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Hiss Golden Messenger: December 8, 2017 The Bowery Ballroom

December 12, 2017
By


Hiss Golden Messenger’s second night at The Bowery Ballroom not only picked up where the first two-hour show left off, but gathered steam. If the first night–in front of a slew of friends and local musicians–felt like a more intimate, freewheeling affair, this show situated the current version of the band as the confident rock n’ roll outfit they are, playing about fifty percent different material from the first show, improving on several of the repeats, and delivering crowd-pleasing covers that are red meat to a weekend crowd. After opening with the contemplative “When the Wall Comes Down” from Hallelujah Anyhow, the tempo picked up and stayed hot through the first hour. I was moved by this version of “Blue Country Mystic,” which hewed closer in tempo and style to the Poor Moon original than some of the recent versions I’ve seen, and likewise, the “Red Rose Nantahala” we saw both tonight and the night before felt closer to the version from Haw than some of the recent versions we’ve heard. The new songs haven’t given the band as many chances at new arrangements, but it’s safe to say that “Like A Mirror Loves A Hammer,” shows great potential as a mid-set jam song.

After a heartfelt mid-set version of “Caledonia, My Love” — introduced by Phil Cook as his favorite HGM song — it was back to the rock, with the band letting loose with a fine cover of “I Won’t Back Down” followed by “Lost Out In the Darkness” and the party jam “I’m A Raven (Shake Children).” This is a band that knows their crowd, and the upbeat rockers matched the mood in the room, as the weekend warriors and the repeat customers from last night both had come ready to celebrate the weekend and the band’s success. Instead of last night’s heartfelt retelling of the band’s origin story, we got some hilarious riffs about the band’s long night out last night, including an encounter with some pretzel chips. But if they were physically running on fumes, HGM didn’t show it. If anything, I found most versions of what they played even sharper and more emphatic than the previous show. In lieu of an encore break, the band accepted some pretzel chips from a fan and passed them around the crowd, ending the night with Pops Staples’ “Friendship” followed by “Drum.” This wasn’t quite the end of HGM year — they headed to Philly the following night, and D.C. after that — but it felt valedictory nonetheless, an exclamation point on a year well spent.

I recorded this set in the same manner as the previous night, with a soundboard feed from the band’s engineer Tim and Schoeps MK22 microphones. The sound quality is excellent. Enjoy!

Download the complete show: [MP3/FLAC/ALAC]

Hiss Golden Messenger
2017-12-08
The Bowery Ballroom
New York, NY USA

Exclusive download hosted at nyctaper.com
Recorded and produced by acidjack

Schoeps MK22 (at SBD, PAS bar)>KCY>Z-PFA + Soundboard (engineer: Tim)>Sound Devices MixPre 6>24/48 WAV>Adobe Audition CC (align, mix down, limiter)>Izotope Ozone 5 (EQ, effects)>Audacity 2.0.5 (track, amplify)>FLAC ( level 8 )

Tracks [Total Time 2:02:30]
01 When the Wall Comes Down
02 Saturday’s Song
03 Jenny of the Roses
04 [banter1]
05 Biloxi
06 Gulfport You’ve Been On My Mind
07 Blue Country Mystic
08 Mahogany Dread
09 Don’t Let Me Down [Beatles]
10 Like A Mirror Loves A Hammer
11 Red Rose Nantahala
12 [banter2]
13 Highland Grace
14 [banter3]
15 Caledonia, My Love
16 Domino
17 I Won’t Back Down [Tom Petty]
18 Lost Out In the Darkness
19 I’m A Raven (Shake Children)
20 I Am the Song
21 [banter4-band intros]
22 Southern Grammar
23 [banter5]
24 John the Gun
25 [pretzel break]
26 Friendship [Pops Staples]
27 Drum

Band:
M.C. Taylor – vocals, guitar
Phil Cook – keyboards, harmonica
Mike Lewis – saxophone
Skylar Gudasz – vocals
James Wallace – organ, percussion
Ryan Gustafson – guitar
Michael Libramento – bass
Darren Jesse – drums

