Greetings from Moscow

Moscow, Idaho that is.  It’s amazing how many people came out tonight, and it’s a Monday night.  I don’t know what it is, but this last leg, this adventure into new territory, has been feeling really good.  The shows have been great and the people are so friendly and engaging. We played with Butterballs (previously, This Kid’s Not Supposed to be in the Family Portrait), a brother and sister combo with really beautiful music.  Update: Here’s a review from that show, including clips of every band playing! (excluding yours truly)

What’s the best thing after a seven hour drive?  Our show at The Lab in Missoula, Montana last night, that’s what.  We did a short Just Another Snake Cult set and it was awesome.  One of the friendliest, most intimate crowds of tour.  James Rabbit also put on one of their best shows of tour.  After our iji set came my favorite performance of tour, from an act called Bad Naked.

Bad Naked

Bad Naked played in bootie shorts, on a resonator acoustic bass, singing songs that made us laugh and made us cry (but mostly laugh).  He taught us that there’s no place like Missouri (except certain parts of Idaho).  It was strange in a very nice way.

I got to sleep in a cargo net on their porch.  Majestic.

A couple days before, we were in Salt Lake City.  Here’s me with their space-Jesus:

One of my favorite movies right now is the 1994 Trent Harris film, Plan 10 From Outer Space. The film mixes science fiction with Mormon theology, and takes place in Salt Lake City.  Here’s a picture of us at the Joseph Smith Sphinx (which is both real and in a really good scene in Plan 10):

The gate was locked so we had to hop it to get in.  A would-be worshiper contented himself with “borrowing a stone” outside to meditate on.

We played a short Just Another Snake Cult set there as well that went really well.  The show was in the sketchiest hidden basement compartment I’ve ever seen.  But great crowd.  And my second favorite band of tour played there, Typhoon from Portland, OR.  They were a 12-piece, with two drummers and string and horn sections.  I was blown away by their arrangements and dynamics.  They were really nice people as well.  See them if you ever have the chance.

Typhoon

Our northward drives have brought us back into snow and cold, which is bizarre after being in everything between California and Texas.

Lets see… continuing backwards.. Denver was also a good show full of warmth and friendliness.  We did a Just Another Snake Cult set there as well! (we’ve been fitting these in all over the place!)  A band called All Liver No Onions played and they were rad.

Kansas City was fun.  I love that city, and I regret not spending more time their while my friend Jamie was living there.

Between Houston, TX and Kansas City, MO was our longest drive.  Even though we split it in two we ended up driving for 12 hours straight.

Reading Rainbow at SXSWSXSW was exhausting but fun.  Temperatures in the upper 80°F’s.  Most of the fun to be had was going to the off-venue day-shows.  I finally saw Quintron for the first time, but it was cut short due to technical difficulties (incompetence on the part of the people putting on the show). Vetiver at SXSW Lets see.. Reading Rainbow was cool–I like their songs and harmonies–but I’m sure it’d be cooler with a full band.  Vetiver was great, but only got to play like three songs.   We played with Quiet Hooves who are also one of my favorite performances from tour.  Their recordings don’t do them justice.  Really creative and fun.  Sort of reminded me of the Unicorns or something.

The drive to Santa Fe had been longer than we anticipated, and we got a late start because of the new car. So after ten hours on the road we showed up miserably late to the cabin in the woods where we were supposed to play. But to our surprise the party was just getting started. Here’s some footage I shot of James Rabbit’s set:

Groovy crowds.

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