Posts Tagged ‘ live music ’

Alan Licht: January 6, 2016 Union Pool

January 13, 2016
By

IMG_1254

For my first recording of 2016, I got to witness the album debut of a New York music veteran, among a room of like-minded souls. We saw Alan Licht live debut many of the tracks that would make up his latest release, Currents, back in August, but he arrived at Union Pool this time with copies of the finished product in hand, and the ideas on it more tightly wound. Relative to some of his peers, Licht’s songs feel like they ride less on fingerpicking prowess (though that’s considerable) than on the strength of his melodies, which give the thrilling jolt of a good rock song even without the lyrics or band that typically accompanies such things. Like the previous show, this one began with the immediate appeal of “Riding On the S’s” followed by “First Lover, Haleema” from Currents, as well as serving up at least one track that didn’t make the record simply because it wouldn’t squeeze onto a side of vinyl. January shows are always a joy for the true music fan, as the cold weather tends to draw only those who really care, and that was evident in the pin-drop quiet room during these engaging, minimalist tunes. From the delicate “Uncertainty” to the melancholy and final “Seventh Song,” Licht showed off the strength of this latest cycle of creativity. Make a date for his next NYC visit, or wherever you might be able to see him.

I recorded this set with a soundboard feed by Kevin Mazzarelli and Schoeps MK4V microphones. The sound quality is excellent, far superior to the previous recording. Enjoy!

Download the complete show: [MP3/FLAC]

Stream the complete show (minus banter tracks):

Alan Licht
2016-01-06
Union Pool
Brooklyn, NY USA

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

Soundboard (engineer: Kevin Mazzarelli) + Schoeps MK4V>KC5>CMC6>>Zoom F8>2x24bit/48kHz WAV>Adobe Audition CS 5.5 (align, mix down, compression, limiter)>Izotope Ozone 5 (EQ, exciter)>Audacity 2.0.3 (track, amplify, balance, downsample, dither)>FLAC ( level 8 )

Tracks [Total Time 44:17]
01 [intro]
02 Riding on the S’s
03 First Love, Haleema
04 [untitled]
05 [banter]
06 Uncertainty
07 [untitled 2]
08 Currents
09 Raw Deal
10 Seventh Song

If you enjoyed this recording, PLEASE SUPPORT Alan Licht by visiting VDSQ Records and buying Currents there.

Superchunk: December 3, 2015 Baby’s All Right

December 6, 2015
By

superchunk-qbertplaya1
[photo courtesy of Ellen Qbertplaya]

Superchunk spawned one of the most revered independent labels, revitalized the music scene of two entire towns, and continue to inspire men and women alike to pogo at the stage lip singing every word. Few bands can claim those achievements, but even fewer can claim to have not only kept, but expanded their fans’ loyalty since the early 1990s. Mac McCaughan may well be one of his generation’s few ageless indie stars, as unabashedly confessional, athletic and compelling onstage as he was when he was in his twenties. What separates his songs from those of lesser peers is that those lyrics aren’t just reflections of youthful naiveté — they just say what they need to in the most direct, compelling way. It hurts none that behind Mac is a crack band (sans, sadly, Laura Ballance these days) that has only gotten better over the years; if many drummers are hitting the kit better than Jon Wurster at any age, they ought to count themselves lucky. And that doesn’t even begin to touch the humor of Jim Wilbur (who’s a pretty darn good player, too).

The band came into Baby’s All Right on this Thursday to follow up a performance the night before at Ground Control Touring’s 15th Anniversary, meaning they weren’t here to flog a new record or for any purpose other than to remind their fans exactly why they stick around. They rewarded us with a set that drew from all over their catalog, treating 2013’s I Hate Music and their 1990s canon with equal reverence. The sold out crowd gave as good as they got in terms of energy, as the people in the front didn’t stop moving, or singing, the entire time. The band may have joked before “The Popular Music” (from Indoor Living, 1997) about how they would sit around in front of a Britney Spears poster in their practice room and wonder if a new song they were writing would “make them popular” (Mac’s reply — it didn’t) but the reality is that, in the longer run, their efforts worked. Sometimes it’s quality, and not quantity of “popularity” that counts, and Superchunk has the former in abundance. For a certain group of people, Superchunk were a foundational band, in the same way other giants of the era like Pavement (or further toward the mainstream, Nirvana) inspired countless stints as independent radio DJs, memberships in variously-successful bands, and LP/CD collections that burden many of us to this day. In 2013, we called them “the best working band in America today,” and noted that they “don’t have a bad song in their catalog,” and those sentiments remain true to this day.