PLEASE SUPPORT Hiss Golden Messenger: WebsiteTwitter | Buy Hallelujah Anyhow

Hiss Golden Messenger: December 7, 2017 The Bowery Ballroom

December 10, 2017
By

Children are essential to the origin story of Hiss Golden Messenger, and they’ve been a recurring theme in Mike “M.C.” Taylor’s songs since the beginning. Taylor introduced “Drum” on this night by telling the story in full, of a loser (his words) washed up from music, left out of life, sitting in a cabin next to a newborn, wondering about the future. Contemplating his life as he sat next to his newborn son Elijah, Taylor started to make music again. For him that child wasn’t just a literal birth; it was his personal rebirth, too. It was there that he wrote my favorite of all his songs, “Call Him Daylight,” which tackles the ambiguity of forces greater than us (some would view that as “God,” though I don’t think you have to). To that entity he says at one point, “Some call you destroyer, some Daylight.” It’s a fundamental paradox of many world religions — you’re asked to revere god as your creator, but also your ultimate destroyer. Which kept me thinking about children, and this band’s particular choices in 2017.

The righteous anger of musicians (not to mention the rest of us) toward the current regime is hardly news at this point, and it’s been reflected in many, many albums this year. If you follow the man on Twitter, you might expect the same from Taylor. But the latest Hiss Golden Messenger album does perhaps the braver thing, certainly the rarer thing. It’s announced by the title, Hallelujah Anyhow. A child who wakes up alive for the first time tomorrow here in America won’t know the name of anyone in the current administration, won’t harbor rage toward the rich or the indecent or the greedy, won’t know about hate, won’t worry about global warming, won’t fear misogyny or racism, won’t know war. In a child’s eyes the world is all beauty. In a child’s eyes this world is all they’ve known.

Taylor and a stacked band of Triangle locals (Phil Cook, Skylar Gudasz, Darren Jesse, Ryan Gustafson, Mike Lewis, James Wallace, Michael Libramento) brought that ethos to the Bowery Ballroom for this first of two nights, giving us two hours of inclusive, upbeat Hallelujah songs as well as a well-chosen selection of favorites. The past two years have seen this band release not less than three complete albums — the band hit another high point with 2016’s Heart Like A Levee and companion album Vestapol — which has stacked the catalog with new material. If you missed the outstanding Music Hall of Williamsburg show the band did in 2016 (which I unfortunately did) this could well have been your first time hearing many of these songs live. It’s striking how cohesive the Merge-era, bigger-room-oriented material is with itself, but there’s also that constant thread that reaches all the way back to Bad Debt. Compare the two songs that Taylor played as a duo with Cook —  “Drum” (a very old one) and “Caledonia, My Love” (a new one) — and it’s clear that Taylor’s heart remains where it has been, in a purgatory between light and darkness. Each of those songs may have been an outlier on their respective albums, but side by side, they make sense.

Still, this was a positive night, a two-hour “evening with,” and there was plenty of party music to celebrate with, including the band’s semi-regular cover of Sam Cooke’s “Having A Party” and the main set closers “Domino” followed by the already-classic “Southern Grammar.” Having seen these songs performed many times now, by a variety of personnel, I’ve come to appreciate the variations in Taylor’s performances of his work. Songs, too, are a kind of offspring, an evolving gift to a wider world, and Taylor has continued to help these songs grow into new and different entities than what they were. Taylor’s restless tinkering with this music seems almost calculated to keep you in that state, able to see his music as brand-new even if you’ve seen him a dozen or more times before. If you’re lucky you’ll listen long enough that you find yourself, however briefly, like that open-hearted child again, able to say that simple word, hallelujah. You stand there inside the Bowery Ballroom, and it’s the holiday season, it’s New York City, and you’re alive. So hallelujah, anyhow.

I recorded this set with Schoeps MK22 open cardiod microphones mounted at the soundboard, with a feed of the PA mix from the band’s dapper sound engineer Tim. The sound quality is excellent. Enjoy!

Thanks, as always, to Mike Taylor and to Merge Records. 

