Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Concert review: The Black Keys with St. Vincent at Amalie Arena, Tampa

A look back at the Tue., Dec. 16 show, with photos & setlists included

Posted By and on Wed, Dec 17, 2014 at 11:23 AM

The Black Keys at Amalie Arena Tues., Dec. 16, 2014 - TRACY MAY
  • Tracy May
  • The Black Keys at Amalie Arena Tues., Dec. 16, 2014

There was a slightly awkward, nearly 10-minute lull between the end of The Black Keys’ set and their encore on Tuesday night, and while lighters burned and phone flashlights illuminated the stage, a good portion of the healthy crowd began to stream out of the Amalie Arena. Pity on those who actually made it out the doors, though, because as some of those phone batteries gave out and smokers’ thumbs began heating up, Keys primaries Dan Auerbach and Patrick Carney led the rest of the band back onstage and rattled off the best 15 minutes of their nearly two-hour set. [Words by Ray, photos by Tracy.]

With a cotton candy swirl twirling behind the stage, Auerbach, 35, unleashed a slow burning, sizzling lead on “Weight Of Love,” the future-western album opener from brand-new effort Turn Blue. On record, the seven-minute tune carries a few timid moments for Auerbach, but the cut is a monster live, finding him ferociously wailing away on his guitar while putting together an honest fusion of the blues he obviously loves so much and the accessible rock 'n' roll appeal his band has been exploring for the last few years.

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Tuesday, December 16, 2014

New music releases out through the rest of December: Charli XCX, Teen Idols Future Classic comp & more

With audio & full album streams included.

Posted By on Tue, Dec 16, 2014 at 1:52 PM

The music release schedule winds down as the year comes to a close, so I've put together info and links for the scattering of releases coming out over the next few weeks – with audio & video for your listening and viewing pleasure. Click here to see releases from the past several weeks…

Charli XCX, Sucker (Neon Gold/Atlantic)
She's one of the performer's at this year's 93.3 FLZ Jingle Ball and has a hit single on the Top 40 pop station: "Boom Clap."

Chief Keef, Nobody (self-release)
Even though Chicago rapper Chief Keef was dropped by Interscope a lil less than two months back, he's still moving forward with the release of his album; the title track features Kanye West, who'd originally collabed with Keef on his own cut, "Hold My Liquor." It's kinda weird, Keef all syrupy-slurry and Auto-Tuned, sampling Willie Hutch’s 1973 soul classic “Brother’s Gonna Work It Out.” I guess that Kanye on support vocals? Take a listen below...

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Tonight in live music: The Black Keys with St. Vincent

Posted By on Tue, Dec 16, 2014 at 10:41 AM

The Black Keys - DANNY CLINCH
  • Danny Clinch
  • The Black Keys

I remember seeing the Back Keys back at a half-full Skipper’s Smokehouse in 2005. It was raw, unhinged, blues-licked rock n’ roll by two on-the-rise instrumentalists who were on the verge of combusting; Dan Auerbach raged guitar and howled grit-smeared sweaty soulful odes of love, pain and heartbreak while drummer Patrick Carney thrashed his kit with flailing-armed vigor. I’ve seen them a few times since, the venues and audiences growing in size each time as their style palette has grown broader and more radio-friendly while a few aux players have been added to give the instrumentals a fuller and more finely-textured sound to accommodate. This go-round, the Keys are officially holding their own in arenas, backing Danger Mouse-produced eight LP and No. 1 charter Turn Blue. Avant rock songstress St. Vincent warms the stage. 8 p.m., Amalie Arena, Tampa, $35-$75.

Media after the jump...

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Monday, December 15, 2014

D’Angelo finally releases follow-up to Voodoo, stream the whole thing now

Black Messiah, 14 years in the making, launches the soul-crooner/hermit back into the spotlight.

Posted By on Mon, Dec 15, 2014 at 12:05 PM


If you need proof that relevancy doesn't depend on an album release schedule, then look at the curious case of Michael Eugene Archer, better known as D’Angelo.

