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Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Watch New Videos from Sylvan Esso—Who Have a New LP out Next Month—and Flock of Dimes

Posted By on Wed, Mar 1, 2017 at 12:20 PM

Happy Wednesday! It's March 1, and it's supposed to get up to eighty degrees in the Triangle today. So why not join Sylvan Esso on a desert romp through their new video? The clip for "Die Young," which was released yesterday, features Amelia Meath joyriding in a cop car she steals from Nick Sanborn, who's dressed up as a police officer and hassling a shirtless young person over a mysterious electronic device. "Die Young" is the new single from What Now, Sylvan Esso's full-length follow-up to their 2014 self-titled LP. It's out on April 28, and after spending much...

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Friday, February 17, 2017

Video Premiere: Phil Cook and Skylar Gudasz Nod to Alice Gerrard in New Tribute Clips

Posted By on Fri, Feb 17, 2017 at 12:58 PM

If you’re a fan of old-time, bluegrass, or have just been around Durham for a long time, you probably know Alice Gerrard. A pioneer with songwriting partner Hazel Dickens in the sixties and seventies, Gerrard has dedicated her life to the music she loves, and she remains an active and important force. Now she’s the subject of a forthcoming documentary, titled You Gave Me a Song, by Durham filmmaker Kenny Dalsheimer. He began work on the project in 2015 and is working on finalizing the film for a release. To that end, fellow Durhamites Phil Cook and Skylar Gudasz have...

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Friday, February 3, 2017

Tonight's David Bowie Tribute in Chapel Hill Postponed Due to OWASA Emergency

Posted By on Fri, Feb 3, 2017 at 2:56 PM

Bad news if you were planning to hit Chapel Hill tonight to take in the Glass At 80 tribute to David Bowie. Due to an emergency with Chapel Hill and Carrboro's water supply, OWASA customers have been told not to use any water, and UNC-Chapel Hill closed because of the problem at 1 p.m. That closure includes Memorial Hall, which was supposed to host this evening's Heroes Tribute. Organizers with Carolina Performing Arts are working to reschedule the concert, which was to feature a Merge Records supergroup, but no date has been confirmed yet. So far, shows at Local 506,...

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Richard Lloyd Tells a Vision: A Q&A with the Celebrated Guitarist

Posted By on Fri, Feb 3, 2017 at 1:00 PM

As one-quarter of the seminal New York City band Television, Richard Lloyd wasn’t just there for the birth of punk in the States: it wouldn’t have happened without him. Television didn’t last long, and they weren't really punk, but they were the first band to play at CBGBs. The band's 1977 LP, Marquee Moon, is a singular achievement that continues to bedazzle, with its thrilling admixture of Lloyd and Verlaine's guitars meshing in almost impossible ways. Lloyd has since distinguished himself on record, in the solo realm and as a fiery sideman (his riveting playing on Matthew Sweet's Girlfriend is...

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Here Are the Local Musicians Donating Their Bandcamp Proceeds to the ACLU Today

Posted By on Fri, Feb 3, 2017 at 9:05 AM

Earlier this week, the music platform Bandcamp announced that it would donate its cut of all music and merch sales made today to the ACLU. The move came as a response to the immigration ban that went in effect over the weekend, which prompted a massive flood in donations to the civil rights organization. So far, over two hundred artists and labels have joined Bandcamp in pledging some or all of their own proceeds from today's sales to the ACLU or other social justice organizations. Here's a growing list of locals who are participating in today's give-a-thon. To add your...

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Thursday, February 2, 2017

Durham's Raund Haus Beat Collective Announces New Record Label

Posted By on Thu, Feb 2, 2017 at 4:27 PM

Durham beat collective Raund Haus announced via a promo video on Tuesday that it's got a new endeavor that reaches beyond its regular showcases: a label dubbed Raund Haus Records. The announcement makes plenty of sense, considering the popularity of those showcases, where its resident producers have grown accustomed to turning area venues into their own producer dungeons packed with clusters of head-nod zombies, J. Dilla heads, Flying Lotus fans, and drum freaks. In recent memory, it’s one of only a few hip-hop-related labels to surface.  In August 2015, sisters Shorlette and Shirlette Ammons unveiled SugarQube Records. Several months later, a team...

