Entries tagged with: Barclays Center

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photos by Dana (distortion) Yavin, words by Andrew Sacher

Arcade Fire @ Barclays Center - 8/24/14
AF
Arcade Fire

Arcade Fire completed the three-night Barclays Center run of their current tour last night (8/24). Like the first two, Dan Deacon and the reunited Unicorns opened, but this one was extra special because it also included an opening set from New York's legendary Television.

The Unicorns kicked things off early at 7:15 PM, and unfortunately the soon-to-be-filled venue was mostly empty for them, but this rare set (one of six dates they're playing this year) was a treat for those in attendance. They mostly stuck to material from their classic Who Will Cut Our Hair When We're Gone?, and despite Nick Diamonds and Alden Penner's more "serious" recent projects, they retained all the quirk from their Unicorns days for this show. Alden and Nick both ran around on stage, cracked jokes ("Some people have told us now that they've finally seen us they can die happy ... that is very accurate"), and seemed to be having a genuinely good time on stage playing those old songs. We certainly had a good time hearing them.

Television followed with an excellent set that included half of the classic Marquee Moon ("See No Evil," "Prove It," "Torn Curtain" and it's sprawling title track), but was more of a jammy psychedelic trip than a rehashing of old favorites. The band, whose lineup is 3/4 of the one that recorded Marquee Moon (Jimmy Rip in place of Richard Lloyd), are now almost 40 years past the release of that album and they don't perform all that frequently, but they were dead on last night. The interlocking guitar solos went on endlessly without dragging, and the rhythm section was locked in for all those jams. As improvisational as some of it sounded, parts like the ending of the instrumental break on "Marquee Moon" were exactly like the album. It was as powerful blasting from the stage at Barclays Center as it was the first time you heard it on record.

Immediately after Television's set, Dan Deacon got started on the small stage on the opposite end of the floor, hosting a huge dance competition on Barclays Center's ground floor which ended with the whole floor dancing. A second dance competition was then framed as a battle between Brooklyn DIY venue Death by Audio and NYC print-only show listings publication Showpaper. This was the second recent show we've attended that a now-big act playing to a lot of people in NYC gave props to Death by Audio from the stage (the last was Future Islands). Also spotted dancing in the crowd to Dan Deacon was fellow bald, bearded indie music maker Tim Harrington of Les Savy Fav (Dan thanked him at the end). Dan's set was both a fun/funny activity for the crowd and an entertaining precursor to what was to follow.

Arcade Fire then took the stage at 9:30 for a 2-hour set (encore included) which was all thrills. At least in the world of music blogs and music twitter, Arcade Fire have gotten more than a little criticism for the last year or so of their career, which has included an elongated album rollout, lots of costumes, cover songs, and other gimmicks. But last night's show was such a truly good time, you'd have to be bitterly cynical to have been there and felt otherwise. Yes, it is a huge spectacle built for the huge venues they now typically play (this was their third arena show of the weekend in Brooklyn, and all three were full), but they do it without falling into bombast.

One of Arcade Fire's first NYC shows was ten years ago at the tiny Mercury Lounge (October 2004 to be exact). Core members Win Butler, RĂ©gine Chassagne, Richard Reed Parry, William Butler, Jeremy Gara, Tim Kingsbury, and Sarah Neufeld were all on stage that night, and impressively they're all still there ten years later. This time around they're joined by multiple other musicians (including sax genius Colin Stetson who you can catch in a more intimate environment at Baby's All Right TONIGHT (8/25)), a few people in paper mache bobblehead masks, dancers, confetti, and an elaborate light show, but they make it all unmistakably their own. The Arcade Fire of 2004 may not have written the dance-heavy "Reflektor" or "Sprawl II," but when the Arcade Fire of 2014 plays them right next to "Rebellion (Lies)" and "No Cars Go," nothing sounds out of place. The setlist was heaviest on Reflektor and lightest on Neon Bible, but it mostly felt like a very well curated collection of the many sounds Arcade Fire have made over the years, each song flowing perfectly into the next.

