Artist of the week
My first encounter with their electrifying sound was nothing short of mind-blowing. From the moment their fingers hit a turntable, they brought the crowd to their feet, but they won’t settle for the title “local artist.” These young men work for global domination. They are 3 Kingz.
Ancestral Warship, the band that earned third place in the Best of Kent competition last week, began a new journey last February when a group of six musicians took their passion for music to the next level. Since then, they say, there hasn’t been a slow moment.
Rising country artist Zach Lockwood made a stop at the Dusty Armadillo in Rootstown to open up for the Country Gone Wild Tour with Parmalee and the Bush Hawgs. You can check out his Country At Heart - EP featuring songs: “Summertime Lovin,’” “Her State of Mind,” “Country At Heart” and more on iTunes. Reporter Jen Bellissimo chatted with Zach before his performance and here’s a look at how he began his career!
Jim James, frontman of the popular psych-rock outfit My Morning Jacket, has always been rather spiritual. But on his debut solo album, Regions of Light and Sound of God, he takes the spirituality to a whole new level.
A$AP Rocky performs at the Hollywood Palladium, October 26, 2012. Photo by Robert Gauthier.
LongLiveA$AP begins with brooding storm clouds, and ends with Florence Welch chanting you off into the night. Here’s what you get in between: 16 tracks, 17 guest features, over 20 producers, all working for 1 center piece; Rakim Mayers.
It’s been a long time coming for Demos Papadimas. The Northeast Ohio based singer-songwriter has been busy traveling the United States as well as Europe, bringing together an eclectic blend of Mediterranean, European and American music to create his own roots-folk sound. This has led to the recording of a new studio album, titled “Wandering Through The Wilderness”, which will be released with a concert on February 8 at Cleveland’s Beachland Ballroom. En route to the album’s release, Papadimas will be making a stop in Kent for a show at the Stone Tavern with local act the Hive Robbers.
Papadimas spent a few years in Europe, including countries such as France, Spain, and Greece, and cites these travels as a major influence on his music. He said he wrote many of his songs while traveling, and many of his lyrics include references to travel. He spent time playing with what he says was a “hippie commune” in France, where Cajun music was played in abundance. This is another influence that caries into the music he makes today. Yet another major influence is Rembetiko. Papadimas, of Greek heritage, grew up with this “hard livin’” style of music, which is the Greek equivalent of the American blues. His exploration of this varied musical territory is evident in his work.
Papadimas cut his teeth playing in parks and clubs in New York City and eventually embarked on a successful solo acoustic tour across the East Coast. His tireless work ethic has not gone unnoticed, as he was recently ranked number two on Cleveland Scene magazines’s list of “13 Bands to Watch in 2013”. Papadimas has put his own stamp on Americana, creating a sound that is unique to him and cannot be labeled. His music belongs to no specific genre, but rather takes elements of everything from folk to bluegrass to world music and combines them to formulate a genre all his own.
Papadimas, along with his band (members included below), will bring this sound to Kent on Saturday, January 26 with a 9 p.m. performance at the Stone Tavern along with local favorites the Hive Robbers. The stop is one in a series of performances leading up to the “Wandering Through the Wilderness” release show on February 8 in Cleveland. With Demos already drawing comparisons to the likes of Bob Dylan and Justin Townes Earl, the album is sure to garner him even more buzz than he already has gained. It may only be a matter of time before the name Demos Papadimas becomes well-known to the public.
Demos Papadimas-Vocals, Resonator Guitar, Harmonica, Bouzouki
Andre Ptichkin- Upright Bass
Sandi Quotson- Violin
Ralph Rich- Drums
I’ve never been a fan of Beyonce. I find her generic, repetitive and unoriginal. And, to be honest, I’m probably the only male in the world that finds her unattractive. However, her twenty-six year old sister Solange Knowles is a different story. The mainstream got their first taste of her in 2008, when she released her sophomore album entitled Sol-Angel and the Hadley St. Dreams. The record featured a unique blend of psychedelic R&B with a heavy emphasis on electronic elements. True, her third overall disc, is a bit of a departure from that sound.
