The Get Togethers – Home As In Houston album review

Great music can help us through some truly trying times. Even in some of our bleakest moments, having such a pure emotional outlet to hold onto can act as a sort of beacon, illuminating a strength in ourselves we never knew existed. This acts inversely as well. As musicians create, they pull from within themselves to overcome immense existential trials.

Such is the case for Nashville, Tennessee-based The Get Togethers’ debut record, Home As In Houston. Released on September 24th, the group marries indie rock and pop with a finely tuned ear. On top of tight musicianship and infectious melodies, Bethany Gray Frazier’s tumult of an adolescence is the basis of the entire LP.

The listener is taken back to the year 2007. Then seventeen, Bethany Gray becomes romantically involved with one of her teachers. The police investigations and court hearings that would follow alienated her from her peers, an almost impossibly real turn of events that led to a devastating high-speed car collision, marking the end of this chapter of her life. Each track on Home As In Houston is named for one month of the year, describing the events that transpired in each month. Acting almost as a diary, the album trudges through heartbreak, loss and desolation, narrated by Gray Frazier herself. The lyrics are dense, with an overwhelming capacity for lovelorn catharsis, but are delivered plainly. It is devastatingly easy to feel exactly what she feels, becoming involved in the story.

Even aside from the loose narrative and obvious thematic elements, Home As In Houston stands strong musically. The standard rock outfit matches the tone of the lyrics almost effortlessly, with practically unforgettable hooks and driving choruses, both complimenting Bethany Gray Frazier’s vocal work and carving out its own path just beneath her dreamy croon.

With the release of the Home As In Houston LP now under their belts, The Get Togethers are planning a full US tour for the fall of 2013. The single, “June,” can be streamed on the band’s SoundCloud page while the record hits digital and select brick-and-mortar stores. The Get Togethers have truly set a high bar for themselves and their brand of indie pop.

Deluxe – Daniel EP review

The music that they make seems to be doing what it can to battle the bare-bones web presence of French band Deluxe. Signed to French label Chinese Man Records, you will quickly fall in love with their fun sound. The mix of jazz, funk and hip-hop feels very current, and laced with samples, swingy melodies and catchy beats, you’ll find that their music is at once original and easy to listen to.

The five-piece outfit just released a four song EP following their 2011 effort, “Polishing Peanuts,” and ahead of a record set to come out in September. It consists of the title track, “Daniel,” the catchy and unapologetically feminine “Bleed On” and “Pretty Flaws,” which is also remixed as the fourth track. All in all, it’s an enjoyable 15 minutes or so. But, in addition to that, it’s demonstrative of the band’s impressive range.

“Daniel” features the British-born MC Youthstar, who is arguably best part of the track. He provides the introduction, as well as primary rap verse, welcoming listeners to “the Deluxe Family Show.”

That’s not to say that the verse and soulful chorus from the band’s vocalist Liliboy are not worth hearing as well. It’s easy to see where comparisons to Amy Winehouse could be made—except Winehouse couldn’t rap. The juxtaposition between the two gives the song dimension. The track is catchy and danceable, and with a piano introduction like that, it wouldn’t be surprising if they opened their album with it as well.

Next up is “Bleed On,” a soulful and upbeat song that laments the female affliction of PMS, among other issues. True to the group’s character, it has a fun introduction, catchy chorus and killer horn interlude that makes it impossible to forget. It’s clear from the subject matter that they’ve got a sense of humor, but don’t worry guys: the song demonstrates musical prowess more than it exposes you to gross girl problems.

Last is “Pretty Flaws,” an understated and slow track with an R&B feeling. It builds to something really beautiful by the end, and even holds up when remixed by Chinese Man—who added a dubstep beat and a few dozen samples but didn’t change the tempo much. The softness enables the listener to really understand the underlying talent here. The song is just pretty, without the carnival of background noises the group is typically known for, and it works just fine.

Deluxe has a busy summer ahead of them, playing a number of European festivals in preparation for the release of their first full-length album. If these three songs are any indication, we should be excited for what’s to come in the fall.

