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Many have crowned Riot Fest as Chicago’s best-curated music festival of the year. The opportunity to see back-to-back sets by Echo & the Bunnymen, funk maestro Bootsy Collins’ Rubber Band and country music legend Merle Haggard was too wonderfully eclectic to miss, crowned shortly afterward by a stage-shredding performance from Iggy Pop.
Boston Calling’s wildly varying lineup tries to be all things to all people and somehow succeeds.
Thanks to Union Tranfer’s translucent acoustics, every one of the jagged, sharp-edged riffs bursting from the guitars of frontman Colin Newman and his younger, newer cohort Matthew Simms came through loud and clear.
Arguably the most death anyone’s ever attempted in music.
Royal Headache blows away a sold out Great Scott.
Accompanied by her multi-instrumentalist husband Kit Hamon, Bombara delivered a 17-song early evening opening set that not only showcased the bulk of her 2015 self-titled third album, but plenty more from 2013’s Raise Your Flag EP and 2010’s Wish I Were You.
Paul McCartney closed the first day of Lollapalooza 2015 with nearly 130 minutes of beloved Beatles, Wings and solo material. He also sprung a few surprises.
Shanghai, China’s Round Eye returned to New York City in support of their stellar self-titled debut album on Ripping released earlier this year.
The folks at NYC Popfest have a reputation for coaxing way-under-the-radar indie pop acts out of the woodwork for their annual shindig. But this criminally unheralded London foursome, playing their first U.S. show, was one of their more unexpected and welcome coups.
Two days, ten acts: thestand4rd, Lucius, Courtney Barnett, Conor Oberst, Belle & Sebastian, The Ghost of a Saber Tooth Tiger, JD McPherson, Seun Kuti & Egypt 80, Babes in Toyland, and Modest Mouse.
H is for Hundred Thousand Fireflies — Prolific writer sings his greatest song at last.
The trio of songs this Brooklyn group showcased from their 2014 debut LP Careers all profited from the forceful foursome’s potent punch and Drew Citron’s spirited, sweetly-lilted singing. But I was equally knocked out by the batch of new and/or unfamiliar songs they played.
A fully arrived performer is greeted by smiling strangers, watched by a few less than billions of eyes.
Let’s count the ways Ben Gibbard is like Neil Tennant. His eternally boyish and sedate voice has logged enough years to be beyond the reach of detractors, at last.
The Pixies had a most triumphant homecoming, Jack Black played Jack Black, and both TV On The Radio and St. Vincent transmitted from an exotic, remote location.
Perhaps Philadelphia won this week’s Twin Cities sweepstakes by hosting The Replacements three days earlier, but BNLX ensured that New York received a similarly raucous and riveting runner-up.
Photos from Day 2 of Boston Calling, featuring My Morning Jacket, Ben Harper and St. Vincent
The Spring edition Boston Calling kicks off with a shimmying set by Beck and a slightly dozy performance by Tame Impala.
With temperatures hovering around 0°F, New London, CT chanteuse Martin ensured that this show was worth the wearying weeknight trek and fleeting flirtations with frostbite.
I know it’s only April and it snowed a little today but it still feels like summer because Best Coast just played my town.
Hearing that Kasso’s victim kept insisting, while being stabbed to death, that he loved his mother, is heartbreaking, and no less so because I can imagine myself as a young man somewhere in this story, myself.
The entire production was rather like a stoned symphony, with Kilbey as the ringmaster.
The Chesterfield, NJ foursome played a blowout, 18-song opening set, including a handful from their fantastic new 2014 fifth album Captains of Industry, Captains of War.
If this show at this long-running beachfront venue was not quite as epic in scope as their October 2011 show at NYC’s Irving Plaza, when they tore through their 1977 debut Damned Damned Damned and 1980 fourth LP The Black Album in their entireties, it was still just as scorching.
By showcasing four up-and-coming, under-the-radar bands – all of which had new releases reviewed by energetic editor Jack Rabid in the mag’s last two issues – the night was as equally entertaining as The Big Takeover’s blowout, 15-band, two-day 30th anniversary festival at Brooklyn’s Bell House.
Compared to their triumphant free show at Brooklyn’s Prospect Park the previous June, the Dum Dums’ follow-up NYC gig at this spacious Williamsburg venue/restaurant/bowling alley was a more low-key affair. But it was still heaps of fun, not least because it took place on the night before Halloween.
This Toronto five-piece whipped through a short but sweet set, hitting every one of the their shimmering, surf-splashed self-titled debut LP’s songs save its closer “Red Planet.”
If I’d designed the variables and controls myself, I couldn’t have come up with any better experiment to discover a general principle of aging among touring artists.
Since it opened, Beast of Bourbon in Bed-Stuy has proved to be not only an enticing neighborhood bar, but a great venue for events as well, so, logically, it was the spot of choice for New Year’s Eve, with no knowledge of what would be in store.
Poi Dog Pondering recently wrapped a four-night stand at City Winery Chicago in support of new project Everybody’s Got a Star. Rock photographer Philamonjaro was on hand to document night three.
While the long trek from New Jersey to Queens during Friday rush hour was a drag, and the outdoor stadium’s 10 o’clock curfew left the band scrambling for time, this show by these reunited Minneapolis marvels more than exceeded my expectations.
This free mid-summer River Rocks soiree was a Murderer’s Row of Fanclub favorites, all dripping with their trademark three-part harmonies and Byrds-ian melodies.
Did the Welsh settle America? Find out what Prince Madog and John Evans have been up to.
In which Segall christens the remodeled Turf’s most distinctive and enduring feature and re-inaugurates the club as vital.
The very roots of metal, on display in two different forms.
“Music is just because you have to have it,” says the songwriter.
Van Etten has also grown better at projecting her voice to fill larger venues in a way that doesn’t seem forced but more emotionally in depth in a way that makes the songs greater than ever. When she thanks her audience for coming, it’s just as heartfelt.
Like he did playing with X a few blocks away at the Wonder Bar in December 2012, Doe still sounds every bit as revitalized as the formerly decrepit, once again hopping Asbury Park beachfront.
After seeing this ethereal Brooklyn five-piece twice before at mammoth-sized Manhattan venues, it was nice to finally get to see them up close and personal at this much smaller, superb-sounding space, doing one of their own headlining shows.
Has an artist ever played such a wide selection of her back catalog, containing so many words and lines of melody, on one tour?
With 17 of the night’s 18 songs coming from the Glasgow band’s last three (of five) excellent albums – including seven from their newest LP Desire Lines – this was an embarrassment of riches.
British folkie Garrie was only allotted 30 minutes, so this set opening for Dutch baroque popster/psych rocker Gardner couldn’t match his hour-plus long headlining show last year at Joe’s Pub. But this was still worth venturing across two rivers from New Jersey!
Hot on the tail of their Southeastern US tour, World War IX returned to New York with a vengeance.
Ecstatically opposed to a high concept approach, but with visual sense, and moments.
This Newcastle, UK quintet played a terrific show, even if the set’s inclusion of ten new LP songs undercut some of the band’s typical rapid-fire, crackling pace.