What a career Abel Tesfaye has had thus far. At age twenty-two, he’s released three superb mixtapes, appeared on tracks with the likes of OVOXO side-kick Drake and Wiz Khalifa, been dubbed the “best musical talent since Michael Jackson” by MTV’s John Norris, and invented and pioneered a genre of haunting and disturbingly drugged out R&B.
When I was looking through the list of albums set for release this month, I couldn’t help but notice that the eighty-third installment of the Now That’s What I Call Music! series was released a few days ago.
Neil Young is one of the rare musicians who’s been a household name longer than myself and most of you reading this have been alive. SInce 1966, Young has been constantly putting out great work. His 1970 album After the Gold Rush and it’s ’72 follow up Harvest are two of the greatest rock albums of all time, and Crosby, Stills, Nash, and Young are widely regarded as one of the most influential protest groups ever.
Anberlin is back. They’ve really never left, steadily releasing new material just about every two years. When I say they’re back, I mean the Anberlin that every alternative-rock fan knows, loves, and respects as giants of the genre is back. Their sixth studio album, Vital, is a welcome return to form for a band that has found themselves in a few tough spots within the past few years.
No matter how you look at it, Lupe Fiasco has always been one of hip-hop’s most interesting figures. Whether he’s calling the President a terrorist, performing in an Occupy Wall Street shirt holding a Palestinian flag, or being threatened by fellow Chicago native Chief Keef, it seems he always finds himself the subject of conversation.
If are not familiar with the names Macklemore & Ryan Lewis I urge you to become acquainted as soon as possible. The duo of rapper and producer is one of the most talented combos in the business currently. Macklemore had multiple releases before teaming up with Ryan Lewis, but for the sake of this article I will only be referring to his songs with Ryan Lewis. About two years ago I came across a video by a Seattle based rapper titled “Otherside.”
PA indie-rockers bring arena-ready sound to the tiny Kent Stage
Photo by Rachel Kilroy
Brooklyn’s produced many a great indie band in it’s time, especially within the past few years. Perhaps the most beloved of all of them though would be the psychedelic folk-pop outfit known as Grizzly Bear.
About The Artist: When I first received an email from a KSUBuzz reader urging me to check out Humble Home I was excited for two reasons. First off, holy crap someone read my article! Secondly, the band they described sounded like an exciting and unique band.
Download These Now:Tin Angel, Tempest, Soon After Midnight
A couple of weeks ago, I headed back to my hometown of Youngstown, OH. I didn’t go to visit family or do my laundry, but to attend a concert put on by the man I consider to be the most influential artist in the history of music. That man is Bob Dylan, and that concert was one of the most surreal experiences of my life.
Have you ever wondered what would happen if Jack Johnson had a love child with 311 and it grew up to be best friends with Cage the Elephant and Hollywood Undead, and then they all grew up on the beaches of California jamming to Bob Marley and Sublime? As ridiculous as that sounds, that’s what comes to mind when I listen to The Dirty Heads.
With his gray-pale skin, scraggly black hair and affinity for wearing old Western suits, by all appearances Jack White could be mistaken for an amalgamation of Tim Burton characters rather than a highly revered rock star.
“Plans Within Plans” by MXPX
Released: April 3 by Rock City Records
Stars out of five: Two
Why: I applaud MXPX for getting back to the sound that made them (kind of) famous in the first place, but too little too late, guys. I can’t even begin to explain how dated this album feels.
“Pink Friday: Roman Reloaded” by Nicki Minaj
Released: April 3 by Cash Money Records
Stars out of Five: Four
Why: Nicki Minaj, in herself, is a giant brain fuck. Is she trying too hard to be over-the-top, or is she actually just insane and awesome?
After walking around the "historic” downtown Kent this weekend, I could not stop hearing the lyrics of the song "Call Me Maybe." I had never heard of the song before, which upset me because I pride myself on knowing what’s hip these days.
Moody and broody songstresses, a la Adele and Lana Del Rey, are a hot commodity in commercial music these days. On their own, they glamourize some dark part of the 1960s that has escaped our memories (or rather, or parents' memories) with their woeful lyrics about lost love and the sadness that emanates through their bouffant hairstyles and winged eyeliner.
