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Monday, April 30, 2012

Live: In Durham, Elvis Costello becomes his own king

Posted By on Mon, Apr 30, 2012 at 11:34 AM

It's likely that several hundred (if not upward of a thousand) people whipped out their smartphones at last night's Elvis Costello concert and photographed the brightly colored Spinning Songbook that anchored the stage at the Durham Performing Arts Center. At 20-feet high, the mechanism dwarfed the size of Costello and his band, the Imposters—the tight-as-a-tick three-piece of keyboardist Steve Nieve, drummer Pete Thomas and bassist Davey Faragher. It aptly illustrated the magnitude of Costello's repertoire, which is many times greater than the mere 40 tunes that fit on the wheel. During the gig's three relentless hours, with an indefatigability and...

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Friday, April 27, 2012

Live: Whatever Brains show their sides

Posted By on Fri, Apr 27, 2012 at 4:07 PM

Whatever Brains, Burglar FuckerKings BarcadeApril 26, 2012 Photo by Tim LytvinenkoIn the cut: Whatever Brains If one didn’t know better, the fact that Thursday night’s gig was in honor of Whatever Brains’ second LP release might’ve gone unnoticed. Frontman Rich Ivey offhandedly mentioned the new album twice. Once, after the set’s first song, “Bad Dads,” he acknowledged it as the LP’s lead track, and at the end of the set, he mentioned the album’s existence once more. That was that. Sure, the set drew heavily from the new album’s tracklist, but not more than any number of recent gigs have....

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Thursday, April 26, 2012

The Old Ceremony sign to Yep Roc, announce new LP

Posted By on Thu, Apr 26, 2012 at 1:59 PM

Photo courtesy of The Old Ceremony For most of its seven-year run, The Old Ceremony has been its own home. Of the band's four full-lengths, three have been released by Alyosha Records, run by the band's leader, Django Haskins. After years of intermittent toil and triumph that have seen The Old Ceremony become one of the Triangle's most beloved pop-rock bands, the band has signed to N.C.-based indie mainstay Yep Roc Records. The label will release the band's fifth LP — the awkwardly titled Fairytales and Other Forms of Suicide — on Aug. 21. Yep Roc is a fitting home...

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Tuesday, April 24, 2012

The Roots' Carrboro surprise

Posted By on Tue, Apr 24, 2012 at 1:56 PM

Last night, attendees of The Station's weekly open-mic night were witness to an unexpected treat. In Chapel Hill for a Tuesday taping of Late Night with Jimmy Fallon, The Roots took to the Carrboro bar's small corner stage for an impromptu 30-minute set. The overwhelmingly talented hip-hop outfit is the house band for Fallon's NBC talk show. UNC senior Taylor Smith had just gotten home from seeing Trampled By Turtles at Cat's Cradle when a friend called him about the surprise performance. He rushed out with a housemate and got to The Station at about 11:30 p.m. as The...

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Record Store Day in review: Schoolkids sets a record

Posted By on Tue, Apr 24, 2012 at 11:54 AM

Stephen Judge didn’t sleep Friday night. Saturday would be his first Records Store Day as owner of Raleigh’s Schoolkids Records. In its fifth year, Record Store Day offered hundereds of limited-run releases to bolster independent shops that have just had to pay their taxes. Determining what records to stock is always a gamble. Judge figured that Schoolkids would do well, but he couldn’t be sure. “When I pulled into the back parking lot at 7:30 in the morning there were no cars parked in the Sadlack's spots. I thought, ‘Oh no, there’s nobody here,’ Judge recalls. “I walked around...

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Dayglow: Dance (almost) naked

Posted By on Tue, Apr 24, 2012 at 11:05 AM

Dayglow Raleigh Amphitheater April 21, 2012 The first curious thing about Dayglow is that it happens at night. Walking down Raleigh's South Street last Saturday, you could already hear the music—throbbing bass and whooshing synthesizers, syncopated snares and hi-hats. An unusual number of college students, many missing articles of clothing generally considered compulsory, flitted about in attitudes of stylized sexuality and violence. A swaggering pack of young men in white T-shirts, clearly acting out a Reservoir Dogs fantasy, yelled "Thug life!" at no one in particular. A clutch of young women doused each other with aerosol string. There was...

