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Music

Beck

by Josh Potter June 26, 2014

You might have assumed Solid Sound was in effect judging by the number of folks who packed into MASS MoCA’s largest performance space, Joe’s Field, for Beck’s Tuesday night show. And with the annual Wilco ...

1 comment

Steve Martin and the Steep Canyon Rangers featuring Edie Brickell

by Alexander M. Stern June 26, 2014

The banjo was developed by African slaves who fashioned gourd-bodied instruments similar to ones used in Africa. One of the most likely direct ancestors of the modern banjo is the akonting, found in Senegal, Gambia, ...

1 comment

Fishbone

by Tim Mack June 26, 2014

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How do you give so much to so few for so little? On some level, the members of Fishbone must have made peace with the course their career has taken. How else could they keep ...

1 comment

Careers and Great Mutations

by Josh Potter June 19, 2014

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Guitarists get all the glory, but it’s the rhythm section that makes the band. While a melody or lyric often remains as the salient part of the song in a listener’s memory, it’s the way ...

The Lucky Jukebox Brigade

by Josh Potter June 19, 2014

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The Lucky Jukebox Brigade are a rock band, but the project might as well be a burlesque show or a Broadway musical, a Victorian novel or a coloring book. The seven-piece group will release their ...

Ton Lokal

by Timothy Reidy June 12, 2014

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  It was the last weekend of April. It was exhausting and thrilling. Some fine art was on show in Troy that Friday, punctuated by photos at the Fulton Street Gallery and Spiritual Cylinders at the ...

Voice of the Pride

by Josh Potter June 12, 2014

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  The cover of Sean Desiree’s debut EP depicts a lion wearing a collar of tiny bells. Designed by her partner Alisa Sikelianos-Carter, it’s a visualization of Desiree’s stage name, Bell’s Roar, itself a kind of ...

James McMurtry, Bottle Rockets

by John Rodat June 12, 2014

  Looking back on the music of the early ’90s, it’s easy to forget that there were popular forms other than grunge. The spectacular success and traumatic demise of Nirvana loom large in musical memory. But ...

1 comment

David Lindley

by David Greenberger June 12, 2014

  Last Friday’s performance by David Lindley at the Van Dyck was rich with the ephemeral architecture of music. One man, one stringed instrument, and every song he played created a palpable structure that dissipated in ...

1 comment

Modest Mouse

by Metroland Staff June 5, 2014

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  A little rain hardly deterred Seattle indie-rock titans Modest Mouse from turning out two solid (and sold-out) performances at Brewery Ommegang last week (May 23-24). Isaac Brock and company had been out of the spotlight ...

Ray LaMontagne

by Alexander M. Stern June 5, 2014

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  Did somebody put something in the water? Psychedelia seems to be the go-to for bearded alt-rockers this season. Ray LaMontagne, whose previous effort was 2010’s pastoral God Willin’ and the Creek Don’t Rise, joins the Black ...

John Davey

by Jeff Nania June 5, 2014

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  Bassist and composer John Davey's newest album Open Range is a worthwhile listen. He is joined by guitarist Ken McBain and drummer Dean Sharp for 12 songs in the guitar-trio idiom.  Davey's upright bass always ...

Matthew Sweet and Susanna Hoffs

by Alexander M. Stern June 5, 2014

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  Early-’90s wunderkind Matthew Sweet and late-’80s siren Susanna Hoffs have released their third all-covers album, Under the Covers, Vol. 3. The two previous volumes featured faithfully rendered performances of songs from the ’60s and ’70s, ...

The Black Keys

by David King June 5, 2014

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  The Black Keys’ ambition outweighs their abilities. Turn Blue features the band doing what they are simply unequipped to do: play full-on rock songs. Anyone who has seen the Keys live knows the band can ...

3 comments

Mysteryland

by The Staff May 30, 2014

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Despite intermittent rain showers, the Bethel Woods Center for the Arts was transformed into an interactive wonderland of dance music for this year’s Mysterland this weekend. Between a stage fashioned into a pirate ship and ...

Bethel Woods Center for the Arts

Lou Donaldson

by Alexander M. Stern May 30, 2014

  Lou Donaldson brought the funk to Schenectady on a Friday night. His extraordinary quartet features Akiko Tsuruga on the Hammond B-3 organ, Randy Johnston on guitar, and Fukushi Tainaka on drums. Each musician is a star ...

1 comment A Place for Jazz

Al Kooper 70th Birthday Concert

by Alexander M. Stern May 30, 2014

  Toward the end of the first half of Al Kooper’s 70th Birthday Concert, Kooper introduces the next number as the one song everybody expects him to play. “I’ve played it so many times,” he says, “I ...

2 comments The Egg

Doctor Magnum

by Josh Potter May 30, 2014

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  The fact that the idea of an all-instrumental band covering contemporary hip-hop still feels edgy speaks both to how conservative the jazz establishment has become and how vital the jazz formula still remains, able to ...

Formula 5

by Josh Potter May 30, 2014

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  Central to the ethos of a jam band is that pure improvisation can bore a hole in the fabric of space-time, transporting musician and listener alike into uncharted realms of collective experience, at turns ecstatic, ...

It’s Punk to Wear Sunscreen

by Alexander M. Stern May 22, 2014

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  “This band is really good,” says Ben Garrett. “They play surf rock.” The guitarist and vocalist for Saratoga band Party Boat sits with his bandmates on a curved sofa that’s seen better days inside their rehearsal ...

Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band

by Paul Rapp May 15, 2014

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  1. Well, that was interesting. 2. Thank god for Tom Morello. It wasn’t a cookie-cutter show, that’s for sure. The Boss and band began the final week of their five-month “High Hopes” tour with a wild, ...

4 comments

Against Me!

by Elyse Beaudoin May 15, 2014

  It’s curious to note when punk rock stopped smelling like body odor and started smelling like Herbal Essence and dryer sheets. However, the moms waiting outisde Upstate Concert Hall to drive their kids home were ...

Rhett Tyler and Early Warning

by Alexander M. Stern May 15, 2014

  At 8 o’clock on the dot, veteran blues guitarist Rhett Tyler hit the stage at Schenectady’s Van Dyck Lounge for a Saturday night show that rocked the Stockade. With his band Early Warning, consisting of Bo ...

Miles Davis

by Alexander M. Stern May 15, 2014

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  Few recording artists have had the sweeping, long-term effect of Miles Davis, and even fewer have been as divisive. While Davis continues, more than two decades after his death, to enjoy acclaim and strong sales, ...

Wussy

by Ross Marvin May 15, 2014

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  At the end of March, Cincinnati rockers Wussy played for about 40 people at the Low Beat. Bassist Mark Messerly actually took a picture of the crowd from the NO PEPPER stage as though the ...