Entries tagged with: Ra Ra Riot

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The Kills at Terminal 5 in February (more by Devan Council)
The Kills

As mentioned, Montauk vacation spot The Surf Lodge is hosting shows (like the Dirty Projectors one in June) all summer. The summer is nearing its end, but there's still a handful of notable shows left taking place at the venue.

On August 11, Frankie Rose will play, the day after she opens for Little Dragon at Prospect Park (8/10). Then on August 18 it's Chairlift (who tour with The xx this fall) and a day later (8/19), The Kills will play, after playing their free Hudson River Park show (8/18) (which is "sold out"). As mentioned, Nite Jewel plays the Montak venue on August 25, and finally, Ra Ra Riot on September 1. More info at The Surf Lodge's website.


Firefly Music Festival goes down in Dover, Delaware from July 20-22 (which is only about a three hour drive from NYC). The lineup includes Jack White, The Flaming Lips, Passion Pit, The Black Keys, Polica, Cults, Death Cab for Cutie, Ra Ra Riot, The Felice Brothers, Mariachi El Bronx, Silversun Pickups, Lupe Fiasco, The Head and the Heart, Heartless Bastards, The Killers, John Legend, Bassnectar, Girl Talk, and more. Tickets for the fest are on sale now, and camping is available.

No schedule yet, but the full announced lineup is below...

Continue reading "Firefly Music Fest happens in Delaware --- 2012 dates & lineup (Jack White, Flaming Lips, Passion Pit, Black Keys, Polica, Cults, Death Cab & more)"

photos by Bryan Bruchman

Ra Ra Riot @ the Rock Shop
Ra Ra Riot

Ra Ra Riot played a last minute show at intimate Brooklyn club the Rock Shop last night (3/19). To quote their announcement, they "leave on Tuesday to record a new album and want to play you some new songs" before they go. Those new songs were performed in part by a new member of the band who it appears, at least for last night, has replaced Ali Lawn.

As advertised, the doors opened at 8pm and the show started at 9. They played the songs you can see listed below on the setlist and three more during an encore. All proceeds "will be donated to the Willie Mae Rock Camp for Girls." More pictures below...

Continue reading "Ra Ra Riot debuted new songs & a new member @ the Rock Shop (pics)"

Ra Ra Riot @ Fun Fun Fun Fest 2011 (more)
Ra Ra Riot

Ra Ra Riot, who no longer count Alexandra Lawn as a member, announced last night:

Dear NYC fans,

We leave on Tuesday to record a new album and want to play you some new songs before we go. Tomorrow night (Monday) we will be playing at the Rock Shop in Brooklyn. Doors at 8pm, show at 9pm.
Tickets are $10 and all proceeds will be donated to the Willie Mae Rock Camp for Girls. Show is 21+.

See ya tomorrow!

Ra Ra Riot

Tickets will be sold at the door.

Alexandra Lawn @ Fun Fun Fun Fest 2011
Ra Ra Riot

Oh no!

While this is not a 'goodbye', the time has come for me to leave Ra Ra Riot.

Thank you for the wonderful 6 years-- so many beautiful places visited, with incredible fans & close friends made along the way. I will carry on what I have learned from each and every one of you in future endeavors, whether it be music, becoming a pilot, or the next Iron Chef.

Playing music with Rebecca, Milo, Wes, Mathieu, John, Kenny, Gabriel, and Cameron has provided some very special opportunities in my life, alongside all the talented and amazing bands that have shared the stage with us throughout. I have learned so much from all of you, and most importantly, you have have taught me to strive every day to be a better musician and songwriter.

much love,

Alexandra Lawn

Countdown to news of a solo record?

The pictures in this post are previousy unposted pictures from Fun Fun Fun Fest 2011 which took place in Austin in November not long before the band played Metro in Chicago (pics at the link). Chicago was the fourth-to-last date of the band's November tour. They've maybe played a few shows since then, but not many. More (of these pictures from one of Ali's last shows with the band) below...

Continue reading "Ali Lawn leaves Ra Ra Riot!"

photos by Tim Griffin

Spoon @ Fun Fun Fun Fest
fun fun

Spoon had nothing to promote and no surplus of new songs to unveil. This was just an Austin band -- Austin's biggest indie band ever -- playing an Austin festival for their only major show of 2011 (at least so far). As a live unit, the four-piece that recorded Transmission (augmented here by an additional percussionist) is as precise as Spoon has ever been, cranking out savagely controlled, often slow-building versions of such songs as "Written in Reverse," "Delicate Places" and the instantaneously applauded "I Turn My Camera On." "We got horns!" frontman Britt Daniel proclaimed, bringing out a six-man section for "Cherry Bomb," "The Underdog" and "Jonathan Fisk." By the four-song encore, the crowd had both increased in enthusiasm and decreased in size -- no doubt some people had wandered to another stage to see the Damned, which Daniel himself had said he wished that he could do. [SPIN]
Personally I started at the Damned (who were great) and finished Saturday with about 30 minutes of Spoon which felt like the perfect chill ending to a long first-two-days of the outdoor Austin fest (right after their set I went back to the hotel, skipped all afterparties and crashed for 12 hours straight which made Sunday great).

Our first set of pictures from Saturday, Damned included, are HERE. Our second set continues, more of Spoon included, below...

Continue reading "Fun Fun Fun Fest 2011 -- Day 2 pics (part 2) -- Spoon, Tune-Yards, Ra Ra Riot, Tinariwen, Purity Ring & more"

photos by Dana (distortion) Yavin, words by BBG

Weeze & Matt & Kim @ Deluna Fest
Deluna Festival
Deluna Festival

Do you think Matt & Kim ever get depressed? Like down-in-the-dumps, face-on-the-bathroom-tile, razor-to-the-wrist bummed? And do you think any of that anger is channeled into their music in ways not visibly noticed? Is that perma-simpleton-smile actually a front for an aryan-supremacy agenda spelled out in morse code via the band's shiny light show? Head to a New Year's Eve celebration at Hammerstein Ballroom with Super Mash Brothers to do some investigation and report back if you come across some leads. Tickets are on sale. All of their dates are listed below.

Matt & Kim was one of many artists to perform in Florida at Deluna Fest from 10/14 - 10/16, joining names like Ra Ra Riot, Stars, Ladytron, Girl Talk, Weezer, Cake and others. Belated pictures from the first day of that festival that Jane's Addiction also played, are in this post. Many more below.

Ra Ra Riot has been touring since Deluna. They don't have anything scheduled in NYC, but they will be on the road for a while and all of their dates are also listed below...

Continue reading "Deluna Fest Day 1 pics w/ Weezer, Ladytron & many more, a Matt & Kim New Year's Eve show, Ra Ra Riot tour dates"

photos by Toby Tenenbaum, words by Andrew Sacher

"The highlight had to be Ra Ra Riot coming
on stage to "Raining Blood" \m/" - Debbie Encalada

Ra Ra Riot
Ra Ra Riot

Ra Ra Riot played a free Celebrate Brooklyn show, the second to last one of the summer, in Prospect Park Friday night (8/5) with support from Buke & Gass and Delicate Steve.

Buke & Gass kicked things off with their unique brand of avant-pop, driven by their self-built instruments and whatever percussion the duo can manage to pull off with their feet. The circumstances definitely weren't the best for the Brooklyn-based band, who were opening a large, sparsely filled out venue for a much poppier act. But given the attention they deserved, Buke & Gass were able to prove that they've got some really interesting material. The duo focus more on rhythm than melody (which are usually far off-kilter) and are able to loop you in to hypnotic patterns, somewhat similarly to tUnE-yArDs, who they have opened for. On top of the attractively unsettling chord progressions, singer Arone Dyer delivers with a surprisingly beautiful voice, unlike the howls of the aforementioned tUnE-yArDs' Merrill Garbus. As I said, the circumstances were not ideal, but I was definitely won over by their set and look forward to hopefully catching them in a smaller venue.

Their set was followed by Delicate Steve, who I first saw when they opened for Yeasayer at Governors Island last summer, and they haven't changed a bit. They played a mainly instrumental set which was sonically more fit for the jam scene, except for the fact that everything felt way too scripted. The band's bland chord progressions and overused jungle drum beats were added to only by uninspired, repetitive guitar solos.

