Thursday, September 30, 2010

New music video from Ben Folds & Nick Hornby - "From Above"

After releasing the album Lonely Avenue on Tuesday (check out our review here), Ben Folds and Nick Hornby have released their first music for the song "From Above."

The animated clip, created by Julius Preite who has worked on The Simpsons, brings the story of soul mates never crossing paths from the song's lyrics to life. Watch it below.

Folds is hitting the road to support the album this fall. He'll play the Fillmore in Charlotte on Saturday, Nov. 20. Tickets for the show are on sale now for $41.50 (that includes fees) here.

Electric Owls releasing 'Cullowhee Songs' EP in November

Electric Owls, the project of singer-songwriter Andy Herod (formerly of The Comas), is preparing to release his first new music since his debut album Ain't Too Bright released last year.

The four-song EP, titled Cullowhee Songs, was recorded at Herod's home studio in Asheville and mixed at Echo Mountain Studios. It will be released digitally on Nov. 9 and will be available on 7-inch vinyl only at shows and via the band's website.

Right now, the band's only scheduled show is an EP release party in Asheville at the Grey Eagle on Saturday, Oct. 23. We'll keep you posted if they come back to the Triangle.

You can stream the song "When I Was a Flood" now here. Check out the full track list below.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

The Gay Blades hitting the road, coming to Chapel Hill

Photo by Adam Elmakias
The noisy New York duo The Gay Blades are releasing a new album on Oct. 5 via Triple Crown Records titled Savages. Download the incredibly groovy song "Try To Understand" from the new album below.

An official tour announcement has not been made yet, but a show in Chapel Hill at Local 506 has appeared on their schedule for Sunday, Oct. 24. Tickets are $8 and are on sale now via etix.

[UPDATE: The Gay Blades are now slated to open for Florida band Fake Problems at Local 506 on Oct. 24.]

The band's live shows have been known to be somewhat unpredictable and explosive, so you'll want to check out this show.

Album Review: Tim Kasher - The Game of Monogamy

On his debut solo album, The Game of Monogamy, Tim Kasher tells stories about the battles nearly every man fights.

These are more than trite tales of love won and lost. Kasher explores the mindset of a man in a committed relationship and how a man comes to terms with settling down and growing older from a more mature perspective than most. His lyrics are perceptive and will invoke many “I know exactly what he’s talking about” moments.

“There Must Be Something I’ve Lost” is a brilliant example. Kasher’s character bounces between wondering if old girlfriends think about him and reminding himself that he isn’t the center of their lives. He seems to accept his own insignificance by the end of the track, but it’s an uneasy acceptance.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Minus Sound Research hosting two-nights of music in Carrboro

The artist collective Minus Sound Research, started by local musicians Maria Albani and John Harrison, is celebrating their fifth anniversary this year and will be celebrating with a two-night concert in Carrboro.

The event will be held at the ArtsCenter. The line-up on Friday, Oct. 8 includes The Moaners, The Kingsbury Manx, Free Electric State and Birds & Arrows. The line-up on Saturday, Oct. 9 includes Americans in France, Shark Quest, North Elementary and Organos. Yes, you read correctly. The excellent Shark Quest will be making a rare live appearance.

Tickets for the event are available via etix. A two-night pass is just $13 or a single night ticket is $10.

Album Review: Ben Folds & Nick Hornby - Lonely Avenue

The collaboration between piano pop guru Ben Folds and acclaimed author Nick Hornby, Lonely Avenue, has been a long time coming and the result was worth the wait.

The album flows much like a standard Folds album, balancing cheeky pop songs with moving ballads with great skill. Hornby's masterful wordplay and and sense of humor make he and Folds seem like musical soul mates.

"Levi Johnston's Blues" has been the much talked about track from the album which tells the sad but true story of Sarah Palin's almost son-in-law. Folds whimsical tendencies makes the story feel like any of his other characters while Hornby takes a tough yet sympathetic position on Johnston's life, using his own words from his defunct MySpace page against him in the chorus.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Stream The Avett Brothers new album 'Live, Volume 3'

The Avett Brothers new live album Live, Volume 3 will released on Oct. 3, but all 16 tracks are streaming now via The album was recorded at the band's album release show for I and Love and You in Charlotte last August.

There is also a DVD option with the new live album, either as a standalone or packaged with the CD. Check out videos of "Kick Drum Heart," "Talk of Indolence," "Paranoia in Bb Major" and "I and Love and You" from the DVD below.

The Avetts are gearing up for their big show at Walnut Creek Amphitheatre on Friday, Oct. 8. Tickets are still available here for $41 to $56.50 (that includes fees).

Video: Ivan Howard performs "Eye In the Sky" by Alan Parsons Project

While up in Eau Claire, WI during rehearsals for the upcoming Gayngs tour, Ivan Howard (of The Rosebuds in case you didn't know) took some time to film a video of an acoustic performance of The Alan Parsons Project's song "Eye In the Sky." The result was a beautiful video filmed at sunset and a fantastic version of the 1982 hit.

About a minute in, Howard is joined by Brad Cook (of Megafaun), Michael Lewis (of Happy Apple, Dosh and Andrew Bird) and Mike Noyce (of Bon Iver). I can't repeat enough how cool this performance is.

Don't forget that Gayngs will be performing at the Cat's Cradle in Carrboro on Wednesday, Oct. 6. Tickets for the show are available now via etix for $17. Check out the rest of the band's tour schedule here.

Chatham County Line announces 2010 holiday dates

Chatham County Line are rolling out the dates for their annual holiday tour which always feature some great special guests. This year, the quartet will be joined by Sarah Lee Guthrie and Johnny Irion and Tift Merritt band members Jay Brown and Zeke Hutchins.

The Triangle date is at the Pour House in Raleigh on Wednesday, Dec. 15. Advance tickets are on sale now here for $17.

Check out more holiday dates below and there are likely more to come in the not-too-distant future.

Album Review: Neil Young - Le Noise

Neil Young's latest album is aptly tiled Le Noise. The album features only Young's voice and a slew of guitars with no accompaniment from additional musicians. Le Noise's eight tracks are sparse but noisy, with all but two featuring fuzzed out, reverb soaking guitars.

The two acoustic tunes are really the stand outs of the album, especially "Love and War" which grabs hold of a common lyrical theme for Young in recent years — the pain of war. The lyrics of "Love and War" are moving and very sad, discussing the death of soldiers and the effect it has on those who love them.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

New music video from Superchunk - "Digging For Something" (with The Love Language)

With all the Superchunk posts lately, we let their hilarious new music video for "Digging For Something" slip through the cracks, but here it is. The clip, like the band's many previous videos, pokes fun at themselves. The premise is that Superchunk is going on a reunion tour but Mac is the only original member on the tour and The Love Language join him as the reunited band.

The video is fantastic. You get to see Mac decked out like a hipster, John as a dentist with John Darnielle as his assistant, Laura selling crafts and Jim as a monk. You NEED to watch it and you can below.

Also, in other big Superchunk news, the band's new album Majesty Shredding debuted at number 85 on the Billboard 200. It's the first time the band have made it to the 200, though 1996's Here's Where the Strings Come In did make it to number 50 on the Top Independent Albums chart. So kudos to Superchunk. Check out our review of Majesty Shredding here.

Friday, September 24, 2010

Passion Pit joins Campus Consciousness tour, coming to Chapel Hill

Massachusetts electro-pop quintet Passion Pit have just announced that they're joining the Campus Consciousness tour in October. The tour is half concert and half environmental campaign with the goal of teaching students and others about environmental issues.

The tour will be making two North Carolina stops, one of which is at the Carmichael Auditorium at the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill on Friday, Oct. 29. The show will also double as UNC's homecoming celebration.

Tickets for the show are available to students now for $10 or $15, depending on the seats, at the Carolina Union box office. Tickets for the public and UNC faculty and staff will be available on Tuesday, Oct. 5 at the box office and will be $25 for the public and $15 for faculty and staff.

The Autumn Defense & Sarah Lee Guthrie & Johnny Irion announce fall dates

Photo by Mae Moreno
The Autumn Defense, which features Wilco members John Stirratt and Pat Sansone, are gearing up to release their new album Once Around via Yep Roc Records on November 2.

The group will hit the road in November to support the album with folk duo Saraha Lee Guthrie and Johnny Irion. The tour will stop at Durham's new club Casbah on Tuesday, Nov. 16. Ticket info is not available yet, but we'll keep you posted.

