Sunday, June 30, 2013

Damian, Stephen, & Julian Marley Set Up Shop at Hard Rock Hotel Las Vegas

To celebrate the release of their compilation album, Set Up Shop Volume 1, Ghetto Youths International, which includes Bob Marley's sons, Stephen, Julian, and Damian, have embarked on a two-week tour.  I was lucky enough to catch them poolside at the Hard Rock Hotel in Las Vegas on Friday.

Before yesterday trumped it, it was the hottest day of the year in Vegas, with a high of 115.  By 9pm, time the show was scheduled to start, it had cooled down to 107.  But the performance didn't begin until after 10.  There's a fine line between exploiting people for money and being just plain sadistic, and Hard Rock crossed it.  Sure, you could take a dip in their cloudy pool, but if you wanted a drink, you'd have to spend $30 for a cocktail or $7 for Bud Light.  Water bottles could also be purchased for $7, but thankfully the security guard let me keep mine.  It was even hotter within the crowd, so while mist machines could've helped to cool things down, the only ones they had were in the cabanas surrounding the pool that you could rent for an exorbitant amount.

The backing band kicked things off with an instrumental "Concrete Jungle," both setting the mood and proving their capability.  A hypeman appeared and introduced the first act: dancehall MC, Black-Am-I.  He performed both of his tunes from the comp, "Samson Strength" and "Modern Day Freedom," the latter of which allowed him to show off his singing skills.  Jo Mersa was next, but he'll need a bit more time to live up to his musical lineage as Bob's grandson.  Although he rocketed out with "Bad So," aggressively spitting fire like Buju Banton, the momentum couldn't be sustained for "Comfortable," where his sup-par singing voice and unique pronunciations of words rendered the song incoherent.  Christopher Ellis proved a more fruitful branch on his family tree.  The youngest son of Alton "the Godfather of Rocksteady" Ellis, Chris emerged wearing an Elvis t-shirt, and eased into Gregory Isaacs' "Willow Tree."  The UK crooner kept the lovers rock going with his own "End of Time."  Though the lyrics were quite generic, his voice was so smooth that you forgave him, especially when he closed by singing "I really got to thank you" multiple times to the crowd.  Wayne Marshall, a Jamaican deejay who's been at it for over a decade, was also feeling the heat.  "Las Vegas is hotter than Jamaica," he said with a smile after performing "OK" and "I Know."  He segued from "Overcome" into "No Letting Go," a tune by another Wayne, Wayne Wonder.  It was nice to finally hear the crowd sing along.  He wrapped up the medley with "Sufferer," a track he'd done with Bounty Killer.  Julian Marley finished off the first set with four modern roots songs, dancing around joyously, the light catching his dreadlocks as he spun.  "One of my favorite colors is green," he said, cueing green lights to bathe the stage for the marijuana anthem "Boom Draw."   He closed with the powerful "Jah Works," singing, "None of the riches of the world can stop Jah works," almost in direct defiance of the ostentatious, hedonistic city.

For set two, the band dusted off "Sun is Shining" before bringing out Damian "Jr. Gong" Marley for his opening salvo.  The four-song assault began with the incendiary "Confrontation" before transitioning into his Skrillex collab "Make It Bun Dem," which gave way to compilation-namesake "Set Up Shop," and completed with "More Justice," the crowd providing the "Read all about it!" to his "Extra! Extra!"  It was great to see an artist so genuinely enjoying the crowd participation, Damian politely asking, "Can I see the hands up one more time, please?"  Too many of the hands, however, were holding cellphones (and even iPads!) to record the performance, so many that it was like I was watching the show through a bunch of little TV screens.  It was just one facet of a shitty audience that included an obnoxious drunk wearing only briefs, who would periodically jump in the pool and then rub against you until he got back to his spot, as well as short girls who called me a motherfucker for blocking their view even though they were at the back of the crowd.  (I've said it before, and I'll say it again: If you want to be in front of me at a concert, let me know that you can't see because you're short; not because I'm tall.  I didn't get to choose my height.)  Jr. Gong was able to transcend the assholes and the heat with a trio of love songs, with Christopher Ellis playing the Bobby Brown role on "Beautiful."  To ensure us he wasn't going all soft, he commanded, "This one dedicated to warriors only," before launching into the fiery "Dispear."  After a trio of Bob songs, the band kicked in with the organ riff from "Exodus" that begins "Move!"  "Oh, yes," said Marley, nodding his head.  He didn't feel the crowd was getting into it enough, so he had the band unravel the song and restart it, which actually subdued things even more, the only misstep Gongzilla made all night.  But he followed it with his best performance of the evening, slowing his rapid-fire vocals down to criticize politicians, scientists, doctors, and the media with "Patience."  His flag-waver spun the pre-'74 Ethiopian flag behind him, creating interesting patterns as he obscured the light.

Forty-six minutes in, Jr. Gong announced, "Right about now, we're gonna take the show up another notch," inviting his older brother Stephen to the stage.  "From Las Vegas to Jamaica," sang a heavier Stephen, launching into "The Mission."  The brothers found their way into "The Traffic Jam," and were joined by surprise guest Spragga Benz to finish the song and preview the new "Bongo Nyah."  They finished off the four-song run with "Jah Army."  Sadly, the medley included the only songs played from Stephen's discography, which was strange considering his top-billing.  He did seem a little dazed though, occasionally dropping lyrics, so maybe the heat had gotten the best of him.  He stuck around to help Damian with the rest of the set, and the duo were joined by all the Ghetto Youths for "Could You Be Loved," each singer taking his turn to toast.  Despite everything going on around him onstage, Jr. Gong was still fascinated by the crowd, remarking "Sweet" each time the crowd sang back the hook.  It was, well, sweet.

Gratefully, they didn't make us wait too long for an encore, Jr. Gong returning to take us down the "Road to Zion."  At the end of the road, we were welcomed to Jamrock, which invigorated the crowd in the way Damian had been yearning for the entire evening.  Splashes from the pool behind me soaked my back as we all cheered "Murderrrrr" together.  I was finally unified with the crowd, the perfect send-off to my Vegas vacation.


