Interview - Stu Larsen
7/29/14 by Cathy Wagner
Cathy: Using only onomatopoeia, how would you describe your music to someone who’s never heard it before?
Stu: This is actually the hardest question to answer, and I actually have no idea… Meow meow whisper drizzle….?
C: Your new album, Vagabond, was just released in the US, and the other day you played a sold out album release show in London. First off, congratulations! What made you decide on London for the location of the album release show, as opposed to closer to home?
S: Thank you! I really wanted to do a special show on the day the album came out, and I just happened to be in the UK at the time, so it made sense to have the show in London. There was a little piece of home at the show though as it turns out, my mother and sister decided it would be a great idea to fly from Australia to London to surprise me at the show. It was the best surprise.
Run River North
7/19/14, The High Watt
I’ve only been to a show at The High Watt that was filled to capacity on one occasion, so walking in and seeing a nearly full room for Run River North’s headlining show was a pretty big deal to me. It caught me off guard initially, but I couldn’t help but kick myself and think, “Well, of course” as soon as the band began their set. Music like theirs is simply too good to be played to an empty room.
7/21/14, The Basement
It is an amazing privilege to see a band start from humble beginnings and watch them flourish over the years. This is exactly the thought that went through my mind while seeing The Vespers perform a hometown show at The Basement last Monday night. I remember first hearing the 4-piece at a small outdoor stage in a park near my university in middle GA. Now, after two full length albums, several years of touring, and a successful Kickstarter campaign that fueled their upcoming release, Sisters And Brothers, The Vespers have fully come into their own to take Nashville by storm.
After an amazing set by Anderson East, a local singer-songwriter with a voice as sweet as honey and strong as whiskey, the crowd was ready for the Vespers to hit the stage. They opened with the first song off Sisters And Brothers, “Break The Cycle”, and flew right into a cover of “Grinnin’ In Your Face”, a song that was featured on 2012’s The Fourth Wall. Let me just insert here that Callie Cryar’s vocals are completely insane. Chill inducing, breathtaking, absolutely insane. The band is rounded out by her sister Phoebe and brothers Bruno and Taylor Jones. Multi-faceted and multi-talented, the whole band definitely has their flow down pact; it’s almost hard to keep up with them even on the tiniest of stages with as many instrument changes that happen throughout the set.
7/16/14, Queen Ave Art Collective
I walked in to the Queen Ave Art Collective about an hour before show time, and there I found Mark Redito, aka Spazzkid, preparing for the show while drinking one of Nashville’s finest brews, a Yazoo Pale Ale. His laidback and worry-free personality translated well into his music and a live show that was full of positive energy. As the lights dimmed for Queen Ave’s second show ever, Spazzkid turned the garage/art gallery/music venue into a one-of-a-kind dance party.
After warping a variety of vocal samples that said “spazzkid,” Redito demonstrated his talent as a DJ and performer with a couple hard-hitting dance tracks. The crowd was instantly entranced, and not just by the exciting music, but also by Spazzkid’s unique stage presence. When he was not needed at his laptop and electronics, he took a step back and jumped around just as much as the crowd, even joining them throughout the night, belting lyrics at the top of his lungs. A few songs into the set, Spazzkid played “Lovers” from the recently released Promise EP, a song that sounds like a head on collision between Toro Y Moi and Classixx. As he triggered the distorted vocal samples, Redito got the crowd to sing along with the high pitched “oohs” and “ahhs.”
A couple weeks ago, while browsing Spin’s “New Music” tab, I stumbled upon a picture of man from the Philippines wearing wide-framed glasses, with hair tied back in an Asian-style, standing in the middle of tall green reeds next to a river (Yes, that’s the picture above!). Intrigued by the picture, I followed the link and discovered the music of Mark Redito, aka Spazzkid. After pressing play on the Soundcloud track of his newest single, “Goodbye,” I was washed over by tropical steel drums, warm synths, and softly spoken vocals. This song, along with the rest of Spazzkid’s music, effortlessly blends chill-wave and dance genres. It wouldn’t be strange to encounter his music at a club Saturday night and then again on the couch the following Sunday morning.
On July 16th, Spazzkid will be playing at the Queen Ave Art Collective. For only $5 at the door, you’d be crazy to miss what is sure to be one of the most intimate venues Redito will ever play. For more info on Spazzkid and the show, click here.
Boy & Bear
6/24/14, 3rd & Lindsley
As I debated the best way to overcome the “Southern Sun”, I sought refuge at 3rd & Lindsley to check out Australian indie rockers Boy & Bear. Turns out I wasn’t the only one who had this idea. Boy & Bear have a tight history with Nashville, what with it being the location where their debut album, Moonfire, was recorded, so it was no surprise to me that the city showed up in hoards to pack in and ultimately sell out the band’s show.
Interview - Boy & Bear
6/19/14 by Cathy Wagner
Cathy: I obviously need to ask… What is your favorite type of bear?
Tim: Polar bear by far.
C: Boy & Bear is pretty much touring nonstop from now through the end of the year, in the US, Canada, Australia, and all throughout Europe. What’s one thing you can’t live without when you’re on the road?
T: I need to have a fair few books. On tour there is a lot of waiting around, and having too much thinking time is no good, so books are a must for me.
C: One of your stops on this trek will be in Nashville, playing at 3rd & Lindsley on June 24th. What should audience members who will be seeing you for the first time know before attending a Boy & Bear live show? Anything special they should expect?
T: -Laughs- Special? I suppose it depends what you mean by special? We love playing live and talking a bit too much sometimes. But hopefully people can expect a pretty fresh show, as we’ve just had two weeks off.