Bonnaroo 2013

For four days in the June heat, a farm in Manchester, Tennessee was transformed from wide open fields into the seventh largest city in Tennessee overnight for Bonnaroo Arts & Music Festival. Artists as diverse as Paul McCartney to Japandroids to Sea Wolf to Death Grips played sets across the various stages and tents that took up all of the 780 acres that the festival sprawls across and for the weekend all eyes in the music world were on Manchester. The music played was almost across the board, incredible. Paul McCartney’s headlining set on Friday was described by many concert goers as “the best concert of my life” and it was obvious why as Paul appeared to have not lost a step, tearing through a nearly three hour setlist and three subsequent encores while managing to balance Beatle’s classics with Wings and tributes to fallen bandmates and rock icons George Harrison (“Something”) and John Lennon (“Here Today”) while also paying tribute to Jimi Hendrix, playing Hendrix’s slinky “Foxy Lady”. The Superjams were also a highlight of the weekend and likely the only place where anyone would be able to see R.Kelly sharing a stage with John Oates and Jim James for a soul warming cover of Sam Cooke’s “Change is Gonna Come”. Across the board the performances were stellar but for many it as much about the whole Bonnaroo experience rather than the music alone. Across the festival, there was always someone who was sharing or helping someone else in need and even browsing through the virtual community that is present in the aftermath of the festival, a certain type of “spirit of Bonnaroo” can be felt amongst all who go.

Also notable was the comedy tent where despite long lines and short sets, big names like David Cross and Daniel Tosh took to the stage often being joined by bands or other comedians including The Lumineers who joined Ed Helms’ Whiskey Sour Radio Hour, an under the radar high light of the festival for many. Ed Helms seemed to be everywhere, performing in the Comedy Tent and also curating another Bluegrass Situation as he did before in LA, also reminding attendees of his plans to expand the Situation into a full blown festival of it’s own.

Whatever you wanted to do at Bonnaroo, the opportunity was afforded to you. For those there solely to see the headliners, credit is due to the festival organizers for managing to overcome the cancellation of Mumford & Sons on such short notice, for picking widely accessible names and also for making sure the shows went off without a hitch. For those there to see their favorite bands who were “about to blow up”, the tents were the perfect amount of stage for most bands and despite some sound imbalances on Thursday, the rest of the weekend was ideal. In all it was one of the strongest festivals in recent memory and maybe the best Bonnaroo of all time. The only downside is that the organizers have their work cut out topping it next year (ahem *Led Zeppelin* ahem)!

Bonnaroo Music & Arts Festival 2013 – Sunday June 16th, Day Four Preview bonnaroo

Hello and welcome to the final day of Bonnaroo 2013! You’ve survived the lion’s share, now there’s just one day left but today might just be the most exciting of all. If I had to summarize the day in one theme it would be hip hop. The first act I’ll be waking up to see is at 1:30 when Ghostface Killah’s vocal twin Action Bronson takes the stage in “The Other Tent”. Directly after him but on “What Stage” is every mother’s favorite rap game partnership Macklemore & Ryan Lewis who are sure to put on a lavish show for the fans. There’s a brief lull here where more likely than not I’ll be resting up for later shows but notably playing are Canadian rockstars The Sheepdogs. For most fans however there is one name that stands well above the rest on the afternoon’s bill. With his album good kid, m.A.A.d city, Kendrick Lamar solidified his place as the best young rapper in the game, with one of the best hip hop albums in recent memory, perhaps top ten all time. His live shows, which usually also feature other artists on his label Top Dawg Entertainment, are known to be showcases for Kendrick’s talent and with the hype that has grown up around the young mc, expect several guest appearances during his set.

After Kendrick the tone of the afternoon shifts back more towards rock and Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeroes will be bringing their big band collective to the “Which Stage” at 5:30, followed by The National on “What Stage” at 6:30. In the time in between or if either act isn’t holding my attention, I’m pretty pumped to have my back up plan be Tame Impala, the Australian group that is reviving the psychedelic rock of past generations. I saw them once this year in New York and the show would have a great time had it not been in a cramped club with screaming college girls everywhere. After The National, another act who has blown up this past year goes on in “The Other Tent”. A$AP Rocky blew up in the past two years with the release of an amazing mixtape , Live.Love.A$AP. and the release of his album Long.Live.A$AP and expect for his show to be a highlight of the festival. Perhaps as a portend of things to come, every rapper who was featured on Rocky’s (jaw dropping) clique cut “1 Train” with the exception of Joey Bada$$ and Yelawolf are at Bonnaroo already so we can hope that these new names in the game get together again. Unfortunately after Rocky, we’re left with only one show to close the festival, Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers. Old enough to know how to throw a live show and with enough ubiquity to close a festival, Tom Petty is the perfect middle ground and promises to end Bonnaroo 2013 in style.

Let us know what you thought about the festival, who were the best acts, what you would like to see next year or anything related to Bonnaroo in the comments section below and have a great rest of your summer!

Bonnaroo 2013 Schedule | Sunday, June 16th

What Stage:
Lee Fields & the Expressions 12:30 – 1:30
Macklemore & Ryan Lewis 2:30 – 3:30
Kendrick Lamar 4:30 – 5:30
The National 6:30 – 8:00
Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers 9:00 – 11:00
Which Stage:
Kacey Musgraves 12:00 – 1:00
Delta Rae 1:45 – 2:45
The Sheepdogs 3:30 – 4:45
Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros 5:30 – 6:45
David Byrne & St. Vincent 7:30 – 9:00

This Tent:
The Rubens 12:15 – 1:15
JEFF the Brotherhood 1:45 – 2:45
Baroness 3:15 – 4:30
Swans 5:00 – 6:30
Divine Fits 7:00 – 8:30
That Tent:
Aoife O’Donovan 12:15 – 1:00
John Fullbright 1:30 – 2:15
Black Prairie 2:45 – 3:45
Noam Pikelny & Friends 4:15 – 5:15
Sam Bush & Del McCoury 5:45 – 6:45
Ed Helms’ Bluegrass Situation Superjam with Special Guests 7:15 – 8:45

The Other Tent:
Matthew E. White 12:00 – 1:00
Tame Impala 6:00 – 7:15
Action Bronson 1:30 – 2:30
Wild Nothing 3:00 – 4:00
Holy Ghost! 4:30 – 5:30
A$AP ROCKY 7:45 – 9:00

Bonnaroo Comedy Theatre hosted by IFC:
David Cross ft. James Adomian 2:45 – 4:00
Bob Saget ft. Jared Logan & The Improvised Shakespeare Company 4:30 – 5:45
Bob Saget ft. Jared Logan & The Improvised Shakespeare Company 6:15 – 7:30

New Music On Tap Lounge brewed by Miller Lite:
Staying for the Weekend 12:00 – 12:50
LiL iFFy 1:20 – 2:10
Cat Martino 2:40 – 3:20
Alice & the Glass Lake 4:00 – 4:50
The Mowgli’s 5:20 – 6:10
Milow 6:40 – 7:30
Royal Thunder 8:00 – 8:50
Cafe Where?:
Bri Heart ft Jervy Hou 2:30 – 3:30
Little Red Lung 5:00 – 6:00
White Lung 7:45 – 8:45

Silent Disco:
DJ Keebz 4:00 – 7:00
Sonic Stage:
ItsTheReal 12:00 – 12:30
John Oates 1:00 – 1:30
Lucius 1:45 – 2:15
Mac DeMarco 2:30 – 3:00
The Revivalists 4:00 – 4:45
Aoife O’Donovan 3:15 – 3:45
Delta Rae 5:00 – 5:30
The Sheepdogs 5:45 – 6:15
Surprise Set 7:00 – 7:30

Solar Stage:
The Revivalists (Performance & Interview) 1:00 – 1:45
Very Special Guest (Interview) 2:00 – 2:45
Beans on Toast (Performance & Interview) 3:00 – 3:45
John Fullbright 4:00 – 4:45
Black Prairie (Performance & Interview)5:00 – 5:45
The Battleholex and Friends Hip Hop Variety Show Breakdancing 6:00 – 7:00