You know by now that Arcade Fire have been doing location-specific covers on this whole tour, and with NY Dolls' David Johansen (as Buster Poindexter) joining them for a cover of "Hot Hot Hot" on Friday, followed by Marky Ramone joining for two Ramones songs on Saturday, and Television opening last night's show (not to mention Deborah Harry joining them at Coachella), it seemed like a pretty good bet that they'd keep the CBGB theme going for this final show. And they did. But Television, though their opening set fit the theme, did not end up being the guest. Win Butler, like Dan Deacon before him, did point out how amazing it was to play with Television though. In fact, Win said last night's show was the best lineup of bands they ever played with at one show.

Arcade Fire & David Byrne
Arcade Fire

The CBGB-themed cover ended up being Suicide's "Dream Baby Dream," after a fake-out of LCD Soundsystem's "All My Friends" playing through the PA as The Reflektors mimed the song from the smaller stage at the back of the floor. Nobody from Suicide joined them for this one, but they brought out Talking Head David Byrne (who was also on stage with Arcade Fire almost ten years ago) to sing guest vocals, complete with white face makeup on. It seemed like a good bet that David would be joining them when we heard he was spotted in the building, and we're pretty sure he was even out dancing in a mask to Dan Deacon. (There was a rumor they'd be covering Bruce Springsteen after someone got a hold of the setlist early, uploaded it to setlist.fm, and must have mistakenly not realized Bruce's recording of that song is in fact a Suicide cover.)

"Dream Baby Dream" segued into "Here Comes the Night Time," followed by "Normal Person" (which included Win singing "New York I love you, but you're bringing me down" over the intro, further teasing those of us who were hoping for a James Murphy cameo), and then the show ended with the longest-ever version of "Wake Up." Even after the song's huge ending and the crowd's applause, Win started singing the "whoa-oh, whoa-oh-oh-oh" part again as he and the band walked off stage, then the horn players joined back in, and the whole band proceeded to leave the stage in marching band fashion (the same way they had entered the venue 2 hours earlier) playing the song even once the PA was turned off until they fully exited the room.

Pictures of the third and final night are in this post (though unfortunately none of the openers this time). Saturday pictures HERE. Friday pictures HERE. More from Sunday, with a video of the Suicide cover and AF's setlist, below...

Continue reading "Arcade Fire complete Barclays Center run w/ David Byrne covering Suicide & Television opening (pics, video, setlist)"

photos by Mimi Hong

Arcade Fire / Dan Deacon's dance circle / The Unicorns @ Barclays Center - 8/23/14
Arcade Fire
Dan Deacon
The Unicorns

The three-night run at Barclays Center of Arcade Fire's current tour, continued last night (8/23), with Marky Ramone joining the band for two Ramones covers, following NY Dolls' David Johansen (as Buster Poindexter) joining them on night 1. Diffuser.fm writes:

Arcade Fire tried to trick the audience into thinking they'd be covering Talking Heads' 'Psycho Killer' (which would have been awesome). It didn't take long for the real band to walk on-stage, invite Ramone to sit behind the kit and rip into an encore no concertgoer will forget.

We think it's safe to say Arcade Fire frontman Win Butler won't soon forget it either. Near the finale of the show, he told the crowd, "Thanks to Marky Ramone. That was a dream come true."

You already got a chance to browse the setlist from last night, and now you can check out a video of the Ramones covers and pictures of the whole show in this post.

Like the previous night, the show began with a special set from the reunited Unicorns, and then Dan Deacon did his thing, dance circles and all. The 3-night run wraps up tonight (8/24), and in addition to those two openers will include a set from CBGB vets Television. Tickets for tonight's show are still available. Starts at 7:30.

More night 2 pictures and the Ramones covers video, below...

Continue reading "Arcade Fire continued their 3-night run at Barclays Center w/ Unicorns & Dan Deacon, wrap up tonight (night 2 pics, video)"

Saturday night --- 8/23/2014 --- Arcade Fire Setlist
Ramones

Keeping the CBGB-special-guests-and-covers theme going in NYC, Arcade Fire brought out Marky Ramone to play drums on two Ramones covers during the encore tonight (Saturday) at Barclays Center in Brooklyn. The covers were "I Don't Wanna Go Down To The Basement" and "I Wanna Be Sedated". Right before that there was a tribute to the Talking Heads which included "Psycho Killer" playing while a "Stop Making Sense" David Byrne video-head character came out on stage in a suit with a boombox by his side (they've also played with the real David Byrne before). You can see the full night's setlist above.

Marky Ramone started drumming for the Ramones after original member Tommy Ramone left the band in 1978. Tommy, the last living original member of the band, died earlier this summer.

Friday night's Brooklyn Arcade Fire show featured special guest David Johansen of the NY Dolls (as Buster Poindexter). Sunday's show has Television opening, and Arcade Fire promised more Sunday surprises from the stage tonight. Tickets are still on sale.

As mentioned yesterday, Arcade Fire also recently played with Blondie's Deborah Harry.

Check out our pictures from the Friday Brooklyn show. Stay tuned for our pictures from Saturday.

A photo of Win and Marky from the show's soundcheck, below...

Continue reading "Marky Ramone joined Arcade Fire for 2 Ramones covers Saturday @ Barclays Center (setlist)"

photos by Amanda Hatfield

Arcade Fire / Dan Deacon / The Unicorns @ Barclays Center 8/22/2014
Arcade Fire
Dan Deacon
The Unicorns
Arcade Fire

Arcade Fire kicked off their three-night stand at Brooklyn's sprawling Barclays Center last night (8/22). As mentioned, after the bobblehead version of the band appeared on a second platform to mime New York Dolls' "Personality Crisis," Arcade Fire brought out David Johansen in Buster Poindexter mode to perform his 1987 hit "Hot Hot Hot," complete with a conga line of more bobbleheads and carnival-goers that all ended up on the stage and stayed up there for the equally joyous "Here Comes the Night Time." The band's two-hour set hit on all four albums and in addition to "Hot Hot Hot" they worked in a bit of LCD Soundsystem's "All My Friends" with "Keep the Car Running." Pictures, video and setlist are in this post.

Dan Deacon kept the crowd entertained and engaged during his opening set, including one of his signature dance circle / danceoffs. The Unicorns, who reunited to open this tour, started off the evening by playing almost the entirety of 2003's Who Will Cut Our Hair When We're Gone?, which was just reissued. After the show, Win Butler invited everyone to stick around Barclays for a post-show dance party DJ'd by Pulp's Steve Mackey.

Arcade Fire, Dan Deacon and The Unicorns do it again at Barclays Center tonight (8/23) and on Sunday (8/24) NYC rock legends Television are added to the bill as well. Tickets to both are still available. More pics from Night 1, including people in costume, are below...

Continue reading "Arcade Fire kicked off three-night stand at Barclays Center with Dan Deacon and The Unicorns (pics, video)"

"Buster Poindexter on stage with @arcadefire marks the official end of the hipster era. Irony overload. #Barclays #brooklyn #Brilliant" - alex rappaport

Arcade Fire

I may be biased, but NY seems like the place to bring out your big special guests. I've been lucky enough to witness David Bowie and Talking Head David Byrne join Arcade Fire on NY stages in the past, and I had a feeling that after recently performing with Deborah Harry of Blondie and inviting Television to play with them on Sunday, that we were going to see some more CBGB legends involved as special guests at Barclays Center, at least in the form of the covers they perform each night on this tour.

Sure enough, Arcade Fire can now check another classic punk off their list. On their first of three nights at Barclays Center in Brooklyn -- unlike at most other tour stops, Arcade Fire brought out a special guest, and it was NY Dolls frontman David Johansen. There's a slight twist though; Johansen was playing as his '80s & '90s alter ego Buster Poindexter. They performed Poindexter hit "Hot Hot Hot" together during the encore. Check out a few videos and the whole setlist, below.

Our full set of pictures from Friday are HERE., including pics of openers Dan Deacon and the reunited Unicorns. Tickets are still available for Saturday and Sunday too.

UPDATE: Marky Ramone was the guest on Friday.

Video clips and Friday setlist below..

Continue reading "Arcade Fire joined by New York Doll David Johansen (aka Buster Poindexter) at Barclays Center (video & setlist)"

UnicornsUnicorns

The Unicorns are reissuing their seminal 2003 album, Who Will Cut Our Hair When We're Gone?, next week (8/26) and they've just shared one of its previously unreleased bonus tracks, "Let Me Sleep." Check it out below.

