Oklahoma shares Mints with Gainesville, Lips still absent


Published: Thursday, June 1, 2006 at 9:34 a.m.
Last Modified: Thursday, June 1, 2006 at 9:34 a.m.

Oklahoma shouldn't be on the map.

Let's be honest, since it's just you and me here. Oklahoma historically has done about as much for music as New York City has done for cattle wrangling.

And yet the Flaming Lips are the greatest band on Earth; they not only put Oklahoma on the map but also transformed it into the national center for psychedelic pop.

Since we're being honest with each other, the Flaming Lips are never coming to Gainesville (that is, if their past touring schedules can be used to predict the future).

But the nebula of musical creativity the Lips created in Oklahoma has birthed a bright shining star in their wake: Starlight Mints.

Borrowing from the Lips' zany psych-pop and the deadpan conversational vocal styling of Pavement's Stephen Malkmus, Starlight Mints, who hail from Norman, give Oklahoma another source of musical pride.

The music is catchy, quirky, melodic rock with occasional strings and horns. Personally, I think they have more in common with Pavement than the Flaming Lips, but hailing from Oklahoma and claiming the Lips as a major influence, I suppose comparisons are inevitable.

And I guess, in a way, Starlight Mints are kind of like the Flaming Lips' little brother. You know, the kid you meet after being friends with the older brother for a while, maybe at a bowling alley or something, and right away you can tell they're brothers and you laugh at how cute it is that your friend has this miniature version of himself, but the little brother is shy and doesn't say much, so you kind of write him off, but eventually you get to know him and find out he's just as cool as his older brother albeit in a different way?

OK, that was confusing. How about this: Starlight Mints are good.

They've just released their third album, “Drowaton,” and they hit Common Grounds, 210 SW 2nd Ave., Saturday along with Dios Malos and Octopus Project. I recommend catching this show.

Let's take a gander round the ol' town to see what else we have in store.

Tonight at 1982, 919 W University Ave., By the Horns, The Aurora, Borealis and For Daylight will shake things up. Should be a pretty good punk/hardcore show.

Also tonight, Club Red, 101 SE 2nd Place, has London's Werewolf Epidemic. So, watch out for those fangs (or insert your own bad werewolf joke).

Common Grounds has Valient Thorr, Stressface and The Hold tonight. Valient Thorr looks pretty terrifying, and Stressface is the house band for No Idea Records, so this should be a great show.

Friday night is chock full of rock. The Atlantic welcomes Currents. They take quite a few cues from U2. Actually, one of their songs is an exact copy, note for note, of “Where the Streets Have No Name.” I'll let you make your own judgment about that.

Common Grounds has Whiskey and Co., and The Worst on Friday. Whiskey and Co. have established a solid reputation playing really nice alt-country. Plus, they have a female singer, which this town definitely doesn't have enough of. And, with a name like The Worst, you know those guys have got to be good.

At Eddie C's, 1315 S. Main St., By the Horns, Impurity, Cystic Dysentery and Nail S*****r (rhymes with "bitter"; asterisks courtesy of squeamish little editor man) take the stage on Friday. Impurity members describe themselves as bestial death metal influenced by Eastern mythology. That seriously sounds interesting.

The Side Bar, 15 SW 2nd St., has Colourslide, The West Fifties, the Vinyl and House of Flying Cards Magic Troop on Friday. Colourslide is comprised of many of the former members of the now-defunct local rock group Time. It will be interesting to see what they've come up with.

Saturday is a very busy night. In a word: prioritize.

At the Atlantic, The Beat Buttons perform with Nervous Systems and Averkiou. Beat Buttons should need no introduction. They serve up some of the best Indie rock/dance music found round these parts. This show is going to be a lot of fun.

Bar One, 1 W University Ave., has Alphabet City, Two Finger Suicide, Girls on Film and Kenesaw Mt. Landis. Alphabet City has quietly become something of a heavy hitter in the Gainesville music scene, as has Two Finger Suicide. They play some really nice soft, melodic Indie music. And again, female singer equals a good thing.

Eddie C's has Core and Broadway on Saturday. Core compare themselves to Three Doors Down and Creed. Ouch. Of course, what makes one man cringe makes another man clap. So, if you're into those bands, check this one out.

The Side Bar hosts Shane Cotter Experience, Javelin Jackson, Audio Origami and The Good Land on Saturday. Shane Cotter Experience features the former keyboardist from One Drop, so fans should definitely check out what he's doing now. Javelin Jackson plays some pretty good hard Indie dance music.

Shamrock features Orlando's alt-country/Americana sensations The Heathens. These guys are one of the best bands coming out of Orlando, and their show is not to be missed.

Over at Tim and Terry's, D.J. B.O. is having another dance spectacular. D.J. B.O. is in the running for most unique person in the Gainesville music scene, and that's saying something. If you like Chuck Berry-style rock 'n' roll and 1960s rhythm and blues, show up. It's a huge dance party and everyone is invited. What more could you possibly ask for?

Tim and Terry's is just north of the UF campus at 1417 NW 1st Ave.

On Sunday, Eddie C's will have Red Jumpsuit Apparatus, Monty, Veronica's Veil, Rosedale and Giuseppi. See Jason Sanchez' elegantly crafted piece on Red Jumpsuit Apparatus, above, for more details.

Also on Sunday, 1982 has Against All Authority, Grabass Charlestons, The Body Electric, The Sense Offenders and Black 22. Punk show, anyone?

On Monday, do yourself a favor and go to the Shamrock for the Tom Miller Show. Regardless of what he has planned, I guarantee you will leave a little disgusted, a little frightened, a little confused and a lot aroused.

Every time you support local music, an angel gets an electric guitar.

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