Anna Ranger at Ace of Cups Saturday night. Photo by Danielle Petrosa
The past weekend was pretty jovial because two ex-pats had performances scheduled around Thanksgiving family visitations. Disco-house deejay Garrett David played music at the Rehab Tavern, Friday. Anna Ranger was able to have a release show Saturday at Ace of Cups because its core member Nathan Snell was home. Garrett David was in town from Chicago. When Garrett was in High School in Columbus, he made a name for himself under the moniker Adulture. Garrett was a key figure in the rebirth of the dance party in Columbus by playing a pivotal role in Scott Niemet’s Sweatin’ Party, and also took part in a few classic shows including one in 2009 with Diplo at Skully’s, Garrett moved to Chicago shortly thereafter. Chicago is the home of House Music. Things have gone pretty well for him, Garrett does a weekly show with House legend Derrick Carter and Michael Serefini called Queen at the Smart Bar. He is also the music buyer at Gramaphone Records, a revered record store in Chicago. Garrett has put out a few records including a recent release under the name BellBoys with his roommate Adam Rowe. He also recently toured Europe. Friday, he was back home in Columbus and spun at George Brazil’s Juice Bar Party at Rehab. I’ve always thought Columbus equipped him well for Chicago. He came up in a scene with elders. Garrett was young but always super respectful. So for him to spin with Derrick Carter in Chicago, and entertain the godfather of house, Robert Williams, might be a dream come true. But it is also in stride for Garrett. Also,Sweatin’ and all of Scotty’s parties were GLBT friendly, so for Garrett to have residency at a Queer-Friendly party like Queen in Chicago is in chorus with his Columbus history. Chicago has done young Garrett well, I must say. When Garrett deejayed Friday, he played the most musical, and vibrant house and Disco I’ve heard in sometime. You could hear piano licks, and all sorts of instrumentation, without disrupting the tempo definition that one needs to control a dance party. I was impressed. And at the end of the night Garrett was still the young dude who just wanted to go home, eat a pizza, and chill out. Saturday had Nathan Snell returning to Columbus from Nashville to play Ace of Cups with his band Anna Ranger. Anna Ranger was a long-time synth-death pop DIY staple with various line-ups that always included Snell. Anna Ranger's current incarnation Saturday had Snell playing with Columbus rock royalty Sam Brown (New Bomb Turks, Divine Fits), and Philip Park (TJSA). There was a forth person who I did not recognize who someone told me was Dan Boeckner of Wolf Parade. I am not sure if it was. But Sam Brown is in Divine Fits with Boeckner. Sam and Boeckner are debuting their new band the Operators at Double Happiness Thursday, so it’s possible. Either way, having Sam Brown, and Philip Park with Snell in Anna Ranger is already a supergroup. It was a release party for Anna Ranger’s new album, “Swimming and Crawling.” on Stochastic Records. My favorite thing about any Nathan Snell project is, he masters whatever he going for first. So Anna Ranger’s goth-pop baritone style singing sells you on the idea that you are living in the late 80s, have a weird hair-cut and are obsessed with a New Wave female. But lyrically, Snell always delivers dead-pan humor that basically just plainly states the absurdity of life in an isolated workingman manner that always makes me laugh. Early on, he played a song in which the lyrics were, something like, “I can’t drink and drive. How will I get to work.” If you can imagine Morrissey saying that with a straight, brooding face; it’s funny. But it is also true. Snell works in the electrical field and drives to work. It is also somewhat of a spooky thought when you are having a drink at the bar. As the night progressed, people danced and celebrated their friend being home and releasing an album. Another memorable song was a “All You Think About Is Sex (But I Am Alright With That).” I am going to be honest and say, Snell announced it as a cover but I don’t know who it’s by, and google just gave me the names of porn-sites. Snell delivered it as his own. To summarize the Holiday Weekend, Garrett David, and Nathan Snell are both examples of how Columbus-reared artists often have an acute understandings that maintains a purity but don’t lose their down-to-earth Columbus perspective.

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