Messer Chups

Messer Chups - Mondo Harp

Messer Chups - Mondo Harp

Y’all, I do my best to stay on top of this stuff, so I felt like a chump when I walked up to the merch table at our local Messer Chups show to find an album I’d never seen before. Their new one no less! To be fair, Mondo Harp has been strangely under the radar, with barely any mention on facebook and not yet having made its way to bandcamp or even Amazon. The opening track “Humanica” has a video available but it’s promoting the tour, not the album.<--break->

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Messer Chups and The Bills at Portside Lounge

Messer Chups at Portside Lounge

Despite New Orleans' historic charm and notoriety, we're simply often not a geographically ideal spot for a tour and our small size (New Orleans Metro Area sits just below 1 million) makes it a risky opportunity. That said, there's an unwritten law that says that if you name your album after a swamp, you have to tour at the swamp, so I'm glad Messer Chups complied with the law.

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Messer Chups release Taste the Blood of Guitaracula

Messer Chups - Taste the Blood of Guitaracula

Here's the latest from everybody's favorite Russian instro group. While their general sound isn't much different from their recent albums, it's not all draculas and coffins: you've got some pleasant steel guitar thrown into "Hula Drag-u-La", and you've even got a batman theme on "Chupacabra vs Batman". For whatever reason, we get another version of Popcorn with "Children of the Popcorn" (Zombie Shopping had "Popcorno"). I've listened to it a few times but all I really have to say is that it's Messer Chups -- you know what to do.

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The Guitaraculas release Preachers of the Night

The Guitaraculas - Preachers of the Night

Man, what a time to be alive. The Messer Chups (or in this case a side project of the Messer Chups) can release an album and you immediately have a chance to listen to it. You used to have to dig around for the one site that seemed to be holding them at the time. That said, if you're looking for a physical copy, that still may be the case as doesn't have it listed yet.

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Surfguitar101 Convention 2016

Cars outside Surfguitar101

After years of "maybe next years", I finally got my ass in gear and bought myself a plane ticket to Los Angeles for the Surfguitar101 Convention, organized chiefly by Jeff "Bigtikidude" Hanson as a big ol' meetup for members of surfguitar101.com and, you know, surf nuts in general.

Let's just skip to the end real quick: it was an absolutely incredible time. It was a kinda special thing to me getting to see a scene that I've only been a part of from afar, and the music started good and managed to top itself with each act.

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Gremmy Awards 2015: Best Album Art

Gremmy Awards - Best Album Art 2015

We're kicking off the 2015 Gremmy Awards with the least musical award, but one that I love. Despite my love of Bo Diddley, I DO judge a book by looking at its cover, at least initially. Perhaps instro gets a little too wrapped up with the aesthetics and tropes that have been used since the 60's, but there are absolutely plenty of bands using art that's fresh and alluring. Enough that I had to make some hard decisions about who NOT to include.

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Messer Chups release The Incredible Crocotiger

Messer Chups - The Incredible Crocotiger

The Messer Chups don't quit! The Russian trio have been moving at a steady pace of one album every two years (or better). This one's got plenty of the semi-trad off-kilter instrumentals they've been at for a while, but with a small helping of rockabilly and a little more saxophone than we've been accustomed to from them!

Still weird. And the album art plays well to my Louisiana tastes.

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