Friday, January 20, 2012

Kendrick Lamar at Beauty Ballroom TONIGHT!

I included it in my ticket round-up post at the beginning of the month but January 20th really snuck-up on me. I didn't realize that tonight was the night to catch Kendrick Lamar at the brand-new Beauty Ballroom over on East Riverside. Kendrick's 2011 album, Section.80 was released digitally and made a lot of year-end lists in December. Hailing from Compton, Lamar is carrying on a tradition of great hip-hop and at a concert last August Dr. Dre, Snoop Dogg, and Game pronounced him the new prince of west coast hip-hop. If you didn't catch Kendrick Lamar's album last year you can check it out on Spotify. He can also be heard guesting on Drake's latest LP, Take Care on the, "Buried Alive Interlude." It's not too late to get tickets to tonight's show at the Beauty Ballroom they'll be waiting for you at will-call.

Kendrick Lamar - ADHD video via YouTube

Apparently Kendrick Lamar is a huge fan of 2Pac and usually dedicates at least 10 minutes of every show to him and his music so, if you head out to tonight's show you can expect to hear that. Also, look for Kendrick's studio LP, Good Kid in a Mad City at some point this year.

Kendrick Lamar - HiiiPower video via YouTube

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Thursday, January 19, 2012

Review: Cass McCombs

Last Saturday night there were a lot of great shows in Austin to choose from. All the kids were over at the Mohawk for the Starfucker show, meanwhile the grown-up were down the street watching Cass McCombs on the inside stage. I wasn't sure how full the show was going to be but I was pleased to walk into a completely packed room just as support act Frank Fairfield was starting his old-timey, one man folk show. The audience was very attentive and Frank put on a good performance. It wasn't really my thing but the crowd erupted in cheers and applause at the end of every song so, clearly, has some fans in Austin.

Cass McCombs started about 10 minutes later than he was scheduled for, with a full backing band that included a steel guitar/guitar, bass, keys and drums. I spotted Erica from the Heartless Bastard enjoying the show along with lots of other Austin scenesters. Cass opened with Equinox from his 2007 album PREfection triggering lots of hooting and hollering from the audience. I, for one, didn't expect to hear an older song so soon in the set but for Cass McCombs fans, that song is a classic and a great opening number. The set culled tracks from Cass' full catalog, including his latest single Bradley Manning.

Cass McCombs - Bradley Manning via Soundcloud

Overall, I had a great experience at the show. The crowd was rapt and mostly attentive throughout the performance and I found myself really paying attention to the lyrical content of the songs. Cass McCombs' songs exist in their own universe and when you see him perform live it's, somewhat, like living in a David Lynch film. The mood of the songs is much thicker in person than on record and they evoke a very dream-like feeling. I hate to try to pin down the music with a genre because it straddles several but Saturday night I was thinking that there was a psychedelic-country-soul thing going on and that seemed quite fitting at the moment.

The set closed with one of the greatest songs of 2011, County Line and I could help thinking that it sounded like a soul record through an American filter. I would love to hear an artist like Charles Bradley re-imagine the tune to enhance it's soul-music qualities. Cass McCombs is still on tour through March so, if you're reading this from outside of Austin you should head out to the following places to have your own Lynch-ian moment with Cass and Co.

  • 01-20 Saxaphaw, NC - Haw River Ballroom *
  • 01-21 Baltimore, MD - Ottobar *
  • 01-22 Philadelphia, PA - Kung Fu Necktie *
  • 01-25 New York, NY - Bowery Ballroom *
  • 01-26 Montreal, Quebec - Il Motore *
  • 01-27 Toronto, Ontario - The Garrison *
  • 01-28 Detroit, MI - Pike Room *
  • 01-29 Chicago, IL - Lincoln Hall *
  • 01-30 Madison, WI - High Noon *
  • 02-01 Minneapolis, MN - 7th Street Entry *
  • 02-02 Omaha, NE - The Waiting Room *
  • 02-03 Denver, CO - Hi-Dive *
  • 02-04 Salt Lake City, UT - Kilby Court *
  • 03-05 Manchester, England - Band on the Wall
  • 03-07 Liverpool, England - Leaf Cafe Bold St.
  • 03-09 London, England - Union Chapel
^ with White Magic
* with Frank Fairfield

