Titanmoon is back.
As I first told you last August, the Fort Worth foursome is active again, after a hiatus following 2010's We All See Stars. Led by singer-songwriter Tyler Casey, Titanmoon lost two of its founding members ( Trey Ware and Nate Schneidewent) in 2011 and gained guitarist Austin Alvis and drummer Forrest Perry. The revamped band has just released its first album in three years, a gorgeous, ambitious piece of work titled Bang Bang, and with it, an absorbing hybrid of documentary and music video titled Churches, Salons and Bars.
Casey was on hand this week at Dallas' Angelika Film Center to oversee the world premiere of the 90-minute film, which he directed.
"What you are about to see is raw," Casey told the audience before the film began. "It's also real. What it is about, I'm not really sure yet."
And, indeed, it's tough to succinctly describe Churches, Salons and Bars, which follows the yearlong process of making Bang Bang, as well as documenting the lineup changes and incorporating slick music-video interludes. (There's also a sublimely goofy riff on spaghetti Westerns, complete with Italian subtitles.) It's a revealing peek inside Titanmoon's artistic process, as well as a love letter to Dallas and Fort Worth, providing glimpses of places many likely never venture.
The band's manager, Elizabeth Eshelman, says the guys are aiming high: Titanmoon would like to get the film entered into competition at the Cannes Film Festival (the deadline for 2013 submissions is March 11). If that doesn't pan out, Eshelman says Churches, Salons and Bars will be screened again, and the band plans to play more shows in support of Bang Bang.
For more info, visit titanmoon.net.
Fort Worth Music Festival on the move
As I first reported earlier this week, the 2013 edition of the Fort Worth Music Festival has both a new date (May 17-18) and new digs ( Panther Island Pavilion).
The move is surprising, as it uproots what was formerly known as Jazz by the Boulevard (until the event was rebranded and refocused in 2011) from the Cultural District and integrates the two-day festival into the pavilion's increasingly jam-packed schedule. Moving FWMF from its usual September dates into May also cuts down on the chance that the festival will suffer the wrath of Mother Nature (storms played havoc with the festival's second day last year).
"This is a festival which continues to grow and evolve as it becomes a truer reflection of this dynamic city and its multifaceted music scene and heritage," said fest promoter Marsha Milam in a statement. "Panther Island is the perfect setting for this event.... It simply represents the best of Fort Worth, as we intend for the festival to do."
Another change for 2013 is Milam's partnering with Spune Productions, a move that finds the festival adding a third stage to its schedule. No bands have been announced (the schedule's due out soon), but the statement promises "an eclectic lineup of Texas country, indie, R&B, jazz and gospel."
Pre-sale tickets for the 2013 FWMF go on sale Monday via the fest's website, www.fwfest.com.
As for the Cultural District's loss, Camp Bowie District president Lisa Powers tells me there are no immediate plans to replace the festival.
"Our board of directors decided to not be the host of the Fort Worth Music Festival this year," Powers writes in an email. "The board gave Marsha the right to continue with the festival, but we are no longer affiliated with it. At this time, we do not have plans for another music festival at that location.
"With that said, the board is still very supportive of another music-based event along Camp Bowie, but perhaps in a different location and/or different fashion. We wish the festival continued and greater success."
Preston Jones is the Star-Telegram pop music critic, 817-390-7713