Download his newest batch of echo-chambered breezy jams at vrprsnts.com beginning TOMORROW (Dec 1)
Its really good.
UNC’s very own hip-hop phenomenon, Lexicon, recently dropped another mixtape that we think you should check out. Vinyl Records is currently working with Lexicon on a special project you’ll be hearing more about soon.
Download the mixtape, Cecil: The Preview, here: ttp://www.zshare.net/download/6526336759e9664a/
Check out this great download of the Vinyl Records 2009 Artist Sampler, with tracks from all 3 current Vinyl Records artists, Lafcadio Shot Back, Lake Inferior, and My Boy Rascal, as well as an exclusive intro from Lexicon. Its a great way to hear some classic tracks as well as some previously unreleased material.
here’s the link: http://dl.getdropbox.com/u/932320/Vinyl_Records_UNC_sampler_09.zip
It’s hard to believe that Bonnaroo was almost a full month ago, but for entertainment value, I offer you my notes from Saturday–highlighted by Bruce Springsteen and of course MGMT. The day started off with the last-minute line-up addition of Jimmy Buffet, who I heard from across the fair grounds while waiting in line for a shower, but which was nonetheless unmistakable. Though it was a late start on the day, Paige Smith and I had Bon Iver and Of Montreal as background music for a trip to the Brewers Tent, which houses about a dozen “small” breweries which offer samplings and full cups on a pay-by-the-ticket basis. It was great to see such a representation of small, local, independent breweries, from Pisgah Brewing, to Asheville Brewing Company, to Michelob and Bud Lite.
…Alright, so maybe the range of breweries was more important than the degree to each was “indie”. Much to their credit, Magic Hat had set up a bean-bag-toss tic-tac-toe board, offering various Magic Hat items as prizes. With a little luck and inspiration I was able to pull off some lass-toss heroics, but we’ll save that story for now.
After the Brewer’s tent we headed to the Cinema tent (another new experience) to watch a new film by and interview with Don Hertzfeld (most well-known for his film “Rejected”). While I didn’t make it all the way to the Q&A, it’s hard to imagine what kind of questions one would ask Mr. Hertzfeld, other than those born from pure bewilderment.
And then there was Bruce Springsteen, making his three and a half hour set at THE Bonnaroo (as he referred to it), launching what was in my mind the most professional show of the weekend. Though wild stage antics are amusing, and can certainly captivate the audience if used effectively, the timing and unity of a band as practiced and experienced as Springsteen and E-Street is difficult to top. Even when Bruce is at his wildest, climbing around the audience or otherwise putting stress on his 50-some year old body, the band stays in perfect time, and there is no hesitation (just as James Brown or Sharon Jones emphasize, the frenzy and energy of the leadman or leadwoman only stands out if the best of the band is a background, restrained, allowing the start to shine).
It seemed that while the average Bonnaroo-er wasn’t exceptionally well versed in Springsteen songs, his show was viewed as one not to be missed, and for the die-hard Bruce-fans of course it was just frenzy. I, like many others I’m sure, got most of my Springsteen exposure through driving around with my Dad, and around Christmas when Bruce’s “Santa Claus is coming to town” was a necessity. With this said, it was certainly a historic moment for me when Bruce honored “Santa” as the first request, despite the heat and the time of year. After playing another two hours after that, he pulled out the all the top-hits to end on, Thunder Road, Glory Days, Born in the U.S.A., Dancing in the Dark…reminding everyone there that the Bruce Springsteen show is still one of the finest shows around.
An abrupt departure from the classic rock of The Boss, the next big act of the night was MGMT, at That Tent, drawing out the hipsters instead of the Jersey-ites. Though it turns out The Boss himself was watching MGMT (maybe they could start another project together…Board of Directors? CEO? SuprVizers?),
the fans that packed in proudly wore their pink and purple body paint, ties around the head, and torn up trendy-wear. Despite being somewhat tired of the E-d up couples chewing eachothers faces off, MGMT put on a great, action-packed performance, and revealed three new songs in the midst of running through their new infamous lineup of Kids, Weekend Wars, Time to Pretend, etc. The two new songs they revealed before their encore (all set to come out on the 2010 album)
were very poppy, more so than their electro-pop hits off of Oracular Spectacular, but potentially just as catchy. The new song revealed in the middle of their encore, called “Celebration”, was quite different, and had more of a “jam” feel than the tightly-constructed pop-model.
Their show was great fun, though I do pity whoever the girl in front of me called during “Electric Feel”–and who she proceeded to shout all the lyrics to. Ah, hit me like an electric feeeeeel..
As Sunday morning came around that the week of mayhem and music known as Bonnaroo was near its end, everyone was a little slower to crawl out of their tents, the layers of mud and grime began acquired while rolling around the mud during last nights trip no longer seemed so life-changing, and in general the 70,000+ audience was realizing that before long they would have to again enter the real world. And yet, for me the morning started out unreal, as I heard, rolling over the fair grounds, a song that is trademark to the Rebirth Brass Band and almost every other New Orleans band, “Feel Like Funkin’ It Up”. Checking the schedule, I couldn’t figure out who was playing it, or where, but Paige Smith and I raced towards Centeroo in hopes of getting a little dose of N’awleans. Of course, as soon as we reached the stage they finished their set, as they had been a list minute add-on (another argument for keeping the computer/internet handy during the week…). Having just missed that, the day began musically with singer/songwriter Brett Dennen (who I first saw in New Orleans, coincidentally, and who toured through Chapel Hill last fall). While he has certainly changed his image some, Mr. Dennen continues to fall in the soft/smooth indie pop that Jack Johnson rules the throne of. What Mr. Dennen probable had not realized, however, was that he had captured the frat-boy crowd as well.
Trying to find something a bit more upbeat than Brett Dennen, Andrew Bird, and Band of Horses, Paige Smith and I decided to try out the Silent Disco, which had too long of a line leading up to that point. The DJ for the afternoon was Motion Potion, who did a fantastic job–combining mash-ups, transformations, drop mixes, with ease, and (in my mind) creating a more dance-able blend than either Girl Talk or Paul Oakenfeld had on Friday night.
The true sign of this, of course, was the variety of ages groovin’ to Mr. Potion’s concotion–
After that, Andrew Bird performed at Which Stage, wrapping up the tour he began in Chapel Hill last fall with his concert at Memorial Hall in October. The premier show of “Michael and Michael Have Issues” was going on in the comedy tent during the end of Andrew Bird and beginning of Band of Horses, and that proved to be a nice way to conclude the Bonnaroo 2009 experience, before walking around one last time and taking in the sights and smells (for better or worse) of a Manchester farm transformed to music-festival capitol of the world.
Until next year, keep on keepin’ on Bonnaroo, and we will see you soon.
Chapel Hill has long been known for its indie rock scene-from Mammoth to Merge Records, to the multitude of noises pulsating within a given hole in the wall, dimly lit alleyway, or down some ominous stairwell on any night of the week. However, a very particular sound floated towards the top of the community’s musical melting pot this year, and it involved deep, rhythmic bass, glistening guitar, emotive keyboards, and some of the most energetic drumming around.
Andrew Rooney’s stage persona “Apollo” and his out-of-this-world “Celestial Starship Band” threw a wrench into the plaid shirts, snap buttons, and tight denim world of Chapel Hill/Carrboro with inventive hip hop backed by funkified, soulful jams that can’t be heard outside of the Triad’s “Solos Unit”, the undisputed local masters fusion hip hop.
From a sold out CD release show at Local 506 with fellow Vinyl Records’ labelmates Lafcadio and Lake Inferior, to nearly every on-campus concert and outdoor festival he could get his hands on, Apollo proved himself a trusted source for socially conscious, local hip hop that kicks out the jams and maintains a party vibe to the nth degree.
Though Apollo can be expected to still make face around Chapel Hill next year, his life leads him a bit east, into the heart of downtown Durham as an up-and-coming high school math teacher. There’s no doubt Apollo and producer Proper-T will continue their musical pursuits, but it does mean he will be parting ways with Chapel Hill-based Vinyl Records UNC, once again finding himself as another face in the vast sea of self-releasing and promoting hip hop artists. What are his distinguishing characteristics? A solid sophomore release, “The Architect,” available at his myspace for only eight bucks, and some incredible familiarity with the local music scene and many of its avid supporters–not to mention he’s a soon-to-be UNC graduate with friends, family, and a university-based swath of supporters to back him up whenever he desires a return to the lime light.
So long, Apollo, and we wish you the best of luck. We can’t wait to stroll down 9th Street and hear “Spittin’ Rhymes” blaring out of Shooters. And for our readers, download these free tunes, including the second single from “The Architect,” “Crusin’” as well as a live version of his anti-Asher Roth “College Life.”
Hello everyone! Amidst the Vinyl Artist updates, the end of year exams, and of course the thunderstorms…make sure you know this dance for your summer ice cream fun!
The Industrial/Psychedlic/Techno Presets begin their North American Tour this week, and tomorrow night (March 31st) will be at Cats Cradle. Their new album “Apocalyso” has been receiving rave reviews:
“For only two people, they throw one hell of a hot party” – Metro Pop
“…Anthems for husky straight dudes who aren’t ashamed to dance” – SPIN
“The Presets jump back on the dancefloor and aim for the cosmos with their latest. “Yippyo-yay’ and “My People” will light up the night” – XLR8R
Many of their tracks are available at thepresets.com, and even without headphones a visit to their website will give you a good idea of the group.
The sound they produce has heavy electro roots, but the filters and effects they utilize declare them definite descendants of the Parliament and Funkadelic era. The persistent groove of “Kitty in the Middle” from their 2003 EP “Blow Up” is far removed from their most recent single, “If You Know”, which came out March 27th, and has a much more Coldplay-esque electro anthem feel.
The Golden Filter is also touring with The Presets, but for this show Chapel Hill DJ “Hidden Cat” will be opening and playing between sets, giving you the chance not only to become entranced in the grooves of the Presets, but also to witness a local dj and remixer who was recently publicized on Rolling Stone for his remix of “The Rip” by Portishead available here.
Come out tomorrow night to Cats Cradle, begin your night with Hidden Cat, and move through the Golden Filter to The Presets. And from there, your night will begin…
Live records of each group here:
Again, voting ends at midnight tonight. If you haven’t already voiced your opinion, then I’d say its about time to do so.
The Huguenots (songs two and three combined, song one lost in translation)
songs 2 and 3
Check back soon after midnight tonight when we announce the winner!
The showdown throws down beginning around 8pm! Its in Gerrard Hall, wedged between Memorial Hall and the Campus Y. FREE SHOW!
What are the two most annoying things in the world?
A capella groups and tweens.
Which is why you’d assume Kids Rap’n the Hits Vol. 6 is awful. And it is. It is a complete trainwreck. A horde of 12 year olds sing slightly off key to a midi backing track. There isn’t actually any “rap’n” – just sing talking. In this case, read “rap’n” as “songs by black people.” Give the songs a listen, just so you can have the pleasure/horror of hearing kids going through puberty say, “If you like it then you shoulda put a ring on it,” or “I fly like paper, got high like planes.” Quite disturbing.
- Live Your Life
- Single Ladies (Put a Ring on it)
- Just Dance
- Paper Planes
- I’m Yours
- American Boy
- Hot N Cold
- Let it Rock
- I Want it All