Wednesday, April 8, 2015

TrollPhace w/ SQUNTO, Darko, 4LMNTZ & Andrew Garcia

TrollPhace w/ SQUNTO, Darko, 4LMNTZ & Andrew Garcia
 The Middle East Downstairs April 4th, 2015

Saturday night was a hot and heavy evening full of bass in your face, courtesy of Untame Nightlife. Headlining the show was dubstep giant TrollPhace with opening sets from talented local Boston area artists SQUNTO, Darko, 4LMNTZ & Andrew Garcia. Grimy, slimy and full of all sorts of wubs and wiggles, The Middle East Downstairs got rocked Saturday night.

Kicking off the beats for the evening was Danvers, MA native Andrew Garcia. A DJ on the rise with numerous shows under his belt this year already, Andrew Garcia is building his repertoire up.

4LMNTZ, started in 2008 is Justin Loranger’s hard electro project. Homegrown north of Boston in Wilmington, MA, 4LMNTZ’s death-core electro screamed through the venue. His artistic approach is heavily influenced by euro-house, and his musical presentation is the cross bread of heavy metal, devilish dubstep and dirty euro dance beats. 4LMNTZ is definitely a DJ to thrash ya wild hair to.

Chelmsford, MA beat maker Darko took the stage next. Being the lightest dub artist of the evening lineup, Darko refreshed the rowdy crowd with his booty shakin’ deep house beats. Smooth ridden melodies with tasty offbeat drops, Darko’s ability to play off the emotion of the crowd ensures a solid set delivery every damn time. With recent show openings for massive artists like drum and bass duo EOTO and deep house/trap group TORRO TORRO, Darko’s rise as a producer/DJ is constantly amplifying.

Setting everyone up for the much-anticipated set by TrollPhace, SQUNTO blasted his deep sound into the Middle East Downstairs. SQUNTO has grown out of Holliston, MA and has developed into a heavy hitting dupstep artist, with backing by dub top dogs Excision, Trampa and more. Shrilling, chilling and undeniably thrilling, SQUNTO’s behemoth of a set rattled the crowd silly. Catch SQUNTO opening for Downlink this Thursday April 8th at the Middle East Downstairs.

Headlining the evening of devilish delight was TrollPhace. Coming to the east coast all the way from sunny LA, TrollPhace gave the hyped crowd everything they were waiting for. Opening a mosh pit up front for the more daring of the evening, everyone let it all go loose for TrollPhace. With drops like that of Helicopter Showdown and slice n dice shredding of Excision’s heaviest, TrollPhace’s electrifying tracks captivated the demons of the evening. About to head off to Europe for his France tour, TrollPhace continues to spread his heat for the globe to enjoy.

Keep It Funky

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Treehouse Live w/ DJ Set From Darko

Treehouse Live w/ DJ set from Darko || Lilypad April 3rd 2015

This past Friday, April 3rd, Boston’s homebred wizards of Treehouse Live took over the small, living room inspired venue The Lilypad located in Inman Square, Cambridge. Treehouse Live took the stage with their first set from 10-11, intermission with a DJ set by bass beast Darko, and T.H. closed the evening with their final set 12-1. With a venue capacity of approximately 75 people, the night was guaranteed to be an intimate one filled with great music and great company.

Producer/DJ Darko was the intermission entertainment of the evening, rounding out the jam/funk feel with some down tempo bass music. His well-crafted sounds elevate his music to another level. With his home-cooked beats Darko raises the bar and challenges DJ’s who simply push buttons. Frequently playing across Boston, Darko is a force to be reckoned with and a must to catch spinning on deck.

Treehouse Live is a gentle blend of Alex Moran on keys/synth, Dalton Markrush holdin’ it down on bass, Hamilton Kibbe on guitar and Ryan Slobin on drums. With evident influences from jam band greats Lotus, Dopapod and Phish, Treehouse Live’s sound is a tasty treat with a funky beat. They truly are a funk-tronica mix. What I loved most about the group is their charisma playing together. Nothing makes a band more impressive than their ability to play WITH each other, not just next to each other. Their individual skillsets compliment each other while creating a well-balanced and tasteful blanket of sounds. With a bright future ahead of them, I wish Treehouse Live all the best and cannot wait until their next show!
Treehouse Live

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Lotus w/ Moon Hooch

Lotus & Moon Hooch || House of Blues Boston January 30th 2015

Lotus w/ Moon Hooch
           Moon Hooch opened for Lotus, a three-piece group from Brooklyn, New York. Band consists of drums and two saxophone players. The group got their start attending The New School for Jazz and Contemporary Music as well as busking in the NYC subway stations. The group possesses a New Orleans, honky tonk style, full of electric energy and gets the party started. Light, groovy and festive, Moon Hooch was a fun opener for Lotus.

