Music to Your Ears
By Jessica Cassyle Carr
On Hos and Hip-hop—Last week in response to Oprah's two-part Hip-hop Town Hall (which was in response to Don Imus being a dipshit), poet and hip-hop artist Saul Williams wrote an open letter to Oprah. Oprah's programs dealt with misogyny, racism, marginalization and censorship and hosted guests such as Def Jam cofounder Russell Simmons, rapper Common, poet and author Maya Angelou, a record executive, an entertainment lawyer, people involved with the NAACP and a group of female students from Spelman College (who, in 2004, protested a Nelly performance for his treatment of women in his videos). While the program was positive, it wasn't in-depth. Saul Williams’ letter, on the other hand, was.
Paging Dr. Octagon
Triumphant or resistant, an innovator returns
By Marisa Demarco
It was your average rabies call. Dr. Octagon was paged to Room 109, unaware of his looming demise. “I’ll tell you what,” spat Dr. Dooom as Octagon entered. “Take this, motherfucker. Take two of these and call me in the morning.” And thus, the good doctor was capped. Cause of death? Multiple GSWs (gunshot wounds) from a nemesis Octagon never saw coming.
Flyer on the Wall
Go West, Young Band
Rio Rancho gets a little louder when The Pharmacy, Fiction Onehundred, Built for Dummies and Easier Said Than Done play Thursday, April 26, at Turtle Mountain Brewing Co. (21+). Bring a few dollars for cover. (LM)
The Hands and The Skeletons
Hand jives and exorcisms
By Simon McCormack
Garage rock is a tricky genre. From listening to the intentionally lo-fi recordings and simple song structures, you might be tempted to think anyone can pull it off. Goodness knows a lot of bands have tried, but few have managed to stand out enough to gain more than just local recognition. Still others, such as Southern California’s The Willowz, struggle to break out of the tightly confined space the genre allows without losing what made them successful in the first place.
Neil Cowley Trio Displaced · Miles Okazaki Mirror · Misha Piatigorsky Uncommon Circumstance
By Mel Minter
Brash, punkish energy, hooks that could snag a whale and sheer invigorating exuberance mark the debut recording of the Neil Cowley Trio (with pianist/composer Cowley, bassist Richard Sadler and drummer Evan Jenkins). A taut ballad, a trancelike rocker, a miniature that recalls Vince Guaraldi, a conundrum set to music, a contemplative swinger—Cowley attacks everything with breathtaking dynamic flair and a surprising, adept touch. With a sure rhythmic feel and an irrepressible and infectious spirit, Cowley and the boys gleefully roll the tunes downhill in a headlong rush—almost, but never quite, losing control every time.
Boyz II Men • R&B
By August March
On Sunday, Feb. 14, the Legends Theater at Route 66 Casino presents a concert by romantic balladeers and masters of a capella ruminations on love and life, Boyz II Men. An R&B group (now a trio, formerly and originally a quartet) with an affinity for soulful musical wanderings through the heart of human affection, Boyz II Men first made the scene in the 1990s with radio-friendly hits like “End of the Road,” “I’ll Make Love to You” and “One Sweet Day,” an epic tune to forever love they recorded with super-chanteuse Mariah Carey. In the years since they rose to the top of the pops, one member, Michael McCary departed the ensemble, leaving an essential trio comprised of tenors Shawn Stockman and Wanya Morris as well as baritone Nathan Morris. Together, these three still bring the flavor of love to life as they tour around a gratefully enchanted planet of men and women. Tickets for this all-ages performance range in price from $35-$70 while romance fills the air beginning at 8pm.
Concepto Tambor • Afro-Latin • Mondo Vibrations • reggae, rock • Merican Slang • funk • DJ Buddhafunk at Launchpad
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