Cass McCombs - County Line video via YouTube

Charles Bradley - The World (Is Going Up in Flames) video via YouTube

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Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Interview: Twin Sister

Long Island indie-popsters Twin Sister will be here in Austin at the end of the month and tickets are almost sold-out. Normally, I do these preview posts closer to the actual show date but I want you to be at the Mohawk on the 29th so, I'm posting about the show today. Neo-whiteboy-indie-soul group, Ava Luna will be playing the support slot so I encourage you to arrive early and catch both bands because they're both fucking awesome. That's right, I said it.

Ava Luna - Clips video via YouTube

I had the chance to send some questions to Andrea from Twin Sister, which you can find below the break.

Twin Sister - Kimmi In a Rice Field video via YouTube

  • What are some other monikers TWIN SISTER tried out before choosing TWIN SISTER?
  • Vampires, Dreaming Kids
  • If the members of TWIN SISTER were to choose non-musical professions, what might those be?
  • I would work in an Aquarium or be an Art Director.
  • What band names would have decorated your notebooks/lockers/bumpers in High School?
  • Smashing Pumpkins, NIN, Björk, Space Robot Scientists. I think I use to do this a lot more in Middle school and like, the beginning of High School. Then I started tacking up flyers for our local acoustic shows.
  • Did you grow up in a musical house-hold?  If so, what music were/are your parents really into?
  • When I was really little and my parents were still into their early 20s, my father used to play guitar with his friends and my mom was really into dance. So, I had Pink Floyd, Blondie, Bob Marley, Neil Young, Michael Jackson, Salsa, Merengue, Madonna.
  • What are some of your choices for a "guilty pleasure" playlist?
    • Katy Perry - "Last Friday Night"
    • Michelle Branch - "All You Wanted"
    • Ne-Yo - "Closer"
    • Vanessa Carlton - "A Thousand Miles"
    • Katy Perry - "Teenage Dream"
    • Vanessa Carlton - "Ordinary Day"
    • Ke$ha - "TiK ToK"
  • What have you been listening to lately?  Do you have any favorite LP's from 2011?
    • Roy Orbison, the "Crying" cassette
    • The Best of Bowie cassette
    • Kate Bush, "The Whole Story" cassette

    I think my favorite from 2011 is Björk's "Biophilia." So far, I haven't been listening to enough new music, just old music. I have to wait until this new music is old.
  • What were some of your favorite films that you saw last year?
  • Harry Potter and the Deathly Hollows Part 2 and The Borrower Arriety
      The Borrower Arriety - Official English Trailer video via YouTube
  • If you were to make the analogy of band as a family,what roles would your various members play?  Who are the parents in the van?
  • Dev is dad that pays the bills and makes sure that the modem is still giving the house internet. I'm (Andrea) the mother I guess, too busy with make up and hair to pay attention to my kids, but I'll still take them to the doctor. Eric is my favorite son, little stinky brat that does everything right and kisses mummy's buns. Bryan is my stoner son, that is locked in his room listening to music, being all creative and having a good time with his friends and stealing mama's liquor! Gabel is a friend of my son, and I'm sleeping with him behind my husband's back.
  • What's the biggest/most common myth about touring?
  • It isn't like a road trip, it's fun and work. I never have enough energy, time or money to really enjoy every place I visit. I still haven't spent more than a few hours in Paris. WTH? If you want to become an alcoholic it's perfect! I hate paying for drinks when I come home.
  • If you could collaborate with any artist(s), in any medium, in any time period, who would it be, when and what would you be working on?
  • 1940s, Walt Disney, Cartoon production cells.

Twin Sister - Bad Street video via YouTube

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