This happened.

So I DJed-- believe it or not, for the first time ever-- on Saturday night at the bar in the alley outside my favorite downtown Des Moines music venue, Vaudeville Mews. The space is actually called the PBR bar, because Pabst Blue Ribbon sponsored its renovation (and my DJing gig, too!). Apparently, the Mews sells the most PBR in all of Iowa, which I guess is a distinction of some sort. Anyway, thank you so much to T.J. Wood, Ladd Askland, and Vaudeville Mews for making this happen, to Bob N. for sharing his turntable (it turned out I only used mine), to the Poison Control Center for not one but two typically amazing sets (something like the 265th and 266th of their "never-ending tour"), and to all my wonderful friends who came out and danced.

Here's the setlist (though please note, a few of these I didn't play in their entirety):



Huge, huge thanks to friend (and professional graphic designer) Emily Phipps for the new Des Noise banner.

She also provides all the graphics for another local site, the great Nothing Gets Crossed Out.



Let's have bizarre celebrations.
So the fourth annual 80/35 Music Festival looks to have been a resounding success. You can read Joe Lawler's reports on Saturday and Sunday's activities over at the Des Moines Register. Looks like the fest handily passed its break-even point, helped this year by gorgeous weather on Saturday, and organizer Amedeo Rossi is already planning a sequel next July. My friends Andy and Ryan over at We Hate Music also have photos from days one and two, and I imagine Josh or Jessie will probably post something over at Nothing Gets Crossed Out.

A little-known highlight was probably the after-shows at the back bar outside the Vaudeville Mews; if you didn't go this year, definitely try to check them out in 2012. Set up against weathered-brick downtown buildings, the space looked great, and it sounded surprisingly good, too, giving the music some more room to breathe than in the Mews itself. Plus, on Saturday, the place was basically packed. Wolves in the Attic, who'd had equipment problems earlier in the day, got their chance at anthemic noise-rock redemption, while Mantis Pincers were able to whip up some of their cosmic cooking for an audience that somehow still had energy to keep on dancing. On Sunday night, festival headliners Of Montreal's own Kevin Barnes was out there DJing.

Happy Independence Day! I don't have much else to write at the moment, but some of my trademark fan's-view blurry phone pics are below. As Titus Andronicus's Patrick Stickles remarked from the main stage, "It's hard to be humble when you're on the Jumbotron." As Des Noise pal Travis said to a bearded guy who wasn't Patrick Stickles at the after-show (because Titus totally had to drive 20 hours to New Jersey immediately after playing), "Nice set!"



Hey, look! Prompt for once.

A ridiculously incomplete, highly subjective selection of stuff I've been enjoying this year that didn't already appear on my previous quarterly report.