To be honest, I’m not really sure if they haven’t played the first encore, “The Breadman” single in more than 20 years as claimed, but I’m not going to be that guy who disputes the band on the Internet (according to said Internet, this was only the second time it’s ever been played). I will say that “Hyper Enough,” still rings true — rocking this night with an energy that belied its twenty years in the rotation, and a song whose central premise still rings true of Mac now as when he wrote it. And “Throwing Things,” which closed the first encore, well, it was as compelling as it was when it first appeared on No Pocky for Kitty in 1991. True to their nature, the band came out for a second encore, and closed with “Slack Motherfucker.” Balance wrote the song back in 1990 and, whoever it was addressed to at the time, Mac has proven to be anything but.

I recorded this set with Superchunk FOH Matthew Barnhart’s soundboard mix, together with Audio Technica 4051 microphones onstage. The sound quality is outstanding. Enjoy!

Download the complete show: [MP3/FLAC]

Stream the complete show (minus banter tracks and encore breaks):

Superchunk
2015-12-03
Baby’s All Right
Brooklyn, NY USA

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

Soundboard (engineer: Matthew Barnhart) + Audio Technica 4051 (onstage)>Zoom F8>2x24bit/48kHz WAV>Adobe Audition CS 5.5 (align, mix down, adjust width, fades, very light compression)>Izotope Ozone 5 (EQ, effects, image)>Audacity 2.0.3 (track, amplify, balance, downsample, dither)>FLAC ( level 8 )

Tracks [Total Time: 1:24:15]
01 [intro]
02 Like A Fool
03 Cursed Mirror
04 Hello Hawk
05 Good Dreams
06 Me & You & Jackie Mittoo
07 Punch Me Harder
08 On the Mouth
09 [banter1]
10 Rosemarie
11 Kicked In
12 Iron On
13 The Popular Music
14 Low F
15 Crossed Wires
16 Detroit Has A Skyline
17 Driveway to Driveway
18 Digging for Something
19 [encore break]
20 The Breadman
21 Hyper Enough
22 Throwing Things
23 [encore break 2]
24 Slack Motherfucker

If you enjoyed this recording, PLEASE SUPPORT Superchunk, visit their website, and purchase their albums directly from Merge Records [HERE].

chunklauren
[photo by Lauren Epstein]

Car Seat Headrest: October 15, 2015 NYCTaper Unofficial CMJ Show, Cake Shop

December 4, 2015
By

car seat headrest cereal sounds
[Photo courtesy of Cereal + Sounds]

Twenty-two year old Will Toledo, who performs as Car Seat Headrest, is one of those songwriters whose skill actually matches his high level of output and obvious ambition. That’s a clear reason how, at a young age, and after already writing, performing and producing eleven albums (!!!) on his own on bandcamp, he’s found himself signed to Matador Records, where he’s about to release Teens of Style. Lest you dump this music in the category of mumbly lo-fi bedroom recordings that we’ve all seen a hundred times before, I’d point you to the very first song of this set at our NYCTaper Unofficial CMJ Show, “The Ending of Dramamine,” which was fourteen minutes of off-kilter pop-inflected rock reminiscent of bands like Clap Your Hands Say Yeah, the Cars and R.E.M. Or there’s how Toledo, prior to his affiliation with a “big time” label, had already sold 25,000 copies of those bandcamp-only releases. Oh, and those earlier efforts weren’t made in a bedroom — the story goes that the only place Toledo could find peace and quiet to record was the family car, hence the band name.

Toledo’s songs are lyrically dense, at times funny, at times teenage-confessional, unflinchingly honest. We were excited that Matador offered us the chance to have this artist close our show, because Teens of Style has already appeared on many best-of lists since its October 30 release. All of these songs appeared in some form prior to Teens of Style, but expect to hear brand-new versions of the last three — “Times To Die,” “Something Soon” and “Oh! Starving” — on that record. In the meantime, enjoy these right-on live performances, and expect much more to come, including a show on December 5 at Baby’s All Right.

I recorded this set with Schoeps MK4V microphones in front of the stage and a soundboard feed from Cake Shop engineer Jeff. The sound quality is excellent. Enjoy!

Catch them at Baby’s All Right on December 5. Get tickets here.

