Wisconsin singer/songwriter Justin Vernon of Bon Iver fame has kept busy for the past several years with not just Bon Iver but numerous other bands and collaborations. Of all the non-Bon Iver projects, the album that always stood out the most to me was Volcano Choir’s debut Unmap, an art-rock collective Vernon created with members of Wisconsin experimental rock band Collections of Colonies of Bees. The album was ambitious and more out-of-the-box then the Walden Pond/winter-cabin folk of Bon Iver, but was still centered in memorable pop hooks. The band’s followup, Repave, sees Volcano Choir reaching extraordinary heights, making atmospheric stadium rock that should be held up in the same regard as Vernon’s two dynamic Bon Iver records.
Continue reading “Volcano Choir Review: Repave”
Whether its Jim James, David Byrne, or Jack White, here at LxL we love musicians who dip their hands in many musical pots (or projects). Another artist who is having a banner year in diversifying himself is Justin Vernon, best known as the man behind Bon Iver, the cabin-in-the-woods indie folk act that became the Grammys’ Best New Artist just a couple years ago. He has already starred as the main hook singer on Kanye’s Yeezus, released a good-ole boys rock record with the Shouting Matches, and is set to release an album with his second best project (beside Bon Iver) in the experimental pop project Volcano Choir. So here are five choice cuts from his various projects (only 5 of his 10 projects) from the past few years.
Continue reading “LxListening: Justin Time”
Kanye West is the center of attention this month, between his poorly named child North West and his highly divisive album Yeezus. Yesterday, we gave you three very different opinions on Yeezus, and today we give you our ten favorite songs from Mr. West.
Continue reading “Top Ten Thursday: Yeezy’s Finest”
Well the last lineup of the years major festivals was announced this week, and boy is it a doozy. Years ago, Lollapalooza began as a traveling music festival and was a real grunge-fest hosting such headliners as Siouxsie and the Banshees, Nine Inch Nails, Jane’s Addiction (naturally because Perry Ferrell is in fact a founder of the festival) and Smashing Pumpkins. Lollapalooza in recent years has become somewhat of a stink-fest, hosting acts such headliners as Lady Gaga, Foo Fighters, and Coldplay. Nonetheless, this year they pulled it together and spat out quite a spectacular lineup. Let’s break it down:
Continue reading “Lollapalooza Lineup Breakdown/Festival Precap”
Give You The Ghost
Minneapolis four piece Polica got a good bit of publicity when Grammy Best New Artist winner Justin Vernon of Bon Iver told Rolling Stone in a recent interview that Polica was “the best band I’ve ever heard.” Sure, Vernon is a little biased considering he was in the band Gayngs with lead woman Channy Leneagh and album producer Ryan Olson and Polica tauts a heavy use of auto-tune (something Vernon himself is obsessed with), but nevertheless, the comment warrants giving the band a listen. Polica’s debut, Give You The Ghost, showcases a band not quite deserving of Vernon’s comments but still no doubt a promising new band with its own unique, lingering sound.
Continue reading “Polica Review: Give You the Ghost”