            Lotus, formed in 1999 in Indiana (now based out of Philadelphia, PA and Boulder, CO) is a five piece jam-electronica band. Signed to SCI Fidelity Records, Lotus is right at home in the jam band festival scene, alongside bands like The Disco Biscuits, The String Cheese Incident and EOTO. Lotus is such a solid group in so many aspects, they never disappoint. Five piece group, including drums, bass, two guitarists and keys, jam trance is the name of their game. Having seen them over five times now, the boys always bring the heat. Futuristic live band funk, ethereal entrances, and a fat beat to always back them up, Lotus takes you on a journey throughout the entire performance. Mainly instrumental with occasional harmonized chants from the band, Lotus’s songs glide into one another, creating a constant wave of change. As usual the group performed two long sets, the second set being the better of the two.

Keep it funky

Monday, December 1, 2014

Special Feature || Let's Talk About TAUK

Let's Talk About TAUK

TAUK @ Brighton Music Hall, Boston MA 9.10.14
Grown out of Oyster Bay, New York, this four piece band of brothers are on the rise, and it’s only time till you catch them live. With Isaac Teel lockin’ down drum set, Alric “A.C.” Carter slingin’ keys, Charlie Dolan phunkin’ down the bass line, and Matt Jalbert stirrin’ it all up on guitar, the boys bring the beat. Having just released their third studio album, Collisions, this past July, and pairing up tours with some of the most legendary funk and jam groups on the scene today, TAUK is on the run to take over, and are already doing so.

I recently had the special opportunity to interview TAUK around the time of their last Boston show when they opened for The New Mastersound’s at Brighton Music Hall this past September. Discussing their new album, “Collisions”, artistic viewpoints, inspirations and more, let’s take a peek at what the boys had to say:

TAUK's Latest Album: Collisions (Released July 2014)

MB: Ya’ll just dropped a fresh new album, titled Collisions, this year working alongside producer, Robert Carranza, who’s worked with artists like Jack Johnson and Mars Volta and more. How was your experience working with him on the album? What direction has this album brought you all musically in compared to previous released albums? Who else would you like to work alongside within the future if given the right opportunity?

MJ: We've worked with Robert a lot in the past and he's become a big part of our band. It's rare to find somebody who you connect with so well on your music so our relationship with him helps our band grow a lot. He really knows our music and how to capture it in the best way. Collisions is definitely the next step for us. We've taken a lot of what we were doing in the past and focused it in. For me, this album is the best representation of what we do in a live setting that we've put out so far, but also with a few extra touches that we were able to add through the studio.

MB: Musicians relationships with music are constantly evolving, being influenced, challenged and compromised. Complex but addictive, everyone’s journey takes unexpected turns. Have you as a group taken any spontaneous unseen turns? How do you approach and handle these changes?

AC: Currently the biggest turn we've taken is the amount of shows we've added to our tour schedule. We're planning to finish this year having played approximately 175 shows so days at home are few and far between. This has been an adjustment for us but we couldn't be more excited as we continue to figure out the best way to tour. Playing shows and traveling is what we signed up for.

MB: Relationships within the band can be half the challenge of achieving success. Do you guys make sure of a healthy band flow? If so how do you approach this part of being a band? 

AC: One of the greatest things about being in this band is there's no egos. We understand what it takes to achieve our goals within this band and realized a long time ago that bickering and fighting is simply distracting. Having a healthy dynamic between people you see over 200 days a year is a must. Keep honest and have patience with each other!

MB: Ya’ll have been guest performing and collaborating with a wide selection of talented artists over the past few years. Who are some of your favorite artists you’ve paired up with? Artists you wish to work with in the future?

