It looked like a Hype Williams' video set.
"Some of y'all ain't put on a suit since [my] last court date. So I really do appreciate you going through the trouble."
With those words of thanks, T.I. kicked off his red carpeted, black-tie birthday celebration at Atlanta's Biltmore Saturday night. It doubled as an album release party for Paper Trail perhaps the year's most anticipated album second to Lil Wayne's Tha Carter III. The invite-only guest list overflowed with Atlanta's industry elite all of whom put their own unique spin on the required black-tie wardrobe.
Kenny Burns sported a shimmery gold Dolce & Gabbana blazer. "Project Runway" finalist Mychael Knight posed with a client wearing his own custom designed dress. Former "America's Top Model" contestant Toccara showed up in jeans and a black wifebeater.
In preparation for the release of Mercury Rev's first new album in four years, Snowflake Midnight, was featured on NPR's "All Things Considered" this weekend. During the interview the pioneering avant-psych. rockers from Catskills, NY discussed their experimental approaches to both songwriting and recording amongst other things.
Click here to listen listen to the interview.
Snowflake Midnight hits the streets tomorrow (Sept. 30) via Yep Roc. There will also be a free instrumental companion album, titled Strange Attractor available for free from Mercuryrev.com tomorrow as well.
The group will embark on a full U.S. tour in December as well. More details will be made available as they come in.
Photo courtesy of Yep Roc.
Chock up the martyr points for Antiquiet.com blogger Kevin "Swerl" Cogill, because according to Billboard.com "Best Buy is set to be the exclusive retailer for Guns N' Roses decade-plus-in-the-making new album Chinese Democracy before year's end..."
Cogill is best known as the blogger who leaked Guns n Roses perpetually forthcoming album, Chinese Democracy.
As a result of his leakage Cogill now faces up to three years in prison and $250,000 in fines. One cannot help but wonder how much Skwerl's activities had to do with seeing the album's this year.
One thing thats been hit particularly hard by the Orwellian gas shortage thats crippling the Southeast is attendance at local shows. Brooklyn trio Vivian Girls tore it up for the enthusiastic, but sparse crowd that ventured to the Earl on Sunday night. The somber and freewheeling trio ran through a hazy batch of songs performed exactly as they appear on their album. Michigans Tyvek and local trio Rizzudo closed the show, with respectively ramshackle and adept performances.
But most people wandered out to the The Earl's front patio during the show to socialize and speculate about the fuel crisis. Will it really be weeks before its over? Why isn't this making national headlines? And where is Sonny Perdue during all of this? No radio, or television address, not even a blog saying "people, this is what we need to do..."
At least he posed on the capital steps and prayed for rain at the peak of the drought last year. Now hes MIA when outside aide couldnt come sooner. I read a local news website after the show that says he's on vacation in Europe right now, which seems all too fitting. Whatever the case may be, he wasnt at Vivian Girls' show, and out of fear of using up what precious few gasoline drops we have left, not many other people were there either.
Of Montreal has abandoned the days of geometrically safe album packaging in The Skeletal Lamping Collection, a mind-bending line of totes, lamps, apparel, decals and CDs stemming from the philosophy that all art objects should be unique, functional, and aesthetically pleasing. Designed by collective artists, Gemini Tactics and The Bee With Wheels, Skeletal Lamping products are what the Garden of Eden would look like on an acid trip; legless horses dashing through rich floral blobs, rigid bursts of light, and pale caricatures anonymously floating among the chaos. The band hopes to inspire new trends in the music industry, breaking away from standard packaging techniques, steering the infusion modern art and music in unexpected directions.
Read more about it at Pitchfork.
Photo courtesy Of Montreal
The art world recognizes Chris Verene as a photographer, but Atlanta knows him as one of the city's founding fathers of indie rock. He pounded away as the original drummer for Dairy Queen Empire (now DQE), and played in various musical acts throughout the '80s and '90s, including the Rock*A*Teens and the Opal Foxx Quartet.
These days, the Brooklyn-based transplant can be heard providing the beat for the Brooklyn-bases Spanish indie rock band, Cordero -- so named after his wife, songwriter and the band's founding member, Ani Cordero.
The group has a long history of cycling through collaborations with members of groups such as Calexico and Giant Sand (Howie Gelb), while various other musicians have moved in and out of the fold. Their latest album, De Donde Eres, hit the streets via on Bloodshot Records last month, and the group will be performing at The Earl on Thurs., Oct. 9. Batata Doce and The Holland Dutch open the show.
[kml_flashembed movie="http://www.youtube.com/v/TkXNiYdrdEU" width="425" height="350" wmode="transparent" /]
Click to watch the video for Ruleta Rusa from De Donde Eres.
