PLAYING ATLANTA: Sami Michelsen Dishes on Her Electronic-Pop Trio Reptile Room

Reptile Room - made up of Sami and Sean Michelsen and Bill Zimmerman - is one of Atlanta's signature bands. The electronic-pop trio is known for their thrilling, psychedelic visuals, intoxicating music, and powerful performances on the best stages throughout the city, so when I got the chance to sit down with Sami in the [...]

By |2019-03-14T17:09:41-04:00March 14th, 2019|COLUMNS, Playing Atlanta|

ONLY NOISE: A Case of SXSW – James Blake Instigated My Sneaky Crimes in a Changing Austin

All images courtesy Katie Wojciechowski. ONLY NOISE explores music fandom with poignant personal essays that examine the ways we’re shaped by our chosen soundtrack. This week, Katie Wojciechowski relives the SXSW she spent sneaking around to see James Blake in 2011, before she - and her hometown of Austin - underwent some major [...]

By |2019-03-14T15:12:18-04:00March 14th, 2019|COLUMNS, Only Noise|

PLAYING DETROIT: Tammy Lakkis Fuses Songwriter and DJ Sensibilities on Debut Single

This week, Detroit-based producer, songwriter and DJ Tammy Lakkis released her debut single, “This is How It Goes,” a mesmerizing meditation on the cyclical nature of life. Lakkis fuses her background in more traditional songwriting and her love affair with Detroit’s electronic music scene, honing her original demo with the help of Assemble Sound resident [...]

By |2019-03-13T16:51:01-04:00March 13th, 2019|COLUMNS, Playing Detroit, Uncategorized|

PLAYING CINCY: Tori Helene Learns to Heal on EP Delusional

Tori Helene, Cincinnati's latest rising voice in the hip hop and R&B scene, recently dropped her debut EP, Delusional. The Natown-produced project shows growth and a different creative direction for Helene, who released two singles last year - the sensual "Straight F***in" and heated "Judas." The mood shifts quite a bit to introspection, pain, and healing [...]

By |2019-03-12T12:49:13-04:00March 12th, 2019|COLUMNS, Playing Cincinnati|

PLAYING SEATTLE: Guitarist and songwriter Ings Preps New LP and SXSW Shows

As you wander from Cafe Racer to SoDo punk venue to University District house show, Ings, a contemplative guitarist and songwriter with a subtle touch on the guitar, is bound to be somewhere in the mix—likely (and hopefully) sharing her slow-simmering pop songs from behind her signature yellow glasses. With two mellow-yet-poignant EPs under her [...]

By |2019-03-08T18:58:15-04:00March 8th, 2019|COLUMNS, Playing Seattle|

ONLY NOISE: To All the Boys I Loved Before Who Loved Jeff Rosenstock

ONLY NOISE explores music fandom with poignant personal essays that examine the ways we’re shaped by our chosen soundtrack. This week, Taylor Ysteboe connects past and present relationships with the earnest anthems of DIY icon Jeff Rosenstock. On a sticky afternoon in June – the summer after my first semester of college – Aden and [...]

By |2019-03-07T15:45:29-04:00March 7th, 2019|COLUMNS, Only Noise|

PLAYING ATLANTA: Sister Moon Talks Songwriting, Star Trek, and Bacon Chips

Ashley Rivera, the frontwoman and creative force behind Atanta's Southern gothic-blues group, Sister Moon, weaves a dark mystique throughout her music, eerie melodies set against a heavy sonic landscape. It's Southern gothic at its finest: a crumbling mansion in the light of a full moon, Spanish moss swaying like ghosts from the limbs of a [...]

By |2019-03-06T13:28:22-04:00March 6th, 2019|COLUMNS, Playing Atlanta|

PLAYING DETROIT: Mayaeni Makes It Out of the “Quicksand”

Call it the Lady Gaga effect: a promising young artist is “discovered,” signed to a label, and goes on to achieve viral success, leaving audiences and artists alike set on the Cinderella story of being picked up and swept away by music industry magic. This romanticized version of making it big is, unfortunately, a statistically [...]

By |2019-03-04T16:37:43-04:00March 6th, 2019|COLUMNS, Playing Detroit|

PLAYING CINCY: Shake It Records Celebrates 20th Anniversary

Founded in 1979 by Jess Hirbe and Daryl Kalmus, Shake It Records began as a record label, bolstering Cincinnati acts like rock group The Customs. Brothers Darren and Jim Blase acquired the label in the '90s and set up shop in Northside as a record store in 1999. While still a thriving record label representing [...]

By |2019-03-04T16:16:07-04:00March 5th, 2019|COLUMNS, Playing Cincinnati|

HIGH NOTES: How to Return to Your Life After a Wild Festival Weekend

A weekend of partying at a music festival may leave you feeling like the human equivalent of these overflowing Glastonbury trash cans. Most people don’t spend music festivals worrying about how they’ll feel after all the shouting, head-banging, and (if you're into that sort of thing) drug use is over. That’s something you [...]

By |2019-03-19T13:39:13-04:00March 4th, 2019|COLUMNS, High Notes, Monthly Mondays|

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