IUMA Celebrate Release of IUMA 2.0 With Rad Party

We could barely squeeze into the Ace Cafe in San Francisco the night

before last (June 9) for the IUMA 2.0 party. IUMA, who co-publish ATN

(but who, we might add have no control over what we do or don't write

about), were celebrating the recent release of IUMA 2.0, the

graphically stunning new version of the award-winning web site.

Featuring beautiful '50s-meet-the-'90s graphics created by a number of

mysterious artists including two who are known only as "Brandee" and

"Beach," IUMA 2.0 allows one to check out unsigned bands by genre and

features on-line ordering of cassettes, CDs and vinyl from the 600 or

so unsigned bands whose music is featured on IUMA. Plus lots of other

cool stuff; check out the site at

http://www.iuma.com/

So right away we found S.F. Chronicle critic Michael Snyder,

who recently raved about the Stone Roses' Fillmore show, glued to his

stool at the bar, entertaining all within earshot with his wry humor

and erudite commentary. You could tell it was Snyder from across the

room thanks to that black beret that sits so jauntily on top of his

head. Naturally the room was filled with IUMA staff, including IUMA

co-founder Jeff Patterson, just back from an expedition to deepest

Australia where he hung with members of Boom Crash Opera. Heyday

Records president Ron Gompertz was there, as was Hot Wired boy

genius Robert Levine, nursing a beer and offering his always deep

insights into the future of web publishing (we took notes), members of

the very cool San Francisco web-zine Buzznet.

At one point the crowd was disrupted when a rowdy motorcycle gang

pushed their way into the club. We thought a fight might occur, but

then the gang leader removed her helmet and it was none other than

Cathi Schorr, Apple's QuickTime "webmaster." Cathi's currently working

on the New York Music Festival site, which resides on the QuickTime

server, and so we filled her in on "Joey Ramone's Unsigned," the July

19 concert taking place at the Continental in New York (hey, what

better place for a plug than in the middle of party coverage?).

There were plenty of members of the media, there to guzzle the free

booze (yep, it was flowing like water; IUMA will be paying off

that bill for the next few years). Most members of IUMA were

attired in smoking jackets. Considering that this was the first time

any had ever put on formal attire, and that this was one of the rare

occasion when they ventured away from their workstations, it was

remarkable that they were holding up and socializing as well as they

were. We did notice several members of IUMA sneaking over to a

terminal they'd installed at the back of the club in order to get a

needed "fix" of on-line activity.

It was a very cool event, and ATN was surprised and pleased to find

itself demoed to the enthusiastic crowd. Lots of fun; wish you were

there.