On Wed., Oct. 1 Lukas Ligeti returns to Atlanta to play Eyedrum in support of his latest CD, Afrikan Machinery (Tzadik). Lukas is the son of renowned 20th Century avant-garde composer György Ligeti. Much like his father, the younger, Brooklyn-based Ligeti thrives on the fringes of experimental musical ideas and practices, but his compositions focus on percussive experimentation and crafting rhythms and drones that land in the realm of post-minimalism. Electronica, jazz and indie rock in some form or another have fallen into his repertoire from time to time as well, but his work has very little to do with Western pop music by any means.
Afrikan Machinery is a swirling collection of polyrhythms and ethnic sounds that are mashed, chopped and screwed into varying tempos and sensory slurring constructs that on the surface defy a sense of order. But there is an underlying structure that weaves in and out of each number.
An array of plinks and plunks bounce off of each other as lines of minimal rhythms that are pieced together by a barrage of sounds intertwine to form something that is much greater than the sum of its parts.
It's a hypnotic balance of chaos and design, improvisation and focused ideas that are as blissful as they are world-weary and anxiety inducing; and capture Ligeti at his finest musical moments. This show marks Ligeti's first stop in Atlanta since playing Eyedrum with Raoul Björkenheim back in June of 2004. I had a chance to catch up with Lukas shortly before he left for the current tour.
Chad Radford: What you will be playing at your show in Atlanta, and will this be a solo performance?
Lukas Ligeti: I'll be playing solo on an instrument called marimba lumina. It's a kind of electronic marimba, a very sophisticated midi controller, built by Don Buchla from California, and you can get information on it at www.buchla.com. The sounds I play come mostly from my laptop - samples for the most part, recorded during my travels, often in Africa. The music is part composed / part improvised, and made to be played live on electronic percussion.
Local percussionist / composer Klimchak opens the show with an aural collage of clashing electronic and acoustic beats and textures. $8. 9 p.m. Eyedrum. 404-522-0655.www.eyedrum.org
(Photo by Chris Woltmann)
Brooklyn trio Vivian Girls craft a ghostly, melancholy pop sound that feels at home amid the current crop of younger acts taking cues from the noisier no wave of 1970s New York. Rather than sulking in the scrape and fuzz of peer acts, like Blank Dogs and No Age, Cassie Ramone (guitar/vocals), Kickball Katy (bass/vocals) and Ali Koehler (drums and vocals) work up a concoction of shoegazer punk and twee sounds bound by primitivism.
The ethereal fidelity of their self-titled debut, recently reissued by In the Red, wraps Phil Spector's wall of sound around angelic girl-group coos that sound both familiar and far away. Songs such as "All the Time," "Where Do You Run To" and "Never See Me Again" resonate with simple and addictive melodies that are both innocent and easy on the ears.
Alternating threads of gloom and elation come together throughout their songs and culminate in a wash of fleeting emotions that guide each number through a loosely conceptual album. "The songs were arranged in such a way that the first half of the album is about falling in love and the second half is about falling out of it," frontwoman Ramone explains.
When speaking about her musical influences, she's not concerned with dropping the names of artsy punk bands. Instead, she pines over Burt Bacharach of all people. "He is so brilliant it makes me wanna scream."
She's not kidding either. As she delves into what draws her to Bacharach's songwriting, the unlikely influence becomes clear; as though she's describing her own band's sound to a fine point. "I like his songs because they are both really catchy and somewhat depressing and they evoke an instant sense of nostalgia, even if you've never heard the song before. He also does interesting things with phrasing and chord progressions," she says. "That is what I aim for whenever I write a song."
Vivian Girls with Rizzudo and Tyvek. $8. Sun., Sept. 28. 8 p.m. The Earl, 488 Flat Shoals Road. 404-522-3950. www.badearl.com.
Click below to read a short Q&A with Cassie Ramone and Kickball Katie.
While print reporters of every stripe continue to get squeezed out of newspapers suffering from reduced ad sales and readership losses, classical music critics have been particularly hard hit as papers attempt to target younger readers.
But rarely, if ever, have we heard of a classical music critic being reassigned because he was, uh, too critical.
Apparently, that's what happened to Donald Rosenberg, according to a recent article in The New York Times. Cleveland Orchestra supporters have chastised Rosenberg the classical music critic for The Plain Dealer of Cleveland for his harsh criticism of the orchestra's maestro, Franz Welser-Möst. And after covering the orchestra for 28 years (16 at The Plain Dealer), he's been "removed from the symphony beat."
By Mr. Rosenbergs account he met with Ms. Goldberg, who has been editor of the paper for a little over a year, on Sept. 17. She called me in and said they were making a change, and I would no longer be covering the Cleveland Orchestra, Mr. Rosenberg recounted.
She told him that the situation had become untenable for the newspaper, Mr. Rosenberg said. She said my reviews were unfair, and I was attacking the orchestra. Ms. Goldberg also said that she wanted broader coverage of the orchestra, he added. I dont know what that means. In the 16 years Ive been here Ive written every kind of story imaginable.
To read the full story, click here.
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