White Colla Crimes join the eclectic bill at Strange Bedfellows.
Strange Bedfellows Series feat. White Colla Crimes, Spickle, Giant Cloud and Metronome the City
10 p.m. Sat., Jan. 9
One Eyed Jacks, 615 Toulouse St., 569-8361; www.oneeyedjacks.net
Hey, Paul Webb: Think Spickle concertgoers jam out to Giant Cloud, Metronome the City and White Colla Crimes in their cars on the way home?
Webb's answer comes quickly and with conviction. "I could pretty much guarantee, no."
The guitar impresario — by day, he's the owner of the 9th Ward instrument emporium Webb's Bywater Music; by night, six-string brick mason in the instru-metal giant Spickle — means no disrespect to any of those outfits. He's not sure if fans of the bands with whom he's now sharing a bill are familiar with his group either.
This is precisely the point of the "Strange Bedfellows" concept, says organizer Jason Songe. Planned as the first in a series, the concert unites bands that have never played together in the hopes of drawing musicians and audiences out of their comfort zones. Songe, talent buyer for the Circle Bar and creator of the music Web site LiveNewOrleans.com, says inspiration came from, of all things, a wedding party.
"Jay and Kendra (Morris) had this reception at One Eyed Jacks two months ago, and it was (metal band) Eyehategod with (bounce rapper) DJ Jubilee," Songe says. "I've always liked the idea of eclectic shows. I like going to eclectic shows, and I don't know why there aren't more diverse shows going on."
Part of the problem, he believes, is that talent buyers often feel confined to one genre in pursuit of the largest possible crowd. What, then, to expect when instrumental metal (Spickle), corporate-gangsta rap (White Colla Crimes), retro psych/folk (Giant Cloud) and arithmetic experimentation (Metronome the City) collide?
"I think it'll be a big party," says Marc Laporte, keyboardist for Metronome the City. A Crescent City native, his recollections of Spickle predate the band's 1997 origins. "(Drummer) Kenny (Sumera), he was playing in a bunch of bands in high school, and we'd all go see his bands."
This being New Orleans, the connections between the disparate acts don't end there. Several members of White Colla Crimes also perform in the freeform instrumental rock group I, Octopus, which released a split 7-inch with Metronome in 2008. Webb, a cog in local music circles, supplied some of the gear that will be used in Saturday's show.
"The drummer from White Colla Crimes always comes in and buys his sticks and heads and stuff from me," he says. "[Metronome] are friends of mine, old customers from the Music Exchange Uptown."
The wild card, each band says, is Giant Cloud. Recent transplants from Ruston, La., the sweetly lyric Park the Van signees are largely unfamiliar to the musicians they'll be performing with. The feeling is mutual, says singer Julie Jones. "I don't think I've heard of any of the bands that are on the list," she admits.
It won't be the first time Jones has been part of a mismatched lineup. "When I was in high school, I used to play solo shows at the Darkroom in Baton Rouge — like, me in this pink flowery dress and all these hardcore bands that were pissed: 'Why is this girl playing?'" she says, laughing. "While I was playing they'd soften up a little bit. After, they'd get back up and do their windmill kicks and whatever."
One thing all the bands share is a regular spot on Songe's Circle Bar calendar. It was at a Giant Cloud show there last month, White Colla Crimes rapper Michael Lentz says, that Songe first mentioned the idea of a Strange Bedfellows revue. Lentz had come to hear another band, Sarah and the Soft Shoes, and got wrapped up in Giant Cloud by accident.
"They've got a weird mix: a '70s hippie vibe, but then some harder rock things going on sometimes," he says. "I found it to be pretty interesting. I bought a CD."