Bonnaroo Music & Arts Festival 2013 – Saturday June 15th, Day Three Preview

Welcome to Day Three! Friday was a blast but don’t expect it to stop quite yet! We still have all of today and tomorrow to see before we all start the long trek home and both days hold some really exciting acts. The shows start today at 12:15 to give all of us tired, huddled, yearning masses a chance to sleep in a little bit before  it’s back into full swing. The first show I plan on seeing is the Preservation Hall Jazz Band. When my family visited New Orleans a few years ago, they caught this act in their hometown and raved about them for months so I’m psyched to see whether all the hullaballoo surrounding their live show lives up to expectations. Next up for me is Gov’t Mule, a Southern rock jam band founded by Allman Brothers band members and an act that tours every summer as sure as the sun rises. They’re a staple at festivals across the country and you don’t get to that level of popularity by being less than stellar. If you’re into house and electronic music, check out Four Tet over in “The Other Tent” while I check out alternative psychedelic band Portugal. The Man, whose newest album has been on repeat in my apartment since it came out June 4th. That being said, I will be leaving that show early so that I don’t miss a single minute of hip hop legend Nas who will be rocking “What Stage” from 5:00-6:15.

After Nas’ show, the evening begins the semi-awkward period of time where Beach House, A-Trak, and The Lumineers will be playing their sets but everyone will be looking forward to the main headliner of the night on “What Stage”, Mumford & Sons. For those of you who aren’t predisposed to white guys and banjoes though, immediately after Mumford & Sons, r&b superstar R.Kelly will be crooning through his hit filled set from 11:30-1:00 after which the Rock n’ Soul Superjam with Jim James, John Oates, Zigaboo Modeliste and the Preservation Hall Jazz Band will be kickin’ out the jams until 2:00 when those who are still awake will be treated to their choice of Empire of the Sun, Boys Noize, or Bustle In Your Hedgerow as the final shows of the evening.

It’s important to note that there are many other stages at Bonnaroo this year as there are every year and while I have only been focusing my previews on the main music stages, there is tons to experience beyond the normal shows. Many performers are also performing DJ sets or dancing in the tents beyond the regular stages so be sure to explore. Remember to stay fueled and hydrated and get ready for the last day!

Bonnaroo 2013 Schedule | Saturday, June 15th

What Stage:
Preservation Hall Jazz Band 1:00 – 2:00
Nas 5:00 – 6:15
Björk 7:00 – 8:30
Mumford & Sons 9:30 – 11:30
Which Stage:
Gov’t Mule 2:45 – 4:15
Solange 2:25 – 3:15
Cults 12:30 – 1:30
Portugal. The Man 4:00 – 5:15
Cat Power 6:15 – 7:15
The Lumineers 8:15 – 9:30
R. Kelly 11:30 – 1:00

This Tent:
Patrick Watson 12:30 – 1:30
Lord Huron 2:00 – 3:00
Tallest Man On Earth 3:30 – 4:45
Dirty Projectors 5:15 – 6:30
Beach House 7:00 – 8:30
Rock n’ Soul Dance Party Superjam featuring Jim James with John Oates, Zigaboo Modeliste (of the Meters), Preservation Hall Jazz 12:00 – 2:00
Bustle In Your Hedgerow 2:30 – 4:30
That Tent:
Two Gallants 1:45 – 3:00
Frank Turner and the Sleeping Souls 3:30 – 4:45
Drew Holcomb and the Neighbors 5:15 – 6:30
Dwight Yoakam 7:00 – 8:30
Billy Idol 12:00 – 1:30
Empire of the Sun 2:00 – 3:00

The Other Tent:
Clockwork 12:30 – 1:30
Death Grips 2:15 – 3:15
Four Tet 4:00 – 5:00
Matt & Kim 5:45 – 6:45
A-Trak 7:15 – 8:45
“Weird Al” Yankovic 12:00 – 1:30
Boys Noize 2:30 – 4:00

