Post-rock quartet Explosions in the Sky released their seventh studio album, “The Wilderness” early this April. As a fan and avid listener of their early material, I was skeptical that the group could deliver as engaging and original music as “Those Who Tell the Truth Shall Die, Those Who Tell the Truth Shall Live Forever” or ”The Earth Is Not a Cold Dead Place.” Their soundtrack material in the interim, such as “Friday Night Lights,” and also tracks off of “All of a Sudden I Miss Everyone,” begin to sound cookie-cutter in their almost melodrama, due only by the group’s early masterful sound.
Lake Street has deservedly skyrocketed in worldwide fame ever since their live, stripped-down cover of the Jackson Five’s “I Want You Back” filmed on a Boston street corner went viral. Mixing old-school pop with jazz, blues, and soul influences, the group caters to the indie pop-rock loving fan who loves a taste of nostalgia in their ears.
After selling out Marathon Music Works in October, contemporary 1950s-soul artist Leon Bridges was back in Nashville last night at a sold-out Ryman Auditorium. The crowd surprisingly consisted of all ages compared to the Marathon Music Works show, which was a glaring majority of young couples. The ability to sit down in pews likely contributed to the older crowd’s attendance, and there was also the benefit of not having to watch hundreds of couples slow-dance and make out to Leon’s jams. In general, as my friend astutely commented, “There are a lot of good hats tonight.” Leon’s vintage style permeated the crowd, transporting us to the 1950s.
Snarky Puppy earned their second Grammy on Sunday for their ninth album “Sylva,” an instrumental masterpiece of composition. Michael League, bassist, bandleader, and the group’s main composer has been aiding in the redefinition of big band jazz-fusion on a mainstream level for over 10 years. An art form that has been slowly escaping the public’s ears, Snarky Puppy is successfully bringing big band music back into the spotlight.
When a friend told me about Discover Weekly on Spotify, I thought it was one of the better ideas of online music services. A playlist tailored to your music preferences, including songs from artists you probably don’t know? Every week? All the work of finding new music now done by a computer for you. How unbelievably convenient!
We can all get bogged down studying for finals or writing final papers, so I wanted to share some songs that get me focused while writing or studying. Good study music is a point of strong opinions for many people, but I am always open to suggestions. Music that gets old quickly can serve as another distraction while studying or writing papers, and students know that another distraction is the last thing we need. Hopefully my playlists will get you in the zone.
I had the opportunity to watch my favorite band, Chicago-based Maps & Atlases, for the fourth time on Saturday, October 24th at the Basement East in East Nashville. For the first time, however, I had the honor of interviewing the band after they opened for Bobby Bare Jr.
Maps & Atlases played for almost an hour, revisiting old songs from their second EP “You And Me And the Mountain” to their most recent LP, “Beware And Be Grateful.” Only months after former band member Erin Elders left to pursue other opportunities, this was one of the few shows the former quartet has played as a trio.
Lake Street Dive graced Nashville with their presence yet again this past Saturday at the beautiful Ascend Amphitheater. Unfortunately for the Lake Street Dive fan, however, they were only opening for Grace Potter. Luckily the group drove a large and enthusiastic crowd that showed up early. Despite their position in the set, Lake Street Dive owned the stage and played a fantastic hour of music.
Every semester on the WRVU DJ application we are asked, “What’s your favorite album that no one knows about?” For the last four semesters I have declared that The Samuel Jackson Five’s Easily Misunderstood is, in fact, that album. I realize that there are probably some of you who have heard it, but I hope after reading this that some of you will scroll down to the embedded Spotify link and experience the post-rock mastery.