The band's few reunion dates include three Barclays Center shows with Arcade Fire and Dan Deacon (one of which is also with Television) in NYC this weekend. You can win tickets to the one with Television. Details below...

Continue reading "The Unicorns share bonus track from 'Who Will Cut Our Hair' reissue; NYC shows w/ Arcade Fire are this week (win tix)"

Weeknd

The Weeknd announced a four-date tour with support from Schoolboy Q and Jhene Aiko that begins in NYC this September. The R&B singer's last time headlining NYC was a 2-night stand at Radio City but he's now making the jump up to an arena for a show on September 19 at Barclays Center. Even with strong support like Schoolboy Q, that's a big jump! Tickets for the show are not on sale yet but should be soon via Ticketmaster. All dates are listed, with a stream of The Weeknd's brand new single "Often," below.

Schoolboy Q was just in NYC last night (6/25) to play Central Park Summerstage. He brought out tons of guests, including his Black Hippy partner Ab-Soul, who played material off his new album These Days..., members of A$AP Mob (including Rocky), Flatbush Zombies and Action Bronson. Did you go to the show? How was it?

The Weeknd's list of dates and new song, below...

Continue reading "The Weeknd touring w/ Schoolboy Q & Jhene Aiko, playing Barclays Center (dates); SBQ played Central Park"

Alden Penner & Nick Diamonds of The Unicorns in 2014 (via Unicorns Twitter)
Unicorns
photo by Laura Crapo

The Unicorns have been talking about a reunion but still nothing solidified as the bands' members continued to tour with their other projects. Now the reunion is official, as it was just announced they will open select dates on Arcade Fire's tour!! Those dates include all three shows at Brooklyn's Barclays Center (Aug. 22, 23 & 24) and two at Inglewood, CA's The Forum. Dan Deacon opens all those shows and other Arcade Fire dates as well. Tickets for the Barclays Center shows are still available. All dates are listed below.

In January 2004 we caught the very-hyped Unicorns at a super packed Southpaw on 5th Ave in Park Slope. Fellow Canadians Arcade Fire weren't even on anyone's radar yet, but would soon take the indie rock world by storm. In November of that year, Arcade Fire and the Unicorns headlined Bowery Ballroom two days apart, but the Unicorns soon went the way of the unicorn. Eventually Southpaw went away too. Arcade Fire kept getting bigger and bigger and bigger, and then appeared a giant basketball arena called the Barclays Center just a few blocks away from where Southpaw once stood, co-owned by Jay-Z. Arcade Fire, who love basketball and attend secret Illuminati events with Jay-Z and the president, announced a few shows there. Then suddenly, like the Illuminati, Unicorns became real again.

Post-Unicorns project Islands are touring after that as well.

Continue reading "The Unicorns officially reuniting, opening for Arcade Fire! (including all 3 Barclays Center shows with Dan Deacon too)"

Morrissey in Austin last month (more by Tim Griffin)
Morrissey

"It is with great sadness that the remainder of the US Tour has been cancelled. The respiratory infection Morrissey contracted in Miami has worsened, and in the interest of making a full recovery, all further touring plans have been halted. Morrissey thanks his fans for their compassion, understanding, and well-wishes during this difficult period as he recuperates. "

PREVIOUSLY::
Morrissey postpones more tour dates
Morrissey canceled Atlanta show due to illness, postpones Friday's Atlantic City show

The Black Keys at Roseland Ballroom in January (more by Chad Kamenshine)
Black Keys

The Black Keys, who have a new album Turn Blue (due out 5/13 via Nonesuch) and an SNL appearance on the way, just announced a massive tour, which has them at arenas across the US and Canada from September through December. Many of the dates are with St. Vincent, but unfortunately not the NYC date happening on September 24 at Barclays Center, which is with Cage the Elephant.

Tickets for that show go on sale Friday, May 16 at 10 AM with a Citi presale starting Tuesday (5/13) at 10 AM, a Facebook presale starting Wednesday (5/14) at 10 AM, and a Live Nation presale starting Thursday (5/15) at 10 AM.

All dates are listed, with a track from the new album, below...

Continue reading "Black Keys announce tour, playing Barclays Center (dates)"


After the Rock and Rall Hall of Fame induction at Barclays Center, "Nirvana" headed over to Saint Vitus for another show.