Bonnaroo Comedy Theatre hosted by IFC:
Michael Che, Nikki Glaser, Jared Logan, James Adomian 12:45 – 2:00
Ed Helms’ Whisky Sour Radio Hour 2:45 – 4:00
David Cross ft. James Adomian 4:30 – 5:45
Comedy Bang! Bang! with Scott Aukerman and Reggie Watts 6:30 – 7:45

New Music On Tap Lounge:
Ranch Ghost 12:00 – 12:50
James McCartney 1:20 – 2:10
Chris Stapleton 2:40 – 3:30
Daniel Romano & The Trilliums 4:00 – 4:50
Lucius 5:20 – 6:10
SIMO 8:00 – 8:50
Bean 9:20 – 10:10
William Tyler 10:40 – 11:30
Mac DeMarco 12:00 – 12:50
Cafe Where?:
Stop Light Observations 6:40 – 7:30
Peanut Butter Lovesicle 1:45 – 2:45
Tiny Victories 3:45 – 4:45
Kyng 6:00 – 7:00
The Revivalists 8:30 – 9:30

Silent Disco:
DJ Keebz 4:00 – 6:00
DJ Sam Spiegel of N.A.S.A. 6:00 – 8:00
Jared Dietch 11:00 – 2:00
MSSL CMMND 2:00 – 5:00

Sonic Stage:
Johnnyswim 12:00 – 12:30
Futurebirds 12:45 – 1:15
Rayland Baxter 1:30 – 2:00
JEFF the Brotherhood 2:15 – 2:45
Kalidescope Space Tribe 3:00 – 3:45
Ryan Montbleau Band 4:00 – 4:30
Patrick Watson 4:45 – 5:15
Lord Huron 5:30 – 6:00
Matrimony 6:15 – 6:45

Solar Stage:
MC Yogi 11:30 – 12:30
Ryan Montbleau Band 1:00 – 1:45
Naia Kete 2:00 – 2:45
The Mowgli’s 3:00 – 3:45
Preservation Hall Jazz Band 4:00 – 4:45
Special Guest (Performance & Interview) 5:00 – 5:45
Mawre African Drum & Dance 6:00 – 7:00
The Flavor Savers Beard & Mustache Contest Carnivalesque Entertainment:
Bellydance & Vaudeville 8:30 – 9:30

Valentina – Wolves EP review

Wolves is the long-anticipated five-song EP by Valentina Pappalardo (who records simply as Valentina). It is the follow-up to her 2011 EP Weights, which started a buzz about the singer’s voice that only gained momentum while fans waited for her next release.

From all outward appearances, Valentina has it all. The sexy Italian-English songstress is lithe and brooding, with thick dark hair, pale skin, and full lips. She looks…and on the surface sort of sounds…like she should be staring out from a David Lynch film. Some sort of muse to strange subterranean debauchery that makes sense only once the viewer lets go of the need to impose sense. I wanted to like this before I even heard one note. I wanted Valentina to be Siouxsie Sioux but sexier, Marianne Faithfull but darker, Nico without the track marks and self-loathing. But she’s none of these things. And despite my predisposition to like Wolves, instead I found it musically boring and lyrically trite.

Valentina is a technically proficient vocalist, though at times it is hard to tell. The moments where her voice is completely pure and unprocessed are few. Is she a raw talent or just another pop success created via studio wizardry and the magic of filters and effects?

The songs here have a tendency to build and then fall flat, as if they are never able to reach their crescendo. Half-stillborn, they slowly slink out and then away, with no semblance of dynamism. The songs feel only skin deep and underdeveloped.

The simplistic, repetitive lyrics only add to the shallow feel of this record. In the title track, “Wolves,” for example: “You see it in your sleep, the howling wolves are coming out to haunt us down…and the road’s in a straight line” (which is, by the way, about 80 percent of the song’s entire lyrical content, repeated over and over). Or the simplistic imagery of “Gabriel”: “Wide awake and I can hear my heart beat. Hope it cradles me and rocks my bones to sleep.”

