This past June Flosstradamus came into town to play Summit Music Hall along with The Magician (Stephen Fasano) and Plastic Plates, the latter of whom not only played a stellar set, but had to extend it since Fasano was playing a disappearing act in his hotel room (a real diva act, IMHO). There were no complaints on our part, especially after The Magician’s set, when it finally came, was a let down in comparison. This month Plastic Plates released his E.P., Things I Didn’t Know I Loved, on Maison Kitsune, the French label that's celebrating 10 years of cultivating and celebrating great dance music.

It is September 11, 2012. The previous year I visited the former 9/11 Twin Towers site in New York City, I brought a letter to make an official statement of reflection and rebirth for all people concerned. Yet this year I sit in the heart of Yorkville, quite purposefully at Bellair, recording a video in relation to the Toronto International Film Festival on the topic of the role of spy agencies within global communications and feature films.

When I recently attended a marketing conference in Boston, HubSpot’s INBOUND 2012 to be more specific, the last thing I expected to see on the massive screen during a keynote was reference to Amanda Palmer. SXSW has traditionally led in terms of melding the natural marriage between the music and digital worlds, but to see it in this forum seemed foreign. Although it made a bit of sense, considering Boston is one of a few cities that Amanda calls home, I couldn’t help but wonder how many in the audience were familiar with her work as a solo artist or of her days with the Dresden Dolls, which seems like another lifetime ago.

In the equivalent of the sweat tent that threw James Ray into the slammer, the Shacklewell Arms in London’s East End, Captured Tracks darlings Dignan Porch and DIIV performed to a packed sardine house. When Shacklewell sells out, they mean it. I’m seriously talking no-room-to-spare, made possible by the emphatic splash these bands are making across the pond (and the U.S., for that matter).

17 Jul 2012

A little less than one year ago Aesop Rock was hitting the road for the Hail Mary Mallon Tour, a collaboration with Rob Sonic and DJ Big Wiz, his first project on his new label home, Rhymesayers, after El-P put Def Jux on infinite hold. Aesop returns with his own baby, Skelethon, the sixth in his lyrical-song-making career, and what a bouncy baby it is.

09 Jul 2012

While Madonna is known as the mother of reinvention, Liars do more than costume and hair-do changes – they come at your ears with a whole new sonic persona, one that surprises and delights while challenging you in wonderful ways. Case in point, WIXIW, an album title that causes one to pause at the pronunciation. For the record, it’s “wish you,” as in, wish you would explain that one.

It was early this morning when I saw Yuck on Twitter, prepping fans for the release of a new single, “Chew,” right in time for the band’s appearance at Coachella this weekend.

 The jewel of any city, whether you’re in Cleveland, Omaha, New York, Portland(ia), or here in Denver, is the art house movie theater. It is where one can experience unique and tantalizing events that celebrate creativity and ingenuity without the need for 3D glasses or servings of oil-soaked popcorn that could feed a circus. Here in Denver that oasis is Denver Film Center ala the Denver Film Society (DFS), and this Thursday and Friday (April 12 and April 13) DFS presents music and Beatles fanatics with an opportunity to be schooled on the making of songwriting history. This weekend you can partake in “Deconstructing THE BEATLES.”

 When I first saw We Were Promised Jetpacks perform it was SXSW 2010 at the Fader Fort party and in the light of day. It was a raucous set no doubt, but this night at SXSW, on stage of the Red 7 patio, the Scottish band’s energy was frenetic.

It was good news to learn that Dickies had once again secured their party abode at SXSW within the neighborhood-houses-meets-bar-zone area that has continued to evolve over the past few years. As I watched the stage being set for Minneapolis’ Howler, I went back to December of 2011 when I first heard the band’s “Back of Your Neck” track on Steve Lamacq’s Roundtable session on BBC6Music.

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