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Live: Philip Glass's New Eleventh Symphony Makes Its Second Appearance in Chapel Hill

Posted By on Thu, Feb 2, 2017 at 11:05 AM

Glass At 80: Bruckner Orchester Linz UNC's Memorial Hall, Chapel Hill Wednesday, February 1, 2017 New Philip Glass pieces generally fall into two categories: the really good and the really bad. His style is so distinctive, his palette of ideas so stable, that the difference between the two comes down to small decisions of pacing and inflection. His piles of repetitive arpeggios either go somewhere or they don’t, and it’s sometimes hard to pinpoint exactly why they work in one place but fall flat in another. Thankfully, his eleventh symphony, which received its second ever performance last night by the...

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Thursday, January 26, 2017

Yep Roc and UNC's Southern Folklife Collection Have Teamed Up to Issue Three Records

Posted By on Thu, Jan 26, 2017 at 11:05 AM

The Southern Folklife Collection at UNC-Chapel Hill is one of the most valuable resources in the country for documents of the everyday stuff that makes us us. From rock show posters and T-shirts to obscure field recordings and photographs, the collection is a treasure trove of music, interviews, art, and much more. You can explore the SFC’s archives online, but soon you can hold some of the collection in your own hands: This spring marks the launch of a partnership between the SFC and Yep Roc Records. The label, based in Hillsborough, will issue three records that have been digitally...

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Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Live: On Inauguration Night, Run the Jewels Keeps the Fun Flowing in Raleigh

Posted By on Wed, Jan 25, 2017 at 1:01 PM

Run the Jewels The Ritz, Raleigh Friday, January 20, 2016 Shortly before Run the Jewels took the stage in Raleigh, I pushed my way to the center of the densely packed crowd. The dudes I ended up next to were raring to go. After pausing to excitedly chide me for my earplugs—as inadequate against the blaring, blistering sound that followed as the guys said they would be—they joined an impatient chant of “R - T - J!” that soon erupted, seizing their opportunity to shift the message when it started to die down: “Fuck Donald Trump!” they bellowed, inspiring an...

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Raleigh's Community Music School Set to Reopen Next Week After Temporary Shutdown

Posted By on Wed, Jan 25, 2017 at 12:21 PM

After shutting down operations in November to deal with a financial crisis that threatened is survival, Raleigh’s nonprofit Community Music School has announced it will reopen its doors and that classes will resume beginning February 1. Citing an outpouring of financial support, the board says it’s confident it can continue providing inexpensive music lessons to the roughly 120 students from underprivileged circumstances currently enrolled as well as to students in future years. To stay healthy, the board says it will engage the public in reevaluating its mission and practices. Last September, when the students returned for lessons, board members discovered...

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Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Live: North Carolina Hip-Hop Flexes its Muscles in Raleigh

Posted By on Tue, Jan 24, 2017 at 4:56 PM

Local Band Local Beer: DeFacto Thezpian, South Rome, Jooselord Magnus, Alex Aff, Danny Blaze The Pour House, Raleigh Thursday, January 7, 2017 North Carolina hip-hop is alive and well, and though hip-hop in the Triangle area has yet to flourish on the levels of Atlanta or New York, this year’s first Local Band Local Beer marked a monumental shift within the North Carolina music scene. The hip-hop community is no longer asking for the support of the greater North Carolina area—instead, its participants are making opportunities for themselves through their own names and resources. Locally and beyond, names like J....

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Monday, January 16, 2017

Song Premiere: Peter Holsapple Returns to Solo Work with a New Single

Posted By on Mon, Jan 16, 2017 at 2:16 PM

Peter Holsapple, who co-fronted power-pop cult heroes The dB’s in the eighties and subsequently worked with everyone from R.E.M. to Hootie & The Blowfish, has plenty of recordings to his credit, but up until now there’s only been one solo outing in his discography: the 1997 album Out of My Way. That’s about to change with the impending arrival of his single “Don’t Mention the War” b/w “Cinderella Style.” Holsapple, who grew up in Winston-Salem and currently makes his home in Durham, doesn’t mind speculating on the reason for the scarcity of his solo material. “I don’t feel there’s been...

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Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Moogfest Announces Nona Hendryx, Moor Mother, SURVIVE, and More in First Wave of Programming

Posted By on Tue, Jan 10, 2017 at 11:03 AM

For its second stand in Durham, Moogfest is rolling out its programming lineup in phases, the first of which just dropped. The overall programming themes include The Future of Creativity, Protest, Spatial Sound, Hacking Systems, The Future of Creativity, Instrument Design, The Joyful Noise of STEAM, and more. Topping the bill this round is Nona Hendryx, most notably of Labelle, who will perform and present wearable tech instruments of her own invention. SURVIVE, the duo responsible for the synth soundtrack of last year's runaway Netflix hit Stranger Things, and noise pioneers Wolf Eyes also take the stage. The Haxan Cloak's...

