Posts Tagged ‘Nebraska’

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Bright Eyes are the Omaha, Nebraska based band consisting of Conor Oberst, Mike Mogis, and Nathaniel Walcott.

Bright Eyes have returned with new song “One and Done,” the third track released from their upcoming new album, following the previously shared “Forced Convalescence” and “Persona Non Grata.”

“One and Done” is built with some lovely string arrangements that give reminds a bit of some of The Last Shadow Puppets earlier work, just with a more introspective and vulnerable folk performance from Obsert as well as some welcome horns.

It’s another wonderful new track from the band who are back in fine form. We need that album as soon as possible.


Released May 27th, 2020

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“…..all the good ones in the world they keep dropping dead, everybody’s got a bullet flying at their head……” Looking forward to a new album sometime in 2019??


“No One Changes” 
Conor Oberst- piano and vocal
“The Rockaways” 
Conor Oberst- guitar and vocal
Nathaniel Walcott- keyboard
Released November 7th, 2018

It’s just been announced that Conor Oberst is working with the Felice Brothers band again on a new (sort of) album. Salutations is going to be 7 new tracks, plus all the songs from Ruminations done with a full band instead of solo. Earlier they released the first new track, “Napalm,” as well as their version of  “A Little Uncanny.”

“Napalm” is, in my opinion, one of the most electrifying track’s Oberst has released since “Roosevelt Room” appeared on Outer South. There’s a little twang in the vocals on some lyrics, and since Ian Felice isn’t focused on singing he’s free to go wild on lead guitar. Salutations also features Oberst’s Monsters Of Folk bandmate Jim James and drummer Jim Keltner.

“Napalm” by Conor Oberst and The Felice Brothers

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Over the course of the past six years, Omaha, NB musician David Nance has released three full-length albums for labels Grapefruit and Ba Da Bing Records, a 7-inch, numerous cassettes, CDRs and unlicensed “cover albums”. His latest full-length is credited to the David Nance Group and features Nance alongside his recent hot-shit live band of fellow Omaha musicians. “Peaced and Slightly Pulverized’s” sounds are alternatingly tender and brusque.

The anthemic Poison with its fuzzed-out guitar riff that leans into a Crazy-Horsian guitar maelstrom and white-hot solo, to Ham Sandwich; a blisteringly frantic rant about a lunchtime torment – uncomfortable in its directness. Side one closes with the epic seven and a half minute Amethyst; an emotional odyssey with Nance and Schroeder strangling their guitars into a twin-guitar, barbed-wire duel. The album’s centerpiece is In Her Kingdom, an emotive ballad that fades into view with a plaintive guitar strum that ebbs and flows with a ris ing tide of swelling guitars, it’s riffs gilding the melody and adding flecks of gold to Nance’s tale of poverty and grace. The album closes with Prophet’s Profit’s biting commentary on false idolatry utilizing the group’s not-so-secret weaponry of Nance and Schroeder’s six-string simpatico to bring the listener home.


Bruce Springsteen scored his first major pop chart hit in 1980 with “Hungry Heart.” Coming off that, it would have been reasonable to expect The Boss to strike while the iron was hot and write more ear candy so that his nationwide commercial success might match his critical acclaim and his live reputation. But Springsteen always had the long game in mind even as a young man, releasing an album in 1982 called Nebraska that was almost defiantly anti-radio. It came down to the notion that the stories on that record, like the clash between duty and family at the heart of “Highway Patrolman,” were the ones he needed to tell to properly continue his career-long conversation with his fans.

In a 1998 interview with Double Take magazine, Springsteen explained where his head was at when he wrote and recorded the songs that would become Nebraska. “I think I’d come out of a period of my own writing where I’d been writing big, sometimes operatic, and occasionally rhetorical things,” he said. “I was interested in finding another way to write about those subjects, about people, another way to address what was going on around me and in the country – a more scaled-down, more personal, more restrained way of getting some of my ideas across.”

In terms of “Highway Patrolman,” that restraint is evident in the way that Springsteen doesn’t feel the need to fill in every little detail or burden the song with exposition. His narrator, police officer Joe Roberts, is clearly a man of few words, yet what’s roiling inside of him can be detected in Springsteen’s world-weary delivery. His basic problem: He is sworn to uphold the law in his little Michigan town of Perrineville, but, as he sums it up, “I got a brother named Franky and Franky ain’t no good.”

He then details how the scenario has played itself out over the years: Franky causes trouble, and Joe uses his position to sweep those problems under the rug. “But when it’s your brother sometimes you look the other way,” Springsteen sings, and it’s immediately clear where this stance of willful ignorance will lead. But Joe defends himself by telling nostalgic stories of happier times filled with drinking and singing; “Nothing feels better than blood on blood,” he explains. He defends his actions by falling back on family ties: “Man turns his back on his family well he just ain’t no good.”