Download the complete show: [MP3/FLAC]

Stream the complete show:

Car Seat Headrest
2015-10-15
NYCTaper Unofficial CMJ Show
Cake Shop
New York, NY USA

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

Schoeps MK4V (onstage)>KC5>CMC6 + Soundboard (engineer: Jeff)>>Edirol R-44>2x24bit/48kHz WAV>Adobe Audition CS 5.5 (align, mix down, fades, compression)>Izotope Ozone 5 (effects, EQ, image)>Audacity 2.0.5 (track, amplify, balance, downsample, dither)>FLAC ( level 8 )

Tracks [Total Time 30:19]
01 The Ending of Dramamine
02 Times To Die
03 Something Soon
04 Oh! Starving

If you enjoyed this recording, check out Car Seat Headrest’s bandcamp page, and buy Teens of Style from Matador Records.

 

Pity Sex: October 17, 2015 Ad Hoc Car Wash + March 19, 2015 Long Branch Inn (SXSW – Austin, TX)

November 10, 2015
By

Pity-Sex-7-edwinahay
[photos courtesy of Edwina Hay for Impose Magazine]

The Ann Arbor, MI-based band Pity Sex have done their homework. You’ll hear pieces of a number of 90s acts woven into their sound, which takes advantage of three band members (drummer Sean St. Charles and guitarists Brennan Greaves and Britty Drake) as vocalists and packs a suitably slacker attitude to go with wry-but-serious hooks. It’s pop-punk under a shoegaze haze, with lyrics that echo the band name — tales of breakups and half-assed hookups, self-loathing and dejection. Not to say that, when played to a teeming converted car wash full of what some tourist probably calls “Brooklyn hipsters” on a Saturday afternoon, Pity Sex’s sound isn’t a lot of fun. Joining at-times labelmates LVL UP and a number of like-minded others, Pity Sex delivered some of the best songs off of their current slate (2013’s Feast of Love and the Dark World EP that preceded it), plus their latest stuff, including the buzzed-about new single “What Might Soothe You?” On that note, for fans who’ve been clamoring for new material beyond just the single, there’s good news there, too: Pity Sex have a new record, White Hot Moon, coming out on Run For Cover records in 2016. Having caught this band at SXSW back in the spring, we were excited to see their progress since then at the car wash, and are sure more good things are in store for 2016.

I recorded this set in the same manner as the other recordings of the day, with AT 4051 microphones and a soundboard feed. The SXSW set was recorded with Sennheiser cardiods and a soundboard feed. In both cases, the sound is good, but keep in mind that it’s reflective of the “DIY” nature of the events.

Download the Ad Hoc Car Wash set: [MP3] [FLAC]

Download the SXSW set: [MP3] | [FLAC]

Stream the Ad Hoc Car Wash set: 

Stream the SXSW set:

 

Pity Sex
2015-10-17
Ad Hoc Car Wash
Hand & Detail Car Wash Center
Brooklyn, NY USA

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

Audio Technica 4051 (LOC, FOB, PAS) + Soundboard>Roland R-26>2x24bit/48kHz WAV>Adobe Audition CS 5.5 (align, mix down, edit SBD)>Izotope Ozone 5 (EQ, effects, image)>Audacity 2.0.5 (track, amplify, balance, downsample, dither)>FLAC ( level 8 )

Tracks [Total Time 30:42]
01 What Might Soothe You?
02 Drown Me Out
03 Keep
04 “Burden You” [title unknown]
05 Acid Reflux
06 Coca Cola
07 Wind-Up
08 Dogwalk

Personnel:
Sean St. Charles – Drums, vocals
Britty Drake – Guitars, vocals
Brennan Greaves – Guitars, vocals
Brandan Pierce – Bass

_________________
Pity Sex
2015-03-19
Long Branch Inn – Impose SXSW
Austin, TX USA

Digital Master Recording
Soundboard + Audience Matrix

Soundboard + Sennheiser MKH-8040 Cardioids > Sound Devices 744t > 2 x 24bit 48kHz wav files > Soundforge (post production) > CDWave 1.95 (tracking) > TLH > flac (320 MP3 and tagging via Foobar)

Recorded and Produced by nyctaper

Setlist:
[Total Time 25:55]
01  Keep
02  Acid Reflux
03  Wind-Up
04  Drown Me Out
05  Drawstring
06  Honey Pot
07  Fold
08  Dogwalk

If you enjoyed these recordings, PLEASE SUPPORT Pity Sex, like them on facebook, and buy their albums on their bandcamp page.