SET ONE (56 minutes) -
Concrete Jungle (Instrumental) / Samson Strength / Modern Day Freedom / Bad So / Comfortable / Willow Tree / End of Time / OK
 / I Know / Overcome > No Letting Go > Sufferer / Systems / On the Floor / Boom Draw / Jah Works

SET TWO (1 hour, 21 minutes) -
Sun is Shining (Instrumental) / Confrontation > Make It Bun Dem > Set Up Shop > More Justice / Hey Girl > Beautiful (feat. Christopher Ellis) / There for You / Dispear / Land of Promise / Punky Reggae Party > War > No More Trouble / Move! / Patience / The Mission > The Traffic Jam (feat. Spragga Benz) > Bongo Nyah (feat. Spragga Benz) > Jah Army / Pimpa's Paradise / All Night / It Was Written / Could You Be Loved (feat. Julian Marley, Spragga Benz, Christopher Ellis, Jo Mersa, Black-Am-I, & Wayne Marshall)

ENCORE (9 minutes) -
Road to Zion / Welcome to Jamrock

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Penguin Prison on a Roof in Las Vegas

Las Vegas is famous for its nightlife, but if slot machines, showgirls, or seven different Cirque du Soleil shows aren't your bag, where do you go?  When every new spot that opens has to be bigger and flashier than the one next door, the six-month-old Commonwealth is an anomaly.  The pre-Prohibition-themed nightclub is located at 525 Fremont St, a few blocks east of the Fremont Experience, and it sticks out in that it doesn't stick out.  The building's dark exterior gives way to an even murkier inside, with tables and walls littered with photographs.  Make your way up the stairs and you'll find the club's true gem, a 2000-square-foot rooftop lit by strings of lightbulbs. A bar flaunting custom beer taps ranging from deer antlers to wooden forks is situated next to a Bimini ring game in the corner.  The vibe is decidedly un-Vegas: a New York bar with LA clientele.  And on Wednesday nights, they invite DJs to perform.  This week's was none other than Penguin Prison a.k.a. Chris Glover.

Glover took the reigns from the house mixer with Fleetwood Mac's "Dreams," easing into the set with a classic.  He followed with his own remix of Lana Del Rey's "Blue Jeans," and while he's prone to sing while he spins, the microphone beside him sat unused.  He continued with some remixes by 
Belgian house DJ, the Magician, and his Brooklyn pals, Holy Ghost!  As the night went on, I became worried that he wasn't going to add any live vocals.  He told me he wasn't sure the patrons would be into it.  Aside from a few people dancing in the center, the crowd was pretty tame.  But I didn't take a cab all the way up to Fremont to just hear his iPod, so I bought him a drink and suggested he give it a whirl.  My pleas worked, and using the Jacksons' "Shake Your Body (Down to the Ground)" as an easy entry, he picked up the mic.  "Yo! Las Vegas," he said, introducing himself as Penguin Prison.  "I'm not used to looking at the Weather Channel app and seeing it say 115. That's crazy."  Thankfully, by that time it had cooled down to a temperate 91, and the mist machines at the club definitely helped.  "This is a song about a place," he announced, launching into "Hollywood," the tune he did with RAC.  Contrary to what he'd anticipated, the crowd loved it, a circle forming around a couple dudes popping and locking.  When Glover broke into "I Wanna Be Your Lover," everyone sang along, though no one could top the man on the mic alternating between crisp falsetto and throaty howls.  He transitioned into Holy Ghost's remix of Curses' "The Deep End" before finishing up with "The Worse It Gets."  The vocal portion lasted a little over twenty minutes, but it was well worth the wait.  I was hoping for his rendition of Sinatra's "The Way You Look Tonight" considering the location, but it was still the best Vegas experience I've had.

Penguin Prison will be deejaying again tonight at midnight at Hakkasan's Ling Ling Club in the MGM Grand.  No sneakers or flip-flops are allowed, so I'm sadly gonna have to sit this one out.  But if you've got the right shoes, wear 'em, and dance the fucking soles off.


SET (with vocals) -
Hollywood > I Wanna Be Your Lover > The Deep End > The Worse It Gets

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Dragon Smoke Pay Tribute to James Gandolfini at Brooklyn Bowl

Stanton Moore appeared alone on the darkened stage, explaining that Anders Osborne's flight was delayed. He was taking a taxi to the venue, so he urged us not to worry: "Take a breather. Have a drink. This is gonna be worth it. I promise." The New Orleans supergroup Dragon Smoke, consisting of Ivan Neville on keys, Galactic's rhythm section of Rob Mercurio and Moore, and Osborne on guitar (standing in for Eric Lindell), has traditionally only played on the Tuesday in between weekends at New Orleans Jazz Fest, plus a handful of West Coast gigs, so last night's concert at Brooklyn Bowl was a true rarity.

They enlisted Anders' friend and collaborator, Billy Iuso, to open the show. Anybody that starts their set with a Funkadelic tune is alright by me. I was just outside the Bowl when I heard Billy and his band rev up "Red Hot Mama." I made my way inside, and grabbed a Brooklyn Blast and a choice spot in the center of the floor. They followed with "The Other One" without getting cryptical. Iuso grew up following the Dead, eventually settling down in New Orleans, so it's only natural that he sounded like Garcia flirting over a keyboard-heavy groove. "Impatient Ain't Ya" had Billy interlocking his guitar lines with a fantastic harmonica player.  The harp sounded amazing through the speakers, but the skilled basslines could have been louder in the mix. The gifted bassist took a lengthy solo on the DMB-esque "The Spark," but then the song deteriorated into an unremarkable drum section leading into the blues romp "Love Slip Up on Ya." They really would have benefitted from a more experienced drummer, but his shortcomings were made up for by the imposing presence of the Native American harp-player. His waist-length tendrils of black hair flowed like a dementor as the electricity (static and musical) connected him with Iuso. They closed with "Trippin' Over Dragons," a fitting choice given the headliner.

Dragon Smoke didn't start with a wisp; they billowed out with Anders' tune, "Darkness at the Bottom." You would've never guessed that they play together so infrequently (aside from Mercurio and Moore, obviously) from how well they meshed. Next up was the funky "Let a Woman Be a Woman" which segued into an incredible "Woke Up This Morning, the theme from The Sopranos, in tribute to the late James Gandolfini.  My face hurt from smiling so hard, but Mercurio's jowls are likely still sore today. While all members were clearly having a ball at the Bowl, the bassist spent most of the show gleefully dropping his jaw at each musical surprise. Billy Iuso joined them for a dancey "Franklin's Tower," playing rhythm to Anders' lead. Once they'd finished, Ivan went on a strange tangent about how the song was "too midrange-y." "Midrange, don't need it," stated Neville. He continued by sharing a few funny acronyms for the airline Anders had traveled on: "Don't ever leave the airport. Don't expect luggage to arrive." Anders, however, had nothing negative to say about the company, even pulling out his cellphone to take a video of the crowd shouting, "Thank you, Laura and Patrick!" to the Delta employees who helped him arrange another flight when his was going to be delayed by six hours.

