Check out the TikTok I made that this post is based on.
Toro Y Moi – 8/10
This concert was a great one. This was early enough that he was still performing songs from Causers of This. He is a talented artist with great energy live and I’d definitely recommend going to one of his shows (after COVID).
TV Girl – 4/10
I enjoy listening to TV Girl occasionally, but honestly most of their discography is monotone and gets dull after a few listens, so the concert was not one of my favorites. I also had an opportunity to chat with the band after the show but they seemed disinterested.
Halsey – 3/10
I saw Halsey during some downtime at a music festival a few years ago. It was before her “Closer” debut when she was less famous in the music industry, though she already had a great stage presence. I am not a pop fan so it wasn’t the best concert, plus it was outdoors and there were bees everywhere.
The Joy Formidable – 7/10
I loved “The Big Roar” in middle school and high school so it was definitely exciting to see the album performed live. These musicians are really talented and the concert was a wholesome one. I recommend giving the album a listen if you have the chance.
FIDLAR – 9/10
FIDLAR was one of my favorite bands when I was in high school, so it was amazing to see them live. The energy was great, the performance they gave was incredible, and it was one of the best concerts I’ve ever been to. I would love to see them live again.
Sangeet Sagaar is a South Asian A Capella competition held at NC State annually. The competition is hosted by Delta Sigma Iota, Inc. (the only South Asian interest fraternity at NC state) and all proceeds from the event benefit the charity Child Rights and You America.
I attended Sangeet Sagaar this past weekend and the experience was unlike any other performance I’ve seen at State. This year, Sangeet Sagaar hosted six different competing teams and featured special performances by UNC Samaa and WDN Dance Team. Sangeet Sagaar is such a unique event because every competing team has mesmerizing choreography and they perform a fusion of Western and South Asian traditional and popular vocals. Each team filled the theatre with beautiful melodies and kept the audience enthralled throughout the entire show.
This year, Hum A Capella from University of Texas won for the second year in a row. This team beautifully encompassed South Asian a capella with their well-practiced choreography, powerhouse vocals, and exceptional mix of South Asian- and Western-influenced singing.
I would recommend anyone in the Triangle area to attend next year’s Sangeet Sagaar. It is truly an experience worth having, especially if you’ve never seen an a capella competition before. You can view their Facebook here and their website here.
Scott Avett, co-founder of The Avett Brothers, is currently featured at the North Carolina Museum of Art for his exhibition, INVISIBLE. Although Avett is most widely known for his contributions to the band that he shares with his brother, Seth; he has gained prominence in the visual art community as well. Many fans of The Avett Brothers recognize his signature relief print artwork which has been featured many times on album covers and promotional products.
The Avett Brothers is a folk rock band which originated in Concord, North Carolina in the early 2000s. The band has gained national recognition including receiving three Grammy nominations and three awards from the Americana Music Association. Rooted in traditional bluegrass and folk music found in western North Carolina, they also are clearly influenced by rock & roll.
I visited Scott Avett’s exhibition, INVISIBLE last weekend. His artistic talent is evident and the exhibit focuses primarily on his work with relief printing. INVISIBLE includes pieces of artwork found on Avett Brothers albums and posters from their shows but also showcases portraiture of Avett himself and other members of the Avett family. Both his art and the discography of the band reflect universal ideas like spirituality, love, and loss in a beautiful way.
One room of the exhibit includes a display of the music video to Head Full of Doubt/Road Full of Promise, a song released in 2009. The song itself has been impactful to my life, its lyrics are motivational and reflect on the temporary nature of the world around us. The music video had a profound emotional impact on me, which is why I find the artistry behind the video so interesting. The artist, Ryan Mitcham, spliced together a compilation of over 2,600 images creating an animation from the canvas he physically painted. The music video depicts the rise and decline of an urban area, and its significance is indescribable. I highly recommend checking it out.
Tickets for the exhibition are paired with the Mexican Modernism exhibit at the NCMA. The limited-time exhibition will close February 2nd.