Destruction Unit: October 17, 2015 Ad Hoc Car Wash

November 4, 2015
By

Destruction-Unit-10
[photos courtesy of Edwina Hay for Impose Magazine]

I’m pretty sure I can say that Destruction Unit has the best band name of anyone I saw this year. It’s not only catchy in its own right, but describes perfectly the maelstrom of noise that this postmodern Arizona punk band will rain down on you until you either risk your skull in the mosh pit or haul your ass to the exits. Destruction Unit is the kind of experience that’s polarizing, intimidating, and absolutely perfect to close out a show like Ad Hoc’s epic post-CMJ show in a Williamsburg car wash. By the time the band took the stage to close out the evening, the humble PA system was positively shredded, the house team fighting to keep the sound going. The band took things well past the limit, with a long lead-in to the pummeling track “Destruct.” This set stuck entirely to the band’s latest record, Negative Feedback Resistor, their second for Sacred Bones Records, though many of the songs found themselves extended for a few measures. The band was rightly hailed by Newsweek as the best band they saw at CMJ, and it’s hard to argue with that after seeing their live show. Even with the vocals buried under the beating being taken by the PA (you can hear them much better on this recording than you could in the room), it didn’t matter to the crowd, which erupted into a mosh pit early and didn’t let up for the entire, pummeling 35 minutes of this set. If you’re going to make a trip out east to slog your way through a bunch of CMJ shows, you ought to make it count. No question that Destruction Unit did that and more.

I recorded this set in the same manner as the day’s other recordings, with AT 4051 microphones and a soundboard feed. The sound quality is reflective of the setting and the style, and represents it quite well. Enjoy!

Download the complete set: [MP3/FLAC]

Stream the complete set:

Destruction Unit
2015-10-17
Ad Hoc Car Wash
Hand & Detail Car Wash Center
Brooklyn, NY USA

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

Audio Technica 4051 (LOC, FOB, PAS) + Soundboard>Roland R-26>2x24bit/48kHz WAV>Adobe Audition CS 5.5 (align, mix down, edit SBD, compression)>Izotope Ozone 5 (EQ, effects, image)>Audacity 2.0.5 (track, amplify, balance, downsample, dither)>FLAC ( level 8 )

Tracks
01 Disinfect
02 Salvation
03 Chemical Reaction/Chemical Delight
04 If Death Ever Slept
05 The Upper Hand

If you enjoyed this recording, PLEASE SUPPORT Destruction Unit, like them on facebook, and buy their records from Sacred Bones Records.

 

Michael Chapman: October 9, 2015 Tompkins Square 10th Anniversary (Rough Trade NYC)

November 3, 2015
By

20151010-MichaelChapman-1
[photos by Jill Harrison]

The English folk artist Michael Chapman is a true survivor (as one of his album titles suggests), with a 30+ album catalog spanning six decades. From Rainmaker, his 1969 debut, to today, Chapman has explored both more traditional folk and rock music as well as contemporary and jazz guitar, bringing his unique, emotional style of playing to each. Reissue labels like Seattle’s Light in the Attic are furiously re-releasing Chapman’s early catalog, giving fans access to a body of work that belongs in the hands of any devotee of his styles. Chapman’s most recent release of new music, Fish, came out on the Tompkins Square label, and the 74-year old singer captivated the audience for the label’s 10th anniversary show at Rough Trade NYC.

Even with such a massive catalog, this set still managed to feature material that’s only seen the light of day on the live circuit, such as the opener “Two Trains.” There was the song “Fahey’s Flag,” too, a tribute to the American guitar great, who of course Chapman knew personally. That followed with a new vocal track that remains as-yet untitled, followed by another very special treat — “Another Story,” which appears on the forthcoming Parallelogram box set by Three Lobed Recordings (sharing an LP with Hiss Golden Messenger, I might add). Chapman closed with 2000’s “Shuffleboat River Farewell,” followed by the Spanish-inspired tune “La Madrugada,” which first appeared on 2002’s Americana II. The whole of this performance was deeply affecting, notable both for its breadth and intensity. Chapman’s not just a fully qualified survivor, but an innovator at his art.

I recorded this set with Dustin Myer’s soundboard feed combined with Schoeps MK4V microphones. The sound quality is outstanding. Enjoy!

