Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Square Zeros Show Listings, Thurs–Mon, November 20–24

Square Zeros Show Listings, Thursday–Monday, November 20–24

[[Thursday, November 20:]]

One of the best parts of music is not only seeing where artists have come from but where they are going. Nova Luz of The Amputees (Louis Ramos with Nova Luz, SZ #13) takes the stage to kick off the weekend on Thursday with some of her solo work at Goodbye Blue Monday 10:30pm FREE LINK

Nova Luz (Amputees)

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Picture Dump 11.18.2014: The Rizzos, Party Lights, BIG HUGE, Jacques Le Coque, Now People, Flowers of Evil, NO ICE, Polyon, Sleep Fleet, Yin Yangs, Hounds Basket

The Shows: The Jeanies (Joey Farber, SZ #23) at Muchmore's w/ BIG HUGE, The Rizzos, Party Lights — Thursday, November 6, 2014

Glassy Eyes vol. 3 presents The Jeanies (again) at Don Pedro w/ Flowers of Evil, Now People, Jacques Le Coque — Friday, November 14, 2014.

Sunset Guns (Derek Hawkins and Jon Mann, SZ #10) at Muchmore's w/ NO ICE, Polyon (Ryan McLaughlin of Typefighter, SZ #7), Hounds Basket, Sleep Fleet, Yin Yangs — Saturday, November 15, 2014.

Depicted below: The Rizzos, Party Lights, BIG HUGE; Jacques Le Coque, Now People, Flowers of Evil; NO ICE, Polyon, Sleep Fleet, Yin Yangs, Hounds Basket.


— DJH, BW, + JM

Thursday, November 6
The Rizzos:

Monday, November 17, 2014

In Defense Of: Bleed American, Jimmy Eat World

This In Defense Of was contributed by Jamie Frey, a Brooklyn-based singer-songwriter and freelance music journalist who needs this now more than he ever did.

It’s possible that some of you are cringing at the very title of this piece, and I think that the other half of you are feeling a warmth of youthful “sweetness” in your loins just at the mention of the record. I also must preface this defense — as many of you may be thinking or projecting upon me — with this disclaimer: I did not grow up as a devotee of American pop-punk or emo. I never went to the Vans Warped Tour. I was not a teenage obsessive of Jawbreaker, Sunny Day Real Estate, Alkaline Trio, or even Fugazi. I was not seeking out obscure record labels with the punkest punk or the most emotional emo or the indiest indie. I’m not even that familiar with Jimmy Eat World’s earlier three albums, which many will argue are more pure and good than this big hit-filled crossover record. But that is not what I am writing about; I am writing about the populist rock ‘n’ roll that you heard on the radio. I’m talking about Bleed American (or the self-titled Jimmy Eat World for post-9/11 weiners). I’m talking about songs that make young people want to hold hands and kiss.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Square Zeros Show Listings, Weds–Sun, November 12–16

Square Zeros Show Listings, Wednesday–Sunday, November 12–16

[[WEDNESDAY, November 12:]]

Copycat Night presents The Planes (Stephen Perry, SZ #2 and Brian LaRue, SZ #30) as Velvet Underground w/ Electric People, Wonderbug at Otto's Shrunken Head 9pm $5

The Planes

Wednesday not your thing? Well...

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

ZeroFest picture dump, Chris Giorgione edition 2

If you've been following Square Zeros the past month, you're probably familiar with the stellar images captured by Chris Giorgione, a Brooklyn-based videographer who does a ton of great work on behalf of local musicians. He shot almost all of ZeroFest last month, and he just dropped off some rad edits from those nights, along with some more pictures of your beautiful faces. Below is the second round of what he got. Stay tuned this week for video from the ZeroFest weekend. Thanks Chris!

RIGHTS: All bands, bookers, and publicists are free to use the photos below, as long as you attribute to Chris Giorgione. If possible, please include this link to his production website:

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Square Zeros Show Listings, Weds–Sun, Nov. 5–9

Square Zeros Show Listings, Wednesday–Sunday, November 5–9

[[WEDNESDAY, November 5:]]

Where did you nurse your Halloween hangover?