Their cover of "Ohio" was quite the powerhouse, with Osborne's vicious solo coaxing Stanton off his stool to bang out the beat standing up. The song shifted as Anders ventured across the stage to provide the noodles to Ivan's hearty sauce. Bill Withers' "Grandma's Hands," took a healthy dip into the song that so famously sampled it, "No Diggity." Ivan led the crowd on a soul clap into "Papa Was a Rollin' Stone," and utilized them again to supply the chorus. "Maggie's Farm" delved into space by way of India, and "Will It Go Round in Circles" finished out the over two-hour-long set.

A minute and a half later, Dragon Smoke emerged for the encore. "We gonna dedicate this to the memory of James Gandolfini, y'all," announced Neville. The band cued up a reggae beat, and the last thing I expected was Ivan to start crooning Fleetwood Mac's "Landslide." As I looked around the room, from the smiles onstage to women in the crowd doing their best Stevie Nicks impressions, twirling their arms around in slow-motion, it was apparent that the band had delivered on Moore's promise.

BILLY IUSO - 06.24.13 - BROOKLYN BOWL (50 minutes, 13 seconds)

Red Hot Mama / The Other One / Impatient Ain't Ya / I See You / The Spark > Love Slip Up on Ya > Trippin' Over Dragons

DRAGON SMOKE - 06.24.13 - BROOKLYN BOWL (2 hours, 10 minutes)

Darkness at the Bottom / Let a Woman Be a Woman > Woke Up This Morning / Louisiana Rain / Hercules / Franklin's Tower (feat. Billy Iuso) / Ohio / Somebody Sleepin' in My Bed / Echoes of My Sins / Grandma's Hands > No Diggity > Grandma's Hands > Papa Was a Rollin' Stone / Maggie's Farm / Will It Go Round in Circles


Sunday, June 23, 2013

Rogue Wave & Caveman Love the '80s

I'd seen Rogue Wave live before, but never headlining, so when they announced two NYC dates, one at Music Hall of Williamsburg and one at Bowery Ballroom, I chose the superior venue.

The opening band, Caveman, sounded like they were frozen in 1988 and recently thawed out. Fortunately for them, it wasn't as much of a culture shock as Brendan Fraser experienced in Encino Man... or Blast from the Past. Hipsters have embraced the music of the much-maligned '80s because it's ironic to do so.  And the Brooklyn dream pop band did an excellent job of recreating that 4AD sound, with Matthew Iwanusa jangling away while Jimmy "Cobra" Carbonetti made splashes in an ocean of reverb.  I found myself bored by them, though, because they were totally anachronistic, refraining from adding anything modern to their tunes.  I can understand using elements from the genre as a base from which to build, but music shouldn't be entirely nostalgia.  This argument is complicated by the fact that the musical landscape hasn't changed much stylistically in the past ten years.  I would argue that dubstep is the closest thing the 20-teens have to a decade-defining genre, but in spite of its recent mainstream success, it began in the late '90s.  (Not to mention, it sucks.)  So is there really a reason for revival acts like Caveman?  Only if you're looking to cast a fictitious band to play the prom in an '80s high school movie.

If Zach Rogue's satin jacket with embroidered tigers hadn't been somewhat of a giveaway, once Rogue Wave began playing, I immediately understood why they handpicked Caveman to open.  The swirling drone that ushered in "Siren's Song" marked a new direction for the Oakland band: shoegaze.  Unlike Caveman, however, they didn't directly copy the style, but folded it into their established sound.  The lighting design was strangely abrasive and alienating, with the band members cloaked in shadows until illuminated by sporadic blasts of color.  It would've worked better in a larger room.  The moments of brightness afforded glimpses of the afro-ed Pat Spurgeon, the man behind those big drums so characteristic of Rogue Wave.  They followed it with another Nightingale Floors track, the even-hazier "S(a)tan."

Rogue Wave are a talented group of musicians with the ability to modify their compositions to fit whatever style they're going for.  On their iTunes Exclusive EP, they "exhumed and groomed" several songs from their debut, adding full-band layers to what was essentially a Zach solo effort.  So when it came time to play one of their most beloved songs, "Eyes," they morphed it to fit the sound of the Nightingale tunes, adding in a heavy dose of reverb and some ethereal chords from the keyboard.  When you could see them through the darkness, they wore smiles on their faces, having fun sandwiching a tease of "Nobody Does It Better" in between "Nourishment Nation" and "Publish My Love." "We did that 'cause Pat's such a big Carly Simon fan," Zach revealed at the medley's end. "I love the album covers," Pat chimed in.

Unfortunately, it wasn't as fun for the crowd.  People on the floor repeatedly shouted out requests in between songs, but most went unacknowledged.  One persistent crowdmember got lucky, as Zach attempted to appease him by singing the first four lines of "California." "Keep going!" yelled the fan.  "If you had been here at soundcheck..." Zach trailed off, referring to a deal where if you purchased four tickets to the show, you'd gain exclusive access to the soundcheck. But in a venue as intimate as Bowery, which Zach admitted was one of the best in the country, you shouldn't have to come to soundcheck to connect with the band.  "What I should do is put a setlist out before we play, and you would write the songs down," Rogue suggested.  "We should do that," he mused, almost to himself, seriously contemplating the thought.  "Chicago x 12" kicked off a run of four Asleep at Heaven's Gate tracks to finish off the short set.  In the middle of the song, Rogue tossed a vaseful of flowers out into the crowd.  It was almost like Zach was a shamefaced husband, attempting to solve the problem by literally throwing flowers at it.  The Heaven's Gate numbers received the best response from the audience, but instead of catering to the cheers, the band returned for an encore of three more new ones.  "Everyone Wants to Be You" was the final tune, slowly building to its climax of crunchy distortion and Rogue's screams.  It wasn't a bad show, but it was underwhelming.  I hadn't heard the new record yet (The vinyl is still being pressed.), so maybe I just need to spend some more time with it?  Regardless, if they do end up playing an audience-setlist show, I'll be there in a heartbeat.  And I'm writing down "I Can Die."

