Archive for Music

Death to Rubber Gloves

Rubber Gloves Rehearsal Studio is dead and gone. I have FEELINGS about this, as I’ve detailed in typically long-winded fashion.

It’s taken me a long time to get to this post. I didn’t really know what to say about the venue, the shows, the things I learned while just being alive inside the structure and by hearing the often raucous and strange sounds coming from the stage. I still don’t know how to put it all into words. Maybe I’m just lazy… but more likely, it was just a big ole thought process to sort through and a melancholy goodbye to have to make.

Rubber Gloves outside building

I like to think that many people grew up at Rubber Gloves Rehearsal Studios, in a way, whether that was through working there, attending shows, or renting out the practice space onsite. Somehow that ramshackle building full of weirdos was a home of sorts to so many Dentonites who came for college, for small town life, or who were born and bred lil D’ers. RGRS. and the shows that took place inside, was indicative of a special ethos and culture in Denton, at least it was for me during those fateful five years, of unrestrained, brazen musical (and personal) exploration.

The building was small, perpetually stuffy and blazing hot inside. You had to cross an old set of train tracks to get there, and the sound of the train was another important ingredient to Rubber Glove’s magic. Just the act of walking, or driving, across those tracks, stepping away from the meat of the city into that dusty corner of Denton, felt like a departure of sorts but also an exciting arrival. As soon as you crossed the tracks, if it was night time, the pulsing and crashing of music inside and the bubbly laughter of outdoor smokers was apparent. From one world into the next.

Rubber Gloves neon sign

A boss at the chain books/music/video store I worked at in high school had already started me out on music I would never have heard otherwise out in east Texas. He played artists like MC Paul Barman, De La Soul, DJ Shadow, Afrika Bambaata, and more, out in my Camaro, doors flung wide, music as loud as possible. He was a key ingredient in my future, unknowingly so, and I feel tons of gratitude for those tiny slices of time spent with him.

I started seeing shows at Rubber Gloves my freshman year of college. Another dude (we’ll call him J) entered the scene, albeit in a very different way, and became a big part of my life as well, crafting and molding my impressionable country mind into one of a burgeoning music explorer.

One night during my freshman year I went to a party with my best friend. We didn’t know anyone there, and they proceeded to feed us Everclear cocktails (unbeknownst to us). We got HAMMERED. Some things happened, and I accidentally (purposefully) wooed a gentleman in an orange Tripping Daisy shirt (I had recently developed a love for the Dallas band’s sound) and cajoled him into spending time with me. My forceful drunken act turned into a years-long ‘thing’, and friendship that has lasted long past. This dude, J, ended up being a humongo influence in my life, musically and beyond. He introduced me to the likes of Boards of Canada, Melt Banana, Sleep, Neutral Milk Hotel, jazz (in general), Olivia Tremor Control, local Dallas/Denton bands like Adventures of Jet, Baboon, Centro-matic and many many many more. He started me on the path of music nerd-dom at the ripe old age of 18.

Rubber Gloves inside stage

J started taking me to Rubber Gloves Rehearsal Studios, where I saw a cavalcade of important, mostly independent, rad-ass bands. Along with my best friend, J, and a slew of other close friends, I frequented RGRS on a weekly basis for years. I partook in Big Ass Beer Nights on the regular, got stomped on by Yasuko Onuki of Melt Banana, saw J pass out face first onto the concrete floor, made out with multiple people, bummed cigarettes off of Brent Best (of Slobberbone) and smoked them outside in the balmy Texas weather underneath that red glowing RGRS sign, and even met my husband there (when I was there with another dude, who has remained a lovely friend).

I went on to work at a small record store, Seasick Records, in Denton, start writing about music for various blogs/websites upon my post-collegiate arrival in Seattle, interned at Sub Pop Records, and continue seeing shows anywhere I could, usually getting in for free. It all started with my old boss, continued and blossomed with J, and was further ingrained because of the grimy genius of a simple music venue with no A/C and terribly gross bathrooms.

Us at RGRS, for the last time

I don’t owe it all to Rubber Gloves, but I owe a lot of who I am to the times I spent there. When I heard it was closing, the pang of disbelief was strong. How could such a revered institution close just like that, leaving all of its devotees hanging? The answer, of course, isn’t any easier than the question and is a somewhat private matter of the club’s owner, who definitely did not want to close the club.