At the beginning of “Gabriel,” it seems as if the music will become an experimental soundscape. Layers of seemingly discordant sound—soft, repetitive electronic wash, keyboards (and is that an organ?), and then Valentina’s unadulterated voice—start the song. Then things fall away to formula and emptiness.

The bottom line is that music has to be evocative, has to have something behind it. It needs to elicit a gut response in listeners, whether that’s to make them want to fight or dance or fuck or whatever. It has to have the power to spark something inside people. Wolves does not succeed in this; instead it is flaccid, sterile, and empty. It provides no challenge at all, and certainly no authenticity.

Bonnaroo Music & Arts Festival 2013 – Thursday June 13th, Day One Preview

With every summer comes the promise of barbecues, sun tanning, swimming pools, and maybe most exciting of all, music festivals. For each and every fan, there is a festival no matter what your musical tastes from Electric Forest (primarily electronica music) to Rock The Bells (a multi city hip hop bonanza). One festival in particular offers an eclectic variety of acts in addition to a rabid almost cultish fan base that return again and again to rural Tennessee to experience Bonnaroo. This year’s ‘Roo runs from June 13th to June 16th and promises a great time for any and all. As the festival runs, each day we will be previewing a few of the acts that are playing that day so let’s open with Thursday’s line up.

For those who are fans of guitar and indie rock, Thursday promises to be a great time. Canadian duo Japandroids bring their guitar and drum assault to “This Tent” at 10:00 and the show promises to be raucous. Look for them to play cuts from last year’s awesome Celebration Rock (seriously, if you haven’t heard this album, you’re missing out) and hopefully we will be treated to some new material. Following them in “This Tent” is the English foursome calling themselves (pronounced “Alt-J”, named after the keyboard shortcut) are bringing their unique brand of indie rock, heavily influenced by electronic bass and drum sensibilities, and fans will likely be treated to cuts from last year’s freshman album An Awesome Wave. A few of my friends caught the band at a Williamsburg club show earlier this year and said that it was one of the most varied rock shows they had ever been to so needless to say I will be making every effort to catch them. Bonnaroo organizers were kind enough to give us a 30 minute break before they bring out the big guns for “This Tent”, another English foursome, The Vaccines. After two fantastic albums and innumerable comparisons to acts like The Strokes, Interpol, even The Ramones, The Vaccines have big expectations to meet. Expect this show, one of the last of the night, to draw a huge crowd and be especially energetic.

Of course, it wouldn’t be Bonnaroo if there was only one stage or genre. In “That Tent”, the last show of the night is being played by ALO (Animal Liberation Orchestra), a funky jam band that recalls summer vibes and beach cookouts. They are preceded on stage by indie buzz band Django Django, and sister act Haim who will play their unique updated take on 70’s soft rock with token urban influences. Also playing on the stage in “The Other Tent” is a favorite of hip hop connoisseurs, Killer Mike and Pretty Lights Label signee, Paper Diamond. Also on the electro heavy stage of “The Other Tent” is Canadian electronic duo Purity Ring and beat pad savant AraabMuzik. For me at least though, the most exciting act of the day are Bonnaroo veterans Walk The Moon who bring their pop-influenced, easily danceable indie rock to “the Other Tent” midway through the day.

Bonnaroo looks to be a great time for all and regardless of your tastes, you will find something you like and that’s only Day One. Remember to stay hydrated and fed and have fun! We’ll catch you tomorrow with the preview for Day 2.

