Now that the end of the academic year is upon us, it would serve everyone well to take a look at what Vinyl Records recording artists Lake Inferior are up to. In the past few months, they’ve gone from self-recording tracks in their house to releasing the Lake Inferior EP with VR and being profiled on the national music website Aquarium Drunkard. Even though no one seems to be able to describe what Lake Inferior sounds like (there are, like, synths and pop and indie stuff, but not indie synth-pop), the band has still been a hit both in the local scene and the national scene. There are Youtube videos of teenage girls from California singing “Spiders” into the camera. The 30-year-old guy with mutton chops who always wears the Polvo t-shirt and works at the record store down the street raves about “Landlocked Surf Rock.” Lake Inferior’s audience is as all-encompassing as their style.
This summer, the band looks to test out that appeal on their East Coast tour, starting in Georgia and going up to New York. After that, it’s back to North Carolina to work on songs and eventually make the next Lake Inferior record, to be released next year. Talk around the office is that the band might even have a limited edition 7″ in the pipeline. The next year for Lake Inferior should be a fruitful one.
However, before any of that happens, LI will be playing at Local 506 on Thursday, May 7th. The night will be the EP release show for Aminal, with Schooner also performing. All three acts are well worth any trouble or money it takes to see them, so be there and be early, because we all know what happened the last time a Vinyl artist was playing an EP release at 506. Line stretching a block away, and people not getting to see Lake Inferior, that’s what.
Check out below, where we’ve got three free mp3′s from Lake Inferior: “Spiders” and “How the Wars are Won” from the Lake Inferior EP, and a live recording of “(I Have) Night Terrors.” Enjoy!
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.”
Lafcadio arrived on UNC’s campus with the voracity of a lion last September, quickly signed on as one of Vinyl Records’ inaugural artists. With boots made for walking all over anything that came in their way, Lafcadio immediately found themselves as part of the fierce vanguard of up-and-coming Chapel Hill musical talent–twang, vests, sultry vocals, and the kind of alt country that spans the entire gamut from KT Tunstall to Uncle Tupelo, with all the blues, soul, and balladeers you can think of in between.
Most recently, the band that shot back was spotted performing a primetime Thursday night slot at Shakori Hills Grassroots Festival to a wildly entertained audience consisting of members of the Holy Ghost Tent Revival and many a Cheerwine enthusiat. Soon after, the band graced the stage of music.mync.com’s Studio B for a live webcast available here to check out if you haven’t done so already. There’s no point in whispering once the Lion has growled.
After a May 9th show at The Cave, summertime will inevitably find Lafcadio going their separate ways only to reunite in August with new songs in preparation for their yet-to-be-titled sophomore Vinyl Records release. Be on the look out for a sound with more southern-fried fixins than ever before, with maybe even a hint of Jameson and Bailey’s to match as guitarist and one of the band’s songwriters Ryan Dowdy makes his way into the potato-famined lands of Ireland to study folk music during Lafcadio’s summer hiatus.
Don’t forget to check out the final Lafcadio performance for the next couple of months this SATURDAY MAY 9th at THE CAVE, and feel free to snatch up a few free downloads the good folks over at Vinyl Records have been able to muster up for your aural pleasure. Songs include the second single, “Seven Leagues” off of their debut EP, as well as two live tracks from January’s sold-out album release party at Local 506, titled “Nowhere to Fall” and a cover of “Black is the Color of My True Love’s Hair.” Do download, and do share with friends.
Nowhere to Fall (live)
Black is the Color of My True Love’s Hair
Denizens of Chapel Hill, your attention please!
Vinyl has been running a little under the radar lately, planning out some stuff for next year, but on Friday we’re bringing the noise again. We’ve brought out the local experts to dole out a step by step guide to every aspect of putting out an album. Come get the low down from these talented pros:
- Jeff Carroll, Bluefield Mastering
- Tracy Allman, American Media International, LTD
- Josh Wittman, RedEye Distribution
- Grayson Currin, Independent Weekly & Burly Time Records
- Glen Boothe, Local 506
The event takes place from 5pm to 7pm in the FPG Student Union’s Great Hall. Anyone and everyone is encouraged to stop by – it doesn’t matter if you’re a student or not.
See you there!
From Andrew Coonin:
I have been having one HEEL of a time being a Tar Heel. Our second National Championship of the year (Women’s Soccer and Men’s Basketball) is something that we all should be proud of. The feeling on campus is electric. We should also be proud of the way we treat our town, University and fellow Tar Heels in the throws of victory, but some of the events that occurred on Franklin Street after Roy’s Boys won a National Championship threatened lives and stripped some of their dignity and pride.
So what can we do? Why should we care? Where is the line between celebration and destruction?
I would like to invite you to a meeting to discuss your experience of celebration. Your voice is integral in shaping future policies and creating a more positive celebratory experience. You are the catalyst to a brighter Carolina.
This meeting will occur on Monday, April 13th at 6:00 pm in Murphy Hall, room 116.
We expect that this meeting will be a great incubator of ideas and a catalyst for stronger communication on campus and throughout the town of Chapel Hill.
I hope we can count on you to be there and share your experiences and ideas for a better Carolina. I also hope that we will have reasons to celebrate again in the near future.
For more information, or if you have a question please contact Andrew Coonin at email@example.com
We know everyone is right in the middle of tests this week, but if you have a moment during the day tomorrow, make sure to go down the Graham Memorial and here the sweet sounds of Shannon McArthur and the newly-Vinylized Colby Ramsay at noon. They will play music and you will swoon in the way that people always swoon when boys sing songs to them.
So go ahead, get your swoon on.
Taking a break from our coverage of the upcoming February Face-Off, we must remind everyone of a great night of music happening on Saturday. Our very own Lafcadio will be opening for The Whiskey Smugglers for the late show at the Cave, but not before a fantastic band from Asheville named Buffalo takes the stage for the early show.
If you like folk music, standup bass, loud banjo, and maybe some spoons or dobro if they feel inclined, this is the band for you. After Buffalo are done with their set, have a drink or two and wait for this ball of gorgeous to take the stage:
Buffalo plays at 7:30, Lafcadio at 9:30. All times approximate and subject to change.
Remember to vote for Anoop Desai on American Idol tonight! He will be competiting against 11 other contestants for one spot in the top 12 out of 36 semifinalists. In case you’ve been hiding under a rock somewhere for the past 8 seasons, you can watch American Idol tonight at 8 on Fox. Voting begins at 10pm and ends at 12am. REMEMBER “ANOOP DOG!” We want you to vote about 4 million times so that I can get an interview with this guy. Huzzah.
Holden Thorp, the UNC Prez, will be playing with his band, Equinox, at the Thursdays on the Terrace performance tomorrow. Go watch HT play the keys, starting at noon. You should be up and about by then after a long night of celebrating the Tar Heel win at Carolina Indoor Stadium (you know they renamed it, right?).
As always, find a Vinyl friend and say hi.