At around 9 PM, the lights completely darkened and Slayer's "Raining Blood" blasted through the PA system as Ra Ra Riot ran out onto the stage. WIthout saying a word, Slayer faded out and Ra Ra Riot went directly into "Too Too Too Fast" off 2008's The Rhumb Line. The band played what they said may have been their longest set ever, which included most of both full lengths, a track off their self titled EP, and two covers. Save for a few exceptions, The Rhumb Line tracks stood out pretty significantly among the rest. The Orchard is a solid album start to finish, but many of the songs lack the urgency of their earlier material, which resonates so strongly in a live setting. When the band powered through classics like "Can You Tell," "Oh La," and "Ghost Under Rocks," the members were having so much fun on stage that you couldn't help but join them. They did hit some highs with the newer material though, notably on the Alexandra Lawn-fronted slow-burner "You And I Know" and when they closed their set with the frantic pop of "Boy." The band opened their two song encore with a cover of Steve Winwood's "Valerie," before diving into another standout, "Dying Is Fine," which saw singer Wes Miles run through the audience.

More pictures, videos, and Ra Ra's setlist from the show below...

Continue reading "Ra Ra Riot, Delicate Steve & Buke & Gass played Celebrate Brooklyn (pics, video & setlist)"


The MTK: Music To Know Festival planned for Saturday - Sunday, August 13 - 14, in East Hampton, New York, is cancelled. A statement is as follows:

"It is with heavy, heavy heart that we regret to inform you that the inaugural MTK: Music To Know Festival in East Hampton will not take place. Despite our unique vision and arranging a world-class line-up, ticket sales were not adequate to allow the event to continue. We wanted to let everyone know now before engaging more deeply.

Along with our ticket holders, vendors, sponsors, business associates, colleagues and friends in the community, we too are filled with deep disappointment. We pledge to endure during this difficult time with the same integrity and professionalism displayed throughout the creation of this event.

Ticket holders should check www.musictoknow.com next week for more information.

Strangely Escape to NY, the other new Hamptons music festival, is going on as planned as we speak. Patti Smith and Best Coast played it last night.

The MTK Fest's lineup included Vampire Weekend, Chromeo, Dawes, Bright Eyes, M Ward, Ra Ra Riot, Fitz and the Tantrums, Matt and Kim and more.

Truck America, another NY Festival, was cancelled last week (though no official announcement has been made about that yet).

photos by Eric Townsend, words by Andrew Sacher

Ra Ra Riot

Ra Ra Riot are currently on a massive tour (with Guster?) that brought them to Ives Concert Park in Danbury, CT last night (8/3). It rained pretty hard the entire ourdoor show but (Guster) crowd feedback seemed positive regardless. Check out more pictures of Ra Ra Riot's set below.

Ra Ra Riot won't open Guster's 8/8 Central Park Summerstage show with Jack's Mannequin and Boy & Bear, but you will be able to catch Ra Ra Riot in NYC this Friday (8/5) at the far more interesting (and free) Prospect Park Celebrate Brooklyn show with Buke & Gass and Delicate Steve. 7:00pm show / gates 6:00pm. Hopefully the weather is better than last night's rainy Sufjan Stevens show (which happened the same time as Ra Ra in CT).

In related news, Ra Ra Riot bassist Mathieu Santos released his debut solo LP Massachusetts 2010 this past Tuesday (8/2) via Barsuk. The album is named after the album track of the same name, which is a reworking of "Massachusetts" off Ra Ra Riot's most recent LP The Orchard. You can stream the entire album on Spinner and check out a video for album track "I Can Hear the Trains Coming" below. You can also purchase the album as LP and MP3 on Amazon. The whole thing pretty much sounds like Ra Ra Riot with a slightly different singer. So there's nothing too groundbreaking here, but it definitely makes for an enjoyable listen.

Album art, tracklist, video, dates, and more pics from the Ra Ra Riot show below...

Continue reading "Mathieu Santos released a solo LP, Ra Ra Riot played CT (pics), playing free show in Brooklyn Friday (and other dates)"


As mentioned, Music to Know Fest makes its debut in East Hampton, NY over the weekend of August 13-14, and features artists such as Vampire Weekend, Bright Eyes, Matt & Kim, Ra Ra Riot, Dawes, and others. Set times have been announced for the festival, which you can check out below.