Download the complete show: [MP3/FLAC/ALAC]

Hiss Golden Messenger
2017-12-07
The Bowery Ballroom
New York, NY USA

Exclusive download hosted at nyctaper.com
Recorded and produced by acidjack

Schoeps MK22 (at SBD, ORTF)>KCY>Z-PFA + Soundboard (engineer: Tim)>Sound Devices MixPre 6>24/48 WAV>Adobe Audition CC (align, mix down, limiter)>Izotope Ozone 5 (EQ, effects)>Audacity 2.0.5 (track, amplify)>FLAC ( level 8 )

Tracks
01 [intro]
02 Call Him Daylight
03 Biloxi
04 Jenny of the Roses
05 I Am the Song
06 Gulfport You’ve Been On My Mind
07 Say It Like You Mean It
08 Lost Out In the Darkness
09 Tell Her I’m Just Dancing
10 Red Rose Nantahala
11 Heart Like A Levee
12 [banter-the story of HGM]
13 Drum*
14 [banter2]
15 Caledonia, My Love*
16 I’ve Got A Name for the Newborn Child
17 Like A Mirror Loves A Hammer
18 I’m A Raven (Shake Children)
19 Lucia
20 Having A Party [Sam Cooke]
21 Harder Rain
22 Domino
23 [banter3–band intros]
24 Southern Grammar
25 [encore break]
26 Friendship [Pops Staples]

Band:
M.C. Taylor – vocals, guitar
Phil Cook – keyboards, harmonica
Mike Lewis – saxophone
Skylar Gudasz – vocals
James Wallace – organ, percussion
Ryan Gustafson – guitar
Michael Libramento – bass
Darren Jesse – drums

*M.C. Taylor/Phil Cook Duo

PLEASE SUPPORT Hiss Golden Messenger: WebsiteTwitter | Buy Hallelujah Anyhow

Wilco: March 24, 2017 Big Ears Festival (Knoxville, TN)

October 27, 2017
By

© Copyright David Simchock. Provided with permission by Big Ears Festival.

Wilco is the kind of popular band that is perfectly suited to a festival like Big Ears. For the past several years, the Knoxville, TN-based festival has put on the kind of genre-agnostic, fan-focused, music-focused event that is an increasing rarity in a festival environment where the top-line band is invariably a mainstream hip-hop act or LCD Soundsystem. Wilco have been called “dad-rock” and a variety of other things like it, but there’s nothing embarrassing about liking a band that has continued to focus on songwriting and continued trying to do something new. If you don’t believe that, you obviously didn’t see, or hear about, Jeff Tweedy’s experimental set during this festival with Chikamorachi (we hope to share that soon).

On this night, Wilco took the stage at the Tennessee Theatre and played a set true to the festival’s style, cranking out several extended noise-jam numbers including “Spiders (Kidsmoke)” and caterwauling “Impossible Germany.” If this didn’t offer quite the novelty of the Yankee Hotel Foxtrot set at Solid Sound later in the year, this set was nonetheless a special one, including starting with the fairly-rarely-played “Radio Cure.” The set doesn’t so much flow as exist as a series of climaxes and valleys, though the noise outro from “I Am Trying to Break Your Heart” into a furious “Art of Almost” is a particular pleasure. Schmilco and its several obligatory appearances gave several points in the set a more sedate feel, as none of these songs seem to have yet established themselves as live breakouts, though “Locator” feels like the most obvious candidate to get there (and is easily the best of the Schmilco songs played at this show). Wilco ended the night with a lesser-played number of 2017, “A Shot In the Arm,” whose coda could as easily have been a message to the music festival world at large: “What you once were isn’t what you want to be any more.” Indeed, if you’re in the business of attending or putting on music festivals, I’d recommend a look at Big Ears.

This set was recorded by Matt Honkonen of the Big Ears staff with a Zoom H6 and was provided to us by Big Ears. The sound quality is a bit compressed at points, but the fairly ideal location of the recorder in the theater yields an overall pleasing result. Enjoy!

Speaking of Big Ears, we’re going to be posting a bunch of sets from the 2017 festival in the upcoming weeks in anticipation of the 2018 festival. The initial lineup announcement comes November 1 and tickets are onsale November 3. 