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Sunday, December 14, 2014

The Five Best-Selling Vinyl Records of 2014

Posted By on Sun, Dec 14, 2014 at 7:39 PM


Physical media may or may not be facing its imminent demise, but vinyl managed to have another record year with nearly eight million records sold over the last 12 months — a 49 percent increase over 2013 according to the Wall Street Journal.

Surprisingly, this only accounts for a mere two percent of music sales in the country.

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Saturday, December 13, 2014

This weekend in live music: Usher, Hallucination Before Christmas, Trampled by Turtles, The Greyhounds & more

Concerts this Sat.-Sun., Dec. 13-14

Posted By on Sat, Dec 13, 2014 at 4:02 AM

Lots on tap this Saturday & Sunday, Dec. 13-14. Breakdown below.

Hallucination Before Christmas The annual holiday shenanny thrown by underground electronic music label Hallucination Recordings is a much-anticipated collision of Christmas and Halloween, the freaky seasonal mayhem spread over three themed rooms and encompassing upwards of 20 electro artists. The big room is Halloween Town (aka Jack’s Christmas Graveyard and Pumpkin Patch); the sounds touch on electro, nu disco, bass music and breaks, and Tommie Sunshine leads the fray, which also includes Bunny (Rabbit in the Moon) and Monk, among others. Oogie Boogie’s Lair falls into dubstep, trap, moombahton and DnB realms as headlined by AK1200, while Christmas Town pulses with acid, deep and minimal house sounds, and finds DJ Three assuming the top billing slot. A range of eye-popping visuals (video projections, 3D animations, laser light shows), aerialists, go-go dancers, performance artists and roaming holiday freaks round out the night’s diversions. Fetish-inspired fashions and character-driven costumes encouraged. Show up after 11 p.m. or without a donation for the food drive to benefit Feeding America Tampa Bay (three cans minimum), and pay a higher cover. More info at (The Ritz Ybor, Ybor City)

Future Vintage with Leisure Chief A pairing of two funk-bumping outfits tears up the standing room stage at Yeoman’s: locally spawned electro-groove and acid jazz instrumental trio Future Vintage, and Orlando-based fusion five-piece Leisure Chief, their own saxophone-splashed sounds marked by breathy-soulful vocals and a mix of hip-hop shaking and lounge-slinking rhythms. (Yeoman’s Road Pub, Tampa)

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Friday, December 12, 2014

The Hip Hop ABCs: Letter X

The alphabetical rap battles are nearing an end with the latest X-named rapper

Posted By on Fri, Dec 12, 2014 at 11:00 AM

It is nearly impossible to get a bunch of passionate hip hop fans to agree on anything. But I tried anyhow, starting with a series of polls on Facebook that aimed to figure out which emcee or group was the best in the game as driven by the letters of the alphabet. No specific rubric or criteria was given; just a simple request for answers to the question, "Who is the best emcee or hip hop group beginning with the letter 'A'?; 'B'?; 'C'?; 'D'?..." and so on. The responses were immediate and spurred some pretty spirited discussions. A general consensus was ultimately reached for each and per the request of Music Editor Leilani Polk, I'm bringing the poll results to Ear Buds. Each week, I'll reveal a letter and its "winning" artist, and then I'll re-open the question for further debate. Once we finish the first 26, we'll start it all over again fresh.

This letter featured a different kind of landslide. Most voters struggled to even name another artist or group to represent the Letter X in the Hip Hop ABCs. Terminator X and X Clan were the only others mentioned aside from the winner, but this wa, by no means, a win by default.

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Crowbar celebrates eight years this Saturday night with Have Gun, Will Travel & others

Posted By on Fri, Dec 12, 2014 at 9:00 AM

Have Gun, Will Travel headlines Crowbar's 8-year Anniversary Party this Saturday.
  • Have Gun, Will Travel headlines Crowbar's 8-year Anniversary Party this Saturday.

