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Shara Nova performed new My Brightest Diamond material during an opening set for the fifth of seven seasonal Gezelligheid concerts by Andrew Bird. Photos by Alec Basse.
Both the lyrics and the song structures on The Smile’s 2022 album A Light for Attracting Attention go places that, if they were bodies, would be strange contortionists. One might find yourself wondering if a chord progression can actually evolve like that the way you’d wonder if a knee can bend in a certain direction.
On the third and final day of 2022 Hardly Strictly Bluegrass, Danielle Ponder emerged as one the main highlights of the festival, delivering a blistering set of soul music.
A beautiful Saturday greeted the fans on the second day of 2022 Hardly Strictly Bluegrass festival in Golden Gate Park, featuring everyone from the Mekons to Elvis Costello.
It was hard not to feel nostalgic about this year’s return of Hardly Strictly Bluegrass, September 30th through October 2nd.
Day 2 of Mosswood Meltdown saw the idyllic calm of Sunday afternoon quickly ripped to pieces with punk and stoner rock.
On October 8th and 9th, Halloween Meltdown was back at Mosswood Park in Oakland, offering up two days of punk, stoner, and garage rock under sunny East Bay skies.
It’s impossible to be unhappy while listening to Alvvays. There’s something so sincere and also buoyant about lead singer Molly Rankin’s vocals that reassure a human in their most melancholic of moments that everything is going to be alright. It’s not merely catchy pop songs she sings but lullabies to get you through your darkest days.
Spooky metal for Halloween! Iron Maiden brought its Legacy of the Beast tour to United Center in Chicago, IL.
Any music festival that had risen from a vague idea, one drunken night in the back room of a pub, into a five-day, “in the city” style celebration involving eight venues and over 60 original bands and which had negotiated floods, recessions, lockdowns and the growing apathy towards those who chose to write their songs, should be the stuff of legend.
Despite forecasts of an inbound storm that threatened to disrupt Nine Inch Nails’ headlining set, Chicago received sunny end-of-summer weather during most of the final day at Riot Fest. Jeff Elbel’s coverage includes The Linda Lindas, Jawbox, Lunachicks, Jimmy Eat World, and Sleater-Kinney.
Days 1 and 2 of Riot Fest 2022.
Unlike larger, more prodigiously-attended Real Estate shows, this more intimate setting allowed one to focus attentively on Courtney’s exquisite singing and guitar playing, and to better appreciate his delectable songwriting flair.
The Big Takeover’s Pre-Coverage of Lollapalooza 2022 in Chicago, IL.
It goes without saying that The Roots are an absolute legend and they proved on top of their game. It was especially wonderful to see Questlove play drums again as well as to have “Damon “Tuba Gooding Jr.Bryson playing sousaphone, adding another layer to their songs and live set that was super animated! Captain Kirk Douglas was also hamming it up on guitar as usual. It was a fantastic way to close out the weekend!
People sometimes say that Rome wasn’t built in a day and that might be because of the complexity of all the layers upon layers of city built by human hands throughout its history. These are humans who bled and suffered yet still managed to create something that will stand the test of time and be a witness to what humans can actually achieve at their absolute height. The very same accomplishment can be applied to the songs by the band Low and it would be best if you experience their multifaceted layers as you would The Colosseum : in a state of perpetual awe.
The energy the chord progressions take on is incredible enough to write a dissertation on how feedback can evolve into something that feels a little dangerous and also a little healing at the same time. This time around seemed even more precious because, let’s be clear, in a pandemic like this touring isn’t easy. Yet, if there’s one thing to live through a pandemic for, it’s seeing Spiritualized play again.
Guided By Voices storm the capital in preparation for the release of yet another strong record.
The Just Like Heaven festival convened at the famed Rose Bowl on May 21, and the Big T stalkerazzi was out in force to bring you every second of the sordid action!
Bob Mould brings stripped down but nonetheless provocative sound to Berkeley with supporting act H.C. McEntire.
Spiritualized live performance in Tucson, AZ
It was no surprise the devoted audience knew all the song by heart, even when Present Tense was just released last month. Just about every song in their catalog could easily be a pleasing radio friendly hit. “Right Track / Wrong Man,” “Give it Hell,” and “In the Eyes of Our Love” are the kinds of songs that have the sort of light-hearted sensibility to elevate anyone out of a dark funk and came off especially well in concert.
The way the intensity was built up really brought to home the fact that Hana Vu is hopefully on the verge of what is to be a long an artistic career and is as genuine as they come.
The band took to the Club Congress stage with Mwondela donning one of the band’s iconic chitenge cloth hats (initially designed to curb stage fright in the 1970s). Jagari (nicknamed after the Rolling Stones’ Mick Jagger), now 70, was in fine form both vocally and physically, dancing around the stage, high-fiving the crowd, and handing out a cowbell for people to contribute rhythm.
The Isle of Wight duo expanded to a five person rock band in concert and played an exciting 16 song set.
There have been a few Music Frozen Dancing events when it is has been even unseasonably warm and the outside heat lamps didn’t even really need to be on. But, there’s always that Music Frozen Dancing day temperature the matches the February date perfectly. And, who would hold a festival outdoors in Chicago at the end of February anyway? Luckily, the same people who know the necessity of booking fantastic bands that bring the energy. You can’t get frostbite or die of hypothermia if you’re too busy dancing, right…..right?
Sometimes, it takes a single voice to evoke a mood. Slowly drifting across an audience of connected strangers and lingering in all the cracks between them. Then, suddenly a keyboard comes in and then a guitar, bass, and drums all connected by the grounding melodies of the vocals. In the sense of a shared experience, fans feel the intensity build in a way that strengthens the pieces overall. Yet, in the building is a strange sort of reckoning with the way the lullabies soothe.
While Williams dominated the stage throughout the set with a very lovely glam style and her luscious folk vocals, she also provided a safe space for the sold out audience to be in the moment enjoying the wonder of the songs.
Frontman Papa Emeritus IV (Tobias Forge) delivered a high-caliber set of gothic evil with a wink and a tongue planted firmly in cheek.
On Thursday night in Idaho, America’s finest prog-rock band finally unveiled selections from Fear Inoculum to a packed arena on the third night of their long-awaited tour behind the record of the same name.
“What is this drummer guy doing with an orchestra?” said former Police percussionist Stewart Copeland.
The weekend of October 16th and 17th saw the return of live music to Mosswood Park in Oakland with the 2021 Halloween Meltdown, hosted by John Waters. Fans, many in costume, crowded into the park’s concrete bowl to mosh, crowd surf, or just sit and take in the 17 bands who played over the weekend.
No worries about Nada Surf’s ability to deliver the same kind of high quality live show that urges devoted fans to try to catch multiple tour stops. In fact, their over 2 hour set surely must have left the audience satiated and joyous.
Friday night’s performance by Gojira marked the first occasion on which the massively successful quartet played in proper support of Fortitude, one of the year’s best albums in rock music writ large.
Days after the release of MUNA’s “Silk Chiffon”, their collaboration with Phoebe Bridgers, they took the stage in Pittsburgh shift attention from the doom and gloom of a pandemic, and remember – in their own words – “life’s so fun.”
The music and sights did the talking during the tightly paced, theatrically produced show. As a parting blessing, Cooper exclaimed, “It’s very close to Halloween, so may all your nightmares come true.” Photos by Philamonjaro.
Despite controversial opinions and provocative statements offstage, Morrissey needn’t have questioned his fans’ ardor for his music.