Download the complete set: [MP3/FLAC]

Stream the complete set (minus banter tracks):

Michael Chapman
2015-10-09
Rough Trade NYC
Brooklyn, NY USA

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

Soundboard (engineer: Dustin Myers) + Schoeps MK4V (PAS, FOB)>KC5>CMC6>>Edirol R-44>2x24bit/48kHz WAV>Adobe Audition CS 5.5 (align, mix down, fades, compression, limiter)>Izotope Ozone 5 (EQ, imaging, effects)>Audacity 2.0.3 (track, amplify, downsample, dither)>FLAC ( level 8 )

Tracks
01 Two Trains
02 [banter1]
03 Caddo Lake
04 [banter2]
05 Fahey’s Flag
06 [unknown]
07 [banter3]
08 Another Story
09 Shuffleboat River Farewell
10 [banter4]
11 La Madrugada

If you enjoyed this recording, PLEASE visit Michael Chapman’s website, buy Fish from Tompkins Square, and buy his other releases here.

Bob Brown: October 9, 2015 Tompkins Square 10th Anniversary, Rough Trade NYC

November 2, 2015
By

bob brown-2
[photos by Jill Harrison]

To kick off Tompkins Square’s tenth anniversary celebration at Rough Trade NYC, we were treated to a very special performance by Bob Brown, performing for the first time in 33 years. A longtime friend of Richie Havens, who produced Brown’s first LP, The Wall I Built Myself, Brown is what you might call a cult folk singer of astonishing quality. The “cult” part has more to do with that old bugbear, record labels, than the quality of his work. Brown has shared the stage with a number of noted musicians, including Tim Harden, Neil Young & Crazy Horse, Eric Anderson, and Havens. Though identified primarily with the D.C. scene, Brown recorded his debut here in New York, crashing at the time at the Chelsea Hotel. His label, Havens’ Stormy Forest, got lost in the shuffle of big-label mergers, making further releases a challenge. As is so often the case, but not always deservedly so, Brown eventually retired from music, and his albums went out of print.

Doing what these boutique labels do best, Tompkins Square will be reissuing both The Wall I Built Myself and Willoughby’s Lament next year, finally bringing these masterpieces back to life. But for those lucky ones of us who attended this event, we got the even-rarer treat of seeing this music back on stage. Had he not said the moment was 33 years in the making, you wouldn’t have known it, as Brown capably and beautifully rendered five of his songs, spanning several of his key albums. Helping the cause was Ryley Walker’s crack jazz unit (who would return later in the evening with him), and even with only one rehearsal behind them, they captured the spirit of Brown’s work like the pros they are. Brown’s songs are pastoral, delicate affairs, often with a directness that makes them feel like missives to someone from Brown’s past. Even 45 years after it was written, a song like “Winds of Change” resonates even from its opening line, but each of the five songs played was special. You can hear the first three of the ones from these night on the two reissued albums; “Like A Fawn” is still in print, as is “Perfect Song” from Brown’s collaboration with Aleta GreeneLet Me Be Your Love. What a gift Tompkins Square will give us by letting us hear these original recordings again. We can only hope that Brown follows suit and pays us some future visits.

I recorded this set with a soundboard feed from engineer Dustin Meyers together with Schoeps MK4V microphones. The sound quality is outstanding. Enjoy!

Download the complete show: [MP3/FLAC]

Stream the complete show: 

Bob Brown
2015-10-09
Rough Trade NYC
Brooklyn, NY USA

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

Soundboard (engineer: Dustin Myers) + Schoeps MK4V (PAS, FOB)>KC5>CMC6>>Edirol R-44>2x24bit/48kHz WAV>Adobe Audition CS 5.5 (align, mix down, fades, compression, limiter)>Izotope Ozone 5 (EQ, imaging, effects)>Audacity 2.0.3 (track, amplify, downsample, dither)>FLAC ( level 8 )

Tracks
01 It Takes the World to Make a Feather Fall
02 Winds of Change
03 Quiet Waterfall
04 Like A Fawn
05 Perfect Song

If you enjoyed this recording, please learn more about Bob Brown on his website, and visit Tompkins Square in 2016 to buy his records.