Check out the song "Back of My Mind" from Once Around below along with the complete tour schedule.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Stream Ben Folds & Nick Hornby's album 'Lonely Avenue'

The long awaited collaboration between Ben Folds and Nick Hornby, an album titled Lonely Avenue, is almost here (it will be released on Sept. 28 via Nonesuch Records). You don't have to wait to hear it though. The album is streaming now on Ben Folds' MySpace page.

Folds is hitting the road in support of the album in November, but unfortunately, he has no plans to play the Triangle, though he will play The Fillmore in Charlotte on Saturday, Nov. 20. Tickets for the show will go on sale on Friday, Sept. 24 at 10 a.m. here for $41.50 (that includes fees).

Check out Folds' full tour schedule below.

Win tickets to The National at Memorial Auditorium

The National will hit Raleigh's Memorial Auditorium on Monday, October 4, in support of their latest album, High Violet, and, with the help of the fine folks at Cat's Cradle, we want to help you go.

To win a pair of tickets to the show, email us at trianglemusicblog at gmail dot com no later than Monday, September 27, at noon with "The National Tickets" in the subject line. We'll notify a randomly-drawn winner Monday afternoon.

Tickets to the show are $33-36 and available through Ticketmaster.

Update: This is clearly going to be a popular giveaway, so please, ONE ENTRY PER PERSON, not per email address. Thanks!

2010 Troika Festival line-up is here (most of it)

The annual Troika Festival in Durham is quickly approaching, well it's on November 4-6 in 2010, and it's time to start getting excited. The local music festival has announced the initial line-up, which includes 44 bands thus far.

Among them is one of the biggest acts of the year, Chatham County Line, who will play the new Motorco Music hall during the festival. Other acts include, Birds of Avalon, Dillon Fence, Hammer No More the Fingers, Mount Moriah, North Elementary, Phil Cook and His Feat and Valient Thorr. Check out the full list below.

There are still more bands to be announced and we'll let you know once they are.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

UPDATE: Carolina Chocolate Drops & The Low Anthem announce December dates, coming to Raleigh

Nonesuch Records labelmates Carolina Chocolate Drops and The Low Anthem are teaming up for a short run of dates in the south in December. The tour kicks off in Atlanta on Dec. 4 and wraps in Raleigh at the Lincoln Theatre on Dec. 11.

Tickets for the Raleigh show are scheduled to go on sale to the public on Friday, Oct. 1 via etix for $18 and a fan pre-sale will begin on Tuesday, Sept 28 via Carolina Chocolate Drops' website.

[UPDATE: The Low Anthem are no longer playing the Raleigh show on December 11. The band will be heading to Nashville that night to play the Grand Ole Opry at the Ryman Auditorium with EmmyLou Harris. Carolina Chocolate Drops will still play the show. A new opener has not been announced.]

Stone Temple Pilots reroute tour, NC shows rescheduled

Stone Temple Pilots have decided to take a break from their current tour which has caused them to have to reschedule a few weeks of dates including their shows in Raleigh and Charlotte.

The original date for the show at the Downtown Raleigh Amphitheatre was on Tuesday, Oct. 5 and has now been rescheduled for Tuesday, Oct. 19. Tickets for the previous date will be honored. Black Rebel Motorcycle Club are still slated to open the show. Tickets for the show are still available here for $52 to $62.50.

The Charlotte date at the Road Runner Mobile Amphitheatre has also bee rescheduled from Wednesday, Oct. 6 to Wednesday, Oct. 20. Tickets for this show are still available here for $62.50 to $79.50.

Check out the full updated tour schedule below.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Minus the Bear extend fall tour, coming to Raleigh

Seattle band Minus the Bear are in the midst of a hefty North American tour right now in support of their latest album Omni, released in May, and are showing no signs of slowing down. After spending November touring Europe with Jimmy Eat World, the band will hit the road in the U.S again.

The new fall dates will bring the band to the Lincoln Theatre in Raleigh on Tuesday, Nov. 30. The Whigs and Dead Confederate will open the show. Tickets for the show go on sale Friday, Sept. 24 via etix for $20.

Check out Minus the Beat's music video for "My Time" from their latest album below where you'll also find their complete tour schedule.

Video: Superchunk performs "Digging For Something" & "Precision Auto" on 'Late Night'

Superchunk took the television last night for the first time in 16 years to promote their new album Majesty Shredding. Joined by John Darnielle, the band rocked their catchy single "Digging For Something" and stuck around for a raucous bonus web performance of the classic tune "Precision Auto." Check out both performances below.

Check out our review and photos from Superchunk's recent show at the Nasher Museum of Art in Durham here. Check out the band's upcoming tour schedule below the videos.

Album Review: The Moaners - Nocturnal

The Moaners new album, Nocturnal, lives up to its name. Most of these songs sound like they are meant to be played after dark and the brightest of them sounds like dusk.

Despite this limited tonal palate, Nocturnal has great variety in style. It kicks off with a drum machine beat on the lively “Humid Air”, but quickly moves on to tunes with more grit (“Cowboy Bob”) and somberness (“Raggedy”). There’s a dryness to the sound, particularly from the drums, that gives the album an open and crisp feel like fall leaves crunching underfoot.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Video: Lost in the Trees plays NPR's Tiny Desk series

Lost in the Trees have become a hot property lately. Since re-releasing their album All Alone in an Empty House via Anti- Records in August. They've toured the country and during their travels, recorded a live session for NPR's Tiny Desk series.

The band played three songs, "All Alone in an Empty House," "Song For the Painter" and "Time Taunts Me." Check out video the performance here (you can also stream or download the audio).

Check out Lost in the Trees upcoming tour dates below.

Macy Gray announces fall tour, coming to Durham

Soulful and eccentric singer Macy Gray just released her fifth full-length album in June titled The Sellout and is preparing to tour North America this fall in support of it.

The tour will bring Gray to Durham's Carolina Theatre on Tuesday, Oct. 26. Tickets for the show will go on sale on Friday, Sept. 24 at 11 a.m. here for $30 (or $25 for Carolina Theatre members or those by group seats).

Check out the music video for the uplifting first single, "Beauty in the World" from her latest album below as well as her complete upcoming tour schedule.

Megafaun breathe new life into 'Sounds of the South' in Durham

All photos by Kevin Norris
Sunday afternoon brought the final performance of Megafaun and Fight the Big Bull's three night stand at the Hayti Heritage Center in Durham. As the late afternoon light shined through the beautiful stained glass windows of the former church as Megafaun and Fight the Big Bull took the stage.

From the opening song, "Green Sally Up," it was clear that this wasn't going to be Alan Lomax's version of "Sounds of the South," but a completely new take on the thirteen songs the groups chose to tackle from the 105 track collection.

Each of Megafaun's three members showcased their vocal talents throughout the set. Megafaun and Richmond's Fight The Big Bull were joined on stage by Sharon Van Etten and Justin Vernon on many songs, which added vocal transcendence to those numbers.

Friday, September 17, 2010

Superchunk rock the Nasher lawn to kick off 'Majesty Shredding' tour

All photos by Kevin Norris
Veteran rockers Superchunk launched their new tour in support of their new album Majesty Shredding Thursday night on the lawn of the Nasher Museum of Art in Durham.

With their amps cranked to eleven, the quartet offered up a set spanning their entire career. As always, the set was unpredictable, including such classic rarities as "Shallow End," "Let It Go" and "Song For Marion Brown."

The Majesty Shredding songs were easily highlights of the set which included the live premiere of "My Gap Feels Weird." The downtempo number "Fractures In Plaster" and the light pop of "Rosemarie" were nice breaks in the set allowing the ears to recover from the onslaught of roaring guitars.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

The Love Language schedules Raleigh & Durham shows

Local superstars The Love Language are currently heading west to kick off a tour supporting Local Natives, but they've just scheduled two big local shows when they return home in October.

They'll play the newly reopened Kings Barcade in Raleigh on Thursday, Oct. 21 and the brand new Motorco Music Hall in Durham on Saturday, Oct. 23. Ticket details for both shows are not available yet, but we'll keep you posted. Veelee and Laughing Man will open the Raleigh show. Twelve Thousand Armies and Cashes Rivers will open the Durham show.

[UPDATE: Kings tickets are $10 and are available now via etix. Motorco tickets are available now here for $11.54 (that includes fees).]

Freelance Whales & Miniature Tigers team up, coming to Chapel Hill

Indie bands Freelance Whales from Queens, NY and Phoenix, AZ band Miniature Tigers are teaming up for about weeks this fall. Freelance Whales are supporting their debut album Weathervanes and Miniature Tigers are supporting their sophomore album Fortress.

The two bands will play Local 506 in Chapel Hill on Sunday, Nov. 7. Tickets will be $10 in advance and available via etix.

