Santa Cruz Good Times

Oct 13th
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music_LYLBGreenFlashOnce in awhile, a band hits the scene with a force like some astral phenomenon striking the sky; you can’t ignore it and its colorful, startling resonance leaves you looking for more. Maybe it’s no coincidence, then, that rock trio Green Flash has the name that it does: The band thrusts well-manicured musical ass-kickings seemingly delivered with a slow smile. Edgy. Raw. Intoxicatingly warm. Carly Flies churns out both heavily distorted electric guitar riffs and patient, clean fingerpicking embedded with drummer Peter Wallner’s hard-driving beats—with each citing Sonic Youth and My Bloody Valentine as influences. Then there’s bassist Raya Heffernan, who pilots the melodies and dramatic swagger with unrestrained, piercing vocals that wrap the artful package together like a shiny bow. The band, which started as a duo last year and solidified with Wallner in April, already has buzz around it and plays Thursday, Oct. 22 with Kurt Vile & The Violators.

“Initially we knew that if we just started playing, things would fall into place,” Heffernan says. “And I think that’s what happened.” Recently piecing together its first home recordings, the band builds on each member’s songwriting vision. “We try to have a purity and a passion to be the best band, and not simply a project of one individual,” Wallner adds. And that formula has worked. “The Drowning” slowly unfolds with digital effects filling in the spaces as drum and guitar do a syncopated tango, while Heffernan’s vocals cry out beneath it all with reverb elasticity. Meanwhile on “#666,” surf rock guitar weaves the spine next to Heffernan’s minimal yet powerful wails. With a 7-inch set to be recorded with Josh Alper (The Lowdown, Whysp mainstay) at the Dead Cow Studio this month, Green Flash will refine its debut tracks. And while there’s an unpredictable nature to the experimental songs, they have that magic of making you sing along. After all, it’s all about a sense of community—within the band and in relation to its audience. “Come to our shows,” Wallner ends our chat with an invitation to the public. “We just wanna hang out.” | Linda Koffman


info: 9 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 22. Crepe Place, 1134 Soquel Ave., Santa Cruz. $8/adv, $10/door. 429-6994.
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Mercury Direct in Libra, Columbus Day, Libra New Moon

Mercury completes its retrograde Friday, poised stationary direct Friday evening at zero degrees Libra. Mercury begins its journey through Libra once again, completing its retrograde shadow Oct. 12. Things should be a bit less complicated by then. Daily life works better, plans move forward, large purchases can be made, and communication eases. Everything on hold during the retrograde is slowly released. Since we eliminated all thoughts and ideas no longer needed (the purpose of Mercury’s retrograde) during the retrograde, we can now gather new information—until the next retrograde occurs on Jan. 5, 2016 (1.3 degrees Aquarius), retrograding back to 15 degrees Capricorn on Jan. 25. It’s good to know beforehand when Mercury will retrograde next—Jan. 5, the day before Epiphany. On Monday is Columbus Day, when the sailor from Genoa arrived in the new lands (Americas), Oct. 12, 1492. This discovery by Columbus was the first encounter of Europeans with Native Americans. Other names for this day are “Discovery Day, Day of the Americas, Cultural Diversity Day, Indigenous People’s Day, and Dia de la Raza.” Italian communities especially celebrate this day. Oct. 12 is also Thanksgiving Day in Canada. Monday is also the (19 degrees) Libra new moon festival. Libra’s keynote while building the personality is, “Let choice be made.” Libra is the sign of making life choices. Often under great tension of opposing forces seeking harmony and balance. There is a battle between our lower (personality) and higher selves (soul). We are tested and called to cultivate right judgment and love. When we align with the will-to-good, right choice, then right judgment and love/wisdom come forth. Our tasks in Libra. 


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