash Bar Texas in Humble. Horn said he thinks the shows have drawn in a fairly large crowd for such a new collaboration.
As far as upcoming shows, the band is scheduled to play again at Trash Bar Texas this Friday and at Super Happy Fun Land in downtown Houston Saturday. They recently booked a show in Austin for Sept.18 at The Parlor on East North Loop Boulevard and plan to schedule more in the Austin and San Marcos areas during the next few months.
Heroine Stereo may be a new band, but each member has been playing some form of music from early on. Truver said he loves to entertain and hopes the right people notice them, but for now, he’s just having fun jamming with his best friends and partaking in his passion.


An Unwelcome Guest(s)

Hell-raising and absolutely unnecessary, ants have made our home their home. It started out with just a tiny couple finding shelter around the edges of our living room rug. Then, more and more trickled in...dominating our couches and trailing across the not-wood floors we're forced to walk on if we intend to visit the kitchen, a fairly common area of the apartment.

There truly is power in numbers, let me tell you. I cannot even sit on my own damn couch for fear of being attacked by the vicious organisms. They're relentless and uncontrollable, especially when you have the SuckFest management team in control of your apartment complex.

Ants. You are hated even more than you know. And you thought just the picnickers hated you. Well now the entire world hates you. You have been warned.