Actually it's happening right this second (2:30am Thursday night). Follow @BrooklynVegan on Twitter for more. UPDATE: 4am: It's over.

Joan Jett, J. Mascis, Annie Clark aka St. Vincent, John McCauley of Deer Tick (and Deervana when Deer Tick is a Nirvana cover band), and Kim Gordon fronted Nirvana (aka Dave Grohl, Krist Novoselic and Pat Smear) at the gig.

More photos, video setlist from the surprise Greenpoint gig, below...

Continue reading "'Nirvana' & guests played Saint Vitus after Barclays Center! (video, pics, setlist)"

"Nirvana inducted in the Rock n Roll HOF tonight. Joan Jetted sang "Teen Spirit" Kim Gordon sang "Aneurysm" and Annie Clark sang "Lithium"" - Jody H

"Lorde joins Nirvana, St. Vincent and Kim Gordon for "All Apologies" - Rock Hall



And THEN THEY PLAYED SAINT VITUS.

More pictures from Barclays Center in Brooklyn below...

Continue reading "Kim Gordon, St. Vincent, Lorde & Joan Jett fronted Nirvana @ the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Induction @ Barclays Center"

JT at MSG in February (more by Dana (distortion) Yavin)
JT

Justin Timberlake will continue to support The 20/20 Experience on yet another tour with newly-announced North American dates to go down this fall. He returns to Brooklyn's Barclays Center on December 14. Tickets for the new dates go on sale Monday, April 14 at 10 AM, and there's a fan presale starting Tuesday (4/8).

All dates are listed below...

Continue reading "Justin Timberlake expands tour, playing Barclays Center again"

ennio-morricone

As discussed, legendary composer Ennio Morricone was slated to hit North America later this month for a pair of select shows--one at LA's Nokia Theatre at L.A. Live on March 20 and one at the Barclays Center's Cushman and Wakefield Theatre on March 23. Those concerts have now been postponed until June--Brooklyn on June 13 and LA on June 15. Additional tickets for his Barclay's Center performance are on sale now. BAMcinématek's "The Music of Morricone" film series will run as planned from March 20-22.

Streams of a few of Morricone's classic scores lie after the jump...

Continue reading "Ennio Morricone postpones Brooklyn & LA concerts"

IMAGE
IMAGE

If there was any doubt that Game of Thrones is insanely popular, that early screening of the Season 4 premiere at Barclays Center sold out (7000 tickets) almost instantly. Did you get tickets? (Or try?) Meanwhile, you can still get tickets to Arcade Fire at Barclays, and for the event pictured above.

The rest of us will have to wait till April 9 when it airs on HBO. That Catch the Throne hip hop mixtape drops on Friday (3/7) but you can stream Big Boi's contribution, "Mother of Dragons," and watch a couple S4 teasers, below...

Continue reading "'Game of Thrones' premiere at Barclays sold out in 30 mins ++ listen to Big Boi's track from 'Catch the Throne' mixtape"

Nirvana

As mentioned, this year's Rock and Roll of Fame induction ceremony happens in NYC on April 10 at Barclays Center with Nirvana, Kiss, Peter Gabriel, Hall and Oates, Cat Stevens and Linda Ronstadt all being inducted. Since we last spoke, ticket info has been announced, and if you'd like to go, you can get tickets on Saturday, March 1 at 10 AM. There's also a Rock and Roll Hall of Fame member presale starting Friday (2/21) at 10 AM and AmEx/VIP package presales starting Monday (2/24) at 9 AM.

Meanwhile, Paul Stanley of Kiss doesn't care much about being inducted. He slammed the Rock Hall in a recent interview with Classic Rock Magazine:

Did you feel honoured at being inducted in the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame?

No, it was done begrudgingly and because it had become absolutely ludicrous that they were choosing to ignore us. At the end of the day most people don't realise that the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame was a privately created establishment and that it has a self-appointed board. It's a perfect case of perception becoming reality. People heard 'Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame' and gave it credibility. So whether it deserves the title has to be weighed against who it inducts.

Read more of his feelings on it at Classic Rock Magazine.

Courtney Love also discussed the ceremony in a recent interview with Access Hollywood. She brought up her ongoing feud with Dave Grohl, saying "We're going to go to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and I think we're all sitting at the same table." She said she would say hi to Grohl, but that it'd be awkward. You can watch the video of that interview below.

Continue reading "Rock & Roll Hall of Fame update: Barclays Center tickets, Paul Stanley's negative rant & Courtney Love too"

photos by Adela Loconte

RHCP @ Barclays Center - 2/1/14
Red Hot Chili Peppers
Red Hot Chili Peppers

Red Hot Chili Peppers came to NYC for Super Bowl weekend, playing a WFAN-presented pre-game show at Barclays Center on Saturday (2/1) with MS MR, J. Roddy Walston & the Business, New Politics and Basic Vacation, before "crashing" Bruno Mars' halftime show to play "Give It Away." A Rolling Stone review of the Barclays show points out that Flea said it was "one last blowout" before they "go into a period of hibernation and make a new record." The review continues:

Even though the band's first record turns 30 this year, it focused its set list on the last decade or so. The Chili Peppers' cover of Stevie Wonder's "Higher Ground" - a punky highlight in the show - was the only Eighties song the group played. Instead they focused on hits ("Under the Bridge," "Californication") and the finer points of their most recent album, 2011's I'm With You, like the sex-charged "The Adventures of Rain Dance Maggie." It was a party.
Pictures of all five bands from the Barclays show are in this post.

More pics, RHCP's setlist, and a video of them playing with Bruno Mars during the halftime show in case you need to see that again, below...

Continue reading "Red Hot Chili Peppers played Barclays Center before the Super Bowl (pics, video & setlist)"

Blondie in NJ in 2012 (more by Dana (distortion) Yavin)
Blondie

We just posted an update to the Amnesty International Rights Concert, happening at Brooklyn's Barclays Center on Wednesday (2/5), that Madonna will be introducing the members of Pussy Riot at the event, and there's since been another update.

NYC punk legends Blondie, who also play a free Super Bowl weekend show on Saturday (2/1) and SXSW, have been added as performers to the event. Bob Geldof (lead singer of The Boomtown Rats and Band Aid/Live Aid organizer) has been added as performer as well.

Additionally, Yoko Ono (who like Madonna, was at the Grammys) will be appearing, and there will be pre-taped video messages from Peter Gabriel and Sting.

Previously announced performers include The Flaming Lips, Lauryn Hill, Tegan & Sara, Cold War Kids, Cake, and others. Ticekts are still available.

Madonna at MSG in 2012 (more by Dana (distortion) Yavin)
Madonna

As discussed, members of Pussy Riot will be appearing in Brooklyn for the upcoming Amnesty International Human Rights Concert happening on February 5 at Barclays Center, which also features The Flaming Lips, Lauryn Hill, Tegan & Sara, Cold War Kids, Cake, and others.

Since we last spoke, it's been announced that Madonna, who just performed at the Grammys, will introduce the members at the concert. She said in a statement:

I am honored to introduce my fellow freedom fighters Masha and Nadya from Pussy Riot. I have admired their courage and have long supported their commitment and the sacrifices they have made in the name of freedom of expression and human rights.
Tickets are still available.

Pussy Riot

We already mentioned the Amnesty International Human Rights Concert would be going down in Brooklyn on February 5 at Barclays Center with The Flaming Lips, Lauryn Hill, Tegan & Sara, and others, and there's just been a very interesting addition:

Members of the Russian art collective Pussy Riot, who were recently freed from prison after 21 months, will participate in Amnesty International's landmark Bringing Human Rights Home concert at Barclays Center in Brooklyn on February 5, Amnesty International announced Tuesday.

"We are happy to support Amnesty International's work on behalf of human rights and political prisoners," said Nadezhda Tolokonnikova and Maria Alekhina, whose imprisonment was the subject of hundreds of thousands of online actions by Amnesty activists after they were jailed for publicly criticizing Putin in a church. "We, more than anyone, understand how important Amnesty's work is in connecting activists to prisoners."

"A month ago we were freed from Russian prison camps. We will never forget what it's like to be in prison after a political conviction. We have vowed to continue helping those who remain behind bars and we hope to see you all at the Amnesty International concert on February 5th in Brooklyn!"

