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.
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
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.
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.
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.
It was a homecoming of sorts for up and coming group Hypoluxo Sunday night as they highlighted an evening of music at St. Petersburg’s Green Bench Brewing Company. The guys in the group all hail from Florida, but are currently residing in the musical hotbed of Brooklyn. The band is on tour supporting their LP, “Running On A Fence”, and their set list consisted of cuts from that freshly minted disc.
God: Noah, in two days-time, I’m going to send a torrential flood brought forth by rain. It will drown everything out, so you need to build an ark. This ark will need to house every living animal and a couple of your friends. Also, the band The National will need room for their equipment.
There’s nothing quite like some unexpected dancing to pull you out of a slump but more of that later. It’s Saturday night and Portland’s indie-folk outfit Horse Feathers has just rolled into town in support of their brand new LP, Appreciation. Here’s hoping the crowd at Hyde Park Book Club appreciate what they do (see what I did there?)
Making their first foray into Florida on a three-night run and whether they knew it or not, Madrid based Hinds fittingly dropped into the heart of Tampa’s Spanish heritage in Ybor City. For a Tuesday night, the cozy confines of indie stalwart Crowbar filled in pretty well by the time our heroes took the stage. The crowd up front, in particular, was pretty frenzied after hanging with the band in the club’s courtyard.
The premise is simple, playing on the age-old showbiz strapline of the time limited offer, 'For One Night Only', Soft Cell return after 14 years for their apparent last stand. In the age of often justified cynicism, it's already been questioned whether this really is the last time, who knows, it certainly felt like a final celebration.
First, a bit of full disclosure. I am a big fan of Josh Tillman’s music. Father John Misty, as he has called himself for four albums now, brought me out of a darn near twenty year funk of basically ignoring what passed for popular music during that time. When I first heard the otherworldly melodies in conjunction with intelligent, though sometimes strange, lyrics, that showed up on “Fear Fun”, I was hooked like a largemouth in a catch-and-release pond. These sounds took me back to my much younger days when true melody seemed to be everywhere on the FM dial.