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Friday, April 20, 2012

Drive-By Truckers and Megafaun cover "The Weight," for Levon

Posted By on Fri, Apr 20, 2012 at 10:19 AM

Encore renditions of The Band's classic tune "The Weight" are pretty common at live gigs; it seems most any band with a reverence for American music and worth their salt eventually gets around to covering it onstage. Last night's version at Cat's Cradle, though, carried a bit more weight than usual—delivered, as it was, on the day that Band drummer Levon Helm died. Two bands who clearly held Levon's life and memory dear—headliner the Drive-By Truckers and our own local opening act Megafaun—joined forces at the end of the night to offer up an extended tribute, with the audience...

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Thursday, April 12, 2012

Red Collar debuts new single, "American Me"

Posted By on Thu, Apr 12, 2012 at 5:27 PM

"The first words I ever learned/ Were 'Mommy' and 'Daddy' and 'heartbreak!'" Jason Kutchma roars at the onset of "American Me," the first single from Red Collar's new LP Welcome Home — due June 12 via Tiny Engines. The outsized Durham punk band has long mined the fractured ends of romantic ideals, but that line and the song that contains it express the band's unique brand of defiant heartbreak as well as anything they've ever released. Check it out now over at Alternative Press. That's good news for Red Collar fans who have waited since the band's 2010 album...

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Tuesday, April 10, 2012

The Mountain Goats, Mac McCaughan and Greg Cartwright team up to fight Amendment 1 at Motorco

Posted By on Tue, Apr 10, 2012 at 1:08 PM

In less than a month, North Carolinians will vote on the so-called defense of marriage amendment, which would permanently prohibit same-sex marriage and all forms of non-marriage civil unions by codifying the ban (which already exists in state law) into the state constitution. Before that happens, though, three of the state's finest songwriters will offer a loud stand against the proposed amendment. The Mountain Goats, Mac McCaughan (of Superchunk and Portastatic) and Greg Cartwright (of Reigning Sound, Compulsive Gamblers and The Oblivians) will take the stage at Motorco to raise money and awareness on behalf of the Coalition to...

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Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Tonight at Motorco: New York jazz quartet Endangered Blood

Posted By on Tue, Apr 3, 2012 at 6:28 PM

Endangered Blood strikes an intimidating tone with its name, but it’s actually a reference to the short-lived Comedy Central series TV Funhouse. That irony is fitting for the band: Its members arrive bearing stacked résumés in the out-rock and contemporary jazz realm. The band’s most well-known member outside of jazz circles, bassist Trevor Dunn, has collaborated with John Zorn, Mr. Bungle, Fantômas and Melvins, but saxophonists Chris Speed and Oscar Noriega, and drummer Jim Black, aren’t exactly unknowns, either. All three play in various well-regarded combos, and Speed runs the excellent Skirl label. But despite its members’ outré excursions beyond...

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Monday, April 2, 2012

Pontiak's relentless hard rock evolution

Wednesday at Kings with Left Outlet

Posted By on Mon, Apr 2, 2012 at 9:36 AM

You will find few brothers who work together better than Jennings, Van and Lain Carney. You'll also find few bands that work as hard as Pontiak, the lead-heavy Virginia psych rock trio comprised of these siblings. In just five years of existence they've managed five full-lengths and an EP. The pace would suggest a workman-like approach, finding a groove and holding steadfastly to it. Such is not the case with Pontiak. Their output is striking diverse, continually finding new avenues to explore while retaining a core of muscular, Southern-tinged hooks. Where 2010's Living found then indulging in densely metallic...

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They made their goal. That said, it's not the job of rich white ladies in Raleigh to fund black separatists …

by Dude on Durham's Blackspace Hosts Fundraising Parties Tonight and Tomorrow (Music)

It makes me sad to see the class disparity in the triangle written out so clearly. The Kickstarter for Blackspace …

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