PARTY TIME: Since Warbler Records & Goods opened their doors back in September, it seems the whole town has been buzzing about De la Guerra’s new modestly designed and mightily stocked vinyl haven. The shop, which is owned and operated by über-resourceful engaged couple Kurt Legler and Leigh van der Werff, occupies the building formerly known as Frameworks and has truly reinvigorated the space. Rare and recently released records line the walls and shelves (organized by genre and alphabetically, of course). And there’s a quality selection of compact discs, tapes, and turntables also up for grabs.
Still, it’s a warm and welcoming atmosphere—and Legler’s frighteningly encyclopedic knowledge of collecting—that sets Warbler apart from the rest. (Seriously, I’ve spent two straight hours hanging out, listening to records, and talking shop in there.) Which is exactly why I’m so stoked to check out this weekend’s long-awaited Grand Opening event, taking place Saturday, November 13, from 4-7 p.m. In addition to purchasing some new music loot, attendees can check out deejay sets, enjoy refreshments, and take in a live show from S.B. darlings—and longtime vinyl proponents—Watercolor Paintings. In other words, good tunes, good times, and good friends. Warbler Records & Goods is located at 131 East De la Guerra Street. For info and store hours, call 845-5862 or visit warblerrecords.com. And for more on the store, visit independent.com/warblerrecords.
SO & SO IT IS: While Indiana avant-chamber popsters Margot and the Nuclear So & So’s have long been under the thumb of frontman Richard Edwards, it wasn’t until recently that he made it known—loudly. This year, Edwards said goodbye to more than half of the existing So & So’s lineup, stuck tightly to violinist/lap-steel player/guitarist Erik Kang and bassist/vocalist Tyler Watkins, and crafted the most straightforward and honest album of the band’s five-year history. The result: Buzzard, a 12-track collection of guttural alt-rock that’s about as far from dramatic chamber pop as it gets. Here, Edwards’s lyrics and deliveries are stripped of their former flowery imagery and big, multipart harmonies, left to their own gritty devices atop a crashing mix of hard-hitting drums, screeching guitars, and just enough Americana influence to make it all palatable.
But old-school fans needn’t worry, as the album is still chock-full of Margot’s signature attention to songwriting detail, as well as Edwards’s love of all things lovelorn and animal-themed (see “Birds,” “Claws Off, and “My Baby [Cares for the Animals]”). In between it all, we get a steady helping of tongue-in-cheek numbers like the hot and heavy “Your Lower Back” and quietly meandering “Tiny Vampire Robot,” proving that Edwards never needed all the extra instrumentation in the first place.
This Monday, November 15, at 8 p.m., this new and improved Margot play SOhO (1221 State St.) in support of Buzzard. For tickets and info, call 962-7776 or visit clubmercy.com.
SMALL BUT MIGHTY: Of the many live-show goodies going on this week, Friday’s Eleanor Murray gig at Biko remains top on my list. The Olympia, Washington-based songstress lays claim to one of those quietly powerful voices that resonate loud even at their most hushed tones. And while it’s easy to make the Laura Veirs or Regina Spektor comparisons on paper, out loud, Murray’s style can’t really be pinned as sounding that much like anyone. Heartfelt ditties like “Electric Sky” are heartbreaking in their simplicity and point to a songwriter who not only knows her stuff but also shoots from the heart. Add to that a mighty four-piece folk collective, and I’m betting that even Murray’s jumpier numbers (check out “River”) will live up to their soft-spoken counterparts.
Murray plays the Biko Co-Op Garage (6612 Sueno Rd.) on Friday, November 12, at 7:30 p.m. with Tether Horse. Visit sbdiy.org for details.