Gimme Noise weekly wrap-up: Joke bands, Vampire Hands

Colin Johnson (center) and his Vampire Hands bandmates

Colin Johnson (center) and his Vampire Hands bandmates

News alert: 10,000 Lakes Festival lineup announced

The lineup for this summer's 10,000 Lakes Festival in Detroit Lakes, Minnesota, has been announced, with Wilco, Dave Matthews Band, and Widespread Panic topping the list of big-name acts slated to perform.

Traditionally a jam-band-heavy affair, this year's 10,000 Lakes Festival should appeal to more than one kind of concert fan: In addition to expected names like Wookiefoot and Umphrey's McGee, the lineup includes soul queen Sharon Jones, folkie William Elliott Whitmore, and locals Trampled by Turtles and Cloud Cult. The full lineup and online ticketing is available at The 10,000 Lakes Festival will take place July 22-25, 2009. —Andrea Swensson

Q&A: Three questions with Vampire Hands singer Colin Johnson

City Pages: Word is you've finished your next album. What's the plan? Tentative titles? Leaked tracks? A release date?

Colin Johnson: We're putting the finishing touches on it right now and will be totally finished up at the end of this month. It's being released in a limited vinyl edition of 200 with all handmade recycled covers (what a mouthful!) on the Secretly Canadian specialty imprint St. Ives. It will also be released digitally via iTunes at the same time, so don't fret if you don't happen to get your hands on one of the records. We're calling it Hannah in the Mansion, and it is largely composed of stuff that we wrote right after getting back from tour this fall. We're shooting for a May/June release date, so just in time for people to burn it and cruise to it. It's a pretty cold-ass sounding summer record.

CP: Your MySpace page mentions another trip to SXSW this year, followed by another U.S. tour. Who are you touring with, where are you headed, and for how long?

CJ: We are indeed heading down to SXSW again this year and are going to make an attempt at being considerably more focused and responsible than last time. Hopefully more shows, too, so we don't have as much free time to, uh, "network." Then from Austin we're heading out on tour with Wavves from San Diego; they just signed to Fat Possum and are awesome (see how that rhymed).

CP: What's it like to be a prominent participant in what may prove to be a golden age of Twin Cities music? Why here and now?

CJ: It feels pretty great to be friends with all of the bands you love and be able to see or hang out with them on a regular basis. If this turns out to be another "golden era," I know we'd be pretty damn honored to be a part of it. Not to toot this generation's horn, but I think there are bands that haven't even begun to prove themselves yet and their best stuff is still on the way and hopefully they will be as lauded as the Replacements or Hüsker Dü. As for here and now, well, I think it could attributed to the fact that we're relatively isolated geographically and it really kind of fosters a different kind of attitude about creating stuff. It seems a lot of my favorite music from around here tends to exist out of time and place, and that seems very Minnesotan to me. —David Hansen

Show review: Joke Band festival at Turf Club gets awkward laughs

Featuring strange sounds in even stranger combinations, the Turf Club's first Joke Band Festival was totally weird and still somewhat entertaining. Musician Sean McPherson of Heiruspecs recruited the evening's five-band lineup by entreating folks to put together the band they've always dreamed of creating while highly intoxicated. The results: a three-man doo-wop band, two friends oozing with platonic love, solid raps with not so solid backup vocals, a harmonious female county trio, and an emo goth band. Highlights included:

Dude Wop: Three dudes with beards, each in a white suit coat and bow, tie singing classic 1950s doo-wop. Martin Devaney was part of the trio, as well as a man who dropped the "f bomb" every three seconds. Songs included "Chapel of Love," "Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow," and the bassist's moment of glory, "Blue Moon."

BOK: Metal, maybe? Goth, perhaps? Emo rock? Not sure if the band really knew what was going on, either. The four-piece consisted of a bass, a big man playing tiny keys, and a drummer wearing a Mexican-wrestler death mask. The sound was über-dramatic, slow, and way too loud. The only vocals I managed to hear were, "You are all going to die." —Amber Schadewald

Head over to for more reports from the scene at large, including show previews, reviews, and free mp3s.