In 2006, Tom DeGeorge opened the doors to a new Ybor City venture, having already spent the entirety of his shoestring budget and fearing the appearance of a fire marshal at any moment to shut it down because of water main issues. But Crowbar soldiered through intact and has become a live music hotspot that welcomes all genres and draws a diverse range of high-caliber talent, from vets to up-and-comers, and a nightlife institution with popular weekly residencies like Ol’ Dirty Sundays and All Good Tuesdays. This blowout finds beloved Bay area bands that are regulars of the Crowbar stage — from bombastic hip-hop makers Gwan Massive to the fiery old timey folk-Americana rockers Have Gun, Will Travel — playing sets in honor of the venue’s eight-year anniversary.

Details: Crowbar 8-Year Aniversary Party with Have Gun Will Travel, Sons of Hippies, Gwan Massive, Will Quinlan & Co., The Groves, Sun Signs, Sat. Dec. 13, 6 p.m.-3 a.m., Crowbar, Ybor City, free admission (ages 18 and up).

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Tonight in live music: Cory Branan & Jon Snodgrass, Sarah Mac Band Christmas Show & more

Concerts this Fri., Dec. 12

Posted By and on Fri, Dec 12, 2014 at 6:00 AM

Nothing super duper exciting this Friday but plenty to choose from. Breakdown below.

Jon Snodgrass and Cory Branan at New World last February - NICOLE KIBERT
  • Nicole Kibert
  • Jon Snodgrass and Cory Branan at New World last February

Cory Branan with Jon Snodgrass, Big Shoals, Sunshine State Branan’s clever, creative alt-country songwriting predates the current trend and one-ups it with unique personal style. Snodgrass, a principal in punks-turned-twangers unit Drag The River, has a simpler sonic signature, and an earnest, heartfelt voice that makes the material all his own. (New World Brewery, Ybor City) —Scott Harrell

Throwdown by the Bay with Brantley Gilbert, Tyler Farr, Parmalee, Colt Ford, Chase Bryant US 103.5-FM presents this five-act country extravaganza. The headlining slot is held by twang-rocker Brantley Gilbert, who has that bad-boy mystique and a third full-length, this year’s Just As I Am, that debuted at No. 1 on Billboard’s Top Country Albums charts; its hit single, “Bottoms Up,” is about drinking hard, feeling good and appreciating a pretty little mama with daisy dukes and all the right moves. (Amalie Arena, Tampa) —Leilani Polk

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Thursday, December 11, 2014

The Style Issue 2014: Style counsel from Tampa Bay's best-dressed rockers

From Salvation Army to Chanel, it's all in their repertoires

Posted By on Thu, Dec 11, 2014 at 12:02 PM

Tessa McKenna of Atlantic Oceans in leather pants by Silence and Noise, white oversized cotton shirt by BDG, shoes black Jeffery Campbell Litas - CHIP WEINER
  • Chip Weiner
  • Tessa McKenna of Atlantic Oceans in leather pants by Silence and Noise, white oversized cotton shirt by BDG, shoes black Jeffery Campbell Litas

A renowned fashionista, songstress, and one-third of post-Sleepy Vikings New Granada Records-repped folk pop group Atlantic Oceans.

One word that best describes your personal style? Trying to use one word to describe my personal style seems almost impossible but the closest word would probably have to be “minimal.” To me, a neckline can sometimes flatter more than a piece of jewelry. I try to stick with simple shapes and minimal detailing. I am a firm believer in the “take one accessory off before leaving the house” rule.

What are a few of your go-to staples? Oversized cotton sweaters and long delicate necklaces. I can’t live without my black Jeffery Campbell Litas; I have a total height complex so five-and-a-half inch heels make me feel as tall as I wish I was, leggings because it’s basically an acceptable way to wear pajamas during the day, and black ballet flats because I work in food service so comfortable and versatile closed-toed shoes are a must.

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