April 25, 2016 by motorcityrocks
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October 15, 2015 by motorcityrocks
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Well, the wild and wacky tale of the Robocop statue continues to develop. A presentation and announcement planned at the Detroit Police Department has been cancelled, according to Mitzye Ribbas over at ThinkJam. This may lead some to wonder whether the bronze coated behemoth will ever be raised and immediately defaced like a Shinola clock…but fear not!
“We know that fans have been eagerly awaiting news on the effigy honoring one of Detroit’s finest and we look forward to sharing those details in the near future,” explained Ribbas.
Disappointed? Well, at least you didn’t donate to URGH! A Detroit Music War or whatever it was re-titled to. In the meantime, boogie down to Comerica where Robocop will still be throwing out the first pitch and the first 10,000 fans still get a complimentary Robocop poster.
September 26, 2015 by motorcityrocks
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Ryan Graveface, Elsa and Phaedra Greene are the spirits at the heart of Savannah, Georgia electropop group The Casket Girls. They’re playing a free show on February 23rd at Founders Brewery in Grand Rapids as part of the Graveface Road Show. With them will be Ryan Graveface’s shoegaze project, Dreamend, and dream pop outfit The Stargazer Lilies (who happened to put out one of my favorite albums of 2013). I’ll certainly be there and you should too. There will be some photos and an interview with Stargazer Lilies following the show as well, so stay tuned for that! Recently, I was able to ask Ryan and Elsa a few questions about their music, their influences and their ghosts. Let’s get into that…
JUSTICE: So, your tour kicks off February 14th in Georgia. Aside from playing in your home state, are there any dates on the tour you’re particularly excited about?
ELSA: Yes. Well, actually I have never been to Montreal and so I am most excited to practice my French. Otherwise Phaedra and I have always felt especially connected to New Orleans, so we look forward to that. Hmmm… Am I obsessed with the French? Warm weather and ocean water will also be welcomed with open arms. But really, every city and show is a new adventure that we are very much looking forward to.
JUSTICE: What can people who come out to the show expect?
ELSA: Expect good new fashioned live music, chrome, tea, and sympathy. And perhaps an elaboration on cardio work out warm ups…
JUSTICE: How did The Casket Girls form?
ELSA: Unlikely as it may be, my sister Phaedra and I met Ryan Graveface in the park. Truth be told, we mostly thought he was just hitting on us, but one thing led to another, (so to speak) and as fate would have it we started this threesome. (So to speak). We originally thought it would be a recording only project and never dreamed we would take it this far. But as we all know, life is funny.
JUSTICE: Where do you draw inspiration from when working on your songs?
RYAN: John Wayne Gacy and his paintings, homemade absinthe, heartbreak, ESP & Kuma’s.
ELSA: Fay and I are somewhat compulsively obsessed with breaking open this small perspective we have all agreed to share for so long, and exploring the idea of reality. We do a lot of dream analyzation, and spend a lot of time working toward true connection with the collective unconscious. So we draw from these ideas a lot lyrically. That and of course our common experiences of love and loss.
JUSTICE: How does sisterhood affect your writing process?
ELSA: I believe connection and understanding are what really affect the writing process in any collaboration. So we could have the same connection as best friends, which we also are, or as strangers that met and for whatever reason were magnetically drawn to one another… We have only known Ryan a few years and feel an unexplainable connection to him as well. But in our case the affect has been super positive and brought us even closer, if that’s possible. It’s always inspiring to see someone you know so well in a new light.
JUSTICE: There’s an element on mystery to your physical appearance from the photos we were able to dig up. Is there a reason for this?
ELSA: As I mentioned before we originally thought this would be a recording only project, so we never planned on performing. But as the project sort of grew legs of its’ own, and we began to discuss preforming and touring, Fay and I were utterly terrified. So we invented this physical diversion, and sunglasses etc. as a security blanket of sorts. And just like babies, we are now completely attached.
JUSTICE: One of my friends [and occasional contributor, E] here had an interesting experience driving through Georgia. She saw what she thought was a person appear in front of her vehicle, only to disperse into a cloud of vapor when the car hit “it.” She recounted the event to a friend later who insisted it was a “hot steam.” The only information we could find on it was in To Kill a Mockingbird when the term is used in reference to a spirit that sucks out people’s breath. Have you heard of this legend?
