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Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Video: Delta Rae succumbs to the Southern Lord, dances in a graveyard

Posted By on Wed, Oct 31, 2012 at 5:15 PM

In honor of Halloween, Delta Rae—Durham's Forever 21 version of a roots-rock band—has released a new music video for the song "Dance in the Graveyards," from its major-label debut, Carry the Fire. In said video, the band—clad in ghastly face paint and holding torches of fire—actually dances around a graveyard, as if to summon the great Baphomet himself. As best as we can tell, neither Gaahl nor the ghost of Euronymous were involved in the production. Though Indy Week has historically had its problems with Delta Rae, we hereby embrace their embrace of the darkness. Forget the Fleetwood Mac...

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Lost in the Trees debut new song

Posted By on Wed, Oct 31, 2012 at 3:13 PM

It took Ari Picker—the composer and songwriter who leads Chapel Hill's orchestrally inclined Lost in the Trees—four years to follow up 2008's All Alone in an Empty House. Though the record was reissued and expanded in 2010, Picker didn't debut a full collection of new songs until this year's haunting and fractured A Church That Fits Our Needs, an extension of All Alone's narrative and a tribute to his late mother. It seems that listeners won't have to wait another four years for the Tress' next effort. The band recently played a session at the Los Angeles-based radio station...

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Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Tonight: John Vanderslice and Crooked Fingers play in Raleigh

Posted By on Tue, Oct 30, 2012 at 5:55 PM

Tonight, Raleigh's Kings Barcade will host a pair of extremely literate singer-songwriters. But John Vanderslice and Eric Bachmann—who performs with his Crooked Fingers—have more on their minds than penning pristine verses and strumming a guitar, which makes their well-written words that much more potent. In addition to a slew of evocative, symbol-rich albums, Vanderslice is a respected producer, working closely with North Carolina's own Scott Solter to craft the sound of his last few solo LPs and helming a trio of albums by Durham's The Mountain Goats. Vanderslice's sense of sonic adventure finds one of its greatest expressions on...

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Update: Casbah changes booking agents

Posted By and on Tue, Oct 30, 2012 at 10:30 AM

Last week, a blog post about a change in personnel at Durham rock club Casbah got a few key facts wrong. The article incorrectly stated that former talent buyer Steve Gardner had been fired from his position; he was laid off. The article also quotes Gardner’s replacement, Elysse Thebner, saying that she plans to increase the number of local bookings. As Gardner points out, Thebner’s quote incorrectly represents the ratio of local and touring acts booked during his tenure at the Casbah. Attendance records produced by Gardner verify that at least 73 percent of his 2012 bookings came from the...

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Monday, October 29, 2012

Video: Kathleen Edwards talks "giant boner for Durham," collaborates with Mandolin Orange

Posted By on Mon, Oct 29, 2012 at 5:20 PM

"I really wish I hadn't written this song because I kind of have a giant boner for Durham," said Canadian singer-songwriter Kathleen Edwards as she transitioned into "Empty Threat," the first song of her most recent release Voyageur, Friday night at the Haw River Ballroom. The song revolves around the idea of her moving to America but not wanting to do so. Despite it being her first performance at the venue, Edwards continuously heaped praise on the room and venue co-owner Heather LaGarde. Edwards played a nearly two-hour set, featuring selections from each of her albums. Jim Bryson and...

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Live: GZA leads a chorus of bros in Raleigh

Posted By on Mon, Oct 29, 2012 at 11:12 AM

GZALincoln Theatre, RaleighThursday, Oct. 25 The first time I saw Wu-Tang ’s GZA perform his legendary 1995 solo effort, Liquid Swords, was a dozen years after its release at the 2007 Pitchfork Music Festival. Though the rapper held court in Chicago over a field full of fans, a near-dusk set time squandered his energy in such a huge expanse. Last week’s packed show at the Lincoln was completely different. Despite The Genius’ needless but persistent complaints about the volume of his music and microphone, the rabid, bro-dominated crowd finished nearly every line of the emcee’s classic album for him, especially...

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Friday, October 26, 2012

Simple Music Video Series: Phil Cook & His Feat's "Frazee, Minnesota" and "Scorned"

Posted By on Fri, Oct 26, 2012 at 4:00 AM

If there could be good news from the fact that his full-time group Megafaun is taking some well deserved time off, it is that folks in the Triangle will get to see Phil Cook & His Feat perform more often. Thursday, Nov. 1, Phil and his brother Brad are involved in a very interesting project. They will be live scoring the documentary Without a Fight, which centers around how the sport of soccer can bring about social change in Kibera, one of Africa's largest slums. The event is part of a block party premier of the documentary, with food...

