Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds - Barclays Center, New York
Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds - Barclays Center, New York
Alternative Music - Gig Reviews - Soundblab

Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds - Barclays Center, New York

Going back into the last century, I’ve seen Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds a ton over the years. He has never disappointed. No kitchen sink remains unscathed. Passions are torn to tatters and flung in your face. To take the edge off, he croons beautiful ballads telling you terrible things. And all of that was in store for the crowd at Barclays Center in Brooklyn last night. And more.

Kevin Orton
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Nine Inch Nails - Kings Theatre, Brooklyn (Night 2)
Nine Inch Nails - Kings Theatre, Brooklyn (Night 2)
Alternative Music - Gig Reviews - Soundblab

Nine Inch Nails - Kings Theatre, Brooklyn [Night 2]

Well, I just saw Nine Inch Nails play all of Broken in sequence. If that weren’t enough, they whipped out their cover of How To Destroy Angels’ “Parasite”, “Me, I’m Not” from Year Zero, and “The Background World”, the phenomenal closer from last year’s Add Violence. Somehow, after three unique and surprising sets, Trent motherfucking Reznor keeps things interesting.

paul_guyet
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She Makes War - The Brudenell Social Club, Leeds
She Makes War - The Brudenell Social Club, Leeds
Alternative Music - Gig Reviews - Soundblab

She Makes War - The Brudenell Social Club, Leeds

Bristol’s Laura Kidd has been releasing music as She Makes War for the last 8 years, steadily amassing an army of fans. A slot supporting The Wave Pictures a couple of years ago and the album Direction of Travel showed me what I’d been missing. Fast forward to 2018 and Kidd is headlining the Brudenell Social Club in support of her brand new album, Brace for Impact.

Andy Brown
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Titus Andronicus - The Bottleneck, Lawrence, KS
Titus Andronicus - The Bottleneck, Lawrence, KS
Alternative Music - Gig Reviews - Soundblab

Titus Andronicus - The Bottleneck, Lawrence, KS

It’s hard to believe this, but Titus Andronicus are one of the few bands that I can rely on to hit up the Kansas City market on almost every album tour. Which they legitimately have done. I’ve seen them on each of those tours – they rocked the hell out of the Riot Room in 2011, riding high off of their 2010 masterpiece The Monitor.

Tim Sentz
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Austin City Limits Festival 2018 - Day 3
Austin City Limits Festival 2018 - Day 3
Alternative Music - Gig Reviews - Soundblab

Austin City Limits Festival 2018 - Day 3

After a couple of typically toasty early Fall Texas days, Day 3 was further welcomed by a hard rain overnight which left parts of Zilker park a little swampy and more than a little humid.  Not to jinx it, but somehow I’ve attended many music festivals and had plenty of close calls, but never suffered a meaningful weather delay or cancellation.  In spite of some threats, ACL Weekend 2 went off without a hitch or delay.  

Mark Moody
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Nine Inch Nails - Kings Theatre, Brooklyn (Night 1)
Nine Inch Nails - Kings Theatre, Brooklyn (Night 1)
Alternative Music - Gig Reviews - Soundblab

Nine Inch Nails - Kings Theatre, Brooklyn [Night 1]

There’s something to be said for collecting. I’m not a collector in the sense that I obtain things, keep them in their wrapping, and never touch them again. I don’t go to conventions to trade my unwrapped things for other people’s unwrapped things, but there is a part of me that yearns for completion. In that sense, I enjoy the idea of “collecting” an album's live performance, in other words, hearing all of the songs on an album played live; not all in one night or in order, but over the years.

paul_guyet
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Gnod R&D Takeover - The Golden Cabinet, Shipley
Gnod R&D Takeover - The Golden Cabinet, Shipley
Alternative Music - Gig Reviews - Soundblab

Gnod R&D Takeover - The Golden Cabinet, Shipley

Light those birthday candles because The Golden Cabinet is celebrating 5 years in the business. Nestled away in Shipley the Cabinet has quietly (well, noisily if you attend the actual events) become West Yorkshire’s finest night for experimental music, attracting a plethora of sonic innovators and dancefloor shakers to the unassuming Kirkgate Centre.

Andy Brown
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Austin City Limits Festival 2018 - Day 2
Austin City Limits Festival 2018 - Day 2
Alternative Music - Gig Reviews - Soundblab

Austin City Limits Festival 2018 - Day 2

After a loaded Day 1, the second day of the festival promised a more concentrated list of highly diverse talents.  The prior day had us crisscrossing amongst the seven stages, not stopping at many twice.  Saturday kept us in the Western most section of the event, which was thankfully also where the best appointed Press Lounge we have experienced was located.  This provided for some much needed down time in the peak heat of the day. 

Mark Moody
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Robyn Hitchcock - Bowery Ballroom, New York
Robyn Hitchcock - Bowery Ballroom, New York
Alternative Music - Gig Reviews - Soundblab

Robyn Hitchcock - Bowery Ballroom, New York

There's a reason why I never try to miss Robyn Hitchcock when he hits town. He never puts on a bad show. The past three times I've seen have been solo acoustic gigs, all of which had their fair share of surprises. This time, Mr. Hitchcock was backed by a trio going by the moniker, The Nashville Fabs. The results were suitably fab.

Kevin Orton
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Nine Inch Nails - Radio City Music Hall, New York (Night 2)
Nine Inch Nails - Radio City Music Hall, New York (Night 2)
Alternative Music - Gig Reviews - Soundblab

Nine Inch Nails - Radio City Music Hall, New York [Night 2]

Back in May, when tickets for Nine Inch Nails’ Cold And Black And Infinite tour went on sale only at the box offices of the venues where the handful of shows were being held, there was a poster for sale listing the locations of this so-called “Physical World” pre-sale event. Last month, once the tour had started, there was a different poster available at the shows. When the two posters were laid next to one another, it completed a larger image; it turned out each poster was only half of the full picture.

paul_guyet
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Austin City Limits Festival 2018 - Day 1
Austin City Limits Festival 2018 - Day 1
Alternative Music - Gig Reviews - Soundblab

Austin City Limits Festival 2018 - Day 1

What better way to kick-off my fourth trip to the Austin City Limits Festival than a bona fide private party for friends and press the night before the three-day event.  It’s always great to be back in my home state (and Austin in particular), so to be invited to BMI Records’ shindig at YETI world headquarters had me feeling back home in no time.  The gracious folks at BMI lined up two ACL acts, Mt. Joy and Nicole Atkins, for the cozy crowd. 

Mark Moody
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Janelle Monáe - Starlight Theater, Kansas City
Janelle Monáe - Starlight Theater, Kansas City
Alternative Music - Gig Reviews - Soundblab

Janelle Monáe - Starlight Theater, Kansas City

I can’t think of too many artists who have had a better 2018 than Janelle Monáe. Hot on the heels of her critically acclaimed third album Dirty Computer, Monáe has climbed the ladder rapidly over the last 10 years since she started selling mixtapes out of the trunk of her car in Atlanta. She’s made the transition to movies (Oscar winners even), is often hailed for her unique fashion sense, and worked with her idol Prince to craft shimmering pop-rock fused with R&B, just like the Purple One did.

Tim Sentz
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