Springsteen takes a verse to explain how the brothers came to be in this position, which is important because the themes of poverty and people forced into suffocating circumstances run rampant throughout Nebraska. Joe tells how he attempted to farm until he could no longer make ends meet. Meanwhile Frankie spends time in the Army at a time when the Vietnam War was ramping up, so we can only assume that his own personal problems were exacerbated by his stint in the conflict.

It all leads to the final verse, when Franky finally does the kind of damage that can’t be ignored. Joe Roberts hustles out to his vehicle and starts speeding through the streets in search of his brother. The juxtaposition in this section is fascinating, as the suspenseful, high-speed pursuit is contrasted by the staggering pace of the song. We are led to believe that Joe might finally confront his wayward brother, but Springsteen gives us a final twist: “Well I chased him through them county roads/ Till a sign said Canadian border five miles from here/ I pulled over to the side of the highway and watched his taillights disappear.”

The ambivalence of this ending is truly haunting. Franky might be getting away for now, but it seems a given that he is headed for a bad end without his brother around to clean up his messes. And for all of his good intentions, Joe is now left to wonder if he enabled Franky with his actions. “Highway Patrolman” is about impossible choices, a story song that teaches no lessons and leaves no morals. It’s also proof that in songwriting, less can be more, especially when you’ve got a master like Bruce Springsteen deciding what to include and what the listener can figure out for themselves.

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Hailing from Southeast Nebraska, Bartels and his band of brothers, The Stoney Lonesomes are making honest, hard hitting, Americana Rock that is not easily forgotten.

Evan Bartels is a lot of things, but above all else he is a great story teller. He has dedicated his life to living in a way that encompasses all facets of the human experience and capturing those feelings and emotions in his songwriting. The words that you can’t find when you wish only to know someone has felt what you are feeling… that’s what is put into his songs and they grab you and resonate in your bones. 


I don’t know what does but. Bartels is the next generation of gruff, emotional rock songwriters. I’ll tell you this it opens with a nice acoustic part, but you sure as shit better stay for the 1:20 mark and hear that breakdown. If you click away from the song after that, we aren’t even friends. Get the hell out of here with this song, man. I don’t even know what to say about it anymore it’s just so good.

You can listen to ‘Tattoo’ and the rest of Evan Bartels‘ full length album “The Devil, God & Me


Band Members
Evan Bartels, Logan Bartels, Jake Brandt, Bryan Keeling

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Co-fronted by the ethereal Sara Bertuldo and the whispered baritone of Mathew Carroll, See Through Dresses work bits of Cocteau Twins, The Cure, and other reverby ’80s bands into their new album “Horse of the Other World”.  Its instant, urgent, and bursting at the seams with sentimental angst, “Lucy’s Arm” is a brilliant next-step…a sonic explosion of guts and glory that hits like a hammer.  Sara Bertuldo’s vocals absolutely soar, but the heavy bass line and looping guitars keep her tethered. The track sounds like an authority figure hit with a glitter bomb, a moment of levity for a person who can’t quite fully give in to it and divorce themselves from the world. 


“Violet,” the first single from See Through Dresses’ upcoming sophomore album, comes out swinging with a towering, shimmering riff that threads itself throughout the song. Their new album, Horse Of The Other World, alludes to their shoegazier past, but most of the songs have a vibrancy and urgency that’s difficult to walk back from. “Violet” in particular is an absolute monster of a track.

Black Sabbath kicked off their final world tour last night in Omaha, Neb. with a 14-song set largely dedicated to their most popular songs. You can see the full setlist below.

The founding members Ozzy Osbourne, Tony Iommi and Geezer Butler were again joined by Tommy Clufetos, who took over for original drummer Bill Ward on Sabbath’s 2012-2014 reunion tour following a still-acrimonious split.

In Omaha, the quintessential heavy metal band kicked off its farewell tour — dubbed “The End” — and said this really is the final hurrah. Nearly 50 years after first forming (and 34 years to the day after Osbourne bit the head off of a bat), Black Sabbath took the stage with thundering versions of “Paranoid,” “War Pigs,” “Iron Man” and the eponymous “Black Sabbath.”

Even though it wasn’t a perfect show, it was tough to say goodbye. Black Sabbath basically invented heavy metal. Back then, they were just four guys in Birmingham. Fast forward 50 years and their guitar tones, howling occult lyrics, and slamming drumbeats are standard metal stuff, and those same guys stood in front of nearly 13,000 screaming fans. Wednesday’s show was just shy of a sellout, and people packed to the rafters to watch the band kick off its final jaunt with a no-nonsense 90-minute set. The thousands — heavily male, dressed in black and often heavily tattooed — heard the first ominous notes of “Black Sabbath” and jumped to their feet to hear the band run through its classics.

Backed by a screen full of psychedelic video streams and flanked by six flaming pyres, frontman Ozzy Osbourne, bassist Geezer Butler and guitarist Tony Iommi dressed all in black for the occasion. (They were joined by drummer Tommy Clufetos, who has sat in for original drummer Bill Ward for several years.)