We get it. CMJ, Halloween — you're beat. WELL GET IT TOGETHER IT'S TIME TO ROCK.

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Picture Dump 11.04.2014, Halloween Edition

Suck it, nerds.
For the last half-decade, tribute shows have been the way to spend your Brooklyn Halloween. Each year, they come earlier. Even though Halloween was on Friday this year, there were tribute shows as early as the previous weekend.

One man said 'Enough's enough,' and went to see George Clinton talk about his new memoir, Brothers Be, Yo Like George, Ain't That Funkin' Kinda Hard On You? at New York Public Library.

The legend himself, seated.


But then, you know, we all went back to checking out shows.

The Shows: King Pizza Records Halloween show, featuring Mad Doctors (Seth Applebaum and Greg Hanson, SZ #20) and Greasy Hearts (
Joey Farber, SZ #23) at Don Pedro w/ BIG HUGE, St. James and the Apostles, The Gabba Ghouls Friday, October 31, 2014.

Pet Rescue (Brian LaRue SZ #30)) "Rock and Roll Memoirs to Remember", featuring an Operation Ivy tribute (Derek Hawkins and Jon Mann, SZ #10, Jeremy Duvall and Alex Heigl, SZ #17), Dashing Blumpkins (featuring guest vocals by Stephen Perry SZ #2 and Jim Wood SZ #19), and a last-minute throw-together Guided By Voices tribute at Pet Rescue — Saturday, November 1, 2014.

Depicted below: Greasy Hearts, BIG HUGE, The Gabba Ghouls, Dashing Blumpkins.

It's not George Clinton, but enjoy.

— DJH, BW, + JM

Friday, October 31

Greasy Hearts:

Monday, October 27, 2014

Picture Dump 10.28.2014: CMJ Edition

The Shows: Sunset Guns (Derek Hawkins and Jon Mann, SZ #10) at Legion w/ Faux Ferocious (TN), iVAMANOS!, The Unders, Fine Peduncle (TN) Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Hearts Bleed Radio Official CMJ showcase presents The Planes (Stephen Perry, SZ #2 and Brian LaRue SZ #30), The Jeanies (Joey Farber, SZ #23), The Black Black (Jon Daily, SZ #26), and Sunset Guns at Legion w/ pow-wow!, GHOST PUNCH, Light Therapy — Friday, October 24, 2014.

Depicted below: The Unders, iVAMANOS!, The Black Black, pow-wow!, The Planes, GHOST PUNCH.


— DJH, BW, + JM

Tuesday, October 21

The Unders:

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Square Zeros #30: Brian LaRue (The Planes, Shelter Dogs, The Blowout! Dialogue From A Silent Film, Women's Basketball, Pet Rescue)

It’s tough to know where to start with Brian LaRue, because he’s such a damn talented dude and has a hand in such a cool batch of projects.

You might know him as the Telecaster wizard in the indie rock outfit The Planes, which you’ll find playing scruffy pop tunes all over the north Brooklyn circuit. Or maybe you recognize him as the crooner at the front of the more aggressive four-piece Shelter Dogs or the bassist in brooding post-punkers Dialogue From A Silent Film. Have you been to a show at Pet Rescue, the cozy, off-the-grid DIY space by Cooper Park? Brian’s the brains behind that. And if you’re really lucky, you might have caught him performing a solo set as Women’s Basketball. He’s also a hell of a good writer, especially when it comes to music.

If there’s a way to package all that, it’s this: when Brian leaves his stamp on something, it’s unmistakable. You can hear it in his knack for vocal melody, his proclivity for big yet tasteful guitar riffing, and his mordant and often hilarious lyrical emanations. No fucking pretense.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

ZeroFest Pictures: Chris Giorgione Edition

Y'all might have noticed a handsome devil with a nice camera lurking in the crowd during ZeroFest. That's our pal Chris Giorgione, a videographer based here in Brooklyn. He's a music lover, an ace with a Canon Rebel, and an all around solid dude, and he does a lot of work on behalf local bands. He shot a bunch of great video and photo during ZeroFest and we'll be posting it here over the next couple weeks. For starters, here's a taste of night one at Human Head Records, featuring Spaghetti Blacc, Clean Girls, The Amputees, and your beautiful faces.

