It’s not often that a band comes along that can impress equally on technical skills and on how happy the music makes you feel. Good Old War is one of those bands, and they recently released their fourth album, “Broken Into Better Shape” on Nettwerk Records. They came to the W Hotel’s trendy rooftop bar, POV, to play a free acoustic set that also marked the conclusion of the day’s Record Store Crawl event.
The soundtrack to a spaceship charting a course for another galaxy
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The Canadian duo of Laurence Lafond-Beaulne and Camille Poliquin released their impressive debut album Little Mourning last year, but that hasn’t stopped the Juno Award-nominated Milk & Bone from releasing new music so soon.
A love song told on a countryside porch as the sun’s coming down
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Henry Jamison isn’t a newcomer to the music world, but this debut EP will no doubt leave a great first impression on folk music fans. Conceived on a 8-track recorder, The Rains EP came to fruition after a few solo recording attempts and two years of touring with other musicians.
Sooooooo..Apple Music just bought Cash Money Records, guys. Hashtag "It's on!"
Lori McKenna is one of the most respected songwriters working "in" Nashville today. On her tenth album , The Bird & The Rifle she's stepping out once again and proving that whether it's behind the scenes or on the big stage, she's one of the best around.
On their latest album, Ambulance, Sweden's The Amazing have embarked on yet another sonic sojourn through the cosmos, and we've got a taste of the title track for you to hitch a ride on.
As you may or may not know, it's been a really hard week for the greater South Louisiana family. Yet another historic storm with record-shattering rainfall -- this time in and around my stomping grounds of Baton Rouge, LA -- ravaged and nearly drowned our fair capital city in floodwaters this week. There's not a single family unaffected in some way. Most are safe, but the scope of damage and displacement is historic and near-unfathomable. Louisiana still needs all the help they can get. (Please consider chipping in even a few tax-deductible bucks toward a great organization and a cause very near to my heart.)
“Are you ready to rock like it’s 1993?” asked Belly bassist Gail Greenwood at one point during the band’s show at the 9:30 Club this past weekend. The question met with a fervent affirmation from the packed room. The band had apparently had quite an aggravating trip down I-95 getting to the District and was tired and cranky upon their arrival at the venue, but their mood visibly changed when they came out to find the enthusiastic crowd waiting for them. At times, it was hard to tell who was more in awe at the situation – the audience who were seeing a favorite band reunited and revitalized for the first time in two decades, or the artists themselves, who were clearly not expecting to be met with so much excitement.
One of the greatest potential casualties of our fundamentally damaged copyright laws may be the erasure of not just black cultural history, but the unwinding of the artistic fabric that makes up America. De La Soul knows this first hand.
On his sophomore album, soul/folk powerhouse Michael Kiwanuka aims for the stratosphere...and gets there. #spoilers
Dance punk isn't dead, but it isn't alive either. Zula is something...more.
Punk rock was already in full swing in the UK and New York when X released their first single, “Adult Books,” in 1978 – the Sex Pistols had already come and gone, the Ramones had already released their first three classic albums. By the time the band released their full-length debut Los Angeles in 1980, many bands of the first wave were already gone. Yet in this album, and the several which followed, X served to revitalize the genre, bringing in elements of rockabilly and roots rock that would come to define their sound and make them the standard bearers of a particularly west coast version. The band released five albums with their original line-up before guitarist Billy Zoom left the fold in 1986. Zoom returned to the band in the late 90s, and though they haven’t released any new music since, they have continued to be a touring force to be reckoned with.
Kishi Bashi after two years of intense training under sensei Jeff Lynne
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Because orchestral pop’s time has once again come
They say you have your whole life to make your first album, and once the cat’s out of the bag, you only get a few months to make a second album. (Unless you’re Frank Ocean, but that’s a whole other story.) Fortunately for us, New Zealand-based brother-and-sister duo BROODS far exceeded any expectations for their return to a sold-out 9:30 Club in support of their sophomore album, Conscious.
Georgia and Caleb Nott have built a strong following through their dark and industrial electronic pop, and it shines through in their live show. The energy was palpable from the get-go as the crowd erupted as Georgia made her way to the stage in a dark cloud of smoke. During title track “Conscious”, the black frills on her jacket flew in every direction as she danced all over the stage.
Warner Music exec Mike Jbara is leaving the entertainment monolith to join "HD music" firm MQA. Is there new music format the future of music, or just another Ogg-Vorbis in the also-ran annals of history.
Richmond, Virginia's Avers is back Omega/Whatever, the follow up to 2014's head trip of a debut, Empty Light. Did they survive the sophomore slump? All signs point to HELL YES!
Mild High Club. Great band. Questionably great pun. We've got a the heady title track off of their upcoming album Skiptracing (out 8/26 on Stones Throw Records) for you to toke on.