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Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Durham's Casbah hires new talent buyer (UPDATED)

Posted By on Wed, Oct 24, 2012 at 3:13 PM

The Durham rock club Casbah changed direction Tuesday by firing talent buyer Steve Gardner and hiring Elysse Thebner as his replacement. Thebner is a fixture in the local music community, playing with bands such as Some Army and JKutchma & The Five Fifths and promoting shows with Ampersand Booking. Gardner had been at the Casbah since it opened two years ago. "We took a long look at our operational model and decided that we realized we needed to make some changes," explains co-owner Jana Bradley, adding that she and partner Fergus Bradley thought that the venue would be more...

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Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Live: The grace of Tinariwen in Carrboro

Posted By on Tue, Oct 23, 2012 at 7:04 PM

TinariwenThe ArtsCenter, CarrboroSaturday, Oct. 20 Tinariwen’s six members appear on stage, at least as they did Saturday night in Carrboro, accompanied by the rustle of traditional Taureg-Berber robes, the flash of red electrical guitars and the pop of hand drums. Such juxtaposition should give some clue as to the worlds that collide within the band’s music: Tinariwen’s members are Malian, but the group’s founders met in Libyan refugee camps in the late 1970’s. The Taureg are a group of desert nomads, a small minority that is well-versed in resistance since before beginning of Africa’s nation-building. The band’s music is...

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Superchunk's Mac McCaughan to rock the vote with Spider Bags, Titus Andronicus

Posted By on Tue, Oct 23, 2012 at 3:00 PM

Update: The Thursday show in Greensboro isn't coming to pass. Friday in Durham is still on. As he was in 2008, Mac McCaughan is out to motivate N.C. voters. This week, the Superchunk frontman and Merge Records co-founder will play three rallies across the state in support of early voting, including a Friday appearance at Durham Central Park. Wednesday he’ll be in Wilmington, Thursday in Greensboro. At all three dates, he’ll be supported by the magnificently un-serious rock trio Spider Bags. In Durham, New Jersey's Titus Andronicus will play as well, lending their rabble-rousing bombast to the cause. “We’re...

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Friday, October 19, 2012

Simple Music Video Series: Josh Moore covers Ryan Adams' "Tomorrow"

Posted By on Fri, Oct 19, 2012 at 11:58 AM

Since his time with Beloved and Classic Case, Josh Moore has occasionally appeared with new music—opening a local show, releasing a sporadic seven-inch record, popping up to sing background vocals. With all of these appearances, it's puzzling as to why he isn't playing out constantly. As you'll hear in this week's session, despite covering another artist, the pureness of his voice is something to behold. There have been mentions of an upcoming solo project, and Moore recently released a clear-vinyl single featuring the songs "New Morning" (which you can listen to here) and "End of the Night." It is...

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Thursday, October 18, 2012

Live: Jens Lekman comes to Norf Carolina

Posted By on Thu, Oct 18, 2012 at 10:38 AM

Charmed, we're sure: Jens Lekman Jens LekmanCat’s Cradle, CarrboroMonday, Oct. 15 “How are you doing, Norf Carolina?” Jens Lekman asked at the Cat’s Cradle Monday night, half-sincere and half-droll, in that unmistakable Swedish accent that turns father into “fodder” and you into “chew.” Lekman is the epitome of love-it-or-hate it, singing elaborately written and arranged vignettes in a voice like buttered velvet. His lean, dynamic indie-pop songs are pumped up with all kinds of glorious schmaltz, pilfered from the furthest reaches of taste—smooth saxes, beatnik interludes, magical flutes, cozy strings, patrician reggae, saucy calypso. His lyrics mix extravagant sentiment and...

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Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Whatever Brains release video for new song, "Bellied Up at Sick Town"

Posted By on Wed, Oct 17, 2012 at 12:57 PM

Bellied Up At Sick Town by Whatever Brains from LoganSayles on Vimeo. Raleigh's Whatever Brains are nothing if not prolific. After releasing self-titled LPs in 2011 and 2012 that landed less than a year apart, the darkly sarcastic post-punks return with a video for "Bellied Up at Sick Town," a new demo that will likely be included on the outfit's in-progress third album. The video captures the Brains in their recent live line-up, which features the added percussion of an extra floor tom and two guys on synthesizer. The result is a complex and demanding track where rhythms ricochet...

