My love of Mac Demarco goes back several years, and it was delightful to see him again performing the first show of a sold out mini-tour of New York that found him playing Bowery Ballroom on August 17, 2015. As I’ve been seeing Mac Demarco live since he was virtually unknown, it warms my heart tremendously to see him selling out shows across the globe, with his fans crooning along to his love songs in admiration. Even one of his famous friends, Julian Casablancas of the Strokes, popped by on stage just to give Mac a hug.
It’s also crazy to think that Mac Demarco now has a catalog of over 40 songs to choose from for his sets, so now you will walk away from his shows thinking of all the great songs there was no time to play! However, he played the majority of his new EP “Another One” and favorites like “Salad Days,” “Cookin’ Up Something Good,” “Viceroy,” “Still Together” and his cover of “Reelin’ in The Years.” Trust me, if you don’t have all of Mac Demarco’s music, you really need to get on it. I think he is shaping up to be the voice of a generation.
If you don’t believe me, listen and watch this track that I recorded just for you, dear readers. The song is called “Just To Put Me Down?” and can be found on Mac Demarco’s latest EP, “Another One.” Love ya, Mac! May even more success be yours!
On May 10, 2014, British electronic music gods VNV Nation played their first of 2 sold out shows at New York’s Bowery Ballroom. It was my first time seeing VNV Nation and before I go any further, I must give VNV Nation’s lead singer Ronan Harris my utmost respect for ensuring that the crowd had maximum fun at the concert. By quickly requesting that the audience turn off their camera flashes during the first song (and he rightly pointed out that people will get better pictures anyway with flashes off), it will not distract the band and it will also ensure that people don’t spend the majority of the concert in an iPhone coma. Then he simply instructed the audience to let go, dance our asses off and have fun. I am not kidding you when I tell you that I saw 100% audience participation at the show and as you know, I’ve seen my share of concerts! If only Ronan’s words could be posted at every venue, the overall concert going experience would be improved by leaps and bounds.
And once the concert got going, it was a 2 hour non-stop dance party! VNV Nation have a new album out called “Transnational” and the video you are about to see, “Primary” is a track from their excellent new record. If “try before you buy” is your thing, you can grab a free EP of remixes called “Crossing the Divide” for a limited time at this link (which will open in a new window). The video below captures a tiny glimpse of why you should always go see VNV Nation when they come to your city – first off Ronan Harris really gets the crowd engaged. He moves all over the stage, gives the front row opportunities to sing into the mic and he has funny anecdotes throughout the show. There’s also the amazing light show and visuals that will take you to another realm, and last and certainly not least, all of their songs are anthemic and designed to make you have a great time at their show, whether you are a VNV Nation die-hard or a newbie like me. Thanks to Ronan and company for an awesome night!
And now put all these words you’ve just read to the test by watching “Primary.” You won’t be disappointed!
Just press play.
See the set list and a photo of my brief chat with Ronan after the jump.
Sometimes you CAN judge a book by its cover. If the book in question is Matthew Hemerlein aka Lo-Fang, the ‘cover’ will be a musician that is so gorgeous that even if you end up hating his music (which I did not by the way, in fact, quite the opposite), you will have better visual candy than you would see from going to many art galleries. Needless to say, Lo-Fang’s show at Bowery Ballroom on April 27, 2014 was great! Before the night was over, Matthew played violin, cello, bass and guitar and I read on line that he also plays piano! His music is moody and mellow (think Bon Iver meets Gotye) and he is not afraid to rework a beloved classic song or two and make them his own. His take on Ginuwine’s “Pony” was really unexpected and great as was the song you are about to see – “You’re The One That I Want” from the movie Grease. He turned the Olivia Newton-John/John Travolta duet into a gorgeous ballad that is sure to go viral. Pop sensation Lorde enlisted Lo-Fang to open on her recent tour of the US and he performed on Good Morning America today. The future is bright for Lo-Fang and I am looking forward to hearing more great things! Thanks for a great show Matthew!
And now, here’s “You’re The One That I Want.” Please share this with your friends and help make Lo-Fang a star!
On April 17, 2014, New York experienced “Croll-chella” as Britain’s Dan Croll performed a sold out show at Bowery Ballroom. I’m really into his debut album “Sweet Disarray,” which fuses folk and electronic music with rock accents (think Two Door Cinema Club meets Paul Simon). Dan thanked the audience several times for purchasing his album instead of downloading it illegally, and he rewarded his fans by hanging out at the merch table after the show was over. Very classy! I’m looking forward to hearing more great things from Dan and you will be too after you press play on the below video for “In/Out” which will undoubtedly be stuck in your head for the rest of the day because it’s ridiculously catchy. I’m glad to provide that service for you! Great seeing you again Dan! Support Dan Croll’s music by visiting his official website.