Bonnaroo 2013 Schedule | Thursday, Jun 13th

This Tent:
DIIV 4:00 – 5:00
Futurebirds 5:30 – 6:30
Ariel Pink 7:00 – 8:00
Deap Vally 8:30 – 9:30
Japandroids 10:00 – 11:00
Alt-J 11:30 – 12:30
The Vaccines 1:00 – 2:00

That Tent:
Nicki Bluhm & the Gramblers 3:00 – 4:00
Milo Greene 4:30 – 5:30
JD McPherson 6:00 – 7:00
HAIM 7:30 – 8:30
Django Django 9:00 – 10:00
Father John Misty 10:30 – 11:30
Allen Stone 12:00 – 1:00
ALO with Special Guests 1:30 – 2:30

The Other Tent:
The Stepkids 3:15 – 4:15
twenty one pilots 4:45 – 5:45
Araabmuzik 6:15 – 7:15
Walk The Moon 7:45 – 8:45
Purity Ring 9:15 – 10:15
Paper Diamond 10:45 – 11:45
Killer Mike 12:15 – 1:15

Bonnaroo Comedy Theatre hosted by IFC:
Maria Bamford ft. Kyle Dunnigan and Cristela Alonzo 6:00 – 7:15
Maria Bamford ft. Kyle Dunnigan and Cristela Alonzo 8:00 – 9:15
Mike Birbiglia ft. Michael Che 10:00 – 11:15
Eric Andre, Nikki Glaser, Chris Gethard & Kyle Dunnigan 12:00 – 1:15

New Music On Tap Lounge:
Ri¢hie 1:00 – 2:00
Johnnyswim 2:30 – 3:30
Andrew Duhon 4:00 – 5:00
Houndmouth 5:30 – 6:30
Sons of Fathers 7:00 – 8:00
Wake Owl 8:30 – 9:30
Jonny Fritz 10:00 – 11:00
Maps & Atlases 11:30 – 12:30
Capital Cities 1:00 – 2:00

Silent Disco Sonic Stage:
Vacationer (DJ Set) 4:00 – 6:00
Jonny Santos 6:00 – 8:30
DJ Logic 8:30 – 10:30
DJ Sam Spiegel of N.A.S.A. 10:30 – 12:30
DJ Jazzy Jeff 12:30 – 2:00

Solar Stage:
Asian Teacher Factory 3:00 – 4:00
In Memory of Gregor Barnum: Carbon Shredding 4:00 – 4:15
The Battleholex and Friends Hip Hop Variety Show Breakdancing 4:15 – 5:15
ON an ON 5:30 – 6:30
Ogya Afrobeat 6:45 – 7:45
The Flavor Savers Beard & Mustache Contest 8:00 – 9:00
Carnivalesque Entertainment: Bellydance & Vaudeville 9:15 – 10:15

Phoenix – Bankrupt! album review

Phoenix, Phoenix has been relatively silent, not touring at all since their last show at Madison Square Garden. While I caught them recently at an extremely intimate Williamsburg club tune-up before playing Saturday Night Live, it wasn’t until recently that I had the chance to sit down and give the full album a listen. Opening with their lead single “Entertainment” shows Phoenix back in stride with an uptempo electronic pop nugget that sounds as if Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix grew up a bit in the four years since the last album. The whole album in fact takes all the sounds and themes of their previous effort and adds variety from the high Eastern influenced strings of “Entertainment” to the drop out of all instruments aside while Thomas Mars sings to “Put my name on your list/ S.O.S. in Bel Air”, a move that sounds all too Phoenix if you catch my drift.

The album as a whole is extremely strong. Listeners who expect the same Phoenix will be pleasantly surprised by the next step in the band’s evolution. While “S.O.S. in Bel Air” and “The Real Thing” are obvious spiritual successors to earlier songs like “Long Distance Call” and “If I Ever Feel Better”, the band manages to spice things up enough to make the tracks feel fresh and exciting. “Trying to Be Cool” brings a new almost Cure-esque ethereality to Mars’ typical high nasal crooning. Title track “Bankrupt!” brings an instrumental electronic build up to a more introspective portion of the album which we snap out of almost instantly with “Drakkar Noir” and “Don’t” following shortly after as more evidence of Phoenix’s mastery of catchy electronic pop shines through on the two tracks. Even closing track “Oblique City”, although at times sounds cluttered, is a strong showing for the band that sees the French boys pushing the envelope of what they have collectively produced up until this point.