Square Zeros Show Listings, CMJ Edition, Tues–Sat, Oct. 21–25

Square Zeros Show Listings, CMJ Edition, Tuesday–Saturday, October 21–25

[[TUESDAY, October 21:]]

If the event name bears out, this might be the first and last CMJ show you attend. Ginger Core Kills CMJ presents our favorite psychic slack rockers Chimes (Win Scarlett, SZ #18) via a staggered pricing system that pays you in pizza to come early and charges you not unfairly to come later. Show up fashionably early to get down w/ Dream Police, Survival, Psychic Blood, Natural Velvet, Sediment Club at Silent Barn 5:30pm FREE before 8pm/$5 8-10pm/$10 10pm-2am LINK


Thursday, October 16, 2014

Square Zeros #29: Leah Wellbaum (Slothrust, Slothbox)

"...Oh — you want that one? ...Yeah, alright, sure." — Leah Wellbaum, when asked if we could use Slothbox, "Did You Hear About the Devil?" for Square Zeros

Here at Square Zeros, we never claim that it's going to be easy to pull out old recordings and reveal them to strangers, or even your fans. We're continually impressed with our guests' willingness to pull out the tapes and blast those old songs; more often, we're impressed by how awesome those songs are.

When we contacted Leah Wellbaum of riffy Brooklyn indie rockers Slothrust about coming on the show, we got a positive response and one of those brilliant moments that reminds us why we do this:

p.s. my old project is solo and it is called Slothbox! I think there is a tape coming out of it actually. It's a lot of old casio keys and me singing about vomit and kidnapping.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Square Zeros Show Listings, Weds–Sun, October 15–19

Square Zeros Show Listings, Wednesday–Sunday, October 15–19

[[WEDNESDAY, October 15:]]


Now, we tend not to promote out-of-town shows, because a lot of bands we feature are touring bands, and it'd get way, way out of hand to list all of them. That said, when you take a bruise like Chris from GYMSHORTS (SZ #27) did at Don Pedro last weekend entertaining our Brooklyn family, you acquire certain perks and privileges that reach beyond mere in-town show promotion. So hey, if you're in Providence tonight — hell, you probably don't need us telling you to see GYMSHORTS — but we'll do it anyway: get your ass down to their homecoming show, because you know a band's never better than when they've got homefield advantage at the end of a long string of shows w/ Whore Paint, Hard Nips, Downtown Boys at AS220 8:30pm $6 LINK

Pictures of your post-homecoming show bruises should be directed to squarezeros(at)gmail(dot)com.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Picture Dump 10.14.14: The Mad Doctors, Gymshorts, Big Huge

The show:  The Mad Doctors release show and tour kickoff (Greg Hanson and Seth Applebaum, SZ#20, with Josh Park), Gymshorts (SZ#27), Big HugeThe Rizzos, Graveyard Lovers, Friday, October 10, Don Pedro. 

Depicted below
:  The Mad Doctors, Gymshorts, Big Huge. 

Monday, October 13, 2014

In Defense Of: Dashboard Confessional

This In Defense Of was contributed by Alexandra Smyth, a Brooklyn-based writer, poet, and Swiss Army Romantic.

I'm cringing, just a little, as I write this.
Chris Carrabba. Photo: CC, freschwill.

Now, don't get me wrong — I am one thousand percent here to defend Dashboard Confessional to you, dear reader. But the very essence of what I think makes Dashboard Confessional worth defending — their earnestness — is the very thing making me cringe right now. I'm betting deep down that earnestness is what makes you bag on them too.

