Tag Archives: live

[Electronic] NOTNO – Live


New York City’s rising electronic act, NOTNO, has been cultivating some stellar sound design in recent months. I first caught wind of the duo when their uplifting tune “Take It Back” dropped around three months ago. Since then the energetic yet ambient style these two have mastered has been making multiple appearances in my kick back playlists.

Their most recent release, “Live,” builds on this juxtaposition between upbeat and downtempo approaches. The track opens by establishing a huge, spacey atmosphere that soon strongly driven by groovy basslines, high flying synths, and progressive percussion. To top it all off, echoing vocals accent the track’s otherworldly energy with a vocal hook that promises to stick in your head. Check out the tune here, and if you’re into it, give their other recent release, “Gold,” a listen.

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[Show Review] Deerhunter at The Observatory North Park, San Diego, CA

Deerhunter is one of our favorite experimental rock bands around right now. We’ve been following them for years, and to finally get to see them in concert was an occasion. On Friday night the Atlanta-born musicians took to the stage in San Diego, CA and delivered what we consider to be a performance solidifying their place as neo-rock superstars. Their music live seems to be the only way we want to listen to them from now on.

Lead singer Bradford Cox had a stage presence that was anticipated, but proved surprising in one respect. While we expected his presence to be profound, we weren’t expecting it to get so dance-y. It was much to our pleasant surprise that waves of dancing erupted in the crowd more often than not, namely the movement session that accompanied the latter part of “Living My Life”—a single from their latest album Fading Frontier that was accompanied by a saxophone in this live rendition. And who could forget the seductive stripping of Cox’s suspenders that followed not long after.

Towards the middle of the show the band dedicated a performance to the memory of Cox’s stepmother, set to the song “Take Care.” The song is already an enchanting piece on its own, but the band altered and extended the breakdown, taking the song to new depths that it hadn’t possessed previously. The percussions in particular led a crescendo that left the crowd in complete silence, only to erupt moments later in a reverent roar.

Following an encore, the band did a few of their older classics like “Desire Lines,” in which guitarist, vocalist and Lotus Plaza-creator Lockett Pundt sang it in its entirety. The passion and talent of the duo together was truly a sight to see. Following this came a few songs from the album that first got us started on Deerhunter, Microcastle and hearing the songs “Cover Me Slowly” and “Nothing Ever Happened” live were moments that we had hoped for but did not expect given the older date of that record.

The set wound up being, overall, everything that we could have asked for, and more. It’s sent us into a week long phase of listening to their discography, and has us being very appreciate of being able to catch them live. Hopefully, it won’t be the last time

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[Event Review] Interpol – Denver, CO – Ogden Theatre – 9/27

Ancient Ways

Every so often a band comes along and takes hold of both your ears and heart; their entire catalog consuming your soul while simultaneously strengthening its hypothetical grip on its listener over time. Such is the case for this writer with one of New York’s most treasured musical exports of the last decade: Interpol. Needless to say, when the now five-piece post-punk indie revivalists, who are on the heels of their fifth full length album El Pint0r (and second without longtime bassist Carlos Dengler), checked the city of Denver as a stop on their latest tour; The Music Ninja would surely have sent at least one willing representative. And what a delicate, mystical and inspirative performance they delivered on a most beautiful Saturday night at one of our city’s most intimate and sonically tuned venues, The Ogden Theatre.