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Monday, October 15, 2012

Live: Yep Roc 15 ends with a fan's finale

Posted By on Mon, Oct 15, 2012 at 5:16 PM

If Night 1 featured Yep Roc’s biggest names, and Night 2 emphasized the label’s power-pop predilections, Night 3 was all about roots: Triangle-area roots and roots music in general. As such, it featured the showcase’s folksiest between-song patter (discounting Robyn Hitchcock’s trademark parallel-universe digressions on Night 1, which comprise their own own category). Early on, Jim White introduced “If Jesus Drove a Motorhome,” about being stuck behind Jesus in a traffic jam, with a laconic but brilliantly observed yarn about life in his heavily Pentecostal homeland, Pensacola, Fla. His rendition of “My Brother’s Keeper,” the tale of an old...

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Live: Yep Roc's 15th anniversary goes power pop for Night 2

Posted By on Mon, Oct 15, 2012 at 10:30 AM

Night 2 of Yep Roc 15 was power pop time. Following an opening-day bill packed with heavy hitters that resulted in the Cat’s Cradle being crammed almost to capacity, the mood on Friday was more subdued, the vibe less celebratory and more perfunctory as the show rumbled to life at its appointed 8 p.m. time. Nevertheless, loquacious host John Wesley Harding sounded excited as he introduced the Mayflies USA, a revered local act that has broken up but occasionally reunites. Before getting started, principal vocalist Matt McMichaels declared, “We want you to know that we’re still the same.” The...

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Friday, October 12, 2012

Live: Distilling a lifetime at Yep Roc's 15th Anniversary

Posted By on Fri, Oct 12, 2012 at 6:28 PM

Photo by Jeremy M. LangeYep Roc founders, from left, Glenn Dicker and Tor Hansen After Night 1 of the Yep Roc 15th anniversary festival at Cat’s Cradle, my husband and I were walking to the car, exchanging notes on the five-hour show, when he compared the scrappy indie label to the Oakland Raiders. In the 1970s and ’80s, the Raiders scooped up players no other NFL team understood—the outliers and outcasts—then proceeded to become one of the most formidable and dominant outfits in the league. This is an apt metaphor for a label with a diverse roster with a pedigree...

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Simple Music Video Series: Town Mountain's "Run Junior Run" and "Greenbud on the Flower"

Posted By on Fri, Oct 12, 2012 at 4:20 PM

When we set out to do this series, I wanted to represent all of North Carolina. Today, we feature friends from the western half of the state, Town Mountain. They are a traditional-leaning bluegrass band who should be included in anyone's discussion of the best Tar Heel bluegrass acts. Not only are they strong instrumentally, but lead singer Robert Greer is special. As far as traditional bluegrass bands go, if you don't have a lead singer with an authentic Southern drawl, it just doesn't seem right. Here we present two songs from their latest, and arguably best, release, Leave...

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Live: Miguel loots my libido in Raleigh

Posted By on Fri, Oct 12, 2012 at 2:17 PM

Give it up: Miguel MiguelLincoln Theatre, RaleighWednesday, Oct. 10 It's never fun to be a concertgoer among stuffy rookies who don't see a live show as an opportunity for a party: They complain if you bump into them, step on their shoes or express any amount of excitement that threatens their personal space. You'd expect that level of conservatism at an orchestra appearance, not an R&B show—especially not one headlined by pop music's newest sensation, Miguel. The release of his most recent album—Kaleidoscope Dream, an 11-song, deluxe love masterpiece—has placed the 25-year-old singer among R&B's elite. In a somewhat stuffy...

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Compass Center benefit: Tonight at Chapel Hill Underground

Posted By on Fri, Oct 12, 2012 at 9:30 AM

Greg HutchinsonBoykiller, Friday at Chapel Hill Underground Friday sees five predominately female acts take the stage at Chapel Hill Underground to benefit the Compass Center for Women and Families. This organization was formed from a merger of the Family Violence Prevention Center of Orange County and The Women's Center with the goal of preventing domestic violence and helping its victims. No services were dropped in the merger, reads a statement from Women's Center Development Director Marya McNeish. Rather, clients now have access to both organizations' resources and no longer have to tell their stories twice. The bands and DJ on...

