photo manipulation & text by nacrowe
what a great concept.
A.V. UNDERCOVER was a CURATED LIVE PERFORMANCE web series produced by THE ONION entertainment offshoot THE A.V. CLUB that ran for seven seasons and had 310 episodes from 2010-2017. at the heart of it was the premise of a listener-derived list of songs that participating BANDS and ARTISTS would choose from, the catch being that ARTISTS performing further in the season had less choice over the material and made for some truly UNLIKELY covers.
and therein lies this LIVE MUSIC series REMARKABLE lasting cultural pull. the idea of GWAR covering the PET SHOP BOYS' "WEST END GIRLS," SEBADOH covering RUSH's "LIMELIGHT" or COHEED AND CAMBRIA covering THE SMITHS' "A RUSH AND A PUSH AND THE LAND IS OURS" is something i am absolutely here for. i am glad to live in a universe where this stuff exists. past participants include CHARLI XCX, THE GET-UP KIDS, DEERHOOF, NADA SURF, THE COATHANGERS, RISE AGAINST, TED LEO AND THE PHARMACISTS, DUM DUM GIRLS, COURTNEY BARNETT, THE POLYPHONIC SPREE, AGAINST ME!, KURT VILE, LE BUTCHERETTES, WRYE OAK and GROUPLOVE covering everyone from BIG STAR, THE GO-GOs, BLUR, NEW ORDER and NIRVANA to KATE BUSH, THE BREEDERS, ANDREW W.K., NINE INCH NAILS, NEIL YOUNG, THE CLASH, ADAM ANT, TEARS FOR FEARS, MILEY CYRUS and even THE BACKSTREET BOYS among countless others.
honestly, what is there not to love. definitely worth checking out.
photo manipulation & text by nacrowe
much like the ICONS and THE COLLECTION series covered before, RIFF LORDS is another string of YOUTUBE videos promoted by GIBSON GUITARS under the GIBSON TV moniker that seeks to reestablish the brands bonafides with the guitar-playing public via celebrity musician endorsements after the disastrous "play authentic" campaign of 2019.
the hook regarding RIFF LORDS is that these famous guitarists are allotted an extended-period to not only go over their most notable riffs, but the PHILOSOPHY, THEORY and TECHNIQUE behind their composition. noteworthy participants include that of BUZZ OSBOURNE (MELVINS), NICK HEXUM (311), JADE PUGET (AFI), LER LALONDE (PRIMUS) and CLAUDIO SANCHEZ (COHEED & CAMBRIA). this sort of territory has been mined for years by the likes publications like GUITAR WORLD and PREMIER GUITAR (not to mention online vendors like REVERB and SWEETWATER) for years, but the extended time and lack of an annoying an unnecessary interloctur makes this series of videos more immediate and engaging.
i play guitar so this hits me right in the sweet spot of seeing some of my favorite artists talk at length about their playing. now if they could only get DAVE NAVARRO or JOHNNY MARR... here's hoping.
photo manipulation by nacrowe
TWO MINUTES TO LATE NIGHT (clever IRON MAIDEN reference) was originally an all-METAL parody talk show hosted by GWARSENIO HALL (with MUTOID MAN as the house band!) and filmed at SAINT VITUS BAR in BROOKLYN. however, the show has really come into its own during the past 6 months of this god-awful pandemic era since they began remote producing these really well-mixed BEDROOM COVER videos of various members of the METAL extended family (SLUDGE, DEATH, THRASH, PROG and others), and even some INDIE ROCK distant cousins, covering classic songs by TOM PETTY & THE HEARTBREAKERS, RUSH, WHITE ZOMBIE, AC/DC, GUNS N ROSES, THE REPLACEMENTS & OZZY among others.
it seems safe to say that this sort of thing would never happen under regular conditions as most of these musicians would be buys with conflicting touring/recording schedules. that being said, the BEDROOM COVER lineups themselves are absolutely insane including members of MASTODON, CONVERGE, TOOL, PRIMUS, DILLINGER ESCAPE PLAN, HIGH ON FIRE, CAVE IN, POISON THE WELL, UNEARTH, VOLUMES, CLUTCH, HAVOK, FUCKED AND BOUND, POTION, MUTOID MAN, VIO-LENCE and HATEBREED as well as decidedly less METAL-focused acts like TED LEO, PIEBALD, CHELSEA WOLFE, SLEIGH BELLS, MY CHEMICAL ROMANCE, RISE AGAINST, COHEED & CAMBRIA and MAX WEINBERG of the BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN's E-STREET BAND (and former CONAN O'BRIEN cohost!).
what is super cool is that a recent episode had LILY MASTRODIMOS of JERSEY CITY INDIE ROCK band LONG NECK singing backup vocals on a cover of THE REPLACEMENTS "KIDS DON'T FOLLOW." we here at DEER GOD were lucky enough to record LONG NECK as part of our live performance series OFF THE M at TRANS PECOS in QUEENS not that long ago (performance linked HERE). its so cool to see her collaborating with members of RISE AGAINST and CONVERGE. congrats.
i'm sure this series will continue on so definitely keep a look out for it. way more interesting and entertaining then what passes for LATE NIGHT television these days.