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[whitespace] Point and Shoot

Remoter takes aim with its latest CD, 'gun'

By Sarah Quelland

LAST THURSDAY (Dec. 28), Remoter celebrated the long-awaited release of its new CD, gun, at the Usual with Chris Landon and Hippie Aggression supporting. Known for his work with Bammie-winning Squeeze the Dog and Crash Landon, Landon's recently been playing in local clubs with various musicians and as a solo performer. He has at least two impressive demos floating around and put on an appealing set at the Usual, closing with the beautiful "This Feels."

While Hippie Aggression stands out with thick sonic layers and heavy guitar riffs, the band's vocalist detracts from the impact of the music. The petite dreadlocked frontwoman delivers spoken word that's distorted beyond recognition, and in a medium that relies so heavily on the significance of the words, the distortion effect destroys the potential power of her poetry.

Remoter, on the other hand, was absolutely amazing. Watching frontman Andrew Fleig onstage made me think that this must have been what it felt like to watch Jim Morrison and the Doors perform at the Whisky a Go Go before they hit it big. I got the feeling I was watching rock & roll history in the making. Fleig has a riveting stage presence and a captivating voice with remarkable range. His provocative lyrics are disturbingly full of torment, pain, loneliness, sarcasm and irony, and the band's bouncy industrialized rock only adds to the irony of the songs. People in the audience couldn't keep themselves from moving and dancing to the catchy tunes. In my opinion, Remoter (which also features Gordon Gurley on drums, Richard Kratt on bass and backing vocals, Jeff Hefti on samples, acoustic guitar and backing vocals and John Flannery on guitar) is one of the most commercially viable rock bands in the South Bay. Its album gun isn't only one of my favorite albums released by a local band this year, but one of my favorite albums released by any rock band in the year 2000. It's strong from start to finish with should-be hits like "Oblivion," "Feed That Period," "Splash," "Masterpiece," "Just for Effect," "Take a Bullet" and the haunting "Infant." Remoter's club dates were always few and far between, and now that Fleig has moved to Los Angeles to take the next step for the band, Remoter's local shows may become an even rarer treat. Visit www.remoter.com for updates.

In honor of the real new millennium and independent music, Eric Fanali and Grand Fanali Presents are putting on a whopping 22 shows in 15 weeks in a music blitz dubbed 2001: A Rock Odyssey. All-ages concerts will be held January-April at the Fishbowl in Sunnyvale, the Cactus Club in San Jose, the Los Gatos Outhouse in Los Gatos, the Phoenix Theater in Petaluma, the Seifert Center in Stockton and other venues. Highlights of this four-month string of shows include the fifth annual Canopener on Feb. 23 at the Great Hall in Menlo Park; the fourth annual Phatty Patty Festival held March 3 at the Fremont High School Cafeteria in Sunnyvale; the first Sillycon Valley Brown Out featuring acoustic performances by Bay Area bands and taking place April 14 at the Fishbowl; and Grand Fanali's 22nd Birthday Bash on April 13 at the Los Gatos Outhouse. Other particularly exciting shows announced so far include two at the Fishbowl: Slow Gherkin, Pirate All-Stars, Sandwich Mafia and Short Round next Saturday (Jan. 13) and Creeper Lagoon, Xiu Xiu, Ee and Contrail (Jan. 27); along with Samiam, Wunder Years and Touched by a Janitor on Jan. 20 at the Cactus Club and Monkey's fifth anniversary show on Jan. 26 at the Los Gatos Outhouse. It looks like Ellis, which was searching for a new name, has cleverly renamed itself Keeping Ellis and has a date lined up Feb. 10 at the Fishbowl with Luckie Strike, Time Spent Driving and Fighting Jacks. Find updates in upcoming columns or visit www.FBOWL.com for more info. Agenda Lounge is bringing Sting's son's band, Santa's Boyfriend, into town Jan. 16. ... The California Guitar Trio, featuring Terry Bozzio and Tony Levin, performs at the Usual on Jan. 27.

PLAN AHEAD: Adverse Side-FX, Jan. 5 at the Gaslighter Theater in Campbell; Funkranomicon, Jan. 6 at the Agenda Lounge; Marilyn Manson and Godhead, Jan. 10 at the SJSU Event Center; Souls of Mischief, the Basics and Major Liegue, Jan. 11 at the Usual; Luxt, Jan. 11 at Paradise Lounge in San Francisco; Dilemma, Aftermage, Breach, 26mph and Careworn, Jan. 14 at the Cactus Club; SnoCore Icicle Ball, Jan. 19 at the Santa Cruz Civic Auditorium; Venus Bleeding, Jan. 21 at Paradise Lounge; Horchata and Creamsickle, Jan. 21, above Paradise Lounge; SnoCore Rock Tour, Jan. 21 at Maritime Hall; Pantera and Soulfly, Feb. 6 at the SJSU Event Center; A Perfect Circle, Feb. 8 at the SJSU Event Center.

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From the January 4-10, 2001 issue of Metro, Silicon Valley's Weekly Newspaper.

Copyright © 2000 Metro Publishing Inc. Metroactive is affiliated with the Boulevards Network.

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