ROGUE WAVE - 06.23.13 - BOWERY BALLROOM (1 hour, 23 minutes)

Siren's Song / S(a)tan / Eyes / Nourishment Nation > Nobody Does It Better (tease) > Publish My Love / Figured It Out / Sleepwalker / Love's Lost Guarantee / California (tease) / College / Chicago x 12 / Cheaper Than Therapy > Lake Michigan / Harmonium

No Magnatone / Nearly Lost You / Everyone Wants to Be You

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Jim James & the Roots Team Up at Prospect Park

Two of my favorite concerts this year have been the Roots and Jim James, so for me, it was a no-brainer to attend State of the Union in Prospect Park.  Billed as "an evening of collaborative performances," the show only featured four such collaborations, but solid sets from both acts satisfied the soggy spectators.

"A little rain's nothin' to be afraid of.  I think it makes it more fun," remarked Jim James as raindrops fell on the Brooklyn crowd.  "Every time we've played in the rain, we've been lucky enough to get a beautiful rainbow."  While we never got the rainbow, we did get to watch James have a blast.  On "Know Til Now" alone, he mimicked a sax solo on a real saxophone and danced around with a golden teddy bear statue held high above his head of wild hair.  If it was your first time seeing Jim James in concert, it would've been hard for you not to be completely hypnotized by the charismatic frontman.  However, I attended his fourth solo show ever, at the Music Hall of Williamsburg, so I was more interested in seeing how the band (guitarist/keyboardist Kevin Rattermankeyboardist Dan Dorff, bassist Alana Rocklin, and drummer Dave Givan) would gel now that they'd had more gigs under their belt.  Although they didn't top the dark magic they conjured in "God's Love to Deliver" at MHOW, their time playing together resulted in a few new glorious jams by stretching out some of the other Regions of Light tracks.  After Jim James' solo on "Dear One," he left Dorff, Ratterman, and Givan onstage for a pounding three-member drum section that was then reduced to a Givan solo, packed tightly with propulsive fills.  James returned with a black towel on his head to slow things down with "A New Life," taking what seemed like a minute-long pause before delivering the final "Once more!" into the song's joyous ending.  "Of the Mother Again" benefited from some sweet vocal harmonies from Rocklin and Dorff, as well as a groovy closing trip.  

"All is Forgiven" was the standout. The band ripped open the dirge with sounds resembling the crackling electricity of the switch used to bring life to the Frankenstein monster. They continued down the macabre path with James adding some sax to the high-voltage mix before making his way into the wings.  As it turns out, Jim was the reanimated monster, creeping stiff-leggedly back onto the stage while singing the opening lines of "God's Love to Deliver." The 13-minute opus featured laser keys, a saxophone reprise, and a ferocious electric solo that had the roadie struggling to put the guitar's wireless transmitter back in JJ's suit pocket. "It's a real goddamn pleasure being out here," James said, having finished the Regions album, minus "Exploding."  He capped it off with Monsters of Folk's "The Right Place" and the Woody Guthrie-penned "Changing World" just as the rain stopped.

I was glad the storm ceased, though I knew the weather would have no effect on the legendary Roots crew. Their uninterrupted set in the rain at Beale St. Music Featival in May was the best of the fest. They took the same non-stop house party approach, albeit abridged. Pausing during "Mellow My Man," Black Thought polled the audience, "Brooklyn, y'all still with us or what?" It was a warranted question, as a snippet of "Jungle Boogie" was unfortunately the only tune that had succeeded in igniting the crowd. This made the heady keyboard jam following "Jusufckwithis" an even bolder decision, whereas in Memphis they went with a ?uestlove drum solo that whipped the crowd into a frenzy. If I had to pinpoint the moment things turned around, it was a little ways into the epic "You Got Me" sequence, the hallmark of any Roots show. Percussionist Frank Knuckles jumped from his riser and did a lap around the stage, raising his sticks in the air to elicit applause, and sprinted back to hit his cymbal perfectly in time. This lead into Kirk Douglas singing along with his guitar notes, climaxing into "Sweet Child o' Mine," where audience excitement hit an all-time high.  The Roots owned everyone from that juncture on.  
The band fed off the energy of the fans, and vice-versa, creating that perfect concert symbiosis.

I found it a little disheartening that so much love was shown for the covers as opposed to the originals, but then again, several Roots' classics like "Proceed" and "Step Into the Realm" weren't on the setlist.  But now that we were eating out of their hands, they brought their own material back, and we lapped it up.  The crowd smiled at F. Knuckles' silent hypeman schtick on "Here I Come," but they absolutely lost their shit when the entire band broke into a choreographed dance.  Cody Chesnutt may not have performed "The Seed" at the Bandshell last week, but the Roots plunged into it with gusto, and the fans responded by singing along even louder.  Nobody cared that they were playing it safe by ending with two more covers, especially during "Move on Up" when Capt. Kirk and Tuba Gooding, Jr. leapt off of the stage and raced into the center lane that divided the venue.  "Celebrate Brooklyn! Celebrate life!" Black Thought yelled to the screaming masses.

The stage was dark, but camera flashes illuminated the lion-like Jim James smiling for photos with the band.  We kept cheering for the partnership we'd been promised, and two minutes later, the lights popped on, revealing Jim and the Roots.  They began with "Dear God," bringing to life the Roots' 2.0 version of the Monsters of Folk track. James sang the hook and even busted out some more saxophone. The Roots-James union reached its pinnacle with a 
reggaefied take on Prince's "I Could Never Take the Place of Your Man," so unique in sound that it wasn't immediately recognizable.  They followed with two songs James performed at last week's Bonnaroo Rock n' Soul Dance Party Superjam, Bill Withers' "Use Me" and John Lennon's "Instant Karma!" While typically a fail-safe cover, "Use Me" was a strange misstep, seemingly done in a different key.  "Instant Karma!" was good, but it was over too quickly, possibly because the encore itself was so brief.  Hell, it was only twice as long as "God's Love to Deliver."  And though I would've preferred more of the alliance, I walked home in a good mood, a Jim James' shirt in hand and a Roots' song in head.