Welcome to the second post of the “You take a metal head to a hip-hop/rap show,” and in this edition I went to see the man himself, Snoop D O double G!!!! I have always been a fan of Uncle Snoop. Growing up, my mom and dad would play Snoop Dogg. My dad is a huge gangster rap fan, and Snoop Dogg is his favorite! He said that the first time he heard Snoop was on Dr. Dre’s The Chronic and heard him in F**k wit Dre Day when Snoop started off with “bow wow wow yippie yo yippie yay doggy dog in the m*****f****** houseeeeee” and has loved him ever since. My mom has also always been a fan of Snoop Dogg and I remember she always had his song 1800 playing.
This was my first time seeing Snoop Dogg and I was really excited!! When we got to the Ritz, there weren’t many people there (we got there at doors); we got there early so we could get a good spot to see the man himself! We were standing in front of the sound booth and we had a perfect view of the stage. There were a handful of rappers that opened up the show and they were really good! One of the acts walks by my mom and we said “hey” to them and they gave us a hug. The crowd didn’t get into the opening acts but as soon and Uncle Snoop hit the stage, people started rocking!
I was thrilled when Snoop Dogg hit the stage. He came out rapping and did his little gangster dance (my dad can do the swaying side to side dance really well). He also had dancers on stage dancing behind him. But it gets better, Snoop had two stripper poles on stage and had strippers dancing on the poles while he played. What an O.G. move. Me and my mom danced all night, and we ran into some family friends that hung out with us during the show!
Although Snoop Dogg didn’t play my favorite song, 1800, he did play some other songs that I really liked, such as Drop It Like It’s Hot, I Wanna Rock, Gin N’ Juice, and Nuthin’ but a G thang. Overall, it was a great show and a perfect way to end 2019. I would totally go see Snoop Dogg again!
A week or so ago, my mom and I went to see Tool! My mom has seen Tool many times, but this was my first time seeing them live. I was supposed to see them at Epiceneter earlier this year, but due to tornado warnings, they canceled the rest of the festival for that day. So this was my redemption, my second chance to see Tool and my mom bought tickets before they were sold out.
I grew up listening to Tool. My mom would play songs like Sober, The Pot, and Schism all the time when I was growing up, and I quickly started to love these songs. Tool is a band that I can put on and just relax. They have a very particular sound that no other band has and their vibe just puts the listener into a different mindset.
When we got to PNC Arena, there were signs everywhere that stated that we were not allowed to take any pictures or videos during the show. I have never seen this before, and when doing some quick research, the rule was legit. Tool didn’t want anyone with their phones out because they wanted them to enjoy the experience of the show. If you were caught with your phone out, you would be kicked out of the arena. I thought this rule was wack because we spent so much money to see this band and then you say we will be kicked out for having our phones out? Let people enjoy the concert how they want to enjoy it. If it is behind a cell phone then so what? You already got our money for the show so why does it matter? Now, did The Saw take any videos of Tool? That is something that your Master Butcher is going to keep to herself. (:
The opening band that kicked off the show was Killing Joke. I have never heard of this band before until I saw them play at the show. The band was good, but they didn’t have much of a stage show. I didn’t really know what was going on to be honest. Their singer would do these weird little dances but mainly just stood in the middle of the stage the entire time. Their sound throughout the arena was really good! You could hear them clearly and perfectly.
Tool was up next and I was really excited to see them, finally! They had one of the best light shows that I have ever seen. It was so trippy and mesmerizing. They had this thin curtain around the stage and their light show would bounce off the curtain to make some sort of design, it was awesome to watch and the light show and the artistry fit the vibe of the music really well! I didn’t know a lot of the songs that Tool played, but they were all really good! The band sounded awesome and Maynard’s voice is still strong and loud. He sounded amazing! The only song I knew that they played was Schism. They didn’t play The Pot OR Sober!!! Can you believe that? They had some sort of an intermission before their encore which I thought was pretty weird because we all just sat there for about 5 minutes until some of the band members came out and spent about 5 more minutes creating noise.
Overall, I am so happy that I finally got to see Tool and I got to see them with my mom! I also got a Tool shirt and I am surprised that I got the last shirt in my size. I thought they would sell out because there were so many people in line to get merch, it was insane.
Have you seen Tool live? What is your faveorite Tool song?