Iommi was pure thundering bliss on guitar. Playing some battered-up, well-used Gibson SGs, the legendary picker had a thick tone that was often menacing, sometimes forceful and always bursting with lightning. Butler availed himself well, especially on the band’s more recognizable basslines such as “War Pigs.” And Culfetos beat the drums like he hated them. Then there was the Ozzman.

Osbourne’s voice wasn’t great. It wasn’t awful, really. It simply wasn’t very good. On Wednesday, he was sometimes flat. He was sometimes pitchy, occasionally off-key. He almost never hit the notes he was looking for.

Osbourne did better on less vocally demanding songs such as “Dirty Women” and “Black Sabbath.”

It was the first show of the tour, so maybe his voice will warm up. Maybe they’re still working out the sound in his monitors. Maybe it’s just that he’s 67 years old.

It’s not clear what the cause was, but Sabbath also shuffled around its original setlist and skipped three songs. After Osbourne and Iommi consulted on stage, “Children of the Grave” was moved from the end of the setlist. They then skipped “God is Dead,” Under the Sun” and “After Forever” and finished the show with “Dirty Women” and “Paranoid.” The show came in 30 minutes under it’s originally scheduled runtime. (Read the show’s setlist below.) But nothing could stop fans from loving him.

They screamed every word to “Snowblind,” and danced around for “Children of the Grave.”

When the chugging chords of “Paranoid” signaled the end of the show, the arena was brought to its feet while purple confetti rained from above. When the show ended, the band took its bow and the house lights came up, many people refused to leave their seats. It was too hard to admit it was over. “This is the beginning of the end for us and I just wanted to say thank you for all of your support all these years,” Osbourne said at the end. “Thank you. Goodnight. God bless you all.”

As hinted at on an promotional video highlighting the band’s rehearsal sessions for The End tour, 1970’s slow-burning, bass-heavy “Hand of Doom” was performed for the first time in almost 40 years, alongside expected classics such as opener “Black Sabbath,” “War Pigs” and “Children of the Grave.

Unlike Black Sabbath’s last tour, nothing from their most recent album 13 was performed at last night’s show. Nor were any songs from The End, a new CD featuring four unreleased studio tracks from the 13 sessions and four live performances. This CD will only be sold at shows on this tour.

The End tour continues tomorrow night in Chicago, Ill., and is currently scheduled to conclude Sept. 21st in Phoenix, Ariz. You can get all of Black Sabbath’s tour dates at the band’s official site.

Black Sabbath Setlist: 1/20/16 Omaha, Neb.

01. “Black Sabbath”
02. “Fairies Wear Boots”
03. “Tomorrow’s Dream”
04. “Into The Void”
05. “Snowblind”
06. “War Pigs”
07. “Behind The Wall Of Sleep”
08. “N.I.B.”
09. “Hand Of Doom”
10. “Rat Salad”
11. “Iron Man”
12. “Children Of The Grave”
13. “Dirty Women”
14. “Paranoid”


From the opening bars of “In Folds,” it sounds like Icky Blossoms are going for one of the many chase scenes in a John Carpenter film. Once the track opens up, it’s a whole new ballgame; synth pop driven by female vocals with hints of yearning and darkness bring to mind the epic scope of Anthony Gonzalez’s work.
This video came with the disclaimer of *NOT FOR THE FAINT OF HEART, and it lives up to the warning. The clip opens with singer/keyboardist Sarah Bohling being kidnapped by thugs and brought against her will to a space where her bandmates are already bound and bruised. It’s already scarier than that dumb-ass internet horror movie everyone keeps going to the theaters to see.

The video is totally on some weird John Carpenter shit though. Opening with a kidnapping, vocalist Sarah Bohling faces her kidnappers and is forced to play a particularly “killer” show complete with blood spatter everywhere. After that, things get very Buffalo Bill ala Silence of the Lambs and then take a total left turn. It’s weird enough to watch more than once and thankfully the track lends itself to hella repeats.
Order Icky Blossoms’s new LP “Mask” via Saddle Creek Records, due on May 12th. The band took the above pre-tour photo recently, so catch them at a gig near you soon.


Grass, Branch & Bone is an evocative name for an album, and Simon Joyner’s “You Got Under My Skin” lives up to the album title’s gritty, rootsy insinuations. In the ’90s, Joyner was a contemporary of Midwest lo-fi folk-rock greats like Will Oldham and Bill Callahan, and his music shares traits with both of those artists. “You Got Under My Skin” is plainspoken and graceful, yet both Joyner’s weathered tenor and the barebones arrangement sound as parched and cracked as the pages of an old book. He’s a favorite of fellow Omaha native Conor Oberst, who wrote Joyner’s official bio, and you can definitely hear how Joyner’s quirky, matter-of-fact delivery affected Oberst’s songwriting. Gillian Welch and the Black Swans’ Jerry DeCicca are also big fans. Grass, Branch & Bone is coming out on Woodsist Records, and that makes sense too; like Woods, he plays American roots music at a charmingly off-kilter angle.