Quadstock and Two Smoking Barrels
By Simon McCormack
With the end of the schoolyear fast approaching, students will soon be finished with roughly nine months' worth of hard work and perseverance. Other than a summer vacation and, at best, a diploma to be received at a later date, there isn’t much in the way of a tangible reward for the efforts of New Mexico’s academics.
But there is one substantial exception to this phenomenon of callous disregard for scholars across the state: The College of Santa Fe’s Quadstock, which will feature Cambodian pop-rock sextet Dengue Fever as well as four other rock acts, is set to descend upon the CSF Quad on Saturday, May 5. What follows is a brief description of the event lineup that should help inform quadstocker’s auditory expectations.
Dengue Fever: Take clear-cut pop ambiance, the psychedelia of the Farfisa organ and the earthy, weightless vocals of lead singer Chhom Nimol and you’ve got L.A.’s up-and-coming Dengue Fever. Drawing from traditional influences such as Cambodia’s own singer/songwriter Sinn Sisamouth, as well as more contemporary artists like Blondie, the band has fashioned a sound that’s enigmatic yet familiar.
Griffin House: Griffin House (one man, not a band or a dwelling) was recently dubbed by VH1’s Senior Vice President one of the five best new singer/songwriters in the U.S. One listen to Griffin’s Bruce Springsteenish folk-rock and it’s easy to see why. House’s songs have an around-the-campfire feel and a good natured honesty that make them easy to get along with.
Rose’s Pawn Shop: Boozy, bluesy bluegrass from Southern California, Rose’s Pawn Shop stays sweet even when the lyrics smack of defeat. After a hard day at the office (or on the farm) a quick listen to this country-fried five-piece is more than enough to get you back on your feet and two-stepin’.
Sons of William: Classic rock ’n’ roll and girl/boy harmonies make up the engine that drives the Sons of William, which benefits immensely from Son Jen Jan’et's backing vocals. SOW brandishes spit-shined, stripped-down melodies and has a true knack for the classic rock homage.
The show will also include a performance by the as-yet-to-be-crowned winner of the CSF Battle of the bands. You can buy tickets to Quadstock for $10 in advance by visiting the CSF Greer Garson Box Office or by calling
Jill Cohn • indie, singer-