JIM JAMES - 06.18.13 - PROSPECT PARK BANDSHELL (1 hour, 15 minutes)

State of the Art (A.E.I.O.U.) / Know Til Now / Dear One / A New Life / Of the Mother Again / Actress / All is Forgiven / God's Love to Deliver / The Right Place / Changing World

THE ROOTS - 06.18.13 - PROSPECT PARK BANDSHELL (1 hour, 10 minutes)


Table of Contents, pt. 1 > The Next Movement > Get Busy > Jungle Boogie > Mellow My Man > Jusufckwithis > Keyboard Jam > Who Are You & Who Are Your Crew* > Break You Off > Turn on the Lights* > You Got Me > Shame on You* > Love to Love You Baby > Shame on You* > Sweet Child o' Mine > Bad to the Bone > Who Do You Love > Bad to the Bone > Immigrant Song > Welcome to Jamrock > You Got Me > Unknown (tease)* > Thought @ Work > Apache / How I Got Over > Get Into It* > Here I Come > The Seed 2.0 > Move on Up > Men at Work



Dear God 2.0 / I Could Never Take the Place of Your Man / Use Me / Instant Karma! (We All Shine On)

Saturday, June 15, 2013

Mavis Staples & Cody Chesnutt Bring a Whole Lotta Soul to Brooklyn

While I was at Barclays with the Postal Service last night, Dry Paint Signs' frequent photographer, Carrie Soom, went to Prospect Park to celebrate Brooklyn with Cody Chesnutt and Mavis Staples.  I ganked her camera for my show, but she was able to snap a few iPhone pics and provide me with enough material to write a review.

Having just watched Cody Chesnutt give an unforgettable performance at SOB's the previous night, it was intriguing to see how he would translate his act to a much larger venue.  As it turned out, it was very similar.  Towards the end of "Everybody's Brother," Cody instigated, "The clouds have parted.  It's time to celebrate, and I can't think of a better way to celebrate than singing together in a communal way."  He led the crowd on a "not turning back" singalong, which was extended while the sound crew fixed a tech issue with the drums.  Cody even found a way to make it into the audience, hopping offstage and over the barrier to dance with an elderly woman during "Do Better to the Young."  Do better to the old as well.  While Carrie preferred the intimacy of SOB's, the addition of a saxophonist and trumpeter was a real treat, bringing a whole new level to "Love is More Than a Wedding Day" and a round of solos during "What Kind of Cool."  "Brooklyn is like a second home to me," Chesnutt admitted.  You're welcome back anytime you please.

Carrie and I caught the tail end of Mavis Staples' set at Beale St. Music Festival last month, so she was excited to see a full show from the queen of contralto.  Despite the fact that she has a new album coming out in two weeks, Staples kept the setlist fairly standard, getting two new tunes out of the way early to make room for some Staples Singers' classics.  "We have come this evening to bring you some joy, happiness, inspiration, and positive vibrations. Enough to last for the next... hmm... six months," Mavis offered, a possible clue that she'll return to NYC at the end of the year.  Which is good, considering knee pain almost stopped her from making it yesterday.  "I'll tell you, ol' devil, the devil is always busy.  He tried to keep us from coming to Brooklyn.  He starts messing with my knee. I said, 'Satan, get back! I'm going to see my friends in Brooklyn!'" Mavis said, eliciting cheers from the Brooklynites before dropping into "The Weight."  Following "Creep Along Moses," she revealed, "I came out here to have a good time, and thanks to y'all, I'm doing just that."  The set ended like it did in Memphis, with Mavis riling up the crowd for "I'll Take You There."  "We're gonna take you way on back.  1970!" she yelled before pointing at someone in the crowd. "You weren't even born!"  In the midst of the song, Mavis demanded, "Brooklyn, can I hear you?"  "Woo!" cheered the crowd.  "Donny?" said Mavis, turning to backup vocalist Donny Gerrard.  "Sounds like Yonkers to me," he egged on.  "Booooooo!" bellowed Brooklyn.  "Oh, Donny, I think you hurt somebody," said Mavis with a laugh.  If the staggering amount of embarrassing mom-dancing was any indication, Staples took everyone there.  Her new LP, One True Vine, drops on June 25th.

CODY CHESNUTT - 06.14.13 - PROSPECT PARK BANDSHELL (1 hour, 12 minutes)

That's Still Mama / 'Til I Met Thee / Everybody's Brother / Under the Spell of the Handout / What Kind of Cool (Will We Think of Next) > Goin' Downtown (tease) > What Kind of Cool (Will We Think of Next) / Love is More Than a Wedding Day / Do Better to the Young > Where is All the Money Going / Don't Wanna Go the Other Way

I've Been Life / Gunpowder on the Letter > Jam

MAVIS STAPLES - 06.14.13 - PROSPECT PARK BANDSHELL (1 hour, 12 minutes)

Can You Get to That / Eyes on the Prize / I Like the Things About Me / The Weight / Too Close > On My Way to Heaven / Creep Along Moses / Freedom Highway / We're Gonna Make It / Instrumental 1* / Instrumental 2* > Let's Do It Again / I'll Take You There

The Postal Service Begins Two-Day Delivery to Brooklyn

The Postal Service kicked off their two-night run at Barclays Center with a set comprised of the entire Give Up album, a few b-sides, and a cover by "the greatest band that ever lived (Ben Gibbard's words; not mine.)."  It was my first time at Barclays, so I'm forewarning you that most of this review will be critiquing the venue.

We emerged from the Atlantic Ave subway station right at the entrance to the the massive building that has always reminded me of a coiled copperhead snake.  I'd never seen it from this angle before, and the circular plaza underneath a large oculus created a welcoming, communal vibe.  That vibe disappeared as soon as we entered the arena.  If the outside is a rusty-scaled serpent, inside is the beast's cavernous belly, with railed staircases forming its skeletal structure.  While seeing Phish last year, I'd commented on how MSG's renovations have turned its space into a flowing ocean of fans.  Barclays, however, chops the crowd into angular chunks with its stairs, harsh lighting from the rafters illuminating the delineations.  It created a sterile, disconnected environment that the Postal Service had a hard time unifying despite their excellent performance.