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Thursday, October 11, 2012

Lloyd Pack, featuring Dan Melchior and Letha Rodman-Melchior, announce debut 7-inch

Posted By on Thu, Oct 11, 2012 at 5:21 PM

They say in times of crisis, a person's true colors reveal themselves more brilliantly than ever. That certainly seems the case for Dan Melchior and his wife, Letha Rodman-Melchior, local musicians (he fronts and she plays bass for Dan Melchior Und Das Menace) who, since Letha was diagnosed with melanoma and breast cancer in 2010, have battled the diseases tenaciously and continued to pursue their artistic endeavors. The latest output from the Melchiors is the debut of a new band, Lloyd Pack, which finds Dan and Letha joined by Russell Walker of the English post-punk band The Pheromoans. The...

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Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Tonight: ZZ Top in Durham

Posted By on Wed, Oct 10, 2012 at 3:24 PM

The temptation is to throw your hands in the air and cry that Rick Rubin has done it again. But while the famed producer has indeed helmed another solid-to-strong return by an out-of-fashion act with ZZ Top’s La Futura, it’s not quite that simple. Beyond quibbles over just how outré a four-decade-old blues band from Texas will ever be, there’s some question about what Rubin added—or didn’t add, actually. It may just be that, after producing all their albums, Billy Gibbons needed a nudge from someone he trusted. However the credit should be apportioned, the Houston trio sounds refreshed;...

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Monday, October 8, 2012

Live: Old Quarter and Some Army at Tir na nOg (video)

Posted By on Mon, Oct 8, 2012 at 2:23 PM

In one of the more solid Local Band, Local Beer showcases in recent memory, Some Army and Caleb Caudle joined Old Quarter for their debut EP release show. Some Army started off the night with a few technical difficulties but finished strong and also debuted a few new songs. Despite taking the stage after midnight, Old Quarter flew through their 45 minute set, playing each tune on the EP, as well as a few choice covers. Give the Old Quarter EP a listen: It is one of the better alt-country efforts in the area this year....

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Friday, October 5, 2012

Simple Music Video Series: Chuck Prophet & The Mission Express' "Willie Mays Is up at Bat"

Posted By on Fri, Oct 5, 2012 at 12:03 AM

Three years ago at another of her roots shows in the damp and dark Berkeley Cafe, local promoter Marianne Taylor turned me on to Chuck Prophet. At the time, he was on tour with his backing band The Mission Express, supporting the then-new Let Freedom Ring. Since that evening the album has not left my car. In doing this series, I had a list of "stretch" artists that I hoped might participate; Chuck Prophet and company were nearly at the top. When they agreed to come in, we had planned for him to only play a few songs solo,...

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Thursday, October 4, 2012

Savagist and Bitter Resolve: Tonight at Slim's

Posted By on Thu, Oct 4, 2012 at 3:30 PM

It gets loud from here: Bitter Resolve We goofed: A blurb that ran yesterday said Arizona minimalist garage duo Acorn Bcorn would play Slim's on Thursday, Oct. 4. It was supposed to say Oct. 3. This mistake has been corrected online, but the misprint still overshadows an excellent heavy bill booked at Slim's for tonight all along. Athens heavy four-piece Savagist may be from the home state of so much excellent Southern sludge, but there's an almost Motor City metal flavor to this punishing, muscled rock-metal. Chapel Hill's Bitter Resolve brings a fine hybrid of space-rock, proto-grunge and riff-metal. The...

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Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Hear a track from Le Weekend's third album, the magic y/ear

Posted By on Wed, Oct 3, 2012 at 4:42 PM

The music of Chapel Hill's Le Weekend is marked by stark contrast: moments of catchiest pop abandon give way to noisy freak outs. To this point, it's been a balance that the trio has struggled to maintain. The transitions between its disparate elements sometimes get a bit too jarring. But the magic y/ear—the group's third album, which will be unveiled at an Oct. 19 CD release party at Durham's Pinhook—smooths the edges, allowing Le Weekend's parts to add up to their optimum sum. This time out, moments of polite tunefulness build gradually to aggressive conclusions. These catharses cover an...

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Samson and Delilah is a Rev Gary Davis song, not in the set list though.

by Doug Mlyn on Video: Jorma Kaukonen settles at the Lincoln Theatre (Music)

Allison. Stay home. There may be too many middle aged white folks and their twangy music at this show for …

by Rebecca 1 on American Roots Music & Arts Festival lineup is here, with Willie Nelson, The Roots, Modest Mouse and more (Music)

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