Recent Posts in pictures

September 19, 2014

photos by Amanda Hatfield

Half Waif at Glasslands - 9/18/14
Half Waif

Brooklyn art pop musician Half Waif is a regular on the local live scene. She played two hometown shows this week, including one at Rooftop Films this past Monday and another at Glasslands last night (9/18). At last night's show she was joined by Pinegrove, Una Lux and Poor Remy. Pictures of all four are in this post and continue below...

Continue reading "Half Waif @ Glasslands w/ Pinegrove, Una Lux & Poor Remy (pics)"

photos by Erik Erikson

Bear in Heaven @ MHOW 9/17/2014
Bear in Heaven
Bear in Heaven

Was it less of a challenge to create things intuitively without agonizing over them?

JP: Oddly not. It's like when you do things like that, other things become challenging. Most of our songs are, at first inception, generally layered--lots and lots of stuff going on, lots of parts. And then as we went on making it, we just kept pulling parts out, pulling sounds out. I think by the time we were done, we really got to the point where we were like, "We're sort of at the core of this music." That's what we were looking for--trying to find the center.

It's tricky, you know, because we historically are this band who sort of, like, have big sound, you know, lots of things going on. So to do something going in the opposite direction, it's a little frightening. The last song on our record starts a cappella. Playing it live, it's crazy. - [Columbia Spectator]

Bear in Heaven wrapped up their North American tour for their new album with two shows in NYC: Tuesday (9/16) at Bowery Ballroom and then Wednesday (9/17) on their home turf of Music Hall of Williamsburg. Opening both shows were the well-matched, vibe-wise, fellow Brooklynites Young Magic and WIFE (the electronic solo project from Altar of Plagues frontman James Kelly). Pictures from the night are in this post.

WIFE snuck in a third show while here, playing very late at Baby's All Right last night / this morning. Anybody check that out? More pics from Wednesday's MHOW show below...

Continue reading "Bear in Heaven finished their tour with two NYC shows with Young Magic and WIFE (pics from MHOW)"

photos by Ebru Yildiz

Ty Segall @ Webster Hall 9/20/2014
Ty Segall
Ty Segall
Ty Segall

Segall's frequent glam-rock references were dusted through the set like a fine layer of glitter; Cronin wore shiny blue facepaint; the crop-circle-esque Manipulator logo provided a backdrop on the Webster stage and adorned Segall's all-white ensemble. But the sonic focus was on those blistering guitar solos that populate so many of the tracks on Manipulator. Segall's fingers only left his strings for an occasional fist-pump or finger-point into the churning crowd. There were very few moments the audience was not wont to mosh, and mosh they did.

Though barricades around the photo pit are customary at Webster Hall shows, neither were present on Thursday. That's because Wednesday's attendees obliterated them, and perhaps management thought it best to forgo setting them up again only to have them ignored. So the stream of kids jumping onstage only to jump off a few seconds later was pretty much constant, including one flannel-clad guy very dedicated to a '90s state of mind who must have made the leap a dozen or so times in the last half of the 20-odd song set. - [Village Voice]

Last night (9/18), Ty Segall played his second of two Webster Hall shows which was just as bonkers as the first night, with a constant stream of (gentle) stage divers and crowdsurfers, including Ty himself where atop the audience he sang his last song of the night.

Thursday was also the first night of the tour's second leg which is with Seattle's charming surf rockers La Luz. Pictures from their set, and more of Ty's set, below...

Continue reading "Ty Segall wrapped up his wild two-night stay at Webster Hall (pics with night 2 openers La Luz)"

September 18, 2014

photos by Amanda Hatfield

"'Actively Trying Not To Cry At The @SLOWCLUBHQ Concert: A Magan Carrigan Story'" - @FromMagan

"There was a group of five bro's ROCKING OUT to @SLOWCLUBHQ tonight. It was kind of adorable." - @FilmicMan

Slow Club @ Bowery Ballroom 9/17/2014
Slow Club

Slow Club are currently on tour supporting their new album, Complete Surrender, which came out earlier this summer. That tour hit NYC last night (9/17) at Bowery Ballroom. Now that they're no longer a duo, Rebecca Taylor only spends part of the set behind the drumkit, but plays the frontperson role well with lots of humor. (There was a fair amount of instrument-switching.) Pictures from the Bowery are in this post.