"Hiya, Brooklyn," Gibbard greeted the audience, taking the stage with bandmate Jimmy Tamborello, and special guests Jenny Lewis and Laura Burhenn.  They dove right in with "The District Sleeps Alone Tonight," with Ben rocking from side to side as he played guitar, and Jimmy's eyes fixed downward on his mixing console and laptop screens.  A strange onstage chemistry for sure, but exactly what you'd expect from the band.  They segued into "We Will Become Silhouettes," which was probably my favorite of the night.  On the record, Jenny Lewis' characters sound detached, troubled with ennui.  They don't have much of Lewis' spirit to them.  But live, that sultry drawl in her voice came out to play, assuring you she was a whole person, not merely a silhouette with each "We will becooome."  Gibbard finished the song at a drumkit on the right of the stage.  "Thank you so much for coming to this tiny, little venue to see us play some songs from ten years ago," Ben teased.  It hit me during "Sleeping In" how great it was to finally be hearing these songs live from a band that wasn't even in the studio together, but traded tracks back and forth through the mail; hence their name.

I was seated in the lower level, but it seemed like I was a half-mile away.  I rarely felt like I was a part of something; just watching from afar.  The stage appeared small, swallowed up by the black curtain draped over that side of the arena.  Gibbard was clearly having a blast though, dancing to the tunes, including some adorable choreographed moves with Jenny on "Nothing Better."  Sadly, it seemed all the dancing was happening onstage.  With the rise in popularity of EDM, I would've figured Tamborello's boombastic beats would've caused the floor to go nuts, but I barely saw any movement down there.  Preceding "This Place is a Prison," Gibbard offered some advice to budding musicians: "You make a record, then you don't do anything for ten years, and then you end up here at Barclays."  But is there really anything to be gained from playing such a large venue without the participation of the crowd?  The soaring conclusion to the song should have been met with thousands loudly singing, "What does it take to get a drink in this place?"  But it wasn't.  Or at least you couldn't hear them.  The only time we really felt connected was clapping along to "Such Great Heights," as the acoustics in sports venues generally favor applause.

The band returned for an encore of the song that started it all, "(This is) the Dream of Evan & Chan," from Dntel's Life is Full of Possibilities.  Gibbard tried to roust the crowd to repeat "Everything will change," the final line of "Brand New Colony," but even that wasn't the full-bodied experience it would've been at MSG.  We can only hope that if they reunite in ten more years, they'll play the Garden.  Until then, enjoy tonight.  And if you're on the floor, fucking dance.

THE POSTAL SERVICE - 06.14.13 - BARCLAYS CENTER (1 hour, 16 minutes)

SET - 
The District Sleeps Alone Tonight > We Will Become Silhouettes / Sleeping In / Turn Around / Nothing Better / Recycled Air / Be Still My Heart / Clark Gable / Our Secret / This Place is a Prison > There's Never Enough Time / A Tattered Line of String > Such Great Heights > Natural Anthem

(This is) the Dream of Evan & Chan / Brand New Colony

Friday, June 14, 2013

Cody Chesnutt Stuns at SOB's

"I know sometimes that rain throws it all off," said Cody Chesnutt during his encore at SOB's last night, thanking the crowd for braving the elements to make it to the show.  Believe me, no one even remembered it was pouring outside.  I might not get off of work in time to see Chesnutt open for Mavis Staples at Prospect Park tonight, but if you can, make it your beeswax to get there.

The evening began with a quiet set from singer-songwriter Jennah Bell.  A beautiful young woman with purple braids and a nose ring, she looked more Badu than Baez, but her songs, at least when accompanied solely by her acoustic fingerpicking, definitely leaned towards folk.  Her voice was honest and bright, exposing tints of twang in "Phoenix Lights" and "John Forbid."  "How many of you are familiar with John Mayer?" Bell asked with absolute sincerity.  "He's got this really great song called 'Slow Dancing in a Burning Room.' I'm gonna attempt not to bring shame to this song."  I'm pretty sure that's the first time that's ever been said.  I'm also fairly certain that her song "Red Rooster" is the only tune out there inspired by the 1991 animated film, Rock-a-Doodle.  Sadly, her gentle performance was inhibited by the sonic imperfections of such an oddly shaped room.  Cheers from a VIP section sounded like they were coming from a distant tunnel, and bar chatter rebounded off the tall walls.  I'd like to see her again, but in a more intimate venue such as Rockwood.  I also want to write a movie just so I can cast her in it.

"Where legends are made" reads the screen behind the stage at SOB's. If there's any justice in the world, Cody Chesnutt will become one. Not yet a household name, when someone asks me who he is, I explain that he's the guy singing the hook on the Roots' "The Seed 2.0," which is an updated version of a song from his debut album, The Headphone Masterpiece. While I feel that record earned its moniker, it's been more than ten years since that indulgent, heavy, brilliant collection of lo-fi neo-soul, and Cody is a different man now. His follow-up disc, Landing on a Hundred, was released just last year, and it's a delightfully peppy mix of Motown and Memphis soul.

As the band attacked with the opening cannonade of "That's Still Mama," Chesnutt appeared at stage left. His outfit's juxtaposition of an army helmet and a red cardigan evoked a sort of black militant Mr. Rogers, an eccentric character you'd meet in the subway. The helmet represents Cody's personal fight against his inner demons, as well as a more global struggle to keep feeling in music. He's not outwardly angry, not that he could even attempt to appear so, testifying on the joyous "'Til I Met Thee." Between lyrics, a quick confession: "Oh, I love life." The crowd was completely captivated.  During "
Everybody's Brother," a few fans attempted to start singing at the point Cody comes in on the record.  He psyched them out and admonished, "Don't get ahead of me."  He took another beat before crooning the first line, "I used to smoke crack." "Oh... my... goodness!" clamored an awestruck female in the front, not at the admission to drug use (He's actually never smoked crack in case you were wondering.), but at Cody's honey butter voice. Marvin Gaye may have been murdered before I was born, but his spirit is alive and well inside Mr. Chesnutt.

There was a smile on my face for the entire concert. "Lemme hear that skin poppin'," he requested, encouraging us to snap our fingers to the jazzy beat of "What Kind of Cool (Will We Think of Next)." "New York City is still cool," he said, grinning with approval. It pains me to think of the subtle snaps and stomps that will be lost on the large crowd at today's Celebrate Brooklyn event.  In the show's centerpiece, "Love is More Than a Wedding Day," Cody admitted, "I wish I had my wife with me right now, but this microphone stand is gonna have to do," taking it for a little dance.  He sang to us, "This is my favorite song on the entire album. Do you want me to tell you why?" "Yes!" we demanded.  He took a seat on the wedge monitor, and explained the song's genesis as a way to reinvigorate and sustain a marriage that had gone so astray that he and his wife felt like strangers.  
The edge of the stage was obviously not close enough for Cody, who ventured onto the floor for "Do Better to the Young," hugging crowdmembers as he sang.  Returning to the stage, he led us in a whispered chant of the chorus to "Where is All the Money Going," letting us know that "even in a whisper, you've still got power."  Chesnutt finished with "Don't Wanna Go the Other Way," taking the time to shake hands and fist-bump everyone in the first two rows as he exited.