Brett and I went to the last weekend of shows, the Saturday set, with grieving hearts but smiling faces. We saw people we knew and had forgotten, long lost friends, acquaintances who we now felt more of a kinship with, and made a couple of new friends, all within the span of one night. I took the time to look at everything, to visit the nasty bathroom one more time, to look into the face of Josh, the owner, as he wearily trudged up and down the stairs with boxes of what I can only assume are residual dreams and sad goodbyes. I bounced my head to the music and enjoyed seeing some old faves and new stalwarts of the scene, and I cried a little. Walking away from RGRS that night, right at the train track crossing, I turned to see that glowing sign one more time, with feelings of both sadness (where will all the young ‘mes’ go to find their music?) and gratefulness (if not for J and RGRS, what would I be now?)

Glowing RGRS

It was an end of an era, not just for me but also for Denton. New clubs and venues will pop up, thrive, and leave, as usual. The town and its cavalcade of freaks seeking liberal refuge from tiny towns (like I was) will continue to exist and grow up and move on. The spirit of that place will live on I hope, as long as we want it to. It seems silly to lament over a building, a broken-down crusty building at that. But I guess it’s more than just a building. And everyone who went there, who was imprinted with its history, relevance, and spirit, knows that.

Farewell, godspeed, good luck. xxxooo


All images courtesy of my and Brett’s Flickr pages.

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Better the Second Time Around

I have so much to write, so much to say here. Too many swirlies… to-do lists… projects to complete..

So, let me say a word about an album I enjoy.

This Themselves remix album, ‘The No Music of Aiff’s Remixed’ is still a favorite, 11 years after it’s release. I memorized every crunchy beat, all the fuzz-obscured lyrics, the picked-apart and reassembled (slowed down, messily speeded up) layers in college.

It’s such a weird album, I admit, and this remix is better than the original album by far – which is rare. I won’t bother describing it further. You can try it out, if you like. It’s keeping my eyes and typing fingers alive at work today.

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Ambient me, please

Erratic beat-punching, grand spacey echoes, digital cries, epic rise and falls. This is what Oneohtrix Point Never’s “R Plus Seven” sounds like, and it’s fueling my morning productivity today.


Some other tunes to enjoy include: Kelela – “Cut 4 Me”, Darkside – “Psychic” and Clark’s “Feast Beast”.

Hat tip to Daniel Talsky and Brett Spangler for helping me fix my borked blog. It’s still a work in progress.

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Fun Fun Fun and More Fun


I ponied up and trekked Fun Fun Fun Fest for all three days. It was my first time at FFF… and it unceremoniously kicked it’s big sister, ACL’s, hiney to San Antonio and back. Highlights, in order of importance:

Television. TELEVISION.
Deltron 3030 and Dan the Automator, in the flesh
Losing my new iPhone 5C at the end of day 3 in the magical dust in front of the Deltron stage
Finding my phone at the Lost and Found (you, phone-turner-inner, deserve a beer on me)
Brett’s trusty Stanley flask
Sarah Silverman in the hot sweaty comedy tent (or why having USP passes, albeit it for free and by chance, is important)
Shlohmo and XXYYXX‘s beats
Haymaker‘s Green Chile Queso Fries (the remedy to my hungry and sloshing rum-belly)

I’ll be back, Fun Fun Fun Fest, I’ll be back. Hopefully by that time, you will have upped the USP pass ante (this year the perks were a joke!)


Photos courtesy of Christine Aldrich and Lori Malick, respectively.

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Muzik: Spotify & Turntable FM

I switched jobs recently. I no longer work at home (which isn’t my favorite) BUT I do have a much cooler gig! I work at Front Gate Tickets in Marketing/Social Media. SO… music is a really big part of my day. Making playlists, talking about music, writing about music… selling tickets for music shows.

This isn’t really a big shift for me, in a way. I’ve been doing music writing for years, have interned at record labels, and have been immersed in the independent music scene for a long time. Two big new music applications that I’ve been delving into at work are Spotify and Turntable FM.

They both have their pluses and minuses, their fans and haters, and I find myself enjoying both. Spotify (my username is: shriespangler) is great for discovering new music. When I check out an album review or get a suggestion it’s super easy to plug that into Spotify and listen to the album. I also like to subscribe to my friend’s playlists, which can be fun. Such a great way to share playlists! I don’t buy into the premium or upgraded subscription, I’m just running it on free mode right now and have had no problems with it.

I equally enjoy Turntable FM (my username is: Shrie Bradford Spangler). It’s fun to jump in a room with a couple of friends (real or of the “e-friend” variety) and swap turns at playing songs. It’s basically like an online collaborative DJ set. Sometimes it can get tiresome if you don’t want to listen to the same thing your room-mates are playing, but it’s a great online social way to spin some tunes.

So get out there, play some music, share it with some people and GET DOWN!

PS – Wanna create a Turntable FM room with me? I have good taste, I swear.

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Pantone Markers and schtuff

Okay, hold the phone. These Pantone Markers are DELICIOUS. I’m such a geek for Pantone colors, and markers.. oh my! I have hundreds of markers, glitter pens, colored pencils, crayons etc. I just adore them.

