It's almost officially over. Summer, that is. So the fun-loving bar crowd at Carpool has decided to have an all-day party indoors and out to bid the season a fond farewell. Starting midafternoon Saturday and rocking through 12 hours into the single digits of Sunday, the venue will offer an array of local bands who know how to rock rowdy crowds.
The Fairfax County-based band known as 33 West had a particularly good summer. Besides playing for its growing fan base on the East Coast, the group played dates in L.A., joined the prestigious pop-punk Warped tour for some regional shows and even played a gig in the Bahamas.
The origins of 33 West date to 1995, when lead singer Andrew Gorski, bassist Ken Barnum, drummer Nick Hughes, trumpet player Dave McGraw and trombone player Jacob Walters met in high school. The band had several different lineups before guitarist Joe Nelson came aboard in 2000.
33 West released its first full-length album, "So Far Off to a Bad Start," last year. According to Nelson, quoted in the band's press materials, "The 16 tracks that appear on this album represent almost three years of hard work and dedication coming out of myself and my five best friends." Although the CD is an independent release, recorded at Cue Studios in Falls Church, major league producer Jim Ebert, who's worked with SR-71, Meredith Brooks and Marvelous 3, helped on four of the tracks.
The group's rhythmic brew of rock, punk, reggae and ska has won it numerous honors, including first place in the Ernie Ball National Battle of the Bands (2002) and second place in the National Hard Rock Cafe Battle of the Bands (2001). You can find out more at www.33westmusic.com.
For the guys of No Second Troy, a brand-new self-titled and self-released EP follows the band's full-length 2004 indie debut, "Fall" -- recorded at Bias Studios in Springfield, where the Dave Matthews Band and Mary Chapin Carpenter have made hit albums. You can hear samples from both releases at the group's Web site, www.nosecondtroy.com.
In the two years it's been together, the quintet has gained a loyal local following, performing at area venues such as IOTA and Velvet Lounge, and made the trek to Austin for the alternative rock festival SXSW.
Of course, when you've got 12 hours to party, two bands is just a drop in the beer bucket. Among the other acts scheduled to perform during the Blowout is ThatGuy, four goofballs who mix and match cover songs from more than four decades, as varied as Lynyrd Skynyrd and My Chemical Romance. (ThatGuy is also playing Saturday night at Last Mango in Gaithersburg, so expect them to appear fairly early on the bill.)
There's also 8 Track Jones, featuring dueling male and female vocalists, with members of local Northern Virginia bands including Quazi, Evick, Unity Project and High Maintenance. And you can hear the four-piece ska rock band Jackie Gino, DJ Dr. Tom and the Paul Minor Band. All for a $5 cover, so pick a designated driver and dive in.
-- MARIANNE MEYER
Carpool bar and restaurant is at 208 Elden St., 571-203-7995; www.carpoolweb.com. Additional information about the event is available at www.partydc.com/v2.
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