Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Piñata Recording Artists Go To Hideout Block Party in Chicago: Saturday

Black Diet's Jonathan Tolliver and Southside Desire's Damien Tank went to Chicago last weekend for the annual Hideout Block Party (also called AV Fest, due to its recent synnnergy with the AV Club). They both wrote about their experience, so we'll publish both of them. Here's what they witnessed on Saturday.
Jonathan's Saturday:

Day 2 started with a bang. And by that I mean Damien woke up early to take a leisurely stroll around the neighborhood, and I threw up a lot after getting out of the shower. The Flat Iron shan't be trusted. After a short recovery period, we met up with my old roommate Frank for brunch at my favorite spot, The Silver Cloud.

Chicago doesn't get enough credit for their bikeability.

As I trepidatiously danced around my eggs, Damien and I came up with a plan for the day. We knew the first band we wanted to check out, Aimee Mann and Ted Leo’s new project, The Both, hit the stage around 5, so we budgeted time enough to do some window shopping and check out another Walgreens, cause that’s a hobby of mine. Damien isn’t weird like that. He probably is, just in other ways.
That Walgreens had a concierge.

Piñata Recording Artists Go To Hideout Block Party in Chicago: Friday

Black Diet's Jonathan Tolliver and Southside Desire's Damien Tank went to Chicago last weekend for the annual Hideout Block Party (also called AV Fest, due to its recent synnnergy with the AV Club). They both wrote about their experience, so we'll publish both of them. Here's their impressions of Friday.

Damien says:
Friday 9/6/13:
Jonathan and I rode the 6 AM Megabus from Minneapolis to Chicago. Jonathan usually only takes the overnight bus, so he was disoriented. He also chose not to sleep before getting on the bus, assuming he would be able to sleep well on a bus traveling east at 7 AM. He did snore, but he later claimed that he didn’t really sleep. We stopped in Mauston, WI so the contents of the Megabus could shuffle into a crooked line at Wendy’s. I ate a sausage biscuit with egg and cheese that was really, truly great. It was an unexpected delight. Jonathan ate something with chicken and lettuce. We both bought coffee and we were happy. Back on the bus, we discussed the music business at great length. Blah blah publicists, blah blah regional markets, blah CMJ charts. It was nice.

Saturday, July 13, 2013

Southside Desire and Black Diet's Split EP is almost here...

Black Diet drummer David Tullis made this, which was very nice of him, indeed. Pre-orders from the Piñata webstore are still available.

Release party:

July 21st
Palmer's Bar: Palmfest

Full Sunday lineup:
July 21
215 The May North
330 Farmhouse Band
445 Javier and the Innocent Sons
600 Mr. Hyde
715 Southside Desire
830 Black Diet
1000 The Sex Rays
1100 The Union Suits
1215 Mary and the Percolators

$5 admission, $7 for the record, which includes a download.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Southside Desire / Black Diet Split 7" Pre-orders

Pre-orders of the Southside Desire / Black Diet Split 7" EP are now available. When you pre-order the record, you get immediate download of the entire thing. Pretty cool! Here's the songs. The full press release is after the jump. 


Wednesday, May 22, 2013

News: spilling forth like so much candy from a beaten piñata.

Damien sez:

Whoa, it's been too long since I've checked in. Let's get to it.

We changed our webstore. It's now being hosted via Big Cartel, so it has nicer cart features and things like that. If you look at it now, you'll be excited to see a new product...

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Piñata at SXSW: Epilogue

Trevor's on his way home. The road is hard.

Hey There Folks,
Day 1 Post SXSW(Day 8 on the Road)

We realized late last night (Saturday 3/16) that the Budget Rental Car
we were picking up was in a NW Suburb of Austin. Shit. Our hosts Jade,
Benji, and Rita Mae) all work early early Sunday morning, so a ride
wasn't an option. My crew,  JT (Jonathan Tolliver of Black Diet) and
Ginny Herman (Dangerous Man Brewing), must brave the Capitol
Metro-Austin Metro Transit all the way out there. It took us 2
freaking hours.

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Piñata at SXSW: Part 5 (The End)

Trevor wraps up his big week, and finds a delicacy hidden even to locals. Thanks so much for checking in at our blog this week to follow our adventures. Watch for the spring's upcoming split 7" which Jonathan's Black Diet and Trevor's Southside Desire.

Hey There Folks,
Day 5 at SXSW(Day 7 on the Road)

Piñata at SXSW: Part 4

Fatigue begins to set in on Trevor, and we get Jonathan's perspective, Rashomon-style.


Hey there, folks!
Day 4 of SXSW (Day 6 on the road).