RYAN: I have not but that’s pretty awesome. I once wrote a song called ‘Pig Man’s Bridge’ based on one of the only GA legends I know of. A man was part of a circus forever ago. He trained pigs and made them do tricks. It is said that he was mean to the pigs and that when he got too old to travel he settled under this bridge and built pigpens on the hill. The pigs ended up killing the man and now the man haunts the bridge and has a face of a pig. I should mention I really enjoy living in Georgia.
JUSTICE: Are there any particularly haunting experiences you’ve had throughout your lifetimes?
ELSA: Yes, Fay and I seem to attract the inexplicable. We have had several experiences that insist there is so much more out there that we don’t know or understand. But becoming friends with the unknown seems to make it much less scary. There was one night a few years ago, when it seemed we had a house guest. The experience lasted from about 8 at night until 5 in the morning. We kept hearing this voice calling our dog from inside and outside the house. We heard footsteps. Lights went on and off. We could just feel the presence of someone, but never saw them. But we welcomed them. It wasn’t scary, just bizarre.
JUSTICE: I had a chance to listen to the new album, True Love Kills The Fairytale, and found that the songs seem much more concise and, forgive me if you find this term offensive, but poppy.Sleepwalking and The Casket Girls EP weren’t lacking in melody, but True Love… seems danceable at times. Do you feel like this was a natural evolution of your sound or did you set out to write songs more in this vein?
ELSA: It felt and feels like a natural evolution to me. We didn’t plan anything at all. We just let ourselves be inspired by the music Ryan sent us. But I do agree, and am not offended that it sounds more poppy. It is very fun to rehearse.
JUSTICE: What have you been listening to lately? Any new albums or songs you’ve been enjoying?
ELSA: Honestly, I can’t stop listening to the Stargazer Lillie’s album, and am just thrilled to be touring with them. Also we toured with Trust for a week or so last year and although I listened to their album a fair amount at the time, it has had a strong resurgence in the house. It’s so good.
JUSTICE: What’s the coolest thing you’ve seen? Period.
ELSA: this morning when I woke up I found Phaedra curled up at the foot of my bed under the blankets in her winter coat with a ski cap pulled down over her face clutching her pillow from when she was a baby. Period.
September 13, 2015 by motorcityrocks
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Let’s mostly focus on what we’re doing Saturday night. Sure, tonight may find you distracted by the Detroit City FC game. After all, who doesn’t want to see the Admirals get trounced? Also, Tone is heading up a benefit for Dave Martin who just suffered a home break in. Definitely a worthy cause. Nonetheless, I’ll be leaving the rowdy boys to their own devices. Kevin Murphy is making a somewhat rare appearance as Lions at the Gate, his solo project since Stare into the Sun. The songs feel like God shooting a load into your mouth.
So, once I’ve cleaned myself, it’s time to game plan for Saturday night. Here’s the rundown:
House Pre-Drinking: Sure I’m cheap. We’ll crack open a bottle of Maker’s Mark that has miraculously survived for too long and fill a glass up a few fingers deep. Lightly soused, we’ll freshen up a bit more before show time.
Ye Olde Saloon: There’s an old joke that goes like this: Who doesn’t enjoy drinking at the Ye? The kind of person that would use an orphan as an ashtray. However, we can only stay for a few drinks. The music is about to begin!
Trumbullplex: Trumbullplex is kicking it off early at 7 p.m. Pewter Cub headlines, with Benny the Jet Rodriguez, Growwing Pains, and Private Parts playing support. The whole show is supposed to be done by 10. Dave, from Pewter Cub, is on work-release from an Ecuadoran prison and has to catch the red eye out of Metro. Remember, Trumbullplex is BYOB.
Lager House/New Dodge: Tyvek and Parquet Courts are playing in town. I was wrestling with the notion of going. Parquet Courts sound a hell of a lot like Television. I love Television. But have I gotten so hip that I not only like Television but also dislike bands because they sound like a band I like? Fear not…the shit sold out. No decision needed. If you have a ticket, I’ll drop you off…but you’re taking a cab back. Instead, it’s off to the New Dodge for the Ill Itches/Jon’s Birthday. I’ll be ready to chain-smoke by this point in the night anyhow.
Alright, time to head back home! If you’re nice you can watch me fall asleep to episodes of “I Spy”.