Download the complete show: [FLAC] | [MP3]

 

Wilco
2017-03-24
Big Ears Festival
Tennessee Theatre
Knoxville, TN USA

Recorded by Matt Honkonen
Produced by acidjack

Zoom H6 (internal mics, at SBD)>WAV (16/48)>Izotope Ozone 5 (EQ, effects)>Adobe Audition CC (compression, amplification)>Audacity 2.0.3 (track)>FLAC ( level 8 )

Tracks [Total Time: 1:58:16]
01 Radio Cure
02 If I Ever Was a Child
03 Cry All Day
04 I Am Trying to Break Your Heart
05 Art of Almost
06 Pickled Ginger
07 Misunderstood
08 Someone to Lose
09 War on War
10 Via Chicago
11 Bull Black Nova
12 Reservations
13 Impossible Germany
14 We Aren’t the World (Safety Girl)
15 Box Full of Letters
16 Heavy Metal Drummer
17 I’m the Man Who Loves You
18 Hummingbird
19 [banter]
20 The Late Greats
21 [encore break]
22 Random Name Generator
23 Jesus, Etc.
24 Locator
25 Spiders (Kidsmoke)
26 A Shot in the Arm

PLEASE SUPPORT Wilco, visit their website, and purchase their Star Wars and their other releases from their website [HERE]

Robyn Hitchcock: March 24, 2017 Big Ears Festival (Early and Late Shows)

October 24, 2017
By


[Photo by Bill Johnson. From Robyn Hitchcock’s Facebook page]

Not long after we caught Robyn Hitchcock on two nights with Yo La Tengo as his backing band, Robyn made his way up to what is likely America’s most musically adventurous music festival, Big Ears, which has enthralled listeners down in Knoxville, Tennessee for the past few years. The independent festival has continued to grow in stature while retaining a unique musical character; there’s room in its lineups for rock, experimental noise, classical, folk, and more, but you’ll find an admirable absence of the Top 40-type bands that are now the main draws of almost every major U.S. festival. Robyn’s sets at this year’s festival were divided into an early and late show, and each has its pleasures. Both sets opened with Dylan covers (“Chimes of Freedom” and “Not Dark Yet”). The early set continued in the covers vein, with Robyn lighting up songs by the Beatles (“Dear Prudence”) and Syd Barrett (“Terrapin”) and closing with the Soft Boys’ “I Wanna Destroy You,” that last one being a particularly interesting feat for a solo singer/guitarist. As you might expect, the late show took on a more freewheeling character, with Robyn giving songs like “I Often Dream of Trains” and “Adventure Rocket Ship” extended and hilarious introductions.

As longtime Robyn fans, we’re thrilled that the Big Ears team provided us with access to these recordings. We look forward to partnering with the Big Ears crew in 2018.

The next Big Ears Festival begins on March 22, 2018. Watch for the lineup to be announced next week!

Early Show: [LMA Page] | [Direct MP3] | [Direct FLAC]
Late show: [LMA Page] | [Direct MP3] | [Direct FLAC]

Early:

Late:

Robyn Hitchcock
2017-03-24 (early show)
Big Ears Festival
The Standard
Knoxville, TN USA

Produced by acidjack

Zoom H6>WAV (16/48)>Izotope Ozone 5 (EQ, effects)>Adobe Audition CC (compression, amplification)>Audacity 2.0.3 (track)>FLAC ( level 8 )

Tracks
01 Chimes of Freedom [Dylan]
02 Dear Prudence [Beatles]
03 Terrapin [Syd Barrett]
04 My Wife and My Dead Wife
05 [banter1]
06 Saturday Groovers
07 [banter2]
08 Fifty Two Stations
09 Full Moon In My Soul
10 Raymond Chandler Evening
11 I Want To Tell You About What I Want
12 I Wanna Destroy You [Soft Boys]

___________________________
Robyn Hitchcock
2017-03-24 (late show)
Big Ears Festival
The Standard
Knoxville, TN USA

Produced by acidjack

Soundboard + Zoom H6 (internal mics, at SBD)>WAV (16/48)>Izotope Ozone 5 (EQ, effects)>Adobe Audition CC (compression, amplification)>Audacity 2.0.3 (track)>FLAC ( level 8 )