The sound tech got on the PA mic and initiated a cheer of "We want more!"  Two minutes later, Cody and band acknowledged the plea and revisited the stage.  "Once again, we're gonna need your participation.  Are you ready to participate?" Cody questioned. Roars.  The band ignited "I've Been Life," and Cody sanctioned the audience to repeat the line, "
Since my birth, I've been the greatest attraction on the earth."  If sung alone, it would reek of the hubris found on Headphone Masterpiece, but done as a crowd, it served as an empowering statement of self-worth.  The melody just begged for a segue into "The Seed," but Cody let it beg.  Chesnutt only reached as far back as 2010's Black Skin No Value EP, which I suppose would be my only criticism of the superlative show.  While some of the sexually graphic or dark material on Headphone might seem at odds with the positivity of the new tunes, there are definitely a few like "When I Find Time" or "Up in the Treehouse" that would fit right in.  "I truly hope you enjoyed yourself this evening. Did you feel something? We're trying to keep that feeling in music," Chesnutt proclaimed.  You're doing an excellent job of it, Cody.  I only hope I can leave my job at a normal hour, so I can feel it again tonight.

JENNAH BELL - 06.13.13 - SOB'S (27 minutes)

Follow the White Rabbit / Phoenix Lights / Chapter 3: The Hatchet / Slow Dancing in a Burning Room / Red Rooster / John Forbid

CODY CHESNUTT - 06.13.13 - SOB'S (1 hour, 18 minutes)

That's Still Mama / 'Til I Met Thee / Everybody's Brother > Under the Spell of the Handout / What Kind of Cool (Will We Think of Next) > Goin' Downtown (tease) > What Kind of Cool (Will We Think of Next) / Goin' Downtown (tease) > Love is More Than a Wedding Day / Do Better to the Young > Where is All the Money Going / Don't Wanna Go the Other Way

I've Been Life / Gunpowder on the Letter / Thank You So Much > Jam

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

The Postelles Deliver a Great Show Despite the False Advertising

When the Postelles announced that they would be playing their latest release ...And It Shook Me in its entirety at their tour-closer at the Studio at Webster Hall, I knew I had to go.  It has all the hooks and singalongs of a great summer album, but there's an alluring sense of melancholy about it as well.  It's no coincidence that the record's cover depicts the band members sprawled in the sand on a well-traveled beach after everyone else has gone home.  I was pumped to see the rest of the new numbers live, as this would be my third Postelles concert this year. 

A few minutes after 10, the band took took the tiny stage and charged right into "Running Red Lights."  This meant the tracklisting wouldn't be performed in order, but no worries, as the song was a nice introduction to their soul-tinged pop/rock sound.  A quick dip into their debut with "Sound the Alarms" revved the crowd up even more for the choice "Caught by Surprise" that followed.  Daniel Balk wore a Rolling Stones '89 tour shirt, and thankfully limited most of his Jagger pantomiming to the first few tunes, though a well-timed point to the venue's low ceiling while hitting the "When I look in your eyes!" line in reggae fashion was a shining moment.  The tender title track gave way to "123 Stop," and the floor exploded with fans singing and jumping along.  The momentum carried into "Hey Little Sister," which ended with Balk coaxing the crowd to repeat the refrain several times.  "You guys sound beautiful tonight!" he complimented.

I'd like to take a moment to give David Dargahi some props, as he's definitely an underrated guitarist.  David serves the songs with his six strings, knowing precisely when to deliver that exact jangle to keep you nodding your head, or that right crunch to add depth to a ditty's emotion.  He's also capable of some serious shredding, as he proved last night with his solo in Wreckless Eric's "Whole Wide World."

The crowd was a visual representation of "Can't Stand Still," dancing as Balk cried out the chorus, leaving his microphone with a fan in the front row to finish out the song.  Before "Pretend It's Love," Balk revealed they only had a few more left, which left me scratching my head.  If they were playing the whole album, they, in fact, had quite a few left.  "We apologize, Webster Hall, but we really wanna fuck this place up," Daniel said, inviting as many fans as would fit onto the stage for "Stella."  It was visually interesting to see the onstage fans singing along, sneaking kisses on Daniel's cheek, and bouncing around, but sadly, Dargahi was nowhere near his mic, so his background vocals were left to the small group of us who remained on the floor.  "That must've sounded like shit. Alright, now get off the stage, you crazy motherfuckers," Balk commanded at the song's end.  But all's well that ends well, as they reprised the final bit to make up for it.  They closed the set with "Tidal Wave," Balk instructing the audience to pogo up and down.  They left the stage with the ...AISM count at 7 for 12, forecasting a lengthy encore.

We got the length, but only one more track from the album.  Billy Cadden's drums kicked off a raucous version of their usual encore starter, "Boy's Best Friend," after which the band paused to inform us that this next song would be its first time played.  "You might notice some people in the audience who look like us.  Those are our parents, and this song is for them," said Dargahi, taking his place at a synthesizer for "Parallel Love."  They did an admirable job on the slower number, which sounds like it could be a Nightmare of You b-side, but they obviously felt the need to amp things up once again after it ended.  Daniel downed a shot of tequila and they pounded out "Beat on the Brat," the highlight of which was a Dargahi solo that deftly combined blues and surf rock, too technically advanced for the Ramones to have ever been able to play.  "Sleep on the Dance Floor" was an unexpected treat before the obvious last song, "White Night."

I discussed the merits and downfalls of album-themed setlists in my review of the Wailers earlier this year, but I just wanted to iterate that there's a certain expectation when you advertise that you are playing an entire album... and it's that you play the entire album. The Postelles played 18 songs last night, meaning they could have easily performed the 12-track record, and still had time for a few covers, "123 Stop," "Stella," and "White Night" to make the kids go bonkers.  Don't get me wrong; the concert was great.  The band was relaxed, the crowd was energetic and adoring, and the sound mix was decent considering how eardrum-shattering it can be in that room.  I even got my wish for a vinyl release, so I'm not going to complain.  I was just really looking forward to hearing "Oh My Luck" live, but I guess that's just my luck. 