It was a wild week out there on the campaign trail, and nothing goes better with batshit crazy than SONG!
This week we proudly present one man's journey from the pinnacle of privilege, to the precipice of Presidency, and ultimately straight into our...hearts...forever.
Bobbie Allen has had quite the year. After releasing a few buzz-worthy singles in the past year and singing on tour with Odesza, the DC-based musician (who goes by the stage name Young Summer) recently brought her talents back to a packed U Street Music Hall. Though there’s a profusion of strong synth-pop talent coming out of the woodwork these days, Young Summer proved on Friday night that her smooth and subdued vocals combined with an expansive electronic sound are what has helped her gain recognition and continue to stand out from the pack.
Anticipation. Excitement. Elation. Confusion. Disappointment. This week, Frank Ocean is all of these things and more.
Supremely talented Chicago MC Noname first announced herself to the world two years ago on Chance The Rapper's Acid Rap. On Telefone, she's finally stepping out on her own with one of the strongest statements on womanhood, life in the hood, and life in general that we've heard in recent memory. Marcus K, Dowling and Briana Younger join us to discuss this monumental mix-tape that was well worth the wait.
PLUS! Singer/songwriter Esmé Patterson's critically acclaimed LP We Were Wild, is as perfect a slice of pop-rock that you're going to find in 2016. We've got a new track to help get you acquainted.
Boston’s Hallelujah the Hills released their fifth album, A Band is Something to Figure Out, back in April, and more recently released a 7” EP of six one-minute songs, Movement Scorekeepers. On them, songwriter and frontman Ryan Walsh continues his trend toward balancing the literate (but don’t call them literary!) and the fun aspects in their music that makes them unique. Though the modern realities of making indie rock (such as, you know, having to have “real” jobs outside of music) have gotten in the way of much touring (something to figure out, indeed!), the band finally managed to do a small run of east coast dates in support of the records recently, including a stop in DC at the Black Cat backstage.
The Go-Go’s have been called the most successful all-female rock band of all time, and it’s a hard accolade to argue with. As the first all-female group to write their own songs and play their own instruments to top the Billboard album charts (with their 1981 debut, Beauty and the Beat), the group made history and served as an inspiration for numerous women in music who followed. The group had their heyday in the 1980s, and has remained a foundational band in the music of the era. Although they split initially in 1985, they have reunited several times, and since the release of their fourth ablum God Bless the Go-Go’s in 2001 they have continued to tour regularly. Wanting to go out on a high note, the band announced that they would be doing their final tour in 2016.
Rumor has it that despite the constant cries of “foul”, 98% of all videos (over ONE BILLION) on YouTube are 100% kosher from a licensing perspective. Say what?
Twenty-five years in the making, Nels Cline’s Lovers captures the passion and history of an artist who has spent a lifetime pursuing his musical truth. On his Blue Note debut, Cline mashes together original compositions with interpretations of the music that has informed his career to craft a delicate statement about relationships, the worth of self-indulgence and jazz’s place in the modern music space.
And speaking of modern jazz….
Guitarist Julian Lage - a frequent collaborator of Cline’s - put out a slightly phenomenal album in 2015. We’ve got a taste aof World’s Fair to jog your memory
Mail the Horse loves to jam. Mail the Horse loves to rock. Mail the Horse loves to have fun on stage and show off their musical chops. And to promote their latest EP, Magnolia, Mail the Horse has embarked on a tour that made its first stop at Songbyrd. The band isn’t one for spectacle – instead, they impress by showing their dedication to the ideals of 60s and 70s rock/Americana.
Part of the appeal of the band is the interplay between its members. Keyboardist Michael Hesslein breezed through songs, taking lead vocals and occasionally getting up to play some guitar with the rest of the band. Guitarist Donny Amidon shared in vocal duties, but mainly stood stage right deep concentration on his guitar. Bass player Brendan showed the most emotion of the band, laughing and beaming his way through the set.
When Swans split in 1996, it was supposed to be the finale, with bandleader and single constant member Michael Gira moving on to concentrate on his other project, Angels of Light. Gira reconvened the band, however, in 2010, with a whole new lineup that has since become one of the longest-running in the band’s history. In that time, Swans have released four albums, from 2010’s My Father Will Guide Me Up a Rope to the Sky to this year’s The Glowing Man. Gira had stated before recording even started that The Glowing Man would be the last album with this particular line-up, after which Swans will mutate again to become something new. But before doing that, the band is embarking on one last massive worldwide tour, and Washington, DC fans were fortunate to get a show at the 9:30 Club last week.
This week we're presenting to you songs of sport, victory, and defeat. Shit's about to get REAL in Rio when the 2016 Summer Olympics kick off tonight.
To all of the athletes around the world who are headed to Brazil to take place in this moment of global unity we offer, not just the gift of song, but these words of universal wisdom: