By Ben Westhoff and Sarah Purkrabek
By Steve Brennan
By Joseph Hess
By Allsion Babka
By Kelsey McClure
By RFT Music
By Christian Schaeffer
By Gabriel San Roman
"My three favorite things to come out of the Midwest are Uncle Tupelo, Son Volt and Wilco. When most bands split up and the different factions re-form anew, the results are often extremely dodgy. It's a testament to both Jay Farrar and Jeff Tweedy that they carried on being so brilliant after the demise of Uncle Tupelo."
Hear that, St. Louis? Brilliant!Even though Brits throw that word around rather lightly, Minnie surely means it to the full extent. And while Driver doesn't rate on our three favorite things to come out of London (that would be 1) the Kinks, 2) the BBC and 3) the birds on Carnaby Street), we'll accept the compliment on behalf of the Belleville boys.-- Christian Schaeffer
While We're Talking Bush
Although San Diego's Black Heart Procession churns out minor-key ditties that perfectly stoke the lovelorn's fires, many folks don't realize that at least half of what the group does takes place with tongue firmly planted in cheek. What good is heartbreak if you can't laugh about it a little? Principal songwriters Pall A. Jenkins and Tobias Nathaniel are not all woe and worry all the time; they actually do have functioning funny bones.
In order to prove this, we chatted with Jenkins about a subject most dear to our hearts here at the RFT: facial hair. There ain't nothing funnier than a moustache, and there ain't nothing more badass than a beard.
The Riverfront Times: So, what's up, you still rockin' a beard?
Pall Jenkins: No, it kinda comes and goes. It hasn't been a long beard for a little while. I used to have the big long beard. Right now it's kinda short, but it's still, you know, facial hair on there. I don't like to be caught with nothing on there.
What do you like about beards?
I think that they're very sexy. They look good on the men. They make men look better. And also, if a girl is dating a guy that has a beard, you know she's looking deeper than just the outside.
What does the moustache mean to Black Heart Procession?
That's Dimitri, that's his calling, just to be the moustache. He used to sport that. We always teased him because he always had a really nice moustache going. We used to highlight it in the photos. That's definitely his power source. Ladies, men, everyone just flocked to that guy. There's no stopping him.
Why do you think heavy-metal dudes are so into goatees?
Evil. They look evil. It's the evil factor. You put a goatee on anybody, and suddenly they're evil. Their eyes turn into little cat-eyes and shit.
What kind of facial hair can we expect from the BHP when they come to St. Louis?Well, we'll have our hot-pink jumpsuits probably; we usually spray-paint the hair blue with green chops. It's like an aqua mixture. Platform boots too. -- Guy Gray