The sold out show filled First Avenue with hundreds of fans eager to celebrate 89.3 The Current’s 12th birthday on Friday evening.
The music scene today is impossibly vast.
The sum total of radio stations, even more open-minded ones like The Current and Radio K, cannot absorb the sheer magnitude of cult favorites, local secrets, and promising upstarts that flood the orgy of blank stimulation known as the Internet.
As such, a band like The Mountain Goats can excel both critically and commercially enough to headline a show at First Avenue last Sunday (April 19), while many will have no idea who they are.
Cleveland-based duo mr. Gnome are a perfect example of the paradox of modern music. Listening to their albums before their show at the Nomad World Pub Sunday, my mind conjured images of sprawling stage shows and cult-sized bands like Arcade Fire, Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeroes, and the Twin Cities’ Cloud Cult. What I found was real-life married couple Nicole Barille and Sam Meister, hanging out in the bar before the show, talking to patrons, and helping their crew set up their own merch table. They even took a few moments before the show to chat.
The War on Drugs played two sold out shows at First Avenue, and I had the pleasure of attending the first night. Not typically the type of music that I gravitate towards, but the Philadelphia band’s third album, Lost in the Dream, from this year was difficult to not get behind. If you enjoy great guitar music, the live show would not disappoint you.
There are light shows, and then there is Teeth. Teeth is the face (really just teeth) of DJ Jonathan Gooch, otherwise known as Feed Me. Feed Me with Teeth is a show to be watched just as much as it is to hear. The music is bass heavy, dubstep, and electro, but all round dance-able.
The amount of energy and pure fun Sylvan Esso packed into their short one hour set at First Avenue was impressive. It was as if they knew we only had a brief amount of time to spend together and they wanted to make the most of it. The two North Carolinians, singer Amelia Meath and producer/ Nick Sanborn, not only had no issues commanding the stage, but were also incredibly gracious. After each song, you could tell how overwhelmed they were with the roar of applause from the audience, even noting “There aren’t any other places like this.”
HBO Developing Series Called “Stillwater” — Other Minnesota Places That Should Get TV or Movie Treatment
It was recently announced that HBO is developing a new TV series set in Stillwater, according to Deadline. It will be directed by Howie Deutch who will serve as executive producer along with Colin Farrell and Mark Steven Johnson who will take on writing duties. The one-hour drama will center around a New York City cop whose life “spirals out of control when he relocates his family to a small town in Minnesota.”
We Minnesotans love to embellish our notoriety by reminding out-of-towners of our beloved celebrities. We’ll say, “We gave you Prince, and Bob Dylan,” and to the right crowd, we might even add, “… and Nick Swardson.”
I have a confession. For the longest time I assumed Tune-Yards was fronted by a guy. It wasn’t until I finally heard them being discussed that I realized the lead singer was referred to as a “her”. That’s not to say her, who is Merrill Garbus, voice is bad, far from it actually. Seeing her perform live not only provided an opportunity to hear her unique and distinctive voice in person, but also showed how amazing it was and the incredible range it’s capable of.