01 Not Dark Yet [Bob Dylan]
02 I Pray When I’m Drunk
03 Madonna of the Wasps
04 [banter]
05 The Devil’s Coachman
06 Serpent at the Gates of Wisdom
07 N.Y. Doll
08 [banter2]
09 I Often Dream of Trains
10 [banter3]
11 Adventure Rocket Ship
12 [banter4]
13 I’m Only You
14 [banter5]
15 Mad Shelley’s Letterbox

PLEASE SUPPORT Robyn Hitchcock: Website | Twitter | Buy Official Releases

Clearance: October 13, 2017 Rough Trade NYC

October 20, 2017
By

The Chicago band Clearance have been at it for a few years now, having first gained broader notice with a track debut from their current full-length, Rapid Rewards, on Stereogum. Various corners of the Internet have compared them to Pavement, having more (to this listener) to do with their wry sense of humor than their exact musical style, which falls into the broad camp of “indie rock” or “alt-rock” or “garage-rock” or whatever you want to call guitar-driven music that isn’t made by meatheads these days, but is delivered, at this stage, with a certain professionalism that wasn’t Pavement’s stock-in-trade until career end.

This set at Rough Trade NYC represents a solid eleven (with one additional that was aborted) song introduction to the band, including “You’ve Been Pre-Approved.” But among the set, I was most taken with the band’s latest single, “Are You Aware,” an upbeat burst of optimism that might fit less within the “ironic slacker” framework, but is just the dash of musical Prozac you want on a Friday after a wearying week. By the time the song downshifts in its final segment, you’re feeling the relaxation wash over you. We also got some new songs in the mix, including “Chances Are” and “Haven’t You Got the Time,” the latter of which has a bit more of a 90s Britpop feel than some of the band’s other songs. The band closed with the short-burst anthem “She’s A Peach,” which ended abruptly in under two minutes. At first it seemed like a mistake or a joke, but then it became clear — the song had said all it needed to say. Clearance are that kind of band.

I recorded this set in the same manner as the Widowspeak set, with Schoeps MK5 microphones and a soundboard feed from Jeremy. The sound quality is excellent. Enjoy!

Download the complete show: [MP3/FLAC/ALAC]

Clearance
2017-10-13
Rough Trade NYC
Brooklyn, NY USA

Exclusive download hosted at nyctaper.com

Recorded and produced by acidjack

Soundboard (engineer: Jeremy) + Schoeps MK5 (DFC, at SBD, PAS)>KC5>CMC6>>Sound Devices MixPre6 (24/48)>polyWAV file>Adobe
Audition CC (align, mix down, compression, limiter)>Izotope Ozone 5 (EQ, effects, image)>Audacity 2.0.5 (track, amplify, dither, downsample)>FLAC ( level 8 )

Tracks
01 Had A Fantastic
02 The Prospect
03 Destination Wedding
04 Frozen Orange / No Wonder
05 Gallery Glare
06 Are You Aware
07 You’ve Been Pre-Approved
08 Owner/Operator
09 Chances Are
10 Haven’t You Got The Time?
11 Another Arrow [stops]
12 She’s A Peach

PLEASE SUPPORT CLEARANCE: bandcampFacebook 

Widowspeak: October 13, 2017 Rough Trade NYC

October 17, 2017
By


Widowspeak just released their fourth album, Expect the Best. It gave me a little jolt of nostalgia to see what’s now by any definition a veteran band taking the stage in Brooklyn again, six years after I caught one of their earliest shows at Glasslands. It also gave me hope: Here’s a band that has thrived from day one on the very simple proposition of writing good songs and performing them well, and continues to be well-received.

This show at Rough Trade marked the end of the band’s recent tour in support of Expect the Best, and it had that triumphal homecoming feel about it, from the crowd of friends and showgoing regulars to the career-spanning setlist. After all, it’s not like Widowspeak need to hunt around Brooklyn for converts. Expect the Best feels like a darker, slightly less pop-driven record than 2015’s All Yours, as befits the times and singer Molly Hamilton’s recent decamping to her home in the Pacific Northwest. Likewise, the new record also has more of a “live” sound to it, a bit looser than the band’s recent efforts, and that also works to the advantage of these songs like, particularly the set opener, “Right On,” which reminded us that despite the association of this band with more of a hazy, laid-back sound, they are more than capable of rocking out. As noted, the set also reached back to the band’s first album for three of their best-loved numbers, the unforgettable “In the Pines,” “Gun Shy” and Hamilton’s Pacific Northwest in-joke “Harsh Realm.” Hearing those songs played by a tightly-knit four-piece — a much fuller sound than the trio had back in 2011 — only reminded me again that some things do improve with time. Widowspeak are one of those bands that has not only stayed consistent, but keeps putting out great new music. That album title they chose this time says it all.

