Huh What & Where: Spotlight & Semi-Free Bandcamp

Huh What & Where

Full disclosure, this post was originally written for L.A. label HW&W’s 1.5 day-long Bandcamp free for all. Although it’s ended, not all hope is lost–16 of the albums on their Bandcamp are still available for free while the others are affordable, with prices ranging from $3-$10. I’ve taken it upon myself to cycle through the free ones to make up for this semi-late PSA and to introduce one of my favorite labels, Huh What & Where.

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Mad Decent Block Party ’14

Dillon Francis at Merriweather Post Pavilion. Credit: Helen Jiang

What do you get when you throw nine artists, whose musical style ranges from pop noise to dubstep, together? You get the third stop of the pioneering Mad Decent Block Party, and what a day it was. Children Of The Night, Trippy Turtle, Wave Racer, Cashmere Cat, Sleigh Bells, Wolfgang Gartner, Dillon Francis, Diplo, and Flux Pavilion took to the stage for a day of thumping beats and anthemic music that kept the crowd dancing at Merriweather Post Pavilion. Read the rest of this entry

The Inaugural Hudson Music Project: Big Sounds, Big Lights, and a Bigger Storm

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Photo Credit: Kevin Earle

Hudson or Mudson?

The three day music festival hosted at Winston Farm, the same 800 acre property as Woodstock ’94, was an experience defined by big sound, big lights and a huge storm.  Organized by MCP Presents and SFX Entertainment, The Hudson Project started out strong with the first of the 20,000 attendees arriving late on Thursday in high spirits.  Concertgoers flooded into the grounds throughout Thursday evening, creativity rampant among the campsites as the tent cities that had popped up overnight fostered a strong sense of community. When Friday morning rolled around, the festival was in full swing.

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BonnaReview: The Good, The Bad, and the Honorably Mentioned

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Photo Credit: Jordan Farley

THE GOOD

JACK WHITE

It started with a full moon–a television hummed a strip of colorful lines across the screen. He walked onto the stage, his hair a flurried mess, his pants neatly pressed, suspenders suspending and shirt hanging on him the way E.L. James would describe. Jack White stole Bonnaroo. For me, at least, he was the biggest surprise of the entire festival. Yeah, Jack White, he’s a talented dude. Sure, I’d heard of The White Stripes and The Raconteurs, heard “Seven Nation Army”, but never did I expect a show like that. He began with “High Ball Stepper”, making it known that this was going to be a guitar heavy rock concert. The stage was lit blue, but besides that, there were no distracting graphics or blinding lights like other headliners (eh, Kanye). If you’ve never seen Jack White, he looks like Johnny Depp as Edward Scissorhands, minus the hardware of course. There’s a very genuine demeanor to his stage presence. He makes it known that he is there solely to entertain, to please and excite the crowd. He’d ask the crowd if we wanted him to keep playing, which, of course, we did. In between songs, he would thank the crowd, he would thank young musicians, and tell stories about his family and children. He was a very humbled performer which made him even more exciting to watch. And then there’s the music itself. My gosh, never have I ever heard a guitar played with such conviction. And he was backed by a pedal steel guitar and a theremin. Yes, a freaking theremin, because Jack White is that cool. Highlights included his performance of “Steady As She Goes” and his 10-minute, amazing, scream-sing worthy rendition of “Seven Nation Army”.

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Album Review: No More by Jeremih & Shlohmo

Album artwork for Jeremih & Shlohmo’s EP No More

After Yours Truly and Adidas Originals announced their pairing of R&B prince Jeremih and WeDidIt cofounder Shlohmo for their Songs From Scratch series, one could say the Internet was a little more than overeager. Shlohmo’s renowned remix abilities have given listeners an impossibly relaxing yet tasteful take on Jeremih and Natasha Money’s smooth croons in “All The Time” that turned into lazy mornings and late night plays of the remade “Fuck You All The Time.”

Despite legal and label issues along the way, Shlohmo and Jeremih kept building the hype for their No More EP by releasing the eponymous single “No More” on Valentine’s Day. Today, July 17, has a double purpose as Jeremih’s 27th birthday and the album release date. Nab the six track EP for free here.

