This Little Underground 

Bao Le-Huu takes on Lazy Boyzzz, Wet Nurse, Maylene and the Sons of Disaster and more

click to enlarge CHRISTOPHER GARCIA
  • Christopher Garcia

I hear people say all the time that they thirstfor something truly different around here. Well, how about you put your money where your mouth is?

With the help of some local champions of progressive culture, Orlando composer Christopher Belt is organizing the Accidental Music Festival (Sept. 4-13) revolving mainly around Urban ReThink. Besides concerts, the series will connect composers, students and audiences through composer-led public discussions, open rehearsals and workshops for middle- and high-school composers. Stylistically, the event spans classical, jazz, electronic and avant-garde music. But as opposed to the custodial attitude prevalent in some of these genres, AMF’s focus is resolutely on the creative relevance of new music. In other words: the now. And it will all be free to the public.

But it takes money to put it on. The AMF is a true gift to Orlando’s music scene, so get on its Kickstarter page. Besides full details and a schedule, that’s also where you can donate funds to help make it happen. They have until Aug. 22 to meet their $6,000 goal, and they’re already more than halfway there. So, music heads, you still have more than a week to tangibly improve your community. Talk is cheap.


Lazy Boyzzz and Wet Nurse celebrated the release of their new 7-inch split, Wet N’ Lazy (Aug. 6, Hoops Tavern). The best part about this show: Five dollars got me both entry and a copy of the new vinyl twofer by a couple of Orlando’s best young bands.

As is becoming expected from them, both bands delivered. Wet Nurse is gaining momentum as the area’s best girl group and Lazy Boyzzz is already way better and more thundering than most of the hot garage-punk bands buzzing nationally right now.

Opening was Melbourne’s the Dull Blades. In not only their first Orlando show but their first appearance outside of their native Brevard County, the two-piece arrived with some pretty tall style and swag with nice, full guitar work that makes them anything but minimal. Raised on lots of White Stripes, they kick out wagging rock & roll born of the garage. As always, see for yourself – they’re playing the second edition of the Two-Piece Mini Fest (Aug. 26, the Social).

Over the course of their first two albums, I loved Maylene & the Sons of Disaster.They were one of the best hard Southern rock bands to arrive in a long time. Yes, I knew full well that frontman Dallas Taylor came from – yikes – Jesus-core act Underoath.But that’s what made his grisly Dixie-brawler reboot all the more redemptive, or so I thought. Then III happened, introducing some mawkish vocal styling that began to taint the well they had going so mightily, and now I’m worried.

Their next album, IV (out Sept. 27), features more of those milquetoast commercial-rock strands, threatening what was once a seemingly unsinkable battleship. They’re more committed to it this time, and are comfortable enough to make it work better than the last outing, but to move in this direction is curious. There are good reasons, both artistically and professionally, to evolve, but this shift toward the dying middle makes zero sense in terms of sustainability. Pander and you may get more money and profile in the short term, but you may well kill your integrity in the long run, if not for all time. The dark country, swamp or blues edges of their sound are fronts worth mining. But there are already enough dumb, middling Southern rock bands out there.

Their live show (Aug. 2, the Social) still kicked real nuts. It was a WJRR 101.1 show headlined by 10 Years, so the Sons of Disaster’s onstage proclamation that this was the least intense audience they’ve played to here is reasonable compared to what they’re used to. But that’s some nerve for a band that seems to be increasingly bending toward commercial purgatory.

As for 10 Years, I don’t know why people listen to this radio pap. Well, I know why, but they shouldn’t. The band is just another fatality of mixing hardness and emotionality in a way that just ends up blunted at both ends and soft in the middle. Hey, Sons of Disaster, peer into this mainstream abyss.It’s not too late for you, y’know.


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