Okay, I’m not gonna lie, when I saw this lineup, I screamed. You have Left Behind, Traitors, Spite, The Acacia Strain, AND Chelsea Grin all on one bill?? ICONIC. This show sold out the day of the show and the Blind Tiger was packed with people. I went to this show with two of my friends: Sarah, who I trained as a metal DJ at WKNC, she is a real good friend of mine and all we do is listen to metal and send each other metal memes. I love it. I also took my friend Andrew who works at WKNC with me. Andrew does not listen to metal on a regular basis, but when I play it at the station, he really likes what he hears, and we are always having discussions about the evolution of music. When I told him about this show, he was down to go and he ended up having a great time!! I am close to converting him into a metalhead!
When we got to the show, the first band, Left Behind, was already playing (we got stuck in traffic, smh). But where we were in line, you could hear the band clearly and they were jamming! I was dancing in line and having a good time. The line was so long that by the time we got into the venue, Left Behind was finishing. I hate that I didn’t get to see them, but I bought a bomb ass hoodie from them so it is okay.
The next band that came on was Traitors and I have seen them a handful of times and they never disappoint me. Their singer, Tyler, has some great vocals that always leaves me in awe. He is really good at hyping the crowd up because he always says, “is that all you got Greensboro? Destroy this s***!” He was very entertaining to watch. Their light show was great, and the crowd really got into them, from what I saw. We were shoulder to shoulder in that venue due to it being a sold out show. Sarah described Traitors as a band that every song is just a big ass breakdown and I totally agree. Love it.
Spite came on next, and I love Spite. Their energy on their albums, and live, is top notch and can’t be beat. Every time I listen to them, I get this burst of energy and I feel unstoppable. Darius, their singer, is one of the best front men I have seen. Not only does he have insanely great vocals, but his stage presence is awesome. He comes on stage yelling and running around and it immediately gets the crowd hyped. When he sings, he will wiggle his eyebrows and make these funny faces; he is simply, just fun to watch. They played some of my favorite songs, mainly, Kill or Be Killed. Andrew was really digging this band, and he actually got in the mosh pit for Spite!!!! He was jamming hard.
The Acacia Strain came on and a lot of people were looking forward to seeing them. They are one of the bands that has a lot of respect in the scene and have a huge following. Their singer thanked all of us for being there at the show and told us to have a good time. Their sound was phenomenal live and the singer’s voice was perfect. His low growls were impressive. But to me and my friends that I went to the show with, we felt that The Acacia Strain could not follow Spite. Spite kicked our asses!!! When we sat outside, we could still hear the band and from what I heard, they put on a great show.
And now the band I have been waiting for, Chelsea Grin. I have seen Chelsea Grin various times but I have only seen them twice with their new singer, Tom. Tom used to be the singer for Lorna Shore, but then came to sing with Chelsea Grin. I love his voice and he really brings more energy to the band. The last time I saw Chelsea Grin was a few years ago at the Blind Tiger and I was in awe. When they played Across The Earth, their melodies in the beginning with their light show is something that I will never forget. I got chills just watching it. The first song that they came out with when I saw them recently was Recreant, which is easily one of their best songs. I lost my mind when they started off with this song. They instantly brought the energy and the crowd went wild. When Recreant began playing, I crowd surfed up to the stage and their bass player helped me up on stage!! How nice!!! I then stage dove, crowd surfed back to the stage, and stage dove again. It was awesome. They played some killers songs, like Playing With Fire, My Damnation, and Dead Rose. Their light show was amazing, and their overall sound was really, really good. Definitely a band you all need to see live. (pic here)
2019 was a great year for music. To start off a series of ‘best of musical things 2019 edition’ I figured I’d look back at some of my favorite concerts I went to this year. Thanks to WKNC this year has been one of my best for concert attendance. These are my top three shows of the year.
Smallpools at Motorco Music Hall
This show blew me away. The band was so high energy and I had the best front row seat. I started listening to Smallpools when I first came to college and I doubled my listening when I got the tickets to this show, they’re currently my number one artist on Spotify. Needless to say the show left a great impression and has only made my love for the band and their music even stronger. Hearing ‘Dreaming’ and ‘Over & Over’ live were two of my musical highlights of the year. I was hit with a wave of nostalgia and overcome with a joy that I still have when I look back on this night.