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Wednesday, December 28, 2016

Southland Ballroom to Close After New Year's Eve

Posted By on Wed, Dec 28, 2016 at 12:14 PM

Back in the spring, we reported that Southland Ballroom, the Raleigh music venue whose building was bought out by developers in February, would likely be sticking around for at least another year. That's changed this week, as the venue has announced that its New Year's Eve party with Talking Heads cover band Same As It Ever Was will be its final show. In an email, music manager Eric Puente said the development project had moved more quickly than Southland had originally anticipated, and that construction is slated to start in February. Rather than close in the middle of a month,...

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Monday, December 26, 2016

Raleigh's Free Local Band Local Beer Series Has a Five-Dollar Cover Starting Next Week

Posted By on Mon, Dec 26, 2016 at 12:58 PM

The beer will still be local and so will the bands, but starting in 2017, the weekly Local Band Local Beer concert series is going to cost you a five-spot. For ten years, Local Band Local Beer has united two of the area’s finest exports, at no charge, in downtown Raleigh, regularly bringing in droves of beer lovers and attracting bands that were paid well on the strength of the drinking crowd. But, according to a statement released Wednesday by Pour House owner Adam Lindstaedt, the series will begin charging admission in order to offer better compensation to the bands...

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Tuesday, December 13, 2016

San Francisco Symphony Cancels Chapel Hill Appearance Over HB 2

Posted By on Tue, Dec 13, 2016 at 12:06 PM

Even with the recent good news that Pat McCrory has agreed to leave the Governor’s Mansion voluntarily, the discriminatory HB 2 law that he and his cronies passed in secret continues to inflict damage on the state. Yesterday afternoon, Carolina Performing Arts announced that the San Francisco Symphony had notified the institution that it was canceling its two April performances at UNC-Chapel Hill due to North Carolina's pernicious legislation. The wave of cancellations by performers like Bruce Springsteen, not to mention corporate entities pulling of plans to establish a presence the Tar Heel State, has abated since HB 2 became...

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Monday, December 12, 2016

Art of Cool Festival Adds Common to Its April Lineup

Posted By on Mon, Dec 12, 2016 at 12:01 PM

Last month, when Art of Cool Festival announced its 2017 lineup, the festival seemed to have outdone its bookings of the previous three years. After all, which of its years can top two vastly different, legendary music lodestones like funk pioneer George Clinton and hip-hop icon Rakim headlining, as well as another wide-ranging field of jazz, soul, and hip-hop hotshots including world-class trumpeter Christian Scott, prolific hip-hop producer and DJ Just Blaze, JMSN, Goldlink, The Hamiltones, Nao, and more? Today, Art of Cool made an even stronger case for its 2017 festival by adding Grammy Award-winning Chicago rapper, Common, as...

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Friday, November 18, 2016

Live: Sloan Feels Good, Does It at the Cradle Back Room

Posted By on Fri, Nov 18, 2016 at 1:38 PM

Sloan Cat's Cradle Back Room, Carrboro Wednesday, November 16, 2016 When my dad was in college, he attended some of Vladimir Nabokov’s lectures, and his most concentrated nugget of wisdom from that experience has always stuck with me. He told me the great man of letters told his students that when reading a novel for the first time, read for plot. But the second time through, toss away the plot and look deeper at everything else to excavate the work's essence and the author’s intent. After I saw Sloan play almost exactly two years ago at Cat’s Cradle Back Room,...

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Thursday, November 17, 2016

Live: No BS! Brass Band Cuts Up in Carrboro

Posted By on Thu, Nov 17, 2016 at 11:01 AM

No BS! Brass Band Cat's Cradle Back Room, Carrboro Friday, November 11, 2016 If I had looked away for another second, I probably would’ve missed it. From a raised balcony in Cat’s Cradle’s Back Room, I watched the No BS! Brass Band coolly take the stage. The band’s leader, Reggie Pace, hopped up from within the crowd, pressed his lips to the trombone, and began to play. The crowd’s chatter ceased. No one made a sound. Then the drummer, Lance Koehler, let out an unholy scream. A few beats later, and the eight-person band joined in all at once. No...

