Archive for ‘Live music’

July 23, 2013

Symbiotic Bliss: Deafheaven and Marriages Live

deafheaven tourSargent House continues to make me feel as if there’s hope out there. I had the joy of seeing one of my favorite drummers, Chris Common, play with the band Marriages for this tour. Then you add the amazing talent of Kerry and George from Deafheaven, who headlined the tour, and a beautiful, symbiotic relationship in the most simplest terms is translated onstage. The lineup took me in places where music should: Outside of your comfort level. How these two got paired together is an enigma of the greatest sorts; truly genuine music from extremely talented people.

I’ll open with Marriages. The two main band members, Emma and Greg, who gained popularity in Red Sparowes, continued on and have recorded their debut album, Kitsune. Greg and Emma are two people who just, simply put, play extremely well together. Emma’s hauntingly beautiful voice and even equally beautiful guitar playing have such an emotional quality, you feel every note. Greg’s synth tracks add little flourishes to his solid bass playing that propels every song. This is my second time seeing them live and the first time Dave Turncratz from Russian Circles supported them on drums. As I mentioned, Chris Common went out with them on this tour and held everything together perfectly.

Now for the headliners, who went on tour supporting their second release, Sunbather, out on Deathwish. Deafheaven has evolved in ways everyone thought unimaginable. A new era to the classic thoughts on black metal, Deafheaven draws inspiration from U2 and Morrissey among many other bands not in the genre. That is what sets them apart. They weave a complex web of soft and fast passages. The journey taken is fought and won with every song. The song “The Pecan Tree” is most likely their finest song, opening with pure energy and moving you in so many directions. The title track proves how this band has progressed musically and emotionally as a band.

July 9, 2012

New From Cincinnati: Getting Ready for Bunbury

Greetings Hearingade readers! It’s a pleasure to meet you; my name is Stacey and I will be your tour guide through the musical happenings in the Cincinnati area and beyond.

If you really want to be clichéd about it, I guess you could say that I am a long-time reader, first-time writer for this blog. I even feature in the background of some of Amber’s pieces, like the lame kid in the school play who gets cast as the tree; such as the New Year’s Ultraparty, which was every bit the drunken and exciting delight she described.

I’m here today to tell you a bit about Cincinnati’s upcoming Bunbury Music Festival, the latest in the exciting musical activity happening in the Queen City. The three-day festival, taking place July 13-15, is brought to you by Bill Dondabedian, co-founder of Midpoint Music Festival and former event manager for Fountain Square, and if you’ve ever been to MPMF or hit up the Square during one of their multiple summer concert options in recent years, you know this festival has some serious promise.

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June 28, 2012

Video Raid: Brandon Schott, ‘This Is Home’

You may have seen my review for Brandon Schott‘s most recent album, 13 Satellites, here last year. I was especially drawn to his tune “This Is Home,” which sparked both delight and serenity in my soul.

In “This is Home,” Schott waxes carefree about a rundown house, unpaid bills and the love that makes it all worthwhile — like a “Danny’s Song: Part II.”

Schott sought out people in his geographical vicinity earlier this year who would let him barge into their houses with with his cameras and instruments and friendly smile to make a music video for the song. It resulted in a quaint and heartwarming view of what all these strangers call home, and basically epitomizes what makes Schott such an endearing musician. He’s genuine, optimistic and down-to-earth. It shows in his  music, it shows in his face, and in the faces of the people who appear in the video.

Catch Schott’s debut appearance in Washington state with a Hearingade sponsored set at Wenatchee’s Caffè Mela June 30th. Wenatchee’s own The Bloody Oranges open the show at 8 p.m. Tickets are on sale now for $12 at ticketfly.com, or will be available at the door for $15.

February 7, 2012

Review: Blvd Park, ‘The Sound’

I feel like the vaudeville gypsy caravan has rolled into town, much to my delight. Seattle-based six-piece Blvd Park vaunts countless acoustic instrumentations, including guitar, mandolin, trumpet, accordion, banjo, upright bass, and tambourine.  The band’s versatile horizontal structure features multiple lead singers/songwriters (every member sings at some point), always weaving dense, varied male-female harmonies.  This “spaghetti western” acoustic ensemble’s formula and technology is simple, yet they achieve complex results, incorporating gospel, country, doo-wop, jazz, and klezmer elements.  I just don’t have enough eclectic adjective glitter to sprinkle about this bunch.