Opening the night were Margaret Glaspy and Nick Mulvey, the latter of whom is up for the 2014 Mercury Prize for his album, First Mind. (Stream it via Rdio.) Nick played solo but said he hopes to come back in 2015 with a full band.

More pictures below...

Continue reading "Slow Club played Bowery Ballroom with Mercury Prize nominee Nick Mulvey, and Margaret Glaspy (pics)"

photos by Mimi Hong, words by Andrew Sacher

Joyce Manor @ Bowery Ballroom - 9/15/14
Joyce Manor

It was only two years and one album ago that Joyce Manor were in NYC to play the small Bushwick punk venue Acheron, but they've come a long way in that time. They returned earlier this week (9/15) to headline the much bigger and sold-out Bowery Ballroom on their proper tour for their excellent third album Never Hungover Again (following a record release show at Rough Trade in July), and they had the same command over the place that they had in that tiny punk club. Joyce Manor haven't changed too much in that time, they just keep refining their already-great sound and continue to gain more fans along the way who really seem into everything they've done. I was talking to a friend at the show about how interesting it was to see so many people walking away from the merch table with their first album. On a similar note, Joyce could encore with two songs from their 2010 EP, "Five Beer Plan" and "Leather Jacket" (the latter also from the 2011 LP), and get the same tremendous response from the crowd they got from pre-encore set closer "Schley" off the new album.

Really everything in their 18-song set of mostly one to two-and-a-half minute songs got a tremendous response, and rightfully so because the band was in such killer form. They've got the stage presence of a band who seem destined to only keep getting bigger, but you can tell they came up playing house shows. And those DIY roots are no doubt part of what makes them so effortlessly tight. There's no mistaking the difference between Joyce Manor finally playing to sold-out crowds of that size and an artist whose live debut is to one.

Joyce Manor are also one of a handful of punk bands I've seen this year (including Titus Andronicus, Joanna Gruesome and others) who took a stand during their set against particular moshers sacrificing the comfort of others for their own good time. They singled out a dude for using a girl's face to prop himself up above the crowd, and when he ran up on stage to stage dive they pushed him off to the side so a bouncer could quickly grab him and remove him. A short speech about why they did what they did followed and was only met by cheers from the rest of the crowd.

Pictures of the Bowery Ballroom show, including Joyce Manor's tourmates The Exquisites and openers Mike Bell & the Movies are in this post. They continue, with Joyce's setlist, below...

Continue reading "Joyce Manor played Bowery Ballroom w/ The Exquisites and Mike Bell & the Movies (pics, setlist)"

photos Kenneth Bachor

"Public Enemy verbally assaulted my consciousness and tore the roof off the Brooklyn Bowl last night. Epic." - Adam Levy

Public Enemy
Public Enemy

Hip hop legends Public Enemy have been laying low this year, but they did grace their hometown with a Brooklyn Bowl show this past Tuesday (9/16). Opening the show was PE2.0, which includes Public Enemy's rhythm section, and a set from Hank Shocklee of frequent PE collaborators Bomb Squad. PE packed their set with tons of favorites like "Fight the Power," "Bring the Noise," "Don't Believe the Hype," and plenty more. Did you catch the show? How was it?

More pictures and a couple videos below...

Continue reading "Public Enemy played Brooklyn Bowl with PE2.0 and Hank Schocklee of the Bomb Squad (pics & videos)"

September 17, 2014

photos by Greg Cristman, words by Andrew Sacher

Whirr / Sannhet / Cloakroom @ The Studio at Webster Hall - 9/16/14

Whirr and Cloakroom's ongoing tour hit NYC last night (9/16) at The Studio at Webster Hall with Sannhet and Sad Actor for a quadruple onslaught of distortion, reverb and lots of volume. Philly's Sad Actor kicked things off with their grungy jams, and their songs are good but they aren't quite there as a live band yet. Still, it was promising stuff and a good start to the night.