Friday, March 15, 2013

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Piñata at SXSW: Part 2

 Trevor E checks in again, with sound guy insight and Midwestern grace.


Hey there, folks!

Here is a rundown of Day 2 in Austin (Day 4 on the Road).

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Piñata at SXSW: Part 1

None of the bands affiliated with Piñata Records had the money, free time, or, I guess, the burning desire to get in the van and head to Austin to fight for attention at South By Southwest this year. However, Trevor E (bassist from Southside Desire) and Jonathan Tolliver (lead vocalist of Black Diet) hitched a ride with Minneapolis stompers The 4onthefloor. Here's Trevor's first dispatch from I-35.


Hey there folks! So here's a recap of the first 3 days of Jonathan and my first trip to SXSW...

Day 1: Departure delayed 3 hours due to a certain party member’s long goodbye in the bathroom at Muddy Waters. This led us to hit the worst blizzard I have ever been in ever. Icy roads, high winds, total white-out conditions, 20 mph on 35S. Terrifying. We set out to meet the 4onthefloor bus in Ames, IA. We made it to Williams, 30 miles north and got a hotel. Beers were had.
Musical Side Note. Listened to Spoon: Gimme Fiction and Haphduzn & Dimitry Killstorm: Whittier Alliance, both for the first time and they were both great albums.
Flavorful Side Note: Always get the salad bar as your side from the little diners. You need the roughage and if you don't get it as your side and you order it later, they'll charge you full salad bar prices. 

Friday, January 18, 2013

Don't Quit Your Day Job - Narco States' Michael McBlane-Meyer

By Damien Tank

One of the great appeals of truly independent music is that the artists are pretty much regular people. They just use their free time to write, rehearse, perform and record music instead of joining bowling teams or taking pottery classes. More often than not, original music doesn't fully finance their lives, so they keep jobs to pay the bills. Let's take some time to celebrate the musician at work.

Minneapolis band Narco States just made a 7" EP full of reverb, organs, and shouting. Obvious musical touchstones include psychedelia of The Stooges, 13th Floor Elevators and The Animals with a strong dose of 70's funk and soul and a psychobilly undercurrent. Their live performances are inspiring, with singer Michael McBlane-Meyer writhing on the stage, dropping his guitar for full-bodied maraca shakes and back again. I sent him a few questions about his other professional life.

Where do you work and what's your job title?
North Memorial Hospital in Minneapolis: Pathology Dept.

What do you actually do there?  
I am a Histotech. I work with human tissue in order to aid Pathologists in the diagnosis of diseases such as Cancer. I do a wide range of things from grossing in tissue, cutting tissue blocks, and staining the tissue elements with a variety of chemicals and dyes. I also sometimes assist in autopsies. Weigh organs, hold the brain bucket...normal every day things like that. 

What are your hours like?  
Usually 4am - 12:30pm. Doesn't everybody get up a 3am?

Have your coworkers heard Narco States? What do they think?They've heard it. It's not really their bag but they are supportive...for a bunch of middle aged women anyway. Although one co-worker told me the music was great except for the singer...she said the singer was terrible. I agreed and agreed we should replace him. I just didn't tell her I was the singer.
How does your job affect your availability to focus on Narco States?  
It makes me a party pooper during the week as I cannot practice late...but otherwise it's a "leave the job at the door" type career so I can concentrate on rocking and rolling. I also get most weekends off and it's easy to take time off for shows...so I can't complain about that at all.

How does your work inspire your music or lyrics? 
 I don't really think it does...If all I sang about was blood and gore or the fragility of life that may be true (although some of those elements might filter in). I think my music and lyrics are an existential expression of being human. I sing about fear, anger, contempt, humor and pop culture reverberations swirling together in my dimly lit brain...and normal every day things like that.

Narco States 7" Release Party 
Nomad World Pub
Friday January 25/ Doors at 9 PM

Mary Allen and the Percolators (12:30)
Narco States (11:30)
Liquor Beats Winter (10:45)
Fret Rattles (10:00)

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Southside Desire's "Fast Hands" Video

Southside Desire vocalist Gloria Iacono directed the video for "Fast Hands" from her band's album Songs to Love and Die To. My favorite part is the puppet domestic squabble captured by an orbiting tracking shot. Very nice work, indeed.

Saturday, January 5, 2013

Narco States! 7" EP!

Narco States have a finished product on their hands! Their debut 7" EP on Piñata is out now in stores and available on their Bandcamp page for digital download. Celebrate its release with them at The Nomad Pub on January 25th with Violent Shifters Mary Allen & The Percolators, Liquor Beats Winter and Fret Rattles! $5/ 9PM/ 21+.