Music On The Goe

David Goe on music

Follow David's weekly Out & About column ON THE GOE
Page 35 of 45


Total Protonic Reversal at the Cavalcade

By David Goe
Thursday, March 21, 2013

Remember in "Ghostbusters" when Egon warned Ray and Venkman about crossing the streams? "Try to imagine all life as you know it stopping instantaneously and every molecule in your body exploding at the speed of light." 

Well, that's what happened last night at the Cavalcade when Radiation City, Brainstorm, and Social Studies all played brilliantly. Total protonic reversal. 

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Study up on Social Studies

By David Goe
Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Social Studies' new album "Developer," is aptly named. One spin of the San Francisco band's latest single "Terracur" is enough to know why. The song starts off with Natalia Rogovin's voice and builds from there. A simple drum beat and guitar riff slowly follow and as the song develops you start to understand why this up and coming band is so popular.

On this album the band stuck with the basics and used simple methods to create layered songs. Using both instruments and emmotion, Social Studies make modern pop music with texture and mood. 

"Before, we were rebellious,"  Rogovin says. "Developer is a more adult record. We tried to explore sounds and draw out parts to write more moving and focused songs."

Catch Social Studies tomorrow night at the Cavalcade in Fruita. They will be performing with Radiation City and Brainstorm. It's a show not to miss.  

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So Brainstorm is Totally Awesome

By David Goe
Monday, March 18, 2013

Hey, so this band Brainstorm is totally awesome. This three piece art pop band from Portland featuring a tuba (yes you read that right) makes really fun and interesting dance music. Combining African guitars, three part harmonies, and elements of soul, Brainstorm are a pretty unique experience. It's energetic, eclectic, and engaging.

Fresh from their performance at SXSW, Brainstorm will appear live, this Wednesday at the Cavalcade in Fruita with Radiation City and Social Studies. The more I learn about these three bands the more I think this is the show of the year. Download Brainstorm's "Beast in the Sky" below and be sure to check them out live.  

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Do This: Radiation City Plays the Cavalcade

By David Goe
Friday, March 15, 2013

What makes a band extraordinary are the details. With a quartet it can be difficult to get everyone on the same page. Five individuals on five instruments can sometimes sound like a noisy mess. Not with this band. Radiation City excels in minutia.

The spirit of Rad City lies behind a mess of blond hair and a pair of thick black rimmed glasses. Often
seen abusing a beautiful blonde Telecaster, this is Cameron Spies, songwriter and sometimes lead singer of the northwest outfit. Playing jazz pop, 1990s rock fusion guitar riffs, Spies’ gives the band its common character.

The soul of the band comes from a voice. This voice, the tone and range of power, is nothing short of brilliant. Hearing it on record is one thing, live it is spectacular. This voice, Elisabeth Ellison’s voice, is Rad City’s moral and emotional identity. Ellison, songwriter and sometimes lead singer, also plays keys, adding a layer of depth to Spies’ guitar work.

The heart of the band comes from the rhythm section, Matt Rafferty and Randy Bemrose. Not too many people notice the rhythm section of a band unless they are really, really bad or really, really good. Rafferty and Bemrose are the latter, gifted musicians that hold the band's sound together. The orchestrations of Spies and Ellison are focused by Rafferty bass lines and Bemrose’s drumming.

These four members alone would make Rad City the envy of musicians everywhere. There is, however, one more piece to the Rad City puzzle.  

Not to be overlooked, adding texture to Rad City’s sound is multi instrumentalist Patti King. On keys, guitar, vocals, violin, and just about anything else that makes noise, King makes a lovely addition to the band. Her flourishes pop the songs to life and make this whole troupe one damn good band.

Rad City makes a point of playing thoughtful, restrained music. They are five individuals making one strong statement. Each section pieces together nicely, like patchwork. Fitting because listening to Rad City is like curling up in your favorite blanket.

Their sound is comforting and easy to fall into. As you sink into a song like “Find It Of Use,” with its multiple layers of synths and slow ringing guitars, a warming calm washes over your body. At this point you realize the band is not just quite good, but exceptional.

Pick any song from the band’s debut album, “The Hands That Take You,” and try not to fall in love.

“There is hope for us yet,” Ellison sings on “The Color of Industry,” the first song I heard from the band. Three seconds in and this one line of optimism is enough to make me. a hopeless romantic for good music, a believer.

Catch Radiation City with opening bands Brainstorm and Social Studies at the Cavalcade in Fruita this Wednesday, March 20. This is an all ages show and tickets are just the best $10 you’ve spent in your life.  

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You Had Me at Alt-J

By David Goe
Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Have you ever listened to a new song or album and just said "YES!"?

That's how I feel right now about UK wonder kids Alt-J. Good lord, they are amazing. Alt-J are a relatively new band, having just released their debut album, and the album stuck in my conscious, "An Awesome Wave" in September 2012. Already it has won the Mercury Prize, an annual music prize awarded for the best British album of the year, and my heart. I love it. 

I don't want to say that they are a good as, or will be as successful as, or as admired as Radiohead, but... Alt-Js songs are well composed and the restraint put on each instrument is near perfect. They don't overdo it on guitars, nor on synth, nor on drums. They are balanced, thoughtful orchestrations. I particularly love the drum rhythms on their songs. They are intricate yet restrained. Amazing work. And don't get me started on the vocal harmonies. All I can say is wow. 

Check out Alt-J's full performance from a recent stop at Seattle's KEXP radio and let me know what you think. 

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Page 35 of 45




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