The Sound, their sophomore album, is equally multifaceted.  Like the band’s California desert “browngrass” roots and named after the watery basins of their adopted Northwest, some tracks are sparse, desolate and hauntingly mournful, others undulating and warm.  The upbeat tracks are downright triumphant and bawdy and joyful, and others build slow anticipation and explode into celebration.  There are toe-tappers, slow-swayers, and wrist-cutters.  You will simultaneously fancy yourself lonesome cowpoke, dastardly outlaw, and cheeky burlesque star.  In a good way.

BLVD Park CD Release Poster 2/9/12

BLVD Park are performers in the truest sense: not afraid to get a little silly, they operate with capable fluidity but maintain a sense of playful carnival-esque flair. They aren’t afraid of vocal ad-libs, fun whistle parts, trumpet flourishes, a capella duets, or failure.  They careen tightly around the turn of gimmicky vs. genuine, but their sincerity always comes across.  Trust me, you’ll enjoy this music just as much as they are enjoying making it.

The Sound is available for download and listening at http://blvdpark.bandcamp.com/.  Check out their CD release show this Thursday, February 9, at the Tractor Tavern in Seattle.

For more details, see: https://www.facebook.com/events/270681189662567/.

January 10, 2012

Boyfrndz: I Saw Them Live, You Can Hear Them Here!

I like genre bending bands, so naturally when I entered the doors to Red7 in Austin for New Year’s Eve I was not only excited to see my favorite band Russian Circles play, I was excited to see the opening band, too. I had heard very little of the them prior to the show, but what I did hear I wanted more.

Boyfrndz is a high-energy band with not-too-subtle attributes in different genres and styles. How unfair of me right? This is just one of those bands you don’t want to label with technical mumbo-jumbo. One moment you’re caught in the hook with eerie vocals, bobbing your head, and the next a complicated guitar riff slams and faster-than-light drums hit you in the back of the head. If music is a journey, Boyfrndz is weaving in and out the back roads on a schizophrenic highway. The drums and guitar complement each other well, weaving in and out from one another with a chaotic sense of push and pull, while the bass stands heavy and anchors it all together, keeping a solid yet technical foundation under your feet.

The bands consists of Aaron Perez on drums, Scott Martin on vocals/guitar and Joseph Raines on bass. Their self-titled album is available here for free download or you can order a pretty cool recycled original art CD for $8.

Boyfrndz Twitter

December 27, 2011

It Was The Best Party Ever: With The Appleseed Collective!

As much as I hate to be the girl who continuously talks about how rad she is, I have to admit that my friends and I throw the best parties. It really only started recently. Partly, this was because I feel like the transition into adulthood means that instead of getting trashed on your friend’s back porch nightly, you start doing things like throwing dinner parties and other fanciness. Another reason for my increase in ridiculously legit parties is that I met Nora. Nora is basically my party-throwing soul mate. She’s every bit as enthusiastic as I am, a great cook, and an all around awesome babe with access to a big enough house to cram all of our super cool friends inside of. Every time Nora and I have set out to have a shindig, our social circle pulls out all the stops for a raucous, fun-filled, and surprisingly adult evening of food, drinks, and music.

Last week, Nora and I threw together a ramshackle White Elephant party that turned out ridiculously well-put-together despite the fact that we barely did any party prep. In the evening, we made trillions of cookies, wrapped presents, and decorated the tree. By the time the guests had mostly all arrived, there were bunches of mystery presents under the tree (ranging from a badminton set to a really legit hat that I got but my best friend stole from me) and people were at an appropriate level of fuck-upped-ness for some legendary stuff to happen.

And that’s when The Appleseed Collective showed up and played a show at our party right next to the dang Christmas tree!

The Appleseed Collective – Sugar Cut My Teeth

The weird thing about being friends with The Appleseed Collective is that they’re genuinely one of my favorite bands because they’re just preternaturally talented. It’s strange being friends with one of your favorite bands, but it’s mostly just really awesome because it imbues your life with a sweet sense of awesomeness at all times. I’ve got a lot of friends in bands, but there are only so many whose music that I actually, legitimately love. Appleseed is just so good that it’s impossible to not be charmed by their d.i.y. gypsy jazz style.

Nearly every member of Appleseed contributes equal parts to the songs, with guitarist Andrew Brown, bassist Sophie Tulip, and multi-instrumentalist Brandon Worder taking turns on lead vocals. Brown belts out songs with the detached grit of a young Justin Townes Earle while playing guitar like some sort of Delta blues man. It’s sick. Worder plays violin and mandolin so well that I’m pretty sure Will Sheff would recruit him for Okkervil River, if given the opportunity. And did you listen to “Sugar Cut My Teeth”? Sophie Tulip sings like a sweet baby angel. Imagine that song being played next to a freakin’ Christmas tree with twenty-five of your closest friends all singing some harmonies. It was so magical!

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