MTK, not to be confused with Escape to NY, have also teamed up with MTA Long Island Railroad (LIRR) to add an official westbound train for concertgoers:

The train, departing from the LIRR East Hampton station at 10:56 PM, is aptly timed to ensure concert goers will have sufficient time to enjoy the day's line-up and festivities and will be making all the local stops on Long Island into Brooklyn and Manhattan.
For more fun, you can download the official MTK 2011 App for iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad at the iTunes app store. The fest also features fashion tents. According to a press release:
The fashion pop-up tents will be set up in a "retail village" and the merchants are anything but your average festival brands. Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen were first to purchase pop-ups from MTK: Music To Know - planning to debut their much-anticipated website StyleMint and their successful contemporary line Elizabeth & James to the crowd of almost 10,000 people gathered at the event in the Hamptons during the height of the season.
Hmmm... Tickets for the festival are still available. Set times and a list of the clothing brands that will be on display at the fest below...

Continue reading "East Hampton MTK Fest announces set times, a special LIRR train,... Mary-Kate & Ashley Olsen..."

Slayer at Izod Center (photos by Samantha Marble)

Slayer, Thee Oh Sees, Public Enemy, Girls, Danzig Legacy, (Danzig + Doyle von Frankenstein playing Misfits, Samhain & Danzig), Hot Snakes, Diplo, Major Lazer, Henry Rollins, Ted Leo & The Phramacists, Spank Rock, Murder City Devils, Hum, Lykke Li, Passion Pit, Four Tet, Rakim, The Damned, Austra, Purity Ring, and Flynt Flossy are just a few of the acts announced today as part of the Fun Fun Fun Fest 2011 lineup. Another amazing year! Check out the full lineup below and stay tuned for more announcements coming in August and September.

The new additions to the Austin, Texas festival, which takes place from 11/4 - 11/6, are in addition to the the previous "lineup leaks" that included Brian Posehn, Odd Future, Okkervil River, M83, X (performing "Los Angeles"), Reggie Watts, Flying Lotus, Tune-Yards, Ra Ra Riot, Kid Dynamite and others

2011 is the festival's sixth year, but first at its new home Auditorium Shores (no more Waterloo Park). Tickets are on sale now.

Slayer also has a NYC performance coming up with Metallica, Anthrax and Megadeth as part of the "Big Four" show at Yankee Stadium on 9/14. Tickets are still available.

Fun Fun Fun 2011 flyer and almost-full lineup is below.

Continue reading "Fun Fun Fun Fest 2011 lineup (Danzig Legazy, Passion Pit, Slayer, Lykke Li, The Damned, Henry Rollins & much more)"

by BBG


"Matt Talbott tells me there's some Hum shows coming this fall! I don't have all the details yet, but here's what I know: there will be one on September 10th, and it won't be in Champaign. A show in Champaign is possibly going to be planned for September 9th, and they are playing Fun Fun Fun Fest in Austin, TX in November." -[h-u-m.net]
The above quote comes from a Hum fansite, and while we have yet to receive official word, it does seem within the realm of possibility considering that Hum have reunited occaisionally since officially dissolving in 2000. More news to come.

Hum released You'd Prefer an Astronaut in 1995 and the follow-up Downward Is Heavenward in 1998.

Though they haven't confirmed Hum, Fun Fun Fun Fest did recently "leak" some more of their Austin festival lineup. The first leak had Brian Posehn, Odd Future, Okkervil River, M83, and X (performing "Los Angeles"). The second leak added Reggie Watts, Flying Lotus, Tune-Yards, Ra Ra Riot and Kid Dynamite!

That now makes two upcoming shows for Kid Dynamite who are also playing FYF Fest in LA.


Ted Leo, Clap Your Hands Say Yeah, Sun Airway, Booker T, Ra Ra Riot, and Emmylou Harris are some of the artists NPR is streaming from Camden, NJ (hear Philly) this weekend.

The Hold Steady at Fun Fun Fun Fest 2010 (more)
The Hold Steady

Last month, we announced that Truck America is returning to the Catskills in September (the 9th through the 11th) and will be headlined by The Hold Steady and Okkervil River. The only other confirmed bands at the time were Ra Ra Riot and Wye Oak. The lineup has since been updated to include Fruit Bats, Vetiver, The Felice Brothers, CItay, Gary Higgins, Lady Lamb the Beekeeper, Takka Takka, Hospitality, The Low Anthem and others. Check out the full list below. Early bird tickets are still on sale.

For The Low Anthem, it's one of many dates they just announced including one at Terminal 5 with Iron & Wine.

Speaking of The Hold Steady, frontman Craig Finn posted to his Tumblr that he's making a solo album:

"I'm in Austin TX for a few weeks. Making a record. Staying in a friend's guest house. Got here yesterday. So far so good. I'll be tracking the progress here."
He has also been tracking his progress on the Tumblr.

Check out the full Truck America lineup update below...

Continue reading "Truck America expands lineup, Craig Finn working on solo LP"

DOWNLOAD: Yellow Ostrich - "Mary" (Alternate) (MP3)

Yellow Ostrich at McCarren Park (more by Amanda Hatfield)
Yellow Ostrich

Yellow Ostrich will share dates with Ra Ra Riot and Delicate Steve in the coming months, and though they aren't on board to join the pair at Prospect Park on August 5th, the band will play an upcoming show at Glasslands on August 19th. Tickets are on sale though the rest of the Brooklyn bill is still TBA.

Just three days before that Glasslands appearance, Yellow Ostrich will welcome The Mistress on August 16th via Barsuk Records. Check out a new track from that LP, an alternate version of "Mary" (the original appears on the record as well), available above and streaming below alongside the cover art, full tracklist and all tour dates...

Continue reading "a new song from Yellow Ostrich's Barsuk debut (MP3 premiere, cover art & tour dates too)"

DOWNLOAD: Ra Ra Riot - "Too Dramatic" (Anamanaguchi Remix) (MP3)

Ra Ra Riot at MHOW last year (more by Amanda Hatfield)
Ra Ra Riot

Ra Ra Riot play Seattle's Capital Hill Block Party on Friday (7/22) to kick off a round of dates that include Fuji Rock in Japan before skipping to the East Coast for a string of dates that will include August 5th at Prospect Park Bandshell with Delicate Steve and Buke & Gass (FREE with suggested donation). The band will then prepare for additional dates across the US and in Canada that will stretch them into middle November with openers like Delicate Steve and Yellow Ostrich (who are also signed to Barsuk). Full tour schedule is below.

Ra Ra Riot recently had their track "Too Dramatic" given the 8-bit treatment by Anamanaguchi. Check out the remix (which makes its debut here) above and streamable below. Anamanaguchi play Music Hall of Williamsburg on 7/22 (Friday) with MATH The Band and Talk To Animals. Tickets are still available.

Yellow Ostrich has their own show coming up at Glasslands on August 19th.

All tour dates, the song stream and the video for the original is below.

Continue reading "Ra Ra Riot expand tour, got remixed by Anamanaguchi (MP3 premiere & updated tour dates)"

Truck America

The British music festival Truck Festival is returning to America again this year and back in the Catskills at Full Moon Resort in Big Indian, NY from September 9-11. This year's Truck America will be headlined by The Hold Steady and Okkervil River. Other confirmed bands include Ra Ra Riot and Wye Oak, and an announcement with over 30 other bands is coming soon. Early Bird tickets are on sale now. The first 200 people who pre-order their passes will receive the special $99 rate for the entire weekend (kids can get in even cheaper).

Last year was the fest's first year in the US. Read more about it HERE.

Meanwhile, Okkervil River are finishing up a tour with Titus Andronicus. The Hold Steady head out at the end of August with The Donkeys for a short tour. Updated dates below...

Continue reading "Truck America returns to the Catskills, initial lineup includes Okkervil River, The Hold Steady & more"

The National show in Prospect Park (more by Amanda Hatfield)
Celebrate Brooklyn

We already knew that 'Celebrate Brooklyn' is hosting an impressive lineup of ticketed Prospect Park Bandshell shows this summer: The Decemberists, Animal Collective, Sufjan Stevens, Bon Iver & Cut Copy. And we knew that the 33rd annual series of free shows would start with an Andrew Bird show on June 10th, and that BRIC is also hosting three free 'dance parties' in Brooklyn Bridge Park this summer too.

Now the entire 2011 lineup of "24 free performances, including 20 music concerts, two dance performances, two film screenings with live music, and a family concert" is here! You can check it all out (The Feelies, Real Estate, The Books, Junip, Doveman, Justin Townes Earle, Punch Brothers, Raekwon, Oumou Sangaré, Times New Viking, Ra Ra Riot, Delicate Steve, Buke & Gass and Hal Willner included), below...

Continue reading "Celebrate Brooklyn - complete 2011 Prospect Park show lineup"

alternate headline: Vampire Weekend headlining Hamptons Music Fest, go figure

Vampire Weekend @ Coachella 2008 (more by Ryan Muir)
Vampire Weekend

MTK: Music To Know Festival announces its inaugural line up headlined by Vampire Weekend on Saturday, August 13th and Bright Eyes on Sunday, August 14th. Other confirmed bands include Matt & Kim, Cold War Kids, Chromeo, Tame Impala, Ra Ra Riot, Fitz & The Tantrums, Tom Tom Club, Dawes, M Ward, We Are Scientists, The Limousines, Naked and Famous, Francis and the Lights, Suddyn, Nicos Gun and Young Empires -- 18 of today's most critically-acclaimed and successful new, emerging and well-known bands. The music begins at noon each day, ending at 10PM.

According to Co-Founder Chris Jones "The Hamptons are a unique market to say the least -- full of decision makers, trend setters, and taste generators who have always been eager to embrace the best and the brightest in our culture -- whether that is in literature, film, fashion or music. We are excited to bring this collection of artists together in our community, and hope this is the first of many annual events."
Cheesy marketing and opinions of the ritzy location and potential crowd aside, I have to say that MTK did a pretty kick-ass job of curating a relevant indie rock lineup for an East Hampton crowd (filled with bands that do a good job of moving tickets, relatively speaking). Tickets are on sale now. Two-day passes start at $195 each+fees+parking if you need it. VIP tix will cost you much more.

Without knowing how willing people are to travel to the Hamptons, how many people are already in the Hamptons, and how many tickets they need to sell (possibly only "9,500 people over both days"), it's hard to guess how successful the fest will be (from a business/longevity point of view) (Bing is a sponsor so that probably helps), but it definitely beat expectations so far (relatively speaking). More details below...

Continue reading "Music To Know Fest announces lineup (Vampire Weekend, Bright Eyes, Matt & Kim, CWK, Chromeo, M Ward, more)"

photos by Andrew St. Clair

Ra Ra Riot

Ra Ra Riot played the pop-up Wired Store (at 692 Broadway in NYC) on 12/8 as part of a series of private events at the store. Their friends Tokyo Police Club, whose next public show in NYC is at Terminal 5, play the same place tonight (12/15)

The night before their appearance at Wired, Ra Ra Riot played "Boy" from their recent LP The Orchard on Letterman. Video of that and more pictures/setlist from the Wired Store are below...

Continue reading "Ra Ra Riot played Letterman & the Wired store (Tokyo Police Club play there tonight) -- pics, video"

photos by Amanda Hatfield

Ra Ra Riot

While Pavement was waving goodbye across town, Ra Ra Riot played Music Hall of Williamsburg with Anamanaguchi on 9/24. It was RRR's fourth and final show of their residency across two venues (Bowery pics from night one and night two). Now that the four dates are over, the Syracuse band can get to the business of hitting the road, where the band will be for the remainder of the year. They play Toad's Place Tuesday with their tour-mates Chikita Violenta and We Barbarians.

In other news, Ra Ra Riot was on NPR's Soundcheck last week and recently announced a new split 7" with Stornoway. The split, which is limited to 1000 pieces and will appear on 4AD, features 'Fuel Up' by Stornaway as well as Ra Ra Riot's "Boy", both of which appear on the bands respective new LPs. Reminder, Stornaway is scheduled to play Bowery Ballroom on 12/2 with Franz Nicolay (tickets) as part of a larger US tour. Their updated dates below.

Anamanaguchi's MHOW appearance meant two shows in two days, as the band also played Death By Audio with Tera Melos, Pteradactyl, and Fiasco the previous night. Pics from that show are on the way with a new song by Anamanaguchi. Stay tuned.

More pictures from the 9/24 MHOW show, with the Stornoway dates, below...

Continue reading "Ra Ra Riot on tour, played MHOW w/ Anamanaguchi (pics), released a 7" w/ Stornoway (who are touring soon)"

photos by Dominick Mastrangelo

they played w/ Ra Ra Riot Wednesday night @ Bowery Ballroom
Ra Ra Riot

Just four years ago Ra Ra Riot was playing house parties in Syracuse, NY. Then, the mostly alum college band landed a tour with The Editors, released a self-titled EP in 2007, a debut, The Rhumb Line, one year later, moving course into music .

