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The Big Takeover Issue #91

Marc Scarano

Marc Scarano is a musician/writer/medical videographer who lives in Burlington, VT. He has been writing for since 2010 and is most happy sitting in front of his turntable. Marc is active in the northern Vermont music scene with his band Black Rabbit and has written online music reviews for Seven Days, Vermont’s alternative news weekly. He was once interviewed by The Wall Street Journal about his Big Takeover piece comparing Lauren Hill to Axl Rose. When he’s not listening to, making, or writing about music, he enjoys biking along Lake Champlain, videography, and reading.

Best Coast live at Higher Ground Ballroom S. Burlington, VT April 22, 2015

Best Coast with Swale - Higher Ground Ballroom (S. Burlington, VT) - April 22, 2015

24 April 2015

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.

Phil Yates & The Affiliates - No Need To Beg (Almost Halloween Time Records)

Phil Yates & The Affiliates - No Need To Beg (Almost Halloween Time Records)

23 April 2015

Phil’s bio states that he is “too folky for the rockers and too rocky for the folkers”, but since putting together the Affiliates he’s had both feet firmly planted in the rock camp.

Benny The Jet Rodriguez - Home.Run. (Recess Records)

Benny The Jet Rodriguez - Home. Run. (Recess Records)

11 September 2014

This self-proclaimed “pot punk” band’s debut Home. Run. is a solid slab of indie fuzz pop that is unsophisticated in the best possible way, and eminently listenable to boot.

Pat Todd & The Rankoutsiders - 14th & Nowhere - Rankoutsider Records

Pat Todd & The Rankoutsiders - 14th & Nowhere (Rankoutsider Records)

21 August 2014

This record was made to be cranked at juke joints, hoedowns and keg parties. It’s the sound of a bar band reaching peak velocity.

Thurston Moore ticket stub, January 29, 2012, First Unitarian Church Burlington, VT

Thurston Moore - First Unitarian Church (Burlington, VT) - Sunday, January 29, 2012

30 January 2012

He played a six-string and a twelve-string, both acoustic, and was joined by a second acoustic guitar, drums, violin, and most surprisingly, a harp.

The Joy Formidable, 11.17.11 at Higher Ground VT

The Joy Formidable - Higher Ground (S. Burlington, VT) - Thursday, November 17, 2011

27 November 2011

Now I know why they named their album The Big Roar- because that’s what they sounded like, a three-person post-punk whirling dervish of a band.

Jeff Mangum concert ticket, August 8, 2011, Burlington, VT

Jeff Mangum - First Unitarian Church (Burlington, VT) - Monday, August 8, 2011

9 August 2011

What better venue to see the man play than a church?

Dweezil Zappa, Zappa Plays Zappa, Higher Ground VT 8.3.11

Zappa Plays Zappa - Higher Ground (S. Burlington, VT) - Wednesday August 3, 2011

4 August 2011

Not only do they do faithful versions of Zappa’s music, but Dweezil manages to recreate Frank’s guitar tone to an astonishing degree.

Keith Morris Off! 242 Main Burlington, VT

OFF! - 242 Main (Burlington, VT) - Monday, June 20, 2011

22 June 2011

These punk rock veterans made it look so easy, flailing and headbanging away while playing some of the tightest, heaviest and catchiest music that I’ve heard in years.

New Original Sonic Sound album cover

The New Original Sonic Sound - S/T (Jackpot)

27 April 2011

The production is appropriately dirty and analog for a tribute to The Sonics, and all the essential elements of the music are in place: organ, guitar, saxophone, and gritty blues howl.

The Pixies at The Metropolis, Montreal, QC 4.14.11

The Pixies - The Metropolis (Montreal, QC) - April 14, 2011

16 April 2011

When Kim Deal played the opening notes of “Debaser” the place just exploded, and the intensity did not go down until the house lights went up almost two hours later.

New York Dolls Dancing Backward In High Heels album art

New York Dolls – Dancing Backward in High Heels (429)

6 April 2011

They may not sound like how you remember them, but the New York Dolls are back with the first essential summer record of 2011.

Mike Watt Hyphenated-Man cover art

Mike Watt - Hyphenated-Man (Clenched Wrench)

23 March 2011

With inspiration from an unlikely source, Mike Watt started a record label and put out his magnum opus.

Lauryn Hill - Higher Ground (S. Burlington, VT) - Sunday, December 19, 2010

20 December 2010

I came to the realization at the show that Lauryn Hill is the Axl Rose of the hip-hop world.

Monster Magnet Mastermind

Monster Magnet - Mastermind (Napalm Records)

10 November 2010

It has a big, fat bass sound that stands out on nearly every track, rivaling the guitars for dominance and giving the album coherence.

Ike Willis Project Object Higher Ground VT 10.31.10

Project/Object - Higher Ground Showcase Lounge (S. Burlington, VT) - Sunday, October 31, 2010

1 November 2010

Dweezil’s got the DNA, but Project/Object has the Zappa alumni: Ike Willis and Ray White are in the band, and their enthusiasm was infectious.

The Black Crowes Higher Ground VT 9.17.09

The Black Crowes - Higher Ground (S. Burlington, VT) - October 19 & 20, 2010

21 October 2010

It’s always fun to see a band two nights in a row. The extra night allowed them to spread their wings and play songs from all of their records.

Death Bobby and Dannis Hackney Higher Ground VT

Death with Rough Francis - Higher Ground (S. Burlington, VT) - Thursday, October 7, 2010

10 October 2010

“The story of Death is the story of two cities- Detroit and Burlington”, said Bobby Hackney, which is why Burlington was lucky enough to be one of the few cities to witness Death live.

Doug Martsch Built To Spill Higher Ground VT

Built To Spill - Higher Ground (S. Burlington, VT) - Sunday, October 3 2010

4 October 2010

The three-guitar arrangement was not overkill at all. Each player carved out his own space within the framework of the songs.

Mike Gent of The Figgs

Mike Gent of The Figgs

6 September 2010

This year The Figgs released their tenth studio album and toured as Graham Parker’s backing band. Mike talks about life with the band, songwriting, and the man who fights himself.

The Sword Warp Riders album art

The Sword - Warp Riders (Kemado Records)

25 August 2010

This record is bound to increase The Sword’s profile and expand their audience into hard rock territory, but not at the expense of the headbangers who have been fans from the beginning.

Manassas, Down The Road, front cover

Manassas - Down The Road (Atlantic)

8 August 2010

Last weekend I found a hidden gem for two bucks! For the price of this record I could have only downloaded the first two tracks from iTunes.

Dave Mustaine of Megadeth

The Big Four Satellite Broadcast from The Sonisphere Festival – Levski Stadium (Sofia, Bulgaria) - June 22, 2010

26 July 2010

This sounded like such a cool idea that I had to go: a satellite broadcast of The Big Four of 80’s thrash — Metallica, Slayer, Megadeth and Anthrax — beamed down live to movie theaters around the world from the Sonisphere Festival in Sofia, Bulgaria.