Several big egos fit into Kings for three nights last weekend: Liam Gallagher, Noel Gallagher, Rob Halford, Lou Reed (Did he have the acetate with him?), Lindsey Buckingham, Robert Smith, Paul McCartney, Steve Miller, Robert Pollard and Justin Timberlake all made Kings their venue of choice. It’s a good thing Kings banned smoking before midnight: With some of the biggest heads (keep reading) in rock all breathing the same finite air with several hundred fans at 2006’s annual Great Cover Up, hypoxia may have set in otherwise.

The metaphor of the year award goes to Jeff Hart & the Ruins, who took on Oasis Friday night and proceeded to play only deep album cuts and weaker singles, alienating almost the entire packed club. Thing is, the Gallaghers continue to believe they are the world’s gift to music, so people are required to love everything they play, whether or not they know it. Don’t worry, dudes, good one. But, if that subtlety didn’t work, those playing the role of Liam and Noel wore huge bubbleheads to symbolize their egos, and Liam walked offstage and sulked while his brother sang “Don’t Look Back in Anger.” Nice call.

I would have called Eddie Pellino‘s wigged take on Nick Drake the best thing I saw at this year’s Cover Up, butaccording to former Independent critic Karen Mann, writing at her Mann’s World blog ( couldn’t be correct: “No matter how dead-on an act is, acoustic generally doesn’t work for The Cover Up. Let’s be honest: The Cover Up is about seeing friends and having a rowdy time. The guy who did Nick Drake sure did a great job, but it kind of put a temporary damper on the mood.” Totally weird, but I thought the mood was “damp” only because some people were actually listening to Pellino nail the nuances.


If you haven’t seen Southern Culture on the Skids in a while, their Cat’s Cradle show on Saturday, Dec. 16 might be the right time. Rest assured they’ll bring their customary party, but the openers are of special note. Dexter Romweber has reinvented himself in duo form once again, now with sister Sara behind Dex on the drum kit. I’ve heard from several people that it’s the most powerful Dexter has sounded in years. Jule Brownthe musical alias of former Jennyanykind drummer Mark Hollandis slated for the one-spot. Jule’s Smoke and Mirrors was released on Enabler Records earlier this year and was produced by Luna’s Dean Wareham and SCOTS’ Rick Miller.

Looks like we left out some live music highlights of 2006, and a several commenters at told us that: Alejandro, Escovedo, Superchunk, The Avett Brothers, The Old Ceremony, The Silver Jews, Nathan Davis’ friends and the Subdudes. Still forgetting something? Tell us at