SHOW PREVIEW: Grouplove and Portugal. The Man
Indie rock labelmates Grouplove and Portugal. The Man, both under Atlantic Records, are making their way to Merriweather Post Pavillion this September. Now, in Grouplove’s case, that is rather impressive since, under a year ago, they played a set at U Street Music Hall. For those of you who don’t know, that’s a difference in capacity of almost 19,000 people! Both Grouplove and Portugal. The Man having been hitting festivals across the U.S. the last few summers and growing to play larger venues, such as Merriweather.
Even if you think you’ve never heard of Grouplove, you’ve probably heard Grouplove. Their song, “Tongue Tied,” among others, has been all over TV and other mediums, and is too catchy for you not to remember at least the hook. Lead vocalists Hannah Hooper and Christian Zucconi wow audiences with their remarkable dynamics that perfectly compliment each other, luring everyone to sing along. You’re sure to be enthralled by their vigorous, energetic live performance.
Portugal. The Man’s latest album, released last June, was produced by Danger Mouse, a Grammy-nominated producer who is a member of Broken Bells, was a past member of Gnarls Barkley, and has produced albums for Beck, Black Keys, and Gorillaz. They are led by their frontman, John Gourley, and there’s usually one thing that people notice about him right off the bat - he is almost always singing in falsetto. What really amazes people about this is how badass he is able to make falsetto sound. Overall, many of their songs are lots of fun and easy to dance to, especially in concert. But also, as they get down into the deeper tracks of any of their seven studio albums, the audience will be blown away by the amount of serious power they can bring.
Catch Grouplove and Portugal. The Man at Merriweather on September 12th.
CONTEST: Premiere Beard Competition
Check out those beards. Think you can compete, or are you a little too big for your britches? Let our followers decide! Show us what you got by sending us a photo of your beard to firstname.lastname@example.org OR post to our social networks tagging Merriweather Post Pavilion. We’ll collect them all and put them in a Facebook photo album, and the photo with the greatest number of likes and comments wins! You’ll win a pair of pavilion tickets to the show, and a badass prize package including a signed ZZ Top vinyl and a bottle of bourbon from a local DC distillery! Now, let the burliest beard win!
We will be accepting submissions through July 25. Winner will be selected August 1.
As those of you who attended already know, Thank You Fest rocked Merriweather Post Pavilion on June 26. For those of you who didn’t, these photos should be evidence enough. Don’t miss another chance to let the bass take you over at Mad Decent Block Party on August 1!
Thank you to house photographer Joseph Schaefer for capturing the evening—check out the rest of the photos here!
WE LOVE OUR PARTNERS: All Things Go
If you love all things music, go straight to our friendly neighborhood music blog, All Things Go. What began as a locally based entity has since expanded to New York City as well, with ties to Neon Gold Records and involvement in artist development, management, and promotion. Pretty cool, right? We love to see the little guys succeed. Keep up with them for the latest and greatest in all genres of music, as well as killer ticket giveaways from us! Right now you can snag a pair of lawn tickets to Thursday’s Queens of the Stone Age show at Merriweather Post Pavilion—don’t snooze on it!
Queens of the Stone Age will perform at Merriweather Post Pavilion on July 17.
WE LOVE OUR PARTNERS: Sound Garden
As much as we love to extol all of DC’s booming small businesses, sometimes we must tip our hats to our neighbors to the east in Baltimore, MD. Such is the case with Baltimore’s best new and used music store, Sound Garden. Why are they the best, you might ask? Well for one, you get the delightfully old-school experience of being able to buy and sell all of your CDs, DVDs, Blu-Rays, video games, and of course, vinyl. Beyond that, you can also peruse their selection of DJ equipment, as well as occasionally pop in for an onsite visit from your favorite artist. As much as we love the accessibility of digital music, we still laud the days when music was something tangible, something you could hold in your hands. As such, we’ve teamed up with Sound Garden to bring you the opportunity to win tickets to shows fit only for the true music lover. Right now you can win tickets to see Queens of the Stone Age at Merriweather Post Pavilion on July 17. Stay connected to Sound Garden via their email newsletter, social media, and store to be privy to more great giveaways! Get listening, folks!