Perhaps the most intriguing part of the album is the inclusion of 71 bonus takes of songs that are included on the deluxe edition which truly show the process that went into the making of this album and all the various ideas and stages each song went through. With their creative process on such brazen display, it is even easier to relate to and subsequently appreciate the songs that did make the cut. The new album is available now on Glassnote Records and the band is going to be touring the US this summer, hitting most major festivals. You can find out when they are coming to a stage near you at their website,

Fall Out Boy Spring Tour Dates

So here’s my problem: I’m incredibly nostalgic. And by nostalgic, I mean that I’m still in love with a band that I loved when I was an immature 12 year-old with severe identity issues. The band grew, the fanbase shrunk, and they decided to take a break because they were sick of each other. Then I was in my dorm bed this past winter, and Fall Out Boy was like, “yeah, we might as well make a new album and get back together.” Thanks, boys. Patrick, Pete, Joe and Andy are back at it and they’re going on a sold out tour for all us twenty-somethings fixated on our emotional issues of yesterday. Have most of our readers moved on from emo-pop-punk? Sure, but I know there’s a couple people out there who are at least a little nostalgic.

Fall Out Boy is going out on tour all across the states, and making a few stops up here in Canada. Your city may be sold out, but you never know if the venue will release some last minute holds. MVRemix will hopefully be covering the Montreal date on May 25th and bringing you a review shortly thereafter. Tickets may be available later on evenko’s website right here.

The dates are as follows, with the likes of Hollywood Holt, NK, and New Politics as openers – check your date for the specifics.

5/14 Milwaukee, WI – Rave
5/16 Chicago, IL – Riviera Theatre
5/17 Columbus, OH – LC Pavilion
5/21 Pittsburgh, PA – Stage AE
5/22 Detroit, MI – The Fillmore
5/24 Toronto, ON – Sound Academy
5/25 Montreal, QC – Metropolis
5/26 Boston, MA – HOB
5/28 Niagara Falls, NY – The Rapid Theater
5/29 New York, NY – Terminal 5
5/30 Philadelphia, PA – Electric Factory
5/31 Washington, DC – 9:30 Club
6/1 Charlotte, NC – Fillmore
6/2 Atlanta, GA – Tabernacle
6/4 Orlando, FL – HOB
6/5 Miami, FL – Fillmore
6/7 Houston, TX – Bayou Music Center
6/8 Dallas, TX – Palladium
6/9 Austin, TX – Stubb’s
6/11 Phoenix, AZ – Marquee
6/13 Los Angeles, CA – Wiltern
6/15 Las Vegas, NV – HOB
6/16 San Francisco, CA – The Fox Theater
6/18 Portland, OR – Roseland
6/19 Seattle, WA – Sodo
6/20 Vancouver, BC – Commodore Ballroom
6/22 Salt Lake City, UT – In the Venue
6/23 Denver, CO – Ogden
6/25 Kansas City, MO – Uptown Theatre
6/26 St. Paul, MN – Myth
6/28 St. Louis, MO – The Pageant
6/29 Indianapolis, IN – Egyptian Room
6/30 Nashville, TN – Ryman Auditorium

The Shins Spring Tour Dates

The Shins are still riding the success of Point of Morrow and are out on tour for a little bit this month. MVRemix saw them last August and Osheaga, and we were rather impressed. Though I’m still wondering when James Mercer is gonna get around to that Broken Bells followup. So if you wanna hear that “Simple Song” song live, here’s your chance! MVRemix will be covering the Montreal date next week on the 23rd – and you can still buy your tickets for that show right here on evenko’s website!

The rest of the dates are as follows:

05-17 Gulf Shores, AL – Hangout Music Fest
05-18 Memphis, TN – Minglewood Hall
05-19 Chicago, IL – Aragon Ballroom
05-21 Cincinnati, OH – Horseshoe Casino
05-22 Toronto, Ontario – Sound Academy
05-23 Montreal, Quebec – Metropolis
05-25 Boston, MA – Boston City Hall Plaza
05-27 Richmond, VA – The National
05-28 Norfolk, VA – The Norva