Check out a performance of the excellent song "Ghosting" by Freelance Whales below as well as the music video for "Gold Skull" by Miniature Tigers.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

The Temptations & The Four Tops team up, coming to Durham

A pair of old school Motown groups are hitting the road for sporadic shows together this fall and into the winter. Those groups are The Temptations and The Four Tops, each of which still has one original member in the group.

The tour will bring the pair to the Durham Performing Arts Center (DPAC) on Wednesday, Feb. 9, 2011. Tickets for the show will start at $38 and go on sale here on Friday, Sept. 24 at 10 a.m.

To get an idea of what both these groups sound like and how they perform these days, check out videos recent performances of some of their biggest hits below.

Album Review: Megafaun - Heretofore

Trying to categorize bands can be a particularly tough task, but when you're talking about Triangle trio Megafaun, it's always been impossible.

The band keeps its eclectic nature alive on their latest release, a mini-album titled Heretofore. The album's six tracks are all over the place, but somehow manage to have a bizarre, indescribable cohesiveness.

Things start with the swirling, wall of sound of the title track, "Heretofore," while a fairly steady beat chugs throughout behind saturated vocals. Things turn on a dime with "Carolina Days," Megafaun's most straightforward pop song to date, complete with a shimmering slide guitar solo towards the end.

Hopscotch Day 2: 9th Wonder 'All Night'

All photos by Joanna Palmisano
We've got a little more Hopscotch Festival coverage for you. Photographer Joanna Palmisano has been kind enough to share some of her photos from the festival with us, starting with a set from 9th Wonder's big show at Lincoln Theatre on Friday, Sept. 10 featuring Raekwon, Kaze, Rapsody and many, many others. Enjoy a few photos from the big party below.

Check out a lot more Hopscotch coverage here.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Gayngs add dates to fall tour, coming to Carrboro

The indie supergroup Gayngs, which we've talked about before, have just added some new dates to their fall tour in support of their debut album Relayted. The band features local heavyhitters Ivan Howard (of The Rosebuds), all the members of Megafaun and ex-Triangle resident and superstar Justin Vernon (of Bon Iver).

The tour will bring their groovy tunes and massive group to the Cat's Cradle in Carrboro on Wednesday, Oct. 9. Glasser will open the show. Tickets are on sale now for $17 via etix.

Check out a performance of the song "The Gaudy Side of Town" from the group's debut show in Minneapolis in May below. I don't know if the tour will feature all the elaborate decor and all 23 members of the group like that show, but it will certainly be a show to remember.

Bob Dylan announces fall tour, coming to Winston-Salem

He may be 69 years old and mostly unintelligible live these days, but legendary singer-songwriter Bob Dylan shows no signs of stopping, and is hitting the road yet again on a new U.S. tour in October.

The dates will bring Dylan and His Band to the Lawrence Joel Veterans Memorial Coliseum in Winston-Salem on Saturday, Oct. 16. Tickets will go on sale on Saturday, Sept. 18 at 10 a.m. here for $53.40.

He'll also be playing at the Halton Arena in Charlotte on Thursday, Oct. 14. Tickets for that show will be $55.30 and will be on sale soon here.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Album Review: Superchunk - Majesty Shredding

It's been nine long years since Superchunk's last album Here's To Shutting Up was released. It was a quite a departure for the band which explored new sonic textures and instruments, even pedal steel guitar, which were quite a change for the group.

With that said, the band's new effort Majesty Shredding is easily a return to the classic, in your face, Superchunk sound the band has cultivated for more than twenty years, but the sonic complexity and maturity of their years are evident.

The quartet comes out of the gate swinging with album's first single "Digging For Something" which features blazing guitars, an infectious chorus and backing vocals by John Darnielle (of The Mountain Goats).

Hopscotch Day 3: I Was Totally Destroying It, First Rate People & Kooley High

Local indie pop rockers I Was Totally Destroying kicked off Hopscotch's Saturday evening festivities at Deep South. They played an upbeat, energetic set that the whole crowd really enjoyed. Singer and keyboard player Rachel Hirsh often channeled fellow female rocker Hayley Williams of Paramore, giving her an intense, confident air. The fun continued between songs as all of the band's members joked with each other and the audience.

After what seemed like a quick fifty minute set, I Was Totally Destroying It packed up to make way for Lonnie Walker, another great Triangle band. Some skipping around trying to work out a few more schedule kinks meant my missing out on most of Lonnie Walker, but if the last ten minutes of their set is any indication as to the quality of the rest of their set, they too were excellent.

Hopscotch Day 3: Megafaun presents 'A Seamless Night of Sound'

All photos by Emily Price
Kings Barcade played host to a night of brilliant acts hand selected by Megafaun to open for what would be the band’s final show for quite a while. The night wasn’t really seamless - there were set changes and downtime just like every other venue - but during the sets of the electronic artists, there where no breaks.

The crowd drifted in and out all night. The experimental and patient nature of these artists rewarded those who stayed with an open mind. This wasn’t the type of show to just drop in on.

Things kicked off with Megafaun improvising an ambient tune on stage. Phil Cook was on guitar, Joe Westerlund on drums and Brad Cook operated a laptop and sampler. The resulting song was sparse and open. Some drones came from the sampler, singular guitar notes hung in the hair and the drums were brushed as lightly as possible.

Hopscotch Day 3: Sharon Van Etten, Midtown Dickens & Lost in the Trees

The second half of the Trekky Records day party at The Pour House was packed. Large amounts of people would leave after every performance, but they were quickly replaced.

Sharon Van Etten returned to the stage less than 24 hours after an incredible set the night before and she packed the house again. The crowd was a little less rowdy than night before and the PA was turned up a notch so it was possible to hear her even in the back of the venue. Instead of ending softly like the night before, Van Etten and her band closed out with a pretty loud rendition of "Don’t Do It" that even included a brief guitar solo from Van Etten.

Midtown Dickens was delayed a bit by a lengthy sound check, but the wait didn’t temper any of the band’s exuberance. They opened enthusiastically with "Old Dogs." The rambunctious group was as excited as a band could be to play and it showed. Multi-instrumentalist and vocalist Catherine Edgenton was on the verge of tears of joy as she explained to the audience how inspirational Hopscotch had been to her.

Hopscotch Day 3: The Love Language, No Age & Public Enemy

Public Enemy
All photos by Emily Price
Raleigh natives The Love Language kicked off the main stage show on the last night of Hopscotch to a decent sized crowd that, unfortunately, seemed generally unenthusiastic. The group performed an absolutely fantastic, highly energetic set, playing an even mix of songs from their July release, Libraries, and last year's self-titled LP.

For their last song, the band turned to the crowd for a request, and after a few moments of shouts from the audience, they settled on "Blue Angel." It began to drizzle as frontman Stu McLamb sang the first line, appropriately enough, but most of the rain held off until later in the evening. Their excellent forty minute set came to an end entirely too soon.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Hopscotch Day 2: Ryan Gustafson & Schooner

Hopscotch delivered once again with local musician Ryan Gustafson, who played at The Pour House on Friday night. The former Boxbomb frontman and Durham native played an excellent set that was a great kick-off to another night of music in the capitol city.

As Gustafson took the stage, The Pour House had a decent crowd but still wasn't quite full. That changed within about fifteen minutes, as the club went from decently full to almost packed. The crowd was pretty laid back for the duration of Gustafson's set, but remained fairly enthusiastic as he and his band cranked out some solid southern rock-tinged tunes.

Hopscotch Day 2: Sharon Van Etten, Bowerbirds & Fucked Up

All photos by Emily Price
By 10:30 p.m. The Pour House was all ready one in, one out in anticipation of Sharon Van Etten. The back half of the room was overly chatty and it’s a shame because they missed a really incredible set.

Van Etten has a new band that gives her songs a fullness that wasn’t there before and doesn’t take anything away from her strikingly honest delivery. There’s a look in her eye that suggests a range of emotions from pain to defiance to joy. It’s impossible to take your eyes off of her. When she comes to the climax of a song, her eyes widen, she looks up and it’s unmistakeable that Sharon Van Etten is as earnest a performer as there is.

Hopscotch Day 2: The Rosebuds, Broken Social Scene, & Panda Bear

Broken Social Scene
All photos by Emily Price
With lots of shade and plenty of room, City Plaza was a great place to kick off the second night of the Hopscotch Festival.

The Rosebuds with Brad Cook from Megafaun on bass and Logan Matheny from Roman Candle on drums were put in a tough position opening the show at 6 p.m. The crowd was still waking up and didn’t quite fill the space between the stage and the sound board, but the band did their best to warm up them up. Lead singer Ivan Howard tried on several occasions to get the crowd to sing along, but didn’t have much success until they played “Nice Fox.” Even then, Howard stopped playing and encouraged the crowd to sing louder before finishing the song.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Hopscotch Day 2: Pattern is Movement, Megafaun & Filthy Bird

All photos by Emily Price
During the day on Friday (Sept. 10), Hopscotch Music Festival day parties were abundant. Pattern is Movement and Megafaun performed at The Pour House and Filthybirds played Chris Tamplin's last Local Beer Local Band at Tir Na Nog. Many other bands played too, but we have photos of those three bands for you to check out below, all taken by Emily Price.

Stay tuned for even more Hopscotch coverage and check out already posted coverage here.

Friday, September 10, 2010

Hopscotch Day 1: American Aquarium

All photos by Emily Price
American Aquarium rocked the Lincoln Theatre on the first night of Hopscotch Music Festival and were even joined on stage by the lovely Caitlin Cary for a few songs. Check out a bunch of photos of the set below taken by Emily Price.

Check out photos and a write up of the sets by Max Indian and Ponderosa at Lincoln Theatre earlier in the evening here.

Hopscotch Day 1: Sleepy Sun & Akron/Family

All night I was hearing people talk about how excited they were to see Akron/Family at the Pour House so it was no surprise to find the venue almost full.

Those that showed up early had the pleasure of seeing San Francisco rockers Sleepy Sun scorch the stage. The band sounds like an amalgam of 70’s classic rock – particularly Led Zeppelin – and they can really wail. At one point, singers Bret Constantino and Rachel Williams held a harmony with a squealing guitar for a piecing banshee-like sound that was pure rock. Sleepy Sun was impressive, but they couldn’t compete with what was about to come.

Hopscotch Day 1: Old Bricks & Best Coast

Best Coast
All photos by Kevin Norris
Promising Triangle-area locals Old Bricks kicked off Hopscotch at The Hive at Busy Bee (in front of a wall of old bricks, fittingly). A small crowd was packed in tight as the layout of the bar funneled audience members to the front. It felt more crowded than it was.

The band’s haunting sounds didn’t struggle to fill the small venue and the band laid the reverb on thick. The lyrics were unintelligible, but the ghostly effect was engaging. At the end of the set, the 25 or so folks that stuck around were treated to a brief, but energetic percussion breakdown. Old Bricks is certainly a band that local music fans should keep an eye out for in the future.


The line at Tir Na Nog was down the block. It’s pretty clear that Best Coast was one of the most anticipated early sets of Hopscotch for a lot of folks. The pub was packed and sweltering 30 minutes before the band even took the stage.

Hopscotch Day 1: Ponderosa & Max Indian

Max Indian
All photos by Kevin Norris
The first night of the Hopscotch Music Festival brought Georgia southern rockers Ponderosa to the Lincoln Theatre. The band tore through a tight set of soulful rock and roll with style and swagger for a small crowd of about a hundred people. They were the first band of the festival (not counting the earlier day party), so the crowd hadn't filed in yet and they certainly missed out.

Later that evening, the lads of Max Indian took the Lincoln Theatre stage for a crowd of about 400 people and rocked their superb pop charm. Carter Gaj led the band through what some are saying could be the band's last show for a while. Talk of a Max Indian hiatus has been floating around for some time. The crowd there danced and grooved to the band's catchy sounds. One attendee could be overheard saying "These guys are awesome" then asking his companion "where are they from?" Right up the road in Carrboro, my friend.

Check out photos of these sets below and stay tuned for more Hopscotch coverage later today and throughout the weekend.

Thursday, September 09, 2010

Durham's new club Casbah hosting grand opening September 15

There are new venues popping up all over the place in the Triangle right now. Kings just reopened in late August, Motorco Music Hall is opening in late September and there's the new Durham club Casbah which has just opened.

The first two nights, Sept. 10 and 11, will feature a Dae the DJ and DJ Nugz, but the official grand opening is on Wednesday, Sept. 15 with Caitlin Cary and Matt Douglas of Small Ponds with Joy Kills Sorrow. Tickets are available for $10 in advance via etix.

Casbah is located in a former flower shop in Brightleaf Square at 1007 W. Main St. The club is said to hold about 288 people according to booker Steve Gardner who recently talked to Frank Stasio on WUNC's The State of Things (listen to the interview here). Check out how the club's schedule currently shakes out below.

Wednesday, September 08, 2010

Ben Kweller announces fall tour, coming to Carrboro

Singer-songwriter Ben Kweller is hitting the road this fall on a headlining tour after spending the summer opening for Barenaked Ladies, including a show in Raleigh in July.

Kweller will be playing the Cat's Cradle in Carrboro on Monday, Nov. 29. Quirky singer-songwriter Julia Nunes will open the show. Tickets go on sale on Friday, September 10 via etix for $16.

His latest album Changing Horses was released in 2009. Check out the video for the song "Wantin' Her Again" from the album below.

Win tickets to The Old Ceremony at Cat's Cradle

The Old Ceremony are gearing up to hold an album release show for their latest, Tender Age, at Cat's Cradle next Friday, September 17, and the fine folks at Cat's Cradle have generously offered up a pair of tickets to one lucky Triangle Music reader.

In order to win, e-mail trianglemusicblog at gmail dot com no later than noon on Monday, September 13 with Old Ceremony Tickets in the subject line. We will randomly choose and notify the winner that afternoon.

Tickets to the show are $10 in advance, $12 day of and are available through etix.

Album Review: Hurricane Bells - Down Comes the Rain EP

Hurricane Bells is at it again, this time with Down Comes the Rain, the five-song follow-up to last year's debut Tonight is the Ghost. Steve Schlitz once again takes the helm in terms of the EP's creation, from the performing to the producing. The final result is a decent EP that helps satiate any cravings you may have for new Hurricane Bells material.

Hurricane Bells' cover of East River Pipe's "Make a Deal With the City" opens the EP with a solid rhythm and cool guitars, followed closely by "The Waiting Song," one of only two original songs on Down Comes the Rain. Neither "The Waiting Song" nor "The Deep End" are tremendously different from anything on Tonight is the Ghost, but they're nonetheless a good example of chilled-out indie rock.

Tuesday, September 07, 2010

307 Knox Records releases free compilation ahead of Hopscotch

Ahead of their big day party (dubbed Knox with an X) during the Hopscotch Festival on Thursday, Sept. 9 at Kings Barcade from 12:30-5 p.m., 307 Knox Records has released a fantastic free downloadable compilation album featuring all of the bands playing the party.

The album features Birds and Arrows, Humble Tripe, North Elementary, Midtown Dickens, Phil Cook & His Feat, Brett Harris, Gray Young and Tea and Tempests. Check out the full track list below and download the compilation HERE (scroll down to the bottom of the page and click the small Hopscotch poster to download the zip file).

Album Review: Jukebox the Ghost - Everything Under the Sun

On Jukebox the Ghost's sophomore album Everything Under the Sun, their first album for North Carolina label Yep Roc, the band lets their pop energy and solid musicianship shine on the album's twelve songs.

The power trio, composed of keyboards, guitar and drums, hits the ground at full speed with the infectious descending piano riff and undeniable groove "Schizophrenia" (which the band recently performed on the Late Show with David Letterman; watch the video here).

Lost in the Trees plays Austin City Limits' 'Satellite Sets'

Back in March, Lost in the Trees stopped by the Austin City Limits stage during South By Southwest to film some songs for a series called "Satellite Stages." All these months later, the session has finally made it to the web.

Check out the band performing "Tall Trees," "I See a River" and "Fireplace" here.

Be sure to catch Lost in the Trees at Trekky's free day party during the Hopscotch Festival on Saturday, Sept. 11 at The Pour House from 2-5:30 p.m. Butterflies, Embarrassing Fruits, Sharon Van Etten, Midtown Dickens and Justin Ruggiano will also be performing.

Monday, September 06, 2010

Album Review: Cotton Jones - Tall Hours in the Glowstream

The new Cotton Jones album, Tall Hours in the Glowstream, takes its inspiration from a contemplative spot in the band’s home county of Cumberland, Md.; however, most of the album was recorded in a living room in Winterville, Ga. This separation most likely contributes to the album’s intimate, yet distant daydream-like sound.

The band combines elements from 50’s and 60’s pop, folk, and country for a sound that is most effectively described as Americana and puts it behind a hazy filter. The result is the songs that feel like fond memories. The percussion, from snare to slap stick, cuts through the haziness balancing the compositions and bringing the listener back to the present.