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DC Networking Events We’re Stoked For: Independence Day pres. by Empire of Kings Music Group

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Not very often do DC Hip Hop artists, the district’s finest in fashion, and the city’s entrepreneur community collaborate for an event.

Yet this Saturday, July 19th from 1pm-6pm all three of these collectives are coming together for Independence Day, presented by Empire of Kings Music Group.

Call it a networking event, a celebration of the DC’s finest young minds, a music show, or whatever makes sense to ya’ll, it’s going to be DOPE and if you can make it out to Renaissance Square in Hyattsville, MD (4307 Jefferson St. right across from the Hyattsville Bus Boys and Poets), well than yo..be there!!

Performances by DC’s own Hand$um Robb, Flex Kartel, Dugee F. Buller, Jamaal & Amber Lamaaj Monae and appearances by Caitlin Martin, Alex Byrd, and the Bucktown native who “cultivates greatness“, Mental Supreme.

Just to Reiterate..

Independence Day presented by Empire of Kingz Music Group
Hip Hop Show/Networking Event
Starts: 07/19/2014 1:00PM

Ends: 2014-07-19:00.000
Duration: 05:00

4307 Jefferson Street
Hyattsville, MD
20781

Shows We’re Stoked For: Alex G, Elvis Depressedly, Teen Suicide + MORE @ All Saints Church – 7/19

Alex G

Last Saturday I had the pleasure of catching Philly native and bedroom pop extraordinaire Alex G in Brooklyn with a whole bunch of great bands, courtesy of a day long festival put on by Exploding in Sound Records and Impose Magazine. Playing near the end of the day, Alex burned through a 30 minute set with enough raw and visceral energy to impress America’s hippest and harshest critics, while still delivering his simple, thoughtful, blend of indie rock. Read the rest of this entry

Preview: Mad Decent Block Party ’14

 

Cheshire cheesin'. Photo Credit: Lotanna Obodozie

Cheshire cheesin’. Photo Credit: Lotanna Obodozie

Already in its sixth year, the Mad Decent Block Party has spread to an unprecedented 22 North American cities with an even bigger lineup of 58 banging artists.

What’s this “mad decent” shindig we speak of? It’s the brainchild of producer-DJ-label founder-radio host-TV host-extraordinaire Thomas Wesley Pentz, aka Diplo. What started out as a record label showcase channeling quintessential block party vibes from Philly, the MDBP has now spread across the nation into Canada and South Africa and is set to follow the likes of Holy Ship with its own Mad Decent Boat Party into The Bahamas.

This year’s DMV stop is once again at Merriweather Post Pavilion on August 1 and tickets are still available. Diplo, Dillon Francis, Sleigh Bells, Flux Pavilion, Cashmere Cat, Trippy Turtle, Wolfgang Gartner, Wave Racer, and Children Of The Night are all slated to perform to a crowd yearning for one last weekend of dancing before summer ends and heralds the beginning of the school year grind.

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Album Review: niggas on the moon – Death Grips

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Death Grips have stepped out of the shadows again and brought with them their new release “niggas on the moon,” which is technically side A of a double album is titled The Powers That B. This release is the first half of a double album and contains only 8 tracks at the moment. At this point in Death Grips’ career you’re probably familiar with their shtick and know what to expect when it comes to their releases. The Sacramento-based experimental hip-hop creates music that mixes elements of hip hop and electronica in a way that results in violent and sometimes frightening music that pushes the limits of the genre. This time around Death Grips don’t disappoint, delivering their signature alternative hip-hop style. Death Grips have come back with a refreshing release that is a satisfying agglomeration of the past years of their work.

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Opener Review: Craft Spells, Juan Wauters, Trump Weeds at the Rock & Roll Hotel

Craft Spells, Juan Wauters

Photos by Juan Wauters, Craft Spells.

Opening for Crystal Stilts at the Rock & Roll Hotel were three bands that brought an interesting and diverse mix of music to the table.

The Rock & Roll Hotel was filled….with all of 10 people to listen to Trump Weeds, a band that has only recorded a single song. Despite the moderately empty room, the band grooved on, not minding the lack of an audience one bit. The young trio was there for the music and no more. You could feel that it was just one of those lets-jam-and-make-some-music-even-if-the-room-is-empty kind of performances–simple and solid.

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