Pussy Riot's Nadezhda "Nadya" Tolokonnikova and Maria "Masha" Alekhina, who are now working to improve conditions for prisoners in the Russian penal colony system, will address attendees at the concert to raise awareness about prisoners of conscience--people who have chosen a non-violent path yet are jailed for their beliefs, color of skin, gender, or sexual orientation, and whose rights Amnesty has championed throughout its 50-year history. The star-studded lineup includes The Flaming Lips, Imagine Dragons, Ms. Lauryn Hill, Tegan and Sara, The Fray, Cold War Kids, Colbie Caillat, Cake and more yet to be announced.

"Today, as we work to improve human rights conditions in the United States, we can't abandon the fight for the rights of imperiled individuals around the world," said Amnesty International USA Executive Director Steven W. Hawkins. "When we come together on February 5 in Brooklyn, our voices will be amplified by the presence of Pussy Riot, who continue to demonstrate the power we share when we take a stand against injustice. Join us next month and become a part of the next wave of the human rights movement."

Tickets are still available.

photos by P Squared Photography

Jay Z @ Barclays Center - 1/12/14
Jay Z
Jay Z

The show didn't feature an innovative stage design, as on Drake's recent tour. Neither did it include bejeweled masks, fancy dancers or a Jesus impersonator, a la Kanye West's crazy "Yeezus" show. Nor did it boast the presence of Justin Timberlake, who acted as a slick pop foil for the rapper during their co-headlining show at Yankee Stadium last summer.

For the first New York stop on Jay's "Magna Carter" tour, he played to his on-going strength - as a pure rapper, capable of fast-witted, and nuanced, verbal derring-do.

It wasn't just a smart move, it was probably a necessary one. At 44, the man born Shawn Carter doesn't have the young buck status Drake currently commands, or the cutting-edge outrage perfected by Kanye in his latest project. That leaves him to cut the precise figure he assumed at Barclays - as both an elder statesmen and a broad-minded observer of the world, refracted through the language of hip-hop. [NY Daily News]

Jay Z brought his Magna Carter World Tour to his hometown of Brooklyn for his first of two shows at Barclays Center (which he recently announced he'd be selling his stake in) last night (1/12). With roughly two decades of music including twelve studio albums and multiple collaborative recordings to pull from, Jay pretty much delivered hit after hit, with favorites like "99 Problems," "Dirt Off Your Shoulder," "Izzo," "Big Pimpin'," "Hard Knock Life," "Niggas In Paris" and tons more. Pictures from the show are in this post.

Jay does it again at Barclays Center tonight (1/13), and his tour includes other area dates at Mohegan Sun (1/17), Nassau Coliseum (1/19), and Prudential Center (1/22).

More pictures, along with a video and the setlist from last night, below...

Continue reading "Jay Z played Barclays Center (night 1 pics, video & setlist)"

The Flaming Lips in San Francisco on Halloween (more by Chris Tuite)
Flaming Lips

The Flaming Lips, Lauryn Hill, Tegan & Sara, Cold War Kids and Cake are among the artists announced for the next Amnesty International Human Rights Concert, which takes place this year at Brooklyn's Barclays Center on February 5. The concert also features Colbie Caillat, Imagine Dragons, The Fray, and other special guests. Tickets go on sale Saturday (1/11) at 10 AM with an AmEx presale starting Thursday (1/9) at 10 AM and an Internet presale starting Friday (1/10) at 10 AM.

Some background on the Amnesty concerts, via press release:

Twenty-five years after its initial concert series, which featured U2, Sting, Lou Reed and others, Amnesty International is bringing back the concert - with a digital twist - to raise awareness about human rights to a new generation. The Amnesty International Bringing Human Rights Home concert will use technology to connect the music and message in real time from the stage of the Barclays Center to activists across the globe.

"The fight for global human rights begins at home," said Steven W. Hawkins, executive director for Amnesty International USA. "This concert is part of an evolving conversation about human rights that grounds the universal struggle for dignity and freedom in the injustices we see every day in our own backyard in the United States. We're bringing back the concerts to show a new generation of activists how to stand up for justice at home and abroad - whether it is fighting for the right to voice dissent peacefully on social networks or in the streets, protecting the rights of women and girls, or standing in solidarity with individuals persecuted for who they are or what they believe."

