Bring the Noize
Berkeley avant-garde and noise aficionados should note the opening of Beanbenders, a largish (think Kommotion International) space on Shattuck devoted to giving noise a home in the East Bay, or what a press release calls "Absurd, Fantastic, & Exquisite Music for Today's Hard Times and for the Next Cycle to Come." The club, which recently hosted a performance by Bob Ostertag featuring members of Mr. Bungle, is located underneath a comedy traffic school (performances start downstairs when the fun's over upstairs), and is currently maintaining a low (read: no advertising) profile. Call (510) 528-8440 for more info.
In brief: Bay Area darling Barbara Manning recently returned from a cross-country promo tour of community, college, and commercial radio stations, performing at 24 nationwide in just two weeks. The Manning-fronted S.F. Seals release Truth Walks in Sleepy Shadows on Matador later this month. ... Other local releases include Undercover S.K.A.'s self-titled 2-toned madness on Solo Records; Dora Flood's 1301 e.p. on American Standard Recordings; the almighty Wynona Riders' J.D. Salinger on Lookout!; Hunters Point rappers Under Da Influence's Dogday debut; Souls of Mischief's much-anticipated sophomore joint on Jive; and Brian Jonestown Massacre's incredibly strange Methodrone on Bomp! ... Hillbilly punkers Dieselhed played with Stone Fox in Portland last week at the fledgling North by Northwest Music Convention. The band will release a new disc, tentatively titled Tales of a Brown Dragon, on Amarillo in mid-October, featuring live favorites like "Wedding Song," "John the Butcher Boy," and "Snowblind." ... Rumor has it that locals Pee are enjoying something of a major-label bidding war, having been wined-and-dined in Los Angeles a couple weeks ago. ... Finally, Lookout! and Slash Records are talking about a joint re-release of It's a Girl, the late-'80s punk-pop gem from San Francisco's defunct Sweet Baby.
By Seana Baruth