Cloakroom followed with a set of a lot of new songs (they've got a double LP coming next year on Run for Cover) and a bit from their 2013 debut, and they were thunderous. When I wrote about their debut last year, I said it sounded like if Mineral were more into sludge metal, but last night was my first time seeing them live and I never realized just how sludge metal Cloakroom can get. Their riffs are huge, covered in thick distortion, and the whole band crushes. They didn't say much on stage, and had samples going between most of their songs, so the whole thing was just a force.

For the second band on a four band bill, Cloakroom's a tough act to follow but Sannhet, the local representation for the night, got up and kept the sensory overload going. Like they usually do, they played mostly in the dark with flashes of a white light show, and their instrumental post rock/post metal was as equally pretty and heavy as ever. Unfortunately, the night didn't end well for them when their bass was stolen after their set.

Finally, Whirr wrapped up the show. I'd seen Whirr guitarist Nick Bassett play a few times in Nothing but last night was actually my first time getting to see Whirr. Like Nothing, Whirr are shoegaze in sound but punk in approach, thrashing around on stage and sounding heavy as hell. They played with the lights even dimmer than Sannhet, but if you're looking for a light show, Whirr's not the band to see. All of their energy goes into creating a huge wall of sound. The vocals are barely audible, and individual guitar riffs only shine rarely, instead coming together to create a full-on attack that few modern shoegaze bands achieve. Oh yeah, and lots of long hair flying around.

More pictures of all four bands below...

Continue reading "Whirr, Sannhet, Cloakroom & Sad Actor took over The Studio at Webster Hall (pics)"

photos by Jay Thornton

Accept / Raven @ Gramercy Theatre - 9/15/14

After a very effective opening set from legendary nwobhm act RAVEN, ACCEPT stormed the stage blasting out the opening number from their latest CD "Blind Rage". This wasn't no oldies show metal brothers and sisters. Since regrouping after the exit of iconic frontman Udo Dirkschneider a few years ago with new vocalist NYC boy/ex-TT QUICK singer Mark Tornillo, guitarist and steward of the ACCEPT legacy Wolf Hoffman and his crew have released three stellar albums and raised hell all over the world. The classic ACCEPT sound was on brutally glorious display last night. The awesome mix of metallic operatic pomp and a vicious guitar assault is what makes ACCEPT the quintessential German metal band.

Almost half the set was from those more recent albums and the material - especially the brutal "Teutonic Terror" and WWII epic "Stalingrad" are every inch up to the quality of the classics like 'Losers And Winners". The band were in fantastic form and the sold out show's enthusiastic audience were very receptive to the newer songs. [Rock Shock Pop]

German speed/power/thrash metal pioneers Accept brought their current tour in support of this year's Blind Rage LP (their 3rd since reforming and 14th overall) with NWOBHM legends Raven (who also have a new album on the way) to NYC for a show at Gramercy Theatre this past Monday (9/15). They played a good chunk of the new LP plus plenty of old favorites like "Balls to the Wall," "Fast as a Shark," "Princess of the Dawn" and more. For Raven's shorter opening set, they didn't unveil the new material yet, instead sticking entirely to their early-mid '80s period. We've got a set of pictures of both bands in this post.

Raven will be back in NYC for a smaller show when their tour with Night Demon hits Saint Vitus on November 21. Still no ticket link for that show.

More pictures, and the setlists for both bands, below...

Continue reading "Accept & Raven played Gramercy Theatre (pics & setlists)"

September 16, 2014

"Chromeo turning Central Park into a dance party rn" - @chelawhita

"Saw @chromeo last night in Central Park. One of the most fun nights I've had in so long! Danced my bum off" - @jaglever

Chromeo / Big Freedia @ Central Park Summerstage 9/12/2014
Big Freedia

It was a long wait for Chromeo, but after an agonizing 30 minutes, white lights poured out from the stage in every direction, and with seemingly no transitional moment at all, Dave 1's guitar wailed from between the LEDs. Without warning, the concert was in full swing.

