This was supposed to run over at Des Moines Is Not Boring today, but I sort of failed to use my email properly. So, I am going to run this here instead. Be sure to head over to Des Moines Is Not Boring and read all of the great work on the site. Click the link or the banner
The whole reason I started booking bands in the first place was so I could get Awesome Car Funmaker a regular Des Moines gig. For those unaware, and unfortunately that would be just a whole lot of you, Awesome Car Funmaker was a band from Madison, Wisconsin who played a loud set with a lot of synth and punk rock snarl. They wore ties and had choreography. Sometimes there was a keytar. They were the first band I ever saw cover Britney Spears’ “Toxic”. They were also maybe the best band I have ever seen. It was so much fun to watch their controlled chaos and join in on their sing-a-longs about tiger pirates, zmobies and aliens.
A group of us even traveled around to see them. One time we saw them open a show in Minneapolis. Their set was so incredible that the crowd chanted for an encore. Again, they were the opener. They looked at each other and shrugged and went to play one more song. The sound guy ran from his booth and actually ripped their cords out so they couldn’t play. I also saw them play a show with a band that had a wizard for a lead guitarist. I’m not using that as an adjective; he was an actual wizard.
When I finally got a space to book bands, they were the first ones I contacted. Unfortunately, they had decided to call it quits. Seems that playing amazing, Earth changing, revolutionary shows wasn’t enough to maintain their lifestyle of, you know, eating and paying rent.
Bands break up all the time. It is unfortunate fact of life, especially to someone who follows the local scene. You hear a band you really like; maybe you go to a few shows and even buy a t-shirt and then, suddenly they’re gone. It happens a lot. Kids who start bands become adults with mortgages and children and they get real jobs and can’t play in bands anymore. Sometimes they get to have send-offs, sometimes they just go away.
It is because of Awesome Car Funmaker that I go to so many shows and listen to so many bands. You don’t just have to listen to the biggest bands in the universe all the time, sometimes you can find a band you love close to home. You go to shows and be a part of something small, but the art is still incredible and emotional and the attachment is that much more special.
There is a band from Iowa City that has been around for a few years by the name of Datagun. They are an awesome three piece noise-pop band with an incredibly diverse and unique sound. It sometimes dances between house beats and r&b, and sometimes it is just awesome noise. Vocally, they are a little monotone when needed, a little thrashy, sometimes a baritone reminiscent of The National. The lyrics on occasion are belted at just the right note and sometimes aren‘t, but it still feels right.
Datagun is incredible, but you will never get the chance to truly love them, because after this weekend they will be gone. They will be another band subject to the occasional reunion gig and reminiscing of the people who truly knew them. This is why going to shows and being a part of the scene is so important. Sure, you are supporting artists who will hopefully continue to make art, but mostly you are committing a part of yourself to this. Even as a fan, the smallest of shows has a chance to inspire you and change you and shape you into a person you maybe didn’t know you were, or a person you didn’t know you could be.
There is one last chance to catch Datagun (see below) and you should. And you should love them and get attached to them and listen to them, because even if they aren’t making new music, they still have one last opportunity to play a role in your life. Or at the very least, you should go because they’re awesome, it’s a great show and you will have a good time.
Try Not To Miss Shows – 6/28 – July 4
Datagun w/ Love Songs For Lonely Monsters and Olsen Twinns – Vaudeville Mews June 29 930pm
So here is the show. Go to it. Love it. It will be amazing.
Superchief w/ Fatal Addiction, The Maw and Kingmoon Razor – Wooly’s June 29 9pm
Superchief are awesome and loud. Do you like loud rock and roll? Don’t miss this one.
Still Flyin’ w/ Mantis Pincers and Pink Kodiak – Vaudeville Mews June 30 930pm
Hey, it’s the Mantis Pincers, another band you should catch while you still have the chance. Oh, and Pink Kodiak, who I did not forget.
Bright Giant w/ Love Songs For Lonely Monsters and The Olympics – Gas Lamp June 30 8pm
A chance to see a couple of 80/35 bands before the festival.
Gentleman Savage, Unknown Component, Diamonds For Eyes, Rebel Creek – Wooly’s June 30 9pm
A free show featuring four awesome acts.