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recommended boston area events

tuesday, december 4th

kelly hogan

@ johnny d's

thursday, december 6th

conor oberst

@ converse hall, tremont st.

thursday, december 6th

jason isbell &

the 400 unit

@ the sinclair

friday, december 7th

the weisstronauts 14th

annual holiday jubilee

with guests tsunami of sound

preacher jack, & the derangers

@ the midway cafe, jp

friday, december 7th


moving mountains


@ the sinclair

saturday, december 8th

patrick watson

@ the sinclair

saturday, december 8th

the faint perform

"danse macabre"


icky blossoms

@ the paradise

sunday, december 9th

band of horses

@ house of blues

sunday, december 9th



@ the paradise

wednesday, december 12th

concrete blonde

jim bianco

@ the sinclair

thursday, december 13th

annual boston christmas cavalcade

benefit for the homeless

featuring tons of artists

(see fb event for details)

@ johnny d's

thursday, december 13th

nada surf

eternal summers

@ the paradise

thursday, december 13th

mates of state

in the valley below

@ brighton music hall

friday, december 14th

forgetters (blake from

jawbreaker's band)

& more tba

@ democracy center, harvard square

sunday, december 30th

sufjan stevens

sheila saputo

@ the royale

monday, december 31st

my morning jacket

@ agganis arena

monday, december 31st

deer tick

two gallants

@ the sinclair

monday, january 7th


@ the paradise

tuesday, january 8th


@ great scott

saturday, january 19th

mission of burma

@ the sinclair

sunday, january 20th

camper van beethoven


@ the middle east down

sunday, january 20th


@ the orpheum

sunday, january 20th

ra ra riot

@ the paradise

sunday, january 27th


@ great scott

tuesday, january 29th

kathleen edwards

sera cahoone

@ brighton music hall

wednesday, february 13th

yo la tengo

@ the paradise

saturday, march 2nd

unknown mortal orchestra

@ brighton music hall

tuesday, march 12th

tame impala

@ house of blues

thursday, march 14th

jukebox the ghost

matt pond pa

lighthouse and the whaler

@ brighton music hall

tuesday, march 26th

yo la tengo

@ the paradise

wednesday & thursday

april 3rd & 4th

they might be giants

@ the paradise

visit tourfilter for more shows

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Mp3s: The Soft Drugs in Cambridge, MA

Of all the shows I've captured and shared, I don't think I've ever been fortunate enough to record a band's official live debut. Not that you'd know by this recording that the four men who make up the Soft Drugs had never set foot on a stage together before the small one at TT the Bears in Cambridge last month... they were super-tight and totally smooth, which isn't so surprising given the collective experience of the players involved.

A bit of background: TW Walsh and his family left Seattle and moved to the Boston area earlier this year, and it didn't take him long to pull together some top-notch players to fill out a new version of his solo vehicle. Joining TW, who sings his songs from behind his drum kit, is Michael Murray on guitar, John Beck III on Wurlitzer, guitar, & percussion, and Ken Maiuri on bass (all three provide backing vocals as well). Drew O'Doherty, who played a solo set of his own to open the evening, also sat in on guitar for a couple of songs in the middle of the 8-song TT's set. It was a friend-filled night, as headlining was David Bazan, TW's former bandmate under the now-abandoned Pedro the Lion moniker (interesting that as DB decided to stop using PTL in favor of his own name early last year, TW decided to start delivering his own solo stuff under a band name... and so the universe remains in balance).

The Soft Drugs publicly came into being in the summer of '06, with the arrival of the five-song "In Moderation" EP, which soon became a free download under a Creative Commons license. A Seattle-based version of the band played a few shows before the Walsh clan relocated, but soon after TW settled back in Boston, like-minded Boston-area musicians and friends were brought in to help bring the Soft Drugs to life on East Coast stages. And so it was that on Saturday, October 27th, the quartet did just that in front of an appreciative crowd...

The Soft Drugs

Live at TT the Bears
in Cambridge, Massachusetts
on Saturday, October 27th, 2007

01. Defending The Paint
02. The Pitch
03. Pawn Shop Guns
04. Build Me A Ballpark
05. Badge
06. Don't Sweat It
07. Borrow My Vibe
08. Family of Four

As you'll notice, the song "Badge" remains unshared (at TW's request), but you'll likely be able to hear that one on the eventual release of the Soft Drugs' planned full-band debut full-lengther. Demos are in the works, and we'll hopefully stay updated via his blog or the SD MySpace page as recording sessions take place.

Some links, Soft Drugs style......
  • The official Soft Drugs site, MySpace page, Wikipedia entry, TW Walsh's blog, his own Wikipedia page, his Tower of Song records page, and his Bounce To Disk home recording blog. Speaking of his recording blog, TW has also started up his own mastering business, so check the details here.

  • Additional Audio: Pick up the "In Moderation" EP on iTunes, or download it under the CC license at the Soft Drugs site. Also available there is a non-EP track, on which TW plays all the instruments, and I'll link that here...
    Mp3: The Soft Drugs - "Family of Four"
    For the unaware, before becoming part of Pedro the Lion, TW put out a few releases under his own name between 1999 and 2002, including the fantastic "Blue Laws" album. They're worth hunting down if you can find 'em.

  • Photos: My Flickr-hosted shots are here.

  • Upcoming live dates:
    Tuesday, Nov. 27th - TW Walsh solo
    @ UMass Lowell in Lowell, Massachusetts

    Wednesday, Nov 28th - The Soft Drugs
    @ The Middle East in Cambridge, Massachusetts
    with Maritime & The One AM Radio
  • Listen to any and all 'Nac-hosted Mp3s at le Hype Machine 2.0.

  • the fine print... If anyone has an issue with these Mp3s being made available, just let me know (my contact info in the 'nac faq). Live sets recorded with a Sony ECM-719 mic and a Sony MZ-RH10 minidisc, converted to .wav and then edited to 192kbps Mp3s. Files are made available for a limited time, and are not reposted once removed.


    featured mp3 download
    neil halstead
    live in cambridge, ma
    on november 14th, 2008
    previously: joy formidable - boston 2011

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