Jake Xerxes Fussell: September 10, 2015 Hopscotch Music Festival (Raleigh, NC)

October 28, 2015
By

hopscotch-festival-2015-15-kennethbachor
[photos courtesy of Kenneth Bachor for BrooklynVegan]

Jake Xerxes Fussell occupies a slightly different niche among his contemporary folk counterparts. Rather than reinterpreting old traditions into new sounds,  Fussell is more of an archivist and explorer, one who gives listeners a window into the original experience of the tunes being played. The Durham, NC-based singer appeared on the very Durham-friendly bill on the first night of Hopscotch Music Festival at the Fletcher Opera Theater, one slot before Phil Cook took the stage (that recording here). Fussell isn’t some latecomer or dilettante to the Southern material that’s on his mind; much like Alan Lomax followed in the footsteps of his father John, Fussell grew up with Fred C. Fussell, a folklorist whose work took him, and often young Jake, across the South, bringing them into contact with many traditional musicians in the process.

Paradise of Bachelors just releases Fussell’s debut record this year, produced by William Tyler, and as you’d expect, this set paid some attention to it. But there was more than that, too, owing to Fussell’s encyclopedic knowledge of the pool from which he draws, which one album can hardly contain. So we got versions of “Man At the Mill” and “Push Boat” from the album, we we also heard some classic Pete Seeger, in the form of “The Bells of Rhymney” and Virginian folk singer Helen Cockram’s “Pinnacle Mountain Silver Mine.” Fussell didn’t need much in the way of flash to get his point across, as he sat along on the broad semicircular stage in front of Cook’s ample stage set. It felt more like a fireside sing-a-long, as given by the kind of music professor you always wished you could’ve had.

Our friend Larry Tucker recorded this set with a soundboard feed together with Peluso subcardiod microphones. The sound quality is excellent. Enjoy!

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

Stream the complete set: 

Jake Xerxes Fussell
2015-09-10
Hopscotch Music Festival
Fletcher Opera Theater
Raleigh, NC USA

Exclusive download hosted at nyctaper.com
Recorded by Larry Tucker
Produced by acidjack

Soundboard>PCM-M10 + Peluso CEMC6-CK21 (subcardiod) (Room center hung from balcony rail)>Fostex FR2-LE>24bit/48kHz WAV>Izotope Ozone 5 (EQ, effects)>Audacity 2.0.5 (track, amplify, balance, downsample, dither)>FLAC ( level 8 )

Tracks
01 If I Lose Let Me Loose [John Lee Ziegler] (cuts in)
02 The Bells of Rhymney [Pete Seeger]
03 Pinnacle Mountain Silver Mine [Helen Cockram]
04 Man At the Mill [traditional]
05 Push Boat [traditional]
06 Jump For Joy [Duke Ellington]
07 Raggy Levy [Georgia Sea Island Singers]
08 Copper Kettle [Albert Frank Beddoe]
09 Pork and Beans [Rosa Lee Hill]

If you enjoyed this recording, PLEASE SUPPORT Jake Xerxes Fussell, like him on Facebook, and buy his debut album from Paradise of Bachelors.

Protomartyr: October 17, 2015 Ad Hoc Car Wash

October 23, 2015
By

Protomartyr-11-edwina-hay
[photos courtesy of Edwina Hay as featured in Impose Magazine]

This was the week of the overwhelming, PR-driven quasi-festival known as the CMJ Music Marathon, meaning there were hordes of tired concertgoers and touring bands around by the time the week wrapped. Taking advantage of that, and perhaps bringing the vibes of our own scene back to earth were the already-legendary concert promoters/magazine Ad Hoc, who rented out a vacant car wash (and its adjoining parking lot) to put on a sprawling ten-band bill that boasted the best of local and touring acts. This event felt like an appropriate evolution for the neighborhood that once housed the best-known DIY venues of the prior decade: Here you had an unused commercial space converted to creative purposes, albeit this time with plenty of bathrooms, quality (and cheap and cold) beer by the can, and even a couple of food trucks.

If you went to a CMJ event this year, chances are you might have caught Protomartyr, who were all over the place at this year’s fest making the case for their recently-released third record The Agent Intellect. The Detroit band saw some heat from their last album, Under Color of Official Right, but consensus seems to be that it’s this new offering that is going to break them into wider consciousness. That’d be a more than fair outcome, as this thirty-minute, ten-song set showed off the best of their material, including “Scum, Rise!” from their previous record and a decent chunk of the new album. Frontman Joe Casey doesn’t exactly match the band’s sound or words, performing as he does in a weirdly-dapper dark blazer and sunglasses, but beneath that veneer boil bleak, personal tales set against the backdrop of the band’s hometown, such as the signature track “Pontiac ’87”. Though you could see the daylight streaming through behind the band (filtered only by the yellow car wash sign), they held the atmosphere where it needed to be, trapping the nervous energy within the stripped brick walls. Compared to some of their harder-edged peers who would share the stage throughout the day, Protomartyr were a bit more “musical” band than some of the other fare, and that’s part of what makes them special. If this CMJ was “their year,” then I say they’ve earned it.

