Once upon a time, cantstopthebleeding.com was one of the nation’s top sports blogeterria (blogoterrarium? blogtoxcity?) destinations, appealing to the friendless and socially challenged. As the nu media wars wore down, the site retreated into near dormancy, maintained by an automated system devised by the same brilliant minds behind the Atari Jaguar.

I’m not sure how familiar you are with the phenomena of “artifical intelligence”, but about 8 years ago the cyborg in question began organizing an annual free show in the middle of March at a respected Red River venue. From day one the event was sponsor free and impervious to the crony-heavy network of booking agents, garbage labels and the like. In short, it made no sense whatsoever but since the bill is always super hot and there’s no cover, hardly anyone complains.

Past participants have included but not been limited to Complete, the Homosexuals, Tyvek, Spray Paint, Protomartyr, Obnox, Golden Pelicans, The Muffs, The Blind Shake, TV Ghost, Puffy Areolas, The Spits, Endless Boogie and far too many examples of yes-you-totally-blew-it-by-going-to-see-the-Oh-Sees-for-the-50th-time-instead. This year’s lineup is no different, except perhaps in that it is THE GREATEST EVER.

The phrase “impossibly prolific” was invented to describe Dan Melchior. To call him one of underground music’s most creative minds is to give way, way too much credit to underground music. His body of work is nothing short of dizzying and the city of Austin has done absolutely nothing to deserve his visit.

USA/Mexico were meant to play last year’s show but King Coffey attempted to rearrange the features of a speeding automobile with his body. You should see what the other guy looked like! Devestation Inc. w/ Craig Clouse (Shit & Shine, Todd), King (Butthole Surfers) and the newly ensconced Nathan Cross (Marriage).

Snooty Garbagemen
is the 3-headed monster led by the monstrous guitar virtuosity of Houston’s Tom Triplett (OBN III’s, No Talk, Homopolice, The Real Energy, Hamamatsu Tom, Crime Wave). Their summer 2015 12XU debut LP won wide acclaim from sources as disparate as NME, Grantland and people who actually know something about music.

Austin’s Xetas have shook the foundations of this building so many times before in their 2-year tenure, it’s a miracle club management haven’t sent them an invoice. Their second LP, a followup to 2015’s ‘The Redeemer’ (12XU) lands sometime later this year.

Ace guitarists who combine influences both trad and avant are a dime a dozen these days and with apologies to Freddie Blassie, I wanna know who’s handing out the dimes. That said, Dublin’s Cian Nugent is an astonishing talent ready to bring some badly need CLASS to this dumpster fire of a rock show, and a mere hour or so spent with his recordings for No Quarter and Woodsist will spell out W-H-Y (with apologies to Discharge).

Holotrash/Goner Recording artistes Black Abba (New Orleans) feature individuals you surely already know and love but nobody’s coasting on pedigree here. This is not the Westminster Kennel Club for fuck’s sake. Their 2015 Gonerfest appearance was so diabolicaly good, it took me 3 months to remember to ask them play this show.

Austin quartet Lung Letters are well on their way to setting some kind of record for breaking microphone stands, and that’s not to say they’re an especially unpredictable band. Quite the opposite, really, if there’s no microphone stands broken, you’re probably entitled to a refund. Though anyone asking for a refund at a free show is really a poster child for “entitled”, don’t you think? Pure goddamn brutality featuring persons you’ve admired from afar in bands like Flesh Lights (Jeremy), The Dead Space (Jenny), Total Abuse (Duncan) and A Giant Dog (Graham).

I briefly considered asking Miami’s Rat Bastard to arm wrestle Dan Melchior for the title of “hardest man in the underground”, but in light of the super shitty box office receipts for “Over The Top”, we’re just gonna keep it to music (of sorts). Rat’s rep as an all-time boundary pusher via Laundry Room Squelchers and To Live & Shave In LA is well established, but teamed with comrades Lisa Cameron (ST 37, Venison Whirled) and Jonathan Horne (Young Mothers, Plutonium Farmers, Ichi Ni San Shi, White Denim) a guitarist whose chops would rival those of SRV, Keiji Haino and Ritchie Kotzen combined it’s fair to expect something truly historic. NO PRESSURE, RAT.

The show is free. You cannot bring your dog.