02 Aug, 2013

Lollapalooza 2013 Preview

Lollapalooza kicks off today in Chicago’s Grant Park and, like all of the festivals on the circuit this year, the lineup is very promising. Here a few of the bigger-name bands that we wish we were seeing this weekend with their official bios and my personal commentary:

New Order: 

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NEW ORDER formed in 1980 out of the ashes of the now legendary Manchester band Joy Division. After the tragic death of singer Ian Curtis, the remaining members chose to continue as NEW ORDER, with guitarist Bernard Sumner taking over as vocalist, Stephen Morris on drums, Peter Hook on bass and the new addition of Gillian Gilbert on keyboards and guitar.

And, Peter Hook is coming for a solo show in September!

Grizzly Bear: 

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Shields, the fourth and most fluid album by Grizzly Bear to date, slyly defies that trend. True, the quartet of Chris Bear, Ed Droste, Daniel Rossen and Chris Taylor have never made a quick follow-up; it took them three years to get from Horn of Plenty to Yellow House, three more to get from Yellow House to Veckatimest. Between those records, though, they’d not only toured but issued singles and splits, EPs and remixes. After long spans of shows for Veckatimest, however, Grizzly Bear went silent, or, to be more exact, its members lived their own lives. Trips were taken, and friendships were restored; families were visited, and solo projects were finished. The potential energy gathered in tour vans and busses, in studios and on stages for years was finally released, giving the individual band’s pieces the chance to recover and, after a year, return to being Grizzly Bear.

Lucky for us, Grizzly Bear will be here next Tuesday (August 6). 

Hot Chip: 

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There are five words slipped into the middle of ‘Night and Day’ – the hyper-infectious, propulsive track that comes halfway through Hot Chip’s fifth album – that in many ways sum up what’s In Our Heads. Somewhere between the fizzing percussion and the relentless and addictive bassline, a processed voice intones the line, “I like Zapp not Zappa”.

We have really been enjoying Hot Chip’s sideproject with Alexis Taylor and members of Spiritualized and The Heat. But what about new music from Hot Chip? 

Death Grips 

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“Like a searing art-rap road-rash, Death Grips masterfully combine bellowing slow-flow rhymes, screechy samples, and lunatic genius going buck fuckin’ wild.”- SPIN
Experimental rap-noise duo Death Grips, consisting of Stefan “MC Ride” Burnett and Zach Hill formed during late 2010 in Sacramento, California. The band soon dropped the highly acclaimed mix tape Exmilitary featuring the standout track “Guillotine”, Time Out NY’s #1 single of 2011. From inception, the band has received unparalleled critical praise from tastemakers such as Pitchfork, NME, Spin, Rolling Stone, The New Yorker, and more, while being featured on countless “best of” lists.
And they just started their own record label. Taking rebellion to the next level. 
Smith Westerns: 
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In the four itinerant years since their self-titled debut, Smith Westerns have grown unphased by the rigors of touring. The melodic indie-rock group—whose latest album, Soft Will, drops June 25—has tested its mettle (and passed) with pivotal opening slots for MGMT and Wilco, not to mention high-profile stints in front of the itchy, overbaked masses at Coachella and Lollapalooza. Yet, come February 2012, after finishing up a whopping 140 dates to promote their second album (the critically hailed Dye It Blonde), Smith Westerns were apprehensive about returning home to headline a gig in their native Chicago.
CD of the Month veterans and we are presenting their show next Tuesday. Radio 1190 loves Smith Westerns. 
Disclosure: 
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Disclosure are a British electronic band. The duo consists of brothers Guy and Howard Lawrence. The siblings grew up in Reigate, Surrey. They supported SBTRKT and Hot Chip on their recent 2012 tours.
I know, I know. Enough about Disclosure. But, I just LOVE their music. Can’t wait for them to come through Boulder on October 22.
Charles Bradley: 
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If you’re looking for a story that best summarizes the last year in the life of Charles Bradley, you’d be hard pressed to find a better one than the night he and his band showed up in Utopia, Texas to play an outdoor show in the middle of a thunderstorm. “It was just raining, raining, raining,” Bradley recalls. “I walked out onstage, and there were about 800 people there – maybe more – all of them just standing out there in the rain and the mud.” The band settled in and fought their hardest against the elements, but – for a moment, anyway – it seemed that nature was too much for even the mighty Charles Bradley. About halfway through the show, the power went out, leaving both the band and the drenched fans in total darkness.

Baroness: 

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BARONESS formed in 2003 in Savannah, GA, comprised of a group of friends who grew up together in Lexington, VA, a small town in the Blue Ridge Mountains. Shortly after their formation, the band released two EPs and a split EP with Unpersons entitled respectively, First, Second and A Grey Sigh in a Flower Husk. From their origin right through the release of these EPs, BARONESS toured non-stop throughout America and Europe, building up a steady underground fan base.

Mattle would be so proud. Catch Baroness later this month when they perform at the Bluebird. 

Wild Nothing: 

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Nocturne is the follow up release to Wild Nothing’s critically acclaimed debut ‘Gemini’.

Ask Jack Tatum what ‘Wild Nothing’ means and he’ll answer: ‘a contradiction’. In 2010, 21 year old Tatum released one of the finest cult pop records of the summer whilst ensconced in his senior year of college in Blacksburg, VA, a small mid-atlantic town better known for producing football fans and engineers than musicians. Tatum lives in contradictions. You’ll often hear Wild Nothingreferred to as a ‘one man pop band’. Jack creates in the studio, alone. On the road, he’s with a band. There are two Wild Nothings.

Catch Wild Nothing later this year at The Larimer Lounge. You can win tickets, too!
Wavves: 
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Straight from the dungeons of L.A., Wavves are releasing Afraid Of Heights, their fourth album and first on the Mom And Pop label. Now a duo consisting of guitarist Nathan Williams and bassist Stephen Pope, they sound bigger, brasher, and shockingly professional than ever on Afraid Of Heights that positions the band to take their rightful place amongst the pop-punk gods.You know the story by now. Bored dude in his parents’ tool shed-turned-room with no insulation and a record stuck to a hole in the wall to keep the mice out turns on a four- track recorder, fucks around and ends up with two of the oddest, noisiest and downright catchy albums of recent memory. Those two records (the eponymous Wavves the eponyymous Wavvves) were winningly, messily chaotic—grand on a small scale, but not necessarily world-beaters. Which is why when Williams, then solo, linked up with erstwhile Jay Reatard sidemen Stephen Pope (bass) and Billy Hayes (drums) and busted the door down with the stunner that was King Of The Beach, a pop-punk blackout for the DeLonge and Deleuze crowd. After the smoke of King Of The Beach had cleared, Williams and Pope released the Life Sux EP, a testament to the crushing powers of rock n’ roll and also ennui. The product of more than a year of writing and recording, Afraid Of Heights expands the Wavves sound while remaining true to the band’s original vision—it was created with absolutely no label involvement, a specter that nearly derailed King Of The Beach. Working with producer John Hill (known for his work with M.I.A. and Santigold, as well as with hip-hop acts such as Nas and the Wu-Tang Clan), the band found a willing party in creating what they felt was the truest expression of what they wanted. As for the Afraid Of Heights sessions themselves, Williams paid for them out-of-pocket, explaining his reasoning with, “In doing so, I had no one to answer to. We recorded the songs how and when we wanted without anybody interfering, and that’s how it’s supposed to be.”

Everyone’s favorite stoners are coming back to Colorado. Listen later this month to win tickets to their show!

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