I recorded this set with Audio Technica 4051 microphones and a soundboard feed from Ad Hoc’s staff. The sound quality reflects the “DIY” nature of the venue, but is still quite good. Enjoy!

Download the complete set: [MP3/FLAC]

Stream the complete set: 

Protomartyr
2015-10-17
Ad Hoc Car Wash
Hand & Detail Car Wash Center
Brooklyn, NY USA

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

Audio Technica 4051 (LOC, FOB, PAS) + Soundboard>Roland R-26>2x24bit/48kHz WAV>Adobe Audition CS 5.5 (align, mix down, edit SBD)>Izotope Ozone 5 (EQ, effects, image)>Audacity 2.0.5 (track, amplify, balance, downsample, dither)>FLAC ( level 8 )

Tracks [Total Time 30:45]
01 Devil In His Youth
02 Cowards Starve
03 I Forgive You
04 Ain’t So Simple
05 Want Remover
06 Scum, Rise!
07 Pontiac 87
08 The Hermit>
09 Clandestine Time
10 Why Does It Shake?

If you enjoyed this recording, please like Protomartyr on facebook and buy their records from Hardly Art.

Jennifer Castle: October 4, 2015 Webster Hall

October 20, 2015
By

jennifer-castle-12
[photos courtesy of P Squared Photography]

It’s never an easy task to be a singer-songwriter opening for an eight-piece band in a 1500-capacity venue, but Jennifer Castle pulled off that feat, opening for Destroyer, in a way that let her material shine. I was surprised to discover that we hadn’t checked in with her since a Union Pool show in 2012, which came before the release of her widely-acclaimed 2014 album, Pink City. So, this was our first time getting to engage with much of that material, and I’m glad we had the chance. Accompanied by guitars and keys, but no percussion, Castle spared little time between songs, packing in as much as she could into the thirty-minute slot. What came across, in the big space of Webster Hall, was how strong her voice is, as able to fill this space as the coffee shops and smaller clubs where this music is typically more comfortable. She began with a newer song, “I Don’t Care About Money,” followed by “Powers” from her 2012 album Castlemusic, possibly the strongest track on that offering. From there, the Pink City material began in rapid-fire fashion, beginning with “Working For the Man.” The diaphanous-but-tensile quality of Castle’s voice is especially evident on this song, and the impressive vocal turns continued for many of the new songs. Not that Castle’s a stranger to challenging work — she’s played with everyone from fellow Canadian folkie Doug Paisley to the somewhat more aggro Toronto crews Fucked Up and The Constantines. Even if this setting might not have been the perfect way to be introduced to Jennifer Castle in terms of size, I suspect she earned a lot of new fans here. She continues with Destroyer on the West Coast before heading to Europe with them in November. Make sure to show up early to catch her set.

As with the Destroyer set, I recorded this set with a soundboard feed from the Webster Hall engineer Raphael, with a bit of Schoeps MK41V microphones to add ambiance. The sound quality is outstanding. Enjoy!

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

Stream the complete set: 

Jennifer Castle
2015-10-04
Webster Hall
New York, NY USA

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

Thanks to Jennifer Castle for permission

Soundboard (engineers: Raphael) + Schoeps MK41V (at SBD, DFC)>KCY>Z-PFA>>Edirol R-44>2x24bit/48kHz WAV>Adobe Audition CS 5.5 (fades, align, mix down)>Izotope Ozone 5 (EQ, effects, compression)>Audacity 2.0.5 (track, amplify, balance, downsample, dither)>FLAC ( level 8 )

Tracks [Total Time 29:34]
01 I Don’t Care About Money
02 Powers
03 Working For the Man
04 Truth Is the Freshest Fruit
05 How Or Why
06 Sailor’s Blessing
07 Sailing Away
08 Pink City

Band
Jennifer Castle – Vocals, guitar
Mike Smith – Bass
Ryan Driver – Keyboards

If you enjoyed this recording, PLEASE SUPPORT Jennifer Castle, like her on facebook, and buy Pink City from No Quarter Records.

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