Joy Again at Kings
I highly recommend everyone see a band they love alone at least once, it’s such an experience. Joy Again has a lot of amazing songs so I was very excited to see the band, especially because it was the first concert I ever went to on my own. Their vocals live were insanely good, everything they did was insanely good. Much like Smallpools I got a nice front row seat (something that I really love about these smaller venues), which gave the show a really intimate feeling. The outro was amazing and hearing ‘Winter Snakes’ and ‘Looking out For You’ Live was unforgettable.
Twenty One Pilots at PNC Arena
This show blew my mind, again. I’ve seen the band live before, with the same person, and this show just brought on a wave of nostalgia and happiness that I can hardly describe. My best friend and I saw Twenty One Pilots for the first time the summer before we started college (that’s a whole wild story in itself) and since this summer was the summer before our senior year of college it just felt poetic, somehow made everything feel even more magical. I am not exaggerating when I say that Twenty One Pilots has put on two of the best concerts I’ve ever been to. Everything always feels so authentic and their performance skills are A1. Going to one of their shows is truly an unforgettable experience. I’ve been listening to the band since Vessel was the newest album and I have to say, this band does not disappoint.
Yesterday I made a quick trip down to Cat’s Cradle to catch the Turnover and Men I Trust show. Despite the cold and the rain, there was a huge turnout!
The opener was an artist named Renata Zeigeur. Having heard nothing by her prior, her set proved to be the unexpected highlight of my night. As her record label writes, her music was “both wonderfully dreamy and strange”. One song especially stood out to me, a new single called “Whack-A-Mole”. As a daytime DJ for the station, it would’ve fit right into one of my sets. Overall her set was a phenomenal, and I plan on introducing her music into the WKNC daytime rotation.
Next up was Men I Trust. I was super excited to see them live for the very first time. I actually found out about them while listening to WKNC…Tailwhip came on the radio in my car, and ever since then I’ve been a fan. With the recent release of their 2019 album, Oncle Jazz, I knew we’d be in for a treat getting to hear lots of new music. My favorite song they performed was “All Night” off of Oncle Jazz. They were amazing live, and I hope I can see them again some time soon.
Finally, the main act. I had seen Turnover at Cat’s Cradle a few years ago, but that didn’t make me any less excited to see them again. They opened the show with “Still in Motion” from their new album Altogether. Although people sing along with every song, at every show, (this one included), the crowd goes insane when they play songs from their older albums. I survived the mosh pit for “New Scream” another year. I was happy because they also played “Pure Devotion”, one of my favorite songs off their 2017 album, Good Nature. I always think it’s funny how the crowd can go from moshing to one song to standing completely still for the next one, and the whole time the members of the band stay completely chill and act as if nothing changed.
This concert had quite the lineup, and I’m glad I was able to go! Every act was great, and if you haven’t heard any of their music you should definitely check all the artists out. If you’re too lazy to look them up yourself, don’t worry, because I’ll be playing them all on WKNC daytime hours.
This past Sunday I got to go to see the band Omni at Kings and it was a pretty amazing show. I (thought) I first heard the band a couple of weeks ago while I was at work. I’m the daytime music director here at WKNC so I get albums to listen to pretty frequently, but I definitely remember first getting their new album and listening to it. I immediately figured it would end up on air from the first listen because I really enjoyed it (and from what I saw online under their music video a lot of people feel that way too). The band is from Atlanta Georgia and they seem like really cool guys. After the show I spoke to the lead singer, just to tell him that I really liked his album, and he was super nice and chill about it all. Looking online they are categorized as ‘Alternative Indie’ and ‘Rock’. That’s pretty accurate, but there’s also a pretty classic and kind of old school style about them that really made them stand out to me. My favorite tracks off of the new record are ‘Sincerely Yours’ and ‘Skeleton Key’.
To get back to an earlier point, I thought this was my first time hearing the band but when listening to my Ultimate Indie playlist I realized I had their song ‘Wire’ in there. That track is amazing and I definitely recommend listening to it if you haven’t heard it yet. The show was also amazing and made me like the band and new album even more. The opening acts were Blacker Server and Moonland and they really helped set up the scene, it was quite the show the entire time and I’m really glad I was able to go.
October 24, 2019 was the day that Obituary returned to Raleigh! And you already know that ya girl was there to see those rednecks from Tampa (F***en) Florida! With them on this tour was (the not so redneck) Abbath; along with Midnight, Devil Master, and one of our Local Butchers, False Prophet.
Now, I’ve got to admit, I missed False Prophet (which really sucks because I really like them). They played “at doors,” which were at 6:00, and I had class until 5:45. I made it in to see Devil Master, who put on a straight-up, in your face, no nonsense set. The whole band was in costume, complete with a rhythm guitarist Dracula, and a keyboardist in a bad-ass hooded robe! Other than the lead guitarist having to tune after every song, the band pounded through their set list without hesitation. They came, they played, they kicked ass! BTW, I’m still not sure whether the keyboardist was real or some type of machine, but he never raised his head, never came out of role, and I never even saw him leave the stage when their set was over. He just… disappeared.
Midnight was a three-piece band full of energy and sound! The three – guitarist, bassist and singer, and drummer – were all hooded with black masks over their faces. I’m telling you right now, these guys lit it up! The crowd came to life for Midnight, and the band responded to that energy. They were constantly on the move, interacting with the crowd, and running the full stage. Midnight had a great set that night! I’d like to see them again!
So, Abbath was up next. Hailing from Norway and steeped in the Black Metal genre, I was excited to see what was to come. For those of you who don’t know, the singer/guitarist (“Abbath Doom Occulta”) is one of the founders of the legendary band, Immortal. They pretty-much invented Black Metal. His first love was KISS, and you can see that influence in his stage presence and performance. If you can imagine, he is like a darker, more evil Gene Simmons (the Demon), spit straight out of the depths of Hell. Abbath left Immortal and formed this band of the same name in 2015. And they are taking some serious strides! What. An. Awesome. Show!! The powerful presence of Abbath, himself, was matched by drummer, Ukri Suvilehto. His playing and interaction with the crowd (from behind the kit) was hypnotizing. The walls, floor, and (I’m sure) ceiling reverberated his double base drums! They didn’t leave behind the other stringed instruments, either. The band, Abbath, operated like a well oiled machine. The light show and smoke machine added to the dreaded ambiance of this hellish display. They played for well over an hour. It was a blistering beating of crushing riffs and blast beats, over staggering double base and the agonized screech of Abbath’s vocals. It was exquisite!! When it was over, all I could think was, “No one but Obituary could follow that. They’d better bring it!”
Second picture taken by Courtney Breen.
And bring it they did! If you’ve never seen Obituary their show begins with piped-in country music, which is overtaken by the crunching riffs of the song, Redneck Stomp, a groovy instrumental. When they hit the stage, they were energized and ready to go. Obituary has been around so long (late 80’s, and earlier as Xecutioner) that their entire stage show is pretty-much patented! Trevor (rhythm guitar) holds the trademark for riff master/hair slinging headbanger. Kenny (lead guitar) is in charge of harmony and spooky/eerie wails, shrieks, and monster leads. Terry (bass) is a large and ominous presence, always middle/stage left; quiet, other than his bruising bass beatings. Donald (drums), in my opinion, invented Death Metal drumming. He is obviously ADHD (and I’ve met him, so…) and his technique takes on those qualities – always moving around the kit, feet of fury, hands a blur, with the crash of symbols; pounding the listener into dust. And then there’s John (vocals). You can listen to their first record, Slowly We Rot, or their most recent self-titled, or anything in between, and John’s raspy growl is consistent. His live edition lacks nothing, and is even more emphasized by his stage presence and his exaggerated lean out over the crowd as he gutturals the agonizing lyrics that are Obituary. They operate so well together, either they practice all the time or, because they’ve been together so long, and know so well their long and hallowed catalogue, that they no longer have to practice – They are the personification of Obituary. They can’t possibly play all of the fan favorites, so they pick some and turn it out! The crowd gutturals along with John and sways back and forth, “hair banging,“ with Trevor. What an experience!
This was an epic show! And all right here in Raleigh!