Sound Garden is located at 1616 Thames Street, Baltimore, MD. To connect with Sound Garden, visit their website here.
Queens of the Stone Age will perform at Merriweather Post Pavilion on July 17.
SHOW PREVIEW: Beck
When I was a freshman in high school, the album Guero was released. I kept it in my Walkman everywhere I went. However, seeing that I didn’t speak Spanish, I had no idea how to pronounce the title. At all. Flash forward to when I’m hanging out at my ex’s friend’s house (whom I was only friends with because of the ex, and which actually turned out to be a plot to get me to play truth-or-dare and kiss her) and they’re all speaking Spanish for fun. Her, her friend, and her mother. I decided to say the only Spanish phrase I knew, from the song “Qué Onda Guero?”: “Qué puntas?” It was an odd night, but at least I can safely call Beck my first Spanish teacher.
Beck is a musician whose many styles are just as odd as that night. My experience that night sounds like it could’ve been encapsulated in a Midnite Vultures track. His vocal delivery ranges from folk dreamy to alt rock angst to rap. Whether you’re a fan of his chiller, folksier sound from such albums as Sea Change or the recent Morning Phase, or you’re more into the experimental je-ne-sais-quoi that is albums like Odelay and Guero, Beck is a musician much like Neil Young or David Bowie: one who can change his style but still be a master. And with an album as strong as Morning Phase is, we should definitely expect Beck to be on top form for his upcoming show at Merriweather.
Song I’m hoping for: “Debra.” This opus from Midnite Vultures is so fantastic, and it looks to be even more amazing live.
Beck will perform at Merriweather Post Pavilion on July 24.
SHOW PREVIEW: Route 29 Revue
Fellow folksy foot stompers, brass band junkies, singer songwriter fanatics, and alt rock lovers- it’s time to join together and get psyched for this year’s incredible Route 29 Revue lineup! Here are just some of the great acts you have to look forward to:
Trampled By Turtles: These Minnesotans have become veterans on the festival circuit, released multiple high charting albums, and along the way perfected easy-going bluegrass. With a similar vibe to Old Crow Medicine Show, dancing fervently to the tune of the Ryan Young’s fiddle is compulsory. They also have more mellow songs, such as their excellent cover of Pixies’ “Where is My Mind?” Trampled By Turtles have certainly frequented 9:30 Club before, but it will be a special treat to see them headline at Merriweather.
Trombone Shorty & Orleans Avenue: This band is all about the brass, just so much brass. The multi instrumental base is enhanced by some real soulful crooning vocals. The spirit of New Orleans jazz is alive and well in Trombone Shorty & Orleans Avenue and that feeling always resonates no matter what part of the country the show is taking place.
Iron & Wine: Believe me, Samuel Beam’s voice can soothe any and all distress. He’s been at it 10 years and hasn’t missed a beat yet. Beam has the ability to write serene original after original, as well as rendering the energetic Postal Service hit “Such Great Heights” into a chilled out number that could be considered a lullaby. If Nick Drake and Elliot Smith were still alive, they would have been friends with Samuel Beam and likely complimented his beard because it sure is on point.
Hurray for the Riff Raff: It’s hard not to be fascinated by the New Orleans stunner Alynda Lee Segarra and crew. With an americana folk foundation, Hurray for the Riff Raff has quietly but effectively grasped the attention of festival goers and esteemed music press alike since they started out 6 years ago. The songs often have a social activist edge and NPR claims that “Segarra’s morning after alto might be the least showy great voice to hit the national scene.” Take a listen to “The Body Electric” and imagine all the hip swaying and banjo strumming that happens when this song is performed live.
Route 29 Revue will take place at Merriweather Post Pavilion on September 13.