Dave 1 and P-Thugg are, if you'll excuse the phrase, groove-machines. DJ set or fully live, the two produce a sound that bounces across the stage, through the crowd, and right back to them again, forever fueling a cycle of funky, self-sustaining energy. [Village Voice]

Canadian dance-duo Chromeo brought their groove party tour to Central Park Summerstage with some help from New Orleans bounce music pioneer and twerkaholic Big Freedia on Friday (9/12), part of the tour. Playing tracks from this year's White Women and favorites like "Needy Girl," "Bonafide Lovin'" and "Sexy Socialite," plus a stunning light show, the duo certainly got the crowd moving. Pics from the show are in this post.

Chromeo recently earned a spot as a short-list nominee for this year's Polaris Prize competition alongside stiff competition from the likes of Arcade Fire, Drake, Mac Demarco and more. The set on Saturday was one of their last of the summer, only hitting Austin City Limits in October before getting off the road for a bit.

Opener Big Freedia, whose Fuse reality series just got picked up for two more seasons, gave a shout out from the Central Park stage to fellow bounce artist Nicky Da B who died earlier this month. NYC will more of Big Freedia on October 4 at Glasslands with Friendly Ghost and a DJ set from Le Chev. Tickets are on sale. In other news, look for Big Freedia's memoirs to be published in 2015.

All Big Freedia tour dates, plus more pics from the Summerstage show, below...

Continue reading "Chromeo played Summerstage with Big Freedia who's touring this fall, playing Glasslands (pics, dates)"

photos by James Richards IV, words by Zach Pollack & Milos Markicevic

Mineral / Patti Smith / Superchunk
Riot Fest 2014 - Day 3
Riot Fest 2014 - Day 3
Riot Fest 2014 - Day 3

Riot Fest Chicago wrapped up this past Sunday (9/14) with sets from The Cure, Weezer (playing Blue Album), Primus, Social Distortion, Cheap Trick (playing Heaven Tonight), Patti Smith, Mudhoney, Hot Snakes, Mineral, Lucero, Naked Raygun (playing Throb Throb), La Dispute, Superchunk, The Hold Steady, Kurt Vile, Bouncing Souls, The Front Bottoms, The Menzingers and many more.

I arrived at the final day of the festival to find New Jersey punk heroes The Bouncing Souls already on the Roots Stage, and NJ folk punks The Front Bottoms getting set to perform on the Rebel Stage. Having seen the former a few times, I went for the latter band and heard "Flashlight" as I approached the stage. Their early afternoon-yet-rabid crowd screamed the lyrics along to the song's stop-start chorus. The tongue-in-cheek Talon of the Hawk opener "Au Revoir (Adios)" came next, followed by mix of songs from that album and their 2011 self-titled LP. --ZP

Kurt Vile & The Violators were the next band I caught, over at the Riot Stage. Given that Sunday beared even better weather than Saturday had, opening with "Wakin on a Pretty Day" was an apt choice in full sun. The Violators proceeded to deliver a low-key and enjoyable set that touched on Wakin on a Pretty Daze, Smoke Ring for My Halo, and Childish Prodigy. After a bit of KV and co., I headed over to the Rebel Stage to catch The Hold Steady. The NYC crew kicked things off with "I Hope This Whole Thing Didn't Frighten You" from this year's Teeth Dreams, followed by the Boys and Girls in America favorite "Stuck Between Stations." The band flew by their usual M.O. -- flexing some muscle without coming off as too cheesy -- while pulling out tunes from their back catalog. --ZP

Next I went to catch Superchunk, and I arrived at the Riot Stage a bit prior to their set. In the meantime, I caught the last few songs of Billy Bragg's performance on the nearby Roots Stage. Before playing "The Milkman of Human Kindness," Bragg shared that he's out to become "the Pete Seegar of punk" and hopes to be performing into his 90s. He turned "There Is Power in a Union" into a sing-along and finished off with "A New England." Superchunk began with the No Pocky for Kitty tune "Cast Iron," followed by the one-two punch of "Digging For Something" and "FOH." It was back to No Pocky... for "Punch Me Harder," and then Mac asked the crowd to sing along during "Learned To Surf." "I'm gonna need you to repeat after me, in the age-old tradition of repeating after people on stage, he quipped. Their 11-song set came to a close with "Slack Motherfucker" into "Precision Auto." --ZP

