Just as the NFL Draft, with all the pomp and circumstance that surround it, is considered by some to be America’s fourth major professional sport, the first few months of every year, during which time details about the annual Festival Season’s numerous events are unveiled in quick succession, is a noteworthy and exciting music-centric stretch in its own right. Rumors abound, travel plans are made, and sometimes vitriolic meditations on the Current And Future State Of Music™ are hard to avoid. But sardined among reliably controversial announcements from Hangout Music Festival, Jazz Fest, Sasquatch, Bonnaroo and Coachella is the one press release that is almost guaranteed to bring nothing but good news for local fans of excellent alternative rock, punk, grunge and ska music: Community Records has released the lineup for their 5th Annual Block Party, and once again they are offering a full-day’s-worth of the best and brightest offerings from DIY scenes all over the country.
Matching last year’s epic headliners the Rx Bandits is an equally – if not more – revelatory announcement that Mustard Plug will be gracing the main stage of Block Party. One of the hardest working bands of the 90s punk ska era, this group of Michigan stalwarts was one of the most pervasive influences on New Orleans’ own ska scene at the time, a legacy that Community Records itself is arguably a manifestation of. Joined by westcoast street ska veterans Left Alone, the Plug will headline a list of touring acts that includes hodgepodge Florida punks Safety, Illinois punk pop band Good Luck, Nashville ska thrashers Stuck Lucky and California’s much-adored A Billion Ernies.
These touring bands will appear along side a lineup of natives that cuts across almost every musical crowd currently rattling cages at the local level. Lords of Block Party Caddywhompus properly get top billing, but the set ranges from modern-punk surgeons The Lollies and The Riffs to the freakishly talented member-sharing melange of Glish, Choi Wolf and Habitat, while an after party at Circle Bar adds Houston’s bluesy art-rockers The Tontons to the jam packed weekend.
The 2012 Community Records Block Party will take place for 12 hours from Noon to Midnight on Saturday, April 21 at The Big Top. The current bill features 24 bands on two stages, with more acts as wells as details about a string of pre- and post- shows still to be announced. Tickets are available online or at the event, and you can save $4 by purchasing in advance or bringing a food or clothing donation to the gate. All donations will go to the New Orleans Mission and a portion of all ticket sales will benefit the Gulf Restoration Network.