“MDNA” by Madonna
Released: March 26 by Live Nation Worldwide & Interscope Records
Stars out of five: Three
Why: Madonna is known for her singles, videos, live performances and all-around envelope-pushing awesomeness that’s made her an icon. All of this combined is why she’s ranked one of the best-selling female artists ever, not because every album itself is utterly amazing.
“The OF Tape Vol.2” by Odd Future Wolf Gang Kill Them All
Released: March 20, 2012
Stars out of five: Four
Who is OFWGKTA? Leading this in-your-face hip-hop collective is Tyler, The Creator, who gained huge recognition for his solo work in 2011 when he won a Video Music Award for Best New Artist and was named the No.2 “Hottest Minor in Music” by Billboard.
Released: March 5 by Mom+Pop records
Stars out of Five: Four
Sounds like: sophisticated yet youthful folky, jazzy acoustic guitar with violin, xylophone, some feel-good whistling and smooth, emotional vocals.
"WZRD" by WZRD (Kid Cudi and Dot Da Genius)
Released: Feb. 28 by Universal Republic Records
Stars out of Five: Two and a quarter
“Reign of Terror”
by Sleigh Bells
Released: Feb. 21 by Mom+Pop
Stars out of five: Four
Sounds like: Two very different sounds coming together in a loud, intense, ultimately impressive way.
Photo courtesy of MCT Campus
For as long as I can remember, Wilco has been there through thick and thin. This alternative rock, folk and electric-sounding band creates an ensemble of amazing new sounds, while at the same time, providing the listeners with lyrics that just stick to mind.
Released: Feb. 14 by Fat Possum Records
Stars out of five: Three. It’s a cute little record, but you’ll be lucky if you get through the first two songs before your mind wanders off completely. You’ll zone back in for the chorus a few tracks later and then off again to la-la land.
Released: Jan. 24 by Carpark Records
Stars out of five: Four and a half
Listens before you get into it: Only one. Once you start this album, you’re hooked for all eight tracks, then you’ll start it over.
Sounds like: a serious musical treat.
“Sadness isn’t the coolest emotion that bands want to talk about” Sharon Van Etten A painfully shy singer-songwriter left the comforting swell of Middle Tennessee to the cultural whirlwind of New York City.
Released: Jan. 31 by Interscope Records
Stars out of five: 3.75, but 4 when it’s blaring crisply through your headphones or a pair of speakers. Some albums are just better loud. Wait to give this its first listen until you can put it on full blast.
Released: Jan. 24 by Curb Records
Stars out of five: Two and three-quarters, despite the sticker on the front of the album that declares “My Best Album Ever -Tim McGraw.”
The world may not end in 2012, but signs from the music industry prove otherwise. Tim McGraw is releasing his first album in three years, an eternity for an artist with such a fanatical following. With fans just as rabid, The Shins will be reentering the scene with their first album in five years. Pay close attention to these albums as three out of “Rolling Stone’s” Top Ten Albums from 2011 were released in January or February.
Tim McGraw “Emotional Traffic” January 17
Curb Records, McGraw’s label since his debut, has held “Emotional Traffic” hostage since 2010. Lawsuit and countersuit later, this album is finally slated for a January release. This will be McGraw’s final album with Curb Records. Check out the album streaming in its entirety at NPR.
Lamb of God “Resolution” January 24
Riding cries of “Metal is back!” from fans, Lamb of God returns with their seventh studio album, the first since 2009. Channelling earlier work such as 2003’s “As the Palaces Burn” and 2004’s “Ashes of the Wake”, Lamb of God promises memorable guitar riffs and solos that will melt your face. Give the first single from “Resolution” a listen here:
Ingrid Michaelson “Human Again” January 24
Having described this album as “fiercer and less peppy as my ukulele songs”, Michaelson’s newest album promises to change her sound. This may turn away fans of Michaelson, but let the music determine where you stand. Check out “Ghost”, the first single from the New York native. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S208WvTgSTo&ob=av2n
Lana Del Rey “Born to Die” January 30
Lana Del Rey has accomplished more than most artists before their first album. Simultaneously dividing the blogosphere into raging haters and unabashed lovers, Lana Del Rey challenges what the title “artist” means. After failing in music under the moniker “Lizzy Grant”, Lana Del Rey returns for round two (Lady Gaga anyone?). Manufactured artist designed to sell records or true talent, Lana Del Rey’s album will be debated for months to come. Lana Del Rey’s website offers two tracks from this album. For added fun: Google her name and click around. The amount of content out there surrounding her will have you laughing, crying and asking “WTF?”.
