So SD is off to Italy in an hour or so. This will be the last post from us for a week and a half or so. ZR says he's going to take the reigns, so expect a couple (at least one) sure-to-be-entertaining posts from him, hopefully not extolling the virtues of his new wah pedal. For our last post, I tackled the rest of the Wizards roster, since the people (well, at least two people) were clamoring for it. You can find the first part here. I will be keeping the Wizards close to my heart while we're in Italy. Of all the times to go on vacation, right after the Wiz win their first playoff game in 17 years. Sheesh. I'm gonna ask everyone to put all of their positive energy towards a Wizards over the Bulls, because I really want to heckle Shaq at MCI Center when we get back. Ta!
Etan Thomas is The Mountain Goats
That was an excellently-timed outburst by Etan in Game 3 the other day. We were there in person to enjoy it. But let's not allow that to change our views on him too much. He's a very solid player, a good first big guy off the bench, capable of throwing up a 20-point game every now and then. But he's more of a banger who brings a physical presence; he's never going to really make you say, "Wow, that sure was a great game from Etan." And, of course, he's a poet. Words are very important to him.
The Mountain Goats -- to me, at least -- are one of those bands that will usually give you a solid effort on every record, but it's never really all that awe-inspiring. On occasion there will be a Coroner's Gambit that's extra special, but especially now that he's moved away from the lo-fi thing, none of it really resonates that strongly. And John Darnielle loves him some lyrics. He will pack as many words as he can into those songs. So it seems like a decent fit for Etan.
Jarvis Hayes is Frausdots
Jarvis came to the Wizards with at least modest expectations. He was a lottery pick, #10 overall. He was thought to be the best pure shooter in his draft class, and it was expected that he would develop into a lights-out perimeter threat for the Wiz. After two years, though, that hasn't happened. He's not even a 40% shooter on his career. But he's shown signs of coming around. And we like him anyway, especially MZ, who declared him her favorite Wizard earlier this year. So even though the results haven't been too great yet, we think there's a good chance for a turnaround, and we'll be rooting for him.
Frausdots came with some at least modest expectations as well. Brent Rademaker was in Beachwood Sparks and The Tyde, two at least solid bands. With Frausdots he ditched the sorta psych-country sound of those two bands and opted for a pretty silly '80s things. It's not all that great, but it shows some signs of being pretty good. And MZ seems to enjoy it more than she really should, just like Jarvis.
Anthony Peeler is Portastatic
First, off let me say that I am an Anthony Peeler fan. I hope for Eddie Jordan's sake he's not completely healthy, because if he is healthy, I can't at all understand why he's not seeing Juan Dixon's minutes in this playoff series. The Wizards signed Peeler because he's been in the playoffs before, he knows what to do. Last year he even elbowed Kevin Garnett in the groin, which was pretty neat. You have him around for his experience and his three-point shooting -- that's it. He can't really do anything else. When the Wiz were beset with injuries earlier this year he came up big in some games, especially in a win on the road against the Lakers. I really hope that while we are in Italy he gets off the bench.
Portastatic is Mac McCaughan from Superchunk. It's his longtime side project of lo-fi singer-songwriter-y stuff. It's nothing all that revelatory, but for what it is, it's just fine. Portastatic is about to embark on a tour with one of SD's most hated bands, and you can be sure that they are bringing Mac along because he's a seasoned veteran of the scene and can offer some insight. Mac also runs Merge Records, and is the veteran on that roster which includes upstarts such as The Rosebuds, Arcade Fire and ... well, ok, Merge has lots of bands that have been around a while. You get the point, though.
Jared Jeffries is Hot Hot Heat
Jared Jeffries is just not a very good basketball player. He was another one of the many Wizards lottery picks, and certainly showed some promise while in school at Indiana. But he has even less to show for his time in the NBA than Jarvis. Jared has absolutely no touch around the basket. He can sometimes make a nice move and get to rim, and he will then proceed to smash the ball off the rim or the backboard, potentially injuring anyone who is in proper rebounding position. Speaking of rebounding, Jared isn't bad except for one thing -- he cannot hold on to the ball. Just watch him. It's like he dips his hands in butter before each game. He's great at tipping balls, batting balls away, but he can never hold on to it. Once every dozen or so games he'll luck into a good performance, but know that it's luck. When I see Jared on the court, my first reaction is often anger that eventually becomes sadness.
Hot Hot Heat is one of the many '80s revival bands making serious cash today. They are not a very good band. In fact, they are a very, very bad band. In fact, they have the double whammy of being an '80s revival band that is also from Canada. Ouch. Like Jared, just hearing a few seconds of these guys makes me very angry, and eventually sad. Also like Jared, because they are working within a very simple format that does lend itself to at least somewhat catchy tunes, they can luck into a good song or two each album. But know that it is luck.
Peter John Ramos is The Fake Accents
You probably haven't heard of Peter John Ramos. Well, I mean, you probably haven't heard of any of these guys, but there are probably a good number of people who work in the Wizards front office who haven't heard of Peter John Ramos. The 7-foot-3, 19-year old Puerto Rican only got off the bench six times this year (including a game back in November that I did a running diary for). But even though he's young and you haven't heard of him, just wait. In a few years, he's gonna blow up. Big time.
The Fake Accents are a young band. Relatively speaking, at least. They don't get out and play shows all that often. Once every month or so, on average. Including a show at the Warehouse Next Door on May 21st with Manhunter and Water School, which will totally kick ass. And even though you may not have heard much from them, just you wait. In a few years time, they're gonna blow up. Big time. Ultragrrl is gonna be asking us for a real-life rock tale. And then we'll tell her to get the hell away from us. Um, I mean they'll tell her to get the hell away from them. Yeah.