AC: Karl Denson has sat in with us on more than a few occasions, which was simply awesome. It’s humbling to have someone who we respect and is established in our scene want play music with us. We've had other fantastic collaborations/sit-ins with Craig Brodhead (Turkuaz), Ron Holloway (Gov't Mule), Rob Compa (Dopapod), Corey Henry (Snarky Puppy), and Robert Randolph. In the future we'd love link up with Flying Lotus, Lettuce, Umphrey's McGee, and Derek Trucks to name a few.

MB: Any new upcoming bands in the scene that you guys admire currently?

AC: There’s a few so I'll just list them: Snarky Puppy, Deaf Scene, The Nth Power, Consider The Source.

MB: Almost done: The music industry has been rapidly evolving over the past several decades. How do you feel about the current state of the industry? Anything you hope will change in the future? 

MJ: From what we can tell, the industry looks like its been shaken up and will continue to change. It's a very interesting time to be involved with music because right now there's no one right way of doing things. The door is open for bands to try different things. Different ways of promoting themselves or releasing their music. We're always thinking of ways to get the word out about the band and realize that things may never stop changing. You just have to stay on your toes and constantly be looking out for the new thing.

MB: Last question: Each of you, you’re dirty pleasure artist/band to listen to! 
Isaac- Anita Baker 
Matt- Spin Doctors
Charlie- Dio
AC- Boyz II Men

Full of fire and a bright future ahead of them, TAUK stands out as one of the grooviest upcoming bands in the funk scene today. With three studio albums under the belt and more to come, TAUK is walking into the prime of their career. Currently on tour with Dopapod, TAUK continues to pair up with jam and funk greats. Including upcoming shows with Dopapod, The Disco Biscuits, Umphrey’s McGee and Soule Monde, TAUK is staking down their ground.

TAUK was recently named New York’s Best Jam Band of 2014 by The Village Voice.

Upcoming Shows:
December 4th – 14th:  Touring w/ Dopapod (East Coast)
December 30th:  Opening for The Disco Biscuits @ Best Buy Theater (NYC)
January 29th- February 21st:  Touring w/ Umphrey’s McGee (East Coast)

Check TAUK Out & Their New Album “Collisions”:

Keep it funky!

Monday, November 24, 2014

The Motet || The Heavy Pets

The Motet || The Heavy Pets
Brighton Music Hall || November 22nd, 2014

            November is traditionally a slow month for shows, the change in season and the looming holidays usually tighten the show goers ticket spending. Yet as we groove fiends are always thankful for, funk shall always prevail, regardless to the time of year. This past Saturday evening, The Motet and The Heavy Pets tore up their sold out show at Brighton Music Hall’s late night set, filling me up with some holiday spirit. Special thanks to the hard-working hands at Crossroads Presents for bringing this line up to us!

            I truly enjoyed the pairing of The Heavy Pets opening for The Motet. Having seen both of these groups previously, I was pleased to see them team up together. Smooth and saucy, The Heavy Pets tickled everyone’s bones in the right direction. This five-piece group of groove comes from the far, far land of South Florida and brought up some sunshine to share with us here in frigid Boston. Composed of drums, bass, keys, two guitars, and multiple vocal lines, The Heavy Pets stay true to their name with a heavy backbeat. Presenting a locked in feel for the whole set, The Heavy Pets drizzled hints of reggae, soul, funk and rock lines all over the stage. Cool and collected yet packing the funk punch, The Heavy Pets were the perfect kick off for the evening. My only criticism is that they had a longer set!

(The Heavy Pets)

            Bringing down the house were hot dance cats of The Motet. From Denver Colorado, this seven-piece band of wonder (drums, bass, guitar, keys, trumpet, tenor sax, percussion and vocals) truly brought the fire late Saturday night. From beginning to end, their entire set was sassy and on point. The special dose of sass Saturday night came from The Motet’s vocalist and percussionist Jans Ingber. Boy must have eaten his Wheaties that morning because his energy was iridescent! Not to mention the fat beats he had to work with, The Motet’s sharp and deep-pocketed sound can carry any soul away to funky town.

(The Motet)

            A warm and delicious evening, both The Heavy Pets and The Motet put on a well played sold out show. These boys are constantly circulating the funk circuit- be sure to catch these two groups in action!

Get Familiar, Get Funky: