Dear recent Orlando transplant:

Ok, so you just moved to Orlando from New York / Philly / Chicago / San Francisco / et al. You feel lost, uprooted, misplaced -- you're starting to think Orlando might suck. Eager to find some nightlife in this town, you go to Lattitudes on Church Street, Slingapour's on Wall Street and that mega-club on Orange Avenue owned by one of those Backstreet Boys (Orlando's finest celebrities). Maybe you even think International Drive, Citywalk or Downtown Disney is where everyone hangs out in this town. Now you really think Orlando sucks.

Well, you're wrong. There is more to this city than theme park "nightlife" and crappy clubs with guys wearing shiny shirts, but you have to know where to look. Instead of complaining about how lame Orlando is compared to your city of origin, why not get out there and support your new scene -- it's a lot better than you think! After all, you moved here for a reason, right? (I'm guessing to escape the cold weather.) So you can do one of two things: either 1) move back to the city you think is sooooo much more awesome or 2) quit bitchin', check the events below and DON'T SLEEP on the shit that is happening!

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Toxic Avenger and Franki Chan in Orlando

Melvin was a 90lb. weakling until nuclear waste transformed him into... The Toxic Avenger!!! Oh wait, wrong one.

Toxic Avenger Orlando
The French are completely going off, as usual, and luckily the nice Saturday Thursday folks are making sure Orlando doesn't miss out by bringing the Toxic Avenger to our fair city. Anyone who classifies his music as "Emotronic / Christian Rap / Thrash" must know what he's doing. The mysterious masked man will be in effect this Thursday at Firestone along with Mr. IHEARTCOMIX himself, Franki Chan.

Check out the Christian Rap influence in his remixes:

John Bourke - What is Love (The Toxic Avenger Remix).mp3

Le Castle Vania - Tigertron (Toxic Avenger Remix).mp3

Dragonette - Take It Like A Man (The Toxic Avenger Remix).mp3

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

MSTRKFT is back in Orlando tomorrow night!

Finally!!! Saturday Thursday and Firestone are bringing back MSTRKRFT, one of the first acts to play when the night started over a year ago. It's safe to say that this was the party of 2006 and there's no doubt it will top the 2007 list as well, especially since they will be rockin' the main room instead of the loft this time.

Here is a video I took last year (of awesome quality I might add!) during the climax of their track Neon Nights. Check out the killing on the dancefloor.

You want more? Okay.

Here is my favorite remix they did for Acid Jacks:
Acid Jacks - Awake Since 78 (MSTRKRFT remix).mp3

Another awesome remix of Goose:
Goose - Bring It On (MSTRKRFT JFK Remix).mp3

And a mix of Revl9n
Revl9n - Someone Like You (MSTRKRFT sweat remix).mp3

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Tonight - DJ Krush in Orlando

The Japanese mastermind will be at Phat-N-Jazzy tonight -- don't miss out!

DJ Krush Orlando Event

Monday, October 15, 2007

There is no future in the past -- Sorry, Mark Farina!

I never thought I would see the day when I wasn't excited about Mark Farina playing in Orlando; he was one of the first DJs I ever fell in love with almost 10 years ago and his influence strongly shaped my musical taste. I spent the entire week leading up to Farina's performance at Firestone this past Saturday contemplating why I did not feel more enthusiastic. Is it me? Has my current obsession with heavy electro music tainted my opinion? Have I changed so much that I can't appreciate what once meant so much to me? After much deliberation on the subject, I decided the answer was no, proven by a nostalgic look back at his catalog.

Mark Farina Orlando

As you can see from the photo above, the decline started with Connect: no one wanted to like this mix more than I did, but there was no denying how boring it was. The lameness continued through the disastrous Air Farina, his first stab at producing tracks (zzzzzz), the Live at Om double CD with Derrick Carter (both booorrrriiinnngggg), Mushroom Jazz Vol. 3 and Vol. 5 (although I loved Vol. 4, which almost crushes my whole line of reasoning), and the House of Om release he is currently whoring promoting on his Myspace. I listened to the "exclusive podcast mix" from his page recently just to compare how his style had evolved throughout the years -- turns out it hasn't. The first song he plays is his own remix of Iz and Diz's Love It Dub from 2002 that echoes memories from that year's Winter Music Conference.

Most of the people who showed up to see Mark Farina were only there for his brand name; a name they have heard a million times, a name that brings a certain level of comfort. Nevertheless, they were bored by his music and you could see it in their eyes: the idea of seeing "Mark Farina" far surpassed seeing him in real life because the memory of what he used to be exceeds anything he will do in the future. Observe the following photos (ignore the obvious photo quality differences when comparing):

Mark Farina Orlando Event

Not bored.
Boys Noize Orlando Event
Photo by Kevin Collier, KColl Designs

Same club, same night of the week, two very different audiences. One is colorless and the other is vibrant; one looks back as the other looks ahead. Which crowd would you rather be in?

As I stood in the upstairs loft at Firestone and listened to the future music being played by Mot and Andrew Spear, I gazed down to the dance floor through the glass windows and observed Mark Farina performing for his crowd. They will always be stuck in the year 1999 and will never evolve to become anything more; it is the comfort zone where he and his fans wish to stay. I felt as though I was watching my past flash before my eyes: I saw my 19 year-old self dancing uncontrollably in a sea of people, experiencing things she was only naive enough to do at the time. While I appreciate these moments of reflection, I will not cling to them for dear life. Dance music is not about clutching the one fiber of greatness you loved "back in the day when things were cool." It continues to be about relentlessly forging ahead and constantly discovering whatever is new. Anyone who doesn't keep up will inevitably get left in the dust to become the old guy in the club who complains about how "the scene just isn't what it used to be." No one likes that guy.

Ironically, my contemplative flashback was set to the Justice remix of ZZT's Lower State of Consciousness -- a song that epitomizes new-meets-old, crazy-meets-awesome, future-meets-past rave music -- which seemed all too fitting in the moment. And I found my current 28 year-old self grateful for the ability to progress into the unknown (yet ever-exciting) future of music, without dwelling in those "good old club days" forever.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Tonight - Small Talk Art Show and Mega Vs Vega afterparty

I am thoroughly convinced that pretty much everyone in Orlando will be at the Small Talk art show tonight. I guess that's what happens when you have a bunch of local artists create one small piece to feature in a group show. Artists displaying tonight include Bask, Tes One, Andrew Spear, Charles Marklin, Swamburger and a bazillion more. Props to Dustin Orlando for putting it all together.

Small Talk Art Show Orlando

And don't miss the afterparty, when (Neil) Mega brings his own blend of hip hop, mashups and B-More craziness straight from the 'Burg to Orlando.
Mega vs Vega Orlando
Ohhhhhhhhh, Burg.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Orlando Pizza and Beer Lovers Unite! Sunday, October 14th

Orlando Beer Bomb Bus Tour
The combination of pizza and beer can be compared to David Lee Roth and Eddie Van Halen: sure, each is decent on its own, but you just can't beat them together. This Sunday, October 14th, marks the next Beer Bomb Bus Tour which will be paying homage to this dynamic duo (the pizza/beer combo, not Diamond Dave and the Red Rocker). The beer of choice is the seasonal Shipyard Pumkinhead Ale, and three local pizza joints have been challenged to create a unique pie that will suitably compliment the specialty brew. The Shipyard bus departs from Redlight Redlight at 4:30 and will transport everyone to Rossi's Pizzeria on OBT, Mellow Mushroom in Winter Park and finally Lazy Moon by UCF -- all spots known for their mouth-watering pizza and outstanding assortment of beer. Tickets for the tour are only $35, including one slice and one Pumpkinhead per stop, and can be purchased at Redlight Redlight.

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Mistadobalina is a jackass

Del tha Funky Homosapien will be killing The Social tonight, so if you're a fan of hip hop's golden era, you don't want to miss it.
Orlando Event Del tha Funky Homosapien
I saw Dr. Bombay when he played here in 2004 and it was dope! If that show is any indication of what tonight will be like, the sold out crowd will be full of white guys that go to Full Sail and know every single word to every song.

Joining him tonight are Devin the Dude, Bukue One, and Serendipity Project.

Sheena Easton does Epcot

The main purpose of this blog is to showcase the side of Orlando that ISN'T related to theme parks; however, every now and then, they are unavoidable. Like, for example, when you find out Sheena Easton is playing at Epcot as part of the cleverly-named "Eat to the Beat" concert series. Disney concerts automatically equal FREE concerts, thanks to the fact that my mom has worked there since the dawn of time, so I scored some passes and we were off.

Disney sucked as much as it usually does -- hot, crowded, and kids kids kids -- but luckily we were only there for the show. Sheena opened with "Strut," a favorite song of mine that evokes memories of being eight years old and prancing around my room in a matching leg warmer/headband ensemble. The song could have been quite a crowd pleaser if she had been performing for an audience who actually cared; instead she was playing to a group of drained adults looking for any excuse to sit down for 40 minutes. "Strut" was followed by an upbeat tune that I vaguely recognized and a slow, drawn-out ballad I had never heard before; the end of which prompted a middle-aged gentleman to cheerfully jump to his feet and frantically applaud. He was either the biggest Sheena Easton fan on the planet or just extremely glad the song was finally over.

Sheena Easton Orlando event
The way she sashayed around the stage and made bad jokes reminded me of a cheesy Vegas act, which was confirmed when she announced that's where the group had been playing for the past few years. Nevertheless, her voice is still amazing and she looks damn good for pushing 50. She was joined by her back up singer for "We've Got Tonight," the Bob Seger original she remade with Kenny Rogers. Once I realized the show included popular duets, I desperately hoped the next song would be "U Got the Look" but, alas, it never came (cue the shot of Prince in his distant castle screaming "Forget it, Sheena! No song of mine shall ever be played at a place unworthy as Disney World! Mwuahahahaha"). By this point, the Standing Ovation Guy was in full effect after every song although his trend had not caught on with anyone else in the audience; quite a commitment but somehow he managed. If only we could all demonstrate such discipline.

True to her Vegas style, she came into the audience during "Telefone," a song that is a blatant rip off of "Gloria" from Flashdance. She also pulled an overly eager (and a tad flamboyant) audience member onto the stage, making all of his dreams come true. He was much more excited about the idea of being on stage with Sheena Easton and spent the majority of the experience posing for his friend's photos. He was already envisioning the witty story he'll tell at cocktail parties for years to come: "There I was, right next to her, I just couldn't believe it! Oh, she was just so fabulous! And her hunky bodyguard that pulled me off stage! He can guard my body any day!" The crowd found his over-exaggerations quite comical, and I expect they will return home and also retell the tale: "Oh, Jim, you'll never believe it - we saw this Shelia E. concert at Epcot, and right in the middle, she pulled a gay onto the stage. It was so cute! Do you believe it, a gay on stage at Disney World???" And after the flamboyant antics had ensued and the song reached its conclusion, the Standing Ovation Guy dramatically arose from his seat and started to clap. Go figure.

The biggest crowd-pleasing song was, as expected, "Morning Train" and the catchy, bubble gum tune caused everyone to bop along gleefully -- particularly appropriate in a Disney setting. For me, this song is the epitome of what Andrew Spear refers to as "Driving in the car with mom music" and I have vivid memories of her and me singing the un-feministic lyrics at the top of our lungs. When I first told her why I wanted Disney tickets over the phone, she excitedly exclaimed, "Oh! Our old song!" followed by the familiar chorus of "My baby takes the mornin' train, He works from 9 to 5 and then..." For some reason, this memory never gets old to either of us.

Before Sheena began her last song, she left everyone with a warm, fuzzy Disney ending: "With all that's going on in the world, who here cannot look around on this beautiful day here at Disney World, and just take a deep breath and say... 'Life is good!'?" Seeing as I had watched a documentary about World War II earlier in the day, I had to agree that anyone sitting in that amphitheater had nothing major to complain about. As she ended her show by belting out her James Bond hit, "For Your Eyes Only," I thought the Standing Ovation Guy's head might explode. In his mind, the show really had been for his eyes only. It was finally his moment to shine -- and shine he did. Shine he did.

I am so going back to see Exposé at the end of the month.

Monday, October 8, 2007

Case of the Mondays

It looks like the Dead Cruiser will not be performing in Orlando tonight. Boooo!!!

Kavinsky canceled in Orlando

From the Myspace bulletin:

In case you haven't heard the news, Kavinsky is stuck on the US/Mexico border and has missed his connecting flight to Orlando. We are working on rescheduling the performance ... Ticketholders can request a full refund online at or choose to hold on to them for the rescheduled performance.

Judging by the rest of his tour dates, unless they reschedule him in November, he ain't coming back.


Thursday, October 4, 2007

Them Jeans -- the second time around*

According to Shalamar, the second time around is supposedly better than the first. Hopefully that's true in Orlando tonight when Them Jeans returns to Saturday Thursday*, this time joined by Desert Eagles. Although I missed him the first time, I heard good things about his set and anyone who puts out a remix of The Final Countdown by Europe gets a gold star in my book of awesomeness (even if I prefer the original to the edit). Fuck yeah:

Europe - The Final Countdown (Antimc/Them Jeans remix).mp3

I also came across a pretty decent remix he did of Yelle, aka the French doppelganger of Uffie - a comparison I'm sure they both hate. The buzz on the interwebs is that Yelle's lyrics are even more horrible than Uffie's, though I'm not sure how that is possible, and her most well-known track, Je Veux Te Voir, is ripping off the lyrics in Short Dick Man.

Really??? But it sounds so dope, especially the TEPR mix that Guns'n'Bombs plays on their Mixtape #2 mix. I wonder if Uffie's dumb lyrics about shining like a princess in the middle of thugs sound amazing to people who don't speak English - that would explain a lot.

Oops, I got off topic! Here is the Them Jeans edit of Ce Jue (great, what the hell does that stand for???) from Palms Out Sounds:

Yelle - Ce Jue (Them Jeans edit).mp3

And finally, in honor of the upcoming Kavinsky show at BackBooth on Monday night and to further support the belief that Them Jeans must have a good sense of humor, I will leave you with a mashup up that invokes images of sports cars and oral sex. Yowza:

Them Jeans - My Testarossa and My Crack.mp3

*Edit: I just realized this is the third time Them Jeans has played here - D'oh!

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

On the horizon

Click the flyers for more info:

Them Jeans - Thursday, October 4th:

Them Jeans - October 4 in Orlando

Kavinsky - Monday, October 8th (Tuesday should be fun at work!):

Kavinsky - October 8 in Orlando