THE POSTELLES - 06.11.13 - THE STUDIO AT WEBSTER HALL (1 hour, 8 minutes)

Running Red Lights / Sound the Alarms / Caught by Surprise / ...And It Shook Me / 123 Stop / Hey Little Sister / Heavy Eyes / Whole Wide World / Can't Stand Still / Pretend It's Love / You Know I Won't / Stella / Tidal Wave

Boy's Best Friend / Parallel Love / Beat on the Brat / Sleep on the Dance Floor / White Night

Monday, June 10, 2013

Brooklyn Bowl's Governors Ball Afterparty with Sister Sparrow & Hollis Brown

This weekend's Governors Ball Music Festival turned into a Beale St. situation after a rainy Friday left the ground perpetually soggy.  Despite the mud, Sunday's weather and lineup looked like the perfect combination for festivalgoers, and what better way to cap off the day than to trade in your muck boots for bowling shoes at a rockin' official Governors Ball afterparty with Sister Sparrow & the Dirty Birds and Hollis Brown at Brooklyn Bowl?

Roughly six months ago, I discovered Hollis Brown middling at Deer Tick's Brooklyn Bowl residency.  In March, I went to their record release show at Mercury Lounge.  And the dependable band from Queens just keeps getting better.  Last night's opening trifecta was one for the books, beginning with the chugging "Ride on the Train" before slowing the tempo on the beseeching "When the Weather's Warm," and culminating with the bluesy "Down on Your Luck" that featured the best "ooh" backup vox I've heard from the band.  "We're going to keep the blues going for a bit," said lead singer Mike Montali as they embarked on "Meet Me in the Morning," which was followed by fan-favorite "Gypsy Black Cat."  Don't let Montali's eyeglasses fool you; he's not some Rivers Cuomo clone churning out nerd rock for teenagers.  He's the real deal.  If you need proof, just look where he keeps his guitar, slung low almost to his knees, so he can trade Crazy Horse-style riffs with bearded lead, Jon Bonilla.  "We're gonna play a new song that we've never done live.  Thank you guys for being our test audience," Mike announced.  "You Deserve It All" is definitely a step in the right direction for Hollis Brown.  It's a bit poppier than the rest of their canon, yet it still retains that classic rock sound.  And the decision to go up an octave on the "ooh ooh ooh"s on the last go-round is a commendable one.  Good news for a band that can avoid being pegged as a revival act as long as they continue with the stylistic expansions.

In nature, the male birds are the flashy ones, brightly colored to both attract mates and settle territorial disputes between competitors. Arleigh Kincheloe, also known as Sister Sparrow, is definitely the exception to the rule. The initial shock of hearing such a powerful, smoky voice coming out of such a young, skinny woman was spoiled for me having seen them at Bowlive, but that didn't affect the experience in the least because Arleigh is such an electric performer.  Strutting around the stage, 
whipping around her blouse's cotton cat o' nine tails with every shake of her hips ("This shirt may be the most dangerous thing I've ever worn."), Kincheloe gave it everything she had.  When she quenched her thirst, she gulped from a pitcher of water.  She made you understand why they refer to certain entertainers as magnetic.  It was as if there were tiny magnets in everyone's eyes, and she was a flurry of opposite poles.  You couldn't help but stare at her even if one of the DBs was soloing.  It took maybe two seconds after she took the stage for the venue to erupt into a full-blown dancefloor.

I saw the Main Squeeze earlier in the week, and they classified themselves as post-funk. It was my first time hearing of such a genre, which I suppose they use to describe their incorporation of prog-rock jamming into upbeat R&B numbers. The label could be more accurately applied to Sister Sparrow. The Dirty Birds are definitely a funk band, but they are not exactly a revival group like the Dap-Kings. In the 1980s, rap music was birthed when funk records were sampled as background beats for emcees to rapidly rhyme over.  Though not explicit, the hip-hop influence can be found in the sheer speed and ferocity with which Arleigh spits her lyrics.  And when she slowed things down, like on "Another Ride," you could really hear the richness of that voice.  Listening to her sensually pleading "I want to go on another ride," I had no doubt she was referring to the Mothership of Funkadelic folklore.  Another simmering stunner was the new Joss Stone-esque number, "Mama Knows," which contained a somewhat strange spoken-word section extolling the virtues of family: "I think my mama's the only woman in the world that knows what a pineapple upside-down cake is."  Family is obviously important to the singer, who enlists her brother on harmonica and her cousin on drums. 

In the course of the set, the band performed all four tracks from their Randy Jackson-produced EP, Fight, due this fall.  The first single, "The Long Way" was a lively Ike & Tina-inspired romp that was so fun that I forgave the horn players' chanting at the end that might've been a little too reminiscent of Justin Timberlake's "Rock Your Body."  Barrelling out the gate with a trombone solo from Ryan Snow, "Crawdaddies" was a gritty gumbo of Janis Joplin fronting a NOLA brass band, and Arleigh's guttural howls in "Boogie Man" would've frightened the monster himself.  The sound mix in the room could've been improved with more from Arleigh's mic, the harmonica, and the bari sax, which was especially evident on the closer, "Road Trip," where they took a trip around the stage, each Dirty Bird soloing the distinct birdcall of his instrument.  The hand-clapping breakdown found its way nicely into the post-set encore break applause.  The band returned to the stage once more, Arleigh proclaiming, "We're gonna bring it back real old school" before turning in a soulful rendition of "Roxanne" to bring the evening to its close.  Am I upset I didn't go to Governors Ball?  Not really.  As they say, the afterparty is always better than the party.

HOLLIS BROWN - 06.09.13 - BROOKLYN BOWL (44 minutes, 23 seconds)

Ride on the Train / When the Weather's Warm / Down on Your Luck / Doghouse Blues / Meet Me in the Morning / Gypsy Black Cat / Faith & Love / Walk on Water / You Deserve It All* / Revolution Blues

SISTER SPARROW & THE DIRTY BIRDS - 06.09.13 - BROOKLYN BOWL (1 hour, 35 minutes)

Intro > Millie Mae / No Rest / Eddy / Make It Rain / Freight Train / Another Ride / Hollow Bones > Back in Black / The Long Way / Mama Knows > Lasso / Dirt / Crawdaddies / Boogie Man / Fight / Bulldozer / Too Much / Road Trip