Watch some recent Flaming Lips and Lauryn Hill videos below...

Continue reading "Flaming Lips, Lauryn Hill, Tegan & Sara and more playing Amnesty International concert at Barclays Center"

photos by PSquared Photography

Queens of the Stone Age & the Kills @ Barclays Center
Queens ofo the Stone Age
The Kills

As the house lights dimmed and a giant screen projected a 60-second countdown for fans to anticipate the arrival of Queens, they strolled on stage with instruments and drinks in hand and ripped it from the get-go. Opening with "You Think I Ain't Worth A Dollar, But I Feel Like A Millionaire," and then jumping right into "No One Knows," to the first ...Like Clockwork single, "My God is the Sun," they managed to extend each song a bit by jamming and feeding off each other's playing as if they were an improv jazz group that were using roaring guitars and thick bass rather than trumpets and saxophones. "We were in Boston last night," singer Josh Homme told the crowd, which was met with a chorus of boos, "Boston has a lot of rules. This is New York City, you have no rules. You are at a Queens show, you can do whatever you want," he said just before going into "Burn the Witch." It is with that mentality that has gotten Queens the respect they deserve over the years. They are one of the few rock and roll bands, that still know how to be rock stars. They may not be trashing hotel rooms or discussing their womanizing, but they can surely play as hard as they want and encourage their audience to live as hard as they want. [Huffington Post]
Queens of the Stone Age have had a big comeback year with ...Like Clockwork, the long-awaited followup to 2007's Era Vulgaris which reunited many of the musicians who were on the mega-popular Songs for the Deaf and ended up on many Best of 2013 lists, as well as being nominated for a Grammy. Around the time of its release, they played an intimate Brooklyn show at Brooklyn Masonic Temple, but over the weekend (12/14) they had their real victory lap when they headlined the Barclays Center. Their friends The Kills opened, and pictures of both bands are in this post.

QOTSA also recently told us their favorite albums of 2013, and in other related news, both QOTSA and The Kills have members in The Dead Weather, who just released a new song.

More pictures from Barclays Center, along with QOTSA's setlist and a couple videos, below...

Continue reading "Queens of the Stone Age & The Kills @ Barclays Center (pics, videos & setlist)"

Nirvana

The Rock and Hall of Fame 2014 nominees were announced this past October, and now the inductees have been announced. Rolling Stone reports that Nirvana, Kiss, Peter Gabriel, Hall and Oates, Cat Stevens and Linda Ronstadt will all now be rock hall of famers. Additionally, The E Street Band will be presented with the Award for Musical Excellence, and Brian Epstein (Beatles manager) and Andrew Loog Oldham (original Rolling Stones manager) will both receive the Ahmet Ertegun Award for non-performers.

The induction ceremony takes place in Brooklyn on April 10 at Barclays Center, yet another high profile event happening at the new arena which also hosted the MTV Video Music Awards this year and which just announced a big show with Red Hot Chili Peppers. Tickets will be available in January, and it will air on HBO in May.

Nirvana's MTV Unplugged performance celebrated its 20th anniversary over the weekend. Watch that in full below...

Continue reading "Nirvana, Kiss, Peter Gabriel & others inducted into Rock and Roll Hall of Fame; ceremony happening at Barclays Center"

RHCP at Coachella 2013 (more by Wei Shi)
RHCP

The Red Hot Chili Peppers don't have much of a tour scheduled for 2014 at the moment besides some South American festivals, like Lollapalooza Chile & Argentina, but they've just added what appears to be a one-off in Brooklyn at Barclays Center on February 1. The night, presented by CBS sports station WFAN happens on the "biggest weekend in sports and entertainment" and is part of the venue's "Kickoff in Brooklyn" series which includes championship boxing (1/30) at the Nets vs Thunder game (1/31). Opening for the Chili Peppers at this big show will be MS MR, J. Roddy Walston & the Business, New Politics and Basic Vacation. Tickets for the show go on sale Friday (12/20) at 10 Am with an AmEx presale starting Tuesday (12/17) at 10 AM.

All upcoming RHCP dates are listed below...

Continue reading "Red Hot Chili Peppers playing Barclays Center w/ MS MR and others before South American festivals (dates)"

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