Behold these beauties, just waiting to be pressed to some fine gorgeous card stock! Gorgeous. Want.

Life has been… challenging lately. I started a new job, which is really kind of on the edge of my dream job. I’m FINALLY working in music (sorta) and I’m FINALLY getting paid to write and blog about bands. Switching from a work at home attitude to a work at the office during specified hours attitude has been difficult though. Add a new job + school + still trying to craft for my Etsy shop + blogging for Austin Craft Riot + volunteering as Online Publicity Coordinator for Austin Pets Alive! and you’ve got ONE BUSY BEE named Shrie!

Life is oh so busy. But I’m trying to soak up the good parts, deal with the bad parts, and just grow. Things are exciting! Things are good, but things are in flux. Sometimes it’s hard to see the big picture amidst all the worries, gripes, adjustments and hardships of daily life. But I’m working on that…

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Rock shows, tattoos and neighborhood brunches

I don’t know about all of you in the world of internetz, but I had a fairly busy weekend! The weather here has taken a turn for the autumn, and the blustery gray rainy days are back. This weekend felt like the beginning of all that, but I didn’t let the weather slow me down one darn bit.

Friday night, even though I was exhausted and stressed from the work week, I met a dear friend out for drinky drinks and tater tots downtown before heading to night two of Seattle’s City Arts Fest. I was covering the Wye Oak/Seabear/Fruit Bats/Blitzen Trapper show for regional music blog Another Rainy Saturday, where you can see my lengthy review of the lineup.

Clem y Iris

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Busy weekend!

I had a busy weekend, y’all… and it just keeps getting busier! I spent two whole days at the Bumbershoot Music Festival here in Seattle and saw loads of great acts, including: Baroness, Bobby Bare Jr, HEALTH, Bomba Estereo, The Whigs, Solomon Burke, Justin Townes Earl etc.

I’m working with a bunch of uber-talented folks to put together the etsyRAIN Pre-Holiday Craft Fair here in Seattle (meeting up tonight!), and I STILL haven’t gotten pics and listings of some items that I wanted up in the shop for back to school… BAH! Oh well. Here are some pics of me from Bumbershoot. Fascinating, I know.

Back soon with MUCH more interesting blog fodder. Pinky swear.

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Custom Embroidery

I’ve wanted to do a bit of custom keepsake embroidery for a while now. My best friend had a baby a little over a month ago, so I really wanted to create something for them that was special, handmade and super cute! I think this speaks for itself… I can’t wait to do more!

I designed it in Illustrator, printed it on paper, traced it with a Sulky pen (which, by the way, I am NOT a drawer or artist so tracing the image accurately proved to be quite difficult) and then iron-transfered it to the fabric. Then I just had to embroider it and NOT mess it up! There is a tiny mistake, but I think it’s minimal. And in the grand scheme of things, it’s part of the handmade charm in my opinion.

This weekend I’ll be attending the Bumbershoot Music Festival and covering it for Another Rainy Saturday. Fun times in the sunshine! I’ll post links to my coverage when it all goes live.

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music + festivals

This past weekend I went to the No Depression Festival at Marymoor Park in Redmond. Marymoor is such a fab park, with it’s wide open spaces, multiple sports fields, concrete paths for walking or biking, climbing wall and FANTASTIC dog park. We’re usually there to take advantage of the dog park and let our furbabies swim and run a bit, but on Saturday we went to hear some folk and Americana music.


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THEESatisfaction, Sarah Jaffe & Fuck Buttons

I do a bit of music writing in my free time, when something strikes my fancy. I previously wrote for for several years, and now am writing for Travis at and Chris B at Visit these sites, they are good people and deserve to be read!

Sooo… if you’ve been jonesin’ for some fresh femme rap (and who isn’t!) take a gander at my review of the THEESatisfaction show on Saturday at the new and improved Columbia City Theater. The venue is gorgeous and Thee Cat and Stasia Satisfaction put on a walloping good time.

Other reviews of note include my take on sultry Texas songstress Sarah Jaffe’s phenomenal performance at the Tractor Tavern and the retardedly loud and incredibly mind-blowing Fuck Buttons set at Chop Suey, both from back in June.

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Today: last minute gas station hot tea, blackberries, Luna bar

So I’m going to start taking pictures of my breakfast and posting them here occassionally. I’m going to be accountable to myself for the kinds of breakfast I’m eating! No more chocolate donuts, or 7-11 taquitos (okay… maybe sometimes). Don’t judge!

Dusty Springfield is awesome. She sang so many songs you know, that you didn’t know she sang. This song was written by Carole King. **hearts**

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