Paul McCartney “Kisses on the Bottom” February 7
I’ll let you finish laughing first. Yes, this album title is ridiculous. Yes, McCartney has described it as “very tender, very intimate” adding to the hilarity. This aside, this is still an album from one of the surviving Beatles and McCartney’s fifteenth album, an accomplishment. The first album since 2007, “Kisses on the Bottom” ends fan’s waiting for new McCartney music. Listen to “My Valentine” a track from this album.
Sharon Van Etten “Tramp” February 7
This Jersey singer-songwriter channels folk tradition while bringing a touch of tenderness to her music. Her newest album, “Tramp”, was produced by The National’s Aaron Dessner. Van Etten will begin a tour following the release of “Tramp” and will be in Columbus on Valentine’s Day. I’ll see all of you there. Give “Serpents” a listen.
Dierks Bentley “Home” February 7
Country mega-star Dierks Bentley’s next album “Home” continues his commercial and radio success. Already, the first single “Am I the Only One” reached No. 1 on the Billboard Country singles. Give it a listen here.
Sleigh Bells “Reign of Terror” February 21
After receiving very positive reviews with the first album “Treats” and appearing at huge festivals, Bonnaroo and Coachella, Sleigh Bells face the pressure as the hype machine kicks into hyper speed. “Reign of Terror”, the second album from the Brooklyn duo, features the same sound of “Treats”. Sleigh Bells combine raw, fuzzy guitars with pounding drums to create a loud and aggressive noise. Expect more fury on “Reign of Terror”. Check out “Born to Lose”.
Bruce Springsteen “Wrecking Ball” March 5
The Boss Man and the E Street Band return with the first studio album since the passing of beloved saxophonist Clarence Clemons. The Hollywood Reporter has described the album as the angriest yet while using economic justice for subject matter. That noted, it is no surprise to see that Rage Against the Machine guitarist Tom Morello, a political advocate, is featured on two tracks including one in memory of Clemons. Check out “Wrecking Ball”, the first single from the record.
The Shins “Port of Morrow” March 20
James Mercer returns to The Shins with the fourth studio album from this Portland band and first under Mercer’s label, Aural Apothecary. After working with producer Danger Mouse in the well received band Broken Bells, Mercer reassembled a band to record again under The Shins name. “Port of Morrow” features drums from Modest Mouse’s drummer Joe Plummer and The Shins have announced a North American tour highlighted by an appearance at Coachella in Indio, Calif. Listen to the first single and find tour dates at The Shin’s official website.
Released: Dec. 6 by Nonesuch Records. “
Stars out of five: Four and an extra half star for giving Northeast Ohio a claim to fame that has nothing to do with Lebron James. “
Sounds like: Your favorite rough-around-the-edges, gritty garage band but without the sub-par song writing. Soulful old-school rock and roll simplified and paired with lusty lyrics. “
Similar to: The White Stripes circa 2003 “
Favorite lyrics: “She’s the worst thing I've been addicted to.” and “When I need to replace her, I am the Mind Eraser.” “
Listens before you get into it: 1 or 2 tops “
Favorite tracks: Track 1. Lonely Boy and Track 5. Money Maker “
Listen to this album: When you need to convince Mila Kunis (or any other out-of-your-league babe) that you're a secret agent, and the two of you sleeping together is the only way to save the universe. Turn on "“El Camino"” and become a lusty sultan of suave. Get the girl and drive away into the sunset.
Ever watch a movie that is missing a musical element to it? A highly explosive, high adrenaline, bone-crushing film that lacks the proper soundtrack to fully push the neurons in your brain to the highest point?
One of the most provocative sounds of our generation, the genre of dubstep, has captivated not only the minds of the world’s youth, but the boundaries of what mankind know as music today. Every new genre has had a key ringleader in its birth and growth. Rock & Roll had Elvis Presley.
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