I recorded this set with a soundboard feed from house engineer Jeremy combined with Schoeps MK5 microphones. The sound quality is excellent. Enjoy!

Download the complete set: [MP3/FLAC/ALAC]

Widowspeak
2017-10-13
Rough Trade NYC
Brooklyn, NY USA

Exclusive download hosted at nyctaper.com

Recorded and produced by acidjack

Soundboard (engineer: Jeremy) + Schoeps MK5 (DFC, at SBD, PAS)>KC5>CMC6>>Sound Devices MixPre6 (24/48)>polyWAV file>Adobe
Audition CC (align, mix down, compression, limiter)>Izotope Ozone 5 (EQ, effects, image)>Audacity 2.0.5 (track, amplify,
dither, downsample)>FLAC ( level 8 )

Tracks [Total Time 1:13:35]
01 Right On
02 Perennials
03 Warmer
04 In the Pines
05 Narrows
06 All Yours
07 [banter1]
08 Ballad of the Golden Hour
09 The Dream
10 Expect the Best
11 Gun Shy
12 [banter2]
13 Dog
14 The Swamps
15 Harsh Realm
16 Fly On the Wall
17 [banter3]
18 Coke Bottle Green

PLEASE SUPPORT Widowspeak: Facebook | Captured Tracks | Bandcamp

 

Nathan Bowles Trio: September 8, 2017 Three Lobed / WXDU Hopscotch Afternoon Jamboree (Raleigh, NC)

October 16, 2017
By

It’s an article of faith that artists who are friends of Three Lobed Recordings always bring their best for the label’s annual Hopscotch day show showcase, co-sponsored with Durham’s WXDU. Nathan Bowles, a multi-year veteran of the event, outdid himself this year, choosing to use this platform to debut his new trio with Casey Toll on double bass and Rex McMurry on drums. Although this was the trio’s very first show, you wouldn’t necessarily have known it, as Bowles and the new band added new heft to what were originally his solo songs (“Blank Range”) as well as coming out strong with new ones (one untitled, one known as “Freshfaced”). Bowles’ current music has already redefined and expanded the notion of modern banjo music, but the trio promises to push things even further, offering the opportunity to head in directions he hasn’t yet contemplated in other groups in which he participates, such as the Black Twig Pickers. For one, these songs feel a bit more like rock songs, with McMurry’s drumming pushing a faster tempo and an overall heavier direction, particularly on the new song. “Freshfaced.” Seeing Nathan Bowles is always a treat — and it’s something we do as often as we can — and this trio only adds to the anticipation of what he’s up to next. Bowles has a few shows around the southern U.S. this month, so go have a listen if you can.

I recorded this set with Evan Lamb’s house mix, plus an additional soundboard feed of the banjo, together wtih Schoeps MK4V microphones onstage, and AKG 460 cardiod mics hung over the audience. The sound quality is excellent. Enjoy!

Nathan Bowles Trio
2017-09-08
Three Lobed / WXDU Hopscotch Afternoon Jamboree
King’s
Raleigh, NC USA

Recorded and produced by acidjack
Hosted at nyctaper.com

Soundboard (engineer: Evan Lamb)+Schoeps MK4V (onstage)>KCY>Z-PFA>AKG 460/CK61 (FOB, DFC)>(24bit/48kHz WAV files)>Adobe Audition CC (align, mix down, compression)>Izotope Ozone 5 (EQ, effects)>Audacity 2.0.5 (track, amplify, dither)>FLAC ( level 8 )

Tracks
01 Blank Range
02 [untitled for now]
03 Freshfaced

SUPPORT NATHAN BOWLES: Pay to download this recording | Website | Bandcamp | Paradise of Bachelors

Songs: Molina: September 8, 2017 Hopscotch Music Festival (Raleigh, NC)

October 12, 2017
By

After attending one of the four 2014 Jason Molina tributes put on by his former bandmates and special guests, I wasn’t sure whether the tradition would continue. Thankfully, many of those same former Magnolia Electric Co. bandmates (as well as Mike Taylor of Hiss Golden Messenger) were on hand for this extremely special evening at Hopscotch Music Festival (you can see the full lineup of people below). It’s not possible to replicate what Molina had, that injured moan of a voice with such depth behind it, but as these folks have proven, it is possible for his indelible songwriting to live on through others. Molina was much more than a performer or songwriter; he was a poet of the human condition and a penetrating chronicler of his own struggles.

Though a different vibe than the intimate Hideout in Chicago, this set established its own tension between celebration and mourning. Each musician onstage was connected with Molina in some way, and the set spanned several of Molina’s projects, from Songs: Ohia and Magnolia Electric Co. to his solo work. No matter what flavor or style of Molina’s work you enjoyed most, there was something for you, from the countrified “Old Black Hen” and “Hope Dies Last” to more rocking numbers like “Hot Black Silk” and the “The Dark Don’t Hide It.” But as is so often the case for me personally, it was the two closing songs from 2003’s landmark Magnolia Electric Co. that got to me most — the impeccable, powerful statement of endurance and resurrection that is “Farewell Transmission,” followed by the elegiac “Hold On Magnolia,” an anticipation of an eventual end, abetted by its desperate plea to hold on a bit longer. Molina’s music is eternal, whether or not it continues to be performed live, but my hope is that it continues to be, by this cast of characters or a similar one. He was a singular presence in music, worthy of paragraphs (and indeed, an excellent bio). But really, his music speaks for itself. So go enjoy it.

I recorded this set with Schoeps MK4V microphones from the floor, together with a soundboard feed. The sound quality is excellent. Enjoy!

Download the complete show from its Live Music Archive page: [MP3] | [FLAC]

Songs: Molina
2017-09-08
Hopscotch Music Festival
Fletcher Opera Theater
Raleigh, NC USA

Recorded and produced by acidjack for nyctaper.com

Schoeps MK4V (LOC, PAS)>KCY>Z-PFA + Soundboard>>Zoom F8 (24/48 WAV files)>Adobe Audition CC (align, mix down, compression)>Izotope Ozone 5 (EQ, effects)>Audacity 2.0.3 (track, amplify, balance, downsample, dither)>FLAC ( level 8 )

Tracks [Total Time 1:37:54]
01 Whip-Poor-Will
02 Hammer Down
03 Just Be Simple
04 Old Black Hen
05 O! Grace
06 North Star
07 Cross the Road
08 [banter1]
09 Leave the City
10 Alone With the Owl
11 Hard to Love A Man
12 Shenandoah
13 What Comes After the Blues
14 Hope Dies Last
15 31 Seasons In the Minor Leagues
16 Northstar Blues
17 The Dark Don’t Hide It
18 Two Blue Lights
19 Hot Black Silk
20 Lioness
21 [banter2]
22 Farewell Transmission
23 Hold On Magnolia

Band:
Wallace Cochran – vocals
Jason Evans Groth – guitar and vocals
Skylar Gudasz – vocals
Michael Kapinus – keyboard and vocals
Joseph O’Connell – guitar, bass, vocals
Mark Rice – drums and vocals
Pete Schreiner – bass, guitar, vocals
MC Taylor – vocals and guitar
Casey Toll – bass

If you enjoyed this recording, you ought to purchase the music by many of these fine musicians, including Songs: OhiaMagnolia Electric Co., Hiss Golden Messenger.

Kevin Morby: September 9, 2017 Hopscotch Music Festival, King’s (Raleigh, NC)

October 10, 2017
By

Kevin Morby’s star continues to rise, and deservedly so, with his latest album City Music continuing the confident vein of his previous work. Like most of Kevin’s recent shows that I’ve attended, this headlining night at King’s during Hopscotch Music Festival was packed. I’m not sure how much of a contribution the Volvo commercial has made to Kevin’s popularity, but anything that gets more people in the door for him, I’ll take it. Certainly, Morby is now far beyond the “formerly of Woods” label; he’s a big deal in his own right.