The crepuscular ensemble  strutted out one by one to the Ogden’s stage amidst a dark, smokey shroud until finally lead vocalist Paul Banks assumed his position in front of the mic stand and say “hello” much to a raucous Denver crowd’s collective ecstasy. Interpol’s chosen live visual aesthetic was akin to a film noir; with gloomy lighting and minimal visuals playing off of their unique, highly recognizable sound  -while their crowds diversity (which on this night was completely sold out) never ceases to amaze. From older fans strictly of the group’s first two LP’s Turn On the Bright Lights and Antics, to younger, chic listeners of the so-called hipster persuasion and everything in between; the mass was undeniably in attendance for one reason. A rather stripped down but just as lively version of El Pintor single “My Blue Supreme” was the chosen opening vehicle for an eager audience to board before swinging it up once again for a reminiscent delivery of perhaps this writer’s single favorite Interpol tune, “Evil”. As the night wore on, Paul, Daniel, Sam, Brandon and Brad undoubtedly fell into an incendiary groove. The troupe found themselves sleekly cycling between intimate crowd favorites like “Narc”, and “NYC” as well as El Pintor fare including “Same Town, New Story”, “Everything Is Wrong”, an astounding live rendition of “My Desire” and an upstart encore performance of “All the Rage Back Home”.

While we’ve heard the division of Interpol aficionados arguing over their lack of recording polish since the departure of said Carlos D; their live show certainly carries with it the same intriguing edge on which their legions of fans built such strong opinions in the first place. All in all, it was a great performance from a band still retrotting the steps on its identity and their live show hasn’t struggled nearly to the level some critics would suggest. Don’t miss Interpol on the rest of their tour with remaining North American tour dates below, and stream the El Pintor single “Ancient Ways” above.

10-02 Dallas, TX – Southside
10-03 Houston, TX – House of Blues
10-03-05 – Austin, TX – Austin City Limits
10-07 New Orleans, LA – House of Blues
10-09 Memphis, TN – Minglewood Hall
10-10-12 Austin, TX – Austin City Limits
11-06 St. Petersburg, FL – Jannus Landing
11-07 Orlando, FL – House of Blues
11-08 Miami, FL – Fillmore
11-10 Atlanta, GA – Tabernacle
11-11 Nashville, TN – Marathon Music Works
11-14 Minneapolis, MN – First Avenue
11-15 Milwaukee, WI – The Pabst Theatre
11-17 Columbus, OH – Newport Music Hall
11-18 Toronto, Ontario – Kool Haus
11-20 Montreal, Quebec – Metropolis
11-21 Boston, MA – House of Blues
11-22 Philadelphia, PA – Union Transfer
11-24 New York, NY – Terminal 5
11-29 Washington, D.C – 9:30 Club

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[Show Preview/Denver Giveaway] Caroline Smith – Hi-Dive, 2/7

Oh how we love to talk about our favorite artists whilst being able to hook up our amazing contingency of Music Ninjas with some perks in the process. Singer/songwriter Caroline Smith has seen a consistent musical symbiosis take place over the last few years; from early in her artistic career being embraced by the indie/folk community before recently being the focal point of one of our favorite press quotes of the year by the Star Tribune: “Goodbye, sweet, cuddly indie-folk songbird. Hello, sexy, glam R&B singer”.  Her last LP Half About Being a Woman released back in October, and we just could not manage to shake those beautiful tunes for months afterwards, especially our personal favorite “Magazine” (which you can and should stream the Audiotree session for below). So in advance of Caroline Smith’s impending Half About a Woman album release tour, which kicks off in just three days, we wanted to team up for another ticket giveaway for our Denver family!

Caroline Smith invades one of our absolute favorite rock-bars in the Mile-High City, The Hi-Dive, this Friday, February 7 and we’d love to get you a pair of tix to the show. Entering is beyond easy. Just fill out the mailing list form below, “like” the Caroline Smith and The Music Ninja Facebook pages, and we’ll contact you via e-mail. There are a few rules, of course:
– You must be 21 or over to enter.
– You are responsible for transportation.
– You must bring a valid form of ID to pick up your tickets at the door.
– You must shout “I Love The Music Ninja” upon entry.

Good luck, ninjas!

Be sure to be on the lookout as we had the chance to sit down with the super-talented artist over the weekend and will run her full interview in the coming days. Check out the rest of the tour dates for Caroline Smith’s U.S. tour and stream the Audiotree Session of her track “Magazine” after the jump!
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