Think back to when you were 16. For the sake of this essay, I'm going to talk about myself, but I want you to think about who you were at that tender age as well. At 16, I was chubby and excruciatingly awkward girl growing out an ill-advised pixie haircut. I made my own T-shirts emblazoned with phrases like "geek rock" and took photos of decaying things for my photography class. I had a terrible crush on a boy with a hot pink mohawk who in turn was in love with the prettiest punk girl in our neighborhood. My entire existence that year was that of a perpetually skinned knee — raw and obvious and oozing. Everything felt painful all the time, and it makes me squirm just to think about it. Maybe you're wincing too, thinking about your former self.

I was already listening to emo — of course I was — the usual Vagrant Records and Saddle Creek suspects, but when I heard The Swiss Army Romance for the first time it felt like I had made a tremendous discovery. Here was a man completely exposed and unafraid to tell the world how he was really feeling: Chris Carrabba was practically drowning in his own vulnerability. I had never heard anything like it. Dashboard Confessional was a band that embraced the feelings I had trouble expressing, who wrote songs that even seemed to celebrate these unpleasant feelings, in their own odd way.

With lyrics like "as for now I'm gonna hear the saddest songs / and sit alone and wonder how you're making out," and "close lipped / another good night kiss / is robbed of all its passion," I finally felt like someone got it. Now, I'm not here to defend the quality of these lyrics. This is not good writing, by any means, but I do think there's a real, if misguided, bravery present here. For many people, and more specifically, for many awkward 16 year old girls, it's not easy to say how you really feel, especially when the feelings are this jagged. It takes a certain level of courage to make declarations like “this is where I say I’ve had enough / and no one should ever feel the way that I feel now / a walking open wound / a trophy display of bruises / and I don’t believe that I’m getting any better." At 16, I ate it up. At 28, I want to give Carrabba a hug and ask him if he needs help finding a therapist. The lyrics are borderline histrionic, but he’s obviously feeling these feelings, and at 16 I felt them too. It’s hard to listen to, and it’s painful to remember.

Dashboard Confessional had happy songs that capture specific moments for me too. I remember driving down the George Washington Parkway blaring 
"Hands Down" from my beat-up Delta 88’s shitty sound system after a very successful first date with the shaggy-haired, olive-skinned boy who would become my first long-term boyfriend. I giddily shrieked along with the song, particularly the final lines, "and you kissed me like you meant it / and i knew that you meant it / that you meant it," absolutely shocked that I'd had the balls to kiss him — and that it had worked! Again, what the lyrics lacked in sophistication was more than made up for in the combination of jangly guitar chords and the open emotion in Chris Carrabba's voice. I put the song on a mix tape that I made this boy for his birthday a couple of months later, and it went on to become one of many songs that we considered to be "ours." Twelve years later, I can't listen to "Hands Down" without recalling the details of that first date.

Almost 15 years after discovering Dashboard Confessional, I have a vague sense of mortification whenever I hear one of their songs, much like whenever I see pictures of myself from that era. There is a level of sincerity to both that causes an almost offensive level of secondhand embarrassment. As adults, earnestness, sentimentality, and emotional vulnerability are things to be avoided like the plague. Dashboard Confessional possesses all of these traits to an exponential level. No one I have met has ever wanted to re-live their teenage years, with all the discomfort and messy feelings that go along with it, and that is precisely why I think Dashboard Confessional receives an unfair amount of our ire. You can't help but be reminded of a painful former self when listening to them.

Because of this, I think we all can relate to, and maybe even appreciate many of Dashboard Confessional's unvarnished sentiments. I've even seen it demonstrated in the private karaoke rooms of Saint Mark's Place and Koreatown in New York City. In a roomful of hip young adults, not one of them needs to look at the karaoke marquee because they still know every single word to "Screaming Infidelities," and every single one of them is singing right along. Maybe Chris Carrabba was right. Perhaps, as in "Vindicated," we are all "flawed," but we are also "cleaning up so well." Maybe it’s time we let ourselves have those earnest feelings, from time to time, no matter how indulgent they may feel.