This being the end of the night, the crowd was fired up and rowdy, and Morby and his band handled that gamely, putting on a loose-but-rocking set to go with the overall mood. Morby kept the set focused on the new record, while sprinkling it with some of his best-loved songs, including “Harlem River” from Kevin’s first album, of the same name, plus “I Have Been to the Mountain,” “Dorothy,” and “Destroyer” from Singing Saw. But it was the “encore” portion of this show that will probably be best remembered, as Morby took us through his version of reggae-rockers Sublime’s mid-90s classic, “What I Got,” followed by his special version of the Velvet Underground’s “Rock & Roll.” It was the perfect kind of end-of-festival show, with a meeting of the minds between performer and audience that benefited both.

I recorded this set with our friend Randy’s installed AKG 460 microphones in the “FOB/DFC” position, plus a feed of Evan Lamb’s house mix. The sound quality is excellent. Enjoy!

You can catch Kevin on his fall tour of Europe right now. See the dates on his website here.

Download the complete show: [MP3/FLAC/ALAC]

Kevin Morby
2017-09-09
Hopscotch Music Festival
King’s
Raleigh, NC USA

Recorded and produced by acidjack for nyctaper.com

Soundboard (engineer: Evan Lamb) + AKG 460/CK61>Zoom F8>24bit/48kHz WAVs>Adobe Audition CC (align, mix down, compression, fades)>Izotope Ozone 5 (effects, EQ)>Audacity 2.0.5 (track, amplify, balance, dither)>FLAC ( level 8 )

Tracks [Total Time 1:01:00]
01 intro>City Music
02 Crybaby
03 [banter1]
04 Aboard My Train
05 Harlem River
06 Destroyer
07 I Have Been to the Mountain
08 [banter2]
09 Dry Your Eyes
10 Dorothy
11 What I Got [Sublime]
12 Rock & Roll [Velvet Underground]

PLEASE SUPPORT Kevin Morby: Facebook | Website | Store

Chris Forsyth & the Solar Motel Band: September 21, 2017 Union Pool

October 9, 2017
By

No matter how many times we see Chris Forsyth & the Solar Motel Band, we always have something new to look forward to. This set celebrated the official release on No Quarter records of Dreaming In the Non-Dream, whose material we had heard live in various stages of completion over the past year. The outstanding final album versions are a can’t miss, so it was interesting for us to see how they’ve evolved live since the album’s release. This show at Union Pool covered three quarters of the album (meaning, three out of four songs) as well as two favorites from The Rarity of Experience, “High Castle Rock” and set-closer “The First Ten Minutes of Cocksucker Blues.” Forsyth broke this show into three parts, which he characterized as the “high-impact instrumental section, the singing section, and the long section.” As Forsyth regulars, we were jazzed to get a rare cover — Neil Young’s “Don’t Be Denied” as part of the vocal portion. But really, any appointment with Chris and his excellent band is one worth keeping. Catch them out on the road stateside for a few November shows, including November 18 at Brooklyn Steel with Luna.

I recorded this set with MBHO cardiod microphones, together with Doug’s house. The sound quality is excellent. Enjoy!

Chris Forsyth & the Solar Motel Band
2017-09-21
Union Pool
Brooklyn, NY USA

MBHO MBP603/KA200N (at SBD, PAS) + Soundboard (engineer: Doug)>Sound Devices MixPre6 (24bit/48kHz WAV)>Adobe Audition CC (align, mix down, compression)>Izotope Ozone 5 (EQ, effects)>Audacity 2.0.3 (track, amplify, dither)>FLAC ( level 8 )

Tracks
01 History & Science Fiction
02 High Castle Rock
03 Have We Mistaken the Bottle for the Whiskey Inside
04 Don’t Be Denied [Neil Young]
05 Dreaming In the Non-Dream
06 The First Ten Minutes of Cocksucker Blues

SUPPORT Chris Forsyth: Website | Bandcamp

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