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Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Moogfest Announces Joint Pass with Art of Cool for 2017 Festivals

Posted By on Tue, Nov 15, 2016 at 3:41 PM

Moogfest and Art of Cool Festival have had a patchy past, marred early this year by the City of Durham prioritizing funding for the tech-heavy, Asheville-based Moogfest over the Durham-grown Art of Cool Festival. While Art of Cool eventually got more money, it seemed as though the city was putting Moogfest's promise of out-of-town over the grassroots, community-focused Art of Cool. This checkered episode seems behind them, though, as evidenced by the festivals’ latest partnership in selling DURM Flex Passes for $249. The pass allows patrons to attend both festivals for one price: Art of Cool from April 28 to...

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Friday, November 11, 2016

Live: Pacifica Quartet and Johannes Moser Unravel Splendid Hopes

Posted By on Fri, Nov 11, 2016 at 12:23 PM

Pacifica Quartet featuring Johannes Moser, cello Saturday, November 5 Duke's Baldwin Auditorium, Durham Both quintets in Saturday's concert featuring Pacifica Quartet with Johannes Moser began with glowing major chords gradually emerging from silence. From there, each work spun out in a completely different direction: Julia Wolfe’s Splendid Hopes into a tightly wound ball of nerves, Franz Schubert’s cello quintet into deep exhales and perpetual melodies. The Wolfe piece was co-commissioned by Duke Performances, and this was its world premiere. Wolfe—a 2015 Pulitzer Prize winner and 2016 MacArthur Fellow—is one of the foremost composers of our time, and it’s fantastic that...

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Friday, November 4, 2016

Durham Central Park Passes First Hurdle to Nabbing Free Music Series

Posted By on Fri, Nov 4, 2016 at 4:28 PM

A bunch of free music might be headed Durham’s way this summer—but to get there, you've got to vote for it. Durham Central Park stands to increase its free concert offerings if it can win a grant for which it is currently competing. The group has already completed the first round in its application for a Levitt AMP Grant, a national competition in which the creators of five winning proposals are awarded $25,000 each toward the establishment of a free music series. As of this writing, the group holds second place nationwide in the voting stage. Tess Mangum Ocaña, one...

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Monday, October 31, 2016

Ne-Yo Stops by The Ritz Tuesday for a Free Get Out the Vote Concert

Posted By on Mon, Oct 31, 2016 at 4:45 PM

It’s fitting that the man who released a record called Year of the Gentleman would stump for Hilary Clinton over a candidate who is definitely not a gentleman. To get his point across—and to help get out the vote—Ne-Yo will throw a free concert in Raleigh at The Ritz Tuesday night. You can nab tickets by signing up online here, and you can pick them up at either the McKimmon Conference and Training Center or the John Chavis Memorial Park baseball field on N.C. State's campus. Ne-Yo's “Love Trumps Hate” Get Out the Vote performance is part of a series...

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Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Superchunk Plays the State Fair Tomorrow—Stroll Down Memory Lane with Mac McCaughan

Posted By on Tue, Oct 18, 2016 at 1:56 PM

Over the past two years, the North Carolina State Fair has made tremendous strides in improving its music bookings. The giant Dorton Arena concerts that lost thousands of dollars were replaced by smaller acts taking the stage both in the arena and at smaller outdoor stages scattered around the fairgrounds. The results, like last year's showing from Spider Bags, have been solid so far. Tomorrow night, the state fair welcomes another North Carolina institution: Superchunk, the band that helped launch indie rock and cement the Triangle on the map of the music world. Frontman Mac McCaughan told us about his...

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Thursday, September 29, 2016

Talking with Banjo Player Kaia Kater: The Director's Cut

Posted By on Thu, Sep 29, 2016 at 4:35 PM

This is a longer version of an article that appeared in print and online under the title "Tense Strings."  Kaia Kater never wanted to mix her racial identity with her music. She grew up in a mixed-race Canadian family where folk jams were the norm every Thanksgiving and Boxing Day, with a luthier grandfather who made her a guitar—a twin of her grandmother’s instrument—when she had barely started elementary school and her bluegrass-playing fourth-grade teacher gifted her with a bandmate’s banjo soon after. In her early teens, Kater saw an ascending Carolina Chocolate Drops perform at the Ottawa Folk Festival—for...

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