Michigan post-hardcore crew La Dispute were up next at the far-from-everything Rock Stage. The four-piece were heavy on this year's great Rooms of the House, and began their 10-song set with "HUDSONVILLE, MI 1956," "Stay Happy There," and "First Reactions After Falling Through the Ice" from the LP falling within the first five they played. Their meditative grooves quickly won over the large crowd they had gathered at the stage. My next target after La Dispute was the Rise Stage, where whiskey-soaked Memphis crew Lucero would soon begin their late afternoon set. I only stuck around for a few songs, but I got to hear some of my favorites from the start, including "On My Way Downtown" into "Nights Like These." --ZP

La Dispute's crowd
Riot Fest 2014 - Day 3

After Lucero, it was back over to the Rock Stage for reunited Austin emo band Mineral. The band quietly took the stage and delivered an excellent set that was split evenly between their 1997 debut The Power of Failing and 1998's EndSerenading. Highlights included their heavier moments found within the brief "Five, Eight, & Ten," "For Ivadell," and "Gloria," and also the more subdued offerings like "Love Letter Typewriter." Mineral were one of the best emo bands out there, and it's great to see them return sounding great. --ZP

One of my most anticipated sets of the three-day fest was Patti Smith's 6PM performance on the Riot Stage. Patti was born in Chicago not all that far from the stage she occupied, and spoke about coming to the park with her mother as a very young child. She and her band opened with "Dancing Barefoot" into the Horses tune "Redondo Beach." A cover of John Lennon and Yoko Ono's "Beautiful Boy (Darling Boy)" came next, followed by "Pissing in a River." Along with a select few others, Patti Smith fully embodies the spirit of Riot Fest. --ZP

While Zach was over at Patti Smith on the Riot Stage, I was at the Rise Stage for Mudhoney. The grunge grandfathers ripped through their set and barely stopped to catch their breath. Drummer Dan Peters was a beast on drums throughout the set, and at one point the band even made way for a brief drum solo, bringing in the fuzz at the climax. You would think Mark Arm's vocal style would have wrecked his pipes after all these years but the guy sounded just as good as he did on the band's debut album. The definite highlight of set was the band's classic "Touch Me I'm Sick" which left everyone floored. --MM

If Patti Smith carries the ethos of Riot Fest, then Primus serve to represent the festival's large carnival presence. Les Claypool was transfixed on the ferris wheel he faced from the stage and spoke at length about how beautiful it was and how lucky they were to be performing near it. He later prompted guitarist Larry LaLonde to do a solo inspired by the wheel. Unlike when I saw them in 2013, Primus shed their jammy approach of late for the tighter feel of their early material. This shift was aided by stand-in timekeeper Danny Carey, who delivered a fast-handed, rigid performance. The trio opened with the Sailing the Seas of Cheese cut "Those Damned Blue-Collar Tweekers," followed by the driving LP number "Here Come the Bastards." The tweaky Brown Album song "Over the Falls" was also played, as well as more favorites like "My Name Is Mud," and set endcap "Jerry Was a Race Car Driver." --ZP

Weezer were one of the albums billed to play a classic album (The Blue Album), but first they warmed up with some of their more recent singles, steadily going back in time with each song. The band played "Pork and Beans," "Beverly Hills," "Island In The Sun," "Hash Pipe," "El Scorcho" and others before getting to 1994, the year of The Blue Album. Everything prior to The Blue Album's performance felt like filler as everyone, including myself, sang along to every Blue Album song, most loudly to "Buddy Holly" which some fans begged to be played again. Weezer performed flawlessly while their stage lights bathed everyone in blue light, keeping in theme of the album's color. It was amazing seeing the band perform The Blue Album-- one of my favorite 90s albums-- in its entirety. I only wish they could've squeezed in Pinkerton right after. --MM

Pics and review of day 1 are HERE and day 2 are HERE. More day 3 pictures below...

Continue reading "Riot Fest Chicago day 3 in pics (Weezer, Primus, Patti Smith, Mineral, Superchunk, Bouncing Souls, Hold Steady, more)"