Supporting their sophomore album, The Orchard, the upstate rockers had new material that sounded like seasoned songs, more soulful than the pop-driven Rhumb. In fact, Ra Ra Riot even appeared as a veteran band in some manner. Perhaps it's their confidence on stage or that they've had four tumultuous, long years together. In rusty red jeans, singer Wes Miles walked out singing almost hymnal as the rest of the band materialized on stage for a brief instrumental into opener "Boy," one of eight Orchard tracks off the 15-song set. To kick off their first New York City shows on their North American tour, the band shared a few firsts, including Miles admittance to playing guitar for the first time on "Kansai." Timid and concentrated on the chords, he held up, providing enough crunch to complement guitarist Milos Binocci. Secondly, during the first of three encore songs, Alexandra Lawn stood her silent electric cello behind her to front the band for some sultry Stevie Nicks vocals on Orchard's "You and I Know," seeming at times lost in the moment then getting quite gun-shy as if she realized she's actually fronting Ra Ra Riot. -[New York Press]

The above review comes from the band's first headlining show at Bowery Ballroom on 9/21 (pics here) where Ra Ra Riot was supported by Phantogram. Ra Ra Riot played Bowery Ballroom again the next night, on Wednesday, but with Lower Dens opening. Pictures from that show are in this post. As you can see in the picures and videos, they were joined by some extra musicians (horns and even more strings).

Last night the band played their first of two shows at Music Hall of Williamsburg, which is where they complete their four night battle against Pavement tonight (9/24).

More pictures, the setlist and some videos from the 2nd Bowery show, below...

Continue reading "Ra Ra Riot played 2 more NYC shows, Bowery w/ Lower Dens (pics, setlist, videos) "

photos by Andrew St. Clair

Ra Ra Riot
Ra Ra Riot

Syracuse, N.Y., band Ra Ra Riot borrowed elements from the Cure, the Smiths and New Order -- though much less morose -- and molded them into a string-filled sound that embodied indie rock at its best. Their upbeat energy lifted the packed all-ages crowd at the Nike Sportswear Stage. Beats were propelled by bassist Mathieu Santos, guitarist Milo Bonacci and drummer Gabriel Duquette, but it was the engaging vocals of singer Wes Miles that moved this group. His emotive, high voice drew the crowd closer, and his ever thankful politeness -- he thanked the crowd numerous times throughout the hour-long set -- made him a fit for a young crowd he called "very attentive."...

The group played copiously from its two albums, "The Rhumb Line" and the just-released "The Orchard." Their indie pop sound shined on tunes like "Boy," "Shadowcasting" and the uber-catchy "Too Dramatic." Their sound was less shoegazing indie and more celebratory pop, making for a strong start to the festival. Heck, some tunes would have even fit neatly into a Molly Ringwald-John Hughes movie.

New York synth-dance electro duo Phantogram proved a worthy warmup. Sarah Barthel's sweet voice floated over ethereal '80s and '90s style synth pop as guitarist Josh Carter used heavy effects to create solid grooves and a nightclub vibe. -[The Oregonian]

The above review comes from a recent Portland, Oregon show that was part of Music Fest NW, where Ra Ra Riot also shared a bill with Phantogram, like they did last night at Bowery Ballroom (9/21).

Last night was also Ra Ra Riot's first of four NYC shows and one of two sold-out shows at Bowery Ballroom (they play there again tonight with Lower Dens). On Thursday, RRR head over the river to Music Hall of Williamsburg for a pair of shows, with tickets to the first night (on Thursday 9/23 with North Highlands & We Barbarians) still available, though the second night (9/24) is sold out. After NYC, Ra Ra heads out on a bigger tour with more assorted openers.

The show was a tour kick-off for Phantogram who hit Rochester tonight and eventually make their way back to NYC for an October 29th show at Music Hall of Williamsburg with their tour-mate Josiah Wolf (of Why?). Tickets for the Brooklyn show are still on sale. Updated dates below.

More pictures from Bowery Ballroom, the headliner's setlist, and some videos from the show, with the dates, below...

Continue reading "Ra Ra Riot kicked off their 4-night run, Phantogram kicked off a tour (Bowery Ballroom pics, video & setlist) "